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March 15th
Herald of Christ's Presence

Other foundation can
no man lay

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

VOL. XXVI.MARCH 1, 1905.No. 5
The Great Delusion of our Day 67
The Absurdity of Evolution 67
Selfishness in all Men 68
Moral Progress Opposes "Natural Selection" 69
Viewed from the Watch Tower 71
"Watch Ye! Stand Fast in the Faith." 72
Berean Studies Now Proposed 72
"Once I was Blind, Now I See." 73
"Anoint Thine Eyes with Eye-Salve." 74
How Hindrances May Assist Us 75
"The Hidden Cross" (Poem) 76
The General Purpose of God's Message 76
Ignorance Not a Savior 77
Encouraging Letters from Foreign Fields 78

'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.

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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, 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.

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.

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T would be but human if this age were a trifle supercilious, not to say deluded, concerning its own powers. Great things have been said of it, nor can it be denied that it has fallen heir to great things. At least it has enjoyed and tested beyond all other ages the fruit of the tree of knowledge. "It is an epoch," says John Fiske, "the grandeur of which dwarfs all others that can be named since the beginning of the historic period, if not since man first became distinctively human. In their mental habits, in their methods of inquiry, and in the data at their command, the men of the present day who have fully kept pace with the scientific movement are separated from the men whose education ended in eighteen hundred and thirty by an immeasurably wider gulf than has ever before divided one progressive generation of men from their predecessors. The intellectual development of the human race has been suddenly, almost abruptly, raised to a higher plane than that upon which it had proceeded from the days of the primitive troglodyte to the days of our great-grandfathers."

This statement is so far true that it is dangerous. Doubtless there are a great many people, possibly a majority of so-called educated men, who would, without considering the limitations of scientific knowledge, accept these words literally, who have formed the habit of thinking that the light which we possess to-day is, compared with that possessed by Luther or George Washington or Socrates, as sunlight to starlight. Their view is not only that we know infinitely more than George Washington knew, but that we alone possess the final criteria of knowledge. Socrates and Washington knew a good deal, but they knew vaguely; they could not distinguish accurately between fact and delusion. Our supreme advantage is supposed to be not only that we know, but that we know we know.

This egotistic cast or vogue of thought envelops the mind of the age. It is more authoritative than Kaiser or Pope, than dogma or creed. It percolates through all classes, it penetrates our literature, it colors our judgment. It predetermines our view, shapes the outline of our facts, and is interwoven with the texture of our thought. In a considerable proportion of our typical men it has bred a sense of supreme judicial qualification. In the presence of a magisterial equipment so vast and complete, men of previous ages appear dwarfed; their efforts seem infantile. Even Jesus appears to grope. Our Scientific Judiciary does indeed reverence the purity of his spirit; but when it comes to his authority, or his views about God, they tenderly but firmly put him out of court.


Now this sovereign attitude of the human mind has in the course of history proved intoxicating, and therefore perilous. There was a man once who said, "Is not this great Babylon, that I have built?" Too much magistracy had begun to impair the finer workings of his mind. His next step was to eat straw like an ox. He lost sight somehow of organic relations. This suggests a vital question. Does our age actually possess the equipment for a magisterial attitude? Let us apply a test: Let us take those writers who most thoroughly represent the magisterial attitude of our times; let us see what light they throw on the social problem, what that radiance is which has caused the glory of Socrates and of Jesus to grow pale, and has made the intellectual distance between Washington and ourselves so vast that we can hardly see him. I quote from an article by Brooks Adams in the Atlantic Monthly for last November:


"From the humblest peasant to the mightiest empire humanity is waging a ceaseless and pitiless struggle for existence in which the unfit perish. This struggle is maintained with every weapon and by every artifice, and success is attained not only by endurance and sagacity, but by cunning and ferocity. Chief, however, among the faculties which have given superiority, must rank the martial quality, for history teaches us that nothing can compensate a community for defeat in battle. War is competition in its fiercest form." "Human destiny has been wrought out through war." "The [R3514 : page 68] first settlers slew the Indians, or were themselves slain. ...To consolidate an homogeneous empire we crushed the social system of the South, and lastly we cast forth Spain. The story is written in blood, and common sense teaches us that as the past has been, so will be the future."

Applying this pitiless principle to our commercial relations, Mr. Adams argues that our only salvation is to maintain it to the bitter end. There is no hope of improvement; the human organism must fight or die. "The evolution of human society, like that of the brute, must be along lines of pitiless warfare." Notice in this quotation what the light of to-day is, according to Mr. Adams; it is the doctrine of Natural Selection. By its "pure white light" he discerns without any illusions the pathway of society. "Human destiny has been wrought out through war." "Dreams of peace have always allured mankind to their undoing." "Nature has decreed that animals shall compete for life, in other words, destroy [R3515 : page 68] or be destroyed. We can hope for no exemption from the common lot." Surely nothing could be more logical than this.

It ought to come with a shock to those who have never thought out in their own minds the unlimited application of this modern scientific theory to human life. It has been said by the highest authority, "Natural Selection works through death." As Mr. Adams has put it, war is Nature's decree, not human brotherhood. The latter, alas, is an illusion, a tradition handed down from the vague and inconsequential ages. Nature's real decree for mankind is war to the knife.


In a powerfully written article by Mr. London on the "Scab," the same view is maintained. I quote the following: –

"In a competitive society, where men struggle with one another for food and shelter, what is more natural than that generosity, when it diminishes the food and shelter of men other than he who is generous, should be held an accursed thing?...To strike at a man's food and shelter is to strike at his life, and in a society organized on a tooth-and-nail basis, such an act, performed though it may be under the guise of generosity, is none the less menacing and terrible.

"It is for this reason that a laborer is so fiercely hostile to another laborer who offers to work for less pay or longer hours....

"Thus, the generous laborer, giving more of a day's work for less return,...threatens the life of his less generous brother laborer, and, at the best, if he does not destroy that life, he diminishes it. Whereupon the less generous laborer looks upon him as an enemy, and, as men are inclined to do in a tooth-and-nail society, he tries to kill the man who is trying to kill him.

"When a striker kills with a brick the man who has taken his place, he has no sense of wrong-doing. In the deepest holds of his being, though he does not reason the impulse, he has an ethical sanction. He feels dimly that he has justification, just as the home-defending Boer felt, though more sharply, with each bullet he fired at the invading English. Behind every brick thrown by a striker is the selfish 'will to live' of himself and the slightly altruistic will to live of his family. The family-group came into the world before the state-group, and society being still on the primitive basis of tooth and nail, the will to live of the state is not so compelling to the striker as the will to live of his family and himself."

Mr. London scientifically clears up the moral character of the Scab, generously including most of us in his diagnosis. He shows that, however we may appear to the casual observer, we are all Scabs by turn, and that, though outwardly we often seem to be generous, we are really true at heart to the principle of Natural Selection. Concerning each one of us, he remarks, "He does not scab because he wants to scab. No whim of the spirit, no burgeoning of the heart, leads him to give more of his labor-power than they for a certain sum.

"It is because he cannot get work on the same terms as they that he is a Scab....Nobody desires to scab, to give most for least. The ambition of every individual is quite the opposite."

I pass over the argument by which Mr. London goes on to show that everybody, except King Edward and a few people whom hereditary advantage has rescued from the real struggle of life, is at times a Scab, – the laborer, the capitalist, the merchant, the minister of the gospel, the American nation, the English nation, – in short, every human organism which is in this competitive warfare plays by turn the part of Scab, according as the strategy of its situation requires. We work for less pay to get control of the situation, but having once got control of the situation we use it to crush the Scab, reduce competition, and secure larger returns.


I have quoted these two writers because they are representative. Not only have they carefully studied the organization of society, but they clearly reflect the illumination of that philosophy which, more than any other, is the distinguishing and magisterial equipment of our day. It is by light of "Evolution" that we feel qualified to test the Bible, Christianity, and, in fact, every human belief or moral position. For Evolution is to the popular scientific mind so absolutely established as to seem approximately identical with the cosmos itself. It is therefore a final and authoritative test.

It is evident at a glance that both these writers have studied our social problems by the light of Natural Selection, and that this is to their minds the only light worth considering. This fact classifies them as distinctively men of the type referred to by John Fiske. They are, according to him, separated from the men whose education ended in eighteen hundred and thirty by an immensely wider gulf than has ever before divided one progressive generation of men from their predecessors. For Natural Selection is the authoritative type of Evolution so far as living organisms are concerned, and Evolution is our distinctive magisterial equipment. Scientific observation existed before our time, but it is our peculiar glory [?] to have discovered the scientific philosophy which appears to coordinate, account for, and interpret all known facts, past and present, and which has therefore suggested the idea of an apparently absolute yet purely intellectual criterion of truth and test of reality.

Moreover, these writers are consistent: they follow their logic to the bitter end. They do not mix things up. Natural Selection, which works through death, figures in their scheme as the sole law of human development. It is Nature's decree. "Dreams of peace are an illusion." – "Human destiny has been wrought out [R3515 : page 69] through blood." – "Common sense teaches us that as has been the past so will be the future." – That condemns the Hague Tribunal to the Limbo of hopeless phantasms. It exposes the folly of our modern attempts to mitigate the ferocity of war. We are but trifling with an irresistible force; ferocity and murderous cunning are always Nature's tools, by which she shapes not only our physical but our ethical manhood.

This, then, is the way in which the magisterial doctrine solves our social problems, and this is the present social status of the age which has basked in its light, which "has been suddenly, almost abruptly, raised to a higher plane than that upon which the race had proceeded from the days of the primitive troglodyte to the days of our great-grandfathers."

Let us take account of stock. We have society actually organized to-day on a primitive tooth-and-nail basis. "From the humblest peasant to the mightiest empire humanity is waging a ceaseless and pitiless struggle for existence, in which the unfit perish," a struggle in which "success is attained not only by endurance and sagacity, but by cunning and ferocity." In fact, we are, according to Mr. London's article, already passing some important milestones on the backward road toward the moral status of the primitive troglodyte. "When a striker kills with a brick the man who has taken his place, he has no sense of wrong-doing....He has an ethical sanction....The family-group came into the world before the state-group, and society being still on the primitive basis of tooth and nail, the will to live of the state is not so compelling to the striker as the will to live of his family and himself."


Now, as Mr. Adams would say, common sense teaches us whither this points. If the family-group existed before the state-group, then family needs existed before state or religious ordinances. "Thou shalt not steal." "Thou shalt not kill." What are these belated requirements of social convention compared to the necessities of the family development! If a brother clergyman draws away your congregation, reduces your salary, and so compels your children to go barefoot, why not knock him on the head! This is troglodytism, if the present writer understands the word, and he thinks that he does. It solves the social question by disintegrating society, and the singular fact is that Natural Selection, which is supposed to be the principle operating in moral development, which is, in fact, identical with the cosmic order, should have led us back in a kind of blind-man's waltz, till we have, according to these writers, actually reached the primitive tooth-and-nail basis, from which, according to modern science, we started hundreds of thousands of years ago; and have reached the lowest point thus far under the guidance of an age whose intellectual grandeur dwarfs all others [?].

No doubt every optimist in the country will declare that this is a stalwart misrepresentation of the present facts; but if a sober-minded man considers the present aspect of the labor question, the political situation in New York, Chicago, St. Louis, and our other great cities, the enormous development of graft, the thievish character of our new methods of finance, the fact that the small investor is to-day, like the man of scriptural times who traveled between Jerusalem and Jericho, sure to fall among thieves unless personally conducted; if he reflects on the Standard Oil operations and the Turkish situation and the impotency of our modern civilization to put a stop to lynching, or to prevent such a fearful catastrophe as war between Japan and Russia, he is forced to confess that there is, after all, too much truth in this dark picture, and that our conduct is quite often on the tooth-and-nail basis.


But there is nothing new about this; it is the old story of a wicked world which always moves in a circle, which needs salvation, which cannot save itself because it cannot make steady moral advancement, which builds empires only that they may perish under the weight [R3516 : page 69] of their corruption. It is the old humanum est errare, out of which grew that conviction of sin, that cry to Heaven for help, which since the time of the Vedas has echoed out of every quarter of the globe, from the heart of burdened humanity. The Troglodyte we have always with us; like the Wandering Jew, he never dies. His characteristics are always the same; he takes a few steps forward, and then turns back toward the tiger and the ape. But he never becomes either tiger or ape. He becomes what we call a fiend, or, in modern day parlance, a degenerate. He is always arguing plausibly for the tooth-and-nail ethics, always ignoring its limitations, always confounding the lines at which a higher principle should take control. He is always putting the struggle for a livelihood before honor and right.

How many there are of him we never know, though we always try to find out before election day. Often he lives in high places, and very often he succeeds in organizing society. He always controls a great many votes. He has a kind of primitive logic which takes hold of men with a sort of cosmic force. Behind him is the stern fact that man has an animal nature, that this animal nature is without doubt engaged in a severe struggle for physical existence, that Natural Selection, like gravitation, really has a grip on him. In short, it is the old story of the world, the flesh, and the devil, apparently, though not really, backed up by the cosmos itself.

It is the same world which Socrates faced, and Jesus and Paul. Righteous men have faced it in all ages and feared not. Often it has quailed before their rebuke. It has recognized an authority higher than intellect, greater than that of physical nature, and has cried out, "We have sinned!" The only difference in our own time is that we have noble-hearted and high-minded men, not at all troglodytes as to their personal conduct or ideals, who, writing with the magisterial authority vaguely supposed to be possessed by our modern science, deliberately acquit the wicked world. True, it is cruel, it is brutal; they would be ashamed, as high-minded gentlemen, to act on such principles; yet they declare with the finality of absolute truth that the world cannot act otherwise; it is simply carrying out Nature's decree.

The peculiar feature, then, of our times is, not that the world is on a primitive tooth-and-nail basis, but that it stands acquitted, nay, justified, by a verdict apparently based upon the doctrine of Evolution, and that conscience is discredited and put out of court by the apparent authority of those standards which have given us a supreme and magisterial position among the ages. The Troglodyte now has an unassailable backer in the scholar who sits on a judgment seat higher than that of Moses, and who says to the world, "You have no grounds for [R3516 : page 70] crying, 'peccavi:' you have not sinned; you are doing just right; you are debtor to the flesh to live after the flesh. It is Nature's decree, not that you should be a brother to your neighbor, but that you should rob him and fight him for a livelihood."

Words would fail to tell how, from the time when Darwin's and Spencer's philosophies were published, this magisterial tendency has proceeded to assist the Troglodyte in cheapening character, by its judicial decisions based on the evolutionary hypothesis. It has not only enabled our primitive friend to throw bricks with greater cheerfulness, but it has made his creed impregnable; nay, it has enabled him to make all other creeds look foolish.

The Troglodyte always believed that preachers of righteousness retained the claw-foot under their shoes and stockings. He knew that prophets and apostles only waited for a chance to show their teeth. His intuition told him that generous people were really scabbing when they went about doing good. He saw by a kind of cosmic light that those great ideals upon which our higher morality fed were silly dreams. His reason told him that the power which makes for righteousness was a sun-god, or a highly developed form of ghost worship, or a fetish, due to the effect of environment. He always understood that the moral nature itself was a product of circumstances without the least atom of final authority, a kind of vermiform appendix which were best removed, since its place has been superseded by the exact knowledge of the cosmic law. Why should a man longer be punched by conscience when he has risen to an understanding of Nature's decree? What do we want of morals when reason has become supreme?

All this the Troglodyte knew in his heart, but he was a little shy of telling it because the stalwart moralists had the ear of public opinion. Now, behold a Daniel come to judgment, who has not only confirmed his suspicions, proved his creed, and made him a prophet of the cosmos, but has made the stalwart moralists themselves give up the validity of their moral perceptions, while they try to explain that their opinions were really based on Evolution.

The scientific moralists are thinking their case over; many of them are still trying to patch it up with Evolution. They have not yet dreamed of falling back upon the validity of the moral perception itself. And there are a great many people who want to be good, but have lost faith in their moral ideals, and are humbly looking to the scientists and the philosophers for their moral nutriment. As to the prophets and apostles, their voice is still and small in the ear of a moral nature whose main study is to supply practical ethics enough to make business prosperous and the governing party secure.


Now Mr. Huxley long ago discovered the blunder that had been made in applying the theory of Natural Selection to Social Evolution. He saw that the cosmic light had failed at this point, and he introduced a variation as follows: "There is another fallacy which seems to me to pervade the so-called 'Ethics of Evolution.' It is the notion that, because, on the whole, animals and plants have advanced in perfection of organization by means of the struggle for existence and the consequent survival of the fittest, therefore men in society, men as ethical beings, must look to the same process to help them toward perfection. Social progress means a checking of the cosmic process at every step, and the substitution for it of another which may be called the ethical process. What we call goodness or virtue involves a course of conduct which in all respects is opposed to that which leads to success in the cosmic struggle for existence.

"In place of ruthless self-assertion it demands self-restraint; in place of thrusting aside or treading down all competitors it requires that the individual shall not merely respect, but shall help his fellows. Its influence is directed not so much to the survival of the fittest, as to the fitting of as many as possible to survive. It repudiates what we call the gladiatorial theory of existence. Laws and moral precepts are directed to the end of curbing the cosmic process and reminding the individual of his duty to the community, to the protection and interest of which he owes, if not existence itself, at least the life of something better than a brutal savage."

Mr. Huxley made this discovery just as any one of us might, by a simple common-sense observation of human nature as it works practically. He did not, however, sympathetically observe all the phenomena involved, and he excluded some of them for this reason. So that his theory of Social Evolution never could claim magisterial authority, simply because it is incomplete. It is no doubt a profound discovery that the altruistic principle conserves and builds up human society, while antagonism disintegrates it; that love conquers, overrules, and fructifies the lower competitive forces, as animal life conquers, overrules, and fructifies chemical affinity or gravitation in organic development.

But it was not original with Mr. Huxley; thousands of people had seen and applied it before he was born. Jesus was the real discoverer [revealer]; He first mastered the social or ethical principle. He found it to be universal good neighborhood or brotherhood, traced it to its source in God's fatherhood, flooded it with Divine affection, put it into his own self-sacrificing life, and showed us how we might practically attain to it through his help. Since then the idea has been symbolized by the Cross of Christ, and has for eighteen centuries been regarded as the Christian solution, – though Christendom has too often been antagonistic to it.

Mr. Huxley asserted that this ethical process must be substituted for the cosmic process. Jesus and Paul declared it to be the supreme force in the cosmic process itself. Mr. Huxley's trouble was that he, too, fell under the great delusion of fancying that this philosophic form of truth was the final and ultimate one, and, therefore, he identified Natural Selection with the cosmic process itself; but when he followed his new light he lost his magisterial authority over the high church evolutionists; and they are, to-day, barking at the same old tree up which they suppose their truth has climbed, though it has gone out of sight.


But, whichever theory is correct, could there be a greater delusion than this sense of magistracy? Have we anything to back it up? Have we any theory on any subject which is universally accepted or can be reckoned as a final and absolute form of knowledge? Philosophy is surely an enormous help to both intellectual and moral perception, but is it possible to have a philosophy that can take the place of perception? And if it were possible, what would become of perception, and of individuality, [R3517 : page 71] and of genius, and of inventive discovery under such a predetermining influence? I would not be understood for a moment as holding these writers whom I have quoted as responsible for this tendency. We are all infected. We all take turns at it. Let us say that it is the Zeitgeist that has done it, and shake hands all around.

It was Count Ito who said that when he was preparing the Japanese Constitution he tried to think how Buddha would look at the matter, and he added, "I think that I did succeed fairly well in getting into his skin." It might be worth while if some of us would occasionally try to get outside the epidermis of our so-called modern thought, and take a straight look at the age from an exterior point of view; it need not be so far off as Buddha, but sufficiently remote to afford a good perspective. It is quite possible that from such a clear, cool height of vision our generation might seem to be, like Nebuchadnezzar, a little touched in the head.

I have selected these writers because they are strictly logical, and, unlike some of us, they do not straddle. They take the most authoritative type of Evolution, the one which most deserves to be regarded as Nature's decree, the one which Mr. Huxley styles the cosmic process, the only type of philosophy which could at the present day by any possibility be exalted to the rank of a final standard, and they think it out to the bitter end. If we have any clear cosmic torch, this is the one. They hold it high and wave it wide. By its illumination we see the column of humanity with reversed arms turning its back on all the great ideals toward which it has crawled upward in the space of a hundred thousand years or so, cheapening the moral nature, and marching back without conviction of sin toward the original homunculus. This is a dark picture, certainly.

True, if we remove this cosmic torch things do not look so dark. There are at least as many people to-day as ever working for the interests of righteousness and peace and human brotherhood. They make fewer practical blunders, they keep the issues clearer, they utilize the results of science, they bring to the task a broader scientific knowledge, a profounder sympathy for human conditions, a greater willingness to look at all sides. Witness President Eliot's noble contribution to a better understanding between labor and capital. These people are putting up a stout fight for the moral nature, and they meet with much success among the plain folk. They vitalize character, for the moral nature feeds upon revelations and ideals as the body feeds upon bread.


But the great difficulty with these people is that they are all fools. This does not mean that they are obliged to have guardians appointed over them; in reality, many of them are guardians of the commonwealth or community to which they belong. They are not dull in practical affairs; their foolishness consists in the fact that all their high ideals and inspirations rest upon a so-called semi-mythical or subliminal basis which they cannot prove before this infallible tribunal that has endorsed our friend the Troglodyte. They cannot make their articles of faith square with any specific type of evolutionary doctrine, or prove their revelations to the latest type of scholarship. Our magisterial authorities are withholding a verdict on their case until the Society of Psychical Research has finished its investigations.

This lack of intellectual status gives them a phantasmal appearance, which probably caused Mr. London and Mr. Adams to overlook them altogether. Indeed, one frequently hears in intellectual circles the statement that no one to-day believes in such articles of faith. But it is the fools who bring practical light to the social question.

*                         *                         *

We devote considerable space to the foregoing because it treats an important subject from a standpoint with which we agree, – although it differs from our own in that it ignores the divine revelation on which we build everything. We added sub-headings to assist the elucidations. From the Scripture standpoint alone is this subject perfectly clear. From God himself we get "the white light" of absolute truth on these matters. From this our standpoint all is much more plain. Ours is the true "magisterial" or decisive view which alone can speak with authority and silence criticism. "Let God be true though it make every man a liar."

The fall of our race from the divine likeness, through disobedience explains why all men have a basis for moral sense and higher attainments, which for a time have been dwarfed by the over-cultivation of the selfish propensities. The tendency of Sin is ever downward, its offspring is Death, its Husband is Selfishness. Righteousness has for her husband Love, and the offspring by divine arrangement is Life-everlasting.

Many are the voices and influences favoring degeneracy through Sin, appealing to the powerful selfish desires. One voice from on high appeals for righteousness to our higher qualities of mind, weak and impaired by the fall and atrophied through lack of exercise.

The great appeal of the Law Covenant was made only to the Jewish nation, and its influence was beneficial not to the Hebrews only, but also to neighboring nations who took knowledge of Israel's hopes and aims. Other appeals were through the Prophets to Israel, and they too were partially effective. But the great appeal of God to men was made in due time through his Son, The Voice from Heaven. The message was not merely a law showing our woe-begone condition, but additionally it spoke peace with God, the forgiveness of sins, through our Lord's great sacrifice for our sins. This was God's true voice or message of love and mercy.


But alas, only a few hear at all, and still fewer hear the voice distinctly. The ears of moral and religious perception are dulled by the fall, and additionally by the confusing din of selfishness and necessity aggravated by the god of this world. Those who hear also see things invisible to others, – see with the eye of faith. The opening of the eyes of their understanding comes to them as a result of their hearing and accepting the Voice and being begotten again to a newness of life. These are "the very elect," now being called and prepared for the Kingdom honors and services.

From these "elect" even now radiates an influence which affects many favorably – many who see not the heavenly vision open to the "elect" and who hear not the voice from heaven. These are the civilized whose [R3517 : page 72] moral perceptions are quickened, and amongst whom arise many of the moral reformers who battle nobly against the degenerate conditions common to the entire race.

Shortly, as soon as "the very elect," the Church, the "Bride" of Christ, shall have been selected and prepared by the trials and disciplines of this present evil world, and been glorified and united to her Lord, the Redeemer, – then the next great step in the divine program for the uplift of the world will begin. Then, for the thousand years of Christ's Messianic reign, He and his "elect" bride will bless the world of mankind by restraining Satan and every form of sin, and by inculcating Righteousness and uplifting to the lost image of God all who then, knowing righteousness, shall will to follow its dictates.


Meantime, however, the Lord's plan is seen clearly only by the "elect." The worldly wise, although benefited by its influences, wander into labyrinths of their own confusing notions, and attribute the progress in the world not to the voice from heaven but to Evolutionary progress. Framing a theory accordingly, they are ignoring the work of God's grace and claiming "the survival of the fittest." The foregoing article explodes again the error of this theory – criticising it from its own level of human reason.

A little while, – a very little while – and the world will witness an exemplification of its God-ignoring theory, when Anarchy will prevail and anarchists will claim that they are the "fittest" type of the human family. Ah! that will be a rude shock to these philosophers and their dreams. Thank God for his Word instructing us that he has so timed matters that at that very juncture the "elect" will be glorified and take the control of earth's affairs – at the very point where otherwise selfishness would so run riot that "no flesh would be saved."

[R3517 : page 72]

OR some time past we have been receiving letters inquiring how little gatherings of the Lord's people can use the hour of their Sunday gatherings most profitably. Some of these letters are from brethren chosen as Elders or leaders, saying that they are quite incapable of getting up a "sermon" and find it impossible to prepare even a Bible Study in an attractive and interesting form, though the dear brethren, full of love for the Truth, do not complain, but rather encourage them.

Other letters are from those who take no public part and who, while sympathizing with their meeting-leaders in their endeavors to imitate nominal church purveyors, are wishing and praying for the opening of some "door" of help which will make the "assembling of themselves" more profitable to all.

It was in response to this "cry" of the Lord's people that we prepared the WATCH TOWER Bible, in the margins of which, in addition to the Scripture references, we gave DAWN and TOWER references. In the [R3518 : page 72] front of that Bible, which so many of you possess, we gave some suggestions on "Berean Bible Study," and in the back part we gave extended references and also a Topical Index. It was our hope that these would meet the requirements, but we find that they do not. Many of the Lord's earnest ones have so long been used to "swallowing" whatever was offered them as spiritual nutriment that they had never learned how to feed themselves at the Father's table. Others who knew how to get at the food properly found their time so consumed in the "things needful" and pressing that they had little time to prepare lessons of a profitable kind for themselves or others, even after the matter had been outlined as in the Topical Index.


Appreciating the needs, we requested some of the "Pilgrim" brethren to give examples of these Berean Studies at the various places visited. However, even this did not serve the purpose, because the visits of the "Pilgrims" being few and more like those of the apostles of old, the friends begrudged the time of even one service – particularly since it requires several meetings of the Berean type to demonstrate its value and arouse the proper enthusiasm.

Now as meeting all these requirements we are having prepared Outline Lessons for each month of this year, beginning with March. One peculiarity about these lessons is that they do not teach, but merely question, and refer the student to the Scriptures and the WATCH TOWER publications bearing thereon. Thus thought is stimulated and the Truth the more clearly impressed.

The thirty questions of the March Lesson following might serve for thirty Sundays; but having so much good food we can afford to fare sumptuously and take several questions for each meeting. As to how many, would depend somewhat on the number in attendance, and how accustomed they are to analytical study, and how expert the leader of the meeting. It might be well for the classes to appoint several of the seemingly capable brethren to lead in turn, that the most able in this respect might be discerned. These will probably be found amongst those you have already chosen as Elders.

If the class be a small one, of say seven, it might be well to apportion to each one question for the following Sunday. The Elders, for instance, might be requested by vote to make such apportionment of the questions. A week for the examination of the one question should enable each one to bring on the next Sunday thoughts and texts and WATCH TOWER and DAWN quotations that would be helpful, interesting, profitable to all. As all are WATCH TOWER readers assignments can be made by number, thus: Brother A – , question No. 4; Sister H – , No. 5, etc.

Where the class is larger, say twenty to forty, the questions would best be apportioned to seven or eight of the most capable members of the class to present the answers to the questions. In any event, each subject or question should be open to general discussion after [R3518 : page 73] the presentation of the formal reply by the one appointed to that service.

So used the thirty questions below should furnish abundant food for profitable study by the largest classes for nearly or quite a month. Our prayers go with these suggestions, that the result may bring praise and honor to our Lord and strength and victory to his people.


(Following each question are texts of Scripture in reply, then references to page numbers of DAWN and WATCH TOWER giving comments; the first six letters of the alphabet represent the respective DAWN volumes, and the TOWERS are designated by the letter "Z" and the year. The mark par. refers to paragraph in article containing comment.)

1. What is faith? Heb. 11:1; 1 Jno. 5:4; E.125, par. 1; F.689 (1st line).

2. Name the two component elements of faith. Z.'95-134.

3. How does faith differ from credulity? F.689, par. 1.

4. What is the importance of a proper faith? Heb. 11:6; F.315; 693, par. 1; Z.'94-329 (2nd col. par. 1-3).

5. What is the relation between faith and knowledge? Rom. 10:17; A.13, par. 1; A.20, par. 2; A.21, par. 1; Z.'94-329 (1st col. par. 2); Z.'99-3 (2nd col. par. 1).

6. How is faith "the gift of God"? Eph. 2:8; Z.'98-107 (1st col. par. 2); Z.'01-156 (1st col. par. 2,3).

7. Is faith in Christ necessary to salvation? Acts 4:10-12; Jno. 3:16,36; A.102, par. 3; Z.'97-278. (See Topical Index, – "FAITH.")

8. What is the immediate result of faith in Christ during the Gospel Age? Rom. 5:1; A.231, par. 4; Z.'00-188 (1st col. par. 3, and 2nd col. par. 1,2).

9. How is Jesus the "author and finisher of our faith"? Heb. 12:2; Z.'95-147 (1st col. par. 1).

10. Is a simple confession of faith necessary? Rom. 10:10; Z.'00-149, (2nd col.); Z.'00-180 (1st col. par. 5); Z.'02-270 (1st col. par. 1,2,3).

11. Is feeling an essential part of faith? Z.'92-267.

12. Explain the difference between faith as a basis for justification and faith as a fruit of the Spirit. F.688-692.

13. What is "the good fight of faith?" 1 Tim. 6:12; Z.'98-153, 158, (2nd col.)

14. How should we fight the good fight? Z.'95-201,202; Z.'98-158, (1st col. par. 2); Z.'98-159 (2nd col.); Z.'01-72 (2nd col. par. 3).

15. For whom and against whom do we fight? Phil. 2:12; 1 Jno. 3:16; Eph. 6:12; Z.'98-153-155; F.599-658.

16. What does it mean to "walk by faith"? 2 Cor. 5:7; F.631, par. 2,3; Z.'00-57 (1st col.); Z.'95-92,93; F.142, par. 2.

17. Why are trials of faith permitted? Jas. 1:3,4; 1 Pet. 4:12,13; F.642-644; Z.'96-54; Z.'95-134,135.

18. What are some of the present rewards of faith? 1 Cor. 2:9,10; F.689 (par. 2) to 692; F.686, par. 3.

19. What is the future inheritance of faith? 1 Jno. 3:2; Rev. 2:10; F.693,694, F.721 (par. 1,2) to 729.

20. What is the "rest" of faith? Heb. 4:1-11; F.392-394; Z.'95-168,169; Z.'99-253 (1st col. par. 1).

21. Define "full assurance" of faith and hope. Heb. 10:22; 6:11; Z.'00-169, par. 1.

22. How may we attain and retain full assurance of faith? Z.'98-247; E.249,250.

23. What are the hindrances to full assurance of faith? Z.'00-169,170.

24. How may we increase our faith? F.691, par. 2; Z.'96-86 (2nd col. par. 3).

(a) By prayer. Z.'96-162,163.
(b) By study. F.315.
(c) By repeating and claiming the promises of God. Z.'00-170 (1st col. par. 4).
(d) By watching our experiences. Z.'00-170 (2nd col. par. 1,2).

25. Name some features of "present truth" which have increased your faith.

26. What is the relation between faith and works? Jas. 2:14,17,18,22; Z.'00-343 (1st col. par. 1,2); Z.'01-231 (2nd col. par. 2,3).

27. Who constitute the "household of faith"? Gal. 6:10; Z.'00-368, (2nd col.)

28. Explain Jas. 5:14-16. F.631-638.

29. What is the significance of the symbols, shield and anchor, in connection with faith and hope? Eph. 6:16; F.657, par. 5; Heb. 6:19; Z.'02-345 (1st col.)

30. What will be the relation between faith and knowledge in the Millennial Age? Z.'00-238 (2nd col. par. 1,2) to 239; F.106, (par. 3) to 107.

[R3518 : page 73]


JOHN 9:1-11. – MARCH 19.

Golden Text: – "I am the Light of the world."

UR LORD'S miracles and parables touch almost every side of every question when rightly understood. True, our Lord's own explanations of his parables and dark sayings are not elaborate, not deep. He left the elaboration for his disciples under the guidance of the holy Spirit. The reason for this is given in his own words, "I have many things to tell you, but ye cannot bear them now." The reason for their being better able to bear them, understand them and appreciate them later on was because then the work of our Lord's sacrifice having been finished at Calvary, and he having ascended on high, presented the merit of his sacrifice as the atonement price for the sins of his Church, and thus made it possible for them to receive the holy Spirit not previously given unto them – not enjoyed even by the disciples as a begetting Spirit before Pentecost.

One of these partially expounded lessons of our Lord's ministry is found in the lesson before us. A man born blind, a wayside beggar, had drawn the attention of the Lord and the apostles, and his healing and the preparation therefor serve as an opportunity for a far-reaching lesson, only a part of which, however, the [R3519 : page 74] apostles could learn at this time. They had the thought that all the sickness and pain and sorrow in the world was the result of sin. They had this thought properly, because the Scriptures had so indicated, assuring them that if they walked in the Lord's ways they would have blessings of health and prosperity in all of life's affairs for themselves, their families, their flocks and their herds. Properly enough, then, they understood that the various evils witnessed on every hand were in some degree the result of sin, either of the individual or of his ancestors, inherited.


The man blind from his birth started a query in their minds as to the sin which led to the blindness, and being "unlearned and ignorant men" it need not surprise us that they were not very logical in their thoughts nor in the question they asked, "Whether did this man sin or his parents, that he was born blind?" Of course the man himself could not have sinned before he was born; of course, therefore, whatever responsibility there was came to him through inheritance, as the Lord had declared that "I will visit the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generation of those that hate me," those who wilfully violate his laws. True, there was at this time a heathen idea respecting the transmigration of souls, which taught that all humanity had at some previous time lived in some other condition either better or worse than the present one. But it would be extremely unlikely that the apostles, "unlearned," should have any particular knowledge of these theories of the heathen, which were known chiefly to the educated; and as for the Hebrew Scriptures, not a word in them favored such a thought, but the very contrary.

This same heathenish thought still prevails in the far East, India, etc., and has been slightly introduced again in civilized countries under the name of Theosophy. It is one of the main delusions ensnaring the people known as Mormons. The Scriptural teaching is that God created man in Eden, and that all the families of the earth are the posterity of this first man, Adam; and because of this relationship to Adam as their father, and their consequent relationship to his sin and its penalty, death, therefore all in Adam die – his entire race is a dying race. The belief in the ransom settles this doctrine most thoroughly, showing that our Lord's life redeemed the life of father Adam, and thus incidentally redeemed all who lost life through him. "As by man came death, by man also came the resurrection from the dead; as all in Adam die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive." "Of one blood God hath made all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth." – Acts 17:26.

Our Lord's reply, that neither the blind man nor his parents had sinned, is not to be understood as implying that these people were absolutely perfect, sinless, spotless – not to be understood as contradicting the Scriptures which declare, "There is none righteous, no not one; all have sinned and come short of the glory of God." The words simply signified that the blindness of this man was not a penalty for his personal sin or for some special sin of his parents. This need not imply either that God had specially intervened to cause blindness in this case – rather we may suppose that the blindness came through the general weakness of heredity, or by what might be termed the accidents incidental to our present imperfect condition as a race of sinners. A similar expression on our Lord's part was made in respect to those men upon whom the tower of Siloam fell, killing them. Our Lord said, "Suppose ye that these men were sinners above others? I tell you, nay; unless ye shall repent ye shall all likewise perish."

The thought is that the whole world is under condemnation to death. We are a race of convicts, and death conditions are properly, justly permitted to prevail, not interfered with, because the lives of all humanity are forfeited through original sin and disobedience, and through our inheritance of the weaknesses and imperfections and unfitness resulting. All are thus perishing, and had it not been for divine mercy, in providing the Redeemer and the great sacrifice for sins, there would be no hope for any as respects the future life; death to all would signify that they had perished. And even though all the way has been opened for the dying race, nevertheless repentance for sin, acceptance of Christ as the Savior, and obedience to his voice, are necessary to our escape from the sentence of sin – death.

Many will agree with us thus far who would fail to go further along what we believe to be logical, scriptural grounds, namely, that in God's providence not only has his love provided the redemption and the opportunity for blessing to the world, but that the same love and wisdom will ultimately provide that all shall see the great light and hear the voice of him that speaketh from heaven, and thus either accept or reject the favor divine, the life everlasting, on terms of full obedience. We hold that it is in full accord with the entire testimony of Scripture that few now have the ability to see or to hear; that the majority are both blind and deaf to this message in the present time, some completely blind and completely deaf, others partially blind and partially deaf. The glorious assurance of the Lord's Word is that in God's due time all the blind eyes shall be opened and all the deaf ears unstopped.


This was the very lesson which the Lord taught from this incident – taught to the extent that his hearers were able to appreciate it. He declared, "While I am in the world I am the Light of the world; I must work the works of him that sent me while it is day, for the night cometh when no man can work." Then he proceeded to the opening of the blind man's eyes, that the latter might see him as the Light of the world. True, the opening of blind natural eyes could not give sight to the eyes of his understanding, the eyes of the heart; but it could and did figure or illustrate this which was the real essence of our Lord's teachings, of which this miracle was a part. Without in the slightest degree disparaging our Lord's many miracles upon the blind, lame, deaf, etc., we can readily see that these were incidental, and only in a secondary sense his mission.

We can see, too, that while multitudes were healed, still greater multitudes remained unhealed; and that if it had been our Lord's special mission to heal all the lepers and all the blind and all the deaf, and to have awakened all the dead of Palestine, then he failed most signally in accomplishing the work. But that was not the work which he came to do. He came to be the Light of the world in a much larger sense than this. He came [R3519 : page 75] to do the work of him that sent him; and to finish that work and the special feature of it that was then due was the sacrificing of himself, the laying down of his life in the service of his brethren, in the declaration of the good tidings, in the teaching of the people through parables, dark sayings and miracles, which subsequently under the holy Spirit's illumination would guide a certain class to the real seeing, the real understanding and the real fellowship of heart with him and his work and with the Father, that was intended.

It will be at his second advent that our Lord will be "the Light of the world" in the full, glorious sense which the Scriptures everywhere set forth: – "The Sun of Righteousness shall arise with healing in his beams." With the ushering in of that glorious sunlight begins the new day for which we hope and pray, – the "day of Christ." We now reckon the day as beginning at midnight, but God supervised the Jewish reckoning on this subject and under that supervision the day begins in the evening, progressed to midnight and then to the dawning, and by and by to the full light of day. In harmony with this God-given picture of the day we may see that our Lord's ministry was in the eventide which followed the Jewish day, the day of Moses. A little of its light still remained, and in that light the Lord personally, and subsequently through his disciples, established the Gospel Church. He well knew of the dark night that would follow his ministry, in which darkness would cover the earth and gross darkness the heathen.

The Lord's words then signified that he realized the opportunity at hand and did with his might what his hands found to do, what was possible to be done under all the circumstances and conditions prevailing, and with a realization that the night was drawing rapidly upon the Jewish people, and that not only his own work would be cut short soon by his death, but that all opportunities for dealing with the Jews would soon be at an end. The apostles after Pentecost entered fully into the Master's spirit in respect to this shortness of the time, and labored incessantly first with the Jews and only subsequently with the Gentiles, until all the elect had been gathered from the once favored nation, even though these were but a remnant, as the apostle explains. The rest were blinded, went into complete darkness, while the light of divine favor through the Lamp, the Word, was sent amongst the Gentiles to gather out of them also an elect class for membership in the spiritual Israel, for membership in the body of Christ, to be light-bearers under present conditions, through trials and difficulties and oppositions, and, by and by, to be associates with the Lord as members of the glorious Sun of Righteousness, the great Light which in the duly appointed time shall enlighten the whole world.

As we near the morning watches we have the evidence of day drawing on; and as we listen to the voice of the Prophet, we hear him declare in answer to our query, "Watchman, what of the night?" the message, "The morning cometh, but a night also," and then assures us that although we are now in the very dawn of the morning a fierce storm is to break and cause another "night" of darkness and of trouble upon the world and upon Christendom, to sift, to separate, to purify the elect. Our hearts, however, are encouraged with the assurance that with the breaking of that storm will [R3520 : page 75] come the full splendor of the Millennial morning, and with it the Sun of Righteousness blessing and illuminating the world. Moreover, in that time the assurance is that all the blind eyes shall be opened so that the whole world will be able to discern that "The Light of the world is Jesus."


The making of an eye-salve of the dust of a Palestine road, mixed with the saliva of our Lord's mouth, seems rather peculiar at first. We would naturally be inclined to say, "How strange! Do not put that stuff upon the man's eyes, for that will only make them worse. That dust is full of all manner of impurities; that very dust has helped to blind thousands and thousands of the people of this country." A traveller in that vicinity says,

"Blindness is common in Palestine to a degree which we in western lands can scarcely realize. There is probably no country in the world, except Egypt, where this affliction is so prevalent. At Gaza, for instance, it is said that one-third of the population has lost one or both eyes, and from my own observation of that city I should not hesitate to say that the statement is not exaggerated."

Why, then, did our Lord use a clay or ointment made out of that dust, apparently so unsuitable, and then send the blind man to the Pool of Siloam to wash and receive his sight? We answer that probably a deep spiritual lesson is contained in it, a lesson for all the apostles and for the followers of Jesus from then until now. As the blindness of the man was figurative of the general blindness upon the people, blindness to the Truth, blindness to the light of the world, so this method of healing the blindness will illustrate the method the Lord has been using throughout this Gospel age. The secretions of our Lord's mouth might well represent his grace and truth, while the earth used may well represent the poor earthly talents of us and his disciples. Who are we, that we should be made the instruments of God in opening the eyes of the blind – we who are imperfect ourselves, blemished, fallen? But the spirit of the Lord's lips coming upon us so transforms our energies and talents as to make them useful in his service. By the grace of God, as his mouthpieces, representatives, his followers have opened the blind eyes, not of all people, but of many, nevertheless.

What a blessing we realized when such human clay was used of the Lord for the anointing of our eyes, and what a privilege was granted in that we have been made the clay ointment the Master has used in the blessing of others. But the anointing was not sufficient, it needed more; it needed the washing at the fountain. And so after the Lord has used us, his servants, as the clay in his hands for the anointing of blinded eyes, it is necessary that we should direct them to the fountain of his truth and grace, where they may wash, where they may realize that the cleansing is of the Lord's provision entirely, and that however good the clay and however [R3520 : page 76] thorough the anointing, no blessing could come except as they obediently and in faith accepted the grace and truth as the refreshing stream of divine favor to their enlightenment.

The miracle of the opening of the eyes of one born blind was so notable that it attracted the attention of all in the neighborhood. None had ever before heard of any physician able to restore sight to one who was born blind. The matter was brought to the attention of the Pharisees and Doctors of the Law as a wonderful instance of divine power, or to see if they could offer any other solution for the matter. Evidently this was a part of our Lord's design and a part of what he meant when he declared that the man was not born blind as a punishment for sin but for the glory of God. God allowed nature to take its course in this manner and to produce an exception or freak of nature, and now the one who had been thus afflicted in the past was made the recipient of a special blessing which fully compensated him. Let us learn to view all of life's affairs from this standpoint. Whatever we may have that by nature would seem to be disadvantageous or a hindrance to us, the Lord is able to so overrule as to make of it a blessing, a proportionately greater blessing.

The Pharisees, full of envy against Jesus, perceived that his influence was gaining daily with the people, and this made them the more bitter against him. In their wrong condition of heart they had already prejudged his heart and his motive, not by the fruits of his life, but by their envious sentiments. Of course, under the circumstances, the judgment would be warped and twisted, leading to wrong conclusions. They catechised the parents, who feared to give any expression on the subject, because they had heard that the rulers of the synagogue had determined that if any one should confess Jesus he should be excommunicated, should not be permitted to attend the synagogue or fellowship with others or enjoy its religious privileges, should be counted unworthy the name and privileges of a Jew, should be treated as an outcast from God and his people. They, therefore, answered that their son was of age and that he could speak for himself.

The son was questioned over and over with an evident desire to find some fault with the procedure, to show that it was not a genuine miracle, etc. The man formerly blind became justly indignant at the special attempt to traduce the one who had so befriended him, and in answer to the Pharisees' statement that he should give glory only to God, because the one who had performed the miracle was a sinner, he demurred. As they repeated their questions he became more indignant at their evil spirit and said, Why do you ask so many questions? Are you anxious to become his disciples? He touched a sore spot and aroused their wrath, and they declared that he was a disciple of Jesus, and cast him out of the synagogue and ostracised him. It was after this that Jesus found him. We read, "Jesus heard that they had cast him out, and when he found him he said unto him, Dost thou believe on the Son of God? and he answered, I believe, and worshipped."


In this we have a fresh illustration of how hindrances and difficulties and obstacles may become the greatest helps and aids under God's providences to those who are of the right condition of heart. This poor blind man, an ignorant beggar, seemingly most unfortunate of men, seemingly least cared for by the Lord, was evidently at heart honest and sincere. This was demonstrated by his after conduct, because character, principle, cannot be put on in a moment, but is a matter of development. It was, doubtless, because the Lord saw in his heart this sincerity that he specially favored him with the blessing of the opening of the eyes, and that it was because he was honest enough and fearless enough to confess the Lord in a proper manner that he was still further favored, and that the Lord sought him out and granted him the opening of the eyes of his understanding in addition to the opening of his natural eyes. If we could but receive this lesson fully and completely into our hearts, what a great blessing it would bring us as impressing upon us the necessity for honesty of heart, and as proofs to us of the willingness of the Lord to make all things work together for good to them who love him – even to them who are of the right attitude of heart, which would love the Lord if it knew him. To such he is willing to grant his favors and the opening of the eyes of their understanding – not suddenly, but step by step. As we follow the Lord's directions we get one blessing after another.

Let us draw further a lesson as between the experiences of this blind man and the spiritual lesson already suggested. Some of us were born blind or nearly blind as respects the ability to see our heavenly Father's glorious face and the reflection of the same in our Lord Jesus. We were born blind through no folly of our own and through no folly of our parents, perhaps. Darkness covered the earth and gross darkness the people – the darkness of idolatry and heathendom upon the majority of the world, and the darkness of the Dark Ages upon the so-called Christian world. We saw not the Lord, and our fancies, inspired by the great Adversary, were gross misunderstandings of the wisdom, justice, love and power of our Creator.

The Scriptures tell us that the darkness or blindness came from the Adversary, the god of this world, who blinds the minds of them who believe not, lest the glorious light of God's goodness should shine in their hearts from the face of Jesus Christ our Lord. In the Lord's own time and way he sent us a blessing through the poor dust of the earth, blended and tempered with the secretions of his mouth, and sent the message, too, that we should wash at the fountain. Thus washing we realized the forgiveness of sins and saw in a new light the love and mercy of our Father in heaven. Then came testings, not to destroy us but to prove us and to develop us if we were sincere at heart.

The agencies used by our Lord for our blessing were produced perhaps by our friends. The threat of ostracism was before our mind as we confessed the blessing we had received and the source from which it came. All possessed with the right spirit in the matter surely followed the course of this blind man of our lesson, and courageously confessed the blessings received and the quarter from which they came. Now as then such a confession brings repudiation, contempt, sarcasm and casting out, but now as well as then obedience and the acceptance of such experiences mean an additional manifestation to us of divine favor.

It was after we had endured something for the Lord's sake and for the Truth's sake, and rejoicing in [R3521 : page 77] our opened eyes, that the Lord found us in a particular sense and revealed himself to us in a still higher and more favorable blessing, and thus we became his disciples in the highest sense – his followers. Let us continue to follow him; let us continue to take whatever experiences come to us in the path of duty, and realize that it is a privilege to be on the side of the right and the Truth. Those who are faithful now in the present time of trials and testings will, as the Lord's disciples, be privileged in turn to be used of him in anointing the eyes of others, and thus all the members of the body under the guidance of the Lord, the Head, will during this present time work the works of him that sent us, and let the light shine out, realizing that the opportunities for service will soon now be closed – the night is coming when no man can work.

The great time of trouble just preceding the shining forth of the Sun of Righteousness is near. The little time between now and then is for the very purpose of selecting out the Lord's true people and applying to them the eye-salve of Truth and informing them where they must wash, and in general in bringing to them the blessings of joint-heirship and discipleship until the body of Christ shall be complete. Very shortly, to those thus faithful, will be the privilege also of association with our Lord and Head as the Light of the world in the blessing of all the families of the earth.

[R3521 : page 77]

The multitude saw but the cross of olive wood
The Man of Sorrows bore, nor knew how underneath,
Close pressed upon his heart, a hidden cross he wore –
A dark and bleeding weight of sin and human woe,
Made heavier with the sentence of God's broken law,
And crowned with thorns of scornful and malicious hate, –
A cross the world's Redeemer found on Jordan's brink,
Nor laid it down until he came to Calvary.

Oft times it seemed he almost craved some human aid,
Some sympathizing heart to share that cruel cross.
Jerusalem, Jerusalem, hadst thou but known
What time that cross bore heaviest on the yearning heart
Of him, thy King! And yet, O slow of faith and hard
Of heart, "Ye would not," and the King passed on his way;
And of the people there was none with him! He trod
Alone the valley of this dark world's shame and woe.

O, chosen three, had ye but watched with him "one hour"
That awful night in dark Gethsemane, ye might
Have lightened some the cruel weight of that dread cross, –
Have known and shared with him that agonizing woe.
Alas! alas! Your eyes were heavy and ye slept.
So now, "sleep on and take your rest," ye weary ones.
An holy angel's wing hath eased the hidden cross –
Your Master, strengthened, waits that other cross to bear.

Which one bore heavier on the way to Calvary?
The cross the cruel Roman soldiers laid upon
The Blessed One? Ah, no! it was the unseen cross
That crushed him to the earth, that wrung from those pale lips
The agonizing cry, "My God! my God! oh, why
Hast thou forsaken me?" In grief earth rent her breast,
The sun grew dark; "'Tis finished," and the price is paid, –
The hidden cross had pierced that loving, tender heart!

"Take up thy cross and follow me," the Master said.
Ah, yes! his faithful Bride must also bear a cross, –
The hidden cross, made not of life's vicissitudes
Alone, its ills and pains, its loss and poverty, –
The outward signs the multitude behold.
Ah, no! we follow in his steps who went before
Us in the narrow way. We, too, must bear the woe,
Be touched with feeling of the world's infirmity,
Its weary weight of sin and curse of broken law.
Let us therefore, go forth to him "without the gate,"
Lay down our lives in sacrifice, spend and be spent;
And while we clasp this cross more closely to our breast,
Press on toward Calvary, for there our Bridegroom waits
To take the cross of woe, and give a crown of joy!

G. W. S.

[R3521 : page 77]

JOHN 20:31. – MARCH 26. –

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

HE beautiful words of our text set forth clearly the entire object and purpose of all of God's messages during this Gospel age, and hence the object or purpose of all the preaching done in his name and by his authority. When we consider the unlimited power of God, we are at first inclined to wonder why so little of it is displayed during this Gospel age in connection with the proclamation of the great Gospel message – with the legions of angels who could communicate with mankind and instruct them respecting God and his character, who could communicate as in the olden times, as when Moses was taught from the burning bush and Abraham by the visit of strangers to his tent.

When we consider, too, how God could teach the world by signs and lessons and disciplines, without a word of instruction either from human lips or from angels – if he would punish their wrong doing and reward their right doing promptly and markedly, it would leave no question in the minds of any respecting right and wrong, respecting that which would be pleasing to the Lord and that which would be displeasing. How speedily this course would have brought in the reign of righteousness and have effected a world reformation. Again, the Lord could blazon out in letters of fire upon the sky, in every language under heaven, the messages respecting his pleasure and displeasure. No wonder that some have thought it strange that divine wisdom should adopt the plan which has been adopted and which has seemed to have been so ineffectual as respects the righting of the world of mankind – so ineffectual that now, after more than eighteen centuries of preaching, the great mass of the world are in absolute ignorance of Christ and the Father, and almost none see clearly and distinctly the true significance of the message he has sent us.

However, as we begin to get the eyes of our understanding more and more widely open to the appreciation of the teachings of the Lord's Word, we see more and more clearly his plan and the wisdom of the course he has adopted, which is briefly expressed by the Apostle when he says, "It has pleased God through the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe." (1 Cor. 1:21) – preaching which seems to be so foolish, to be so weak, to be the [R3521 : page 78] poorest way the Lord could have possibly chosen to make known the riches of his grace – a way so open to hindrance through the weaknesses and imperfections of the human channels used!


Nor will it do to answer, as some have done, that not merely those who hear the Gospel message are profited by it, but that "millions are saved who have never heard of the historic Christ." The words of the Apostle quite contradict this thought: "It pleased God through the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe," implies that those who do not believe are not saved, and implies also that not the belief of anything or everything is saving but merely the believing of that which is preached by divine authority – "The faith once delivered to the saints." – Jude 3.

How closely in line with this is our text in this lesson, "These things were written" – the Gospel narrative of the words and acts of our Lord, and also the words and acts of the apostles, in order that men might believe on Jesus as the Messiah, the Son of God, and that believing they might have life through them. No hope is here held out of life without believing, and no hope held out on a vague faith will be satisfactory. It was not sufficient to believe that Jesus was the God-Man and that he died on a cross at the hands of his enemies, a notable martyr for liberty and righteousness; – more than this must be believed.

It is not sufficient to believe anything less than that Jesus was the Son of God – not the son of Joseph; it is not sufficient to believe in him in any other way than as the Son of God, and that additionally he is the Messiah – the one long promised as the seed of Abraham, whose mission it shall yet be to bless all the families of the earth: "In thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed." All this seems to be the Gospel; to believe anything less seems to be lacking the faith here enjoined; to believe all of this seems to be essential to discipleship. We cannot help how many of the wise and learned and good have rejected this scriptural statement of the object of this Gospel age, and have determined that it must be otherwise and prefer their own opinions, [R3522 : page 78] their own reasoning, to the message of the Lord through his Son and his inspired apostles.

If such a statement as this were held in our minds alongside some false theory – such, for instance, as the one which declares that all who are not saved in the present time pass to an eternity of torture without hope of escape – then such a blending of the truth of God with the errors inspired by the Adversary would be sure to cause confusion in our minds; and the word of the Lord, to the effect that salvation could only be had through faith in Christ, would seem to leave the way to God too narrow and to practically destroy all hope for the world in general and to make the God of love to appear to be heartless, loveless, and evil-intentioned, since he knew the end from the beginning and had the power to have brought all to the knowledge of Jesus, or to have made some other arrangement than the preaching through imperfect vessels the way of access to faith and his favor and love and the life which he will give.

But we notice that our text says nothing about the lost receiving life eternal in torture. On the contrary, it implies that they are without life, declaring that only those who believe in the proper manner can have the life which he gives. And this reminds us of our Lord's own words to the same effect – "He that hath the Son hath life, he that hath not the Son hath not life."


It is a fact beyond dispute that few come under the conditions of our text. Few believe in Jesus as the Messiah, the Son of God, whom he will use according to the prophecies for the blessing of all the families of the earth, and few thus believe to the extent necessary to enter into life with him. Few believe enough respecting our Lord to bring them to the point of full faith in his blood as their cleanser from sin, or to bring them to the further step of a full consecration then to his service, or to hold them in the narrow way to the end of the journey, when the crowns of life will be given at the appearing of the Life-Giver at his second advent. And if only a few, only a little flock, thus hear the message, the preaching, and if these things were merely written for the benefit of these, where comes in the world? – the world which, according to one view, is in eternal torture or going thither; or, according to a more moderate view, is in death, the Second Death, or going thither – on the broad road to destruction.

How can the Lord Jesus ever fulfil the prediction that he is to be the Light of the world to those who have never seen him and never heard his name, either with the natural or spiritual eyes or with the natural or spiritual ears? How can the declaration ever be fulfilled that the Lord tasted death for every man, and that all the families of the earth are to be blessed through him?

We answer that there is but the one way of understanding this entire matter and that is the Scriptural way, which takes in not merely the few isolated texts, but includes comprehensively all the teachings of the Scriptures from Genesis to Revelation. It is to the effect that during this Gospel age God's purpose is merely the selection of those who have an ear to hear – of those who, when the message is sounded, have heard and to some extent understood and appreciated it, and who will go on in the understanding and appreciation to a full and grander grasp of the lengths and breadths and heights and depths of the love and mercy of God.

These "the love of God constraineth," the still small voice is heard by their hearts, they "walk by faith and not by sight," and need not to have the heavens emblazoned with the divine commands. To them day unto day uttereth speech and night unto night showeth knowledge, and the entire heavens are ablaze with messages of God's favors and blessings, which imply also his justice and his love. To these the message of salvation through the blood of Christ appeals; they are not wise above what is written; they accept divine wisdom as better than human wisdom and the divine Word as preferable to the traditions of men. These, under the guidance of the holy Spirit, are making increase not only in their numbers century after century, but also making increase of their character development individually; and when the age shall close it will be found that God's wisdom and love and power will have been exercised in such a manner that they shall have found and prepared the peculiar people of the Lord, the little flock, the Royal Priesthood, who, at the second coming of their Master, shall be received by him as a Bride company, to be his joint-heirs in the glorious kingdom for which we pray, [R3522 : page 79] "Thy Kingdom come, thy will be done in earth as it is done in heaven."


With the completion of this elect class – chosen because they were found to be lovers of righteousness and haters of iniquity, and because they were willing to walk in the narrow way and to follow the Lamb through evil and through good report and to walk by faith and not by sight – shall ultimately come the blessing of the Lord in the First Resurrection, and they shall be made partakers of glory, honor and the divine nature. Then, the Scriptures assure us, they shall shine forth as the Sun in the Kingdom of their Father, – shine for the blessing of all the families of the earth, shine for the scattering of all the ignorance and superstition and clouds and darkness which now enslave the race, shine that all the blind eyes may be opened and all the deaf ears unstopped, shine that the knowledge of the glory of God may fill the whole earth, shine out that the willing and obedient of the world may see the right way and be drawn by the light of grace and truth of God along the highway of holiness to the end thereof, life eternal, through the merit of him who loved the world and bought it with his own precious blood.

[R3522 : page 79]


The following testimony is from a native East Indian, who was formerly an active ordained minister in the Methodist Church Mission there and in Jamaica. He is using this testimony amongst his former associates in ministerial work, to arouse their interest in the Harvest message:


It is with pleasure that I write to you about what I have found to be so ennobling and satisfying, and with which I am now being blessed. I cannot here attempt to give the kind of testimony I would like to give of the Lord's gracious dealings with me, to his glory and for the edification of fellow creatures.

While working for the Society of Friends in St. Thomas several religious books were put into my hands from time to time to read. Although I was conscious of justification and enjoyed more or less the joy and peace resulting from this condition since 1884, the perusal of these books led me to think that there was something yet higher, richer and more satisfying to be had which I had not attained. I made it a matter of prayer, and thought much over it.

In due time another book, entitled "The Divine Plan of the Ages," was sent to me on loan from America, in case I did not like to purchase it. I began to read this carefully and with prayer. To my surprise I found it more – far more instructive and enlightening, containing more food for the mind on almost every page of it than any other production of uninspired pen I had ever known before or since. When I reached the place where the pious and able author treats on consecration and its object, I could not resist the temptation of going down upon my knees and giving up myself to God in a particular sense, and in every respect. The act of thus yielding oneself to the Lord was a pleasurable one to me. I arose from my knees feeling that I had done the right thing, and the joy that filled my soul I could hardly contain.

Allow me to recommend to you as a duty and a pleasure, this little work of 356 pages. It contains rich messages from the "Great King," calculated to make the bad good and the good better, and so it does wherever it is rightly used. It is a real eye-opener – a veritable key of the Bible. It is more than a match for the enemies of the Bible – the "higher critic," "evolutionist," "Christian Scientist," "skeptic," and "infidel." If you wish to be aided to see things in their harmonious, consistent and soul-refreshing beauty – things that go to show what wonderful provision God has made for his Church – "the sanctified" ones "in Christ Jesus," and for the world of mankind – things which duly magnify his love, justice, wisdom and power as a harmonious whole, without contradicting each other in the least – if you wish to see these, then read this telling little book, "The Divine Plan of the Ages," which will lead you into the treasury of God's own Word – the mine of things "new and old." Read it with Bible in hand and then think of the result of your investigation. I am acquainted with the main teachings of the leading denominations or "orthodoxy" – hence I know what I am recommending to others.

"Light is sown for the righteous." The "sure word of prophesy....shineth more and more to the perfect day." It is of a growing nature – outgrows all that are fixed and stationary – the creeds of men which cannot keep pace with the verities of a progressive revelation. Faulty translations and human traditions have done much to obscure the clear and consistent teachings of God's Word. Hence it becomes us "to give the more earnest heed to the" inspired [R3523 : page 79] injunction: "Prove all things, hold fast to that which is good."

I remain, dear friend,



You will surely be interested to hear something about the harvest work in Norway, and the progress it has made to this time. As you know, Brother G__________ has been laboring near here, and the result that can be seen by us is some thirty or forty interested in that town. During this last summer he has visited the towns in North Norway, and has noticed some evidences of interest among a few Christians in that region.

Brother F__________ has visited the towns in South Norway, and especially in Havanger (population 30,600). The Present Truth has been received with joy, so that quite a few dear Christians there are now deeply interested, especially among the members of the Free Mission Church here. Many have already seen much of the light – besides there are some interested not belonging to any denomination.

At present Brother F__________ and Brother G__________ are both in Bergen (population 72,000) where they intend to work together during this winter. There the DAWNS seem to have already set on foot a remarkable movement. In no other place in Scandinavia has harvest truth been so quickly and heartily received by so many, as in Bergen. A prominent preacher of the Free Mission Church of that town has become thoroughly grasped by the clear light, and he is now setting forth the full and true Gospel to his always large and attentive audiences. Also another prominent man there, an old teacher and editor, is strongly touched by the Truth. The testimonies of these two dear brethren seem to make a very strong impression upon the minds of other Christians.

But there is every appearance of a coming persecution also. In a letter of December 13th, Brother F__________ tells of an interested sister, who for many years has been working as a teacher in the Sunday School of "Indre-missionen," and who has been summoned to leave that post. But the friends do not fear.

The light has been spreading itself in the following way: Some time ago a few interested were arranging "reading meetings," in which one was reading from the DAWNS, and the others, with their open Bibles in hand, trying every point. When there came a point which any could not apprehend clearly, the reader would stop, that some one able might get an opportunity to make that point clear. These meetings still continue and the interest and blessings grow. I don't know how many really interested there are, but at one such meeting, held in a private family, there were twenty-three present, all seemingly being of one mind and spirit. Of course these facts bring great joy to the dear Colporteur brethren.

In spite of the financial distress the Present Truth is accomplishing its work, spreading about the light more and more. This makes us satisfied, even though we would be bound to endure many privations. With much love, your fellow servant in Christ,


page 81
March 1st

Herald of Christ's Presence

Other foundation can
no man lay

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

VOL. XXVI.MARCH 15, 1905.No. 6
Views from the Watch Tower 83
The Czar's Speech to Workmen 83
Prospects of a Russian Revolution 83
The Influence of Spiritism Widens 84
Some Truth from Dr. Huntington 84
Canadian Church Union Movement 85
Rev. W. Spencer Walton's View of Nominal Christendom 85
National Federation Seems Assured 86
Our "Passover" Memorial 86
True Shepherd, True Sheep, True Fold 88
"Lazarus, Come Forth" 91
Readings from the Swedish Revised Bible 95
Public Ministries of the Truth 96
Special Items 82

'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 82

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, 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.

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.

"BIBLE HOUSE," 610, 612, 614 ARCH ST., ALLEGHENY, PA., U.S.A.
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PRICE, $1.00 (4S.) A YEAR IN ADVANCE, 5c (2½d.) A COPY.

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.



[R3528 : page 82]


At Bible House Chapel the first Sunday in each quarter is open for appointments for symbolic immersion. This rule will be set aside next quarter. Because of the Memorial Service coming on Sunday, April 16th, the Baptism service will take place on the same date, – at 3 p.m.


An article under this caption has been crowded out of two issues, but D.V. will appear in our next. It clearly indicates the approach of conditions we have long been expecting from Revelation 13:11-17. page 82


We have now this pamphlet in TOWER form. Tract Fund contributors, also the poor, may order these without price. Others who so prefer may purchase what they can use at 3 for 10 cents.


A new Chart, similar to the one in the front of DAWN I., five feet long, done in solar tint (blue print) has been prepared. These we can supply at $1.00 each, express prepaid. We still have the 5-ft. Charts, painted, at $1.50 each, express prepaid. Either style is excellent for your sitting room. The explanation of it is entertaining as well as instructive to your friends who may call, and will prove very helpful to yourself; for if you learn to explain it to others you will have a good store of information for your own heart.

[R3523 : page 83]


FOLLOWING the appeal to the Czar, of the striking workmen of St. Petersburg, which was refused, and the bloodshed which resulted when the crowds attempted to enter the palace grounds after being forbidden to do so, the Czar sent an invitation to some of the leading workmen to visit him at his palace. They responded, and the following is a detailed report of their reception: –


Emperor Nicholas adopted the traditional fatherly tone in his talk with the workmen yesterday. He chided them for allowing themselves to be misled into engaging in a movement imperiling the internal order of Russia and aiding the foreign foe, and for attempting to demand by force what he otherwise would be willing to do voluntarily.


This interview, face to face with their "Little Father," in whom their faith has not been shaken by the events of the bloody Sunday of January 22, has had a far greater and more reassuring effect than any number of proclamations by Ministers and Governors General, and the workmen of St. Petersburg are now generally inclined to accept the promises of Governor General Trepoff and Finance Minister Kokovsoff at their face value.

The gift by the imperial family of $25,000 to aid the families of the victims of the conflict of January 22 also has had an excellent effect; and as the news slowly permeates the laboring classes of Russia it is expected it will make them content to wait for the promised reforms.

The workmen received the royal assurances of reform with cheers, and after a lunch at the imperial table returned to St. Petersburg in the best of humor to report to their fellows, as enjoined, the words of His Majesty. No attempt was made by them to present their desires, which already are sufficiently evident.


The action of the St. Petersburg manufacturers in placing themselves in the hands of the Government in the matter of the adjustment of the main points of the dispute, and promising to grant the men pay for the time they have been on strike, not as a matter of right, but as a favor, and their contribution in aid of the sufferers among the families of their workmen, are expected to add to the prevailing good feeling.

The workmen's deputation was accompanied to the Czar's palace by Minister of Finance Kokovsoff and Governor General Trepoff. The workmen bowed low to the Emperor, who said:

"Good day, my children."
The workmen replied:
"We wish Your Majesty good health."
The Emperor then said:

"I have summoned you in order that you may hear my words from myself and communicate them to your companions. The recent lamentable events, with such sad but inevitable results, have occurred because you allowed yourselves to be led astray by traitors and enemies to our country. When they induced you to address a petition to me on your needs, they desired to see you revolt against me and my government. They forced you to leave your honest work at a period when all Russian workmen should be laboring unceasingly in order that we might vanquish our obstinate enemy.

"Strikes and disgraceful demonstrations led the crowds to disorders which obliged, and always will oblige, the authorities to call out troops. As a result, innocent people were victims.


"I know that the lot of the workmen is not easy. Many things require improvement, but have patience. You will understand that it is necessary to be just toward your employers and to consider the condition of our industries. But to come to me as a rebellious mob in order to declare your wants, is a crime.

"In my solicitude for the working classes I will take measures which will assure that everything possible will be done to improve their lot and secure an investigation of their demands through legal channels. I am convinced of the honesty of the workmen and their devotion to myself, and I pardon their transgression. Return to your work with your comrades and carry out the tasks allotted to you.

"May God assist you."

At the conclusion of his speech the Emperor told the members of the deputation to communicate his words to their comrades, and said he would supply them with printed copies of his address.


The London Spectator, in an able article on Russia says:

"The probability that the dynasty will be crippled and a revolution of some kind inaugurated is very great. The true pivot of power in Russia, the mystical belief in the autocratic [R3523 : page 84] Czar, has been shaken, if not destroyed. The autocracy substituted for his is that of the elder grand dukes, who have no 'divine' claims, who are divided by incurable jealousies, spites and rival female pretensions, and who are, with one exception, men without great parties behind them. If they make, as is possible, a palace revolution, they run the risk of dividing the troops, for the baby heir and the sickly Grand Duke Michael stand between the strong Vladimir and the succession, and the army, or sections of it, might pronounce for different men. Every ambition will be unloosed, and under an autocracy fear makes all ambitions fiercer. Meanwhile Kuropatkin will be hampered by want of supplies and reinforcements, and a new discredit must fall on Russian arms, which are now employed six thousand miles from St. Petersburg, and liable to paralysis from any interruption en route. The [R3524 : page 84] great cities, Moscow, Odessa, Kieff, Riga, and perhaps others farther east, are seething with agitation; the Reservists are furious and have arms; and it is hardly conceivable that the millions of revolutionaries, all white men and most of them drilled men, should not produce a competent leader who when he appears will be recognized in a flash. Even if we discredit the very minute accounts of the mutiny of the Black Sea sailors, and the refusal of the troops to crush them, it is clear that the vastness of the empire which has so long protected the central power is turning against it, and that the authorities may be more than bewildered by the necessity of violent repression in so many places at once. Prophecy is of course, futile; but we should say that unless the imperial family produces, or can attract, a chancellor of genius who understands how to preserve the autocracy by conciliation, or to transmute it into a despotism bound by laws like the governments of India and Germany, the days of the terrible regime which has prevailed in Russia for more than two centuries are approaching to an end."


Recently a Catholic priest (Mgr. Doane) on his death bed related a vision he had – that he was taken to heaven and saw the Lord and the throne and a great crowd in which he definitely recognized one person at least. There was some error about the matter, surely, for Catholics admit that practically none of their Church go directly to heaven – that all go first to purgatory. We doubt not masses were said for poor Doane, for the easing of his soul in purgatory. And if priests and popes know and teach that they can and do liberate such souls from time to time they surely ought to know who are there. Otherwise how could they know whom to attempt to deliver.

Our point is that poor Doane's words were taken up by a leading newspaper, and reporters sent to interview leading ministers of various denominations on the subject. These interviews were published, and several of them show a remarkable tendency toward Spiritism. As a whole they show that the leaders of the nominal Church are prepared to lead their flocks toward Spiritism. Nay, the words we quote will doubtless influence thousands in that direction. We quote the words of two of the more prominent as follows: –


Dr. George R. Van de Water, rector of St. Andrew's Episcopal Church, said to an "American" reporter last night that he considered the vision of Mgr. Doane as direct and indisputable evidence of the belief that he had always held, that it was possible for people on earth to hold communion with the souls in Heaven.

"I have always maintained the possibility of communication with the other world. Any man with the experience of dying persons which a clergyman or a physician has cannot fail to know positively that glimpses of Heaven are often vouchsafed to persons of great faith and saintly lives on their deathbeds.

"Personally, I consider that it is just as unscientific to deny the possibility of supernatural manifestations and the meaning and significance of dreams and visions as it is unscientific to swing to the other extreme and attribute to perfectly natural phenomena occult and supernatural meaning.

"Mgr. Doane's vision has unquestionably made a wide and profound impression on the mind of the public, just as it appeared to have made a deep impression upon his own mind at the time. The fact that these things are not to be understood or explained is no reason why they should not be believed."


The Rev. Dr. Charles H. Parkhurst, discussing with an "American" reporter last night the wonderful vision of Mgr. Doane, frankly avowed a deep interest in the investigation of these problems that hitherto have been regarded as entirely outside the domain of strict religious thought.

He declared that he saw nothing incompatible with Christianity in the earnest efforts that are being made by well-known scientists to reach a point of view where avowed spiritualists and devout Christians may agree on an explanation of the recurring phenomena in the unseen world.


"I myself have been impressed recently with the belief that there are spiritual manifestations going on about us in the unseen world which might profitably be investigated by some such organizations as that which Professor James, of Harvard, Professor Quackenbos, Dr. Hyslop and others are striving to form.

"As to dreams and visions, and this one in particular, I have no word to say. The matter, I should say, belongs to the psychologists. I should say that such things might be investigated by such a jury as I have referred to, and some practical results might thereby be attained."

"According to the story told by two men to whom Mgr. Doane related his dream, he had a distinct view of heaven, and was even conducted to the foot of the throne," said the reporter. "He disclosed to his friends the fact that he recognized at least one person whom he knew on earth, and spoke with him. Will you say, Dr. Parkhurst, whether or not this agrees with your conception of heaven?"

"No, I will not discuss that," replied Dr. Parkhurst.

"There has been an awakening along these lines recently, as is evidenced by the fact that such men as Professor James are giving serious attention to it. The danger lies in irresponsible persons, or those not fitted by study and temperament for the work, taking it up and exploiting it."

Dr. Parkhurst laughed at the idea that he was verging upon a belief in spiritualism, but referred to the remarkable experience of Dr. Funk with Mrs. Pepper in the matter of the lost widow's mite and the late Henry Ward Beecher.

"These are vastly interesting problems," he said in conclusion, "which we are not yet able to explain."

*                         *                         *

It is not necessary to claim that all visions are of evil origin. Doubtless some of the worst dreams have resulted from improper eating. We know of no reason why the Lord might not permit his people a special warning through a dream, although his proposal that we must learn to "walk by faith and not by sight" implies that such special guidances outside the Word will be very exceptional.

Visions, etc., occurring in connection with the delirium of fever or with the last flicker of life on a death-bed need [R3524 : page 85] not be considered uniformly miraculous – of a holy or of a Satanic inspiration. Bad people have had pleasing experiences of the kind, and the very best have experienced a horror of great darkness at the dying moment. Our Lord, for instance, cried aloud, "My God! my God! why hast thou forsaken me?" with his latest breath. Evidently our sleeping thoughts even more than our waking ones require supervision and rectification in the light of God's Word, – to which alone the Apostle commends us, and never to dreams and visions – our own or those of others.



"Readiness to suffer persecution is the supreme test of fidelity. That, perhaps, is the reason why Christ puts it at the very topmost round of his ladder of perfection. The special passion that distinguishes the persecutor is relentlessness. The figure is that of a bloodhound on the track of his victim. Earnestness turned to a bad use, describes the persecutor, for only so long as he is terribly in earnest is he to be feared. Curiously enough, the sorest persecutions that befell the early Christians befell them under the so-called 'good emperors.' The good emperors were given their epithet because they were diligent in attending to their business of governing. They saw that the new religion was eating into the very vitals of the Roman system, and that if not arrested, it would eventually overthrow the empire. Therefore, they persecuted the new religion's adherents, persecuted them to the death.

"The modern Church ought to be not a little mortified at observing how largely it is obliged to draw upon the annals of the far past for illustrations to supreme fidelity to duty. We interpret the 'faithful unto death' as meaning while life lasts, but there was a time when the words bore a sterner sense of faithful at the cost of dying. The Church of to-day is very much in the position of a man living on an inherited fortune; he may know how to enjoy it, but he has a very meagre knowledge of the toil and struggle that went to the amassing of it. The title deeds to this goodly heritage we call Christian civilization were written in blood, and in 'the place of the seal' we note, dim and faded by lapse of years, the sign of the cross.

"Whether the days of active persecution for conscience' sake have passed never to return is a question upon which only a rash thinker would venture an opinion. The time may conceivably come when a Christian minority may make itself so obnoxious to a non-Christian majority that there will be a renewal of physical pains and penalties. To-day toleration is the favorite word; it may not be to-morrow. As things are, the true reading of the Beatitude is that which applies it to those who dare to be unpopular rather than surrender what they know to be right. Under the soft condition of life as it is now lived, unpopularity is the nearest approach to persecution that is allowed.

"The age of the fagot and the axe is passed. The only flames of martyrdom to-day are those kindled by hot, burning words. It is with the breath of his lips or by the stroke of his pen that the modern lictor does his work. The desire [R3525 : page 85] for popularity is a natural instinct. The man never lived who was wholly devoid of it. The child desires popularity with his playmates, the college student with his class, the politician with his party, the man of business with the public, the seeker after social promotion with the particular set or circle in which he or she is ambitious to shine."

N.Y. Tribune.

Although there seems little likelihood that definite union will be accomplished for a long time to come, the movement in Canada toward an amalgamation of the Methodist, Presbyterian and Congregational churches of the Dominion, is progressing and leading men in all three bodies are seriously working for its accomplishment. There have been several meetings of committees, and the present status of the matter is that at the last joint meeting of the committees there were appointed sub-committees to consider the subjects respectively of "Doctrine," "Polity," "The Ministry," "Administration" and "Law."

Each sub-committee has forty members (sixteen Methodists, sixteen Presbyterians and eight Congregationalists), except the committee on law, which has but fifteen members. These committees will study the subject assigned them and report to some future meeting of the full joint committee, trying to find some basis on which all three bodies may agree. There is no disposition among Canadian leaders to hurry matters, for it is realized that so large a subject needs the most painstaking consideration, and that a successful union will need the hearty approval not only of leaders, but of the entire membership of the churches.

Boston Transcript.

Are we entering upon a new age of cathedral building? asks the New York Tribune. Not long ago it was announced that $750,000 had become available for work on the new cathedral of St. John the Divine; it is a matter of months only since the great Roman Catholic Cathedral of Westminster, in London, was finished; and it is less than a year since a bequest of $1,000,000 toward the construction of a cathedral for Boston was recorded. These facts lead The Tribune to remark: "The vast commercial structures, the luxurious hotels, must reach at last a limit beyond which men will go only for 'God and country.' Has the time come? In this period of magnificence and lavishness in building, are we at last turning some of our riches to the visible glorification of religion? If we are, we are coming indeed to a new age of cathedral building."


"After fifteen years' residence as a missionary in Africa, I find upon my return to America that the Church here is dead. I find that the Church has gone away backward; I find an immense amount of empty profession. The Church for the most part is dead, and why? Because she has opened her doors to the world. The spirits of sedition that are abroad have entered in. The people are running after Dowieism, Spiritualism, and all kinds of fads which make a pretence of being scientific.

"I ask you here, do you think that if Christ walked the streets of this city to-day he would be popular? I tell you no. To be a Christian means to take up your cross and follow him. When a Christian says that he can get along with everyone it is because he is not following close to Christ."

Toronto Star.

Recent despatches from Denmark tell of remarkable experiments, carried on in the Sound between Denmark and Sweden, for the purpose of testing the seaworthiness of a vessel built according to the dimensions of Noah's Ark, as given in Gen. 6:15. According to the Copenhagen Daily Dannebrog: "Naval architect Vogt, who has experimented for a long time with the dimensions of Noah's Ark as given in the Bible, has recently completed a model of that ancient craft....It measures 30 feet in length by 5 feet in width by 3 feet in height, the actual measurements of the Ark of Noah being 300 x 50 x 30. The model is built in the shape of an old-fashioned saddle-roof, so that a cross-section represents an isosceles triangle. When this queer-looking craft was released from the tugboat which had towed it outside the harbor and left to face the weather on its own account, it developed remarkable sea-going qualities. It drifted sideways with the tide, creating a belt of calm water to leeward, and the test proved conclusively that a vessel of this primitive [R3525 : page 86] make might be perfectly seaworthy for a long voyage. It is well known that the proportionate dimensions used by modern shipbuilders are identical with those of the diluvian vessel."


Eighteen religious bodies, including all of the principal ones, have now responded favorably to the proposition of the National Federation of Churches and Christian Workers to come together in a representative way and effect organization through which they may, on all great problems, speak as one body. Acceptances have behind them a constituency of nearly eighteen millions of communicants. Thus it may be said that Protestant America is getting ready to act.

The National Federation, which led in suggesting the scheme, has to some extent turned the working out of the details over to representatives of these bodies, who have set to work on their own account. The aim is not union of the bodies. Neither is it one designed to interfere with forms of government, much less to frame a doctrinal standard. It is, instead, unity on all moral questions, such as laws governing divorce and remarriage, Sabbath observance, temperance, and the scores of other matters with which form of denominational government and creed have nothing to do.

It is purposed to have the supreme judicatories of all the religious bodies joining in the movement appoint a commission or delegates, to represent them in the organization, if one be effected, and authorized to speak for them, to the end that the Church may be heard in no uncertain way. The meeting to effect this organization is to be held in Carnegie Hall, New York, next fall, and its sessions are to extend over six days, with various auxiliary meetings in the same period. A committee is now at work on the programme.

Boston Transcript.

[R3525 : page 86]

VERY year this celebration of our Redeemer's death seems more full of meaning and more impressive. The very fact that the date changes, and must be reckoned after the Jewish method of calculation, adds to the impressiveness, and brings afresh to our minds the various details of the Passover type and their fulfilment in the death of the Lamb of God – "Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us." – 1 Cor. 5:7.

The severe bondage of Israel under Pharaoh, the god or ruler of Egypt, calls to mind the bondage of corruption under which "the whole creation groans," being burdened under the reign of Sin and Death; and Pharaoh fitly typified Satan, "the god of this world." In the deliverance of all Israel under the leadership of Moses we see the deliverance, the liberation, of all who reverence God and his Laws under the leadership of the greater than Moses, – Christ, head and body, during the Millennium. In the overthrow of Pharaoh and his hosts we see the type of the destruction, in the Second Death, of Satan and all who follow his course. These anti-typical blessings are all the pictured results of the anti-typical Passover, of which Christ is the central figure.


The Scripture which refers to our Lord as the Lamb slain from before the foundation of the world indicates to us that all the details of this Passover were clearly in the mind and plan of God, not only since the Fall of Adam under the death sentence, but from long before Adam's creation. It thus assures us that although the Justice of God only was manifested for centuries, although divine Love was not "manifested" until the first advent of Jesus, nevertheless Love was in God's heart toward his creatures, – from the beginning.

As the Passover deliverance represented the Millennial blessing, so the Passover night represented this Gospel Age, in which all who trust in God wait for his salvation; – in which the entire "household of faith" feeds on the unleavened bread of Truth, mingled with the bitter herbs of trial and testing, waiting for the Morning; – in which the Church "of the first-born," under the protection of "the blood of the Lamb," is passed over from condemnation to justification, from death to life. Ah! there it is! For that reason we keep a continual feast of rejoicing in the Lord, feeding on our Lamb and unleavened bread and herbs. For this reason, also, we keep the annual Memorial of all this, "for even Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us, therefore let us keep the feast." – 1 Cor. 5:7.

It was this that our Master enjoined upon all his disciples, saying, "As often as ye do this, [as, year by year, ye shall frequently, before my second coming, do this] do it in remembrance of me; – and no longer in remembrance of the typical lamb and the typical passing over of the typical first-born of typical Israel.

For centuries the Adversary blinded the Lord's people to this simple custom of the early Church, persuading them first of all that the Romish Mass was the same thing, and later that the quarterly, monthly and weekly celebrations of Protestants would do as well. How much we were losing under those delusions [R3526 : page 86] we never knew until graciously brought to see the truth respecting "Christ our Passover, sacrificed for us," on whose account we, "first born," celebrate.

We will no longer be defrauded of the blessing our Lord designed for us. We will "keep the feast." And so surely as the consecrated believers of this age are the "Church of the first-born," so surely will there be a deliverance later of all of the household under the lead of the first-born (Christ), even as the type showed. And that the after-born delivered by Moses will ultimately consist only of the obedient the Apostle clearly shows. – Acts 3:23.


How much more impressive and inspiring it is to celebrate an important matter on its anniversary; – to recall the deeds and words and looks, and place ourselves with the chief actors of that greatest of all dramas which over eighteen centuries ago ended at Calvary. It even strengthens our general faith in divine providence to note that the very day, the very hour, as well as the very year of this tragedy God had predetermined, so that although previously the Jews sought to take him to put him to death, no man laid hands on him, because [R3526 : page 87] "his hour was not yet come." The precise time of this great event had not only been typified for centuries with careful precision as to the very day, but our Lord with equal exactness declared "Mine hour is come," and when instituting the bread and wine Memorial of his own death as the antitypical lamb he waited, "and when the hour was come he sat down" with his disciples to eat the Passover Supper, saying, "With desire have I desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer." – Luke 22:15.


With equal carefulness to that shown by our Lord and his apostles, let us keep the feast, the Memorial of his death, as he directed – not at any time, morning, noon or night, but only as a Supper – not any day, but only on its anniversary – if we would "do this," rather than commemorate something else, on some other date.

This year, Monday, April 17th, will correspond to the day on which our Lord was crucified, from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. when he died, crying, "It is finished." He was laid in Joseph's new tomb before 6 p.m., and the next day (beginning at that hour) was the first day of the Feast of Passover celebrated by the Jews, corresponding this year to Tuesday, April 18th. We celebrate nothing in common with our Hebrew friends, but refer to their date by way of making clear the date on which we locate our Lord's death and its Memorial Supper of the preceding evening.

Our Lord instituted the Memorial Supper, which he requested his followers to celebrate, after six o'clock on the evening before he was crucified, "in the same night in which he was betrayed." This, however, as we have previously shown, was on the 14th of Nisan, the very same day on which he died – God having provided the Jews a custom for counting their days from 6 p.m. to 6 p.m., from sundown to sundown.


Jesus and his disciples, being Jews, were obligated to keep the Jewish Passover Supper, and ate together a literal lamb, with herbs and unleavened bread, and wine; but we are no longer interested in those typical matters, which have forever passed away by being fulfilled in Christ. It was after the Jewish Passover Supper that our Lord instituted the new, the Memorial Supper, commemorative of his own sacrifice for the first-borns, and of their joint-sacrifice with him, as we shall show.

Whether the washing of his disciples' feet by our Lord was after the Passover Supper and before the Memorial Supper or after the latter, we can not be too positive, but apparently it was the latter (Matt. 26:26); and was intended as an example in humility and a lesson to the apostles who seem still to have had a spirit of rivalry for preeminence. In any event the feet washing was not a part of the Memorial, nor do we understand it to have been enjoined as a custom amongst our Lord's disciples, though we have no quarrel with those who think differently and choose to wash each other's feet literally. To our understanding, the lesson was that our Lord's followers were not to shun any service, however menial, that would enable them to assist or comfort one another. Performing this service to-day is usually far from a convenience to those who practice it, whereas other comforting services are often neglected.


Apparently it was just when the regular Jewish Passover Supper was ended that our Lord took some of the left-over unleavened bread, blessed it, broke it into pieces, and gave them to his disciples saying, "Take, eat; this is my body given for you; this do in remembrance of me." – Matt. 26:26; Mark 14:22; Luke 22:19.

These words "This is my body" have caused endless disputes for centuries amongst the Lord's people, the basis for the dispute being the Roman Catholic doctrine of the Mass, which claims that under the priest's blessing the bread is changed into the actual flesh of Jesus, which the priest then adores and proceeds to bread (a fresh sacrifice) for the sins of those for whom the Mass is said. To have this procedure resemble that of our Lord, great stress is laid on the words, "This is my body," thereby to prove the body in the bread and the possibility of its sacrifice. But the whole matter is very quickly settled when we remember that our Lord had not yet died when he said these words. Hence he must have meant, "This bread represents my body," for any other interpretation or meaning would have been untrue, – for he was still flesh, his change not having yet come in any sense.

Taking our Lord's words in their simple obvious sense, how beautiful is their lesson. Unleavened (pure) bread henceforth would at this Memorial represent our Lord, the bread from heaven, of which we may eat and have everlasting life. The next thought is that this heaven-supplied "bread" must be "broken" in order to be appropriated. And so we see that it was necessary not only for our Lord to come from heaven as the "bread;" but necessary also that he be broken in death – sacrificed for our sins – ere we could appropriate his merit and enjoy everlasting life.


The "fruit of the vine" was next introduced as a part of this Memorial of our Lord's loving sacrifice. He explained that it represented his blood – "The blood of the New Covenant, shed for many for the remission of sins." (Matt. 26:28.) What a reminder this is of the ransom-price necessary and paid on behalf of the sins of the world. The broken bread taught a part of the lesson, the "cup" taught the remainder of it. We not only need nourishment, strength, assistance to come back to God and his favor, but we need the precious blood – the life of our Lord as our redemption price to release us from the condemnation of Justice.

The Lord's disciples must, by faith partake of (appropriate) both the "bread" and the "cup," or they cannot be one with him. More than this: the Apostle shows that there is another subsequent view of this Memorial. We who thus eat and drink – who thus partake of our [R3526 : page 88] Savior's merits – are reckoned in with him as his "members," as his "body," being broken; and our lives sacrificed in his service under his direction are counted as a part of his sacrifice. The Apostle's words are: The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion [common-union] of the blood of Christ? The loaf which we break, is it not the common-union of the body of Christ? For we being many are one loaf, and one body, because we are all partakers of that one loaf [Christ]." – 1 Cor. 10:16,17.

Ah, yes! How deep are the Lord's lessons! and the deeper we look the more beauty we see, the eyes of our understanding opening more and more as we appreciate and heartily obey. "Let us keep the feast" in both senses, then: (1) Appropriating and feasting on the great work done for us by our Redeemer and the riches of grace granted us through him; and (2) Appreciating our privilege of joint-sacrifice with our Redeemer – laying down our lives in his service, for the brethren, etc., and thus "filling up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ." – Col. 1:24.

Left behind, not because our Lord could not suffer enough for all, nor because his sufferings were not sufficient for all, but because he wished to have us with him to share his nature and his glory, and only by suffering with him and as his members could we be allowed to share his glory, honor and immortality.


We exhort all the Lord's brethren everywhere to join us in observing the Lord's Memorial on its proper anniversary, as above stated. Gather with as many as profess faith and consecration – urge not others. Let us meet in twos and threes and larger groups as opportunity permits. Take a day or two off if necessary to assemble with brethren nearest you. Do not let monetary considerations decide everything. One spiritual feast with the Lord and those who celebrate his Memorial in sincerity is worth more to us than several meals of natural food. Man shall not live by earthly bread alone, but specially by the bread from heaven.

Even the solitary ones who cannot possibly meet with even one more should celebrate. "Soda biscuits" are unleavened bread and will do very well – though if you live near a Hebrew family they will be pleased to sell you an unleavened loaf (cracker) for a cent or two. As for "fruit of the vine:" it is advisable to put away a bottle of grape juice every summer; but if you have none you can stem raisins and use the juice, which will be "fruit of the vine" as truly as any other.

But do not let us allow preparations for the Memorial to so fill our thoughts that the real meaning of the emblems will be forgotten. On the contrary, let us give as much of the preceding and the succeeding days as [R3527 : page 88] possible to prayer, and to meditation on the stupendous events memorialized, and feed upon the Living Bread in our hearts with thankful joy.

We again recommend that after the season of communion, while partaking of the symbolic bread and cup, the meetings all close as did the one our Lord conducted as an example. "They sang a hymn and went out." Let us do the same. Omitting our usual greetings, etc., let us keep our thoughts with the Lord in Gethsemane, at the High Priest's Court, before Pilate, before Herod, before Pilate again – beaten, condemned to death, carrying his cross, crucified – for our sins. These thoughts are sure to make us appreciate our Lord the more and to hate sin the more, and thus will help us to realize better "what manner of persons we ought to be in all holy conversation and godliness."

We would like to have a postal card from each little company thus celebrating, stating the number present and participating. Please appoint some one, for what is everybody's business is not attended to properly. But have the appointment made a week or more before, so that it will not disturb the proper closing of the meeting.

[R3527 : page 88]

JOHN 10:7-18. – APRIL 2. –

Golden Text: – "The Good Shepherd giveth his life for the sheep."

HE PARABLE of the Good Shepherd opens with the first verse of John 10, and really concludes with the incidents of our last lesson, which showed the Scribes and Pharisees angry with the blind man who had been healed at the Pool of Siloam, who had confessed Jesus, and as a result had been cast out of the Synagogue. This parable seems to be a continuation of our Lord's remarks anent that incident. From this standpoint it seems to have had special force as teaching that whatever the Scribes and Pharisees had previously done or attempted to do in the way of shepherding the sheep they were merely hirelings, seeking their own advantage, honor of men, influence, wealth, etc., and willing to sacrifice the sheep to serve these ends. This was illustrated in the treatment of the man whose eyes had been opened: his interests as a sheep were entirely sacrificed to their personal ambitions and fear of the loss of influence through the growing popularity of Jesus.

The lesson declares that the Lord is the "door" of the sheep – the door by which the true sheep entered the true fold. All who ever preceded Jesus, claiming to be the shepherds of the sheep, were deceivers, (thieves and robbers). The word here rendered thieves contains the thought of craftiness, embezzlement, while the word robbers contains the thought of open violence, free-booting. In combining these two words our Lord represents the foes of the flock, some of them being crafty, "wolves in sheep's clothing," and some of them open, bold, aggressive. The Adversary's attacks have always [R3527 : page 89] been along both lines, and the sheep still need to be on guard against both classes of deceivers, but chiefly against the deceitful foes who cloak their ambitious designs under the ministerial garb, affecting to be caretakers of the flock, while in reality their conduct shows that self interest controls them.

The late Mr. Ruskin in his book, "Sesame and Lilies," quotes from Milton's writings a characterization of these false spiritual shepherds, as follows:

"Blind mouths: that scarce themselves know how to hold
A sheep hook, or have learned aught else, the least
That to the faithful herdsman's art belongs!

*                         *                         *

"The hungry sheep look up and are not fed,
But, swollen with the wind and the rank mist they draw,
Rot inwardly, and foul contagion spread;
Besides what the grim wolf with privy paw
Daily devours apace and nothing said."

Ruskin's comment is, "These two mono-syllables ['blind mouths'] express the precisely accurate contraries of right character in the two great offices of the Church – those of Bishop and Pastor. A Bishop means a person who sees. A Pastor means one who feeds. The most unbishoply character a man can have is, therefore, to be blind. The most unpastorly is, instead of feeding, to want to be fed – to be a mouth."


The pretended Shepherd, self-seeking, is called a thief because he not only steals or misappropriates the title of Shepherd or Pastor, but in his self-seeking greed is willing to risk the destruction of the spiritual life of the sheep that the sectarian lines may be kept up, that his own personal interests may be served. We see this illustrated to-day. How many of the Protestant Shepherds of the Lord's flock in all denominations seem willing to misrepresent the harvest message, and everybody and everything connected therewith, that thereby they may preserve their hold upon the sheep, maintain their standing and influence in the denomination, and withal get goodly clippings of the golden fleece of the flock.

The Good Shepherd is the reverse of all this – his entire thought is for the sheep, their welfare. Our Lord himself was the true Shepherd, and he demonstrated his devotion to his office by the sacrifice of everything, even life itself, on behalf of the sheep. The Lord would have his true sheep to recognize the distinction between the true and the false shepherds, and he would have his sheep of to-day similarly recognize his appointees, representatives, in the flock by the same signs. Those elders in the Church to-day who manifest the blind-mouth disposition should be avoided, should not be encouraged, should be reproved; while those whose loyalty to the Lord and the flock is continually manifested should be recognized, and, because of their likeness to the true Shepherd, they should be loved "for their works' sake" as well as for their intellectual worth. The self-sacrificing spirit, blended with humility, should be recognized by all of the sheep as the spirit of the true Shepherd, and from such alone should be expected the leading which the Good Shepherd promised to the flock throughout this Gospel age.

Our Lord defended the interests of the sheep against the false spirits and the wolves of his day, and it cost him his life. And so the faithful followers of the Lord throughout this Gospel age have been obliged either to fight with the wolves in the sheep's clothing, and thus incur their hatred, malice and opposition, in synods, presbyteries, counsels, etc., or else ignominiously flee before them by silence and allowing the sheep to be starved and misled. Our Lord could have taken this course: he could have refrained from antagonizing the Scribes and Pharisees and chief priests: he could have said, "Why should I expose myself to opprobrium and persecution and all manner of reproach and death by opposing these blind leaders of the blind?" For him to have done so would have been for him to have fled responsibility and duty. His love for the sheep would not permit this, and his faithfulness demonstrated him the true Shepherd of the flock. In this he made it plain that he was not a "hireling," not merely serving for the sake of the golden fleece, but out of a true heart with true love for the sheep.

The true Shepherd thus commends himself to all who are truly sheep, and such admire this spirit of their Master wherever they find it. That is to say, whoever are the true sheep will love and appreciate such a spirit and none other, and will thus differentiate themselves from those who are merely the followers of men, partisans, sectarians. The Lord knoweth them that are his, and they know him. The Lord appreciates those who thus recognize principle, and that class recognize, know, the Lord more and more intimately day by day, and find their love and devotion to him continually increasing. Our Lord's words on this matter are more clearly presented in the revised version, namely, "I know mine own and mine own know me, even as the Father knoweth me and I know the Father." This intimacy of acquaintance, this fellowship divine, is something which cannot be explained to others, but which is certainly appreciated by all the true sheep who know the true Shepherd, and who have been, under his guiding care, led to the green pastures and still waters and also into the fold for safety.


When the Lord said, "Other sheep I have which [R3527 : page 90] are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and they shall become one flock and one Shepherd," he was voicing the same truth which was afterward, under the guidance of the holy Spirit, elaborated by the Apostle Paul, saying that the heavenly Father hath purposed himself that in the dispensation of the fullness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ – the things in the heavens and the things upon the earth. – Eph. 1:10.

The flock which the Lord was gathering to himself at the time of this parable was not natural Israel, but spiritual Israel. Natural Israel had existed under Moses and the Law for centuries, but the Law made nothing perfect and could not give them the liberty and blessing requisite to their attaining everlasting life. They were "shut up" under the Law Covenant, as the Apostle Paul expressed it. Various pretenders came claiming that they were proper shepherds of the sheep and able to lead them to the necessary nutriment, the green pastures and the still waters of truth, but they were all [R3528 : page 90] unfaithful, thieves and robbers, who sought their personal honor and social advantage at the expense of the sheep. Our Lord became the "door" (vs. 7,9) of the sheepfold; those who accepted him were the true flock, he knew them and they knew him, and heard his voice and followed him. They were a small flock indeed compared with the large nominal Jewish system, the majority of whom followed the false teachers because they did not have the true spirit of the sheep.

All "Israelites indeed" heard and recognized the voice of the true Shepherd and became his followers. Our Lord as the "Door" gave these true sheep that access to the blessings and mercies of this Gospel age in the fullest sense which began at Pentecost and will not be finished until all the true sheep shall have heard the Shepherd's voice and shall have entered into his rest and have been fed and refreshed by following him. Jesus as the "Door" represents all the privileges and blessings of the true sheep. By him we enter into rest in the fold or resting place provided for the true sheep – the rest of faith. By him also we may go out to enjoy the liberties and refreshment to which as our Shepherd he leads his flock. We go in and out continually, enjoying the liberties and privileges secured to us by our Shepherd. We thus enjoy "the liberty wherewith Christ has made us free." – Gal. 5:1.

This rest and liberty we obtain, first, through our justification by our Lord's sacrifice of himself; and, secondly, through our consecration as his sheep and our adoption through the holy Spirit, which brings us under his care and feeding.


We who are not Jews by nature, but Gentiles, when we come into Christ are members of this same flock. This the Apostle distinctly states, declaring that God hath broken down the middle wall of partition to make of the twain one; wherefore we are no longer aliens, strangers, foreigners, but are brought nigh, and are permitted to enjoy all the privileges and blessings accorded to any by the great Shepherd. We were not the Lord's sheep in any sense of the word before, but foreigners, strangers, aliens. Hence the view that some have taken that we who are of the Gentiles or "other sheep" mentioned are now being brought into the one fold is not correct. We were not the Lord's sheep at all at the time of this parable.

The Apostle in Romans 11 pictures our relationship to natural Israel. He represents the Jewish people as the olive tree, the outgrowth of the fat root of the Abrahamic promise, the Oath-Bound Covenant, and shows that the branches or people of that nation were broken off from the relationship of the root of promise except the few who properly received the Lord Jesus. He then points out that the Gentiles are being engrafted instead of these broken off branches. Thus the Jewish flock as it previously existed was not accepted of the Lord but merely those who heard the good Shepherd's voice, and with these we, who are Gentiles, are made fellow-heirs, members of the one body, the one flock. This same thought is held before us in Revelation 7 where our Lord pictures the entire elect Church as 144,000, 12,000 from each tribe. God's election was made in respect to the twelve tribes of Israel; and, when many of all these tribes were found unworthy of the highest honor and rejected, the elect number in each tribe was filled up from believing Gentiles. We may not know to which of these tribes we have been accredited, even as we do not know which crown has been apportioned to us; but we do know that all of the elect of God, the overcomers, are thus reckoned of him as Israelites indeed in whom is no guile, and these shall be heirs with the Lord in the Kingdom.

Evidently these "other sheep" mentioned in this parable are those who will become the Lord's sheep after the present "little flock" shall have been completed. The entire Millennial age will be required for the finding of the Lord's true sheep amongst the world of mankind, including those Israelites who, because blinded by sin and error, were unworthy to be sheep of the present flock and were turned aside and blinded, but whose blindness shall be put away in the Lord's due time.

The Lord refers to this other flock of sheep, and explicitly tells us about the gathering of those sheep to his favor under him as the great Shepherd. He definitely fixes the time, and shows that the parable of the sheep and goats belongs not to the present age but to the Millennial age by the declaration with which it opens, namely, "When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: and before him shall be gathered all nations, and he shall separate them from one another, as a shepherd divideth the sheep from the goats." – Matt. 25:31,32.

It will require all of that Millennial day, that thousand years, to demonstrate who amongst the world of mankind desire to be the Lord's sheep, to hear the voice of the good Shepherd and follow him in the paths of [R3528 : page 91] righteousness and truth and to the attainment ultimately of life everlasting. Others who will not hear him shall be cut off from amongst the people – destroyed in the Second Death. (Acts 3:23.) These are the goat class of the parable, whose destruction is pictured elsewhere in the lake of fire and brimstone, which is explained to mean, the "Second Death." – Rev. 20:14.

At the close of the Millennial age all of the sheep of that age will be received into full favor with the Lord, and will be brethren to all who are the Lord's on any plane of existence. They will be brethren to the Church which is now being selected, the "elect," who will sit with the Lord in his throne during the Millennial age and be associated in the work of judging both the sheep and the goats (1 Cor. 6:2), and they will be brethren also of all the angelic hosts. When all things in heaven and in earth are brought fully into subjection to our great Shepherd, in that sense of the word all will be his sheep on whatever plane of existence they may be – the "Church" partakers of the divine nature, the angelic hosts, restored and perfected men.


The special love of the Father for the Son above all others is here referred to. The basis of that special love was the Son's complete trust in the Father and thorough harmony with and obedience to the divine will. We can see at a glance how such a noble, faithful character would be appreciated by the Father. Our Lord had always been obedient to the Father, but he learned the meaning of obedience, he learned to appreciate how much obedience might cost by the things which he suffered – his self-denial, humiliation, death. No wonder all noble hearts love this noble Shepherd, and what wonder that we who are his sheep, and who realize so great a blessing and advantage through his sacrifice for us, should love him in return.

No wonder, as the Apostle says, that we find such a love constraining our hearts to a responsive love. The Apostle exhorts us that we should have this same mind that was in Christ Jesus – not only the elders of the Church, who as under-shepherds, pastors, seek to safeguard the interests of the flock in every way, but all of the Church, seeking and attaining more and more of a likeness to the great Shepherd – have more and more of his spirit. The Apostle urges such, saying, "We ought also to lay down our lives for the brethren." This spirit should be manifested in all of the Lord's sheep, and should be considered as a prerequisite to recognition as one of the under shepherds.

Our Lord's commission was not merely to lay down his life, but also to receive it again. Evidently he had the promise of the Father of a resurrection from the dead. He intimates this in his prayer, "Father glorify thou me with the glory I had with thee before the world was." Doubtless the Master had been promised some still higher glory and honor, but he waived all reward and was content that he should please the Father and accomplish his purposes for mankind. The Father was not content to merely restore him to his previous high position of the past, but made him a partaker of the divine nature in the fullest and most absolute sense. The same promise, through our Lord, is open to us if we are faithful – "if we suffer with him we shall also reign with him," sharing his "glory, honor and immortality" – the divine nature. – 2 Pet. 1:4.

Our Lord wished it to be understood that his life, which would shortly be given was voluntarily submitted on his part. It was necessary that his disciples should know this, not merely that they might esteem their Lord more highly, but especially that they might realize him as the Redeemer whose voluntary sacrifice for our sins redeemed Father Adam and his entire race. To have confidence in the result they must have confidence in his resurrection – that the Father had so pleased and had given his sanction or authority or power to this end. Our Lord acknowledged that all the authority, all the power in connection with his resuscitation was of the Father. He was trusting implicitly to the Father, and so doing was able to lay down even life itself on behalf of the flock. The same will be true of all who would walk in his steps. In order to be faithful in the laying down of our lives, we must have faith in the Father and in the great plan of salvation which hinges upon the sacrifice of our Lord. With this matter clearly before our minds we may have grace and strength for every time of need.

[R3529 : page 91]

JOHN 11:32-45. – APRIL 9. –

Golden Text: – "Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection and the life." – John 11:25.

T has been supposed by some that the rich young ruler who came to Jesus for advice and subsequently went away very sorrowful was his friend Lazarus, who, with his sisters Martha and Mary, resided at Bethany, near Jerusalem, and at whose home our Lord was frequently entertained – a welcome guest. Lazarus was taken sick suddenly, probably with one of the fevers common to that part of the country, similar to the one from which our Lord recovered Peter's wife's mother. The illness developed very rapidly, and about the time the messenger from Bethany reached the Lord beyond Jordan, a distance of only about thirty miles, Lazarus had died. Even then our Lord made no haste to reach Bethany, but on the contrary tarried two days. According to his own statement, this matter of Lazarus' death was a part of the divine program, as was also his subsequent awakening from the tomb.

The message sent to Jesus was, "He whom thou lovest is sick." It was not a prayer that he should come to his relief nor that he would exercise power for his recovery; it was merely a statement of the facts, submitting the whole matter to the Lord. This message alone [R3529 : page 92] tells us of a deep work of grace in the hearts of the family of Bethany – that their intercourse with the Lord had been profitable, that they had learned of him. We commend the words of their message to all spiritual Israelites as the proper form for bringing before the Lord's attention our various burdens and troubles. We are not wise enough to direct the Lord as to what should be done in respect to our affairs. If we have committed our all to him, a proper faith bids us trust him, bids us rely upon the divine wisdom and love and power, which promises to make all things work together for good to us – better than we could ask for. It was quite sufficient to say, "He whom thou lovest is sick."

Let the Lord do as seems best to him. And so it is quite sufficient in respect to our dear ones who are sick, to comfort our hearts by going to the Lord in prayer and making mention of the facts, although we are sure that he knows them. Our burdens should be left at the Lord's feet and our faith should firmly trust him, come what may, and accept the results as of divine providence – meantime, of course, doing all that we know how to do reasonably and properly in the aid of the ailing ones or to rectify the troubles, just as we may be sure that the sorrowing sisters, while sending this message to the Lord, neglected not to do everything in their power for the relief of their brother from his illness, for the assuaging of his pain.

It speaks volumes for the character of Lazarus as a man that he had the love of the Lord Jesus. We remember that in the record concerning the rich young ruler it is written that after he had related to the Lord that he had at least outwardly kept all the commandments from his youth, Jesus beholding him, loved him – even though he was not in the condition of heart to make a full consecration and thus to become a true disciple. So we are bound to love all in whom we see the beauties of a noble character, whether they be of the consecrated ones or not – but our love and esteem for them of course increases as we see them recognizing their "reasonable service" and presenting their bodies living sacrifices to him who redeemed us.

Let us all more and more cultivate such elements of character as will make us lovely and lovable in the estimation not only of the brotherhood, who overlook our imperfections and cover them with the robe of Christ's righteousness, but also in the estimation of the world, that they may behold our good characters and glorify our Father in heaven on our behalf. It has been inferred that later on Lazarus did become a fully consecrated follower of the Lord.


Although the messenger brought word that Lazarus was sick, our Lord reported the matter to his disciples according to the facts of the case, for Lazarus had already died. He said, "Our friend Lazarus sleepeth." The disciples did not at first catch the import of these words, and thought that he referred to the taking of rest in sleep; and then, coming down to their comprehension, Jesus said to them plainly, "Lazarus is dead." Here we have the two standpoints of viewing death: actually, "plainly," death is the complete cessation or discontinuance of life, of being, and this discontinuance would have been eternal death, eternal non-existence for the whole human family, had it not been for the divine favor which provided the ransom-price for Adam, and incidentally for all of his race, in Christ Jesus our Lord.

In view of this purpose on God's part to ultimately call forth the dead from the tomb, he uniformly mentions the subject of death to his people as a sleep – a cessation of consciousness, which, however, would not be eternal but from which they would recover consciousness and being in the glorious resurrection morning which the Father had purposed in himself from the beginning. As many as exercised full faith and confidence in the resuscitation promised, spoke from the Lord's standpoint, and hence throughout the Scriptures we find death repeatedly mentioned as a sleep – Abraham slept with his fathers, so did all the prophets and kings of Israel, that nation having much advantage every way over other nations in that the Lord had revealed to them through the covenant promises and prophecies that, although weeping endure for a night, joy cometh in the morning.

Tarrying two days, in order that the miracle might be more pronounced, our Lord and the apostles spent portions of two more days in reaching Bethany. Martha learning of his coming, went down the road to meet him in advance. While greeting him, the burden of her salutation indicated a measure of disappointment. She was still sorrowing for the loss of her brother, and her heart was pained additionally with the thought that the Lord might have prevented this calamity, yet had not done so. She said, "Lord, if thou hadst been here my brother would not have died." How apt we all are, while laboring under the weight of sorrow, disappointment and trial, to look to the Lord and wonder why his omnipotent power does not intervene on our behalf to save us from some of the ordinary experiences common to the world, – feeling that because we are his special friends we should have had special consideration.


Let us learn a lesson on this point from the experience of Martha and Mary. Let us learn to trust the Lord even where we cannot trace his providences in all of our affairs. Let us remember the love divine which already has done so much for us, redeeming us and inducting us into the divine favor, and providing for us exceeding great and precious promises respecting the things unseen as yet. "Only believe," was the keynote of our Lord's reply to Martha. And so to each of us in the many experiences which affect our interests, we must learn the lesson of faith, confidence in the Lord's wisdom, love and power. The lesson eventually learned by Martha and Mary more than compensated them for all their tribulation, and so it will be with us if we will allow our faith to firmly trust him. In the end we shall be stronger in our faith, closer to the Lord, and full of appreciation of his favors.

In answer to Martha's expression of confidence in [R3529 : page 93] our Lord's power to have preserved her brother from the tomb, our Lord suggested the great consolation he had to offer, not only to the sorrowing sisters, but to the whole world of mankind, namely, that the divine power within him was not only such as could keep the sick from dying and heal them, but a power of resurrection – a power to bring forth from the tomb and, more than that, a power to raise up out of all the imperfections of the fallen condition, up, up, up, to the original perfection, the fullness of life enjoyed before the curse of death came upon our race.

All this is in the words, "I am the resurrection and the life," the Golden Text of our lesson. These are the great lessons for all of the Lord's people to learn: (1) That death is a just penalty because of imperfection, (2) that God has had mercy upon us as a race, and has provided a ransom; (3) that the Ransomer is the divinely appointed and commissioned and empowered one who, by and by, shall, in God's due time, bid all in the tomb come forth, and he will, then, additionally grant an opportunity to all to escape entirely from all the weaknesses and blemishes of the fall, and eventually, if they will obey him, secure the perfection of life which he purposed for all at the sacrifice of his own life.

As faith is able to recognize Jesus as the Redeemer whose sacrifice is sufficient for the satisfaction of Justice – as faith discerns that this ransom-sacrifice was made to the intent that the blessing of the Lord might reach every individual of our race, – as faith is able to look forward to the second coming of this Redeemer as the Life-Giver to his people, in that proportion faith is able to rejoice and to permit even in the presence of sorrow, sighing, tears and dying, the looking forward beyond the tomb to the glorious morning of the resurrection. In proportion as faith can lay hold of the precious promises of God's Word, it is able under the most trying conditions to sorrow, not as others who have no hope, but it is able to believe that as Jesus died and rose again as our dear Redeemer, so also all who sleep in Jesus, the world of mankind, will God bring from the dead through or by him. – 1 Thess. 4:14.

It has been assumed that there was a special heart-fellowship between our Lord and Mary, and it is in full harmony with this thought that we find the latter remaining at home until she received the message that the Lord had inquired for her. Our lesson opens with her response: she came to the Lord and fell at his feet, her [R3530 : page 93] burdened heart giving utterance to the same expression that Martha had used, "Lord, if thou hadst been here my brother would not have died." If the words contained a measure of chiding or suggestion of wounded hopes, it was a very delicate one.


Our Lord gave no suggestions of the kind usually offered in consolation to the mourner in our day. He said not, Thy brother is much better off than he was before; he is in heaven amongst the holy angels, etc. Nothing of the kind. Why? Because this would not have been the truth, and our Lord's message must be strictly true, and if error had even comforted more than truth he dare not tell the untruth. And so it is with all who are his followers – they must tell the good tidings of Jesus and the resurrection, and must do nothing to corroborate the false theories that have been received from heathendom to the effect that the dead are not dead, that they are not asleep – to the effect that at the moment of dying they are more awake, more alive and more intelligent than ever they were before. No! Those who are of the Truth must speak the truth and nothing else; they must tell plainly, "There is no work, nor knowledge, nor device, nor wisdom, in the grave whither thou goest." (Eccl. 9:10.) They must point as the only hope of a future life to Jesus, the Redeemer, and to the resurrection power by which he will ultimately deliver from the tomb all whose ransom price he paid in the sacrifice of himself.


Travelers in the East relate that the mourning practices for the dead are most distressing:

"At the very moment of death, a wild, piercing shriek, high and prolonged, a quavering wail announced the fact. This cry is taken up and repeated by the friends of the family near and afar. Every sympathizing woman friend hastens to share the mourning, and announces her approach by the conventional shriek and then adds her voice to the shrieking chorus.

"Oriental wailings before the funeral include a calling of the dead by name: 'O, my father! O, my glory! O, my strength!' as David wailed over his son, 'O, my son Absolom! My son, my son, Absolom!' The mourning continues violently for three days, and then for four more feastings and wailings are the prominent characteristics."

While a certain amount of this emotion was of a perfunctory kind, but, nevertheless, had in it the element of sympathy for the bereaved, it illustrated in a most forceful manner what the Apostle expressed, saying, "The whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together, waiting."

Such was the scene upon which our Lord entered on reaching the house of mourning on the fourth day. The grief of the sisters broke forth afresh in the Lord's presence as they thought of what might have been if the Lord had been there before their brother died. Likewise we are all more or less inclined to think of what might have been if something had been different – apt to forget that our Lord and Master has full charge of all of our affairs if we are truly, consecratedly his, and that no "if" of chance has to do with the little flock.

When Jesus looked upon the scene of sorrow, we may well suppose that it brought vividly before his mind the abject sorrow and despair of the groaning creation – "Jesus wept." Indeed we may suppose that, being perfect, all the circumstances and conditions of fallen humanity would be much more weighty and impressive upon the Lord than upon those whose minds were less acute to the situation. We are glad of those words which constitute the shortest verse in all the Bible – "Jesus wept." They tell us as no elaboration could have told of the sympathies of our Master's heart; they tell us that [R3530 : page 94] we have an High-Priest who can be touched, who was touched, who is touched still with a feeling of our infirmities, a sympathetic feeling. How unlike all the great ones of this world, whose greatness so often is represented in their coldness, stoicism, and really represents their lovelessness, their lack of sympathy. The Lord presented to us in the Scriptures is the only great and sympathetic Immanuel known to the world – "To us he is precious."

It is worthy notice, however, that the Greek word translated wept, when referring to our Lord, is not the same word used in respect to the weeping of the sorrowing sisters and the Jewish friends. Theirs was the weeping of wailing or emotion, our Lord's was the silent tear of sympathy. The friends of the sisters, who were not yet believers in Jesus' Messiahship, took note of his tears and commented, "Behold how he loved him," and these queried why he had not in some manner interfered to save him from dying.

The tear of sympathy is not to be understood as a sign of weakness. Our Master's tears proved this, and additionally we have his exhortation that we should be moved with a sympathy for others in their sorrows as well as in their joys. He himself has bidden us weep with those who weep and rejoice with those who rejoice. The cold, stoical hearts which neither weep nor rejoice are not after the fashion of our great Pattern. Let us be more and more like to him and permit our sympathies to have some reasonable measure of expression. Nevertheless let us remember that great wailing and weeping are not appropriate to us, for, as the Apostle says, "We sorrow not as others who have no hope;" our blessed hope, confidence and trust moderate our expressions of both earthly sorrows and joys as well.


The tomb of Lazarus we are told, was a cave, the doorway of which was closed by a large stone which our Lord directed should be removed. In answer to his call Lazarus came forth, still wrapped in the grave clothes or the winding sheet customary at that time. He was in a measure bound, although loosely – what we would call swathed. Our Lord directed that assistance be rendered for the setting of him free. This stupendous miracle, which testified to our Lord Jesus as the special messenger and representative of the heavenly Father and authorized to use divine power, was not one whit abated but rather intensified by the fact that he permitted those about him to do as much as was in their power in connection with the miracle – first the rolling away of the stone and subsequently the loosing of the winding sheet. Undoubtedly the same power that could restore the dead to life could much more easily roll away the stone and could subsequently have loosed the clothing.

One lesson to us in the matter is that we should not call upon nor expect divine interposition in matters which we are competent to control. It is ours to do whatever is in our power for our reasonable protection from sickness and poverty and accident. It is ours also to do everything in our power toward recovery from any of these, but it is also for us to look to and to trust the Lord in connection with all of our experiences, and to realize that he is able to make all things work together for our welfare; that with him our extremity becomes the Lord's opportunity, as his people have often proven by experience. Furthermore, true faith is inculcated and developed along these lines – a faith that is not merely credulity.


Before performing the miracle our Lord lifted his eyes to heaven in acknowledgment of the Father's power and that he was acting as the Father's agent and representative. What a manifestation we have in this of true humility. It was so in all of our Lord's utterances; he freely acknowledged that he had come to do the Father's will and not his own; that the Father was above all, and that what he did in the way of wonderful works was but the Father's power. His prayer was in the nature of a conversation as between a Son and his Father, "I know that thou hearest me always; but for the sake of them which stand by, I said it."

From this we may assume that it would have been entirely consistent on our Lord's part to have proceeded to speak as the Father's representative without offering prayer, but that he offered his petition in acknowledgment of the Father's power for the sake of the hearers that they might know that he did nothing of himself, that he claimed nothing of himself. We, his disciples, have in this a beautiful example of what should be our course on every occasion. In all our ways we should acknowledge the Lord – not only whether we eat or drink or whatsoever we do, to do it to the Lord's glory, and in a manner pleasing to him, but we should be careful to glorify him, to let it be known that we claim nothing of ourselves either as to wisdom or ability in the expounding of the divine plan. Our conduct should be simple, unassuming, devoid of boastfulness, in everything manifesting humility of heart and simplicity.

"Rather be nothing, nothing –
To him let their voices be raised;
He is the fountain of blessing,
Yes, worthy is he to be praised."

As might have been expected, this wonderful miracle, the revival of a man dead more than three days, created no little stir. No wonder that we read that many of the Jews seeing these things believed. It would be wonderful indeed that they could disbelieve under such conditions. We remember, too, that subsequently the Jews sought the more to take the life of Jesus because of the fame of this miracle. Verily, the truth of God is either a savor of life unto life or of death unto death. [R3531 : page 95] All we know of divine power and goodness either affects us favorably or unfavorably, to draw us nearer to the Lord or to separate us the more from him if we are not at heart disposed for righteousness but are controlled by envious or wicked motives.


Lazarus was not resurrected – he was merely awakened from the sleep of death – resurrection would signify the complete raising up out of sin and death conditions, to perfection and life conditions. The calling forth of Lazarus, therefore, is a good picture of what may be expected early in the Millennial reign, after the living nations shall have been to some extent enlightened and brought under the influence of the heavenly Kingdom. Then all that are in their graves, order by order, class by class, generation by generation, will come forth as Lazarus did to a measure of health and a measure of strength, but not to perfection of being. Their cases, however, will be different from his, in that his release from death was merely a temporary one: later on he died again. Those in the Millennial age, on the contrary, who will come forth under the new conditions of that Millennial Kingdom, need never die again, but instead, by hearing the voice of the Son of Man, by obeying the same, going onward step by step, they shall emerge gradually from all the weight of the curse, from all the weaknesses and imperfections of the present dying condition, to the full life and perfection and joy of the life-eternal condition, at the close of the Millennial age.

Theirs will be the resurrection by judgments, by disciplines, by corrections in righteousness – by their gradual attainment under the systems of rewards and punishments then in vogue – to all the glorious perfections of human nature, as our Lord declared, "Though dead, yet shall they live." This will include not only the dead in the tombs, but also the other dead who buried their dead – those who are now nine-tenths dead and under sentence of death, but who, contrasting themselves with those in the tomb, speak of themselves as alive. Then, whosoever living shall be obedient to the Lord at heart shall never die, but will be granted an entrance to the eternal conditions beyond the Millennial age, approved by the Father as true sheep. – Matt. 25:34.


It would be preposterous to suppose that Lazarus was in heaven for four days and that the Lord in mercy and compassion called him away from blessed scenes there. The tears of Jesus and his failure to offer any such explanation of death, no less than his awaking of his friend Lazarus as a mark of his sympathy and love, all forbid the thought that Lazarus had been in heaven. Besides this, we have the Lord's positive declaration that "no man has ascended up to heaven." (John 3:13.) Again the uniform testimony of Scripture is that death is death, and further our Lord's declaration is that when Lazarus was dead he was asleep. In his sleep of death the four days were but as a moment; his awaking thought was next to the one he had when he fell asleep in death.


Stupendous as this miracle was, we ourselves see in some respects still greater miracles. Many of the Lord's people have seen in themselves and in each other great transformations spoken of in Scripture as passing from death unto life. At our recent New York Convention one person in attendance spoke to the Editor after the meeting about consecration, and remarked that for some years she had been an infidel, estranged from the Lord and his book by her acquaintance with some whose conduct in life caused her to lose all faith in Christianity. She explained that the remarkable conversion of her sister-in-law by the Truth had drawn her attention to it. She added, "I never saw so great a change in any human being in my life, nor did I suppose such a change possible. It led me to believe there was a power in Christianity, and I began to investigate the religious teachings set forth in MILLENNIAL DAWN which had so powerfully affected my sister-in-law. I am convinced of its truth, and am considering the subject of consecration, and trust that you will pray for me."

"So let our lives and tongues express
The glorious Gospel we profess;
So let thy glories in us shine,
That all may know that we are thine."

[R3531 : page 95]


DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL: – Herewith I hand you some interesting readings from the Revised Swedish Bible. Yours, KIHLGREN.

Isa. 21:12. "The watchman answereth: Morning has come, and still it is night. If ye will ask more, [than the question in verse 11] ye may ask; come back again" [for more information?].

Isa. 28:8-13. "For all tables are full of nauseating vomits, not a clean spot is found. Who then [asks the class mentioned in verse 7?] is it he desires to learn understanding, and who can he make to give attention to his preaching? – Are we then recently weaned from the mother's milk, recently taken from the mother's breast? For it is nagging upon nagging, nagging upon nagging, prating upon prating, prating upon prating, a little here, a little there [as if this class should say: 'What does he take us for? – we are no babies either; it was not yesterday we discarded the old-fashioned theory of the fall and the redemption of man, etc., – we are full-grown mature Higher Critics; and yet there are a few old fogies who never let us alone, but are nagging at us ceaselessly, giving out tracts, papers and books, which represent us before the public as deceivers,' etc.] Well, yes, through stammering lips and in a strange language shall he speak to this people, he who nevertheless has said unto them: 'Here is the place of rest, let the weary get rest; here is the place where refreshment is given,' but such they would not hear. And thus the Lord's Word shall be for them, 'nagging upon nagging, nagging upon nagging, prating upon prating, prating upon prating, a little here, a little there, so that they, as they walk on, fall backward and are crushed, become ensnared and captured." [Refusing to accept God's grand plan for salvation, which would give them rest, they are annoyed by those who are pointing out its beauty, which to them is merely prating, and the result is that they fall completely into the snares of the adversary].

The context seems to favor the thought brought out in this rendering, though differing from the English rendering.