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    For the South,

    Kevin Stone, Commander
    NC Division, Sons of Confederate Veterans

Thursday 21 Feb 2019

Now! PDF Print E-mail
Written by Eric Rudd   
Monday, 21 January 2013 00:00


No. 68.

NOW.­­­­­­­­­­­­­­
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To-day, if ye will hear his voice, harden not your heart –

Ps. XCV. 7.

“I have long known that unbelief was my misfortune—but O, sir, until to-day, I knew not that it was my GUILT.”

My dear fellow-mortal, whoever you are, I now, in tho name and presence of God, and in Christ’s stead, lay before you my message; even this record, “God giveth you eternal life and this life is in His Son.,’ The free, the full, the sincere gift of eternal life through Christ Jesus, is at this moment held out to you whose eyes now rest upon these words.  Trifle not with it--put it not from you, I entreat of you--you have to answer for this very offer--your accepting of it will from henceforth make you eternally happy--your refusal may be the signal for the door of mercy to close for ever!  Hear me, O hear me then, just as if you saw the gate of heaven moving in its portal, about to be eternally closed.—“Be reconciled to God!”  Behold in the sorrows and death of His Son a perfect atonement for sin, and a pledge that He is reconciled to your salvation.  O why then will you not come to him?  Did you but know how sweet it is for a mourning, heavy-laden soul to rest itself on the finished work of Christ—and in assurance of hope to look forward to a peaceful, perhaps a triumphant death—to a glorious resurrection—to an eternity as full of bliss as an infinite God can make it to be—to look thus forward, and, in the exercise of faith, to say, “All, all is mine? For Christ is mine, and I am his!” if you could know the sweetness of this, even in a faint degree, readily would you say, “I will go with him!”

 

But, sinner if we part as we met—if you lay down this little messenger as you took it up, unbelieving, and having no desire to believer—then must I tell you what remains for you; “He that believeth not shall be damned.  Nay, it is not only

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a “shall be” but at this very moment you are in a condemned already, because he hath not believed in the only begotten Son of God.”  This one act of unbelief is enough to sink you into everlasting misery.  And wherefore?  Because it is downright blasphemy.  “He that believeth not God, hath made him a liar—because he believeth not the record that God gave his Son.”  Is not that blasphemy? And yet you who receive not with the heart the message of salvation, are guilty of it.

Immediate repentance, immediate faith, immediate conversion to God through Jesus Christ crucified, are your immediate duty; and not to perform this duty is your immediate guilt.  It is of no use to say, that you “cannot do these things without the grace of God.”  Grace does not create duty; for duty exists before grace, and is independent of it.  You are bound to repent and be converted, because God requires it, although there had been no Saviour and no salvation.  He that pleads the want of grace as an excuse for not submitting, shows that he is one of those that “will not” turn, and the death of such he must die, without remedy.

Are you not a sinner now?  This you will not deny.  Are you not under sentence of condemnation now?  Is not the anger of God as present as sin is?  Are you not then already in danger of the judgment? and is there a moment in which you may not perish eternally?  Are not your blessings cursed now?  Do you not feel now, in the blindness of your eyes, the hardness of your heart, the forerunners of eternal death?  Why then delay?

Is not the Lord Jesus Christ a Saviour now?  Is not his sacrifice finished, and his intercession begun?  Does he not live now?  Can he not save now?  Will he not receive you now?  Is he not actually saving multitudes of sinners on this earth now?  Whilst you are delaying, are not others coming to Him, even now?  and  will not many more come to Him, to-day, to-morrow; and every day hereafter, until the last sinner come, and every now is occupied? and why then do you delay to come to Christ?

Is not the gospel, which is the message of Christ’s love to you, true now?  Can it ever be more so?  Is it not perfect and fixed?  What it ever was to others, is it not that now to you?  What it shall be to the end of the world, is it not that to you at this instant?  Can it ever be more gracious or free than now?  Can it ever come nearer to you than at this present tim?  Can it ever be of greater authority than now?  Can there ever be more of God in it, more of Christ in it, more of the Spirit in it, than now?  Can it ever have a more

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individual application, a more personal offer to you than now?  No—never—were you to live a thousand years:--the gospel never changes; then why delay to receive it?

Is not faith the same now, that ever it can be?  Is it not the same truth that must be believed?  Must not the same soul also now as hereafter perform that act of faith?  Must not the same understanding discern the same heart receive, the same conscience submit, the same very person be converted, now as then?  Present truth demands present belief: present grace demands present acceptance; even as present law demands present obedience, and a present judge demands present judgment.  Is it not so?  If you propose believing and being converted a year hence, must it not be in that very way which is your duty now?  Why then delay to believer and repent?

Is not present delay, present sin?  If a thing be my duty now, then not to do it now, is not to do my duty now, which is a sin.  If a thing is not my duty now, then in not doing it now, there is of course no delay, and therefore no room for sin; it is the presentness of the duty which constitutes the sin of delay.  If I ought to believe now and repent now, and do no substitute for present action; it is, in fact, a refusal to perform duty until that time come which we have selected; and he that delays for a time, does willfully sin during that period.  To resolve to be converted, shows that you hold it to be a duty for which you are accountable; to put it off, declares that you prefer continuing in an unconverted state; thus you and your own judge. and convict yourself of present sin.  If you are a sinner, you ought not to advance one step further, but now to turn and believe in Christ with your heart unto salvation.  Why add the sin of present impenitence to that of past iniquity?  why delay; of purpose, when delay is sin?

Present unbelief entails present condemnation—for, “He that believeth not is condemned already,” but delay is unbelief, and therefore entails condemnation every time it takes place.  As long as a man returns not to God through Jesus Christ, he is sealing up his former sentence of death, by taking out a new sentence of death in addition to it.  A man’s curse therefore as a sinner is heaping up every moment, and his damnation doubling without end, whilst he puts off coming to Christ, and closing with Him as his Lord.  O, that men would then consider, what account they can gie of themselves, even to themselves, at death in judgment, and, above all, in eternity, when the find that, by the poor device of delay, they have brought themselves into the lowest perdition of Hell!  Then

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must the past pleasures of delay become the present agonies of the eternal dying!

And what excuse can you plead for such delay?  The gospel is sent to you as now you are; not as you once were or may hereafter be—the only condition is acceptance, free acceptance.  “Hear, and your sould shall live!”  What you ARE is what the gospel respects in you; what you need is what the gospel offers; to wait, therefore, on the plea of not being good enough, and of wishing first to become better, is self deceit, and a lie against the gospel. The best work you can now perform is to believe now, and to turn now; and without this, all intended preparation is but the condemnation.  Nay, so far from gaining or becoming better by delay, you lose and become worse.  Your heart becomes harder, your mind darker, your sin greater, your time shorter, your burden heavier, your love less, you terror more, heaven further, hell nearer, God more angry, the Spirit more grieved, the Saviour more dimly seen, the gospel more powerless, ministers more faint, friends more despondent, prayer less importunate, providence more unfelt, the world stronger, the flesh more exacting, Satan mightier, and the drowsy slumber of the second and eternal death, now at hand, more frequent and irresistible!  Then shall that word be fulfilled, it may be: “I will laugh at your calamity, and mock when your fear commeth upon you! Ye shall call unto me, but I will not answer!”  Reader, is that meant for you? What know you but it may?

Arise, flee—the way is before you—hold on straight before thee, but make speed—haste thee, haste thee!  Behold that Throne of Grace.  Behold that Mediator, with the blood of sprinkling, before it.  See, He is an Advocate—and Intercessor for transgressors; go up to Him now in thine heart—put the catalogue of sin into His hand—see how He smiles over thee with love inexpressible—receive the sprinkling of His blood on thy conscience.  Now lift up thine eyes.  He who sitteth on that Throne unseen is the eternal Father!  He who le3d thee to this Throne is the Blessed Spirit, the Comforter!  He who now holds thee with a kinsman’s hand before the throne, is Jesus, the “Suffering Saviour!” and that blessing which is now issuing from the throne unto thee is a free, full, present, and everlasting “Salvation by Him!”.

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RICHMOND, VA:

PRESBYTERIAN COMMITTEE OF PUBLICATION.

Last Updated on Monday, 25 March 2013 14:57
 

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Jan-Jun Posts

JANUARY 2013
07 - Government
14 - Christian Duty in Present Time of Trouble
21 - Now!
28 - Prepare for Battle

FEBRUARY
04 - Soldiers, Conquer Your Great Enemy!
11 - Blood Upon the Door Posts
18 - I Cannot Change My Own Heart
25 - The Holy Shield

MARCH
04 - Prepare to Meet Thy God
11 - To a Christian in the Army
18 - A Model Confederate Soldier
25 - The Christian Officer

APRIL
01 - Tribute to Privates
08 - Shiloh: A Sermon
15 - The Christian Soldier
22 - The Southern Soldier
29 - The Soldier's Bible

MAY
06 - The Soldier's Prayer Book
13 - Stonewall Jackson's Eulogy
20 - Prodigal Sons
27 - TBA

JUNE
03 - Advice to Soldiers
10 - We Pray for You at Home
17 - The Muffled Drum
24 - Liquor and Lincoln

Pastor "Kip" Vinson, Editor

Doug Lupo PhotoRev. "Kip" Vinson, Jr., current Pastor of Oak Level Baptist Church, Rocky Mount. SCV member since 2001, joined the Rivers Bridge Camp in Fairfax, SC. Moved to Rocky Mount, in 2005, and joined the Jesse Barnes Camp located in Wilson. Current Commander of Robert Henry Ricks Camp and North Central Brigade. B.A. History at Wofford College and an M.Div. from Gardner-Webb. Eagle Scout and received God and Country Award.

Eric Rudd, Editor

Doug Lupo PhotoI have been a member of the SCV since 2003. My ancestor, Pvt. George Washington Wright served with he 34th NC Troops, Company B, and was a farmer from Caswell County. I have been Chaplain of Col. Charles Fisher Camp #813 since 2009, which has been a unique blessing in my life. I am the 2012 recipient of The Rev. J. William Jones Christian Award and have been graced to serve people through my profession as a Funeral Director.