"This is the resting place, let the weary rest; and this is the place of repose"—

"He who testifies to these things says, 'Yes, I am coming soon.'" Revelation 22:20

No one had so enjoyed the privilege of sitting under the shade of the Divine Heavenly Palm as the writer of this Book of Revelation, the apostle John. No wonder that he should sigh and long for a renewal of the personal presence and fellowship of his ascended Lord —and that the well-known keynote of his last writing—the farewell inspired legacy to believers of the future, should be, "The Lord is coming!" Again, and again and again (four times in the one chapter from which our motto-verse is taken) do these notes sound in the ears of a waiting, expectant Church. First, in verse 7, "Behold, I come quickly." Second, in verse 12, "Behold, I come quickly, and My reward is with Me." Third, in verse 17, where 'the Coming One' had beautifully announced Himself as "The Bright and Morning Star;" the response—the longing prayer rises in blended harmony from the Church on earth and the Church in heaven: "And the Spirit and the Bride say, Come." Once more, in verse 20, the last audible voice of the Great Redeemer, until that voice be heard on the Throne—gives, too, the assurance of His speedy coming. We close the Divine record with this "blessed hope," like a rainbow of promise spanning the sky of the future, "He which testifies these things says, 'SURELY I COME QUICKLY.'"

We may appropriately compare these repeated references in the last Book of the Bible, to the ringing of the chimes with quickening peal, as the worshipers are gathering to take their places in the Heavenly Temple.

The prospect of that promised Advent put music of old into the lips of Patriarchs and Psalmists, Apostles and Prophets. "Let the heavens rejoice, let the earth be glad…before the Lord: for He comes, He comes to judge the earth." "The Lord my God shall come, and all the saints with you." The Apostle Peter, like a watcher on cliff or tower, eager to catch the earliest beam of sunrise, speaks of "looking for, and hastening unto, the coming of the day of God." "Looking for that blessed hope," says Paul, "even the glorious appearing of the Great God our Savior." "I am persuaded," says the same in one of his dying utterances, "that He is able to keep that which I have committed unto Him against that day." By the Great Lord Himself, believers are represented as servants, cheerfully working on, during their Master's absence; but all alert for the sound of His footsteps, that, "when He comes and knocks, they may be ready to open unto Him immediately."

As we now listen in the message at the head of this meditation to the last voice of the Great 'Testifier'—the last toll of the Advent bell, let it sound to us like strains of seraphic music floating on a midnight sea. Let it proclaim in our ears blended comfort and warning; tempering prosperity, mitigating adversity, moderating the world's ambitions, stimulating to holiness, preparing for heaven.

Whatever may be the antecedent or intervening events described in the other parts of the Apocalypse—events in which, whether as regards the Church or individuals, we are, doubtless, deeply interested—let "the Second Coming" tower above them all, like some colossal Alp, with plain and valley and lowlier mountain between, but rising peerless in the blue horizon, its top golden with heavenly sunlight; and from its eternal snows and hidden springs, sending forth ten thousand streams of hope and joy.

Bright and Morning Star! Harbinger of eternal day! Who will not bid You welcome? Who will not help, in the noblest sense, to "Ring in the Christ that is to be"?

"The Spirit says, COME!" The Divine Agent, whose own "coming" as the Paraclete or Comforter, was declared by the departing Savior to more than compensate the Church for her Redeemer's absence, hails the advent which is to crown and consummate His own work as "the Glorifier of Christ."

"The Bride says, COME," the ransomed Church on earth, longing for the bridal day of perfected bliss—the ransomed Church in heaven, saints, martyrs, departed friends, who have fallen asleep in Jesus—take up the antiphonal strain, and cry "COME!"—A groaning creation, weary of the bondage of sin and sorrow, and longing for liberty, cries "COME!" Can we take up one of the multiplying echoes, and, uniting our prayer with the sons of God, give willing response to the Apostle's closing invocation: "And let him who hears say COME?" Can we include ourselves in the words of another 'Watcher' for this Day-spring. "For the Lord Himself shall descend from Heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so shall we ever be with the Lord!" "Therefore," he adds, Waiting Pilgrims! seat yourselves in calm expectancy under the shade of this choice Elim-Palm—let the glorious outlook cheer, refresh, and solace you—"Therefore, encourage each another with these words!"

"His voice on earth we did not hear;
His steps below we could not trace;
But when His glory shall appear,
We too shall meet Him face to face.

"So surely as the leaves and flowers
In summer time come back again—
So surely as in sultry hours
The dark clouds bring the pleasant rain.

"Shall He, who, in His lowly love,
Came down that we might be forgiven,
Break, glorious, through the clouds above,
And take His children home to heaven."

"My soul waits for the Lord more than watchmen wait for the morning, more than watchmen wait for the morning."

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