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    May 23, 1895

    “Front Page” The Present Truth 11, 21.

    EJW

    E. J. Waggoner

    There is a right way and a wrong way of thinking, as there is of acting. The Apostle Paul mentioned an instance of the wrong way, when he said to King Arippa, “I verily thought with myself that I ought to do many things contrary to the name of Jesus of Nazareth.” Acts 26:9.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 321.1

    He thought this with himself, not with the Lord. If a man were obliged to furnish his own thoughts, he might be excused for taking a very bad course, as did Saul of Tarsus; he would be obliged to do evil, for thoughts are the seeds of actions, and of himself man can produce nothing good; for God is the source of all goodness.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 321.2

    But God has made provision for man by giving him His own thoughts, so that man may think the thoughts of God. “My thoughts are not your thoughts,” He says to us; “for as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55:8, 9. God has spread His thoughts before us in His Word. And if we do not think them, it can only be because we do not regard them as worth thinking.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 321.3

    How great is the condescension of God, in laying before all men a volume of His own thoughts! Having that volume, we are enabled to think with Him. That is the right way of thinking,—the way which leads ever to truth and righteousness. Thinking with Him, we think upon “whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report.” Philippians 4:8. What excuse shall we be able to present to God for thinking our own thoughts in preference to His?PTUK May 23, 1895, page 321.4

    “He Upbraideth Not” The Present Truth 11, 21.

    EJW

    E. J. Waggoner

    “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.” James 1:5.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 321.5

    In this statement of fact we have both encouragement and instruction-encouragement in approaching God, and instruction as to how we should treat those who are in need. We learn both lessons at once; for when we know how the Lord treats us, we know how we should treat others.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 321.6

    The natural man’s first impulse when there is a case of need is to inquire if the one in need is worthy. How often when in trouble we have heard the reproachful and unfeeling remarks, “Well, you brought it all upon yourself; you are suffering no more than you deserve.” Often the best comfort our friends give us is, “If you had listened to me, you would have been saved this trouble. I gave you advice and help, and you neglected the advice and wasted the assistance, and now I have nothing more for you; you must get out of your difficulty the best way you can.” How many of us have used similar language! Job’s friends have many successors.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 321.7

    Not so does God deal with the erring. If any lack wisdom, he giveth liberally, and “upbraideth not.” He does not say, “You ought to have known better.” No doubt we ought, but that does not help us now. He supplies the need, and leaves His goodness to lead us to repentance, and to preserve us from similar errors in future.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 321.8

    But one will say, “I know that I am to blame for the condition in which I find myself; I have brought all this evil upon myself, and so I have not the face to ask God to do anything more for me.” The promise of God was given for just such cases. If we were not to blame, there would be no need for the assurance that he upbraideth not. A just God would certainly not reproach us for what we could not help. The fact that He assures us that He upbraideth not is the encouragement to those who are blameworthy. We are worthy of blame, but reproaches will not supply our need. So it is enough for the Lord that we are now willing to receive wisdom from Him. “For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through Him might be saved.” John 3:17. With this assurance we draw nigh in confidence.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 321.9

    Here is the same blessed assurance made more emphatic. “Fools, because of their transgression, and because of their iniquities, are afflicted. Their soul abhorreth all manner of meat; and they draw near unto the gates of death. Then they cry unto the Lord in their trouble, and He saveth them out of their distresses.” Psalm 107:17-19.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 321.10

    We bring ills of all kinds upon ourselves. Our own foolishness has brought both physical and spiritual sickness upon us. We ought to have known better, but we did not. That makes no difference; we may nevertheless draw near, and ask with boldness. God will not upbraid us, and He will surely give to us. The fact that we acknowledge our foolishness gives us a strong claim upon His wisdom. How can any soul be discouraged, or charge God with heartless indifference to the needs of His children?PTUK May 23, 1895, page 321.11

    But this is not all. The same psalm has further comfort for us. Go back to the tenth verse and begin to read: “Such as sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, being bound in affliction and iron; because they rebelled against the words of God, and contemned the counsel of the Most High-therefore He brought down their heart with labour; they fell down, and there was none to help. Then they cried unto the Lord in their trouble, and He saved them out of their distresses. He brought them out of darkness and the shadow of death, and brake their bands in sunder.”PTUK May 23, 1895, page 322.1

    In the former case we had God’s kindness in helping those whose calamity was the result of their own ignorance and folly; in this text we have God’s goodness to those who have rebelled against Him, and who have despised His counsel. By their stubborn rebellion against His words, and their contemptuous rejection of His counsel, they have brought darkness and iron bondage upon themselves. They are chained in the dark cell. Yet in spite of their past rebellion, when they cry unto the Lord, He upbraideth not, but saves them out of their distresses, breaking their bonds, and bringing them out of the dark prison into light. “O that men would praise the Lord for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men!”PTUK May 23, 1895, page 322.2

    In the parable of the prodigal son we have this characteristic of God beautifully illustrated. Read the fifteenth of Luke, and note these points. 1. The son had received his full allowance from his father. 2. He went away and squandered his portion in riotous living. 3. When he went back to his father, he had not a penny left, but was in rags, and starving. 4. His father received him back with joy, running to meet him “when he was yet a great way off.” 5. Not a word of reproach was uttered. The father’s heart yearned for his son, and he was glad to see him coming back; reproaches might have sent him away again in despair. It is only lovingkindness that draws. 6. But this was not all. It was not enough for the father to receive him without reproaches, and allow him henceforth to abide at home portionless. No, the prodigal was received as a son, and restored to the position that he had before he went away. He was a son, and therefore an heir.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 322.3

    Behold in this a picture of God’s dealing with wayward souls. He has given us all things. He has supplied us bountifully. Having received His good gifts, instead of glorifying Him with them, we have wasted them. He has received no better, and we have not been the gainers. With time and talents wasted, we cannot now render unto Him the service that we ought to and that we wish we could. What then?—Why, He who redeems us teaches us also to redeem the time; He receives us as sons, makes us heirs of Himself, and supplies all our need, “according to His riches in glory.” Philippians 4:19. Rejoiced that we are even now willing to serve him, He spends no time in reproaches, but renews His gifts to us as freely as though we had never been wayward, rebellious spendingthirfts.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 322.4

    “O that men would praise the Lord for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men!”PTUK May 23, 1895, page 322.5

    “The Experience of Nebuchadnezzar” The Present Truth 11, 21.

    EJW

    E. J. Waggoner

    A LESSON FOR PRINCES AND PEOPLE

    Never was there a king who had a clear title to his throne than Nebuchadnezzar had. God Himself said: “I have made the earth, the man and the beast that are upon the ground, by My great power and by My outstretched arm, and have given it unto whom it seemed meet unto Me. And now have I given all these lands into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, My servant; and the beasts of the field have I given him also to serve him.” Jeremiah 27:5, 6.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 322.6

    Yet, like most men, Nebuchadnezzar did not recognise the hand of the Lord in His gifts. He was a heathen. Nevertheless God gave him a dream which forms one of the simplest, most easily understood, and yet most comprehensive prophecies in the Bible. In connection with that dream, God gave Nebuchadnezzar his first lesson.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 322.7

    When all Nebuchadnezzar’s magicians and astrologers were unable to tell him his forgotten dream, much less to interpret it, the faithful servant of God, made the whole thing plain. This was Nebuchadnezzar’s first lesson of God’s power. He was told that the secret was not in Daniel, but that the God of heaven alone could reveal secrets; yet he seems not to have comprehended this. He saw that Daniel was a valuable servant; but he evidently knew little more of God than the name.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 322.8

    THE SECOND LESSON

    The record of the third chapter of Daniel shows that although Nebuchadnezzar had been told that the God of heaven had given him a kingdom, and power, and strength, and glory, and although God’s servant had revealed to him things to come, he did not yet have any practical knowledge of God. For we find him making a colossal image of gold, and commanding all men to worship it under penalty of death.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 322.9

    What hope for one who would still remain an idolater after having received such wonderful light from heaven? Who would not have left him to destruction? Anyone would, except the merciful God. He reveals Himself to men, and if they are slow to learn, He is very patient with them, longsuffering, “not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” 2 Peter 3:9.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 322.10

    There were three of Nebuchadnezzar’s officers who would not worship his golden image. They were very respectful, but Nebuchadnezzar considered their steadfast loyalty to God as a defiance to him, forgetting that since he himself was but a pensioner on God’s bounty, he owed the same service to God that they did, and that their loyalty to God was the surest possible proof that they were the best subjects he had. So he said, “If ye worship not, ye shall be cast the same hour into the midst of a burning fiery furnace; and who is that God that shall deliver you out of my hands?” Daniel 3:16.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 322.11

    Clearly, Nebuchadnezzar did not yet know God. He had heard of Him, but it was only as a name. So when the three firmly refused to worship his image, he had been bound and cast into the furnace. And then he learned something of the difference between the God of heaven and the false gods. The furnace was so excessively hot that the idol-worshipping officers could not get near enough to it to throw the three Hebrews in without being themselves burned to death. Yet while the flames consumed those on the outside, it did not injure those who were in the midst of it. The king saw the three fall down bound in the midst of the furnace, and then saw four men loose, and walking about at their ease. The Lord Himself came down to fulfil in person His promise, “When thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.” Isaiah 43:2.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 322.12

    At the king’s command the three men came out of the furnace, “and the princes, governors, and captains, and the king’s counsellors, being gathered together, saw these men, upon whose bodies the fire had no power, nor was an hair of their head singed, neither were their coats changed, nor the smell of fire had passed on them.” Daniel 3:27.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 323.1

    “Then Nebuchadnezzar spake, and said, Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, who hath sent His angel, and delivered His servants that trusted in Him, and have changed the king’s word, and yielded their bodies, that they might not serve nor worship any god, except their own God. Therefore I make a decree, That every people, nation, and language, which speak any thing amiss against the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, shall be cut in pieces, and their houses shall be made a dunghill; because there is no other God that can deliver after this sort.” Verses 28, 29.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 323.2

    One excellent trait the king had, namely, that he was ready to acknowledge when he was wrong. He had a mind open to receive instruction. But his decree shows that he had not yet learned to know God. He knew that He was far greater than any gods of the nations, but he did not know Him as He is. If he had, he would never have made such a decree. Let us note a few points suggested by it.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 323.3

    In the first place, it shows that the king did not know the essential difference between the God of heaven and the idols of men. The latter cannot help themselves, and they have no attractiveness, and so men must needs be forced to worship them. But the Lord is a living God, and is altogether lovely, so that He is able to draw worshippers to Himself. He needs nobody with a sword to secure homage to Him. Nebuchadnezzar did not know that the only acceptable service to God is love, and that such service cannot be bought or forced.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 323.4

    In the second place the decree was equal to saying that the king himself ought to have been cut in pieces, because he had spoken against God. Every decree of that nature is a condemnation of God’s longsuffering. That law which says that those who do not render certain service to God shall be punished, virtually charges God with laxness. It declares that His longsuffering is altogether wrong. They who issue such decrees thereby invite God’s judgment upon themselves. They really say that God ought not to show mercy to anybody.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 323.5

    But Nebuchadnezzar meant well, although he acted ill. He was yet ignorant of God, but his heart was open to instruction; and so God gave himPTUK May 23, 1895, page 323.6

    THE THIRD LESSON

    This is narrated in the fourth chapter of Daniel. It is told by Nebuchadnezzar, and the contrast between this proclamation and the other is so marked that it shows that he had at last come to know God.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 323.7

    The story need not be repeated in detail. But we must read the introduction, which runs thus:—PTUK May 23, 1895, page 323.8

    “Nebuchadnezzar the king, unto all people, nations, and languages, that dwell in all the earth: Peace be multiplied unto you. I thought it good to show the signs and wonders that the high God hath wrought toward me. How great are His signs! and how mighty are His wonders! His kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and His dominion is from generation to generation.” Daniel 4:1-3.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 323.9

    And then the king, still in the glory of his kingdom, honoured by lords and counsellors, relates the story of his haughty pride, and his abasement by the God of heaven. David said, “Before I was afflicted, I went astray.” Job, after he had grievously suffered, said, “I have heard of Thee by the hearing of the ear, but now mine eye seeth Thee.” So Nebuchadnezzar learned in adversity the lesson that he did fail to learn in prosperity. When he had learned to know God indeed, he was again established in his kingdom. Then He said:—PTUK May 23, 1895, page 323.10

    “Now I Nebuchadnezzar praise and extol and honour the King of heaven, all whose works are truth, and His ways judgment; and those that walk in pride He is able to abase.” Daniel 4:37.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 323.11

    What a contrast with his previous decree! That was a threat of terrible death to all who spoke against God. This is simply personal experience-a public confession of sin and faith in God. It is unique among the State papers issued by kings. Before he knew God, he was ready to force people to worship Him; when he knew God, he was content to worship Him for himself, leaving his example and confession to influence others.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 323.12

    Can anyone be in doubt for a moment as to which one of Nebuchadnezzar’s decrees had the most effect in inducing people to serve God? Men cannot be forced to serve God, for His service is love and love cannot be forced. But love wins. Christ says, “If I be lifted up, I will draw all men unto Me.” John 12:32. “The Lord hath appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love; therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee.” Jeremiah 31:3. Tell of the goodness of God, and souls will be drawn to Him. When the song of praise unto our God is heard, many will trust in the Lord.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 323.13

    The lesson for kings and rulers is that God has called them to their exalted position for a purpose. That purpose is that they may glorify Him, and make His name widely known, but not by decrees designed to compel other people to worship Him. They are to glorify Him by their personal obedience, and by their own personal confession of His goodness. In short, they are to serve Him as preachers of righteousness. King Solomon had no higher title than that of “The Preacher.” Who could preach the Gospel so effectively as a devoted King, who when he speaks can reach the ears of millions, where an ordinary preacher could reach only a few hundreds? But the preacher on the throne is no more called of God to try to force others to be godly than is the humble preacher who sits on a shoemaker’s bench.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 323.14

    There are “not many mighty, not many noble” in the ranks of the disciples; yet there will be some, for the promise is that when the church arises and shines in the light of God, kings shall come to the brightness of its rising. Some will heed the message which God speaks to kings as to men with great opportunities for doing good, but yet as only men,—PTUK May 23, 1895, page 323.15

    “Be wise now therefore, O ye kings; be instructed, ye judges of the earth. Kiss the Son.”PTUK May 23, 1895, page 323.16

    “The Sure Word. An Image to the Papacy” The Present Truth 11, 21.

    EJW

    E. J. Waggoner

    Beginning with the eleventh verse of Revelation 13., we have in the remaining part of the chapter a description of the nature and work of “another beast” which the prophet saw “coming up out of the earth,” and existing contemporaneously with the “first beast.” This beast “had two horns like a lamb,” but “he spake as a dragon.” Of his work we read, “He exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men, and deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live.” Verses 12-14.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 324.1

    An image is a likeness of the thing to which it is made. An image to or “of” the “beast” (Verse 15), which we have seen represents Rome in its papal form, will be a likeness of the Papacy.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 324.2

    What constitutes the Papacy? The essence of any organisation of man consists in the principles upon which it is based. The papal officials, the body of its adherents, its seat of government, its institutions, and the means employed to do its work, have all been changing and transitory, but the Papacy itself has stood unchanged through the centuries, because its principles have remained the same.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 324.3

    That which led to the rise of the Papacy was the exaltation of man in the place of God. The “Bishop” of Rome was made “head over all the churches,” which office he continued to hold in doctrine and in appearance for centuries, and claims to hold to-day. But the true Head of the church is Christ. Ephesians 5:23; Colossians 1:18. The Apostle Paul, in speaking of the Papacy (2 Thessalonians 2:3, 4) says, “that man of sin,” the “son of perdition, 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.”PTUK May 23, 1895, page 324.4

    In claiming to be the church’s visible head, the Pope denies the invisible One who is its true Head; and in claiming to be the Vicar of Christ, he denies Him who said to His followers, “Lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” Matthew 28:20. In claiming the power to change the Sabbath and to exercise spiritual authority over men, the Papacy has likewise exalted man to the place of God.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 324.5

    Connected with this fundamental principle of the exaltation of the human to the place of God, and lending to it the aid of the civil authority, was the principle of the union of Church and State. The Bishop of Rome claims the right to be the adviser of kings in the realm of secular affairs, as well as the director of mankind in spiritual things. He claimed the right to command the secular arm for the support of papal dogmas and the punishment of “heretics.” In brief, the Papacy is an apostate spiritual power in which man occupies the place of God, dominating the State for the purpose of governing the consciences of men; and the living image of the Papacy will be like it. It will be a power speaking contrary to the Word of God, and using the civil arm to enforce its decrees upon the conscience.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 324.6

    Of the work of the beast with two horns we read further that “he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed. And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads; and that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.” Verses 15-17. The image first formed from the principle of the Papacy, and then is given life by the power of the two-horned beast, which causes those principles to be put into practical effect.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 325.1

    The image is made by “them that dwell on the earth.” As it is not the Papacy itself, though like unto it, it must be formed by those not reckoned as papal adherents; in other words, among those counted as Protestants. That the principles of the Papacy largely prevail among those so counted is an evident fact to-day. The tendency Romeward among them, both in doctrine and practice, is too plain to be denied. There are “Protestant” popes as well as the Catholic ones,—men who put themselves in the place of God by making themselves arbiters upon spiritual questions, speaking contrary to God’s Word. It is natural that it should be so in this world. Popery is the religion of human nature, and the religion of all systems of Paganism. It is easier for one to go to an arbiter than to settle the difficulty himself; easier-to human nature-to obtain the pronouncement of the minister upon a question of right or wrong than to seek information from the Word of God. It is easier to get from him an “interpretation” of the Scripture than to settle its meaning by personal study and prayer; especially when the interpretation absolves one from what would otherwise be regarded as a disagreeable duty. But this is nothing more than a papal indulgence in disguise. Many a conscience-troubled Protestant has in this way been “absolved” from obligation to observe God’s Sabbath.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 325.2

    SEEKING POLITICAL POWER

    There is also throughout the Protestant world a visible movement on the part of the churches toward a close alliance with the civil power. The churches are seeking to regenerate the world by politics. On the Continent, in the colonies, and in our own country, the forces are at work which are to bring the world and the church together in a confederacy to make men religious by the power of human laws. In 1892, in the United States the churches dictated with threats their terms to Congress in the matter of closing the World’s Fair on Sunday, and Congress obeyed; and prominent clergymen exultingly said, “We hold Congress in our power.” Associations formed in America for the purpose of securing the enforcement of Sunday laws are making their power felt and their influence respected by politicians of every class. The very churches themselves are being organised into political agencies to exercise a controlling influence at the polls.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 325.3

    And what already exists there is only what must follow in other countries from the logical development of the doctrine of Sunday laws. The first-day sabbath being a human institution, has only human power to give it force. No command can be read for it from the Scripture, no weapon from God’s armoury used in its behalf. Its observance must be secured by the power of men, which naturally finds expression in human law and the force of the secular arm. If Sunday is to be generally observed as a day of rest, it must be by a close alliance of Church and State, or of religion and the State, which is the same thing.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 325.4

    And now, in the face of this movement in the world, which rests upon the power of man, God is calling attention to His power as Creator, and to His Sabbath both as the sign of allegiance to Him. This is the test to-day. The servants of God will have His mark in their foreheads; they will be men of faith, believing His Word. God cannot be worshipped by mere outward forms without faith within. But men may do homage to the Papacy not only with their minds, by believing in the sign which it sets forth, but outwardly in paying deference to the Sunday at the command of men. The mark of the beast may be received either in the forehead or in the hand. It is thus that even infidel and irreligious organisations may not only receive the mark of the papal power, but join in enforcing it. The Socialists of Germany, for example, who are generally antichristian, are working for the enforcement of Sunday rest. It matters not that they mean only to compel a general holiday. The day is taken because it is the day which the Papacy has established, and behind the powers of this world is the god of this world, the spirit that works in the hearts of all who are not Christ’s followers, working to exalt the rival to God’s Sabbath. As the Catholic Church says:—PTUK May 23, 1895, page 325.5

    The observance of Sunday by the Protestants is an homage they pay, in spite of themselves, to the authority of the Church.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 325.6

    And it is true of the atheist or non-Christian, who follows the customs of men in preference to the way of the Lord and the example of Jesus Christ, as it is of the professed Protestant.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 325.7

    THE PRESENT TRUTH

    The solemn fact is now clearly before us, that the third angel’s message of Revelation 14:9-12 is a message for our day and for us. The controversy between the Sabbath of the Lord and the sabbath of that power which opposes and exalts itself above Him, is assuming greater proportions in every land, as the claims of the true Sabbath are more widely and fully presented. Everywhere men are making the choice which determines upon which side of the controversy they will stand. The omnipotent One has set His hand to the work, and it cannot be turned back.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 325.8

    However great the seeming disparity of forces which the controversy presents to human eyes, the issue is not for a moment in doubt. We are told what will be the end. The prophet who beheld these things saw further and beheld heaven opened, and the armies of heaven issue forth under the leadership of their Divine Captain. “His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns; and He had a name written, that no man knew, but He Himself. And He was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God. And the armies which were in heaven followed Him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. And out of His mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it He should smite the nations; and He shall rule them with a rod of iron; and He treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.” Revelation 19:11-15.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 325.9

    Then the prophet “saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against Him that sat on the horse, and against His army.” On earth, the vast majority are ranged on the side of the “beast,”—the side of the enemies of God. Then comes the final scene. “And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.” Verse 20. And in this lake men meet the “second death.” Revelation 21:8.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 325.10

    The all-important question is before the us. Shall we be sealed with the seal of the living God (Revelation 12:2, 3), or shall we receive the mark of the beast, and drink of the wine of the wrath of God, poured out without mixture into the cup of His indignation? Shall we brave the wrath of man, or the wrath of God? Shall we have our part in the lake of fire, or share in the eternal triumph which awaits God’s truth? It is not sufficient for us now to point to the Christians who in past days have followed the tradition of the Papacy thinking it the truth of God. The Lord judges men according to the light they have. The darkness of the papal errors have obscured the vision of men, and so far as men have followed the light as they saw it, “the times of this ignorance,” we may say, “God winked at; but now commandeth all men everywhere to repent.” The Lord is coming, and therefore the everlasting Gospel of the power of God to save is to go to every nation and kindred, to gather out those who are willing to stand upon the Word of God alone and to accept of His salvation from sin.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 326.1

    “News of the Week” The Present Truth 11, 21.

    EJW

    E. J. Waggoner

    -It appears that work is to be resumed on the Panama Canal. A despatch from Colon states that a thousand labourers have been engaged for work on the enterprise.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 334.1

    -A curious relic of the epoch of Peter the Great has been presented to the museum of Astrachan. It is a metallic token granting the bearer permission to wear a moustache and board.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 334.2

    -It has been discovered in Ireland that peat can be reduced to fine fibre and spun into woollen cloth. Also, when compressed, peat, it is said, forms a good substitute for ebony, and can be carved into trinkets.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 334.3

    -A committee has been formed and a subscription opened with the object of building a mosque at Paris. The object is to establish closer relations between the capital and the Moslem populations under French rule.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 334.4

    -By means of telephones and an apparatus for augmenting sound, the whole of the service conducted in the Baptist Temple, Philadelphia, is distinctly heard by audiences in all the smaller halls which surround the main building.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 334.5

    -From the mahogany forests of Africa it is said that 12,000,000 foot of timber have already men cut and exported, and they promise to yield an immense revenue to the British and French colonists who have seized open the territory.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 334.6

    -A careful estimate by a writer in a Melbourne paper puts the total amount of the public and private debts owing to Great Britain by the seven Australasian Colonies at ?815,000,000, and the amount of interest paid last year at ?12,750,000.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 334.7

    -It is reported that the Salvation Army is about to undertake an energetic, campaign in the Far East, and that the initial movement will take place in China, where the leader of the movement is a Chinaman and a member of the Salvation Army in San Francisco.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 334.8

    -The movement in favour of an eight-hours’ day in Austria is showing fresh signs of life. It has for some years been passively included in the programme of the Labour Party, and now the Austrian miners seem determined to use every effort for enforcing this demand upon their employers.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 334.9

    -News received from Pekin states that Japan has renounced the Liao-tung Peninsula without any demand for compensation, and this liberality is greatly appreciated and praised in China. France, Germany, and Russia have offered to negotiate the loan necessary to enable China to pay the indemnity due to Japan.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 334.10

    -In a manifesto recently issued by the Tailors’, Machinists’, and Pressers’ Union, respecting the making of clothing required for Government departments, it was affirmed that the average earnings of the men for working from 7 A.M. till midnight daily are only 12s. a week, and the average earnings of the woman only from 5s. to 7s. per week.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 334.11

    -It has been calculated that it would take Prince Bismarck, working eight hours a day with unflinching regularity, about eight months to read all the letters, postcards, and telegrams of birthday congratulations that have reached Friedrichsruh. If he tried to answer them all he would have to spend another year and a half over the job.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 334.12

    -For some time past some parties in the United States have been experimenting with a view of making stockings and gloves from paper, and it is announced that the former can be made so as to sell for three halfpence a pair. Solidity and durability are given the texture by a sizing bath of potato starch and tallow, and when finished its appearance is said to be strikingly like the articles made in the ordinary way.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 334.13

    -Recently a lady in Italy went to a spiritualistic seance to consult a “medium” who had promised to communicate with her dead son. By some mishap, instead of the spirit coming forth, flames and sulphurous fumes issued from the back of the cabinet. The mother, regarding the blaze as an indication that her son was suffering for his sins, went raving mad, and is not likely to recover, The medium is to be prosecuted.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 334.14

    “Back Page” The Present Truth 11, 21.

    EJW

    E. J. Waggoner

    Next month the Roman Catholics are expected to lay the foundation stone of a great cathedral at Westminster.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 336.1

    The revival of the power of the Papacy is one of the most striking sign of the times, and a sign of the nearness to the end. It is when Rome shall say again, “I sit a queen, and am no widow, and shall see no sorrow,” that her plagues will come; “for strong is the Lord God who judgeth her.” Revelation 18:7, 8.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 336.2

    The Bible Society adds some new tongues every year to the number in which the Scriptures appear. This year they expect to publish the first Pashtu Bible for Afghanistan, and also one in the vernacular of the Mohammedan hill tribes of the district about Chitral.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 336.3

    The word that came to Belshazzar was, “Thou art weighed in the balances, and art found wanting.” Daniel 5:27. That is, when weighed in the balances, he was found to weigh nothing. Why was this?—Because he trusted in gods that were the work of men’s hands. They were nothing, and the Scripture says, “They that make them are like unto them, so is every one that trusteth in them.” Psalm 115:8. He trusted in nothing, and so became nothing.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 336.4

    “Surely men of low degree are vanity, and men of high degree are a lie; to be weighed in the balance, they are altogether lighter than vanity.” Psalm 62:9. Before God all nations are counted as “less than nothing, and vanity.” Isaiah 40:17. Men necessarily become like that in which they trust. Therefore the man in this state who trusts in himself is nothing, and when weighed in the balances will be found wanting.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 336.5

    “The Lord is a God of knowledge, and by Him actions are weighed.” 1 Samuel 2:3. The balances of the Lord, by which actions are weighed, is His law-His own righteous character. When Christ dwells in the heart by faith, the law of God is in the heart, and the actions are prompted by it. Then the man when weighed will be found “to the praise of the glory of His grace.” Therefore “trust ye in the Lord for ever, for in the Lord Jehovah is everlasting strength.”PTUK May 23, 1895, page 336.6

    One of the speakers at a May meeting the other day aptly said: “Paul knew that the Gospel was foolishness to the Greeks, and a stumbling-block to the Jews-but he neither made an attractive musical service nor a Pleasant Sunday Afternoon. No, he preached the whole Gospel, and the result was that to those who believed the word was the power of God unto salvation.”PTUK May 23, 1895, page 336.7

    The Psalmist prayed, “Let the beauty of the Lord our God be upon us.” Psalm 90:17. It is the prayer of the Spirit, for us as well as for him and ancient Israel. With it take the words of the Spirit by the prophet Isaiah: “Arise, shine, for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee.” Isaiah 60:1. And this glory “shall be seen upon thee.” Shall we then spend time and strength and means in trying to adorn and beautify ourselves? or shall we let the Lord put upon us His beauty? not beauty of person to attract attention to ourselves, but the beauty of holiness to attract attention to Himself.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 336.8

    While the development of the Papacy, “the mystery of iniquity,” is a sign of the times, the progress of the Gospel, “the mystery of God,” is also a sign of the coming of the Lord. For “this Gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.” Matthew 24:14. In the progress of the truth in all the world, as it calls upon men to build upon the Word of the Lord, and in the progress of error, as it leads men to trust in the traditions of men and their own selves, we have a double sign that the coming of the Lord draweth nigh, and is even at the door.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 336.9

    Many laugh at the idea that Rome is gaining power, but it is because they have not watched the drift of affairs. The Christian said last week, basing its remarks on the report of a Rome correspondent of Evangelical Christendom:—PTUK May 23, 1895, page 336.10

    The vigour of the Papacy is a fact as tremendous as it is dangerous. Especially is this evident in Rome, where during recent years the Evangelical movement has been so active. The Pope has lost temporal power, but he wields a wider sway; whereas in 1870 Church properties were confiscated and religious orders abolished, it is now stated that the possessions have been regained, and the influence of the Vatican is practically what it was before Victor Emmanuel entered Rome!PTUK May 23, 1895, page 336.11

    Its political power is increasing in every nation, and a more startling sign than this is the rapid development of purely papal principles in circles outside the Roman Catholic Church.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 336.12

    From our California contemporary, the Signs of the Times, we learn that our mission ship, the Pitcairn, recently sailed from San Francisco on its fourth voyage to the islands of the South Seas, with a fresh core of workers who will be left in various island groups where the natives are inviting help. The Pitcairn, as many of our readers know, was named after Pitcairn Island, of Bounty fame, all of whose inhabitants accepted the truth about ten years ago, and directed the special attention of our Society to the islands of the South Pacific.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 336.13

    “Blessed are the peacemakers; for they shall be called the children of God.” A peacemaker is not one who steps in between two persons or parties who are fighting, and makes them cease their battle. One may do that and not be a peacemaker, since people may cease fighting and still not be at peace. To avoid strife is a far more effectual way of making peace than to leave it off after it is begun. The peacemaker, therefore, is the one who is himself at peace. He is the one in whose heart is the law of peace, and whose mind is stayed on God. “The fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.”PTUK May 23, 1895, page 336.14

    In a recent lecture Mr. Curzon told of the remarkable development of civilisation in Afghanistan, particularly shown in the capital, where the Ameer has introduced improvements and established workshops after European models. The sad side of it all is that in copying after European enterprise they copy the great characteristic of the so-called Christian Powers, and their shops appear to be mainly devoted to the manufacture of guns, shells, and all the munitions of war. The Asiatic nations are waking up and learning the arts of war from the European, getting ready for the battle of the great day of the Lord.PTUK May 23, 1895, page 336.15

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