Studies in the Scriptures
Zion's Watch Tower
VOL. XIX. NOVEMBER 7, 1898. EXTRA.
Views from the Watch Tower........................ 3
The Czar's Peace Proposal..................... 3
The Second Zionist Congress................... 4
The Parousia of our Lord Jesus and
His Subsequent Apokalupsis and
Epiphania at His Second Advent.............. 6
For What are We Watching?..................... 7
Proofs of His Presence........................ 12
"Behold the Bridegroom!"...................... 16
Presence Gradually Revealed................... 16
"Cometh not with Observation"................. 19
"Knew not the Time of Visitation"............. 20
Letters from Earnest Colaborers................... 24
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WHAT SAY THE SCRIPTURES ABOUT HELL?
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WHAT SAY THE SCRIPTURES ABOUT SPIRITUALISM?
--ALSO-- WHO ARE THE SPIRITS IN PRISON? AND WHY ARE THEY THERE?
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LETTERS FROM EARNEST COLABORERS.
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:--I want to quote an extract from a letter received from a dear Brother who for many years has been a minister in the Presbyterian Church. I think the letter will be interesting also to WATCH TOWER readers. It serves to show that some are on the side of truth at heart from whom you and we all very rarely hear pointedly of their deep interest in the divine plan of the ages. The extract from the letter follows:
"I have not tried lately to get any articles into the 'Observer.' The last one sent was on 'The justice, love and power of God'--showing his dealings with this world in the past, and the hope we have for the future. In returning the article the explanation given was that it was not quite what they wanted. The truth is that religious newspapers do not want to let their readers see the truth now due--they do not see it themselves. It is a sad condition to hear them cry out, 'Peace! Peace!' when there is no peace.
"I have had MILLENNIAL DAWN, VOL. IV., for the last ten days and am reading it through with carefulness. What a strong presentation Brother Russell makes of present conditions; and how clearly he shows these conditions portrayed in God's Word. But only a few will receive the truth, and only a few will read the book--compared to the vast multitude who spend days over trashy and worthless books. I thank God that this truth was brought to my notice, and that I was led to give it prayerful consideration.
"The other day, sitting in my study, surrounded by my books--about a thousand,--this thought came to my mind:-- What book, except the Bible, do you value most? I answered to myself, I value MILLENNIAL DAWN more than all the rest: and would rather part with every one of them than with this set: for from these books I have gotten more Bible truth and help in understanding than from all the rest put together.
"Truly, we are living in a wonderful age, and may God help and strengthen us to stand the test of this day. Many will not stand, and only those can stand who trust in the blood that was shed on Calvary for a lost world. I often wonder at the carelessness and indifference of God's preachers, when they profess to believe that so many are being eternally lost without a ray of hope: and yet, believing thus, they seek to get all the ease and comfort they possibly can for themselves, and to lay up as much of this world's goods as possible. Blessed be God, his grace and favor will yet be revealed to all mankind, and the whole world will see and be privileged to rejoice."
I am still seeking to serve the truth as I find opportunity, and regret that I cannot be regularly and constantly in the colporteur work. Pray for me that the Lord will more and more open up before me the door of opportunity to serve him, his people and his truth. Your brother and servant in the Lord,
J. M. DAVIDSON,--
Bells Valley, Va.
MY DEAR BROTHER:--Altho we have never met each other face to face, yet somehow I feel attached to you. Seven years ago when I for the first time began to read the DAWN, VOL. I., my pastor rebuked me for doing so and told me that I should first leave "my teens" before I attempted to read heresy. That man (Wm. Roeber, pastor of the 67th street German Baptist Church of New York City) committed suicide a year ago. How sad! Men judge by outward appearances. God sees the hearts. I took his advice but only to my disadvantage. Altho I have been a pre-millennialist for years and fought post-millennialism during my Theological course at the Rochester Seminary, yet the doctrine of Christ's second coming has become more precious to me since I have read your books. Thanks be to God for such a clear unfolding of his precious Word. We want more of it. Within us there is an unquenchable yearning to see God in his beauty, in his love, and it makes us sad when modern theologians misrepresent God's plan of the ages by confounding the doctrines of the Bible respecting the "present evil world" and "the world to come." The DAWNS have found much opposition here, but notwithstanding that, I have been trying to be faithful to my Master in preaching Christ's pre-millennial coming. Last Sunday evening I explained from the chart the Plan of the Ages as given in DAWN. Tomorrow evening (D.V.) I shall preach on "Are we living in the end of the world?" (the present evil world).
Last Sunday morning I tendered my resignation as pastor of the Church. Brother, I am disgusted with the hireling ministry. We are God's servants and should therefore depend on him for the sustenance of our lives.
Yours in Christ, J. A. KIEFERLE,--
WATCH TOWER BIBLE AND TRACT SOCIETY,
DEAR FRIENDS:--Inclosed please find one dollar for my subscription. I saw a note in a dictionary this morning that reminds me of Daniel's prophecy as you explain it in DAWN, VOL. III. It reads, "All attempts to read hieroglyphics had for centuries been given up when in August, 1799, the French found among the ruins of Ft. St. Julien near the Rosetta Branch of the Nile a stone which has since been called the Rosetta Stone." It tells of an inscription upon the stone, "first in hieroglyphics, next in the hieratic character of Egypt and in Greek, which afforded a key to the hieroglyphics, but one very difficult to apply" and how several "made advances toward solving the enigma [of hieroglyphics] so that Dr. Birch and other Egyptologists are now continually translating hieroglyphics from the monuments."
[The point is that 1799 was the very year beginning "the time of the End" when many would run to and fro and knowledge be increased."--DAWN, VOL. III., Chapter II.--EDITOR.]
Sincerely Yours, WM. BRADLEY,--
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:--Your good letter of the 15th inst. came duly to hand and is highly appreciated by Sister Owen and myself. We are glad to know that you were surprised at the goodly number of the dear friends in the truth who met you at our home on the occasion of your recent flying visit. We are glad, too, that you were so favorably impressed by their appearance and conduct. We do not feel that we have done much, but as you suggest we are glad the dear Lord has permitted us to minister to his flock here; and that in a small degree at least we have been instruments in his hands in bringing about the happy condition which you noted. To him alone be all the praise!
I cannot tell you how precious to all our hearts was that one hour's meeting with you at our house; and I am sure that it will prove profitable to all. I know that it has already been of great benefit to one very dear brother, who for some time has been lukewarm, but now seems full of love and zeal again. I must tell you about our meeting last Sunday. I had announced the week before that I would speak on the subject of baptism, by request. My work the last three days of the week had been very heavy, and when Sunday morning came I was so tired that I could scarcely stand or think; and but for the fact that I had made a special announcement of my subject, and several had come who did not fully understand our position. I would not have attempted to lead the meeting at all. But looking to the Lord for strength, I was not disappointed. He wonderfully sustained me, while I spoke for an hour and a quarter; and Oh! what a precious season we had, every one in the house being sensibly moved by the Lord's blessed holy presence.
I am glad to tell you that my temporal affairs are brightening of late. Almost providentially I have gotten into a business which, besides meeting my expenses, is gradually putting me into a position where I shall soon be able to contribute more to the Tract Fund than I have been able to do for several years. It may be that there are others who, like myself, are unable to engage in the noble and effective work of colporteuring the DAWNS and are not profitably engaged, and who are able and willing to do a moderate day's work. As I have all the business I can attend to in this city, I could operate the business through brethren (and sisters too) in other places, and will pledge 10 per cent. of all such
to the Tract Fund, which amount may be increased hereafter, if the business prospers.
Unable to give much time to the service of the truth, I consider this my best opportunity aside from my humble ministry to the Lord's people in this city, and occasional trips to the surrounding towns. Mention this matter as you may think proper to any out of employment. Yours in our dear Redeemer,
C. A. OWEN,--
623 W. Michigan St., Indianapolis, Ind.
DEAR BROTHER:--I am thankful for the interest you take in my welfare and for your prayers on my behalf. I am an old man, in my 90th year, and I cannot expect to be of much use; but Oh! how gladly I would proclaim the good news, if the infirmities of age did not prevent. Both of my parents were Methodists, and I gave my heart to God and joined the Methodists in my 13th year, and my name has been enrolled in their books (a good deal of the time as an official member) until last conference held in Guelph, when I withdrew.
I loved God's Word and tried hard to understand it, but there were very many passages that I never understood until I was providentially led to read MILLENNIAL DAWN and other WATCH TOWER publications: then I saw that the blasphemous doctrine of the eternal torture of the finally impenitent had so obscured the light as to hide many of the glorious features of God's plan from view.
I rejoice in the promised restitution of all things; and that Christ will be King over all the earth in that day; and that the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God. In short I am a firm believer in that glorious plan of the ages so Scripturally, clearly and logically unfolded in the volumes of MILLENNIAL DAWN. Yours in Christ, HENRY HALL,--