“We are living in the age which lies between the two blazing beacons of the Divine appearings and we are called to hasten from one to the other. The sacramental host of God’s elect is marching on from the one appearing to the other with hasty feet. We have everything to hope for in the last appearing, as we have everything to trust to in the first appearing—and we have now to wait with patient hope throughout that weary interval which intervenes! Paul calls it, “this present world.” This marks its fleeting nature. It is present, but it is scarcely future, for the Lord may come so soon and thus end it all. It is present, now, but it will not be present long. It is but a little time and He who will come shall come and will not tarry. Now it is this “present world.” Oh, how present it is! How sadly it surrounds us!”
Yet, by faith, we count these present things to be unsubstantial as a dream and we look to the things which are not seen and not present, as being real and eternal! We pass through this world as men on pilgrimage. We traverse an enemy’s country. Going from one manifestation to another, we are as birds migrating on the wing from one region to another— there is no rest for us by the way. We are to keep ourselves as loose as we can from this country through which we make our pilgrimage, for we are strangers and foreigners and here we have no continuing city. We hurry through this Vanity Fair—before us lies the Celestial City and the coming of the Lord who is the King thereof! As voyagers cross the Atlantic and so pass from shore to shore, so do we speed over the waves of this ever-changing world to the Glory Land of the bright appearing of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!”
…Oh that all of us were ardent, fervent, vigorous, zealous! Come, Holy Spirit, and quicken us! We may not go about to get this by our own efforts and energies, but God will work it by His Grace. Grace given us in Christ is the fountainhead of all holy impulse. O heavenly Grace, come like a flood at this time and bear us right away! Oh that those of you who have never felt the Grace of God may be enabled to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ as to His first appearing! Then, trusting in His death upon the Cross, you will learn to look for His second coming upon the Throne of God and you will rejoice in it! Unto His great name be Glory forever and ever! Amen.”
– from C. H. Spurgeon’s sermon, “The Two Appearings and The Discipline of Grace,” 1886.