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    THE FLOOD

    In comparing Noah’s days and ours, the Lord continues: “For as in the days that were before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, and knew not until the flood came and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.” A picture of the present condition of the mass of mankind is here drawn. How dark the features! The people of the last generation will be like those before the flood while the ark was preparing. Noah preached, and warned them of the coming flood, and they mocked. He built the ark, and they scoffed and jeered. He was a preacher of righteousness. His works were calculated to give edge to, and set home to the heart, what he preached. Every righteous sermon, and every blow struck in building the ark, condemned a careless, scoffing world. As the time drew nearer, the people were more careless, more hardened, more bold and impudent, and their condemnation surer. Noah and his family were alone. And could one family know more that all the world? The ark is a matter of ridicule, and Noah is regarded as a willful bigot. But the Lord calls Noah into the ark. And by the hand of Providence, the beasts are led into the ark; and the Lord shuts Noah in. This is regarded at first by the scoffing multitude as some thing wonderful; but it is soon explained away by the wiser ones so as to calm their fears, and they breathe easier.SEADV 24.4

    The day of expectation finally arrives. The sun rises as usual, and the heavens are clear. “Now where is old Noah’s flood? is heard from a thousand impious lips. The farmer is caring for his herds and lands, and the mechanic is pursuing his work of building. On this very day, some are being joined in marriage. With many, it is a day of unusual feasting and sports. And while all are looking to long years of future prosperity and happiness, suddenly the heavens gather blackness. Fear fills every heart. The windows of heaven open, and the rain in torrents descends. “The fountains of the great deep are broken up,” and here and there come gushing up rivers of waters. The valleys are fast filling up, and thousands are swept away in death. Some flee to the highest points of land; but the water fast follows them up. Men bear their wives and children to the mountains, but are obliged to part with them there to drown, while they climb the highest trees. But soon they,too, are covered with water, so that there is not a resting-place for Noah’s dove. All are still in death. Horrid death! made still more horrible by being in consequence of slighted mercy! But where is Noah? Ah! safe in the ark, borne upon the billows. Safe from the flood; for God “shut him in.”SEADV 25.1

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