C.N. Douglas, comp. Forty Thousand Quotations: Prose and Poetical. 1917.
Palestine was the West Point and Annapolis for the world. In that little country God was training up a people out of whom, when the fullness of the time should come, His gospel cadets should emerge, fitted by all the training of all their national history for going out among the heathen and proclaiming the unsearchable riches of Christ.
A man may make his way across the Atlantic in a skiff, for all I know; but if you are intending to cross the sea, take my advice, and secure passage in a first-class steamer, and you will be more likely to get there. So it is with these heathen millions. I do not know but some of them may drift, and we shall find them in the city of God. But I do know that by giving them the gospel, by building up and supporting among them a Christian church, we shall greatly multiply their chances for heaven.
Every impulse and stroke of missionary power on earth is from the heart of Christ. He sows, and there is a harvest. He touches nations, and there arises a brotherhood, not only civilized by His light, but sanctified by His love. The isles of the ocean wait for Him. He spreads His net and gathers of every kind, and lo! the burden of the sea is not only fishes, but fishermen, who go and gather and come again. If there are activity, free giving, ready going, a full treasury, able men who say, Here am I, send me, it is because through all the organization Christ lives, and His personal Spirit works. There is no other possible spring for that enthusiasm.
The movement has indeed been slow, and not such as man would have expected; but it has been analogous to the great movements of God in His providence and in His works. So, if we may credit the geologists, has this earth reached its present state. So have moved on the great empires. So retribution follows crime. So rise the tides. So grows the tree with long intervals of repose and apparent death. So comes on the spring, with battling elements and frequent reverses, with snow-banks and violets, and, if we had no experience, we might be doubtful what the end would be. But we know that back of all this, beyond these fluctuations, away in the serene heavens, the sun is moving steadily on; that these very agitations of the elements and seeming reverses, are not only the sign, but the result of his approach, and that the full warmth and radiance of the summer noontide are sure to come. So, O Divine Redeemer, Sun of Righteousness, come Thou! So will He come. It may be through clouds and darkness and tempest; but the heaven where He is, is serene; He is traveling in the greatness of His strength; and as surely as the throne of God abides, we know He shall yet reach the height and splendor of the highest noon, and that the light of millennial glory shall yet flood the earth.