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“ taken up
all. This revelation of Jesus Christ will be visible to the whole world. “ This same Jesus, which is
into heaven, shall so come in “like manner, as ye have seen him go into heaven.” “ Behold, he cometh with clouds, and every eye “shall see him, and they that have pierced him; " and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because “ of him : even so, Amen.”] The man Jesus, in his glorified body, even that body which was crowned with thorns, scourged, spitted on, and nailed to the cross, will then be made visible to all men : to those who thus abused him, and to such as have in every age consented to this deed, by despising him, and his salvation. He will be seen by all « who have crucified him," as it were, again and again ; as well as by them, for whom “he “ once suffered, the just for the unjust, to bring “ them unto God.”
But how immensely will his appearance, as Judge of the world, differ from that of “ the man of sor“ rows!” The mount of transfiguration, when “his countenance shone as the sun, and his raiment “ was like lightning ;” yea, the vision of his glory, which caused his beloved disciple, who had once reclined on his bosom in the familiarity of endeared friendship, to “ fall down at his feet as dead ;" can give us but a faint idea of that divine light and majesty, with which he will be arrayed when he shall ascend his awful tribunal. He shall then “ be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels:' the angels of his power and authority ; the ministers of his vengeance and his love.-“ At the end
“ of the world, the Son of man shall send forth his “ angels ; and they shall gather out of his king“ dom all things that offend, and them that do ini
quity; and shall cast them into a furnace of fire : “ there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth."
They shall see the Son of man coming in the “ clouds of heaven with power and great glory; “ and he shall send his angels, and they shall gather together his elect.” Hence it is evident that all the angels are the creatures and servants, as well as the worshippers,2 of the incarnate Son of God.
His coming will be announced by a summons, august and tremendous beyond description ; and immediately followed by the resurrection of the dead. “ The Lord himself shall descend from “ heaven with a shout, with the voice of the arch“angel and the trump of God: and the dead in “ Christ shall rise first." “ Behold I shew you a
mystery! We shall not all sleep, but we shall “ all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling “ of an eye, at the last trump. For the trumpet “shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed." « The “ hour cometh, when all that are in the graves “ shall hear his voice, and shall come forth; they “ that have done good to the resurrection of life, “and they that have done evil to the resurrection “ of damnation.” 3 Believers will rise first, and then such of the saints as shall be alive on the earth, at that time will be “changed;" that“ death
· Matt. xiii. 41-43. xxiv, 30, 31. · Heb. i. 6.
may be swallowed up in victory.” Afterwards the multitudes of the wicked will “ awake to shame “ and everlasting contempt.” The bodies of the unnumbered millions, who through succeeding ages have inhabited the globe, wherever laid, or however consumed, will be restored to life, and reunited to their immortal souls, that they may participate their happiness or misery. “Then the dead, small “and great, shall stand before God. The sea shall
give up the dead that were in it; and death and “hell shall deliver up the dead which were in “them.” 1
At this important crisis, the earth and all its works, yea the visible heavens also, shall become one general conflagration : “ The heavens and “ earth, which now are, by the same word are
kept in store, reserved unto fire, against the day “ of judgment and perdition of ungodly men."
The day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens shall pass away with
a great noise, and the elements shall melt with “ fervent heat; the earth also, and all the works “ which are therein shall be burned up. “heaven and earth shall flee away, and there shall “ be found no place for them."
In vain should we attempt a description of this sublime and awful scene: our faculties labour, and our tongues as it were falter, when we would think or speak of such subjects. What then will be the feelings of the immense multitudes assembled on this occasion! What the astonishment, terror, and despair of the impenitent! of such as have idol
1 Rev. xx. 13-15.
• 2 Pet. iii. 7, 10.-12.
ized those things which are the prey
of all-devouring flames! of those who have 'blasphemed that Saviour who appears to be their judge! or ridiculed the divine testimony concerning the place of torment, and those evil spirits which are ready to seize upon them! Let us then recollect, that we shall be present, not as mere spectators, but as cited “ to give account to him that is ready to “ judge the quick and the dead.” “For we must “all appear before the judgment-seat of Christ, “ that every one may receive the things done in “ his body, according to that he hath done, whe“ ther it be good or bad."1 Our present conduct is voluntary; we choose whether we will serve the Lord, or not: but we shall not be allowed to choose whether we will stand before his tribunal, or decline the awful decision.
It is extremely frivolous to start objections against the doctrines of revelation, taken from our low apprehensions, or levelled against the misinterpretations of injudicious believers. “ Ye do “ err, not knowing the scriptures nor the power “ of God.” He has declared these things in his authenticated word: “his testimony is sure and “giveth wisdom unto the simple :” and “ he that “ believeth not hath made him a liar."
Will any man presume to say, that it is impossible for God to raise the dead? That human nature should be capable of such daring absurdity ought to cover us with shame, and cause us to tremble. Let us, my friends, imitate the ancient patriarch, who “ by faith, being warned of God of “things not seen as yet, was moved with fear and “prepared an ark.” Let us “
'2 Cor, v. 10.
prepare to meet our “God, and seriously inquire, Who may abide the
day of his coming? or who may stand when he “ appeareth ?”
Neither ought we to regard those“ scoffers,” who, according to the prediction of the apostle, are “ come in these last days, walking after their own
lusts, and saying, Where is the promise of his
coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all “ things continue as they were from the begin
ning of the creation.” We know not indeed the precise time when the Lord shall come; but we should not be ignorant that “one day is with the “ Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years
as one day:” and we are assured that “the day “ of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night ; • for, when they shall say, Peace and safety, then • sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child, and they shall not
Death is very near, and judgment follows. In this sense“ The judge standeth at “ the door:” and “ the end of all things is at “ hand." “ Be ye therefore ready; for ye
know “not what hour your Lord doth come.” The intervening space will soon elapse: let us then “ac“count his long suffering to be salvation :” and,
seeing we look for such things, let us be diligent, “that we may be found of him in peace without
spot and blameless."—We proceed,
II. To consider the discoveries which will then be made. “ The Lord shall come, who will both