How many more years will I live?

(John MacDuff, "Sunsets on the Hebrew Mountains")

The king said to Barzillai, "Come over with me and
stay with me in Jerusalem, and I will provide for you."
But Barzillai answered the king, "How many more
years will I live
, that I should go up to Jerusalem
with the king?" 2 Samuel 19:33-34

PLEASURE, shaking in her hands her crowns,
cries, "Come over with me!"

MAMMON, clinking his bags of gold, cries,
"Come over with me!"


AMBITION, pointing to the hazy mountaintop,
and her coveted palace gleaming in the sun,
cries, "Come over with me!"

The day will come when these things will yield
no pleasure; when they shall be seen in their
true light, as the empty baubles of an hour!

Oh, what though you may have all that now
caters to the pride of life . . .
  affluence,
  prosperity,
  success in business,
  "gaining the whole world;" are you imperilling
or impoverishing your immortal soul?


But Barzillai answered the king, "How many
more years will I live
, that I should go up to
Jerusalem with the king?" 2 Samuel 19:34

What a solemn question for us all, amid the daily
occurring proofs of our frailty and mortality. Oh,
what a motto to bear about with us continually
amid the wear and tear of life!

YOUNG MAN! with the flash of young hope in your
eye; existence extending in interminable vista before
you; pause ever and always on the enchanted highway,
and put the solemn question to yourself, "How many
more years will I live?
"

MAN OF BUSINESS! in availing yourself of new openings
in trade, accepting new responsibilities and anxieties,
involving yourself in new entanglements, have you
stopped at the threshold and probed yourself with
the question, "How many more years will I live?"

CHILD OF PLEASURE! plunging into the midst of
foolish excitement; the whirl of intoxicating gaiety;
have you ever, in returning, jaded, and weary, and
worn
from the heated ballroom, flung yourself on your
pillow, and sunk into a feverish dream, with the question
haunting you, "How many more years will I live?"

FRUITLESS PROFESSOR! who, with the mere form of
godliness, are yet destitute of every practical active
Christian virtue; you who have lived a useless life.
Have you ever seriously pondered the question,
"How many more years will I live?"




HOME       QUOTES       SERMONS       BOOKS