11 They shall speak of the glory of thy kingdom, and talk of thy power;
As one warms up to a right appreciation of the certainty and blessedness of Christ's coming and kingdom, a host of questions speed through the brain. Why are we not more joyful? Why are we not more ardent and importunate in our prayers for the kingdom to come? Why are we not more eager to spread its news to others?
Why are we less at home in unfolding the glorious, heart-rejoicing particulars concerning it, than in demonstrating the errors of Christendom? Why are we so shy and strained in our everyday allusions to it? Do these questions imply an untrue situation? No. Then what is the explanation?
It lies partly in our unfamiliarity with the subject, and partly in our feebleness of conviction in relation to the kingdom. We do not want cant-hypocritical talk. But we do want homely conversation about the kingdom, and more of it. The family circle is not silent when a sea-side holiday is in prospect, nor when it is spoken of is the conversation wooden or stilted.
Christadelphians are a family-for the moment at work, but with a grand holiday ahead. Let us then speak more of it, and learn to do so naturally-not pull long faces, and assume sanctimonious demeanour, as if the kingdom were a place of punishment instead of reward-of happiness and joy.
We are about to start a new year. Let us try to improve, and the way to do so is to become more and more acquainted with our subject, and to grow heart and soul in love with it. And to do this we have only to copy Christ.
He sought first the Kingdom of God, and spoke of it to those near and afar off accordingly. A passionate fondness for the kingdom will make us the best friends and helpers of the brethren, and will safeguard us against the many dangerous pitfalls which beset our path in this present evil world.
Bro AT Jannaway
The Christadelphian, Jan 1905
18 Yahweh is nigh unto all them that call upon him, to all that call upon him in truth.
No man will reach the kingdom without prayer, and prayer to be effectual must proceed from lips which are sincere and upright. God will not hear men who keep not His commandments (Prov. 15:29; Ps. 66:18).
The prayers of the disobedient are worse than useless-they are an abomination in God's ears (Prov. 28:9). Let us then examine ourselves, and pray simply, fervently, unceasingly. Let us pay no heed to the objections of men who tell us that prayer is beneath the notice of a Great Creator, that it is superfluous, and, if answered, would mean a violation of Nature's laws. Till the Bible is demolished we can afford to let such objections severely alone.
The Bible is full of encouragement in the matter of prayer. Hannah prayed for a child, and got one (1 Sam. 1:11, 20) Abraham's servant prayed for a good wife for Isaac, and met with a response (Gen. 24.). Hezekiah asked for longer life, and received it (Is. 38). Moses and David petitioned the destruction of their enemies, and were answered. Therefore there is power in prayer.
But someone may say, "I have often prayed, and obtained no reply." What of that? Has not God coupled with His promises an intimation that at times He will refrain from answering prayer? No prayer will be heeded which is opposed to His will (1 Jno. 5:14). Can we not trust God to pick and choose for us in the things that we would like?
Much that is beyond the power of finite man to see and grasp has to be taken into account before his prayer can be answered. We sometimes forget this when things do not go just as we would wish. Let us remember, too, that this is a day for walking by faith, and that all prayer is answered in harmony with this divine arrangement.
Bro AT Jannaway
The Christadelphian, Aug 1900