Thursday afternoon, 22nd, October, 1868, at Edinburgh by G. V. W.
(Bound with other addresses by J. N. Darby.)
I would read a few Scriptures in connection with the appeal to our consciences as to the truth of our being part of that Church — how it really affects us — how it lays hold of us. First, as a practical test, set yourselves individually in the Church at Pentecost, — according to the description the Holy Ghost gives us of what the practical effect was, when the Holy Ghost came down from heaven, in these people for whom the Lord had gone into heaven (Acts. 2:41) — the practical effect of this light from Him who had gone into heaven.
The blessing should never be on our souls without the question coming, of how far practically we are showing the light that is come in unto us. Then (1 Thess. 4) this is the other terminus of the Church's dwelling down here (the one is at Pentecost). A heavenly people, and the Lord will come and fetch them. If our Lord were now to appear, the blessedness would be our thought; this is our Lord, and we have waited for Him. I ask you to let these two points, the commencement and the close, rest upon you. Study them and see how practically your life and ways, everything about you, is in keeping with the light which came from heaven at Pentecost, — is in keeping with the coining of our Lord from heaven, — what things become us (1 Thess. 1:9-10). These Thessalonians were turning from dumb idols. You may say we did not bow down to wood and stone; ah, but there may be much allowance of the world, the flesh, and the devil in our hearts; and these are idols — as truly idols to our hearts as the wood and stone to the Thessalonians. Then they were waiting for His Son from heaven. You can't say a person is waiting for another if all is not ready for that other's coming. A servant is not waiting for his master if all the house is in disorder. This waiting for His Son from heaven, a foolish thing for the world, a wise thing for the Christian.
Oh, beloved, are we children of God. Has a Father's love greeted you, telling you He knows you; that the love that rested on His Son rests on you; that the path that Son trod is the one through which He is guiding you; that the prospects that are in store for that Son are your prospects. Whatever manner of people ought we to be 1 Do let the word come home. Measure yourself with these Thessalonians. Can you say, "I am waiting: — if you knew my heart, my circumstances, you would know all was packed up and ready, and I am waiting for Him. Rev. 22:16, is the position of the people when He appears. He had left a people down here to go through the night. We are in the night, waiting for the bright and morning star. As much as you have of the world, you are giving up the privileges He has given you. Your position is practically outside the world — the Church was at Pentecost-the Thessalonians were outside the world, and our position, as truly as theirs, is outside too. When you and I are in the glory, it won't be the glory, it will be the Lord Himself will be our joy. What would the New Jerusalem be to me down here, without Him? Let us take it as a practical question, how far we are living below the light He has given us, or how far our thoughts, ways of life, all about us, are in unison with Christ when He comes.
The Lord in humiliation is like one side of the medal, the Lord in glory is like the other ride of the medal.