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resurrection of the Church " and not the Israel of God; but if there the rapture of the saints ?
were any of that people who were 3. That the worthies of the old circumcised in heart, and gloried in Testament " are not included in the the Cross according to the sentiterm, dead in Christ.” If so, how is ments of “a new creature" (verse it that the Old Testament saints, 15,) those were the Israel of God. not being in Christ, can be saved at It is evident from the wording of all, especially as both “ G. J. v S.” verse 16, that the term “ Israel of and myself maintain the doctrine of God," does not apply to the
, life only in Christ ?
” who were walking ac4. What Scriptural authority is cording to apostolic rule, but to a there for the phrase secret rapture, party as distinguished from them since our blessed Lord has dis
by the conjunction "and ;" so tinctly declared that His coming is that this passage affords no warrant like the lightning shining from one for designating "the Tribes of end of the heaven to the other, and Israel" as "The Bridegroom and
“ that if they say, “ Behold, he is in Bride." Besides, it is manifestly the secret chambers, believe it not inconsistent to apply an earthly (Matt. xxiv. 26). Or is it feasible (
title to a heavenly body. to suppose it can be secret and At the close of Mr. Starkey's unknown, when the apostle (1 Thess. sequel in this month's RAINBOW, he iv. 16) says, “For the Lord Himself wishes that the position of those shall 'descend from heaven with a who assail his, be placed side by shout, with the voice of the arch- side, that Rainbow readers may be angel and with the trump of God ? " able to compare both with the It may be giving a little trouble to
Scriptures. This is just and good, my friend “G. J. v. S.” but a few
I at once accede; and as I cannot direct Scripture proofs (not mere quote the whole, I refer to my guesses) upon these points would not long since published work on greatly oblige me, and be in- The Book of the Revelation, pp. teresting to the numerous readers 159-168, where my "position of the Rainbow.
with regard to the sixth seal and I remain, dear sir,
its results may be viewed side by Yours very truly, side with Mr. Starkey's exposi
Chas. UNDERHILL. tion on p. 71 of your issue for Woodbridge Lodge, Oxford. February.
It is the non-acknowledgment
that the Symbols of the Apocalypse REJOINDER.
necessarilly explain the nature of DEAR SIR,-I solicit the privilege the phenomena with which they are of a rejoinder to Mr. Starkey's connected, that leads to error of reply to my questions of your pre- interpretation. If Mr. Starkey vious issue.
does not refer to my work, he will Mr. Starkey would justify his find the above principle of exstatement that the Sealed Ones of position fully narrated in RAINBOW
Rev. vii. are representative of “The for June, 1876, et seq. Bridegroom and Bride," by allusion Yours faithfully, to Rom. ix. 6, and Gal. vi. 16.
St. Paul's Man of Sin and Mystery
of the world's Cæsars to his fatal of Lawlessness. A New Ex- throne, is no doubt part of the position of 2 Thess. ii. 1-12. By
drama. But surely “ Dionysius " Dionysius. London: A. Southey cannot mean to teach-although
, Fenchurch Street.
his words suggest it—that nations
should always recognise the prinThe writer of this pamphlet has ciple of Divine authority in their keen insight into the workings and kings, though those kings may be tendencies of that very unsteady bloodthirsty tyrants and, morally, thing called “public opinion.” He the vilest of mankind. Why, where thinks the rule of the lawless one would this lead us ? What would will establish itself upon the de- be the position of England to-day mocracy of the nations. Very if our ancestors had acted thus? likely; we have long thought so. A land of wretched slaves, instead Universal suffrage bearing the last of an imperial race !
“ A. B."-Yes, the “RAINBOW Tracts,”—a series of seven, by the Editor—may
all be had now. We have gone to considerable expense in printing large editions, in the belief that they teach TRUTH, and in the hope that our friends will circulate them largely. The following are tha titles and prices :
1. The Ministry of Evil.
7. The Dispensation of the Mystery.
1s. 6d. Friends wishing any of these tracts—they are, in fact, little booksfor circulation, will please order them either of F. Southwell, 19, Paternoster Row, London; or Cyrus E. Brooks, The Link, Malvern.
“S.”—We clip the following from the “ Christian World”: “The sixteenth anniversary of Dr. Leask's pastorate in Maberly Chapel, Islington, was celebrated last Thursday. The reports of the various institutions connected with the church were all excellent. The only drawback was the want of room for the greatly increased Sunday-school. The first report of the building fund was highly encouraging. The people are deeply in earnest in their desire to have a place of worship
erected somewhat more worthy of the invaluable teaching with which the congregation are privileged,' as one gentleman said, who concluded his speech with a donation of one hundred guineas. It appears that Dr. Leask has received several sums towards the new chapel through the Rainbow; and it must have been very gratifying to him to hear the encomiums passed upon that magazine, both by gentlemen from a distance, and by members of the church, as an advocate of pure Gospel truth, a powerful agent in the new Reformation.'”
“ Ispah.”—You “ can hardly credit the rumour.” It is, nevertheless, a fact. Truth is strong and brave, and can afford to be charitable, so that we pity rather than condemn. The guardians of orthodox“ and terrors" must be in a sad plight!
“ A. G. S."—We can give you, in all sincerity, an apostolic answer : "I have learned in whatsoever state I am to be content."
" A. M. P." and " M. P." thank us for the sermon on “The End of all Evil,”—March No.—and add: “It clears up so satisfactorily the difficulty respecting pruning that the universalists contend for in Matt. xxv. 46. No words,” says “A. M. P.,” “ can express the gratitude I feel to you for the light I receive through the RAINBOW." You ask the meaning of Matt. xi. 11. John was the greatest of the prophets (Luke vii. 27, 28) because he was the Lord's Herald, and had the honour of pointing Him out as having come, whilst the other prophets said that He would come. But in “ the kingdom " the humblest ambassadors of the King will tell the nations of “the finished mystery of God," and demand instant allegiance to the Divine sceptre. John proclaimed “The kingdom of heaven is at hand,” and was not believed by the influential ones; but the Saviour intimated, by the words under notice, that it should come nevertheless; and when its immortal preachers appear they will say, It has come in imposing glory! “Greater," not in personal character, but in the wonderfully altered circumstances. desponding John would rejoice before the headsman's axe smote him, when his disciples told him what they had seen and heard, that, after all, dark as the outlook was, he was not deceived not the herald of a false Messiah, or an imaginary kingdom !
“ E. S.,” Baldock, says : "I have been reperusing your interesting tract on. The Rich Man and Lazarus,' and was gratified to find that the views I have lately received concerning the second death accord with those you have so clearly expressed in your pamphlet.”
“R. W. B.,” India, says: “ Your explanation of the cloud of witnesses ’ is far more to the point than the common exposition. It strikes a fatal blow to the intermediate state, which is so cherished by so-called orthodoxy."
"J. G.”—The word gehenna (hell) is not found in the Apocalypse. In the authorised version the word hell occurs four times, but in each instance it is hades- the realm of the dead.
“Nemo.”—The Bible is our rule of faith, our authority, our creed. In another page you will find the judgment of the illustrious BAXTER ON “ Creeds." * We commend it to your study.
THE RAINBOW: 2 Magazine of Christian Literature, with Special Reference to tge
Bebealed Future of tặe Cþureş and týe World.
STUDIES IN THE LIFE OF CHRIST.
No. V. Annunciations and Prophecies. The Highest,” and “ His
COMPARISON of the births of John the Baptist and Jesus
brings out in a striking manner the solitary glory of the latter. Both were announced by the same heavenly messenger, both were out of the ordinary course of nature, and it is this very parallelism that brings into prominence the profound and eternal gulf that otherwise separates them. John was the child of Zacharias. “Elisabeth shall bear thee a son.” The annunciation to Joseph was that Jesus was not a child of man. To Mary it was said, “The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee, therefore also that holy thing (rò åylov) (no parallel to it existing anywhere) which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.” We come to see that the very circumstances in connection with the birth of John which seem to bring it near in significance to that of Christ, only remove the Lord's to an infinite distance in proportion as they are significant. For John's greatness is altogether due to his office, and the glories of his birth and of his ministry are solely derived from that Lord whose ways he went before to prepare. How great must be that Being, whose herald even must be provided in a way out of the ordinary course of nature, and filled with the Holy Ghost from his mother's womb? But when He uttered his first cry in the wilderness world, the heavens were silent over Palestine ; no portent blazed among the constellations, no strangely habited men came with offerings and with worship ; indeed, the first to worship Jesus had been John, unborn (Luke i. 20, 41, 44). The news spread quietly, and no further than among a small company of “ neighbours and cousins ” who came to Elisabeth to rejoice with her.
And when the tongue of Zacharias was loosed he speaks not the glories of his son, but of the “horn of salvation raised up for us in the house of His servant David." Gabriel had said to Mary, “ The power of the Highest shall overshadow thee,” and of Jesus, “He shall be called the Son of the Highest," therefore Zacharias broke out, “And thou, child, shalt be called the prophet of the Highest ; for thou shalt go before the face of the Lord to prepare His ways. To give knowledge of salvation unto His people by the remission of their sins. Through the tender mercy of our God : whereby the dayspring from on high hath visited us. light to them that sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.”.
Not a word is spoken of his Kingship, though indeed by Jordan's banks he ruled with a mightier power than kings'; and as he entered the world silently, so, his work being done, “ in turning many of the children of Israel to the Lord their God, the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just,” (grand life !) he quits the world as quietly as he entered it. To him, as unto Peter, an angel came in the recesses of his dungeon, but it was an angel in disguise, and as the head that would not bow to Herod fell beneath the sword, the chains fell off, the prison doors were opened, the wilderness was passed. Jesus testified, “ Among them that are born of women there hath not arisen a greater than John the Baptist.”. Consider then how great must He be“ whose shoes' latchet John said he was to unloose.”
John died a martyr to the truth he taught as much as Christ did, and if this were all in the death of Christ, it is strange that the apostles have no word to say of John's in all their doctrine. His death has no other significance than its example; the great something that was in Christ's death was not in his; no apostle preached it as a death for men, and for all we can see, the very record of it might have been spared were there not important lessons in the crime of Herod and his family, and in the withdrawal of the Forerunner—the dying of the morning star in the beams of the dayspring from on high.
Strikingly different is the testimony borne of Christ by those who spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost, and great the difference of the matter of the two annunciations. John's " greatness, as we have already said, is distinctly referable to his official relationship to Christ, " He shall be great in the sight of the Lord,” ” he shall go before Him in the spirit and power of Elias.” Of Jesus it was said (and the prescribed name of Saviour is momentous, " for He shall save His people from their sins "), “ The Lord God shall give unto Him the throne of His father David ; and He shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever (or unto the ages), and of His kingdom there shall be no end.” And if the glories of His birth made the dumb invisible to speak and to