Therefore be you also ready: for in such an hour as you think not the Son of man comes.
I remark, then, in view of this subject thus far opened, that a proper Christian watchfulness and forethoughtfulness in regard to death and the future life will not abstract us from this world, but return us back to it better fitted to perform our part here than ever before. You are, after a long, weary summer's day, suffocated with heat, grimed with dust, covered with perspiration, and fretted of skin; and you are permitted to go down to the shore of the ocean, and bathe in its translucent waters; and your body is cleansed and cooled, and reinvigorated; and you return along the shadow of the evening, grateful, and stronger than you went. Now, God's ocean of eternity is so near, that the soul, moiled with trouble, may cast itself in, and bathe its troubles away, and return to its life again, bright, clear, inspired, strong. If you think of death as a slave, looking upon it as going into servitude under a hard master, then it may weaken you, and take away the comfort that you have; but if you think of it, as every child of God has a right to think of it, as going to your Father's house, where a rich banquet is prepared for you, and where you shall enjoy the companionship of saints and angels, it will be a source of comfort and strength to you. We can afford to take trouble here for the sake of gaining such an inheritance. What would I care for being poor, if I knew that at the end of one year I should have ten millions of dollars? Men would toil hard, and unremittingly, and without complaint, if they could be assured that the boundary of their toil was within their computation, and that all beyond was to be enjoyment and the amplest wealth. Men do endure everything in the hope of securing wealth and enjoyment. How will they pursue laborious industry in the chilling regions of the North, or how will they plunge into the heat of the tropics, encountering sickness, and the malaria of every delta that has commerce in it, in the hope that they may return to their father's house, or the village or neighbourhood of their birth, and spend the few closing days of their life in pleasure and comfort. And if such is the strength of the hope of a short period of earthly peace and rest, how much greater must be the strength of that man's hope who expects, after a few years (he cares not how few, so that God's will is done) he shall rise out of this world of trouble, and care, and vicissitudes, into the land of glory; God's land of freedom, of nobility, of purity, of truth?
(H. W. Beecher.)
Parallel VersesKJV: Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.