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Comfort Ye My People
AT 3 o'clock the Academy of Music was filled to overflowing, and it is estimated that about 600 stood during the service, besides those who occupied the large number of chairs which were placed on the rostrum, and some say close to two thousand were turned away.
This service had been advertised for a long time, and many thousand copies of the People's Pulpit (see cut of reduced facsimile of back page) were given out by the faithful Volunteers. Naturally this subject and the fact that Pastor Russell had just returned from a visit to Palestine and Jerusalem awakened a great deal of interest among the Jews, and many were inside the Academy and heard the sermon, while many others waited a long time outside hoping that some of those inside would leave and then they could secure their places. They waited in vain, however, as those within were too deeply interested to leave. We report the sermon in part, as follows:
Text: "Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God. Speak ye comfortably to Jerusalem, and cry unto her that her appointed time is accomplished, that her iniquity is pardoned; for she hath received of the Lord's hand double for all her sins" (Isaiah 40:1,2).
Christendom, with united voice, admits that all of the Divine Revelation came to and through the Hebrew people. Listen to the argument of the Apostle Paul, "What advantage, then, hath the Jew? or what profit is there of circumcision? Much every way; chiefly, because that unto them were committed the oracles of God"--the Divine message respecting the Divine purposes, present and to come. The Apostle again informs us that the entire Gospel message was briefly comprehended in the Creator's promise to Abraham, "In thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed" (Galatians 3:8). [CR104]
"TO THE JEW FIRST."
It was the most natural thing imaginable for the Jewish nation to suppose that the giving to them of the Law at Mount Sinai, through the mediatorship of Moses, was the fulfilment of the promise to Abraham. Nevertheless they were mistaken.
Israel's Mediator, and the sacrificing priests, and the sacrifices they offered, and their Tabernacle, with its Holy and Most Holy, and the Temple, and all the features of the Law Covenant were types or foreshadows of the "better sacrifices," higher Priesthood, better Mediator, and glorious blessings of eternal forgiveness and reconciliation yet to be accomplished. Nevertheless the period of Israel's types was not wasted. Not only were the types there given, but at the same time a special class of agents were selected: Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and all the Prophets and worthy ones of that age, holy, consecrated to God, and accepted as agents qualified for the Kingdom conditions. Of these the Scriptures declare, "They fell asleep." They are still asleep in the dust of the earth, awaiting the glorious resurrection morning, and a grand share then with Messiah in the work then to be accomplished. In their lifetime, they were styled the Fathers, because Messiah was foretold to be of the posterity of Abraham, and also "David's Son."
But other Scriptures, without contradicting these statements, show us distinctly that "David's Son" and "Abraham's Seed" is to be Lord and Father of both David and Abraham. Thus we read, "Instead of thy fathers shall be thy children, whom thou mayest make princes in all the earth" (Psalm 45:16). David's son, Messiah, will be David's father, or life-giver, when he will raise David from the dead. Similarly he will be the father of all of those ancient worthies; and as David's Lord, and "Lord of lords," it will be his pleasure to appoint to Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and all of the Ancient Worthies, and Prophets, and faithful ones a glorious share with himself in the great Messianic Kingdom, which he is about to set up for the ruling and blessing of Israel and all the nations of the earth. Will not this be a grand honor to Abraham and his Seed! Could we expect that the Almighty would honor and use in such a high position any except the faithful? Surely not. When Messiah shall make these Ancient Worthies "Princes in all the earth," as representatives of his invisible Kingdom, will not this mean honor and dignity to the Jews first?
"COMFORT YE MY PEOPLE."
Our text is one of three declarations in the Old Testament, which assure us that there is a "double" connected with Israel's history. That is to say, Jewish history naturally divides itself into two exactly equal parts; the first of which was a time of favor, intermingled with disciplines, but favor nevertheless. The second of these parts has been one of disfavor and exclusion from Divine fellowship. As foretold by the Prophet, Israel for many centuries has been without prophet, or priest, and without ephod and without communion with God; whereas, at one time they were God's favored people. They now, according to their own admission, are so thoroughly rejected that they have no communication whatever, no light to shine upon their pathway. The Prophet's words have been fulfilled, "Let their table become a snare before them: and that which should have been for their welfare, let it become a trap. Let their eyes be darkened, that they see not" (Psalm 69:22,23). They have stumbled; they are blinded; but, thank God! their blindness is not to be perpetual. The period of their blindness is the second part of the "double"; with the fulfilment of that "double" their blindness will begin to vanish, and "All the blind eyes shall be opened." Of that time the Lord declares that "He who scattered Israel will gather them."
We are impressed, not by fancy, but by the Word of God, that Israel's "double" is now fulfilled, that Israel's blessing has already begun, that the opening of Israel's eyes is now in progress. For this reason we have chosen for our text, "Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God. Cry unto Jerusalem and say unto her that her appointed time is accomplished, for she hath received at the Lord's hand double [the two parts of her chastisement] for all her sins." Because the "double" is completed, we may speak the words of comfort.
Thirty-four years ago we called attention to these facts, but few had ears to hear. When eighteen years ago we visited Jerusalem, having in mind chiefly the fact that the time for the regathering of Israel was nigh at hand, and that the set time to favor Zion had come, we found no hearing ears amongst the Jewish people; and Zionism had not then been dreamed of. Our communications with the representatives of the Baron Hirsch Immigration Fund, and also with the executors of the Sir Moses Montefiore Jewish Relief Fund, met with scant recognition. Nevertheless, we felt sure that Israel's "double" had been fulfilled, and that her morning of joy would soon break.
Meantime, how much has happened during those eighteen years! Zionism has risen and engendered the hope of the "chosen people" in every land, and turned their eyes toward the land of promise; not that all are thinking of returning thither, but that every Jew who retains faith in the God of his fathers, and in the Abrahamic promise, is now looking and hoping for the time of blessing, long foretold. They know not about their "double"; they have not been studying the Holy Scriptures, but the teachings of their ancients, as presented by the Talmud. They have been making a very similar mistake to that of Christian people, who have been studying the creeds of the "dark ages" instead of the Word of God.
THE THREE "DOUBLES."
Glance with me at three different statements by the Lord through the Prophets of Israel respecting Israel's "double" of experience: the first, an experience of God's favor; the second, an experience of equal length without divine favor. Notice first Jeremiah's prophecy (Jeremiah 16:18). After telling of Israel's disfavor, and then of their regathering, the Lord declares, "And first I will recompense their iniquity and their sin double"--some of the recompense with favor, and some without favor. Jeremiah's prophecy looks down to the "double" from his own day, which was more than six hundred years before the second part of their "double" began.
Turn now to Zechariah's prophecy, and note that prophetically he takes his standpoint at the very time when the second part of the "double" began. His words are, "Even today do I declare that I will render double unto thee (Zechariah 9:12).
Come next to our text, and note that the Prophet Isaiah stands with us, and views the matter from the standpoint that the "double" of experience has been fulfilled: "Speak comfortably unto Jerusalem, cry unto her that her appointed time is accomplished, because she hath received at the Lord's hand double [two equal parts] for her sins." It is our understanding that this "double" reached fulfilment in the year 1878 A.D., and since that date we have been declaring to the best of our ability, as the Lord granted opportunity, these comforting words to Israel, assuring God's chosen people that their period of disfavor has ended, and that they are gradually returning to prosperity; that Divine favor began with them in 1878. Yea, more than this, our sermons which to some extent reflect this feature of the Divine program relating to Israel's restoration to Divine favor, are being read to a considerable extent by Hebrews as well as by Christians; their eyes are gradually opening, as the Scriptures foretell they shall do.
But how may we know when the turning point of Israel's "double" took place? How may we know that the "double" was completed in 1878? We reply that the answer to the question necessitates an acknowledgment of Jesus as the Messiah. Israel's rejection of him as their King marks the turning point of God's favor, as the prophecy of Zechariah, just quoted, distinctly shows. Neither Christians nor Jews have appreciated the full import of the incident mentioned in the Gospel; that five days before his crucifixion, Jesus rode upon an ass, after the manner of Jewish kings, into the city of Jerusalem, a multitude surrounding him, and going before him, shouting, "Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he that cometh in the name of Jehovah!" The Prophet Zechariah called attention to this incident centuries before it occurred, and then gives the Lord's words, "Even today do I declare, I will render double unto thee."
Israel's history as a nation began with the death of Jacob, when he gave his blessing to the twelve tribes. The period from that time to the death of Jesus, according to the Scriptures, was 1,845 years; and a like period of disfavor, measuring from the day of Jesus' rejection, marks the year 1878, as the end of Israel's disfavor--the time when the message of comfort should go forth. However, Divine favor was only gradually taken from Israel, and altogether a period of thirty-six years intervene between the death of Jesus and the utter destruction of Jerusalem. Similarly we [CR105] should expect that the return of favor would be gradual, a like period of 36 years; and this would bring us to the year 1914, as the time when God's favor for his people will be publicly and openly manifested.
"THE SEED OF ABRAHAM."
The question now arises, What has God accomplished during the latter half of Israel's "double"? Did he pass by his chosen people to directly bless the Gentiles, or how shall we understand Divine Providence with respect to this matter?
We answer that Almighty God had one feature of his plan which he did not make known directly and explicitly to Abraham or any other prophet; he kept that feature of his purpose a secret. It is this: Messiah could not be a man and yet accomplish the great things which Jehovah intended, as stated in his Word. The Law called for an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth and a man's life for a man's life. In this God set forth his principle governing his course of dealing with men. As by man (Adam) came the sentence death, and through heredity upon all of his offspring, even so the Divine law purposed that there must be a sacrifice of one human life to offset the one human life condemned to death. The one who would thus meet the demands of Justice on behalf of the race would have the right to give eternal life and human perfection to every member of Adam's race willing to accept it on the terms of the Divine law. It was for this reason that Christ should die, "the just for the unjust."
As a reward for his obedience to the Father even unto death, Christ was raised from the dead to the Divine nature. In this exalted condition he is capable of being a Mediator and of doing a work for Israel and for the world much higher and broader than Moses could effect. Moses, the typical mediator, made atonement for a year with the blood of beasts; but Messiah with his own blood makes perpetual atonement for the sins of all the people. This is the great Messiah (Jesus) who suffered the death of the cross--for the Jews and for the Gentiles--"for all the people." This is the glorified Messiah, who as the spiritual seed of Abraham is about to bless Israel's Ancient Worthies, and to "make them princes in all the earth"; ministers of his Kingdom for the ruling, blessing and instruction of whosoever will, out of the present sin and death conditions, to life eternal to full human perfection, with the earth as Paradise restored.
MEMBERS OF MESSIAH.
But, some one may say, Where do Christians come in in connection with this Divine arrangement? And if God's dealings with the world are to be through Israel, and not through the Church, why has there been so long a delay? Why did not the glorified Messiah at once set up his Kingdom, and bring forth the Ancient Worthies from the tomb to be its earthly representatives? Oh, here is another part of the mystery of God! Isaac, Abraham's son, was typical of Messiah, the spiritual seed, but before Isaac began the work of dispensing the blessings to his brethren and to his children, he first took a bride, and this act also was allegorical or typical. In the antitype, Messiah, the glorified Jesus, partook of the Divine nature according to the Father's invitation, and he is to take a Bride who is to be his joint-heir on the spirit plane--to share with him the glory, honor and service of his Messianic Kingdom. The period of Israel's disfavor, as a nation, has been the time in which a special class has been called of the Father and begotten of the Holy Spirit to joint-heirship with Christ as his Bride.
But did God pass by the natural seed of Israel to give these spiritual privileges to the Gentiles--to gather from the Gentiles a people, figuratively, to constitute the Bride of Messiah? Nay. The Scriptures assure us that this spiritual privilege went first to the Jews; they show us that during the three and a half years of Jesus' ministry, and during the thirty-six years following it, the gospel message was given almost exclusively to the Jews, and gathered from that people as many as were found to be "Israelites indeed without guile," as many as were not only of the circumcision of the flesh, but also who were of the circumcision of the heart. God did not continue to deal with his chosen people, but after having gathered from them as many as were worthy of the spiritual blessing and exaltation--only then was the message sent to the Gentiles, to gather from the Gentiles a number sufficient to complete the fore-ordained and predestined number who will constitute the Bride.
So then, my brethren, in proving from the Scriptures that Israel's "double" is about completed; that Israel's blindness is about to be taken away, and that Israel's exaltation as the earthly representatives of Messiah's Kingdom is near at hand, we are proving to ourselves another thing; namely, that the full number called from amongst the Gentiles to participate with Christ on the spirit plane, as members of his Bride class, will soon be completed (Romans 2:25-32).
The Acceptable Sacrifice
Is it hard, O my brother or sister,
Some sweet human joy to lay down?
Remember as priests we must serve him,
'Ere we wear kingly glory or crown.
Is the sacrifice thou'rt called to offer
Some precious thing close to thy heart?
Does it seem life itself is relinquished
If thou from this treasure must part?
Remember without spot or blemish
The lamb for the altar must be,
Think not strange that what most thou dost cherish
He should ask as an offering from thee.
Then willingly, joyfully, gladly,
Thy sweet smelling sacrifice, bring,
And fulfill thy atonement-day service
As priest, if thou would'st be made King.
Oh! Haste then, thy best gifts bring hither,
By faith's fervent prayers well perfumed,
And place them with zeal on the altar,
And leave there till all are consumed.
Such sacrifice, under Christ's merit,
Jehovah has never reproved,
But will in His sight be well pleasing,
"Acceptable in the beloved."
He appoints to the mourners in Zion
For heaviness, fullness of joy,
For ashes, perfection of beauty
And happiness without alloy.
Then grieve not O Soul at thy losses
Nor count any sacrifice great;
Who bear His mild yoke with endurance
Immortality's crown doth await.
Behold how the strong ones are falling,
Be faithful and watch unto prayer,
Joint sacrifice now, in His suff'ring,
But soon in His glory, joint-heir.
Gertrude V. G. Calkins
Interview with Prominent Jews
THE discourse on "Jerusalem" caused so much interest among the Jews that a few days afterwards several prominent Jews called upon Pastor Russell for an interview. At one of the conventions this summer, while speaking upon the questions concerning the Jews, Pastor Russell said:
"I am pleased to tell you that the Lord seems to be rather indicating there is to be work done among the Jews. We preached in Jerusalem from Isaiah 40:1-2, "Comfort ye, comfort ye, my people, saith my God. Speak ye comfortably to Jerusalem," etc., and there were quite a number of Jews present on that occasion, and some of them were very greatly moved. The principal Jewish man in all Palestine was present. He is treasurer and business manager of the Zionist associations of the world and is located there now. He is the head of all their business enterprises, in advance even of the president, although the president is the higher official of course; but he is the highest man, practically, among them. His name is Doctor Levy. His remarks to some of the friends were more than anything he said to me. He greeted me very cordially after the meeting and said he was sorry there were not more of his co-religionists there. There was a little prejudice against the hall we used. It was known to be a hall owned by one of those converted from Judaism to Christianity, in which an endeavor would be made to convert the Jews and make them Christians, and they were opposed to going to that hall. If he had not had a special invitation he would not have been there himself. But somebody took him a very special, urgent invitation, and on the strength of the assurance of that invitation he was present. He said, "I wish you could remain longer; I would be glad to have our Jews here in the city get acquainted and hear what you have to say." But I could not stay. You know everything was mapped out ahead. I was obliged to tell him I could not remain. Then there were others there to speak, and he spoke to some of them. He said, "Why is it Christian people in general do not have such a message as this man brings? How is it all are against us? Instead of having a sympathetic word, they are all against us." He seemed to be touched by the fact that we had nothing to say against them, but rather pointed out the blessings of God that were coming to them. He indicated he intended to write to some of his New York friends that they might attend the meeting there, when he learned from some of our party that the subject there would be from the same text. I do not know to what extent he brought anyone to the meeting at Brooklyn, but there was a good attendance, and many were turned away, unable to gain admission. Those who were present gave excellent attention for nearly two hours. There was a corridor full of people waiting to take their places, hoping some would go out, but they did not go out, seeing what an interest there was not only amongst Christians but also amongst Jews. The Jews were astonished that any Christian should speak of the prosperity of Judaism, and what blessings God had for the Jews; that was something they could hardly understand. Three Jews called on me to see if they could find out what I meant, what I was going to try to do. Was I going to try to get hold of the Jews and make Christians of them? I told them no, the sermon was not preached at all for the Jews; it was for Christian people, but that the Jews were as welcome as anybody else, and that I was glad if anybody heard anything that was interesting to them in the sermon; but we intended making no special endeavor to convert the Jews. I told them, on the contrary, we understood that God had one plan for the Jews and another for the Gentiles, and then I briefly outlined to them the heavenly and higher calling, calling attention to the fact there were no promises made to them of a heavenly kind; that from Genesis to Malachi there was not a heavenly or spiritual promise mentioned; that they were all earthly promises. They agreed to that. I said, All of those promises are to be fulfilled to you, and the time is near at hand. They were good listeners. One of them was editor of a paper, and the other a publisher of a paper, and they were deeply interested to hear what the object was; they thought there must be something or other behind the scenes, and their thought was, Why would it be so? What are you going to do? Where is the trap? We are looking for the snare that would catch the bird. I told them we had no snare at all. We merely had a good message, that we had a good deal of sympathy with the Jews, and we saw God had cast them off at a certain time. They admitted all of that; they could not think otherwise. We told them that we believed God, that we believed the Prophets, that we acknowledged those prophets of the Old Testament the same as they did; that many Christian people had abandoned the Old Testament, thought it was all fulfilled and past, but we followed the Old Scripture suggestions that many of those things were yet future--indeed most of them; that only a small portion had ever been fulfilled, and God in his due time would fulfill all of those promises to the Jews; and just as soon as this spiritual class was selected, forthwith the message would go to the Jews, and the awakening referred to in this valley of dry bones would take place. We called their attention to the fact that it was Israel's hope that they were to be revivified and they would begin to awaken, and I said to them, What has awakened you now to Zionism is a part of God's promises coming at the right time, but it has nearly spent its force; the power that is behind Zionism is merely the power of patriotism. You feel as though you Jews have no home. The Germans speak of the fatherland, and the others speak of some other land; they have a home land. And you say, We Jews have no home land. You would like to have a home land, and it is a kind of a patriotic spirit that is moving Zionism as far as it can, rather than anything practical. Now, I said, Zionism has nearly spent its force, and it has nearly gotten you ready for the power that is going to move you. The power that is going to move the Jews is the power of God through the prophets. God is going to move you as none of this patriotism ever did in the past. And then they had good ears to hear, and I went on and outlined the "Times of the Gentiles," and the "Seven Times," and how they would end in 1915. Also the fact that God had told the Jews in Leviticus that there would be seven times trial, etc.; that we thought these were the same seven times mentioned when God took away Zedekiah, the King of Judah, who was the last king they had, and that the seven times dated from there. Their eyes sparkled and they listened attentively. I think they were there nearly two hours, just in the parlor talking about it--I did nearly all the talking. Well, they said, we thought that if this is not an endeavor to turn the Jews to make Christians out of them, if it is not that, this would be a wonderful power among our people, and we would like to have you address a meeting. Would you? I said to them that if it were anything like a political meeting I would not wish to address it at all; that we did not mingle in politics at all, but if any of them would have an ear to hear, and would like to know about what God has for them as a nation of people, we would be glad to talk to them as much as we have time. You see I am very busy and I could not give you a great deal of time, but if we could have some one large meeting, perhaps then I could talk to a good many Jews together, and I would be very pleased to do so."
Brother Russell afterward said, at one of this year's conventions, Well, they are thinking it over. I did not know what they would think, and do not know what they will do; they had come merely to see what was the motive behind it, to learn if we were trying to trap them. They were afraid if they would push it along we might really catch some of them. That is what they are afraid of. But they all acknowledged and said, Why, this is the most powerful thing we have ever heard. And one of those men said, "I was an unbeliever when I came in here, but now you have convinced me there is something in the Bible for the Jew, and that there is truth in the Bible." And so you and I are learning more and more every day, that that is the wonderful power, both for the Jew, the Gentile and the Christian; it is our Book. Primarily it is for the Christian, but there are certain good things in it for the Jews and for ALL the families of the earth. The Jews are waking up all over the country. I presume that a synopsis of the discourse, which was published in eleven Jewish and Yiddish newspapers, will reach probably half a million of Jews all over the world."
Subsequently Brother Russell received an invitation to address a JEWISH MASS MEETING in the great HIPPODROME THEATRE of New York City.
A copy of the invitation, and Brother Russell's response to the same and a report of the meeting, which took place as per arrangements, will be found farther along in this Report.
THE gentle sighing of the wind among the pines,
The joyous singing of the lark at break of day,
The rippling of the water-brooks through cooling shade,
The patter of the softly falling rain at night,
Are sounds less sweet by far than His most precious
No art can show a form so gracious and so fair,
No master's hand hath drawn a smile so sweet,
Nor could depict the majesty of that pure brow;
No canvas ever glowed with such a holy light
As shines from His most radiant image in my heart.
The dearest earthly friend may fail in time of need,
The sweetest and the loveliest grow cold at heart,
The nearest may not heed the throbbing heart's sad cry,
The gayest throng may hold the loneliest solitude,
But Jesus, Jesus never fails my call to hear.
Oh, may the music of Thy name more clearly fall
Upon my ears attuned to catch that sweetest sound!
Oh, may Thine image in my heart so bright become
That I by gazing may be changed into the same;
Oh, blessed Jesus, let Thy presence ne'er depart,
Oh, come and reign forevermore within my heart!
Souvenir Book Mark Text: "Keep thy heart with all diligence."
I AM very pleased to be with you. I am not down on the program for this morning, and will speak to you later, but I thought this would be a testimony meeting, and I would like to put in an appearance and say that I am here, and that I am glad to see you-- glad to see so many faces I recognize; and I am glad to see some that apparently I have not seen before--evidencing the fact that there are some still coming to the knowledge of the truth day by day and year by year.
Now I have only a few moments to speak, and simply will say, "How do you do?" and "Good-bye." Brother Hollister is to speak in a few minutes; he was anxious I should speak instead of him, but I would not do that because he would not speak instead of me this evening.
I was thinking of something I might say to you at this time, that perhaps this will be the best opportunity for mentioning, namely: That we have some little souvenirs of the conventions of 1910. Some of you doubtless have seen them, and others have not. I will describe them to you. Each one contains four sermons that you see all at a glance, [CR108]
A Wonderful Likeness of Our Savior
Said to be "Taken from one cut in emerald by command of Tiberius Caesar, and which was given from the Treasury of Constantinople by the Emperor of the Turks, to Pope Innocent VIII, for the redemption of his brother, then a captive to the Christians."
The following translation from the Latin is said to be the statement of Publius Lentulus, to the Senate of Rome, during the term of Tiberius Caesar--part of his report on prominent affairs in Judea.
"There appeared in these our days a man of great virtue, named Jesus Christ, who is yet living amongst us, and of the Gentiles is accepted for a Prophet of truth, but his own disciples call him the Son of God. He raiseth the dead and cureth all manner of diseases. A man of stature somewhat tall, and comely, with a very reverend countenance such as the beholders may both love and fear. His hair of the color of philbert, full ripe, and plain almost down to his ears; but from his ears downward somewhat curled, and more orient of color, waving on his shoulders. In the midst of his head goeth a seam or partition of his hair, after the manner of the Nazarites; his forehead very plain and smooth; his face without spot or wrinkle, beautified with a comely red. His nose and mouth so formed as nothing can be reprehended; his beard somewhat thick, agreeable in color to the hair of his head, not of any great length, in the midst of an innocent and mature look. His eyes are gray, clear and quick. In reproving he is terrible; in admonishing, courteous and fair spoken: pleasant in speech, mixed with gravity. It cannot be remembered that any saw him laugh, but many have seen him weep. In proportion of body, well-shaped and straight; his arms and hands right and delectable to behold; in speaking, very temperate, modest and wise. A man for singular beauty surpassing the children of men."
Respecting this portrait, an expert phrenologist, Prof. E. G. Walters, says:--
"The fact that it is a profile, is one point in its favor. Note the great length of the head from the extreme back-head to the root of the nose. This type of head is what phrenologists term 'dolichocephalic head,' which gives the owner a great love of investigation, study and thought; also love of science and domestic traits. The distance from the opening of the ear to the root of the nose equals the distance from the same center to the extreme back-head (minus hair), something I have yet to see in others.
"The very high coronal region, or top-head, is also remarkable. If an imaginary line be drawn from the opening of the ear to any point of the top-head, the space will at once be perceived to be very great. Another very remarkable fact is that were we to use this imaginary line as a radius it would describe a perfect arc or semi-circle starting from the root of the nose clear back to the base of the back-head (minus hair) thus giving all the organs along the line an equal development, which implies an evenness of disposition, completeness of character--perfection. Spirituality, located in the lateral parts of the anterior region of the top-head, looms up conspicuously. The theoretical and practical developments are equal. While I have not a view of the width of the head, yet from the general appearance there must be sufficient degree of executiveness, attack, tact and economy. Do not fail to catch the outline at benevolence and follow it to the extreme back-head. Such 'Human Nature' and 'Spirituality' create marvelous intuitive powers. And such parental love and friendship as here appears! Its owner would instinctively 'pick up little children and bless them.' Such an one, it would be easy to believe, wept over Jerusalem, and would have 'gathered its children as a hen gathereth her brood' (parental love). His large friendship and benevolence would prompt him to willingly lay down his life for the world.
"Notice the full arch of the brow--a perfect arc, caused by the extraordinary development of calculation, order, color, weight and size, all equal. The evenness, fullness and roundness of the forehead are beautiful to behold. As viewed by the science of phrenology, the head is of unusual size (25 or 26 inches in circumference) and perfect in all its parts. Indeed, this head is evenly developed at all points, no one organ, apparently, predominating.
"If this picture were of recent origin I might think it the work of some phrenologist, who alone could devise such a head for the Christ. But, as it is not modern but ancient, I feel persuaded to believe it genuine."
[CR109] so that every time you see that little souvenir you think of those four sermons; and if you do that every day that will mean a great many sermons inside of one year. These souvenirs are for all present at this convention who have not already had them, and not only those who are here that belong to the Chicago church, and those who are visiting, but all the different classes that are represented here. So that when you go to your home you can describe this matter to them and send in a list to the Watch Tower office through one of the brethren, and say how many there are in the class, and that he was appointed to write and get these souvenirs. They are free, and yet they are priceless--they are priceless because they are free. They will not be given out for money; you cannot buy one for any money. So in two senses they are priceless--like the grace of God. You have not money enough to buy the grace of God, and yet you can have it on certain terms, and the terms are that you shall ask for it. So with these souvenirs: you must ask for them, and say they were promised, and get them in the regular way.
They are thin, like paper, made of celluloid, cut into the shape of a heart, and then on each side they are printed. On the one side is a wreath of forget-me-nots at the top. And that will remind you to forget not the Lord and all his benefits. Forget not the brethren who represent the Lord; forget not the convention that you are enjoying here; forget not the assembling of yourselves together; and forget not to continually look to the Lord in connection with his mercies, and to avail yourself of all the privileges that are ours in this wonderful day.
Then underneath that is this text of Scripture, "Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is." That text has a whole lot in it, you see. It reminds us of our consecration by which we become sons of God, and that we already enjoy this blessed relationship. We are in covenant relationship with our God. "Beloved, now are we the sons of God." We have come into this blessed union with him.
This reminds us of another thing, a matter that has perhaps occurred to you frequently. I have had many say to me, "Brother Russell, it seems to me I enjoy restitution things, I can understand them better; I think God must really mean I shall be of the restitution class because I can think about the beautiful flowers and beautiful fruits, and beautiful trees, and all the beautiful things of Paradise restored, but I cannot understand, cannot imagine those spiritual things; I am just lost when I try to think of those." And I say to them, "My dear brother, that is the way with all the rest of us; you are no different from the rest; nobody understands spiritual things. God does not even pretend to explain them. He says you cannot understand them. He tells us, 'Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither hath entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.' You see God knew you could not understand it; he did not waste time and space in the Bible to put it in; it would only have been a stumbling block to you; you would have said, I cannot understand that as well as the earthly. But God tells us in advance that we cannot understand these things, therefore you are not to suppose you understand them."
But this text tells us something. It tells us God has certain things in reservation. They are there, they are genuine, and the fact that God tells us they are better than the restitution blessings for mankind, is our very best assurance; and we know that he knows the good, and he knows the better, and he knows the best. He wishes us to have the best things, and, by his grace, let us take them.
There is this text, then, on the heart: "It doth not yet appear what we shall be." We do not know how grand and glorious a spirit being is. We do not know what is meant by the glory, honor, immortality, that God has in reservation for us. We cannot understand it--but we do know this, that when he shall appear, we shall be like him. Oh, that settles it all! If we are going to be like him, that will do, we need not say another word. That satisfies any longing. Do you expect anything better than that? Surely not. If we shall be like him and see him as he is, and share his glory, that is enough--all in one word. We shall be like him who is the express image of the Father's person, he who has been highly exalted, far above angels, principalities, powers, and every name that is named. Another lesson there, you see.
Then turn the heart over and on the other side is a grape vine, branching around the sides of the heart. That reminds us of John 15. You see the large clusters of grapes there and they represent the large fruit of the Lord Jesus, which you and I are to copy after, even if we do not hope to bring forth such fruit as he did. That will remind you all of how Jesus is the vine, and we are the branches, "And herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit." Then we remember also what he says to us about pruning. Just as surely as you are a vine, and just as surely as he sees evidence of fruit in you, he will prune you--give you troubles, give you trials, give you earthly disappointments--that the juices of the vine may go to make up the more fruit. He prunes away the earthly attachments and your tendency to cling to earthly things, and when you have trials and tests, understand, then, that is one of the evidences that the Father loves you and that the great Husbandman regards you as a fruitful vine and that he wishes you to bring forth more fruit and fall in line with his providences. Then remember that any branch that does not bear fruit, the Husbandman takes it away--cuts it off entirely. So you and I say to ourselves, We must bear fruit.
Then let us not forget what the fruit is. It does not consist in imagination and all sorts of making types, etc. I am not speaking against types, dear friends, though I think some of the dear friends carry them to quite an extreme. I am sorry to see some have such a tendency to make types out of everything and take their own minds, as well as the minds of the others, away from the more important things. I am afraid the adversary is behind some of this typemaking. Therefore I warn you all to look carefully what types you make. If possible stick to the types explained in the Bible. Then let us bear these fruits, the fruits of the spirit. What are they? Meekness, cheerfulness, patience, longsuffering, brotherly kindness, love. If these things be in you and abound, they make you that you shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. That is what he wants. Whoever therefore helps himself, and helps the brethren, to fruits of the spirit, does that which is most particularly serving the Lord and his cause.
Now just underneath the vine, covering the roots, is a picture of the Lord Jesus, about the size of my finger nail. That is a wonderful picture. It is a copy of probably the oldest likeness of the Lord in the whole world. That likeness was found in Constantinople. The history that attaches to it is this: Pontius Pilate, Governor of Judea, had it executed. It is an intaglio etched into an emerald stone. It was sent to Tiberius Caesar when he was the Roman emperor, a little gift from Pilate of a noble face. This was in the palace of the emperors for some time. When they moved the capital of Rome to Constantinople it went along. It was found there in the old palace and was sent to Rome, and it is now in possession of the Vatican. It is certainly one of the oldest likenesses of the Lord, and this is a photograph of it. So you see that it is pretty near priceless in itself.
Then finally underneath this likeness of the Lord is this text of Scripture which each can apply to his own heart and life: "Keep thy heart with all diligence, for out of it are the issues of life." With you and me it is not the flesh, but it is the heart we are to keep. If you keep the heart, the Lord will assist in the direction of keeping your flesh. But the Lord is going to judge us by our hearts, by our intentions, by our endeavors. Therefore keep your hearts with all diligence--you cannot be too diligent about it-- for out of it are the issues of life,--life or death is the thought. You are either going to have eternal life or eternal death. All of those who have made their consecration have taken this position, and if it be eternal life then still it is to be determined whether you shall be one of the grand characters of the Little Flock, and have glory, honor, immortality, or whether you shall be one of the lesser characters who shall have life as a member of the Great Company, the Levitical class. I thank you.
Pastor Russell's Headquarters at the Mayville Inn
BROTHER RUSSELL knew that, on account of the convention, the letters and orders coming to the Brooklyn office would be fewer than usual. He therefore took practically the entire office force to the convention, there to continue the necessary features of the work in all departments. The Editor, as President of the International Bible Students' Association, felt it proper that he should be in attendance throughout the entire convention.
Nevertheless, as it was necessary for him to keep up his literary duties, it was advisable to isolate himself to some extent from the glad hands and loving hearts of the 4,000 plus, each of whom desired a few minutes' conversation and to shake hands every time they came within reach. Isolation seemed cruel, but necessary, in the interest of the King's business. Accordingly we rented the Mayville Inn, which was vacant but furnished. There about fifty of the friends were entertained, with the understanding that Brother Russell must not be intruded upon, and could be visited only at meal times and at the evening receptions. He spoke at the Auditorium five times:
(1) At the opening session.
(2) On Sunday morning, July 31.
(3) A special address to the Pilgrim brethren and to Elders and Deacons from everywhere on Thursday evening, August 4.
(4) To Colporteurs on Saturday morning, August 6.
(5) To the convention and to the public on Sunday, August 7.
On the latter occasion the house was crowded and an overflow meeting of about 700 was held in the adjoining theater, addressed by Brother John Kuehn.
SIX RECEPTIONS AT THE INN.
In view of the impossibility of personal contact with any but a very few at the Auditorium, he arranged for six receptions at the Mayville Inn, with admission only by cards. He had 3,600 of these cards printed, and additional permits were granted for the last reception on Saturday evening, August 6. The tickets were good only for the date they bore, so that the chartered steamer which took the friends twenty miles to the Inn and back might not be overcrowded. He desired that all should have a view of the beautiful lake and the opportunity for fellowship en route. The arrangements were enjoyed to the full and were seasons of refreshing fellowship and praise.
At the Inn the crowds each evening were received in the large parlors and halls and verandas and spacious lawns. Brother Russell used a corner of one veranda for a pulpit, and, after greeting the dear friends, spoke a few words along spiritual lines to assist in making the occasion one to be remembered from the standpoint of spiritual refreshment. Then, while hundreds sang some of our sweet hymns, other hundreds were invited into the large dining room, where with zeal they were served by loving brethren and sisters (recruits chiefly from the Colporteur ranks) with a little ice cream, cake, etc., soon exchanging places with the singers. These six receptions added to the comfort and joy and spiritual refreshment of all who participated. The numbers attending furnished a good gauge of the total number attending the convention. Yet there were probably nearly 1,000 who, for one reason or another, did not get to the receptions--some of them refrained from attending, fearing that there would not be room, and that they would crowd out others. There was, however, room for all, and more could have been entertained.
Opening of Convention
THE Convention opened with singing of Hymn No. 19, "His Loving Kindness." We were then led in prayer by the chairman, Brother John Kuehn, at the close of which he said: It is our great privilege, dear friends, to have the Mayor of Jamestown with us this morning and he wishes to speak a few words of welcome to you.
Address of Welcome by Mayor Samuel A. Carlson
DEAR FRIENDS: On behalf of the town of Jamestown and vicinity, I wish to extend to you all a cordial and hearty welcome. During the time I have been mayor of Jamestown it has been my privilege to welcome to this city various organizations. I have welcomed commercial, political, educational and fraternal organizations, but this is the first time it has been my privilege to extend the keys of this city to an organization, world-wide in magnitude, coming as it does from all parts of the world, coming here for one sublime purpose--the work of redeeming the world. I want to say to you that I feel deeply interested in this movement, although I do not understand much about it, but I can read in your faces that you are all truth-seekers, and I know that the great unrest in the political and social world means something--it is significant --it means that the great power which moves the world is preparing for a great change in the future. I believe that the day of restitution is near and I understand that that is one of the great purposes of this organization, to prepare the world for that new day of righteousness that is coming.
I want to extend to you the hand of welcome and I hope your stay will be a pleasant one, and I hope that you will enjoy the exhilarating breeze of this lake, 1,500 feet above the level of the sea, one of the highest bodies of water navigated by steam. I hope that you will partake of this beautiful atmosphere, not only physically and mentally, but perhaps this convention will be the means of working toward that which will uplift this community to that higher, that nobler, grander thing, to which mankind is destined, and I hope this convention will have this influence in this city and surroundings. Again I welcome you.
I AM very glad, dear friends, to be with you this morning. I recognize a great many of your faces. It gives me a great deal of pleasure to meet with so many of God's consecrated people who are loyal to the Word of God. I understand there are representatives here from various countries. I have not had the pleasure of meeting all of these various delegates, but I am sure the Lord intends that we shall have a great spiritual feast.
I trust you have come with your hearts prepared and that you are desirous of a blessing in your heart, and desirous also that the Lord may use you to bless one another, and that you will seek to pour out your blessings on every hand, not only here with those assembled for Bible study, but upon all the dear friends in this vicinity. Around this place live so many intelligent people there must be many Christians of all denominations, and I am glad we are meeting them here on interdenominational planes, Christians meeting Christians, and not on any denominational lines. I am glad we have no fence to divide us from God's people, that we have seen the folly of these fences, if I might so [CR111] express it, of having such denominational fences. Some of us were once inclined to think that we must think along the Presbyterian line, and others along the Methodist line, and others along the Baptist line, so we have divided and separated. Now, by God's grace, as we study the Word of God we are being drawn "Nearer, my God, to thee, nearer to thee," and in being drawn nearer to the Lord we are being drawn nearer to all those who are his; so I trust, dear friends, and in fact I believe that it must be so, that you are having greater love for the brethren, and I can go beyond that and say, that those who are truly the Lord's feel in their hearts a great stirring love for the world of mankind besides the Church of Christ, a greater sympathy for them, and a desire to do all you can to help them along. This is evidently the proper sentiment. This is the One faith, as the Apostle expresses it, "One Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father over all." How blessed it is to have that experience.
Once, perhaps, we also were more or less divided by sectarian lines, and thought we did God service by so dividing ourselves; but as we study his word we find it is adverse to any such divisions. "That they all may be one, as thou Father and I are one," was the Master's prayer on the very last night he was with his disciples. So I trust that is coming to be your and my sentiments, that we desire to be more and more at one with all who love the Lord Jesus and are begotten of the holy Spirit.
I was thinking, as I sat here, What is it that serves to unite our interests and has brought us to be specially Bible students, instead of as we formerly were, students of our creeds and theories, handed down to us from the past? I believe, in speaking for myself, that I also speak for many who have opened their hearts to me upon this subject: I can say this, that the very thing that is bringing infidelity to the whole world is the very thing that has been drawing my heart to the Lord. I will explain: In my own case it happened a good many years ago, with others it is happening day by day. The experience was this: The higher critics began to tear the Bible to pieces, took off the covers, and took out all the books, and practically told us that there was no Bible there, and that the people who wrote it were old dotards, and knew not what they were doing, and that the Lord and his disciples were fools because they thought the prophecies were inspired, and quoted those prophecies all through the New Testament. So, forty years ago these things aroused my mind and I said, Can this be true? This book upon which the world has been building for centuries, is it all a farce? The first effect upon me was to shake my faith and I threw away the Bible entirely, but afterward in God's providence he led me to a re-examination of the Bible. I took off the spectacles received from my parents and began to study the Bible myself, comparing Scripture with Scripture, the Old and New Testaments from Genesis to Revelation.
As I studied, the harmony began to appear more and more. Now every day my faith becomes stronger and better established, because I know in whom I have believed and why. That is the experience of very many of you here. You have been studying the word of God and that which has injured others, because of the higher critics, has made you more eager to study the word of God. They denounce it as fallible and of men, not worthy of credence, but the more you think of the Apostle's words, that God gave us this book "That the Man of God might be thoroughly furnished unto every good work," the more you are convinced that it is the Word of God. He also tells us in 2 Tim. 2:15, to "study to show ourselves approved unto God, workmen that need not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth." I believe that has been your experience and that I am expressing the sentiments of all who are gathered here from all of the states of the Union, Canada and from various parts of the world.
Well, dear friends, I am glad to be here in your company, and as the Chief Officer of your Association, THE INTERNATIONAL BIBLE STUDENTS' ASSOCIATION, I am glad to be here.
And I want to say to the Mayor of Jamestown and vicinity, We appreciate his words of cordial greetings extended to you this morning. We are glad to meet in Christian fellowship Christians from everywhere and we trust that Jamestown will not be the worse for our having been here, but better because of your influence in this vicinity --not meaning by this that there is any special lack of Christian character, but that every Christian should be growing day by day, and that the people of this vicinity ought to receive an impetus from this convention, and we too. Much will depend upon all here, not collectively, but individually. It will not do to say, that if we as individuals are careless of our deportment or words, that others will make up for it, but we must recognize that the whole is made up of individuals as the river is of drops of water; each one is accountable, and so let us seek to glorify God in our bodies and spirits which are his.
We have come here and will stay with the Celeron people in their midst and spend some money, but not for their "gim-crack" amusements. I fear they will be disappointed in this respect, but I hope they will see that there is something better to live for. The majority of people have very little to live for, and I sympathize with them. I tell you, dear friends, that if you should take out of my life the knowledge I have of Christ and God and the fellowship of the brethren in Christ and the interest in his Word, it would leave my life a blank. Now I say that the majority of the world have very little to live for, not only around this beautiful sheet of water called Lake Chautauqua, but all over the world, rich and poor everywhere; they are without God and have no hope. They do not even know why they are in the world; do not know what God's purpose was in bringing them into existence. How thankful, dear friends, we ought to be that God has so graciously favored us as to give us an interest in his book, and to gradually open our eyes of understanding. We sometimes sing "Wonderful words of life"--and they are words of life. What the poet expressed was far beyond anything that he knew, but which we realize to be the very grandest possible statement of the Truth, that these wonderful words of life have a power in them not only in restraining from sin, but a power of producing a happy life and joyous faith.
I do not know when I have seen a more contented and happy set of faces. I congratulate you that you have something inside shining out. I am glad of that hymn. God not only tells us the truth through Jesus, the prophets, and apostles, but all who receive the spirit of truth manifest it in their words, conduct and features. Send out the truth, then, dear friends. You and I have something to do with sending it out, and with how much blessing we will get every day from this convention. May it be a time long to be remembered, of joyful blessing and fellowship with God and with each other, a time of growing in grace, a time of being strong against temptations that may assail you afterwards. Here I remark, that our heavenly Father has so arranged matters that those who are his people, those who constitute the Church, are to have certain special trials, "The trial of your faith being more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honor at the appearing of Jesus Christ." That trial of your faith and mine must go on if we are to be overcomers. It will not therefore do to pray that we have no trials. I do not pray for trials but leave that to the Lord. I am not going to do as one brother said: Brother Russell, I have been praying that the Lord will send me some great trial. I said, Brother, you have a great deal of courage. I believe that the Lord will hold me in the trials which he sends me, and as the Scriptures say, he will provide a way of escape. So then, knowing that God intends to give us trials, let us be prepared for the trials. Let us remember, that if we have special privileges at this convention, in fellowship, being strengthened in our spiritual nature, growing in the power of his might, that it may be an offset for certain trials which may come to us some time after we have returned to the busy world. So as the bee lays up honey for the winter time, store up your spiritual refreshment for your return to your home; also as the bee lays up more honey than for itself, so in our various associations together as Bible students let us go back laden with the precious things we have heard for those behind, laden with the precious things from the Lord's words and filled with the spirit of the Lord Jesus Christ, able to be a comfort and to strengthen and build them up in the most holy faith.
Now, then, in conclusion let me say, It will not be possible to do as I have done on some previous occasions and smaller meetings; it will not be possible for me to have a private interview with all who would like to have one, two or five minutes. Five minutes for 4,000 people, we would have to stay here the remainder of this year. Our Jamestown friends would no doubt make us welcome, but we cannot afford to stay. Finding that impossible, I have arranged another way: My own lodgings at the convention are at the other end of the lake, at Mayville, and I want to invite every one of you to come up and see me. If you [CR112] all try to come up at one time you will block all the lines, therefore I have made provision for 500 on six different nights, that will take in 3,000--that may leave out a thousand who cannot get in, as I see they are still coming. Anyway, we have made provision for the six nights, 500 for each night. We have invitation cards, so that there will be no difficulty about those who are going. Get a card or you don't get in; the card will not cost you anything, except that you write your name and address. A plain luncheon will be served on the boat, as you will not get to Mayville until 7 o'clock. As the boat leaves at 9:30 you will need to start at 9 o'clock--that will get us rid of you, you see. That will leave a twenty or thirty minutes' walk to the boat, and then a nice ride of an hour and three-quarters and give a splendid time for fellowship. I know from previous experiences that the whole theme you will have to talk about is God's word, the Truth in general. We cannot get too much of God's Word and the farther you get into the Truth, the emptier you will be of the world's vanity and the more peace you will have on the journey in the narrow way of all those who are walking heavenward.
So I close by wishing you all a very happy time at this convention. The Association's Secretary and myself have done our very best to serve your interests in appointments, etc. Of course, like everything human, it is imperfect. You will probably not have it as nice as you will when you get to heaven. But be sure that they have done the best they can for you, but if anything is unsatisfactory, please report to the Information Bureau. It has been reported that we are all colored people. I hope we have the proper color--by this I do not mean to say anything discouraging to our colored friends who are with us. We recognize all those who are the Lord's, without respect to nationality or color; we love all those who love him. May we have a very joyful time at this convention; let us ask his blessing. (Brother Russell then offered prayer.)
The Desire of All Nations (Reprint from Jamestown Journal) Forty-five Hundred Bible Students Here --Remarkable Large Attendance at Annual Convention of International Association SERMON BY PASTOR C. T. RUSSELL Head of Association Spoke Before Immense Audience Sunday Morning on the Desire of the Nations--Large Audiences Also Assembled Sunday Afternoon and Evening and This Morning--Visitors Continue to Arrive for Convention but Everything Moves Like Clockwork
MEMBERS of Bible classes affiliated with the International Bible Students' Association arrived on every train Saturday evening and all day Sunday; still others reached the city this morning and more are expected this evening, tomorrow and even as late as Wednesday. A conservative estimate of the total number of persons present for the annual convention of the association at Celeron, which was opened Saturday morning and will continue through next Sunday, is 4,500, and it is safe to say that several hundred more persons will be here before the great gathering comes to a close.
Not only is the convention the largest ever held in Jamestown or at any point on Chautauqua lake, excelling all others in point of attendance by many hundreds, but it is one of the largest gatherings of the kind ever held in the United States. In spite of the fact that the burning of the Sherman house deprived the city of its largest hotel, the committee in charge of the arrangements for the convention went quietly at work and by one of the most effecting house-to-house canvasses ever conducted in this or in any city, succeeded in providing accommodations for the great army of visitors, and it is still a source of wonder to the great majority of the residents of Jamestown how the work was accomplished in such a highly successful manner without an aggressive campaign of publicity.
Everything connected with the convention moves like clockwork and thus far no hitch of any description has occurred, although the problem of handling between 4,000 and 5,000 visitors is a gigantic one. In speaking of the matter of providing accommodations for the thousands of visitors to the convention, one of the officials of the association stated that Jamestown is now really entitled to consideration as a convention city for the reason that it is taking care of the largest convention in its history and but seldom indeed does any city, large or small, have an opportunity of entertaining a larger gathering for such a long period. The visitors are being cared for in the hotels and homes of this city and at every point on the lake from Celeron to Mayville.
The Desire of All Nations
At the conclusion of the testimony meeting, Pastor Russell spoke on "The Desire of All Nations," and he was greeted by an audience of fully 3,500 persons, occupying practically every seat in the mammoth auditorium. The discourse was plainly heard in all parts of the hall and every word received the careful attention of the immense audience.
(Pastor Russell prefaced his remarks by saying:
The whole world, dear friends, in one sense or another is looking for something great, and we are not behind them, for we also are looking for something great.
For a long time the world of mankind has realized that conditions as they now are here are not satisfactory, and yet, they have realized that these conditions are not of our own making, and that they must be under divine supervision, and this has been a cause for a great deal of wonderment on the part of Christian people and others, as they have noted the terrible reign of sin and death, and have thought, How different things are from what they are in heaven.)
"The great Messiah, 'King of Glory,' has long been waited for by the civilized nations," he began. "For thirty-five centuries the Jews have waited for him as the great Prophet foreshadowed by Moses and foretold by him (Acts 3:22); and as the Great King foreshadowed by their Kings David and Solomon; and as their glorious priest typified by Aaron, but especially in the former's majesty as king and priest foreshown by Melchizedek--a priest upon his throne (Psalm 110:4).
"Free Masons have waited twenty-five hundred years for the same glorious personage, as Hiram Abiff, the great Master Mason whose death, glorification and future appearing are continually set before them by the letters upon their keystones. He died a violent death, they claim, because of his loyalty to the divine secrets typed in Solomon's temple. He must reappear, they claim, in order that the great antitypical temple may be completed and its grand service for Israel and for all peoples may be accomplished. They claim that his presence is to be expected speedily.
"Christians of every shade, in proportion as they are conversant with the Bible (Old Testament and New), believe, also, in a great temple builder who died because of his faithfulness to the divine plans for the spiritual temple, the elect church (1 Peter 2:4,5). Him they expect to come a second time, 'in power and great glory,' to complete the temple which is his body, and in and through that spiritual and glorious temple to bless Israel and all the families of the earth. His second presence in glory and power, but invisible to men, is believed to be imminent.
"The Mohammedans, also worshiping the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and David and Solomon, are also expecting a great heavenly messenger to bless them and all peoples by the establishment of a heavenly kingdom. They have awaited his coming for centuries. They believe his kingdom to be near at hand. [CR113]
"WHO IS THIS KING OF GLORY?"
"The same glorious personage will fulfill all these desires --these hopes. Is it not time that all of these peoples, fearing God and hoping in his promises, should come together in one hope, in one expectation? It must be so, for do we not read prophetically, 'The desire of all nations shall come!'
"We are well aware that great barriers lie between these multitudes; but we hold that they are chiefly barriers of superstition and ignorance. In the past they have pulled apart, and have slandered and persecuted one another. If now they will sympathetically draw near to each other surely they will find much to appreciate in each other's hopes and aims.
THE BASIS OF SYMPATHY.
"The fact that the Jews and Mohammedans, Catholics and Protestants and Free Masons, all base their faith on the Old Testament of the Holy Scriptures, is ground for the better understanding pleaded for.
"All Christians must accept the authority of the Hebrew Scriptures because the founder of Christianity, Jesus, and his special mouthpieces, the apostles, taught nothing contrary to the law and the prophets. Indeed, they quoted from the Old Testament in proof of every doctrine advanced. They claimed that they neither destroyed nor ignored the Old Testament, but merely noted its fulfillment.
"The error in the past has been the general disposition to appeal to superstition and prejudice and bigotry, rather than to facts and Scripture. We must reverse the lever in order to attain the good results--in order to see eye to eye.
WHAT ALL CAN AGREE TO.
"All agree that the world needs the divine blessing! All agree that we have been laboring under a mistake in supposing that education and civilization are alone necessary to secure human happiness. We perceive that the greater the civilization the greater is the unrest; and the broader the education the greater are the suggestions and opportunities for taking selfish advantage of others.
"All are agreed that only the later inventions, telephones, etc., and our modern and costly police precautions, make it possible to live in civilized lands and that, despite all these, murders are a hundred fold what they were fifty years ago. In those days a murder would be detailed and discussed for a year. Now we give little heed to several reported in each day's newspapers. Thousands are executed, other thousands are imprisoned for life and we pay little heed-- so gradually have we become accustomed to these horrors of our civilization and education.
"We oppose these with church and mission influences, with Sunday-schools, Y.M.C.A.'s, with courts, juvenile and superior, and yet they increase. We penalize the carrying of weapons and bombs and wisely prohibit inflammatory speeches; and the better informed know that Christendom is like a powder magazine which some unlucky friction between the classes may any day explode.
ALL HOPES REALLY ONE.
"Admitting that all mankind are imperfect, 'born in sin and shapen in iniquity,' we nevertheless cannot assent to the doctrine of total depravity--that there is nothing good in any man, or in all men. Each one who prays 'forgive us our trespasses as we forgive others' should concede that others, as well as himself, would prefer righteousness to sin, if the environment were different--if his appetite were not so perverse, if his will power were not so inadequate. So, then, whether Jew, Mohammedan, Catholic, Free Mason or Protestant, do we not all really desire the one thing? And do we not admit, after centuries of endeavor along different lines, that God alone can send us the aid which the whole world so greatly needs? We do!
"Let us now formulate this 'desire of all nations' from those holy Scriptures which we all acknowledge. Let us see that it is exactly what we all have been looking and praying for under different names: It is the Kingdom of God!--the Kingdom of Allah! Its rule is to be 'under the whole heavens,' however heavenly or spiritual the great ruler will be (Daniel 7:27). Under its beneficent and uplifting influence the glorious result will be that God's will shall be done on earth as completely as it is now done in heaven. This is exactly what the Scriptures declare-- that sin and ignorance will be done away; that the knowledge of the glory of God's character will fill the whole earth. It means a strong government exercised for the restraint of sin and for the freeing of mankind from slavery to sin --the slavery of inherited weaknesses entailed by Adam's disobedience. The great heavenly king, the son of David, who will do these things, according to the law and the prophets, will have many titles indicating various features of his greatness. 'He shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, the mighty Elohim, the Prince of Peace, and the Father (life-giver) of eternal life (Isaiah 9:6).'
"He is called the Savior by the Prophet Isaiah (14:15), for he shall 'save from their sins' and from the penalty of sin all who shall become his 'people.' And all who will wickedly refuse his rule of righteousness and his assistance out of sin and death conditions will be esteemed 'wicked' in the proper sense of that word; and of these we read: 'All the wicked will he destroy.'
LOVE RIGHTEOUSNESS--HATE INIQUITY.
"We have had too much of hatred and persecution because of the differences in our degrees of knowledge as expressed in our differences of belief. Let this cease. Let us unite in our love of righteousness and in our hatred of unrighteousness--in-equity. Let us cultivate such a sympathy for the coming reign of righteousness to be established by Messiah (by whatever name he and his kingdom may be handed down to us) that our characters shall be more and more influenced and transformed by the prophetic view. We are all agreed that Messiah's kingdom is nigh, even knocking at the door of the world. In the wonderful inventions of our day we have the very foregleams of that kingdom as outlined in prophecy. The necessities of the case also corroborate this: The tension between capital and labor will soon be to its limit and break; the grasp of monopoly will soon be so strong that the masses will be ground between the upper and the nether millstones; our high-tension living is calculated soon to have our race in the madhouse; specialists say, within one century. Let us believe the Word of God delivered by the prophets of old. Let us prepare our hearts for the Great King and know that such will have the chief blessing.
HE MUST REIGN--UNTIL.
"According to the Bible the reign of the promised Great King shall not be an eternal reign. Eventually the dominion of earth originally given to Adam and lost by disobedience and consequent incapacity, is to be restored to such of Adam's race as shall attain earthly perfection and Jehovah's approval. Messiah's empire will be a mediatorial one and, according to the Scriptures, will continue only one thousand years. But we are assured that the period will be quite sufficient for the great work to be accomplished. Father Adam, after being sentenced for sin-- 'Dying, thou shalt die,' experienced the dying process for 930 years. Contrariwise, the world will, under the Messiah's rule as king and priest, Melchisedek (Psalm 60:4), gradually rise up, up, up, out of sin and death conditions during a very similar period of time.
"Paradise restored will no longer be a garden merely, but the whole earth, as God's footstool, shall be made glorious (Isaiah 9:13). The promises of God to the children of Isaac and Jacob are not heavenly or spiritual, but earthly. From Genesis to Malachi there is not a suggestion of a heavenly or spiritual calling. If Christians have a heavenly calling it is no cause for offense to Mohammedans and Jews--neither of whom have conflicting hopes. There is no need for conflict--every reason for harmony.
TIMES OF RESTITUTION.
"Not only do the ancient prophecies foretell coming blessings of the Lord upon Jew and Gentile, bond and free, but the law typified the same. Every fiftieth year with the Jew was to be a jubilee year--a time of release from debts and from all bondage. The lesson is that Messiah's reign will be the great time of jubilation to men, to all who will accept and obey his rule. The cancellation of debts represents that God (through Messiah) will thus cancel the debt of original sin and set free Adam and his race. All will then be given a fresh start for life eternal. The setting free from bondage in the jubilee year typed man's release from the weaknesses inherited through Adam's fall. It will include the resurrection from the dead, the great prison house mentioned by the prophet (Isaiah 61:1).
"If we see this great fact about to be accomplished need we quarrel about how it is to be done? Since it offers [CR114] blessings to all who love God's righteousness, why dispute over details? Shall we contend with God and his plans and promises except to our injury? Let us rejoice with the Jew. God has decreed for the natural seed of Abraham a glorious share in the great work of blessing the world--to the Jew, first, this means a blessing; to the others, later. The Scriptures clearly teach that Messiah will establish the new covenant with Jacob--natural Israel. Let all who reverence the Lord acquiesce in his arrangements. And if the Jews shall some day see that the oath-bound promise to Abraham meant two seeds, let them be glad and rejoice in their portion. If the great Messiah soon to be revealed in power and great glory be composed of many members on the spirit plane, what matters it to Jacob, all of whose promises are on the earthly plane? Moreover, there is no room for jealousy anyway, for these 'elect' who shall be on the spirit plane are of all nations--the Jew being there given also the preferred place. Furthermore, the select or 'elect' few are not either Christians or Jews in the ordinary usage of those words, but saintly, holy ones chosen by the Lord from every sect and party, because of their love for righteousness and faithfulness under trials.
I WILL SHAKE THE EARTH.
"The context shows us that 'The desire of all nations' will be realized as the result of a great shaking of the heavens and earth and sea and all nations. This is prophetic of the great time of trouble, with which the collapse of present institutions will come about as precedent to the establishment of Messiah's kingdom--'the desire of all nations.'
"We are not left to speculate respecting the import of these words, 'Shake the heavens, the earth and the sea.' The great theologian, St. Paul, quoted this very passage in his epistle to the Hebrews (12:26-28). He pointed out that the literal shaking of Mt. Sinai and the terrible sights associated at the time of the inauguration of Israel's law covenant was but a feeble picture of the awful commotion which will prevail in its antitype--when Israel's new (law) covenant will be instituted at Mt. Zion in the end of this age at the hands of the antitypical Moses--Messiah.
"The prophet intimates that it will be a short, sharp, decisive shaking, quickly accomplished. And the Apostle explains that it will be so thorough-going that everything that can be shaken will be shaken and will be removed. In other words, everything that is in the nature of a temporary makeshift for righteousness, truth, equity, will be shaken out of the way--not be allowed to remain, because the Lord will make a thorough work. St. Paul intimates that the kingdom which the church is to receive will be the only institution which will stand the shaking time and that only because the 'Church of the first born, whose names are written in heaven,' will have the divine approval; they will 'be changed in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye'-- established enduringly on the heavenly plane at the right hand of God, principalities and powers being subject.
THE PRINCE OF PEACE.
"Notwithstanding the fact that Messiah's kingdom will be introduced by a period of universal trouble, anarchy, etc., which will overthrow civilization and uproot every sinful and imperfect human organization, nevertheless this will eventually lead to the most profound and most enduring peace. In that one great lesson humanity will learn the futility of its own endeavors, and will cry unto the Lord for help and for the desired peace--then 'the desire of all nations shall come.'
"Referring to this time of trouble the Prophet David declares of the Lord's work at that time, 'He maketh wars to cease unto the end of the earth. He breaketh the bow, and cutteth the spear asunder.' (Psalm 46:9.) Then wonderfully he announces the climax of it all, 'Be still and know that I am God. I will be exalted amongst the nations. I will be exalted in the earth.' The only true basis of peace is righteousness and on this firm foundation Jehovah through his Anointed One will shortly establish it (Psalm 46:10)."
THE WRATH OF GOD
THE wrath of God is love's severity
In curing sin--the zeal of righteousness
In overcoming wrong--the remedy
Of justice for the world's redress.
The wrath of God is punishment for sin,
In measure unto all transgression due,
Discriminating well and just between
Presumptuous sins and sins of lighter hue.
The wrath of God inflicts no needless pain,
Merely vindictive, or Himself to please;
But aims the ends of mercy to attain,
Uproot the evil, and the good increase.
The wrath of God is a consuming fire,
That burns while there is evil to destroy
Or good to purify; nor can expire
Till all things are relieved from sin's alloy.
The wrath of God is love's parental rod,
The disobedient to chastise, subdue,
And bend submissive to the will of God,
That love may reign when all things are made new.
The wrath of God shall never strike in vain,
Nor cease to strike till sin shall be no more;
Till God His gracious purpose shall attain,
And earth to righteousness and peace restore.
Mayville Reception, Peacock Inn Monday Evening of Chautauqua Convention
A SECOND detachment of Bible students, after the day's services, took a steamer for the upper end of the lake to attend Pastor Russell's reception. The lake journey was an enjoyable one along spiritual lines, the students rendering various well-known hymns effectively and discussing the convention topics of the day. They were as happy a crowd as ever passed over our beautiful lake.
At Peacock Inn the visitors crowded the lower floor of the house and the extensive lawn. Pastor Russell, after greeting each visitor, addressed them as a whole. He welcomed those already well known to him, as well as others whom he had not met previously. He congratulated them upon the wonderful day in which we are living; upon the wonderful Bibles from which we may study concerning the great divine plan of the ages. With an Oxford Bible in his extended hand he remarked: "I fear that even we fail to appreciate the value of this great book, which has exerted more influence in the world than all other books combined." He remarked that few preachers realize that the Bible has been in the hands of the public for only about one century. "Our oldest Bible societies," said he, "are this very year celebrating their centennial. When they were organized Bibles were only possessed by the rich. Now they are to be found in the homes of all--obtainable free by the destitute. Many are learning the value of Bible reference and the usefulness of Bible concordances in Scripture studies.
"Furthermore we are too apt to forget that general education has only now reached the masses. It is not yet thirty years since free schools were established in Great Britain. It is only about ten years since education has been made compulsory in all the most civilized lands. Thus God has favored our day in a two-fold manner, not only by giving us the Bible, but by giving the masses the intelligence necessary to its study.
"But, alas, just as these precious opportunities are in the hands of the masses--just as these blessings were given to humanity--just as Christendom was prepared for Bible study, the Lord allowed the Adversary to bring forward a most subtle influence in opposition to it. The foul-mouthed infidelity of the past has been supplanted by a far more dangerous enemy to Christian faith--the infidelity known as 'higher criticism.' It is dangerous because of its insidious character. It has entrenched itself in all the colleges and in all the theological seminaries. While all of our churches of all denominations ostensibly stand as defenders of the Bible, the citadel of faith is being captured by the great Adversary of God and the truth--Satan. He is deceiving, estranging and misleading the hosts of Christendom through the very theological professors and D.D.'s to whom they have been led to look for spiritual light and direction and whom they had supposed to be staunch defenders of the Bible as the inspired Word of God.
"This is a severe arraignment, but it is a generally truthful one, as each may demonstrate to himself. Most regretfully I am persuaded that four out of every five of all the ministers and Sunday school superintendents of Christendom have ceased to believe in the Bible as the divinely inspired revelation of the will and purposes of the Almighty. Some of these, nevertheless, claim to be earnest followers of Jesus as the Son of God and of divine origin. Yet how weak is their position! If Moses did not write the law and if it were not inspired, nor the prophecies inspired, what could we think of Jesus and his Apostles accepting those prophecies as inspired and founding all of their teachings thereupon? Most evidently higher critics who still believe in Jesus as the divine Son of God have not thought logically on the proposition and will reject everything pertaining to the Scriptures upon further reflection.
"I congratulate you, my friends, that while sorrowfully we behold the fulfilling of the Scriptures in the falling away of these our friends, we are not compelled by anything in reason nor in the Scriptures to suppose that their fate for such infidelity will be eternal torment. I congratulate you that, as Bible students, we are growing stronger in our faith day by day while, in fulfillment of the Scriptures, a thousand fall at our side and ten thousand at our right hand (Psa. 91:7). I congratulate you that the study of the Bible with the assistances which God is now providing is clearing up the mysteries which have perplexed us all our lives and is bringing to us greater appreciation of his glorious purposes and greater loyalty to him and more earnest desire to serve his cause of righteousness and to lift up the standard of the cross of Christ.
"Truly, as the Lord through the prophet expressed it, our feet have been kept from stumbling. Instead of stumbling-stone of greater intelligence of our day has lifted us to a higher plane of devotion and appreciation of the heights and depths and length and breadth of the love of God which passeth all understanding.
"Do not misunderstand me to be speaking harshly or unkindly of our dear friends who are stumbling over the educational opportunities of our day. On the contrary I sympathize with them. Once I stood exactly where they stand--once I, too, repudiated the Bible and the Word of God. I was as honest then as I am today, and feel bound to give others credit for equal honesty. They are blinded by the dazzling glare of the earthly science of our day. If they ever knew they have forgotten and dropped the light, the science which comes only from above. Some of them may be recovered from the snare of the Adversary, as I was. There is this difference, however; the majority seem to exult in their unbelief and to pride themselves and plume themselves on their opposition to the Bible, while my position was the very contrary of this. I deplored the necessity for abandoning the Bible. I considered it the rational thing to expect from the Supreme Creator some revelation of his purposes respecting mankind--the object of our creation; the purpose to be attained, and how and why.
"I have no doubt that many of you have had experiences similar to my own. Many of you have told me so. Let us hope that, as we have been recovered from the snare of the fowler, so also may some others be. Let us be prompt to lend the helping hand and an encouraging word. Let us realize that to the honest-hearted, the loss of the Bible must be a disaster to faith and hope, as it was in our own cases. Let us trust that there are many others, honest as ourselves, who will yet be recovered. Let us be encouraged to help them by a remembrance of how great a blessing came to us through the proper understanding of the Word of God."
BIBLE STUDY CONVENTION.
"One of the greatest conventions, both in point of attendance and enthusiastic interest, that have ever been held on the shores of Chautauqua lake is that of the International Bible Students' Association, now in session at Celeron. There are more than four thousand visitors at the convention, and from all reports they are delighted with the beauties of Chautauqua lake and with the arrangements which have been made here for their entertainment.
"These devoted Bible students are certainly given a cordial welcome to fair Chautauqua and industrial Jamestown. They come here in a quiet and unostentatious way in a spirit of devotion to the Book of books and a desire to learn more and more of its teachings under the leadership of Pastor Charles T. Russell, of the Brooklyn Tabernacle, a preacher and Bible teacher of world-wide reputation. The people of Chautauqua county are somewhat familiar with Pastor Russell and his teachings by reason of the Sunday School lessons which have been prepared by him and published in The Journal for a long time. But until the coming together of this great number of his followers from the very ends of the earth Chautauquans had little idea of the magnitude of the movement of which Pastor Russell is the recognized head."
Tuesday Sessions, August 2, 1910
THE Tuesday morning session was one of the most important of the convention and the auditorium was very well filled, both main floor and gallery. Brother E. W. Brenneisen, of Brooklyn, delivered an excellent discourse on "Baptism and Its Import." This was followed by a symbolic immersion in Chautauqua lake, near the toboggan slides, in which 242 men and women participated. Old men and women were immersed along with young people, the ceremonies taking place in the shallow water, and being witnessed by hundreds of persons along the water front and in boats.
The morning session of the convention opened with the singing of a hymn, "Love Divine, All Love Excelling."
Mayville Reception, Peacock Inn Tuesday Evening of Chautauqua Convention
TUESDAY evening the third installment from the Bible Students' Convention, numbering nearly 600, visited Pastor Russell and were addressed by him on the lawns and verandas of Peacock Inn. The twenty miles' ride on beautiful Lake Chautauqua feasted their eyes. Their hymns of praise wafted to the cottages on the shores led many to surname these International Bible students--The Happy People. Pastor Russell spoke briefly and informally. Referring to the beautiful scenery of the lake, he remarked:
"The view turned my mind back to the Garden of Eden, reminding me of the divine provision of our first parents before sin came to mar the divine likeness in which Adam and Eve were created. Then my mind went forward into the future, guided by the divine lamp--the Word of God. In its light there arose before my mental vision Paradise restored--not a garden merely, but the entire earth made beautiful, gorgeous, fruitful, sinless, happy.
"I called to mind the inspired promise so familiar to us all: 'There shall be no more sighing, no more crying, no more dying;' for the former things of sin and death will have passed away, and the great King of Glory shall announce, 'Behold, I renew all things.' (Rev. 21:5.) I recalled also St. Peter's words of assurance respecting those glorious 'times of restitution of all things which God hath spoken by the mouth of all the holy prophets since the world began.' (Acts 3:20-21.) St. Peter adds that this restitution of earth to its designed perfection typed in Eden, and of man to God's likeness, delays until the second advent of the Redeemer. And other Scriptures, dear brethren, assure us that the coming of our Master as the King of Glory is timed by God to take place as soon as the elect church shall have been called and chosen and tested and found faithful.
RESTITUTION WORK BEGUN.
"The divine purpose will not be thwarted by the permission of sin to mar the original. The sacrificial death of Jesus is the complete offset to the penalty pronounced on Adam and his race. Restitution to perfection and divine favor will result in God's 'due time.' And we believe that time near at hand.
"Do we not see the promised blessings coming? What are our vast irrigation schemes by artesian wells and by aqueducts but fulfillments of the prophecies pertaining to the reign of Messiah and the blessing of the earth? Hark to the message: 'Streams shall break forth in the desert, and the wilderness shall blossom as the rose.'--Isaiah 35.
"Burbank and others are under divine guidance working miracles in horticulture, just as Edison and others have been the instruments of Providence to give us electrical devices. What beautiful fruits and flowers are the result! It is difficult to imagine greater perfection either in Eden of old or in the world-wide Eden to be restored.
DELIVERING THE CAPTIVES.
"But, my friends, the most important piece of restitution work relates to man. The hard, stony selfishness of heart which is worldwide is not God's likeness nor to God's glory."'Man's inhumanity to men
Makes countless thousands mourn.'
"Nineteen centuries of preaching shows that the cure of this malady is not in our power, and that only the few even desire or seek for the Lord's spirit of gentleness and tender-heartedness. The great King of Glory is also the Good Physician. He only can cure the disease of sin and its results. Through him God's promise to Israel will be fulfilled."
After some light refreshments the "happy people" departed on the boat for the lodgings along the lake and at Jamestown, singing en route.
Mayville Reception, Peacock Inn Wednesday Evening of Chautauqua Convention
THE Peacock Inn and its spacious lawns at Mayville, with Pastor Russell of the Brooklyn Tabernacle as host, entertained the fourth contingent of Bible students, about 600 strong, Wednesday evening. The numbers each night are regulated by cards of invitation. Like its predecessor the occasion was an enjoyable one long to be remembered with pleasure and profit. Again the songs of "the happy people" of the International Bible students, coming and going, gladdened and cheered the dwellers at the lakeside homes, who will not soon forget this convention.
In connection with his greetings Pastor Russell said:
"To the gathering of Bible students who visited me here last evening I remarked the increasing beauties of nature as foregleams of the great 'restitution' promised in the Bible (Acts 3:20), and which we believe is now nigh at hand. We then considered the world's hope, based on the great sacrifice at Calvary and the Bible's testimony respecting its far reaching results. Tonight let us consider briefly the future of the church's hope.
"Like many of our Christian friends, for a long time we did not understand how to 'rightly divide the word of truth' (2 Tim. 2:15); we did not comprehend that God's plan provides first a heavenly salvation for the church and then an earthly salvation for manhood in general. The study of our Bibles along dispensational lines clears away all of our difficulties. It shows us that the promise that the redeemed 'shall sit every man under his own vine and fig tree and long enjoy the work of their hands' is God's provision for Israel restored to divine favor, and for all the families of the earth; but not for the church. Of the true church, the Bride of Christ, it is declared that her members shall in the resurrection be 'like unto the angels'-- heavenly or spiritual beings.
"St. Paul distinctly says of these: 'Flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God.' (1 Cor. 15:50.) Jesus tells these that he has gone to prepare them a place in the Father's house on high. But the place for man, the earth, already provided from the foundation of the world, is a very different one from ours, of which we read, 'Eye hath not seen nor ear heard, neither hath entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath in reservation for them that love him.'
THE SPIRITUAL CALL.
"Now we understand why it is that from Genesis to Malachi there is not one suggestion of a heavenly or spiritual hope for anyone. Every promise is earthly. In Abraham's case, for instance, we read, 'Lift up, now, thine eyes and look to the east, west, north and south, for all the land which thou seest to thee will I give it, and to thy seed after thee.'
"St. Paul refers to this difference between the hopes of the spirit begotten church founded at Pentecost and the hopes of all others. Pointing to the faithful of the past [CR117] he declares that although they had God's testimony to their faithfulness, nevertheless they received not the promises, 'God having provided some better thing for us, that they without us should not be made perfect.' (Hebrews 11:38-40.)
"As soon as we get our better thing, our higher reward of 'glory, honor and immortality,' in joint heirship with our Lord as figuratively his bride, then the worthy ones of ancient times will get their reward of resurrection to human perfection. Then under Messiah's kingdom those perfect men will be the 'princes in all the earth.' (Psalms 45:16.) Then from the spiritual to the perfected earthly ones, the blessings and instructions for the world will descend to the poor, ignorant, selfish and superstitious world--to help them; to uplift the obedient to the perfections illustrated by the perfected worthies.
WHAT HEAVEN IS LIKE.
"We have all heard of the Sunday school teacher who told her class about heaven--about its pianos, harps, organs, horses and carriages, fruits and flowers, etc. We see that she was merely thinking of the blessings God has provided for the faithful and obedient of the world, 'in due time.' She had no conception of the heaven of heavens promised to the faithful followers of Jesus in the narrow way.
"The Great Teacher explains that it is impossible to describe heaven and its beauties and charms. He said to Nicodemus: 'If I have told you of earthly things and ye believed not, how would you believe if I should tell you of heavenly things?' (Jno. 3:12.)
"In line with this the Bible makes no attempt to describe heaven itself, nor its inhabitants. Merely we are told that God is a Spirit 'dwelling in light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can ever see,' personally. Man must discern God in his works--the noblest of which is the perfect man--made in his moral likeness on the earthly plane--a little lower than the angels on the spirit plane. The most that the Word declares of our heavenly inheritance is that eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither hath entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath in reservation for them that love him.' (1 Cor. 11:9.)
"But while refusing to inform us of the heavenly conditions God does give us a soul-satisfying portion. Through the Apostle he declares 'it doth not yet appear what we shall be, but we know that when he (the glorified Jesus) shall be revealed (at his second advent, in power and great glory) we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is,' while others not thus 'changed' from human to spirit nature, by the first resurrection power, will not see him as he is, but only as he shall be revealed in his providence and judgments, which every eye shall recognize.
"How satisfactory--beyond all that we could have asked or thought. 'Like him'--what more could we ask--'like him' whom God hath highly exalted, far 'above angels, principalities and powers.' We stand amazed at such grace. Moreover, we can realize that he who called us to become 'partakers of the divine nature' and joint heirs with the Redeemer in his mediatorial kingdom has provided for our every comfort and joy in that heavenly state, the details of which we may not now grasp. Prophetically of these it is written: 'I shall be satisfied when I awake in thy likeness.'" (Psalms 17:15.)
Pastor Russell Interviewed by the Journal Christian Pulpits Held by Infidels. Inconsistent to Give Money to Universities and Seminaries which Teach Evolution
IN an interview with a representative of the Journal, Pastor Charles T. Russell declared that many evolutionists fraudulently hold Christian pulpits and that they are thus sailing under false colors. Pastor Russell gave utterance to this expression of sentiment when he was told that many wealthy and respected citizens of this country contribute liberally to foreign missions and thus indicate their consistency and sincerity in their efforts to promote the Christian faith. Among other things he said:
"You state that some of our wealthy citizens occupy a ridiculous position in that they contribute millions to the support of foreign missionary societies to send Bibles and missionaries to the heathen to convert them to Christianity, and that at the same time they contribute other millions to college which openly teach evolution and repudiate the Bible. Is this a fair statement of your contention?" Pastor Russell was asked.