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I grieve that our brave and heroic troops should be sent to bleed and fall on distant shores ; I grieve over the existence of war; but I believe that the war now provoked by the ambition of the Russian Autocrat, and accepted by our country, is a war, not only of policy, but of justice, of truthfulness, of mercy. The guilt rests on Russia. I pity the infatuated Autocrat; may his punishment be signal, or his repentance speedy! May his ambition meet with reward! May he learn in the Kremlin that justice and truth and mercy are stronger than Cossacks, and more enduring than armed battalions ; ' and whilst our intrepid soldiers on the land, and our brave sailors on the Baltic and the Black Sea, inspired by a sense of the justice of their cause, are battling not only for mercy to the oppressed, but for protection to our dear native land, whilst they, like Joshua, are warring in the plains below, let us, like Moses, lift up our hearts and hands, and pray that He “to whom the shields of the earth belong," would uphold and bless the banners of the right. • We have no sympathy with the Koran, no desire to uphold the Mosque, no wish to see the Osmanli strike deeper, or extend wider his withering footprint. But we have no less dread of autocratic tyranny, and of the lust of power. Acquiescence in this matter would be connivance. It would not avert ultimate war. We pray that the Prince of Peace may soon spread his love and law over all the earth.
THE CHRISTIAN, AND HIS HOPE.
I EXPECT that some, especially those who have not studied the subject, will dissent from the conclusions which I have carefully, prayerfully, and humbly gathered from God's most holy word; but when I present the views or deductions that seem right, I hope I shall state them with simplicity, with all absence of dogmatism, and with humble submission to the authority of the Holy Spirit, speaking in his own word, which will at least commend the spirit in which I speak, if it do. not make good the conclusions to which I have arrived. On truths indispensably essential to vital religion we may speak with explicit and unqualified confidence, but on unfulfilled prophecy we must speak humbly, deferentially, often doubtingly, treading with tenderness and caution, bearing in mind distinctly and plainly the great and blessed truths on which we do agree, and taking heed to them as unto stars shining in a dark night, until the Sun of Righteousness arises with perfect healing under his wings.
The personal coming of our blessed Lord in glory, the hope of the Christian, does appear to
me as no less clearly revealed in God's holy word than was the personal advent of the Saviour, to be sacrificed for the sins of all. All Christians believe that Christ will come again; but some think that he will come previous to the millennial glory; others, that he will come at the close of the millennial glory. It rests with each investigator of God's holy word to decide whether that advent shall be pre-millennial or post-millennial, and what shall be the accompaniments of that glorious day when he shall come again a second time without sin unto salvation.
Let me briefly bring before your notice a few of the texts that allude to the second coming of our Lord, and you will at once see how frequently the subject is introduced in prophecy. Acts iïi. 19,“When the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord; and he shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you: whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began.” Matt. xxiv. 30, — “And they shall see the Son of Man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.” Matt. xxv. 31,2" 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 the sheep from the goats.” 2 Thess. i. 7,—“The Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, in flaming fire, taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Acts i. 11,_"This same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.” Luke xii. 40,—“The Son of man cometh in an hour when ye think not." Again,—“The day of the Lord cometh as a thief in the night.” Again, Matt. xxiv. 27,- "For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of Man be.” 1 Thess. iv. 16, - The Lord shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first; then we which 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 be ever with the Lord.” And again, in Dan. vii. 14, — " There was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, and nations, and languages should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed.” Let me call your attention also to Titus ii. 14,— "Looking for that blessed hope, and the appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ.” This passage is wrongly translated; for the great God our Father is never said to appear a second time; it is, literally rendered, “That blessed hope, that glorious per
sonal appearance of Jesus Christ, our great God and Saviour;" where our Redeemer is called the great God and Saviour. When he comes a second time, then “we shall see him as he is;" we shall reign with him in heaven, we shall dwell with him in glory. The attitude of the Church in the present dispensation is that of the bride looking for the bridegroom, and nothing will satisfy the bride but the bridegroom; nothing will comfort the waiting widow but the presence of the everlasting husband. The great high priest of the Jewish nation was a perfect type of Christ. What was his office at their great and solemn feast? He offered up sacrifice, and then went into the Holy of Holies to make intercession for the people, and then he came forth from the Holy of Holies and blessed the people. Now, our great High Priest exactly corresponds to theirs. He has offered up a perfect sacrifice once for all without the camp, and is now in the Holy of Holies, in heaven itself, where he makes intercession for us. But what was the attitude of the Jewish people when the high priest was in the Holy of Holies? They were waiting for him to come forth to bless them. What is to be our attitude while our great High Priest, having offered up the sacrifice, is in the true holy place ? Unlike the Roman Catholic, we should not continue to offer the sacrifice, but we should now be waiting on the tiptoe of expectation for our great High Priest to come forth to bless us from the Holy of Holies. It is alike the Christian's duty and privilege to look