OLD AGE

"Hearken unto me, O house of Jacob, and all the remnant of the house of Israel, which are borne by me from the belly, which are carried from the womb: And even to your old age I am he; and even to hoar hairs will I carry you: I have made, and I will bear, even I will carry, and will deliver you." Isaiah 46:3,4

Probably the greater percentage of those who read "The Remnant" could be classified in that group who have reached what the prophet called "old age." Any observer may see that among our Old School churches the majority of both membership and attenders has always been made up of what the world calls "Senior Citizens". We shall not use that term in this dissertation, preferring Isaiah's appellation, "Old Age".

In years gone by we often wondered why it was that so few youth and young married couples were not more abundant among the old Predestinarian remnant. It seemed that old grey heads, and stooped shoulders comprised the bulk of the congregations wherever we attended. In the passing of time, however, the question was removed with a glorious answer. The churches of the world and the New School lay great emphasis on youth and young wage earners; for therein lies their fortification and strength. Their resources, their money, and their labors are gotten more readily from those age groups. Not so with the Old School, that blessed people known as "The Remnant". The Old School meets to worship, while the New School meets to heap mammon to themselves, and enlarge their numbers.

Our text makes it very clear that the remnant of the house of Israel have been borne by God even while in their mother's womb. And as the old Prophet recorded, "Even down to old age" God is yet with them. When the hairs of their head become white God has promised to carry them, for He has made them, and He will bear them. He will carry, and He will deliver. The Scriptures teach that "He that endureth to the end shall be saved." None have ever endured, to our knowledge, but those who have been given the grace of endurance. Only deliverance in Jesus will do to carry us to the end. If God were not pleased to bear us even in old age, then, pray tell, who among us could endure to the end? None!

Others have said before us that there is nothing pretty about old age: they spoke of nature. We heartily agree. Infirmities, poor health, disease, loss of faculties, the departure of friends, the passing of loved ones, the simple declining of all which once was vital is a part of old age. But is this grounds for despair or gloom? We think not! To our humble understanding, those described by the Prophet as being in old age are among the more blessed of the Remnant, for you see, they have become ripe for glory. They have many sweet reflections to view back on, the great blessings of God seeing them through the many trials, the passing through the dark waters, the gloomy nights, the horrifying temptations, the doubts, besetting sins, and the other things that so vexed them down through life. These we call their experiences. Those just beginning their pilgrim journey know not what great things the Lord has done until they too have experienced such. But, those in old age can treasure up these sweet memories to their dying bed. They have the great assurance that what God has begun He will finish. Though we often lose sight of these things, from time to time the Lord refreshes the elect one that He yet bears and carries, even to deliver.

It is the sincere belief of those who publish this paper that you scattered ones who may have to use walkers, or canes, or crutches to get about; who may feel that every step is tedious, and yet still desire to meet with the flock of God are greatly and richly blessed. Though you might not have the privilege of the solemn assembly of the saints as some do you do have the sweet promise that God will never leave or forsake. You have your Bible, you have the writings of the saints gone by, and more than all else the sweet experience that through the years God has never left, nor forsaken, nor failed. To whom would you liken Him then, or to who can He be compared? None - absolutely none! No, the saint of God must say their experience thus far is that God has ever bore His remnant up, and even now in old age the testimony grows sweeter, more precious, and more vital; and though all might forsake you, and all else fails there remains yet a great refuge in the storm, a great rock in the wilderness; the Holy Son of God will ever be your refuge.

In this same chapter Isaiah exhorted in verse 9, "Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me." Those in old age especially, can say, "It is so", "It is so." He further said He (God) declared the end from the beginning. Does that not in some measure mean that from the beginning of your life He had declared the end? Then it is all certain, and it is sure, and in His predestinating love He has borne you up and carried you safely. Then too, by His Holy Spirit He taught you the glories and the beauties of King Jesus. The declaring the end from the beginning affirms that His counsel shall stand and He will do all His pleasure. We may be certain, we may know without a hesitation, that the pleasure of God certainly included the bearing up those who in their old age feel to need more than ever a Saviour to deliver.

We are very thankful for the knowledge of so many of you with whom we have corresponded in time past who even in extreme old age still bear testimony to the love of the precious truths in Christ Jesus. May He ever keep you and encourage you and when that time comes that the Lord says, "Child come home" may peace be your lot.

"E'en down to old age, all my people shall prove
My sovereign, eternal, unchangeable love;
And when hoary hairs shall their temples adorn,
Like lambs they shall still in my bosom be borne.

J.P.
The Remnant
Volume 1 - April-May, 1987