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The Present Obscurity and Future Glory of the Righteous

The Present Obscurity and Future Glory of the Righteous

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Matthew, xiii, 43. — Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father.



Matthew, xiii, 43. — Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father.

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Published by: GLENN DALE PEASE on Apr 18, 2014
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reserved


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THE PRESET OBSCURITY AD FUTURE GLORY OF THE RIGHTEOUS. BY REV. JOH SUMMERFIELD, A.M.A FUERAL DISCOURSE. Matthew, xiii, 43. — Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. The hand of death has touched us sore ; the cry of death has been heard in your chambers. We too feel the hand of death upon us ; the sentence is in ourselves : yet all feel a principle within that is proof against the stroke ; it only opens the door to liberate that immortal principle. True, many may shrink when the door opens — linger — nay, be forced to depart ; but, by the grace of God, the inhabitant within may long for its opening. See the importance of human life, the only basis of human usefulness ; for there is no work in the grave whither we are hastening. Oh ! redeem the time ; work while it is day. Our friend has been early removed, but he was found in the midst of his usefulness, doing the will of God. Reminded, then, are we, not of the brevity only, but the importance of life. Eternity takes its complexion from time — it is as we make it. Our departed friend is now reaping what he sowed. The text and context lead, by a parable, to the connexion of time and eternity. It is thus explained by Jesus himself : " He that soweth the good seed is the Son of man : the field is the world : the good seed are the children of the king- dom : but the tares are the children of the wicked one : the OBSCURITY AD GLORY OF THE RIGHTEOUS. 63
enemy that sowed them is the devil : the harvest is the end of the world ; and the reapers are the angels. As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire, so shall it be in the end of this world. The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity ; and shall cast them into a furnace of fire : there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth. Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father." In drawing some farther improvement from our subject let us consider, I. The present obscurity of the righteous. II. Their future manifestation. I. The present obscurity. Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the king- dom of their Father ; implying that they are now waiting for the manifestation of the sons of God. God knows that eternity is long enough to shine in ; at present, therefore, he allows us to remain in comparative obscurity. I need not dwell on the character, the " righteous ;" you are often informed of it. Do ye not know that the righ- teous, and they only, shall inherit the kingdom of God ? Yes, you do know, by our ministry, that, unless washed and sanctified, you cannot be saved. Oh ! that you felt as much as you know. The righteous ! There are many such here to-night. The causes of the present obscurity are many. 1. The character of the world in which they live. They are not at home here, but strangers and foreigners — born of heaven. The character is so glorious that the world has not the power to discern and estimate it. Hence Christians are disregarded; though they are the salt of the
earth, the leaven which preserves the world, yet the world knows it not, and despises them. " ow are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be ; but Ave know that when he shall appear we shall be like him." A Christian is an enigma to a man of the world. 64 OBSCURITY AD GLORY OF THE RIGHTEOUS. (Southey undertaking to write the life of Wesley.) Hence they burn them. They are under a cloud now : not always so ! — (Blind man and colours.) 2. The station they generally occupy in the world. If all were men of eminence, the world might be struck. If kings had dipped their sceptres in righteousness, and the nobles # # * But where are we to look ? " ot many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble are call- ed." See Jesus standing like himself with the healed around him and the dead rising, while he exclaims, " The poor have the Gospel preached to them." It is their peculiar heri- tage ; it is laid at the foot of the throne as well as the thresh- old of the cottage, but the poor form the largest portion of the church : so they remain under a cloud, known only to their poor neighbours. They shine, but in corners, not on eminences. Look into our congregations. The poor hear us gladly. The poor encircle the Lord's table ! the poor rejoice. " I will leave in the midst of thee an afflicted and poor people, and they shall trust in the name of the Lord." Poverty, then, incrusts the diamond, and the lapidary has not yet cleared it. Learning would not shine with the poor ; they follow him who drew his breath in a stable. 3. The infirmities to which they are subject ; for exam- ple, of the mind. They cannot make their experience charm- ing to a fine ear, yet they may have the anointing of the Holy Ghost. " Once I was blind, now I see :" more than the infidels can say. Obscurity will be the consequence. Also bodily infirmities. — Lazarus. — Many precious saints

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