Are these sources of evidence not sufficient wherewith to determine, to the conviction of the universe, each man’s character at the judgment of the great day? Should more be required, many other witnesses may be summoned, if necessary, before the white throne. Satan and wicked spirits are ready to accuse the sinner, and to prove how he yielded to temptation, became habit and repute in sin, and a willing and active instrument for destroying others. True, Satan is a liar; but is this testimony a lie? Can these accusations, if false, be disproved? Can Christ be appealed to either as to their falsehood, or for exculpatory evidences of genuine repentance or new life? And holy angels, too, are there, who will be able to testify as to whether this man ever gave them joy as a true penitent, was the object of their ministrations as an heir of salvation, or known to them as a fellow-worker in Christ’s kingdom upon earth. Relations, friends, neighbours, church-members, are also there to tell, at Christ’s bidding, what was the manner of his life in the family, in society, or in the “household of God.” What has this man as a father, husband, or child, done? What example did he set? What temper and conduct did he manifest at home? What was his influence as a companion? Did he lead to hell or heaven? What did Christians find him to be as a fellow-Christian? Was he cruel and covetous, slothful and indifferent, uncharitable and censorious; or loving, zealous, and self-denying, the author of peace and lover of concord, a friend and brother? Oh! surely, even now we can easily see how there can be no want of means at the great day of judgment, by which, without any revelation from the unerring and all-seeing Judge himself, each man’s character may be searched and known to its inmost depths, and in all its minute details be revealed.
And now, reader, before we proceed, let us here entreat of you to examine your present life. We ask, whether you think it possible that it can afford any evidence upon that day of sincere love to Jesus Christ?—anything which can warrant the Judge to say to you, “Well done, good and faithful servant?”—anything in your aims, wishes, purposes, pursuits, endeavours, which evidence the existence in the least degree of that kind of life which is the result of being born and sanctified by God’s Spirit, and cannot otherwise be accounted for?
How many shrink from that examination now, which must take place then! But is it not wiser to know your sins, and see your danger now, when the one can be pardoned, and the other averted, than, for the first time, to awake to a sense of both, when your sins can never more, as far as man can discover, be removed, and your danger, if real, must end in ruin? We have many foreshadowings of judgment revealed to us by Christ; and we have the unavailing pleadings of those who desire to be recognised as among His friends. “Lord, Lord!” cry some,