Sunday, December 29, 2013
Christ is Ever With You
There were two farewells of our Lord on earth, and they formed two of the most touching and instructive epochs of His history. As the sun, setting amid a flood of liquid gold, invests the whole heavens with variegated tints of beauty long after the majestic orb has run its race, so there clustered around the two earthly sunsets of Christ, the most divine assurances, the most precious promises, the most brilliant hopes that ever shed their light and glory upon the pathway of the Christian Church; and which will linger upon its spiritual sky in deathless splendor until He comes again in His glory to set no more forever.
The first farewell of Christ, was when He parted from His disciples on His return to heaven. To them, it was a time of inexpressible grief. To part with Christ was to part with their all. Yet He would not leave them comfortless; nor will He, beloved, ever so leave you. Blended with His departure was the most precious promise and the most costly gift Heaven could bestow or the Church receive; the promise and gift of the Holy Spirit, as the Comforter, Teacher, and Indweller of the Church: "If I depart — I will send the Comforter." What an hour of blessing was this! What a glorious setting of the Sun of righteousness! What spiritual benedictions, what resplendent hopes gather, like a glowing halo, around the sinking of this Divine Orb!
And still the glow lingers. And still the setting rays tinge with unfading light and glory, the gloomy clouds which often drape in woe earth's pilgrimage. We have abiding with, and dwelling in, us the Holy Spirit the Comforter, sent of Christ, to lead us to Christ, to testify of Christ, to assimilate us to Christ, and to sanctify us to dwell with Christ forever! Oh, could the personal departure of our Lord have been blessed and graced with an assurance more transcendentally great, precious, and glorious than this?
Our Lord's second farewell was when He closed the sacred canon of Scripture, fencing it with the most solemn warning, and sealing it with the most illustrious promise. And, as the threatening of woe to those who should either take from, or add to, the perfect Word of God, resounded solemnly on the ear, it was succeeded and softened by words which will live and linger in the sweetest cadence until the promise they contain shall be fulfilled: "Behold, I come quickly!"
John 14:16 ... And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;
Revelation 22:12 ... And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.
Matthew 28:20 ... Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.❤