Some of the Lord's people seem to think that the return of our blessed Saviour is an unpractical truth. I know no truth that is more practical in God's holy Word, and we are distinctly told that those who have this glorious hope of His coming in their hearts will "purify themselves even as He is pure." It is indeed a blessed hope, and I am exceedingly thankful that very early in my Christian life this subject was brought before me. A friend gave me a string of passages of Scripture. They were arranged without any note or comment. He suggested to me to go prayerfully through them. It took me a considerable time, many weeks, before I had carefully read and considered them in all their context. The result was that it brought me to see that the hope of the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ is a paramount motive given us in the New Testament for earnest, holy service here. It also gives us great cheer and encouragement in the trials and persecutions that necessarily attend following the Lord Jesus Christ fully.
Someone spoke about it as cutting the nerve of missionary effort. I wish to bear testimony that it has been the greatest personal spur to me in missionary service. If I had not seen that this truth taught in the Word of God is not the conversion of the world in this dispensation, then it would have been almost impossible to continue one's work among the heathen. But seeing that we are to evangelize the world in this dispensation in order that a people may be gathered out for the Lord, I have felt cheer and encouragement; and in every place where He has taken His servants, He has put His seal upon the work, and gathered some out for Himself. This belief, that the Lord would have "the Gospel preached as a witness in all the world, and then shall the end come," has been a very great inspiration to me in seeking to carry the Gospel into districts in which it had not been previously proclaimed. Our marching orders are clear, to "preach the Gospel to every creature.". . .
Should we not then seek to hasten the day of His return by doing all that in us lies to carry the Gospel everywhere?
JAMES HUDSON TAYLOR
China Inland Mission Review