Monday, December 18, 2017

Dowie: Angels Warn Us

Dowie: Angels Warning


On the morning of September 1, 1886, I was asleep in my bed, and at a very early hour, just at the dawn of the morning, I was awakened. Now that is a continual thing with me to be awakened at dawn. No matter when I go to bed, I will always wake when it is sunrise, even although I go to sleep again, should I not want to rise. 

I had been very profoundly asleep, and everything was quiet around. Suddenly I was out of the body. That is no unusual experience. But suddenly I saw the bed on which I was lying.”I saw on it a human form. It was a dead body. I lifted the sheet and saw my own face” dead. 

Immediately, I came to consciousness, and found myself lying in the bed; it was only a vision. I chided myself for having overworked, and said: “Now you see what strange
fancies will come to a man that overworks.” And I asked God to forgive me for I had overworked. I looked at my watch, and went to sleep again, very soundly. 

Presently, I was again out of the body. I again saw the bed, and the white sheet covering the form. I lifted the sheet; it was my own face. I said, “Now, there is another trick of my mind, and this is all nonsense.” I chided myself again and went to sleep. I had evidently slept, very deeply, because it was much later when I awoke for the second time. I again looked at my watch and found that I had been sleeping for over an hour. Then a third time, I saw the vision, lifted the sheet, and again saw my own face. I knew then that I was going to be killed, or die suddenly, or that my life was in danger. 

I took a bath, then went to the study, wrote out the incident, and put it into my bureau in case anything happened. I also wrote a short will; during the day I had it witnessed, and put it with a statement concerning my vision in case anything happened. 

During the morning a gentleman, who was a good Christian preacher, came to me and said: “I had a vision last night that you had been killed, Doctor. I want you to take care of yourself and to insure your life.” He told me about a vision, and it was different than mine, but a vision in which he dreamed my body was dreadfully mangled. Then I thought, God has sent this additional confirmation. I told him the story of my vision, and I told my wife. 

That night, I delivered a long discourse and had a great many signatures to the Christian Temperance pledge. A great many persons gave up drink that night, and I had to meet with candidates afterwards. There were many going to join the church that month, and I was to see a group of them that night. The church meeting was to be on Thursday; this was Tuesday. Suddenly I saw the candidates gather, some twenty or thirty of them, I do not know exactly how many. I went to my door and said to them: “Would you be able to come night, Wednesday, just as well?” They replied that it would be quite convenient. So I said good night to them and went away. 

I took the church secretary and went to my room. It was behind the tabernacle, and the window looked upon a back lane. I went down, and took my valise, took out my papers, and began to dictate to my secretary. Meanwhile, all the lights had been put out in the large tabernacle. 

As I sat there dictating to the secretary, I was stopped. I looked at him”. “Did you hear anything, George?” “No.” “Then I did.” I heard a voice say, “Rise, Go!” and I thought it was my imagination playing a trick on me. I had been trying to forget the vision of the morning, thinking it might not be of God. Nothing happened during the day, and I was in very good health. Everything was very still. I went on with my dictation, and had uttered the first word, when in tones most impressive and acute the voice came: “Rise! Go!” 

I turned to my secretary and asked, “Did you hear a voice?” He looked at me with a smile. “No, why?” he asked. “Then it is all right. I thought I heard a voice.” I started again, and had only gotten a word out, when it was just like thunder in my ears. “Rise! Go!” 

It was imperative. I said to my secretary, “Go up to the meter, George, turn out the gas, and we will finish this work at home. I will obey that heavenly voice.” 

I would not stay any longer. I quietly put the things in my valise. When he came back, he helped me on with my overcoat. It was a dark winter night, not a star to be seen in the sky, and there had been some rain. I let myself out the back way, and went to my home, about six or seven minutes walk away. 

Our house was a stone house, and I was in an inner room. All had gone to bed, and I was with my secretary dictating, when I thought I heard a thud, a strange thud, outside, as if there were an explosion. I asked, “George, did you hear a noise?” He said, “What do you mean?” I told him that I thought I had heard a noise like an explosion. 

“Why,” he said, “I do not think there was any such thing. I did hear a little noise, but I thought it must be a door shutting.” 

But a thud had happened. Dynamite bad been placed underneath my feet; it had been attached to a fuse up the back lane, and it exploded in the tabernacle within about ten minutes after I had left. It had been placed upon an iron plate underneath my desk. They had known exactly where I would be sitting. The fuse burnt slowly, otherwise I should have been killed. But that voice was imperative, and I had gotten away in time. That whole part of town had awakened, and people ran out to see what had happened. The police thought the tabernacle was being set on fire, but there was no sign of fire. It was a very dark night and the people did not know where the explosion had been. 

There was no flame; nothing had caught fire, and everything settled down. In the morning I came somewhat early, and tried to get in at the back gate. I saw, to my astonishment, that the side of my room was blown out, and I found that pieces of weatherboards had been driven into the fence, and right through it. I could not open the gate which was broken off its hinges. I went around to the front door, opened it, passed through the tabernacle, and could not open any of the doors of my room, though there were three doors to it. 

At last I pushed violently, and the door fell in. It was off its hinges. Then I saw the scene of confusion—all my chairs broken, and where I sat would have been the place of my murder; for there was a great big hole, and the flooring boards had been broken up into countless splinters. 

Those words, “Rise! Go!” were the words of an angel. I have not the slightest doubt in the world about it. 

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