page 161
June 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. XXVI.JUNE 1, 1905.No. 11
CONTENTS.
Views from the Watch Tower 163
Religious Liberty in Russia 163
The Open Shop and Socialism 164
The Duty of Church Membership 164
Scholarly Infidelity Claimed 164
Spiritualistic Manifestations Increasing 165
Thoughts Regarding Jonah 166
The Message of the Risen Christ 167
Seven Golden Candlesticks 168
"In His Right Hand Seven Stars" 169
The Heavenly Jerusalem 170
"The River of the Water of Life" 171
"The Healing of the Nations" 172
Bible Study for June 174
Encouraging Words from Faithful Workers 174

'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 162

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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GENERAL CONVENTION, NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y., JULY 8-11

THE RAILROADS of the New England, Trunk Lines, Central, Western and South-western Associations will sell tickets to this Convention at one fare and one-third, plus 25 cents, on the "Certificate Plan." You purchase a regular single-fare ticket to Niagara Falls, N.Y., telling your ticket-agent at the time that you desire a Certificate, that you are going to the WATCH TOWER BIBLE & TRACT SOCIETY'S CONVENTION, and which will entitle you to purchase a return ticket at one-third a regular fare. Hold on to that certificate, as without it you would be charged full fare when buying your return ticket. The Certificates will need to be signed, but we will publicly announce at the Convention the name of the brother who will attend to the matter for you and save you all trouble.

ACCOMMODATIONS should be secured in advance to avoid confusion and trouble to yourself and the Entertainment Committee. Therefore, if you will attend, write at once, saying briefly (a) how many will be of your party; (b) how many of each sex; (c) if colored, so state; (d) married couples desirous of rooming together should so state. AS TO RATES. – It will be safe to count that a room for one person will cost $1.00 per night in a good, respectable house, or a room for two $1.25. Unless you specify to the contrary, arrangements will be made for two in a bed and two beds in a large room at the cost of 50 cents each person. MEALS can be secured from 15 cents up, according to quantity, kind and service.

Do not write on this subject at length. Tell us about things at the Convention. Give the information briefly and to the point. A postal card will do. Address the WATCH TOWER BIBLE & TRACT SOCIETY, 612 Arch St., Allegheny, Pa.

OTHER EXCURSIONS

From many points there are other Special Excursions run every summer to Niagara Falls. Some of these are at extremely low rates. It will be well for each to inquire of the railway ticket agents of his own city on this subject, and to select the excursion that will suit his convenience best. But take our own Excursion mentioned above unless you can do better.

GET READY PROPERLY

Prepare your heart for a blessing. Come to the Convention in the proper spirit – as a disciple, a learner. Come intent also on doing good as well as getting good, of consoling and encouraging others, as well as to be yourself comforted. Above all, come realizing that the Lord himself is the fountain of blessings, and remembering his word – not by might, nor by power, but by the Lord's Spirit are we to expect the blessings we hope for. In making ready and en route do not forget this important item, for on it your share in the Convention's blessing greatly depends.

[R3565 : page 163]

VIEWS FROM THE WATCH TOWER.
RELIGIOUS LIBERTY IN RUSSIA.

THE CZAR has commemorated Easter by an edict granting religious freedom to all the religions of his empire except the Jewish. The principal newspapers of the world seem to consider this one of the most momentous events in Russia's history. It is presumed to be granted with a view to the conciliation of the various classes affected.

The Greek Catholic Church is still the "orthodox," the State Church however, with advantages every way over all competitors. For some time all religions have been tolerated in Russia, but hampered by various disabilities, and none were permitted to either publicly or privately proselyte. A man born a Mohammedan, for instance, might continue thus to worship, but if he ever became a Greek Catholic it would go hard with any who [R3566 : page 163] would convert him back to Mohammedanism or anything else, and in leaving the Greek Church he would forfeit all his civil rights. Indeed only the Greek Catholics had any civil rights. Others could not hold property, were debarred from certain schools, and although compelled to do military service they could not rank higher than privates. They were not permitted to erect church or school buildings nor to circulate controversial literature. Their marriages were "illegal," unless performed by a Greek Catholic priest, etc. It is estimated that about one-third of the Czar's subjects are benefitted by this "ukase" or order. The chief party of dissenters in Russia are styled "Old Believers." These, though but slightly different from the Greek Catholics in forms, have been persecuted for nearly two hundred and fifty years. After referring to these "Old Believers," The Herald says: –

"The humbler dissenters have had a much harder time, being hunted down until secretly they gave rise to a breed of sects. One preached redemption by suicide and a fiery or a bloody baptism; others worshiped images of Napoleon as the Messiah, believing that he escaped to Siberia and would return some day and establish a reign of justice and peace, and still others indulged in most licentious rites. Of these dissenters there are about 12,000,000.

"The Emperor's act will affect about forty millions belonging to alien faiths, such as the Catholics, and Lutherans of Poland and the Baltic Provinces, the Protestants of Finland and the followers of Islam and Buddha in the Urals, the Crimea, the Caucasus, Turkestan and Central Asia."

The Chicago Record-Herald says: –

"The Easter decree seems to put an end to all religious persecution. Secession from the State Church is not to be punished as a crime and is not to involve any loss or forfeiture of rights. Dissenters are to be permitted to establish monasteries and schools, print and circulate religious works and maintain missions. It is stated that the decree also affects the millions belonging to alien faiths.

"Those who know the influence of the orthodox church of Russia will regard this decree as more revolutionary even than that of March. The right – indeed the duty – of enforcing conformity and preventing heresy, within the church has been aggressively asserted by the exponents of the old policy, and even the priests, who a few weeks ago published a bold appeal for the separation of the church from the bureaucratic organization and the restoration of the independence it enjoyed prior to the abolition of the patriarchate by Peter the Great did not go so far as to include a demand for real religious freedom. As the liberals pointed out, the priests wanted more power and dignity for the church, but not more liberty for the individual subject. The Czar has declared the movement for church independence inopportune, but in conferring religious freedom on the empire he has done more than that movement contemplated. And religious liberty spells other liberty. It is an earnest as well as an achievement."

The New York Tribune remarks on the exception of the Jews: –

"The Jews, five million strong, are still outlawed, That may be because the Jewish religion is esteemed in Russia less highly than the Mohammedan. It may be because the Jews are a nation without a country, and no foreign government is inclined to champion their cause, and therefore no political end is to be served by emancipating them. Whatever the reason, this omission must be deplored as gravely marring what would [R3566 : page 164] otherwise be one of the most splendid acts in the history of Russian government."

*                         *                         *

Apparently conciliatory measures will avert any immediate collapse of the Russian government; but many of her sons are incessantly planning a complete revolution. It will doubtless come in due course within the next ten years, as a part of the great world-trouble predicted at the consummation of this age.

THE OPEN SHOP AND SOCIALISM.

A builder of large experience, a WATCH TOWER reader, sends us a clipping from The Builder, with the remark, – "This will cause a rapid growth in Socialism." We agree that it will have this effect, and that Socialism means ultimately the Bible-predicted anarchy, though we are equally sure that many of the best and noblest Socialists are totally blind to this result. We quote the article entire: –

EIDLITZ ON ARBITRATION

"At a dinner given by the Contractors' Protective Association in New York recently Charles L. Eidlitz, president of the Building Trades Employers' Association, declared, in responding to the toast, 'Arbitration,' that the next fight with the building trades unions in that city will be for 'the open shop.'

"Continuing, Mr. Eidlitz said: 'We will have peace for a year, possibly for a year and a half, and then, I am confident, trouble will break out again. But our fight then will not be along the line of union principles. It will be for the open shop – the non-union shop.

"Arbitration reminds me of the practice of taking candy with medicine in order to make the dose more pleasant. So it is with arbitration according to the theory of union workmen. They seek arbitration as candy in order to administer to us a dose which at all times is severe. The labor unions of to-day believe there is only one way to settle a labor trouble, and that way is their way.

"'Greater labor troubles within a year and a half in the building trades than we have ever had, with an "open shop" for us all at the end of the struggle, is my prediction.

"'It has been said that the only good Indian is a dead Indian. I would change that so as to say that the sentiment of the men who would erect buildings here, if they only had half a chance, is that the only good union, so far as our business is concerned, is a dead one. Arbitration has proven a failure and our only hope lies in the "open shop". That is sure to come in the building trades within a year and a half at the most.'"

The Builder.
THE DUTY OF CHURCH MEMBERSHIP.

The Pittsburg Christian Advocate publishes a query from a Methodist minister as follows: –

"Within the limits of my pastoral charge are a number of professedly Christian people who do not seem to realize it to be their duty to become members of any Church. Otherwise they give evidence of sincerity in their profession. What scriptural arguments may be brought to bear in order to convince them of their duty to the visible Church?"

The Advocate's editor proceeds to prove that every true Christian should belong to some one of the numerous man-made sects; – should get behind some one of the numerous man-made creed-fences; – should declare I am of Wesley, or Calvin, or Luther or some man; – should thus separate himself from other fellow-members of the same body of Christ; – should belong to men and not merely to Christ, as the Scriptures direct.

Of course The Advocate did not put the matter in this its true form, but, following the general delusion, argues that whoever is not a member of a sect is not a member of the Church of Christ.

As the question evidently refers to WATCH TOWER readers who stand fast in the liberty wherewith Christ makes free and avoid all sectarian yokes of bondage, we give our answer to the question very briefly, thus: –

Every true Christian, that is every believer in the atonement, secured by the precious blood, who has consecrated his all to his Savior and is striving daily even though stumblingly to walk in his steps, has a duty toward the visible Church – toward the fellow-members of the Church of Christ.

(1) He should recognize all such and that without partiality, loving and striving to serve them as "brethren" in deed and in doctrine.

(2) Should he find these "brethren" bound in sectarian "bundles" (Matt. 13:30) he should not join a "bundle" to please them and encourage them in their error; but standing fast in his liberty in Christ he should seek the deliverance of the "brethren." His duty is to lift up the standard and get the true wheat out of all the tare-bundles into the same liberty, in union with Christ, the only Head.

(3) If he cannot have full fellowship at first, he will be all the more in the position the Savior himself occupied before he got a faithful few delivered from Jewish bondage and error. He should be just as kind and helpful to opposing brethren as their wrong ideas and position will permit; and he should foster fellowship specially with those who more and more hear the voice of the Shepherd and come out of Babylon.

(4) The great mistake seems to be in what is called a Church. As bricks and beams and stones do not make a church, neither is every assemblage of well-dressed people a Church. Christ's Church is composed only of those united to him in faith and obedience, and these will know and fellowship each other always, and need not names, badges, grips and passwords.

SCHOLARLY INFIDELITY CLAIMED.

"An educated man who would to-day quote the Bible as an authority on any physical subject would be an object of ridicule in the eyes of all educated hearers. Our Bible is but the mould of two thousand years ago into which was poured the fundamental principles of religion. Its facts are not history as they have been considered for the past nineteen centuries. Indeed, there is no history in the Bible."

These were the words of President J. Gould Schurman of Cornell University yesterday when he addressed [R3567 : page 165] 1,200 students from the pulpit of Sage chapel, the occasion being the first Sunday of the second semester of the university year.

His subject was "The Christianity of To-day."

President Schurman said that the Christ of the twentieth century must be admitted to be different from the Christ of the preceding nineteen centuries. The Bible, he said, can no longer be considered a textbook of science. It seems strange to us that men should ever have considered it as such.

Explaining the miracles which the Bible attributes to Jesus Christ, President Schurman said:

"We have to-day our Christian Science and our faith cure, by means of which we see one man exerting great powers over both the minds and bodies of another. Who can say what great influence Jesus Christ might have had in conformity even with the laws of nature over the minds and bodies of men.

"Altho we have broken away from the garb in which the teachings of Christ were first clothed, the principles he taught are still needed to save our race from despair, materialism and scepticism, and our young men from low standards. I know from experience that most of you who come to the university from homes where you have been taught to believe in the Bible begin to doubt its teachings when you begin to learn from science that what it states as historical facts cannot be true. I wish to help you in this stage and show you that behind the statements in the Bible, which we must cast aside, are principles of religion which we must follow to-day."

N.Y. Sun.
INFIDELITY SIMILARLY TAUGHT ABROAD.

Considerable comment and discussion has followed an address delivered by the Dean of Westminster to Sunday-school teachers. The dean declared that "our whole conception of the inspiration of the Bible has been altered." In support of this theory he referred to the first two chapters of Genesis as portions of the Bible which must be taken as parables and allegories. He went on to say that these and many other stories, such as that of the talking serpent and the talking ass, are not now regarded as literal statements of historical facts, but as imagery, clothing certain spiritual lessons. In short, the dean advanced as his view of the Bible the one that is too well known to need further description than is indicated in the above passage. It is his position in the Church that has given rise to public discussion. Many clergymen have expressed surprise, and Canon McCormick protests that this sort of thing upsets the whole foundation of belief, because it attacks the question of inspiration. He says: "We cannot believe one part of the Bible is inspired and another is not, because we believe that the compilers were inspired".

Cablegram to Globe-Democrat.
"ALMA MATER" WILL SUCCEED DOXOLOGY

The "Doxology" has been discarded at the University of Chicago. The faculty has agreed with students that college songs do more to breed a true religious and college spirit than the chanting of the tenets of Christian belief, and to-day at all chapel services in the junior college the college song "Alma Mater" was substituted for the doxology. The gist of the recommendation of the students to the professors was that a college spirit was the aim of the morning chapel service.

Toledo Times.

These items tell the tale of the rapid departure of faith in the Bible as a divine revelation. But still worse is the fact that even the public-school text-books are being remodeled, so as to affect the child-mind at its earliest and most impressive stage of development. What must be the great loss and far-reaching blight that will result? True, much that has been taught as truth is rankly unscriptural and unreasonable; but with all that, there was still an element of truth in every creed, on which some hope and reverence hung ever so tentatively.

We see in this war of Scholastic Infidelity a preparation for the great anarchistic trouble with which the Scriptures predict this age will end in a baptism of fire and blood. Thank God for its assurances of the Golden age to follow speedily.

SPIRITUALISTIC MANIFESTATIONS INCREASING.

Be not deceived said our Master. So far as we are able, we desire that all TOWER readers may be proof against the deceptions of the fallen angels, who, personating the dead, are rapidly deluding the world as they are granted more power in this "evil day," as predicted. It is remarkable that as Higher Criticism's denial of divine inspiration of the Bible finds its advocates in the Christian ministry, so Spiritism is choosing the same channel, so far as it is able, to deceive the whole world.

While the St. Louis Post-Dispatch tells of a "spirit photograph" of General Lee, taken without intention when a group was photographed on a veranda – above their heads – word comes from Chicago of a spirit-painted portrait produced in daylight in the presence of the widely known Rev. Isaac Funk, D.D., and for him; and another paper publishes a bishop's declaration of his faith in such manifestations as from the dead.

Can we not see that the influence of the demons is growing, and does not this betoken a great night of darkness so far as the light of the Bible is concerned? Yes, the forces of evil are being let loose to tempt them that, professing Christ, have received not the Truth in the love of it. – 2 Thes. 2:10.

We quote below the newspaper reports referred to:

TIME COMING WHEN COMMUNICATION WITH THE OTHER WORLD WILL BE EASY, DECLARES BISHOP FALLOWS.

Chicago, Ill. – "As a Christian and a believer in the Bible, I must believe in communication between the two worlds – that in which we live and that to which our friends have gone."

Bishop Samuel Fallows of the Reformed Episcopal Diocese of Chicago, made this statement to-day.

"But," he went on, "I have a profound distrust of the mediums who are pretending to be able to call up spirits at will.

"I believe in apparitions, however, and think it possible that there are persons possessed of a certain mysterious psychic power which enables them to make [R3567 : page 166] of their spirits a channel, as it were, through which the earth-bound spirit can communicate with the friend from the other side.

"We are still in a state of groping. I believe the time will come, with the further development of those psychic powers of which we are just beginning to get an inkling, when communication with the other world will be very easy."

Inquirer.
REV. I. K. FUNK, D.D.'S EXPERIENCES.

AMAZING STORIES OF PICTURES GROWING ON CANVAS BEFORE THE EYES OF WITNESSES REVEALED IN CONNECTION WITH BANGS SISTERS

Chicago, Ill. – Details of a seance at which a $1500 picture was painted by dead masters wielding the brush in the mysterious world of spirits under the mediumship of the Bangs sisters, 654 West Adams street, have come to light.

The amazing story is given on the authority of a spiritualist, who had it first hand from Dr. Isaac Funk of New York, who paid $1500 for the "spirit painting."

Dr. Funk is one of the proprietors of Funk & Wagnalls, one of the largest publishing firms of the United States. He formerly was a Methodist minister. He is editor of the Standard dictionary.

"Funk, when in Chicago last September, visited the Bangs sisters," said this informant. "He has long been interested in spirit phenomena. But only recently he had taken up the investigation of spirit painting. This is a rare manifestation of spirit power. The Bangs sisters are among a very few mediums through whom dead artists paint."

Dr. Funk was ushered into a south room on the second floor at the end of the hall. It was barren of everything save a table and a few chairs. Light was admitted through one window. No one except the two sisters, Dr. Funk and a friend were in the room.

The sisters showed them several white canvases both on stretchers and off and asked Dr. Funk to select any one he desired. He picked out one about 20 x 24, which was already on a stretcher.

Nobody spoke or moved. In about three minutes a cloud seemed to pass over the canvas, leaving a pearl-gray effect for a background.

A few minutes more and a dull outline of a portrait appeared. Every few minutes it grew more distinct. Then followed the various colors, and in 45 minutes the picture, a perfect likeness, was completed.

AT M. E. BIBLE CONFERENCE – LOS ANGELES.

Dr. Biederwolf is reported to have answered the question, "What is the Evangelical Church?" as follows, – very truthfully:

"I don't know what your idea is, but mine is something like the following:

"The Evangelical Church must be pure in doctrine. I mean true to the evangelical creed. The revival of the next fifty years must be a revival of doctrine. The preacher must first take his stand on the inspiration of this Book, and be steadfast, immovable, abounding in the Word of the Lord. Once give yourself up to the unsubstantial supposition that like all other good books it has its errors as well as its truth, its only superiority being that it has a little more of the latter, and you will either wreck your faith on the barren reefs of a shallow liberalism or, like a coward, will use the pulpit of the Lord Christ to minister to your pride and purse. If this book is the Word of God the only important thing for [R3568 : page 166] this world to know is, what it says, and the only call you or I ever had from God is to make clear and emphatic to the world the message it contains. Blessed Book!

"And now for the message. The evangelistic Church must above all be evangelical in its preaching. I wonder if we haven't been placing too little emphasis on the trenchant doctrines of the world in our concern for practical righteousness; science has put such a beautiful dress on man's wickedness that we have almost forgotten there is such a thing as sin.

"Never as to-day has the world been so disposed to doubt and deny the real meaning of the cross. And this finds encouragement in a two-fold tendency of the ministry, the one seeking to please the world with some weak and dilettante palliation, the other ignoring the cross well nigh altogether. Of the first class none are, I presume, here to-day; they are not usually found in such places; but, brethren, what about the other class? We hear about the wide range of the pulpit, but that is not true – its range is very limited indeed – but this is true in a sense only – it should be determined to know nothing save Jesus Christ and him crucified, and when anything crowded in means the cross crowded out both are out of their place and the preacher, too."

[R3568 : page 166]

THOUGHTS REGARDING JONAH.
DEAR BRO. RUSSELL: – Herewith I send you some suggestions which have occurred to me in studying the Book of Jonah, and which, perhaps, may prove interesting to you.

Your brother in Christ, D. KIHLGREN.

The book of Jonah has been especially assailed by the "higher critics," and they have ridiculed the story of Jonah being swallowed by a fish, as a fable. On the other hand the prophecy of Jonah seems to have been, doctrinally at least, largely a mystery to God's people. It has, however, valuable practical lessons which no doubt have been appreciated, namely, God's love to the repentant Ninevites; His kindness in reproving the murmuring prophet, and as showing how God sometimes uses very imperfect instruments in carrying out his designs, etc.

Jonah offers a sharp contrast to the other prophets along several lines, viz.: –

1. His character: disobedient, ignoble.
2. His mission: To a heathen city.
3. His success: Unparalleled.
4. His predictions: Failed.

However, Jonah was nevertheless a prophet of God, whose predictions at another time came true. See 2 Kings 14:25. He was from Gath-Hephes, in Galilee, tho contradicted by the unscrupulous or else ignorant Pharisees when they wished to gain a point of argument. – John 7:52.

Our Lord applied Jonah's experiences in connection with the fish as being typical of himself. – Matt. 12:39,40. [R3568 : page 167]

In "Old Theology" Tract No. 41, Jonah 3:10; 4:11 is referred to, as a testimony from this prophet in regard to "the restitution of all things." In view of these references being given as proof, the inference evidently is that Nineveh in some way foreshadowed the world in the Millennial age. With this view, I have wondered whether Jonah in his disobedience and fleeing from God might have represented Adam, and hence also our Lord Jesus who took the sinner's place.

Jonah's disobedient course led to the sea where he took ship. Christ's sacrificial course (taking the sinner's place) brought him in contact with the Jewish people.

The Revelator tells us that water is a symbol of "peoples, nations and tongues." – Rev. 17:15.

The agitated waters in Jonah's case find a parallel in the lawless mob, which clamored for Christ's death. The air in motion (wind) which agitated the water may represent Satan, "the prince of the power of the air" (Eph. 2:2) which then had freedom to work (Luke 23:53). The ship, being at the mercy of the sea, may represent the Roman government, and the crew might represent Pilate; for as the crew prayed to be considered innocent for casting Jonah overboard, so Pilate washed his hands, declaring his innocence, being forced to deliver Christ to death.

If these premises be true, may they not also be applicable to some extent to all the members of Christ's body, who, like Christ, have been accused of being the real sinners, "turning the world upside down," named heretics all through the Gospel age, and one government after another, like the Roman, has been compelled by God's nominal people to exterminate them, to cast them overboard.

Since Jonah in his experience with the fish typified our Lord's death and resurrection "on the third day," may he not also typify the church, the Lord's body, which is to be raised on the third thousand-year-day? – See Z.W.T. 1901, page 122.

If Jonah, then, when cast ashore by the fish, represents The Christ resurrected, then the application of the reference in tract No. 41 seem to be quite forceful, as Jonah would then represent the great prophet, and Nineveh the world.

Forty days was the length of Nineveh's trial time. The number forty seems to be associated in several instances with a time of trial, for instance, Israel's forty years in the wilderness; Christ's temptation, forty days; the Jewish and Gospel harvests, 40 years each. May it be that Nineveh's forty days of repentance indicate in this way the 1,000 years of the world's trial time?

But did Jonah's predictions really fail?

No, the old, the wicked Nineveh did perish. In its place came repentant Nineveh. So with the world in the Millennial age: The wicked shall be destroyed, but there will be opportunities for all to have the wickedness cleansed out, and thus be spared. (See the double cleansing process – "burning" and "judgment," in Isa. 4:4.)

One thing is sure, and that is that Jonah does not in his murmuring represent The Christ. May be the murmuring experiences are only practical lessons, or, may it be that Jonah in this represents a class that poses as God's mouthpieces, but who do not like this "Millennial nonsense" of having Nineveh spared? If so, would the "gourd" which pleased, and which shielded Jonah, be suggestive of the "Confederacy," the "Image of the Beast," which will grow up very suddenly and shield the gray heads of the D.D.'s for a short while from the scorching rays of the sun of truth?

[R3568 : page 167]

THE MESSAGE OF THE RISEN CHRIST.
REVELATION 1:10-20. – JUNE 11. –

Golden Text: – "I am he that liveth and was dead: and, behold, I am alive for evermore."

T
HE messages of our glorious Lord, sent through the Apostle John and given to us in the symbols of the book of Revelation, are as truly the Savior's messages as those uttered during his earthly ministry and those subsequently sent us through the apostles.

The book of Revelation was written at a time when severe persecution was upon the infant Church – near the close of the first century, probably A.D. 93-96, in the reign of the Emperor Domitian, though some date it nearly thirty years earlier, in the reign of Nero. No matter – in either case it was written at a time of special peril and severe persecution. For a time the Lord allowed the truth to become well planted and to take root; the gifts of miracles and other gifts in the Church at that time assisted in this matter.

For a time, although there were persecutions of individuals such as are recorded in Acts, the believers as a whole were not subjected to the severest of trials at first. It was when the truth began to spread, and had not only the enmity of the Jews but also of the Greeks, that emperors and governors found favor with the masses by persecuting the followers of Jesus. And for aught we know, so it will be in the not-far-distant future. For a long time the pure truth has been hidden from men, and worldliness in the form of godliness has had the upper hand in influential circles; but doubtless, as the troublous times the Scriptures predict for the end of this age draw closer, those who will stand firm for the word of the Lord's testimony may expect to be made the scapegoats under various pretexts. We shall not be surprised to find a considerable measure of persecution against all the children of the light, who will walk up to the light, developed within the next seven years. John, the beloved disciple, in some measure or degree typified or represented the last living members of the little flock. Doubtless this was the meaning of our Lord's statement, "If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee?" John did not tarry, but a class whom he in some respects illustrated are represented to tarry – a class who see with the eyes of their understanding the visions and revelations which John saw in symbols in a trance.

John at the time of the trance vision was a prisoner, exiled to the Isle of Patmos, a penal colony of those days – an island almost uninhabitable, rocky barren. The crime for which he suffered this banishment [R3569 : page 168] was his faithfulness as a mouthpiece of the Lord. At the time he must have been between sixty and ninety years of age, supposing that none of our Lord's disciples were younger than himself at the beginning of his ministry. If his exile in any degree symbolized ostracism, which the Lord's followers may expect in the close of this age – a complete isolation from others and a treatment implying that they are prisoners – we may take comfort in the thought that as the Lord's favor and revelations to John more than offset his persecutions, so the opening of the eyes of our understandings and the granting to us of greater lengths and breadths and heights and depths of knowledge and appreciation of our Lord and his plan will far more than offset the various experiences which in his providence he may permit to come upon us. His assurance is that all things shall work together for good to those who love God, to the called ones according to his purpose. Whoever rests his faith securely upon his promise may indeed with the Apostle Paul count all tribulations as loss and dross for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus our Lord.

ON THE LORD'S DAY

Presumably John referred to the first day of the week, now generally called Sunday. It is peculiarly to us the Lord's day – the day on which our Lord rose from the dead, and on which all the promises of God's Word received life and our hopes through Christ were quickened. We may see in the expression also a reference to the Millennial age, called in the Scriptures frequently, "The day of Christ." We, today, according to our understanding of chronology, are living in the early dawn of this day of Christ, and it is here and now properly that we begin to see the wonderful things of the divine character and plan. But to see these things, to understand these things, we must be in the spirit. Only those who have become new creatures in Christ Jesus can be expected to understand and appreciate spiritual things, and this is the class whom John represented. As John heard a voice behind him and looked in that direction, so we who now are having the realities find that the message is behind us, and turn and look toward the past to see the fulfilment of the various features of the divine plan and to hear and understand the message given to his people by the risen Lord. The voice said, "What thou seest write in a book and send to the seven churches" – naming seven prominent churches in Asia Minor. (The words, "I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last," are not found in the oldest Greek manuscripts and are properly omitted in the Revised Version. These words, however, do occur in the Greek MSS. in verse 8 and again in Revelation 21:6, and a portion of them later on in this lesson.)

There are many reasons for concluding that while the messages were given to the seven churches specified and were applicable to them, they should properly have a still wider application to the whole Church of Christ, the number seven representing completeness and the order representing different epochs in the history of the Church. Thus the Church at Ephesus would represent the condition of the Church in the Apostle's days at the time of the writing of the messages, while the Laodicean Church would represent the Church in our day – in the end of this Gospel age. The other churches would correspondingly represent different epochs intermediate, between the beginning and now. To think otherwise would be to attach more importance to those seven comparatively small churches of Asia Minor than they would seem to have deserved, and would have implied an ignoring of other churches more numerous and more influential than they; as, for instance, the churches at Jerusalem, Antioch, Corinth, Colosse, Philippi, Thessalonica, etc. Furthermore, the details of the messages given to these seven churches apply to and fit historically the one Church of the living God, over every member and branch of which the Lord has a care. This thought, that the seven represented completeness, we find emphasized in the other symbolical representations – in the seven golden candlesticks, the seven stars, etc.

SEVEN GOLDEN CANDLESTICKS

Turning and looking, John saw in symbol as we may now see with the eye of faith and understanding. He saw one like a Son of man [like a man – like a priest, as implied by the clothes described] walking amongst seven golden candlesticks, caring for them, trimming the wicks, seeing to the supply of oil, etc. We see that our Lord Jesus, our glorified Master, although absent from us, has been present with his Church throughout the past eighteen centuries and more, protecting the interests of his cause and directing in respect to all of his people's affairs, especially inspecting and caring for the Church as a light bearer, a candlestick. Alas, how poor the wicks sometimes have been, how feeble the light that has sometimes shone out into the darkness, how much of trimming has been necessary and how much more may yet be necessary!

In the Tabernacle, and subsequently in the Temple of Solomon, the golden candlesticks or lampstands were placed by the Lord's direction – not seven candlesticks, but one with seven branches, representing the whole Church, the complete Church during this Gospel age. In Revelation the same candlestick or lampstand is brought to our attention, but the parts are separated – the union, the relationship between them, being supplied by our Redeemer, the antitypical High Priest. The lampstand symbolized the Lord's nominal people of this Gospel age, including his "members." It holds forth the light of life, the light that shines in the darkness and which he directed should be so let shine before men that they might see our good works and glorify the Father in heaven. Alas! the Master evidently found but few good works, but little glorifying light shining out from his earthly representatives in many of these epochs. This is represented by his messages, chidings, encouragements, etc., given to each of these epoch churches represented by the different candlesticks or lampstands. It is to be noted that the lampstand represents the nominal Church of Christ rather than the true. This is shown by the fact that in the Lord's addressing each of these lampstands or churches he finds fault with the many [R3569 : page 169] and approves the few, especially so in the last, the seventh, the Laodicean Church of our day.

THE APPEARANCE OF CHRIST

We are not to regard the word-picture of verses 13-16 as a portrait of our Lord in glory. It is a symbolical picture merely. He will not look as here described when we see him as he is and behold his glory. This symbolical picture, nevertheless, has precious lessons for us, more useful than an attempt to describe to our minds the appearance of our Lord as a spirit being, "dwelling in light which no man can approach unto," and which we cannot appreciate until we shall be "changed" and be like him and see him as he is.

His head and hair as white as wool and snow tell us of his wisdom, and that he is the "Ancient of Days;" they speak also of splendor and purity. His eyes like a flame of fire tell us in symbol that our Master is all-seeing, omniscient; that he is not deceived by outward forms or ceremonies, but can and does read every thought and intent of the heart. The contemplation of his glance should of itself purge and purify our hearts to the extent of ability, to put far from us everything which would have his disapproval.

Having described the head John mentions the hands and feet. The remainder of the body was covered with a garment which reached from his head to his feet. This may possibly represent the fact that the glory of Christ was manifested in his own person, in his own ministry and in that of his twelve apostles, his representatives, and that with their death the body of Truth was almost completely veiled throughout the eighteen centuries intervening until now, in the end of the age, the feet members will be illuminated by the Truth and shine forth – not like the Head, but as polished brass. When we think of the great advantage every way which we of the present age possess, we are inclined to say, What manner of persons ought we to be in all holiness of living and God-likeness. We who have the focused rays of divine inspiration and revelation from the past 6,000 years shining upon us with almost burning brightness, how it should consume in us all the dross of selfishness, how it should purify us, how humble it should make us, how we should be even in our flesh polished, bright, luminous representatives of the glorious Head and members of the Christ!

"IN HIS RIGHT HAND SEVEN STARS"

The countenance of the majestic one present amongst the candlesticks is represented as being like lightning. This reminds us of Daniel's description of the holy one who communicated the message of God to him upon one occasion; it reminds us of Paul's description of the great light that he saw on his way to Damascus, which represented to his understanding the glorified Lord shining above the brightness of the sun at noonday. So great was the splendor that John fell as dead when he beheld it, just as Daniel fell prostrated and was like a dead man in the presence of the mighty one whom he saw, and just as Saul of Tarsus fell down before the majesty displayed to him. So symbolically with us, when once we get a glimpse of the glories of the divine character through the divine plan, when once we get a true view with the eyes of our understanding of him with whom we have to do, as the great heart-searcher and caretaker of his Church, we fall before him humbled to the dust, realizing that we are imperfect, that we cannot stand before our Master, that we are unworthy of his favor and blessing. But as he touched John gently, raising him up, so he has [R3570 : page 169] spoken to us comfort, peace and love, assuring us that we have not an High-Priest that cannot be touched with a feeling of our infirmities, but, on the contrary, one who is able to sympathize and mercifully to assist, one who has bought us with his own precious blood, who has accepted us and will number us as his body members so long as we abide in him, seeking in our hearts to know and to do his will.

His comforting assurance to us is (1) "Fear not." The same message that the Father sent us through the prophet Isaiah, saying, "Their fear of me is not of me, but is taught by the precepts of men." (Isa. 29:13.) This lesson, "Fear not," is one of the first that we must learn. We cannot come into close sympathy with our Lord and be taught of him respecting other features of his plan until we learn this lesson, "Fear not," until we learn to have confidence in him as the one who loved us and bought us with his precious blood, and whose purposes toward us continually are for our welfare and, if we submit ourselves to his guidance, to bring us off conquerors and more than conquerors. (2) "I am the First and the Last." We must recognize our Lord as the one who was the beginning of the creation of God and the end of it, the one by whom were all things, the one who is next to the Father, his very representative in everything pertaining to the affairs of the universe.

(3) We must recognize him as the one who was dead, the one who really died for our sins, but who as really was raised out of death by the power of the Father. (4) We must realize that he is alive for evermore, that death has no more dominion over him, that the work is finished, that neither sacrifices of the mass nor death in any other sense or form has dominion over him nor ever will have, nor will ever be needed; his work is perfect, and, as he cried on the cross, "It is finished." (5) We must recognize that he has the keys, the authority, the power over the tomb, to deliver from it all who are there imprisoned. We must also realize that he has the "key," the power over death, so that those whom he liberates from the prison-house of death, the tomb, like those who have not yet gone into it but who are under the sentence of death, may all be ultimately delivered, set free from the dominion of sin and death, delivered into the full liberty of the sons of God, righteousness and life eternal.

It is this one whom we thus know, thus recognize as the instructor and caretaker of the candlesticks, the churches; whom we are to recognize also as having in his right hand, in his favor as well as in his power, seven stars – the angels or messengers of the seven churches. These stars apparently represent special ministers [R3570 : page 170] or servants of the Church. In Revelation 12:1 the Church is pictured as a woman crowned with twelve stars. These stars evidently represent the twelve apostles as the special lights of the Church. Similarly, in the picture before us, the seven stars which the Lord holds in his right hand seem to represent special light-bearers in the Church – in each of the seven phases or developments. That they are held in his right hand seems to teach us that these should be considered as in some special sense under the Master's guidance and protection and care in the interest of the churches which they represented.

It will be noticed that the messages to the various churches are all addressed to these stars or messengers or angels of the churches, as though he would have us understand that the appropriate message for each appropriate time or epoch in the Church's experience would be sent by the Lord through a particular star or messenger whom he would particularly commission as his representative. Our Lord himself is represented by the great light of the sun, and his special messengers in the Church throughout the entire period are consistently enough represented as stars. The difference between the figures of the star and the candlestick is manifest: the star light is the heavenly light, the spiritual enlightenment or instruction; the lamp light is the earthly light, representing good works, obedience, etc., of those who nominally constitute the Lord's Church in the world and who are exhorted not to put their light under a bushel, but on a candlestick, and to let their light so shine as to glorify their Father in heaven.

A SHARP, TWO-EDGED SWORD

No part of the description could more thoroughly convince us that the description of our Lord here given is a symbolical one than does this statement that out of his mouth proceeded a two-edged sword. As a symbolic picture, however, it is full of meaning to us. It speaks of the word of the Lord as the sword of the Spirit, "sharper than any two-edged sword." It reminds us that our Lord's words are not one-sided, not merely directed against sin in one class, that his word is sharp and cutting in every direction, that sin is reproved by him as much when found in his most earnest followers as when found elsewhere. It assures us that none need attempt to pluck out the mote from his brother's eye without getting rid of the beam in his own eye. It assures us that if we do not show mercy to those who are our debtors we must not expect mercy from him who has proposed to extend his mercy to us.

How heart-searching is the Word of God when we get to understand it – not merely as a compendium of rules and regulations, but when we come to catch the spirit of it, when we come to see that its requirement is love out of a pure heart, first to the Father, secondly to our Lord and Head, thirdly to all his brethren, fourthly to the world in general, groaning and travailing in pain, waiting for the glorious blessings of the coming day, and fifthly, sympathetically toward our enemies also, realizing that they are warped and twisted and blinded through the deceitfulness of sin and through the machinations of the great Adversary.

[R3570 : page 170]

THE HEAVENLY JERUSALEM.
REVELATION 22:1-11. – JUNE 18. –

Golden Text: – "To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne." – Rev. 3:21.

T
HOSE who claim that God's Kingdom was set up in power at Pentecost, and that it since has been conquering the world, and that it will proceed until God's will is done on earth as in heaven, and that then Christ's second advent will take place and he will say, Well done, I could not have done better myself, and that then he will proceed to take all the faithful to heaven and to burn up the world; – these dear friends have a specially hard task before them when they touch upon the book of Revelation, as the present International Sunday lesson does. They must admit that the first three chapters, containing the messages to the churches, imply nothing of the kind. Referring to seven different epochs in the Church's history, they suggest nothing to the effect that the Church is now reigning, but, quite to the contrary, that it will be a suffering Church down to the very last. It promises a coming reign to those who faithfully endure the trials of the present time preceding the reign. Each one of the messages closes with an exhortation, To him that overcometh, I will grant, etc.

All the intervening chapters between the third and the twentieth deal with conflicts between good and evil, and evidently cover the entire period of this Gospel age; yet in all of these presentations the evil is shown to be triumphant, and the people of the saints of the Most High God are worn out and cry from under the altar, etc. Not much a reign of righteousness that, surely! and how thinking people close their minds to all this is passing strange.

It is at the conclusion of this book of symbols, from the eighteenth to the twenty-second chapters, that the close of this Gospel age and the inauguration of the Millennial age is pictured, and the triumph of the Lord and of his saints is shown. The introduction of that reign of righteousness, Christ's Millennial Kingdom, is shown, marked by wonderful events connected with our Lord's second advent, the glorification of his Church, the binding of Satan, the rising of the Sun of Righteousness, the blessing of the world, the scattering of its darkness, ignorance, etc. One would think that, even with no knowledge of the symbols of Revelation, no thinking Christian should have any difficulty in realizing that the book portrays trouble for the Church throughout this Gospel age and the triumphant Millennial reign at its close.

Our lesson pertains to the New Jerusalem, which in the preceding context is described as "coming down [R3570 : page 171] from heaven as a Bride prepared for her Husband" – beautiful, pure, gorgeous, resplendent. The City represents the Church in glory, this being indicated by the declaration that it was like unto a bride prepared for her husband, and the further demonstration is in the fact that the angel who called to John, saying, "Come, I will show you the Bride, the Lamb's wife," showed him the New Jerusalem descending, etc. – Rev. 21:9,10.

The words of the Apostle comparing the earthly Jerusalem with the heavenly corroborate the angel's testimony. The entire Gospel age has been the time for the preparation of this New Jerusalem. In one figure we are the city, in another we are the people of the city. The walls are living stones, such as the Apostle Peter describes; the foundation stones are the twelve apostles of the Lamb. The city as a whole comprises all the saints, from our Lord, the Head, down to and including the last member of the Church, which is his body. Not until all these have been chosen and found [R3571 : page 171] faithful and fitted and prepared for their places, will this city descend to earth in power and come into the possession or control of the earth. The coming of that city to the earth is the symbolical representation of the establishment of God's Kingdom in the earth, for a city is a symbol representing government, control. Thus Washington City represents the United States government, St. Petersburg the Russian government, Paris the French government, Rome the Italian, Berlin the German, London the British, etc.

"THE RIVER OF THE WATER OF LIFE"

The throne of God and of the Lamb is represented as being in this city. That is to say, the Kingdom, the government that will then be established in the world, will have as its center of authority the divine law and the divine power – every feature of the government will be in accord with the divine will. From the throne of God will proceed the river of the water of life, of crystalline purity, not muddy traditions with false doctrines. No impurity of any kind will be in it: it will be the pure message of the Lord, going forth from the Millennial Kingdom for the blessing, refreshment, rejuvenation and eternal life of the whole world of mankind or so many of them as will accept the blessed provisions. Not only will the message of peace and the offer of life thus go forth from the throne to the whole world, but, additionally, there will be trees of life on both sides of the river, bearing twelve manner of fruits and yielding their fruits every month, and the leaves of these shall be for the healing of the nations.

The symbolic picture suggests nourishment and healing for the sin-sick, starving world, which then may partake freely of all the blessings and privileges thus symbolized. No longer will it be necessary to say to men, "The weaknesses of your fallen flesh will be with you until death, for although the Lord has graciously covered your sins because of faith in the Redeemer and the desire to walk in his way, nevertheless there is no escape from the consequences of sin, there is nothing that will absolutely heal." When the new dispensation, represented by this symbolical city and its river of the water of life and the trees of life with their leaves of healing, is made available to men, it will be the beginning of the times of restitution spoken by the Lord through the mouth of all the holy prophets since the world began. (Acts 3:19-21.) The restitution will affect all the willing and obedient, not only physically but mentally and morally: the uplift will be individual and world-wide. This is the very object of providing the river of life, the trees of life, their fruits and their leaves.

"WHOSOEVER WILL MAY COME"

The call of this Gospel age is a limited one, "He that hath an ear, let him hear," and let him come, and, coming, be one of the elect. But the majority of our race cannot hear the message in the present time, hence cannot come, hence cannot be of the elect. The Scriptures clearly indicate a reserve in the matter of the Lord's grace at the present time, our Lord's word on the subject being, "No man can come unto me except the Father which sent me draw him." Again, "If I be lifted up I will draw all men unto me." This Gospel age is the period in which the Father is drawing the Church to be the Bride of Christ, but as soon as the marriage of the Lamb shall have taken place, as soon as the New Jerusalem, the Church in glory, shall have been established in the earth, the drawing of all the families of the earth will ensue. They will not be drawn, however, to the same things to which we have been drawn; they will not be drawn to the heavenly things, to the joint-heirship with Christ in his Kingdom; they will not be invited to become members of his Bride, for that Bride class, that Kingdom class, will then be completely beyond the possibility of any further additions.

This river of the water of life represents the blessed influence that will proceed to humanity from the glorified Christ, Head and body – from the Kingdom of God's dear Son. When the blessed opportunities of that time are thoroughly open to the world, when the Sun of Righteousness shall have scattered all the darkness of ignorance and sin, when Satan shall have been bound, when the river of the water of life shall flow freely, then the invitation that will go forth will no longer be a call of the elect, but an invitation to every creature, every member of the human race, to partake of the blessings and privileges which God has provided in Christ, that they may have the everlasting life and everlasting joy which is to be the portion of those who love righteousness and hate iniquity, and who avail themselves of the gracious provision in Christ.

The statement respecting that glorious time and message is, "And the Spirit and the Bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst, Come. And whosoever will, let him take of the water of life freely." – Verse 17.

There will be a Bride then, but there is no Bride now. The Church is espoused, but the marriage of the Lamb is still deferred, not yet accomplished. The last members of his Church must complete their course, must pass their examination and enter into glory with him before the marriage be consummated. But after the marriage there will be not only the holy city, representing [R3571 : page 172] the Church in her official or governing capacity under Christ her Head, but there will be also the blessed work of the Church, the calling of the world's attention to the river of the water of life, to the leaves of healing, to the fruits of the Spirit; and the Spirit, the power of God, will co-operate with the message that will then be promulgated, and the result undoubtedly will be that all the world shall hear, and that all who love righteousness and hate iniquity will return again to life eternal. It will require all the Millennial age for the delivery of this message to every creature and for them to avail themselves of the privileges.

It will be remembered that the Scriptures nowhere speak of the river of the water of life now. There is none, and can be none until the heavenly city descends, because the river must flow from the midst of it, from the throne. Describing the condition of the Lord's saints at the present time very differently, the Lord declares that those who are his have in them a well of water springing up into life eternal. We know what this is, we know in what sense each individual of the Church has received of his Spirit, has in him a fountain of grace and truth for his refreshment; but there is no river of the water of life to which he could go or to which he could invite others to go.

"THE HEALING OF THE NATIONS"

It should not be overlooked that the healing and refreshment mentioned in this symbolization does not pertain to the "little flock," the Church, but to the world, the nations. The little flock will have been glorified, perfected in the first resurrection, before this offer of healing and restitution of the world is made. Undoubtedly Israel will be the first of the nations to be blessed, but subsequently all the families of the earth, as God's oath-bound covenant has promised.

The glorious blessings and favors of that Millennial period, set apart by the Lord and declared by the mouth of all the holy prophets to be times of restitution of all things spoken of, is summed up most completely in the declaration, "There shall be no more curse." In what more comprehensive language could the Lord declare the end of the reign of sin and death and the commencement of the reign of righteousness unto life eternal. There is a curse upon the world now, official, legal. It has been against us as a race for six thousand years. It is a curse or sentence of death. Although our dear Redeemer has died, the Just for the unjust, although he was made a curse for us, nevertheless up to the present time release from the curse has come to only a small proportion of the race. In the Father's plan the only ones released from the curse, the only ones who have yet escaped the condemnation which is still on the world, is the class which has accepted Christ and is trusting in him.

These are not justified outwardly, actually, but are justified in God's sight, justified by faith. The world realizes not their justification and can appreciate it only by the exercise of faith. By faith they may realize that their sins were laid on Jesus and that his righteousness is imputed to them. Those who can thus exercise the necessary faith have had the opportunity during this Gospel age of consecrating their justified lives, to have fellowship with Jesus in the sufferings of this present time, to have fellowship in his death, to be dead with him. The promise to these is that if faithful in this matter they shall live and be with their Lord, partakers of his glory and sharers in his future work on behalf of the world.

With the end of this age, when the last members of the body shall have finished their course and be glorified with him, he as the great High Priest and they as the under priests, his members, will be prepared to bless the world. Then will be presented to the Father on behalf of the world the merit which came from our dear Redeemer's death on behalf of all, shared by those who rejoiced to suffer with him and who are accepted. Then divine justice will declare the lifting of the curse from all the world of mankind, and then the work of graciously blessing and uplifting and helping them out of their sinful conditions into life everlasting will be possible and will begin. There shall be no more "curse" against humanity, but, on the contrary, they may have fellowship with the Lord, and the throne of his grace and the evidences of his favor will be theirs, and all who desire shall have the opportunity to serve him. All the night of darkness, ignorance, superstition and sin will be past; no longer will the world be dependent for light upon the imperfect shining of such little candles as the Lord's people now are. [R3572 : page 172]

All who come into accord with the Lord shall see his face – that is, there will be no earth-born cloud between, no hindrances to the Father's love and favor, and his name shall be in their foreheads. They will confess him, they will have his likeness, the various elements which go to make up his glorious name and character will be theirs and will be manifest in their faces. If, even now, under present imperfect conditions, the light of grace and truth in the heart transforms the outward features and makes them more and more bright and glorious, much more, we are sure, will this be true of those who at that time shall come under the influence of the light of divine favor and have their hearts filled with the Lord's spirit and truth.

"THEY SHALL REIGN"

The developments of that Millennial age will bring the willing and obedient of the human family back to the original perfection, the image and likeness of God, and once more they will have direct communication with the Lord and not merely his written messages through apostles and prophets as now. "And they shall reign forever and ever." This does not refer to the Church, whose reign has been previously described. The reference is to the reign of those whom the Millennial age shall find worthy of life eternal – all the unworthy being then cut off in the second death. The account here is in full accord with that of Matthew 25:34 – the sheep of that age will at its close be received into the fullest fellowship with the Lord, the goats of that period being destroyed.

The nature of the reign then to be delivered to the [R3572 : page 173] world we have already considered on other occasions, and shown that it will be the same reign or kingdom which at his creation was bestowed upon father Adam, as it is written in Psalm 8:6, "Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands. Thou hast put all things under his feet: all sheep and oxen with the beasts of the field and fowl of the air and fish of the sea." This dominion of earth was part of what father Adam lost by his disobedience, and was a part, therefore, of what our Lord Jesus purchased by his obedience even unto death, and is to be an element of the restitution to be accomplished during the Millennial reign of Christ.

At the close of that reign the Kingdom shall be delivered up to God, even the Father, by being delivered over to those for whom the Father originally intended it, and who by that time will have been fully prepared to receive it. The whole world of perfect men will be a world of kings, though doubtless one of their number will serve particularly as general or representative, just as in the Republic every individual is a sovereign and from their own number they choose a sovereign, a servant.

"SAYINGS FAITHFUL AND TRUE."

Having pictured the work of restitution down to its consummation in the delivery of the kingdom to man, in harmony with the Father's intention, the address of the revelation changes. We are assured that these wonderful promises are faithful and true, that the Lord God of the holy prophets sent his angel to show unto his servants the things which must shortly come to pass. Then the Master speaks to all of his Church who have ears to hear, saying, "Behold, I come quickly: Blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book." The intimation seems to be that the book being symbolical, none can understand it except as its seals are loosed, as its message opens before the Lord's people; and that when its sayings, its teachings come to be appreciated, it may be recognized by those who do understand it as an evidence that the Lord's second advent and the establishment of his Kingdom are close at hand.

This thought is further borne out by the statement of verse 8. As we have already seen, John the revelator represented those favored members of the Church who, living in this end of the Gospel age, are granted the privilege of seeing and appreciating more and more the things which he saw in symbol. The revelation being complete, John fell down before the angel who had given him the revelation to offer him worship. This may signify that in the end of this Gospel age as the whole Church, the John class, comes to see the unfolding of the divine plan, there might be a spirit or disposition amongst them to do too much honor to the one used of the Lord in communicating to them the divine light now due.

The proprieties of the case are set forth to us in the conduct of the symbolical angel who talked to John and who represented some in the end of this age commissioned to present God's truths to his people. He said, "See thou do it not" – do not worship me, for I am not the author of this plan. I am thy fellow servant, a brother to all the prophets and all those who keep the message of this revelation. God alone should be worshiped: he is the Author of the great plan and will be the finisher of it. It is brought to our attention now by him because it is now "due time" for his people to come to an appreciation of his plans.

"RIGHTEOUS OR FILTHY STILL."

The same thought continues: At the time that the features of this symbolical revelation shall come to be understood and appreciated by the Lord's people, they may know that the time of the completion is near at hand. They are not to feel it necessary to hide the matter. "Seal not the sayings of this book, for the time is at hand." Furthermore, we are not to expect that the telling of this message, the explaining of the divine plan, will have the effect of converting the world. It was not intended to do this and will not do it. Notwithstanding the unfolding of the divine plan, this knowledge will only be for a special class for whom it was intended, namely, the Lord's people – "None of the wicked shall understand, but the wise shall understand." So far as the revelations of the divine plan are concerned they are not intended to turn the filthy to make them righteous, nor will they be inclined contrarywise to turn the righteous to sin. So far as these revelations are concerned they who are righteous may be righteous still, they who are filthy may be filthy still, they who are holy may be holy still.

How true it is that Present Truth, although in many respects full of comfort and encouragement to the Church in respect to their dear friends who are out of Christ, has no effect whatever upon those who love sin, who are filthy, who are unrighteous. It appeals only to those who are already righteously inclined. This does not mean that it appeals only to those who are saints, who are holy. There are some who are not saints because they have never properly grasped the conditions of the divine call of the present time, but who are, nevertheless, righteous persons, persons who desire to live uprightly, honorably, honestly, who are sincere and truthful in their own hearts and in their dealings with others so far as their knowledge permits. To these lovers of righteousness, of truth, as well as to the holy, the revelations of the divine plan now unfolding commend themselves, and intensify their love for righteousness and appreciation of full consecration to the Lord.

On the other hand the unrighteous and the filthy simply ignore this message and are not moved specially by it. During the Millennial Kingdom time, however, we may expect that the vigorous processes of the kingdom will correct many of these filthy and unrighteous, and ultimately develop many of them into lovers of the Light and the Truth and the Way, bringing many of them into full fellowship with the Lord, which will secure to them life everlasting.

[R3572 : page 174]

BIBLE STUDIES FOR JUNE.
B
ELOW we announce the prepared lessons for June. Word reaches us that the dear friends who have adopted these studies are growing more and more interested in them. They open up so thorough a study of the topics and give all opportunity to participate that they supply more "meat," more spiritual nourishment, than can generally be obtained in the same time.

We recommend these studies for one of the meetings you usually have or for a new meeting if those now held are all too good to be displaced. Something of this kind is surely needed to refresh the mind along lines already partly understood.

The topic is quite sufficient for one session each on the four Sundays of June – say four questions or so each. If possible have each one who can and will read distinctly take a part. For instance, five could share in the first question, three in the second, three in the third, three in the fourth, thirteen in all. If there are fewer than thirteen willing to take part, give more than one reference to the more competent. In no case should an indifferent reader be given a lengthy selection or reference. The success of the study depends greatly on the wisdom of the leader, who should apportion the references the Sunday previous to the meeting, and assist the friends every way as a true "under shepherd," seeing that ample opportunities are afforded for the reverential investigation of each topic. The leader should briefly sum up the findings of the class on each question before proceeding to the next, and in conclusion should summarize briefly all the questions and the Scriptural answers found. These are the Sunday evening lessons of the Allegheny Church at the Bible House Chapel.

*                         *                         *
TEMPERANCE – SELF-CONTROL.

1. What is the importance of self-control? Prov. 25:28; 16:32; E.125, par.1; Z.'01-295 (2d col. par. 2,3); Z.'01-326 (1st and 2d cols.) [R3573 : page 174]

2. Is self-control necessary in the interest of others? 1 Cor. 8:13; Z.'03-43 (1st col. par. 2) to 45; Z.'97-234 (2d col. par. 1.)

3. Are we to be "temperate in all things"? 1 Cor. 9:25; Z.'97-147, (2d col. par. 2); Z.'97-76 (2d col. par. 1 to 4.)

4. Does self-control imply purification of the thoughts and intents of the heart? 1 Jno. 3:3; Z.'99-216 (1st col. par. 1); Z.'01-324 (1st col. par. 1,2.)

5. Does temperance or self-control apply to our language? Jas. 1:19,26; Col. 4:6; Eccl. 5:2; Z.'98-250 (1st col. par. 3); Z.'99-75 (2d col. par. 1.)

6. Does self-control extend to business affairs? 1 Tim. 6:10; Z.'98-250 (2d. col. par. 1.)

7. Why is temperance necessary in our eating and drinking? 1 Cor. 10:31; Z.'98-250 (2d col. par. 2.)

8. Should we be temperate in our joys as well as in our sorrows? Z.'98-251 (1st col. par. 1,2); Z.'05-94 (1st col. par. 2.)

9. Is it possible to be intemperate in studying the Scriptures and in attending religious meetings? F.319, par. 1; F.503, par. 1.

10. What is the relation of the "new will" toward the control of the flesh? 1 Cor. 9:27; F600:1; F488:2; Z.'01-296 (1st col. par. 1,2.)

11. What is the duty of the Church toward those "new creatures" who are lacking in self-control? F.148, par. 2; F.149, par. 1; F.150, par. 1; F.289-292.

12. Why is self-control an essential qualification in an Elder? Titus 1:7,8; F.251, par. 2; Z.'97-156 (2d col. par. 2); F.249, par. 2; Z.'99-75 (2d col. par. 2); Z.'00-195 (1st col. par. 3.)

13. Why is it important that parents exercise self-control? Col. 3:21; F.526, par. 1; F.527, par. 1; F.528, par. 1,2; F.530, par. 1,2.

14. How can suggestion be applied in teaching children self-control? F.551 (par. 1) to 554.

15. How can we cultivate self-control? Z.'03-421 (1st col. par. 1,2); Z.'98-251 (1st col. par. 4.)

(a) By prayer, F149, par. 1,2
(b) By study of the Word, Z.'02-308 (1st col. par. 1,6; 2d col. par. 1.)
(c) By being filled more and more with the Holy Spirit, Z.'02-264 (2d col. par. 4,5); E.275, par. 1; E.283, par. 1,2.
(d) By fasting, Z.'98-45 (1st col. par. 2.)

16. What other most important grace will naturally be developed by attaining a large measure of self-control? Z.'98-251 (1st col. par. 3); Z.'96-222 (1st col. par. 1.)

[R3573 : page 174]

ENCOURAGING WORDS FROM FAITHFUL WORKERS.
page 174

DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL: –

I am seven months old in the Truth. I was one of those baptised at the Boston Convention. This blessed Truth was brought to me by one of your Colporteurs. For four years or more I had been hungering and thirsting for the true Gospel of Christ. I had been to several churches of different denominations, seeking to satisfy this soul hunger, but failed to get what I craved for, so at last I gave up going to any church, and went to God and told him I loved him and wanted to serve him, and him alone, and if he would make known to me the true way to serve him I would sacrifice my whole life in service unto him, even unto death; and there I left myself in his hands. In three months Sr. Boodry came to me with the DAWNS. When I first saw Sr. Boodry she was coming out of my neighbor's gate, and the thought came to me, if she comes to my door I will invite her in, for she may have something I want.

This was something very unusual for me, as I am generally opposed to canvassers of any description, and if I saw them first, I would lock the door and not answer them; but in this case I could hardly wait till she got in my house, I had such a strong desire to know what she had. When she came in and sat down she had not spoken a half dozen words before I knew my prayer was answered, and I recognized my dear Master's voice speaking to me through her. From that moment to this, I have never had any doubt as regards this blessed Truth, and every time I take up those blessed DAWNS tears of rejoicing and thankfulness fill my eyes for God's wonderful favor to me at the present time and for the future blessings that are coming to all mankind in due time. O, praised be God's name ever more through his dear son, amen.

I am going to do some volunteer work, taking my little boy with me to help me distribute the tracts, and he is delighted to do it.

I remain ever, your Sister in Christ,

MARGARET KELLY, – R.I.

[R3573 : page 174]

DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL: –

We have thought for a long time that we ought to express our gratitude to you for your service rendered to the household of faith in giving out the "meat in due season." It is a little over four years now since the light of Present Truth reached us, and well do we remember when we first received some of your literature, and through it learned of our Heavenly Father's plan. How our hearts went out to Him and you as His servant, and we are still very grateful.

We are still rejoicing and how we long to tell the good news, but with our farming work we felt that there was not very much that we could do. But through your encouragement and the much advice and encouragement that we received [R3573 : page 175] from our dear Brother Owen, wife and I entered the colporteur work, feeling that if we could sell four or five books each day, we would be satisfied.

Since that time, we have, by the help of our Heavenly Father, succeeded in selling over fourteen thousand DAWNS, and we are still rejoicing and have an increasing desire to spread the good news. We are settled here with Sister Roberts for the winter, as my health will not permit me to do much at the work in extreme weather. However, we will do some work here as opportunity offers.

Pray for us that we may continue in this way until our Heavenly Father says, "It is enough, come up higher." With Christian love to yourself and all the Bible House friends, from us both.

Yours in the one good hope,

W. H. DICKERSON AND WIFE, – Ind.

DEAR BRETHREN: – Believing it might be of interest to you, I will relate how the Truth as presented in Millennial Dawn affected a very rank outspoken Infidel, an old French doctor, 85 years old, an admirer of R. G. Ingersoll, of whom I was warned repeatedly that he was "poison" to all preachers and religious workers.

Unheeding the warnings, I called upon him. After, as a colporteur, stating my business, which seemed to nettle him, he asked if the DAWN taught that the Bible was the inspired word of God. I told him that it did. He at once told me that he wanted nothing further to do with us, and he had enough of Christianity, and that its whole foundation was a fraud and a fake from beginning to end.

I asked leave to intrude further upon his time that he might point out to me wherein the Bible was a fake, and for what purpose.

After a weak attempt to entangle the Bible account of Creation, the Levitical Priesthood, etc., he left the Bible and attacked modern theology, and the "so-called Christian governments" as he expressed it.

After being informed that our mission was not to bolster up any creed or theory as held by the several Churches, but that it was rather to show and prove the harmony of the Bible with itself, as in contrast with all man-made theologies, which are casting so much reproach upon the Bible, he began to give ear attentively, and finally ordered the first volume of DAWN.

I have called upon him several times since, and really, words cannot justly describe the wonderful change in the spirit and disposition of this man – once haughty and sarcastic, he is now friendly and docile. He has become so interested in "The Plan of the Ages," that he has solicited orders among other free thinkers, and had me leave an extra DAWN in his office for him to sell for me.

Just how he will use this knowledge of the Truth is left for time to tell. For my part I am thankful for the privilege of scattering a few, at least, of the precious seeds of Truth, even though some fall upon stony soil.

With much Christian love, your brother in Hope,

THOS. COX, – Missouri.

DEAR BROTHER: –

It will interest and gratify you to hear that I have had a reading of the six volumes of MILLENNIAL DAWN, which I got from a brother who acts as Colporteur in this locality, disseminating these works and other tracts and booklets from the branch Australian depot in Melbourne.

I had my early teaching in the U. Presbyterian school, but for long years I have severed myself from that teaching, and for some time I have been associated with believers in "Life in Christ only," known as Conditional Immortality. Much of what truth you give we have long found and accepted, but I must confess that until I have been led to carefully read your works many of the vast problems in Scripture remained mysteries. I testify that your modest offer of a "helping hand" has been more than affording some light, a ray of light, but has come as an opened door, revealing a flood of light. Thank God for this. To him be all the praise. I am now re-reading these works, and shall apply all my intellect and intelligence to grasp this teaching. I have circulated quite a number of the DAWNS and created much interest in my circle of friends. I am in my 62nd year and feel situated like one called at the eleventh hour.

Yours in the faith,
JOSEPH HEATLEY, – New Zealand.

page 175

DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL: –

The Colporteur service is indeed richly blest to me, in accord with your kind prayer in letter of Feb. 23 and the Lord's presence does lend much of bliss in the narrow way. Through pain and disease I have had to smile with inward joy (as who can help doing, no matter how we feel, if the Lord smiles on us?) and sing in heart those comforting old hymns, "How Firm a Foundation," "Close to Thee," "He Justly Claims a Song from Me," "Nearer, My God to Thee," and also "Trusting in Jesus" and "I've a Message from the Lord."

I half wondered last Thursday night whether I should live till morning, having taken fresh cold Wednesday afternoon and being in the greatest physical discomfort. But I was never more blissfully happy in my life, in the thought of the Lord's glorious presence and favor. How absurdly impossible that would seem to anyone outside the Church! And next morning your kind letter was received and the pain felt better and has been better since.

But I realize that the earthly life must necessarily fade; yet there must be for me a narrow way of assured faith even in the matter of health – a path between indolence and reckless overwork and exposure. Am tempted sometimes to great disappointment that I could do so little for the Lord in his harvest this past winter (I am so thankful that it is past), yet I surely believe that his blessing rests upon the desire and endeavor to serve faithfully just as richly as though I had succeeded in my own eyes. He may not want this city canvassed in such a hurry as I would have enjoyed. His will not mine, be done. I praise his name.

I had a dozen very pleasant little visits yesterday morning with DAWN purchasers in delivering my books. There are lovely people here. At one place, where they found they already had the book but had not read it, I left one of your printed sermons and secured a promise to read the "Plan" and permission to call after a few months to see if they would like the second volume. Another place the lady said she was a converted Catholic, had taken "Father O'Connor's" paper, and felt she would very much like the DAWN.

I think I will undertake to canvass only on warm, pleasant mornings for a while.

Your sister in the faith,
ALICE L. DARLINGTON, – Conn.

[R3573 : page 175]

HOW THE TRUTH REACHED BRIG.-GENERAL HALL.

DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL: –

While attending the St. Louis Fair about the middle of last September, I went through a car in the Transportation Building, and there picked up two tracts, "Sequel to Eaton-Russell Debates" and "Criticisms of Millennial Hopes and Prospects Examined." I read them after a time, and became so much interested in their contents that I procured the first volume of MILLENNIAL DAWN and found it interesting beyond anything I ever read. I thank God that I have found it and after a careful study of the same, and reading the other volumes, know that I have a correct understanding of many parts of the Scriptures I never had before. I also thank the kindly hand that placed those tracts in that car, and hope that some of them appealed to many others as they have to me.

Previous to that time I had never heard of MILLENNIAL DAWN. Now I'm trying with God's help to follow the path made so plain and clear therein. The fact that this wonderful work of yours appealed so strongly to me at once is a great encouragement to me to do the best I can.

Faithfully yours in Christ,

W. P. HALL, U.S.A.

page 177
June 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. XXVI.JUNE 15, 1905.No. 12
CONTENTS.
Remarkable Chronological Parallels – A Letter from Dr. J. Edgar 179
Three Charts of History 181
The Two Ministrations 186
"The Christ, the Son of God" 186
Messianic Hopes Inspiring 187
Life Through Believing 188
Boasters Defeated, Prayers Helped 189
Spiritual Blessings for Spiritual Israel 189
Opposition Awakens Faith 190
A Newspaper View of the Welsh Revival 191
Public Ministries of the Truth 192
Niagara Falls Convention...................... 178,192
The New Volunteer Tracts 178

'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 178

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.

LETTERS FOR THE EDITOR SHOULD BE SENT TO ALLEGHENY, PA., U.S.A.
BUSINESS COMMUNICATIONS AND REMITTANCES
– ADDRESS TO –
WATCH TOWER BIBLE & TRACT SOCIETY,
"BIBLE HOUSE," 610, 612, 614 ARCH ST., ALLEGHENY, PA., U.S.A.
– OR TO –
BRITISH BRANCH – 24 EVERSHOLT ST., LONDON, N.W.
GERMAN BRANCH – MIRKER STR., 45, ELBERFELD.
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PRICE, $1.00 (4S.) A YEAR IN ADVANCE, 5c (2-½d.) A COPY.
MONEY MAY BE SENT BY EXPRESS, BANK DRAFT, POSTAL ORDER, OR REGISTERED.
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.

THIS JOURNAL IS PUBLISHED IN THE
FRENCH, GERMAN, SWEDISH, DANISH AND ITALIAN LANGUAGES.
SAMPLE COPIES FREE.

GENERAL CONVENTION, NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y., JULY 8-11

The RAILROADS of the New England, Trunk Lines, Central, Western and South-Western Associations will sell tickets to this Convention at ONE FARE AND ONE-THIRD, plus 25 cents, on the "Certificate Plan." You purchase a regular single-fare ticket to Niagara Falls, N.Y., telling your ticket-agent at the time that you desire a Certificate, that you are going to the WATCH TOWER BIBLE & TRACT SOCIETY'S CONVENTION, and which will entitle you to purchase a return ticket at ONE-THIRD a regular fare. Hold on to that certificate, as without it you would be charged full fare when buying your return ticket. The Certificates will need to be signed, but we will publicly announce at the Convention the name of the brother who will attend to the matter for you and save you all trouble.

ACCOMMODATIONS should be secured in advance to avoid confusion and trouble to yourself and the Entertainment Committee. Therefore, if you will attend, write at once, saying BRIEFLY (a) how many will be of your party; (b) how many of each sex; (c) if colored, so state; (d) married couples desirous of rooming together should so state. AS TO RATES. – Arrangements can be made for accommodations in boarding houses at $1 to $1.25 per day and at hotels at $1.50 per day up. These rates include meals.

Do not write on this subject AT LENGTH. Tell us about things at the Convention. Give the information briefly and to the point. A postal card will do. Address the WATCH TOWER BIBLE & TRACT SOCIETY, 612 Arch St., Allegheny, Pa.

OTHER EXCURSIONS

From many points there are other Special Excursions run every summer to Niagara Falls. Some of these are at extremely low rates. It will be well for each to inquire of the railway ticket agents of his own city on this subject, and to select the excursion that will suit his convenience best. But take our own Excursion mentioned above unless you can do BETTER.

GET READY PROPERLY

Prepare your heart for a blessing. Come to the Convention in the proper spirit – as a disciple, a learner. Come intent also on doing good as well as getting good, of consoling and encouraging others, as well as to be yourself comforted. Above all, come realizing that the Lord himself is the fountain of blessings, and remembering his word – not by might, nor by power, but by the Lord's Spirit are we to expect the blessings we hope for. In making ready and en route do not forget this important item, for on it your share in the Convention's blessing greatly depends. [R3581 : page 178]

THE VOLUNTEER TRACTS

The Volunteer orders are being filled rapidly now. Those who have examined the "ammunition" generally agree that it is interesting. It consists of four separate sheets folded together. These need not be separated. One or more of the four topics discussed is pretty sure to find interested readers in every home.

We again commend the house to house distribution, so effective last year. In districts where foreigners predominate or where Catholics are numerous it is always best to take up our earlier method of distribution near to English-speaking Protestant churches.

This is a work in which almost all can engage every fine Sunday. The tracts are supplied free as samples of our literature. The great Chief Reaper's words still hold good: "He that reapeth receiveth wages and gathereth fruit unto life everlasting."

[R3574 : page 179]

REMARKABLE CHRONOLOGICAL PARALLELS.
BY J. EDGAR, M.D., AN EMINENT SURGEON, OF SCOTLAND
D
EAR BRO. RUSSELL: – The Lord has enabled me to see another remarkable confirmation of the Parallel Dispensations, teaching that 1914 A.D. is the date when Christendom will lose its crown, will be finally overthrown, and when he, "whose right it is," will take his power and reign.

We recognize that the kingdom of fleshly Israel typified Christendom in many respects. Two prominent events, the division of the kingdom into Judah and Israel and its final overthrow as a kingdom, were undoubtedly types, the former of the division of Christendom at the time of the Reformation, the latter of its final overthrow. The remarkable feature which has now come to light is that we have in this a time-parallel.

Under Saul, David and Solomon, the typical kingdom was undivided for the space of 120 years. DAWN II., page 50, shows that the whole period of the kings, including these three, was 513 years. The length of time, therefore, from the division of the typical kingdom on the death of Solomon till the removal of the crown from Zedekiah was 513 minus 120, equal to 393 years. The date of the division of Christendom into Papacy and Protestantism was 1521 A.D. Therefore, 393 years later, i.e., in 1914 A.D., we should expect the final overthrow of "Christendom."

The evidence that 1521 A.D. is the date when the split into Papacy and Protestantism occurred is clear. In June, 1520, Luther received from Pope Leo X. the first bull of excommunication, commanding him to confess his faults within sixty days, or be cast out of the Church. On 10th December, 1520 (the third month of the year 1521 by the Jewish mode of reckoning), Luther publicly burnt this bull with a copy of the Canon Law, and on 4th January, 1521, the second bull was issued expelling him from the Romish Church. Blackie's Modern Cyclopedia states with regard to this: "From this time Luther formally separated from the Roman Church, and many of the principal German nobles, the most eminent scholars, and the University of Wittemberg, publicly declared in favor of the reformed doctrines and discipline. Luther's bold refusal to recant at the Diet of Worms (17th April, 1521) gave him increased power, while the Edict of Worms and the ban of the Emperor made his cause a political matter."

THE TIME OF THE END

MILLENNIAL DAWN, Vol. III., proves from a study of Daniel's prophecy of the 1260 days that the Time of the End is a period of 115 years, beginning with 1799 and ending with 1914 A.D. Wondering whether there might be a time-parallel here also, I reckoned back 115 years from 606 B.C., and reached the year 721 B.C. as corresponding with the year 1799 A.D. This date I found to be exactly five years before the death of King Hezekiah. Isaiah 38:5 tells us that the date of Hezekiah's "sickness unto death," from which he miraculously recovered, was fifteen years prior to his death, and was, therefore, ten years before the date 721 B.C., or, in other words, 125 years before 606 B.C. Reckoning a similar period back from 1914 A.D. brings us to 1789 A.D., the year of the French Revolution, from which Christendom recovered, though it must have seemed to be a "sickness unto death."

We are told that, after his recovery, Hezekiah gave way once more to his vain-glory and received the Babylonian ambassadors, just as France once more favored Papacy. We also read that he afterwards led water into Jerusalem for the refreshing of the Lord's people. This seems to shadow forth the founding of the various Bible Societies at the beginning of the last century, mentioned in DAWN III., page 51.

[R3575 : page 180]

TIME-PARALLELS
PERIOD OF 393 YEARS FROM THE DIVISION OF THE TYPICAL KINGDOM TILL ITS FINAL OVERTHROW.   Division of Kingdom of Fleshly Israel into Judah and Ephraim – 2 Chron. 10; 11:1-4.
 
 
 
 
 
 
B.C. 999 A.D. 1521 Division of "Christendom" into Protestantism and Papacy at Diet of Worms.
 
 
 
PERIOD OF 393 YEARS FROM THE DIVISION OF CHRISTENDOM TILL ITS FINAL OVERTHROW.
PERIOD OF 125 YEARS. Hezekiah's "sickness unto death," followed by
(1) Alliance with Babylon;
(2) Supply of water to Jerusalem. – Isa. 38, 39; 2 Chron. 32:30.
 
B.C. 731 A.D. 1789 The French Revolution, followed by (1) Alliance with Papacy.
(2) Supply of truth through Bible Societies.
PERIOD OF 125 YEARS.
Final overthrow of the typical Kingdom. – 2 Chron. 36:11-21; Ezek. 21:25-27. B.C. 606 A.D. 1914 Final overthrow of Nominal Christendom.
THE SUN-DIAL OF AHAZ

What struck me in examining the above was that the year of the French Revolution, typified by Hezekiah's sickness, was ten years back from the end of the 1260 days of Daniel, the beginning of the Time of the End. Can it be that the sign of the sun-dial given to Hezekiah (Isa. 38:7,8,22) should be taken as a prophecy of this, the ten degrees (or steps, R.V.) representing ten years? Did the sign indicate symbolically that, just as the shadow on the sun-dial, on account of Hezekiah's repentance, was set back ten steps, so the date of the French Revolution would be set back ten years, i.e., that after this revolution would break out in 1789 A.D., ten years would require to elapse before the beginning of the Time of the End? The fact that the prophet Isaiah immediately proceeds (ch. 40) to refer to this Time of the End would seem to support this view. [R3574 : page 180]

THE 2300 DAYS OF DANIEL

The year 1846 A.D., which ended the 2300 days of Daniel, has been shown in DAWN, Vol. III., to be the date of the cleansing of the sanctuary. The corresponding date in the typical kingdom was 674 B.C. I cannot find this date specified directly in the history of the typical kingdom, but it is significant that at this time the wicked King Manasseh had reigned 42 out of his total 55 years, 674 B.C., therefore, probably corresponds to the date of his repentance and consequent cleansing of the sanctuary.

KING JOSIAH

The period of the good King Josiah's activity extended from 651 till 641, and consisted of a cleansing and reforming work. It ended in 641 with the finding of the Book of the Law and the celebration of the Great Passover. The parallel period in the Gospel Age was from 1869 till 1879, the period when most of your cleansing and reforming work was done. So far as I can gather, it was about 1869 that you began to inquire into the teaching of the creeds and of the Scriptures, and it was in 1879 that you founded ZION'S WATCH TOWER, for the purpose of upholding the doctrine of the ransom in all its fulness against the attacks of Mr. Barbour and others, and of announcing the Great Passover, the resurrection of the "dead in Christ" in the year 1878 A.D. and the passing-over of the feet-members since that date at the moment of death.

THE NUMBER FORTY

When we turn back to the early history of the typical kingdom, we find that Saul, David and Solomon each reigned 40 years. It is clear that the reign of Saul represents the Jewish Age, that of David the Gospel Age, and that of Solomon the Millennial Age. The fact that the duration of each reign was 40 years indicates that it represented a complete period of testing and sifting. This would appear to be the thought underlying the number 40 in all the instances in which it is used in the Scriptures. For instance, there were the 40 years' temptation of the children of Israel in the wilderness, Christ's 40 days' temptation, etc. They all seem to foreshadow the 40 years of harvest at the end of the Jewish, of the Gospel, and (possibly) of the Millennial Ages.

THREE DAYS AND THREE NIGHTS

It is clear from the Scriptures that Jesus rose on the first day of the week (Mark 16:2), and also that this was "the third day" after his death (Luke 24:21,46; 1 Cor. 15:4; also Lev. 23:11). It follows that he must have been crucified on a Friday. That this is of importance in estimating the dates of Jesus' birth and death, is pointed out in DAWN II., p.60. Some object to this that Jesus in saying (Matt. 12:40) that he would be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth, contradicted the statement by the Apostle Paul that he rose on the third day. Those who reason in this way have failed to note that the phrase used by Jesus was purely idiomatic, and implied that he would be in the heart of the earth "till the third day." The proof of this is to be found in Esther 4:16; 5:1; Gen. 42:17,18; 2 Chron. 10:5,12. God is his own interpreter.

THE YEAR OF JUBILEE

I had always taken it for granted that the year of Jubilee was an ecclesiastical year; but on studying this subject recently, I noticed that the trumpet was to sound on the day of atonement, the 10th day of the 7th month (Lev. 25:9), and presumably, therefore, began on that day. Accordingly, the year of Jubilee was not an ecclesiastical year, i.e., from Spring to Spring, but a civil year from Autumn to Autumn.

As every 7th year was a Sabbath year, it follows that the 49th year was a Sabbath year. It would seem as if these were ecclesiastical years. If so, then the Jubilee year began in the middle of the 49th year. But it was called the 50th year! Should one reason from this [R3574 : page 180] that it was called the 50th year because it was the 50th civil year? The entrance into Canaan took place in the Springtime at the beginning of an ecclesiastical year. Six months afterwards their 2nd civil year began, while it was still the middle of their 1st ecclesiastical year. Consequently, their 50th civil year began, while it was still the middle of their 49th ecclesiastical year. If this be the interpretation, it is evident that the land had rest on these occasions, not two years, but only eighteen months.

It would seem as if this were a wise provision of the Mosaic Law. It provided that at the beginning of each [R3576 : page 181]

THREE CHARTS OF HISTORY, SHOWING VARIOUS PARALLELS,
ALL CONFIRMATORY OF OUR CHRONOLOGICAL APPLICATIONS.

[R3575 : page 182] year of Jubilee, owing to the suspension of work on the land during the previous six months, the restitution of all things was rendered easier of accomplishment; and also after the Jubilee was over, and each had returned to his own land, an opportunity was given to him to prepare the land and get his crop ready for the Spring harvest and the celebration of the Passover and of Pentecost.

There seem, however, to be some deeper meanings in this arrangement. (1) The commencement of the Jubilee year on the day of atonement pointed forward to the time when the antitypical Jubilee would begin on the antitypical day of atonement, the end of the Gospel Age. (2) Brother Hemery of London mentioned to me some time ago that he had noticed that events which occurred in the Spring foreshadowed blessings for the Church, while those which occurred in the Autumn foreshadowed blessings for the world. This appears to me to be a natural arrangement, as Spring is the beginning of the ecclesiastical year, whereas Autumn is the beginning of the civil year. Applying this thought, we find that the Passover and Pentecost, etc., foreshadowed blessings for the Church, whereas the Atonement, the Feast of Tabernacles and the Jubilee foreshadowed blessings for the world.

I am, with love in the Lord to you and to all the dear ones in Christ Jesus,

Yours faithfully,
JOHN EDGAR.

A LATER LETTER
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL: –

The Lord has guided me to the discovery of another confirmation of the Chronology as set forth in MILLENNIAL DAWN. In studying the Parallel Dispensations, I noted that the 70th week of Daniel's prophecy (Dan. 9:24-27) from 29 till 36 A.D. had its parallel as regards both time and events in the Gospel Age from 1874 till 1881 A.D. (DAWN II., p.219). Thinking that the events at the beginning of the 70 weeks might also have parallels in the Gospel Age, I noted your arguments in DAWN II., p.67, proving that the 70 weeks dated from Nehemiah's commission to build the walls of Jerusalem in the 20th year of Artaxerxes (Neh. 2:1), whereas usually they are reckoned as beginning at the time of Ezra's commission 13 years earlier (Ezra 7:7). I noted also your proofs that the former must have been in the year 454 B.C. Accordingly the latter must have been in the year 467 B.C.

Rollin, in his Ancient History of the Medes and Persians, agrees with this. In Book 6, sect. 18, he says that Xerxes died in 473 B.C. and quotes as authorities Ctesias, c.ii; Diodorus, Book xi. p.52; Justin, Book iii., ch. 1. He says Xerxes reigned 12 years; and in Book 7, sect. 1, he states that Artaxerxes was crowned in 473 B.C., and reigned 49 years. In accordance with this, he mentions in sect. 6 of Book 7, that Ezra's commission was in 467 B.C., and Nehemiah's in 454 B.C. Regarding the latter he states: "Artaxerxes immediately caused a decree to be drawn up that the walls and gates of Jerusalem should be rebuilt, and Nehemiah as Governor of Judea was appointed to put this decree in execution. It is from this decree, communicated by Artaxerxes in the 20th year of his reign, for the rebuilding of the walls of Jerusalem, that we date the beginning of the 70 weeks mentioned in the famous prophecy of Daniel, after which the Messiah was to appear and to be put to death."

By deducting 490 years from 1881 A.D., we get the year 1391 A.D., corresponding with 454 B.C. The year 1378 A.D., 13 years earlier, will, therefore, correspond with 467 B.C.

I. EZRA'S COMMISSION IN 467 B.C.

On consulting books on the Reformation, I was not long in discovering that the year 1378 A.D., corresponding with the year 467 B.C., is a very important date indeed. It is the year of the Great Papal Schism, when Wycliffe came out as the Reformer.

Workman in Dawn of the Reformation, p.172: – "Wycliffe's spiritual earnestness was shocked, his theory destroyed by the spectacle of two Popes each claiming to be the sole head of the Church, each labelling the other as Antichrist. To Wycliffe, the year of the Schism, 1378, was the crucial year of his life. He first urged that both Popes should be set aside as having little in common with the Church of the Holy God. From this position of neutrality he quickly passes into one of antagonism to the Papacy itself."

Archbishop Trench in Medieval Church History:"Gregory XI. died on 27th March, 1378, and the Papal Schism broke out. The year 1378 marked the turning-point in Wycliffe's career. Hitherto he had concerned himself with matters of mixed ecclesiastical and political import, but henceforth he devoted himself exclusively to doctrinal matters and came out as the Reformer. He began in earnest the translation of the Bible into English, and took the next decisive step by an open attack, forced upon him by his studies of the Bible, against Transubstantiation. The effect was immediate. The University itself turned against him. He was forbidden to teach. Ever afterwards he did, in nearly all his writings, introduce in some way a statement of his views upon Transubstantiation."

Can anything be more conclusive than that we have here a parallel, not only in time, but also in the events recorded between Ezra's commission in 467 B.C. and Wycliffe's acts in 1378 A.D.? Ezra in leading back from Babylon many of the Israelites, and bringing with him the vessels for the service of the house of God (Ezra 7:19,20) did for the literal temple what Wycliffe by his doctrinal reforms, especially by his attack upon the doctrine of Transubstantiation, did for the spiritual temple.

II. NEHEMIAH'S COMMISSION IN 454 B.C.

The year 1391 A.D. corresponds with the year 454 B.C. when Nehemiah received his commission to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem. Wycliffe died in 1384, before he could personally carry into effect all that he had longed for, but his works followed him. It was John Hus of Bohemia who more particularly took up the work of reform after Wycliffe's death. Though it was in the early years of the 15th century, up till his martyrdom in 1415 A.D., that his work attracted general notice, yet it was in 1391 that Hus might be said to have received his commission to rebuild the walls of Spiritual Jerusalem, for it was in that year that he became acquainted with the works of Wycliffe (Blackie's Modern Cyclopedia,Vol. IV., p.483).

Thatcher and Schwill in Europe in the Middle Ages, p.539: – "Political considerations, the alliance between [R3577 : page 183] Henry V. and the Papacy, led to repeated persecutions of his followers, and so all of Wycliffe's efforts at Reform came to nothing. But the cry for the reform of the Church was never again hushed in Europe. Through one of his pupils, John Hus of Prague, his teachings were carried to Bohemia, where they also caused a great uprising." "Hus condemned its (Papacy's) worldliness, its right of secular possessions, and objected to the supremacy of the Pope. The Bible, according to him, ought to be the sole rule of faith."

Professor Lodge in Close of the Middle Ages, p.207: – "The systematic teaching of Hus was for the most part derived from the great English teacher, John Wycliffe. It is important to remember that the Hussite movement had a secular as well as an ecclesiastical side."

Burnet in History of the Reformation, p.9: – "Before the end of the 14th century, Wycliffe had extended his line of attack to some of the special doctrines of Western theology: but the movement which he began, though its effects were evanescent in his own country, became in the hands of more stimulating advocates a genuine national force in Bohemia."

III. THE SEVEN WEEKS OF DAN. 9:25

Is there anything in the Gospel Age to explain the mysterious division of the 70 weeks into 7 and 62 and 1? By seven weeks is meant a period of 49 years. As the seven weeks date from Nehemiah's commission, the year under consideration will be 1440 A.D. This is the time that Printing was invented, a very important factor in the Reformation.

Archbishop Trench in Medieval Church History, p.423: – "Then while abuses were never rifer, while the lives of the clergy were never fuller of scandal, while the Papal Court was never more venal, nor could less endure the beating upon it of that fierce light which leaves nothing hid, – the invention of Printing (1440) multiplied a thousandfold every voice which was raised to proclaim an abuse or to denounce a corruption. And marching hand in hand with this wondrous invention there was the Revival of Learning."

IV. THE RETURN FROM THE BABYLONIAN CAPTIVITY (536 B.C.) AND THE CONSEQUENT LAYING OF THE FOUNDATIONS OF THE TEMPLE AT JERUSALEM

The restoration was not begun, but was finished by Ezra in 467 B.C. In accordance with the Edict of Cyrus (536 B.C.) many of the Israelites returned from Babylon and laid the foundations of the Temple. Ezra 4:24, however, states that the work then "ceased unto the 2nd year of the reign of Darius, king of Persia." The length of time from the Edict of Cyrus in 536 B.C. till the end of the 70 weeks in 36 A.D. is 572 years. Accordingly, the date in the Gospel Age which corresponds with 536 B.C. is 1881 minus 572, equal to 1309 A.D. This year is of importance as marking the first year of what is universally known as the "Babylonian Captivity" of the Papacy at Avignon, which is generally recognized as forming the foundation of the Reformation. It is curious that the year 536, which in the Jewish Age concluded the Babylonian Captivity of the Israelites, corresponds with the year 1309 in the Gospel Age, which began the "Babylonian Captivity" of the Papacy. [May we not reverse the form of this statement and say that it rather marked the first favorable condition for the liberation of the Truth, which had long been in bondage to Papacy? – Editor.]

Archbishop Trench in Medieval Church History, p.275: – "Then in 1305 the French king contrived that the choice should fall on one who had so sold himself to carry out the wishes and policy of France that he did not feel anywhere safe from popular indignation except on the northern side of the Alps and under the protection of him whom he had engaged to serve. After a brief residence at Bordeaux and then at Poitiers, Clement V. fixed his seat at Avignon. There from 1309 to 1377 he and six following Popes resided. The 'Babylonish Captivity' is the name by which this voluntary exile in a foreign land with a servile dependence on a foreign power, which this exile entailed, is often designated, the name having been suggested by the 70 years or thereabouts for which this exile endured. The Popes could no longer be regarded as independent umpires and arbiters. Nevertheless, they advanced claims to a universal monarchy which stood in ridiculous contrast with their own absolute dependence on the Court of France, a dependence so abject that there were times when the Pope dared not give away the smallest preferment without permission first obtained of the French king."

Professor Lodge in Close of the Middle Ages, p.30: – "In 1309 Clement V. fixed his residence at Avignon. As long as the Popes continued to live there, they were exposed to overwhelming French influence, and could hardly escape the charge made both from England and from Germany, that they were mere vassals of the King of France. It says much for the vitality of the Papal System that the 'Babylonian Captivity,' as the next 70 years have been called, did not result in the complete loss not only of the Italian Provinces, but of all spiritual authority in Europe."

Workman in Dawn of the Reformation, Vol. I, p.16: – "The study of the Reformation should always begin with Avignon. The greatness of Luther and Calvin, as contrasted for instance with Marsiglio, Wycliffe and Gerson, does not lie so much in greater zeal, more thorough methods, more logical aim, as in their greater opportunity. The fulness of the time had come."

V. THE REBUILDING OF THE TEMPLE IN THE SECOND TO THE SIXTH YEARS OF DARIUS

As already mentioned, it was only the foundations of the temple which were laid on the return from Babylon. Building operations were not properly begun until the second year of the reign of Darius Hystaspes, king of Persia, and the temple was finished in the sixth year of his reign (Ezra 4:24; 6:15). Ussher's chronology gives the second year of Darius as 520 B.C., and the various authorities seem to corroborate this by placing the date of his accession in the year 521. According to this, the rebuilding of the temple began 16 years after the return from Babylon. The corresponding date in the Gospel Age is 1325 (equals 1309 plus 16). The greatest work about this time was the publication of a book against the Papacy by Marsiglio of Padua, but all the authorities which I consulted were unanimous in stating that the year of publication of this book was 1324, not 1325 B.C. Accordingly, I was forced to conclude that there was no time-parallel here, or, as seemed more likely, that the second year of Darius was 521, and not 520 as affirmed. I spent several days in searching all the works on the history of Persia to which I had access, and at length my efforts were rewarded. Professor Rawlinson, in his Five Great Monarchies, Vol. 3, p.404, states that Darius mounted the throne on 1st January, 521 B.C., [R3577 : page 184] and he then adds in a footnote on page 408, in connection with the statements of Ezra 5:2 and Haggai 1:14,15, that "according to Jewish modes of reckoning" the 24th day of the 6th month of the second year of Darius, would be September, 521 B.C., 8-½ months after Darius' accession." There can be no doubt that this is the true explanation, as both Haggai and Ezra would reckon by the ecclesiastical year beginning in the Spring.

The rebuilding of the temple would, therefore, occupy the four years from 521 to 517 B.C., and the corresponding years in the Gospel Age would be 1324 to 1328 A.D. It was in 1324 that Marsiglio published his famous book, Defensor Pacis (Defender of the Peace), and in 1328 he died. In the autumn of the same year the Emperor Lewis, who had been induced to attempt some of the reforms advocated by Marsiglio, deprived of his (Marsiglio's) advice retired from Rome and relinquished the attempt.

Archbishop Trench in his Medieval Church History, p.280, in describing the story of the "Babylonish Captivity," says: – "As might easily be supposed, words bolder than had ever been uttered before, words striking at the root of the Papal system, and leaving none of its prerogatives unassailed, had found utterances during this time; and more ominous than all the rest, these had not come from such as stood avowedly without the Church's pale, but from those within. Foremost among the threatening births of the first half of the 14th century is a book, the "Defensor Pacis," written by a physician of Padua, Marsiglio by name (died 1328), in the immediate service of Lewis of Bavaria. No later hand has traced with a finer historical tact the mundane conditions which first made possible, and then favored, the upgrowth of the Papal power; none has searched out with more unpitiable logic the weak places of the Papal armor. An epoch-making book, Neander calls it; and certain, for good or for evil, it was far in advance of its age; so far, that it is difficult to understand how it could very strongly have influenced its age."

Workman in Dawn of the Reformation, Vol. I, p.80: – "In June, 1324, with the help of his friend, John of Jandun, – 'the two pests,' as the Pope called them, 'from the abyss of Satan' – he wrote his great work in the incredible space of two months. Two years later, in the summer of 1326, he joined himself to Lewis. He became the leader in a band of visionaries who urged the emperor on in his struggle with 'the great dragon and old serpent,' John XXII. In treatise after treatise, both Marsiglio and Ockham criticised the nature of the Papal power, denied its claims and demanded the restoration of secular supremacy." Page 85: – "The works of Marsiglio give us in clear outline the ideals which now regulate the progress of Europe. The bolts which he forged have shattered the doctrine of divine right and the temporal claims of Papacy. In his emphasis of the value of Scripture, though the hand that wrote was the hand of Marsiglio, the voice seems the voice of Luther: in his call to the laity he foreshadowed Wesley: in his views as to the rights of separate congregations, he was a forerunner of the Independents."

Professor Lodge in his work, The Close of the Middle Ages, p.98, speaking about the struggle between the Emperor Lewis and Pope John XXII., says: – "No previous contest between the rival heads of Christendom [R3578 : page 184] had produced so much literature, or literature of such merit and significance. Michael of Cesena, the General of the Franciscan Order, John of Jandun, and William of Ockham, the 'Invincible Doctor,' exhausted the subtleties of the scholastic philosophy in their championship of the imperial position against Papal pretensions. Above all, Marsiglio of Padua, in his great work, the Defensor Pacis, examined with equal acuteness and insight the fundamental relations of the spiritual and secular powers, and laid down principles which were destined to find, at any rate, partial expression in the Reformation. This outburst of literary and philosophical activity was due in great part to the fact that for the first time in the long strife between Papacy and Empire, the struggle involved doctrinal ideas. Hitherto, the contest had been between Church and State, and the Church had been for the most part united. But on the present occasion the Church was profoundly divided. In spite of all the advantages on the side of the Emperor, the quarrel ended, not exactly in a Papal triumph, yet in the complete and humiliating discomfiture of Lewis. Doubtless the personal character of the Emperor contributed essentially to this result. He could take strenuous measures under the influence of a stronger will, but when he lost his adviser, Marsiglio, his habitual irresolution and his superstitious dread of excommunication returned upon him. In January, 1328, he was crowned Emperor by two bishops who had been excommunicated. In May, Peter di Corvara, a Franciscan friar, nominated by the Emperor, and accepted by the acclamations of the citizens, assumed the Papal title as Nicholas V. Lewis had committed himself to an enterprise which he had neither the moral nor the material force to carry through. He retired to the Ghibelline strongholds in the north, accompanied by his Antipope. The Roman populace, with characteristic inconstancy, expelled the imperial partisans, and opened their gates to the Orsini and the Neapolitan troops."

The following extract from Poole's Age of Wycliffe, p.28, indicates some of the chief thoughts in Marsiglio's teaching. "Marsiglio's chief work, the Defensor Pacis, was written in 1324, while he was still at the University of Paris. He taught Republicanism. The community of all the citizens or their majority, expressing its will either by elected representatives or in their assembled mass, is the supreme power in the State. The people must choose a ruler, but to the hereditary principle he will make no concession whatever. The name Church belongs to the entire body of Christian men. It is intolerable that its prerogatives should be usurped by the sacerdotal order. Excommunication, for instance, cannot rightly be decreed by any priest or any council of priests. The verdict belongs to the community of the faithful. The power of the clergy is entirely restricted to spiritual affairs; it can only be given effect to by spiritual means. Of heresy as such there is but one judge, Jesus Christ, and his sentence is in the world to come. Errors of opinion lie beyond the cognisance of human judicature. In the New Testament, bishop and priest are convertible designations of the same persons, and the popedom is a later institution of which the historical growth is clearly traceable. St. Peter had no authority over the other apostles; but even supposing he had, it is hazardous to assert that he communicated it to his successors in the Roman See, since we cannot say for certain that he himself ever visited, far less was Bishop of, Rome at all. The Pope in his quality of Christian Bishop can claim no right of supreme judgment [R3578 : page 185] in human things, even over the clergy. The keys of St. Peter open and close the door of forgiveness, but forgiveness is the act of God, determined by the repentance of the sinner. The Turnkey is not the Judge. Marsiglio goes through the standard arguments in favor of the Papal assumptions, and rejects them one after another, partly by his resolute insistence on a rational interpretation of the texts of Scripture, partly by the essential distinction between the sacred calling of the priesthood and their extrinsic or worldly connections. My kingdom is not of this world. The ministers of the Church should be supported by those to whom they minister, but only in the necessaries of life; but no one of the faithful is bound by Scripture to pay them a tenth or any other part of his income. The clergyman might well supply his needs by other means, as by handicraft, after the example of the apostles. But now that the Church has been enriched by ample endowments, the question arises, To whom do these belong? Marsiglio replies that the property can only belong to the person or persons who gave it, or to the State. Nor can the clergyman claim the entire use of it: he is the administrator of a Trust, and what is left over after his daily food and raiment are supplied, must be distributed to the poor. Wycliffe was seen by Pope Gregory XI. to be the successor of Marsiglio."

B. C.   A. D.
Return of the Israelites from the Babylonian Captivity to restore the Temple at Jerusalem. Only the foundations laid. (Ezra 1:1-3; 3:10.) 536 1309 The beginning of what is known as the "Babylonian Captivity" of the Papacy at Avignon. Generally recognized as the foundation of the Reformation.
"Babylonian Captivity" of the Papacy
Restoration of the Temple in 2d to 6th years of Darius (Ezra 4:24; 6:15). 521 1324 Publication by Marsiglio of Padua of the "Defensor Pacis."
Ezra's commission in the 7th year of Artaxerxes to restore vessels to Temple (Ezra 7:7, 19.) 467 1378 The year of the Great Papal Schism which caused Wycliffe in the same year (1) to come out as a Reformer, (2) to translate Bible into English, (3) to renounce transubstantiation.
The Seventy Weeks – 490 Years. 7 Weeks Nehemiah's commission in 20th year of Artaxerxes to rebuild walls of Jerusalem. (Neh. 2:1.) Troublous times. 454 1391 Year when Hus became acquainted with Wycliffe's writings. He carried Wycliffe's teachings into effect. Troublous times. 7 Weeks The Seventy Weeks – 490 Years.
62 Weeks End of the 7 weeks, followed by more favorable times. 405 1440 Invention of printing followed by more favorable times. 62 Weeks
70th Week Advent of Messiah as Prince. A.D.
29
1874 Advent of Messiah as King. 70th Week
Crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus. A.D.
33
1878 Resurrection of the saints.
Beginning at Berlin Congress of return of favor to the Jews.
Beginning of the casting-off of the church.
Beginning of the casting off of the Jews at end of exclusive favor to Jews. A.D.
36
1881 End of exclusive favor to church.
Destruction of Jerusalem and of Jews' national polity. 69 1914 Full loss of favor to churchianity.
Full loss of favor to the Jews, and anarchy. 70 1915 Destruction of nominal Christendom in anarchy.
Full return of favor to the Jews.

I have given this somewhat fully, as it is so much in line with our own views, setting them down in the order in which they occurred to me in the course of my investigations. On reviewing them, I feel more certain than ever that the hand of God has been in the affairs of men. Such correspondencies could not be due to chance. [R3579 : page 185] Prior to 536 B.C. and 1309 A.D., fleshly and Spiritual Israel were completely in the power of Babylon, but these years marked the turning-point, and then step by step the Great Reform went on. The people had been punished for their sins, but now God was beginning to bestow his favor upon them for a season in order to prepare them for the Messiah. Each of the items noted above was a distinct step in the reformation of Jews and Christians. So much for the beginning of the 70 weeks. The events at the end of the 70 weeks are detailed in DAWN II.

The prophecy of the 70 weeks does not, however, indicate when the final overthrow would take place, and, except for the reference to the seven weeks, no mention is made of any events in the interval between the commission of Nehemiah and the 70th week. In line with this, we find that the historical canon of the Old Testament ends with Ezra and Nehemiah. It is evident that God did not intend to indicate the Lutheran movement in connection with this prophecy. This might have appeared strange to me had I not formerly seen that this movement was typified by the division of the Kingdom of Israel on the death of Solomon. All the above stages of reform were in the Church, but Luther's reform was a complete revolt, resulting in a division of the Kingdom, and was, therefore, best represented by the division of the typical Kingdom of Israel before its final overthrow by Nebuchadnezzar.

Dear Brother, I shall be glad to hear what you think of these time-parallels. So far as I can judge at present, they seem to me to be very conclusive, and have helped to confirm me very strongly in the opinion that your views regarding the times are correct. I feel convinced. The "Truth is mighty and will prevail."

Yours in Him, JOHN EDGAR.

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Below we give an outline chart built upon the Bible chronology presented in MILLENNIAL DAWN and embodying our original "Chart of the Ages." It presents additionally several new features, "parallels," which no doubt will be both interesting and instructive. It is by Bro. U. G. Lee.

THE TWO MINISTRATIONS
If the ministration of condemnation be glory, much more doth the ministration of righteousness exceed in glory. 2 Cor. 3:9.

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THE CHRIST, THE SON OF GOD.
JOHN 20:31. – JUNE 25. –

Golden Text: – "But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name."

O
UR Golden Text is a very appropriate one for a review lesson, preparatory to a new course of studies in the Old Testament. We have been considering the testimonies of the Evangelists respecting the words and mighty works of him who spake as never man spake, and who, as the finger of God, as a small manifestation of divine power, cast out devils, healed the sick, awakened the dead. John sums up the object, the purpose, of these records, saying that they were written to the intent that we might believe on Jesus as the Christ, the Son of God.

Some in our day, totally misunderstanding the divine plan with reference to human salvation, would be inclined to say – What difference whether we believe that Jesus is the Christ the Son of God, or believe merely that he was an ordinary man, a wise and good man, the son of Joseph? Would not his conduct and teachings be just the same in either event? And is it not the teachings of Jesus and their moral influence that we seek as a power over men rather than any faith in him? What is the value of faith anyway? is it not works that we wish? If a man have good works without faith would he not be just as acceptable to God as if he had [R3580 : page 186] faith? In what way would faith profit or benefit any?

We answer that this is human reasoning merely, and that it ignores the divine plan and record, which is to the effect that "without faith it is impossible to please God." It seems strange to some – impossible to believe this Scriptural declaration – to accept the fact that an imperfect man with faith is acceptable to God, while the best man in the world without faith would be unacceptable. Nevertheless, this is the divine arrangement respecting the work of God which he is accomplishing during this Gospel age.

KNOWLEDGE AND WORKS BY AND BY.

The Scriptures indicate to us that by and by the knowledge of the Lord shall be so complete, so fill [R3580 : page 187] the earth, that at that time the word faith will have practically lost its present meaning, knowledge taking the place of what is now termed faith. In that time knowledge and works will be what the Lord will require of mankind. All the avenues of knowledge will be open to the human family, the knowledge of the glory of God will fill the whole earth as the waters cover the great deep, and with that knowledge obedience will be required – obedience to the extent of ability, and increasing ability will be the reward of every effort until, at the close of the Millennial age, all who will may actually have attained full perfection of human nature that was lost in Eden. That will be the age of works, as we read in Revelation 20:12. The whole world will stand on trial for life eternal, and their judgment will be in harmony with the principles already enunciated in the Word of God, and the decision will be "according to their works" – not according to their faith, as it is with us in this Gospel age.

During this Gospel age the Lord is seeking a certain class able to exercise faith, a class whose conduct will be largely influenced by their faith. It is this class that is addressed throughout the Scriptures, and their faith is continually appealed to as in our text – "These things are written that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God." The Apostle declares that God's method of dealing seems foolish to the world – "It has pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe." The world thinks it strange that believers should be saved on account of their belief rather than from the standpoint of works. But whoever wants to avail himself of the present privileges of this Gospel dispensation must accept the Lord's terms or none. It is he and not the Evangelist who has decided that faith is an essential. First, before we can come to God, we must believe that he is and that he will reward those who seek him, those who desire to come into heart-relationship with him. Whoever cannot thus believe in advance is barred from coming to God at all in this present time. If he exercises faith to this extent he may go on to still greater and deeper and broader faith.

To him who seeks to thus approach God in fellowship, the Lord is pleased to point out that sinners can have no relationship to him except they come through the appointed Mediator who redeemed us with his precious blood and made possible our reconciliation with the Father. If the believer accepts this as the divine provision he may rejoice in the thought that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he rose again on the third day for our justification. If he cannot believe this he must stop just where he is – he finds no access into divine favor and fellowship. He may find access into errors and false doctrines, but he can find no fellowship, no assistance from God, no correct information respecting the divine plan. If he takes this step, accepts Christ through faith, then he may have peace with God through Jesus Christ our Lord. Still, faith will be necessary if he would go on. To the justified believers during this Gospel age God has been pleased to make known further riches of his grace, namely, the call of the Church to joint-heirship with the Lord in his Kingdom, "If so be that we suffer with him that we may also be glorified together." – Rom. 8:17.

But this inspired hope can only be ours to the extent that we exercise still further faith in God, in his love, and in the messages which he has sent us through his Son and through the apostles and prophets. Even if these be accepted, and we have thus "access into the grace of God wherein we stand, hoping for the glory of God," it will be necessary for us to still exercise faith in order to make progress in the narrow way thus entered and to ultimately attain the glory, honor and immortality promised. Thus it is written, "Be thou faithful unto death and I will give thee a crown of life," and again, "This is the victory that overcometh the world, even thy faith." So we see that faith marks every step of progress for those who are the called according to the divine purpose during this Gospel age.

PARTICULAR FAITH NECESSARY.

Another mistake frequently made is to suppose that the faith which God requires is a vague and indefinite one – anything. On the contrary, the Scriptures delineate very particularly the kind of faith acceptable to God. We have already shown as a first prerequisite a faith in the personality of God and in his willingness to be approached by his creatures; second, a faith in him, that he is the Way, the Truth and the Life, by whom alone we can approach the Father. Our text emphasizes this thought of a particular faith, declaring that the faith must be that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God. What is implied in this thought, the Christ the Son of God? It means more, far more than a mere belief that Jesus lived and Jesus died, a man of Nazareth. The word Christ signifies Messiah and Messiah signifies God's anointed king. For four thousand years the Lord has been making gradually known to mankind through the prophets and apostles that he will ultimately establish a Kingdom of righteousness in the earth, "under the whole heavens." That through this Kingdom for which we pray, "Thy Kingdom come," all mankind are ultimately to be blessed and righteousness established in the earth upon a sure footing, and all sin and iniquity be overthrown, and this Kingdom is to be under the control of Messiah, the great King, the divinely appointed Ruler. The thought of our text, then, is that Jesus must be recognized as more than a man who died; he must be recognized as the long-promised King of the world and as the Son of the Highest.

MESSIANIC HOPES INSPIRING.

To be without any hope of a future would make the present existence terrible; to think of death as ending all would be to rob life of its chief blessing and hope. Fortunately but few of mankind are in this absolutely hopeless condition; but to attract attention away from the divine plan, and its reasonable and efficient hopes and promises respecting the Millennial Kingdom, and the blessing under that Kingdom of every nation, people, kindred and tongue, seems to have been the [R3580 : page 188] object of the Adversary. He has introduced false hopes which can never appear to mankind to be thoroughly reasonable because they are most unreasonable – the hope on the one hand that they do not die and on the other hand that they go to heaven when they die, the hope that death does not mean death. These fallacious hopes are delusions which may satisfy the mind temporarily, but which in the end, with all who will reason, must prove unsatisfactory.

The only faith that will stand the test and bring us off conquerors over the spirit of the world, the flesh and the Adversary, is the hope set before us in the Gospel, of which Jesus as the Messiah is the center. That is the hope of the world – the hope that Christ having redeemed the world with his precious blood will grant, in due time, a blessing of opportunity to every creature, that whosoever will may come through knowledge and obedience to life eternal and that the disobedient shall be destroyed in the second death. A further part of this hope of which Jesus, the Messiah, is the center, is that those who are now called, the obedient through faith, shall be joint-heirs with the Master in the great Kingdom which shall bless the world. No wonder the Apostle said of this Messianic hope, this Kingdom hope, "He that hath this hope in him purifieth himself even as he is pure."

LIFE THROUGH BELIEVING.

The Apostle in the latter part of the text pursues this thought of the necessity of faith, saying that the believing ones may have life through the name, through the power, through the authority of this Messiah – by virtue of the work which he has accomplished for them and the door of opportunity which he has opened to them. The unbelieving have no such door of opportunity now. Thank God there will be a glorious opportunity of another kind for them in a coming age, but they are barred by their unbelief from participation in God's favor now, because the present salvation is based wholly upon this as a condition – faith in Jesus as the Messiah.

Believing is not only the precedent to the life to come, to be attained at the resurrection, but it is also precedent to a proper life in the present time. Indeed it is a very easily discerned principle that whoever would be accounted worthy of a part in the first resurrection must begin the new life in the present time and have his trial here. In other words, unless we are begotten of the Spirit now to newness of life, unless we be risen with Christ to walk with him in newness of life, unless we develop as new creatures, we will never be fit for eternal life, which is offered to us as a reward – life with our Lord, glory, honor and immortality. How essential then it is that we have faith in Jesus as the Christ, the Son of God; how necessary that this faith work in us to will and to do God's pleasure, that our [R3581 : page 188] faith be so living, so real, that it will influence the entire course of life, transforming us by the renewing of our minds and sanctifying us to the Lord and to his service, changing us from glory to glory, in the likeness of the Lord, and generally making us meet, fit, for the Kingdom which God hath promised to them that love him.

The Apostle in the beginning of the Gospel age referred to the Jews, and remarked that as a nation they had from the Lord much advantage every way over other nations and peoples, chiefly in that to them were committed the oracles of God, a knowledge of the divine plan, even though that knowledge were more or less vailed in symbols and scattered in mysterious statements. But accepting that as a fact, what can we say of Spiritual Israel? Certainly we can say that she enjoys much advantage every way, not only advantages over and above those possessed by the heathen, but advantages over those possessed by the Jews. To us the oracles of God are no longer vailed and hidden, but open by the grace of God through the holy Spirit. We can see a depth of meaning and beauty in the words of the Law and the prophets that the Jews never discerned, for we are guided into these by the inspired explanations of the Lord and the apostles and by the illumination of our minds through the holy Spirit.

And if this be true in respect to the Gospel age in general, what shall we say of the special advantages and privileges and unfoldings of the divine Word accorded to us who are now living in the end of this age – to us who now have the convenience of the Word of the Lord in printed form, with marginal references, concordances and various Bible study helps? What advantage have we? Much every way, we reply, even over the believers of the early Church.

If of these early Christians it was required that their faith should bring a corresponding life, as of those risen from the dead, seeking the things above, much more should this be true of us who now with still greater knowledge of the divine plan should have a still larger and fuller appreciation of the grace of God in Christ, and a still fuller desire to live the new life and to ultimately be accounted worthy of the new body in the resurrection, and that the new life should be made everlasting. By the grace of God, dear brethren and sisters, let us attain to this which has been placed within our grasp. As the Apostle says, let us lay aside every weight and every easily besetting sin and let us run with patience the race set before us in the Gospel: Looking unto Jesus the author of our faith who will also be its finisher. We have been studying the various experiences of our dear Master, and now we are to remember that we are called to walk in his steps, to suffer with him that we may also reign with him. Every feature of his experiences should be profitable to us and any victory of his should give us more courage, realizing that greater is he that is for us than all they that be against us.

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BOASTERS DEFEATED, PRAYERS HELPED.
2 CHRON. 32:9-23. – JULY 2. –

Golden Text: – "With us is the Lord our God to help us, and to fight our battles." – 2 Chron. 32:8.

T
HE International Sunday School course of Bible studies now changes from the New Testament to the Old. The present lesson relates to one of the severe experiences that came upon the people of Judah under the reign of good King Hezekiah. Hezekiah's father, the notoriously wicked king of Judah, lacking faith in the true God, had introduced the idolatries of Moloch, had closed the Temple against divine worship, and in every way endeavored to lead the minds of the people into the idolatrous ways of the surrounding nations. Doubtless he reasoned that, as Israel was once a mighty nation yet had latterly made much less progress than the nations round about that were idolatrous, this should be understood to mean that idolatrous nations would prosper the more. He did not see what we see in this matter, namely, that God was not dealing with the surrounding nations, the heathen nations, but allowing them to take practically their own course, interfering with the same only as it impinged upon the features of his plan and upon the Jews, his peculiarly favored people. He did not realize that the covenant entered into between Israel and God meant great blessings for them if faithful, and implied corresponding tribulations if they were unfaithful, and that their measure of unfaithfulness had been the cause of their lack of prosperity.
SPIRITUAL BLESSINGS FOR SPIRITUAL ISRAEL.

While recognizing this truth respecting natural Israel, we should guard our minds against expecting temporal blessings as a reward now in respect to Spiritual Israel. God's promises to natural Israel were the temporal blessings on condition of their hearty obedience to his requirements. But the blessings he promises to Spiritual Israel are the spiritual kind – not temporalities. Hence, when we find that while seeking to serve the Lord faithfully we are not prospered in temporal matters, we should understand that in some way which the Lord sees he is overruling our temporal adversities for our profit in spiritual things as his Spiritual Israel, his New Creation. The failure to see the differences between the promise of earthly blessings, physical health, etc., made to natural Israel, and the blessings of spiritual favors, spiritual health, made to Spiritual Israel, has been the occasion of much confusion and stumbling to some of the Lord's people. Let us not so stumble.

Hezekiah, at the death of his father Ahaz, attained dominion over a nation already considerably impoverished; because Ahaz, failing to have the Lord for his counsellor, after making various blunders endeavored to enter into a compact with the surrounding nations. Toward the north were the Philistines, who had triumphed over him on several occasions, taking possession of much of his territory. He also feared the Egyptians, and for his protection he made an alliance with the king of Assyria, becoming a vassal king, paying tribute annually to the king of Assyria to protect him from his closer neighbors, his enemies. Thus the kingdom not only lost much of its independence, but much of its wealth and considerable of its territory; and instead of the Moloch worship advancing the national interest, as had been hoped for, the Lord, true to his covenant, had allowed troubles to greatly increase against his covenant people. We thus see that Hezekiah and the whole nation were greatly handicapped by the idolatrous course of Ahaz.

Shortly after Hezekiah took the reins of government and instituted the true worship of God at the Temple, abolishing the idolatrous worship of Moloch, etc., blessings began to flow upon him and upon the nation according to the same divine covenant. He longed to rid himself of the exactions of the Assyrian compact, and the favorable opportunity seemed to arise when Assyria was at war with Babylonia. He neglected and refused to send the annual tribute, in this going contrary to the counsel of Isaiah the prophet, and showing that although loyal to the Lord he was not without self-will. No doubt the trouble which speedily followed chastened the king and prevented his becoming more self-willed, more arrogant, less to the Lord's pleasement.

The Assyrian king, vanquishing the army of Babylonia, turned to punish the people of Judah and other surrounding nations which had withheld the tribute. The march of Sennacherib's army meant destruction and captivity to many small cities and towns on his route toward Jerusalem. Sennacherib's own account of this invasion was written upon what is commonly known as the Taylor cylinder, now in the British Museum. After an account of his triumphs over Syria, Egypt and Philistia,

SENNACHERIB GIVES THIS ACCOUNT.

"And Hezekiah, the Judaite who had not submitted to my yoke – forty-six of his fenced cities and fortresses and small towns in their vicinity without number...I besieged and took, 200,150 persons, [R3582 : page 189] small and great, male and female, horses and mules, asses, camels, large cattle, small cattle, without number, I brought forth from the midst of them, and allotted as spoil. As for himself, like a caged bird in Jerusalem his capital city, I shut him up. Forts against him I constructed, and any who would go out the city gate I caused to turn back....Fear of the luster of my sovereignty overwhelmed him...Thirty talents of gold and eight hundred talents of silver,...great stores of lapis lazuli, couches of ivory,...an immense treasure,...to Nineveh my capital I made him bring; and for the rendering of tribute and making homage, he sent his ambassador."

This was the condition of affairs at the juncture represented in our lesson. Sennacherib's army had [R3582 : page 190] prospered greatly, and Hezekiah at Jerusalem realized himself powerless to oppose such an army. The inhabitants awaited in dread the storming of the capital city, with prospects of a siege, famine, etc., for Jerusalem, being hilly and fortified, was prepared to stand a siege for some little time. In great haste King Hezekiah made up a large sum of money, estimated at about $600,000, or, in proportion to the purchasing value of the present day, the equivalent of about 6,000,000 dollars in gold and in silver. This was sent to Sennacherib at Lachish as tribute money, hoping thereby to turn aside the king's wrath and to restore the conditions of peace, and to at least save the capital and the remainder of the nation. Sennacherib took the money, but slacked not to make preparation for the utter destruction of the whole country, purposing, we are informed, the carrying away captive of all the people. The coming of the Jewish representatives with this treasure money to Assyria was represented in bas-relief on the walls of his palace at Nineveh, and this portion was cut out and transferred to and is on exhibition at the British Museum. It is interesting to note the complete harmony between these records and those of the Scriptures. The Bible, we hold, is the reliable history of the world, preserved to us by divine power; but it is pleasant to have such corroboration from other sources.

Although the present was sent to Sennacherib at Lachish, that city stood a siege, and Sennacherib himself remained with the army besieging it while he sent three of his chief generals and some of his principal warriors and paraphernalia to Jerusalem to accomplish its captivity. Realizing that the city could stand a considerable siege, and desiring to hasten matters, especially as there were rumors of an Egyptian army coming against Assyria, these generals attempted by intimidation, boasts, etc., to terrorize the people of Jerusalem, so that a sedition would be formed within the walls and overcome the king and his faithful and open the gates to the invaders, hoping thereby to be spared from the terrors of a siege, and from perhaps severer treatment at the hands of the captors if the city required to be taken by force of arms.

They did not in those days have rifles or cannon, but came to close quarters using arrows, spears, etc. Many of the people of Israel gathered upon the wall, some of them no doubt soldiers armed with bows and arrows, spears, etc., to defend the walls, but in the presence of so mighty an army there was evidently a fear to attempt to arouse its ire. The generals of Sennacherib took advantage of the situation, and sought to impress upon the soldiers and others within their hearing the uselessness of such destruction of life as would be involved in a siege, and assured them that other nations round about had succumbed, and that it would be foolish to think that they could withstand so mighty an army, so great a general. They pointed out the fact that other nations had gods in whom they trusted also, but that none of these were able to deliver them, and that the people of Judah should not be deceived and be persuaded by Hezekiah that they had the slightest hope of deliverance, nor should they believe that their God could accomplish more for them than the gods of other nations mightier than they. The Hebrew language was used, in order that the people might understand the proposition, and undoubtedly a great influence was effected; yet the people remained calm and obedient to their king, to whom Sennacherib's representative sent a letter expressing the same sentiments – their hope that he was a man of sense and reason, who would not jeopardize the kingdom and his own life also by trusting in foolish hopes, railing also at Jehovah the God of Israel as being no mightier, but less mighty, than the gods of the greater nations already conquered.

OPPOSITION AWAKENS FAITH

Hezekiah had undoubtedly come to deprecate his course in ignoring the advice of Isaiah in respect to the tribute. He was thoroughly humbled now, and the more he heard of the opposition of his enemies to the Lord the more sure he seems to have felt that God would take vengeance upon those who thus railed at him, and so we read, "And for this cause Hezekiah and the prophet Isaiah cried to heaven." Their faith grew stronger the more the false gods were brought into contrast with the true.

And is not this true with all of the Lord's people today? While we are in very different circumstances every way as members of the Royal Priesthood, Spiritual Israel, nevertheless it is true that our faith is sometimes helped to shine the more brightly when it is brought into sharp contrast with the errors and falsities around us. This is the right effect of love and faith toward God, which cast out fear and enable us the more earnestly to lay hold upon the exceeding great and precious promises of the Lord. The extremity of Hezekiah and his people became God's opportunity. The blasphemy against God and the comparing him with the gods of the nations became the opportunity for the Lord to show to the contrary, to avenge his own, to deliver his people. In answer to that faith and prayer, yet in full accord with his own foreknown plans, the Lord sent his angel and cut off in death the mighty ones of the [R3582 : page 191] army of Assyria, so that he returned to his own land with shame. We are not told in what manner this was accomplished – here is one of the peculiarities of some parts of the divine Word, so much is told in so few words. We do not need to think that an angel of the Lord went about through the camp of the Assyrians and smote all the chief men of the army and demoralized it. We may on the contrary very properly remember that the Lord could use as his angel or messenger a flame of fire, a stroke of lightning or a breath of pestilence. The important thing is to recognize that the Lord did it and that it was in answer to prayer. This account of Sennacherib's terrible defeat is not confined merely to the Bible account, which says (2 Kings 19:35) that of officers and the bravest of the troops 185,000 perished, the remnant fleeing in wild disorder. Geikie remarks that the hills over which the Assyrians fled received the name of the "mountains of prey," so great was the disaster and so great the spoil left in the hands of the Jews. The poet Byron has given a vivid picture of this Assyrian defeat, from which we cull the following:

"The Assyrian came down like the wolf on the fold,
And his cohorts were gleaming in purple and gold.

*                         *                         *
Like the leaves of the forest when summer is green
That host with their banners at sunset were seen.
Like the leaves of the forest when autumn hath blown,
That host on the morrow lay withered and strown.
For the angel of death spread his wings on the blast,
And breathed in the face of the foe as he passed.
And the tents were all silent, the banners alone,
The lances uplifted, the trumpets unblown,
And the might of the Gentile, unsmote by the sword,
Has melted like snow in the glance of the Lord."

Sennacherib later on was slain in the house of his god by two of his sons, as is recorded in a vailed form in this lesson. Thus did the Lord bring eventually a blessing to Hezekiah and the Jewish nation because of their faithfulness to him, at the same time permitting a chastisement because of temporary neglect of his commands. The Lord's victory doubtless became known as that of Hezekiah, and as a consequence he was honored in the sight of all the nations henceforth.

What a lesson is here for all of the Lord's people of Spiritual Israel to-day! When our proudest, strongest foes seem triumphing over us the most, when they are loudest in their denunciations of the Lord and his promises, is the very time when we should lay hold on the Lord's promises with the greatest confidence. Indeed we give it as our experience that those who are most thoroughly rooted and grounded, whose hopes are most surely anchored within the vail, are those who have been attested through very trying experiences, and have had occasion to call mightily upon the Lord for help, when there was no earthly arm to lean upon. How many have found that the breaking of earthly ties has meant the strengthening of the heavenly ones, that the opposition of the world and the Adversary has meant increase of spiritual favor, because, "Greater is he that is for us than all they that be against us."

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A NEWSPAPER VIEW OF THE WELSH REVIVAL.
Dear Brother Russell: –

Enclosed find a newspaper clipping that may interest you. It is from the March "Review of Reviews," and throws a little clearer light than anything I have yet seen on the "Great Welsh Revival." The statement that it is more a movement toward community reform than individual regeneration, is in line with the wholesale methods of the "New Christianity." The emotionalism which characterizes the movement is, it seems to me, indicative of Satanic influence rather than of that of Holy Spirit, which is peaceable and sane and quiet. Satan's effort among those who are reaching out after truth and godliness at this time, is not, apparently to openly thwart and oppose, but to mislead – to carry to an excess of emotion where reason is lost sight of. That this is being accomplished by this movement is evident – and not only among those directly concerned, but throughout nominal Christianity – whose members are pointing to this as an evidence that "the Holy Spirit" is still working in "the churches." Jeremiah foretells (2:35) "Yet thou saidst, I am innocent; surely his anger is turned away from me! – Behold, I will enter into judgment with thee, because thou sayest 'I have not sinned!'"

If I am uncharitable, I want to be corrected – if right in above view, I thought the clipping might strengthen the faith of some (as it has mine) regarding something hard to understand – the apparent success of some nominal church movements – and so submit it to you for use as you see fit.

With Christian love to yourself and all the Bible House friends, I remain,

Yours in the King's service,
HORACE E. HOLLISTER.

SOME RESULTS OF THE WELSH REVIVAL

The weekly edition of the Times, of London, finds the whole movement finely characteristic of the Welsh people, with their emotional temperament, love for music and oratory, and warm-hearted impulsive lives. Summing up his impressions of the results of the revival, the writer in question says:

Suppose we first hear the critic. "Remember," he tells you, – and I well remember, – "the revival of 1858-59. It was as great in fire and extent as this. The chief figure in that revival himself soon lapsed into an unbroken callousness, and his name was not held in honor, while in Cardiganshire, the cradle and center of the movement, a few months revealed a trail of immorality left by the revival, and showed how closely kin are sympathy and sensuality, emotion and lust. Then, as now, the excitement threw many off their balance, and condemned them to end their days in rayless mania. The net result was bad – the people, strung up by an untrustworthy fanaticism, soon fell back into an immovable indifference, and dissent itself was left enfeebled and palsied." Such criticism is in the air. There is some truth, but not all the truth, in such an estimate of the revival, and those who know intimately the mining valleys of South Wales, and, alas, the squalid, brutal lives of many of the toilers, must be profoundly thankful for any influence that can awaken and startle them to the thought and the hope of better things. The weariness of well-doing is the strain under which so many fail. That strain is increased by the unwisdom that confounds innocent amusement with wrongdoing, and regards football and lying as equally heinous. The revival does give an impulse to better things. If its influence wanes and fails, it will be for the lack of that sustained nurture and spiritual discipline which are essential to moral growth. But in spite of all the inevitable failures and lapses, a revival which makes men sunk in ignorance and depravity feel even for one short week the spell and power of a noble ideal cannot and must not be condemned.

The Saturday Review says of it: –

It is clear that a religious conception directs the present movement to which the men of the earlier revivals were strangers. Their minds were fixed on the idea of individual conversion. They rushed to the chapels and field preachings to hang on the lips of a great orator who proclaimed salvation. In the movement of to-day the underlying idea seems to be the public confession of sin, and the salvation not so much of the individual as of the community. In a word this remarkable revival is a protest against an individualistic and sectarian conception of religion, and a struggle to return to a corporate and positive Christianity.