Eureka - An Exposition of the Apocalypse - John Thomas
Chapter 16 14.
Third General Division Vol. 2 p. 111 The Little Open Scroll The Seventh Seal, Seventh Trumpet, Seventh Vial, and Seven Thunders, from the manifestation of Christ and his Brethren under the going forth of the Frog-like Unclean Spirit out of the Mouth of the False Prophet, in the third and last section of the Frog Sign, and third part of the Sixth Vial: -- from this the initiation of "the manifestation of the Sons of the Deity" as the Lamb in the midst of the 144,000 redeemed from the earth; to the full establishment of the Millennial Throne and Kingdom of David, coeval with, and consequent upon, the utter destruction of Daniel's "dreadful and terrible" Fourth Beast, which comprehends as its constituents the Apocalyptic Beast of the Sea, Beast of the Earth, Image of the Beast, False Prophet, Scarlet-colored Beast, and the Drunken Babylonian Harlot, with all her Daughters and Abominations, "the Names and Denominations of Christendom:" and the subjection, but not extermination, of his first three, the Lion, the Bear, and the Leopard, answering to the Apocalyptic Dragon, bound, and shut up in the abyss for a thousand years. Apoc. 4:5; 5:5-14; 7:9-17; 10; 11:15-19; 13:10; 14; 15; 16:15-21; 17:14; 18; 19; 20:1-6, 11-15; 21:8. TIME OF EVENTS "The Time of the End," (Dan. 8:17; 11:40; 12:1-4) which commences from the Quadrennial Epoch, a.d. 1860-'4, and terminates a.d. 1904-'8 The Sixth Special Division of the Seventh Trumpet ACT VI -- SIXTH VIAL PART 3 Apocalypse 16:15 While the Frog-like Spirits are working, "the Lord the Spirit" (2 Cor. 3:17, 18) comes into the world "as a thief." He descends from heaven having great power -- the key of the abyss and a great chain (Apoc. 18:1; 20:1) -- for the work of killing with the sword them who destroy the earth; and of enlightening it with his glory (Apoc. 13:10; 11:18; 18:1). Having been clothed with a cloud (Apoc. 10:1; Heb. 12:1) of witnesses, he stands on Mount Zion in the midst of 144,000 -- his companions and co-workers -- the Mystical Son of Man, whose voice is as the voice of a multitude (Apoc. 14:1; Dan. 10:6) -- as the sound of many waters (Apoc. 1:15). His head is encircled with the rainbow of the covenant; his face is as the sun, and his goings forth as pillars of fire. Thus prepared, he stands ready for action with his right foot upon the Sea-beast, and his left upon the Earth-beast, and a Little Open Scroll in his hand, upon which are inscribed, "the lightnings, and voices, and thunderings, and earthquakes, and great hail" -- the Seven Thunders proceeding from the throne -- to be ministered by those who are honored to take the Scroll, and to eat it up (Apoc. 10:9; 11:19; 4:5). Now is the judgment of the nations -- "the hour of judgment," in which they are invited to fear the Deity, and to give glory to him (Apoc. 14:6, 7). Proclamation is made by the "One Body," now anointed and glorified, and of which the Lord Jesus is the Head, that "time shall be no longer." Daniel's 1260 time shall then terminate -- and the finishing of the mystery of the Deity be apocalypsed (Apoc. 10:6, 7). The glorified members of this Body sing a new song before the throne; and confidently aver, as the result of the events prefigured in the ensuing fourteenth chapter, that they shall reign as the kings and priests of Deity upon the earth (Apoc. 14:3; 5:9, 10). Fourth Part of Sixth Vial Apocalypse 16:16 The Advent, or "Manifestation of the Sons of the Deity" (Rom. 8:19; 1 John 3:1, 2) having transpired, the Angel of the Sixth Vial gathers the kings, or rulers, of the Earth-beast, and of the whole habitable, or Sea-beast, into the place styled in Hebrew, Armageddon. This gathering effected the events of the Seventh Vial (which are the Seven Thunders hurled by the Second and Third Angels against Babylon and the worshippers of the Beast and his Image; and the Harvest and Vintage of the Son of Man and the three angels exhibited in the fourteenth chapter) -- finish the mystery, and the wrath of the Deity against mankind is stayed. Chapter 14 Dissolution of the Laodicean State Translation 1. "And I looked, and behold a Lamb stood upon the Mount Sion, and with him a hundred forty-four thousands, having the name of his Father, which had been written upon their foreheads. 2. And I heard a sound from the heaven as a sound of many waters, and as a sound of loud thunder. And I heard a voice of harpers harping with their harps. 3. And they sing as it were a new song in the presence of the throne, and in the presence of the four living ones, and of the elders: and no one was able to learn the song, except the hundred forty-four thousands, who had been redeemed from the earth. 4. These are they who had not been contaminated with women; for they are virgins. These are the attendants upon the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These had been redeemed from among men, an offering of first fruits for the Deity and for the Lamb. 5. And in their mouth had been found no guile; for they are faultless in the presence of the throne of the Deity. 6. And I saw another angel flying in midheaven, having aionian news to proclaim to them who dwell upon the earth, even every nation and tribe and tongue and people; 7. Saying with a loud voice, Fear the Deity, and give to him glory, for the hour of his judgment hath arrived; and do homage to him who hath made the heaven and the earth and sea and fountains of waters. 8. And another angel followed, saying, Fallen, fallen hath Babylon the great city; because she hath made all nations drink of the wine of the raging of her fornication. 9. And a third angel followed them, saying, with a loud voice, If any one worship the Beast and his Image, and receive a sign upon his forehead, or upon his hand, 10. He also shall drink of the wine of the wrath of the Deity, which hath been prepared without mixture in the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the Holy Angels, and in the presence of the Lamb. 11. And the smoke of their torment ascendeth until the aeons of aeons: and they have no respite day and night, who worship the Beast and his Image, and whosoever receiveth the sign of his name. 12. Here is the patience of the saints; here they who keep the commandments of the Deity and the faith of Jesus. 13. And I heard a voice from the heaven, saying to me, Write! Blessed the dead dying in the Lord from this time. Yea, saith the Spirit, in order that they may take rest from their labors; and their work he goes in aid of with them. 14. And I looked, and behold a white cloud, and upon the cloud one sitting like to a son of man, having upon his head a golden stephan, and in his hand a sharp sickle. 15. And another angel came out of the Nave, vociferating with a loud voice to him sitting upon the cloud, Thrust in thy sickle, and reap, because for thee hath arrived the hour of the reaping, for the harvest of the earth hath been ripened. 16. And he that is sitting upon the cloud cast his sickle upon the earth, and the earth was reaped. 17. And another angel came out from the Nave which is in the heaven, he having also a sharp sickle. 18. And another angel came out from the altar, having power over the fire, and he shouted with a great outcry to him having the sharp sickle, saying, Thrust in thy sharp sickle, and cut off the clusters of the earth, for her grapes are fully ripe. 19. And the angel cast his sickle into the earth, and cut off the vine of the earth, and cast it into the great winepress of the wrath of the Deity. 20. And the winepress was trodden without the city, and blood came out from the winepress unto the bridles of the horses, for a thousand six hundred furlongs. Remarks on the Translation By comparing the above with the Common Version the reader will see the difference for himself. I have found no benefit in the labors of the "recent editors" who have undertaken to mend the Greek text. They seem to think nothing of "taking away from the words of the book of this prophecy;" and of "adding" thereto -- Ch. 22:18, 19. We have examples of this editorial recklessness in the chapter before us. The first occurs in a note upon to onoma, "the name" in verse 1. "All the recent editors for to anoma, have to anoma autou kai to onoma. I recommend", says the revising editor of the Baptist New Version, "that this reading be followed and translated: his name and the name." But I have not followed the recommendation, because the proposed alteration is superfluous, and implies two names, the name of the Father and the name of the Lamb. But the name of the Father is also the name of the Lamb; and therefore the phrase, "the name," is doubtless correct, and certainly all sufficient. Again, in Verse 2, on the words, "I heard the voice of harpers," etc., a note runs thus, "instead of phonen ekousa, all the recent editions have he phone hen ekousa hos. I recommend that this reading be adopted and translated: the voice which I heard (was) as." Now this would imply that the voice of the harpers was as "the sound of great thunder" -- a noise not very creditable to their music! The recent editors err in supposing that phonen, used four times in the second verse, refers to the same voice or sound. This is not the fact. The sound of many waters, and the sound of loud thunder, are the sounds of acclamation and war; while the voice of harpers is the song of personal redemption, and future glory, when the war is over. I have therefore disregarded the decision of "the recent editors;" and maintained the distinction between the thundering and the harping, by dividing the second verse, and translating the phoneof thunder "sound," and the phone of the singing harpers, "voice," in the sense of music and song. Again, "the recent editors" do not like the word dolos, "guile", in verse 5, but substitute the word pseuthos, "lie". A man that is guileless does not lie; but a man may not lie, and yet be full of deceit. The change may be more favorable to their morality; but I doubt not altogether unnecessary. Again, "all the recent editors" cancel the words, enopion tou thronou tou Theou. "I recommend," says the reviser, "that this reading be adopted, and that the words, 'before the throne of God,' be omitted" from the fifth verse, so that with this editorial mutilation it would read, "and in their mouth was found no lie; for they are faultless." But, where do they stand in this faultless condition? The recent editors have cancelled the answer; I therefore restore it, and insert it in my translation; as, before, or "in the presence of the throne of the Deity," as represented in ch. 4:4. In the sixth verse, I have left the word aionion untranslated. I have transferred it merely. The "aionian good news" will be the subject of exposition, when it will be seen that "everlasting" is not the word best suited to express its quality. We may find a better word when we see distinctly what the thing is; or "aionian" being understood in its true sense may be suffered to remain. Again, in verse 15, it reads, hoti elthe soi he hora tou therisai "because for thee hath arrived the hour of the reaping." The "recent editors" omit the word soi, for thee, though the order is addressed to a certain party. The hour of the reaping hath arrived. But by whom? Their recencies have struck out the answer in suppressing the words "for thee". I have restored them; and the answer is "for thee, upon the cloud." And here we may dismiss "all the recent editors" as more of a pest than a blessing to the original Greek text of the revealing Spirit. 1. The Lamb upon Mount Zion "And I looked, and behold, a Lamb stood upon the Mount Zion, and with him 144,000, having the Name of his Father, which had been written upon their foreheads" -- Verse 1. All the events represented in this fourteenth chapter are in the future; for nothing having the least resemblance to them has ever been transacted upon the earth since the Deity gave the Apocalypse to Jesus Christ, who sent and signified it by his angel to John in Patmos. But, though all in that which is hereafter to become history, it is not unconnected with the things treated of in previous parts of the Apocalypse. Thus, the Lamb and his 144,000 virgin-companions (Psa. 45:14), are represented in the first chapter by the Son of Man clothed with a garment of linen (Dan. 10:5) whose voice is as the sound of many waters, or the voice of a multitude (Dan. 10:6). They are the One sitting upon the throne, the New Throne in the opened heavens; and the four and twenty Elders in white raiment and golden stephans; and the Four Living Ones full of eyes, in the midst of the throne, and around it, exhibited in the fourth chapter. The 144,000 are exegetical of the symbolic Lamb whose personal chieftain, or Head, is Jesus Christ, "the Captain of their salvation," or the Deity manifested in flesh, justified by spirit (1 Tim. 3:16). He is the Lamb slain, and they are in him; and therefore constituents of the symbolic and mystical Lamb; an idea emblematically signified by the phrase, "with him 144,000". In other words, Jesus and his Brethren "glorified together" (Rom. 8:17), are the Seven Lamps of Fire burning before the throne, or the Seven Spirits of the Deity sent forth into all the earth, represented by a Lamb with Seven Horns and Seven Eyes; that is, they are the Omnipotent and Omniscient Power in substantial and glorious manifestation, styled Yahweh Ail-Shaddai, "He who shall be the strength of the Mighty Ones, who was, and is, and is to come," and is superlatively holy -- Ch. 4:5, 8; 5:6; Psa. 50:1-6. The wool with which the Lamb is clothed is of snowy whiteness -- Isa. 1:18; Apoc. 1:14. Standing in the midst of 144,000, invested with "fine linen, clean and white," he is clothed with a pure and faultless multitude; which is his snowy fleece, washed and made white in the blood of the individual Lamb, Jesus -- ch. 1:5; 7:14. This Seven Horned and Seven Eyed Lamb-Multitude is the Mighty Angel descended from the heaven, clothed with a cloud; and holding in his hand a Little Open Scroll -- ch. 10:1. One thing, however, is particularly to be observed here, namely, that, though this cloud-invested angel, and the Lamb with the 144,000, symbolize the same multitude, they represent this multitude in different positions and stages of its career. In this fourteenth chapter, while on Mount Zion, the multitude is "in the heaven," having opened the door, entered therein, and set up the throne (ch. 4:1, 2; Psa. 24:7; Dan. 2:44): but, in the tenth chapter (though without abandoning the seat of government) the almighty, cloud-invested, angel-Lamb and his companions, "come down from the heaven," and take up a position upon the earth and sea -- verses 1, 2, 5, 8. In other words, war has been declared against the Beast of the Earth, the Beast of the Sea, the Image of the Beast, and the False Prophet; that is, against all Europe, for the utter destruction of all its institutions, civil and ecclesiastical; and the subjugation of all its peoples, nations, tongues, and rulers, to the absolute sovereignty of David's Son and Lord (Psa. 110:1). The Lamb and his 144,000, "who follow him whithersoever he goes," engaged in this, "the war of that great day of the all-powerful Deity" (ch. 16:14), are the cloud-invested angel in the territories of the enemy which they have invaded, and in which they are progressing as pillars of fire." In this warfare they are giving practical expression to the unwritten utterances of the Seven Thunders -- unwritten in the tenth chapter; but illustrated in the fourteenth, from the eighth verse to the end. The Lamb and 144,000 are the Nave of the Deity opened in the heaven in which is seen the Ark of his testimony (ch. 11:19). "Yahweh Ail-Shaddai is the Nave, even the Lamb -- ho Kurios ho Theos ho pantokrator, naos autes esti, kai to arnion (ch. 21:22). Yahweh-Ail, or Kurios and Shaddai, or Theos, constitute the Lamb. In other words, the Multitudinous Unity, indicated by Jesus in his prayer, that believers into him through the Apostolic word "may be one, as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us" (John 17:21). This unity is many individuals in One Body. This body when deified is the Nave, or Most Holy, as represented by the thrice uttered exclamation of the Four Living Ones, "Holy, holy, holy!!!" The Ark of the testimony is in this body when manifested in glory -- "Christ the Head over all for the ecclesia, which is his body" (Eph. 1:22, 23). John saw the Lamb and his virgin companions, or Bride, standing upon Mount Zion. This is the platform, or standing-place, of their Body Politic, both as the Holy, and the Most Holy community. In the state previous to the advent of Christ, the Saints are the 144,000 in great tribulation, being subject to hunger and thirst, sun-stroke, and scorching heat -- ch. 7:4, 14, 16. In this state of things they are subjected to the "much tribulation," through which, Paul testifies, "we must enter into the kingdom of the Deity" (Acts 14:22). They are an election taken out from the nations, by obedience of faith, for His Name (Acts 15:14; Rom. 1:5): by which faith in "the things concerning the kingdom of the Deity, and the name of Jesus Christ," "they walk," and "are come to Mount Zion, and unto the City of the living God, the Heavenly Jerusalem" (2 Cor. 5:7; Acts 8:12; Heb. 12:22). Though scattered and dispersed, and natives of divers remote places, when viewed collectively they are regarded as being born in Zion; and constituting the Holy City, the heavenly Jerusalem; for the time being trodden under foot by the worshippers of the Beast. "Glorious things are spoken concerning Zion, the city of the Elohim" -- ir hah-Elohim. Those who believe these glorious things, and are born of water, become citizens of Zion; so that when Yahweh writeth up the people, He will count that they were born there; for all His springs are in Zion, and He Himself will establish her (Psa. 87; Gal. 4:26; Apoc. 11:2). But the time approaches when in a literal or unfigurative sense, "our feet shall stand within thy gates, O Jerusalem." This standing was represented to John in the standing of the Lamb and the 144,000 on Mount Zion, where are then "set thrones of judgment, the thrones of the house of David" (Psa. 122:2-5). These "thrones of the House of David" belong to Zion, and nowhere else. They do not belong to the Seven Mountains, or Rome; but to the Holy Hill of Zion, which the Father styles His, in Psa. 2:6. These are the thrones in the heaven which John saw there after the door was opened -- the twenty-four thrones circling about the central rainbowed throne, occupied by the Jasper and Sardine Stone, the twenty-four elders, and the four living ones (Apoc. 4:3, 4, 6: an emblematic illustration of the promise, "to him that overcometh I will give to sit with me on my throne, even as I overcame and sit with my Father on his throne (ch. 3:21). These thrones of the House of David belonging to Mount Zion are the thrones John refers to in ch. 20:4. "I saw thrones," says he, "and they sat upon them, and judgment was given to them. And I saw the souls of them who had been beheaded on account of the testimony of Jesus, and on account of the word of the Deity, and who did no homage to the beast, nor to his image, and received not the sign upon their foreheads and upon their hands". These are the 144,000 on Mount Zion, who, having been raised from among the dead, and quickened, and had judgment given to them, occupy "thrones of judgment," and thenceforth "reign with Christ a thousand years." Among them are the twelve apostles, to whom the Lord Jesus in the days of his flesh, promised a joint possession with himself of thrones of the House of David. In answer to Peter who said, "Behold, we have forsaken all, and followed thee: what therefore shall there be for us?" Jesus replied, "Ye who have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of Man shall sit upon the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel" (Matt. 19:27, 28). Among these also will be Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and all the prophets; and worthies from the east, and west, and north, and south; a great multitude, which no man can number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues -- all these stand before the throne and the Lamb, as the glorified 144,000, clothed with white robes; and when they rest from their labors, "with palms," instead of a two-edged sword, "in their hands" (Luke 13:28, 29; Apoc. 7:9; Psa. 149:6). The symbolic Lamb and 144,000 on Mount Zion are Yahweh Tz'vaoth, He who shall be hosts, of whom Isaiah prophesies in ch. 6, "I saw," saith he, "Adonai (the Spirit in plural manifestation -- Lords) sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his robe-skirts filled the temple. Above it stood the Seraphim; each one had six wings; and one cried to another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, Yahweh Tz'vaoth; the whole earth is full of his glory". Adonai with robe-skirts filling the temple is the Spirit as the Lamb and the 144,000. These thousands are the skirts of the investing robe of "the King" Yahweh Tz'vaoth; and symbolized by the six-winged Seraphim, or four living ones full of eyes, described by John in ch. 4:6, 7, 8. That Adonai is One in plural manifestation, appears from the eighth verse. "I heard," saith Isaiah, the voice of Adonai, saying, Whom shall I send? and who will go for US?" In other words, Whom shall I, the Spirit, or the Father, send? Who will go for us, the plurality symbolized by the Seraph-skirts of the investing robe? The Spirit of Christ in the prophet answers, "Here am I; send me!" And He said "Go!" In the ninth and tenth verses is the message to be delivered to Israel. The delivery is noted in Matt. 13:13-15, and the Messenger is there found to be Jesus. He came, and was slain. He was "delivered for our offences, and raised again for our justification" (Rom. 4:25). Unto him, then, "the faithful witness, the first begotten of the dead, and the Prince of the Kings of the Earth, unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, and hath made us Kings and Priests for the Deity and his Father; to him be glory and dominion, for the aens of the aeons, Amen" (Apoc. 1:5-6). This is the ascription of Isaiah's Seraphim, of Ezekiel's Cherubim, and of John's four Living Ones, and therefore of the 144,000, to the Lamb for what he has done for them. The question, "Who will go for us?" has been graciously responded to by the loving self-sacrifice of Christ for the ungodly (Rom. 5:6-8). But for this voluntary and disinterested sacrifice, there would be no redemption; and therefore no Seraphic 144,000 hereafter on Mount Zion, or anywhere else. But, the redemption price has been paid, and all the Seals will be thoroughly unloosed. As certainly as the Lamb was slain, so surely will he appear on the Mount Zion, with the 144,000; when the moon of the political firmament shall be confounded, and the sun ashamed, when "He who shall be hosts" (Yahweh Tz'vaoth) shall reign on Mount Zion, and in Jerusalem, and before his Ancients gloriously (Isa. 24:23). Much that ought to be said about the 144,000 has already appeared in Vol. II ch. 7 : 5, 6, to which the reader is referred. They are the "holy nation" the root of whose square is 12. The Name of the Lamb's Father is theirs; for they are said to have it. The Father's Name is representative of what He is -- of His power, glory, substance, and character. The Anointed Jesus is now the apaugasma, or reflected splendor, of the glory of the Father; and the karakter, or exact likeness, of his hupostasis, or substance (Heb. 1:3). He is, therefore, "the Image of the Invisible Deity;" and occupies the rank of "first-born," or Chief, of "every creature" (Col. 1:15). Because of this, he is the impersonation, or embodiment, of the Father's Name. Isaiah speaks of him as this Name, in ch. 30:27: "the Name of Yahweh," saith he, "cometh from far, His anger burning, and the burden heavy; His lips are full of indignation, and His tongue as a devouring fire: and His breath as an overflowing stream, shall reach to the midst of the neck, to sift the nations with the sieve of vanity." Moses styles it, "the glorious and fearful name, aith Yahweh Elohekah -- He who shall be thine Elohim, or Mighty Ones" (Deut. 28:58). Such is the Name that was written upon Jesus, when the Father "made him both Lord and Christ" (Acts 2:36). In flashing, or photographing, the power, glory, character, and very substance, of the Deity upon a body taken from among the dead, the Father's Name was written upon it; and the resurrected Jesus can now say, in every sense of the words, "I and the Father are One" -- ego kai ho pater hen esmen (John 10:30). This could not have been affirmed of him while dead. But the dead body was made to live again. It was thus restored to its former life; brought back to what it was before; and so fulfilling the word, saying, "Yahweh restoreth my soul" (Psa. 23:3). Being thus restored, he came into the position of those Paul styles, "the living who are left for the presence of the Lord;" that is, the remnant keeping the commandment of the Deity and the faith of Jesus, who are living when he comes as a thief. These, he says, "shall not sleep," or die. They are living persons such as Jesus was when restored to life; and like him, waiting for the same things to be wrought in them. The risen Jesus waited to be changed, or transformed, into what he was not on emerging from the tomb. The true believers, who hope not to die, knowing that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom, are also waiting to be changed or transformed into what they are not. The position of Jesus and this remnant is identical. He had not long to wait for his change. When it did come, it was "in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye" -- quick as a flash of lightning. This was his reviving after he rose, and by which he was made Lord and Christ. Such was the time of his transformation into "a quickening spirit;" and the operation by which the Father's Name was written, impressed, or flashed, upon him. It was his "New Name," and identical with the Father's: not another name distinct from His. When this was flashed upon him, he became "The Blessed and Only Potentate, the King of kings and Lord of lords." It is "a name which no man knows, but he himself;" that is, it declares what cannot be affirmed of any other man; namely, that He is the Invisible Eternal Power, in incorruptible and deathless manifestation, having absolute dominion in heaven and upon the earth -- The Father's Image (1 Tim. 6:15; Apoc. 19:12, 16; Matt. 28:18). But the Eternal Spirit hath invited others to a participation with Jesus in the Father's Name. "He that hath an ear," saith he, "let him hear what the Spirit saith to the ecclesias; to him that overcometh, I will write upon him the Name of my Deity, and the Name of the city of my Deity, New Jerusalem, which descended out of the heaven from my Deity, and my New Name; which no one knows saving he that receives it" (Apoc. 2:17; 3:12). This has been explained in the first volume. I quote it here to remind the reader that saints, who walk in the truth, have the promise, that this "glorious and fearful name" shall be written upon them, as it hath been already written upon their Elder Brother, the Great Captain of their salvation. The Name that shall be written has certain novelties connected with it, that entitle it to be called "New". The Name is now doctrinally sealed in the foreheads of the Deity's servants, who are also immersed into His name. As the result of the sealing they believe "the things of the kingdom of the Deity and of the Name of Jesus Christ." They have now "no more conscience of sins;" but "the answer of a good conscience towards the Deity," and the hope of a resurrection for eternal life in the kingdom. But, though they have put on the New Man, and are predestined to be conformed to the image of the Son, whatever their present spiritual conformity, they are not yet "like him" in power, glory, and substance. This is their hope, the realization of which will endow them with new qualities. Instead of being corruptible, ignominious, and weak of body, this will be changed, or transfigured, into a like form with the body of Christ's glory. In the operation of this instantaneous transfiguration, the New Name of the Spirit is written upon them; so that that which in the state of tribulation is doctrinally written in their foreheads, is incorporated into their very substance by the Divine energy that subdues everything to itself (Phil. 3:21). With this New Name of the Spirit, styled the Father's Name, the 144,000 will stand on Mount Zion. It is written upon them before they appear there. This is evident from the word gegrammenon, having been written. When was it written? Doctrinally, when sealed in their foreheads (ch. 7:3) in the great tribulation (verse 14); and corporeally, when "the dead, small and great," stand in the presence of the Deity, and are judged by what has been written, according to their works. Those who are found written in the Book of Life, receive their reward in the inscription of the New Name, which makes them like what Jesus Christ now is. All others are "cast into the lake of fire" with the Beast and False Prophet (ch. 11:18; 20:12-15; 14:9, 10). Hence the standing before the Judgment Seat of Christ (Rom. 14:10-12; 2 Cor. 5:10; Gal. 6:7, 8) precedes the standing with the Lamb on Mount Zion. The judgment of the household of Christ intervenes between the resurrection, and the ascending of Yahweh's Hill. This is evident from Psa. 24; where, in answer to the question, "Who shall go up into the Mountain of Yahweh? And who shall 'rise into' the place of his holiness?" -- it says, "The innocent of hands and the pure of heart; who hath not lifted up his soul to vanity and hath not sworn to deceit". This implies previous scrutiny. All saints who rise, but whose moral qualities, on examination, are not found in accordance with the above, shall not "rise into the place of his holiness" -- "yahkum bimkom kodsho;" which is Mount Zion. They shall not be permitted to stand there as constituents of the 144,000, who are the pure of heart, and in whose mouth no guile "had been found," heurethe. 2. The Sound of Many Waters "And I heard a sound from the heaven as a sound of many waters, and as a sound of loud thunder." "Many waters" are Apocalyptically defined as signifying "peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues." But of these there are two classes; the one class consisting of those upon which the Great Harlot sitteth; and whose body politic is symbolized by a Scarlet-colored Beast, full of Names of Blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns (ch. 17:1, 15, 3): and the other class, of the "great multitude" in the heaven, "which no man could number, out of, ek, all nations, and kindreds, and peoples, and tongues, standing before the throne, and in the presence of the Lamb, having been clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands" (ch. 7:9). The sound of the many waters cannot proceed from the heaven, unless they be first in the heaven. The many waters of the heaven are the 144,000, giving utterance to their joy. Standing on Mount Zion with the Lamb, they are "in the place of Yahweh's holiness," which is "the heaven." John does not record, in this verse, what the many waters said. It was not necessary; for he had already made the record in ch. 7:10-12. The white robed multitude, having exchanged the sword of judgment for the palm of victory, shouted with a loud voice, saying, "The salvation be ascribed to him that sitteth upon the throne of our Deity, and to the Lamb! And all the angels stood in the circle of the throne (kuklo tou thronou) and of the elders, and of the four living ones, and they fell before the throne upon their face, and worshipped the Deity, saying, Amen! The blessing and the glory, and the wisdom, and the thanksgiving, and the honor, and the power, and the might, be to our Deity for the aeons of the aeons. Amen!" The sound from the heaven was the voice of the 144,000 after they had got the victory over "the Beast," and over his "Image," and over his "sign," and over the "Number" of his Name; in other words, after they had conquered all Greek, Papal, and Protestant, Antichristendom. Their victorious attitude is indicated by their being palm-bearers -- "they had palms in their hands". "Branches of palm-trees," says Daubuz, "are the symbol of joy after victory, attended with antecedent sufferings. By the Mosaical law, Lev. 23:40, they were used as a token of joy at the Feast of Tabernacles. And they were used upon any solemn occasion of joy, as after a victory or deliverance." In John 12:13, we have an illustration of the use of palm-branches on joyous occasions. The action of the multitude then, was, unconsciously to themselves, typical of the voice of the 144,000 on Mount Zion; when they shall greet the King of Israel, in their celebration of the great Feast of Tabernacles in the kingdom of the Deity, with the hosannas of victory. In their joy, "they sing the song of Moses the servant of the Deity and the song of the Lamb, saying, 'Great and marvellous are thy works, Yahweh Ail-Shaddai; just and true are thy ways, thou King of Saints. Who shall not fear thee, O Lord, and glorify thy Name? for it only is holy: for all nations shall come and worship before thee; for thy judgments are made manifest'" (ch. 15:2-4). All nations shall come unto Jerusalem and worship before the King, Yahweh Tz'vaoth, and keep the Feast of Tabernacles; for Yahweh shall then be King over all the earth; in that day, there shall be One Yahweh and his Name one (Zech. 14:16, 9). "Palmam qui meruit ferat" -- let him who is worthy bear the palm. This is the principle upon which the palms are put into the hands of the white-robed multitude represented by the symbolic number 144,000. Having gained the victory over themselves "by the power of God through faith," and over the world's corruptions, they are accounted worthy of standing with the Lamb on Zion; and of following him in all his warlike enterprises whithersoever he may will to go, in the great work of slaying the dreadful and terrible, and blasphemous, Fourth Beast, and of destroying his Body Politic, and giving it to the burning flame (Dan. 7:11). They co-operate in this work with great zeal and rejoicing. Having fallen by thousands in the streets of Babylon, where their blood has been drunk to intoxication by her "pious," "venerable," and "reverend," monster of iniquity, when "judgment is given to them," they reward her even as she rewarded them, and double unto her twofold according to her works; in the cup which she hath filled, they fill to her double. How much she hath glorified herself and lived deliciously, so much torment and sorrow they retributively inflict upon her (Apoc. 18:6, 7). And when the work is accomplished, and done so thoroughly, that Babylon can be found no more at all, they "rejoice over her," saying, "Praise ye Yah! Salvation, and glory, and honor, and power unto the Lord our God: for true and righteous are his judgments for he hath judged the Great Harlot, who did corrupt the earth with her fornication, and hath avenged the blood of his servants at her hand. And again they said, Praise ye Yah! And the four and twenty elders, and the four living ones fell down and worshipped the Deity who sat on the throne, saying, Amen! Praise ye Yah!" Then, an approving voice responsive to this, issued from the throne occupied by David's Son and Lord, saying, "Praise our Deity, all ye his servants, and ye that fear him, both small and great." Nor does this exhortation fall upon ears "dull of hearing" what the Spirit says: for John saith, "I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, Praise ye Yah! for the Lord God the omnipotent hath prevailed. Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honor to him; for the marriage of the Lamb hath come, and his wife hath made herself ready" (Apoc. 19:1-7). I have here rendered the word ebasileuse, "prevailed," instead of "reigned." He reigns because enikese, "he has conquered;" and it is his conquest of Babylon the great multitude is celebrating. He reigns over Europe as the consequence of her destruction, in the consummation of which, "the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David conquers" to the complete opening of the Scroll, and the loosing of its Seven Seals (ch. 5:5). The sound John heard from heaven, was not only as proceeding from a great multitude; but also "as a sound of loud thunder." Thunder is the symbol of war. The "many waters" could not bear palms, and utter shouts of victory, unless previously engaged in war. Hence, their acclamations are styled "the sound of mighty thunderings;" or, as in the text, "as a sound of loud thunder." Before they could thunder forth, "Babylon hath fallen, hath fallen!" they will have to do the work of the second angel. Their shouts and acclamations are the echoes and reverberations of the thunder by which she is overthrown. The mighty thunderings of the 144,000, are not the impotent and meaningless "thundering applause" of a political meeting -- the bellowings of the ignorant and fickle multitude. They are the potent utterances those who have the proved themselves almighty in battle; and to whom are committed the Seven Thunders which proceed out of the throne; that by these effective wars, the nations may be compelled to "wait for His law" (Isa. 42:4) who sits upon the throne. The thunder is styled "loud," because it consists of more than a single clap. It is a series of booming and crashing thunderstorms, which, with the sound of the roaring hurricane, prostrate all the towering dominions of the earth. This "loud thunder" overthrows Babylon, torments the worshippers of the Beast with fire and brimstone, cuts down the harvest of the earth, and lops off the clusters of its vine. When all this is accomplished, the Dragon bound, the kingdom restored to Israel, and Jerusalem made a praise in the earth, the thronal lightnings will cease to flash, and the thunder to roll. The time will have then arrived, and not till then, for the going forth from heaven of "the sound as the sound of many waters, and as a sound of loud thunder." 3. The Harpers Harping With Their Harps "And I heard a voice of harpers harping with their harps; and they sing as it were a New Song in the presence of the throne, and in the presence of the four living ones, and of the elders; and no one was able to learn the song except the 144,000 who had been redeemed from the earth" -- Ver. 2, 3. Mount Zion is still the scene of the vision. Instrumental and vocal music gladdens the hearts and ears of the performers. As the Spirit predicted in Psa. 87:7, so it comes to pass; for "as well the singers as the players upon instruments are there." "Every one of them" has his harp; for he is himself a "harp of the Deity," and therefore an instrument of joy (Apoc. 5:8; 15:2). The harp is an instrument used in giving thanks, in rejoicing, and in praising. To "hang the harp upon the willows," indicates great tribulation and distress; as in the present state of Israel, whose "harp is turned to mourning, and their organ into the voice of them that weep." So when torment and sorrow come upon Babylon, and she is found no more, "the voice of harpers, and musicians, and of pipers and trumpeters shall be heard no more at all in her." The absence of music shows that all joy has departed from a people; while its presence indicates the reverse. A harper harping with his harp is a saint, who has been judged according to what is written, and rewarded according to his works, and thereby admitted into the glorious company of the redeemed. The first thing he does when he finds himself on the mount of Yahweh's holiness, is not to celebrate battles to be fought, and victories to be won; but to show forth the praises, the worthiness, and loving kindness of Him, who called him out from among the worshippers of the Beast, and placed him within "the Circle of the Throne." The Four Living Ones, and twenty four stephaned Elders, are all harpers who harp with their harps. This is positively affirmed in ch. 5:8. In symbolic style, put harps, and golden vials full of odors, into men's hands, and say, that "the odours are the prayers of the saints;" and it is equivalent to saying that the harps and golden vials are representative of the saints themselves. The Angels within the Circle of the Throne, although they prostrate themselves upon their faces, and in obedience to the decree in Psa. 97:7, worship David's Son and Lord; yet are they not harpers. They join with the harpers in myriads in the ascription of "worthiness to the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honor, and glory, and blessing" (ch. 5:12): but they could take no part in singing the harpers' new song which they accompanied with their harps; for they have never learned it, and were they to study it ten thousand years, could never sing it truthfully. They are the angelic audience that listens with ravished ears to the Divine melody of the new oratorio. Never will such an extraordinary choir have delighted so magnificent and dignified an assembly on the earth before. The birth of David's son was celebrated by the acclamation of a multitude of the heavenly host praising the Deity, and saying, "Glory to the Deity in the highest, over the earth peace, and good will towards men". Glorious, however, as this announcement was, the listeners to it were only a few simple shepherds; but in the approaching musical festival on Mount Zion, the performers will be not less than 144,000, immortals; who, like the Imperial President of the Festival, were once dead, but then are living for the aeons; while the listening and delighted audience, marshalled and convened by the King of glory, themselves illustrious and immortal, number "ten thousand times ten thousand and thousands of thousands" (ch. 5:11). How gratified they will be in beholding the Royal Child, whose birth they celebrated over eighteen centuries before, enthroned by the Eternal Power, according to the words of Gabriel, in his father David's seat; and instead of a vile clamor for his crucifixion, in the very place where he was condemned and put to death, songs of thanksgiving and praise, ascending in immortal strains to the Diety, from the innumerable multitude of the redeemed. 4. The New Song "No one was able to learn the song except the 144,000 who had been redeemed from the earth". The personal redemption of these thousands had been completed before they appeared on Mount Zion. They had recently emerged from the dust of death; and had passed through the ordeal of judgment; and being afterwards transformed, and made like to the King of Glory by the quickening energy of his power, they were prepared truthfully to describe themselves in a song, which no one could possibly sing, who had not been the subject of the like condition. The song they will sing on Zion is recorded in ch. 5:9. In this place, it says, "They sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the scroll, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain; and hast redeemed us for the Deity by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; and hast made us (the Four Living Ones full of eyes, and the twenty four elders) for our Deity kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth." The Angels cannot sing this song. How could they address Jesus, and say to him, "thou hast redeemed us?" Neither can they sing, that they shall "reign upon the earth," for they assuredly never will. Nor can any of the worshippers of the Beast sing this song; for they do not belong to the whiterobed multitude, whose garments are whitened in the blood of the Lamb: on the contrary, they are those whose names are not written in his scroll of life from the foundation of the world; and are robed in a scarlet colored vesture, dyed red in the blood of the saints. None such can "learn that song." They have not been taught it by the Father, who hath given them over to their strong delusions. "No man cometh unto Me," saith Jesus, "except the Father who hath sent me draw him; and I will raise him up at the last day. It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of the Deity. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me" (John 6:44). These can learn the song; for the Father teaches it to all His true disciples, when He writes His new name upon them; and they sing it, when He plays upon them as His harps. "The dead know not any thing; and there is no knowledge in the grave" (Ecc. 9:5, 10). Whence, then, can the 144,000 harps give forth the melody and sentiment of the song, but from the Eternal Spirit who "brings all things to their remembrance;" and this he does in writing the Father's Name in their foreheads. After he has developed them corporeally from the dust, he flashes upon them the knowledge of a previous state, together with the knowledge of what shall be hereafter. Thus they are taught and made conscious of a previous existence. But for the operation of the Eternal Spirit in writing his name upon their new cerebral organization, they would have no more consciousness of the past, or of any antecedents therein, than Adam when he first opened his eyes upon the light. Unless the Spirit impress upon them the knowledge, they would be conscious only of what present sensation could impart -- of this, and no more. Take, for example, a man, and call him Paul. Let him be the same Paul of whom we read in the Acts. Let him die, and become what he is (if we may say "he is," of one who has no existence). Of what was once called Paul there remains a few pounds of dust. And this is all that remains of the 144,000 not at present alive upon the earth. Hence, individually or personally they are all nonentities. Dust, though once a component of intelligent beings, retains no knowledge. "Can the dust praise thee can it declare thy truth?" There is no profit in dust for praise or truth, apart from the operation of the Eternal Spirit. It retains no trace of former personal identity. From the few pounds of dust left to Paul the Creator could form a Lion. When he had given the creature life, would it have the consciousness of the apostle? Would it be able to sing the song of redemption? If personal identity resided in the dust as dust, it might; but the supposition is absurd: Of men, it is said, "the Deity remembereth that they are but flesh, a wind that passeth away, and cometh not again". Where is the personal identity when flesh has thus passed away? All personality is dissolved. The mere natural man perceives the difficulty; and has therefore invented the clumsy theory of inherent immortality for the perpetuation of personal identity in a future state. He differs from the Spirit, and believes, that the dead know more than the living; and that they are now singing the song of redemption before the throne! But the Scripture shows clearly, that man has no immortal consciousness; and that if he do not understand the truth, he is as the beasts that perish (Psa. 49:12, 20). What provision, then, has been provided by the Creator for the reproduction of the non-existent Paul and his companions in nothingness? The creation of 144,000 (not less, but numberless more) living bodies from the dust; and stamping upon their foreheads, as with a seal, what is already on record, not in the memory of disembodied souls, but in the mind of the Eternal Father. This is where the personal consciousness of the past comes from, the Father's Name written in the forehead, not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God in fleshy tables of the heart (2 Cor. 3:3): so that whosoever is so written upon after creation from dust, is, in the creative operation, taught to sing the song of redemption by inspiration. The apostles who listened to the discourses of Jesus remembered little, and understood less; but the Eternal Spirit, who discoursed through Jesus, remedied this defect by afterwards bringing all things to their remembrance, opening their understandings and guiding them into all the truth (Luke 24:45; John 14:26; 16:13). In this operation, their consciousness of what Jesus really taught, was stamped or written upon the fleshy tablets of their hearts. What they had forgotten and did not understand, was not lost. It was retained in the Spirit's, in the Father's own mind, Who afterwards photographed in their foreheads what he had said. Suppose the apostles had all died with Jesus, and, like him, while dead, came to know nothing; and suppose after being dead, they were brought to life on the third day, where was their remembrance of all things to come from? When people fall into a trance they forget every thing, even the letters of the alphabet; and have to recover knowledge by the slow process of ordinary tuition. How total and complete, then, must be the oblivion of death; and how impossible the consciousness of the past, unless He who restores to life, also restamp or rewrite the "New Man," or "New Creature," formed by the Word in the old body of the present state, upon the new body of the future. And this He does; not by causing the newly created being to pass through the experience of the past again; but, by an instantaneous transfer of what exists in His own mind to theirs. Eighteen hundred years ago, the Father-Spirit said, I am the way, the truth, the resurrection, and the life. He affirms this of Himself. The truth in a man by faith, is Christ in him. When the man dies the truth and its personal developments remain with the Father, while the man, as flesh, is "a wind that passeth away, and cometh not again". But, though it cometh not again, the truth in its particular personal identity, whether called by the name Paul, or any other name, does come again. The Father being the resurrection as well as the truth, reproduces from Himself the personally developed truth, named Paul in a former state. He reproduces it in a newly created body. In view of the statement affirmed by John the Baptizer, it is immaterial whether that body be made of the dust to which Paul is reduced, or of some other crude matter; for, if of stones the Deity can raise up children to Abraham (Matt. 3:9) He can as easily reproduce Paul from one kind of material as another. Paul sleeps "in God the Father and in the Lord Jesus Christ". In this sense, he may be said to be "with Christ" even now. He sleeps in Christ the Resurrection -- in Christ the Sun of Righteousness. When this Sun shines forth with healing in his beams, Paul and the 144,000 will be the embodied emanations of these beams. They will be hoi basileis ton apo anatolon heliou -- the Kings which (are) risings from a Sun (Apoc. 16:12). They no longer sleep. Every individual is a rising -- the reproduction of a former character in a new body; the character, and not the body, constituting the personal identity. The body is of the earth, the writing upon it, from heaven. In the finishing of this, the body is transfigured in the twinkling of an eye; and from an earthy body, it is changed into the likeness of the Quickening Spirit, by which the redemption celebrated in the song is made complete. Here is the acquisition of knowledge in the same way as the apostles acquired the power, or faculty, of setting forth the wonderful works of Deity in languages they knew nothing about. It will be a Pentecostian display of omnipotence -- 144,000 "first fruits unto the Deity and the Lamb" newly created from the dust, singing the song of their redemption from the earth. They sing the song thus "learned" before their conflict with the Beast and his Image. This is intimated by the prophetic declaration "We shall reign on the earth." This they cannot do so long as the Beast of the Earth is unsubdued. Their reign as "kings and priests" is incompatible with the existence or ascendancy of the Latin Kingdom. If in the song they sing, they said, we do reign upon the earth, we should know that the scene on Mount Zion was not Pentecostian, and inaugural; but palm-bearing and victorious. As conquerors of the nations, they stand upon the crystal-sea before the throne, and sing the song of Moses and the Lamb (ch. 4:6; 15:2). They will then have subdued their enemies. But, on Mount Zion is their induction into office with fight royal solemnity, preparatory to their executing the judgments assigned to the second and third angels, the reaping of the harvest and the treading of the wine-press. 5. The Character of the 144,000 Firstfruits "These are they who had not been contaminated with women; for they are virgins. These are the attendants upon the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These had been redeemed from among men, an offering of firstfruits for the Deity and for the Lamb. And in their mouth had been found no guile; for they are faultless in the presence of the throne of the Deity". With what class of women had they not been defiled or contaminated? It must be remembered that amongst these 144,000 will be many women, perhaps one half the number of the redeemed. It cannot be, therefore, in a natural sense, that they were not so defiled. The whole company of the redeemed, men and women, are "virgins"; for they constitute the Lamb's gune, woman, or wife; whom Paul was solicitous, as far as he had to do with the presentation, to "present as a chaste virgin to Christ" (2 Cor. 11:2; Eph. 5:27). In what sense, then, is this chaste virgin company undefiled with women? Who are these women? The only answer that can be given to this question is that they are the women of the Apocalypse. The worst kind of women -- the Harlot daughters and Harlot Abominations of the Great Drunken Murderess, whom they style "the Mother of All Churches." The "Holy Apostolic Catholic Church", is the Harlot in chief; "with whom the kings of the earth," the Secular Rulers of European and American Antichristendom, "have committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth have been made drunk with the wine of her fornication". This is the Mother of the Harlot Family. Her daughters are the Churches of Europe "by law established;" such as, the Lutheran Harlot, the Anglo-Hibernian Harlot, the Caledonian Harlot, and the Helvetian Harlot; all of them, bearing "the Sign of the Beast," indicating their utter destitution of the faith and its obedience. Besides these principal harlots, is an innumerable fry of Harlot abominations, all of them distinguished as the relations of the Roman Mother by the livery they wear. The sign of the Beast is upon them all. In the aggregate, they are an unbaptized ecclesiastical community, distinguished in its subdivisions by various "names," Apocalyptically styled, "Names of Blasphemy," of which the Scarlet-colored dominion is said to be "full". These are styled by the sprinkled worshippers of the Beast, "the Names and Denominations of Christendom;" but the Apocalyptic title is the true one -- "All the Abominations of the Earth," of which the Roman Harlot is the Mother. For what is Lutheranism, but German Latinism diluted with the unscriptural speculations of an Augustinian monk? Or Calvinism, but Swiss, French, Dutch, English and Scotch Latinism, diluted with the traditions of the man who caused Servetus to be burned? These dilutions of the Latin superstition have been very useful in crippling the absolutism of the Romish Hierarchy. The world has been greatly benefited by the Protestant Rebellion; and by the multiplication and rivalries of the sects. But, though promotive of civil and religious liberty, their dogmas are God-dishonoring and gospel-nullifying blasphemies. Added to these are other "names," which, though repudiating baby-sprinkling and practising immersion, are as much worshippers of the Beast as the rest. These immersed sects recognize the sprinkled sects as denominations of christians, showing that they do not know, or do not believe, what the Scriptures teach as the one faith and one hope of the calling. Now, in prophetic style, all these sects of the Court of the Gentiles are termed "women," whose favors lead to death. They are strange women, who flatter with their words; whose houses incline unto death, and their paths unto the dead. Their lips drop as a honeycomb, and their mouths are smoother than oil; but their end is bitter as wormwood, sharp as a two-edged sword. Their feet go down to death; and their steps take hold on Sheol. The 144,000 have no fellowship with these unchaste women. Having come to the understanding and belief of "the things concerning the kingdom of the Deity, and the name of Jesus Christ," they have obeyed the invitation. "Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues". Having faith to be healed, they obey the Apostolic command, "repent and be every one of you immersed for the name of Jesus Christ into remission of sins" (Acts 2:38). By this process, they are separated from the worshippers of the Beast, and washed, sanctified, and justified from all the defilement contracted in their days of ignorance and unbelief (1 Cor. 6:9-11). Thenceforth, they are no more to be found dangling and toying with these disreputable Mistresses of the Clergy. Being espoused to Christ, they have no more spiritual association with the impure; but, as wise virgins, keep their lamps trimmed, and their lights burning, that when the Bridegroom appears, they may be admitted to "the marriage supper of the Lamb." When seen on Mount Zion their redemption had been perfected. "These had been redeemed, egorasthesan, from among men". If the redemption had not been complete, they could not have sung the song of redemption. The price paid for their redemption was the blood of the Lamb, by which they are constituted aparche, "an offering of firstfruits" for Deity and for the Lamb. Under the Law of Moses, the firstfruits were the New Fruits of the harvest of the land, offered in the form of Two Loaves, called "the Bread of the Firstfruits," fifty days after the waving of a single sheaf of the firstfruits on the third day after the Passover. In the antitype, Jesus risen from among the dead, is "the wave-sheaf of the firstfruits; and the New Converts to the faith preached by the apostles, "The Bread of the Firstfruits". Of this there is evidence in 1 Cor. 15:20, where Paul says, "Christ is risen from among the dead, and become the firstfruits of them who have been sleeping;" and in James 1:18, addressing the true believers of his day, he says, "Of his own will the Father of Lights begat us by the word of truth, that we should be a kind of Firstfruits of his creatures." By this we are informed, that all who are truly begotten by the Word of Truth are designed to be what Jesus became in being waved before the Father after leaving the house of the dead. The Word of Truth, or the Gospel, illuminates the understanding; so that when the enlightened are immersed into "Christ the Firstfruits," they are planted in the likeness of his death, in hope that they shall also be planted in the likeness of his resurrection; or become "firstfruits for the Deity and the Lamb" -- "the Bread of the Firstfruits," which can only be offered in the land promised to the Fathers, as indicated in the type (Lev. 23:9-21); and symbolically represented in this chapter of the Apocalypse. In the type, the Pentecostian Firstfruits were waved in the form of Two Loaves, made from the fine flour of the new grain, and baked with leaven. This represented that the firstfruits would be taken from two classes leavened with the Truth -- a loaf of the circumcision and a loaf of the uncircumcision; two loaves, but only one bread. This work began on the day of Pentecost, fifty days after the resurrection of Jesus, on "the morrow of the Sabbath," which he spent in the tomb. Three thousand were then leavened with the Gospel of the Kingdom, to which they became obedient. These were of the circumcision. After this many more thousand Jews became obedient to the faith. The invitation to God's Kingdom and Glory was then extended to people of other nations, beginning at the household of Cornelius. Since then, a people for the Father's Name has been collecting, as they sing, "out of every kindred, and tongue, and people and nation." The work is still progressing, but after such a manner as to show that there is little more can be done. The Jewish and Gentile Loaves are almost complete; and little remains, but for the High Priest after the order of Melchizedec to come, and make a Pentecostian wave-offering of them before the Father on the mountain of his holiness. When this is accomplished, a company of undefiled ones will have been developed, all of them like himself -- Firstfruits, in whose mouth exists no guile, being faultless before the throne of God. Thus qualified and thus prepared, the honor and glory are conferred upon them of being "the attendants upon the Lamb whithersoever he goes". And here it must be remembered, that the Lamb is a symbol "having Seven Horns and Seven Eyes, which are the Seven Spirits of the Deity sent forth into all the earth" -- the symbol of almighty and omniscient power, which goes in aid of the operations of the 144,000. In judgment being given to Jesus and his Brethren, "the Saints of the Most High" (Dan. 7:22) almighty power is given to them to execute it. In ch. 14:13, this power is styled "the Spirit". Whithersoever the Spirit goes in all the earth to "execute the judgments written," they are hoi akolouthountes, the attendants upon him, as soldiers attend upon the Commander-in-Chief. The Spirit energizing the 144,000 makes them almighty. Whither the Spirit is to go in taking the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven, they go; and turn not when they go: and when they go the noise of their wings is like the noise of great waters, as the Voice of the Almighty, the voice of speech, as the noise of a host (Ezek. 1:12, 20-24; Dan. 7:27). The mission of the Spirit is not confined to Europe; but extends "to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people;" to all of whom judgment is to go forth, that they may be taught to "Fear the Deity, and to give glory to Him". No power but that of the Spirit in terrible judicial manifestation can do this. "When the judgments of Yahweh are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness". This is the only argument man can comprehend. The world attributes mild measures to weakness and fear; and so long as it thinks principles and precepts cannot be enforced it treats them only with contempt: for "let favor be showed to the wicked yet will he not learn righteousness". Hence, the necessity of the Divine arrangement which gives omnipotence to the righteous, and sends them forth to subdue all things to the will of Him who makes them invincible (Isa. 26:9, 10). The Lamb-Power invades the territories of the Beast and his Image: for their worshippers are said to be tormented in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb; hence, as the 144,000 are his attendants, they are there also (verse 9, 10). This is, if possible, still more evident from ch. 17:14, 12; and 19:19; where the Beast and kings of the earth and their armies gather together to make war against the Lamb, and against his army, which is marshalled by "the called, the chosen, and faithful" 144,000, with him. The conflict, however terrible, is not doubtful. The Seven-Horned Lamb overcomes them in spite of all their improvements in artillery and the art of war; for he is the Almighty King of kings and Lord of lords, who smites the nations with the sword of his mouth, and rules them with a rod of iron. They can drive three hundred pound shot through iron armor-plates several inches thick; and discharge with great rapidity breech-loading rifles; but this outside force is not almighty. The shadow of the Spirit's power has greater resistance than armor plates of the greatest thickness. Cannon balls and rifle shot cannot penetrate it; while he can crumble into dust without a blow defences of the hardest steel. The 144,000 firstfruits are themselves "spirit", on the principle laid down by Jesus, that that is spirit which is born of the Spirit. Being spirit, they are in the shadow of the Spirit's power -- a polished shaft in His quiver, like the great Captain of their salvation. No projectile can reach them to hurt them. A storm of rifle bullets will fall before them like paper pellets from walls of granite. The artillery of the Beast's armies being thus rendered powerless, they have no defence against the tormenting fire and brimstone of the 144,000 of the Lamb. The Beast and deceiving False Prophet become captives; and those who sustained them by the sword, are made a sacrifice of with great slaughter (ch. 13:10) in the great Day of Retribution, when the Seven-Horned Lamb, with his invincible attendants, shall go forth into all the earth. 6. The Angel-Proclamation in Midheaven "And I saw another angel flying in midheaven, having aionian good news to proclaim to those who dwell upon the earth, even every nation, and tribe, and tongue, and people, saying with a loud voice, Fear the Deity, and give to him glory; for the Hour of his judgment hath arrived; and do homage to him who made the heaven, and the earth and sea and fountains of waters". Under the Mosaic Law, which is "the pattern of the things in the heavens," the Pentecostian Feast of Firstfruits of the third month was succeeded in the first day of the seventh month by the Memorial of the blowing of trumpets, a Sabbath of holy convocation -- inviting to a holy rest and assembly. Between this Memorial and the offering of "an offering made by fire unto Yahweh," was an interval of ten days. This tenth day of the seventh month was yom hakkiphpurim, a Day of Coverings -- a day on which the sins of the past were being covered over by fiery expiation. In the English Version this is styled the Day of Atonement. But before this day of affliction, in which all who did not afflict themselves on account of their transgressions, were to be cut off from Yahweh's people, the trumpets blew a memorial blast, to remind the people that the hour, or month, of the annual judgment and covering of sins had arrived. The Sons of Aaron, the priests, were appointed to blow the trumpets in the day of their gladness, in their solemn days, over their burnt offerings, and over the sacrifices of their peace offerings (Lev. 23:24; Num. 10:8, 10). The antitype of this arrangement is found in this fourteenth chapter -- the Pentecost is celebrated in the inauguration of the Deity's kings and priests on Mount Zion -- the Bread of the Firstfruits. Then comes the memorial proclamation through midheaven by these priests of the Deity, reminding the world that the hour of judicial retribution so long threatened has arrived; and inviting men to afflict their souls, in turning from their iniquities, to the reverential fear and worship of Him who made all things. When this proclamation has been made to the end of the world, the Jubilee Blast of the Day of Coverings, on the tenth day of the seventh month, is then blown -- a Jubilee to Israel, proclaiming their return to their country, and consequent avengement upon all their enemies, who worship the Beast and his Image, and receive his sign in their foreheads, or in their hands. This is "the Day of Vengeance in the heart" of the Lamb, contemporary with "the Year of his redeemed" (Isa. 63:4); the works of which are detailed in Apoc. 14:8-11, 14-20; 16:16-21; 17:14; 18; 19:1-3, 11-21; 20:1-4, 14. The Angel who makes the memorial proclamation is symbolical of the royal priests of the Melchizedec Household. The Mosaic type required that the silver trumpets be blown by priests of the High Priest's family. But the priesthood being changed the Aaronic priests are ineligible for the sounding of this proclamation in midheaven. Hence, the priestly trumpeters have to be provided from another source; and there is no other source of supply but the saints and faithful in Christ Jesus, whom he has made kings and priests for the Deity. The proclamation is therefore made by as many of the 144,000 as the work to be performed may demand. Among these will be the apostle John, as the representative of a class. In the tenth chapter he tells us that after he had digested the little scroll of judgment, the Spirit told him that he "must prophesy again before many peoples and nations and tongues, and kings". To do this he must rise from the dead, be judged, and quickened, when he will be fitted for the work. But it is too much for one man to accomplish in the short space allotted for the proclamation. Others of like qualifications will therefore be associated with him in the work; so that it may be carded on in different countries at the same time. The apostles had their colaboring attendants and subordinates when they sounded the gospel trumpet in old time. In the new proclamation the same condition may obtain. Be this as it may, it is "those that escape," or the saved remnant, that are sent, as sounders of the Truth, to the nations that have not heard the fame nor seen the glory of Yahweh; and they shall declare His glory to the Gentiles (Isa. 66:19). This is the plurality represented by the Angel -- one messenger emblematic of a multitude; as it is written in Psa. 68:11, "Adonai will give the word; those who bear the tidings are a great host." The proclamation is to be made through "midheaven." This is "the Air" into which the judgments of the Seventh Vial are to be poured after the proclamation of the message, or word given, is finished. It is the political aerial of Babylon the Great, which, instead of being as now the highest heaven of the political world, will occupy a middle station between the worshippers of the Beast, and the new throne established on Mount Zion. The Midheaven is the political firmament occupied by all the ranks, orders, and degrees, of the world rulers -- the supreme and subordinate governors of those "many people, nations, and tongues" before whom John is to prophesy again. This will be an exceedingly interesting time when the clergy of all orders, "the spirituals of wickedness in the heavenlies," shall be confronted by the apostles and saints, and proved to be liars and impostors before the world. And richly do they deserve to be exposed to this "shame and contempt". They will no longer be permitted to deceive the hearts of the simple with good words and fair speeches with impunity. The sheep's clothing will be stripped off them, and the wolf undisguised will be revealed. High and pompous ecclesiastical titles will then be at a discount; and regarded only by those who come to obey the proclamation, as the tinsel bespanglement of vain and foolish men. The occupation of the clerical False Prophet of the world will be gone; for the loftiness of man shall be bowed down, and the haughtiness of men shall be made low; and Yahweh alone will come to be exalted in that day (Isaiah 2:17). The situation is illustrated by 1 Chron. 21:16, where it is stated that David saw the Angel of Yahweh standing between the earth and the heaven -- in midheaven, having a drawn sword in his hand stretched out, as he was just going to afflict Jerusalem with an impending judicial visitation. His position there was exhibited to David, that he might have time and occasion for obtaining the deliverance of the city from the wrath to come; so that the hovering of the Angel was to show, that there was room for escape on terms to be proposed, just as the Deity was going to inflict the punishment. So with the great host in midheaven on their proclamation of the good news. The destruction of Babylon, and the overthrow of the governments of the world, are decreed. Nothing can save them from abrogation and obliteration. The proclamation invites mankind to abandon these spiritual and temporal institutions, in commanding them to "Fear the Deity, and give glory to Him". It affords them time and opportunity for saving themselves from the impending calamities of the Hour of Divine judgment. If any transfer their allegiance from their clerical and civil rulers to the Lamb-Power, they will doubtless be exempted from the fire and brimstone torment, which is to destroy the Beast and his False Prophet (ch. 19:20; 14:9, 10): but if they refuse to abjure these authorities, the plagues written in this prophecy for their destruction will assuredly consume the rebellious. The reader will not confound this angel flying through midheaven with that said also to fly through midheaven in ch. 8:13. The difference in their proclamations indicates a difference in the time, agents, and circumstances of the two. The proclamation of ch. 8 preceded the sounding of the fifth trumpet; and was made by those who were able to discern the signs of the times in which they lived; while that in the fourteenth is made by agents represented by John after their resurrection and inauguration as kings and priests for the Deity. There was only superlative "woe" proclaimed in the first; but in this remembrance of the Hour of Judgment, there is also an announcement of good news. This good news is styled aionion, a word which I have not translated but only transferred. The Angel-Host has "aionian good news to proclaim". It is styled aionian, I conceive, because it announces "things not seen" pertaining to the aion, or course, during which all nations will be "blessed in Abraham and his Seed." This course is not to last for ever, but for a thousand years, styled in Dan. 7:12, "a season and a time". At the end of this Course of Centuries, the nations revolt, and judgment comes upon them to extermination (ch. 20:9). For this reason I do not translate the word in this text "everlasting," as in the English Version. The proclamation is the announcement of Millennial Good News; namely, that the resurrection, immortalization, and inauguration, of the called, and chosen, and faithful firstfruits, have been accomplished by Jesus Christ; who, having returned in power and great glory, has set up the ancient throne of his father David on Mount Zion: that being established there, he invites the allegiance of all nations to himself, as King of the whole earth by the grace of his Eternal Father; who has appointed him to execute judgment and justice in the earth, and to rule the world in righteousness: that he is prepared to destroy the powers that corrupt and oppress the nations; and to wipe away tears from off all faces, and to take away the rebuke of his people, Israel, from off all the earth. That his purpose is to change the face of the world; and to enlighten mankind with the true knowledge from the rising to the setting sun. That, as mankind have been for a long series of ages in the bottomless abyss of ignorance and superstition, in commiseration of their helplessness, he invites them to hearken diligently unto him; and to come and buy wine and milk of him, without money and without price. That, if they will accept this invitation to the feast he has prepared for all peoples, they shall live under their own vines and fig-trees in peace, and none shall make them afraid. But if on the contrary, they determine still to worship the Beast and his Image, and to receive the Sign in their foreheads, or in their hands, then they shall be made to drink of the wine of the wrath of the Deity which hath been prepared without mixture in the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy Angels, and in the presence of the Lamb. A proclamation of this kind, made by such "ambassadors of Jesus Christ," and attested by signs and wonders of a character to establish their claims to the confidence and respect of the nations and their rulers, cannot fail of arresting attention as the all-absorbing topic of the day. The message itself, and the reception it meets with by the world-rulers of church and state, will doubtless eclipse and supersede all other news. The "leading journals" of Europe and America will be confounded; and seeing that the editorial staff of the world, like, "the spirituals" of the clerical kingdom, have no oil in their vessels, their leading articles upon this wonderful topic can only be the reflex of the darkness that covers the earth, and the gross darkness of the people. As folly and falsehood are their stock in trade, they will doubtless counsel rejection of the message, and hostility to all claims emanating from such questionable authority. As they live by trying to please the majority, they will trim their sails to catch the popular breeze. Their counsel will be a bridle in the jaws of the people causing them to err. The editors, the clergy, and the civil rulers, of the midheaven will be the ruin of society: so that under the guidance of their policy the armies of the nations will go forth as a whirlwind to scatter him (Hab. 3:14). It is not in human nature, much less in its political organization, to surrender power, wealth, and honor, at discretion. It does not part with these things without a struggle to retain them. On such a proclamation coming to the pope and "crowned heads" of Europe, from a Jew on Mount Zion, claiming to be Jesus of Nazareth King of the Jews, are they like to acknowledge him, to place their kingdoms at his disposal, and cast their crowns at his feet? We know certainly that they will not; for it is testified that all nations shall compass him about like bees; but they shall be quenched as the fire of thorns; for in the name of Yahweh he will destroy them (Psa. 118:10-12; Apoc. 19:19-21). Seeing that it is the purpose of the Deity to give the nations to Jesus and his Brethren for an inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for their possession (Psa. 2:6-8; Apoc. 2:26) the proclamation, or prophesying again, to kings and nations, in the words, "Fear the Deity, and give honor to him," implies the surrender of all wealth, dominion, honor, and power under the whole heaven to them. Will the peoples of the American Continent be willing to do this; especially in view of the fact, that no unrighteous man will be permitted to hold the meanest office under their supremacy? What will they do with "the Monroe doctrine" then? Is the King of Israel to be interdicted from annexing Canada, Mexico, and the so-called United States to his dominions? Will he regard the screams of the American Eagle, or the roar of the British Lion? Not a whit. What are these powers to him before whom a fire goes, and burns up his enemies: whose lightnings enlighten the world! At whose presence the earth trembles, and the hills thereof melt like wax! Now as to the precise time after Christ's advent, and the justification of his household by Spirit, in which this proclamation through midheaven shall be made, it may be remarked, that it is immediately consequent upon the smiting of the Assyro-Gogian image upon the feet by the Stone-Power, and before the grinding of its metallic and clay fragments to powder (Dan. 2:34, 35; Matt. 21:44). It will therefore be in the interval between the Armageddon overthrow of the Sixth Vial, and the outpouring of Divine wrath upon "the Air" of the Seventh. This interval will be the period of this remarkable angel-proclamation. The Armageddon discomfiture of the belligerents in the land of Israel; that is, of the Lion-power of Sheba, Dedan and Tarshish, and of its antagonist the Assyro-Gogian confederacy of the North, at Bozrah and elsewhere (Ezek. 38:13, 18-23; Isa. 63:1; Dan. 11:41-45) -- will put Yahweh Tz'vaoth in possession of Jerusalem the Holy City, which he occupies as the Lamb with the 144,000. Standing thus upon Mount Zion, the Eternal Spirit, in multitudinous manifestation, is "in His dwelling place without fear, as dry heat impending lightning, as a cloud of dew in the heat of harvest" (Isa. 18:4). He is "still" as the calm and sultry atmosphere which precedes the tempest; and stands as the uplifted ensign upon the mountains (Isa. 11:10, 12); ready for the manifestation of those terrible judgments in the earth under the outpouring of which "the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness" (Isa. 26:9). In this still dry heat of impending vengeance, the Pentecostian proclamation of liberty and return is made; after which "the great trumpet is blown" by Yahweh Tz'vaoth (Isa. 18:3; 27:13; Zech. 9:14); the Jubilee Trumpet of the judgment of the great day. The angel-proclamation in midheaven is this Pentecostian proclamation briefly preceding the Jubilee Trumpet of "the Day of Atonement," when the Eternal Spirit casts up accounts with the nations, and exacts from them the settlement that is due. The proclamation in midheaven is Pentecostian, not judicial and vengeful. It announces the approach of judgment as impending, not in actual manifestation; and therefore invites return to God as the condition of liberty, or escape from the wrath to come. As to how long the period of proclamation will continue, it is not possible to speak with certainty. The work to be done indicates that it will not be an instantaneous operation. It is a work of "prophesying before many peoples and nations, and tongues, and kings." This will take time, and possibly years. The Deity is never in a hurry, but deliberate, effective, sure. We need not be surprised if ten years were consumed in the proclamation and the development of its results. Between the "memorial of blowing of trumpets" on the first day of the seventh month, and the Day of Atonement, there was an interval of ten days; after this pattern it may, therefore, be, that between the beginning of the proclamation in midheaven and the commencement of the Second Angel judgment upon Babylon (ch. 14:3), there will be an interval of ten years. This would leave an "Hour," or month of years, that is, thirty years, for the judgment to sit in slaying the fourth beast of Daniel, and destroying his body-politic in the burning flame (ch. 7:11). These forty years after the manifestation of the Son of David and his mighty ones on Mount Zion, are the period of "the building again of the tabernacle of David, and of the setting up of its ruins, as it was in the days of old (Acts 15:16; Amos 9:11) the exodal period of the gathering together under one king of all the tribes of the House of Jacob (Mic. 7:15). These forty years will be the most important and terrible of the world's history. They are the period of the world's transition from what it calls "self-government," to the government of Christ and his Brethren. The most noteworthy developments of this transition period are depicted in the fourteenth, part of the sixteenth and seventeenth, the eighteenth, nineteenth, and part of the twentieth chapters of the Apocalypse. They exhibit the setting up of the Kingdom of David by the Eloahh of the Heavens (Dan. 2:44): by which the kingdom is restored again to Israel (Acts 1:6). The work of these forty years was foreshadowed in the reign of David. His forty years' reign was to that of Solomon's peaceful administration over Israel and the Gentiles, as a judicial preparation; for before he could "reign over all kingdoms from the river unto the land of the Philistines, and unto the border of Egypt," these kingdoms had to be subdued by his father David. After the same pattern it will be with the greater than Solomon. Forty years of judgment are consumed in preparing the millennial reign of peace and righteousness; which, as the chapters indicated show, will not be introduced and established by clerical preaching, nor by "the benevolent institutions of the day," but by "judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries". Solomon reigned over the whole twelve tribes from the decease of his father and predecessor. This, however, was not the case with David from the death of Saul. Solomon and David were types of the Christ, who was to descend from them after the flesh, in respect of his career as a hero and conqueror, and the Prince of Peace. "Yahweh", says Moses, "is a Man of war; Yahweh is His name" (Exod. 15:3). David's career was illustrative of that of the Man Yahweh, styled by Paul, "the Man Christ Jesus," as the founder of the reign of peace. Hence, as David reigned several years over Judah before he became the recognized sovereign of the whole nation; it behoves that his Son and Lord reign as King of Judah before he become monarch of all the tribes of Israel and kingdoms of the earth. This typical indication is sustained by the testimony in Zech. 12:7, that "Yahweh shall save the tents of Judah first, that the glory of the house of David, and the glory of the inhabitants of Jerusalem do not magnify themselves against Judah." The victory of Bozrah will be fatal to Gentile supremacy in the land of Israel. In the day of this discomfiture its invaders will be beaten off by Yahweh from the channel of the river (Euphrates) unto the stream of Egypt (the Nile); after which he will gather them one by one from Assyria and Egypt to worship him in Jerusalem (Isa. 27:12, 13). This gathering of Israelites of the tribe of Judah, "one of a city and two of a family" (Jer. 3:14) to Zion, will result from the angel-proclamation in midheaven. Being fed by pastors according to Yahweh's own heart with knowledge and understanding, the veil will be removed from the minds of many, who will become willing (Psa. 110:3) to emigrate from among the nations and return to their fatherland. Yahweh, the Man of War, will bring them there -- "I will bring you," saith He, "to Zion". He will do this by the influence of his victorious power. Having expelled the Anglo-Indian Lion from the land, that power will probably receive with reverence the angel-proclamation, and consent to place its marine at the disposal of "the Man Christ Jesus," styled in the English Version "the Lord of hosts". This, indeed, will certainly be the case. He will command the ships of Tarshish, and they will obey; for what is testified they do, is done in obedience to his will. The last chapter of Isaiah and the nineteenth verse, testifies of the angel-proclamation to Tarshish, and the next verse records the result. The "sounders of the truth" are effective bowmen. Their words move the nations of Tarshish, Pul, Lud, Tubal and Javan, to do the will of Yahweh, and to bring His people as an offering to Him in Jerusalem. Thus they "fly as a cloud, and as doves to their windows," in the fleet ships of Tarshish, which convey the sons of Zion from far with their silver and gold, to the place where the Name of Yahweh is enthroned (Isa. 60:8, 9; 18; Jer. 3:17). Thus the Angel-proclamation recruits the population of the little kingdom of Judah, which, in its beginning, is smaller than the little kingdom of Greece (Matt. 13:31, 32). During this decade, the settlers in the midst of the land are "at rest, dwelling safely without walls, and having neither bars nor gates" (Ezek. 38:11, 12); and are in league with the wide-shadowing land beyond the rivers of Khush -- "Sheba, Dedan, and the Merchants of Tarshish" -- which holds a similar relation to the kingdom of Judah under the "greater than Solomon," that Tyre did in the days of Hiram to the kingdom of David's Son. The peoples of the British Isles afar off from Jerusalem, having accepted the proclamation, the government will have been transferred from the hands of sinners such as now possess it, to the Saints; so that the constitutition of the United Kingdom will be no longer the old British, but "the law which goes forth from Zion" (Isa. 2:3). This will account for the harmony and concert of action between Israel and Britain in the latter days. But a like result does not obtain in relation to all the powers to which the proclamation is addressed. Matthew 25:32 shows the separation of the nations into two classes in the day when the Son of Man shall come in his glory. This separation results from the conclusions at which they arrive with respect to the subject-matter of the proclamation. One class rejects the Aionian Good News, and refuses to fear Him who claims to be the God, or "Elohim of the whole earth" (Isa. 54:5), to give glory to him, and to do him homage. The other class of nations comes to an opposite decision, and without further controversy "wait for His law" (Isa. 42:4). Thus the proclamation in midheaven becomes the occasion of the division of the nations into sheep-nations and goat-nations. Of the latter class will certainly be those comprehended in the bodies politic symbolized by the Ten Horns, the Beast, the False Prophet, and the Dragon. I say certainly, for they are all represented Apocalyptically in actual warfare with the Lamb-Power. Thus, in ch. 17:14, the ten horns are said to make war with the Lamb; and in ch. 19:19-21, the Beast and the Kings of the Earth and their armies, oppose themselves in sanguinary conflict against him and his forces; the False Prophet goes into perdition with the Beast; and the Dragon is chained in the abyss (ch. 20:2, 3), These are symbolical of the goat-nations of Belgium, France, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Greece, Switzerland, Hungary, Austria, Germany, and Russia. Ere this, Turkey will have been "dried up," and Holland, Denmark and Sweden, probably annexed to Germany or Russia, as part of the confederacy of Gog. The sheep-nations will be separated from all these as the allies of the Shepherd of Israel. These he sets on his right hand with the lost sheep of the flock of Judah, which, as a repentant prodigal, will be returning to "the Great Shepherd of the Sheep." All of this fold he feeds, and gathers, and carries, and gently leads (Isa. 40:2), because they have become joined to him by faith, and are blessed in and with Abraham, his friend (Zech. 2:11; Gal. 3:8, 9). But the Holy One of Israel is not the Shepherd of the Goats. Their shepherd is the False Prophet of the Catholic world, who claims to be "the God of the Earth", successor of St. Peter, and Vicar of Jesus Christ. This Shepherd of the Goats is the lawless antagonist of the Great Shepherd of the Sheep; and will be found stirring the goats up to the rejection of the angel-proclamation and to the declaration of war against the Chief of the flock, the house of Judah. The issue, however, will not be doubtful. The rejection of his proclamation by the goats and their shepherds, and their preparations for war, will arouse his indignation; as it is written in Zech. 10:3, "Mine anger was kindled against the shepherds, and I punished the goats". The when and the how, are expounded in the succeeding sentences, saying, "For Yahweh Tz'vaoth (He who shall be hosts -- the Eternal Power) hath visited his flock, the House of Judah, and hath made them as his goodly horse in the battle. And they shall be as mighty men, who tread down their enemies in the mire of the streets in the battle: and they shall fight, because Yahweh is with them;" "and shall be seen over them". The acceptance of the angel-proclamation by the British Isles will plant the Lamb-Power in all their dependencies. Sheba, Dedan, the Hindoo Tarshish, Australia, New Zealand, the Cape, British North America, and the West Indies, will be "ends of the earth" and "isles afar off," from which the Gentiles shall come to the Great Shepherd and to whom they shall say, "Surely, our fathers have inherited lies, vanities, and things in which there is no profit" (Jer. 16:4, 9). This honest renunciation of "the wisdom of our ancestors," then, by angel-proclaimers of the Truth, proved to be folly, will prepare them for a hearty co-operation with Judah, in slaying the Beast, and giving his body politic to the burning flame. The day of eternal doom will then have arrived for republics throughout the world. The fate of the United States, so-called, will depend upon the response they may return to the proclamation, which is sure to be announced throughout the Western Hemisphere. If they reject it, Judah and his allies in British America, as the forces of the Rainbowed Angel standing upon the earth and sea, whose progress is as pillars of fire, will be at hand to enforce obedience with the two-edged sword of Divine indignation. The only alternative in this unparalleled "time of trouble" for North and South America, will be submission or desolation. Annexation to the little kingdom of Judah, in accordance with the law proceeding from Zion, will be an indispensable condition, without which neither this, nor any other country, can obtain exemption from war, pestilence, famine, and desolation. We can hardly expect that the United States will transfer themselves to the dominion of Judah's Lion peaceably. If wise men were in place and power, they would doubtless be prompt to "serve Yahweh with fear, to rejoice with trembling, and to kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and they perish from the way, when his wrath is kindled but a little" (Psa. 2:11-12). But experience teaches, that wise and prudent men do not find their way into office, and where fools reign the people perish. The prospects of the country are dark and threatening; and it is much to be feared that model-republicans will not be disposed to accept their destiny until they have been broken with weeping, and wailing, and gnashing of teeth. The judgment which succeeds the Pentecostian proclamation in mid-heaven is "national," and executed by Christ and the Saints. But before the proclamation begins there is also judgment. This, however, is not national, but "individual" -- a judgment having relation to the ancient Apostolical proclamation. The Son of Man presides judicially at both these gatherings before him; and in each sitting there is his right hand, and his left. The right hand is synonymous with friendship, favor, alliance, peace, and reward; while the left is indicative of their opposites. Nations on the Son of Man's right hand are "joined to Yahweh as his people" -- the subjects of his empire; while individuals on the King's right hand, are associates with him in the glory, honor, and power, of his dominion. They share with him in the throne, as exhibited in Apoc. 4. But in the judgment of the King's household some will have to pass to the left, where "shame and contempt" await them. They arrive at this left hand after being "cast out" from the Divine presence "into the outer darkness, where are wailing and gnashing of teeth". This left hand is in the country occupied by the Goat nations, which, as the embodiment of all that is hostile to the kingdom prepared for the blessed of the Father, are styled by Jesus, "the Devil and his Angels". These are the same as Daniel's fourth Beast, which is styled Apocalyptically, "the Dragon, the Old Serpent, which is the Devil and Satan". The fourteenth chapter, from the eighth verse to the eleventh inclusive, treats of the kolasin aionion, the aion-torment, decreed for the Devil and his adherents; and into which they are commanded to "depart", who are adjudged unfit to appear among the 144,000 with the Lamb on Mount Zion. Thus the future national judgment of the great day affords scope for the "sorer punishment" of those "wicked and slothful servants," who are unprofitable for the Master's use. Such is the fate of those who "come forth to a resurrection of condemnation", for neglecting to improve the talents entrusted to their care. The reader can avail himself of these hints concerning the right and left hands of the Great Shepherd, in aid of a "spiritual understanding" of the twenty-fifth of Matthew; and of the relative position of the two classes indicated in the parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus. In conclusion of this section it may be added, that the acceptance of the proclamation by the British "Isles afar off" -- "the Mart of Nations" -- places all the wealth of the British Empire at the disposal of the Lamb and his 144,000. These are the subject of the forty-fifth psalm, where they are treated of prophetically as a Divine and mighty king rejoicing with his bride and her companions. In the first chapter of Hebrews, Paul identifies this king with Christ Jesus, who has not yet been manifested in the circumstances set forth in the psalm. When the time arrives for the scene exhibited in Apoc. 19:11, he will, in the words of David, "Gird his sword upon his thigh with his glory and his majesty. And in his majesty he will ride prosperously because of truth and meekness, and righteousness: and his right hand will teach him terrible things. His arrows will be sharp in the heart of the King's enemies (the Goat-nations), whereby the people fall under him". When the union predicted between Christ and his Brethren hath ensued, and their throne established on Mount Zion, it is declared in the twelfth verse of the psalm, that "the Daughter of Tyre shall be there with a gift". This shows that in the day when Christ shall make "the blessed of the Father" princes in all the earth (v. 16), there will be a Merchant-Power among "the powers that be," to which the prophetic title of "the Daughter of Tyre" will be applicable. This can be no other than Britain, the mart of modern nations, which inherits the wealth and commerce of her ancient mother; who, after being forgotten seventy years, revived and sang as a harlot; and like her British Daughter, "committed fornication with all the kingdoms of the world upon the face of the earth". The merchandise and revenue of the revived Tyrian Mother passed from her to Alexandria, Venice, Lisbon, and at length to Britannia; who holds on to them as her own peculiar and especial inheritance. She hopes to monopolize them as long as the sun and moon endure. Though this is objected to by other nations, and among these the United States, they have not the ability, and never will have, to divert them to their own ports and coffers. The decree of heaven is against them; for "the abundance of the sea shall be turned unto Zion, and the wealth of the nations shall come to her:" "for the nation and kingdom that will not serve the city of Yahweh, the Zion of the Holy One of Israel, shall perish, and be utterly wasted" (Isa. 60:5, 11, 12, 14). Thus the commerce and riches of the world, instead of migrating westward, are to return to the Holy Land, where Tyre of old used to rejoice with Israel, when Solomon and Hiram were in league. And this will come to pass when Britain shall have exchanged her present rulers for "those who dwell before Yahweh" -- when the nations of the British Empire are ruled by the Lamb and his 144,000 on Mount Zion -- by the Eternal Power incarnate in Jesus and his Brethren "glorified together" (Rom. 8:17). Then, in the words of the prophet, "The merchandise and hire of Tyre shall be holiness to Yahweh; it shall not be treasured nor laid up; for her merchandise shall be for them who dwell before Yahweh, to eat sufficiently, and for durable clothing" (Isa. 23:18). Thus, "the wealth of the sinner is laid up for the just;" "for to the sinner God giveth travail, to gather and to heap up, that He may give to him that is good before God" (Prov. 13:22; Ecc. 2:26). How vast has been the travail through which the Daughter of Tyre has passed in hewing her way to her present greatness! What oceans of blood she has shed, what tears and groans she has extorted from her laboring and ill-fed millions devoted to the creation of wealth! It is gathered from all the face of the earth, and heaped up in store; but not for the capitalists, who pride themselves in its possession; nor for the impoverished multitudes, who as mere beasts of burden toil without cheer in its accumulation. No, it is for none of these; it is "for the just who dwell before Yahweh" -- "the poor in this world, rich in faith," then in possession of the kingdom promised to the obedient -- James 2:5. 7. The Second Angel#HEADINGOF# #ITALIC#"And another angel followed, saying, Fallen, fallen hath Babylon, the Great City, because she hath made all nations drink of the wine of the raging of her fornication"#ITALICOFF# -- Verse 8. I have styled this angel "the Second," because the one that suceeds it is called "a third". The first angel, which must, of course, precede the second, is the messengerhood engaged in "drawing the bow," or sounding the good news of the aeon (aion) in mid-heaven, after the manifestation of the Son of Deity upon Mount Zion. The second angel is constituted of the party of action by which the Roman Question can alone be solved. The purpose of their mission is the overthrow of Babylon, whose fall is proclaimed in the aorist, or indefinite tense, epesen, epese, which declares the event without specifying the exact time. This, however, is certain, that the Roman Babylon will not fall until the proclamation in mid-heaven shall have been announced, saying, "Come out of her my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. For her sins have reached until the heaven (achri tou ouranou), and the Deity remembers her iniquities" (ch. 18:5). The people here addressed are the eight thousand Jews in Rome, and the tens of thousands in the kingdoms of the Beast; who, if they remain in her, are warned, that they will be treated as the enemies of the Great Shepherd of the Sheep. The initiation of the second angel judgment is synchronous with the Seventh Vial, in the outpouring of which "great Babylon comes in remembrance before the Deity, to give unto her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of his wrath" (ch. 16:19). The effect of this is the fall from which she never recovers; and which is proclaimed by the second angel. I have said, that the second angelhood is constituted of the party of action. This party solves all questions beyond the ability of human governments to settle. It consists of the Spirit in co-operation with the Saints, who in ch. 18:8, is styled "the Lord God," or Yahweh Elohim; in ver. 20, "the Heaven," or "holy apostles and prophets;" and in ver. 4, 6, 7, "my people". The Saints, to whom judgment is given under the whole heaven, in command of the hosts of Judah and their allies, are the constituents of the second angel power. It is their mission to give torment and sorrow to Babylon in a double proportion to the cruelties she has inflicted upon them; and not to withdraw their hand until they have destroyed her from the earth. The Babylon whose fall is proclaimed by the second angel, is the city consisting of ten parts, or kingdoms (ch. 11:13); whose Queen, as yet unwidowed, is the Mother of Harlots enthroned in Rome (ch. 17:5, 18). This ch. 14:8, is the first place where the name occurs in the Apocalypse; but, as we have seen, not the first place where it is alluded to. In ch. 11:8, it is "styled spiritually Sodom and Egypt;" because its wickedness is equal to theirs; and the judgments decreed against it, as terrible and disastrous. She is as Sodom, for her fornication is raging; and as Egypt, for she has made all nations drink of its wine. Hence the plagues of the second angel in all the fierceness of the wrath of God. The initiation of the second angel tormentation of the worshippers of the Beast and his Image is the inauguration of the day of revenges, when Yahweh whets his glittering sword, and His hand takes hold of judgment. It is the opening of the Hour of Judgment upon the rebellious Goats in which Yahweh, the Man of War, will render vengeance to His enemies, and reward them that hate Him. Some idea may be formed of this vengeful recompense from Deut. 32:42, in which He saith, "I will make mine arrows drunk with blood, and my sword shall devour flesh; and that with the blood of the slain and of the captives, from the beginning of revenges upon the enemy". This will be "a time of trouble such as never was since there was a nation to that same time" (Dan. 12:1) -- the antitype of the great Pentecostian Day of Atonement, in which the Trumpet of the Jubilee shall sound (Lev. 25:9). The second and third angels of this fourteenth chapter are the executors of "the judgment written" in this "great day of God Almighty" (ch. 16:14): a day in which an offering shall be made by fire to Yahweh unto the total and complete consumption of the Apocalyptic Beasts, which as the sin of the political world, shall be destroyed by fire and sword. The Whole Burnt Offering of these Beasts is a grand condemnation in the flesh of the sin-powers. They are to be put to death by being slain with Yahweh's sword; and tormented with fire and brimstone in the burning lake, in the presence of the holy angels, or messengers, and in the presence of the Lamb, who kill and offer the sacrifice to the Eternal Power of the universe (ch. 14:10; 19:20, 21). But this "day of vengeance" in which the Great Shepherd who is a priest upon his throne (Zech. 6:13) punishes the Goats, is also "the year of his redeemed" (Isa. 63:4). He is the redeemer of the two classes of mankind; these are first, "his brethren" whom he has taken out from the nations for his name (Acts 15:14): and secondly, the many nations who shall be joined to Him as his people (Zech. 2:11). Of this second class are the twelve tribes of the house of Jacob. The nation of Israel is to be the first-born, or chief son of the national family, being the beloved nation for the fathers' sake (Rom. 11:28). The first class are redeemed from the earth, and stand with the Lamb on Mount Zion, and follow him in all his wars and enterprises "whithersoever he goeth". The redemption of the second class is the work of the Eternal Power through Christ and his brethren. "He saves the tents of Judah first," and strengthens Judah's house (Zech. 12:7; 10:7); and then saves the house of Joseph, or the ten tribes of the kingdom of Ephraim. This salvation or redemption of Jacob is developed in the Jubilee, when "the Great Trumpet is blown" against the Goats; and all Israelites are invited to "return every man to his possession." The day of the second and third angels is "a time of trouble" to all nations -- to Israel as well as the rest; but there is this difference with respect to them, expressed in the declaration to Daniel that "at that time thy people shall be delivered every one that shall be found written in the book". Daniel was an Israelite and a saint. Hence his people are Israelites and saints, both of which classes are delivered in "the time of the end;" "when Yahweh shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion, and shall have purged the blood of Jerusalem from the midst thereof by the spirit of judgment and by the spirit of burning" (Isa. 4:4). It is the day in which the captivity of Israel and Judah is to be brought against their own land, consequent upon the breaking of the yoke of the House of Esau from off their neck, that foreigners may no more serve themselves of them; but that they may serve Yahweh their Elohim, and David their king, whom the Eternal Power hath already raised up for them in raising up the crucified "King of the Jews" from the dead. But this great national redemption is only arrived at through a terribly severe refining process. It is styled in Joel, "the day of Yahweh, great and very terrible; and who can abide it?" (ch. 2:11). The Goatnations will be unable to abide it; and all the dross of Jacob will be consumed. All the rebels will be purged out of the great army of resurrected dry bones, now scattered and "very dry" in all the countries of their dispersion where they are politically entombed; but in the time of the second and third angels, passing under the rod of discipline in the Wilderness of the people (Ezek. 20:33-38; 37:1-14). The prophet Malachi asks the same question as Joel. "Who may abide," saith he, "the day of his coming? And who shall stand when he (the Messenger of the Covenant) appeareth? For he is like a refiner's fire, and like fuller's soap; and he shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver: and he shall purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer unto Yahweh an offering in righteousness. Then shall the offering of Judah and Jerusalem be pleasant unto Yahweh, as in the days of old, and as in former years" (ch. 3:1-4). This day so great and very terrible, is "the Hour of his Judgment" proclaimed by the first angel in midheaven. The judgments or plagues inflicted are styled "torment with fire and brimstone;" and those who are tormented, "them who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the sign of his name". They are the plagues which cause Babylon the great city to fall. She falls, because of her wickedness in church and state; and of her sanguinary and merciless oppression of the saints and witnesses of Jesus, and of all the Jews and others she has slain upon the earth (ch. 17:6; 18:24). Jeremiah contemplating the terribleness of these "latter days" says, "Alas! for that day is great, so that none is like it; it is even the time of Jacob's trouble; but he shall be saved out of it. For it shall come to pass in that day, saith Yahweh Tz'vaoth, that I will break his yoke (the yoke of Esau's house) from off thy neck, and will burst thy bonds, and strangers shall no more serve themselves of Jacob. But they shall serve Yahweh their Elohim, and David their king whom I will raise up unto them. Therefore, fear thou not, O my servant Jacob, saith Yahweh; neither be dismayed O Israel; for, lo, I will save thee from afar, and thy seed from the land of their captivity; and Jacob shall return, and shall be in rest, and be quiet, and none shall make him afraid. For I am with thee, saith Yahweh, to save thee: though I make a full end of all nations whither I have scattered thee, yet will I not make a full end of thee: but I will correct thee, in measure, and will not leave thee altogether unpunished". Nations are political organizations of men: to make a full end of such is to dissolve and abolish all national bodies founded and built up by the violence and craftiness of the wicked. A full end is to be made of all the nations whither Yahweh has scattered the Jews. This declaration is fatal to the independence and political existence of the United States, as well as that of all nationalities. The Second and Third Angels, which are identical with the Rainbowed Angel of the tenth chapter, in the great and terrible Day of Atonement, execute this Divine purpose of reducing mankind to a common and universal brotherhood; and of subjecting them to the imperial and regal sovereignty of Jesus and his Brethren. The Israelitish Nationality, however, is not destroyed. In this day of judgment, Israelites are "corrected in measure," and the rebellious among them destroyed: but a remnant will survive the refining process of this terrible day, and its constituents will every man return to his possessions in the land of the Holy One of Israel. Because, therefore, for the sake of his name, "all they that devour Jacob shall be devoured; and all his adversaries, every one of them, shall go into captivity (ch. 13:10); and they that spoil him shall be a spoil, and all that prey upon him will I give for a prey. For I will restore health unto Jacob, and I will heal him of his wounds; because they call Zion an Outcast, saying, This is Zion, whom no man seeketh after. In the latter days Israel shall consider it" (Jer. 30). Now the Lamb-Power, as the Man of war, Yahweh, will do all this after the example of Joshua in his war upon the Canaanites; which illustrates the manner in which Yahweh fought in the day of battle (Zech. 14:3). Christ Jesus, the King of the Jews, with the 144,000, as the commanders of the armies of Israel, are "the Holy Angels" and "the Lamb" in whose presence the worshippers of the Beast and his Image are tormented in the lake of fire burning with brimstone. As the prophet like unto Moses, he will serve these as the great law-giver served Sihon, king of the Amorites, and Og, king of Bashan, whose story is narrated in Deut. 3, 4. When He opens his eyes upon the house of Judah, "he will make the governors of Judah (the Saints) like a hearth of fire among the wood, and like a torch of fire in a sheaf; and they shall devour all the peoples round about, on the fight hand and on the left". Judah will then be the sword, and the bow, in the hand of the Lamb; and the house of Joseph, the ten tribes of the old Ephraim kingdom, His arrow which shall go forth as the lightning. When this bow is drawn, its arrows will be sharp in the heart of the king's enemies; as it is written, "to-day do I declare that I will render double for thee; when I have bent Judah for me, filled the bow with Ephraim, and raised up thy sons, O Zion, against thy sons, O Greece (the Goats), and made thee (the Lamb Power in Zion) as the sword of a mighty man. And Yahweh shall be seen over them, and His arrow (Ephraim) shall go forth as the lightning: and Adonai Yahweh shall blow with a trumpet, and shall go forth with the whirlwinds of the south. And Yahweh Tz'vaoth shall defend them. And Yahweh their Elohim shall save them in that day as the flock of his people; for they shall be as the stones of a crown, lifted up as an ensign upon His land". "And they shall be as mighty men who tread down their enemies in the mire of the streets in the battle: and they shall fight because Yahweh is with them: and they shall be as though I had not cast them off. And they of Ephraim shall be as a mighty man: yea, their children shall see it, and be glad. And I will hiss for them and gather them. And I will sow them among the people: and they shall remember me in far countries: and they shall live with their children, and turn again. I will bring them again also out of the land of Egypt, and gather them out of Assyria; and I will bring them into the land of Gilead and Lebanon; and room shall not be found for them" (Zech. 9, 10). Thus, on returning home from their dispersion after they stand upon their feet as a great army, they will have to fight their way through all the countries of the house of Esau. In this Jubilee return, under the Second and Third Angels "the house of Jacob," says Obadiah, "shall be a fire, and the house of Joseph a flame, and the House of Esau for stubble, and they shall kindle in them, and devour them; and there shall not be any remaining of the house of Esau. For Saviours shall come up on Mount Zion (the Lamb with the 144,000) to judge the Mount of Esau; and the kingdom shall be Yahweh's". In this way, Babylon and the Goat-nations are "made to drink of the wine of the wrath of the Deity, prepared without mixture in the cup of his indignation." Esau will have had the dominion over Jacob long enough; and the time will now have arrived to prove to mankind "that there is a God that judgeth in the earth". Esau has lived by his sword, but not righteously. He crucified the king of Israel, persecuted and killed his brethren, corrupted the faith, trod under foot the Holy City forty and two months, and poured out the blood of Jacob like water upon the ground. But they who war against Zion and her sons "shall be as nothing, as a thing of nought". Therefore, "fear not, thou worm Jacob, and ye men of Israel: I will help thee, saith Yahweh, and thy redeemer, the Holy One of Israel. Behold I will make thee a new sharp threshing instrument having teeth: thou shalt thresh the mountains (or empires) and beat them small, and shalt make the hills (or smaller states) as chaff. Thou shalt fan them, and the wind shall carry them away, and the whirlwind shall scatter them: and thou shalt rejoice in Yahweh, and shalt glory in the Holy One of Israel" (Isa. 41:11-16). This has never come to pass since it was recorded by the prophet; for hitherto Jacob has been under the heel of Esau, whose metallic Image stands unbroken upon its feet of iron and miry clay. The work of the Second and Third Angels is to grind to powder the various metals of which it is composed; and to do the work so effectually that no place be found for the things they represent (Dan. 2:35). 8. The Third Angel

#ITALIC#"And a third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any one worship the Beast and his Image, and receive a sign upon his forehead, and upon his hand:

10. He also shall drink of the wine of the wrath of the Deity, which hath been prepared without mixture in the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the Holy Angels, and in the presence of the Lamb. 11. "And the smoke of their torment ascendeth until the aions of aions: and they have no respite day and night, who worship the Beast and his Image, and whosoever receiveth the sign of his name". "And a third angel followed them;" that is, the two angels treated of in the sixth and seventh sections. His following them indicates, that Babylon the great city has fallen before the third angel-power proceeds to finish the plagues of the last stage of "the Hour of Judgment". In other words, the terrible overthrow predicted in the eighteenth chapter will be complete. Rome will be where Sodom and Gomorrah are, and for a like reason -- because of the filthy conversation and unlawful deeds of the spirituals of wickedness in the heavenlies, who are reserved unto a day of judgment to be punished (2 Pet. 2:6-9). There will then be no "Name of Blasphemy" or Papal Dynasty, enthroned upon the Seven Heads or mountains. Popes, cardinals, bishops, priests and deacons; St. Peter, basilicas, and churches, and monastic "dens of foul spirits and all unclean and hateful birds;" with all "the dainty and goodly things lusted after" by the beastly soul of the drunken harlot of the earth -- all these abominations-will have departed; and, "as a great millstone cast into the sea", will all have subsided into the volcanic abyss to "be found no more at all". This glorious and complete destruction of the temporal and spiritual papal power will have been consummated by the Second Angel which proclaims the fall of Babylon. But something more is necessary than the destruction of the Papacy to the complete enlightening of the earth with the glory of the angel, who descends out of the heaven having great power (ch. 18:1). There still remain "the kings of the earth, who have committed fornication and lived deliciously with her;" and "the merchants of the earth," who trade in the dainty and goodly things peculiar to the bazaars, dedicated by them to guardian saints, and which they call "churches". These kings and priests survive the Sodom overthrow of "the Eternal City". They still occupy their position "afar off" in the ten streets of the Great City; for after Rome has been "utterly burned with fire" by the power of the Lord God who judgeth her, they are said to stand afar off for fear of her torment, and to bewail and lament for her. "Alas, alas," they exclaim, "that great city Babylon, that mighty city! for in one hour is thy judgment come" (v. 4, 10, 11-19). But the lamentations of her ecclesiastics are the most mournful and grievous, because the fall of the Papacy by the power of the Lamb, ruins their imposture and thievery throughout the world -- "the merchants, or great men, of the earth, by whose sorceries all the nations are deceived, shall weep and mourn over her; for no man buyeth their merchandise any more" (v. 11, 23). Rome: Centre of Babylon the Great -- to descend into the abyss (Rev. 18:21). The return of Christ will be accompanied by unprecedented upheavals of nature, among which will be devastating earthquakes. The political "earthquake" that will occur is described as "a great earthquake, such as was not since men were upon the earth, so mighty an earthquake, and so great" (Rev. 16:18) It will cause "the cities of the nations to fall". The literal earthquakes to take place will have similar results (see Zech. 14:4-10; Ezek. 38:20 Isa. 30:25). The intention of Yahweh is to "shake terribly the earth", and to induce such fear and consternation in the hearts of all, as to humble men to seek His protection (Isa. 2:19-22). The reverberations of an earthquake of such magnitude as is prophetically described, will be felt in every part of the earth. Whilst Jerusalem shall be elevated (Zech. 14:10), Rome will be swallowed up. Those two cities are incompatible. The elevation of one is inevitable at the expense of the other. Rome in ascendancy means Jerusalem in decline, and vice versa. The Scriptures are clear as to the destinies of both remarkable cities. "They shall prosper" who love the dust of Jerusalem (Psa. 102:14; 122:6). The illustration depicts a Papal gathering assembled to bow down to "the god of the earth" (Rev. 11:4) -- Publishers. This class of traffickers in the bodies and souls of men (and the sympathizers with the Papacy and "the Eternal City" are not the only class of traffickers in such wares) in the text under consideration, are the men "who worship the beast and his image, and receive a sign in their forehead, or upon their hand;" termed in verse 11, "the sign of his name". The calamity which befalls their "holy city" evidently fails to transfer their love and worship to the Lamb Power, or Stone of her destruction. They "weep and mourn over her," because her fall ruins their vested interests. Their mourning is not so much their love of the city and its body ecclesiastic, as of themselves. "Brother," said one priest to another, "what a profitable thing this fable of Jesus Christ has been to us!" This is the spirit of the craft -- they weep and mourn, not because they discover that the Catholic superstition is a bald and wicked humbug; but because they can no longer utilize it to their own aggrandizement in wealth and power -- "for no man buyeth their merchandise any more". This is the secret of their grief! A common danger cements the union of the kings and princes of the late Babylon's dominion. The Drunken Harlot priesthood, the Eighth Head of the scarlet-colored Beast, and the Ten Horns, "have one mind, and give their power and strength unto the beast" in aid of the common cause. The Eighth Head is the Dictator of the confederacy, styled in ch. 20:2, "the Dragon, that old Serpent, which is the Devil and Satan". The Harlot Priesthood is the False Prophet of the situation, that works miracles before the Beast, and deceives them that had received the sign of the Beast, and them that worshipped his Image before it was destroyed by the judgments of the Second Angel (ch. 19:20). When "christian nations" go to war, the clergy are always there to prophesy success; and to assure the combatants that the God of battles, who gives the victory, is on their side. True to their calling and character they will be the chaplains of the military establishments of the Beast in the field; and praying to their god of battles, and prophesying victory from their "sacred desks" and "altars" over the Israelitish Antichrist! As usual, they deceive the governments, and all who trust them. By their prophesyings they deceive the worshippers of the Beast, and harden their hearts for the capture and destruction to be inflicted on them by the Third Angel-power. The Beast and kings of the Goat-nations determine to make war against the King of the Jews, and to meet his forces in the field. It is not likely that they will attribute the recent overthrow of "the Eternal City" to power exerted by his will. They will no doubt consider it accidental, and but another phenomenon to be added to the overthrow of Pompeii and Herculaneum. The terrible catastrophe only inflames their wrath, and causes them to "make war upon the Lamb". The Napoleons, the Victor Emmanuels, the Francis Josephs, and the Alexanders, of the day, gather together their armies like swarms of bees, intending to scatter his troops with the whirlwind of their host -- "they came out as a whirlwind to scatter me; their rejoicing is as to devour the poor secretly" (Hab. 3:14). They will think to take him by surprise. But the Eternal Father is on his side; there will therefore be to him no cause of fear. Let the reader study Psa. 118, which treats of "the Stone which the builders refused", and he will find the nature of the situation under the third angel manifestation. "All nations compassed me about like bees;" but, as he inquires in the sixth verse, "what can man do unto me?" These armies will rush like the rushing of mighty waters, but "the Lamb shall overcome them" (Apoc. 17:14). "They shall be quenched as the fire of thorns; for by the name of Yahweh will I destroy them." By this Name they are "rebuked, and chased as the chaff of the mountains" before the wind, and like thistle-down before the whirlwind -- by this Name, "the King of kings and Lord of lords," the ten horns are overcome. They are conquered by the Lamb with Seven Horns and Seven Eyes; because he is the King Almighty; "and they that are with him are called, and chosen, and faithful". Such disaster as this, saith the prophet, "is the portion of them that spoil us, and the lot of them that scatter us" (Isa. 17:12-14). Thus in "the great day of God Almighty," by the invincible troops of the King of Israel, is the Beast and False-Prophet polity "taken and cast alive into a lake of fire". This third angel judgment, which, like the second, belongs to the plagues of the Seventh Vial, slays Daniel's fourth Beast, destroys its body politic, and gives him to the burning flame (ch. 7:11). By this process the Latin Catholic superstition is eradicated from the kingdoms of Western Europe, which by conquest "become the kingdoms of Yahweh, and of his Christ" (ch. 11:15). The third angel judgments, however, are not expended with this result. Their smoke continues to ascend eis aionas aionon, to cycles of cycles, or courses of time which constitute what is commonly styled "the Millennium," because it is a period of a thousand years' duration. The smoke of third angel "torment" continues to ascend to the "establishment of the economy of the fulness of the times", by which time there will be no more Latin and Greek Catholics, Protestants, and Moslems to be subdued. This will be a glorious and blessed consummation of "the war of the great day of God Almighty" in which Israel will have done valiantly (Num. 24:18); chasing their enemies who fall before them by the sword -- five chasing a hundred, and a hundred of them putting ten thousand to flight (Lev. 26:8). The purpose of the second and third angel-judgments is fourfold; first, to avenge the blood of the saints and witnesses of Jesus shed by the spiritual and temporal rulers of the Graeco-Latin nations; secondly, to render vengeance to the rebellious who refuse to obey the gospel announced in the First Angel-proclamation; thirdly, to develop the mercy decreed for Yahweh's land and the twelve tribes of Israel; and, fourthly, that all adversaries being subdued, the surviving population of the earth may rejoice as the reconciled people of the Holy One of Israel, in whom, and in his father Abraham, all the families of the earth are blessed. This fourfold purpose is indicated in Deut. 32, in the words, "To me belongeth vengeance and recompense. Yahweh shall judge his people, and repent himself for his servants, when he seeth that their power is gone. See now that I, even I am He (the Promised Seed), and that there are none of elohim (Ahyim Elohim) with me; I kill, and I make alive; I wound, and I heal; neither is there any that can deliver out of my hand. For I lift up my hand to the heavens (Apoc. 10:5, 6), and say, I am the Living One of the Olahm (or Millennium). If I whet my glittering sword, and mine hand take hold on judgment, I will render vengeance to mine enemies, and I will reward them that hate me. I will make mine arrows (the Ten Tribes) drunk with blood, and my sword (Judah) shall devour flesh with the blood of the slain, and of the captives, from the beginning of revenges upon the enemy". Therefore, "O ye nations, his people, cause ye to rejoice; for he will avenge the blood of his servants, and will render vengeance to his adversaries, and will be merciful to his Land and to his people". When these judgments of the Second and Third Angels are all exhausted, and the smoke of them consequently ceases to ascend, mankind will then come to know that "there is none like the Ail of Yeshurun (the Strength of Israel) tiding the heavens in thy help, and with his majesty the clouds. The Elohim of the East elohai kedem, (Apoc. 16:12), a refuge, and underneath the Powers ofOlahm (the Lamb with the 144,000). He shall thrust out the enemy from before thee, and shall say, Destroy! Then Israel shall dwell in safety alone. The Fountain of Jacob shall be upon a land of corn and wine; also his heavens shall drop down dew." Then it may be truly said, "Happy art thou, O Israel; who is like unto thee, O people saved by Yahweh, the shield of thy help, and who is the sword of thine exaltation! Also thine enemies shall be proved liars to thee, and thou shalt tread upon their high places" (Deut. 33:26-29). The "smoke" of verse 11 which ascends, is the symbol of the glory and power of Deity in burning operation against the worshippers of the Beast. In ch. 15:8, it is styled "smoke from the glory of Deity, and from His power". In this place, "the temple" is said to be "filled with" this smoke. The Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple (ch. 21:22). The smoke is, therefore, His wrath; and while it flames, "no one is able to enter into the nave;" for the nave is the Most Holy Heavenly State, in which the nations hang the trumpet in the hall, and practise war no more. 9. The Patience of the Saints "Here is the patience of the saints; here, they who keep the commandments of the Deity and the faith of Jesus" -- Verse 12. This is parallel with ch. 13:10, in a certain degree. In this text the words have reference to the subject-matter of "the patience and the faith;" while in verse 12, it indicates the persons themselves who are specially related to this patience and faith. The word hode, rendered "here" is as if one should say en tode, that is, topo, in this place: ta hode, signifies the things here, that is, the things transacted in this place. "He that leadeth into captivity shall go into captivity." Hence, in the third angel-judgment, "the Beast is taken, and with him the Pseudo prophet" (ch. 19:20). The things represented by these symbols constitute a power that has led the saints and witnesses captive, and killed them with the sword. Therefore, the power "that killeth with the sword, by the sword must be killed;" and that, too, by the sword wielded by the saints (Psa. 149:6-9). Hence, also, in that section of the third angel-judgment represented in the eleventh verse, and further illustrated in the sickle scenes from the fourteenth to the twentieth verses inclusive, the remnant of the hostile power of the blasphemers (ch. 16:21) is slain with the sword of the "Faithful and True One," the Commander-in-Chief, "who judges and makes war in righteousness" (ch. 19:11). What, then, are the saints waiting for, and what do they believe in? In other words, what is their patience and faith as the Brethren of Christ? The answer is, that they believe in and are waiting for the slaying of Daniel's fourth Beast, the destruction of his body politic, and the giving of it to the burning flame; and for the giving of the kingdom, and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven, to the people consisting of the saints of the Most High Ones (Dan. 7:11, 27); and Apocalyptically exhibited in chs. 14, 15. In the twelfth verse, the "here" leaves the reader without question as to who these saints are. They are those who have the faith of Jesus. True, "The Mother of Harlots and of all the Abominations of the earth," the Harlots and Abominations themselves -- Latins, Greeks, State-Church and Dissenting Protestants of every name and denomination of blasphemy in the Court of the Gentiles -- all of them claim to have "the faith of Jesus!" Of this there is no doubt. It is easy to make claims, but not so easy to establish them. The text before us, however, determines the question against them all. They who keep the faith of Jesus are there declared to be those who "keep the commandments of the Deity" -- the obedient. They are all of them the reverse of this. The spirit of obedience to the Divine laws is not in them. The only spirit that is their familiar spirit, is "the spirit that works in the children of disobedience", who "are by nature the children of wrath" (Eph. 2:2, 3). The "christians of every name and denomination of Christendom," as the phrase is, are not the saints; for they neither "keep the commandments of the Deity", nor "the faith of Jesus". They are piously alien from them all. Their own published confession of themselves is true -- they are, as they say, "miserable offenders, who have erred and strayed from the Almighty's ways; and have too much followed the devices and desires of their own hearts, and offended against His holy laws; having left undone those things which they ought to have done; and done those things which they ought not to have done; and there is no health in them." This is a "general confession" made every Sunday morning by the whole congregation of the Anglican State superstition throughout the British Isles, North America and the Indies; everywhere, in short, where Episcopalianism is found. The miserable offenders who thus stigmatize themselves as being utterly destitute of spiritual health, are recognized as good and orthodox christians by all their pious contemporaries, though somewhat too aristocratic and overbearing. In thus recognizing them they are partakers with them. Listen to the individual outpourings of State-Harlot adherents and Dissenting Earth-Abomination members, and the same vein of self-condemnation will be found to run through them all. They all place themselves in the category of miserable offenders in whom is no health. This being their own testimony concerning their "inward man," we have no right to dispute it. We accept it as the truth, and nothing but the truth. This confession, however, is utterly incompatible with the claim of being the "keepers of the commandments of the Deity and the faith of Jesus". The keepers of these do not err and stray from the Father's ways like lost sheep, but they walk in His ways because they keep His commandments and the faith of Jesus; and being his sheep, "they know his voice, and a stranger they will not follow". No, "miserable offenders" have no identity with these; but are of them who worship the Beast and his Image, and receive the sign of his name -- the unhappy subjects of the judgments of third angel power. That crucial rhantists (besprinkled infant sprinklers) are in no way related to "the saints," is clear from their total ignorance of the signification of the things symbolized in ch. 13:1-10; 14:1-20. Their greatest luminary Rev. Mr. Elliott, gives nearly the whole of this fourteenth chapter the go by, and the little he does speculate upon, from ver. 1 to 5, he expounds as finding its accomplishment in the time and events of the Lutheran Rebellion! The saints are waiting for the things represented in the first eleven verses of this chapter; the besprinkled subjects of the sign of the Beast's name are not. Hence, "the patience" symbolized en hode topo, in this place, is not their patience. They are waiting to "go to heaven" in Transkyania, where there is neither time nor space! It takes the credulity of the Beast's worshippers to believe in a place of such ample dimensions as "heaven," where there is no space! But nothing is too absurd for the "patience" of them who keep not the faith of Jesus. But in this vision of the first, second and third angels are brought to light the saints themselves. "Here," or in this place of the Apocalypse, are seen the saints in the execution of "the judgment written". This is equivalent to declaring that "the Holy Angels and the Lamb," of verse 10, are symbolical of Jesus and his brethren, and identical with the Lamb and 144,000 of the first verse. These at the head of their forces are the power symbolized by the second and third angels. They begin their career in "prophesying again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings," as the first angel making proclamation in midheaven; and they finish it in binding the Dragon, and celebrating their victory over the Beast, and over his Image, and over the sign and number of his name, standing upon the sea of glass, having the harps of the Deity (Apoc. 15:2). In all their career "the nations rage, and the kingdoms are moved; but He uttered his voice, and the earth melted". When their work of judgment is in progress, it will be said, "Come, behold the works of Yahweh, who hath set desolations in the earth. He is making wars to cease to the end of the earth; he will break the bow, and will cut the spear in sunder; and will burn the chariots in the fire. Be still, and know that I am Elohim. I will be exalted among the nations, and I will be exalted in the earth. Yahweh Tz'vaoth (He who shall be hosts) is with us; a strong place for us is the Elohim of Jacob" (Psa. 46:6-11). 10. A Voice From the Heaven

#ITALIC#And I heard a voice from the heaven, saying to me, Write! Blessed the dead dying in the Lord from this time. Yea, saith the Spirit, in order that they may take rest from their labors; and their works he goeth in aid of with them"#ITALICOFF# -- Verse 13. The principal emendation of this verse is the rendering of the word akolouthei, which in the common version is incorrectly translated in the plural, as if "their works" were the nominative to the verb. The "Bible Union" Version, and all its "authorities," have fallen into the same grammatical error. In their attempted exposition of the words "their works follow with them" they add, "as an attendant train; so speedy is their recognition and reward". They then call Milton's poetry to their aid, saying: "Thy works and alms, and all thy good endeavor, Stay'd not behind, nor in the grave were trod," or as it originally stood in ms.: "Straight followed thee the path that saints have trod But, as Faith pointed with her golden rod, Follow'd thee up to joy and bliss for ever." This is the heathen fiction, poetically expressed, of "immortal souls" going up at corporeal death to joy and bliss; and their works and alms, and good endeavour, as an attendant train of witnesses, bespeaking for them a glorious welcome in the skies. The Anglo-American Harlot in the United States, has omitted the words, "and their works do follow them," in its service for the burial of the dead; and it makes the blessedness of these to consist in resting from their labors in the grave! This idea is expressed by the word "for" instead of "that" -- Blessed are the dead; for they rest from their labors. Hence, as the grave was the horizon of their imagination, her bishops saw the impropriety of sending their "works and alms, and all their good endeavour" after them into the grave: they therefore cut the knot of difficulty by ignoring the words altogether! The error in the translation is not for want of a grammatical knowledge of Greek; but because the translators when they render it correctly, can see no sense in it. In order, therefore, to make what they regarded sense, they repudiated the grammar, and gave to the verb in the singular, a noun plural for its nominative: by which process they are enabled to transmute it, as by the philosopher's stone, into "divinity" more sound and precious than the gold that perishes! But, let us turn from this theological trickery, and examine the difficulty by the light of the original. This is faithfully rendered in the words at the head of this section, to the exposition of which we shall now proceed in the order it suggests. John, who was contemplating the smoking torment, which had now reached the period of its extinction at the commencement of the aions of aions, commonly called "the Millennium" -- "heard a voice from the heaven". We must bear in mind this particular time in connection with its events, when he heard the voice; for the hearing of it at this crisis was indicative of the time when the subjects referred to in the voice shall be blessed and rest from their labors. It was a voice from the heaven; and considering that it respects the blessed of the Father, it is doubtless the voice of the Son of Man, sitting upon the throne of his glory after he had punished the Goats, and established the kingdom upon the ruin of theirs -- "Then shall the King say to them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom which has been prepared for you from the foundation of the State" (Matt. 25:34). When they do this, they rest from their judicial labors, and enjoy the blessing promised to the Saints. John says, that this voice from the heaven was addressed to him -- "saying unto me". This does not please "the recent editors," nor the Bible Union annotators. They advise the omission. We would do better in rejecting the advice. For myself, I prefer to retain it; for John being by the voice told to write, and what to write, the voice said to him what he has written. And it was spoken to him as the representative of the "blessed" -- of "them dying in the Lord;" for what is said to John is said also to his brethren in "the patience and faith of the Saints". It was said to him, "Write!" He obeyed the command, and we have before us what he was told to write. "Blessed the dead dying in the Lord". These words specify a particular class of dead ones -- a class of people, who while living believed the gospel of the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ; and having been immersed into the Lord, were "in the Lord;" and thenceforth continued to walk in him until death. When death overshadowed them, they fell asleep in Jesus, or "died in the Lord". Hence, "the dead dying in the Lord" are the saints of all the ages and generations preceding the future advent of the Ancient of Days. The "justified by faith" before "the faith" came, are included among these (Luke 13:28). These are all "blessed" in inheriting the kingdom and glory to which they are called, or invited, by the gospel of their salvation. But, when is Yahweh's body of dead ones "blessed?" Is it, as "theologians" teach, when they are deposited in graves? -- when the worm is feeding upon them, and they are seeing corruption? Is this the time of blessedness? It may be to the worshippers of the Beast and his Image, but certainly not to the Saints. John, dramatically contemporary with the end of the third angel's mission, gives us a different reply. Referring to that crisis, he writes, aparti, "from now," or "from this time". It is the time indicated by Jesus in Matt. 16:27, saying, "The Son of Man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then (topte, that is, afterwards) he shall reward every man according to his works". The time of blessedness is when the smoke has all cleared out of the temple; and the Saints have fully executed the judgment committed to them. The wrath of the Deity being all "filled up", "all the families of the earth are blessed in Abraham and his Seed" (Gen. 12:3; 22:18; Gal. 3:8). "From this time", the resurrected brethren of Jesus are blessed in the possession of the kingdom in abundant peace. The "war of the great day of God Almighty," with all its lightnings and "Seven Thunders" proceeding from the throne (ch. 4:5) will be hushed in millennial peace, when "No strife shall rage, nor hostile feuds Disturb those peaceful years; To ploughshares men shall beat their swords, To pruning-hooks their spears. No longer hosts encount'ring hosts, Shall crowds of slain deplore; They hang the trumpet in the hall, And practise war no more". "Yea, saith the Spirit." These words are an endorsement of what "the voice from the heaven" said to John; as if the Spirit had said, "Yea; the First fruits unto the Deity and the Lamb, in whose mouth was found no guile, and who had died in the Lord in ages and generations passed, are 'blessed from this time,' when the Seventh Vial of wrath shall have been completely emptied, and the smoke of its judgments entirely cleared away". But, why is the Spirit thus specially introduced in this place? In the first place, to inform the reader what will result to the saints in their blessedness at this time -- "in order that they may take rest from their labors;" and in the second place, to explain to him how it comes to pass, that these who come forth from among the dead "in the nether parts of the earth," where all are weak (Isa. 14:10) should prove so omnipotent in all their operations -- "and their works He goeth in aid of with them". The saints are blessed at the time indicated, not simply because they rest, but to the end that they may take rest (hina anapausontai) from their labors. They are blessed in the inscription of the Father's Name upon their foreheads, by which they were "clothed upon by their house from heaven". This makes the earthy bodies with which they emerged from the nether parts of the earth, incorruptible, immortal, almighty, and spiritual. They are blessed in the possession of this "New Name" or Divine nature; and in having conferred upon them the honor and glory of "following the Lamb (or Spirit) whithersoever he goeth" in the evolution of all the works exhibited in this fourteenth chapter. They are thus "the blessed of the Father," being like what Jesus is now, and as the angels (1 John 3:2; Luke 20:36). They are thus made omnipotent, and like him, imbued with "an energy whereby they are able to subdue all things". They are blessed with these attributes of omnipotence that they may be able to create the sabbatism, and to take rest in "the sabbatism, that remains for the people of the Deity" (Heb. 4:9). This is the end set before them who are blessed; an end to the development of which vast and mighty "labors" will be required. The labors of the Saints are world-wide. Mankind has no conception of them. They are labors whereby "every island shall flee away, and the mountains shall not be found" (Apoc. 16:20). These are the islands and mountains of the political earth -- the kingdoms and empires of the world. All these are to become the kingdoms of the Eternal Spirit, and of his Anointed Body consisting of Jesus and his Brethren (ch. 11:15). Let the reader figure out for himself the work to be performed in rendering them powerless, and bringing them into absolute subjection to "the King of the Jews," and he will be enabled to form a faint, idea of "the works and labors of the Saints," to be performed before they take rest in the kingdom of the Deity. These islands and mountains, of which Great Britain, Russia, France, and such like, are examples, are maintained in political existence by vast naval and military power and resources; and the Continental Powers are so constituted, that they can conscript "the last man" for conflict in "the last ditch," before they will yield to temporal and spiritual annihilation. But the decree has gone forth, and is here Apocalyptically recorded against them. They must succumb, and "wait for his law". Their fleets must be surrendered, and their armies routed, slaughtered, and dispersed. Their hearts will be hardened like the heart of Pharaoh. "Yahweh hath made all things for Himself; yea, even the wicked for the Day of Evil" (Prov. 16:4). Hence, He hath made the Powers that be for the day of evil, as "vessels of wrath fitted to destruction", in which He will make His power known (Rom. 9:22). Their hardened hearts will cause them to stand and resist, till they are broken to shivers as the vessels of a potter (Apoc. 2:27). It is Jesus and his brethren who have the glory of giving them this terrific overthrow, in the execution of their judicial labors upon Babylon, and the world-wide worshippers of the Beast and his Image. To reduce these islands and mountains to a submarine level -- to overflow them with an unruffled and glassy sea; to make them as "a plain before Zerubbabel," and to develop "a great mountain thereon that shall fill the whole earth" (Dan. 2:35), these are the labors of the Saints, which will leave their mark upon the world for a thousand years; nor will they ever be forgotten, as long as the sun and moon shall shine upon the earth. But their prowess is not exclusively of themselves. "The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do; for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise;" "The Father that dwelleth in me, He doeth the works" (John 5:19; 14:10). Upon this principle "their works" are performed likewise. The Saints can do nothing of themselves; for it is "not by might nor by power," originating from men; "but by My Spirit, saith Yahweh Tz'vaoth". The prowess of the saints is all attributable to the Spirit, which they will have become in being "justified by Spirit" after their appearance at "the tribunal of Christ" -- "that which hath been born of spirit is spirit" (John 3:6). The antithesis in Zech. 6:6, is between flesh and spirit. The "great mountain," which before Zerubbabel is to "become a plain," is the power of the old Adam, organized and concentrated in the powers represented in Nebuchadnezzar's Image. This is to be broken to pieces, and scattered as chaff, "not by the might and power" of mortal men, however effectively armed and disciplined; but by the Spirit incorporate in the Saints; and energizing the armies of Israel under their command; so that five Israelites, as so many Samsons, may chase a hundred, and a hundred put ten thousand to flight (Lev. 26:8). In this exposition the reader will see in what sense it is said, "their works He goeth in aid of with them;" and he will also perceive, who it is that goeth in aid with them, and what noun likewise is the singular nominative to the verb akolouthei, in the third person sirigular of the present indicative. The Spirit goeth with them in aid of their works. Without the Spirit they could do nothing; but aided by the Spirit, there is nothing too difficult for them to accomplish. The Spirit is their akolouthos or "attendant", in whatever capacity the circumstances of the situation may require them to act. "He goeth with them," akolouthei met' auton, so that, as Ezekiel saw in his visions of the Elohim, "whithersoever the Spirit was to go, they went" without being turned aside from the execution of their purpose (ch. 1:12, 20). Thus, it is not the works of piety and "supererogation" performed by "professors of religion," and the charitable of no profession, which "follow them up to joy and bliss for ever," and obtain for them "a speedy recognition and reward". This is a vain conceit of the carnal mind, which, in all its thinkings, is at variance with the truth. Nor does it mean, that they who die in the Lord in the Millennium are blessed in an especial sense, as compared with those who die in the Lord in the times of the Gentiles. Such is not the fact. More blessed are they who die in the Lord during his absence from earth; for though their tribulations are greater while living, the glory and honor will be greater in the kingdom; when their post-resurrectional labors, aided by the Spirit, shall have conquered for them therein, "the rest that remaineth for the people of God." 11. The Reaping of the Earth's Harvest

14. "And I looked, and behold a white cloud, and upon the cloud one sitting like to a Son of Man, having upon his head a golden stephan, and in his hand a sharp sickle. 15. "And another angel came out of the nave, vociferating with a loud voice to him sitting upon the cloud, Thrust in thy sickle, and reap, because for thee hath arrived the hour of the reaping; for the harvest of the earth hath been ripened. 16. And he that is sitting upon the cloud, cast his sickle upon the earth, and the earth was reaped". "And I looked," saith John. Previous to this his ears, not his eyes, had been addressed. He had just been listening to the "voice from the heaven," and the comment of the Spirit upon it. Having finished the writing of it in the book before him, he very naturally looked up, and thereupon perceived, that the scene had been changed. When he last wrote the words "I looked, and, behold," he introduced us to a scene upon Mount Zion, where the Lamb with the 144,000 are seen standing. This is a Pentecostian scene, an exhibition of First fruit. But, before Pentecost, comes the Passover in its fulfilment in the kingdom of the Deity (Luke 22:15-18). We had not been informed whether the Lamb and the 144,000 had entered Zion without a conflict, or as the result of a great disaster inflicted upon the enemy. The reader will perceive a remarkable transition from the subject treated of in the latter half of the thirteenth chapter to that of the beginning of the fourteenth. They are altogether different and unconnected. The former treats of the Name of the Beast, and the manner of its establishment in the earth; the latter, of the Name of the Father, and what it effects after its Apocalypse; but as to how it established itself in Zion, this fourteenth chapter has hitherto afforded us no information. Before the Lamb can enter Zion with the 144,000, it will be necessary for him to expel the enemy. He comes to redeem Zion from the power of the foreigners, who have "come in like a flood", and afflicted her with "desolation and destruction, and the famine, and the sword". At this crisis of Zion's history, coeval with "darkness covering the earth, and gross darkness the people," Yahweh inquires through the prophet, "What have I here that My people is taken away for naught? They who rule over them make them to howl, saith Yahweh; and My Name continually every day is blasphemed". "They have scattered Israel among the nations, and they have parted My land;" and "the king of the north hath planted the tents of his entrenched camp between the seas to the mountain of the glory of the Holy One" (Isa. 59:19; 52:5; Joel 3:2; Dan. 11:45). Such are Zion's relations, domestic and foreign, social, civil, and spiritual, at the crisis immediately preceding the appearance of the Lamb and his company within her walls. Being assembled in the Valley of Jehoshaphat, and having laid successful siege to Jerusalem, they rifle its houses, ravish its women, and send half of its population into captivity, many of whom they sell to the Greeks for slaves at the vilest prices (Zech. 14:2; Joel 3:3). This prostrates Jerusalem in the dust, and fastens bands around the neck of the captive daughter of Zion. The uncircumcised and the unclean, then in possession of Tyre and Zidon and the coasts of Palestine, are in high feather over their success. This will be truly the day of Jacob's trouble, in which there will be none to help, nor any to uphold (Isa. 63:5; Jer. 30:7). But, Zion's extremity is her Redeemer's opportunity. "When," saith Moses, "he seeth that their power is gone, he will repent himself for his servants;" and saith Joel, "He will then be jealous for his land, and pity his people, who shall no more be made a reproach among the nations" (ch. 2:18, 19; Deut. 32:36). "The Harvest of the Earth," according to Joel, and John's angel that comes out of the nave, hath been ripened; "for their wickedness is great". The harvest is composed of vast multitudes of ripened wickedness in the plain, or valley of judgment, unconsciously awaiting a terrible overthrow. Joel in vision saw them all assembled there, as expressed in the words, "Multitudes, multitudes (hamonim, hamonim) in the valley of the judgment; for the Day of Yahweh is near in the valley of the judgment" (ch. 3:14). These hamonim are the hamon-gog of Ezekiel 39:11 -- the multitude of Gog, which is buried in the valley of the judgment executed; and gives name to an adjacent city, called Hamonah, that is, Multitude. This and the preceding chapter of Ezekiel are parallel with Joel 3, and John's vision of the reaping. The prophet is indignant at their wickedness. He does not pray for their conversion, nor for their salvation; but for their sudden and complete overthrow, in the words, "Thither cause to come down with violence thy mighty ones, O Yahweh!" Nor will Joel's prayer be in vain; for, referring to the same crisis, Zechariah says, "Yahweh Elohim shall come in, and all the Saints with thee" (ch. 14:5). This coming in to Jerusalem will be with violence, and a terrific outpouring of wrath upon the multitudes in arms. In the words of Ezek. 38:18, "Adonai Yahweh saith, my fury shall come up in My face: for in my jealousy and in the fire of My wrath have I spoken, surely in that day there shall be a great shaking in the land of Israel -- and all the men that are upon the face of the land shall shake at my presence, and the mountains shall be thrown down, and the towers shall fall, and wall shall fall to the ground. And I will call for a sword against Gog throughout all my mountains saith Adonai Yahweh: every man's sword shall be against his brother. And I will plead against him with pestilence and with blood; and I will rain upon him and upon his bands and upon the many peoples that are with him, an overflowing rain, and great hailstones, fire and brimstone". Thus, Yahweh goes forth and fights against these multitudes, as in the days of old (Zech. 14:3). Showing the possible site of Hamonah, the City of the Dead, in contrast to the Temple, the City of the Living (Ezek. 39:11, 16). Such is the Harvest of the Earth, and its reaping. John looked, and beheld it in symbol. He saw "a white cloud" -- a cloud of mighty ones habited in fine linen, white and clean, which represents the righteousness of them who are clothed with it (ch. 19:8, 14). A cloud indicates a multitude; and such a cloud, when looked upon in reference to its intrinsic excellence, would look white to the eye of faith. "All the Saints with Yahweh Elohim" are "Yahweh's mighty ones," numerically represented by 144,000; these are the white cloud, or Cherub, upon which the Spirit rides (Psa. 18:10); or, in the language of the Apocalypse, "upon which one like to a Son of Man is sitting". Here the Spirit sits upon the white cloud; while, in ch. 10, he is "clothed with a cloud". This tenth chapter is introductory to the fourteenth. The Ancient of Days must descend from heaven before he can be "clothed with a cloud," or ride upon a cloud, of Saints, now sleeping in the dust. Hence, the scene beheld represents events subsequent to the descent of Christ Jesus, and the resurrection and immortalization of the 144,000; and before they obtain possession of the Holy City. This is the epoch of the vision; and synchronizes with the concluding period of the Sixth Vial, and coeval with the gathering of the kings of the earth and their armies "into the place called in the Hebrew tongue Armageddon" (ch. 16:16). The "one like the Son of Man" sits upon the cloud, "having upon his head a golden stephanos," rendered crown, but not a diadem. This indicates that he is the Generalissimo of the cloud of mighty ones; but not yet in possession of David's diadem, removed from David's house, when Zedekiah, the profane, wicked prince of Israel, was abased by Nebuchadnezzar (Ezek. 21:26). The stephan indicates that he is going to compete for a prize, which he has not as yet acquired. If he had been seen with a diadem upon his head, it would have implied that he was the ruling monarch of one kingdom at least; or that such was his destiny. On the contrary, the scene before us exhibits him in the outset of his military career, whose course will be that of a strong man to run and win a race (Psa. 19:5). The prize set before him is, not one, but diademata polla, many diadems (ch. 19:12): and these he acquires by "the energy whereby he is able to subdue all things to himself". He transfers the diadem from the ten horns to his own head, when their kingdoms have become his by right of conquest. He is then seen sitting no longer on a cloud, but "upon a throne set in the heaven," the throne of his father David, which Yahweh Elohim hath given him (ch. 4:2; Luke 1:31-33). The sharp sickle in his hand is symbolical of his power to reap down the multitudes which have assembled on the valley or plain of their destruction. The sword called for throughout the mountains of Israel, their mutual slaughter, the pestilence, overflowing rain of hailstones, fire, and brimstone, the panic and blindness of the horses, and the madness of their riders (Zech. 12:4; 14:12-15) -- all illustrate the sharp sickle cast upon the earth for its reaping at the appointed hour. "And the earth was reaped" -- the "Little Horn of the Goat; the King of Fierce Countenance is broken without hand; the Image of Nebuchadnezzar is smitten by the stone; the Gog Multitude is prostrate upon the mountains of Israel; the King of the North hath come to his end without anyone to help him; and Judah is delivered from the Assyrian by the Bethlehem-born Ruler of Israel, whose goings forth are from of old, from everlasting (Micah 5:2-7; Dan. 11:45; 8:9, 23, 25; 2:34). This confederacy against the East is shivered to pieces as a potter's vessel, and Jerusalem is delivered. From henceforth she will be no more trodden under-foot of the Gentiles; nor will the uncircumcised and unclean be permitted to enter. Zion hath now put on her strength; and Jerusalem her beautiful garments. She is no longer rebellious against her King, but blesses him as her Redeemer who hath come in the name of Yahweh. She had thrown open wide her gates, that the King of Glory, Yahweh Tz'vaoth, strong and mighty in battle, might enter in. Standing with his feet upon the Mount of Olives, he beholds the Passover fulfilled in the kingdom -- the Assyrian is slain, Zion is redeemed, and the Lamb with the 144,000 stand upon her holy mount: "Henceforth Jerusalem shall be holy, and no strangers shall pass through her any more" (Joel 3:17). 12. The Vintage of the Earth 17. "And another angel came out from the Nave, which is in the heaven, he having also a sharp sickle. 18. And another angel came out from the Altar, having power over the fire, and he shouted with a great outcry to him having the sharp sickle, saying, Thrust in thy sharp sickle, and cut off the clusters of the earth, for her grapes are fully ripe. 19. "And the angel cast his sickle into the earth, and cut off the vine of the earth, and cast it into the great winepress of the wrath of the Deity. 20. "And the winepress was trodden without the city, and blood came out from the winepress unto the bridles of the horses for a thousand six hundred furlongs". "And another angel came out of the Nave." This is the same form of expression as in the fifteenth verse. The word "another" in verse 15 implies, that the one sitting upon the cloud was an angel, or Messenger-Power, also. The angel of the seventeenth verse is, doubtless, identical with the symbolic Son of Man. This is to be inferred from the fact, that they both have possession, or command, of a sharp sickle. The power of the sickle is vested in the Commander-in-Chief, who executes, through his officers and brigades, the behests of the Supreme Power. In verse 17, the holder of the sickle is styled an angel; and "another" in relation to the one on the cloud, who reaps the harvest, because the situation of the sickling executive is changed. Thus the symbolic Son of Man, "whose voice is as the sound of many waters" (ch. 1:13-16), sickled the harvest for the purpose of "opening a door," through which the mighty ones of the Spirit, the Elohim of Israel, might enter in the heaven, and set up a throne therein -- ch. 4:1-2. In this work, or labor, they succeeded gloriously. They opened a door, entered amid the acclamations of the people, planted themselves on Mount Zion, and established the throne of the Deity, before and around which they circle in faultless myriads (ch. 14:1, 5). But, the other angel that sickles the vine of the earth comes out of the Nave "which is in the heaven". The angel power of the harvest and vintage belongs to the Nave, or temple, in most holy manifestation; but between the advent and the harvest, it is the Nave "which is not in the heaven;" while after the harvest and before the vintage it is "the Nave which is in the heaven", or "Air," where it will continue evermore. The reaping of the harvest of the earth, which puts the saints in possession of "the City of the Great King," is only the beginning of national judgment. It is the smiting of the Babylonian Image upon its Russo-Gogian clayey feet by the stone-power. This shatters its homogeneity as a political organization under one imperial ruler. But though the continuity of its political elements is broken, the dynasties represented by the gold and the silver, the brass, the iron and the clay, of the image, do still exist; so that the work remaining for the mighty ones of the Spirit is that of reducing the broken fragments of the Image to the condition represented by the chaff of the summer threshing floors, which the wind carries away into nonentity (Dan. 2:35). This is the work of the vintage in its simplest illustration. The harvest and the vintage of the earth are still further distinguished in Daniel's vision of the Four Beasts of the Great Sea, in ch. 7. First, there is the slaying of the Fourth Beast; a process, the beginning of which is the harvest; then, there is the destroying of his body in the burning flame; and the taking away of the dominion of the other three Beasts; which consummates "the judgments written", and constitutes the Vintage of the Earth, which the angel Son of Man with the sharp sickle is to gather and to tread without the city. But, before this angel issues forth from the heaven, the proclamation of the aionian gospel is made through midheaven -- verse 7. It announces, that "the Hour of the Judgment," or the time of the treading of the winepress by the angel is come. When these causes and its result are manifested, it is found that the political organization symbolized by "the Beast and the False Prophet," "the King of the Earth," and "the Ten Horns," making in the aggregate the Powers "within" and "without" the great city Babylon -- refuse to comply with the demands; in evidence of which, "the Beast and the kings of the earth and their armies, gather together to make war with the Lamb and them that are with him" (ch. 19:19; 17:14). Affairs having arrived at this crisis, the Deity determines to exercise forbearance no longer. This decision is evinced by another angel coming out of the temple from the altar, having power over fire (verse 18). The angel is said to come out "from the altar". He issues thence as the avenger of those whose blood had been poured out beneath it. Hence, the altar is symbolical of the apostles, prophets, and saints, and of all slain upon the earth, for the witness of Jesus, and the word of the Deity (ch. 17:6; 18:20, 24; 6:9, 10; 20:4). All of these, accepted at the tribunal, are constituents of the avenging minister. They live again; and judgment being given unto them, they have "power over fire" -- over that fire with which Babylon is utterly burned (ch. 18:8); that, into which the Beast and the False Prophet are cast alive (ch. 19:20); that, with which the worshippers of the Beast and his Image are tormented (ch. 14:10): that, which is mingled with the crystal sea; and that, the smoke of which ascendeth to the end of the "sixteen hundred furlongs". This is the "fire," or "wrath of the Deity poured out unmixed in the cup of His indignation," at their command. Their tribulations, sufferings and down-treading, have continued and accumulated for ages and generations; so that the cry for vengeance in the day when the Deity avenges his elect, is truthfully represented as the shout of a great outcry. The cry of Abel's blood, though faint as that of one man, was loud enough to reach the ear of Deity; hence the loudness of the cry proceeding from the angel of the altar, is not because the avenger is hard of hearing, but symbolical of the multitudes to be avenged -- "a great multitude which no man can number;" "a great cloud of witnesses," of whom the world is not worthy (ch. 7:9; Heb. 12:1; 11:38). But the Angelhood of the Altar, though possessing power over the fire, does not apply it to judicial purposes of its own accord. It appeals to the Angel of the Sickle, the Head of which is Christ the Lord. He being the Commander-in-Chief, all things await his mandate. Hence, the loud outcry must be understood, not as a command, but as an entreaty, that he would now "thrust in his sharp sickle, and gather the clusters of the vine of the earth". Remembering their former sufferings in the flesh, which they endured without retaliation; and seeing that the day of vengeance has come, and that they are now in power, they long to begin the work of vindicating the truth, which cost many of them their lives, by overthrowing Babylon, destroying the Beast, and grinding to powder the broken fragments of the Image, so that these evil and accursed powers being abolished, they may enter upon "the rest that remaineth for the people of God", in which there is abundant peace so long as the sun and moon endure. "The Vine of the Earth" is a phrase representative of the civil, military, and ecclesiastical, constitution of what is called "Christendom". The grapes of this vine are the nations clustered together into empires and kingdoms upon it. To gather the clusters of the vine is to cause the armies of the nations to assemble together for war, so that they may be cut off and trodden down. Wherever the trampling of them occurs, there is the winepress into which they are cast -- "the great winepress of the wrath of the Deity". The great outcry shouted forth by the Angel of the Altar is promptly responded to by the Angel of the Sickle, who puts his forces into motion against the enemy. The sickle he handles in the sanguinary vintage of the earth, is "the Remnant of Jacob" who are then "among the Gentiles in the midst of many peoples as a lion among the beasts of the forest, as a young lion among the flocks of sheep; who, if he go through, both treadeth down, and teareth in pieces, and none can deliver. And I will execute vengeance in anger and fury upon the nations such as they have not heard" (Micah 5:8, 15). Such is the instrumentality of the Spirit in the down-treading of the wine press. Judah and Israel in their dispersion are handled by the King of the Jews as his sword, bow, arrow, battle-axe, sickle, fan, and so forth. "Behold," saith the Spirit in Isaiah 41:15, "I will make thee a new sharp threshing instrument having teeth; thou, worm Jacob, shalt thresh the mountains (empires), and beat them small, and shalt make the hills (lesser states) as chaff. And thou shalt fan them, and the wind shall carry them away, and the whirlwind shall scatter them; and thou shalt rejoice in Yahweh, and shalt glory in the Holy One of Israel". This has never come to pass since it was written. It will, however, assuredly be fulfilled, when He who hath been raised up "shall come upon princes as upon mortar, and as the potter treadeth clay" (v. 25). And in Psa. 44 they say, "Thou art He, O Elohim, my King: command thou deliverances for Jacob. Through thee will we push down our enemies: through thy Name will we tread them under that rise up against us". Then "the righteous shall rejoice when he seeth the vengeance: he shall wash his feet in the blood of the wicked: so that a man shall say, Verily, there is a reward for the righteous: verily there is Elohim judging the earth" (Psa. 58:10, 11). Jesus and his Brethren in command of the twelve tribes of Israel, are the Sickle of the Spirit by which he cuts off the vine of the earth, and treads its clusters in the great winepress of Divine wrath. Behold them all in battle array in ch. 19:11-16! There is the Faithful and True One, the Commander of the forces, who makes war in righteousness; His brethren in arms, who are "the called, and chosen and faithful;" and their hosts, the horses they ride, and the sharp sword of their warfare. These constitute the instrumentality symbolized in ch. 14 by the Angel of the Sickle who treads the winepress. This is evident from the fact that his mission is the same as theirs, which the reader may see by comparing verse 19 of this chapter with verse 15 of the former, where it is written "He treadeth the winepress of the fierceness of Almighty God". Thus, those who "go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall, tread down the wicked: for they shall be ashes under the soles of their feet in the day that I shall do, saith Yahweh Tz'vaoth ". 13. The Bridles of the Horses The winepress of Divine wrath is trodden "without the City." That is, the fearful judgments to be manifested will not be confined to the Ten-Streeted Babylon, which is geographically bounded by the Rhine, the Danube, and the Euphrates, the English Channel, and the Atlantic. There are extensive regions beyond, or "without," these limits, equally obnoxious to the "fierceness and wrath of Almighty God". "Without the City" there is Germany, in its largest sense, styled by Ezekiel "Magog", upon which, saith Adonai Yahweh, "I will send a fire". This Magog, or land of Gog, will include Prussia, Holland, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Russia, and Poland. "Without the City" also are "them that dwell carelessly in the isles", among whom the fire is to be sent also. These isles will include the dominions of Great Britain, that may not obey the proclamation in midheaven commanding obedience to the King of Israel. "Without the City" also there are Canada and its sister provinces the United States, Mexico, all South America, the Chinese Empire, Central Asia, Persia, Arabia, Abyssinia, and Egypt. All these countries, which include what Daniel styles, "the Rest of the Beasts," in ch. 7:12, the Lion, the Bear, and the Leopard, are all to be visited with "the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God;" which results in "taking away their dominion," though not in extinguishing their political existence, which continues "for a season and a time," or 1000 years. All these are "cast into the great winepress of the wrath of God," when, having destroyed the Great City of Ten Kingdoms, in its threefold dominion of the Seventh Vial, they are trodden in the judgments of the winepress "without the City". The reader may easily conceive what an immense shedding of blood is implied by such a vintage as this. It is "the supper of the great God" prepared for the fowls of the heaven, who fill themselves with "the flesh of horses, and of them that sit upon them". The phrase "oceans of blood;" as expressive of the quantity shed in these extensive warlike operations of the Saints, or Angel of the Sickle, would hardly be an exaggeration. The blood which flows from the down-trodden armies of the nations, is represented as ascending to "the bridles of the horses for a thousand six hundred furlongs". This taken literally, would be about five feet deep, and two hundred miles long; but how broad we are left to imagine. But, as the literal is only symbolical of the real in this most ingeniously-devised prophecy, we need only inquire, what is signified by the phrase "came out of the winepress even unto the bridles of their horses". The winepress judgments being identical with "the Supper of the Great God," which consummates the binding of the Dragon in the abyss, the terms of the one are expletive of the terms of the other. Hence, the more concise phrase, "the bridles of the horses," is interpreted by the words in ch. 19:18, "the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them" -- of them that hold the bridle. Thus the word bridle comes to represent the rider of the horse. Blood does not flow from the horses only; but the fierceness of the wrath falls also upon the bridle-men, or "bridles," who govern and manoeuvre them in battle; it comes even unto them. The armies within and "without the city" have large cavalry contingents, in which the kings and mighty of the nations pride themselves greatly. The governments, however, "without the city" can bring more cavalry into the field than those within it. In the constitution of the Asiatic armies it so preponderates as to be a characteristic. This is illustrated in ch. 9:16. But "a horse is a vain thing for safety; neither shall he deliverany by his great strength" (Psa. 33:17). This will be found to be true in the time of this terrible vintage. When Judah and Israel, as the Angel's Sickle, shall tread down their enemies in the mire of the streets in the battle, because Yahweh is with them, the riders on horses, the bridles, shall be ashamed (Zech. 10:5). "In that day, saith Yahweh, I will smite every horse with terror, and his rider with madness, -- and every horse of the peoples with blindness" (ch. 12:4). "With thee, O Israel, I will break in pieces the horse and his rider" (Jer. 51:21): "and the horses and their riders shall come down, every one by the sword of his brother" (Hag. 2:22). What a terrible visitation will this be upon a cavalry force -- the horses all terror-stricken, and therefore wild and utterly unmanageable; rushing against and kicking each other in fury and blindness! This alone would be fearful; but the horror is increased by the multitude of mounted and dismounted bridlemen in the melee, being all smitten with madness; so that "the bridles of the horses" are useless in their hands. In this way, the fierceness and wrath of the Deity comes out even to the bridles of the horses. What is not consummated by this mutually destructive mass of infuriate flesh, Israel will be on hand to finish. As the fowls of the heaven, they will devour them; and their sword will be filled with their flesh. 14. Sixteen Hundred Furlongs This "thousand six hundred furlongs" is a great Apocalyptic puzzle. Is it a measure of territorial surface, a measure of length without breadth and depth; or is it such a measure of length, representative of a measure of time? It cannot be taken in the sense of territorial measurement, because this would require a continuous line of cavalry two hundred miles long; and whether in single file, or broadly massed, cannot be told. Such an exposition would not be reasonable; nor is there anything in the prophets to justify it. The winepress is not a locality sixteen hundred furlongs in length; but the aggregate of the wrath of the Deity, affecting all the nations "without the city". Wherever there is a nation, kingdom, or republic, beyond the limits of "the Great Babylon," to be trodden down, there is the winepress, though it may be ten thousand furlongs from Jerusalem. The question, then, in relation to the treading of the winepress is not where, but how long? How long is the smoke of the torment "from the glory of the Deity, and from his power" to ascend? In the eleventh verse the answer is eis aionas aionon, unto aeons of aeons. This reminds one, that "it is the glory of the Deity to conceal a thing; but the honor of kings is to search out a matter". This answer, it is true, reveals the how long. It is to continue till the commencement of "the Economy of the fullness of times," commonly styled the Millennium: but still the question remains to be solved, How long from the reaping of the harvest of the earth by the Son of Man upon the white cloud, which puts the saints in possession of Mount Zion, and the end of the judgments when the Millennial Economy begins? The answer before us is "a thousand six hundred furlongs" off, that is, a time of this length is the square of the time to be occupied in the execution of the judgment given, or committed, to the saints. This principle of the square, traditionally incorporated in Masonry, is a specialty of revelation, from the Aaronic breastplate of judgment, to "the city that lieth foursquare". The measure of its wall, which is 144 cubits is the square of 12, obtained by multiplying 12 by itself -- 12 x 12 = 144. The like treatment applied to the sixteen hundred furlongs will show that they are the square of forty. Thus, the division of 1600 without a remainder gives 40; and 40 multiplied by 40 gives 1600 -- 40 x 40 = 1600. Here, then, is the answer in figures. The treading of the winepress by the saints in command of the armies of Israel will continue by the space of forty years, at the end of which will be reached the fulfilment of the Jubilee in the kingdom of the Deity, when every Israelite shall return to his possession and to his family (Lev. 25:9, 10). This forty years is the period of Israel's Second Exodus, in which "it shall come to pass that the Adon (Lord) shall add his hand to redeem a second time the remnant of his people which shall be left, from Assyria, and from Egypt, and from Pathros, and from Cush, and from Elam, and from Shinar, and from Hamath, and from the islands of the sea. They shall fly (as a bird of prey) upon the shoulders of the Philistines toward the west; and they shall spoil them of the east ("without the city") together; they shall lay their hand upon Edom and Moab; and the children of Ammon shall obey them. And there shah be a highway for the remnant of his people which shall be left, from Assyria; like as it was to Israel in the day that he came up out of the land of Egypt" (Isa. 11:11, 14, 16). It is clear from this testimony, that the restoration of the twelve tribes of Israel in our future is to be after the example of their ancient migration from Egypt under Moses; when "Yahweh led them through the deep, as a horse in the wilderness, to make Himself an everlasting and a glorious name (Isa. 63:12-14). Ezekiel testifies to the same thing, and cites the Exodus from Egypt, as the similitude of the manner of their deliverance from the long dispersion of the past. "As I live, saith Adonai Yahweh, I will bring you into the wilderness of the peoples, and there will I plead with you face to face. Like as I pleaded with your fathers in the wilderness of the land of Egypt, so will I plead with you, saith Adonai Yahweh" (chapter 20:33-36). But, do the prophets testify to the how long, as well as to the manner, of Israel's second exodus, or returning from the lands of their enemies to their own possession? Let us see. The spirit of Christ in Micah caused him to place on record in ch. 7:14, the supplication following: "Feed Thy people with Thy rod, the flock of Thine heritage, which dwell solitarily in the wood (or forest of nations), in the midst of Carmel; let them feed in Bashan and Gilead, as in the days of old". This is a petition praying, in effect, for the restoration of the kingdom to Israel; for their return from their present long dispersion in "the land of the enemy;" for their re-establishment as a powerful and independent nation in the holy land; for the subjugation of all kingdoms and nations to the laws and ordinances of their king. To perform this great work will require considerable time, and a great manifestation of almighty power. It consumed forty years of days "in the days of old," or "a thousand six hundred furlongs" of time, from the institution of the Passover in Egypt to its celebration in the Valley of Achor under Joshua; which was its typical fulfilment in the kingdom of God (Josh. 5:6, 10). These were "the days of the coming out of the land of Egypt" into the land of Canaan; in which Yahweh fed His people with the rod, and purged out the rebels among them, whose carcasses fell in the wilderness -- the days of the coming out, in which He made use of the twelve tribes as His soldiery in His wars against the Amalekites, Amorites, and so forth, as recorded in the earliest records of the nation. Understanding these things, the reader will perceive the meaning of the words of the oracle delivered to the prophet in answer to his petition. The Eternal Spirit replied, saying to him as the petitioner for Israel, "According to the days of thy coming out of the land of Egypt will I show unto him marvellous things". That is, as the coming out of Egypt consumed forty years; so, in causing Israel to feed in Bashan and Gilead, I will consume forty years in the marvellous works whereby it shall be effected. Thus it is that Micah testifies to the length of the period Apocalyptically represented by the sixteen hundred furlongs. These are the square of forty; and this is the number of years during which the saints will be executing the judgment written, as symbolized, not only in this fourteenth chapter, but also in the sixteenth, from the seventeenth verse to the end; in the whole of the eighteenth and nineteenth, and the twentieth to the fourth verse inclusive. These forty years are included in Daniel's "Time of the End," which is the period of transformation and transition, styled by Jesus "the Regeneration" (Matt. 19:28); and by Peter, "the times of the Restitution of all things, which the Deity hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets ap' aionos, from the aion"; or beginning of the course of things instituted through Moses (Acts 3:21). In these forty years the present constitution of the world is abolished. At the end of them there will be no armies and navies. These destructive agents will cease to exist. The vintage will have cut them off, and disbanded them as useless and demoralizing incumbrances upon society. War will be studied no more; and a general disarmament, which is now impossible, will be enforced by the all-conquering "King of the Jews," then become "the Light of the Gentiles, and the salvation of the Father to the ends of the earth" (Isa. 49:6). Babylon will have fallen with its Papacy and all the powers, temporal and spiritual, which now sustain it. They will all have "licked the dust like a serpent;" and the Deity will have performed the truth to Jacob and the mercy to Abraham which he swore to the fathers from the days of old (Mic. 7:20). DIVISION OF THE TIME PERIOD FROM CHRIST'S RETURN TO THE MILLENNIUM * Christ returns in a Jubilee year (see Heb. 11:3; Lev. 25:8-11; Isa. 61:1-3). * The Millennium commences -- 50 years later (Ezek. 40:1; cp. Lev. 25:8-11). * This period divided into: 1. 10 years' personal and national judgment culminating at Armageddon. (Based on the ten days from the sounding of the trumpet on the 1st of the 7th month to the Day of Atonement -- See Lev. 23:23-32; 1 Thess. 4:16; Rev. 15:8). 2. 40 Years' restoration and rebuilding of Israel (Mic. 7:15-20). This period divided into the Conversion of Judah (Zech. 12:7-14), and the ultimatum to the nations (Psa. 2:10-12; Isa. 14:32; Rev. 10:11; 14:7-10); a suggested period of 10 years. 3. Thirty years subjection of Catholic countries (Rev. 14:8-10; 17:12-14) and restoration of all the tribes. THE MILLENNIUM comprises one thousand years of peace (Rev. 20:6). It will commence when all nations have been brought into subjection to Christ, and Israel has been completely restored. The Temple in Jerusalem will then be opened for worship for the first time (Ezekiel 43). Publishers.