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by Dr. John Thomas
This He purposed to do in such a way as to make man reflect the divine nature in his character: and to display his own wisdom, glory, and power in the earth.
But chance could not bring this to pass.
Human life, therefore, was not to be a mere chapter of accidents; but the result of a well-digested and unvarying plan.
Things, then, were to be arranged according to this purpose; so that in their original constitution should be contained the rudiments of a "glorious manifestation"; which, as a grain of mustard seed, should so unfold themselves under the fostering hand of God as to become "a tree, which is the greatest among herbs," in whose branches the family of man might be refreshed.
In the acorn, it is said, can be traced by aid of the microscope the branches of the future oak.
So in "the Rudiments of the World" are traceable the things of the future Kingdom of God.
These rudiments, or elements, are exhibited in the sentences upon the serpent, the woman, and the man; and in that institution styled, "The Way of the Tree of Life".
Out of these things was afterwards to arise the Kingdom of God; so that in constituting them, a foundation was laid upon which "the world to come" should be built; even that world of which Abraham was constituted the heir; and which, when finished at the end of six days of a thousand years each, will manifest the woman's Seed triumphant over the Serpent-power; resting from his work in the Sabbatism which remains for the people of God.
The things laid, or fixed, in the rudimental constitution of the world, may be summarily stated in the following particulars: Sin in the flesh, the enemy of God, contending for the dominion of the world.
Mankind in a state of nature, subject to the propensities; and to pain, trouble and death.
Labour and toil the condition of existence in the present state.
The subjection of woman to the lordship of man.
To these things was established a divine antagonism, by which they might be controlled; and a system of things elaborated in conformity with the purpose of God.
This part of the foundation may be stated as: The law and truth of God as expressed in "His Way," demanding unreserved submission to its authority.
Mankind under the influence of this truth assuredly believed, contending for it.
Divine power exhibited in the punishment of men, and in the performance of His promises.
The action and re-action of these agencies upon one another was to produce: An enmity and war in the earth between the Sin-power and the Institution opposed to it.
A bloody persecution of the adherents of the truth.
The destruction of the Sin-power by a personage to be manifested for the purpose; and The consequent victory of divine truth, and establishment of the Kingdom of God.
That the crisis of the fall was the period of laying the foundation of the world, in its civil, social, and spiritual relations, appears from the use of the phrase in the apostolic writings.
The Lord Jesus, speaking of what was about to come upon the generation then living in Judea, said, "The blood of all the prophets shed from the foundation of the world shall be required of this generation"; and to show to what period of the world he referred, he added by way of explanation, "from the blood of Abel," the prophet of his day.
The phrase is also applied by the apostle to the work of the six days; that is, as the bash, or substratum, in or upon which the social and political system was constituted.
There is further proof of the judgment of the transgressors being the institutional foundation of the world, in the words, "all that dwell upon the earth shall do homage to him," the ten-horned papal Beast, "whose names are not written in the Book of Life of the Lamb slain from the laying of the world's foundations".