Saturday, 20 June 2009

Last words of saints and sinners (reposted)

When we are thinking about death, we are thinking about the ultimate reality of our existence in this life: it ends. A couple of quotes from "Last Words Of Saints And Sinners: 700 Final Quotes from the Famous, the Infamous, and the Inspiring Figures of History", Herbert Lockyer, Kregel, 1969:

1. Augustus Montague Toplady (1710-1778), will ever be famous as the author of one of the most evangelical hymns of the eighteenth century, "Rock of Ages," which was first published in 1776. During the final illness, Toplady was greatly supported by the consolations of the gospel:

"The consolations of God, to so unworthy a wretch are so abundant; that he leaves me nothing to pray for but their continuance."

Near his last, awaking from a sleep, he said:

"Oh, what delights! Who can fathom the joy of the third heaven? The sky is clear, there is no cloud; come Lord Jesus, come quickly!"

He died saying:

"No mortal man can live after the glories which God has manifested to my soul."

2. Voltaire, the noted French [atheist] and one of the most fertile and talented writers of his time, used his pen to retard and demolish Christianity. Of Christ, Voltaire said: "Curse the wretch!" He once boasted, "In twenty years Christianity will be no more. My single hand shall destroy the edifice it took twelve apostles to rear." Shortly after his death the very house in which he printed his foul literature became the depot of the Geneva Bible Society. The nurse who attended Voltaire said: "For all the wealth in Europe I would not see another infidel die." The physician, Trochim, waiting up with Voltaire at his death said that he cried out most desperately:
"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!"

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