The Illustrative Clarence Larkin

Forgive the play on words, but our Brother Clarence Larkin was an illustrator, and is known for his charts used to explain the Scripture. Born in 1850, Brother Larkin originally trained to be a mechanical engineer and draftsman. Later he became a teacher of the blind. Both of these endeavors prepared him to become the great illustrator that Brother Larkin is known to be.

But Brother Larkin also wrote many books, which are still available today. They include:

Originally an Episcopalian, Brother Larkin became a Baptist at age 32 and was ordained as a minister two years later.

At the outbreak of the “Great War,” or the “War to End All Wars” (later known as World War I) the Church sensed something momentous was occurring, and Brother Larkin was asked to give addresses on the War and Prophecy. We know today that one of the results of World War I was the capturing of the Holy Land from the Ottoman Empire, the first step in returning the People of Israel to the Land of Israel.

Three years were spent in preparation of the charts Brother Larkin felt led to illustrate, which were based upon his lectures, and for which he is so well known today.

Brother Larkin has a way of simplifying complex ideas in a way that I, personally, admire. And his writings are based upon the Word of God. I believe an excellent example of this ability is his written illustration of the simple statement of the Apostle Paul, “For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night.” (First Thessalonians 5:2)

Brother Larkin wrote:
“We see from this that when Christ comes back it will be when we are not expecting Him. He will come as a thief comes. A thief does not announce his coming. He comes for a certain purpose. He does not take everything there is in the house. He takes only the precious things. The jewels, the gold, the silver and fine wearing apparel. He does not come to stay. As soon as he secures what he is after he departs. So Jesus at the Rapture will come and take away the saints only. The thief leaves much more than he takes. He leaves the house and the furniture and the household utensils. So the Lord at the Rapture will leave the wicked and the great mass of the heathen behind, for those who will be taken will be comparatively few.”

What a wonderful picture of the Coming of the Lord Jesus, in which He will only gather up the precious souls of His Church. Praise His name!

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