(Samuel Davies, “A New Year’s Gift!” January 1, 1760)
“Knowing the TIME, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep!” Romans 13:11
TIME, like an ever-running stream, is perpetually gliding on–and hurrying each of us into the boundless ocean of eternity!
Consider the UNCERTAINTY of your time! You may die . . .
the next year,
the next month,
the next week,
the next hour, or
the next moment!
I once knew a minister who, while he was speaking on this same point–was made a striking illustration of it–and instantly dropped down dead in the pulpit!
You cannot call one day of this next year your own! Before that day comes, you may be done with time–and have entered upon eternity!
People presume upon time, as if it were guaranteed to them for so many years; and this is the delusion which ruins multitudes! How many are now in eternity, who began the last year with as little expectation of death, and hopes of long life–as you have at the beginning of the present year! And this may be your doom!
Should a prophet be sent to open the book of the divine decrees to you–as Jeremiah did to Hananiah; some of you would no doubt see it written there by your name, “This very year you are going to die!” Jeremiah 28:16. Some unexpected moment in this year–will put an end to all the labors and enjoyments of the present state, and all the duties and opportunities peculiar to it!
Therefore, if sinners would repent and believe–NOW is the time, because this is the ONLY time they are certain of! Sinners, you may be in hell before this year finishes its round–if you delay the great business of salvation any longer!
For remember, time is uncertain! Youth, health, strength, business, riches, power, wisdom, and whatever this world contains–cannot insure it. No, the thread of life is held by the divine hand alone; and God can snap it asunder, without warning, in whatever moment He pleases!
“It is appointed unto men once to die–and after that to face judgment!” Hebrews 9:27
Photo: A close up view of a cedar waxwing bird by David Menke, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
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