The announcement that 2,000 out of a total of 10,000 Prebyterian churches in this country are without pastors was made by the Rev. Charles Little, Moderator of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in the United States.

Dr. Little has been in Philadelphia attending a meeting of the General Assembly's Commissions on Christian Work in the Witherspoon Building. About fifteen other prominent Presbyterians from different parts of the country attended the meeting also and will recommend to the next General Assembly a plan to supply the vacant pulpits.


"We are losing all our secrets in this shabby age," an architect said. "If we keep on the time will come when we'll be able to do nothing well.

"Take, for instance, steel. We claim to make good steel, yet the blades the saracens turned out hundreds of years ago would cut one of our own blades in two like butter.

"Take ink. Our modern ink fades in five or ten years to rust color, yet the ink of mediaeval manuscripts is as black and bright today as it was 700 years ago.

Take dyes. The beautiful blues and reds and greens of antique oriental rugs have all been lost, while in Egyptian tombs we find fabrics dyed thousands of years ago that remain today brighter and purer in hue than any of our modern fabrics.

"Take my specialty, buildings. We can't build as the ancients did. The secret of their mortar and cement is lost to us. Their mortar and cement were actually harder and more durable than the stones they bound together, whereas ours-horrors!" New York Press


Prof. Richard Gottheil, of Columbia University, the Director of the American School of Archaeology in Jerusalem, believes that the time will soon come when Palestine will be in fact what the Hebrew Scriptures say it was at one time- "a land flowing with milk and honey." The professor admits that changes will have to come before the ideal is realized, but he believes that the changes will come.

When a friend suggested that there would have to be a change in the soil, as well as in the government, he replied that appearances were often deceitful, in Turkey as well as America, and that what appeared to be rock on the hillsides of Judea was really a fertilizer in rock form. Prof. Gottheil is a truthful man, but a truthful man is sometimes called upon to explain statements which seem contrary to facts, and this is the explanation he made: "The soil of Palestine is peculiar. It is remarkably fertile, as the primitive methods of cultivation show. If so much can grow as does grow with the mere scratching which the ground receives, how much might be produced if western methods were employed I have seen trees growing where there was absolutely no dirt visible, but in some way the roots had reached the soil and they had obtained a foothold, which enables them to grow and bear fruit.


"But what is more remarkable still is the fact that there is in the rocks which one sees on these hillsides, chemical properties which correspond with those ingredients in the best fertilizers, and these rocks decompose from time to time, so that what seems so forbidding from an agricultural point of view is really going back into the soil as manure. There is an institution in Jerusalem, founded to give work to poor Hebrews, whose manager actually pounds up the soil, not waiting for it to decompose, and he produces very fine crops as a result of this mixture.

Several cases might be cited where hillsides may be made to bear, not exactly forests, but a sufficient number of trees to prove my contention that a great future awaits this country, when conditions now prevalent are changed; and they will be changed; a new spirit is in the air, and in the government as well."


This article is the same material as Bible Students Monthly, Volume 3, No. 11, entitled, "A Joyful Message for the Sin-Sick."


This article is the same material as Bible Students Monthly, Volume 3, No. 11, entitled, "God In the Home."


Sir John Jackson has obtained the contract for the construction of the first dam in the irrigation works designed by Sir William Willcox for the Turkish Government, with the object of again making an Eden of Mesopotamia.

Sir William Willcox, who has been engaged in surveying the land between the Tigris and the Euphrates, in 1908 predicted that this vast territory, now an arid waste infested by swamps, but showing traces of ancient irrigation canals, would again blossom as the rose, provided that works, of which this dam is the first, be carried out.


It is quite in line with the commercial spirit of the age to have Billy Sunday, the evangelist, estimate the cost of saving souls in various cities. In Atlanta, he says, it requires an outlay of only $75 to rescue a soul; in New York city, $545; in Boston, $ 450; in Denver, $425; in Chicago, $395; in New Orleans, $78, and in Indianapolis $620.

While it would be interesting to know how the evangelist reached his interesting results, it would not be easy to accept them even with an itemized account at hand. It is not conceivable that it costs more to save a soul in Indianapolis than in New York.

Moreover, the expenditures of Mr. Sunday cannot be taken as a criterion of the price of saving souls. His hotel bills may be higher than those of other so-called soul-savers. As a baseball player, which was his former occupation, he may have contracted the habit of staying at the best hotels.

Soul-saving is scarcely a commercial business. Evangelists, however, find it a much more profitable business than do the average preachers in home churches.

Many evangelists have become rich. Those who use dramatic methods make more money than the conservative ones. Exchange


How the promise of peace grows! Even Japan is ready for a peace pact, and has taken the initiative toward reaching a general arbitration treaty with the United States. No formal proposition has yet been made, but through diplomatic channels the Japanese government has made it known that it is willing to submit proposals if invited. This is progress for the peace campaign, surely. Japan has been popularly looked upon as the most pugnacious nation of the Orient, and of the world-spoiling for a fight and swelling with military ambition. Now, we are told, the only obstacle to the initiation of negotiations between the United States and Japan for a general arbitration tread is that "the Japanese government hesitates to make the first advances because it has no official intimation that such a movement would be welcome in the United States." All doubt on that point should be speedily removed, Col. Roosevelt to the contrary notwithstanding.

After the foregoing was written, but before it was put in type, came the extraordinary information from Washington that "the German government has sent a most sympathetic answer to the United States government's inquiry as to whether Germany had any interest in a general arbitration treaty. The answer requests the Washington government to communicate the full details of the proposed treaties with Great Britain and France and promises that Germany will subject them to most careful and friendly scrutiny with a view to declaring later how far the proposals appear acceptable." Germany, with her war-lord Emperor, has been supposed least favorable of all the nations of Europe to the general arbitration movement. Should that nation give the matter favorable consideration, the permanent peace of the world would surely be in sight. Michigan Christian Advocate



This article can be found in its entirety in the Newspaper Sermon, entitled, "The Creator Misunderstood."


"The real cause of the crime that is being committed today is that 95 per cent of the people don't care what harm comes to the other fellow so long as it doesn't happen to them.

"If a change does not take place in the existing conditions, which will stop the rapid increase in the number of unemployed. I predict with all sincerity, that by 1915 there will be such a revolution as will take the millionaire, afraid to step outside his home for fear of having his brains blown out by the starving man who awaits him." Dr. George W. Gallon, in Boston [Mass.] Post


It is announced that one or more conferences of the Methodist Church of Canada have voted favorably upon the proposed union of Methodist, Presbyterian and Congregational churches in the country. Several branches of these and other denominations in the United States have decided to withdraw from fields already occupied by another branch, uniting the congregations, and also have agreed not to enter a field in competition with another church unless a second church is needed. Local churchmen regard these decisions as pointing toward a more general church union in the future.


"Church authorities in Berlin are in consternation at what they regard as the deplorable shrinkage in the Sunday collections throughout the city. Congregations remain unresponsive and callous to the most fervid appeals for missionary work, whether at home or abroad, and other branches of home work such as church extension are treated with the same indifference.

It often happens that even in the richest and most fashionable districts special offertories do not exceed $25, and not a few congregations are content to contribute as many shillings.

"In view of these facts a large section of the population of Berlin are protesting against the building of new churches when those already existing are not half full, and when so many citizens show, by their absence and lack of participation, how indifferent they are to the claims of the national church on their attention." Exchange


Concerning a peculiar tree, which grows in Peru and which becomes an indispensable aid to the populace and to agriculture in days of drought, a contributor to the "Espana Moderna" furnishes some interesting information: "The Peruvian Indians call it 'Tamaicaspi, 'which signifies Raintree. It is a thick tree, exceptionally rich in foliage whose leaves possess the unusual faculty of absorbing the watery vapors of the atmosphere and of passing it on to the earth in the form of raindrops.

"The ground under the main part of the foliage is almost continually swampy from large quantities of water and what seems specially striking is that right in the dry season of the year the secretions of the tree are the greatest. Then whole pools form around about the tree, little rivulets flow in the vicinity and saturate the parched earth with productive moisture.

"If the natives would utilize the properties of the raintree in a rational way they could without much difficulty irrigate and cultivate entire districts, which during the hot season lie dry and almost entirely unproductive. It has been figured out that a single one of these trees furnishes on an average about nine gallons of water every twenty-four hours. Ten thousand of these trees could easily be planted on one square mile at a distance of eighteen yards apart. The entire district would thus get 85,000 gallons of water; and even admitting that a large part of it immediately soaks into the earth or evaporates there would still remain 30,000 gallons for the benefit of the parched ground. The raintree is at the same time very unit [HG526] pretentious and thrives even upon unfavorable soil, grows unusually fast and survives the greatest fluctuations of temperature unhurt."

That this wonderful tree secretes such large quantities of water might be very significant for the Restitution and cultivation of the desert lands.


This article was republished in the Overland Monthly, pages OM183-OM186, entitled, "Paradise Better than Honolulu."


This article is the same material as The Everlasting Gospel, Volume 1, No. 2, entitled, "Darwinism Is Dying."


This article can be found In its entirety in the Newspaper Sermons, entitled, "Divine Omniscience and Almighty Power."


This article was republished In R4780-March 1, 1911, entitled, "The Wise Choice."


While we weep with the survivors of the Titanic disaster, let us thank God that a better understanding of the Bible enables us to sorrow, not hopelessly. Not long ago, misguided by our creeds of the Dark Ages, we would have asked, Were any of the 1,600 who perished saints? And assured that very few of them would have claimed to be saints, we would have concluded that all the remainder plunged down to a Catholic Purgatory of terror, or worse, to a Protestant hell of eternal torture.

Even the tales of their great gallantry and heroism would not have altered the decision, which would have hung on the question. Did they confess Jesus in word and deed? we would have asked. Were they church members? This is the same argument used respecting the 90,000 heathen who die every day in the year, "going down into Christless graves," the "London Missionary Society" truly says, but means and is understood to mean, into Christless eternal torturel Now, how different! Now we see that a faithful, elect Church is being selected during this Age; that in the next Age they with Jesus may assist, bless, uplift all [HG527] the non-elect to an earthly salvation to human perfection, in the new Paradise-earth-which Messiah's Kingdom will usher in. Thus, only the wilfully wicked will ever be annihilated, while all those who then shall prove themselves to be willing and obedient shall have the Divine favor and everlasting life. God's power is Infinite, so is His Love, His mercy, His goodness!


From a letter recently received we quote the following interesting extract: "Nowhere were we more surprised than in the Philippines. At Manila, a city of 360, 000, we saw many evidences of progress. Our hearts burned with patriotic flame as we saw the work in progress, and perceived that the Government of the United States has been dealing so wisely and generously with the Filipinos-as an elder brother with a younger.

"For centuries these islands were under the control of Spain. With the money brought to them by the poor people, the representatives of the Catholic Church had not only lived in luxury, but had amassed millions of wealth. We were told that they now hold title to 95 per cent of the buildings in the walled city of Manila. One of these buildings they rent to the United States for $400 a month.

"Gradually the people are becoming awakened and enlightened. They are showing a great hunger for education. The schools are crowded. Four hundred new school buildings are projected. The 800 American school teachers whom the Government brought here are now supplanted by 6,000 native school teachers.

"The work of civilization is progressing in an unprecedented manner. How happy this contrast with the condition of the colonies of other nations, which seem to be run on the exploit system-for the enrichment of the possessing governments and private individuals whom they favor.

"Our American school teachers here, as at home, are not permitted to give any religious instructions. In other words, the work of the Government is merely a civilizing one, but the work accomplished in this respect seems not very different from that being accomplished by the various missionary enterprises of the Orient-for they all confess that to put religion prominently before the pupils would be to destroy influence and empty the schools.

"On the whole, it seems to us that our Government is doing the most successful missionary work to be found anywhere. We were much surprised and pleased at the personnel of the officers and soldiers stationed at Manila, whom we met. We would have been glad to have found them saintly Christians, but, on the other hand, we rejoice that we did find them broad-minded gentlemen, sympathetic with the civilizing work with which they are associated. To our surprise, we found that all this vast enterprise is being conducted along business lines-that the Filipinos themselves are bearing the expense-all expenses except those of the Army and Navy.

"It was proposed recently to erect a Y. M. C. A. building for the Filipinos, and a subscription paper was started. The Catholic Archbishop heard of it, and denounced it freely in the newspapers and by circular letters sent about. But instead of this stopping the subscriptions, it had the reverse effect. The proposed $80,000 was oversubscribed-$ 100,000 was raised. The Archbishop now threatens that he will build a competitive institution, and the answer of the people (Catholics) is that they hope he will do so."


Evidences aside from the Bible examined in the light of reason This article, printed below, was excerpted from The Divine Plan of the Ages, Chapter 2, pages A29-A35.

Even from the standpoint of the skeptic, a reasonable and candid search into the unknown, by the light of what is known, will guide the unbiased, intelligent reasoner in the direction of the Truth. Yet it is evident that without a direct revelation of the Plans and purposes of God, men could only approximate the Truth, and arrive at indefinite conclusions. But let us for the moment lay aside the Bible and look at things from the standpoint of reason alone. [HG528] He who can look into the sky with a telescope, or even with his natural eye alone, and see there the immensity of creation, its symmetry, beauty, order, harmony and diversity, and yet doubt that the Creator of these is vastly his superior both in wisdom and power, or who can suppose for a moment that such order came by chance, without a Creator, has so far lost or ignored the faculty of reason as to be properly considered what the Bible terms him, a fool (one who ignores or lacks reason); "The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God." However it happened, at least that much of the Bible is true, as every reasonable mind must conclude; for it is a self-evident truth that effects must be produced by competent causes.

Every plant and every flower, even, speaks volumes of testimony on this subject.

Intricate in construction, exquisitely beautiful in form and texture, each speaks of a wisdom and skill above the human. How shortsighted the absurdity which boasts of human skill and ingenuity, and attributes to mere chance the regularity, uniformity and harmony of nature; which acknowledges the laws of nature, while denying that nature has an intelligent Lawgiver.


Some who deny the existence of an intelligent Creator claim that nature is the only God, and that from nature all forms of animal and vegetable development proceeded without the ordering of intelligence, but governed, they say, by "the law of the survival of the fittest" in a process of evolution.

This theory lacks proof, for all about us we see that the various creatures are of fixed natures which do not evolve to higher natures; and though those who hold to this theory have made repeated endeavors, they have never succeeded either in blending different species or in producing a new, fixed variety. No instance is known where one kind has changed to another kind.*

* For the benefit of some readers we remark that changes such as the transformation of caterpillars into butterflies are not changes of nature; the caterpillar is but the larva hatched from the butterfly's egg.

Though there are fish that can use their fins for a moment as wings, and fly out of the water, and frogs that can sing, they have never been known to change into birds; and though there are among brutes some which bear a slight resemblance to men, the evidence is wholly lacking that man was evolved from such creatures.

On the contrary, investigations prove that though different varieties of the same species may be produced, it is impossible to blend the various species, or for one to evolve from another. For the same reason the donkey and the horse, though resembling each other, cannot be claimed as related, for it is well known that their offspring is imperfect and cannot propagate their species.

Surely if unintelligent nature were the creator or evolver she would continue the process, and there would be no such thing as fixed species, since without intelligence nothing would arrive at fixed conditions. Evolution would be a fact today, and we would see about us fish becoming birds and monkeys becoming men. This theory we conclude to be as contrary to human reason as to the Bible, when it claims that intelligent beings were created by a power lacking intelligence.


One theory regarding the creation (excepting man) by a process of evolution, to which we see no serious objection, we briefly state as follows: it assumes that the various species of the present are fixed and unchangeable so far as nature or kind is concerned, and though present natures may be developed to a much higher standard, even to perfection, these species or natures will forever be the same.

This theory further assumes that none of these fixed species were originally created so, but that in the remote past they were developed from the earth, and by gradual processes of evolution from one form to another. These evolutions, under Divinely established laws, in which changes of food and climate played an important part, may have continued until the fixed species, as at present seen, were established, beyond which change is impossible, the ultimate purpose of the Creator in this respect, to all appearance, having been reached.

Though each of the various families of plants and animals is capable of improvement or of degradation, none of them is susceptible of change into, nor can they be produced from other families or kinds. Though each of these may attain to the perfection of its own fixed nature, the Creator's design as to nature having been attained, further change in this respect is impossible.

It is claimed that the original plants and animals, from which present fixed varieties came, became extinct before the creation of man. Skeletons and fossils of animals and plants which do not now exist, found deep below the earth's surface, favor this theory. This view neither ignores nor rejects the Bible teaching that man was a direct and perfect creation, made in the mental and moral image of his Maker, and not a development by a process of evolution, probably common to the remainder of creation. This view would in no sense invalidate, but would support, [HG529] the Bible's claim, that nature as it is today teaches that an Intelligent Being ordered it, and was its first cause. Let human reason do her best to trace known facts to reasonable and competent causes, giving due credit to nature's laws in every case; but back of all the intricate machinery of nature is the hand of its great Author, the intelligent, omnipotent God.

We claim, then, that the existence of an Intelligent Creator is a clearly demonstrated truth, the proof of which lies all around us; yea, and within us, for we are His workmanship, whose every power of mind and body speaks of a marvelous skill beyond our comprehension. And He is also the Designer and Creator of what we term nature. We claim that He ordered and established the laws of nature, the beauty and harmony of whose operation we see and admire.

This One whose wisdom planned and whose power upholds and guides the Universe, whose wisdom and power so immeasurably transcend our own, we instinctively worship and adore.

To realize the existence of this Mighty God is but to dread His Omnipotent strength, unless we can see Him possessed of benevolence and goodness corresponding to His power. Of this fact we are also fully assured by the same evidence which proves His existence, power and wisdom. Not only are we forced to the conclusion that there is a God, and that His power and wisdom are immeasurably beyond our own, but we are forced by reason to the conclusion that the grandest thing created is not superior to its Creator; hence we must conclude that the greatest manifestation of benevolence and justice among men is inferior in scope to that of the Creator, even as man's wisdom and power are inferior to His. And thus we have before our mental vision the character and attributes of the great Creator. He is wise, just, loving and powerful; and the scope of His attributes is, of necessity immeasurably wider than that of His grandest creation.


But further; having reached this reasonable conclusion relative to the existence and character of our Creator, let us inquire, What should we expect of such a Being? The answer comes, that the possession of such attributes reasonably argues their exercise, their use. God's power must be used, and that in harmony with His own nature-wisely, justly and benevolently. Whatever may be the means to that end, whatever may be the operation of God's power, the final outcome must be consistent with His nature and character, and every step must be approved of His infinite wisdom.

What could be more reasonable than such exercise of power as we see manifested in the creation of countless worlds about us, and in the wonderful variety of earth?

What could be more reasonable than the creation of man, endowed with reason and judgment, capable of appreciating his Creator's works, and judging of His skill-of His wisdom, Justice, Power and Love? All this is reasonable, and all in perfect accord with facts known to us.

And now comes our final proposition! Is it not reasonable to suppose that such an infinitely wise and good being, having made a creature capable of appreciating Himself and His Plan, would be moved by His Love and Justice to supply the wants of that creature's nature, by giving him some revelation? Would it not be a reasonable supposition that God would supply to man information concerning the object of his existence, and His plans for his future. On the contrary, we ask, would it not be unreasonable to suppose that such a Creator would make such a creature as man, endow him with power of reason reaching out into the future, and yet make no revelation of His plans to meet those longings? Such a course would be unreasonable, because contrary to the character which we reasonably attribute to God; contrary to the proper course of a being controlled by Justice and Love.


We may reason that in creating man, had Divine Wisdom decided it inexpedient to grant him a knowledge of his future destiny, and his share in his Creator's plans, then surely Divine Justice, as well as Divine Love, would have insisted that the being should be so limited in his capacity that he would not continually be tormented and perplexed with doubts, and fears, and ignorance; and as a consequence Divine Power would have been used under those limitations. The fact, then, that man has capacity for appreciating a revelation of the Divine Plan, taken in connection with the conceded character of his Creator, is an abundant reason for expecting that God would grant such a revelation, in such time and manner as His Wisdom approved.

So, then, in view of these considerations, even if we were ignorant of the Bible, reason would lead us to expect and to be on the lookout for some such revelation as the Bible claims to be. And furthermore, noting the order and harmony of the general creation, as in grand procession the spheres and systems keep [HG530] time and place, we cannot but conclude that the minor irregularities, such as earthquakes, cyclones, etc., are but indications that the working together of the various elements in this world is not at present perfect. An assurance that all will ultimately be perfect and harmonious on earth as in the heavens with some explanation why it is not so at present, are requests which are not unreasonable for reasoning men to ask, nor for the Creator, whose Wisdom, Power and Benevolence are demonstrated to answer. Hence we should expect the revelation sought to include such an assurance and such an explanation.


Having established the reasonableness of expecting a revelation of God's will and Plan concerning our race we will examine in the next chapter the general character of the Bible, which claims to be just such a revelation. And if it presents the character of God in perfect harmony with what reason, as above considered, dictates, we should conclude that it thus proves itself to be the needed and reasonably expected revelation from God, and should then accept its testimony as such. If of God, its teachings, when fully appreciated, will accord with His character, which reason assures us is perfect in Wisdom, Justice, Love and Power.

"Ye curious minds, who roam abroad, And trace creation's wonders o'er, Confess the footsteps of your God, And bow before Him, and adore.

"The heavens declare Thy glory, Lord; In every star Thy wisdom shines; But when our eyes behold Thy Word, We read Thy name in fairer lines."


Viewed in the Light of Reason This article, printed below, was excerpted from The Divine Plan of the Ages, Chapter 3, pages A37-A56.

The Bible is the torch of civilization and liberty. Its influence for good in society has been recognized by the greatest statesmen, even though they for the most part have looked at it through the various glasses of conflicting creeds, which, while upholding the Bible, grievously misrepresent its teachings. The grand old Book is unintentionally but woefully misrepresented by its friends, many of whom would lay down life on its behalf; and yet they do it more vital injury than its foes, by claiming its support to their long-revered misconceptions of its Truth, received through the traditions of their fathers. Would that such would awake, re-examine their oracle, and put to confusion its enemies by disarming them of their weapons!

Since the light of nature leads us to expect a fuller revelation of God than that which nature supplies, the reasonable, thinking mind will be prepared to examine the claims of anything purporting to be a Divine revelation, which bears a reasonable surface evidence of the truthfulness of such claims. The Bible claims to be such a revelation from God, and it does come to us with sufficient surface evidence as to the probable correctness of its claims, and gives us a reasonable hope that closer investigation will disclose more complete and positive evidence that it is indeed the Word of God.


The Bible is the oldest book in existence; it has outlived the storms of thirty centuries. Men have endeavored by every means possible to banish it from the face of the earth; they have hidden it, buried it, made it a crime punishable with death to have it in possession, and the most bitter and relentless persecutions have been waged against those who had faith in it; but still the Book lives. Today, while many of its foes slumber in death, and hundreds of volumes written to discredit it and to overthrow its influences are long since forgotten, the Bible has found its way into every nation and language of earth, over two hundred different translations of it having been made. The fact that this Book has survived so many centuries notwithstanding such unparalleled efforts to banish and destroy it, is at least strong circumstantial evidence that the great Being whom it claims as its Author has also been its Preserver.

It is also true that the moral influence of the Bible is uniformly good. Those who become careful students of its pages are invariably elevated to a purer life. Other writings upon religion and the various sciences have done good and have ennobled and blessed mankind, to some extent; but all other books combined [HG531] have failed to bring the joy, peace and blessing to the groaning creation that the Bible has brought to both the rich and the poor, to the learned and the unlearned. The Bible is not a book to be read merely; it is a book to be studied with care and thought; for God's thoughts are higher than our thoughts, and His ways than our ways. And if we would comprehend the Plan and thoughts of the infinite God, we must bend all our energies to that important work. The richest treasures of truth do not always lie on the surface.

This Book throughout constantly points and refers to one prominent character, Jesus of Nazareth, who, it claims, was the Son of God. From the beginning to end His name, and office, and work are made prominent. That a man called Jesus of Nazareth lived, and was somewhat noted, about the time indicated by the writers of the Bible, is a fact of history outside the Bible, and it is variously and fully corroborated. That this Jesus was crucified because He had rendered Himself offensive to the Jews and their priesthood is a further fact established by history outside the evidence furnished by the New Testament writers. The writers of the New Testament (except Paul and Luke) were the personal acquaintances and disciples of Jesus of Nazareth, whose doctrines their writings set forth.


The existence of any book implies motive on the part of the writer. We therefore inquire, What motives could have inspired these men to espouse the cause of this person? He was condemned to death and crucified as a malefactor by the Jews, the most religious among them assenting to and demanding His death, as one unfit to live. And in espousing His cause, and promulgating His doctrines, these men braved contempt, deprivation and bitter persecution, risked life itself, and in some cases even suffered martyrdom.

Admitting that while He lived Jesus was a remarkable person, in both His life and His teaching, what motive could there have been for any to espouse His cause after He was dead?-especially when His death was so ignominious? And if we suppose that these writers invented their narratives, and that Jesus was their imaginary or ideal hero, how absurd it would be to suppose that sane men, after claiming that He was the Son of God, that He had been begotten in a supernatural way, had supernatural powers by which He had healed lepers, restored sight to those born blind, caused the deaf to hear, and even awakened the dead-how very absurd to suppose that they would wind up the story of such a character by stating that a little band of His enemies executed Him as a felon, while all His friends and disciples, and among them the writers themselves, forsook Him and fled in the trying moment!

The fact that profane history does not agree in some respects with these writers should not lead us to regard their records as untrue. Those who do thus conclude should assign and prove some motive on the part of these writers for making false statements. What motives could have prompted them? Could they reasonably have hoped thereby for fortune, or fame, or power, or any earthly advantage? The poverty of Jesus' friends, and the unpopularity of their hero Himself with the great religionists of Judea, contradict such a thought; while the facts that He died and that He was made of no reputation, held forth no hope of enviable fame or earthly advantage to those who should attempt to re-establish His doctrine.

On the contrary, if such had been the object of those who preached Jesus, would they not speedily have given it up when they found that it brought disgrace, persecution, imprisonment, stripes and even death? Reason plainly teaches that men who sacrificed home, reputation, honor and life; who lived not for present gratification; but whose central aim was to elevate their fellow-men, and who inculcated morals of the highest type, were not only possessed of a motive, but further that their motive must have been pure and their object grandly sublime.

Reason further declares that the testimony of such men, activated only by pure and good motives, is worthy of ten times the weight and consideration of ordinary writers. Nor were these men fanatics; they were men of sound and reasonable mind, and furnished in every case reason for their faith and hope; and they were perseveringly faithful to those reasonable convictions.


And what we have here noticed is likewise applicable to the various writers of the Old Testament. They were, in the main, men notable for their fidelity to the Lord; and this history as impartially records and reproves their weaknesses and shortcomings as it commends their virtues and faithfulness. This must astonish those who presume the Bible to be a manufactured history, designed to awe men into reverence of a religious system. There is a straightforwardness about the Bible that stamps it as Truth. Knaves, desirous of representing a man as great, and especially if desirous of presenting some of his writings as inspired of God, would undoubtedly paint such a one's character blameless and noble to the last degree.

The fact that such a course has not been pursued in the Bible is reasonable evidence that it was was not fraudulently gotten up to deceive. [HG532] Having, then, reason to expect a revelation of God's will and Plan, and having found that the Bible, which claims to be that revelation, was written by men whose motives we see no reason to impugn, but which, on the contrary, we see reason to approve, let us examine the character of the writings claimed as inspired, to see whether their teachings correspond with the character we have reasonably imputed to God, and whether they bear internal evidence of their truthfulness.

The first five books of the New Testament and several of the Old Testament are narratives or histories of facts known to the writers and vouched for by their characters. It is manifest to all that it did not require a special revelation simply to tell the truth with reference to matters with which they were intimately and fully acquainted. Yet, since God desired to make a revelation to men the fact that these histories of passing events have a bearing on that revelation would be a sufficient ground to make the inference a reasonable one, that God would supervise, and so arrange, that the honest writer whom He selected for the work should be brought in contact with the needful facts. The credibility of these historic portions of the Bible rests almost entirely upon the characters and motives of their writers. Good men will not utter falsehoods. A pure fountain will not give forth bitter waters.

And the united testimony of these writings silences any suspicion that their authors would say or do evil, that good might follow.


It in no way invalidates the truthfulness of certain books of the Bible, such as Kings, Chronicles, Judges, etc., when we say that they are simply truthful and carefully kept histories of prominent events and persons of their times. When it is remembered that the Hebrew Scriptures contain history, as well as the Law and the prophecies, and that their histories, genealogies, etc., were the more explicit in detailing circumstances because of the expectancy that the promised Messiah would come in a particular line from Abraham, we see a reason for the recording of certain facts of history considered indelicate in the light of this twentieth century.

For instance, a clear record of the origin of the nations of the Moabites and of the Ammonites, and of their relationship to Abraham and the Israelites, was probably the necessity in the historian's mind for a full history of their nativity. (Gen. 19:36-38) Likewise, a very detailed account of Judah's children is given, of whom came David, the king, through whom the genealogy of Mary, Jesus' mother, as well as that of Joseph, her Husband (Luke 3:23, 31, 33, 34; Matt. 1:16), is traced back to Abraham. Doubtless the necessity of thoroughly establishing the pedigree was the more important, since of this tribe (Gen. 49:10) was to come the ruling King of Israel, as well as the promised Messiah, and hence the minutiae of detail not given in other instances. Gen. 38 There may be similar or different reasons for other historic facts recorded in the Bible, of which by and by we may see utility which, were it not a history, but simply a treatise on morals, might without detriment be omitted; though no one can reasonably say that the Bible anywhere countenances impurity. It is well, furthermore, to remember that the same facts may be more or less delicately stated in any language: and that while the translators of the Bible were, rightly, too conscientious to omit any of the record, yet they lived in a day less particular in the choice of refined expressions than ours; and the same may be surmised of the early Bible times and habits of expression. Certainly the most fastidious can find no objection on this score to any expression of the New Testament.


The first five books of the Bible are known as the Five Books of Moses, though they nowhere mention his name as their author. That they were written by Moses, or under his supervision, is a reasonable inference; the account of his death and burial being properly added by his secretary. The omission of the positive statement that these books were written by Moses is no proof against the thought; for had another written them to deceive and commit a fraud, he would surely have claimed that they were written by the great leader and statesman of Israel, in order to make good his imposition. See Deut. 31:9-27.

Of one thing we are certain, Moses did lead out of Egypt the Hebrew nation. He did organize them as a nation under the laws set forth in these books; and the Hebrew nation, by common consent, for over three thousand years, has claimed these books as a gift to them from Moses, and has held them so sacred that a jot or little must not be altered-thus giving assurance of the purity of the text.

These writings of Moses contain the only credible history extent of the epoch which it traverses. Chinese history affects to begin at creation, telling how God went out on the water in a skiff, and, taking in His hand a lump of earth, cast it into the water. That lump of earth, it claims, became this world, etc. But the entire story is so devoid of reason that the merest child of intelligence would not be deceived by it. On [HG533] the contrary, the account given in Genesis starts with the reasonable assumption that a God, a Creator, an intelligent First Cause, already existed, it treats not of God's having a beginning, but of His work and of its beginning and its systematic, orderly progress- "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth."

Then, stepping over the origin of the earth without detail or explanation, the narrative of the six days (epochs) of preparing it for man proceeds. That account is substantially corroborated by the accumulating light of science for four thousand years; hence it is far more reasonable to accept the claim that its author, Moses, was Divinely inspired, than to assume that the intelligence of one man was superior to the combined intelligence and research of the rest of the race in three thousand years since, aided by modem implements and millions of money.

Look next at the system of laws laid down in these writings. They certainly were without an equal, either in their day or since, until this twentieth century; and the laws of this century are based upon the principles laid down in the Mosaic Law, and framed in the main by men who acknowledge the Mosaic Law as of Divine origin.


The Decalogue is a brief synopsis of the whole Law. Those Ten Commandments enjoin a code of worship and morals that must strike every student as remarkable; and if never before known, and now found among the ruins and relics of Greece, or Rome, or Babylon (nations which have risen and fallen again, long since those laws were given), they would be regarded as marvelous if not supernatural. But familiarity with them and their claims has begotten measurable indifference, so that their real greatness is unnoticed except by the few. True, those commandments do not teach of Christ; but they were given, not to Christians, but to Hebrews; not to teach faith in a Ransom, but to convince men of their sinful state; and need of a Ransom. And the substance of those commandments was grandly epitomized by the illustrious founder of Christianity, in the words, "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength;" and 'Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself." Mark 12:30, 31

The government instituted by Moses differed from all others, ancient and modern, in that it claimed to be that of the Creator Himself, and the people were held accountable to Him; their laws and institutions, civil and religious, claimed to emanate from God, and, as we shall presently see, were in perfect harmony with what reason teaches us to be God's character. The Tabernacle, in the center of the camp, had in its "Most Holy" apartment a manifestation of Jehovah's presence as their King, whence by supernatural means they received instruction for the proper administration of their affairs as a nation. An order of priests was established, which had complete charge of the Tabernacle, and through them alone access and communion with Jehovah was permitted.

The first thought of some in this connection would perhaps be, "Ahl there we have the object of their organization; with them, as with other nations, the priests ruled the people, imposing upon their credulity and exciting their fears for their own honor and profit." But hold, friend; let us not too hastily assume anything.

Where there is such good opportunity for testing this matter by the facts, it would not be reasonable to jump to conclusions without the facts. The unanswerable evidences are contrary to such suppositions. The rights and the privileges of the priests were limited; they were given no civil power whatever, and wholly lacked opportunity for using their of lice to impose upon the rights or consciences of the people; and this arrangement was made by Moses, member of the priestly line.


As God's representative in bringing Israel out of Egyptian bondage, . the force of circumstances had centralized the government in his hand, and made the meek Moses an autocrat in power and authority, though from the meekness of his disposition he was in fact the overworked servant of the people, whose very life was being exhausted by the onerous cares of his position. At this juncture a civil government was established, which was virtually a democracy. Let us not be misunderstood; regarded as unbelievers would esteem it, Israel's government was a democracy, but regarded in the light of its own claims, it was a Theocracy, i. e., a Divine Government; for the laws given by God, through Moses, permitted of no amendments; they must neither add to nor take from their code of laws. Thus seen, Israel's government was different from any other civil government, either before or since.

The Lord said unto Moses, Gather unto Me seventy men of the elders of Israel, whom thou knowest to be elders of the people and officers over them; and bring them unto the Tabernacle of the congregation, that they may stand there with thee.

And I will come down and talk with thee there, and I will take of the spirit [HG534] which is upon thee and will put it upon them, and they shall bear the burden of the people with thee, that thou bear it not alone." (Num. 11:16, 17. See also (verses 24 to 30) for an example of true and guileless statesmanship and meekness) Moses, rehearsing this matter, says, "So I took the chief of your tribes, wise men, and known [of influence], and made them heads over you; captains over thousands, and captains over hundreds, and captains over fifties, and captains over tens, and officers among your tribes." Deut. 1:15; Exo. 18:13-26


Thus it appears that this distinguished lawgiver, so far from seeking to perpetuate or increase his own power by placing the government of the people under the control of his direct relatives, of the priestly tribe, to use their religious authority to fetter the rights and liberties of the people, on the contrary, introduced to the people a form of government calculated to cultivate the spirit of liberty. The histories of other nations and rulers show no parallel to this. In every case the ruler has sought his own aggrandizement and greater power. Even in instances where such have aided in establishing republics, it has appeared from subsequent events that they did it through policy, to obtain favor with the people, and to perpetuate their own power.

Circumstanced as Moses was, any ambitious man, governed by policy and attempting to perpetuate a fraud upon the people, would have worked for greater centralization of power in himself and his family; especially as this would have seemed an easy task from the religious authority being already in that tribe, and from the claim of this nation to be governed by God, from the Tabernacle. Nor is it supposable that a man capable of forming such laws, and of ruling such a people, would be so dull of comprehension as not to see what the tendency of his course would be. So completely was the government of the people put into their own hands, that though it was stipulated that the weightier cases which those governors could not decide were to be brought unto Moses, yet they themselves were the judges as to what cases went before Moses- "The cause which is too hard for you, bring it unto me, and I will hear it." Deut. 1:17 Thus seen, Israel was a republic whose of firers acted under a Divine commission.

And to the confusion of those who ignorantly claim that the Bible sanctions an established empire rule over the people, instead of "a government of the people by the people," be it noted that this republican form of civil government continued for over four hundred years. And it was then changed for that of a kingdom at the request of "The Elders," without the Lord's approval, who said to Samuel, then acting as a sort of informal president, "Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they shall say unto thee, for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected Me, that I should not reign over them."

At God's instance Samuel explained to the people how their rights and liberties would be disregarded, and how they would become servants by such a change; yet thy had become infatuated with the popular idea, illustrated all around them in other nations. (1 Sam. 8:6-22) In considering this account of their desire for a king; who is not impressed with the thought that Moses could have firmly established himself at the head of a great empire without difficulty?

While Israel as a whole constituted one nation, yet the tribal division was ever recognized after Jacob's death. Each family, or tribe, by common consent, elected or recognized certain members as its representatives, or chiefs. This custom was continued even through their long slavery in Egypt. These were called chiefs or elders, and it was to these that Moses delivered the honor and power of civil government; whereas, had he desired to centralize power in himself and his own family, these would have been the last men to honor with power and office.

The instructions given those appointed to civil rulership as from God are a model of simplicity and purity. Moses declares to the people, in the hearing of these judges, "I charged your judges at that time, saying, Hear the causes between your brethren, and judge righteously between every man and his brother, and the stranger [foreigner] that is with him. Ye shall not respect persons in judgment; but ye shall hear the small as well as the great; ye shall not be afraid of the face of man, for the judgment is God's; and the cause that is too hard for you, bring it unto me, and I will hear it." (Deut. 1:16, 17) Such hard cases were, after Moses' death, brought directly to the Lord through the High Priest, the answer being Yes or No, by the Urim and Thummim.

In view of these facts what shall we say of the theory which suggests that these books were written by knavish priests to secure to themselves influence and power over the people? Would such men for such a purpose forge records destructive to the very aims they sought to advance-records which prove conclusively that the great Chief of Israel, and one of their own tribe, at the instance of God, cut off the priesthood from civil power by placing that power in the hands of the people? Does any one consider such a conclusion reasonable? [HG535]


Again, it is worthy of note that the laws of the most advanced civilization, in this twentieth century, do not more carefully provide that rich and poor shall stand on a common level in accountability before the civil law. Absolutely no distinction was made by Moses' Law. And as for the protection of the people from the dangers incident to some becoming very poor and others excessively wealthy and powerful, no other national law has ever been enacted which so carefully guarded this point. Moses' Law provided for a restitution every fiftieth year-their Jubilee year. This law, by preventing the absolute alienation of property, thereby prevented its accumulation in the hands of a few. (Leviticus 25:9, 13-23, 27-30) In fact, they were taught to consider themselves brethren, and to act accordingly; to assist each other without compensation, and to take no usury of one another. See Exo. 22:25; Leviticus 25:36; Num. 26:52-56.

All the Laws were made public, thus preventing designing men from successfully tampering with the rights of the people. The Laws were exposed in such a manner that any one who chose might copy them; and, in order that the poorest and most unlearned might not be ignorant of them, it was made the duty of the priests to read them to the people at their septennial festivals. (Deut. 31:10-13) Is it reasonable to suppose that such laws and arrangements were designed by bad men, or by men scheming to defraud the people of their liberties and happiness?

Such an assumption would be unreasonable.

In its regard for the rights and interests of foreigners and of enemies, the Mosaic Law was thirty-two centuries ahead of its times-if indeed the laws of the most civilized of today equal it in fairness and benevolence. We read: "Ye shall have one manner of Law as well for the stranger [foreigner] as for one of your own country; for I am the Lord your God." Exo. 12:49; Leviticus 24:22 "And if a stranger sojourn with thee in your land, ye shall not vex him; but the stranger that dwelleth with you shall be unto you as one born among you; and thou shalt love him as thyself, for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt." Leviticus 19:33, 34 "If thou meet shine enemy's ox or his ass going astray, thou shalt surely bring it back to him again. If thou see the ass of him that hateth thee lying under his burden, wouldst thou cease to leave thy business and help him? Thou shalt surely leave it, to join with [assist] him." Exo. 23:4, 5, margin Even the dumb animals were not forgotten. Cruelty to these as well as to human beings was prohibited strictly. An ox must not be muzzled while threshing the grain, for the good reason that any laborer is worthy of his food. Even the ox and the ass must not plow together, because so unequal in strength and tread; it would be cruelty. Their rest was also provided for. Deut. 25:4; 22:10; Exo. 23:12

The priesthood may be claimed by some to have been a selfish institution, because the tribe of Levi was supported by the annual tenth, or tithe, of the individual produce of their brethren of the other tribes. This fact, stated thus, is an unfair presentation too common to skeptics, who, possibly ignorantly, thereby misrepresent one of the most remarkable evidences of God's part in the organization of that system; and that it was not the work of a selfish and scheming priesthood. Indeed, it is not infrequently misrepresented by a modem priesthood, which urges a similar system now, using that as a precedent, without mentioning the conditions upon which it was founded, or its method of payment.

It was, in fact, founded upon the strictest equity. When Israel came into possession of the land of Canaan, the Levites certainly had as much right to a share of the land as the other tribes; yet, by God's express command, they got none of it, except certain cities or villages for residence, scattered among the various tribes, whom they were to serve in religious things. Nine times is this prohibition given, before the division of the land. Instead of the land, some equivalent should surely be provided them, and the tithe was therefore this reasonable and just provision. Nor is this all. The tithe, though, as we have seen, a just debt was not enforced as a tax, but was to be paid as a voluntary contribution.

And no threat bound them to make those contributions; all depended upon their conscientiousness. The only exhortations to the people on the subject are as follows: "Take heed to thyself that thou forsake not the Levite as long as thou livest upon the earth." (Deut. 12:19) "And the Levite that is within thy gates, thou shalt not forsake him; for he hath no part nor inheritance with thee [in the land]." Deut. 14:27


Is it, we ask, reasonable to suppose that this order of things would have been thus arranged by selfish and ambitious priests?-an arrangement to disinherit themselves and to make them dependent for support upon their brethren. Does not reason teach us to the contrary?

In harmony with this, and equally inexplicable on [HG536] any other grounds than those claimed-that God is the author of those laws-is the fact that no special provision was made for honoring the priesthood. In nothing would impostors be more careful than to provide reverence and respect for themselves, and severest penalties and curses upon those who misused them. But nothing of the kind appears; no special honor, or reverence, or immunity from violence or insult, is provided.

The common Law, which made no distinction between classes, and was no respecter of persons, was their only protection. This is the more remarkable because the treatment of servants, and strangers, and the aged, was the subject of special legislation. For instance, Thou shalt not vex nor oppress a stranger, or widow, or fatherless child; for if they cry at all unto Me [to God] I will surely hear their cry, and My wrath shall wax hot, and I will kill you with the sword, and your wives shall be widows and your children fatherless. (Exo. 22:21-24; 23:9; Leviticus 19:33, 34) "Thou shalt not oppress an hired servant that is poor and needy, whether he be of thy brethren, or of strangers that are in thy land, within thy gates.

At his day thou shalt give him his hire, neither shall the sun go down upon it, for he is poor, and setteth his heart upon it, lest he cry against thee unto the Lord and it be sin unto thee." (Leviticus 19:13; Deut. 24:14, 15; Exo. 21:26, 27) "Thou shalt rise up before the hoary head and honor the face of the old man." (Leviticus 19:32. See also Leviticus 19:14) All this, yet nothing special for Priests, or Levites, or their tithes.


The sanitary arrangements of the Law, so needful to a poor and long-oppressed people, together with the arrangements and limitations respecting clean and unclean animals which might or might not be eaten, are remarkable, and would, with other features, be of interest if space permitted their examination, as showing that Law to have been abreast with, if not in advance of, the latest conclusions of medical science on the subject. The Law of Moses had also a typical character, which we must leave for future consideration; but even our hasty glance has furnished overwhelming evidence that this Law, which constitutes the very framework of the entire system of revealed religion, which the remainder of the Bible elaborates, is truly a marvelous display of wisdom and justice, especially when its date is taken into consideration.

In the light of reason, all must admit that it bears no evidence of being the work of wicked, designing men, but that it corresponds exactly with what nature teaches to be the character of God. It gives evidence of His Wisdom, Justice and Love. And further, the evidently pious and noble lawgiver, Moses, denies that the Laws were his own, and attributes them to God. Exod. 24:12; Deut. 9:9-11; Exo. 26:30; Leviticus 1:1 In view of his general character, and his commands to the people not to bear false witness, and to avoid hypocrisy and lying, is it reasonable to suppose that such a man bore false witness and palmed off his own views and laws for those of God?

It should be remembered also that we are examining the present copies of the Bible, and that therefore the integrity for which it is so marked applies equally to the successors of Moses; for though bad men were among those successors, who did seek their own and not the people's good, it is evident that they did not tamper with the Sacred Writings, which are pure to this day.


Glance now at the general character of the prophets of the Bible and their testimonies. A rather remarkable fact is that the prophets, with few exceptions, were not of the priestly class and that in their day their prophecies were generally repugnant to the degenerating and time-serving priesthood, as well as to the idolatrously inclined people. The burden of their messages from God to the people was generally reproof for sin, coupled with warnings of coming punishments, intertwined with which we find occasional promises of future blessings, after they should be cleansed from sin and should return to favor with the Lord. Their experiences, for the most part, were far from enviable; they were generally reviled, many of them being imprisoned and put to violent deaths. (See 1 Kings 18:4, 10, 17, 18; 19:10; Jer. 38:6; Heb. 11:32-38) In some instances it was years after their death before their true character as God's prophets was recognized. But we speak thus of the prophetic writers whose utterances claim to be the direct inspiration of Jehovah.

When it is remembered that these prophets were mainly laymen, drawing no support from the tithes of the priestly tribe; and when, added to this, is the fact that they were frequently not only the reprovers of kings and judges, but also of priests (though they reproved not the office, but the personal sins of the men who filled it), it becomes evident that we could not reasonably decide that these prophets were parties to any league of priests, or others, to fabricate falsehood in the name of God. Reason, in the light of facts, contradicts such a suspicion. [HG537] If, then, we find no reason to impeach the motives of the various writers of the Bible, but find that the spirit of its various parts is righteousness and truth, let us next proceed to inquire whether there exists any link or bond of union between the records of Moses, those of the other prophets, and those of the New Testament writers. If we shall find one common line of thought interwoven throughout the Law and the Prophets and the New Testament writings, which cover a period of fifteen hundred years, this, taken in connection with the character of the writers, will be a good reason for admitting their claim-that they are Divinely inspired-particularly if the theme common to all of them is a grand and noble one, comporting well with what sanctified common sense teaches regarding the character and attributes of God.

Marked in the Development of the Divine Plan

This article, printed below, was excerpted from The Divine Plan of the Ages, Chapter 4, pages A65-A75.

As some ignorantly misjudge the skill and wisdom of a great architect and builder by his unfinished work, so also many in their ignorance now misjudge God by His unfinished work; but by and by, when the rough scaffolding of evil, which has been permitted for man's discipline, and which shall finally be overruled for his good, has been removed, and the rubbish cleared away, God's finished work will universally declare His infinite Wisdom and Power; and His plans will be seen to be in harmony with His glorious character.


Since God tells us that He has a definitely fixed purpose, and that all His purposes shall be accomplished, it behooves us, as His children, to inquire diligently what those plans are, that we may be found in harmony with them. Notice how emphatically Jehovah affirms the fixedness of His purpose: "Jehovah of hosts hath sworn, saying, Surely as I have thought, so shall it come to pass; and as I have purposed, so shall it be." "The Lord of hosts hath purposed, and who shall disannul it?" "I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like Me.... My counsel shall stand, and I will do all My pleasure.... Yea, I have spoken it, I will also bring it to pass; I have purposed it, I will also do it." (Isa. 14:24-27; 46:9-11) Therefore, however haphazard or mysterious God's dealings with men may appear, those who believe this testimony of His Word must acknowledge that His original and unalterable Plan has been, and still is, progressing systematically to completion.

While the mass of mankind, groping in the darkness of ignorance, must await the actual developments of God's Plan before they can realize the glorious character of the Divine Architect, it is the privilege of the child of God to see by faith and the light of his "lamp" the foretold glories of the future, and thereby to appreciate the otherwise mysterious dealings of the past and the present. Therefore, as interested sons of God and heirs of a promised inheritance, we apply to our Father's Word, that we may understand His purposes from the plans and specifications therein given. There we learn that the Plan of God, with reference to man, spans three great periods of time, beginning with man's creation and reaching into the illimitable future. St. Peter and St. Paul designate these periods "three worlds," which we represent in the following diagram:


These three great Epochs represent three distinct manifestations of Divine Providence. The first, from creation to the flood, was under the ministration of angels, and is called by St. Peter "the world that was." 2 Pet. 3:6 The second great Epoch, from the flood to the establishment of the Kingdom of God, is under the [HG538] limited control of Satan, "the prince of this World." and is, therefore, called "this present evil World." Gal. 1:4; 2 Pet. 3:7 The third is to be a "World without end" (Isa. 45:17) under Divine administration, the Kingdom of God, and is called "The World to come-wherein dwelleth righteousness." Heb. 2:5; 2 Pet. 3:13


The First of these periods, or worlds, under the ministration of angels, was a failure; the Second, under the rule of Satan, the Usurper, has been indeed an "evil World;" but the Third will be an era of righteousness and of blessing to all the families of the earth.

The last two of these "Worlds" are most particularly mentioned, and the statements relative to them are in strong contrast. The present, or second period, is called "the present evil World," not because there is nothing good in it, but because in it evil is permitted to predominate. "Now we call the proud happy; yea, they that work wickedness are set up; yea, they that tempt God are even delivered." (Mal. 3:15) The third World or Epoch is mentioned as "The World to come, wherein dwelleth righteousness"-not because there will be no evil in it, but because evil will not predominate. The blotting out of evil will be gradual, requiring all of the first thousand years. Evil will not rule then, it will not prosper; it will no longer be the wicked that will flourish; but "the righteous shall flourish" (Psa. 72:7), the "obedient shall eat the good of the land" (Isa. 1:19), and "the evil doer shall be cut off." Psa. 37:9 Thus seen, the next Dispensation is to be so dissimilar as to be the very reverse of the present one in almost every particular. Our Lord's words show why there is to be a difference between the present and the future Dispensations. It is because He will be the Prince or Ruler of the World to come, that in it righteousness and truth will prosper; while, because Satan is the prince (ruler) of the present evil World, evil prospers and the wicked flourish. It is because, as Jesus said, "the prince of this World" "hash nothing in Me"-and consequently no interest in His followers except to oppose, tempt, annoy and buffet them (John 14:30; 2 Cor. 12:7)-that in this present evil World or Epoch, whosoever will live godly shall suffer persecution, while the wicked flourish like a green bay tree. 2 Tim. 3:12; Psa. 37:35


Jesus said, "My Kingdom is not of this World," and until the era or "World to come" does come, Christ's Kingdom will not control the earth. And for this we are taught to hope and pray, "Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth." Satan is the "ruler of the darkness of this World," and therefore "darkness covers the earth and gross darkness the people." He now rules and works in the hearts of the children of disobedience. Eph. 2:2; 6:12 There must be some very important part of the great Architect's Plan for man's salvation not yet fully developed-else the New Prince and the New Dispensation would have been long ago introduced. Why it was postponed for an appointed time, and also the manner of the change from the present dominion of evil under Satan to that of righteousness under Christ, are points of interest which will be more fully shown hereafter. Suffice it now to say that the kingdoms of this World, now subject to Satan, are at the proper time to become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ. Rev. 11:15

The context shows that the transfer will be accomplished by a general time of trouble. In reference to it, Jesus said, "No man c an enter into a strong man's house and spoil his goods, except he will first bind the strong man, and then he will spoil his house." (Mark 3:22-27)

Thus we are taught that Satan must first be bound, restrained and deposed before Christ's reign of righteousness and peace can be established. This binding of Satan is accordingly shown to be the first work of the New Dispensation. Rev. 20:2


It should be remembered that this earth is the basis of all these "Worlds" and Dispensations, and that though ages pass and Dispensations change, still the earth continues- "The earth abideth forever." (Eccl. 1:4) Carrying out the same figure, St. Peter calls each of these periods a separate Heavens and Earth. Here the word Heavens symbolizes the higher or spiritual controlling powers, and Earth symbolizes human government and social arrangements. Thus the First Heavens and Earth, or the order and arrangement of things then existing, having served their purpose, ended at the flood. But the physical heavens (sky and atmosphere), and the physical earth, did not pass away-they remained.

So likewise the present World (heavens and earth) will pass away with a great noise, fire and melting-confusion, trouble and dissolution. The strong man (Satan), being bound, will struggle to retain his power. The present order or arrangement of government and society, not that of the physical sky and earth, will pass [HG539] away. The present Heavens (powers of spiritual control) must give place to the "New Heavens"-Christ's spiritual control, soon to be established.

The present Earth (human society as now organized under Satan's control) must symbolically melt and be dissolved, in the beginning of the "Day of the Lord," which "shall burn as an oven." (Mal. 4:1) It will be succeeded by "a New Earth," i. e., society reorganized in harmony with earth's new Prince-Christ.

Righteousness, peace and love will rule among men when present arrangements have given place to the new and better Kingdom, the basis of which will be the strictest Justice.


St. Paul was given a glimpse of the next Dispensation, or, as he calls it, "the World to come." He says he was "caught away" (physically or mentally, or both, he could not tell, things were so real to his view) down the stream of time to the new condition of things, the "New Heaven," hence the "Third Heaven." He thus saw things as they will be under the spiritual control of Christ, things which he might not disclose. (2 Cor. 12:2-4) Doubtless these were the same things which St. John afterward saw, and was permitted to express to the Church in symbols, which may be understood only as they become due. St. John, in the revelation given to him by our Lord on the Isle of Patmos, was in vision carried down through this Christian Age and its changing scenes of Church and State to the end of the present evil World, or Epoch, and there in prophetic visions he saw Satan bound, Christ reigning; and the New Heaven and the New Earth established; for the former Heaven and Earth were passed away. Rev. 21:1


We now notice the Ages into which these great Epochs are subdivided, as illustrated in the diagram below: The First of these great Epochs (" Worlds") was not subdivided: God's method of dealing with men did not vary during all that time-from Adam's fall to the flood.

God had given man His law written in his very nature; but after he had sinned He left him measurably to his own course, which was downward, "evil, and that continually," that thus man might realize his folly, and that the wisdom of God in commanding absolute obedience might be made manifest. That Dispensation ended with a flood, which took away all but faithful Noah and his family. Thus the first Dispensation not only manifested the disastrous effects of sin, but showed that the tendency of sin is downward to greater degradation and misery, and proves the necessity of Jehovah's interposition, if the recovery of "that which was lost"-Man's First Estate-is ever to be accomplished.

The Second Epoch, or "World that now is," includes three Ages, each a step in the Plan of God for the overthrow of evil. Each step is higher than that preceding it, and carries the Plan forward and nearer to completion.

The Third Great Epoch- "the World to come"-future from the second advent of Christ, comprises the Millennial Age, or "Times of Restitution;" and following it are other "Ages to come," the particulars of which are not revealed. Present revelations treat of man's recovery from sin, and not of the eternity of glory and blessing to follow.


The first Age in the "World that now is" we call the Patriarchal Age, or Dispensation, because during that period God's dealings and favors were with a few individuals only, the remainder of mankind being almost ignored. Such favored ones were the patriarchs Noah, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Each of these in turn seems to have been God's favored one. At the death of Jacob that Age or Order of dealing ended. At Jacob's death his descendants were first called "the twelve tribes of Israel," and were together recognized of God as His "peculiar people;" and through typical sacrifices they were typically "a holy nation," separated from other nations for a particular purpose, and therefore to enjoy certain special favors.

The time allotted to this feature of the Divine Plan, beginning here and ending at the death of Christ, we designate the Jewish Age, or the Law Dispensation.

During that Age God specially blessed that nation. He gave them His Law; He made a special Covenant with them; He gave them the Tabernacle, whose shekinah glory in the Most Holy represented Jehovah's presence with them as their Leader and King. To them He sent the Prophets, and finally His Son. Jesus performed His miracles and taught in their midst, and would neither go to others Himself nor permit His disciples to go to the surrounding nations. He sent them out, saying, "Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city [HG540] of the Samaritans enter ye not; but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel." (Matt. 10:5, 6) And again He said, "I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel." Matt. 15:24


That this national favor ended with their rejection and crucifixion of Jesus is shown by Jesus' words when, five days before His crucifixion, He declared, "Your house is left unto you desolate." Matt. 23:38 There, at Jesus' death, a New Age began-the Christian Age or Gospel Dispensation, wherein should be heralded good tidings of justification, not to the Jew only, but to all nations; for "Jesus Christ, by the grace of God, tasted death for every man." During this Gospel Age also there is a class called to special favor, to whom special promises are made; namely, those who by faith accept Christ Jesus as their Redeemer and Lord, following in His footsteps. The Gospel proclamation has gone hither and thither through the earth for nearly nineteen hundred years, so that it can now be said that it has been preached more or less in every nation. It has not converted nations-it was not designed to do so in this Age-but it has selected here and there some, in all a "little flock," as Jesus had foretold (Luke 12:32), "to whom it is the Father's good pleasure to give the Kingdom" in an Age to follow this.


With this Age the "present evil world" ends; and mark well that while God has been thus permitting the predominance and reign of evil, to the seeming detriment of His cause, nevertheless His deep designs have been steadily progressing according to a fixed and definite Plan, and in the exact order of the seasons which He has appointed. In the end of this Age, and the dawn of its successor, the Millennial Age, Satan is to be bound and his power overthrown, preparatory to the establishment of Christ's Kingdom and the beginning of "The world to come, wherein dwelleth righteousness."

Millennium, signifying a thousand years, is by common consent used as the name for the period mentioned in Rev. 20:4-the thousand years of Christ's reign, the First Age in the "World to come." During the Millennial Age there will be a Restitution of all things lost by the fall of Adam (Acts 3:19-21), and before its close all tears shall have been wiped away. Beyond its boundary, in the Ages of blessedness to follow, there shall be no more death, neither sorrow nor crying; neither shall there be any more pain. The former things will have passed away. (Rev. 21:4)


We have here only glanced at the mere outline of this Plan of the Ages. The more we examine it the more we will find in it perfect harmony, beauty and order. Each Age has its part to accomplish, necessary to the complete development of God's Plan as a whole. The Plan is a progressive one, gradually unfolding from Age to Age, upward and onward to the grand consummation of the original design of the Divine Architect, 'Who worketh all things after the counsel of His own will." (Eph. 1:11)

Not one of these great periods is an hour too long or too short for the accomplishment of its object. God is a wise economist of both time and means, though His resources are infinite; and no power, however malicious, for a moment retards or thwarts His purposes. All things, evil as well as good, under Divine supervision and overruling, are working together for the accomplishment of His sovereign will.

To an uninstructed and undisciplined mind, which can see only a little of the intricate machinery of God's Plan, it appears like anarchy, confusion and failure, just as the whole, or even a part, of an intricate machine would appear to a child.

To its immature and untutored mind it is incomprehensible, and the opposite motions of its wheels and belts are but confusion. But maturity and investigation will show that the seeming confusion is beautiful harmony, working good results.


As we pursue our study of the Divine Plan it is essential that we keep in memory these Ages and their respective peculiarities and objects; for in no one of them can the Plan be seen, but in all of them, even as a link is not a chain, but several links united form a chain. We obtain correct ideas of the whole Plan by noting the distinctive features of each part, and thus we are enabled to "rightly divide the Word of Truth."

A statement of the Word which belongs to one Epoch, or Dispensation, should not be applied to another, as things stated of one Age are not always true of another.

For instance, it would be an untruth to say of the present time that the knowledge of the Lord fills the whole earth, or that there is no need to say to your neighbor, Know the lord. (Isa. 11:9; Jer. 31:34) This is not true in this Age, and it cannot be true until the Lord, having come again, has [HG541] established His Kingdom; for throughout this Age there have been many seducing deceptions, and we are told that even in the very end of the Age- "In the last days evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse deceiving and being deceived." (2 Tim. 3:1,13)


A similar mistake, and a very common one, is to suppose that God's Kingdom is now established and ruling over the earth and that His will is now done among the nations. This is manifestly far from the truth, for the kingdoms of this world are supported and enriched through oppression, injustice and deceit to as great an extent as the increasing intelligence of the people will permit. Satan, the present "Prince of this World," must yet be displaced, and these kingdoms now under his control, must become the Kingdom of our Lord and of His Anointed, when He shall take unto Himself His great power and reign.


In the West, says the Kansas City Journal, many of the farmers are planting patches of alfalfa on the south side of their homes. They have found out that a field of growing alfalfa cools the temperature from ten to twenty degrees on a hot day. Alfalfa is filled with moisture and is death to hot winds, which usually come from the South. For the very opposite reason the farmers do not aim now to plant their wheat on the south side of their homes. Winds passing over wheat stubble after harvest time will raise the temperature from ten to twenty degrees. Scranton (Pa.) Tribune Republican


The Krupps, who supply guns to the German Empire and to half of the world besides, have now invented a terrible weapon known as the bomb gun. It fires a huge, very brittle bomb containing 160 pounds of chemicals. As it bursts it fills the air with poisonous gas in which no human being can live. The gases from one bomb will kill every one within a radius of 500 yards. This weapon apparently will make it impossible for soldiers to remain in the open trenches. In experiments on animals it was found that the fumes turned them green-Exchange.


The Ten Commandments, the Lord's Prayer and the Sermon on the Mount contain all the law that can be found in a library of 5,000 volumes containing all the reports of decided cases printed in the English language, and all the textbooks ever issued.

There is not a statute in the California codes-political, criminal or civil-the genesis and inspiration of which cannot be found in the Bible. It has been well said: "The child who has been trained to learn and obey the Ten Commandments will acquire an uprightness of character and steadfastness of purpose attainable in no other way. The man who takes the Bible as his chart in life will be a law-abiding citizen."

The Lord's Prayer contains in its every sentence something that refers to human experience and meets human needs. In the introduction to the Sermon on the Mount "we are taught humility, soberness, meekness, holy desire, mercifulness, purity, peacefulness." In the rest of the Master's great sermon which follows we have the higher meaning of the moral law expounded and illustrated, and by its use we are enabled to understand and teach more fully the meaning of the commandments.

Los Angeles Times


It is a very common mistake amongst both Protestants and Catholics to suppose that their Bibles are materially different. They are practically alike. The Editor has both versions in his study and uses both to advantage.

Anyone desirous of comparing the two Bibles can do so readily enough by calling at the Brooklyn Tabernacle book room, where both are supplied side by side at wholesale cost prices. Surely much of the prejudice formerly existing between Catholics and [HG542] Protestants is dissolving for the oncoming day of more faithful investigation.

More than half of all the troubles of the world are the results of misunderstanding.

Now that the Pope is calling upon Catholics everywhere to study the Bible, we urge upon those Protestants who have not already drifted into infidelity to begin a fresh investigation of God's Word, which through our greater intelligence and more general education is shining brighter and brighter-and this surely is a fulfillment of St. Peter's words, "We have a more sure word of prophecy, to which we do well to take heed, as unto a light which shineth in a dark place until the day dawn."-2 Pet. 1:19.

The new day of Divine blessing which the Bible so long foretold is dawning, and the manifold blessings and inventions of our day, both in temporal and spiritual matters, are but foregleams of the coming glory, which will transcend our brightests dreams. Satan will be bound. All evil influences will be brought under Divine control and the true knowledge of God shall fill the whole earth with light, joy and peace to all those who will yield submission to it.


This article was republished in Pastor Russell's Sermons, pages SM148-55, entitled, "The World's Judgment Day."


The leaders of Wesleyan Methodism are naturally greatly perturbed about the continued steady decline in their church membership.

For six successive years there has been a serious falling off, amounting in the aggregate to 15,575. Try as they will, those holding the strings of management seem powerless to arrest this apparent decadence, with the result that in some quarters the future of the Church is viewed with no small degree of alarm.

What are the causes which have led to the present position? A Daily Dispatch representative recently discussed this question with the Rev. Dr. Waddy Moss, of Didsbury College. "First of all," he said, "this decline in membership is general amongst the churches, evangelical and non-evangelical, Roman Catholic and Unitarian, as well as the Church of England. It is general, and therefore the cause must be general. As far as the general causes can be suggested, the choice lies between the spirit of indifference to religion and the competition of so many interests leading to a decay of the consciousness of church responsibility. That means that in everything, except in organized religion, the country is becoming increasingly Socialistic, but in organized religion increasingly individualistic. -Manchester (Eng.) Dispatch


Chief Willis L. Moore, of the Weather Bureau, who is head of the National Geographic Society as well, has advised the House Committee on Agriculture that during the past summer months "we found warm patches of air far above the earth."

"We have found," said Prof. Moore, "as a result of sending up balloons-and our observations are verified abroad-one of the most wonderful things in meteorology. All our physics have assumed that temperature gradually decreases with elevation until in outer space there is no temperature. We sent up balloons from Omaha and Indianapolis above the storm stratum, which is six miles deep, rising and falling with the seasons.

"Above the storm stratum there is an entirely different atmosphere, floating upon the storm element like oil on water, with an easterly velocity of only half that of the lower air. From the storm stratum up through this there is a slight rise in temperature. We call it an equally heated stratum-the isothermal. In this constant air ocean there are no storm eddies; in it even the minutest rays of light are [HG543] absorbed. We are living in a thin skin of air, illuminated, and all the rest between us and the sun is darkness." Halzfax Herald


In Mexico, when ax-President Diaz came into power, the marriage fee by the priest was $500. In sharp contrast with that price is the announcement in the New York American of April 16th that the Rev. Wm. H. Lynch, rector of St. John's Roman Catholic Church of Lambertville, N. J., has not only offered to perform all marriages during the year 1912 without charge, but to give a present to the bride.

The improvement is a good one. The high charge in Mexico led to immorality and the birth of thousands of illegitimate children, whose parents at Confessional were required to have high mass or to suffer in purgatory. Conditions are much improved since then in Mexico, and indeed, in this respect, are improved also in Spain, Italy, France and Austria. We congratulate the Lambertville priest for having gotten to the head of the procession.

2,800,000,000 TO TEAR DOWN

"If some one comes along and wants your boy to enter some kind of good work, don't get mad. Let him find what he wants to do. Fifty percent of the fifteen million between the ages of 15 and 35 years are misfits, and many are going to their daily task to support the folks at home. Ten out of every 100 go to church; six out of every 100 are church members and only four do any church work. Two million dollars were spent last year for temperance, $15,000,000 for missions, S200.000,000 for schools, $850,000,000 for tobacco and $2,800,000,000 for whiskey. In other words, 1217,000,000 to build up and $2,800,000,000 to tear down." J. L. Schofield, Y. M. C. A. Secretary, Bloomington, Ill.


"Lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God; haven" a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof. From such turn away." 2 Tim. 3:4, 5

Our text could scarcely apply better to present-day conditions if St. Paul had written the words this very day. The world seems to be going pleasure-mad. Very evidently we are in the "perilous times" mentioned in the context. It is proper that we investigate this tendency toward pleasure and formality as respects religion.

What is the cause of this condition? It is not because mankind have naturally more desire for pleasure than for God. On the contrary, Phrenology shows us that the very highest organs of the human mind are those which relate to spirituality and reverence. Under normal conditions, therefore, all mankind might reasonably be expected to have their chief pleasure in spiritual things, in harmony with a proper reverence for their Creator and His will.

What has changed this natural condition, and turned the hearts of men away from reverence for God and spiritual things to sensuous pleasures, with merely an outward form of piety? The answer is that man's reverence for his Creator and for spiritual things has been taken advantage of by Satan. God has been pictured to men's mind as All-Powerfui and devilish. These false doctrines, St. Paul declares, are "doctrines of demons." (1 Tim. 4:1) These misconceptions, formulated into multitudinous creeds, became their idols. Each idol creed contained a little nucleus of truth, around which monstrous errors were aggregated. For a long time we blindly and stupidly worshiped our creed-idols, fighting for ourselves and against others. Contributing our money to the point of sacrifice and self-denial, we built costly temples, each party for his own idol.

We were kept so busily engaged in thus fighting and working and building, that we did not stop to carefully notice the horrible outlines of these idols, nor to consider their blasphemous misrepresentations of the true God of Justice, Wisdom, Love, Power.


The Apostle says, "They that sleep, sleep in the night, and they that are drunken are drunken in the night." Many thus have been asleep and have dreamed terrible things respecting the future which our Heavenly Father has ordained for His creatures. Various hallucinations and nightmares have afflicted us. Many have been drunken with the wine of false doctrines, mentioned in the Apocalypse, which tells us that this "drunkenness" or stupefaction of error has extended to all nations of Christendom. Rev. 18:3 [HG544] We may well thank God that "the night is far spent and the day is at hand." "The Sun of righteousness shall rise with healing in His beams." (Mal. 4:2) The result will be the complete scattering of darkness, superstition and error, which for so long have more or less beclouded the minds of many of us to the true character of our God and the true teachings of His Word. It is because we are in the dawning of the New Day that we are beginning to see, as never before, the horrible features of our creed idols.

The majority of Christians have not yet discovered the real character of the Almighty. They are in a transition state. They no longer worship their idols as formerly, yet they still worship them. We can direct them to worship the true God, but the idols so monstrously misrepresent the God of all Grace that the worship is necessarily faint and half-hearted; or, as the Apostle declares, it is merely "a form of godliness," without the power, the force, the strength which should accompany the worship of the true God, rightly understood and properly reverenced.


The dawning of the light of the New Day of Messiah begins to waken us from the nightmares of the Dark Ages. We have begun to doubt our creed idols. Many have ceased their worship altogether. Many others respect them merely as fetishes of the past. Some are afraid that if the masses cease to worship the idols all reverence for holy things will pass away and the world will lapse into heathenish darkness. We should remember, on the contrary, that we have been in heathenish darkness, and are merely now escaping from it. The heathen has had his idol of wood and stone while we have had more ethereal ones. The heathen's idols are ugly enough, yet far less horrible than the creed idols of civilized lands. No excuse will longer maintain idol worship of any kind.


The great difficulty with the masses is that, repudiating the idols, they are lapsing into agnosticism-doubt. They know not what they believe. They are looking for the Truth. They find the leaders of the creeds still bowing formally to the idols, but privately repudiating them. Such leaders are unworthy of confidence and only partially honest. Hungry and thirsty for something to satisfy the craving of their hearts, the famishing people are turning toward pleasure. "They are lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God."

Comparatively few any longer believe in purgatory or everlasting torment, but they believe that these doctrines have a Scriptural foundation, which they proportionately discredit, and charge with being the source of all their ignorance and superstition in the past. With faith in the Bible gone, the masses know not where to go nor whom to trust respecting enlightenment regarding the future.

They are reaching the conclusion that everything is a big guess, and that they may as well do their own guessing as to pay a minister to do it for them.

The situation is a deplorable one. As we have already intimated, humanity is so constituted that religion holds the very highest place in his mental organism-the seat of power and control in all the affairs of his life. With no fixed conviction, men are drifting. The learned are going into infidelity, under the more refined name of Higher Criticism. The poor and less learned are going into doubt respecting any intelligent Creator or Supervisor. As a matter of fact they are saying not only that there is no God who would torment mankind eternally, but apparently, there is no God who takes an interest in humanity.

In this frame of mind Socialism appeals to them. They propose to bring about "Paradise Restored," by the power of Socialism. They say to themselves, "We are without a God, without a tuture hope, and without confidence m our former views; 'Let us eat, drink and be merry'-let us enjoy life-let us get all that we can of pleasure out of present existence, for we are hopeless respecting a future one." Is it any wonder that the Apostle foretold that, under these conditions, the masses would become more and more pleasure-mad?

Thus we account for the great lament that is going up from all churches that the pews are empty, and the collection boxes empty, and that the system would go down except for the benevolent wealthy, who really do not believe in the creed idols, but who desire that others shall believe in them and worship them. In a word, the crowds which once flocked to the churches, with their nickels and pennies, now make for the theatres and crowd the hard, rough "bleachers" of the ball grounds. They have become lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, because the representations of God in the various creeds are too repulsive, too irrational, too devilish, to be longer believed in or worshiped. What the people need is a general smashing of all the creed idols and the unanimous return to the study of the Bible, and to the worship of the true God, which the Bible sets forth.


No men in the world are to be more sympathized with than the preachers. The creed idols have been [HG545] richly endowed by well-meaning votaries of the past. The interests of the clergy are all wrapped up with the interests of the creed idols-not only their financial interests, but their honor, dignity, titles. The question with the clergy today is, How can we smash the creed idols? How can we destroy them without ourselves perishing with them? If we tell the common people plainly what we believe, they will all leave the creed idols. They will ask us, How long is it since you came to this conclusion? If we tell them that we have not believed in our creeds for many years, will they not call us hypocritical and lose their confidence in us? And, besides, what could we offer them instead?

It is no secret that the great majority of the educated clergy are total unbelievers, not only in the creeds which they profess, but also in the Bible-they call themselves "Higher Critics" and "Evolutionists." They have nothing that they could teach the people, except their doubts, their misunderstandings. Having lost faith in the creed idols, they are seeking for the true God, in whom the masses believe little enough as it is. They are bound to God and religious things by a very slim cord composed of three strands-ignorance, superstition and natural reverence. The ignorance and superstition will soon break, and all that will be left will be man's natural reverence. Now is the time for replacing ignorance with knowledge, and superstition with loving obedience to the true God.


When Pastor Russell was in Boston some time ago delivering a discourse on this very subject, according to the newspaper reports the largest opera house of that great city, seating thirty-six hundred, was crowded; four hundred more were behind him on the platform, besides those who stood, and hundreds were turned away from the doors. The next day the editor of a religious journal called on the Pastor. His leading question was: "Pastor Russell, how do you explain the fact that the people of all creeds, and of the world, come in such crowds to your meetings?

I was present yesterday at the Boston Theatre and witnessed that vast concourse of intelligent people. As I looked at them I asked myself the question I am now asking you, 'How is it that such crowds attend your services, even in this sultry, summer weather, when the summer resorts and seashore pleasures would call them elsewhere, and while many of our leading and able ministers, supported by talented choirs, have small attendance-twenty, forty, fifty or so? What is your explanation?"

Pastor Russell's reply was, "My brother, I believe we are witnessing a fulfilment of the Scripture which says, 'There shall be a famine in the land! Not a famine for bread, nor a famine for water, but a famine for the hearing of the Word of the Lord.' (Amos 8:11) The public are getting their eyes too widely opened to ever again respect the God whom Brother Calvin pictured-a God, All-Wise and All-Powerful, but thoroughly unloving, who foreordained and predestinated a saintly handful to glory, and the unsaintly thousands of millions to an eternity of torture.

We once believed those things, but the new morning of God's grace in Christ Jesus is gradually scattering the darkness.

Neither can we longer believe with Brother Wesley that our God is good and loving, and would like to save everybody if He could, but was unwise in His creation of man, and is lacking in power to direct the matter now. The people are hungering for something better-for something consistent and rational and in accordance with the Bible declaration, that Divine Justice, Wisdom, Love and Power are co-ordinate-that God is Love, and is as just and wise and powerful as He is loving. The people need to be shown a theology which will accord with this Divine character and with the Divine statement that 'known unto the Lord are all His works from the beginning of the world, 'and again: 'My Word that goeth forth out of My mouth shall not return unto Me void, but shall accomplish that which I please, 'saith the Lord, 'and shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it. '"


Christian people need to believe the Bible doctrine of Election, but must see it in a different light from that which Brother Calvin threw upon the subject. They must see election from the Bible standpoint-the election of a saintly Church, a "little flock," "a royal priesthood, a holy people," to be the Bride of Christ, and His joint-heirs. They must see that this "elect" Church, with the Redeemer, is God's appointed channel for the blessing of the non-elect world. They need to be shown clearly that the saintly few, gathered first from the Jews, but subsequently completed by additions of those of saintly characters of all nations, are with Christ to become the great Seed of Abraham, the great Messiah, Abraham's spiritual Seed, "like the stars of heaven." It must then be shown why this spiritual Seed has been "called," "elected," selected from amongst mankind-that it is for the very purpose of blessing the non-elect, the masses of Adam's race, in harmony with God's promise to Abraham- "In thy Seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed."

St. Paul refers to this spiritual Seed, saying, "And to thy Seed, which is Christ," and, "If ye be Christ's, then [HG546] are ye Abraham's Seed, and heirs according to the promise." (Gal. 5:16-29) All these are Heirs of the great promise that has not yet been fulfilled. The fulfilment waits until the completion of a foreordained number, an elect "little flock" of the saintly few. Then these, changed by the power of the First Resurrection, from human nature to divine nature (2 Peter 1 :4), will constitute the glorious Kingdom of Messiah. The Kingdom blessings will go first to Abraham's natural seed, and through them to all nations.

God's character is so great, so grand, that if seen by men, it would be reverenced.

God's Plan of Salvation is so grandly beautiful that, when rightly understood and comprehended, it proves more fascinating than any novel.

The world has been kept away from God and from the Bible by the machinations of the Adversary. He has had much to do with the formation of our creed idols.

Seeing men breaking away from error, in the Reformation time, and groping after the Truth, Satan presented himself "as an angel of light" and misguided our fathers into the formation of their various creeds. This is corroborated by St.

Paul's words: "The god of this world hath blinded the minds of them that believe not, lest the glorious light of the goodness of God, as it shines in the face of Jesus Christ our Lord, should shine into their hearts" (2 Cor. 4:4) The Adversary did not wish us to see with "the eyes of our hearts" the glorious character of our Creator, His love for mankind and His glorious provision for us. He wished, on the contrary, to blind us with prejudice, to turn us away from God and from the Bible. And surely His plan has been measurably successful.

Nevertheless, Satan has gained no real victory, he has in no way hindered the finding of the "elect." Rather, we may assume that these various, blinding influences and stumbling stones have but served to prove, to test the love, loyalty, faith and obedience of the "called and chosen and faithful."

If we have seen why the world is going pleasuremad, and if we have seen the steps which should be taken to guide the well-intentioned into the ways of the Lord, let us not only be faithful ourselves to the Lord's way, but let us lift high the Royal Banner of our God and of our Savior, and "show forth the praises of Him who hath called us out of darkness into His marvelous light."


This article can be found in its entirety in the Newspaper Sermons, entitled, "The Spirit Willing, the Flesh Weak."


This article can be found in its entirety in the Newspaper Sermons, entitled, "The Formation of Character."


The number of insane persons in hospitals in the United States on January 1, 1904 (no later figures are available for the country as a whole), was not less than 150,151.

This was more than double the number in 1890, which was 74,028. From 1904 to 1910 the insane in hospitals in New York alone increased 25 per cent. It is safe to say that the insane now in hospitals in the United States number at least 200,000. [HG547] These unfortunates, if gathered together in one place, would make up a city approximately the size of Rochester, St. Paul, Seattle, Denver or Lousiville. The population of the state of Delaware in 1910 is almost exactly the same as the number of insane in the United States in 1904.

The population of Nevada and Wyoming in 1910 together is about equal to the population of the hospitals for the insane in the United States. The total annual cost of caring for the insane in the United States is in the neighborhood of S50,000,000 a year. About one-sixth of the total expenditure of the State of New York is for the care of the insane.

The New York State Charities Aid Association has outlined and is carrying into effect a movement for popular education along scientific lines by sound psychological methods as to the causes and prevention of insanity. As one factor in this educational movement a short leaflet has been prepared, stating in simple language the essential facts as to the causes of insanity so far as they are now known.

This leaflet is being printed not by hundreds, not by thousands, but by hundreds of thousands. It is being placed in the hands of men, women, boys and girls, through every form of organization willing to help in distributing it. It has been sent to every physician in the State, to the principal of every public school, to all clergymen, college presidents and faculties, superintendents of city schools, health officers, county school commissioners, secretaries of Y. M. C. A. 's, to officers of labor unions, proprietors of factories, department stores, laundries, to city officials, officers of local "ranges, officers of fraternal orders; in short to all the various types of organizations that are willing to promote such an effort for the public good. Amencan Review of Reviews The statisticians tell us that at the present rapid increase of insanity the entire world would be insane in less than two hundred years. Whether they figure correctly or not, there can be no doubt that insanity is rapidly increasing. The stress of our modern life is too great a strain. And all this proceeds, notwithstanding the great progress made along the lines of medicine and the care of the insane. What is the hope?

The hope set before us in the Bible is that soon-very soon, we believe-God's long-promised Kingdom or rule of righteousness will be established in the earth. The work of this Age will be ended. The election of the Church will be completed.

The Redeemer will have accepted the elect, saintly Church as His Bride. Then the Spirit and the Bride will say, "Come," and whosoever will may come and take of the Water of Life freely. Free Grace will then prevail, the election of the Church having been completed. There is no Bride yet, nor will there be until the marriage, nor will the marriage take place until the Heavenly Bridegroom comes to claim His Bride.

So then, God has His glorious panacea for the world's insanity and multitudinous diseases, mental, moral and physical. We may be glad and rejoice in proportion as we have faith in this Good Physician whom the Father hath appointed and who will shortly begin His work of restitution amongst mankind, which He foreshadowed by the healings and blessings accomplished at His first Advent. Acts 3:19-23


This article can be found in its entirety in the Newspaper Semnons, entailed, "Garlands Instead of Ashes."


Practically all the leading scientists of Italy have banded themselves into a committee for the purpose of investigating spiritualistic phenomena, and have been meeting in the physical laboratory of Naples University. The famous medium, Eusania Palladino has been called in by them, and only scientists have been admitted to the five seances which have taken place.

An official report is to be published by the committee, and it is awaited with the keenest interest in view of a declaration by its members in the columns [HG548] of the "Tribune" to the effect that they have been confronted with the existence of a new force, a force of terrible possibilities and superior to any force yet known.

According to the unofficial statements the results of the seances exceeded all expectations. The most striking phenomena were witnessed, and in each case photographs were taken.

These phenomena included: The materialization of some twenty spirits, the transportation through the air of numerous articles, the lifting of the medium from the ground by some unexplained agency, the appearance of many strange lights, the passage of solid bodies without leaving traces of their passage, the mysterious dragging of several members of the committee across the room against their with Exchange These mysterious happenings are nothing more or less than trickeries of "the spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places." Eph. 6:12


This article can be found in its entirety in the Newspaper Sermons, entitled, "The Value of Time to a Christian."


This article can be found in its entirety in Newspaper Sermons, entitled, "The Vengeance of Eternal Fire."


This article can be found in its entirety in the Newspaper Sermons, entitled, "Who are Not Fit for the Kingdom of God."


This article was republished in Reprints 4789-90-March 15, 1911, entailed, "A City Without Walls."

Volume 4, Number 8

An editorial by David Starr Jordan, President of Leland-Stanford University, and a leader in the Movement for Disarmament and World's Peace.

As teachers of private and to some extent of public morals, what shall we say to the recent gigantic parade on the Hudson of miles of war vessels on their way from the tax bureau to the junk shop?

Let us look on this mighty array of ships splendidly equipped and manned by able worthy men, the whole [HG549] never to be needed and never under any conceivable circumstances to be other than a burden and a danger to the nation which displays it.

We are told that a purpose of this pageant of the ships is to "popularize the navy."

This may mean to get us used to it and to paying for it, which is the chief function of the people in these great affairs. Or it may mean to work upon the public imagination so that we may fill the vacancies in the corps of sailors and marines who "glare" at us "through their absences."

By all means let us popularize the navy. It is our navy. We have paid for it, and it is for the people to do what they please with it. "For after all, this is the people's country." And perhaps we could bring it nearer to our hearts and thoughts if we should paint the white side of each ship, its cost in taxes, in the blood and sweat of working men, in the anguish of "the man lowest down."

There is the good ship North Dakota, for example. Her cost is almost exactly the year's earnings of the prosperous State for which she is named. As to the fine Dreadnoughts who fear nothing while the nation is in its senses and in war nothing but a torpedo boat or an aerobomb, it would please the working man to know that his wages for 20,000 years would purchase a ship of this kind, and that the wages of 1,600 of his fellows each year would keep it trim and afloat. As the procession moves by, he will see ships that have cost as much as Cornell University, or Yale, or Princeton, or Wisconsin, and almost as much as Harvard or Columbia. And on the flagship at the end, figures might be summed up, the whole costing as much as an American workman would earn perhaps in two million years, a European workman in four millions and an Asiatic in eight millions.

If all this is needed to insure the peace it endangers, by all means let us have it.

There is no cost we cannot afford to pay if honorable peace is at stake. But let us be convinced that peace is really at stake, and that this is the means to secure it.

There are some who think that Christian fellowship, the demands of commerce and a civil tongue in the foreign offices do more for a nation's peace than any show force.

Bernard Shaw observed that "Man is the only animal that esteems itself rich in proportion to the number and voracity of its parasites." Memphis (Tenn.) Press


The Canon is visiting the Rev. Dr. Francis Brown of Union Seminary, which was once Presbyterian, but now reports to no religious body. He praised the Union and its methods, and said he thought its students were able to get away from the pettiness that characterized so many other seminaries.

"If I could have my way," he went on, "I'd go about the country with dynamite and blow up every denominational seminary. I cannot stand them. I cannot breathe in them." The ministers, practically all of them graduates of the seminaries he proposed to blow up, cheered lustily. New York Press


The pastor of Tremont Temple (Baptist) denounced Boston society for its manner of living.

"Boston society is not living a Christian life today," said Dr. Myers. "There is too much gambling and drinking of wine. It well could be called 'Heathen society.' "- Boston Post


This article can be found in its entirety in Newspaper Sermons, entitled, "The Lost Key of Knowledge."


The Rev. De Mark A. Matthews of Seattle, Moderator of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church, addressed the Monday meeting of the ministers of that denomination in the Presbyterian Building on Fifth Avenue, yesterday, and stirred up plenty of comment and incidentally some resentment. A few of the remarks he made which his [HG550] hearers noted particularly follow: "The great curse resting on Presbyterian ministers today is that of time waste.

Ministers seem to have no sense of responsibility for the value of their own time.

"There are more Presbyterian churches in America standing still, marking time, going to pieces because of dead elderships in them, than from any other cause.

"The Presbyterian Church is merely playing at the task of making America Christian. It is merely toying with its part of the responsibility.

"The church ought to be organized as is the public school, with lower and higher grades."

Dr. Matthews paid his respects to the Trustees of Presbyterian churches, and charged most of them with being godless. He said many church officials were studying almost everything except the Bible, and interested in pretty much everything except religion. NY Times


Do as you would be done by. -Persian

Do not that to a neighbor which you would take ill from him. -Grecian

What you would not wish done to yourself do not do unto others. -Chinese

One should seek for others the happiness one desires for one's self.-Buddhist

He sought for others the good he desired for himself. Let him pass on.-Egyptian

All things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you do ye even so to them. -Christian

Let none of you treat his brother in a way he himself would dislike to be treated. -Mohammedan

The true rule of life is to guard and do by the things of others as they do by their own.-Hindu

The law imprinted on the hearts of all men is to love the members of society as themselves.-Roman


"Seven hundred and fifty tons of white paper are used daily in New York City alone. That means that some 3,500 acres of forest are cut down each day to print the newspapers, magazines and periodicals that are sent broadcast every hour during the 24, says the Paper Trade Journal. And this is but a small percentage of the total consumption in the United States.

"With one city among a nation of 90,000,000 or more, requiring the stripping of 3,500 acres, how long can we expect the supply to last? -Exchange


Dr. Albert T. Clay, professor of Semitic philology and archeology at the University of Pennsylvania, says, "After receiving all the light that has been thrown on the pages of the Old Testament by the spades of the excavators and tedious deciphering, we can say that almost every page of the old Book has been verified, and we can feel certain it is reliable."


These volumes deserve a careful study by all who are not thoroughly satisfied with the Bible interpretations of the "dark ages." They can be bought for a trifle, or borrowed free. Address us.

Respecting the first volume of this work "The Atlanta Constitution" says editorially:

"This wonderful book makes no assertions that are not well sustained by the Scriptures. It is built up, stone by stone, and upon every stone is the text, and it becomes a pyramid of God's love and mercy and wisdom. There is nothing in the Bible that the author denies or doubts, but there are many texts that he throws a flood of light upon that seems to uncover its meaning."


This article can be found in its entirety in Newspaper Sermons, entitled, "Most Comforting Words, Words of Life."


This article can be found in its entirety in the Newspaper Sermons, entitled, "What it Costs to be a True Christian."