Scenting victory: young rebels on an armoured vehicle:



“I saw them with my own eyes  British passport holder Mahnoud Elgin told me that he was savagely beaten up by Gaddafi thugs who chanted as they sung: ‘Who is your master?  Gaddafi is your master!’ ” (Daily Mail, Friday February 25, 2011.







The possibilities of future war put beyond all possibility of doubt the imminent intervention of God.


It is extraordinary how even keen missionary enthusiasts can see the world’s swift plunge downward with no faintest perception of all that Christ and the Apostles have foretold of the last crisis.


We shall understand the awful judgments of God, now on the threshold - today’s iniquities are rapidly growing blacker than any on record:-  They have no respect for any person; old ladies, women, teenage girls and boys are being raped and abused; and children, even infants, are being abused in evil ways.  “My hope of the world’s salvation,” said Dr. Dinsdale Young, “lies not in any evangelisation but in the personal return of Christ




Back in 1945, Sir Stafford Cripps wrote:- “The atomic bomb has entirely altered the history of the world.  With its coming the whole scene has changed radically and completely.  The whole strategy of war has been transformed; and there is now no doubt whatever that a war fought out with atomic bombs would most certainly destroy civilization  The Duke of Bedford said truly in the House of Lords (that same year):- “It is because people have persistently neglected to give Christian principles a trial that they have been brought hard up against a situation in which further neglect will involve the world in utter destruction




The post-tribulationists, who consign all believers – whether watchful or unwatchful – to the Great Tribulation, but contend that the ‘tribulation’ is not the wrath of God, a wrath which is expressed only, in ‘the great and terrible day of the Lord’ which follows it, are silenced by a single fact.  That the Great Tribulation is in the Great and Terrible Day of the Lord – no prelude to it, but part of it – is proved by our Lord’s words describing it.  “Then shall be great tribulation, such as hath not been from the beginning of the world until now, NO, NOR EVEN SHALL BE” (Matt. 24: 21).  Since so much horror will occur again, the Tribulation must include, nor forestall, the Day of the Lord.




So the pre-tribulationists, who are sure that all believers – even the grossest backsliders – will be rapt en masse into the sudden glory before the Tribulation starts, overlook the warning of our Lord  “Watch ye at every season, making supplication, that ye may prevail to escape all these things” – He has just described the Great Tribulation, ‘days of vengeance’ (Verse 22) – “that shall come to pass” (Luke 21: 36).  The Old Testament type, which our Lord stresses as a warning to His disciples concerning His return, is extraordinarily illuminating:- “Remember Lot  Lot’s wife had no part in the fire and brimstone that wiped out Sodom, yet in a moment she was turned to stone for ‘looking back’ – back-sliding.  Like Lot’s wife, the unwatchful believer escapes Hell, but incurs the lightenings of the Judgment Seat.




[* The wrath of God is just as much a perfection as His love, for there is nothing that is not perfect in Him.  Wrath in God is not man’s passion elevated to a divine sphere and level.  This is a total misconception.  Wrath in God is not a passion at all, it is rather a principle.  It is not variable, capricious, changeable; it is eternal, and immutable, like everything else in Him.  When a magnetic needle is set on its pivot it swings towards the pole.  If approached at one end with another magnet, it attracts; if approached at the other, it repels; by the same law it attracts at one, and repels at the other.  So the same attribute of divine benevolence attracts holiness at one pole, and repels wickedness at the other. – A. T. PIERSON, D.D.]


Both groups base their teaching on 1 Thess. 1: 10 – the pre-tribulationists asserting that all believers will escape the Tribulation wrath, the post-tribulationists that the Tribulation is not wrath.  But while we are fundamentally and eternally delivered from the wrath to come [in ‘the lake of fire’], Paul states that we [regenerate] believers [if disobedient] can incur the wrath of God, even in the day of grace.  After speaking of fornication and uncleanness, he says, - “Let no man deceive you with empty words; for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the sons of disobedience: be not ye therefore partakers with them” (Eph. 5: 6).  So also:- “Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth, fornication, uncleanness, passion; for which things’ sake cometh the wrath of God upon the sons of disobedience” (Col. 3: 5).  It follows indisputably that the incestuous brother, whose body was committed to Satan for destruction [of his flesh] that his spirit might be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus (1 Cor. 5: 5), incurred the wrath of God.*  One word of our Lord, upsetting both groups, explicitly states that the overcomer will escape, and the overcomer only, the coming judgments.  “Because thou didst keep the word of my patience” – not because he was a believer, a saved man – “I also will keep thee from the hour of trial, that hour which is to come upon the whole world, to try them that dwell upon the earth” (Rev. 3: 10).


[* We do well to realise the tragic sufferings of millions today, both to promote more keenly sympathetic prayer, and for our own closer walk with God in case such tribulations await us.]






“Behold, the Lord maketh the earth empty, and maketh it waste, and turneth it upside down, and scattereth abroad the inhabitants thereof” (Isa. 24: 1).  And from verse 17 to verse 21 of the same chapter we have a picture of a war that will devastate the whole earth.  Men have experienced something of this in the so called World War Il.  “Fear and the pit and the snare are upon thee, 0 inhabitant of the earth.  And it shall come to pass that he that fleeth from the noise of the fear shall fall into the pit; and he that cometh up out of the midst of the pit, shall be taken in the snare; for the windows from on high are open, and the foundations of the earth do shake.  The earth is utterly down, the earth is clean dissolved, the earth is moved exceedingly.  The earth shall reel to and fro like a drunkard, and shall be removed like a cottage, and the transgression thereof shall be heavy upon it; and it shall fall and not rise again


One can see, after reading this scripture, that war has not reached the intensity here described except in scattered areas.  These verses show that it will compass all of the earth.  “The noise of the fear” here expresses the terror produced by the roar of bombing planes, as they swooped down upon helpless towns and cities in this last war.  The pit (air-raid shelter or shell hole) might afford some protection, yet those coming up again are targets for the “strafing” of the enemy overhead.  All this has already been experienced by some of the nations of the earth.


“Evil shall go forth from nation to nation, and a great whirlwind shall be raised up from the coasts of the earth.  And the slain of the Lord shall be at that day from one end of the earth even unto the other end of the earth; they shall not be lamented, neither gathered, nor buried; they shall be dung upon the ground  This pictures what horrors may be expected with the atomic bomb or its successor within the control of the anti-Christ.  We can understand that the after-effects of the destroying bomb, whether the atomic or one still worse, will make it too risky for anyone to go into the bombed areas to gather the dead and bury them.


The Midnight Cry.








When we think how persistently man has desecrated and made havoc of this earth, which is God’s creation, how stubbornly the human heart has crucified Christ afresh in every age and put Him to an open shame, how defiantly it has refused the light of life, preferring the darkness and chaos of its own wrecking passions and ruthless self-assertion - when we think of these things, do not we, like Luther, stand amazed at the self-control of heaven?  Why has the great Creator not despaired utterly of His creatures?  Why is the whole tragic performance not swept away into oblivion?  The sin of man - how can God bear it?


One of the most moving statements*ever given of this bewildering patience of God is to be found in the pages of the prophet Hosea. This man, out of an experience of crushing personal sorrow, was able to bring for Israelite religion and for the world a new philosophy of history and an amazing discovery of the mind and heart of God.


It seems to have happened like this: one day, when he was brooding in secret on the domestic tragedy which had wrecked his home and darkened his life, it suddenly occurred to him that there was something strangely similar in national history.  Israel, the chosen people, had broken the covenant and sinned away her soul, and rejected the God who was her home.  What would God do?  Must He not disown her, and cast her off?  Was it not inevitable, as voices of doom were declaring, that the national fate was sealed and judgment at the door?


“But stay,” thought Hosea, “Here am I, crucified in the region of my affections, and yet knowing that if Gomer came back to me tomorrow I would sing for joy and take her to my arms and forgive everything‑I love her still so utterly.  Shall God love less?  If I would do that for my dearest possession, shall God do less for His  This was the swift insight which made the man a prophet, this daring logic of faith rising from the human to the divine.  “If human love can know such agony, how much more love divine!  If I can suffer so for Gomer, how much more God for Israel  As Lacordaire once put it dramatically – “If you would know how the Almighty feels toward us, listen to the beating of your own heart, and add to it infinity!”


So this man Hosea, seven hundred years before Christ, arrived at three of the greatest truths of religion.


First, the Sorrow of God.  The tragedy which had happened in his own home was a kind of miniature of the vast tragedy which had happened in God’s world.  God’s relation to the nation, as he now pictured it, had been one of marriage and romance, Jehovah was the husband of Israel ... “I will betroth thee to Me for ever; yea, I will betroth thee unto Me in righteousness and in justice, in real love and in tender mercies: I will betroth thee unto Me in faithfulness, and thou shalt know Jehovah  It is a forecast of that lovely New Testament picture - the Church as the Bride of Christ.


The misery of the world’s tragic wrongness and rebellion is not that it breaks a law, but that it smites love in the face.  An impersonal law cannot suffer; and if God is a kind of Philosophic Absolute, then, of course, God cannot suffer, and those who declare that the notion of suffering is incompatible with divinity and a degradation of the idea of God are perfectly right.  But it is quite certain that love can suffer terribly; and if God is love, then immeasurable must be the agony, overwhelming the burden, that weighs on God to-day.  That is why the central symbol of the Christian religion is a Cross.


Beyond this first great truth, so decisively relevant to our situation to-day, Hosea discerped another - the un-discourageable patience of God.  His own love for Gomer, he found, survived the wrecking of his home: he loved her still, and could not let her go.  How much more would God refuse to let Israel go!  “Ephraim, how can I give you up?  Israel, how can I let you go  As we listen to these words, seven centuries fall away, and a Greater than Hosea stands on the brow of Olivet, gazing at the city of God.  “0 Jerusalem, Jerusalem, how often would I have gathered thy children together, and ye would not  We break faith with God, and He loves us still.  We multiply our sin, and He multiplies His love.  We put Him to an open shame, and He refuses to despair.  Verily, as the apostle said: “The long-suffering of our Lord is salvation.


There was a third truth which Hosea saw shining like a beacon above the chaos and corruption of his time.  This was the ultimate Victory of God.  The midnight of his own domestic tragedy led on to a brighter day; for he found Gomer in the far country, and brought her back to the home of her youth.  How much more would God win the Israel of His love!  “Behold, I will allure her, and bring her into the wilderness, and speak comfortably unto her; and she shall sing there, as in the days of her youth, and as in the day when she came up out of the land of Egypt  That is the final picture: God not now sorrowing passively, nor merely watching patiently, but going forth in action to redeem.


What is this but the Christian evangel?  In Jesus Christ, crucified, risen and exalted, God has acted in history.  In that life and death and resurrection, God has intervened decisively against the hosts of evil.  The fact of Christ is the living God going forth to war, with power and great glory, against every wrecking force that desolates the earth, and every sin that rots the souls of men.  The Cross is not a poignant memory of a moving human heroism.  It is God in action.  It is God defeating evil irrevocably and for ever at the very point where all the concentrated forces of evil were boasting their greatest victory.  It is God turning the wrath of man to His praise.  It is a lever strong enough to move the world.


Can there be any doubt of the issue?  Even Hosea, in the dim ages before Christ, had no doubt:  “O death, I will be thy plagues; O grave I will be thy destruction  All the deadly forces of history, the tyrant principalities and powers, the ruthless blight of wickedness in high places, and the sins from whose stubborn grip no man can ransom himself or be his own redeemer, shall yield to the Name that is above every name.


- World Dominion.








[All who are interested in the creation of the atomic bomb will find a thoroughly adequate scientific unfolding of this appalling discovery in Dr. Clark’s booklet, - The Atomic Bomb: What of the Future.  But the far profounder interest of our readers and, as we hope of all its readers  - will centre in the overwhelming coming events which the discovery manifestly indicates, and which the author puts on the lips of a Christian emerging from a century ago. We take but a few extracts from the final pages.‑ D. M. Panton.].


Obviously, the situation is fraught with danger.  If national States continue to take it for granted, as in the past, that they have a right to make their own weapons and organise their own armies, the next war will be frightful beyond description.  And, moreover, the probability of there being another war will be greater than ever before - for in time the new weapon is certain to prove an irresistible temptation to a political adventurer somewhere in the world who, sure as fate, will be tempted with the prospect of becoming ruler of the world.


These possibilities are so alarming that thinking people everywhere are beginning to see only one possible solution.  The day of national States is passed.  The only hope for the world rests in a central authority.  Since the coming of the atomic bomb many even of those who have long resisted this inevitable conclusion have been forced to accept it at last.


In the end there is one very likely outcome.  It is a familiar fact that, taken as a whole, human beings are almost incapable of loyalty to a cause or a system.  They require a definite person to whom they can show allegiance.  If, like the Emperor of Japan, such a person can be regarded as a demigod, so much the better.  Indeed, the time will come when all men will be waiting for such a leader. And, if he comes, will it not be said that he is superhuman?  Even children in Germany were taught that Hitler was divine.  Will less be said of a world leader who saves the earth from war?


The belief that, in the end, a. world leader will be necessary and will be thrown up at the crucial moment is now quite widely held.  Expressions of this view have appeared in the purely secular press over a number of years.  The belief is undoubtedly founded on sound psychology and will be immeasurably strengthened by the advent of the atomic bomb.  If there is to be a really effective system of international control, it would seem that it can be made effective only by a process of almost ruthless tyranny.


Let us imagine that a man who lived a century ago is suddenly imported into our world.  “The thing that amazes me most,” he says, “is that you moderns studiously avoid everything which savours of the beliefs which we used to hold.  Just try to listen to my point of view.  We Christians believed that just before Christ returned there would be a dreadful period of destruction and unhappiness on earth.  We called this time the last days or the day of the Lord.  We believed that before this period started there would be an apostasy in which a majority of the nations would depart from the faith and give heed to a fable - the fable that there are no divine interventions in history.  So we believed that men would begin to laugh at the very idea of a second coming of Christ, but that nevertheless they would keep up an outward show of religion.


“We learned that, in time, the whole world would become a single great kingdom possessing irresistible might.  At the head of this kingdom there would arise a very wicked man whose true character would not, at first, be apparent.  By uniting the world he would earn the gratitude of all men, but before long he would announce that he was a kind of Christ, and would compel men to worship him.  We called him the antichrist.  But at the climax of the power of this evil creature, Christ was to return to the earth in actual fact to set up His Kingdom on earth.


“The last days are almost certainly upon you.  Both antichrist and Christ will really come as the Bible foretold.  You have got to decide whether you are on God’s side or on the side of the world that rejected Him, and still rejects Him.  If you turn to Him now He will save you from the consequences of your evil deeds.  In the New Testament you will even learn of a plan by which you may be delivered from the things that are coming to pass on earth.  You may not have much longer to decide; don’t fool yourselves into thinking that anything else is more important than this.  Remember, it is Christ’s promise that if you come to Him, He will not cast you out


The man has gone.  We sit gazing blankly into space.  Is there just a chance – perhaps - that this man was right?  Is his story only a phantasy?








What of Christian believers as this age of grace hurries to its close?  The book of Revelation is addressed to us of the churches, and through us to the world and to the Jew.  Consequently the church messages in chapter 3 are vitally important.  The last four churches exist concurrently almost to the end of the age.  It would appear that three of them have to pass into the fiery purifying furnace of the great tribulation period.  From chapter 17 we learn that Thyatira is to enjoy a brief ascendancy in league with “the beast,” when her old persecuting spirit comes again into action.  Then she in turn is persecuted and in “great tribulation  Sardis is the sleepy church, living on her past and her reputation.  It looks as though the tribulation will find her unprepared and unsuspecting till the blow falls.  Unless she watches, the thief-like coming of the Lord to catch way His treasure, will leave her to be rudely awakened by it.


In Philadelphia the saints, including faithful ministers of the Gospel, missionaries and intercessors, are the Lord’s ambassadors, strangers and pilgrims on the earth, who will be recalled to His immediate, presence before His judgments are outpoured upon His enemies.  In fact, the impression deepens that the first sign that this age of grace has closed and the Lord is about to manifest His power in a public and unmistakable way, will be the “escape” - the translation - of the Philadelphian Church.  How wonderful, should this prove to be the case!  While it is just as clear that Laodicea, the church of the apostasy, has to be purified and many from that church restored in the fiery trials of the great tribulation.


If these things be so, and we are living on the threshold of them, what a call they make to “watch,” to “prayto “be sober” and “diligent that ye (we) may be found of Him in peace, without spot and blameless


In this, country a strangle hold is being forged over enterprise and liberty through the policy of nationalising trade and industry.  Both personal initiative and responsibility are thus being seriously threatened.  While not wishing to judge the motives or the wisdom of increasing government control in our national life, it is easy to realise that this is preparing for and playing into the hands of the coming world ruler.  He will seek to coerce men and nations, partly by fear and display of power, and partly by the machinery of registration and centralisation, so that “no man might buy or sell, save he that bath the mark, or the number of the beast, or the number of his name  There is grave development of this feature.


Are we fearful, or anxious, with danger near?  Are we perplexed over the strangeness of the way?  The Lord’s word for each one of us, his own blood-bought children, both writer and readers, is “TRUST ME  It is not honouring to our Lord to be despondent or pessimistic, even over material losses, and if the old order of our national life be overturned and evil seem to triumph.  Such an attitude is to give place to the devil, one of whose most effective weapons is to depress and to terrify.  Does not the Lord say, “In the world ye shall have tribulation, but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”  He tells us also, “When these things begin to come to pass (as at this present time), then look up, and lift up your heads, for your redemption draweth nigh.” So for the Christian who is walking with his Lord and watching unto prayer, there should arise a great hope and a comforting assurance that all is well.  “The night is far spent, the day is at hand  “Our citizenship is in heaven, from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ  So that we may “rejoice in hope of the glory of God  What a prospect!  For the darker the night, the nearer we are to the dawning of heaven’s perfect day.








The Holy Spirit has expressed, in one vivid phrase, exactly what prophecy is:- “a lamp shining in a dark place” (2 Pet. 1: 19).


The world is in profound blackness; the human race is heading for horrors of which they are totally unaware; and prophecy - the revealing of things to come - is a blazing searchlight which uncovers both the dangers ahead and the path by which we can escape them.  Never did the Church so need this lamp.  Thousands of Christians suppose prophecy to be so difficult, so unintelligible, so obscure that it is, they think, itself a darkness to be avoided: on the contrary, it is a blazing lamp, carrying exactly the right light for a midnight pilgrimage.  God lit this lamp; and no man ever put out a lamp of God without plunging himself into dangerous midnight.




At this moment we are witnessing extraordinary confirmation of what is coming.  All prophecy culminates in the Kingdom of God on earth, followed later by the dissolution of the universe.  Science foresaw, and now actually produces, such dissolution.  Years ago, before the War, at a meeting of the British Association in Edinburgh it was stated that such is the convulsive power stored in nature that atoms might blow up the universe, which would disappear in flaming gas.  Now see prophecy:- “The heavens that now are, and the earth, are stored up” - kept in careful preserve for the specific object, “FOR FIRE” (2 Pet. 3: 7); and are now discovered to be actually containing that fire.  The Spirit then reveals the dissolving worlds.  “The heavens” - hall pass away with a great noise”‑a crashing roar (Lange) – “and the elements” - the elementary particles, the atoms, “shall be dissolved with fervent heat” - the liberation and ignition of gases under white-hot heat – “and the earth and the works that are therein shall be burned up  The penetrating nature of the fire will in every atom is very awful.  “Japanese doctors said they were quite unable to deal with burns from the great flash of the bomb, or with the other physical ailments caused by it.  Some of them said they thought that all who had been in Hiroshima that day would die from the lingering effects of the bomb.  They said people who had been lightly injured lost 86 per cent. of their white blood corpuscles, developed temperatures of 104, began to lose their hair, vomited blood, and then died.  One witness of the bombing said ‘everything had been scorched to the ground, everything that still lived was waiting to die’” (Times, Sep. 6, 1945).




Already we have indications of the final God-sent atomic bombs.  “In those days, after that tribulation, the stars shall be falling from heaven” (Mark 13: 24): “The stars of the heaven fell unto the earth” (Rev. 6: 13). Professor Berbert Dingle says (Spectator, Aug. 24, 1945):‑“The meteorite fall which occurred in Siberia in 1908, with more destructive energy than that of an atomic bomb, may be repeated at any time, and it was no contrivance of ours that it did not occur in London or New York.  The annihilating power of this fire from heaven has already been proved in history  “Then the fire of the Lord” - that is, a peculiar fire, coming from the Deity - “fell, and consumed the wood, and the STONES, and the dust” (1 Kings 18: 38).  So the present heavens and earth will be totally annihilated: “earth and the heaven fled away, and there was found NO PLACE for them” (Rev. 20: 11).


The Purpose of the Revelation


So now we arrive at the throbbing heart of prophecy.  “Seeing that these things are thus all to be dissolved” - that is, basing your conduct absolutely on these appalling prophecies – what manner of twice the moral is brawn, that we may not miss it.  “Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for these things, give diligence that ye may be found” - found by the returning Christ - “in peace, WITHOUT SPOT AND BLAMELESS in his sight  This at once unveils the judgment Seat.  For every child of God the vital element in prophecy is how he will be ‘found’ by Christ: to be discovered ‘without spot and blameless’ is no mere fruit of salvation: this marvellous possibility is the product solely of unceasing diligence: give diligence that ye may be so found.  As a child of eternity (every one of us can say): I want a purer heart, a more melted spirit; I want a lowlier mind, a more sensitive penitence; I want a sweeter temper, a quicker love, a richer grace.




Actual life gives proof, in the lives of God’s saints, of the effect of prophecy.  “There is nothing left to the faithful,” says Calvin, “but with wakeful mind to be always intent on His second coming  “Ardently,” says Rutherford, “I desire the day of Christ.  I half call His absence cruel - oh, when shall we meet  “I am daily waiting,” said Whitefield, “for the coming of the Son of God  “Each morning,” said Horatius Bonar, “as I hear the birds twittering outside my bedroom window, I wonder if the Trumpet will break in upon their song.” “I never lay my head on the pillow,” says Dr. Campbell Morgan, “without thinking that may be before the morning breaks, the final morning may have dawned.  I never begin my work in the morning without thinking that perhaps He may interrupt my work and begin His own  “There is no remedy for all this mass of misery,” said Lord Shaftesbury, who did more, than most men to alleviate that misery, “but in the return of our Lord Jesus Christ.  Why do we not plead for it every time we hear the clock strike


The crucial and final fact in prophecy lies in what it has not revealed. “The day of the Lord will come AS A THIEF” (2 Pet. 3: 10): no warning, no dating, no time for preparation: the sole safety lies in unceasing readiness. “MY SOUL LOOKETH FOR THE LORD MORE THAN WATCHMEN LOOK FOR THE MORNING” (Psa. 130: 6).






“Pressed out of measure … above strength  (2 Cor. 1: 8 (A.V.).


“Exceedingly, beyond power, we were weighed down(2 Cor. 1: 8 (Rotherham).


“He measured … and brought me through.” (Ezek. 47: 3-4).



A measured life!  Whose measure can be true?

Weak human yards in inches can but fail

Remotely e’en to judge God’s threshing flail.

Mere human standards cannot sure construe

The balancing of clouds that blot the blue,

Divine intention in life’s chastisement,

The heavenly meaning in life’s trials sent,

Or plan the path or time of coming ‘through

For who can measure pressure? who but God

Can hold the scales exactly and not swerve

A hair’s-breadth from the true – appoint the rod –

Determine if I suffer or I serve?

‘Out of’, ‘above,’ ‘beyond’ all that I knew

I plunge, - to find He measured and ‘brought through








Probably no generation since our Lord ascended has had such urgent reasons as our own for praying for our Lord to come back, and as few, exceedingly few, will share in thus producing the vastest event this old earth will ever know, let us be among that few.  “GOD WORKS ACCORDING TO THE PRAYERS OF HIS PEOPLE” (Evan Roberts); and the date of the Advent is a loose end which prayer can affect: since God has made all His actions in this lower world to depend on faith and prayer, He may be depending on us for the Advent more than we dream.  “The Lord Himself,” in the words of Canon Simpson, “would never have bidden us pray, ‘Thy Kingdom come,’ if those seasons, which no man knows, were so irrevocably fixed that our efforts could not hasten, or our sins retard, the wheels of His chariot If the Jewish disciple, by praying that his flight may not be on the Sabbath or in winter (Matt. 24: 20), can so modify the date (if that flight as to change not only the day of the week but even the season of the year, much more is it in the power of the Church, and therefore our responsibility, to “HASTEN the coming of the day of God” (2 Pet. 3: 12, marg.).


The Holy Ghost


First we learn what is the mind of the Holy Ghost.  “The Spirit and the Bride say, Come” (Rev. 22: 17).  It is (as far as I know) the only recorded prayer of the Holy Ghost: He Who prays “with groanings which cannot be uttered” (Rom. 8: 26), when they are uttered, their summary is, COME.  The significance of this is extraordinary.  The Spirit has a myriad ways of affecting the world for good, yet His prayer is, Come: He knows perfectly all evolution, all progress, all revival, all Gospel advance, yet His prayer is, Come: He knows the inexhaustible resources, the unrevealed powers, the lost secret plans of God, yet His prayer is, Come.  The Holy Ghost knows no solution to the problem of the universe except the Second Advent of Christ; and it is His own supreme prayer; thus the fuller we are of the Spirit of God, the surer we are to pray His prayer.


Our Saviour


Next we learn the mind of our Lord. He says: “When ye pray, say, Thy kingdom come” (Matt. 6: 10).  “This, more than ever in these last days, ought to be the first and last of the Church’s prayers; for all that she desires for herself, for the world, and for her Lord Himself, is comprised in this” (Dr. H. Bonar).  We are apt to see men to the exclusion of mankind; when we pray for the Kingdom, we plead for thirty generations against one; for God will amputate a single generation - and that only after countless pleadings in grace and judgment - to save an entire race.  It is the most practical of all possible prayers, for there is no other way whereby the world’s political and social salvation can be wrought, and God’s love for the world at last fulfilled.  “There is no remedy,” as Lord Shaftesbury, who wrought more social amelioration for his generation than any other man, said, “for all this mass of misery, but in the return of our Lord Jesus Christ.  Why do we not plead for it every time we hear the clock strike


The Apostles


Next we learn the mind of the Apostles.  Jesus says, “Yea, I come quickly “Amencries John: I accept the doctrine, I hold fast the promise, I rejoice in the speed: “Come, Lord Jesus” (Rev. 22: 20).  It is the last prayer from an apostle’s lips; it is the last and crowning prayer of the Bible; it is the last prayer of the last apostle of the Lamb: the whole canon of inspiration closes with a direct appeal to Christ to come.  “There may be many years of hard work before the consummation, but the signs are to me so encouraging that I would not be unbelieving if I saw the wing of the apocalyptic angel spread for its last triumphant flight in this day’s sunset; or if to-morrow morning the ocean cables should thrill us with the news that Christ the Lord had alighted on Mount Olivet to proclaim universal dominion.  O you dead Churches, wake up!  O Christ, descend!  Scarred temple, take the crown!  Bruised hand, take the sceptre!  Wounded foot, step the throne!  “Thine is the Kingdom” (Dr. Talmage).  It is John’s last prayer, and happy shall we be if, falling asleep, it is the last prayer upon our lips also.


The Church


Next we learn the mind of the Apostolic Church.  “The Spirit and the Bride say, Come” (Rev. 22: 17).  In all sections of the Church this prayer has never ceased down all the ages; yet only when John wrote did the Bride, as a whole, thus pray.  “Surely I come quickly,” says Sir Robert Anderson, “are Christ’s last recorded words, but their fulfilment awaits the response of His people, ‘Amen; come, Lord Jesus There is not a Church in Christendom that would corporately pray that prayer to-day Foreseeing this, how impressive it is that the Holy Spirit immediately adds: “And he that heareth” - he who has the hearing ear because he has the overcoming life – “let him say, Come IT IS A PRAYER PUT UPON OUR LIPS BY DIVINE COMMAND; that is, when corporate praying fails, infinitely more urgent becomes the individual prayer; and even if the corporate prayer continues, God is not content unless each adds his own “Come.”* Therefore every interpretation of prophecy which excludes this prayer as wrong or inappropriate or inopportune is self-condemned; every argument which silences it blocks the praying of the Holy Ghost through us; and every shrinking from it in our own heart is a work of the flesh.  “Hardly had our Lord reached the threshold of the House of the Father than He shouted back, Surely I come quickly; nor does the Church enter into the rapture of her hopes until she brings herself to respond, ‘Amen; even so come  Lord Jesus’” (Dr. Seiss).  In the words of MeCheyne “The day is breaking in the east.  Oh, brethren, do you know what it is to long for Himself - to cry, Make haste, my Beloved


[* “This word to the hearer will remain in full force even after the watchful of the Church or the whole Church are borne away.  Jesus’ coming is, to Israel also, the great point of hope.” - Govett.]




Next we learn our own need.  All holy and Scriptural desire is legitimate fuel for prayer; and it is our peril so to be concerned with the doctrine of the Advent that we forget the prayer.  In twenty-four volumes of the “Quarterly Journal of Prophecy” (1849 to 1873) there is not a single article on prayer for the Coming.  Is it nothing to us that our Lord wishes to come back?  Why is He coming quickly if it is not the speed of desire? “Many Christians do not realise that the Lord is waiting until He is invited by His own to return: we may need to be urged; He does not” (W. Lincoln).  And if our conscience cows us with the danger at the Judgment Seat of a soul only partially ready, let us meet that real difficulty by daily offering a simultaneous prayer - that we may be made so deeply prepared in life and character as to be able to see Him in fulness of joy.  It is a self-purifying prayer.*  Let us learn to say, in the golden words of the old Puritan, Baxter: “Hasten, O my Saviour, the time of Thy return!  Delay not, lest the living give up their hopes; delay not, lest earth should grow like hell and Thy Church be crumbled to dust.  Oh, hasten that great resurrection day when the graves that received but rottenness, and retain but dust, shall return Thee glorious stars and suns.  Thy desolate Bride saith, Come. The whole creation, saith, Come, even so, Come, Lord Jesus As a friend once wrote me:- “I always feel when one sings Miss Havergal’s beautiful hymn – ‘Thou art coming, O my Saviour,’ that I want to prostrate myself on the earth and weep for sheer joy


[* 1 John 3: 3.  Be it also remembered that the rapture, the first act of God’s response, may precipitate life in the very souls unsaved on whose behalf our anxiety might make us hesitate to pray the prayer.]


The Creation


Finally, we learn the unconscious mind of the world.  “The whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain,” waiting “for the revealing of the sons of God” (Rom. 8: 19).  “Can you say, ‘More than they that wait for the morning, my soul waiteth for Thee  Does your heart leap when you think that the Christ, ever present, is drawing near to us?  All the signs of the times, intellectual and social: the rottenness of much of our life; the abounding luxury, the hideous vice that flaunts un-blamed or un-abased before us: all these things cry out to Him, whose ear is not deaf  -  even if our voice does not join in the cry – and beseech Him to come” (Dr. Alexander Maclaren).  For all the creation needs can be met only by the Advent.  “In this prayer is summed up all that the Christian heart can desire – the destruction of the power of Satan; the deliverance of the creature from the bondage of corruption; the banishment of sin and sorrow from the individual heart and from the world; the restoration of all things; the establishment of the kingdom of righteousness; the beholding of Jesus in fullness of the travail of His soul, the bestowment upon Him in completeness of His promised reward.  Let each member of the Church militant unite with the Apostle in the longing cry – ‘Amen; Come, Lord Jesus’” (Dr. E. R. Craven).  Says Bishop J. C. Ryle: “Come, Lord Jesus, should be our daily prayer  Shall we not make a compact together that, so long as breath lasts, we will, without a single day’s intermission, pray, “EVEN SO, COME, LORD JESUS”?






I often say my prayers,

But do I ever pray?

And do the wishes of my heart

Go with the words I day?


I may as well kneel down

And worship gods of stone,

As offer to the living God

A prayer of words alone.


For words without the heart

The Lord will never hear;

Nor will He to those lips attend

Whose prayers are not sincere.


Lord, teach me what I need,

And teach me how to pray;

And do not let me seek Thy grace,

Hot meaning what I say.


JOHN BURTON, 1803-77.





“Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him that loved us” – Romans 8: 37.


When you are forgotten or neglected, when you are pushed constantly aside, and you submit to it, thank the Lord for the humbling – this is victory!


When the good you do, or intend, is slandered, when your wishes are crossed, when your taste is offended, your advice despised, your opinions laughed at, and you take it all quietly in love and patience – this is victory.


When with any kind of food or clothing, with any climate, any company, any position in life, or state of loneliness into which the Lord may lead you, you are content – this is victory.


When every ill-humour in others, every complaint, every irregularity and unpunctuality, while not condoning, you can bear without anger – this is victory.


When every foolishness, perverseness, even spiritual unfeelingness, every contradiction of sinners and every persecution you can meet and bear – this is victory.


If you are not concerned to bring yourself or your works into conversation or to look for commendation, if you are truly willing to remain unknown – this is victory.