The Bible Students Monthly Volume 9, Number 5


The greatest crisis of all the ages is upon the world, and the worst phase of it has not yet been reached. The situation demands sober reflection.

All Europe is afire, and the flames have spread to America! Within less than three years, thirty millions of men have faced each other upon the battlefields of Europe, and approximately seven millions of them have already fallen victims to the murderous war. The wanton destruction of human life and treasure has staggered humanity. The neutral nations are suffering, and the peoples of the countries at war are enduring untold hardships. Countless widow and orphans bemoan the untimely fate of their loved ones, and now face famine and pestilence enemies even more cruel and relentless than cannon or sword. Even in America the conditions in many places are becoming intolerable; the people are restless, and many women and children are frantically crying for bread. The conditions prevailing are leading on to certain revolution and anarchy, the like of which the world has never before known.

The Twentieth Century opened with the brightest prospects of all times. The Clergy told us there could be no more war. Why, then, has this horrible war come upon the world? Has it come because of the love of the people for blood-shedding? We answer, No! for the common people did not desire the war. Is the war, then, the result of unrighteousness, and unholy conditions prevailing in Christendom? And, if so, who is the more to blame the kings and rulers or the clergy? In the Bible alone we have the clear and conclusive answer. Foreknowing the course of men and nations, Jehovah, through His Prophet, more than three thousand years ago, said: "Why do the nations war, and the people imagine vain schemes?" Here the word "scheme" means plan or arrangement, looking to the accomplishment of a given purpose.


The entire race came under the condemnation of death as a result of Adam's disobedience. Since Adam was driven from Eden man has vainly sought life everlasting, a happy home and a government of equity and righteousness. God has a great Scheme, or Plan, to give these very things to man, and is causing it to be worked out in His own due time.

When Jesus came to earth this Scheme, or Plan, for the first time was presented by Him and the Apostles, as outlined in the Scriptures. Briefly, it is this:

That the wages of sin is death not eternal torture;

That redemption and forgiveness of sins come through the sacrificial merit of Jesus, the acceptance of which is the only way to life, happiness of home and other righteous desires;

That it was necessary for Jesus to die and to arise from the dead to provide the Purchase-Price for man's redemption;

That Jesus, as a Divine being would come a second time, to establish His Kingdom;

That during the period from His First Coming to His Second Coming He would gather out from the world the members of His Body, called the Church, regardless of creed or denomination;

That His Kingdom could not be established until His Second Coming;

That His Kingdom is not of "this present evil world," or order of things;

That all of His followers should pray, "Thy Kingdom come," and keep themselves separate and distinct from worldly schemes;

That all Christians who faithfully follow the Master are His ambassadors, and their duty is to declare the Message of His Kingdom and the blessings it will bring to all mankind.


The lawyer who deceives his client, suppresses the truth concerning the case, and causes him to lose his property, is properly denounced as a fraud. The ambassador of a nation who

suppresses the truth concerning his government, or delivers its secrets to another government, is justly labeled a traitor and is prosecuted for treason.

The highest office that any man can hold on this earth is that of an honest preacher of the Gospel. It is equally true that the disloyal and unfaithful minister who suppresses the Truth and leads the people into darkness is the most reprehensible of all wrong-doers. There are good lawyers and bad lawyers, and there are good preachers and bad preachers. Any preacher who objects to an examination and discussion of his teachings places himself in the category of bad ones, because his attitude proves that his teachings will not bear the light.

Every man who has assumed to be a minister of the Gospel has thereby assumed the office of ambassador of the Lord Jesus Christ and His Kingdom. The solemn duty then devolves upon him to lead the people in the right way, according to the teachings of the great Master.

There have been and there are yet some good, faithful preachers; but alas, the great majority of them have been and [HGL37] are disloyal to the Lord and His cause and have suppressed the Truth and led the people into darkness!

The fixed laws of Jehovah cannot be violated with impunity, either by individuals or by nations. The Apostles were faithful teachers of the Message of Messiah's Kingdom. Many Christians who followed them likewise faithfully taught the Truth. Early in the Fourth Century, ambitious men, claiming to be teachers of the Bible and ambassadors of Christ, put aside the Plan of God and began to teach their own schemes, contrary to God's arrangement. Christian people of this day, whether Catholic or Protestant, are in no wise responsible for the schemes, or plans, of men promulgated centuries ago, when first the Catholic and later the Protestant churches were organized. But every fair-minded person should examine these schemes, or plans, with a view to seeing whether or not they are in harmony with God; and, if not, to consider what relation they bear to the great trouble that is now upon the world.

The Clergy, as distinguished from the laity, or common people, were organized about the year 325. In 529 the Clergy System, claiming to be the Church, assumed temporal power, organized armies and went forth to fight and destroy those who dared resist their unrighteous schemes. They deprived the common people of the Bible, issued their own statements of belief, or creeds, and required the people to believe and follow these. Briefly stated, the scheme, or plan, put forth by the Clergy of that day and followed since is:

That the wages of sin is not death, but purgatory or eternal torture; that the Clergy have power to forgive sins and to pray men out of purgatory, which they pretend to do for a money consideration; that the Pope rules as the Vicegerent of Christ, and therefore Christ's Kingdom, or Government, has long been in operation in the earth; that the kings rule by Divine right, and that this right to rule is derived from the clergy, as the representatives of the Lord; that the province of the Church, composed of the clergy, is to convert all the world to believe in their doctrines.


In the year 1517, Protestantism had its birth. For a time the Protestant Church sought to reform and to teach the Bible, as best its teachers understood; but later the Protestant clergy began to mix religion and politics, and the kings of Europe were taught by them, as well as by the Catholic hierarchy, that they held their thrones by Divine right and that the Clergy were the proper spiritual advisors of the kings of earth. Every kingdom of Europe has its national religion, and those kingdoms among whom the name of Christ is held, are designated as "Christendom," which, in short, means Christ's Kingdom.

The Clergy, both Catholic and Protestant, have taught the kings of earth that they rule by Divine right and hence can do no wrong. Long ago it was incorporated in the common law of England, "The king can do no wrong." Every student of Blackstone will recall reading this statement when he began to study law. It seemed strange that a man could do no wrong but the explanation has been, and is, that the king, ruling by Divine Right, and deriving this right through the clergy, is the Lord's representative, and therefore all his acts are right.

Relying upon the advice of their spiritual advisers, the kings have reasoned thus: We must extend our territory and increase our commerce, and to accomplish this we must have great armies and navies. War may be necessary, and much property may be destroyed and many of our subjects lose their lives; but our course is right, because our spiritual advisers have told us so. The rulers, therefore, forced the people to bear the burden of taxation to provide navies and armies, and then sent their respective subjects forth to kill each other in a Christian (?) manner.

As these have gone to war, the clergy have stood by the kings and said, in substance, "Push on your war of destruction; God is with you, and we will pray His blessings upon your army." In Germany the Clergy pray God that He will bless their armies and enable them to destroy the English; in Great Britain the clergymen pray God for a blessing upon the British armies, that they may be enabled to wipe the Germans off the face of the earth. Which class of the clergy does He hear?

The clergy have urged the young men to enter this war; and in order that other generations might be born to fight and die, they have called upon the young men to first marry and beget children before going to the battle-field, offering to perform the marriage ceremony free of charge. To perform any service free is an unusual thing for preachers. What a moral degeneracy has come upon the nations at the advice of the clergy! Notwithstanding the fact that the Lord has taught that no murderer shall enter His Kingdom, the clergy teach that he who dies while engaged in war upon the battle-field has an abundant entrance into Heaven. As an example of this, the public press reports a recent discourse by Dr. Gordon, the leading clergyman of Canada, in which he said in substance:

"The uniform of King George upon a soldier boy is a sure passport to Heaven, and God Himself cannot keep a young man out of Heaven who dies with this uniform upon him."

And yet that clergyman claims to be an ambassador of the Prince of Peace!

For a long time, claiming to teach the Bible, and posing as preachers of the Gospel, which men so sorely need for their comfort, the great majority of the modern clergymen have departed therefrom, and now hold to and teach doctrines utterly subversive of the Bible. For the past quarter of a century a great tidal wave of infidelity has swept over the so-called "Christian world" not the blasphemous atheism advocated by Ingersoll and Payne, but an infidelity of a more subtle character, represented in the scholarship of the modern clergymen, generally known as "Higher Criticism" and "Evolution." The teaching of such doctrines has destroyed faith in the inspiration of the Bible as God's Word of Truth, and has turned the people away from the teachings of Jesus and the Apostles. Our colleges and universities are hotbeds of such dangerous brands of infidelity, and its blighting influence has permeated our public schools.


The Protestantism of our day is not the result of the great Reformation, but of its decline and failure. It is merely the "ism" without the "protest." [HGL38] The Apostle Paul points out that the statements of prophecy set forth in the Old Testament would have a special application and fulfillment at the close of the Gospel Age. We are now in that time. The word "prophet" means preacher, or one who proclaims; whereas it is the word "seer" that represents those who predict things to come. Concerning those who suppress the Truth, teaching faith-destroying doctrines and thereby ensnaring the people, the Lord has said: "Among My (professed) people are found wicked men; they lie in wait as he who sets a snare; they set a trap (Higher Criticism, Evolution and other worldly theories destructive of faith in the Bible) to catch men; they are waxen fat; they shine (modern clergymen claim to be rich in wisdom and need no teaching, and they love to shine before men); they pass by the deeds of the wicked (they approve the wrongful acts of kings and rulers against the interests of the common people and keep silent respecting the sins of their wealthy and influential members). Shall I not visit them for these things? saith the Lord. Shall not My soul be avenged on such a nation as this? A wonderful and horrible thing is committed in the land. The prophets (preachers) preach falsely, and the priests bear rule by their means, and the people love to have it so." Jer. 5:26-29

Thus the Lord fearfully arraigns those who suppress the Truth and by their selfish schemes ensnare men in their doctrines, contrary to God's way. The Lord points out that if these professed ambassadors of Christ had been faithful in teaching His Word of Truth the present great and horrible war would have been averted. Jer. 23:19-22


Of course, there are exceptions to the rule, and there are some good, honest clergymen in the world. But alas, the majority of them, we fear, belong to the other class! The Scriptures point out that both the kings and the clergy are responsible for this war, but that the clergy are even more reprehensible, because it was their duty to know God's Plan and to tell it to the people. But they have refused to learn it and failed to tell it to others.

Concerning the responsibility for this war, Rabbi Wise, of New York City, recently said:

"The failure of the churches and synagogues to maintain leadership over the people was the cause of the present war. They have enthroned a war devil in place of God. They are satisfied to be a mere item of social organization and to defend their countries and rulers, just or unjust."

Rev. Dr. Peter Ainslie, Pastor of the Christian Temple at Baltimore, recently said in a public sermon:

"More than to any other source the cause of the great war lies at the door of the Church."


So numerous are the schemes of men that they are bewildering and confusing. God has named these unrighteous, ecclesiastical schemes "Babylon," which means confusion; and He refers to the Catholic system as the "Mother of Harlots." The other ecclesiastical systems sprang from her, and are, therefore, the daughters referred to by the Revelator. Rev. 17:1-6

The Book of Revelation is written largely in symbols. "Wine" is a symbol of doctrine; "fornication," a symbol of illicit relationship between church and politics. The Lord, speaking through the Revelator, says: "Babylon the Great is fallen, is fallen (fallen from God's favor), and is become the habitation of devils (those possessing a devilish spirit), and the hold of every foul spirit (impure principle), and the cage of every hateful and unclean bird (nearly every "jail-bird" is a member of some nominal church system). For all the nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication; and all the kings have committed fornication with her; and the merchants of earth have waxen rich through the abundance of her delicacies."

Clearly this prophetic statement has been fulfilled by the illicit mixing of religion and politics in the name of Christ by those who claim to be His ambassadors, and the whole arrangement is an abomination in the sight of the Lord. Continuing, He says: "For her sins have reached unto Heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities; therefore shall her plagues come in one day death and mourning and famine; and she shall be utterly burned with fire (symbol of destruction); for strong is the Lord God who judgeth her." Rev. 18:18


Foreknowing the course that men would take, the Lord foretold the present great conflict through the Prophet Joel more than 2500 years ago, as follows: "Prepare war; wake up the mighty men; let all the men of war draw nigh; let them come up! Beat your plowshares into swords and your pruning-hooks into spears; let the weak say, I am strong! Assemble yourselves and come, all ye nations, and gather yourselves round about; thither cause thy mighty ones to come down. Let the nations be wakened and come to the Valley of Jehoshaphat (the valley of graves the literal valley of Jehoshaphat outside of Jerusalem being the burial ground of the Jews, picturing the burying grounds of the armies engaged in the world-war). . . The sun and the moon shall be darkened and the stars shall withdraw their shining." Joel 3:9-15.

The Scriptures point out that the "sun" symbolizes the Gospel of Christ's Kingdom; that the "moon" represents the Mosaic Law; and that the stars are symbols of ecclesiastical teachers. Thus we see that at the time the world-conflict has come the Gospel of Messiah's Kingdom is darkened in the nominal churches. No longer do the clergy teach the coming of Messiah's Kingdom to bless all the families of the earth. No longer do they tell the people that the Mosaic Law foreshadowed the development of this great Kingdom. And they, as the "stars," have fallen from their exalted position in the spiritual heavens as teachers of the Divine Word, and have allied themselves with the common politics of the world.


The word "world," as used symbolically in the Scriptures, means Dispensation, or period of time. The time of Gentile dominion has been, according to the Scriptures, a period of 2520 years. The Bible clearly points out, and this is corroborated by secular history, that the Gentile Times began with the overthrow of the Jewish king, Zedekiah, and the enthronement of Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon, in the autumn season, 606 years before Christ. It follows, then, that the full [HGL39] period of 2520 years would expire in the autumn of 1914. Referring to this time the great Master said, "And the nations were angry, and Thy wrath is come." Exactly on time, when the Gentile dominion legally ended, the nations were angry, and God's wrath upon the nations expressed itself in permitting them to begin the destruction of one another. Our Lord Jesus, in His great prophecy concerning the end of this present age, or world, pointed out that the beginning of this trouble would be when "nation shall rise against nation and kingdom against kingdom," and that it would end with "a Time of Trouble such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be." The Prophet Daniel gives similar testimony. Matt. 24:21; Dan. 12:1

It is a well-known fact that the clergymen speak of their congregations as their "flock," and of themselves as "watchmen." A true watchman of the flock should be highly commended; but the Lord said of those who are of the contrary spirit: "What has thou to do to declare My statutes, or that thou shouldest take My Covenant into thy mouth, seeing thou hatest instruction and castest My words behind thee? When thou sawest a thief (Satan, stealing the hearts and minds of the people away from God's Plan), then thou consentest with him, and hast been partaker with adulterers. Thou givest thy mouth to evil and thy tongue frameth deceit." (Psa. 50:17-19.) Again, says the Prophet Isaiah: "His watchmen are blind; they are all ignorant; they are all dumb dogs (D Ds.); they cannot bark sleeping, lying down, loving to slumber. Yea, they are greedy dogs, which can never have enough, and they are shepherds that cannot understand; they all look to their own way, every one for his gain from his quarter (denomination)." Isa. 56:10, 11

Summing up the situation, we see that the Gentile Times have ended, that the kings of earth have had their day. God gave them an opportunity to make good, and they have failed. He is now putting them out of possession of earthly dominion. Sin and selfishness have predominated. The kings and rulers, being ill-advised by their spiritual counselors, have come to a sorry end. Soon revolution will be upon the world, terminating in anarchy, which will completely overthrow all the Babylonish systems ecclesiastical and political.


But let us leave the dark picture for a moment. The Apostle Peter, after describing this trouble time, says: "Nevertheless, we, according to His promise, look for a new heavens (spiritual ruling powers) and a new earth (earthly government, order of society), wherein dwelleth righteousness." The promise here referred to is that Promise made by Jehovah to Abraham, saying, "In thy Seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed." The Seed of Abraham must first be brought forth before the blessings can come. That Seed is Christ Jesus the Head, and the Church His Body. Gal. 3:16, 27-29

During the entire Gospel Age God has been gathering out from the world those who would constitute this Body who would become truly consecrated Christians. Some of these have been clergymen; some have been members of church denominations; others not. The true test has been full faith in Jesus as the great Redeemer in His sacrificial death as man's great Redemption price; then complete consecration to do God's holy will, and faithful obedience thereafter even unto death. All who are of this class are promised a share in the Chief Resurrection and that they shall reign with Christ to bless all the families of the earth. Rev. 20:6

The Scriptures abound with promises that a righteous Government is to be established in the earth, and that such Government shall rest upon the shoulders of the Great Messiah (Isa. 9:6); that He shall then be called "Wonderful," "Counselor," "the Everlasting Father," "the Prince of Peace." Under His Reign wars shall cease, and wickedness and crime shall be completely obliterated from the human race. Every man who loves peace and righteousness shall then sit under his own "vine and fig-tree," he will have his own peaceful habitation, where he may dwell with his loved ones in happiness.

Our Lord Jesus Himself promised that during His Reign all who are in the tomb shall come forth and that all shall have a fair and impartial trial for life. The Scriptures abound with promises that there shall be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and the unjust. (John 5:28, 29, R V ;Acts 24:15; 17:31) When Christ reigns, though Himself invisible to man, He will, through His visible representative on the earth, establish a Government of equity and justice, bringing the desire of every honest heart.

At the end of the thousand years Reign of Christ, the entire earth will have been brought to a state of Edenic Paradise (Isa. 35; Eze. 36:34-36), and all the incorrigible, the willfully wicked, shall have been forever destroyed. All others shall have been completely restored to that perfect condition enjoyed by Father Adam in the Garden of Eden. Then Christ will turn over the Kingdom to the Father, and all will be given a final test. Those who then shall prove their loyalty to God and the principles of righteousness will be granted everlasting life; those who fail will suffer everlasting destruction. God will then have a clean Universe.

"Lift up, lift up thy voice with singing! O earth, with strength lift up thy voice! God's Kingdom to the earth is coming; The King is at the gates rejoice!"

.. . [HGL40]

Section 3

Selections from Peoples' Pulpit, Old Theology Quarterly, Everybody's Paper

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