0 / 0

[Cflyleaf]

STUDIES
IN THE
SCRIPTURES

"The Path of the Just is as the Shining Light,
Which Shineth More and More
Unto the Perfect Day."

SERIES III

Thy Kingdom Come

"And the Kingdom and Dominion, and the Greatness
of the Kingdom Under the Whole Heaven,
Shall be Given to the People of the Saints of the
Most High, Whose Kingdom is an Everlasting
Kingdom, and All Dominions Shall Serve and
Obey Him." Dan.7:27; Rev. 5:10

To the King of Kings and Lord of Lords

IN THE INTEREST OF

HIS CONSECRATED SAINTS,

WAITING FOR THE ADOPTION,

—AND OF

"ALL THAT IN EVERY PLACE CALL UPON THE LORD,"

"THE HOUSEHOLD OF FAITH,"

—AND OF

THE GROANING CREATION, TRAVAILING AND WAITING FOR THE

MANIFESTATION OF THE SONS OF GOD,

THIS WORK IS DEDICATED.

"To make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery which from the beginning
of the world hath been hid in God." "Wherein He hath abounded toward
us in all wisdom and prudence, having made known unto us the
mystery of His will, according to His good pleasure which
He hath purposed in Himself; that in the dispensation
of the fulness of the times He
might gather together in one all
things, under Christ."
Eph. 3:4,5,9;1:8-10

Written in 1890 by Pastor Russell

[11]

PREFACE.

In presenting this, the third volume of the MILLENNIAL DAWN series, to those who have already read the preceding volumes, The Plan of the Ages and The Time is at Hand, we feel that we are for the most part handing it to friends; for our experience justifies us in supposing that only the friends of our God and the friends of the Truth would be interested enough to pursue the study further. To such we offer Christian greeting, and express the trust that they have made the subjects already treated their own, by a careful and prayerful examination of them in the light of God's Word, to such an extent that the “strong meat” of present truth will be not only digestible, but also palatable and strengthening—“meat in due season.”

Such readers need not be urged to read this volume connectedly, closely, critically; for we have heard from many how they have read the preceding volumes, some twice or three times, others eight, ten and even twelve times, with increasing interest and profit. Nor is this to be wondered at when we remember that, to his holy ones, God’s Word is always new every morning, and fresh every evening, and that the volumes of MILLENNIAL DAWN present [12] merely the harmonious arrangement of the teachings of the Word of the Lord.

Some have urged greater haste in the writing and publishing of the several volumes of this series, and, to a large extent, I have shared the same feelings of impatience; but my observations of the Lord’s dealings and leadings and unfoldings of his plan are gradually convincing me that he has not shared our impatience. Indeed, I can clearly trace his hand in some of the hindrances encountered, and can realize that by the delay I have been enabled to grasp the subjects more thoroughly, and to present them more fully, than if the work had been hastened more.

Not only has this delay thus worked for my good and yours, but in another way also. It has afforded time for a more thorough digestion of the truths of each volume, and thereby has given to the faithful student the very necessary preparation for that which was to follow. And not only so, but it has also given opportunity for practicing the lessons learned, and for exercising the talents of each in spreading the advancing light before others of God’s saints.

To how great an extent this use of your talents in serving the Truth has progressed, few can know, and for your encouragement, I must tell you: One hundred thousand copies of the first volume had been published before the second volume was ready; and now, before the third volume is published, the issues of the first volume have run over two hundred thousand copies, and of the second volume over thirty-six thousand copies.

These figures, however, only feebly express the thought we would impress; for other books (though very few) have had as great a run as these. The difference is that other books are generally sold through book-stores, merely as a matter of merchandise; while, there being almost no demand for such reading matter among either Christians or worldly [13] people—the former not being sufficiently awake to appreciate the deep things of God’s Word, and the latter wholly indifferent—not five hundred copies of the above two hundred and thirty-six thousand were sold through book-stores. How then, you ask, were so many disposed of?

Those who have become deeply interested in the truths therein presented have disposed of the others. Some get them in quantities and send them to their friends in all parts of the world, writing them letters to awaken their interest, so that they too may read and know the “good tidings of great joy.” Others purchase in quantities, and, taking what time they can spare each week, visit house after house and loan a copy of VOL. I. for a week or two, saying a few words to awaken or deepen an interest in the subject. One lady, beginning in a small way, has now over one hundred copies of VOL. I. constantly on loan in the hands of ever-changing readers.

Others, so situated that they can do so, have sacrificed their prospects for earthly riches, or fame, or ease, or selfish, earthly pleasures, and, accepting the arrangement of the Tower Tract Society for their mere living necessities, have left all to preach the gospel as colporteurs, seeking to put these books into the hands of God’s consecrated people everywhere. Others, unable to devote as much time as they would like to the service of good tidings, have voluntarily given financial aid to the spread of the work.

Thus, variously, some in one way and some in another, all who love and appreciate the truth are constantly serving it, and feel that they can never do enough—that they can never do all that they wish they could do to spread the knowledge and honor of so gracious a God, so mighty a Savior and so wonderful a plan of salvation for the Church and for the world. These, dear friends, are the honored agencies which God [14] is raising up to scatter these harvest truths—to reap the ripe wheat of his Church, now, in the harvest of the Gospel age, and to do a work also for the Millennial age—as it is written, “The plowman shall overtake the reaper.” To be employed by the Lord in any part of his work is certainly an inestimable favor and blessing to such as know this joy, even though they be misunderstood by others and their motives impugned by those whom the God of this world has blinded by error, superstition and selfishness.

The Scripture quotations of this volume are not always those of the common version, which is not always the best. We have followed it in the main, however, departing from it only in cases where clearness of sense demanded.

That the study of the truths herein presented may prove as great a blessing to the reader as their presentation has been to the writer and his helpmate; and that all may appreciate the fact that the real author of these jewels of truth is God, who now makes them known to such as have “an ear to hear,” at the hands of his willing servants, because the due time has come; and that each, as he hears the good tidings that God’s Kingdom is come, may thereby be strengthened and enabled to become a more faithful servant of the Lord, in heralding the truth, and in overcoming the worldly sectarian spirit of our time, is the desire and prayer of

Your servant in Christ,
CHARLES T. RUSSELL.
Allegheny, Pa., U. S. A.
May 1st, 1891.

[Ci]

"Thy Kingdom Come"

THE AUTHOR'S FOREWORD

THIS volume was written in 1890 and has since passed through many editions in many languages, and still more editions are in prospect. We have testimonials from thousands of God's consecrated people to the effect that they have, through this Volume, drunk deeply of the Fountain of Living Waters—the Word of God. We trust that the blessing will continue to flow, until finally through the Kingdom, the knowledge of the glory of God will fill the whole earth as the waters cover the depths of the seas.

Although we disclaim anything akin to inspiration in connection with these STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES, nevertheless we are glad that because we are in the dawning of the New Dispensation, the light of Truth is shining so clearly and the Divine Plan is so manifest that scarcely a word of the Volume would need to be changed if it were written today—26 years later.

The Time of the End has emphasized this more and more as the years have gone by, especially since we entered chronologically the great Seventh Day. The work of Harvest has progressed and is still progressing—even though at one time we supposed that the Harvest work would have been fully accomplished with the ending of the Times of the Gentiles. That was merely a supposition, which proved to be without warrant, for the thrusting in of the sickle of Truth and the gathering in of the ripe grain has been progressing since October, 1914, as never before. Indeed, the great World War has awakened humanity in a remarkable degree, and more independent thinking is being done than ever before. All this contributes to the breaking of the shackles of ignorance, superstition, and prejudice, and the freeing of those who desire to know and to do the Lord's will and to walk in the footsteps of Jesus.

We are glad for further opportunities of service to our great King in the gathering of the Elect to Himself, to the Truth. We are glad to see others coming into the Truth and preparing for the "Wedding." Evidently the "door" is not yet shut, although we anticipate that before a very long time—perhaps a year or two or [Cii] three—the full number of the Elect will be completed, and all will have gone beyond the Veil and the door will be shut.

We are free to say that the restoration of Israel has not been accomplished as rapidly as we had anticipated. Nevertheless, the Jews in Palestine seem to be thus far wonderfully sheltered; and doubtless many of their co-religionists in the war districts, especially in Poland, would be glad if they had gone to Palestine when they had opportunity. It is difficult to say how the conclusion of the war may affect the interests of Israel. We should be in a waiting, expectant attitude. It looks as though the trying experiences of the Jews would arouse considerable numbers of them eventually to go to their home land. We have never expected, however, that all the Jews would return thither, but rather a representative company of them, just as in the case of the return from Babylonish captivity—only about 52,000 returned, notwithstanding the great hosts that went to Babylon in the captivity.

The returning ones represent those fullest of faith in the Lord and His promises, and doubtless will be dealt with as representative of the whole. We remind our readers that when this Volume was written, the Jews themselves had little thought of going to Palestine. Now Zionism has sprung up, and has taken a deep hold upon the hearts of the Israelites. Although it was a secular Zionism at first, it has gradually turned to religious sentiment and hope.

The Great Pyramid of Egypt discussed in this Volume has not lost any of its interest to the author. Its Descending Passage still represents figuratively the downward course of mankind under the reign of sin and death. The First Ascending Passage still represents the Law Dispensation—God's Covenant with Israel made at Sinai and the course of that people under the domination of that Law. The Grand Gallery still represents the lofty heights of the teachings of Christ and His followers during this Gospel Age. The step in the upper end of the Grand Gallery still represents a marked change in the affairs of the world, lifting man to a higher plane. The connection between the top of the Grand Gallery and the spaces above the King's Chamber still represents the [Ciii] spiritual presence of our Lord in the Harvest of this Age, beginning with 1874.

We have never attempted to place the Great Pyramid, sometimes called the Bible in Stone, on a parallel or equality with the Word of God as represented by the Old and New Testament Scriptures—the latter stand pre-eminent always as the authority. We do, however, still believe that the structure of this Pyramid, so different from that of all other pyramids, was designed of the Lord and intended to be a Pyramid and a witness in the midst and on the border of the land of Egypt. (Isaiah 19:19) It certainly tells a very different story from any other art or relic handed down from its remote times.

Its wonderful corroboration of the Divine Plan of the Ages is astounding to everybody who really grasps it. It should be read with just as fresh interest as in the first edition, because its lessons have not altered or changed. We trust that new readers will get the same rich blessings from this Volume that old readers have received, and that thus we may glorify God together and rejoice in His provision of light and comfort on the way to the full ushering in of the glorious Kingdom of God's dear Son.

Messiah's Kingdom is sometimes styled the Kingdom of God, because, although it is strictly under the management of Messiah, all of its laws, regulations, judgments, etc., are in strict conformity to the Divine arrangement, which is unchangeable. Hence when we pray, "Thy Kingdom come; Thy will be done on earth even as in Heaven," our thought should be that the grand perfection of the Heavenly Father's Rule and Government is our desire and that we are hoping and waiting for the thousand-year Reign of Christ to conquer the rebellion of earth and to bring humanity back into as full accord with God as are all the angels of Heaven in their perfection.

Messiah's Kingdom has various stages of inauguration. First, in His Parousia the glorified Jesus quickens, or resurrects, the sleeping members of the Body of Christ. This is the first executive act of the Great One whom God has so highly exalted—the Heir of the great Abrahamic promise. His members must be completed before He will officially take His position as the King of the world. Assurance of this fact is given by the inspired Word: "When Christ, who is our Life, shall appear, then shall we also appear with Him in glory." (Col. 3:4) Next in order the Master [Civ] deals with the living members of His Body, the Church. As shown in the parables of the pounds and the talents, the Master's judgment concerning worthiness or unworthiness in the Kingdom must pass upon all of His consecrated ones and the full number of the Elect must be found and be glorified by the resurrection "change"—because "flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of God." (1 Cor. 15:50) Then the dominion of the world will be assumed. The glorified One will ask of the Father, and He will give Him the heathen for His inheritance and the uttermost parts of the earth for His possession. "He will rule them with a rod of iron. As the vessels of a potter shall they be broken into shivers." Psa. 2; Rev. 2:27

This revealing of the Son of Man to the world by His assumption of power and His permission of the world to pass into the great ordeal of anarchy is evidently nearing. For a little while there will be a great triumph of Churchianity, after the war. Both Catholics and Protestants will share in this triumph and both political and financial princes will encourage it, hoping for the prolongation of their own power. At that time we may expect strong opposition from Churchianity upon the true, faithful followers of Jesus, resulting in serious persecutions—perhaps even unto the death. But the triumph of Babylon will be short. Soon the sentence already pronounced will be executed and she shall fall like a great millstone into the sea—into anarchy—into destruction, never to rise again.

Not long after, according to the Bible picture, we may expect the total collapse of our present civilization. But the darkest moment of man's extremity will be God's opportunity. The Messiah, the Elect of God, will take the control and speak peace to the tumultuous peoples and bring order out of confusion, joy out of tears, praise out of despair. Thus the Kingdom of Messiah will be born in a terrible travail; but the glorious results will more than compensate for the "Time of Trouble such as never was since there was a nation." Thus we are told, "The desire of all nations shall come." Haggai 2:7

May these pages continue to be a blessing to the Lord's people and an honor to His name, is the prayer of the author,

Charles T. Russell
Brooklyn, N.Y.,
October 1, 1916