CONTACT WITHOUT COMMUNION
John Henry Jowett, D. D., New York
Some seeds fell by the wayside.--Matt. 13 :4.
HERE is a field, and here is a sower sowing his seed;
and the simple statement of the text is that some of
the seeds fell by the wayside. And there the seed
lies, pregnant with life and possible fruitfulness. But
it can not get into the ground, so that the vitalities in
the earth and the vitalities in the seed do not come
into communion. The miracle of quickening is nearly
happening, yet does not happen. The regeneration
is almost at the birth, but it is not born. The seed
is on the ground, but not in it. Seed and earth touch,
but do not combine. There is contact, but not union. And in that
sentence there is all that I want to speak about this morning: the
danger of contact without communion. Because my Master says that
in the field of human life great happenings may be exceedingly near
and yet appallingly remote. Truth may be right up against the soul
and yet there may be no benefit. The human and the divine may be in
the immediate neighborhood and yet there may be no acquaintance.
The divine may be as near to the human as the seed was to the way-
side and still there may be no apprehension. We may brush against
God and never know it. There may be contact, but no communion.
The seed may be on the ground.
This appears to be the character suggested in the Master's word:
We have a soul in touch with truth, but not trained, in touch with life,
but not alive; in touch with God, but not a son. God is near, but the
soul does no business. Hands meet, but they do not grasp. There is
contact, but no communion. The seed is on the ground. Therefore I