“And then shall he send his angels, and shall gather together his elect from the four winds,” by Louis A. Dole

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Fryeburg, Maine, January 30, 1927

“And then shall he send his angels, and shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from the uttermost part of the earth to the uttermost part of heaven.” – Mark 13:27

Readings

Joel 2 · Mark 13:1-27 · Psalm 147

Sermon

The chapter of the Gospel of Mark from which this text is taken is sometimes called the “little Apocalypse,” for it treats of the same subjects as the Book of Revelation. Our text, then, forms a part of the Lord’s description of His Second Advent. That Advent was to be the bright and happy culmination of a series of tremendous events and dire catastrophies. The whole earth is described as being in the throes of a great convulsive struggle, nations warring against each other, kingdoms fighting one another, earthquakes, famines, pestilences, people fleeing to the mountains for refuge, others praying upon their housetops. And then the sun goes out into blackness, the moon no longer shines, the stars fall from their high places, and the very heavens tremble and seem on the point of collapse. But all at once the scene brightens. The judgment struggle is over. The bruised earth lies helpless and still. And then in Divine radiance appears the figure of the Son of man “coming in the clouds with power and great glory.”

And our text states that with His Advent there is instantly a world-wide effort to gather together into a blessed company “the elect” who in this time of judgment have been scattered far and wide. To the uttermost parts of the earth, to the farthest boundaries of heaven angels are sent on their errands. East, west, north, and south they speed on their way, and presently they are seen returning, here with one, there with another, a chosen few brought together that they may form the nucleus of a new humanity – a new church.

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“Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” by Louis A. Dole

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“Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” – Luke 10:25

Readings

Deuteronomy 28:1-14 · Matthew 19:16-30 · Psalm 16

Sermon

The terms “everlasting life” and “eternal life” sometimes are used to mean the same – that is, life without end – but there is a difference in some cases.

Everyone has everlasting life, for the evil as well as the good live forever in the spiritual world after the death of the body. No one need ask “What shall I do to inherit everlasting life” for everyone is sure to have it. But to inherit eternal life is altogether different.

No short definition of eternal life can be made that carries to another its real meaning because it involves so much. Eternal life is life directly from God, the kind of life that is in God. But for such a definition to have meaning one must know at least something of the quality of life that is in God. It is like asking “What is sunlight?” Sunlight is indeed light directly from the sun, but such a definition does not tell us exactly what sunlight is.

With the Lord there is no such thing as time. A thousand years are as a day in His sight. The angels have no idea of time. Think of an angel four thousand years old. He does not think of years, for he is merely four thousand years advanced in the love and wisdom of the Lord. So eternal life means a life of continual increase in God’s life, a life that contains unlimited unfolding of the glory of God.

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“And he answered, Fear not: for they that be with us are more than they that be with them,” by Louis A. Dole

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“And he answered, Fear not: for they that be with us are more than they that be with them.” – 2 Kings 6:16

Readings

2 Kings 6:8-23 · Revelation 7:1-3, 9-17 · Psalm 91

Sermon

The Word is more than the history of what took place in the past. The event of which our text speaks took place nearly three thousand years ago but, spiritually interpreted, it is an event that takes place today. “Thy Word is true from the beginning: and every one of thy righteous judgments endureth for ever,” It is even so. In times of distress and danger, when we are fighting against the enemies of truth and goodness, it is good to know that “they that be with us are more than they that be with them.” In fact since the Resurrection the Lord is more fully present with us than before. His love and care reach down to every individual. He is no less mindful of one person than of another, for He is love or goodness itself.

The hosts of Syria had come up in hostile array against the kingdom of Israel. Their plans had more than once been thwarted by the prophetic counsels of Elisha. Against him, therefore, they directed their efforts. Their king sent an army to the city of Dothan, where he was, in order to capture him. They came by night and compassed the city about. After stating these facts, the account proceeds as follows: “And when the servant of the man of God was risen early, and gone forth, behold, an host compassed the city both with horses and chariots. And his servant said unto him, Alas, my master! how shall we do? And he answered, Fear not: for they that be with us are more than they that be with them. And Elisha prayed, and said, Lord, I pray thee, open his eyes, that he may see. And the Lord opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and, behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha.”

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“Why seek ye the living among the dead?” by Louis A. Dole

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“Why seek ye the living among the dead?” – Luke 24:5

Readings

Isaiah 61 · Matthew 28:1-8 · Psalm 57

Sermon

The scene of the crucifixion was over. The Lord’s life in the flesh had come to its end, and His body had been placed in the tomb. This took place on a Friday. Early Sunday morning Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and other women came to the sepulchre bringing spices for the final preparation of the body. They could not do this on Saturday because of Jewish customs. When they came to the sepulchre, they found the stone which had closed the tomb rolled away. The body of Jesus was not there. It was then that the two angels in shining garments greeted them with the words of the text, “Why seek ye the living among the dead?”

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“The measure of a man, that is, of the angel,” by Louis A. Dole

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“The measure of a man, that is, of the angel.” – Revelation 21:17

Readings

Zechariah 2 · Revelation 21 · Psalm 119:32-48

Sermon

The world has made so much progress in external things that this marvelous development tends to absorb all of man’s attention. Think of the immense increase of the mechanical aids to life, of the improved means of transportation on land, sea, and air; think of the telephone, telegraph, and wireless, and of the almost innumerable conveniences for home and farm. Think of free schools, of the flood of literature from the presses, of the theatres and moving pictures. Ease and comfort are supplied with little or no effort or thought on our part. Amusement and recreation are enjoyed with little cost of personal exertion. The family may sit at home around the fireside and listen to plays, concerts, public discussions, sermons and addresses thousands of miles away in a far-off city. And now we are to have educational TV. Do we realize that in this answers will have to be given, and so the necessity of original thinking will be taken away? The result of all this is that the average man becomes a victim of sensations and ideas, never developing the habit of independent thinking and sustained effort. The wide and easy distribution of knowledge and opinion makes men susceptible to literary, scientific, political, and religious propaganda.

In this atmosphere materialistic standards are easily set up, and the achievements of men made paramount. In some cases the name of God is used and religious terms are employed, but the meaning has gone out of them.

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