Page:Anastasis A Treatise on the Judgment of the Dead.pdf/15

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.



who is in heaven (Matt. x. 32; Luke xii. 8–9); for the angels will be present at this assize, and will be attentive observers, approving the just and despising with ignominy those who loved the world and the things pertaining to it, more than "the truth as it is in Jesus." It can surely be only those whose consciences are not void of offence toward God and men, who contemplate their appearance in His presence with affright. They are, doubtless, conscious of disaffection and disloyalty to the truth; of not walking worthy of the vocation wherewith they are called; of conformity to the world upon the things of which their affections are placed, and of glorying in pursuits of which they ought rather to be ashamed. Professors who are making for themselves a record of this sort, have reason to be affrighted; for, "if any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him"; and the world's friends are God's enemies (1 John ii. 15; James iv. 4); hence, for such, the expectation of standing before Christ in full angelic assize, is "a certain fearful looking-for of judgment and fiery indignation which shall devour the adversaries" (Heb. x. 27). No marvel that they view this prospect with frantic repugnance, and declaim against it as a senseless conceit. But, what is the use of this? Bad words and rough speeches will not alter the predetermination of Deity. If it be His purpose to demand account from every one, of himself, before he confers upon him, through the Spirit, life everlasting, that purpose will assuredly stand. And that it is His pleasure so to do, is emphatically and explicitly taught in the word. Paul, who testifies it among others, did not view it with dismay, although he says that evil as well as good is then to be dispensed. He was conscious of having done well, and he knew that such would be accepted (Gen. iv. 7). Therefore, in view of the judgment, which made Felix tremble, he could joyfully exclaim, "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith; henceforth, there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give me in that day," when "He shall judge living and dead ones at his appearing and kingdom"; "and not to me only, but also to all who love the appearing" (2 Tim. iv. 1, 8). Surely, they who are keeping the faith, and earnestly desiring" the appearing of the glory of the great God and Saviour Jesus Christ," may view the judgment of that day, now so close at hand, as cheerfully. It is only evil doers that have reason to be afraid.

The consummation of the judgment of Christ's house indicates the epoch of the third and last stage of the raising process. This crisis is the quickening, by which resurrection is perfected. The analogy is found in nature, from which its divine Creator selects many pro-