Queen Victoria Day Canada & A Queen’s Salvation Question
The Monday before May 25th (usually the 3rd Monday in May) in Canada is a national holiday known as Queen Victoria's Birthday (or Victoria Day in Canada, historically it is a national day to recognize the public official birthday of the monarch). It is celebrated as the beginning of summer and people normally start planting gardens and opening summer resorts. Fireworks are a primary part of the holiday.
Queen Victoria established Canada as a nation and chose Ottawa as the capital city. The following story may help you think of your own relationship with God and will give you a little insight into the Queen's beliefs and the willingness to develop those beliefs for herself.
Can We Know that we have Sure Salvation?
Many people would like to “know”, with surety, that they have guaranteed salvation to be in Heaven, and yet other people believe that we cannot be sure at any particular time. Who is right? Are we to remain without assurance, without confidence, throughout our spiritual lives on this cursed planet earth?
Queen Victoria wanted to be sure, and asked her Chaplain after a worship service held in St. Paul's Cathedral in London, England, "Can one be absolutely sure in this life of eternal safety?" That Chaplain did not believe that there was a way for a person to be certain in this sinful life. His comments were published in the "Court News" and a modest evangelist named John Townsend read the article.
John, after reading the answer given to Queen Victoria by the Chaplain, and having considered the question, he began to think and pray about answering her himself.
This is the note he then later sent to the queen:
To her gracious Majesty, our beloved Queen Victoria, from one of her most humble subjects:
With trembling hands, but heartfelt love, and because I know that we can be absolutely sure now of our eternal life in the Home that Jesus went to prepare, may I ask your Most Gracious Majesty to read the following passages of Scripture: John 3:16; Romans 10:9, 10?
I sign myself, your servant for Jesus' sake, John Townsend.
John told others about his letter to the queen and gained many supporters who offered sincere prayers before God asking a blessing for the Queen's understanding. Approximately 2 weeks later John received a simple envelope which contained a letter that read:
To John Townsend: Your letter of recent date I received and in reply would state that I have carefully and prayerfully read the portions of Scripture referred to. I believe in the finished work of Christ for me, and trust by God's grace to meet you in that Home of which He said, "I go to prepare a place for you." (signed) Victoria Guelph
This Salvation is freely offered to everyone -- royalty or not!
During her reign Queen Victoria had a royal physician, Sir James Simpson of Edinburgh, who was a man of deep faith, and knew that "in Christ there was neither slave nor free, male nor female, for all are one and equally valued in the Lord" (see Galatians 3:28). Simpson was a pioneer in general anesthetic and using it for childbirth. When Simpson was dying in extreme pain, he commented: ‘When I think, it is of the words ‘Jesus only’ and really that is all that is needed, is it not?’
Queen Victoria died on January 22, 1901. Her reign had lasted nearly 64 years! She was laid to rest beside Prince Albert in the Frogmore Royal Mausoleum at Windsor. Above the Mausoleum door is inscribed the following words from Victoria, "farewell best friend, here at last I shall rest with thee, with thee in Christ I shall rise again."
As followers of God we know that we are saved by Jesus Christ's sacrifice; we also know from scripture the wonderful work being done now by our Saviour which will ensure sin is eradicated from His creation forevermore. This process will be completed soon through His Second Coming, the events during the Millennium, and by the execution of the Final Judgment.
I also believe you can know that you are ready for the Final Judgment in, and because of, His love; by loving God and then your Neighbour, by loving to keep His Commandments, yet not by any work or attempted merit that is of your own doing.
(originally published May 29, 2008 - various sources, compiled with added commentary by Scott MacDonald on www.hisgate.com)
God's Amazing Grace, page 331, paragraph 2 Chapter Title: What About Good Works, E.G. White
"Our acceptance with God is sure only through His beloved Son, and good works are but the result of the working of His sin-pardoning love. They are no credit to us, and we have nothing accorded to us for our good works by which we may claim a part in the salvation of our souls. Salvation is God's free gift to the believer, given to him for Christ's sake alone. The troubled soul may find peace through faith in Christ, and his peace will be in proportion to his faith and trust. He cannot present his good works as a plea for the salvation of his soul."
The Faith I Live By, page 112, paragraph 2 Chapter Title: God's Remedy For Sin, E.G. White
"The faith that is unto salvation is not a casual faith, it is not the mere consent of the intellect, it is belief rooted in the heart, that embraces Christ as a personal Saviour, assured that He can save unto the uttermost all that come unto God by Him. . . ."