VOL. XXXIV JUNE 1 No. 11
A. D. 1913--A. M. 6041
The Transforming Influence of Thought.............163
Importance of Right Thinking..................163
The Church On Trial for Life..................164
The Influence of Thought Upon Health..........165
Earthly Loves vs. Heavenly Love...................165
"Keep Thy Heart With All Diligence"...........166
"Let Your Moderation Be Known"....................167
"Meditate On These Things"....................167
Service of the Brethren a Proper Zeal.............168
The Preparation for the Divine Nature.........168
Moses, the Goodly Child...........................169
Co-operating With God's Providence............169
Aided and Protected...........................170
God's Instrument In Preparation...................170
Moses, Jethro's Shepherd......................171
1913--General Conventions....................162, 172
Interesting Items and Letters.....................172
Report of the Glasgow Class I.B.S.A...........173
Berean Lessons and Testimony Meetings.............175
Berean Questions in Scripture Studies.............175
WATCH TOWER BIBLE AND TRACT SOCIETY
CHARLES T. RUSSELL, PRESIDENT
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EXCURSIONS TO PERTLE SPRINGS
Friends desiring to go to Pertle Springs via St. Louis or by Special Train from Kansas City should address Laymens Home Missionary Movement of either city.
EXCURSIONS--TEXAS TO HOT SPRINGS
We are advised that the I.& G.N.R.R. will furnish tourist sleepers to Hot Springs from San Antonio, May 31, train 4, 2 P.M.; also from Galveston 2:40 P.M., same date, at special rates. Those desiring accommodations may address Laymens Home Missionary Movement, Wallis, Texas.
EXCURSIONS TO LOS ANGELES AND SAN FRANCISCO
A special party will leave San Francisco for Los Angeles Convention on the Southern Pacific, Valley Line, train No. 50, June 10th, at 4:40 P.M., arriving at Los Angeles 8:15 next morning.
A special party will leave Los Angeles for San Francisco Convention on the Southern Pacific, Valley Line, June 15th, at 7:15 P.M., arriving at San Francisco next morning at 9 A.M.
All friends attending these Conventions or the One Day Conventions following them, at Portland, Tacoma, Seattle, Victoria, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton and Regina, should obtain from the Ticket Agent a Certificate-Receipt showing that they paid full fare going to Convention of the Laymens Home Missionary Movement. This Certificate-Receipt, signed by Convention Secretary, will entitle the owner to a return ticket at one-third (1/3) fare, over same railroad.
BETHEL HYMNS FOR JULY
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 July follow: (1) 165; (2) 267; (3) 130; (4) 58; (5) 95; (6) 82; (7) 101; (8) 299; (9) 4; (10) 326; (11) 145; (12) 293; (13) Vow; (14) 246; (15) 7; (16) 313; (17) 168; (18) 149; (19) 259; (20) 15; (21) 208; (22) 222; (23) 320; (24) 260; (25) 267; (26) 43; (27) 155; (28) 166; (29) 305; (30) 120; (31) 209.
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THE TRANSFORMING INFLUENCE OF THOUGHT
"As he thinketh in his heart, so is he." (`Proverbs 23:7`.) "Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life."--`Proverbs 4:23`.
THE HEART is one of the most important organs of our body. If it ceases to work, death is sure to follow. The blood that flows through the heart constitutes the life, the energy of the body. If the blood current is interrupted for a little while, a clot is formed. This is so much of a preparation for death. There must be a continual stream of blood circulating through our bodies to keep life there.
In view of this important function of our natural hearts, the Bible very properly uses the heart, the center of life, as a symbol of the center of our affections, including the will. Our will has to do with everything we do. Whoever of the Lord's people wills to seek more and more to purify himself becomes more and more alive. If we are pure in heart, we resolve to live righteously and soberly in the present life. Whoever appreciates the principle that right is right, and wrong is wrong will desire to live right --whether Jew or Gentile or the Church of God.
The Church, having accepted God's terms, have made a consecration of their lives to Him. They have engaged to fight a good fight against the world, the flesh and the Devil. They are under special obligations as New Creatures. Their hopes and ambitions are separate from those of the world. They are therefore doubly responsible in respect to their hearts, which represent their inmost sentiments.
According to a man's innermost sentiment, so is he. As a man thinketh in his heart, so is his real character. What is your real will? What are your real sentiments? Not, What words do you use? not, What are your actions? but, What is the motive underlying all these?
The New Creature is to be God-like, spiritual, eventually of the spirit nature in glory--perfect. But before it attains that perfection, the heart of the New Creature is required to prove its loyalty. Some will be overcomes in a higher sense than others, but none will be overcomers except those who are true, loyal, pure. If, therefore, we have made a consecration to God, it would be our endeavor that our hearts, our desires, our motives be perfect. The only proper attitude is to confess our imperfections, if we are wrong. God expects us to be loyal of heart. And that loyalty of heart should reach out and control the whole life.
If our thoughts are not according to our ideals, we should endeavor to make them so. We should put away anger, malice, hatred, strife, and all such works of the flesh and the Devil. With some people, in some conditions, these thoughts go very deep. It is not the transitory thoughts of the mind--the passing thoughts--that are meant in our text. Even people of very bad character may at times have deep emotions. The eyes of some persons will be suffused with tears over some trivial matter. This makes them appear to be very tender-hearted, and yet their lives may show that they would as easily be moved to some vicious deed as to sympathy.
We see this fact illustrated in the conduct of mobs. The people who hailed Jesus as King were five days later crying, "Crucify Him!" Those who shortly before had seemed to be so appreciative of Him appeared to lose that appreciation.
IMPORTANCE OF RIGHT THINKING
In reality a man is not always what on the surface he seems to be. His real character is deep down below--the purpose of his life. These are not the mere transitory thoughts, but the deep fissures of thought, if we may so designate those which involve the whole life. The Scriptures bring to our attention the fact that we are to be transformed by the renewing of our minds--by having them made over.--`Rom. 12:2`.
The Apostle, speaking of some very vicious traits of character, says, "And such were some of you, but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified, in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God." (`1 Cor. 6:11`.) This cleansing, this sanctifying, comes not merely through the reading of the Truth, or the mental application of the Truth, but through the heart--thinking on the Truth. This heart-thinking, these deep resolutions, are ours as Christians, and are to be guided by certain principles. These have to do with the real man whom God is considering--not the old creature, more or less blemished, according to the degree of depravity. God looks at the New Creature.
These deep heart convictions and purposes constitute a transformation of character. This is the man's real condition, and so is he. If he have some transitory emotion of anger or of malice, it would not be his real thought, his real intention. Therefore it would not be he, but his old nature, temporarily asserting itself. As a New Creature, he is to watch his words, his thoughts, his actions. If a transitory, wrong thought should pass through his mind, it would not be the thought of his heart. And he as a New Creature, should stop it, put it away, so that it
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may not take root in his heart, and choke out better sentiments.
This right thinking of the heart has very much to do with the whole life. The Apostle says that we are transformed by the renewing of our minds, to know what is the perfect will of God. This is the Christian's standpoint. How glad we are that our Heavenly Father is judging us from this standpoint! How glad we are that He is able to read the heart, that He knows our hearts, that He knows our inmost thoughts!
At one time we might have thought that we were doing God service when we were not. We show our loyalty to God by giving attention to His Word, that we may know what is His will. The more we study God's Word, the more we receive the spirit of the Truth, and the more we appreciate it. And in proportion as we understand God's regulations and desire to be guided by them, our hearts will become purified. Then the more care shall we take of our hands, what they shall do; and of our tongues, what they shall say. Thus we shall keep our hearts--submit our wills to the will of God.
The will is a part of our heart, just as the rudder is a part of the ship. The new will is the rudder to steer us this way or that way. The more we understand the Word of the Lord, the better we understand how to guide our lives. Therefore we are to keep our hearts and purify them by the knowledge of God's Truth, the study of God's Truth. To do this, the will must ever be on the alert, watching with prayer and thanksgiving.
THE CHURCH ON TRIAL FOR LIFE
Some one may ask, why should we do all this? In a general way we might answer, that we may do right-- because right is right. But that reason is not sufficient for us. While all appreciate the superiority of right over wrong, yet in our fallen condition we need to have some inducements to action. So the Lord puts certain inducements before us. He says, "If your heart is right, I desire to give you everlasting life. If your heart is wrong, then you will not be of the kind to whom I will grant this boon. You will die the Second Death."
Six thousand years ago there was a trial. Our first father, Adam, was tried, and failed. Consequently we have no right to life. But God has arranged through our Lord Jesus that every member of Adam's race may have another trial. The Father is willing to give life everlasting to all who love righteousness.
So we thankfully accept this provision, and say, "Heavenly Father, wilt Thou indeed give us another opportunity for gaining everlasting life? We would love to have that life! We are very thankful for the opportunity! We love righteousness! If we are loyal to the principles of righteousness, shall we get everlasting life? It is our desire that Thy will be done in us--even that we love righteousness and hate iniquity." "Very well, then," the Heavenly Father says, "I will put you into the School of Christ, where you will learn righteousness."
Day by day we are learning in the School of Christ. Our different experiences are a part of the general instructions for those who love righteousness and who desire to be taught of the Lord. The issue of our trial will be life or death. The world is not now on trial. There is no possibility for the world to gain life as yet. During this Gospel Age the Church are the only ones who are under this Covenant of Sacrifice--who are on trial, therefore, for everlasting life or everlasting death. In the next Age, the world will have their opportunity for learning obedience. Then the issue for them will be life or death.
God says, "I have set before you life and death, blessing or cursing." There is a curse for every one who loves unrighteousness; there is a blessing for every one who loves righteousness. So during the thousand years of Christ's Reign the world will be on trial for everlasting life or everlasting death. All who are obedient will get everlasting life. But all who have the spirit of Satan will be destroyed in the Second Death.
Only those who are more than mere overcomers will be of the Royal Priesthood. There is no excuse for our getting into the Great Company. Let us keep our hearts with all diligence. Let us watch our hearts. If they are in full harmony with God's will, we shall have little trouble with our tongues. "Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh."--`Math. 12:34`.
Our heart is the most wonderful organ of our body. The tongue is the most subtle of all our members. The Lord takes our words as an index of our heart condition. But since we are imperfect, it is not possible for us to be faultless in word and deed. Yet we are diligently and faithfully to seek to attain the perfect mastery of our words. We should be especially on guard in respect to evil speaking. Every tendency toward slander is to be checked. Whoever of us is reviled is not to revile again. These tendencies belong to the old nature. To be pleasing to the Master, we are to keep our hearts free from every form of evil. If this be done, the heart is rightly instructed of the Lord. Then we will know that we must make good whatever is wrong. We are bound, thoroughly bound, to make it good to the best of our ability. Our heart must keep itself right.
DEFICIENCY IN MODERN EDUCATION
This same principle is applicable to the whole world, though not on a scale so far reaching. Mankind are influenced by thought, by experience. So vicious children may be trained up under favorable environments to become useful citizens. We have seen where, even with people of the world, good resolutions to live honestly, justly, soberly, have had a blessed influence on the life, making noble men and women, although these may not be Christians.
We have also seen the reverse of this--those who were criminals, but not so of necessity. Some of them were born under good conditions; but have read bad books and meditated upon sinful things. Thus the thoughts of their hearts have been evil instead of good. Thus they have become inclined toward evil. As they allow their minds to run in a certain direction, and allow these thoughts to become deeply rooted in their hearts, some of them become very vicious.
We were deeply impressed with this fact in noticing the photographs of the four gunmen recently convicted of murder in New York. Had we seen their pictures before knowing who they were, we should have said, "Those are strong characters." Their hearts had gone wrong, doubtless because of wrong education and a failure to appreciate the principles of righteousness. This seems to be largely the case at the present time. Very few see the principles of righteousness at all. The majority are swayed by superstition, by fear and by hopes which are more or less ephemeral, more or less deceptive.
So we see that the general education of our day is lacking in a very important respect. Although the schools have taken away to some extent the veil of ignorance and superstition, yet they are not giving instead the full, proper view of righteousness. This is because in a general way the Divine character and the Divine laws are being ignored. There is an attempt to teach mortality entirely
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aside from the Divine Law. But this course seems to be undermining faith--separating the pupils from faith in a Supreme Creator. Thus we see that while the world is making wonderful progress in education, yet it is not reaching its own ideals. The human mind in its fallen and perverted condition, is unable to see the subject of morality from a standpoint which educators would put before it.
The human mind needs the influence of its higher organs to assist the lower organs. Hence, although these educational influences are beneficial in many respects, yet they are very injurious in others. They do not inculcate veneration for God and for the Divine will. Therefore people are unable to grasp the best principles. The only persons who are in the right attitude are those who are seeking to have new thoughts, to have thoughts conformed to the Divine arrangement, taking the mind of Christ instead of their own imaginations and judgment, and thus growing up into Him in all things. This is our happy position.
INFLUENCE OF THOUGHT UPON HEALTH
There is another view of the text--"As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he"--given by Christian Scientist; namely, that according to our minds, so be it unto us. They get some good out of this view. They say that if one thinks about kind, noble things, he will be influenced thus. We think our Christian Scientist friends are partly right and partly wrong. They hold that if one thinks himself to be well, he will be well; that if one thinks himself to be sick, he will be sick. There is a measure of truth in this view.
One-half the people in the world are sick because they think they are so. If they thought, not about their aches and pains, but about more helpful things, they would no doubt be better and stronger in every way. The mind has something to do with our condition. Whoever mopes about a headache will undoubtedly make it worse. Whoever tries to put the thought of his condition away and to give attention to other things will undoubtedly help himself.
The less we think about our aches and pains the better for us. If we talk about them we aggravate them. It is also bad to exercise too much sympathy with each other. Of course, there are times when it would be cruel not to show sympathy. But it is not wise to encourage those who are weak to complain about their condition. We become stronger in proportion as we try to avoid thinking of our ailments.
The mistake made by our Christian Scientist friends is that they carry this principle too far. Thinking ourselves sound will not make us so. And it would not be right to lie about the matter, and to say that we have no aches and pains when we have them. The middle line is the one which the Bible encourages--not to say that we have neither aches nor pains, not to say that death is "mortal error," and that there is no death. But we can help the
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dying process along, or we can seek to cultivate the more helpful thoughts, and thus exercise a helpful influence upon ourselves and others.
One notices this principle in action in a sick room. Some people will go into the sick room, express a great deal of sympathy, and leave the sick person under the impression that he is in a much worse condition than he really is; whereas they should have helped the person by encouraging remarks. It is not necessary to say to the sick, "You are looking extremely bad!" But we might say, "Are you feeling better this morning? Have you had a good rest?" Many people do not know how much they do rest, and do not feel thankful enough. So we might suggest, "I hope you are feeling thankful to the Lord, and that you are glad because of this beautiful day. See how the sun shines into your room! Hear the birds sing!" The condition of some people when they are sick is that of "groanings which cannot be uttered." Sick people need some one to bring sunshine into the room.
So, then, dear friends, let us resolve that since we have covenanted with the Lord to become dead to the old life, to the old ambitions, to the things of the past, these are to be all given over. We will wish to think as the Lord would have us think, to view all the affairs of life as He would have us view them, and to be influenced by the ambitions which He sets before us in His Word. Thus doing, we shall as New Creatures grow into the character-likeness of the Lord.
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EARTHLY LOVES VS. HEAVENLY LOVE
JOURNALISTS realize that for some years past the civilized world has entered upon an epoch of passion, lust and crime. Editors, especially of the better journals, realizing that the publication of details tends to stir up anger and lustful passions, are unitedly suppressing these. Their wisdom is to be commended, especially in view of the fact that their business managers, knowing the depraved taste of the people, realize that the more nauseating the details, the greater the interest of the public in general, and the greater their appreciation of the journal which panders to their taste.
There are different ways of accounting for this wave of passion and crime. Our enemies would doubtless charge that our teachings, favoring the idea that the Bible Hell is not a place of eternal torment, but the tomb, are setting at liberty human passion by taking off the brake of fear. Our reply is that the vicious do not receive our message. As the Scriptures declare, "None of the wicked shall understand, but the wise [in wisdom from on High] shall understand." The viciously wicked are not sufficiently interested to find out what we believe or teach. Their beliefs are not built upon the Word of God, but upon the general weight of denominational prestige.
On the contrary, our charge is that the general unbelief in God and in the Bible--unbelief in any kind of Hell or Heaven--more likely has to do with this wave of crime. For the past thirty years our great colleges have been turning out agnostics by the thousands. Nearly every graduate is an agnostic. The influence of their unbelief in the Bible pervades every stratum of society, because of their influence in the higher walks of life--in the pulpit, in social circles, etc. And be it noted that the crimes of our day are frequently committed by college-bred men and women, and by others who, under their influence, discredit the Bible as the Word of God.
But we believe that there is something peculiar to our time, in addition to the foregoing. Ours is a day of great mental activity in every direction--a day of push, of feverish excitement, along all lines. Highly seasoned foods and drinks whet the physical appetite, and lead on to spicy desires in every direction. The strain is too great for our race, considering its weakness, its degeneration attained during the past six thousand years. But whatever is the philosophy, the fact remains that the world is in a very feverish condition, in a condition of intense excitement, easily aroused to expression along every line--anger, malice, hatred, strife, envy, pride.
God's consecrated people, although not of the world,
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are in the world. Although they are New Creatures, with new wills, "sanctified in Christ Jesus," nevertheless they "have this treasure in earthen vessels." Their earthen vessels are subject to like passions and storms to those which assail the world in general. If we are right in supposing that the Adversary himself and the fallen angels have much to do with the excitement of passions in wrong directions, then we may feel sure also that these spirit adversaries would be especially on the alert to entrap and ensnare the consecrated followers of the Lord. As St. Paul expresses it, "We are not ignorant of his devices" (`2 Cor. 2:11`), and we realize that flesh and blood is not competent for a struggle against the "wicked spirits in influential positions." (`Eph. 6:12`.) The Lord's people, therefore, need to be on the alert more than do others, even though all need to be specially alert now to withstand the evil tendencies of our day, which all admit, however they may explain them.
"KEEP THY HEART WITH ALL DILIGENCE"
The secret of the Christian's strength consists in his having given up his own will--the will of his own flesh-- and having taken instead of it the will of Christ. His danger consists of the endeavor of his flesh to override the decision of his new will. The flesh covertly insists that this and that and the other things are not wrong, because they are natural. It insists that its rights should be conserved; it even sometimes insists that the New Creature would commit a crime in mortifying the flesh, with its affections and desires.--`Col. 3:5`; `Gal. 5:24`.
The New Creature cannot rely upon the suggestions of the flesh in every matter. Experience teaches it that it would be deceived and ensnared if it gave heed to the counsels of the flesh. Hence the New Creature must rely wholly upon the Lord and His counsel--the Word of God. The New Creature's reasoning upon any subject must be along the lines of Divine instruction. He dare not trust his own judgment, the judgment of his own flesh in the matter; neither dare he trust the judgment of fellowmen, who might be more or less influenced by their fleshly minds, however conscientious, and however proper they might intend their advice to be. The New Creature must hear from the Word of God the outline of his proper course, and must follow. He dare not deviate from it, not knowing what dire results might follow.
As the Christian advances in spiritual development, in control of the flesh, in the appreciation of the mind of Christ, he certainly does, in one sense of the word, become "strong in the Lord and in the power of His might" --the power of the Holy Spirit. He becomes more gentle, more meek, more patient, more brotherly-kind, more loving. He is thus developing the fruits and growing in the graces of the Holy Spirit and in character-likeness to the Master and Pattern. But his dangers are not over; for he finds the Adversary and the flesh ready to attack him along new lines--totally different from those of the attacks when he first gave his heart to the Lord.
These later attacks are along the lines of love--the very climax of spiritual attainment. As a New Creature, he desires that his love shall be pure, holy, spiritual. He desires that his love for the brethren shall be along the same lines as is his love for the Father and for the Son and for the holy angels. But as he attempts to adjust this love to present conditions, his holy and pure intentions and ambitions and desires are assailed by the flesh.
Not merely do the brethren and sisters, like himself, appreciate spiritual things, purity, truth, etc., but their development in the fruits of the Spirit tend to make them more attractive in the flesh, as well as more attractive in mind and disposition. As the spiritual love and confidence and fellowship increase, there is a new danger through the weaknesses of the flesh. Hence there is necessity for every child of God to be constantly on the alert--watching unto prayer against any and every intrusion of the fleshly mind, its appetites and desires. It must be mortified, crucified, killed, whatever the cost, in order that the New Creature may survive. The life of the one means the death of the other. The sooner we comprehend this great truth, the better for us.
"SET YOUR AFFECTIONS ON THINGS ABOVE"
These earthly loves do not always tend toward sensuality, but they do always tend in another direction from the interests of the New Creature. We have known instances in which very strong attachments grew up between brethren, and similarly between sisters, to their spiritual injury. The injury consists in a satisfaction of the longings of their souls in an earthly companionship, however pure. It is not the Lord's intention that His people should have heart-satisfaction in anybody, on the earthly plane. It is His intention that thorough loyalty to Him and to His Word will make us realize our individual responsibility to Him, and draw us individually close to Him, that in Him we may each find the companionship, joy, and peace which all true hearts crave.
Any satisfaction, therefore, in the fellowship of the old creature, however pure-intentioned, is to the discredit of the New Creature and his spiritual fellowship with the Lord. The fact that we would be fully satisfied in any one on the earthly plane should be an evidence to us that we have not attained that lofty sentiment and aspiration which the Lord designs for us and which He alone can satisfy.
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The admission into our lives of a close, absorbing fellowship in the flesh, however pure the intention, would be a disadvantage to the New Creature in another way. Not only would it imply his failure to rightly appreciate the Lord and fellowship with Him, but it would imply a failure to rightly appreciate the fellowship of the entire Body of Christ, which is the Church.
The Spirit of Christ is too broad to permit the centering of our sympathy and interest upon one individual, except that individual be the Lord Himself. As for others--the Body of Christ, the Church--our interest should be in all of them, not merely in the rich, but in the poor; not merely in the wise and noble, but in the less wise and ignoble; not merely in the educated, but also in the ignorant and stupid. Our interest must not be in the flesh, but in them as New Creatures in Christ. And those who have the greatest handicap as respects earthly teaching and weaknesses of the flesh are the ones deserving of our earthly sympathies and affections, as they strive to fight the good fight and overcome their blemishes.
We exhort, therefore, that we as the Lord's people set our affections more and more upon the things above, and not on the things of the earth, that we may be transformed, that we may thus prove what is the good and acceptable will of God--that His will may be done in us perfectly. His will is not unreasonable. He remembers our frame--that it is but dust. He desires our will to be that our consecration shall be to Him, that it shall not be along lines of the flesh, but of the spirit, and not merely toward one individual, or little clique of the Church, but toward all who have named the name of Christ and who have set their faces Heavenward as soldiers of the cross marching toward the antitypical Mount Zion and the general Assembly of the Church of the First-born.--`Psalm 103:14`; `Romans 8:4`; `Hebrews 12:23`.
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"LET YOUR MODERATION BE KNOWN"
ST. PAUL urged, "Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand." (`Phil. 4:5`.) The latter clause of this exhortation implies that it belongs specially to the closing of this Gospel Age--to the opening of the New Dispensation. Surely we find his words applicable to ourselves--yea, to all mankind!
Surely there never was a time when this counsel of moderation was so much needed as now! The very air seems charged with some exciting, nervous force. Good people, wise people, thoughtful people, seem easily excited and liable to lose their balance at the very suggestion of ridiculous and foolish things. If any of us find such to be our condition, prayer should be made for that Wisdom which cometh from Above, to strengthen, establish and settle our hearts and lives in the will of God.
Excitement over some vagary of interpretation of God's Word may be injurious to ourselves, injurious to those with whom we may have any influence, and injuriously encouraging to the one who propounds the foolish interpretation, whether such interpretation relates to this journal, to its Editor, to the general interests of the Harvest work, or to other matters and persons.
It is unavoidable that politicians, socialists, anarchists and others, attempting to forecast the future respecting themselves and the world, should be carried away with their own ideas, and lose their bearings and talk irrationally. God's people, on the contrary, are to be most moderate in all things. First, they are to recognize their own littleness and inability, and God's greatness and sufficiency. Secondly, they are to remember that God is ordering all the affairs and interests of His Church and also those of the world; and that all things are working together for good to those who love Him and who are called according to His purpose--to be members of His elect Church, the Bride of Christ.--`Rom. 8:28-30`.
Such consciousness of personal littleness and of Divine greatness should keep us very humble and restrain us from all boastfulness and headiness and "know-it-all-ness." We should be very thankful and very appreciative of what God has made known to us of His gracious purposes, but should strictly avoid every attempt to run before the Lord and to try to rudely break into any feature of His Plan which He has not yet unlocked. We should remember that any knowledge we might gain in advance of God's due time would be injurious to us. As, for instance, Mother Eve, already possessed of knowledge of good, by disobedience broke into and gained a knowledge of evil, in advance of the Divine regulation. The knowledge thus gained was expensive.
AVOID WHATEVER ENGENDERS STRIFE
We urge THE WATCH TOWER readers to exercise moderation in respect to their faith and conduct in all matters --including their chronological forecasts of the future. In our judgment, it is very unwise to spend valuable time and energy in guessing what will take place this year, next year, etc. On the contrary, we should be using the knowledge we possess--doing with our might what our hands find to do. The Adversary undoubtedly would like to attract us away from the things that we already know, and from our privileges of service, into speculation respecting those matters of which we have no knowledge. We urge that the Lord's people stifle curiosity, and desist from prying into things not clearly set forth in God's Word, as being injurious to them, hurtful to the Cause we are all desirous of serving, and tending to hinder the work of grace in our own hearts and in the hearts of those to whom we are the Lord's ambassadors and mouthpieces.
We take this occasion to remind our readers afresh that nowhere in our writings have they found anything positively stated respecting the closing years of this Age, except that we understand that the Gentile Times will close in October 1914, and that consequently we expect, speedily following that date, the transfer of the rulership of earth to the great King of Glory, in a "time of trouble such as never was since there was a nation." We have pointed out that prior to that date a testing work will be in progress in the Church--a time in which the question will be, not so much, who will fall? as, who shall be able to stand in this evil day?--`Eph. 6:11`.
We did in discussing the Great Pyramid--STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES Series--suggest that possibly a certain measurement of the step at the upper end of the Grand Gallery might signify something important by the end of 1910. But we hope that we made it clear that we built nothing on that suggestion--that it was merely a suggestion, a guess only, but a pointer that the year 1911 might be looked to with interest. We may say, however, that every year now is bound to be full of interest and activity of thought, both to our readers and the entire civilized world. Surely,
"We are living, we are dwelling,
In a grand and awful time;
In an Age on ages telling,
To be living is sublime!"
Indeed, as respects the date 1914, which we have emphasized, and respecting which we have repeatedly expressed our faith, our conviction--even respecting this date we have never knowingly spoken in infallible terms. We have always admitted that it is a matter of faith and conviction, rather than of absolute knowledge. We invite a careful re-examination of the chapter on chronology, as such a reading will prove helpful, sobering. Therein we point out that if our knowledge were wholly based upon chronology we would be far from certain of the date-- that our faith in it is based largely upon the corroboration, interlacing and intermeshing of various prophecies which seem to prove the reliability of the Bible chronology and of our use of it in connection with this date.
"MEDITATE ON THESE THINGS"
We see no reason for disparaging the date and convictions associated with it. Although only one and a half years remain for the accomplishment of great things in the work, we should not forget that in our wonderful day as much can be accomplished in one year as previously would have been accomplished in five years. We urge, moreover, that a knowledge of the times and seasons connected with the Divine Plan of the Ages is helpful, encouraging and inspiring. Nevertheless, such knowledge is not of itself the Gospel. If every date of the chronology and every prophecy were blotted out, we should still be joyful in the Lord, and should still rejoice in His glorious Gospel, of which Jesus and His great Sacrifice constitutes the center, and our promised participation with Him as His members in the blessing of all the families of the earth constitutes the circumference.
This is the Good Tidings of God's grace in Christ-- whether the completion of the Church shall be accomplished before 1914 or not. Let us preach the Message of God's grace, and let our hearts be stimulated with God's Message through the Prophets, to the effect that the blessing is nigh at hand. Let our moderation be manifest to all, and let the fact that we know only in part and understand only in part help to keep us humble and moderate in word and deed and thought. Thus we shall best serve the interests
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of our Master and His Cause, and be most in harmony with the teachings of His Word.
It is our conviction that the great time of trouble will come upon the world through the great Adversary, Satan, and his fallen host. It will not surprise us to find evidences accumulating that the work of breaking down the human will through hypnotism, etc., is all a part of the great scheme by which shortly, gradually, increasingly, power will be exercised upon the minds of mankind--to excite them to unwisdom and to passion. Such of God's children as shall have learned the lessons of His Word along the lines of moderation of thought, rest of heart in the Lord, patient waiting for His time and way, and assisted by the Vow to careful self inspection and government daily, will be greatly blessed and by this means kept from the snare of the Adversary--the hour of temptation is coming upon all that dwell upon the face of the whole earth.--`Rev. 3:10`.
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SERVICE OF THE BRETHREN A PROPER ZEAL
"The zeal of Thine House hath consumed Me."--`Psa. 69:9`.
THESE WORDS must have seemed extremely poetical, hyperbolic, to those of David's time. David indeed had a zeal for the House of God--for the Tabernacle first, and subsequently for the Temple, which he desired to build, but which the Lord would not permit him to build. David had a real zeal for that House.
We get the key to this prophecy from its application in the New Testament to our Lord. When Jesus had made a scourge of small cords, He drove the money-changers out of the Temple. Then His disciples remembered and probably quoted the passage: "The zeal of Thine House hath eaten Me up." (`John 2:17`.) The Lord's House in that case was the Temple; and our Lord's zeal in cleansing the Temple of all merchandise would be considered by some as very appropriate, and by others as very extreme.
But the still deeper meaning is indicated by the declaration that the Church is His House--the House of God. The Apostles, speaking of the Church, say that we are the Temple of the Holy Spirit. (`I Cor. 6:19`.) Again, it is said that we are builded together as living stones. (`I Pet. 2:4,5`.) So we see that the real House of God for which Jesus had zeal was the House of Sons. The Jews had been a House of Servants under Moses; but Christ was a Son over His own House--the House of Sons--"whose House are we, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end;" for "Faithful is He that calleth you."--`Heb. 3:5,6`; `I Thess. 5:24`.
THE SPIRIT OF CHRIST THE SPIRIT OF SERVICE
Having this view of the House before our minds, we can see in what way Jesus' zeal for the House of God consumed Him--burned Him up. We use the word burn, consume, in the same way that we use the word rust, in the case of iron. And so zeal is that which is warm, aglow, hot. With this view of the Master and His House before our minds--the House that He was interested in--we perceive that His zeal, His energy for them, prompted Him, led Him, to lay down His life--for as many as would become God's House, God's sons, God's people. This zeal for the Lord's House, for the Lord's people, consumed His time and strength in helping them.
During this Gospel Age the Lord invites the Church to be similarly consumed with Him. But the only ones who are yet members of the House of God, or sons of God, are those who are begotten of the Holy Spirit, as the Apostle distinctly tells us. If we then have this Spirit of Christ, it will be the spirit of service. It will be a zeal, a warmth, an energy, prompting us to serve in the Church. It will mean that we will be consumed as the Master was consumed--in the service of His Church, which is His Body.--`Matthew 20:28`; `I John 3:16`.
THE PREPARATION FOR THE DIVINE NATURE
There are sons of God on the Heavenly plane who were never given an opportunity to manifest such a zeal as this. There was no offer made to them to be associated in the reclamation of mankind. This privilege was given to the Logos, the Only Begotten. To Him was given the opportunity to lay down His life--"Who made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men; and being found in fashion as a man, He humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Therefore, God also hath highly exalted Him, and given Him a name which is above every name."--`Phil. 2:7-9`.
Our Lord's zeal has not cost Him His Heavenly home, His Heavenly estate; but, on the contrary, God has highly exalted Him--to a higher position. The statement that He was consumed refers to His earthly life, which He laid down for the world. The Father has given Him a still higher nature than He had before--the Divine nature. And this zeal in being consumed prepared Him for the high reward of the Divine nature.
St. Peter says that the Lord hath "given unto us exceeding great and precious promises, that by these [working in us] we might become partakers of the Divine nature." (`2 Pet. 1:4`.) The Apostle Paul says that if we suffer with Christ, we shall reign with Him; if we be dead with Him, we shall live with Him. (`2 Tim. 2:11,12`.) If we have our earthly natures consumed, then we shall get the Divine nature. "We shall be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye."--`1 Cor. 15:51,52`.
This opportunity, then, of manifesting a fulness of zeal for the service of God, was granted, not to Adam, or to any of the human family, until this Gospel Age. This opportunity will not come to the sons of God in the next Age. The sacrificing then will be at an end; and there will be no more sin, sorrow, pain, sighing, crying or dying!-- `Isaiah 35:10`; `51:11`; `Revelation 21:4`.
* * *
"One more day's work for Jesus,
One less of life for me!
But Heaven is nearer, and Christ is dearer,
Than yesterday to me;
His love and light fill all my soul tonight!
"One more day's work for Jesus!
How glorious is my King!
'Tis joy, not duty, to show His beauty;
My soul mounts on the wing,
At the mere thought how Christ my life has bought!
"One more day's work for Jesus!
How sweet the work has been,
To tell the story, to show the glory,
Where Christ's flock enter in!
How it did shine in this poor heart of mine!
"O blessed work for Jesus!
O rest at Jesus' feet!
There toil seems pleasure, my wants are treasure,
And pain for Him is sweet.
Lord, if I may, I'll serve another day!"
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MOSES, THE GOODLY CHILD
--JULY 6.--`EXODUS 1:22-2:10`.--
"Whoso receiveth one such little child in My name, receiveth Me."--`Matthew 18:5`.
JOSEPH was the Grand Vizier of Egypt for eighty years--dying at the age of one hundred and ten years. Surely his brethren, the Israelites, suffered no oppression during that time. Shortly thereafter, however, another Pharaoh came into power, who "knew not Joseph"--who ignored his services to Egypt and the tentative covenant with the Israelites. This Pharaoh is supposed to have been Rameses II, a hard-hearted, selfish despot.
This Pharaoh perceived that the Israelites were multiplying much more rapidly than were the Egyptians. Therefore he considered them a menace. At first they had been viewed as a protection to Egypt, because the land of Goshen lay to the eastward, and an enemy advancing against Egypt would encounter the Israelites first. Egypt's only antagonist in those days was Assyria. When the Israelites became more numerous than the Egyptians, a new danger threatened; for an invading army might bribe them, and thus the rule of the Pharaohs be overthrown.
To meet this contingency, various expedients were tried. First, an edict compelled the Israelites to perform arduous labors, which it was hoped would undermine their strength--weaken them. On the contrary, however, they seemed to flourish increasingly with every added burden. The next repressive measure was the edict to the Hebrew midwives--that every male child of the Israelites should be strangled at birth. But this command was disregarded, the midwives claiming that they arrived too late. The final resort was the royal edict that the Israelites must drown every new-born male infant. Failure to do this was made a punishable crime.
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It was under these conditions that Moses was born. The account indicates that both his parents were pious, and hence we are not surprised at the statement that he as a babe "was a goodly child"--fair, beautiful. Comparatively few parents seem to realize that where children are otherwise than "goodly"--graceful in feature and character--a responsibility for the defects rests upon them. We do not mean by this that it would be possible that any human pair could bring forth absolutely perfect children. "Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean?"--`Job 14:4`.
What we do mean is that as careful breeding affects the features, form and character of the lower animals, and improves both fruits and flowers, so also it is potent in respect to humanity. Yea, much more so; for while neither the parent nor the state may ignore the choice of comrades in human marriage, nevertheless the married have in their own control the most wonderful power known in the world whereby to influence the character and form of their children before birth, and not to be ignored after their birth--the power of the mind.
Were this law of nature clearly recognized by intelligent, conscientious people, what a change would speedily be effected! We are assuming that such parents would not only desire to bring into the world children beautiful in form, in feature and character, but that they would feel it a crime not to do their very best in these respects.
If every mother realized that during the period of gestation her mental moods were either blessing or cursing her offspring, how persistent she would be in resisting evil moods and tantrums! How carefully she would guard her reading, her companionship, her mental reflections! How faithfully she would put into execution the suggestions of the Apostle respecting whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are noble, whatsoever things are honorable and beautiful--to think on these things, and thus to birth-mark her child after the highest, noblest conceptions of which she might be capable!
And if the father realized his responsibility, how careful he would be to do his full duty! not merely as a father and life-giver, but as a protector and guardian of the mother, assisting her in the most important function of human life and in the time of her greatest need of assistance, according to his ability. The mother, during gestation particularly, would be surrounded by things suggestive of the good, the great, the noble, the pure, the intellectual, the cultured. He would be especially sympathetic, and would endeavor to keep the mother's mind at ease. Even if too poor to provide luxuries--pictures, art, etc.--he could measurably fill the place by conversing with the mother on noble and ennobling themes, or he could read to her. Ah, when civilized peoples shall finally learn that the same care which they exercise in respect to the breeding of their fast horses, fancy dogs, pigeons and swine can be applied still more successfully in their own families, who will doubt the wonderful results?
Josephus, the Jewish historian, says that those who met the infant Moses as he was carried along the stream forgot their business, and stood still to gaze at him. The time is nearing when human perfection of features, form and character will be considered the grandest thing in the whole world. Then the names of the parents of such will be honored on the pages of fame still more than those honored with first prizes for flowers, fruits and dumb animals. It is quite to the point that the parents of Moses are well spoken of in the Old Testament; while in the New Testament we are distinctly told that they were people of faith, and counted in the noble list of Ancient Worthies, who are to share in the "better resurrection" on account of faith.--`Hebrews 11:23`.
CO-OPERATING WITH GOD'S PROVIDENCE
It is entirely probable that the parents of Moses thought how to advance the plan which proved so successful for the saving of his life. They knew of the custom of the Egyptian Princess to resort to a certain secluded spot on the Nile for her bath, which is presumed to have been part of a religious custom. They surmised that so beautiful a baby boy would have a special attraction for her. They may even, as tradition claims, have been guided by a dream to take the course they did. But however we shall account for the matter, we perceive that it was co-operation between the parents and Divine providence which brought the results.
A little basket was woven of bulrushes, which grow abundantly along the banks of the Nile. On the outside it was made water-tight with pitch. The babe was placed therein, and at a proper time was left near the spot visited by the princess. Then conveniently near stood Moses' sister, Miriam, about eight years old, ready to suggest the bringing of a nurse. It is even quite probable that the princess herself perceived the ruse and merely co-operated, believing that the little one might as well have as its caretaker its own mother, and that she might be its patron and benefactress.
Thus in God's providence, notwithstanding the opposition of the king, the wonderful Moses was reared in the royal palace, and in Egypt's schools became "learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians." Thus God's providence
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prepared the suitable person for his great work as the leader of Israel--and more, as the prototype of Messiah who in God's due time will be the Deliverer of all humanity desirous of becoming God's people and willing to be led by Him into the antitypical Land of Promise.
AIDED AND PROTECTED
How much there is of simple, yet wonderful romance in this narrative! Think of the leadings of Divine providence in this case! One day the child Moses was a danger and a menace in the home of his parents. At any moment his presence might be discovered and made known to an Egyptian officer. Then he would be killed, and the home broken up, and possibly the lives of his parents lost for venturing to disobey the royal edict. The next day, through Divine providence, the child is back in the same home, and its own mother is paid by the Egyptian princess for caring for it, and is every way fully protected by royal favor.
We know not at what age the child was considered weaned, but it is assumed to have been when he was four years old. This interesting child at this interesting age was then claimed by the princess as her own son. He was given the name Moses, of which Professor Sayce says: "The Greek form of the Hebrew Mosheh--Moyses-- is derived by Josephus from the Coptic (ancient Egyptian) Mo (water), and uses (saved out of it). In other words, the princess made a pun of the name, as though she had said: 'This is my son, because I brought him forth-- out of the water.'" Truly, we never know when Divine Wisdom is working in human woof into the Divine web or plan. God's people are ever to remember that in all their undertakings He is "working all things according to the counsel of His own will." While using human instrumentalities, God nevertheless respects the human will and merely co-operates with it. And whoever most zealously co-operates with God receives proportionately the larger share of the Divine blessing.
We are not to understand that God's providences use only His saintly people and their families, nor even that He uses only those who are at least nominally His. In the present lesson we see how God made even the wrath of man praise Him and accomplish some of His purposes for the furtherance of His great Plan of the Ages amongst those wholly ignorant of Him--"aliens and strangers from the commonwealth of Israel." The entire household of Pharaoh, as well as the princess, were used of the Lord in respect to the preservation of Moses and his education and preparation for his great work. Surely this simple lesson, received into good and honest hearts, gives us greater faith in God and greater reliance upon His Wisdom and Power to fulfil all the gracious promises which He has made to the Church, to Israel and to the world.
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GOD'S INSTRUMENT IN PREPARATION
--JULY 13.--`EXODUS 2:11-25`.--
"Blessed are the meek: for they shall
inherit the earth."--`Matthew 5:5`.
THE deliberateness of Divine providence often astounds us. Our lives are so brief, our limitations so many, that any plans we may have must be pushed to completion as rapidly as we are able. But not so with the Almighty, who is "from everlasting to everlasting God." He has unlimited time at His disposal, and accordingly is working out His sovereign will with great deliberation. It is a comfort to His people to be assured that He knew the end from the beginning, and is working all things according to the counsel of His own will. Bible Students are being blessed in proportion as they are learning that the Divine will is always a good will--just, wise and loving.
The education of Moses is briefly summed up in the Scriptures in the statement that "he was learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians." Legend tells us something of his schooling in the philosophies of that time, and declares that he was a successful Egyptian general; but it is for us to follow the Bible account. The time was nearing when God intended to bring the Israelites out of Egypt into the land which He had promised Abraham should be theirs--a pictorial illustration of the still more
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wonderful deliverance by the greater than Moses, which is now nearing.
God's providences may be noted in respect to the experiences of Moses, who is credited by the Lord with having been "the meekest man in all the earth." God wanted a meek man for the important position which He intended Moses to fill. And the lessons and experiences given to Moses helped to make him meek. Who cannot see that, if he had been proud and arrogant, he would have been unfit for the duties and responsibilities which devolved upon him as the leader of his people out of Egypt to the borders of Canaan? Perhaps no man in the world had a more difficult task than that represented in those forty years of Moses' experience. We may be sure that he was prepared for the ordeal only by the experiences of the eighty years of his life which preceded the Exodus.
The adopted son of the princess of Egypt, Moses must have been a court favorite, and in danger of cultivating pride and arrogance. As an offset to this, he had continually before him the fact that his features were Jewish, and that thus every one had knowledge of his identity with the despised and oppressed people. The tendency of this would naturally be toward one of two courses: Either he would seek to ignore the Hebrews and to become more and more identified with the Egyptians, or he would exercise faith in the special promises of which his people were heirs as children of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
This was perhaps his first test. Would he prove loyal to God and to those Divine promises relating to the future? Would his faith be equal to the task of casting in his lot with the enslaved and oppressed people, and thus losing caste with Pharaoh, his family and all the Egyptians of influence? St. Paul notes that Moses was a victor in respect to these matters. He chose rather to suffer affliction with the people of God than to enjoy the riches and honors which might have been his as an adopted member of the royal family. (`Hebrews 11:24-26`.) We may well surmise that if he had taken side with the Egyptians, he might even have become the reigning Pharaoh.
To Moses the Promise which God made to Abraham, and repeated to Isaac and to Jacob, and which still waits its fulfilment, was more to be desired than all the riches and honors of earth. Moses stood well this test in respect to his faith and loyalty. He would be on God's side at any cost! Similarly, there have always been tests, both to the Natural Israelites and to the Spiritual Israelites, and these tests are still applied in our day. The world
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holds out inducements to the Jew to abandon his covenant relationship with God, as it also holds out inducements to the Spiritual Israelite to abandon his spiritual relationship with God.
It is still true that the friendship of the world means enmity with God, and the friendship with God means the enmity of the world, so widely different and opposed is the Kingdom of Darkness to the Kingdom of Light and everything related thereto. It is still as true today as in Moses' time that "Whosoever will live godly [in this present time] shall suffer persecution." But it shall not always be so. A great change is impending. Those who love righteousness will be exalted, blessed, while those who love sin will be restrained and punished.
MOSES DISCOURAGED, HEARTBROKEN
Trusting in the Lord's Promise, Moses believed that the time had come for the deliverance of the Israelites from their bondage. He knew well of his miraculous preservation, and had the assurance of God's Promise that this signified that God had a special work for him to do. He was ready and anxious to begin that work. He knew not of his own unreadiness. Nothing was further from his thought than that he would require forty years more of special schooling. Supposing that the time had come to strike for liberty, he was on the alert. He would inspire his people with confidence in him. They should know that although he was educated in the court of Pharaoh, his sympathies were with them, and that he could be relied upon as their leader.
An occasion to show his zeal for his brethren came when he saw an Egyptian abusing one of them unjustly. He threw himself into the conflict. The Egyptian was killed in the scuffle. The Israelite was delivered. Moses perceived that none of the Egyptians knew of the matter, so he buried the victim in the sand. He doubted not that his brethren would quietly pass the word along that he was their friend and defender, and that thus they would look to him with confidence as their leader, when God's providence would open the door for them to leave Egypt. But all these dreams faded when, on the following day, he perceived that there was no such loyalty among his brethren as he had expected, and that instead of being his followers they were ready to deliver him to the Egyptian authorities for having rendered assistance to one of their race.
Thoroughly discouraged and fearing for his life, Moses fled to the wilderness of Midian. It looked as though all of his loyalty and all of his forty years of education and development had gone to waste. He had supposed that he was being prepared to be the captain of the Lord's host and to lead it forth. In one hour all of his hopes were dashed and he was a fugitive, fearing to show his face in the palace amongst the Egyptians or amongst those of his own race. "A wasted life," was undoubtedly his comment--forty years spent in cherishing hopes and ambitions never to be realized.
MOSES, JETHRO'S SHEPHERD
As the fugitive sat upon the casing of a well, shepherds brought their flocks to it for water. Amongst the sheep-tenders were Jethro's daughters, and opposing them some ungallant shepherds, who not only did not help, but hindered them. Moses, full of the instinct of justice, not only took their part, but helped by drawing water for their flocks, and incidentally walked with them toward their home. Jethro was appreciative of the stranger, who did not at the time disclose his identity. He who was learned in all the learning of the Egyptians, and who had been one of the generals of Egypt, was now thoroughly crestfallen, meek, tractable, teachable.
Moses married one of Jethro's daughters, and continued to be a humble shepherd for forty years. He did not at the time understand the Lord's providence in his affairs, but he was all those years learning a most important lesson of meekness, of full submission to the Divine will. When the lesson had been learned, God's time had come to put His thus doubly educated servant into a most important place, for which he would have never been qualified without just such experiences.
God's dealings with Moses illustrate the general principles of His dealing with all those of whom He would make special servants prepared for special services. Our Lord Jesus in the Heavenly courts testified His loyalty and fidelity to the Almighty. As a means toward his further exaltation the opportunity was given Him of becoming the Savior of mankind, and thus of carrying out the Divine Program. He gladly responded. "Although He was a Son, yet learned He obedience by the things which He suffered." (`Hebrews 5:8`.) And the Apostle declares that because of this demonstration of His full submission to the Father's will "unto death, even the death of the cross," therefore God highly exalted Him in His resurrection, not only as high as He was before, but higher--"far above angels, principalities and powers, and every name that is named."--`Philippians 2:9-11`; `Ephesians 1:20-23`; `I Peter 3:22`.
Similarly, God during this Gospel Age is calling out of the world a saintly company, a Little Flock, to be associated with Jesus in His great work of the future, the blessing of all the families of the earth, as promised by God to Abraham, saying, "In thy Seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed." Those responsive to this special invitation are required to demonstrate their loyalty to God, "through evil report and through good report-- as deceivers and yet true." At times these saintly ones have even been branded, as was St. Paul, "the filth of the world and the offscouring of all things."--`I Corinthians 4:13`; `2 Corinthians 6:8`.
These insults came frequently from poor, blinded slaves of sin, and at other times, the Bible says, from those who are "willingly ignorant." But, nevertheless, all these sons of God whom He is now receiving as members of the Royal Priesthood to be members of the Bride class, must be tested in respect to their humility--their submissiveness to the Divine will. Only those who learn this lesson and become copies of God's dear Son (`Romans 8:29`), will be "meet for the inheritance of the saints in light"--prepared for the glory, honor, immortality, and the Divine nature which God has promised to His faithful, elect Church.
* * *
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"In pastures green? Not always; sometimes He
Who knoweth best in kindness leadeth me
In weary ways, where heavy shadows be.
Out of the sunshine, warm and soft and bright,
Out of the sunshine into darkest night;
I oft would faint with terror and with fright,
Only for this--I know He holds my hand;
So, whether in the green or desert land,
I trust, although I may not understand.
"And by still waters? No, not always so;
Ofttimes the heavy tempests round me blow,
And o'er my soul the waves and billows go.
But when the storm beats loudest, and I cry
Aloud for help, the Master standeth by,
And whispers to my soul, 'Lo, it is I!'
Above the tempest wild I hear Him say,
'Beyond this darkness lies the perfect day;
In every path of thine I lead the way.'"
LAST year, difficulty was experienced because our Convention gathering at Washington was too large and unwieldy. This year we are seeking to avoid such an experience by increasing the number of Conventions and scattering them. Not only are moderate-sized Conventions found more enjoyable and more edifying, but additionally they are much less expensive and permit, therefore, a larger attendance--many finding it possible to go a short distance who cannot well afford the time and expense of a long journey. It is quite proper that these matters should be taken into consideration by you in making your arrangements for Convention privileges and blessings, and also by the Society in making the arrangements for such Conventions. This is but exercising the spirit of a sound mind.
In all of the Conventions, practically the same average of daily expense will be incurred; namely, from $1.25 a day and upward. The $1.25 rate will secure reasonable, comfortable entertainment, but, of course, not a separate room, and only plain, wholesome food. If in some instances it should be possible to do better than this, be assured that we will give you all the advantage possible. The Society merely acts for you in making the arrangements. And it is much better that we make the arrangements and assignments in advance.
When a big crowd begins to arrive, it is quite a temptation to human nature to raise the price. It is all right for those who expect to pay $2.50 to $5.00 per day at a hotel to come without any previous arrangement, if they choose; but it makes trouble for everybody if those who want cheap accommodations come to the Convention place without any arrangements, and begin to bid for places we have already secured and have assigned to others. None of the Lord's children willingly do this, and yet it is done nearly every year. We ask all to help us this year by co-operating with the Society and not taking up, at a higher price, lodgings, etc., which we have already secured to others. With this fair notice, any who do this this year will be asked to vacate.
HOW TO SECURE ACCOMMODATIONS
In due time a representative of the Society will be sent to each Convention point to arrange for all the available and desirable quarters, and to make the assignments according to your requests and to send you a memorandum of the locality assigned to you, so that you may arrive, knowing just where you are going, and so that the entertainer will know just who is coming. Be assured that the representative will follow your instructions as far as possible, and with care.
These representatives will be addressed "Laymens Home Missionary Movement," and addresses will be given in these columns (page 2) in due time--two to three weeks in advance of each Convention.
RAILWAY RATES, NAMES OF SPEAKERS, ETC.
We are getting out programs giving the names of speakers, and the railway rates in connection with each Convention. When you decide which Convention you will attend, please write for the program, which will be sent free.
Below find a complete list of the Conventions. Brother Russell hopes to attend them all, but he will probably be unable to give more than two days at each.
Pertle Springs (Warrensburg), Mo......June 1- 8. Hot Springs, Ark...................... " 1- 8. Los Angeles, Cal...................... " 11-15. San Francisco, Cal.................... " 14-16. Madison, Wis.......................... " 29-July 6. Springfield, Mass.....................July 13-20. Asheville, N. C....................... " 20-27. Toronto, Can.......................... " 20-27. London, England.......................Aug. 1- 4. Glasgow, Scotland..................... " 23-24.
We have arranged to have about fifteen public speakers of ability at each of these Conventions. Besides these, there will be a goodly number of considerable ability to assist in symposiums.
For the most part, we are leaving the evenings without special appointments on the program. This will give a better opportunity for rest and meditation on the things heard in the earlier part of the day, and for fellowship together in spiritual things. Chart Talks, etc., will be given by some public speakers at homes where the friends are being entertained, if there be special requests therefor.
Come praying that you may obtain a blessing and also that your attendance may prove profitable, helpful, to others. All who so come, we feel sure will be blessed. Those whose circumstances or conditions will not permit their attendance may surely join with us in spirit, remembering us in prayer, and they will be remembered in the prayers of the Conventioners; for the family of God is one in hope, interest and aims.
We urge none to attend the Conventions. If, in the providence of God, your affairs are not favorable, remember that He is able to overrule in this and in all things for your good. The lesson of submission learned in staying at home may be just as important a one for you as any blessing which you could secure by attending. Nevertheless, all who love the Lord, who are trusting in the precious blood of Jesus and who have made a full consecration of their lives in the Divine service will be cordially welcome.
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INTERESTING ITEMS AND LETTERS
J. PIERPONT MORGAN'S WILL
No doubt many, as well as the Editor, were surprised to read the opening paragraph of Mr. Morgan's will, as reported in the public press, as follows:
"I commit my soul into the hands of my Savior, in full confidence that, having redeemed it and washed it in His most precious blood. He will present it faultless before the Throne of my Heavenly Father, and I entreat my children to maintain and defend at all hazards and at any cost of personal sacrifice, the blessed doctrine of the complete atonement for sin through the blood of Jesus Christ, once offered and through that alone."
Many know of a prominent part taken by this gentlemen in the affairs of the Episcopal Church. The newspapers also informed the world of the fact that Mr. Morgan more or less recognized the Pope. Many were inclined to think of his church membership and church attendance as merely formalism--"Churchianity."
Now it appears that, regardless of whether or not Mr. Morgan was a fully consecrated saint of God, he at least trusted in the Savior. Moreover, the faith professed in the above quotation from his will intimates a much clearer appreciation of the Atonement Work of Christ than the majority of ministers of various denominations would be ready to acknowledge.
Evidently Mr. Morgan was not a Higher Critic, nor in sympathy with them; for Higher Critics cannot and do not receive the Bible teaching respecting the value of the death of Christ as the Atonement Price for the sins of mankind.
Evidently, also, Mr. Morgan was not a believer in the doctrine of Evolution; for that doctrine holds that instead of having original sin, which needs to be canceled before the
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sinner can have fellowship with God, the contrary is true. Evolutionists hold that man started as second cousin to the monkey, too unintelligent to be guilty of any transgression, and that as a race man has been progressing upward, upward, and needs only to be let alone in order to fully evolute into a god--that is to say, the generations of evoluted men millions of years in the future will be gods. But respecting man present and past, Evolution makes no claim, seeing only a destructive process in operation, and trusting that it is working out the preservation and development of the best of the species.
The great financier's will, viewed from this standpoint, is meaningful. It implies that, notwithstanding vast financial enterprises and the social round of which he was more or less the center, he, nevertheless, caught the thought that he was a sinner; that he needed a Savior; that Jesus was that Savior sent of God; and that through His blood, His death, and through it alone, can come remission of sins and deliverance from the penalty of sin--corruption, death--by a resurrection.
GOD'S ESTIMATION DIFFERENT FROM THE WORLD'S
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:--
I request your opinion upon the correctness of a thought expressed in a friendly publication in the following language:
"When the holy Jesus died, it was as a victim of Sin, which, for the moment, seemed to have the victory. Indeed, He could not have died, had sin not been imputed to Him; for all the promises of health, prosperity and life which were by the Law were His. The Law said, 'The man which doeth these things shall live by them.' (`Rom. 10:5`.) Thus came a necessity for our Lord to be accounted a sinner, in order that He might die for the people. For this reason we do not see that it is possible for the members of the Church to die unless, like Him, they are accounted sinners."
I am well aware that the Lord Jesus would not have died (the publication says, "could not have died") if there had been no sin to be atoned for. But if our Lord died as above suggested, it seems to me that His death must have been a penal death and not a sacrificial one. Could He die both a penal and a sacrificial death? It seems not so to me. If the Lord Jesus died a penal death, it would appear to me that He could have no life-rights left to His credit to bestow upon either the Church or the world....
I anxiously await your reply, for if the foregoing expression is correct I have seriously misunderstood both the Scriptures and the Dawns.
Your loving brother in our dear Redeemer,
W. W. M.--Va.
THE EDITOR'S REPLY
DEAR BROTHER M__________:--
I am glad to note your careful discrimination in your Scripture studies. This is one lesson that all the dear friends in the Truth need to learn--not to accept implicitly everything that they read, nor everything that even a regular Pilgrim may express. The same principle, of course, holds true with respect to our own presentations, oral and printed. All that we receive as spiritual food should be thoroughly masticated before assimilation. We have great confidence in all of the dear brethren engaged in the Pilgrim service; otherwise they would not thus represent the Society. However, we must not be held responsible for their every expression. We believe them to be thoroughly well-intentioned, but perfection will be reached only beyond the veil. We come now to your question.
We cannot quite endorse the phraseology of the statement which you quote. All of the Church die as the victims of sin in the sense that Sin and Death are personified in the Scriptures. Sin has actuated all those who oppose the Truth and persecute the Lord and His consecrated footstep followers.
But we cannot agree to the thought that our Lord's death was a penal one. One Scripture might be considered as supporting this thought, namely, the words, "He hath made Him to be sin for us, who knew no sin." (`2 Cor. 5:21`.) But this Scripture we understand to signify that our Lord who knew no sin, was made a Sin-Offering on our behalf. We remember also the Scripture which declares that "As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up." (`John 3:14`.) The serpent, indeed, is the symbol for Sin. But we can think of only one way that our Lord was viewed as a serpent--in the sense that He underwent all the experiences which a sinner could have been required to undergo. Thus He suffered as a sinner and for the sinner the same penalty that might be required of any sinner. But while He was a malefactor, a sinner, etc., in the eyes of men, He was the reverse of all this in the eyes of His true followers and in the Father's sight.
What Jesus did He plainly stated--He laid down, or surrendered, His life, because thus He could best serve the Father's purposes. He did not give away His life. Nor did He die under condemnation as a sinner. He did not forfeit His life. Nor did the Jews or Roman soldiers take His life away from Him contrary to His permission. He laid it down of Himself. Had He died a sinner in God's sight, with sin imputed to Him by the Father, He would have had nothing to give for the redemption of Adam and his race--He would have been unable to become their Regenerator in the Times of Restitution.
We submit that the only proper view of the Lord's death is that it was a manifestation of His absolute obedience to the Father's will. That extreme of obedience was rewarded with the Divine nature and glorious exaltation in His resurrection. The risen, glorious Redeemer made no satisfaction of Justice and paid nothing over on behalf of anybody until after He ascended up on High. Then He appropriated of His merit to all who, during this Age, would accept the Father's call and drawing to become members of Christ's Body. To each of these He has imputed enough of His own merit to make good the deficiencies of their flesh, in order that they, like Himself, might present to God sacrifices holy and acceptable, and thereupon be begotten to the spirit nature.
Later on, our Lord's human life, unforfeited and not yet given away, will be given away on behalf of Israel and the world, canceling "the sins of all the people" and securing for Himself the Mediatorial Throne of the Millennial Age, for the blessing of Israel, through its Mediator, and all the families of the earth through Israel, and under Israel's New Law Covenant....
I note your second question, relative to our statement in THE WATCH TOWER of March 1, 1910, page 88, second column --where we set forth that Satan's "little season" will be after Messiah shall have delivered up the Kingdom to the Father. It is true that some years ago we were not so clear on this point as now--less positive. The great Mediator will indeed "destroy from amongst the people" all who will not obey Him, throughout the Millennial Age; so that at the transfer of His Kingdom and the vacating of His Mediatorship, the world of mankind will be perfect. The Mediator will step from between God and man, and Divine tests will be applied, to prove, to demonstrate, the heart-faithful. The sentence upon the disloyal is: "There will come fire from God out of Heaven and destroy them." This indicates a testing and punishing by Divine Justice. This would not be possible so long as the Mediatorial Kingdom held sway. However, we understand that our Lord will be the Father's Representative in connection with that exhibition of Divine Justice which will follow His Mediatorship, just as He was the Father's Representative and Agent before He came into the world to be our Redeemer.
The trial will follow the thousand years of Christ's reign, at the conclusion of which He will deliver up the Kingdom to God, even the Father. Hence the loosing of Satan and the testing of the perfected race will be the result of their being turned over into the hands of absolute Justice, and in contradistinction to their having been in the hands of Mercy through the Mediator for a thousand years. That judgment, or test, therefore, will be of the Father, of Justice--a similar test to that which originally came upon Father Adam.
However, it is written that all things are of the Father
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and by the Son. We are to understand that the glorious Son of God will be the Father's active Agent in respect to that Judgment, as well as in all other matters. But it will be the Father's Judgment, or the judgment of Justice, for the Son's Mediatorial Kingdom will have ended.
REPORT OF THE GLASGOW CLASS I.B.S.A.
DEARLY BELOVED PASTOR:--
We have just held our annual business meeting, and we know you will unite with us in praising God for all His lovingkindness and tender mercies throughout 1912 in permitting us to have the privilege of serving in the Harvest Work. The following are a few of the items reported on:
There are now more Departments, and more workers in these Departments, than ever before; and what is more encouraging, there is more activity and energy displayed than at any previous time. Doubtless all taking part are realizing the shortness of the time and are doing with their might what their hands find to do.
There are now nine Elders and twenty-three Deacons.
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the work being divided into nineteen Departments. A schedule of these divisions and appointments has been printed this session and a copy is enclosed herewith.
We have thirty regular Church meetings each week, besides a number of occasional meetings from time to time, including a monthly Question Meeting, Quarterly Harvest Work Meeting, meetings to report progress, and extra meetings when Pilgrims visit us. The Elders hold a monthly business meeting, and all the elected brethren meet every Saturday to consider and advise on any matter coming forward.
The printed syllabus enclosed includes all the regular Church meetings. These syllabuses are not only distributed among the brethren, but are also given to any interested who ask for them.
Our meetings are as follows:
(1) Seven Sunday morning meetings in different districts; aggregate attendance about 253. Two Sunday morning meetings outside boundaries, for which chairmen are provided from Glasgow; attendance about 40.
(2) A united meeting on Sunday evenings, well advertised, for the Church and all interested; attendance varying from 400 to 700.
(3) Eleven Wednesday evening meetings in homes of the brethren; aggregate attendance, 146.
(4) Eight Berean Studies on Fridays, and one on Sunday afternoon; total number of students, about 180.
(5) One week-night united Church meeting on Monday evenings, for the study of "Tabernacle Shadows"; average attendance, about 90.
Monthly Question Meetings are held about the last Saturday of the month, and questions are answered by the Elder brethren (who take the meeting in turn), or by a Pilgrim, when the Question Meeting fits in with his visit.
A "Harvest Work Meeting" is held quarterly, on a Sunday afternoon, to hear and give experiences, and also to exhort one another, in the different branches of the work; average attendance, about 150.
Visitation.--There are now 50 visitors (9 brothers and 41 sisters) engaged in this work. It is intended that the visits should be monthly, and in case of sickness or distress oftener.
The Volunteer Work is now divided into two sections; viz., extended Glasgow (being designated, "The Inner Circle"), and the 30 miles radius around Glasgow (being called "The Outer Circle"). The number of Peoples Pulpits distributed from January 1 to December 31, 1912, is 510,230 for regular volunteer work, including special distribution in July; and the number of Everybodys Paper, for Class Extension work, is 291,600, making a total of 801,830. About 200 Volunteers take part in this work.
Occasional Colporteuring.--Thirty-six brethren are taking part in this branch, compared with twenty last year--an increase of sixteen. The number of books sold is close to 1,000.
Besides these thirty-six, there are sixteen sisters and one brother from the Glasgow Church giving all their time to this work, and several other brethren, who are in readiness for another branch of the work, are devoting a good deal of time to colporteuring at present.
Book-loaning.--Thirty-one brethren are taking part in this Department. At present there are 225 books in the work. Each one has 6 books, but some wish 12. This work seems to be opening up and we anticipate more will be done in this way.
Local Pilgrim Service.--Twelve Churches are served, monthly visits being paid on request.
Class Extension.--This work has increased rapidly during the past year. There have been 17 series held, which comprises 15 series of 6 meetings, one of 3 meetings, one of 2 meetings; and there have also been three single meetings; total number of meetings 98. Tracts distributed, 291,600; attendance averaging one person per 100 tracts distributed. The attention at all the meetings has been most marked.
New classes have been formed in four places and existing classes strengthened in three places.
The total expenditure has been approximately L190 ($950), averaging barely L2 ($10) per single meeting.
Convention.--The outstanding feature of the past year was the General Scotch Convention, held July 25-28, and the presence of you, our dear Pastor, with us for three whole days. The number attending the Convention ranged from 500 to 800.
We appreciated very much, and benefited greatly by, your presence with us at that time. The Convention finished with a Love Feast in the Convention Hall, and a large public meeting in St. Andrews' Grand Hall, filled to overflowing, the attendance being about 5,000 and many being turned away.
Baptisms at Glasgow, during 1912, numbered 81, and the number at the Memorial Supper in March was 363.
At the close of the Business Meeting it was unanimously decided to send you a message of love, with the following texts:
"The Lord bless thee and keep thee; the Lord make His face shine upon thee and be gracious unto thee; the Lord lift up His countenance upon thee and give thee peace."-- `Num. 6:24-26`.
"Wherefore, also, we pray always for you, that our God would count you worthy of this calling and fulfil all the good pleasure of His goodness and the work of faith with power; that the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you, and you in Him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ."--`2 Thess. 1:11,12`.
And we wish to say how much we appreciate your loving interest in us, and all the help we receive from you through THE WATCH TOWER and through the many visits from Pilgrim brethren who come to us from time to time. We thank you and our Heavenly Father for all these blessings, and we would just like to say how much we are longing to see your face and to hear your voice again. Come soon!
With much Christian love,
GILBERT MACKENZIE, Secretary.
"IT SATISFIES MY LONGINGS"
DEAR PASTOR RUSSELL:--
I came to the Lord in 1886, and had been a worker in the vineyard for over sixteen years, but on account of the inconsistency of Christian teachings, I, ten years ago, went out to seek the Truth somewhere else, having lost faith in Christianity. For ten long, weary years I roamed through the world. Theosophy, the Vedas, the Ancient Mysteries, Agnosticism, and all else have been the food of my soul. Finally, last Easter morning, I decided that Christianity, with all its faults and shortcomings, held out more hope for the weary than all the above mentioned husks together. True, I found some truths in all, but nothing, nothing to be compared with the Truth that is accessible even to the weakest Christian. Well, I found my way back--the old, old story of the prodigal's return--an Easter morning in my soul.
Since then one of your tracts came into my hands, and I joyfully accepted the truths I found. I am now studying the SCRIPTURE STUDIES; I love them.
I never thought that I would ever be able to believe in the miracles recorded in the Bible. But I do now. I now look on the laws of nature merely as the habits of God, and as I would set aside a habit whenever I thought expedient for a certain purpose, He would set a settled habit aside for the time being.
As I said above, I am studying the SCRIPTURE STUDIES. I would also be pleased to subscribe to the WATCH TOWER, if your will be good enough to enter my name as a subscriber.
Thanking you again for your kindness, I am
Yours in Christ,
ALEX. P. RIEDEL.--N.Y.
THE LIGHT IN INDIA
MY DEAR PASTOR RUSSELL:--
I want to thank you for sample copy of THE WATCH TOWER, and also for Report on Foreign Mission Work, received a few months ago, and very much appreciated.
I would like to have THE WATCH TOWER sent regularly, beginning with January 1913, to above address. I will send subscription price in due course.
I am much interested in prophetic Bible Studies, and am looking for the Lord's speedy return. I have been working as
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a missionary in China for many years, and am now on furlough, most of which will be spent in Travancore, India. May I ask an interest in your prayers for future guidance?
With thanks in anticipation, believe me to remain,
Yours very sincerely.__________.--Travancore, India.
REJOICING IN TRIBULATION
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:--
Greeting in His name! Your good and encouraging letter of 17th inst. received and very much appreciated.
While we suffered much loss of goods, we did, and still do, and intend always to cling closely to `Rom. 8:28`. Yes, we were in perfect peace. The flood of water did not reach our second floor by 18 inches; and though our neighbors left their homes and went to the hills, we stayed where we were (upstairs) seven days and eight nights, having plenty to eat and
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drink (thanks to your advice as to food for time of trouble). We went to bed every night and slept soundly.
While some of those of the world noted and commented on our peace, others said it was wicked to take things so calmly and serenely while they (the world) were so worried and so many were losing their goods.
Your brother and sister by His grace,
MR. AND MRS. J. L. DILLI.--Ohio.
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BEREAN LESSONS AND TESTIMONY MEETINGS
WE HAVE REQUESTED the traveling Pilgrims to do what they can to assist the different Classes with whom they meet to a proper appreciation of the great value of Berean Study Classes and Testimony Meetings. While we have advised these and described their successful operation and method in SCRIPTURE STUDIES, Vol. VI., some of the dear friends seem not to fully appreciate them. We believe this is because they have never seen them in proper operation. With good Berean Study Classes and Testimony Meetings rightly conducted, the I.B.S.A. Classes will surely be prosperous in spiritual things--whether they have any preaching or not.
The Pilgrim Brethren are selected with care, and with the thought that they are well rounded out in Christian experience and along the lines of the Berean Studies and in leading Testimony Meetings. It is our thought, therefore, that if a Pilgrim visits a place where such meetings are not held, he cannot do the friends a better service than to give them a sample of how such meetings should be conducted to be interesting and profitable--along the lines indicated in Vol. VI.
In places where such meetings are already in vogue, and are successful and well attended by the interested, sample meetings by the Pilgrims would not be so necessary. Nevertheless, we have suggested to them that where they serve a class more than one evening, and one of those is the regular Testimony Meeting evening, it will be well for them to conduct the Testimony Meeting along the lines of Vol. VI., closing in an hour, and then taking an extra half-hour for a heart-to-heart talk along the lines which the time, place and circumstances may suggest to them as most helpful to the Class. We have urged all the dear Brethren who do public speaking to confine their discourse to sixty minutes--and surely not to exceed seventy minutes --and that if for any reason they speak longer than this, they will kindly explain to us the particular reasons therefor.
This is not done to hamper the brethren, but because uniformly long discourses are too strenuous for the public, and therefore apt to hinder the Cause we all wish to serve. Exceptions to this are made in the case of the two or three brethren who are generally used to open a series of meetings; for a special endeavor is then made to bring out an audience and a little extra time may be necessary, and in the case of especially interesting speakers, a long discourse may be wise. The average speaker, however, can accomplish more good in an hour than in two hours.
In these and in all suggestions and regulations, dear friends, be assured that our aim, object, motive, is the Lord's glory and the blessing of His people.
BEREAN QUESTIONS IN SCRIPTURE STUDIES
Series VI., Study XV.
THE FOES AND BESETMENTS OF THE NEW CREATION
Read p. 603, par. 1, to p. 605, par. 2.
(7) What is "fanaticism," and how should it be avoided? and what is absolutely essential in order to properly apply the principles of righteousness to our daily lives? P. 603, par. 1.
(8) What thought should constantly be kept in mind by the New Creature? And what is the only restriction we should recognize along this line? P. 603, par. 2.
THE WORLD AS AN ENEMY OF THE NEW CREATION
(9) Why is the spirit of the world in general opposed to the standard of the New Creation? P. 604, par. 1, 2.
(10) Why is the world one of the chief enemies of the New Creation, and why is a collision unavoidable? P. 604, par. 3.
(11) Explain why even the noblest aims and objects of the world in general are contrary to the standards of the New Creation. P. 605, par. 1.
(12) With what spirit should we meet the hatred and opposition of the world? P. 605, par. 2.
Read p. 606, par. 1, 2, to p. 611, par. 1.
(13) Explain the Scriptural injunction, "Love not the world," etc. (`1 John 2:15`.) P. 606, par. 1, 2.
(14) Has the Lord set for us the herculean task of reforming the world? and would it be proper for us to make a business of denouncing the present order of things? P. 607, par. 1, 2.
(15) What Scriptural examples in this respect may we well follow? P. 607, par. 3.
(16) What is the special work for the "Royal Priesthood" at the present time? P. 608, par. 1, 2.
THE GREAT ADVERSARY, SATAN
(17) Quote Scriptural proofs of the personality of Satan. Pp. 609 to 611.
(18) What Scriptural evidence that Satan is not only the enemy of the Church but also of all mankind? P. 611, par. 1.
Read p. 611, par. 2, to p. 614, par. 1.
(19) Explain how Satan's opposition to the New Creature differs from that of the world and of our own flesh. P. 611, par. 2.
HE WAS A LIAR AND A MURDERER FROM THE BEGINNING
(20) What Scripture declares that Satan began the rebellion against God, and led our first parents into sin and death? P. 612, par. 1, first fourteen lines.
(21) Give Scriptural proof that Satan was created perfect and upright. P. 612, par. 1, last part.
(22) How has God created all His intelligent creatures so that being perfect does not insure remaining perfect? P. 612, par. 2.
(23) Are there different orders and positions among the angelic ranks? And how did the angels probably regard the creation of man? P. 613, par. 1.
(24) What was the probable reasoning of Satan with respect to our first parents? P. 613, par. 2; P. 614, par. 1.
Read p. 614, par. 2, to p. 619, par. 1.
(25) How may Satan have suggested to Eve's mind the thought of injustice on Jehovah's part? P. 614, par. 2; P. 615, par. 1.
(26) What was possibly Satan's disappointment over the result of his deception? And why was Adam's responsibility greater than Eve's? P. 615, par. 2.
(27) Did the results of Satan's first lie tend toward his reformation? P. 616, par. 1.
(28) What is the supreme object of all Satan's efforts? P. 616, par. 2.
(29) Since the Truth is much more reasonable than Error, why has it not prevailed, and what religious system has been Satan's masterpiece and worthy representative? P. 617, par. 1.
(30) Show how `Isaiah 14:12-17` applies to Satan and his chief representative system. P. 618, par. 1, 2.
(31) What is the similarity between literal and symbolic Babylon? And what will be their doom, as well as that of Satan? P. 619, par. 1.