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    February 9, 1899

    “Grace Abounding” The Present Truth 15, 6.

    E. J. Waggoner

    The sacrifices and offerings commanded to Israel of old were all intended to set before the people the work of Jesus Christ, “the Lamb of God which beareth away the sin of the world.” When Israel failed to see Christ in their sacrificial offerings, these were of no avail, and were no better than the sacrifices of the heathen. God did not regard them as offerings rendered unto Himself, but as worship given to some false god who only existed in the perverted imaginations of the people.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 81.1

    Thus it was possible for Israel to be guilty of idolatry, even while nominally worshipping Jehovah. “Did ye bring unto Me sacrifices and offerings in the wilderness forty years, O house of Israel. Yea, ye have borne Moloch [margin] and Chiun your images, the star of your god, which ye made to yourselves.” Amos 5:25, 26. The worship of Jehovah did not, like that of Moloch, call for the purposeless shedding of blood, but when Israel overlooked the teaching of their sin offerings, the blood was shed without avail, and the fact that this wholesale taking of life was done in the name of Jehovah rendered it no more acceptable in His sight than were the awful sacrifices by which Moloch was worshipped.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 81.2

    “Thou hast not called upon Me, O Jacob, but thou hast been weary of Me, O Israel. Thou hast not brought Me the small cattle of thy burnt offerings; neither hast thou honoured Me with thy sacrifices ... but thou hast made Me to serve with thy sins, thou hast wearied Me with thine iniquities.” Isaiah 43:22-24. Christ, bearing the sins of the whole world, is not a manifestation of God for three and a half years merely, but for the whole period of earthly history.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 81.3

    God has taken upon Himself to sustain the life of all His creatures, to provide them with life and breath and all things.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 81.4

    He places His life at their disposal and gives them a free choice as to what they will do with it. Not one thought or word or act ever came into existence, which was not rendered possible by God in supplying, the necessary power. Not a sin could be committed if it were not that God given life and strength to sinful men.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 81.5

    It is no burden to the Lord to maintain imperfect health and soundness the whole of His vast creation. “The God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth fainteth not, neither is weary.” Isaiah 40:26. But although it is no drain on the Lord to supply men with all the life they need, and more than they can use, it does weary Him to have His life used for purposes of sin. This is so foreign to His inclinations that it distresses Him beyond our comprehension. “Thou hast made Me to serve with thy sins, thou hast wearied Me with thine iniquities.”PTUK February 9, 1899, page 81.6

    “I, even I, am He that blotteth out thy transgressions for Mine own sake.” The Lord is more anxious than men are to make an end of sin. It wearies Him more than it does them. Therefore, for His own sake He blots it out. No one need fear that the Lord will not forgive his sins because they are too great. If he is weary of them, the Lord is much more so, and for His own sake He blots them out.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 82.1

    Since every soul on earth is a sinner, and all live by the Lord's life, it is evident that it is the Lord Himself who bears the whole burden of sin. Multitudes are not conscious of any burden themselves, but the Lord bears the burden of all, and whether they feel it or not, it wearies Him. Therefore it is true of the whole world that, for His own sake, God has blotted out their transgressions. He commits to His servants the ministry of reconciliation; “to wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto Himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; ... for He hath made Him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him.” 2 Corinthians 5:19-21.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 82.2

    But there are some who have sinned more deeply than the heathen. There are those who, knowing their Lord's will, have not done it. The Lord speaks to such a class in the first chapter of Isaiah, who offer a multitude of sacrifices and make many prayers, yet whose hands are red with the blood of souls, lost by their unfaithfulness. These have a form of godliness, but lack the power of it. Like the Pharisees of old, they make a fair show outwardly, but inwardly they are full of sin and uncleanness. The Lord is wearied enough when the heathen mike Him to serve with their sins, but those are infinitely worse than the heathen, for not only do they pervert God's life into the commission of the same sins, but they further make Him to serve, in that which is most detestable of all to Him, the sin of hypocrisy.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 82.3

    Surely we would think, the Lord must hate those who burden His life with that which is so repugnant to every instinct of His being, even using the strength He gives to lead astray and destroy other souls. He says, “Your appointed feasts My soul hateth: they are a trouble unto Me; I am weary to bear them.” Isaiah 1:14. But, since the underhanded sin of professed Christians, using God's life not only for their evil-doing, but also for the attempt to make it appear righteousness, is worse than the open sin of the heathen, the burden upon Him must be so much the heavier, and therefore His desire to get rid of the wearying burden must be so much the greater. More emphatically to them than to any others, comes the word, “I, even I, am He that blotteth out thy transgressions for Mine own sake.”PTUK February 9, 1899, page 82.4

    Because the silver is become dross, “thy princes are rebellious and companions of thieves,” every one seeking his own gain and oppressing the helpless, “therefore, saith the Lord, the Lord of hosts, the mighty One of Israel, Ah, I will ease Me of Mine adversaries, and avenge Me of Mine enemies.” Isaiah 1:24. God will blot out the sins that weary and burden Him, so that the greatest sinner need not be discouraged. Although we have added hypocrisy to guilt, if we will let the Lord deaf with our sins, He will gladly and promptly attend to their removal, and the heavier they are, the more assurance we have that God, for His own sake, will blot them out of remembrance. “Where sin abounded, grace did much more abound.”PTUK February 9, 1899, page 82.5

    “God is light and in Him is no darkness at all.” The sinful soul need not fear to find clouds of discouragement if he turns to the Lord, for the penitent will find in Him no darkness at all. “His going forth is prepared as the morning” and He sets His people in a path that “shineth more and more unto the perfect day.”PTUK February 9, 1899, page 82.6

    “Studies in the Gospel of John. Christian Giving. John 6:1-12The Present Truth 15, 6.

    E. J. Waggoner

    John 6:1-12

    Jesus had gone across the sea of Galilee, and as was usually the case whenever He went anywhere, “a great multitude followed Him.” Why was it that people flocked in such numbers around this poor man-a man so poor that He had no home, no place where He could lay His head? It was because He had something to give which they wanted. It was not food or money, although even in His poverty He did give those things; but such gifts were only secondary; the people could work and earn money, and buy bread, but He gave them freely that which money could not buy. They followed Him “because they saw His miracles which He did on them that were diseased.” He had a message of power, words of life,-and people were drawn to Him by an attraction which they could not understand or explain.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 82.7

    When Jesus saw the multitude around Him as He taught (for there were not fewer than five thousand men, besides women and children), He said to Philip, but in the hearing of all the disciples, “Whence shall we buy bread, that these may eat?” Philip made a hasty calculation, and said, “Two hundred pennyworth of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one of them may take a little.” Remember that the purchasing power of money was very different then from what it is now. A penny was the ordinary wage for a day's labour. See Matthew 20:1, 2. Two pence was a good deposit toward the lodging and care of an invalid at an inn. See Luke 10:30-35. Two hundred pence would therefore buy a great quantity of bread, yet not enough so that each one of the company could have just a taste, and Philip could see no way of helping the hungry crowd.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 83.1

    It was very evident to the disciples that no matter how great the need of the company, and how disposed they themselves were to assist them, the thing could not be done. So they said to Jesus, “Send the multitude away, that they may go into the villages, and buy themselves victuals.” Matthew 14:15. But even if this were done, many must have gone hungry, having no money to buy with. “Jesus said unto them, They need not depart; give ye them to eat.” Again the business sense of the disciples was brought into requisition, and they looked over their resources, and found so meagre a supply that it was useless to speak about it. Peter, acting as spokesman for the twelve, said, “There is a lad here which hath five barley loaves, and two small fishes; but what are they among so many?” Clearly nothing could be done. “Oh, no; it is useless to talk; we should like to feed these hungry people, but we have nothing worth mentioning to do it with, we have carefully considered the situation, and it is absolutely impossible to do anything. Oh, if we only had means!”PTUK February 9, 1899, page 83.2

    All this time Jesus “Himself knew what He would do.” The business calculations of the disciples, and the demonstration that they were in too straitened circumstances to allow of their doing anything to help, did not affect Him in the least. He was not discouraged at the prospect. Five loaves and two fishes? Oh, that is an abundance! “Make the men sit down.” Everything must be orderly. We don't want any pushing and crowding, any unseemly scramble for the overflow of food that is to be provided. There must be no chance for some weak, timid person to be overlooked. Moreover there must be quiet, so that all can have opportunity to think upon the wondrous gift of God, and upon the Giver. Let the men be still, that they may recognise God. So the men sat down, “and Jesus took the loaves; and when He had given thanks, He distributed to the disciples, and the disciples to them that were set down; and likewise of the fishes as much as they would. When they were filled, He said unto His disciples, Gather up the fragments that remain, that nothing be lost. Therefore they gathered them together, and filled twelve baskets with the fragments of the five barley loaves which remained over and above unto them that had eaten.”PTUK February 9, 1899, page 83.3

    Here is the story complete; only a few of the lessons that it teaches can be noted at present. For the first we may see the tender compassion of Jesus on the poor and needy. His heart was and is always touched by the sight of human need and suffering. Everything moves Him. He is “touched with the feeling of our infirmities.” But He doesn't rest content with mere pity and expressions of sympathy. He wastes no time in regrets that He is not able to help; but from His abundant fulness He supplies the want. His sympathy is practical, and always accomplishes something. He sympathises; He longs to do something to help; He knows what He will do; and He does it. He knows the need; He cares for it; and He is able and willing to relieve.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 83.4

    The Lord allows us to realise our helplessness. His question, “Whence shall we buy bread, that these may eat?” was calculated to emphasise the great need and their lack of means. But remember that the question was not one of doubt. “He Himself knew what He would do.” Let this case, then, stand as the type of all. How often we have felt our hearts stirred as we have seen poverty and suffering, and have longed to help, and have mourned our inability. Now that desperate situation, that was made so vivid to us, was only the repetition of the Lord's question to Philip, Whence shall we supply these hungry souls with food? And just as the question was asked then to prove the disciples, so the desperate need is set before us so vividly in order to prove us. How often we have been tested in this manner, and yet we have not learned the lesson. May we begin now.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 83.5

    Jesus would not send people away hungry. He would not allow the disciples to do so. He always feeds the hungry. Therefore we may be assured that when we allow people to go away hungry for food either for the body or the soul, we ignore or deny the presence of the Master among us. “He that saith he abideth in Him ought himseIf also so to walk even as He walked.” 1 John 2:6. “Verily, verily I say unto you, He that believeth on Me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto the Father.” John 14:12.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 83.6

    “They need not depart; give ye them to eat.” Why did Jesus say that?-Because it was so. Jesus did not trifle with the disciples. He knew what He would do; the question was, Did they know what they would do? Yes; they knew that they would send the multitude away empty; but they did not need to. His question to Philip was for the purpose of proving him, and the rest of the disciples as well. The words of Jesus show that if they had but recognised their opportunity they might have fed the multitude the same as He did. And the lesson is recorded for our sakes.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 83.7

    “How can we give when we have nothing?”-Just the same as Jesus did when He had nothing; for He did not do anything while here on this earth, except as man.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 83.8

    “Yes; but it pleased the Father that in Him all fulness should dwell, and it was of the abundant fulness that was in Him, that He fed the multitudes.” Very true; “and of His fulness have all we received.” John 1:16. The same Christ is alive to-day, and dwells among us; and if we but allow Him to dwell in our hearts by faith, we shall also “be filled with all the fulness of God.” Ephesians 3:19.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 83.9

    What a marvellous manifestation of the power of God's grace! that having nothing we should be able to give everything. “We then as workers together with Him beseech you that ye receive not the grace of God in vain;” and we approve ourselves as the ministers of God, “as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.” 2 Corinthians 6:1, 10.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 83.10

    Peter and John found a man at the gate of the temple in sore need. He asked for money, but Peter had none to give him. This did not, however, make it necessary for Peter to pass by with a sympathetic greeting and the remark, “Poor fellow! how I wish I could do something for him.” No; Peter gave the man something better than money,-something that money could not buy, but that which would enable him to get money if he needed it. When all God's professed people have Christ's abiding presence through the Holy Spirit, as a reality of which they are conscious, they will never pass a needy soul by without supplying more than he asks or thinks to receive.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 83.11

    God gives us richly all things to enjoy. “He giveth to all life, and breath, and all things.” Acts 17:25. Everybody therefore has everything given him. Most people, however, do not recognise the gifts of God. Not only do they not know God as the Giver of every good and perfect gift, but they do not know how abundantly He gives, even when they know that He does give something. It is the business of God's servants, therefore, “to open the blind eyes” (Isaiah 42:7), that men may know the boundless grace of God, and the gift by grace. They are to be “good stewards of the manifold grace of God.” 1 Peter 4:10. But oh, how sad it is when those who profess to know God are themselves blind to the riches of the glory of their inheritance. Who is there of us who has not discounted the words of Jesus, and the lessons that He has left us, so much that they have scarcely any more meaning to us than as mere stories? Shall we not learn?PTUK February 9, 1899, page 84.1

    As we have freely received, so are we freely to give. That is, we are to give as much as we have received, and on the same terms. We have received everything; we are to give everything. The fact that we do not have a big stock to carry about with us to exhibit, does not prove that we have nothing. God is our treasure house. “The unsearchable riches of Christ” are all and always “in Him,” for “in Him are all things created,” and “in Him all things consist,” and He is ours. He saves us the trouble of looking after and caring for our vast property, while we have all the use of it on demand. He says, “Concerning the work of My hands, command ye Me.” Isaiah 45:11. These are realities, and not empty words.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 84.2

    In all this God is trying to teach the world that “a man's life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth” or seemeth to have. He would have us know, and teach others, that He cares for us, and keeps us. He would have all man know that all things come from Him, so that all may give Him glory, by receiving from Him the things that He gives. True, He has said that the man who will not work shall not eat, but that does not teach us that man must support himself. No man on earth “earns his own living.” No man can earn a living. Life is too precious a commodity to be bought with money, or earned by human labour. Life is a gift. God “giveth to all life, and breath, and all things.” The occasions when He gives us help, when it is manifest that we are unable to do anything for ourselves, are to show us that even where we are most active we simply gather up what He showers down.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 84.3

    Now when Christ's followers rise to their privileges as “workers together with Him,” realising that He was on earth as a representative Man, showing what every child of God ought to do when occasion calls for it, the world will see that there is something better than what this world can give. They will not all believe, but the work that God designs for the world will speedily be accomplished. They will see that poverty does not handicap a man of God; that the expression “rich in faith” is not an empty phrase; and that the poor Christian can do what the wealthy worldling cannot. How to give with nothing is the lesson that God teaches, for He takes the things that are not, when He has a great work to do.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 84.4

    Therefore let us know that a great need only magnifies God's gift. Instead of despairing when we cannot see the way to accomplish a necessary thing, remember that Christ Himself is the way. Yea, He is a “new and living way.” With Him at hand, knowing His real presence, we do not need to be worried over “ways and means.” When the Lord asked Philip how they could buy bread for the multitude, Philip might well have answered, “Lord, Thou knowest, for Thou art the Bread.”PTUK February 9, 1899, page 84.5

    Christ “gave Himself for us,” and the reality of the gift is demonstrated in the feeding of the multitude, for He literally gave Himself to them. But as He Himself said, He could do nothing of Himself. It was the Father dwelling in Him who did the works. He comes to dwell in believers, that they may be filled with the fulness of God, so that they may also do the same as He did. We see that the disciples did give the people bread, after all. They took it from Jesus, and gave it to the multitude. That is to show us that we may feed the hungry when we are in touch with Him. Let each servant of Christ take the bread of life fresh from Him, and pass it on.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 84.6

    As Christ gave Himself, so are we to give ourselves. This we can really do when we can say, “I am crucified with Christ, nevertheless, I live; yet not I, but, Christ liveth in me.” Galatians 2:20. He who does not give himself gives nothing, even though he bestows thousands of gold and silver. He who gives himself (and he can do it only by the grace of Christ dwelling in him), gives everything, that any soul can need, even though he has not a penny.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 84.7

    What will then follow?-The same thing that took place with Jesus. Multitudes ran after Him, because He gave them Himself. So “thou shalt call a nation that thou knowest not, and nations that knew not thee shall run unto thee because of the Lord thy God, and for the Holy One of Israel; for He hath glorified thee.” Isaiah 55:5. If He has glorified thee, then “the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising.” Isaiah 60:3.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 84.8

    All will receive abundantly, but there will be no waste. Doubtless there were many “unworthy” persons in the crowd that day. He fed them all; for He was the Son of the Highest, “who maketh His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and unjust.” Matthew 5:46. He even causes it to “rain on the earth where no man is; in the wilderness, wherein there is no man.” Job 38:26. The ocean also, where there is no need of water, receives showers equally with the dry land. So lavish is God with His gifts. Yet there is no waste; for He draweth again all the drops of water to Himself. He gathers up the fragments, so that nothing is lost. All comes back to Him, to be again given forth. What if the recipient be unworthy? Know that God does not ask you to give because He needs your help to supply the needy, but that you may be blessed in giving. If it were simply to see that somebody's wants were supplied, God could do that without your appearance on the scene. He allows you to share His work, that you may be partaker of His riches and joy; and this is accomplished for you, no matter what be the character of the one helped. So to him that gives shall there be given. That, which he imparts, namely the life of God, will come back to him again, to make him doubly rich. Thus may we be channels for the great stream of life that flows from God throughout all the universe, and returning to His bosom flows forth again ever fresh and new.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 84.9

    “Little Folks. The Gospel of the Spring. Seeds” The Present Truth 15, 6.

    E. J. Waggoner


    The very first thing that you look for, the first sign that the winter is over and the spring is here,-what is it? Wise king Solomon tells us what he says:-PTUK February 9, 1899, page 90.1

    “For, lo, the winter is past;
    The rain is over and gone;
    The flowers appear on the earth.”
    PTUK February 9, 1899, page 90.2

    Long ago the Chinese put the same thought into this short and beautiful legend:-PTUK February 9, 1899, page 90.3

    “The flower opens, and, behold! another year.”PTUK February 9, 1899, page 90.4

    First comes the pure and delicate snowdrop, looking almost like a living snowflake, or as if the mild breath of the spring,PTUK February 9, 1899, page 90.5

    “by some transforming power,
    Had changed an icicle into a flower.”
    PTUK February 9, 1899, page 90.6

    This is followed in turn by the crocus, the violet, the hyacinth, the primrose, and so on all through the year. Those of you who have gardens, and love to watch the sweet things growing there, know that each month brings some new beauties to adorn the British flower garden.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 90.7

    And not in the garden only, but in the woods, in the fields where by and by you will see the red clover, the waving corn and dancing oats, and in the orchards,-think of the richness, as well as the beauty, that is coming out of the earth.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 90.8

    Where does all this beauty and fruitfulness spring from? Perhaps some of you will remember some of the lessons we had together about seeds in the autumn, when we learned that the real seed, from which all other seeds have come, and from which everything in the earth is brought forth, is the Word of God. For in the beginning God said, “Let the earth bring forth grass,” trees, fruit, whose seed is in itself. So all the wonders springing from the ground are the visible Word of God,-God's Word made into forms that we can see and touch.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 90.9

    Your words, you know, express your thoughts; by them you are able to give out the thoughts that come into your mind. The Bible tells us that “as a man thinketh in his heart, so is he.” So your words, which tell what you think in your heart, show just what you yourself are.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 90.10

    And it is just so with the words of God. They express His thoughts, and so show us what He is. And in all these beautiful forms into which God, by the power of His Word, has put his thoughts, He is making it possible for us to see Him, to learn of His nature.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 90.11

    There are a great many different seeds, for there are many, many thousands of different kinds of plants. Think of it! Each tiny seed has wrapped up in it a thought of God, and as it springs up and unfolds in leaf and bud and flower and fruit, we may read in it the thoughts of God, and so learn to know and love Him.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 90.12

    Be sure to sow some seeds this spring, if you can have ever so small a piece of ground, or only a window box or flower-pot to put them in. Think as you look at the little seeds before you put them in the earth, of the wonderful, powerful, beautiful life of God that is in them. And as you watch them spring up and grow, and unfold and develop, in these plants which are His visible Word God Himself will talk with you, telling you His thoughts and revealing Himself to you.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 90.13

    “Multiplying the Seed” The Present Truth 15, 6.

    E. J. Waggoner

    Did you ever think how much is wrapped up in one little seed that you can hold in your hand? Take a grain of wheat, for instance, and think what would come from it if at the proper time it should be put into good ground.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 90.14

    The Roman Governor and great naturalist Pliny tells of a single plant of corn that grew in Africa, with 340 stems, bearing 340 ears,-at least 10,000 grains of corn all springing from one seed!PTUK February 9, 1899, page 90.15

    As many as 12,780 grains have sprung from a single grain of the famous corn of Smyrna, called “the miraculous corn.” This was indeed “miraculous corn,” but so is every ear of corn that you have ever seen, or that has ever come from the ground. For is it not a wonderful miracle of the power of God that any seed should grow and multiply in this way?PTUK February 9, 1899, page 90.16

    When you hear about Jesus feeding a great multitude of people, more than five thousand, with only five loaves and two fishes, you think this a wonderful miracle, do you not? And perhaps you wish you could have been there to have seen Jesus doing this wonderful work, and to have tasted the bread that was made by His power.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 90.17

    Well, Jesus is doing the very same thing to-day. You may see Him at work, you may taste of the bread as He multiplies it for you by His power.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 90.18

    What makes the little grain of wheat that is sown in the ground in the Spring grow and spring up “first the blade, then the ear, after that the full corn in the ear,” bringing forth thirty, forty, sixty, and an hundredfold? It is the presence and life of Jesus in the seed,-His power working to-day just as it did nearly nineteen hundred years ago when He multiplied the loaves.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 90.19

    This is the Lord's usual way of multiplying the bread and feeding the multitude. Then is not the bread, made from the wheat, that you have upon your table every day, just as wonderful as the loaves with which Jesus fed the five thousand. And have you not just as much reason to give thanks to Him for it as they had?PTUK February 9, 1899, page 90.20

    Remember, too, what Jesus said to the people after He had fed them, “I am the Bread of life.” And this is what He is saying to us in the seed, the corn from which the bread is made with which He feeds us every day. For it is His life in the seed that makes it grow and bring forth fruit, and that gives us new life when we eat it.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 91.1

    So Jesus is feeding you continually with His own life. Think of this every time you eat the food that He gives you, and ask Him to use in His service, to His own glory, all the life and strength that he is giving to you day by day.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 91.2

    “Jottings” The Present Truth 15, 6.

    E. J. Waggoner

    -Tabby, the name of a peculiarly marked oat, was so called because its markings resembled those of a watered silk made at Atabi.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 94.1

    -It has been found in Switzerland that in building a railway, labourers could work only one-third as long at a height of 10,000 feet as a mile lower.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 94.2

    -Artificial legs and arms were in use in Egypt as early as B.C. 700. They were made by the priests, who were the physicians of that early time.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 94.3

    -The great Siberian railway is making Tapia progress. A powerful steam ferry will tramport the trains across Lake Baikal. It is stated that 200,003 Russian emigrants settled in Siberia during 1898.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 94.4

    -Seven miles an hour is the camel's best pace, nor can it maintain this rate over two hours. Its usual speed is about five miles an hour-a slow, lounging pace, beyond which it is dangerous to urge them.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 94.5

    -The diminution of coat of production effected in modern times by the improvements in processes of manufacture is wonderful. Thus a gross of steel pens, which are sold to-day for half-a-crown, formerly cost ?7 to produce.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 94.6

    -A large crowd assembled outside a Mormon meeting-house in Bristol, instigated by the Anti-Mormon League, and made a hostile demonstration. The situation became serious and the Mormons had to be rescued by the police.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 94.7

    -Mr. Eagan, the American Commissary General, who was court marshaled for making insulting references to General Miles, has been sentenced to dismissal from the service, but has been recommended to the mercy of the Executive.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 94.8

    -There is a plant in Jamaica called the life plant, because it is almost impossible to kill it. When a leaf is out off and hung up by a string, it sends out white, thread like roots, gathers moisture from the air, and begins to grow new leaves.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 94.9

    -Reports received in Berlin state that the Turks have 30,000 picked troops on the Bulgarian and Servian frontiers in view of a possible rising in Macedonia. Russia's attitude in somewhat doubtful, conflicting statements having been made.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 94.10

    -The Egyptian reed, which was used for making the pens found in Egyptian tombs, is a hard variety, growing to about the diameter of an ordinary goose quill. Pens made from it last for a day or two, and are said to do excellent work.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 94.11

    -The Dreyfus case has been taken out of the hands of the Court that was trying it, and is to be brought before a Court consisting of all the judges of the Cour de Cassation. This is regarded as lessening the chances of Dreyfus being pronounced innocent.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 94.12

    -Towards the end of May a Congress of Specialists will meet in Berlin for the discussion of tuberculosis as the national disease, and for the consideration of the best methods of averting its ravages. Foreign Governments will be asked to send delegates.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 94.13

    -An advanced ritualistic church in the south of London spends ?250 a year on their choir, surplices, incense, etc., but at a recent sermon on behalf of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts, their offertory amounted to only twelve shillings and sixpence.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 94.14

    “Back Page” The Present Truth 15, 6.

    E. J. Waggoner

    A Peace Crusade has been organised by Mr. W. T. Stead, and meetings are being held in many large cities with the view of quickening English enthusiasm for the Czar's peace proposals. Among the latest names which have been added to the movement are those of Lord Roberts, and Mr. W. H. Russell, the war correspondent. The latter writes:-PTUK February 9, 1899, page 96.1

    It is just because I have seen so much of the unutterable misery and desolation caused by war in the nine campaigns in which it has been my lot to be a camp follower that I would, with all my heart and soul, pray that the terrible temptation to settle quarrels by the arbitrament of the sword which is afforded by the great armies of the conscription should be resisted and overcome.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 96.2

    Mr. A. J. Balfour has caused considerable division in political and church circles by his proposal to establish a Roman Catholic University in Dublin. Many of his own party are bitterly opposed to the idea. What with this proposal, and the burning question of ritualism in the Church of England, it would seem that politicians will soon have their hands full in dealing with church matters. Some are blaming the Government for giving any recognition to Roman Catholic claims, but at the same time are calling for forcible intervention to restrain ritualism in the church. They object to political interference with matters of religion, except which they hope to gain by it.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 96.3

    The only way to have pure religion and undefiled before God is to keep unspotted from the world. James 1:27. Politics are all right in their place, but they do not con corn the relation which God has established between Himself and men. When those who profess the service of Christ, and even to be ministers of the Gospel, concern themselves with affairs of worldly government, they show that they have less faith in the words of Christ. “I have given then, Thy word; and the world hath hated them. Because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.” John 17:14.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 96.4

    The friendship of the world is still enmity with God. James 4:4. The Lord does not say that the world will change for the better, and that the conditions of things will be so vastly improved over what it was when He was upon earth, that His instructions, then given, will become obsolete, and His servants may with advantage concern themselves with politics. He warns us that the last days will be specially perilous times. It is true that men will have a form of godliness, but this will only increase the peril, for “evil man and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived.” “Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.” 2 Timothy 3:1-13.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 96.5

    We may be sure, therefore, from the Word of God, that when any perils arise which seem to threaten His church, whether Roman Catholic aggression, Ritualistic practices, or any other evil, the remedy will not be found by appealing to the institutions of the world, for redress and help. Such a resort should not enter into the mind of a Christian. What then, shall we suffer these evils to grow and crush the church of Christ?PTUK February 9, 1899, page 96.6

    In the first place, it will not prevent the evils, but will only increase them, to invoke the assistance of the world from whose spirit the whole trouble arises. In the second place, God is well able to keep that which is committed unto Him. He could preserve the apostolic church in the face of bitter persecution, and He is still able to keep His sheep so that none can pluck them out of His hand. But His people have become proud and lifted up, and they do not love His way because it is a humble one. Paul's message to the churches, “that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God,” would not be well received now. As seen as a shadow of tribulation appears, or even a prospect of unequal distribution of the world's favours, there is an immediate outcry and an appeal to earthly powers for protection and help.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 96.7

    Yet in times of peril and persecution, God's people, by turning to Him with all the heart, might find the help and strength they vainly seek from the State. “If, when ye do well and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with God. For even hereunto were ye called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow His steps: who did no sin, neither was guile found in His mouth; who, when He was reviled, reviled not again: when He suffered, He threatened not; but committed Himself to Him that judgeth righteously.” 1 Peter 2:20, 24. This is the attitude Christ's church should occupy at the present time, on every question for which they now seek the aid of Parliament, for it is the example of their Lord and Master. It worked out all right in His case, and if the servants are content to be as their Master, God will show Himself strong in their behalf. If they are not content to be as their Master they are not worthy of Him.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 96.8

    The Catholic Times states that the Pope at the instance of a well-known French priest, has issued a Brief granting special indulgences to those who read the Bible and says,-PTUK February 9, 1899, page 96.9

    This act is, in our opinion, one of the most important that has taken place in the course of a Pontificate filled with facts of far-reaching importance. Not that there is any basis for the Protestant charge that Catholics do not read the Bible; but the reading of the sacred text will undoubtedly be promoted in an extraordinary degree by the concession of the spiritual privileges which the Pope has now granted.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 96.10

    The mere reading of the Bible to earn “spiritual privileges” which come from another source will profit nobody. The Word itself is Spirit and life. When men receive it, as it is in deed and in truth, the Word of God, it will work effectually in them (2 Thessalonians 2:13), and by its exceeding great and precious promises they are made partakers of the Divine nature. 2 Peter 1:4. It is to be hoped, however, that men who may be led to read the Scriptures by the Pope's Brief will discover their true character, and find in them spiritual privileges which are real ones, and not false promises.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 96.11

    A writer in the Youth's Companion complains of the ignorance of the Bible which prevails so widely amongst young, and gives several illustrations of it. One of these reveals an ignorance which is indeed lamentable.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 96.12

    I once asked a graduating class of young men in college, said a teacher, why the Jews kept Saturday as the Sabbath, while Christians observe the Sunday. Not one could tell me, and yet the majority of them undoubtedly belonged to church-going families.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 96.13

    But the ignorance is on the part of the teacher, not the scholars. They could not be expected to answer from the Bible a question on which the Bible has nothing to say. If the teacher had not been so ignorant of the Bible himself, he would have known that it gives no reason whatever why Christians should observe Sunday, instead of the Sabbath of the Lord, the only Lord's Day, which was sanctified in Eden, commanded from Sinai, and kept by Christ and His apostles.PTUK February 9, 1899, page 96.14

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