Who Is That Man Dying In That Bed?

800px-Rudolf_Schiestl_(1878-1931)_-_Tod_von_Basel(Archibald Brown)

“What man can live and not see death, or save himself from the power of the grave?” Psalm 89:48

How few men meditate on their own death! “All men think all men mortal, but themselves!”

I was talking with a friend only this afternoon about the continual procession of funerals that goes past my house on a Sunday afternoon; and as we were talking I could not help saying to myself, “I find it so difficult to realize that I may be looking on the very hearse which before long will carry me!” 

Have you ever tried to look at your own death? It will do you no harm; so take up the Word of God, and read, “It is appointed for man to die once–and after that comes judgment!” Hebrews 9:27.

Do you see that man lying there on that bed? Do you hear how labored his breathing is? Do you see what big drops of sweat stand upon his brow? You take him by the hand, and he tries to speak to you–but he cannot. And there in the corner of the room you hear the suppressed sobbing of the wife as she folds her little child to her bosom. The dying man’s breath gets heavier, and the doctor says, “There is nothing more that I can do.” 

Do you know that man? Why, it is yourself!

“It is better to go to a house of mourning than to go to a house of feasting, for death is the destiny of every man; the living should take this to heart.” Ecclesiastes 7:2 

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What It Means To Be Saved?

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(Archibald Brown, “What Christ Has Done for Me!” 1872)

“Come and hear, all you who fear God, and I will declare what He has done for my soul!” Psalm 66:16

No one word can fully express all that God has done for my soul, though in general it may be described assaved. Saved! Ah, that is a grand word worthy of being written in letters of gold! A saved soul includes many things–I can only mention them:

1. A saved soul is a God-pardoned soul. All its sins are forgiven, and its iniquities are drowned in that deluge of pardoning love that rises high above the topmost peaks of all its mountain sins!

2. A saved soul is a God-reconciled soul. Once at enmity–God and the sinner are now at peace. All differences are at an end. The prodigal sinner has been embraced and kissed by the father. The rebel has thrown down his weapons, and bent his knee to the Monarch–and the Monarch has raised him up, and with a smile of love, has put him among His children. If I may so express it, God and the sinner have met and shaken hands beneath the shadow of the cross. They are at at-one-ment there.

3. A saved soul is also a sin-delivered soul. This is something more than pardon, or reconciliation. It is a higher blessing. Pardon remits the punishment of sin–but leaves the guilt of sin. But justification acquits the person of every charge. Believer, your sins are not merely forgiven–but they are done away with, put out of sight, removed from you as far as the remotest east is from the extreme west! In the eye of God, you are as guiltless as His spotless Son! “You are altogether beautiful, My love; there is no flaw in you!” Song of Songs 4:7

4. A saved soul is also a God-arrayed soul. This is higher still. The former blessing was a negation of guilt–this is a possession of righteousness. A righteousness, mark you, that is not capable of improvement–but a righteousness that is superlative in its quality–it is the righteousness of God Himself! A saved soul, even to the omniscient eye of Deity, is not only without spot or wrinkle or any such thing–but it is altogether lovely and glorious, robed in the splendor of “Jehovah Tsidkenu”–“The Lord our Righteousness!”

5. A saved soul is a Heaven-entitled soul. This crowns all. Not merely am I delivered from Hell–but in my hand is placed a title-deed to eternal glory! This is no fiction or flight of imagination–but a blessed fact. Possessed by every saint, is a title to Heaven that God Himself will declare to be valid to all eternity.

Now believer, if all these things are included in what God has done for our souls, then did I not say rightly that many words were necessary to describe the work? Let us then, as God-pardoned, God-reconciled, Sin-delivered, God-arrayed, Heaven-entitled souls–call on all, far and near, to come and listen to our joyous tale.

God looks upon His redeemed people as the masterpieces of His love and power, and He will before assembled worlds exhibit us as the grandest trophies Heaven contains!