page 369
December 15th
ZION'S
WATCH TOWER
and
Herald of Christ's Presence

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

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

SEMI-MONTHLY
VOL. XXXIDECEMBER 1No. 23
A.D. 1910--A.M. 6038


CONTENTS

Views From The Watch Tower371
Labor and Anti-Militarism371
The Worm at the Social Core372
The New and Wonderful Torpedoes372
Fifty-Seven Methodist Preachers Resign372
Germany as War Instructor of Non-Christian Nations373
Baptist D.D.'s Disagree373
Morgan to Manage Church Unity Movement374
The Recent London Meetings375
Jacob and Esau in a New Light376
The Young Man's Error377
King Rehoboam's Unwisdom377
Ability and Opportunity Misused378
National Reform of Old379
The God of Battle380
Hidden Things Shall Be Revealed (Poem)380
Some Interesting Letters381
Berean Questions in Scripture Studies382

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

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

page 370

THIS JOURNAL AND ITS SACRED MISSION

THIS 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 man," "a ransom
for all," and will be "the true light which lighteth
"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 & TRACT SOCIETY
CHARLES T. RUSSELL, PRESIDENT
"BROOKLYN TABERNACLE," 13-17 HICKS ST.,
BROOKLYN, N.Y., U.S.A.

Foreign Agencies:--British Branch: 24 Eversholt St., London, N.W. German Branch: Unterdorner Str., 76, Barmen. Australasian Branch: Flinders Building, Flinders St., Melbourne.


ANNUAL SUBSCRIPTION PRICE, $1.00 (4s.) IN ADVANCE.
SEND MONEY BY EXPRESS, BANK DRAFT, POSTAL ORDER, OR REGISTERED.
FROM FOREIGN COUNTRIES BY FOREIGN MONEY ORDERS, ONLY.


Terms to the Lord's Poor as Follows:--All Bible Students who, by reason of old age, or other infirmity or adversity, are unable to pay for this Journal, will be supplied Free if they send a Postal Card each May stating their case and requesting its continuance. We are not only willing, but anxious, that all such be on our list continually and in touch with the Studies, etc.



ALSO FRENCH, GERMAN, SWEDISH AND DANISH EDITIONS.
SAMPLE COPIES FREE.


ENTERED AS SECOND-CLASS MAIL MATTER AT BROOKLYN, N.Y., POSTOFFICE ENTERED AS SECOND-CLASS MATTER AT THE POSTOFFICE DEPT., OTTAWA, CANADA

INTERNATIONAL BIBLE STUDENTS ASSOCIATION MEETINGS


ALLEGHENY, PA., DEC. 9

Meeting for the interested at 7:30 p.m., in the Chapel, 612 Arch Street.

CHICAGO, ILL., DEC. 10

Afternoon Service for the interested at 3 o'clock. Jewish Mass Meeting at 8 o'clock, specially requested by Chicago Jews desirous of hearing on Zionism in prophesy. Both meetings to be held in the Seventh Regiment Armory, 34th St. and Wentworth Ave. For entertainment of friends who remain over night, address Dr. L. W. Jones, 3003 Walnut St., Chicago.

OMAHA, NEB., DEC. 11

Morning Rally for Praise, Prayer and Testimony at 10 o'clock. Discourse for the interested at 7 o'clock in the evening. All services in the Omaha Auditorium, corner 15th and Howard Sts.

DES MOINES, IA., DEC. 12

Meeting for the interested at 3 p.m. Public meeting in the Auditorium at 8 p.m.; subject, "Abraham's Two Seeds."

HARTFORD, CONN., DEC. 18

Morning Rally at 10:30 o'clock, and discourse for the interested at 7:30 p.m. in Mascot Hall, 234 Pearl St. Discourse for the public at 3 p.m., in Parsons Theatre.

CHATTANOOGA, TENN, DEC. 25

Morning Rally, 10:30 o'clock, at Knights of Pythias Hall, Walnut St. Discourse for the public at 3 p.m., in the Bijou Theatre, 6th and Walnut Sts. Topic, "Hereafter."

MOBILE, ALA., DEC. 26

Morning Rally at 10 o'clock, in the Central Trades Council Hall, St. Michael St. Discourse for the public at 7:30 p.m., in the Battle House Auditorium. Topic, "Hereafter."

BROOKLYN, N.Y., JAN. 1

ST. PETERSBURG, FLA., JAN. 8

PHILADELPHIA, PA., JAN. 15


ITEMS AGAIN IN STOCK AND NEW ONES
Spiritism, Hell and Tabernacle Booklets in Swedish, 10c. each, 60c. per doz.
Volume 4, Swedish, 35c.
Spiritism and Tabernacle Booklets in Norwegian, 10c. each, 60c. per doz.
Volume 4, in Norwegian, 35c.
Heavenly Manna in German, cloth-bound, 50c.
Italian, "Our Lord's Great Prophecy," Matt. 24, 10c. each.
Syrian, "What Say the Scriptures About Hell," 10c.
Syrian, "Calamities! Why Permitted?" tract pamphlet.
Greek, DAWN-STUDIES, Vols. 3 and 5, 35c. each.
Greek, "Hell" and "Spiritism," 10c. each, 60c. per doz.
Greek, "The Great Pyramid" (Chap. 10, Vol. 3), 10c. each.
Greek, "Our Lord's Great Prophecy," Matt. 24, 10c. each.
Greek, "Sabbath, Baptism and Passover" (Chaps. 8, 9, 11, Vol. 6). Prices, 10c. each, 60c. per doz.

THE WONDERFUL STORY OF GOD'S LOVE

A beautiful little booklet, appropriately illustrated and suggested for a Christmas token. Price, 10c, $1 per doz.

MARKED NEW TESTAMENTS

We still have a goodly supply of the Marked New Testaments. The markings are in red ink, making prominent, verses which are specially forceful as respects the various features of the Divine Plan for our salvation. The Ransom, Justification, Sanctification, the Second Coming of our Lord and the Resurrection are made quite prominent in these markings. Price prepaid, two for 20c., or $1 per doz. by express not prepaid. The publication, markings, etc., are not ours.

[FOR OTHER ITEMS SEE PAGE 383.] page 383

ITEMS AGAIN IN STOCK AND NEW ONES

[CONTINUED FROM PAGE 370.]

SWEET BRIAR ROSE BOOKLET

These attractive little booklets are especially appropriate for enclosure with your correspondence. They contain a beautiful commendation of "The Divine Plan of the Ages." To facilitate their wide circulation we offer them at an extremely low price, $1 (4s. 2d.) per hundred, postpaid.

VOLUNTEER MATTER IN OTHER LANGUAGES

In German, a large assortment of tracts, old TOWERS and PEOPLES PULPIT.

In Hollandish, we have a large supply of the "Do You Know?" tract for use among your Dutch neighbors and friends.

In Swedish, French, Italian and Greek, we have an ample supply for Volunteer purposes.

In Polish and Hungarian, PEOPLES PULPIT in quantities for distribution.

Order as many of the above as you can judiciously use; they are free for prompt distribution to all who desire thus to engage in the dissemination of the Gospel message.

FIRST VOLUMES IN LEATHER AS XMAS PRESENTS

We call attention to the desirability of the first volume of the SCRIPTURE-STUDIES in leather binding for use as an inexpensive and at the same time missionary gift for the holiday season. We have some specially desirable for this purpose since the covers are not stamped with the volume number. Price 60c. postpaid. Also the leather STUDIES in sets.

CROSS AND CROWN PINS

No. 1. Cross and Crown design in ten-carat gold, five-eighths inch in diameter. The crown is burnished. The surrounding wreath is rustic in design--brilliant gold. The cross is of dark red enamel, with only the outlines showing gold. The pin has a patent fastening. Price, $1.15.

No. 2. This is exactly the same as No. 1, except that instead of the pin it has a screw-clamp at the back, making it more desirable for men's wear. Price, $1.15.

No. 3. Exactly the same as No. 2, except that it is three-eighths inch in diameter. Price, $1.

No. 4. Exactly the same as No. 1, except that it is three-eighths inch in diameter. Price, $1.

No. 5. Like No. 1, except that it is of silver instead of gold and wreath is washed in green. Price, 35c.

These prices all include postage and are very much less than jewelers would charge, as we have them manufactured in large quantities for your convenience.

POST-CARDS

Just received an excellent assortment of Scripture post-cards of our own selection, both Birthday and for general use. Price, 20c. per doz., $1.50 per 100 assorted, postpaid (40 birthday and 60 general).

QUESTIONS ON "TABERNACLE SHADOWS"

We have these printed in cheap form and will supply them free to those who have "Tabernacle Shadows" and who will request them.

1910--MOTTO CARDS--1910

Very beautiful, very cheap; will close them out five for 20c., postage prepaid. See description Nov. 15, 1909, TOWER.



BROOKLYN BETHEL HYMNS FOR JANUARY

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 January follow:

(1) 62; (2) 133; (3) 135; (4) 191; (5) 109; (6) 260; (7) 267; (8) 67; (9) 95; (10) 130; (11) 264; (12) 288; (13) 222; (14) 245; (15) 33; (16) 93; (17) 152; (18) 145; (19) 176; (20) 284; (21) 4; (22) 238; (23) 87; (24) Vow; (25) 246; (26) 127; (27) 325; (28) 7; (29) 94; (30) 107; (31) 327.



[R4718 : page 371]

VIEWS FROM THE WATCH TOWER

LABOR AND ANTI-MILITARISM

FROM THE DISTRICT LEDGER, B.C., CAN.

THE growing sentiment of anti-militarism is now noticeable in almost every country in Europe. The trials and troubles of the British recruiting sergeants have been described at length by these "harpies" of the army, who, with multi-colored ribbons, flying from their headgear, and a braggadocio swagger, lure unsophisticated yokels to accept the "Queen's shilling."

That it is by appeals to their vanity and not to any intelligent appreciation of the merits of the case is amply demonstrated by the study of the birthplaces of those who make up the personnel of many Scottish regiments when the preponderance of those entitled to wear the kilts will be found to be natives of countries outside of Scotland. Today the great plaint of those interested in the upkeep of Scottish traditions is that although the regiments who don the picturesque garb of various clans are quite numerous, there are not more than two who have not a large admixture of others than sons of Caledonia. All the dialects found between Giants Causeway and the Cove of Cork can be found in one regiment, and the Forty-second, better known as the Black Watch, is a Babel.

All of these facts are in themselves straws showing the decadence of "local" patriotism, and indicative of the waning devotion of those martial pursuits that in the past have formed so thrilling a theme of song and story. That it is the costume rather than the much-vaunted love of country that attracts was unanimously the verdict of the recruiting sergeants in England, tacitly given, of course, when they declaimed so loudly against khaki replacing the brilliant red coat because of its deterrent effect upon prospective animated packages of food for powder.

The practical suppression by the newspapers of all news regarding the opposition in different countries to military service is a recognition of its development and a realization that if the reports of outbreaks from time to time be allowed free circulation the effect will necessarily be antagonistic to the exploiting class.

The riots in various parts of Spain at the different ports from which reinforcements were being shipped to Melilla for the Moroccan campaign were protests on the part of those who, awakening from the hypnotism of past generations, realize that war is prosecuted only for the gratification of those desiring profit therefrom, and all the talk about the "defense of honor," upholding the flag, freedom's cause, are so many catchpenny phrases that have outlived their usefulness.

The increase of Socialistic philosophy in Germany, with its concomitant anti-militarism, goes on apace despite the outbursts of censure from the Kaiser stigmatizing these subjects as "vaterlandlos," etc. It is very likely that an impasse may be reached in the kingdom of Prussia in 1912.

There are reports current that the army will be mobilized in that year, which means temporary disfranchisement, whereby a diminution of the Socialist vote may be affected and candidates more favorable to imperialistic policies elected.

There is this "fly in the ointment"--the fear is felt, and more or less openly voiced, that, inasmuch as the supporters of Bebel, Singer, Auer, et al., know the motive for the mobilization is because those deprived of the privilege of voting are opposed to the present regime, a coup d'etat would very probably be, not only attempted, but carried to a successful issue.

It is not very generally known by the world at large who do not read Labor's papers that when Sweden and Norway dissolved partnership there was a strong element among the jingoistically inclined for a resort to a trial by combat, and that it was averted as a result of the conferences between the workingmen's unions of the two countries deciding that their members would refrain from so fratricidal a war. Much praise was given to the late King Oscar concerning his tact and diplomacy in that controversy, but he was merely the Deus ex machina of the commonsense workingmen of the two countries interested.

In Canada all the available machinery of press and pulpit has been called into requisition for the purpose of engendering the war fever; but this propaganda, though most extensive, has not met with much favor, and as a consequence Canadians have been called "ingrates" to the Mother Land.

Why should this country burden herself with the expenses incident to floating junk piles in the shape of battleships, cruisers, torpedo-boat destroyers? Junkpile may be considered a wrong term to use for these Leviathans of the sea, but let the inquisitive look into the cost, life and final resting-places of these monuments to man's stupidity! [R4718 : page 372]

THE WORM AT THE SOCIAL CORE

The Rev. Dr. Charles Townsend, of Orange, was one of the speakers at the Park Presbyterian Church Men's Club banquet recently and told this story of one of the troubles of the original ancestor:

"Adam had eaten the elaborate repast furnished by his helpmeet with every indication that he relished every morsel. He complimented her upon the dainty manner in which the blue-points were served, the flavor of the puree of pea, the seasoning of the fish and entree, and finally reached a delicious salad. Adam paused, and with a worried look on his face, he demanded of Eve where she found the ingredients. She enumerated all except the lettuce. 'Where did you get those leaves?' he demanded. 'Why, they were lying on a bush in the back yard,' she replied, sweetly. 'Well, they were my best Sunday trousers,' sobbed Adam, adding, 'Ah, woe is man,' which was corrupted into 'Woman,' the term by which we know Eve's daughters."--Newark Star.

The above is a fair sample of clerical wit. It is also valuable as a finger-post pointing the way, showing how the Bible account of creation has been abandoned by Presbyterian orthodoxy and has become ridiculous, silly and absurd even to those who profess to believe the Bible is an "inspired book."--The Philistine.


***

Is it any wonder that the rising generation thinks lightly of the holy Scriptures when all the modern ministers and brightest college professors make light of its statements? Yet these men think that they are but doing their duty to benighted people who have not enjoyed their opportunities of examining the Bible along the lines of Higher Criticism. They do not wish to be sacrilegious. They have themselves lost all faith in the Bible and cannot always keep up an outward pretense of respect for it.

The effect upon Christendom is growing terrible. The God of the Bible is ignored, if not dethroned, from the [R4719 : page 372] minds of humanity. Instead, mammon is worshiped-- riches, money. The result is summed up by The Christian and Evangelist, from which we extract the following:

LOSING THE SENSE OF SIN

"We are finding that there are crowds at all the Legislatures, State and National, buying legislation all the time. And the horror of all this is that many of these men have not moral sense enough to realize that they are both dishonest and dishonorable! They are surprised that such a turmoil is aroused over the mere giving and receiving of bribes. Now, these men are our so-called respectable men. They are the men who wear high hats and frock coats, and go to church and have boxes at the opera or symphony concert. Have they lost all sense of honor and honesty? Has their moral nature become atrophied by the handling of bribes as are the hands of certain men paralyzed who work in certain chemicals? And when we turn to our own neighborhood, we find contractors cheating the builders by poor material, and laborers cheating the contractors by slovenly, deceitful work. The city employes are cheating the city in every way--by short hours, exorbitant and unearned salaries, illicit favors shown by one to another, bills entered for things never bought.

"When we turn to business we find graft being practised everywhere: merchants paying for markets, employes being bribed to get trade of their employers, newspapers being controlled by advertisers. Any employer of numbers of young men will tell how rare the sense of honor and honesty is among them; how they will shirk work, and feel no constraint to render full and interested service. Young men steal stamps and even money to pay betting debts. Even college boys cheat in entrance examinations.

"Now, if this goes on much longer, where can we issue except in moral chaos? We need a new sense of honor; we need a new generation of men with such a sense of honor that they will despise and turn from anything that deprives them of pure hands and clean hearts, who will hate a lie in any form."


THE NEW AND WONDERFUL TORPEDOES

As dreadnaughts increase in number and size and power, invention prepares fresh agencies for their destruction. These sometimes are from unexpected quarters. The world is evidently getting ready for a most sanguinary conflict. When it is ended, in a most dreadful desolation, the world will be sick of war and will be ready to learn Messiah's more excellent way. God will make the wrath of man to praise him and the remainder he will restrain. In permitting this dreadful condition of warfare to culminate the Lord will be giving humanity a needed lesson and, in the language of the Prophet, he will thus command them, "Be still, and know that I am God."

The latest invention of torpedoes is by a truck gardener of Missouri, named Ikerman. His torpedoes have been tested on the battleship Texas. One naval officer is quoted as saying that with twelve men and enough of Ikerman's torpedoes he could withstand the attack of the combined navies of the world.


FIFTY-SEVEN METHODIST PREACHERS RESIGN

The September number of the Upper Iowa Methodist Conference this year faced the fact that fifty-seven "charges" in the Conference have been vacated. Newspapers say:--"Fifty-seven men, the greater number of them young and in the prime of life, will quit the ministry at this time to engage in secular lines of work. Many of these men are only a few years out of the university and seminary. The general complaint is that the salary paid is not sufficient."


***

Such a condition of things should not cause astonishment. Nearly all of the ministers that have been graduated from all colleges and seminaries within the last fifteen years left the Alma Mater Higher Critics--unbelievers in the Bible--and many of them skeptical as respects a personal God. This is the general teaching of all the colleges and seminaries, male and female--not openly and avowedly sometimes, but really and truly, nevertheless. If there are exceptions, they are rare.

What incentive is there for the preaching of a message, which the preacher does not believe, from a text which he considers uninspired and believes he could improve upon himself? The motives must be either pride, money, approbativeness or ease. The world is holding out greater inducements to-day along all these lines, for clericalism is growing in disesteem and it is becoming more and more difficult to squeeze money out of unconsecrated pockets.

How much ministers and people both need the true Gospel, which shows the harmony of Divine Justice, Wisdom, Love and Power, and mankind the Divine inspiration of the Bible, showing its complete harmony with itself and with the true principles of godliness!


CHURCH FEDERATION ACCOMPLISHED

This is the view of Dr. Lyman Abbott as set forth in a recent issue of the Outlook:--

"These instances of united action indicate only a primitive [R4719 : page 373] form of Federal Union. Nothing more could be expected within nineteen months. But, primitive though it is, it is real. The American States, when they were first federated, were as truly a nation as they are to-day. They were a weak nation, an immature nation, but a nation, nevertheless. To-day the Federal Council demonstrates that not only Church Union is practicable, quite wise, but also that it has been achieved."


"TIMES OF RESTITUTION"

A cablegram from Sheffield, England, announces that Drs. Hutchinson and Russell, who have been experimenting in soil fertility, made a report to the British Association, proclaiming the discovery of a micro-organism which demonstrates bacteria essential to the fertility of the soil. One speaker declared this the most important agricultural discovery in fifty years.


"LOVERS OF PLEASURE MORE"

It cannot be proved that the Rev. C. J. Tuthill, Congregationalist of Massachusetts, is a prophet, but here is his idea of heaven as he revealed it from the pulpit recently:--

"Heaven is only an evolution of this world. A Christian may love a baseball game and, loving it, remain a Christian. Why, then, is it not safe to prophesy that even the game of baseball will have its place in some spiritual form in heaven? Imagine an everlasting rivalry for the pennant! Think of the new eternal question, 'What's the score?'"


UNION OF THE CHURCHES

A veritable bombshell was thrown at the annual conference of the Western Reform Union, opened at Sheffield, England. The newly elected president, J. H. Freeborough, speaking on the hope for the future unity of the Christian Church, said he firmly believed the great agency for the unification of Christendom was the Roman Catholic Church. No other Church, he said, had the outlook, machinery, tradition or wealth and ability to bring together all the forces of Christendom.

It was a strange thing to say in a Protestant union, he continued, but the secret lay there, and if they could move that great power to the hearts and needs of humanity the day of Christ's coming would be in our time.-- North Eastern Gazette.


GERMANY AS WAR INSTRUCTOR OF NON-CHRISTIAN NATIONS

There is a strong agitation in military circles of Germany against that country acting any longer as war instructor of other nations. It is a well-known fact that the Turkish, the Japanese, and also the Chinese army, which is long past the first stages of modern development, has been organized and developed by German officers. After the war with Russia the Japanese gladly admitted that their magnificent victory over the much more powerful and resourceful enemy was due to the German schooling and strategy. Since the war in Manchuria many more Japanese officers have entered the German army for the purpose of study than ever before, and also Chinese are coming in ever greater numbers. Against this, even military authorities, irreproachable for either pessimism or hatred of foreigners, are now objecting. It is asserted that the strategical schooling of the half-barbarians of the far and near east by Germany must be brought to an end if the "yellow peril" is not to become a fearful reality. Sooner or later this willingness of instruction on the part of the Germans will avenge itself on that country, and it is even now being made merchandise of by England and the other powers as a reason for suspicion and attack upon Germany.


CHURCH FEDERATION REALIZED HOW MUCH MORE SHOULD WE EXPECT?

The Federation of Churches and Religious Organizations of Greater Boston became a reality at a meeting at Ford Hall not long since. Twenty-eight churches and organizations were represented at the meeting, which was presided over by the Rev. George L. Paine.

The general object of the federation is to inform, associate and assist the churches and religious and civic organizations of Greater Boston for intelligent, aggressive co-operative work in behalf of the spiritual, educational, social economy and physical interests of its individual family and community life.--Boston Post.


BAPTIST D.D.'S DISAGREE

We clip the following from the daily press. Comment is unnecessary:--

"A declaration by the Rev. Dr. Charles E. McClellan, pastor of the Fairhill Baptist Church, that 'Protestantism in the United States is fast decaying and will soon be a thing of the past,' aroused a storm of protest at the fifty-third session of the North Philadelphia Baptist Association, [R4720 : page 373] in the Fiftieth Baptist Church, at Seventh street and Susquehanna avenue.

"Other ministers were on their feet in an instant, declaring that Doctor McClellan must be mistaken. Instead of dying out, they said, Protestantism is now at its zenith, with unbounded opportunities for advancement on all sides.

"Doctor McClellan spoke on what he called the decline of Protestantism while making his report as chairman of the missionary committee. 'The spirit of Protestantism is dying in the United States, and it will soon be a thing of the past,' he said. 'Philadelphia, both denominationally and religiously, is going to perdition at a rapid rate.

"'Recently I attended the services in one of our churches, at which I had been invited to speak. I found in attendance nineteen adults and one child. The same condition exists all over the city. We have large, magnificent churches, but small congregations, showing that it is easy to get money, but hard to get men.

"'In some of our churches we find $5,000 expended annually for music, as against $5 for missionary work. A new spirit is the need of the hour. I have tried to be an optimist, but I cannot.'"


FERTILE LANDS OF THE GLOBE

"It has been estimated that the fertile lands of the globe amount to 28,000,000 square miles, the steppes to 14,000,000 and the deserts to 1,000,000. Fixing 207 persons to the square mile for fertile lands, 10 for steppes and one for deserts, as the great population that the earth could properly nourish, the conclusion has been arrived at that, when the number of inhabitants reaches about 6,000,000,000, our planet will be peopled to its full capacity. At present it contains a little more than one-quarter of that number, says Harper's Weekly. If the rate of increase shown by recent censuses should be uniformly maintained, it is thought that the globe would be fully peopled about the year 2072."--Exchange.

The writers of the above cannot be accused of having any sympathy with THE WATCH TOWER presentations of the Divine purposes respecting our earth. Notwithstanding the fact that such statements are published and republished [R4720 : page 374] in the newspapers of the world, public thought is very slightly influenced by such statistics. Professors in colleges and seminaries prate about the age of the earth and humanity inhabiting it and about millions of years to come and the wonderful things that Evolutionists will accomplish. They totally ignore facts--statistics like the above. Why is this? Evidently the human mind is peculiarly constituted!

We remind our readers again that we recently published reports from physicians of Great Britain and America which declare that the world is rapidly becoming insane and that, at the present rate of progress, the whole world would be insane in two hundred and sixty-eight years. We published not long ago statistics showing that at the present rate of increase in the use of coal the world's supply would be exhausted in less than two hundred years. Reports from the lumber interests in the world show that timber must soon be cultivated to supply the present population of earth, not taking into consideration a future great increase. Now we have, as above, statistics showing that in one hundred and ten years all the tillable earth of the whole world will be under cultivation and its regular produce will be necessary for the maintenance of the human family without any off-years. What would the world do for food in two hundred years from now?

THE ONLY LOGICAL ANSWER TO THE QUERIES

The Bible alone gives the answer to the problem of human life prolonged upon this earth and the Bible answers only through its proper interpretation. It assures us that now, soon, before these dire calamities would be due, the whole matter will be solved satisfactorily, happily, blessedly, in the establishment of God's Kingdom-- Messiah's Kingdom--by the rolling back of the curse-- by the Divine blessing instead, making the fields fruitful and lifting mankind from dust and ashes and death to nobler heights, mental, moral and physical--up to perfection and everlasting life. The earth has an abundance of room, as we have already shown, for all of Adam's race that have ever lived. All that it will need will be more fertility and, if necessary, more continents can be raised from ocean depths. The blessing of the Lord shall fill the whole earth. In Messiah's day the righteous shall flourish and the evildoer shall be cut off in the Second Death.


MORGAN TO MANAGE CHURCH UNITY MOVEMENT

The announcement of members of The World's Christian Unity Commission was the most important feature of the closing session of the House of Deputies at the Episcopal convention.

J. Pierpont Morgan is to be financial manager of the commission, which has for its purpose the bringing together of all Christian denominations of the world.

The appointment of this commission is the most far-reaching action of the forty-third triennial convention.

Morgan, it was announced, is treasurer of the commission; Bishop C. P. Anderson, of Chicago, president, and Robert H. Gardinier, of Gardinier, Me., secretary.

Bishop C. D. Williams, of Michigan, at the mass meeting on social responsibility, said:--

"It is high time the Church saw to it that the Jericho road is cleared of thieves and robbers. We cannot preach chastity without considering the tenement-house problem, or temperance without realizing that poverty leads to drunkenness, as well as drunkenness to poverty."


***

Undoubtedly many dear people have a zeal for God and for Church Federation--not, however, according to the wisdom from above, as we see it. Nevertheless, what they are attempting will succeed, and, according to the Scriptures, will be the beginning of the end of "Churchianity."

To us its success is an encouragement as demonstrating the fulfilment of prophecy. To the unionists it is a hollow self-deception to assume that any union in unbelief and ignoring of the Bible and of conscience can work real good.


YELLOW AND WHITE MEN AND MONEY

In an exceedingly interesting address delivered in New York a short time ago Moreton Frewen, the English economist and author, pointed out some features of the world's currency problems which have been overlooked for the most part by the man in the street. The subject of his paper was "The Serious Depreciation of Gold."

The speaker took up the subject of the relation of Asia to the situation. "The most serious aspect of the depreciation of gold," he said, "or, to word it more simply, of the great rise of gold prices, is that it is stimulating the industrial development of Asia with eight hundred millions of people, and involves a competition which, though little noticed thus far, is a menace to our Western civilizations. The great abundance of the new gold inflates our currencies, but there is no equivalent inflation of the silver currencies of the Far East. The result is a great stimulus to all that Asia exports to us and if the rise of gold prices continues during the next quarter of a century, as I believe it will, we shall hand over the control of many great industries, such as steel and coal, cotton, leather and jute, to an awakening China.

"Within the past few months a steel rolling mill has commenced to roll rails of the highest quality at Hankow. The wages per hand paid in the mill are one-fifteenth of the wage at Pittsburg and the efficiency of this skilled, patient Chinese labor is, I understand, estimated by Mr. Watson, an inspector of the United States Steel Corporation, at 90 per cent. of the highly paid skilled white workers at Pittsburg. The wage of coal miners in China and of ordinary unskilled coolie labor there is much lower still; not more than six to eight cents per day gold.

"In the past thirty years, because of falling silver exchanges, the entire character of England's trade with Asia has changed. Instead of an improving market for our exports of manufactured goods, cheap silver is making of Asia one vast factory. When I think of the creations I have myself seen--the cotton mills of Bombay, the jute mills of Calcutta, the boot factories of Cawnpore, and now this terribly ominous competition of Hankow, Shanghai, Hongkong--I find myself wondering what white industries menaced by this murderous Mongolian competition will survive.

"I suppose that there is no man living today who brings a wider mental horizon to these economic problems than your distinguished countryman, Mr. James J. Hill. A friend has given me an important letter written to him a few weeks since by Mr. Hill, with a portion of which I may properly conclude my remarks:--

"'It appears certain that as long as the workers of the Orient are content to accept silver at par for their low wage, while merchants and manufacturers can sell their products abroad for gold and turn it into silver at current rates of exchange, not only must our exports to the Orient tend to decrease rather than increase, but it will presently become a question whether the markets of the rest of the world can be saved from a competition stimulated by exchange [R4720 : page 375] conditions that we are powerless to control.'

"The crises of 1893 and 1907 will not be found where you are looking for them; they were not either in your banking or in your currency systems. The trouble is in your foreign exchanges. In that direction you must find the remedy. We must discover a way to obtain much higher rates of exchange with Asia; that is the road to your safety and to ours."--Bulletin of the American Institute of Banking.


ELECTRICAL ENERGY DISCOVERED

A scientific gentleman in England startles the world with the declaration that he has discovered a certain electric ray that can be focused like light and be used to paralyze armies as easily and as quickly as though lightning [R4721 : page 375] had desolated their ranks. This new weapon of destruction, it is said, has been tendered to the British War Department. It is called an "attribute of high-frequency electric current," which can be separated and, by mechanical contrivance, be deflected and aimed in much the same way as a stream of water from a hose pipe. The Scientist says:--

"The most striking experiment of all had a horse for its subject. By a mechanical device, which is, of course, a secret invention, it was brought to bear upon the horse at a range of four miles. The results could not have been more rapid or more destructive had the range been four yards. The brute staggered as though dazed by a blow from some unseen hand, then fell stone dead. The same thing would have happened had the range been doubled or trebled, and the fate of a horse might have been the fate of an army corps."


***

Surely the increase of knowledge of our day can be safely entrusted only to perfect beings controlled by the Law of Love, or controlled by a higher power, until their uplifting shall have been effected--or their destruction in the Second Death, exactly as the Bible shows.



[R4721 : page 375]

THE RECENT LONDON MEETINGS

IN harmony with previous appointments the Editor of THE WATCH TOWER spent three weeks in London, visiting Manchester and Glasgow before returning. We left New York Wednesday morning, October 12th. A representative of the American Press Association and Brother P. E. Thomson, our stenographer, comprised the party. On the pier, waving us goodbye, were nearly a hundred New York Bible Students. Their words of good cheer and loving manifestation of interest in our welfare cheered us on our journey. Later, in our stateroom, we found reminders of them in certain comforts--fruits, nuts, sweets, flowers. The fragrance of the love behind all these made them doubly precious.

We had an uneventful journey, which afforded opportunity for our literary work. We arrived at London on the evening of October 17th. On the platform we were surprised and cheered by meeting about fifty friends from London and vicinity, waiting for us, extending the glad hand and a cheering welcome. We thanked God and took courage.

ROYAL ALBERT HALL

On this occasion we devoted nearly all of our attention to London, the greatest city in the world. Three Sunday evenings in succession we occupied that superb auditorium, The Royal Albert Hall. The attendance was estimated to vary from 4,600 the first night, to 6,000 the second night, and 7,600 the last night. Our themes were:--

(1) "God's Message to the Jews."--Isa. 40:1,2.
(2) "God's Message to Christendom."--Isa. 40:3-7.
(3) "The Great White Throne."--Rev. 20:11.

On all three occasions the interest manifested by the audience was splendid. We could not have asked for better. We feel much encouraged with the evidences of a class possessing deep spirituality in Great Britain, and with an apparently increasing interest in Present Truth. We will not here give any details of the discourses, as we understand that they were reported very widely all over America and in some of the English papers. We will assume that those interested in reading them not only secured them for themselves, but sent encouraging words to the editors and purchased extra copies for their friends.

Between these more public services at the great hall we had six district meetings in London in fine, large town halls, with which English cities are so much better supplied than our own. At East Ham Town Hall, at Acton Baths Hall, Woolwich Town Hall and at Bermondsey Town Hall the theme was the same--"Times of Restitution of all things which God hath spoken." At Alexandra Palace our topic was, "Where are the Dead?" At Shoreditch Town Hall, in the Jewish district, our topic was, "Zionism in Prophecy." We feel sure that our readers can well imagine our treatment of these themes, hence we will not dilate upon them here. The pleasurable matter we have to relate in connection with the meetings is that in all of them we had splendid attention and audiences which ranged from six hundred to twelve hundred. We were surprised to have so good audiences and so intelligent a hearing on mid-week evenings.

We had one special meeting with the London Church. We enjoyed that meeting very much, and hope that the friends there enjoyed it also. We would have liked to have several more meetings of the fellowship order with them, but our time and theirs was fully occupied. We were hunting again for more satisfactory office accommodations, etc., while many of the dear friends were extremely busy in doing their part to make successful the nine public meetings. That they worked very hard will be known when we state that over six hundred thousand copies of PEOPLES PULPIT, advertising these meetings, were circulated. If the Lord smiles upon our projects we will have more meetings in London and more Pilgrim service throughout Great Britain shortly. Surely there is a large wheat field there to be harvested--as well as here.

FOUR MANCHESTER MEETINGS

The Class of Bible Students at Manchester numbers about 400, and they are very zealous. They would have preferred, of course, Sunday meetings with large halls, but were nevertheless pleased with the best we had for them, under all the circumstances, namely, addresses to the Household of Faith on the afternoons of Friday and Saturday, October 4th and 5th. The attendance was good, although, of course, many of the dear friends, obliged to attend to their secular pursuits, were unable to be present. We endeavored to speak some words of cheer and comfort which we hoped, under the Lord's Providence, might build them up still further in the most holy faith.

On Friday evening we had a public service in the new Auditorium of the Y.M.C.A. About 1,000 were present, [R4721 : page 376] mostly middle-aged people, intelligent, thoughtful. They gave close attention to our discourse on "The Great White Throne of Judgment."

On Saturday evening we had a hall in the Jewish neighborhood, and spoke specially to the Jews. Our topic was, "Zionism in Prophecy." The hall was not a large one and many desirous of hearing were unable to gain admission. Seven hundred had seats, and about 500 more were tightly packed in all the aisles and clear out to the street. We never addressed a more representative Jewish audience; they were from all classes and conditions of life. All but a very few heard us with many manifestations of interest, especially after we had reached the center of our theme and they perceived that we were not trying to get them into some Christian sect, but drawing their attention as Jews to the promises of God through their own prophets. Many of their faces lighted up with hope, and some wept.

At the conclusion, in harmony with a request, we gave opportunity for questions. These developed the fact that the three questioners were opponents, unbelievers in the Bible and its promises--young infidels. The audience noticed this and spoke out against them. When we answered that a man who did not believe the Bible, and who did not trust in the promises made to Abraham, was not really a Jew, and had no proper right to ask a question at a meeting called for the discussion of "Zionism in Prophecy," the audience drowned our opponents with their applause.

We gave Glasgow, Scotland, also two days of two meetings each. The regular meetings of Bible Students at Glasgow, we understand, number about 500 every Sunday. They seemed to be in good spiritual health. The programme at Glasgow was practically a repetition of the one at Manchester.

The second of the meetings for the interested was a Question Meeting. The questions were extremely good ones and indicated thoughtfulness and deep penetration in the knowledge of the Truth.

The meeting for the public in Glasgow was well attended. The audience was estimated at 3,200. The Glasgow meeting for the Jews was our last in Great Britain, the attendance being about 1,400. They listened with keen interest, and on our conclusion gave us very warm applause.

OUR RETURN JOURNEY

After the meeting we took a train for Southampton and there got good steamer connection for New York. About seventy of the Glasgow friends sang and waved us goodbye from the platform.

We had a stop-over in London of an hour between trains. Quite a number of the London Bible Students were on the platform and bade us goodbye.

Our homeward journey was quite an uneventful, pleasant one. We had excellent opportunity for literary work, and trust that at least two grains of wheat were found on the boat.

At the landing pier in New York City we were met by three of the brethren as a committee for the whole family. Soon we were at Bethel and had the pleasure of greeting the family at their noonday meal. On our entering the room all of this dear family of God arose and sang a verse:--

"Blest be the tie that binds
Our hearts in Christian love;
The fellowship of kindred minds
Is like to that above."

We gave thanks to the Lord, and then briefly recited to the family our experiences abroad, as herein presented to the family at large.



[R4722 : page 376]

JACOB AND ESAU IN A NEW LIGHT

A TRAVELER and lecturer acquainted with the habits and customs of the Arabs throws a fresh light upon the transaction between Jacob and Esau respecting the birthday and the deception practised upon Isaac. It is claimed, and apparently on good grounds, that the customs of the Arab in Mesopotamia to-day are in all respects what they were thirty-five hundred years ago, when Abraham dwelt there, and was a great sheik, with flocks and herds and servants. Hence the ideals and customs prevailing amongst them furnish a good criterion as respects those in vogue in the days of Isaac, Jacob and Esau.

It is declared that to this day the first-born son of the family is the heir of the estate, with full authority next to his father. It is the custom amongst the Arabs that the elder son shall recognize by fast the birth date of a celebrated ancestor, from whom he has received patrimony. On the other hand, other members of the family celebrate such a day as a festival. For the elder son to partake of the feast on such an occasion would mean the renouncement of his birthright to the next one in succession.

Applying this to Esau and Jacob: Presumably the occasion was a celebration of the birthday of their grandfather Abraham, from whom proceeded the great blessing of God, which, as the elder son of the family, Esau had inherited. It was a day, therefore, in which it was incumbent to fast, but a holiday and special lentil festival to Jacob. As the elder son it would not have been necessary for Esau to purchase victuals from his brother, for, as the head of the home next to his father, he could have commanded whatever he desired. But on this occasion, when he asked Jacob for the savoury food, the latter was astonished and practically said: "Do you mean it, or are you joking? Do you really mean that you wish to abdicate your rights as the first-born by partaking of the stew? If you do mean it, I shall very gladly assume responsibility and I will do the fasting as the first-born." Esau replied, "Yes, I mean it. Why should I fast? I have no confidence in the old Scripture promises anyway, and have serious doubts if God had any more communication with father Abraham than with others." Still doubting his sincerity, Jacob, after the manner of the people of the East to this day, said, "Swear it and I will believe it." So Esau swore that he voluntarily voided his rights to his brother Jacob, who was glad to go under the conditions because of his faith in the promises made to Abraham.

WHY ISAAC WAS DECEIVED

Our informant further declares that amongst the Arabs it is still considered entirely proper to deceive the aged, for the purpose of saving them from sorrow. For Isaac to learn that his first-born son had so disesteemed his privileges, it was surmised, would cause heartache and sorrow. Hence his wife and Jacob arranged to deceive him. Esau was dishonest in attempting to take the blessing which he had forfeited and that with an oath. He seems to have feared that the blessing of the first-born would carry the bulk of Isaac's estate to Jacob. Apparently [R4722 : page 377] it was the earthly things that he desired and not the spiritual blessing of God through Abraham. So soon as Jacob left all the earthly inheritance in Esau's hands the latter seemed satisfied. And Jacob, too, was satisfied, because he got the portion which he specially desired and prized above everything else.

In full harmony with this the Scriptures denounce Esau as a profane, worldly-minded person, who sold his birthright share in God's special promises for a mess of pottage--for temporal, earthly refreshment. The Scriptures similarly praise Jacob because of his willingness to deny himself earthly comfort for the heavenly promises.



[R4722 : page 377]

THE YOUNG MAN'S ERROR

[WHICH LOST HIM A KINGDOM.]
--I. KINGS 12:6-16.--JANUARY 1.--

"He that walketh with wise men shall be wise; a companion of fools shall be destroyed." (Proverbs 13:20.) "Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed thereto according to thy word."--Psalm 119:9.
THE opening of the New Year with all the possibilities thereof for good or for evil strongly resembles the opening of life's maturity to a young man or a young woman. To the thoughtful and experienced there is something very pathetic in the life start of bright boys and girls. Their hopes and anticipations run so high, their ideals are so grand, they have so many air castles. Experience shows that, alas, the great majority of these result disastrously and usually from unwisdom. How often would loving counsels from their seniors assist them and save them from wrecks and calamities! We may well thank God that in his Providence the mistakes of youth, while serious, do not necessarily spell eternal disaster. Once, perhaps, we wrongly so misunderstood the Divine purpose--understood that all who do not become saints will suffer eternally. Thank God for our better vision of the present, which shows us that the saintly ones indeed choose the better part and its exceeding great reward; nevertheless those not favored with the hearing ear and the understanding heart and the call Divine in the present time will share the great privilege of human restitution under Messiah's Kingdom. Thus the mistakes of nine hundred and ninety-nine out of every thousand, in not choosing the better part, may not only bring bitter lessons, sorrows and tears, but eventually bring greater wisdom and lead on to bliss in Eden restored.

KING REHOBOAM'S UNWISDOM

When the great king, Solomon, died he left the kingdom to his son Rehoboam--a kingdom extending from the wilderness on the South to the Euphrates on the North, in all nearly as large as England and Wales. It was God's Kingdom; as we read, "Solomon sat upon the throne of the Kingdom of the Lord." Rehoboam was about twenty-one years of age when he came to the throne at the death of his father, Solomon. He was inexperienced. His mother was a princess from a nearby heathen kingdom and apparently she never renounced her heathen religion. Evidently she was very beautiful and the favorite of Solomon's household. The son probably inherited personal beauty from both of his parents. The riches of the kingdom had been chiefly gathered to its capital, Jerusalem, and King Solomon's annuity is supposed to have been more than ten million dollars. No young man probably ever stepped suddenly into greater opportunities than Rehoboam, and few ever dissipated good fortune more rapidly; but while few have so great opportunities financially and politically to lose, yet each has character possibilities and a kingdom of his own will, valuable beyond all monetary calculations. Let us all learn lessons from the successes and failures of others. Let us all set before us proper ideals that their attainment may be a blessing and not a curse.

THE CRISIS AND THE ERROR

Although the nation of Israel was a monarchy, it had connected with it elements of a democracy. That is to say, each of the tribes, except the Levites, maintained a political organization and a measure of independence. Thus King David reigned for seven years over Judah and Benjamin before he was accepted as king by the other ten tribes. Although the nation was a theocracy in the sense that God was their King, and the earthly monarch merely his representative, it can readily be seen that the religious faith of the nation had much to do with the regulation of the king.

King Solomon, the wise, although reverent toward God, was evidently much less zealous, much less religious than his father David. His heathen wives, the riches of the kingdom and his political intercourse with the surrounding nations made him what might be termed a bright-minded man rather than a religious one. This was reflected upon his son and successor and also upon the people he governed.

Besides this, Solomon's great enterprises, palatial buildings, etc., brought the revenue and glory to his capital city, Jerusalem, and did not evenly distribute it throughout the nation. Indeed, following the custom of other kings, wealth was gathered largely from the enforced labor of his subjects, who were compelled to labor at his capital for the common weal without pay. They were drafted and put under task-masters. In Solomon's day this was borne, though sometimes resentfully, but when his son came to the throne the northern tribes determined that they would not acknowledge him as king unless he gave them what might be termed a bill of rights --a Magna Charta.

They sent to Egypt for one of their leaders, whom Solomon had exiled for his outspoken criticisms. Through him the ten tribes had a general conference of tribe leaders and informed Rehoboam that they were not satisfied with the way they had been treated by King Solomon. They inquired what he would promise them in the way of a reform government. Rehoboam, who had already been recognized king by the tribes of Judah and Benjamin, was at the conference and properly enough asked for three days in which to consider the question. He and all realized that a crisis in the affairs of the kingdom had come. The matter was too weighty to be decided hastily. He called for the secretaries of the kingdom, his father's counsellors, elderly men, to know their advice. Their recommendations were good. They recommended that he be a servant of the people; that instead of accumulating wealth at the capital and being personally great, he should serve the entire nation, looking out for all of its interests and forwarding the same--exactly what the ten tribes desired.

Next, Rehoboam called the young men, his friends and acquaintances, his schoolmates, whom he was disposed [R4723 : page 378] more and more to bring into power with himself. Their advice was that the one way for a monarch to be successful is to intimidate his subjects and rule them with a heavy hand. The young king had not been rightly taught the principles of justice in human affairs. Wise as his father was, he had neglected to prepare his son for a proper decision in the crisis upon him. Pride and inexperience said, Hold to your power. If you yield an inch they will consider you weak and inefficient and will ask for more and more until shortly you will be a king in name only. Pride and ambition are dangerous counsellors.

THE GRIEVOUS DECISION

The king followed the advice of the young men and, in figurative language, said, "You claim that my father made your load heavy, and you ask me to make it light. Instead, I will add to your load; my father chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions--a whip with metal pricks at the ends of the thongs." The unwise decision lost the king the greater part of the kingdom. The ten tribes revolted, and the adjacent kingdom, which had been under Solomon's sovereignty also, deflected, and left the king but a small minority of his empire, although it was the richest, most influential portion. The ten tribes answered, "What interest have we in David and his family? He belongs merely to the tribe of Judah." Thus they separated.

THE POINT OF THIS STUDY

There is a lesson in this study for all, namely, the importance of wisdom in our decisions, especially at the start of life and at various partings of the ways, as we come to them in life's journey. To all there is a lesson worth learning in the matter of pride and ambition, threats and attempted coercions and the unwisdom of such courses, as well as their injustice. Wealth, power, influence, gained through oppression and injustice, are unworthy of noble minds, and this principle can be applied on the smaller scale as well as on the larger. In homes the principle operates between parents and children, between husbands and wives. Alas! too often in the home control is held by force rather than by love and esteem and the appreciation of justice and the general welfare. Such a headship or rulership in the family is an unworthy one and should be remodeled forthwith.

Another lesson is that in every enterprise of life we should seek counsel. In this connection let us remember the words of the Apostle that we seek the wisdom that cometh from above, that is "first pure, then peaceable, easy of entreatment and full of mercy and good fruits." --James 3:17.

This should be the decision of every one of us as respects the New Year, 1911--God first!

"We shape ourselves the joy or fear
Of which the coming life is made,
And fill our future atmosphere
With sunshine or with shade.

"The tissue of the life to be
We weave in colors all our own,
And in the field of destiny
We reap what we have sown."



[R4723 : page 378]

ABILITY AND OPPORTUNITY MISUSED
--I. KINGS 12:25-33.--JANUARY 8.--

"Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image."--Exodus 20:4.
TODAY'S Study brings to our attention a man of large natural ability and of quite unusual opportunity. It shows us his disastrous error, which resulted from his endeavor to be worldly wise and to neglect his God and his religion. It furnishes an illustration which can be applied, not only to every political and every commercial enterprise, but also to the life hopes of each individual.

Jeroboam as a young man attracted the attention of King Solomon, who perceived that he possessed great executive talent and that he was a natural master and director of men. King Solomon put Jeroboam at the head of one of his corps of drafted workmen who were engaged after the manner of that time in building palaces and fortresses for the king--without pay other than very plain food and clothing. These labor armies were obliged to work for a number of months and then were replaced by others similarly conscripted.

Of the tribe of Ephraim, the largest of the ten tribes which separated from the tribes of Judah and Benjamin, naturally Jeroboam may have felt something of the spirit of discontent as he perceived that the wealth of the nation was being principally gathered at Jerusalem--that all of the tribes were being taxed, and that most of the benefit went to the tribe of which the royal family were members. Jeroboam became the leader of a party of discontents, and an incipient rebellion was the result. This was quickly suppressed by King Solomon and thereupon Jeroboam fled to Egypt, from whence he returned at the death of Solomon and became the leader and spokesman of the ten tribes when they demanded of Rehoboam the reform of the government's policy.

JEROBOAM'S FIRST MISTAKE

It should be remarked that one of God's prophets had specially foretold to Jeroboam that he was to be the king of the ten tribes. It was doubtless this that led him to head the insurrection. He should have followed the example of King David, who was anointed king of Israel several years before the death of King Saul. Young David was content to wait God's time for bringing him to the throne. The fact that God had indicated that this would be so did not indicate that the time had come, hence David waited on the Lord and meanwhile learned valuable lessons of self-control and trust in Divine Providence. Not so Jeroboam, who was evidently a very different type of man, no doubt possessed of more confidence in himself than of trust in God; possessed of more impatience to be a king than of loyalty and patriotic zeal to serve God and his people. This first mistake should be noted by all. "Wait ye upon me, saith the Lord!" The man who ignores God is not wise; the man who opposes God is a fool.

JEROBOAM'S SECOND MISTAKE

When the ten tribes revolted against King Rehoboam, Solomon's son, they promptly accepted Jeroboam, one of Solomon's servants, as their king, in harmony with the Prophet's declaration of years before. Finally the boy of humble birth had reached a high station of influence --a grand opportunity for service for his God and his people. Whoever occupies a position of prominence-- political, social, literary--should recognize that thereby he has come under special responsibility and obligations toward all with whom he has to do. Such opportunities, whether in business life, in politics or in literature, should be used humbly, faithfully, as a responsible service. [R4723 : page 379]

But Jeroboam, king of the ten tribes styled Israel, took the course, alas, too commonly taken--the selfish course. He looked not to the Lord to serve him, nor to the people, to serve their best interests. He looked selfishly to his own interests. He reasoned thus: If I would establish my family in the kingdom of these ten tribes, I must separate them effectually from the influence of the kingdom of Judah. And since, in God's Providence, the Temple is in the land of Judah, and all the religious rites and interest of the people center there, I must as unobtrusively as possible turn the attention of the nation I rule away from sympathy with their fellows of the kingdom of Judah, and away from the regulations which God has established there.

Every worldly politician would declare Jeroboam a master spirit as a ruler, as a politician. He was worldly wise. God through the Prophet had assured him, "If thou wilt hearken to all that I will command thee, and wilt walk in my ways, and do right in my sight to keep my statutes and my commandments, as David my servant did, thy kingdom will be prolonged." (I Kings 11:38.) God explained that the reason for giving Jeroboam rulership of the ten tribes was that Solomon's course of dealing with the nations round about was gradually breaking down the true religion and leading the people toward idolatry. Jeroboam should have had all this in mind, and should have applied his heart with special fervor to the banishment of idolatry.

Instead, however, for policy's sake, he led the nation, of which he was king, directly into idolatry. He did not come out plainly and say to them, I wish to separate you and alienate you from God and the religious institutions of your nation by attracting your attention away from Jerusalem, its religion, its worship, its Temple. Under the pretext that it was too far for the people to go to Jerusalem, he erected a golden bull near the northern extremity of his kingdom, and another near the southern line, and the people went from one to the other. Additionally, he established near each of these golden bullocks (wood overlaid with gold) a house of high places. In these buildings lustful practices were carried on in the [R4724 : page 379] name of religion and in the manner of heathen peoples, this form of religion pandering to the fallen appetites and commending itself to the people who were not at heart religious.

Thus a man of great opportunities and of great natural ability for serving his God and his people dishonored the One and led the other astray. The lesson to each of us should be, See that thou do differently. Make not Jeroboam's mistake.

THE THING WAS OF THE LORD

Lest we should suppose that the affairs of Israel's Kingdom, under Divine supervision, were neglected and allowed to go astray, we are particularly informed that "the thing was of the Lord." From this standpoint of faith and from no other the history of Israel should be studied.

God had chosen to give Israel the Law Covenant for the very purpose of developing in them as a nation holiness, faithfulness. Their lessons of the past had been to this end, and now the time had come to do a sifting and a separating work. The kingdom of Judah had been enriched, and to it had been gradually gathered the more religious and the more intellectual of the nation. By the conspiracy of the ten tribes God purposed to humble Judah and to draw that people nearer to himself. To this end the ten tribes of less religious people were separated under Jeroboam.

But this did not work disadvantage to any true Israelites amongst the ten tribes, for we read that the Levites and the most religious of the people removed to the kingdom of Judah. Contrariwise we are safe to assume that the irreligious of Judah who favored idolatry, etc., had full opportunity for removing to the land of the ten tribes. Thus a sifting work was done which was beneficial to those loyal to God and to the kingly family which he had indicated in "his sure mercies of David."



[R4724 : page 379]

NATIONAL REFORM OF OLD
--II CHRONICLES 15:1-15.--JANUARY 15.--

"Be strong, therefore, and let not your hands be weak; for your work shall be rewarded."
THIS Study shows us a young king whose environments in youth had been unfavorable, in that his father was far from being a good man, and his early years were under the influence of a grandmother who was an idol worshipper. In the midst of this unfavorable setting Asa quickly developed a loyalty to God and soundness of judgment beneficial to his kingdom. We have all had experience with characters of this kind. We have occasionally seen children of evil parentage who seemed to see the evil of the parental course, and to be nauseated therewith, and by this led into right paths. It has at times appeared as though Divine Providence occasionally interposed in prenatal influences which made the child very different in bent of mind from either of its parents. St. Paul seems to indicate something of this kind in his own case when he declares that Divine Providence had favored him from his mother's womb. (Galatians 1:15.) Nothing in this, however, interferes with the will of the individual--his free agency.

Asa did much to abolish idolatry in his kingdom, and to sway the minds of the people to reverence and obedience of Almighty God. In consequence, he had peace for ten years, during which time he encouraged his people and spurred himself on to activity in the training of an army, and in the completing of fortified cities on the extremity of his kingdom, for protection against attacks of enemies.

Following the ten years of peace came Zerah, an Ethiopian prince, and an army of a million and three hundred chariots of war, to attack the kingdom of Judah. After the custom of the times they foraged on the country through which they passed, appropriating, devastating, etc.--"taking spoil." This was the very occasion for which Asa had made preparation during his ten years of peace. He went forth with his army to beat the invader. Nevertheless, his faith looked up to God for the victory, realizing that with him was the power to give or to withhold victory. In the battle which followed, Asa and his army were successful; their foes were smitten, discomfitted, scattered, and the spoils went with the victory.

RENEWED CONSECRATION TO GOD

Returning from the victory with hearts grateful to God they were met on the way by a Prophet--Azariah-- who in the name of the Lord counselled the king and his people that they had all done well and faithfully, and that, therefore, God's blessing was with them, and that [R4724 : page 380] the continuance of Divine blessing would depend upon their faithfulness to God and to the requirements of his Law. The hour of victory is a more dangerous one than the hour of distress; the heart is more apt to be proud and self-conscious and to feel its own importance. The Divine warning helped the King and his people to appreciate the situation and to take a firmer stand than ever for righteousness. A second and more thorough reformation was thus inaugurated--no idolatry was thenceforth permitted in the kingdom under penalty of death, and the Lord's blessing continued with the kingdom--Judah.

THE GOD OF BATTLE

Benevolent people, interested in peace congresses, etc., sometimes inquire how we should understand the fact that the God of the Old Testament Scriptures was a God of Battle--sometimes commanding war and the utter destruction of many. The answer to this question can be appreciated only when the situation is viewed from the proper standpoint, which is this:

The whole world was lost in sin and was under condemnation to death as unworthy of life, unworthy of Divine favor. Whether, therefore, God permitted them to die by famine, pestilence, or by what we sometimes designate natural death, mattered not--the death sentence must sooner or later be executed against them at any rate --all must go down to the tomb. We thank God, however, that his gracious plan has provided a redemption of Adam and all of his race from the tomb and from death, and a full opportunity eventually, by resurrection, to come to a true knowledge of God and righteousness, and, if obedient thereto, to return ultimately to Divine favor and to more than was lost in Eden--all of this recovery accomplished through Calvary.

The nation of Israel was no exception to this reign of sin and death, but God chose them as a nation to make of them types, shadows, illustrative of his gracious purposes. It was to this intent that he entered into a typical Covenant with them, through a typical Mediator, under a typical Atonement for their sin, effected by typical sacrifices for sins. They became his typical people, and he [R4725 : page 380] their king, whom they pledged themselves loyally to obey.

Thus in a figurative way Israel stood as representatives of God and his righteousness in the midst of an idolatrous world, and, later, when the ten tribes broke away, it left the kingdom a specially representative kingdom of God, to which the loyal-hearted of all the tribes religiously resorted. From this standpoint God's promise to this nation was his Divine blessing in giving them peace and earthly prosperity in proportion as they would be loyal to him, and war, famine, pestilence, insurrection, trouble, in proportion as they would neglect their Covenant with him and fail to render obedience to him as their Monarch, as their God. All of God's dealings with that nation typed greater blessings for the future. We are not to understand that either then, or since, any other nation has occupied this same relationship toward God, nor that he similarly rewards and punishes faithfulness or unfaithfulness with particularity in each nation.

Spiritual Israel, St. Peter tells us, is a "Royal Priesthood, an holy nation, a people for a purpose, that they should show forth the praises of him who has called us out of darkness into his marvelous light." This Spirit-Begotten Israel is not an earthly nation, has no earthly wars with carnal weapons. This Holy Nation has no promise of earthly peace and prosperity, as rewards of obedience to God, but, contrariwise, is assured that in the world she shall have tribulation, hatred, opposition, suffering and that her reward will be spiritual. She will now have the peace of God which passeth all understanding, and by and by, through the "First Resurrection," "an abundant entrance into the everlasting Kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ."

LESSONS WE MAY LEARN

Nearly every page in history may teach lessons to those who are desirous of learning them. The experiences of King Asa may, for instance, give us the lesson that in the years of our youth we should properly put away all idolatry of money, of fame, of honor of men, and should seek to know and to do the will of the Lord from the heart. In the early years of life we should erect the fortresses of character which will serve us as a defence against attacks of the world, the flesh and the Devil in our later years, and when the battle comes, thus prepared, we are still to look to the Lord for victory, realizing the force of the Apostle's words, "When I am weak in myself then I am strong in the Lord."

Nor should a great victory elate us and make us careless and self-sufficient. Warned of the Lord as was Asa, we should make our consecration still more thorough and thus continue to fortify ourselves, that we may be strong in the Lord and in the power of his might.

"It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll;
I am the master of my fate,
I am the captain of my soul."


[R4724 : page 380]

HIDDEN THINGS SHALL BE REVEALED
Not understood, we move along, asunder,
Our paths grow wider as the seasons creep
Along the years; we marvel and we wonder
Why life is life, and then we fall asleep,
Not understood.

Not understanding, we gain false impressions,
And hug them closer as the years go by,
Till virtues often seem to us transgressions;
And thus men rise and fall and live and die
Not understood.

Not understanding, souls with stunted vision
Oft measure giants by their narrow gauge;
The poisoned shafts of falsehood and derision
Are oft impelled 'gainst those who mould the age,
Not understood.

Not understood, the secret springs of action
Which lie beneath the surface and the show
Are disregarded; with self-satisfaction
We judge our neighbors, and they often go,
Not understood.

Not understood, how trifles often change us;
The thoughtless sentence or the fancied slight
Destroys long years of friendship and estrange us,
And on our souls there falls a freezing blight--
Not understood.

Not understood, how many hearts are aching
For lack of sympathy! Ah! day by day
How many cheerless, lonely hearts are breaking,
How many noble spirits pass away
Not understood!

Oh, God! that men would see a little clearer,
Or judge less hardly when they cannot see!
Oh, God! that men would draw a little nearer
To one another! They'd be nearer Thee,
And understood.
THOMAS BRACKEN.



[R4725 : page 381]

SOME INTERESTING LETTERS

GETTING HOTTER IN GERMANY

DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:--

I do not know if you are aware of the fact that the conflict between the political and religious factions here in Germany is getting hotter and hotter. Various conditions, higher taxes and higher prices for the necessities of life, especially food and rents, and for the luxuries of tobacco and beer, have raised quite a commotion among the working classes.

The hosts of Socialism are rapidly increasing here. Since the last elections to the Reichstag, in which they had lost in the number of seats, they have since gained in eight cases, where substitutes for deceased representatives were elected. It seems evident that in the general elections of next year they will elect more representatives to the Reichstag than any other party. Moreover, the liberals of other smaller parties are preparing to co-operate with the Socialists in various measures, and vise versa. The Government is compelled to seek the support of the Catholic party. As a consequence we see how the latter are coming forward boldly with their claim to Divine rights in matters of education, etc. The annual Catholic day recently was an occasion for using "great swelling words," praising the Pope and the Kaiser and practically calling to arms every nominal Christian in the country, not only of the Catholic faith, but of every shade of belief. The war cry is: Down with the liberals, and let us get control of the educational systems, schools, books and newspapers.

The Kaiser on his part has not failed to show color recently. He took occasion to praise his great-grandfather and grandfather for having relied upon their "Divine right" to govern the people, and to say that he, too, would follow in the course which he was destined to go, and that he would take no notice of public opinions.

A storm of protests and mass meetings instantly followed all over the country, protesting against this antique notion of his. In one case a resolution was unanimously adopted, saying that the voters of the country were equally destined, and that since he would ignore the people, they were compelled to ignore the opinions of the Kaiser. Another distinguished speaker in Stuttgart reminded the crowded assembly that many thousand marks had been used as a bribe to secure the crown to King Frederick II. of Prussia. Thus the Divine right of kings was made ridiculous.

Recently the International Socialist Congress convened in Frankfurt on the Main and brought about 40,000 people together, most of these, of course, from the city. Representatives from Sweden, France and England spoke in German and used great plainness of speech. In all countries, they pointed out that the fight was against the Reactionaries, monopolies and against war and for liberty and the rights of the people in general.

The papacy, you may know, has undertaken to fight the modernists. The Berlin Tageblatt brings a very interesting item to the point, showing that these manifestations on the part of the vatican, the Kaiser and the Bavarian prince, who recently prided himself for having been born a Catholic, serve only to hasten the day of liberty from civil and religious potentates!

I see from a dispatch in the press that the vatican proposes to have a year of mourning in 1911, it being the 40th year since the united Italy made Rome its capital. No doubt the papacy will have more reasons than that for mourning.

This is certainly a wonderful day in which we are living. How unsettled everything earthly is! Old things are passing away, and all things are being renewed, or are preparing to be renewed. We hail Messiah's Kingdom with the earnest prayer, "Thy Kingdom come!" Surely, the perplexed nations and the groaning creation of mankind need a righteous rule.

Your brother in our dear Redeemer and King,
O. A. KOETITZ.


GLASGOW CONVENTION

[A BELATED LETTER.]

DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:--

We have just returned from a sweet season of refreshing from the presence of the Lord. The Lord who said, "Wherever two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst," fulfilled his word this time also. Not only were we blessed as by the gracious presence, but we were constrained to shout aloud as we realized that "The Holy One of Israel was in our midst." It was a time of restful joy and the four days during which we were together were all too short for us. As was the case with the Celoron Convention, so here; there was a note of triumph, as if from a gathering sense of an increased knowledge of the Lord and of strength in him. There were no signs of lack of spirituality, nor any sense of fatigue; there was apparently none with loose hands or feeble knees, and surely, had anyone attended who might have been touched with the spirit of fear planted by the enemy, the joys of the Lord, and the manifested graces of the Spirit would have been evidence enough to restore such a one to faith and hope and love.

When we met in the opening meeting the signs of the times were on us. Many loved faces were missing. This Convention has provided for the brethren in this country the first clear showing of the signs of the end of the Harvest. The home Church (Glasgow) has in the past year lost many brethren. Our dear Brother Edgar, who labored so earnestly all the time of his consecration, has gone to be with the Lord. We missed him sorely. Others have, we believe, been joined to the happy throng now with the Lord; some have gone to other parts of the world, and some are no longer with us, having gone out from us. The addresses seemed very acceptable to the brethren, and were evidently of the helpful character, which is to be expected. The testimony meetings were as good or better than ever, and added much to the pleasure of the Convention.

At the baptismal service 61 brothers and sisters symbolized their vow of consecration to the Lord. This was a specially sweet and encouraging time, for of the 61 there were about eight young brethren who have been stirred to consecration through the death of Brother Edgar, amongst them being his two sons and three other members of the family. [R4726 : page 381] Our eyes filled as we watched a mother wipe away her tears before she could properly see to help her daughter out of the water. It is good to see many for whom there has been long waiting coming into the light of the Lord and into the fellowship; and it is wonderful to behold the ease with which they lay hold upon the deep things of the Lord. Of course, the Truth is ever becoming plainer and there are more to help, but it is wonderful all the same. It is the Lord's doings.

When we were about to part a Brother suggested a message be sent to Brother Russell, and all the congregation stood while this message was read--"I thank my God, making mention of thee always in my prayers, hearing of thy love and faith, which thou hast towards the Lord Jesus and towards all saints; that the communication of thy faith may become effectual by the acknowledgment of every good thing which is in you in Christ Jesus. For we have great joy and consolation in thy love, because the bowels of the saints are refreshed by thee, brother."--Philemon 4-7.

Praying the Lord's blessing upon your labors, and that the joy of the Lord may be your strength in the strenuous labors of the Harvest Work,

I am your brother in his grace,
J. HEMERY.--London.


A WORD FROM AUSTRALIA

DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:--

Here in Melbourne the position does not show any change from what has been previously reported. We count about thirty that attend the meetings and several who, through infirmity, cannot attend, but are among the most faithful all the same. I believe that there is good progress among the friends that meet with us; I feel that almost all are truly consecrated. Our Thursday night study on "The New Creation" is a feast; I think it is the best meeting we have....

We have just had an interesting case of a man who, after belonging to the Salvation Army, Seventh Day Adventists, etc., had become agnostic, at the same time being possessed of the spirits. He got Vol. 1 and that made the spirits mad at him; they would not give him rest while he tried to read. But he had got enough of the volume to be sure that it was right and fought hard. He came to us for advice, and thought that we should exorcise the spirits. While he talked with us they shook him up in a terrible way bodily. We told him that we did not have authority to command them to come out, but felt sure that if he was really determined to be the Lord's and to make a consecration of everything to him, that the Lord would deliver him. After prayer several times and much distress on his part, they finally laid him out on the office floor. He gained the victory in appealing to the Lord and was made free; he has never been bothered with the spirits since. He has told us that his boy also would continually waken up at nights screaming and saying that he could see things and that they were after him. But now that the [R4726 : page 382] father is free the boy sleeps all right, as though the spirits were operating through the father to torment the son....

With Christian love,
R. E. B. NICHOLSON.


TRUTH LITERATURE FOR THE BLIND.

MY DEARLY BELOVED PASTOR:--

Although your time is so much taken up, yet I beg a few minutes to present a little in regard to the work for the blind, the spiritual eyes of some of whom are being opened to see the grand and glorious Truth.

The work has been going on steadily, and, by the Lord's grace, I have been enabled to help quite a number to reading matter in the English braille type. I have also been able to get out two or three tracts in the American braille, and a few in the New York point system, thus endeavoring to accommodate all classes of the blind. These different systems are used by blind people in different parts of the country. We have Volume 1 in the English braille, and this has done good work, but it has not reached all who would like to read it, for I have had a number of calls from those who felt they could not learn a new system.

I want to give you one instance of the loving zeal of a blind sister in Canada. So anxious was she to do something to help scatter the Truth abroad that she wrote me asking permission to re-write from the English braille into New York point some of the tracts that I had sent her. She has sent me three tracts already. Others also are doing good work in copying, both blind and seeing; and so, under the Lord's guidance, the work goes on.

I know the time is short for you to receive this and send me an answer, but I have written as soon as I could ascertain that I could get the work done. I hope I may get just a word from you which will enable me to push on, feeling that the Society will stand back of me financially.

And now, wishing you God's richest blessing on all your work, and assuring you of my continued prayers in your behalf, I am,

Yours with Christian love,
F. B. GOULD.


page 382
DEAR SIR:--

A few months ago a gentleman called here from whom I obtained three volumes of STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES. I am so deeply interested in them that I would like to get the other three. They have aroused a hunger for all the information possible to be gained on the all-absorbing topic. Surely, we are privileged whose lot is cast in the glorious dawn of the Millennium.

Your precious books were a grand surprise to me--my first intimation of the finding of the key to the wonderful prophecies. Although I have long noticed the changes constantly going on in the world, and have felt for years that the time was drawing near, yet I owe to you the realization of the great truth and desire to know if I may at once subscribe for your semi-monthly publication by addressing you in Brooklyn; or have you an agent in our city of whom I can procure tracts and other books, both for myself and others? Being in my 79th year, the time may be very short for me, and I hope I may be permitted to distribute to at least a few the glorious tidings.

Yours respectfully,
MRS. M. A. COOPER.--Mo.


DEAR PASTOR RUSSELL:--

TOWER of Oct. 1 to hand, containing notice of your departure for England, also Brother Harris' letter in respect to reading DAWNS, etc., as published in TOWER of Sept. 15, 1910, which is but a reiteration of the same notice published in THE TOWER of June 15, 1900, with only the remarks about failure to read added.

Your verbal instruction given the Elders, etc., at Celoron Convention is thus brought forcefully to mind, to wit: To preach by teaching; not to preach Pastor Russell, but to teach "Present Truth," God's revealed Word, properly holding the Head, looking to God through the merit of the Master's sacrifice, teaching that he is now present a Spirit Being, who hath girded himself and is spreading the feast.

In my own case, if it were not for the DAWNS and THE TOWER Bible Comments on the Scriptures relative to the Divine Plan, I would still be a skeptic and avowed Socialist, as I was for seven years after withdrawing from the M.E. Church and previous to obtaining Vol. 1, which, by the way, was received at the same hand as did Brother Van Amburgh, at Huron, S.D., though Brother Van is years in advance of me in the Truth. However, it took the testimony of that Stone Witness, "The Pyramid," treated in Vol. 3, to set me making use of the Bible to see if it indeed be true, and that God really loved mankind--was indeed a God of mercy.

Yet other seven years transpired before I had read all six volumes and become a subscriber to THE WATCH TOWER. Though it is twenty-one years since withdrawing from Churchianity, it is only three years since I fully consecrated to be dead with Christ, symbolizing shortly afterward upon the occasion of Brother Bundy's pilgrimage to the coast, and taking the Vow subsequently, rejoicing and abiding with confidence in the joy of the Lord.

I ask a further continuance and interest in your prayers, that I and mine may abide in the faith, properly holding the Head, duly recognizing the sign board, "That Servant," the Channel through which we are privileged to partake of the meat, the strong meat, due in its season. Praying your safe return to the United States and that the prophecy of Ezekiel, "I have done as thou hast commanded," may be fulfilled in its due time.

Your feeble fellow-servant in Christ,
LOWELL G. FULLER.


[R4726 : page 382]
BELOVED PASTOR:--

Quite recently we learned that you are pleased to receive a note when one has taken the Vow of consecration to the Lord.

We take the opportunity your visit affords of notifying you that my wife and myself registered the Vow about May 30, 1910.

It was a step that seemed to require a deal of consideration, but from the other side of the Vow (after having taken it) it was as plain as possible.

You can understand how great has been our blessed experiences since that stand was taken.

We are conscious that the keynote of all experience in Christ is love chiefly, and we are glad to say that that gift is growing more and more in us.

We are consuming the food you are privileged to supply to us and believe we are daily being strengthened to sacrifice more to the Lord, through our dear Saviour and the Truth.

Your loving brother and servant in the Lord,
ARTHUR KNIGHT.



page 382

BEREAN QUESTIONS IN SCRIPTURE STUDIES

Series VI., Study III.--The Call of The New Creation.

JANUARY 1

(91) What did the anointing of the High Priest typify? P. 131, par. 2.

(92) What did the holy anointing oil represent? P. 132, par. 1.

(93) Why are the marks of sanctification in the New Creation not admired or approved by the world? P. 132, par. 2.

(94) While sanctification has its two parts, God's and man's, what additional element is essential? P. 133, par. 1.

(95) Explain the operation of the Word, or "wisdom of God" through Christ, toward us as New Creatures, and our attitude toward it. P. 133, par. 2.

(96) What is the blessed result of full consecration experienced by these New Creatures who appropriate the exceeding great and precious promises of God? P. 134, par. 1.

(97) Explain how the experiences of the fully consecrated vary according to temperament. P. 134, par. 2.

(98) If consecration does not signify human perfection, how can God accept our sacrifices? (P. 136, par. 1.) How does Christ impute to us his merit? P. 109.

JANUARY 8

(99) What is our first and continual duty with respect to our imperfections in the flesh? P. 136, par. 2.

(100) What effect will true sanctification have upon our lives? P. 137, par. 1.

(101) What should be the mainspring of all our energies? P. 137, par. 1, last part.

(102) Our Lord prayed, "Sanctify them through thy Truth." What kind of Truth can produce the sanctification acceptable unto God? Pp. 137, 138.

(103) What most excellent admonition along this line is given us by the Apostle Paul? P. 139.

(104) How much emotion should be expected in Sanctification? Is there Scriptural reason for expecting unusual page 383 outward manifestations or emotions as a proof of our acceptance with the Lord? P. 140.

(105) Contrast the experiences of those consecrated persons who have been born of Christian parents with those of others not so favored. P. 141, par. 1 and P. 142, par. 1.

(106) What is evidently the Lord's intention in leaving so many things comparatively obscure to our human judgment? P. 142, par. 2.

JANUARY 15

(107) What is signified by "the opening of the eyes of our understanding," and how is this typified in the Tabernacle pictures? P. 143, par. 1.

(108) Since our feelings depend so largely upon our temperaments, how may we experience the perpetual blessing of the joys of faith? P. 143, par. 2.

(109) What is the cause of "earth-born" clouds, which sometimes come between the consecrated and their Lord? P. 144, par. 1,2.

(110) To what kind of diseases does the Psalmist refer saying, "Who healeth all thy diseases?" Psa. 103:2-5? And how are they healed? P. 145, par. 1.

(111) What mistake is frequently made by many New Creatures with respect to soul-sickness or disease? P. 145, par. 2.

(112) What course should properly be pursued in these cases? P. 146, par. 1; P. 147, par. 1.

(113) What three difficulties may be experienced by some New Creatures in coming to the Throne of Grace? P. 147, par. 2.

(114) What are the proper remedies for these difficulties? P. 148, par. 1.

(115) Mention another class of consecrated but spiritually diseased, and the prescribed remedy for this condition of things. P. 148, par. 2; P. 149.

(116) What should be the attitude of the other New Creatures toward those who "Walk disorderly?" P. 150, par. 1.

(117) How should the Lord's consecrated ones who are in a lean and starved condition be dealt with? P. 150, par. 2.

JANUARY 22

(118) Is consecration implied in acceptable justification? P. 151, par. 1.

(119) Is it possible under present conditions to go far along the path of justification without reaching the gateway of self-denial--full consecration unto death? P. 152, par. 1,2.

(120) What is the character of some of the by-paths outside this gateway of full consecration? P. 153, par. 1.

(121) In what way only can the fullness of joy and peace which come with the acceptance of Christ as our Redeemer be retained? P. 153, par. 2.

(122) Are those who refuse to consecrate immediately cut off from Divine favor? P. 153, par. 3.

(123) To whom only do the exceeding great and precious promises of God belong? P. 154, par. 1.

(124) May those who fail to consecrate properly continue to enjoy the privileges of prayer? P. 154, par. 2.

(125) What course should be pursued by any of these who desire further favor from the Lord? P. 155, par. 1,2.

(126) What should be done by any who are "feeling after God," yet not fully ready for a complete surrender to the will of God? P. 155, par. 3.

(127) In view of the fact that the "high calling" ended in 1881, what difference should this make with respect to the consecration? P. 156, par. 1,2.

JANUARY 29

(128) Mention one erroneous view of sanctification held by the "Holiness People." P. 157, par. 1,2.

(129) Explain the error of holding that the entire object of sanctification is the avoidance of sin. P. 158, par. 1.

(130) What is the thought contained in the word redemption? P. 158, par. 2.

(131) How was this redemption obtained and how does it apply to the New Creation? P. 159, par. 1.

(132) Explain the use of the word Apolutrosis in Luke 21:28 and Ephesians 4:30. P. 159, par. 2, first part.

(133) Explain Ephesians 1:7 and harmonize these two uses of the word redemption. P. 159, par. 2, last part.

(134) Explain Romans 3:24 and 8:20-23. P. 160, par. 1.

(135) How does believing on the Lord Jesus Christ give us "everlasting life?" P. 160, par. 2; P. 161, par. 1.

(136) In what manner are our Lord's sufferings, death and resurrection identified with our redemption (deliverance) present and future? P. 161, par. 2,3.



page 385
December 1st

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

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

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

SEMI-MONTHLY
VOL. XXXIDECEMBER 15No. 24
A.D. 1910--A.M. 6038


CONTENTS

1910--The Annual Report--1910387
Perilous Times at Hand389
"Men of Your Own Selves Shall Arise Speaking Perverse Things390
"From Such Turn Away391
The Precious Truth Is God's Message392
The Different Forms of Evil392
Actions, Words and Thoughts393
Iniquitous Government Successful394
Lessons Here for Us394
Antitypical Ahab and Jezebel395
Jehoshaphat's One Mistake395
Three and a Half Years Without Rain396
The Gifts and Fruits of the Spirit397
Gifts of Spirit Were for Early Church397
Fruits of Spirit Necessary to Success in Race398
The True Shepherd and His Flock398
Some Interesting Letters399

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

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

page 386

THIS JOURNAL AND ITS SACRED MISSION

THIS 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 man," "a ransom
for all," and will be "the true light which lighteth
"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 & TRACT SOCIETY
CHARLES T. RUSSELL, PRESIDENT
"BROOKLYN TABERNACLE," 13-17 HICKS ST.,
BROOKLYN, N.Y., U.S.A.

Foreign Agencies:--British Branch: 24 Eversholt St., London, N.W. German Branch: Unterdorner Str., 76, Barmen. Australasian Branch: Flinders Building, Flinders St., Melbourne.


ANNUAL SUBSCRIPTION PRICE, $1.00 (4s.) IN ADVANCE.
SEND MONEY BY EXPRESS, BANK DRAFT, POSTAL ORDER, OR REGISTERED.
FROM FOREIGN COUNTRIES BY FOREIGN MONEY ORDERS, ONLY.


Terms to the Lord's Poor as Follows:--All Bible Students who, by reason of old age, or other infirmity or adversity, are unable to pay for this Journal, will be supplied Free if they send a Postal Card each May stating their case and requesting its continuance. We are not only willing, but anxious, that all such be on our list continually and in touch with the Studies, etc.



ALSO FRENCH, GERMAN, SWEDISH AND DANISH EDITIONS.
SAMPLE COPIES FREE.


ENTERED AS SECOND-CLASS MAIL MATTER AT BROOKLYN, N.Y., POSTOFFICE ENTERED AS SECOND-CLASS MATTER AT THE POSTOFFICE DEPT., OTTAWA, CANADA

INTERNATIONAL BIBLE STUDENTS ASSOCIATION MEETINGS


CHATTANOOGA, TENN., DEC. 25

Morning Rally, 10:30 o'clock, at Knights of Pythias Hall, Walnut St. Discourse for the public at 3 p.m., in the Bijou Theatre, 6th and Walnut Sts. Visiting friends will be cordially welcomed.

MOBILE, ALA., DEC. 26

Morning Rally at 10 o'clock, in the Central Trades Council Hall, St. Michael St. Discourse for the public at 7:30 p.m. in the Battle House Auditorium. Visiting friends will be cordially welcomed.

BROOKLYN, N.Y., JAN. 1

Morning Rally for Praise and Testimony at 10:30 o'clock in the Brooklyn Tabernacle. The evening meeting at 7:30 o'clock will also be in the Tabernacle. Discourse for the public at 3 p.m. in the Brooklyn Academy of Music, Lafayette Ave. and St. Felix St. Topic, "Fear Not."

ST. PETERSBURG, FLA., JAN. 8

Morning Rally for Praise and Testimony at 10 o'clock. Discourse for the interested at 11 a.m. Public lecture at 3 p.m. All sessions will be in the Auditorium, Second Av., between Second and Third Sts.

CHARLESTON, S.C., JAN. 9

Discourse for the Public in German Artillery Hall at 8 p.m. Visiting friends will be cordially welcomed.

PHILADELPHIA, PA., JAN. 15.

BUFFALO, N.Y., JAN. 22

WASHINGTON, D.C., JAN. 29

BROOKLYN, N.Y., FEB. 5



page 386

STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES

SERIES I., "The Plan of the Ages," gives an outline of the Divine plan revealed in the Bible, relating to man's redemption and restitution: 386 pages, in embossed cloth, 35c. (1s. 6d.) India paper edition, 75c. (3s. 1-1/2d.)

This volume has been published as a special issue of our journal at the extremely low price of 5c. a copy, in any quantity, postage included (To foreign countries, 9c.) This enables people of slender purse to herald far and wide the good tidings in a most helpful form.

SERIES II., "The Time is at Hand," treats of the manner and time of the Lord's second coming, considering the Bible Testimony on this subject: 370 pages, in embossed cloth, 35c. (1s. 6d.) India paper edition, 75c. (3s. 1-1/2d.)

SERIES III., "Thy Kingdom Come," considers prophecies which mark events connected with the "Time of the End," the glorification of the Church and the establishment of the Millennial Kingdom; it also contains a chapter of the Great Pyramid, showing its corroboration of the dates and other teachings of the Bible: 384 pages, in embossed cloth, 35c. (1s. 6d.) India paper edition, 75c. (3s. 1-1/2d.)

SERIES IV., "The Day of Vengeance," shows that the dissolution of the present order of things is in progress, and that all the panaceas offered are valueless to avert the predicted end. It marks in these events the fulfilment of prophecy, noting specially our Lord's great prophecy of Matt. 24 and Zech. 14:1-9: 660 pages, in embossed cloth, 35c. (1s. 6d.) India paper edition, 85c. (3s. 6-1/2d.)

SERIES V., "The Atonement Between God and Man," treats an all-important subject--the hub, the center around which all the features of Divine grace revolve. Its topic deserves the most careful and prayerful consideration on the part of all true Christians: 507 pages, in embossed cloth, 35c. (1s. 6d.) India paper edition, 85c. (3s. 6-1/2d.)

SERIES VI., "The New Creation," deals with the Creative Week (Genesis 1 and 2), and with the Church, God's "New Creation." It examines the personnel, organization, rites, ceremonies, obligations and hopes appertaining to those called and accepted as members of the Body under the Head: 740 pages, in embossed cloth, 35c. (1s. 6d.) India paper edition, 85c. (3s. 6-1/2d.)

The above prices include postage.

IN FULL LEATHER BINDING, gilt edges, the set (6 vols.) $3.00, (12s. 6d.), plus postage, 60c. (2s. 6d.)

Also published in foreign languages as follows: In German, five vols.; in Swedish, Vols. 1, 2, 3 and 5; in Dano-Norwegian, four vols.; in Greek, three vols.; in French, two vols.; in Hollandish, Spanish, Italian, Hungarian and Polish, one vol. each.; bound in cloth, uniform with English edition, prices the same.

Vol. 6, German and Swedish (WATCH TOWER form), $1.50 each.



[R4726 : page 387]

1910--THE ANNUAL REPORT--1910
WATCH TOWER BIBLE AND TRACT SOCIETY
DECEMBER 1, 1909, TO DECEMBER 1, 1910.

Supplementary Report from Foreign Branches, January 1.

THE nearer we get to the grand consummation of our hopes, the more swiftly do the years go by, and the more interesting and meaningful do they become to us. If we realize our hopes, four more years will see the "elect" little flock of God all gathered; and the world's time of trouble begun, in which brethren of the "great company" will share and wash their robes in the blood of the Lamb. Is it any wonder that we all feel a fervency of zeal? Surely not!

We admit, as we have always done, that "We walk by faith and not by sight--that our chronology is not indisputable --that our opinion of it is fallible--that it is not clear to us just how all of the "little flock" can pass into death so speedily! Nevertheless, we rejoice in faith and love and zeal. And this year's Report shows that the dear friends everywhere are of one mind and of one heart on the subject. They have accomplished this year exploits in the publishing of the Truth which put all other years in the shade in many particulars.

The sentiment of all seems to accord with our own-- that the chronology (and the prophetic times and seasons which so wonderfully interlock with it and seem to prove it) has brought great joy and refreshment, even if later on it should appear that we have not located the end of the Times of the Gentiles exactly. Their end is surely near, if not on October 1st, 1914, as we still believe.

At any rate, even if we were in the same "outer darkness" as the world on subjects chronological, have we not more than all others to rejoice us in respect to The Divine Plan of the Ages? We surely have the only satisfying portion we know of, anywhere.

"It satisfies our longings
As nothing else could do."

This satisfaction, and the joy and peace and rest and zeal which accompany it, are reflected in our Report of the past year's work. The dear friends have not only contributed more than ever to the funds which make the wheels of the work move, but they have also been more energetic than ever before in the distribution of the Volunteer literature and in encouraging the Newspaper work.

Only in the Colporteuring of the SCRIPTURE STUDIES are we disappointed. The circulation of these "Bible Keys," as some term them, has lagged. Let us watch, pray and labor for more wisdom and blessing for the year 1911. The people are more open-minded than ever before, and seemingly more willing to read. This branch of the service has been specially blessed and used of the Lord hitherto, and we must not let it lag by reason of any inattention on our part. Any of the dear Colporteurs who may think that they see the reason of the decline, the President of the Society will be glad to hear from re the matter.

CORRESPONDENCE DEPARTMENT
LETTERS AND CARDS RECEIVED (BROOKLYN), 112,085.
LETTERS AND CARDS SENT OUT (BROOKLYN), 144,311.

We are glad to hear from our numerous readers frequently. We consider our wonderful mail service a God-given blessing, and desire to use it more and more in the harvest work. However, we do not pretend to answer all letters, but only such as require an answer.

Many delightful letters thus go unanswered. Some of these tell of having taken "The Vow," and the great blessings since experienced. Others recite family history covering years and pages, some curious and some interesting. Others tell us the Plan of God, presumably that we may know that they comprehend it as we do, or to emphasize some point of difference. We are glad to have the dear WATCH TOWER readers thus unbosom themselves. It does them good as well as us. But we do not reply to such letters.

We reply to letters needing replies--to questions, etc. And many of our replies are brief, referring the questioner to the SCRIPTURE STUDIES volumes, or to back issues of THE WATCH TOWER, because these answer more thoroughly than could a letter of remarkable length. But continue to write us of your interest in the Truth and your love and prayers, even though you get no reply. And when you send questions, number them and write them on a separate page or sheet.

PILGRIM SERVICE IN UNITED STATES AND CANADA
     Number engaged in Pilgrim service............       57
     Number of miles traveled.....................  477,247
     Number of cities visited by Pilgrims.........    3,521
     Number of public meetings held...............    3,297
     Number of parlor meetings held...............    7,416

This department of the harvest work continues to demonstrate its worth to the household of faith. Our readers will be interested in the below summary. page 388

During the past six months we have added a new feature, with excellent success. It combines an increased public service for the Pilgrims and at the same time increases the Volunteer work, in which all may engage. It is as follows:--

Sunday appointments for the traveling Pilgrims are given preferably to those cities whose classes have signified their desire and ability to secure fine auditoriums and to advertise the service thoroughly. To such we send special issues of the PEOPLES PULPIT, bearing the announcement on the last page, for free circulation--sufficient for the city. We also send window-cards (requiring but little printing).

The result has been much larger public meetings by several of the Pilgrims and additional millions of copies of PEOPLES PULPIT circulated. We commend the plan to all the classes located in large cities.

To ascertain the quantity of PEOPLES PULPITS necessary to put one copy in the home of every English-speaking family perplexes some. Decide thus: Ascertain approximately the number of English speaking population and divide that number by five. The result will be the number necessary to supply every family.

THE WATCH TOWER

We published 30,000 WATCH TOWERS every issue-- occasionally more. Some of these went out as "sample copies." Quite a large number went to "the Lord's Poor" --paid for out of a special fund. Altogether, we reckon that the profit on THE WATCH TOWER just about offsets the yearly loss on SCRIPTURE STUDIES, sold mostly to Colporteurs, and at a loss--counting foreign translations and "bad" accounts.

Some of our old readers have taken offense that their names were stricken from our lists. We again assure them that they are welcome to this journal so long as it is published--regardless of the subscription fee. But they must ask for it. Either ask it free, paid for from the special fund, or ask it on credit, payable at convenience; even if that should mean never. If you never pay for it you will have it free. We are anxious that our lists contain the names of all in sympathy with THE WATCH TOWER'S teachings.

We explain again that because our Government carries newspapers at such a very cheap rate, it now exercises a careful inspection of the lists of all publications to insure that no names continue on newspaper lists long after expiration.

We still feel that our list of WATCH TOWER subscribers but poorly represents the total number of the interested. We ask the aid of all our readers to the desired end. All who feel profited by the reading of THE WATCH TOWER are requested to recommend it to others who have read the STUDIES, explaining to them our very liberal terms and our desire that it go to all the brethren regularly.

"SCRIPTURE STUDIES" AND BOOKLETS
     SCRIPTURE STUDIES put into circulation.......  600,157
     Mannas.......................................   21,000
     Booklets.....................................   25,000

This is a great showing, even though it does not in every feature exceed the records of 1908 and 1909. The figures include those of Great Britain.

We take this opportunity to remark that the circulation of the MANNA appears to be second only to the STUDIES in beneficial effects. One Colporteur followed his canvass for STUDIES with the HEAVENLY MANNA. He sold these where he had failed to sell STUDIES. Some months after he again canvassed with STUDIES. He was agreeably surprised that nearly all who had purchased the MANNA were ready and anxious for STUDIES. They asked, eagerly, "Are those books from the pen which wrote the MANNA comments? If so we want them!" Surely no more desirable Christmas gifts could be found than STUDIES, MANNA, THE WATCH TOWER and the DIAGLOTT. Every gift should represent the giver, either as his handiwork or as expressing his sentiments--is our suggestion to friends of the Truth.

FREE LITERATURE CIRCULATED

Our tract work goes on amazingly. By it all of the Lord's people, poor or rich, have opportunity for service. They are realizing this more and more. As their consecration and zeal deepen they send us money for the printing and assist in the circulation. Hence the astounding report of this year, the like of which no one ever dreamed of. We presume it safe to say that no other organization ever put out one-tenth this amount of free literature in a year, although some have dollars to our pennies.

We trust that nearly every reader of this Report can say to himself, as he reads the summary below, "God blessed me with the opportunity to share in this branch of the harvest work, and I used it as a blessed privilege. I have had an active share in this labor of love. I invested a portion of my 'Talent' thus instead of hiding it in the earth--in pleasure or business or cares of this life."

Let any who have had a hand in this blessed service be on the lookout how they may double the use of their talent next year--extending their labors to nearby towns not yet served. And let such as have not yet taken a hand in the work resolve that they will not miss the golden opportunity next year. We doubt not the Lord will supply the financial means. We start the new year with faith that he will, with a firm belief that a great work is yet to be accomplished, that the Lord still has "much people" in Babylon to whom he would have us carry the good tidings which have so blessed us.

PEOPLES PULPIT proves itself more attractive for tract-work than any other we have ever used. It is more dignified than any other, both for distributors and readers.

       Total pieces of English literature, tracts, chiefly
     PEOPLES PULPIT, given free in America and Great
     Britain.................................... 20,797,165
       This, represented in ordinary tract pages, would
     mean in pages..............................350,957,360

These figures are so great that but few can comprehend their significance.

"PEOPLES PULPIT" IN OTHER LANGUAGES CIRCULATED FREE IN UNITED STATES, CANADA AND MEXICO.
     Swedish Copies.......210,500     Pages.......3,368,000
     Spanish   "   ....... 32,000       "  .......  512,000
     Polish    "   ....... 80,000       "  .......1,280,000
     Hungarian "   ....... 38,000       "  .......  608,000
     German    "   .......  5,000       "  .......   80,000
     Greek     "   ....... 21,000       "  .......  176,000
     Italian   "   ....... 53,500       "  .......  856,000
                          _______                 _________
          Total...........440,000                 6,880,000

THE NEWSPAPER WORK

Our friends and our foes are alike astounded at the success which the Lord has granted to the work of newspaper evangelization. More than a thousand papers in the United States and Canada are now publishing our sermons and Bible Studies weekly. The circulation of these papers varies from 2,500 to 300,000 per issue. The syndicate handling the matter assure us that thus these weekly presentations of the Truth enter at least ten million homes. page 389

And, more and more they are being read. Hundreds of letters tell us of this, and the Colporteurs are finding that they sell the STUDIES the more readily by telling that they are from the same source as the sermons.

"DIE STIMME" TO THE JEWS

God's Message to the Jews is being heard the world around. Not only were several of our sermons to the Jews published to the extent of 107,600 copies in Jewish papers in the English language, but in 655,000 copies of the Yiddish papers besides 325,000 copies of Die Stimme. These have been republished, we learn, in Russia and elsewhere. True, there was some opposition, but this, we believe, led the Jews to take more careful notice of the Message.

It is not our expectation that the Jews will become Christians now. It will be after they shall have returned to Palestine and the spirit of prayer and supplication shall have been poured on them, that they will "look upon him whom they pierced." Our message is to comfort them and to turn their eyes toward Palestine and to their glorious promises centering there. The Scriptures seem to imply that the "Great Company" will have the honor and privilege of leading them to recognize Jesus as Messiah, during the time of trouble.

OUR FINANCIAL SHOWING

Having in mind the foregoing work it might be expected that millions of money had been expended in order to its accomplishment. But, dear friends, economy is associated with every part of the work. No salaries are paid--merely moderate expenses. Yet we are all comfortable and very thankful and happy.

Expended for above work in
     America......................................$139,743.80
Expended elsewhere:
 In Great Britain........................$7,965.55
 In Germany.............................. 3,673.27
 In Australasia..........................   487.06
 In India................................   522.37
 In S. Africa............................ 1,438.62
 In Sweden............................... 1,675.82
 In Norway and Denmark................... 3,494.58
 In Jamaica..............................   935.29
 In France, Italy and Swiss..............   295.73
 In Greece...............................   396.45
 In Mexico...............................    50.50
                                         _________
                                                    20,935.24
                                                  ___________
Total expenditure.................................$160,679.04
Receipts:
 Balance from 1909.....................$  9,718.38
Good Hopes, Tract Fund, etc............ 139,058.72
                                       ___________
                                                   148,777.10
                                                  ___________
Shortage..........................................$ 11,901.94

This is close for the extent of the work, and if other "Good Hopes" be realized this balance will be wiped out before January, 1911.

We congratulate all of our dear co-laborers and praise God for the privileges thus represented.

Very truly your servant in the Lord,
C. T. RUSSELL, President.



[R4728 : page 389]

PERILOUS TIMES AT HAND

"This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come."--2 Tim. 3:1.
REALIZING that we are now living in the very times referred to by the Apostle, some may inquire, How can this be? Are not these times, in comparison with times past, especially favorable to the prosperity of the Church? Time was when fire and sword and guillotine and rack were systematically employed to exterminate the true saints of God, when the Word of God was a book prohibited, and when the prison and the dungeon rewarded the faithful searching of the Scriptures. And is there not also more Truth due and understood now than formerly, as well as full liberty (if a man is pleased to exercise it) to believe and teach, either in private or in public, whatever he believes to be Truth?

Yes, such are the favorable conditions of our day. Never, in all the history of the Church, has there been a day of such privilege and blessing--such increase of knowledge and general intelligence, such facilities for the general diffusion of knowledge and such breadth of individual liberty--of conscience, of speech and of action --as today. The spirit of liberty is abroad in the earth, and though the wily enemies that once fettered and handcuffed and imprisoned it still live, and would fain imprison it as before, they regretfully realize that the soaring eagle is on the wing and may never be pinioned again. But hand in hand with all these advantages, strange to say, comes the Church's greatest peril. True, there is little peril to physical life, or earthly property; but these, to the true saints, are of minor importance, for they count not their earthly life dear unto them if by any means they may attain the divine nature and glory to which they are called.

The peril of these times is to the spiritual nature of the saints and to their valuable inheritance in the exceeding great and precious promises of God, which are all yea and amen in Christ Jesus. Subtle influences are now at work seeking to dwarf and extinguish the spiritual life and to rob the saints of their glorious hope, to sap stealthily the very foundations of Christianity, and thus effectually to overthrow the whole superstructure of the Christian faith in the minds of many, causing them thus to stumble and lose their glorious inheritance as joint-heirs with Christ.

The present besetments, being of this subtle character, are the more calculated to delude and ensnare, so that if one allows himself to be for a moment off his guard, the agencies of the Adversary will gain an advantage and use it to entrap the unwary one. And God will permit such snares because only those who are loyal and faithful, and therefore ever watchful, are counted worthy to escape their strong delusion. "Watch ye, therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man."--Matt. 21:36.

MANNER OF APPROACH OF THESE TIMES

The Apostle forewarns the Church, not only of the certainty of such perils, and of their character, but also of their manner of approach. On one occasion he said, "For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. (Such were the great and destructive papal powers.) Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things to draw away disciples after them." (Acts 20:29,30.) Some of these Paul and the early Church encountered in their day.

Paul was often in peril among false brethren who, concerning the faith, had made shipwreck, and who greatly withstood his words--his efforts to build up the [R4728 : page 390] Church in the most holy faith. (2 Cor. 11:26; I Tim. 1:19; 2 Tim. 4:14-17.) And he shows that from such false brethren, brethren who have erred from the Truth and become teachers of false doctrine, will come the Church's greatest peril in these last times. (2 Tim. 2:16-18; 3:5.) And in order that we might recognize and beware of them, he very minutely described them, though the clear significance of the warning is somewhat beclouded by a faulty translation, which reads as follows:--

"For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,* truce-breakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good; traitors, heady, high-minded, lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God; having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof; ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the Truth."

*The Sinaitic, the oldest and most reliable MS., omits the words, "without natural affection," they being no part of the original text.

The description as here translated, the reader will observe, is incongruous; for men of such villainous character could have no form of godliness. Read the description again and consider, How could a proud, covetous, boastful blasphemer, a truce-breaker, a false accuser, incontinent and fierce, a despiser of those that are good, a heady, high-minded, pleasure-loving traitor, have any form of godliness whatever, or deceive any one in this respect? Such a fierce character and bold blasphemer could not possibly palm himself off as a child of God; nor would he attempt it. The fact is that our translators did not fully comprehend the Apostle's language, and in rendering it into English they put the heaviest possible construction upon the Greek words, and thus the picture of these persons is overdrawn. Thus, for instance, the Greek word here rendered "blasphemers" (V. 3) is blasphemos, which signifies one speaking injuriously, or an evil-speaker.

Now, judging merely by the word, regardless of the context, we would not know whether in this instance the evil-speaking is carried to the extent of revilings or not; but as it stands related to the context--in view of the after statement that these have a form of godliness (V. 5), though lacking its real power--we must conclude that those milder or more subtle forms of evil-speaking, which would be consistent with hypocritical forms of godliness, are referred to, and therefore that our English word blaspheme, though it means evil-speaking, is too strong a term by which here to translate the Greek word blasphemos; for the full and generally understood significance of the English word blaspheme is--"To speak of the Supreme Being in terms of impious irreverence, to revile or speak reproachfully of God, Christ, or the holy Spirit--to speak wickedly of, to utter abuse or calumny against, to speak reproachfully of."--Webster.

So also the word apeithes rendered "disobedient," signifies not persuaded; and the expression "disobedient to parents" would consequently signify not of the same persuasion, or not of the same mind as were the parents. The word anosios, rendered "unholy," which signifies unkind, or unholy, would likewise, in view of the context, be better rendered by the milder English term, unkind. The word aspondos rendered "truce-breakers" (V. 3), signifies irreconcilable or implacable--i.e., stubborn or constant in enmity. The word akrates, rendered "incontinent," signifies more properly, without strength, or without self-control. Though this thought is also in the English word "incontinent," a coarser meaning generally attaches to the word. The word anemeros, rendered "fierce," signifies not mild, savage. That is, it may be a great or a small lack of mildness, amounting in some cases to savage bitterness. But, again, the fierce or savage idea is not compatible with any pretentions to godliness, as intimated in verse 5. The word aphilagathos, rendered "despisers of those that are good," would thus be better rendered not friendly to the good.

Thus revised, the Apostle's language reads as follows: "For men shall be lovers of their own selves (selfish), covetous, boasters, proud, evil-speakers, not of the same mind as were their forefathers (i.e., devisers of new doctrines), unthankful, unkind, irreconcilable, false accusers, without self-control, not mild, not friendly to those that are good--traitors, heady, high-minded, lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God (i.e., preferring their own will or pleasure to the will or pleasure of God); having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof; ever learning, and never able to come to a knowledge of the truth."

"MEN OF YOUR OWN SELVES SHALL ARISE SPEAKING PERVERSE THINGS"

It should be observed also that the word men, in verse 2, is emphatic in the Greek text, as shown in the Emphatic Diaglott, thus indicating that a particular class of men is here referred to, which, according to the description, can be none other than those mentioned in Acts 20:29,30, viz., men "of your own selves (men of your own company, men whom you have hitherto regarded as members of the Body of Christ, and who still claim to be such), who shall arise speaking perverse things (perverting the Truth).

But why, you ask, should any one who had once received the Truth desire to pervert it? The Apostle answers that their object is) to draw away disciples after them." And for this purpose, of leading away disciples after them, they keep up the form of godliness, although they deny its power--the only power by means of which any of the fallen race can be reckoned godly or righteous in God's sight, viz., the power of the precious blood of Christ, which cleanseth us from all sin, as long as we appreciate and accept this salvation through faith in his blood.

Well may we inquire, as we realize that we are living in the last days here referred to, Is there such a class of enemies to the Truth and to the Church actually in existence today? Truly, the voice of prophecy has never set up a false alarm, or foretold an uncertain event. The perilous times have come and the foretold perils are all about us. Side by side in the same communities with the humble, faithful, consecrated saints--in the same little assemblings together of those who have escaped from the bondage of Babylon, in the same households, and often at the same table of the Lord, there has also been developing a class who are "lovers of their own selves (selfish), covetous (of honors and distinction and the praise of men--ambitious), boasters (as though the credit of the Truth now due and received were in some way due to them, and as though they had a right therefore to alter and amend it at their pleasure), proud" (of that knowledge which should be received with only humility and thankfulness, and which can be retained only under these conditions).

Because the light of the newly unfolding Truth has dawned upon their pathway, they, in common with the faithful saints, no longer are of the same mind as were their parents; but the goodness of God thus manifested to them, instead of cultivating in them a spirit of thankfulness [R4728 : page 391] and co-operation, which is its design, seems to arouse a spirit of pride and ambition, which does not long hesitate to make merchandise of the Truth for ambitious ends, however trivial and foolish those ends may be. And in pursuance of the ambitious policy, by degrees they become "evil-speakers (against the doctrine of Christ and those who believe and teach it), unkind, unfriendly to those that are good (who hold fast the Truth in righteousness), and false accusers" (of such). As they proceed in this way they seem to lose all former strength of Christian character. They become irreconcilable to the Truth, so that neither Scripture, nor reason, nor the example of the faithful, has power to restore them. Loving their own wills more than the will of God, they grow more and more proud and boastful of their attainments-- high-minded and heady. Not submitting themselves to the Head of the Body, Christ Jesus, they are ambitious to head new factions themselves, and thus they turn traitors to the Truth.

They claim, too, to be very earnest students of the Word of God; and so they are, but they never come to a knowledge of the Truth. They are after something new, some new and peculiar "find" in the mine of God that will attract the wondering gaze of many curious disciples. But, alas for their purposes! There are no such real curiosities in the blessed Word of God; but the zeal of these ambitious ones is equal to the emergency, and one after another the actual truths are beclouded, distorted and perverted to this ignoble end and presented as newly-found truths. And the unwary receive them as such, not recognizing at first that they are subversive of the entire system of Divine Truth. Thus their faith in the truths already learned is unwittingly undermined; they are caught in the snare of the Enemy; and as they continue to give ear to these seductive influences they become more and more entangled, until, having lost their anchorage, they find themselves adrift on a vast sea of unbelief, floating they know not whither. Like their leaders, they may retain the form of godliness, but have lost its power.

THEIR POLICIES SHALL BE VERY SEDUCTIVE

But there is another feature of the description of these false teachers, whose ambitions place so many perils in the pathway of the saints, which should not be overlooked. Verses 6 and 8 describe, or rather illustrate, the manner in which the influence of such teachers will be brought to bear upon the Church. Their opposition is not expressed in bold, defiant terms, and emphasized and enforced with vehemency. As here intimated, their policy is crafty, deceitful, sly, under pretentions of godliness, love of truth and zeal for the truth. Their influence will be exerted somewhat after the manner of a vile class mentioned in verse 6, who "creep into houses and lead captive silly women, laden with sin, and led away by various inordinate desires." Not that such will be the actual immoral character of these teachers, but that their policy will be similarly seductive.

Their actual course is more particularly described in verse 8 thus: "Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the Truth--men of corrupt minds (corrupted or turned aside from the Truth), reprobate concerning the faith." Thus we are shown that the opposition to the Truth will be manifested in a subtle, deceptive course similar to that of those opposers of Moses. They opposed Moses by doing something similar to what he did, thus confusing the people. God had given Moses power to do certain miracles in order to prove to Israel that Moses was his Divinely empowered agent. And Satan forthwith empowered his agents to duplicate those miracles, which they did to some extent, not perfectly, thus endeavoring to confuse the minds of the people and to unsettle their confidence in Moses and his leading and teaching.

Just so it is today. The studied effort of false teachers --false brethren developing in the very midst of the Church--is to offset the Truth by plausible forms of error, to unsettle confidence both in the Truth and in all teachers of the Truth, thus to lead away disciples after them and their theories. And in consequence of the allurements of these false teachers, and of the unfaithfulness of many to the love and service of the Truth which they have received, a class in the midst of the Church will give much encouragement to the ambitions of these false brethren; "for," says the Apostle (2 Tim. 4:3,4), "the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but after their own desires (desires for something new) shall they gather to themselves teachers, having itching ears (for new and strange things); and they shall turn away their ears from the Truth, and shall be turned unto fables."

Nor will this class be only a small minority; for, in order that the faithful may not be discouraged when brought face to face with these things, they are forewarned (Psa. 91:7) that, before this conflict ends, a thousand shall fall at their side and ten thousand at their right hand. Thus, realizing that God foreknew it all and that the accomplishment of his glorious purposes is not in the least endangered thereby, they may still have confidence and joy in view of the glorious consummation of his Plan, and of their promised position in it.

"FROM SUCH TURN AWAY"

But how shall the faithful believers act towards these false brethren in their midst? Shall they take them by the hand, as formerly, and bid them God-speed? Shall they recognize them as brethren in Christ? Are they owned of God as sons? Shall we indeed walk with them and be guiltless? What does the Apostle say we shall do? He says, "From such turn away." (V. 5.) "Be not ye partakers with them; for ye were formerly darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord; walk as children of light...and have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them." (Eph. 5:6-11.) And the Apostle John (2 John 11) emphasizes Paul's counsel, saying, "If there come any unto you and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God-speed; for he that biddeth him God-speed is partaker of his evil deeds."

Such "evil men," says Paul (V. 13), "shall wax worse and worse (more and more bold and aggressive, as they receive encouragement from that rapidly increasing class who will no longer endure sound doctrine), deceiving (others) and being deceived" (themselves--becoming more firmly intrenched in the snares of their own weaving, so as to make it impossible to extricate them). But, nevertheless, the time is coming when they shall proceed no further; for their folly shall be manifested unto all men, as was the folly of Jannes and Jambres, who could not forever withstand the teachings of Moses, the servant of God.--V. 9.

Then Paul proceeds to call attention to the ground of Timothy's confidence in himself as a faithful teacher of Divine Truth, saying, "But thou hast fully known my doctrine, manner of life, purpose, faith, long-suffering, charity, patience, persecutions, afflictions which came unto me at Antioch, at Iconium, at Lystra; what persecutions I endured; but out of them all the Lord delivered me."--Vs. 10,11.

Such are always the marks of a true teacher. His [R4728 : page 392] doctrine will be that which the most thorough investigation of the Scriptures most clearly proves and establishes beyond all peradventure. His manner of life will be consistent both with his faith and with his consecration to the Lord. His purpose will be the building up of the Church in the most holy faith. His faith will be positive and clear--not mere guesswork, but knowledge based upon the sure Word of God, with whom is no variableness nor shadow of turning. And his great love for the Church will be manifest, as was Paul's, and as was Moses' love for Israel, by long-suffering, patience and meek endurance of persecution, both from an opposing world and from false brethren arising in the midst of God's people. And in such persecutions no true teacher will be lacking; for "all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution." (V. 12.) Such has been the experience of every true teacher that God has ever raised up to deliver and guide his people. Witness Noah, Moses, Paul and Luther.

But, Beloved, our advice to you in these perilous times, when error is taking on its most baneful and deceitful forms, and when it is finding its most active agents amongst false brethren and sisters in your very midst, and when fidelity to Truth, therefore, occasions the severing of some of the tenderest social ties you have ever known, even among those with whom you once held sweet converse as you walked together to the house of God--yes, in these times let us again urge the counsel of Paul-- "Continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them"; for it is written (John 6:45), "They shall be all taught of God." Whoever the human agent may be that God has made use of to bring you to a knowledge of the truth, he was simply an index finger to help you trace it for yourself on the sacred page; and in humility and faithfulness he made no greater claim than this, assuring you that the holy Scriptures to which he ever and continually pointed are indeed "able to make you wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus"; and that "all Scripture, given by inspiration of God, is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works."

THE PRECIOUS TRUTH IS GOD'S MESSAGE

Therefore, dearly beloved, what you have learned concerning God's glorious Plan of the Ages, and concerning your privileged place in that Plan, as heirs of God and joint-heirs with Jesus Christ, his Son, and concerning the conditions upon which you hold this precious promise and may finally realize it, and concerning that great foundation doctrine of our redemption from sin and death through the precious blood of "the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself a ransom for all," upon which fact rests the whole superstructure of the wondrous and glorious Plan, hold fast these things, knowing of whom you have learned them. This precious Truth is God's message to you, not man's. No such high and glorious hope could ever have entered the mind of mortal man had not God revealed it by his Spirit, as he has done through faith in his Word, in his own due time. It is all in that Word. Search and see for yourselves; and be not faithless but believing. It comes not to you on the miserable authority of vain imagination, or dreams, or doubtful visions, but on the authority of God's most holy and authentic Word. True, it is almost too good to believe, but is it not just like our God? Does it not gloriously illustrate the breadth of his mighty mind, the scope of his marvelous wisdom and power, and the depth of his love and grace?

Continue, therefore, in the things which thou hast learned, and hast been assured of (having proved them yourselves from the Scriptures), and be not of them who turn away their ears from the Truth and are turned unto fables. And observing those who have a form of godliness, but who, nevertheless, by their false teachings deny the power thereof, "from such turn away," and "have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them."

We cannot serve two masters; we cannot espouse the cause of Truth and the cause of error as well; nor can we retain the friendship of God and of the advocates of error also. Who is on the Lord's side? Let them rally around the Lord's standard. All told, they will be only a "little flock." Like Gideon's band, the company now gathered by the proclamation of the harvest-message of Truth must be tested and sifted until only the loyal, faithful, true-hearted, brave and valiant soldiers of the cross remain; and to these, though their numbers be small, will the laurels of victory belong when Truth and righteousness finally prevail. Let no man boast of numbers now when the highest interests of the elect of God are all bound up with the faithful few, to whom it will be the Father's good pleasure to give the Kingdom.

"Count me the swords that have come."
"Lord, thousands on thousands are ready."
"Lo, these are too many, and with them are some
Whose hearts and whose hands are not steady.
He whose soul does not burn,
Let him take up his tent and return."

"Count me the swords that remain."
"Lord, hundreds on hundreds are daring."
"These yet are too many for me to attain
To the victory I am preparing.
Lead them down to the brink
Of the waters of Marah to drink."

"Lord, those who remain are but few,
And the hosts of the foe are appalling,
And what can a handful such as we do?"
"When ye hear from beyond my voice calling
Sound the trump! Hold the light!
Great Midian will melt in your sight."



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THE DIFFERENT FORMS OF EVILS

"Abstain from every form of evil."--I Thess. 5:22.
IN the Revised Version the word appearance is rendered form--"abstain from every form of evil." Evils have different forms. Sometimes they are crude and repulsive forms; sometimes they are attractive forms. No matter what the form, if we know the thing to be evil, sinful, injurious, either to ourselves or to others, we are to abstain from it. The Apostle has enumerated some of these forms of evil, namely, "Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, envying, murders, drunkenness, revelings and such like, of the which I have told you before, that they that do such things shall not inherit the Kingdom of God." (Gal. 5:19-21.) He says that these are the works of the flesh and that they are manifest.

To Christians these forms of evil must be very repulsive, because to be a Christian at all, one must have the New Mind. And the New Mind, in proportion as it is developed, will cleave to that which is good. We are to remember, however, the Scriptural admonition that all [R4728 : page 393] of these grosser evils have, for the Christian, a more refined form, as, for instance, when our Lord declared that "He that hateth his brother is a murderer." This is quite a fine line of distinction that applies to the Christian. We can see that that spirit in a Christian which would content itself with hating, instead of killing, a brother would be a very evil condition for the heart and would mean death to the New Creature.

Our Lord defines adultery as not merely the outward act, but also the having of an adulterous feeling in the heart--the having of a purpose or willingness in the heart. Hence the New Creature, taking this standpoint, should be earnest and zealous to guard his heart. And so with Covetousness. It is covetous to be discontented with what we have and desirous of obtaining what others have. This is one form of selfishness, and the spirit of selfish desires is evil. In fact, we might say that every form of evil, so far as we can discern, is a form of selfishness. No evil thing that we can think of in humanity would be apart from selfishness--the desire to have something, to be something. These things, leading on to their culmination, would mean a desire to be a usurper of power--to grasp things that are not our own--an improper condition of lust for power, lust for wealth, etc.

ACTIONS, WORDS AND THOUGHTS

Evils may be summed up into three forms--actions, words and thoughts. Evil actions are those which would be easily discerned by others. Evil words might not be quite so manifest. Evil thoughts, along any of the lines referred to by the Apostle, or along any other lines, are injurious, sinful, and should be abstained from. If, by reason of the weaknesses we have inherited and which belong to our mortal body, we be not fully able to master these evil propensities, we must show God that we are striving against them to the best of our ability. And as to what is the ability of each, is for himself and God to determine.

We should abstain not only from the evil things, but we should also seek to abstain from every appearance of evil. We should abstain, so far as possible, from doing things that we know to be good, if our friends or neighbors might misunderstand and consider these things to be evil. In order that our influence for the Truth may be the greater, we should avoid, not only evil in its every form, but everything that has an evil appearance.

To our mind, evil thinking is one of the greatest evils with which God's people have to contend. They can restrain actions and words to a considerable extent and they are, as the Apostle says, to seek to bring also every thought into obedience to the will of Christ. This does not mean that an evil thought would not cross the pathway of the mind. But the character of the thought should be discerned, whether it is mean or hurtful, and if so, it should be considered as a deadly foe and immediately a warfare should be waged against it, lest it fasten itself in some degree.

Has the Apostle suggested an impossibility when he says, "Abstain from every form of evil"? It is possible for us to abstain as New Creatures, to be out of sympathy with all forms of evil--to be antagonistic thereto. But on account of the imperfections of the flesh, one may not always be able to do this actually. The flesh is merely reckoned dead. It is the duty of the New Creature to see that the evil thought is battled against, if, indeed, it should ever attain full development. It is to wage this warfare against sin that we have enlisted with the great Captain of our salvation. He showed his own fidelity to righteousness and is the Father's Agent for abolishing sin.

And it is for those who would walk in the Master's footsteps to join in this crusade against sin. The first place to begin the crusade is in our own minds, in our own dealings. The Scriptures tell us to fight a good fight in our own flesh--not against sin in someone else. And to this our Lord refers when he warns us to overcome in ourselves ambition, pride, lasciviousness, etc.--not to let them conquer us as New Creatures. We are to conquer these things in the fallen flesh, in which we all share--some more and some less. According to our zeal we will have the Lord's approval. And according to unfaithfulness in this matter, we shall lack that approval.

All who serve the Lord's cause in any capacity--as Pilgrims, Colporteurs, etc.--should seek to keep their [R4729 : page 393] bodies under and live after the manner of the teachings of the Scriptures--and they will be blessed proportionately as they do this. And in proportion as they are less careful, they will be less blessed--less skilful in the preaching of the Word and in the service of the truth.

GOD'S DEALINGS UNDER THE DIFFERENT COVENANTS

The Decalogue of the Law Covenant was composed of prohibitions--"Thou shalt not." God's dealings with those who will become members of the "House of Sons" seem to be different from this. Instead of telling us what we shall not do, he tells us what we shall do.

How will it be with those with whom God will deal during the existence of the Messianic Kingdom, under the New Covenant arrangement? We answer that during the reign of Christ they will be under a very similar arrangement to that of the Jews under Moses. Thou shalt, and Thou shalt not, will be enforced by the great Mediator. And the enforcing will be necessary, because of the sins and imperfections and degradation in which the people will be. In harmony with this we read that "Whosoever will not obey that Prophet will be destroyed from among the people." (Acts 3:23.) The word obey implies a command and that the command is backed up by the authority to enforce.

The fact is that there will be a reign of Law in Messiah's Kingdom. "And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob, and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths; for out of Zion shall go forth the Law, and the Word of the Lord from Jerusalem." (Isa. 2:3.) And those who will not fall into line with this law will have tribulation that they may learn righteousness. "The judgments of the Lord will be abroad in the earth" (Isa. 26:9) and the people will take notice of these. They will not be dealt with as under the Covenant of Grace. The will will not be taken as instead of the deed. And they will not have the Advocate.

On the contrary, the great Mediator will, during the thousand years of the Mediatorial Kingdom, instruct and reward and bless and uplift all the willing and obedient, to the intent that all those during that reign who desire to be helped will be helped and will be ready to be turned over to the Almighty at the close of the Age. "And when all things shall be subdued under him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all." (I Cor. 15:28.) Not, therefore, until the end of that Age will any of the World, under the New Covenant arrangement, reach sonship. But if, by that time, they have been perfected as sons, and will endure the tests then given, the Father will accept them and give them the blessings of eternal life, etc., as sons. [R4729 : page 394]

A certain Scripture gives us intimation of how this will proceed. This Scripture shows us the injunctions and precepts God will put upon the world. "And this shall be the Covenant that I will make with the house of Israel, after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my Law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people." (Jer. 31:33.) He also says, "And I will give them one heart; and I will put a new spirit within you; and I will take away the stony heart out of their flesh, and will give them an heart of flesh." (Ezek. 11:19.) This brief statement implies a full restitution to all that was lost in Adam.

Adam was created perfect, but the depravity of mankind and the intensification of this in many cases have brought the world today to a condition of stoniness of heart, until the inhumanity of man toward man is appalling. The precepts of God will be gradually brought before the human mind and engraved and interwoven in the whole fibre of his being, so that man at the end of the Millennial Age will be as Adam was in the beginning-- fully in accord with every principle of righteousness and sympathetic with everything that is good and unsympathetic with everything that is evil. This condition will come to be the very fibre of human nature again and only to such as will attain this will come the blessing of eternal life.

We read that God will test all whom he will receive. We read of how Satan, at the close of the Mediatorial reign, will be loosed to test all whom God will have lifted up out of human imperfection. This will not be done to see whether or not they are perfect, because they will be perfect, but it will be to see whether or not, in their perfection, they will be loyal to God. All such as will not stand this test will be destroyed as not worthy of having the great blessings of eternal life and Divine favor!



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INIQUITOUS GOVERNMENT SUCCESSFUL
--JANUARY 22.--I KINGS 16:23-33.--

"Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people."--Proverbs 14:34.
THE Omri dynasty of Israel was a successful one according to worldly standards, but a failure from the Divine standpoint. Omri, a great general, succeeded to Israel's throne after the death of Jeroboam. He was very successful and conquered the Moabites, to the East of the Jordan, putting them under an annual tribute of the fleece of two hundred thousand sheep. He built a new Capital, the city of Samaria, and successfully outranked Jeroboam as a misleader of his people, along religious lines. According to Israel's Covenant with the Almighty there was but the one Levitical priesthood and the one holy temple of Jehovah's presence for the whole people of Israel, and it was at Jerusalem. As worldly wisdom guided Jeroboam to completely separate the ten tribes from the two tribes by establishing new places of worship and simplifying the worship and symbolizing God by a golden calf, so the same spirit of worldly wisdom suggested to Omri a still further departure from God and a still closer approach to the customs and idolatry of surrounding nations.

Omri died, or, according to the records, "Omri slept with his fathers." We are not from this declaration to draw the inference that as a wicked man he went to eternal torment and that the nature of the torment is sleep. Neither are we to think of Omri as saintly and going to heaven and to imagine that those in heaven are asleep. Neither are we to think of him as having gone to Purgatory and that the experiences there are drowsy. We must leave all such unscriptural notions respecting the dead, good and bad. We must come back to the Bible and from it learn that all who die, like St. Stephen (Acts 7:60), fall asleep to await the morning of the resurrection, when the Redeemer will call all forth from the tomb. (John 5:28,29, Rev. Ver.) Then, as Daniel declares, "Many that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake"; a few to glory and honor, the many to shame and age-lasting contempt--from which they will be obliged to purge themselves by obedience to the Divine requirements under Messiah's glorious reign of righteousness. --Dan. 12:2.

AHAB AND JEZEBEL

Ahab's name signifies, "Like his father." And surely he was! His name was appropriate. His was a reign still more successful in unrighteousness. For twenty-two years he devoted himself to the further undermining of true religion and to the introduction of the worst forms of licentious, heathen idolatry. He was greatly assisted in this course by his wife--Jezebel, the daughter of the King of the Sidonians. Her name signifies chaste; yet she used her great influence with her husband and throughout the nation for the furtherance of unchastity in connection with the orgies known as the religious rites and ceremonies, connected with the worship of Baal and of "Ashtoreth," the female divinity worshipped. In connection with this worship human lives were sacrificed, usually those of children--just as was found in Alaska when, in 1867, it came into the possession of the United States--human sacrifices were frequent--particularly in connection with the laying of a foundation for a great house.

LESSONS HERE FOR US

All civilized people are deeply interested in earthly governments and their success. We all crave social and financial prosperity. Nevertheless it is still true that prosperity is injurious in proportion as it separates the people from the Divine arrangements and the blessings which thereto attach. Only righteousness can truly exalt a nation. Every form of iniquity is injurious, however it may at the time seem contrary to this. Ours is the day of the greatest worldly prosperity this earth has ever known. But alas! it is not a day of religious prosperity. On the contrary, there never was a time when unbelief in a personal God and in the Bible as his revelation was so general amongst intelligent people. Our church edifices are becoming temples of fashion, concert and lecture halls, while the real worship which alone is pleasing to the Almighty is far removed--little thought of.

The worship of Mammon, the bowing to the golden calf, the sacrificing of lives to the acquirement of wealth, belong to our day as truly as to that of Ahab--but on a more refined scale and therefore the more deceptive and insidious. It affects the poor as well as the rich, too. The poor often are merely the unsuccessfully ambitious, hence often bitter and discontented.

Continually we find that God uses the wrath of man to praise him. The effect of the prosperity of Ahab and Jezebel was two-fold: it ensnared and degraded one class, while it aroused and separated from itself another class-- [R4730 : page 395] those who worshipped God in spirit and in truth. Such left the ten-tribe kingdom and its idolatry and identified themselves with the two-tribe kingdom of Judah and its true worship.

So it is today. The success of Mammon, the rejection of the Bible by the Higher Critics and their lordly boasts of ability to give us something better than the Word of God, and in general Mammon worship, is awakening the more saintly people of our day to separate themselves and to say in the language of Joshua, "Choose ye this day whom ye will serve; as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord."

ANTITYPICAL AHAB AND JEZEBEL

As all Christian students know, Jezebel, Ahab and Elijah were used of the Lord as types, and their experiences foreshadowed much greater things in the experience of the Church, spiritual Israel, during this Gospel Age.

Ahab typified civil power. Jezebel typified a religious system. The improper marriage of Ahab and Jezebel, contrary to the Jewish Law, typified the marriage or union of Church and State. The progress of evil under this union is portrayed in the Book of Revelation, where Jezebel is specially mentioned by name. (Rev. 2:20-23.) The Lord charged that the antitypical Jezebel, the Church system, was suffered or permitted to teach and seduce his people from the proper course of Christian living. The same Scriptures represent Elijah, who was persecuted by Jezebel, through her husband, as a type of true believers of this Age persecuted by a false Church through the arm of civil power.



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JEHOSHAPHAT'S ONE MISTAKE
--JANUARY 29.--II CHRONICLES 17:1-13.--

"Seek ye first the Kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you."--Matt. 6:33.
WHILE Ahab was king of Israel, Jehoshaphat succeeded to the throne of Judah. He had the advantage that his parents were godly people--a great advantage. As suggested in our last study, the iniquity and idolatry of Israel reacted favorably upon Judah, just as the drunkenness and profligacy of a parent sometimes reacts upon his children, who perceive his folly and learn by his mistakes. Moreover the idolatry of Israel, which drove its most saintly characters of all the tribes to Judah, enriched the latter nation in moral tone and character. This included all of the priests and Levites who were still loyal to God and to the worship which he had established.

All these things produced a healthy sentiment which the young king Jehoshaphat shared and, as the head of the nation, exemplified.

Encouraged thus, the young king began a general crusade against every idolatrous place and custom in his kingdom. As Ahab exceeded his father Omri as an evil-doer, so Jehoshaphat exceeded his father Asa as an upholder of the Divine Law. Indeed we remember that in Asa's later years he became proud and self-conscious and in a measure for a time rebellious against the Divine arrangements.

PROSPERITY IN DIVINE FAVOR

Jehoshaphat's kingdom prospered. He fortified its various boundaries, especially toward the land of Israel, Judah's nearest neighbor. Neighboring smaller nations sought Judah's favor and for it paid tribute and presents until Jehoshaphat's kingdom was very prosperous. Thus fidelity to the Lord was rewarded with prosperity. If some from this are trying to draw the lesson that all prosperous persons and nations are honorable, righteous and in Divine fellowship, they surely err. Those also err who claim that adversity, poverty, sickness are sure evidences of Divine disfavor and a sinful life.

Not only should we remember that the bad kings, Omri and Ahab, were prosperous, but we remember also that many wicked nations and iniquitous customs have prospered and are prospering today. Prosperity, therefore, is not always a sign of Divine favor. To Jehoshaphat and his kingdom, however, prosperity was a sign of favor because Judah still represented God's chosen nation in a special manner. According to God's Covenant with them they would be blessed in proportion as they maintained their loyalty to their agreement--their loyalty to God. But this promise or Covenant was not made with mankind in general, but merely with the one nation of Israel, which, at the time of our study, was specially represented by the Kingdom of Judah. If we would see that righteousness does not always bring peace and worldly prosperity, we have only to look at the Master himself and at his most faithful followers to see the contrary. Moreover this is the Master's assurance to his followers: "In the world ye shall have tribulation, but in me ye shall have peace"; "Marvel not that the world hateth you; ye know that it hated me before it hated you." "Whosoever will live godly in this present time shall suffer persecution."

In other words, the systems of rewards and punishments which justice would indicate are not now being enforced. God now arranges that his spiritual family shall walk by faith and not by sight; and to give them trials of faith he frequently permits their suffering and disadvantage in earthly interests to test their loyalty and obedience --to demonstrate them as overcomers, faithful unto death, in their adherence to principles of righteousness. To these the promise is that when found worthy they shall receive the heavenly inheritance. Then will come the world's trial time.

But when Messiah's reign shall begin, all this will be changed and every wrong act and word and thought will receive prompt punishment, and every good effort will be rewarded and encouraged. Thus the Scriptures declare, "When the judgments (righteous dealings) of the Lord are abroad in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness." The blessed opportunities of that time will belong to all mankind except the Church. The specially called class of this Age have the special blessing of hearing ears and understanding hearts and a call to the heavenly portion--the "High Calling." Thus, my dear readers, we see that our trials and difficulties, rightly appreciated and accepted, are blessings for us, because they thus work out for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory--than the world will receive. The highest rewards for the world will be restitutionary, earthly--to attain perfect manhood. Thus we see God's provision in Christ to be eternal human life for mankind in general, and eternal life on the spirit plane for the elect Church, and eternal death for those who, after experiencing to the full Divine mercy and opportunity, shall sin wilfully.

JEHOSHAPHAT'S ONE MISTAKE

Like others, this king, no doubt, made many mistakes, [R4730 : page 396] blunders, but his most important mistake was in affiliating with Ahab, king of Israel. There is a lesson here for all of God's people. "Be not unequally yoked together with unbelievers"--neither by marriage ties nor by business partnerships and close friendships. "What communion hath light with darkness?"--2 Cor. 6:14-18.

Ahab made war and invited Jehoshaphat to go with him. It was expected to be an easy conquest, but the Lord's blessing was not with it, as Jehoshaphat later learned, escaping barely with his life. But his still earlier mistake was in arranging a marriage between his son and the daughter of Ahab and Jezebel. No doubt he considered this a wise method of ultimately re-uniting the two kingdoms--but it was worldly wisdom--foolishness--contrary to the wisdom from above. The Lord's disapproval of Jehoshaphat's fellowship with Ahab was indicated. The Prophet was sent to him, saying, "Shouldst thou help the ungodly and love them that hate the Lord? Therefore wrath is upon thee from before the Lord."-- II Chron. 19:2.

God's people can readily draw a lesson from all this, without further suggestions from us.

Our Golden Text refers to the Kingdom to which spiritual Israelites are now invited. To seek it means to seek a place with the Redeemer in the glory and power of his coming Kingdom. Those who seek it may apparently lose in temporal advantages, but by faith they recognize that all things, even trials, difficulties and privations, are working together for good to their spiritual advantage, preparing them for the Kingdom.



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THREE AND A HALF YEARS WITHOUT RAIN
--FEBRUARY 5.--I. KINGS 17:1-16.--

They that seek the Lord shall not want any good thing.--Psa. 34:10.
ELIJAH the Prophet was God's messenger for reproving King Ahab, Jezebel his wife, and the ten tribes of Israel who supported them. As we have seen, wickedness and idolatry flourished for a time with national prosperity. Then there came a change, a drouth for three and a half years--a special dispensation of Divine providence--a retribution or punishment upon Israel. We do not wish [R4731 : page 396] to convey the thought that every drouth, famine, pestilence, etc., should be considered a judgment from the Almighty. The whole world is under Divine sentence or condemnation of death, and God permits cyclones, earthquakes, drouth, famine, pestilences, without sending them, except that in a general way they stand related to the present reign of sin and death, as of the curse not yet lifted.

But in the case of Israel matters were different. At Mt. Sinai Israel entered into Covenant relationship with God and he with them. The special terms of that Covenant were that God should deal with their nation differently than with others--that he would treat them as his people and protect them from the evils incidental to the curse, if they would serve and obey him. Under that compact not only were they to receive blessings if faithful, but equally they were sure to receive stripes, punishments, if they were disobedient and forsook the Lord and their share of the Covenant. The three and a half years' famine described in this study was, therefore, in Israel's case, specifically a punishment from the Lord for their sins.

This is the signification of the Lord's statement through the Prophet, "Is there evil in the city and the Lord hath not done it?" Some have mistakenly interpreted this to mean that God holds himself responsible for all the moral evils of mankind. Quite to the contrary, the Lord declares respecting his own Government that "His way is perfect." The word evil in this text is old style English, signifying any disaster or trouble or affliction. With the Israelites God wished it to be clearly understood that he was responsible, both for their blessings and for their tribulations, all of which were intended to purify them.

ELIJAH THE PROPHET

Under Divine guidance, Elijah, at the appropriate time, presented himself to King Ahab, clothed according to his custom, in exceedingly plain garments. In the name of the Lord he reproved the king for the idolatries practised in his kingdom and announced what the king doubtless considered a vain boast; namely, that there would be neither rain nor dew in the land of Israel until Elijah would command it. And the drouth came as the Prophet of the Lord predicted.

As months grew into years and the drouth continued, the king caused search to be made for Elijah, with a view to either entreating or threatening him, to the intent that the drouth might be broken. But Elijah, under the Lord's direction, secreted himself near the Brook Cherith, where the ravens brought him food morning and evening until the brook dried up and, under the Lord's direction, Elijah went elsewhere.

While this story that the ravens fed Elijah sounds mythical, it has its parallels. The raven is a wise bird. A story is told of a young man sick in prison, to whom a raven brought food. Bishop Stanley's History of Birds tells of another incident thus: "Coming into the inn yard my chaise ran over and bruised the leg of a favorite Newfoundland dog, and while we were examining the injury, Ralph, the raven, looked on also. That night the dog was tied up under the manger with my horse and the raven not only visited him, but brought him bones and attended him with particular marks of kindness."

"Nor is it a wonderful case,
The wonder is to be renewed;
And many can say, to his praise,
He sends them by ravens their food.
Thus worldlings, though ravens indeed,
Though greedy and selfish their mind,
If God has a servant to feed,
Against their own wills can be kind."

THE WIDOW OF ZAREPHATH

Divine providence guided Elijah to the home of a poor widow, to whom the drouth and continued scarcity had proved a great trial. She had a little coarse flour left, which alone stood between herself and her son and starvation, so far as she could discern. The Prophet, meeting her, asked for a drink of water and a small cake of bread. This was a severe test to the woman's faith and generosity. She explained the situation, indicating her desire to accede to the Prophet's wishes, yet loth to part with her all. Elijah replied, Fear not. Bake for yourself and for your son, but the first cake make for me and bring to me. Then he explained to her the Lord's message: "The barrel of meal shall [R4731 : page 397] not waste, neither shall the cruise of oil fail until the day that the Lord sendeth rain upon the earth." The word of the Lord was fulfilled. Miraculously the supplies were increased little by little, just as required for use.

There is a lesson for the Lord's people in this--a lesson that, even in our own extremities, we should exercise sympathy towards others in like condition or worse. The Lord loveth a cheerful giver. Those who give not, and those who give grudgingly miss, therefore, much of the Lord's blessing. We should not be foolish in our giving; but, while we have evidence that there is need, and particularly if the needy one be a child of God, we can well divide even our necessities with such. Our reward will be a realization of Divine approval and an increase in ourselves of the mind of the Lord. To such the Lord's promise is of his superabounding care. They are assured that all things shall work together for good to them, because they love God and are following in the path to which they were "called according to his purpose."

The Scriptures declare: "There is that scattereth and yet increaseth; and there is that withholdeth more than is proper and it tendeth to poverty." This widow scattered or divided her slender supply and thereby she increased it for many days, in harmony with this text. Our Golden Text, also, should not be forgotten: "They that seek the Lord shall not want any good thing"--shall not lack anything good for them. The Lord in his wisdom may not give them riches or prominence. They must trust to his wisdom, his judgment, as to what things will be for their best, their highest good.



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THE GIFTS AND FRUITS OF THE SPIRIT

"And now abideth faith, hope, love, these three, but the greatest of these is love."--I Cor. 13:13.
FAITH may be viewed from two standpoints-- belief and trust. In the Scriptural use of the word faith, we understand it to be a belief in God and the things that we have reason to recognize as being of God--God's prophecies, the promises of his Word, etc., and a heart reliance on him--and not a belief in anything. The latter would be what we would term credulity. And the person who could believe anything would be foolish; whereas, he that believes what God has said has the Wisdom that cometh from above, and is, therefore, wise from the Scriptural standpoint.

We understand that the purpose and determination of the Christian should be to have this faith largely developed, and he should obtain it from the Scriptures. Many people have faith which they believe to be of God, but which, on investigation, they find to be unscriptural and not a faith in what has come from God, in what he has expressed, but from the traditions of the "Dark Ages" and from college professors, etc., and is quite contrary to the "faith once delivered to the saints."

In this particular sense we would understand faith to represent a heart-quality of trust in the Lord--something that has been acquired through the knowledge of God-- through acquaintance with him by the various means by which he has been pleased to reveal himself. This is a faith which cannot continue to subsist or increase unless knowledge shall increase, based upon the Divine Revelation, and full acceptance of it and the coming into harmony with the Almighty, so as to be able to apply the promises and to recognize that they belong to the individual.

We would consider faith, then, as belief in God and in his promises, as personal trust in God, giving one the rest and peace of God. As to how these views of faith agree with the words of our Lord, "When the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth," and as to how they agree with the statement of the Apostle Paul in Corinthians respecting faith as a gift of the holy Spirit, we would say that in the first of these passages the rendering should be, "When the Son of man cometh, shall he find The Faith on the earth?" The implication is not that he will find no faith, but, Shall he find "The Faith (the Doctrine) once delivered unto the saints"; hence we understand our Lord's words to mean that when the Son of man cometh he will not find, save in a few, "The Faith once delivered unto the saints," but will find instead misconceptions.

And so we find that many Christian people, when talking on this subject, do not know what they are talking about. They have not "The Faith once delivered to the saints." Thus we are reminded of the statement of the Scriptures that "the inhabitants of the world have been made drunk" with the false doctrines which have perverted the Word of God. Instead of the "good tidings of great joy" they have been told bad tidings of most horrible torture. It is intimated in the Word that some will have The Faith. But the Lord implies that it will be a very small number who will possess it.

GIFTS OF THE SPIRIT WERE FOR EARLY CHURCH

Respecting the gifts of faith: At the very beginning of this Age gifts of speaking with tongues, gifts of interpreting tongues, gifts of healing, etc., were bestowed so that they might be exercised for the benefit of the people. [R4732 : page 397] It would require a great deal of faith to be able to say, as did Peter to the impotent man at the temple, "Arise and walk." One would need the "gift" in order to do this. And so with those who spoke with tongues. It would need to be a miraculous gift which would enable them to master any unknown language.

Those gifts which God chose to give were granted because the Church was in its infancy and needed them for encouragement. The gifts were given also for a witness, because the Church did not then have the Bible. The Old Testament was heard only occasionally in the synagogues of the Jews. The New Testament had not as yet been written. The early Church needed some means for instructing one another. Had it not been for these gifts there might have been frivolity, etc., among them. And so one would arise and speak in an unknown tongue; a gift of interpretation would be given to another, and he would rise and give the interpretation. These gifts were given amongst them as a sort of drawing power to cause the Lord's people to assemble themselves together. Thus was the Word of God sent out for a time through this imperfect channel.

We should not think that a higher development was indicated by the possession of these gifts, but, rather, these gifts were granted during the infancy of the Church, and we should not pray for them. The Scriptures show that either they were the gifts possessed by the Apostles or else, subsequently, they were the result of the impartation of the holy Spirit and laying on of the hands of the Apostles; as, for instance, when Philip, the deacon, sent the Apostle that he might lay hands upon the people that they might receive the gifts; evidently Philip had not the power to do this of himself. [R4732 : page 398]

THE FRUITS OF THE SPIRIT NECESSARY TO SUCCESS IN THE RACE

As to the desire for speaking with unknown tongues, the Apostle gave them a warning reproof. He said, "I would rather speak five words in the Church with my understanding--that by my voice I might teach others also--than ten thousand words in an unknown tongue." (I Cor. 14:19.) He tells them that if any man possessed the gift of speaking with tongues, let him pray that he might interpret--that he might be able to express himself intelligibly to those to whom he was speaking, rather than in dark sayings. And then he proceeds to say that this strong desire for emulation in the possession of the gifts did not of itself indicate deep consecration to God. He tells them that if they spoke with the tongues of men and of angels, it would profit them nothing, if they did not have love. The possession of an unknown tongue did not imply that a man had reached a higher attainment and relationship to God.

He says that the fruits of the Spirit are more to be desired, which are these--meekness, gentleness, patience, fortitude, self-control, long-suffering, brotherly-kindness, love. St. Peter tells us, "If ye do these things, ye shall never fall, for so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting Kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ." (2 Pet. 1:10,11.) But we might have all the gifts of the early Church and have no evidence whatever that we would be sure of a place in the Kingdom. Love excels all the other virtues, because it is the most enduring.

When we shall see and know thoroughly faith will, practically, have come to an end. And hope will be practically at an end when our hopes in our Heavenly Father's promises have reached fruition. But love had no beginning and it will have no end. God is love. Since God was without beginning, so Love was without beginning; because it is his character, his disposition; and as he endureth forever, so Love will endure forever.



[R4732 : page 398]

THE TRUE SHEPHERD AND HIS FLOCKS

"When he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice."--John 10:4.
WE understand that the sheepfold was the Law Covenant arrangement under which Israel was placed at Sinai, that they were glad to be thus folded or put into the Lord's special care, and that Moses did all that he could for them as a kind of shepherd, but was not able to give them the liberty from the Law which they needed. Various others who pretended to be shepherds came afterwards. The Lord says that all these false shepherds who came before him were thieves and robbers. They did not come in through the door. They were endeavoring to take advantage of the sheep; hence they were selfish. He who is the Good Shepherd is willing to lay down his life for the sheep. It required the true Shepherd to bring about the conditions and the relationship thus expressed. "When he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them." They needed to be led out into the green pastures. The fold is a place for rest and protection, but not a place for feeding.

So as respects the Law. The Apostle says that the Jews were shut up under the Law. Until the due time should come there was no way of escape. There was only the one door, which had not been opened, and which none of these would-be leaders could open. That door was the Door of Redemption. Our Lord, by laying down his life for the sheep, could open that door.

Having made satisfaction for the sins of his people, our Lord gained the right to be their Shepherd or Leader. When he puts them forth, he shows them the way they should walk. He is not only the Leader, but also the Shepherd to watch over and care for them. Thus he leads them through green pastures and finally will bring them to the heavenly fold. Jesus became the door of egress from the Jewish sheepfold, and there is no other egress. Any of the Jews who came out came through Christ. Any of them who did not come out through Christ are still shut up under the Law--to remain until the Mediatorial reign. Others might take advantage of the offer through Christ now, that they might have life and have it more abundantly. He is the good Shepherd. A stranger will the sheep not follow, because they know not the voice of strangers. This indicates that in the voice of the True Shepherd there is something that has the proper ring. And the sheep will not follow another having a different voice--a different sound or message.

Now is the Harvest time. The voices of the false shepherds who have temporarily bewildered some of the "sheep" are losing their influence and more are listening to the Voice of the True Shepherd, which is unlike that of any other voice, and which is unmistakable. In the sound is the chord of Justice mingled with those of Love and Wisdom and Power. All other theories and doctrines have no such power or harmonious sound as the glorious message of "good tidings" which the Father has sent us through his Son. The voice of the True Shepherd satisfies the longings of the sheep as nothing else can do.

"Send out thy light and truth, O Lord;
Let them our leaders be
To guide us to thy holy hill,
Where we shall worship thee."

The question has been suggested, In what way could we apply our Lord's statement to the Gentiles, "My sheep hear my voice and they follow me?" Our answer is that the Lord had sheep amongst the Gentiles; that is, those who were seeking to serve him. But at that time he had not received anyone from amongst the Gentiles--the middle wall of partition was still standing. But subsequently they had the opportunity of hearing his voice and following him, the middle wall of partition then being broken down. A little later than when he used the above words he said: "Other sheep have I; these also I must bring and there shall be one fold and one Shepherd." While this may be particularly applicable to the sheep of the next Age, it may not be amiss to apply it now to those who are received from amongst the Gentiles. In the next Age he will receive some from the natural house of Israel and some from the Gentiles. At the present time he is receiving some from the natural house and some from the Gentiles. During the next Age there will be but one fold and one Shepherd; and all the sheep will be brought into full harmony with God.

To carry out the thought of Revelation 7, and viewing the number of the Lord's people of the "little flock" as one hundred and forty-four thousand, this offer being originally made to the twelve tribes of natural Israel, [R4732 : page 399] others subsequently were permitted to take the places of those who were first called or first recognized as sheep, and who proved unworthy.

When Christ said, "All that ever came before me were thieves and robbers," we understand that these to whom our Lord thus referred were those who attempted fraudulently to palm themselves off on the Jewish people as their leaders. These are particularly referred to by Gamaliel in his address to the Sanhedrin, when he said to them, "Ye men of Israel, take heed to yourselves what ye intend to do as touching these men. For before these days rose up Theudas, boasting himself to be somebody; to whom a number of men, about four hundred, joined themselves; who was slain; and all, as many as obeyed him, were scattered, and brought to naught....And now I say unto you, Refrain from these men, and let them alone; for if this counsel or this work be of men, it will come to naught."--Acts 5:35-38.



page 399

SOME INTERESTING LETTERS

DEAR BRETHREN:--

I take this opportunity to write you a brief letter re advertising for public meetings addressed by traveling brethren sent out by the Society.

During the past two years such meetings have been much better attended than formerly. Am sure that one of the principal causes of increased attendance is the more extensive and intelligent advertising carried on during that period by the brethren at many appointments. They have been doing remarkably well, and give evidence of increasing efficiency.

We are convinced that the advertising methods recommended by the Society are excellent--the very best, indeed-- viz., PEOPLES PULPITS, distributed from door to door, window cards and brief announcements in the newspapers.

We have noticed that whenever only newspaper advertisements have been used, the attendance has been less than when the other methods also have been employed. Indeed, my observation has led me to conclude that well-placed window-cards are more effective than newspaper ads., particularly in large towns and cities.

Of course, to engage a good room, and to advertise thoroughly involves the expenditure of some money and time. But what a glorious cause we are serving and what a blessed privilege it is to engage in such wonderful service.

You will be pleased, I am sure, to know that the friends, generally, are taking hold of this matter with considerable zeal and intelligence. But, while this is true, some may not fully realize how good the Society's advertising methods are, particularly the PULPITS and window-cards.

Yours in the interest of the blessed cause we all love so dearly,
FRANK DRAPER.


DEARLY BELOVED BRETHREN:--

When we received notice of Pilgrim visit and the suggestion as to the method of advertising for a public meeting, we decided to do as nearly as we could according to those suggestions.

Personally, I was very hopeful and confident that the place of the gathering would be full. Some of the brethren were not so hopeful. However, heretofore usually we had only a small attendance, without any favorable results so far as we have perceived. We were inclined to feel disappointed, but each time hoped for better results when we would put forth efforts afresh.

Well, this time the hall was crowded and many were unable to get in. We also have found some who have become interested since this effort.

We, of course, do not look for numbers, but how glad we are that some come to see to some extent the length and breadth and height and depth of God's great plan of salvation.

We realize that the time is drawing nigh when we shall not be able to work any more, and we desire to do what we can while it is called today. Our hearts are filled with pity for those who oppose the Harvest message. Praise the Lord for his goodness.

Your brother in the Faith once delivered to the saints,
S. J. DE GROOT.


DEAR PASTOR:--

Please find enclosed $5 to be applied to "Good Hopes." This was collected in a peculiar manner. We have a little bank hung up in our home. A great many of the dear friends frequent our home and when any of us say anything we ought not to or complain about anything we are fined five cents, which goes in the bank. This amount is the proceeds so far. Needless to say we are all getting more control of our tongues. God bless you.

Your brother and sister in Christ,
C. E. HEARD.


DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:--

I have been waiting for your return from England to express to you my appreciation of my visit at Bethel Home. My stay there was both pleasant and profitable. Because I understand the situation and conditions there better than before, my interest is increased, my sympathy is more substantial, my love is enlivened for you and your earnest co-laborers in the continual service there. I can now pray for the Bethel family with spirit and understanding. Surely you are all laying down your lives for the brethren--to supply sustenance for the spiritual sheep.

Considerable was crowded into the few weeks I was there --a wedding, a public meeting at Brooklyn Academy of Music, a Jewish meeting in New York Hippodrome, your sailing for England, etc., besides the regular routine of Chapel services, table-talks and work at Tabernacle. The last mentioned I particularly appreciated, and, so far as I know, the friends there survived my stay, so no harm was done. I thank you heartily for your hospitality and kindness, and desire to be remembered to the dear family there.

The morning worship was a delight to me. I think of it every day as I read the Manna and "the Vow" and sometimes sing the hymn. There is not always time for the hymn--at least in the morning.

A few days ago I was amazed to learn that some of the "natives" here have been accrediting me with the Brooklyn Tabernacle Bible Studies appearing in one of our local papers. I modestly disclaimed the honor, but my denial seemed to be held in doubt, at first, until I explained the matter quite fully.

My daughter Ruth is still in Iowa doing colporteur work. The work there has been considerably retarded by delays in getting books to deliver. Their expenses have thus been increased also. But she loves the work. Once, after a delivery, she wrote she had never been so tired in all her life--and never so happy, because the Lord had permitted her to do something not easy in his service. I am sure she has been homesick sometimes, but she has not complained and is very thankful for the opportunity she has had.

I wish there were more opportunities for service with fewer handicaps. The winters here are hard for me, and I have wondered if I could arrange to do colporteur work in January and February some place in the South. I wish I knew some of the Southern friends to whom I could write concerning it.

The past three months have been crowded full of blessings. I am grateful for them all.

Yours in our dear Redeemer,
HATTIE O. HENDERSON.


MY DEAR SIR:--

I have received the Bible Studies, No. 1, and feel that as a Christian I am just beginning to live.

I have studied the Bible for thirty years and have been blind, as my teachers and Pastors have been blind. Ministers are not giving their people these things and they are starving, spiritually. I thank so much some one who placed on my porch a copy of the PEOPLES PULPIT last summer.

I cannot think that I or mine are among the "Elect," but I am going to see that every one I can reach shall know about these precious truths.

My little daughter, who has been wrongly taught in Sunday School and at home, said, when I read aloud about the future of the heathen, "O! I am so glad they will have an opportunity."

And now I will write on separate sheet an order for more good things to pass along. God bless you again for the good, glad news you are spreading over the world.

Sincerely,
MRS. L. K. THOMPSON.--Minn.



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