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    July 2, 1896

    “Latin Services” The Present Truth, 12, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    Latin Services .-A contributor to the Catholic Times is greatly dissatisfied with the incorrect and indistinct pronunciation of the Latin portions of the service as heard in our Roman Catholic churches. Among others things, he says:-PTUK July 2, 1896, page 419.1

    Apparently the clergy and choir take it for granted that nobody in the congregation understands Latin, so that it does not matter in how mumbling and slovenly a manner the words are spoken. Even in such a centre of classic study as Oxford I found it quite impossible to follow the Latin prayers and hymns, although, seeing that the very object of employing this language is that worshippers of all nations may understand it, there is a special reason for enunciating it with particular distinctness.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 419.2

    The plea for accurate scholarship elsewhere made in the communication is something with which all will sympathise, but who can avoid smiling at the innocence with which the claim is indirectly made that the object of employing Latin in the Roman Catholic ritual is that “worshippers of all nations may understand.” In order that all may understand they use a tongue that not one in a hundred in the congregation can understand.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 419.3

    “Liberty a Product of the Gospel” The Present Truth, 12, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    Civil liberty is a product of the Gospel. To demand complete freedom for himself is natural to every man; but to deny to all others the same liberty which he so earnestly desires for himself is just as natural. To the unregenerate man liberty means freedom from authoritative control coupled with the possession of despotic power over all other men.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 419.4

    Freedom to enslave, liberty to exercise the right of might, the gospel of force,-the possession of this only satisfies him. What freedom really is-actual liberty-is alone comprehended by the spiritual man. Before the understanding of this paradox, of freedom through subjection, can enter the mind of man, he must first have talked with God, as did Nicodemus; and, being taught of the Lord, have learned the mystery of regeneration.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 419.5

    If there have been those who unreservedly espoused the cause of civil liberty and human rights, pure and simple, and yet seemed to antagonise Christianity, it was because they unconsciously followed in the steps of Christ. They but needed some one, like another Paul to the Athenians, to preach to them the God whom they ignorantly worshipped. It was not Christianity which they antagonised but the power and authority of a false Christianity which they saw exemplified in the minds, hearts, and lives of their contemporaries. Who will say that the Athenian who knelt at the altar of the unknown god was not nearer to the kingdom of God than the Pharisee, the dust of whose city Paul had shaken from his feet?PTUK July 2, 1896, page 419.6

    From the desire for liberty to its possession is an upward step, but this is the pinnacle. There is but one step from the possession of liberty to the desire for power; this is a downward step. Through ambition the angels fell; by it the covering cherub lost his high estate; how, then, could feeble humanity, whatever its Christian profession, expect to gain by that through which heavenly power was lost? When once the unholy lust for power has entered the heart of the church, Satanic poison has begun its work and that is a fallen church, no less than is Lucifer a fallen angel. When the fallen angel and the fallen church are animated by the same motives,-ambition for power,-they will be kindred spirits, and will work the same works.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 419.7

    Lucifer sought supreme authority, eternal in the heavens. When the spirit of worldly ambition has entered a church it seeks temporal authority supreme on earth. This is but the natural course for human weakness to take, when it has forgotten to subject itself in child-like humility to Divine leading. When the fallen church and the fallen angel have purposes which complement each other and tend to the same end, they become natural allies. But when the church forsakes its Divine Master, it subjects itself to Satan’s leadership, and becomes, with all its power and intelligence, the dupe and the tool of supernatural subtlety. The two will then work together for the same ends,-the supremacy of self, and the subjugation of all else, and will have a common purpose,-to destroy the product of the Gospel, liberty, civil and religious. When a church does this it becomes an ecclesiasticism and no longer the Church of God.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 420.1

    “Silent Forces” The Present Truth, 12, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    How silent are the forces of nature! The earth, the planets, the sun, all the heavenly bodies swing in their rapid courses through space and make no sound. Gravity, attraction, repulsion, cohesion, the various forces which hold the worlds in their traces, all perform their labours, so infinitely gigantic, in silence. The rays of light, from sun and stars, that come to us through illimitable spaces, from distances without end, with the speed of thought, fall upon the earth more gently than the mother’s morning kiss upon her sleeping babe. Yet as the tender kiss of love may warm the heart and rouse it to great thoughts and heroic deeds of lifelong endeavour, so, light exerts upon the earth that marvellous power which causes all nature to spring into life, and develop into wondrous forms of beauty and usefulness.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 420.2

    All the machinery of the vast workshop of nature is set in motion, and the results are marvellous in our eyes, yet no commotion is heard. With the mind’s ear we listen delightedly to the harmonious melody of the swinging spheres, the keen, overtones of the ringing, flashing sunlight, the soft undertone of the growing things,-yet, our ear-drums give no answering vibration, and we detect no sound. All the processes of the Divine laboratory, wherein God creates, sustains, and governs worlds, produces and maintains life, and brings forth all His manifold blessings for His creatures, are carried on in a majestic grandeur of a great silence.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 420.3

    There was a time when Elijah, the man of God, went forty days’ journey into the wilderness and lodged in a cave on the mountain, and as he went forth and stood on the mountain a great wind went by that rent the mountain and broke the rocks in pieces; but the Lord was not in the wind; then a mighty earthquake shook the earth, but the Lord was not in the earthquake; then a rushing, devouring flame, yet the Lord was not there; but after that came a “still, small voice,” and it was the voice of God.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 420.4

    “‘They That Take the Sword—’” The Present Truth, 12, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    The Army and Navy Gazette has noted the collection of loafers whose horse play, or indeed whose very presence only, gives such unpleasant prominence to the public-house corner, and suggests its own remedy. The Gazette says:-PTUK July 2, 1896, page 420.5

    We have long enough submitted to the audacious bearing and conduct of tramps, cab-runners, and roughs of many varieties, all of whom ought to have been passed through a period of military training so as to be taught decency, cleanliness, and respect for their superiors.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 420.6

    From these premises the conclusion is reached, naturally enough, that it is surely high time for the country to recognise that military training and discipline, in their elementary forms, are quite as necessary as the three R’s.... It would therefore appear desirable to arrange in some way for the drill of all boys and young men not already serving in the army, militia, or volunteers, so that they may be prepared in due time to take their places in one or another of these three branches of our land forces.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 420.7

    This means that the Army and Navy Gazette wishes to see Englishmen under a similar military despotism to that which has its iron heel on the neck of every able-bodied man of all the continental nations. There is no nation on the continent of Europe in which the civil power is really of supreme influence. The actual, though perhaps at present unacknowledged, authority-the true power behind the throne or the President’s chair-is the military power. To the requirements and needs of this all else must bend. It has become a burden which the citizens of continental countries can scarce any longer endure. There, not only are years of military service compulsory upon every able-bodied man, but, in some instances, even the school-children are subjected to military drill. So burdensome has all this become that the Socialists of Germany, France, and Switzerland, are beginning to attempt some organised movement for relief.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 420.8

    Still, in the face of the experience of these military despotisms, there are continually to be found not a few, in countries yet free, who desire to see the power of militarism increased. Religion and the church, even, furnish the youth with military equipments and teach them army drill and tactics in those lands where the policy of the State is pacific.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 420.9

    It cannot be denied that within the last decade there has been an immense increase in the military spirit throughout all civilised nations, and that the present form of civilisation, and popular religion as well, gives its influence to further this, rather than otherwise.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 420.10

    What the logical outcome of such a situation must be within the next decade is worthy of consideration; and the adoption of measures in mitigation of the universal catastrophe is called for, rather than to add further to the destructive forces already so great.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 420.11

    “Youthful Criminals” The Present Truth, 12, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    The statistics of crime for the last twenty years show one very suggestive fact, and that is the considerable increase in the number of youthful offenders. From one-third to one-fourth of all convictions for larceny, burglary, and crimes against morals, during the last two years, were had against youths under twenty-one years of age. There can be no doubt of the increased intelligence of the youth of the country, as the figures leave no room to doubt the increased criminality. These facts are suggestive of the eventual outcome. Youthful offenders will certainly develop into mature criminals, in the vast majority of cases, under present conditions. This clearly points to a continued growth in the criminal cases. Prophecy affirms that such will be the case until the end comes.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 420.12

    “The Call of Abraham. The Test of Faith” The Present Truth, 12, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    We pass by a period of several years. The number of years we cannot tell, but Isaac, the child of faith and promise had been born, and had grown to be a young man.1That he was not a little child, as our ideas of the word “lad,” might lead us to suppose, is evident from the fact that he was able to carry the wood for the sacrifice up the mountain. Josephus says that he was twenty-five years old, and that age is indicated by the chronology in the margin of our Bibles. Abraham’s faith had grown stronger and more intelligent, for he had learned that God fulfills His own promises. But God is a faithful teacher, and does not allow His pupils to leave a lesson until it is thoroughly learned. It is not enough for them to see and acknowledge that they have made a mistake in the lesson that He has given them. Such acknowledgement of course ensures forgiveness; but, having seen the error, they must go over the same ground again, and possibly many times, until they have learned it so well that they can go without stumbling. It is solely for their own good. It is no kindness on the part of a parent or teacher to allow his children to pass by lessons that are unlearned, simply because they are difficult.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 421.1

    So “it came to pass after these things, that God did prove Abraham, and said unto him, Abraham; and he said, Here am I. And He said, Take now thy son, thine only son, whom thou lovest, even Isaac, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.” Genesis 22:1, 2.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 421.2

    In order to understand what this proving meant, we must have a clear idea of what was bound up in Isaac-of what was embraced in the promise that had been made to Abraham, which was to be fulfilled through Isaac. We have already studied it, and so have only to recall the fact. God had said to Abraham, “In thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed,” and, “In Isaac shall thy seed be called.” As we have seen, the blessing was the blessing of the Gospel, the blessing which comes through Christ and His cross. But this, since God had so said, was to be fulfilled through Isaac. The promised seed, consisting of Christ and of all who are His, was to come through Isaac. Thus we see that to human sight the requirement of God seemed like cutting off all hope of the promise ever being fulfilled.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 421.3

    But the promise was the promise of salvation through Jesus Christ, the seed. The promise had been very explicit, “In Isaac shall thy seed be called,” and that seed was first of all Christ. Therefore Christ the Saviour of all men could come only in Isaac’s line. But Isaac was yet a young man and unmarried. To cut him off would be, so men would reason, to cut off all prospects of the Messiah, and so to cut off all hope of salvation. To all appearance Abraham was called upon virtually to put the knife to his own throat, and to cut off the hope of his own salvation.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 421.4

    Thus we can see that it was not merely Abraham’s fatherly affection that was tried, but his faith in the promise of God. A severer test no man was ever called upon to undergo, for no other man ever could be in the same position. The entire hope of the whole human race was bound up in Isaac, and Abraham was asked apparently to destroy it with a stroke of the knife. Well might the one who could stand such a test be called “the father of the faithful.” We may well believe that Abraham was strongly tempted to doubt if this requirement came from the Lord; it seemed to be so directly contrary to God’s promise.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 421.5

    TEMPTATIONS

    To be tempted, and sorely tempted, is not a sin. “My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations.” James 1:2. The Apostle Peter speaks of the same inheritance which was promised to Abraham, and says that we greatly rejoice in it, “though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations; that the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ; whom having not seen, ye love; in whom though now ye see Him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory; receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls.” 1 Peter 1:6-9.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 421.6

    These temptations cause heaviness, says the apostle. They weigh one down. If it were otherwise-if it took no effort to endure them-they would not be temptations. The fact that a thing is a temptation means that it is something which appeals to all the feelings, and to endure which almost takes the very life. Therefore we may know, without casting the slightest reflection upon Abraham’s faith, that it cost him a terrible struggle to obey the command of the Lord.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 421.7

    Doubts were suggested to his mind. Doubts come from the devil, and no man is so good that he is free from the suggestions of Satan. Even the Lord Himself had to bear them. He “was tempted in all points like as we are, yet without sin.” Hebrews 4:15. The sin does not consist in the devil’s whispering doubts in our ears, but in our acting upon them. This Christ did not do. Neither did Abraham; yet he who thinks that the patriarch started upon his journey without first having a sore struggle, must be unmindful not only of what was involved in the proposed test, but of the feelings of a father.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 421.8

    The tempter would suggest, “This cannot be the requirement of the Lord, because He has promised you an innumerable posterity, and has said that it must come through Isaac.” Again and again would this thought come; but it could not stand, because Abraham knew full well the voice of the Lord. He knew that the call to offer up Isaac came from the same source as the promise. The repetition of that suggestion of the tempter would only make more sure the fact that the requirement, was from the Lord.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 421.9

    But that would not end the struggle. A strong temptation to disregard the command would be found in his own affection for his son. The requirement probed that very deeply: “Take now thy son, thine only son whom thou lovest.” And there was the fond and proud mother. How could he make her believe that it was the Lord that had spoken to him? Would she not reproach him for following the fancies of a disordered mind? How could he break the matter to her? Or, if he should proceed to make the sacrifice without letting her know of it, how could he meet her on his return? Besides, there were the people. Would they not accuse him of murdering his son? We may be sure that Abraham had a desperate struggle with all these suggestions that would crowd upon his mind and heart.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 422.1

    But faith gained the victory. His time of wavering had long since passed, and now “he staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God.” Romans 4:20. “By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac; and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son, of whom it was said, That in Isaac shall thy seed be called; accounting that God was able to raise him up even from the dead; from whence also he received him in a figure.” Hebrews 11:12-19.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 422.2

    The whole thing, from first to last, involved the resurrection of the dead. The birth of Isaac was really the bringing of life from the dead. It was by the power of the resurrection. Abraham had once, through harkening to his wife, failed to trust God’s power to bring him a son from the dead. He had repented of his failure, but must needs be tested upon that point, to ensure that he had thoroughly learned the lesson. The result proved that he had.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 422.3

    THE ONLY BEGOTTEN SON

    “He that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son, of whom it was said, That in Isaac shall thy seed be called; accounting that God was able to raise him up even from the dead.” Note the expression, “his only begotten son.” We cannot read it without being reminded that “God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16. In Abraham’s offering his only begotten son we have a figure of the offering of the only begotten Son of God. And Abraham so understood it. He had already rejoiced in Christ. He knew that through the promised Seed should come the resurrection of the dead; and it was his faith in the resurrection of the dead, which can come only through Jesus, that enabled him to stand the test.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 422.4

    Abraham offered up his only begotten son, in confidence that he would be raised from the dead because God would offer up His only begotten Son. Nay, more, God had already offered His only begotten Son, “who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world,” but who had yet to be manifested. 1 Peter 1:20. And herein we can see the marvelous faith of Abraham, and how fully it comprehended the purpose and the power of God. For the Messiah, the Seed through whom all the blessings were to come to men, was to be born of Isaac’s line. Isaac was to be cut off without an heir. Yet Abraham had such confidence in the life and power of the word of the Lord, that he believed that it would fulfill itself. He believed that the Messiah who was to come of Isaac’s line, and whose death alone could destroy death and bring the resurrection, and who had not yet come into the world, had power to raise up Isaac from the dead, in order that the promise might be fulfilled, and He be yet born into the world. Greater faith than that of Abraham could not possibly exist.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 422.5

    THE RESURRECTION AND THE LIFE

    In this we see not only proof of the pre-existence of Christ but also of Abraham’s knowledge of it. Jesus said, “I am the resurrection and the life.” John 11:25. He was the Word that was in the beginning with God, and that was God. He was the resurrection and the life in the days of Abraham as well as in the time of Lazarus. “In Him was life,” even endless life. Abraham believed it, for he had already proved its power, and he was confident that the life of the Word would bring Isaac to life in order that the promise might be fulfilled.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 422.6

    Abraham started forth on his journey. Three days he pursued his weary way, in which there was ample time for the tempter to assail him with all manner of doubts. But doubt was fully mastered when “on the third day Abraham lifted up his eyes, and saw the place afar off.” Genesis 22:4. Evidently some sign that the Lord had given him appeared on the mountain, and he knew beyond all doubt that the Lord was leading him. The struggle was over, and he went forward to the completion of his task, fully assured that God would bring Isaac from the dead.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 422.7

    “And Abraham said unto his young men, Abide ye here with the ass; and I and the lad will go yonder and worship, and come again to you.” Verse 5. If there were not a single line in the New Testament about this matter, we might know from this verse that Abraham had faith in the resurrection. “I and the lad will go yonder and worship, and come again to you.” In the original it is made very clear: We will go, and we will come again to you. The patriarch had such confidence in the Lord’s promise that he fully believed that although he should offer up Isaac as a burnt offering, his son would be raised again, so that they would both return together. “Hope maketh not ashamed.” Having been justified by faith, he had peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. The trial of his faith had been patiently endured, for we must know that the bitterness of the struggle was now over, and a rich experience of the life that is in the Word had come to him, producing an unwavering hope.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 422.8

    THE SACRIFICE COMPLETED

    We all know the outcome. Isaac carried the wood to the appointed place. The altar was built, and he was bound and laid upon it. Here still we have the likeness to the sacrifice of Christ. God gave His only begotten Son, yet the Son went not unwillingly. Christ “gave Himself for us.” So Isaac freely yielded himself as a sacrifice. He was young and strong, and could easily have resisted or fled if he had wished. But he did not. The sacrifice was his as well as his father’s. As Christ carried His own cross, so Isaac carried the wood for his own sacrifice, and meekly yielded his body to the knife. In Isaac we have a type of Christ, who was “led as a lamb to the slaughter;” Abraham’s statement, “God will provide Himself a lamb,” was but the expression of his faith in the Lamb of God.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 422.9

    “And Abraham stretched forth his hand, and took the knife to slay his son. And the angel of the Lord called unto him out of heaven, and said, Abraham, Abraham; and he said, Here am I. And he said, Lay not thine hand upon the lad, neither do thou anything unto him; for now I know that thou fearest God, seeing that thou hast not withheld thy son, thine only son, from Me. And Abraham lifted up his eyes, and looked, and behold behind him a ram caught in a thicket by his horns; and Abraham went and took the ram, and offered him up for a burnt offering instead of his son.” Genesis 22:10-13. The son’s life was spared, yet the sacrifice was as truly and as completely made as though he had been put to death.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 422.10

    THE WORK OF FAITH

    Let us turn to read what this transaction teaches us as to the relation of faith and works. “Wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? And the Scripture was fulfilled, which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness; and he was called the friend of God.” James 2:20-23.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 423.1

    How is it possible for anyone to suppose that here is any contradiction or modification of the doctrine of justification by faith as set forth in the writings of the Apostle Paul? All the Scriptures teach that faith works. “Faith which worketh by love” (Galatians 5:6) is declared to be the one necessary thing. The Thessalonian brethren were commended for their “work of faith.” 1 Thessalonians 1:2, 3. So the case of Abraham is used as an illustration of the working of faith. God had made a promise to him; he had believed the promise, and his faith had been counted to him for righteousness. His faith was the kind that works righteousness. Now that faith received a practical test, and the works showed that it was perfect. Thus the Scripture was fulfilled which says, “Abraham believed God, and it was imputed to him for righteousness.” This work was the demonstration of the fact that faith had justly been imputed to him for righteousness. It was faith that wrought with his works. The work that Abraham did was a work of faith. His works did not produce his faith, but his faith produced his works. He was justified, not by faith and works, but by faith which works.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 423.2

    THE FRIEND OF GOD

    “And he was called the friend of God.” Jesus said to His disciples, “Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth; but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of My Father, I have made known unto you.” Friendship between two means mutual confidence. In perfect friendship each one reveals himself to the other in a way that he does not to the outside world. There can be no perfect friendship where there is distrust and restraint. Between perfect friends there is a perfect understanding. So God called Abraham his friend, because they perfectly understood each other. This sacrifice fully revealed the character of Abraham. God had said before, “I know him;” and now again He said, “Now I know that thou fearest God.” And Abraham on his part understood the Lord. The sacrifice of his only begotten son indicated that he knew the loving character of God, who for man’s sake had already given His only begotten Son. They were united in a mutual sacrifice and a mutual sympathy. No one could appreciate the feelings of God so well as Abraham could.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 423.3

    No other person can ever be called upon to undergo the same test that Abraham endured, because the circumstances can never again be the same. Never again can the fate of the world be bound up in a single person, and hang, as it were, in the balance. Yet each child of Abraham will be tested, because only they who have the faith of Abraham are the children of Abraham. Each one may be the friend of God, and must be such if he is a child of Abraham. God will manifest Himself unto His people as He does not unto the world.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 423.4

    But we must not forget that friendship is based upon mutual confidence. If we wish the Lord to be confidential with us, we must make Him our confidant. If we confess our sins, laying out before Him in secret all our weaknesses and difficulties, then He will show Himself a faithful friend, and will reveal to us His love, and His power to deliver from temptation. He will show us how He has been tempted in the same way, suffering the same infirmities, and will show us how to overcome. Thus in loving interchange of confidences, weshall sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus, and may sup together. He will show to us wonderful things; for “the secret of the Lord is with them that fear Him; and He will show them His covenant.” Psalm 25:14.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 423.5

    “Matabeleland Savagery” The Present Truth, 12, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    That the savages in Matabeleland are not all black is evident from Buluwayo correspondence which appears in the papers now and then. “There will be a lot of fighting, and I fear a lot killed,” says one newspaper correspondent, “but nevertheless, any amount of sport, as shooting natives just suits this climate.” Another paper prints a letter in which the writer says, “It is grand fun potting niggers off and seeing them fall like nine-pins.” Such correspondents represent very few of the population of Matabeleland, we hope, but these little touches of savagery show how little civilisation without godliness can affect the natural barbarity of fallen human nature.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 423.6

    “Items of Interest” The Present Truth, 12, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    -Nine-tenths of the railway passengers in England and Wales travel third-class.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 430.1

    -Hundreds of tons of strawberries have come into London every day during the week past.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 430.2

    -Spain expects to hold Cuba, her last American possession. Six cities are to present the Government with a gunboat each.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 430.3

    -The cholera is spreading in the provincial towns in Egypt. Since the outbreak about 15,000 deaths have been registered.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 430.4

    -The loss of life in Japan by the tidal wave which followed the recent earthquake is estimated at 80,000, the most disastrous event of recent years.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 430.5

    -Disease is spreading in the desolated parts of Armenia. One relief agent writes of the difficulty in getting doctors to go into districts where disease is taking off the people.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 430.6

    -The strike of factory operatives in St. Petersburg is proving a difficult thing for the authorities to deal with. The majority of the strikers have stood out stubbornly, and mills are idle.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 430.7

    -It is said that Li Hung Chang has given extensive orders for big guns to the great German gun-makers. Some hundreds of young Chinese are to go to Germany for military education.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 430.8

    -From the despatches it appears that in Crete the war between “Christian” and Moslem is like any other civil strife, both sides kill, and burning according to the rules of irregular warfare.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 430.9

    -Fresh disturbances occurred at Van, in Turkey, last week, in which is estimated that 400 Armenians and Turks were killed. The agitation was fostered by paid Armenian agents from abroad.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 430.10

    -Cablegrams from Mashonaland state that the Mashonas are joining the Matabeles, and now the whole of Rhodesia is involved in the rising. The chief Matabele prophet, or war-god, who was directing the campaign in the western country, was killed last week.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 430.11

    -The withered arm of the German Emperor has, it is said, been photographed by the R?ntgen rays, with the result that the character of the malformation has been made clear, and the surgeons declare it possible that a simple operation may yet give him the use of the arm.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 430.12

    -A national testimonial is to be presented to the islanders of Ushant and Helene in recognition of their sympathetic kindness in the treatment of the living and the dead in the asking of the Drummond Castle. The name...ant means “the terrible island,” and such it was on the night of the disaster. Several entire families perished together.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 430.13

    -Following in the wake of Mdlle. Couédon a small boy has appeared in France who is performing miracles of second sight, while in the State of Vermont, U.S.A., a whole corps of maraculous healers has sprung up, following the example of one Bradley Newell, an illiterate blacksmith. This man’s success has been such as to acquire an income of ten thousand pounds a year from this source alone.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 430.14

    “Back Page” The Present Truth, 12, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    There are thirty Bible societies in existence; they have issued over 240,000,000 of Bibles and portions.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 432.1

    From the Catholic press, Anglican and Roman, it is evident that the sudden dropping of the Education Bill in no wise discourages those who demand State aid for the church schools. Their demands will increase rather than diminish.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 432.2

    When the Romish theologian, Dr. Eck, Luther’s adversary, told Duke William, of Bavaria, that he could refute the Reformers with the Fathers, though not with the Scriptures, the Duke replied, “I am to understand, then, that the Lutherans are within the Scriptures, and we are on the outside.”PTUK July 2, 1896, page 432.3

    No one can fail to remark the revival of interest in such occult sciences, as they are called, as find their most active expression in Spiritualism and Theosophy. In Roman Catholicism also apparitions and wonders are reported from many quarters. Satan is working on the minds of men to prepare them for those “signs and wonders” by which he will work to deceive all whose names are not written in the book of life.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 432.4

    The English Church Union enthusiastically affirms that prayers for the dead should be restored to the regular church service. The practice is already common in many Anglican churches. Dean Lucock, at a recent E.C.U. meeting, answered the objection that such a practice had no recognition in the Bible by calling for “a single text in the whole Bible” authorising the substitution of Sunday for the seventh-day Sabbath. The two practices, prayers for the dead and Sunday observance, rest on the same foundation, Catholic tradition, which makes void the Word.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 432.5

    A student of statistics, writing in the Homiletic Review, calls the present “the age of murder in all Christendom.” It is so because it is the age of lawlessness generally, as the days which were before the flood.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 432.6

    “Healthful Words” The Present Truth, 12, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    Healthful Words .-Paul frequently exhorts us to hold fast the “sound words.” Literally, it is helpful words. The words of God are full of life, and are health to the soul that feeds upon them.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 432.7

    “Protestants as Persecutors” The Present Truth, 12, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    Protestants as Persecutors .-Last week we described the treatment meted out to Sabbath-keepers in one district in Russia, where about twenty-five had been imprisoned for two days every week for meeting on the Sabbath. A later report says:-PTUK July 2, 1896, page 432.8

    The room in which they were confined is so small that they cannot lie down, and there is no opening for air, reminding one of the Black Hole of Calcutta. When they ask for air, they are told to forsake their Sabbath nonsense, and they shall have it. Part of their time is occupied in singing the songs of Zion. At first they were asked to stop this, and as they continued, rowdies gathered and stormed without; but now they sing without disturbance. This is a German colony, and the perpetrators of this shameful treatment are not Russians, but professed Protestants. Notwithstanding this trying ordeal, new members are being added to this company.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 432.9

    “A Moslem Defender” The Present Truth, 12, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    A Moslem Defender .-In their hatred of the law of God these professed Protestants thrust Sabbath-keepers into the prisons from which Lutheranism itself has suffered in Russia in past days. Thus the descendants of Luther are denying the vital principle of the Reformation, as they are brought face to face with the truth. The report continues:-PTUK July 2, 1896, page 432.10

    According to Russian law for dissenters, they have a right to meet; and now a Mohammedan lawyer has taken the case in hand, basing his action on this law. This is a striking case! Protestants so zealous in persecuting fellow Protestants that they even go beyond Russian laws, and must be called to a halt by a Mohammedan! How literally Revelation 12:17 and chapter 13 are being fulfilled all over the world!PTUK July 2, 1896, page 432.11

    In concluding his report, Bro. H. P. Holser, of Switzerland, who has recently returned from Russia, says: “The outlook for the work in Russia was never better.”PTUK July 2, 1896, page 432.12

    “Why Protestants?” The Present Truth, 12, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    Why Protestants? -Why is it that in Russia and other countries Protestants are doing the same thing by Sunday laws that Romanists did in olden time in Europe, and in present times are now doing in some countries, by laws requiring the recognition of the ecclesiastical institutions and ceremonies? The answer is simple: They have very largely ceased to be Bible Protestants. They want Sunday kept. They are getting to know that there is no Bible authority for the day. The general public is finding out that the Sunday displaced the Sabbath of the Lord just where all the corruptions of Romanism swept into the church to displace the Gospel. In the face of all the evidence, and moved by the spirit which inevitably controls every society which refuses to follow the Word, the Protestant world has determined to enforce the Sunday observance, as far as it can, by human law. “All nations have drunk of the wine” of Rome’s corruption. So says the prophet, and we can see the evidences multiplying.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 432.13

    “In America” The Present Truth, 12, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    In America .-There it is that we can see at its worst, just now, the manifestation of the determination to make Sunday observance compulsory-the chief mark of fallen Protestantism, as it has ever been the mark of papal authority. Nearly every mail from the States brings exchanges which publish the developments in the crusade which the American Protestant churches are carrying on in their effort to blot out the Sabbath and elevate the Sunday. The last New York Sentinel reports that when one of our brethren in Tennessee was recently sent to prison for not observing Sunday “two ministers were at the gaol to see that he was thrust into the cage, which is the inner prison.” All the denominations which we here call Nonconformists are joined in trying to secure the kind of conformity in America of which Sunday observance is the mark. When some ministers in these denominations, who see the principle of all this, cry out against it, they are silenced by the voices of the thoughtless majority.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 432.14

    “What to Do” The Present Truth, 12, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    What to Do .-What is to be done to meet this propaganda of force which is gathering in all Christendom? “Preach the Word.” That is the only thing. The Word and the law of God will stand with all the power of the world opposed to them. To those who desire to stand upon the Word God gives this assurance: “Lift up your eyes to the heavens, and look upon the earth beneath, for the heavens shall vanish away like smoke, and the earth shall wax old like a garment, and they that dwell therein shall die in like manner; but My salvation shall be for ever, and My righteousness shall not be abolished. Hearken unto Me, ye that know righteousness, the people in whose heart is My law; fear ye not the reproach of men, neither be ye afraid of their revilings.” “Fear God, and give glory to Him,” is the Gospel message now to all.PTUK July 2, 1896, page 432.15

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