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    1891

    January 1, 1891

    “The Divinity of Christ. No. 4” The Present Truth 7, 1.

    EJW

    E. J. Waggoner

    CHRIST AS LAWGIVER

    Since all must honour the Son even as they honour the Father, they must honour Him not only as Creator, but as Lawgiver. Says Isaiah: “The Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king, He will save us.” Isaiah 33:22. The statement of Christ, that “the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son; that all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father” (John 5:22, 23), is in itself evidence that Christ is lawgiver. Only the power that makes the laws can provide for their execution. We shall now proceed to give proof that the law was given by Christ, even as it is His righteousness.PTUK January 1, 1891, page 8.1

    Christ was the leader of the children of Israel from Egypt to Canaan. Perhaps there is no one who does not believe this in a general way; but it is susceptible of very clear proof. We quote first 1 Corinthians 10:4, which says that the fathers “did all drink the same spiritual drink; for they drank of that spiritual Rock that went with them [margin]; and that Rock was Christ.” This of itself is sufficient to settle the matter. Christ is the Rock upon which the church of God is built, and the Rock that shall grind the enemies of God to powder. Matthew 16:18; Ephesians 2:20; 1 Peter 2:4-8; Luke 20:17, 18.PTUK January 1, 1891, page 9.1

    He is the Rock upon which those who are lifted from the horrible pit of sin have their goings established. Psalm 40:1, 2; 1 Corinthians 3:11. It was He whom Israel rejected when He “lightly esteemed the Rock of His salvation.” Deuteronomy 32:15.PTUK January 1, 1891, page 9.2

    This is still more clearly shown by a comparison of Numbers 21:5, 6 and 1 Corinthians 10:10. The first text tells that “the people spake against God, and against Moses, Wherefore have ye brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? for there is no bread, neither is there any water; and our soul loatheth this light bread. And the Lord sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people; and much people of Israel died.” Here we see that the people spoke not only against Moses, their visible leader, but also against God, their invisible leader. Now in 1 Corinthians 10:9 Paul tells plainly against whom they were murmuring. He says: “Neither let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed of serpents.” So it was Christ who, with the name of God, was leading Israel, and it was against Him that they murmured.PTUK January 1, 1891, page 9.3

    Hebrews 3:5-11 also teaches the same thing very plainly. One has only to read it with care to see that Christ is the one whose voice the Holy Ghost warns us not to reject as did the fathers who tempted Him forty years in the wilderness. We quote:-PTUK January 1, 1891, page 9.4

    “And Moses verily was faithful in all his house, as a servant, for a testimony of those things which were to be spoken after; but Christ as a son over his own house; whose house are we, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end. Wherefore (as the Holy Ghost saith, To day if ye will hear His voice, Harden not your hearts, as in the provocation, in the day of temptation in the wilderness; when your fathers tempted Me, proved Me, and saw My works forty years. Wherefore I was grieved with that generation, and said, They do alway err in their heart; and they have not known My ways. So I sware in My wrath, They shall not enter into My rest.”PTUK January 1, 1891, page 9.5

    Since Christ was the leader of ancient Israel from Egypt to Canaan, it follows that Christ was the Angel of the Lord who appeared to Moses in the burning bush, and said:-PTUK January 1, 1891, page 9.6

    “I am the God of thy father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. And Moses hid his face; for he was afraid to look upon God. And the Lord said, I have surely seen the affliction of My people which are in Egypt, and have heard their cry by reason of their taskmasters; for I know their sorrows; and I am come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians, and to bring them up out of that land unto a good land and a large, unto a land flowing with milk and honey.” Exodus 3:6-8.PTUK January 1, 1891, page 9.7

    If any should object to this most natural conclusion, on the ground that the one here speaking calls Himself “I AM THAT I AM,” the self-existent One-Jehovah-we have only to remind him that the Father hath given to the Son to have life in Himself (John 5:26), that Christ asserted the same thing of Himself when He said, “Before Abraham was, I am” (John 8:5, 6); for which supposed blasphemy the Jews attempted to stone Him; and that by the prophet He is most plainly called Jehovah, in the following passage:-PTUK January 1, 1891, page 9.8

    “Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth. In His days Judah shall be saved, and Israel shall dwell safely; and this is His name whereby He shall be called, THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS;” literally, “Jehovah our righteousness.” Jeremiah 23:5, 6.PTUK January 1, 1891, page 9.9

    But to return to the main point, which is that Jesus was the leader of Israel from Egypt, the Redeemer of His people from bondage, as shown by the texts cited. Now connect the introductory words of the decalogue: “And God spake all these words, saying, I am the Lord thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. Thou shalt have no other gods before Me.” Exodus 20:1-3. This scripture positively identifies the leader of the children of Israel from Egypt, as the giver of the law from Sinai. If it is said that in the transaction we cannot separate the Father and the Son, we reply that that is just the point we are making. The Father and the Son cannot be separated in any transaction, for they are one. But just as the Son was the one by whom all things were created, so was He the one who declared to the people the law of Jehovah. Thus He is the divine Word. The Son declares the will of the Father, which is also His own will.PTUK January 1, 1891, page 9.10

    The fact that it was the voice of Christ that declared the law from Sinai, may be demonstrated in another way, as follows: “After speaking of the giving of the law, in Hebrews 12:18-21, the apostle says: “See that ye refuse not Him that speaketh. For if they escaped not who refused Him that spake on earth, much more shall not we escape, if we turn away from Him that speaketh from heaven; whose voice then shook the earth; but now He hath promised, saying, Yet once more I shake not the earth only, but also heaven.” Hebrews 12:25, 26.PTUK January 1, 1891, page 9.11

    This tells us that the same voice which shook the earth at the giving of the law from Sinai will once again shake the earth, and the heavens also. Now note the following texts, which show what takes place in connection with the second advent:-PTUK January 1, 1891, page 9.12

    1 Thessalonians 4:16: “For the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God; and the dead in Christ shall rise first.”PTUK January 1, 1891, page 9.13

    That it is Christ’s voice that is then heard is shown by John 5:26-29:-PTUK January 1, 1891, page 9.14

    “For as the Father hath life in Himself; so hath He given to the Son to have life in Himself; and hath given Him authority to execute judgment also, because He is the Son of man. Marvel not at this; for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear His voice, and shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.”PTUK January 1, 1891, page 9.15

    So it is the voice of the Son of God that opens the graves. Now we will compare a few more scriptures. In Psalm 2:6-8 we learn that Christ is to rule the heathen with a rod of iron, and to dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel. Isaiah says that “he shall smite the earth with the rod of His mouth, and with the breath of His lips shall He slay the wicked.” Isaiah 11:4. In Revelation 19:11-21 we have a description of the going forth of Christ with the armies of Heaven to contend with and destroy the wicked nations of earth; and in Jeremiah 25:30, 31 this battle is thus described:-PTUK January 1, 1891, page 9.16

    “The Lord shall roar from on high, and utter His voice from His holy habitation; He shall mightily roar upon His habitation; He shall give a shout, as they that tread the grapes, against all the inhabitants of the earth. A noise shall come even to the ends of the earth; for the Lord hath a controversy with the nations, He will plead with all flesh; He will give them that are wicked to the sword.”PTUK January 1, 1891, page 9.17

    Compare with this Revelation 19:15 and Isaiah 63:1-6, and read Joel 3:16: “The Lord also shall roar out of Zion, and utter His voice from Jerusalem; and the heavens and the earth shall shake; but the Lord will be the hope of His people, and the strength of the children of Israel.” These texts are sufficient to show that the shaking of the heavens and the earth is done by the voice of the One who has the controversy with the nations, and who is to destroy them and deliver His people. We have already seen that the voice that is to shake the heavens and the earth is the same voice that shook the earth at the giving of the law. But it is Christ who is to dash the nations in pieces, and so it is His voice that will shake the earth and also heaven. Therefore it was the voice of Jesus that spoke the ten commandments from the top of Sinai. The law is the truth (Psalm 119:142), and Christ says, “I am the way, the truth, and the life.” John 14:6. The ten commandments are God’s righteousness (Isaiah 51:4-7), and His will (Romans 2:17, 18); but they represent the righteous will of Christ as much as they do that of the Father; for He and the Father are one. E. J. W.PTUK January 1, 1891, page 9.18

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