We read in the 16th chapter of Matthew that our Lord rebuked the Pharisees and Sadducees because they could not discern the signs of the times.  They should have understood those signs because they were the custodians and expounders of the oracles of God; but they erred, not knowing the Scriptures.  Moreover, the signs were sufficiently clear and numerous.  They were clear enough for John the Baptist.  When he from his prison sent messengers to the Lord to ask if He were the One that should come, His answer was “Go and show John again the things that ye do hear and see  He knew that the answer would be understood. But to those who sat in Moses’ seat, and in whom the authority to teach was formally lodged, the signs of His coming were absolutely without significance.  They could discern the sign of the sky and give some information about the weather; information of a relatively trifling and transient value; but they could not discern the “signs of the times Hence our Lord termed them “hypocrites  They assumed the role of teachers, but did not teach that which it most concerned the people to know.



How is it in our day?  Events are happening that are full of significance.  There are signs enough; but those who sit in Moses’ seat, and are formally invested with authority are, with few exceptions, telling us merely about the weather, and generally the prediction is, “it will be fair weather” (Matt. 16: 2.)  In Scripture all signs have reference to “Him that should come”; but to the majority of those who comment on current events “all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation.” (2 Pet. 3: 4.)



Our purpose in this hour is to take notice of some of the things that have happened in the past, and that are transpiring in our day, and to examine them in the light of God’s Word.  May the Spirit of Truth be our guide.



There are two Scriptures which I wish to have particularly in mind:



Matt. 13: 30: “ Let both grow together until the harvest and Rev. 14: 15: “The harvest of the earth is ripe



The age in which we are living is bounded by these two sentences of Scripture.  The first marks the beginning of the age and the character it should possess throughout its entire length.  There was a sowing of two general kinds of seed - only two, (though, of the second kind, the tares, there might be many varieties): and there was to be a continuous development of both sorts throughout the age until the harvest.



The second text marks the ending of the age, for “the harvest is the end of the age.” (Matt. 13: 39.)  What happens after the harvest belongs to another age; the harvest is the end of this [evil] age.**


* Strictly speaking “the end of the age” referred to in this parable is doubtless the end of that portion of the Jewish age which will be resumed after the present parenthetical dispensation (the Church age) is brought to its end by the removal of the Church as described in 1 Thess. 4: 16- 19.  The writer not aiming here at strictness of interpretation.  The importance, however, of noting the real end of this present dispensation lies in the fact that, while the nearness or the harvest may be clearly realised from the facts set forth in this address, the removal of the Church from this earthly scene is nearer still.


[*NOTE. There is also a removal of some of His redeemed people - (certainly not all, but certainly those “regarded worthy to escape”), - will occur before God deals again with the Jewish nation; and before the commencement of Antichrist’s persecutions during the Great Tribulation.  See Luke 21: 34-36 and Rev. 3: 10.]







Our Lord thus clearly and pointedly announced, at the very beginning of the age, and calling on all who have ears to pay heed to the announcement (ver. 43) that the age was to have a very striking characteristic.  It has indeed, many characteristics distinguishing it from ages past and ages to come; but we confine our attention to that special one presented in the passage cited; namely that throughout the age, God would not interfere with the doings of men acting with self-will, and under the guidance of Satan, who was the chosen “god of this age.” (2 Cor. 4: 4.)  This was a consequence of the rejection of Christ, the rightful Sovereign.  Satan was thereupon confirmed in his title of “prince of this worldwhich our Lord recognised explicitly three distinct times, as recorded in John’s gospel, and impliedly in the temptations in the wilderness. (Luke 4: 6.)  But in addition to the office of prince of this world, Satan also became the “god of this age”; i. e., the director of its spiritual affairs.  Hence the utter irreconcilability, between those who are “in Christ” and those who are “in the world  Henceforth then, until the very end of the age the course of human affairs, directed by “the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience”,* (Eph. 2: 2) was to proceed unchecked and unhindered by the hand of God.


[* NOTE. That is, in both the unregenerate, and also in the disobedient regenerate.  “Now the Spirit of the Lord had departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the Lord troubled him:” (1 Sam. 16: 14. See LXX.). cf. 1 Sam. 28: 15: “And Samuel said to Saul, Why hast thou disquieted me, to being me up?  And Saul answered, I am sore distressed; for the Philistines make war against me, and GOD IS DEPARTED FROM ME, and answereth me no more, neither by prophets, nor by dreams: therefore I have called thee, that thou mayest make known unto me what I shall do.  And Samuel said, Wherefore then dost thou ask of me, seeing THE LORD IS DEPARTED FROM THEE, and is become thine adversary  “And we are witnesses of these things,” said the Apostle Peter, “and so is the Holy Ghost {Spirit}, whom God hath GIVEN TO THEM THAT OBEY HIM:” (Acts 5: 32, R.V.).]



Attention to these plain teachings of our Lord would save the Christian from much perplexity.  Many things happen which seem to be, and are, utterly inconsistent with the idea that God is directing human affairs in this age.  But where did that notion come from?  Not from the Word of God, which teaches the direct opposite.  It could only, come from the “spirit of the world” (1 Cor. 2: 12), whose constant aim is to cast reproach upon God.  No, when you are asked by the sceptic, “how could such a thing happen in God’s world?” you can say, “it could not; but in Satan’s world it is quite in keeping



In previous ages God did deal directly with the affairs of representative men, with those of a family, and then with those of a nation.  But now, from the age which has rejected His Son, He withdraws Himself.  It is the day of God’s silence.*+ It is the day in which man can have his own way; in which he can achieve and can freely boast himself of his achievements; in which he can speak even against the Most High, unchecked and unrebuked.  It is emphatically “man’s day(1 Cor. 4: 3; marg.)


+ See that valuable and illuminating volume - “The Silence of God,” by Sir Robert Anderson.


In this age then the evil one was permitted freely to sow his seed throughout the field, and “the field is the world.” (Matt. 13: 39).  Not only so, but the plants germinating from these seeds are permitted, to spring up and grow, and to spread their branches, and to bear and mature their fruit.



The divine pre-announced programme for the age afforded free and ample opportunity to mankind to bring forth the very best possible results that could be achieved with the aid of man’s chosen leader, and along the alluring paths of self-improvement, self-reliance, self-sufficiency, self-development, in which their chosen guide essayed to lead them.  For Satan’s aim is, not to drag men down, but to lift them up.  Every gospel of self-development and self-improvement is satanic in its origin and result.  (See “The World and Its God” by the writer.)



God declared that He would not interfere with the growth of the tares.  The effects of Satan’s leadership were to be fully disclosed.  His plan was to be accorded a perfectly fair test, with every favourable condition the tares were to have the benefit of the same soil air, moisture and sunshine as the wheat.  The servants of the householder, seeing the presence of tares in the field, would have gathered them up, but He said: “Let both grow together until the harvest No obstacle is to be put in the way of the growth and development of any seed of the devil’s planting.



We may be very sure that Satan is deeply interested in the success of his plan for humanity.  We know not all that he may have at stake, but we know that he has enough at stake to incite him to the exercise of his highest intelligence, and to the putting forth of his greatest energies in behalf of the “progress of the race  It is certainly with him a matter of pride, and pride was the cause of his downfall.  Hence the intense activity of the age - the tremendous, the superhuman energies put forth, and the marvellous intelligence displayed in every line of material development; as well as in the spiritual realm.  Nature is pillaged of all her resources, creation is ransacked, and is forced, by the persistence of men, to yield up her secret stores, and to lend her hidden and mysterious forces to the service of mankind.  Generations of men fall in the struggle, and pass away without seeing the elusive goal for which so much life and blood are spent; but nevertheless a single definite purpose holds steadily throughout the age.  All the results of human discoveries, inventions and “triumphs over nature,” as they are proudly called, are directed toward the single object of making earth a pleasant and comfortable abiding place for humanity apart from God - a place in which He shall not be missed - toward an object which shall justify the rejection of Christ.  And so in all these “discoveries and triumphs” no glory is given to Him who stored creation with the products of His marvellous wisdom.  Men take all the credit to themselves and they ever bestow their own names upon God’s laws.  It is Newton’s law, Kepler’s law, Ohin’s law that we hear about.  No one now hails a new discovery with the inspired exclamation, “What hath God wrought  The cry now is, “What has man wrought  Truly it is “man’s day






It is, however, to be observed, as a very significant fact, that men do not quite comprehend, or even fully learn the right uses of, the substances and forces of nature which they discover, and which they label with their own names.  Mishaps, blunders and even disasters attend each innovation.  Explosions, collisions, conflagrations and the like are every-day occurrences.  This fact alone would indicate to the truly-wise that the present uses of these natural materials and forces have not been learned from Him who created them.  The presence of a superior directing intelligence in human affairs, an intelligence that is superhuman, is sufficiently, manifest; but on the other hand it is evident that the directing intelligence is not the Wisdom of God.  Doubtless one of the delights of those who are chosen unto the resurrection of the just will be to learn, in the [millennial] age to come, the true uses of all those things which now are but partly understood.



And so the great experiment of the age proceeds to its very end.  Full scope and time have been given to it. Man has, in this [evil] age ample opportunity to cultivate the earth according to his own ideas, prompted and aided by the wisdom of the god of the age; and not until all the fruits are fully matured and their nature clearly manifested, shall the reapers be sent forth to gather them up.  They will then, and not sooner, become an object lesson in the moral government of God, to all created intelligences, celestial and terrestrial.



*       *       *






Let it not be supposed that the tares which are to grow together with the wheat until the harvest, are rank and noxious weeds, such as the vices, crimes and cruelties of humanity.  Quite the contrary.  These tares are the products of man’s genius and industry, not of his viciousness and depravity.  The resources of nature which men have developed are the creation of God’s own hand, and the forces of nature, which men have mastered and applied to their own purposes, are God’s own energies.  The products, therefore, could not fail to have in themselves properties of beauty and utility, which naturally evoke admiration.  But looking at the method and purpose of their production, the results of human ingenuity are all alike evil.  Our Lord’s unqualified testimony of the world is “that the works thereof are evil” (John 7: 7).  He found nothing to commend in all the works of the world.  No, the tares were not a rank poisonous growth; but on the contrary, they bore a very close resemblance to the wheat; so much so that even the angelic servants of the householder could not be trusted to distinguish between them.  Nay, lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them.”)  Until ripe the difference could not be detected.



And not only so, but the same soil and air which supply nourishment, and the same sunshine and rain which ripen the wheat, perform the same ministry to the tares: “For He maketh His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust” (Matt. 5: 45).



The main and vital difference between the tares and wheat is this, that the former lack what the latter yields, namely, the kernel or grain, which is fit to be gathered into barns, and which can be converted into bread that sustains the life and satisfies the soul.



The appearance of the tares or darnel is fair to the eye.  It is green and flourishing.  Its appearance promises a satisfactory yield, and the field presents a pleasing prospect as the blades of imitation wheat wave gracefully in the summer breeze.  But despite the fair and promising appearance, the product is a mockery to those who have expended their toil, and tears and lives, upon it, and is fit only to be gathered into bundles to be burned. Human genius and human industry, with all the great engines and contrivances that have been devised, and with the aid of all the natural stores and forces to which God has given free access, have not produced one single thing which can satisfy, the heart of man.  But this lack of kernel or grain is not manifest until the plant has reached maturity.  Therefore the word is: “Let both grow together until the harvest






Man’s day has been a long day.  It has far exceeded in length any previous day.  God cannot be charged with unfairness in not allowing sufficient time for the crops to ripen.  No one will be able to say that, with more time, the Satanic plan for the human race could have been worked out to a satisfactory conclusion.  The experiment, therefore, is allowed to proceed to its very end.  But there is to be a time of harvest, a time of a general reaping and gathering of all the products of the age, and that time of harvest is to be “the end of the age” (Matt. 13: 39).






The procedure at the time of the harvest is to be peculiar.  The wheat is to be gathered into the Householder’s barn.  He who sowed in tears shall then reap in joy.  The Divine Sower who went forth with weeping, bearing precious seed, shall come again with rejoicing, bearing His sheaves with Him. (Ps. 126: 5, 6).



But the tares - every growing thing, no matter how excellent in appearance, which has sprung from seed not sown by the Son of Man, - is to be gathered into bundles on the field (and “the field is the world”) to burn them.  None of the products of this age, upon which the age so greatly prides itself, is to survive into the age to Come.



When the time of harvest arrives the Son of Man will send forth His angels.  These angelic beings come, not to hold up their admiring wonder at the great things which man has made, the twenty-story buildings and the hundred-horse, power automobiles, and all the other products of “civilization  Those holy hands will be engaged in an occupation of a very different sort; namely, in gathering all these great achievements into bundles, as worthless rubbish, which must be consumed before the righteous shall return with their Lord to shine forth in the kingdom of their Father.






When then is the time of the harvest? The Husbandman Himself is the One who determines when the time has come for reaping the harvest.  Looking upon the field He will perceive that the products of man’s unhindered cultivation of the fruitful soil of earth are fully matured, and the word will go forth:



“Thrust in thy sickle and reap; for the time is come for thee to reap; for the harvest of the earth is ripe.” (Rev. 14: 15).



To us, the precise time of the harvest has not been revealed.  Of that day and hour knoweth no man.  Even He who sits on the clouds awaits the words, - “Thrust in thy sickle and reap



Nevertheless “ye, brethren, are not in darkness that day should overtake you as a thief” (1 Thess. 5: 4); and so, as we survey the field, in the light afforded by God’s Word, we can observe the progress and the condition of the various crops which men have been, throughout this long [evil] age, so sedulously cultivating. We cannot fail also to note that the influences which tend to ripen those crops have been working in our generation with intensified power; just as, at the end of the summer, a few days of warm sunshine bring every growing thing quickly to a state of maturity.



The results of such a survey of the field must be startling and impressive, indeed, to one who has eyes to see; for there are abundant evidences that the time of “the harvest of the earth” is at hand.  Those fruits of the earth which have not already fully ripened are maturing so rapidly that surely we may say, in the words of Jeremiah 51: 33:-



“Yet a little while, and the time of her harvest shall come



Let us now take for our consideration a few instances from which a general idea of the condition of the crops, and of the proximity of the harvest, can be obtained.  In presenting these examples I have not pursued any logical order, but have simply noted them as they occurred to me.



Philosophy. - The products of “the wisdom of the world” are fully ripe.  In fact, they are overripe.  No philosophy worthy of the name has ripened since the days of Plato and Aristotle.  Efforts of recent times to furnish an explanation of things - (for philosophy is the attempt to explain how things came to be what they are), - only serve to show clearly that the fruit of man’s wisdom is fully ripe.  There has been no progress here in many centuries.  What has come up in this part of the field has been a sort of second growth - very scrubby, [unscriptural] and of poor quality.  This portion of “the harvest of the earth is ripe



Literature. - Here we need exercise but little discernment to perceive that the crop of literary fruit is fully ripe. There has been practically no literary product in this generation. In the works of Shakespeare, Milton, Dante, Schiller, Goethe and a few others we have the fully matured product of the field of literature.  The present day product in this field is what a recent editorial in a New York secular paper characterized as “weeds of literature* Ordinary observers, who pay no attention whatever to prophecy, are noting the facts though no one who rejects Scripture can have any idea of their significance.


* Within a day or two appeared another editorial on the young toughs, the “unspeakable young devils” who disport themselves in New York City on Sunday and who were termed the weeds of “civilization  “Civilization” is ripe.



In fact the subjects of literature are exhausted.  There remain no great themes to be worked up, even if we have among us (as possibly we may have) men endowed with the literary capacity needed to work them up into approved literary forms.  Human effort in this line is now running into the daily paper and the ephemeral periodical.  “Literature” is neither produced nor consumed.  There is no public appetite for it.



In the literary field “the harvest of the earth is ripe



Painting, Sculpture, Architecture. - The story here is the same.  The fruits of these fields of human labour have long since ripened.  Among the recent product to be found in these fields there is nothing but imitation and repetition.  Further effort along these lines, except of the most perfunctory sort would be futile, for the supreme products of human genius in these fields have been brought forth.  All the forms have been worked over into all possible shapes.  The result of our survey here must be the conviction that, in these well cultivated fields also, the harvest is ripe.



Music.- Here is a rich and fertile field whose fruits and flowers have refreshed and cheered humanity through the ages, and upon whose cultivation the greatest care has been bestowed.  In this field it needs no long scrutiny to discern the true state of things.  Musical forms and compositions in their richness and variety have been already developed, and the highest specimens of every form have been already produced.  Every conceivable theme which could inspire the musical creative genius has been treated.  Indeed, the very conditions which are favourable to the conception and embodiment of truly great musical ideas are passing away.  This generation has neither time nor taste for these things; and, as we sample the present-day output from the music publishing houses, our conclusion therefrom must be that, in the great field of music, “the harvest of the earth is ripe







In the hasty glance which we have taken at some of the various fields which humanity has cultivated, our eyes have been greeted everywhere with unmistakably ripened fruit.  Let us look now in quite a different direction, namely, to the vast domain wherein national and social experiments are worked out, and the fruits of organizations are produced.  Heretofore, we have been looking at individual achievement and production.  We now look at associations of men - voluntary and involuntary - and at the result of co-operative effort, wherein the individual is nothing, and the society is everything.



Previous to what we may call “modern times” the fruits of co-operative effort had been brought forth under many different conditions, and a vast amount of “history” and “experience” had been accumulated.  In all this the incapacity of man to govern himself and others had been strikingly manifested.  But the Almighty had, in His wisdom reserved for a special purpose the fairest and most highly favoured part of the earth.  He kept it carefully hidden from those who had in hand the “progress of humanity  The exceptional natural conditions presented by the continent of America indicate a special Divine purpose - a special experiment to be worked out there.  The result has been to furnish to man an opportunity for trying his last social experiment under the most favourable conditions, and with the benefit of all the lessons that were to be learned from the experience of previous ages.  Surely, here and now, if ever and anywhere, humanity will bring forth fruits of righteousness, blessing and contentment.  Clearly this is the last experiment, for there is no room to try another.  Let us then rise to the tremendous significance of the fact that what we see coming into prominence around us is the ripening fruit of consummate human intelligence and human energy, developed to their highest point, and applied under conditions the most favourable that are possible under the sun.  The result is superabundant prosperity to be sure; but has the great social experiment of the American continent brought forth any fruits that make for general blessing and happiness to the mass of mankind?  We cannot here go into details.  Lack of time forbids it.  But there is no need to do so.  The sickening details of revealed corruption in the very centres and agencies of our national life and national “prosperity” are fresh in the minds of all.  What we seek to understand is the significance of these things.  What do they tell us?



Man is reluctant to confess failure.  He will even close his eyes to it when it is clear and unmistakeable.  We may recognize here the power of the great “Deceiver” of mankind.  For we must not forget that all the things we have been considering are but phases of Satan’s great experiment, the development of his plan for the human family, of which plan the first step was the eating of the tree of knowledge of good and evi1.



True, there is at the present moment a great stirring of the police and health departments of the nations, and a great scurry is manifested around the spots where the rapidly spreading corruption has come to the surface.  The false optimism of the times points to these nervous and spasmodic flutterings of the body politic as indications of a tendency towards better conditions.  But to one who has eyes to see, what they really indicate is the matured fruit of unhindered material prosperity, fruit which has been cultivated under the most favourable conditions, by the most gifted, versatile and energetic people who have ever occupied a portion of the earth.



The leaders and beneficiaries of the activities of this age and country will continue to cry “peace and safety but the anointed eye can clearly see that in this vast field the fruits of man’s long toiling and sweating are now fast ripening, if indeed their full maturity has not been already reached.



*       *       *








The progress of the Harvest of human government may also he clearly traced from the time when God lodged governmental authority in the hands of Nebuchadnezzer.  The image which that monarch saw, who was himself the golden head of human sovereignty, gives us the absolute limitations of the cultivation of this field. Man had rejected the only government which God ever instituted on earth; and so, in Nebuchadnezzar’s day, authority was committed to the Gentiles to be exercised by them “until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled



Nebuchadnezzar’s vision forecasts the progressive weakening governmental control, until the last period of all should see the iron of the Roman system mixed with the fragile pottery of democratic or popular rule.



That the world has advanced very far into this final stage of gentile government is undeniable. A striking illustration is afforded by the work of the last American Congress, which work the people have been called upon by the President and by the newspapers to admire.  The attention of the national legislature, assembled to provide measures for the welfare of this great people, has been occupied almost exclusively in the attempt to check two tendencies of our twentieth century civilization and progress; first unequal freight rates on the railroads; and second, the selling of decayed animal matter under government labels as “inspected” food; and we have no assurance that either attempt will succeed.  We have been taught from our infancy to regard the railroads as prominent among the blessings of modern civilization.  At what stage then have we arrived, when the power of our national government must he invoked to devise legislation which shall protect as from our blessings?



It would be supposed that the meaning of such facts as these would be unmistakable.  Under what spell then are the minds of men held that they can even regard the desperate governmental expedients of these times as indications of progress towards better things?  Is it not plain that “the law is not made for a righteous man, but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and for sinners,” etc. (1 Tim. 1: 9)?  The laws never come into existence until after the evils at which they are aimed have become intolerable; therefore, the more demand there is for repressive legislation the greater is the pressure of the rising tides of evil.



As to human government there can be no doubt that we have reached the latter end of the last stage before the King comes.






The resources of nature have now been widely and deeply explored.  Many and remarkable adaptations of means to ends have been contrived, and discovery seems to be as active as ever.  In surveying this field the superficial idea is that an indefinite period of discovery and invention yet lies before humanity; and indeed it requires a closer scrutiny and a deeper acquaintance with the facts in this field of human endeavour than are required to arrive at a correct conclusion as to the state of maturity of the crops in other fields.



Doubtless many new chemical combinations will yet be formed, and new permutations of mechanical elements will be devised; but I believe there are clear evidences that the main fruits of material development are practically ripe.  Everyone who, like the writer, has to do with inventions, is well aware that the industrial arts are all in a highly developed condition.  It is also clear, that in every direction which industrial development has taken, there are indications that the limit has been reached or is near.  Inventive effort is now expending itself upon the mere details.



We cannot go into the proof of this at length, and it must suffice to cite as an illustration the present state of development of those means whereby the energies of nature are utilized.  The development and transmission of power or energy lies at the foundation of all industrial operations, and this example will well serve to indicate the condition of the crops in this entire field.



Man-power and animal-power were first utilized and depended upon.  Then, as these were found to be inadequate, they were supplemented by devices for utilizing wind-power and water-power.  After this stage came the era of employment of the power of heat, which was latent in the immense forests and in the more immense beds of coal.  Now we are in the final stage of this last era, and are seeing the application of the energy of the high vibrations in general (etheric vibrations or radiant energy) and of electrical energy in particular.  Not only have we entered upon this final stage, but it must be admitted that the means for utilizing these forms of power or energy have themselves been highly developed; and what is now going on is mere improvement in details.



We have called this the final stage of material and industrial development.  Every one can see for himself that the “forces of nature” have all been mastered and pressed into the service of man.



“What shall we say then to these things  Can we say otherwise than that the crops in every field which man has cultivated are in such a state of advancement that at any moment the Lord of the Harvest may declare that “the harvest of the earth is ripe



Other crops might be sampled.  Particularly we might examine the conditions in the fields in which the religions of mankind have been cultivated.  Much is to be observed here; and the result of allother observations woulf be that the final stage of “strong delusionsRepugnance to “sound doctrine” and choice of “teachers having itching ears” has been reached.  The fruits and flowers of the religious field, of which Cain was the first cultivator, and which has produced all the popular systems which offer the delusive hope of salvation without the atoning blood of Christ, are ripe.







The Divine programme for the [evil] age was that the wheat and tares were both to grow together until the harvest; and the immediate preliminary to, or more properly, the first stage of, the harvest is to be the gathering together first of the tares into bundles (Matt. 13: 30).  Then, the wheat is to be gathered into the Lord’s barn, leaving the tares on the field, bunched together in bundles in condition to be consumed by the fires of judgment during the tribulation.



As we survey current events is it not clear that the process of gathering into bundles is proceeding in a variety of ways with amazing rapidity?  The individual now counts for nothing.  The organization is the thing.  And this is so wherever we look.



In the world of business (which is the foremost concern of the age) the tendency to gather into bundles is strikingly exemplified.  In every field of human industry the corporation has replaced the individual, with disasterous consequences to business honesty and fair dealing.  Nearly all the individual workers have been already gathered into bundles.  Those who are not so fortunate as to have a place in the corporations, but are compelled to work for them, are themselves gathering more and more into labour unions, each according to his particular craft, and this condition prevails everywhere.



Other bundles may be seen, of many different sorts.  There are societies, fraternities, clubs, guilds, unions, associations, etc., etc.



“As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire, so shall it be in the end of this age.  The Son of man shall send forth His angels, and they shall gather out of His Kingdom, all things that offend and them that do iniquity, and shall cast them into a furnace of fire; there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.  Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father.  Who hath ears to hear, let him hear” (Matt. 13: 40-43).



“And I looked, and behold a white cloud, and upon the cloud One sat like unto the Son of Man, having on his head a golden crown and in his hand a sharp sickle.  And another angel came out of the temple crying with a loud voice to him that sat on the cloud.  Thrust in thy sickle and reap; for the time is come for thee to reap; for the harvest of the earth is ripe” (Rev. 14: 14, 15).






The subject assigned to me calls for a word as to our testimony regarding the characteristics of the age; but since the allotted time has been consumed in discussing the first part of the subject, the latter part must be dismissed with the briefest comment.



In the face of all these things, and with the repeated warnings of Scripture in our ears, what can our testimony be other than it is now time to “look up, and lift up your heads for your redemption draweth nigh”?  We have a four-fold testimony to present to the world.   The answer to the sin that is in man is “Christ our Saviour,” the answer to  the feebleness, defeats and wilderness-wanderings of believers is “Christ our Sanctifier,” and the answer to sickness and disease in the mortal body is “Christ our Healer  Surely then, the answer to the conditions prevailing upon the earth at the present day is “Christ our coming Lord and King



Let us then give our testimony in the language of James 5: 7, 8.



“Be patient, therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord.  Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth



May we not remember in this connection what our Lord said in another place: “My Father is the Husbandman”?  He too is waiting, with an intensity of expectancy far exceeding anything that can kindle our hearts.  And His waiting is for “the precious fruit  For there was another kind of sowing.  We do not forget Him who went forth “bearing precious seed” (Psalm 126: 6), from which comes the fruit that is precious to the Husbandman, and is to be gathered into His barn.  Our thought has been directed solely to the other kind of crops; but it is appropriate just here to remind ourselves that our Lord too has had long patience for the promise.  “He shall see His seedand shall “see the travail of His soul and shall be satisfied” (Isa. 53: 11, 12.)  This is the “patience of Jesusthe “patience of hope



“Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until He receive the early and latter rain.  Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts; for THE COMING OF THE LORD DRAWETH NIGH” (James 5: 7, 8).