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

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

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

VOL. XXXVIAPRIL 1No. 7

A. D. 1915--A.M. 6043


CONTENTS

Views From The Watch Tower99
Religious Influences and the War99
World's Debts Never to Be Paid100
Bible Students and the Future101
Sell the Philippines to Japan101
World's Peace Endangered101
Some Radical Suggestions101
Jewish Palestine Emigration102
Why the World Has Not Restitution103
Victories Over Modern Giants104
The Faith of One Persecuted105
A Friend in Need--A Friend Indeed106
Seedtime and Harvest of Character108
Thought the Beginning of Character108
"Choose Ye This Day Whom Ye Will Serve"109
A Worthy Example Set109
The Scripturally "Wicked"110
Interesting Letters110
Entered Upon Her Last Test111
Echoes Sentiments of Many Prisoners111

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

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

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THIS JOURNAL AND ITS SACRED MISSION

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 AND TRACT SOCIETY
CHARLES T. RUSSELL, PRESIDENT
"BROOKLYN TABERNACLE," 13-17 HICKS ST.,
BROOKLYN, N.Y., U.S.A.

Foreign Agencies:--British Branch: LONDON TABERNACLE, Lancaster Gate, London, W. German Branch: Unterdorner Str., 76, Barmen. Australasian Branch: Flinders Building, Flinders St., Melbourne. Please address the SOCIETY in every case.


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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.



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[R5665 : page 98]

COLPORTEUR SUCCESS IN GOOD TERRITORY

The European War and the peculiar financial conditions resulting everywhere are very favorable to our Colporteurs. They find the ears of the public much more often than ever before for the explanations of the present "distress of nations with perplexities," and the outcome, which the Bible alone tells. The Lord is blessing the Colporteur work wonderfully, as He has done from the beginning. The interested can now be sold the entire set of six volumes with a year's subscription to THE WATCH TOWER, for $2.65 almost as easily as previously one volume could be sold--provided the purchaser has money; otherwise he may be able to purchase only one volume. The success of the Colporteurs in introducing the six volumes with THE WATCH TOWER has done much to increase our WATCH TOWER subscription list. Every arrival of THE WATCH TOWER is a fresh reminder in respect to the books, which are valueless unless read.

Colporteur territory has divided itself up into three divisions. It is poor where business is closed down or where crops have been a failure during the past year. Colporteurs should not attempt to continue in such territory, but should inquire for something better. Medium territory would be that in which the Colporteur, with energy and perseverance, can make ends meet. Any having this territory should use it and not attempt to find the best, as thereby he might make a mistake. "Be content with such things as ye have," where they are at all endurable. Good territory is very scarce. It includes the rice and sugar countries adjacent to New Orleans, Louisiana and Mississippi. It includes also territory contiguous to establishments manufacturing fire-arms, also the districts where wheat and corn crops were good last year. This includes portions of Kansas, Nebraska, Northern Missouri, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, etc. While Colporteurs in medium territories are advised to stay where they are, those in bad territories, not able to make expenses, are advised to seek new fields. Address the WATCH TOWER SOCIETY--Colporteur Department.


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PUBLIC MEETINGS AND CONVENTIONS

Our recent suggestions seem to have been misunderstood. It is not our thought that it is desirable to have Conventions with a view to interesting the public. Conventions are merely for the interested. This should never be lost sight of. The Conventions this year should not be held in large auditoriums, but in such as would reasonably accommodate the interested. Our thought is the holding of little Conventions all over the country, at which friends within a radius of 100 miles could gather for mutual encouragement and refreshment, depending on their own speakers and those of the vicinity, or a Pilgrim appointed to assist.

The thought is to hold these little Conventions in many cities, in conjunction, however, with one large public meeting. For this public meeting only the best Auditorium should be engaged. The little Conventions might preferably close with the Editor's visit and a discourse for the interested on the same day that he would give the public address. All attempts to get up Convention programs, use large halls, and try to get the public in, we advise against. Do nothing of the kind. And if the Class arranging for the public meeting has a good hall, not above the second floor, clean, desirable, they should see Brother Russell about announcing a "Follow up" Meeting for the Sunday following the meeting which he addresses; but this would be wise only under the conditions named and if a Brother capable of giving a good address can be arranged for.

Classes arranging for public meetings by Brother Russell and desirous of having little meetings with the friends of the vicinity in advance, should send invitations to the near-by Classes, advising them of the time, place and other arrangements. In many cases a One-Day Convention will be all that will be possible or desirable. For instance, if Brother Russell's meeting for the public is at night, he may be relied upon for a secondary meeting for the interested. The remainder of the time might be utilized for testimony meetings and addresses by other brethren.

Already this plan has worked excellently in about twenty cities. The Convention Tour to San Francisco and the return journey will include about as many more. Later on, should opportunity offer, Brother Russell will be available for other circuits of about a week or ten days, visiting one city each day and speaking twice. Requests for such visits should be addressed to the Society, care Pilgrim Department.



[R5657 : page 99]

VIEWS FROM THE WATCH TOWER

INFORMATION from Great Britain describes matters there as prosperous. Business flourishes, supported mainly by the orders for war materials for the Government, building of war vessels, etc. The streets have much the ordinary appearance, except that more black is worn by the women, as indicative of mourning, and more military uniform is to be seen.

Newspaper reports respecting the sinking of vessels by German submarines might give the impression that Great Britain is cut off from communication with the outer world and that few ships enter and leave her ports. Such, however, is not the case. Approximately three thousand vessels entered and left British ports last month, while only about four sustained injury from the German submarines. The good business condition and rise in the price of food are leading to labor troubles, strikes for shorter hours and better wages. The demands are being met very conservatively. Wages of British mechanics are still much below the American level.

Conditions in Russia, except in the war zone, are said to be good. The Government, which has for years had control of the liquor traffic, has entirely suppressed it. The effect upon the Russian people is said to be excellent, tending toward their enlightenment of mind and tending also, with the war demands for labor, toward their financial prosperity.

That part of France, which is outside of the war-zone, seems to be fairly prosperous also.

Germany, according to all accounts, is not nearly as badly off as we might suppose from press reports. The business of the country goes on with remarkable regularity, notwithstanding the war; nevertheless, lacking an outlet for her manufactures, German activities are mainly concerned with Government orders for war materials and home necessities. The food, being under Governmental control, is limited, but is said to be sufficient for the absolute needs of the people. All food supplies are being conserved, as in the case of a besieged [R5658 : page 99] city. Clocks have been set forward one hour to favor earlier rising and earlier retiring, thus effecting the saving of petroleum.

Great suffering and distress is reported from the war-zone-- Belgium, Northern France, Western Russia, Eastern Germany and the Carpathian and Balkan Mountains. These war-swept districts have suffered terribly-- the fortunes of war sometimes sweeping one way, sometimes the other, but always with terrible severity, not only as respects the soldiers, but also the inhabitants of the districts. Conditions in Servia are said to be terrible also.

The Dardanelles, controlled by Turkey, constitute a new war area. Great Britain has long upheld the Turkish Government and hindered Russia from gaining access to the Mediterranean Sea and the world by water. Russia long ago would have devoured Turkey at great cost; for Constantinople would have given her one of the most important sea-ports in the world. Now England and France must help their ally, Russia. Since they cannot utilize Constantinople themselves, they are anxious that Russia shall not have it. They will propose that the Dardanelles be maintained a free waterway, like the Suez Canal and the Panama Canal. Whether or not this will satisfy Russia is doubtful; and a quarrel amongst the Allies may result. If a quarrel seem unavoidable, it may be determined that the Dardanelles are impregnable and Turkey be allowed to hold on to her possession.

Meantime the Allies are seeking for further assistance to blockade thoroughly and starve out Germany. To this end Italy and Greece are being urged to join in the war, the inducement being that in the settlement Italy shall receive certain Austrian Provinces and Greece be allowed to take over a large share of Turkey's domain --to keep Russia out. Selfishness, statecraft, fear of each other and ambition for world-power are thus seen to be the moving principles, so far as the world is concerned in the present war. Switzerland, Holland and Scandinavia are in fear and know not what to do. The interests of the great belligerents may force war upon them, although they are striving to the best of their ability to remain neutral.

RELIGIOUS INFLUENCES AND THE WAR

At first, the influence of the war upon the people of Europe was terrifying. In their distress they were inclined to become more religious. With the progress of the war this spirit of fear and looking to the Lord for help is passing away, giving place to colder sentiments and greater self-confidence. War is becoming the business of life to those engaged in it. Each of the nations involved sees matters from its own viewpoint. Each honestly believes that it is right. Each has the courage of its convictions and is ready to die for them.

The Germans hold that the Allies, jealous of their frugality and prosperity and thoroughness, have long [R5658 : page 100] been preparing to crush them, to annihilate them. They claim that if they had waited until the French army had been mobilized on their western frontier, and the Russian army on their eastern frontier it would have been too late for Germany to successfully defend herself; that it was necessary for her to take the steps she did take and to take them with the promptness with which she took them, in order to strike first at France and then at Russia, whose soldiers represented double the number of her own.

The Germans feel a special bitterness toward the British, believing that they are at the bottom of the Alliance and its schemes for the destruction of Germany. The Kaiser is evidently sincere in the thought that he and his people are God's ordained agencies for the propagation of system, law, economy and prosperity throughout the world. The Germans believe their cause to be just and that surely they will succeed. It is freely declared by them that, should they not succeed, they would altogether doubt the existence of God.

The Allies, also, feel that God is for them. Germany's preparation of a great army, they claim, was not in self-defense and to protect her life, but for aggressive warfare upon her neighbors. They claim that Germany stands for militarism and that its successful military rule throughout the world, the rule of force, would be much more injurious than the rule of naval force. Whatever the leaders think and know as respects motives for the war, and whatever their conclusions respecting how it must end in the annihilation of Germany, the public undoubtedly believe that the cause of the Allies is every way just and must surely have God's favor and blessing. The Russians, we are told, are content that they are serving God while obeying the commands of the "Little Father," the Czar. They are content to die. They refer to going to the front and into the tomb as "Off for America." In other words, having a glimmering of a future life and refusing to take the doctrine of eternal torture seriously, they conclude that dying is like setting sail for an unseen country.

The French soldiers are taking the matter of warfare as light-heartedly as possible--much as one might take to a hunting expedition where the chances were recognized to be rather doubtful.

The great generals of the war are saying freely that the war is only beginning; that the Winter time has interfered with operations and that as soon as the Spring floods are past, the bitterest warfare ever yet known to the world may be expected.

Meantime, Japan finds the present a favorable opportunity for gaining the mastery of the yellow race--of mastering China. Her Allies, of course, would not approve of this course, but Japan well knows that they are powerless to interfere. As to the objections of the United States, they will not be worthy of consideration; for the distance across the Pacific is so great and the Japanese navy is more than a match for what United States war vessels could be spared for Far Eastern waters. It would, indeed, tickle Japanese pride to have a conflict with the United States navy in Eastern waters, where they would be so far from fuel and other supplies as to be defeated. It would put Japan in the front rank of "Christian Nations" and the Philippines could be her reward. The Allies probably would be pleased to see the United States humiliated and sharer with them in the weakening influences of the present warfare. Undoubtedly Germany also would be glad to see the United States involved in war, as it would hinder further supplies of war materials going to the Allies. If the United States shall keep clear of entanglement under all these conditions it will be marvelous, almost indicating a Divine supervision of its affairs.

"MEN'S HEARTS FAILING THEM FOR FEAR"

As it is, the United States, indeed all the countries of America, North and South, and all the world except the warring nations, are experiencing most peculiar conditions because of the financial disruption created by the war. Not only Canada, but also Central and South America, China, Australasia and India, have been financed in the past by the nations now at war; especially by Great Britain. Their bank balances and loans are all interfered with by the war and by the necessity on the part of the warring nations of using their capital at home. The United States is not financially powerful enough to meet the conditions and supply money to the remainder of the world, previously dependent on Europe. Indeed stocks and bonds to the amount of five thousand millions of dollars are held in Europe against American improvements, etc. As the war progresses and Europeans need money, they may be expected to sell these American securities in American Exchanges. We have not the money to thus pay our unmatured obligations. Already our banks are full to overflowing with stocks and bonds--some excellent, some medium value, some worthless. Consequently gold will probably go to a premium in the United States as it is already at a premium in Canada. This will bring great distress everywhere, in connection with the liquidation of maturing obligations, bonds, mortgages, etc. No wonder financiers are perplexed--"men's hearts failing them for fear and for looking forward to those things coming on the earth"!--Luke 21:26.

THE WORLD'S DEBTS NEVER TO BE PAID

The London Economist roughly estimates the debts of the warring nations at the close of February as follows, in millions of Pounds Sterling. For a rough estimate in dollars, multiply by five:

                                 Debt      Loss of   Total
     (Expressed in Millions)   Old   New   Revenue    Debt
                                L.    L.      L.        L.
     Great Britain..........   661   312     nil       973
     France................. 1,315   363      50     1,728
     Russia.................   890   520      50     1,460
     Germany................   240   520      50       810
     Austria-Hungary........   490   363      50       903
     Servia.................    26    26       4        56
     Belgium................   148    26      ..       174

The article says: "In the case of the five leading belligerents, we take the National Debt before the war, and add our estimate of the war expenditure, and also an estimate of the loss of ordinary revenue, which must, of course, be added to the debt. The figures for Servia and Belgium are guesswork, and may be very wide of the mark. The figures for the belligerents will, we fear, prove well within the mark. Both the old and the new debts are a mortgage on the future industry of Europe. A population which will have lost a large percentage of its best workers will have to find much larger annual [R5659 : page 100] sums than ever before in interest. In case of failure the State will have to pass into the hands of the receiver, and in its ruin great commercial and financial houses will be involved. We are all slaughtering one another's customers, and every week of international warfare spreads destruction among the fortunes of individuals. There is even a sense in which one may say the greater the success the greater the embarrassment. The debt of the German Empire, like the German Empire itself, is a new creation. The State debts of Prussia, Bavaria, Saxony, etc., are, separate and together, [R5659 : page 101] much larger. Austria-Hungary, again, is not a unity like France. Suppose either Germany or Austria become dismembered by external force, or exploded by revolution, what becomes of their national or Imperial debts, or of the indemnities which the Allies might hope to exact? The more one looks into the financial and political future of Europe after the war the darker and more obscure do its problems appear. But that is all the more reason why independent men with knowledge and penetration and foresight should exercise their minds upon the political economy of this war. Never has there been such a collision of forces, never so much destruction in so short a time. Never has it been so difficult or so necessary to measure the calamity, to count the costs, to foresee and provide against the consequences to human society. Philanthropists profess to hope that the peace settlement will bring with it a great international reduction of armies and armaments, which will enable the nations to support their new war debt, and so to avoid the bankruptcy court. No doubt the fear of bankruptcy will count for something; otherwise the peace settlement might be expected to breed another series of preparations for another series of wars. But those who know the forces which really control the diplomacy of Europe see no Utopias. The outlook is for bloody revolutions and fierce wars between labor and capital, or between the masses and the governing classes of Continental Europe."

BIBLE STUDENTS AND THE FUTURE

In all the Continental Armies our Brethren, known as Bible Students, are to be found--not willingly, but by conscription. However opposed to the taking of life, they are subject to the powers that be in everything that does not conflict with conscience. Before the war we recommended to the Brethren that in the event of hostilities they should, so far as possible, if drafted, request positions in the hospital service or in the supplies department, where they could serve the Government efficiently; whereas, if they were ordered to the firing line, they would not be obliged to shoot to kill. We have reasons for believing that these suggestions are being followed and that meantime the Brethren are using the opportunities for proclaiming to their companions in military service the blessed message of the soon-to-be-established Kingdom of Christ, for the blessing of all the families of the earth.

We have exhorted the brethren to strict neutrality so far as the combatants are concerned, whatever might be their natural inclination through accident of birth or association. To Bible Students none of the belligerent nations are wholly in the right, and none of them entirely to blame. Let us more and more seek to take the Bible view of the great Armageddon, of which we are now having the prelude. It is the outgrowth of our civilization, developing in the soil of selfishness. We are seeing fruits which have been ripening for forty years.

We are never for a moment to forget that if the nations were Christian nations, as some of us once supposed, they would be bearing the fruits of the Spirit-- meekness, gentleness, patience, kindness, love. How great the mistake! Christendom--Christ's Kingdom--has not yet been established. It awaits the Lord's time and the manifestation of His power and great glory in its establishment. These are kingdoms of this world, actuated by the principles of selfishness and deceived by Satan, "the god of this world."

The Battle of Armageddon, to which this war is leading, will be a great contest between right and wrong, and will signify the complete and everlasting overthrow of the wrong, and the permanent establishment of Messiah's righteous Kingdom for the blessing of the world. All these things are probably easier to be seen from this side of the ocean than by the dear friends who are nearer to, and more directly influenced by, the war and their national, personal interests. Nevertheless, it is important that we all keep clearly before our minds that this is not the war of the Church, but the war of the world with carnal weapons; and that our sympathies are broad enough to cover all engaged in the dreadful strife, as our hope is broad enough and deep enough to include all in the great blessings which our Master and His Millennial Kingdom are about to bring to the world.

Meantime, another danger to the Lord's consecrated people lies along the lines of worldly-mindedness--neglecting the things of the Kingdom in favor of the things of this present life. Our Adversary is still alert. We, also, must be alert as children of the Light, children of the Day, soldiers of the Cross. There never was a better opportunity than now for lifting high the royal banner of our Redeemer. More people have ears to hear and sharper ears to hear than ever before. Thousands are anxious for the Message which we have to give them and which they do not find elsewhere--the Message of Hope, the Message which explains that the present reign of evil, and the past six thousand years of the reign of sin and death, have reached their culmination, and how and why they are about to be brought to an end by the great Redeemer, in fulfilment of our Heavenly Father's glorious plans which He purposed in Himself from before the foundation of the world.

SELL THE PHILIPPINES TO JAPAN

Two years ago, on our return from the Orient, we sent the below letter of suggestion to the Government with copies of it to the newspapers, some of which published the letter, which read as follows:-- Brooklyn, May 26, 1913. Honorable Wm. J. Bryan,

Secretary of State, U.S.A.

Dear Sir:--I am addressing you, and through you the Honorable President of this Nation, and the Honorable Members of its Congress, upon a subject which I believe to be of prime importance to our Nation and to the world. I would have preferred to make this communication a private one, but believe that its object will be much better served if it be known at home and abroad that the suggestion comes from a native citizen, a minister and ambassador of Christ, rather than if the same suggestion were to emanate from some Official of our Government or from a politician.

THE WORLD'S PEACE ENDANGERED

A year ago I visited Japan and observed the congested conditions there prevailing, and learned that her population is increasing very rapidly, while every foot of arable land is under "intense" cultivation. Japan's need for room for her overflow population has already led her to grasp Korea, and it is no secret that she longs for possession of the Philippine Islands, and would be glad of a reasonable pretext for taking possession of them. Many broad-minded Americans have suggested that the United States has no desire to acquire colonies in an imperial sense, and that, therefore, the Philippine Islands should be surrendered to the Filipinos. The only objection urged against this move is that the Filipinos are not as yet sufficiently advanced in civilization to properly govern themselves. And those most intimate with the situation have not the slightest doubt that if the United States withdrew from the Philippines, the Japanese Government would immediately take control, and shortly the Philippine Islands would be inundated with Japanese--undoubtedly much to their benefit, as the latter people are more thrifty and prudent and energetic than the Filipinos.

SOME RADICAL SUGGESTIONS

I suggest that the United States Government select from amongst the Philippine Islands one island suitable as a naval [R5659 : page 102] base, and tender to Japan the opportunity to take over the Philippine Islands at precisely the same they have cost the United States. This would give our neighbors of the Far East exactly what they want, at no price at all compared with the cost of war. Additionally, it would make them our friends, and surely all Americans desire a world-wide friendship with all nations. I advise that this step be taken speedily, because there is a "jingo" party in Japan bent upon the acquirement of the Philippines, which party will always be ready to take advantage of such trifles as the California Alien Law to incite hatred against the United States and to force their Government, against its judgment, to seize the Philippines.

It is human nature for the Japanese to want those Islands --to feel that they need them. It is practical common sense to say that they can take them whenever they are ready. The United States could not retake the Philippines except at the expense of many lives and thousands of millions of dollars-- if at all.

Our Japanese neighbors, flushed with their victory over the Russian Navy, and courageous and proud-spirited, anyway, realize fully their ability to capture the Philippines and probably to hold them; but they do not realize that a war with America would be a very different one from that with Russia--that American pride and valor would spend thousands [R5660 : page 102] of lives and thousands of millions of dollars rather than surrender to Japan. Pride, courage, self-esteem, confidence, on both sides are the real dangers. Surely wisdom should dictate to both Nations that, in the interest of peace, cause for friction should be as far as possible eliminated. I believe that no more fair, no more just, no more honorable method for adjudicating this matter can be found than that we are suggesting--the sale of the Islands at cost to the Japanese.

Japan would give the Filipinos a splendid government-- better, I believe, than would any other nation under the sun except our own Government. No one can visit the Philippines without feeling pride for what America has done for that people--and done in so unselfish and noble a manner, as an elder brother amongst the nations helping a younger brother. Under no circumstances would I favor turning the Philippines over to the domination of a barbaric people. The Japanese are not barbarians, but highly civilized.

My discourse in Washington on the 25th, "Peace Desirable, War a Necessity," was evidently misunderstood by some of my peace friends. While I claimed that nations have never been able to avoid war, and that they never will be able to wholly avoid it until the inauguration of Messiah's Kingdom, nevertheless I believe that all lovers of peace should unite their hearts and voices and pens and every energy in removing all unnecessary friction between nations, by doing in advance those things which would make for peace, and by promoting them. For instance, if the move I am suggesting were delayed until the Japanese had made an attack upon the Philippines, it would be too late. American pride would never consent to an overture of sale under stress; nor would the Japanese probably be willing to purchase then. NOW seems to be the psychological moment, and, as stated at first, it seems best that these suggestions should come from an ambassador of Christ, rather than from a politician of any party, so that partisan feeling may not interfere, but our nation as a whole approve and uphold and carry speedily forward this peace-promoting measure. I call for its endorsement by peace societies and all who believe that war should be only a last resort.
Faithfully yours,

A servant of the Lord Jesus Christ,
(Signed) C. T. RUSSELL.


JEWISH PALESTINE EMIGRATION

The following is a synopsis of an article which appeared in the Algemeen Handelsblad of March 6, 1915, published in Amsterdam:

"In Jewish circles the Jewish question is believed to be nearing a crisis. Poland, one of the countries suffering most from the present war, has millions of Jewish citizens. They are mainly artisans and commissionmen, and have with many others practically lost their all. While others have the hope of recuperating after the war is over, the Jews see none because of a strong Polish boycott of Jews. Already articles appear in the Russian press and in the English press, as Russia's ally, expressing the wish that Jews be obliged to emigrate from Poland after the war.

"Since Palestine has become part of the war-territory, the antagonism in the Jewish world against Zionism is disappearing, all seeming to be actuated by greater love for the Land. Conditions in Palestine are not what the news items, mainly from English sources, would cause one to think. The Turk is more favorable to the Jewish inhabitants than to those of other nationalities. When a local official tried to hinder the Zionists he was sharply reprimanded from Constantinople. The German, Italian and especially the United States representatives have contributed a great deal to bring about the good will of the Turk for the Jews. On Dec. 17 the Jaffa officials had 600 Russian Jews transported to Egypt, but the same day the United States representative, Mr. Morgenthau, brought influence to bear on Constantinople which caused the transportation of Jews, citizens of countries at war with Turkey, to be stopped; and now they are permitted to remain, although watched by the authorities. It seems now that even the Anglo-Palestine Company at Jaffa, the Zionist Bank, will be allowed to continue its business. Economically Palestine is suffering. Although the model-farms and the reforesting enterprises are still going on as usual, the individual owners of orange groves and vineyards are suffering on account of the cessation of export trade. Besides, there is practically no import, causing unemployment. But those who are well informed are hopeful for the future, the present need being money.

"America has in a comparatively short period received one million Jews from other countries. Representative Morgenthau is helping the members of his race in Palestine in working out the policy of the United States Government.

"All of the interest manifested at present by the prominent Jewish American financiers is largely selfish. Not only so in the United States, but in all of Western Europe as well. A sudden extensive emigration of Polish and Russian Jews would seriously disturb the economical structure in those countries. And Jews and Gentiles are concerned over the possible catastrophe of emigration of large numbers of Jews from Poland and Russia. In Jewish circles they are earnestly preparing to organize the emigration. This has been the desire of a few for some years, but now that the danger of losing their own well-established positions comes home to them, it is becoming the desire of the majority of influential Jews, and union on that point is in sight. Regulating emigration will probably include diversion of the already over-population of Jews in New York City.

"The Zionists in the Netherlands are at work with might and main to bring together a Palestine fund--a drop in the bucket; but American Jews also are working along this line and the hope is entertained that the non-nationalists among the Jews will join in, understanding the necessity and urgency of the case."


***

"God's ways are equal: storm or calm,
Seasons of peril and of rest,
The hurtling dart, the healing balm,
Are all appointed as is best.
In judgments oft misunderstood,
In ways mysterious and obscure,
He brings from evil, lasting good,
And makes the final gladness sure.
While Justice takes its course with strength,
Love bids our faith and hope increase:
He'll give the chastened world at length
His afterward of Peace."



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WHY THE WORLD HAS NOT RECEIVED RESTITUTION

ACCORDING to the Bible presentation our Lord died for the sins of the whole world when He gave His life as an offset for Father Adam's life, which had been forfeited because of sin. The death of our Savior will be sufficient for the whole world, because the whole world are sharers in Adam's penalty by heredity. The merit of Christ's death, sufficient for the sins of Adam and for the sins of the whole world, has not yet been applied, or paid over, either for Adam or for the world. It has merely been put into the Father's hands, without application for anybody.

The Scriptures show us for what purpose the application is to be made; namely, that after our Lord's Second coming and the setting up of His Kingdom He will apply, for the full satisfaction and requirements of Divine Justice, the entire merit of His sacrifice on behalf of Adam and his race. The full penalty of original sin will thus be paid, the race of Adam will be released from that condemnation, and forthwith the work of Restitution will proceed. Meantime, while waiting for the application of the blood to the world, the Father imputes that merit of Christ on behalf of the Church.

CHRIST'S MERIT IMPUTED TO THE CHURCH

In thinking of this subject, this word impute should be considered. To impute is not to give. To give Christ's merit would mean to make it applicable to Adam and all the race. Jesus is not ready yet to give it to Adam and all the race; for to release Adam and his race just now from the present conditions would not be the best plan.

In commercial usage the word imputation has a similar thought of endorsement. If a man endorses a note for a thousand dollars, he does not give even one penny, but he imputes the value of the money. This transaction illustrates the work of imputing merit to the Church. The Church is not qualified to enter into a sacrifice with God. God is unwilling to receive as a sacrifice anything that is imperfect. But Jesus, having a credit in the hands of God, imputes a share of that merit to those who present themselves in consecration. On the strength of that merit, He becomes a surety, or guarantor, to those who wish to become His disciples. No more than this would be necessary; for their consecration is to sacrifice, and they need merely to sacrifice what they have. Since our Lord imputes of His merit to the Church, which offsets what they have not, whatever they are lacking by reason of heredity, when they shall have finished their contract this merit will be released, just as when the note is paid, the endorser is free. [R5661 : page 103]

THE RELEASE OF THAT MERIT

Our Lord Jesus becomes the Guarantor, or Endorser, or Imputer, of His merit to all who make a consecration to God. This includes not only the Little Flock, but also the Great Company, who will be partly faithful and who will need this imputation to complete their Covenant; it also includes those who later become wilfully unfaithful and will go into the Second Death. When all these things shall have been accomplished, then this merit of Christ, having been fully released from all this imputation, will be applied in full measure to the sealing of the New Covenant, of which Christ is the Mediator. Then His Kingdom will be the Mediatorial Government for the blessing and uplift of the world.

The proposition made to the followers of Christ is that they will lay down their human lives sacrificially, just as Jesus did His--in whatever way God's providence may mark out for them. But those who present themselves to God in consecration are members of the sinner race of Adam. God properly declines to deal with these repentant sinners thus. He says, Your lives are already under condemnation; already they are three-fourths gone; in any event, you could not present more than one-fourth of the sacrifice that is absolutely required. However, God's Plan has provided that Jesus can become Surety for those who desire to become His footstep followers in sacrifice. On His account their sacrifices are accepted as a part of His sacrifice, that they may also share in His glory.

PHILOSOPHY OF JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH

The philosophy of the matter is this: Jesus already has in the Heavenly Father's hands--that is in the hands of Justice--a meritorious credit to the value of His human life, which He laid down sacrificially in obedience to the Divine wish. That sacrifice, sufficient for Adam and every member of his family, is waiting in God's hands to be applied in due time--at the time appointed for the beginning of Christ's Millennial Reign for the blessing, uplifting, Restitution, of the world. A certain portion of that blessing or merit of Christ is due to come to each member of Adam's race in Restitution. A certain portion, therefore, would in due time apply to those of Adam's children who, having now forsaken sin, become members of Christ by consecrating to death.

As the Advocate for those who desire to become His followers, Jesus appropriates, or imputes, to them merit which is to His credit in God's account. That imputation is equivalent to the Restitution blessing which otherwise they would have received during the Millennium. This imputed merit, equal to all their imperfection, is, therefore, said to justify these from all sin, from all condemnation. Thus justified by faith these are accepted by God, and their sacrifices accepted of Him as part and parcel of their Redeemer's sacrifice.

Not until all the merit of Christ thus imputed to the various persons who have made consecration during this Gospel Age shall have been released will the full merit of Christ's sacrifice be available for actual Restitution for Adam and all of his race. The portion of merit imputed to each individual follower of Christ is released when that follower dies, because the imputation was merely to permit the sacrifice of the offerer to be acceptable to God. The offerer first gave up his earthly hopes and prospects --the Restitution privileges secured by Jesus for all men. That much he sacrificed instantly at the moment of his consecration, and so disposed of it. His consecration, however, includes all that remains of his talents and powers, vitality and strength, even unto death. Our Redeemer's endorsement for the Church acts as an embargo on the ransom-price which must be paid to Justice as a whole to secure for man restitution privileges.

IMPUTATION OF MERIT ILLUSTRATED

To make an illustration: Suppose that A had deposited a million dollars in the bank, intending it for a specific purpose at a stated time. Meantime some of his friends are needing money or credit. A says to the banker, I do not wish to disturb the million dollars which I have on deposit; but on the strength of its being in your possession, you will be very pleased, I am sure, to extend credit to some of my friends if I endorse their notes. The banker of course would say, Yes. The endorsed notes would be discounted, and A would be liable to the full amount of these notes if they were not paid at maturity. There would, therefore, be an embargo upon his million dollars' credit, to the extent those notes were not paid. But when all the notes were paid, the million dollars [R5661 : page 104] would be as free from obligation as if those notes had not been made and A's credit had not been imputed to anybody.

So it is with us who become Christ's disciples. Jesus endorses our notes. He becomes our Surety that we will fulfil our engagement, that we will lay down our lives. Until our lives are laid down, this imputation constitutes an embargo on Christ's merit which is in reservation to be applied on behalf of the world. But just as each one of us dies, all imputation of merit in behalf of that one is at an end, because his contract is fulfilled. In the case of those who do not lay down their lives willingly as per covenant, Jesus, as the Endorser, will, nevertheless, see to it that they lay down their lives; some of them in the great Time of Trouble will come through great tribulation, and their death will bring them also some measure of blessing; others will die the Second Death.



[R5662 : page 104]

VICTORIES OVER MODERN GIANTS
--APRIL 25.--1 SAMUEL 17:1-54.--

GIANTS OF OLD--DAVID AND GOLIATH--NOT BY HUMAN MIGHT, BUT BY GOD'S SPIRIT, OR POWER--FIGHTING THE GOOD FIGHT--NOT WITH CARNAL WEAPONS --POWER OF THE PEBBLE OF TRUTH.

THE first giants mentioned in the Bible were those who had human mothers, but whose fathers were materialized fallen angels, as recorded in Genesis 6.* These, however, all perished in the Deluge of Noah's day. From time to time since then, there have been human giants found in Asia. Og, king of Bashan, had an iron bedstead thirteen feet long. In their report on Canaan, the spies told of seeing giants there--the sons of Anak. Goliath, the giant of Gath, whom David slew, was probably a descendant of this family.

*For further explanation send 6c. in stamps for booklet, "Spiritism --Proofs that it is Demonism." Address, WATCH TOWER, Brooklyn, N.Y.

We have had giants in recent times, also; Byrne, an Irishman, eight feet four inches; Middleton, an Englishman, nine feet three inches; Lushkin, the Russian, eight feet five inches; Chang, the Chinese, seven feet eight inches. Pliny declared that Gabbaras was nine feet nine inches tall. There is, therefore, no room for discrediting the story of David and Goliath.

David, a youth of probably twenty years, visited the army of Israel, in which three of his brothers were soldiers, taking food and delicacies for their refreshment. To his amazement he found the army of Israel facing the army of the Philistines, who had invaded from the west. They were not fighting, each apparently fearing the other. A champion from the Philistines came forth every morning, a giant in size and strength, wearing a bronze armor weighing two hundred and twenty pounds, and brandishing his spear, the head of which weighed twenty-five pounds, and the shaft of which was nearly three inches thick. He defied the Israelites, declaring that a battle between individuals would settle the war. He defied not only the nation of Israel, but its God.

Young David was amazed that this had progressed so long, and that nobody accepted the challenge. A believer in the true God, he realized the Covenant between God and his nation. His faith in the Almighty was such that he accepted the Divine promises implicitly. He wondered at the lack of faith manifested by his brothers and his countrymen. He intimated that, backed by God's promises, he himself dared to meet that Goliath.

King Saul of Israel had let it be known that great honor would come to the one who would meet the challenge of the foe. Young David was brought before him; but, anxious as he was for a champion, the king realized that the sinewy youth before him would be no match for the giant strength of Goliath, one blow from whose spear would destroy him. Then the stripling pleaded his cause. He declared that, as keeper of his father's sheep, he had time and again delivered them from the mouth and the paw of the lion and the bear. He had the courage, and above all he had the faith in God. As God had blessed him in his daily duties of the past, He would give him strength for victory in the duty of the hour, the meeting of the defiance of the giant and his insult to Jehovah.

The king was impressed. He would lend David his armor--the best in Israel. But after trying it, young David declined it with thanks. He was not accustomed to such armor and could be himself better without it. He took with him merely his shepherd's staff, to which he was accustomed, and his sling. Passing over toward the side of the Philistines for the combat, he chose five smooth pebbles from the brook. This slight armament, with God's blessing, was more than sufficient; for he needed to use only one of the pebbles.

The giant was indignant, saying, "Am I a dog, that this boy should come out to meet me with a stick?" According to tradition, as the lad approached the giant laughed, throwing his head backward. His helmet fell off; and he was exposed to the sure marksmanship of his despised opponent. There were no newspapers in those days, nor public libraries; and he knew not of how mighty a place sling-stones occupied in warfare even then, and that often, in skilled hands, they were almost as effective as are the rifles of today. The giant stunned, his armorbearer fled; and young David quickly dispatched him and took his armor as a trophy. The Philistines surprised, dismayed, fled, Israel pursuing them to their own fortified city.

HOW TO MEET MODERN GIANTS

Following Jesus' death, a new Divine order of things was ushered in. Those who have faith in God still have battles to be won, but not with carnal weapons. Their victories, nevertheless, are based upon the same principle which operated favorably with David. Faith in God is lying at the basis--the realization that the cause in which they fight is one approved of God. A courage proper to their faith--a faith gradually developed in previous victories over lesser foes, as in David's case--helps to give courage and strength for battling with the most terrifying giants we may encounter.

Remembering this, each Christian should be daily on the alert to overcome the little weaknesses, the little frailties --to become conquerors in the little battles with selfishness, anger, malice, envy, evil-speaking. Victories over these, and experiences gained with God's help in overcoming these, give preparation step by step for the greatest trials and the grandest victories.

When we learn of the Divine promise, "To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with Me in My Throne," it gives us the thought that a great victory must be won to prove ourselves worthy of the great honor to which God has called His Church. And this victory, as we are happy to learn, is not always to the strong, but to those whom God will bless. And the conflict which God approves and will reward is not strife with friends or neighbors, however unreasonable they may be, but strife against unrighteousness, against sin, against everything which the Divine Law opposes. This strife and victory belong, first of all, in our own hearts and minds and, secondarily, will extend, as the Lord's providence may indicate, in battling [R5662 : page 105] against public evils and in support of public and civic righteousness.

We are not, however, to forget that the great giant of sin and iniquity, which has dared the people of God for centuries, will be smitten down only at God's appointed time, and by the antitype of David. The name David signifies Beloved. The antitypical Beloved is The Christ-- Jesus the Head, the Church His Body. Shortly, a sling-stone of Truth is to smite down the great opponent; and the antitypical David will begin the Millennial Reign which is to lift up the world and bless it. As members of this David class, we must have the overcoming spirit, and its supporting faith and trust in God's promise and power.



[R5662 : page 105]

THE FAITH OF ONE PERSECUTED
--MAY 2.--1 SAMUEL 19.--

SAUL'S JEALOUSY OF DAVID--ATTEMPTS TO INJURE HIM--FREQUENT DELIVERANCES SUPERHUMAN--SATAN OUR GREAT ENEMY SEEKS OUR INJURY--DEVOTION TO GOD AND RIGHTEOUSNESS SECURES US DELIVERANCE--WHY SUCH EXPERIENCES ARE PERMITTED-- THE ARMY AND THE PEOPLE OF ISRAEL PRAISED AND IDOLIZED THE YOUTHFUL DAVID.

"Whoso putteth his trust in the Lord shall be safe."--Proverbs 29:25.
WARS with the Philistines continuing, David was made a regular soldier, with a command over a regiment and closely in touch with King Saul himself. Victory after victory came wherever David was engaged, and King Saul saw the admiration of the people turned from himself to David. The sentiment reached a climax when, returning from one of the victories, the women and girls of a village came forth singing:
"Saul hath slain his thousands,
But David his tens of thousands!"

The flame of jealousy took full possession of the king, and thenceforth his one purpose seems to have been to destroy David. It was a secret withheld from him that David was already anointed by Samuel to be his successor. He merely knew that Samuel the Prophet had told him that, as a consequence of his failure to carry out the Divine instructions regarding the Amalekites, the kingdom would be taken from him and his family and given to another. He possibly hoped that this might never come true--that his son Jonathan might be his successor.

Jealousy is the bitter fruit of selfishness gone to seed. It unbalances reason, extinguishes happiness. It subjects its possessor to horrible melancholy, so that when it is in control he is really crazy. Not only is this illustrated in King Saul's case, but it is more or less illustrated in the experiences of every human being. Who does not by experience know what jealousy is? and the more he knows of it the worse. It has made murderers of children, as well as of grown-ups. It has wrecked homes, as well as business enterprises. It is the most terrible, and at the [R5663 : page 105] same time the most foolish, manifestation of selfishness. Every one recognizing it in himself should be alarmed-- should throttle it promptly, seeking victory through vigilance, and if a Christian, through prayer.

SAUL'S JEALOUSY WAS CRAFTY

When under control of these fits of jealousy, King Saul is described as having had an evil spirit from the Lord, but more properly, we shall say, an evil spirit opposite from the Lord's--the reverse of the Lord's Spirit of kindness, justice, love. When the king was laboring under these fits of melancholy which followed the cessation of the Philistine wars, young David could sometimes soothe him by skilful playing on a harp; yet he knew the king's treacherous mood and, keen eyed, on two occasions caught the king with his eye in time to hinder Saul from throwing at him a javelin-scepter which he usually carried.

Intent upon drawing David into a quarrel which might be construed as traitorous and justifying his death, the king promised him his elder daughter to wife, and then gave her to another. David, however, was discreet, and merely commented that he was not of a sufficiently noble family to expect such honors; neither was he able financially to give a sufficient dowry for a king's daughter. Another trap was to betroth to him the king's younger daughter, Michal. Young David again told of his unworthiness of the daughter and his lack of wealth for dowry, whereupon Saul stipulated that the dowry should be the evidence of the killing of a hundred Philistines. No doubt he hoped confidently that in the attempt to meet this requirement David would lose his own life; but instead, young David killed twice the number and received Michal, Saul's daughter.

The king, getting more insanely jealous, told his son Jonathan and his courtiers in general that David must be destroyed. The sentiment of Jonathan was as loving and brotherly as his father's was cruel, jealous, selfish. It was Jonathan who would lose by David's attainment of the honor of the kingdom. Hence the love of Jonathan has become a proverb. Additionally, he had the true spirit of manhood and brotherhood, the spirit of a peacemaker. He interceded with his father for David. His language is a beautiful model of filial respect as well as of devotion to his friend David. He said, "Let not the king sin against his servant, against David; because he hath not sinned against thee, and because his works have been to theeward very good: For he did put his life in his hand, and slew the Philistine, and the Lord wrought a great salvation for all Israel; thou sawest it, and didst rejoice; wherefore then wilt thou sin against innocent blood to slay David without a cause?"--Verses 4,5.

The plea of the peacemaker was successful. The king relented. David was brought back and became again a member of the household. But it was only for a time. The king was not without some noble sentiments, but they were not deep enough. They did not control his life. On the contrary he was under the control of the evil mind, the selfish mind, the jealous mind, which is far from, and opposite to, the mind, the Spirit, of God.

Ere long, in a jealous fit again, the king not only made the motion to throw the javelin, but threw it with deadly aim and smote into the wall just behind where David sat; for David was quick and dodged it. David went to his room; but a guard had been stationed there, instructed that upon his coming forth he was to be killed. His wife informed him and assisted him to safety by letting him down out of a window. Possibly the house was built upon the wall, as in the case of St. Paul's similar deliverance.

TWO HUNDRED MURDERS FOR A WIFE

Scoffers seize upon one feature of this lesson to condemn the Bible as encouraging murder and with being, therefore, in conflict with righteousness and in conflict with a God of righteousness. They say, "Here we find David, a Prophet, described as being very discreet and as having the Spirit of the Lord, the spirit of a sound mind; [R5663 : page 106] and yet we see him taking the lives of two hundred human beings as the price of a wife, and not a word in the Scriptures in condemnation."

Such charges and arguments should be met in a reasonable way--they should not be passed over with the remark, "No use reasoning with you; you are an infidel." He that doeth righteousness is righteous; he that doeth unrighteousness is unrighteous. This Bible proposition applies to God and to David, as well as to others. But, when inquiring respecting it, we should approach our subject with unprejudiced minds. Instead of condemning from the standpoint of prejudice, we should rather inquire how this course can be made to square with the principles of justice, which the Bible everywhere maintains.

In the first place, we must have in mind the difference between being a Jew under the Law Covenant and being a Christian under the headship of Christ. Second, we should remember that the Bible does not teach that those who die still live and pass immediately into everlasting torture. It teaches that the dead are really dead, and that the hope which God holds out for them is a resurrection from the death state in the future under more favorable conditions, under the blessed influences of Messiah's Kingdom. The Bible informs us that the penalty of sin is death--not torment after death. It informs us that this penalty was justly inflicted upon Father Adam because of his intelligent and wilful sin. It tells us that the human family are dying because, by laws of heredity, the seeds of sickness, imperfection, death, are in us, from the hour of our birth.

From this viewpoint, our entire world is a world of convicts under death-sentence. This accounts to us for the different treatment which God accords to humanity from that which He gives to angels--joy, peace, life, perfection. This accounts to us for God's permitting various death-dealing circumstances to have control--famine, pestilence, earthquakes, cyclones, etc. When we come to see that the same God who justly condemned all through one man's disobedience has made a provision for the justification of all through the obedience of Christ unto death, then we see things in a new light. When we learn that Messiah's Kingdom is to be set up for the very purpose of bringing light, knowledge of God and full opportunity of return to His favor and everlasting life, our hearts rejoice.

Coming back to our first proposition, we realize that we are not to judge David and people of his time as we would judge ourselves of this Gospel Age. He must be judged by the Law, under which he and his nation were placed at Mount Sinai--"an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, a man's life for a man's life." The Israelites were informed that the people of the Land of Canaan had allowed their cup of iniquity to come to the full (1 Samuel 15:2,3); and that the children of Abraham were given that entire land, with the Divine approval of their taking possession of it as quickly as possible. They were fully commissioned to slay all their enemies there as being enemies of the Lord, not even being told that the Lord had a future provision for them all in Messiah's Kingdom.

The Philistines were in the Land of Canaan, where they not only held their own portion, but had invaded the portion which Israel had already conquered. They had caused loss of many lives in Israel. It was in full accord with the Divine instruction to the Israelites that the Philistines and all other occupants of Canaan should be utterly destroyed. David, therefore, was merely carrying out what all Israelites recognized as being the Divine instruction respecting the Divine Program. From this viewpoint alone can the Lord's instructions and the conduct of the Israelites in the past be recognized as proper.

Under the New Dispensation which began with our Lord's redemptive work and the Pentecostal blessing, the Lord's people of this Age, the Church, are under new orders, and by word and by example they are to illustrate the principles of mercy as in previous times the Jews were commanded to illustrate the principles of Divine Justice. We are to love our enemies, to do good unto them that hate us and that persecute us and say all manner of evil against us falsely. Thus we shall be the children of our Father who is in Heaven, and manifest that we have been begotten of Him by His Holy Spirit. But the Jews were not children of God. They were a "House of Servants." (Hebrews 3:5.) They never thought of speaking of themselves as sons of God. When Jesus declared Himself to be the Son of God they were indignant, said that He blasphemed, and took up stones to stone Him.

The first human son of God was Adam, and when he sinned, he was cut off from that relationship to God; and none others from Adam's time down to Jesus' time were ever recognized or spoken of in the Bible as sons of God. They were sinners, strangers, aliens, foreigners, convicts, under death sentence. But with Jesus came not only the new teaching but the new relationship. "Moses verily was faithful as a servant over all his House; but Christ as a Son over His own House [of sons]; whose House are we, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end."--Hebrews 3:5,6.



[R5664 : page 106]

A FRIEND IN NEED--A FRIEND INDEED
--MAY 9.--1 SAMUEL 20.--

JONATHAN'S LOVE FOR DAVID--A MODEL OF FRIENDSHIP--ITS TEST--ITS ENDURANCE--ITS BASIS--FRIENDSHIP BEING LOST--SELFISHNESS AN IMPENDING DANGER--"EVERY MAN'S HAND AGAINST HIS NEIGHBOR"--THE HEAVENLY MODEL.

"A friend loveth at all times."--Proverbs 17:17.
HISTORY records noble examples of friendship; but supreme amongst these is the story of our lesson--the friendship, the love, of Jonathan, son of Saul and prospective heir of the throne of Israel, for David, his rival in the hearts of the people and in the Divine Program. The purity and unselfishness of his friendship demonstrates to us a nobility possessed by some in those days, which we might not have suspected and which is quite in conflict with the Evolution theory.

The loving spirit of Jonathan stands out all the more in contrast with the jealous spirit of his father, King Saul. Apparently his first meeting with David was after the latter's victory over Goliath. Instead of thinking of David as a rival, who should be crushed, the noble Jonathan took off his own princely robe and gave it to him, together with his sword and his famous bow.

Rev. Alex. Whyte remarks, "Jonathan was the eldest son of Saul; and he was thus the heir-apparent to the throne of Israel. Handsome and high-mettled, full of nerve and full of heart, Jonathan was the pride of the army and the darling of the common people. His comrades, for his beauty of person and swiftness of foot, were wont to call him The Gazelle. But for his father's great and disastrous transgressions, Jonathan might soon have [R5664 : page 107] been the second king of Israel, second in succession to Saul, but second to no king that ever sat on a throne in those great qualities of mind, heart and character that give stability to a throne and add lustre to a crown."

Well was it written by one of the ancients, "Life hath no blessing like an earnest friend"; and a poet has written:

"Life offers no joy like a friend;
Fulfilment and prophecy blend
In the throb of a heart with our own--
A heart where we know and are known."

"A FRIEND IN NEED, A FRIEND INDEED"

Jonathan's friendship, love, was not of the effervescent kind. It was the genuine article. He did not love merely in word, but in deed and in truth--not merely when his father favored his friend and when the public acclaimed him and when he would thus have favor with others; but he loved him just the same when the king became the enemy of his friend and sought his life. Indeed, it may be said that no friendship could be surely counted upon until after it has been tried. The friendship which will not endure trial, testing, the friendship which will make no sacrifices is not the kind to be modeled after.

Jonathan had love of the kind the Lord admonishes His followers to have--the love which in honor prefers one another. While other loves have been great, this one doubtless stands preeminent above earthly love, especially because it was founded on a religious basis. It was because David loved the Lord, and sought to be guided by His will as that will was manifest at that time, that he would wait--that he conducted himself with wisdom, as the record declares. And it was because Jonathan discerned this spirit of wisdom, because he realized David was guided by the spirit of righteousness, that he loved David.

Indeed, we may be sure that in proportion as we understand the Bible and receive the spirit of the Truth, in that same proportion we shall be able to appreciate and to copy and to exemplify the best there is of principle--whether of friendship, or of duty to a monarch, of duty to our family relationship, or of duty toward our God. There are many influences operating toward a spirit of selfishness, avarice, jealousy, while the influences making for true friendship, true love, all the best qualities of heart and head, are from the Lord.

We have already noted in a previous lesson how Jonathan acted as peacemaker between his father the king, and David. Today's lesson brings to our attention another occasion on which Jonathan acted the part of a true friend. David realized that his life was in danger and mentioned his fears to Jonathan. The latter was at a loss to believe that his father would break his word, yet was impressed by David's attitude. The feast of the new moon was at hand; and David was expected to sit at the royal table, King Saul at the head, Prince Jonathan at the right hand, the captain of the host at the left, and David occupying the fourth place, opposite the king. In harmony with an arrangement made between the friends, Jonathan was to ascertain his father's intentions definitely and to communicate these to David.

On the first day of the feast the king said nothing, although Jonathan, to attract attention to the matter and thus to draw out his father, chose a convenient time for taking David's seat. Finally the king asked for the "son of Jesse," as though he hated the very name "David." Jonathan replied that David had gone to keep the feast at Bethlehem by his permission.

The king had apparently been foiled in his intention to kill David at this time and vented his wrath upon his son, whom really he greatly loved. He addressed him as an unruly son, unworthy of his mother, thus implying that he ignored him as his own son. In his anger he threw a javelin at his son, probably not with the intention of striking him, but merely of venting his ferocious jealousy. Jonathan's speech in return shows that he was thinking less of what he himself was risking for his friend and more in respect to the injustice being done that friend. "So Jonathan arose from the table in fierce anger, and did eat no meat the second day of the month; for he was grieved for David, because Saul had done him shame."

It is a beautiful friendship which in stress forgets self and thinks only of the interests of the friend. As though in contrast with all the human loves and friendships, we read of Jesus, "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends." Nevertheless, in the case of Jesus, it meant more than any earthly love or friendship; for "while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." The Apostle declares that the Lord thus set an example to all Christians, that they should "lay down their lives for the brethren," be ready to die the one for the other. This is the Heavenly love, the Divine friendship, of which the love of Jonathan may be taken as a sample, next to the example of our Lord and the Apostles.

"IS IT NOT BEYOND THEE?"

The next morning David, having returned from his home, was to get Jonathan's judgment respecting the king's sentiments. The agreed-upon signal was that Jonathan with his bow and arrows should go into the field near to a great rock; and in connection with his archery would call out, "Is it not beyond thee? Make haste!" if the message was that David should flee. And so it was done. But the two friends could not think of parting, perhaps forever, without having personal contact. Jonathan went over to the rock behind which David hid. The two embraced, after the manner of the East, kissing each other Goodbye--true lovers, with a manly, noble love.

Here it was that Jonathan indicated his faith in God's providence in respect to David, and asked him to make a covenant with him that whatever should occur he would deal graciously with him and his family, saying, "Go in peace, forasmuch as we have sworn both of us in the name of the Lord, saying, The Lord be between me and thee, and between my seed and thy seed, forever. And he arose and departed; and Jonathan returned to the city."

Bible history shows us that David never forgot the obligation he thus undertook to be a friend to the family of Saul. The custom of the East at that time was that a new dynasty coming into power should utterly destroy all the males of the dynasty which was being overturned. But this was not so in David's case.

It was on the occasion of Jonathan's death with his father on the field of battle shortly after, in conflict with the Philistines, that David expressed the beautiful words:

"O Jonathan, on thy high places thou wast slain!
I am distressed for thee, my Jonathan, my brother!
Pleasant hast thou been to me exceedingly!
Wonderful was thy love to me, passing the love of women!"

We trust that none can read this story without being influenced favorably toward friendship, to be a truer, a nobler, a more faithful friend than otherwise; but especially should Christians get a blessing from this story of Jonathan's love, leading on as it does to the love of Christ and to the injunction that they should be copies of God's dear Son; and that their friendship should be loyal, true, enduring, especially one for the other, as the Apostle exhorts, "Doing good unto all men as we have opportunity, especially unto the Household of Faith."



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SEEDTIME AND HARVEST OF CHARACTER

"Be not deceived,...he that soweth to the flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit, shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting."--Galatians 6:7,8.
THE APOSTLE here brings to our attention the fact that there is danger of some of the Lord's people being deceived. Some might think that they could live according to their earthly desires, fleshly desires, and then attend meeting, or observe other religious forms, and it would make them all right with God. Others might deceive themselves into thinking that they might live according to the flesh, and then by going to the Lord in prayer they might have the matter all forgiven and corrected, and still be as far along spiritually as those who live daily a life of faithfulness to God. Another error which has deceived many is the teaching that, after living according to the inclinations of the flesh in sinful ways, they can go to the priest and obtain absolution, and that this will make them all right again.

Now these are deceptions. God has established a general principle which applies both to the Church and to the world. This general principle operates along the lines of sowing and reaping. Suppose a man unfamiliar with the nature of certain seeds should sow seed of thistles or of tares. A little later he might visit his field and say, "This seed seems to have been all right. I see nothing wrong. It has not hurt the ground in any respect; the field looks as well as if I had sown timothy seed or clover seed. The plants are green and thrifty, and indeed make quite a fine appearance." But later in the season the nature of the crop would make very manifest the dire mistake in the choice of the seed sown.

In the natural world men are sure to reap in kind as they have sown. They would not expect to sow tare seed and reap a crop of wheat. The law of cause and effect is no less inexorable in the spiritual realm. And so the Apostle says that "God is not mocked"--do not think that you can do an evil thing and get good results. Whoever "sows to the wind shall reap the whirlwind"; whoever sows to the flesh will reap accordingly; whoever sows to the Spirit will reap in kind.

THOUGHT THE BEGINNING OF CHARACTER

What is meant, then, by this word "sowing" when referring to spiritual things? Apparently it means a course of life, or conduct, that would bring good results or a course that would bring evil results. We sometimes hear the expression, "That young man is sowing his wild oats." The thought is that the conduct of such a one is evil; and that the conduct of the individual will react upon his character. We might go further and say that all conduct must be incited by previous thought. In other words, our thoughts are the initiative in what we are! To illustrate: When God would create the world He first had a Plan respecting it. All that He has been doing since has been the following out of a Plan that He originally had. We might say that it was the good thoughts of God which led to the good results.

So it has been in the case of Satan. Satan's course in the world has been that of sowing evil things, sowing tares. His course has been fatal to himself and injurious to others, and it was the result of the wrong thought he had before he committed the sin. He had said in his heart, "I will ascend into Heaven; I will exalt my throne above the stars of God;...I will ascend above the height of the clouds; I will be like the Most High." (Isaiah 14:13,14.) He had a covetous spirit, a selfish, presumptuous spirit, a spirit in opposition to God.

These two spirits are still operative in the world-- God's Spirit and the spirit of the Adversary. In referring to things pertaining to humanity, the Apostle speaks of this Adversary spirit as being the spirit of the flesh-- not that it is the spirit of the flesh in its original perfection, but the spirit of the fallen flesh. It is the spirit of Satan, which has become dominant in the human family. The Apostle addresses the words of our text particularly to the Church, but with a good application to the world also. If any of the Lord's people who have been enlightened and made partakers of the Holy Spirit should live according to the flesh chiefly, they would surely not receive the prize of the High Calling. If they wish to attain glory, honor and immortality, they must live according to the Spirit of God, the spirit of God's Law, the spirit of righteousness. They must conform their lives to the life of Christ their Exemplar, or they can never hope to attain the things promised them.

Because of the imperfection of the flesh inherited through Father Adam, the Lord's children can never in this life attain the perfection that they would wish. There will be blemishes and weaknesses of brain, of thought, and of the entire body. But they should live as nearly up to the standard as possible, and the Lord will compensate for their unintentional weaknesses. His grace will be sufficient for them to enable them to overcome. But if they sow to the flesh, they will reap in the flesh--they will reap the evil. However, if they are still loyal to the Lord, and repent of their derelictions, striving to overcome, He will overrule these experiences for their good.

LOYAL HEART THE FIRST REQUISITE

It is therefore for the Church to sow according to the Spirit, to conduct themselves according to the Spirit of God, who is a righteous Spirit Being. In order to do this, we see that the heart must be right. So the getting of our hearts right is the very first thing the Lord sets before us. We cannot even become His children until our hearts are right. We must turn from sin and accept the atonement of the great Sin-Bearer. Then we must heed the words of our Lord, "If any man will be My disciple, let him deny himself, take up his cross and follow Me." In so doing we are sowing to the Spirit. If we continue thus to sow, we shall reap the great reward-- all the glorious spiritual things the Lord has promised to His faithful ones of the Gospel Age.

But in proportion as we are derelict, as we sow seeds of evil, in that same proportion shall we be sowing to corruption. This does not necessarily mean the Second Death; but there will be corrections and stripes for the things which are improper. Whoever, therefore, sows a little to the flesh will reap accordingly. If he continues to sow according to the flesh, he will reap a much larger measure of results--greater corruption. And if his life be given over to sin, if he has abandoned the life of the Spirit entirely, the effect will be the Second Death, which is the extreme penalty of wilful opposition to God.

Hence, sowing to the flesh might or might not mean certainly to reap the Second Death. It would surely mean to reap difficulty, tendencies away from God, in proportion to the evil sowing. With the spirit-begotten it would surely lead to the Second Death if the course is not changed. We see this matter illustrated in many Christian people. They begin the Christian course, and live to a considerable degree to the Spirit of God, yet they occasionally give way to the things of the flesh and more or less encourage the fleshly mind. They do not perhaps realize any immediate results, but there are evil seeds sown. These evil seeds, evil thoughts in the mind, even if afterwards repented of, may more or less corrupt [R5666 : page 109] the mind all the rest of life; they tend away from the Lord, away from the Heavenly things, and make so much more to fight against. The Christian should see to it that all of his course in life, his desires, his thoughts, are brought into accord with the spirit of a sound mind, the Spirit of God, the Holy Spirit.

Sowing to the Spirit and sowing to the flesh would, we understand, mean either to live according to God's way or, on the other hand, to live according to the spirit of the Adversary--to sow seed that will result either in the blessed fruits of the Holy Spirit of God or in the fruits of the fallen flesh--the corrupted, Satanized spirit with all its accompaniments. If we live according to our flesh, it will mean corruption, moral and spiritual degeneration; for we are in the corruptible condition.

PRESENT COURSE OF WORLD TO BEAR ON FUTURE

In their present condition the world cannot hope to gain everlasting life; for they have not come into relationship with the Life-Giver, although God has provided, as the Church knows, an opportunity for everlasting life to the whole world of mankind. But while the world is not yet on trial for this everlasting life, nevertheless their conduct has a decided bearing on their future. If now they are living according to the lines of selfishness--self-gratification --they will reap correspondingly, according to the influences that are at work in them. And this will leave them in a more and more corrupted condition as they continue so to live, and they will have more to overcome in the next Age, if they would ever gain everlasting life. They would be much more advanced and advantaged if they would follow the things of righteousness, if they would cultivate the principles of justice and love; and they will be much more degraded and handicapped if they follow the things of selfishness and impurity.

We might carry the matter clear back to Eden. In the case of Father Adam, when he sowed to self-gratification, when he ate of the forbidden fruit, he followed the wrong course; he failed to follow his best judgment, his conscience; he followed inclination. As a result he brought upon himself the death penalty, which gradually led to extinction of life; and all his posterity have shared his condemnation. Sad was the sowing, and most bitter and far-reaching has been the reaping. But through the mercy of God even man's terrible experiences with sin will prove a very valuable object lesson to angels and to all of God's intelligent creatures throughout eternity.



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"CHOOSE YE THIS DAY WHOM YE WILL SERVE"

"No man can serve two masters...Ye cannot serve God and Mammon."--Matthew 6:24.
THE THOUGHT which our Lord apparently wished to impress upon His disciples was that there is a principle involved in service --that no one can possibly render full service to two opposing interests, two opposing masters; for the one would surely be neglected in the interest of the other. There would be more or less of a preference shown. After making a general observation regarding the impossibility of serving two masters, the Lord applied this principle, saying, "Ye cannot serve God and Mammon"--God and selfishness, righteousness and unrighteousness. Man was originally God's servant. It was natural for him to appreciate the Divine character and arrangements and to render willing service. But mankind were deceived as they got under the control of the great Adversary, being influenced by the powers of evil, the chief effects of which have been ignorance, superstition and selfishness.

One of the deplorable conditions of the present time is that from birth selfishness is almost forced upon one. Man learns to give his time, his influence, for selfish purposes and projects. He fails to see that God is the One who should be served at any cost. But men were born and shapen in iniquity. They are servants of Sin, slaves of Sin. But our Lord Jesus pointed out that through the knowledge of Himself and compliance with His terms of discipleship, there came a release from this slavery, an opportunity to pass over to the side of righteousness.

However, an opportunity to take a stand for right came before our Lord's day. As a knowledge of God was granted to any people, they had an opportunity to assert themselves on the side of right. At the time when the Law Covenant was given, God set forth the principles of righteousness in that Law. The whole nation of Israel accepted God as their Savior, and entered into a Covenant with Him that they would be His loyal people. Yet after they had done this, the influences of evil in their flesh became manifest. They sought to be the servants of God and at the same time of self, dividing their interests between God's affairs and the affairs of self.

A WORTHY EXAMPLE SET

Jesus pointed out this particular fact, and told the people of His day that it was impossible to perform this half-hearted service--they could not serve two masters, for nobody would be pleased. If they were to serve Mammon, serve the Present Order of things, then they could not be pleasing to God. If they wished to serve God, serve righteousness, to whatever extent they did this they would be displeasing to the world; they must be servants of either the one or the other; the two services combined would be impossible.

The example of our Lord Jesus when He came to earth, was in harmony with this position; for He fully renounced the world and made absolute consecration of His life to God and His service. Thus He set us an example. All who have the same spirit should walk in His steps. This was in accordance with the Jewish Law: "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, with all thy mind, with all thy being, with all thy strength." Any one who kept this Law would not be serving self; for his service would be all for God.

Those who are following in the Master's footsteps are all for God, or, as we sometimes sing, "All for Jesus." As we follow the example of Jesus, and walk as He walked, we are rendering whole-hearted service to God. The result of serving this Master will be a great reward. "Him hath God highly exalted, and given Him a name above every name." And the Church has been invited to follow Him. So we should serve God in everything, with all our heart, mind, soul, strength. This is our commission. This we are to do to the point of sacrificing all earthly interests and of laying down our lives for the brethren. This course, followed faithfully to the end, will bring us to the same reward that Jesus received-- glory, honor, immortality.

RENDERING UNTO CAESAR HIS OWN

It may be asked how this text comports with the Apostle's suggestion that one who was bound when he received the Truth should not seek to be free. (1 Corinthians 7:20-22.) These words of St. Paul express the thought that when the Truth finds us it does not necessarily change our earthly relationships; that if a man were a slave, for instance, and the Truth of God reached him, he should not rebel against his earthly master. He is not to think of this new relationship to God as changing [R5666 : page 110] the color of his skin or his earthly relationship. The Apostle is speaking of the body and not the heart when he says, "Seek not to be loosed." Our bodies may be enslaved for one reason or another. It might be a bondage like that of olden times--captured service. Or it might be that we had become the servants of those who were willing to pay for our services. While we are not to do anything contrary to the Divine Law or to our consciences, yet we are to serve our earthly masters faithfully. They have purchased our time, or a large measure of it; and we must render to them conscientiously all that is theirs by contract. If one is a servant in a military way, or in any other way, he should be faithful.

This will not interfere with one's service to God; for our Lord has instructed us to "render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar's." Whoever is faithful in this is doing the will of his Heavenly Master. There would be no conflict, but full harmony. The only conflict would be if the master on earth should wish us to do something contrary to the commands of our Master in Heaven. We are to suffer anything rather than do what our Heavenly Lord would not approve, and thus defile our consciences.

Looking into the future, we see that the present master, ruler, of this Old Order is soon to be bound, that he may deceive the nations no more for a thousand years, and that the new Ruler, the new Master of the world, is to be The Christ--Jesus and His Church. We ask ourselves how this principle will apply then. The answer is that there will be only the one Master to obey. There will be no rendering unto Caesar then. All will be made fully aware that this Master is the only one who has the power, the right to command. The knowledge of God's glory shall fill the whole earth--the knowledge of God's Righteousness, the knowledge of God's Power, the knowledge of God's Wisdom, the knowledge of God's Love. Whatever He commands is the right thing, as every one will then learn and fully understand. [R5667 : page 110]

THE SCRIPTURALLY "WICKED"

In the Scriptures Satan is represented as the deceiver of mankind. He puts light for darkness and darkness for light. God's proposition through Christ is that during the thousand years of the Millennial Reign, the whole world will be brought to the true knowledge of God, an accurate knowledge. Deception will be no longer permitted. The world will see what righteousness really is, what its rewards really are, and how desirable it is. As a consequence, the majority will then, we think, be glad to give heed to the one Master. The exceptions are represented as having the same disposition as Satan; and whoever will have that disposition will be destroyed. When a person comes to know the right and when the right is made reasonable, and possible for him, and he then prefers to do wrong rather than right, let him die the death. This will be the sentence. Such will be counted "the wicked," the incorrigible.

The word "wicked" from the Scriptural standpoint, means those who do wrong intentionally. So all the wicked, knowing the wrong to be wrong, and doing it wilfully and purposely, shall die the Second Death. In due time none shall be left alive except those who serve the one true Master. The difficulty with mankind at present is ignorance, which God has not yet lifted from the world. He has permitted the ignorance and darkness of the present time that the world may learn its lesson of the exceeding sinfulness of sin, and be the better prepared for the lessons that are to follow. "The god of this world hath blinded the minds of them that believe not, lest the light of the glorious Gospel of Christ should shine unto them." But these blinded minds shall soon have the obstructions removed that they may see.

Those who have become children of the light, who have accepted the Lord Jesus and become His disciples, and who now see clearly the Divine will and Plan, have much more responsibility than those who have never seen. We also have greater prospects of blessing--not only the present joy, comfort, peace and knowledge, but additionally the hope of making our "calling and election sure," of attaining to joint-heirship with the Master. God will leave the scattering of the darkness for Christ to do. God has let the world go on its way, meantime providing the Savior, the Deliverer--The Christ--who will soon take control of the whole world. He will cause the light, the Truth, to shine out, to flood the earth with knowledge and blessing. Then with the true light shining everywhere, there will be no excuse for anybody who will not walk in it; each one must then choose finally whether or not he will serve the true Master.



page 110

INTERESTING LETTERS

BABYLON'S SERMONS, S. S. LESSONS, ETC.
GENTLEMEN:--

I write to say to you that I left the Presbyterian Church in November. I was baptized Sunday afternoon, January 24th, and am now enjoying full rights as a member of the Body of Christ with the brethren.

This came about by my having read one of your leaflets during the first part of November--a leaflet which had been placed on our front porch by some unknown messenger-- one of the articles printed in it describing the Mystical Babylon's fall with the command, "Come out of her, my people," etc. This struck my mind with such force that I never went back to our Church, my last visit being the evening before Thanksgiving for a prayer service. I was dissatisfied before I left, not only with the weak sermons--sermonettes, I called them--but with the weak Sunday School lessons and fully as weak Bible Class lessons. I was honestly hungry for mental and spiritual food, commensurate with the strength of my mind. I never found it, outside of the Bible, until I bought a complete set of Pastor Russell's books and read them through. I was extremely anxious to have Revelation and part of Daniel's prophecies explained, but did not know where to obtain the needed assistance. Now all is made clear and I have to exclaim over and over, "I would not take a fortune for them and do without them!" My experience is the same as that of the rest of the Class; it is hard to pull ourselves away (even for rest and food) from the study of the Bible when it is done with the aid of those valuable books, "STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES." Am so thankful for them.

Last fall the Methodist minister here warned me particularly to have nothing to do with those books or leaflets, saying I would be so drawn in I couldn't extricate myself. This whetted my interest, but I found, unknown to myself, that he really told the truth; for I am drawn in, and what is more remarkable, I would not wish to extricate myself, if I could. I have the full set of books, largest size, have subscribed for THE WATCH TOWER and am pleased with the BIBLE STUDENTS MONTHLY also. I want some of these books to go to some of my Presbyterian friends by mail, sub rosa. Thanking you for your kindness, I am,

Very respectfully,
MRS. H. B. PORTER.


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THE VOW AN ADDED SAFEGUARD

MY DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:--

In the fulness of time the attention of the dear Brethren here was publicly directed to the consideration of the VOW as an added safeguard to the New Creature and a further aid to the development of the spiritual graces. Here the first result was to cause a division in the camp for the time being, some of the brethren assuming an attitude of determined opposition to it. The great Adversary is mightily afraid of that VOW. He realizes that it will always be a most effective check upon his machinations, and so he invents a hundred and one reasons why it should be [R5667 : page 111] avoided. We had them all: It would "despoil us of our liberties"; it would "hinder our fellowship"; it would "make business intercourse difficult"; and "marriage of the saints impossible." "No, we would not sell our liberties and spoil the loving fellowship we formerly enjoyed." "We would not take the VOW, even though it cast us into outer darkness!"

Here, as always, the Adversary overreached himself, and reason returning, some were constrained to ask, "Could such a course that seems bound to stampede the Lord's flock be of His leading?" And so one after another was led to reconsider his attitude to the VOW; and as this was done, the opposition thereto melted away like mists before the sun. A dear Brother who was strong in opposition to the VOW, was led to see the folly of that course, and was anxious, therefore, to publicly intimate his conversion. This he did in a most noble manner. After explaining his change of front and the reason therefor, he came out and in the presence of the whole class affixed his signature to the enclosed copy. Of course, such action was infectious and to our great joy one after another followed our dear Brother's example until now the opposition to the VOW has vanished into thin air. Praise the Lord for His great goodness to us!

Now we, twenty-four Brothers and Sisters of the Ecclesia at Durban, wish to thank you for the admirable foresight which caused you some years ago to propound such a wise provision for our safeguarding in these evil days; and we wish to assure you that we have made this VOW our own, and are determined by His grace to vow and pay unto the Lord our God. To this end we humbly beseech an interest in your prayers; and in testimony of our determination we have set our names to the accompanying copy. May God give us all grace to be faithful unto death, that we may gain the crown of life!

With continued Christian love to you, dear Brother, and to all those of like precious faith at the Bethel, I remain,

Your Brother in our imminent Hope,
WM. W. JOHNSON.--Natal, S. Africa.

[New readers of THE WATCH TOWER may not fully understand the above letter, not having seen a copy of the VOW. Upon post-card request we will mail a copy of it free.]


HELPFUL SUGGESTIONS ENDORSED

DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:--

In sending in current report I am constrained to bring to your notice a point of some possible moment as respects the arrangements for public meetings at small places.

It appears to me that some of the dear Pilgrim brethren have permitted the large audiences at certain places to create an impression that small audiences are hardly worth while. In consequence, whenever there is a small attendance at a publicly advertised meeting, they advise the brother, "If I were you I should not try a public meeting here any more." At a number of recent appointments, friends have told me practically the same thing.

I find that sometimes not a single grain of wheat will result from a large meeting, while at other times several grains will come from a small meeting. Then, in such little places, everyone knows everybody's business, and if a private class meeting is held there will usually be a few strangers. I don't see why it wouldn't be better to make some little public announcement and get twenty-five strangers instead of a few.

In such places a public meeting is practically no trouble or expense. Often there is no good hall in the place, but a schoolhouse to be had free.

If the Pilgrim brethren would not discourage the holding of public services, but would rather advise as to wisest way of getting results therefrom, I think it would be better.

Another thing: A class recently visited complained about the way the Pilgrims had been "scolding" them. Wouldn't it be an improvement if all scolding was done more indirectly, by example and suggestion, rather than by direct and public criticism.

It has done me great good to perceive the great number who seem to be laying hold on the Truth. Everywhere this is so evident. With much Christian love,

Yours in His name,
B. H. BARTON.


ENTERED UPON HER LAST TEST

MY BELOVED PASTOR:--

I was very much impressed by the statement in the Dec. 15 WATCH TOWER: "The Church has entered upon her last test." In applying this to myself and others, I should be able to notice testings of a more peculiar and stringent character than in the past. And I do. One is the test to be especially recognized and honored of the brethren. The Lord has given me victory. I am reconciled to God's ways. In watching others, I can see the same struggle.

In our Berean Bible Class Study, with fifteen or twenty attending, we do not always get around to ask each a question, though all have an opportunity to ask questions and comment. This does not meet with the approval of all the sisters. One Sister, with some teaching ability, is offended because we do not comment favorably upon her questions and answers. She thinks that the Elders are trying to keep the Sisters down, that we are not asking her enough questions and paying due respect to her.

We think it proper not to give too much encouragement where there seems to be plenty, but rather to encourage the quiet and backward ones. We think the Sister is in enough danger anyway, as she is taking upon herself to teach two classes of sisters. We shall strive to live and teach so as to have a conscience void of offense before God and man.

May the Lord help us all, Elders and otherwise, to realize more fully the responsibility resting upon us, and to manifest a more brotherly care for each other, knowing that we all expect to be with the Lord in glory shortly. May God bless you in your service!

Your humble Brother by His grace,
__________.


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HUNGRY FOR GOD'S LOVE

MY DEAR PASTOR RUSSELL:--

Your sermons in the newspapers are such a comfort, and I am proud to know that there is a man of God who is brave enough to tell the Truth as he sees it. We go to church, but where is the comfort to be found there? Money! money! money! The poor man is made to feel his position in life so keenly that it is far better for him to stay at home and go out in the fields or on the water and praise God there, for God wants the heart and a good, pure life.

We are hungry for God and for Christ's love--pure, sweet love. We go to church, but we are made to feel that we poor creatures need to know more of God's love! It is there for us, only our eyes are not yet opened. We have attended the same church for twenty years--Presbyterian, and a little over two years ago I had an awful, awful sorrow (I had but the two sons), when my older son was taken ill. Everything was done that could be done for him, but God called him home. His was one of the most beautiful characters. When he was ill and suffering, there was never a murmur. He was on the Produce Exchange, and his employer wrote him a most beautiful letter, stating that they had stood side by side for thirteen years and he had never seen a frown.

After the funeral, and our bills were being settled, we were horrified when the undertaker said to my husband that the minister expected his pay--from five to ten dollars. What a dreadful thing to think that the last prayer over the remains of my precious boy had to be paid for! We have the receipt.

What would our blessed Savior say to that? Oh, keep telling us of God's love! It will help us to bear the cross as we go through life. If it were only known in the pure, simple way, how many dear, discouraged souls it would help! It is not to be found in the churches of today.

Very sincerely,
MRS. E. H. LOMAS.


ECHOES SENTIMENTS OF MANY PRISONERS

DEAR SIR:--

As one of more than fourteen-hundred prisoners confined in Clinton Prison at Dannemora, N.Y., I wish to thank you and all concerned in the production of the PHOTO-DRAMA OF CREATION. It has been a great privilege to view the pictures, and I have derived lasting benefit during these past four days.

I but echo the sentiments of every prisoner within these walls when I say that this exhibition has given us a better knowledge of creation, of God and of Christ than we could possibly get, unaided, from any other source. It has made a deep impression upon all of us. It has lifted our thoughts to a higher, better life and has given us a far better understanding of things of which we have heretofore been ignorant.

It would have pleased you to have witnessed the manner in which the pictures were received by the hundreds of men who are considered hardened criminals.

When the motion picture of Jesus' awakening of Jairus' daughter and the healing of the lame and blind was on the screen the prisoners voluntarily joined softly in the hymn of the phonograph singer. This was most impressive; and the man must indeed be hardened whose heart would not be moved.

Again thanking you, please accept greetings and best wishes for a continuance of your health.

Sincerely yours,
WILLIAM F. GILLESPIE.



page 112

INTERNATIONAL BIBLE STUDENTS ASSOCIATION CLASSES



BETHEL HYMNS FOR MAY

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 May follow:

(1) 43; (2) 273; (3) 318; (4) 303; (5) 173; (6) 24; (7) 83; (8) 165; (9) 330; (10) 20; (11) 327; (12) 293; (13) 119; (14) 7; (15) 264; (16) 221; (17) 155; (18) 188; (19) 4; (20) 54 (21) 17; (22) 105; (23) 52; (24) 282; (25) 87; (26) 104; (27) 88; (28) 213; (29) 1; (30) 45; (31) 172.



page 113
April 1st

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

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

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

VOL. XXXVIAPRIL 15No. 8

A. D. 1915--A.M. 6043


CONTENTS

The Sum of All Graces115
The Spectrum of Love116
World's Imitation an Outward Veneer116
Unselfish, Sweet Tempered, Sincere117
Strong, Trustful, Hopeful118
The Editor's Proposition118
White Raiment of the Kingdom118
"Light Afflictions" Here--"Glory to Follow"120
As He Was, So Are We, in This World120
Our "Covenant by Sacrifice"121
"Therefore Glorify God in Your Body"121
"Touch Not Mine Anointed"122
Training for Kingdom Work122
Earth's Five Universal Empires123
King Saul's Last Battle124
Returning to Business125
Interesting Items126
War Hastening Millennium126
Memorial Supper Reports127

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 114

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 AND TRACT SOCIETY
CHARLES T. RUSSELL, PRESIDENT
"BROOKLYN TABERNACLE," 13-17 HICKS ST.,
BROOKLYN, N.Y., U.S.A.

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

REVISED CONVENTION ITINERARY

A few changes of dates have been necessary, as below:--

May  9--Pittsburgh, Penna.        May 20--Dallas, Texas.
 "  10--Altoona, Penna.            "  21--Waco, Texas.
 "  11--East Liverpool, Ohio.      "  22--Houston, Texas.
 "  12--Dayton, Ohio.              "  23--San Antonio, Texas.
 "  13--Cincinnati, Ohio.          "  24--El Paso, Texas.
 "  14--St. Louis, Mo.             "  26--Riverside, Cal.
 "  15--Columbia, Mo.              "  27--Los Angeles, Cal.
 "  16--Kansas City, Mo.           "  28--San Diego, Cal.
 "  17--Coffeyville, Kans.         "  29--Santa Ana, Cal.
 "  18--Oklahoma City, Okla.       "  30--San Francisco, Cal.
 "  19--Denison, Texas.

June 7th will be BIBLE STUDENTS' DAY at the Fair, where Festival Hall has been set apart for their use that day. Brother Russell expects to deliver a public address on Sunday, May 30th, at San Francisco and on Sunday, June 6th, at Oakland. He also expects to be with the Conventioners at Festival Hall, June 7th. He will have editorial duties and correspondence needing his attention. He will probably speak only once at the Oakland Convention, aside from the two public Sunday addresses here mentioned and the address at Festival Hall, June 7th.

For information respecting room and board at reasonable rates address I.B.S.A. Committee, Box 473, Oakland, Cal.

THE RETURN JOURNEY
June  8--Sacramento, Cal.         June 17--Butte, Mont.
 "   10--Portland, Ore.            "   19--Greeley, Colo., a.m.
 "   11--Bellingham, Wash.         "   19--Cheyenne, Wyo., p.m.
 "   12--Vancouver, B.C., a.m.     "   20--Denver, Colo.
 "   12--Everett, Wash., p.m.      "   21--Colorado Springs, Colo.
 "   13--Seattle, Wash.            "   22--Pueblo, Colo.
 "   13--Tacoma, Wash.             "   23--Omaha, Neb.
 "   14--Spokane, Wash.            "   24--Chicago, Ill.
 "   15--Missoula, Mont., a.m.     "   25--South Bend, Ind.
 "   15--Helena, Mont., p.m.       "   27--Indianapolis, Ind.
 "   16--Great Falls, Mont.       July  4--N.Y. City Temple.

DOCTOR JONES' EXCURSION PARTY

Brother Jones advises that our Convention program seems too long for the proposed plan of Special Car. His latest thought is that himself and some others may overtake Brother Russell at Los Angeles Convention, proceed thence to San Francisco and then return to Chicago direct.


LITTLE CONVENTIONAL GATHERINGS

In harmony with our suggestion the friends at various places where Brother Russell will be addressing the public are arranging for little, quiet, local Conventions. Incidentally, we remark, that these are often amongst the most profitable. We advise that they be not made public --that the public be not invited to them, unless, indeed, it would be the particular friends of those who might be in attendance, especially if they were consecrated people. Some of the places intending such gatherings have sent us the particulars noted below.

Information respecting board and lodging at economical rates, etc., etc., should be obtained from the Class Secretaries.

PITTSBURGH, PA., May 9 (other dates not yet determined).
     Address R. H. Bricker, Class Sec'y, 1323 Goebel St., N.S.
ALTOONA, PA., May 9, 10.
     Address Class Sec'y, F. B. McClellan, 322 Cherry St.
EAST LIVERPOOL, O., May 9, 10, 11.
     Address Class Sec'y, I. Whitehill, 1062 Oak St.
CINCINNATI, O., May 13, 14, 15, 16.
     Address Class Sec'y, H. Schulz, 201 Lincoln Inn Court.
ST. LOUIS, Mo., May 14, 15, 16.
     Address Class Sec'y, J. H. Hoeveler, 6126 Waterman Ave.
KANSAS CITY, MO., May 14, 15, 16.
     Address Class Sec'y, Mrs. R. H. Goza, 4409 E. 27th St.
SEDALIA, MO., May 15, 16.
     Address Class Sec'y, S. Bowser, 501 E. 4th St.
COFFEYVILLE, KANS., May 16, 17.
     Address Class Sec'y, Mrs. C. F. Palmeyer, 302 E. 6th St.
OKLAHOMA CITY, OKLA., May 16, 17, 18.
     Address Class Sec'y, G. F. Wilson, 801-1/2 W. 9th St.
HOUSTON, TEXAS, May 21, 22, 23.
     Address Class Sec'y, J. Isaac, Jr., 905 Thompson St.
LOS ANGELES, CAL., May 26, 27, 28, 29.
     Address Class Sec'y, F. P. Sherman, Peoples Temple, 8th and Flower Sts.


THE WATCH TOWER FREE LIST

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I. B. S. A. BEREAN BIBLE STUDIES
FOR THE MONTH OF MAY
Questions from Manual on Series Second of
"STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES"
STUDY VII.
Week of May  2.......Q. 38 to 44  Week of May 16......Q. 52 to 53
Week of May  9.......Q. 45 to 51  Week of May 23......Q. 54 to 59
Week of May 30.......Q. 60

Question Manuals on Vol. II., STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES, 5c. each; or 50c. per dozen, postpaid.



[R5668 : page 115]

THE SUM OF ALL GRACES

"And now abideth faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love."--1 Corinthians 13:13.
THE Apostle Paul has just been referring to the various miraculous gifts of the Spirit then granted to all begotten of the Spirit to the new nature. Any one lacking some such special gift at that time would thus manifest to all believers that he had not become a member of the Church of Christ. These supernatural gifts also served to assist the primitive Church in spiritual growth. They did not have the Bible in those days, and if they had possessed it, but very few could have read it; hence, they needed special assistance which the Church afterward did not need, and which later was taken away.

In this letter to the Church at Corinth, the Apostle, after discussing these various gifts, says, "And yet I show unto you a more excellent way." Then he proceeds to point out the super-excellence of the fruit of Love. Whoever has the Holy Spirit must have a measure at least of this fruitage, whether it be the little flower that contains the fruit-bud or whether it be the partly developed fruit, the fully developed fruit or the ripened fruit. God our Father, who looks upon the heart, knows how His Holy Spirit in the heart is seeking to control the flesh, to guide the mind and all the words and actions. We are not able to judge one another's hearts. The Apostle said that he did not feel able properly to judge even himself, but left judgment to the Lord. He knew that his heart was loyal and that he was endeavoring to be all that the Lord would have him be. Though he was conscious of his inability always to "do the things that he would," he knew that the Master would accept his loyalty of heart; so he would do his best and leave the remainder with God.

Our faith and our hope in the Lord lead us to earnest endeavor to develop the fruitage of love in all its varied and beautiful phases. Gentleness is a part of love; meekness is a part of love; so also are humility and brotherly-kindness. The question at issue with each child of God is not, How tall and well-built am I? or, How fine-looking or well-educated or well-connected am I according to the flesh? or, How many or how fine sermons have I preached? or even, How many have I brought to a knowledge of the Truth? But the vital question is, How much of the quality of love have I developed? How great is the likeness of my character to that of Christ?

LOVE IS THE PRINCIPAL THING

Why is this quality of love made so prominent in the Word of God? We answer, Because it is the first thing, the most important thing, the principal thing. It is the fulfilling of God's Law; and, indeed, the sacrificial love enjoined upon God's saints of this Age goes even beyond the requirements of the perfect law. But why is Love put first? It is not because God arbitrarily so placed it, not because He exercised His power of fiat and declared that it should be first. No. It is because no other quality of character is so lovely, so beautiful, so productive of happiness and joy, so great a blessing to all upon whom it operates. It is the very essence of God's character. "GOD IS LOVE!" This quality particularly represents His personality. While God is all-just and all-powerful, we do not say that God is Justice or that God is Power, but that God is Love. He uses His great Power only as Love dictates and approves. He uses His Justice only in fullest harmony with His glorious attribute of Love. Love is the mainspring of all His doings.

Whoever, therefore, would be God-like must be loving, must have love as the dominating quality of his character and his life. Love and righteousness are inseparable. Love is to continue to all eternity; and only those who become the active embodiment of this gracious quality of character will live eternally. Hence we see the paramount importance of its development in every life.

Next to our Lord's marvelous Sermon on the Mount stands this great homily on Love, recorded in the 13th chapter of 1st Corinthians. Both discourses teach the same lesson, but approach it from different standpoints. As pupils in the School of Christ, all the instructions of the Divine Word and the Divine providences in our lives are designed by the Lord to develop our characters and to influence our conduct in harmony with the requirements of Love. The Master said, "A new commandment I give unto you [the Church], that ye love one another." Since "Love is the fulfilling of the Law," and is "the bond of perfectness" in the child of God, no wonder we are assured from the Scriptures that "God is Love," and that "he that loveth not, knoweth not God!" Our Lord again declared that "this is life eternal--that they might know Thee, the only true God"--the God who is Love.

This noble quality of Christian character cannot be acquired instantly. It is a growth; and its development is the chief business, the chief concern, of every spirit-begotten child of God who would know God, who would win the great reward of life on the highest plane of existence and who would see our Father and our Savior [R5668 : page 116] face to face and dwell in their presence forevermore.

ALL ATTAINMENTS VALUELESS WITHOUT LOVE

In this wonderful discourse under consideration, St. Paul points out that this crowning grace of Love is the necessary quality to make any service acceptable to God. If Love is not the motive power controlling us, the greatest zeal, the finest rhetoric, or the richest eloquence, on behalf of Truth and righteousness would pass for nothing in God's estimation, and would bring no reward from Him. If love be lacking, great ability in expounding the mysteries of God, much study and great knowledge, would be as naught in winning the approval of the Lord. Even a mountain-moving faith would be valueless, if, looking into the recesses of the heart, the Father could see that love is wanting. The giving of all one's possessions to feed the poor or to spread the Gospel, if done without love as the moving impulse, would be powerless to bring us God's approbation. Death as a martyr would not be acceptable except it was undergone from love to the Lord and loyalty to His Truth.

Why is this? It is because all these things might be done through selfish motives--to be seen of men or to feed pride or to exercise the spirit of combativeness. Love must prompt all our service for God or all will be utterly without value--as "sounding brass and a tinkling cymbal."

THE SPECTRUM OF LOVE--ITS COMPONENT ELEMENTS

A college professor, commenting upon this word Love, said, "As you have seen a man of science take a beam of light and pass it through a crystal prism, as you have seen it come out on the other side of the prism broken up into its component colors--red, and blue, and violet, and orange, and all the colors of the rainbow--so St. Paul passes this thing, Love, through the magnificent prism of his inspired intellect, and it comes out on the other side broken up into its elements. And in these few words we have what one might call the spectrum of Love, the analysis of Love. Will you observe what its elements are? Will you notice that they have common names, that they are features which we hear about every day, that they are things that can be practised by every man in every place in life; and how by a multitude of ordinary virtues, the supreme thing, the summum bonum, is made up?

"The spectrum of Love has nine ingredients:
Patience--'Love suffereth long.'
Kindness--'and is kind.'
Generosity--'Love envieth not.'
Humility--'Love vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up.'
Courtesy--'doth not behave itself unseemly.'
Unselfishness--'seeketh not her own.'
Good temper--'is not easily provoked.'
Guilelessness--'thinketh no evil.'
Sincerity--'Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the Truth.'"

To the above we add three other ingredients:

Fortitude--Love "beareth all things,...endureth all things."
Trustfulness--Love "believeth all things."
Hopefulness--Love "hopeth all things."

We cannot agree with the professor that these graces can be practised by every man, in every place, nor that they are ordinary virtues. We must contend that these fruits as a whole cannot belong to the "natural man." He may indeed put on some of the gentleness, some of the humility, some of the courtesy, some of the patience, some of the kindness, as men may attach grapes to thorn bushes or figs to thistles; but with the natural man these graces are wholly put on, and not the outgrowth of the inward grace, the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Love. They are not an evidence of relationship to God. Where the individual has not been begotten again by the Word of Truth and by the Holy Spirit, his imitation of certain outward manifestations of love will not constitute him a son of God nor bring to him the rewards and blessings of sonship, to which there is only the one Door--Christ Jesus.

And with the Christian a mere outward manifestation of patience, meekness, etc., is not sufficient, either in God's sight or in his own sight. These rich fruits are produced only by the indwelling Spirit of love in his own heart. In civilized countries many of the fruits of the Spirit are recognized by the unregenerate as desirable traits and are imitated, as marks of good breeding. In many cases they are successfully worn as a cloak or mask, covering hearts and sentiments quite antagonistic to the Spirit of Love.

WORLD'S IMITATION OF LOVE AN OUTWARD VENEER

While even an outward imitation of the fruit of Love mitigates to some extent the evils and distresses and frictions incident to man's fallen condition, yet it is only a veneer, as times of stress and trial often manifest in a painful manner. We remember a report which we once read of a conflagration at a certain Charity Bazaar in Paris, which showed that the most polished and aristocratic young gentle-men of the most polite city and nation of earth displayed the ferocity of brute-beasts when face to face with death, and that in their mad rush to escape the flames they knocked down and injured each other, and treated thus even ladies of the first rank in France, to whom they had just before been overly polite. We cannot expect more of a love-veneered, selfish heart--even the strong glue of chivalry will not hold the veneer under such circumstances.

The time is now very near when a far greater and more terrible crisis will make manifest to the whole world that much of the politeness and gentleness of our day is only skin deep, and is not from the heart, not the fruitage of the Holy Spirit of Love. In that great crisis, every man's hand will be "against his neighbor and against his brother," as the Word of the Lord graphically portrays. In that great Day of Vengeance, the masks of formal politeness and chivalry will be discarded, and the world will for a short period get such a revealment of its own hideousness and selfishness as will horrify it and will help to prepare it for the blessed Kingdom of Love then to be established by the great Immanuel, the Messiah of God. And this great Day of Vengeance has already begun.

DRAWN BY LOVE DIVINE

The Scriptures inform us that in our fallen estate unselfish love is foreign to our natures, and must be introduced into them by the Power of God. The Apostle says, "Not that we loved God, but that He loved us, and sent His Son to be the Propitiation for our sins." As we learn of this great love of God, and accept the conditions which He has made for our return to Him, through His Son, the love of God constraineth us to love in return.

The measure of our appreciation of Divine Love will be the measure of our zeal in conforming our characters to the Divine pattern. A naturally rough, uncouth, depraved disposition may require a much longer time after the grace of Divine love enters his heart, before that grace is manifest in all the words and thoughts and acts of the outward man. Others of more refined nature, of gentle birth and cultured training, might even without the grace of God within have many of the outward refinements, so that as a Christian his outward conduct might be much more pleasing. None save He who reads the heart is competent to judge as to who has and who has not this quality of love well developed in his character. We will now take up the various elements of Love.

ANALYSIS OF LOVE'S COMPONENT ELEMENTS

Love is patient--it is longsuffering with the weaknesses [R5668 : page 117] and imperfections of those who give any evidence of good intentions. Moreover, it is patient even with those who are out of the way, and who oppose themselves to righteousness and Truth, realizing that the whole world are more or less under the influence of the great Adversary and his demon host, who blind the minds of the masses. This manifestation of love was very prominent in our Lord Jesus. How patient He was with His opponents! Let us heed the Apostle's words in his Epistle to the Hebrews, "Consider Him that endured such contradiction of sinners against Himself, lest ye be wearied [in well-doing and patience] and faint in your minds."

Love is kind in its methods. It not only seeks to do good, but seeks to do it in the kindest possible manner. In proportion as love is attained the effort of the heart will be to have every word and act, as well as the thought which prompts them, full of kindness. Love is tender, affectionate. It has a real and deep interest in others, especially the brethren in Christ. We do well to remember the motto of the old Quaker: "I shall pass through this world but once. Any good thing, therefore, that I can do, or any kindness that I can show to any human being, let me do it now. Let me not defer it or neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again." This sentiment is especially applicable in the Church of God.

Love is generous, and has no place for envy, which, on the contrary, springs from a perverted nature--from selfishness. Love rejoices with them that rejoice; it rejoices in the prosperity of every good word and work, and in the advancement in Christian grace and service of all who are actuated by the Spirit of God.

Love is humble--it "vaunteth not itself." It does not sound a trumpet before it. Its good deeds are not done to be seen of men, not done to be praised of the brethren, but would be done just the same if no one should see or know but the Lord alone. It is boastful neither of its knowledge nor of its graces, but in humility acknowledges that every good and perfect gift comes from the Father, and returns praise to Him for every mercy received. Love seeks rather to keep self in the background. Some one has truly said, "Love saves a man from making a fool of himself by consequential conduct, and by thrusting himself into positions which betray his incompetence."

Love is courteous--"doth not behave itself unseemly." How beautiful is this trait in the child of God! How much pain is caused by the lack of courtesy, of that thoughtful consideration for others which springs from real love in the heart--love that is trained! Pride and selfishness are at the root of most of the unseemly conduct and boorishness so common to those who think themselves somebody, either intellectually or financially. Perfect love, on the contrary, manifests courtesy along with humility. Politeness, courtesy, may be defined as love in the little things.

The secret of real courtesy is love. A gentleman or lady is one who does things gently, thoughtfully, kindly, lovingly. A true Christian, then, should be a gentleman or a lady in the most real and perfect sense. To ignore the little courtesies of life as unnecessary is a serious mistake in a child of God. A kind greeting, a pleasant smile, little acts of thoughtfulness for others--who has not realized their potency or felt pain from the lack of these?

UNSELFISH, SWEET TEMPERED, SINCERE

Love is unselfish--"seeketh not her own," exclusively or pre-eminently. It never seeks to take advantage of others or to promote its own selfish interests. It goes out to others, and seeks to promote their comfort and happiness. It does not desire to grasp the best of everything for self, nor to have the chiefest seats or the most attention or the highest honors, but rather prefers others in honor, and is willing in cheerfulness to take the lower place. Put into practise, this phase of love--unselfishness --has a great influence for good upon all the affairs of life, in the home, in the Church of God, everywhere.

Love is good-tempered--"not easily provoked." Among the evils abounding today is that of ill-temper, fretfulness, bad humor, touchiness, quickness to take offense. To whatever extent this disposition is fostered or willingly harbored, and not fought against, it is an evidence of a deficiency and a lack of development in the Spirit of God, of deficiency in likeness to Christ, our Pattern.

Very few of the evidences of a wrong spirit receive as much leniency and as many excuses for its continuance as does this fault. However much natural weakness or nervousness may tend in this direction, every true member of the Body of Christ must surely vigorously oppose this disposition to be irritable, fault-finding and morose. He must fight this tendency of his fallen flesh, must wage a good warfare against it in the strength of the Lord. The imposition of a penalty upon one's self for every outbreak of irritability or of unlovely temper would soon bring greater watchfulness over the tongue and over the unloving impulses of the old nature. Few traits of character more truly glorify the Lord than sweet temper.

Love is guileless. It "thinketh no evil"--does not surmise evil. It seeks to interpret the actions, words and manners of others charitably. Being pure and well-intentioned itself, it endeavors so far as possible to view the words and the conduct of others from the same standpoint. It does not treasure up animosities and suspicions, nor manufacture a chain of circumstantial proofs of evil intentions out of trivial matters. "Faults are thick where love is thin," is a wise and true saying. Love makes all possible allowance for errors of judgment rather than impugns the motives of the heart.

Love is sincere--"rejoiceth not in iniquity." It is grieved by evils wherever encountered, but is sympathetic toward all who fall into evil through weakness or who are beset by temptations. In this respect love prompts to an opposite course of action from that of Balaam, who "loved the reward of iniquity." Balaam, it will be remembered, feared the Lord, and as His prophet could not think of doing otherwise than according to the strict letter of the Lord's injunction; but he did not have the spirit of obedience and loyalty, the spirit of love; and hence when a reward was offered him if he would curse Israel, he was willing, in order to secure the reward, to conform to the evil proposition, if only the Lord would permit him.

So there are some Christians who have a respect for the letter of the Divine Word through fear, but who lack the Holy Spirit (disposition) of love, and who by reason of a love for wealth or popularity or ease, etc., are willing to engage in various practises which come as near to injuring the Lord's Cause as possible without being in open opposition to Him. Some of these Balaams are in the ministry; and for the sake of salary and prestige and the friendship of wealthy Balaks, they are willing to preach doctrines which they do not believe, to wink at unholy practises, and in various ways to cast stumbling-blocks before Spiritual Israel, and encourage others so to do. Both our Lord and the Apostles mention these Balaams as being false teachers in the nominal Church. See 2 Peter 2:15; Jude 11; Revelation 2:14.

Every one who is seeking to develop in his heart the Holy Spirit, perfect love, should guard this point of sincerity [R5668 : page 118] of motive as well as uprightness of conduct. The least suggestion of rejoicing at the fall of any person or thing that in any degree represents righteousness and goodness is to be deplored and overcome. Perfect love rejoices not in iniquity under any circumstances or conditions, and would have no sympathy, but only sorrow, in the fall of another, even if it should mean his own gain.

Love "rejoiceth in the Truth." However profitable error might be, love could take no part in it, and could not desire the reward of evil and error. But it takes pleasure in the Truth--truth on any subject, but especially the Truth of Divine Revelation, however unpopular it may be, however much persecution its advocacy may involve, however much it may cause the loss of the friendship of this world and of those blinded by the god of this world. The spirit of Love has so strong an affinity for the Truth that it rejoices to share loss, persecution, distress, or whatever may come against the Truth and its servants. In the Lord's estimate it is all the same whether we are ashamed of Him or His Word; and of such He declares that He will be ashamed before His Father and the angels. Love has no sympathy with hypocrisy or pretense. It is transparent and honest in character.

STRONG, TRUSTFUL, HOPEFUL

Love is strong--it "beareth all things." It is both willing and able to endure, for the Cause of God, reproaches, reproofs, insults, losses, misrepresentations, privations, and even death. "This is the victory that overcometh the world, even your faith"--the very center and life of which faith is the holy spirit of love to the Lord, to them that are His, and of sympathetic love for the world. Perfect love can bear up under the most trying circumstances and conditions which the Lord shall permit to come upon His children, and by God's grace come off "more than conqueror through Him that loved us and gave Himself for us."

Love is trustful--it "believeth all things." It is not suspicious, but on the contrary is disposed to have confidence in others, so far as possible, and to give them credit for sincerity. It acts on the principle that it is better if necessary to be deceived a hundred times than to go through life soured by a distrustful, suspicious mind--far better than to accuse or suspect even one person unjustly. This is the merciful disposition applied to thoughts; and of this disposition the Master said, "Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy." The unmerciful mind and heart, ready on every slight provocation or imaginary one to think evil of others, is father to unmerciful words and conduct toward others.

Love is hopeful, buoyant--it "hopeth all things." It is not easily discouraged. Hope is the secret of Love's perseverance. Having learned of God, and having become a partaker of His holiness, it trusts in Him and hopes undismayed for the fulfilment of His gracious Covenant, however dark the immediate surroundings. This hopeful element of love forms one of the striking features in the perseverance of the saints, enabling them to "endure hardness as good soldiers of Jesus Christ." Its hopeful quality hinders Love from being easily offended or easily stopped in the work of the Lord. Where others would become discouraged and put to flight, the spirit of love gives endurance; for its anchor of hope is fastened securely "within the Veil." It holds firmly to the Rock of Ages, and hence cannot drift into despair.

Not only is Love the greatest of all the graces, but really, as we have seen, it is the sum of all the fruits of the Spirit. It is everlasting--"Love never faileth." It is for those who develop this quality to its glorious perfection that eternal life has been provided. And those who possess the sacrificial love which our dear Master possessed, who so love as to gladly lay down their lives for the brethren, will gain the fullest and grandest life of all--Divine life.--2 Peter 1:4.

THE EDITOR'S PROPOSITION

Let us then, dear brethren, more and more cultivate love, remembering that whatever else may be our attainments, all will be in vain without this crowning grace. The Editor has a proposal to make to every reader of this journal, which he believes will prove very helpful to each one who shall co-operate. It is this: That during the remainder of this year (if we shall be spared so long in the flesh) each of us pray every morning that the Lord will bless us in the cultivation of love, in thought, in word, in deed, throughout the day; and that every evening, in reviewing the events of the day at the Throne of Heavenly Grace, we remember to report to the Lord respecting our measure of success or failure.

Then note the results of your watching and praying; keep on the lookout for all encouraging evidences of growth in this fruitage of the Holy Spirit; and when you write us, if you please, mention your progress in willing to love, and in practising it. We shall be especially glad to know of your growth along this line.



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THE WHITE RAIMENT OF THE KINGDOM

"He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot his name out of the Book of Life, but I will confess his name before My Father, and before His angels."--Revelation 3:5.
IN THIS text, as throughout the Bible, the thought is maintained that the elect class, who will receive the highest glory, honor and blessing from the Lord, must demonstrate their loyalty by overcoming. It is not sufficient that there shall be an overcoming of the will at the beginning of the Christian career, but subsequently there must be trials and testings endured, and these must be met in an overcoming manner. The consecration having been made, and the trials and testings having begun, the individual yielding under those temptations and testings, and continuing to be overcome by them, would prove that he is not sufficiently loyal; for the Lord has promised that His grace shall be sufficient in every time of need.--2 Corinthians 12:9.

Although the Lord's grace is sufficient, this would not mean that we might not sometimes fall into temptation. We might fall into temptation inadvertently, without the consent of our wills, and "be overtaken in a fault." But the Lord's grace is sufficient to bring us out of the temptations as overcomers, enabling us to triumph over them. [R5669 : page 118] Falling into temptation does not mean falling in temptation --falling when tempted. But when one is temporarily overcome, whether it be a yielding to a temptation of the flesh or whether it be a wilfulness of spirit, or mind, has much to do with the nature and degree of the sin. We may not always be able to triumph fully, completely, according to the flesh, but the will must be loyal. We must triumph in the mind, otherwise we shall not be overcomers.

This overcoming is a gradual work, progressing throughout our Christian course, from the moment of [R5669 : page 119] consecration down to the conclusion of life. But the text apparently takes hold of the conclusion, rather than the beginning or the middle of the work, and implies that the individual has at the end of the trial, the end of his race-course, this overcoming degree of righteousness, so that he may be classed as an overcomer. Such an overcomer will be clothed in white raiment.

WHITE RAIMENT LOANED TO US

The Scriptures give us to understand that at the very beginning of our Christian experience, we figuratively are clothed in white raiment. This white raiment represents justification--we are justified freely from all things. It is a robe without a spot. It is sometimes spoken of as Christ's robe of righteousness, because it comes to us through Christ. It is to be had only through Him. He is able to impute to us, to loan to us, grant to us temporarily, this robe. It is spoken of as the wedding garment. At an oriental wedding, a wedding garment of white linen was used to cover over the clothing worn by each guest. It was loaned to the guest at the wedding by the host, when he appeared at the wedding-feast.

White linen signifies purity. So when Christ gives us the use of His merit, it is as a white garment to cover out imperfections. It is an imputation of His righteousness, which is to us justification. We are exhorted to keep our garments unspotted from the world. The imputation of righteousness given us, we are to preserve, to maintain. But we cannot fully maintain it of ourselves. Our tongues may sometimes say things that we wish they had not said, and our hands may sometimes do things we would not desire. Hence, God has provided a way by which our blemishes or transgressions may be eradicated--those not wilful. This way is our daily application for the cleansing of these unwilling transgressions, through the precious blood. Thus we keep our garments unspotted from the world. Thus our justification, our white robe, is maintained --should be maintained.

WHITE RAIMENT OUR OWN

But it is not sufficient that we have the imputation of our Savior's righteousness. This imputation is only a temporary arrangement. We need to come to the place where we shall have a righteousness of our own. Our flesh is imperfect; as St. Paul says, we cannot do the things which we would. In spite of our best endeavors things are bound to go more or less wrong. But we are to prove ourselves overcomers--"more than conquerors." The Lord has arranged that at the conclusion of our trial, at the end of the present life, all the overcomers shall receive the new body. This new body will be a body of actual purity. Thus, as the Apostle says, we shall "be clothed upon with our House which is from Heaven." So our raiment will be changed from a garment of imputed perfection, our justification by faith, to that which represents actual perfection. At the resurrection we shall receive that body of inherent purity, without blemish, without spot, which is here pictured as "white raiment."

"BROUGHT BEFORE THE KING"

Furthermore, we read of each of these that the Lord "will not blot out his name out of the Book of Life," in which are written the names of all those who become truly the Lord's people, those who have made with the Lord "a covenant by sacrifice," all who renounce their wills, who present their bodies a living sacrifice. The name of each of these is recorded, entered in the Lamb's Book of Life, when he starts to live the new life, and to demonstrate his loyalty. Just as these are clothed upon with the robe of Christ's righteousness in advance of being actually tested, so their names are written in that Book in advance of being actually tested. If they do not remain faithful, their names will be blotted out of that Book of Life. But if they are faithful their names will not be blotted out of the Book of Life; and they will attain all those glorious things which are promised to those who love Him supremely.--Revelation 21:7.

More than this, the Lord says, "I will confess their names before My Father and before His angels." The intimation here is that the overcomers will have such characters that the Lord will not be ashamed of them, but will be pleased to own them in the presence of the Father and the holy angels. We are to be "changed from glory to glory," into the likeness of our Lord. (2 Corinthians 3:18.) In the end, these overcomers will each be so grandly developed that the Lord will not be ashamed to confess any of them and to say, Here is one of My followers. Here is another. They have walked in My footsteps and have overcome. But He will be ashamed of any who are ashamed of Him. Of such He says, "Whosoever shall be ashamed of Me and of My words, of him shall the Son of Man be ashamed, when He shall come in His own glory and in His Father's, and of the holy angels."--Luke 9:26.

It is not a matter of favoritism, but of character-development. If they will not endure to the end, if they do not prove overcomers, they will not be fit for the Kingdom and association with their Lord.

This brings up the thought that there is another class mentioned in the Bible--the Great Company class, as in contrast to the Little Flock--or the antitypical Levite class as in contrast to the antitypical Priestly class. The Great Company had their names written in the Lamb's Book of Life, but they were not overcomers in the truest sense. They did not stand faithful. Because of not proving faithful, they will not be confessed before the Father and the holy angels in the same sense as the Bride class.

It is stated that the Bride will be presented before the Father, and that "the virgins, her companions" (Psalm 45:13-15) will be there also--but the latter will not be confessed as the Bride class. We will not say that their names will be blotted out of the Lamb's Book of Life. Their names may remain. But those who go into the Second Death will surely have their names blotted out of the Book; they will be destroyed with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord.

ROBES WASHED IN "THE GREAT TRIBULATION"

The Great Company will not have the "abundant entrance" granted the Little Flock. And the same distinction obtains between these two classes in connection with the white raiment. While all receive the robe of Christ's imputed righteousness, some of them do not keep their garments "unspotted from the world." Their white raiment becomes spotted and soiled, bedraggled by contact with the earth. Their justification, or robe of Christ's righteousness, becomes unpresentable. When a spot comes upon it, instead of having the spot cleansed away at once, they allow it to remain, and the spots accumulate until their garment becomes quite soiled. Then at the conclusion of their course, when the examination day comes, their robe is found to be spotted--yet they wear it still. They are not divested of that robe of justification. They have not abandoned the Lord and He has not abandoned them. But they have failed to use the means which the Lord provided for their cleansing.

In the Revelation this class is spoken of as "a great multitude"--the Great Company. We are told that they "will come up out of the Great Tribulation, and will wash [R5669 : page 120] their robes, and make them white in the blood of the Lamb." Instead of doing a cleansing work day by day, maintaining their justification with God and being ready for the change (by means of their faithfulness) they are, on the contrary, found of Him as unworthy of this chief place. Their robes will not be taken from them, but they will be obliged to suffer great tribulations, with the view to making them ready to wash and make their robes white in the blood of cleansing, so that they, also, will be clothed in white and in their resurrection bodies will be pure. But they will attain this only by passing through "the Great Tribulation."--See Revelation 7:9-14.



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"LIGHT AFFLICTIONS" HERE--"GLORY TO FOLLOW"

"We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed; always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus may be made manifest in our body."--2 Corinthians 4:8-10.
THE Apostle Paul is here addressing the Church at Corinth, and in the larger sense addressing the entire Church of the Gospel Age. He is apparently describing to some extent the experiences of himself and those who were with him in his missionary labors. He traveled from place to place, but not as our pilgrim brethren now do; for sometimes he spent an entire year, sometimes more than a year, in one city. Nevertheless, he was a traveler, going about where other missionaries of the Lord had not gone, addressing the Jews and whoever else might give evidence of having a hearing ear. On these tours he took with him assistants. We are therefore to consider that his words here referred not only to the Apostles (for he was the only Apostle of the company), but also to the others with him; and that this Epistle, as are all the inspired writings, was designed by the Lord for the instruction and benefit of all the saints throughout the Christian Dispensation.

The Apostle's assistants were general ministers of the Lord, as are all God's children in proportion as they do a work of ministry. His words would seemingly be addressed, then, to all who are engaged in the Lord's service. In this Epistle he points out that there are differences in the services rendered--"He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully"--and also differences in the experiences of the various members of the Body of Christ. He says that some of them had been the objects of persecution and that others had shared in those persecutions by suffering with those so persecuted, indicating that the Lord recognizes and appreciates this association with those in distress, if there be such association.

This thought is brought out also in St. Paul's Epistle to the Hebrews. (Chapter 10:32-34.) If those not so actively engaged in the service are faithfully doing all that their hands find to do, the Lord is as appreciative of it as He is of those who because of greater ability or physical strength or opportunities are able to accomplish more--each doing to the extent of his opportunity the work of the Lord.

The Apostle said of himself and his companions, and of all those laboring faithfully in the service of the Master, "We are troubled on every side." There are many troubles that are common to the whole human family-- lack of employment, sickness, death, poverty, etc. There are multitudinous troubles which come to the world; and of course the Apostle and his companions were subject to these difficulties like other men. To many these trials of life bring distress. But while St. Paul and those with him had their ailments and difficulties, their persecutions and trials, they also had the knowledge of the Truth and the Lord's sustaining grace; and they were enlisted in the army of the King of kings. They were not distressed by their troubles, but were trusting in the Lord's precious promises that these should all work out for their good.

"AS HE WAS, SO ARE WE, IN THIS WORLD"

And so we are not to allow the troubles of life to distress us as they distress other people. We have something that others do not have--the Lord's assurance that everything in our lives shall be a bearer of blessing to us if we are faithful. This enables us to rejoice in tribulation, if we really believe this promise of our Father's Word. There are other troubles that come to the Lord's people, but do not come to the world. The world is more or less in opposition to those who are engaged in publicly preaching the Truth and to those who are associated [R5671 : page 120] with them. There is a battle on between right and wrong, light and darkness. The world, being attached to their darkness, feel an enmity toward the light, a hatred of it; and they are often disposed to give special trouble to those who are the Lord's representatives in a particular capacity.

Occasionally we find worldly persons who are of good heart and kind intention and who are desirous of helping on a good work; but these are exceptions. Our strongest opposition, however, comes generally, as did that of the Master, from those who are our brethren, though many of them are only nominally so. Then we have the Adversary particularly against us. It is true that the whole world have the oppositions of the Adversary, but he is especially active against those engaged in the public service of the Lord. Satan seems to bring before these special temptations, and it is not surprising that they should be the particular objects of his rage and of his wiles. But those who are thus engaged in God's service have special blessings at His hands, and extra fortifications. So while we may be sure that those in the public ministry have more troubles from the Adversary, they are also given more grace to cope with them.

OUR DEATH THE GATEWAY TO LIFE

"We are perplexed, but not in despair," says St. Paul. The Apostle and his company were not the only ones who have been at a loss to know just what to do. The whole world have been perplexed, and are particularly so today. The general anxious uncertainty of our day results in a large measure, it would seem, from the nerve-racking experiences of the present time. If people knew the right thing to do in respect to their business, their homes and their affairs in general, they would not be so full of doubt and bewilderment. But no one is wise enough to get along without some perplexity; and present conditions in the world are causing much distress and also anxious foreboding for the near future. Those who are engaged in the work of the Lord have some perplexity. But the anxiety or uncertainty of the Lord's people should never go to the length of despair. Those who are of the world, getting out of work and being in various difficulties, become very despondent. Frequently we hear of suicides. Things look very dark to people who take their own life.

It may yet be true of the Lord's people that things [R5671 : page 121] will look very dark; but they are not in despair, and will not be in despair whatever may come; for the Lord has said that He will never leave us nor forsake us. This gracious promise should give us a hope sure and steadfast. Our anchor of hope should hold.Our position, therefore, is very different from that of the world, who have no particular hope. The world have no solid anchor, no precious promises to hold them fast. We know that if the worst comes to the worst, if we should even die of starvation, our hope lies beyond the Veil, beyond death. Therefore God's saints of today look upon death as the gateway by which to enter into fulness of life, into a realization of all our hopes and joys. If, therefore, there is despair, it would prove that our anchorage has been cut loose. Whoever would find that he is in despair would find that he is letting go his faith, and should immediately seek counsel from the Word of God and from others strong in faith, and should go to the Lord in frequent and earnest prayer, assured that if faith is restored despair will go.

"I WILL NEVER LEAVE THEE"

"We are persecuted, but not forsaken." There are persecutions of certain kinds that come to those in the world. Sometimes their neighbors have a grudge against them, and they thus are more or less persecuted. But they have no effective means of dealing with such a matter and nothing to comfort them. Sometimes they give as good as they get. But in the case of one of the Lord's children it is very different. When we feel that justice calls for retaliation, then we should remember that it is not ours to retaliate, to return evil for evil. The Lord has told us that we should leave all matters relating to justice in His hands. "Vengeance is Mine, I will repay, saith the Lord." He does say that we are to run away from persecutions; therefore we are not to condemn those who run away as following a wrong course. We are told by the Master, "If they persecute you in one city, flee to another." So if a child of God is persecuted in one neighborhood and he can get away to another neighborhood, it would be better to go.

But though persecuted for righteousness' sake, the Lord's people are not forsaken. The world and those possessing the world's spirit may harass and buffet them, but the Lord does not forsake them. When persecutions come to us, however, we are to inquire, "Are these oppositions and persecutions coming to me on account of my loyalty to the Lord, or is it that there is something in my disposition which causes them?" If the latter is the case, we should diligently endeavor to rectify our fault. If, on the other hand, we find by careful scrutiny of ourselves and our conduct that we have been doing our best, our very best, and that the persecutions are coming to us on this account, then we are to rejoice in the persecution.

We are "cast down, but not destroyed." This expression shows that while the Apostle and his companions did not suffer despair, did not feel forsaken, they sometimes felt a heaviness of spirit. This heaviness of spirit, or feeling of loneliness and depression, is natural at times to all mankind under the adverse conditions prevailing in the world. The weight of this casting down may be accentuated to some extent by the condition of the physical health. Those who are weak or in pain physically are apt to feel any mental pressure or trouble. This is all to be fought against in the Christian; for we know that our afflictions and disabilities are something outside and not of the Lord, except in the sense that He permits them for our development, for our future work in the Kingdom. We are therefore to be of good courage. If the Lord permits us to have trouble, we are to exercise fortitude, to patiently endure, and not to allow it to destroy our faith or our happiness or our loyalty of spirit to Him to whom we have vowed allegiance.

We are to put up with whatever our Father permits, in sweetness of temper, and to say to ourselves, "This may be a good lesson to me. Perhaps these cast-down feelings, this feeling of desolation, may help me to sympathize more with others." The poet has truly said:

"Into each life some rain must fall,
Some days must be dark and dreary."
So let us see to it that we do not allow this feeling of depression to conquer us and to destroy our faith and energy; but rather, looking to the Lord for assisting grace, and claiming His precious promises, we are to rise above the difficulty and press bravely onward.

OUR "COVENANT BY SACRIFICE"

We are "always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus." The Apostle thus declares that the Lord's people, in proportion as they are faithful in His service, have a likeness to the Lord in their service, in their death. Our Lord's experience in the narrow way was three and a half years of dying. He was daily laying down His life--surrendering His life. He was an Example to us of how we should surrender our lives. He laid down His life, not in the service of the world, but of the Lord's professed people. While the merit of His sacrificed life was to be used of the Lord for the life of the world, yet He laid it down in the direct service of His Jewish brethren.

The Hebrew people were the people of God. Our Lord spent His life especially with those who were truly desirous of pleasing God and knowing His will, whether found amongst the rich and influential or amongst the poor and lowly. Jesus welcomed publicans and sinners, and gave His life for them. He knew that among this humble class He would find the greater proportion of true wheat. He was laying down His life during all the three and a half years of His earthly ministry, and merely completed this work at Calvary.

And so it is with all of the Lord's true people. They have made "a covenant by sacrifice." They have consecrated, dedicated their lives to the Lord and His service; and as Jesus their Master laid down His life in doing good, in proclaiming the Truth then due, so they are to lay down their lives in the same manner, whether the time of their ministry be three and a half years or twenty years or whatever it may be--until the Father's good time shall come for their deliverance. They will be in full harmony with the Lord and will gladly have fellowship in the sufferings of their great Head--and properly so; for they are prospective members of His Body. Thus all of these members are continually bearing about in the body the dying of their Lord. They are dying daily as He died, "laying down their lives."

"THEREFORE GLORIFY GOD IN YOUR BODY"

This is all the work of the New Creature. The old creature is merely compelled to follow in the way of the New Creature, and this setting aside of the will of the flesh is the basic feature of our dying. When our dying has been completed, our lives faithfully laid down, it will bring us to that condition where we shall hear the Master's "Well done!"

St. Paul also says that "the life of Jesus" is to be "made manifest in our body." We understand him here to be referring to the human body. The New Creature [R5672 : page 122] owns this body. With the people of the world there are not two personalities, but merely the one creature. This duality of personality is applicable only to those who have been begotten of the Holy Spirit. The old body is suffering; but the New Creature rejoices, glad to be in the service--gives thanks to God day by day respecting its tribulations, knowing that these are working out "a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory."

Thus the life of Jesus is manifested through us to the world, and to the brethren. The world cannot understand. They say, "If I were in your place, in such a trial, I would be miserable. But you are rejoicing!" So they cannot understand. But we have a newness of life that the world cannot appreciate. All who can appreciate this should daily grow in grace and knowledge. We should show forth more and more of the Lord's life in our characters and in our bodies. Thus we shall be manifesting more and still more of the Lord's Spirit, doing more of the Lord's work, becoming more like Jesus --all of which will prepare us for the glory beyond, when the New Creature shall be completed, when all the perfections and glories of the new nature will be ours.



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"TOUCH NOT MINE ANOINTED"
--MAY 16.--1 SAMUEL 26.--

KING DAVID'S TRYING EXPERIENCES--THE CAVE OF ADULLAM --KING DAVID'S NEPHEWS--WATER FROM BETHLEHEM-- DAVID TWICE SPARED KING SAUL'S LIFE--LESSONS OF THE HOUR.

"Love your enemies, do good to them that hate you."--Luke 6:27.
OUTLAWED and hunted by King Saul, young David had a varying career. He was soon joined by a class of unfortunates, justly or unjustly ostracized from society. Some of them doubtless were criminals; some were debtors, liable to imprisonment, who fled to preserve liberty, etc. At all events young David soon found himself at the head of a company of about four hundred men, more or less armed, more or less desperate.

It was a great training for him in preparation for his kingdom work later on. It gave him an inside view of the conditions of the ne'er-do-wells of society. Himself and his little army doubtless subsisted upon foragings, collecting a toll in the nature of a tax from the farmers. In offset to this toll, or tax, David doubtless defended them from the marauders who frequently came, not only from the Philistines, but also across the Jordan from Moab. Evidently up to that time no adequate police protection had been provided by King Saul's government. Instead of guarding the interests of his subjects properly, the king was mad with jealousy against his faithful servant David, and from time to time instituted pursuits of him, much after the manner of hunting expeditions for wild beasts in the forest.

Amongst those who came to David were three of his nephews, sons of his sister. These afterward became very prominently identified with King David in all his work. One was Joab, who became the captain of the host, or general. Abishai and Asahel were the two others, men of ability, who afterward became renowned in the kingdom.

DAVID'S NOBILITY OF CHARACTER

For a time David and his company had the cave of Adullam as a stronghold. It is greatly to his credit that he refused to plunge his nation into civil war, as he would have been abundantly able to do. Evidently the majority of the people would have sided with him from the first, and his victory over King Saul might have been easily accomplished. And how easily he might have deluded himself into thinking that such would be God's will! He remembered that the Lord, through the Prophet Samuel, had anointed him to be the king; but he remembered also that it was not for him to take possession, but to abide God's time, when Divine Power would overthrow Saul's kingdom and give the control to himself as Saul's successor as king.

How blessed it would be if all of God's people would thus remember to wait upon the Lord! "Wait ye upon Me, saith the Lord, until that Day when I rise up to the prey." The Lord's times and seasons are best for us, and any attempt on our part to push ourselves in advance of the Lord's will would be sure to react unfavorably. It was because David was thus full of faith in God and possessed of the spirit of obedience to Him that he was called a man after God's own heart--not that he was perfect--not that he always did the Lord's will, but that the Lord's will was his real heart's desire; and whenever through weakness of the flesh he took a different course, he was prompt to repent on seeing the mistake, to implore Divine forgiveness and to change his course.

Joseph Parker, commenting, says, "There is no straining of the meaning in discovering in all this picture a type of the position of Jesus Christ in the world. He was despised and rejected of men; He had not where to lay His head; and the people who immediately surrounded Him were characterized by unaccountable expectations, personal inferiority, social degradation, and also by needs of every description; surely it was no valiant or brilliant host that gathered around the Son of God whilst He tenanted this Adullam cave which we call the earth."

While sojourning with his followers at the cave of Adullam, David, in a fit of home-sickness, referred to the fine well-water of his Bethlehem home, intimating how much he would relish it if he could have it here. Thereupon three of his faithful followers, one of them his nephew, undertook the perilous journey, unknown to David. It was perilous for two reasons: first, they were outlaws from King Saul; second, Bethlehem was in the hands of the Philistines at the time; but notwithstanding these difficulties these brave men manifested their love and loyalty to their leader, and brought a water-skin from the favored well.

When they arrived and presented it to David, he showed a wonderful loyalty of heart. Not only did he appreciate the great devotion that they had shown, the risk that they had run and the water that they had brought, but he declared it was too precious and gotten at too great a cost to be lightly used. He poured it forth upon the earth in oblation, a sacrifice of thanksgiving to the Lord for the blessings they were enjoying and for the comfort and support of such loyal associates. Surely the greatness of David and his devotion to the Lord and his faith were well manifested again in this transaction! It marks him as more than an average man--a noble man.

TRAINING FOR KINGDOM WORK

By this time David and some of his followers were at a place called Nob, where Ahimelech the priest showed him kindness. King Saul, learning of this through a spy, slaughtered all the priests of that place and all of their lineage, eighty-five persons. This brought to David one of the sons of Ahimelech with the priestly ephod. One of the prophets had also joined David. All of this helped [R5672 : page 123] to make David's position the more secure, and to convince Saul all the more that God's favor was departed from him. Nevertheless Saul continued to fight against God and His Divine Program.

Under these circumstances David's forces gradually increased to the number of six hundred, increasing his experience also and preparing him the better for his coming work. As Bishop Wilberforce remarks, "A mighty training lay in that wild outlaw life for the knowledge and government of men. Nothing but the completest personal supremacy could hold such unruly elements under any species of command; and David, the unwilling head of such a following, learned in mastering them the secret of governing men and of knitting together their discordant hearts into an harmonious unity."

Every now and then King Saul would become feverish for the destruction of David. On one of these occasions, David and his company were occupying a cave amongst the bleak rocks on the west side of the Dead Sea, when King Saul, with probably a good-sized company, pursuing David, entered the same cave for rest and refreshment-- for how long we know not. Kitto tells us that some of these caves are quite large enough to shelter fifteen hundred men. Another writer remarks, "A traveler indeed tells us that in one of them, which lies some twenty miles from En-gedi, no fewer than thirty thousand people once hid themselves. These caverns are dark as midnight. One can see outward clearly, but to see four paces inward is impossible."

David and his associates were further back in the cave; and when Saul and his company entered it to rest, the desire of David's band was that Saul at least should be killed, and that thus the trying experiences of them all might be ended and that a just recompense should be made for the evils the king had done and was doing. But David would not consent. Instead, however, he cut a piece from King Saul's robe as a demonstration that the king had been fully within his grasp, and that he could have killed Saul had he chosen--as a demonstration, too, of his loyalty to the king.

Then, when the king and his company had gone a certain distance so that there was no danger, David and his associates showed themselves and protested that the king was not appreciative of the loyalty of his subjects, and that he was seeking their lives when they would not take his. Saul's better nature was aroused; and he wept, saying, "Thou art more righteous than I." And for the time, the hunting of the outlaw David was abandoned with the promise that he would never do so again. Nevertheless, our lesson tells of another similar experience a little later on. [R5673 : page 123]

On this occasion David, with his nephew alone, went into Saul's camp and took away from beside his head his spear and his royal water-bottle. Departing with these, they from a distance on an opposite hill, a ravine between, could safely speak to Saul and his host and be heard. David pointed out to the king that he not only was more vigilant than Saul's soldiers, but that he was more loyal to the king's interests and that if a messenger were sent he would return both the spear and the bottle; that he wished no harm, but merely brought these away to further convince the king of his absolute loyalty; and that to pursue him as an enemy was a mistake.

Such an intrusion into the camp of a king today would be impossible because of modern methods of setting guards, pickets, etc., but not so in olden times, nor to any great extent in eastern countries today. We recall that Gideon and his band similarly invaded a camp. We recall Abraham's pursuit of the five kings, and his finding them enwrapped in slumber without proper picketing. A traveler of large experience in the East says, "The Arabs sleep heavily, especially when fatigued. Often when traveling my muleteers and servants have agreed to watch together in places thought to be dangerous; but in every instance I soon found them to be fast asleep, and generally their slumbers were so profound that I could not only walk among them without their waking, but might have taken the very covering from them."

A PROFITABLE LESSON

David's explanation of his unwillingness to take the life of his enemy was that Saul was God's anointed, and that to have made an assault upon him would have been to attack the Almighty's arrangements. This David could not conscientiously do. "Touch not Mine anointed, and do My ministers no harm."

It is well that we of today should have in mind this principle. We are not to think of the kings of today as being the Lord's anointed, however. They are their own anointed. Their kingdoms are kingdoms of this world. On the contrary, Israel was God's special kingdom, which He had accepted under a special covenant arrangement. By Divine authority King Saul had been anointed with special anointing oil, which typified the Holy Spirit. David's anointing with the same oil was not to give him a right to interfere with the Lord's anointing previously accomplished in Saul, but to give him the assurance that he was to be the successor of Saul, not by his removing Saul, but by the Lord's giving the possession in His own time and way.

Although the coins of all the kingdoms of earth represent that their rulers reign and govern as representatives of Messiah's Kingdom, we know that this is a mistake. Messiah's Kingdom has not yet been established. We are still praying, "Thy Kingdom come."

EARTH'S FIVE UNIVERSAL EMPIRES

When God removed His typical kingdom from the earth, the Message to the last king, Zedekiah, was, "This shall not be the same. I will overturn, overturn, overturn it; and it shall be no more until He comes whose right it is and I will give it unto Him." Thus was intimated an interregnum, as far as Divine rulership in the world was concerned, from Zedekiah's time until Messiah's Millennial Kingdom. Meantime, however, God did give the Gentiles an opportunity to show what kind of kingdom they would be able to establish in the world. From the days of Zedekiah, 606 B.C., to the present time, we have had four distinct kinds of government, and the fourth one modified in a deceptive manner. These kingdoms were (1) Babylonia, (2) Medo-Persia, (3) Greece, and (4) Rome. The present governments of Europe are the Roman Empire under a new gloss, or pretense. Their laws, methods and ambitions are the same as those of the Romans exactly; but deceiving and being deceived, they style themselves Christian kingdoms; and by common consent the whole world is accustomed to speaking of these as Christendom--that is, Christ's Kingdom.

The Bible pictures this; and in the symbolic image which represented all these governments, the feet were of iron the same as the legs, but were smeared with miry clay to make them look like stone feet--stone being the symbol of God's Kingdom. So these kingdoms of Europe today at war and manifesting anything but a Christian spirit-- manifesting anger, malice, envy, hatred and strife, which the Apostle says are "works of the flesh and the Devil"-- these are the kingdoms which are claiming to be Messiah's [R5673 : page 124] Kingdom, and are represented in the feet of the image, colored like the Stone Kingdom, which is shortly to fill the whole earth.--Daniel 2:31-45.

Messiah's Kingdom is pictured as "a stone cut out of the mountain without hands," without human power; and it, in the days of these kings, represented by the toes of the image, is to smite the image and grind it to powder; and the stone is to become the great Mountain, or Kingdom, of the Lord in all the earth. This smiting, we believe, is near at hand, the present war of Europe being intended of the Lord to weaken the nations and to prepare them for the next stage of trouble, the great earthquake, which in symbol signifies revolution.

Following the revolution quickly, is to come the great symbolic fire which is to destroy the present order of things entirely. This fire represents anarchy, the overthrow of all rule and authority. Thus God is allowing man to prove to himself that his best attainments are but imitations and ultimately lead to disaster. The lesson learned, all mankind will be ready for Messiah's Kingdom, which will then be ushered in and be "the desire of all nations."--Haggai 2:7.



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KING SAUL'S LAST BATTLE
--MAY 23.--2 SAMUEL 2-5.--

DISTRESSED, HE ASKED AID OF THE WITCH OF EN-DOR--DECEIVED BY EVIL SPIRITS--THE BATTLE LOST--SAUL AND JONATHAN SLAIN--THE SONG OF THE BOW, OR SAUL'S DEAD MARCH--DAVID KING OF JUDAH--THEN OF ALL ISRAEL.

"Jehovah is my strength and my Shield; my heart hath trusted in Him, and I am helped."--Psalm 28:7.
TODAY'S STUDY covers an interesting period in the history of Israel and in the experiences of David, the beloved of God. Persecuted and hunted by King Saul, no place was safe for David. The Philistines, desiring him for a friend rather than a foe, gave to David and his followers the city of Ziklag. While residing there, David's conquests were over the Amalekites, and never against the Israelites. He could not willingly battle against the Lord's people, though he felt free to fight against those whom the Lord declared were to be destroyed because their wickedness was come to the full, to the limit of Divine permission.

Meantime, the end of Saul's reign was nearing. A fresh invasion of the Philistines required all the army he could muster, and then he felt very dubious respecting the results. Although as king, in harmony with the Divine regulation, he had ordered all witches, wizards, and all who claimed to communicate with the dead to leave the land of Israel, nevertheless there were some here and there remaining. In his extremity, seeing the Lord would not answer him, King Saul visited the Witch of En-dor--said by some to have been the mother of the king's chief general, Abner.

The witch, after being assured that it would not work ill for her, got into communication with the fallen angels, who she supposed, as spiritualists still suppose, were the spirits of the dead. Doubtless she was honest, and thought it was Samuel that was called. But the Bible assures us that "the dead know not anything." Samuel was sleeping with his fathers, waiting for the resurrection morning, and could give no counsel, could know nothing about matters going on.

The evil spirits, however, in that time as well as now through mediums, personated the dead and, using their superior knowledge, answered as instead of the dead. The questions having been propounded in this case, the answer was that the king would lose the battle the next day, and that himself and his sons would be slain.

We do not know how the fallen angels know so much about the matters of our race, but we do know that it is unwise for any to have any dealings with them; for the Lord has forbidden it. Their sole object is to deceive the people; and, according to St. Paul, through dreams and revelations they have brought into the Church various doctrines of devils (1 Timothy 4:1), which, becoming incorporated in our creeds, like the fly in the ointment, have made them to stink.--Eccl. 10:1.

Happy would it be for people if they realized what the Bible so clearly teaches; namely, that the dead are dead and can give no information of any kind, that they have neither joy nor suffering, but are simply in a state of suspended animation, awaiting the Dawn of the better Day in which Immanuel, Messiah, will bring the knowledge of the glory of God to all as the result of His Ransom-Sacrifice at Calvary. The teaching that the dead are more alive than they were when they were alive is not only senseless, but contradictory to the Lord's Word, and has become the foundation of all the various grievous errors which have distressed the reasoning faculties of Christian people. None would pray for the dead, or say masses for them for their release from Purgatory, if they knew that their dead friends were merely sleeping until the resurrection morning. [R5674 : page 124]

But, worst of all, this theory that the dead are alive has become the foundation of serious blasphemies against God, in which all denominations are more or less joined as represented by their creeds. These blasphemies consist in declarations respecting God's character and Plan which would be a disgrace to any devil, and are far from the character and attributes of the God of all grace, the Father of all mercies, from whom cometh down every good and every perfect gift.--James 1:17.

"THE SONG OF THE BOW"

When David heard of the results of the battle, his sympathy for Saul and for Jonathan was expressed in a beautiful poem, which is remarkable for the fact that it contains not a single suggestion of how Saul had persecuted him or sought his life. It compliments Saul for what good he had accomplished. It tells of the tender love of Jonathan, surpassing that of women. This ode is recorded in 2 Samuel 1:17-27. The Dead March from Saul is an attempt on the part of the musician to put the sentiment of David's Song of the Bow for Jonathan and Saul into the music of our day; and thus it has become identified with the funeral services of the great today.

In the battle Saul's sons were killed, including Jonathan. Saul himself was wounded. Fearing that if he should fall into the hands of the Philistines alive they would torture him to death, he desired his armorbearer to slay him, and finally suicided with his own sword.

A young Amalekite, thinking to curry favor with David, and knowing something of how he had been persecuted by Saul, brought him the news of the death of Saul and gave him Saul's crown and the bracelet that was on Saul's arm, telling that he had dispatched King Saul at the latter's request--probably, however, manufacturing this part of the story to bring honor to himself. At all events, David received the matter in a totally [R5674 : page 125] different way from what was expected, saying to him, "How wast thou not afraid to stretch forth thine hand to destroy the Lord's anointed?" David then commanded him to be put to death. But for Saul and Jonathan he mourned until evening.

David waited upon the Lord those many years, fully confident that in the end he should be the king of Israel, but not hastening the event in any way, simply standing ready for the responsibilities and the power of the office where the Lord should put him. What a wonderful example we have in David's course! How much Christians can learn of patient waiting for the Lord's time in all their affairs--not only waiting for the Kingdom while they pray, "Thy Kingdom come," but also waiting for the Lord's leading and providence in all their affairs, overruling them all for good! It is one of the too frequent mistakes made by Christians, that they overlook the Lord's providence and promised supervision of their interests, and attempt to do for themselves, often to their own disadvantage.

David realized that the time had probably come for himself and his companions to move from the Philistines' country, and he inquired of the Lord by the priest and the ephod. The answer was that he should go into Judea. Next he made inquiry, Into which city? and the answer was, Hebron. Thither David and his companions removed with their families; and the tribe of Judah, his own tribe, promptly recognized him as their king. It was over seven years after this, however, before he became the king of all Israel. Meantime, one of the sons of King Saul, Ishbosheth, had survived; and Abner, Saul's chief general, had him anointed king of Israel. King David of Judah made no attempt to coerce the other tribes, but continued his waiting for the Lord's due time.

Meantime, however, Abner gathered an army against David's servants, and a fierce battle ensued, in which David's forces were the victors; the others lost the fight. Finally Abner, angered with King Ishbosheth, proposed to David that he would become David's vassal, and would assist in turning the hearts of all the Israelites toward him. King David appreciated the proposition, doubtless considering it to be the Lord's will and in harmony with the Lord's promise. However, the matter did not so carry out; for Joab, David's nephew, the chief man of war, slew Abner deceitfully. Again we see David's conduct in contrast with the average sentiment of his time. Instead of rejoicing in the death of Abner, the king mourned for him, and denounced his nephew for the wrong course he had pursued. He was courageous enough in the presence of his own ablest soldier to extol the virtues of Abner as a great soldier, saying, "A mighty man has fallen in Israel."

KING OF ALL ISRAEL

But a little while after this, others, misunderstanding King David, slew King Ishbosheth and brought his head to David as an evidence of his death, expecting doubtless that they would be rewarded. On the contrary, they also were condemned. They had slain the king. They were esteemed worthy of the same punishment, and were themselves slain. Thus did the people see exemplified in David's course principles of righteousness quite uncommon in his day, and we might say, uncommon still. All these things served to endear to the people the king, who, they perceived, was not merely self-seeking, narrow, but was broad-minded and even generous toward his opponents, his enemies. He seems to have had a great appreciation of justice and also a breadth of sympathy for his enemies.

King David was thirty-seven years old when finally the eleven tribes sent a delegation to confer with him, indicating that they would appreciate having him as the king over all Israel. This was seven years and a half after the death of King Saul, and probably about seventeen years after David had been anointed first by Samuel. Faith and patience mark every step of those years and show us King David's character as we could not otherwise have known it. Its grandeur was chiefly shown in that it manifested a devotion to God and a submission to the Divine will.

The king's acceptance as king of all the tribes of Israel marked the third time that the holy anointing oil was put upon his head.

Meantime King David had grown stronger and stronger in conquering his enemies--the enemies of the Lord--those whom God declared should be destroyed. We remind our readers afresh that the Lord declared that the iniquity of the Amorites had come to the full, and thus indicated it to be His will that they should be destroyed from the earth. Whether destroyed in battle or by pestilence or famine, mattered nothing to them, as the Divine sentence of death must be carried out.

However, all the while that God has been permitting sickness, war, famine, pestilence, death, to reign in the world. He has been preparing for human redemption, human salvation through the great Redeemer. Messiah's Kingdom is soon to take control of the earth, to cause a cessation of the reign of Sin and Death, to cause the binding of Satan and to cause the sunlight of Divine Truth to flood the earth. Then all the blind eyes will be opened and all the deaf ears will be unstopped, to know, to understand the true God, His true Message.

Meantime, those who died by Israel's sword will know nothing of the lapse of time. They will awake in the Millennial Kingdom, when all that sleep in the dust of the earth will awake. They will then be under the most favorable conditions we could ask for them--freed from the shackles of ignorance and superstition, with Messiah's Kingdom ready to help them out of their weaknesses and degradation back to human perfection, lost in Eden, redeemed at Calvary.



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RETURNING TO BUSINESS

SOME of our dear readers very commendably arranged their affairs some time ago so as to give their entire time to the Harvest work, not anticipating the prolongation of the Harvest--the gleaning work, the burning of the tares, the threshing of the wheat, etc. Moreover, many of them used in the Harvest work nearly all of their surplus of this world's goods--striving to lay up treasure in Heaven. Some of these dear Brethren and Sisters have nearly or quite gone to the limit of their possibilities, as far as present arrangements are concerned. They are, properly, looking about them to see the leadings of the Lord's providence in respect to their future operations. Will they plunge into business so deeply as to have little time for spiritual things? Will they become identified with some kind of speculation, and, perhaps, get others involved in what ultimately would be a loss? Or will they look for something to do in a quiet way that will enable them to meet expenses, possibly being able to continue to some degree in the gleaning work of the Harvest? The latter is our expectation and, we believe, in accord with the Spirit of the Lord--the spirit of a sound mind.--2 Timothy 1:7. [R5670 : page 126]

Let us call to mind the great disappointment of the Apostles in connection with the Redeemer's death. Up to within one day of His crucifixion they had thought that His remarks respecting death, crucifixion, etc., were figurative language, and that in reality He was about to be exalted to power and great glory. The experiences of that time must have been a severe test upon them in every way. Our Lord's resurrection the third day revived their hopes, although His appearances in miraculous manner indicated some wonderful change which they could not understand; but afterwards they learned that it was because He was no longer a man, but a perfected New Creature of the Divine nature.

Then came the long interval between appearances--for weeks at a time they saw nothing of Him, heard nothing from Him. Anxious, disappointing days!--their faith and patience weakened. Finally, utterly discouraged, St. Peter took the lead in announcing his determination to give up all thoughts of further preaching and to return to the fishing business. He announced, "I go a fishing." Promptly his former partners responded, "We also go with thee." (John 21:3.) Here were seven principal disciples, abandoning the great work to which they had been invited of the Lord--but doing so in their perplexity, with hearts as loyal as ever.

Evidently this was the occasion Jesus had waited for. We know of no other reason why He should remain forty days before ascending to the Father. He allowed the disciples to go back to their former business and to meet with discouragement. The very first night "they toiled all night and caught nothing!" Poor men! They must have felt as though everything was going against them. However, Jesus was watching over them all the while and purposely permitting them to come to this crisis, so that He might teach them a great lesson--and us through them. The lesson was that He was able to overrule all of their affairs, and that they should firmly trust Him, come what might, so long as they were loyal and following His directions.

Discouraged as to confidence in their own abilities as business men, they were ready in the morning to see Jesus on the shore and to accept His invitation to breakfast with Him from fish already cooked on the fire --from whence came the fish and the fire they knew not. These things were provided by miraculous power, as was the body of Jesus in which He appeared to them and the clothing He wore on it. Jesus said little to them, except to St. Peter--"Feed My sheep, feed My lambs, if thou lovest Me." The Apostles took the lesson and returned again to the preaching of the Gospel as the main business of life. The Lord's blessing was with them. He provided for them according to their needs, although it was sometimes in prison; sometimes in fasting and hunger, nakedness and peril. He gave them of His best for their development as New Creatures.

We do not wish to draw a parallel here and suggest that all the Brethren should abandon earthly affairs, as did the Apostles. We are not Apostles. There were only The Twelve. We are not to expect that we would have as important a work to do, nor that the Lord's providences would be so markedly exercised on our behalf. We are, however, to remember the Master's statement, "One is your Master, even Christ; all ye are Brethren!" While the Apostles were more important Brethren than we, still we are Brethren; and One is our Lord, or Head, and we have all one Father. The Divine promises assure us that all things shall work together for good to us, because we love God and have been called according to His purpose and are seeking to make our calling and election sure.

The lesson we do suggest is that the Divine Plan has not changed. The Harvest surely is not ended. The great Time of Trouble has already begun. Although it is necessary for us to provide things decent and honest in the sight of all men, we are not to forget that our chief business is that of ambassadors for God--representatives of the Lord Jesus Christ--proclaimers of the Good Tidings of great joy which eventually shall be to all people. We are never to forget that we are to seek first, chiefly, the Kingdom of God and the righteousness which it stands for and inculcates.

This is to be our chief work, the chief aim of life for us. Everything else is to be secondary. We are to expect that the Lord will give us necessary wisdom and grace if we seek it, whereby we may serve Him with acceptance and still provide the things necessary for our bodily comfort, without entirely leaving the work. This would mean that we should watch and pray--asking the Lord's direction and then waiting to see which way His providences seem to direct our course. We should watch, also, against the wiles of the Adversary, who would seek to ensnare us in business or pleasure or whatever.

Our advice is that all of the Lord's people put the Kingdom and its interests first, in word, in thought, in deed--giving merely what time is absolutely necessary for the procurement of the things needful for our earthly comforts and the comfort of those dependent on us. Assuredly thus we would be following the example of the Master, pleasing to the Father and helpful to each other. Thus we would be examples to our neighbors, as well as be preparing ourselves for the Kingdom.



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INTERESTING ITEMS

THE TYPEWRITER AND PROGRESS

Amongst the great inventions of our day is the typewriter. It came upon the market just forty years ago, in 1874, as a merchantable and usable convenience, after having been seven years in process of development. The Bible, we believe, marks that same year, 1874, as the beginning of the Harvest of this Age. What a wonderful forty years it has been! What wonderful blessings these years have brought to mankind! What evidence they give of the dawning of the New Dispensation, which the Bible teaches began there! Notice some of the great inventions--the telephone, electric light, trolley-car, perfecting printing press, cheap pulp paper, linotype and monotype machines, gas engine, automobile, aeroplane, talking machine, moving pictures, and a hundred other conveniences, improvements, etc., not forgetting the wireless telegraphy.

Great as are the blessings enumerated, none of them surely can compare with the great blessings that God has given to His consecrated people, who have in these same years been seeking the light of the New Dispensation in the Word of God. The blessing, joy and enlightenment which they have received is beyond all comparison and all valuation!


WAR HASTENING MILLENNIUM

If any one had suggested a year ago the possibility of total abstinence being established by law in Russia, Germany and Great Britain, he would have been considered idiotic. Truly

"God moves in a mysterious way
His wonders to perform."

Men, in the interest of war, are preparing to abolish intoxicating liquors. Russia already has done this. The report is that her millions of people are blessed greatly for the better--improved mentally and materially. Germany is already discussing the matter. The Prime Minister of Great Britain and the King favor total abstinence as a war necessity because the workmen are hindered by the use of liquor from accomplishing the work necessary to be done for the [R5675 : page 127] prosecution of the war. How wonderful this appears! Is the light of the Millennial Morning breaking upon the world?

Look again! Great Britain and Germany have been fearing Socialism and every way seeking to combat it as destructive of present institutions. As we have already pointed out many of the Socialists will be identified with the Millennial Kingdom. How strange to find that the great war now raging is tending toward Socialism--that while Socialists have joined the army the Governments at war are adopting socialistic measures!

For instance in Great Britain: Speedily after the declaration of war the British Government took over the control of all the railroads of the Kingdom, to facilitate the moving of troops and war materials. Now the British Parliament has given the Government full authority to take over the entire manufacturing business of Great Britain and place it under a central management, with a view to increasing the output of war materials. This bill, which passed on March 9th, the Hon. Andrew Bonar Law declared as a measure, "probably the most drastic ever laid before Parliament." It passed unanimously.

In Germany the Government's action has been no less drastic--the Government has absorbed all power. The extreme in this direction was the seizing of all food supplies and the doling of the same out to the people according to their needs, dictating the proportions of ingredients, the quantity to be eaten and the price to be paid. Could any Socialist imagine the principle for which he contends more fully put into execution--by those, too, who have opposed Socialism in the past?

How will it be when this war shall end? Will individualism and private ownership return to the control of affairs in Great Britain and Germany? If the attempt is made to restore them, will it not bring a clash? Will it not bring the great social earthquake which the Bible declares will immediately follow the war? And will not that social earthquake lead straight on to the fire of anarchy, as the Bible indicates? We so believe: We must with patience wait, nor attempt to hasten the Lord's arrangements. However, let us remember that the Lord declares that He will hasten these things at the present time and that a short work will He make of matters.

Speedily the glorious Kingdom will be established, even though it be through blood and earthquake and fire. How, then, will those feel who are deriding the thought that Messiah's Kingdom is in process of establishment--that this war is identified with its establishment and that it will be fully inaugurated in the midst of the fire of anarchy, which it will quench by bringing in the New Order of things--the new heavens and the new earth--the new ecclesiastical and the new social order--the doing of God's will on earth.



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MEMORIAL SUPPER REPORTS

We have excellent reports of Memorial celebrations this year. It would appear that everywhere it has been the same as here in New York--larger attendance and a deeper appreciation than on any preceding occasion. The New York City Congregation had a most impressive service at THE TEMPLE. It was good to be there! A spirit of sweet solemnity, confidence, rest, seemed to pervade the large gathering in The Temple's fine auditorium.

In harmony with our well-known suggestions, the different little Classes in the suburbs of New York held their own separate meetings for the celebration of the Memorial, even though they reckon themselves part and parcel of the New York and Brooklyn Congregations, and meet as one Church. The reports as to numbers participating show considerable progress during the past year. Quite a number partook of the emblems for the first time. Many of the new ones were more or less attracted to the Truth through the opposition which the enemy has been stirring up. The evil attacks led to examination; and the Truth was all the more beautiful and forceful in its contrast with the error. If the ministers of the various churches become more violent and slanderous they will, no doubt, awaken all of God's true saints and draw their attention more or less to the Truth. For a saint of God to come into contact with the Truth is almost like bringing a piece of steel into close relationship with a magnet.

Nor is the increase of numbers, of interest and of deep piety in the New York Congregation alone. Everywhere, so far as our reports go, the same principle seems to be applicable and the same results inevitable.

We subjoin reports from some of the Congregations already heard from. Compared with the reports of last year the showing is very fine.

Other reports from Memorial celebrations are coming in gradually. Although we have noted only those showing twenty-five or more in attendance, this does not signify that we are not deeply interested in having the reports from every celebration. Please send them in, therefore, as they become the basis of our judgment in other matters connected with the interests of the Classes.

New York City...............1119     St. Joseph, Mo...............  82
London Tabernacle........... 769     Allentown, Pa................  80
Forest Gate................. 368     Swampscott, Mass.............  75
Chicago, Ill................ 720     Grand Rapids, Mich...........  75
Los Angeles, Cal............ 445     Atlanta, Ga..................  71
Pittsburgh, Pa.............. 415     So. Chicago, Ill.............  70
Boston, Mass................ 415     Camberwell, Jamaica..........  70
Detroit, Mich............... 356     Hamilton, Ont................  70
Philadelphia, Pa............ 300     Youngstown, O................  69
Minneapolis and St. Paul,            Rockford, Ill................  67
  Minn...................... 266     Hartford, Conn...............  66
Toronto, Ont................ 259     Pasadena, Cal................  65
Seattle, Wash............... 256     Birmingham, Ala..............  64
Cleveland, O................ 240     Edmonton, Alta...............  64
Vancouver, B.C.............. 237     Newark, N.J..................  64
Portland, Ore............... 219     Tampa, Fla...................  62
St. Louis, Mo............... 203     Altoona, Pa..................  61
Washington, D.C............. 196     Memphis, Tenn................  61
San Antonio, Tex............ 185     Panama City, Panama..........  60
Cincinnati, O............... 185     Oklahoma City, Okla..........  59
Indianapolis, Ind........... 183     New Albany, Ind..............  59
Buffalo, N.Y................ 173     San Diego, Cal...............  58
Columbus, O................. 167     Norfolk, Va..................  57
Dayton, O................... 165     Omaha, Neb...................  56
Providence, R.I............. 159     New Haven, Conn..............  55
Kansas City, Mo............. 154     Schenectady, N.Y.............  53
Milwaukee, Wis.............. 153     Jackson, Mich................  52
Oakland, Cal................ 146     Bridgeton, Barbadoes.........  52
Toledo, O................... 145     Dallas, Tex..................  51
Victoria, B.C............... 119     Aurora, Ill..................  51
Baltimore, Md............... 118     Scranton, Pa.................  50
Louisville, Ky.............. 113     Troy, N.Y....................  50
Roseland, Ill............... 112     York, Pa.....................  50
Oldham, England............. 106     Cumberland, Md...............  48
Edinburgh, Scotland......... 102     Cromwell, Conn...............  48
Lancaster, Pa............... 101     Easton, Pa...................  48
Bellingham, Wash............ 100     Sharon, Pa...................  47
Spokane, Wash...............  98     Wilmington, Del..............  46
Houston, Tex................  96     Jacksonville, Fla............  45
Tacoma, Wash................  92     Akron, O.....................  45
Springfield, Mass...........  90     Reading, Pa..................  45
Richmond, Va................  87     Topeka, Kans.................  45
Binghamton, N.Y.............  82     Moline, Ill..................  44
Worcester, Mass.............  82     Wichita, Kans................  43

Des Moines, Ia..............  43     Harrisburg, Pa...............  30
Port Huron, Mich............  43     Pittsfield, Mass.............  30
Lawrence, Mass..............  43     Muncie, Ind..................  30
Johnstown, N.Y..............  42     Waterbury, Conn..............  30
London, Ont.................  42     Flint, Mich..................  30
Montreal, Que...............  42     Ottawa, Ont..................  30
Terre Haute, Ind............  40     Ft. Smith, Ark...............  30
Bloomfield, N.J.............  40     Paragould, Ark...............  30
Watertown, N.Y..............  40     Tonawanda, N.Y...............  30
New Castle, Pa..............  40     Newark, O....................  30
Camden, N.J.................  39     Colorado Springs, Colo.......  30
Joplin, Mo..................  39     Syracuse, N.Y................  29
Bay City, Mich..............  39     Kewanee, Ill.................  29
Passaic, N.J................  38     St. Petersburg, Fla..........  29
Knoxville, Tenn.............  37     Iola, Kans...................  29
Mattoon, Ill................  37     Chatham, Ont.................  29
Auburn, Ind.................  37     Brandon, Man.................  29
Chattanooga, Tenn...........  36     Johnstown, Pa................  29
Sidney, N.S.................  36     New Philadelphia, O..........  28
Santa Ana, Cal..............  36     Anna, Ill....................  28
Piqua, O....................  35     Kalamazoo, Mich..............  28
Crooksville, O..............  35     Tamaqua, Pa..................  28
Paterson, N.J...............  35     Owen Sound, Ont..............  28
Springfield, Ill............  35     Elwood, Ind..................  28
Saginaw, Mich...............  34     Haverhill, Mass..............  28
Boise, Idaho................  34     Zion City, Ill...............  28
Brockton, Mass..............  34     Magnet, Ind..................  27
Warren, O...................  34     Butler, Pa...................  27
Springfield, O..............  34     Boaz, Ala....................  27
Canton, O...................  34     Hobart, Okla.................  27
Sacramento, Cal.............  34     Beaumont, Tex................  27
Lima, Ohio..................  34     Norristown, Pa...............  26
Tiffin, O...................  33     Toronto, O...................  26
Van Buren, Ark..............  33     Brazil, Ind..................  26
The Dalles, Ore.............  32     Port Clinton, O..............  26
Glens Falls, N.Y............  32     Tulsa, Okla..................  26
Hollister, O. (Hung.).......  32     Calmar, Alta.................  26
Wheeling, W.Va..............  32     Fairmont, W.Va...............  26
Berne, Switz................  32     Lowell, Mass.................  25
E. Liverpool, O.............  31     Cortland, N.Y................  25
Chester and Moore, Pa.......  31     New Orleans, La..............  25
Jamestown, N.Y..............  31     Rosenberg, Tex...............  25
Duluth, Minn................  31     Madison, Wis.................  25
Kirkaldy, Scotland..........  31



page 128

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