madmen, or anything else that Antediluvians, Sodomites, a lukewarm church, or sleeping virgins, are disposed to heap upon them. Once more would I cry, Escape for thy life;' look not behind you; remember Lot's wife.'"


N. Southard, editor of the Midnight Cry, September 26, 1844, says:

"Before God, whose swift, approaching judgment will bring every secret thing to light, I wish to say, that up to this hour my professed consecration to him has not been complete. If this fact makes me a hypocrite, I have been one. I have not been dead to the world. If all Christians are dead to the world, I have not been a Christian. But I now say, let Christ be all, and let me be nothing. He has a balm for every wound, for his blood cleanseth from all sin; and I, even I, can stand complete in him.


"After writing thus far, I kneeled and asked God for direction as to what I should say next. I arose and took my Bible, and opening it, read Rev. vii, 9–17: 'After this I beheld, and lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands; and cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God, which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb,' &c. If this great multitude is admitted before the throne, is there anything to keep me from being there? They differ in every conceivable particular from each other, except in two. They have all washed their robes in the blood of the Lamb, and have all suffered great tribulation for his sake. Here, then, is the touchstone. Is your robe all washed clean in the blood of Christ? or have you been insulting him, by trying to

[ocr errors]

patch up a robe out of the filthy rags of your own righteousness? Alas! I have thought that I could rest partly upon myself and partly on Christ. I now cast myself naked and helpless upon that mercy which saved the thief on the cross, which received denying Peter, which honored Mary Magdalene as the first witness of his resurrection, and which changed a persecuting Saul into a chief apostle.

“But can I bear the second mark? Can I joyfully endure tribulation for Jesus? Not in my own strength, but his grace is sufficient for me. In that grace I believe; Lord, help mine unbelief.

"One of my besetting sins has been a desire to please those around me, instead of inquiring, simply, what would the Lord have me to do, to be, and to say. I confess this before the world, but I cannot confess that I have not thought I was doing right in publishing the evidence of Christ's near coming. I have not been half enough awake to the greatness of the subject. May God forgive me in this thing, and grant me grace to be wide awake till he comes. Dear reader, are you awake? If not, it is high time to awake out of sleep."

Elder F. G. Brown, October 2, 1844, says:

"I wish to say to all my dear brethren and sisters, who with me have been waiting for the kingdom of Heaven, that I am thoroughly convinced that we are now in that portion of the parable of the ten virgins, represented by the cry at midnight, 'Behold the bridegroom cometh, go ye out to meet him.' I fully respond to the cry; my expiring lamp has been re-kindled, and I am now permitted, by God's grace, to see additional light blazing from the Scriptures, and all converging to one glorious point, the advent of our blessed Lord this very month! My dear friends, I have been in an

awful, slumbering, sleeping state. I have been on the verge of perdition; though I have never ceased to cherish in my heart the great and leading doctrines of the Lord's coming. I thought a few weeks ago that I was in a pretty good state; awful delusion! Look out for deception! Awake, and trim your lamps, or you will be lost after all!"

Elder J. Litch, late editor of the Advent Herald, Boston, October, 1844, says:

"I wish to say to my dear brethren and sisters, who are looking for the coming of the Lord on the tenth day. of the seventh month, but especially to those who have hesitated on the question, that the strong objections which have existed in my mind against it, are passed away, and I am now convinced that the types, together with the signs of the times, are sufficient authority for believing in the Lord's coming at that time; and henceforth I shall look to that day with the expectation of beholding the King in his beauty. I bless the name of the Lord for sending this midnight cry to arouse me to go out to meet the Bridegroom. May the Lord make us meet for the inheritance of the saints."

William Miller, Low Hampton, N. Y., October 11, 1844, says:

“I think I have never seen among our brethren such faith as is manifested in the seventh month. 'He will come,' is the common expression. He will not tarry the second time,' is their general reply. There is a forsaking of the world, an unconcern for the wants of life, a general searching of heart, confession of sin, and a deep feeling in prayer for Christ to come. A prepara

tion of heart to meet him seems to be the labor of their agonizing spirits. There is something in this present waking up different from anything I have ever before

seen. There is no great expression of joy; that is, as it were, suppressed for a future occasion, when all Heaven and earth will rejoice together with joy unspeakable and full of glory. There is no shouting; that, too, is reserved for the shout from Heaven. The singers are silent; they are waiting to join the angelic hosts, the choir from Heaven. No arguments are used or needed; all seem convinced that they have the truth. There is no clashing of sentiments; all are of one heart and of one mind. Our meetings are all occupied with prayer, and exhortation to love and obedience. The general expression is, 'Behold the bridegroom cometh, go ye out to meet him.' Amen. Even so come, Lord Jesus."

I will here give, as the closing testimony relative to the character of the seventh-month movement, one from the "Advent Shield," published January, 1845. And let it be borne in mind that the "Shield" was a standard work, of 440 pages, for all Adventists at that time, and that the following testimony from it was not published till about three months after the seventh-month movement, when Adventists had taken time to review the past, and settle, as was supposed, upon a firm, united position.

"It produced everywhere the most deep searching of heart and humiliation of soul before the God,of high Heaven. It caused a weaning of affections from the things of this world, a healing of the controversies and animosities, a confession of wrongs, a breaking down before God, and penitent, broken-hearted supplications to him for pardon and acceptance. It caused self-abasement and prostration of soul, such as we never before witnessed. As God, by Joel, commanded, when the great day of God should be at hand, it produced a rending of hearts and not of garments, and a turning unto

the Lord with fasting, and weeping, and mourning. As God said by Zechariah, a spirit of grace and supplication was poured out upon his children; they looked to him whom they had pierced, there was a great mourning in the land, every family apart and their wives apart, and those who were looking for the Lord afflicted their souls before him. Such was its effect upon the children of God.

"While none could deny the possibility of the Lord's then coming, and as the fulfillment of some of the types chronologically at Christ's first advent rendered it highly probable that those which typified the second advent, would also be chronologically fulfilled, so general an awakening, and with such blessed fruits, could not but impress many minds; and those who were not convinced of the soundness of the typical argument, were led to regard it as a fulfillment of the parable of the ten virgins, in the twenty-fifth of Matthew,-as their arising to trim their lamps, after having gone forth to meet the Bridegroom, and slumbering while he tarried; so that the definite time was finally embraced by nearly all of the Advent faith. So universal a movement among those who a short time before were comparatively asleep on this question, could not be unnoticed by the world.

"The wicked, consequently, flocked to the various places of meeting, some out of idle curiosity to hear, others out of concern for their spiritual interests, and others still to scoff at solemn things. Those who believed they should so shortly stand in their Saviour's presence, and whose works corresponded with their faith, could not but feel a nearness of access to God, and sweet communion with him; and the souls of such were greatly blessed. With a realizing sense of such a nearness of the greatest of all events, as we came up to that

« VorigeDoorgaan »