Queen Victoria's Testimony to the Gospel of Jesus Christ
Updated: Sep 9, 2022
The annual public holiday of Victoria Day in Canada, held on the last Monday preceding May 25, which is today (the 23rd day of May), is a celebration in honour of Queen Victoria, the great-great-grandmother of Queen Elizabeth II. At least that’s how it started out and rightfully should have continued to be celebrated, but maybe Victoria’s religious beliefs were to much for Canada, so they kept the name but changed the event to a celebration of Canada's sovereignty. It is informally considered to be the beginning of the summer season here in Canada.
A young girl by the name of Katura desired a certain doll and saved up enough money over a considerable period of time. When the time came that she had enough to pay for it, she wandered over to the local wood carvers shop. After purchasing her hearts joy and on the stroll home, she happens upon a very poor man, a beggar. She desired to help the starving man, but she had no more money. “I am so sorry. I have no money, no food, or I would surely help thee” she says to him. He responded, “Thank you my lady” and shuffled on his way. “Stay” cried the little owner of the doll. There was a quiver in her voice and moisture in her pretty blue eyes. “Please, wait” she spoke softly. So the beggar did. This little girl knew what she had to do. She quickly returned to the wood shop and asked, “Please sir may I exchange my doll for the shillings I paid for her?” Are you not satisfied with the new doll my child,” the owner inquired. “Oh yes sir, but there is someone who needs these shillings more than I need this lovely doll.” She returned to the starving man and placed the whole of her savings into his hands. He was dumbstruck! Never before had such bounty been reigned upon him! The object of her mercy whispered to her in an overwhelming thankful tone: “If the Almighty made you a queen, it would not be more than your goodness deserves.” As the little girl embraced the stranger with affection, he again whispered: “Indeed, my child, may Almighty God some day make you a queen.” Several years later, Katura was crowned England’s Queen, the youngest ever in the history of the monarch. Her name, as you probably guessed already…Queen Victoria. (adapted from “The Beggars Blessing,” retold by Mark Hanby).
Her influence so great as Queen, her reign of 63 years and seven months was the start of what became known as the Victorian era (1838-1901). Her reign was also longer than any previous British monarch, a record that stood until September 9th 2015, when it was broken by her great-great-granddaughter, Queen Elizabeth II (this year, 2022, she celebtrates her jubliee: 70 years as Queen). The Victorian era was a period of industrial, political, scientific, and military change within the United Kingdom, and was marked by a great expansion of the British Empire. You could say God greatly blessed that nation due to this Queen’s love for her Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
Though I do not know the precise date of her conversion to Christ, I believe it occurred around the time of the following correspondence.
After hearing a sermon delivered while attending a service in St. Paul’s Cathedral, Queen Victoria asked her Chaplain if “one could be absolutely sure in this life of eternal safety.” His sad answer was that he knew of no way that one could be absolutely sure.
This was published in the Court News and fell under the eye of a humble minister of the Gospel, John Townsend, an intimate friend of George Mueller. After reading of Queen Victoria’s question and the answer she received, Townsend thought and prayed much about the matter, then sent the following note to the Queen:
“To her gracious Majesty, our beloved Queen Victoria, from one of her most humble subjects:
With trembling hands, but heart-filled 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?
These passages prove there is full assurance of salvation by faith in our Lord Jesus Christ for those who believe and accept His finished work.
I sign myself, your servant for Jesus’ sake, John Townsend.”
John Townsend was not alone in praying about his letter to the Queen. He took others into his confidence, and much prayer from many hearts went up to God. In about a fortnight he received correspondence, containing the following letter:
“To John Townsend:
Your letter of recent date 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”
Whether one is an earthly monarch or an inconspicuous, unknown person, the way of salvation and of eternal life is the same.
“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” (Jn 3:16)
“If thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” (Rom 10:9-10)
These passages, among many others, pledge us by His Word that one who by repentant faith receives Jesus Christ by believing in Him and in His gospel, surrendering to Him as Lord has eternal life now. The Apostle John tells us that His Gospel was written “that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through His Name.” (Jn 20:31).
Salvation by faith in Christ is repeatedly declared in the Scriptures to be the present possession not merely future, of those who believe, and it can never, ever be lost (read here also: Biblical Reasoning Why Salvation Can Never Be Lost). Thus the Lord said,
“Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth My Word, and believeth on Him that sent Me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.” (Jn 5:24).
Queen Victoria believed that, but very many do not, even many among those who profess to be Christian. They have a profession but they remain unsaved and unregenerate (Matt 7:21-23; Jn 2:23-25; Ac 8:13-24; 2 Jn 1:9-11; 3 Jn 1:9-11; Rev 3:14-17; etc). There is an eternal difference between Saving Faith and Non-Saving Faith.
Queen Victoria was very definite and confident in her confession of faith. When a heathen African prince came to Great Britain and was presented to her, he inquired,
“Your Majesty, to what do you attribute the great prosperity of the British Empire?”
Victoria handed him a Bible and simply said,
The heathen price carried the Bible back to his people and told them that it was on this “Book” that the prosperity of Great Britain was based.
Toward the end of her life Queen Victoria publicly stated,
“I am a firm believer in the second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ. I have sometimes thought He has permitted me to reign so long that perhaps I will never lay down my crown until I lay it down at His feet, when He comes again.”
What a beautiful expression of her subjection and submission to the Lord Jesus Christ, in like manner of the King of Nineveh (Jo 3:6-9). But such subjection didn’t start at some point in her Christian life but when she was converted to Christ, for Salvation Requires Surrendering to Jesus Christ as Lord. It was at that moment of repentant faith that she surrendered her life and will to Jesus Christ as her Lord and Saviour and believed in the merits of His perfect sacrifice for her sins.
Each summer Victoria was accustomed to go to Balmoral, a lovely place in Scotland. She would visit the Highland women living in the little cottages in the hills around. She became acquainted with all of them and went from one to another to chat with them. Of course, they were delighted that the Queen would take such notice of them. Finally, as she was returning to London, she came to bid one old cottager goodbye. The old lady said,
“Well, your Majesty, I may never see you on earth again. May I ask your gracious Majesty a question?”
“Yes, as many as you like.”
“Well,” she said, “will your Majesty meet me in heaven?”
The Queen replied,
“Yes—through the all-availing blood of Jesus!”
What a glorious testimony of the faith of Queen Victoria in the shed blood of Jesus Christ to get her to heaven!
Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have leaders of our nations today with such a Biblical testimony!
She well understood the wonderful truth of 1 Pet 1:18-19,
“Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:”
How is it with you? Have you been born again? Has the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ cleansed and washed you from your sins? The call of Christ is loud and clear:
“Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool. If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land: But if ye refuse and rebel, ye shall be devoured with the sword: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it.” (Is 1:18-10)
Please read here on how you can be Saved and Have Eternal Life through the Precious Blood of Jesus Christ
Portions adapted from:
Bible Truth Publishers (https://bibletruthpublishers.com/gospel-tract-can-we-be-sure-full-color-gospel-tract-assurance/pd5050)
Expository Notes on the Prophet Isaiah by H.A. Ironside (Loizeaux Brothers, Nepture, New Jersey, 1952, pp. 281-282).