On the edge of a green piece of paper shoved under his wicket a Dallas bank cashier read:- This is the last of a £20,000 fortune spent on wine, women and song. I am now in jail awaiting execution for murder.
A daughter was once called to the bedside of her dying father. Well, Mary, he said, I have not done my duty to you. Oh yes, you have father, replied Mary. You have sent me to church and Sunday School. Yes, said the dying man sadly, but I should have taken you.
All is now lost; finally, irrecoverably lost. All is dark and doubtful.
I am about to take a leap in the dark. I shall be glad to find a hole to creep out of the world at.
My sufferings are intolerable; I have within me a hundred years of life but not a moments courage. Give me more laudanum that I may not think of eternity.
I am abandoned by God and man! I shall go to hell!
I would give worlds, if I had them, if the Age of Reason had never been published. 0 Lord help me! Christ, help me! Stay with me; it is hell to be left alone!
- TOM PAINE.
I am suffering the pangs of the damned.
Oh, that I was to lie upon the fire that never is quenched a thousand years, to purchase the favour of God, and be re-united to Him again! But it is a fruitless wish. Millions of millions of years will bring me no nearer to the end of my torments than one poor hour. Oh eternity, eternity! forever and forever! Oh, the insufferable pangs of hell! - SIR FRANCIS PORT.
But there is no valley here!
- D. L. MOODY.
I am in perfect peace, resting alone on the blood of Christ. I find this amply sufficient to enter the presence of God with.
When Faraday was lying ill, his physician, Dr. Latham, found in tears, his head resting on a table on which lay an open Bible. I am afraid you are worse, said Dr. Latham. It is not that, Faraday replied with a sob; but oh, why will people go astray, when they have this Blessed Book in their hands?
I look, as the chief of sinners, for the mercy of God in Christ to life eternal. And I lie adoring the sovereignty of God in choosing such an one, and the mercy of God in pardoning such an one, and the patience of God in bearing with such an one, and the faithfulness of God in perfecting His work and performing all His promises to such an one.
- CHARLES SIMEON.
John Knox, as a young man, was an eye-witness of the martyrdom by burning at the stake of that marvellous man of God, George Wishart. He could never get over the triumphant march of that victorious martyr into the flames of death (Savage). He started to read the Book that had been the cause of Wisharts condemnation for heresy and he soon found a precious promise into which he cast the anchor of faith. And this is life eternal, that they might know thee, only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent (John 17: 3). The last words of the old reformer were, Go! Read where I cast my first anchor. And his wife got a Bible and read again the text wafting him into heaven on the breath of the verse that brought about the regeneration of a nation (John 17: 3).
King Edward the Confessor, nearing the end, said:- Weep not, I shall not die, but live; as I leave the land of the dying I trust to see the blessings of the Lord in the land of the living.
No man can say I did not preach the love of God!
- W. G. ELMSLIE.
When Dr. Arnold, of Rugby, was in his last agony, his lips moved and his hands clasped, and all at once he exclaimed in firm and final tones:- Jesus saith unto him, Because thou hast seen Me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed.
Can this be death? Why, it is better than living! Tell them I die happy in Jesus.
- JOHN ARTHUR LYTH.
Henry Bewley, of Dublin, when upon his death at the friends who were surrounding him, and said to them:- See that ye have the characteristics of the three people that lived in the home at Bethany - namely, the life of a risen man like Lazarus; the work of loving service as revealed in Marthas activity; and the spirit of devout worship and loyal love which was evidenced in Mary.
On the tomb of John Bacon, the Sculptor, by his order was placed the following inscription:- What I was as an artist seemed to me of some importance while I lived; what I really was as a believer in Christ Jesus is the only thing of importance to me now.
Queen Victoria had these words placed on her husbands tomb: Farewell, well-beloved! Here at last I will rest with thee, and with thee in Christ I shall rise again.
David Brainerd in his dying hours wrote this letter to his brother Israel Brainerd, then at College:- My dear Brother, it is on the verge of Eternity I now address you. I am heartily sorry that I have so little strength to write what I long so much to communicate to you. But, let me tell you, my brother, Eternity is another thing than we ordinarily take it to be when in a healthful state. Oh, how fixed and unalterable! Oh, of what infinite importance it is, that we be prepared for Eternity! I have been just a-dying now for more than a week; and all around me have thought me so. I have had clear views of eternity, have seen the blessedness of the godly, in some measure; and have longed to share their happy state; as well as been comfortably satisfied, that through grace, I shall do so; but oh, what anguish is raised in my mind, to think of Eternity for those who are Christless, for those who are mistaken, and who bring their false hopes to the grave with them! The sight was so dreadful, I could by no means bear it: my thoughts recoiled, and I said, under a more affecting sense than ever before, Who can dwell with everlasting burnings! Oh, methought, could I now see my friends, that I may warn them to see to it, that they lay their foundation for Eternity sure. And for you, my dear brother, I have been particularly concerned; and have wondered why I so much neglected conversing with you about your spiritual state at our last meeting. Oh, my brother, let me then beseech you now to examine whether you are indeed a new creature? If you cannot answer positively, consider seriously the frequent breathings of your soul; but do not, however, put yourself off with a slight answer. If you have reason to think you are graceless, 0 give yourself and the throne of grace no rest, till God arise and save. But if the case should be otherwise, bless for His grace, and press after holiness.