And one said to the man clothed in linen, which was on the waters of the river, How long shall it be to the end of these wonders?
There are many things at which we need not wonder. There are marvellous things in the kingdom of nature at which we continue to wonder. Man himself, as fearfully and wonderfully made, is as much a source of wonder to the greatest of modern philosophers as he was to the sages of Greece. But what are all the wonders of the material universe in comparison with the more sublime and complicated wonders of Divine grace and providence? These are especially the wonders that will never cease. No man can read the Bible without seeing a very large number of strange historical facts in it, and coincidences.
1. Wonders have an educational value. Coleridge says, "In wonder all philosophy began, in wonder it ends, and admiration fills up the interspace; but the first wonder is the offspring of ignorance, and the last is the parent of devotion. To a child everything is wonderful. Its sense of wonder is the spring of its desire to know. If it be possible to find a man, or a community, who has ceased to wonder, then you have a man — or a community — in a state of mental decay or mortification, for without the sense of wonder and the desire to know, mental, moral, and spiritual progress is impossible.
2. Wonders are God's voice in man's soul against materialism. They speak to us of things unseen and eternal. They rouse us to thought and action. Wonders for the mind and heart are as much needed as bread and water for our bodies.
3. Wonders are a kind of protest against rationalism. We are helped by reason in a thousand different ways. But there is something above and beyond reason. Reason has its limits as well as its laws.
4. Wonders are helps to faith. We may wonder at that chemistry in the field of nature by which God gives seed to the sower and bread to the eater, or how He makes the grass to grow for the cattle; but enough that we know whom we have believed, and can pray as children, "Give us this day our daily bread."
(J. Kerr Campbell.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And one said to the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river, How long shall it be to the end of these wonders?