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the worship of the age to come: “For in Mine holy mountain, in the mountain of the height of Israel, saith the Lord God, there shall all the House of Israel serve Me, there will I accept them, and there will I require your offerings, and the firstfruit of your oblation, with all your holy things ” (see also Isa. ii. 2, 3; Micah iv. 1, 2).

But in reference to the great festival of the Millennial Church, special prominence is given to it for some

Reference is made to this great festival in Hosea. xii. 9, and in Zech. xiv. 16, 18.

But what will be the special spiritual teaching through this festival it is difficult to conjecture, except it be to remind His people of their spiritual character, even in that age. For if the tent is used in this Millennial observance, as in the old Hebrew observance, the tent used, with the branches, would truly remind them that they would be but strangers and foreigners in the earth; and that, till the new heaven and the new earth are formed, even the Millennial believer would be but a pilgrim in the earth. And this fact would have a healthy and sanctifying inflaence over the heart and life. Possibly this may be the meaning; if not, we rather leave it for prayerful consideration.

Then in Isaiah we have a further allusion to the worship of the age to come, and learn that the Church of the Millennial age will have its New Moon festivals and its Sabbath observance.

As to the New Moon festival, we have nothing to say, except, perhaps, that it is intended to keep up an

ordinance which had ever been “a statate in Israel,” and a monthly reminder of their indebtedness to, and dependence upon, God.

But in reference to the Sabbath, a somewhat curious question is raised, Will this Millennial Sabbath be the seventh day rest or the first day rest ?—a memorial of creation, or of redemption? With no data to decide the question, we certainly lean to the latter; for if the Church of the Millennium is to be a spiritual Church, and to stand with Christ in resurrection, and receive the fruits of that resurrection in a prolonged Pentecost, then it would seem every way reasonable that we should conclude that this Millennial Sabbath would be the Lord's-day, the eighth, the resurrection day.

And it is worthy of note that the demand is both imperative and universal: “And it shall come to pass that from one new moon to another, and from one Sabbath to another shall all flesh come to worship before Me, saith the Lord” (Isa. lxvi. 23).

Now here is an apparent difficulty, and yet it is only apparent. For it is hardly credible that the Lord could mean that all fleshi.e., that all the habitable globe-should come and worship in the great central temple. But the meaning evidently is, as in Mal. i. 11, that all flesh should appear before the Lord in some place where worship is conducted. Thus the Sabbath will be kept with consecrated reverence, “from the rising of the sun to the going down of the same.” • Let the people praise Thee, O God; let all the people praise Thee” (Psa. lxvii. 3). “Then God shall bless us, and all the ends of the earth shall fear Him" (7).

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Thus, too, we may infer from this wide and universal Sabbath-keeping, the moral, social, and spiritual condition of the age to come. For the motive and spirit in which this sacred ordinance will be observed will be of a much higher tone, Godward, than what obtains in this time. Now, a great deal of our Sabbath-keeping is mere fashion, routine, and decorum, nothing more; then it will be far different. A spirit of true and heaven-born devotion will be the rule and habit of the people. And as the Sabbaths and new moons return, they will say to each other, “Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, and to the house of the God of Jacob," &c. (Micah iv. 2; Isa. ii. 3). “All nations shall flow unto it,” saying, “O, house of Jacob, come ye, let us walk in the light of the Lord” (ver. 5). Cantemus Domino ; gloriose enim magnificatus est" (Exod. xv. 21).

“For the Dayspring of the nations,

Of the kingdoms wide and far;
For the rising over Europe

Of the bright and morning star;
For the blaze of heav'nly sunshine,

For the hues of glorious day,
Coming up behind the shadows
Of the ages long and grey;

Blessed be God, our God alone,
Our God, the Everlasting One,

Who spake the Word, and it was done!
For the broken chains of Europe,

For her prison doors unbarred,
For the freedom of her peoples,

By the freedom-giving Word;
For the battle bravely foughten

With the powers of hellish night,

For the scattering of the darkness,
For the victory of light;

Blessed be God, our God alone,
Our God, the Everlasting One,

Who spake the Word, and it was done! For the watchword of the prophets,

That “the just shall live by faith ;" For the Church's ancient symbol

Of the life that comes thro' death;
For the standard of Apostles,

Raised aloft and full unfurled,
Glad deliverance proclaiming
To a crushed and trampled world ;

Blessed be God, our God, alone,
Oar God, the Everlasting One,

Who spake the Word, and it was donel For the everlasting Gospel,

Which in splendour has gone forth,
Like a torch upon the mountains

Of a re-illumined earth;
For the temple flung wide open,

1

At whose gates the goodly train Of the nations had been knocking, *But in vain, so long, in vain;

Blessed be God, our God, alone,
Our God, the Everlasting One,
Who spake the Word, and it was done!”

1 The italics are mine.-W. F,

97

CHAPTER IV.

THE UNITY AND CATHOLICITY OF THE CHURCH OF THE

AGE TO COME.

ITS

TS unity is very remarkable, and stands out

with painful contrast, rebuking the sad and shameful divisions of the Church of this age. For while there is hardly any ground for division, even now, if the Bible were always made the sole and exclusive standard of appeal; yet nothing is more deplorable than to witness the schisms and divisions of those who all profess to be the children of the same divine Father, the disciples of the same loving Lord and Saviour, and members of the same Body of which He is the glorious Head. Sad indeed is the spectacle; verily, “ we are a spectacle to the world, to angels, and to men.” Our beauty is disfigured before the world, and our disunion is our weakness, spiritual as well as numerical.

But in the age to come there will be anbroken nnity, "one Lord, one faith,” “one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all ” (then as now), inspired by that “one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as He will ” (1 Cor. xii. 11). And the words of David in Psa. cxxxiii. 1 will be beautifully true: “Behold how

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