The National Labor Tribune, December 25, 1905


Pittsburgh, Pa., Dec. 25. Pastor C. T. Russell preached at Carnegie Hall Sunday afternoon on the prophetic song of angels, from the text, "Behold I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord... Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men." Luke 2:10-14.

He said: It matters not that tomorrow is not the real anniversary of the Savior's birth, but probably the anniversary of the annunciation by the angel Gabriel, the anniversary of the virgin Mary's conception, our Lord being [NS278] born nine months later on the calendar, or about Oct. 1. One so great, whose birth, death and resurrection from the dead mean so much to the human family, may be remembered and celebrated any day, every day, by all those who appreciate what He has done for our race. Since, then, the majority of Christian people have become habituated to the celebration of Dec. 25 as our Lord's birthday we need make no protest, but join with all in celebrating that day with rejoicing of heart, giving gifts and remembrances one to another, thus copying divine favor, which gave to mankind the Son of God as a gift of mercy and love for our redemption.

For 4000 years and more the promise of God, clothed in more or less of obscurity, had been given to mankind, intimating that ultimately the great curse of sin and death which had come upon the world through Father Adam's disobedience in Eden would be rolled away, and instead of a curse, a blight, would come a blessing of the Lord with life-giving refreshment. In various types, figures and shadowy promises this lesson had come down through the ages to the time of our Lord's birth, especially among the Jews, who were the divinely favored and covenanted people.

And since the Jews were of a commercial spirit many of them were to be found in all parts of the civilized world; and thus among every people the faith in the one God and the hope of Israel through a Messiah was more or less made known, so that at the time of our Lord's birth we read, "All men were in expectation" of a soon coming Messiah. Doubtless this expectation was built upon the interpretation of Daniel's prophecy, which we now see clearly marked the year of our Lord's majority, when He was 30 years of age, and made His consecration to His work and received the begetting of the holy Spirit, His anointing as the great antitypical High Priest and as the great antitypical King over Israel and the world.


In olden times there were honorable and mean cities. Nazareth was generally recognized as one of the latter, while Bethlehem was distinctly one of the former – the city of David, Israel's beloved King. The Scriptures explain to us that Mary, our Lord's mother, and Joseph, her husband, were both of the lineage of David, and that in a seemingly accidental manner the prophecy was fulfilled which foretold that Messiah would be born in Bethlehem. – Mic 5:2.

The Roman Empire at that time bore rule over the whole world, the Jews being subject to it, but waiting expectantly, restlessly, for the coming Messiah, who would deliver them from being subject people and make of them the ruling caste in His kingdom, the dominion of the world. Rome's great Emperor, Caesar Augustus, was in power at this time, and had sent forth his decree for a polling or census of the whole world for purposes of taxation, etc.

Luke informs us that it was in response to this royal decree that Joseph and Mary went up to their native city to be enrolled, and that thus it was that Jesus was born in Bethlehem, and on account of the great concourse of people at the same time and for the same purpose, accommodations being scarce, the stable of the inn or khan was used by some as a lodging. Joseph and Mary, being of the latecomers, were forced to occupy these humble quarters, and thus it was that the King of Glory, whose kingdom is by and by to rule the world, was in the time of His flesh born in a stable and cradled in a manger.


Noble shepherds those must have been to whom the Almighty sent the angelic message respecting the birth of Jesus the Messiah which has come down through the ages and has reached our ears – the message which thrills us the more in proportion as we are able to grasp its meaning. First a single angel appeared to the shepherds and allayed their fears, saying: "Fear not; behold, I bring you good tidings." [Luke 2:10]

It would appear that fear is one of the dominating impulses of the human mind, especially in conjunction with any revelations from the Lord. Men realize – even the best of the race – that they are imperfect and that the Almighty and His laws are perfect. Instinctively the world seems to realize that a curse or condemnation of the Almighty rests upon it, and instinctively it fears a further curse and further condemnation, realizing the continual and increasing sinfulness. The same is true today with all except the comparatively few who are well informed respecting the divine character and plan. Thus the subject of religion is generally obnoxious to the world in general – a subject which they prefer to avoid because of a feeling of guilt and a dread of further knowledge of condemnation.

It is for the true children of God today as it was for the angels at that time to assure the world that God is better than all their fears – that God so loved the world as to redeem them from the just sentence of death, the curse that came upon all as inheritors of Adam's imperfections and sentence. "Good tidings" is another translation of our word gospel. How beautiful the thought that the gospel is really and truly good tidings! Alas! for the misrepresentations of God's plan under which so many of His true people misrepresent His character and His Word and apply the term gospel to their various messages from the Dark Ages, teaching purgatory and eternal [NS279] torment as the portion of the race. Let us get away from this false thought and get the truth that the gospel is good tidings. The angel elaborated, saying that his message was "good tidings of great joy, which shall be unto all people." [Luke 2:10]

Ah thank God, His plan is wider and deeper and higher and grander than anything we had ever conceived. The gospel message is not merely to be good tidings to the comparatively few that now have ears to hear and eyes to see its beauties, but in God's due time it is to be good tidings of great joy to all people. As every member of Adam's race shared in his fall and in the curse of death which came upon him as a result, so every member of the race was included in the great redemptive sacrifice which our Lord Jesus offered and which was finished at Calvary. God's plan in Christ, as it is being worked out and shall ultimately be accomplished, will mean great joy for all people, and the tidings of this were given at the very moment of our Lord's birth, because He was the one through whom all the glorious things of the divine purpose and plan shall ultimately be accomplished.


The message took cognizance of the fact that it was to reasonable people, who would want to know why the unchangeable God, who had once pronounced a curse, should at any time so amend and alter matters as to supplant the curse with a blessing. The messenger states the philosophy of the divine plan, "Unto you is born this day a Savior, which is Christ (Messiah) the Lord." [Luke 2:11]

There we have the key to the entire Gospel statement of how God could be just and yet now be the justifier of sinners who accept Jesus. The word Savior here signifies life-giver, and how beautiful is the thought that as death is the wage of sin, the curse upon the race, this Messiah who was born is to be the one who will rescue the race from the sentence by giving them life again. The explanation of how He would give life was not given, nor was it necessary at the time; but now, in the light of developments, and with the explanations furnished through the Spirit in the New Testament we see how that our Lord's voluntary sacrifice of His life, dying the just for the unjust, settled the claims of divine justice against Adam and thus incidentally against all who shared his sentence. Truly the more we see of the divine plan for our salvation, which began to take shape in the birth of Jesus, the more we feel like shouting with the angelic choir praises to the God of heaven, thankfulness for His mercy to the children of men.

It mattered not that the babe born in Bethlehem was the Savior only in prospect; that He could not even be anointed to do His work until He reached manhood's estate 30 years later; it mattered not that even then it would be necessary for Him to lay down His life gradually through three and a half years of His earthly ministry, to be finished at Calvary; it mattered not either that the resurrection was still three days after that, and His ascension 40 days later, and that the blessing in general would be deferred for nearly nineteen centuries thereafter. As the angels could sing and rejoice at the first budding of the divine plan of salvation, so also can all who have faith in the ultimate outcome, rejoice with joy unspeakable and give praise to God in the highest and to His Son our Lord.


Although nearly nineteen centuries have rolled away since that angelic message was delivered, it has not yet been fulfilled except in a limited measure by faith to those who have the eye of faith and the ears of faith, in all a "little flock."

But the tidings of great misery for nearly all people has been spread abroad in the name of Christ, much to the discredit of the divine plan and to the dishonor of the divine character. Instead of carrying joy the message has very generally carried grief and sorrow, especially to the kind-hearted and more generously disposed. Indeed, we may say that no message of the Lord Jesus, either the true or the false, has ever reached all people. Even today, after nineteen centuries of propaganda, only a comparatively small portion of the human family have ever heard of the only name given under heaven and among men whereby we must be saved – "nor is there salvation in any other." Acts 4:12

What then shall we say of the salvation which is come to those who have truly accepted Christ as their Savior and who are today rejoicing in him as such, and who by faith are seeing the salvation of God begun in their own hearts and yet to be fully accomplished under the whole heavens? This the Apostle calls the "salvation by hope."

His words are: "We are saved by hope." (Rom. 8:24)

We are not saved actually; we are still surrounded by sin, pain, sighing, crying and dying; the curse is not yet rolled away. All the best of the Lord's people have received this salvation by hope, by faith. Yet this anticipation of the future salvation, of the resurrection from the dead, of a participation in the glory, honor and immortality of the divine nature promised to the faithful is so strong, so clear, that those who possess it are enabled to rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory, even in the midst of trials and difficulties and weaknesses and unfavorable conditions incidental to the curse which still rests upon the race.


Yes, the angelic message was a prophecy of good [NS280] things to be accomplished for the Church and the world during the Millennial age. The Church is to have the first blessing. The first resurrection is to be composed only of the blessed and holy who shall live and reign with Christ during the millennium, the thousand years in which Satan shall be bound, and when the good influences of truth and righteousness shall enlighten the whole earth. The declaration of the Scriptures is that the deliverance of the Church will come early in the morning of that Millennial day, as the prophet declares, "God will help her early in the morning." Psa. 46:5

But much as we rejoice in the glorious hopes of the Gospel set before us who now see, who now believe, who now rejoice with joy unspeakable, we are glad that the divine mercy and love are of such lengths and breadths and heights and depths as to encompass the whole world of mankind and to provide a blessing for every member of Adam's race through Him who loved us and bought us with His precious blood. It will be during the Millennial age that this prophecy of the angel will have its fulfilment, and the great Savior who has already redeemed us by his sacrifice will stand forth as the King, the glorified Messiah and establish His dominion of righteousness in the world for the blessing and uplifting of every member of the race. In harmony with the words of the Apostle, those will be times of refreshing, "times of restitution of all things spoken by the mouth of all the holy prophets since the world began" (Acts 3:19-21)

If the Lord has based the hope of the world upon some works of merit or righteousness of the world's doing then, indeed, we might have feared – indeed, the more we know of the world the less hope we would have. But, on the contrary, the Lord has based the entire proposition for the future blessing, not upon our worthiness but upon the worthiness and sacrifice of His Son. To you is born a Life-Giver, which is Messiah, the Lord. How it adds to our enjoyment of the coming blessings to know that the trials and difficulties of this present time are for the Gospel flock that is now being gathered in advance from amongst men – the "elect," the Church.

We see how the present trials and difficulties are the chiselings and polishings necessary to our development in the fruits and graces of the holy Spirit in the character-likeness of God's dear Son, our Lord, our Hope, our Bridegroom. How joyful the thought that soon the elect number called from the world to be the bride, the Lamb's wife, will be completed and enter into her glory. How precious the thought that they shall be privileged with the Lord and Master to extend the divine favor of blessing and uplift to the world. What higher honor, or privilege, or blessing could possibly come to any?


It was after the giving of the message of good tidings of great joy by the heavenly one that a host of angels appeared to the shepherds, saying, "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will to men." This, too, is a prophecy. It has not yet been accomplished, but will be fulfilled in every particular in God's due time, which we believe is now nigh, even at the door. Not yet does God receive glory in the highest, not yet is there peace among men. Quite to the contrary. God's name is blasphemed, not only by those who vulgarly and in ribald jest take the divine name in vain, and not merely by the heathen who worship devils and think they are gods, but even by Christian people God's name is blasphemed every day. For be it known that blasphemy is any dishonorable misrepresentation of the character of another. God be merciful to us, but at some time or other doubtless everyone of us here present blasphemed the holy name in this manner – by misrepresenting the divine character and divine plan, by picturing the God of love and mercy and justice and truth as the originator, the planner, the perpetuator of the eternal torment of the great mass of his creatures, born in sin and shapen in iniquity, born to sin as the sparks to fly upward. But the Lord had mercy upon us because we did it ignorantly.

And we also should have compassion upon others who still ignorantly misrepresent our God, and our energies should be continually bent to their assistance, that the eyes of their understanding might open more widely to perceive the lengths and breadths and heights and depths and know the love of God which passeth understanding. Noting that peace on earth and good will to men have not followed the Savior's birth thus far, and in discerning that this is a prophecy of what is to be accomplished during the millennium, many have been inclined to change the translation of this verse so as to have it read, "On earth peace among men, in whom he is well pleased."

But even by thus changing it, the statement would not be true, for even the Lord's people have no peace on earth. Whatever peace they have is in their hearts, and based upon their faith in the Lord and in the glorious things which He has promised. Our Lord himself and the apostles testified to this, assuring us that whosoever in this present time would live godly should suffer persecution, that a man's foes would be they of his own household, etc. (2 Tim. 3:12; Matt. 10:36)

Let us not confuse ourselves nor abridge the testimony of the Word, but with the eye of faith look forward to the day of Christ, in which all these glorious [NS281] things shall have their fulfillment, in which peace shall indeed fill the whole earth with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord, bringing divine favor and rolling away the curse from the entire groaning creation, as pointed out by the Apostle. Rom. 8:22

Not even with the inauguration of the millennium will this prophecy be fulfilled; not until its close, when the human family shall have been lifted by the Kingdom regulations out of sin, sickness, pain, sorrow and death, up, to all that was lost in Adam – not until then will there indeed be glory to God in the highest, not until then shall there be peace among men. Nor are we to understand that the entire race will be appreciative of the divine love and favor even after they have fully seen the righteousness of God in Christ manifested. On the contrary, the Scriptures seem to clearly teach that there will be a class who will then prove unfit for life eternal, unappreciative of the divine favor, and it is with pleasure that we learn that all such shall be utterly destroyed from among the people in the Second Death.

Thus eventually, by the close of the millennium, Satan and all willful wrongdoers having been destroyed, the time Will come as declared in the Scriptures when all voices in heaven and in earth and under the earth shall be heard praising God. To Him that sitteth upon the throne and to the Lamb forever and ever, Hosanna! Glory to God in the highest; peace and good will to men will be the final shout of a redeemed race when the great plan of salvation shall have been fully outworked according to the divine plan set forth in the Scriptures.

The Pittsburgh Dispatch, January 8, 1906


Carnegie Hall, Allegheny, was crowded Sunday afternoon to hear Pastor Russell's discourse on the Resurrection of Life, and the Resurrection of Damnation. He took for his text the words of Jesus, "Marvel not at this, for the hour is coming in which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice and come forth; they that have done good unto the resurrection of life, and they that have done evil unto the resurrection of damnation." John 5:28,29

The doctrine of the resurrection of the dead, so prominent in the Bible, is one of its unique features, one of its internal evidences that it is not of human origin. Had the Bible been written fraudulently to deceive the people to establish a religion, it undoubtedly would have seized upon theories already entrenched in the human mind the world over, and would have avoided doctrines antagonistic thereto. On the other hand, since the world by its wisdom knows not God and discerns not his plan, it is entirely reasonable that we find this doctrine of the resurrection of the dead to be a part of the divine revelation and out of harmony with all human wisdom.


We might well inquire, as the Apostle Paul inquired of his hearers, Why should it be thought a thing incredible to you that God should raise the dead? (Acts 26:8)

Strange to say, however, it seems easier for the great mass of Christendom to believe the doctrine of heathendom on the subject of a future life than to believe the doctrine of the Bible. Heathendom teaches that life is inherent in man, that he can not die, that when he seems to cease to live he begins a new form of existence in some unknown and unexplainable manner, that he becomes more alive than ever when he seems to die. Strange to say, the masses of Christendom accept this untenable, unreasonable proposition of heathendom in the face of the Scriptural declarations to the contrary. To the majority it seems easier to believe that humanity never dies, even though it appears to do so, than to believe the divine record, "The soul that sinneth, it shall die," "The wages of sin is death."

"The gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord" – by a resurrection from the dead. Eze. 18:4; Rom. 6:23 If upon investigation we find that the Scriptures teach that death is a reality and not a sham, and that the entire hope of a future life is based upon the divine power and promise of a recovery by resurrection, we shall thereby be proving that the Bible is the one and only religious standard which takes this position, and its very opposition to the prevalent opinions of the whole world should constitute to us an evidence that its records, covering thousands of years, are not of human origin but divine, and accepting this fact we should give earnest heed to its teachings upon every other subject. Our Lord, in discussing the resurrection of the dead, declared that Moses' experiences proved a resurrection, when at the burning bush he heard the voice of God declare, "I am the God of Abraham and the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob." [Matt. 22:32]

The argument of Jesus is logical, that when God thus spoke of those who had been dead for centuries it implied [NS282] their resurrection at some future time, because, as our Lord expressed it, God would not declare himself to be the God of those who are out of existence. Let us remember that the argument here used by our Lord was in proof of a resurrection of the dead, and not a proof of a continuance of the life of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. He was discussing the resurrection with the Sadducees, who denied the resurrection and a future life. Matt. 22:23-32


Still earlier than Moses, Abraham and Job believed in the resurrection of the dead: the latter in his prayer to the Lord declares not only that he knew that his Redeemer lived and should stand upon the earth at the latter day, but declared also his faith in a recovery from the tomb, saying, "Thou shalt call and I will answer thee; thou wilt have respect unto the work of thy hands." Job 14:15

Of Abraham we also read that he had such faith in the Oath-Bound Covenant that he hesitated not to offer his son Isaac in response to the Lord's testing command, accounting that God was able to raise him from the dead. Abraham had not the heathen thought that if his son were slain he would go to heaven and be the better off; he realized the truth that the dead are dead, but he thoroughly believed in God's power, trusting for the resurrection of his son if, in obedience to the divine command, he died. We may suppose that this hope was built upon the Oath-Bound Covenant, because in that promise the Lord had said to Abraham, "In thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed." [Gen. 28:14]

This implied an awakening of all the families of the earth, for many of them had already fallen asleep in death before Abraham received this Oath-Bound Covenant of divine favor for all peoples.


We see the same lesson of faith in a resurrection illustrated amongst the Israelites in their care for the dead. The grave itself is a symbol of hope of a resurrection, else why preserve or memorialize those who have died, if we had no hope for our dead; or if we believed they have no life out of the fleshly body, and no hope of better and brighter continuance of life, then heathen's destroying that body by burning would be the reasonable one, if we so believed. But, wherever the teachings of the Bible have gone; wherever the resurrection hope has penetrated, there the grave and cemetery are to be found, rather than the funeral pyre and incinerating furnace. Not that there is hope that the same atoms of matter that once composed the body shall be reassembled in a new body; but that the new body which will be given the dead in the resurrection by the power of God, is memorialized by the old body, so long as it in any measure continues in our thoughts and tender affections long after it has gone to dust.


The Psalmist David exclaims, respecting the resurrection hopes, "I shall be satisfied when I awake in thy likeness." (Psa. 17:15)

But while the doctrine of the resurrection was tenaciously held by the Jews as their only hope of future life, it was necessarily a faith without a clear and definite foundation until our Lord's first advent and his sacrifice of himself as the redemption price for the sins of the whole world. Previously those who believed in a resurrection might well have asked, Why believe in a resurrection? If God wanted to keep mankind alive would he not have done so? If he has sentenced them to death as unworthy of life because of sin, what occurs during the time of their death which would lead to any change in the divine program that they might be restored to life?

However, after Christ's death, and after the explanation given by the apostles, that he died for our sins the just for the unjust, that we might be restored to divine favor, then an answer to their query was furnished. Admitting the fact that death is the wages of sin, the other fact is produced that Christ tasted death for every man, that he paid the penalty for Adam, and thus incidentally for the whole race, and that all thus might be judicially relieved from the sentence of death, as the Apostle Paul declares that "God might be just and yet be the justifier of those who believe Jesus." Rom. 3:26


The keynote of the New Testament is Jesus and the resurrection – the sacrifice of Jesus as the redemption price for our sins, and the resurrection from the dead, the release from the penalty of sin, as the natural, logical result. Thus Paul, when before the judgment seat of Felix, enlisted the interest of a large proportion of the mob around him when he declared, "For the hope of the resurrection of the dead I am called in question." (Acts 24:21)

The primary question was whether or not Jesus had risen from the dead. The Scriptural declaration is plain that God raised Him from the dead on the third day; that His soul, being, was not left in sheol, hades, the death state, the tomb condition, but raised up by divine power, so that our Lord was indeed the "first that should rise from the dead." (Acts 26:23)

Others, indeed, had been awakened from the sleep of death, but none previous [NS283] to our Lord was raised up out of death completely to the full perfection of life. This is the real thought in the word anastasis, translated resurrection in the New Testament. Many of the Jews in Paul's day had become Sadducees, or what we today would term materialists, total unbelievers in a future life by a resurrection or otherwise; others, but a small part, the Essenes, had accepted the heathen doctrines that death is not real, but merely a deception; but when the Apostle declared himself on trial because of his faith in the resurrection of the dead he instantly drew to his support the mass of the Jews, the Pharisees, and those who sympathized with their views, the scriptural view. And thus all through his preaching Paul, as well as the other Apostles, made prominent the resurrection hope of the church.

Note, for instance, the clear expressions of the fifteenth chapter of 1 Corinthians on this subject. There the Apostle distinctly avers that if there be no resurrection of the dead all Christian hope is vain, all teaching is vain, and the apostles and other teachers of Jesus and the resurrection were false teachers. "If there be no resurrection of the dead your faith is vain; ye are in your sins." 1 Cor. 15:14


One of the arguments of the Apostles on this subject he states in these words: "I have hope toward God, which they themselves also allow, that there shall be a resurrection both of the just and the unjust." (Acts 24:25)

We are thus assured that the divine provision, in its lengths and breadths and heights and depths, embraces not only those who during the present time, have heard of the grace of God and the redemption provided in Christ, but also for others, for all the remainder of the race, all the unjustified, all whose eyes have been holden by the ignorance and superstition and degradation incident to the fall and to the blinding influence of the adversary. Resurrection opportunities have been provided for all – and, more than this, it is in view of the divine favor yet to be extended to the unjust that there is to be a millennial age at all for their trial, for their testing, for their development, for their raising up, if they will, to full harmony with their Creator. The just, justified through faith, acceptable to God, need not the millennial age, need not the day of judgment promised in the scriptures. This we shall see more particularly in the examination of our text.


What the Apostle calls the just and the unjust, our Lord in our text calls the good and the evil. That neither the Lord nor the Apostle meant to intimate that any of mankind are good, perfect in the absolute sense, is most evident from the trend of the Scriptures, which assure us in various forms that the whole race is fallen, that "there is none righteous, no not one." (Rom. 3:10)

The good then of our Lord's statement, the just of the Apostle's statement, are those who are justified in God's sight through faith, justified from sin, their sins covered, not imputed to them, because of their having accepted the divine arrangement and because they are seeking to walk in the Lord's way. The Apostle explains the situation elsewhere, saying, "The righteousness of the law is fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh but after the Spirit." (Rom. 8:4)

These cannot walk up to the spirit of God's law, because of their inherited blemishes under the fall; but since these are covered by God's grace in Christ, such as are walking to the best of their ability after the spirit of God's law are reckoned as though walking up to the spirit of that law. In their minds they are up to the standard, and their flesh approximates perfection as closely as may be from day to day.

But if only these receive the life resurrection how few they are! How few you know and how few I know who are thoroughly regenerated, and who would even claim to be walking not after the flesh but after the Spirit. Only these few, therefore, need hope for a part m the life resurrection. All the remainder will have their part in what our text refers to as the resurrection of damnation. But, thank God, we find that a mistranslation in our common version has seriously beclouded the true import of our Master's words. We might say something in defense of those here listed as doing evil.

Many of them are heathen who know not God, whose eyes of understanding have never opened to a knowledge of the grace of God in Christ, and the hope there is before them of eternal life through the precious blood. Many of this class even in civilized lands could have something said on their behalf, as, for instance, that, although they have heard something respecting God and the Redeemer, what they have heard has not been good tidings of great joy to all people, but in the main the very reverse – bad tidings of great misery for all people. They have thus been deceived by the confusion which abounds in all the creeds of Christendom on this subject, as the Lord declares through the prophet, "Their fear toward me is not of me but is taught by the precepts of men." Isa. 29:13

Moreover, the entire race is mentally, morally and physically impaired through the fall, and God alone knows how to make proper allowances for these conditions as they bear upon the various members of our race. It is for this reason that He warns us that we shall not attempt a final judgment of one another. [NS284] "Judge nothing before the time." (1 Cor. 4:5)

When God's time shall come another judgment will be effected, no room for doubt will be left; every member of our race shall come to a clear knowledge of the truth that he may be saved, or, rejecting it, he may be destroyed from among the people in the second death. Acts 3:23


How our translators fell into the mistake of giving this (dreadful mistranslation of the word krisis is difficult to understand. Three times they have translated the word krisis in the context properly by the English word judgment, and this is what it should have been in our text. Those of you who have the revised version will find that it is rendered judgment in it. John 5:29

The Greek word here rendered damnation is crisis, and whether Greek scholars or not, you all know the meaning of the word crisis. Our English language absorbs words and phrases from all languages, and thus it has absorbed krisis from the Greek. We frequently use it, especially in connection with fevers. The physician when asked about the patient will sometimes say, on the fourteenth day or twenty-first day we will expect the fever to reach its crisis, and the decision for better or worse will be prompt. This is the legitimate meaning of the word crisis, wherever it occurs, and it is the meaning of it in our text. The crisis or judgment of the unjust will be reached at the time of their coming forth from the dead – in that day – in the Millennial day. An explanation here is necessary, because the majority of people seem not to discern between awakening or coming forth and a resurrection. Notice carefully that the implication of our text is that they who have done evil shall come forth unto or in order that they may have a resurrection by judgments. The coming forth is not the resurrection, but merely the awakening, such as Lazarus and others of that time had. They were not resurrected in the Scriptural sense of the term; they were not brought to the full perfection of life; they were not lifted completely out of death. Indeed the Scriptures in so many words assure us that Jesus was the "first that should rise from the dead." (Acts 26:23), that he "was the firstborn from the dead. Col 1:18

Those referred to as having done evil – that is, as not having come up to the divine standard of worthiness for the life resurrection – will include many fine, noble men and women who, like Confucius, for instance, had never even heard of the only name given whereby we must be saved, and it will include also the depraved characters who have never yet received their share of the glorious opportunity secured through the great atonement sacrifice for sin.

The intimation is not that these will all come forth at the same time, but rather that the awakening of the world during the Millennial age will be a gradual one, in the reverse order to which they went down to sleep in death. In other words, that Adam and his contemporaries will probably be among the last of the race to be awakened. Nor can we suppose that any of them will be awakened until the knowledge of the Lord shall have been well established among the living of the nations.


But we are specially interested in the resurrection which will be their privilege, their opportunity, after they shall have been brought forth from the tomb by the voice and call, the authority and power of our Lord. We notice the contrast between the resurrection promised to these and the promise to those who have passed divine approval. These are to have a resurrection by judgment. What does this mean? Notice first the meaning of the word resurrection in the Greek anastasis. It signifies to raise up again.

It implies that a thing was once up and got down, and is to be brought up again to the place where it originally was, if not higher. Applying this to the human family, we see that Adam was created perfect in the image of God; that by disobedience he came under divine condemnation and fell from that high position into sin, degradation, death, mental, moral and physical decrepitude and blemish – into absolute extinction, for such was the penalty, and from such extinction he was saved by the great atonement sacrifice of Christ, and because of this redemption he is not only to be awakened from the tomb under the favorable conditions of the Millennial age, with Satan and all evil under restraint, and the knowledge of the Lord filling and enlightening the whole earth, but he is to have the opportunity of coming back again to all that was originally lost. If we take the place of Adam himself we have no difficulty in seeing that he lost the image and likeness of God, mentally, morally and every way, under the sentence, "Dying thou shalt die," and that for him to be raised up again to what he was before would mean a wonderful blessing of restitution, restoration. Thank God!

We shall be glad to see Father Adam come back again to all that he lost. But more than this, although his children were born in sin and shapen in iniquity, as the Scriptures declare – although they never were on the mountain heights of perfection of life as he was – nevertheless they were counted in with him in his sentence, and are counted in with him also in the redemption accomplished by Jesus. Hence the uplift [NS285] that is coming will not only bring Father Adam hack to all that he lost, hut will bring all the willing and obedient of his children as well hack to the original perfection, to all that was lost. Those who will refuse to come back under favorable conditions, and the clear knowledge of that millennial day, will die the death not again on Adam's account, however, not the Adamic death, but on their own accounts; and this death for their own sins is scripturally called the second death "everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and the glory of His power." Rev. 20:14; 2 Thess. 1:9


Our text tells us that this resurrection will be by judgments, and we want to understand what this means. The apostle comes to our assistance, declaring, respecting the millennial age, "God hath appointed (a thousand years) a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom He hath ordained." (Acts 17:31)

He tells us further that when Christ shall judge the world in righteousness the Church will be associate judges. His words are, "Know ye not that the saints shall judge the world?" (1 Cor. 6:2)

We see, then, that the judgment of the world is separate from the judgment of the saints. That the judgment of the saints takes place during this gospel age is evident, and it will be after they have been judged and found worthy of the life resurrection, after the little flock shall be with the Lord as His bride and joint-heir in His throne and in the kingdom, that the judgment of the world will proceed. That judgment will not be accounting for present sins and weaknesses and failures.

Present wrongdoing, in proportion as it is committed against light and knowledge, makes its mark upon the characters of men at the time committed, and the characters thus broken down or depraved will be the more ignoble; and when the future awakening time shall come and the opportunity for restitution, then each notch of degradation will be that much more to be overcome in their attempt to work righteousness and to be obedient to the laws of the kingdom, the conditions of eternal life. Thus, indeed, every transgression of the present time will receive a full, just recompense of reward.

But this judgment which is recorded in the characters of men is not the judgment referred to in the Scriptures as belonging to the millennial age. The whole world will start in the millennial age on a footing of forgiveness under the terms of the New Covenant, just as believers by faith have such a justified start in their trial now during this gospel age. As our sins and iniquities are passed over by the Lord, so will also the sins and iniquities of the world be passed over not held against them for future tribulation.

But as our past wrongdoings still trouble us through the aggravated disorder and degradation of our mortal bodies, so with the world in their flesh, awakened in practically the same condition in which it went into death, they will have the harvest of the present life according to their degree of unrighteousness. When the Scriptures speak of the millennial age as a (lax or age or epoch of judgment of the world they are contrasting that time with the present time, thus: Now the Lord does not judge among men. Earthly prosperity is not proof of divine favor, and earthly adversity is not a proof of divine disfavor. On the contrary, as the Scriptures point out, it is "he that will live godly that shall suffer persecution" in this present time, while as for the wicked, "their eyes stand out with fatness, and they have more than heart could wish." (2 Tim. 3:12; Psa. 73:7)

The divine judgments are not now in the earth, but they will be everywhere manifest during the millennial age. We have already mentioned that the little flock, the over-corners, the Church, when glorified, will be judges of the world. Our Lord thus presents the matter in two of his parables – some shall have dominion over two cities an( l some over five. Let us suppose the millennial kingdom established and its rule to begin this very night: let us suppose that the city of Tampa has been placed under the supervision or judgment of Martin Luther or John Wesley; let us remember that of the glorified saints and their judgment it is written, "They shall not judge by the hearing of the ear nor by the sight of the eye, but they shall judge righteous judgment." Isa. 2:3-4


In his transformed condition as a spirit being Wesley, for instance, would be able to know all the affairs of this city, good and bad; able to read the hearts of all. Suppose he saw in one the purpose, the intention of robbery, and allowed him to go to the length of making every preparation, and then just before the committal of an overt act suppose he smote his hand with paralysis.

Suppose another crook about the same time attempted a confidence game and was smitten with blindness, and similarly with others. Suppose that, obtaining cures for these ailments, these same persons subsequently attempted other mischief, and again received a just recompense of reward for their wrong course. What think you would be the effect? I answer that the Word of God tells us what the results would be, saying: "When the judgments of the Lord are abroad in the earth the inhabitants of the [NS286] world will learn righteousness." (Isa. 26:9)

In a very short time the world would learn to rightly apply a proverb that is sometimes of doubtful application now, namely, "Honesty is the best policy."

From the moment that God's kingdom begins to exercise justice and power, from the moment the judgments of the Lord are in the earth, the world would have no further use for policemen and jails and prisons; the saints would be the judges, and all matters would come to them through prayer and through earthly representatives, respecting whom the Scriptures would be found very explicit had we time to examine them.

The world would thus speedily have an opportunity of coming to a knowledge and appreciation of righteousness, as now every member of our race has some opportunity for learning the disadvantages of unrighteousness, of sin working in themselves and in their fellows, working unhappiness, sin, sorrow and death. The future would teach all not only what righteousness is but what the joys of righteousness are, and each one accepting the situation and coming into harmony with God would begin at once to have a reward for every good endeavor, and thus to rise up, up, up in a social uplift, mentally, morally and physically, until by the close of the millennial age not only the living, but all in their graves having been awakened and come forth, would thus have experienced the resurrection, the raising up which the Lord declared he would accomplish for them at that time.

Only those who intelligently and willfully reject the divine arrangement will then be utterly destroyed from among the people in the Second Death.


The Lord speaking through the prophet (Dan. 12:2) declares respecting this coming forth from the tomb that some shall come forth to shame and everlasting contempt. The word everlasting here is an inaccurate translation, the Hebrew word signifies to an end instead of without an end. The thought would be more accurately rendered in English if "ever" were omitted.

The awakening of those who have not made good use of opportunities will certainly mean shame to them, and in proportion as they in the present life have gone downward instead of upward they will deserve and have the contempt of all the right-minded. We can imagine, for instance, Nero, the murderer of his own mother, the murderer of many of the Lord's faithful disciples, coming forth, his history known to the world, his own meanness of disposition recognized by himself – he would surely be an object of shame and contempt. Nevertheless, the great atonement sacrifice in redeeming the race included Nero, and he must have a share, an opportunity, for profiting thereby.

Whatever measure of light and knowledge he lacked previously he will surely get in the world to come, in the millennial age, when he shall have been awakened under the favorable conditions then prevailing. And his shame and contempt, thank God, may gradually be lifted, until he will be free from them, provided he shall be responsive to the blessed conditions of the time. He will have a hard road to travel because of his miserable use of opportunities in the past; but his shame and contempt will culminate either in his full acceptance of the divine blessing of restitution to perfection or in his utter destruction in the Second Death, and this illustrates the blessed righteous judgments which God has arranged for the day of Christ.

The National Labor Tribune, January 14, 1906


Johnstown, Pa., January 14.

Pastor C. T. Russell of Allegheny, Pa., addressed his friends of the public twice today here. His afternoon discourse was on the cure for infidelity – To Hell and Back. We report his evening discourse on God's Three Great Covenants with Men. His text was Gal. 3:29.

None get the scope of the divine plan as presented in the Bible who do not realize that Christians constitute Spiritual Israel, who, following the first advent, succeeded natural Israel as the heirs of the chief promise of God – the chief blessing – the chief covenant. This is clearly set forth in our text, "If ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed and heirs according to the promise."

We are not in this claiming that Christians, Spiritual Israelites, inherit all of the divine mercies and blessings. On the contrary, we hope to show from this discourse that while they inherit the chief blessing, Natural Israel has a share in divine mercy yet to be revealed; and not only so, but also all the nations – all the families of the earth. These blessings have come down to us from the one to whom the promises were made, father Abraham, who was not only the friend of God, and to whom [NS287] God first revealed something of the riches of his grace toward man, but he was additionally a type of God in a great system of allegories brought to our attention in the Scriptures – particularly in Galatians 4, just following our text. In this great allegory Abraham represented the heavenly Father; his wives, Sarah, Hagar and Keturah represented God's three great covenants; and the children of these three wives represented the three covenants.

The Apostle clearly points this out. Writing of Sarah and Hagar he says, "Which thing is an allegory, for these two women are two covenants, the one from Mount Sinai bearing children (fleshly Israel) unto bondage, which is Hagar," the other, Sarah, a free woman, whose son Isaac became Abraham's chief heir. The Apostle continues, "Now we, brethren, as Isaac was are the children of promise," Christ being counted in as the "Head of the Church, which is his body" – the antitypical Isaac. Keturah, whom Abraham married after the death of Sarah, represents the New Covenant, which will not go into effect until the death of the Sarah covenant, which bears Spiritual Israel, and which will die or become extinct when it shall have served its purpose in the development of Spiritual Israel. Gal. 4:22-28


The foregoing allegory shows indirectly that Abraham represents God after the manner of a type. Not exactly a type, however, because an antitype follows a type, whereas God was already in existence and was merely representing himself and his future work through Abraham – showing how eventually in his plan of salvation he would develop from the human family various sons of God under various covenants. This is stated by the Apostle, saying, "It is of faith that it might be of grace; to the end that the promise might be sure to all the seed (all the children); not to that only which is of the Law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the Father of us all, foreshadowing (allegorizing) him whom he believed even God." Rom. 4:16, 17

All Christian people recognize the general fact that God made a covenant with Abraham and his seed. This we sometimes designate the Oath-Bound Covenant, because it had no Mediator – it needed none, because it was unconditional. But it was attested or guaranteed by the divine oath.

All Christian people also recognize the fact that God instituted a Law Covenant with Israel at Mount Sinai, and that Moses was made the mediator of that Covenant, which was between God and the nation of Israel, and was sealed with the blood of the sin offerings, the mediator sprinkling the people with the blood as representing that they were bound by the Covenant, and sprinkling the book of the Law with the same blood as indicating that God was likewise bound by the provisions of that Covenant.

All Christians know additionally that the Lord has declared, "Behold the days come, saith the Lord, when I will make a new Covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah; not according to the Covenant which I made with their fathers in the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt ... For this is the Covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their minds and write them in their hearts, and will be to them a God and they shall be to me a people. And they shall not teach every man his neighbor and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord, for all shall know me from the least to the greatest of them. For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and iniquities will I remember no more." Heb. 8:8-12 Thus we see the three great covenants clearly set forth in Scriptural terms, aside from the allegories already referred to. Let us now take those up in their order and learn their import.


What the Apostle designates as the Sarah Covenant allegorized in the personal experiences of Abraham's first wife, is everywhere represented throughout the Scriptures as by far the most important of these three, because it included all the blessings of the other two. It was Sarah's son that was to be the heir of all things and through whom a portion was to be granted to the others of Abraham's children. It will be remembered that Sarah was barren for a long time, and that Isaac was born in her old age, and this typified the long interim between God's declaration of this original Covenant and the time when its first fulfillment began to appear in the manifestation of Jesus at the first advent. Then, as the Apostle points out, the prophecy began to be fulfilled – "Sing thou barren one that didst not bear, for more are the children of the desolate than of her which hath a husband." [Gal. 4:27]

This Covenant is not yet dead. It not only bears Jesus, the Head of the Isaac class, but the Church, the members of his body, for "Ye, brethren, as Isaac was are the children of the promise" – the Abrahamic Oath-Bound Covenant. For more than eighteen centuries this Covenant has been bearing its children, yet they are all one seed, one generation, one kind – the "New Creation" of God through Christ Jesus. The Sarah Covenant will not expire until it shall have brought forth the complete Isaac class, who will be the heirs of promise as the special seed of Abraham. This is [NS288] in accord with the promise, namely, "In thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed." [Gen. 28:14]

Whatever blessings are to come to the remainder of mankind, must all come through the members of this New Creation, the Church, whose Head is Christ. It must be completed before it can accomplish its work of blessing all nations. Various Scriptures seem to indicate that very soon this entire Isaac class of Abraham's seed under the Oath-Bound Covenant, already begotten of the Spirit, will be born in the first resurrection, changed in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, to be like their glorified Head, associated with him in the great work of his Millennial Kingdom.


The Apostle points out that the Law Covenant was added to the Abrahamic Covenant because of sin (as a restraint upon the people and as an educatory process) until the promised seed had come. (Gal. 3:19)

This was the Hagar Covenant of the Allegory – the Sinai Covenant, whose introduction with fearful sights at that Mountain fitly represented the terrors of the Law, its announcement of penalties against its every infraction. The Apostle in the Allegory pictures that as a bondage Covenant, and the Jews, represented by Ishmael, as also in bondage. The Apostle points out in his letter to the Romans that the Jews thought this Covenant was a great blessing, a great advantage to them; but while they supposed that it would give life everlasting, they found on the contrary that because they could not keep its absolutely just requirements, it therefore did not give them life, but sentenced them afresh to death as sinners, as violators of the divine law.

Thus the Apostle declares that the Law made nothing perfect, that by the deeds of the Law could no flesh be justified in God's sight, that the Law merely gave them a knowledge of sin, and did not point them to a way of escape from the sin. He declares that by giving the Jews the Law, God shut them up, as it were, to make them feel their need of deliverance through grace, which he ultimately intended to extend to them through Christ. The period of Ishmael's life prior to the birth of Isaac represents the period of Israel's history for over 1600 years from Sinai to Christ. Henceforth, as the Apostle points out, there was a conflict between the natural and the spiritual seeds, between the seed of Hagar and the seed of Sarah, between those who were merely under the Law and those who by the exercise of faith rose higher than the Law Covenant, and were accepted of the Lord under the original, the Abrahamic Covenant, which still existed.


As Hagar and her son were cast out with very limited provision for sustenance, so the Law Covenant and natural Israel – because of the rejection of Christ and the persecution of the Church, the body of Christ – were cast out, deprived of almost every element of divine favor. As Hagar and her son almost perished for lack of food and drink, so natural Israel in its castoff condition almost perished for lack of spiritual nourishment and refreshment. As in dire extremity Hagar finally cried unto the Lord and a spring of water was shown her that saved the life of her son, and as then she came back and was subject to Sarah, it teaches us that in the direst extremity of natural Israel's cast-off condition the Lord will graciously point to the true water of life and bring natural Israel back into relationship with himself, subject to and appreciating the higher Covenant then theirs, the Sarah Covenant, the Oath-Bound Covenant, under which they also will get a blessing.

In this we are not left to conjecture, and the allege is well backed up by the statements of the Scriptures. God's Word freely declares that in due time he who scattered Israel shall gather him, and that the gathering shall be from the ends of the earth back to divine favor and to a repossession of their old land. The entire matter is most explicitly set forth in Rom. 11:25-32.

There the Apostle explicitly tells us not only that Israel was blinded and cast off from God's favor, but that favor also is in reservation for them in God's due time. He indicates that the due time for favor to natural Israel will not come until the Gospel Church, the Isaac seed of Abraham, shall first have been developed and glorfied in the first resurrection; then through this Isaac seed a blessing is to come first to natural Israel, and subsequently to all other peoples. He says, "There shall come out of Zion the Deliverer (the glorified Christ, Head and body, being in process of development throughout this Gospel age), and he shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob" (the natural seed of Abraham, Ishmael of the allegory). The Apostle quotes further saying, "For this is my covenant unto them when I shall take away their sins."

Thus the Lord declares that Israel's sins shall be put away, can celled, and the doing of this covenant will be the fulfillment of his covenant with them, the taking away of their blindness and ungodliness.


The Apostle explains the matter further, saying, "As concerning the Gospel they (natural Israel) are enemies for your sakes (for spiritual Israel's sakes – to permit of your development as the seed of Abraham by the original or Sarah Covenant). But as touching the election they are beloved for the father's sakes, because the gifts [NS289] and calling of God are without repentance. For as ye in times past have not believed God, yet have now obtained mercy through their unbelief, even so have these also now believed, that through your mercy (the mercy of Christ, the antitypical Isaac, the special or spiritual seed of Abraham) they also may obtain mercy." [Rom. 11:28-31]


Following the allegory suggested by the Apostle, Abraham's wife, Keturah, whom he married after the death of Sarah, and by whom he had numerous children, would correspond to the third great Covenant – the New Covenant. (Gen. 25:1)

But while the New Covenant is thus represented in the allegory it is more particularly represented as fulfilled in Isaac, the seed of promise. The Oath-Bound promise reads, "In thy seed (Isaac in the allegory) shall all the families of the earth be blessed." [Gen. 28:14]

It is the antitypical Isaac., the Christ, Head and body, which is to bless all the families of the earth under the New Covenant. The New Covenant of divine mercy and favor toward whosoever will is represented as having Christ for its Mediator and as being sealed by the blood of Christ, the death of Christ. (1 Pet. 1:19)

In various particulars it is contrasted with the Law Covenant, which it supplants – as, for instance, the Apostle contrasts and compares the two, speaking of Moses as the mediator of the Law Covenant and Christ as the Mediator of the New Covenant; the blood of bulls and goats as the offset of the sins of the people under the Law Covenant, the blood of Christ, the better sacrifice, as making atonement for the sins of the people under the New Covenant.

The law of God was the basis of the Law Covenant, and the same law of God – still more freely enunciated as the law of love and the Golden Rule – are set forth as the law connected with the New Covenant. We are shown clearly that the difference between the two covenants is in the different sacrifices and different mediators. Moses, a member of the fallen race, could and did act as a mediator, but could not assist the people out of their imperfections, and hence the covenant which he mediated failed to bring life to those under it.

But the New Covenant in this respect will be different, because the Mediator of the New Covenant, holy, harmless, undefiled and separate from sinners, meets all the requirements of the Covenant with his own blood, his own death, his own sacrifice, and on the basis of the better sacrifice he is able to offer mercy to the people, which Moses could not offer. In a word, then, the law of God was the foundation of the Law Covenant, and the same law – no less strict but still more clearly set forth – will be the law of the New Covenant. The offer of life under the Law Covenant was conditioned upon obedience to the Law.

Similarly the offer of life under the New Covenant will be conditioned on obedience to the divine law. Thus far the similarities, now the differences: The Law Covenant made nothing perfect, because its mediator, unable to meet the requirements of the Law himself, was unable to help the people to do so. The New Covenant Mediator not only kept the Law himself and thus had the right to life everlasting, but giving that life as a ransom for mankind he is prepared to grant to every member of the race all the assistance necessary to obedience to the Law and the attainment of life everlasting.


We have seen what the New Covenant will do when in due time it shall go into effect, but it has not yet gone into effect; before it can be effective it must be sealed. True, our Lord declared, "This is my blood of the New Covenant, shed for many for the remission of sins," "The cup which my Father hath poured for me, shall I not drink it?" But by divine arrangement the Church, the body of the antitypical Isaac is to share with the Head in the work of sealing the New Covenant as well as in the work of being Mediator between God and man. Hence our Lord said to his followers respecting the cup, the blood of the New Covenant, "Drink ye all of it" – participate with me in this work of sealing the New Covenant. And so it has been as the Apostle declared – the faithful saints, the footstep followers of the Lord, have throughout this Gospel age each been "filling up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ." Col 1:24

Not that the sacrifices of the Lord's consecrated people are at all necessary so far as divine justice is concerned – not that they have merit either for those who make them or for others; but that the Lord has ordained that receiving the merit of Christ by faith themselves, they should make consecration of all that they have and thus be accepted as members of the glorified Christ, so that it is, as the Scriptures represent, the sufferings of Christ that are still being accomplished in the world. From this standpoint the work of propitiation has begun, the Head has suffered even unto death and been glorified, and the various members of the Church, the body of Christ, as New Creatures, who are sacrificing earthly interests in harmony with his example are under the influence and guidance of his Word and his Spirit. Presently the great High Priest will have finished his sufferings, finished offering up himself as represented in the Church, his members, and then by that blood of the New Covenant in which his followers are privileged to participate, the New Covenant itself will be [NS290] reckoned as sealed – made sure, made obligatory, guaranteed.


The Church, called now to be members of the body of Christ and joint sacrificers with him, were by nature children of wrath even as others. How, then, can they be justified before the remainder of the world – before the New Covenant is fully ratified and put into effect?

We answer that they are justified by faith, and the righteousness of the Law is counted unto them as fulfilled when they walk not after the flesh but after the Spirit, however imperfect that walk, however short they come of the perfect standard, so long as it is the endeavor of righteousness from their hearts. Their faith in the Lord, demonstrated by their consecration to his service, even unto death, is surely a full demonstration both of their faith and of their obedience, and the Lord so accepts them; and these, as we have seen come in as members of the body of Christ under the original Abrahamic Covenant, needing no new Covenant to intervene. As the Law Covenant was added because of transgressions and to school fleshly Israel, so the New Covenant will be added to the Abrahamic Covenant for the benefit of the world, that thus the promised seed of Abraham might bless all the families of the earth.


We have already seen that the New Covenant could not go into operation until all of the Church, the body of Christ, have shared in his sacrifice and filled up that which is behind of the sufferings of Christ, thus completing the work of the great antitypical day of Atonement, the Gospel age; and looking all about us we see that the curse is still resting upon the world, that God has not vet been merciful to mankind as he proposes to be under the New Covenant arrangement. The whole creation still groaneth and travaileth in pain together, waiting – waiting for the consummation of the atonement work, waiting for the completion of the sufferings of Christ, waiting for the full sealing of the New Covenant when it shall go into effect.

Even natural Israel has not vet received its blessing, though it is to have the first favor under the New Covenant – "They shall obtain mercy through your mercy. Mark some of the things that will obtain under the New Covenant: "I will put my law in their inward parts and write it in their hearts, and I will be their God and they shall be my people.... I will forgive their iniquity and I will remember their sins no more." (Jer. 31:33, 34)

No one can claim that any such terms or conditions have yet obtained. The great mass of mankind are still in darkness, in ignorance of God, in ignorance of his plan, in ignorance of the Mediator, in ignorance of the blessings that are coming through the rolling away of the curse. But all these provisions of the New Covenant are part and parcel of the glorious blessings which the Lord has declared will be accomplished during the Millennial reign of Christ. Then he will have mercy upon them; Satan shall be bound and deceive them no more, and the glorious Mediator as the representative of the Father shall cause the knowledge of his grace to fill the whole earth, and times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord, and times of restitution which God hath spoken by the mouth of all the holy prophets." Rev. 20:2; Isa. 11:9; Acts 3:19-21

In other words, the work of the whole Millennial age will be that of writing again in the hearts of mankind the divine law, which has been largely obliterated by the prevalence of sin and death for the last six thousand years. In proportion as the world under the Lord's instruction and discipline and corrections in righteousness and rewards for every good effort shall rise, inch by inch out of its degradation and death conditions, it will be coming back to restitution to all that was lost in Adam, to full human perfection, the image and likeness of God. Thus in restoring man mentally and physically to the perfect likeness of God will be fulfilled this promise of the New Covenant, of the rewriting of the law in the heart – O, so much better than the writing of it on the tables of stone for Israel.

We who are of Spiritual Israel have many of these blessed experiences now, because we by faith, in a sense, enjoy all the blessings the world will enjoy during the Millennial age, the difference being that our mortal bodies are not going on to perfection, but, on the contrary, we belong to the Isaac class, and are being offered on the altar even as in figure Abraham spared not his son Isaac from sacrifice – he in whom centered the promise.

Thus the Father withheld not our Lord Jesus, but permitted him to pay the great atonement price, and is now also permitting us to suffer with him that we also may reign with him, to be dead with him that we may also live with him and be participants in his glory, honor and immortality as the great King of glory, the great Prophet, Priest and King, whose millennial work as the Mediator between God and the world will deliver from sin and death all mankind except those who wilfully, intelligently refuse, neglect, the privileges thus set before them. How grand are these three great Covenants! But chiefest of them all, dear friends, is that in which you and I as Spiritual Israelites are privileged to have a part. The Lord grants us the wisdom and grace more and more to appreciate the great privilege that is now ours, for "If ye be Christ's, then ye are Abraham's seed and heirs according to the (great Oath-Bound) promise." Gal. 3:29

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