Sunday, July 25

Horatius Bonar Sunday

Two things from the pen of the Scottish preacher, Horatius Bonar.
Here O My Lord, I See Thee Face To Face

Here, O my Lord, I see Thee face to face;
Here faith can touch and handle things unseen;
Here would I grasp with firmer hand Thy grace,
And all my weariness upon Thee lean.

Here would I feed upon the Bread of God;
Here drink with Thee the royal wine of heav'n;
Here would I lay aside each earthly load;
Here taste afresh the calm of sin forgiv'n.

I have no help but Thine; nor do I need
Another arm save Thine to lean upon;
It is enough, my Lord, enough indeed;
My strength is in Thy might, Thy might alone.

This is the hour of banquet and of song;
This is the heav'nly table spread for me;
Here let me feast, and, feasting, still prolong
The brief bright hour of fellowship with Thee.

Too soon we rise; the symbols disappear;
The feast, though not the love, is past and gone;
The bread and wine remove, but Thou art here,
Nearer than ever still our Shield and Sun.

Feast after feast thus comes and passes by,
Yet passing, points to the glad feast above,
Giving sweet foretastes of the festal joy,
The Lamb's great bridal-feast of bliss and love.
From what I suspect is one of the many tracts Horatius Bonar penned rather than a sermon, Man's Dislike of a Present God.
"They say unto God, Depart from us; for we desire not the knowledge of your ways." Job 21:14

Yet they say to God, "Leave us alone! We have no desire to know your ways." Job 21:14

The men who speak thus are not atheists. They do not say there is no God. They may be scoffers, blasphemers, ungodly, but they are not atheists. They whom Job describes are worldly men. The world, with its riches, its possessions, its pleasures, its friendships, is their all. They have nothing beyond it, and they do not wish anything beyond it. They are satisfied. They love the world, and are resolved to make the best of it that they can. When anything comes in between it and them, or threatens to prevent their enjoying it, such as pain, or sickness, or death, they thrust it away. They do not ask whether the intervention by God may not, after all, be true and important; it mars their enjoyment of the world, and so must not be for a moment entertained.

In our text we have WORLDLINESS VERSUS GOD. For it is worldliness that is here speaking out. It is not man contending against man because of injury or encroachment, it is not man protesting against pain, or mortality, or life's brevity, it is man protesting against God. God seems to him as a dark shadow overclouding all his joy. How is this?
Thus the age tries to get rid of God. It does so, because it dreads Him; it has no relish for Him; His presence is a gloomy shadow; His nearness would interfere with all worldly schemes and pleasures. Therefore men say, "Depart." The old Pagans never said to Jupiter, Depart; for they looked on him as in sympathy with their sins, and lusts, and pleasure. But to the living and true God men say, "Depart", because they feel that they cannot have both Him and their sins. They cannot clothe Him with the robes of their own worldliness.

He has not departed. In love He lingers, seeking to bless. He knows the blank His departure makes, and that nothing can fill it. Therefore He lingers; yearning over the sons of men; entreating them to take Him for their portion and all.