The Cincinnati Weekly Enquirer, January 6, 1910


Chicago, January 2 – Pastor Russell, of Brookiyn Tabernacle, New York, preached here twice today to large audiences. The Auditorium, of world-wide celebrity for its size and excellent acoustics, afforded the immense audience a superior opportunity to hear Pastor Russell's discourse in the afternoon. We report his evening discourse, based on the text Rom. 12:1.

He said: The opening of a new year is like the opening of a new ledger. It is a favorable time for determining what should be disposed of in the profit and loss account and for putting into effect resolutions governing the new year. The fact that thousands of resolutions will be made at this season only to be broken later under the impact of temptation should not discourage us from making such resolutions ourselves and advising the course to others.

The man or woman who makes no resolutions or vows makes little progress in character-building. Poor, fallen human nature needs all the bands and braces and supports which a well-directed will can give it. We are not advocating hasty and sometimes unreasonable vows and resolutions and pledges thoughtlessly taken, and sometimes unreasonable. What we do advocate is thoughtful, rational sitting down and counting the cost, and then and there resolving, with the full strength of the character, with the full determination of the mind, to pursue the way which deliberate judgment tells one is the proper course.

Let us, then, encourage every one to make resolutions to themselves respecting the course of life which they deliberately think will be the most advantageous. And let us encourage such, and not discourage them from any good resolution, helpful to themselves or to others. Resolutions made as children, under proper counsel, and entered into with deliberation, have been the "making" of many noble characters out of material which otherwise would have floated with the current to ignominy and dishonor. We recommend that all parents counsel their children along these lines at this season of the year, supporting their counsel by evidence that they themselves also make resolutions from time to time and faithfully live up to them. To be afraid to make a resolution lest it might be broken is to be afraid of one's shadow. No one can take a step without mental resolution so to do. And likewise steps in the pathway of moral progress all mean resolutions first.


A Christian, like other men, can be benefited by such resolves to himself, which should be sacredly kept, in proportion as he respects himself and would be respected. These resolutions may apply to sundry affairs of life – his home, his business, his personal habits, etc. But when the Christian comes to consider his highest interests he at once recognizes that they are those by which he is related to his Creator and his Savior.

At the very beginning of his Christian experience, after he had longed for righteousness and turned from sin; after his eyes had seen Jesus as his Redeemer; after his ear of faith had heard that he was reconciled to God through the death of his Son and had forgiveness of sins through faith in his blood – then came to him the most important moment of his life.

For God, through His word, invited him to make a full consecration of himself (including every earthly interest and affair) to the Lord and his service. The proposition, in the language of the Savior, was that he should take up his cross and follow Him, and that as a reward he should have in the present life tribulation from without, but the peace of the Lord within, and in the future life experience a share in the First Resurrection. That change to glory, honor, immortality, the divine nature means joint-heirship with his Redeemer in His great office and work as the [NS754] mediator between God and the world during the Millennial Age.

The terms are clearly stated – self-denial, cross-bearing, service for Christ, faithfulness unto death. The rewards also are clearly stated as crowns of life and membership in the royal priesthood, a seat with the Lord in His throne, an opportunity of being one of the judges for helping and uplifting mankind during the Millennium. While stating the conditions clearly and distinctly through the Word the Lord did not urge consecration, but said rather that each should sit down first and count the cost. After having counted the cost, whoever chose to accept the proposition did so by making a vow unto the Lord.

This was to the intent that thereafter not only the conduct of life, but the words of the mouth and the meditations of the heart should be acceptable to the Lord. This comprehensive vow is symbolized in baptism, which, rightly understood, as explained by St. Paul, is a baptism into membership in the Body of Christ (the church), and this by baptism or immersion "into Christ's death." Rom. 6:3

Only such as make this vow are accepted at all as members of the Christ and anointed with the holy Spirit. It is respecting this vow that St. Paul urges, in the words of our text, "I beseech you (justified) brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies living sacrifices, holy, acceptable to God and your reasonable service."

Our contract with the Lord is entered into, made secure, by the vow of consecration, and the remainder of life is merely a testing of the consecrated one to determine to what degree he really meant the vow, to what degree he uses his endeavor to be dead to the world, dead to self, dead to all earthly things and alive toward God and the interest of the Millennial Kingdom, to which he has consecrated himself as a "member" of the Body of the Mediator of the New Covenant. Jer. 31:31; Gal. 3:29


Let no one lightly undertake a vow unto the Lord. It carries with it weighty responsibilities. It would be better every way that none should take the vow without first understanding the matter and entering fully into the spirit of the resolution they make. Once made and accepted by the Lord through the impartation of the holy Spirit, it cannot be annulled.

But why should we wish to annul the vow? Why should any one who puts his hand to the plow look back? To use the apostle's illustration, why should the sow that was washed return to wallowing in the mire? Why should we, after having renounced the world and received the begetting of the holy Spirit, and after tasting of the good Word of God and the powers of the age to come, lose the precious taste and appreciation of these and return in craving to the beggarly elements of the world? Surely there are no good reasons for so doing. Surely the joys of the present life, as well as the hopes of the Kingdom to come, all should encourage us to fully "set our affections on things above and not on the things beneath."

The world, the flesh and the Adversary all exercise influences contrary to our vow or resolution to the Lord to be dead to the world and to self. That we may be alive with Christ and share His glory – suffer with Him, that we may reign with Him, they do not agree. The poet has expressed the proper thought here, saying: "My soul be on thy guard, Ten thousand foes arise; The hosts of sin are pressing hard To draw thee from the prize."

Much of our success in the keeping of our vow of consecration depends upon two things:

1. The clearness of our grasp of the situation when we made our vow and the thoroughness of our intention; the amount or weight thereof; the will power exerted for righteousness.

2. And additional feature of great weight in the matter is the degree of our knowledge. It is in line with this thought that the Scriptures declare, "My people perish for lack of knowledge."

God has given us His Word and informed us that it is "profitable for doctrine, for reproof and for correction in righteousness, that the man of God may be thoroughly furnished."

He has advised us to search the Scriptures and to forget not the assembling of ourselves together. And where His advice is followed and the Scriptures are searched daily, not in a formal manner, but with a desire to know and to do the Lord's will and be guided in His way, a strengthening of the will is effected; correspondingly there is a weakening of the evil influences which oppose us as new creatures and our vow.

The Word of God is so arranged as to provide "meat in due season" for all of his faithful people, whether old or young, in every time. As "babes of Christ," as young men and as full-grown sons of God, it is for each of us a storehouse of grace and truth, to make us strong in the Lord and in the power of His might.

Only by appropriating this spiritual food can we have strength to fulfill our vow, to finish our course with joy and to attain the kingdom. Item by item, as our minds are able to grasp its unfolding prospects of glory, honor and immortality, we are thereby strengthened by the Lord's might in the inner man. In proportion as we realize the facts of the case we may appreciate what a great bargain the Lord has offered us. We surrender in consecration our earthly [NS755] rights, privileges and pleasures and receive in return more happifying spiritual blessings in the present life and the inheritance of the unspeakable blessings and glories of the future. It should, therefore, become much more easy to pay our vows with a willing heart as we grow in grace and in knowledge of the Lord and His Word. Indeed, as the Apostle suggests, it is possible for us to reach the place where we can "rejoice in tribulation also," knowing that thereby our future blessing is increased.


As the consecrated believer considers what God has already done, and what he proposes yet to do for His faithful, gratitude wells up in his heart and his inquiry is, "What shall I render unto the Lord for all his benefits?" The more he considers the matter, the more he realizes that his talents and opportunities are necessarily small, insignificant. It is from this standpoint that the poet wrote, "0 for a thousand tongues to sing my great Redeemer's praise."

It is well indeed to show our appreciation of God's grace by songs of thankfulness and praise, but we are to remember that not merely poetic cadences are our acceptable songs, but that from the proper standpoint life itself is the proper hymn of praise to be continually rendered to the King of Kings. "Singing and making melody in our hearts unto the Lord" will imply that our work will be in harmony – a song of life. (Eph. 5:19)


The Psalmist's answer prophetically represents the attitude of heart of all the faithful. Each is expected to say, "I will take the Cup of Salvation and call upon the name of the Lord." (Psa. 116:13)

The cup of salvation at the present time is the "Cup" which our Lord proffered to His disciples, saying, "This is My blood of the New Covenant shed for many for the remission of sins. Drink ye all of it." (Matt. 26:27, 28)

It is a "Cup" of suffering, self-denial, self-sacrifice, as respects the earthly things which we give up, surrender, that we may attain the heavenly things as joint-heirs with our Redeemer. There might be danger, however, of some getting the wrong thought on this subject.

There is a peculiar pleasure in drinking of the Lord's "cup" of self-sacrifices which those who have never partaken of cannot hope to understand. It is the pleasure of fellowship in His sufferings, as St. Paul explains. And a part of the pleasure connected with that cup is the associated hope of drinking with our Lord of His other cup of joy and glory and blessings in the Kingdom, as he promised. The necessity of partaking of this "Cup" of the Lord is shown by the Savior's words to two of his disciples, inquired, saying: "Lord, grant that we may sit with Thee the one on thy right hand and the other on thy left hand, in the Kingdom."

Our Lord's reply was that they little realized what this high privilege of sitting in the Millennial Throne with him would cost. He inquired: "Are ye able to drink of the cup that I shall drink of? (Matt. 20:22) – the cup of suffering, ignominy, dishonor, death – and to be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?" – not the baptism into water, but into that which is symbolized by the water – a baptism into his death. The apostles indicated their willingness. And we can do no more.

If left to ourselves, undoubtediy the contract would be more than we would be sufficient for. Our sufficiency is of God's providence – our great redeemer is our High Priest and Advocate, able to succor us in every time of need, and able to provide ways of escape from trials too hard for us; able to strengthen us when weak; able to give us the "meat in due season;" able to make us strong in his sight; able to bring to our attention the great and precious promises of God's word. Yea, say St. Paul: "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me." Philip. 4:13


In the context the prophet declares: "I will pay my vows unto the Lord in the presence of all the people."

Publidy, openly, I will espouse the Lord's cause. I will remember his words, "Whosoever shall be ashamed of me, and of my words, of him also shall the son of man be ashamed when he cometh in the glory of his Father, with the holy angels." (Mark 8:38)

I will be faithful in the performance of my covenant to such a degree that my loyalty shall be known to all the brethren as well as to the Lord who reads the heart. Yea, and the worldly should know of the faithfulness of God's people, even though not appreciating the matter, they should despise them and count them fools for Christ's sake.

Vows of this kind are not for the worldly, even though they be morally disposed. They are yet in their sins, if they reject the offer of Divine forgiveness upon Divine terms of consecration. Such may not think to take vows of consecration to the Lord until first they have renounced wilful sin and accepted redemption through faith in the precious blood. Until then they remain amongst the wicked. "Unto the wicked God saith, What hast thou to do to take My words into thy mouth (as a vow), seeing thou hatest instruction and castest My words behind thee." (Psa. 50:17)

All who do not wish Divine instruction, all who spurn the Lord's Word, are in this sense wicked – in a wrong condition of heart. We are glad that there is no truth in the theory that they are liable to eternal torture. [NS756] But, Oh, how much they are missing, nevertheless, of the joys of the Lord in this present time and of the glories and eternal blessings of the future! In closing, dear friends, let me suggest to you a little vow unto the Lord – not as instead of your consecration vow, which is all-comprehensive, but as supplemental thereto – as specifying certain matters which are indeed part and parcel of your consecration vow.

The thought is that by this vow these particular features of your obligation will be daily more prominently before your mind. It is my belief that the taking of it earnestly and soberly, and the keeping of it, would be one of the wisest New Year's resolutions that God's people could make – most helpful to them in the peculiar time in which we are living.


Should any of those who take this vow unto the Lord desire to inform me of the fact, I shall be very pleased to hear from them at my Brooklyn address.


1. Our father which art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name. May Thy rule come into my heart more and more, and Thy will be done in my mortal body. Relying on the assistance of Thy promised grace to help in every time of needs through Jesus Christ our Lord, I register this vow.

2. Daily will I remember at the throne of heavenly grace the general interests of the harvest work, and particularly the share which I myself am privileged to enjoy in that work, and the dear co-laborers at the Brooklyn Tabernacle and Bethel, and everywhere.

3. I vow to still more carefully, if possible, scrutinize my thoughts and words and doings, to the intent that I may be the better enabled to serve Thee and Thy dear flock.

4. I vow to Thee that, I will be on the alert to resist everything akin to spiritism and occultism, and that, remembering that there are but two masters, I shall resist these snares in all reasonable ways, as being of the adversary.

5. I further vow that, with the exceptions below, I will at all times and in all places conduct myself toward those of the opposite sex in private exactly as I would do with them in public – in the presence of a congregation of the Lord's people.

6. And, so far as reasonably possible, I will avoid being in the same room with any of the opposite sex alone, unless the door to the room stand wide open.

7. Exceptions in the case of brethren – wife, children, mother and natural sisters; in the case of sisters – husbands, children, father and natural brothers.

The Cincinnati Weekly Enquirer, January 13, 1910


"The times of this ignorance God winked at; but now He has commanded all men everywhere to repent; because He hath appointed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom He hath ordained." (Acts 17:30-31)

Pastor C. T. Russell, of Brooklyn Tabernacle, New York, preached twice at Toronto Canada, Sunday to large and very attentive audiences.

We report one of his discourses from the above text as follows: The word "winked" in our text is used in a figurative sense to signify that God took no notice of, paid no attention to that long period of time from the flood to the First Advent of our Redeemer.

During those 2500 years the world of mankind lay in ignorance and weakness and vice, but, as our text declares, God took no notice of it as a whole. He gave his attention entirely to the little nation of Israel, the descendants of Abraham, with whom He made a special law covenant. Israel entered upon a great schooling period; first in a condition of peonage in Egypt and later under the command of Moses, passing from Egypt to Canaan, with a wandering of 40 years in the wilderness; still later under judges, and then under Kings, etc. God did not wink at sin amongst the Israelites, whom He adopted as His "peculiar people" under the Law Covenant, mediated by Moses. We read that every disobedience received a "just recompense of reward." (Heb. 2:2)

Stripes, punishments, captivities under divine supervision and predicted through the prophets was the portion of the chosen people of the Lord. Obedience on their part brought blessing and disobedience and idolatry brought chastisements – God winked at nothing as respects his chosen people. At first glance this is perplexing. Not understanding the divine plan we would be inclined to expect that the favored nation would be excused more than others; that it would be the people whose imperfections would be winked at. But not so; Israel was chosen for a [NS757] purpose. And in order to prepare them for their mission and to fit them to fill it the Lord chastened and scourged them for their sins, and thus educated and assisted them more than others out of degradation. As a result when our Lord came into the world to be man's Redeemer, under the chastising, scourging, instructing experiences of many centuries, was by far the most advanced nation in the world along religious lines.

Thus it was that when the Redeemer presented Himself some, "a remnant," were "Israelites indeed and ready to receive Him – 500 during His earthly ministry and several thousand more at the following Pentecostal season. It is but reasonable to suppose that no other nation in the world would have furnished any such numbers ready of heart for Messiah, and consecrated fully to Him. Note, for instance, that St. Paul's preaching to the Athenians on Mars Hill apparently touched not a single heart nor head.


With the smoke of the dark ages in the eyes of our understanding, and our poor brains befuddled by unscriptural theories, we once thought that this passage implied that God winked at thousands and millions slipping and sliding down into purgatory or into worse – eternal torment. With increased light we perceive that those thoughts were fallacious, that nothing in the Bible teaches that those poor creatures, who had neither the Gospel of Christ nor the law of Moses, were damned by their Creator in the manner we had supposed. We now perceive that they were simply allowed to die in their ignorance and sin under the penalty imposed upon Father Adam.

We now see that God merely refrained from giving them any light upon the future respecting what he intended to do for the blessing of the world of mankind – the reconciliation of the world unto himself through Abraham's Seed. We now see that the divine purpose included them with all mankind in the redemption accomplished by Jesus, and that consequently they, with the remainder of the world, will share in the resurrection of the dead, both of the just and of the unjust. What a relief this brings to our heads and hearts! How we used to wonder that the God of Love could not only countenance the eternal torture of these millions, but more than that, foreknew it, predestinated it, and winked at it as though it were a joke, a trifling matter.

Surely we can love our Creator the better in proportion as the eyes of our understanding open to the true teachings of His Word. And surely at the opening of a new year all who through the Divine Word thus discern the divine character to be just and loving will be influenced thereby to a reciprocating love, which will take pleasure in doing those things pleasing in His sight, and which will be grieved at anything that would displease Him.


The Almighty informs us that justice is the very foundation of all His dealings. He cannot be less than just, although through Christ He has provided to be more than just – that is, loving and merciful. There must have been a justice in this winking mentioned by the apostle.

What was it? The apostle explains that, owing to a death sentence that was upon the world in general, and no provision having yet been made for a redemption from that death penalty, and a resurrection deliverance, it would have been illogical for God to give laws to the world of mankind commanding repentance, etc. Why? Because they were already condemned to death, the extreme penalty of the divine law.

No more could be done to them than destroy them, however badly they lived. And nothing that they could do would make them deserving of eternal life. So long as the death sentence rested upon them, and no prospect was offered even of a release from it, God let them alone and justly enough winked at their imperfection and did not lay it specially to their charge. He permitted them to go down to the tomb unenlightened respecting His graciqus purposes of the future for them and for all men through Christ.

With the Jew it was different. God instructed that nation through the law and the prophets and the chastenings for their wrong doings, and thus prepared in them a "little flock" of "Israelites indeed," ready for spiritual things. Additionally He wished to use them and their experience as types or lessons for Spiritual Israel yet future. These types under the guidance of the Holy Spirit through the New Testament, have constituted very helpful lessons to the church of this Gospel Age – Spiritual Israel – "For the Law Covenant was a shadow of good things coming after it."

But before having this dealing with Israel God made a covenant with them, promising them life eternal if they would obey. They gladly accepted the proposition and strove to live righteously, strove to keep the law. They did not gain eternal life under the law, because they could not keep it; not that the law was defective, but that they, like all other members of Adam's fallen race, were imperfect. God knew of their weakness and allowed them to be disappointed in the outcome of their Covenant, but nevertheless He made it a great blessing to them – a means of instruction, which, as we have seen, ultimately prepared several thousand to be of so ripe a condition of heart as to be ready for the [NS758] Savior and become His disciples. The Jew then had this advantage over the Gentile up to that time. He had God's promise. He knew the law of God. He was profited by striving to do the impossible thing of keeping it perfectly. Had God not chosen the nation of Israel to bring them under the schooling processes of the Law Covenant (Gal. 3:24)

He would have "winked" at their ignorance, etc., as He did with the transgressions of other nations up to that time.


What is the secret of this change on God's part – from winking at the sins and imperfections of the world to commanding them to repent? If it is just to wink at their sins for thousands of years, why did not God continue to wink at them? The apostle answers the question, telling us that this change in God's dealing which sent forth the message that the world should repent was based upon the fact that His eternal purposes had by that time reached the stage of development which justified such a message.

The Son of God had left the glory of the Father which He had before the world was; He had humbled Himself to become a man. As the man Christ Jesus He had been obedient to the heavenly Father's wish and had laid down His life sacrificially – that it might first benefit consecrated believers during this gospel age; secondly, that it might bless the world of mankind during the millennial age.

For a time these good tidings were confined to the Jewish nation, but three and a half years after the crucifixion the limit of Israel's favor respecting the message came to an end, and then the good tidings of great joy were permitted to go to all the Gentiles on the same terms that the Jews enjoyed. The Gospel, or "good news," consists of the information that God in His mercy has provided that the death sentence upon Adam and his race shall not be perpetual, that there shall be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and of the unjust; that the provision for this has already been made in and through the death of the Redeemer. It is inquired what advantage would there be in a resurrection of the dead if therewith all would be placed back again just where they are at present?

The answer is that there would be no advantage in such a resurrection. If the Jew could not keep the law, and if the very best-intentioned of the Gentiles have found themselves to be imperfect and their efforts to stand approved before God in the present life failures, what good could result from merely awakening them from the sleep of death?

Would it not be wiser and better every way to let them perish like the brute beast? We answer that God's Word reveals a very grand outcome to His plan of salvation. The word resurrection, as Scripturally used, signifies much more than to be merely resuscitated. It signifies awakening, and more – uplifting out of all sin and death condition, up, up, up to perfection – to all that was lost by Father Adam and redeemed in the Calvary sacrifice.


This, then, is the meaning of the apostle's argument. By providing the Lord Jesus Christ as the Redeemer of the church and the world God has made possible a fresh trial, or judgment, for Adam and his race. Adam's first judgment, or trial, day was in Eden.

There he lost everything by his disobedience and brought upon himself and all his race divine sentence to death. Christ has appeared that He might redeem Adam and his race, for the very purpose of giving them individually another full, fair trial or judgment for life everlasting or death everlasting. That general judgment day mentioned by St. Paul in our text is neither a damnation day nor a twenty-four-hour day. It is the thousand-year day of Christ, the period of His mediatorial reign, in which Satan will be bound, all evil influences be removed and the light of the knowledge of the glory of God be made to fill the whole earth. St. Peter reminds us, "Beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day with the Lord is as a thousand years." (2 Pet. 3:8)

This is the key to the expressions, "The day of Christ," "The day of judgment," etc. The millennial day will be a day of judgment or trial in the sense that all mankind, the living and the dead, will then be brought to full knowledge of God and to full opportunity to regain by resurrection processes a complete uplift from all weaknesses, imperfections, etc., which have resulted from our share in Adam s sin and our own weakness and ignorance. Sins to the extent that they were willful will to the same extent be punishable and receive a just recompense of reward." (Heb. 2:2)

Every good endeavor will be rewarded and every shortcoming will be punished. From this standpoint we see the force of the apostle's argument that it is the divine intention to grant to every member of Adam's race another trial, another judgment, to determine afresh and individually the worthiness or unworthiness of each to have eternal life.

But why would this fact make any difference to the world in the present life? Why did not God wait until the Millennial Age and give them all a surprise? Why did He send them the message of His love and a revelation of this knowledge of His future dealings? Did He not know what the past 18 centuries has proven, namely, that few of mankind would have the "hearing ear," an& that fewer still, after hearing, [NS759] would so love righteousness and so hate iniquity as to sacrifice the interests of the present life by espousing the Gospel message, repenting of sin and seeking to live a saintly life in opposition to all righteousness? Yes, we answer, it is written, "Known unto God are all His works from the beginning of the world" (Acts 15:16)

God surely knew that the message of His grace would generally fall upon ears that were dull of hearing. That we might know this He caused it to be written to the prophecies in advance, that few would have the hearing ear for His message of love and mercy.

Why, then, did He send the message? We answer that there were two reasons for His so doing.

1. He intended that a witness should be given so that those comprehending would have an incentive to a reformation of life. He wished all to know that their responsibility in life would be proportionate to their knowledge of this fact of redemption. This principle is stated in the Scriptures of our Lord. He declares that he who knew not and was disobedient would be punished with fewer stripes and a lighter punishment for his transgressions, while those who knew better and sinned with deliberation will be punished with many stripes – in that millennial day. In other words, every violation of conscience sinks the transgressor lower and blunts his moral sense the more, and makes the highway of holiness so much the more difficult for him to enter upon during the millennium.

In accordance with his knowledge and right living in the present life will be the responsibilities and advantages of the life that is to come under the mediatorial kingdom of Messiah. Whoever seeks peace and righteousness will be proportionately blessed, and on coming forth from the tomb will have a character proportionately the more in harmony with the divine standards and a shorter journey to make to perfection and eternal life.

2. Another reason for the promulgation of the good tidings of the millennial day of the Lord's judgment is that God wishes to use this message as a primary lesson to do a primary work of instruction for a special class of "elect" characters, whom He is seeking in the present time before the inauguration of the mediatorial kingdom. He calls these His jewels, the Bride of Christ, His "members."

This class is specially called out of the world now in advance of the millennium, that they may eventually be God's royal priesthood, or priestly kings, in association with their Redeemer. These, according to the Scriptures, are to be Associate Judges of the world with Christ. St. Paul asks, "Know ye not that the saints shall judge the world?" (1 Cor. 6:2)

We do know it, thank God. And we know that they will be thoroughly competent for that work. Their experiences in the present life, in battling against the world and the flesh and the devil and coming off conquerors through the assistance of the great High Priest, make them competent Judges of the world; competent priests to assist and to bless the world; competent under-priests to govern the world from the Spirit plane.


To this special class I particularly address myself. I am glad to warn all men everywhere to repent, and glad also to give them the good reason why they should repent – to tell them of God's appointed time, the millennial epoch, in the which all shall have a full opportunity of gaining eternal life through Christ. I am glad to assure them that every endeavor for righteousness put forth now will bring large returns of character development and better position then. I warn them that every willful transgression, all willful ignorance, will react upon them to their disadvantage and make for shame and lasting contempt on their part, under the glorious sunlight of that millennial day. It will search out and expose to all humanity their weaknesses, their sins, to the extent that these have been accepted or approved or not resisted.

But as I said before, I trust that among the ten million readers reached by my sermons every week there are some who are of the saintly class, "called, chosen and faithful" – some of this jewel class, whose judgment or trial is in progress now. I trust that these are striving with might and main to make their calling and election sure through faith in the Redeemer's sacrifice and obedience to His Law of the Spirit of Life – the Law of Love. Now is our judgment day, our day of testing or trial.

We will not stand or fall as congregations and denominations or lodges or societies. Our testing is an individual one and nothing short of loyalty of heart to the Lord, to His Truth and to the brethren will make us as the Lord's jewels, "heirs of God, and joint heirs with Christ our Lord; if so be that we suffer with Him, that we may be also glorified together" (Rom. 8:17).

Such have my special sympathy, my special endeavors, my special love and my special prayers. And the prayers of all such I solicit on my part that I may continue faithful to the end of the journey and with you all hear the Master's precious words, "Well done, thou good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things. I will make thee ruler over many things; enter into the joys of thy Lord." (Matt. 25:21)


Tippecanoe County Democrat, January 16, 1910


This discourse, first of four series on, "The Cost of Church Federation," has been republished, in part, in Overland Monthly, pages 234-237, entitled, "Creed Smashing Necessary For Federation" and republished, in its entirety, in Convention Report Sermons, pages 68-70, entitled, "Church Federation – Part I."

National Labor Tribune, January 23, 1910


This discourse, second of four series on "The Cost of Church Federation," has been republished, in part, in Overland Monthly, pages 238-242, entitled, "Changes of Creeds Necessary," and republished in its entirety in Convention Report Sermons, pages 73-76, entitled "Church Federation, Part II."

The Brooklyn Daily Eagle, February 6, 1910


This discourse, third of four series on "The Cost of Church Federation," has been republished, in part, in Overland Monthly, pages 243-247, entitled, "Episcopalian, Catholic, Lutheran," and in Convention Report Sermons, entire, pages 76-78, entitled, "Church Federation, Part III."

National Labor Tribune, January 30, 1910


This discourse, final offour series on "The Cost of Church Federation," has been republished in part; in Overland Monthly, pages 187-190 under same title, and republished in its entirety in Convention Report Sermons pages 78-81, under title, "Church Federation – Part IV."


The National Labor Tribune, February 16, 1910


London, Ont., February 16 – Pastor C. T. Russell, of Allegheny, Pa., preached here twice today to intelligent and attentive audiences. We report his evening discourse on "The Fear of the Lord," from the text, "This people draw nigh unto me with their mouth, and with their lips do honor me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me is taught by the precepts of men." (Isa. 29:13)

He said: We should be as anxious to develop in our hearts the proper fear of the Lord, namely reverence, veneration, as we should be anxious to root out of our hearts the improper fear of dread based, as our text declares, upon misapprehensions of the divine character taught not by the Scriptures, the Word of God, but by the precepts of men.

This false fear is to be found everywhere amongst the heathen nations and amongst the civilized. Fear is closely associated with caution, which every human being should possess to a considerable degree; but caution rightly exercised calls for evidence, for facts and in proportion as it is properly supplied with the truth respecting God and his character, it should preserve us from any unreasonable fears.

While father Adam was in his perfection, before his transgression, he was in full harmony with his creator, and it is reasonable to suppose that no shadow of fear crossed his pathway. It was after he became a transgressor that he feared the Lord and hated himself, realizing that he had come under the divine sentence of death. So it is with all who perceive that they are sinners and who realize that God is the very personification of perfection and holiness. They understand that they are out of harmony with him and that he cannot approve them on account of their blemishes. Hence the natural attitude of all mankind is a realization of divine displeasure resting upon them.

This is proper enough and cannot do otherwise than result favorably, for, as the Scriptures suggest,


This is the proper fear or reverence and appreciation of the wide destinction there is between the Almighty and ourselves, especially on account of our fallen condition, in which we were born – born in sin, shapen in iniquity. (Psa. 51:5)

This proper fear should be so pronounced, this feeling of alienation from God and subjection to his disapproval should be so indelibly impressed upon us as to make us feel that we were ostracized. However, a proper veneration for the Almighty should lead us to be on the lookout for any evidence of divine mercy that might be extended. We have no justification whatever for the thought that the almighty Creator had vicious feelings toward any of his creatures; it is contrary to reason that we should fear eternal torment or that God would in any manner deal unjustly with us, even if we became his avowed enemies.

He has declared that "all the wicked will he destroy." (Psa. 145:20), and loving life we may well fear that destruction, dread it, abhor obliteration and consider that the dying conditions which prevail all around us are indeed manifestations of the wrath of God revealed against all unrighteousness, against sin, under his sentence, "The soul that sinneth, it shall die" Eze. 18:4

This proper fear would suggest to us that even though in our fallen condition we be not able to meet the divine requirements of perfection in thought, word and deed, nevertheless it would be right for us to come as near the divine standard as possible in our daily living – even though we realize that we are already under the death sentence. Those who are in this attitude of heart are best prepared to hear the voice of the Lord, which indeed insists that we are sinners and that God is just in the death sentence which he has pronounced, but which informs us of his love and sympathy and his provision of a Savior, who already has died for our sins and thus made judicial satisfaction therefore, and who by virtue of that satisfaction now stands ready to forgive us our sins, to cover our blemishes, and to treat us as though we were no longer sinners; to assist us back to relationship to God by faith.

We are informed, too, that those who accept these provisions of the present time and follow in the footsteps of the Master will shortly have a blessing from the Father and that on a higher plane than they ever enjoyed before; that they will be changed in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye in the First Resurrection, to be like their Lord, spirit beings, and that they will be joint heirs with him in his [NS762] glorious Millennial Kingdom, which is to bless the world. Thus we see that this class in a right attitude may be privileged to hear of more than a recovery of all that was lost in Adam – something better than restitution to the original condition of perfect manhood in a perfect paradise. Thus the fear of the Lord, which is the beginning of wisdom, is profitable and helpful to us in all the steps in which his grace shall lead us that we may make our calling and election sure to the wonderful things to which we have been invited. But on the other hand there is a wrong fear, contrary to the teachings of God's Word, the fear mentioned in our text, which is


This fear is as injurious as the other one is advantageous. If we inquire in heathen lands we find this fear everywhere. The heathen make no profession of love for God, for they know nothing respecting him that could command their love; they know of him as an almighty devil who wishes occasion against them to do them evil and they seek to propitiate him and thus to turn away his savage wrath. But, alas, we do not need to go to the heathen for illustrations of improper fear taught by human precepts!

Christendom as a whole seems to be under this same slavish bondage of fear, which misapprehends the divine character and divine plan and stands in dread of God. It is Christendom, indeed, that is addressed in our text. Not all of Christendom; but, alas, a vast majority are truly described by the words, "This people draweth nigh unto me with their lips, while their heart is far from me."

Oh, how much of sham there is in much of the worship that is perfunctorily offered to the Almighty! How few there are who worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness – who worship him in spirit and in truth! The difficulty is that these improper worshippers have such a wrong fear of God that they cannot love him and hence cannot draw nigh to him with their hearts. They are in dread of him because of his power and because of the false fear they have received from the "dark ages" – traditions of men wrongly supposed to be the teachings of the Bible.

Missionaries tell us that one of the greatest difficulties they have in securing the hearts of the heathen is because the latter cannot appreciate the teaching that their fathers and brothers have gone to an eternity of torture; because no missionary ever before came to tell them of the only name given under heaven and amongst men whereby we must be saved. Can we blame the poor heathen that they should fail to appreciate a God whose character is thus misrepresented, traduced, slandered, blasphemed?

It is rather to the discredit of Christendom that the same story, the same perversion, called the Gospel, awakens so little protest in the minds, in the hearts, in the sympathies of Christendom itself; for the story is the same traditions of men in both instances, only that it strikes the heathen more forcefully because he has not been inured to it from infancy. The false Gospel, traditions of men, preached in the name of the Lord and the Bible, become so familiar to us in infancy that by the time we grow up its horrible details have been largely lost sight of.

To us as well as to the heathen these traditions of men speak fear of the Almighty, who, according to all the creeds of Christendom, has already sent to eternal torment the vast majority of our relatives, friends and neighbors – all except a "little flock," all except the "Very Elect," all except the saints, all except those who walked in the footpaths of Jesus, all except those who have heard and accepted Christ as their Redeemer and who covenant to him to be his disciples and be faithful in their covenant – called, chosen and faithful. No wonder! Ah, no wonder! What other effect could this "doctrine of devils" (1 Tim. 4:1) have upon the minds of intelligent, thinking people than to drive out all love, all reverence for God. What other effect could it have than to produce that slavish fear that would give outward acknowledgment and bow the knee and outwardly conform to praise and prayer but inwardly, at heart, be far from the true worship of the true God! If we had no Bible at all and only a very moderate amount of common sense, reason itself would teach us the falsity of the doctrines inculcated through human traditions from the "dark ages," the falsity of believing that our Creator could be so unjust as to bring us into life without our consent, permitting us to be "born in sin and shapen in iniquity," permitting us to have imperfect heads and thus imperfect reasoning faculties and morals as well as imperfect physical faculties, permitting us to be surrounded by an unfavorable environment, and then to make the condition of life very difficult and the alternative an eternity of fire and intense misery. Who but a devil could have concocted such a miserable misrepresentation of the divine character?

The Scriptures assure us that these traditions of men which are so reprehensible owe their origin to our Adversary, the devil, Satan, who has been blinding and deceiving the race for centuries. It is high time now, in the gray dawn of the new dispensation, that all the children of the light should be awake and use the Bible, the God given lamp for our feet and lantern for our footsteps, that in the light of it we might find the true character of God and be enabled to render to him true reverence, true fear, true worship, and that we should be free from the false fear which has been taught us by the traditions of men and which has done much to harden the hearts of men [NS763] and to alienate them from the God of justice and love. I speak as one who has full sympathy with those who are yet in blindness and darkness. I well remember the awful bondage of fear that was upon my own soul as the result of the swallowing of the traditions of men handed down to us through all the creeds of Christendom, the doctrine of Purgatory being a little less unreasonable than the creeds of Protestants, though equally of human traditions, contradictory to the Scriptures rightly interpreted. I am safe in assuming that my own experience in connection with this fear born of human tradition was considerably in harmony with that of other fellow-Christians.

My only relief was in forgetting it, in stifling thought, in refusing to reason on the subject. As I tried to forget the fear born of the error I found help in such passages of Scripture as were not twisted by mistranslation and misinterpretation; those which declare the love of God, which picture him as a Father and assure us that "like as a father pitieth his children, so the Lord pitieth them that fear him." (Psa. 103:13) – with the proper fear or reverence, homage. It would have been impossible for me to think of the Lord as a father, except as I was able to measurably cover over and forget the devilish things respecting God taught me in the creeds of men who, themselves believing those creeds and practicing them, burned one another at the stake, thinking the while that they were copying their God.


Although at the first advent of Christ this doctrine of devils had not so thoroughly permeated the human mind, especially the Jewish mind, nevertheless our Lord intimated distinctly that the difficulty with the Israelites, the professed people of God at that time, was that they did not really know him, that to some extent their minds had been blinded and beclouded so that they could not and did not appreciate his real character. The "traditions of the elders" stood in their way, as the traditions of the "dark ages" now obscure our vision. Our Lord warned the people against those traditions of the elders and instructed them to search the Scriptures.

And so now we advise Christian people to abandon the creeds of the "dark ages" and to hold fast to the Bible, the Word of God, as the anchor of truth, which alone will keep them secure in the storm which is already sweeping over the world and which will make shipwreck of the faith of all who are not thus properly anchored. Our Lord's words to which I refer are a part of his prayer to his Father, "And this is life eternal, that they might know thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent." (John 17:3)

These words are still true; no one can be in that attitude where he or she would be so in harmony with God as to be fit for eternal life, except as he has attained a correct knowledge of God. To know God and to know about God are entirely different matters. Some know more and some less about God, just as some know more and some less about the King of England, the President of the United States and others. But it is one thing to know about people and another thing to know them. Doubtless much has been told us of the potentates of earth, which is but human tradition and very misleading.

We may have heard anecdotes respecting them, which gave us too high an opinion or too low an estimate of their character, and hence our knowledge of them does not permit us to say that we are well acquainted with them. Similarly, oniy more so the divine character has been misrepresented both by friends and foes, under the delusions of the great Adversary – and no one could know God as he is misrepresented by his adversary, Satan, and love him. It is only when we begin to get the inside information, accessible only to the friends of God, that we can have a true conception of his character.

This inside information comes to us through the testimony of the Word of God – Moses and the prophets, Jesus and the apostles. And in hearkening to these either we must exclude the views coming to us from the "dark ages," or else if we hearken to them at all we must criticize them, expecting to find as a result of the critical investigation that our God is fully up to his own declaration respecting his character; that he is just, that he is wise, that he is powerful and that the sum of all his gracious qualities is love.

Anything that the traditions of men may suggest to the contrary of this divine message must be rejected or at least held in abeyance while we make further study, and our study should be from this standpoint – with this expectation, that we shall find in the great God, our Creator, one worthy of our worship and possessed of all the qualities which his Word extols and which he commands us to copy, and the chiefest of these is love – love that extends not only to our God and finds him worthy of love but to our neighbor, even though he may be unworthy of it, and our enemies and is gracious and forgiving, not vindictive and malicious.

Only those who are enabled thus to get the true picture of God before their minds and to crowd out or entirely destroy from memory the horrible misrepresentations of the traditions of men and the fears thus engendered by them – only these can know God. It is their privilege to come into close relationship with him, to feel his love and to have something of the same love begotten in their own hearts. This knowledge of God's character is largely dependent upon knowledge of his plan. If a workman is known by [NS764] his product, so the Master workman must be known by his finished work. He tells us that his work is not yet finished; that he created man perfect, that he permitted him to be a free agent, that he foreknew and permitted his fall and that he pronounced and executed the sentence of death against man (but he tells us nothing about a sentence of eternal torment). He tells us that he sent his Son to be the Redeemer of the world and to lay down his life on our behalf, dying the just for the unjust.

That by dying for Adam the Son redeemed him and all of his race who lost life through him, that thus a corresponding price has been paid and that eventually, as a result, all mankind shall go free from the sentence – free from death by a resurrection from the dead. He tells us that all these experiences with sin and death will thus ultimately prove a great lesson to mankind as well as a lesson to the angels respecting sin, its penalty and respecting divine love in providing redemption and resurrection.

He tells us further that this recovery from death and punishment of sin and destruction of Satan wait until a due time, which divine wisdom has appointed. He assures us that in the interim since the redemption has been accomplished, he is calling out first of all a Church, to be his joint-heir and associate in the great work of spreading the blessings of restitution and resurrection to every creature, with the knowledge of God and the assistance necessary to attain life eternal if they will. He informs us that even for the incorrigible he has no eternal torment in store, but that for such the penalty shall be "everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and the glory of his power" – without hope of a further redemption or resurrection or recovery in any manner. (2 Thess. 1:9)

As we come to see the reasonableness, the justice, the goodness, wisdom, the love of the divine plan, we come to know him whose character is represented in that plan, whom to know thus is to love as the most just, the most wise and most gracious one, far above our highest natural ideal and yet the ideal of which our hearts approve. And this is the testimony of the Scriptures, too: "As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my plans than your plans." Isa. 55:9


In the Book of Revelation, which is a book of symbolical pictures, the Lord represents all the civilized world as becoming intoxicated with the wine of Babylon – intoxicated with false doctrine. (Rev. 18:2, 3)

And here in connection with our text the same figure is brought to our attention. Christendom is represented (v. 8) as being hungry and dreaming of satisfaction, but on awakening to thought finding only emptiness and thirst. "They are drunken, but not with wine; they stagger, but not with strong drink," the Prophet declares (v. 9).

We can see this staggering, this uncertainty of mind in every direction, not merely amongst Christian professors in general, but also amongst the ministry. They know not what to think, they are confused, addled, as the Prophet points out. He declares that a spirit of stupor is upon them, especially upon the teachers and prominent ones of Christendom. (v. 10)

He declares that their vision of the future, their understanding of divine revelation, the Bible, "is become unto you as the words of a book that is sealed."

So much is this so that few any longer expect to be able to understand the Bible or to find in it anything reasonable, logical, satisfactory. He declares that when men deliver the book to one that is learned, saying, "Read (explain) this, I pray thee: he saith, I can not; for it is sealed." (v. 11)

I do not understand it. How true to the facts of the case! How few are able to give a reason for the hope that is in them, or to quote the Word of the Lord on any subject in a connected, logical and reasonable manner! Then through the Prophet he points out the attitude of the common people. If the Book, the Bible, is delivered to them and they be asked for an explanation of it, they reply that they cannot be expected to understand or expound the Scriptures, since they are unlearned – that theexposition of the Bible should be left to the Doctors of Theology. (v. 12)

Then our text follows, saying that the result of this nelgect of the Word of God is the cause for the formality which prevails in Christendom, many drawing nigh to the Lord whose hearts are far from him, honoring him with their mouth and their lips, but with their hearts out of accord, and full of fear because of their having accepted the precepts of traditions of men instead of the Word of God, which is so generally neglected. (v. 13)

Let us, dear brethren, resolve that whatever others may do or say or believe or teach, we will hold fast to the Word of God which is able to make us wise unto salvation and give us an inheritance amongst the saints in light. Let us resolve, as expressed in the succeeding verse (v. 23) that we will be indeed God's children, God's workmanship, who will sanctify, honor his name and reverence our God and that as our dear Redeemer suggests we will thus come to a clear knowledge of the Father and of the Son and of the glorious plan of salvation which they are working out, and in which, as the glorified Elect Church, we may have a share during the Millennium – that all the families of the earth may thus be blessed with the knowledge and with opportunity for restitution and eventually eternal life, as they render obedience to that knowledge.


The Clinton Courant, February 19, 1910


"What doth thy God require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?" Mic 6:8

Norfolk, Va., Feb. 13 – Are the words of our text true? Is it possible that the true religion of the Bible demands nothing more of us than is expressed in this text? What about the Jewish Law? What about its sin-offering, its burnt-offering, its thank-offerings? What about the ten commandments? What about the digest of those commandments approved by our Lord Jesus, "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, with all thy mind, with all thy being, with all thy strength; and thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself"?

What about Church atfendance? What about study of the Bible to know God's will? What about our responsibility for the heathen? What about baptism and the Lord's supper? Indirectly, dear brethren, all the matters included in our questions and many more are included incidentally in the provisions of our text. Sometimes a whole sermon is preached in a few words. No one will dispute the reasonableness of the Divine requirement as stated in our text.

Our Creator could not justly or with self-respect ask less than this of his creatures who would enjoy his favor. The interests of all demand that these principles should be required of every creature permitted the enjoyment of Divine favor to the extent of eternal life. Whoever fails to come up to these conditions would thus evidence his unworthiness of life eternal; his prolonged existence would merely be a prospering of sin and a menace to the happiness and righteousness of others. But now let us see the scope of this Divine requirement, whose justice we have already acknowledged. We note the natural division of our text into three parts:

(1) Doing justly;

(2) Loving mercy;

(3) Walking humbly.

The requirement of justice in all our dealings with our fellows, commends itself to every rational mind. It includes the whole Law of God. A brief statement of that Law which had our Lord's approval reads, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart and all thy mind, all thy being and all thy strength; and thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. On these two propositions hang all the Law and the Prophets.

It is but just that we should recognize our Creator as first; that we should glorify the One who gave us our being and all the blessings that come therewith: that we should be obedient to his righteous requirements that make for our own happiness and that of others. It is also but right that we should recognize the rights of others, as we would have them recognize our rights. The Golden Rule is the barest of justice. Not a hair's breadth less would come within the requirements of our text, Do Justly. Come, then, let us reason together. How many of us do justly in all of life's affairs – in our relationship to our God and to our neighbor?

Begin at home. Let each one criticise his words and his deeds toward his parents; toward his children; toward his brothers; toward his sisters; toward husband; toward wife. Do we in all of our relationships of life treat these who are so near and so dear to us according to the standards of justice, according to the Golden Rule? Do we do toward them as we would have them do toward us? If not, after making a beginning with the Lord, striving to render to him our homage and obedience, let us closely scrutinize every word, every act of the home life and see to what extent these can be improved upon and made more nearly just.

The majority of people, we feel sure, will be surprised to know how unjust they have been toward those who are of the very nearest and dearest of fleshly relationships. Follow the matter up and consider the justice or injustice of your words and deeds in daily life with your neighbors and daily associates. Do you invariably speak to them in the same words and with the same tone and gesture that you would approve if they were in your place and you in theirs? In matters of business do you drive a closer bargain with them than you would think just for them to make with you?

Or, on the other hand, do you ask of them higher prices for the services or materials you furnish them than you would consider just and right if you were the purchaser and they the venders? Do you watch your chickens that they do not commit depredations upon your neighbor's garden as carefully as you would wish your neighbor to watch his chickens as respects your garden, if you had one? Do you blow no more tobacco smoke in the face of your neighbor than you would like to have him blow in your face? Are you as careful about wiping your feet when entering his house as you would like him to be when entering your house? Do you treat all men, women, children and animals as kindly, as gently, as properly everyway as you think would be just and right if you were in their place and [NS766] they in yours? Do you speak as kindly of your neighbors as you would have them speak of you? Or do you hold up their imperfections to ridicule, as you would like to have them hold up yours? Do you guard your tongue so that you speak only things you would think roper for your neighbor to speak respecting you, if you changed places?


Do you not begin to see, dear friends, that what God requires of us is much beyond what the majority have been rendering? Do you stand appalled and tell me that it would be impossible to live fully up to that standard? I agree with you. And St. Paul agrees, saying, "We cannot do the things which we would."

The Scriptures again agree and declare "There is none righteous, no, not one. All have sinned and come short of the glory of God."

What shall we do? Shall we say that because we are unable to live up to our own conceptions and standards of justice we will make no attempt to do so, but abandon those standards entirely? God forbid.

We are weak enough and imperfect enough as it is. To ignore our best ideals of justice would be to take off all the brakes and permit the downward tendencies of our depraved natures to go rapidly from bad to worse – to carry us further and further from God and the standards of character which he approves. We can surely be content to do nothing less than our very best to live up to our own ideals and to raise those ideals as nearly as possible to the Divine standard.


Suppose we do our very best daily to measure up to our highest conceptions of our God-given ideals and standards, would God accept of this and count us worthy of his favor and of eternal life? Surely not.

The Law of the Lord is perfect. Justice is Justice. Not the hearer of a law, not the well-wishing, receives the reward, but the doer, the obedient! Here, then, we find ourselves in difficulty. With our hearts, our minds, we approve God's Law and desire to be obedient to him, but find, as St. Paul says, that many things we wish to do we fail to accomplish; and many of the things we do not wish to do we cannot avoid. "We cannot do the things that we would."

We approve the excellent demands of God's Law. We disapprove the imperfections of our own flesh. Like St. Paul, we cry out, "O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from this dead body?" – this body that is imperfect through inherited sin and weaknesses.

With our minds we serve God's Law and approve it; but with our bodies we come short. What is our hope? How shall we be delivered? Can we prevail upon God to change the reasonable requirement of our text so that it shall read. What doth God require of me but to will justly and do imperfectly? We can not hope for such a change in the Divine Law. Are we then hopeless as respects Divine approval and eternal life? (Rom. 7:17-24)


In our moment of perplexity we hear God's message "speaking peace through Jesus Christ our Lord."

The message of peace is that what we could not do for ourselves in the way of lifting ourselves up to Divine approval God has provided shall be done for us through our Lord Jesus Christ. Our failure to keep the Law marks us as unworthy of eternal life, and worthy of the wages of sin – not eternal torment, but death. God in mercy concluded to offer us eternal life as a gift – because of our not actually meriting it under his legal requirements. Thus we read, "The wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." (Rom. 6:23)

What we could not obtain legally under the Divine requirements God proffers to us as a gift. But the gift is a conditional one as expressed in the words, "through Jesus Christ our Lord."

Only those who accept Jesus Christ as "the Way, the Truth, and the Life" may have God's gift of eternal life. Hence it will be seen that it is wholly a mistake to suppose that the heathen at home or abroad can get eternal life, the gift of God, in ignorance of Christ. All the Scriptures confirm this and declare not only that we cannot save ourselves by obedience to the terms of God's Law, but that "there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved" – through faith in his name – through faith in his blood (Acts 4:12).

But how is this done justly? and, why does God so limit his gift of eternal life? God's Law represents himself and cannot change. He cannot require less than perfection. To do so would be to fill the Universe to all eternity with depraved and imperfect beings. God has a higher plan than this and declares, "As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways (Isa. 55:9).

He explains that his ultimate purpose is that there shall be no imperfect creature in all his Universe. All whose hearts are loyal to him and the principles of his government shall be perfected, and all others shall be destroyed in the Second Death. Thus, eventually, every knee shall bow and every tongue confess to the glory of God. Then every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth and under the earth, shall be heard saying, Blessing and honor and glory and power be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the [NS767] Lamb forever (Rev. 5:13)


Possibly God could have arranged some other way of dealing with sin and sinners which would not have required the death of Jesus as the Ransom price, the purchase price, the redemption price for sinners. But the fact that this method was adopted by our great Creator assures us that no other method would have been so wise, so just, so beneficial.

No other method would have so fully demonstrated God's Wisdom, Justice, Love and Power. In brief, then, God's arrangement is that all of his human creatures shall have opportunity of full return to harmony with himself, provided they wish to do so, provided their hearts, their wills, are fully responsive to the letter and spirit of his Law – the requirements set forth in our text. God has provided in Jesus for the satisfaction of Divine Justice as respects all of the condemned race who desire to return to his favor.

We agree with all the orthodox creeds of Christendom that only repentance from sin and an endeavor to put it away from our thoughts and words and deeds, combined with faith in the Redeemer's sacrifice and a full consecration of heart and life to do the Father's will – nothing short of this attainment will gain the salvation which God is now holding out to mankind. To such the Apostle explains that the righteousness, the full demands of the Law of God, his full requirement, "is fulfilled in us who are walking not after the flesh, but after the Spirit" (Rom. 8:4).

From the moment of our consecration and begetting of the holy Spirit God deals with this class as with sons. He trains them in the School of Christ, disciplining, chastening, proving them, testing the sincerity of their consecration Vows and the loyalty of their hearts. To those who prove faithful the great reward is promised – glory, honor, immortality, joint-heirship with the Lord Jesus Christ in his Millennial Kingdom and its work of blessing all the families of the earth. (Gal. 3:29; Rev. 3:21)

Our disagreement with all "orthodix creeds" is in respect to what shall be done with the unsaintly – with those who do not present themselves to God and who are not begotten again of the holy Spirit. Our creeds of the dark ages misrepresented the teachings of the Bible in respect to these and told us that they are all to be consigned for hundreds or thousands of years to Purgatory or for all eternity in hell torment. Not such is the teaching of God's Word, but the very reverse, as we have previously shown, the Scriptures do not declare, in thee and in thy Seed shall all the families of the earth be damned; but the reverse of this – that they shall all be blessed.

All the sin-blinded eyes will be opened. All the deaf' ears of ignorance shall be unstopped. For the blest thousands years of Christ's reign the world's uplifting or resurrection will proceed, while the knowledge of the glory of God shall fill the whole earth.

The angels on the plains of Bethlehem did not declare to the shepherds, Fear greatly! for behold, we bring you bad tidings of great misery which shall be unto all people. Their message was the reverse of this: "Fear not; behold we bring you good tidings of great joy which shall be unto all people" [for God who had a "due time" for calling natural Israel and who had also a "due time" for calling spiritual Israel, has a "due time" for making known the riches of his grace to the non-elect world of mankind. And the "elect" of spiritual Israel and of natural Israel are to be the channels of this Divine grace and mercy, which, during the Millennial Age, will flow as a river of salvation, to which all mankind will be invited to come and drink freely.


It may astonish some that God requires even more than Justice, which is his legal standard. In his permission of sin and its wage of death he has shown the sinner his own mercy or love. And it is for the sinner's benefit and for the good of all, that God requires that all who will have the full benefit of his mercy shall be required to cultivate this mercy quality in their own hearts.

As the sinner attempts to conform his life to the perfect standard and finds himself unable to keep God's Law and obliged to come for mercy to the Throne of Grace, he is informed that he can have that mercy only upon condition that be will exercise similar mercy toward those who trespass against him, his ideals and interests. Humility is a quality very necessary to every creature. Pride is a foe which besets not merely the weak and imperfect, but which overcame the great angel of light, Lucifer, and transformed him from a faithful servant of Jehovah into Satan, the Adversary of God.

We are glad, therefore, that Divine Wisdom requires humility as one of the conditions of our acceptance with him. This requirement assures us of the security of the Divine Empire against all treason in the future; for none will be admitted to the eternal life conditions either now or in the Millennial Age, except the humble. Let us hearken then to the lesson of our text and conclude, with the words of the Apostle, "Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time." (1 Pet. 5:6)

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