O suffering Jesus! the thief scoffed at Thee, and the malefactor spat on Thee, and the soldiers stabbed Thee; but these who sit before Thee to-day have no heart to do that. O Jesus! tell them of Thy love, tell them of Thy sympathy, tell them of the rewards Thou wilt give them in the better land. Groan again, O blessed Jesus! groan again, and perhaps when the rocks fall, their hard hearts may break.
“Nothing brought Him
Nothing but redeeming love.”
The promise is all free, the path all clear. Come, Mary, and sit to-night at the feet of Jesus. Come, Bartimeus, and have your eyes opened. Come, O prodigal! and sit at thy father’s table. Come, O you suffering, sinning, dying the soul! and find rest on the heart of Jesus. The Spirit and Bride say “Come,” and Churches militant and triumphant say “Come,” and all the voices of the past, mingling with all the voices of the future, in one great thunder of emphasis, bid you “Come now!” Are not those of you who are in the third class ready to pass over into the second division, and become seekers after Christ? Ay, are you not ready to pass over into the first division, and become the pardoned sons and daughters of the Lord Almighty? I can do no more than offer you, through Jesus Christ, peace on earth and everlasting residence in His presence.
“When God makes up His
Of natives in His holy mount,
’Twill be an honor to appear
As one new-born and nourished there.”
Good-night! The Lord bless you! Go to your homes seeking after Christ. Sleep not until you have made your peace with God. Good-night—a deep, hearty, loving, Christian good-night!
“And she went, and came, and gleaned in the field after the reapers: and her hap was to light on a part of the field belonging unto Boaz, who was of the kindred of Elimelech.”—Ruth ii: 3.
The time that Ruth and Naomi arrive at Bethlehem is harvest-time. It was the custom when a sheaf fell from a load in the harvest-field for the reapers to refuse to gather it up: that was to be left for the poor who might happen to come along that way. If there were handfuls of grain scattered across the field after the main harvest had been reaped, instead of raking it, as farmers do now, it was, by the custom of the land, left in its place, so that the poor, coming along that way, might glean it and get their bread. But, you say, “What is the use of all these harvest-fields to Ruth and Naomi? Naomi is too old and feeble to go out and toil in the sun; and can you expect that Ruth, the young and the beautiful, should tan her cheeks and blister her hands in the harvest-field?”
Boaz owns a large farm, and he goes out to see the reapers gather in the grain. Coming there, right behind the swarthy, sun-browned reapers, he beholds a beautiful woman gleaning—a woman more fit to bend to a harp or sit upon a throne than to stoop among the sheaves. Ah, that was an eventful day!