WORK WHILE IT IS DAY
Delivered by JOHN CHURCHMAN, 17th of 2nd Month, 1757, at East Nottingham
Journal of John Churchman. In: Evans, William & Evans, Charles, eds. Friends' Library,
Vol. VI. Philadelphia: Joseph Rakestraw, 1842, page 244.
This is The Quaker Homiletics Online Anthology, Part 2: The 18th Century.
A certain sentence has been presented to the view of my mind, which seemed to contain gentle
engaging caution, and matter of instruction to me, attended with sweetness; which was, "Work
while it is day." Friends, this is our day, wherein we ought to be diligent and industrious. In the
light of the day we may see and understand how to work, and what to do, that at the conclusion
we may obtain from the Master of the day, who dwelleth in Light, the answer of well done; for
the night will come, wherein no man can work. We are favoured with liberty in this day, to
assemble together for worship unmolested; and my hearty desire is, that we may properly improve
this mercy; for the time some of us may come, before our day in this life is closed, wherein this
privilege may in some measure be taken from us. Something in me would be ready to say, The
Lord forbid that it should be the case; but by reason of the great declension which has overspread
the church, I hardly dare to expect any other. Oh my we therefore be careful to prize the mercy of
God, and endeavour to gain an inheritance in the light, that when night overtakes, and darkness as
to the outward, may hang over us, we may be favoured to withdraw into the sure hiding place,
and know a quiet habitation!