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The judgment is a great and solemn event to which the world is swiftly hastening. Soon the thoughtless millions of earth will be called to halt from their mad rush for gold, and then they'll discover that the deceptive bubble has, at last, evaded their grasp. Standing in the light of a blazing world and beholding the heavens wrapped in sheets of fire, poor sinners will understand, and that too late, that the door of mercy has closed to be opened no more forever. The judgment is the next great coming event, and it'll mark the final chapter of earthly activities. The path from the cradle to the grave is short. Measured in the light of all time, the earthly life of man is but a flickering flame, a tiny spark, a flash of fire. But that's not all of life. It's but the least noteworthy of some lives---of the lives of those who were truly great. They live on. We live not only in time, but we shall exist throughout all eternity. The sum total of all the world has today, of all civilization, all knowledge, all love, all happiness, all understanding, all the joys and comforts and pleasures of existence, are the fruits of lives lived before, humans who have gone on, beings who existed, struggled, developed, drove ahead, and left a better world behind them when they entered the tomb, a happier human family, a more desirable existence for their children and their children's children. The deeds that men do live after them, and the sum total of those deeds determines the record they must meet upon the judgment day. We'll now proceed to give five reasons why the judgment day will be the greatest day in the history of man.
 
The Greatest Assemblage of All Time...
 
The greatest concourse of people that ever assembled will meet together upon the judgment day. The signal will be the trump of God. "For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God." I've tried to picture in my mind what the bugle's blast will be like, whether loud and deep, like the thunder as it rolls along among the threatening clouds, or like the shrill, clarion notes of the Alpine bugler, whose sounds echo and reverberate among a thousand hills. Whatever that call of God may be like, it matters not; for we know its voice will be sufficient to awake the sleeping dead.
 
People expressed surprise in Jesus' day at his teaching, and upon a certain occasion he increased their bewilderment by exclaiming: "Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, and shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation." (John 5:28, 29) What an awful sight to behold all of Adam's posterity gathered together in one great crowd, with not a straggler left behind! The lone traveler who perished while in search of the north pole, and the men whose bones lie glistening beneath a tropical sun, will together hear the trumpet's sound and arise from their beds of heat and cold. That voice shall penetrate the great Westminister Abby, the burial place of kings and poets; and the infamous King Henry VIII and Bloody Queen Mary, together with Gladstone and Edith Cavell, and all those who sleep in all the cemeteries of earth, shall hear that voice and shall obey its call.
 
One time the writer visited one of the greatest cemeteries in the world, and it was evening. The summer's sun was setting behind the western sky, and long shadows were lengthening out upon the plains. All around me were tombs and monuments. I thought of that great upheaval which will take place when God shall speak from the skies, and I said to myself, How idle a boast is the immortality of a name or the perpetuity of an embalmment, for at the command of God every grave will give up its dead! I thought also of Moses, whom the angels buried away in the land of Moah, that his body would also come forth and take its place before the judgment seat of Christ. The mummified bodies of those who lived in other days, who now lie in state in museums or catacombs, upon that day will burst their ancient wrappings and stand up to be judged by the great God of heaven and earth.
 
The sea also shall give up its dead. Down among the coral reefs of the ocean, where the petrified bodies of Christian and pirate lie, that voice shall reach. The bodies of those who went down with the Titanic, the Lusitanina, the Slocum, the Eastland, and every other wreck at sea, will hear that trumpet call and arise from their watery graves. Oh, awful day, when the unnumbered dead shall arise from their beds of dust! when granite mausoleums shall burst asunder! and all Christians, all murderers, and those murdered, upon whatsoever seas, or under whatsoever skies, shall meet before the King of kings and the Lord of lords! Daniel declared that the multitude of those who sleep in the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.
 
Time Shall Be No Longer...
 
The ceaseless flight of time has been the subject of much reflection in the midst of serious men in all ages. Essays, poems, proverbs have been written expressing the sentiments awakened in reflective minds as they heheld the onward course of the great river of time, bearing on its bosom all things mortal. Time has been the most victorious conqueror of all ages. Before his scythe the strong form has bowed and been laid low. The sword that carved out ancient empires has become useless and rusty by the hand of Time. No man has written his name so high in the temple of earthly fame and glory but that Time shall cause it to perish. Man has built monuments on the earth: cities intended by those who built them to endure always, have been changed by Time in his onward march. The drifting sands of the desert are now blown across the places where once proud capitals of empires stood. Man has by his intellect and genius bound the mighty giant Steam and compelled him to work. He's harnessed the invisible forces of electricity and can turn on or off its current as he pleases: but before the onward course of Time, he's helpless. Not for a moment will time pause in his flight, though the efforts of all things mortal were concentrated upon that one purpose.
 
But though Time won't heed the beseeching cries of mortals, he instantly acknowledges the commands of Him who inhabits eternity. God who carved the fration time out of infinite eternity, has determined its end, and soon he'll commission his angels to stand upon the sea and land and swear that time shall be no longer. How solemn the mind becomes as we approach the limits of time and view the portals of great eternity! Time no longer! To the unsaved this must be particularly solemn. Time has been full of God-given opportunities for men to prepare for the ushering in of eternity. Christ has, for long ages, sat upon the throne of mercy. The fountain filled with blood has been freely opened for sin and uncleaness. The Spirit of God has pleaded mightily at the door of men's hearts. The gates of paradise have stood ajar. The star of hope will always shine while time lasts; there's few human hearts over whom its rays aren't shed. Hope lives long and dies hard in the realm of time; but when that mighty angel shall have lifted his hand to heaven, for those who are still unsaved the star of hope will have forever set. In place of its elevating influence, the dark pall of eternal despair will cast its gloomy shadow across the sinner's sky. In dark waters of remorse the human soul will sink downward.
 
What we know of sin's effects during time foreshadows the fearful depths of suffering that await the guilty one in vast eternity. The cessation of time will open the flood-gates for those waters to flow in upon the soul forever. No hope, no comfort, no love, no light, no peace, no joy, no bright tomorrow, no sweet by and by: but dark despair, wretched remorse, a lashing conscience, demons, and, worse than all else, the eye of an engry God---these things, and even more, will fill up the sinner's existence in the dungeons of hell, when time has completed its couse and eternity has begun. Oh, eternity! thou ageless age! upon whose broad expanse ten thousand ages are but foam. Eternity! No ages to count, no cycles to roll around, no infant days or old age, and no end! Oh, my God! what has eternity instore for me? What pain, what sorrow, what remorse? or what joys, what happiness hast thou in store for me when time shall have run its course?
When time ends, every clock in the universe will stop, and every human heart will cease to beat. The Indian will stop chasing the deer, (grin) and the miser will stop counting his gold; the plow will be left in the field with the furrow unturned, and the woman will drop her broom---and all will hasten to the judgment bar of God. The poor neglecter will stand aghast when he beholds the door of mercy closed never to be opened again. There'll be no loved one to greet the sinner in the dark regions of despair; for maternal love, paternal pity, and brotherly consolation will never be known in that land of demons and moral outlaws. Oh, God, help men and women to place a more proper estimate upon the value of time an opportunity while time still exists!
 
The World Shall Burn Up...
 
Jesus said, "Heaven and earth shall pass away." And Peter exclaimed: "The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is long-suffering toward us, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with frevent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness. Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with frevent heat?" (2 Pet. 3:9-12)
 
The story's told of a man who built a frame house in a place where great hurricanes ofttimes swept across the plains, He'd been warned time and again, but to no avail. One day, without warning the storm came on. The family fled to a sod house just in time to see the former structure scattered by the wind. The storm increased its awful fury, and they ran to the cave in time to see the sod house also scattered across the plains. The storm still increased, and the water filled up the cave, and they were all driven out into the storm. Some lost their lives, and their property was all destroyed. It'll be the same upon that final judgment day. An awful storm of fire will sweep across the earth and sky. The poor sinner will have no place to go. He'll flee from his moral works, and the house of tradition will be destroyed. His refuge of lies shall be swept away, and naked he'll be forced to stand in the presence of Almight God. Oh, awful consternation! Men calling for rocks and mountains to hide them from the face of Him who sitteth upon the throne! But the rocks and mountains shall have fled away, and naked, destitue, with no one to plead their cause, poor sinners will meet their doom. Like one of old, thank God, I can say, "In the Rock of Ages I will hide me till the storm be overpast."
 
Man's Attitude Will Change...
 
Few, indeed, gave heed to the teaching of Jesus Christ when he walked the shores of Galilee. The sermons he preached on the mountian-sides of that eastern country were masterpieces, and twenty centuries of brained men haven't been able to add anything of worth to the rules and maxims he laid down in that long-ago age. He had no name, and his voice wasn't heard in the streets. He was a great man---the compassionate One, the friend of sinners---yet he wasn't appreciated. God declared at one time that Christ was his Son, and Jesus often declared himself to be the Son of God; but man couldn't be compelled to believe that it was true. Great men have arisen, like Cicer and Seneca, of Rome; Socrates and Plato, the philosophers; Raphael, the painter; Homer, the poet; Galilio, the astronomer; gladstone, the statesman; and George Washington, United States' first President, and we give them all the honor due their name and work. But the Bible says, concerning Christ, "Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father" (Phil. 2:9-11).
 
The judgment day won't only be the greatest day in all history from the simple standpoint of that great assemblage, but it'll be great because every man, woman, and child will be upon their knees. That mighty prayer-meeting won't be one of entreaty or supplication, but of acknowledgment, simply a giving of consent to the awful fact that they'd been mistaken, and that Jesus Christ is indeed the Son of God. Few saw him at his first appearing; but when he comes again "every eye shall see him," and the whole world will discover and acknowledge that Christ is King. The time to kneel and pray for mercy is now, for when the judgment day arrives it'll be too late.
 
God's Attitude Will Change...
 
There's no other name given under heaven whereby men can be saved but the name of Jesus Christ; on the day of judgment, however, Christ will lay off his mediatorial robes and put on those of a judge. He'll, on that day, assume the role of Judge of the Supreme Court. No mediator then shall be found, and, hence, no one can gain an audience with the great God. Christ will no longer be the Savior, but one of an offended Godhead. The books will all be brought in, and the world of mankind will be judged out of the things written. Man must then give an account to God, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit, and the Word of God, for the use made of time. "When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: and before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: and he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left. Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels. And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal." (Matt. 25:31-34, 41, 46)
Reader, what would be your condition if all these things should happen tonight? Prepare to meet they God!
 
The End...
 
All things upon this earth will have an end,
For of the dust were each and all things made:
The mighty oak that boweth not its head,
The earth, the sky, the flower, and tender blade.
The nightingale shall cease its pleasant song,
And place its head beneath its feathery wing;
The whippoorwill, that chants the evening long,
Will close its eye, no more on earth to sing.
The cattle grazing yonder on the plain
Will cease, and see a shelter where to rest;
The wildman, living in his house of cane,
Will watch the sun go sinking in the west.
The bride adorned with robes of spotless white,
With crimson cheek, and pulses beating fast,
With happy thoughts of future years---that night
Will ne'er mistrust that day on earth is past.
The murderer, low crouching in his cell,
Will think of youth, of home and mother dear;
Not thinking that so soon the flames of hell
Will blanch his cheek, and freeze his heart with fear.
The sun will kiss as usual the west,
And fling his smiling rays o'er land and sea;
And myriads on the earth will go to rest,
And dream of love, or wealth, and time to be.
But hark! what means that solemn trumpet call?
The sleeper wakes bedazed with such a sight;
"O rocks, O mountains, come and on me fall!
Oh, would to God I knew this were the night!"
The earth will reel and fall to rise no more,
The long, long day of mercy will be past;
The spotless bride of Jesus then will soar,
To lands where vernal flow'rs forever last.



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