Open as PDF
(The following is an excerpt from Spiritual Equipment for the Last Days, a book by Charles Usher. It was originally published by Marshall Brothers, LTD., London, England, July 1920.)
We are in the last hours of this dispensation. The hand of the clock is approaching the hour of twelve. It is the dark hour of midnight, but the darkest hour is just before the dawn.
The Church is rapidly drifting into a state of apostasy, further and further away from God.
The War has left the world chaotic and the Church paralysed.
Dark forces have been liberated which are producing as evil an effect upon the Church as upon the world.
The late conflict has left problems for the Church to face, as difficult to handle as those with which the world is battling.
The Cross of Christ is the light that will illuminate the present darkness.
We need a fresh revelation of sin, for it is through sin that we have lost our way, and it is through Christ's death on the Cross that we are won back and restored to God.
See I Peter iii. 18—"Christ...hath once suffered for sins...that He might bring us to God."
The reason why many lose the sense of the sinfulness of sin is that they get away from the reality of Christ's atoning death, for it is only at the Cross that we get a vision of the depths and misery of sin.
Calvary is a revelation of man's hatred to God's authority—a hatred which manifested itself in the blackest, darkest deed ever committed.
We are told that the Cross is the "Touchstone of Faith"; that is blessedly true! but it is also true that it is the criterion of the human heart. It reveals man in his true character.
The Church has lost sight of the Cross, and has therefore lost sight of the awfulness of sin. She has wandered from the place where sin is seen in God's light, and where the soul is led to cry out, "I have crucified my Lord."
What astonishes one in these days is the sin in the Church. How awful it is that Christians can sin and be unmoved by it!
God's people are sinning—sinning in the heart, sinning in the mind, sinning in the pulpit, sinning in the pew,—sinning in spite of Calvary and of all that the Bible reveals of the horror and degradation of sin!
Child of God! go back to Calvary and take the sinner's place. Let the Cross melt the hardness and cause the tears to flow!