page 77
April 15th
ZION'S
WATCH TOWER
and
Herald of Christ's Presence

ROCK OF AGES
Other foundation can
no man lay
A RANSOM FOR ALL

"Watchman, What of the Night?"
"The Morning Cometh, and a Night also!" Isaiah 21:11

VOL. XVI.APRIL 1, 1895.No. 7.
CONTENTS

Special Items – Allegheny Meetings 78
Serving the Emblems 78
Views from the Tower – 79
Religious Views 79
The Social View 81
Theologians Becoming Rationalists 81
How are the Mighty Fallen 83
Bible Study: Our Lord's Typical Triumph 85
Bible Study: The Wicked Husbandmen 86
Bible Study: Watchfulness 87

'I will stand upon my watch, and set my foot upon the Tower, and will watch to see what He shall say unto me, and what answer I shall make to them that oppose me.' Hab. 2:1

Upon the earth distress of nations with perplexity: the sea and the waves (the restless, discontented) roaring: men's hearts failing them for fear and for looking forward to the things coming upon the earth (society): for the powers of the heavens (ecclestiasticism) shall be shaken. . . .When ye see these things come to pass, then know that the Kingdom of God is nigh at hand. Look up, lift up your heads, rejoice, for your redemption draweth nigh. – Luke 21:25-28, 32.

page 78

THIS JOURNAL AND ITS MISSION.
T
HIS journal is set for the defence of the only true foundation of the Christian's hope now being so generally repudiated, – Redemption through the precious blood of "the man Christ Jesus who gave himself a ransom [a corresponding price, a substitute] for all." (1 Pet. 1:19; 1 Tim. 2:6.) Building up on this sure foundation the gold, silver and precious stones (1 Cor. 3:11-15; 2 Pet. 1:5-11) of the Word of God, its further mission is to – "Make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery which...has been hid in God,...to the intent that now might be made known by the Church the manifold wisdom of God" – "which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed." – Eph. 3:5-9,10.

It stands free from all parties, sects and creeds of men, while it seeks more and more to bring its every utterance into fullest subjection to the will of God in Christ, as expressed in the Holy Scriptures. It is thus free to declare boldly whatsoever the Lord hath spoken; – according to the divine wisdom granted unto us, to understand. Its attitude is not dogmatical, but confident; for we know whereof we affirm, treading with implicit faith upon the sure promises of God. It is held as a trust, to be used only in his service; hence our decisions relative to what may and what may not appear in its columns must be according to our judgment of his good pleasure, the teaching of his Word, for the upbuilding of his people in grace and knowledge. And we not only invite but urge our readers to prove all its utterances by the infallible Word to which reference is constantly made, to facilitate such testing.

TO US THE SCRIPTURES CLEARLY TEACH
That the Church is "the Temple of the Living God" – peculiarly "His
workmanship;" that its construction has been in progress throughout the Gospel age – ever since Christ became the world's Redeemer and the chief corner stone of this Temple, through which, when finished, God's blessings shall come "to all people," and they find access to him. – 1 Cor. 3:16,17; Eph. 2:20-22; Gen. 28:14; Gal. 3:29.
That meantime the chiseling, shaping and polishing, of consecrated believers
in Christ's atonement for sin, progresses; and when the last of these "living stones," "elect and precious," shall have been made ready, the great Master Workman will bring all together in the First Resurrection; and the Temple shall be filled with his glory, and be the meeting place between God and men throughout the Millennium. – Rev. 15:5-8.
That the Basis of Hope, for the Church and the World, lies in the fact that
"Jesus Christ, by the grace of God, tasted death for every man," "a ransom for all," and will be "the true light which lighteth every man that cometh into the world," "in due time." – Heb. 2:9; John 1:9; 1 Tim. 2:5,6.
That the Hope of the Church is that she may be like her Lord, "see him
as he is," be "partaker of the divine nature," and share his glory as his joint-heir. – 1 John 3:2; John 17:24; Rom. 8:17; 2 Pet. 1:4.
That the present mission of the Church is the perfecting of the saints for
the future work of service; to develop in herself every grace; to be God's witness to the world; and to prepare to be the kings and priests of the next age. – Eph. 4:12; Matt. 24:14; Rev. 1:6; 20:6.
That the hope for the World lies in the blessings of knowledge and opportunity
to be brought to by Christ's Millennial Kingdom – the restitution of all that was lost in Adam, to all the willing and obedient, at the hands of their Redeemer and his glorified Church. – Acts 3:19-21; Isa. 35.
CHARLES T. RUSSELL, Editor; MRS. C. T. RUSSELL, Associate.

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Those of the interested, who by reason of old age or accident, or other adversity are unable to pay for the TOWER will be supplied FREE, if they will send a Postal Card each December, stating their case and requesting the paper.

[R1793 : page 78]

THE MEMORIAL SUPPER.

Our advice that the little groups meet as usual for this celebration on the evening of April 7th (see last issue) and that there be not a deserting of the home meeting to attend larger gatherings, was not from any lack of cordiality toward all. Solitary ones, deprived of fellowship and meetings, who may find it convenient to meet and celebrate with us, will be very warmly welcomed.

SPECIAL HOURS FOR ALLEGHENY CHURCH SERVICES ON SUNDAY, APRIL 7TH.

BIBLE HOUSE CHAPEL, 58 ARCH ST.

Preaching service at 10.30 A.M. to be followed by a baptism service, and that by a German service.

At 7 P.M. a Prayer and Testimony meeting of which the central thought shall be the Apostle's words, "I determined not to know anything among you save Jesus Christ and him crucified." – 1 Cor. 2:2.

At 8 P.M., after explanatory remarks and prayer, the Memorials of our Lord's body and blood will be served.

The afternoon is recommended to be used for personal and private meditation upon the great transactions which closed our Lord's ministry, and led up to the all-important finishing event, his death, by which our ransom was secured. And let us not neglect to make it a time of self-examination, as well as of communion with our Lord in the spirit of prayer. "Watch and pray, lest ye enter into temptation," said our Master on this occasion; and experience has repeatedly proved that at this season every year God permits Satan to specially sift the wheat. (Luke 22:31,32.) Let us not only avail ourselves of the great Mediator's aid (Heb. 7:25), but also seek to be so filled with his spirit that in the sifting we may be able to come off conquerors, through him that loved us and bought us with his own precious blood.

In coming to the evening meeting we suggest that each seek to continue the meditation and avoid general conversation.

All who trust in the precious blood of Calvary, and who are fully consecrated to the Lord, will be cordially welcome.

AS TO SERVING THE MEMORIAL EMBLEMS.

A Brother writes, inquiring for an appropriate order of service in connection with the celebration of the Memorial Supper, and, as the subject may be of interest to many, we publish a portion of our reply, as follows: –

After opening the meeting, let as competent a one as is present give a little talk upon the import of the ordinance and then on the emblems, beginning with the bread and what it symbolizes – informally, and just as lengthily or briefly as circumstances indicate, endeavoring to set forth the real meaning of what is done. Follow with the remark that the Lord, in instituting the Memorial, first gave thanks; then either return thanks yourself or ask some one else present to do so. Then follow with some such expression as the following, – After having eaten the Passover Supper, the typical lamb, our Lord "took bread, and blessed it, and break it, and gave to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body." Suiting the action to the word, break a piece of the bread (preferably "unleavened bread" purchased from Hebrews, or else soda-biscuits, which are unleavened), and hand it to those who will serve it, or serve it yourself, according to the size of the company.

It is generally well, we think, to have a little interim of silence for meditation – a few moments. Then let some one give thanks for that which the cup emblemizes. Then say, "And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; for this is the blood of the New Covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins." (We advise, as preferable, either grape juice or a mixture of the latter with a very little wine and sugar, – so little that the flavor of the alcohol cannot be detected – as a safeguard for any who may have had in the past a craving for liquors.) After passing this emblem, again leave a little space for silent reflection, and then say: It is written, "And when they had sung an hymn, they went out." Let us do likewise, – in thought following the course of the Lord during that eventful night in the Garden of Gethsemane, the prayer with the disciples and admonishing them to watch and pray, the betrayal, arrest, trial, crucifixion, etc.

Sometimes it may be found profitable, instead of speaking, to read from the WATCH TOWER – Mar. '91, page 36; March 15, '95, page 71.

[R1790 : page 79]

VIEWS FROM THE TOWER.

RELIGIOUS VIEWS.

EVEN in this day of rapid changes on every subject the changes on religious subjects constantly cause surprise. The secular press properly recounts as sensations the novel methods by which so-called ministers of the gospel and ambassadors for Christ are seeking to draw men after themselves by "tickling" their itching ears. One clergyman recently preached a bicycle gospel and illustrated it by using a bicycle in the pulpit. Another introduced a quotation from one of Shakespeare's plays and acted the part of Richard III. by falling as if dead upon the pulpit platform, as do theatrical professionals. Another has startled and almost magnetized, not only his congregation, but also the worldly of his city by declaring that dancing, card-playing, billiards and theater-going are not only not great sins, but positively virtues to be pursued as elements of Christian happiness. He said, "The Bible does not say that men and women are not to enjoy to the full the pleasures of the world. They are intended for the Christian." "Satan...in all his craftiness comes to us and says, 'If you become a follower of Christ, you must give up these pleasures' – to keep lovers of pleasure from joining churches." This Presbyterian minister wanted to build up a large membership, a healthy looking church from the worldly point of view, and was letting down the bars to get more goats into the flock. Indeed, we may presume that the goats already so outnumbered the sheep that the few true sheep of Christ were oddities – "peculiar people," and that nice goats had become the standard with this shepherd. Such conduct and teaching draws some, but will arouse and repel others; – those of whom the Great Teacher said, "My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me....And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him; for they know not the voice of strangers." – John 10:27,5.

The true sheep hear the shepherd's voice, saying, "If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me." "Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him." "As many as are led by the spirit of God, they are the sons of God." "Now the just shall live by faith [not according to the course of this world, but contrary to it]; but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him." "Whatsoever is begotten of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith." "All that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution." "Men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. [At this] rejoice and be exceeding glad; for great is your reward in heaven." "Strait is the gate and narrow is the way which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it." – 2 Tim. 3:12; Matt. 5:11,12; 7:14; 16:24; 1 John 2:15; Rom. 8:14; Heb. 10:38,39; 1 John 5:4.

The Lord's course is said to be an example for his true followers, who are exhorted to follow him, to "follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth and to "walk in his footsteps, as he hath set us an example." How much of his time was spent in self-indulgent pleasure-seeking, in attending theatricals, playing billiards, etc.? Only so much as we find in his life, are we to copy. But so surely as being a true Christian means anything, it means to walk not according to the course of this world, but to be renewed by the transforming of our minds to the good, acceptable and perfect will of God, illustrated in the Lord Jesus Christ, – so surely as it means self-sacrifice and full consecration to the Lord, it means also the avoidance of even foolish talking [R1790 : page 80] and jesting, and the laying aside of all weights and hindrances which would impede us in our race for the prize set before us in the gospel. – Eph. 5:4; Heb. 12:1.

Another well meaning but much mistaken man, Bishop Fallows, has started what he terms the first "Home Saloon," in Chicago. In it he sells imitation beer, flavored like the genuine with hops, but devoid of alcohol. To make it as much as possible like a regular "devil trap" is his aim; so it supplies free lunch, billiard tables, games and cigars, and adds, we believe, hot coffee.

Two ministers in New York City (Rev. Drs. Rainsford and Rylance) have gone still farther, and on March 14th addressed a mass meeting favoring the permitting of saloon-keepers to open their saloons on Sundays – before and after the usual morning church service hour.

What is the meaning of all this? There is but one answer. It is – False doctrine; a false conception of the true situation, and a consequent fumbling in the dark. The teaching of the Lord and the Apostles, that the object of the gospel is to select or elect a "little flock" of saints, who, when tried and made white, will, with their Lord and Redeemer, constitute the "holy nation" and heavenly Kingdom, which, during the Millennium, as the promised "seed of Abraham" (Gal. 3:16,29) and "royal priesthood," shall bless all the families of the earth with the clear knowledge of the truth, and grant to all the world the trial for life made possible by Christ's redemptive sacrifice – this gospel has been lost to sight; and, instead, the view is held (contrary to all the evidences), that all men are now on trial for eternal life or death.

With such wrong views, no wonder ministers leave off attempting the "perfecting of the saints for the [present and [R1791 : page 80] future] work of ministry" (Eph. 4:12), and instead try to clean up the world, the flesh and the devil a bit. To these, the preaching of a "narrow way" that few find seems inconsistent, because they have imbibed the erroneous idea that all who do not find the "narrow way" will never find any way to life. They do not see that after the experiences of the present "narrow way" of this Gospel age of the Church's trial has sifted and separated from among men, and polished and prepared through self-denial the heirs of glory who are to be joint-heirs with Jesus Christ their Lord – then will come the world's trial under more favorable conditions, but for a lesser glory and honor; that then, instead of the present narrow way, the grand highway of Isaiah's prophecy (Isa. 35:8) will be opened up, on which every facility will be offered to every member of the redeemed race to accept the New Covenant and under its gracious provisions have life everlasting.

*                         *                         *

On Sunday, March 3, Cardinal Gibbons preached a discourse on the Bible, in which he complimented it as the book above all others and the treasury of the heavenly science. He commended it to all Roman Catholics, clergy and laity alike. Our object in mentioning this is to point out the great change of policy in the Church of Rome on this subject. We say policy, not principle, for the principles of that institution never change, though its policy is always adapted to its own evil ends with a shrewd reference to circumstances and conditions. It is only a few years since Roman Catholics, by the Council of Baltimore, were given permission to read the Bible. It is only about twenty-two years since Bibles were openly burned by priestly orders in Spain, and only a little while, a couple of centuries, since men and women were by them hunted to death and burned at the stake for having and reading that Book of books which the Cardinal now commends.

We would be glad to think that real reform is taking place, and that Roman Catholics are learning to love that which once they hated and persecuted; but the light of history forbids such a conclusion. The experiences of past centuries should and do teach us that Rome's conduct has always been marked out by policy. And so we believe it is now; she is working another policy for her own aggrandizement.

What will she gain, and what could she lose, by outwardly making friends with the Bible?

She may gain much; she expects to lose nothing. She sees the trend of Protestant teachings toward "higher criticism" – infidelity. She knows from experience that the masses of the people are conservative, and will by and by shrink back from so ultra a position; – and meantime she is favoring Christian union, adopting the Bible, etc., and when the time shall come, which will be soon, for a revulsion of sentiment, she expects that the masses of Protestants will recognize her as the one safe hiding-place.

Besides, she may well reason that, if Methodists, Presbyterians and others can read the Bible, and yet each hold as firmly as ever to his sectarianism, so can and will Roman Catholics cleave to the traditions of their system, no matter what they find in the Bible when they read it. Alas! how true the reasoning, how safe the power of priestcraft, and how little likely it is to lose its hold upon the laity!

*                         *                         *

Here is an illustration of another class of Protestants. While the "great teachers" are becoming "higher criticism" infidels, and those of the laity who will think for themselves are becoming skeptical, another class, calling themselves "Holiness people," are discarding the Bible in another way, – claiming that their own minds are superior guides without the divine revelation. Note the following extract from the Galt Daily Reformer:

"Simcoe, Canada, March 8. – The 16th annual convention of the Canada Holiness Association convened yesterday afternoon. The convention was opened by singing and prayer by the president, Rev. N. Burns, B.A., of Toronto. Mr. Burns in his remarks alluded to the distinctive mission of the Association, which was to teach and practice that each individual could know from God what is truth for himself, personally, independent of tradition, or even the Bible. Vice-President Dickenson and Mrs. Truax spoke along similar lines."

Alas! how evidently the great enemy is leading God's professed people captive, some in one direction and some [R1791 : page 81] in another; some blinded in one way and some in another. "When the Son of Man cometh shall he find the faith on the earth?" Only with a "remnant," as in the end of the Jewish age.

*                         *                         *

The following cablegram explains itself: –

"London, March 23. – The interview between Viscount Halifax, President of the English Church Union, and the Pope yesterday is regarded in Roman Catholic circles here as really of great importance and significant of the enormous strides the Catholic Church has made recently in England. In a recent cable letter The Dispatch correspondent noted the number of English clergy who have taken orders in the Roman Church during the last two years. The mere fact of Lord Halifax's visit would have raised a storm in the English Church a few years ago, but it hardly excites comment in to-day's newspapers.

"The Church Union has in its membership 3,000 of the Anglican clergy and 30 bishops. Lord Halifax is reported as asking the Pope to send 'a tender and gracious message to the Anglicans in the forthcoming encyclical.' On what ground and with what purpose is not explained."

In a fourteen-column article in the Church Times, Lord Halifax recently advocated church re-union. He expressed the opinion that –

"The Pope desires nothing so much as to take the first steps for the reunion of the Church, and by means of a reunited Christendom to find the solution for the political, social, and religious difficulties of the time. Surely, it is our duty to do our utmost to further such wishes. Surely there was never a period in the history of Christendom when there was a more favorable opportunity for the realization of such desires."

THE SOCIAL VIEW.

The announcement of the Czar of Russia, that he will uphold aristocracy as ardently as did his father, greatly disappointed the hopes of those who looked for him to favor Republican institutions in Russia. However, he is showing his interest in the general welfare by arrangements for compulsory education and free schools.

*                         *                         *

"Speaking recently at a banquet, the Pope's delegate, Mgr. Satolli, concluded by saying that the opinion was certainly growing that we were nearing a most critical point in history, and that in this country, especially, great problems would soon demand positive solution. All the horrors of a social revolution were predicted by men as renowned for accurate and calm thinking as Prof. Goldwin Smith and Prof. VonHolst. The Apostolic Delegate held, with a recent magazine writer, that the Catholic Church alone held the true solution of the terrible problem, which lies on the threshold of the twentieth century, and that it belongs to the Pope alone to pronounce a social pax vobiscum."

*                         *                         *

"General Booth, of the Salvation Army, a close observer of men and things, expressed himself as follows to a reporter of the Toronto News, when asked respecting a prophecy made by him since his arrival in Canada to the effect that the 19th century would close with greater horrors than did the preceding century: –

"Any one who knows the world and society, and hears the rumblings of discontent, if he is not blind, can easily see and forecast serious results. The masses are dissatisfied, and they are determined that their wrongs shall be righted. They have been gaining power to this end for many years by extending the franchise, and unless Governments, and those who control affairs, can bring about harmonious relations amongst all classes, there will be an outburst such as the world has never known."

*                         *                         *

All men are coming to see what our readers have for fifteen years been viewing from the Watch Tower of Zion through the telescope of God's Word. And now, as showing men the futility of hope in their own efforts for the relief needed, the world is witnessing the general disintegration of labor unions. A labor paper, the Chicago Dispatch, says:

"The labor union is rent by internal dissensions and bickerings, and unless the hard feeling engendered during the past six months is eradicated the hopes of the workingmen in the battles to be fought this spring are small indeed. ...Ninety-nine per cent of the quarrels and splits in the labor movement are caused by the failure of ambitious men, totally incompetent to be elected to office. These, with the assistance of the disorganizers, have been doing their work well."

The effect will be a general discouragement for a time, in which hope will be smothered; until finally, the pressure becoming too general, as well as too heavy, the explosion and disruption mentioned by General Booth and the Pope, but long ago predicted by the Lord, will come to pass. – Dan. 12:1; Jas. 5:1-4; Zeph. 3:8,9; Matt. 24:21,22.

[R1792 : page 81]

THEOLOGIANS BECOMING RATIONALISTS.

DR. Lyman Abbott's paper in a recent issue says: –

"One of the most significant signs of the times is the change of attitude among scientists toward religious questions. Those who keep pace with scientific thought, and are familiar with the atmosphere and spirit of scientific investigation in the universities abroad, have been struck by the radical change which has taken place in the last twenty years. What now strikes one in the attitude and spirit of a great many scientific men is a spirit of reverence toward the religious side of life."

While we agree that it is a fact, that the leading scientists and the leading theologians have come into closer sympathy of thought within the last twenty years, we account for this in a totally different manner. We hold that it is the theologians, and not the scientists, that have changed their base and made warfare between the two no longer reasonable.

If these theories of Professors Darwin and Huxley have been changed within the last twenty years, we know nothing of the changes. But who is not aware that all the [R1792 : page 82] theologically great (Isa. 29:14) have surrendered to the Darwinian theory, that man was not created in God's image, but had apes for his parents, and is merely one or two evolutionary steps in advance of them? Who is not aware that as fast as Darwin's theory of evolution took hold, it displaced the Bible theory of a fall of mankind into sin and death, and substituted the reverse theory – that man never fell at all, but has been coming grandly upward out of the bad condition in which his ape parents started him, to his present development; and that death, so far from being the penalty of Adamic sin, is really another grand step in evolution into a still higher condition than manhood?

Who does not know that Rev. Henry Ward Beecher, Dr. Abbott's predecessor in Plymouth church pulpit, was one of the first theologians to surrender to science, and that he publicly said to his congregation, "If Adam fell at all, he fell upward; and if you believe that legend of the Garden of Eden, the eating of an apple, original sin, etc., you have no farther use for my preaching?" Who does not recall Mr. Beecher's public recognition of Robert Ingersoll about the same time?

Who is so blind that he cannot see that the leading theologians have not only rejected the Bible account and accepted the deductions of science, falsely so-called, respecting the origin of man, but that many of the foremost of them, Mr. Abbott among them, have endorsed the so-called "higher criticism" views of Professors Briggs, Smith, Harper and others, which are substantially the views of Paine and Voltaire respecting the Bible – that it is not of divine origin or authority, and that the utterances of its writers are to be generally rejected, although a good thought may here and there be gleaned from the rubbish by the aid of these professors, so very wise and almost infallible in their own eyes?

And yet, knowing all this, one of these gentlemen tells us, as above, that a radical change has taken place in scientific circles, in their attitude toward religion. No wonder that a change has taken place! It would be strange indeed if the scientists would keep up the fight after they have captured their opponents; – and more, after those once opponents have become their strongest allies, astounding them continually with their vigorous attacks on the Bible from the inside, – while still drawing their salaries and holding their titles as Doctors of Divinity. Verily, while the trusted Doctors are administering poison to the trusting patients on the inside, the outside assailants can afford to keep quiet.

In evidence that Dr. Abbott's views have changed, we quote from a Religious Dictionary edited by him and published exactly twenty years ago – in 1875. Therein he says,

"We think that science confirms at every point the great religious teaching of the first chapter of Genesis." – Page 233.

But the first chapter of Genesis declares not only that God purposed to make man in his own image, but also adds, "So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him." Dr. Abbott now rejects this, the greatest religious teaching of Genesis 1, claims that man was not created in God's likeness, did not fall from it and hence needed not to be redeemed nor restored to it; but that, evolved from an ape and in much of the ape's likeness, man has been going up to manhood grandly for six thousand years.

We might here remark that it is because what is true respecting Dr. Abbott's surrender to Infidelity is true also of nearly all prominent ministers in the pulpits of Christendom, that we think worth while to point out these matters so particularly. The poor "sheep" under guidance of such blind guides are following to the ditch of unbelief, as surely as did a similar class, warned by our Lord, at his first advent. – Matt. 15:14.

In further evidence that the change has been on the part of the theologians and not on the part of the scientists, we quote again from Dr. Abbott's book, published just twenty years ago (page 792), as follows: –

"The doctrine of Redemption is embodied in the promise with which the angel of the Lord accompanied his prophecy of the birth of Christ: 'Thou shalt call his name Jesus; for he shall save his people from their sins.' The doctrine of redemption, then, is that the human race have come into bondage to sin and sinful habits and propensities, and at the same time under just condemnation of God's law, because of them [See Rom. 5:12]; and that God has sent his Son into the world, not only by his death to atone for their past sins, so that they may be freely forgiven for the past, but also by his present power as a risen Savior, spiritually dwelling in the hearts of his people, to deliver them from the power of sin, and enable them to become followers of him in their lives and conformed to him in their character."

How beautifully and simply the above quotation expresses the truth upon this subject! – man's sin, his just condemnation, the atonement by the death of our Lord as a ransom-sacrifice, the forgiveness and reconciliation thus effected, and the new life in his people fashioned after his as a copy. Alas! that one who so clearly saw the truth should so greatly change in twenty years as to say, as he did on Sunday, March 3rd, as reported in the New York Times:

"I mean what I say, It was not by his death that Christ saved the world, but by laying down his life for the world. Passion week began when he was baptized."

Here Dr. Abbott distinctly denies the value of our Lord's death as the basis of reconciliation between God and the sinful, fallen race, and claims that it was the three and a half years of our Lord's ministry, his conduct and teaching (and not his death as man's ransom) that saves the world. The Evolution theory led him to this position. Having rejected the doctrine that man was created in God's image and that the race in Adam fell from it into sin and just condemnation, and having accepted the theory that all men have been advancing from apehood toward God's likeness by evolution, he would be compelled by the force of logic to deny that Christ's death redeemed anything or [R1792 : page 83] atoned for anything; for if the present development of our race is progressive, and according to divine arrangement, the race has no sin to be atoned for or forgiven. But Dr. Abbott and his hearers were not yet ready to cast the Word entirely aside, so he proceeds to endeavor to show that our Lord's work for the race "was not by his DEATH" as a propitiation [satisfaction] for our sins, as the just for the unjust, but by his consecrated living, during the three and a half years following his baptism. We have already pointed out that, as in the case of the Church each consecrated one is reckoned as beginning the sacrifice from the time that he consecrates himself even unto death, so with our Lord and Redeemer, his sacrifice, which ended at Calvary, was begun at his consecration at baptism.* But the entire plan of redemption would have been a failure, and our race would have remained "strangers and foreigners" to God, sinners, – "without God and having no hope" had not his death sealed the New Covenant.

But that Dr. Abbott totally rejects the value of the ransom-price, Christ's death, and holds that merely the good words and deeds of our Lord were all that was needed and all that benefited men, and that his death at Calvary was of no redeeming value, but merely an evidence of his devotion, is clearly shown by other statements, as follows:

"The crucifixion was rendered necessary by the fear and hate of men....If the world had been willing to take Him and follow, the world might have been saved without a drop of blood or a throb of anguish."

It was with these words that this wandering star in the ecclesiastical heavens led a large congregation of professing Christians to the celebration of the Lord's Supper. Because his mind had been poisoned by "science, falsely so-called," and perverted from the simplicity of the doctrines of Christ, "as the serpent beguiled Eve," this once able man becomes a sophist who deludes his flock, so that when they read, "Without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sins," and again, "This is my blood of the New Covenant, shed for many for the remission of sins," they will, under his instruction, conclude the very reverse to be the truth, that his death was not necessary either for the forgiveness of their sins or their reconciliation to God, but merely their acceptance of and obedience to his pattern life.

Every child of God who has gotten awake to the present situation should lift up his voice like a trumpet and call the attention of all the true sheep to the misleading of their blinded shepherds. Tell them that the true Shepherd is calling, "Gather my saints together unto me – those that have made a covenant with me by sacrifice."

[R1793 : page 83]

HOW ARE THE MIGHTY FALLEN!

WE clip the following, from the New York Times. It is no doubt a faithful report of recent utterances of Dr. Lyman Abbott in the famous Plymouth Church pulpit. How sad to see that a man once so able a defender of the Scriptures and so well informed respecting them is now so blinded as to make the serious misstatements shown below. We discuss the subject because these are general errors into which Christendom as a whole is rushing, blindly following such leaders. We quote: –

"Traditional theology supposed that God made man perfect; but what is meant by perfect, traditional theology does not disclose. The idea of man being created perfect has been carried to such an extent that I know of an instance in which a Methodist minister in Connecticut stated to his congregation that so great was Adam's perfection that he had a knowledge of the telegraph.

"Adam, although perfect from the point of view of traditional theology, fell when he was tempted with an apple, a temptation which even a schoolboy is able to resist.

"Evolution takes a very different view of man and holds that he is the result of a slower process in which his lower physical and his lower moral attributes and conditions have been lifted up to their present higher conditions.

"The doctrine of the fall of man from a state of perfection is not to be found in the Bible outside of the third chapter of Genesis. Christ never refers to Adam's fall. John, Peter, Matthew, Jude and the others never do. St. Paul does so only once, and then mentions it incidentally to illustrate only.

"It is generally asserted and believed that sin came through Adam. It is as universal as humanity, and, therefore, grace came.

"I am not a believer in the perfect man of traditional theology. I am a believer in evolution, and I tell you frankly, that I do not believe in the third chapter of Genesis. I consider it to be a legend of the early writers, which some early poet took up, like the Arthurian legends were taken up, and worked into it a sort of spiritual life, and that as such it has come down to us.

"When Paul came to portray the drama of sin, he had nothing to say about Adam on original sin."

The Lord truly declared through the Prophet (Isa. 29:14), "The wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be hid." The most ignorant member of Mr. Abbott's congregation would not probably have blundered into so foolish and untruthful a statement respecting the teachings of the Scriptures.

Let us search the Scriptures. Let us see whether or not our Lord, Peter, Matthew, John, Jude and Paul knew nothing and wrote nothing concerning the fall of Adam, and "never refer" to it, except St. Paul "only once," and then to "illustrate only."

Mr. Abbott says, "only once," as though he thought that his audience ought to forgive St. Paul for lying just once, as he did it "to illustrate only." But if St. Paul's plain teachings belied the facts just once, for illustration or other purpose, it would be sufficient to shake and break all confidence [R1793 : page 84] in him as one of those twelve Apostles inspired and infallibly guided in all of their doctrinal utterances by the Holy Spirit, so that we might be sure that in building upon their testimony, we were building upon the foundations of faith which God himself had established. – See Rev. 21:14; Matt. 18:18; Eph. 2:19-22.

OUR LORD AND HIS HOLY PROPHETS AND APOSTLES DID PREACH THE FALL.

First of all we remark that the doctrine of the fall of man in Adam did not require statement, as if it were a new doctrine; for the Jews already believed it, having been instructed therein by Moses and the prophets, whose writings were read "in the synagogues every sabbath day." (Acts 15:21; 13:27.) The fact that our Lord endorsed the teachings of Moses without exception, and declared that not one jot or tittle of the Law could pass away unfulfilled, was quite sufficient endorsement by him of all that Moses wrote in the third chapter of Genesis, as well as in all the other chapters of the Pentateuch. The doctrine that Adam had sinned and fallen from divine favor and that all mankind as his offspring shared naturally in Adam's curse, and, as a result, had all been "born in sin and shapen in iniquity" was the very essence of Jewish belief upon and into which [R1794 : page 84] were fitted the various typical sacrifices for sins, atonements and washings from uncleanness.

The Prophet David acknowledges the perfection in which man was created, saying, "Thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honor; thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands." (Psa. 8:4-6.) He acknowledges also the fall, saying, "Behold I was shapen in iniquity and in sin did my mother conceive me." (Psa. 51:5.) Having the same view of the fall, Job asks, "Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean?" – Job 14:4.

Solomon the wise declares, "Lo, this only have I found, that God hath made man upright; but they have sought out many inventions." – Eccles. 7:29.

All the promises of a new heavens and earth, – of a time when the wilderness shall blossom as the rose and the knowledge of God fill the earth, and his favor be offered through Christ to all who will go up on the highway of holiness, are but so many promises of Eden and Paradise to be restored, and were so understood by the Jews, and so spoken of by our Lord and the apostles, and so symbolically pictured in Revelation. – Rev. 2:7.

Our Lord distinctly declares that he came "to seek and to recover that which was lost." Thus he teaches man's original harmony with God and his loss of life and of God's fellowship; and that his own mission was to restore the original conditions. He declares also that he came to give his life a ransom [lutron anti – a price in offset] for all. This is another declaration of man's original perfection, and of his fall into sin and its penalty, death, and of his need of a ransom therefrom. Because if man's life were not under divine sentence, it could not be ransomed or bought back; and if under divine sentence, the implication is that at some time in the past man had been tried; and if tried, that trial implies a condition fit for trial, – a condition of capability for obedience, – the very perfection and trial and fall recounted in Genesis.

The Apostle Peter teaches the fall when he says, "Ye were redeemed...with the precious blood of Christ." He taught the same thing in unmistakable language when, in his discourse at Pentecost, he spoke of the "times of restitution." Restitution means to put back as before. If there had been no fall from perfection, and if Peter and the people who heard him had not so believed, he would not have mentioned restitution (Acts 3:19-21) as a part of the gospel hope which he was commissioned by the holy spirit to preach. We may be sure that if under the inspiration of the holy spirit the Apostle Peter had the Evolution view of Dr. Abbott, Prof. Drummond, et al. (that man was created about on a par with the monkey), he never would have mentioned restitution as a glorious hope to be anticipated as part of the Millennial blessing. Would Dr. Abbott preach restitution? Did he ever preach from these words of Peter as a text? We presume not. It would fit very poorly with his theory; for if the past six thousand years have been spent in lifting man up from an apelike condition to intelligence, restitution would mean the undoing of it all, and a return to ape-like-ness; – and not to the God-like-ness in which the Scriptures declare that man was created, from which he fell, to which he has been redeemed, and to which, if he will, he is to be restored. And yet, astounding fact! the Apostle Peter declares not only that he believes in restitution, but that God has spoken of it; not only once, but "by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began." (Acts 3:19-21.) No wonder, then, in view of so general instruction by God for so long, that the people knew of the fall so thoroughly that it was unnecessary for our Lord or the apostles to make it a special subject of discourse, although all of their utterances were in harmony with it and implied it.

Dr. Abbott is willing to concede that the inspired Apostle Paul mentions the fall "only once," and he seems willing to forgive that once because it was "to illustrate only." If Dr. Abbott would not use bald untruths to illustrate his discourses, why offer such an excuse for St. Paul?

But if mention of the fall be an error, Dr. Abbott will have to forgive St. Paul more than once. If mistaken at all on this point, St. Paul, as well as the others, was much mistaken; for, as we will show, he mentioned the matter several times. Note the following instances and ask yourself whether it was natural or mental blindness (Isa. 29:11,14) that hindered Dr. Abbott from seeing any but one of these. We wonder which one of the many he saw: –

"Through the offense of one many be dead." – Rom. 5:15.

"Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was [first] in the transgression." – 1 Tim. 2:14.

"The serpent beguiled Eve through his subtlety." – 2 Cor. 11:3. [R1794 : page 85]

"By one man sin entered into the world, and death by [as a result of] sin, and so death passed upon all." – Rom. 5:12; 1 John 2:2.

"By one that sinned." – Rom. 5:16.

"As all in Adam die." – 1 Cor. 15:22.

"By one man's offense death reigned by one." – Rom. 5:17.

"By the offense of one judgment came upon all." – Rom. 5:18.

"By one man's disobedience many were made sinners." – Rom. 5:19.

St. Paul referred to the fall every time he mentioned justification, or the ransom-sacrifice by which we are reckonedly justified; as, for instance, when he said, "I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received [first of all], how that Christ died for OUR SINS, according to the Scriptures." – 1 Cor. 15:3; Jude 3.

With the testimony of St. Paul, of St. Peter, of our Lord Jesus and of "all the holy prophets since the world began," corroborating the account of Genesis 3, we advise Doctor Abbott, and all who have determined to reject God's revelation on the subject and to adopt instead human speculation and philosophy and "science falsely so-called," that they would better cut loose from the Bible entirely. Their claim of allegiance is injurious to the Book and to the Lord's cause in general, and is very discreditable to themselves, their honesty, etc., leading them to make such untruthful statements as the one we quote at the head of this article.

But so far from falling from the esteem of men, Dr. Abbott is being lionized by the ministers and school-men of all denominations. Amongst the speakers at a banquet of the "Methodist Social Union" on Feb. 1, at the St. Denis Hotel, New York City, Dr. Abbott's name was first in the announcement. This only indicates how general among the worldly-wise is the falling from grace now in progress – denying the fall of man and consequently the redemption from the fall by the precious blood of Christ. But we are assured that some things highly esteemed among men are an abomination unto the Lord; and surely this is one of them. – Luke 16:15; Heb. 10:29.

We are here reminded of our Lord's words, – "When the Son of Man cometh, shall he find the faith on the earth?" (Luke 18:8.) Evidently not to any great extent. "Let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall." – Psa. 91.

"In God I have found a retreat,
Where I can securely abide;
No refuge no rest so complete,
And here I intend to reside.

"A thousand may fall at my side,
Ten thousand at my right hand;
Above me his wings are spread wide,
Beneath them in safety I stand."

"His truth is my buckler and shield;
His love he hath set upon me;
His name in my heart he hath sealed;"
E'en now his salvation I see."

[R1794 : page 85]

OUR LORD'S TYPICAL TRIUMPH.

– APRIL 7, MATT. 21:1-17; LUKE 19:29-48; JOHN 12:12-19; MARK 11:1-11. –

Golden Text – "Hosanna: blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord."
T
HE lessons of this quarter carry our minds step by step through the painful scenes attending the last days of our Lord's life in the flesh, ending with his crucifixion, and then introduce us to the risen Lord, mighty to save, having the keys of death and the grave. In the course of the last quarter we saw his rising popularity with the masses of the people, attracted by his miracles and astonished and fascinated by his teachings; and, with them, we have marvelled at the gracious words that proceeded out of his mouth, and have hung upon his words, and our hearts have burned within us while the spirit of God has applied to us also the balm of his counsel. And now as we mentally proceed with him through the last few days of his human life, let its solemn scenes bring our hearts into yet closer fellowship and sympathy with that wealth of love and tenderness which so freely sacrificed all things for our sakes. [R1795 : page 85]

Three and a half years of public teaching and works which testified to the truth of his claims as the Messiah, ending with the raising of Lazarus from the dead, culminated in a seeming triumph which raised high the hopes of his disciples and of many in Israel that now their king, their Messiah, had indeed come and that the glory of Israel foretold by the prophets was soon to be realized. In this state of the public mind the Lord saw his opportunity to fulfil the prophecy of Zech. 9:9, by publicly essaying to assume the kingly office. And not only were the circumstances thus propitious, as foretold, but the time had come.

According to God's covenant with their fathers (Acts 3:25,26), the gospel of the Kingdom was to be to the Jew first. Yet God knew beforehand that, as a nation, they would neither appreciate nor accept it, and by his Prophet foretold that only a remnant of the nation would prove worthy of the covenant favor, and that the rest would be blinded (as they were by their prejudices and hardness of heart), while the great covenant blessing would be accepted and realized by some from among the Gentiles, who should be accounted the seed of Abraham to whom pertain the promises, – children not according to the flesh, but according to the spirit, having the faith of Abraham; for, as Jesus said, God was able of the very stones to raise up children unto Abraham. – See Rom. 9:27; Isa. 10:22,23; Rom. 11:7,11,12; Acts 13:46; Gal. 3:9,16,28,29; Matt. 3:8,9.

It was on account of this covenant of God with their fathers that Jesus, instructed by these and other prophecies, offered himself thus to fleshly Israel as their King, although he knew that, while the masses would give him a royal welcome and hail him with hosannas, their unstable and fickle minds, swayed by their false teachers and unwilling to act upon their convictions in the face of opposition, would, only a few days later, cry, Crucify him! crucify him! – John 12:1,12,13; 19:6,7,14,15.

Why then, is it asked, did Jesus go through this form of assuming kingly authority when he knew how it would [R1795 : page 86] result? We answer that, according to the teachings of the Apostle, this action was performed as a part of that great system of types which foreshadowed good things to come.

This triumphal entry into Jerusalem, together with its chronological order, prefigured the coming of Christ as king, in the end of this Gospel age, which is the antitype of the Jewish age, the two being exact parallels in both time and circumstances.* According to this remarkable parallelism we find the year 1878 A.D. to be the point of time in this age when the king, our risen Lord, was due actually to take his great power and begin his reign.

*See MILLENNIAL DAWN, VOL. II., Chap. vii.

That such is the accomplished fact we have no hesitancy in stating. We have ample proof from the sure word of prophecy+ that the time is at hand for the setting up of the Kingdom of God in the earth under the dominion of his Anointed – the Church. Around this fact cluster truths of deepest moment, not only to Christians, but to the whole world, if they were only wise enough to hear and heed.

+See MILLENNIAL DAWN, VOLS. II. and III.

Many are blinded to the fact of the Lord's presence, so clearly indicated in the Scriptures, by their misapprehension of the manner of his coming. Expecting to see him in the flesh, and his coming to be announced by the blast of a literal trumpet and visible to the natural eye in the literal clouds, they are unable to see, to recognize, him as having come and as now present, not in the flesh, but a spirit-being, invisible to the natural eye, yet clearly attested to the eye of faith by the sure word of prophecy, and to discern his presence and power in the midst of the clouds of trouble now so rapidly casting their dark shadows over the whole world. Nevertheless, these are facts, and of most solemn import, especially to all that name the name of Christ. You that are faithful they bid to "look up, and lift up your heads; for your deliverance draweth nigh" (Luke 21:28); while you, professed Christians who have grown lukewarm and indifferent, and you that are of the world seeking to satisfy your soul's cravings with the husks of worldly pleasure, all unmindful too of the cries of the oppressed and the woes of the suffering, you they bid beware of "a time of trouble such as never was since there was a nation" – a trouble even now imminent. – Dan. 12:1.

The authoritative course of the Lord upon this occasion, in overthrowing the tables of the money-changers in the temple (Matt. 21:12,13), saying, "It is written, My house shall be called the house of prayer, but ye have made it a den of thieves," as a typical act, indicates what is elsewhere also stated, that in the end of this age judgment begins with the professed house of God (1 Pet. 4:17), and his great displeasure against those who make merchandise of the truth.

Then followed the healing of the lame and the blind who came to him in the temple (Matt. 21:14), showing how the spiritually lame and blind in the church here may also be blessed by his healing touch. – Rev. 3:18,19.

And when the chief priests (Matt. 21:15,16; Luke 19:40) expressed their displeasure against those who glorified the new king (as the chief priests – the clergy – do to-day against those whose blindness and lameness the Lord has healed), Jesus said, "I tell you that if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out." Why? Because the Prophet Zechariah (9:9) had foretold the shouting and rejoicing, and now the time had come and the prophecy was sure to be fulfilled – "Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold thy King cometh unto thee," etc. So it was in the type then; and so it is in the antitype now. As truly and as necessarily as there was shouting and rejoicing there, so there is and must be now. Great is the joy now among the saints as they recognize the King; and their proclamation of his presence and Kingdom is the "shout," heard, if not believed. "Yea," said the Master, "have ye never read, Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings thou hast perfected praise?" Even so is it now also in this antitype of that day; for it is not from the chief priests, the clergy, of to-day that the hosannas rise in recognition of the King's presence and power here, but out of the mouths of the common people – "of babes and sucklings" are heard the notes of praise and jubilee – "Hosanna to the Son of David" who has come to reign, and who is even now setting up his Kingdom.

[R1795 : page 86]

THE WICKED HUSBANDMEN.

Golden Text – "They will reverence my son."
T
HIS parable was very promptly recognized by the Jews as spoken against them (Mark 12:12); and so aptly did it represent their state of heart that its only effect was to arouse them to renewed energy to fill up the iniquitous measure of their guilty fathers and so fulfil the final prediction of the parable. – Verse 13.

The foundation of the parable is the very similar language of the prophecy of Isaiah 5:1-7, which is explained thus – "For the vineyard of the Lord of hosts is the house of Israel, and the men of Judah his pleasant plant: and he looked for judgment, but behold oppression; for righteousness, but behold a cry." – Verse 7.

The parable, briefly interpreted, would read thus – "A certain man [God] planted a vineyard ["the house of Israel" – Isa. 5:7. See also Psa. 80:14,15; Jer. 2:21] and set a hedge about it [the divine law, the testimony of the prophets, the special supervision and fatherly guardianship of God and the ministration of his faithful servants, all of which served to separate them from the ungodly, surrounding nations, and to protect them from their influence], and digged a place for the winefat [or wine press, including the trough in which the grapes were pressed and the vat for the reception of the juice pressed from them. Thus God represents the various advantages conferred upon Israel, such as the worship of the sanctuary, the wonderful leadings of Jehovah, the teachings of the prophets, all of which should have caused the vine, Israel, to yield a large increase of precious fruit and caused her vats to overflow with wine. Well did the Lord inquire through his prophet, "What could have been done more to my vineyard that I have not done in it?" – Isa. 5:4], and built a tower [a watch tower for the protection of the vineyard – representing God's care over it in setting watchmen, the prophets and others, upon the towers of Zion – Ezek. 3:17; Isa. 62:6; Jer. 6:17], and let it out to husbandmen [the priests and leaders of the people, whose duty it was to instruct and to lead in the right ways of the Lord, which they were miserably failing to do], and went into a far country [left the vineyard thus prepared and equipped with every advantage to insure an abundant harvest, which he had a right to expect at the [R1795 : page 87] appointed harvest time, in which those addressed were then living]."

The fruits which the Lord had a right to expect from Israel in view of all his favors to them as a people were gratitude, love, obedience, meekness and readiness of mind [R1796 : page 87] and heart in the end of the age to follow the further leading into the new paths and the greener pastures of the Gospel dispensation, through the long promised and then present Messiah, the Son of God. These fruits, properly cultivated all through the age, would also have been manifested in a proper treatment of the prophets and in giving heed to their counsel and warnings; but the fruit was sadly lacking.

Verse 2. "And at the season [at such times as it was proper to expect some fruit] he sent to the husbandmen a servant [a prophet or teacher], that he might receive from the husbandmen [ – through their influence; for the rulers in Israel, because of their influence and power, were held specially responsible for the course of the nation, although this did not relieve the masses of the people, the individuals of the nation, from responsibility] of the fruit of the vineyard."

Verses 3-5 refer to the shameful handling of those worthy servants of the Lord. See also Jer. 37:13-21; 1 Kings 18:13; 22:24-27; 2 Kings 6:31; 2 Chron. 24:20,21; 36:16; Acts 7:52; Heb. 11:35-38.

Verse 6. "Having yet therefore one son, his well beloved [the Lord Jesus, who thus spake to them], he sent him also last unto them, saying, They will reverence my son." Though God knew it would be otherwise, it is so expressed to show the reasonableness of such expectation.

Verse 7. "But those husbandmen [the chief priests and rulers] said among themselves [they plotted privately and deceitfully, saying in substance], This is the heir [this man claims to be the king, the Messiah of the Jews]. Come let us kill him, and the inheritance shall be ours [the desire to retain their prestige and power was the very object of the leaders in Israel in persecuting and finally crucifying the Lord]."

Verse 8 was a prophecy of the murderous culmination of the wicked purposes that were even then filling their hearts.

Verse 9 foretells the purpose of God to cast those wicked husbandmen out of their offices and to give his favors to others than the Jewish nation; viz., the Gentiles.

Thus ended the parable with its awful significance of the triumph of evil; for full well the Lord knew that his days were numbered. But he did not wish to leave them with the idea that their triumph would be lasting, and so he called their attention to another prophecy (Psa. 118:22,23), saying, "Have ye not read this scripture? – The stone which the builders rejected is become the head of the corner: this was the Lord's doing and it is marvelous in our eyes."

This was said in reference to his triumph in the resurrection and his future glory as the king of the whole earth.

Verse 12 shows the wickedness of their hearts in strong contrast with that beauty of holiness which never more than on this occasion appeared more lovely. Not a selfish thought stirred his generous soul. Here was goodness, purity, benevolence, grace, standing on the verge of an awful tragedy, with calmness and composure doing the last works of his earthly life. He had no time for gloomy thoughts or fearful forebodings: he must be about the Father's business. He must give the last words of testimony, of instruction, of warning, and fulfil all that remained to be fulfilled of the prophecies concerning him in the flesh. Then he was ready to be offered for the sins of the world – for just such ungrateful, wicked people as the Jews had proven to be, even under all their advantages, and as the Gentiles also were without those advantages.

But, thank God, he shall yet see of the travail of his soul and be satisfied.

[R1796 : page 87]

WATCHFULNESS.

Golden Text – "Take ye heed, watch and pray."
N
EARLY nineteen centuries have passed since our Lord instructed his disciples to watch for his second coming, saying, "Watch therefore; for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come" (Matt. 24:42); and to make sure that the whole Church to the end of the age should feel this command incumbent upon them, he added, "And what I say unto you I say unto all, Watch!" – Mark 13:37.

Again he said, "Blessed are those servants whom the Lord when he cometh shall find watching: verily I say unto you, that he shall gird himself, and make them to sit down to meat, and will come forth and serve them. And if he shall come in the second watch, or come in the third watch, and find them so, blessed are those servants.... Be ye therefore ready also, for the Son of man cometh at an hour when ye think not. Let your loins be girded about and your lights burning." – Luke 12:35-40.

That the early Church lived in joyful anticipation of this longed-for event is manifest from many scriptures. (See 1 John 2:18; 2 Tim. 2:18; 2 Thes. 2:1-5.) And when the Apostle Paul had about finished his course, he looked forward to this event as the culmination of his own and the whole Church's hope, saying, "Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but to all them also that love his appearing." (2 Tim. 4:8.) To them the appearing of the Lord was the consummation of their hopes, and their one concern was to be found approved of him at his appearing.

But how is it to-day? Alas! professed Christians have generally forgotten to watch for his appearing. They seem to have concluded that the watching will never be rewarded, and that the time of his advent will never be revealed. Its object – the establishment of his Kingdom, the exaltation of the Church and the blessing of the world – has been overlooked and also nullified by erroneous doctrines which have been accepted and which have subverted the truth.

In this state of mind and under the delusions of various errors, they have concluded that it is wrong to study prophetic time with a view to a knowledge of the time of the Lord's return, and to this effect quote the Lord's words – "It is not for you to know the times or the seasons which the Father hath put in his own power." (Acts 1:7.) Yes, we reply, and he also said, "Of that day and hour knoweth no man; no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father." – Mark 13:32.

But is it reasonable to conclude that neither the Lord's people, nor the angels, nor yet the Son of God, would ever know the times and seasons of God's appointment? Certainly [R1796 : page 88] not. Because the time was long according to human reckoning, and a knowledge of it would therefore have been discouraging, it was wisely kept secret, not only from the Church, but also, and for the same reason, from angels and even from our Lord Jesus while in the flesh, and must continue so until the proximity of the event renders the knowledge of the time no longer a cause of discouragement, but, on the contrary, of the revival of hope and anticipation. The Lord surely knew about it after his resurrection when all power in heaven and in earth was given unto him – when there was in such knowledge no longer any cause of discouragement to him, the cross-bearing having ended and the glory begun. And it was to the intent that the Lord's people might know when God would see fit to reveal his times and seasons, that the waiting Church was told to watch.

The injunction to watch implies not only some advantage in watching, but also that the manner of the Lord's second advent might be so contrary to the general expectation as to require some discernment on the part of the watchers. The advantages of watching have been to keep fresh in mind the inspiring hope of the Church – the reunion with Christ in glory, the reign with him in his kingdom, and the privilege of cooperating with him in the blessing of all the families of earth, and to keep the heart in love and harmony with the Lord and his work. Thus, at his coming, the watchers would be found in readiness to sit down to meat and be served by the Lord, who himself would make known to them the secret of his presence. As at the first advent he was present some time before his presence was declared and recognized, so at his second advent his presence, which was due in 1874, only began to be recognized subsequently as he drew the attention of the watchers to it through the Word of truth.

It is the mistake of those laboring under the delusions of various popular errors, to think that they must watch for the appearance of the Lord again in the flesh, in the body of his humiliation, to see him descend from heaven in the literal clouds, and to hear the blast of a literal trumpet announcing his presence. But those who watch unto "the sure word of prophecy, which shineth as a light in a dark place," know that "though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we him [so] no more;" that the clouds in which he comes are the clouds of trouble predicted by the prophets (See Dan. 7:13,14; 12:1; Matt. 24:30; Rev. 1:7); and that the trumpet sound is the sound of "the last trump," "the trump of God," "the seventh trumpet," whose sounding is in the momentous events of this day of the Lord, just as the preceding six were sounded in other historic events; for if, as all admit, the first six trumpets were so sounded, why should we indulge the unreasonable idea that the seventh will be a blast on the air?* Those who have been watching thus unto [R1797 : page 88] the sure word of prophecy, and who have also been watching unto prayer and thus keeping their hearts in a humble teachable attitude, have been and are being made to sit down to meat at the Master's table, to realize his presence, and in his light to read with unclouded vision the wonderful working of the divine plan of the ages and to see the duties and privileges of the hour.

*For treatment of this subject see MILLENNIAL DAWN, VOL. II.

Verses 44-46 show who will meet the Master's approval in this day of his presence. They will be, not only those who believe in him, but who also manifest their faith and love in active service – "Blessed is that servant." It is not enough, however, that they be servants of the Lord; for many serve very actively whose works are to be burned in the fiery trials to which they shall be subjected in this day of the Lord (1 Cor. 3:12-15); but they must be wise and faithful servants – servants who study to show themselves approved unto God, rightly dividing the Word of truth, servants who are anxious, not only about the amount of their service, but also that it shall be in exact cooperation with God, directed by his Word and controlled by its principles, and then faithfully performed, with an eye single to his glory.

"Blessed is that servant whom his lord at his coming shall find so doing. Verily I say unto you that he will appoint him over all his possessions." The whole storehouse of divine truth shall be open to such to be ministered by them to others of the household of faith. This is the present reward of the wise and faithful servants in the time of his presence, and thus they begin to enter into the joy of their Lord now – the joy of being taken into full confidence with God, of comprehending his deep and wide designs and cooperating with them (Luke 12:37); but the fulness of their joy will be when they pass beyond the vail of the flesh and are made like him and see him as he is. – 1 John 3:2.

Verses 48,49 are a solemn warning to those who are thus blessed against a possible falling away from even such a favored condition. As long as we are in the flesh, we will have to war against its sinful proclivities. With the increase of knowledge pride may reassert itself or arrogate to self the honor of finding out God by searching, and, to a considerable extent losing sight of the great reward of faithfulness at the end of the present pathway of humiliation and sacrifice, seek to gratify present fleshly ambitions with the prestige gained by the knowledge of the truth. Such a one virtually says in his heart, "My Lord delayeth his coming" – the coming in the glory of his Kingdom, his personal presence being already recognized. That is the language of such conduct, whether it find expression in words or not; and then follow the unseemly acts to which pride, ambition and self-righteousness stimulate: – he begins to smite his fellow-servants (to act tyrannically over those who are faithful and, generally, because they are faithful), and to eat and drink with the drunken (to imbibe more and more of the spirit of the world, the spirit of selfishness, and to become intoxicated with it). Thus tyranny and selfishness go hand in hand, as in the notable instance of the inquisitions and indulgences in the Church of Rome. The only proper course for the Lord's* people at any time is to have "no confidence in the flesh," and to watch against its old ambitions under all circumstances, and to pray, lest we enter into temptation.

*See our issue of July 1, '94, page 217.

Verses 50,51. The penalty of falling away from such high privileges, and that in the face of a knowledge of the Lord's presence and the very near approach of his Kingdom and glory, is, as might well be surmised, a severe one – a penalty which such a one must shortly realize, when, in the overwhelming trouble that shall ere long put an end to all human ambitions, he comes to his sober senses and realizes that he has sold his birthright and is cut off from his former position in the body of Christ and appointed a portion with the hypocrites in the great tribulation with which this harvest period closes. God forbid that any of those at present rejoicing in the truth should thus fall away, now when the Kingdom and its glory are so near. Yet it behooves all to watch and pray lest we enter into temptation.

page 89
April 1st

ZION'S
WATCH TOWER
and
Herald of Christ's Presence

ROCK OF AGES
Other foundation can
no man lay
A RANSOM FOR ALL

"Watchman, What of the Night?"
"The Morning Cometh, and a Night also!" Isaiah 21:11

VOL. XVI.APRIL 15, 1895.No. 8.
CONTENTS.

Special Item – Being Reviled He Reviled Not Again 90
Views from the Tower – 91
The Drift of the Times 91
The Just Shall Live by Faith 92
God Not the Author of Sin 93
Bible Study: The Lord's Supper 94
Bible Study: The Agony in Gethsemane 95
Encouraging Letters 97
The Memorial Celebration 100

'I will stand upon my watch, and set my foot upon the Tower, and will watch to see what He shall say unto me, and what answer I shall make to them that oppose me.' Hab. 2:1

Upon the earth distress of nations with perplexity: the sea and the waves (the restless, discontented) roaring: men's hearts failing them for fear and for looking forward to the things coming upon the earth (society): for the powers of the heavens (ecclestiasticism) shall be shaken. . . .When ye see these things come to pass, then know that the Kingdom of God is nigh at hand. Look up, lift up your heads, rejoice, for your redemption draweth nigh. – Luke 21:25-28, 32.

page 90

THIS JOURNAL AND ITS MISSION.
T
HIS journal is set for the defence of the only true foundation of the Christian's hope now being so generally repudiated, – Redemption through the precious blood of "the man Christ Jesus who gave himself a ransom [a corresponding price, a substitute] for all." (1 Pet. 1:19; 1 Tim. 2:6.) Building up on this sure foundation the gold, silver and precious stones (1 Cor. 3:11-15; 2 Pet. 1:5-11) of the Word of God, its further mission is to – "Make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery which...has been hid in God,...to the intent that now might be made known by the Church the manifold wisdom of God" – "which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed." – Eph. 3:5-9,10.

It stands free from all parties, sects and creeds of men, while it seeks more and more to bring its every utterance into fullest subjection to the will of God in Christ, as expressed in the Holy Scriptures. It is thus free to declare boldly whatsoever the Lord hath spoken; – according to the divine wisdom granted unto us, to understand. Its attitude is not dogmatical, but confident; for we know whereof we affirm, treading with implicit faith upon the sure promises of God. It is held as a trust, to be used only in his service; hence our decisions relative to what may and what may not appear in its columns must be according to our judgment of his good pleasure, the teaching of his Word, for the upbuilding of his people in grace and knowledge. And we not only invite but urge our readers to prove all its utterances by the infallible Word to which reference is constantly made, to facilitate such testing.

TO US THE SCRIPTURES CLEARLY TEACH
That the Church is "the Temple of the Living God" – peculiarly "His
workmanship;" that its construction has been in progress throughout the Gospel age – ever since Christ became the world's Redeemer and the chief corner stone of this Temple, through which, when finished, God's blessings shall come "to all people," and they find access to him. – 1 Cor. 3:16,17; Eph. 2:20-22; Gen. 28:14; Gal. 3:29.
That meantime the chiseling, shaping and polishing, of consecrated believers
in Christ's atonement for sin, progresses; and when the last of these "living stones," "elect and precious," shall have been made ready, the great Master Workman will bring all together in the First Resurrection; and the Temple shall be filled with his glory, and be the meeting place between God and men throughout the Millennium. – Rev. 15:5-8.
That the Basis of Hope, for the Church and the World, lies in the fact that
"Jesus Christ, by the grace of God, tasted death for every man," "a ransom for all," and will be "the true light which lighteth every man that cometh into the world," "in due time." – Heb. 2:9; John 1:9; 1 Tim. 2:5,6.
That the Hope of the Church is that she may be like her Lord, "see him
as he is," be "partaker of the divine nature," and share his glory as his joint-heir. – 1 John 3:2; John 17:24; Rom. 8:17; 2 Pet. 1:4.
That the present mission of the Church is the perfecting of the saints for
the future work of service; to develop in herself every grace; to be God's witness to the world; and to prepare to be the kings and priests of the next age. – Eph. 4:12; Matt. 24:14; Rev. 1:6; 20:6.
That the hope for the World lies in the blessings of knowledge and opportunity
to be brought to by Christ's Millennial Kingdom – the restitution of all that was lost in Adam, to all the willing and obedient, at the hands of their Redeemer and his glorified Church. – Acts 3:19-21; Isa. 35.
CHARLES T. RUSSELL, Editor; MRS. C. T. RUSSELL, Associate.

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Those of the interested, who by reason of old age or accident, or other adversity are unable to pay for the TOWER will be supplied FREE, if they will send a Postal Card each December, stating their case and requesting the paper.

[R1798 : page 90]

WHEN REVILED, HE REVILED NOT AGAIN!

"Blessed are ye when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice and be exceeding glad; for great is your reward in heaven; for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you." – Matt. 5:11,12.

From various quarters come jibes and misrepresentations and bitter invectives against MILLENNIAL DAWN, the OLD THEOLOGY tracts, ZION'S WATCH TOWER and the Editor. We keep a file of these, and wonder how much shame and confusion of face will come to their authors when, very shortly, "every hidden thing shall be revealed," and the Lord shall make manifest to the world the now secret motives which actuate men in their opposition to truth.

In sending these to us (and we are always glad to receive them), the brethren often express their confidence that we will "reply" on the subject. But, since the WATCH TOWER was started, we have carefully refrained from personalities relating to ourselves or others. Nothing has ever appeared except what we deemed necessary by way of explanation to keep the flock from being deceived, – nothing more; nothing as a defense or bombast of ourselves, nothing of an attack upon others. We attack false doctrines, and, in the event of their being promulgated by well known, public men, we give their names. (As in the case of Dr. Abbott, Bishop Foster, H. W. Beecher, Prof. Drummond, et al.) But we never discuss men, nor personal affairs, theirs or our own. We are – Set for the defence of the Truth, and the overthrow of Error, pertinent to the Gospel; not for self-defence, nor for attack upon others.

Our readers may rest assured, however, that if any criticism be made which in our judgment would need answer, it will be given. The so-called criticisms of MILLENNIAL DAWN so far are merely invectives apparently prompted by malice, which can command neither Scripture nor logic, and can use only epithets. They are worthy only of silent pity or benevolence, according to the standpoint of the writers. The best answer to anyone inquiring concerning such misrepresentations is to hand him a copy of the DAWN to read. That will be answer enough for people desirous of comprehending the subjects.

And we write thus for you, as well as for ourselves; for all associated with the truth bear some of its reproaches (Psa. 69:9), and will in due time share the rewards with our Lord and Head.

Let our watchword be, Onward! in the name and love and service of our King of kings. "Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart." – Psa. 31:24. page 90

MONEY IN THE MAILS is unsafe; and, besides, it puts too great a temptation before some people. Send by Draft or Money Order.

[R1797 : page 91]

VIEWS FROM THE TOWER.

THE five items below are from the columns of The Gospel Message. We are glad to see that some of Zion's Watchmen are awake and not afraid to "Sound the Alarm!"

THE DRIFT OF THE TIMES.

"A western Bishop of the M.E. Church in conversation with one of our county workers in Nebraska said that Verbal Inspiration was one of the most dangerous doctrines ever taught, that it was the cause of more abominable heresies than most any other doctrine, being associated with such ideas as the Second Coming of the Lord, and the rest of those things, and urged another worker – a Methodist – to stand by the Church of his fathers.

"If this Methodist worker should stand by the Church of his fathers, he would probably not be in speaking distance of this present, Bible-destroying Bishop, for, thank God! Wesley, Fletcher and the fathers believed the Bible to be very words from God, and earnestly desired and looked for the second coming of Christ....Sound the Alarm!

*                         *                         *

"The First Congregational Church of Denver has just installed Dr. John P. Coyle as pastor. During the examination previous to the installation services he would not admit that Christ was the Son of God more than any other good man. That he lived in closer personal relationship with God and in greater conformity with his will and nature than any other who ever lived, he acknowledged, but no more. Answering the question, 'What do you mean by believing in the Lord Jesus Christ?' he said: 'Coming into the same kind of personal relationship with him that some poor fellow does who cannot get along without depending upon Brother Uzzell.' (This brother is pastor of a church that does much to supply the needs of the poor). He also stated that he regarded Christ as a consummation of the development of the world at the time when he came. ....At the conclusion of the examination the committee retired and discussed the situation nearly two hours, the final vote standing fourteen to five in favor of his installation as the new pastor....

"We say it deliberately, and after due consideration, we believe that it would have been better for this church to have installed some noted infidel, for then a less number would likely be deceived and led away into the arms of the Adversary. Thus the teachings of those destroyers of the Faith – Professor Herron and his associates – are being worked out in Congregationalism, and the end is not yet. Sound the alarm!

*                         *                         *

"A leading Y.M.C.A. in western Iowa analyzed its membership in the official organ of the Associations, and under denominations placed Catholics, Unitarians and Jews, along with Methodists, Presbyterians, Congregationalists, Baptists, etc., with no distinction whatever.

"A southern Y.M.C.A. General Secretary writes us of his dissatisfaction with his present work, and states that he is crowded from early morning until late at night with finances, gymnasium classes and the social and educational departments, and even the religious work is becoming such a display with catchy attractions that it is hard work to get a religious meeting (so-called) without a brass band, and the less spirituality there is the more it is liked, even by those who seem to deplore such a state of affairs.

"All classed in together, and all given over to worldly sides of the work, that the Society may be made to go, and be counted a success before men – these are certainly not the marks of a Christian organization. It is, however, gratifying to know that all the Associations have not reached this place, but such is certainly the downward tendency of the day; and lest many of our Christian young men be carried down the stream, the servants of the Master will do well to – Sound the alarm!

*                         *                         *

"Christian Science is developing rapidly. The teaching of the advocates of this unscriptural sect leads them into peculiar positions. In Burlington, Iowa, the disciples of this theory have requested that the authorities excuse their children from attendance upon the classes in physiology, [R1797 : page 92] maintaining that there is no such thing as a material body: they do not want their children to be taught to believe in lungs, livers and stomachs as actually existing. Of all the silly fads which intelligent people have been guilty of advocating, this fad of Christian Science seems the silliest: its very name is a misnomer, for they deny the Christ. If they have no bodily organism it seems a wanton waste of money to purchase food – they might better use their cash for the propagation of their doctrines....Sound the Alarm!

*                         *                         *
[R1798 : page 92]

"A short time ago a prominent Presbyterian minister in eastern Kansas made the opening speech for a Hebrew fair. There were present Jews, Roman Catholics, Congregationalists, Presbyterians and other classes of people, and among other things he said, 'This meeting shows me that the people are rising above sectional differences and are becoming more acquainted with good ways along this line; it is a sign of progress and that man will soon be free. I love to meet men as men; God is the Father of all and not of any particular church. Such feelings better men and refine women, and I am glad to see all kinds of people here for the benefit of this church. I congratulate you on your Rabbi; he is the best minister you have ever had; he is a man of God; stand by him; he stands before you as a representative of the Almighty God.' The Rabbi then thanked the minister, saying, 'He is my brother, broad-hearted and world-embracing. I am glad to see such a union to bring offerings to the High Priests of Benevolence.' As he concluded his remarks the minister stepped to his side and the two grasped hands for a few seconds, after which, the minister announced, 'This fair is now open.' Among the attractions there were to be voting contests with prizes – the most popular young lady, a side saddle; the most popular minister, a fine clock; etc.

"Has this Presbyterian minister forgotten Calvary? – Does he intend to deny his Lord and Master? Our Savior said, 'No man cometh unto the Father, but by me,' and instead of preaching Jesus of Nazareth, Israel's crucified Messiah, to this poor Christ-rejecting Rabbi, he closely associates with him in the foolishness of a church show, and publicly tells him he is 'a man of God.' Such words seem almost to be blasphemy against God's only begotten and well beloved Son. May God forgive him, and raise up some faithful Gospel preacher in that city to – Sound the alarm!"

[R1798 : page 92]

THE JUST SHALL LIVE BY FAITH.

"Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him. But we are not of them that draw back unto perdition, but of them who believe to the saving of the soul." – Heb. 10:38,39.
T
HERE is a solemn significance about these words of the Apostle which the thoughtful Christian will not fail to perceive. Those addressed are not worldly people, but consecrated believers, justified by faith in Christ as their Redeemer. By faith they have passed from death unto life; to them old things have passed away and all things have become new; they are new creatures in Christ Jesus; they are sons and heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Jesus Christ, if so be that they suffer with him, following in his footsteps of self-sacrifice, even unto death. They are begotten again to a hope of life (eternal), to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that fadeth not away – an inheritance, however, into which they are not immediately ushered, but which is reserved in heaven for them.

The promises of God made to this class are exceeding great and precious, and if they are really believed they cannot fail to powerfully influence the life; but if they are not received, it is manifest that they can have no power over the life. And more, if they be not fully believed, if they be not personally appropriated, they are not applicable, and no one can hope for anything in them. This is clearly intimated in the above words of the Apostle – "Now the just shall live by faith." It is not enough that, by faith, we receive the first impulse of life, but, having passed from death unto life, by the same means, we must continue to receive and appropriate spiritual nourishment, that we may grow thereby: we must walk by faith, following the leading of the holy spirit through the Word of Truth.

In this way of faith there is much of present privilege, as well as future prospect. It is the way in which we may enjoy the fellowship and the abiding presence of our Lord Jesus and our Heavenly Father, in which we may have intimate personal communion with them, and in which we may also have the witness of the holy spirit to our adoption and continued acceptance as sons of God, and the comfort of the Scriptures, the communion of saints, and the blessed inspiration, assistance and encouragement of all the means of grace. These present privileges, together with the glorious hopes they inspire and keep alive within us, are the meat which we have to eat which the world knows not of, enabling us to live a new life apart from the world – apart from its spirit and its fellowship. This is what it is to walk by faith. It signifies a course of life quite contrary to the usual order of the world, which is to walk by sight and after the desires of the flesh. Men of the world look at the things that are seen: they judge of their relative values, but only with reference to temporal interests, entirely ignoring their eternal interests and the claims of the Creator upon them. Lacking faith in the divine Word, they lack substantial hope beyond the present; and upon their own judgment of the relative values of earthly prizes and their hopes of winning them, they exercise themselves in their pursuit, leaving the questions of the future and of present responsibility to God practically out of consideration.

But not so is it with the true child of God. He walks by faith and not by sight: he looks not at the things that are seen, but at the things that are unseen (2 Cor. 4:18), ever bearing in mind that the things that are seen are temporal, uncertain and unsatisfactory, while the things that are unseen are eternal, sure to the faithful, and of inestimable value. He is living, not for the present, but for the future – for the things revealed to the eye of faith in [R1798 : page 93] the promises of God, all of which are yea and amen in Christ Jesus, to them that believe. In this life of faith the motives, hopes, aims, ambitions and joys are all of a higher, nobler order than those of the world; but they are such as depend entirely upon faith. If the Christian's faith be overthrown he must of necessity to that extent cease to live the life of faith; that is, he will cease to be actuated by the same motives, etc., which his faith previously inspired. And if, through unfaithfulness, his spiritual vision has become dim, so that he can no longer see or rightly estimate the value of spiritual things, the world, the flesh and the devil are still busy presenting allurements and deceptions to lead him farther and farther away from God, in whose favor alone is life.

Weariness in well doing and desire for the rewards of [R1799 : page 93] unfaithfulness are first steps in drawing back from the way of faith and also from the favor of God. In the light of our text, this drawing back is a most serious matter. The intimation of verse 39 is that it is a drawing back unto perdition, destruction – "If any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him. But we are not of them who draw back unto perdition, but of them that believe to the saving of the soul."

The drawing back may at first be a very slight departure from the narrow way of sacrifice – only a looking back, perhaps, with a sigh for the things behind, a little slowing up of speed in the race set before us; then a little disposition to compromise the truth in favor of the cravings of the fallen nature. Thus the way is prepared for the arts of the tempter, who is quick to note our weak points, and to take advantage of them in a manner best suited to our case. Subtle errors are brought to bear against the judgment; pleasing allurements, with a show of righteousness, are presented to the fleshly mind; and, almost imperceptibly, the soul forgets its "first love" for the Lord, and its first zeal in his service, and drifts away from the truth and the spirit of it, being no longer led of the holy spirit of God.

Few indeed are the children of God who have never been tempted in this direction; for we all have the treasure of the new nature "in earthen vessels," and between the new and the old natures there is a constant warfare; and only by continued vigilance can the new nature keep the old in abeyance. In the wearisome life-long struggle we often need our Father's chastening hand to guide and keep us in the way. "What son is he whom the Father chasteneth not?" By instruction, discipline, experience, he leads us on, and if at heart our disposition is to be led of the spirit – to gratefully receive the instruction, humbly accept the discipline, and meekly profit by the experience, then will the Lord have pleasure in leading us on from grace to grace and from victory unto victory. To merely stand and battle on the defensive is very wearisome, and gains no victory. To gain the victory we must not only put on the armor of God, but we must be heroes in the strife, and wage an aggressive warfare upon the lusts of the eye and flesh and pride of life and all the foes of righteousness and purity. Love – love for the Lord, for the truth and for righteousness – must inspire us, or we shall never be victors. Love alone will keep us faithful even unto death, and make us meet for the inheritance of the saints in light. Where fervent love rules in the heart it implies that the heart is fully submitted to the Lord, and that means that nine-tenths of the battle is already won. But even then, as the Apostle says (Jude 21), we must keep ourselves in the love of God, in watchfulness and prayer and zeal; and grace will abound where love abounds.

In such faithful obedience to the truth, and earnest endeavor to conform to its principles, the way and the truth grow more and more precious, and our willing feet with joy are led in the paths of righteousness and peace – into life everlasting.

The life of faith is an individual matter, as well of the heart as of the head. It is far more than an acceptance of doctrines which we consider Scriptural and therefore true; it is the assimilation of that which we have proved to be the truth, so that its principles become our principles, and its promises our inspiration. This is what it is to "believe to the saving of the soul." "As many as are led by the spirit of God, they are the sons of God." And however we may realize our insufficiency of ourselves to overcome the world, the flesh and the devil in this seemingly unequal contest, let us remember, for our encouragement, that he who has begun a good work in us will carry it on to completion, if we humbly submit ourselves to his leading and discipline. Our Lord's promise is that he will not suffer us to be tempted beyond what we are able to endure. Let us hold fast our faith and our confidence in his sure word of promise – hold the truth in righteousness and faithfulness, and we shall not be of them who draw back and mind earthly things.

[R1799 : page 93]

GOD NOT THE AUTHOR OF SIN.

A BROTHER who was greatly helped by the vindication of God's character in the article, "Christian Common Sense," in our March 1 issue, refers us to Job 42:11 as a positive statement that the evil which befell Job was brought upon him by Jehovah.

In reply we quote from our issue of Aug. 1, '94, page 245, as follows: –

"Satan is indeed the prince of the air, the present heavens – ecclesiasticism, both heathen and nominal Christian – and only the Lord's "little flock" are kept, so that the "wicked one toucheth them not." – 1 John 5:18. [R1800 : page 93]

"But in another sense Satan is prince of the air power, – literally. When Job was given into his hand to be tried, he manifested his power of death. He caused fire to fall from heaven (probably a bolt of lightning), and destroyed [R1800 : page 94] several of Job's servants and his sheep. He caused a great wind (a cyclone or tornado) to come upon Job's house, and thus killed Job's sons and daughters.

"Satan's object evidently was to make Job suppose that God caused those calamities and thus to cause Job to feel bitter and resentful against God, and to 'curse God and die;' or to shake his faith in there being any God. Indeed, that such was Satan's object is implied in the narrative; and Job's friends, although God-fearing men, were deceived into this view, and tried for days to convince Job that his afflictions were the work of the Lord. But of Job it is written, 'In all this Job sinned not, nor charged God foolishly [with being the author of his calamities.]' – Job 1:22."

Nevertheless, Job knew to recognize his adversities as God permitted (Job 2:10); because Satan could do no more than God would permit him to do.

However, the Brother only partially grasped our argument; which was not that God never causes calamities, such as Job experienced, such as Israel experienced, and such as are promised in the judgments of the "Day of Jehovah;" but that God never commits sin (moral evil), nor influences nor compels men to do so.

We do not wonder that the real points might be confused in some minds in which Christian Common Sense rules, to whom it would be too absurd – nay, too blasphemous – to suppose that the Holy One, who is the very standard and pattern of righteousness (1 Pet. 1:15,16), could be the author and instigator of "all sin, wickedness and crime," as some are declaring is the "new light" into which they have come and into which they are striving to lead others. – See 2 Cor. 11:14.

Another inquiry is with reference to the Hebrew word rendered evil in Isa. 45:7 and Amos 3:6, which in our issue of March 1 we showed had not the remotest reference to moral evil, sin.

We reply, – The word in Hebrew is ra. It is translated thirty-two different ways in our common version, thus: – Adversity, Affliction, Calamity, Distress, Grief, Hurt, Ill, Mischief, Misery, Sorrow, Trouble, Wicked, Wickedness, Evil, etc.

Thus it will be seen that like our English word evil it might be used in referring to anything not good, undesirable; and both in the Hebrew and the English we should be obliged to judge from the context whether moral evil (sin) or physical evil (pain, trouble, etc.) is meant. We showed beyond question in our article referred to that the context showed that physical evil (trouble, calamity, etc.) is the only meaning which can be drawn from "evil" in the texts cited as proof-texts (Isa. 45:7; Amos 3:6) by those who would blasphemously, as well as foolishly, charge God with being the author and instigator of "all the sin and wickedness and crime" of the world.

An illustration of the use of ra where it does signify sin, wickedness and crime may be found in Isa. 5:20. It there, however, seems to apply to those who are traducing God's character – calling his good evil, calling his righteousness sin, and in general confusing themselves and others by calling darkness light, and light darkness. Verily, "If the light that is in thee become darkness, how great is that darkness." – Matt. 6:23.

[We still have over 1000 extra copies of our March 1 issue which we will supply free to our readers to loan to people disturbed by the blasphemous doctrine it opposes and exposes. An occasional one whose head has been confused by sophistry, but whose heart, as well as his tongue, is still loyal to the Lord, may be reached; but our experience is – not many. Whenever the blasphemous words have eaten "as doth a canker" (2 Tim. 2:17) into the heart, so that they love darkness rather than light, when both are before them, – prefer to think of God as the one from whom cometh every evil thought, propensity and act, rather than to recognize him as the Light wherein is no darkness – you may conclude that not only is the head confused, but that the heart also is radically antagonistic to both the spirit and the Word of God. Turn from such, notwithstanding their "feigned words," and turn to and fellowship "him that hath an ear to hear" and a heart to love the first principles of the gospel and only such further teaching as is in full harmony with those first principles. As our Lord did, let us give special attention to "Israelites indeed, in whom is no guile."]

[R1800 : page 94]

THE LORD'S SUPPER.

– APRIL 28, MARK 14:12-26; – MATT. 26:17-30; LUKE 22:7-30; 1 COR. 11:23-25. –

Golden Text – "This do in remembrance of me."
V
ERSES 12-16
. The first day of unleavened bread when they killed the Passover lamb, was the 14th of Nisan (See March 15 TOWER, page 71). The Feast of Passover began on the 15th and lasted for seven days; the day beginning at sunset – 6 P.M., of the preceding day. (Exod. 12:18-20.) The prohibition of the use of leaven during this time was a reminder (1) of the haste with which they fled from Egypt, not having time to wait for bread to rise (Exod. 12:34,39); and (2) of their sufferings in Egypt, on account of which it was called the bread of affliction. (Deut. 16:3.) But (3) its chief significance was the putting away of sin, leaven being incipient putrefaction and hence a symbol of impurity. (1 Cor. 5:6-8; Matt. 16:6.) Considering Israel in its typical character and their deliverance from Egyptian bondage as a type of the deliverance of the world from the bondage of sin and death, this feast is seen to be a type of the world's proper condition in the Millennial age. Having, through Christ, experienced the great deliverance from the present bondage of sin and death and the great time of trouble, it will be required of all that they put away from them the leaven of sin and, in grateful remembrance of their deliverance, keep the feast (rejoicing in and partaking of the good things of God), not with the leaven of selfishness, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. [R1800 : page 95]

The killing of the passover lamb, which prefigured the sacrifice of Christ, was always done on the 14th of Nisan (Exod. 12:6); so also the sacrifice of Christ was accomplished on this same day, thus fulfilling the prediction of the type. The sacrifice of the lamb prefigured the sacrifice of Christ for the salvation of "the Church of the first-born," and the subsequent deliverance of the whole groaning creation of which the nation of Israel was a type.

During the passover week hospitality was recognized as a duty in Jerusalem: hence the readiness with which the Lord's request for a room was granted. Probably the man was a believer, as verse 14 would seem to indicate; or there may have been some previous arrangement with him, as verse 15 seems to show.

Verses 17-21. The strife to be greatest, mentioned only by Luke (22:24), probably began when they were taking their places at the table, each desiring to be nearest to the Lord and so manifesting somewhat of a selfish spirit. This was made the occasion of a very touching illustration of humility on the Lord's part, and the enforcement of the truth upon the minds of the disciples that without this very necessary qualification they could not enter the Kingdom of heaven. – John 13:5.

The attitude of the disciples upon the Lord's announcement that one of them should betray him showed at once the effect of this lesson on humility. They were not overconfident, but each seeming to fear his own stability, inquiringly turned to the Lord saying, not, Lord, is it this one or that one? but, Lord, is it I? They had the spirit of self-examination.

The hardness of Judas' heart and the depth of hypocrisy manifested in the coolness with which he heard the Lord's warning (verse 21) and in the deliberate plotting and wicked perseverance in evil are in marked contrast with the humble, loving spirit of the eleven. It is an illustration of the hopelessness of a soul willingly submitted to the power of Satan. Verse 21 leaves no ray of hope for his restoration. See also John 17:12. The goodness of God only hardened his heart and therefore there was no remedy.

Verses 22-24 point out the very obvious import of the emblems, bread and wine. The broken bread represented the sacrifice of Christ's humanity for our redemption, the benefits of which sacrifice we must individually appropriate by faith, such appropriation being symbolized by the eating of it. The cup, the wine, which symbolized his shed blood, the blood of the New Covenant shed for many for the remission of sins, had the same significance as the broken bread, our partaking of it also meaning our appropriation of the benefits of his sacrifice, thus securing our justification. So the Lord declares, saying, "Except ye [thus by faith] eat my flesh and drink my blood, ye have no life in you." (John 6:53.) And to this significance the Apostle Paul (1 Cor. 10:16,17) shows another; viz., our participation with him, as members of his body, in the sacrifice: – "The cup of blessing for which we bless God, is it not a participation of the blood of the Anointed one? The loaf which we break, is it not a participation of the body of the Anointed one? Because there is one loaf, we, the many, are one body; for we all partake of the one loaf." [R1801 : page 95]

After the Supper followed all those words of instruction, consolation, comfort and hope, and the touching prayer reported by John (13:33-38; Chapters 14-17). It was a season never to be forgotten by the disciples, one whose influence was very manifest in their subsequent course.

Verse 25 foretells the final triumph of Christ and the Church when the sufferings of the present time are all ended. Then their feasting together will have a new and blessed significance, being commemorative of the heroism of their faith and their fidelity to the divine purpose under the most crucial tests, and a rejoicing together in the victory that faith and fidelity.

Verse 26. "And when they had sung a hymn they went out into the Mount of Olives." Instead of dispersing they went out together. Observing the Lord's sadness and forebodings, the eleven sought to comfort and help him with their love and sympathy, while Judas went on his diabolical errand.

[R1801 : page 95]

THE AGONY IN GETHSEMANE.

– MAY 5, MARK 14:32-42; – MATT. 26:36-46; LUKE 22:39-46; JOHN 18:1. –

Golden Text – "The cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it?"
A
S we consider the solemn scenes of this lesson, let it be with reverence and deep gratitude, remembering it was our load the Master bore, that it was the chastisement of our peace that was upon him, and that with his stripes we are healed.

The narrative, so familiar to every Christian, is one full of precious lessons, especially to those who, by his grace, are endeavoring to follow in the Lord's footsteps. We observe (1) that when the Master realized that his hour of betrayal and fierce temptation was close at hand, having first comforted, counselled, and prayed for and with his disciples, his next strong impulse was to seek a solitary place for prayer and communion with God, that he might find grace to help in time of need. (2) We note also his love for his disciples, and his desire for their love and sympathy in return. "Having loved his own, he loved them to the end." And because he loved them, and knew that they loved him, he permitted them to accompany him to the place of prayer, that they might watch and pray with him. Leaving all but Peter and James and John at the entrance of the garden, as a sort of outer guard against the sudden intrusion of his betrayer upon his last hour of prayer, he advanced with the three – the three in whose ardent natures he seemed to find the most active and consoling sympathy – and, with an earnest appeal to them to watch and pray, he left them and went about a stone's throw beyond. Three times did he rise from prayer and return to them in anguish of soul to feel the touch of human sympathy, saying, "My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death." It was a sorrow, an agony, which, of itself, would have worn him out shortly – an intense mental and nervous strain which caused him to sweat great drops of blood.

It was no sign of weakness in the Master that he thus craved human sympathy. His was no coarse, stoical nature, insensible to pain and shame and loss; nor was it a proud, self-centered nature which stood aloof from human fellowship, although those with whom he associated were so far beneath his glorious perfection. Gracefully he condescended to men of low estate, and esteemed them brethren beloved, of whom he was not ashamed. His was a refined nature, keenly appreciative of all that is lovely and pure and good, [R1801 : page 96] and correspondingly sensitive to pain from everything to the contrary of these. Human degradation and human woe must continually have borne heavily upon him during all his earthly life. But in this awful hour all the griefs and burdens of the whole world were rolled upon his shoulders, and he was to suffer as though he himself were the sinner – to suffer death, extinction of being, trusting alone in the Father's grace for a resurrection. Into this one hour were crowded, not only the mental realization of death and the physical agony and shame, the cruelty and torture of a horrible death, but also the sense of desolation to be experienced when even his beloved disciples, overcome by fear and dismay, should forsake him; and the sorrowful reflections upon the irretrievable loss of Judas, and upon the course of the Jewish nation – "his own" people, who despised him and were about to call down upon their own heads the vengeance of his blood, saying, "His blood be upon us and on our children." He foresaw the terrible calamities that in consequence must soon overwhelm them. Then the degradation of a whole guilty world, which must continue to groan and travail in pain until by his sacrifice he should gain deliverance for them from sin and death, caused him to feel the burden of responsibility to an extent which we can only approximate, but cannot fully comprehend. And in addition to all this was his knowledge of the fact that every jot and tittle of the law with reference to the sacrifice must be perfectly fulfilled according to the pattern in the typical sacrifice of the day of atonement.* If he should fail in any part of the work, all would be lost, both for himself and for men. And yet, though a perfect man, he realized that the flesh, however perfect, was unequal to the task.

*See TABERNACLE SHADOWS, page T39.

How much depended upon our Lord's fortitude in that awful hour, alone and defenceless in the darkness of overwhelming night, awaiting the certain arrival of his betrayer and the will of his persecutors maddened with hate and full of the energy of Satan! Oh, how the destinies of the world and of himself seemed to tremble in the balances! Even the perfect human nature was not equal to such an emergency without divine aid, therefore it was that he offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him who was able to save him from death, by a resurrection. The necessary comfort was provided through the Prophet Isaiah (42:1,6), by whom Jehovah said, "Behold my servant whom I uphold, mine elect, in whom my soul delighteth: ...I, the Lord, have called thee in righteousness, and will hold thine hand, and will keep thee [from falling or failure], and give thee for a covenant of the people, for a light of the Gentiles....He shall not fail nor be discouraged."

When the fearful ordeal in Gethsemane strained the powers of endurance almost to their utmost tension his prayer was only, "If it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless, not my will, but thine be done." Then, though the cup might not pass from him, an angel came and ministered to him. Just how, we know not, but probably by refreshing his mind with the precious promises and prophetic pictures of the coming glory, which none of his disciples had sufficiently comprehended to thus comfort him in this hour when the gloom of thick darkness settled down upon his soul, crowding out hope and bringing a sorrow exceeding great, "even unto death." Ah, it was Jehovah's hand upholding him, blessed by his holy name! according to his promise, that he might not fail nor be discouraged.

The result of that blessed ministry was a reinforced courage which commands the deepest admiration. It was not a courage born of stoical indifference to pain and shame and loss, but a courage born of that faith which is anchored fast within the vail of the divine promises and power. With his eye of faith upon the glorious victory of truth and righteousness, when he should see of the travail of his soul and be satisfied – satisfied with the eternal joy and blessedness of a redeemed world, with the welcome and wealth of the Father's blessing, and the love and gratitude of every loyal creature in heaven and in earth – yes, comforted and encouraged thus with a realizing sense of the rewards of faith and faithful endurance to the end, he could now calmly and even courageously, go forth to meet the foe. Yes, this was the victory by which he overcame, even his faith, and so we also are to overcome.

Now commenced the realization of the dreadful forebodings of Gethsemane. Mark his calm, dignified fortitude, as he addresses Judas and the Roman soldiers, and its effect upon them. They were so overpowered with the grandeur and nobility of this wonderful man that they could not have taken him had he not voluntarily placed himself in their hand. Notice, too, his kind consideration for the bewildered and weary disciples, and his loving excuse for them, "The spirit truly is willing, but the flesh is weak," and his request to the Roman soldiers at the time of his arrest that they might be permitted to go their way (John 18:8), that so they might escape sharing in his persecutions. So through all the trial and mocking, and finally the crucifixion, his courage and solicitude for the welfare of others never failed.

As we thus view our Lord under a trial so crucial, and mark how the hand of Jehovah upheld him, let it strengthen the faith of all who are endeavoring to walk in his footsteps, to whom he says, Be of good cheer, I have overcome the world: and this is the victory that overcometh, even your faith. (John 16:33; 1 John 5:4.) Has not the Lord, Jehovah, commissioned his angels also to bear up the "feet" of the body of Christ, lest at any time they be dashed against a stone (lest some overwhelming trial should prove too much for them)? (Psa. 91:11,12.) Yes, as surely as his hand upheld the Head, our Lord Jesus, so surely will he bear up the feet. "Fear not, little flock: it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the Kingdom," though through much tribulation ye shall enter it. The angels are all ministering spirits sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation. Though their ministry is unseen [R1802 : page 96] by us, it is not therefore unreal, but potent for good. Our fellow-members, too, in the body of Christ are all the Lord's active messengers to each other, thus in turn sharing the privilege of bearing up the feet.

But to have this help in time of need we must invoke it. Every day and every hour is indeed a time of need; hence our necessity of living in an atmosphere of prayer – to pray without ceasing. And if the Lord needed often to seek retirement from the busy scenes of his active life to be alone with God, to keep the close bond of loving sympathy established, surely we need to do so; and in so doing we shall always find grace to help in time of need. In seasons of heavy trial the darkness may indeed so deepen upon the soul, as in our dear Lord's case, as almost to shut out the stars of hope; yet if, like the Lord, we hold on to the omnipotent arm of Jehovah and meekly say, "Nevertheless, not my will, but thine be done," his grace will always be sufficient; and with the Psalmist we can say, Though my flesh and my heart fail, yet God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever (Psa. 73:26); and, with the Lord, our hearts will respond – "The cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it?"

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ENCOURAGING WORDS FROM FAITHFUL WORKERS.

DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL: – This morning, in thinking over the subject of "present experience," or "present privilege," I thought, I will write of it to one of the brethren; then I thought, I will write it to the Church at New York; then again I thought, No: I will write it to Brother Russell for the Church in general. So here it is: –

KNOWING AND DOING.

Practical and perfect obedience (on our part to God) "is a consummation devoutly to be wished." It is, it seems to me, one of the most timely, vitally important and intensely interesting subjects that can engage our attention at this season of the Christian year, when we have again been privileged to "Do this in remembrance of me."

It is not enough simply to resolve or determine to do right or to obey God. We may sing:

"I want to touch lightly the things of this earth,
Esteeming them only of trifling worth!
From sin and its bondage I would be set free,
And live, my dear Savior, live only for thee!"
But unless we go further, and actually make advancement in character, we will prove failures, and finally be completely shipwrecked.

"If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them." (John 13:17.) Our Lord, here, as in other places, lays special stress on obedience, as do also all of the New Testament writers. Many seem content simply to know these things. Alas! how many there are who stop with a knowledge of God's plan, as it is now revealed and understood, seemingly unmindful of the latter clause of this text. Their lives are not conformed to the Word, nor to the likeness of Christ. (See Rom. 6:17, Diaglott; Rom. 8:29; 12:1,2.) It would seem at first that they really desire to be moulded and fashioned into the image of God's dear Son, but they go no further. They are not willing to pay the price: obedience is the price. They are not willing to endure the self-sacrifice and self-denial required by their covenant; for the "High Calling" costs all we have, though it is also worth all it costs. But these forget, or disregard, our Lord's words: "Happy are ye, if ye do them!"

How prone we all are to desire and to acquire knowledge, at the expense of our spiritual development, and of the chief "fruit of the spirit," love – forgetting that "knowledge puffeth up, but love edifieth." Knowledge does not bring, nor produce, happiness. Obedience does. This we know, not only from our text, but by experience as well.

We must bear in mind, however, that obedience is prompted by love; even as he said: "If ye love me, keep my commandments;" or "If a man love me, he will keep my words." Our love, then, is the measure of our obedience, and vice versa.

Perhaps some one will say, "Oh! but you forget that he takes the will for the deed," and that it is written: 'Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin.'" No, we do not forget: we are well aware of that glorious truth; but we claim that there is great danger, right here, of "presumptuous sins." – Psa. 19:13; read also Rom. 2:1-6; 6:12-22.

Let us now notice some other texts on the importance of obedience. In Mark 3:34,35, our Lord does not say, whosoever shall hear, or understand, or desire to do, nor even try to do, but "whosoever shall do the will of God, the same is my brother, and my sister, and mother." What a privilege! Is it not worth striving for?

Luke 6:46: "And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?"

John 15:14: "Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you." What an honor to be the Lord's friend!

Matt. 7:21-27: Here we are taught that works are not always obedience; in other words, "Obedience is better than sacrifice." Many there are who are consecrated to a system, or to a work, who are not fully consecrated to him. How earnestly we should desire and strive to be "wise" in his estimation!

James 1:25: "Blessed," not in his profession, not in his desire, nor yet in his determination; but blessed in his doing.

John 14:21-23: Here is an experience to be coveted.

Gal. 6:9 – not in well-meaning, but in well-doing. So in 1 Pet. 4:19.

Col. 3:23: "And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men." Oh, to measure fully up to this experience!

Heb. 2:3: Simply to neglect is fatal. We must stand (Eph. 6:13,14), or progress. To stand, in this "evil day," requires the "whole armor;" and, to progress, we have to (beside having on the whole armor) "pray always" and "watch," as in verse 18.

When tempted in any line or to any degree, "Let us fly to the Word." – Matt. 4:4. Here are some of the "exceeding great and precious promises," upon which we may stand. Please read them carefully. – 2 Cor. 12:9,10; 2:14; 1 Cor. 10:13; 1:26-31; 2 Cor. 9:8; Phil. 4:19.

We will never (while in the flesh) be exempt from temptations; but it is not a sin to be tempted: "He was tempted in all points like as we are, yet without sin!" We must expect a constant and a hard fight. Satan is so persistent. The poet says truly:

"Yield not to temptation; for yielding is sin.
Each vict'ry will help you some other to win."

So also there is truth in the old proverb, "We cannot prevent the birds from flying over our heads; but we can prevent them from building their nests in our hair." And the Scriptures exhort us to "Resist the devil, and he will flee from you." "Neither give place to the devil." "Above all things taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked (one)." "Take us the little foxes (i.e., wicked thoughts, etc.,) that spoil the vines." "Love thinketh no evil!" (Oh, for instant and constant victory!) Whatsoever things are pure, lovely, etc., think on these things. See also 2 Cor. 10:5.

"All for Jesus, all for Jesus! all my being's ransomed powers. All my thoughts, and words, and doings; all my days and all my hours."

As one recently wrote, "By never permitting wrong thoughts to have a place (in our minds or hearts), one can overcome much more easily. I speak from experience." Or, as another said, speaking from another standpoint, "We realize more and more the necessity for the development of positive traits of the Divine character, as well as the maintenance of our loyalty and integrity (to him) in the crucial tests to which the world, the flesh and the devil subject us. Oh, the sweet joy and peace that brighten our pathway tonight!" We must not only "cease to do evil," but we must "learn to do well" – really do good works; be "rich in good works;" "always abounding in the work of the Lord."

We all desire to be more spiritual-minded; but how can we? Answer: By feeding constantly on the Word, and by following closely in Christ's footsteps. (1 John 2:6; [R1802 : page 98] 3:3; 1 Pet. 1:22; Acts 10:38.) A recent letter voiced my sentiments: "How I long for a higher life, a closer walk with God, a more realizing sense of Christ's presence. It does seem as though I were not living as high as I ought, or as in my privilege. I see so clearly the necessity of the willing sacrifice. I feel the need of higher, spiritual teaching."

Praise God! that we are growing up "in the unity of the Spirit" and to "the unity of the Faith." (Eph. 4:1-13.) Verse 13 should describe our present experience; or, better, our present experience should approximate that description. And, "speaking the truth in love, may [we] grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ."

As a fitting close for this subject of obedience, I present this, as our motto for the coming year – "What would Jesus do?" And for a definite and complete answer, how appropriate his own words: "I do always those things that please Him!" (John 8:29.) Amen! And may God Almighty help us so to do!

Your Brother, "all for Jesus,"

JAMES A. WEST.

[R1803 : page 98]

DEAR BROTHER: – It is evident that not a few of your readers are solicitous in regard to their spiritual state and prospects; and well they may be, for the time is short, and the issues are tremendous.

In my own mind it lies in this way. When the Lord would open my eyes to the truth, he found in me a will at variance with his. I was born with it, and my evil acts were generated by it. My whole life and activity were inspired by self-will; and what was externally correct was vitiated at heart, because done in alienation from the life and will of God. The carnal mind minded not the things of God.

But, on acquaintance with himself and myself, I saw that, not only is his will sovereign, but righteous – holy, just and good; while mine, being variant from his, was essentially vicious, and could end only in ruin. "For desire, when it hath conceived, bringeth forth sin; and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death." It follows that the universal welfare, in earth and heaven, demands the universal prevalence of God's holy will. His claim to our loyalty and obedience is co-incident with our truest welfare, and enforced by true love. Hence I renounced my self-reliance, self-assertion, self-seeking, and sank my whole self-will into his righteous will. I desire nothing more than his will, I accept nothing less. That he has a will about it, that covers all my case, enthuses me. I am of value in his sight when I am of his mind and will, and act on his plan; he is mine, and I am his; and I can trust his infinite wisdom and power to do all for me that is in his heart of love. Why should I ask more? how can I accept less than he so freely offers? I find it my wisdom to refer it all to his own wisdom and sovereign pleasure. Neither do I envy any other one's fortune. He has a dispensation for you, and also one for me – both conceived in consummate wisdom, and provided for of sovereign grace. Your fortune is fitted to you, and mine is suited to me. And when the Lord's will is done in you, and in me, and in every other one wise enough to submit theirs to his, then every star will shine in its own place and magnitude – even though one star may differ from another star in glory.

Every life, therefore, is a standing success when free and whole-souled choice has been made of the whole will of God – no matter what its worldly circumstances. The endeavor after the obedience of love – as complete as its surrender of will – will be accepted of the Lord, despite the imperfections arising out of nature's infirmities. He is accepted in the Beloved, complete in Christ, and justified freely by the grace of God through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.

For myself, therefore, I do not specify, nor bargain with the Lord. What he offers freely I accept thankfully. I will neither go beyond nor stop short of all his will. I take him at his word, and trust him for all that grace of life that is in Christ for us, and which his holy spirit administers in every soul that offers itself to him. When he fills me, all else is shut out; and when his work is done, all is done. The redeemed of the Lord are guided into all truth. All are complete in him, and satisfied with him. He sees in them of the travail of his soul, and is satisfied.

Great things are present, but greater ones are ahead. How blessed to be on the Lord's side, and to have the Lord on our part in these tremendous times, and thus to escape the things that are coming upon the earth!

J. R. LENTE.

DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL: – Since receiving the tracts we have been at work among our Methodist friends, and as a result our supply (4,000) of No. 25 is exhausted. We still have a number of Do You Know? but will be glad to have at least 5,000 more of No. 25, and such others as you feel disposed to send.

Our friends here all seem glad to help spread the truth, and I am glad to say that it is having a sanctifying influence on our own lives and hearts, and that we rejoice that we have the privilege of serving our Master, even though it is in doing some of the small things. But, as I said to Sister Wise last night, the plan of the ages has become a part of my very life. How precious does the old story become to us, who are in Christ Jesus! How gratifying it is to note the unfolding of God's great plan day by day! Truly the Lord is good! Your Brother in Christ,

C. A. WISE.

DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL: – While Brothers Wright and Causer have been finishing here, I have been down to Bedford. It is a little place, of about three thousand. I was there not quite nine days, and took 195 orders, and think I will have better success in delivering there than here, where I have had to work against more opposition than ever before; for even some of the colored ministers oppose the truth very bitterly. While I cannot say that this opposition and loss of orders have made me feel good, I realize that in view of the life of our Lord and his faithful followers, and the things which they suffered in living a godly life, if I am a follower of the Lord I cannot expect it otherwise; and so I strive to take it patiently; and my earnest desire is that when opposition to the truth waxes stronger I may, by the grace of God, endure faithfully to the end.

When I view the favor that my Heavenly Father has bestowed upon me, in leading me out of gross darkness into his marvelous light, in opening my eyes to an appreciation of our high calling and in enabling me to apply the precious truth to myself, I am greatly comforted, and I experience that peace and joy which the world cannot give or take away. And not by words alone would I show my appreciation of God's grace to me. By my actions, by my daily life in his service, would I prove what is that good, acceptable and perfect will of God.

Please take from my account One Hundred Dollars and apply it where it is most needed. I thought to save what money I could in view of going to New Zealand in the interests of this gracious gospel (as you remember I spoke to you about it), but seeing the amount of work to be done here, I would rather submit to the leading of the Lord as circumstances may direct.

S. J. RICHARDSON.

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DEAR BROTHER AND SISTER RUSSELL: – It is about a year since I came into the light of harvest truth. How wonderfully God has been leading me – more and more fully into the light.

I sometimes ask myself these questions: Am I the same man that I was one year ago? Why is it that all my earthly surroundings have so changed? I seem to see everything in a different light. Earthly objects do not seem so real as before. Is this the experience of all to whom God reveals his plan?

Oh! it does seem that God has drawn me to himself, that I have caught a glimpse of the glories of the heavenly kingdom; and as the truths of the spiritual kingdom are revealed to me more and more, I can say from the heart, "Heaven is my home." Heavenly hopes grow brighter as earthly hopes fade away. And, while here, I rejoice to be counted one of the harvest laborers, though but a humble one. I can never do enough.

Sometimes it is necessary for me to surrender or stand boldly for the truth. Through the grace that is given unto me, I always choose the latter. If I had built my faith on Millennial Dawn only, I should long ago have proved an unfaithful member of the "one body." Thank God! I have searched his Word to learn whether these things are true or not. My dear friends, it is God's work in which we are engaged. I never start out selling Dawns or distributing tracts without first asking him to bless my efforts to aid in spreading the blessed truths of the coming kingdom. I have sold thirteen of the DAWNS ordered of you, and have loaned several among my neighbors. I sell four or five in a half day, and eight or nine when I can give a whole day to the work – which is not often. I could sell many more than that only many poor people are not able to buy. May God bless them. The good news of the kingdom is received more gladly by the common people than by the rich, even as at the first advent.

Dear friends, may God's richest spiritual blessings be showered upon you. Forgetting the present "light afflictions," let us press forward toward the great prize.

Yours in the blessed hope,

W. B. LINDSLEY.

DEAR BROTHER: – For more than a quarter of a century I had been an active worker in church and Sunday School and a diligent Bible student; but as I always approached and viewed the Bible through erroneous doctrines, the effect produced on my mind was one of confusion. When I either read or heard from the pulpit of God's promises to gather his people together into their own land, or that every one should be brought to a knowledge of the truth, or other similar statements, this thought always thrust itself into my mind: "What benefit is this to the thousands of millions who are already dead, and who will yet die, before this gracious time comes?" As I could never find an answer to this, I fell at last into a state of spiritual apathy, content to drift along and teach doctrines which I did not comprehend and only half-believed, my only consolation being that these things would all be cleared up in the next life.

Eighteen months ago a DAWN, VOL. I., was put in my hand by a neighbor. It opened at the chapter on Restitution, and after reading a few sentences my interest was aroused. As I went along, again and again I said to myself, "It is too good to be true." And when I reached the end I resolved that I would not leave a stone unturned until I had satisfied myself whether or not your views and statements were in harmony with the Word of God.

Within six months I had read VOL. I. more than a dozen times, and VOLS. II. and III. four or six times each, comparing the references with the Bible, to see if you had used any of them in a strained sense. Afterward I read the entire [R1804 : page 99] Bible through, so as to view it as a whole; and I became thoroughly satisfied that your statements are in harmony with the original Scriptures, with the accepted character and attributes of God, and also with reason and common sense. And this cannot truly be said of any other system of religious belief with which I am acquainted.

Since I have been thus enlightened, the Bible appears to be an entirely new book. Once it was a duty to read, now it is a pleasure. It seems as if for twenty-five years I had been trying to read it at night by the light of the stars only, and that now the light of the glorious sun shone full upon it.

Mrs. W. and I are still alone in our immediate neighborhood, but we feel and know that we have God on our side; and within a radius of a few miles we have the encouragement and fellowship of more than a score of others who are living and rejoicing in the light of present truth. This is a privilege which has not been always enjoyed by some of us. Bro. Edmonds says he was entirely alone for more than six years after he was led into the light, and he now appreciates the privilege of meeting those of like precious faith almost daily.

We are trying to let our light shine among our friends and old religious associates, but the results thus far have not been very pronounced. I have a number of DAWNS out, but nearly all my friends take hold of the matter in a very sleepy manner. Some only read snatches here and there, and of course miss all the force of their systematic reasoning. One who has given me the most encouraging hopes has carefully read VOLS. I. and II., and is now engaged on VOL. III. He is a Methodist, but says he has been satisfied for years that the orthodox teachings were wrong, yet felt somehow that it was not specially his business.

I can get any number of listeners when I talk on the new truths, but I can not get the same persons to search and prove the truths for themselves. The restitution prospects are embraced the most eagerly, and those who are afraid to believe usually hope that it may prove true. The last new tract, "Do You Know," is a most excellent one, and I think I can make good use of one hundred among such as I know to be thoughtful and religiously inclined, with a request to read as a personal favor.

I have prepared a series of discourses on these Bible truths, and purpose inviting in my friends and neighbors to listen to them; and if they do not bear any fruit now, they will in 1914.

My dear Brother, as a slight encouragement on your toilsome way, I wish to assure you what a blessing the visits of the WATCH TOWER are: how eagerly we look for them, how they are devoured and re-read again and again, and what palatable and strengthening food we find them.

Your brother and friend,

SMITH WALKER.

DEAR FRIENDS: – Please send TOWER for one year to __________. He was a notorious infidel, but now, thank God! he is firmly grasping the truth. The other day he told me, "Each day I see a little more plainly than I did the day before." Yours fraternally,

W. HOPE HAY.

MY DEAR BROTHER: – "One of the characteristics of religious activity in our day is the mobilization of young workers in church work. The annual national and international assemblies of these societies attract world-wide attention and interest. These assemblies bring together as many persons as the national political conventions, and few [R1804 : page 100] cities now have halls large enough to accommodate them."

The above editorial, from the Philadelphia Ledger, goes to substantiate the truth of the final massing of the sects. One word particularly drew my attention – "mobilization."

I am much pleased with the interest manifested by the brothers and sisters here. They are taking a firm hold on the truth; yet the adversary still darkens the intellect of some with reference to "Babylon." Brother Sears has done a most excellent work – I think a harvester's work.

You will find enclosed an order slip for DAWNS. An old acquaintance of the family stopped me on the street this afternoon, and greeted me thus: "What is the name of that book you have been reading, that has so changed your views in religious matters, and where can I procure a copy?" We walked up the street together and had (I trust) a very profitable talk. He told me, among other things, that he was somewhat of a skeptic at present. On leaving I handed him some tracts. I find there is a good field in this direction, and keep a record of the tract given to a person and the date, so that I know how to approach that one again.

Yours in the Faith once delivered to the saints,

L. J. WILCOCK.

[R1799 : page 100]

THE MEMORIAL CELEBRATION.

BY many the sentiment was expressed that the Memorial celebrated on the evening of the 7th at Bible House chapel, Allegheny, was the most impressive and enjoyable of any ever held here. The program mentioned in our last issue, page 2, was closely followed. The morning discourse was from the words: –

"And they crucified him, and parted his garments, casting lots: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the Prophet, 'They parted my garments among them, and upon my vesture did they cast lots.' And, sitting down, they watched him there." – Matt. 27:35,36.

Sister Russell took notes of the discourse, and at some future time portions of it may be reproduced in the TOWER. The morning session, although unusual and less convenient for some of the friends, was well attended, – about one hundred and twenty-five being present – and, on the whole, the arrangement worked very favorably, giving a quiet afternoon for meditation.

Previous opportunities having been afforded for baptisms among the usual congregation, the majority of those immersed were visiting Brethren and Sisters from near-by towns. One Brother, however, came nearly four hundred miles. Twelve were buried in the likeness of the Lord's death, emblemizing in water the burial of their wills into the will of their Redeemer, and thus outwardly confessing him and pledging themselves before men to be dead with him, that they may share also in "his [the first, i.e., the chief] resurrection."

The evening service was well attended – about two hundred being present. We missed the pleasure of meeting with a number of earnest ones from abroad, enjoyed when we used to have the general Conventions at this Memorial date; but we believe that our loss was the gain of the little companies scattered here and there who specially need the very talent which used to be with us on such occasions. This service was introduced by a praise and voluntary testimony meeting in which a number told of the Lord's goodness, their deep appreciation of present truth, and their increased determination to let the love of Christ constrain them to his service – the service of his truth and of his Brethren.

The Memorial Supper followed at eight o'clock. The simplicity of our Lord's ordinances (Baptism and the Memorial Supper) was remarked; – so different from the rituals and ceremonies of men as practiced, not only by the heathen religions, but also as practiced by some who bear the name of Christ: no altar, only a linen-covered table; no candles, but instead the true light of life – Christ; no incense, except the true incense which God accepts through Christ's merit – the prayers of the saints; no priests, except "the royal priesthood" memorializing the death of the great "High Priest of our profession [order];" no gorgeous robes, no vestments, except the robe of Christ's righteousness.

Then we noticed the appropriateness of the emblems, the unleavened bread representing the sinlessness, the purity, of our dear Redeemer – the fruit of the Vine representing the blood of the New Covenant. We noticed how necessary is this bread from heaven; it is indeed bread of eternal life – none can ever get eternal life without it. (John 6:53.) We considered how we had already eaten the true bread, Christ, and how we appropriated his virtue and merit – by accepting by faith, as his gift of love, the blessings secured for us by his death – "a ransom for all."

We considered the Lord's statement concerning the "cup" of which our Lord said, "This is my blood of the New Covenant, shed for many for the remission of sins." We saw how our Lord's words contradict the words of many who speak in his name, and who declare that his blood, his death, has nothing to do with forgiveness of sins. We saw, too, that his words contradict the teachings of some who declare that all men will be everlastingly saved, and who fail to note that there are special conditions specified; viz., the New Covenant. We noticed also that his words contradict equally the view of others who claim that all except the "little flock" of this Gospel age will be eternally lost; for our Master declares that his blood was shed for the remission of the sins of many under the terms of the New Covenant.

Then the emblems were partaken of, and we departed for our homes, after singing,

"Nearer, my God, to thee, nearer to thee" – thinking meanwhile upon what our Lord endured for us, and judging that it is but a reasonable service now that we suffer with him and lay down our lives for the brethren in such little services as we can render; thus testifying our love and devotion to him who redeemed us.