St. Paul Enterprise, December 10, 1915


Kingdom Of Messiah Is At The Threshold, Reign Of Evil To End

December 5 Pastor Russell gave a masterful address today from the text, "What hath God wrought!" (Num. 23:23) He said in part:

We are living in a most wonderful period of the world's history. On every side are contrivances for man's blessing. Evidently the time is near when all the world may enjoy such assuagement of hardship, such release from excess of toil, and such blessings and comforts as mankind has never before conceived. Yet these things have come upon us so gradually, so stealthily, as it were, that we scarcely realize what progress has been made.

As the Bible foretold twenty-five hundred years ago, so it is true, that all these blessings and comforts have come in "The Time of the End." (Dan. 12:4) As Bible students we find that this term, "The Time of the End," applies to a period that began with the year 1799 A D ; and so for more than a century we have been living in "The Time of the End." Within this time many wonders have come to mankind. Once we thought that this "Time of the End" meant the end of the world, as all of the creeds of Christendom declare. But that is not the thought of the Bible when rightly understood.

The Time of the End is the end of this present Age. It is the end of the long reign of Sin and Death. We are now coming into a New Era, in which all these evil conditions which have oppressed man for six thousand years are to terminate. Soon the great Sabbath of rest, the Golden Age of blessing long sung by prophet and bard, will be ushered in. Indeed, it has already been ushered in, in some respects.

While these blessings are designed to be for all mankind, they have in a natural way gravitated into the hands of a certain few, because of man's ingrained selfishness. This has caused more or less of pride on the one hand, and of jealousy on the other. This is now about to precipitate a fearful conflict. Already we see a great conflict of nations along commercial lines, each endeavoring to get the lion's share of the blessings which the Lord has provided in these latter days. They have become jealous and envious of one another as they see the opportunities of wealth and power opening up before them. This awful war now raging across the sea has resulted, costing millions of money and of lives. [HGL774] How broad and how noble in contrast is the view which the Bible holds out to us; namely, that God has made loving and bountiful provision for His blessing to reach all the families of the earth yea, every individual! And the time is now about ripe. How glad this knowledge makes our hearts! We whose eyes of understanding have been anointed to see are greatly blessed in that we are privileged to be ministers of God, to tell of all His mercies and favors planned for mankind. God has permitted us, as members of the Body of Christ, to be co-workers with Him in the proclamation of His Truth. Then, when glorified with our Redeemer, we shall share with Him in the great work of bringing blessing to the whole world. It is a blessed thought, an inspiring thought, a comforting thought, one that lifts us far above the present strife and ambitions of the world.


While considering all these blessings which surround us, and noting what imperfect man has been able to attain even under present conditions by the blessing of God, let us not lose sight of the fact that these things did not come by man's ingenuity. Let us take note that men just as brainy, just as brilliant, have lived in the past. Where is there a man today who can pen such words of wisdom as the proverbs of Solomon? What poet today can produce the equal of the Psalms of David, the sweet singer of Israel? Let us remember, too, that though Shakespeare lived centuries ago, he remains unsurpassed in his line by any writer of our time.

Let us assure ourselves that we are not the brainiest people who have ever lived, that the blessings of our day have not come to us because we are of superior brain capacity to those of past generations. They are here because this is God's "due time". He is now letting in the light of the dawning New Dispensation. That God has done all this is the firm belief of careful Bible students. And I believe that you all agree with this sentiment.

Behind this thought is another. When I consider what mankind have done in their imperfect condition, I reflect, "What will man do when he is made perfect in the image of God, under the Messianic Kingdom?" Then my mind turns to our great Creator Himself; and I say, "If feeble creatures that God has made can accomplish so much, can produce such wonderful things, even in their fallen estate, who can measure the power of the Almighty God of Him who is perfect in Wisdom perfect in Power, perfect in Justice and perfect in Love? How thankful we are to get this broad, comprehensive view of our God, and to see that He is not only great and powerful, but wise and infinitely loving as well!"


So as I ponder over what man has done, and what God has done and has planned to do, the words of the Prophet David come to mind: "The heavens declare the glory of God, and firmament showeth His handiwork." (Psa. 19:1) All that mankind have done or ever will do will merely be copying the infinitely greater skill manifested by our great Creator in His works. As we note the stars revolving in their orbits, we are amazed, not only at the mighty power that can swing these wonderful systems of worlds, but at the wisdom and ability displayed in preserving their perfect order.

But when we consider what God hath wrought in connection with humanity we are still more astonished. Think of the human body. This great piece of machinery has power to oil itself, to feed itself, to manipulate itself, to will for itself, to think for itself, and to direct its own course. If mankind could make such a machine they would have something of which to be proud. But the best that we can do is to copy feebly the works of our Creator and to work in harmony with His laws. When we realize that all the machinery and the inventions of our day are but imperfect copies of what God has done that man is only using principles which God has employed in the past, to the extent that he is able to understand them we see the more clearly that man was made an earthly image of the Heavenly Creator.


Yet some who are inventors or who have talents of one kind or another may be very deficient in such grand characteristics as justice or love. We are coming to look upon these qualities as the ones most desirable to cultivate; and by the grace of God we are seeking to develop these qualities more and more. As the work of transformation progresses in our hearts and lives, we see more clearly what a great blessing will come to the world when these principles of Divine justice and love will operate everywhere.

We look across the water to our neighbors in Europe; and we say to ourselves, "Alas, that they do not have sufficient appreciation of justice to be willing to observe the Golden Rule to do unto others as they would have others do to them!" Selfishness is behind such a spirit as they manifest. One declares, "We will have our share of trade!" Another replies, "You shall never get it if we can keep you from it, if we have battleships enough to take the trade from you!" And so the cruel war goes on, to show which can the more successfully exercise their selfishness to the disadvantage of the other.

Let us ask, "Is this copying God's ways?" Let us take the nobler, higher standard of Divine justice, and do to our neighbors as we would wish them to do to us. Let us promote this principle wherever we go. Let us make known the character of God wherever we have an opportunity, by showing forth His justice, His sympathy, His kindness. Let this character be manifested in our own lives. As children of God, let us be burning and shining lights, to the glory of our Father in Heaven.


While realizing God's great Wisdom and Power as manifested in nature, we have been seriously handicapped by false doctrines which grossly misrepresent our Creator and show Him as a God devoid of justice and of love. It seems a wonder that we were not all turned aside from Him. Not one of the human family is totally depraved; yet we have had pictured to us a totally depraved God. This misconception of the Heavenly Father we got from the Dark Ages. Thank God, the New Age now at the threshold is bringing blessings not merely of a temporal kind! It is scattering the ignorance and superstition of the past, and is bringing in the light of the knowledge of the glory of God, which is ultimately to fill the whole earth. Isa. 11:9; Hab. 2:14 [HGL775] We are beginning to see the light; for we are awake. But to see clearly we must look in the right direction. There are people today who are quite awake, but they are looking toward the west for the sunrise. We see great college professors, learned men who have given their lives to study and who have knowledge on many subjects, making the mistake of thinking that Evolution is our God; that a microbe started to squirm and has been evolving upward gradually, until our race has reached the station which it occupies today. They do not see an intelligent God in this matter. Their misconception is that Evolution is man's only hope. They say that ultimately there will be "the survival of the fittest."

Think of the present conditions in Europe! There the fittest are the ones who are falling in the trenches and on the battlefields. The unfit the old, the weak, the crippled and incompetent are left at home to propagate and rear the families of the future. That is the science of Evolution, the philosophy which hopes that in millions of years hence mankind may have learned how to cook and to eat so that they will not need to die, and that thus they may have everlasting life. Evolutionists believe that this may be true of their posterity somewhere in the dim, distant future. They do not stop to think that at the present rate of increase in population the world would be vastly overcrowded before that time, that the coal and oil fields would be exhausted, and that a limit would be reached in other directions that things cannot continue as at present for any great length of time.

But the Bible points out that man's extremity will be God's opportunity. After permitting mankind to have all these blessings of our day, He will allow them to dash themselves to pieces in a great cataclysm of trouble, and make shipwreck of all this boasted twentieth century civilization. Before the complete destruction of mankind, however, the Kingdoms of Messiah, God's dear Son, will intervene and will speak peace to the nations. After the terrible storm there will be a great calm. Christ will take to Himself His great power and establish His glorious Reign.


According to the Bible, God has for nineteen hundred years been selecting from every nation, people, kindred and tongue the Church of Christ, a class which He is about to exalt in the eyes of the whole people. He will use this class for the blessing of the world, for the enlightening and the uplifting of all mankind. Thank God for this truth! I trust that by the grace of God many whom this discourse shall reach may be of this jewel class, those who will fully submit themselves to the hand of the great Creator. May He work in us and upon us and through us, to the great blessing of ourselves now, as well as to the future blessing of all the families of the earth!

Through testings, through trials, through the opposition of the world, the flesh and the Devil, our God is shaping, polishing, preparing this class for their future great work of human uplift. All these things of the present time, which would naturally work to our disadvantage in many ways, the Lord will overrule to our spiritual development. He has promised that all things shall work together for good to these, the called ones according to His purpose, who are making their calling and election sure. (Rom. 8:28) How we rejoice in the precious promises that all of life's experiences shall thus be caused to work for our blessing!


I remind you of the creation of God thus far. First was the Logos, our Lord Jesus in His pre-human condition. As the great Agent of Jehovah, He created all things. As we read, "All things were made by Him, and without Him was not anything made that was made." (John 1:1-3, 10; Rev. 3:14; Col. 1:15) The Power was of God, exercised through the glorious Word, the Logos. (1 Cor. 8:6) God's final creation was man. Then sin blighted this fair creation. For a time God allowed it to remain as sin has marred it. But in due time, according to God's pre-arranged Plan, Jesus came into the world to be the Savior of men, He took upon Himself human nature. As a man He gave Himself a Ransom for Adam, and thus for the race that fell in Adam's loins. The price was laid down, even the precious blood of the Son of God. 1 Cor. 15:21, 22; Rom. 5:12, 18, 19; 1 Tim. 2:5, 6

But before the time for the blessing of the world, the Father had a further feature of His great Plan the making of a New Creation, different from angels, cherubim, seraphim or any other creature. From amongst the fallen sinner race He invited a class redeemed them by the precious blood of Christ, to become members of this New Creation, and thus joint-heirs with Jesus Christ their Lord. God is working in these New Creatures. Who are they? You are one, if you are a member of the Body of Christ. If you have given yourself wholly to the Lord under His terms, you are one of the jewels which He is preparing, polishing and perfecting for future glory. Mal. 3:16-18; Isa. 62:3

When this New Creation is completed, they will be the Channel which God will use for the restoration of all mankind. Because of their own experiences with evil, and because they have learned how to overcome weakness and imperfections in themselves, they have learned how to overcome weakness and imperfections in themselves, they will be well fitted for encouraging, instruction and uplifting the human family to the perfection which God designs for them, and which Adam originally enjoyed. They will be able to deal sympathetically with the poor world. This blessing will go not only to the living, but to those also who have gone down into the tomb. All these will be awakened. God will not awaken them now, because it would be to their disadvantage. He will keep them in the sleep of death until the Kingdom of Righteousness is thoroughly established. Then they will come forth to learn of God's infinite goodness, and to receive His salvation; whosoever will, at the hands of the New Creation.

Beyond this, God gives no further revelation. We are merely informed that at the conclusion of Christ's Millennial Kingdom, when all the willing shall have been made perfect, and when all the willfully wicked shall have been destroyed, Christ will turn over the Kingdom to the Father, "that God may be all in all." (1 Cor. 15:28) But through the Apostle Paul God has given us a glimpse of that infinite future. (Eph. 2:7) Seeing, then, all these present foregleams of coming glory, let us consider these present blessings as finger-posts, directing us to the glorious outcome of Jehovah's marvelous Plan of the Ages, as declared in His Holy Word.

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