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    THE RESURRECTION

    The sentiments we have advanced in the preceding pages, deprive us of all hope of future life aside from the resurrection. And as this is the point where the Christian is to receive the accomplishment of his hopes, and the true event to which our faith should reach forward for the reward of obedience, we shall approach the investigation of it with pleasure. We shall claim in this investigation, that the resurrection is literal.MPC 125.1

    There are some that would talk about the resurrection of the soul in heaven, or a spiritual resurrection, that is a resurrection from death in trespasses and sins, or being made holy. But the resurrection of which we wish to speak in the resurrection of those that sleep in their graves. And in claiming that it is literal, we wish to be understood. We claim that the resurrection brings up the man, possessing the same identity as the man that goes down into the grave. We shall not attempt to follow the fine spun philosophical argument in regard to the passage of matter into the formation of other bodies, after decomposition. We consider it no objection to the doctrine of the resurrection. If the particles of matter of which Abraham, Isaac and Jacob were composed have entered into the formation of other bodies, God has promised, that they shall live again.MPC 125.2

    If in the resurrection, three men are brought up, preserving the identity of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, they will be Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and no one else in the universe; for they will think the same thoughts which they thought, remember that they had performed the same acts which they performed in their lives, and realize that they are the beings, that (as it seems to them) a short time before were struggling in the agonies of death.MPC 126.1

    This same class of reasoners who claim that the matter of our bodies enters into the formation of other bodies when decomposed, contend that there is a constant change going on while we are living. Some claim that our bodies are all renewed about once in the space of seven years. According to their reasoning, my body has changed three times, at least, since the period of my remembrance. But still I am conscious that I am the same being that I was before. What produces this consciousness? I answer, the memory of those events connected with my life in past time. So in the resurrection, the remembrance of the events of this life at the period of the resurrection will produce in us the consciousness that we are the same beings.MPC 126.2

    The mass of minds at the present time cavil with the doctrine of a literal resurrection, and are ready to inquire, as Paul said, “some man will say, How are the dead raised up?” To such we reply, They are raised by the power of God. Says Christ, “God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.” It is a lamentable fact, that even the greater portion of the professed church of Christ at the present time deny the doctrine of the resurrection of the body.MPC 126.3

    We design in the investigation of this subject to follow the testimony of Scripture. Paul testified of himself on this matter in Acts 24:14, 15, as follows: “After the way which they call heresy, so worship I the God of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the law and in the prophets; and have hope toward God, which they themselves also allow, that there shall be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and unjust.” Before we can understand fully the means God has employed to bring about the resurrection, it will be necessary to inquire a little farther in regard to the condition of those who are to be raised.MPC 127.1

    Where are the dead? For an answer to this inquiry, we will look at the testimony of Jeremiah concerning Rachel. Jeremiah 31:15-17. This weeping of Rachel was fulfilled in the weeping of the bereaved mothers at the time Herod slew all the children in the land. See Matthew 2:15. But we will quote the testimony. “Thus saith the Lord; A voice was heard in Ramah, lamentation, and bitter weeping; Rachel weeping for her children refused to be comforted for her children, because (they have gone to heaven? No. To hell? No, but) they WERE NOT.” What! were they out of existence!MPC 127.2

    Our ministers at the present day would not have told those mothers so, if they had been called to preach the funeral sermons of their children. Their consolation would have been something like this: “Thou art mother of angels then. They are yet yours, only gone before! Rejoicing in the heavenly pastures, guarded by the good Shepherd—little lambs of the heavenly fold! Earth, then, is less attractive. Those invisible little spiritual cords twine around you and draw your soul upward. Like ‘still small voices’ ever whispering, ‘come to the world where spirits live!’ Mother of cherubs! Walk softly! Little angel-eyes watch thy steps! Spirit-forms stoop to listen! Keep thy soul free from earth; thou shalt go to them, though they cannot return to thee!” And it is very probable that before finishing their discourse they would tell those fond mothers, that “An enemy hath done this.”MPC 127.3

    What consolation did God offer to those weeping mothers whose children were not. Read Verse 16; “Thus saith the Lord: refrain thy voice from weeping, and thine eyes from tears: for thy work shall be rewarded, saith the Lord: and they shall come again FROM THE LAND OF THE ENEMY.” Why? says one, I thought children went right to heaven. Is that the land of the enemy? If it is, then the children went there. Well, say you, I can’t admit that those children, under two years old, went to that hell we hear so much about. Neither can I, bit I believe they went where the Bible says they did, viz., “To the land of the enemy.” Where? Into the grave. Verse 17, The Lord says, “And there is hope in thine end, saith the Lord, that thy children shall come again to their own border.”MPC 128.1

    From the above we learn, that the dead go to the land of the enemy instead of heaven. We now inquire, Who is the enemy, into whose land they have passed? We may gain an answer to this inquiry by reading Paul’s testimony to the Hebrews [Chap 2:14]. “Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same: that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is THE DEVIL. From this we learn, that the Devil had the power of death. Then the enemy into whose land men pass at death is the Devil.MPC 128.2

    He is brought to view by the testimony of Isaiah [Chap 14:12.] “How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!” Lucifer has been explained by most commentators to be the Devil. Verse 18. “For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God. I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the North, I will ascend above the heights of the clouds: I will be like the Most High. Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit. They that see thee shall narrowly look upon thee, and consider thee, saying, Is this the man that made the earth to tremble, that did shake kingdoms: that made the world as a wilderness, and destroyed the cities thereof; that opened not the house of his prisoners? (Margin. Or, did not let his prisoners loose homewards.”)MPC 129.1

    We have already shown upon another page, that the grave is called a prison. From the testimony above we learn that the Devil had power over those that had passed into the prison. And he “let not the prisoners loose homewards.” Then those who are to be raised are under the power of the Devil. In the grave the worthies of past ages have been sleeping. Over them Satan has triumphed, as one after another they have sunk to the tomb. Like an enemy returning from the field of battle with a great spoil, he rejoices as he hides away that precious treasure (the saint of God) in the earth. But they are the Lord’s. Although they are prisoners in the land of the enemy, God has a care for them and will resort to some means to get them out of the prison.MPC 129.2

    Said the woman of Tekoah, when she disguised herself and came before David, (as recorded in 2 Samuel 14:14,) “For we must needs die, and are as water spilt on the ground, which cannot be gathered up again: neither doeth God respect any person; yet doth he devise means that his banished be not expelled from him.” In the above is a clear testimony concerning the condition of the dead. 1st. They are “as water spilt on the ground, which cannot be gathered up again.”MPC 130.1

    2. They are represented as “banishedfrom the Lord. A very different sentiment from that which is commonly taught, that God’s people go immediately into his presence. If it is true that the dead go into the presence of the Lord, David, the one before whom the woman of Tekoah was speaking, must have understood it. He says, [Psalm 17:15,] “I shall be satisfied, (when I go to sleep? No, but) when I awake with thy likeness.” He could not have believed that he should enter into the presence of God when he died; because he says [Psalm 16:11,] “Thou wilt shew me the path of life; (the resurrection,) in thy presence is fullness of joy; at the right hand there are pleasures forever more.” If David was going into the presence of God at death, then he is represented as looking forward to the resurrection for satisfaction, when he had fullness of joy before. Or in other words, he could be where there was fullness of joy, and not be satisfied.MPC 130.2

    3rd. In the testimony of this woman of Tekoah, we learn if God does not devise some means to redeem his people, they will not only remain “banished,” but they will be “EXPELLED FROM HIM.”MPC 131.1

    We now inquire, What means has God devised? What is necessary to be done? Something to get the prisoners out of the enemy’s prison. This cannot be done by compromise; for “he lets not his prisoners loose homewards.” It must then be done by conquest. To make this plain we will suppose a case.MPC 131.2

    Suppose, during a contest between two nations, we will say England and America, that England getting somewhat the advantage of the American army, captures quite a number of prisoners who are soon confined in the Queen’s dominions. The British government still retaining hostile feelings, will not give them up. We cannot enter into a compromise so as to get them. There is but one expedient to obtain those who are banished, that is, to raise a company strong enough to conquer all opposing elements, march to the prison and take them by force.MPC 131.3

    Mark the testimony of Christ, concerning what is necessary to be done to accomplish this work. Matthew 12:28, 29. The charge had been brought against him, that he cast out devils through Beelzebub the prince of the Devils. He says, “If I cast out Devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come nigh unto you. Or else, how can one enter into a strong man’s house, and spoil his goods, except he first bind the strong man? and then he will spoil his house. “The strong man spoken of here we may see by the connection, represents the Devil. Now notice a corresponding testimony in Luke 11:21, 22. “When a strong man armed keepeth his palace, his goods are in peace: but when a stronger than he shall come upon him, and overcome him, he taketh from him all his armour wherein he trusted, and divideth his spoils.” This testimony clearly represents the Devil, who has usurped authority over the earth. The spoils he takes from the army of the saints, he puts in his prison house (the grave). But Christ a stronger than he is coming upon him, and he will take the spoil.MPC 131.4

    According to the testimony we have already quoted from Hebrews 2:14, Christ is to conquer the devil through death. Read the following testimony from Isaiah 53:10-12. “Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in his hand. He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.” Here it is promised that Christ shall divide the spoil with the strong. When he has bound the strong man he will raise the saints of God from their dusty beds, while the wicked dead will be left with Satan to be destroyed with him at last.MPC 132.1

    We have a view of the fulfillment of this work in Revelation 20:1. “And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand.” We understand this was Christ. He is called an angel, [see 1 Thessalonians 4:16,] And he is the one that has the key of the bottomless pit, (death.) See Revelation 1:18. “I am he that liveth, and was dead; and behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.” In verses 2, 3, John tells us what Christ did. “And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years, and cast him into the bottomless pit.” Here the strong man is bound. Perhaps not literally. He is rendered inactive, cast into death; his own prison house. Said Christ, “When a stronger than he shall come upon him, and overcome him, he taketh from him all his armor wherein he trusted, and divideth his spoils.” The next John gives an account of after the binding of Satan, is the resurrection of the saints. Verses 4, 5. “And I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshiped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection.”MPC 133.1

    How is this work accomplished? The testimony of Hebrews 2:14, as we have already quoted is that through death Christ should destroy him that had the power of death. Paul’s testimony in Hebrews 2:7, 9, is, that Christ was made a little lower (margin, a little while lower) than the angels, that he might suffer death. “That he by the grace of God might taste death for every man.” The means God has devised to accomplish the resurrection is through the death and resurrection of his Son. For [John 3:16] “God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish (everlastingly,) but have everlasting life.” Christ died, passed into the tomb, into the Devil’s prison-house. But God had promised not to “leave his soul in hell,” (the grave.) “An angel came down from heaven and rolled away the stone from the door of the sepulchre and sat upon it. His countenance was like lightning, and his raiment white as snow.” Jesus burst the bars of the tomb, conquered the power of Satan, and rose a triumphant victor over death and the grave. There he obtained the keys of hell and of death. There he obtained power to bruise Satan under our feet. By himself escaping from the prison, he has manifested to men that he has power to bring forth his people from under the hand of Satan.MPC 133.2

    We understand that Christ’s death, to a certain extent, affects every man. He by the grace of God tasted “death for every man.” He proffers to all men life again. As they have passed into the grave, as a consequent on Adam’s transgression, and not as a reward for their own sin, he will give them all a resurrection from that death. See the testimony of Paul on this subject. Romans 5:18. “Therefore, as by the offense of one, judgment came upon all men to condemnation, even so by the righteousness of one, the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.” This life is not eternal life; for as we have already shown, that is to be obtained by believing in Christ.MPC 134.1

    Paul’s testimony is, in 1 Corinthians 15:22, 23, “As in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. But every man in his own order: Christ the first-fruits; afterwards they that are Christ’s, at his coming.” But you inquire, What is the order of the resurrection of the wicked? I answer, according to Revelation 20:5, They live not again until a thousand years after the resurrection of the saints. We understand the saints will reign with Christ until the last enemy is destroyed. John says they will reign a thousand years. The destruction of the wicked cannot take place until after they are raised; so these testimonies would seem to give the order of the resurrection of the wicked, as in the close of the thousand years after Christ’s second coming.MPC 135.1

    Some have claimed, that at Christ’s second coming, there is to be a general resurrection of both righteous and wicked, which is to be immediately followed by a general judgment. But we have already shown that the promise of Christ to Peter was, that “in the regeneration, when the Son of man shall sit on the throne of his glory, ye shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.” And Paul asks in 1 Corinthians 6:2, 3, “Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters? Know ye not that we shall judge angels? how much more things that pertain to this life?” From these testimonies it would appear that the judgment of the wicked, and of fallen angels is to be placed in the hands of the saints, when they are made immortal and reign with Christ.MPC 135.2

    One thing is very plain, if we allow ourselves to reflect upon it; that is, that the judgment of the saints must be prior to their resurrection. If we claim otherwise, we have them judged after they are rewarded; for the testimony of Christ is, “Thou shalt be recompensed at the resurrection of the just.” According to 1 Peter, [chap 4,] they are judged before the end of all things, or Christ’s second coming. “Wherein they think it strange that ye run not with them to the same excess of riot speaking evil of you: who shall give account to him that is ready to judge the quick and the dead. For, for this cause was the gospel preached also to them that are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit. But the end of all things is at hand.”MPC 136.1

    We do not understand Peter to testify, that the end of all things was at hand, when he wrote, but when the end of all things is at hand, Christ is ready to judge the quick (living) and the dead. Verses 17, 18. “For the time is come (when the end of all things is at hand) that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God? And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear?” The above seems to convey the idea that God’s people are judged before the wicked, and before the time comes for them to be rewarded.MPC 136.2

    The last work of Christ while a priest, (for when he comes he is no longer a priest, but a king,) is to blot out the transgressions of his people. Of course there can be no condemning them, after his blood has been applied to cancel their transgressions. No! They will be remembered no more against them for ever. If the view we have briefly spoken of concerning the judgment is correct, it weighs strongly against the common idea of a general resurrection of both righteous and wicked at the time Christ comes.MPC 136.3

    Others have taken the position, that there is to be no resurrection of the wicked. This view is not only absurd, but contrary to Scripture. If the wicked are not to be raised, how can God punish the sinner? Why, say you, all men die, and the wages of sin is death. But all men die because they are mortal. If they are to die because of their sins, they must be raised from that death which they die because of Adam’s sin, before they can die a death for their personal sins. The death men are to die for personal transgression according to Revelation 20, is the second death. How can men die the second death before they have been raised from the first? And according to verse 15, “Whosoever is not found written i the book of life,” is to die the second death. Then all the wicked will have a resurrection from the first death.MPC 137.1

    But we will present Scripture testimony on the subject. We have already referred to Paul’s statement in Acts 24:15, that he had “hope toward God, that there shall be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and unjust.” Also 1 Corinthians 15:22, that, “As in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.” And, that “the free gift should come upon all men unto justification of life.” We will now show that Christ taught the same sentiment. See John 5:25. “Verily, verily, I say unto you, The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live.” It was but a short time after this (as we see by chapter 11) that he raised Lazarus. In verses 28, 29, Christ adds, “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.”MPC 137.2

    The testimony of Peter compared with that of Job, shows clearly that the wicked must have a resurrection. See 2 Peter 2:9. “The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished.” Says Job, [Chap 21:29, 30,] “Have ye not asked them that go by the way? and do ye not know their tokens, that the wicked is reserved to the day of destruction? they shall be brought forth to the day of wrath.”MPC 138.1

    The testimony of Christ to the Jews, recorded in John, compared with his testimony to them, recorded in Luke, shows that the wicked Jews must have a resurrection. See John 8:21. “Then said Jesus again unto them, I go my way and ye shall seek me, and shall die in your sins: whither I go, ye cannot come.” Compare this with the testimony of Luke 13:28: “There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when ye shall see Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, and all the prophets, in the kingdom of God, and you yourselves thrust out.” The above testimonies prove conclusively, that at the time Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, are in the kingdom of God, the wicked Jews will have a resurrection, and see them there. Other testimonies might be adduced, substantiating the doctrine that all men will live again. But we will now inquire,MPC 138.2

    IN WHAT CONDITION ARE THE WICKED RAISED? There is no proof that they are to be raised immortal. Some have misapplied the testimony of Paul in 1 Corinthians 15:51, to the wicked, and thus strive to prove that they will live eternally. He says, [verse 50,] “Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption. Behold! I shew you (my brethren) a mystery. We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump; for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.” By a candid reading of the text you will see that it applies to none but the saints.MPC 139.1

    Paul plainly declares the condition in which the wicked shall be raised. Galatians 6:9, 8. “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh, shall of the flesh reap corruption: but he that soweth to the Spirit, shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.” The wicked will be raised corruptible, as we learn from this testimony.MPC 139.2

    THE BENEFITS OF THE FIRST RESURRECTION, shall now occupy our attention for a little space. Says John, [Revelation 20:6.] “Blessed and holy is he that hath a part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power.” The great and crowning blessing of this resurrection is immortality. Those who obtain it can die no more. As we have already quoted from 1 Corinthians 15. “The dead (righteous dead) shall be raised incorruptible.” Those who have a part in this resurrection receive the consummation of the Christian’s hope, the crown of righteousness: viz, eternal life.MPC 139.3

    Said Christ, in answer to the Sadducees. [Luke 20:35, 36.] “But they which shall be accounted worthy to obtain that world, and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry, nor are given in marriage; neither can they die any more; for they are equal unto the angels; and are the children of God, being the children of the resurrection.”MPC 140.1

    From this we may learn that another benefit which is to be derived from having a part in the first resurrection, is, those who obtain that resurrection become sons of God. Well, say you, we are the sons of God now, if we believe on Christ. Let us look at a little testimony on this subject. In Matthew 5:44, 45, Christ says, “But I say unto you, Love your enemies; bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; that ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven.” Look now at John’s testimony, [John 1:11, 12] when speaking of Christ. “He came unto his own, and his own received him not. But as many as received him, to them gave he power to BECOME the sons of God.” John says in his first epistle, [1 John 3:1,] “Behold what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God.” If we are now actually the sons of God, what force would there be in saying the Father had bestowed love upon us, in permitting us to be called his sons?MPC 140.2

    But says the objector, John says in verse 2 of this same chapter, “Beloved, now are we the sons of God.” Paul explains how we are sons of God now, in his epistle to the Galatians, [Chap 3:26,] “For we are all the children of God BY FAITH in Christ Jesus.” Here is positive proof that we are not actual children; for we are children by faith. Our faith looks forward to the time when we shall become sons of God by the resurrection from the dead. Peter tells us in his second epistle, [2 Peter 1:4,] “Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises; that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature.” According to Peter’s testimony we have the promise of becoming partakers of the nature of God, which will constitute us his actual sons. Paul testifies on this subject, [Ephesians 1:13, 14,] “After that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.” Here the Holy Spirit is said to be the earnest (a sample—see Cruden) of our inheritance. If the Spirit of God is a sample of our inheritance, then it must be that we shall inherit his nature. We are heirs of that which we are to inherit, and Paul says, [Romans 8:16, 17,] “The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God; (children by faith:) and if children, then heirs: heirs of God, and joint heirs with Christ.” And in verse 11 he tells us how we shall be made partakers of this, of which we are heirs. “But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken (bring to life) your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.” Here we learn that the saints of God are to be made alive by his nature, and thus they will be raised undying, and become his sons.MPC 141.1

    Ezekiel describes this resurrection in his vision. Chapter 37:12-14. “Therefore prophesy and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God; Behold, O my people, I will open your graves, and cause you to come up out of your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel. And ye shall know that I am the Lord, when I have opened your graves, O my people, and brought you up out of your graves. And I shall put my Spirit in you, and ye shall live, and I shall place you in your own land.”MPC 142.1

    In the above description of the resurrection there is not one word said about a soul coming to animate these bodies, but the breath entered them and they lived. Neither is it said that in their resurrection state they had blood, The Lord says, “I will put my Spirit in them and they shall live.” They are then fit subjects of the kingdom of God, having no blood, no corruption. Paul says, [1 Corinthians 15:50,] “Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God: neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.” Some have supposed this text to prove that the saints would have no bodies in the kingdom of God. But they are to be “fashioned like Christ’s glorious body.” Christ said after his resurrection, “handle me and see, for a spirit hath not flesh and bones as ye see me have.” Then Christ had flesh and bones, but no blood. “He poured out his soul.” Life. “The life of the flesh is the blood.” So the saints will have bodies of flesh and bones quickened by the Spirit of God.MPC 142.2

    Paul represents the people of God as adopted children. See Romans 8:15. “For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.” When men believe on Christ, they become the adopted children of God. In the ancient custom of adoption, the children adopted, were placed under the rules of the father for an appointed time. At the termination of this time appointed, a great feast was proclaimed, to which the nobility of the surrounding country were called. In the midst of the feast the father brings forward those of his adopted sons who have been faithful to his laws, and proclaims them his real sons. From that time they are entitled to all the privileges of home born sons.MPC 143.1

    Thus the saints of God are taken into the family of Christ. If they prove faithful unto death they have the promise of a crown of life. They will be born from the dead at the time appointed, actual sons of the father, and Jesus before the nobility of heaven (all the holy angels) will say to them, “Come ye blessed of my Father, inherit (your father’s property) the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.”MPC 143.2

    Who can portray the position of those to whom this proclamation shall be made, those who have a part in the first resurrection. Their vile bodies shall be like Christ’s glorious body. In the description given of him as he appeared on the mount, “His face did shine as the sun, and his raiment was white as the light.” They will see no more sorrow, sickness, pain nor death; but life, joy and happiness will be their eternal portion. Language would fail to portray their glorious state. Says Paul, [1 Corinthians 2:9, 10,] “Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.MPC 143.3

    But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit.” He calls it in 2 Corinthians 4:11, “A far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.” Dear reader, may the Lord help you to prepare to receive it.MPC 144.1

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