In this brief life of "three score years and ten," man should seek to know the truth, for there are many ways that seem right unto a man "but the end thereof are the ways of death." "Consider the end." -- Chilo.
It cannot be that man, so "fearfully and wonderfully made," and, "made in the image and likeness of God," can expect nothing beyond this life. An epitaph on the tombstone of a little child who died and was buried read, -- "If I was so soon to be done for, I wonder what I was begun for?"
We cannot believe that we were originated, simply for the purpose of struggling through this life to die forever and be forgotten. There must be something beyond, it is a reasonable expectation.
So the object of this book is to show that man was placed upon this earth for a purpose; that he was created by the same power that created the earth, and the universe that is about us; that this creative power is God; that through the inspiration of the Prophets, Patriarchs, and through Jesus Christ, the Son of God, and his Apostles, there has been given to man the Bible, which contains all the necessary instruction for man's well being in "this life," and how he should live to obtain salvation for the "future life," that the Bible is the inspired word of God, which inspiration is proven by the prophecies of the Bible, the "Book of Nature," Miracles, Astronomy, and many other infallible proofs.
Much evidence is given to show that Saturday, the seventh day of the week, is the Sabbath given to man by God in the beginning, that the day was later changed by man to Sunday, the first day of the week; that Christ, who once came to this earth, -- lived, and died upon the cross, was resurrected, ascended to heaven, -- from whence he will come again to this earth, to claim the righteous and destroy the wicked; that the righteous will eventually inhabit this, the "new earth," throughout the endless ages of eternity, after sin and the curse have been removed.
Much proof is given to show that we are now living in "the last days" of this earth's history; when "men are running to and fro, and knowledge is being increased," that Christ will soon come, and that those who are worthy, will ascend with him to the Paradise above to enjoy eternal life, while the "doubting, unbelieving, scoffers," who have cast God's word aside, will be punished with everlasting destruction from the face of the earth, and from the presence of God.
The Bible is shown to be a beacon light, which, through its historical prophecies, shows man where he is in this world's history, and shows him the way to the "kingdom of heaven," through Christ who says, "I am the way."
The lives of so many are crowded with the cares of this life, that the end comes upon them "unawares," and unprepared, and they are "weighed in the balances and found wanting," and thus, the great object of life, Salvation, has been missed.
"The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; and to depart from evil is understanding," -- Job 28:28.
In 1892, I graduated from the Biblical Department of a Seventh-Day Adventist Denominational School. Soon after, I went to the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, where I graduated from the Medical Department in 1899.
Under influences adverse to christian growth, I allowed myself to drift far from God and religious practices, into the "ways of the world." Like the Prodigal Son in the parable of Christ; he left his father's house and wandered into a far country where he wasted his substance in riotous living. He finally came to realize the error of his way and said, -- "I will arise and go to my father," so he returned and it is said that "his father saw him afar off and had compassion, and ran and fell upon his neck and kissed him."
The Prodigal said, "I have sinned against heaven and in thy sight -- and am no more worthy to be called thy son." But with the father there was rejoicing because of the repentance, and return of the son, and they made merry, because "my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost and is found." -- See Luke 15:11-32.
Many times, during all these years, the thoughts of my head upon my bed have troubled me, and, like the Prodigal Son in the parable, I would never feel satisfied until I returned to my Father's house.
"If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." There is much rejoicing over the return of a sinner to the heavenly fold.
In this book, all statements have been based upon Bible texts, historical facts, and scientific knowledge. There can be no more solid foundation than this.
Men have originated many theories differing one with another, but there can be only one right. Christ says, "I am the way, the truth and the life," -- "neither is there salvation in any other." We are not rated at the Bar of Heaven by our conformity to the "doctrines of men", or some pet theory of our own with which we have become satisfied, -- but we are judged by the Word of God, and our eternal life, or our eternal death, depends upon our conformity to that word; -- consequently:
It seems most important that we should not make any mistake in a question so vital, and far reaching in its results.
"Search the Scriptures, for in them ye think ye have eternal life, and they are they which testify of me." "I am the way, the truth and the life." "There is none other name under heaven, given among men, whereby we must be saved." -- Acts 4:12.
If through the pages of this book I am enabled to enlighten some weary wanderer upon "this bank and shoal of time," -- then my effort will not have been in vain.
"If you have knowledge let others light their candles by it," -- Margaret Fuller.
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