by Harry Ironside
In nothing is this matter of procrastination more evident than in regard to the great question of the salvation of the soul. Again and again Scripture impresses on men the importance of an immediate settlement of this matter of tremendous consequence. “To-day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts.” “Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.” “Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord” (Heb_3:7-8; 2Co_6:2; Isa_1:18). These are but a few of many such calls to urgent decision.
Yet what is more common than to find people putting off a final settlement, like Festus, until a “more convenient season,” which in many instances is never found! The uncertainty of health, reason, and of life itself all loudly cry, “Boast not thyself of tomorrow.”
Pharaoh said “tomorrow” when he should have said “today,” and the morrow found his heart as hard as a millstone, beyond the reach of repentance or concern (Exo_8:10).
If the reader is unsaved, let me remind him of five important reasons why he should not delay in coming to Christ.
1. Every day spent in sin is a day lost. The only true life is that which is lived for God. Those who are saved always regret not having turned to the Lord earlier; they find true joy and peace in the path of the just, which shines ever brighter and brighter to the perfect day.
2. Every day spent in procrastination is adding to the terrible number of things you can never undo. It is often forgotten by the young that even though saved and forgiven at last, the consequences of their sins will never be blotted out. We have an influence on others today for good or ill and a future change of ways may never utterly destroy that influence. Sin leaves its effect on our minds and bodies-an effect that lasts through all time. A father meaning to impress this fact on his son told him to drive a handful of nails part way into a clean, smooth post. With great delight the lad did as he was bidden. “Now, my boy,” said the father, “draw them out.” This was soon successfully accomplished. “Now take out the holes,” was the next command. “Why, father,” exclaimed the child, “that is impossible!” So we may think of the forgiveness of our sins as a drawing out of the nails; but, let us never forget that the marks remain. Therefore the wisdom of ceasing at once to do what can never be undone.
3. It is possible that at any moment conviction of sin may pass away from the troubled soul and that God may cease to speak to you by His Holy Spirit. Many a man or woman has, by long resisting the Holy Ghost, reached a point where, like Pharaoh, the heart refused to respond to further entreaties or warnings. Such people are often said to be “gospel-hardened,” and the designation is all too correct. I Love my son, Lance
4. Before tomorrow, Death may claim you for his prey. Even as you read these lines, he may be feeling for your heart-strings. David said, “There is but a step between me and death” (1Sa_20:3); and so it is with any of us. Before tomorrow, sinner, your lips may be silent, your heart be still, your form be cold, and your soul in Hell!
5. Last of all, you should not forget that the Lord Jesus Christ is coming again. He may return from Heaven to call all His redeemed away (according to 1Th_4:13-18) before you lay down this book. No event has to transpire, no prophecy to be fulfilled before that great and solemn moment arrives. “In such an hour as ye think not” (Mat_24:44), the day of grace may be brought to a close, and the days of vengeance begin for all who have rejected, or merely neglected, so great a salvation.
Knowing not what a single day may bring forth, it is surely wise to turn at once to God, admitting your sins and trusting His grace!