King's Business - 1949-09


THE BOOK OF REVELATION "Few of the commentaries that have been written on this profound and mysterious book are as sound and as simple as this one.” —Moody Monthly. "Recently it was my privilege to teach the book of Revelation, verse by verse, on the radio. In preparation for this series of studies, reference was made to a great many commentaries, ancient and modem. I found none more helpful for the purpose desired in this connection, than Mr. Humberd’s commentary of which this present edition is the third."—Wendell P. Loveless. 280 pages— Paper 75c, Cloth $1.25. “ The Holy Spirit,” “ Salvation Security and Assurance,” “ The Virgin Birth,” “ The Christian Home,” “ Inspiration of the Bible,” "Lessons From Jacob,” “ The Ressurrection Body,” "The Lake of Fire,” “ Crowns for Christians,” “ New Birth,” “ Image of Christ Jesus," “ Old Testament pic­ tures of the cross.” All 13 for $3.00. HUMBERD PRESS FLORA, IND.

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S ttu te C a n c C à TRUE TO THE BIBLE LITERATURE A TTRA C TIV E, Scriptural, Practical, Rea- * * sonably Priced, and True to the Bible. Now, beginning with the October quarter, the 2d year of Standard's BRAND-NEW through-the-Bible graded course for Juniors will be ready. A fascinating study, planned to win your Juniors to Christ and His church through tested educational methods. Standard offers both Graded and Uniform lesson literature for all ages, and sparkling weekly story papers. Color printing is fea­ tured in the pupils’ class papers and hand­ work aids. All are designed for the specific age group, and contain a wealth of helpful suggestions for the teacher. Use the coupon to send for samples. Examine these lessons, and convince yourself they are “ the best in the field.” ^ SAMPLES ON REQUEST

Ahis command, given by Jesus to the 11 faithful apostles, represents the turning point in the history of the world. Without money, college degrees, influence or political posi­ tion, the apostles began their work which, in 1900 years, has brought salvation and joy to millions. During the past 133 years, the American Bible Society, supported by voluntary gifts, (some in the form of Annuity Gift Agree­ ments) has distributed nearly 400,000,000 copies of the Scriptures. A beautiful new booklet, “ Your Gift that Lives” will give you the complete story. It contains 31 questions and answers about American Bible Society Annuities, pictures and stories about the work now being done by the Society in all parts of the world. May

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T h e P r e s s a n d T h e C h r i s t i a n W o r l d Children's Missionary Magazine Don Hillis, Biola missionary in In­ dia, and Dick Hillis, Biola missionary iri China, have undertaken to continue the publication of Around The World With Uncle Paul, a children’s mission­ ary magazine. The purpose of this labor of love is to foster the mission­ ary spirit in the tender hearts of Christian children. Miss Irene Mills, Box 188, Lomita, California, will fur­ nish information regarding subscrip­ tions. Youth Home Mission Conference With the motto of “ Living Christ in the Business World and Preaching Christ in Rural America,” a National Conference of Youth Home Missions, sponsored by the Christian Business and Professional Women of America, recently convened in Los Angeles. Mrs. Helen Baugh, national leader, reports excellent progress in this work par­ ticularly in small towns and rural areas where no organized church work exists. Youth Blitz A spiritual blitz in Europe in the summer of I960 by 100 Youth for Christ evangelistic teams was recently approved at the fifth Annual Youth International Convention. Teams will be composed of five young people re­ cruited from Christian colleges and Bible schools. A budget of $800,000.00 was proposed with a third of this amount going for clothing and food relief to all parts of the world. The present Youth for Christ leader is Dr. Dr. Leo H. Lehmann of Christ’s Mis­ sion, New York City, maintains a cen­ ter for dispensing gospel truth for Ro­ man Catholics throughout the United States. Recently Rev. William E. Burke and Rev. Peter J. Doeswyk concluded a three-month speaking tour through five Midwestern states with large crowds attending the meetings and tes­ tifying to the value of the messages these converted priests bring. More than 200 such services were held, reaching an estimated 75,000 people, yet not without difficulty and personal danger to the ex-priests. Belgian Bulletins An efficient and self-sacrificing spir­ itual enterprise goes on constantly in Catholic Belgium under the banner of the Belgian Gospel Mission. A pro­ gram of preaching, teaching, publish­ ing and distributing the Word of Life is carried on as well as open-air and tent work, child evangelism, young people’s camps, Bible correspondence and evening school courses. The spirit­ ual conflict has been very grim but there are many victories. S E P T E M B E R , 1 9 4 9 Robert A. Cook, of Chicago. Converted Catholic Speakers


Official Publication of The Bible Institute of Los Angeles, Incorporated

Louis T. Talbot, D.D.

Betty Bruechert Managing Editor

William W . Orr, D.D.

Editor in Chief

Associate Editor

Copyright, 1919, The King’s Business No part o f this magazine may be reproduced without permission. All Rights Reserved. Voi. 40 September 1949 No. 9

CONTENTS Editorially Speaking ................................................................................ 4 Dr. Talbot’s Question Box ........................................ ............................. 5 The Church With An Open Door, G. Coleman Luck ......................... 6 Poem, The Intercessor, Annie Johnson F lint ...................................... 7 “ Now Thee Alone” Vance Havner ........................... ........................... 8 Poem, Music, Martha Snell Nicholson ............................................... 9 What the Bible Says About Heaven, Louis T. Talbot ..................... 10 Young People—God Has the Answer! William W. O rr ................. 11 The Family Altar and “ Great Things” , Norman V. Williams ......... 13 The Bible in the News, William W. O rr ......................... ................... 14 Junior King’s Business, Martha S. Hooker; Stories— Little Corners; A Baby in a Basket-Boat, Elizabeth McE. Sh ields.. 15 Biola Family Circle .................................................................................. 18 Sunday School Lessons, Homer A. Kent, Allison Arrowood ........... 19 Young People’s Topics, Walter L. Wilson .......................................... 25 Bible Quiz, Vernon Howard ..................................................................... 25 Object Lessons, Elmer L. Wilder ..................... ....................................... 29 Picture Credits: Cover and Page 11, Eva Luoma, Cove Station, Weirton, W. Va.; Page. 15, Wilde’s Bible Pictures. SUBSCRIPTION INFORMATION—“The King’s Business” is published monthy; $2.00, one year; $1.00, six month; 20 cents, single copy. Clubs of three or more at special rates. Write for details. Canadian and foreign subscriptions 25 cents extra. It requires one month for a change of address to become effective. Please send both old and new addresses. REMITTANCES—Payable in advance, should be made by bank draft, express, or post office money order payable to “ The King’s Business.” Date of expiration will show plainly on outside wrapper or cover of magazine. ADVERTISING—For information, address the Advertising Manager, 558 South Hope Street, Los Angeles 13, California. MANUSCRIPTS— “The King’s Business” cannot accept responsibility for loss or damage to manuscripts mailed to us for consideration. Entered as second-class matter November 7, 1938, at the Post Office at Los Angeles, Cali­ fornia, under the Act of March 3, 1879. Acceptance for mailing at special rate of postage provided for in the Act of February 28, 1925, embodied in paragraph 4, section 538, P. L. and R., authorized October 1, 1918, and November 13. 1938. ADDRESS: The King’s Business, 558 So. Hope S£., Los Angeles 13, California. Page Three

program had already overflowed into apartment houses, dwellings, sheds and offices, and furthermore, in the past number of years a series of financial campaigns had netted them more than $ 1 , 000 , 000 . 00 . All of this is commendable and emula- tory, but it is to be regretted that the news item either consciously or uncon­ sciously omitted something of impor­ tance. How many souls were brought to the Lord Jesus Christ in this drive? Was this expansion the result of the faith­ ful proclamation of the old-fashioned gospel? Had there been a real heart growth in grace by the membership? Was this program of expansion positive­ ly centered around the Person of the Son of the Living God? Did the purpose of the church continue to be an unquali­ fied emphasis upon the need of the world without a Saviour and the desire to do what could be done to meet that need? This is a day of mammoth projects. Buildings are larger, bridges more mag­ nificent, highways more extensive—but as for the church of Jesus Christ, God has little interest in size. Rather, a church of two or three with Christ in the midst is greater than a huge bustling organization without Him, which means that it is without spiritual life. Soviet Missionaries W E understand that according to Samedi-Soir, a French weekly, there are now six Russian theological seminaries engaged in training 3,000 students for infiltration into all the churches throughout the world. Three of the seminaries were said to be for the training of men for Catholic and Prot­ estant countries; two were for reaching Buddhists, Confucianists, Moslems and Brahmans; the last one for the conver­ sion of Israelites. It is presumed that part of the Soviet strategy for the sub­ jugation of the world includes the en­ trance into churches by missionaries loaded with Soviet propaganda. This is worthy of deep concern on the part of the Western nations. On the other hand, the very fact that the Soviets have begun to rely upon the age-old method of propagation by mis­ sionaries is something too. When the Lord commanded His disciples to go into all the world and preach the gospel, He was giving a principle which has since proved its value in the centuries which have followed. It is sad indeed that the Christian church for the last millennium at least has failed to use the principle of missionary endeavor to the fullest. Far too many churches have merely toyed with the idea and have not sup­ ported it wholeheartedly. Were there to be a genuine dead-in-earnest application by the believing church of today to the principle of propagation by trained mis­ sionaries, it would not be long until there would be no communistic threat to the world. May God give us a revival of missionary enthusiasm that will sweep round the world, taking with it multi­ tudes into the kingdom of God. T H E K I N G ' S B U S I N E S S

Peter and the Rock Again O NE of the points of interest in the city of Rome is St. Peter’s Church, 619 feet long, 470 feet high. Its principal claim to churchly glory is the oft-repeated Roman Catholic claim that it is erected over the Apostle Peter’s tomb. For ten years the shovels of papal-appointed archaeologists have been excavating the area below St. Pe­ ter’s. Recently a report has come that tombs have been uncovered, but any statement regarding St. Peter’s grave was carefully avoided. Over one particular verse in the Scripture a great controversy has raged (Matt. 16:18). Did our Lord mean that Peter was to have a pre-eminent posi­ tion in the early church? The Roman theologians have constantly affirmed this, while the Protestants have said a positive “No.” It would seem that this question could be definitely solved by an appeal to Peter’s own testimony as given in his first letter, chapter 2, verses 1 to 8. Here: the Apostle, who had thrice denied Christ and thrice proclaimed his love for Him, speaks in words which can not hide his deep adoration of his Lord. Christ, to Peter, was the Stone, the living Stone, the chosen Stone, the pre­ cious Stone, the chief Cornerstone, the elect Stone, and to those who reject Him He is a Stone of stumbling and a Rock of offense. If these words are at all revelatory of the heart belief of the Apostle Peter, surely we are to under­ stand that Peter’s unshakable convic­ tion was that the great Rock upon which all Christianity was to be built was none other than the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. We commend to all men who are uncertain on this point, including Roman Catholics, the re-reading and meditation upon the letters of the great Apostle Peter. I T was a news item that called this to our attention. A large and influential church had just completed a fund-raising drive that netted more than $250,000.00. This money was to be subsequently used in the erection of additional educational facilities. But the news item went on to state that there was a great host of folks interested in the church; there were nearly three-score weekday activi­ ties by organizations, and the teaching A Certain Church Plans Expansion


With the opening of school in j September, The Bible Institute of j Los Angeles will offer a new course j of study accredited and recognized | by the United States Office of j Education. The addition will be | the Bible College Course which j will enable a student to receive a ! Bachelor of Arts degree in four J years. j The change comes as a result of j the foresight of the Board of Di- j rectors who are making every ef- j fort to keep abreast of the spirit- [ ual and educational needs of to- J day. The spiritual demands have | remained the same through the J years and the Bible Institute is j equipped to meet them, but the J educational requirements have ] been changing rapidly. There- J fore, it has become necessary to j enlarge the extent of training in J order to provide these degrees. j This program expansion will I affect the three schools of training i in the following way: the regular j three-year Bible Institute course j leading to a diploma will continue j as usual; the Bachelor of The- | ology degree which formerly took j four years to complete will now j be granted in five years; and a f student pursuing a Bachelor of j Arts degree can major in one of j three fields of study — Bible, j Christian Education or Music and j receive his B.A. degree in four j years. The name, “ The Bible Institute J of Los Angeles,” will remain the j same and the purposes of the Bible { Institute will not be changed. The j Bible College Course is merely an j addition to work already offered | and in no way takes the place of j that which is being taught at | present. It is significant to note j that there will be as much Bible J and related subjects taught in the j Bible College Course as are being | taught at present. As always, the j Bible Institute of Los Angeles j stands for the thorough study of j God’s Word and dedicates itself | to the task of training young j people for the work of proclaiming j the unsearchable riches of Christ j to a lost world!

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Do you think God will destroy this beautiful earth? I read in Ecclesiastes that the earth abideth forever, and yet Peter writes in the New Testament about new heavens and a new earth. Can you harmonize this? The texts in Ecclesiastes and Peter are both right: the earth will abide for­ ever, and yet it will be renewed after the thousand years’ reign of Christ. The earth will be subject to purifying—it will be made new. Every stain of sin, every mark of evil, every scar of wrong, every memory of unrighteousness, every trace of pain, of sickness, of sorrow, of death, will be washed away in that flood of judicial fire. As there has been a re­ generation for the soul, and a regenera­ tion for the body, so will there be a re­ generation for the earth. So beautiful will the earth be, that the memory of its former state will be entirely forgotten. The new heaven is necessary because even the heavens have been affected by sin. Satan was a cherub, and his fall be­ gan in the heavenlies. This is something people do not understand. Sin did not begin in the Garden of Eden, but it be­ gan in the presence of God when Luci­ fer fell. Satan left an awful slimy trail from the presence of God right down to the present time, and will continue on to the lake of fire. Why were the children of Israel moved out of their land? Could they not have offered sacrifices and confessed their sins and been forgiven? Well, God for many years did suffer their evil doings, and then they got be­ yond His merciful dealings with them. They went into idolatry with such deter­ mination that they sought to kill proph­ ets like Jeremiah who were sent to warn them, and who endeavored to turn them back to God. God allowed them to be taken to Babylon because that city was the center of world idolatry. Will you comment on euthanasia, or mercy killing? What would the Scrip­ tures teach regarding this? All the modernists are for mercy kill­ ings, and it has a social gospel color. However, no one can believe the whole Bible and believe in mercy killings. Al­ most without exception, the real Bible teachers who accept the Bible to be the Word of God, are opposed to it. S E P T E M B E R , 1 9 4 9

Dr. L. T. Talbot

(1 Cor. 10:32). Some portions of the Bible are for the Jews; some promises relate to the Gentiles; and a goodly number refer to the Church of God. This division must be kept in mind when you study God’s Word. But never fear; there are thousands of promises for all as children of God, and if they are appro­ priated, we will have no lack of any­ thing. If the devil is walking to and fro upon the earth seeking whom he may devour, doesn’t this indicate that he is omnipres­ ent? It sounds as if he were everywhere at once. Not at all. Omnipresence is an attri­ bute of Deity alone. The devil is a crea­ ture, not the Creator. He does cover the earth pretty thoroughly with the thou­ sands of demons under his control. We need to put on the whole armour of God that we may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil, but always re­ member, he is a defeated foe, and great­ er is He that is for us than he that is against us. Please explain from First Corinthians 13, the expressions, “ through a glass darkly,” “face to face,” and “when that which is perfect is come.” The apostle is speaking of the partial revelation of God that then was, as com­ pared with the full revelation that came, when John wrote the Book of Revela­ tion. When Paul wrote this Epistle to the Corinthians, the greater part of the New Testament was not in existence. Consequently, in regard to matters per­ taining to the church, they were like one looking “through a glass darkly.” “ That which is perfect” refers to the full and complete revelation given in the Book of Revelation which ended God’s written record to man. Page Five

Are all Christian believers to help Christ convert everyone who has not be­ lieved, both living and dead, at the time of the millennium, and all the unbeliev­ ing to have a chance to be saved? Some­ how I can’t believe that. There are several false cults which teach a second probation after death, and as a result of this false teaching there are tens of thousands of people who are rejecting Christ today because they have been led to believe that if they miss the call of God in this life, they will hear it and have opportunity to be saved in the next. There is not a vestige of Scripture to support such teaching. What does that expression in Gala­ tians 6:17 mean: “I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus” ? The Apostle Paul was referring to his physical sufferings for Christ which he lists in the 11th chapter of Second Cor­ inthians. These were marks of honor, and blessed is the man today who can exhibit such scars as evidences of his sufferings for the Lord Jesus Christ. Maybe some have suffered in health, in purse, and in reputation because of their Christian life, and they will find it was all worth-while when they reach the glory. Are all the promises in the Bible meant for us in this day and age? Some believe that the power given the apostles is not meant for us today. No, they are not. To attempt to lay hold upon all the promises of God would result in utter confusion of mind. The Apostle Paul divides the people of earth into three groups, when he states, “ Give none offence, neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the church of God”


Sixth in a Series of Messages on the Churches of Revelation

T HE letter to Sardis / Rev. 3:1-6) presents the sad fact that a church may be doctrinally sound but spiritually dead. However, as we turn to the letter to Philadelphia (Rev. 3:7-13) we find a much brighter picture. Christ says of this church: “ Behold, I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it,” so we may well characterize Philadel­ phia as the church with an open door. 1. The Address. “ And to the angel of the church in Phila­ delphia write—” (verse 7a). Philadelphia was founded in 189 B.C. and was therefore not so ancient as the other cities of Asia Minor mentioned in these chapters. It was destroyed by Tamerlane in 1403, but was subsequently rebuilt. The town today bears a different name from that which it formerly had. The name Philadelphia means brotherly love. As in the case of the other churches, it seems that the name of the town has a typical meaning with reference to the character of the church established there. The attitude of this church was indeed one of brotherly love. God grant that this might like­ wise be the case with your church and my church. “ By this shall all men know that yë are my disciples, if ye have love one to another” (John 13:35). 2. Description of the Lord. “ These things saith he that is holy, he that is true, he that hath the key of David, he that openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth, and no man openeth” (verse 7b). Here indeed is a beautiful description of our Lord, which is rich in spiritual application. First, He is spoken of as the One who is holy. An outstanding attribute of Deity is perfect holiness. “ Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory” (Isa. 6:3). “ Thou art of purer eyes than to behold evil, and canst not look on iniquity” (Hab. 1:13). If our God is then so holy, what is the message of His holiness for us who throügh faith are His children? Clear comes the answer: “ But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation ; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy” (1 Pet. 1:15,16). Our Saviour is also called “He that is true.” He is ever faithful and true. We too should be true to Him, and always hold fast to His truth. The Lord Jesus further describes Himself as “He that hath the key of David.” The allusion here is to Isaiah 22. In that chapter we read of Shebna, an unfaithful treasurer of the house of David. A curse is pronounced upon this treacherous man. Then we read of quite a different type of man—Eliakim, the son of Hilkiah. Eliakim apparently took over the office of treasurer when Shebna proved false. Unlike Shebna, he was a true man of God, who proved to be absolutely faithful to his trust. So of this good man the Lord says : “ And the key of the house of David will I lay upon his shoulder; so he shall open, and none shall shut; and he shall shut, and none shall open. And I will fasten him as a nail in a sure place; and he shall be for a glorious throne to his father’s house” (Isa. 22:22,23). The only key to the royal treasure house was in the possession of Eliakim, who thus had the sole authority to open and shut the door. What a beautiful type of our blessed Lord! He is the sole possessor of the key to the divine treasure house, and entrance to the marvelous blessings of God can be secured only through Him who said : “ I am the way, the truth, and the life : no man cometh unto the Father, but by me” (John 14:6). We have no merit of our own by which we can claim even the least of God’s mercies, and yet every divine blessing is ours because “He hath made us accepted in the beloved” (Eph. 1:6). A slightly diffèrent application of this familiar text may also well be made. Our Lord Jesus likewise holds the key to the doors of service and opportunity. If we are yielded to His Page Six

will, He will surely guide us to the place where He would have us to serve Him, and the utmost efforts of human beings to keep us out of that place will be all of no avail. On the other hand, He can close the door before us even as He did with Paul (Acts 16:6,7) and if He does, it is useless to attempt to press forward though the prospect seem ever so inviting. 3. Commendation of Good Works (verse 8). There is a three-fold commendation of this church by our Lord. Leaving out for the moment the parenthetical portion of verse eight, this commendation reads as follows: “ I know thy works . . . for thou hast a little strength, and hast kept my word, and hast not denied my name.” “ Thou hast a little strength.” At first glance this may seem to be small praise, but the longer we consider it the more striking it seems. After all, of which of ns could the Lord say: “ Thou hast great strength” ? So it is indeed a magnificent commendation when Christ can say of frail, weak human beings: “ Thou hast a little strength.” There was nothing about Philadelphia to attract great attention, nothing sensa­ tional to capture the newspaper headlines, but there was a quiet faithfulness that plodded steadily forward to accomplish real things for the Lord. Rest assured that the Son of God sees and appreciates such faithfulness whether in a church or in an individual life. “ Thou . . . hast kept my word.” Here undoubtedly lies the secret of this church’s accomplishments. They accepted the Word of God, but they went farther than that. They studied the Word of God in order to learn His will, but they did not even stop there. They kept the Word of God. Today we see many churches that do not even accept God’s Word—the Bible. Then again we see churches, like Sardis, which accept God’s Word, but pay no heed to it. Oh for more Philadelphias where God’s Word is so precious that it is “loved, honored, and obeyed!” Note that the singular word is used rather than the plural words. In a very real way God’s revelation is one and if it is not accepted* as a whole, then to all intents and purposes it is rejected. T H E K I N G ' S B U S I N E S S

“ Thou . . . hast not denied my jiame.” This church stood for the great truths embodied in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. Lord is the New Testament form of the Old Testament Jehovah and speaks of His deity. Jesus is His human name, received at the Incarnation, and speaks of His Humanity and Saviourhood. Christ is the Greek form of the Hebrew Messiah —the Anointed One —and is His official title as the divinely appointed Prophet, Priest, and King. Thus in His name are found the most precious and essential truths of Christianity. Already in John’s day some were denying these fundamental truths (1 John 2 :1 8 -2 3 ; 2 John 7 -1 1 ). Such was not the case at Philadelphia. To this church our Lord could say: “ Thou . . . hast not denied my name.” We must not pass on without noting the lovely parenthesis in this verse: “ Behold, I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it.” To such a church as this our blessed Saviour can open the door of God’s treasure house of spiritual blessings. He likewise opens the door of further usefulness, and “no man can shut it.” 4. Complaint. “ Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which say they are Jews, and are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them to come and worship before thy feet, and to know that I have loved thee” (versé 9). No doubt there is room for difference of opinion in the interpretation of this verse, and some may feel that it refers to a group outside the church which was persecuting it. But a more careful study will show that the reference is to the same ones mentioned in the letter to Smyrna (Rev. 2 :9 )—the Judaizers—false legalistic teachers within the professing church. These men were of the same sort as those with whom Paul contended in Acts 15. While they were in the professing church, their character and teaching revealed that they were not in the true church. These perverters of the gospel had caused trouble in Philadelphia as elsewhere, but it is predicted that they will some day be humbled as they see that God’s blessing rests not upon their own deceitful ministry, but upon the work of those who truly love His gospel of grace. 5. Exhortation. “ Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth” (verse 10). “ The word of my patience”—this phrase should be compared with Rev. 1:9—“ I, John, who also am your brother, and companion in tribulation, and in the kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ.” Note the close con­ nection between the kingdom and patience. During the present age the Kingdom of Heaven is revealed to be in mystery form (see Matt. 13). Some day the Kingdom will be manifest­ ed in all of its glory—at the coming of the King—but the days pass on and the King returns not, so patience is a necessary virtue in God’s faithful ones. Some day this patience will be rewarded. To the believers at Philadelphia (and to all true believers everywhere) Christ promises: “ I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.” This coming hour of trial is none other than the Great Tribulation, that awful period just preceding the Second Coming of Christ, which is described so graphically in Revelation 4 to 19. Thank God, those who truly belong to Christ will not have to experience this final tribulation for the “ earth-dwellers.” Before the seventieth week of Daniel begins, the Church will be caught up in the Rapture, forever to be with the Lord (see 1 Thess. 4:13-18). Later Christ’s saints will return to rule and reign with Him at His glorious Revelation. 6. Threat. “ Behold, I come quickly: hold that fast which thou hast, that no man take thy crown” (verse 11). In view of the Lord’s imminent return, Christians are warned that they should “ hold fast” lest they lose their crowns. The croums are the rewards to be given by the Lord for faithful service, in that day when “we shall all stand before the judg­ ment seat of Christ” (Rom. 14:10). Notice that Christ does not threaten true believers with the possibility of losing their salvation. There is no such possibility. But it is sadly possible for a Christian to lose his reward. “ If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire” (1 Cor. 3:14,15). What joy in that day for those who will hear him say, “ Well S E P T E M B E R , 1 9 4 9

done, good and faithful servant” ! May we all “hold fast” so that we may each one receive this most precious of all rewards —His commendation. 7. Promise. “ Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name” (verse 12). In Old Testament times, God’s temple was an earthly building of stone, wood, and other materials. Not so today. Now God’s Spirit dwells in the bodies of believers (1 Cor. 6:19) and all Christians together, throughout the entire age, form the CHURCH. “ Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house” (1 Pet. 2:5). And [ye] are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; in whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit” (Eph. 2:20-22). So all born-again ones become living stones in this spiritual building, with Christ as the “ chief corner stone” (1 Pet. 2:6). The pillars are a most important part of a temple for they must support the entire structure, and without them it would fall. Christ promises to make the “ overcomer” a “ pillar” in this “ spiritual house”—“ the temple of my God.” He further promises to write upon these victorious Chris­ tians three names. When a person writes his name upon a book or other object, it signifies possession or ownership. By such an action he shows that the object is set apart—conse­ crated—to his own use. Thus the one who truly lives for Christ has written upon him “ the name of my God”—which speaks of consecration to God—“ the name of the city of my God . . . new Jerusalem”—consecration to an heavenly calling —and “my new name” (which is KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS—see Revelation 19:16)—consecration to the King. One further word needs to be said concerning the place of Philadelphia considered typically in the prophetic outline of Church History found in Revelation 2 and 3. This is best understood in connection with the last four of these churches. Thyatira is the Roman Church of the Middle Ages and fol­ lowing—“the church of Jezebel.” Sardis represents the post­ reformation Protestant Church: orthodox in creed, but snirit­ ually dead. Philadelphia represents the faithful individual church of the last days; Laodicea, the faithless individual church. No denomination today can be commended as being entirely Philadelphian in character. Neither can any denomi­ nation be condemned as being entirely Laodicean in nature. In each denomination there are some churches like Philadel­ phia, others like Laodicea. As each of these last four letters contains a reference to the Second Coming of Christ, it is indicated that the conditions pictured in these four churches will continue on “ till He come.” Let us exert every effort that our own churches (and our own lives) may be like the church at Philadelphia. The Intercessor By Annie Johnson Flint

Infinite Wisdom and infinite Love, Praving for me to the Father above. Asking for me what Thou knowest is best— Surely my heart in this knowledge can rest. Wrapped in my darkness and ignorance here, With Thy great prayer let me not interfere; Let me not cross that petition divine, Losing a blessing that might have been mine; Teach me to pray, that Thy will, so begun, May in my life and my spirit be done. Here is my confidence, here can I rest; Thou alone knowest and askest the best.

—By permission, Evangelical Publishers.

Page Seven

By Vance Havner

sought to stir up a holier ecstasy but I was tired and the ex­ alted frame of mind just wouldn’t come. I used to make a model of Jacob at Jabbok before I learned that Jacob was not blessed till he stopped struggling and started clinging. How slow we are to learn that a lot of our “ seeking” is a form of works, glorified flesh-effort, and if we did get through to some strange experience we would ever thereafter be congratu­ lating ourselves for our persistence. There are indeed times when long hours of prayer are in order. But it is not that God must be coaxed into granting our requests. He is not slow but we are stubborn: He is not reluctant but we are rebellious. And it takes time to get still. Then there are seasons of communion as when our Lord prayed all night. But the parables of the importunate widow and the man seeking bread at midnight have been made to teach the opposite of what our Lord had in mind. The lesson is in the contrast, not the similarity. If a wicked judge would finally give in to a poor widow, will not our Father hear His own children? It took me a long time to learn that the greatest experience is to learn that God is greater than all our experiences. I had sought Him for what He could give but not for Himself. Job had to be stripped of all his things, reduced to God alone. But when he really met God, he got back more than he lost. I had rejoiced in God’s gifts, had thanked Him for them, but the question came, Did I love God for Himself? If my health, my work, my loved one were taken, would I rejoice in the Lord and still joy in the God of salvation? I was just a fussy little Christian making a Santa Claus out of my Heavenly Father. Satan asked, “ Doth Job fear God for nought?” I won­ dered whether I did. Was I a Christian just because it “paid” ? Could I really sing “Now Thee alone I seek, Give what is best” ? Did I love God for His gifts or was He himself my “ex­ ceeding great reward” ? How I rejoiced in my calls, my work, my preaching! But suppose these failed, would my springs be dried up? And did I really love Jesus or did I just hate the deeds and doctrines of the Nicolaitanes? (Sometimes we hate the Nicolaitanes!) Blessed is the man who gets beyond all God does for him to rejoice in what God is and to love God for Himself. Then T H E K I N G ' S B U S I N E S S

“Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labour of the olive shall fail, and the fields 8hall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls: yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation” (Hab. 3:17, 18). H ABAKKIIK._ha44earned a lesson few of us ever master; TieTiad reached a point where not many mortals ever ar­ rive: he had learned to find his joy in God instead of in cir­ cumstances. That is a trite enough phrase and we roll it un­ der our tongues, but getting through to it in actual experi­ ence is something else again. A lot of breath has been spent and ink used up trying to explain the meaning of the book of Job. Whatever else it teaches, it shows us another man like Habakkuk who started out wanting explanation and ended with revelation — and when he really met God he did not need explanation for “Why?” was swallowed up in “ Whom.” We begin the book with a man blessed with many things from God: we finish with Job blessed in God Hifiiself. We are reminded of Jacob who first named the place of his blessing the House of God but came back later to call it the God of the House of God. God had become more important than any place or experience. And of course we think of Peter who wanted to house his vision in three tabernacles but later looked up to see “ Jesus only.” *, For many years of my life I was much occupied with places and experiences. I set up a stone to mark the spot where I made my profession of faith in Christ. Of course there is nothing wrong in Jacob setting up his pillow as a pillar but sacred spots easily become shrines regarded with too much veneration. Symbols become sinful as, even the brazen serpent became an idol. I was always trying at some place or time to secure an experience that would make me feel just right, an­ swer all my questions and allay all my fears. I remember how once I left my church and took a train for a little town deep in the mountains. I spent an afternoon praying in a deserted schoolhouse but didn’t find my “ experience” and came back rather crestfallen. Again I went to my old home in the hills and in my hide-out in the woods sought to reach the mood I craved. Later in Florida one winter I took long walks and Page Eight

The words of Habakkuk find something of an echo in the New Testament in the words ®f Peter. Habakkuk said, “AL­ THOUGH conditions may not be favorable YET I will re­ joice in God.” Peter wrote of Jesus Christ “Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, THOUGH now ye see him not, YET believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory.” The only way to master the ALTHOUGH is to major in the YET. The man whose life concern is to know God and enjoy Him forever makes it his life business just to glorify God. How that simplifies matters! Instead of feverishly striking out in all directions with too many irons in the fire and none of them hot, his prayer is simply “ Glorify Thy Name.” Not that such a life is easy. One had better be careful about praying that prayer for God will take him up on it and God has strange ways of getting glory to Himself, as in sickness with Lazarus and by death in the case of Peter. But he who is truly satisfied with God and God’s will and glory will not be disturbed by the things that agitate the rest of us. Success or failure, popularity or obscurity, high feelings or low, poverty or wealth, all the fluctuations of life by which most of us measure ourselves, are neither here nor there. God is every­ thing. Whether or not the fig tree blossoms is incidental; we always have God. And whatever pleases Him pleases us. Of course the old nature rebels and such a blessed state is not reached overnight. But it is the life our Saviour lived and it will be the way we live when He reigns within. And how our Father must prize the fellowship of those who seek not merely His gifts but Himself! A business man whose job was to write checks all day long heard a knock at his door late in the afternoon. His little son came in just to be with his father. The tired man sighed to himself, “How good to have one person come in who is not so interested in the checks I write as in me!” How often do we call at the Heav­ enly Office, not for gifts, but to be with the Giver? “ Now Thee alone I seek, Give what is best.”

God truly becomes his portion. He ceases to dig in the rub­ bish of his own poor heart for satisfaction and makes his home in God. He learns what A. B. Simpson learned after many “ experiences” : “ Once it was the blessing, Now it is the Lord; Once it was the feeling, Now it is His Word; Once His gift I wanted, Now the Giver swn; Once I sought for healing, Now Himself alone.” There will indeed be precious places and experiences. Bethel is not ruled out but the Person becomes more important than the Place. We live not in what we think or how we feel, we abide in Him. We fall back exhausted into the Everlasting Arms and find they were there all the time we were holding on for dear life. We learn with Phoebe Palmer that when we give all trying over, simply trusting we are blessed. We are not occupied with our faith but with the Faithful One. There is no end to this feverish quest of experiences. If the thrill does not come, we are plagued with thinking, “ If I had held on a little longer, maybe I would have got through!” If it does come, it wears oif and there is no way to preserve it. Peter’s vision did not come down the mountain but his Lord did and what we want is not to tell merely what we saw on the mountain but to have One who can come down the moun­ tain with us. When God is our portion we can rejoice with Habakkuk in a depression. Instead of taking pride in how faithful we are— and we will be more faithful than ever—we will glory in His faithfulness. We will realize that we do not have to be think­ ing about God all the time in order to love Him any more than we think about our loved ones all the time. We shall not gauge our state by our emotions, having learned what liars our feelings can be and that we are often nearest God when we imagine we are farthest from Him.

M U S I C These lovely sounds my ears have heard: The rapture of a mockingbird, The singing of a meadow stream, Its murmuring like a placid dream; Softly whispering, the breeze Sighing through the listening trees, The simple homely sounds of earth, A cricket chirping on the hearth, A newborn baby’s first weak cry, A mother’s twilight lullaby To children clustered at her knee. A bugle calling reveille. A violin’s heart-breaking strain, The melody of falling rain. All this is not enough— I long For music sweeter than the song The morning stars together sang Till heaven’s farthest arches rang: These ears of mine, unsatisfied, Await His voice, “ Come home, My bride!”

—Martha Snell Nicholson July, 1949

S E P T E M B E R , 1 9 4 9

Page Nine

Fourth and Final in a Series o f Messages

By Louis T. Talbot, D.D.

I N three previous articles I have en­ deavored to answer questions about Heaven from the Word of God per­ taining to its reality, its location, its na­ ture, and its enjoyments and employ­ ments. Now we bring under the lens of Holy Writ three final questions, the last of which is the most important: “How Can One Go to Heaven ?” We trust that if we have one reader who does not know the way, he may find it ere he completes the reading of this message. Is There an Intermediary State? The question may be asked: “ Does a believer go immediately to Heaven at the moment of death?” The Lord said to the believing thief on the cross, “ To day shalt thou be with me in paradise” (Lk. 23:43). When the stones were crushing the life from the body of Stephen, the first Christian martyr, to him the Heav­ ens were opened, and he saw his Saviour “ standing on the right hand of God” (Acts 7:56). He then cried out in joyful certainty of being at once with Him: “ Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” The Scriptures plainly teach that the passing of the redeemed spirit from the body does not for one moment arrest consciousness, but that, immediately one is “ absent from the body,” he is “pres­ ent with the Lord” (2 Cor. 5:8). This text disposes of a whole brood of un­ wholesome, unscriptural surmises, theo­ ries, fears, and doubts: “ Absent frpm . . . ¿resent with.” There is no room here for the theory of soul sleeping or of purgatory. And, beloved, this teaching is in ac­ cord with all the Scriptures. There is, for example, no waiting in order to re­ ceive salvation: “He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life” (John 5:24). Consider another illustration. A poor beggar, covered with sores, dies at a rich man’s gate. The body is hurried away to the potter’s field, no doubt, but nothing is said of the body, because the Lord is so eager to tell us where the beggar himself is! We read in Luke 16:22: “ The beggar died,” — that is what any passer-by might observe. But look! The veil is parted, for we continue to read, “ and was carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom.” One in­ stant he was a despised beggar with only the dogs to pity him; the next, he was regnant, with angels as his willing servitors! And then the word comes like clear, sweet music: “ Lazarus . . . is com­ forted.” “Absent from . . . present with.” Page Ten

His was an immediate entrance into the presence of the Lord. In Philippians 1:23, Paul declares: “ For I am in a strait betwixt two, hav­ ing a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better.” Note those words, “ depart, and to be” —where? Is he to be in a state of soul sleep, or to enter for a period of soul purification into the flames of purga- tery? No, no! For Paul, to depart from this life meant “ to be with Christ.” And for you, to depart from your beloved fellow-believers means the same thing— “to be with Christ.”

tanic. The evening of the catastrophe, Dr. Harper was standing on the deck with a friend, watching the sunset. The heavens were aglow and the picture they presented was one that only God could paint. Harper turned to his friend and said, “ It will be beautiful in the morn­ ing!” The words were almost prophetic. A few hours later, the great liner struck an iceberg, and Dr. Harper went into the Saviour’s presence from the deck of the sinking ship. But for him, “ the morning” was indeed “ beautiful.” And there is a glad and glorious morning ahead for every child of God. It will dawn when the Lord shall descend, when the bodies of believers that sleep in Christ shall awake, and when we which are alive and remain shall be caught up to meet the Lord (1 Thess. 4:13-19). “ It will be beautiful in the morning!” W hy Does Not God Permit The Saved on Earth to Communicate with The Saved in Heaven? We believe that Heaven is real. We believe also that the believers who die go to be with a real Lord in a real place. Why, then, does God not strength­ en our faith by giving us a realistic touch and contact with those saints who have left this earth? Spiritism claims to answer this ques­ tion and professes that the living may have communication with the dead. Se­ ances are held and actual “ appearances” are claimed to have occurred. Christian people usually mock at these spiritual­ istic claims, saying that there is nothing to them but fraud and trickery. But God would not have given us the warn­ ings that He has given in the Bible against spiritism if it were harmless (cf. Deut. 18:9-12; Isa. 8:19, 20; 1 John 4:1-3). What is in it? We answer that the devil is in it, and his demons are a part of it. Satan is an impersonator. He will de-. vise all kinds of lying wonders, and signs, and miracles to deceive, if possi­ ble, the very elect. We cannot now dis­ cuss at length the ruination of mind and health that have come to many who have tried to pierce the veil that hides things after death. This much we do say: All such attempts bring the seek­ ers into contact with Satan and his powers of the air—an experience which cannot but create disastrous effects to the person who indulges in it. There­ fore, let us beware of necromancers, wizards, spiritualistic mediums, all of whom seek to enter forbidden realms. (Continued on Page 16) T H E K I N G ' S B U S I N E S S

The expression, “ soul sleep,” is not in the Bible, and what it implies is not taught in the Bible, either. The word “ sleep” applies only to the body of a believer which awaits the return of the Lord to be raised and fashioned like unto His glorious body. Our loved ones are in the presence of the Lord now— conscious, glad, praiseful. When the Lord Jesus Christ descends from Heaven with a shout, the departed spirits of be­ lievers will descend with Him. Their bodies will be raised—immortal, glori­ fied—and they will assume these bodies. At the same time, living believers shall be “ caught up”, their bodies also in­ stantly changed, and all will meet the Lord in the air. What a morning that will be! When John Harper, the well known English evangelist, was journeying to America to conduct an evangelistic cam­ paign in the Moody Church of Chicago, he was a passenger on the ill-fated Ti­

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