ZWT - 1913 - R5152 thru R5372 / R5227 (129) - May 1, 1913
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VOL. XXXIV MAY 1 No. 9
A. D. 1913--A. M. 6041
Evidences of the Anointing of the Holy
Distinction Between Anointing and
The Anointing Not the Mind of Christ..........132
Dwelling Together in Unity........................133
Friction the Result of Selfishness............133
"No Schism in the Body".......................134
Anointing the "Feet" of Christ....................134
Antitypical Perfume on Antitypical Feet.......135
A Disciple's Prayer (Poem)........................135
Benjamin's Portion Five-Fold......................136
Two Tribulation Classes.......................137
Lessons Learned by Joseph's Brethren..............138
When Will Men Profit?.........................139
Mercy Is Better Than Sacrifice....................140
"Fall Not Out By The Way".....................141
Some Interesting Letters..........................142
Requests for Pilgrim Visits.......................143
Berean Questions in Scripture Studies.............143
WATCH TOWER BIBLE AND TRACT SOCIETY
CHARLES T. RUSSELL, PRESIDENT
"BROOKLYN TABERNACLE," 13-17 HICKS ST.,
BROOKLYN, N.Y., U.S.A.
Foreign Agencies:--British Branch: LONDON TABERNACLE, Lancaster Gate, London, W. German Branch: Unterdorner Str., 76, Barmen. Australasian Branch: Flinders Building, Flinders St., Melbourne. Please address the SOCIETY in every case.
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A WORD TO CONVENTIONERS
You will assist us, and therefore advantage all concerned by advising us in advance where you intend going; and for what days; and how many are to constitute your party; and color and sex. Address at each Convention city, three weeks in advance, Laymen's Home Missionary Movement.
It will further advantage all if we have the engagement of all rooms. Then you will not be going in at the eleventh hour and taking, at higher prices, rooms we had already secured for others, and causing trouble when you wish to bless.
RE HOT SPRINGS, ARK.
Hot Springs is in the mountains of Arkansas and therefore will not be so hot as its name might imply. The surroundings are beautiful and attractive. It is under U.S. Government control, and sanitary to the highest degree. It has few sick visitors in summer. We are expecting that the attendance there from Texas and the South will be considerable.
OMISSION AND ADDITIONS
Cross off the list Mt. Lake Park, Md.
The International Bible Students Association Classes of Los Angeles and San Francisco are arranging for Conventions to be held in connection with Brother Russell's visits to their Cities. Los Angeles proposes five days of Bible study, June 11 to 15; San Francisco proposes three days, June 14, 15, 16. Such of our readers as desire to attend those Conventions are requested to write for particulars --railway excursion rates, etc. State what railway routing you prefer, going and returning. Address Laymen's Home Missionary Movement, Box 325, San Francisco, Cal., or 405 So. Hill St., Room 316, Los Angeles, Cal. The Brethren will arrange for special parties and for entertainment, etc. Our readers on the Pacific Coast proposing to attend the later Conventions in the East may also receive helpful information respecting routes, rates, etc. Surely avail yourselves of these Christian hospitalities.
Dr. L. W. Jones, of 3003 Walnut Street, Chicago, Ill., learning of Brother Russell's arrangements for the Convention Tour to the Pacific, has made up a Convention Party to accompany him, or rather asked him if they may have the pleasure of his company on their special train. He has very thankfully accepted the kind hospitalities. Parties wishing to join the Excursion Train enroute can address the Doctor direct, or, if they prefer, communicate through the Laymen's Home Missionary Movement of the Pacific Coast at addresses above.
SUBSCRIPTIONS FOR SERMON NEWSPAPERS
We are glad to know that our readers subscribe for the journals which publish Brother Russell's sermons weekly. We are specially glad when they encourage and support the paper published nearest to their post-office. We are still more pleased when these subscriptions pass through our hands. This may be done by those who make up clubs--everyway.
Our readers must not think that newspapers which send them letters requesting them to act as agents are prompted by us. Whatever we have to say to you on the subject of subscription will be said either through the WATCH TOWER columns or through the Pilgrims, or directly by letter.
Letters coming to you through newspapers are merely circulars and need no reply.
* * *
Whenever and wherever our readers see in newspapers anything from the pen of Brother Russell, there and then they should recognize an Editor to be encouraged and a paper to be assisted.
BETHEL HYMNS FOR JUNE
After the close of the hymn the Bethel Family listens to the reading of "My Vow Unto the Lord," then joins in prayer. At the breakfast table the MANNA text is considered. Hymns for June follow: (1) 305; (2) 1; (3) 105; (4) 114; (5) 43; (6) 145; (7) 230; (8) 7; (9) Vow; (10) 321; (11) 293; (12) 95; (13) 238; (14) 50; (15) 320; (16) 325; (17) 145; (18) 27; (19) 15; (20) 259; (21) 198; (22) 222; (23) 226; (24) 333; (25) 4; (26) 246; (27) 313; (28) 165; (29) 160; (30) 130.
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EVIDENCES OF THE ANOINTING OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
"Christ in you, the hope
of glory."--`Colossians 1:27`.
THE SCRIPTURES frequently speak of the Church as being "in Christ," giving the thought of membership in His Body. (`Romans 12:4,5`; `I Corinthians 12:12-27`; `2 Corinthians 5:17`.) Our Lord Himself used the figure of a vine and its branches to convey the same thought. He spoke of Himself as the Vine, and of the Church as the branches in the Vine, partaking of nourishment therefrom. (`John 15:1,2`.) It is not this thought, however, that is expressed by the Apostle's words, "Christ in you, the hope of glory."
The word Christ signifies anointed. All who will be members of the Royal Priesthood will be anointed--not separately, but collectively. This was pictured during the Jewish Age by the installation into office of both the kings and the high priests of Israel. According to the Law, every king and every high priest must be anointed, else he could not serve. The oil which was used in this ceremony was of a peculiar kind, which might not be used for any other purpose.--`Exodus 30:22,23`.
The anointing which our Lord and the members of His mystical Body have received is different from anything else in the whole world. It is the anointing of the Holy Spirit, which is variously spoken of as the spirit of holiness, the spirit of a sound mind, the spirit of the Truth, and the Spirit of God. It is not the Truth, but the spirit of the Truth, it is not the Word of God, although it is in harmony with the Word; it is not holiness, yet it is in full accord with holiness. It is the spirit, the disposition, which is associated with a sound mind, with holiness, with Truth and with the Word of God.
As the anointing of kings and priests in Israel was the Divine evidence that they were accepted to office, so was it with our Lord Jesus. St. Peter tells us that "God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power." (`Acts 10:38`.) Our Lord was set apart for a very high office. In harmony with the Divine arrangement, He is to be the great antitypical King and Priest-- "after the order of Melchizedek."
During the Gospel Age, God has been setting apart those who are to be members of the Body of Christ. These are invited to be kings and priests unto our God--a Royal Priesthood. Consequently, when one is received into this Body, under the Headship of Christ, he comes under the anointing of the Holy Spirit. This unction is from the
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Father in that He alone can give the recognition. It is from the Son in that we can come to the Father only through Him.
This is well illustrated by the consecration of the Jewish high priest. The holy oil was poured upon Aaron's head, typifying the anointing of our Lord at the time of His consecration. The oil then ran down to the very skirts of Aaron's garments, thus typifying the anointing of the Body of Christ, which is the Church. This descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Church was manifested at Pentecost.
DISTINCTION BETWEEN ANOINTING AND BEGETTING
The anointing of the Holy Spirit is slightly different from the begetting of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit which came upon Jesus at Jordan was both the begetting and the anointing power of God. Our Lord was The Anointed from the moment at which He was begotten.
So with the Church at Pentecost. They were waiting for acceptance of God. Our Lord had appeared in the presence of God as their Advocate, in order that their sacrifices might be acceptable. When the Father recognized their acceptance by shedding forth the Holy Spirit --when there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and "sat upon each one of them" (`Acts 2:3`, R.V.) --that recognition was both their begetting and their anointing. The former--the begetting--represents the matter from the individual standpoint, and the latter-- the anointing--from the collective. We are begotten individually, but we were anointed collectively.
If we should consider the anointing and the begetting as two different steps of progress, we should be obliged to say that the begetting takes place first, and that the begotten one is anointed, or recognized as an heir of God. But this giving the one a priority over the other is not necessary to the thought. These seem to be two pictures, which represent the matter from two different standpoints. We are not individually anointed, nor are we collectively begotten.
This Spirit which we receive from God abides in us. Whoever loses the Spirit loses the light, and passes into the death condition. So the Apostle urges, "Grieve not the Spirit." If we cease to be in the Body of Christ, we cease to be anointed. If we lose the spirit of our begetting, we shall die. The begetting represents the beginning of our experience, and the resurrection the completion. Each is individually begotten and born of the Spirit.
In the picture of anointing the whole Body is anointed. There will be no need for a repetition of the
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ceremony. At the beginning of the Gospel Age, the one Body was anointed, and all who will be members of that Body come under that one anointing, and all these will share in His resurrection--the First Resurrection--the Chief Resurrection.
THE ANOINTING NOT THE MIND OF CHRIST
Not only was our Lord begotten to the new nature, anointed of the Holy Spirit, but each member of the Body must be similarly begotten, for "flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of God." If we have received this anointing, we are eligible to all that God has promised to The Christ--primarily to the Head, and also to the members of His Body. As God foreknew the great Shepherd of the sheep, the Redeemer, He also foreknew this class.
Long before our Lord came into the world, the Father had planned that there should be an Anointed Company, the Head of which should be our Lord, and the Body of which should be the Church. (`Ephesians 1:3,4,22,23`.) Jesus was to have the first place in the Christ Company, and associated with Him would be those who would have His Spirit, His will, who had made a full consecration of their lives to do God's will faithfully, even unto death.
For those who have this spirit of consecration, and have presented themselves in sacrifice, our Lord stands as the Advocate before the Father, to make good for them, to cover their blemishes and imperfections. Our Lord's work is not that of anointing, but of making it possible for us to be received by the Father. The anointing is of the Father, but by the Son. St. Peter says that Jesus, having received the Spirit of the Father, shed it forth.--`Acts 2:33`.
As long as we have this Spirit of God, it is an evidence to us that we are children of God. So long as we possess it, we maintain this relationship of sons. (`Romans 8:9,14`.) Then the consequent thought is that if we are children of God we are "heirs of God and joint-heirs with Jesus Christ," "to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that fadeth not away, reserved in Heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation, ready to be revealed in the last time."--`Romans 8:17`; `I Peter 1:5`.
The words of our text suggest the thought that whoever has the Spirit of God has the evidence that he is an heir of glory and will receive the reward, if found faithful. On one occasion the Apostle John said, "But the anointing which ye have received of Him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you." (`I John 2:27`.) Those who have this anointing have no need that any one teach them that fact, for they have the evidence of it, the proof of it in their own hearts and experiences. These evidences are more apparent to themselves than to any one else.
The evidences that one has been anointed may not be understood except as we have the instructions of the Word of God. The Scriptures give us an outline of the witness to the possession of the Holy Spirit, so as to leave no room for doubt. They tell us that the Holy Spirit, the begetting power in us, leads us more and more to have the mind of Christ. We were not anointed with the mind of Christ, but with the Holy Spirit, and whoever has the Holy Spirit will find that he will develop the mind of Christ.
CHARACTERISTICS OF THE MIND OF CHRIST
The mind of Christ is the will to do the Father's will. Our Lord, when a child, said on one occasion to His mother, "How is it that ye sought Me? wist ye not that I must be about My Father's business?" (`Luke 2:49`.) We recognize that we have a Heavenly Father, whose service is the highest possible service. Those who are His must have this spirit. The work of the New Creature must be the Heavenly work, otherwise he will have no proof that he has passed from the condemnation upon the human race and become a New Creature.
If we have the spirit of loyalty to God, to the Truth and to the brethren, we have the mind, the disposition of Christ. We also have indeed the weaknesses of the flesh, but it is our privilege to fight against these and to become more and more transformed in the spirit of our minds, to have our minds more centered in the Truth and in the service of the brethren.
If there is a decrease of zeal in this direction, then we may know that there is danger of going backward instead of forward. We hear of instances where the Lord's people have lost their first love and have become more or less cold. From our standpoint we may know when any have lost their first love. It is when they have allowed their minds to be led away to earthly things-- love of family, of home, of worldly possessions, etc., all of which war against the Heavenly things. We should seek our pleasures, not from earthly sources, but from the Heavenly source. Very frequently we find Christians who tell us that they had a blessed experience when first they knew the Lord, but that they do not now feel as near to Him as formerly. If we probe the matter, we nearly always find that they went into business, or married, or did something which has warred against the Holy Spirit. We are not speaking against those things, but "If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them"--the things that make for our peace.
OTHER EVIDENCES OF THE ANOINTING
In addition to having the mind of Christ, we have other evidences that we have been anointed. We find ourselves needing the spiritual food, and to satisfy our hunger, our Heavenly Father has provided us the knowledge of the Divine Plan, the knowledge of our Lord. Each new view gives us fresh inspiration. Then if we find some of the brethren spiritually hungry, how can we withhold from giving them the spiritual refreshment which we have? If one has earthly mercies and dispenses them, God may give him the privilege of opening blind eyes. If it is a blessing to open physically blinded eyes, how much greater a blessing is it to open the spiritually blinded eyes! We have the blessed privilege of helping some to get their eyes open to see spiritual things, and also of helping others who already see to understand more clearly.
If we love the Truth, we will serve the Truth. This service is sure to bring upon us the disapproval of the world, it will not bring us an earthly passport. The world will say that we are doing it for money or some selfish object, for they are sure to err, sure to fail to see the real purpose of the truly consecrated people of God. If we endure these things, we thereby prove ourselves to be good soldiers of Jesus Christ.
If devotion to the will of the Father brought upon our Lord shame, ignominy, we must not wonder that we are treated likewise. If the world called the Master of the House of Sons Beelzebub, they will assuredly call His followers some evil name. The willingness to receive all this as a part of our reasonable service is a further evidence that we have been anointed.
Probably the Lord's people find that they can very easily love some of the brethren, but that there are some others whom it is not so easy to love, for they do not
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seem to be lovable. However, we should reflect that if the Lord can receive and love these brethren, we should do the same, and that our love should help them out of their naturally mean traits of disposition. Thus we shall develop love for all of the brethren--the rich and the poor, the educated and the uneducated--and desire to render them assistance as opportunity may offer.
The evidences that one has been anointed with the Holy Spirit are, increasing desire for spiritual things, desire to assist others to see and to grow in knowledge and Heavenly grace, persecution from the worldly-minded, and the development of the mind of Christ--the disposition which is loving, generous, forgiving toward others and which is reverential toward God and obedient to His will. Whoever finds, on self-examination, that he has these evidences in his own heart has the witness of the Spirit that he is a child of God.
THE HOPE OF GLORY
The word "glory" carries with it the thought of honor and dignity--sometimes also that of brightness, shining. The Scriptures speak of the Heavenly Father as having the excellent glory, that glory unto which none others can approach. Our Lord Jesus is said to have been received up into glory--honor and distinction. Of Adam it is said that he was "crowned with glory and honor," was put over the beasts of the field, the fowl of the air and the fish of the sea. (`Psalm 8:5-8`; `Genesis 1:28`.) In this connection the word "glory" seems to indicate that Adam was made in the image of his Creator.
Applying these same thoughts to ourselves, we find that as yet we have no glory. What blessing we have received is the possession of the Holy Spirit, the evidence of our adoption into the family of God. This, however, is merely the beginning of the glory which God has promised to those who are faithful--merely the earnest. To have the Holy Spirit in us is to have the anointing in us. If we allow the Holy Spirit to operate in us, and ourselves faithfully co-operate therewith, the end will be glorious.
Thus the anointing which we have received--the Spirit of Christ in us--is the hope or basis of the glory which we are expecting--a glory which is to be like that of our Redeemer--a glory which is above that of angels, principalities and powers--a glory which is next to that of the Lord. This anointing, this Spirit of Christ within us, is the earnest, or hope, or basis, of all that is coming. Hence we should heed the admonition of the Apostle that we quench not the anointing, this Holy Spirit of Christ. On the contrary, we are to cultivate it, develop it, give attention to it. If we should allow it to die, because of neglect of the help which God has supplied, if we should quench it by indulgence in sin, we should thereby demonstrate that we are unworthy of the blessing and fit only for the Second Death.
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DWELLING TOGETHER IN UNITY
"Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!"--`Psalm 133:1`.
IN SOME earthly families there is a considerable degree of unity. Of such we sometimes say, "This family all seem to pull together." In other families there seems to be a pulling apart. When we see husband and wife, brothers and sisters, seeking to help one another, we say, "There is a great deal of love in that family." By this we mean an earthly love--a certain amount of animal love. This disposition is a right one. The Bible seems to imply that there is an obligation, a special duty, to those who are near to us. The Scriptures say that a man should not neglect his own household. He that careth not for his own is worse than an unbeliever. --`I Timothy 5:8`.
Man was originally created in the image of God, and had love Divine as the inspiring influence in his life. This love has been largely effaced by selfishness, which is the representative of sin. In proportion as people are fallen, to that extent they are selfish. Some are kind and generous to the members of their own family, and seek to co-operate in helping one another. We cannot say that this is not a right principle, if, in seeking to do for its own, it does not injure others. Brothers and sisters should sympathize with one another, and have a spirit of helpfulness one toward another. Wherever we see this spirit in a family we say, "That is a delightful family."
There are other families where there seems to be a personal selfishness, and no brotherly sympathy at all. In such families there is a desire to do more for an outsider than for one of their own. The members see more blemishes in their own than in others. In such cases, justice is lacking. Whenever the principle of justice is overridden, a spirit of antagonism is engendered instead of love, and under such conditions there is no unity possible.
FRICTION THE RESULT OF SELFISHNESS
Let us apply this rule to the Lord's family--the Church. God has organized a new family in the world-- not according to any earthly ties, but according to the Spirit of God. This family consists of those who have been begotten of the one Spirit of the Father. What a beautiful family it is! We see a type of this family in the days of Gideon. All the sons of Joash, Gideon's father, were different from the others of Israel in their general appearance. It is written that they resembled the children of kings. (`Judges 8:18`.) So should it be with us. As we have the Spirit of the Lord, we should shine out in our words and deeds, and in every way should "show forth the praises of Him who has called us out of darkness into His marvelous light."--`I Peter 2:9`.
Evidently the principle of selfishness is the root from which all disagreements emanate. Surely there is nothing of selfishness in the Lord's Spirit. Whence then is this spirit of strife and discord which sometimes manifests itself among the Lord's people? One sets himself up and seeks to take away the rights and liberties of others. Others, having a similar spirit, may desire to be clannish. One says, "I am of Paul"; another, "I am of Apollos," a third, "I am of Christ." This spirit is wrong. St. Paul points out that there is none other than Christ to whom we should be united.
The most favorable condition for unity is that all seek to have the Lord's will done in their mortal bodies. The only difficulty that could then arise would result from ignorance or from weakness of the flesh that had not been overcome or that could not be overcome. The other members of the congregation, having the Spirit of the Master, would assume that the erring brother was merely ignorant, and not wilfully in opposition. Therefore in all kindness and gentleness they would seek to point out the will of the Father as expressed in Christ. The younger brother would be glad to have this done, because he would have the Spirit of Christ.
If the difficulty were one of the flesh, the brethren
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should recognize that it was merely a weakness of the flesh, and sympathetically they should point out to the brother wherein he had come short. In turn, he should make apology for his mistake. Then he should be freely forgiven. So he would learn and would come into proper unity with the other brethren. Thus we are all, at the present time, to have the Spirit of the Master, and so far as possible to live together in unity.
"NO SCHISM IN THE BODY"
It is, however, not possible always to "dwell together in unity" with everybody. It would be impossible for God and Satan thus to dwell. There are some people who have the spirit of Satan. We could have no unity with such a one. There would be polishing from coming in contact with such, but there could be no unity; for what fellowship could light have with darkness? On one occasion St. Paul wrote to the Corinthian Church, "I hear that there are divisions among you." Then he proceeded to say that it must be so, in order that whatever was wrong might come to the surface, that the inharmony of the situation might be realized, and that the one in the wrong might be led to go out, because he was an intruder. (`I Corinthians 11:18,19`.) Recognizing his position, such a one would go out, saying by his action, "I am not a member of the Body of Christ; these are the Lord's people." Or, failing to go out, he should be advised to do so.
Those who are not brethren, who are not children of light, but children of darkness, associating with the brethren, must be dealt with along the lines of the Divine direction laid down in `Matthew 18:15-17`. We may not take any measures not Scriptural. This is the only method.
We have seen great machines running with great precision and very little commotion. The parts are dwelling together in unity; all are working in perfect order, because they are well put together. They could not fall together, or there would be merely a rattling. The family of God are like a great machine. The setting of the members in the Body is under the supervision of the great Engineer, who brings them into the spirit of harmony, through the impartation of His own Spirit.
The working of a new engine or other machine is very slow at first, because there is a certain amount of friction engendered when the parts begin to move. So when the engineer finds that there is friction in any of the parts, he puts on a little lubricating oil, and thus prevents injury. When the parts are worn smooth, there is little danger of friction. So with the members of the Body of Christ. When they are new in the Body we must expect some friction, and then we should exercise more of the Spirit of the Lord. And we should be very sure of our own spirit, of our own intention.
Even if the one causing friction should not be of the Body, even if he were a stranger--no part of the machine
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to which he is attaching himself--there would be all the more need of oil. We should, therefore, remember that no matter how well developed each member may be, he will need the Holy Spirit. If we find any member unendurable, we should go to the Lord in prayer and ask for more of His Spirit, that we may exercise more patience and more brotherly-kindness in dealing with that one. So shall we be pleasing to the Lord, and helpful in building one another up and in doing good unto all men, especially to the Household of Faith.
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ANOINTING "THE FEET" OF CHRIST
"She hath done what she could."--`Mark 14:8`.
WE CAN scarcely think of a higher encomium that could have come from the Master's lips to any of His followers. This expression of Jesus, then, should be of special comfort, particularly so to the sisters in the Church. They have not all the opportunities that the brethren have of service in the Truth. There are certain limitations of the sex, and these, of course, were upon Mary. She did not have the privilege of going about with Jesus to hear all of His teachings, and of co-operating with Him in that way, nor of being one of the seventy sent out to do mighty works, to proclaim the Kingdom.
But not discouraged by these limitations, Mary was very much on the alert to improve all the opportunities that she had. She and her family had been special friends of Jesus--for how long a time we do not know. But we know that He frequently went to their home; and the Scriptures testify that "Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus."--`John 11:5`.
When Lazarus fell sick, the sisters sent Him word, "He whom Thou lovest is sick." They manifested their faith and submission also as to what answer would come --as to whether He would simply send word, or bless a handkerchief, or what not. They felt that He would care for them--being a special friend of the family.
It must have been a great trial of their faith when our Lord remained away, when Lazarus died, when the funeral took place. On the fourth day after, Jesus came to Bethany--too late to do any good! We remember that then Mary, who had sat at Jesus' feet to be taught of Him, was so overcome because He had not sent some help in her brother's case, that she did not feel that she even wished to see the Lord. She did not feel like honoring Him. So when she heard that He had come, she sat still in the house, and did not go to greet Him. Of course, after Jesus had called forth Lazarus from the tomb, her faith and love and zeal were revived and intensified. Her faith had been sorely tried and tested, and had finally triumphed.
On this occasion, when Jesus came up to Jerusalem, prior to the crucifixion, He came to their home as usual. Then Lazarus and Martha and Mary made quite a feast, at which there were present some of the Pharisees from the city of Jerusalem. After this feast, Jesus rode upon the ass into Jerusalem, and was proclaimed King by a multitude of disciples. It looked as if things were getting very favorable, and as if very soon the people would receive Him as King.--`Luke 19:37-40`.
Some had previously wondered and some had persisted in faith. These thought that now was the moment of Jesus' glorification, and this, they felt sure, meant also their own glorification. When He came into Jerusalem, He drove out the money-changers from the Temple, and all things seemed auspicious. Later on, some of the scribes and Pharisees tried to show up the fallacy of His teachings, and they were all put to flight, so that they were afraid to ask him questions, because it did more harm than good.--`Luke 20:40`.
FAULT-FINDING ANTAGONISTIC TO LOVE
The common people were in favor of Jesus, but the leaders were much discontented. They said, "The Romans will treat us badly and not give us any liberty, if we allow
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this thing to go on. It will bring us all into disgrace." So the high priest said, "It is expedient for us that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation perish not." (`John 11:50`.) But this determination was to be kept quiet. The chief priest and rulers, therefore, worked secretly.
Just before the day of the crucifixion, Jesus was again in the home of Lazarus and Martha and Mary. It was on this occasion that Mary took the opportunity of breaking a box of ointment and pouring it over the head of Jesus. This ointment was not oil--such ointment as we use today--but very expensive perfume. The alabaster package in which this was put up was apparently a small vase.
Mary broke the vase--probably uncorked it--that she might pour out the ointment. In this way she manifested her high appreciation of His being a Guest at their home. To Mary our Lord was not simply a great man. To her He was more, He was the Messiah. So far as she understood, she adored Him, reverenced Him as her Lord; and she took this opportunity for showing her devotion by pouring upon Him the precious perfume.
One of the disciples, Judas, rebuked the woman, saying, "This is a shameful waste of money, this ointment was valuable." Such ointments were much more expensive at that time than now. By the synthetic process we can now manufacture almost any odor without using even one flower. But the process used in olden times made it much more costly.
As Judas was upbraiding Mary, Jesus stopped him, saying, "Let her alone; why trouble ye her? She hath wrought a good work on Me....She hath done what she could." She has manifested her love, her devotion. She has not followed Me as you disciples have done. She had the restrictions of her sex upon her. But this is one thing that she could do, and one thing that she did. I appreciate what she has done. She has anointed Me for My burial.--`Mark 14:6,8`.
THE MASTER'S TRIBUTE OF APPROVAL
We may suppose that these would seem very strange words for the Master to use--"She hath anointed My body aforehand for the burying." The disciples thought He would not die. But Jesus was so in the habit of saying peculiar things that if they stopped to quarrel over them, they would have been led away from Him. On one occasion He had said, "Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of Man, and drink His blood, ye have no life in you." (`John 6:53`.) This saying had perplexed them greatly. When He said He was about to be crucified, they thought, How can He use language which is so untruthful? And when St. Peter said, "Be it far from Thee, Lord! This shall not be unto Thee!" Jesus upbraided him.--`Matthew 16:22,23`.
These words, these things, came to their remembrance in future days; and thus their faith and hope and trust were much intensified and were made more precious. Thus also our faith has been strengthened.
Applying to ourselves Jesus' words to Mary, we can see that no one could have a higher tribute from the Master's lips than the approval given to Mary's act. Apparently it meant: She cannot do more--she has done all she could. There is encouragement in these words for all of us. However brethren may criticize us, if we are
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sure that our hearts have been loyal to the Lord, we may be sure that He will say of us sympathetically, "It is not any great thing that they can do, but they are doing what they can." As the Heavenly Father looks down upon us, He must see that we are doing very little. It is comforting, however, for us to know that the Heavenly Father is pleased to look down upon us, and that He sees that we are trying to do what we can.
This text should be of special encouragement to the sisters. They have special opportunities, in a more private manner, of ministering to the Body of Christ. Of course it does not mean that the brethren are not to minister to the Body of Christ--to wash one another's feet, etc.-- but it points specially to the privilege of the sisters--the anointing of the Head and the feet.
ANTITYPICAL PERFUME ON ANTITYPICAL FEET
We of today are in a very special sense the feet members. This expression is specially applicable to those who are living now--the last members of the Body of Christ, the Church. The expression, "anointing the feet," seems to call attention to the fact that any service done to any member of the Body of Christ will be esteemed a service to Him. He will say of all who thus serve Him that they have done what they could.
Mary's conduct in this case, and her deep humility, are in strange contrast with that of the Apostles on the next day. When they had assembled for the Passover Supper, they felt their own importance so much that they were not willing to be servants to each other. They were going to be kings on the Throne. Therefore they were not going to wash each other's feet; and not only so, but they were not going to wash the Master's feet. Then the Master washed their feet, and set them an example.
This is a special time for seeking to honor one another, to serve one another and to strengthen each other's hearts. The perfume itself is a beautiful picture of love and devotion, and illustrates the manner in which we can pour perfume on each other by speaking graciously to each other, and by seeking to see the best that there is in one another. "Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; and walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling savor."--`Ephesians 5:1,2`.
A DISCIPLE'S PRAYER
Loving Master, I am thine;
Joined with Thee I may resign
All I have that is of earth,
Yet I know it has no worth,
But in it I think and live,
And I have naught else to give.
Even this Thou didst give me
As a test that Thou mightst see
Whether I love these things more,
Counting up my little store
As of wealth that can compare
With the crown that I may wear
If I gladly give it all,
Letting my ambitions fall,
Toppling as the flames arise
Through my willing sacrifice.
Honored am I thus to be
Called to heirship, Lord, with Thee,
And my seeming pause was due
To the overwhelming view
Of Thy dazzling purity,
And my own depravity,
In contrasting the exchange
Of human life for spirit gains;
Holiness to replace sin,
Peace and joy where grief has been,
And if faithful in the strife
The reward, Immortal Life!
Trusting, humbly do I pray:
Keep me faithful day by day!
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BENJAMIN'S PORTION FIVE-FOLD
--MAY 25.--`GENESIS 43`.--
"He that loveth his brother abideth
in the light."--`I John 2:10`.
WHEN the wheat supply procured from Egypt began to run low, Jacob urged his sons to go again for more. But they positively refused to do so unless their younger brother, Benjamin, should go along. Then one of the brethren--Judah--became surety for Benjamin. Jacob finally consented, sending with them a present of honey, spices, etc., and double money, and Benjamin, saying, "And God Almighty give you mercy before the man [Joseph], that he may send away your other brother, Simeon, and Benjamin. If I be bereaved of my children, I am bereaved."
Again they were expected by Joseph, who this time gave instructions that a dinner should be served for them in his presence. They were in fear, however, especially because the money had been put into the mouths of their sacks at their former visit. They communed with Joseph's steward at the door of the house and got his answer--so different from what they would probably get today in Egypt, or anywhere else. He said, "Peace be to you, fear not: your God, and the God of your father, hath given you treasure in your sacks; I had your money. And he brought Simeon out unto them." Then he gave them water, wherewith to wash and refresh themselves, and provender for their asses, and made ready for the noon repast.
Then Joseph came in, robed as an Egyptian prince. They bowed themselves to the earth, and tendered him the present. Tenderly he inquired for their father, and then in respect to Benjamin, their younger brother. So deep was his emotion that he was obliged to retire for a time to shed tears of joy. Restraining himself, he returned, and the meal proceeded. From his own private table he caused portions to be sent to his eleven brethren, having already directed that they should be seated according to their age and birthright. This also astonished the brethren, and much more were they astonished when they perceived that the helping given to the youngest brother was five portions instead of one--a mark of special favor.
The story is very simple, very touching, very beautiful, both for children and for those of mature mind. The setting is so natural as to carry with it the conviction of truth, so guileless as to be fully in harmony with what might be expected in the Book of God.
THE SPIRITUAL LESSON TAUGHT
Bible Students, realizing that Joseph was a type of The Messiah, are of the opinion that Benjamin, Joseph's younger brother by the same mother, was also a type. As Abraham's wives were typical of different covenants, so Bible Students seem to see that Rachel, the mother of Joseph and Benjamin, typified a special covenant--the Covenant of Sacrifice, which has operated during this Gospel Age, and which brings forth two distinctly separate classes of saints. These two classes of saints seem to be typified by Joseph and Benjamin.
The highest class is represented in Joseph--The Messiah --the class that includes the specially faithful of God's people during this Gospel Age--Jesus and all of His footstep followers. This class, eventually, as typified by Joseph, will reach the Throne of empire, becoming the King or Ruler of the universe, next to the Almighty Creator, typified by Pharaoh, who took Joseph out of the prison-house of death and highly exalted him to be next to himself in power and great glory.
It has evidently escaped the attention of many Bible Students, until recently, that two classes of saintly Christians are being developed during this Gospel Age--a superior class, represented by Joseph, and an inferior class, represented by Benjamin. The word Benjamin signifies "son of my right hand." The name Benoni--"son of my pain"--was given to him by his mother, who died in giving him birth.
The antitypical lesson here would be that this special Covenant, typified by Rachel, gives birth to the elect Church, The Messiah, of which Jesus is the Head, and will also give birth to another class, and then cease-- expire--giving birth to no more. The secondary class are Scripturally designated as tribulation saints, the declaration being made that they shall "come up out of great tribulation" to the blessing which they will inherit. Moreover, this class is represented as being much more numerous than the still more honored class, typified by Joseph.
"LITTLE FLOCK"--"GREAT COMPANY"
In order to present this view clearly, we must refer to Revelation, 7th chapter. There we are given the picture of 144,000, sealed in their foreheads. These are the same that are elsewhere represented as standing with the Lamb on Mount Zion, and singing the song which none but themselves could learn to sing. (`Revelation 14:1-3`.) Again, these are represented as being with the Lamb, standing upon the sea of glass. (`Revelation 15:2,3`.) Thus in various ways this group seems to represent the Very Elect, the saintly few, the Little Flock, to whom it will be the Father's good pleasure to give the Millennial Kingdom, as joint-heirs with their Lord and Redeemer.
In `Revelation 7:4`, we read that these are from the twelve tribes of Israel--12,000 from each tribe. This is understood by Bible Students to signify that God originally arranged for the full number of the Elect to be taken from Natural Israel, as though He did not know that Natural Israel would reject the Lord and crucify Him. The Plan was laid out on the Israelitish basis, even though God knew in advance that Israel would not obtain that which he sought (the chief blessing), but that the Election would obtain it, and the remainder of that nation would be temporarily blinded, until the completion of the gathering of the Elect.--`Romans 11:7,25-33`.
Although many of the Israelites were dispersed amongst the surrounding nations, it is evident from the Scriptural records that the entire nation--every tribe-- was represented in Palestine after the return from Babylonian captivity. Thus, Jesus referred to His work as being for the twelve tribes of Israel, and the Apostles did also. As a matter of fact, the saintly ones of the Jews who heard the call, and who responded, and who were begotten of the Holy Spirit, and who thus became Spiritual Israelites and sons of God--were from all the various tribes, of some more and of some less. These constituted so many of the foreordained 144,000.
But there were not enough of the saintly ones to complete the Election. Hence by Divine favor the Message was carried to the Gentiles, Cornelius being the first Gentile convert. During the intervening centuries, the Gentiles who have responded to God's call have been accepted and begotten of the Holy Spirit, have been reckoned in as Israelites indeed, as spiritual members of the Seed of Abraham, as heirs, together with the elect Jews, to the First Resurrection, according to God's Promise made to
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Abraham--Natural Israel being still heir to God's secondary promises.
Thus the sealing of the Elect has been in progress for nearly nineteen centuries. Altogether, gathered from Jews and Gentiles, there will be 144,000 kings and priests unto God, followers of the Lamb, and His joint-heirs in the Kingdom. The filling up of these assignments of 12,000 each to the twelve tribes we may understand to be accomplished in the same way that British regiments of soldiers in India are recruited. The enlistments are made all over Great Britain, but the enlisted man--no matter from what city or country he be--may be assigned to membership in whatever regiment is deficient in numbers.
"AFTER THESE THINGS I BEHELD"
After the account of the sealing of the 144,000 of the Very Elect, in the same chapter we have an account of the Great Company. We read, "I beheld, and lo, a great company, whose number no man knoweth [unlike the Little Flock, these were not predestinated, or foreordained, as to number], of all nations, kindreds, peoples and tongues, stood before the Throne and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands; and cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God who sitteth upon the Throne, and unto the Lamb."
It should be noticed that the promise to the elect kings and priests is that their blessing will be not before the Throne, but in the Throne. Moreover, their victory will not be shown by palm branches, but by crowns of glory. All these circumstances attest that this Great Company before the Throne and with palm branches are a wholly different company from the Elect, the Bride, who will share Messiah's Throne and glory. This Great Company is elsewhere referred to symbolically as the "virgins," the Bride's companions, who will follow her. They will enter into the palace with her, into the presence of the great King, but they will not be the Bride.--`Psalm 45:14,15`.
This Great Company was explained to the Revelator, and the explanation is for us. We read, "These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. Therefore are they before the Throne of God, and serve Him day and night in His Temple; and He that sitteth on the Throne shall dwell among them."
Bible Students notice that the Little Flock class are styled "the Temple of God," "living stones," whereas this Great Company will serve God in that Temple--in and through the Church. They also notice that this class who will wash their robes and make them white in the blood of the Lamb during a great time of trouble, must of necessity be a different class from the Bride, who are described as watching and keeping their garments unspotted from the world--that they may be without spot and without wrinkle in the presence of the King.
TWO TRIBULATION CLASSES
The Little Flock, the Royal Priesthood, the Elect Church, of which Christ is the Head, will indeed pass through tribulations. So it is written, "Through much tribulation shall ye enter the Kingdom." Indeed we know that the Lord Himself passed through great tribulation, shame, suffering and death. We know the same also of His footstep followers, the Apostles and others.
Nevertheless, these are not described in the Bible as the Tribulation Class, because, by virtue of their greater faith, these are able to rejoice in their tribulations and to count them all joy, knowing that these are working out for them a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory. These pass through the tribulations joyfully, because they consider the things that are seen as temporal. They look with the eye of faith to the things not seen, to the things eternal, which God hath in reservation for them that love Him.
The Tribulation Saints are variously pictured in the Scriptures as those who lack in the amount of their zeal, but who do not lack in their loyalty. The Tribulation Saints fail to go on and fulfil their vows of sacrifice, and to be heroes in the fight against the world, the flesh and the Adversary. As the Scriptures say, "Through fear of death they are all their lifetime subject to bondage"-- bondage to the flesh, bondage to the customs of society --fearful of the sacrificing experiences which they covenanted should be theirs.--`Hebrews 2:15`.
For this reason, they cannot be accepted of the Lord as copies of His dear Son, and as worthy of sharing in His glory, honor and immortality. Nevertheless, the Lord is very compassionate, and tests them as to their loyalty to Him. As many as ultimately prove faithful, loyal, He proposes shall be granted everlasting life, even though they fail of joint-heirship in the Kingdom, the very thing to which they were invited. As it is written, "Ye are all called in the one hope of your calling."--`Ephesians 4:4`.
Undoubtedly, there have been some of this class developed all the way down through the Gospel Age, but the Scriptures picture this class especially in connection with the tribulation coming on the world in the close of this Age. Take for instance, the statement that they should come up out of great tribulation, also St. Paul's statement that "that Day shall try every man's work of what sort it is." They that builded with gold, silver and precious stones, he declares will stand the test. The fire of that Day will not cause them tribulation--will not destroy their faith structure. Then he describes the Great Company class, saying that others have built improperly with wood, hay and stubble, and that the fire of that Day shall completely destroy all such improper structures. He declares, nevertheless, that if they builded, even improperly upon the true Foundation, they shall be saved, so as by fire--saved in the time of trouble, coming up to God's favor through great tribulation, and sharers in a goodly resurrection, although not participants in the First Resurrection. For of it we read, "Blessed and holy are all those who have part in the First [chief] Resurrection; on such the Second Death hath no power; but they shall be priests of God and of Christ and shall reign with Him a thousand years."--`Revelation 20:6`.
BENJAMIN'S FIVE PORTIONS
In dispensing his bounties, Joseph gave abundantly to all of his brethren. But to Benjamin, his full brother, of the same mother, he gave five portions. To Bible Students it appears that, since Joseph clearly typifies The Messiah and His kingly power and glory, the blessings distributed to his brethren represent favors that Messiah will bestow upon Natural Israel, His brethren according to the flesh, in addition to the general blessing which His Messianic reign will give to the whole world, represented in the Egyptians.
According to this picture Benjamin, the son of pain, would represent the Great Company class of the Lord's people, who will come up out of great tribulation to a higher plane, to a higher condition, to a higher blessing, than the remainder of the world. They, begotten of the Holy Spirit like the Church, will also be spirit beings, if found worthy of life. And their brethren, who sold the antitypical Joseph, will nevertheless be greatly blessed by Him.
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LESSONS LEARNED BY JOSEPH'S BRETHREN
--JUNE 1.--`GENESIS 44`.--
"Confess therefore your sins one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed."--`James 5:16`. (R.V.)
TODAY'S lesson shows us that Joseph's brethren were not nearly so hard-hearted as at first they appeared to be--when they purposed to kill him, and subsequently left him in the pit to die, and still later sold him into slavery. The doctrine of total depravity, which so many of us were taught in our youth, is again and again disproved, not only in our own characters, but in our experiences with others. He who considers everybody totally depraved approaches his fellows from the wrong standpoint. Looking for depravity, on which he has theorized, he finds it, and not looking for anything good, he misses what good there is.
The Scriptural proposition is the correct one; viz., that all men are depraved, that none is perfect, no, not one; that all have sinned; all have shared in the results of original sin; and all consequently come short of the glory of God, which was exemplified in the perfection of Father Adam. The Scriptural thought is that God can accept to fellowship with Himself only that which is perfect. He can give His favor and eternal life only to those fully in accord with His own perfection. Hence, all men being sinners through the fall, all need a redemption; all need a reconciliation.
The opportunity for such a reconciliation comes during this Gospel Age to a comparatively few, and to these it is under restriction. They must be perfect in heart, in will, in intention, and by faith must accept of Christ's merit as covering all their blemishes. From this standpoint God accepts them as New Creatures, ignoring the unintentional weaknesses of their flesh. Thus, through Christ, the true Church of consecrated believers alone are reckoned and dealt with as sons of God, have the privileges of sons of God and of fellowship with the Father in prayer, and have the Divine supervision of their interests, which guarantees that all things shall work together
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for their highest welfare. But even these will need to be perfected by the power of the First Resurrection before they shall see God, and be fully ushered into all the glorious things that He has in reservation for them.
The world's justification is arranged for along totally different lines. The time for it, according to the Scriptures, will be the coming Age, when Messiah's Kingdom shall bind Satan's influence, roll away the curse, and bring instead blessings to the entire race. God will not deal with the willing and obedient then as He deals with His faithful now. Instead, they will be left under the care of the great Mediator, and be justified, or made actually right, during those thousand years. The willing and obedient, brought back to the original perfection of Adam, and fully instructed by the great Teacher, will be ready, at the close of the Millennium, to be presented to the Father, and to be accepted by Him as sons. But, meantime, all not willing and anxious for reconciliation will perish by the way, in the Second Death.
The point we would here emphasize is that God nowhere declares that man is totally depraved, but He does declare that the slightest degree of imperfection cannot be tolerated by Him. Hence the Divine arrangement, through Jesus, the Redeemer and Restorer, is that all of our lacks, all of our shortcomings, few or many, much or little, will be made up for each of us by the great Redeemer, without whose sacrifice and aid recovery to perfection and acceptableness with the Father will be impossible.
JOSEPH'S BRETHREN TENDER-HEARTED
Our lesson shows that Joseph's experiences, mixed with faith by him, worked out in him a grand character, full of sympathy and wholly obedient to God. But by a different process, Joseph's ten brethren were exercised by remorse, and became more sympathetic, more brotherly-kind, more loyal to their father Jacob. Rewards of all life's experiences--the bitter and the sweet, our right doings and our wrong doings--are intended, under the Divine supervision, to be corrective and helpful to us. Confidence in God, however, is necessary as a basis for any such blessing. We have seen Joseph's confidence, and today's lesson shows us that his brethren, although of a different character, still recognized the Almighty, had a reverence for Him, and realized that He might be expected to give just recompense for every evil deed.
Our lesson tells us that after the feast which Joseph made and in which Benjamin got five portions, the eleven brethren departed for home, well pleased with their experiences and the favor of the Egyptian ruler. Before their departure, Joseph, desiring to test his brethren as to their sympathy for their father and for their loving interest in their youngest brother, had caused his own silver cup to be placed in the mouth of Benjamin's sack of wheat. After they had gotten fairly started upon their journey homeward to Canaan, Joseph sent after them servants from his house to say, "Why have you been so ungracious to your benefactor? Why have you taken his silver cup? What treacherous men you are!" They protested innocence, and declared that if the cup were found in their possession, they would all willingly become slaves. The search for the cup, according to Joseph's direction, began with the eldest brother and ended with Benjamin's sack. There it was found. In great distress the entire company wended its way back to the palace.
Again Joseph was austere and reproved them, that he might give them the opportunity to show their selfishness and to abandon Benjamin. Again protesting their innocence, they nevertheless declared themselves willing to become Joseph's slaves. But he answered, "God forbid! Only the one who has been guilty--Benjamin--shall be my slave. Return to your families and to your father with food, and continue to enjoy the favors of Egypt."
This proposition he knew would test them. Would they be glad to escape personal servitude, and get back to their own families and leave Benjamin a slave? Had they the same cold heartlessness that they had exhibited in his own case, when they sold him into slavery? Would they similarly disregard their poor old father's interests and happiness?
Then it was that Judah, who had pledged himself to his father that Benjamin should return in safety, made an appeal to Joseph. He narrated the circumstances connected with Benjamin's coming--how the poor old father set his heart upon Benjamin, and how he had pledged himself for the lad's return. He wound up an eloquent plea with the entreaty that he might be retained as the bondman, and that his brother Benjamin might be permitted to go free: "Now, therefore, I pray thee, let thy servant abide instead of the lad, a bondman to my lord; and let the lad go up with his brethren. For how shall I go up to my father, and the lad be not with me? lest peradventure I see the evil that shall come on my father."
The evidence of a change of heart was satisfactory to Joseph, and is to us all. All who love righteousness rejoice in righteousness, as those who love sin rejoice
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in it. When we perceive so marked a change in those men, we rejoice not only for their sakes, but also for the general lesson which their experiences furnish. The conviction is borne in upon us that much of the sin, much of the meanness, much of the cruelty of the present time, may be attributed to inherited weaknesses and immature experience. We say to ourselves, "How great a change probably would be effected by a larger, broader, deeper knowledge of ourselves and of each other!"
And do not the daily experiences of life tend to give us the broadening of sympathies and thus character-development? We believe that this is true. Doubtless there are exceptions to every rule, but it is our conviction that there is a sufficiency of the likeness of God remaining in every member of our race to permit him at times to appreciate the good, the true, the noble, the pure. It is because he is surrounded by sin and selfishness that these Godlike sentiments are so rarely appealed to, or brought into exercise.
It seems reasonable to suppose that if every human being were to have one hundred years of experience under present conditions, and then to be given a fresh start, nearly all of them would profit greatly by the experiences, and live more sane and reasonable lives. Nearly all of them would be more generous, as well as more just. We admit that there are exceptions. We are free to confess that the Divine arrangement which limits human life under present conditions is a very wise one.
Some members of the human family appear to cultivate merely the selfish propensities, and rarely to exercise beneficent sentiments. For such persons to live more than a century would mean to give them that mush more opportunity selfishly to enslave their fellow creatures. God, however, has both the Wisdom and the Power to eventually bring home to each member of our race valuable lessons along the lines laid down by the wise man, "Righteousness exalteth a nation; but sin is a reproach to any people."--`Proverbs 14:34`.
WHEN WILL MEN PROFIT?
But some one will say, Admitting the premise that life's trials and scourgings--providential stripes--teach men the sinfulness of sin and the wisdom of righteousness, admitting that in time all of our race might learn something along the lines of this great lesson, even as did Joseph's brethren, where would be the profit of such instruction, if only the saintly, who walk in the footsteps of Jesus under a covenant of self-sacrifice, are to share in the glorious reward, the Kingdom? How will the remainder of the race profit by their experiences, if death ends all hope? Of what avail can the lessons of life be to those who fail to complete those lessons before they die, or who fail to become saints--fail to become fit for the Kingdom of God?
The answer is that we all have made a mistake in respect to the teachings of the Bible. The Bible nowhere says that all hope of salvation ends when we fall asleep in death. So far as the Church class is concerned, it is true that death will end their period of probation. But it is not true in respect to the world. The Apostle shows that the Church is a special class, called out from the world and given a trial for life everlasting or death everlasting in advance of humanity in general. These, if faithful, will not only gain everlasting life, but have it upon a higher than human plane. As spirit beings, they will attain to that perfection in the Resurrection.
It is to the Church class that the Apostle indicates that, if they commit wilful sin, death will end all, saying, "If ye live after the flesh, ye shall die; but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live." The ye in both cases refers to the Church, not to the world. --`Romans 8:13`.
Again, the Apostle declares, "If we sin wilfully after that we have received a knowledge of the Truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins, but a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation," which would destroy us as adversaries of God. "For it is impossible for those who...were made partakers of the Holy Spirit, and have tasted the good Word of God, and the powers of the world to come, if they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance."--`Hebrews 6:4-6`.
Both of these Scriptures, however, apply exclusively to the Church, because the Church alone is on trial at the present time. The world's time for trial, or testing, will be in the next Age. The thousand years of Christ's reign will be the great thousand-year Judgment Day of the world. In it will be determined the worthiness or unworthiness for everlasting life of all humanity. All found worthy will eventually be perfected and granted the Divine
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blessing of everlasting life. All found unworthy in that world's trial Day will be condemned as unworthy of life, sentenced to the Second Death.
The experiences of the present life, good and bad, will have their bearing upon the world's future trial, but will not decide the case for any one. Because of misuse of present opportunities and knowledge, some will enter upon the future life and its judgment disadvantaged proportionately. Those disadvantages will be their stripes, their whippings, their chastisement, for present failures. Others, rightly exercised by the trials and difficulties of life, will be made more gentle, more sympathetic, more just, more loving, by them, as were Joseph's brethren. Thus they will be the better prepared for a goodly entrance upon the testings of the great Judgment Day of the Messianic Kingdom.
And as Joseph, whom they sold into Egyptian slavery, was the judge of his brethren, so The Christ, Jesus and the Church, will be the Judges of the world. As the Apostle says, "Know ye not that the saints shall judge the world?"--`I Corinthians 6:2`.
As Joseph judged not his brethren according to what they had done to him in the past, but according to their attitude of heart at the time, so the future judgment of the world will take note of the condition of men's hearts at the time, rather than take note of their wrong conditions of the previous time. Nevertheless, the principle of justice continually operates: he who sins shall suffer. Joseph's brethren suffered for the wrong doing toward him, and they identified their various tribulations with that great sin of years gone by. So it will be with humanity in general. Every sin, every transgression, will receive a just recompense of reward, not an unjust one-- not eternal torment.
The good deeds and the evil deeds of mankind each have an influence upon their mentality and character, and that mentality and character are not lost in the sleep of death. There is to be a resurrection of all that are in their graves. All shall hear the voice of the Son of Man and come forth, each in his own order. The saintly ones shall come forth to the perfection of life at the beginning of the Age, that they may be the judges of the world. The unsaintly ones shall come forth also, that they may be brought to a knowledge of the Truth. All shall have the opportunity of profiting by their works in the past, by the lessons learned, and by the glorious light of Messiah's Kingdom, which then will be everywhere, and which will scatter all ignorance, superstition and darkness, and light
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the way of return to fellowship with God and everlasting life.
Our Golden Text is supposed by some to have reference to physical healing. But by others these words are understood especially to apply to spiritual healing, by far the more important. Of these spiritual healings the Psalmist speaks, saying, "Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases; who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with loving kindness and tender mercies." (`Psalms 103:3,4`.) They who hide their sins from themselves and who think to hide them from the Lord greatly err, and will make no progress.
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MERCY IS BETTER THAN SACRIFICE
--JUNE 8.--`GENESIS 45:1`--`46:7`.--
"Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!"--`Psalm 133:1`.
WHEN Joseph beheld how changed were his brethren, he sympathized with them. When he saw that their hearts went back to their wrong course in his own case, and that they realized the Divine disapproval and were sorry, he pitied them. When he saw their interest in his aged father and their unwillingness to hasten his death by an unkind act or word he was full of pity. He wished, however, that the disclosure of his identity should not be witnessed by the Egyptians. Realizing that his emotions were getting the better of him, he hastily cried out, ordering all the Egyptians to leave the room. Then he made himself known, saying, "I am Joseph your brother, whom ye sold into Egypt."
We can well imagine the consternation of the brethren. It had appeared to them that their trials and difficulties were multiplied, and that somehow or other Joseph had been identified with all their troubles. Now, to be in his presence, to hear him speak to them, no longer through an interpreter, but directly in their own language, telling them that he was Joseph, we can imagine how they felt-- stunned.
But Joseph, full of true sympathy and pity, hastened to set them at their ease. He did not cruelly threaten them, nor cause them to suffer punishment for their wrong-doing. He did not even chide them for the wrong. Instead, realizing that sin had already brought them a punishment, Joseph consoled them, saying, "Be not grieved, nor angry with yourselves that ye sold me hither; for God did send me before you, to preserve life...to preserve you a posterity in the earth, and to save your lives by a great deliverance. So now it was not you that sent me hither, but God."
How beautiful the revenge! Joseph heaped upon his brethren unasked forgiveness and expressions of sympathy. Alas, how few Christians under similar circumstances would have been so noble! And yet Christians have much advantage every way over Joseph, in that they have been begotten of the Holy Spirit and have the instructions of the Scriptures. How beautifully Joseph represented in type Christ and His Spirit. How evidently our creeds of the Dark Ages misled us when they taught us to believe that all the Jews, the brethren of Christ, were to be eternally tormented because they had crucified Jesus instead of accepting Him and becoming His disciples!
Now in the better light shining from one page to another of the Bible, God's people are seeing that instead of Messiah's purposing the eternal torture of the Jews, He purposes the contrary--that they shall obtain Divine mercy and forgiveness. This mercy will be extended to them very shortly, after Messiah's Kingdom shall have been established, as St. Paul points out in `Romans 11:25-33`: "They shall obtain mercy through your mercy." The same thought is expressed by the Prophet, saying of Israel, "They shall look upon Him whom they pierced, and shall mourn for Him." (`Zechariah 12:10`.) Theirs will be a mourning of true sorrow, as they shall realize the grievous wrong committed more than eighteen centuries ago. But instead of their being punished with an eternity of torture, the Lord will be gracious to them, as He declares, "And I will pour upon them the spirit of grace and of supplication." How beautiful, and how much in harmony with our typical lesson of today! Joseph's ten brethren apparently typified Israel, as the Egyptians typified the Gentiles, as Benjamin typified the Great Company, and as Joseph himself typified the Messianic class, the Elect, of whom Jesus is the Head, and the overcoming Church, the members of His Body.
"SPEAK COMFORTABLY TO JERUSALEM"
All along, the Bible record has been consistent with itself and with the Divine character. Our trouble has arisen from giving heed to the creeds of the Dark Ages. The Bible indeed does tell that no one can become a member of Spiritual Israel except by believing in Jesus as the Son of God, and becoming associated with Him in the self-denials and sufferings of this present time, that they may have joint-heirship in the coming Kingdom. Our mistake was in adding to that simple Message, and telling the world, the Jews included, that the fate of all others is eternal torment.
Quite to the contrary, now we see that what Spiritual Israel gains is the Kingdom, and that Natural Israel and the world lose, in the sense of failing to attain that highest glory and blessing. But we see also that God's object in arranging for such a Kingdom is that it may bestow the needed blessings upon Natural Israel and through them ultimately upon all people.
This is the general lesson taught by the full forgiveness of Joseph's brethren. The assurance given them that they merely carried out the Divine Program corresponds well with the message that shall ultimately come to the Jews; viz., that their crucifixion of Messiah was merely a carrying out of the Divine Purpose, through which the blessing of God is made available to all the families of the earth. To this agree the words of St. Peter at Pentecost. Addressing some of the repentant Jews he explained this matter fully, saying, "I wot that through ignorance ye did it, as did also your rulers." (`Acts 3:17`.) St. Paul says, "For if they had known they would not have crucified the Lord of glory."--`I Cor. 2:8`.
God's attitude toward the Jews, Joseph's brethren in antitype, is clearly presented in the prophecy of `Isaiah. (40:1,2`.) That prophecy is especially located at the end of this Gospel Age. We believe that it is the message due to the Jews at the present time. It says not one word about their eternal torture, but on the contrary, it is in full agreement with St. Paul's statement that with the end of this Age God's favor will return to the Jews, and they shall obtain mercy through Spiritual Israel--the Messianic Body, of which Jesus is the Head. We read, "Comfort ye, comfort ye My people, saith your God.
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Speak ye comfortably to Jerusalem, and cry unto her, that her warfare is accomplished, that her iniquity is pardoned: for she hath received of the Lord's hand double [the second portion] for all her sins."
Israel has indeed been obliged to drink the cup of ignominy and shame and sorrow, during the nearly nineteen centuries since she sold her Redeemer to the Romans, to be put to death. Sorry we are that so much of this affliction has come to her at the hands of those who mistakenly have professed to be the followers of Jesus! Sorry we are that the Jews have thus had so much reason for failing to understand the Spirit of Christ! They can understand this only by remembering that as there are true Jews and false Jews, so likewise there are true Christians and false Christians. "If any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His."
JOSEPH WAS LONG MISUNDERSTOOD
Joseph's brethren failed to understand him--so great was the difference between their characters and his. Even after they had become more sympathetic and tenderhearted, they had still a sufficiency of bitterness of spirit and of animosity that, if they had been in Joseph's place, they would have seen to it that somehow or other future punishments would have been meted out. They were, therefore, surprised by Joseph's words of brotherly kindness and sympathy, and unable to believe that he meant it all. They concluded that he was dealing graciously with them for his father Jacob's sake.
So we find that years afterwards, when Jacob died, these ten brethren were in great trepidation lest Joseph should then wreak his vengeance upon them. They went to him again, asking for a continuance of his forgiveness. But Joseph said unto them, "Fear not: for am I in the place of God? But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive. Now therefore fear ye not: I will nourish you, and your little ones. And he comforted them, and spake kindly unto them."-- `Genesis 50:19-21`.
JOSEPH WAS TAUGHT OF GOD
However he learned the lesson, it is most manifest that Joseph was taught of God. Vengeance against his brethren he had none. Whatever punishment would come to them for their sin would be not his to inflict, but God's. And that punishment they evidently did receive in the mental torture, fears and forebodings of many years. Joseph had nothing to do with regulating the Divine arrangements whereby Justice always metes out punishment for every wrong. It was his to be generous, loving, kind, an exemplification of the great Redeemer and His Messianic Kingdom.
It was the same in respect to his own experiences. We note with astonishment that a man with so few opportunities had such a comprehensive grasp of the Spirit of Truth, the Spirit of Christ. We who have been begotten of the Holy Spirit, and who have the example of the words of Jesus and the Apostles and the history of all past ages, may still sit at Joseph's feet, and be amazed to perceive how thoroughly he learned of God, and may apply similar lessons to ourselves. Never a murmur, never a word of repining, against the bitter lot that had been his! In every word, in everything, he testifies to God's Goodness, Wisdom, Love and Power. He realized that to have made a single change or alteration in the experiences that had come to him would have been to do injury to the Plan as a whole, and he would have failed to learn some of the lessons of life which he needed.
Oh, how much all the followers of Jesus need to look unto the Lord in respect to all their trying experiences! How much we all need to have and to exercise faith in God--that he knows, He sees and He is able and willing to make all things work together for good to us, because we love Him, because we have been called according to His Purpose, because we are seeking to make that calling and that election sure by the development of a character which will make us "meet for the inheritance of the saints in light," and for joint-heirship with our Redeemer!
JACOB IN EGYPT
Joseph planned that for the five remaining years of the famine, at least, his father Jacob and indeed the entire family should come into Egypt. He thought of the district styled Goshen as very suitable for their purposes, being a cattle-grazing locality. Pharaoh, heartily in accord with Joseph, his prime minister, and pleased with the prosperity of affairs under his management, gave full consent, and suggested that Egyptian wagons be sent to fetch the old man Jacob and the women and children, not so able to ride upon the asses, camels, etc. Joseph prepared delicacies for the journey and little presents, indicative of his love. He sent a special message to his father, "Tell my father of my glory in Egypt, and of all that ye have seen; and ye shall haste to bring down my father hither." Then he kissed them all goodby, saying:
"FALL NOT OUT BY THE WAY"
Evidently Joseph was a keen observer of human nature. Many would have thought it unnecessary to caution the brethren against disputes under all the circumstances. Many would have said, "They will be so overjoyed with the blessings of God in the outcome of their experiences that love will prevail amongst them, and no disputes." The contrary, however, is often true. When prosperity comes, there are opportunities to quarrel over the spoils, to feel more or less of envy and selfishness.
Under former conditions, the brethren would have felt jealous of Benjamin, because of the greater attention which he received from Joseph and because of the present of three hundred pieces of silver given to him. They might have queried as to how much liberty they would have in the land of Goshen. The suggestion might have come to some that they would then be under the thumb of Joseph, and that he would favor Benjamin, etc. Evidently Joseph's warning, "Fall not out by the way," was timely.
We have known matters to go similarly with the Lord's brethren. When in tribulation, their hearts were crying to the Lord, but in prosperity they were disposed to grudge one against another, and to be envious and jealous of each other's opportunities, blessings and privileges. What a great mistake! Each should remember that the Master's eye is noting his progress in Christlikeness. Each should remember that brotherly love is one of the tests of character.
It is all the more true because sometimes brethren in Christ can make more trouble for us than any others. The very closeness of our relationship, the very knowledge of each other, give to each of us opportunities for criticism and evil surmisings that might not arise as respects others. Well it is that all of God's people should accept Joseph's words, "See that ye fall not out one with another by the way." It is the way planned for us by the Lord. It is a narrow and difficult way, full of adversities to the flesh, and trials and tests to the spirit. Proportionately, there should be love and sympathy, co-operation and helpfulness. The words of the Psalmist used as our Golden Text in this lesson, were evidently prophetically written as respects the Church, the Lord's brethren:
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"Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity."
The Psalmist proceeds to compare this unity of the brethren, the Church, with the precious ointment poured upon the head of the king and of the high priest on their induction into office. The significance of the illustration evidently is that the anointing oil typified the Holy Spirit, and that as it ran down the high priest's beard, and even to the skirts of his garment, it anointed the entire body of the priest. That priest typifies Melchizedek, the Royal Priest--Jesus the Head, and the Church His Body. Throughout this Gospel Age the anointing of the Holy Spirit, which came to the Church, the Body of Christ, at Pentecost, has continued, and gives an unction, or anointing, to all of His true members. And by this anointing these members may be recognized as one with Christ, "For by one Spirit ye were all anointed into one Body."--`I Corinthians 12:13`.
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SOME INTERESTING LETTERS
WHAT A CHORD IT STRUCK!
DEAR BROTHER IN CHRIST:
I was glad to receive your letter today, and what a chord it struck! What meaning such words as "First-borns" and "Little Flock" have now! I was glad to hear about Sister Adams. I have been learning much since I saw her, and you may tell her that I find this Truth more wonderful every day. Kindly convey to her Christian greetings from Sister Farrer and myself. I am sure the whole class would join.
Yes, Brother, I have been a Presbyterian minister, graduated from Knox College, Toronto, in 1898. I was at the Assembly Meeting held in Hamilton in 1899. I was commissioner from Regina Presbytery. I never dreamed of this Truth at that time. Truth is stranger than fiction. From the first day I started for Presbytery and college, I knew something was out of gear; what it was I could not tell. I was loyal to the Presbyterian Church. Many of the people I loved dearly: such men as Drs. Grant and Gray of Orillia, Dr. McLeod of Barrie and Dr. Caven of Knox College. I thought a great deal, but Brother, there are some big bits to swallow, and I am afraid if the truth was told, many things were swallowed and never digested, and this is true in all denominations, and
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I find the Presbyterians just as worthy as any. I have been careful in my thoughts, yet held my mind open to conviction. Years of knocking about on the mission field from nearly one end of Canada to the other, has had its effect. When I became fully acquainted with the workings behind the scenes, I was astounded. I have felt so many times that our people were not treated fairly, and certainly many of our poor missionaries were shamefully used, and could not defend themselves. I have certainly wondered where the hearts of the older and more prosperous ministers were. The city of __________ is the limit! One city minister told me a few days ago that the church, i.e., the Presbyterian Church here, had all gone to the Devil. Those were his words. Another minister, a Presbyterian, too, was up to our class on Wednesday last, and is reading the first volume; he knows something is wrong, and what he sees is not Christianity. Is it not strange that so many of our ministers are down on the Truth people! It must be because we hold to the Bible.
Say, Brother, take a look behind the scenes and see every big city minister in __________ lay hold of Evolution and deny the Ransom of Jesus Christ! This year I became heartsick and resolved to remain at home, attend no church, and try to study and love the Bible, as it was the only thing I had worth while. I have not been preaching for awhile on account of poor health, but have been looking on. I knew we should assemble, but where I could not say. It was not at former places. Strange, I had never heard of Bible Students or read Pastor Russell's books. A friend of mine invited me to a meeting one evening, and I went. On returning home I told Mrs. Farrer that I had heard more Scripture than I had studied and heard all the while I had been at the coast, all packed into one talk. It was certainly a wonderful talk. It shook me up; I never heard the like, and I told my wife that that man had the best of the argument by a mile.
During the following week I got hungry for more, but did not know where to go or what literature to get. However, I knew about the meeting the next Sunday, so I went to see if I could get anything to read. I did and hurried home to see what I had. I was not anxious to be seen around the place. I tell you, Brother. I soon found out what a prize I had in that first volume. We had absolutely nothing to compare with the first, fifth and sixth volumes, in college. I have wondered why we did not have them as text books. It was only after I got started in the Truth that I knew that Pastor C. T. Russell was the author of the books. I tell you, Brother Adams, I rejoice to be called a fool for Jesus' sake.
I attended Mr. Wilson's church while down in the city. Poor Wilson, I knew him before I went to college, but he is at sea, in the same boat as we were all in. The fact is we learned nothing much of the Bible at college. I am sending a letter of withdrawal to the Presbytery and will mail you a copy later on.
With much Christian love, I am your brother in Christ,
W. H. FARRER.
THE PEOPLE FREE? NOT SO THE MINISTERS
Something Interesting from an Inquiring Friend.
I wrote the following to a Presbyterian minister:
DEAR SIR:--Do you subscribe to the following statement, taken from the Confession of Faith?--"The Bodies of men after death return to dust, and see corruption, but their souls (which neither die nor sleep), having an immortal subsistence, immediately return to God who gave them. The souls of the righteous, being then made perfect in holiness, are received into the highest Heavens, where they behold the face of God in light and glory, waiting for the full redemption of their bodies; and the souls of the wicked are cast into hell, where they remain in torments and utter darkness, reserved to the Judgment of the great Day. Besides these two places for souls separated from their bodies, the Scripture acknowledgeth none.
"At the last Day, such as are found alive shall not die, but be changed; and all the dead shall be raised up with the self-same bodies, and none other, although with different qualities, which shall be united again to their souls forever."--Confession of Faith, Chapter XXXII, 1, 2.
The following is the answer from said minister:
DEAR MR. __________:--Perhaps next week I may be able to call and see you, but as we have special meetings this week, I could not do so before.
I take it for granted that your inquiry relates to your real relationship to God and is not simply a matter of speculation. For I have no time nor inclination to engage in simple discussion and argument. Life is too short for that.
Nor do I care to defend the teachings of theology, which are quite different things from religion, for nobody is asked to accept Presbyterian Theology--or even read it--except Ministers, Elders and Deacons; you doubtless are aware of that. The first and only thing we require of private members of the church is to accept Jesus Christ, God incarnate, as Savior and Lord. Sincerely yours, __________
What would be an appropriate answer on my part?
THE EDITOR'S REPLY
I would not attempt to discuss the matter further with the gentleman, but would merely thank him for his kind letter, and say that, as I was neither a minister nor an Elder of the Presbyterian Church, my conscience would go free; but that I had a sympathy for elders and ministers. I would proceed to say that, having found something satisfactory on the subject of "The State of Men after Death, and of the Resurrection of the Dead" (heading of chapter in the "Confession," from which the extract is copied), I ventured to recommend to him STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES by Pastor Russell, the books which God blessed to my heart and head enlightenment, hoping they might prove a blessing to him also.
Re the Dayton Flood: The newspaper reports of the number of dead have been much exaggerated. It is indeed sad, and many thrilling experiences and miraculous rescues have been reported.
As far as we can learn up to this writing, none of the Dayton Ecclesia were drowned, although a number of us have had thrilling experiences and narrow escapes. The shrieks and wails of the panic-stricken people, mingled with the moans of drowning horses, etc., was terrible to hear. It turned our minds to Daniel's description of the great time of trouble.
Sister Pottle and Sister H. F. Rieck were confined to an attic with the writer for about thirty hours before the sisters were rescued by boats. Here the value of the Truth was
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manifested. God's promised Grace to help in time of need was surely manifest, as the sisters were calm and composed. In the most perilous moments, one of the sisters calmly said, "Well, perhaps the time has come."
Our experience has been a valuable one. After forty-eight hours of confinement, the writer waded through about four feet of water for four squares, where the troops helped him into a boat and then to the landing. Brother Driscoll, also, will have some thrilling experiences to relate to you.
We still have many, many blessings to count. One of the greatest is the knowledge of the Truth, and the love of the brethren. This experience will draw us closer together, as we have learned of the dear brethren's anxiety and efforts for our rescue.
Beloved, remember us kindly at the Throne of Grace, that we may be meek, humble and serviceable.
Your Brother by Participation,
P. D. POTTLE.--Dayton, Ohio.
REQUESTS FOR PILGRIM VISITS
Please bear in mind that with this issue of the TOWER all requests for Pilgrim visits now on file expire. All who are desirous of securing the visits by the traveling brethren during the ensuing year--May, 1913, to May, 1914--should promptly notify us. No charge is made for this service, the expense being borne by contributions to the Tract Fund. The friends at each place provide proper places for the meetings, and are pleased to entertain the Lord's servants.
We request that postcards be used in making applications for these visits, and specially desire replies to all of the following questions. The questions need not be repeated, but merely indicated thus: (a), (b), etc. (a) How many Bible Students in your vicinity use the STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES? (b) Are weekly meetings held? (c) How many are usually in attendance? (d) Where do you now meet on Sundays? (Give full street addresses and name of auditorium.) (e) At what hours are the Sunday meetings held? (f) Was a vote taken on the Pilgrim invitation? (g) How many voted for the invitation to be sent? (h) Do you desire Sunday appointments for Special Public Lectures? (i) How frequently do you desire such Special appointments? (j) What is the seating capacity of Auditorium you could secure? (k) What attendance do you think could be secured for well-advertised public sessions in good Auditorium? (l) Would a suitable place be found for meetings not specially advertised? (m) Have the members of your class chosen leaders in accordance with suggestions of SCRIPTURE STUDIES, Volume VI., chapters 5 and 6? If so, give name and full address of each. (n) Give full names and full addresses of the two (2) to whom notices of Pilgrim visits should be sent. (Please notify the Pilgrim Department as to any change or removal.) (o) If your town is not on a railroad give the name of proper railroad station at which to stop. (p) How many miles from station is meeting place, and which direction from station? (q) Would Pilgrim be met at station? (r) If not, how should Pilgrim get from said station? (s) Give writer's full name and address. (t) Any additional remarks.
BEREAN QUESTIONS IN SCRIPTURE STUDIES
Series VI., Study XIV.
SUNDRY EARTHLY OBLIGATIONS OF THE NEW CREATION
Read p. 583, par. 1, to p. 585, par. 1.
(35) What is a "busybody," and what is the Scriptural reproof of such? P. 583, par. 1.
(36) How should the Golden Rule be applied in such cases? P. 583, par. 2.
(37) What is the peculiar form in which this natural tendency to meddle in the affairs of others sometimes attacks the New Creature? P. 583, par. 3.
(38) When tempted to interfere with the affairs of others, what questions should we ask ourselves? P. 584, par. 1, first part.
(39) Would it be "busybodying" on the part of a parent to look into the affairs of the family under his care? P. 585, top.
(40) Where is the admonition against "busybodying" to be especially remembered and heeded? P. 585, par. 1.
Read p. 586, par. 1, to p. 589, par. 2.
"BLESSING GOD AND CURSING MEN"
(41) How great is the influence of the tongue among the members of the natural body? P. 586, par. 1.
(42) What is the only proper and successful method of restraining the tongue? P. 587, par. 1, 2.
(43) What are the cravings of the new mind for fellowship with kindred minds? P. 588, par. 1.
(44) What are the admonitions of the Word against associating with evil-doers? P. 588, par. 2.
(45) What should be our sentiments toward and association with those related to us by ties of blood? P. 589, par. 1.
(46) What was evidently the intention of the Lord with respect to the forming of a new family--the "household of faith?" P. 589, par. 2.
Read p. 590, par. 1, to p. 594, par. 1.
(47) Does this new relationship imply the ignoring of sex proprieties, or that the unbelieving husband or wife should be neglected? P. 590, par. 1.
"HONOR ALL MEN"
(48) What should be the attitude of the New Creation toward the powers that be? What are the Scriptural admonitions along this line? P. 590, par. 2, 3.
(49) What advantage has the New Creature from his viewpoint of present conditions in the world? P. 591, par. 1, 2.
(50) Is it wise or necessary for the New Creation to alarm the world in respect to the Time of Trouble? P. 592, par. 1.
(51) What position should the New Creation take in the matter of voting? P. 593, par. 1 to 5.
(52) Should we use carnal weapons and fight for our native country and its rulers? P. 594, par. 1.
Read p. 594, par. 2, to p. 598, par. 1.
(53) In the event of our being required to do military service, what would be the proper course to pursue? P. 594, par. 2.
THE NEW CREATION AND MORAL REFORMS
(54) Explain how our consecration vow should touch and purify every act of our lives. P. 595.
WEARING OF COSTLY APPAREL
(55) Give three good reasons why the New Creation should not wear extravagant and conspicuous apparel. P. 596, par. 1 to 4.
(56) Would the investing of money in stocks, bonds, etc., be any more in harmony with our consecration vow than if spent upon extravagant dress and luxurious homes? P. 597, par. 1.
(57) Is there any connection between our stewardship and the fact that the Lord has left His cause in need of financial support? P. 597, par. 2.
(58) Briefly, what would be considered the proper course for the New Creation with respect to dress and money matters? P. 598, par. 1.
Series VI., Study XV.
THE FOES AND BESETMENTS OF THE NEW CREATION
Read p. 599, to p. 602, par. 2.
(1) What is the chief enemy of the New Creation? Is the New Creature double-minded, or is he controlled by two wills? P. 599.
(2) Are the death of the flesh and its will, and the subsequent resurrection of the flesh actual or reckoned matters? And how must these "dead" and "alive" conditions be maintained by the New Creature? P. 600, par. 1.
(3) What is the declaration of the Scriptures respecting the natural heart? And how is the heart of the New Creature different? P. 600, par. 2.
(4) How does the old heart, the selfish disposition, constantly assail the new heart and practise deceptions upon it? P. 601, par. 1.
(5) What is one of the favorite and deceptive arguments of this old heart? P. 601, par. 2.
(6) How must the new heart meet these attacks? P. 602, par. 1, 2.