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ordained directly under the hands of the mother church. It is a matter of record and undisputed.
An amazing spectacle this! For centuries the reformation has been raking Rome from stem to stern, proclaiming her everything that is vile, denouncing her as the Devil himself; and now forced to cringingly confess that whatever of ordination authority they hold, it comes from the object of their wrath. A wonder the child ever left the parent! No marvel that so many of the Protestant ministry have been returning to Rome in recent years.
What about the legality of this authority? Does the title emanate from the Crown? Never!“The Roman hierarchy, then, is not a true church. It is not merely a corrupt, but a false church. No spiritual gifts or virtue can descend from it.”-Rev. John Rogers' Lectures, vol. 3, p. 169.
In view of the awful apostasy the true title of authority became lost, Rome's claim for a succession to the contrary notwithstanding.
Thus upon search, the gilded indentures and deeds held by the reformation are found to be cloudy and unreliable. Traced to Rome, they go to the pope, thence back step by step through a long channel of unprincipled pontiffs until they reach the fatal "570" when, as we have learned, “the pope took the opportunity and began to hold up his head."
But where is the entry recording the holding of authority by the pope? Not in evidence! The record of the registered word does not disclose it, and the revelations of God have not declared it.
It may be that Methodism consoles herself with the thought that John Wesley never received his ordination from Rome. True, directly, he did not; but indirectly he did.
Ordained, as he admits, by the Archbishop of Canterbury, of the Church of England, his spiritual pedigree is easily traced. Through the Church of England it goes back to Cranmer and Henry VIII, thence into Rome.
It makes little difference whether one drinks at the distillery or buys over the bar; it's all the same whisky and comes from the same still.
THE MANNER OF EFFECTING THE RESTORATION.
The first thing to be impressed is the fact that it is God who will establish the restoration. It is not a matter that will be left to the ingenuity of earth. The wisdom of man sorely exhibited in a thousand conflicting creeds and churches is absolutely unfitted for the task.
Therefore, behold, I will proceed to do a marvelous work among this people, even a marvelous work and a wonder; for the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be hid.—Isaiah 29: 14.
The stone shall be cut out of the mountain "without hands." Human hands can not quarry it and granolithic compounds will not do. "And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom.” (Daniel 2: 34, 44.) We require in fact a clear deed and title of authority direct from the Crown, and God alone can give it.
Now as to the course to be pursued in order to effect the restoration, two plans present themselves, one of which may be selected. One is, that the King may come in person and accomplish it. This he did nineteen hundred years ago. The other is, that he may send an ambassador, an angel, one clothed with wisdom and authority. The work thus accomplished would be the same as though the King himself performed it. Either plan will do and it is immaterial to us which one he selects. It is left for him to say.
And he has said it: And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come.-Revelation 14: 6, 7.
The reader will make no mistake. This surely refers to a latter day work. It is the restoration of the gospel in the hour of God's judgment,” the very age alluded to in the other prophecies, viz, the "eleventh hour," "the last days," the "supper time," "the end of the world" and "the latter days."
It is evident that this does not refer to the first publication of the gospel by the apostles; because it immediately precedes the execution of judgment upon the kingdom of the beast. But it is a publication of the gospel preparatory to the fall of mystic Babylon. It must, therefore, signify some remarkable spreading of the knowledge of the gospel at the latter end of the reign of antichrist. And it is called “the everlasting gospel” to signify that it is a glorious revelation from the Eternal God.-Langdon's Observations, etc., pp. 192, 193.
Such a restoration was declared to be needed and desired in the days preceding 1830.
And this may perhaps be the event described in Revelation 14:6, of an angel flying in the midst of heaven having the everlasting gospel to preach to them that dwell on the earth. Some such sensible renewed divine interposition seems indeed to be wanting to revive real religious impressions in the world where in general religion is degenerated into a mere unimpressive name and form.—Rev. James Brown, on Revelation, p. 95, published 1810.
The context clearly reveals the situation of the prophecy and its fulfillment. Going back to the twelfth chapter we are informed of the woman's departure into the wilderness, where she remains for twelve hundred and sixty years. Act No. 1.
In the thirteenth chapter the story continues, taking up the terrible condition of the world under the papal predominance and persecutions. Act No. 2. Indeed the matter is so plain that a way-. faring man though a fool need not err therein. The very name of the latter power is given:
Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is six hundred three score and six .
Now it is a matter of notoriety that the pope assumes to be the "vice-gerent of the Son of God.” He is so acclaimed by the people of that faith. This assumption, reduced to the language of the Roman Catholic Church, reads, vicarius filii dei, said to have been inscribed on the pope's triple tiara at one time. Taking the letters out of this title which the Latins used as numerals, and giving them their numerical value, we have just 666. Thus we have v, 5; i, 1; c, 100; (a and r are not used as numerals) ; i, 1; u (formerly the same
as v),5; (s and f not used as numerals); i, 1;1, 50; i, 1;i, 1; 0, 500; (e not used as a numeral) ; i, 1. Adding these numbers together we have 666. Thus we are enabled to trace the trend of events.
The fourteenth chapter opens and immediately stages the third act. It is the last in the drama of life and will end in a triumphant climax. Brighter visions burst upon the view, and behold, a new character is introduced. It is an angel of the Lord. His is an important part, a glorious part:
And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people.—Revelation 14:6. Assuredly a restoration of the gospel by angel hands.
ANGEL MINISTRATION. The blessing of angel visitation, so far as the Bible is concerned, is a very ordinary incident. Angels have ministered to humanity in all the walks of life. High and low, rich and poor have received of their gracious presence. They not only concerned themselves with exalted achievements, but condescended to advise in the humbler details of life.
We read of them appearing unto Abraham on the plains of Mamre, announcing approaching posterity; and later, interfering in behalf of his son's life when laid upon the altar. Through their kindly counsel Hagar was encouraged, and when ready to perish with thirst was directed to a well of water. Duly advised of impending doom, Lot was enabled to escape the fiery punishment of Sodom and Gomorrah.
An angel directed Joshua in the siege of Jericho, and again was found rebuking Balaam for brutality to his beast. Elijah, wandering as a fugitive, sought salvation in the comfortless 'hospitality of a wilderness, and but for the timely intervention of an angel would have perished.
The New Testament knows no cessation of their kindly watchcare. Apprising Mary of approaching honor, they later announce the birth of our Savior to the shepherds on Bethlehem's plains; and warning Joseph, the child's life was preserved from the murderous hand of Herod. Encouraging the apostles who were sorrowing for an ascending Christ, they were later seen directing Philip in his work, even mapping out the very road he should take. Cornelius they counseled, and stood by Paul in the storm.
Popular teaching takes the position that a reception of angels is entirely a social function of the past; that it has gone out of style never to be revived. They would have us believe that their olden interest and love for humanity has waned; or else that some grievous epidemic has befallen them, making it impossible to continue communication.
Upon what grounds they base such assumptions we are not advised. Not upon the Scriptures at any rate. To the contrary, the Bible proclaims positively that angels will continue their uncompleted work even to the end of time, "When the Son of Man shall come in his glory and all the holy angels with him.”
We are unaware of any decree preventing their transportation to earth, and the route by which they traveled eighteen hundred years ago is still in existence; overgrown, it may be, by the barriers of unbelief; but the power is in us to remove the barriers.
If cause has arisen preventing the visitation of angels, it has emanated from man, who by his unbelief has refused to extend them invitation, choosing rather to excuse his discourtesy by inventing such wicked falsehoods as, “There are no angels nowadays, and whoever receives them, it is all of the Devil."
Shame on a neglectful Christianity? which by its evil heart of unbelief has deprived itself of the richest treasures of divine grace!
The facts are that a hireling ministry have refused all along to support any doctrine that might bring man in touch with his Maker. They have feared the results, knowing full well that it would endanger their finely fixed frauds. It is even as the prophet said, "The heads thereof judge for reward and the priests thereof teach for hire"; therefore night shall be unto you, that ye shall not have a vision; . . . Yea, they shall all cover their lips: for there is no answer of God.”—Micah 3: 6-11.
Away with the hireling who lives to fleece, rather than feed, leeching the vitals of honest ignorance. Down with these spiritless, soulless trusts, thrust upon an unsuspecting public, whose leading characteristics, displayed in choir and congregation, are greed, gayety, and graft.
But, “Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.”—Hebrews 13: 2. Wholesome, universal counsel this, and never intended to be narrowed down to the limited confines of apostolic days.
Marvelous missions were assigned the angels, for future times, as abundantly announced in the book of Revelation. Some are messengers of peace, while others are heralds of fearful judgments to be rolled forth unto the ends of the earth. And our Lord foreseeing the final calamities, will make provision for the escape of the righteous. For them he will have a place prepared, and to it the angels “shall gather together his elect.” (Matthew 24:31.)
It is not in harmony with the policy of the Lord that the voice of visions should for ever cease, lest the plague of apostasy continue unchecked and the great work of the restoration be for ever frustrated; "Where there is no vision the people perish.”—Proverbs 29:18.
This being the common channel of communication in the past, we may not expect it to be ignored in the future; nor will it be, especially in the inauguration of the latter day glory:
And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams.Acts 2: 17.
Mark well the time, “the last days," the very time of the restoration and this prediction becomes doubly impressive, when in turning to the prophecy of Joel 2:28, we find it again affirmed, almost word for word. An inviolable decree! A specie of golden coin
issued by the bank of heaven and taken at par by all honest exchanges.
"Young men shall see visions," says the prophecy. Evidently Zechariah had a glimpse of this very occurrence when overhearing two angels converse:
And, behold, the angel that talked with me went forth, and another angel went out to meet him, and said unto him, Run, speak to this young man, saying, Jerusalem shall be inhabited as towns without walls for the multitude of men and cattle therein.—Zechariah 2: 3, 4.
Who this young man will be, we are not informed. At any rate not one of the Bible prophets; for none of them, either old or young, ever claimed to have received this messenger. It remained for one of a later period. The context discloses that; for, associated with this angel visitation, the deliverance of Zion (the church) from the daughter of Babylon; the choosing of “Jerusalem again”; the coming of Jesus Christ to dwell among his people; and the recovery of Israel from "the land of the north," are engagingly set forth. Latter day events surely! And the entire chapter is thus taken up.
How, and in what particular manner, this young man will receive this information, we are not advised. Possibly by word of mouth; or it may be through the deliverance of some sacred record; and yet it is quite probable that both means will be employed.
At all events the reception of visions and revelations, written upon plates of imperishable material, is neither impossible nor improbable. The following will signify:
And the Lord answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it. For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.—Habakkuk 2: 2, 3.
A very condensed prophecy surely, but clearly setting forth the following facts:
1. A vision or revelation will come.
5. It may "tarry” long, but still "it will surely come"; nothing can prevent it.
6. It will be a true record. “It will not lie."
Associating with this the prominent points set forth in the preceding prophecies, we have an array of evidence, locked and interlocked by fact and force, at once unyielding and invulnerable, carrying with it irresistible conclusions:
First, that the everlasting gospel shall be restored.
Second, that it shall be accomplished in the hour of God's judgment.
Third, that in the latter days God's Spirit will be poured out.