THE EASTERN QUESTION.
The "eastern question," from a Bible standpoint, is based mainly on Rev. 16: 14: "And the sixth angel poured out his vial upon the great river Euphrates; and the waters thereof were dried up, that the way of the kings of the east might be prepared. And I saw three unclean spirits, like frogs, come out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet; for they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth unto the kings of the earth, and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty."
Here we learn that before the beginning of the gathering of the kings of the east, and of the whole world, to that battle, the waters of mystic Euphrates must be dried up. Hence, in order to interpret correctly these events, the first question to settle is who, or what are the "waters of the Euphrates"? The generally accepted interpretation is that they refer to the Mohammedans; but I think we shall be able to overthrow this view, which is based solely on the accepted fact that the Ottoman empire is referred to under the sixth trumpet, as "the four angels bound in the great river Euphrates." But by a reference to page 138, it may be seen that although admitting "the four angels bound in the great river Euphrates," refer to the Mahommedans, a far more reasonable interpretation of "the Euphrates," can be found.
The Greek, here rendered in, in the Euphrates, is one out of fourteen different words translated in; and in Rev. 1 : 7, the same word [epi] is rendered because of, — "shall wail because of him. The word is also rendered before, — "before Pontius Pilot," (1 Tim. 6: 13); "Before two or three witnesses," &c. "The four angels bound be-
cause of [or before] the great river Euphrates," is clearly the true rendering here. For the application of the Euphrates to the Christian nations is in harmony with every part of the prophecy. If the "four angels, who were prepared for an hour, and a day, and a month, and a year, for to slay the third part of men," refer to the Mohammedans, that in which, or because of which, they were bound, cannot refer to themselves. And it is a well known fact it was the christian powers who held the Mohammedans in check, so long as they were held; and that it was the decay of the Roman power which enabled them at last to possess themselves of that third of the empire, now called Turkey in Europe. If they were bound because of the great river Euphrates, and when, from internal strife, the Christian powers could no longer oppose them, "the four angels were loosed," and immediately possessed themselves of Constantinople and the east; to what can the waters of the Euphrates refer, if not to the christian nations? Certainly no one can be so simple as to suppose the Mohammedans bound themselves.
Literal Babylon was built upon literal Euphrates, and is thus spoken of: "O thou that dwellest upon many waters, abundant in treasures, thine end is come," (Jer. 51: 13); and of mystic Babylon it is said: "I will shew unto thee the judgment of the great harlot that sitteth upon many waters," (Rev. 17: 1). When Cyrus dried up the waters of the Euphrates, by turning the river from its channel, in accordance with the prophecy of Jer. 50: 38, "A drought is upon her waters, and they shall be dried up." Babylon fell. And God has chosen to make literal Babylon a type of "BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS." "And the waters which thou sawest, where the harlot sitteth, are peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues," (Rev. 17: 15); and as the drying up of the literal Euphrates was the immediate cause of the fall of ancient Babylon, so the drying up the waters of mystic Euphrates is the prelude to the fall of "Mystery, Babylon the great," (Rev. 16: 12, and 19).
Mystic Babylon never was supported by the Mohammedans; hence, the drying up of their power could have no relation to her fall while the drying up of the power of the christian nations, would necessarily cause her downfall.
Again: The waters of Euphrates are to be dried up, "to prepare the way of the kings of the east," and "the kings of the east" are mostly Mohammedans. In Ezek. 38:, where the prophecy of the gathering to this great battle is found, he names Persia, Ethiopia, and Libya, as a part of those who come to the battle. And these nations are the very ones now occupying Egypt, Palestine, and the east, and all these nations are Mohammedans. But the great battle does not occur until after the return of the Jews. And they are to dwell safely in "unwalled villages, in the land that is brought back from the sword in the mountains of Israel," (see Ezek. 38: 11, 14). Then "Togarmah of the north parts," which possibly means Russia, "and Gomer and many people, and Persia, Ethiopia, and Libya, with them," are to come up "against my people Israel, as a cloud to cover the land;" it shall be in
the latter days, and I will bring thee against my land, that the heathen may know me, when I shall be sanctified in thee, 0 Gog, before their eyes," (verse 16). How then, can Russia fill this prophecy, by coming up against the Mohammedans, since it is "against my people Israel," that they are to come? "For I will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle."
The following events must transpire before the beginning of this gathering, viz:
The Mohammedans must vacate Palestine, and the Jews return, settle there, and dwell safely; and when the gathering for the great battle does take place, Russia, if it is represented by "Togarmah, of the north parts," must come up in company with the Mohammedan powers of the east, and against "my people Israel." Hence, Russia attacking Turkey, can have no immediate connection with "the battle of the great day of God Almighty."
But before all this, there is not only the return of the Jews, but the drying up of the waters of Euphrates, Hence, it is the christian nations of Europe, and not the Mohammedan nations of the east who are to be crushed. But where is the power to come from, to dry up that great river? civilized and war-like Europe could withstand all the kingdoms of the world without any unusual effort; and it is not God who will interfere; "Surely the Lord God will do nothing but he revealeth his secrets to his servants the prophets;" and the prophets tell of his interference, only when the great gathering is completed, and Jerusalem is taken. Then "the Lord my God shall come and all the saints with thee." And the Lord shall go forth and fight against all those nations, as when he fought in the day of battle, (Zech. 14). But the waters of Euphrates are to be dried up, that the way of the kings of the east [not the north] may be prepared to come to that battle.
And that great city was divided into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell. This is how the waters are to be dried up; by a triune struggle among themselves, not by Russia taking Constantinople. That great city that reigneth over the kings of the earth (Rev. 17: 18), represented tor 1260 years by papal Rome, is the fourth empire. And this fourth Roman christian empire, is to be divided into three parts. "Three unclean spirits came out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet." The dragon is the monarchial element of the empire; the beast is that on which the woman sat; the false prophet is the religious
or papal element; and although this division is clearly discernible, it is to be fully consummated only under the sixth and seventh plagues. Hence, the battle of the great day cannot come this side of the seventh plague. And it takes no prophetic eye to see, in such a triune division, the means for "drying up" the power of christian Europe, since the strength of the three parties are so evenly balanced.
The Ottoman empire filled its place in prophecy under the sixth trumpet, and hence, has no more prophetic importance than has Chaldea, Persia, Greece, or any other of the nations who have stood for a brief space in the front, acted their part in the world's drama, and then passed out of sight.
The present  eastern question may, and doubtless will be a link among the events which shall open the way for the return of the Jew, since the division of the spoils of Turkey in Europe will probably hasten the "drying up of Euphrates." But beyond this, it can have no prophetic significance; and certainly no immediate connection with the battle of Armageddon.
"BABYLON IS FALLEN."
"And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues." (Rev. 18: 4.)
Babylon is the religious element of the fourth empire, and as papal Rome, has for many centuries represented that empire. Hence it is called "that great city that reigneth over the kings of the earth." But beyond all question, it refers to and embraces all the church-state organizations of the christian nations. To become a part of the world is opposed to the religion of our Lord Jesus Christ. "Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication" (chap. 14: 8). Fornication here means the union of church and state, and the fall of Babylon is the dissolution of that union. In other words, it is "the woman" being thrown from "the beast." "I saw a woman sit upon a scarlet colored beast full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns" (Rev. 17: 3). She is now falling, but not fallen. The union of church and state is now in process of dissolution over all of what has represented the fourth empire; but that separation is not yet accomplished. When the civil power refuses any longer to carry the church, Babylon will have fallen. Hence, the fall of Babylon, and the
"division of that great city" is one and the same. And just so fast as this triune division between the monarchial, the religious and the republican elements of that great empire progress, just so fast does the fall of Babylon progress. But it is only under the seventh and last plague this consummation is to be reached. (See Rev. 16: 17, 19.)
The idea that a church becoming corrupt, can represent the fall of Babylon, has neither Scripture nor common-sense in its favor. Nowhere is "Babylon the great, the mother of harlots and the abominations of the earth," represented as being anything but a harlot, and it is the fall of Babylon, and not the church of God that fled into the wilderness becoming Babylon, which must fill this prophecy.
As the fall of Babylon is not due until the "great city is divided," and that division is consummated under the seventh plague, it follows that the third angel's message of "Come out of her, my people" is not due till then. Hence, the question as to who "my people" are, becomes pertinent. The twelve tribes of Israel are always referred to as "my people." And the twelve tribes are to be delivered during this time of trouble. "At that time there shall be a time of trouble such as never was since there was a nation, and at that time thy [Daniel's] people shall be delivered." "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" (Jer. 30: 7). Neither of the above can refer to the bride of Christ, for it is not the time of her trouble; she is to be "accounted worthy to escape all these things, and to stand before the Son of man."
The Jews are Christ's people, but not his bride; "He came to his own and his own received him not; and he told them that they should see him no more "until that day when they shall say Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord" (Matt. 23; 39). They were cut off, and the kingdom of God taken from them; and taken from them forever, except the few, who like Paul, have been grafted in again during the gospel. But there are many and glorious promises to the fleshly house of Israel. Their blindness has been the riches of the Gentiles; "but as touching the election, they are beloved for the father's sake; for the gifts and calling of God are without repentance." And they are to represent the earthly house, located at old Jerusalem, even as the "church of the first-born" are to represent the heavenly house in the new, or spiritual Jerusalem.
The people called out of Babylon must refer to the Jews, we think, because they are to be gathered out of all nations, and restored to their own land, while the saints are to be taken in the twinkling of an eye, from the mill, the field, and any and every place where they may happen to be. And the call out of Babylon does not appear to mean merely a purifying of themselves, since they are to come out, lest they should partake of her sins. The real bride of Christ never has, in any moral sense, been in Babylon. "I pray not that thou shouldst take them out of the world, but that thou shouldst keep them from the evil." And in the harvest, it is the work of the angels, to gather first the tares and bind them in bundles. Hence, "Come out of her, my people," cannot in any spiritual, or literal sense, apply to the Christian church, but does most certainly appear reasonable as applied to the Jews, when the Lord shall set his hand again the second time to gather them from all nations.
Compare our text with Isa. 48: 20, and Jer. 51: 6; "Flee out of the midst of Babylon, and deliver every man his soul; be not cut off in her iniquity." "Come out of her, my people, that ye receive not of her plagues." This would appear to make the return of the Jews due only when the seven last plagues are fulfilled. "And at that time thy people shall be delivered, and many that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake." This also synchronizes with Job. 14:19. "Oh, that thou wouldst hide me in the grave, that thou wouldst keep me secret, until thy wrath be passed, that thou wouldst appoint me a set time and remember me. . . . Thou shalt call and I will answer thee."
The resurrection of the restitution class, those who "shall stand upon the earth" in the latter day, in their flesh, and see God," is therefore not due until the day of wrath is passed, while the dead in Christ who are to be raised spiritual bodies, is due before the day of wrath.
The writer does not forget that unfulfilled prophecy cannot be applied in detail. Hence, the return of the Jews, and the resurrection of this second class, may not be as yet fully understood; but there are Scriptures which appear to make the return of the Jews to begin with the living Jews of this generation who are called "a remnant" and after their return Jerusalem is surrounded, the city is taken, and one-half go into captivity, (see Zech. 14), then the Lord interferes and saves them. And yet "Jerusalem must be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled;" hence, trodden down
until A. D. 1914, when the day of wrath will be passed, and the resurrection and return of the "whole house of Israel" due.
This would also synchronize with the type in Egypt. For it will be remembered, it was in the midst of the alarm caused by the seventh and last plague brought on the Egyptians, that they were called out of Egypt. "According to the days of the coming out of the land of Egypt, will I show unto him marvelous things; the nations shall see and be confounded at all their might" (Micah 7: 15).
Truly we are on the eve of great events. The harvest of the earth is ripe; the time of trouble is beginning, and the fulfilment of prophecies are crowding one upon another, and scenes are to be enacted during the coming thirty-seven years, terrible beyond all that history has ever yet recorded. But let the little flock who are the "children of the day," and are walking in the light, lift up their heads, and "watch and pray, that they may be accounted worthy to escape all these things, and to stand before the Son of Man."
THE KINGDOM OF GOD.
The Adventists, or as they are sometimes called, "the world burners," have run into many errors because they fail to discern the true character of the kingdom of God. Everywhere, both in the Old and New Testaments, the church, or people of God, represent his kingdom; —"Ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests; and a holy nation." And Christ invariably makes the gospel church, the good and bad, represent the kingdom. The kingdom of heaven is like to a net which men cast into the sea, and brought forth fish, both good and bad. The kingdom was likened to a sower, that sowed good seed, and another sower, that sowed bad seed. It was likened to "ten virgins," five of whom were wise and five foolish.
The fact that the kingdoms of this world are to become the kingdoms of our Lord, and that he is to "rule them with a rod of iron," until every knee shall bow; and that the saints share that power with him, and take the kingdom, and possess the kingdom under the whole heaven, does not prove that the kingdom of God will be an earthly kingdom, or that "flesh and blood" can inherit it. If our brethren who are, perhaps justly, called materialists, would but lift their eyes from the natural to the spiritual, they might see that "the kingdom of God can
be a spiritual kingdom; and that all who inherit, it can be spiritual beings, "born of the Spirit," and yet mingle under a vail of flesh as the angels have done, with the nations over whom they are to be kings and priests, while they themselves are an entirely distinct order of being, visible to humanity only when under the vail of flesh. This is God's order for the whole human family, with certain exceptions, of such as die the "second or eternal death." First, the natural, Adamic, or earthly man; second, the spiritual, or heavenly man. "And as is the earthy, such are they that are earthy; and as is the heavenly, such are they that are heavenly." "That which is born of the spirit is spirit; and that which is born of the flesh is flesh." And as the saint is to be "raised, a spiritual body," that body is "born of the spirit." Unbelief will not interrupt God's order, but it will cause those who indulge in it, to come short of attaining to that life. On the nature of the kingdom of God, our age-to-come brethren are as far from the truth as are those who are called "world burners;" they see nothing but what is of the earth, earthy; the cultivation of land, the building of houses, &c., &c.; just what is promised to the restored Jew, who they themselves admit is to be in the flesh. Hence, whatever confused ideas they may have in regard to the saints being made like unto "Christ's glorious body." —for descriptions of which, see Rev. 1: 12, and also Paul's experience; their theory makes mortals and immortals, the restored Jew, and the glorified saint, both together, to be in, and share in the kingdom of God, thus making corruption to inherit incorruption. And there is not one particle of light in their writings which can clear their theory of this confusion of the spiritual and the natural. Hence, all spiritually minded men have been compelled to reject the age-to-come doctrine. And yet they have so much Scripture to maintain the fact of an age-to-come, that they feel strong, in all their weakness.
Although the church in its mortal state represents the kingdom of God, that kingdom is not "set up" or organized. "The natural first, and afterwards the spiritual." Under the old covenant, while all was on the plane of the flesh, the fleshly church was an organized kingdom. But under the gospel, the kingdom of heaven is likened to a nobleman who committed certain trusts to his servants, and went into a far country to receive a kingdom, and to return. Hence, "thy kingdom come" means, thy kingdom be set up, or organized as a ruling power. But it is not to be on the plane of the flesh, which would be going
backwards. Hence the kingdom is organized, only when "this mortal shall have put on immortality." "He that keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations, and he shall rule them with a rod of iron; . . . even as my Father has given to me." And this end does not mean death, for at death we do not get power over the nations.
If the reader has the true idea of the kingdom, that now, in its preparatory state, it is represented by the church, in which are found both good and bad; and that when the kingdom is set up, or organized on the spiritual plane, the bad will be eradicated; and that this occurs at the second advent of Christ, — when "the nobleman returns" — he is prepared to understand some of the events of the "harvest," upon which we have now entered, as brought to view in the parable of the "tares and the wheat," (Matt. 13). "The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; the tares are the children of the wicked one; the harvest is the end of the [aion] age, and the reapers are the angels. . . . In thy end of this age the Son of man shall send forth his angels and gather out of his kingdom [church] all things that offend and them which do iniquity, and shall cast them into a furnace of fire; then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom ["church of the first born"] of their Father."
Many suppose this involves the burning of the world, because he gathers out of his kingdom all things that offend. It is the tares he gathers out of his kingdom. The field is the world (kosmos), world of mankind; and the seed is sown in their hearts. But the tares are not the world; they are the children of the wicked one, while the world of mankind, the Adamic family, are the sons of God. "Which was the son of Seth, which was the son of Adam, which was the son of God." Adam means the first man, the natural, and Jesus Christ was "the second man," not the ten thousandth. And Adam, as the earthy man, with his race, is as truly the son of God as is Christ, the heavenly man. They are the two orders, first the natural man, and afterwards the spiritual man.
If the reader prefers to change both the language of the parable, and the interpretations of Christ, rather than to renounce his previous ideas, I can only say I am not writing for such men. The world are neither wheat or tares; they are simply material, as ground in which both good and bad seed may be sown. Hence, all that the work of the harvest demands, is to gather out of the many who have been called, under the gos-
pel, the bad "fish," the "foolish virgins," the "tares," and then to glorify the sanctified church. And let every one remember that those who are in darkness, in relation to the coming of the "day of the Lord," when that day comes, will be overtaken as a thief, and are therefore not "the children of light," whatever may be their professions as to godliness; or as to what they have done for Christ.
THE TWO-HORNED BEAST.
"I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon." (Rev. 13: 11.)
I understand this represents the two Napoleonic dynasties. And that "the beast" of Rev. 13, having seven heads and ten horns, refers to papal Rome, and the image of the beast (verse 14), to papacy, as it has existed since its restoration in March, 1800. Papacy has filled a large place in the world's history, and it has been the burden of prophecy to show its various characters. It has been portrayed as a woman, because of its ecclesiastical character; it has been represented as a "beast," or "horn," holding times and laws, for forty and two months, or 1260 years. And Daniel says, "I beheld, and the same horn [notwithstanding the judgment sat, and they took away its dominion] made war and prevailed, until the time came that the saints possesed the kingdom (compare Dan. 7: 21, 25, 26). Hence, if not as the forty and two month beast of Rev. 13: 5, still it must exist in some character to the end of the times of the Gentiles.
As the representative of the Roman empire for 1260 years it held great power; but since its dominion was taken away in 1798, though making great pretentions, it has really been only an image of its former self. The first beast of Rev. 13; was the Roman empire in the peculiar character it held as papal Rome; and while the papal government represented one of the "seven heads." In 1708, that head was wounded unto death (verse 3). But shortly after "its deadly wound was healed," and papacy was restored, but in a new character. These are facts of the present century, which of course cannot be denied. As the beast which had the wound by the sword, and did live (verse 14), was the forty and two months beast, that is papal Rome in the character it filled for that period; so "the image of the beast that had a wound by the sword and did live," must be something similar to the old papal beast, and yet a
something which lacks its vitality. And we can show that the restored papacy has filled that picture.
The two-horned beast was to "say to them that dwell upon the earth, that they should make an image to the beast which had the wound by the sword and did live. And he had power to give life to that image" (verse 14). The first Napoleon did say to the cardinals of the church of Rome, restore the papacy. And those thirty-five cardinals met at Venice in March, 1800, and elected a new pope, under whom they reorganized. And the Napoleonic dynasty gave that image life; restored the papacy to Rome and maintained it there, a mere image, as a stroke of policy, to appease the catholic world. And the second horn, or second Napoleonic dynasty, also supported that image and gave it life, by keeping his troops in Rome until about the time he himself fell at Sedan, in September, 1870. And when the two-horned beast could no longer give it life, the image fell and ceased to be a head or government of Rome. These are all facts of the present century. And now we will see if this image of the old forty and two months beast has done what the prophecy declares he was to do, and if so, men may speculate and argue against this position, but they cannot overthrow facts.
"That he should both speak and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed" (verse 15). This, and what follows in verses 16 and 17, is what the image was to do. Speaking, like all the rest, is a symbol. "I beheld, then, because of the voice of the great words which the horn spake" (Dan. 7: 11). By turning to Daniel, the reader will find this speaking is after the Ancient of Days comes, after the "judgment was set, and the books were opened." And papacy has yet a great future during this coming time of trouble, and is to be the last "to drink of the cup at the Lord's hand." The church of Rome, together with her harlot daughters, are mystic Babylon, of which old Babylon was the type. Turn to Jer. 51: 41, the prophecy which John the Revelator applies to mystic Babylon, and you will find that Babylon is there called "Sheshach." And this name occurring but once more in all the Bible, is found in Jer. 25: 26, where Sheshach is to be the last to fall in the time of trouble which reaches "to all the kingdoms of the world which are upon the face of the earth." Hence, in this triune struggle between the monarchial, the republican and the religious elements of the empire, the religious will be the last to fall. And it is this same power, the "little horn" of Dan. 7, since the change which came over it in 1798, which is
the "image of the beast,"and represents Babylon, or sheshach.
The image of the beast was to both speak and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed. If this killing is a symbol, we can see how it has been fulfilled. There are two kinds of symbolic death, viz., political and ecclesiastical. The image of the beast has excommunicated, or caused to suffer ecclesiastical death, more than a hundred millions of the catholic world. Nearly all of Italy, Dollinger, and a large part of Germany, as well as many of the catholics of France; in fact, all who would not accept of his infallibility. The 16th and 17th verses are yet in the future, and belong after the "Ancient of Days comes, and the judgment sits, and the books are opened. I beheld, then, because of the great words which the horn spake; I beheld until the beast was slain and his body given to the burning flames (Dan. 7: 11; see also Rev. 19), "These both [the beast and false prophet], were taken alive and cast into a lake of fire, burning with brimstone." And after the saints are delivered, and on the sea of glass (Rev. 15: 1), the plagues are poured out on them that worship the beast "and his image" (see chap. 16: 2). Hence, the "image of the beast" is yet to hold a very prominent place in the coming "time of trouble."
"The two-horned beast comes up as a lamb and speaks as a dragon." The two Napoleonic dynasties came up in each case as republics, and soon changed into imperial governments. "He exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him." Napoleon had kings and emperors under his influence, and divided up nearly the whole of Europe, making one brother king of Holland, another of Spain, and himself claimed to be king of Rome, &c., &c. And he caused the people of the Roman earth to worship the first beast, by putting down that infidel reign of terror, and restoring the papal religion. "Those miracles he had power to do in sight of the beast" were, "saying to them that dwell upon the earth that they should make an image to the beast, and he had power to give life to that image."
Thus the two-horned beast which gave life to the image of the beast, has passed away, while the image has yet a great and terrible future before it.
I can see his coming judgments, as they circle all the earth;
The signs and groanings promised to precede a second birth.
I read his righteous sentence, in the crumbling thrones of earth.
Our God is marching on.