In the midst of all the cares, vexations and trials of life, how blessed the assurance that some of the saints are bearing our names before a throne of heavenly grace! We should never forget that this is our judgement day, and that we have almost reached its final hour. Let each one ask himself, How do I appear before God? It is comforting to know that we are not being judged by the actual success of our efforts, but by the efforts themselves and the motives which inspire them; the actual fulfilling of the law being accomplished by our Redeemer and Substitute, in whom we trust.
The searching eye of our Judge is now scanning us each, with a view to the final decision, soon to be pronounced—as worthy, or unworthy, of the glorious reward of the faithful. It is a close, just, scrutinizing gaze: who can stand before it? None need fear because their best efforts produce imperfect fruit; but they have abundant cause for fear who discover in themselves a relaxation of effort, or that motives of a worldly character begin to supplant the true. Not one of the saints who is still running for the prize of our high calling should expect to be exempt from the Refiner's testing now. As we each realize our own and each other's position, and the great possibilities that hinge on the present moment, how earnest and unceasing should be our prayers, both for ourselves and for our fellow-pilgrims. Let us watch thereunto with all perseverance, and supplication for all saints.
But not only for our own personal welfare should we pray, but also for the work of spreading the Gospel in the face of the current of opposition brought to bear against it. How strengthening to those laboring in public ways, and thereby facing the full force of the current against the truth, to know that here and there and yonder are saints upon their knees praying for their success—that they be not overcome by the foe in open conflict; that they be not surprised and overcome by sudden and overwhelming forces; that they be not deceived and taken in a snare at some unfortified point.
Do all the saints indeed realize the active conflict now waging with the powers of darkness, and the great issues at stake. If you do not, ask God to help you to realize it; to sleep or be idle at your post of duty is dangerous indeed. Our unseen foe is subtle and wily: therefore let us be sober and vigilant, ever watching unto prayer, but remembering that our prayers, as well as our faith would be vain if accompanied by indolence and inactivity.
Finally, brethren, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may have free course and be glorified; praying also that God would open yet a wider door of utterance, to make known the mystery of Christ. 2 Thes. 3:1; Col. 4:3.
And this we pray: That your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and in all judgement. That ye may approve things that are excellent; that ye may be sincere and without offence in this day of Christ; being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ unto the glory and praise of God. Phil. 1:9-11.