Not Hearers, But Doers
1. Why was the promise made to Abraham that he, and his seed should inherit the earth?
"Because that Abraham obeyed My voice, and kept My charge, My commandments, My statues, and My laws," Genesis 26:5.
2. With whom will the Lord keep covenant, and shew mercy?
"Know therefore that the Lord thy God, He is God, the faithful God, which keepeth covenant and mercy with them that love Him and keep His commandments to a thousand generations," Deuteronomy 7:9.
3. Upon whom does Christ pronounce a blessing?
"But He said, Yea rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it," Luke 11:28.
4. Will all those saying, Lord, Lord, be saved in the end?
"Not everyone that sayeth unto Me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven," Matthew 7:21.
5. Then who will be allowed to enter?
"But he that doeth the will of My Father which is in heaven," same verse.
6. What plea will many have in that great day?
"Many will say to Me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Thy name? and in Thy name have cast out devils? and in Thy name done many wonderful works?" Matthew 7:22.
7. What answer will they receive?
"And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from Me, ye that work iniquity," Matthew 7:23.
8. To whom are the obedient likened?
"Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of Mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock," Matthew 7:24.
9. To whom are those likened, which hear, but fail to obey?
"And everyone that heareth these saying of Mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand," Matthew 7:26.
10. Who does Paul say shall be justified?
"For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified," Romans 2:13.
11. What does James say?
"For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all," James 2:10.
12. Of what law is James speaking?
He says in the next verse, "For He that said, Do not commit adultery, said also, Do not kill. Now if thou commit no adultery, yet if thou kill, thou art become a transgressor of the law," James 2:11.
13. Who was the author of the words that said, "Do not commit adultery," and also, "Do not kill"?
"These words the Lord spake . . . and He added no more. And He wrote them in two tables of stone," Deuteronomy 5:22.
NOTE: By reading Exodus 20, and Deuteronomy 5, we find the contents of the two tables of stone. Ten precepts in all, and these are what James had reference to when he said, "For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point is guilty of all."
14. In what way does James say one should show their faith?
"Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works," James 2:18.
15. And what of faith if it have not works?
"But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead?" James 2:20.
16. By what was Abraham justified?
"Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? . . . Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only," James 2:21-24.
17. In what condition must one be in order to eat the good of the land?
"If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land," Isaiah 1:19.
18. In what way must we show our love for Christ?
If ye love Me, keep My commandments," John 14:15.
19. What will we do if we love Christ?
"Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love Me, he will keep My words: and My Father will love him, and We will come unto him, and make our abode with him," John 14:23.
20. Did Christ speak His own, or His Father's words?
"He that loveth Me not keepeth not My sayings: and the word which ye hear is not Mine, but the Father's which sent Me," John 14:24.
21. How may we abide in Christ's love?
"If ye keep My commandments, ye shall abide in My love; even as I have kept My Father's commandments, and abide in His love," John 15:10.
22. Did Christ speak His own commandments?
"For I have not spoken of Myself; but the Father which sent Me, He gave Me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak," Romans 15:18.
23. Should Gentiles be obedient to God?
"For I will not dare to speak of any of those things which Christ hath not wrought by me, to make the Gentiles obedient, by word and deed," John 12:49.
24. Who will have the privilege of entering the Holy City?
"Blessed are they that do His commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city," Revelation 22:14.
25. By what name are those called who keep God's commandments?
"Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus," Revelation 14:12.
The Two Laws
1. To whom were the ten commandments spoken?
"And the Lord spake unto you out of the midst of the fire . . . And He declared unto you His covenant, which He commanded you to perform, even ten commandments," Deuteronomy 4:12, 13. See also Exodus 20:1-17.
2. Was this a complete law?
"These words the Lord spake unto all your assembly in the mount out of the midst of the fire, of the cloud, and of the thick darkness, with a great voice: and He added no more," Deuteronomy 5:22.
3. By whom, and on what were the ten commandments written?
"And the Lord said unto Moses, Come up to Me into the mount, and be there: and I will give thee tables of stone, and a law, and commandments which I have written; that thou mayest teach them," Exodus 24:12.
"And He gave unto Moses, when He had made an end of communing with him upon Mount Sinai, two tables of testimony, tables of stone, written with the finger of God," chapter 31:18.
4. After this law had been written by God and delivered to Moses, where was it kept?
"And I turned myself and came down from the mount, and put the tables in the ark which I had made; and there they be, as the Lord commanded me," Deuteronomy 10:5.
5. Did Moses give a law?
"Moses commanded us a law, even the inheritance of the congregation of Jacob," Deuteronomy 33:4.
"And Moses wrote this law," 31:9.
6. In what was the law of Moses written?
"And it came to pass, when Moses had made an end of writing the words of this law in a book, until they were finished," Deuteronomy 31:24.
7. After Moses had made an end of writing this law, then where was it put?
"Take this book of the law, and put it in the side of the ark of the covenant of the Lord your God, that it may be there for a
witness against thee," verse 26.
NOTE: God's law was kept in the ark, and the law of Moses in the side of the ark.
8. By what is sin recognized?
"Because the law worketh wrath; for where no law is, there is no transgression," Romans 4:15.
9. What law is sin the transgression of?
"For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all. For He that said, Do not commit adultery, said also, Do not kill. Now if thou commit no adultery, yet if thou kill, thou art become a transgressor of the law," James 2:10, 11.
NOTE: These two commandments are found in the writing of God as it was recorded upon the two tables of stone, and James tells us if we violate one of the ten we are guilty of all.
10. What is the character of the ten commandments?
"Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good," Romans 7:12. See also Nehemiah 9:13; Psalm 219:172.
11. What is said of the law of Moses?
"Because they had not executed My judgments, but had despised My statutes, and had polluted My sabbaths, and their eyes were after their fathers' idols. Wherefore I gave them also statutes that were not good, and judgments whereby they should not live," Ezekiel 20:24, 25.
12. Why, then, was the ceremonial law given?
"Wherefore then serveth the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the seed should come to whom the promise was made," Galatians 3:19.
13. What was the ceremonial law?
"For the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with those sacrifices which they offered year by year continually make the comers thereunto perfect," Hebrews 10:1.
14. What is the nature of God's law?
"For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin," Romans 7:14.
15. How long was the law of ceremonies to continue?
"Wherefore then serveth the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the seed should come," Galatians 3:19.
16. At the death of Christ what became of this law?
"Having abolished in His flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in Himself of twain one new man, so making peace," Ephesians 2:15.
17. Where was this law nailed?
"Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to His cross," Colossians 2:14.
18. How long did Christ say the law of God would continue?
"For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled," Matthew 5:18.
19. Can one be subject to the law of God while their mind is carnal?
"Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be," Romans 8:7.
20. What did the Savior state as one of the conditions of entering into eternal life?
"And He said unto him, Why callest thou Me good? there is none good but one, that is, God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments," Matthew 19:17.
21. What promise is made to those who keep the law of "ten commandments?"
"Blessed are they that do His [God's] commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city," Revelation 22:14.
22. Who will be justified before God, the hearers, or the doers of His law?
"For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified," Romans 2:13.
We can almost see the glimmer
Of the lights upon the shore,
Almost hear the shout of glory,
From the sweet forever more.
Light of ages soon thy splendor,
Dims the brightest noon-day sun,
When thy coming and thy kingdom
And thy will on earth is done.
The Two Olive Trees
1. In the eleventh chapter of Romans, what great lesson is presented by the apostle Paul?
Answer, The olive trees.
2. In what condition were these two olive trees?
"For if thou wert cut out of the olive tree which is wild by nature, and wert graffed contrary to nature into a good olive tree: how much more shall these, which be the natural branches, be graffed into their own olive tree?" Romans 11:24.
NOTE: By this reading we learn, that, one of these olive trees was of the good kind, while the other one was of the wild variety.
3. What name was given the literal family of Abraham?
"The Lord called thy name, A green olive tree, fair, and of goodly fruit," Jeremiah 11:16.
4. What was the practice of Abraham, that prompted God to call him and his seed by this name?
"Because that Abraham obeyed My voice, and kept My charge, My commandments, My statutes, and My laws," Genesis 26:5.
5. Were the teachings of Abraham in accordance with his life?
"For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment; that the Lord may bring upon Abraham that which He hath spoken of him," Genesis 18:19.
6. Did the family of Abraham, or tame olive tree, have the advantage of the wild, and how?
"What advantage then hath the Jew? or what profit is there of circumcision? Much every way: chiefly, because that unto them were committed the oracles of God," Romans 3:1, 2.
7. While the family of Abraham continued to walk in the ways of God, what kind of a people would they be?
"Now therefore, if ye will obey My voice indeed, and keep My covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto Me above all people: for all the earth is Mine: and ye shall be unto Me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation," Exodus 19:5, 6.
8. Mention another promise made this people if they would continue to be obedient to God.
"And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe and to do all His commandments which I command thee this day, that the Lord thy God will set thee on high above all nations of the earth: and all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God," Deuteronomy 28:1, 2.
9. What if they failed to obey the voice of God?
"And if ye shall despise My statutes, or if your soul abhor My judgments, so that ye will not do all My commandments, but that ye break My covenant: I also will do this unto you . . . And I will set my face against you, and ye shall be slain before your enemies: they that hate you shall reign over you; and ye shall flee when none pursueth you," Leviticus 26:15-17.
10. Because of disobedience to God, what did Israel become?
"And Israel shall be a proverb and a byword among all people," I Kings 9:7, last part of verse.
11. Because of disobedience, what was said of their eyes?
"Let their eyes be darkened, that they may not see, and bow down their back alway," Romans 11:10.
12. Why were the branches broken from this tame olive tree?
"Well; because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by faith. Be not high minded, but fear," verse 20.
13. When the tame or natural branches were broken off, what was grafted into the root of the tame tree to take the place of the branches that were broken off?
"And if some of the branches be broken off, and thou, being a wild olive tree, wert graffed in among them, and with them partakest of the root and fatness of the olive tree," verse 17.
14. At one time, in what condition were the Gentiles?
"Wherefore remember, that ye being in time past Gentiles in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands; that at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world," Ephesians 2:11, 12.
15. How were these wild branches grafted into the tame tree?
"For if thou wert cut out of the olive tree which is wild by nature, and wert graffed contrary to nature into a good olive tree: how much more shall these, which be the natural branches, be graffed into their own olive tree?" Romans 11:24.
NOTE: If they had been grafted according to nature they would bear the same old wild fruit they had been bearing all the time. As they were grafted contrary to nature they must bear the same fruit as the tree into which they were grafted, which would bring them to a standard of right doing, or in other words, "keeping the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus," which is the standard by which the human family will be judged in the final judgment day.
16. What words of warning are given these branches?
"Well; because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by faith. Be not highminded, but fear: for if God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest He also spare not thee," verses 20, 21.
17. Upon what grounds will goodness be extended to these branches?
"Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in His goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off," verse 22.
18. On what grounds will the branches that were broken off be grafted in again?
"And they also, if they abide not still in unbelief, shall be grafted in: for God is able to graft them in again," verse 23.
19. For how long a time will the blinded branches remain in that condition?
"For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in," verse 25.
NOTE: The blindness here referred to was the Jewish people rejecting Christ. At the present time many of them are accepting Him as their sacrifice, and they will accept Him more, until when He shall come again thousands of them will be glad to see Him coming in the clouds of heaven. This is one sign that we have of the nearness of Christ's return to the earth. It is also a sign that Gentile times are nearing a close.
The Colored Man, his Origin, Religion and Destiny
1. What were the names of the three sons born to Noah, the posterity of whom lived on this side of the flood, and populated the whole earth?
"And Noah was five hundred years old: and Noah begat Shem, Ham, and Japheth," Genesis 5:32.
2. From which of these sons did the colored race originate, and how do we know?
"And the sons of Ham; Cush, and Mizraim, and Phut, and Canaan," Genesis 10:6. The word "Ham" as a Hebrew adjective always means black and warm, therefore as the name "Ham" was given to this son of Noah, it signifies the color, and thus the origination of the colored race.
The name "Ethiopia" is the Greek and Roman equivalent for the Hebrew name "Cush," who was the descendant of Ham. Cushite in the Hebrew is the same as Ethiopian in the Greek and Roman, and the Cushites settled the country of Ethiopia, which in Bible times was known as the unbounded lands south of Egypt, spoken of also as the land of Ham.
3. What further Bible proof have we that the Ethiopian race are the colored people?
"Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots?" Jeremiah 13:23.
NOTE: Ham is the only son of Noah after whom a country was named.This is spoken of as the land of Ham in Psalms 105:23, 27, also 106:22, as well as elsewhere. The term Ethiopia is a Greek and Roman word, meaning "Cush" in the Hebrew. The Ethiopians or Cushites were black, and Jeremiah declared they could not change their color. The late geographical name for this country is Abyssinia.
4. Have the colored people taken an active part with the chosen people of God during the past ages?
Moses married an Ethiopian woman, Numbers 12:1. The queen of Sheba, who journeyed to meet King Solomon, I Kings 10:1-3; II Chronicles 9:1-12, was also a colored woman. Sheba was the capitol city of Ethiopia, and this queen was queen of the Ethiopians.
5. When the prophet Jeremiah was cast into a dungeon and about to perish who reported his condition to the king, and led the soldiers to his rescue?
"Now when Ebed-melech the Ethiopian, one of the eunuchs which was in the king's house, heard that they had put Jeremiah in the dungeon; the king then sitting in the gate of Benjamin; Ebed-melech went forth out of the king's house, and spake to the king . . . Then the king commanded Ebed-melech the Ethiopian, saying, take from hence thirty men with thee, and take up Jeremiah the prophet out of the dungeon, before he die," Jeremiah 38:7, 8, 10.
6. What direct Bible evidence do we have that the angels of God are watching over colored people, to prepare them for eternal life the same as they are over the white?
"And the angel of the Lord spake unto Philip, saying, Arise, and go toward the south unto the way that goeth down from Jerusalem unto Gaza, which is desert," Acts 8:26.
7. Did Philip, the minister of God, obey, and in doing so what did he find?
"And he arose and went: and, behold, a man of Ethiopia, an eunuch of great authority under Candace queen of the Ethiopians, who had the charge of all her treasure, and had come to Jerusalem for to worship, was returning, and sitting in his chariot read Esaias [Isaiah] the prophet," verse 27, 28.
8. What did the Spirit then say to Philip?
"Go near, and join thyself to this chariot," verse 29.
9. Did Philip, under the direction of the angel, esteem this man a fit subject for salvation even though he was an Ethiopian? What was the outcome of this meeting and Bible study?
"They went down both into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him," verse 38. Read verses 30 to 40 inclusive.
NOTE: It is a known fact of history that this eunuch, who was treasurer of Ethiopia, carried back to his people the Christian religion, the glad tidings of the Son of God, Who had come into the world, and that His message was accepted. Since the very commencement of this nation, from seven hundred years before Moses, these people have observed the seventh day Sabbath, as David and Solomon. Being attracted by this common religion, the queen of Sheba made her journey to visit king Solomon at Jerusalem, and the two nations were blended together in the friendly ties of mutual interests.
Unlike the Hebrews, however, the Ethiopian people accepted Jesus as the promised Messiah, and following in His steps, they continued to observe the seventh day of the week as He did. Even today many of them observe the true Sabbath of the Lord.
They withstood the power of the Roman church, also the Mohammedan invasions. Therefore they have never been compelled to give up the religion of Jesus Christ, as the rest of the world during the dark ages, when Sunday was forced upon them under civil law without Bible authority.
Knowing their devotion to God from the scriptures, and the part they have had in matters of importance pertaining to His work, as well as the special direction of Philip to the Ethiopian eunuch, no reasonably minded person could say that they do not have an equal chance for eternal life with that of other races. Paul says, "There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus," Galatians 3:28. See also Colossians 3:11.
Do You Love the World, or God?
1. Is it possible for one to serve two masters?
"No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon," Matthew 6:24.
2. In what condition are those who are friends of the world?
"Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God," James 4:4.
3. What words of instruction are given by John on this subject?
"Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world," I John 2:15.
4. Is it possible for one to entertain the love of the Father, and of the world at the same time?
"If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him," I John 2:15.
5. From what source does the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life come?
"For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world," I John 2:16.
6. What will become of these?
"And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof," I John 2:17.
7. What of those who show their love for God, by doing His will?
"But he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever," I John 2:17.
8. What is the whole duty of man?
"Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep His commandments: for this is the whole duty of man," Ecclesiastes 12:13.
9. In what way may we show our love for God?
"For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments," I John 5:3.
10. Are His commandments difficult and hard to bear?
"His commandments are not grievous," I John 5:3.
11. In what way does Christ say for us to show our love for Him?
"If ye love Me, keep My commandments," John 14:15.
12. Out of the multitudes of the earth, who are the ones that love the Son?
"He that hath My commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth Me," John 14:21.
13. And whom will they be loved by?
"And He that loveth Me shall be loved of My Father, and I will love him, and will manifest Myself to him," John 14:21.
14. What will one practice if they really love the Father and the Son?
"Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love Me, he will keep My words," John 14:23.
15. By their daily life, who are the ones who have not love for God?
"He that loveth Me not keepeth not My sayings: and the word which ye hear is not Mine but the Father's which sent me," John 14:24.
16. Did Christ teach His own, or His Father's commandments?
"For I have not spoken of Myself; but the Father Which sent Me, He gave Me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak," John 12:49.
17. What is love?
"And this is love, that we walk after His commandments. This is the commandment, That, as ye have heard from the beginning, ye should walk in it," II John 6. See also I John 5:3 and Exodus 20:3-17.
18. In what way may we know that the love of God is perfected in us?
"But whoso keepeth His word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in Him," I John 2:5.
The Five Kingdoms
1. In the second year of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar by what peculiar circumstance was he surrounded?
"In the second year of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar, Nebuchadnezzar dreamed dreams, wherewith his spirit was troubled, and his sleep brake from him," Daniel 2:1.
2. Was he anxious to know the dream and its meaning?
"And the king said unto them, I have dreamed a dream, and my spirit was troubled to know the dream," Daniel 2:3.
3. What man was used by God to make this dream known to the king?
"Then was the secret revealed unto Daniel in a night vision. Then Daniel blessed the God of heaven," Daniel 2:19.
4. Why was this dream revealed to the prophet Daniel?
"But as for me, this secret is not revealed to me for any wisdom that I have more than any living, but for their sakes that shall make known the interpretation to the king, and that thou mightest know the thoughts of thy heart," Daniel 2:30.
5. What message did Daniel bring to the king concerning his dream?
"Thou, O king, sawest, and behold a great image. This great image, whose brightness was excellent, stood before thee; and the form thereof was terrible," Daniel 2:31.
6. Of what was this image composed?
"This image's head was of fine gold, his breast and his arms of silver, his belly and his thighs of brass, his legs of iron, his feet part of iron and part of clay," verses 32, 33.
7. What did Daniel see smiting this image upon the feet?
"Thou sawest till that a stone was cut out without hands, which smote the image upon his feet that were of iron and clay, and brake them to pieces," verse 34.
8. What happened to this image when the stone smote it upon the feet?
"Then was the iron, the clay, the brass, the silver, and the gold, broken to pieces together, and became like the chaff of the summer threshingfloors; and the wind carried them away, that no place was found for them: and the stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth," verse 35.
9. Of what empire was Nebuchadnezzar king?
"Behold, I will send and take all the families of the north, saith the Lord, and Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon," Jeremiah 25:9.
10. Concerning the head of gold what did Daniel say to the king?
"Thou, O king, art a king of kings: for the God of heaven hath given thee a kingdom, power, and strength, and glory. And wheresoever the children of men dwell, the beasts of the field and the fowls of the heaven hath He given unto thine hand, and hath made thee ruler over them all. Thou art this head of gold," Daniel 2:37, 38.
NOTE: The Babylonian empire, the richest and shortest in duration began 602 B.C. and ended B.C. 538.
11. Was there to be a second universal empire represented by the "Breast and arms of silver?"
"And after thee shall arise another kingdom inferior to thee," verse 39.
12. According to the Bible what would be the second universal rule?
"Behold, I will stir up the Medes against them, which shall not regard silver; and as for gold, they shall not delight in it . . . And Babylon the glory of kingdoms, the beauty of the Chaldees excellency, shall be as when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah, Isaiah 13:17, 19.
"Thy kingdom is divided, and given to the Medes and Persians," Daniel 5:28.
NOTE: According to history, the Medo-Persian empire was the one that followed the Babylonian kingdom, and began in the year 538 B.C. and ended B.C. 331.
13. What does the brass in this image represent?
"And another third kingdom of brass, which shall bear rule over all the earth," Daniel 2:39.
14. According to the Bible what empire would be the third to rule the world?
"The ram which thou sawest having two horns are the kings of Media and Persia. And the rough goat is the king of Grecia: and the great horn that is between his eyes is the first king," Daniel 8:20, 21.
NOTE: History tells us that the Grecian empire under Alexander the Great was the third one to rule the world, and came upon the stage of action B.C. 331. It lasted only about twelve years, when it was divided into four divisions. The last of these passed away in the year 168 B.C.
15. What is said of the fourth kingdom, or division of this great image?
"And the fourth kingdom shall be strong as iron: forasmuch as iron breaketh in pieces and subdueth all things: and as iron that breaketh all these, shall it break in pieces and bruise," Daniel 2:40.
NOTE: The Roman empire was the fourth universal empire to rule the world. This was the empire that was ruling the world while Christ was on the earth, and He was tried before the Roman courts. The Roman empire was much stronger and lasted much longer than any of the preceding ones, acquiring universal rule by the year 46 B.C., although it was founded at a much earlier date. About the year 395 A.D. it was divided into its eastern and western divisions to represent the two limbs of the great metallic image. Some years later it was divided into ten divisions to represent the ten toes on the feet of this image. We can see how history responds to the call of divine prophecy, and that the world has come down in the image of a man for whose purpose it was created.
16. What conditions would be in the world after this fourth empire had reached its divided state?
"And as the toes of the feet were part of iron, and part of clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong, and partly broken. And whereas thou sawest iron mixed with miry clay, they shall mingle themselves with the seed of men: but they shall not cleave one to another, even as iron is not mixed with clay," verses 42, 43.
NOTE: One can easily see the conditions as they are at the present time, that the nations are separate and broken apart. These people have been engaged in the worst war of the world's history, which is in harmony with this prophecy. We can expect upheavals at different times during the remaining years of this present dispensation.
17. In the days of the divided state of the Roman empire what great change will take place?
"And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever," verse 44.
18. Under this fifth universal rule, or kingdom of Christ what conditions will exist?
"And He shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more," Isaiah 2:4.
19. During this time who will be king over all the earth?
"And the Lord shall be King over all the earth: in that day there shall be one Lord, and His name one," Zechariah 14:9.
We have girded on the armor,
And our banner is unfurled;
Tis the standard of Mt. Zion,
And we'll face a frowning world.
We have on the only breastplate,
Tis the shield of truth and right;
And the sword which we are using
Is mighty in the fight.
We are told to hold out faithful,
By the grace of God we stand
And we'll work beneath this banner
Till we reach the promised land.
Our Captain Judea's Lion:
Our weary hearts doth cheer,
He's the Holy one of Zion,
And tells us not to fear.
The Four Beasts
1. During whose reign did Daniel receive the vision of Daniel 7th chapter?
"In the first year of Belshazzar," Daniel 7:1.
2. Over what empire was Belshazzar king?
"In the first year of Belshazzar, king of Babylon, Daniel had a dream and visions of his head upon his bed: then he wrote the dream, and told the sum of the matters," verse 1.
3. What did the prophet first see in this vision?
"Daniel spake and said, I saw in my vision by night, and behold, the four winds of heaven strove upon the great sea," verse 2.
4. In prophecy what does wind represent?
"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, saith the Lord. Thus saith the Lord of hosts, Behold, evil shall go forth from nation to nation, and a great whirlwind shall be raised up from the coasts of the earth, and the slain of the Lord shall be at that day from one end of the earth, even unto the other end of the earth; they shall not be lamented, neither gathered, nor buried; they shall be dung upon the ground," Jeremiah 25:31-33.
NOTE: By this scripture we learn, that wind in prophecy represents war, commotion and strife, resulting in death and destruction.
5. What is the prophetic meaning of water?
"And He saith unto me, The waters which thou sawest, where the whore sitteth, are peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues," Revelation 17:15.
NOTE: From this we learn, that, water in the prophetic books of the Bible has reference to peoples, multitudes, nations, and tongues. So instead of the vision of the old prophet being literal wind striving upon literal water, it was war, commotion and strife, among peoples, multitudes, nations and tongues.
6. What was the result of this strife?
"And four great beasts came up from the sea, diverse one from another," Daniel 7:3.
7. What do these four beasts represent?
"These great beasts, which are four, are four kings, which shall arise out of the earth," verse 17.
8. What was the first beast like?
"The first was like a lion, and had eagles wings; I beheld till the wings thereof were plucked, and it was lifted up from the earth, and made stand upon the feet as a man, and a man's heart was given to it," verse 4.
NOTE: This first beast (like the golden head of the great image of the second chapter of Daniel) represents the Babylonian empire. At first the beast had eagles wings, denoting the rapidity with which Babylon extended its conquests under Nebuchadnezzar. When this vision was given, a great change had taken place; its wings had been plucked, and it no longer flew upon its prey as does the eagle. The bold spirit of the lion was gone, and a man's heart, weak and faint had taken its place. Such was the condition of the Babylonian empire under Belshazzar, who was connected with the ruling power of this empire when it came to its end.
9. By what was the second kingdom represented?
"And behold another beast, a second, like to a bear, and it raised up itself on one side, and it had three ribs in the mouth of it between the teeth of it; and they said thus unto it, Arise, devour much flesh," verse 5.
NOTE: History tells us, that, the Medo-Persian empire was the second one to rule the world. This beast was seen coming up on one side, and this is an exact representation of the medo-Persian empire. History tells us the Medes were at first the leading people of this empire, but the Persians came up last and became far the stronger tribe of people. These people were to some extent, ravenous and blood thirsty as is the bear, by which they are represented.
10. By what was the third universal empire symbolized?
"After this I beheld, and lo another, like a leopard, which had upon the back of it four wings of a fowl: the beast had also four heads; and dominion was given to it," verse 6.
NOTE: The third universal empire to rule the world, was that of Alexander the Great. Two wings, the number the lion had, were not sufficient, the leopard had four; denoting unparalleled swiftness of movement. This we find to be historically true of the Grecian empire under the famous Alexander. The conquests of the Grecian empire have no parallel in historic annals for suddenness and rapidity.
"This beast had also four heads." The Grecian empire maintained its unity but very little longer than the lifetime of Alexander, when it was divided into four divisions, or between the four leading generals of Alexander, to represent the four heads of this third beast of the great vision.
They are as follows, Lysimachus, Seleucus Nicator, Ptolemy, and Cassander, who had each assumed the title of king. The great horn being broken, in its place came up four notable ones toward the four winds of heaven. Myers General History, page 170 of the 1903 edition.
11. By what is the fourth kingdom represented?
"After this I saw in the night vision, and behold a fourth beast, dreadful and terrible, and strong exceedingly; and it had great iron teeth; it devoured and break in pieces, and stamped the residue with the feet of it; and it was diverse from all the beasts that were before it; and it had ten horns. I considered the horns, and behold, there came up among them another little horn, before whom there were three of the first horns plucked up by the roots; and, behold in this horn were eyes like the eyes of a man, and a mouth speaking great things," verses 7, 8.
NOTE: The Roman empire was the fourth one to rule the world, and is the one represented by this, the fourth beast of Daniel's vision. There is no beast among all the beasts of the great creation of God like the one we have under consideration, neither has there been another kingdom in any age of the world's history that was so cruel as was the Roman kingdom. It was this kingdom that was ruling when Christ was upon the earth, and it was before Roman rulers that He was tried and condemned to death. The Roman kingdom, in its different phases, has to its credit between fifty and one hundred million martyrs who paid the supreme sacrifice for the cause of Christ. This great number were willing to suffer death rather than bow to the false teachings of the Catholic Church which held universal control during 1260 years of the time allotted to the fourth kingdom, represented by this fourth beast, the fourth universal government of earth's history.
12. What do the ten horns of this beast represent?
"And the ten horns out of this kingdom are ten kings that shall arise," verse 24.
NOTE: By reading history we learn, that, the Roman kingdom was divided into ten divisions to represent the ten horns of this beast. These divisions occurred between the years 350 and 485 A. D. as we learn by different histories.
13. What is represented by the little horn that came up among the ten and plucked up three of them by the roots?
"And another shall rise after them; and he shall be diverse from the first, and he shall subdue three kings. And he shall speak great words against the Most High, and shall wear out the saints of the Most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time. But the judgment shall sit, and they shall take away his dominion, to consume and to destroy it unto the end," verses 24, 25, 26.
NOTE: This little horn that comes upon the stage of action, will be taken up and considered in another article of this book. In this we will see how history responds to the call of divine prophecy, proving beyond any question of doubt the truthfulness of the Bible, the book through which God has revealed His will to man, and shows that the Bible did not come as some who are ignorant of prophecy argue, by the will of man, but that it was given by the inspiration of the Creator, which is God Himself.
14. After this little horn power plays its part, then what happens?
"And the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven, shall be given to the people of the saints of the Most High, whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shall serve and obey Him," verse 27.
NOTE: Instead of another beast following this fourth, and as a consequence another kingdom arising in the earth to bear rule over the whole world, the prophet beheld until the last beast was given to the burning flames, verse 11. As history records only four kingdoms to rule the whole earth thus far and the Bible said that there would be just four we cannot expect Germany or any other to gain possession of the world and set up a universal empire. The next is destined by God Almighty to be the kingdom of God, and is to be given to the saints of the Most High.
The next universal kingdom then shall be given only to righteous people, and to no earthly government. Since the fourth empire was set up and Rome ruled the world, Mohammed attempted to establish the fifth world-wide kingdom, but failed in his effort. Napoleon then resolved like the mighty Alexander, to be world's conqueror, but in 1815 met his Waterloo. And so will any other king or ruler who attempts to follow their aspirations and usurp the place which belongs now to God, and to Him only. There were to be five kingdoms, four are past and the fifth will be the kingdom of God, as God has declared.
We cannot help noticing in this grand lesson from Holy Inspiration the certainty with which history responds to the call of the prophets. Historians who were unfamiliar with the voice of the prophets, have recorded the events which have taken place in the world since its beginning and they have accurately filled the mould made by the prophets of God thousands of years previously.
God has looked down through the dim and otherwise obscure future, and has revealed to the children of men the important events to take place. He has told us of the kingdoms that would arise and fall, of the great kings and of their career. Truly He has made known to us the future, and declared from ancient times the things that are not yet done, and has in this way proved beyond any question of doubt the divinity and authenticity of the Bible.
Waymarks To The End
The guide boards all along the dreary road that His children would have to travel have been marked plainly directing their every step as they move forward toward the kingdom of their God. These guide boards have been placed there by the hand of God, many of which we have passed long ago, and can only be dimly seen while others are almost within our reach, some are present events, and others are yet future, which we of necessity must witness before we receive our inheritance in the kingdom of God.
God plainly said thousands of years ago that there would be just four kingdoms to rule the earth. History gives us a view of these four great monumental guideboards and says they are all in the past. We look backward as it were through this great telescope of history and see Babylon, far in the distance, Medo-Persia this side, next to her we see Greece, and next in her proper place we behold Rome, making the four just as God has said, while number five has not yet come.
Theatrical Performances Already Staged
Babylon has long since had her day, and played her part on the great theatrical stage of the Universe of God. The curtain has fallen giving place to the next great performance and Medo-Persia appeared and played well her part just as God said she would in the sight of the whole world. The curtain fell and on to the theatrical stage came Greece. Her performance was given in the sight of men, and the curtain fell, giving place for the next great drama. Rome next came upon the stage of action and commenced her performance, and is still playing her part, but soon this last play will like the others be finished, and the curtain will fall giving place to the fifth and last great world wide performance which will be conducted in righteousness, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief actor, when verse 27 of this chapter will have its fulfillment, as accurate and complete as those previously mentioned above. It reads, And the kingdom and dominion and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven shall be given to the people of the saints of the most High, whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shall serve and obey Him."
Four kingdoms, through war, turmoil and strife have held dominion over the whole earth, and have, as truly as God's word says, broken it in pieces. The righteous reign of the Prince of Peace, the King of kings, and Lord of lords, is yet a future event which will as certainly come in its order as the kingdoms of men have arisen and fallen according to the divinely appointed program of the Almighty Jehovah, which has been given us from heaven. This is not only a condition greatly desired, at this time of trouble, but it is one the coming of which is based upon logical conclusions, predicated upon the eternal promise of God, who cannot lie. They will be realized in their order. They are ours to behold and enjoy if we are only faithful to the trust He has left us and do His will unto the end.
Truly the chronology of the past dispensations of human government, bears many records that stand like guide-posts, pointing with bloody hands to a new and better way. And beyond the blood stained past, and the ever darkening present, we can see the silver lining of the great beyond. Truly the dark storm clouds of war and destruction are penetrated by the positive assurance of God, that the fifth kingdom will be a reality. Yes, we can see the verdant shores of Eden blossoming with the flowers of peace, and yielding her fruits of love, and good will to men, and our hearts yearn for a realization of this blessed hope, which if faithful, is ours to enjoy.
The Second Coming of Christ
1. After Christ's death, burial and resurrection from the dead, He ascended into heaven and a cloud received Him out of the sight of the apostles. Is there any evidence found in the scriptures that he will ever come back to the earth again?
"And when He had spoken these things, while they beheld He was taken up: and a cloud received Him out of their sight. And while they looked steadfastly toward heaven as He went up, behold two men stood by them in white apparel: which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven," Acts 1:9-11.
2. How long must the heavens receive and retain Jesus Christ, and when will God send Him back to the earth?
"And He shall send Jesus Christ which before was preached unto you; Whom the heaven must receive, until the times of the restitution of all things," Acts 3:20, 21.
3. Were Jesus' apostles interested in the subject of His returning to the earth, and what question did they ask Him?
"And as He sat upon the Mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately saying, Tell us when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of Thy coming and of the end of the world?" Matthew 24:3.
4. After Jesus answered their question by telling them of many conditions that would come upon the world, and important events that would happen, what did He say of His returning to the earth?
"Immediately after the tribulation of those days, shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken: and then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven; and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory," Matthew 24:29, 30.
5. What do we find in the New Testament gospel according to Paul regarding the second coming of Christ?
"And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven, with His mighty angels," II Thessalonians 1:7.
"The Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trump of God," I Thessalonians 4:16.
6. How old is the doctrine of Christ's second coming?
"And Enoch also the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these saying, behold the Lord cometh with ten thousands of His saints, to execute judgment upon all," Jude 14, 15.
The Manner of Christ's Coming
1. When Christ comes will He be in secret lodging for a time, and the news of His coming be made known by messengers, by telegraph, or by newspapers?
"Behold I have told you before. Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, He is in the desert, go not fourth; behold He is in the secret chambers, believe it not," Matthew 24:25, 26.
2. Why are we admonished not to believe reports of Christ having come secretly, and that He is in the desert or in secret, somewhere?
"For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west: so shall also the coming of the Son of man be," Matthew 24:27.
3. Does the Bible teach that His coming will be silent, or accompanied with noise and the sound of the trumpet?
"For the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven, with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trump of God," I Thessalonians 4:16.
4. Will the people of the world see Him when He comes?
"Behold He cometh with clouds and every eye shall see Him," Revelation 1:7.
5. Will the sight of the coming of Christ from heaven, cause the wicked people of the earth to mourn?
"And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven, and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven, with power and great glory," Matthew 24:30.
6. What will the great and mighty men do, in that day, to hide themselves from the presence of Christ who sitteth upon the throne, as he comes in the clouds of heaven?
"And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every freeman, hid themselves in the dens, and in the rocks of the mountains; and said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of Him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb. For the great day of His wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?" Revelation 6:15-17.
7. Who will accompany Christ when He returns to the earth?
"When the Son of man shall come in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then shall He sit upon the throne of His glory," Matthew 25:31.
I often wonder as the hours
Of life pass swiftly by,
If when the trumpet sounds aloud
From out the thickening sky;
And he maketh up His jewels
Gathers to Himself His own,
Will we be among that number
That shall worship 'round His throne?
We Know Not the Day Nor the Hour
1. Is it possible for one to know the day and hour of Christ's coming?
"But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but My Father only," Matthew 24:36.
2. What words of admonition are given by Christ regarding His coming?
"Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come," Matthew 24:42.
3. Since Christ tells us to watch, has He not given us something to watch?
"So, likewise ye, when ye shall see these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand," Luke 21:31.
4. What statement does Christ make concerning the city of Jerusalem, connecting it with His coming?
"And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations; And Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled," Luke 21:24.
NOTE: The city of Jerusalem, after having been occupied, and controlled by Gentile people almost all the time since the days of Christ, until the year 1918, was in the above year wrested from that people who have controlled it through all these years and today the movement is on foot in many countries, of giving that city, as well as country to the Jewish people as a national home.
5. Have we any prophecies concerning the gathering of the literal Jews?
"And He shall set up an ensign for the nations, and shall assemble the outcasts of Israel, and gather together the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the earth," Isaiah 11:12. Behold, I will gather them out of all countries, whither I have driven them in mine anger . . . and I will cause them to dwell safely," Jeremiah 32:37. See also Zechariah 12:7; Joel 3.
6. What condition did Christ say would be in the world just preceding His coming?
"And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity, the sea and the waves roaring," Luke 21:25.
NOTE: Especially does Christ mention the distress of nations. We look back over a few years of the world's history to the year 1914, and as all know the great war broke out upon the world, as thunder from the clear sky, worse and worse, until nine tenths of the world's population were engaged. And well does this condition agree with the latter part of the verse under consideration. "The sea, and the waves roaring," If the reader will turn to Revelation 17:15, he will find "water representing peoples, multitudes, nations, and tongues." Truly the nations were more angry during the past conflict than at any other time during the history of the world and continued in that condition until the Turk was driven from Palestine. Then came the lull, as well as a world wide movement for the re-establishment of the Jew in his own land, which is the fulfillment of Christ's words. "Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled."
7. In the Revelation of Christ what is said regarding the condition of the world just preceding His second coming?
"And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come," Revelation 11:18.
8. What proof have we that this condition will be in the world when Christ returns?
"And the time of the dead that they should be judged, and that Thou shouldest give reward unto Thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear Thy name small and great, and shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth," Revelation 11:18.
9. Near the coming of Christ what will be the condition of the world as compared to the days of Lot?
"Likewise also as it were in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded; But the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all. Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed," Luke 17:28-30.
10. How does Paul speak of the last days of this present dispensation?
"This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come," II Timothy 3:1.
11. Will the people at this time enjoy hearing doctrine or fables preached?
"For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables," II Timothy 4:3-4.
NOTE: Those who are studying the conditions of the world at the present time, and weighing them in the light of the divine word, know full well that the conditions are here as the great apostle said they would be in the last days.
12. What is said of evil men and seducers?
"But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived," II Timothy 3:13.
13. How does Paul speak of the Jewish people in the last days?
"For I would not brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery; lest ye should be wise in your own conceits: that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles be come in," Romans 11:25.
NOTE: Only in the last few years has this statement commenced to meet its fulfillment. The Jewish people who once rejected Christ as their Savior, are now accepting him by the hundreds, and is another living witness to the fact that we are nearing the close of Gentile rule, and the coming of Christ draweth nigh.
14. Does Paul say we would or would not be in darkness as to the coming of Christ?
"But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief," I Thessalonians 5:4.
15. And what of the fig tree?
"Now learn a parable of the fig tree; when his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh. So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things know that it [margin He] is near, even at the doors," Matthew 24:32, 33.
Watchman on the walls of Zion
What, O tell us, of the night?
Is the day-star now arising?
Will the morn soon greet our sight?
O'er your vision.
Shine there now some rays of light?"
The Signs of the Times
1. What signs are given, of a social nature, indicating the soon coming of Christ?
"This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affections, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God; having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof; from such turn away," II Timothy 3:1-5.
NOTE: The above statements are true at the present time. There has never been any age of the world that would suit this prophecy as well as does the one in which we live. For instance, Lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God," In this age of the world's history, the picture shows, and theatres are filled to their capacity, while the church is almost empty, and the people of today care nothing at all for the Bible, as all know who are watching the conditions of the world, and weighing them in the light of God's word in order that they may locate the age of the world in which we are living. Truly the above prophecies are a light to the feet of the Christian.
2. What prophecy connected with the second coming of Christ has had a remarkable fulfillment during the past fifty years?
"Behold the hire of the laborers who have reaped down your fields, which is of you kept back by fraud, crieth: and the cries of them which have reaped are entered into the ears of the Lord of sabaoth," James 5:4.
3. What will wealth gained in this way prove to be in the day of final judgment?
"Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are motheaten. Your gold and silver is cankered; and the rust of them shall be a witness against you and shall eat your flesh as it were fire. Ye have heaped treasure together for the last days," James 5:2, 3.
NOTE: We could fill page after page showing the fulfillment of this prophecy, but this is a matter of general knowledge to all; labor trouble, strikes and the concentration of wealth are all matters which have developed largely during the last fifty years, and as the apostle has said, these things will stand against those engaged in them, and there will then be no way of escape.
4. What prophecy of the Old Testament is being fulfilled at the present time, which is a sign of the near coming of Christ?
"But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased," Daniel 12:4.
NOTE: The present generation is eyewitness to the wonderful increase of knowledge the certainty of which the intelligent mind will not doubt. It seems only as yesterday in our history when the scythe, cradle and old fashioned treadmill were used to harvest our hay and grain. The ox team still lingers in our memory while now in its stead we have the steam tractors, and the automobile. This advancement commenced immediately following the dethroning of the power of darkness, at the expiration of the 1260 prophetic years, which was to mark the commencement of the time of the end. In 1807 the steam boat was invented, in 1811 the steam printing press, in 1819 the locomotive, matches 1829, the reaper and mower in 1832, the photographic camera 1840, the telegraph in 1859, modern typewriter 1868, electric light, first exhibited 1876, telephone patented 1876, talking machine 1877, trolley car 1879, typesetting machine 1884, and wireless telegraphy 1896. Besides these named there are countless other inventions equally as important and wonderful. Go back with me to a period, one hundred years ago, and we find almost the same conditions existing there as were three thousand years before. It seems that this long river upon whose drowsy surface not a ripple of advancement had passed for three thousand years, suddenly burst into the white foam of violent agitation. Men's minds began to blossom forth into myriads of inventions until within the past sixty years, six hundred thousand patents have been issued by the patent office at Washington, D.C.
5. To what age of the world did Christ compare His coming?
"But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be," Matthew 24:37.
6. What condition existed in the days of Noe?
"For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark," Matthew 24:38.
7. Were they aware of what was going to happen to them?
"And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away," verse 39.
8. Will the same condition exist when Christ comes the second time?
"So shall also the coming of the Son of man be," verse 39.
9. What will the tribes of the earth do when they behold the Son of God coming in the clouds?
"And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory," verse 30.
Social Signs of Christ's Coming
1. What conditions will be in the world near the second coming of Christ?
"But as the days of Noah were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be," Matthew 24:37.
2. What were the conditions in the days of Noah?
"For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark, and knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be," Matthew 24:38, 39.
3. What about a great increase of knowledge at this time?
"But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased," Daniel 12:4.
NOTE: It is a fact known to all, that, the century just passed, and the one in which we now live are unsurpassed by any age of this world's history, as far as advancement and inventive skill is concerned. This condition is wholly in accordance with the prophecy of Daniel, and is one of the signboards along the way by which we may be guided safely unto the day of perfection.
4. How will some receive this explanation of signs?
"Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts, and saying, Where is the promise of His coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation," II Peter 3:3, 4.
5. What is said of the hoarding of wealth, as one of the signs?
"Go to now, ye rich men, weep and howl for your miseries that shall come upon you. Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are motheaten. Your gold and silver is cankered; and the rust of them shall be a witness against you, and shall eat your flesh as it were fire. Ye have heaped treasures together for the last days," James 5:1-3.
NOTE: During the last fifty years treasures have been heaped together, as never before in the history of the world. And especially in the last ten years have men been heaping to themselves millions of dollars. In fact, the desire of the human family is money above everything else.
6. In connection with gaining wealth, what does James say of labor troubles?
"Behold, the hire of the labourers who have reaped down your fields, which is of you kept back by fraud, crieth: and the cries of them which have reaped are entered into the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth," James 5:4.
7. Will there be a cry of peace before Christ comes among people who do not understand the prophecies?
"For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape," I Thessalonians 5:3.
8. Are the brethren of Christ included in this ignorant and unconcerned class?
"But ye brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief," I Thessalonians 5:4.
Can We Know Near the Time of His Coming?
1. Will Christ's people be in darkness regarding His coming, so that He will come upon them at an unexpected time as a thief in the night?
"But ye brethren are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief. Ye are all the children of light and the children of the day; we are not of the night nor of darkness," I Thessalonians 5:4, 5.
2. As we are plainly informed by the sacred word that Christ's brethren will not be in darkness regarding the time of His coming, what does the Bible say of the wicked?
"But the wicked shall do wickedly, and none of the wicked shall understand, but the wise shall understand," Daniel 12:10.
3. What does the Bible further tell us of how Christ will come upon the hypocrite, and all who will be cut asunder?
"The . . . Lord of that servant shall come in a day when he looketh not for Him, and in an hour that he is not aware of, and shall cut him asunder and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites: There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth," Matthew 24:50, 51.
4. Have we any admonition in the Word to watch, that Christ will not come upon us as a thief?
"If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and if thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee," Revelation 3:3.
5. As God has repeatedly given His people instructions to watch, with the promise that they will not be in darkness regarding this important event of the return of Jesus, what has He given us to watch?
"We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts," II Peter 1:19.
6. After Christ had given a series of events that would transpire in the world before His coming, what figure for illustration did He give, to impress upon them how simple and plain, the signs in the world would be, that His coming was near?
"Now learn a parable of the fig tree, when his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh; So likewise, ye, when we shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the door," Matthew 24:32, 33.
7. What warning does Christ give His people lest there be danger of His coming upon them unawares?
"And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares," Luke 21:34.
8. What other sign was to mark His advent?
"There shall come a Star out of Jacob and a Scepter shall rise out of Israel," Numbers 24:17.
9. To whom did this star appear?
"There came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, saying, Where is He that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen His star in the east, and are come to worship Him . . . . And lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was," Matthew 2:1, 2, 9.
10. What was predicted of the little children in connection with the birth of Christ?
"A voice was heard in Ramah, lamentation, and bitter weeping; Rachel weeping for her children refused to be comforted for her children, because they were not," Jeremiah 31:15.
11. How were these words of the prophet verified?
"Then Herod, when he saw that he was mocked of the wise men, was exceeding wroth, and sent forth, and slew all the children that were in Bethlehem, and . . . in all the coasts thereof, from two years old and under, according to the time which he had diligently inquired of the wise men. Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet, saying, In Rama there was a voice heard, lamentation, and weeping, and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children, and would not be comforted, because they were not," Matthew 2:16-18.
12. How was He to be received by His own people?
"He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from Him; He was despised, and we esteemed Him not," Isaiah 53:3.
13. Did this prophecy prove true?
"He was in the world, and the world was made by Him, and the world knew Him not. He came unto His own, and His own received Him not," John 1:10, 11.
14. What was predicted of His preaching?
"The Spirit of the Lord God is upon Me; because the Lord hath anointed Me to preach good tidings unto the meek; He hath sent Me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound," Isaiah 61:1.
15. In what way was this prediction verified?
"And He came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up; and, as His custom was, He went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up for to read. And there was delivered unto Him the book of the prophet Esaias. And when He had opened the book, He found the place where it was written, The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He hath anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor: He hath sent Me to heal the broken-hearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised . . . And He began to say unto them, This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears," Luke 4:16-21.
16. How was it said He would do when on trial?
"He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet He opened not His mouth; He is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so He opened not His mouth," Isaiah 53:7.
17. When accused by His enemies before Pilate, how did Christ receive their words?
"Then said Pilate unto Him, Hearest Thou not how many things they witness against Thee? And He answered him never a word; insomuch that the governor marveled greatly," Matthew 27:13, 14.
18. How did the prophecy state that Christ's murderers would dispose of His garments?
"They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon My vesture," Psalms 22:18.
19. Was this literally accomplished?
"And they crucified Him, and parted His garment, casting lots: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, They parted My garments among them, and upon My vesture did they cast lots," Matthew 27:35.
20. How was it said they would treat Him while on the cross?
"They gave me also gall for My meat; and in My thirst they gave Me vinegar to drink," Psalms 69:21.
21. What was offered Him when in His dying agony?
"They gave Him vinegar to drink mingled with gall: and when He had tasted thereof, He would not drink," Matthew 27:34.
22. Where was the grave of Christ to be made?
"And He made His grave with the wicked, and with the rich in His death," Isaiah 53:9.
23. What was actually done with His body, after it was taken down from the cross?
"A rich man of Arimathea, named Joseph . . . went to Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus . . . He wrapped it in a clean linen cloth, and laid it in his own new tomb which he had hewn out in the rock," Matthew 27:57-60.
The Spirits in Prison
1. In what way did Christ suffer for the unjust?
"For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit," I Peter 3:18.
2. By what was He quickened, or made alive?
"Quickened by the Spirit," see the same verse.
3. By what did He preach unto the spirits, or people in the prison house of sin?
"By which [same Spirit that raised Him from the dead] also He went and preached unto the spirits [people] in prison," verse 19.
4. To what age of the world does Peter especially refer?
"Which sometime were disobedient, when once the long suffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water," verse 20.
NOTE: We learn that in the days of Noah that the same spirit that raised Christ from the dead helped Noah deliver his message. It was in the time when Noah was building his ark, at the time where there were only eight souls saved. It was not in the time that Christ lay silent in the tomb. And the same spirit will help us today to preach the true message.
5. From what was Christ to deliver the people?
"To open the blind eyes, to bring out the prisoners from the prison, and them that sit in darkness out of the prison house," Isaiah 42:7.
6. In one of Christ's sermons, what did He say His mission was?
"The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He hath anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He hath sent me to heal the broken hearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised," Luke 4:18.
The Chastisement of the Jewish People
1. What great calamity befell the Jewish people?
"For, lo, I will command, and I will sift the house of Israel among all nations, like as corn is sifted in a sieve," Amos 9:9.
2. During this time would there be a colony or government established by them?
"Yet shall not the least grain fall upon the earth," verse 9, last part.
NOTE: The grain of corn dropped upon the ground will gradually be covered with dirt, and springing up will grow into a large stalk of corn. God has declared that such would not be the case with the Jewish people, and to this day they have never established a government of their own but have been in a scattered condition through all these years.
3. Why was this punishment placed upon them?
"Behold, the eyes of the Lord God are upon the sinful kingdom, and I will destroy it from off the face of the earth; saving that I will not utterly destroy the house of Jacob, saith the Lord," verse 8.
NOTE: God said He would destroy the kingdom, but would not destroy all the seed of Jacob. The kingdom has been destroyed because of the wickedness of the people, but the seed of Jacob are scattered the world over. They are in every nation on the globe.
4. Give one of their main sins.
"Thus saith the lord: Take heed to yourselves, and bear no burden on the Sabbath day, nor bring it in by the gates of Jerusalem; . . . But they obeyed not, neither inclined their ear, but made their neck stiff, that they might not hear, nor receive instruction," Jeremiah 17:21-23.
5. What would happen to the city of Jerusalem if they failed to keep the Sabbath?
"But if ye will not hearken unto Me to hallow the Sabbath day . . . then will I kindle a fire in the gates thereof, and it shall devour the palaces of Jerusalem, and it shall not be quenched," Jeremiah 17:27.
NOTE: Sabbath breaking was the greatest sin the Jewish people were committing in that age of the world's history, and it was because of this that their chastisement commenced at the time it did.
6. What is said of the land of Palestine during the seventy years captivity?
"And them that had escaped from the sword carried he away to Babylon; where they were servants to him and his sons until the reign of the kingdom of Persia: to fulfill the word of the Lord by the mouth of Jeremiah, until the land had enjoyed her Sabbaths: for as long . . . as she lay desolate she kept Sabbath, to fulfill threescore and ten years," II Chronicles 36:20, 21.
7. In what year did this punishment commence?
"Behold, I will send and take all the families of the north saith the Lord, and Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, My servant, and will bring them against this land, and against the inhabitants thereof, and against all these nations round about, and will utterly destroy them, and make them an astonishment, and an hissing, and perpetual desolations," Jeremiah 25:9.
NOTE: The margin tells us this took place in or near the year 606 B.C. History gives about the same date.
8. After these people were scattered among the nations, what would they become?
"Israel shall be a proverb and a byword among all people," I Kings 9:7.
9. Commencing in the year 606 B.C. for how many years would they be severely punished?
"And if ye will not yet for all this hearken unto Me, then I will punish you seven times more for your sins," Leviticus 26:18.
10. How many days are there in three and one half times?
"And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times and half a time, from the face of the serpent," Revelation 12:14. Here we have a period of three and one half times. Verse 6 reads as follows, And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred and threescore (1260) days," verse 6.
NOTE: In this prophecy we have three and one half times representing twelve hundred and sixty days (1260). Then we can very easily double this prophecy, which would make the seven times under consideration. This would equal twenty-five hundred and twenty (2520) days, the length of time the Jewish people would be scattered among all nations.
11. In the prophetic books of the Bible, what does one day represent?
"After the number of the days in which ye searched the land, even forty days, each day for a year, shall ye bear your iniquities, even forty years, and ye shall know My breach of promise," Numbers 14:34.
NOTE: If one day in prophecy represents one year, twenty five hundred and twenty days would represent twenty-five hundred and twenty (2520) years, or the length of time the Jewish people would be scattered among all nations. This great period of time commenced in or near the year 606 B.C., and counting down the stream of time twenty-five hundred and twenty years would bring us to the year 1914, and in this very year the great war broke out upon the world, which has brought about the fulfillment of many prophecies, some of which we will give as we proceed with this great study.
12. Concerning the Jewish people, what has God said of their re-gathering?
"And He shall set up an ensign for the nations, and shall assemble the outcasts of Israel, and gather together the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the earth," Isaiah 11:12.
13. What does Jeremiah say on this same subject?
"Behold, I will gather them out of all countries, whither I have driven them in Mine anger, and in My fury, and in great wrath; and I will bring them again unto this place, and I will cause them to dwell safely; and they shall be My people, and I will be their God," Jeremiah 32:37, 38.
14. Concerning this same subject, what does Joel say?
"The children also of Judah and the children of Jerusalem have ye sold unto the Grecians, that ye might remove them far from their border. Behold, I will raise them out of the place whither ye have sold them, and will return your recompence upon your own head," Joel 3:6, 7.
15. Concerning this same subject, what is the teaching of Amos?
"And I will bring again the captivity of My people of Israel," Amos 9:14.
16. Jeremiah, in speaking on this subject presents a wonderful thought.
"Behold, I will bring them from the north country, and gather them from the coasts of the earth, and with them the blind and the lame, the woman with child and her that travaileth with child together; a great company shall return thither," Jeremiah 31:8.
NOTE: We have given several scriptures concerning the gathering of the literal Jew, and many more could be given on this wonderful subject. God has seen fit to supply us with an abundance of scripture telling us when they were scattered, how long they would remain in this condition, and at what time they would be gathered again. Their twenty five hundred and twenty years ended in the year 1914 as we have already seen, and in that year the world war broke out upon the world. This war continued to grow in fierceness until the Holy Land was wrested from the hands of the Turks, which has cleared the way for the return of the Jews to their own land; the land that was promised to Abraham of old, and the movement is on foot in all the Allied nations, of giving the Holy Land to this people as a national home. After 2520 years of persecution they are wending their way homeward, and accepting Jesus Christ as their Savior. God has said: They shall come with weeping, and with supplications will I lead them: I will cause them to walk by the rivers of waters in a straight way, wherein they shall not stumble: for I am a Father to Israel, and Ephraim is My first born," Jeremiah 31:9.
The Gathering of the Jewish People
NOTE: In the preceding lesson we have learned that the Jewish people were scattered among the nations of the earth as God said they would be. This chastisement commenced in the year 606 B.C., under Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, and the prophet said it would last for a period of twenty-five hundred and twenty (2520) years which would bring us down to the year 1914 A.D. In this year the World War broke out. With unrelenting fury it lasted for a period of over four years, and the climax having been reached, the way has been paved for the Jewish people to return to their own land; namely, the land of Palestine. In this lesson we will endeavor to find out if this gathering of the Jewish people is in accordance with the divine plan of God. If we find it to be the fulfillment of the prophetic word, we may know what to expect in the future, especially concerning this people and the land to which they are being gathered.
1. After the Jewish people had been scattered among the nations, what divine prophecy was given concerning them?
"And their seed shall be known among the Gentiles, and their offspring among the people: all that see them shall acknowledge them, that they are the seed which the Lord hath blessed," Isaiah 61:9.
2. What is said of the gathering of this same people?
"Behold, I will gather them out of all countries, whither I have driven them in Mine anger, and in My fury, and in great wrath; and I will bring them again unto this place, and I will cause them to dwell safely," Jeremiah 32:37.
3. In speaking on the same subject, what does the prophet Ezekiel say?
"And say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God: Behold, I will take the children of Israel from among the heathen, whither they be gone, and will gather them on every side, and bring them into their own land: And I will make them one nation in the land upon the mountains of Israel; and one King shall be King to them all: and they shall be no more two nations, neither shall they be divided into two kingdoms any more at all," Ezekiel 37:21, 22.
4. According to Joel, would the Jewish people be brought into their own land again?
"For, behold, in those days, and in that time, when I shall bring again the captivity of Judah and Jerusalem," Joel 3:1.
5. What reason is given for the gathering of this people?
"Therefore say unto the house of Israel, Thus saith the Lord God: I do not this for your sakes, O house of Israel, but for Mine holy name's sake, which ye have profaned among the heathen, whither ye went," Ezekiel 36:22.
6. As this people are being gathered to their own country, what will be their attitude toward God and His Son?
"Behold, I will bring them from the north country, and gather them from the coasts of the earth, and with them the blind and the lame, the woman with child and her that travaileth with child together: a great company shall return thither. They shall come with weeping, and with supplications will I lead them: I will cause them to walk by the rivers of waters in a straight way, wherein they shall not stumble: for I am a father to Israel, and Ephraim is My first born," Jeremiah 31:8, 9.
7. For whom will they be mourning?
"And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon Me Whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for Him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for Him, as one that is in bitterness for his first-born," Zechariah 12:10.
NOTE: This prophecy we find to be in the process of fulfillment at the present time. Many of the Jewish people that have gone to the promised land weep and wail for the crime their ancestors were guilty of, in causing Christ to be nailed to the cross, where He spilled His life blood. Today that blindness is being removed, and many of them are accepting Christ, the one whom they once hated, and it is in this way they are being led by the rivers of pure water. They are being sprinkled with the pure water, which is Christ, who is declared to be the water of life.
8. After this people have been gathered to their own land, will they be allowed to dwell safely?
"And I will cause them to dwell safely," Jeremiah 32:37.
9. Will they build the old waste places?
"And they shall build the old wastes, they shall raise up the former desolations, and they shall repair the waste cities, the desolations of many generations," Isaiah 61:4.
10. Will they have any assistance in this great work?
"And the sons of strangers shall build up thy walls, and their kings shall minister unto thee: for in My wrath I smote thee, but in My favour have I had mercy on thee," Isaiah 60:10.
11. When Christ comes to take charge of His kingdom, what will many of the Jewish people say?
"Blessed is He that cometh in the name of the Lord," Matthew 23:37-39.
12. Together with the Jewish people, what will many say at the appearing of Christ?
"And it shall be said in that day, Lo, this is our God; we have waited for Him, and He will save us: this is the Lord: we have waited for Him, we will be glad and rejoice in His salvation," Isaiah 25:9.
"City of Peace" a name resounding
Throughout the earth.
Prophetic voices now are sounding
The coming glory of thy birth.
Down-trodden city of all past ages.
Filled with the memories of the past,
Revered and loved by poets, martyrs, sages,
Thy present trouble shall be thy last.
From henceforth wear a crown of glory
Even the glory of the world's "Great King";
Now the first of all the earth in story,
The world shall to thy gates its homage bring.
From thy down-trodden state there shall arise
The future glory of a sinless world
Peace within thy borders, no clouds upon thy skies,
Upon thy walls the banner of the "Prince of Peace" unfurled.
Arise and shine, the glory of thy Lord
Shall make thee noble, grand and free,
And all that's promised in prophetic word
Shall be fulfilled in thee.
"City of Peace" all that hope holds dear
Is united to thy name. Thy Gethsemane
Is past; thy God will cause thy glory to appear,
Celestial light shall gild thy Calvary.
J. A. Nugent
The Gathering of the Jewish People
NOTE: In the preceding lesson we have learned of the scattering and regathering of the Jews, and also that at the appearing of Christ, this people will say "Blessed is He that cometh in the name of the Lord," There certainly are some reasons why this condition will exist at this time. One reason is, they are accepting Him as their Savior, and there is another reason which we will give in the study.
1. In what condition will the nations be at the second coming of Christ?
"And the nations were angry, and Thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that Thou shouldest give reward unto Thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear Thy name, small and great; and shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth," Revelation 11:18.
2. At this time when the nations are angry, what thought will they have?
"Thus saith the Lord God; It shall also come to pass, that at the same time shall things come into thy mind, and thou shalt think an evil thought," Ezekiel 38:10.
3. With this evil thought in their minds, what will they purpose to do?
"And thou shalt say, I will go up to the land of unwalled villages; I will go to them that are at rest, that dwell safely all of them dwelling without walls, and having neither bars nor gates," verse 11.
4. For what purpose will they go up to the land of unwalled villages?
"To take a spoil, and to take a prey; to turn thine hand upon the desolate places that are now inhabited, and upon the people that are gathered out of the nations, which have gotten cattle and goods, that dwell in the midst of the land; And thou shalt come up against My people of Israel, as a cloud to cover the land; it shall be in the latter days, and I will bring thee against My land, that the heathen may know Me, when I shall be sanctified in thee, O Gog, before their eyes," verses 12, 16.
5. What will Jerusalem become to these nations?
"And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it," Zechariah 12:3.
NOTE: By the above scriptures we are able to see why the Jewish people will say, "Blessed is He that cometh in the name of the Lord," This will be a great time of trouble. The nations will be gathered against the Jews and Jerusalem, for the purpose of taking them, and it will be then that the Jewish people which have accepted Christ will rejoice to see Him come. They will understand that His coming will be their only hope for safety, and the only chance for them to survive this, the greatest of all troubles.
6. How many nations will be included in this siege against Jerusalem?
"For I will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle; and the city shall be taken, and the houses rifled, and the women ravished; and half of the city shall go forth into captivity, and the residue of the people shall not be cut off from the city," Zechariah 14:2.
7. How does Joel express the same thought?
"I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead with them there for My people and for My heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations, and parted my land," Joel 3:2.
8. At this time what will the Lord do?
"Then shall the Lord go forth and fight against those nations, as when He fought in the day of battle," Zechariah 14:3.
How prostrate lies before Thy radiant throne,
Thy bleeding Israel, Thy dearest child;
On whom Thy love and fairest fortune smile,
When on the sacred ark Thy glory shone!
Behold his anguish now within the zone
Of bloody strife where craven legions wild
In wanton spite the streets of Lemberg piled
With heaps of bleeding flesh and splintered bone!
Oh, raise him from the dust and lead him home!
His heart is pining on a foreign strand
With yearnings for his promised, holy land.
Restore Thy glory to the sacred clime,
And he'll rebuild Thy house with golden dome,
And sing Thy praises to the end of time
From Maccabaean, Sept. 1919
The Last Generation
1. What does God say concerning the dispersion of the Jewish people among the nations of the world?
"I will persecute them with the sword, with the famine, and with the pestilence, and will deliver them to be removed to all the kingdoms of the earth," Jeremiah 29:18.
"For, lo, I will command, and I will sift the house of Israel among all nations, like as corn is sifted in a sieve," Amos 9:9.
2. How long a period of punishment was allotted to these people, including all the tribes of Israel?
"And if ye will not hearken unto Me [for all the previous punishment], but walk contrary unto Me; Then I will walk contrary unto you also in fury; and I, even I, will chastise you seven times for your sins," See Leviticus 26:27, 28.
NOTE: In Ezekiel 4:5 we read, "I have laid upon thee the years of her iniquity according to the numbers of days," This period of seven times, refers to seven years, or 2520 days. Each day for a year makes 2520 years allotted to them for dispersion and punishment. This began with the capture of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar about 606 years before the birth of Christ, and therefore ended 1914.
3. What did Daniel the Prophet say about the time of deliverance of his people?
"There shall be a time of trouble such as never was since there was a nation, even to that same time, and at that time thy people shall be delivered, everyone that shall be found written in the book," Daniel 12:1.
4. What did he say further, as to the length of time it would be until the deliverance of His people should begin to be witnessed, and their period of chastisement end?
"And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away, and the abomination that maketh desolate set up, there shall be a thousand two hundred . . . and ninety days," Daniel 12:11.
NOTE: The period of time given here by Daniel, was 1290 days or years, until deliverance would come to his people. We note in verse two of this chapter, that the next event following their deliverance is that even many that sleep in the dust of the earth shall arise, showing that the deliverance will finally be complete. This span of 1290 years begins as the verse above states, "from the time the daily sacrifice is taken away, and the abomination that maketh desolate set up," As all Christians are to be watchful, there are none excusable for not knowing something about this prophecy, since it has a definite starting place.
5. What class of people will not understand this prophecy, and what does God say of those who do understand it? Into what distinguished class does He place them?
"The wicked shall do wickedly, and none of the wicked shall understand, but the wise shall understand," Daniel 12:10.
6. As the commencement of the 1290 years of this prophecy starts with the taking away of the daily sacrifice, and the placing of the Abomination of Desolation, to what do these two events refer?
"But in those sacrifices there is a remembrance again made of sin every year . . . . And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifice, which can never take away sin," Hebrews 10:3, 11.
Much is said all through the Bible about the Old Testament law for pardoning sins, which was through the blood of animals. When a person broke any one of the ten commandments, he was stoned to death, unless an animal was killed in his place. This was to impress upon them the horrors of sin. Priests stood daily offering these sacrifices, and this is the daily sacrifice that was still going on in the days of the apostle Paul 66 years after Christ, as the above scripture shows. The Jews, not believing in Christ, the Lamb of God, who came and died for all who would accept Him, went right on offering up the animal sacrifices. This ended, however, when the Mohammedans by religion, or the Turks and Arabs, took possession of Jerusalem and the Holy Land in 632 A.D.
7. Did Jesus refer to these events as signs of His second coming?
"When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:) then let them which be in Judea flee into the mountains," Matthew 24:15, 16.
NOTE: It is a fact that the year 632 marks the beginning of this period of Mohammedan conquest over Jerusalem and the Holy Land. It was this very year that Jerusalem fell, and then this desolating power STOOD there. The Jews fled to the mountains then, as they did when the Romans took Jerusalem in 70 A.D. This warning of our Savior fitted both events, and thousands now living in the low plain country of Judea will flee to the mountains again when the nations of the world gather to Palestine in the future.
8. Has there been more than one abomination in the sight of God, caused by Gentile armies coming against the Holy Land?
"And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate," Daniel 9:27.
NOTE: We see here that there were to be a series of abominations which would cause the Holy Land to be desolate UNTIL the consummation. This agrees with the words of Jesus in the same discourse when He said Jerusalem would be trodden down by the Gentiles UNTIL the times of the Gentiles were fulfilled, Luke 21:24.
It was the year 632 when these events took place and by adding the 1290 to this date, it brings us to 1922. It was this eventful year that fifty-three nations signed that memorable agreement giving the Jewish people the Holy Land. Any late encyclopedia will tell you about this, if you will look up "The Balfour Declaration." This was the most outstanding fulfillment of prophecy since the decree of Artaxerxes in the year 457 B.C., which pointed to the events of our Saviour's first coming. This is no less significant, relative to His second coming.
9. Is there not another time period in connection with this prophecy, and what is said of the waiting time?
"Blessed is he that waiteth, and cometh to the thousand three hundred and five and thirty days," Read Daniel 12:10-12.
NOTE: This waiting time is just 45 days, or just 45 years further. It reaches on from 1922 forty-five years, or to the year 1967. This goes into the kingdom, but does not give the date of Christ's coming, for Jesus said, "And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortened," Matthew 24:22. Notice that this is during the same discourse, and just following His mention of the Abomination of Desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, therefore it is these days that He refers to. This is the waiting time, or the last generation which we are in now.
10. What further did Jesus say about His coming during the waiting time, or the generation witnessing certain events happening here on the earth?
"Behold the fig tree, and all the trees; when they now shoot forth, ye see and know of your own selves that summer is now nigh at hand. So likewise ye, when ye see these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of God is night at hand. Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass away till all be fulfilled," Luke 21:29-32.
NOTE: In the verses preceding these quoted above, Jesus mentions Jerusalem being trodden down by the Gentiles with the Jews scattered among all nations UNTIL the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled. Then He speaks of distress of nations, with perplexity, and men's hearts failing them for fear and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth. Then He compares these things to the leaves on the trees which show summer to be near at hand. When we see the leaves on the trees, He says we know of our own selves that summer is nigh at hand. "LIKEWISE YE, WHEN YE SEE THESE THINGS COME TO PASS, KNOW YE THAT THE KINGDOM OF GOD IS NIGH AT HAND." Also that the generation living then would not pass away until ALL was fulfilled.
11. How many years is a generation according to the scriptures?
"So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations; and from David to the carrying away into Babylon are fourteen generations; and from the carrying away into Babylon unto Christ are fourteen generations."
NOTE: Here we have three periods of fourteen generations each, from Abraham to Christ, and this includes 1900 years. See dates given at the top of your Bible (most Bibles have them) in Genesis 18th chapter. It was also at this time when Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed by fire, which were set forth as examples of those that would afterwards live ungodly. Jude 1:7 and II Peter 2:6. Anciently, fire was put on a tall watchtower as a signal of approaching danger, Jeremiah 6:1.
Dividing 1900 years by the forty-two generations from Abraham to Christ, we have approximately forty-five years to a generation. This is the exact period of the waiting time in Daniel 12:12, as previously set forth in the 1290 and 1335 year periods.
Consequently, before this generation comes to its close Jesus will appear in the clouds of heaven in majestic power and glory, as He has promised. He said this generation would not pass away until all was fulfilled, therefore, we will not reach the end of it until the kingdom is here. Those days are to be shortened for the elect's sake.
Dear reader, we must use our life now for God, or it will be too late. We must put our means into the closing message of world-wide warning of the pending judgment. "Prepare to meet thy God, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand."
Russia in Prophecy
1. In what terms do we have the nation of Russia mentioned in divine prophecy?
"Son of man, set thy face against Gog, the land of Magog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal, and prophesy against him," Ezekiel 38:2.
2. Where did the names of Magog, Meshech and Tubal originate?
"Now these are the generations of the sons of Noah, Shem, Ham, and Japheth, and unto them were sons born after the flood. The sons of Japheth, Gomer and Magog, and Madai, and Javan, and Tubal, and Meshech and Tiras," Genesis 10:1, 2.
NOTE: If the student will turn to the map showing the divisions of the world after the flood, in the back of their Bible, they can readily see that Magog, Meshech, and Tubal, the grandsons of Noah migrated northward from Arabia and settled in the southern part of the territory now known as Russia. The introduction of the 38th chapter of Ezekiel given above is as follows, "Son of man, set thy face against Gog, the land of Magog," In the late translations of our Bible the word "Rosh" is used instead of Gog, from which the word Russia is derived.
3. What is said in the scriptures about this land of Russia?
"Behold I am against thee, O Gog, the land of Magog, and I will turn thee back, and put hooks in thy jaws," Ezekiel 38:2, 3, 4.
NOTE: The people of the present generation have been eye witnesses to the fulfillment of this divine prediction, and they have seen, during the late war, the turning back of this mighty power of the north. Russia, long known as the bear of the north," has been turned back, and hooks have been put in her jaws. She has been reduced from one of the most powerful monarchial governments on earth to no government at all with only anarchy left.
4. What does God say further of Russia, and has she a future part to play in the last great drama of earth's history?
"I will bring thee forth, and all thine army, horses and . . . a great company . . . Persia, Ethiopia, and Libya with them . . . Gomer, and all his bands; the house of Togarmah of the north quarters, and all his bands, and many people with thee . . . . After many days thou shalt be visited; in the latter years thou shalt come into the land that is brought back from the sword, and is gathered out of many people, against the mountains of Israel.
Thou shalt ascend and come like a storm, thou shalt be like a cloud to cover the land, thou and all thy bands and many people with thee . . . . And thou shalt say, I will go up to the land of unwalled villages. I will go to them that are at rest, that dwell safely, all of them dwelling without walls, and having neither bars nor gates," Ezekiel 38:4-11.
NOTE: The above prophecy refers to the gathering of the armies for the last great battle, during which Christ comes, as is seen by reading the balance of this chapter. That this has no reference to the battle of Gog and Magog at the end of the thousand years spoken of in Revelation 20th chapter is evident from the fact that these armies come against unwalled villages, which have neither bars nor gates, while the battle at the end of the thousand years is when the wicked dead are resurrected and make an effort to take the holy city. The wicked hosts are spoken of in the Revelation of Jesus as Gog and Magog, which is correct. The wicked armies known as Gog and Magog that take so prominent a part in the battle of Armageddon, which comes at the commencement of the thousand years, only suffer the first death, and will constitute the armies marshalled together by Satan at the close of this period, after they are resurrected before the second death.
5. For more evidence that the power mentioned in this chapter refers to Russia, from what direction does God say these armies are to come when they march against His people who are gathered in the land of Israel, during which time He will rain fire and brimstone upon them and destroy them?
"And thou shalt come from thy place out of the north parts, thou and many people with thee," verse 15.
NOTE: Russia occupies the territory lying to the north of Jerusalem, so it is again made clear as to the identity of Gog.
6. At what time does verse 16 say this will be?
"It shall be in the latter days."
7. What other strong evidence contained in this chapter shows that this battle referred to is the one that takes place at the commencement of the one thousand year reign of Christ, and not at its close?
"Thus will I magnify Myself and sanctify myself, and I will be known in the eyes of many nations, and they shall know that I am the Lord," verse 23.
NOTE: By this demonstration of God's power in the raining of fire and brimstone from heaven and shaking the earth with the mightiest earthquake known in history, God says in this way He will be magnified and sanctified in the eyes of many nations. This could not be if the events connected thereto were not at the time of the coming of Christ.
Bible Organization and Service
1. What comparison does the Lord make with His church on earth, showing that it is an organized body, with all members working together?
"For as the body is one, and hath many members and all the members of that one body, being many are one body: so also is Christ. For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit. For the body is not one member, but many. If the foot shall say, Because I am not the hand, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body? And if the ear shall say, Because I am not the eye, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body? If the whole body were an eye, where were the hearing? If the whole were hearing, where were the smelling? But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased Him," I Corinthians 12:12-18.
2. Has the Lord placed governments in His church?
"And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healing, helps, government, diversities of tongues," I Corinthians 12:28.
3. What divine command was given to organize, or set in order the things that were disorderly, or wanting?
"For this cause left I thee in Crete, that thou shouldst set in order the things that are wanting, and ordain elders in every city as I had appointed thee," Titus 1:5.
4. What is said about rendering honor to certain ones who have the rule over churches?
"Let the elders that rule well be counted worthy of double honor, especially they who labor in the word and doctrine," I Timothy 5:17.
5. What command is given to the laity of the church respecting the ones in authority?
"Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you," Hebrews 13:17.
NOTE: Other references worthy of consideration are, Romans 12:8, and Hebrews 13:7, 24.
6. As everything needful to the church is outlined in the gospel, do we have a record of conferences where the leading brethren conversed together?
"And certain men which came down from Judea taught the brethren, and said, Except ye be circumcised after the manner of Moses, ye cannot be saved. When therefore Paul and Barnabas had no small dissension and disputation with them, they determined that Paul and Barnabas, and certain other of them, should go up to Jerusalem unto the apostles and elders about this question. And when they were come to Jerusalem, they were received of the church, and of the apostles and elders, and they declared all things that God had done with them. But there rose up certain of the sect of the Pharisees which believed, saying, That it was needful to circumcise them, and to command them to keep the law of Moses," Acts 15:1, 2, 4, 5.
7. In handling business problems for the general need of the body, do we have instruction to appoint committees?
"Wherefore, brethren, look ye out among you seven men of honest report, full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business," Acts 6:3.
8. Did not someone exercise the authority to call the disciples together in appointing this committee? Who was it, and were there many disciples that heeded the call?
"Then the twelve called the multitude of the disciples unto them and said, It is not reason that we should leave the word of God, and serve tables," verse 2.
9. For what purpose was this committee of seven appointed?
"And in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplied, there arose a murmuring of the Grecians against the Hebrews, because their widows were neglected in the daily ministration. Then the twelve called the multitude of the disciples unto them and said, It is not reason that we should leave the word of God, and serve tables. Wherefore, brethren, look ye out among you seven men of honest report, full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business. But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word. And the saying pleased the whole multitude: and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Ghost, and Philip, and Prochorus, and Nicanor, and Timon, and Parmenas and Nicolas, a Proselyte of Antioch," verses 1-5.
NOTE: There are some who misunderstand this scripture, thinking that it only applies to a distribution of money and necessities to the poor, but the word "widows" here refers to the wives of the apostles, and their families. The term "widow indeed" applies to women whose husbands are dead, without any near relatives to support them. See I Timothy 3:5, 16. The statement in verse one of Acts 6, that "when the number of the disciples was multiplied, there arose a murmur of the Grecians against the Hebrews because their widows were neglected in the daily ministration," The cause given for the widows being neglected, was the number of the apostles increasing, showing that it was the wives of the apostles referred to and confirming much other evidence that this was the case. Brethren sold their possessions and laid the money at the apostles' feet, which was distributed among the wives and families of the ministering brethren, and this is the way the Church of God carries on its financial business today. They had a store house then where the surplus was held until distribution was made, and so there is now.
10. Did certain apostles exercise the authority to send evangelists to points from where calls came for help?
"Now when the apostles which were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent unto them Peter and John," Acts 8:14.
11. What is to be done with those who cause division and offense?
"Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offenses contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them," Romans 16:17.
12. Should a brother or sister fall away, and do things that are not right in the sight of God, what is the course to pursue?
"How think ye? If a man have an hundred sheep, and one of them be gone astray, doth he not leave the ninety and nine, and goeth into the mountains and seeketh that which is gone astray? And if so be that he find it, verily, I say unto you, he rejoiceth more of that sheep, than of the ninety and nine which went not astray. Even so it is not the will of your Father which is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish. Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother. But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established. And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto them as an heathen man and a publican," Matthew 18:12 to 17.
13. If they refuse to hear those who have come to them, and also the church, then how is the church to treat such an one?
"But if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican," last part of verse 17.
NOTE: Notice that the church is to consider them outside, and not a part of the body. It is a church affair before God, and to have disobedient people not walking as they should in the church, causes others to also live loose, careless lives, as well as bringing reproach from the outside. The church officials should see carefully that all members walk worthy of their calling.
Hell, When and Where is It?
1. What did Jesus especially say about Hell while He was on earth?
"And if thine eye offend thee pluck it out: it is better for thee to enter into the kingdom of God with one eye, than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched," Mark 9:47, 48.
2. Where is Hell further mentioned in the New Testament, as pertaining to the judgment?
"And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened which is the book of life; and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books according to their works. And the sea gave up the dead that were in it, and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them, and they were judged every man according to their works," Revelation 20:12, 13.
NOTE: It does not show justice on the part of God, to put people in a lake of fire, or a hot place known as hell, and leave them there for several thousand years, and then take them out and judge them. Therefore the place referred to in the above text cannot mean the lake of fire where the wicked go. All earthly courts of justice judge people before they punish them, and not afterwards. For us to suppose that the word "hell" in the foregoing text means a hot place of torture and misery, is to suppose that God inflicts punishment before people are even judged, as they are taken from hell to judgment. In such a case there would be many people who suffer the punishment of hell unjustly, if after having been there for a few thousand years, they would be judged and found innocent. As we do not hold such unjust actions as this against our loving Creator, some other explanation must be sought.
3. Did Jesus go to a place called hell when He died?
"He seeing this before, spake of the resurrection of Christ, that His soul was not left in hell, neither His flesh did see corruption," Acts 2:31.
NOTE: As the word hell is descriptive of a place where the good people as well as the bad go at death, this explains how it is that people are taken from hell and judged, in the day of judgment. A careful study of this subject will reveal to the reader that in the two above cases the word "hell" refers to the grave, as it is taken from the Greek word "Hades," always rendered grave in the Greek. If you will note also in your own Bible, if it is a reference Bible, and most Bibles are, that this word is explained in the margin, as meaning the grave. Look in your own Bible at Revelation 20:13, where the word hell occurs, and see if there is not a small figure placed by the word. Then examine the reference in the margin and find this same figure, and you will see that explanation is given as meaning the grave. The same Greek word "Hades," is translated grave many times and in that language, from which our Bibles were translated. It is the word used, always, for our word grave."
Notes on hell: The word "hell" is translated from three Greek words, viz., Tartarus, Hades, and Gehenna. Tartarus only occurs once in the original Greek text, from which our English was translated, and that is in II Peter 2:4, relative to the angels that sinned, being cast down to Tartario, to be reserved in chains unto the day of judgment.
The Greek word Tartarus, means the regions just above the earth. It does not mean the same as Hades or Gehenna.
The word Hades, as previously mentioned, means the grave and nothing more nor less. Just as Jesus went there, and was resurrected from it, so are many people to be taken from this hell, the grave, and judged in the day of judgment.
The word Gehenna is used about twelve times in the New Testament, and the apostles and people to whom Jesus was speaking well knew that this was the name of the valley just to the south of Jerusalem, into which all of the carnage and filth of the city were hauled and dumped. It was where the carcasses of horses, mules, cows and sheep and all dead animals were taken as well as the bodies of transgressors and criminals. It is well known as the valley of Hinom and Gehenna. Here fires were kept burning day and night, one year following another, and this carnage and filth were burned. Many writers have given vivid descriptions of the place. They say around the edges worms were constantly consuming the flesh of animals and bodies of people, where the fire did not burn, hence the expression of Jesus "where the worm dieth not and the fire is not quenched." Jerusalem was a city of one hundred and sixty thousand people, with all lines of commerce carried by horses, mules and cattle. Therefore, a city so large without a sewer system, kept fires constantly burning to consume the refuse. Today, since Jerusalem is being restored, reports from there state the fires of Gehenna are again burning day and night. Look up the word "hell" in a Bible dictionary, or concordance and you will note quite a vivid description of this valley of Gehenna. The teaching of Jesus relative to people going to Gehenna only proves that the place to which He referred was a place of destruction, and not one of everlasting life in endless torture, as some try to infer.
4. Is there not a real hell fire of brimstone, into which wicked people are finally cast?
"But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death," Revelation 21:8.
NOTE: It will be seen that the real hell of the Bible is a hot place surely enough, and this book describes a hotter hell than most denominations believe in today. It teaches a hell so hot that it burns up and consumes everything that is placed in it. The Bible nowhere teaches that God fries, singes and burns people throughout all eternity, but the hell set forth in the Word of God is a place so hot that it devours the wicked, as will be clearly seen in the lesson under the heading, "The Punishment of the Wicked." See the index for this lesson.
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