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    March 24, 1898

    “Elijah's Gospel and Ours” The Present Truth 14, 12.

    E. J. Waggoner

    In the work of Elijah, the prophet of God, we have an instructive example of preaching the Gospel “in demonstration of the Spirit and power.” In a time when Israel's king, Ahab, “did evil in the sight of the Lord above all that were before him,” and had openly established the worship of Baal at the court, so that the influence of the royal family was tending to lead the people into a idolatry, Elijah bore his testimony faithfully in behalf of the true God. His work reached its climax in the experience at Carmel, as set forth in 1 Kings xviii. 17-39.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 177.1

    ELIJAH SENT TO AHAB

    After the years of drought, during which Elijah had been hidden from the king and miraculously fed by the Lord, “the Word of the Lord came to Elijah in the third year, saying, Go show thyself unto Ahab.” “And it came to pass, when Ahab saw Elijah, that Ahab said to him, Art thou he that troubleth Israel? And he answered, I have not troubled Israel; but thou, and thy father's house, in that ye have forsaken the commandments of the Lord, and thou hast followed Baalim. Now therefore send, and gather to me all Israel unto Mount Carmel, and the prophets of Baal four hundred and fifty, and the prophets of the groves four hundred, which eat at Jezebel's table. So Ahab sent unto all the children Israel, and gathered the prophets together unto Mount Carmel. And Elijah came unto all the people, and said, How long halt ye between two opinions? if the Lord be God, follow Him: but if Baal, then follow him.”PTUK March 24, 1898, page 177.2

    THE TEST

    Then the test was arranged in accordance with the terms of which the prophets of Baal were to prepare a sacrifice, and then Elijah was to do the same, “and the God that answereth by fire, let Him be God. And all the people answered and said, It is well spoken.”PTUK March 24, 1898, page 177.3

    So the plans were carried out, and although the prophets of Baal “called on the name of Baal from morning even until noon,” and “prophesied until the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice, ... there was neither voice, nor any to answer, nor any that regarded.” Then Elijah “build an altar in the name of the Lord,” and offered a brief prayer recorded in verses 36, 37, and “then the fire of the Lord fell, and consumed the sacrifice.” “And when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces: and they said, The Lord He is the God; the Lord He is the God.”PTUK March 24, 1898, page 178.1

    THE QUESTION FOR DECISION

    The question to be decided then was, Who is the true God? and the Lord so revealed Himself in the ministry of His servant, Elijah, that the people were given an opportunity to see the difference between the true and false, and to make an intelligent decision in the matter. This was the Gospel as preached by Elijah. He pointed out that the real essence of idolatry was in forsaking the commandments of the Lord, and then in his ministry he revealed “the power of God unto salvation;” that power which would be sufficient to keep the people from forsaking or breaking the commandments of the Lord.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 178.2

    The same question has been before the children of men since the days of Adam, Who is God? and in every generation men have said with Pharaoh, “Who is the Lord, that I should obey His voice?” But in all these years the Lord has had His faithful servants who were preaching His Gospel, declaring His Word to all the people, giving all an opportunity to choose between the true and false.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 178.3

    THE SAME THING IN CHRIST’S DAY

    A departure from the true God reveals itself in different ways at different times in the development of “the great controversy between Christ and Satan.” In Elijah's time it showed itself in making “a grove” and in the open worship of a false god under a distinct name; at the time of the first advent of our Lord it showed itself in substituting the authority of man, “the tradition of the elders,” in the place of the Word of God in matters of faith and practice. It was with reference to this very thing that Jesus said: “Well hath Esaias prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoureth Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me. Howbeit in vain do they worship Me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men.” Mark vii. 6-8. To walk “according to the tradition of the elders,” when it is done knowingly, instead of according to the commandment of God, even though it is done by those who at the same time profess to be the children of God, is just as much a vain worship as to fall down before an image which is “a doctrine of vanities.”PTUK March 24, 1898, page 178.4

    JOHN THE BAPTIST AND ELIJAH

    Inasmuch, therefore, as there was the same departure from God at a time when the first advent of our Lord was drawing near as there was in the days of Elijah, although it was manifested with a different outward form, it was necessary that the same Gospel should again be preached with the same power. And so the Lord had said, through the prophet Malachi: “Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord: and he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.” Mal. iv. 5, 6. In Elijah's time they forsook the commandments of God and openly worshipped another God, under another name. In Christ's time they have forsaken the commandments of God, even though professing great regard for them, and had substituted the “tradition of the elders” in their place. The principle of departing from God by forsaking His commandments was the same. And so the needed Gospel message was sent by John the Baptist, of whom it was said: “And many of the children of Israel shall he turn to the Lord their God [just as Elijah did]. And he shall go before Him in the Spirit and power of Elias, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.” Luke i. 16, 17. And in the course of His ministry Christ said of John: “And if ye are willing to receive him, this is Elijah, which is to come.” Matt. xi. 14, R.V.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 178.5

    THE GOSPEL IN JOHN’S DAY

    In preaching the Gospel, the special message which was given to him to deliver, John the Baptist faithfully rebuked the people, even those who professed to be teachers of religion, for their departure from God; warned them against trusting in man for salvation (Matt. iii. 7-10); and urged them “that they should believe on Him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus.” Acts xix. 4. In doing this He was simply declaring the message due at that time, which he had found in the prophet Isaiah, “Behold your God! Behold the Lord God will come.” Isa. xl. 9, 10. Thus was fulfilled the command, “Prepare ye the way of the Lord.... And the glory of the Lord shall be revealed.” Isa. xl. 3-5.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 178.6

    THE APOSTASY AND THE GOSPEL IN THE LAST DAYS

    But now the second advent of our Lord draws nigh, and the present situation is thus described by the Scripture: “This know also that in the last days perilous time shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, ... lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God; having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof.” 2 Tim. iii. 1-5. By way of further description we also read: “Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of the devils.” 1 Tim. iv. 1. The “falling away” has come, as foretold by the great apostle to the Gentiles, the “man of sin” has been revealed, “who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.” 2 Thess. ii. 3, 4.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 178.7

    And as previous to the first advent of Christ a message went forth “in the Spirit and power of Elias” to those of whom Christ spoke as “not knowing the Scriptures nor the power of God” (Matt. xxii. 29), although they made a great deal of the “form of godliness,” so now in messages going forth, “the everlasting Gospel,” in fulfilment of the prophecy, “to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to Him; for the hour of His judgment is come: and worship Him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters.” Rev. xiv. 6, 7.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 178.8

    A careful reading of the thirteenth and fourteenth chapters of Revelation will show that it is describing a time when worship is being directed to some other than the true God (Rev. xiii. 4, 8, 12, 15; Chap. xiv. 9-10), and just then “the everlasting Gospel” is preached “with a loud voice,” just as in the time of Elijah and of John the Baptist, urging the worship of the true God. That the issue at stake now is the same as of old, is shown from the fact that those who receive this special message of “the everlasting Gospel” are described in verse 12 as following: “Here are they that keep the commandments of God.” In Elijah's time they forsook the commandments of God and followed Baal; in the time of John the Baptist they “reject the commandment of God” and follow the “tradition of the elder;” in our time there is “the form of godliness” without the power, and the same putting of the authority of man in the place of the plain Word of God. In all three cases God sends forth His Gospel message of warning, with a revealing of His power, in order that men may be “without excuse.”PTUK March 24, 1898, page 178.9

    “JEHOVAH, HE IS GOD”

    But there is a special force in the fact that the Gospel message now calls upon all men to “worship Him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters.” This demands a recognition of God as the Creator all things, and the “worship” which He requires is the worship of obedience. “This is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not grievous.” 1 John v. 3. But which commandment reveals God as Creator? The fourth, in which He says, “the seventh [not the first] day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God.... For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is [compare Rev. xiv. 7], and rested the seventh day; wherefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.” Ex. xx. 10, 11. God thus reveals Himself as the Creator of all things, and commands us to “remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy,” because our only hope of salvation is in His creative power. “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” Eph. ii. 8-10. “For thus saith the Lord that created the heavens; God Himself that formed the earth and made it: ... I am the Lord; and there is none else.... Assemble yourselves and come; draw near together, ye that are escaped of the nations: they have no knowledge that set up the wood of their graven image, and pray unto a god that cannot save.... Look unto Me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth; for I am God, and there is none else.” Isa. xlv. 18-22. He alone can save who can create, and that we may know Him as the Creator, and so know Him has “God of Israel, the Saviour,” He has given us His Sabbath. “And hallow My Sabbaths and they shall be a sign between Me and you, that ye may know that I and the Lord your God.” Eze. xx. 20. To know Him as the One who creates is to know Him as the One who sanctifies, and so the Lord says further: “Moreover also I gave them My Sabbaths, to be a sign between Me and them, that they might know that I and the Lord that doth sanctify them.” Eze. xx. 12.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 179.1

    THE SABBATH THE SIGN

    “The Lord Jehovah's Sabbath” is the seventh day of the week (Saturday) and not the first day of the week (Sunday). And the observance of the seventh day of the week (Saturday) is our recognition of the true God, “who created all things by Jesus Christ,” and our acknowledgement of our dependence upon, and trust in Him for salvation. It is the outward sign of our having entered into His rest through faith, of our having ceased from our own works as He did from His.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 179.2

    The observance of Sunday as a sacred day, or as being of any significance in the religion of Jesus Christ, rests upon no Scriptural authority and is a forsaking of the commandment of God, and a following of the traditions of men, just as truly as was the worship of Baal in Elijah's time, or “the washing of pots and cups” by the Pharisees. But the Elijah message is also going forth, saying now as of old, “If the Lord be God, follow Him: but if Baal, then follow him.” “By their fruits ye shall know them. Not everyone that saith unto Me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of My Father which is in heaven.” Matt. vii. 20, 21. Oh, that each one who reads these lines would say as did Joshua of old: “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”PTUK March 24, 1898, page 179.3

    “A Princely Gospel Worker” The Present Truth 14, 12.

    E. J. Waggoner

    A series of evangelistic meetings is being held in Copenhagen by Prince Oscar Bernadotte, second son of the King of Sweden. The Prince has long been an earnest Gospel worker. It is not a common thing to see or hear of an earthly prince preaching the Gospel, for “not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called;” yet no king on earth occupies so high a position as the most humble, true preacher of the Gospel. To be the ambassador of the King of kings is greater than to be a king.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 179.4

    “Baptizing Believers” The Present Truth 14, 12.

    E. J. Waggoner

    THE GAOLER’S HOUSEHOLD

    Among the last words of Jesus to His disciples were these: “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.” Mark xvi. 16. The reader cannot fail to notice that not only is believing made the condition of baptism, but it is the essential thing, which cannot be omitted. Believing and being baptized are the conditions of salvation, and he that believeth not shall be condemned. Without in the least depreciating the importance of baptism, it may be stated that there are instances where it is impossible for a person to be baptized; so the Saviour did not say that he that is not baptized shall be damned, but only he that does not believe.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 179.5

    The difference can readily be seen: in order to be baptized, a person must depend on another; he cannot baptize himself, no matter how much he desires baptism; but he depends on nobody else for believing. The Lord shows, therefore, that while baptism follows belief, and is of no value whatever without it, if the true belief is present the person will be saved, even though in an extreme case circumstances might render the active baptism impossible. Unbelief makes the formal act of baptism valueless; but nothing can invalidate true faith.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 179.6

    Faith therefore is the essential thing. When Philip preached Jesus to the eunuch, and the latter said, “What does hinder me to be baptized?” Philip answered, “If thou believest with all thine heart thou mayest,” thus indicating that it would be sin to be baptized without believing; for “whatsoever is not a faith is sin.” Rom. xiv. 23.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 179.7

    But “the Church,” not of Christ, but that which sets itself above Christ, has wholly reversed this order, making the act of baptism, or rather, a substitute for baptism, the essential thing, and faith entirely secondary. Thus it professes to baptize infants, who do not know what is being done to them, and makes their salvation dependent upon the performance of this rite. Then to satisfy those who wish to have the Bible at least named in connection with any religious practice upon which they are determined, they refer to those instances in the Bible where someone was baptized together with his “whole house.” Of course this proves nothing for infant sprinkling, since the Bible does not contradict itself; nevertheless many people are satisfied to assume that there “must have been” some babies in the house, who were “baptized” without believing.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 179.8

    Let us examine one of these cases, that of the gaoler at Philippi. Awakened by the earthquake which opened the prison doors, and assured by Paul that no prisoners had escaped, he “came trembling, and fell down before Paul and Silas, and brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved? And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shall be saved and thy house.” Acts xvi. 29-31.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 180.1

    One who does not read the entire passage, or who does not observe as he reads, might assume, as many do, although without reason, that the apostle assured the gaoler that if he believed both he and his house would be saved. What the text really says, is that both he and his house should believe, and so be saved. This is shown from the context.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 180.2

    Thus, the next verse tells us that “they spake unto him the Word of the Lord, and to all that were in his house.” This shows that all who were in his house were capable of hearing the Word of the Lord. Why did the apostle speak the Word of the Lord? In order that those who heard might believe; for “faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.” Rom. x. 17. The fact that the apostle spoke the Word of the Lord to all that were in the house, shows that all were capable of hearing the Word; and that shows that all could believe. If it had been only the gaoler himself who was to believe, there would have been no need of their speaking the Word to the others.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 180.3

    The next verse tells us that the gaoler “took them the same hour of the night, and washed their stripes; and was baptized, he and all his, straightway.” This shows that the Word was not spoken in vain, and that all who heard it believed, and so had a right to be baptized, according to the directions of Christ.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 180.4

    Does anybody say that we are guilty of indulging in assumption, when we say that the fact that all were baptized after having heard the Word of the Lord, shows that they all believed? Let us then read first 34: “And when he had brought them into his house, he set meat before them, and rejoiced, believing in God with all his house.” There we have the whole of the matter. This proves positively that when Paul said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shall be saved, and thy house,” all were included in the believing as well as in the promised salvation. We see that what he said was really this: “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you shall be saved; and the same is true of all your house.” Paul preached the Word to them all, in order that they might know what to believe, and then when all believed, they were all baptized.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 180.5

    “The Epistle to the Galatians. From Prison to a Palace” The Present Truth 14, 12.

    E. J. Waggoner

    Before proceeding to the close of this wonderful third chapter of Galatians, let us take a brief survey of the ground thus far covered in the chapter, that we may see just where we are.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 180.6

    Beginning with an expression of astonishment that the Galatians should be so foolish as to suppose that they themselves could perfect the mighty work which only the Spirit could begin, and that they could be induced to depart from the truth after they had seen Christ crucified among them, the Apostle at once brings them to the case of Abraham, which at once settles the whole question of the method of salvation, and that for all people. They themselves had received the Spirit of righteousness by faith, “even as Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness. And the Scripture foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the Gospel unto Abraham saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed. So then they which are of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.”PTUK March 24, 1898, page 180.7

    The blessing, we have seen, is the blessing of freedom from sin; but “as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse,” since the curse is upon all who do not continue in the book of the law, to do them, and “there is none that doeth good.” So all are in sin; but “Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us,” in hanging on the cross. He has redeemed us from the curse, that is, from the transgression of the law, in order that the blessing of Abraham might come on us, as upon all Gentiles, through faith. Faith in Christ crucified brings us into relationship with Abraham, and makes us sharers of his blessing, and no soul can ever get or hope for anything more. The blessing of Abraham is freedom from sin, through the Spirit of truth, who convinces the world of sin and of righteousness; and he who is free from sin is an heir of the sinless inheritance, even the “new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.” This is the promise of the Spirit.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 180.8

    How sure is this promise?—It is as sure as God's existence, for it was confirmed by an oath of God in Christ, and even a man's covenant, when it is once confirmed, cannot be changed in any particular, or added to; much less then can God's covenant, confirmed by His oath, be changed.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 180.9

    When was it confirmed?—It was confirmed to Abraham four hundred and thirty years before the Exodus from Egypt and the giving of the law from Sinai. Moreover it was made sure in Christ, who is the Seed, and the only seed, of Abraham. Therefore the speaking of the law four hundred and thirty years later cannot in any way affect the covenant, which was that righteousness and the everlasting inheritance of righteousness should be given to Abraham and his seed. The inheritance is not at all through the law, but solely by promise, “through the righteousness of faith.”PTUK March 24, 1898, page 180.10

    What then is the use of the law?—It was given because of transgression, because of lack of faith, as a witness to the fact that the seed of Abraham were in danger of losing the inheritance, and to show them the measure of the righteousness which they must have by faith. But it was in no sense against the promise of God to give them righteousness, since it was “in the hand of a Mediator,” even “the Man Christ Jesus,” who is the “One Mediator between God and men.” The promise contained the law, and does still contain it, so that the law, however loudly it thunders its infinite demands, simply shows us the greatness of the righteousness which God freely gives us in Christ. This office the law performs until the Seed comes, to whom the promise was made. This last fact, however, belongs to our present study. We come now toPTUK March 24, 1898, page 181.1

    THE TEXT FOR THE WEEK

    “But the Scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe. But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed. Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster. For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female; for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.” Gal. iii. 22-29.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 181.2

    All Shut Up in Prison .—Note the similarity between verses 8 and 22. “The Scripture hath concluded [that is, shut up], that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe.” “The Scripture foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the Gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.” We see that the Gospel is preached by the same thing-the Scripture-that shuts men up under sin. The word “conclude” means literally, “shut up,” just as is given in verse 23. Of course a person who is shut up by the law is in prison. In human governments a criminal is shut up as soon as the law can get hold of him; God's law is everywhere present, and always acted, and therefore the instant a man sins he is shut up. This is the condition of all the world, “For all have sinned,” and “there is none righteous, no, not one.”PTUK March 24, 1898, page 181.3

    “Under the Law.” -“Before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed.” We know that “whatsoever is not a faith is sin” (Rom. xiv. 23); therefore to be “under the law” is identical with being “under sin.” Let us get this clearly in mind. The Scripture hath shut up all under sin. What for?—“That the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe.” Thus we see that those who are shut up under sin are those who are not of faith. But until faith comes, we are kept shut up under the law. Now since we are under the law until faith comes, and whatsoever is not a faith is sin, it is evident that to be under the law means to be under sin. Those who are under the law, therefore, are those who are transgressing it.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 181.4

    The Law a Gaoler .—“So that the law hath been out tutor unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.” Verse 24, R.V. The words “to bring us” are marked both in the old version and the new as having been added to the text, so that we have dropped them out. It really makes no material difference with the sense whether they are retained or omitted. It will be noticed also that the new version has “tutor” in the place of “schoolmaster.” The sense is much better conveyed by the word that is used in the German and Scandinavian translations, which signifies “master of the house of correction.” The single word in our language corresponding to it would be gaoler. The Greek word is the word which transliterated is “pedagogue.” The word has come to be used as meaning “schoolmaster,” although the Greek word has not at all the idea of a schoolmaster. “Taskmaster” would be better. The idea here is rather that of a guard who accompanies a prisoner who is allowed to walk about outside the prison walls. The prisoner, although nominally at large, is really deprived of his liberty just the same as though he were actually in a cell. But without stopping longer over words, we have the fact stated that all who do not believe are “under sin,” “shut up,” “under the law,” and that therefore the law acts as their gaoler. It is that that shuts them in, and will not let them off; the guilty cannot escape their guilt. God is merciful and gracious, but He will not clear the guilty. Ex. xxxiv. 6, 7. That is, He will not lie, by calling evil good.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 181.5

    Only One Door .—Christ says, “I am the door.” John x. 7, 9. He is also the sheepfold and the Shepherd. Men fancy that when they are outside the fold they are free, and that to come into the fold would mean a curtailing of their liberty; but it is exactly the reverse. Outside of Christ is bondage, in Him alone is their freedom. Outside of Christ, the man is in prison, “holden with the cords of sins.” Prov. v. 23. “The strength of sin is the law.” It is the law that declares him to be a sinner, and makes him conscious of his condition. “By the law is the knowledge of sin;” and “sin is not imputed where there is no law.” Rom. iii. 20; v. 13. The law really forms the sinner's prison walls. They close in on him, making him feel uncomfortable, oppressing him with a sense of sin, as though they would press his life out. In vain he makes frantic efforts to escape. Those commandments stand as firm as the everlasting hills. Whichever way he turns he finds the commandment which says to him, “You can find no freedom by me, for you have sinned. “If he seeks to make friends with the law, and promises to keep it, he is no better off, for his sins still remain. It goads him and drives him to the only way of escape-“the promise by faith in Jesus Christ.” In Christ he is made “free indeed,” for in Christ he is made the righteousness of God.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 181.6

    The Law Preaches the Gospel. -“But,” says one, “the law says nothing of Christ.” No; but all creation does speak of Christ, proclaiming the power of His salvation. We have seen that the cross of Christ, “Christ and Him crucified,” is to be seen in every leaf of the forest, and, indeed, in everything that exists. Not only so, but every fiber of man's being cries out for Christ. Men do not realise it, but Christ is “the Desire of all nations.” It is He alone that “satisfies the desire of every living thing.” Only in Him can relief be found for the world's unrest and longing. Now since Christ, in whom is peace, “for He is our peace,” is seeking the weary and heavy-laden, and calling them to Himself, and every man has longings that nothing else in the world can satisfy, it is evident that if the man is awakened by the law to keener consciousness of his condition, and the law continues goading him, giving him no rest, and shutting up every other way of escape, the man must at last find the Door of safety. In Christ alone will the sinner find release from the lash of the law, for in Christ the righteousness of the law is fulfilled, and by Him it is fulfilled in us. Rom. viii. 4.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 181.7

    Faith Emancipates. -When faith comes we are no longer under the goaler, no longer in prison. “For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.” No longer slaves in chains, to be cast out, but sons, to be received into the Father's presence as rightful members of the family, and heirs of all that He possesses. Faith is freedom, for the Spirit is given to all that believe (John vii. 39); Eph. i. 13), and “where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty” (2 Cor. iii. 17).PTUK March 24, 1898, page 182.1

    When Does Faith Come? -Strangely enough, many have supposed that there was a definite time fixed for faith to come. This passage has been “interpreted” to mean that men were under the law until a certain time in the history of the world, and that at that time faith came, and then they were henceforth free from the law. The coming of faith they make synonymous with the manifestation of Christ on earth. We can not say that anybody ever thought so, for such an “interpretation” indicates utter absence of thought about the matter. It would make men to be saved in bulk, regardless of any concurrence on their part. It would have it that up to a certain time all were in bondage under the law, and that from that time henceforth all were free from sin. A man's salvation would, therefore, depend simply on the accident of birth. If he lived before a certain time, he would be lost; if after, he would be saved. Such an absurdity need not take more of our time than the statement of it. No one can seriously think of the idea that the apostle is here speaking of a fixed, definite point of time in the history of the world, dividing between two so-called “dispensations,” without at once abandoning it.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 182.2

    When, then, does faith come? “Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.” Rom. x. 17. Whenever a man receives the Word of God, the word of promise, which brings with it the fullness of the law, and no longer fights against it, but yields to it, then faith comes to him. Read the eleventh chapter of Hebrews, and you will see that faith came from the beginning. Since the days of Abel, men have found freedom by faith. The only time fixed is “Now,” “To-day.” “Now is the accepted time.” “To-day if ye will hear His voice, harden not your hearts.”PTUK March 24, 1898, page 182.3

    How Great Is This Freedom? -What is the freedom that comes by faith? That is easily settled by a few texts of Scripture. Christ dwells in the heart by faith, and makes one comprehend “the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; and to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge.” Eph. iii. 18, 19. This is the “large place” in which Christ causes the believer to walk at liberty. The whole universe is His. “He raiseth up the poor out of the dust, and lifteth up the beggar from the dunghill, to set them among princes, and to make them inherit the throne of glory.” 1 Sam. ii. 8. “For He hath looked down from the height of His sanctuary, from heaven did the Lord behold the earth; to hear the groaning of the prisoner; to loose those that are appointed to death.” Ps. cii. 19, 20. For “God, who is rich in mercy, for His great love wherewith He loved us, even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ (by grace ye are saved), and hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus,” “far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion.” Eph. ii. 4-7; 1:20, 21. This is “the glorious liberty of the children of God,” the liberty to which the law shuts us up, and towards which it drives us. So emphatically is it true that the law is not against the promise.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 182.4

    Putting on Christ by Baptism. -“As many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.” “Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into His death?” Rom. vi. 3. It is by His death that Christ redeems us from the curse of the law; but we must die with Him. Baptism is “the likeness of His death.” We rise to walk “in newness of life,” even Christ's life. See Gal. ii. 20. Having put on Christ, we are one in Him. We are completely identified with Him. Our identity is lost in His. It is often said of one who has been converted, “He is so changed you would not know him; he is not the same man.” No, he is not. God has turned him into “another man.” Therefore, being one with Christ, he has a right to whatever Christ has, and a right to “the heavenly places” where Christ sits. From the prison house of sin, he is exalted to the dwelling-place of God. This of course presupposes that baptism is with him a reality, not a mere outward form. It is not simply into the visible water that he is baptized, but “into Christ,” into His life.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 182.5

    One in Christ, the Seed. -“There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female; for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.” “There is no difference.” This is the keynote of the Gospel. All are alike sinners, and all are saved in the same way. They who would make a distinction on the ground of nationality, claiming that there is something different for the Jew than for the Gentile, might just as well make a difference on the ground of sex, claiming that women can not be saved in the same way and at the same time as men, or that a servant can not be saved in the same way as his master. No; there is but one way, and all human beings, of whatever race or condition, are equal before God. “Ye are all one in Christ Jesus,” and Christ is the One. So it is that “He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy Seed, which is Christ.” “But ye are all one in Christ Jesus. And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.” There is but one seed, but it embraces all who are Christ’s.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 182.6

    Christ not for Himself. -Christ did not live and die for Himself. It was not necessary that He should bear the curse of the earth in order to possess it as God; for it never passed out of God's ownership. Christ came as the Son of man, to win back as man, for man, that which man had lost. “He taketh on Him the seed of Abraham.” Therefore it is that it is impossible that the seed should be complete in Jesus alone, as a single individual. He is the representative man. God's purpose is to “gather together in one all things in Christ.” Eph. i. 10. So the seed includes every soul who can be induced to accept the Lord Jesus, and become one with Him. And this gives the glorious assurance that whatever He has is ours.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 182.7

    “Until the Seed Should Come.” -It needs not many words now to determine what is meant by the phrase, “till the seed should come to whom the promise was made.” We know what the seed is,-all who are Christ’s,-and we know that it has not yet come in its fulness. To be sure, Christ was once manifested on earth in the flesh, but He did not receive the promised inheritance, any more than Abraham did. Abraham had not so much as to put his foot on (Acts vii. 5), and Christ had not where to lay His head. Moreover, Christ can not come into the inheritance until Abraham does also, for the promise was “to Abraham and to his seed.” The Lord by the prophet Ezekiel spoke of the inheritance at the time when David ceased to have a representative on his throne on earth, and He foretold the overthrow of Babylon, Persia, Greece, and Rome, in these words: “Remove the diadem, and take off the crown; this shall not be the same; exalt him that is low, and abase him that is high. I will overturn, overturn, overturn it; and it shall be no more, until He come whose right it is; and I will give it Him.” Eze. xxi. 26, 27.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 182.8

    So Christ sits on His Father's throne, “from henceforth expecting till His enemies be made His footstool.” Soon will He come, but not until the last soul has accepted Him that can by any possibility be induced to accept salvation. When He comes to execute judgment, and to slay those who said, “We will not have this Man to reign over us,” He comes “with ten thousands of His holy ones.” Jude 14.PTUK March 24, 1898, page 183.1

    Then will the Seed be complete, and the promise will be fulfilled. And until that time the law will faithfully perform its task of stirring up and pricking the consciences of sinners, giving them no rest until they become identified with Christ, or cast Him off altogether. Do you accept the terms? Will you cease your complaints against the law which would save you from sinking into a fatal sleep? and will you in Christ accept its righteousness? Then, as Abraham's seed, and an heir according to the promise, you can rejoice in your freedom from the bondage of sin, singing:—PTUK March 24, 1898, page 183.2

    “I'm the child of a King,
    The child of a King,
    With Jesus my Saviour,
    I'm the child of a King.”
    PTUK March 24, 1898, page 183.3

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