Larger font
Smaller font
  • Results
  • Related
  • Featured
No results found for: "".
  • Weighted Relevancy
  • Content Sequence
  • Relevancy
  • Earliest First
  • Latest First
    Larger font
    Smaller font

    August 31, 1893

    “Front Page” The Present Truth 9, 22.


    E. J. Waggoner

    “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 337.1

    Confession is acknowledgment. The word “confess” is derived originally from words meaning, “to speak together,” that is, to speak the same thing-to agree. God says that all men are sinners, and He also, by His Spirit and His word, tells us of the particular instances in which we have sinned, saying, as through the prophet Nathan He did to David, “Thou art the man.” To confess, to speak together, or agree with the Lord, is to respond, “That is true; I have sinned.”PTUK August 31, 1893, page 337.2

    Many people suppose that the Lord requires us to confess sin, in order that we may be humiliated. They think that the object of confession is to make one so ashamed that he will not do the thing again. But that is a mistake. None of God’s requirements are arbitrary. He requires us to confess, because confession of sin means agreement with Him; and unless we are agreed with Him there is no life for us. He desires us to walk with Him; and two cannot walk together except they are agreed. So it is impossible that we should live with Him unless we are agreed with Him. Indeed, who would wish to? It is very trying to live even for a short time with one with whom we are in constant disagreement. That would be the very opposite of heaven. God intends that His people shall “delight themselves in the abundance of peace.”PTUK August 31, 1893, page 337.3

    “By the law is the knowledge of sin,” and “the law is spiritual.” “Spiritual” means of the nature of the Spirit. Accordingly it is the Spirit of God that convinces men of sin. If God did not do this, we should not know that we had sinned. “The heart is deceitful above all things; and desperately wicked; who can know it? I the Lord search the heart.” Jeremiah 17:9, 10. God alone can know what is in man. How foolish, then, when God tells us that we are doing wrong, for us to say, “I can’t see it; it doesn’t seem to me to be wrong.” Of course not; and that is why the Lord shows it to us. For us to say that we have not sinned, when God says that we have, is to charge God either with ignorance or falsehood; and who can expect to be saved while making such a charge against God? There would be war in heaven at once, for we would be setting our will and our judgment against God’s.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 337.4

    Sin is a hateful thing. God so regards it. His great love for us is shown in that He loves us while we are full of sin. Knowing the terrible nature of sin, He wishes to deliver us from it. Therefore He makes known to us our danger, that we may flee for refuge to the hope set before us in Christ. Now since confession means agreement, it is plain that when we truly confess sin we agree with all that God says about its nature. And since he tells us of our sin, in order that we may be freed from it, it is also plain that confession of sin means that we desire to be freed from it. Therefore as soon as we truly confess sin we are fully agreed with God, and since He is righteous, His righteousness is ours.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 337.5

    Since true confession involves desire to be separated from sin, it follows that it means restoration wherever anything has been unlawfully taken; for it is evident that no one can be freed from the sin, while resolutely clinging to it. Restoration, therefore, even though it be fourfold, is not for the purpose of appeasing God with a bribe, but it is the natural manifestation of the earnest desire to be rid of the sin.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 337.6

    But it must not be supposed that making “a good confession” means the recollection and acknowledgement of every act of sin that has ever been committed. That is an impossibility. In the first place, life would not be long enough for a man to recount all his sins, even if he knew them; and in the second place, no man can know all his sin. The sins that lie hidden in the heart,-the sinful nature,-are as deadly as those that have come to the light. So confession involves the acknowledging to God that there is no good thing in us, and praying, “Cleanse Thou me from secret faults.” Psalm 19:12. And this alone is sufficient to show that confession should be to God only, and not to man, except to the man whom we may have offended. For confession does not mean the telling of news, but the acknowledging of a known fault.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 337.7

    One thing should not be forgotten, and that is that forgiveness immediately follows confession, and that forgiveness of sin means cleansing from it. David, blinded by passion, did not realise that he had grievously sinned. The prophet Nathan, in a parable, set the wickedness of the act clearly before him, and then said, “Thou art the man.” David immediately exclaimed “I have sinned against the Lord,” and instantly the response came, “The Lord also hath put away thy sin.” 2 Samuel 13:13. As soon as the sin is really confessed it is forgiven, and the soul is cleansed from it. Well may we say to the Lord: “Who is a God like unto Thee, that pardoneth iniquity, and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of His heritage? He retaineth not His anger for ever, because he delighteth in mercy. He will turn again, He will have compassion upon us; He will subdue our iniquities; and Thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea.” Micah 7:18, 19.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 337.8

    “Christian Unity” The Present Truth 9, 22.


    E. J. Waggoner

    The Christian Commonwealth in a recent issue discourses at some length on the above-named subject, and says, “The melancholy impression prevails in most minds that Christian unity is practically impossible.” Looking at the vast array of sects into which Christendom is at present divided, and at the process of division still going on, this “melancholy impression” seems to be well-founded; but in reality it is not so. Christian unity is a natural condition. Outside of Christianity there is no unity; for unity, like all other things desirable, is of God; but this union in the church of Christ is something painfully unnatural. There is “one Lord, one faith, one baptism,” and “by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free.” Ephesians 4:5; 1 Corinthians 12:13. No allowance has to be made for differences of race or position, or any other distinction by which the people of earth are divided in worldly things. In the church of Christ all distinctions are obliterated, and the members are all one. “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.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 338.1

    The trouble is not with God’s plan, nor with the provisions He has made for unity among His followers, but with those who are counted as composing His church. They are divided because they are not in a state of spirituality. “From whence come wars and fighting among you? Come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members?” James 4:1. This is the source of strife and divisions in the church. “God is not the author of confusion.”PTUK August 31, 1893, page 338.2

    It is useless to attempt to unite the discordant fragments of Christendom into one harmonious body, through the methods that are commonly tried. No amount of argument or debating or summoning of councils or revising of creeds will ever secure the result. How then can it be obtained? The answer to this question has been given by Jesus Christ. “That they all may be one; as Thou, art in Me, and I in Thee, that they also may be one in us... I in them, and Thou in Me, that they may be made perfect in one.” John 17:21-23. It is by the possession of the Spirit. There is but one Spirit; and when all are controlled and actuated by it, laying aside self, no other condition but that of Christian unity will be possible.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 338.3

    “The True Church” The Present Truth 9, 22.


    E. J. Waggoner

    “God is love; and he that dwelleth in God, and God in him. Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment; because as He is, so are we in this world.” 1 John 4:16, 17.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 338.4

    Concerning His disciples Christ prayed: “Sanctify them through Thy truth; Thy word is truth. As Thou hast sent Me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world. And for their sakes I sanctify Myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth. Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on Me through their word; that they all may be one; as Thou, Father, art in Me, and I in Thee, that they also may be one in us; that the world may believe that Thou hast sent Me.” John 17:17-21.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 338.5

    Again He said to them, and to all them also who should believe on Him through their word: “If ye were of the world, the world would love his own; but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.” John 15:19.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 338.6

    In the above text the words “chosen out,” are akin to the word which is rendered “church”; for that which is in modern language called the church is really the chosen, or called out. Therefore in the above texts Christ addresses what is commonly termed His church, and we learn from them that the church of Christ must be the same in this world that He Himself was when on earth. The following Scriptures make this still more clear.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 338.7

    “He is before all things, and by Him all things consist. And He is the head of the body, the church.” Colossians 1:17, 18. God wrought great power “in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead, and set Him at His own right hand in heavenly places, far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come; and hath put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be the head over all things to the church, which is His body, the fulness of Him that filleth all in all.” Ephesians 1:20-23.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 338.8

    The church is the body of Christ. This does not mean that anything that calls itself the church is therefore necessarily the body of Christ, but that nothing is the church unless it is the body of Christ; and nothing is the body of Christ unless it is the living manifestation of the Spirit of Christ. Only those are Christ’s who have His Spirit. Romans 8:9. The body of Christ is that which is directly connected with the Head, so that it “increaseth with the increase of God.” Colossians 2:19. In short, it is “the fulness of Him that filleth all in all.”PTUK August 31, 1893, page 338.9


    “For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office; so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.” Romans 12:4, 5.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 338.10

    “Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular. And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healing, helps, governments, diversities of tongues.” 1 Corinthians 12:27, 28.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 338.11

    “Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. And there are differences of administrations, but the same Lord. And there are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all. But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal. For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; to another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit; to another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues; but all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as He will.” 1 Corinthians 12:4-11.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 338.12

    “But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ. Wherefore He saith, When He ascended up on high, He led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.... . And He gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.” Ephesians 4:7-12.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 338.13

    At one time there arose a question in the little company which Jesus had chosen out,-the church,-as to which should be the greatest, and Jesus said unto them: “The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them; and they that exercise authority upon them are called benefactors. But ye shall not be so; but he that is greatest among you, let him be as the younger; and he that is chief, as he that doth serve.” Luke 22:25, 26. And again He said: “Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them, and they that are great exercise authority upon them. But it shall not be so among you; but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister; and whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant; even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give His life a ransom for many.” Matthew 20:25-28.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 339.1

    The apostles Barnabas and Paul “ordained them elders in every church,” as they returned from their first missionary tour. Acts 14:23. The apostle Paul wrote to Titus: “For this cause left I thee in Crete, that thou shouldest set in order the things that are wanting, and ordain elders in every city, as I had appointed thee; if any be blameless, the husband of one wife, having faithful children not accused of riot or unruly. For a bishop must be blameless, as the steward of God; not self-willed, not soon angry, not given to wine, no striker, not given to filthy lucre.” Titus 1:5-7.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 339.2

    Here we learn that an elder is the same as a bishop. The terms “elder” and “bishop” are interchangeable. The word “bishop” is episcopos, from which we have “episcopal,” and means one who oversees. It is used in Acts 20:28, in the apostle Paul’s address to the elders of the church in Ephesus: “Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which He hath purchased with His own blood.” Here again we see that elders and bishops are the same.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 339.3

    But in this last text we have a reference to another title belonging to the same persons. The apostle exhorted the elders to feed the church of God. Accordingly we read in 1 Peter 5:1-4: “The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed; feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; neither as being lords over God’s heritage, but being ensamples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.”PTUK August 31, 1893, page 339.4

    Here we see that the elders have a flock to feed, under the direction of Christ, who is the chief Shepherd, they being under-shepherds. Now “shepherd,” and “pastor” are the same thing, the latter being simply the Latin equivalent of the former. So we learn that there is no difference between elders, bishops, and pastors. The different words represent the same office. The fact that in Philippians 1:1 “bishops and deacons” are mentioned the same as elders and deacons elsewhere, shows that bishops and elders are the same, since there is no intervening office between bishops and deacons. The duties attached to those offices are fully set forth in the scriptures above referred to.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 339.5

    “Church Authority” The Present Truth 9, 22.


    E. J. Waggoner

    The words of Christ must ever be our guide. They cannot be too often repeated. Again we quote: “Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them, and they that are great exercise authority upon them. But it shall not be so among you; but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister; and whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant; even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give His life a ransom for many.” Matthew 20:25-28.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 339.6

    It should be understood that the word “minister,” in the above text, does not necessarily mean “preacher.” A minister is a servant, one who ministers or serves. In the text just quoted, the word “servant” indicates a more complete and humble servitude than the word “minister.” The difference is shown in the margin of the Revised Version, where we have “servant” given as the equivalent of “minister,” and “bondservant” as the equivalent of “servant.” The word rendered “minister” is the ordinary word for servant, while that rendered “servant” is the usual word for slave. Now note the gradation in which they are used by the Lord. He who will be great in the church, must be a servant; but he who will be chief, must be a bondservant. That is, the degree of greatness depends upon the completeness of the service and the giving up of self to Christ.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 339.7

    So we learn from the words of the Saviour, that there is to be no such thing in the church of Christ as the exercise of authority such as is known in civil government. The church is on an entirely different plane from the State. There is no likeness whatever between them. The kingdom of Christ is a thing entirely different from human ideas of government. He said, “My kingdom is not of this world.” John 18:36. They who think to understand the working of Christ’s kingdom by studying earthly models, are proceeding in the wrong way, and are working in the dark.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 339.8

    We have read in 1 Corinthians 12:28 that “governments” are among the gifts that God has bestowed upon the church; but we shall come more closely to God’s idea of government if we note that the Revised Version gives the alternative reading, “wise counsels.” One of the titles of Christ, as the one upon whose shoulder the government is laid, is “Counselor”; He is “wonderful in counsel,” and so He provides wise counsels for the government of His church, said counsel to be derived solely from Him, who alone is the source of wisdom. He governs by love. His counsel is “the counsel of peace.”PTUK August 31, 1893, page 339.9

    Recall again the words of 1 Peter 5:3. The elders or bishops he exhorts not to be “lords over God’s heritage, but being ensamples to the flock.” There can therefore be in the true church of Christ no such thing as a “Lord Bishop.” That is one of the fruits of the unlawful connection of the church with the world. Christ is the only Lord; but here again we shall grievously err if we think of Him as occupying the “lordly” position of earthly lords. He is “meek and lowly in heart” (Matthew 11:29), and all men have to learn humility from Him who is “Lord over all.” He calls upon them to humble themselves to walk with Him. Micah 6:8, margin.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 339.10

    The church of Christ, as directed by the Lord Himself, is the only place on earth where “liberty, equality, and fraternity” can be fully realised. The apostle Peter proceeds, “Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility; for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble.” 1 Peter 5:5. The trouble with earthly associations formed for the purpose of promoting liberty and equality on earth, is that they are only human organisations, directed only by human wisdom and human power, and among men self is bound to predominate. Only the Spirit of Christ is unselfish.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 339.11

    “Rank,” as known among men, is unknown to the church of Christ. There is no such thing as one setting himself up above another, or allowing himself to be so placed or considered. That pertains to the princes of this world, but the words of Christ are, “It shall not be so among you.” Christ “emptied Himself,” and therefore self has no place in His body, the church. To the Jews He said, “How can ye believe, which receive honour one of another, and seek not the honour that cometh from God?” John 5:44. Through the apostle Paul He said, “Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another.” Romans 12:10. Again, “Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.” Philippians 2:3. Love “seeketh not her own.” 1 Corinthians 13:5. “Be not ye called Rabbi; for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren.” Matthew 23:8.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 340.1


    The Lord has, however, actually guarded against any such thing as disorder or anarchy. We are not to understand, because there is no such thing as rank in the church, that each one is independent of every other one, and that no one is to concern himself with the conduct of any other. Let the Scriptures themselves give us the relation that all the members of the church of Christ sustain to one another:-PTUK August 31, 1893, page 340.2

    “There are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all.” “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 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. And if they were all one member, where were the body? But now are they many members, yet one body. And the eye cannot say unto the hand, I have no need of thee; nor again the head to the feet, I have no need of you. Nay, much more those members of the body, which seem to be more feeble, are necessary.” “God hath tempered the body together, having given more abundant honour to that part which lacked; that there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another.” 1 Corinthians 12:6, 12, 14-22, 24, 25.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 340.3

    We see from this, that although there are different offices and gifts in the church, no one member is any more necessary than another. Neither are there to be any to have no responsibility. One may be in a position to do seemingly twice as much work as another, yet he is no more necessary to the work than one who occupies a humbler place. If the one in the lowest place is doing the work which God has given him there to do, then his place is just as important as that of the one in the highest place. There is no place in God’s plan for arrogance on the one hand, nor for fawning servility or fear on the other. “One is your Master, even Christ; and all ye our brethren.” “The head of every man is Christ.” 1 Corinthians 11:3. Therefore there are no such things in the true church as “superior officers.” Christ is the only Superior. The command, “Let each esteem other better than themselves,” applies to those who have great gifts, as well as to those of less ability. Each member sees in every other one the representative of Christ, and esteems him accordingly. This mutual esteem is not brought about, however, by vote, nor by resolution, nor by the signing of any articles, but by the same Spirit of God dwelling in each.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 340.4

    In the human body every member is as much concerned to protect every other member, as to protect itself. Each different member and organ has a different work to do, there is perfect order and harmony. This is because they all receive orders from one common centre. The hand is joined to the arm, yet it acts in obedience to orders from the head. The last joint of the finger is connected with the one just above it, yet it is not directed by it, but by the head. Every part has direct communication with the head. So in the church, different members have different offices, each one having a work, yet while no one controls another, all agree. Indeed, it is only when some begin to exercise authority over others, that disagreement begins. The Spirit of Christ in every member makes all act in unison, just as do the nerves the organs in the body. Christ may use some members to convey His will to others, yet the message is to be received only as from Christ, and not as from a man.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 340.5

    Thus there is equality, while there is the greatest diversity. No one can despise another, or look with contempt upon his inferior gifts. “For who maketh thee to differ from another? and what hast thou that thou didst not receive? now if thou didst receive it, why dost thou glory, as if thou hadst not received it?” 1 Corinthians 4:7. Christ is the only Head of the Church, and all the life of the church must be that which is received from Him. The church is useful only as each member “holding the Head, from which all the body by joints and bands having nourishment ministered, and knit together, increaseth with the increase of God.” Colossians 2:19. There is perfect independence, because the members of the church are built upon Christ, and not on one another; and there is also perfect unity, and subjection one to another, because all are filled by one Spirit and one mind,-the Spirit and mind of Christ.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 340.6

    Men will greatly admire the work of the mighty fly wheel in a great engine, and think nothing of the band; yet without the band the wheel would be useless, so that they are of equal importance; neither could do its work without the other. The smallest bolts in a well-constructed piece of machinery is as important as the largest beam, since without the bolt the larger part will be useless. So in the church of Christ no one member, no matter what his office, can despise the humblest member. “Much more those members of the body, which seem to be more feeble, are necessary.”PTUK August 31, 1893, page 340.7

    There was a time when seventy elders were chosen, and the Spirit of the Lord came upon them, so that they prophesied. But there were two young men in the camp, upon whom the Spirit of prophecy also rested; and Joshua said, “My lord, Moses, forbid them.” But Moses replied, “Enviest thou for my sake? would God that all the Lord’s people were prophets, and that the Lord would put His Spirit upon them!” Numbers 11:28, 29. That wish of Moses indicates something of what the true church of Christ will be when it really becomes “the fulness of Him that filleth all in all.” It is what is set forth in Ephesians 4:7-16, and 1 Corinthians 12. “Unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.” “The manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal.” Christ has given “to every man his work.” Mark 13:34. The work of many may be only that of helping in a very humble capacity, yet it is as necessary as any other.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 340.8

    That which Moses wished is, indeed, actually promised in the Scriptures: “And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of My Spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams; and on My servants and on My handmaidens I will pour out in those days of My Spirit; and they shall prophesy.” Acts 2:17, 18.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 341.1

    “Church Courts” The Present Truth 9, 22.


    E. J. Waggoner

    We have seen that everything that applies to the individual, applies to the Church of Christ as a whole. Those who are Christ’s must have the Spirit of Christ; they must have the mind in them that was in Christ. So the church is to be “the fulness of Him that filleth all in all.” It is to be simply the aggregate of representatives of Christ upon earth, therefore the perfect representative of Christ. But because the church is the representative of Christ on earth, that does not give it the right to assume a lordly position. Christ tells His followers to learn of Him, that He is meek and lowly in heart. His life was the manifestation of that love that “seeketh not her own.” It was a life of humble service. He gave everything, and claimed nothing for Himself. He did not even plead His own cause when He was falsely accused, “but committed His cause to Him that judgeth righteously.”PTUK August 31, 1893, page 341.2

    Neither does the church have the right of sitting in judgment upon any, much less the right of pronouncing sentence. The Father “hath committed all judgment unto the Son;” yet even Christ Himself does not judge now. God “hath appointed a day in the which He will judge the world in righteousness by that Man whom He hath ordained; whereof He hath given the assurance unto all men, in that He hath raised Him from the dead.” Acts 17:31. It is impossible that He should be at the same time the Advocate and the Judge. It is impossible that He should condemn men whom He is labouring to save. “For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.” John 3:17.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 341.3

    There is a prevalent idea that religious condemnation and persecution in all its phases is wrong only when the wrong persecutes the right. Now it is a fact that none but those who are in the wrong do ever persecute, although those who are persecuted may also be in the wrong. But the fact that people are in error gives no others the right to persecute them in any way. The judging of a person, and the condemning of him, contains the germ of all persecution: for whenever that is done, the only reason why active persecution does not follow, is that the power is lacking. Listen to Christ: “I am come a light into the world, that whosoever believeth on Me should not abide in darkness. And if any man hear My words, and believe not, I judge him not; for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world.” John 12:46, 47. This shows that saving and condemning are incompatible.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 341.4

    Jesus said to His disciples, “As My Father hath sent Me, even so send I you.” John 20:21. Therefore as Christ was sent into the world to save the world, and not to condemn it, it follows that His disciples have nothing to do with pronouncing condemnation. No matter how much in error a man may be, the church has no right to sit in judgment upon him, and to pronounce any manner of sentence.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 341.5

    Read the words of Christ: “Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged; and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.” Matthew 7:1, 2. To some this seems almost unjust, but there is a reason for it. Indeed, knowing that there is not unrighteousness with God, the reader might readily conclude the reason why men will be judged as they judge others; but the reason is thus plainly stated: “Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest; for wherein thou judgest another thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest dost the same things.” Romans 2:1. Surely that is a good reason.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 341.6

    “But,” we are apt to say, “I am certain that I do not do the things that I condemn in others.” In that case it is our word against God’s, for He says that we do. “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; who can know it?” Jeremiah 17:8. The only way we can know what is in our own hearts is by listening to the words of the Lord, who knows what is in man. “For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness.” Mark 7:21, 22. That is the nature of man. Wherever Christ is not, those evils exists, even though they be not apparent to the eye; and wherever there is a spirit of judging, there Christ is not, for He does not judge; therefore wherever there is a spirit of judging, there are all the evils which are common to man.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 341.7

    Read again: “Speak not evil one of another, brethren. He that speaketh evil of his brother, and judgeth his brother, speaketh evil of the law, and judgeth the law; but if thou judge the law, thou art not a doer of the law, but a judge. There is one lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy; who art thou that judgest another?” James 4:11, 12. Yes, Who art thou? There is one lawgiver, even God, and He alone is judge. “For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king; He will save us.” Isaiah 33:22. Therefore whoever presumes to judge another, puts himself in the place of God, and virtually claims to be God. How pertinent the question, “Who art thou that judgest another?” Who makest thou thyself?PTUK August 31, 1893, page 341.8

    Not only does the one who judges, or the professed church which judges, put itself in the place of God, but it exults itself above God, in that it anticipates His work. He has “appointed a day in the which He will judge the world in righteousness by that Man whom He hath ordained;” but man cannot wait His time, and so must pronounce judgment before the Lord does. Every human judgment will be set aside by the “judge of all the earth,” “for the lLrd seeth not as man seeth.”PTUK August 31, 1893, page 341.9

    There will come a time when judgment will be given to the saints of the Most High, but it will be when the time comes that the saints possess the kingdom. See Daniel 7:22. Then the saints will be allowed to sit in judgment not only on the world, but on angels as well. See 1 Corinthians 6:2, 3. “Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord, come who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts.” 1 Corinthians 4:5. “Who art thou that judgest another man’s servant? to his own master he standeth or falleth. Yea, he shall be holden up; for God is able to make him stand.” “But why dost thou judge thy brother? or why dost thou set at naught thy brother? for we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ.” “Let us not therefore judge one another any more.” Romans 14:4, 10, 13.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 341.10


    Not long since the attention of the whole religious world was turned to the trial of Professor Briggs for heresy. A regular court was convened, and a “Prosecuting Committee” was appointed. In opening the trial, the Moderator said:-PTUK August 31, 1893, page 342.1

    “I, as Moderator, do solemnly announce that this Assembly is about to pass to the consideration of business assigned for trial, and I do enjoin upon members to regard their high character as judges of the Court of Jesus Christ, and the solemn duty in which they are about to engage. We are now sitting in our judicial capacity.”PTUK August 31, 1893, page 342.2

    This was undoubtedly very solemn, but it was also very sad. It was said that Dr. Briggs had taught error, as he undoubtedly had, and it was no less sad that that great Assembly did not know that Jesus Christ is not yet sitting as judge, and that consequently He has no court. He says, “If any man hear My words, and believe not, I judge him not; for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world.” Jesus Christ gives every man the right to disbelieve if he wishes to, and no one may judge him till the last day, when the word that he has rejected will judge him. The court that presumes to sit in judgment upon him before that time, puts itself in the place of and above the Lord Jesus Christ.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 342.3

    What is the difference between a church court now and the Inquisition in the Middle Ages? None whatever, except in a lack of power to proceed to extreme measures. Church courts now cannot silence a man whom they have condemned for heresy, and consequently the whole thing is a farce. But when the church had the State to enforce its decrees, it could silence him by imprisonment or death. Now take the spirit of judging that is so rife in the churches to-day, and couple it with the very prevalent idea that the State has of right a voice in matters of religion, and it will be seen that the re-establishment of the Inquisition,-and that, too, by professed Protestants,-is not a remote possibility.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 342.4

    Wherever there is judging before the time appointed by the Lord, it is self that does the judging. Men think that it is zeal for God, but that is only because self is put in the place of God. It is mostly zeal for self. This is shown in the above instance by the fact that the main point of the prosecution was not that Dr. Briggs had taught contrary to the Bible, but that he had taught contrary to the Creed, and the “Confession of Faith,” which was made by men. True zeal for God never leads to a desire to condemn somebody for disobeying Him. God is able to avenge His own cause, and has not asked puny men to punish His enemies.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 342.5

    But it not be forgotten that the true church is not a law-making body, but a law-abiding body. Jesus Christ is the head of the body, because He is the head of every individual man in the body. The church cannot issue commands, nor set up standards. We often read about the church having “of its own authority,” ordained certain things, but that is usurped authority. So no one need ask, What does the church command? The church is composed of individual members of the body of Christ, and cannot command and condemn except as the individual members command and condemn, and that they are forbidden to do. Therefore what are known as “church courts” are indications that the church, being less longsuffering than God, is unable to wait His time, and is proceeding to take judgment into its own hands. In short, it is an indication that self rules instead of Christ.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 342.6

    “Binding and Loosing” The Present Truth 9, 22.


    E. J. Waggoner

    Christ says, “Verily I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” Matthew 18:18. Does this mean that God has pledged Himself to be bound by the decisions of men? Does it mean that whenever any body of men calling themselves the church of Christ, shall decide that certain ones are worthy of heaven, and that certain others are not, God will accept their judgment as His own? Hardly; for that would be to step down from the throne, and to exalt man above Himself. “The servant is not greater than his Lord; neither he that is sent greater than He that sent him.” Moreover one scripture cannot be used to offset another. Christ has expressly forbidden His followers to judge; and He has not contradicted Himself. Let us therefore study this question of binding and loosing.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 342.7

    When Christ declared that He had not come to judge the world, but to save the world, He also said, “He that rejecteth Me, and receiveth not My words, hath one that judgeth him; the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day.” John 12:48. The Lord also said to Moses: “I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put My words in His mouth; and He shall speak unto them all that I shall command Him. And it shall come to pass, that whosoever will not hearken unto My words which He shall speak in My name, I will require it of Him.” Deuteronomy 18:18, 19.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 342.8

    From this we see that the word of the Lord is of supreme authority. It is to be the judge in the last day. Therefore whatever is bound or loosed contrary to the word of the Lord, is not really bound or loosed, for it will be reversed in the judgment. Consequently we know that the binding and loosing that men do, that is to stand in heaven, is the binding or loosing that is done by the word of God through them. This is made more manifest by the words of the Lord to the young prophet Jeremiah.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 342.9

    Jeremiah said that he could not speak because he was only a child. “But the Lord said unto me, Say not, I am a child; for thou shalt go to all that I shall send thee, and whatsoever I command thee thou shalt speak.” “Then the Lord put forth His hand, and touched my mouth. And the Lord said unto me, Behold, I have put My words in thy mouth. See, I have this day set thee over the nations and over the kingdoms, to root out, and to pull down, and to destroy, and to throw down, to build.” Jeremiah 1:6-10.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 342.10

    How was it that Jeremiah was set to do all this? It was by having the words of God in his mouth. What then was the power that was to pull down and to build up? It was the word of the Lord. The words of the Lord are found in the Bible, for the Bible itself is the word of the Lord. Therefore only as men have it dwelling in them, so that they speak it, and have all their acts perfectly in harmony with it, can they bind or loose anything. Thus we see that what is bound or loosed on earth is bound or loosed in heaven, only by the word of the Lord which is settled for ever in heaven. Whatever is not in harmony with the word of God, is done against God, and therefore cannot stand.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 342.11

    But the word of the Lord is pure, and must not be adulterated with human opinions. Men must not put their interpretation upon the Scriptures, or draw inferences from it, and then say that they are following the word. The word must be taken just as it reads, without addition or alteration. God has said just what He means, and we are not warranted in acting “according to our best judgment,” when we do not understand it in any given case. We must wait until we do understand it. Moreover we must remember that it is not permitted to the church to make precedent. It is the church’s duty to obey, and not to command. Christ is “head over all things to the Church,” “that in all things He might have the pre-eminence.” Ephesians 1:22; Colossians 1:18.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 343.1

    The Holy Scriptures is sufficient to make a man “perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” 2 Timothy 3:17. Whatever the Lord wishes done He has placed in His word. Therefore if there ever should arise any case about which nothing can be found in the Bible, that would be sufficient evidence that nothing is to be done in that case.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 343.2

    “Keeping the Church Pure” The Present Truth 9, 22.


    E. J. Waggoner

    Ever since the days of the apostles, the great problem has been how to keep the church pure. The Inquisition was started for that purpose. True, the Inquisition itself was a grievous sin, yet there is no question but that the men who pushed it into operation were sincere in their zeal. Blind they were, because they took counsel of man instead of the word of God; but they were actuated by a sincere desire to rid the church of impurities. Although religious persecution always calls into action the lawless elements, and gives wicked men an opportunity to earn a reputation for great piety while giving loose rein to their depraved natures, it is a fact that since the days of Saul of Tarsus until now, the originators of such persecution have been men of outwardly blameless lives, who have been actuated by a most sincere, although mistaken, zeal for the welfare of the church.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 343.3

    The Bible does not leave us in darkness as to how the church is to be purified and kept pure. The following texts tell the whole story: “Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently; being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.” 1 Peter 1:22, 23.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 343.4

    “Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you.” John 15:3. “Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave Himself for it; that He might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, that He might present it to Himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.” Ephesians 5:25-27.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 343.5

    The word of God, then, is to purify the church and to keep it pure. Nothing else can. When all the members of the church let the word of Christ dwell in them richly in all wisdom (Colossians 3:10), and do nothing without the clearest warrant from the word of God, there will be no trouble. And no one is absolved from strictly following the word, because some others, or even the majority, are indifferent to its instructions. On the contrary there is then the more necessity for being loyal.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 343.6

    Let us now read the specific instruction which Christ has given for keeping the church pure. “Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, that in heaven their angels do always behold the face of My Father which is in heaven. For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost. 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.” Matthew 18:10-14. This is a picture of Christ, whose whole life is devoted to the salvation of the erring, for He gave His life for them. He came not to condemn the world, but to save the world. And He says, “As My Father hath sent Me, even so send I you.” Therefore the whole duty of those who profess to be Christ’s is to seek to save the lost, and especially those of the flock of God, who are wandering out of the way. See Galatians 6:10. And we are to seek to save them in His way; not by force, but by loving self-sacrifice.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 343.7

    “Restoring the Erring” The Present Truth 9, 22.


    E. J. Waggoner

    “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.” Matthew 18:15. Some ancient authorities omit “against thee,” in this text. That this course is to be pursued in all cases, and not simply where a personal offence has been committed, is shown by Galatians 6:1: “Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.”PTUK August 31, 1893, page 343.8

    Self is not to appear in the transaction. The man is not to go to his brother because he has been injured, but because his brother’s course is injuring himself. He is to go to save his brother, and not to seek reparation for himself.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 343.9

    Let it be remembered that as Christ “emptied Himself,” so His followers are to allow Him to take self away, so that He may appear. Whatever is different from Christ, is antichrist; Christ “pleased not Himself;” therefore to be jealous for one’s own rights and feelings, is to manifest the spirit of antichrist.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 343.10

    Is it any worse for a man to lie about us than it is for him to lie about our neighbour? Is it any worse for him to steal from us than it is for him to steal from our neighbour? Is it any worse for him to use any kind of violence toward us than it would be to do the same to any other men? Evidently not, yet self prompts the reply, “No; but it seems worse, because it hurts us worse.” Ah, but if self were gone, and Christ were in its place, it would not hurt us worse. “God commendeth His love towards us in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:9. When Christ was reviled, and slandered, and rudely treated, His only thought was of the injury which His tormentors were doing themselves. So if a man does wrong, we are to be moved with compassion for his infirmity; and our feelings are not to be affected at all by the fact that his enmity is directed to us personally. Therefore when the brother is in a fault, we are to go to him with a one thought of restoring him.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 343.11


    But who is to go? The answer is, “Ye which are spiritual.” All men are alike by nature. The sins which are committed by any person, are the outgrowth of the sinful nature that is common to all. Therefore when any sin comes to our notice, instead of producing disgust or contempt for the sinner, it should cause us to think, “That is a specimen of what I am by nature.” Therefore before we go to set that one right, we must be sure that we are spiritual, for if we are not we are partakers with him in his sin, and cannot do him any good.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 344.1

    Thus we see that the perception of a fault in another throws us right back on ourselves. If there is any feeling in us save such a burning love for the sinner as Christ Himself had, then we may know that we are not spiritual, and that our first duty is to seek the Lord for ourselves. Perhaps by the time we have become spiritual, the offending brother will also be spiritual; or we may find out that what we thought was sin in him was only the reflection of our own selves.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 344.2

    “But,” it is asked, “if I do not think that I am spiritual, ought I not to tell somebody else who is spiritual, the elders or a committee, for instance, so that he may be helped at once?” The Lord says, “Go and tell him.” Tell whom? Tell the one who is in error. You dare not tell anybody else, for you have no warrant in Scripture to do so.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 344.3

    “But perhaps he may go so far as to be irreclaimable before I get in a position to help him.” That is nothing to you; the Lord can take care of him without any of your unsanctified help. Everything that you do while not spiritual will only make the matter worse. Besides, if you fully realise that you are not spiritual, it need not take you an hour to become so; the Lord is not hard to find, since He is “not far from every one of us,” and He gives the Spirit freely to all who ask Him for it.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 344.4

    “But,” and it is astonishing how many exceptions we may find to the word of God, “if I know that some other person knows of the fault, may I not talk it over with him? Suppose everybody knows it; is it not then common property?” What does the word say? “How readest thou?” “Go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone.” That is definite, and should be sufficient. If all the members of the church were loyal to the word, and they would be if they were spiritual, and if one of the number committed a sin so that they all knew it, not one of them would speak to another about it, but each one would go to the offending one alone, and seek to reclaim him. And it would not be human effort, but it would be Christ Himself working and speaking through them for the salvation of a soul in danger.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 344.5

    See how wonderfully God has provided for the purification of His church. If one commits a sin, and all know it, then each one is driven at once to seek the Lord for himself, and no one may rest until he knows that Christ dwells in him. So that if men followed the word of God, a revival would be the first thing that would follow the commission of a grievous sin by any member. Is it not a simple yet most effective means? God forgive His people that it has been so little used.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 344.6


    “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 thee as a heathen man and a publican.” Matthew 18:17. We may not talk with them about the matter, but take them along to assist in restoring the offender. And all must go “in the spirit of meekness.” But if the word of God is followed it will not be often that matters will come to this step. The erring one will listen to the voice of Christ, if that is the only voice that he hears. Remember also, that once going to him, not to upbraid, but to pray with him and strengthen him, is not sufficient. The Lord says, “All day long I have stretched forth My hands unto a disobedient and gainsaying people.” Romans 10:21. The longsuffering of God bore with men one hundred and twenty years in the days of Noah. 1 Peter 3:20. Christ bears long with us, and does not upbraid us, and we ought to learn from Him how to be patient with the erring.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 344.7

    Suppose a case where all know of the sin, yet all are so loyal to the word that no one will speak of it to any but to the sinner. If there are forty who know of it, and, after they have sought the Lord, each one goes alone to labour for the one in fault, as Christ would, who can imagine the effect upon his heart? It would be melted unless it had become exceedingly hard.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 344.8

    Such cases there may be. “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 thee as a heathen man and a publican.” Matthew 18:17. One or several have been to him alone. Then three or four have gone together. And how have they gone? “In the spirit of meekness.” Whom have they represented? None but Christ. Whose words have been spoken? Only the words of the Lord. What has been the sole object? To restore the offender to Christ. As God was in Christ reconciling the world unto Himself, so Christ has been in His servants reconciling the sinner to Himself. “As though God did beseech you by us; we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God.” 2 Corinthians 5:20.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 344.9

    Then how is it when it comes before the church? Just the same. One alone tried to reclaim the sinner. Then several together laboured for Him. And now the whole body is to seek to save him, only as Christ would. It is impossible that he should be brought before the church for trial, as before a court, because a trial always implies a judge and a possible condemnation. But the church is for the purpose of representing Christ to the world, and God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world. Christ refused to judge when He was on earth, and is not yet sitting in judgment; therefore the church cannot sit as a court without accusing the Lord of neglect of duty.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 344.10

    All the church, then,-the body of Christ, “the fulness of Him that filleth all in all,”-is aroused for the restoration of one diseased member. It is as though God Himself did beseech the erring one, for He does do it through His church. He who resists that appeal is not resisting men but God, because self has not appeared; only the word of God has spoken all the way through. What then? “But if he neglects to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican.” All has been done that can be done, and now “let him be.” The church has cleared itself from all complicity with the sin, and is pure, because their obstinate one in rejecting the word of the Lord, has rejected the Lord Himself, and consequently is no longer a member of His body. Yet he is not to be treated as an enemy, for the heathen and the publicans are to be loved and laboured for.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 344.11

    Now we can see how it is that whatever shall be bound or loosed on earth shall likewise be bound or loosed in heaven. It is not because heaven has pledged itself to abide by every decision of man, but because the word that is settled in heaven, and which alone binds and loses, has been allowed free course on earth. Other points in this same line will be noticed in other articles. But studying the Divine model, we know how to detect and avoid error. If we know what constitutes the true church of Christ, and how it acts, we shall know the characteristics of apostasy.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 344.12

    “God Is a Shield” The Present Truth 9, 22.


    E. J. Waggoner

    In the story of John G. Paton’s “Thirty Years Among the South Sea Cannibals,” are numerous instances of the power of the gospel to “calm the savage breast to peace,” and of the zeal which leads the converted heathen to tell the story of Christ and His salvation to others who had not heard the gracious news. Mr. Paton gives the following account of one such instance”-PTUK August 31, 1893, page 346.1

    “In heathendom every true convert becomes at once a missionary. The changed life, shining out amid the surrounding darkness, is a gospel in largest capitals which all can read. Our Islanders, especially, having little to engage or otherwise distract attention, become intense and devoted workers for the Lord Jesus, if once the Divine passion for souls stirs within them.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 346.2

    “A heathen has been all his days groping after peace of soul in dark superstition and degrading rites. You pour into his soul the light of revelation. He learns that God is love, that God sent His Son to die for him, and that he is the heir of life eternal in and through Jesus Christ. By the blessed enlightenment of the Spirit of the Lord he believes all this. He passes into a third heaven of joy, and he burns to tell every one of this glad tidings. Others see the change in his disposition, in his character, in his whole life and actions; and amid such surroundings, every convert is a burning and a shining light. Even whole populations are thus brought into the outer court of the temple; and islands, still heathen and cannibal, are positively eager for the missionary to live amongst them, and would guard his life and property now in complete security, where a very few years ago everything would have been instantly sacrificed on touching their shores? They are not Christianised, neither are they civilised, and the light has been kindled all around them, and though still only shining afar, they cannot but rejoice in its beams.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 346.3

    “But even where the path is not so smooth, nor any welcome awaiting them, native converts show amazing zeal. For instance, one of our chiefs, full of the Christ-kindled desire to seek and to save, sent a message to an island chief, that he and four attendants would come on Sabbath and tell them the gospel of Jehovah God. The reply came back sternly forbidding their visit, and threatening with death any Christian that approached their village. Our chief sent in response a loving message, telling them that Jehovah had taught the Christians to return good for evil, and that they would come unarmed to tell the story of how the Son of God came into the world and died in order to bless and save His enemies. The heathen chief sent back a stern and prompt reply once more, ‘If you come, you will be killed.’PTUK August 31, 1893, page 346.4

    “On Sabbath morning, the Christian chief and his four companions were met outside the village by the heathen chief, who implored and threatened them once more. But the former said, ‘We come to you without weapons of war! We come only to tell you about Jesus. We believe that He will protect us to-day.’PTUK August 31, 1893, page 346.5

    “As they steadily pressed forward towards the village, spears began to be thrown at them. Some they evaded, being all except one most dextrous warriors; and others they literally received with their bare hands, striking them and turning them aside in an incredible manner. The heathen, apparently thunderstruck at these men thus approaching them without weapons of war, and not even flinging back their own spears which they had turned aside, desisted from mere surprise, after having thrown what the old chief called ‘a shower of spears.’ Our Christian chief called out, as he and his companions drew up in the midst of them on the village public ground:PTUK August 31, 1893, page 346.6

    “‘Jehovah thus protects us. He has given us all your spears! Once we would have thrown them back at you and killed you. But now we come not to fight, but to tell you about Jesus. He has changed our dark hearts. He asks you now to lay down all these your other weapons of war, and to hear what we can tell you about the love of God, our great Father, the only living God.’PTUK August 31, 1893, page 346.7

    “The heathen were perfectly over-awed. They manifestly looked upon these Christians as protected by some Invisible One! They listened for the first time to the story of the Gospel and of the cross. We lived to see that chief and all his tribe sitting; in the school of Christ. And there is perhaps not an island in these Southern Seas, amongst all those won for Christ, where similar acts of heroism on the part of converts cannot be recited by every missionary to the honour of our poor natives and to the glory of their Saviour.”PTUK August 31, 1893, page 346.8

    “Following Copy” The Present Truth 9, 22.


    E. J. Waggoner

    When you first started to school, and before you had learned to write a word, suppose the master had come to you with paper and pencil and had said, “Take this paper and pencil and write just as I do,” and then had left you to do it alone, do you think you could have done it?PTUK August 31, 1893, page 347.1

    “Oh course not,” you say, “how could I write when I could not even hold the pencil right? and how could I write as he did when I had never so much as seen his writing?”PTUK August 31, 1893, page 347.2

    But when he kindly set you a copy, and thus showed you some of his writing, and when he perhaps placed the pencil in your fingers and took your little hand in his and moved it back and forth just where it should go, were you not delighted to see how nearly you could write like the master? And yet really you were not writing at all, but the master was writing with your hand.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 347.3

    Now no matter how old you are, you cannot by yourself act right or talk right or think right, any more than you could write correctly when you were a little child. You cannot guide your hands and feet and tongue and mind right any more than you could then guide your pencil right. And yet is not knowing how to do right of far more importance than knowing how to write?PTUK August 31, 1893, page 347.4

    The heavenly Master alone knows how to do good. And yet, like the schoolmaster, He says to you, “Do as I do.” I do not mean that He asks you to write as He does, but He asks you to act as He does and think as He does and speak as He does, for He says, “Be ye holy; for I am holy,” that is, “Be ye pure and good, and do right in everything; for I am pure and good and do right in everything.”PTUK August 31, 1893, page 347.5

    “But,” you say, “I have tried to be good and I cannot.”PTUK August 31, 1893, page 347.6

    Of course not, for you have doubtless tried to do it by yourself and without any copy.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 347.7

    Your heavenly Master does not expect you to work all alone or without a copy any more than your earthly master does. Indeed, He says, “Without Me ye can do nothing.” You must be as willing to allow Him to use your hands and feet and tongue and eyes and mind, as you were to allow your schoolmaster to use your hand in following his copy. This you will need to do as long as you live, for you can never grow old enough or wise enough to do right alone.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 347.8

    The heavenly Master knows all things. He therefore knows that you must have a copy of His work so that you can see just how He does. If you should spend your life in copying someone else, He knows that your labour would all be in vain, for there is no one else just right,-no, not one.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 347.9

    The Master therefore in His great love has at infinite cost and suffering provided for you a heavenly and perfect copy of His perfect life. It is the most marvellous copy that this earth has ever seen. It lives, and loves, and feels, and has power to come into your heart and use your hands and feet and eyes and mind, in tracing “each line and turn and curve of the Master’s life.” But it will not do this unless you are willing to give up your way and let it use you.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 347.10

    This heavenly Copy is one that you can never outgrow. It is just right for you when you are a little child, when you are a youth, and when you are grown up. It is just as good for you to follow the last part of your life as it is for you to follow the first part of your life. It is just as good for the poor man as it is for the rich man, just as good for the servant as for the king. Purity, meekness, obedience, perfect sinlessness is found in every part of it, for this wonderful, marvellous, glorious copy is the life of Jesus Christ,-the Creator of the heavens and the earth, the Majesty of heaven, the babe in Bethlehem’s manger, the obedient child of Nazareth, the Son on the banks of Jordan in whom the Father was well pleased, the tempted but victorious One in the wilderness, the man of poverty and acquainted with grief, the Friend of publicans and sinners and little children, the Comforter, Healer, Lifegiver, and Deliverer; the One who, when He was reviled, reviled not again; when He suffered, He threatened not; who His own self bare our sins in His own body on the tree, that we might be dead to sins and live unto righteousness, He who suffered for us, leaving us an example that ye should follow in His steps, Jesus Christ, through whom God can “make you perfect in every good work to do His will, working in you that which is well-pleasing in His sight.”PTUK August 31, 1893, page 347.11

    Dear child, is this the copy you are following? If not, you will certainly come short of heaven’s prize at last. You can find the whole picture of His life in your Bible, how He talked and how He acted when at home, in company, and on the streets; how He treated His friends and His enemies, and everything else that you need to know about Him. And the wonder of it all is that He will so cause you to follow Copy, if you will allow Him to use you, that you may become perfect even as the Father in heaven is perfect. Are you willing to unselfishly step where He stepped, and love as He loved, and suffer with Him? If so, the promise is that ye shall also reign with Him.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 347.12

    Oh, do not grieve and dishonour the Master by choosing some imperfect copy when he has at such cost provided His only Son.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 347.13

    “Light and Darkness” The Present Truth 9, 22.


    E. J. Waggoner

    “The path of the just is as the shining light, ... The way of the wicked is as darkness.Proverbs 4:18, 19.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.1

    One of the most pleasant things in the world is light. Do you remember who made it, and how it was made? What a cold, lifeless, gloomy place this earth would be without the beautiful light. ‘Tis true we need the cool, quiet night in which to rest, but how gladly everything welcomes the morning light! At the first peep of day, the little birds pour out their songs of praise. And as the trees and grass and flowers are touched by the warm rays, they shake out there dewy leaves and seem to say, “Good morning, merry sunshine! We are so glad that you have come again.” Men go forth to their work with gladness, and baby hands reaching out with joy to catch and kiss the pretty sunbeam that rests a moment on the floor. Ah, yes, ‘tis true, we love the light better than the darkness. And sometimes we almost wish that it would never go away.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.2

    Although day and night will continue to come and go as long as this earth remains, yet our whole life will be as pleasant as the shining light if we have Jesus with us. He says, “I am the light of the world; he that followeth Me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.” John 8:12. We need the sunlight, but we need Jesus, the Sun of Righteousness, more.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.3

    But how can we have Him with us? Jesus by His Holy Spirit dwells in His word, therefore by loving His holy letter and letting its words enter into our hearts we let Jesus into our hearts, and He will then abide with us, and His life will be our light. Then no matter if we are all alone in the dark, away from every earthly light, we are safe, and may be happy.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.4

    When we disobey God or our parents, and are cross and angry with our brothers, sisters, or friends, and say naughty words, and lie, or steal, Jesus looks grieved and sad, for that shows that we do not love Him. He cannot stay with us, and we feel unhappy and everything seems dark and unpleasant, no matter how bright the sun may be shining. Wickedness always brings a feeling of darkness and unhappiness, because Jesus leaves us. Without Him we make mistakes and go into wrong ways as surely as without light we stumble and go into broad paths. So the Bible says that “the way of the wicked is as darkness.”PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.5

    Dear child, in which road are you walking? Are you cross, and selfish, and disobedient? If so, you are walking in the way of darkness. Jesus loves you and wants you to be saved, but He knows that if you keep on in this way you will finally be lost. He therefore calls you to come out of the way of the wicked into the path of the just (righteous), to come out of the darkness of sin into the light of Jesus’ own righteousness. That you may not make mistakes and go wrong, He places in your hand the Bible lamp. “Take it,” He says, “Let its words enter into your hearts, and do as it says, and you will find the right way. It will lead you to Me, and I am the light of the world.” Then your path will be as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day. At that time Jesus will come and take you to live with Him in His beautiful home, where it is always light.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.6

    Here are some little verses for you to learn:-PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.7

    “God is always near me
    Hearing what I say;
    Knowing all my tho’ts and deeds,
    All my work and play.
    PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.8

    “God is always near me,
    In the darkest night
    He can see me just the same
    As by midday light.
    PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.9

    “God is always near me,
    Though so young and small;
    Not a look or word or thought
    But God knows it all.”
    PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.10

    1. Of what use are your eyes?PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.11

    2. Suppose that this earth to-day were just as it was at first, what good would your eyes do you?PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.12

    3. Who made the light?PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.13

    4. When?PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.14

    5. How?PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.15

    6. “And the evening and the morning were-?PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.16

    7. When does every day begin?PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.17

    8. For what is the light good?—It shows us the beautiful things that God has made; we can seek to work and play; it makes us warm and healthy; it gives colour to the grass and flowers and fruits; it makes things grow and ripen. Everybody and everything would become ill and die if there were no light.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.18

    9. Did you ever see any grass or plants or people who lived in the dark?PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.19

    10. How did they look?PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.20

    11. Then do you think that we ought to keep our blinds shut and our shades down so that the light can’t get through our windows? Why not?PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.21

    12. Of what use is the night?PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.22

    13. Can you see the night when it is very dark?PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.23

    14. Who can see just as well in the night as in the day? Psalm 139:11, 12.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.24

    15. Can He not watch over us, then, and take care of us in the dark just as well as in the light?PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.25

    16. To whom do both the day and night belong?—God. Psalm 71:5-16.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.26

    17. Then have we any right to use them in a way that will not please Him?PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.27

    18. Which do you like better, light or darkness?PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.28

    19. How may your path all the time be like the shining light?PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.29

    20. If you continue to live without Jesus, how will it be?PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.30

    21. How much do you need Jesus?—More than you need sunshine.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.31

    22. How can you find Him?—By following the wonderful Bible lamp.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.32

    “The heart that will open
    To Jesus the Sun
    May dwell in the sunlight
    Till life’s day is done.”
    PTUK August 31, 1893, page 349.33

    “Walk in the Light” The Present Truth 9, 22.


    E. J. Waggoner

    There are only two ways through this world, and you, my child, are in one of them.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 350.1

    Satan’s way leads to unhappiness and eternal death, but the way of Jesus leads to happiness and eternal life.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 350.2

    Satan’s way is like darkness because it is so full of wickedness and sin that those who walk therein cannot see where they are going.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 350.3

    The Lord’s way is like the shining light because there is no sin to blind, and it is so full of the perfect life of Jesus that all who walk therein can see just where they should go and what they should do. They have Jesus the perfect copy to follow, and although they cannot imitate this copy themselves, they can easily do it when they allow the Master to use their hands and feet and eyes and tongues and minds. But there are but few who are willing to give up their own way and allow Him to do this, so there are but few who are walking in the straight and narrow way of Jesus.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 350.4

    Satan’s way is broad and those who walk in that way are allowed to do all the wickedness that they please; therefore many walk therein. They have no perfect copy to follow, but just copy Satan or one another, so you can imagine how they get farther and farther from the right way and the perfect copy.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 350.5

    There are Bibles in both ways, but no light comes out of most of those in Satan’s way because sometimes they are not even opened, and are allowed to lie on the shelf covered with dust and spiderwebs, and even many of those that are opened are not loved and received as God’s word, but are read as any common book. ‘Tis true that now and then a darkened soul takes up the Bible and opens it and receives it as God’s words to him, and believes it with his whole heart. When this occurs, of course a flood of light falls upon his way, and lo, he is no longer in the dark way, but is led out of darkness into the marvellous light of Jesus.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 350.6

    Those who are walking in the light every day are every day studying their Bibles, like the boy in our picture, and are daily receiving it into their hearts and loving and obeying it. They thus have Jesus with them every day and do not walk in the darkness of sin.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 350.7

    But sad to say, some of those who are in the way of light get tired of receiving God’s word every day, and neglect to study and take it into their hearts, and thus neglect to receive Jesus the Light. A change takes place immediately. The light begins to grow dim, Satan’s throws some of the clouds of sin before their eyes, and ere long their feet turn out of the right way and go stumbling along in the sin-darkened road of Satan.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 350.8

    It is God’s word received that brings the light, it is God’s word received daily that keeps the light. God’s word is therefore called a lamp to our feet and a light unto our path. If you receive it daily and obey it, you will be walking in the light. Oh, will you do it?PTUK August 31, 1893, page 350.9

    There are two ways and two leaders. You may take your choice, but you must walk in one of the two ways. Jesus died that you might have a path of light to walk in. Which leader do you choose? the prince of darkness or the Prince of Light?PTUK August 31, 1893, page 350.10

    “Items of Interest” The Present Truth 9, 22.


    E. J. Waggoner

    -Yellow fever is reported at Tampa, Florida, U.S.A.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.1

    -Incendiarism prevails to an alarming extent in Spain.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.2

    -Fresh raids by the Matabele are reported from Mashonaland.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.3

    -The Servian Government is reported to be in danger of bankruptcy.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.4

    -The village of Costacomelioo, in Italy, has been destroyed by fire.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.5

    -A repetition of last year’s flood is feared at the village of St. Gorvais, France.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.6

    -The elections in France, have resulted in a decisive victory for the Republicans.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.7

    -The socialists have occasioned several riots at Prague, and order is preserved by the police.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.8

    -Government statistics show that deaths from over-indulgence in alcohol are on the increase in Italy.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.9

    —Serious labour riots have occurred near Vienna, between the police and unemployed workmen.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.10

    -Disastrous floods prevail at Tipperiah, India, and it is feared that an epidemic will follow their subsidence.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.11

    -Accidents among Alpine tourists have been very frequent of late, and several persons have lost their lives.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.12

    -Twenty-five lives are reported to have been lost by an overflow of the Vistula at the town of Kasmierz, Poland.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.13

    -Corporal punishment has been introduced into the Egyptian prisons. The maximum number of lashes to be given is thirty-six.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.14

    -A boating accident, by which it is said ten lives were lost, occurred near Sutton Bridge, Lincolnshire. One woman was saved.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.15

    -It is computed that 300,000 persons, or nearly one-fifth of the entire population, have emigrated from Alsace-Lorraine within 20 years.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.16

    -A cyclone in New Jersey, U.S.A., has laid waste the finest peach orchards in the Slate, besides causing much other damage to property.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.17

    -Much anxiety is felt at Montreal over the non-appearance of the steamship Sarnia, of the Dominion Line, which is now nearly a month overdue.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.18

    -Large numbers of Icelanders are emigrating to Manitoba, and the Danish government is making strenuous but unsuccessful efforts to stop the exodus.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.19

    -Roman Catholics at Moyrus, Connemara, Ireland, have been recently stirred up against the Protestants, and acts of religious persecution are now frequent.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.20

    -The police of Rome are exercising great vigilance to guard against anarchists, several of whom have been arrested with manifestoes in their possession.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.21

    -Letters received in Vienna from Constantinople state that the condition of the Armenians in Turkey is growing worse, both in the Ottoman capital and in the provinces.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.22

    -Three persons have died in London recently under circumstances which gave rise to a suspicion of Asiatic cholera. Hull also reports two deaths from the Asiatic plague.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.23

    -Bombay opium merchants have addressed a notice to the Viceroy of India complaining that on account of the recent action of the Indian Government on the silver question, the opium trade of the country is threatened with utter ruin. We trust their fears are not groundless.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.24

    -Dispatch from the scene of the flood in Upper Hungary report a most distressing condition of affairs. Whole villages are under water, and many persons have been drowned.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.25

    -Attempts have been trade to set fire to five churches at Belknap, N.H. Placards have been pasted up on dead walls and fences, threatening the destruction of every church in the town.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.26

    -A military journal published at Vienna states that Austria and Italy will be called upon to increase their military forces, in consequence of an increase in the armies of Russia and France.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.27

    -It is reported at Victoria, B.C., that Yokohama will be made the centre of the seal fishing industry in the future, although the vessels engaged in it will continue to fly the British flag.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.28

    -The great coal strike still continues, but there are signs of a break among the miners, many of whom are in great distress, and the prospect is that a large number will return to work at an early date.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.29

    -The largest family in the world is said to be that of the King of Siam. He has two official wives, eighty-eight wives of minor order, and seventy-two children. The King has fifty brother-and sisters.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.30

    -The new Cunard steamer Lucania, on her voyage to the Mersey round the West Coast of Ireland, attained a speed of 2.51/2 statute miles an hour without being pressed at all. She will be ready for her first voyage early in September.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.31

    -Nova Scotia has been visited by a most destructive hurricane, the severest effects of which were felt at Halifax. A steamer and a barge foundered in the storm, causing twenty-four deaths, and the damage to shipping was very great.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.32

    -The Governor of Corrientes, in Argentina, has fled to Paraguay with 1,000 followers. The insurgents have appointed a Provincial Government to conduct affairs until the arrival of the Federal arbitrator, whom the National Government has decided to dispatch.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.33

    -As a consequence of the killing of Italians by the French in the Aigues-Mortes riot, an anti-French demonstration occurred in Rome, Aug. 20, where the French embassy was attacked, and similar demonstrations took place at Naples and other principal Italian cities.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.34

    -The annual Roman Catholic pilgrimages to Lourdes have begun, and crowds of deluded unfortunates have for several days thronged the Orleans Railway Station, waiting for the departure of special trains to convey them to the place where they hope to become cured of their misfortunes.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.35

    -The cholera continues to spread rapidly in Galicia, and is steadily increasing in Russia. Arrangements have been made at St. Petersburg to supply travellers with boiled water. Two cases of the disease are under treatment at Rotterdam. Berlin doctors state that there will be no epidemic in that city.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.36

    -Severe fighting, with the loss of several lives, is reported from the town of Gilberton, Penn. U.S.A., between the citizens and militia who were guarding the property of the Schuylkill Traction Company, which the citizens were destroying on account of the failure of the Company to comply with a town ordinance.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.37

    -Stagnation in trade is becoming very serious in America. Thirty-three per cent. of the cotton mills in the country are idle, while the percentage of the machinery stopped is 24. Of the knitting mills from which news has been received, 53 per cent. are stopped either completely or in part while 47 per cent. of the machinery is idle.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.38

    -News comes from Moosh, in Armenia, that the whole population of the village of Hamzasheikh-about thirty families-have embraced Islamism in the hope of escaping Turkish cruelty and oppression. The Turkish Government, it is also, stated, has “encouraged them with many gifts.” Seventy families in the village of Yonjaloo, near Alashgerd, have followed their example.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.39

    -Long Island City, New York, contains a Baptist church in which mass is performed ever Sunday. Recently St. Mary’s Roman Catholic church was burned down, whereupon the Baptists tendered to the Roman Catholics the free use of their handsome church till the latter could rebuild. So Father McGuire, the Catholic priest celebrates mass on Sunday morning to his congregation, and when he has finished, the Baptists commence their service.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.40

    “Back Page” The Present Truth 9, 22.


    E. J. Waggoner

    The Catholic Times cites as an evidence of “the prodigious influence which the Church exercises upon humanity,” the fact that 7,000 telegrams, from all parts of the world, were sent to the Pope, congratulating him upon the attainment of his episcopal jubilee.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.41

    The following very humble letter from the president of United States to Cardinal Gibbons, is an indication of the influence which the Pope has among nations. It was dated June 9:-PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.42

    “Pray be pleased to permit me to send, through the medium of your Eminence, to his Holiness Leo XIII. my sincere congratulations on the occasion of his Episcopal Golden Jubilee. The pleasure which accompanies this expression of my congratulations, is much enhanced by the recollection I have of the lively interest which his Holiness has always exhibited in the prosperity of the United States, as well as his great admiration for our political institutions. I rejoice to think that these sentiments are the natural outcome of the solicitude which the Holy Father cherishes for the well-being and happiness of the masses of mankind, and the special sympathy with which he regards every attempt made to make the human individuality respected and favour the moral and social betterment of the toilers. The kindness with which his Holiness has lately accepted a copy of the Constitution of the United States, induces me to make known to you that, if it would not be presuming too much, it would be extremely agreeable to me to place in his hands a book containing the official papers and documents which I have written during my previous administration.-Very sincerely yours,PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.43


    The letter is stamped with the obsequiousness of a servant to his master. No wonder that the Pope regards himself as superior to all kings and potentates, when they themselves act as though he were.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.44

    “Great Fire in Chicago”; “The Cyclone in America’; “The Industrial Crisis and England”; “The Cholera in Europe”; “Great Flood and Poland”; “The Floods and India”; “The Socialist Riots”; “The Uprising in Argentine”; etc., etc.,-such are the heading’s which meet the eye as one glances over the pages of the daily newspaper of to-day. And all this after civilisation has advanced to the zenith of its splendour, and done its utmost to bring in that ideal state where peace and prosperity, with “Liberty, Fraternity, and Equality,” shall be the heritage of all mankind. Is it not time for every Christian to pray earnestly, “Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven”? and not only to pray, but to labour earnestly to hasten on the glorious day of the appearing of earth’s Redeemer?PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.45

    The following from the Alliance News will be found quite as applicable to those who remain at home, or who travel in other places, as to those who visit Paris. It will be a good thing to remember, also, when rumours of cholera are driving timid people to alcoholic drinks, which only increase the liability to the disease.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.46

    “Throughgoing,” in a letter to the Editor, says, “Week-kneed teetotallers who when visiting Paris are frightened by Seine water into drinking wine will now have no justification for their feeble faith.” The recent investigations of M. Girard, chief of the Paris Municipal Laboratory, undertaken with the object of making it safe to drink water of questionable quantity, here again shown that acids give the coup de grace to microbes. “Citric acid,” he finds, “is the most powerful of all; one gramme added to a quart of water will destroy all the microbes that are in it.” Now, as the juice of half an average-sized lemon contains a gramme of citric acid, and as few people dilute that quantity with so much as a quart of water, it follows that natural lemonade prepared in the normal way by thoroughly mixing lemon juice with water must be fatal to the organisms which the water contains.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.47

    “If I regard iniquity in my heart; the Lord will not hear me.” Psalm 66:18. Does that mean that God will not hear the prayer of a sinner? Must a man be a doer of the law of God before God will listen to him? Certainly not. He justifies-makes righteous-the ungodly. The publican who prayed, “God be merciful to me, a sinner,” was justified. But if a man regards iniquity in his heart, while praying with his lips,-if while seemingly praying to God for righteousness, he in his heart clings to sin,-of course God will not hear him, because he does not really ask for anything. He seems to ask for the will of God to be done, because he says, “in the name of Jesus;” but the will of God is to free man from sin, and that the man does not wish done in his case. But “this is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners” (1 Timothy 1:15); and He says, “Him that cometh to Me I will in no wise cast out” (John 6:37), and, “If ye shall ask anything in My name, I will do it.” John 14:14.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.48

    “Be ye angry, and sin not.” Ephesians 4:26. This gives us permission to be angry, provided we do not sin. Anger that is not sin must be allowable, for nothing is forbidden except sin. “But how can we be angry without sinning?” is the question. The writer must confess that he does not know. It is doubtful if anybody knows. What then shall we do? It is evident that we must not run any risks, for sin is terrible thing. The only course for us to pursue, therefore, is to refrain from getting angry, until we are sure that we know how to be angry without sin. He who does this, will learn the meaning of the text as soon as it is necessary.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.49

    “Notions About God” The Present Truth 9, 22.


    E. J. Waggoner

    The editor of a religious magazine announces that he has in mind several series of articles, one of which will be an “attempt to recast our notions of the Deity in the light of modern research.” That was what the Egyptians, the Assyrians, the Greeks, and the Romans did. Not satisfied with God’s own revelation of Himself, they recast their notions of Him in the “light” of what was then “modern research.” The result was heathenism. “Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things.” Romans 1:22, 23.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.50

    “The world by wisdom knew not God.” 1 Corinthians 1:21. This has always been the case, and always will be; for “no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and He to whomsoever the Son will reveal Him.” Matthew 11:27. God is as great as His thoughts; and He says to us: “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55:9. Therefore it must always be the case that the highest conceptions that man forms of God, are infinitely below the reality.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.51

    So we must conclude that man has no business whatever to have any “notions” about God, since that is but to make a God of his own. He who would worship God “in spirit and in truth,” which is the only way that God can be worshipped, must avoid making limits for Him. He must simply take God’s own statements of Himself, and, realising that all God’s words are infinite in depth, must allow them eternally to expand before his mind, not in “the light of modern research,” but in the light of the Holy Spirit.PTUK August 31, 1893, page 352.52

    Larger font
    Smaller font