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The salvation of the Gospel is present as well as prospective. To one who had always lived under ground, and never seen the sun, the promise of enjoying the sunshine in years to come would have but little meaning. His only idea of the splendor of the sun would be such as he could gather from multiplying the rays of his mining lamps. But we, who live above-ground, and enjoy the light and heat of the sun, expect to see it tomorrow, because we see it today. So we expect to be saved eternally, because we are saved in time. “Behold now is the day of salvation.” It was a devout Calvinist who wrote, “The grace that saves the soul from hell, Will save from present sin.”

The idea runs all through the Gospel that salvation is a present reality. It is something that is experienced and enjoyed from day to day. Jesus says, “Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you.” He does not say, “shall be,” as though the day of deliverance was in the future. And Paul writes, “By grace are ye saved, through faith.” Thus the salvation provided in Christ is every where spoken of as something which has a positive existence in the heart of every believer.

It is a great mistake, which many professing Christians make, that of throwing their salvation into the future. Ask them, if they are saved, and the answer is, “I hope I shall be.” What is the ground of this hope? The assent of the mind to the truth, and perhaps membership in an orthodox Church. But “the devils believe and tremble.” Yet they are devils still. It is a great blessing to be able to see the truth, and to have the courage to stand by it. But unless you go farther than to join the church even, and attend its ordinances, you can never be saved. Judas went to perdition from the bosom of the Master and the company of the Apostles. The road to hell is just as direct from the Church as it is from the world. What you need, in order that you may be saved in Heaven at last, is, to be saved—now,—from the guilt and from the power of sin, and to keep saved unto the end.

If you are in a state of salvation, you know it. You cannot have victory over impatience, over the world, over the trials of daily life, and be ignorant of the fact. If your appetites master your reason, and your conscience, you can but be aware, to some extent at least, that you are under bondage. So, when deliverance comes, you can but realize the greatness of the change. If, instead of a spirit of murmuring and fretfulness, the peace of God that passeth all understanding reigns in your heart, you must be conscious of it yourself, and it must be obvious to all around you. Then do not yield to the delusion, that, if you believe you are saved you will be saved. Take up with nothing short of present deliverance from pride and impatience, and all sinful inclinations and sinful desires. Recall the convictions you have had in other days. God has not changed. The self-denials, the separation from the world that He then required, He still requires. The cross that stood in your way then, stands in your way now. You have not gone around it. You have gone back. Yom must take it up before you can make any further progress. You do not feel as much disturbed now, as you did then, because your conscience is becoming seared. The peace which you profess. to feel is delusive. It is insensibility, and not peace. You are in danger of becoming “past feeling.” Welcome conviction. Take up the cross that lies before you. If it is laying aside ornamental attire, let it go at once. You can carry no garment beyond the grave, but the robe washed white in Jesus’ blood. If you have taken a wrong position, in regard to the work of God, denouncing as fanaticism the operations of the Spirit, hesitate not to confess it. If you have wronged others, make all the confession and the restitution that the circumstances demand. Not only your usefulness, but your soul is at stake.

If we walk in the light as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.”—I John 1:7.

Resolve to be right.

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