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    OUR DUTY TO WATCH

    VERSES 42-44: “Watch therefore; for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come. But know this, that if the good man of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up. Therefore be ye also ready; for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.”EMTF 84.1

    They who hide themselves behind the saying that that day will come as a thief, and that therefore they cannot know, will find when it comes that they have only insured their own destruction by willfully placing themselves beside those who did not know that the flood was, coming, because they refused to heed the counsel God sent by the mouth of his prophets. They were destroyed because they knew not; and they knew not because they would not heed the warning. And is the word of the Son of God of less consequence than that of Noah?—By no means. If they were destroyed who refused the testimony of Noah, how shall they escape who shut their eyes and ears against the words of warning given by the Lord Jesus? Oh, that men would be wise, and listen to the Saviour’s counsel to watch, to observe the signs, and to know when the day is near, that they might not be taken away in the Lord’s anger!EMTF 84.2

    “Unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.” Hebrews 9:28. None would look for him—none would be watching and waiting for him—if they could have no knowledge that he was near to come. None would sound an alarm, and call upon the inhabitants of the earth to tremble because the day of the Lord is near, if they had no evidence from the words of prophecy that it is near. Joel 2:1. We are thankful that our heavenly Father, in the greatness of his mercy, has given us signs, and warnings, and such strong assurances, that we may know when the day is near, so that it shall not come as a thief upon the believing soul; thankful that we are thus afforded the means of escaping from the ruin that- is impending, and of sharing in the triumph of the redeemed followers of the Lamb.EMTF 85.1

    The present watching, waiting position requires much faith and patience. Says Paul: “Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompense of reward. For ye have need of patience, that ye have done the will of God [in proclaiming the coming of Christ], ye might receive the promise. For yet a little while, and He that shall come will come, and will not tarry. Now the just shall live by faith; that if any man, draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him. But we are not of them who draw hack unto perdition, but of them that believe to the saving of the soul.” Hebrews 10:35-30.EMTF 85.2

    Says James:,“Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and utter rain. Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts; for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh.” Chap. 5:7, 8.EMTF 86.1

    The present position and present duty of God’s people are defined in Revelation 14:12: “Here is the patience of the saints; here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.”EMTF 86.2

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