Part 2 All Saints will(are) Literally Coming Back BEFORE the Millennium to FULLY Restore Order
Är du redo? Bibeln berättar oss på dussintals platser att alla de gamla heliga i sant kristna Israel (inte den enda stammen som kallas judar, utan 13 kristna stammar i sant Israel!) Kommer att återuppväcka och komma tillbaka före det hebreiska årtusendet. Om du inte är redo kommer de (eller vi) att sparka din rumpa för att göra dig redo för Kristi ankomst som kommer att härska på jorden från Davids tron i 1000 år. Han kommer tillbaka för en kyrka som är utan fläck eller rynkor och kommer att avgå när hans fiender görs till hans fotpall (och som i TCAWWs studie matar alla majestät / äldste / marshaler dem som litar på YAHWEH).
Jag vill skicka anteckningarna från dig Peters i sin ”The Lord's Lord of Jesus Theocrates”.
Dessa skrifter om återuppbyggnaden kan senare bli del 2 den “Hans Ekklesia kommer att vara starkare än den någonsin har varit på christsassembly.com “
(Du kan ladda ner hela texten till "Teokratiska kungariket" om du har e-svärd (allt gratis nedladdningsbart). Det bästa är att du kan klicka på varje vers om du har e-svärd och det öppnar hela referensbibeltexterna. Ignorera de flesta av dessa referenser till några judar. Ingen av bibeltexterna säger "judar", jag vet inte hur han blandar den delen med de heliga. Det är emellertid den del på resurationen jag vill dela. Det finns flera delar nedan.)Rev Stephen MK
Minister, Kristi församling
Grand Marshal, Priory of Salem
Grand Marshal, Priory of Salem
Prop. 126. In confirmation of our position, the Old Testament clearly teaches a Pre-Millennial resurrection of the saints.
OUR ENTIRE ARGUMENT, STEP BY STEP, LEADS TO THIS AS A NECESSITY, OTHERWISE THE KINGDOM AS COVENANTED AND PREDICTED CANNOT APPEAR, AND CANNOT BE INHERITED. LEAVING THE REASONS ALREADY ASSIGNED (UNDER THE DISCUSSION OF THE COVENANT AND MEMORIAL, SEE. PROP. 49), WE NOW APPEAL TO OTHERS WHICH SHOW THAT BEFORE THE MESSIANIC KINGDOM CAN BE REALIZED THE RIGHTEOUS DEAD MUST FIRST BE RAISED UP FROM AMONG THE DEAD.
Obs. 1. No one doubts that Isa_25:6-8 is descriptive of the Messiah’s Kingdom. If we regard it, as it ought to be, representative of a state here on earth to be witnessed during an appointed time, and if we do not take the unwarranted liberty of dividing and subdividing it, allotting portions of it to one time and other portions to another time, or, ascribing parts of it to earth and others to the third heaven, then it will be very easy to locate the period of its verification or realization on the authority of the Apostle Paul. In turning to 1Co_15:54, after a description only of the resurrection of the righteous, the apostle emphatically adds, “then” (i.e. at this very time of this resurrection) “shall be brought to pass the saying that is written ‘Death is swallowed up in victory.’” Isaiah’s Millennial description, which all agree is a delineation of Christ’s Kingdom, is, according to this testimony, to be fulfilled or brought to pass when a resurrection is experienced by the saints. This is corroborated by the statements given in Isaiah, corresponding with such, that we know are only to be realized after death is abolished. But Paul adds another saying which is also “then,” at that time to be brought to pass, viz., the one given by Hos_13:14 (gives the spirit of it), “O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?” The question that arises here is this: Paul well knew that Hos_13:14 (as well as Isa_25:8) was a favorite passage of the Jews to support a resurrection of righteous Jews at the inauguration of the Kingdom by the coming of the Messiah-how, then, could he locate its fulfillment at a resurrection of saints, conjointly with the Kingdom description of Isaiah, unless he fully and freely endorsed such a Jewish view? This testimony is plain and convincing, unless we charge Paul with prevarication. As an inspired man, as a follower of Gamaliel, as a preacher of the Kingdom, knowing the Jewish views, he could not give them such an endorsement unless it was true.
If Paul had not in I Corinthians 15 explained the phrase, “He has swallowed up death in victory,” then spiritualizers would undoubtedly have explained it away as denoting, probably, comfort or hope in death, etc. Indeed, some not satisfied with Paul’s reference think that “death” in Isaiah denotes the woes or calamities of the Jewish nation, and this is done by Vitringa, Rosenmuller, Bush, etc., in order to make the Millennial predictions to correspond with the present state of the church. Against the express interpretation and application of Paul, they assert that “death” here is only “another term for all manner of grievous afflictions, persecutions, wars, pestilences, sicknesses, everything, in fact, of a deadly or desolating nature, everything which causes grief, mourning, and tribulation.” A specimen worthy of Origen! But the multitude of our opposers do justice to Paul’s quotation, and insist that a bodily resurrection is denoted. Barnes (Com. loci) only expresses the sentiments of these when he makes it refer to “death in its proper signification,” to the fact “that He will abolish death,” and that Paul’s quoting it “is sufficient proof that it refers to the resurrection,” etc. The context of Isa_25:6-9, as will be shown hereafter, forbids its application to the present existing dispensation, because the events connected therewith can only be realized at the Second Advent. We certainly cannot be censured for our application of Hosea when even our bitter opponent Jerome (Art. “Jerome,” Ency. Brit.) employs it (Hos_6:2-3) as referring to the resurrection of Jesus, and then to the regeneration of the human race through the same. Now the plural form “us” cannot refer to Jesus as an individual (unless we conceive Him as one of the brethren), but to the saints. He also applies Hos_13:14 to the death and resurrection of Jesus.
Obs. 2. In Daniel 12, we have, according to the early Church and many eminent writers, a literal, twofold, and Pre-Millennial resurrection foretold. The English version gives, Dan_12:2, “And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.” That the language indicates a literal resurrection is fully admitted even by those who spiritualize it, or who apply it to the time of the Maccabees; that it is expressive of or drawn from the doctrine of a literal resurrection all critics confess.319 [Note: 19 319. Surely we are correct when such men as Prof. Bush, who make a literal resurrection adumbrate “a moral quickening” and “future life,” apply this to the “resuscitation of the dead mentioned in the Gospels,” and especially to “that remarkable display of resurrection power put forth upon the many bodies of the saints that slept, which arose, and came out of their graves after his resurrection.” Or, when Grotius, Amner, etc., following the interpretation of the heathen Porphyry, yet admit that the language is such as “to hint at the mystery of the resurrection.” Besides this, the student well knows that a leading objection against the Book of Daniel by destructive critics is, that a literal resurrection is taught.] “Sleep” used for death; “sleeping in the dust of the earth;” “awake” employed to denote restoration to life; this awaking of such sleepers to “everlasting life,” all in the phraseology and contrast enforce such a meaning. To avoid the charge of forcing an interpretation, we shall rely on the renderings given by our opponents. Prof. Bush, a critical scholar, gives the following: “And many of the sleepers of the dust of the ground shall awake-these to everlasting life, and those to shame and everlasting contempt.” He contends that the words in their precise meaning demand a twofold resurrection, one class being raised up to life while another are not then awakened. As to the latter part of the verse and the controversy originated by it, we may in this discussion pass it by, only saying, (1) if it has the meaning given by Bush, then it forms an additional argument in our favor; (2) but if the contrary, as Barnes and others, is to be received, viz., that the just and unjust are both raised at the same time, then it may be referred, as many do, to the resurrection of professed believers good and bad. The first part of the verse is sufficient to sustain our position, viz., that of a partial resurrection of the dead-a resurrection of some out of or from among all the sleepers in the dust of the earth. The awaking is predicated alone of the “many of” and not of all men. Those who resort to making “the many” consist of “all” are restricted by the peculiar, significant, and conclusive “many of.” Hence we find the candid confession of Dr. Hody (Res. of the Body, p. 230): “I fully acknowledge that the word ‘many’ makes this text extremely difficult. I know what expositors say, but I am not satisfied with anything I have hitherto met with. Some tell us that ‘many’ is sometimes used in the Scriptures to signify ‘all’ but this does not clear the difficulty; for there is a great difference between ‘many’ and ‘many of.’ All that sleep in the dust are many; but many of them that sleep in the dust cannot be said to be all they that sleep in the dust. ‘Many of does plainly except some.” In the examination of various writers, all, without exception, acknowledge this restricted import, declaring that its removal does violence to the passage. The language then expresses a literal, partial resurrection. Now in its connection it describes a Pre-Millennial one, briefly, for the following reasons: (1) It is placed at the end of certain prophetic periods, which, as nearly all commentators agree, precede, or run down to, the commencement of the Millennial period; (2) it is connected with a deliverance of the people of God, pre-eminently characteristic of the beginning of the Millennial era; (3) it is identified with a period of great trouble, distress, etc., which, as many prophecies declare, precedes the ushering in of that age; (4) it is related to the period when the wicked shall be rooted out, etc., which is descriptive of the commencement of this age; (5) and the identifying of the promise annexed by Jesus Himself to the time immediately after the harvest, “then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun,” for, as Joel and John show, the harvest immediately precedes the Millennial glory.320 [Note: 20 320. Prof. Bush on “these” and “those” says: “The awaking is evidently predicted of the many and not of the whole; consequently the ‘these’ in the one case must be understood of the class that awake, and the ‘those’ in the other of that which remains asleep.” Many others coincide in this opinion. Barnes (Com. loci) forcibly says: “The natural and obvious meaning of the word ‘many’ here is, that a large portion of the persons referred to would thus awake, but not all. So we should understand it, if applied to other things, as in such expressions as these: ‘many of the people,’ ‘many of the houses in a city,’ etc. Gesenius states that the word ‘designates a part taken out of the whole.’” Hence we strongly object to some renderings which do not thus distinguish, as e.g. Knapp’s (Ch. Theol., p. 529), who concedes a literal resurrection, but renders: “Those who lie asleep under the earth will awake; some to eternal life, others to everlasting shame and contempt.” Such a version is evidently shaped by the opinion of a simultaneous resurrection of all the dead at the same time, and does manifest violence to the original, as urged by the best and most reliable of critics, and conceded (as shown) by the candid concessions of opponents. Prof. Whiting has: “And many from the sleepers of the dust of the ground shall awake, these to everlasting life, and those to reproaches and everlasting abhorrence.” Winthrop, and others, “And many from out of the sleepers of the dust,” etc. Brookes (Essays, p. 12, note), “And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake; these (the many raised ones) are destined to everlasting life-those (who remain in the graves) to shame and everlasting contempt;” so also Carlton and others. Many renderings give the same sense, the only change being in substituting “some” and “others” for “these” and “those,” excepting Augustine’s (City of God, b. 20, c. 23), who translates: ‘And many of them that sleep in the mound of the earth shall arise, some to everlasting life and some to shame and everlasting confusion.” In the Israelite Indeed, vol. 11, p. 210, Chaplin gives the following: “Many apart from those sleeping in the dust of the earth shall be awakened; these (the many awakened) shall have eternal life; and those (the remainder left sleeping) shall have the reproaches of eternity;” and Lederer (the editor) suggests: “And many from those who sleep in the earth-dust-or dust of the ground-shall be awakened; some to lives everlasting and some to shame and everlasting abhorrence.” The reader can readily verify such renderings in various leading commentaries given by others, and therefore we only append, as an illustration, another given by Tregelles (On Dan., p. 156): “Many from among the sleepers of the dust of the earth shall awake; these shall be unto everlasting life; but these (the rest of the sleepers) shall be unto shame and everlasting contempt” (comp. Smith’s Thoughts on Dan.), and observes: “I have given, I believe, the most literal rendering of the verse; it speaks of a resurrection, not the general when all shall be called forth, but of an eclectic character, ‘many from among the sleepers.’” “This passage has been understood by the Jewish commentators in the sense that I have stated.” Fausset (Cam. loci) endorses Tregelles, saying, “the Jewish commentators support Tregelles,” and remarks: “Not the general resurrection, but that of these who share in the first resurrection; the rest of the dead being not to rise till the end of the thousand years (Rev_20:3; Rev_20:5-6, cf. 1Co_15:23; 1Th_4:16). Israel’s national resurrection and the first resurrection of the elect Church, are similarly connected with the Lord’s Coming forth out of His place to punish the earth in Isa_26:19; Isa_26:21; Isa_27:6; cf. Isa_25:6-9” (Tregelles, p. 162, adds: “This translation is given as undoubtedly correct in Gerard Kerkherdere’s Prodromus Danielicus,” for “it is clearly not a general resurrection; it is ‘many from among;’ and it is only by taking the words in this sense that we gain any information as to what becomes of those who continue to sleep in the dust of the earth,” and quotes in confirmation of such a twofold resurrection Jewish authorities, R. Saadiah Haggaon and Aben Ezra.)
We are only concerned in insisting that a resurrection, and a twofold one, is clearly taught. That a resurrection is asserted is so plain that many (comp. Art. on “Resurrection” in M’Clintock and Strong’s Cyclop.) emphatically declare that it presents us “a clear and unequivocal declaration,” and even such commentators as Scott (loci), ready to spiritualize predictions and promises, unhesitatingly teach that a resurrection of the dead is most obviously taught, but over against the impregnable “many of” refers it to “the general resurrection.” The student will see for himself that any rendering approaching faithfulness to the original necessarily makes the resurrection of an eclectic nature. Dr. Brown (Ch. Second Com., p. 200) indeed makes “many of” to be “the multitude of,” and insists that two classes are included in these “many,” viz., “the good and the bad,” which is then transformed into “all,” and a simultaneous resurrection. Some writers take the position that this resurrection relates either to the Jewish nation or to the professing Church, or to both, and has the righteous and the mere professor raised at the same time, excluding the rest of the dead; others again think that a small moiety of the wicked are then raised up, as e.g. these who crucified Jesus, etc., while the vast body of the wicked dead remain until the close of the 1000 years; others again, the large majority, hold, as intimated, that only the saints are raised and the rest, who shall be awakened at some future time, remain in the dust of the earth. Still others, over against the implied awakening of both classes, make out that the last class never rise from the dead. Now the concise, abrupt language makes it requisite to interpret the passage according to the general analogy on the subject, which decidedly favors a partial, eclectic resurrection; the first clause referring exclusively to the righteous and their awakening as something separate and distinct from that of the wicked, while the last clause asserts the same fact given in Rev_20:5. Should, however, the last part include mere professors, or some noted wicked (as some think), yet the eclectic character of the resurrection is unmistakably indicated, and a distinctive precedence of the righteous. The special attention of the student is called to the Jewish view (Bickersteth’s Guide, p. 185, Brookes’s Essays, p. 12, etc.) which restricts the resurrection. Thus Aben Ezra in his Com., as quoted by various writers, says: “Those who awake shall be (appointed) to everlasting life, and those who awake not shall be (doomed) to shame and everlasting contempt.” Gaon says, “This is the resuscitation of the dead of Israel, whose lot is to eternal life, and those who shall not awake are the forsaken of Jehovah.” So also the Sohar, Midrash Mishle, 4 Esdras 2, Torath Adam, etc Pococke, Lightfoot, Mede, and others, have produced Rabbinical statements showing the Jewish belief in a limited corporeal resurrection when the Kingdom of the Messiah shall be instituted, and Lightfoot and others (under the misapprehension that the Christian Church was this Kingdom, and overlooking the Jewish restoration, etc., linked with this resurrection) have actually pointed to the cases of resurrection recorded in the Gospels as “parallel to the expectations of the Jews,” and therefore a proof that Jesus was the Messiah. Bertholdt, Kranichfeld, Füller, Köstlin (Lange’s Com. Dan. loci) and others refer these raised ones solely to the Jewish nation. While there is force in this exclusive notion (because Daniel’s predictions relate to the destiny of the Jewish nation), yet in it we must also (as hitherto shown in detail) include the engrafted, adopted sons and daughters of Abraham, accounted worthy of so high an honor.]
Obs. 3. But we have stronger evidence than this even in the chapter, for the resurrection of the righteous being mentioned; God graciously assures Daniel himself that he shall be among those many thus favored. In Dan_12:13, we read: “But go thou thy way till the end be; for thou shalt rest and stand in thy lot, at the end of the days.” It being foreign to our design to discuss prophetic periods, it is only necessary to say that, taking the admissions of a host of Anti-Millenarians and others, these prophetical days being, in accord with prophetical usage, years, no matter what period is assigned to their commencement, they require many centuries before their close. And hence the promise to Daniel at “the end of the days” is to be witnessed, after a long series of years has passed, even, as many contend, extending down to the Millennial age. At least, if we limit these periods to literal days, there is not a particle of proof that the promise was realized in Daniel’s case.321 [Note: 21 321. This is attempted by a class of interpreters who may be justly styled Antiochus Epiphanites, since they find nothing in these predictions (concluding part of Daniel 11 and 12) but what relates to Antiochus. They sustain about the same relation to us that Porphyry did to many in the third century. But they utterly fail to show such a fulfillment as the prophecy demands, both as to time and matter. It is to be regretted that some able writers have, more or less, received of their leaven. Even Auberlen (On Dan.) thinks that the mention in Dan_12:2 of the resurrection was merely to incite to faithful perseverance in the persecutions of Antiochus, because the phrase “at that time” is omitted, and hence that there is no chronological connection. But this certainly can only be adduced in support of the Antiochan theory, seeing that the emphasis being twice given in Dan_12:1, it would have been mere redundancy to repeat; that Daniel’s resurrection stands related to the same period; that the resurrection is associated in Scripture with the time of deliverance of the nation; that the general complexion of the prediction, as well as the unity of Scripture, demands a fulfillment in chronological connection. Some take the dates given as referring to days, but link them with the same periods in Rev. pertaining to Antichrist’s career (with good reasons), but there is one serious antagonism, viz., Daniel’s resurrection follows the end of these in Daniel, but (Apocalypse 11:18) precedes those of Revelation.] Down to the present day Daniel has not yet stood up in his lot, and, if we leave due weight to one pregnant expression, we can plainly see the reason why it is not yet fulfilled-“when He shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished.” Then the end of these days has come, and then God’s promise is verified; not sooner and not later. But look at history and the facts as they exist today. Are not the Jewish people still dispersed and their power scattered among the nations of the earth? Is not Jerusalem itself still trodden down by Gentiles? How, then, can it be said that God’s purpose in reference to this people has been accomplished in this respect, when we see it going on before our eyes? No! the end has not yet come, but as God’s promises are sure, and now Yea and Amen in Christ, when the end of Jewish tribulation and dispersion comes a glorious resurrection also comes in which Daniel will participate. In noticing the promise, it is legitimate to avail ourselves of the admissions of those who oppose our Millenarian views, and it ought to be accepted as impartial evidence. Barnes (Com. Dan. loci), after showing that Daniel could not possibly have lived during the entire period of the events previously enumerated without experiencing death, advocates the standing up at the end of the days to mean a literal resurrection, saying: “This is admitted by Lengerke, by Maurer, and even by Bertholdt, to be the meaning, although he applies it to the reign of the Messiah. No other interpretation, therefore, can be affixed to this, than that it implies the doctrine of the resurrection of the dead, and that the mind of Daniel was directed onward to that. With this great and glorious doctrine the book appropriately closes.” The death of Daniel, before the events predicted come to pass, is announced in the “for thou shalt rest.” This is appropriate language in view of the previous “sleep in the dust.” But we again leave Barnes explain: “During that long interval Daniel would ‘rest.’ He would quietly and calmly ‘sleep in the dust of the earth,’ in the grave.” “I do not see that it is possible to explain the language on any other supposition than this. The word rendered ‘shalt rest’ would be well applied to the rest in the grave. So it is used in Job_3:13 ‘then had I been at rest,’ Job_3:17, ‘there the weary be at rest.’” The language of the promise, too, implies the personal presence of Daniel at the time the end shall be. More than this, it is requisite, for then he is to obtain his “lot.” Now, whatever meaning is attached to “the lot,” whether of station, rank, degree, etc., it is certain from numerous promises that Christians are represented as receiving their “lot” after the resurrection is experienced. Daniel receives his portion or reward allotted to him by God. But when? Turning to Rev_11:15-18, under the last trumpet, preceding the Millennial era, we find “the time of the dead that they should be judged and that Thou shouldest give reward unto Thy servants, the prophets.” Such is the striking harmony of the utterances of the divine Spirit, indicating a Pre-Millennial resurrection.322 [Note: 22 322. Even Augustine (City of God, b. 20, c. 23) interprets Dan_12:13 as referring to Daniel’s literal resurrection. Daniel is among “the prophets” who are rewarded when the Millennial period commences. The happiness of the one class is mentioned, giving them a certain precedence, and is linked with the restoration of the Jews. The original division of the holy land by lot, led to all portions, appointments being called lots, and this has been introduced into the New Testament, as many critics have noticed. Daniel’s lot which he receives may be seen, e.g. in Act_26:18; Eph_1:15-16, etc., where the Greek word is either “lot” or “allotted portion,” as noticed by commentators. The resurrection of Daniel, it may be added, utterly disproves the theory of Universalists, Swedenborgians, and others, and recently advocated, as the teaching of Jesus, by Reuss (His. Ch. Theol., p. 221), “that there can be no interval between the present life and the future, between death and the resurrection,” for Daniel was to be raised up, not at or immediately after his death, but at the end of the days, i.e. after the interval of a certain, well-defined period of time. The same is confirmed by the resurrection of Jesus, the resurrection of saints at the resurrection of Jesus, the saints under the altar, which also had an interval. Faber (Diss. on Proph., p. 97, footnote), when he comes to this passage, is forced to admit that “it gives some warrant to Mr. Mede’s opinion, that the first resurrection, which precedes the Millennium,… will be a literal resurrection of the saints and martyrs.” Fausset (Com. loci) comments on the “rest” in the grave. He, like his people Israel, was to wait patiently and confidently for the blessing till God’s time. He “received not the promise,” but had to wait until the Christian elect saints should be brought in, at the first resurrection, that he and the other Old Testament saints “without us should not be made perfect” (Heb_11:46). Barbour (Three Worlds) endeavors to make the resurrection of Daniel 12, because the expression “thy people” is used, to refer exclusively to Jewish people according to the flesh and not to the Gospel Church (the book being “the writing of the house of Israel,” Eze_13:9). It is true that the resurrection refers to “the house of Israel,” Daniel’s people, but it is equally true (as our line of argument has proven step by step) that true members of the Christian Church are connected by virtue of engrafting and adoption with this house, being regarded as “the children of Abraham, ‘and hence participate in all the blessings of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. We dare not narrow down, as some do, “the first-born” to Christian believers and exclude the worthies of the Hebrews, when the covenant foundation, inheritance, etc., are the same. The prophets describe the house of Israel as amazed when through the power of the resurrection these “children of Abraham” are revealed and exalted. Zöchler (Lange’s Com. Dan. loci.) explains this passage relating to Daniel: “Thou shalt rest in the grave, in the quiet sleep of death (cf. Isa_57:2, and supra Dan_12:2),” “that thou mayest receive thy portion of the inheritance at the judgment of eternal recompense; cf. Dan_7:18; Dan_7:27; Rev_20:6.” He remarks respecting “the lot” that it refers to “the inheritance of the saints in light (Col_1:12), which shall be possessed by the righteous after the resurrection of the dead in the heavenly Jerusalem.” He says that with this view agree “a majority of interpreters.”]
Obs. 4. However ultra it may seem to some,323 [Note: 23 323. Because so many commentators, while admitting that the language is derived from the doctrine of the resurrection, yet, interpret it either as a moral or spiritual renovation, or an ecclesiastical or civil or national restoration. Jerome was one among the first who applied this vision to the restoration of the Jews, and yet he is forced to admit that it is “a similitude drawn from the resurrection.” But as these writers also profess to find but little of a resurrection in the Old Testament, how could a similitude drawn from such a source, if unknown, be of any force if the doctrine of the resurrection were not one already familiar?] we are willing to, and readily do, accept of Eze_37:1-14 as teaching a Pre-Millennial resurrection. This view was held by the Jews (e.g. 2Es_2:16; 2Es_2:23; 2Es_2:31), by the early Church (being quoted by Irenaeus, * Against Heresies, Justin, in * Tertullian in chs. *, *, On the resurrection of the Flesh, and Greg. Nazianzen, Funer. Oration, e.g. by others), and by different writers from that period to the present. Some authors, not entirely satisfied with a figurative application, give a twofold fulfillment, one a spiritual or civil, and the other literal, as e.g. Dr. Clarke, Com. loci, who also admits that it has an ultimate reference to “the resurrection of the body.” Others, as Rationalists, etc., receive it as teaching a literal resurrection, but reject it as a “Jewish figment.” While still others, as Delitzsch (Sys. of Bib. Psyc., p. 485, in response to Hofman, who advocated that Isa_26:19 and Eze_37:1-14 contained figures of restoration), and many Millenarians, hold that such a literal resurrection is taught as covenant promises require. The reasons which influence us to such a belief are the following: (1) The explanation given by God Himself of the vision indicates a literal resurrection. The vision of the dry bones extends from Eze_37:1-10, and if this were all, then, indeed, we might be at a loss to determine its exact meaning, but God appends to it an explanation; and, like in all explanatory clauses, we have no right to spiritualize them away. It is weakness to place the vision and the explanation in the same category, and treat the one like the other. We dare not, without disrespect to the Divine explanation, make it denote something quite different from what the words truly and actually represent. Keeping in view the distinction, overlooked by the multitude, between the vision and its interpretation by the Spirit, how else can we receive the words, unless teaching the doctrine we claim, when it says: “I will open your graves and cause you to come up out of your graves,” etc. (2) It is scarcely consistent for the resurrection of the body (whatever may be true of the simple word resurrection) to be taken as a figure or symbol of the renovation of the soul, seeing that in the Scriptures a moral change of the soul is uniformly held to be a prelude to a blessed resurrection of the body unto life. This would be reversing the order of events, and involving a certain incongruity. It is nowhere done unless this and Revelation 20 form exceptions to a general rule. (3) The language, “Behold they say, ‘our bones are dried and our hope is lost,’” shows that a corporeal resurrection is meant. For, if we turn to Psa_141:7, this is the expressive complaint of the house of Israel, “our bones are scattered at the grave’s mouth as when one cutteth and cleaveth wood on the earth,” and God here gives the assurance that these very “bones scattered at the grave’s mouth,” shall be again raised up. In the 89th Psalm, where this lost hope is plaintively presented, we have the covenant, and the assurance that David’s Son shall gloriously reign on David’s throne; then follows, however, the prediction of the casting down of David’s crown and throne to the ground, of the cast-off condition of the nation and the non-fulfillment of the covenant, and the question is asked, “How long?” Then follows: “Remember how short my time is; wherefore hast Thou made all men in vain? What man is he that liveth and shall not see death? Shall he deliver his soul from the hand of the grave? Lord, where are Thy former lovingkindnesses which Thou swarest unto David in Thy truth?” How is this hope so lost, even absorbed by the all-devouring grave, to be realized? The plain, God-given answer comes to us in this passage of Ezekiel, if we will only receive it. Here the question asked in Psa_35:10 is replied to; and prophet after prophet assures us that when this shall occur “those bones shall flourish as an herb.” It is in accord with this that David in Psalms 31 affirms that although his “bones are consumed” and in his “haste” he said, “I am cut off from before Thine eyes,” he will trust in God for deliverance, because the wicked alone shall “be ashamed” and “be silent in the grave.” This confidence is again and again declared, so that the bones given over into “the hand of the grave” shall “come up out of the grave.” God says that the house of Israel declares “our hope is lost and we are cut off.” In Lam_3:18, we read, “And I said, my strength and my hope is perished from the Lord,” but farther on the prophet again professes hope “for the Lord will not cast off forever… to crush under His feet all the prisoners of the earth.” No! some of those “prisoners of the earth,” which (as we shall hereafter show) are the dead that the earth holds in confinement, which are now “dwelling in the dust” (Isa_26:19), “the earth shall cast out.” The “prisoners of hope,” Zec_9:12, shall be delivered according to the “hope toward God,” expressed by Paul, Act_24:15. The analogy of faith, the appeal of God to words connected with corporeal death, and the stubborn fact itself that the covenant given by God to Abraham and David cannot possibly be realized until the enemy death, which holds its chosen ones, is overcome, these things prove, what so many pious have joyfully accepted, a literal resurrection, by which the grave is made to surrender those to whom precious covenant promises were made. Now, indeed, the enemy triumphs; they are cut off “from the land of the living;” faith and hope almost falters at the gloomy prospect; wise men here and there declare it is folly to expect its realization; scientists insist upon its impossibility; even good men think it too much to anticipate, and explain it away; but God, the Almighty, points to this very faltering faith and hope, produced by literal death, and in His gracious majesty speaks: “Then shall ye know that I the Lord have spoken it and performed it.” How can we change God’s words or challenge His work? (4) The emphatic language here is corroborated by other examples. Thus e.g. when we keep in view how the Jews understood this vision and explanation, then the language of Jesus addressed to Jews is a confirmation of a literal resurrection. For in Joh_5:28-29 the expression of Ezekiel is almost repeated “all that are in their graves” shall “come forth,” and this, too, in connection with what He said, that this raising up shall be (e.g. Joh_6:39-40; Joh_6:44) “at the last day” as the Jews held (comp. Joh_11:24).324 [Note: 24 324. Even in Joh_5:25, while we need not discard the idea of a moral renovation yet it is not necessary for a consistent interpretation with existing facts, seeing that the “now is” may be referred to the literal resurrection of the actual dead raised to life by Jesus, and the dead raised by Him at His own resurrection, which occurred at this period. It may be added: Surely the partial quotation of Ezekiel and the application made of it by Jesus, should cause us to receive with caution the idea (Calvin, etc.) that it is a mere image or similitude drawn from the resurrection. In reference to the use of the word “graves,” while we hold this to be literal and for good reasons, we are satisfied with the concession and argument of one of our opponents, who by his reasoning on Christ’s language entirely demolishes his own interpretation given to Ezekiel. Thus Barnes, Com. Joh_5:29, says: “He speaks of those who are in their graves, evidently referring to the dead. Sinners are sometimes said to be dead in sin. but sinners are not said to be in a grave. This is applied in the Scriptures only to those who are deceased.” If this is true, what becomes of his own spiritualizing of Ezekiel’s vision? Augustine and others suppose that in Joh_5:25-26, because of the phrase “now is,” there is a reference to a spiritual or moral resurrection. But this is opposed to the facts as they took place. “The hour is coming” alludes to the great predicted time coming of a bodily resurrection; “and now is” indicates that even now, at that time, a bodily resurrection was to be experienced in the few raised by Jesus, in the resurrection of Himself and of the many at His resurrection. The entire connection and parallel passages show a reference to a bodily resurrection, for if it is to be limited, as Augustine, etc., it proves too much for their own theory, viz., it would confine moral renovation, etc., to the time after the First Advent and exclude that experienced previously.] Again, Hos_13:14, “I will ransom them from the power of the grave,” etc., contains the same ideas, and Paul applies it directly to the resurrection of the righteous. Hence, in view of the application of similar language by Jesus and Paul, corroborating Jewish views of Ezekiel, we cordially accept of it in the same spirit. (5) The expression “bring you into the land of Israel,” which has led so many to apply this figuratively to a “national restoration,” under the supposition that mortal men in this life are only alluded to, is, instead of a stumbling-block, indispensable in such a resurrection. The covenant, if Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob are to personally inherit the land, the covenant promises, if the meek are to inherit the land, etc., absolutely demands just such bringing of the dead ones into the land of Israel, the promised inheritance. Ezekiel only establishes what the Millennial descriptions present, viz., a return of the ransomed of the Lord to this identical land, as the most sacred of God’s assurances declare. (6) This description of the prophet is too sublime and wide-reaching in its sweep to be regarded as fulfilled in the weak and partial restoration of the Jews under the Persian kings and afterward. The facts are not equal to the representation; and the Jews themselves, who experienced this restoration, had no such idea of its performance. It is a belittling of the prophecy to confine it to such an event; it is a dwindling away of God’s appeal in reference to the knowledge obtained of His Omnipotence when this should occur; it is a frittering away of the promised gathering of “the whole house of Israel,” of the implied continued prosperity, of the union, strength, etc., then granted to them. No! greater, inestimable greater blessings than God’s people have ever yet realized are embraced in this precious promise, even those connected with a literal, Pre-Millennial resurrection.325 [Note: 25 325. To give the reader an idea how this passage is interpreted we append two illustrations. Romaine (Crit. Review, vol. 2) has a sermon on Eze_37:4, etc., “The Parable of the Dry Bones.” He frankly tells us that every word applicable to a sensible object conveys an idea of some corresponding spiritual object, or teaches heavenly things under the garb of earthly (i.e. at the option of the interpreter). But after all it has two meanings: (1) That the Jewish Church, led away captive to Babylon, was restored to its civil and ecclesiastical life or polity; (2) that the dry bones indicate deadness in sin, and the resurrection a revival to newness of life-dryness is equivalent to exceeding deadness of the sinful soul, shaking is a perturbation in the soul of the sinner, coming together denotes merely externals and no life until the Spirit comes and converts. Waldegrave in his Lectures gives this as the signification: “They (the imagery) signify that the Israelitish people, which had long lain politically and ecclesiastically dead, should be, by the mighty hand of their God, recovered from that state, and become once more a flourishing church and state.” Strange that men can fritter away this magnificent prophecy in an application to the feeble condition and oppressed state of the Jewish nation after the Babylonian captivity. Take the spiritualizing method and apply it to any Scripture, and see the result. The plainest passages dwindle away before its transforming power. Thus e.g. apply it to Mat_27:52-53, and it may be said “the graves were opened” means delivered from bondage; “and many bodies of the saints which slept, arose,” denotes that “sleeping” they were ignorant, blind, deluded, but “arising” they were morally quickened; “and came out of their graves,” that is, out of their bondage, etc. This is, to say the least, a deceptive way of dealing with Scripture (comp. Prop. 4). The utter inconsistency of our opponents’ position is thus made manifest. Coming to Rev_20:4-6, they tell us that if a literal resurrection is meant, it should be stated that the saints come “out of the graves,” receive their “bodies,” etc. But that this, even if given, would make no material difference, and that it would be explained away like the rest, is made apparent from the treatment which Ezekiel’s vision meets with at their hands-for here, where the fact of coming “out of the graves,” etc., is mentioned, the resurrection is still denied. Many concessions, however, might easily be gathered from our opponents which vitiate their own system. Even Barrow (Works, vol. 2, p. 565), on the resurrection of the body, quotes Ezekiel 37 as sustaining the notion of a literal resurrection. Parallel passages are admitted to refer to a resurrection, as e.g. Augustine (City of God, b. 20, ch. 21) explains Isa_66:12-16, to be realized after the Second Advent, and that “your bones shall rise up as an herb” alludes “to the resurrection,” “a bodily resurrection.” The Jews (comp. e.g. Westminster Review, Oct., 1861, p. 246) held that Ezekiel 37 taught a literal resurrection, and Paul in Act_26:6-7, evidently alludes to this belief when (as Clarke Com. loci.) he speaks of “the hope of the resurrection of the dead,” to which hope realized “the tribes” expect “to come” (and to which Paul, as Bh. Pearce shows, using the same word, also hopes, Php_3:11, “to come” or “attain to”). Incidental proof abounds showing that this resurrection is linked with the Kingdom. Thus e.g. Luk_14:15 affords one. For after Christ had indicated to the Pharisee how to make a feast that he might “be recompensed at the resurrection of the just,” one who sat at meat, associating, as the Jews were accustomed to do, this allusion to the resurrection with the Kingdom, said: “Blessed is he that shall eat bread in the Kingdom of God.” Christ in His reply confirms this association of ideas, for instead of correcting it as erroneous, He virtually endorses it by stating that all are invited to such blessedness, but that many reject it, etc. Jerome, Scott, Lowth, literally hundreds, while spiritualizing or misapplying the prediction, declare that “it was also a clear intimation of the resurrection of the dead,” being “a similitude drawn from the resurrection.” But is it a similitude? And if such where then was the doctrine of a resurrection taught?
To indicate how the earliest fathers of the Church interpreted this and other passages, we quote Irenaeus (Ag. Her., ch. 37) as follows: “Isaiah plainly declares (Isa_26:19) similar happiness at the resurrection of the just: thus saying, ‘Thy dead men shall arise, and those in the tombs shall rise, and they shall rejoice who are in the earth. For thy dew is salvation to them. Ezekiel says (Eze_37:12; Eze_37:14) the same, ‘Behold, I will open your graves, and lead you forth from your tombs, in order that I may lead forth from their sepulchres my people, and I will put the Spirit in you, and ye shall know that I am the Lord.’” This he applies to the Pre-Millennial resurrection of the just, in order that covenant promises may be verified. Many learned men, under the lofty self-exalting influence of spiritualizing, smile at the alleged simplicity and ignorance of such Fathers, when the latter evidence a far greater logical consistency than the former. Perhaps the most flippant of all objections is that urged by Schröder (Lange’s Com. Ezek., p. 354) in declaring: “They are, however, not the bones of deceased men, but of slain men, as expressly stated in Eze_37:9.” A mere tyro need only refer to a concordance under the words “slay,” “slain,” etc., and he will find that all that fall under the enemy death are also thus represented. Besides he does not, in his attenuated interpretation, show how such slain ones are restored. In reference to “the whole house of Israel,” we only now say that it includes the dead of Judah and Israel, together with all the engrafted “children of Abraham.”]
Obs. 5. Numerous passages plainly teach a Pre-Millennial resurrection. Thus, e.g. Jer_31:15-17, “a voice was heard in Ramah, lamentation and bitter weeping; Rachel weeping for her children refused to be comforted for her children, because they were not. Thus saith the Lord: Refrain thy voice from weeping and thine eyes from tears; for thy work shall be rewarded, saith the Lord; and they shall come again from the land of the enemy. And there is hope in thine end, saith the Lord, that thy children shall come again to their own border.” This is applied (Mat_2:17-18) to a literal slaughter, and the resurrection promised is also literal. But this does not fulfill the entire promise; for it includes not only a raising up from the dead, a return from the land of the enemy death, but a return, a “coming again to their own border,” to the very land where the enemy triumphed over them. The time when this is to take place is specified in the context, Mat_2:10-14, when Jacob is “redeemed and ransomed from the hand of him that was stronger than he.”326 [Note: 26 326. The application made by Matthew of the passage in Jeremiah forbids our receiving the common interpretation that the prophecy refers to the captivity of the Jews, etc. The phraseology is indicative of death, and deliverance from the same; a reunion with Rachel is implied, and in their own land, thus corresponding with covenant promise. Fausset (Com. loci.) correctly declares that this is “to be fulfilled ultimately, when Rachel shall meet her murdered children at the resurrection, at the same time that literal Israel is to be restored.” This is in agreement with Moses, Isaiah, Ezekiel, Daniel, and others. This passage is intensely interesting, because it answers the question whether little children (comp. with Matthew) will participate in this resurrection. The answer is given by God Himself in the affirmative. Those who apply it to the past restoration from captivity belittle the promise.] The same spirit characterizes Hannah’s prayer (I Samuel 2), which the Chaldee version (Dr. Clarke) says, “And Hannah prayed in the spirit of prophecy,” in which the resurrection is pointedly predicted, “the Lord killeth and maketh alive; He bringeth down to the grave and bringeth up.” The Jews (see Targums, quoted by Dr. Clarke, Com. loci) so understood it. But this is connected even with a period when vengeance comes, the righteous are exalted, and the “wicked are silent in darkness;” and if reference is made to the parallel passage in Deu_32:39, it is also connected with a time of vengeance, deliverance of God’s people, and God’s land.327 [Note: 27 327. Dr. Etheridge’s Targums gives the following: The Targum of Palestine, “When the Word of the Lord shall reveal Himself to redeem His people, He will say to all nations: Behold now, that I am He who Am and Was, and Will Be, and there is no other God beside Me; I, in my Word, kill and make alive; I smite the people of the Beth Israel and I will heal them at the end of the days; and there will be none who can deliver them from my hand, Gog and his armies whom I have permitted to make war against them.” The Jerusalem Targum, “See now that I in my Word am He and there is no other God beside Me. I kill the living in this world and make alive the dead in the world that cometh; I am He who smiteth and I am He who healeth, and there is none who can deliver from my hand.” See the context.] The faith that David expressed in Psalms 142, 116, 27, etc., of finally walking before, or in the presence of, the Lord “in the land of the living,” is one in such a resurrection. This is seen by noticing the context, and by comparing of Scripture. Thus in Psalms 142 he describes his trouble by which he is brought “very low,” even into “prison” (which a comparison shows is the grave), for his enemy is stronger than he. But he expresses the hope that God will be his “portion in the land of the living,” and that God will “bring my soul out of prison, that I may praise Thy name; the righteous shall compass me about; for Thou shalt deal bountifully with me.” In Psalms 116, he is plainer, telling us that “the sorrows of death compassed me and the pains of hell got hold upon me.” He then prays that God would “deliver my soul,” adding his trust: “Return unto thy rest, O my soul, for the Lord hath dealt bountifully with me. For Thou hast delivered my soul from death, mine eyes from tears and my feet from falling. I will walk before the Lord in the land of the living.” This faith, in an ultimate happy deliverance from the power of death, causes him to say: “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints;” and, exulting in the hope set before him, declares, “Thou hast loosed my bonds,” and that he, David, shall praise “in the Lord’s house, in the midst of thee, O Jerusalem.” Here, then, death is an enemy; David fell under this enemy and is bound by him in a prison; but he shall yet triumph over this enemy through the power of God; he shall return again to the promised rest, praise God, associate with all the righteous, and enjoy the blessings of Jerusalem.328 [Note: 28 328. The reader will notice how this was interpreted as relating to the resurrection by the early Church and retained as late as a.d. 476, as seen in the extract we have given, Prop. 75, taken from Gelasius of Cysicus. If the Psalms, etc., are examined from this covenanted standpoint many allusions are based on this doctrine of a resurrection assumed. Thus e.g., in Psalms 52, we have the wicked “rooted out of the land of the living” and the righteous in safety and exalted, corresponding with the tenor of the Word. In Psalms 56, after asserting that God would “deliver my soul from death,” it is “that I may walk before God in the light of the living.” Psa_41:8; Psa_41:10, which even Augustine (City of God, b. 17, ch. 18) refers to a resurrection, implies it by “the raising up” and “by this I know that Thou favorest me because mine enemy doth not triumph over me.” In the Analysis of Psalms 118, Dr. Clarke, Com. loci., refers the day of Psa_118:24 to the day of resurrection, but we would rather refer it to the Millennial day, the blessed day of Christ, preceded by a reference to the resurrection in the words: “I shall not die,” i.e. shall not always be under the dominion of death (comp. Joh_6:54; Joh_6:58), “but live and declare the words of the Lord. The Lord hath chastened me sore; but He hath not given me over to death.” The “prisoners of hope,” Zec_9:11-12, are released out of “the pit” in virtue of “the blood” of the “covenant.” This we have shown, and therefore Christ has power over death to deliver His own. The context shows when these prisoners are released, viz., at a period of restoration.] The detention in the grave is figuratively represented by “a prison,” “prisoner,” “captive,” “captivity,” etc. In Isa_42:7; Isa_61:1; Isa_49:9, etc., where it is promised that Christ shall “bring out the prisoners from the prison and them that sit in the darkness out of the prison house,” that He shall bestow “liberty to the captives and the opening of the prison to them that are bound,” these things primarily describe the resurrection, for the simple reason that “the year of the Lord” and the restoration and blessings promised in immediate connection cannot be inaugurated, according to the tenor of prophecy, without such a resurrection.329 [Note: 29 329. If we take the English version of Isa_53:8, Jesus Himself was “a prisoner,” i.e. as many explain it, experienced “a detention by death.” Bush (Anas.) argues at length that the passage refers to the resurrection of Jesus. Admit this, and the reader can see how much Scripture receives new light and direction from Christ’s death and resurrection thus represented. It may be added that Calmet and others think that the phrase “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints” means that “the saints are too precious in the Lord’s sight, lightly to give them over to death,” for “death shall be swallowed up in victory,” etc.] The people now are given up as a prey to the enemy death, and are forcibly represented as “hid in prison houses,” Isa_42:22, as “prisoners resting together” Job_3:18, as “prisoners of the earth,” Lam_3:34, as “the lawful captives,” or (marg. reading) “the captivity of the just,” Isa_49:24, etc. This idea accords with Psalms 79, where, after describing the desolations of Jerusalem, the fact that “the blood” of the saints has been shed and their “dead bodies” have been exposed, the Psalmist significantly asks: “How long, O Lord?” Then praying for God’s help, he says: “Let the sighing of the prisoner come before Thee; according to the greatness of Thy power preserve Thou those that are appointed to die.” What the Prophet means by this is apparent from Psalms 102, where, after complaining that “days are consumed,” that he is “cast down” and “withered like grass,” he relies on the blessed truths that God “endures forever,” that He shall “arise and have mercy on Zion,” adding “when the Lord shall build up Zion, He shall appear in His glory” (not humiliation), “He will regard the prayer of the destitute and not despise their prayer. This shall be written for the generation to come; and the people which shall be created shall praise the Lord. For, He hath looked down from the height of His sanctuary; from heaven did the Lord behold the earth; to hear the groaning of the prisoner; to loose those that are appointed to death (Heb. the children of death); to declare the name of the Lord in Zion and His praise in Jerusalem; when the people are gathered together, and the Kingdoms, to serve the Lord.” What else, if the prayer of these prisoners is ever answered, but a Pre-Millennial resurrection is to be anticipated? For, taking such passages together, what have we here but a reference by the prophet to his own death and to dead saints, to the ability of God to raise them up or deliver them, to “the set time to favor Zion,” which is to come when the Lord shall appear the second time unto salvation, and this prayer to be released from death shall be answered, to a joyful gathering of the people to praise the Lord in Jerusalem, when “the children of death” shall be loosened? If we were only prepared to receive it, we would find the Bible full of this Divine Purpose, and that the unity of the Spirit teaches it again and again, sometimes briefly, or concisely, or even obscurely, and sometimes openly and more fully. Even in such a Psalms as the 69th, faith grasps the resurrection, in the words: “The Lord heareth the poor and despiseth not His prisoners,” for death is brought before us in the preceding verses, when suddenly the strain is changed into exultation, and we are told that the prisoner shall be released, and they shall return with praise to the holy land.
Obs. 6. So interesting is this subject and abundant the material (showing how the Spirit regards it), that the reader will pardon us, if additional illustrations are given. Thus the word “hell” is used to denote the grave.330 [Note: 30 330. Christ was delivered from it, Psa_16:10, comp. Act_2:27; Act_2:31; the saints are delivered from it, 1Co_15:55, marg. reading (German Version, etc.). Any commentary or concordance will give examples. Our argument has nothing to do with the question of other meanings, but with the simple fact that the words Sheol and Hades are used to denote the grave or the place of the dead. Many writers correctly infer that Mat_16:18, “the gates of hell shalt not prevail against it,” includes a direct reference to the resurrection, viz., that the power of death, decimating the Church, shall be destroyed-its prisoners being released. Lange presents the view of such in the following: “The leading thought in these words, is the triumph of life over death, of the Kingdom of the resurrection over the usurped reign of the Kingdom of Hades.”] If we turn to Psalms 86, the hope is expressed, “Thou hast delivered my soul from the lowest hell” (marg. reading is “grave”), and while praise is tendered for such deliverance, the wicked shall be “ashamed.” Other passages could be adduced, but let us take a clearer one, the representation of the grave by “the land of darkness,” “the shadow of death,” “darkness,” etc. (Job_10:21-22; Psa_88:18; Ecc_6:4; Psa_143:3, etc.). In various predictions the saints are to be delivered from this darkness, just as the Millennial era is to be ushered in, and this prepares us the better to appreciate the force of Col_1:12-13, “Giving thanks unto the Father which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light; who” (at the time the inheritance is given) “hath delivered us from the power of darkness” (the grave or place of the dead), “and hath translated us into the Kingdom of His dear Son.” That this “power of darkness” refers to the enemy death or grave is proven by the use made of the expression by Jesus, Luk_22:53, who, when the Jews came with stones and swords to take Him, knowing the predetermined result death and the grave, said: “This is your hour and the power of darkness” (comp. Joh_12:27; Mic_7:8, etc.). So the reverse of darkness, viz., “light,” is employed to denote the removal of the darkness of the grave at the resurrection morn, and forms a remarkable feature in the opening, etc., of Millennial descriptions. The manner in which the Spirit introduces the words “enemy,” “sleep,” “prey,” “pit,” “awake,” “dust,” “quicken,”331 [Note: 31 331. Thus e.g. in reference to sleeping and awaking, Knapp (Ch. Theol., 151, 1) remarks: “Death was compared with sleep and the dead body with a sleeping person. Hence the terms which literally signify to awake, to rise up, to rise out of sleep, are also used to denote the resurrection of the lifeless body.” This was well understood by the early Fathers, so that Justin Martyr (First Apol. c. 38) and Augustine (City of God, b. 17, c. 18, b. 16, s. 41) thus interpret Psa_3:5 (to death of Christ), and the latter also, in the expression “who shall awake him.” The same is true of Dan_12:2, etc. As to “quicken,” compare e.g. Barnes Com. on 1Pe_3:18. Our opponents, themselves, give us the proper interpretation and application, although they cannot logically fit it into their system.] etc., shows how prominently the notion of a Pre-Millennial resurrection is incorporated in the Scriptures. Let us e.g. take “quicken,” which Paul forcibly employs in Romans 8 to prove that God will fulfill His promise to Abraham to be “heir of the world,” and that “the promise might be made sure to all the seed,” by saying: “God who quickeneth the dead.” (Comp. Rom_8:11; Rom_4:17; Joh_5:21; Psa_3:18.) Now, allow this New Testament confirmatory usage to be adopted as an interpreting guide, and we have Psalms 71 pointedly expressing this resurrection: “Thou shalt quicken me again and shalt bring me up again from the depths of the earth;” and then speaks of his “greatness” being increased here on the earth. Comp. Psa_80:17-18; Psa_143:11, etc., keeping in view the key note given by 1Pe_3:18, where Christ Himself is raised from the dead, being “quickened.” This becomes decisive when the fact is observed that the resurrection from the dead is represented as “a birth,” “a begetting,” “a regeneration.” Notice that Christ’s resurrection is (Heb_1:5-6, comp. with Act_13:33; Rom_8:29, etc.) a begetting or being born again, so that He is, in virtue of this second birth, called, Col_1:18, “the first-born from the dead,” and in Rev_1:5, “the first begotten of the dead.”332 [Note: 32 332. The reader will of course notice the reason that such a title is given to Jesus; because, as some think, while others were raised from death before Him they were again subjected to death. He is the first one raised who was never again under the dominion of death; or if, as others think, they were not subjected to death, then it is given because He pertains pre-eminently to the firstborn and is the cause of their being included among them.] What a flood of light this phraseology throws on the Pre-Millennial resurrection; for surely, if the appropriate figure of a birth is thus applied to the resurrection of the Head, designedly too, we are not perverting the Word if we accept of the same in reference to the members. Let us see what the Spirit says, e.g. in Isa_66:7-9, “Before she travailed, she brought forth; before her pain came, she was delivered of a manchild.333 [Note: 33 333. For the student of prophecy we append two considerations: (1) This preeminent resurrection takes place before the last tribulation. (2) Has not the “male child” a reference to the priority of the resurrection and the special honor of these resurrection saints, because it seems to be foreshadowed by “the male being the Lord’s” of the firstborn (Exo_13:12, etc.) and had to be redeemed. Tertullian (On resurrection, ch. 31) and many others refer this passage to a resurrection over against Baldwin’s (Armageddon, p. 87) absurdity, who makes the United States to be “a nation born at once” on July 4th, 1776. Fausset (Com. loci.) and others apply this to the sudden restoration of the Jewish nation, but far more is intended. For, in connection with such a restoration (as in Isaiah 26, Daniel 12, Ezekiel 37, etc.) a glorious resurrection is related, and there is no reason why the same should be ignored here, for Augustine even (City of God, b. 20, ch. 21) quotes “and your bones shall rise up as an herb,” as “alluding to the resurrection” and “a bodily one.”] Who hath heard such a thing? Shalt the earth be made to bring forth in one day? Or, shall a nation be born at once? For, as soon as Zion travailed, she brought forth her children. Shall I bring to the birth and not cause to bring forth? saith the Lord; shall I cause to bring forth and shut the womb? said the Lord,” etc. Here we have the earth (not church) bringing forth at the appearing of the Lord (Isa_66:5), at a time of vengeance (Isa_66:6), at the ushering in of Millennial glory (Isa_66:10-14), at a time when the wicked are to be ashamed and utterly removed (Isa_66:5; Isa_66:15, etc.), at the time new heavens and new earth are created (Isa_66:22), at a gathering and overthrow of nations, etc. And, moreover, those thus born are to enjoy this very Millennial blessedness, while the wicked are so cut off as to become “an abhorring to all flesh.” This corresponds precisely with the statements of events preceding the Millennium; while the suddenness of the event, the brevity of time in which it is accomplished, the astounding and unexampled nature of the occurrence, all confirms its denoting the resurrection. Then Mic_5:3-4 has a remarkable disclosure on this point; for after describing the smiting of the Judge of Israel, the very Ruler of Israel that came to them, the result of that smiting, as witnessed by us in the rejection of the Jewish nation during the times of the Gentiles, is alluded to: “Therefore will He give them up until the time that she which travaileth hath brought forth.” This birth is delayed during the dispersion of the Jews; it is not to be experienced until the time when their restoration comes; it is connected with a revelation of the strength and majesty of Christ’s rule. Hence this being born again, this regeneration is referred by Jesus to the future in Mat_19:28, to the period when “the Son of Man shall sit in the throne of His glory,” and the apostles shall “sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.” For the word translated “regeneration” means “born again,” and was anciently employed to denote the resurrection.334 [Note: 34 334. The Jews represented a resurrection under the figure of a birth, and Knapp (Ch. Theol., s. 151, 1) says (referring to Michaelis’s Com. on Heb_1:5): “The Jews were also accustomed to speak of the resurrection of the dead under the image of a new or second birth, to which they were led by the passage Isa_26:19, ‘the earth will again bring forth her dead.’” The critical student will not fail to see that such a usage leads us to believe that much more than a mere moral regeneration is meant in Christ’s conversation with Nicodemus, for appeal is made to Nicodemus’s knowledge of the Scriptures respecting the mode of Israel’s regeneration, what it included (comp. Art. on “The New Birth,” vol. 12, p. 116, Nathaniel). Reference to this birth is also made in Isa_54:1, and “the times of restitution” imply it. “Regeneration” (Mat_19:28) embraces it so clearly that it is used by writers as the equivalent of resurrection, as e.g. Eusebius’s His., b. 5, ch. 1., Lactantius, vol. 2, p. 181, in the letter of the churches of Vienna and Lyons.] Now, the reader is prepared for an additional reason for believing Ezekiel’s resurrection to be a literal one, viz., the clause, which above all others is supposed to teach a spiritual one, “And shall put My Spirit in you, and ye shall live.” This Spirit is put in these dead ones that are in their graves, and this corresponds with Rom_8:11. Therefore, this Spirit is called in I Corinthians 15, “a quickening Spirit” (Barnes, loci, “a vivifying Spirit, giving or imparting life”). This quickening or birth is performed by Christ (Joh_5:21; Joh_5:26, etc.), and Paul in II Corinthians 3, in his argument to show that the covenant is to be fulfilled by the Spirit giving life, says: “Now the Lord is that Spirit;” and when this is done we find announced in Php_3:20-21, “from whence (heaven) we look for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto His glorious body, according to the working whereby He is able to subdue all things unto Himself.” It is this resurrection Spirit that God promises in Ezekiel to give, that the dead may live, for they, too, are (Eph_1:13) “sealed with the Holy Spirit, of promise, which is the earnest of our inheritance, until the redemption of the purchased possession.” This again is confirmed by the use of “redeemed,” “ransomed,” etc., and the phraseology of Hos_13:14, “I will ransom them from the power of the grave; I will redeem them from death,” and of Paul, Rom_8:23, “the redemption of the body,” is amply sufficient to illustrate the meaning of the prophet. Thus to apply it to Isa_51:11, “the redeemed of the Lord shall return and come with singing unto Zion; and everlasting joy shall be upon their heads; they shall obtain gladness and joy; and sorrow and mourning shall flee away.” Preceding this we have this people consumed by the worm (Isa_51:8), and following it this is said to be done that the captive exile “should not die in the pit;” and when they return they enjoy what only is to be realized in the Millennial period. The parallel in Isa_35:10, “the ransomed of the Lord shall return,” etc., also teaches that this is performed when “God cometh with vengeance,” to “save you,” and forms thus what Paul calls “the day of Redemption” for fulfilling the covenant, for as Psa_111:9 forcibly puts it, “He sent redemption unto His people; He hath commanded His covenant forever.”335 [Note: 35 335. Job_19:25, owing to the division of critics respecting its reference to a resurrection is passed by;* so also Augustine’s rendering (b. 18, c. 33) of Zep_3:8, “Wait ye upon me, saith the Lord, in the day of my resurrection in the future,” etc.; Theodoret’s citing Psa_104:29-30, as a proof text in favor of a resurrection, but which is, perhaps, as Knapp observes, too obscure to be thus used; Dahler and others, referring to Jer_31:26 (comp. Jer_31:11) as expressive of the prophet’s allusion to his own death and resurrection; the Targum’s explanation of Isa_57:16 as expressive of a restoration, “I will restore the souls of the dead;” Clement in his first epistle (ch. 27) quoting Psa_3:6 and Job_19:25-26, as applying to a literal resurrection. The student will observe that as the Pre-Millennial resurrection is associated in the Divine Purpose with the introduction of the Kingdom, with this key before us many passages are seen to be framed in such a manner that a reference to the resurrection is implied or indirectly intimated, as e.g. in Mal_3:18; Psa_102:18-21; Psa_102:30; Jer_31:11. Thus e.g. “the adoption” being connected (Rom_8:23) with “the redemption of the body” implies a previous resurrection in order to be fitted for the chosen kingship with Christ (comp. Prop. 154). So that even in the preceding (Rom_8:21) phrase “the glorious liberty of the Sons of God,” there seems to be an allusion to deliverance from “the prison house”-the grave. Even Fuller (Strict. on Robinson, Lec. 3) says: “Probably the apostle alluded especially to the redemption of the bodies of believers at the resurrection,” thus making it accord with the usage of the prophets and of the Jews. Such declarations as are contained in Joh_8:36 are not merely to be confined to freedom from sin because of the previously announced fact that the heir, the Son (and with Him, of course, the co-heirs, i.e. those made free), abideth in the house (understanding the covenanted one) forever. We sometimes overlook the depth of meaning conveyed in such expressions, by neglecting to take that broad, comprehensive view of Redemption as given by the Spirit-forgetting that the freedom imparted by the Son embraces, as a multitude of passages show, also a deliverance from the bondage of the grave. Lange (Com. Mat_24:31) correctly instances this far-reaching implication, when e.g. he finds the same expressed in the phrase “And they shall gather together His elect,” saying “Here the resurrection of the elect (the first resurrection primarily) is declared;” Some writers (Fausset, Com. etc.) draw the same inference from Php_2:11, “things (i.e. beings, persons) under the earth.” New force and beauty is given by this doctrine to various passages. Thus, e.g. in Isa_40:6-8, the prophet, after delineating first briefly the realization of covenant promise, suddenly surveys the intermediate universality of death and impressively announces the sad fact that all must die. How then can the covenant be fulfilled? The answer, which implies a resurrection, is: “But the word of our God shall stand forever,” i.e. death, now triumphant, cannot defeat the Divine Purpose-these dead ones shall arise, etc. (comp. 1Pe_1:24-25; Psa_103:15, etc.). In Psa_9:13-14, David says that he shall be “lifted up from the gates of death, that I may shew forth all thy praise in the gates of the daughter of Zion: I will rejoice in thy salvation,” expressing his hope of a resurrection and future glory. It is interesting to notice that this psalm is entitled by the Vulgate, Sep., Ethiopic, over a hundred mss. and printed editions (and endorsed by Houbigant and many critics), “A Psalm of David for the end; concerning the secrets of the Son;” the Syriac, “A Psalm of David, concerning Christ’s receiving the throne and the Kingdom, and defeating His enemies;” Arabic, “concerning the mysteries of the Son, as to the glory of Christ,” etc., thus referring it, as the destruction of the enemies of God and the reign of Christ indicate, to the period of the Millennial age.
The student, carefully observing this feature in the Divine Purpose, will observe allusions to this resurrection in various other passages. Thus e.g. the Psalmist evidently expresses a well-grounded hope in a resurrection (Pre-Millennial, as the context indicates) in Psalms 90. After showing the universality of death, the shortness of life, the certainty of its approach, etc., the Psalmist suddenly changes the theme and encourages himself by the covenant hope expressed in the words: “Return, O God, how long? and let it repent thee concerning thy servants. Oh, satisfy us early with thy mercy; that we may rejoice and be glad all our days,” etc. Now in view of what preceded and the covenant promises, there can be no doubt whatever but that the Spirit implies a deliverance from the power of death, from the result of God’s wrath, through a resurrection. In Psalms 102 the lament is made that “I am withered like grass,” which is afterward explained as being” appointed to death, but deliverance is anticipated from this sad condition, and this is based (1) on the unchangeableness and mercy of God; (2) His faithfulness to hear prayer; (3) His fulfillment of covenant promises, evidenced, (a) in His appearing in glory to build up Zion, (b) in the time having arrived when His promises shall be realized, (c) in the gathering of His people and the submission of all Kingdoms. In Psalms 30 we have the positive assertion that the Psalmist (speaking for believers) was “brought up from the grave;” and he exults and rejoices in the greatness of his deliverance, attributing the same (marg. reading) “to the memorial” (comp. Prop. 49), which necessitates a resurrection in order that God may be faithful in His promises. To apply this simply to deliverance from grievous sickness is to weaken its sublime power, and to make it untruthful, seeing that David died, entered the pit, and became dust. But let it be studied in the light of a glorious Pre-Millennial resurrection, and it receives a beauty and force that nothing else can present-teaching us how then he will indeed be “girded with gladness,” praise God in His glory and realize in God’s favor that His “mountain” is made “to stand strong.” We think, therefore, that that class of commentators (Fausset, Gill, Alford, Berlinb. Bible, Bengel, Nast, Olshausen, Stier, Bonar, Ryle, Jones, Lillie, Lange, and others), who allow such references to a Pre-Millennial resurrection, are far more Scriptural and logical than the class that ignore or deny them. Even conservative writers allow such decisive applications, as e.g. Dr. Nägelsbach, Lange’s Com. Isaiah, who interprets Isa_26:5-19 to refer to a literal first resurrection, for (p. 289) he justly claims that with the aid of the Apocalypse we can distinguish between “a first and a second resurrection.”
* While we hold with the early Church that it refers to a resurrection, yet after the declarations of Barnes (Com. loci.), Knapp’s Theol., p. 528, M’Clintock and Strong’s Cyclop., Art. “Resurrection,” etc., who explain the passage to Job’s confident conviction that his distressed body would be restored to soundness, etc., it would be better, perhaps, to omit it, although much could be said in favor of a resurrection.]
Obs. 7. This doctrine of a literal Pre-Millennial resurrection we admit, is “Jewish.” This term of reproach (given in this sense by man) we cheerfully accept, for it is a distinguishing feature of our faith, seeing that we find it in the covenant given to Jews, in Jewish Prophets, in the teaching of a Jewish Savior and Jewish apostles, and in agreement with Jewish statements of doctrine; and that only such who are engrafted into the Abrahamic stock and become members of the Jewish commonwealth, shall participate in it. It belongs pre-eminently to the introduction of that Theocratic-Davidic Kingdom promised to the Jewish select nation. Even Rabbinical lore is fall of intimations respecting it. That, therefore, which forms such an objectionable feature to many, is only an additional reason for retaining it. (Comp. e.g. Prop. 68.)
Comp. Props. 69, 116, 123, 126, 127, etc., for the Jewish aspect, but especially Prop. 49 relating to the covenant. In the first part of this Proposition references have been made to the Jewish faith and instances given of expressed belief in a Pre-Millennial resurrection-one introductory to the Messianic Kingdom. In the Talmud (quoted by Lederer, in Israelite Indeed) the resurrection is found in Moses, for it is said: “Every one of Israel receives a portion of the world to come; for it is written: ‘Thy people also shall be all righteous; they shall inherit the land forever, the branch of my planting; the work of mine hands, that I may be glorified,’ Isa_60:21. But the following have no part in the world to come: those who say the resurrection from the dead cannot be proved from the book of the law (the Pentateuch).” In the German: “He who denies that the resurrection from the dead can be proved from the book of the law (though he may admit the fact that a resurrection shall take place), shall have no part in the resurrection, because God rewards and punishes measure for measure,” etc. (Comp. references under Prop. 49.) Milman (His. Jews, vol. 1, p. 232) refers to the Rabbins (Tract Sanhedrin, 2) as quoting such passages as Deu_31:16; Deu_1:8 in favor of a resurrection. In his His. Christ (vol. 1, p. 75, etc.) he speaks of this Jewish belief, and states a well-known fact, viz., that such a faith was more clearly and distinctively held after the return from Captivity. Buckle (Mis., vol. 3, p. 136) endeavors to take advantage of this fact as an indication of derivation from an acquaintance with “eastern philosophy”-but how it is derived, when all who hold it constantly appeal to the Jewish Scriptures, he (and others who press this matter) have not informed us. Let us only add: One reason, apparently, why the resurrection is more prominently given by Daniel, Ezekiel, and others is the following: The resurrection is allied with a restored Theocracy; now as long as the Theocratic Kingdom in the Davidic line existed, that prominency was not given to it which, as a great source of comfort and encouragement, appertained to it when the Kingdom was overthrown and faith and hope were directed to its restoration. Augustine (City of God, *) finds the first intimation of a resurrection even in the name of “Seth” signifying “resurrection,” and if one of our opponents can find it so remotely, no one can censure us for our findings. For the Jewish faith in a resurrection of the dead, compare Prayer 2, in the Nineteen Prayers (Shemoneh Esreh), Horne’s Introd., vol. 2, p. 107. Also articles on the resurrection in Bible Cyclopedias, and in Commentaries, especially comments on Mat_22:23; Mat_22:31, in Lange, Meyer, etc.
Obs. 8. We see what estimate to place on Reuss’s assertion (His. Ch. Theol., p. 57): “It is a fact admitted in our day by all unprejudiced exegetes, and which should never have been denied, that the doctrine (of the resurrection) was never taught by the prophets previous to the exile, especially in any close association with the idea of a future reward.” This is abundantly refuted by what we have produced from the Pentateuch, the historical books, the Psalms, Isaiah and Ezekiel. Even if this language is to be spiritualized (which these men do, and, therefore, cannot find a resurrection), critics fully admit that the language is based on, or the figure is derived from, a doctrine of the resurrection, which must then have been well known. But over against Reuss, Jesus Himself told the Sadducees that it was taught even by Moses; so Peter, in proving the resurrection of Jesus, affirms the same respecting David; and so Paul, Heb_11:35, concerning the ancients generally. It was taught both directly or inferentially, but, of course, if the most direct passages are to receive Origenistic interpretation and manipulation, then it cannot be found-the doctrine is prejudged. The Jews themselves appealed to passages in the writings before the exile for their belief, and found it even, where all Scripture places it as necessarily implied, viz., in the Covenant itself. Even Stanley (His. of Jew. Ch., 2 Ser., p. 170) speaks of “the defects” of the Psalms in this particular, and adds: “Hardly in the silence of the Pentateuch or the gloomy despair of Ecclesiastes, is the faintness of immortality more chilling than in the 30th, 49th, and 88th Psalms.” The “defect” in this case is in the interpreter, and not in the Psalms. For what can be more significant and cheering than the plain statement in the 30th that he will praise God, “for Thou hast lifted me up and hast not made my foes (death and the grave as he afterward explains) to rejoice over me”-“O Lord, Thou hast brought up my soul from the grave; Thou hast kept me alive, that I should not go down to the pit,” i.e., remain there as the wicked. And this comes to pass owing (marg. reading) “to the memorial,” which we have shown (Prop. 49) pledges God to a resurrection to insure the fulfillment of the Covenant promises. This, too, takes place in “the morning,” see Prop. 139. Then again he refers to death, to his happy deliverance from it, to the establishment of his “mountain” or Kingdom, to the fact that he would “not be silent” as the wicked then will be. Whether others can see it or not, the Psalm is radiant with hope of blessed immortality. Psalm 88 is, as has already been shown, jubilant with the same hope, while Psalm 40, not so distinctive, gives, as parallel passages will indicate, evidences of the same.
The efforts made by Amner (On Dan.) to make out-which many now follow-the passages referring to a resurrection to denote mere temporal deliverance, have been fully exposed by others, as e.g. Brit. Critic, O. Ser. vol. 13. Fiske (The Unseen World, p. 105) very confidently asserts that the doctrine of a resurrection was devised after the Babylonish Captivity to meet doctrinal contingencies, and that it was not original with the Jews but was “borrowed from the Zaratheustian theology of Persia.” Clarke (Ten Religions) and many others repeat this, as if repetition was proof. It is reasonable to expect such statements from unbelievers, but when they come from professed believers they are unreasonable. Thus e.g. Beecher (Ser. “The Future Life,” in Ch. Union, Sept. 5th, 1877), speaking of the hope of a future life as expressed in the Old Testament, says: “It (the Old Testament) is dumb, and utters not a word on the subject. There is no teaching of a future existence in the Old Testament, not from the beginning to the end.” He qualifies this afterward by saying that there might have been “glimpses,” “speculations,” or “hopes.” Again: in the Art. “Resurrection,” in M’Clintock and Strong’s Cyclop., it is said: “It is admitted that there are no traces of such a belief in the earlier Hebrew Scriptures. It is not to be found in the Pentateuch, in the historical books, or in the Psalms; for Psa_99:15 does not relate to the subject; neither does Psa_104:29-30 although so cited by Theodoret and others.” Now over against all these is the simple but positive statement of Jesus, and Paul, and Peter, whose declarations are amply supported by the facts adduced.
Obs. 9. From what preceded, it is evident that the unbelief of those is inexcusable, who, in a measure, removed from gross Rationalism, still, like Lücke in his Introd. to the Apoc., and Bleek in his works on Daniel, make these prophecies a kind of poetical fiction; or, like Reuss in his Analysis of the Apoc., speak of them as a resume of exploded Jewish expectations. So rooted are they in the Divine Plan, so entirely embedded in the Plan of the Redemption, that to deny their validity is to sacrifice Divine Unity, to deal a blow at one of the most vital parts of Salvation. We see, too, in the union between Paul, the other writers, and the Apocalypse, how fanciful is the opinion of the Bauer school that they are in opposition to each other, when, in fact, they mutually sustain each other in “the one hope.”
Many theologians, simply on account of their spiritualizing system, can see no faith of a resurrection in the Patriarchs and others (although expressed, e.g. in the case of Isaac, in faith in covenant promises, in hope when dying, etc.), and such, of course, can find no Pre-Millennial resurrection, or if, peradventure, found and admitted, dismiss it as Jewish superstition. When not immediately concerned in opposing our views, we often find the most remarkable concessions, as e.g. Fairbairn (Typology, vol. 1, p. 290) positively asserts that the Antediluvians looked for no other domain than this earth, renewed, etc., for an inheritance, and this to be obtained “through a resurrection of the dead,” which hope was afterward confirmed. When opposing us, then the plainest references to the resurrection are all figurative, as e.g. Brown (Christ’s Second Com., p. 251) makes Eze_37:12-14; Hos_6:2 – Isa_26:19; Isa_26:14, figurative in order to show that Rev_20:4-6 is the same. We may well ask then, if such declarations are figurative, where is the resurrection taught? We need not wonder that many writers (e.g. Fowle in “Science and Immortality,” Pop. Science Monthly, May, 1872) can find not “a shadow of a trace” in the books of Moses concerning a future life, and base it upon the fact that Moses lets his aspirations concerning the future relate, not to the third heaven, but to this earth. Precisely so, for then Moses in his reference to this earth as the future glorious inheritance is in full accord with the truth (comp. Props. 49, 131, 137, 141, 144, 146, 151, 154, etc.). His teaching regarding that future life we have already fully expressed.
Obs. 10. This Pre-Millennial restoration aids in solving a difficulty (unnecessarily such) felt by theologians, viz., that the first books of the Bible are only confined to temporal, earthly blessings, or rather, as it should be worded to be correct, blessings here on earth. The question deduced is: Why is the hope constantly held up to the Jews of living in their promised land and none presented of rewards in the third heaven? The substance of the answer given by those who reject the key afforded by the Covenant and this resurrection, is this: that the Jews were not then prepared for other promises, and that the real hope and destiny was to be gradually revealed as they could bear it, etc. Learned dissertations are tilled with just such nonsense, or “worldly wisdom.” Such reasoning places both man and God in a false position. The former, as if he were then so intellectually and morally weak as to be disqualified to appreciate his own destination, and now, even in the case of heathen or all men, so strong as to be able to bear such knowledge; the latter, as if He would conceal the true destination of those who trusted in Him and excite their hopes, etc., by either false or temporary motives. No! never does God thus deal with man. The true reason, and the one underlying the Covenant and all these promises, is, that the land, the earth, is truly-as always affirmed-their inheritance, and that God will raise them up out of their graves and fulfil the promises given by bringing them into the land; and, moreover, God never changes from this divine purpose, for the promise (Prop. 142) exists today, as it ever did, “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit” (not the third heaven but), “the earth.” The language of Moses and others is the best that could be used, for it is the truth-the truth of God which in His own time He will see is realized. We are not to come to God’s Word and gauge it by a monkish third heaven theory, which makes the third heaven the saint’s inheritance instead of the one that God uniformly through every prophet has promised, and then by it judge of the propriety and truthfulness of the Divine utterances. Would that Abrahamic faith were more characteristic of believers! (comp. Props. 144, 151, etc.).