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February 15th
ZION'S
WATCH TOWER
and
Herald of Christ's Presence

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

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

VOL. XXXVFEBRUARY 1No. 3
A. D. 1914 – A. M. 6042
CONTENTS
The Anointed – The Messiah – The Christ 35
The Mystery of Christ 36
Gifts Vs. Fruits of the Spirit 36
Hindrances to Fulness of the Spirit 37
Anointing and Begetting 37
Two Classes of First-Borns 38
Godliness Attracts Persecution 39
Specially Godly Are Specially Persecuted 39
Professed Christians Persecuted 40
The Solitary Way (Poem) 40
1913 – Reports from Foreign Branches – 1913 41
"Where Your Treasure Is" 44
Seek First the Kingdom 45
The Faithful Are Watchful 45
Re the Lord's Second Presence 45
Some Interesting Letters 47
Heard Him Lecture 70 Times 47
Experience of Two Colporteurs 47
Sword of Truth Flashing Right and Left 47

'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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THIS JOURNAL AND ITS SACRED MISSION
T
HIS Journal is one of the prime factors or instruments in the system of Bible Instruction, or "Seminary Extension," now being presented in all parts of the civilized world by the WATCH TOWER BIBLE & TRACT SOCIETY, chartered A.D. 1881, "For the Promotion of Christian Knowledge." It not only serves as a class room where Bible Students may meet in the study of the divine Word, but also as a channel of communication through which they may be reached with announcements of the Society's Conventions and of the coming of its traveling representatives styled "Pilgrims," and refreshed with reports of its Conventions.

Our "Berean Lessons" are topical rehearsals or reviews of our Society's published "Studies," most entertainingly arranged, and very helpful to all who would merit the only honorary degree which the Society accords, viz., Verbi Dei Minister (V.D.M.), which translated into English is, Minister of the Divine Word. Our treatment of the International S.S. Lessons is specially for the older Bible Students and Teachers. By some this feature is considered indispensable.

This Journal stands firmly 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." (I Pet. 1:19; I Tim. 2:6.) Building up on this sure foundation the gold, silver and precious stones (I Cor. 3:11-15; 2 Pet. 1:5-11) of the Word of God, its further mission is to – "Make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery which...has been hid in God,...to the intent that now might be made known by the Church the manifold wisdom of God" – "which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men as it is now revealed." – Eph. 3:5-9,10.

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

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

PUBLISHED BY
WATCH TOWER BIBLE AND TRACT SOCIETY
CHARLES T. RUSSELL, PRESIDENT
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[R5401 : page 34]

PILGRIM BROTHER HAYDEN SAMSON – DECEASED

Many of our readers knew and dearly loved Brother Hayden Samson, who has served the Lord and the Brethren under the auspices of the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society for the past fourteen years. For several years past he has been in feeble health – yet persevered to lay down his life in the service of the Lord, the Truth and the Brethren. Returning home he experienced a severe attack of indigestion January Twenty-Fourth. He got relief, however, and went to bed as usual. The next morning, Sunday, his body was found in bed apparently asleep. He had passed beyond "in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye," with evidently no struggle, no pain. We rejoice with the dear Brother, believing that he has gone before to the heavenly condition – where so many of us are hoping ere long to join the Savior and him and all the members of the Body of Christ. page 34

BETHEL HYMNS FOR MARCH

After the close of the hymn the Bethel family listens to the reading of "My Vow Unto the Lord," then joins in prayer. At the breakfast table the MANNA text is considered. Hymns for March follow:

(1) 266; (2) 47; (3) 12; (4) 325; (5) Vow; (6) 313; (7) 60; (8) 310; (9) 130; (10) 110; (11) 7; (12) 27; (13) 191; (14) 87; (15) 145; (16) 129; (17) 78; (18) 4; (19) 105; (20) 16; (21) 155; (22) 160; (23) 240; (24) 260; (25) 267; (26) 40; (27) 324; (28) 88; (29) 14; (30) 39; (31) 170.

[R5391 : page 35]

THE ANOINTED – THE MESSIAH – THE CHRIST

T
HE teaching of the Law, in type and testimony, is to the effect that God purposed to raise up a great Priest, who would also be a King; and that this priestly King and kingly Priest should cancel the sins of the people, and be invested with power to rule, and with authority as a Mediator to help them back to God. To the surprise of the typical people, Israel, instead of assuming the office of Priest and King in conjunction, He merely died!Luke 24:20,21.

Then came the time for the Holy Spirit to reveal to the Church what had previously been a mystery; for when God had through the Prophets spoken of Messiah as a King upon His Throne, He had declared that which would be mysterious to the people – would not be easily understood. God had purposely kept His Plan a secret until the due time for revealing it should come. The secret was – "Christ in you, the hope of glory." – Colossians 1:26,27.

In other words, our Lord Jesus is, primarily, the Anointed One and, according to the Scripture testimony, is very highly exalted. But He was not the completion of the Divine arrangement regarding the Anointed. The Heavenly Father purposed not to have Jesus alone, but that He should be the Head of the Anointed, and the Church the Body. (Eph. 1:22,23; 5:29-32; Col. 1:24.) This was the Mystery. The great Messiah was to bless the world as the antitypical Prophet, Priest, and King. God appointed Jesus as the Head, and elected certain saintly ones to be the members of His Body. Until this Body of Christ was complete, the blessing promised to Abraham could not come upon the world. – Gal. 3:16,29. [R5392 : page 35]

The terms upon which any may come into membership in Christ's Body – may be members of the anointed Priest and King – are that they walk in His steps. If we desire this privilege, we must present our bodies living sacrifices, as He presented His. Additionally, we must have Him as our Advocate, that we may be enabled to fill up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ. So, the Apostle says, we were called to suffer with Christ, that we might reign with Him. – Col. 1:24; 2 Tim. 2:12.

Not until this work is completed can there be Restitution to the world. The blessing of the world cannot begin until this great Priest-King is complete and inducted into office. Then as the Mediator of the New Covenant, He will bring the promised blessings to mankind in general. The entire Scriptures seem to give this thought, and this alone. In no other way can we explain why, after God's promise to send a Redeemer, and after that Redeemer had come, and had died, "the Just for the unjust," the work of Restitution (Acts 3:19-21) should not have immediately proceeded. Throughout this Age there has been the work of selecting the Church. In the immediate future are the Times of Restitution, when the Lord, at His Second Coming, shall have received His members to Himself on the plane of glory.

The Scriptures declare that our Lord Jesus was holy, harmless, undefiled and separate from sinners. Hence He would need no sin-offering on His own behalf. Yet the Scriptures say that He needed first to offer for Himself, and then for the people. (Heb. 7:26,27.) Here we see clearly shown the Church as a part of Himself – different from the world in general.

The entire work of the Church at the present time is the sacrifice of the human life. As Jesus will be the King of Glory, so we shall be the under-kings; as He will be the great Priest, so we shall be the under-priests. The parallel is found throughout the entire Scriptures. If our understanding of this were taken away, we should be practically in the same darkness as we were before we got the Truth. The Mystery is that we are to be associated in the sufferings of Christ now, and in His glory in the future. Whoever has not yet found this key has not yet found the Plan of God, in its simplicity and beauty.

God ordained that the kings of Israel should be anointed, and that the High Priest of Israel should be especially anointed. We are to remember that there is an antitypical King and an antitypical Priest – Christ, the great Prophet, Priest and King – who is to bring blessing to the human family as a whole. We perceive that in the type there was an under-priesthood, and the Apostle points out that there is an antitypical under-priesthood associated with Jesus and His work.

The word anointed is the English translation of the Hebrew word Messiah, and its equivalent in the Greek is Christos, Christ. So, then, our thoughts properly turn to Christ as the Anointed of God. He is to do the great work appointed by the Father. We look back and see when He received His anointing. It was not when He was in the Heavenly courts, nor when He became a human being. He was not yet the Anointed One, though He was in full harmony with the Holy Spirit of God.

But there came a certain experience to our Lord when He was thirty years of age. At that time He consecrated Himself to do the Father's will and work. Then [R5392 : page 36] it was that He received the special anointing. This constituted Him in an incipient sense the anointed King and Priest of God. Still He was not ready to take His great power and reign; but if He proved faithful in carrying out His covenant, He would in due time become in the fullest sense the great Anointed of God, would reign over the earth for a thousand years, and subsequently would have further great honors and privileges. We can see all this very clearly portrayed in respect to our Redeemer.

THE MYSTERY OF CHRIST

To whom, then, does the Apostle in 1 John 2:27 refer in the words ye and you? The Heavenly Father purposed, as previously stated, that more than our Lord Jesus should constitute this Anointed One. He purposed that the Lord Jesus should be the Head of an anointed company, who should constitute His Body. And this is implied in the type in the under-priesthood, who received a measure of the anointing oil. They prefigured the real Priesthood to come: "Ye are a Royal Priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar people, that ye should show forth the praises of Him who hath called you out of darkness into His marvelous light." – 1 Peter 2:9.

And as we further study, we find that this is the Mystery mentioned in the Scriptures: to wit, that the great Messiah so long promised should be composed of many individuals; and that these many individuals, with the exception of the Head, should be gathered out from the children of wrath, from fallen mankind, and should be justified through the merit of their Head – the merit of His human sacrifice.

All, then, who have joined the Lord are counted as members of that one Body, "the Church of the Living God," "the Church of the first-born," whose names are "written in Heaven." (1 Tim. 3:15; Heb. 12:23.) Looking back to the institution of the Church, we see that it could not be instituted until Jesus had presented Himself as a sacrifice, that the merit of His sacrifice might be made applicable to all those who would become members of His Body – those who would make the same consecration unto death that He had made, and who would then walk in His footsteps.

At that very time there were some of this class waiting. They had been Jesus' disciples, hearkening to His words. They believed His testimony that if they would take up their cross and follow Him they should partake of His glory. Under the influence of this promise they became His followers. But they could not receive the anointing until He had made satisfaction for their sins. Therefore our Lord instructed them to wait at Jerusalem until this blessing came upon them. The Scriptures tell us that the anointing came upon them at Pentecost. It came from the Father through Christ, after His ascension. Indeed, St. Paul tells us that all blessings come from the Father, who is the Fountain of blessings; and all come through the Son, who is the Channel. – 1 Corinthians 8:6.

Just what the anointing is, is difficult for us to comprehend or to explain. Only in proportion as we comprehend it can we make it plain to others. The Lord has endeavored to make it as plain as possible to us by the use of various terms and figures. He calls it a begetting, in the sense that a new life is started. The spiritual nature begins in us at the moment we receive this begetting. And whoever receives it cannot retain it unless he grows and has the Lord's Spirit perfected in him.

VARIOUS QUALITIES OF THE HOLY SPIRIT

This Spirit is spoken of in the Scriptures from various standpoints – apparently with a view to giving us a conception of it, and with the thought that it is a difficult matter to grasp. It is called the Spirit of Truth. No one can have the Holy Spirit and be in ignorance of God; and his growth in spiritual things will be in proportion to his growth in knowledge. If he does not grow in knowledge, he cannot grow in the Spirit; therefore this Spirit is called the Spirit of the Truth.

It is called also the spirit of a sound mind; for our judgments are all imperfect and human and naturally, therefore, contrary in some respects to the mind of the Lord. And the transforming influence which gives us a new view of matters and enables us to see things from God's standpoint is the influence of the Holy Spirit; therefore, it is called the spirit, or disposition, of a sound mind.

It is called the spirit of love; for only in proportion as we cultivate this Godlike quality can we receive this spirit. Whoever has not the spirit of love cannot have the Holy Spirit. Love is necessary before we can receive this Spirit. God is Love. And so all must be of this disposition who would be His – they must be in sympathy, in harmony with Him.

It is also called the spirit of obedience in the sense that those who possess this Spirit desire to do the will of God. It is an anointing in the sense that it is the qualification by which God recognizes us as His children and as those who are heirs of His promises and who are to consider themselves His ambassadors. He recognizes only those who are thus designated by the Holy Spirit. These are to fill the office of kings and priests.

These various definitions and descriptions of the power and influence of the Spirit enable us to better understand the matter. The term Holy Spirit stands in a broad sense for any holy influence or power or disposition emanating from God. The phrase covers the thought of the spirit of Truth and the spirit of righteousness, because all that is true and right is of Divine arrangement and order. This is the Holy Spirit, or holy influence, or holy power, then, that works in any way that God may choose. It may be through the Word of Truth given out through the printed page, or it may be made manifest through the influence of the life and example of some of God's people – but in whatever way it operates, it always operates for good.

GIFTS VS. FRUITS OF THE SPIRIT

Because the matter was so hard to understand, the Lord, in the first place, gave the early Church special signs, which were called gifts. Some received the gift of tongues, some the gift of performing miracles, and some the special gift of healing. Then there were other gifts that the Lord gave, such as Apostleship, etc. But these different gifts were merely manifestations of the Holy Spirit at that time. The gifts were not the Holy Spirit, but were manifestations of the Holy Spirit. After they had accomplished their work in the early Church, those gifts passed away. This does not mean that the Holy Spirit ceased to be the begetting power amongst the Lord's people; but unless there had been some such manifestation of the power of God in the beginning, we would not have been so well able to understand the facts. Jesus, before Pentecost, communicated His Spirit to His disciples and enabled them to work miracles. – Luke 10:17-20.

A measure of the Spirit is given to all the Lord's children to be profited by, to make use of. And so we see that when the gifts of the Holy Spirit passed away, the fruits of the Spirit remained, to be manifested and developed. "The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance" [R5393 : page 37] (Galatians 5:22,23); and a person after receiving the Holy Spirit will begin to manifest this fruit of the Spirit. If one does not manifest this fruit, there is every reason to doubt if he has been begotten of the Spirit.

If a person has some of these qualities, we are to remember that some are naturally quite gentle, meek. We are not, therefore, to think it a proof of the possession of the Holy Spirit, if one has a little meekness and gentleness. He might have these qualities naturally. But we should expect that when a knowledge of the Truth comes, instead of being heady and puffed up, he would be all the more gentle and meek. Wherever we see a boastful, heady, haughty spirit, unloving, unkind, etc., we would have reason to think that the Holy Spirit had not been received, or was not making proper development in that heart.

This is a matter regarding which the Lord does not allow us to judge others; but He expects us to judge ourselves. Whoever has this Holy Spirit should develop it. Those who have been begotten of the Holy Spirit had previously come into the proper attitude of mind to receive it, and the Lord is pleased to begin there the work which is so difficult for us to understand. This Spirit of God brings rest, peace, joy, because we have submitted ourselves to God. And this peace and joy should increase more and more, as we are more and more filled with the Holy Spirit.

HINDRANCES TO FULNESS OF THE SPIRIT

The Bible tells us that the Lord Jesus had the Spirit without measure. But we, in our imperfect state, are not able to receive the Holy Spirit in the same measure. If our hearts are entirely emptied, then they may be made the fuller. But if there be errors of doctrine in our mind and heart, these will prevent us from receiving the fulness of the Holy Spirit. Gradually the New Creature will cast out the earthly mind, and will get rid of the errors of doctrine, etc., that have been hindrances. And as we get rid of these we shall be made partakers of the Holy Spirit in an abounding measure.

The Holy Spirit that we receive of Him is our assurance that we belong to the Lord. And as long as this Spirit abides in us, it is a witness and a guarantee that we are still the Lord's. Both classes, the Little Flock and the Great Company, receive the anointing of the Lord, the begetting of the Holy Spirit. The Apostle says that "we are all called in the one hope of our calling." (Eph. 4:4.) We all have received this Anointing of the Holy Spirit, or we could not belong to the Body of Christ at all. It is now a matter of development.

Those who continue to develop in the Spirit of the Lord will attain a place on the Throne with Jesus. But there will be some who will not be accounted worthy to reign with Him; yet they have received of the Lord this anointing, this begetting. These will not be of the Body of Christ, because they failed to progress on account of lack of zeal in carrying out their covenant.

In the type of the high priest the anointing oil ran down over the garments. In the antitype the anointing of our Lord Jesus has flowed down over all the Body since Pentecost, giving us this special relationship with the Heavenly Father. The anointing which comes upon the Lord's people must sooner or later affect their outward conduct by manifestations of greater meekness, patience, brotherly-kindness, affection and generosity of word and deed. All of this is illustrated in the anointing oil used upon the kings and priests of Israel, which typified the Spirit from which we have an anointing, or lubrication.

But this smoothing and softening of character must not be expected to take place suddenly, as was the case with the change in our minds; on the contrary, it will come gradually. Nevertheless, the renewed will is to take control of the earthly body and impart its spirit and disposition to it so far as possible, and should begin the work at once. If the spirit, or disposition, of love to God dwell in one richly, it will soon be manifest to some extent. Let us be constantly on the alert to grow in the spirit of love and obedience, and to let the Spirit of Christ dwell in us richly and abound.

CONSECRATION AND BEGETTING

No one can be a member of the New Creation before being anointed of the Holy Spirit, or begotten of the Holy Spirit. The purport of the Scriptures is that a double work is necessary, the one part applying to the flesh, the other to the New Creature. That which is sacrificed is not the New Creature, and that which is anointed is not the old creature. We repeat: It is the New Creature that is anointed, and it is the old creature that is sacrificed.

The anointing and the begetting of the Holy Spirit are practically the same thing and quickly follow justification. It is as justified men that we are baptized into death, and it is as members of the New Creation that we are constituted members of the Ecclesia, or Body of Christ. It is the Father's acceptance of us that is the basis of our begetting of the Holy Spirit, our anointing.

While the two terms, begetting and anointing, are used to represent what is to us practically the same thing, they are two different figures. The begetting thought is one that pertains to the state of the new life, the state of the new nature. The anointing thought pertains to the office. God is calling out a people to become joint-heirs with Christ in the Kingdom. The anointing is the Divine recognition of them as kings and priests. So far as we are concerned, the matter is represented by both expressions.

The word Christ signifies anointed. God has declared that He will have an anointed King and High Priest to be His Agent in the blessing of the world. He has declared that that great King is, primarily, the Lord Jesus Christ. He also declares that instead of the Lord Jesus being the sum-total of the Anointed One, it is His good pleasure that there shall be members added to Him. And the adding of these members has been the completing of this Anointed One.

Our coming into the Body is our coming under the anointing. One is a member of the Anointed the instant he is begotten. In thinking of the begetting and the anointing, we are merely viewing the matter from two different angles. We of today were not anointed eighteen hundred years ago, although the anointing came at that time upon the Church. The anointed office may be forfeited, without the spirit-begotten life being forfeited, as in the case of the Great Company.

But the instant we are individually inducted into that Body, that instant we come under the anointing. "The anointing you have received of Him abideth in you." Our share of it is just as much a personal matter as was the begetting. Let us repeat the statement: Our begetting is individual – our baptism, or anointing, is collective, but the one is as personal as the other.

SAME ANOINTING FOR BOTH JESUS AND THE CHURCH

The anointing that came upon the Church at Pentecost and that ran down upon all added Jewish members subsequently, was the same anointing that Jesus received at Jordan, the same anointing that was later poured out [R5393 : page 38] upon the Gentiles, as manifested first in the case of Cornelius and his friends, when "the Holy Spirit fell upon all them which heard the Word" at the mouth of St. Peter. It is the same anointing that has come down throughout the Age upon all the members of the Body – all the one anointing.

But while it is the same anointing, or baptism, yet Cornelius had no share in the anointing, or baptism, at Pentecost, nor had the disciples any share in the anointing at Jordan; for it did not become a personal matter to any member until he was individually begotten, and thus inducted into the Body. To our understanding the one thought appertains to both of these different features, as illustrating different parts of the process.

At the beginning, Jehovah God foreknew and foreordained that one hundred and forty-four thousand should constitute the Anointed One, of which Jesus is the Head. And He made the arrangement that all those begotten of the Spirit should thereby come into that Body, and be counted as its members. These have their names written as such in the Lamb's Book of Life. But He also made the arrangement with them that if any of them failed to keep the terms of their covenant, they would cease to be members of that Body class. And this class evidently will in glory consist of the one hundred and forty-four thousand, although many other thousands have been associated with them all through the Gospel Age; not all, however, have maintained their standing.

"To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with Me in My Throne." (Rev. 3:21.) The grand outcome of the matter, the fixity of the matter, is in the future. All those who come to the Lord, come through consecration, and are for the time being counted in as members of this anointed class. And the anointing will abide with them so long as they continue in this condition of obedience.

DOUBLE RELATIONSHIP TO CHRIST

The expression, begetting of the Spirit, then, is used in the Scriptures to describe that personal experience by which God accepts the individual as a New Creature, and starts the new nature. This new nature subsequently prospers, develops, and if faithful will be born of the Spirit. The terms begetting and birth are used symbolically [R5394 : page 38] to represent the beginning and the completion of the New Creature.

The baptism, or anointing, of the Spirit, of course, relates to the same Holy Spirit, and in some measure to the same experiences as the begetting, but from a different angle. The baptism of the Holy Spirit is not a thing that comes to us individually, but collectively. The baptism of the Holy Spirit came upon the Church at Pentecost and was not repeated day by day, nor ever, except in the case of Cornelius, the first Gentile convert, and "his kinsmen and near friends," whom he had called together in his house to hear the words from the lips of the Apostle Peter. At that time a similar baptism to that of Pentecost was granted – "the Holy Spirit fell upon all them which heard the Word" (Acts 10:24,44), indicating that the Gentiles also were to have an opportunity to become members of the Anointed.

The word baptism signifies immersion. St. Paul explains that we are all baptized, or immersed, or anointed, by the one Spirit into one Body. The anointing, or baptism, of the Spirit came first to our Lord Jesus, extended down to the Church at Pentecost, and has been with the Church as an anointing ever since. All of us who come to God, by Christ, confessing our sins and asking forgiveness through His merit, and who yield ourselves to be dead with Him, by baptism into His death, are immersed into membership in His Body, thus coming under the anointing.

The result of this action is two-fold; we become, first of all, members of Christ in the flesh, and He accepts us and treats us as such. We are first baptized, or immersed, into death – His death, His Baptism. Then the figure changes; and we are raised up out of this baptism into death, as New Creatures. Thereafter our flesh is counted as His flesh. So our relationship to Christ is two-fold: one appertaining to the flesh, the other to the spirit.

Very many have not noticed this double relationship to Christ – as New Creatures, and also in the flesh. The force of this is brought to us in the words of the glorified Christ to Saul of Tarsus: "Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou ME?...I am Jesus whom thou persecutest." (Acts 9:4,5.) Thus our Lord declared that the persecution of the Church in the flesh was a persecution of Himself. What the Church suffers is a part of the sufferings of Christ. The sufferings of Christ will not be filled up until the last member of His Body shall have finished His course.

THE LORD'S DECISION STILL FUTURE

Our membership in the spiritual Body of Christ is also two-fold. First we have a tentative membership at the present time – though we are accepted of God as if it were complete. Thus the moment of the acceptance of our consecration is the moment when we receive the Holy Spirit. We are consecrated with Christ unto death – we are risen with Him as New Creatures, sharers with Him in His resurrection. And yet this number, begotten of the Holy Spirit and thus associated with Christ in membership in the spiritual Body, contains three classes: (1) The Little Flock, which will be the Body of Christ beyond the veil, the "more than conquerors"; (2) the Great Company, who will fail of being of that highest class, but who will be companions of the Bride class (Psalm 45:14); (3) some who will become reprobates and go into the Second Death.

It is not for us at the present time to pass judgment upon any one. It is not for us to say that this one or that one belongs to the Little Flock or to the Great Company. According to the Scriptural instructions, we know that the Lord will not make public His decision of this matter until the end of this Age. Then He will make a decision as to those who will receive the higher nature and those who will receive the subordinate nature.

We are all "called in the one hope of our calling" (Eph. 4:4), and it is for each of us to make our calling and election sure. Our trials, our difficulties, our weaknesses, are so different that only the Lord will know or can determine who are worthy. The Apostle declares that He would not even judge himself, let alone others. There is one that judgeth, even Christ.

TWO CLASSES OF FIRST-BORNS

The Church of the First-borns, that is to say, all who will attain to perfection of life, everlasting life, as the First-born company, are in comparison with the world a small number. The picture of humanity that our Lord gave in the Sermon on the Mount represented the world of mankind in general as going down the broad road to destruction. Then He depicted a narrow way leading to life, a way that He Himself opened up and made possible. He tells us that of those who find this narrow way only a few, comparatively, will enter it and walk in it.

In another Scripture we are told that all who go on the broad way will ultimately be brought to a knowledge [R5394 : page 39] of the Truth, and by Messiah's Kingdom will be enlightened and blessed with an opportunity for coming into harmony with God; and that in that time there will be a Highway for their return to human perfection. Here, then, we find three ways. In the present Age, however, there is only one way leading to life.

Examining what the Scriptures say as to who will gain life everlasting as a result of the present life, we find that merely the Church of the First-borns get this blessing. The life that will come to the world will be attained gradually during the thousand years, when step by step they will rise up, up, UP to perfection. But the life that is offered now must be striven for under adverse conditions. We are to receive it by (1) begetting, and (2) resurrection to perfection. This resurrection we shall receive at the close of this Gospel Age.

The Scriptures show us that of the two classes who will attain this great blessing, one class will come off conquerors and get spiritual life, but not the highest. The other class will come off "more than conquerors," and reach resurrection on the highest plane. These will be of the Divine nature. In this class we are striving to have a place – to share with Christ in the Chief Resurrection. Those who lag behind and are careless of their consecration vows will nevertheless be finally put to the test. Matters will so narrow down with them that they will be obliged to determine whether they will prove their loyalty to God or not. Those among them who wilfully sin will go into the Second Death. Those who strive for everlasting life will be brought to perfection in a great time of trouble, even though they will lose the great prize of joint-heirship with Christ.

[R5394 : page 39]

GODLINESS ATTRACTS PERSECUTION
"Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution." – 2 Tim. 3:12.
G
ODLINESS represents in general the condition of righteousness, opposition to sin, as God is opposed to sin – a condition in harmony with justice, as He is just; generosity and kindness and love, as He is generous and kind and loving. There are kind, generous and noble characters in the world who are not Christians. These may have more or less of opposition from others who are evilly disposed – as darkness always opposes light; yet these noble people exercise moderation in their righteousness – they are not righteous overmuch. They do not go to an extreme in their religion, as it is sometimes expressed. These fine characters might occasionally get some persecution, politically or otherwise; but even the enemies of such would have respect for them.

But the Apostle in our text limits persecution to "those who live godly in Christ Jesus." What is the difference between living godly and living godly in Christ Jesus? We answer that because of their special relationship to Christ Jesus, God's people have a special enlightenment. They see more clearly the principles of God's Justice. They have a more exacting rule by which their lives are governed. Others do not see these deeper things of the Divine Plan and the special arrangement God has made with the Church.

Those who are "in Christ Jesus" have an intelligent knowledge that they have entered into a Covenant of Sacrifice. They realize that they are not to compromise their religion in any way; they are not to compromise with sin, nor with the world. They must uphold the principles of righteousness, even to the detriment of their own earthly interests.

The godly not in Christ Jesus – those who have a measure of Godlikeness – may indulge in a great many things that would not be wrong for the world – not sinful, not immoral, not unkind. With the Christian, however, all of his time, talent, influence, money, are consecrated to the one service, according to what he understands to be the Lord's Word and the spirit of that Word. The worldly man who is righteous might feel perfectly free to give of his money for various causes and purposes, that would be reasonable and proper in themselves; while the Christian would ask himself, What is the Lord's will, the Lord's way?

THE CHRISTIAN STEWARD RESTRICTED

The Christian is restricted in his use of money; for he always considers as to how the Lord would have him use it. The Christian uses his money for the preaching of the Gospel and the publishing of it in various ways; while other people might use their money for large benefactions and endowment of colleges. The Christian would reason: There are many opportunities for people to get education along earthly lines, and I believe the Lord would have me as His child to use His money to help people get spiritual education. [R5395 : page 39]

Likewise in the use of his time; the natural man might say, We will have a certain evening for attending a good opera. We will not go to any disreputable place, but we will spend a certain amount each season on the opera. Or, we will be patrons of art and music and literature. We must adopt a course that will win the approval of society. That will be the wise thing to do. But the Christian says, My time, my money are consecrated to the Lord. I am His steward, I can use these in a better way. A worldly man may be a patron of art and spend a thousand dollars – or ten thousand dollars – on a single painting, because he wants art to flourish. Or he might buy a fine piece of sculpture to adorn his home, but this is not the course for me. I must consider the Lord's will for me as His servant.

The Christian has limitations which the worldly do not have. But we are glad for all good men and good women, who can be good and noble even though not in Christ Jesus. We are glad to esteem them. There are noble people in the world. There are some godly ones outside the Church, godly to a certain degree; and they are likely to come to see something of the Truth, if they are really noble characters. The godly of this world will get a blessing in the Restitution time. Every godly thing that they have done, every act of generosity, will get its reward. And by cultivating their higher sentiments, they will have fewer steps to retrace.

SPECIALLY GODLY ARE SPECIALLY PERSECUTED

The persecutions which come to the godly in Christ Jesus are special persecutions. We are not to expect much of this from the Body of Christ. A man is not expected to use his fist to strike his own eye, nor is it to be expected that one hand will injure the other hand. It may be that the skin on one hand is rough, and will sometimes scratch the other one. But we cannot be members of the same Body and persecute each other. Persecution is something that is intended and pursued, or followed up. Persecution is not merely one act or one word – it is a succession of unkind words and acts with a view to punishing some one for adhering to an opinion or course of conduct. [R5395 : page 40]

So persecution comes from a certain class called by Jesus the world. But the class that Jesus called the world are those who had a form of godliness, but did not have the power thereof. Christianity has its counterfeits, as has money. So the Apostle speaks of a class who would take the name of the Lord upon them and misuse that name. And there are people in the world today who do not know the difference between the genuine and the counterfeit – between Truth and error – and who do not want to know, and who keep out of the way of being told. They somehow know that there would come a certain measure of condemnation to themselves if they recognized the real facts and did not act in accordance with them.

They are not all bad people by any means. There are very many good people among the tares; but there is no real wheat among the tares – no real nutriment. But these tares pose as the Church of Christ; the tare systems pose as Christianity. And from this class usually come the persecutions. They try to crowd out the wheat, or to choke it and make it unfruitful. It was so in our Lord's day. Those to whom the Lord referred as persecutors were not the Gentile world of His day, but the worldly ones of the Jews – those who were not fully consecrated to the Lord, but who thought they were.

Nicodemus was a fine character, and Gamaliel was a fine character – and so were a great many who did not become Christ's disciples at all. Evidently many were seeking after righteousness; as, for instance, the young man who came to the Lord and asked Him, "Good Master, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life?" The Lord answered, "Thou knowest the commandments." The young man said, "Master, all these have I observed from my youth up." He was a noble character, and Jesus looking on him loved him, even though he was not a disciple. And Jesus said to him. "One thing thou lackest; go thy way, sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in Heaven; and come, take up thy cross, and follow Me." But he went away sorrowful. He did not want to become a member in Christ Jesus. He did not want to give everything to the Lord. He was very rich – "had great possessions," and he preferred to hold on to his wealth. – Mark 10:17-22.

There were others who went through many of the forms and ceremonies, and who kept the various admonitions of the Law, and its feasts and fasts; but they were not the "Israelites indeed in whom was no guile." And later they became the persecutors of Christ and those who walk in His steps of sacrifice.

PROFESSED CHRISTIANS PERSECUTORS

And so those who live godly in Christ Jesus have their persecutions, not so much from the worldly class as from professing Christians. There is a class in Churchianity today that has a great deal of pride and self-satisfaction. They are upholding a large institution. If anything seems to be inimical to that institution, they are wrathful and wish to persecute. Some say respecting those who proclaim Present Truth and who live saintly lives as followers of Jesus Christ: If we let these people alone and let them teach these things, all that we have been upholding for centuries will crumble. Did not Luther hand down Truth to us? Did not Calvin give the Church Truth? Have we not the teachings of Wesley? No, no; we will not have these "new doctrines"!

But we see that these people are persecuting the Truth and its representatives because of misunderstanding. We should have a great deal of sympathy and not feel specially angry with them. This does not mean that we should be glad of persecution – no persecution "for the present seemeth joyous, but grievous." (Heb. 12:11.) But if we know that we are suffering for righteousness' sake, then we know the Spirit of God rests upon us. It is those who know that they suffer for Christ's sake, and who take it gladly because it is the will of God, that may rejoice, because the persecution is working out in them blessed effects. Let us then

"Be still beneath His tender care,
For He will make the tempest cease;
And bring from out the anguish here,
The afterward of peace."
"THE LORD YOUR GOD DOTH PROVE YOU"

Why does God permit His people to suffer? Why does He not shield those who are His from suffering, just as a loving parent would shield a child? The Scriptures reply that it is because God is working out a great Plan that will eventually bring blessings to all who will do righteously; for God wishes to show the evil effects of sin, its deteriorating effects. God's purpose is that after the Six Days of Sin and Death are ended, in the Seventh Day there shall be a blessing for the whole groaning creation. "Jehovah God will wipe away tears from off all faces." – Isa. 25:8.

And there is a particular reason why God should permit persecution to come upon His consecrated ones. "The Lord your God doth prove you," test you. Why? What is He proving? We profess to be His loyal children. We profess to be laying down all that we have. And now "the Lord your God doth prove you, to know whether ye love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul." – Deut. 8:2; 13:3.

How much will you endure? How patiently will you endure? To what extent will you endure? Those who will endure most, and endure most patiently, will give evidence of the best character. And those who demonstrate the best character will have the highest positions in the Kingdom. Each will get a position according to his faithfulness. But as star differeth from star in glory, so it will be in the Kingdom. He who fights the greatest fight against his own nature and demonstrates most the love and zeal of his heart, such is the one who will have a high place.

"How goes the fight with thee?
The lifelong battle with all evil things?
Thine no low strife, and thine no selfish aim;
It is the war of giants and of kings.
Heed not the throng of foes!
To fight 'gainst foes is still the Church's lot.
Side thou with God, and thou must win the day;
Woe to the man whom Satan fighteth not!"

THE SOLITARY WAY
Alas! How few may know the grace it takes
To tread the solitary way. Alone!
Ah, yes, alone! No other human heart
Can understand the nameless sorrows there –
The nights in weeping spent, and yet, when dawns
The day, to greet the world with radiant smile,
And scatter sunshine while you whisper low
To your poor heart, "Canst bear a little more?"

Alone! Poor heart, and dost thou question, Why?
Dost think it strange that thou must walk this way?
Ah, no! Thou dost but follow in His steps
Who went before, and of the people there
Was none with Him! Alone? Yet not alone
Hath not thy blessed Lord and Master said,
"My presence shall go with thee"? Ah, my soul,
No longer, then a solitary way!

December 24, 1913
G. W. SEIBERT.

[R5397 : page 41]

1913 – REPORTS FROM FOREIGN MISSIONS – 1913
BRITISH BRANCH REPORT

DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL: –

Enclosed is a summarized report of the work of the British Branch for the year ending October 31, 1913. We are very glad to be able to report continued increase in almost every branch of the work – in the output of SCRIPTURE STUDIES and in the Volunteer matter, but specially in the distribution of literature to advertise public meetings in connection with Class Extension and other special work. The total output of STUDIES from London is 138,717 volumes, the local (British) sales being 111,630 volumes, an increase for the year of 27,418 volumes. The Volunteer matter has been well distributed during the whole of the year, and the demand still continues.

Altogether during the year we have dispatched 11,627,000 copies of the BIBLE STUDENTS' MONTHLY and EVERYBODY'S PAPER, a circulation approaching a million copies per month. This shows an increase over last year's figures of 4,250,000 copies. The Colporteurs have on the whole done better, and all have done very well. With improved methods of canvassing better results are gained; indeed, some of the latest additions to the Colporteur force are doing best of all. Two young brothers recently sold in one of the towns in the north of Scotland 330 books in one week. Certainly the work is easier in some places than in others, and Scotland has always been easier than England; but the growing interest aroused by the sermons, by the special meetings and the general unrest of our times has created a demand which makes the work of colporteuring less difficult. Even the opposition lends a hand to some extent; it helps to advertise the work.

Book-loaning has made considerable increase during the year; good work is reported both from the larger and the smaller centres. The visits of the Pilgrim brethren are still greatly appreciated by the classes, and opportunity for public witness is usually taken advantage of. Class Extension work has greatly extended during the past year and the results are very encouraging indeed.

In this small country, so thickly populated comparatively, it has been found advantageous to link the classes within prescribed areas, for the furtherance of the Harvest Work. Results so far are satisfactory and prospects good. Considerable encouragement has attended Evangelical work in certain centres where the population is particularly dense. Nearly three hundred meetings have been held, and quite a few study classes have been formed. In the scattered parts of Wales the Truth has been witnessed to, sometimes in the open air, in accordance with the custom of the country. There is no difficulty in securing a good audience amongst the Welsh people, but it seems that there are but few of the "wheat" class amongst them.

The loyalty of the brethren has been demonstrated, and their strength greatly taxed by the distribution of no less than 6,000,000 tracts to advertise public meetings during the year. The difference of late in the attitude of the masses in this country towards the Truth was clearly shown at the successful meetings held lately by yourself and Brother Rutherford. Naturally our enemies feel disturbed and, being impotent, wreak their spleen upon the Lord's messengers, especially yourself. However, no weapon formed against us has been allowed to prosper, and we are encouraged by the many evidences of the appreciation of the Message. We are looking forward to a strenuous campaign until the work given into our hands is finished, when we hope to share with our Lord, yourself, and all the saints in the privileged work of healing the nations. With much love in the Lord,

We are your servants in Him, BRITISH BRANCH.

SUMMARY OF OUTPUT OF SCRIPTURE STUDIES – YEAR ENDING OCTOBER 31, 1913:

                               1913      1912  Increase
STUDIES, all kinds.......... 138,717   106,097  32,620
(To Australia, out of above   27,087    21,885)
                             -------   -------
Total British local sales    111,630    84,212  27,418
Total increase................................  32,620
Local    "    ................................  27,418


OUTPUT BIBLE STUDENTS' MONTHLY AND OTHER TRACTS:
B.S.M......... 5,661,020
E.P........... 5,618,900
Tracts........   297,000
Hz............    50,295
              ----------
              11,627,215, or tract pages...185,365,600
Books (Manual, Manna, Poems, etc.).............  3,248
Booklets (h, s, t, p, etc.).................... 19,817
Letters – out.................................. 18,601
Letters – in................................... 19,508

SWEDISH BRANCH REPORT
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL: –

It is once more my highly appreciated privilege to send you the usual Annual Report of this Branch of the wonderful Harvest work, and I hope that you, as the Great Chief Reaper's special representative, will be pleased with the results it shows – the results of our humble efforts to uphold the banner of our Redeemer and King – the results of our efforts to proclaim that joyful Message, now "meat in due season" for the "household of faith," and to "lay down our lives for the brethren," even as He laid down His life for us. Our constant prayer has been, and continually is, that we, by the Lord's grace, may be enabled to please Him in all our doings, so that at the end of our race-course (which we now believe to be very near), we may hear His blessed "Well done."

Although we most heartily wish (in order to prove our love to the Lord and our appreciation of the Truth given us) that we were in a position to report ten times as much work accomplished, and that all of that work had been much more perfectly executed, yet we cannot but give praise to God for the rich blessings granted us in so many ways.

Since Present Truth (as a result of your faithfulness and zeal) reached our shores, between fifteen and twenty years ago, the true Spiritual Israelites in this country have not experienced a more interesting and successful year than the one just closed. This is surely due in great measure to the fact that the Lord's people here have been appreciating more than ever the "fat things" spread upon His table by receiving the Swedish WATCH TOWER twice every month, the two encouraging and helpful sermons published in different Swedish newspapers every week, and the regular Swedish PEOPLE'S PULPIT, to say nothing of the six volumes of the STUDIES, the different pamphlets, etc. Notwithstanding the fact that during this year we have experienced some severe testings and trials in the work, in that some of our co-laborers seem to have grown faint and weary, it has in many respects considerably exceeded other years, as the appended figures show.

The spiritual condition of the Swedish brethren in general, as far as we are able to judge, is better than ever. The development of the fruits of the Spirit amongst the brethren everywhere in this land is very gratifying. We have had the pleasure of seeing the Harvest Message accepted with great joy by many humble and truth-hungry souls, some of whom are already engaged in the various branches of the work. [R5397 : page 42]

Forty dear brethren and sisters are giving either all or part of their time to the Colporteur work, and the prospects are encouraging for an increase in numbers.

The number of books sold is about equal to that of the preceding year. The free distribution of Volunteer matter has also been comparatively good. Of the nearly 700,000 "Eko fran talarstolen" (PEOPLE'S PULPIT) the largest part have been used in connection with the advertising of public meetings held in practically all parts of the country.

The list of subscribers to the Swedish WATCH TOWER has grown from 1,881 to 2,174, who have paid kronor 5,244 (one kronor equals about 27c) in subscriptions against kronor 2,995 the foregoing year. Yearly subscriptions to the Swedish newspapers which publish your sermons have been received through this office to the number of 1,919, and half-yearly subscriptions to the number of over 1,500.

The regular Pilgrim service, in which five Swedish brethren have taken part during the year, has been extended greatly. The friends appreciate these visits very much, and write us frequently to this effect. Besides this, more than 100 extra public meetings were held all over the land, many in places where we had never held meetings before.

About 3,500 copies of STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES were sold at these meetings, which had a total attendance of nearly 50,000 very attentive listeners. We also had two good General Conventions (the first in Orebro and the second in Stockholm), and a large number of well-attended and spiritually profitable local Conventions in different parts of Sweden.

The voluntary donations to the Tract Fund have increased by several thousand kronor. Seeing that all of the many donors have little of earthly possessions, this [R5398 : page 42] sum (kronor 32,887) represents a great deal of self-denial and sacrifice for the Truth's sake. As the different branches of the work have grown from year to year, the office-work has increased correspondingly. Twelve noble brethren and sisters in Christ have given very faithful and unselfish service in the office during the year (and several of these for many years). I am often tempted to feel proud of their record.

The prospects for the New Year are brighter than ever in different lines, and we are firmly resolved to use every opportunity as faithfully and wisely as possible, realizing that the great Storm of Trouble is near at hand. Louder and louder peals the thunder, and darker grow the clouds.

As the harvesters in the fields of the land often find it necessary to withdraw, as the clouds become threatening and the winds blow, so the reapers in the Lord's Harvest field may by and by be compelled to cease active service. But as every tiller of the soil knows that just before a storm is an excellent time to sow certain kinds of seed, so those engaged in the service of the Truth are determined, by the Lord's grace, to use every opportunity to sow the precious grains of Truth during the remaining months, realizing that the crop of the future will be of enormous proportions.

Please find enclosed herewith a list containing thirty-one new names of those who have taken the Vow. We daily remember you, our beloved Pastor and brother, and "all saints," in our petitions to the Heavenly Throne, and are glad to know that you continue to remember us.

With much Christian love from the Bible House family of Orebro, and, indeed, from all the Swedish brethren, I am

Your co-laborer in the Harvest, AUG. LUNDBORG.

SUMMARY OF THE WORK.

Copies of STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES circulated
 at cost......................................        25,357
Vol. I., Magazine edition, sold at cost.......        15,104
                                                      ------
Total.........................................        40,461
Various other books and booklets – MANNA,
 TABERNACLE SHADOWS, etc......................        18,465
                                                      ------
Total.........................................        58,926
Eko fran talarstolen (PEOPLE'S PULPIT),
 issued free..................................       696,895
Other free tracts and copies of the Swedish
 WATCH TOWER..................................        86,704
                                                     -------
Total.........................................       783,599
Amounting in tract pages to...................    14,591,320
Number of subscribers to the Swedish
 WATCH TOWER..................................         2,174
Number of sermons in newspapers...............       312,500
Bibles sold...................................           124
Number of meetings held under the auspices
 of the Society...............................         1,576
Number of miles traveled in preaching tours...       102,903
Letters and cards sent out....................         6,470
Letters and cards received....................         5,485
Total shipments by mail and by railroad.......        59,637

EXPENDITURES.

Pilgrims, Conventions and
 other meetings.................... kr.20,965.37 = $5,666.32
Translations, printing, binding,
 paper, etc........................  " 30,283.78 =  8,184.81
Freight and postage................  "  3,712.56 =  1,003.39
Special services...................  "  6,094.86 =  1,647.26
Office expenses, rent, light,
 heat, etc.........................  "  6,839.69 =  1,848.56
                                       ---------   ---------
Total.............................. kr.67,896.26 =$18,350.34

RECEIPTS.

Voluntary donations to the
 Tract Fund, 1,928................. kr.32,887.01 = $8,888.38
Swedish TOWER subscriptions........  "  5,244.92 =  1,417.54
Receipts from publications.........  " 28,383.43 =  7,671.20
                                       ---------   ---------
Total.............................. kr.66,515.36 =$17,977.12
Deficit received from
 Brooklyn..........................  "  1,380.90 =    373.22
                                       ---------   ---------
                                    kr.67,896.26 =$18,350.34

DANISH BRANCH REPORT
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL: –

I have the pleasure to submit to you a report of some of the work done in connection with our efforts to spread the Harvest Message in Denmark. Ours is a small country, the laborers are not many, and the prejudice is great, yet the testimony has somewhat influenced quite a number, and a few honest souls, more awake to the signs of the times than the majority, have been reached, and are being garnered. We believe that the friends are growing in grace and knowledge, and we find that the public is now more willing to attend the public meetings.

Public lectures have been delivered in 45 different places – in some of these places several lectures, in a few regular lectures every month. The cards sent in, and the books sold at the meetings, show that some, at least, became somewhat interested through the lectures. Some of the work in connection with the public lectures has been done by brethren sent out by the Copenhagen class. Class meetings have been held by brethren doing Pilgrim work in all the places where the friends meet to study Present Truth. Now we have several brethren with good qualifications for Pilgrim work, and we hope to accomplish more during the remainder of the time before the Night comes.

More free literature has been distributed than formerly. We count it a great privilege to know the precious [R5398 : page 43] Message, and to be able to do our little part in proclaiming it.

Your brother and fellow-servant in Christ,

CARL LUTTICHAU. – Copenhagen.

SUMMARY OF THE WORK.

Output of STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES..........     3,122
Output of various booklets...................     3,343
                                                  -----
Total........................................     6,465
Tracts free..................................   365,000
Letters and cards received...................     1,250
Letters, cards and parcels sent out..........     2,148
Copies of the Danish WATCH TOWER sent out
 monthly.....................................       909

AUSTRALASIAN BRANCH REPORT
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL: –

It is with great thankfulness to the Lord of the Harvest that we present herewith the annual report of Harvest work done in these lands. The report is far beyond what we had dared to hope for. If you will compare the figures with those of last year, you will see that they speak of a great increase of zeal and willingness to sacrifice both self and substance in the interest of bringing others to the same joy and peace and consolation which have come to our hearts. The friends have co-operated splendidly in the work and those who could not engage in much activity have helped some, and thus made it easier for others to do so.

There are about twenty-one Colporteurs in the field, and others are doing a little as they are able. All the ground has been gone over. Indeed, it seems to be getting near the time when the "man with the ink-horn" can report, "It is done." Yet the volumes have gone out this year as never before in Australia, notwithstanding the virulent opposition. It has seemed that just as soon as a spark of interest was aroused, the great Adversary had his messengers here ready to oppose and slander. Nevertheless, the number of interested ones keeps increasing. We have about 980 WATCH TOWER subscribers and, comparing the population of Australia and New Zealand with that of America, it is possible that the proportion of subscribers is not much, if any, below that of the United States.

For the first time in the history of this Branch we have gone through the year without increasing our indebtedness to Brooklyn, and we are sure that in the amount contributed to the Tract Fund, etc., there is represented much noble sacrifice and methodical planning.

The friends in the various States have again undertaken to write wrappers for the posting of the PEOPLE'S PULPIT to each house in the country, and in N.S.W., W.A., S.A., Queensland and Tasmania they have also undertaken to pay the postage. This might have been added to the Tract Fund contribution if we had particulars.

We believe that the Classes are growing in numbers as well as in interest and grace. We are realizing more and more that the day of our deliverance is not far distant, and this inspires us the more earnestly to seek to be ready for the great consummation of our hopes.

No doubt a visit here by you would do us all a great deal of good. We hope it may be the Lord's will for you to come.

We are glad that Brother Hollister is on his way, and will arrive in time to spend Christmas with us. Our Christmas Convention promises to outdo anything that we have previously held. These Conventions have been a source of great encouragement, and have given an impetus to the work. [R5399 : page 43]

There has been a steady flow of inquiries from the output of the PEOPLE'S PULPIT, and we now have about 1,300 names on the subscription list, many of whom take a number of copies each month for distribution. We believe that one copy of the social number has been delivered, either by mail or by hand, to every house in Australia and New Zealand. While the expense is great the result is splendid.

We are looking forward with hope to the opportunities of the New Year. We know not what may be in store for us, but we are resolved to endeavor to trace the Lord's will, and to trust in His grace for help in every time of need. It seems that the coming year is bound to be full of testings, and one feels how much he needs to guard his heart in all humble loyalty and faithfulness if he is to come off an overcomer and share in the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.

We are yours in the service of Christ,

Australasian Branch W. T. B. & T. Soc'y.
R. B. NICHOLSON, Sec'y.

SOUTH AFRICAN BRANCH REPORT
MY DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL: –

Once again it is my privilege to submit the Annual Report re the progress of the Harvest Work in Africa. While there has not been an increase in the number of volumes put out from this office, still I am convinced that the influence of the Truth in South Africa is greater than it was twelve months ago.

Since that time we have added eight newspapers to the list of those publishing the Sermons in this sub-continent. The sermons are now in circulation in eleven papers and in four different languages. We frequently hear from readers who, having received blessing through the Sermons, are anxious to inquire further into the Truth.

During the year the work among the natives has advanced considerably. A class of about fifty Zulus has been gathered out by Brother Tshange. This work is receiving our special attention and, with the aid of the recent issue of the Zulu tract, "Where Are the Dead?" we hope to see the class grow still further.

The work among the white population continues to enjoy the Lord's blessing. Class meetings are now held at Durban, Johannesburg, Pretoria, Balfour and Pt. Elizabeth.

There is one brother colporteuring in the Cape Province and he is meeting with fair success. A dear brother from Durban is, at my suggestion, spending his holiday with the brethren at Johannesburg, to help build them up in the knowledge of the Truth. His services are much appreciated by the brethren there.

During the year I have made two Pilgrim tours, one in the Transvaal and Orange Free State, and one in the Eastern Province of Cape Colony. Reports of both of these are already in your hands.

We are duly impressed by the thought that we have entered what may be the last year of the Harvest Work, and earnestly desire grace and strength to embrace every opportunity for service ere the Night close down. The financial and statistical report for 1913 is enclosed. Asking for a continued remembrance in your prayers, I am with much love to yourself and to all the dear brethren,

Your brother and co-laborer,

WM. W. JOHNSTON.

1913 SUMMARY FOR SOUTH AFRICA.

Bibles sold at cost..........................        45
STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES....................     1,264
DAILY HEAVENLY MANNA.........................       204
Other Bible-help booklets....................     1,053
Free papers..................................    47,632
Letters despatched...........................     1,197
Meetings held................................       325

[R5396 : page 44]

"WHERE YOUR TREASURE IS"
– MARCH 1. – LUKE 12:13-34. –

"Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also." – V.34.
J
ESUS was surrounded by a multitude of Jews, one of whom, recognizing Him as influential, requested that He admonish his brother to give him a share of the family inheritance. Jesus declined, saying that He was not a judge or a divider. It would be well if the followers of Jesus would follow their Master in this, as well as in other matters. Too many are disposed to be busybodies in other men's matters, and overlook the fact that their commission of the Lord is to preach the Gospel.

Society has provided certain rules, laws and regulations – "the powers that be are ordained of God." Whatever these laws will not accord us we should let drop. We should be content with such things as we have and such things as Divine providence insures us. As Jesus had another work to do, so have His followers. That other work is the preparation for the glorious Messianic Kingdom. The riches which it promises us so far transcend all earthly riches as to make them appear, as St. Paul declared, loss and dross, not worthy to be compared with the blessed things our Lord promises.

Jesus backed up His refusal to intervene with a caution against covetousness. This implies that the estate properly belonged to the brother, and that the one who addressed Jesus desired more than his legal rights. He was coveting that which legally belonged to another. Jesus would have him, and us all, see that the abundance of earthly possessions, wealth, is not the sum of life. A man may be miserable while rolling in wealth, or he may be happy in comparative poverty. The basis of happiness is measured by the soul's relationship to God and hope in Him.

The Jews were a typical people – Natural Israel, in comparison to Spiritual Israel of this Gospel Age. God's promise to Natural Israel was that if they would keep the Law, they would inherit the Promise made to Abraham, and be used by God as His Kingdom to bless the world. Their difficulty was that, being sinners like the remainder of men, they were unable to keep the Divine requirements, hence were not qualified to be used of God as His Kingdom for scattering His blessings to the nations. Nevertheless, the hope of the Kingdom was the thing ever uppermost in their minds, sought for by all of them.

Jesus came into the world to give Himself a "Ransom for all" (1 Timothy 2:6), and to begin the work of calling and drawing "Israelites indeed," to constitute His associates in the Messianic Kingdom. He could, and did, keep the Law perfectly, and additionally, laid down His life sacrificially for Adam and his race. This sacrifice permitted Him to make good for the unintentional shortcomings of all "Israelites indeed," in whom was no hypocrisy. While they could not keep the Law and thus obtain the Kingdom, they could by accepting Christ have the righteousness of the Law imputed to them, and thus be acceptable with God. Hence Jesus' preaching was wholly along the lines of the Kingdom to the people who had for centuries been striving to approve themselves to God as worthy to constitute that Kingdom. The first opportunity for membership in the Kingdom class was granted to the Jewish people; and only in proportion as they rejected the favor did it pass beyond them to the Gentiles. As St. Paul said to some, "It was necessary that the Gospel should first be preached to you; but seeing ye reject the grace of God,...lo, we turn to the Gentiles." (Acts 13:46.) In view of these facts, we see that the teachings of Jesus were not addressed to the world, but to people who claimed to have separated themselves from the world, and to be seeking or desiring to attain a joint-heirship in the Messianic Kingdom.

Indeed, the entire teaching of the New Testament is to such persons. These alone have the hearing ear; and we are instructed that "He that hath an ear, let him hear." Again, we are instructed that the Gospel of the Kingdom is to be preached to the meek, the humble, the broken-hearted; for only these are in any sense of the word prepared to receive the Message. All others are blind and deaf to the Gospel of the Kingdom. All who do not now hear or see will have their eyes and ears opened by and by, during Messiah's Reign, because He tasted death for every man. But such will fail entirely as respects the glorious High Calling of this Gospel Age – the Kingdom.

"SOUL, TAKE THINE EASE"

Our Lord gave a parable illustrating the comparative foolishness of all earthly ambitions. This does not mean that earthly ambitions are the worst things; but rather that they are poor in comparison to the one great possibility, the Kingdom. It is a pearl of great value, to obtain which all other pearls – all other valuables, all other ambitions, and all other hopes – are to be set aside, and counted as dross.

The parable tells of a rich farmer who, instead of using his riches in doing good, was miserly – taking pleasure in accumulations. He built greater barns and storehouses, and consoled himself with the thought that he had plenty and more than enough, and could thenceforth take his ease. The parable points out that ere long he died. We query, What advantage did the man really have through his accumulation of great wealth, which he failed to use? He left it for others to quarrel over, and possibly to be more or less injured by. He was a foolish rich man. Instead of leaving his wealth thus, he should have enjoyed himself in spending it wisely for the good of others and to the glory of God. Thus he would have been rich toward God. But on the other hand, he was an illustration of those who are not rich toward God; for he laid up his treasure for self.

Many read into this parable things that it does not contain. They infer that the rich man went to eternal torment, but nothing in the Lord's words so intimates. The expression, "this night shall thy soul be required of thee," signifies this night you lose your life – you die in poverty. Earthly riches will be of no account to you in the future if you have not laid up spiritual riches in the heart, in the mind and in good works, which would make you rich in the future.

That rich man, instead of being benefited by the riches which he accumulated, will in the future life be disadvantaged. He might have used his riches sacrificially, or he might have consecrated his entire life to God through Christ and then faithfully laid down time, talent, opportunities, wealth. Thus he would in the same proportion have been laying up treasures in Heaven, so that in the resurrection he would have been received of the Lord as a faithful follower, to share His glory, honor and immortality – to be a member of His Kingdom class, whose commission it will be for a thousand years to scatter the Divine blessings secured by the death of Jesus to all of Adam's race.

That rich man, having missed his opportunities, will nevertheless come forth during Christ's Millennial Kingdom; [R5396 : page 45] for we read that all that are in their graves shall hear His voice and come forth. But instead of coming forth approved, to a share in the First Resurrection, he will come forth disapproved of God, and his resurrection opportunities will be those described as the Resurrection of Judgment. (John 5:29, R.V.) He will come forth to shame and contempt, which will continue until he shall, under the judgments of that time, learn his lesson and form a better character; or, refusing so to do, he will be cut off in the Second Death.

SEEK FIRST THE KINGDOM

We are not to understand the good Teacher to mean that we are to look amongst the kingdoms of earth hoping to find one of them His Kingdom. On the contrary, He informs us that His Kingdom is future. "My Kingdom is not of this world" – this order of things. (John 18:36.) For His Kingdom, God's Kingdom, we pray, "Thy Kingdom come." We hope, we wait, we prepare, for that Kingdom. We are to seek it in the sense of seeking to do those things which will make us "meet for the inheritance of the saints in light." We are to lay up treasures in Heaven. We are to use our pounds and our talents so wisely that at the Second Coming of the Savior, when He calls first for His servants and reckons with them, we may not only be amongst His servants, but hear His "Well done, good and faithful servant, enter thou into the joys of thy Lord" – the Kingdom joys – "Have thou dominion over two cities" or "five cities."

There is one definite procedure for those who would be heirs of the Kingdom. (1) They must recognize themselves as sinners, unworthy of Divine notice. (2) They must recognize Jesus as "the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world." (3) They should realize that while His sacrifice is the basis for the ultimate cleansing of the world, the reconciliation of all the willing and obedient to God, nevertheless that work has not yet begun. That work is to be accomplished by Him during the thousand years of His Kingdom Reign. (4) They are to hear the Lord's Message declaring that He is now seeking the members of the Kingdom class, and that the way to membership is a narrow way. "Whosoever will be My disciple, let him deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me, and where I am there shall My disciple be." They are to realize that the testing of this class is through much tribulation; that God is calling for not only saints, but those whose saintship will endure fiery trials, testings, in respect to their love for God and for the brethren, and in respect to their loyalty, even unto death.

From the time of making their full consecration to be the Lord's servants, faithful unto death in the service of righteousness, they will regard that Heavenly Kingdom as the great treasure beyond all comparison of value. [R5397 : page 45] They will seek it daily, hourly. Their hearts will be there – with the treasure. It will be the theme of their thoughts by day and of their meditations by night. Earthly occupations will still be necessary to them, in order to provide things needful and honest; but no earthly prize will have any value in comparison to the Heavenly prize, in their estimation. Such will be the successful heirs of the Kingdom which God hath promised to those that love Him more than they love houses or lands, parents or children or self.

[R5399 : page 45]

THE FAITHFUL ARE WATCHFUL
– MARCH 8. – LUKE 12:35-48. –

"Blessed are those servants, whom the Lord when He cometh shall find watching." – V.37.
T
ODAY'S lesson continues the Master's exhortations to His faithful ones – that they prepare themselves for His "Well done!" and the participation with Him in His Kingdom. He had said, "Fear not, Little Flock; it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the Kingdom." (V.32.) The Lord purposely left His followers without definite information respecting the time for the establishment of His Kingdom. He had illustrated the interim of time between His going and returning in the Parable of the Talents. He as the Master had left His servants in charge of His goods while He went to a far country, even Heaven itself, to be invested with the Kingdom authority; and at an appropriate time He would return to receive His servants, and according to their faithfulness would make them sharers with Him in His Kingdom, and then would begin His rule over His subjects, for their blessing and uplift out of sin and death conditions – for their deliverance from the reign of Sin and Death.
REGARDING THE LORD'S SECOND PRESENCE

Today's lesson opens with a parable. If in a great house, the master were about to be married and to bring home his bride, the servants would on that particular night be especially active, wakeful, attentive, that they might receive their lord with proper attention. They would not know exactly the time of their master's coming; but they would be continually on the alert that they might hear his knock and open instantly. So Jesus declared all of His followers should be on the alert for His Second Coming. It was not that He would bring His Bride with Him, rather He comes that He may receive His Bride here. Indeed, the faithful servants are then to be made the Bride, according to the other picture.

The thought is that Jesus' followers should take their ideals of alertness from the extremest experience of earthly service. Jesus intimated that His followers might be looking for Him sooner than He would come, saying that if He shall come in the second watch or in the third watch or whenever, blessed are those servants if he finds them watching for Him, alert, ready to receive Him. He declared that He will grant such servants a special honor. He will gird Himself, make Himself their servant, and cause them to sit down to a sumptuous feast which He will provide.

This Bible students understand to signify that at the Parousia of Jesus, His Second Presence, He will first of all make Himself known to His faithful followers, while the world in general will be ignorant of the fact that He has come. His manifestation to the world will come later; as we read, "He shall be revealed in flaming fire" – judgments. When He shall appear [to the world], we [the Church] shall appear with Him in glory. – Colossians 3:4.

It is our Lord's Parousia that is described in today's lesson – His earliest manifestations of His Second Advent. The world will see Him not, and know not of His presence, and His Church will know of His presence only by His "knock" – by the intimations given in the Scriptures – the fulfilment of prophecy. It will then be for the watchful ones to recognize this fulfilment, and by faith to open their hearts and minds promptly to acknowledge the Master's presence and all that Presence implies of the nearness of His Kingdom and of the proving of all who will be found faithful, worthy to share in that Kingdom as members of His Bride. [R5399 : page 46]

For such as receive Him He will make a feast. Out of the Divine Word He will bring things new and old, for their refreshment and comfort. The Bible will become to them a new Book; they will feast upon the riches of God's grace, and the dark things will become clear, the hidden mysteries shall be revealed. The Master Himself will be the Servant, the Revealer, the Setter-forth of these viands of Truth. Many Bible students believe that we are now living in this very time; and that each faithful, watchful follower of Jesus will be granted a hearing of the knock and the privilege of participating in this feast, which many tell us they are now enjoying.

"But know this, that if the master of the house had known in what hour the thief would come, he would have watched, and not have suffered his house to be broken into." The great Teacher here intimates that Satan, the Prince of this world, is the master of the present order of things on earth; and that at His Second Coming He will bind this strong man, or master of the present order, and overturn present institutions and establish instead the long-promised Reign of Righteousness. It will be this thorough transition from the Reign of Sin and Death to the Reign of Righteousness and Life, which will cause the great Time of Trouble mentioned everywhere throughout the Bible as marking the closing of this Gospel Age – "a Time of Trouble such as never was since there was a nation." – Daniel 12:1; Mark 13:8; Matthew 24:21.

Here and elsewhere Jesus speaks of His Second Coming as thief-like. The thought is that He will be present for a time, unobserved by the world, known only to the Bride class, the salt of the earth, whom He will remove – changing them from earthly nature to Heavenly. Verse 40 confirms this thought, and instructs all the Lord's faithful that they should be ready for His presence, to render up at any hour their accounts and experience the change. [R5400 : page 46]

"TO GIVE THEM THEIR PORTION"

St. Peter was perplexed. Was this parable especially for the Apostles, that they should watch, etc., or was it for all the people? he inquired. But the Lord did not answer him directly. He merely assured St. Peter that at the appropriate time the Lord would appoint a steward over His household, to give them their portion of food in due season. This is not very different from what has been the Lord's usual method of dealing with His family. While a measure of the Spirit is given to each for his profit; and while the Holy Spirit thus given is to guide the recipient into a knowledge of the things of God, nevertheless the Lord has been pleased to use special instrumentalities at various times.

For instance, St. Peter apparently for a time was a leader amongst the Apostles, in opening the Pentecostal door, and later in opening the door to the Gentiles – preaching to Cornelius, the first Gentile convert. Later on, the Lord seems to have specially chosen St. Paul to be His particular messenger to the Gentiles; as we read, "He is a chosen vessel unto Me, to bear My name unto the Gentiles." (Acts 9:15.) Similarly Enoch, Abraham, Moses, the Prophets, and others during this Gospel Age, have seemed to be especially used of the Lord to draw the attention of His people to His Word. In the case of the Apostles, there was of course a plenary or special inspiration, which does not appertain to others of this Age since.

While the Lord has thus appointed special servants in handing to His household meat in due season at various times, it was required of each one who would partake that he should prove, test, determine whether or not the teaching was of God. He was to prove all things by the written Word of God, which the Apostle Paul declared is sufficient that the man of God may be thoroughly furnished. Any servant not found faithful, it is intimated, would be supplanted by another.

The servant at the end of the Age, at the time of the Master's coming, if found faithful, would be especially blessed, and be given a general charge respecting the spiritual food to the Lord's family, the "meat in due season." But if he should prove unfaithful and fail to recognize the Master's presence, and manifest an unkind spirit toward the household, ministering to his own earthly wants rather than to the spiritual needs of the family of God, he would be removed in that day – cut asunder, separated, allowed to go into outer darkness with the world in general, in utter ignorance of the times and seasons, etc., of his Lord. The assumption is that the displacement of the one servant would mean the recognition of another to supply the Household of Faith.

On the basis of this parable the Lord explained a general principle of His dealings; viz., that any servant, knowing his Master's will and not doing in harmony therewith, would receive stripes, punishments, tribulations, of some sort, in proportion to the degree of his knowledge and opportunity. On the other hand, any servant, even if he did things worthy of stripes, yet did them ignorantly, would receive proportionately fewer stripes. In a word, the general principle is that "to whom much is given, of him much is required."

OUR GOLDEN TEXT

The heart of this lesson is found in Verse 37, which refers to all of the Lord's servants who will be living at the time of His Second Coming – who in the earliest stages of His Second Coming, in the time of His Parousia, His presence, will be faithfully watching, on the alert to serve every interest of the Lord's cause, seeking His will, doing His will, searching the Scriptures, obeying the Scriptures, to the best of their ability. These will be informed to a certain degree respecting the time in which they will be living, as the Apostle points out, saying: "Ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief." "Ye are all children of the light, children of the Day." "For the Day of the Lord shall so come as a thief in the night, in the which they [the world] will say, Peace and safety; and they [the world] shall not escape [the tribulations of that day]." "But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that Day shall overtake you as a thief." "Ye are all children of the light, children of the Day." (1 Thessalonians 5:1-8.) "Let us therefore walk, not in darkness, but in the light."

The secrecy observed respecting the time and the manner of the Second Coming of Jesus will prove to be a strong test. All of the Lord's consecrated ones who are overcharged with the cares of this life – business, pleasure, etc. – will be slow to hear the knock; and even when they hear, they will be too much engrossed to give heed.

However, there will be a great blessing on those servants whom the Lord at that time shall find watching – not watching the sky, as though they would see Jesus, when He is now a spirit being, invisible to humanity, but watching the Bible testimonies, watching the trend of the times, watching their own hearts, watching also the interests of the Church of God, seeking to build one another up in the most holy faith, laying aside every weight and every besetting sin. Let all of us who claim to be virgins – pure ones – who claim to be the Lord's servants as well as His brethren – let us be found of Him in peace, seeking first the Kingdom of God and the righteousness which it inculcates; let us be found alert, watching for opportunities of usefulness in the proclamation of the Kingdom Message, and in helping the Bride to make herself ready. – Revelation 21:9; 19:7.

[R5400 : page 47]

SOME INTERESTING LETTERS
HEARD HIM LECTURE SEVENTY TIMES
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL: –

Just a little anniversary note: Twelve years ago today, in Marten's Hall, St. Louis, I met and heard you for the first time – having since listened to you seventy times.

You discoursed that day on THE RESURRECTION OF THE GOOD UNTO LIFE, AND THE RESURRECTION OF THE EVIL UNTO DAMNATION. One of my eyes was opened by the unreasonableness of a twenty-four hour Judgment Day, as exposed by you – a sort of a burlesque on my Methodist training. The other eye was opened by the reasonableness of the Scriptural Thousand-Year Day of Judgment, which you explained.

I had been reading THE WATCH TOWER about five months, and had "gathered in" a little of its Message, as indicated by the notations on their margins; but I think the impression made on me that day fixed upon me, somehow, a determination to know God – to study His revealed Word. What it would lead to, of course, I could not comprehend. But I thank our dear Heavenly Father for His merciful and patient leading. I thank Him for the great responsibilities which are now mine! I am happy to be in the Truth and to know the Spirit of the Lord; and my earnest prayer is for wisdom to properly manifest in my daily life the fruits and graces of that Spirit.

I wish to express to you my gratitude for your helpfulness all along the way. I love you for it. I pray daily for the all-sufficient grace to you-ward – for the Heavenly Father to sustain and cheer you, and to make you the happiest of men. Your confidence in, and loyalty to, Almighty God has borne much fruit for others as well as for yourself, and will certainly meet with a great reward – shortly.

Somehow – I don't know how – I thought I could see a climax to culminate in the Seventh Volume, and from the first I have prayed that God might prepare my heart for that Seventh Volume. This Harvest Message as a whole has included so much. I feel confident that this great anticipation for the consummation of the Divine Plan of the Ages, in narrowing down the rays of prophecy and Present Truth to the focal-point, "It is Done," has carried me over many bridges where rails, ties and pillars had been removed.

I am praising God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, and our Father, for an appreciation of, and a participation in, the Precious Blood! With tenderest love to my Pastor, I remain,

Your fellow-servant in Christ,

C. E. STEWART.

EXPERIENCE OF TWO COLPORTEURS
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL: –

Having heard of an experience of two Colporteur sisters, I thought that I would acquaint you with the same; for a word from you in THE WATCH TOWER would prevent a recurrence in other places.

These two sisters, both of them full of zeal, had gone to canvass a town assigned to them. There is a small Class in the town; so they first sought to get acquainted with its members.

The town had been canvassed before, and bitter opposition had been aroused by the preachers and others. Instead of encouraging the sisters, the Class commenced to tell them that it would be no use to canvass there – "Why, you will not sell any books here," etc.

This discouraged them for a time; but realizing that they were in the Lord's work, and looking to Him for strength, they determined to go forth and colporteur in His name and strength.

The result was that in ten weeks they took orders for 1550 volumes and delivered the most of them, as well as assisting with a series of four meetings. If these sisters had followed the advice of the Class, this splendid opportunity for witnessing would have been lost.

May the Lord continue to bless and keep you in all your ways and His presence be with you to the end! [R5401 : page 47]

THE WATCH TOWER is getting better and better as we near the end; and how precious are its lessons to all! As we visit each place we hear many expressions of appreciation from the friends. I close with Christian love.

Your loving brother in Christ,

THOS. P. YATES.

SWORD OF TRUTH FLASHING RIGHT AND LEFT
BELOVED BROTHER RUSSELL: –

Wherever I go, among college men or others, I find Present Truth permeating remarkably, able financial and business men even conceding that an unparalleled panic is coming. Great numbers advance some of Present Truth that must have come from the STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES, and do not know where it came from. This demonstrates to my mind that these fundamental truths which are to unify all the human race are making rapid advance beyond those of the ideas of federation that are now operating to some extent among the denominations. Ashamed of the spectacle of a house divided against itself, as nominal Christendom is, they are striving for an impossible unity, which at best can be but nominal.

The triumph of Truth is now beginning to show a glorious reality; thanks be to our Heavenly Father and our Lord Jesus, and to you, the faithful under-shepherd, and to all of the coworkers for the Kingdom of Heaven!

Standing on the "sea of glass" we are lost in wonder as we see clearly this mighty conflict – the Sword of Truth flashing right and left, forcing out the Adversary from his refuge of lies. The words of a poet, "Lean far out into silence and listen for the thunder of the voice of God," have now a literal application for those who have the hearing ear. Marvelous!

Surely Satan is being bound! Longing for that Day when Truth shall triumph, the whole groaning creation have cried in hope,

"Truth crushed to earth shall rise again;

The eternal years of God are hers." O glorious Day! At last it has come – literally in sight!

Your Brother trying to help in the Harvest work,

NEWTON T. HARTSHORN. – N.H.

page 47

FOUND "THE STUDIES" HER PANACEA
BELOVED BROTHER RUSSELL: –

"My lines are fallen in pleasant places; my soul rejoices in the Lord."

But there was a time when I thought the Lord had forgotten me. In years past I was a diligent Bible student, and discovered many buried truths of the Bible and errors of the teachings of the system, such as the two phases of the Kingdom, the inconsistency of the Trinity doctrine, etc. But yet I believed in the immortality of the soul and a literal hell – not eternal though. You can better imagine my confusion than I can describe it.

I still clung to the Bible; would rather die than reject it, but being unable to divide the Word of God rightly, I felt that death was sure if I could not be delivered from confusion.

The precious volumes were the appointed helps. Five years ago the first volume came to my hands. I took to it for doctrinal help only; but how surprised, how joyful, how grateful I was when I discovered the spiritual food! As my cup up to that time had overflowed with consuming controversies, it now overflowed with heart-reviving blessings.

Your sister in the Grace of our Lord,

HANNAH HEGGE.

[R5401 : page 47]

THINKS "WATCH TOWER" TIMED TO MINUTE
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL: –

A deep sense of appreciation to the Lord for the results of your labors in His name, particularly for the many blessings I am receiving from the reading of back TOWERS, and especially from the one just finished (June 1, 1900), urges me to express my thanks to you and to the Lord. I never received so much in such a short space as in this WATCH TOWER. It seemed as if almost every paragraph was written specially for me and timed right to the minute. I notice in so many of the letters written by the dear friends that questions which perplexed them were so often answered in the next TOWER, without suggestion. I have the same experience, both with the current TOWERS and the old ones; in fact, some of my experiences and the reading following them have startled me by their remarkable evidence of the Lord's leading and Providence.

Some of the letters are so inspiring, and it is so interesting to watch the Truth grow! I read a little faster than a year's WATCH TOWERS a month, so while I have lost many blessings in experiences, yet the Lord makes up to me in this way.

I have recently seen a little souvenir with your picture and some quotations, with comment. It touched me deeply, and I hope to get some when I place my next order.

My wife (Sister H.) continues to make beautiful progress along the narrow way, and is truly a great help and inspiration to me. In harmony with comment on the MANNA text for Sept. 1, we are very thankful to God for the leading He provides for us. It is our prayer that you may be kept faithful and strong till all the Divine pleasure may be fully accomplished in you. May we all meet soon in the General Assembly of the Church of the first-borns!

Your brother in hope,

W. E. HULLINGER.

page 49
February 1st

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

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

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

VOL. XXXVFEBRUARY 15No. 4
A. D. 1914 – A. M. 6042
CONTENTS
Job's Experiences Typical of Human History 51
Job's Hope of a Resurrection 52
Difficult Lesson for Many 53
False Peace of Many 53
Restitution for Mankind Pictured 54
Enduring Hardness as Good Soldiers 54
Terms of Warfare Stated at Beginning 54
Self, Our Special Foe 54
Careless Living, a Form of Profanity 55
Lawful on the Sabbath 56
Seventh Day – First Day 56
Parables of the Kingdom 57
What Doth Jehovah Require? 59
Interesting Questions 61
How Did Saul of Tarsus See Jesus? 61
Giving Counsel to One in Trouble 61
Some Interesting Letters 62
Personal and Class Rights 62
End of Antitypical Atonement Day 63
Berean Lessons in Scripture Studies – Vol. II 63

'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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THIS JOURNAL AND ITS SACRED MISSION
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HIS Journal is one of the prime factors or instruments in the system of Bible Instruction, or "Seminary Extension," now being presented in all parts of the civilized world by the WATCH TOWER BIBLE & TRACT SOCIETY, chartered A.D. 1881, "For the Promotion of Christian Knowledge." It not only serves as a class room where Bible Students may meet in the study of the divine Word, but also as a channel of communication through which they may be reached with announcements of the Society's Conventions and of the coming of its traveling representatives styled "Pilgrims," and refreshed with reports of its Conventions.

Our "Berean Lessons" are topical rehearsals or reviews of our Society's published "Studies," most entertainingly arranged, and very helpful to all who would merit the only honorary degree which the Society accords, viz., Verbi Dei Minister (V.D.M.), which translated into English is, Minister of the Divine Word. Our treatment of the International S.S. Lessons is specially for the older Bible Students and Teachers. By some this feature is considered indispensable.

This Journal stands firmly 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." (I Pet. 1:19; I Tim. 2:6.) Building up on this sure foundation the gold, silver and precious stones (I Cor. 3:11-15; 2 Pet. 1:5-11) of the Word of God, its further mission is to – "Make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery which...has been hid in God,...to the intent that now might be made known by the Church the manifold wisdom of God" – "which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men as it is now revealed." – Eph. 3:5-9,10.

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

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

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THE PHOTO-DRAMA OF CREATION

Answering various inquiries, we report that the DRAMA is not a mere statement of the Divine Plan – not a mere sermon. It therefore appeals to the public. We trust that its effect will be a broadening of human intelligence and interest in respect to the Bible and the Plan of God therein set forth. It is in four parts of two hours each. All witnessing it, we believe, will have larger conceptions of God, of the Universe and of humanity – everything. Freed from some of the shackles of error and superstition and ignorance, some, we hope, will be the better enabled to receive the knowledge of God which the Bible sets forth. Many who have witnessed the DRAMA and heard its lectures express great delight. One minister is reported to have said: "I have learned more in these two hours than I learned in the entire three years of my theological course in the U.B. College at Dayton, Ohio." Catholics, Protestants and Jews – all come, all are interested, and no ground for offense is given to any.

The DRAMA is exhibited in Cincinnati at MUSIC HALL; in Cleveland at THE TEMPLE, Prospect Ave. and E. 22nd Street, at VICTORIA THEATRE in St. Louis, and at the AMERICAN THEATRE in Toledo – twice every day. In Boston it is shown in THREE PARTS every Sunday. Approximately twelve thousand people are now being reached daily in the cities mentioned.

Our pictures are very beautiful, very costly, and require a great deal of time for preparation. We are, therefore, limited as to the number of sets of the DRAMA we can put forth; we are limited also by the expense incidental to each presentation – for rent, light, operators, etc. We shall not be able to reach very far for some months.

Many more brethren have prepared themselves to be operators than we shall be able to employ for a good while. However, we have in mind something which we will mention as soon as it is ready, which may give opportunities of service to many more than are now employed. As for the sisters, we are relying upon the Classes at the various cities where the Exhibition is shown to supply the necessary Volunteers for ushers.

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"WONDERFUL COTTON SEED" – FREE

Last year we offered our readers a few grains each from a wonderful stalk of cotton seven feet high, bearing hundreds of bolls. The only conditions were that they should send us one-half the seed of their crop, keeping the remainder for their own use. As a result we have received some sixty or seventy pounds of cotton seed. We will be pleased to send this to cotton-growers, giving a preference to those whose names are found on THE WATCH TOWER lists – on the same terms as that sent out last year. However, because of the better supply, we can increase the quantity sent to you.

Write soon, and then wait. We will allow reasonable time to elapse before sending any, so as to determine what quantity may go to each.

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CO-OPERATION OF FRIENDS APPRECIATED

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We thank you for interesting clippings sent in, but request that you give name and date of the publication. If you send the paper be sure to mark the articles distinctly, so we will have no difficulty in locating the desired part.

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JOB'S EXPERIENCES TYPICAL OF HUMAN HISTORY

"All these things happened unto them for ensamples [margin, types], and they are written for our admonition upon whom the ends of the ages are come." – 1 Corinthians 10:11.
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HE Book of Job is credited with being the finest piece of literature in the Hebrew language. It is a poem: and all scholars admit that no translation yet given does it justice. Martin Luther, after reviewing his last effort to translate it into the German, said, "Job is suffering more from my version than from the taunts of his friends, and would prefer his dunghill to my translation of his lamentation." The Book of Job "is admitted, with hardly a dissenting voice, to be the most sublime religious poem in the literature of the world," said Samuel Cox. "I call that one of the grandest things ever written with pen....There is nothing written, in the Bible nor out of it, of equal literary merit," said Thomas Carlyle.

Whoever was used of God as the penman, his name is not given. The book is introduced with a prose narrative of Job's losses and sufferings. (The account of Satan's conversation with God concerning Job should be considered as allegorical – after the style of Pilgrim's Progress.) Then his patient endurance is set forth. Next follow the poetic colloquies between Job and his three friends, then Elihu's argument, then the Almighty's address, then Job's confession. The conclusion, relating to Job's return to favor and blessing, and his death, is in prose.

Some have assumed that the Book of Job is merely a parable; and that Job himself is merely an imaginary character. But if this were the case, the teachings of the book would not be different. However, we see no cause to doubt that such a person did live and pass through the experiences related. In Ezekiel 14:14 and James 5:11, Job is classed with other holy men, which would not be the case were this narrative merely a parable. Besides, there are particular details given, such as are not common to parables.

The fact that Job lived a hundred and forty years after his adversities, or probably over two hundred years in all, together with the fact that neither he nor his friends make any allusion to Israel or Moses or the Law, nor to Abraham and God's Covenant made with him, seems to indicate beyond doubt that he belonged to the Patriarchal Age. Possibly he lived about the same time as Abraham. His home was evidently in Arabia, and probably not far from Palestine.

Job is introduced as a man of great learning and influence; as a man of great piety, who knew and reverenced God and appreciated justice; as a man of great generosity, who considered the widow and the orphan; and as a merchant prince of great wealth, who by his numerous servants and three thousand camels, carried on an extended and very prosperous traffic.

Suddenly disaster came upon him and he was bereft of his children, his wealth, his influence and his health. He sought in vain for an explanation as to why God should permit such evils to befall him. Yet still he trusted in God, saying, "Though he slay me, yet will I trust in Him!" His wife urged that it had been without Divine appreciation that he had sought to do justice and mercy all his life, and exclaimed, "Curse God and die!"

His three friends came to visit him, and, taking much the same view, told him in lengthy argument that he must have been a great sinner and a hypocrite. But, conscious of his own heart-honesty toward God, Job defends himself and goes to too great an extreme in declaring his innocence, but silences his critics. He seems to realize his need of some one to represent his cause before the Lord. He cries out that he is as righteous as he knows how to be; that he cannot reason the matter with God, being so much beneath Him in knowledge and power. He [R5402 : page 51] declares that the wilfully wicked are not so troubled, while he who has pursued righteousness is so afflicted that life has no further pleasure and he wishes that he had never been born. (Chapters 9, 10, and 16.) Feeling his own insufficiency to state his case before the great Jehovah, he desires a "daysman [a mediator] betwixt" God and himself. – Chapters 9:33; 16:21.

Job's masterly reply to the false reasonings of his friends (which many improperly quote as inspired), and his expressions of confidence in God and of his ultimate deliverance, are clearly presented in Chapter 13:1-16. And then, with prophetic wisdom, in Chapter 14, he presents a most wonderful statement of the course of God's dealing with mankind.

THE PROBLEM OF THE AGES

The question which perplexed Job and confused his reasonings was the same that for centuries has confused others of God's people; namely, Why does God permit evil (calamities, afflictions, etc.) to come upon His faithful servants? and why are the wicked permitted to flourish? But not until the Gospel Dispensation was it possible for any to know the mind of God on this subject; [R5402 : page 52] for it is one of the deep things which could be revealed only by the Spirit of God, and only to those begotten of that Spirit, as St. Paul explains. (1 Corinthians 2:9-14.) And the Holy Spirit was not thus given, as a guide and teacher, until after Christ had redeemed us and ascended up on High, there to present His sacrifice as the price of our return to Divine favor, peace and communion.

Although many are still in the dark on this subject, it is now open and clear to all the earnest ones to whom "it is granted to know the mysteries of the Kingdom of Heaven," to understand "the deep things of God." (Matthew 12:11; 1 Corinthians 2:10.) These see that the reign of evil, the reign of Sin and Death, under Satan, the Prince of this world, is permitted for two reasons: first, that all men may gain a full experience of the exceeding sinfulness of sin and the bitterness of its legitimate fruit; and, second, that God's people may be fully tried and tested as to their loyalty to God in the shadow of affliction and trial, as well as in the sunshine of health and prosperity.

Thus while God did not directly cause the evil state of things which surrounds us in nature and among men, but let it come upon men as the legitimate result, or fruit, of disobedience, sin, yet He does make use of the wrath of man and the sins of men and the animosity of Satan to work out grand designs which they do not comprehend, and of which His children know only by faith in His Word of revelation. For instance, how little did Satan and those malicious Jewish priests and Pharisees and those heartless Roman soldiers know that they were assisting in the working out of the Divine Plan when insulting, mocking and crucifying the Lamb of God!

And so it is with the many afflictions of God's people – especially those of the Little Flock, the Bride of Christ. Trials are designed to fit and polish them for the greater usefulness and honor in the future developments of God's great Plan. Thus, regardless of the wilfulness or the ignorance of the persecutors, these trials of faith and patience are working out for such a "far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory." This they do by preparing the called ones to be heirs of glory, by cultivating patience, experience, brotherly sympathy and love – which is God-likeness. Such, and such only can rejoice in tribulation and realize that all things – bad as well as good; unfavorable, as well as favorable – will be overruled in God's providence for their ultimate benefit.

JOB'S HOPE OF A RESURRECTION

But, returning to our consideration of Job, let us note in Chapter 14 some of his prophetic wisdom. The first four verses graphically picture what all of experience realize – that human life under present conditions is full of trial and sorrow, from the cradle to the tomb. And Job shows that he realizes that as a son of fallen parentage he could not be perfect, free from sin, clean, in the full sense of the word.

In verses 5,6, he tells the Lord that he recognizes the fact that the authority and power to limit man's days are in His hands, but urges (not seeing the ministry of trouble), Why not let me and all men live out our short time in peace – even as we would not afflict a hireling who already has a heavy, burdensome task!

Verses 7-10 are close reasonings respecting the utter hopelessness of man in death, so far as any powers of his own are concerned. A tree may die and yet its root retain life, which, under favorable conditions, may spring up into another tree. But when man dies there is no root left, no spark of life remains. He giveth up the spirit of life, and where is he?

Having confessed that there is no ground for hope inherent in man, Job begins to express the only, the real hope of our race – a resurrection – see verses 12,13. Man lies down in death and loses all power to arouse himself – nor can he be resuscitated from the sleep of death by any one, until God's due time. This will be the Resurrection morning, the Millennial Day, when the present symbolic heavens shall have passed away, and the new heavens or new spiritual ruling power – Christ's Kingdom – shall have come into control of the world. In this Job fully agrees with the teachings of our Lord and the Apostles.

The more he thinks of that blessed time when evil shall no more have dominion, but when a King shall reign in righteousness and princes shall execute judgment, the more he wishes he might die and be at rest. He exclaims (verse 13), "Oh, that Thou wouldst hide me in the grave [sheol]; that Thou wouldst keep me secret [hidden] until Thy wrath be past; that Thou wouldst appoint me a set time and remember me!" Job had faith in a resurrection, else he would never have uttered this prayer for death – for hiding in the grave. But he preferred death, and desired to sleep (verse 12) until the morning, for one reason only – that he might have no further experience with sin and with God's wrath – evil.

A short period in the end of the Gospel Age is specially called "the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God," because it will be "A time of trouble such as was not since there was a nation." Yet the entire period from the time Adam fell is called a time of Divine wrath, and properly so; for in all this long period "the wrath of God is revealed against all unrighteousness," in a variety of ways. While Love is a controlling principle in the Divine Government, it can operate only in harmony with Justice and Wisdom. It was both just and wise to let man feel the real weight of condemnation to death incurred by wilful transgression, in order that when Love should in due time provide a Ransom and a Resurrection, the culprit might the more gladly avail himself of the provided favors of Restitution and everlasting life. Thus death and all the evils permitted to come upon the culprit race are manifestations of God's wrath, which will be yet further shown in the great Time of Trouble. This will be followed by full and clear manifestations of God's Love and favor in Christ and the glorified Church during the Millennial Age. – Romans 1:18.

In verses 14 and 15, he puts the question pointedly, as though to determine and settle his faith; but he immediately answers affirmatively: "Thou shalt call, and I will answer Thee [and awake out of the sleep of Adamic death – compare John 5:28,29]; Thou wilt have a desire to the work of Thine hands" – for His people are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus. – Ephesians 2:10.

ELIHU'S HOPE OF A REDEEMER

When Job had refuted the arguments of his three friends, Elihu (whose name signifies God Himself) spoke from a different standpoint, reproving the three friends as well as Job. Elihu shows Job that he had been reasoning in part from a wrong premise – that he must not expect to fully comprehend all the ways of One so far above him, but must trust in God's Justice and in His Wisdom. And in Chapter 33:23,24 he shows the one thing necessary to man's recovery from the power of death, and his restoration to Divine favor, saying, "If there be with Him a Messenger as defender, One of a thousand [i.e., a rare One] to declare His own righteousness for man, then will God be gracious unto him [man] [R5402 : page 53] and say, Release him from going down to the grave; I have found a Ransom."

This is indeed the case with man. God's Wisdom and Justice cannot be impugned. The sentence of death is justly upon all men through Father Adam. (Romans 5:12.) But God has provided us a Redeemer, Christ Jesus our Lord; and He, in harmony with the Father's Plan, became a man, and then gave Himself a Ransom-price for all by paying the death-penalty that was upon Adam. And as soon as the Bride, otherwise called His Body and the Temple, is complete, this great Mediator will stand forward to declare His righteousness as for, or applicable to, every one who will accept it.

Then will follow Restitution, as pictured in verses 25 and 26. Physically, these for whom the Mediator stands shall be restored to a perennial youth, in which death and decay will find no place. They shall find acceptance and communion with God in joy and peace; and He will restore them to the original perfection, lost through sin in Eden. But an acknowledgment that God is just, and that the Restitution was unmerited will be required. This is indicated by verses 27,28: "He will chant it before men, and say: I have sinned and perverted the right; and it was not requited me. He has redeemed my soul from going into the pit and my life that it may be brought to the light."

Elihu's words were as wise as any of those spoken by Job's comforters – probably wiser; but they were merely human wisdom, so far as we can discern. In Chapter 34:29 he asks the question, "When He [Jehovah] giveth [R5403 : page 53] quietness, who then can make trouble?" Evidently the young man sought to draw a line in the criticism of Job, agreeing with neither Job nor his friends, but endeavoring to be moderate in his position. He defended the Almighty, claiming that if God had not so ordered, Job's adversities could not have come upon him.

To Elihu it seemed clear that God had a hand in Job's experiences. Satan could not have sent all these calamities unless God had permitted it. Neither man nor angel of whatever rank could thwart the Divine will. God, not Job, had the authority to decide what should be done. God alone had the right to order all of life's affairs. Incidentally Elihu showed that Job was more righteous than were his friends; and that while he was imperfect, like all, yet he was not being punished on this account.

A DIFFICULT LESSON FOR MANY

The Christian may very well draw a lesson from Elihu's question. Although the words are not inspired, yet they are very wise. We can recognize the truth they contain – that when God purposes to give peace, quietness, the whole Universe will be in obedience to His Laws, and none can make trouble.

If we have difficulties, if we have persecutions, if we have troubles of any kind we should look to God. We should say: This thing could not happen to me unless the Lord permitted it. We have come under special Divine care. God has promised that all things shall work together for good to us who are His children. The lesson of trust is one of those difficult lessons for us to learn and apply – to realize that all of life's experiences are under Divine supervision and that nothing can happen to us but what is for our highest good. This is not now true of the world, but merely of God's family. By and by God will make all things work out blessings for the world.

It is in respect to these who are His children that all things now work for good. When we are in difficulty, we are to look up in confidence and trust to the Lord. Our Heavenly Father wishes us to exercise faith in Him. St. Peter tells us that we are "kept by the power of God, through faith unto salvation." Therefore we greatly rejoice, even "though now for a season we are in heaviness through manifold trials" and temptations. "The trial of your faith is much more precious than that of gold that perisheth." – 1 Peter 1:5-7.

FALSE PEACE OF MANY

There is another way by which some may have quietness. Many in the world enjoy a measure of peace, or rest from worry. Yet they are unaware of the great truths which we enjoy, and are in blindness, ignorance, superstition, error, through Satan's delusions. They have a feeling of security and ease, through the blinding influence of error and falsehood. Those of the world who come into relationship with God, are therefore sometimes awakened from false security. Then they gain the true peace and rest of heart. The Lord says: "Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." No true rest can be gained otherwise.

The Lord's people have a peace and rest of mind through the knowledge of the Lord's Plan, the knowledge of His Justice, Mercy and Love, and a blessed realization that He is our God. All these things give us peace and quiet and rest of mind. While the world are troubled more or less, God's children have a peace that the world knows not of, that the world can neither give nor take away. And when the trials are all over, the Lord will make up for all the troubles of the present time, for all His children have suffered. We shall then look back on these trials and consider them but light afflictions, only for a moment. – 2 Corinthians 4:17.

TESTS OF LOYALTY AND DEVOTION

When the Lord permits great clouds of trouble to come upon us, we should first look to see if we can discern any wrong-doing in ourselves which might properly bring chastisement. We should have joy in the Lord. But perhaps we have not been living close enough to the Lord. Yet these clouds of affliction do not necessarily mean that we have not been living close to Him, as we have seen in the case of Job.

We remember likewise in the experiences of our Lord Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane the night before His crucifixion, how He said to His disciples, Peter, James and John, "My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death." We remember that God did not give Him quietness, but allowed trouble like a great flood to sweep over His soul. He was troubled to know surely whether He had been entirely loyal, faithful and obedient, as was necessary to maintain the Father's favor. We are told by the Apostle Paul that our Lord Jesus "offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto Him that was able to save Him out of death – and was heard." – Hebrews 5:7.

We find that the Father sent His angel to minister unto His dear Son, in His deep distress. As soon as the angel had given our Lord the assurance of the Father that He was well pleasing in His life and conduct, He became perfectly calm. And the assurance sustained Him in all the trying experiences which followed – the trial before the Sanhedrin, before Pilate, the treatment of the soldiers, the journey on the way to Calvary, and in the midst of the trying process of execution which followed.

Only at the last, when the Father, because Jesus must take the sinner's place, withdrew His presence from Him in His dying moment did our Lord manifest disturbance of mind. Then He cried out in agony of soul, "My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?" It was necessary for our Lord to experience the entire cutting off from God [R5403 : page 54] and from all relationship to God, in order to pay the full penalty for Adam's sin. This experience was at the very last moment. The Heavenly Father permitted this, for it was necessary to our Lord that He should realize the meaning of the sinner's separation from God.

We do not consider it necessary that in every case our Lord's true and faithful followers should have a similar experience. We are not, as was our Redeemer, the Ransom, the Sin-bearer for the world; but it would not be surprising if some may have similar experiences to those of our Lord. Some of the saints have died, exclaiming: "I am sweeping through the gates of the New Jerusalem!" while others have had dying experiences more like those of our Lord, and have cried out, "My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?"

We can be content to leave our experiences entirely in the hands of Him who loves us, and can have an inward peace and calm and a rest of soul, knowing that no outward storm will be permitted but such as the Father sees will bring forth in us the peaceable fruits of righteousness, if we are properly exercised thereby.

RESTITUTION FOR MANKIND PICTURED

In the concluding chapters of the Book of Job, Jehovah addresses His afflicted servant, reproving his temerity in attempting, with his little knowledge, to judge God. This Job acknowledges, and finds peace in trusting God. Job's three friends, however, are severely reproved by God. But when they obey God and go to Job and offer up for themselves a burnt offering according to the Lord's commandment, and Job prays for them as God further instructed, they are restored to Divine favor. At once Job's prosperity returns – his friends and influence are restored; his wealth was exactly doubled, for he had twice as many flocks and herds and camels. He had also the same number of sons and daughters as before, and the Scriptures note that there were "no women found so fair as the daughters of Job."

This ending of Job's career with a general Restitution is incomprehensible to those who have never seen that the Plan of God in Christ provides for a "Time of Restitution" of all things lost in Adam, to all of his race who will accept them under the terms of the New Covenant. (Acts 3:19-21.) But those who do see this Plan of God can readily see, too, that Job's experience was not only actual, but also typical. He seems to represent mankind. Man was at first in the Divine likeness and favor, with all things subject to him. (Psalm 8:4-8.) Because of Adam's sin Satan obtained an influence in human affairs which has resulted in degradation, sickness and death. God, however, has never really forsaken His creatures, and is even now waiting to be gracious unto all in and through Christ Jesus our Lord.

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ENDURING HARDNESS AS GOOD SOLDIERS

"Thou, therefore, endure hardness as a good soldier of Jesus Christ." – 2 Tim. 2:3.
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HERE are many illustrations used in the Bible, and all of them very forceful. The one which represents the Christian as a soldier, has a great deal of meaning. We are not to suppose that the angels in Heaven are soldiers, nor that that term would be applicable to them. There is no war going on in Heaven, but there is a war going on here on earth.

Six thousand years ago our first parents became entrapped, and the whole race was sold under Sin – became the servants of Sin and Satan. More and more this influence has prevailed – not that all willingly surrender to Satan, but that he puts darkness for light and light for darkness, and thus deceives mankind and leads them captive at his will.

All who desire to be in harmony with God would be out of harmony with Satan and Sin. And they might at times have resisted these, and have tried to do God's will. But there was no organized undertaking for the overthrow of Sin until Jesus came. His mission was to overcome Satan, overcome Sin, and to bring everything into full harmony with God's arrangement. Earth, this [R5404 : page 54] province of God's great Empire, being in a rebellious state, needed to be conquered and restored, and Jesus undertook the work, with Divine backing.

The first step was laying down His own life as a Ransom-price for the sin of the whole world, and thus making good for the original transgression. But before taking His power and exercising it in the overthrow of Satan and Sin, Jesus, according to the Father's will, began the selection of a Church class, variously styled members of His Body, His Bride, His companions and brethren in the Kingdom, His Royal Priesthood, under Himself as the great Royal High Priest. All those who have heard the Message, and whose hearts have been responsive, who have recognized the wrong conditions here prevailing, and who have felt sympathy for the race that is here sold as slaves of Sin and Death – all these have been invited to become members of this select class.

TERMS OF WARFARE STATED AT BEGINNING

These were informed at the very beginning that it would be necessary for them to fight a good fight. They were invited to enlist in the army to battle against Satan, and instructed that they should have full confidence that ultimately faith would have its victory. They were also told that they must suffer, laying down their lives as their Head and Forerunner laid down His life – not living for the world, but contrariwise, accepting His arrangement and living altogether for the purpose of carrying out their consecration with Him.

The final honor to which God has invited them is to a share in His great Kingdom, with His Son. This implies a change of nature to all who have become soldiers of the Cross, followers of the Lamb; for "flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of God." These are called to forego the rights and privileges of the present time, and by their lives to leave their mark, for a testimony to the world, for the benefit of mankind, and especially for the glory of God and for the calling out of others who might desire similarly to walk in the narrow way.

The warfare that these are called upon to wage is a warfare against sin and the powers of darkness. (Eph. 6:11.) They are pledged to the Lord for right, for truth, for goodness. They are thus to fight the good fight. These soldiers will find, too, that some of their greatest difficulties are right in their own person. They have tendencies toward sin, because of being members of the human family, children of wrath, of sin, even as others. Their relationship to the Lord is as New Creatures.

SELF OUR SPECIAL FOE

The New Creature is obliged to fight against and to control the flesh. This is a great battle which each fights for himself. Each soldier may more or less assist and set an example to the other soldiers, but the chief battle is with himself. It is a hand-to-hand conflict. Although he is expected at all times to be on the alert against the wiles of Satan and the world, yet his special fight is with [R5404 : page 55] the enemies in his own flesh. St. Paul himself had taken the shield of faith – wherewith to quench the fiery darts of the wicked – and the helmet of salvation, and the Sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. Timothy was a young soldier, and the Apostle was encouraging him with advice. He had already come into the Lord's company, under the Lord's standard.

THE QUALITIES OF A GOOD SOLDIER

St. Paul intimates that any one of us may be a good soldier, or contrariwise, a bad soldier, a poor soldier. We can imagine some soldiers who would be very disregardful of orders, not prompt to obey the command of the Leader. We can see that a good soldier is (1) one who is very much in sympathy with the Captain of his Salvation. He is an intelligent soldier, and sees that he has on the proper armor, that he wears it properly and that he gets the very best possible use out of this armor. He sees that in his walk he has a soldierly bearing, as a proper representative of the King, and of the great Kingdom so near at hand.

(2) He is not ashamed of his flag, nor of the garment of Christ's righteousness. He is to lift up the standard of righteousness everywhere. He enlists in this warfare, knowing that it means his death – the death of the flesh, of the human nature. He is to be a good soldier – not merely outwardly loyal, merely wearing the uniform, but having the full spirit of the Cause. This means that whatever experiences come to him he is to receive these thankfully, and be glad to have the privilege of enduring something for His Captain and in the interests of the Kingdom to which he has sworn allegiance.

The thought which the Apostle is impressing is that all good soldiers should endure hardness – hard, distressing conditions, circumstances that are quite unpleasant, difficult. Earthly soldiers are obliged to tramp through water and mud, enduring long, wearisome marches. Sometimes they are short of rations, sometimes obliged to sleep on the ground. Sometimes their battles are waged in the face of great opposition.

So the soldier of Christ is to endure whatever experiences may come to him, under the guidance of his Captain, not only willingly, but gladly, rejoicing that he has been permitted to enter this army of the Lord, knowing that these experiences are working out for him "a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory." These various hard experiences of the Christian are designed to work out for his good, that he may "lay hold on eternal life," and gain a share in the Kingdom with his Redeemer.

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CARELESS LIVING A FORM OF PROFANITY

"Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain." – Exodus 20:7.
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HIS command was not given to the Gentiles; for the Lord had no dealings with the world. It was given to the Jewish people, who had come into relationship with God through the Law Covenant. We have every reason to believe that many of the Jews tried very hard outwardly to keep the Ten Commandments, the keeping of which meant life, the failure to keep which meant death. All of their endeavors failed, and they continued to die. – Romans 7:10.

Notwithstanding the endeavor of many to observe this command of our text, St. Paul declared respecting them that the name of God was blasphemed through them amongst the Gentiles. (Romans 2:24.) We cannot suppose that the grosser meaning of blasphemy was the Apostle's thought. Blasphemy was a terrible thing among the Jews. Even a parent who heard his own child blaspheme was instructed to stone that child to death for so doing. We suppose the Apostle meant that the kind of living practised among the Jews really blasphemed God's name before the world. They were professedly God's people. And if under Divine instruction, Divine care, and Divine recognition, they did the things dishonoring to God, they were blaspheming His name.

While the Ten Commandments were not given to the Church, yet every feature of the Ten Commandments is a command; for by the character of our consecration we are bound to seek to know God's will, even beyond the mere letter of His Word. Hence, while the Church is not under the Law Covenant, we are under the general instruction of the Ten Commandments. Therefore the Apostle says that "the righteousness of the Law [the true meaning of the Law] is fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit." – Romans 8:4.

It is not supposable that any real child of God, any consecrated follower of Christ, could have a desire to take the name of the Father in vain. Hence the apparent meaning of this command is not applicable to us; for since we have become His children, and have received His Spirit, it would be the farthest thing from us to wish to profane His name. But as the Jews profaned the name of the Lord by careless living amongst the Gentiles, so there is great danger of Christians profaning His name by careless living. And this is indicated in the Scriptures as being a danger.

Our Lord speaks of some who, at His Second Coming, will say, "Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Thy name, and in Thy name done many wonderful works, and in Thy name cast out devils?" And He will say, "I do not recognize you." They have been deceiving themselves. (Matthew 7:21-23.) They did not come in by the door of the sheep-fold, and have never been recognized by the Lord as His sheep. Amongst them there will perhaps be a great many who have done philanthropic and reform work.

But the thousand years of Christ's Reign will be the time when God will institute the real Reform Work, through Christ's Kingdom. Now the Lord is working in the hearts of His people, through His promises, seeking the particular class who are moved and exercised by these promises. Thus He is finding a Little Flock, a peculiar people, to be joint-heirs with Christ in His Kingdom.

LET US TAKE NOT HIS NAME IN VAIN

From this standpoint, all of God's people should be very much on guard that they do not take the name of the Lord in vain when they profess to be His people, His children – when they profess to be the followers of Jesus and call themselves Christians. It would be far better if many professed Christians did not take the name of Christian at all. The only ones who may properly take Christ's name are those who really become His disciples. The only condition under which any may become His disciple is to take up his cross and follow Him – give up his life, surrender his will.

Although this commandment was not given to Spiritual Israel, we can readily see how the spirit of it applies to [R5405 : page 56] us. We have taken the name of Christ as our name. We profess to be members of the Body of Christ. And the holy name of the Head belongs to all the members of His Body. The honored name of the Bridegroom belongs to His Espoused. What carefulness the thought of this should give us, and how appropriate it is that we should see to it that we have not taken that blessed name in vain; that we appreciate the honor, the dignity, the responsibility, of our position as His representatives and ambassadors in the world! Let us, therefore, walk circumspectly, taking earnest heed that we bring no dishonor to that hallowed name; but on the contrary, that we honor it in our every thought and word and deed.

"What manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation [behavior] and godliness?" "As He which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation [behavior]; because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy." – 2 Peter 3:11; 1 Peter 1:15,16.

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LAWFUL ON THE SABBATH
– MARCH 15. – LUKE 13:10-17; 14:1-6. –

"The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath."MARK 2:27.
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UCH confusion prevails amongst Christian people respecting the Sabbath day. One fruitful source of this confusion is that few realize that God's arrangements with the followers of Jesus are totally different from those which He made with Natural Israel under the Law Covenant. Everything under that Covenant was a type and contained a valuable lesson for Christians, but to mistake the type for the antitype is to confuse our minds and to miss the beauty and force of the antitype.

There was no Sabbath day before the Jewish Law, except in the sense that the word Sabbath signifies rest, and that we are informed that God rested on the seventh great Day, or Epoch, of the Creative Week. Enoch, who walked with God; Abraham, the friend of God, and others pleasing to the Lord, knew nothing about the Sabbath, even as they knew nothing about the Atonement Day and its sacrifices, or other matters appertaining to Israel's Law Covenant.

The Apostle Paul explains that the Israelites were a House of Servants, under Moses; but that the Church is a House of Sons, under Christ. (Hebrews 3:1-6.) God's method of dealing with the House of Servants would very properly be different from His method of dealing with the House of Sons. Commands are given to the servants without explanation why or wherefore. But the Apostle explains that God deals with us as with sons. To the true Christian the Heavenly Father makes known His plans, His purposes, His arrangements, in order that His sons, who have His Spirit, may sympathetically enter into those plans, by obedience to the extent of self-sacrifice, not because of command, but because of joy to do the Father's will.

Jesus and the Apostles were Jews, and were under obligation to the Law Covenant up to the time that Jesus by His death became the "end of the Law for righteousness to every one that believeth." Since that time the followers of Jesus are in no sense of the word bound by the Jewish Law. They are interested in the Ten Commandments, because those commandments in an outward way indicate the will of God; and all the sons of God are anxious to know the Father's will, that they may voluntarily do it. But God does not address the House of Sons, "Thou shalt not kill; thou shalt not steal"; for so surely as they have been begotten of the Holy Spirit at all, they will not wish to kill, nor wish to steal.

In dealing with the House of Sons God, through the Head of the House, has set up a new law, which is all-comprehensive and means much more than the Law of Moses was previously understood to signify. It is the Law of Love. As the Apostle declares, "Love is the fulfilling of the Law." The Law is comprehended in the one word Love – love supreme for God, and love for our fellow men. Finally, Jesus declared, "A new command I give unto you, that ye love one another as I have loved you." This He said to us who are laying down our lives one for the other.

SEVENTH DAY – FIRST DAY

Early in the Gospel Dispensation the followers of Jesus began to meet on the first day of the week. Apparently the custom had its start in the fact that Jesus rose from the dead on that day, and appeared several times on that day to His followers; and on the following first day of the week He appeared again. It became a custom amongst the disciples to have their fellowship on that day, not that it was commanded of the Lord, but because of their desire to remember the Master and to have fellowship with each other. Quite probably they kept the Sabbath day and the first day as well, for a time. They evidently had difficulty in realizing how completely they had passed from the domination of Moses and his Law to be under the headship of Jesus and His guidance – "the liberty wherewith Christ makes free" indeed.

Although Christians have now abandoned the observance of the seventh day in favor of the first day of the week, many erroneously think that God authorized the change. But not so; the Christian is not under law, but under grace. It was from privilege that the early disciples met together on the first day, and not by instruction of God. So it should be still, and so it is yet with some. True Christians cannot have too much opportunity for fellowship together for the study of the Heavenly Father's Word, and for offering Him the worship and homage of their hearts.

True Christians undoubtedly are glad that there is a special day of the week set apart, in which they can more particularly give themselves to prayer, worship, praise and Bible study, and good works – even though the enforcement of such a Sunday be by human law and through a misconception. Glad would many of the Lord's people be if their earthly affairs were so arranged as to permit of two Sundays in each week, or more. But in order to enjoy Sunday properly, the Lord's consecrated people should be freed from the misconceptions which so generally prevail.

THE SABBATH OF REST

Israel's Law provided two Sabbaths. One, every seventh year, found its multiple and fulfilment in the fiftieth year, the year of Jubilee and of full release. The other was every seventh day, and found its fulfilment through its multiple, in the fiftieth day – the day of Pentecost – the day which foreshadowed the rest into which the people of God may enter even now.

The Apostle refers to both of these in Hebrews 4:1-11. The Sabbath day has its fulfilment in the rest and peace of heart enjoyed by the antitypical Israelites. It is a perpetual Sabbath with them. They enter into rest. [R5405 : page 57] They have reached that place where they have the peace of God ruling in their hearts. They rest from their own works – from all hope that they could commend themselves to God by works of any kind, Sabbath keeping or otherwise. They enter into rest because they see that God has provided in Jesus the help necessary for all, that they are "complete in Him." This rest or peace no man taketh from them. It is theirs so long as they abide by faith in Christ, in God.

But, as the Apostle points out, "there remaineth a rest for the people of God" – a future rest. The Church will enter into that rest when they experience their resurrection change, when they are made like the Savior and enter into the joys of their Lord. That will be the complete rest. So far as the world is concerned, the great Messiah's Reign of a thousand years will be the Sabbath of the world in general, in which they will have the privilege of attaining perfection in every sense of the word and thus will enter into rest by coming into harmony with God.

Jesus did many of His miracles on the Sabbath days, partly no doubt to emphasize the fact that the great Sabbath, the thousand-year Day, the seventh thousand-year Day of earth's history, will be the time of His Kingdom, in which all mankind will be privileged to be healed from sin and sickness, sorrow and pain, and to be brought to the full perfection of human nature, to all that was lost in Adam and redeemed at Calvary.

TO DO GOOD ON THE SABBATH

Since Jesus according to the flesh was a Jew, and therefore bound by all the commandments of the Jewish Law, it follows that He could do nothing contrary to that Law. He could not set it aside, nor was it proper that he should explain to the Jews the real meaning of the Sabbath. All that would come later, under the Holy Spirit's instruction, after Pentecost, after the begetting of the Spirit; for "the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God, neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned." But Jesus could, and did, correct certain of the misapprehensions of the Law which had crept in through the teachings of their rabbis, the Doctors of the Law, and the Pharisees.

These for show exaggerated the letter of the Law in some respects, while they entirely ignored its spirit. Thus when the disciples of Jesus, passing through a wheat field, rubbed some of the grains in their hands to hull them before eating, the Pharisees complained that they were breaking the Sabbath – they were threshing and winnowing. Jesus showed that this was not the purport of the Law. It was not made to hinder any good or necessary work, but to benefit the people. According to the Doctors of the Law, to search for a biting flea would be sin [R5406 : page 57] on the Sabbath day, because it would be "hunting." Thus in various ways they made the reasonable Law of God to appear unreasonable to the people; and while thus particular in trifles, they ignored the weightier matters of the Law, which appertained to justice, love and mercy.

In the lesson before us we have two instances of healing on the Sabbath. A woman had an infirmity which had bowed her down for eighteen years. Jesus released her from her bondage on a Sabbath day. He laid His hands upon her and said, "Thou art loosed from thine infirmity"; and she was made straight and glorified God. But the ruler of the synagogue was indignant and said unto the people, There are six days in which you can come and be healed, and not on the Sabbath day.

This was intended as a special rebuke to Jesus, intimating that He was not so holy and so careful of the Sabbath as He should be, but was a violator of the Law. But Jesus replied: "Ye hypocrites! doth not each one of you on the Sabbath loose his ox or his ass from the stall, and lead him away to water? and ought not this woman, whom Satan hath bound, lo, these eighteen years, be loosed from this bondage on the Sabbath day?" And His adversaries were put to shame.

The other case was that of a man troubled with dropsy. Jesus, knowing their attitude of mind, discussed the subject in advance on this occasion, asking the Doctors of the Law and the Pharisees, "Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath day or not?" They made no answer. Then He took the sick man and healed him, and inquired of the critics, "Which of you having an ass or an ox fall into a pit would not straightway draw him out on a Sabbath day?" But they could not answer.

A proper understanding of the Sabbath, the rest which God has provided for His people, is a great blessing. "We who believe do enter into rest" – an abiding rest, a perpetual Sabbath. And all such are glad to have special opportunities, as these may present themselves, for gathering together in the name of the Lord, for worship, praise, study and fellowship. Without regard to which day, the Apostle suggests to us, Let us forsake not the assembling of ourselves together as the manner of some is; and so much the more, as we see the Day drawing on – the glorious Day of Messiah's Kingdom approaching, and the shadows of night and darkness, of ignorance and superstition passing away. – Heb. 10:25.

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PARABLES OF THE KINGDOM
– MARCH 22. – LUKE 13:18-30. –

"Not every one that saith unto Me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the Kingdom of Heaven; but he that doeth the will of My Father which is in Heaven."> – MATTHEW 7:21.
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EW apparently have noticed that nearly all of Jesus' teachings related to the Kingdom of God. This was because the Kingdom of God is the great Divine remedy promised for the release of mankind from the curse, and the blessing of the willing and obedient with an uplift out of sin and death conditions, a return to harmony with God and the everlasting life which He is pleased to give to all who love Him. All that took place in the world prior to the coming of Jesus was merely preparatory. Life and immortality had not even been brought to light before the First Advent. Thus we read, "Christ hath brought life and immortality to light through the Gospel." There were hints, suggestions and promises of coming blessings; but the method of procedure, etc., was not brought to light.

The typical sacrifices of Israel taught a great lesson; viz., that better sacrifices must be offered before the blessings could be received. The typical kingdom of Israel taught that Messiah would be a great King, and rule with great power. But when the last of the kings of David's line, Zedekiah, was dethroned, the Lord through the Prophet declared, "I will overturn, overturn, overturn it: until He come whose right it is; and I will give it unto Him." – Ezekiel 21:25-27. [R5406 : page 58]

The work of Jesus at His First Advent, His sacrificial death as an Atonement for man's sin, was necessary as the foundation or preliminary to the setting up of God's Kingdom for man's deliverance from the power of sin and death. But, although the Redeemer died eighteen centuries ago, the Kingdom is not yet set up. We are still praying, "Thy Kingdom come." Nevertheless, when enlightened by the words of our Lord and the Apostles, we see that the Divine program has not stopped. An elect Church is being sought, which is to be the Bride of Christ and His Joint-heir in His Kingdom, and not until this great work shall have been accomplished can the Kingdom come. After the full number of His elect Church shall have been perfected in the First Resurrection, they shall reign with Him, as He promised – "a Royal Priesthood"; "kings and priests unto God."

There should be no doubt that these features of the Plan of God constitute quite sufficient reasons why the Savior should preach and teach so much respecting the Kingdom. The different parables illustrative of the Kingdom treat it from different standpoints, just as we might take different photographs of persons or of a building, or of the same person or thing at different ages or stages of development or from different angles. So some of the parables of the Kingdom tell about the persecutions which would come upon those who would be the heirs of the Kingdom. Others tell that there would be a great outward appearance of prosperity, while the true Kingdom class would be still a Little Flock.

One parable at least tells about the future work of the Kingdom, after the Church is completed and sits with Christ in His Throne. This is the Parable of the Sheep and the Goats, which has its fulfilment positively dated by the expression, "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 the one from the other, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats." – Matthew 25:31,32.

This dividing of the world, the Gentiles, will progress for a thousand years, and eventually will make a most complete separation, identifying the sheep of the Lord's favor and introducing them to the blessings intended for them, and destroying the goat class as being really servants of sin and of Satan. These will go away into everlasting punishment, symbolized by fire. The punishment will be everlasting, even though they will be unconscious; for "the wages of sin is death," not torment. Therefore the everlasting punishment will be an everlasting death, from which there will be no redemption, no future recovery.

A GRAIN OF MUSTARD SEED

Two illustrations of the Kingdom occur in this lesson. In the one the Lord likens the Kingdom to a grain of mustard seed, which from a small beginning would become quite a large bush, and the birds of the air would lodge in its branches. This evidently was intended as a picture of the outward appearance of the Church – very prosperous, so prosperous as to invite the birds. Elsewhere Jesus declared that the birds represented the Wicked One and his agents, ever ready to take away the seed of Truth and to work adversely as respects the Gospel program. (Matthew 13:4,19.) In Revelation also the great Teacher speaks of the Church as becoming Babylon, confusion, and as being "a cage of every unclean and hateful bird." (Revelation 18:2.) The picture fits.

Again the Master illustrated the experiences of His Church as an embryotic Kingdom. His second parable tells of a woman who hid some leaven in three measures of meal until the whole batch was leavened. This, Bible students are coming to understand, signifies a corrupting of the Divine Message – the spiritual Food which God had prepared for the Church. A woman in symbolic language represents a church system; and the Master tells us that such a church system will mix leaven, or ferment, in the food of the family of God until the whole mass will be corrupted. For be it noted that leaven in the Bible is always used as a symbol of corruption, of sin. This parable shows that the faith once delivered to the saints would be lost, vitiated, mixed with error, until it would no longer be nourishing to the family. St. Paul pictures the same matter, saying that in the latter days "some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of demons." – 1 Timothy 4:1.

These false doctrines are what are troubling the people of God today. Our hearts are better than our heads; for the hearts of the consecrated are in tune with the Infinite One, while the creeds of the Dark Ages are quite out of tune. The blessings that are lately coming to Bible students are largely the result of breaking loose from the creeds formulated in the Dark Ages, and getting back to the teachings of Jesus, the Apostles and the Prophets – the only inspired authorities. Their words alone constitute the proper food whereby we are to be nourished. The Word of God is sufficient, that the man of God may be thoroughly furnished. – 2 Timothy 3:16,17.

Some dear Christian people, looking at matters evidently from a wrong angle, are still deceived into thinking that it is possible for the Church, as the Kingdom of God in an embryotic condition, to do the work which God assigns to that Church in her future glorified, perfected condition. Such shut their eyes to the fact that the number of heathen in proportion to the number of Christians [R5407 : page 58] doubles every century. Such try to count up Christians by the hundreds of millions, entirely ignoring the fact that Jesus has declared that the Gospel Church, the Elect, who are walking in His steps, will be altogether but a Little Flock. – Luke 11:32.

THE CALLED SAVED

The blessing of the heathen is not merely for those now living, but for all who have ever lived. Messiah's Kingdom will triumph gloriously in the Lord's due time. The knowledge of the glory of God will fill the whole earth (Isaiah 11:9), until none shall need to say to his neighbor or to his brother, Know thou the Lord; for all shall know Him. (Jeremiah 31:33,34.) It is in order that all may come to a knowledge of the Truth that God has promised that "there shall be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and of the unjust"; that "all that are in their graves shall hear the voice of the Son of Man and shall come forth." A faithful few will come forth to glory, honor, immortality and a share in the Kingdom; and the unreconciled many will come forth later, that the Love of God may be testified to them, and that they may have the opportunity of the rewards and chastisements of the Kingdom, to help them back to all that was lost in Adam and redeemed at Calvary.

Some inquired of the Lord, Will there be but few saved? Jesus did not give a direct answer to the question, doubtless for two reasons: (1) The Holy Spirit had not yet come, and His followers could not then be prepared to understand the Plan of God thoroughly. (2) It was [R5407 : page 59] not due time to explain all the particulars of the spiritual salvation of the Church, to be like unto her Lord, and then later the human Restitution of the world to the image and likeness of the first Adam. Jesus applied the matter to His hearers personally, saying: "Strive ye to enter in [to the Kingdom] by the narrow door; for many, I say unto you will seek to enter in, and shall not be able. When once the Master of the House is risen up and shut to the door, and ye begin to stand without, and to knock at the door, saying, Lord, open unto us, He shall answer and say to you, I know you not whence ye are."

For a certain period of time the door to the High Calling of the Church stands ajar. Jesus opened up this new way of life through the veil; that is to say, His flesh – His sacrifice. (Hebrews 10:19,20.) The possibilities of entering into this way were first presented to the Jews; and after finding the suitable ones of that people, God has directed the Message hither and thither amongst the Gentiles for these more than eighteen centuries. Apparently the gathering of the Elect has been nearly completed. As soon as the last one completing the elect number shall have qualified for glory and shall have passed through the door, it will shut.

About that time, a great awakening of religious thought will come to the world, in the midst of a great Time of Trouble. Then many will begin to say that they have been neglecting the great Prize, that they have failed to purchase the pearl of great price on the cheap terms on which it was offered to them – their little all. Then there will be great lamentation amongst this class, and a crying, Lord, Lord, are we not to be of the Bride class? But the Lord will disown them as respects the Bride company. Then they will be in great sorrow. Weeping and gnashing of teeth will prevail. This will not be in some far-off place of eternal torment, as once we supposed; but, as the narrative intimates, it will be right here on the earth, amongst a class who neglected the privileges of the High Calling when they knew of it.

Bringing the matter down to His hearers, but still leaving it applicable to all who have heard the Message throughout the Gospel Age, the Lord intimates that some of these will have been in close touch with Him and His followers. They had a form of godliness and claimed to have done many mighty works, yet the Lord will disown them as respects any privileges in the Kingdom. They will not even have a share in the earthly kingdom. It will be given to the Worthies of the past who lived and died before the High Calling was opened up.

Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and all the Prophets and faithful ones of the past are to be Princes in all the earth, the visible representatives of the invisible Messiah and His Church in glory. The heirs of the Kingdom will not be entirely Jewish, because the Jews as a nation were not sufficiently holy and because the Lord could accept only the holy. When the call to joint-heirship in the Kingdom would go out to the Gentiles, some would come from the East, the West, the North and the South, and have a share in the Kingdom. The Jews were first in God's favor and the Gentiles last; yet some of the first with privilege and opportunity would fail.

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WHAT DOTH JEHOVAH REQUIRE?
– MARCH 29. – MATTHEW 7:24-29. –

"What doth Jehovah require of thee, but to do justly, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with thy God?" – MICAH 6:8.
J
ESUS sought to impress upon His hearers that it was not sufficient for them to hear that a Kingdom of God was coming, and that it would bring certain blessings to the world. It was not sufficient that they should know that a Kingdom class was being called out of the world to be Messiah's joint-heirs in that Kingdom. Action would be necessary on their part if they would attain to this high privilege which God had granted to them. "Show me thy faith without thy works, and I will show thee my faith by my works," wrote St. James. Not that we are to attain the Kingdom by our works; for, imperfect through the fall, we are unable to do perfect works, acceptable to God. It will be our faith in God and in the Lord Jesus that will bring us the victory, if we gain it; but the victory will be accounted only to those who shall, to the best of their ability, work out their salvation with fear and trembling. God will work in such, and through Christ bring them off conquerors, yea, more than conquerors.

Jesus gave an illustration, or parable, declaring that those who heard His Message and rendered obedience thereto would be like a wise man, who built his house upon the rock, where the descending rains would not wash away the foundation from underneath, nor in any wise harm it. The storms of life are sure to come; and the great crisis of life, death, is sure to come. Amidst those trials there will be calmness, confidence and security for such as have accepted the Lord's arrangement and have been walking to the best of their ability in the footsteps of Jesus. To them death will be merely a transition from the earthly state to the Heavenly, by the power of the First Resurrection – "changed in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye"; for "flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of God." (1 Corinthians 15:50-52.) Their faith and confidence, built upon God's promises, can never fail them. For such there is laid up a crown of life, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give them at that Day. – 2 Timothy 4:8.

On the other hand, Jesus intimates that many who heard His words and expressed great appreciation of them, would fail to take the proper steps to attain the glorious Kingdom privileges which He presented. They would allow custom, habit, love of pleasure, love of ease, the spirit of the world, to hinder them, either from making the proper, full devotion of themselves to God, or from carrying out that purpose. Such indeed might to some extent encourage themselves with hopes of the Kingdom which would never be realized, because they never took the proper steps. They did not build their faith upon the proper foundation. Perhaps some of them built upon the Law, and thought that they could commend themselves to God by their own endeavors, without the imputation of the merit of Christ. Such would be greatly mistaken. "Other foundation can no man lay than that which God has laid – Jesus Christ." His death is our redemption-price, and His appearance in glory as our Advocate is to make good for our unintentional shortcomings.

With all such, the day of stress and trial will surely come; and their faith structure, being without a proper foundation, will give way. They will suffer the loss of all their hopes. This, however, does not signify, as many of us once supposed, that they will go to eternal torment. Evidently nearly all Christian people, misled by the [R5407 : page 60] creeds of the Dark Ages, read into the Word of God many things which it does not at all contain.

COMPARE ST. PAUL'S PARABLE

The Apostle Paul used a similar illustration, saying, "Other foundation can no man lay than that which is laid – Jesus Christ." "But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon"; for the Day that cometh shall try every man's work of what sort it is. Those building with the gold, silver and precious stones of Divine Truth, developing their faith and character in harmony with the Divine requirements and arrangements, will suffer no loss in the great trial day at the end of this Age. But others who build with the wood, hay and stubble of human tradition and self-complacency, will find that their entire faith structure will be consumed; for the fire of that Day shall try every man's work of what sort it is. – 1 Corinthians 3:10-15.

Nevertheless, the Apostle tells us that even those who will suffer the loss of their faith structure, if they have built upon Christ, will themselves be saved, though so as by fire. They will be what is sometimes termed a tribulation class, described in Revelation 7:14-17: "These are [R5408 : page 60] they that have come out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. Therefore are they before the Throne of God, and serve Him in His Temple day and night." On these, God has various blessings to bestow. These will be in proportion to their obedience and loyalty and faith.

The class that the Apostle mentions as building with gold, silver and precious stones, will be a Little Flock, a Royal Priesthood, who will sit in the Throne, wearing the crowns, and be joint-heirs with Jesus in the Kingdom. But the class building upon the Rock without proper materials, yet saved so as by fire, will be the Great Company class, the antitype of the Levites, who instead of being in the Throne, will before the Throne serve those in the Throne; instead of wearing crowns, they will be granted palm branches, indicating a victory of an inferior kind. The priestly class will be the antitypical Temple of God; the Levite class, the Great Company, will serve God in and through that Temple class.

Nor is this all of the salvation which God has purposed. These two classes include merely the spirit-begotten ones of this Gospel Age. The Ancient Worthies are to constitute another class of saved ones – saved to an earthly perfection, to be princes in all the earth, glorious representatives of the invisible, spiritual, Heavenly Kingdom class. Then finally will come the blessing of all the families of the earth who shall prove willing and obedient during the thousand years of the Kingdom Reign, and who will be gradually lifted up, up, out of sin and degradation, by resurrection power, back to all that was lost in Adam and redeemed through the precious blood of Jesus. On the other hand, all intelligent, wilful opposers of God and righteousness, after a certain period of opportunity, will be destroyed in the Second Death – whether they belong to the class that is now on trial, a class of spirit-begotten ones, or to the class which will be on trial during the period of Messiah's Reign. "All the wicked will God destroy."

THE PEOPLE WERE ASTONISHED

No wonder the people were astonished at such doctrines as Jesus gave forth, even though they but imperfectly understood these, for none could perfectly understand except through the enlightening influence of the Holy Spirit, which was not yet given because Jesus was not yet glorified. (John 7:39.) The teachings of Jesus had a positiveness quite different from the various speculations and wonderings of the scribes. So it is always with the Truth. Wherever there is confusion and mysticism, we may be sure there is error and ignorance. Hence the necessity that all who preach Christ should have the anointing, or ordination, to preach, which God alone gives through the begetting of the Holy Spirit.

OUR GOLDEN TEXT

"What doth Jehovah require of thee, but to do justly, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with thy God?" At first one might be inclined to say, Why, that is different! There is nothing in that text of Scripture to say that in order to be an heir of the Kingdom one must take up his cross, deny himself and follow in the footsteps of Jesus, self-sacrificingly!

This is true; but we should notice that the one is a requirement and the other a privilege. God does not require sacrifice. What He requires is loyalty and obedience, but not sacrifice. Whatever is sacrificial is so much more than the Divine Law requires. Thus in the case of Jesus, the Divine Law could not require Him to do more than to obey it – to love God with all His heart, mind, soul and strength, and to love His neighbor as Himself. But could not all this have been done by Jesus without the laying down of His life at all! Surely! Hence the Scriptures represent that when Jesus presented Himself at Jordan, He consecrated all that He had to do the Father's will, even unto death – not merely to keep the Law. He delighted to do the Father's will, even beyond what the Father demanded in the Law. (Hebrews 10:5-7.) And so must it be with all who would be acceptable footstep followers of Jesus and attain with Him glory, honor and immortality on the Heavenly plane.

The Prophet Micah addressed the Jews, and his message was from the standpoint of the Law. He was encouraging the Jews to do their best to fulfil its requirements. Nevertheless, we know that no Jew ever fulfilled the Law except Jesus, because all except Him were fallen, imperfect. He alone was "holy, harmless, undefiled and separate from sinners."

During the Millennial Kingdom of Messiah, this same Law of God, given to the Jews through Moses, will be given to the whole world of mankind through Messiah. The requirements will be to do justly, to love kindness, to walk humbly with God. The reason why Messiah's ministration of this Law will be a success, while Moses' ministration of it was a failure, so far as bringing any to perfection was concerned, is that Messiah's Kingdom will be fully prepared and authorized to forgive sinners and to help them up out of their imperfections – back to the image and likeness of God as it was originally represented in Father Adam.

The privilege and right to thus forgive sins and to thus lift the sinner out of degradation belongs to Messiah, by virtue of His sacrifice for sins which He finished on Calvary. The right to life which He there laid down without forfeiting He will be prepared to give to mankind during the Millennium; and only the wilful rejectors will perish in the Second Death.

"O! we long to see Thy glory
Streaming wide o'er all the earth;
Every error, old and hoary,
Flee to realms that gave them birth.

"For this glorious culmination,
Not for long shall Zion wait:
Soon will come her coronation;
Lo, her King is at the gate."

[R5408 : page 61]

INTERESTING QUESTIONS
HOW DID SAUL OF TARSUS SEE JESUS?

QUESTION. – "And last of all He was seen of me also, as of one born out of [before the] due time." (1 Cor. 15:8.) How could Saul of Tarsus have seen Jesus, if He was personally in Heaven, and was to remain there until the end of the Age?

Answer. – The Lord evidently designed that Saul should have the opportunity of being the twelfth Apostle, to take the place of Judas. In order to be an Apostle, it was necessary that he should be a witness to our Lord's resurrection. And so Saul of Tarsus was given a demonstration which made him an eye witness to the fact of the Lord's resurrection from the dead. He tells of it in this way: after detailing how Jesus had been seen of above five hundred brethren at one time, St. Paul says, "And last of all, He was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time."

The miracle that was performed to enable Saul to see Jesus was not sufficient to save his eyes. If Jesus had been a flesh being, Saul's eyes would have been spared. But the fact that he was permitted to see, and with unveiled eyes (for it is not the natural order of things for a natural eye to see a spirit being), is a proof that some power was miraculously exercised which enabled him to see the Lord.

As to how this comports with the thought that Jesus went away, and that the Heavens were to retain Him until the end of the Age, we have this to say: He left the world, telling His disciples that in the end of the Age He would come in great glory to establish His Kingdom. But nothing in this statement indicates that He might not be present at some time previous to this. This may be illustrated in the typical Atonement Day sacrifices. The High Priest went into the Most Holy and offered the blood of the bullock; then he came out again and offered his second sacrifice, the goat. He then returned to the Most Holy.

"SITTING ON THE RIGHT HAND" A FIGURE

The Lord came to earth and was present among men. He finished the work that He had to do here. Then He ascended and appeared in the presence of God (the antitypical Most Holy) to make an appropriation of His merit (the blood of the antitypical bullock) on our behalf. We read that, having finished this work, He sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on High, until the time should come when the Kingdom would be delivered over to Him, and His enemies would be made His footstool. But the words sat down do not mean that He sat down on a literal seat, and has remained inactive during this Age. The thought is that He was seated at the Father's right hand in the sense of being given this permanent position of honor, dignity.

The Scriptures declare that at His Second Coming, our Lord will be seen "sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of Heaven." (Matt. 26:64.) We understand, then, that it was in the official sense that He left the earth for the entire Gospel Age, giving up all work as a man – and all work directly for mankind, until the close of the Age. But He appeared to Saul, to enable him (as before stated) to be the twelfth Apostle, in order to fulfil the Scripture statements concerning Judas. (Psa. 109:7,8; Acts 1:15-20.) This seems to have been an exceptional matter; for the power of the Holy Spirit was to operate in the world during this Gospel Age. We understand that Saul of Tarsus had only a momentary glimpse of our Lord. [R5409 : page 61]

GIVING COUNSEL TO ONE IN TROUBLE

Question. – If a person in deep distress of mind should appeal to us for counsel, should we refuse to listen lest we thereby be hearing evil or evil speaking of another?

Answer. – We should not refuse to hear one who is in deep distress of mind and who comes to us for counsel. But we should suggest to the one in trouble, Now perhaps there is something about this matter which might be a reflection upon another. Perhaps you can state the trouble in such a way as not to tell me the name, and without even describing the person, so that I would be able to recognize him from the description. Thus, too, I might be able to give unbiased advice. If we found that another was involved, we would inquire, Have you fulfilled the requirements of Matt. 18:15? Have you spoken to the person?

If he answers in the affirmative, we should ask, And it makes no impression? And is he [or she] still continuing the wrong-doing? If he says that the party is not now continuing the wrong, but that he has made no apologies, then we would say, But we cannot require one to apologize. We can merely require him to cease from doing injury. You may be very thankful to the Lord that you have been relieved from the pressure of the trial.

Or the person might tell us that he had taken the Scriptural step, and that the party still continues to do injury. Then we would say, Have you taken the next step – to take two witnesses and go to Him? If he says Yes, we would advise, Then just continue to the conclusion. You have done well thus far. If he said that he had taken the two witnesses and they had followed the course laid down in Matt. 18:15 very carefully, and that the injury had been stopped, we would say, Well, then, I would stop also. You have no authority to punish him. That belongs to God.

If the brother should say that he had taken the two parties and had gone to the offender, and that he would not listen to them, and that the wrong still continues, then we would advise that he go to the two and ask them to join him in bringing the matter before the Church – preferably one of the two being an elder – for they should go primarily to the Elders. If the Elders are not such persons that confidence could be placed in them in such a matter, they are not suitable for Eldership. And the one who was the Elder would be the proper one to bring the matter before the Church. Up to this time the case should not be discussed outside of these two witnesses.

THE LORD LOVETH A CHEERFUL GIVER

Question. – "Upon the first day of the week let every one of you lay by him in store, as God has prospered him, that there be no gathering when I come." (1 Cor. 16:2.) Does this injunction apply to all the Lord's people?

Answer. – We understand that the principle applies to all. This is not a law, however. The Apostle did not make laws for the Church. He would not have had authority to make laws. He taught that all of the Lord's people are put on their own responsibility as to the use of the things they have sacrificed to the Lord.

What God commands is to be esteemed, not as a matter of sacrifice, but of obedience. Under the Jewish Law, each of the Lord's people, each Natural Israelite, was directed to give a tithe, a tenth. If he made a hundred dollars a month and gave one tenth of it, it would be ten dollars; if he made fifty dollars a month and gave a tenth of it, it would be five dollars. But the fifty dollars, or the one hundred dollars would include all that he would earn each month – not the net earnings, but the gross earnings. [R5409 : page 62]

If out of a hundred dollars the Israelite, after paying his tithe, was obliged to spend forty dollars for rent, ten dollars for gas, thirty dollars for food, ten dollars for himself and ten dollars for his wife, he would be out exactly ten dollars, or he would have to cut off five dollars from his wife's allowance and five from his own.

But Christians are not compelled to give one tenth. There are some in the Bethel family, however, who are giving one tenth. One of the family recently gave one fifth out of the net. We think a principle is here involved – a principle of sacrifice; and that if we follow the Apostle's advice, we would lay by something every week or every month to give to some who are in real need, and thus exercise a spirit of benevolence, like our Heavenly Father, and that we may be able to have at least a small share in the support of the Lord's work. We believe that to whatever extent we have this thought before our minds we are likely to have a special blessing. "He that watereth shall be watered also himself." – Prov. 11:25.

"THE RIGHTEOUSNESS WHICH IS OF FAITH"

Question. – "But the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into Heaven (that is, to bring Christ down from above), or who shall descend into the deep (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead)?" (Romans 10:6,7.) What is meant by one's descending into the deep, to bring Christ from the dead, and by ascending into Heaven to bring Him down from Above?

Answer. – The Apostle here means that some in his time were doubting and did not believe the Message that the Messiah had come. They might have said that Jesus was a wonderful man, and that He did many wonderful works. But they were saying, "We do not believe that He was the Messiah and was put to death and then rose again. If you are willing to say that He was only a good man, we can accept that assertion, and are ready to call ourselves Christians. But harmony with God can be attained only by keeping the Law."

This, the Apostle said, is not the language of faith. The Christian exercises faith in the Gospel Message. He does not ask how any one could go to Heaven to bring Jesus down to earth, or how any could go down to the grave and bring Him up. A Christian will accept the facts as they are. Others are not in the attitude to believe God. The essential features of the Gospel are that Jesus came from above – that He was holy, harmless and undefiled, and gave Himself a Ransom-price for sinners. God recognized the merit of His work and raised Him from the dead, and He ascended on High, there to appear in the presence of God – first for the Church class, later for the world. All this the Christian accepts by faith.

[R5409 : page 62]

SOME INTERESTING LETTERS
PERSONAL AND CLASS RIGHTS
DEARLY BELOVED PASTOR: –

I have never thought it wise or expedient to write to you before, except on one occasion, and then only to express my love and to inform you that I had taken the Vow. I feel the same reluctance in writing now, lest I unwisely interfere with your time, but feel that it is the proper thing to do.

For a time some of the brethren have been holding in their homes regular meetings which have not been arranged for by the Church. In some cases these meetings are conducted by brethren who are neither Elders nor Deacons. In other cases, certain Deacon brethren in their love and zeal found an opportunity for assisting some beginners, and after a time began holding regular meetings in their interest, confining their meetings to evenings which did not conflict with the regular meetings of the Church.

These matters came before the Church and were discussed, resulting in the following Resolution, which was voted upon and carried:

Resolved – That, while we do not question for one moment the good intentions, love and zeal for the Lord and the brethren, on the part of those who may participate, in our judgment, the holding of regular meetings in __________, apart from those arranged by the Church as a whole, are not to the spiritual benefit of the Church of __________, tending, amongst other things, to prevent amongst the whole body here, that full measure of fellowship which we feel so greatly in need of at the present time.

Personally, I supported the Resolution when it was voted upon. Later, after some misgivings as to whether I had acted wisely, I began giving the matter much prayerful thought, searching through the TOWERS and the Volumes for all the help I could find. Eventually, I came to the conclusion that so far as I was concerned I had made a mistake, and had participated in a Resolution that to my mind has the tendency to interfere with the freedom and liberty of others.

Last night at a regular business session, the matter came up again for discussion, the brethren interested in some of these meetings having addressed a letter to the Church, requesting the Church to appoint a chairman for their meetings. After three hours' discussion the matter remains unsettled. And now I find myself confronted with a serious problem, which is giving me much concern. I find myself taking the opposite view from the other Elders, and standing alone as an Elder in the position I have taken; namely, that the Resolution which we passed was unwise and inexpedient, having a tendency to destroy personal liberty, and being specially injurious to some of our brethren.

The position is taken that the passing of this Resolution does not tend to bondage nor in any way to interfere with the rights of others. But to me it now appears as being in a measure, "an appearance of evil," which I desire to avoid, having in my mind this thought, that the good which might be accomplished by the Resolution from one standpoint, would be more than offset by the injury it might do from another viewpoint.

I have not been and will not be contentious, but I do want [R5410 : page 62] to know and to do the Lord's will; and finding myself taking the opposite view from the other Elders and some of the other members of the Class, I feel greatly concerned and ask your advice. Taking into consideration the present and future interests of the Class, I feel that the matter is now too important to be in doubt about. I am,

Your brother in His blessed service,

J. J. B.

OUR REPLY TO THE FOREGOING

We have endeavored to set forth in STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES, Vol. VI., what we believe to be the Scriptural teaching covering the queries of this letter. Repeating now, and seeking to make the matter applicable to the case in question, we would say:

Each spirit-begotten child of God, by virtue of his anointing, has a right to speak, to preach, to declare his Heavenly Father's Word and Message. The right to preach is not confined to bishops, nor to those upon whom they lay their hands, nor to Elders and Deacons chosen in the Scriptural manner by the stretching forth of the hands of the Ecclesia. There are natural limitations, of course, such as lack of ability, from any cause, to hold the attention of an audience. Except the Apostle's restriction that the sisters are not to do public preaching, there are none.

With this broad view of the Divine commission, the anointing or authorization of the Holy Spirit, we perceive that none has a right to interfere with another. As Jesus said to the Apostle John, "Forbid him not." – Mark 9:39.

However, while none may interfere with or bind his brother, we may give over some of our own liberties. Recognizing that God is a God of order, and that every good work is prospered by order, and following the instructions of our Lord that His followers should assemble themselves together as one body, we realize that in taking our places in the body, we lose some of our own personal independence, liberties, privileges. We are glad to do this, for we believe it to be the Lord's will, because He instructs us: "Forget not the assembling of yourselves together." So all who thus become associates, or members, in a class of Bible students thereby surrender individual rights. They operate as a Class, deciding which meetings are necessary and which are unnecessary, which of their number would best lead and serve the class, which render other service, etc. [R5410 : page 63]

From this viewpoint, it would not be proper for brethren associated in a Class to start new Classes and still consider themselves members of the original Class. For a member of a Class to individually start another Class separate from anything provided for by his Class, would mean to ignore it, to break off his relationship with the older Class and would indicate that he would no longer in any sense of the word recognize himself, either as a servant of that Class, or as a member of it, or as a sharer in its privileges. In reassuming his own personal liberty he laid down his privileges as a member of the Class.

Hence from this standpoint we would say, that the brethren and sisters who participated in the organizing of the new Classes evidently had only the best intentions, and quite probably did not consider at the time the real force and meaning of their action in organizing the Classes.

It would look, too, as though the parent Class and its Elders and Deacons had not fully provided for all the desires and necessities of the Class; otherwise there would have been no incentive or reason for the starting of new Classes aside from their arrangements. A sharp look out by the servants of the Class should always be maintained, to see that the spiritual needs of the interested are supplied; and a sufficient number of Elders and Deacons should be chosen and appointed.

While we sympathize with the sentiments of those who drew up the Resolution, we incline to doubt the wisdom of the movement. We believe that the better way for all concerned would be for all parties to confess their error. The Class and the Elders might very properly say: "We regret, dear brethren and sisters, that we had not such a grasp of the situation as would have enabled us at the time properly to supply the needs of the Class as respects meetings. We promise to do our duty more faithfully in the future."

Those who started the new Classes would, we think, do well to say: "We regret, dear brethren and sisters, that we did not take a broad enough view of the subject and put in a request for the meeting, to the intent that the need might have been supplied through appointments by the Class."

With such apologies and resignations, we believe the entire matter will adjust itself and everybody feel relieved of a tension, and quite probably the results will not be far different from what they are now, except that the new meetings will be under the appointment of the original Class.

CLOSE OF THE ANTITYPICAL ATONEMENT DAY
DEAR PASTOR RUSSELL: –

Loving greetings in the dear Redeemer. Our prayers are daily offered for you, dear Brother, both on your own personal account and as the Lord's servant in this, the time of the Harvest.

We have read with deep interest the various articles which have appeared in THE WATCH TOWER, especially those of recent date, re 1914 as the end of the Harvest, or more strictly speaking, the end of the Times of the Gentiles. We have seen nothing in these articles which justifies the statement of some of the friends that "Pastor Russell has changed his views respecting what may be expected in October, 1914." On the contrary, if we have read the articles aright, and we believe we have, your views are still the same. We think, however, that these articles express the greatest moderation towards any who may desire to think otherwise.

To come to the point, or the reason for intruding this letter upon your valuable time, may we offer the following for your consideration?

Recently, when thinking over Amos 8:9, we were impressed with the thought that the Lord Jesus as Lord of the Harvest holds in His own power the closing of the present noon-day favors and privileges which are ours; and further, that the Lord Jesus Himself will close the present Harvest work suddenly. This thought stimulates us to greater zeal.

The thought later came into mind that as our Lord's earthly career was marked at its close by an eclipse in the physical heavens, the sun being darkened, perhaps the Lord might mark the close of Harvest privileges by a similar eclipse. I attach hereto a sheet taken from a 1914 Almanac. Please note No. III., "A Total Eclipse of the Sun, August 21st, beginning at sunrise, visible to the northeast portion of the United States and Canada. Visible also to North Atlantic Ocean, Europe, Asia and Africa" – practically the entire world.

Reference to the little "Morning Resolution" card shows that following this day there are just forty days left to the close of September. If the above surmise be true, how fitting it is that the last forty days of the Age should be the testing time of the Feet Members of the Body of Christ under the fiery trials already promised! Such a fact would again demonstrate that our God is an exact Timekeeper to a day.

Excluding the above speculation, the year 1914 presents some extremely interesting chronological data, as follows:

I. STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES, VOL. 2, page 60, paragraph 3, points out that the fourteenth of Nisan rarely falls on a Friday. This date, marking the Passover celebration of the Jews and the Memorial of Christ's death among Christians, falls on Friday, April 10th, this year. This enables Christians of practically all denominations to celebrate the same event on the same day, likewise the friends in Present Truth.

II. The Jewish New Year does not come about October 1st, as is generally the case. The attached Calendar sheet shows that it begins with sunset, September 20th. Ten days later is the marked off period, or day, for the annual Atonement Day of the Jews. How fitting it would be for God to have marked the close of the great Atonement Day of this Age with the anniversary of the typical Atonement Day!

Ever praying the Lord's rich blessing upon you, and that the end of the way may be crowned with an abundant entrance into His everlasting Kingdom, I am,

Yours in the service of our dear Redeemer,

__________.

HOPE BUILT ON JESUS' BLOOD AND RIGHTEOUSNESS
OUR DEAR BROTHER IN THE LORD: –

A number of the brothers and sisters of the Winnipeg Ecclesia have expressed their desire to write you, and as each gave expression to the thought, we decided that one letter would suffice, knowing that we are all partakers of the same grace and baptized with the same spirit; therefore our thoughts in this are one.

The circumstances which have given rise to this desire have been many, but chief among them has been our appreciation of the "meat in due season," on which we have been feasting through the columns of THE WATCH TOWERS and DAWNS. Truly can we say that we thank God upon every remembrance of you, always making mention of you in our prayers to the Throne of Heavenly Grace. The fact that the realization of our glorious hope is now fast approaching, yea even at the door, has caused one and all to look to the source from which our first light came, and to earnestly look for and appreciate more. Our hearts therefore are brimming over with love and affection for you, also with humble gratitude to our Heavenly Father for the way in which he has used you and ourselves in this most wonderful Harvest Work.

The time features, which have been the general trend in the last issues of THE TOWER, remain the same to us. With great distinctness do they point out to us that each must work out his own salvation with fear and trembling. We most heartily coincide with your viewpoint in the matter that if it is His will we should be required to wait a little while longer, we will still glorify Him for the privilege of witnessing to the world the fact that our hope is not built upon the close proximity of the consummation, but rather upon Jesus' blood and righteousness.

Our Beloved Brother, we have taken as our slogan the few words you gave us – "Let brotherly love continue" – and we one and all find in it, not the word of man only, but verily the Word of God, whom we all adore. Using it as a touchstone to all of our diseases it works as if by magic.

Were we to write innumerable letters we could not express all we wish to say, so we hope and trust that from these few words you may receive a little comfort and assurance that your short sojourn with us last Summer has borne much fruit, and should it be our Father's will that we may not be permitted to see your dear face again this side of the veil, we know we shall see you at the Great Assembly of the Firstborns in the Kingdom.

Leaving you with that peace which is the heritage of our Master, and in which we all rejoice, bound by that blest tie,

Your co-laborers in His Service,

SIGNED BY EIGHT BROTHERS AND TWO SISTERS.

page 63

I.B.S.A. BEREAN BIBLE STUDIES FOR THE MONTH OF MARCH.
QUESTIONS FROM MANUAL ON SECOND SERIES, "STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES."
Week beginning March  1...............Questions  1 to  8
 "       "       "    8...............    "      9 to 16
 "       "       "   15...............    "     17 to 24
 "       "       "   22...............    "     25 to 31
 "       "       "   29...............    "     32 to 40

Question Manuals on VOL. II., STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES, 5c. each, or 50c. per doz., postpaid.