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    November 26, 1885

    “Pagan and Papal Rome” The Signs of the Times, 11, 45.

    E. J. Waggoner

    The vision of the eighth chapter of Daniel begins with the supremacy of Medo-Persian dominion, B.C. 538, and covers the remaining portion of the world’s history till the close of time. The 25th verse says that the power represented by the little horn, Rome, “shall the broken without hand.” This evidently refers to the same thing that is mentioned in Daniel 2:34, 44, 45, where the stone cut out without hands is represented as smiting the image on the feet and breaking up the entire image-all the kingdoms of earth-in pieces.SITI November 26, 1885, page 710.1

    Paganism was the prevailing religion during the Medo-Persian and Grecian rule, during the first portion of the Roman Empire. In the vision of the second chapter of Daniel there is no distinction made between pagan Rome and Rome papal, but in every other prophecy the distinction is clearly marked. In the seventh chapter, pagan Rome is represented by the “dreadful and terrible” beast with teeth of iron and nails of brass. Papal Rome is represented by the “little horn” which came out from this beast. In reality, the beast, after the rise of the little horn, is papal Rome, i.e., Rome under the popes.SITI November 26, 1885, page 710.2

    In the 12th and 13th of Revelation the Roman power is brought to view. It is not difficult to identify the red dragon with seven heads and ten horns. It is represented as standing ready to devour a certain child as soon as it was born. This child we know is Jesus, from the fact that he is to “rule all nations with a rod of iron” (verse 5, compared Psalm 2:7-9), and he was “caught up to his throne.” These particulars will apply to no one but Jesus. And Rome, through Herod as its representative, stood ready to slay Jesus when he was born. See Matthew 2. The dragon, represents Rome. The question is, Does it represent the whole of Rome, or only a part? This can be answered when we have identified the next beast.SITI November 26, 1885, page 710.3

    “And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy. And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion; and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority.... And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months. And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven. And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them; and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations.”SITI November 26, 1885, page 710.4

    Compare this description with what we are already familiar in Daniel 7, and there will be no difficulty in deciding that it also represents Rome. What! two symbols in succession representing the same thing? The answer must be that they represent two phases of Rome. Now we know that Rome in the time of Christ was pagan; therefore this second phase, represented by the leopard beast, must be papal Rome. Notice its blasphemous words, and its work of persecuting saints, and compare with the description of the little horn of Daniel 7. Notice also a time during which it was to have power to continue-“forty and two months.” This, at thirty days to the month, is just 1260 days (as prophetic symbols, years), which we have already learned was the period of papal supremacy. Here, then, as in the seventh of Daniel, the prophecy marks a change from pagan to papal Rome.SITI November 26, 1885, page 710.5

    Once more we turn to the Roman power as brought to view in the eighth of Daniel. The little horn that waxed “exceeding great,” we have already seen to be Rome. There is no possibility of its representing any other power. But it is to be “broken without hand,” which shows that the little-horn power covers the whole of Roman history, reaching even to the coming of the Lord. This being the case, it is evident that here also we must have the two phases of Rome,-pagan and papal. How are these two phases indicated? First, we repeat that the word “sacrifice” which occurs in verses 11, 12, and 13, is not found in the original, and there is nothing in the text that gives any idea of sacrifice. In the face of this, the Revision Committee, as if to get as far as possible from the true meaning of the passage, have placed “burnt-offering” in the Revised Version, in the place of “sacrifice.” This is simply making a bad matter worse. They could have used the word “persecution,” or “prophesying,” or “dreaming,” with just as much reason. Some one will ask, If there is no word in the original where the translators have placed “sacrifice,” why did they place any word there at all? It would have been better if they had not, for then no one would have been misled. Try it in verse 13: “Then I heard one saint speaking, and another saint said unto that certain saint, How long shall be the vision concerning the daily and the transgression of desolation, to give both the sanctuary and the host to be trodden underfoot?” A very slight examination will convince anyone that the only word that can be properly supplied after “daily,” is ‘desolation;’ thus, “How long shall be the vision concerning the daily desolation and the transgression of desolations?” By supplying a word that is already in the text (and we have no right to go outside of the text for a word), we make harmony, and get rid of the real sense of the passage.SITI November 26, 1885, page 710.6

    Rome, then, is here termed to a desolating power. Examine Matthew 24:15, 16, and Luke 20:21, 22, and you will find the Roman armies spoken of as the “abomination of desolation.” And this term, “desolation,” is a very fit one to apply to a power that shall “break in pieces and bruise,” and “shall devour the whole earth, and shall tread it down, and break it in pieces.” Then we have two forms of desolation, at the “daily” and the “transgression.” Rome in its pagan form was well indicated by the term “daily,” or “continual,” because paganism had been the main religion of the world from almost the beginning. A few people worshiped the true God; but these were so very few that it might well be said that paganism have always been the religion of the world. But under the Roman dominion a change was to take place. Paganism in the civilized world was to receive its death blow, and a form of worship professedly Christian was to take its place; yet this new form of religion was to be of such a character, as compared with paganism, that it was called the “transgression.” It is doubtful if the abomination of paganism for four thousand years equaled the crimes perpetrated by papal Rome in its twelve centuries of supreme power.SITI November 26, 1885, page 710.7

    This same change is set forth by Paul in the second chapter of 2 Thessalonians. He told the Thessalonians brethren that the day of the Lord could not come until there had come an apostasy, and the “man of sin” had been revealed, and had accomplished his work of blasphemy and opposition to God and history. Said he, “Remember ye not that when I was yet with you, I told you these things?” That it is, when he was in Thessalonica he preached to them from the book of Daniel concerning the rise of the papacy. “And now he know what withholdeth that he the man of sin might be revealed in his time.” That is, you know what now hinders the setting up of the papacy; it is paganism, which still has a controlling influence in the government. “For the mystery of the iniquity doth already work; only he who now letteth hindereth will let hinder, until he be taken out of the way. And then shall that Wicked be revealed.” Verses 7, 8. The apostasy had begun in Paul’s day. “Grievous wolves” had already begun to devour the flock, and men speaking perverse things had drawn many away. This spirit of the papacy-“the mystery of the iniquity”-was already existing; but it could not fully develop itself until paganism-the hindering power-should be “taken of the way,” and then “that Wicked” should stand forth undisguised.SITI November 26, 1885, page 710.8

    Note the similarity in the terms used by Paul and the angel in describing the papacy. The angel calls it “the transgression of desolation;” Paul calls it “that Wicked,” just as though the papacy embraced all the wickedness in the world, and so it did. The papacy was to be so pre-eminently wicked that it could be sufficiently designated by the expression “that Wicked.”SITI November 26, 1885, page 710.9

    In Revelation 13:2, the change from paganism to papacy is noted in these words: “And the dragon [pagan Rome] gave him of [that is, the beast, papal Rome] his power, and his seat, and great authority.” If any one, however supposes that this change was an instantaneous one, accomplished by a sudden revelation, he is greatly mistaken. For several hundred years the papal power was growing almost unnoticed, before it succeeded in exalting itself above the ruins of paganism. Paul, 2 Thessalonians 2:6-8, brings this state of things to view, when he represents the “mystery of the iniquity” as working, but obliged to wait for its full development until paganism should be removed. We propose to give a few quotations that will indicate, as fully as is possible in our brief space, the rise of the papacy and the overthrow of paganism.SITI November 26, 1885, page 710.10

    “In the last great persecution under Diocletian [A. D. 284-305], the bishops of Rome probably fled once more to the Catacombs. Their churches were torn down, their property confiscated, their sacred writings destroyed, and a vigorous effort was made to extirpate the powerful sect. But the effort was vain. Constantine soon afterward became emperor, and the Bishop of Rome emerged from the Catacombs to become one of the ruling powers of the world. This sudden change was followed by an almost total loss of the simplicity and purity of the days of persecution. Magnificent churches were erected by the emperor in Rome, adorned with images and pictures, where the bishop sat on a lofty throne, encircled by inferior priests, and performing rites borrowed from the splendid ceremonial of the pagan temple. The Bishop of Rome became a prince of the empire, and lived in a style of luxury and pomp that awakened the envy or the just indication of the heathen writer, Marcellinus. The church was now enriched by the gifts and bequests of the pious and the timid; the bishops drew great revenues from his farms in the Campagna and his rich plantations in Sicily; he rode through the streets of Rome in a stately chariot and clothed in gorgeous attire; his table was supplied with a profusion more than imperial; the proudest women of Rome loaded him with lavish donations, and followed him with their flatteries and attentions; and his haughty bearing and profuse luxury were remarked upon by both pagans and Christians as strangely inconsistent with the humility and simplicity enjoined by the faith which he professed. The bishopric of Rome now became a splendid prize, for which the ambitious and unprincipled contended by force or fraud.”-Historical Studies, pp. 17, 18.SITI November 26, 1885, page 710.11

    Constantine became sole emperor of Western of Rome in 312 A.D. Shortly after (March, 313), he issued the famous Edict of Milan, which restored all forfeited civil and religious rights to the Christians, and it secured to them equal toleration with the pagans throughout the empire. This was an important step in advance. Gibbon, speaking of Constantine’s relation to Christianity, says: “By the edicts of toleration, he removed the temporal disadvantages which had hitherto regarded the progress of Christianity.... The exact balance of the two religions continued but a moment; and the piercing eye of ambition and avarice soon discovered that the profession of Christianity might contribute to the interest of the present as well as of the future life. The hopes of wealth and honors, the example of an emperor, his exhortations, his irresistible smile, diffused conviction among the venal and obsequious crowds which usually filled the apartments of a palace.... As the lower ranks of society are covered by imitation, the conversion of those who possessed any imminence of birth, of power, or of riches, was soon followed by [the conversion of] dependent multitudes.”-Decline and Fall, chap. 20, par. 18.SITI November 26, 1885, page 711.1

    In his “History of Latin Christianity,” book one, chapter 2, Milman quotes a single paragraph from an ancient historian, which shows the advancement made by the bishop of Rome by the close of the fourth century: “No wonder that for so magnificent a prize as the bishopric of Rome, then should contest with the utmost eagerness and obstinacy. To be enriched by the lavish donations of the principal females of the city; to ride, splendidly attired, in a stately chariot; to sit at a profuse, luxuriant, more than imperial, table,-these are of the rewards of successful ambition.”SITI November 26, 1885, page 711.2

    In the same chapter, Milman again says:-SITI November 26, 1885, page 711.3

    “The Pontificates of Damasus and Siricius [A.D. 367-398] beheld almost the last open struggles of expiring Roman paganism, the dispute concerning the Statue of Victory in the Senate, the succession of a large number of the more distinguished senators, the pleadings of the eloquent Symmachus for the toleration of the religion of ancient Rome. To such humiliation were reduced the deities of the Capitol, the gods, who, as was supposed, had achieved the conquest of the world, and laid it at the feet of Rome. But in this great contest the Bishop of Rome filled only an inferior part; it was Ambrose, the bishop of Milan, who enforced the final sentence of condemnation against paganism, asserted the sin, in a Christian emperor, of assuming any Imperial title connected with pagan worship, and of permitting any portion of the public revenue to be expended on the rites of idolatry. It was Ambrose who forbade the last marks of respect to the titular divinities of Rome in the public ceremonies.”SITI November 26, 1885, page 711.4

    The final triumph of the pseudo-christian religion was gained in the early part of the 6th century, when Pope Symmachus anathematized the Emperor Anastasius. See Cyclopedias, art. “Anastasius,” and “Decline and Fall,” chap. 47, par. 22. At the same time, paganism in the West was overthrown by Clovis, king of Franks, a cruel and bloodthirsty tyrant, who had been converted to the Christianity that was then popular, by his wife, Clothilde, who was a Catholic. Clovix had promised her that if he were victorious in a battle which he was about to fight near Cologne, A.D. 496, he would turn Christian. After a severe struggle, he gained the victory, and soon after had and several thousand of his followers were baptized. He afterward, A.D. 507-8, by virtue of his superior skill and strength in battle, succeeded in “converting” the entire nation of the Visigoths, so that Christianity became the nominal religion of the entire Roman world. (See “Decline and Fall,” chap. 38, par. 1-30; Guizot’s “History of France,” vol., chap. 7.) Because of these Christian acts, he received from the pope the title of “Most Christian King.”SITI November 26, 1885, page 711.5

    Thus was the “continual desolation” taken away that the “transgression of desolation” might run its course. In A.D. 538, as previously shown, the papacy became supreme by the conquest of its rivals, and it pursued its career unchecked until 1798. Since then its temporal power has gradually become extinct, but its spiritual power, though seemingly limited, is greater than ever. Its opposition to “all that is called God, or that is worshiped,” has not diminished, nor will it cease until the Lord shall consume that Wicked with the spirit of his mouth, and destroy it with the brightness of his coming. 2 Thessalonians 2:8. E. J. W.SITI November 26, 1885, page 711.6

    “Judged by the Law” The Signs of the Times, 11, 45.

    E. J. Waggoner

    “For as many as have sinned without law shall also perish without law; and as many as have sinned in the law shall be judged by the law; ... in the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ.” Romans 2:12-16.SITI November 26, 1885, page 712.1

    In the two verses here quoted, there is matter for our most serious consideration, which does not appear from a casual reading. In them are brought to view the Judgment. We speak of the day of Judgment as “The day of wrath, that dreadful day,” and it is doubtful if any one can really think of that day without feelings of awe or terror; yet no one can have any just appreciation of its awfulness unless he has carefully studied the law of God, by which men are then to be judged; and our sense of the terrors of that day will be exactly in proportion to our understanding of the far-reaching sanctions of that holy law.SITI November 26, 1885, page 712.2

    The verses before us mention two classes,-those who have sinned without law, and those who, having sinned in the law, are to be judged by the law. The second class is the one with which we are specially concerned; but before we can fully comprehend what is said of it, we must briefly notice the class with which it is contrasted.SITI November 26, 1885, page 712.3

    This text gives no authority whatever for the theory that there are any people in the world on whom God’s law has no claims. The term “without law” is fully explained in verses 14 and 15, which are parenthetical. “For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature of the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves; which show the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the meanwhile accusing or else excusing one another.”SITI November 26, 1885, page 712.4

    In the first chapter of Romans, the heathen, here spoken of as those “without the law,” are described. There it is plainly shown that there ignorant blindness is due to their own willful disobedience. “Because that when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but because vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.” Romans 1:21. There was a time when all men knew God; but now many have been given over to “a reprobate mind.” Notwithstanding this, every man who has not driven the Spirit of God from him forever, has as a legacy from Adam in his purity, some trace of the law of God in his heart. It was not alone in outward form, but in character as well, that Adam was formed in the image of God. Man in his first estate was like God, holy, because God’s law, which is the transcript that his character, was within his heart. When he fell, this image was marred. Each successive sin makes an additional blot upon that copy of the law in the heart, until, by a long course of sin, it is completely obliterated. Christ, the sinless One, said “I delight to do thy will, O my God; yea, I law is within my heart.” Psalm 40:8. The work of the gospel is to bring men back to their lost allegiance, to reconcile them to God (2 Corinthians 5:20), and write the entire law once more in their hearts (Jeremiah 31:33; Hebrews 8:10), that thus they may be wholly conformed to God’s image,-“partakers of the divine image.”SITI November 26, 1885, page 712.5

    Paul says that the heathen, who have not the written law, give evidence of traces of the law written in their hearts, from the fact that when they do things that are commanded or forbidden by the law, their conscience bears witness, and their thoughts either accuse or else excuse the commission of those deeds. The contrast, then, between “without the law,” and “in the law,” is simply a contrast between no revelation and God’s written word; and the two classes brought to view are those who have not the Bible, and those who have the full light of the written word of God.SITI November 26, 1885, page 713.1

    It is evident, then, that those who “perish without law,” are those who are punished for the sins which they have committed in face of the law which they had by nature. They had the law; for sin is imputed to them (verse 12), and “sin is not in imputed where there is no law.” Romans 5:13. But they did not have the written law; consequently the written law, in its wondrous breadth, is not brought against them in the Judgment; they are judged simply by as much of the law as they had, and this alone is sufficient to condemn them.SITI November 26, 1885, page 713.2

    Now it is still further evident that this judgment of the heathen can go but little, if any, further than the bare letter of the law. That is, for instance, the law will take cognizance, in the case of the heathen, only of the actual murder which he committed when he knew that he ought not to kill, and will not bring before him the envy and jealousy, which, in the absence of the written word, he perhaps did not recognize as being wrong. But “all unrighteousness is sin” (1 John 5:17), and “the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23), and therefore “for his iniquity that he hath done shall he die.” This, in brief, is what is meant by “not having the law,” and by perishing “without law.”SITI November 26, 1885, page 713.3

    Now what of those to having “sinned in the law,” are to be “judged by the law”? We have already seen that this class comprises those who have the light of the written revelation. Then since they are to be judged by what they have, it is evident that they are to be judged by all that may be learned from the word of God. Instead of being judged according to the mere letter of the law, i.e., by that which may be understood by merely reading the law, they are to be judged according to the fullest intent of the law,-by all that may be understood by earnest, prayerful meditation in the law.SITI November 26, 1885, page 713.4

    In Hebrews 4:12 we read that the “word of God is quick and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.” From the sermon on the mount,-that sermon that moralists are so fond of quoting, we learn that he who is unjustly angry with another is in as much danger of the Judgment as he who takes another’s life; and John plainly declares that “whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer.” 1 John 3:15. Again our Saviour said: “Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commnit adultery.” Matthew 5:27. Here Christ quotes the seventh commandment as something known of old. All knew the penalty for violating it; but the scribes and Pharisees had taught that nothing but adultery as an actually accomplished fact could be considered a violation of the commandment. But Christ said of it, “But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh upon a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.”SITI November 26, 1885, page 713.5

    These two instances, which are but samples of what might be said of all the commandments, serve to give us some idea of what the psalmist sought in the law when he said, “Ihave seen an end of all perfection; but thy commandment is exceeding brought.” Psalm 119:96. So broad is it that it takes notice of an unexpressed thought or a single glance of the eye.SITI November 26, 1885, page 713.6

    We claim that it is the law in its depth and breadth, the law as it discerns the thoughts and intents of the heart, to which Paul refers when he says of a certain class that they shall be “judged by the law.” This claim is sanctioned by the verse which says that this judgment shall take place “in the day when God shall judge the secrets of men.” It is evident there is a difference between the judgment of those who sin “without law” and that of those who sin “in the law.” Now what can this difference be, since, as we have already seen, the law is the standard of judgment in both cases? The only difference can be that the latter class endure a more rigid test than the former.SITI November 26, 1885, page 713.7

    Notice, further, that the phrase “in the law” refers to all who have the written word, and that therefore this rigid test, which is going to take into account the remotest thoughts of the heart, is to be applied to every one who has the Bible, that is, to all the inhabitants of so-called Christian lands. That is that which may well cause us all to tremble at the thought of “that dreadful day.” Multitudes who pride themselves on their strict morality will be found in that day to be but whited sepulchers, fair without, but full of corruption within. Thousands of professed Christians who stand high in the estimation of their brethren, perhaps also in their own estimation, will then be bidden to depart as “workers of iniquity;” “for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.”SITI November 26, 1885, page 713.8

    In this connection we also have another thought worthy of serious consideration. After enumerating the vices of the heathen (Romans 1:24-32), Paul continues: “Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest; for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things.” Romans 2:1. Now there is not an individual who has ever read Romans 1:24-32 who has not decided that the things there set forth are exceedingly wrong. But the apostle says, “Thou that judgest doest the same things.” What! have we all committed murder and adultery? are we all guilty of all that list of outbreaking sins? Not openly; so far as the actual deed is concerned, we may have committed scarcely any of those acts. But we have all harbored the thoughts which, if cherished and allowed to pursue their actual course, would develop into those very sins. We have already seen that a wrong desire is counted as a violation of the commandment; but here we learn something further. We learn that the evil thought cherished by one who has the light of God’s word, is in the sight of God as great a crime as the actual deed is when committed by a heathen. The professed Christian who indulges in anger or harbors evil thoughts is as guilty before God as the benighted heathen who kills and eats his enemy.SITI November 26, 1885, page 713.9

    We begin to see that the commandment is indeed “exceeding broad;” we may also feel a little less satisfied over the superiority above the heathen, which we fancy we enjoy. As we read of the Hindoo throwing himself before the car of Juggernaut, or perchance see the Chinaman bowing before his horrid-looking Joss, or think of the barbarous rites with which savage worship is accompanied, we shudder at the depth of wickedness revealed. But when we read that “rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry,” we may well turn upon ourselves the look of pity and scorn. How many professed Christians are there who are never stubbornly set upon carrying out their own plans, regardless of the wishes of their brethren? Comparatively few, we fear, always follow the directions laid down in 1 Corinthians 1:10 and 1 Peter 5:5. How many who profess to keep “the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus,” never indulge any rebellious feelings? It may be rebellion against duty which God has made known through the spirit of prophecy, or against those placed in authority. Whatever it is, the rebellious or stubborn one is as vile in God’s sight as the one who “in his blindness bows down to wood and stone.” Is there not cause for us all to cry out, “God be merciful to me, the sinner”?SITI November 26, 1885, page 713.10

    And to give force to these thoughts we have the assurance that, “the great day of the Lord is near, it is near, and hasteth greatly.” The Lord is near, “even at the doors,” and when he comes, he will “bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts.” 1 Corinthians 4:5. And what weight against us those hidden and seemingly insignificant thoughts will have. How often we would gladly forget them; sometimes we succeed. But sooner or later they will be made known in all their terrible heinousness. What shall we do? Let us face them now. Let us pray in the Lord, “Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of thy law.” “Let us search and try our ways, and turn again to the Lord;” “let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts;” and we have the blest assurance that if we do this God will “abundantly pardon,” and will “cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” E. J. W.SITI November 26, 1885, page 713.11

    “Shifting Responsibility” The Signs of the Times, 11, 45.

    E. J. Waggoner

    The following paragraph we recently came across in a religious exchange:-SITI November 26, 1885, page 713.12

    “In a recent address Professor Drummond said that he was once conversing with an infidel, when a well-known gentleman passed them on the road. ‘That gentleman,’ said the infidel, pointing to the passer-by, ‘is the founder of our infidel club.’ ‘What,’ said Mr. Drummond, in startled tones, ‘why that is Mr. So-and-so, an influential man in such a church!’ ‘Yes,’ said the infidel, ‘we know he professes Christianity; but his inconsistencies have driven many of us into infidelity, and led to the founding of our club.’”SITI November 26, 1885, page 713.13

    From the above, which is undoubtedly true, there are two lessons to be learned. The first is that Christians, if they are not consistent in their life, are active agents of the devil. Says Christ: “He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad.” Matthew 12:30. Many professed Christians would be shocked to be told that they are doing missionary work for Satan, yet they can easily convince themselves that such is the case. Let them seriously ask, Am I doing my duty? Do I honor Christ and the profession that I make? Is my influence positive on the Lord’s side? Unless these questions can be answered affirmatively, they may know that they are driving men away from Christ. The name of God is blasphemed because of the lives of any of his professed followers. Romans 2:21-24. How terrible to think that there is more blasphemy than there would be if many who profess to love God were not in existence.SITI November 26, 1885, page 713.14

    Some professors think to make amends by acknowledging their false position without correcting it. They will try to teach unbelievers, but will say, “Don’t take me for an example; you must not judge of Christianity by me.” But that is just what the world must do. Christians are here in order that this world may be able to judge of Christianity. Said Christ to his disciples; “Ye are the light of the world;” and he prayed that they might “be made perfect in one,” so that the world might know that he was from God. One of the first things the professor of Christianity should think about is that worldlings will watch him closely, and that they will know whether he is really a Christian or not. They can tell the genuine article every time.SITI November 26, 1885, page 714.1

    And this brings us to the second lesson that may be learned from the paragraph quoted. It is this: The fact that professed Christians do not fulfill their obligations, is not the slightest excuse for anybody’s unbelief. Whenever worldlings criticize the inconsistencies of professed Christians, they at once condemn themselves; for by their criticisms they show that they know what ought to be done. And their punishment for evil-doing will be none the less because it was a professed Christian who led them astray. As for the professor, the Judgment alone will reveal the responsibility that attaches to him for his scattering influence. Taking it all together, neither Christians nor infidels have anything from which to derive comfort for a course of wrong-doing. E. J. W.SITI November 26, 1885, page 714.2

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