Loading...
Larger font
Smaller font
Copy
Print
Contents
  • Results
  • Related
  • Featured
No results found for: "undefined".
  • Weighted Relevancy
  • Content Sequence
  • Relevancy
  • Earliest First
  • Latest First
    Larger font
    Smaller font
    Copy
    Print
    Contents

    January 23, 1896

    “‘Wherefore Didst Thou Doubt?’” The Present Truth, 12, 4.

    E. J. Waggoner

    The Bible sets forth Jesus as “upholding all things by the word of His power.” Hebrews 1:3.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 49.1

    That word not only has power to uphold, but “is able to build you up and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified.” Acts 20:32.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 49.2

    An instance of the upholding power of Christ’s word is given in Matthew 14:25-32. The disciples were on the raging sea, when they were astonished by the appearance of Jesus walking on the water. When Jesus reassured them with, “Be of good cheer; it is I; be not afraid,” Peter said, “Lord, if it be Thou, bid me come unto Thee on the water. And He said unto him, Come.”PTUK January 23, 1896, page 49.3

    Peter at once responded to the word “Come,” and “walked on the water to go to Jesus.” Some might hastily suppose that it was the water that held Peter up; but a little reflection will show that it was not so. It is contrary to nature for water to hold a man up; and, moreover, we read that when Peter “saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying, Lord, save me.” Jesus caught him, saying, “O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?”PTUK January 23, 1896, page 49.4

    If it had been the water that was supporting him, he would not have begun to sink; for the water was just the same where he sunk as it was where he walked. So when we remember the words of Jesus, “Wherefore didst thou doubt?” We know that when Peter walked on the water, it was the word of Jesus that supported him. It was the word “Come” that brought him, and it was only when he distrusted that word that he began to go down.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 49.5

    The same word that held Peter on the top of the water, can hold a man up in the air. Elijah and Elisha were at one time walking along together when Elisha began to rise in the air. Why was it?-Because the Lord had said to Elijah, “Come;” and since the prophet had always obeyed the word of the Lord, he obeyed that one also.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 49.6

    We read that “by faith Enoch was translated.” Hebrews 11:5. But “faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” Romans 10:17. So it was the word of the Lord that took Enoch as well as Elijah through the air to meet the Lord. But they were only forerunners of those who, being alive when the Lord descends from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God, and the dead in Christ shall rise, shall be “caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air.” 1 Thessalonians 4:16, 17.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 50.1

    What is it that will support those favoured ones, and hold them up in the air? The same word that upheld Peter on the water. The Lord will say, “Come, ye blessed of My Father.” Matthew 25:34. Those who have been accustomed to obey the word of the Lord, will respond at once, and will be taken; while those who have not obeyed every word of the Lord, will not obey that one, and will be left.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 50.2

    Those who have neglected to take the word of the Lord as applying to them personally, will not accept that word, “Come,” as applying to them. Only those who recognise that every time the Lord speaks He speaks to them, will be able to take that word to themselves. The waiting ones will be those who have lived on the word of the Lord, so that at the word “Come,” they will, as the most natural thing in the world, go to meet the Lord. Happy are they who know the sustaining power of the word, and to take it all to themselves.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 50.3

    “‘A Warning to the Bishops’” The Present Truth, 12, 4.

    E. J. Waggoner

    We are accustomed to see frequent warnings addressed to the Episcopal Bench by the Protestant organs of the Church of England. But it is something novel to see the Church Times, the organ of the Sacerdotal party, giving the bishops a thorough scolding. By one branch of the Church press they are scolded for going so near to Rome, and by the other for not going still nearer. We had supposed, with most Protestants, that as a body the Bishops were going as far as the most ardent Ritualist could expect of officials who have to do with two distinct branches in the Church. The following paragraph, with which the organ mentioned begins its warning, shows that the most active element in the Anglican body is far from satisfied with the present state of progress in Ritualism:-PTUK January 23, 1896, page 50.4

    The time has come when priests and laity of the Church of England should plainly speak their minds to the Bishops. Blind men do not fear serpents, and the Bishops can hardly know the strong feeling that the action of some of them in certain directions, and the inaction of all of them in others, is arousing far and wide. English Churchmen are a patient and longsuffering race, because they are trained in habits of obedience to authority, but when they see that authority running the ship on the rocks they would be faithless indeed if they let their patience degenerate into acquiescence. There is a time to keep silence, and there is a time to speak out, and in our judgment it is plain speech that the present juncture most demands.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 50.5

    “Native African Honesty” The Present Truth, 12, 4.

    E. J. Waggoner

    The Chronicle’s special correspondent in connection with the Ashanti Expedition, writing from Cape Coast Castle of the arrangements for transporting military stores, provision, etc., into the interior, incidentally gives the following tribute to the honesty of the natives. We are not informed whether or not the natives spoken of professed Christianity; but in any case it is enough out of the ordinary to be worthy of note:-PTUK January 23, 1896, page 50.6

    The more one sees of our coloured brethren of these parts, the more one is influenced in their favour. One could hardly meet a more amiable race to work with. Once satisfied that their pay was assured, and that the white officers were disposed to treat them with honesty and justice, difficulties immediately began to disappear. Now daily and hourly gangs leave the yard of the Castle under their headmen and gangers, bearing their various loads, and in no case, with the following exception, have they failed to deliver the loads at their destination. The exception, in my opinion, redounds rather than depreciates the credit due to this cheery race. In one of the gangs which left some days ago were two men who apparently on the journey up concluded that a life of freedom in their native wild was preferable to one of industry, with the necessary restrictions, under the fostering care of the Army Service Corps. They placed their loads on the side of the road, on the top of their loads they placed their numbered badges, and on the top of their badges they placed the amount of money which had been advanced to them for subsistence on the road. These little tributes to the African sense of honesty were brought back to Major Clayson, a couple of days ago, by two native policemen, who had found them while patrolling. During the time these little piles remained on the roadside many hundred carriers must have past and observed them. Yet not a penny of the subsistence money was deficient. It is a question for consideration whether in Christian England we could guarantee a similar condition of affairs. From many inquiries which I have made I have learnt that this is no exceptional case, and that it is a matter of the rarest occurrence for a carrier to make away with a load entrusted to his care.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 50.7

    “War and Murder” The Present Truth, 12, 4.

    E. J. Waggoner

    “Wars and rumours of wars” are among the signs of the last days. In the last days perilous times shall come, because “men shall be lovers of their own selves,” and will be fierce. “Nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom.” Matthew 24:7. These things have always been, yet they are to increase as the end approaches; and the last great event of this world’s history is to be the gathering of the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to “the battle of the great day of God Almighty.” Revelation 16:14.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 50.8

    The end of that last great battle is thus described by the prophets: “All the armour of the armed men in the tumult, and the garments rolled in blood, shall even be for burning and, for fuel of fire.” Isaiah 9:5, R.V. When the kings of the earth, and their armies, are gathered together for that last battle, it will be for their complete destruction, so that the fowls of the air will be filled with “the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great.” Revelation 19:17-21. Yet the men who march to that battle will do so with the same high spirits that they have had in previous fights, fired by “patriotic” feelings, and dreaming of victory and glory, without a thought that it is to end in the final utter destruction of all concerned in it.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 50.9

    It is very evident that not one of God’s people will have any part in that battle. When the last fight is waged, not a Christian will be found in the ranks of any army on earth; although it is safe to say that there will be thousands who will imagine themselves to be good Christians, and who will think, as many do to-day, that there assurance of heavenly bliss will only be made the more sure if they fall with their face to the foe.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 50.10

    It is also evident that no professed Christian believes in murder. True, many of them think that it is quite right to take human life, but only in what is called “honourable warfare.” They must not murder, and they must not be in the last battle. An important question, therefore, is, Where shall the line be drawn, so that Christians may be free from condemnation in anything that involves the taking of life? This question, like all others, is plainly answered by the Bible.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 51.1

    THE ORIGIN OF WAR

    The question is asked by the Apostle James, “From whence come wars and fightings among you?” And the answer immediately follows: “Come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members? Ye lust, and have not; ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain; ye fight and war, yet ye receive not, because ye ask not. Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.” James 4:1-3.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 51.2

    From the next verse we learn that these desires whence come wars and fightings, are worldly lusts, for the question is asked, “Know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? Whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.”PTUK January 23, 1896, page 51.3

    Turn now to 1 John 2:15-17, and we shall find a classification of these worldly lusts that lead to war: “Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof; but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.”PTUK January 23, 1896, page 51.4

    Take a single instance of the working of this desire to have. Two men own adjoining fields, but there is a dispute as to the boundary line. The land is valuable, and that portion through which the dividing fence runs is the most valuable of all. A claims that there was a mistake in the survey, and that the fence ought to be moved ten yards in order to give him the land that belongs to him. But B insists that he has no more land than belongs to him, but that, on the contrary, a portion of what A claims really belongs to him, at any rate he will not yield an inch.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 51.5

    Each is determined to have his “rights.” Besides the lust of the flesh, the pride of life comes in, and each man feels that it would be wholly inconsistent with his dignity to yield to the other. Moreover threats and insulting words have been used, such as “no man of proper spirit could be expected to stand.” Each feels himself not only wronged, but abused, and each demands from the other an apology and reparation. But each one feels that his “honour” as well as his property is at stake, and is determined not to yield.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 51.6

    So the feud grows. From hard words the men come to blows. Finally each deliberately resolves to take the other’s life. Then the disputed boundary will not only be settled, but the survivor can take as much more of the other’s property as he wishes.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 51.7

    Accordingly they arm themselves with knives or guns, and meet and begin stabbing or shooting, until one of them is dead. Then what follows:-Why, the man who kills the other is called a murderer, and is hanged, denounced by all the neighbourhood.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 51.8

    But suppose now that instead of two farms we have two countries; instead of a few roods of land we have some thousands of square miles; and instead of two men involved, we have hundreds of thousands. There is a dispute as to the boundary line. Each nation feels that its rights are threatened; and, besides, undiplomatic language has been used, which must be resented. The “national honour” will not allow any concessions on either side. So armed bodies of men meet and shoot at each other. Instead of one man, thousands are killed. The conquerors take the disputed territory, and as much more as they wish, and the victorious army marches home. How are they regarded? Are they called murderers?-Oh, no; they are greeted with shouts and songs, and are lauded as patriots.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 51.9

    Where is the difference in the two cases?-It is only in the greater number of men killed in the second case. Therefore we must conclude that the sole difference between war and murder is in the extent of the interests and the number of people involved. If only one man is killed, it is murder. If one man kills four or five men, that is an aggravated case of murder. But if thousands fight, and hundreds are killed, that is “glorious war,” although precisely the same passions lead to each result. The question is, Does God regard it as less sinful to kill a thousand men than to kill one? His Word answers: “Though hand join in hand, the wicked shall not be unpunished.” Proverbs 11:21.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 51.10

    CHRISTIANS AND SELF-DEFENCE

    Now we know why there will be no Christians in the army at the time of the last great battle. It will be because they will have learned that “the servant of the Lord must not strive, but be gentle to all men.” 2 Timothy 2:24. Of course such a man has no place in an army organised to fight and kill.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 51.11

    Christ’s followers are not allowed to fight even in defence of Him and His kingdom. John 18:36. Much less, then, can they fight in self-defence. It would be more proper to say that they cannot fight in defence of His kingdom, because it is a kingdom of peace, and to fight with earthly weapons would be to fight against it, instead of in its defence. “The weapons of our warfare are not carnal.” If there were not in any person the passions which if cherished naturally lead to murder, there would never be any war on earth. Both come from the same source, so that war is nothing but wholesale murder.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 51.12

    It is commonly accepted that it is perfectly consistent with Christianity for both individuals and nations to fight in self-defence. Yet the words of Christ are very plain: “I say unto you that ye resist not evil; but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also.” Matthew 5:39. We make all sorts of excuses, and find all manner of difficulties in the way of obeying this commandment, just as we may with any commandment which we are not willing to obey. The only way to know how a commandment may be obeyed, is to accept it without question. It is by faith, not by unbelief, that we understand.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 51.13

    It is true that the different nations cannot retain their separate existence without armies and war. But this need not cause the Christian any uneasiness. His daily prayer to God is to be “Thy kingdom come.” When that kingdom comes “the Lord shall be King over all the earth; in that day there shall be one Lord, and His name one.” Zechariah 14:9. His kingdom is a kingdom of peace. How then can men pray: “Thy kingdom come,” and at the same time fight to maintain a condition of things contrary to that kingdom?PTUK January 23, 1896, page 51.14

    Suppose we give a little attention to this matter of self-defence. A man assaults another, and demands his money. Whether the man thus accosted has little money or much makes no difference; his first impulse is to defend himself, and save what he has. We will suppose that he has ten pounds in his possession. The thief is persistent in his demands, and he resists. The robber is determined, and uses violence, and the man is equally determined not to part with his money. The struggle is sharp, and the robber is killed. The man has acted only in self-defence, and public sentiment acquits him.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 52.1

    But suppose the robber succeeds in killing his victim, and takes the ten pounds. Then public sentiment condemns him. He has truly committed a wicked deed. He has murdered a man for the paltry sum of ten pounds. Yes; but why is it so much worse for the robber to kill a man for ten pounds than it would be for the man to kill the robber for the same amount? Since the man could have avoided all difficulty by giving up his money, is it not evident that he has killed his antagonist solely for the money?PTUK January 23, 1896, page 52.2

    Take a case where only life is involved. Suppose a man has a grudge against me, thinking that I stand in the way of the accomplishment of his ends. Or, perhaps he is actuated by pure hatred, and he seeks my life. Now if when he attacks me, I kill him to save my own life, how much better am I than he would have been if he had succeeded in killing me? Oh, I have saved my life! True, but at the loss of his; and what right have I to assume that my life is more valuable than his? It is only because it is mine. And so we see that self-defence, as the word implies, is nothing but selfishness. And this is the sole principle that moves either nations or men to fight.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 52.3

    “But it is natural to defend oneself. ‘Self-preservation is the first law of nature.’” True; but it is spiritual to refrain from all violence, and self-sacrifice is the first and only law of grace. If self were dead, there would be no impulse to self-defence. If we can say, “I am crucified with Christ; nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me” (Galatians 2:20), we shall have no occasion to defend ourselves; but it is not I who am attacked, but Christ; and Christ does not ask us to fight in His defence.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 52.4

    The verse just quoted gives us the solution of the whole question. It is natural to fight to defend ourselves; but the cross of Christ delivers us from ourselves, and gives us the Divine nature. The natural man, the carnal mind, is enmity. But Christ is our peace, and He makes peace through the blood of His cross. Ephesians 2:14-17; Colossians 1:20.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 52.5

    After nearly nineteen centuries of professed Christianity in the world, the cross of Christ is preached less than anything else. “Christ and Him crucified” is that which the professed Church of Christ stands most in need of to-day. If all professed Christians gloried only in the cross of Christ, not one of them would be found apologising for war of any kind, under any circumstances; for war and fightings come only from “this present evil world” (Galatians 1:4), from which the cross of Christ delivers us.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 52.6

    Let men of this world glory in this world; but let men of the world to come, whom God has translated into the kingdom of His dear Son, evermore say, “God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, whereby the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world.”PTUK January 23, 1896, page 52.7

    “How the Lord Helps” The Present Truth, 12, 4.

    E. J. Waggoner

    Where human wisdom and foresight can see nothing but failure, God can see success. “When the poor and needy seek water, and there is none, and their tongue faileth for thirst, I the Lord will hear them, I the God of Israel will not forsake them.”PTUK January 23, 1896, page 53.1

    When there is no water, how can thirst be satisfied? “I will open rivers in high places, and fountains in the midst of the valleys.” The natural thing is to find rivers in the valleys and springs in high places, but the Lord is not dependent on the ordinary course of nature. He can do what men cannot.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 53.2

    Where the way of the Lord seems difficult, if not impassible, when it is a human impossibility to walk in the path in which the voice of the Lord directs, we are to remember that he who yields to the Lord unreservedly lays the burden of responsibility on One who is able to bear it. Another word in this forty-first of Isaiah, all of which is written to teach that God’s power is for us, says, “I the Lord thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee.” That means you.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 53.3

    “Baby’s Conversion” The Present Truth, 12, 4.

    E. J. Waggoner

    “It is announced on the best authority,” says a Sofia despatch, “that the Russian Ambassador to the Porte has intimated to the Exarch at Constantinople that, when the conversion of Prince Boris takes place, a special Envoy of the Russian Government will be present.” The baby’s “conversion” will take palce just at the hour set by the officials.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 53.4

    “The Spirit as Witness and Guide” The Present Truth, 12, 4.

    E. J. Waggoner

    On all sides the Bible is being discredited. Of the attacks of professed infidels, and of the so-called Higher Critics, we need not speak, because they are so open and undisguised that people may be on their guard. But the most dangerous assault upon the Bible is that which makes it secondary to Christ or the Holy Spirit, so that people unconsciously set the Word of God aside while imagining that they are doing superior homage to Him who gave the Word.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 54.1

    An instance of this, which is becoming deplorably common among Christian people, is found in the reply of the New York Independent to the taunt of a Catholic paper in regard to its acceptance of the Bible as the only rule of faith. It said:-PTUK January 23, 1896, page 54.2

    When did the Independent ever say that the Bible is the sole and only rule of faith? We believe that our Lord said, that He would give His Spirit “which shall lead you into all truth.” We regard the teaching of the Holy Spirit as a rule of faith.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 54.3

    Such is the looseness with which the Bible is now held, that most people would doubtless see in this only a tribute to the Holy Spirit instead of the disparagement of the Word of God. Let us see what the Bible says about the matter.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 54.4

    In the first place, it is positively stated that the Bible came only by the Spirit. “The prophecy came not in old time by the will of man; but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.” 2 Peter 1:21.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 54.5

    Not only so, but the Holy Spirit was in all cases the speaker, so that the Bible is the language of the Holy Spirit, and of none other. Thus the sweet Psalmist of Israel said, “The Spirit of the Lord spake by me, and His word was in my tongue.” 2 Samuel 23:2.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 54.6

    With this agrees the words of the Apostle Peter, when he spoke of the Scripture “which the Holy Ghost by the mouth of David spake before concerning Judas.” Acts 1:16. Also the words of 1 Timothy 4:1: “Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith.”PTUK January 23, 1896, page 54.7

    When Christ promised the disciples the Spirit in His absence, He said: “When He is come He will convict the world in respect of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment.” John 16:8, R.V. The first work of the Spirit is to convict of sin. But by what means?-By “the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God” (Ephesians 6:17); “For the word of God is living and active, and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and quick to discern the thoughts and intents of the heart.” Hebrews 4:12. “By the law is the knowledge of sin” (Romans 3:20), because “the law is spiritual.” Romans 7:14.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 54.8

    Again, the promise of Christ is, “When He, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth.” John 16:13. But the Saviour also said in praying to the Father for His disciples: “Sanctify them through Thy truth; Thy Word is truth.” John 17:17. The Holy Spirit sanctifies because the Spirit uses the word of truth. So we read that “God has from the beginning chosen us unto salvation: through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth.” 2 Thessalonians 2:13.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 54.9

    Read onward in the Saviour’s promise that the Spirit shall guide us into all truth: “For He shall not speak from Himself; but what things soever He shall hear, these shall He speak.” “He shall glorify Me; for He shall receive of Mine and shall declare it unto you. All things whatsoever the Father hath are Mine; therefore said I, that He taketh of Mine and shall declare it unto you.” John 16:13-15; R.V. The Spirit is sent to us by the Father, even as Christ was sent by the Father; so just as Christ spoke not His own words, but those which the Father gave Him, the Spirit does likewise. Here we have evidence not simply that the Word of God is the witness of the Spirit, but that the Spirit does not speak anything but what we find in the Word of God-the Bible. He is not independent of the Father, but speaks only the word of the Father.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 54.10

    We read, in harmony with Christ’s promise, that the Spirit makes us know “ the things that are freely given to us of God,” and this is because “the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.” 1 Corinthians 2:10, 12. The “deep things of God,” which the Spirit shows us, are the great things of God’s law (Hosea 8:12); and so we are taught to pray, “Open Thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of Thy law.” Psalm 119:18. This opening of the eyes is the work of the Spirit-“the Spirit of wisdom and revelation.”PTUK January 23, 1896, page 54.11

    “Well,” someone may say, “I believe in the direct witness of the Spirit; I know that the Spirit witnesses to me that I am a child of God.” The Holy Spirit does certainly witness with the spirits of some men, but not all. With whom does He witness? With those who believe; for none others are of God, and so none others can possibly have the witness.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 55.1

    This witness is direct too; but how is it? A witness testifies, and must testify in words. Now in what words does the Spirit testify? Why, manifestly in the words which are given Him to speak,-even the words of God. So we read: “He that believeth on the Son hath the witness in himself; he that believeth not God, hath made Him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of His Son.” 1 John 5:10.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 55.2

    “To Him give all the prophets witness.” Acts 10:43. But we have already read that the prophets spoke only as the Spirit spoke through them. So we read in Hebrews of the offering of Christ, “whereof the Holy Ghost also is a witness unto us” (Hebrews 10:15), and then follow the words which He testified.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 55.3

    It is evident, therefore, that any disparagement of the Bible, even to the slightest degree, is a disparagement of the Holy Spirit. To ignore the Bible as a guide, and at the same time to profess to honour the Holy Spirit, is the same as professed great respect for a man, and at the same time to ignore or deny what he says.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 55.4

    It may be said that the Bible is not ignored, but that the Spirit is taken as an additional guide. But what then is the use of the Bible? If the Spirit testifies part of the time aside from the Bible, why not all the time? That this is an actual ignoring of the Bible, is proved by the results; for those who profess to believe that the Holy Spirit leads apart from the Word of God, inevitably come to trust wholly in that supposed guidance, even though it is contrary to the Word.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 55.5

    If it were true that the Spirit did testify to us, apart from the Bible, then we should have nothing but our own minds by which to determine whether or not any impression is really from the Spirit. And so it is, that they who think that the Spirit leads them, independently of God’s Word, are simply following their own desires and imaginations. A complete demonstration of this is seen in the fact that those who follow such supposedly independent leading of the Spirit, invariably run into a direct violation of God’s law.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 55.6

    Let no one think that he can exalt the Father, the Son, or the Holy Spirit at the expense of the Bible. Just as the Bible is honoured, will they be honoured. The Spirit of God is sufficient to guide us into all truth, and to make us perfect in it, because He guides humble, trusting ones into the full understanding of the Scripture, which is able to make a man “perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” 2 Timothy 3:17.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 55.7

    “A Night on the Alps” The Present Truth, 12, 4.

    E. J. Waggoner

    It is inexcusable for men to put their lives in jeopardy for no other purpose than the pleasure and satisfaction of seeing a beautiful sight. Not even this motive can explain all the recklessness of mountaineers, for which the native guides in some parts have a name signifying a malady. The feverish desire to do a reckless thing which few or none have dared to undertake is very often the explanation of undertakings which not infrequently end in disaster. The following description of a night on the Alps shows the difficulties often experienced:-PTUK January 23, 1896, page 60.1

    In August, 1890, three members of the Alpine Club, Messrs. Slingsby, Solly and Smith, had a thrilling night adventure on the Dent Blanche, one of the very difficult peaks of the Alps. The trio were all expert mountaineers, well aware of what they had undertaken, and neglected no precautions; but some things cannot be provided against. They spent the previous night in a ruined mountain cabin, whence they set forth a little before two o'clock in the morning on their long day’s task. They had no certainty of success, but as the day wore on and one bad place after another was surmounted, their hopes rose, and finally, at four o'clock in the afternoon, they stood on the summit, in a little cloud.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 60.2

    At that hour, with the descent to be made before dark, they could not stay, and in less than a minute were on their return. By and by an occasional flash of lightning played about one of the distant peaks, and soon afterward a dark cloud crept up ominously behind another peak.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 60.3

    The men made such haste as they could, and at six o'clock were almost out of their difficulties. Before them was a bad stretch of only a hundred and fifty feet, beyond which they would have little trouble, no matter how the weather might turn.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 60.4

    Suddenly it grew dark. A dense cloud had fallen upon them. Their ice-axes and gloves emitted sparks, and their hair stood out straight. The sparks gave out no heat, nor was there any hissing, but one of the men, who wore spectacles, felt them vibrating in a way he did not like, and so tucked them under his hat.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 60.5

    Ordinarily the axes would have been put aside under such conditions, but now this was not to be thought of. The men must cross that one hundred and fifty feet without delay, and at all risks; and to that end the axes must be kept.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 60.6

    Steadily and carefully the men worked, every step requiring time and caution, when all at once the whold mountainside seemed to be ablaze, “and at the same time there was a muzzled, muffled, or suppressed peal of thunder, apparently coming out of the interior of the mountain.”PTUK January 23, 1896, page 60.7

    Solly and Smith exclaimed in the same breath, “My axe is struck,” and naturally each of them let his axe go.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 60.8

    With only one axe there was no going forward, and the trio waited for the storm to pass, while Smith asked his companions to look at his neck, exactly half-way round which the lightning had burned a dark band an inch and a quarter wide.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 60.9

    The storm lasted so long that it became hopeless to proceed, though, if the men could have crossed the next hundred and fifty feet, they could have gone down to the hut even in the dark. It was hard fortune, but there was no help for it.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 60.10

    They had warm clothing, plenty of food, and a lantern. Smith “managed to get a capital hitch” for the rope-for the party was of course roped together-and lashed them to the rock, where they were to pass the night on a steep ledge varying from a foot and a half to two feet in width.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 60.11

    Their situation may be appreciated from Mr. Slingsby’s account of it. “Solly, who sat at the bottom, had a loose piece of friable rock which supported one foot. I was in the middle, with my knees up to my chin, on a steep slope, but was supported by Solly’s back, and by a singularly sharp little stone on which I squatted. Smith leaned with his back against a corner, and with his knees against my back.” Pretty narrow quarters for an all-night vigil!PTUK January 23, 1896, page 60.12

    Several brief showers of snow and hail fell, but happily there was no rain. The wind rose, and whistled through the crags above, but was partly shut off by a ledge. The men kept their hands and feet moving, especially after two o'clock, when the sky cleared and the cold became intense. Meanwhile, Smith imagined that Solly was a man of another name, and so addressed him all night long, an hallucination supposed to be the result of the electric shock.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 60.13

    At five o'clock they ate breakfast, and soon caught sight of the lost axes half embedded in hard snow at some distance below, and with some difficulty one of them was recovered by Solly, while his companions kept their perch till he returned.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 60.14

    It was still too cold for them to proceed safely, and they stayed upon the ledge till eight o'clock. Then, warmed and limbered by the sun, they entered upon the work of crossing the bad one hundred and fifty feet which had held them prisoners, and after much difficulty-cutting steps in the ice as they went-they found themselves safe and sound on the other side, where they made such haste as they could to the base, thinking especially of the alarm of their friends, some of whom they presently met coming up the mountain in search of them.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 60.15

    “Items of Interest” The Present Truth, 12, 4.

    E. J. Waggoner

    -Of the population of India, 52,000,000 are engaged in agriculture.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 62.1

    -China raises a revenue of ?2,000,000 per year on opium imported from India.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 62.2

    -The hottest weather ever experienced in New South Wales was reported last week.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 62.3

    -The Transvaal contains about 300,000 inhabitants, of whom about 100,000 are whites.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 62.4

    -Over one thousand parsons lost their lives by an earthquake reported from Persia last week.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 62.5

    -As a result of the spring-like winter, primroses and other spring flowers are reported blooming.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 62.6

    -The active insurgents in the island of Cuba number some 25,000. Macao, the leader, is a mulatto,PTUK January 23, 1896, page 62.7

    -The number of men in the Navy last year was 88,850, an increase of 5,450. This year there is to be a greater increase.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 62.8

    -In case of war Germany is prepared to put 3,350,000 men in the field, fully armed. All Germany would be an armed camp.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 62.9

    -The estimated tonnage of the shipping now afloat is over twenty-five millions. Of this a little over half is under the British flag.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 62.10

    -It is estimated that the French colonies in Indo-China have cost France over ?50,000,000, and they do not now pay their way.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 62.11

    -The last census of India gives the following figures on religions: 207 million Hindus, 57 million Mohammedans, seven million Buddhists, two million Christians.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 62.12

    -The population of Ireland was highest in 1845, when it stood at 8,295,064. The potato famine followed for two years, and gave impulse to emigration, which has steadily continued. The latest census gives the population as 4,704,750. Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom where the population decreases. Emigration from Ireland during the past ten years has averaged about 62,000 per year, most of which has been to the United States.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 62.13

    -It appears from statistics given in one of the Reviews that there are 4,103,806 people of British birth residing in the United States, and 12,100,000 of British parentage. There were 26,000,000 native Americans, “mostly of British origin.” The rest of the population, it appears, consisted of 7,500,000 coloured and 13,900,000 of various European nationalities. The fact is not pointed out, but the “British” section obviously includes all the American-Irish.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 62.14

    -In addition to the new Flying Squadron the Admiralty still have quite a list of vessels in reserve, available if required. There are also eight line of battleships of the first class either building or in the fitters hands. Most of these are of the heaviest type. Twenty-one cruisers are else under way, and twenty torpedo-boat destroyers have been ordered this year. When the work in hand is completed about fifty new ships will be added to the British Navy. Yet it is expected that the next estimate will provide for many more ships.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 62.15

    “Back Page” The Present Truth, 12, 4.

    E. J. Waggoner

    There is destitution even in the Diamond Fields of South Africa, as many find to their sorrow. As an aid to work among the destitute, our friends in South Africa have established the “Kimberley Benevolent Home.”PTUK January 23, 1896, page 64.1

    The report of the eighth annual conference of our churches in Australia, recently held in Melbourne, shows an increase during the year of 322 in membership. The meeting was largely attended, and was a season of special spiritual profit as the Word was spoken and received.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 64.2

    It seems that blessings may be sent by telegraph. The Pope has telegraphed “the apostolic benediction” upon all present at the ceremony in Baltimore by which Mr. Satolli was made Cardinal. Among those present, who received this “blessing” there were, besides Catholic priests, bishops, and archbishops, members of Congress, senators, ministers of States, generals, ambassadors, and the Vice-President of the United States.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 64.3

    Of Italian finances “Whitaker’s Almanac” says, “The nation is enthusiastic and united as to the necessity of having a strong army and navy, but objects to taxation, consequently there is an annual deficit, and the national debt is rapidly accumulating.” So it comes that the interest on the debt is nearly half of the entire revenue of the country. But then, Italy can put an army of over two million men in the field, and has a navy of 269 ships.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 64.4

    When men get the idea that the responsibility of keeping the rest of the world in order rests upon them, and they think that they are in the place of God, to regulate other people according to their ways and thoughts, untold evil is sure to result, since the idea is a wicked one, and from evil only evil can come. This idea is becoming more and more prevalent in the world. A fresh instance of its working is reported by Brother Conradi, from Russia, as follows:-PTUK January 23, 1896, page 64.5

    One of our German churches in the south, of some forty members, has of late been forbidden to assemble on the Sabbath. As they persisted, the whole church was imprisoned twice, twenty-four hours each time, and then they have four times been fined fifty cents (2s.) each, and threatened that in case they do not pay their fine, everything they have will be sold; but their trust is in the Lord.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 64.6

    By replacing the engine, seized by the Government for violation of the Sunday clause of the Factory Act, we are able to run our presses, which remained after the seizure. Thus we are printing our paper again, getting the folding and other lines of work formerly performed by female employés done outside of our works. It was a wicked thing to shut these persons away from their work, to say in effect that from henceforth in this United Kingdom women cannot engage in manufacturing industries, so far as factories are concerned, unless they keep the Sunday. It was because the International Tract Society could not join in this exaltation of a papal institution that they could be no party to enforcing Sunday rest in their printing works on any portion of their employés. The Government having chosen to assume the sinful responsibility of shutting the factory in the process of exalting the Sunday, we leave the responsibility with them, having done all we can to keep them from it.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 64.7

    As this Sunday act is but a half-way measure, affecting females and persons under eighteen, we are able to resume a portion of our work without interference. To reinstate our full working outfit would, of course, be merely to buy in furnishings and machinery for the officers of the law to seize, and thus indirectly to pay fines as long as money lasted. Therefore we shall work our factory as we are able until the influence now working to secure the total prohibition of all Sunday work in factories closes our printing works entirely. Now, be it remembered, the Government of this United Kingdom has fully settled it that women cannot be factory operatives unless they regard the Sunday. When the logical end is attained it must apply to men as well as women. When that end is reached it will be impossible for us to operate a printing factory. In that case we would conform to no Sunday law in getting all our work done outside. In the present case we conform to no Sunday law in doing but a portion of our work ourselves. Such laws are wicked and only wicked, as exalting human against the Divine law. We may add that we have always had our heaviest work-the printing and binding of our larger books, sold by agents in the Kingdom and the colonies-done by the large printing houses in London. The work done in our own works is a printing of this paper, tracts, pamphlets, etc.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 64.8

    In its annual summary of the religious bodies in thr United States the New York Independent prints a report of the progress of our own work. The report states that during 1895 there were fifty-one prosecutions of Seventh-Adventists in the United States for Sunday work, and this too, was shown; without their having disturbed others. Thirty-nine convictions were secured, resulting in an aggregate of 1,161 days of confinement in jail, 541 days in the chain-gang, and in fines imposed amounting to more than 1,500 dollars.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 64.9

    By this very effort to obstruct, the Sabbath truth has been preached in America as never before. The report also states that during the year ninety-nine workers were sent abroad to twenty-six localities in other lands.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 64.10

    The Pope has offered to act as arbitrator between England and the United States. The Chronicle says that the Pope’s suggestion “cannot be called impertinent.” He has already acted as arbitrator in international disputes, and, whether he is accepted in the present instance or not, the time is not far distant when the inhabitants of the Vatican will be recognised as the final court of appeal in all great national affairs. Christ refused to be a judge and a divider in the affairs of men; but the man who claims to be His vicar only thrusts himself into the position, thus again exalting himself above God.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 64.11

    In Canada the school question is a pressing one. The Dominion Government has ordered Manitoba to provide separate schools for Roman Catholics, which that province refuses to do. The religious census of Canada shows 1,992,017 Roman Catholics, 839,815 Methodists, 754,193 Presbyterians, and 649,059 Church of England. In Manitoba the Protestant majority is large, and in recent elections, in which the school question was the main issue, the party against State-supported Catholic schools was returned to power with increased majorities.PTUK January 23, 1896, page 64.12

    Larger font
    Smaller font
    Copy
    Print
    Contents