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    PART III. HISTORY AND DOCTRINE OF THE MILLENNIUM

    THE ANALOGY OF FAITH

    “Having then,” says the apostle,” gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us; whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion (or analogy) of faith; or ministry, let us wait on our ministering.”-Romans 12:6.HDM 46.1

    Part First of this discourse opens the doctrine of a future state of eternal bliss in the earth, as it is announced in the Holy Scriptures, and as it was received and understood in the church, until the Reformation.HDM 46.2

    Part Second opens the doctrine of a future state of temporal bliss in this world, as it began to be understood by Muncer, Pfiffer, and King John of Munster, and as it was received and is held by the learned Whitby, the profound Edwards, and the canonical Encycloped. of Religious Knowledge.HDM 46.3

    Part Third promises to try the prevalent doctrine of this age by the analogy of the faith, and by the word of the blessed God, and also to discuss in brief the whole subject of a millennium.HDM 47.1

    In trying any doctrine of the church, we should have an eye to the analogy of the faith; for faith has a due proportion between its component parts, which, if observed by the teacher, offers a picture of hope beautiful to the most critical, and also to the least practised eye; and a picture of fear, appalling to every sinful heart. But if the proper analogy be disregarded, the several parts become distorted, and their hideous disproportions instantly offend multitudes, who would joyfully embrace the true faith, were it presented to their view in its own elegant symmetry and proper analogy. An image of the human face may represent every feature in its true place, but out of all due proportion, as in a painted mask; and, if assumed and presented earnestly to the life, it will involuntarily fill the beholder with unaffected horror, or with convulsive laughter; and a similar disproportion in the true faith may either stultify or offend the most devout hearers, notwithstanding the due parts are all there in their relative position, but only out of all christian proportion.HDM 47.2

    Where is the analogy of faith? Who can find and tell its dwelling-place?HDM 47.3

    “Lo here!” cries the Roman; “Lo there!” says the Lutheran. “See here!” exclaims the Episcopalian, or “See, you have it there!” adds the Baptist.-“Go not after them, nor follow them.” The Christ, the Son of the living God, he is the Author and Finisher of Faith. Whoever abides in him prophesies according to the proportion of faith, and hears according to the analogy of faith, and lives and walks according to the analogy of faith, directly following in the Master’s pathway, through tribulation to the grave, and from the grave to glory. Sunlight is on that pathway: while gloomy darkness broods over every other. This is the way the Master trod, through many sorrows to the tomb, and from, the tomb to the heavenly glory. Did He travel this way? Yes; even to mockery of his person as a king, and to abuse as of a slave; even to bear scourging and spitting and his own cross, until exhaustion produced fainting; until he was submissively nailed to the tree and crucified, like a lamb led to the slaughter, and laid with the rich in his death. He arose, he revived, he ascended into glory. And do the preachers of the cross well to conceive, that a period is approaching, in which mortals may hope to reign with him, with whom they have not suffered? Can a mortal follow the Lord Jesus to the heavenly glory, and not go the way he led? Should one attempt to follow after him to the same glory, by another way, that moment he ceases to be a follower of the Lord; and if, perchance, he should strike out a new path to this same glory, he is sure to be received as a robber at last, for coming to the heavenly fold by his own way, to the neglect of the royal highway and proper gate opened by his suffering Lord.HDM 47.4

    This view of the faith strikes you, whatever name you may bear, to be simple, pellucid, scriptural, and orthodox; those who would follow Jesus to the heavenly glory must go the way he went. Christian faith follows Christ, a pilgrim and sojourner, not having where to lay his head; a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief, even to death and the cold grave; thence by the resurrection to eternal life and joy. This is the analogy of faith, the standard of the Master’s life, by which being measured, the millennium of this world is found wanting and proved to be false; for it offers no counterpart to the temptation of the Master, or to the sorrows of the Master, or to the rejection of the Master, or to the agony and painful death of the Master.HDM 48.1

    The German reformers, in the Augsburg Confession, Art. 17, publicly stigmatize the hope of a church empire, “prior to the resurrection,” as a “judaizing notion;” and the Church of England, A. D. 1552, Art. 41, brand it a fable, and condemn those who revive and circulate the doctrine, as “opposed to the Holy Scriptures.” Let the great men and martyrs who framed those articles answer for it; wisdom is justified of her children; for the “judaizing notion” and “fable” bears no sort of analogy to the Christian faith: it offers no proportions corresponding to the life of Christ.HDM 48.2

    Faith follows the Lord Jesus through tribulation, to the cross, and to the grave; but the “notion” and “fable” which the reformers condemn, offers to the credulous to walk at case through this world, on flowery beds, for a whole millennium, without a thorn to pierce, or bramble to rend, or serpent to bite the well-fed flesh, and at last, to pass away in ecstasy to the higher glory, no one knows how. 2“They will die, or rather fall asleep, and pass into the invisible world.”-Hopk. Mill. State, p. 75.HDM 48.3

    Nothing can be more unlike the pathway our Master trod, and all his faithful have followed, from the apostles to our time, than this fabled mode of life in the carnal millennium. He was tempted by Satan; but the millenists cannot be, for in their day Satan will be close bound and shut up. He was afflicted with bodily hunger and want; but they cannot be, for all needful things are to be spontaneously produced. He was despised and forsaken of men; these cannot be, for all are to be of one heart of love in the millennium. He mourned over Jerusalem; but they cannot, for it will be both their joy, and the joy of the whole earth. He was rejected by the rulers; but they cannot be, for they are to be themselves the rulers in that day. He despised the shame of the cross; but they cannot, for they are to live joyfully all their days amid the triumphs of the cross. He died a painful death; but they are to “fall asleep, and pass into the invisible world.”HDM 48.4

    Faith has a beautiful analogy, and an unimpeachable standard, in the life and example of its Author and Finisher. He was born of a woman. He endured toil in mechanical labor; he encountered hunger and the tempter in the city and in the wilderness; he suffered reproach as a lover of wine and of good living, and yet was a pilgrim, without any certain dwelling-place. He was rejected and despised of men; was betrayed by a chosen and trusted follower; was mocked by his foes, was deserted by his disciples, was buffeted by the soldiers, was condemned by the rulers, and crucified with criminals, a slave’s death, as if for a base offence against the laws of God and of man. All faith must fall far below this standard, but it is not Christian unless it bears some analogy to it; and if any are without chastisement, of which all are partakers, then are they bastards, and not sons. 1Hebrews 12:8. “For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.” The millennial notion offers no analogy to this trial of the sons, and admits of proportion to the faith only of bastards; it presents no counterpart to the sufferings of Christ, and, therefore, can secure no part in the glory which is to follow.HDM 49.1

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