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11 Lo, he goeth by me, and I see him not: he passeth on also, but I perceive him not.
The earth is beautiful. It bears the marks of wise and good contrivance in every fibre; yet the contriver is nowhere to be found. Job's experience is the experience of all:
'Behold, I go forward, but he is not there; and backward, but I cannot perceive him' 23:8
There is no explanation of the vexing problem but the one furnished by the Bible, and this, as a rule, is rejected by the wise of this world-poetisers and all other sorts.
Man alienated from the architect and builder of "this house with starry dome and gemlike floor," cannot find Him by searching, and cannot "feel at home" where He hides Himself in displeasure.
"From room to room" He will rove in vain, to find the trace of Him, unless he enter the little sanctuary of Judea, with its treasured records. Here he will find the "Host" has left a message, explaining that we are "captives" because of revolt, but that we may become "guests" by reconciliation through faith in His son, who laid down his life for us; and that being thus "justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ," who will be here in due course to resume possession and management of the star-domed house, in which the reconciled children will be wholly at ease and at home for ever in "the presence of His glory with exceeding joy."
The Christadelphian, March 1894. p114-115
12 Behold, he taketh away, who can hinder him? who will say unto him, What doest thou?
...And has the father embraced the Truth yet? Well, no; he is very friendly, but he cannot get over the prejudice against the divinity of the Bible which he has imbibed from various "learned" sources. The God of the Bible is too petty for him. He does not like the "narrow way" and the "few-there-be-that-find-it" doctrine. He wants a God who will be a God and a saviour to everybody.
This is a very kindly desire on his part. He might as well want a "nature" that will do no drowning and starving with draught and famine. There is no such God as he wants any more than there is such a nature as he would like. Yet you cannot persuade him to accept the God there is. It seems probable he will go to the grave gazing after a God that has no existence, rejecting "the only living and true God," because He is not what he, a creature, thinks He ought to be.
This is a kind of intellectual infatuation that it is very difficult for common sense to understand. It is the characteristic of wisdom by every standard to find FACTS AS THEY ARE, and accept them with the utmost docility. The man who dictates to facts is bound to be carried away by their irresistible force at last.
Bro Roberts - Second Voyage to Australia
27 If I say, I will forget my complaint, I will leave off my heaviness, and comfort myself:
If we could lift the lids, as it were, and look in upon what is going on in the brain, we should see that everyone has a gnawing distress of some kind that they cannot get rid of. On that said glad morning all these mental toothaches will cease; the evil that depresses will take flight like the night before sunrise. We shall find ourselves in the presence of a noble King, vesting in himself the proprietorship of the whole earth, come from the God of the whole earth, who can say "I live for ever;" who can say,
"My Father hath given me glory everlasting, and the glory which He hath given me I give you."
Think of being recognised by the gracious smile of such an one, not as a distant act of politeness, but as a close, personal, cordial friendship. That will be the beginning of many ecstasies, for Christ has many friends, and we shall know and rejoice in them all. They are hid away in darkness just now, but he will bring them up again-the salt of the earth, the pick of mankind, God's jewels. We are to be introduced to them. We are to be made one of them.
That will be "receiving the right hand of fellowship" worthy of having. We receive the right hand of fellowship among each other now, but God has to ratify it before it is of any value. If God receive us not, what does human recognition avail? But God will receive us then, if we please Him now, and will introduce us to delightful friends whom we shall never lose, and never tire of, or find any fault in. Rejoicing together with them, we shall be invited to bless a world in darkness.
The promise embraces all the perishing world. All families of the earth shall be blessed. The immortal friends of God are going to be sent out on that errand, and to have power and plenty in their hands for that purpose. At present we can do nothing, though our hearts may break at the universal misery. All we can do is to wait for God, doing the little we can meanwhile. Think of going forth as Christ's representatives, clothed with his authority, and supported by his power, to listen to all cases, and rectify all abuses, punish all crimes, and supply all needs.
Bro Roberts - Trouble now, power soon.
32 For he is not a man, as I am, that I should answer him, and we should come together in judgment.
We pray, and our prayers are known to ourselves, and they are known to God; but His thoughts or dispositions towards our prayers are not made known to us till the right time, and so we pray the prayer of faith in the darkness. It befits not His greatness or His holiness that He should speak familiarly in an age like this, when little less than perfect barbarism prevails in all the earth.
It would be refreshing, as no language can describe, to have His response to our advances. He will guide our affairs in answer to our requests; but this is a silent answer, and all the answer suitable to a state of things described by a David as "a dry and thirsty land", The day of "streams in the desert" is coming.
The tabernacle is a prophecy of it, but it is also a prophecy of the days of drought that now prevail, when men, as foretold, "run to and fro to seek the word of the Lord, and find it not" (Amos 8:12). A recognition of these things is of great value to us while the time of silence lasts. They save us from the destructive disappointment that awaits the anticipations universally fostered by a false theory of God's relation to man.
Law of Moses Ch 14