These are the words, the LAST words of some famous men who chose in this life not to believe in God, Jesus or heaven:
Talleyrand Perigord: "I am suffering the pangs of the damned."
Merabeau: "Give me laudanum that I may not think of eternity."
Francis Newport: "Oh, that I was to lie a thousand years upon the fire that never is quenched, to purchase the favor of God, and be united to Him again! But it is a fruitless wish. Millions of millions of years would bring me no nearer to the end of my torments than one poor hour. Oh, eternity, eternity! forever and forever! Oh, the insufferable pangs of hell!"
Thomas Hobbs: a skeptic: "If I had the whole world, I would give it to live one day. I shall be glad to find a hole to creep out of the world at. About to take a leap into the dark!"
Thomas Paine: the noted American infidel and author: "I would give worlds if I had them, that The Age of Reason had never been published. O Lord, help me! Christ, help me! O God, what have I done to suffer so much? But there is no God! But if there should be, what will become of me hereafter? Stay with me, for God's sake! Send even a child to stay with me, for it is hell to be alone. If ever the Devil had an agent, I have been that one."
Francois Voltaire: the noted French infidel. He was one of the most fertile and talented writers and strove to retard and demolish Christianity. His cry in health concerning Christ was, "Curse the wretch!" He said once, "In twenty years, Christianity will be no more. My single hand shall destroy the edifice it took twelve apostles to rear." Some years after his death, his very printing press was employed in printing New Testaments.
The Christian physician, who attended Voltaire during the last illness, has left a testimony concerning the departure of this poor lost soul. He wrote to a friend as follows: "When I compare the death of a righteous man, which is like the close of a beautiful day, with that of Voltaire, I see the difference between bright, serene weather and a black thunderstorm. It was my lot that this man should die under my hands. Often did I tell him the truth.
'Yes, my friend', he would often say to me, 'you are the only one who has given me good advice. Had I but followed it I would not be in the horrible condition in which I now am. I have swallowed nothing but smoke. I have intoxicated myself with the incense that turned my head. You can do nothing for me. Send me a mad doctor!Have compassion on me-I am mad!'"
The physician goes on to say: "I cannot think of it without shuddering. As soon as he saw that all the means he had employed to increase his strength had just the opposite effect, death was constantly before his eyes. From this moment, madness took possession of his soul. He expired under the torments of the furies."
At another time his doctor quoted Voltaire as saying: "I am abandoned by God and man! I will give you half of what I am worth if you will give me six months' life. Then
I shall go to hell; and you will go with me. O Christ! O Jesus Christ!"
Charles IX: This cruel wretch, urged on by his inhumane mother, gave the order for the massacre of the Huguenots in which 15,000 souls were slaughtered in Paris alone, and 100,000 in other sections of France, for no other reason than that they owned Christ as their master. The guilty King died bathed in blood bursting from his own veins. To his physicians he said in his last hours: "Asleep or awake, I see the mangled forms of the Huguenots passing before me. They drip with blood. They point at their open wounds. Oh! that I had spared at least the little infants at the breast! What blood! I know not where I am. How will all this end? What shall I do? I am lost forever! I know it. Oh, I have done wrong. God pardon me!"
David Strauss: outstanding representative of German rationalism, after spending years of his life trying to dispense with God: "My philosophy leaves me utterly forlorn! I feel like one caught in the merciless jaws of an automatic machine, not knowing at what time one of its great hammers may crush me!"
Sir Thomas Scott: "Until this moment I thought there was neither a God nor a hell. Now I know and feel that there are both, and I am doomed to perdition by the judgment of the Almighty."
M. F. Rich: an atheist: "I would rather lie on a stove and broil for a million years than go into eternity with eternal horrors that hang over my soul! I have given immortality for gold; and its weight sinks me into endless, hopeless, helpless hell."
Now let us take the contrast. Here are believers in the Lord Jesus Christ who have accepted the grace of God for salvation for both time and eternity.
Jordan Antie: "The chariot has come, and I am ready to step in."
Margaret Prior: "Eternity rolls up before me like a sea of glory."
Martha McCrackin: "How bright the room! How full of angels."
Dr. Cullen: "I wish I had the power of writing: I would describe how pleasant it is to die."
B. S. Bangs: "The sun is setting: mine is rising. I go from this bed to a crown. Farewell."
John Arthur Lyth: "Can this be death? Why, it is better than living! Tell them I die happy in Jesus." Trotter: "I am in perfect peace, resting alone on the blood of Christ. I find this amply sufficient with which to enter the presence of God."
Mrs. Mary Frances: "Oh, that I could tell you what joy I possess! I am full of rapture. The Lord doth shine with such power upon my soul. He is come! He is come!"
Philip Heck: "How beautiful! The opening heavens around me shine!"
Sir David Brewster: inventor of the kaleidoscope: "I will see Jesus: I shall see Him as He is. I have had the light for many years. Oh, how bright it is! I feel so safe and satisfied!"
Charles Wesley: author of over 4,000 published hymns: "I shall be satisfied with Thy likeness. Satisfied!"
John Wesley: "The best of all is, God is with me."
Abbot: "Glory to God! I see heaven sweetly opened before me."
Augustus Toplady; author of "Rock of Ages": "The consolations of God to such an unworthy wretch are so abundant that He leaves me nothing to pray for but a continuance of them. I enjoy heaven already in my soul."
John Quincy Adams: When John Quincy Adams was eighty years of age a friend said to him: "Well, how is John Quincy Adams?" "Thank you," he said, "John Quincy Adams is quite well. But the house where he lives is becoming dilapidated. It is tottering. Time and the seasons have nearly destroyed it, and it is becoming quite uninhabitable. I shall have to move out soon. But John Quincy Adams is quite well, thank you." At death he said: "This is the last of earth. I am content."
Mrs. Catherine Booth: wife of the general of the 'Salvation Army: "The waters are rising, but so am I. I am not going under, but over. Do not be concerned about dying; go on living well, the dying will be right."
Elizabeth B. Browning: an English poetess who had said: "We want the touch of Christ's hand upon our 'literature.' At death's door, she said: "It is beautiful!"
John Bunyan: author of Pilgrim's Progress: "Weep not for me, but for yourselves. I go to the Father of our Lord ' Jesus Christ, who will, through the mediation of His blessed Son, receive me, though a sinner, where I hope we shall meet to sing the new song, and remain everlastingly happy, ' world without end."
John Calvin: the French Protestant Reformer at Geneva: "Thou, Lord, bruisest me, but I am abundantly satisfied, since it is from Thy hand."
Adoniram Judson: American missionary to Burma. He wrote: "Come, Holy Spirit, Dove Divine," and other hymns. He died at sea and his body was committed to the great deep. He said: "I go with the gladness of a boy bounding away from school. I feel so strong in Christ."
A. J. Gordon: As he lay in the chamber in West Brookline Street, Boston, looked up and with one radiant burst of joy cried: "Victory! Victory!" and so he went home.
Dr. William Anderson: of Dallas, Texas: He seemed better though still very ill. His mother was sitting in the room with him. He gently called to her, "Come over here a minute." As she approached his bed, he said, "I want to tell you something. I am going to beat you to heaven." And with a smile he shut his eyes and was gone.
Dr. Sewall: an old Methodist, when dying shouted aloud the praises of God. His friends said, "Dr. Sewall, do not exert yourself; whisper, doctor, whisper." "Let angels whisper," said he, "but the soul cleansed from sin by the blood of Christ, a soul redeemed from death and hell, just on the threshold of eternal glory-oh, if I had a voice that would reach from pole to pole, I would proclaim it to all the world: Victory! Victory! through the blood of the Lamb!"
Samuel Rutherford: When he was dying said: "I am in the happiest pass to which man ever came. Christ is mine, and I am His; and there is nothing now between me and resurrection, except-Paradise."
When you die, on which side of the ledger will your words be?