An Atheist Stumbles on a Child

The Man Who Had Nothing

William Hone was an atheist lecturer who traveled around the country speaking against the teachings of God’s holy Word. One day he was taking a walk in the country and lost his way. He came upon a poor, tumble-down cottage, in front of which a little girl was reading a book. After getting directions to his road, he picked up the book the child was reading. To his surprise he found it was a copy of the New Testament. Throwing it on the ground, he said to the girl, “You foolish little thing, how is it that you read such stupid books as this?”

The child looked at him in shocked surprise, and cried, “Oh, please don’t talk that way about my Book. My mother is sick in bed, and this book is our only comfort.” 

All I do is take away people’s hopes. No God, no Christ, no heaven, no hell.

Reality Opens a Heart

The simple words spoken by the girl set William Hone thinking. “Those poor, simple people,” he said to himself, “are in trouble; the mother sick, the child young, and yet they have found something real in that Book; they have got something on which to live and die. What could I give them that would be a comfort now, or a support in death? All I do is take away people’s hopes. No God, no Christ, no heaven, no hell. And what have I for myself but nothing, instead of something real?”

William Hone began to study the Book, and was saved with an everlasting salvation. It became his greatest joy to tell to others what great things God had done for him. On the flyleaf of his Bible he wrote the following words:

“The proudest heart that ever beat

Has been subdued in me.”

Have you carefully read and thought about God’s Word, the Bible? Do you take time when alone to see in it what God’s thoughts of sin and salvation are? He loves you, and He wants to save you and to satisfy your heart forever.

“I am come that they might have life and that they have it more abundantly” (John 10:10).

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Adapted from His Riches.

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