JOB 21

4 As for me, is my complaint to man? and if it were so, why should not my spirit be troubled?

We come to the Table of the Lord and get eased in our trouble. We even get to the point of being thankful for trouble. Trouble is good for us. It breaks the spell of this natural life, draws us nearer to God, and throws us more and more upon the Kingdom of God as our portion.

David speaks of some who are "not in trouble as other men are ... who have more than heart can wish." We may know of such, if we are wise we will not envy them. Even in a natural sense, they have not the joy in life they seem to have. Their very abundance is often a weariness. Things cease to please, and ennui afflicts. As Solomon says,

"The abundance of the rich will not suffer him to sleep, but the sleep of the laboring man is sweet."

And how calamitous is that situation of which Jesus has to say "How hardly" shall they who are in it enter the Kingdom. To the poor, the gospel is preached: "blessed" therefore, "be ye poor; yours is the Kingdom of God."

...They are truly well off who are poor in this world if they are rich in faith. But we require helping in the matter. We are shortsighted and would choose what was not best for us. We are not very different from children in this respect. We would prefer what is immediately pleasant. We would choose to be well and free from care and affliction, and to have plenty of all things. In a sense, it would be a healthy and rational choice. Only, as things are on earth for the moment, it would be premature.

God intends His children to have all that the heart can desire at last. He does not intend to keep them perpetually bound in affliction and iron. The wealth of the sinner, the honour of all men, and everlasting joy are waiting them at last.

Seasons 2.38

30 That the wicked is reserved to the day of destruction? they shall be brought forth to the day of wrath.

I might also state here that we also hold that light (or knowledge) brings responsibility, that the Deity has not tied His hands, as it were, in any case-is not limited. His will is supreme. He knows how to reserve the wicked to the Day of Judgment to be punished.

If He sees fit to raise an unbaptised rejector there is no reason why He should not, but we have no right to say, This man will be, or that man will not be raised and punished, or where the responsibility of such men begins. He knows, and will do right in all cases. I think the advice given by one of old time may safely be followed, whether inspired or not I know not, but it is quite in accord with the truth,

"Be not thou curious how the ungodly shall be punished, or when, but enquire how the righteous shall be saved, whose the world is, and from whom the world is created"

(2 Esdras 9:13).

The Christadelphian, Feb 1898