The Man at the Look-Out

 •  4 min. read  •  grade level: 6
TWO days out from the St. Lawrence, our gallant ship was plowing her way through the stormy seas that wash the bleak, barren coasts of Labrador.
Suddenly a cry broke upon our ears: "Ice ahead!”
It was the voice of the man at the look-out. From his point of vantage he had caught a glimpse of something that was still invisible to us as we strode up and down the lower deck.
Far on the 'eastern horizon he had seen a huge, floating mountain of ice. Should the ship by any means come into collision with that white, glistening mass, it would mean almost certain destruction. But the timely warning from the man at the look-out enabled the helmsman to change the course of the vessel before it got too close, and thus to pass in safety.
Christian workers, preachers of the gospel, tract writers and distributors, and all who seek to win souls for Christ are as men at the lookout. Our duty is to warn you that danger and destruction lie ahead.
Do not imagine that we claim to be wonderful people, or that we consider ourselves better than others. No, indeed. We are simply people that have made a discovery. We found out that we were in terrible peril. Our sins had well-nigh driven us upon the rocks of eternal perdition. But we learned where refuge and shelter were to be found. We fled to Jesus, and have obtained salvation through Him.
This is why we warn YOU. We look ahead, and though you may not see them, we see gathering upon the horizon of your life, the thick clouds of judgment and doom. We see you traveling on, heedless of your peril, and with the friendliest of feelings we flash the danger-signal across your path.
To one of His look-out men of old, the Lord said: "Give them warning from Me." (Ezek. 17.) This is what we seek to do. Will you let us warn you?
But there is another who wishes you to heed his voice. He does his best to persuade you that there is no danger, and that those who so earnestly warn you are fools and fanatics. When the Apostle Paul faithfully warned the centurion, Julius, as to the danger of the course he was bent upon pursuing, the "master and owner of the ship" contradicted him, and succeeded in making the centurion believe that all was well, and that there was no cause for alarm.
This is what Satan tries to make men believe. He whispers in the ears of one that there is “plenty of time yet." He persuades another that though some have a black prospect before them, yet all is well for those who try to lead a moral life and pay their way in the world honestly. He induces a third to launch out upon a course of religious observances in the hope of escaping the danger by that means. But these are delusions and snares.
God, who made you and loves you, tells you plainly that doom awaits the impenitent. But He also points out the true, the only, way of escape.
The atoning work which Jesus accomplished, when He shed His blood upon the cross, is the sinner's only hope. By means of it his sins may be washed away. In virtue of that precious blood, he may be made safe and happy.
How is this priceless boon to be obtained? In one way only, the way of believing on Jesus. "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved." (Acts 16:3131And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house. (Acts 16:31).)
This "believing" puzzles some people, but in reality it is very simple. It does not mean a mere conviction of the truth of the Bible, or of the Deity of Christ, or of the efficacy of the Atonement. It includes all this; but it goes further. Saving faith is the heart's confidence in Jesus as the Savior. In staking all your hopes upon Him, in trusting Him to do for you what He has promised to do for all who come to Him, you will find salvation.
Reader; do you, in this true sense of the word, believe on Jesus?
H. P. B.