XC. The Darkest of Deaths.

JOHN viii. 24. “For
if ye believe not that I am He, ye shall die in your sins.”

THESE words were spoken by our Lord to men who
seemed determined by the maddest of all rejections of
mercy to make their own salvation a matter of sheer
impossibility. We have here—
I. The darkest of all deaths—dying in one’s sins. It is
not merely to be struck dead in a particular action, as Lot’s
wife was. It is—
1. To die in their company. A man’s sins have walked
with him from youth, they have kept near to him through
manhood, and now he has to die with them. Can you
bear the thought of having your sins going with you to the
frontier of time, and then, when you cross the line into
eternity, having the same sins going with you there.
2. To die in their guilt. One unpardoned sin is enough
to sink a man to perdition—think of the sins of a whole
lifetime.
3. Sometimes it means to die in the power of sin. It is
terrible when men at the last hour wake up to the con-
sciousness that they are dying in their sins.
4. To die in their doom. As the tree falls so it must
lie. When the last breath is drawn the man and his sins
have to be together to all eternity.
II. What leads to that darkest of deaths. Some say,
” This applies only to those who lead vicious lives.” But
it is not said, “Those that commit the grossest sins of the
flesh shall die in them.” It is not said, “The harlot, the
profligate, the drunkard shall die in their sins.” Nothing
more than unbelief is required to ruin you through all
eternity.
Unbelief is the condemning sin because it is a sin against
the Divine provision for salvation.
A. G. B. (possibly Alfred Barry, D.D.)

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