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Elpis Israel
by Dr. John Thomas

None can eat his flesh, if they would, but those who are circumcised in heart; for to eat his flesh is to digest, and make a part of our mental selves, the truth concerning the kingdom of God and Jesus Christ.

This is the spiritual food upon which the believer's spiritual existence is sustained.

As Jehovah's first-born son was saved by the blood of the passover lamb in Egypt; so also is the believer in the kingdom saved by the blood of Christ; so that when the day of retribution comes, and the first-born of all the nations, "who know not God, and obey not the gospel," are destroyed, the angel of death will pass over him, and he shall not be harmed.

But while the passover has this spiritual signification, it also represents facts, or events, which will be made manifest in connection with Israel at the appearing of their king in glory.

This is evident, from the saying of Christ while partaking of the Passover with his apostles, the future sovereigns of the tribes.

"With desire," said he, "I have desired to eat this passover with you before I suffer: for I say unto you, I will not any more eat thereof, until it be fulfilled in the kingdom of God"; and "I will not drink of the fruit of the vine, until the kingdom of God shall come".

And, of this kingdom, he said, "I appoint unto you a kingdom, as my Father hath appointed unto me; that ye may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom, and sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel".

From this, then, it is clear that the passover was prophetic of what is to be fulfilled in the kingdom of God.

Has that kingdom come?

If it has, as some very erroneously affirm, then Christ has eaten another passover, and has again drunk of wine with his apostles; for he said he would do so when the kingdom had come.

But no man in his senses will affirm this.

Another passover could not be celebrated till a year after; so that Jesus could not eat it with his disciples before that.

Where is the testimony to his eating it with them then?

There is none; but much of a contrary nature every way.

The gracious declaration of Jesus is, I will eat of this passover, and drink of the fruit of the vine, with you in the Kingdom of God when it shall be come.

He did not say, when you shall go to the kingdom beyond the skies, but when the kingdom shall come, which he had taught them to pray for.

It is perfectly ridiculous to talk about the kingdom having come, and of the apostles being on their thrones.

To affirm this proves that the professor is totally ignorant of the gospel.

A pretty sitting upon thrones it was, when they were all arraigned at the bar, condemned, imprisoned, and scourged, for preaching the gospel of the kingdom in the name of Jesus!

What havoc the apostasy has made with the truth!

The gospel preached no such stuff as this.

It treats of a kingdom which the God of heaven shall set up in Judea: which shall never be removed from thence; in which the whole twelve tribes shall rejoice; which the saints of all ages shall possess; and which shall rule over all.

Its elements at present are all scattered.