The end is near! God calls upon the church to set in order the things that remain. Workers together with God, you are empowered by the Lord to take others with you into the kingdom. You are to be God's living agents, channels of light to the world, and round about you are angels of heaven with their commission from Christ to
sustain, strengthen, and uphold you in working for the salvation of souls.
I appeal to the churches in every conference. Stand out separate and distinct from the world--in the world, but not of it, reflecting the bright beams of the Sun of Righteousness, being pure, holy, and undefiled, and in faith carrying light into all the highways and byways of the earth.
Let the churches awake before it is everlastingly too late. Let every member take up his individual work and vindicate the name of the Lord by which he is called. Let sound faith and earnest piety take the place of slothfulness and unbelief. When faith lays hold upon Christ, the truth will bring delight to the soul, and the services of religion will not be dull and uninteresting. Your social meetings, now tame and spiritless, will be vitalised by the Holy Spirit; daily you will have a rich experience as you practise the Christianity you profess. Sinners will be converted. They will be touched by the word of truth and will say, as did some who listened to Christ's teaching: "We have seen and heard wonderful things today."
In view of what might be done if the church would meet its God-given responsibilities, will its members sleep on, or will they arouse to a sense of the honour conferred upon them through the merciful providence of God? Will they gather up their hereditary trusts, avail themselves of the present light, and feel the necessity of rising to meet the urgent emergency that now presents itself? Oh, that all may arouse and manifest to the world that theirs is a living faith, that a vital issue is before the world, that Jesus will soon come. Let men see that we believe that we are on the borders of the eternal world.
The upbuilding of the kingdom of God is retarded or urged forward according to the unfaithfulness or fidelity
of human agencies. The work is hindered by the failure of the human to co-operate with the divine. Men may pray, "Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven;" but if they fail of acting out this prayer in their lives, their petitions will be fruitless.
But though you may be weak, erring, and sinful, the Lord holds out to you the offer of partnership with Him self. He invites you to come under divine instruction. Uniting with Christ, you may work the works of God. "Without Me," Christ said, "ye can do nothing."
Through the prophet Isaiah is given the promise, "Thy righteousness shall go before thee; the glory of the Lord shall be thy rearward." Isaiah 58:8. It is the righteousness of Christ that goes before us, and this is the glory of the Lord which is to be our rearward. Ye churches of the living God, study this promise, and consider how your lack of faith, of spirituality, of divine power, is hindering the coming of the kingdom of God. If you would go forth to do Christ's work, angels of God would open the way before you, preparing hearts to receive the gospel. Were every one of you a living missionary, the message for this time would speedily be proclaimed in all countries, to every people and nation and tongue. This is the work that must be done before Christ shall come in power and great glory. I call upon the church to pray earnestly that you may understand your responsibilities. Are you individually laborers together with God? If not, why not? When do you mean to do your heaven-appointed work?
For all who are disheartened there is but one remedy, --faith, prayer, and work.
Our churches should not feel jealous and neglected because they do not receive ministerial labour. They should themselves rather take up the burden and labour most earnestly for souls.
Every talent in our churches should be employed in the work of doing good. The rough places of nature, the wild places, God has made attractive by placing beautiful things among the most unsightly. This is the work we are called to do.
We need in our churches youth who are working upon the Christian endeavour principles, and the beginning must be made at home. The faithful performance of home duties has a reflex influence upon the character. In the father's house is to be given the evidence of fitness for work in the church.
The Lord does not judge us according to the elevation of our various spheres, but according to the faithfulness with which we fill them.
If we do but one third of that which we have entrusted talents to do, the other two thirds are working against Christ.
The greatest work that can be done in our world is to
glorify God by living the character of Christ.