page 369
December 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

SEMI-MONTHLY.
VOL. XXII.DECEMBER 1, 1901.No. 23.
CONTENTS.

Views from the Watch Tower
The Czar of Russia and the World's Peace 371
The Troubles of the Scientists 373
The Universal Meridian 373
Beloved Son Timothy's Return 374
The Justice of Our Contention 374
The Voices of the Three Signs 375
Christ Our Passover Was Sacrificed for Us 380
Crossing the Red Sea 382

'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 370

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.

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FROM FOREIGN COUNTRIES BY FOREIGN MONEY ORDERS, ONLY. SPECIAL
TERMS TO THE LORD'S POOR, AS FOLLOWS: –

Those of the interested who, by reason of old age, or other infirmity or adversity, are unable to pay for the TOWER will be supplied FREE, if they send a Postal Card each December, stating their case and requesting the paper. We are not only willing, but anxious, that all such be on our list continually.

ENTERED AS SECOND CLASS MAIL MATTER AT ALLEGHENY, PA., POST OFFICE.

PILGRIM VISITS ARE FREE OF ALL CHARGES.

of the friends have refrained from requesting "Pilgrim" visits because they supposed they would be expected to contribute for his railway fare and also for his support. This is a mistake: the services of the preaching "Pilgrims" laboring under the auspices of the WATCH TOWER BIBLE & TRACT SOCIETY are absolutely without charge; – nor do they take up any collections. The Society pays their railway and all other expenses out of its funds, which are all voluntary donations, from such as are able and anxious to serve thus.

All we ask of the friends visited is that they provide a parlor, hall, school-house or church building for the meetings and that they board and lodge the "Pilgrim" during the two or three days of his visit. We attend to all else.

RENEW REQUESTS FOR PILGRIM-SERVICE, 1902.

The Pilgrim routes are made out months ahead; so it is too late to write us, as some do, when they learn from last page that a Pilgrim is coming to their vicinity. If you desire visits write us a Postal Card (or on a card of that size) answering the following questions: (a) Have you regular meetings now? (b) How many usually attend? (c) Who are the chosen leaders of the class? (d) Did the class vote its desire for Pilgrim visits? (e) Are you able and willing to secure a suitable room for private meetings? (f) Could you arrange also for one public meeting? and what number could probably be gathered?

You can answer briefly, thus: (a) Yes. (b) 14. (c) John Smith and Amos Brown. (d) Yes. (e) Yes. (f) Yes: 100 to 300.

When you see a notice of a "Pilgrim Visit" near you and do not know the meeting address, enquire of us by Postal card immediately. Those arranging for "Pilgrim meetings" will please notify us early respecting their arrangements. If off the railroad, name nearest station and further conveyance.

[R2914 : page 371]

VIEWS FROM THE WATCH TOWER.

THE CZAR OF RUSSIA AND THE WORLD'S PEACE.

THE FRANKFURTER ZEITUNG, one of the most reliable newspapers of Europe, is the authority for the following report of an interview between the Czar and a German Admiral, while the Czar as the guest of Emperor William witnessed the maneuvers of the German fleet in the Baltic Sea, – the Admiral being in command of the fleet. It is important as showing the opposing arguments on the preservation of the world's peace, which all men agree is desirable – essential.

We agree with the Czar's line of argument, but hold that in the nature of things it is impossible of realization. The arming and drilling and building of ships will continue until the people of Europe are thoroughly awakened, when they will refuse to be fought and taxed, and a revolution in favor of Socialism will ensue – resulting, however, in Anarchy, as the Scriptures indicate, preparing the way for Christ's Millennial Kingdom.

The conversation, as reported by the Zeitung follows:

Admiral – Your Majesty is pleased to confer too great an honor upon an old sea dog like me. I am delighted to think that your Majesty received a favorable impression of our army and navy, for, your Majesty may rest assured, we strain every nerve to keep the army and navy abreast of the times, which is the ideal thing for every good government to do.

The Czar – There I differ with you, Admiral. According to my own views the ideal thing to do would be to reduce standing armies and navies instead of keeping on increasing their strength. This so-called preparedness for war – arming on a great, and ever greater, scale is overburdening the peoples of Europe. All governments should strive to lessen their expenses for the army and navy. As long as they do the opposite, they are simply upholding and perpetuating an intolerable situation.

The Admiral – A humane and extremely generous thought, your Majesty, but –

The Czar – (interrupting) – not a thought only, Admiral. I am devoting my life to the realization of the peace idea.

The Admiral – Indeed, your Majesty's big-hearted endeavors permit of no misinterpretation, but the other powers, your Majesty, the other powers. Your Majesty won't believe for a moment that the other powers will find it to their interest to reduce their armies and navies!

The Czar – I am convinced that a condition such as I have outlined will serve the true interest and conform to the just aspirations of all the powers.

The Admiral – May it please your Majesty, don't you think that a perfect army and navy, an army and navy ready to move against the enemy at a moment's notice, so to speak – doesn't your Majesty think that such weapons as those constitute the best guarantee of peace?

WAR PREPAREDNESS MUST STOP.

The Czar – In order to establish true and permanent peace it is absolutely necessary that the nations' [R2915 : page 371] war-preparedness, as constituted by their armies and navies, be limited. The nations durst not go on forever increasing their war strength and heaping up war material. There should be no further progress, so-called, in the art of killing men and animals, destroying ships, interfering with commerce, and laying waste provinces. All that has to stop. The nations want a rest; they have been clamoring for the cessation of war scares, produced by the announcement that A has better guns than B, or that X is building more and better ships than Y can afford to do – they have demanded a letup in war preparedness for twenty years! On that point the civilized nations are fully agreed, and international policy, my dear Admiral, will eventually compel the permanent peace. Policy, I say, and not armies and navies.

Admiral – I beg to assure your Majesty that my government, like that of St. Petersburg, strives for peace most earnestly. To preserve peace is its sincerest wish, believe me, your Majesty. But to preserve peace our army and navy must be in the best [R2915 : page 372] possible shape; we must increase and augment them steadily to keep pace with the growth of population and the armament of other peoples. Your Majesty knows the old saying: Si vis pacem para bellum. God forbid that we increase the army and navy with the idea of carrying war into our neighbors' land. It's all done in the interest of peace. For peace's sake we are willing to make any sacrifice.

PEACE NOT WITHIN REACH.

The Czar – Yes, I heard this story before. You compel your people to bleed itself to death to furnish ways and means for keeping up a tremendous force on land and sea, and for adding to it constantly in a manner heretofore, happily, unknown. Neither Napoleon I. nor Frederick the Great, neither Alexander nor Peter, neither Louis XIV., nor our own Catherine ever dreamt of such armies and navies in war time as are now established while Europe enjoys the blessings of peace. But all your arming and the whole immense apparatus afoot and afloat, eating millions day by day, don't amount to a row of pins as an actual guarantee of peace. The nations of Europe are today as far as ever from declaring the permanency of peace. Despite your armies and navies, the blessings of a world's peace are not yet within reach.

Admiral – True enough, your Majesty, armed peace demands great sacrifice; we have to pay heavily for the maintenance of peace by a grand army and navy, but your Majesty, the people are glad to contribute to the welfare of Europe even at considerable expense.

PUBLIC WELFARE THREATENED.

The Czar – Maybe, Admiral, but the thing can't go on! The sacrifices demanded of the taxpayer are constantly growing, financial troubles, owing to the expense of the army and navy, are increasing day by day. I tell you, this thing spells disaster. The public welfare is threatened at its roots.

The Admiral – Your Majesty is pleased to leave many things, stamping armed preparedness as a blessing to the people, out of your calculations. Big armies and grand navies compel the nations to work and strive; they banish idleness and call for honest competition. Nowadays every people in Europe is trying to produce the best weapon, the finest ships.

The Czar – But it's not humanity's business to produce means of destruction. We were put upon this earth to build up, not to do the other thing. All the money spent for the army and navy above a certain necessary amount is money diverted from its real purpose, money invested in unproductive labor.

Admiral – Your Majesty was pleased to admire our fine quick-firing guns; you have seen those mysteries of the sea, boats that travel under water, the iron-clads yonder, our incomparable flotilla of torpedo-boats – all these wonders of twentieth century technique, are they not evidence of marvelous progress? Doesn't your Majesty recognize that our people give their best thought, their brightest endeavors to the fatherland? I repeat it, in my humble opinion our army and navy is the best guarantee of peace, while the money invested therein pays abundant interest by the maintenance of peace. The people's money could not be more profitably invested than in securing peace as we do.

BEST TO-DAY, USELESS TO-MORROW.

The Czar (shaking his head) – Indeed, and what about those hundreds of millions you are spending for means of destruction, to-day labeled the "best and latest," while to-morrow you must admit that they are valueless because something new, something to offset them, was invented? A fine investment, Admiral.

Admiral – I will not deny that we are frequently doomed to disappointment of the sort your Majesty referred to. But if your Majesty will permit me, I dare say the competitions of inventors benefits our home industry and consequently the people that live by industry and commerce.

The Czar – Your argument is illogical, Admiral. Powder and guns, torpedoes and sub-marine vessels, ships, not destined for commerce – all such things are false values; the persons engaged in their manufacture contribute neither to the world's betterment nor to their own happiness. Ironclads, grapeshot, swords, and lances are not agents of progress by any means; their wholesale manufacture presupposes a deficit in the making of articles that stand for culture and economical advancement. Besides, it is easy to prove that the system of armed preparedness is largely responsible for the financial depressions that crop up from time to time in all countries turned into camps.

The Admiral – But, your Majesty, what has preserved peace during the last twenty and more years, if it was not our grand army? If we hadn't been so well prepared as to number of soldiers and ships, as to the latest pattern of guns and other war material, hostilities might have broken out on several occasions.

The Czar – Hypothesis, my dear Admiral! There isn't an atom of proof for what you say. I am convinced, on the other hand, that your grand collection of war material is a permanent menace to peace.

The Admiral – On that point I beg to differ with your Majesty, and the people, I am sure, think as I do. They love the army and value it for the protection it renders the nation. And for these services they are willing to pay.

The Czar – It is unfortunate that you and armed war preparedness enthusiasts generally will not see things in their proper light. As a matter of fact, standing armies and big navies are obstructing national development everywhere, and the people, staggering under the weight of overtaxation for army purposes, hate and loathe the institution, while fearing it at the same time. I tell you, Admiral, if things go on as they have been going, the catastrophe which you hope to avert will occur sooner than you think. The disaster will be awful – the thought of it might make an honest man shudder.

The Admiral – I beg your Majesty's pardon. I am only an old sea dog trying to do my duty. Now duty, as I take it, compels the state to do everything in its power to keep the army abreast of the times, increasing and equipping it in the best manner possible, so that, in the hour of danger –

MAY INVOLVE THE WORLD.

The Czar – No, no, no. It's the state's duty to avert war by other means than by laying up war material, that must necessarily lead to war. Don't you [R2915 : page 373] know that the war of the future, of which we stand in such dread, may involve the whole world?

The Admiral – Is your Majesty thoroughly in earnest?

The Czar – Most thoroughly. I regard it as my sacred duty to secure permanent peace for the world by persuading the nations to disarm. At the same time I am not blind to the fact that this grand purpose can only be achieved by the co-operation of all civilized peoples.

This ended the conversation, the Czar rising and giving the signal for the dismissal of the fleet.

THE TROUBLES OF THE SCIENTISTS.

Those who reject the divine revelation, the Bible, are continually in trouble – contradicting themselves and each other. The following from the Chicago Inter-Ocean will trouble evolutionists. Yet the learned Professor by the change noted is, however, probably no nearer the truth than before. He confuses his reason and handicaps it by assuming a false premise, rejecting the inspired one.

The article mentioned follows: –

MONKEYS WERE MEN, NOT MEN MONKEYS.

That Professor Ernst Haeckel, the distinguished German naturalist, and the world's greatest living advocate of the biological theory of evolution, has reversed his views of half a century and taken a stand with Professor Rudolf Virchow in opposition to Darwinism is the startling announcement made in Paris.

It is stated that during his expedition to Java, begun last year, Professor Haeckel has found striking evidence in support of the theory, advanced for the first time only a few months ago by Virchow, that monkeys are descended from man, and not man from monkeys. That, in fact, monkeys are nothing less than degenerate humans.

"If Professor Haeckel has made any such discovery," said Dr. Edward Grant Conklin, professor [R2916 : page 373] of zoology at the University of Pennsylvania, "or if he has recanted his former multitudinous writings and lecturings sufficiently to make any such statement it means that one of the most remarkable revolutions in biological science has taken place.

"I can not credit the announcement. It seems too extraordinary to believe that Haeckel, of all men, should take this stand. I do not know if he has returned from Java, but he went there to study and make further researches into the pithecanthropus erectus, discovered by Dr. Dubois, with a view to further substantiate the theories he laid down in his 'Phylogeny,' tracing the descent of man.

"Haeckel may have discovered fresh remains of the pithecanthropus; if so, their nature has not been announced, and I can not speculate upon them, but any fresh finds along that line can not fail to be of the utmost interest to scientists."

To understand thoroughly the revolutionary change accredited to Professor Haeckel, it is only necessary to review briefly the history of his part in the exploitation of Darwin's theory and the causes that led to his recent exploring visit to Java.

Ernst Haeckel, now professor of zoology at Jena University, was the first distinguished scientist to fully accept Darwin's theory when the "Origin of Species" was published. The scientific world was trembling on the brink of the revolution he caused later by the publication of "The Descent of Man," when Haeckel anticipated Darwin in his most far-reaching conclusions, and in a measure prepared the world for the startling doctrines hinted at in the "Origin of Species" and fully promulgated in "The Descent of Man."

Since then Haeckel has been the most advanced among the evolutionists. He has long asserted that the history of man is complete in all its essential details, and that all that now remains to be done is to fill in here and there such concrete evidence as zoological and paleontological research shall reveal.

In his "Systematic Phylogeny," a monumental work in three volumes, he made a theoretic systematic arrangement of the vegetable and animal worlds living and extinct on the basis of the law of evolution. The work has been called a vast pedigree tree, with man at the top and the lowest non-nucleated cell at the bottom. In this pedigree there were no empty or unaccounted spaces. Haeckel constructed hypothetical animals or organisms, and to him, in theory, there were no missing links.

Twenty-five years before the discovery of Dubois' pithecanthropus Haeckel had forseen in his phylogeny such a creature, and he had christened it "pithecanthropus allus," or the apelike man before language. He gave to it a place midway in the order of life between the highest ape and the lowest human.

In every library, in every language devoted to zoological works, there are books by the shelf-full bearing the name of Haeckel. They stand beside and support the "Origin of the Species" and "Descent of Man" and "Man's Place in Nature" (Huxley). Haeckel has been the apostle of Darwinism, the most trenchant fighter in the years when the theory was battling for a right to existence in the scientific world. Virchow, the world-famous pathologist, found Haeckel in his fight against Darwinism, and now that the champion should go to the other extreme is incomprehensible to those who have followed his career.

Professor Ernst Haeckel is now sixty-seven years old, and is a native of Potsdam. For thirty-five years he made his home in the quiet, sleepy little town at Jena, except for occasional expeditions and trips to scientific congresses. He has been a prolific writer, and is a most accomplished artist. All the drawings and illustrations for his works have been made by himself, and their marvelous accuracy has made his books of two-fold value. The extravagance to which he has carried some of his theories and the imagination he has infused into his driest and most scientific dissertations have in a measure cut him off from absolute confidence on the part of his followers, but no naturalist has earned fame by harder work or deeper study.

– Chicago Inter-Ocean.
THE UNIVERSAL MERIDIAN.

The meridian of Greenwich, England, is everywhere accepted as the starting line from which to reckon longitude and time all over the earth, and all our maps and astronomical calculations are made accordingly. Suggestions have been made from time to time, however, that a better starting-line might be [R2916 : page 374] found. Some of the Italian scientists, for example, have seriously objected to Greenwich, on account of the clouds and bad weather that frequently interfere with astronomical observations there. They recommend that the civilized world adopt Jerusalem as the standard meridian, because the skies are clearer there, and the possibility of making Palestine neutral territory would eliminate political objections.

[R2916 : page 374]

"BELOVED SON TIMOTHY'S RETURN."

WE HAVE PLEASURE in announcing the safe return of dear Brother E. C. Henninges (and his faithful helpmate) via the steamer "Etruria," on November 16. During his absence, of nearly two years, his energy on behalf of the harvest work in Great Britain has been greatly blessed by the Master, as reports from the British Branch from time to time have abundantly demonstrated. The work there is on a far better footing than it has ever been in the past; and under the care of our new representative there, Brother Jesse Hemmery, it will, we doubt not, continue to prosper and gather much ripe "wheat" into the Lord's "garner."

As for Brother and Sister Henninges, we can readily find room for them in the Allegheny office. Indeed the general work is spreading grandly (and we expect it to expand much more during the next six years) and the addition of these efficient helpers to our present force is quite opportune. We trust it will give the editor an opportunity to proceed with the preparation of the VI and VII Volumes of Millennial Dawn, from which he has been greatly hindered by the expansion of the various departments of the work during the past two years.

The dear friends in Great Britain will miss our dear Brother and his untiring energy on their behalf; but we trust they will find in dear Brother Hemmery a faithful and good substitute. We commend him to them all. We have every confidence in respect to his character and ability – else we would not have esteemed him the Lord's choice for the position he now occupies. We urge that the British friends support him by their prayers and co-operation accordingly.

[R2916 : page 374]

THE JUSTICE OF OUR CONTENTION.

WE TRUST that hundreds of our subscribers in all parts of these United States have written letters or postal cards (or gotten up petitions) for the protection of the public's rights under the laws as they are, and as they have existed for thirty years. Each one is responsible in this matter. Let each do his duty, and then be content with the results whatever they may be. We urge all who appreciate the present law, and who have not already done so, to send a letter or card at once. See page 367 of last issue. We give below our Appeal, which has been unjustly refused.

Allegheny, Pa., U.S.A., October 11, 1901. James A. Grier, Esq., Postmaster, Allegheny, Pa. Dear Sir: –

Your favor of the 4th is at hand, enclosing a copy of the Hon. E. C. Madden's instructions to your office, citing us to show cause, as the publishers "why the Millennial Dawn series should not be excluded from second-class rates of postage, on the ground that it has the characteristics of a book."

To this we reply: That the term "book" is a very broad one. In legal usage a "paper book" is a pamphlet which may vary in size from five to five hundred pages. In the usage of the United States Patent Office the term "book" is applied to any pamphlet or printed matter of one page or upwards. In the usage of the United States Post Office, ever since the establishment of the second-class, the term "book" has been applied only to printed matter substantially bound – in cloth or leather.

A reference to Webster's Unabridged Dictionary and the Standard Dictionary shows the original distinction between the terms "pamphlet" and "book" to have been that a pamphlet consisted of a number of sheets of paper stitched together, not substantially bound, nor too cumbersome to be held in the hand; while the term "book" applied to literature in substantial binding, and particularly to such as was too heavy for use in the hand.

In modern usage the rulings of the United States Post Office during the past thirty years, that any [R2917 : page 374] printed document in substantial binding, whether of few or of many pages, constitutes a book, while the same pages unbound constitute a pamphlet, have become practically a law. Nor can we conceive of a better method of distinction between books and pamphlets than this. Under this law, as it has been interpreted, we think wisely, justly, the binding, and not the number of pages, decided the matter. To change this arrangement, and to deny that the binding distinguishes what is a book from what is a pamphlet, and to arbitrarily decree that a certain number of pages should constitute a book, while a less number would constitute a pamphlet, would involve the Department in an inconsistency, should it attempt to decide as heretofore that pamphlets could not be such if put up in substantial binding, though acceptable as to number of pages.

Respecting the issues of our journal, known as the "Millennial Dawn" series of special issues. These have been issued under the present laws of the United States since 1886. They are of different-sized pages from our regular issues, and were put into this form for the greater convenience of our readers. They each represented several issues of our semi-monthly, Post Office rulings to the effect that one issue could not bear date as representing several having been promulgated since any of these pamphlets issued.

We hold that these pamphlets are entirely within our rights under the law; that nothing in the law in any sense of the word restricts us, either as respects the number of pages or the size of the page. These back numbers of our journal are constantly in demand amongst our subscribers and their friends, and [R2917 : page 375] any restriction of our rights and privileges as heretofore construed and as defined under the law will make serious hardship and righteous indignation amongst these over twenty-five thousand intelligent adults whose case we represent in this paper.

The fact that these special issues of our journal have a colored cover, while our regular issues have not, should not be construed as a violation of the law, because there is no law governing the subject, except the restriction that the cover should not be a substantial one. As a matter of fact, the leading journals of this and every land are in the habit of issuing, especially in the holiday season, special numbers, which usually have colored covers, as well as other features distinguishing them from the regular issues.

Moreover, the Post Office Department has for years recognized as second-class matter what is known as the "Official Postal Guide," issued monthly under various colored covers, and ranging in pages from 32 to 1132. It will not do to say that this is a Government publication, for that would not be true; the most that can be said for it is that it is a publication very convenient to the Post Office Department, one which saves the Government from getting out a publication of its own. But even if it were a Government publication, what jurist would undertake to say that the Government is superior to its own laws, and that the law governing the meanest citizen does not govern also the highest one, and every official and every act of the Government? If the annual issues of the "Postal Guide" are not books, but pamphlets, then surely the Millennial Dawn series of special issues of our journal, less than half the size of the annual "Postal Guide," are also pamphlets and not books.

Are we told that the Post Office Department could frank the "Postal Guide," and thus send it through the mails free? We reply that it can not; because there is no law of the United States permitting them so to do. Before this could be done it would be necessary that Congress should pass a law to that effect. Likewise, of course, Congress could pass a law permitting all religious matter to go through the mails free, but we do not anticipate that Congress will ever pass either of these laws. The publishers of the "Postal Guide" can as well afford to pay postage as can other publishers throughout the United States.

Further, we submit that no law-making power claims to enact retroactive laws, that will go back of the time of their making, and take hold upon legal transactions of the past. If, therefore, the United States Post Office Department should now or at any time conclude that it has the right and the power to make new laws and regulations these, in all justice, must take hold as for the future, and can not in any sense of the word affect our vested rights as represented in electroplates and large editions of our special issues published under the full sanction of the law and of the Post Office Department. At very most, the new law or regulation could forbid us from henceforth publishing such special editions of our journal, or otherwise regulating as respects the number of pages, whether they shall be cut or uncut, and whether they must be of uniform color as to cover.

In the above plea we have made no claim for preference of consideration on the ground of our publications being strictly religious, because, although we believe that this plea would have weight in the minds of all moral and well-intentioned people, we prefer to stand strictly upon the basis of our rights under the law.

We understand that under the new law the Post Office Department intends henceforth to restrict lodge and society publications to literature or news, prohibiting the publication of advertisements. We wish to call the attention of the Department to the fact that our journal and its special issues would all come under this head also. Our subscribers are recognized as members of our Society – the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society, chartered by State of Pennsylvania, and our publications contain no advertisements whatever, but are strictly confined to Biblical exegesis, cultivation of good morals, and in general the publication of the Gospel – "good news," "good tidings" – the message which is new every morning and fresh every evening, and which more than any other news in the world is helpful to, not only the Lord's people, but in general to civilization – "Good tidings [news] of great joy, which shall be unto all people."

Trusting for a just and generous consideration of our plea foregoing, we remain, Respectfully yours,

Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society.

[R2917 : page 375]

THE VOICES OF THE THREE SIGNS.

WHEN PREPARING the Sunday School lessons relating to Moses and his two presentations of himself to the Israelites, as their deliverer from Egyptian bondage, we noted the fact that "these things were written aforetime for our admonition upon whom the ends of the ages are come." (1 Cor. 10:11.) And, considering the matter from this standpoint, we perceived, as we had never done before, that the three signs by which the Israelites were convinced that God's deliverance of them was at hand, at Moses' second presentation, must have been intended to typify some corresponding three signs or testimonies at the second advent of Christ; testimonies which will be convincing to the true spiritual Israelites. In the type these three signs or testimonies preceded the plagues upon the Egyptians; and this in the anti-type, must mean that the three signs or testimonies to spiritual Israel respecting the second advent of our Lord, and respecting the great deliverance which he is to accomplish, must precede the plagues, the great time of trouble, coming upon the world in general shortly.

At first we were perplexed, and said to ourself: "The Scriptures clearly show us that we are now 'in the days of the Son of Man;' our journal has borne as its sub-title, Herald of Christ's Presence, since its institution, 1879; yet where are these three signs? Already twenty-seven years of the forty-year harvest [R2917 : page 376] have passed, and but thirteen remain, in the last four of which we confidently expect the plagues upon the world – anti-typical Egypt. Where are these signs or testimonies, which the type teaches us we should expect at this time, to convince all the true Israelites?"

For a time we were inclined to look for miraculous tokens, but subsequently realized that this would be out of the Lord's order, as the anti-type is always on a higher and grander scale than the type: as for instance the typical Passover lamb but feebly foreshadowed the Lamb of God, and the great things accomplished through his sacrifice. Feeling confident of the times in which we are living, "in the parousia of the Son of Man," we concluded that in all probability these signs had already been given, or were in process of giving at the present time. Still we could not recognize them, and feeling that the matter must now be to the Lord's household "meat in due season," we besought the Lord earnestly and repeatedly for light upon the subject, while continuing our studies. No light coming, we mentioned the matter to the Bible House family at the dinner table, requesting the prayers of all upon the subject, and that if any had suggestions to offer they would feel free to present them. Seemingly it was in line with the divine purpose that we should thus come to the point of making confession of inability to solve the riddle, and that our reliance for wisdom was wholly upon the Lord: for within two hours after this acknowledgment the entire matter became clear and lucid to our mind, as we shall endeavor now to lay it before you all.

(1) Our Lord declares Moses to have been, in some particulars, in some of his transactions, a type of himself, saying, "Moses wrote of me." Moses himself declared, "A prophet [teacher] shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me." Peter quotes this last expression in his sermon, and emphasizes it. (John 5:46; Deut. 18:15; Acts 3:22.) Moses did not typify Christ in all of his doings, however, nor was his life as a whole a type of the life of Christ. For instance, in his smiting of the rock, contrary to the divine command, he became a type of those of Christ's followers who put him to an open shame, and who, in consequence, will die the Second Death; and as a type of these Moses was not permitted to enter into the land of promise. (Num. 20:11; Deut. 32:51,52; Heb. 10:29.) He typified Jehovah at times also; but in the present instance we are specially interested in considering his conduct with the Israelites in connection with their deliverance from the bondage of Egypt. In this type we see him distinctly as a representative of Christ Jesus. Moses was rich, a prince in high honor, learned in all the learning of his times, but for Israel's sake he renounced these, left them all, and they being bondmen, he took his place amongst them, to be their leader and deliverer. How like this is to the description given us in the Scriptures of our Lord's course! He left the glory of the heavenly condition and spiritual plane of being; he took a bondman's form and was found in fashion as a man. He came to deliver his brethren from bondage. – Phil. 2:6-8, Diaglott.

When Moses came to his own people they rejected him, and he fled for his life to the land of Midian, from whence he came to them a second time. So Christ came to his own, and his own received him not (John 1:12); and he went into a far country, even heaven itself, from whence he has now, a second time, come, and will deliver all who are true Israelites indeed from the bondage of sin and death. Moses was forty years in coming to the point where he offered himself to Israel the first time; then he was absent from them an equal period of time, forty years, and came again and delivered them. There is a type or parallel in this time feature also; it illustrates the length of the Jewish and the Gospel ages, as being equal. From the time of the beginning of typical Israel as a nation, waiting for the coming of Messiah, down to the time when Jesus actually presented himself, was a period of 1845 years, and from that time, when he died and left them, until the period which the Scriptures show us marked his second coming (October, 1874) was a like period of 1845 years, – corresponding exactly to the two periods at which Moses offered himself in the type.*

*MILLENNIAL DAWN, VOL. II. CHAP. VII.
THE VOICE OF THE FIRST SIGN.

(2) At Moses' second presentation to Israel he did not address them personally and directly, as at the first, God having said to him, "Aaron shall be thy prophet or mouthpiece, and thou shalt be a god unto Aaron." This item of the type would seem to imply just what we see to be the fact of the case now, viz., that the Lord Jesus does not address himself to the true Israelites in person now, as at the first advent, but through his agent, through a mouth-piece. Aaron, the mouth-piece or agent of the Lord, we would understand to represent the Royal Priesthood – those of the Lord's consecrated people still in the flesh, still sacrificing, – who have not yet passed beyond the vail into glory. The type, then, seems to say that the signs or testimonies which will convince all true Israelites now living respecting the presence of the Lord and his mighty power to deliver, his ultimate victory over Satan, sin and death, will be of or from our present Lord, but by or through the living members of his body, his brethren, represented in Aaron.

(3) The first sign or testimony to Israel was the casting of the rod upon the ground, and its becoming a serpent, and the taking of the serpent by the tail, and its becoming a rod again in the hands of Aaron. It was Moses' rod, and Aaron was merely his representative in every act. The natural Israelite merely saw this as a miracle, and discerned in it no teaching; but the spiritual Israelite is not to expect a larger rod and a larger serpent, as the anti-type, but should expect to comprehend the meaning of the rod and of the serpent as an anti-typical instruction or testimony today.

A rod symbolizes authority. Moses' rod was frequently used in connection with the plagues, as well as in connection with the signs, as signifying divine authority. A serpent is a symbol of evil – of sin and all its consequences, evil in general. The lesson for the spiritual Israelite today is that he is now to understand that all the evil there is in the world is [R2917 : page 377] the result, directly or indirectly, of God's having let go of his rod or authority; and they are to understand further that it is God's intention or purpose, as it is also his promise, to take hold upon the present evil conditions, which have lasted now more than six thousand years, and to bring order out of confusion: – to re-establish his authority in his own hand.

These acts or signs are said to have "voices" or to be testimonies. (Exod. 4:8,9.) Hence our query must be, Is this sign or testimony now being given to God's people throughout the world? We answer, Yes. Has it been always recognized and presented thus? We answer, No. Was it ever thus presented before this harvest-time? We answer, No. Heretofore it has been a matter of speculation amongst peoples and theologians of all classes and shades of Christian belief, but a question without an answer, – Why did God permit evil in the world? Some have blasphemously held that God has caused the evil, that good might follow; but this God himself most emphatically denies, and everything pertaining to his character refutes it. He declares that every good and every perfect gift is of him, with whom is no changeableness or variableness. "His work is perfect." Others have claimed that a conflict is in operation, between God and Satan, between good and evil, and that each side is doing its utmost to conquer the other – with evil and Satan predominant in the world, on account of which it is spoken of as "the present evil world," in which there is "none righteous, no, not one." But whatever the standpoint of view, it has been confusion only, until the harvest-time, when the true light upon the subject began to shine forth, showing that when sin entered the world God gave mankind over, let them take their course, let the rod of divine authority drop, "rested from his own work," permitting sin and evil to flourish – not, however, intending that it should flourish forever as a serpent, but fully intending, predestinating, and even foretelling, that in due time he would set up his Kingdom in the person of the Messiah, who should lay hold upon that old Serpent, the devil and Satan, and restrain his power. Showing, too, that he will ultimately bring all evil conditions back to subjection and harmony with the divine authority and law, – destroying the evil connected therewith. This teaching, then, is the sign whose "voice" or testimony was typified by Aaron casting the rod upon the ground, its becoming a serpent, and his taking it back into his hand again. How much grander the anti-typical teaching than the typical sign! How much more forceful! Who of the true Israelites who has heard this testimony is any longer in doubt respecting the speedy deliverance of all of God's people from the power of Satan, sin and death?

We would avoid personality as far as possible, but believe it to be in the interest of the truth and of the true Israelites that we point out that this sign has already been given. Zion's Watch Tower and Herald of Christ's Presence was founded in 1879, and the "voice" therefrom, to the true Israel of God, announced that the second advent of our Lord, as the deliverer of the world, had already taken place – that he was present but invisible, a spirit being not possible to be seen by any, even his Church, until they should be "changed" and made like him in the first resurrection. The message further declared that he was present for the purpose of establishing his Kingdom, and delivering his saints and the whole groaning creation from the bondage of corruption, – as many as will obey him. And it is very remarkable that very shortly a special number of this journal was issued, bearing the significant title, "Food for Thinking Christians, WHY EVIL WAS PERMITTED."* This voice or testimony was spread abroad amongst the spiritual Israelites in an extraordinary manner, – over a million and a half copies being circulated through the mails and at church-doors in the United States, Canada and Great Britain. And the voice or testimony of this first sign, token, teaching, is still being repeated from one to another of the Lord's people throughout the world, and now in various languages. In that pamphlet for the first time, so far as we know, was shown that the evil in the world, the bondage to sin and death, and the reign of iniquity and the various oppressions to which the whole groaning creation is subject, are the results of God's having let go his authority (rod), and not the result of his inability to hold the authority, nor in any sense the outworking of the authority in his hand. It showed also how complete will be the restraint of evil and its complete annihilation when again the Lord shall take unto himself his great power and reign. Could there possibly be a greater or a grander anti-type for the sign which Moses and Aaron presented to Israel through the rod and the serpent? Is not the truth on this subject much more convincing to the spiritual Israelite today than any natural signs or wonders or miracles could possibly be? Does not the knowledge now granted the Lord's people respecting the divine plan of the ages, and its purpose, and the result, satisfy our longings as nothing else could do, and assure our hearts that deliverance is nigh?

*Since this publication two other tracts have been issued, bearing portions of the same title; No.12, "The Divine Plan of the Ages: Why Evil was Permitted," No.52, "Food for Thinking Christians: Our Lord's Return," etc.
THE VOICE OF THE SECOND SIGN.

(4) The second sign to be given to the Israelites was that of the leprous hand. Hidden in the bosom, when revealed it was leprous; but when hidden again, and revealed a second time, it was whole. Again we say that the natural Israelite discerned nothing but the natural sign, but it was intended of God that the spiritual Israelite should discern a much grander lesson, and that a testimony through this grander lesson would be still more convincing to him than was the typical sign to the typical Israelite. A hand is a symbol of power. In this case the hand represented divine power. Leprosy is a symbol of sin. The teaching, therefore, would seem to be that divine power was first manifested without sin or imperfection or blemish; secondly, that the same divine power, hidden for a time, was afterward manifest in sin and imperfection; and thirdly, that the same divine power, hidden again for a time, will subsequently be manifest without sin.

What teaching or testimony is this? We answer that it is in harmony with the previous teaching respecting the permission of evil, but does not apply [R2917 : page 378] to evil in general, but rather to sin in particular; does not apply to the world in general, but specially applies to the people of God, – to those whom God uses as his agents or representatives, his hand, his power in the world. God's power originally was manifested unblemished. But during this Gospel age he has been represented by his consecrated people, the members of the body of Christ, who are his ambassadors and representatives; but they are leprous, actually imperfect, though reckonedly perfect in Christ. As the world sees them they are blemished, but from the divine standpoint their blemishes are all hidden, covered with the merit of Christ's righteousness. Nevertheless, these have been the hand or power of God in the world for more than eighteen centuries; but by and by they are to be received into his bosom again, and "changed" in the first resurrection, so that when manifest again in the future they will be without sin, "without spot or wrinkle or any such thing," and will again be used of the Lord as his agent in stretching forth his rod and bringing the plagues upon Egypt, and delivering the residue of God's people from the bondage of sin and death.

And is this also a sign or a testimony peculiar to this time in which we live, and was this subject never clearly seen before? We answer, it is peculiar to our day, and was never clearly seen before. In the past many have seen something of justification, something of sanctification, something of a coming deliverer; but never before have these subjects been seen in the clear light in which they are now seen as related to each other. Never before was the relationship distinctly seen between justification and sanctification and deliverance; that justification is of divine grace, accepted through faith; that sanctification implies works and sacrifice, based upon justification; and that to these justified and consecrated ones, who faithfully overcome, by the grace of God in Christ, shall be granted a share in the "glory, honor and immortality" of the divine nature in the first resurrection.

But has the voice or sign of this testimony gone forth in any particular channel, as did the preceding voice or testimony? We answer, Yes: in the Millennial Dawn series of volumes, the first of which was published in 1886. The united testimony of these relates to the Church, showing original sin, the first step out of it into justification, through faith in Christ, the second step of sanctification, and sacrifice, and the ultimate change, in the first resurrection to the divine nature, and glory and joint-heirship. These volumes deal specially with this subject from its various standpoints, the ransom-sacrifice of our Lord, on account of which the cleansing will come to us in due time, being everywhere prominently set forth; and also the fact that no absolute purity is to be expected until the Lord shall take us to himself in our "change."

Supplemental to the teaching of the Dawns on this subject, and to assist in emphasizing their "voice" and making clear their testimony, the Pilgrim service has been instituted under which various brethren travel from place to place explaining and demonstrating the lesson taught by the leprous hand and its healing, and all of our readers, having heard the testimony are daily giving it forth to others.

THE VOICE OF THE THIRD SIGN.

(5) Another sign was to be given, the Lord clearly intimating that it would be necessary, and that all of his true people would not hear or heed the "voice" of the first two testimonies. To natural Israel the third sign was the taking of the water from the river, and pouring it upon the earth, where it became blood. They saw merely the sign, the miracle; they read not its meaning, as the spiritual Israelite must seek to do. In explanation of the symbolical teaching of this type we suggest that water is here, as elsewhere, a symbol of the truth; and that the earth is here, as elsewhere, a symbol of society.* The pouring of the water upon the earth would ordinarily mean the refreshment of the earth, a blessing; and the pouring of the truth upon society would ordinarily be expected to mean a blessing to society; but in the symbol the water turned to blood, repulsive, abhorrent, symbolizing death; and this, in the anti-type, would signify that in the present time the pouring out of the truth upon society will produce an effect contrary to what might ordinarily have been expected. Society, civilization, has been claiming, especially within the past century, to be searching high and low for the truth. But this type says that the time has come when these professed truth-seekers (the word science signifies truth) will reject the truth, disdain it, and to them it will seem obnoxious, loathsome, intolerable. Our readers will here possibly call to mind our Lord's words respecting this present time, "The sun shall be darkened and the moon shall be turned into blood." We have elsewhere shown the significance of this:+ that the moon is the symbol of the Jewish Law, as the sun is the symbol of the Gospel message; and that the Gospel message will become darkness to the eyes of society in general, through the sophistries, higher criticism, evolution theories, etc., of this boastful day; while the Law, represented by the moon, will be viewed as bloody – that its sacrifices will not be esteemed as types, nor appreciated as such, but be regarded as the work of misguided Jews, who slaughtered their animals by the thousands because of their ignorance and superstition, and that the commands which they obeyed were not of God, but of their own conjecture and of priestly connivance. The same thought attaches to this sign or testimony of the water of truth being poured upon the social earth. It will be resented, as bloody, instead of being absorbed as truth.

*Millennial Dawn, Vol. I., pp.66-71. +Millennial Dawn, Vol. IV., pp.590-594.

Is there any thing corresponding to this sign now in progress in the world, that could be esteemed a sign or testimony to the true Israelites, such as never was before given? We answer, Yes, there is. A very remarkable movement has been in progress amongst us during the past ten years, during which the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society has supplied tracts free in any quantity to those who would promise to use them judiciously. You have the annual reports, showing the millions of pages which have thus been circulated – the truth being thus poured upon the symbolical earth, society, liberally in many lands and in many languages. But especially has this pouring [R2917 : page 379] out of the water, truth, progressed wonderfully during the past three years, under what we have designated the "Volunteer" work, in which hundreds of the Lord's consecrated people have systematically, season after season, distributed to Christian people tracts and booklets which our Society has supplied freely – the donations covering the expense coming in without urging or even request.

But what is the effect of this pouring out of the water upon the most enlightened peoples of the world, professed truth-seekers? Is it gladly received, joyfully absorbed? Only by the few, – the vast majority seem to be angered, as the scribes and Pharisees and doctors of divinity at the first advent were angered when they perceived that the Lord and the apostles were teaching the people, and that without money and without price. (Acts 4:2.) Nothing can be more evident than that the professed teachers of Christendom do not want to be taught themselves and do not want their people to be taught the truth. They bitterly oppose it, and persecute and speak evil of those who in this way are seeking to do good. More and more they are getting so changed from the simplicity of the Gospel of Christ to the theory of evolution and higher criticism and sectarian pride and worldliness that the truth seems repulsive to them, undesirable, bloody. They not only view the typical sacrifices as bloody, but they resent the thought that the anti-typical sacrifice for sins was the death of Christ – they resent the thought that divine justice required this sacrifice, and that "without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sins," as the Apostle declared. (Heb. 9:22.) It does not fit with their theories. According to their theories man was created next to the monkey, and has been evolving as a race grandly up to the present time, and will continue to evolve and develop until he becomes a god, and hence needs only to be let alone, needs no Savior, no deliverer from the present condition of things, which are not seen to be evil. They put evil for good, and good for evil, darkness for light and light for darkness. To these the truth of God's Word respecting the fall, respecting the ransom, respecting the coming deliverance and restitution blessings which God has provided in Christ, through the Millennial Kingdom for all the families of the earth, – these are all objectionable, contradictory to their theories, hateful, bloody.

As the "voice" of the third sign or testimony was to bring conviction to all of the true typical Israelites, so in the anti-type this last testimony or evidence will ultimately bring conviction to all of the Lord's true people today in the world. They will discern that the systems and theologians in whom they have trusted are going further and further, day by day, away from the appreciation of the true Gospel – the truth as it is in Christ Jesus – into the outer darkness of the world. All who are loyal to the Lord, as they perceive this condition of things, as they recognize the cleavage between belief and unbelief, from the Scriptural standpoint, will thus be helped, convinced, and enabled to take their stand for the truth accordingly.

It will be remembered that when Moses and Aaron presented themselves before Pharaoh they performed the first of these signs in his presence – the rod turned into a serpent and being reclaimed was a rod. Pharaoh called for his magicians (types of theologians of today, whose minds – not morals – have become corrupted, and who are reprobates, not morally, but as respects the faith – 2 Tim. 3:8), he explained to them that Moses and Aaron claimed that this sign was an evidence of divine power and favor, and asked them if they could not show the same evidences. They replied, Yes, and cast their rods upon the ground, and their rods also became serpents; but Aaron's rod-serpent swallowed up all of these. What would this signify? It might mean that so far as the world is concerned the first sign or testimony which convinced the Hebrews will be claimed to be nothing new; it will be claimed that theologians all along have declared and thought that God blesses evil things, so that they result in good. But we answer that the view of this subject which God has now displayed to his people is so much more complete that it quite swallows up all these suggestions and theories of the past. What the Lord is now showing proves to his people conclusively, not only that some accidents are overruled of the Lord for good, but that all evil of every kind is the result of absence of the divine control, and that when the Lord shortly shall put forth his hand, and again take control of earth's affairs, its evil conditions will give place to conditions in accord with the divine character and authority.

It will be remembered, also, that the first plague which came upon the Egyptians was the turning of all the water of Egypt into blood – the river, ponds, etc. – so that the Egyptians could not drink of the water, but digged for themselves wells near the river. As the water represents truth, the thought here conveyed would be that from the worldly standpoint very soon all truth will become repulsive – every feature of truth connected with the divine plan, as represented in the Word of God, will become abhorrent; and the digging of wells would seem to imply that, rejecting the Word of God, the world (Christendom – Churchianity) will seek for truth in various ways of their own.

WHAT SHALL WE SAY TO THESE THINGS?

It should be a great encouragement to us all to find so clearly expressed in the type what we had vaguely and indistinctly hoped for, viz., that the Lord's people of the Royal Priesthood on this side the vail are being used of him in various ways in the accomplishment of his purpose of separating the people of God from others, – the wheat from the tares. It is remarkable in this connection that none but the consecrated have ever been successful in connection with the circulation of any of these testimonies. Of the more than a million copies of Millennial Dawn now in circulation remarkably few have been circulated by any but those who are believers in their testimony, and who have circulated them through a desire to be instruments and mouthpieces of the Lord in giving forth his word, – even as was Aaron to Moses.

Let us, then, dear brethren and sisters, feel encouraged, as, looking into the type, we see so clear a fulfillment in our day of the things written aforetime for our admonition. Let us with fresh courage show forth to all whom we have any reason to believe are Israelites indeed the secret of the divine plan – Why [R2917 : page 380] Evil Was Permitted. Let us prosecute also the work of showing them respecting the hand, the instrumentalities which God has used during this Gospel age in this service; respecting the justification which covers, in God's sight, though it does not transform us in the sight of men, pointing out also the final victory of the consecrated. Let us persuade the first-born of Israel to faithfulness until our "change" comes, when we shall be made like the Lord and fit to be his servants and representatives. Let us continue also to pour out the water of truth; whether others hear or whether they forbear. The Lord's assurance is that this sign, this testimony and its contrary results ultimately shall influence all Israelites indeed. Let us remember that the opposition of the worldly, even, will prove to be co-operative influence, in deciding the Israelites indeed that the deliverer and the deliverance are at hand. And finally let us apply to ourselves the Lord's assurance to Moses respecting himself and Aaron, "Certainly I will be with thee." [R2917 : page 380]

"CHRIST OUR PASSOVER WAS SACRIFICED FOR US."
EXOD. 12:1-17. – DEC. 15. –

P
HARAOH'S heart seemed to grow harder and harder under divine mercies, as one plague after another was stayed at his request, through Moses. The goodness of God, instead of leading him to repentance, would seem to have made him only the more determined, as God had foreseen and foretold. God, however, informed Moses that the tenth and final plague would be sufficient to break down the opposition of this hard man, and compel his acquiescence with the requirement that Israel should go free. Before the infliction of this plague Moses enquired whether or not Pharaoh were willing to let Israel go, and upon receiving the negative response he warned Pharaoh that in consequence a dire calamity would befall the Egyptians. Apparently he immediately departed for the land of Goshen, there to put the people in readiness for the exodus. Their Egyptian neighbors gave them liberally jewels of gold and of silver and various articles of value, evidently anxious to have them go, and regretful that their ruler was so stubborn. They realized also, no doubt, that in some sense God was with the Israelites, and against the Egyptians, a matter which it seemed difficult for Pharaoh, their king, to discern.

How much time they may have consumed in preparation for the journey we know not, but we may well suppose that this was a time of suspense upon Pharaoh and all who knew of the last threat presented to him by Moses and Aaron. We are certain that the preparations required several days, if not weeks, because amongst other instructions each family was to select for itself a representative male lamb of the first year, unblemished, as the foundation for the religious ceremony, known as the Passover, ever since observed by that nation. The lamb was to be selected, accepted, separated from others, and cared for specially from the tenth day of that month, Abib (later known as Nisan), and on the fourteenth day of the month it was to be killed between evenings (between six o'clock the one evening and six o'clock the next evening – the usual Jewish day). Its flesh was to be roasted for eating the following evening, and its blood was to be preserved for sprinkling upon the lintels [R2918 : page 380] and door-posts, – the door frame, above and at either side. It was in the night following the fourteenth day that the roast lamb was to be eaten, with bitter herbs, the eaters being gathered in family groups, and all in expectation for the journey, sandals on their feet, and staff in hand, etc., ready to depart out of Egypt early in the morning of the fifteenth.

The story, as recorded in Exodus, is an interesting one, and has ever been one precious to the Hebrews, the law concerning it serving as one of the most prominent landmarks in the history of that nation. But to the Christian the meaning of this incident is of still greater importance. To him, as the anti-typical Israelite, the whole transaction speaks of the anti-typical deliverance at the hands of the anti-typical Moses at the close of the anti-typical night, and at the opening of the anti-typical Passover day. Our Golden Text, "Christ, our Passover, is slain for us" (1 Cor. 5:7), identifies the Lord Jesus as the anti-typical Lamb, and identifies the sacrifices which he gave with the deliverance which we are now hoping for, as near, even at the door. This fact is recognized by Christians of all denominations, and our Lord's Supper is recognized as the commemoration of the anti-type of the Passover supper, especially by the Catholic Churches and the older denominations of Protestants. As the Hebrews celebrate the Passover annually, so these churches celebrate annually "Good Friday," by an emblematic supper known as the Eucharist or Lord's Supper, commemorative of the death of "the Lamb of God" and the divine mercy consequently extended to "the Church of the first born."

Let us go backward, and look at some of the minutia, and the meaning of these to us, the spiritual anti-typical Israelites. The taking up of the lamb on the tenth day of the month found its correspondency at the first advent of our Lord Jesus, when he presented himself to Israel at the close of his ministry, as their King, riding upon the ass, exactly on the 10th of Nisan. It was then that that nation should have accepted him, should have received him; but instead "they hid, as it were, their faces from him," and saw not in him the beauty for which they were seeking, as a nation. It was on the fourteenth day of Nisan that our Lord partook of the Passover with his disciples, early in the evening. Later on in the same night he was betrayed. The next morning of the same day he was condemned and crucified. Later in the same day he was buried. All this was on the fourteenth day between evenings, between six p.m., where the day began, and the next six p.m., where it ended, and it was on the next day, the 15th, in the evening, that the Passover feast of the Jews was celebrated. We celebrate that feast anti-typically, continuously feasting and rejoicing in the grace of God toward us. But the Lord's Supper belongs to the 14th of Nisan and commemorates the killing of the Lamb of God. That night in which the Passover feast was eaten represents this Gospel age – a dark time, in which sin and evil still triumph, and darkness [R2918 : page 381] is abroad, and in which the Lord's people feed upon the merit of Christ, our Passover Lamb, slain for us, and realize that his "flesh is meat indeed."

Along with the Lamb the Jew partook of unleavened bread, pure, unadulterated, figuratively separate from sin; it symbolized the precious promises which come to us from the Heavenly Father through our Lord Jesus Christ. "This is the bread that came down from heaven, whereof if a man eat he shall never die." (John 6:50.) And, as the Hebrews ate their bread and lamb, so the anti-typical spiritual Israelite partakes of Christ's merits and graces freely, but with them receives also the bitterness of persecution, trials, difficulties, misrepresentation and suffering symbolized by the "bitter herbs." As the Hebrews ate shod and ready for their journey in the morning, so the true Israelites of this Gospel age partake of these spiritual favors, feeling the while that we are still in Egypt, and longing for the promised land; and they indicate by the conduct of life that they are pilgrims and strangers in this country, the world, and that they are seeking the heavenly country. But the deliverance did not come in the night in which the Passover was eaten, but in the morning which followed it. And so the deliverance of the spiritual Israelite does not come during the night of sin and trouble in which the god of this world reigns. It comes in the Millennial morning, for which we wait and hope and pray, "Thy Kingdom come." "God shall help her, early in the morning." – Psa. 46:5.

It is the mistake of some to suppose that the Passover refers, either directly or indirectly, to the passing of the children of Israel across the Red Sea. Nothing of the kind. The name was given with reference to the passing over or sparing of the first-born of Israel during that night in which the lamb was being eaten, and during which the blood was on the door-post without. The death-messenger was abroad throughout the land of Egypt, and the first-born of all Egypt were smitten, and the first-born of Israel were saved only upon condition that the blood should be sprinkled upon the door-posts and lintels of the houses in which they were. Any Israelite who did not respect the divine command, and place the blood-marks upon the front of his door, as directed of the Lord through Moses, would suffer, just in the same manner and just as surely as the Egyptians – the blood was the mark of distinction between those who were the Lord's people and those who were not his people.

What does this signify now, to the spiritual Israelites? We answer that the sprinkling of the blood symbolizes an acknowledgment of faith in the redemptive merit of our Lord Jesus' sacrifice, as our Passover Lamb. Whoever recognizes the Lord's word in respect to this matter realizes that without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sins, and he who thus realizes the importance of the death of our Savior is expected to confess it, as symbolized by the sprinkling of the blood upon the outside of the dwelling. And its being upon the door signifies that all who were within that door were trusting in the blood, were under its efficacious merit. It is remarkable that while this doctrine of the redemption through the blood of Christ has been held with more or less clearness for centuries, it is now, in the close of this age, being called in question by some who are still naming the name of Christ, and by some who profess to be advanced teachers, and higher critics. All such are, from the Lord's standpoint, Egyptians, not Israelites. All whom he will recognize as his people, Israelites indeed, will be such as will recognize him, his Word, and the work which he has accomplished for them through the shedding of the precious blood of our Passover Lamb, Christ Jesus.

The doctrine of substitution is made most emphatic in this type. As the blood represents life while in the veins, so it represents death when shed; and so, as the sentence of death was against our race, it was needful that Christ should die for our sins. Hence also the Lord has made it incumbent throughout this age that each one whom he would recognize must be one who would trust in and confess the atonement, the redemption which is in Christ Jesus. The blood was to be for a token, for a witness, for a sign, as evidence of the faith of those who were in the house on which it was sprinkled. It was not God's token, but man's token. God would do the sparing, but every Israelite who would be spared must see to it that his part of the program was carried out.

Let it not be overlooked that not all of the Israelites were in danger of death, but only the first-born; for this is a striking and prominent feature of the type. It teaches that while the deliverance that is to be accomplished in the morning will be deliverance for all who love the Lord and love righteousness, the first-born as well as all the rest, yet a special trial or testing comes during the night – before the Millennial morning – and this special testing or trial will affect only the first-born ones. Who are these first-born ones? We answer, they typified "the Church of the First-born, whose names are written in heaven," the "little flock," begotten to a newness of nature, and to joint-heirship with our Lord Jesus in the coming Kingdom. Others will be delivered from the power of Satan and the oppression of sin, as represented in the deliverance of all Israel from Pharaoh and his power and bondage, but the only ones who will be in danger during this night, the only ones who will be passed over or spared, during this Gospel age, will be the little flock, the Church of the First-born. This is distinctly the language of the type, nor can it be otherwise accounted for. It will be remembered that after the Passover, in the new order of things, the first-born ones spared in this Passover became representatively the Levites, amongst whom, in turn, were the priests, a little flock; and even so the Apostle declares of the Church of the First-born, "Ye are a Royal Priesthood." – 1 Pet. 2:5,9.

As already remarked, this Passover lamb found its anti-type in Christ, our Passover Lamb, who was slain for us, and of whom we partake. Our Lord instituted for us, the spiritual Israel, a commemorative service to take the place of the type observed by fleshly Israel. It was instituted on the same night in which he was betrayed, the same night in which he ate the Passover supper, as a Jew, and after the eating of the Passover supper. He took bread and wine to represent himself, as the true, anti-typical Lamb of God, who taketh away the sin of the world, and he enjoined upon all who were truly his followers that [R2919 : page 382] they henceforth, instead of any longer, as the Jews, celebrating the typical Passover, should henceforth celebrate the anti-typical Passover. "As often as ye do this [celebrate the Passover] do it in remembrance of me [and not any longer in remembrance of the typical deliverance]." And from year to year this celebration has been handed down to the present time, and is still commemorated.

Some of God's people, however, having become confused upon the subject, and having lost sight of the fact that it is a commemoration of the anti-type of the Jewish Passover, feel quite at liberty to set for its observance times and seasons of their own, without any authority from the Lord. They are excusable to a considerable extent, because, during the eighteen centuries since the institution of the ordinance the great Adversary introduced many doctrines and false practices amongst the followers of Jesus – amongst others, the doctrine of the Mass, which purports to be a repetition of Christ's sacrifice, performed by the priests, re-creating Christ in the flesh, they claim, and sacrificing him afresh in the Mass, for the sins of those for whom it is performed. Protestants, coming out from Papacy, have rejected the doctrine of the Mass, but because the Mass had come to be frequently performed they imagined that the Lord's Supper, as they celebrate it, is also without any limitation as to time and season. Moreover, even those old churches which still observe the Passover date for the Lord's Supper have adopted a new method of reckoning it, contrary to the method in use by the Jews – one in which the memorial day always falls upon the Friday which is nearest to the true date, so that the Sunday following, Easter, will symbolize our Lord's resurrection on the first day of the week.

The next proper anniversary of the celebration of the Passover, according to the Jewish reckoning of time, as used by our Lord and the apostles, and by some of the Lord's people since and today, will be after sundown, April 20th, 1902.

[R2919 : page 382]

CROSSING THE RED SEA.
EXOD. 14:13-27. – DEC. 22. –

"I will sing unto the Lord for he hath triumphed gloriously." – Exod. 15:1.

S
KEPTICS have railed greatly against the truthfulness of the Bible record of Israel's deliverance – crossing the Red Sea, etc. They object that so rapid an exodus of from one to two million people, with their flocks and herds, would be an impossibility; and they object, secondly, to the testimony that God miraculously delivered them by making a path for them through the sea. As to the first objection: We can readily see that if the Egyptians had been opposed to their going the difficulties would have been much greater. We are to remember, on the contrary, that after suffering the chastisement of the plagues they were willing, nay, anxious, for their departure, Pharaoh himself sending a message to Moses, even in the night in which the first-born were slain, saying, "Rise up, and get you forth from among my people, both ye and the children of Israel; and go and serve the Lord, as ye have said; also take your flocks and your herds, as ye have said, and be gone; and bless me also."

We are to remember that the Israelites were in a measure organized; their tribal and family relationship having been maintained. The narrative shows that they went forth in military order, – either five abreast or in five companies. (Exod. 13:18, margin.) Evidently all were under the command of the heads of the tribes, "the elders of the people." Several days elapsed before their journey brought them to the Red Sea. The great wall of Egypt, called Shur (somewhat similar to the great wall of China), is supposed to have hindered their making a more direct route. Besides, this wall was in the midst of a sandy desert, where there would be no sustenance, either for themselves or for their cattle; while the route taken, passing through the borders of Egypt to the head of the Red Sea, was evidently the most favorable one as respects pasturage, etc.

Various comparatively shallow places in the Red Sea, near its head, are suggested as possible ones by which the crossing may have been effected, and the description given would indicate that the passage was made on such a sandbar, which perhaps ordinarily would have from five to twelve feet of water upon it, according to the condition of the tides. The presumption is that the strong east wind spoken of, operating with the tides, laid bare this sandbar, and thus gave the Israelites a passage.

But while Pharaoh, under the sting of the last plague, was anxious for the departure of the Hebrews, nevertheless, as his grief assuaged and he considered the loss his empire was sustaining in the departure of over a million subjects, intelligent and ingenious and docile, and when he considered further that they were an unarmed host, and impeded in traveling by their flocks and herds, he evidently felt that he had been too generous in permitting them to go, and concluded that in the few days' march they had already experienced something of the difficulties and trials of the journey, and that by this time they were not only discouraged, but hemmed in by the northern tongue of the Red Sea, and the Egyptian wall, while on either side were mountains. He concluded that they could be easily retaken, and would feel that they had had enough of their "outing" and perhaps would return to their labor more docile than ever. Consequently the Egyptian troops of the capital were started in pursuit.

The Israelites, who for years had learned to dread their Egyptian masters, heard of the pursuit, and cried unto Moses despairingly, Moses in turn crying unto the Lord on behalf of the people. The Lord's response to Moses' prayer is a striking one, from which spiritual Israelites may also take a lesson. It was, "Wherefore criest thou unto me? Speak unto the children of Israel, that they go forward." (Exod. 14:15.) There is a time to pray and also a time to act and thus to co-operate with God who is answering our prayers. When the Lord's time for answering our prayers has come and we know it, it is for us to manifest our faith in him by going forward. Too many [R2919 : page 383] spiritual Israelites, after hearing the Lord's message, instead of going forward in obedience are disposed to tarry and pray to the Lord that he give them some special message not common to others. Such through weakness of faith are in danger of losing their standing. "Without faith it is impossible to please God;" and obedience is merely a demonstration of faith.

Apparently the Israelites got a glimpse of the Egyptians in the distance, before sundown. This is implied in Moses' statement, "The Egyptians whom ye have seen this day ye shall see again no more forever." The account declares that the pillar of fire, by which the Israelites were miraculously led, removed to their rearward, so as to be between them and the Egyptians, – a pillar of cloud and darkness to the latter, and a pillar of fire or light to the former. Apparently there was a great storm that night, the east wind blowing furiously; outside narratives, such as that of Josephus, declaring that it rained, thundered and lightened appallingly. But whether this was merely upon the Egyptians, from the pillar of cloud, or whether it was also upon the Israelites, would be merely surmise. What we do know is that during that night the windstorm blew across that upper neck of the Red Sea in such a manner as to leave the sandbar bare for a considerable breadth, so as to permit the rapid passage of so large a body of people. The Israelites knew, through Moses and their elders, what miracle had been performed, and hastened to escape from their pursuers. The latter probably were totally unaware of the miracle, and perhaps unaware that they were crossing the ordinary bed of the sea, and therefore, without trepidation, hastened onward in pursuit, impeded, however, by various accidents to their chariots, which sank into the comparatively soft sand of the sea bottom. They, no doubt, concluded that where the Israelites had gone they could go. Nevertheless, ere they had crossed they became so discouraged with the opposition, of what they probably at first considered accidents, but afterward recognized as divine providences on Israel's behalf, that they resolved on a return – to give up the pursuit, saying that the God of the Hebrews fought for them. By this time it was nearly daybreak, and Israel having crossed over Moses stretched forth his rod over the sea, and winds and tide, etc., being favorable, the waters came again upon the Egyptians, that they were drowned. It is said that wonderful storms, somewhat analogous to this one, frequently occur in this vicinity, and that Napoleon and a troop of soldiers were very nearly overtaken at about the same place that Pharaoh's chariots were lost, by a sudden cessation of storm and rising of the tides.

A critical writer suggests that Pharaoh's charioteers were probably intent upon heading off the Israelites, and thus turning them backward, and that the sea waters were a wall on either hand, in the sense of being a flank protection, hindering the troops from getting ahead of the Israelites, turning their flank. He [R2920 : page 383] says, "The wall would not, by any Oriental, be supposed to be an actual wall rising up beside them, any more than 'the wooden walls of Great Britain' are board fences about the island; or 'the hedge about the law,' which the rabbis built by their precepts, was a growth of vegetation."

There are numerous lessons connected with this narrative, profitable to the spiritual Israelites. As already suggested, the experience of the Israelites and the Egyptians at this time represented the experience of the world in the close of this Gospel age, and in the dawn of the new dispensation – the period of deliverance of God's people, too, from bondage to sin and death, which will be accomplished at the dawn of the Millennial age. We may reasonably understand that the last or tenth plague upon Egypt symbolizes the bitter experience of the world at the close of the present age, and that these experiences will be favorable to the Lord's people, and unfavorable to others, down to a certain point where the contest will be abandoned, and those in authority in the world will agree to the full liberty of all who love righteousness and who desire to walk in the Lord's way. Quite possibly "the powers that be" may concede for a time the demands of the weak and the helpless, and subsequently repent, and attempt their re-capture under the slavery of selfishness, and so through a Red Sea of trouble the Lord will then administer a final chastisement upon all those who oppose his deliverance of the poor and the needy and they that have no helper, and who cry for righteousness, and follow the leadings of his representative, Messiah.

Surely, when the new dispensation has been opened up, and the silver trumpets of the Jubilee shall sound release and restitution throughout all the world, there will be great rejoicing amongst all who love righteousness, and, in the language of our Golden Text, they may say, "I will sing unto the Lord, for he hath triumphed gloriously." And already the spiritual Israelite can by faith thus rejoice and realize his release from sin and death.

Another thought we may draw from this narrative is the unlimited power of God, who has promised us that if we are his, and will follow the leadings of our Master, the anti-type of Moses, all things shall work together for good to us. We are to learn that nothing is too wonderful for our God to accomplish, and in proportion as faith increases our joys will increase, and we will have the full assurance of faith, the full assurance of victory, for "This is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith." We are to learn that while the wicked may triumph for a time the Lord is against them. He is on the side of the poor and oppressed, who are seeking to know his will and to do it, and though he bear long with them, as represented in the parable, yet, finally he will avenge them of their Adversary: their enemies shall then become the enemies of the Lord, and the enemies of the Lord shall bite the dust – be destroyed. – Luke 18:7; Micah 7:17.

page 383

REVIEW OF THE QUARTER.
– DEC. 29TH. –

GOLDEN TEXT: "If God be for us, who can be against us." – Rom. 8:31.

A review of the year, its blessings and its trials, will be in order, on this the closing Sunday of the year. We trust that all our readers may be able to apply the Golden Text to themselves with confidence and rejoicing.

page 385
December 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

SEMI-MONTHLY.
VOL. XXII.DECEMBER 15, 1901.No. 24.
CONTENTS.

Views from the Watch Tower
Liberty Enlightening the World 387
Federation of Methodists and Others 387
The Pope's Views 388
Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society's Report 388
Kept for the Master's Use 392
Tarrying Until Endued with Power from on High 392
Speaking With Other Tongues 396

'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 386

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.

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TERMS TO THE LORD'S POOR, AS FOLLOWS: –

Those of the interested who, by reason of old age, or other infirmity or adversity, are unable to pay for the TOWER will be supplied FREE, if they send a Postal Card each December, stating their case and requesting the paper. We are not only willing, but anxious, that all such be on our list continually.

ENTERED AS SECOND CLASS MAIL MATTER AT ALLEGHENY, PA., POST OFFICE.

BRITISH FRIENDS who find it more convenient may send "Good Hopes" and all orders to our London office. [R2920 : page 386]

APPROVAL, WHETHER SUCCESSFUL OR NOT.

We know not to what extent the Lord may be pleased to use and bless our united efforts to keep open the door of opportunity afforded by present favorable postal laws. But in any event we feel sure that he will appreciate our humble efforts in this direction. Any who have not yet written to the President, as suggested in our issue of Nov. 15th, we advise to do so at once. Let us do our part and then rest content. The law is there, all right, and even the humblest foreigner has a right to appeal to it, and for its benefits; and to protest against its violation. But there we will let it stop. If protest is unavailing we will reckon that it is the Lord's will that we endure the wrong cheerfully. page 386

BEGIN THE NEW YEAR PROPERLY.

As soon as each little group has chosen its leaders, advise us, and if "Pilgrim" visits are desired, answer the queries propounded in our last issue, page 2. Mention your places and hours of meetings, also.

If you desire the visits of the Watch Tower continued, advise us promptly please; whether you can send the subscription price or not.

MARKED NEW TESTAMENTS.

We have been much disappointed by the publishers of the Marked New Testament. They have been promising us books for nearly six months but have none ready yet. All waiting orders will be filled promptly as possible when they come to us.

"ZION'S GLAD SONGS" IS OUT OF PRINT.

[R2920 : page 387]

VIEWS FROM THE WATCH TOWER.

"LIBERTY ENLIGHTENING THE WORLD."

WE HAVE no sympathy with Count Tolstoy's unscriptural religious views for which he was ex-communicated by the Greek Catholic Church; yet we note with surprise that his published reply to his ex-communication has been forbidden sale by the Public Prosecutor of Leipsic, Germany. A cable dispatch to the New York Sun says:

"The reason given for the seizure is that the work is calculated to bring the Church into contempt, and the prosecutor's action is based on a paragraph of the German penal code, which imposes a maximum penalty of three years' imprisonment on anybody publicly insulting one of the Christian churches or other religious communities enjoying in Germany the privileges of a corporation. Perhaps the most remarkable feature of the incident is that Count Tolstoy's indignant reply to his ex-communicators is allowed to circulate in Russia, the Holy Synod refraining from prosecution, while the officials of the country which indorsed Luther's protest against the Roman Church seek to extinguish the words of the Russian reformer."

There are any number of people, in all countries, of similarly narrow soul we have every reason to believe. Fallen human nature though not inclined to claim for itself perfection, loves to wield power and to destroy its enemies or those against whom it is prejudiced; although uncertain as to what is truth it is ready to decide what is error upon very slight evidence.

Who can doubt that God's providence held back America until the due time, when its discovery opened a door of freedom for the oppressed and priest-and king-ridden of Europe. "Liberty enlightening the world" has been a fact for now more than a century. No well-informed person will doubt that much of the liberty enjoyed by the peoples of Europe to-day are the result of the influence which has gone back to the "fatherland" from the liberty-loving people who commingling here have learned to think more justly and more broadly than they or their fathers could think under their old environments.

Custom becomes law: the illustration of American liberty with prosperity compels a liberty in Europe which otherwise would not exist to-day. But it looks as though the pendulum has swung its full length liberty-ward, even in America, and as though it had started in a return movement. We believe that the next few years will witness a serious curtailment of liberty on the part of those in power, and that the general spirit of liberty and alertness to its defense is so deficient among the masses, here as well as in Europe, that its wings will be clipped rapidly, in the name of law, order, expediency – until the people finally awakening to the situation, in fear of a return to complete serfdom will revolt in anarchy.

How comforting the thought that the bright lining to this cloud is the Millennial Kingdom which will promptly be established on the ruins of "the present evil world" – on the ashes of present civil, religious, political institutions. We who thus hope for the salvation of the world which God has promised can possess our souls in peace as respects these matters, waiting and hoping for a share in the new order of things – the new heavens and new earth – wherein will dwell righteousness. – 2 Pet. 3:13.

FEDERATION OF METHODISTS, AND OTHERS.

Rev. Dr. George Elliott, pastor of the Central Methodist Episcopal Church, who has just returned from attendance upon the Methodist Ecumenical conference in London, England, says that the recent assembly was especially marked by its constant response to spiritual religion and by the utter absence of dogmatism. Perhaps the most important matter that came before the assembly, which consisted of some 500 Methodists from all over the world, was that of church unity. As a result of the ecumenical conference, held in Baltimore ten years ago, all the Australian Methodists are now united in a single body. At the late conference in London all the smaller English bodies signified their willingness to unite with the Wesleyan church, which is the strongest [R2920 : page 388] branch of the denomination in the British Isles. Dr. Elliott thinks the outlook good for a consolidation, or at least for a federation, of the different branches.

The advance in this direction, however, was not so noticeable among the delegates from the United States, although some progress was made. The delegates from the Methodist Episcopal church south, which left the main body at the opening of the civil war, had little to say on the subject.

Half a day was spent in considering the matter of a federation similar to the church federations in this country, which should include the Presbyterians, the Congregationalists, the Baptists and the Methodists. There already exists a free church catechism [R2921 : page 388] which all these denominations use in common, and to a great degree they are already joining in plans for mutual work.

Detroit Free Press.
THE POPE'S VIEWS.

Die Information, the clerical organ in Vienna, says: "The pope addressed the Catholic Bishops Sunday and declared that the late President McKinley was a victim of the excessive freedom granted to the people of the United States. He urged that it was the duty of society to oppose the spread of socialism, freemasonry, Judaism and anarchism."

[R2921 : page 388]

WATCH TOWER BIBLE AND TRACT SOCIETY'S
REPORT FOR THE YEAR ENDING DECEMBER 1, 1901.

"GIVE THANKS unto the Lord, for he is good!" is the expression of our hearts as we sum up the activities of the fiscal year in the harvest work – from December, 1900, to December, 1901. We have not in all respects attained to our ideals set for the year just closed, but perhaps this was partly because of our high appreciation of the work and the workers, and of a laudable ambition to have each year exceed its predecessor in efforts and in results. And indeed, as the itemized reports will show, the work in all its branches has made good progress, and in some directions has exceeded that of any previous year. We have nothing but thanks to offer to our gracious Master for the privileges enjoyed at his hands in connection with his service, the service of the truth and of the brethren – and for his blessing so richly bestowed upon our humble efforts.

ZION'S WATCH TOWER.

One of the most encouraging features of the work is the substantial increase in the number of Watch Tower readers – our list now numbering about 14,000. We had hoped that by this time it would have reached 16,000; we evidently were too sanguine. The Watch Tower list may properly be regarded as a sort of barometer respecting the progress of the truth, because the terms on which it is supplied surely permit all of the interested to be on its list – there are none so poor that they cannot have it if they will but comply with the standing offer which appears on the second page of each issue. We not only offer it free to the Lord's poor, but we offer credit to those who hope to be able to pay later; and we offer, further, that if they cannot pay later a postal card request, at any time, will secure a cancellation of the account. These being the terms we are considerably surprised to find, from time to time, many people who have considerable interest in the truth, and who have read and appreciated one or all of the Dawn volumes whose names are not on the list. An offer in our last issue we hope will correct this matter; and our proposition that each one now on the list shall act as a solicitor will, we believe, bring good results. We hope, with your co-operation, to be able to announce in our next annual report that the list has increased to sixteen thousand or above. Indeed, if each one could feel respecting this matter as we do – the importance of the regular semi-monthly visits of the Tower to those of the interested who are more or less disposed to be overcharged with the cares of this life – and if all would consider the matter as a service to the Lord, and to the brethren, and would at once proceed to do what they can in this direction, we have no doubt that our list would speedily run up to 20,000. We do not want the Tower to go to any one who would not appreciate and read it, but we are more than willing – we are anxious – to have all the interested on our list, regardless of their ability to pay for it – the extra expense will be cheerfully met out of the contributions to the Tract Fund. Let each make this a matter of prayer, and then do what he can in this direction, as a service unto the Lord and unto the brethren.

THE COLPORTEUR WORK.

We continue to esteem the colporteur branch of the service one of the most important – in many respects it is the foundation of the work, so far as the public is concerned. It should be borne in mind that this is not a book-agent business, but a ministry of the truth of the true gospel; and the sixty-nine colporteurs now engaged in the service are in it, not for wealth nor for health, but for their love of the Lord and for their desire to lay down their lives on behalf of the brethren – to assist in extricating the Lord's people from the bondage of error and darkness, and to assist them into the marvelous light now shining for the people of God who are walking in the narrow way, the path of the just. Such being the motives of the service it will rightly be seen that the large number of books circulated by these dear friends does not by any means measure their service for the truth; for they deliver very many brief discourses in various homes where they fail to arouse sufficient interest to dispose of a book – an interest, nevertheless, which the days or weeks or years to come may bring to fruitage, as it has done to our knowledge in many instances.

The total number of copies of Millennial Dawn circulated during the last year is slightly less than the number for the previous year, but the decrease is in the foreign translations. The English edition shows an increase of about 9,000 copies. A condensed statement follows: – [R2921 : page 389]

Dawns Circulated – English.................93,214
   "         "    – German.................. 2,464
   "         "    – Swedish................. 2,373
   "         "    – French..................   681
   "         "    – Dano-Norwegian..........   216
                                           -------98,948
Booklets circulated – English................37,155
 Foreign....................................19,247
                                           -------57,402
                                                 -------
Grand total......................................156,350

This is a branch of the service in which there is always room for more – and the better the colporteur's education and general address the better both for himself and for the work. This ministry closely resembles that which the Lord instituted at the first advent, and, as then, it is usual for the friends to go in pairs. The message proclaimed is identical – the long-prayed-for Kingdom of Heaven at hand. And now, as then, authority and power go with these servants of the Lord, to assist those to whom they minister, who are exercising faith, by opening the blind eyes, unstopping the deaf ears, and casting out evil spirits. Only now it is the eyes of the understanding and the ears of the heart that are opened, and it is the spirit of selfishness and sin that is rebuked and cast out, in proportion as the spirit of the Lord is received. It is but proper that we should expect thus to see a higher work performed now than that done at the first advent, because this is the harvest of spiritual Israel, while that was the harvest of fleshly Israel.

We have no doubt that there are very many more of the dear friends of the truth who have consecrated their hearts and time and talent and influence to the Lord, who are carefully considering the great opportunities presented in this colporteur service, and making ready their arrangements to take part therein. We are glad to hear from such from time to time, and will co-operate with them in every way possible – for their entrance into and prosecution of this work.

THE "VOLUNTEER" WORK.

This branch of the service circulated, during the past year, about a million of the free tracts, "Food for Thinking Christians." This was good, excellent, grand – about the same number as the previous year; nevertheless, it was disappointing to us, because we had expected that the interest in this Volunteer work would have increased at least a half; not that the former workers could do more than they had already done, but that we expected others to gradually become more zealous, and thus to increase the effectiveness of this service. This has been true in some places, where practically the entire congregations engaged; but in many places there has apparently been a little slackening of the hands, a little cooling of the ardor. Let us pray the Lord's blessing upon ourselves and upon each other in connection with the glorious opportunities of the harvest work and full appreciation of the privileges of a share therein; and that the Lord will send forth more laborers into his vineyard, to their spiritual profit and to the furtherance of his cause.

The Volunteer distribution represented a total of over eighteen and a half million pages. Surely all who took part in any measure have cause for gratitude to God for the privilege enjoyed and improved. Although there is no earthly reward connected with this service there surely is a spiritual reward experienced in the present time, as well as an exceeding great and precious one laid up for these faithful soldiers of the cross. We are well aware that it is not possible for all to engage in this service, and we are offering no criticism of those who do not engage. We merely desire to encourage those who have already had opportunity, and have availed themselves of it, and have taken up their cross in this service. We are sure that they are stronger spiritually for the efforts put forth.

THE "PILGRIM" SERVICE – ORAL PREACHING.

We recognize no such divisions in the Church as are commonly, in the nominal churches, denominated [R2921 : page 389] "clergy" and "laity." We hold that the Scriptures teach that the entire Church is a priesthood: "Ye are a royal priesthood,...that ye should show forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into this marvelous light." (1 Pet. 2:9.) We hold, therefore, that the Colporteurs, who take the Dawns and booklets and tracts from house to house, and the Volunteers, who make distributions of free literature every Sunday, and the brethren and sisters who have no such opportunities, but who find other ways of serving the Lord, the truth and the brethren, either more publicly or more privately, are all priests, ministers, preachers, as any may be pleased to term the Lord's servants. All have the same message to give forth, and all are ordained of God – anointed with the holy spirit, for this very purpose; as an authority to preach the good tidings. It is the privilege of each to serve according to his talents and opportunities, and all are acceptable to the Lord as ministers of the new covenant who faithfully seek to serve, not self, but the Lord and the brethren. It is not, therefore, to be understood that those who go forth under the auspices of our Society, to give their time specially to oral preaching (public and private) are any more authorized or ordained for the ministry in holy things than any others of the same "Royal Priesthood." We do not expect these brethren whom we designate as "Pilgrims," to be received as any more commissioned and authorized than any other of the Lord's brethren. You may understand, however, that when such come to you, they are so far as we have been enabled to know them, sound in the faith, apt to teach, possessed of good character, and fully consecrated to the service of the Lord, the truth and the brethren. Our judgment in this matter is not infallible, however, and even if it were, the Scriptural injunction is that the Lord's people are to test whatever they receive as truth by the sure standard, the divine Word, whoever presents it.

Sixteen* of these Pilgrim brethren have done considerable service throughout the year, their routes of travel being noted in the Watch Tower since June 1 issue. Their service is not for filthy lucre's sake – none of them are paid salaries, though all are comfortably provided for in every necessity out of the Society's funds, and in some instances provision is [R2922 : page 390] also made for their families. This, in a general way, was the method which prevailed at the first advent. Had the practice, of serving merely for expenses continued, we have every reason to believe that the nominal church would not be in its present condition – that its public servants would be freer to study the truth, and freer also to declare what they would learn.

*Five serve week-days in the Tower office, preaching on Sundays.

The amount of Pilgrim service during the past year is in excess of that of any previous year, as will be seen by the following statement: – Number of persons giving more or less of their time in this Pilgrim service during the

 year.............................................    16
Number of miles traveled in the service...........63,149
Number of churches visited........................   634
Public meetings held.............................. 1,141
Private or parlor meetings held...................   745
Cost of this branch of the work................$3,255.28

We notice with pleasure that the number of private or parlor meetings held is proportionately more than last year, and the number of public meetings proportionately less. The public meetings are valuable, very favorable to deepening impressions which you have already made upon your friends and neighbors, by private conversation or through reading matter; but the private meetings we esteem to be the more valuable for the development of the household of faith already fairly clear in doctrinal matters. They are valuable as giving opportunities for bringing up points and questions which may have arisen in connection with their private or class studies. We are trusting that, under the Lord's providence, a great blessing will be upon this "Pilgrim" branch of the service for the coming year. All requests for "Pilgrim" service should be renewed now. See second page of our last issue.

CONVENTIONS OF THE YEAR.

This may be considered a part of the Pilgrim service deserving a special report. We held but one general convention, at Cleveland, O., a report of which has already been laid before you. We are of the opinion that these annual conventions furnish excellent opportunities for the Lord's people to assemble together. Such assemblies were provided for during the Jewish dispensation – we remember how our Lord and the apostles attended the feasts of Passover, etc., at Jerusalem. One special blessing which seems to result now, as then, is that representatives of the Lord's people in various quarters attend and carry home with them some measure of the love and zeal with which they become imbued, and thus in many directions the flame of sacred love is more brightly enkindled.

One-Day Conventions, addressed by the Editor, seem to continue popular with the friends, and, so far as we are able to judge, they are stimulating and helpful. The main service is always for the public, upon some theme calculated to arrest and fix the attention of new as well as old hearers. They serve also to advertise the meetings of the Church at each place, and to draw together the interested. Twenty-four of these conventions were held during the year, covering over twelve thousand miles – generally in places accessible by one night's travel, thus consuming as little of the Editor's time as possible from other departments of the service.

GENERAL TRACT DISTRIBUTION.

Hundreds of thousands of tracts are distributed free outside the regular "Volunteer" work noted above. Some have opportunities for using tracts amongst their friends or neighbors, and some enclose them with their correspondence. We are glad to co-operate with all in any such service, and from time to time hear of some upon whom impressions have been made by books or tracts thus circulated. In various ways the Lord seems to be reaching all who have the hearing ear, and in various ways also each, as he receives the truth, seeks to dispense it to others, according to his talents and opportunities. Each faithful one is blessed. Notice the total number of tracts circulated in the various ways, as stated in another column.

THE CORRESPONDENCE DEPARTMENT.

We esteem this one of the most helpful channels of service. Many write us, and upon a large variety of subjects – theological and practical; and their letters are welcomed and answered to the best of our ability. The Editor has three valuable assistants in this department of the service; nevertheless, he gives his personal attention to all important and doctrinal questions. While foolish questions are, of course, not desired, nevertheless we esteem that no question is trivial which may seem to any of you to have a bearing upon the character of your daily lives or your future prospects. Therefore be free to write us, and to permit us to assist you in any manner possible, freely, as unto the Lord.

Letters and cards received during the year40,417
Letters and cards sent out during the year28,601
CONDENSED STATEMENT.
Copies of Millennial Dawn circulated at cost.     98,948
Copies of booklets circulated at cost........     56,402

     CIRCULATED AT EXPENSE OF TRACT FUND.

Copies of Zion's Watch Tower.................    455,741
Copies of Old Theology tracts................  2,591,500
These figures, expressed in the usual form
 represent in tract pages.................... 83,675,000

   THE FINANCIAL SIDE – TREASURER'S REPORT.

           TRACT FUND EXPENDITURES.

Cost of above matter circulated free, including
 freight, gas, help, etc....................  $14,904.56
Pilgrim expenses, etc.......................    3,255.28
Last year's deficit.........................    3,025.91
                                              ----------
 Total......................................  $21,185.75

             TRACT FUND RECEIPTS.

From Good Hopes donations...................  $19,770.09
From other sources..........................    6,226.70
                                              ----------
 Total......................................  $25,996.79

The financial showing, dear brethren, is remarkable, when it is remembered that no appeals are made for money and no collections taken up by the Pilgrims at any of their meetings, and no private solicitations made by them, or through the columns of the Watch Tower. Every donation, [R2922 : page 391] we therefore safely say is in the best and heartiest possible sense a voluntary one. We do not mention these things as though the amount were large. It would be considered ridiculously small, by other Bible and Tract Societies, principally heard from through appeals for money, and whose active collecting agents are usually given one-half of their collections as salary. The entire amount out of which we publish millions of tracts and pay the expenses of sixteen travelling preachers, etc., etc., would generally not be considered enough for the salaries of the principal officers.

Some may wonder, indeed, that we make mention of so small an amount at all, in view of the fact that we frequently see in the newspapers mention of single collections for religious and missionary work which amount to from three to six times the amount of our entire year's receipts from the Lord's people in all parts of the world. Our reply is that so far as we know the large proportion of those interested in present [R2923 : page 391] truth are poor in this world's goods, rich only in faith toward God and in zeal for his cause. As the Lord esteemed the two mites of the widow as "far more" than all the gifts of the rich, so we (and we believe the Lord also) esteem very highly the contributions sent us by the Lord's faithful; and we publish these annual statements that the dear friends may know how we strive to make every dollar do full duty – expending it according to our best judgment of what would be the divine will.

We want to mention incidentally that although we do not put money first in any case, nor recommend that the money talent is the superior one, nevertheless we wish to encourage those who are seeking to use their financial talents, by saying that in our judgment the Lord will be pleased to bless those who serve his cause financially, as well as those who serve otherwise – by oral or other preaching. Nevertheless, we encourage everyone of the Lord's people not to be content with the use of any one talent, but to seek to bring into active exercise as many talents as he finds himself possessed of.

May the Lord's blessing rest richly with us during the year beginning, giving more and more wisdom, that we may do those things pleasing in his sight; that we may be useful in his service; not as those who merely beat the air, but as those who accomplish something to the praise of our Lord and to the profit of his people.

We trust, dear friends, that you continually pray for the Editor and his colaborers in this service, that the Lord will use more and more your and our united efforts for his cause; and that he will bless and refresh us all while we do what we can to pour out blessings also upon others in his name.

The following report of the British Branch will be of interest. It closes the year with November 1st, when Brother Henninges turned over his charge there to his successor, Brother Hemery. A comparison with the report which appeared in our issue last year shows that our dear brother's faithfulness in the service there was abundantly blessed by our Lord. True, the financial statement shows a deficit of considerable amount, but this was fully anticipated and fully authorized by us, with a view to putting the work there upon a better footing. We congratulate Brother Henninges upon his success, and trust that in the Lord's providence his return to the Home Office will mean a shouldering by him of much of its responsibilities and a corresponding relief and greater liberty for the President of this Society (the Editor) for other departments of the work.

The items below are included in the foregoing general statement. The report follows:

REPORT OF MANAGER OF BRITISH BRANCH.

LONDON,November 1, 1901. Dear Brother Russell:

I have the pleasure to hand you the report of the Tract Fund receipts and expenditures for the British Branch of the Society, November 16, 1900 – October 31, 1901:

EXPENDITURES.
                                              L.   s   d
Deficit from previous account................425.  1.  4
Paper and printing...........................201. 11.  3
Carriage and other expenses.................. 46. 15.  9
Pilgrim work................................. 42. 16.  5
                                             -----------
 Total.......................................716.  4.  9
Receipts from Great Britain..................178. 19. 10
                                             -----------
 Deficit.....................................537.  4. 11

Report of Literature Circulated.
Copies of Millennial Dawn....................     15,740
Copies of Booklets...........................      2,918
                                              ----------
 Total.......................................     18,658
                                              ----------
Tracts sent out free.........................    498,675
Sample Watch Towers free.....................     49,500
                                              ----------
 Total copies sent free......................    548,175
These represent Tract Pages.................. 14,774,400
                                              ----------
Letters and cards received...................      3,047
Letters and cards sent.......................      4,071
                                              ----------
 Total.......................................      7,118

In sending this report, we must acknowledge the Lord's gracious answers to prayer, and the operation of his Spirit in his dear people in this country, as shown in the substantial increase over the previous year of Dawns and Tracts put into circulation. The Lord has also sent more laborers into the harvest, in every department, sending forth such as can spend all their time and energy in the blessed service of colporteuring from house to house, and stirring up the zeal of those who cannot have this privilege in full measure, but can spend some time in this way. May their numbers and efficiency be further increased to the glory of God! The field is really white to harvest, and the time is short.

The "Volunteers" also deserve special mention for their faithfulness in conditions favorable and unfavorable. It will be observed that the number of tract pages freely circulated in Great Britain in the last twelve months is less than the total in our previous report, though the number of copies is more than twice as great. This is due to the smaller number [R2923 : page 392] of pages in "Food for Thinking Christians," as compared with the Volunteer Towers previously distributed. This great mass of free literature could not have been circulated here, but for the generous cooperation of the Allegheny office; and it might be remarked that our financial report takes no account of the expenses of printing the tracts received from America, and sent out from here. These represent 298,675 of the above mentioned copies of tracts sent out free.

Our successor, Brother Hemery, takes charge of the office from this date. We are sure that the friends of the truth in the territory served by this Branch will find in him a zealous and efficient co-laborer in every matter that would advance the interests of the work entrusted to him. As the brother is quite well known to most of the Tower readers in this country, more need not be said by us. We commend him to the grace of God, and to the prayers and active co-operation of all who love the truth. The church at Forest Gate has unanimously requested him to take up the pastoral duties vacated by us.

In retiring from this portion of the field we (speaking for Mrs. Henninges as well as myself) return thanks to God for the privileges we have had in connection with the work. Some "light afflictions" have befallen us, but we can give thanks for them also, since they have ministered to the increase of our joy in the Lord and his service. It has been a great pleasure to labor with and for the friends of the truth here, whom we have learned to love dearly in the Lord; and we desire at this time to assure them again of our grateful appreciation of the efforts they have put forth to make our sojourn among them pleasant and profitable. Though many miles may separate us, our intense interest in the welfare of the harvest work and workers in this land will not slack. May the Lord's favor be even more manifest to them in future than in the past!

With love to you and all the co-laborers, and trusting to see you soon, I remain,

Yours faithfully, in Christ,
E. C. HENNINGES.

"KEPT FOR THE MASTER'S USE."

Keep my life, that it may be
Consecrated, Lord, to Thee.

Keep my moments and my days;
Let them flow in ceaseless praise.

Keep my hands, that they may move
At the impulse of Thy love.

Keep my feet, that they may be
Swift and "beautiful" for Thee.

Keep my voice, that I may sing
Always, only, for my King.

Keep my lips, that they may be
Filled with messages from Thee.

Keep my silver and my gold;
Not a mite would I withhold.

Keep my intellect, and use
Every power as Thou shalt choose.

Keep my will, oh, keep it Thine!
For it is no longer mine.

Keep my heart; it is Thine own;
It is now Thy royal throne.

Keep my love; my Lord, I pour
At Thy feet its treasure-store.

Keep myself, that I may be
Ever, only, ALL for Thee.

Frances Havergal.

[R2924 : page 392]

TARRYING UNTIL ENDUED WITH POWER FROM ON HIGH.
ACTS 1:1-11 – JAN. 5. –

"While he blessed them he was parted from them, and carried up into heaven." – Luke 24:51.

BIBLE STUDIES of the International series, begin the new year with studies in the Book of Acts, and after six months will return us again to Old Testament studies from Moses to Samuel.

Luke, the physician, who wrote the Gospel of Luke, was the author of the Book of Acts. In the latter he takes up the narrative substantially where he left it in the Gospel – the ascension of Christ. He recapitulates, however, to the extent of giving us a narrative of the conversation immediately preceding our Lord's ascension. The account is evidently addressed to a friend, of the then common name, Theophilus, who was supposed to have been a person of considerable dignity and influence, inasmuch as he is elsewhere styled "most excellent," a title which implied a considerable social or political rank. Luke was not one of the apostles, and his records are not, therefore of apostolic authority. Such authority or plenary inspiration was not necessary, however, in the recording of plain, simple facts such as the Gospel of Luke and the Book of Acts present. It requires no inspiration to record a fact, though it does require some ability, and it is reasonable to assume that since the Lord used Luke's abilities in connection with the work of recording the facts of that time he was guided of the holy spirit in the ascertainment of the facts, which his education and natural talents eminently qualified him to state succinctly. Luke was guided of the holy spirit, in the same sense that all of the Lord's consecrated people are guided by his spirit, which is to a different degree from that plenary inspiration granted to the twelve apostles – Paul taking the place of Judas.

The first verse refers back to the Gospel of Luke, as a treatise of the doings and teaching of Jesus from the time he began his ministry to its close; and some have assumed that the word "began" might reasonably be understood to imply that our Lord continued his ministry after his ascension, speaking and acting, through his apostles, and those believing on him through their word. This is true enough whether it was what Luke meant or not; for the Scriptures invariably teach that the Church of Christ [R2924 : page 393] in the flesh is his representative: as the Apostle Paul says, we "fill up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ, for his body's sake, which is the Church." (Col. 1:24.) And as we have to do with the suffering of the anointed one, so we have to do with the witnessing or ministry by which the members of the body are to be called out from the world, separated, instructed, and thus prepared for a share in the glorious Kingdom and the great work of judging the world, which it will inaugurate. It is in this sense that our Lord declared, "Ye shall be my witnesses, both in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth." Primarily, the apostles were the witnesses who testified to us respecting our Lord's words, his death, his resurrection and ascension, and His promises of a return to accept his faithful to a share in his kingdom, when he shall take unto himself his great power and reign. In a secondary sense all who receive the apostolic testimony and declare the same to others are likewise Christ's representatives and witnesses.

It was in order that the apostles might fill this position of witnesses, and might be enabled to give us, and all, a clear testimony on the important subject of Christ's death and resurrection and ascension, which constitute the foundations for hope, that our Lord was present with them after his resurrection, and, as Luke declares, demonstrated the fact of his resurrection by "infallible proofs" – explaining to them meanwhile things pertaining to the coming Kingdom, for which he had already taught them to hope and to pray, "Thy Kingdom come," and a share in the throne which he had already declared would be for the faithful. This explanation respecting the Kingdom was necessary, because, as Jews, they had properly looked for an earthly Kingdom, and now needed to be informed that before the earthly Kingdom could be established a heavenly Kingdom must first be inaugurated; and that they were eligible to a place in the heavenly Kingdom, through which, in due time, the blessing would come to an earthly Kingdom, and ultimately extend to all the families of the earth. This information was not due to them so long as the old or Jewish dispensation remained – up to the time of our Lord's death. It would only be "meat in due season" after the Jewish nation, through its representatives, the priests and doctors of the law, had rejected Christ and crucified him. But now that the new dispensation was fully inaugurated, it was "meat in due season" to the faithful to know that God, having rejected fleshly Israel from being his peculiar people, for a time, to gather a spiritual Israel, to be the holy nation, the peculiar people, the royal priesthood, to show forth his praise, and to constitute his chief agents for the blessing of the world in due time. This work of calling the spiritual Israelites, and of inducting such as would heed the call into the new relationship, was the work being committed to the apostles – the things pertaining to the Kingdom of God, which our Lord unfolded to the disciples in such measure as they were able to appreciate them – leaving to the future the work of guiding them into all truth, into the deep things of God, under the ministration of the holy spirit, which he had previously promised would show them things to come. – John 16:13.

Our Lord wished the apostles to distinctly understand that they were not then in the condition to undertake the new work, and that the proper time for action had not yet come – that they would not be prepared until they should receive the holy spirit, a power and unction from the Father, which would specially qualify, enable and guide them in the important service of their commission. Moreover, it would be to them, and to all believers through them, a divine evidence or attestation; first, respecting our Lord's work, that it was approved of the Father, and constituted a basis of reconciliation by which sinners might return to harmony with their Creator; and evidence, further, to those consecrating themselves to the divine service, and receiving the holy spirit, that they were accepted of the Father in the Beloved, and owned as children and heirs of his promises, joint-heirs with Jesus Christ their Lord, if so be that they would suffer with him that they might also be glorified together, in the Kingdom, when the due time should come. – Rom. 8:16-17.

It was appropriate at this time, and in view of the Lord's instructions respecting the Kingdom and the preparatory work for it, which the apostles were commissioned to do, that they should wonder and inquire respecting the time of its establishment; and not knowing that he was about to leave them, they inquired respecting the ancient promises of Israel's restoration, whether or not these were now due to be fulfilled – whether or not Israel was to be released from the domination of the Romans, and to become the great nation of the world, and to be used of God in the blessing of other nations.

It is worthy of careful note that our Lord did not rebuke the apostles, nor tell them that the thoughts represented in their question were foolish, and would never have a realization. On the contrary, his answer clearly implies that their expectations at least approximated the truth; but that as respected the time of their fulfillment He was not at liberty to gratify their curiosity. The things they referred to, which God had promised, would be fulfilled in due course, but the times and the seasons were not for them to know, the Father retaining them in his own power, not being pleased as yet to reveal this feature of his plan. Our Lord, however, clearly indicates that before the restoration of Israel to divine favor must come in the mission of his apostles, to which he was now appointing them. He would not inform them whether their mission would be quickly accomplished or not, but as a matter of fact, we see that it has already extended over more than eighteen centuries. The restoration of Israel to divine favor cannot take place until Christ, and his apostles, and all his faithful, shall first have accomplished the work of witnessing to the world, and of selecting the full complete number of the "elect" – spiritual Israel. This is the work of chief concern: the times and seasons for the fulfillment of God's promises to Israel after the flesh, and to the world, are to be left in God's power, with the assurance that when the due time shall come the brethren shall not be in darkness on this subject, but be guided by the holy spirit into this and all other truths, as they become meat in due season [R2925 : page 394] for the household of faith.

The witnessing properly began at Jerusalem, the center of Judaism, which God himself had chosen, as represented in the Temple. It properly began with those who had knowledge of Jesus and his crucifixion, – amongst whom were the most devout Jews from all quarters of the earth. It was appropriate that the truth respecting our Lord's resurrection and ascension and glorification with the Father, and respecting the gathering of spiritual Israel, and our Lord's second coming to receive them and to exalt them with himself in the Messianic Kingdom, should be declared to those who had been witnesses and instigators of his ignominious death.

This, like the other features of the Gospel, is totally unlike anything else known in history. Never before, either in fact or in conjecture, did people ascribe divine honors to one who had been put to death as a criminal. Worldly sentiments would be to the [R2925 : page 394] contrary of this, as being unwise, and wholly unlikely to appeal to the sentiments of the people. And further, worldly wisdom, even if it had adopted as a leader one who had been publicly executed as a criminal, would never have thought of beginning the testimony close to the scenes of the ignominy, but would have gone afar off to proclaim that an innocent one had been betrayed and unjustly sacrificed. God so arranged the matter that the truth should stand forth for acceptance or rejection by the Jews in the most unfavorable light, so that only those who were Israelites indeed, and ready to sacrifice every earthly advantage as Jews, and to make themselves of no reputation, and thus take up their cross and follow the Lamb, – these alone would be appealed to, or incline to follow the cause of Jesus – defamed as a Nazarene and as a malefactor, and as specially cursed, as it is written, "Cursed is everyone that hangeth upon a tree." Thus would the Lord hedge his cause about, and keep out of it, through unpopularity, as well as by subsequent persecutions, all who were not Israelites indeed: – thus the Church was kept, not only free from doctrinal errors, but also comparatively free from tares, until the apostles fell asleep, and the enemy came in and sowed tares amongst the wheat. – Matt. 13:25.

The witnessing has progressed, until at the present time at least a cursory knowledge of the facts upon which the Lord's message is based obtains throughout the habitable world. This fact of itself, if there were no other evidences, would seem to imply that the witnessing time had about expired, and hence that the object of the Gospel age had about been accomplished in the selection of the full elect number of the faithful witnesses, and that their work of blessing the world would soon be due. The expression, "Unto the uttermost parts of the earth," is not to be understood as implying every quarter of the globe, but rather a term of that day corresponding in meaning to our present expression, "everywhere."

Apparently much misapprehension prevails to-day respecting the character of the testimony or witnessing to be done. Many of those who preach and of those who hear have lost sight of the real message, the real witnessing, and especially rejoice in and promulgate other gospels – evolution, science, philosophy, human uplift, political regeneration, churchianity, socialism, etc. They may think that they are witnessing in harmony with the Lord's direction, but we cannot assent to this. The Lord's disciples were to bear witness to him, and not to themselves nor to human institutions; they were to bear witness to his testimony respecting the Kingdom, and not to bear witness to various human theories, snares and sophistries. It is well that all who are inquiring for the "old paths," in which the apostles followed the Lamb, should note this point, and should see to it that their daily witnessing, in word and in deed, testified of Jesus; of the fact that he is a living Savior, whose power, through his word and spirit, works in his followers to will and to do his good pleasure, and to show forth the praises of him who has called them out of darkness into his marvelous light; out of the kingdom of darkness into the kingdom of his dear Son, which Kingdom they are to hope for and to wait and prepare for, to the intent that they may be meet for this, "the inheritance of the saints in light."

The instruction that they should tarry, and not begin this work of witnessing until endued with power from on high in a few days, implied their unfitness for the work as natural men; and we see abundant evidence of this in many respects. The narrative is that they were men of humble birth and limited education – "unlearned men" – and this was apparent in some respects, even after they received the holy spirit, for their friends, as well as their enemies, bore witness to it, while acknowledging also their ability under the new conditions. The Apostle Paul, who took the place of Judas, as one of the twelve, being a talented and learned man, did not, we may suppose, show forth the peculiar powers of the holy spirit so remarkably as the other eleven, who were unlearned. He had the holy spirit in equal measure, or, indeed, we may say, that because of his natural abilities and talents he was enabled to enjoy and use in the service a still larger measure of the holy spirit than the others; but this power of God, working in him, would not be so manifest to the observer as in the case of the unlearned, because the divine wisdom and power would to some extent be accredited to his natural ability and talents. Herein, then, we see another manifestation of the divine wisdom in so selecting the twelve foundation stones of the New Jerusalem (Rev. 21:14), as to demonstrate to all that the truth, as presented, was not of their concoction and elaboration. And yet it was needful to have amongst the apostles a man of learning, qualified to be an able minister of the truth, and to present it under the direction and guidance of the holy spirit in such a manner as to be a further testimony that the truths declared were of divine origin, and worthy of all acceptation.

While claiming that the twelve apostles were unique, separate, distinct, in the divine plan, from all the other members of the Church, we believe, nevertheless, that the divine plan of operation in respect to the general work is outlined in this, our Lord's declaration, "Tarry – until ye be endued with power from on high" – before participating in any sense of the word in public witnessing. Our thought is, that while all men may properly be called to repentance, reformation of life, temperance and every good work, and [R2925 : page 395] may be called to faith in Christ, as the Great Redeemer, nevertheless, none are called to be God's witnesses, mouth-pieces, representatives, ambassadors, etc., except those who have gone still further, and recognizing themselves as bought with a price, even the precious blood of Christ, have made full consecration of their every power and talent to the Lord and to his service. These consecrated ones should then wait until they experience something of the divine power working in themselves to will, and, as far as possible, to do the Lord's good pleasure, before beginning to bear witness to others.

And the Lord's sheep should be careful to select as leaders, etc., only such as give evidence of having come under the influence of the holy anointing of the spirit of God. And this, no matter how much of natural ability the would-be leader may possess; indeed, the more his natural ability the more danger from his leading. Only those anointed of the spirit are to be recognized amongst the Lord's people as in any sense of the word representatives and mouth-pieces of the head. As it was the spirit of the Lord God upon our Lord Jesus that anointed or qualified him to preach the Gospel, so it must be the same anointing received of him that will qualify any for this service of preaching or witnessing, in a manner that will be acceptable to the Lord and profitable to his flock. (Isa. 61:1.) All who are not in the attitude of full consecration to the Lord, full submission to the divine will, are in opposition, to some extent; and to the extent that they are in opposition they are wrong, or wicked. "And unto the wicked God saith, What hast thou to do, to take my words into thy mouth, seeing that thou hatest instruction (refusing to submit themselves to the Lord's arrangement) and castest my words behind thee [neglectfully]?" – Psa. 50:17.

The narrative is brief, and we cannot even conjecture how amply the Lord discussed these matters with the disciples, but when he had explained them amply – or at least to the extent that they (the holy spirit not yet having come upon them) were able then to receive instruction – he was taken from them up into a cloud, gradually receding until lost to their sight.

This matter of our Lord's ascension was evidently arranged, as were all the other features of his manifestations to the disciples after his resurrection, with a view to the establishment of their faith as natural men; and with the view to the establishment of the faith of all other natural men who might be seeking a basis of faith in this witnessing. As we have already seen, our Lord at this time was quickened in spirit, and not in the flesh. (1 Pet. 3:18.) Yet he was appearing in the flesh, even as angels have ofttimes in the past appeared as men. These appearances in different bodies were not deceptions, but demonstrations of a fact – the fact that he was no longer dead, but alive. They were demonstrations in the best manner possible, because as natural men they could not see a spirit being without injury to their sight, and without a corresponding trepidation, which would have quite disqualified them for cool reflection and for instruction such as our Lord wished to impart.

The two men in white apparel who suddenly appeared in their midst were unquestionably angels, manifested in human form. It was no more a deception of the disciples for the angels to appear as men than it was when the Lord appeared as a man. Again the object desired was better served by this manner of appearing, than if they had been miraculously enabled to see two shining beings, bright above the brightness of the sun at noonday, upon whom they could not have looked, and before whom they would have fallen, as dead men. But beholding them as men, yet knowing from their glistening garments, etc., that they were really spirit beings manifested in the flesh, the disciples were able to control their feelings, so as to receive their message, – "Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus, which was received up from you into heaven shall so come in like manner as ye beheld him going into heaven."

This was a suitable conclusion to the wonderful series of events of those forty days. It furnished a miraculous heavenly attestation that their senses had [R2926 : page 395] not been deceived – that their Master, "changed," had really been with them, appearing in various forms during these forty days, and that he had now gone from them. It consoled them, too, in reminding them that he had not left them forever, but had already promised them that he would come again and receive them unto himself. This evidently was the hope of their hearts through coming dreary days and dark hours of tribulation, persecution, defamation and suffering. They not only endured, as seeing him who is invisible, but as servants who hope for and wait for the return of their Lord, and the nuptial feast and Kingdom blessings then to be instituted.

We find this longing for and hoping for and waiting for the coming King in the writings of all the apostles. It is John who exclaims, "Come, Lord Jesus!" It is James who says, "Be patient, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord." It is Peter who encourages the brethren, by pointing out that shortly, when the Chief Shepherd will appear, they shall receive a crown of glory, which fadeth not away. It is Jude, who speaks of the Lord's coming, with myriads of his holy ones. It is Paul who urges faithfulness, and assures the brethren that not only himself, but all who love his appearing, shall then receive a crown of righteousness. – Rev. 22:20; Jas. 5:7; 1 Pet. 5:4; Jude 14; 2 Tim. 4:8.

And if this hope so encouraged, strengthened and upheld the early Christian Church, should its influence be less today, upon us who remember that "now is our salvation nearer than when we first believed?" Nay, verily! Indeed, when the light of present truth, shining on the pathway, shows us that he who was to come has come, and has not tarried – that the promises of God through the prophets, written aforetime for our admonition, are fulfilled; that we are living in the harvest-time of this age; that the Chief Reaper is present; that the gathering of the "wheat" into the barn, and the bundling of the "tares," for the coming fiery troubles, is in progress; and when, the eyes of our understanding being opened, we see these things in evidence about us, what manner of persons ought we to be in holy joy and faithfulness, and courage, and zeal; – to be, to do, to endure, whatsoever things our present Lord and [R2926 : page 396] Master, in his infinite wisdom and love, may mark out for us! As he declared, "The cup which the Father hath given me to drink, shall I not drink it?" So may we, with implicit confidence, say that whatever cup of experience our present Lord and Head may pour for us, his disciples, we will cheerfully partake thereof, and thus fill up the afflictions which are behind; and shortly, with all the faithful, enter into the glories of the Millennial Kingdom, which God hath in reservation for them that love him.

We have already commented upon the expression, "In like manner as ye have seen him go,"* pointing out that the manner was not a noisy one – not with either worldly or celestial commotion; – that the world was in ignorance of our Lord's going, so that only his faithful few recognized the fact, and that in like manner he will come again, unknown to the world, without commotion; – that his presence will be known only to the faithful ones, whose eyes of understanding are being opened; – until, having gathered his elect, his presence will be manifested to the world gradually in the symbolical flaming fire of the great time of trouble – in the overthrow of present institutions, preparatory to the establishment of the Kingdom of light and love.

*Millennial Dawn, Vol. II., P.153.

The disciples apparently abode together in Jerusalem, where they were all comparative strangers, their home being in Galilee. Our Lord's mother, and others of the faithful sisters, were of the company, who, in harmony with the Lord's promise, waited at Jerusalem for power from on high. Doubtless those days of waiting were not only essential to the going of our Lord into the Father's presence and the presentation before him of the merits of the ransom sacrifice, and the application of these for the benefit of mankind, but the time was necessary also for the development of the apostles – in faith and trust, through the influence of the promises the Lord had left them. It required some time for them to consider and to reason over the wonderful things they had heard from the Master's lips, and thus to get their hearts into the condition where they would be best prepared for the blessings they were expecting.

Hope is a valuable factor in Christian development still, although the object of the hope may vary from time to time. For instance, we are no longer hoping for the Pentecostal blessing, believing that it came at the time appointed, and that it has been with the Church, as a Church, ever since; and that we, in becoming united to the Lord, come under this blessed influence of the holy spirit. But while that hope has reached fruition other hopes have taken its place in our case. We are waiting also; not waiting, as the groaning creation is waiting, "for the manifestation of the sons of God," either; but we are waiting for our adoption, to wit, the deliverance of our body – the body of Christ, which we trust will shortly be completed, and ourselves be amongst those who will be "changed" to be of it. (Rom. 8:23.) What an anchor to our souls is this hope! How it makes all other interests and affairs of life comparatively insignificant! Wealth and fame, and all the things which the human heart can desire and appreciate, grand and good as some of them are, pale before this grand epiphania (bright-shining) in which we, as members of the body of Christ, hope soon to share.

[R2926 : page 396]

SPEAKING WITH OTHER TONGUES.
ACTS 2:1-11. – JAN. 12. –

"The promise is unto you and to your children." – Acts 2:39.

WAITING FOR the power from on high, the eleven apostles (and with them apparently a considerable number of believers – possibly 120 – (Acts 1:15) were rewarded with the blessing of Pentecost. They were "with one accord in one place;" they may have been expecting the blessing during the preceding nine days of their assembling, but Pentecost being a specially holy day it may have appeared to them as probable that it would bring the consummation of their hopes, and with one accord or agreement the full number were all present at the time. There is a thought here respecting the propriety of the Lord's people being at one, or in accord, in respect to the things they are seeking for and waiting for. It is to this end that the Lord has exhorted us, through the Apostle, that we forget not the assembling of ourselves together, and so much the more as we see the day drawing near – not the day of Pentecost, but a still greater and still grander day: Pentecost brought merely the first fruits of the spirit, while the day we wait for is the day of the consummation of all our hopes and of all God's promises in respect to the Church, as the Bride and joint-heir of his Son.

We cannot all come together in the literal sense, as did the apostles and the early Church on Pentecost, but we can come together into one place in another sense; we can come into the holy place, into the sanctuary or consecrated condition of heart and of life, and thus into oneness and fellowship with the Lord, and with all who are in the same holy condition, and partakers of the same blessing of the inner light of the golden candlestick, and the inner food of the table of shew-bread, and the inner communion with the Lord, represented in the golden altar and its incense. Our natural dispositions are various and their crooks and twists different; but our new natures are one, begotten of the same Father, through the same spirit. We are to seek accord as new creatures, and are to restrain, mortify and cast out the weaknesses of the flesh and the contentiousness of disposition which may be ours, accordingly – that as new creatures we may be one with the Lord and with all who are his body or Church, under the one Head or Lord, infused or energized by one spirit of obedience to the one Father, and under the control of the one law of Love.

It is not said that the holy spirit was imparted in connection with a rushing wind, but merely that there was "a sound as of a rushing wind." Neither is it said that flames or tongues of fire rested upon them, but that tongues or flames having the appearance of [R2926 : page 397] fire, as in the case of the burning bush, rested upon them. The holy spirit is an invisible power, and its impartation need not of necessity have any outward demonstration. But God's purpose was the contrary of this. He desired to accompany the holy spirit with certain manifestations which would be convincing to the apostles themselves as respected their acceptance with him, and their identification as his ministers, ambassadors of the new dispensation; he wished also to make manifest the nucleus of the Gospel Church to others, to devout Jews then in Jerusalem, attending this feast; and we think it quite probable that it was God's intention also by these gifts to manifest who were the apostles and to indicate their special office in the Church.

It is not stated specifically upon whom the tongues rested; "upon each of them" might mean upon each of the eleven apostles, or it might mean upon each of the one hundred and twenty present. Whoever the tongues sat upon were filled with the holy spirit, and [R2927 : page 397] they began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance; and this preaching with other tongues seems to have been done only by the eleven apostles, for the multitude, hearing them, exclaimed, "Are not all these which speak Galileans?" As for the eleven apostles, they were all Galileans, but as for the remainder of the one hundred and twenty, it is probable that the majority of them were Judeans, residents of Jerusalem. We incline, therefore, to suppose that while the whole room in which they were present was filled with the holy spirit, and the entire company present made partakers of the holy spirit, and immersed into it, and blessed thereby, yet, nevertheless, these outward manifestations of tongues and speaking miraculously were at first only given to the eleven, for the purpose of designating them as God's chosen instruments in connection with the new dispensation. We know that it was so subsequently; so that whoever received gifts of the holy spirit received them through the laying on of the hands of the apostles.

From the construction of the Greek text it is evident that these were not split tongues, on the heads of the favored ones, but rather that they were tongues of flame cloven or split off from a central or luminous body, tongues which emanated from one common center, and went to the heads of those for whom intended. It was not fire, however, but light. The tongues represented nothing akin to destruction, which fire would symbolize. They represented, on the contrary, enlightenment, knowledge, intelligence, and implied that a holy intelligence or light from the Lord had come upon the recipients, marking them as the Lord's mouthpieces; indicating that from henceforth their tongues should show forth his praise, to the blessing and enlightenment of the world. And so indeed it has been; those poor fishermen, illiterate, unlearned as respects earthly education, under the power of the Lord's spirit became mighty indeed in the pulling down of strongholds of error, and the scattering of darkness by the illumination of the minds of those prepared for the word of God's grace.

Some have made the mistake of supposing that these tongues of flame were fulfillments of the prediction of John the Baptist, who said of Christ, "He shall baptize you with the holy spirit and with fire." (Luke 3:16.) This was the fulfillment of only the first part; it was merely the baptism of the holy spirit; it was not the baptism of fire; – the baptism of fire and destruction was for a totally different class. The faithful of the Jews were to receive the baptism of the holy spirit, and the unfaithful majority of them were to receive the baptism of fiery trouble, and they did receive it a little further along. After the holy spirit, coming upon the infant Church at Pentecost, had searched, sifted and winnowed out of the Jewish dispensation all of the true "wheat," gathering it into the garner of the Gospel (spirit) dispensation, then the fire came upon the "chaff." (Luke 3:17.) The Apostle speaks of this, calling it wrath, saying "Wrath is come upon them to the uttermost." – 1 Thess. 2:16.

The tongues of light which came upon the faithful at Pentecost did not continue with them, – even as the dove, which was seen descending upon Jesus, did not continue to be seen. Both the dove and the flame of light were merely outward representations, not to deceive, but for the purpose of teaching a great lesson, for the purpose of convincing that the promised blessing and power had come. The Lord's people who since come under the influence of the holy spirit have neither signs of flames nor doves, nor sounds of rushing wind; nor do they speak miraculously. They, nevertheless, come into and are made partakers of the holy spirit, which no longer uses these outward manifestations because they are no longer necessary; the Church having been established, and the fact of the holy spirit's impartation having been demonstrated, we now are to accept the same by faith, and to permit it to dwell in us richly, and to cultivate in our hearts and lives the fruits of the spirit, instead of expecting them or other things as miraculous gifts.

The tongues of light are a forceful illustration of the fact that God purposed to use human tongues as his agencies in promulgating his message and calling out his elect from the world. An energy of soul evidently went with the outward demonstration, giving a courage to the apostles of which previously, as humble and unlearned men, they were naturally deficient. Note, for instance, how it led Peter, who, fifty-three days before had denied the Lord, saying, "I know not the man," for fear of the Jews, to now courageously stand up in the midst of those very Jews, and to proclaim him as his Master, as the Son of God risen from the dead and ascended up on high; as the great Mediator and High Priest of the new order. It gave him the courage to charge home to the hearts of his hearers their responsibility for the crime. So also the other disciples, who previously had fled from their arrested Master, were now courageous to tell forth his praise. Not only had they become convinced, by the proofs received, respecting his resurrection and his ascension, but now these proofs were added to by the fulfillment of his promises, evidencing the fact that he had ascended to the Father, and that he had been favorably received, and that these gifts of the spirit were evidences of the return of divine favor toward them, – of their acceptance in the Beloved One, and of their right and authority to go forth in his name and [R2927 : page 398] to declare remission of sins to all the penitent who would come unto the Father through him.

At this particular season of the year the city of Jerusalem was crowded with visitors from various parts of the world. We are to remember that millions of the ten-tribed kingdom, called Israel, were taken captive, and later millions more of the two-tribe kingdom, called Judah, was also taken captive, to Babylon; and that these millions were scattered as immigrants in the various districts of Assyria and Babylonia, where they settled down, making these strange lands their home, so that when the opportunity for returning from captivity came in the days of Cyrus, and by his edict, only a very small proportion of the two tribes, and a still smaller proportion of the ten-tribes, returned to Palestine – the great majority preferring to remain in the countries where they at one time had been captives, but where, during their long exile, they had become at home and formed attachments. From that time on all distinction as between Israel and Judah was at an end; and all were recognized as at first, as Israelites, and all came under the general name of Jews. Thus it was that our Lord and the apostles addressed the people as Israelites and Jews, using the terms interchangeably, and that they spoke of the dispersed ones indiscriminately, as Jews and as Israelites also.

It was at seasons like the Passover and Pentecost that numbers of devout Jews, not only from all parts of Judea and Galilee, went to Jerusalem, but also the "dispersed" Jews of devout spirit from the surrounding countries came thither, to worship the Lord and to obey the command requiring all his faithful to assemble themselves before him at Jerusalem. Thus it was that at the time of these visits the city would sometimes have a crowded population of from two to three millions of people, chiefly adults. The city was crowded at the time of this Pentecostal blessing, and a great concourse of people was drawn together by the miraculous manifestation of divine power amongst the disciples. Some of these, hearing the apostles speaking in various languages which they could not understand, passed on, declaring that they had no interest in the matter, and that probably the speakers were intoxicated, and did not know what they were saying themselves; but others recognized their own tongues and dialects, some apostles speaking in one tongue, some in another; and when they perceived that all of the speakers were Galileans they were astounded, especially in view of the fact that they were unlearned men. The miracle helped to impress the situation upon their minds, and we may be sure that the words spoken were also powerful. We cannot suppose that the Lord would make a special manifestation of power without an equal manifestation of wisdom. Indeed, wherever we find people claiming various gifts and powers, and find these to be accompanied by nothing that is reasonable and logical and comprehensible, we are justified in doubting that the matter is of the Lord at all. It is reasonable to suppose that when the holy spirit gives utterance it will utter that which is good and reasonable and sound of logic, and not folly. And so we read that the hearers said, "We do hear them speak in our tongues the mighty works of God."

The words of their discourse are not given us in detail here, but we can readily discern that the mighty works of God which filled their own hearts and minds were those wonderful things which they had just been learning from the Lord, viz., that God's time had come for conferring the blessing long before promised through Abraham; – that Jesus was the Messiah, whom the Father had sent, and whose death was necessary in order to the carrying out of the plan, as our Lord had declared to them, "Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into his glory?" (Luke 24:26.) It was theirs further to declare another wonderful work of God, – that in addition to Messiah, the Head, God was about to gather out of the people a little flock to be joint heirs with [R2928 : page 398] Messiah, in the Kingdom, preparatory to its establishment for the blessing of the world. We may be sure that it was the true Gospel that they preached, and not the terrible mixture of confusion about hell torments, which since "the dark ages" has falsely claimed the right to be called the Gospel of Christ. They preached the Gospel of salvation, and not a message of damnation; and their message was in the power and demonstration of the spirit.

The miraculous gift of tongues is no longer with us, yet the same spirit, received by us, dwelling in us richly and abounding more and more, gives us utterance, also, in respect to the wonderful works of God. This is still true of all the Royal Priesthood, the consecrated. As the Apostle expressed it in his day, "Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God, judge ye (for yourselves); for we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard." (Acts 4:19,20.) The enlightenment of our understanding has shown us Jesus as the Redeemer of the world, and our share in his redemptive work; and also our acceptance with the Father, through him, to be his joint-heirs in the Kingdom, and to be fellow-servants with him in the present time, in bearing the reproaches of the true Gospel in this time, when the great Adversary is deceiving the world in respect to these matters, putting light for darkness and darkness for light.

More and more we, too, speak with other tongues. Those whose tongues had blasphemed the holy name now give thanks and praise; those who had ignorantly misrepresented the divine character and plan now vie with each other in showing forth the praises of him who has called us out of darkness into his marvelous light. The influence of the holy spirit transforms our sentiments and expressions respecting the brethren also, and respecting the world, so that instead of hatred and anger and malice we have love and gentleness and patience; and instead of our tongues showing forth envy and bitterness and pride, worldly ambition, etc., they show forth the new mind in gentleness and wisdom, in helpfulness and love – toward all men, and especially toward the household of faith. These, our new tongues, and the new living epistles which they represent to our families, our neighbors and the world, are beautifully expressed by the Prophet to be our "song" – our praise, our acknowledgement to God for his grace and truth; as it is written, "He hath put a new song into my mouth, even the loving kindness of our God."

[R2928 : page 399]

INTERESTING LETTERS.

Dear Brother Russell: –

Many, many times have I been going to write to you, both last year and this year, but did not like to trouble you with any of our depressing affairs. I did once mention something to you of our troubles, but always hoped that we would have good news to tell you, and thus delayed writing till now.

But although we cannot rejoice in worldly prosperity, we do rejoice in Christ Jesus and in the fact that he died for our sins according to the Scriptures and that through Christ we are strengthened and enabled to rejoice in all that passes over us, knowing that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to His purpose, and may we be amongst that number.

Being made perfect through suffering is a wonderful providence of the Lord. I saw very clearly and quickly God's "plan of the ages," and rejoiced in it and at once came out from human organizations, and rejoiced to be counted worthy to suffer anything in connection therewith, but to go through these last two years were altogether unlooked for, and from our view point would seem in no way satisfactory either toward God or man, and although our way has thus been hedged in, and our whole course changed, and that not by our own doing or choosing but rather the opposite, nevertheless I see that unless there were a need for it, in some way, it would not have been permitted. I now see it is no light matter to essay to take up the Ark of God, or to put one's hand thereto. That those who will ascend into the hill of God must have clean hands and a pure heart. That one must be very sensible of God's preserving care and fully realize the meaning of the Lord's prayer, "Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, or the Evil One." That those who are actively engaged in the Lord's harvest work need great encouragement and strengthening of their hands in God. When thinking on these things I determined that I would no longer refrain from writing you, for fear that my long silence might cause you anxiety of mind, rather than peace of mind, as I intended. And now, dear brother, I desire to express to you my great appreciation of all the helps and blessings which the Lord has sent us through your hands. Every Tower would seem to be more blessed than another. That article in last Tower, "Finally, be all of one mind," showing forth the proper use of combativeness on one's self was simply grand. I thanked and praised God after reading it. Pray for us that we may receive "mercy of the Lord," and be led in such a way as that we will be to God's glory in being made useful in His great cause, and dwell in His house forever. May the Lord preserve you from all evil and keep you as the apple of His eye and that you may be more than Conqueror for His own name's sake.

With our united Christian love to yourself, your household, and all your fellow helpers in the great harvest field, I am your brother in hope,

C. H. HOUSTON, Scotland.

Dear Brother Russell: –

In a recent Tower you say, "Thenceforth it is the business of the 'new creature' in Christ to use up in the divine service, as wisely, economically, and yet rapidly as possible, all the earthly things" etc. This puzzled me on the first and second readings, for I thought, Why, our Lord ate and slept, and rested sometimes, and so does Brother Russell. I could use up the 'old creature' much more rapidly than I am doing, but I surely ought not to do anything suicidal. A third reading brought it straight for me, – such haste would not be for the best interests of the Lord's work, – even my little portion. It would not be sacrificing "wisely, economically." Then the text came to mind, "The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord." I must go neither too slow nor must I outrun my Guide. Not being yet made ready, the Lord hath in mind even for me, certain experiences and provings necessary for development in Christ-likeness, and I want them every one. Also, my blind aunt greatly needs me as yet, and I ought not to hasten too fast but keep my nerves and temper in condition to serve her acceptably. So I pray the Lord, "Order my steps in Thy Word!" And I believe He will.

ALICE L. DARLINGTON.
Pennsylvania.

page 399

Dear Brother Russell: –

Although I have been interested in the Harvest Truth for nearly two years, I have never expressed my gratitude to you, the channel through whom this great blessing has reached me.

I was first attracted to this message by my sister, Mrs. Lee, – whom we believe now to be with our Lord; and since her death, I too, have given up all I have or hope for, respecting earthly things for joint-heirship in God's kingdom.

I do thank you for the helpful words and sound doctrines found in the columns of your journal. My prayer is for you to obtain grace, wisdom and strength to feed us unto the end of the church's journey through the wilderness of sin.

I have much faith in the prayer of a righteous man, therefore ask you to remember me at the throne of grace, that our Father may guide my every step and help me to be faithful unto death.

Enclosed please find my "Good Hopes" offering for this month. With Christian love, I remain,

Gratefully yours,
K. M. DAY, – California.

[R2928 : page 399]

Dear Brother Russell: –

I want to write and tell you how I am rejoicing in the truth to-day: the blessed truth as it is in Jesus. Words cannot tell of the peace that fills my heart, since I have come to understand the full meaning of the glad tidings, of which the angels sang at our Lord's first advent.

At twenty-one years of age, I was converted, and joined the M.E. Church; but I was always so troubled about the eternal torment of those who did not seek and serve the Lord, many of whom I knew to be really better in life than the majority of church members. For years I struggled to believe it just and right, against my own heart's protest, because orthodoxy said so, and finally I had to put it out of my mind, or lose my faith in the love and mercy of God. About three years ago, I went to visit friends in the country, and while there a booklet entitled "The Old Theology" was given me, which set me to thinking and proving its truth by God's Word.

The light began to dawn on my heart and soon the tract, "What the Scriptures say about Hell," was given me by dear Brother L., together with "Tabernacle Shadows of Better Sacrifices," and Watch Towers from time to time. I saw more and more of the wonderful love and mercy of God in the gift of Jesus, a Savior to bless not only the few, but all, all. And in answer to my constant prayer that I might understand the real truth, the light has filled my soul; and, praise the Lord, the truth makes me free indeed!

I had been a teacher in Sunday-school for years, but soon I was made to understand forcibly that no such doctrine could be tolerated there. They urged me to remain and believe as I wished, but keep it to myself; but I could not teach a class, what I knew was false doctrine, so sent in my resignation. Then came the most bitter denunciations from the pulpit of such (as the pastor called it) damnable heresy. I withdrew from the membership of the church, and since that time I have had an unutterable peace. How glad I am to be free from the cruel bondage of creeds, and forms, which now are meaningless to me.

I have been a reader of the Watch Tower for the last year, through the kindness of a dear brother who subscribed for me. It has been such a help and comfort to me and after I read it I have sent it by mail, and have given it personally to those whom I felt would be helped into the light by it. I have also been giving out the tracts and booklets from the Bible House, as I want to scatter the seed which has cleared away the false ideals of "Sectarianism" from my own heart.

And now may God's blessing rest more and more upon you, as His instrument, to send this blessed truth to longing hearts.

Thankfully yours,
M. A. SMITH, – New York.