1 And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book.
The name Mi-cha-el signifies who-like-to-Ail, or the Eternal Power; and is applicable to any person, or community of persons, in whom Eternal Power is embodied, and manifested...
The anointed Jesus (not the dead body lying in the sepulchre of the Arimathean Joseph) is eternal power manifested in flesh; and, therefore, AIL, or in Saxon "God." Now Mi-cha-lo? -- WHO-LIKE-TO-HIM among the sons of the mighty? (Psalm 89:6). Therefore, because there is none to compare with him the "child born" and the "son given" to Judah, is styled in Isaiah 9:6, AIL givbor, "the Mighty Power."
Hence, when he appears in power and great glory to put a hook into the jaws of the leviathan, to slay the dragon in the sea, and to raise the dead, it will be said of him, Mi-cha-el? Who like to God? to "Yahweh the Man of War"? Who will contend with him? (Isaiah 50:8), with Jesus, the Eternal's king of the Jews?
Jesus, then, the Son of David and Son of the Eternal Power by David's daughter, is Michael the great Prince of Israel, who comes to redeem his kinsmen and their inheritance, and to break in pieces their oppressors. But as he is not only a single individual, but also one containing many -- a manifold man -- whose symbolical number is 144,000; the many "in him" are constituents of "Michael the Great Prince," who delivers Israel in the time of trouble which transcends all the calamitous periods of human history since the Flood.
Phanerosis - Michael the Great Prince
The war of Ail-Shaddai, which begins subsequently to the resurrection of the holy ones, does not intermit, till all the Kingdoms of imperial Babylon become theirs. As the conquerors of the powers that overcame them in the days of their flesh, the praises of emancipated nations sound the fame of Israel to the ends of the earth. As a nation they become mighty and glorious above all. But if the nation be so great, what may not be expected of those who shall have led the tribes of Jacob to victory and renown, and under the generalship of their commander-in-chief shall have brought the blessings of Abraham upon the world?
Exposition of Daniel.
This "time of trouble" is contemporary with the resurrection of a portion of the dead. It is the epoch of Israel's deliverance, both of the Ishmael, and Isaac, seeds; and of the casting down of the thrones of the beast (Dan. 7:9). The convulsion which effects their overthrow is described by the apostle as "a great earthquake, such as was not since men were upon the earth, so mighty an earthquake, and so great" (Rev. 16:18).
Ascertain the calamities of former ages, and however terrible they may appear, this will exceed them all. The Flood, Sodom, Egypt, Jerusalem, the fall of the Roman Empire, were all judgments which chill the heart, and make the blood run cold to contemplate; but times have now come over the world which will have been hitherto unsurpassed. The wrath of the sixth and seventh vials which remains, is about to overwhelm the nations with "torment and sorrow," for the cup of their iniquity is full.
Elpis Israel 3.3.
The furnace in which Israel will become molten brass is "the wilderness of the peoples," where Yahweh saith He will plead with them face to face; rule over them with fury poured out, and purge out from among them the rebellious, whom He will not permit to enter into the Holy Land to live there in His sight under the government of His King--the Christ (Ezek. 20:33-44).
When thus purged, the Jewish nation will be brass and silver well refined (Mal. 3:2-3). The rebellious dross will be cleaned out, and Anti-Mosaic-Judaism, by which they are now caused to wander out of the way, will have been destroyed from the earth. The refining furnace is the "time of Jacob's trouble," out of which he is to be delivered (Jer. 30:7); and though they are now "prostrate among the cattle pens," they will be "the wings of the Dove covered with silver and her feathers with the brightness of fine gold" (Ps. 68:13).
But the Gentiles are to become molten brass as well as Israel. Their brass, therefore, is also to be gathered into the furnace, that it may be melted and refined in the fire of Yahweh's wrath.
The place of the furnace is also "the wilderness of the people," that wilderness inhabited by the peoples, multitudes, nations, and tongues -- the "many waters upon which the Great Harlot sitteth" -- that John of Patmos refers to in Rev. 17:1,15 -- Portugal, Spain, France, Germany, Italy, Greece, Egypt; and, in short, all being the Meditteranean and Euphratean countries, being the territories of the four beasts of Daniel, constitute the furnace in which the Nebuchadnezzar gold, silver and brass, and iron, and clay--are made to glow with torrid heat of seven-fold intensity; and in which the four men of God -- the Cherubim -- walk to and fro, without hurt, "the fire having no power upon their bodies": as symbolized by Nebuchadnezzar's furnace, and by John's mystical Son of Man, in Rev. 1:15: Dan. 3:19-27.
The melting and refining the Gentile brass in this Babylonian furnace, incandescent with the wrath of Deity, is Daniel's "time of trouble, such as never was, since there was a nation to that same time" (12:1). It is "the day that shall burn as an oven" (or furnace) which shall consume the proud and all that do wickedness, with their anti-Christian Gentilism, by which the peoples are deceived; but which shall have no power for evil against the people represented by Shadrach, Meshach, Abednego, and the one like the Son of God; they shall come forth unharmed, unsinged, unchanged and inodorous of the fire.
For these are the daughters of Zion, to whom the Spirit saith: "Arise and thresh: for I will make thine horn iron, and I will make thy hoofs brass; and thou shalt beat in pieces many peoples; and I will consecrate their spoil to Yahweh, and their wealth to the Adon of the whole earth" (Mic. 4:13). So that while Israel is passing through the furnace under the conduct of the saints, and are themselves being purged from dross, they are also made use of by their commanders as a torch of fire among the sheaves, or a lion among flocks of goats (Mic. 5:8; Zech 12:6), to destroy the power and kingdoms of the world, after the allegorical example of their transit out of Egypt into the land of their inheritance; for though passing under the rod themselves, they became also a rod of iron in the hand of Yahweh for the destruction of the nations, whose iniquity was full.
Phanerosis - And At His Feet As The Aspect Of Glowing Brass
To be acceptable we have to be found written in the book. What is this book that God's people are written in? It is the Book of Life where only the names of those who will receive everlasting life are recorded. On this point we note it is possible to begin well, having our names written therein, and then have them blotted out, to lose the race, because of unfaithfulness. Christ says (Rev. 3:5)-
"He that overcometh, ... I will not blot out his name out of the Book of Life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before His angels."
This is what should be the utmost in our minds and hearts today. We should be working to keep our names in this Ledger that they be not blotted out, but rather will be confessed before Yahweh, as being among the few who have overcome. *
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.
The doctrine of the judgment was the subject of apostolic proclamation, to both Jew and Gentile, in and out of Christ (Acts x. 42; Rom. ii. 16), and is included among the first principles of the truth (Heb. vi. 2).
Like all the first principles it is set forth with great plainness in the Bible. Not only was the doctrine emphasised by Christ and the apostles, but it was believed and upheld all along the ages-by the patriarchs (Jude 14-15; Job xxxiv: 11; xxi: 30)-by David and Solomon (Ps. lxii. 12; Prov. xxiv: 12; Ecc iii: 17: xi: 9: xii: 13-14)-by the prophets (Is. iii: 10-11; Jer xvii:10; xxxii: 19; Mal. iii: 17-18).
This is also shown by Paul's reference to the Jews' belief-
"They themselves also allow that there shall be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and unjust" (Acts xxiv: 4).
The judgment is to take place at a definite time-"the last day"-the day of Christ's appearing (1 Cor. iv: 5; Rom. ii: 6, 16; Dan. xii: 1; Jno. v: 28-29; Rev. xi: 18; 1 Jno. ii: 28); and is to be carried out on the basis of the gospel known and willingly obeyed, or known and wilfully disobeyed (Jno. xii: 48).
It was the vivid recognition of these truths that made Paul so earnest, both in pleading with the alien, and in addressing the brethren on the subject (2 Cor. v: 10; Rom. xiv: 10; 2 Tim. iv: 8).
Oh! what a sad thing that brethren should be at variance over this clearly stated truth. And how much sadder to see the wresting of Scripture to support the wrong side.
Bro AT Jannaway
The Christadelphian, Jul 1899
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.
3 And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever.
The wise, that is the hearers AND doers of the word shall shine: compare Matt 13:43 -
'Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Who hath ears to hear, let him hear'.
None can become righteous who are not circumspect of mind, intelligent, or carefully considerate of the divine testimony, which is the meaning of maskilim, translated wise.
Exposition of Daniel.
4 But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased.
There is a reason why the words may be understood at the time of the end. In "the words" are prophetically delineated historical events extending over centuries, and at the time of the end, we have the facts of accomplished history as the infallible interpreters of these words.
Who are these wise who shall shine? It is certainly not those involved with the world's wisdom, but rather those who have become fools for Christ's sake and the Gospel's. These alone are the wise, for their lives are dedicated to true wisdom. They are (Prov. 8:34)-
"Watching daily at wisdom s gates, waiting at the posts of her doors, "that finding her they may find life and obtain favour.
The wisdom of getting wise through daily Bible reading and study cannot be emphasized strongly enough because life depends on it. Away from it, spiritual decay sets in. We begin drifting into satisfaction with this life, content with the formality of the Truth. There is a grave danger of professing to be Christ's while being in league with the world, the enemy of God.
Thus we must be more aware of separateness and holiness, and spend our lives learning God's wisdom, teaching it to others by word and by example. Through this means the wise are described as turning many to righteousness. After the pattern of Christ, they are concerned and active in the work of ministering and helping others, especially their fellow-heirs. They hold out the light of Truth brightly now, and so will be numbered among the class who will shine as stars in the new heavens, teaching and ruling in immortal splendor over a peaceful earth. *
THE WISE SHALL UNDERSTAND:" WHO ARE THEY?
By Dr. Thomas.
THE revealing angel said to Daniel not only that "the wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament," but that "the wise shall understand." But who are "the wise?"
This is a very important question. It is truly a vital question to every one that reads it. As the inquiry is suggested by Daniel, would it not be proper to let him suggest the answer? This I think is expedient. He was told the reason why he could not obtain the information sought: that it was "because the words were closed up and sealed till the time of the end;" which was tantamount to saying that when the time of the end should arrive, the time-words would be no longer closed-up and sealed; that is, they would speak or become intelligible: for in that time many should run to and fro, and knowledge should be increased.
A time has been present with us for several years, during which many have been running to and fro, to the increase of knowledge considerably. As a result of this, Daniel was informed, in effect, that his question would then be solved, and besides was given to know who should not and who should understand it.
"None of the reshaim, unjust, shall understand; but the wise shall understand."
The word reshaim signifies unjustified persons as opposed to tzaddikim, justified persons, who are "the wise;" which accords with the words of Jesus, who substitutes the phrase tzaddikim or righteous, for "the wise," in the text, "Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the Kingdom of their Father." None can become righteous who are not circumspect of mind, intelligent, or carefully considerate of the divine testimony, which is the meaning of maskilim, translated wise.
But if the wise are to be determined by those who can answer the question, "When the end of the time, times, and a half?" where shall they be found? Years ago a multitude of reshaim claimed to be maskilim upon the ground that they could answer the question! They published far and wide that the end would be in 1843? But time has proved that they were reshaim, and not maskilim; for "none of them understood."
Wisdom, however, hath her beginning in the fear of the Lord, which is precisely the alpha with which they omitted to commence their studies. "Children, I will teach you the fear of Yahweh." It is a something to be taught, studied, and acquired. The "The fear of Yahweh is the instruction of wisdom;" that way of acceptance with the Deity which the Spirit of wisdom teaches in the Holy Scriptures. In the days of his flesh, Jesus was "of quick understanding in the fear of Yahweh;" and so are they who besides him are "taught of God;" and it is only they who are thus taught that are recognised as righteous; for of these it is written, "they shall be the taught of God" (Jno. vi. 44-45).
But how did the Deity teach men His fear? In the days of the apostles He taught them through the Scriptures of the prophets, and the oral instructions of the apostles; but since their time, by the Scriptures of the prophets and apostles only; for an apostle says, "The Scriptures are able to make wise to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus."
And again, he says, "All Scripture given by inspiration of God is profitable for teaching, for conviction, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works." Here then is the Divine Power for teaching men His wisdom. And what more do men need than to be made wise to salvation, instructed in righteousness, perfected, and thoroughly furnished for the manifestation of good works?
They must study it for themselves, thankfully availing themselves of all the help they can obtain from those who are able to teach others, and who have been taught of God before them. "If any man consent not to the wholesome words of our Lord Jesus, and to the teaching which is according to godliness, he is proud, knowing nothing." Now the Lord Jesus preached the gospel of the kingdom, and commanded all who believed it to be immersed. He prescribed immersion to no one else: because no one could be benefited by it who was not first a Divinely-instructed believer of the kingdom's gospel.
Those who have obeyed this gospel are the tzaddikim, or justified; those who have not obeyed it are the reshaim, or unjustified. Those are not taught of the Deity; their fear of Him, such as it is, is taught them by the precepts of men. The class is very large, and composed of innumerable orders, which, however diversified, have one common characteristic: they are "contentious, and obey not the truth;" they "stumble at the word, being disobedient" (1 Pet. ii. 8.) None of these shall understand.
This is the Divine sentence against them, and accounts for the failure of the many learned writers upon prophecy, to say nothing of the unlearned, in the enterprise of reading correctly the past and future of the world by the light of the prophetic word. Most of them lived too soon, and all of them were ignorant of the gospel; so that being reshaim, with all their learning, they could only demonstrate each other's foolishness, without any of them succeeding in pointing out the truth.
The wise, then, of the time of the end are those who believe "the things concerning the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ;" and have therefore been "immersed into the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit." He who understands these things has laid the foundation of intelligence in the things which Daniel heard but understood not.
The Christadelphian, Oct 1896. p361
When the time of the thunderings from the rainbowed throne arrives, the things they uttered will be unsealed. The unsealing of them will be the practical development of them in the execution of the judgments by the saints in the time of the end. This also will be the unclosing and unsealing of the words and the book which Daniel was commanded to shut up and seal till the time of the end (xii. 4,9); and this unclosing and unsealing in that time is symbolized by the little open scroll in the angel's hand.
As the apocalypse is a revelation for the sealed servants of the Deity alone, it was deemed inexpedient to write in detail the things in which they would be practically engaged. The apocalypse is not for their enemies; hence the universal failure of all their attempts to expound it. To these, the prophesyings of the thunders were to be impenetrable.
They were not to be permitted even to read them; therefore, the Spirit said, "Write them not." Thus, they can only be read in the history of "the terrible doings of the Elohim toward the children of men," in bringing them to submit themselves to the glorious majesty of the kingdom (Psa. lxvi. 3-7). The utterances of the thunders will be written upon the historic page by the valiant and mighty deeds of all the saints. This is the only record of them the world will be permitted to inspect.
That which Daniel had to shut up and seal has now been opened by Jesus. After his glorification, the times, seasons and details of his reappearance were revealed-
"The revelation of Jesus anointed which God gave to him to show to his servants things which must come to pass speedily."
We, in these last days, are a very privileged class. We have not only the Bible in our hands to study and understand, but have the wonderful writings of bro. Thomas and bro. Roberts who have opened up and expounded the Scriptures in these last days. *
The book of Daniel is to the Apocalypse as the acorn to the oak. The latter is the mystery of Daniel's prophecy symbolically revealed. This mystery of things he ministered he thought much upon, and sought to find out with great diligence, but without success; for he was informed that the mystery was hidden, and could not be penetrated until a time appointed.
As already intimated, Daniel saw a scroll, as indicated in the phrase "the words and seal the book," as well as John. He was told that "the words were closed up and sealed till the time of the end." Hence, these were to Daniel "a scroll at the right of Him seated upon the throne written within and on the outside, sealed up with seven seals." That closed and sealed against Daniel's understanding was the mystery or secret of the words of the book.
But one might inquire, If the mystery were to be concealed "till the time of the end," in what sense can John's apocalyptic scroll and seals be a revelation of the hidden wisdom of Daniel's book, seeing that John's age was not "the time of the end" -- a time which is only just now dawning upon the world? This we consider a very pertinent inquiry. In answer, the reader may be reminded, that the revelation to John was symbolical. He did not see the actual, but only the acted or dramatized events he describes.
What he saw was a pictorial representation, as it were -- a speaking hieroglyphic signifying to his understanding things which in the time of the end shall all have become accomplished facts, so that, in this end "the vision shall speak, and not lie" (Hab. ii. 3). The Apocalypse in its word-painting is the unrolling to the understanding of the servants of the Deity the series of events that should be successively unfolded, and which in their time of the end consummation should manifest as an accomplished result "THE END OF THE MATTER" (Dan. vii. 28).
The scroll had to be unrolled and its seals loosed before the vision it contained could be read and perceived, or intelligibly comprehended, when it should "speak at the end." The speaking at the end truthfully, is what is styled in modern phrase the denouement, a word signifying the discovery of the plot, the unravelling or issue of the matter, termed in Daniel "the end of the matter." This denouement was revealed to him; but the unfolding of the particular series and succession of events thereunto leading, was not made known to him.
He was informed in general terms, that the powers of the fourth beast dominion should make war upon and prevail against the saints until the Ancient of Days should come; and that then the saints should become a power mighty enough to destroy the fourth-beast system of powers; and to set up the kingdom of Deity. In the establishment of which as the great political fact of the age and generation, the denouement of God's dealings with the nations all the time of their ascendancy over the saints, would be manifested.
He was instructed that "the end of the matter" was to be a crisis elaborated providentially from antecedents evolved in the history of the fourth-beast nationalities; but what was the particular vein to be worked out in its several lodes to conduct to the main and terminable results, he did not "see."
In dramatical representation, the spectators behold the unrolling of the author's scroll, as the acting is in progress; but they have to wait till the end of the piece, the time of the end, for the dramatist's conception to "speak and not lie." Unless they have read the play, or seen it acted before, they have to "wait for the end of the matter," ere they can tell how the matter will come out, or what the ingenious dramatist designed should be the end of the whole, or the issue of the plot. It was thus with Daniel and John.
The end of the matter had been revealed to them both. They had read the denouement of the drama to result at the end from all its shifting scenes; but they had never seen nor read the play. The acting had not been revealed to them. In Daniel's time the stage had not been prepared, nor the dramatis personae, the company of performers, collected and arranged in their several parts for the performance of the tragedy to be played.
There was no fourth-beast dominion then; nor any saints who had "washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb" (Apoc. vii. 14) -- to be prevailed against thereby; and without these important parties in the premises, the actual tragedy could not begin; nor could a representation or rehearsal of the performance have come with any enlightening effect upon Daniel's mind, being ignorant as he was of the mystery afterwards revealed in the apostolic ministration of "the word."
"Justification" in Relation to the Times and Seasons
The idea that "a man must understand the prophetic times of Daniel, in order to be constituted one of the wise or justified," will not be entertained by those who know the Scriptures.
The apostles were justified, and from them the times and seasons were withheld.-(Acts 1:7.)
The Thessalonians were justified, and they so little understood those "prophetic times" that they expected Christ to be manifested in their day.-(2 Thess. 2:1.)
Those prophetic times were expressly "shut up and sealed till the time of the end" (Dan. 12:4), when accomplished history would reveal their bearing to those contemporary with the end, and interested in their expiry.
We may even go further and say that a man may understand these prophetic periods, and not be justified. A man may understand all mysteries, and be nothing.-(1 Cor. 13:2.)
Faith in the promises, working by love, leading to obedience, is the thing that justifies. The prophetic periods belong to the "strong meat," suitable for such as are of full age and growth in the life of the new man.
Justification has to do with the milk. At the same time, a man of the true milk type will soon be growing strong enough to want some of the higher viands. He certainly will not be characterized by the spirit of those who speak unbelievingly or lightly of the prophetic periods.
As the Spirit's guest, he won't shew the bad manners of an unjustified intruder, in ridiculing the higher dishes on the Spirit's table. He may say they are, as yet, too strong for his digestion, but if he begin to "speak evil against them," his companions at the table will be for leaving him to himself, and the just judgment of the lord of the house.
There is a little uncertainty as to the beginning of the 1335 days. We are about the end of them, we know; and near the time when Daniel shall stand in his lot.
The Christadelphian, Dec 1870
7 And I heard the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand and his left hand unto heaven, and sware by him that liveth for ever that it shall be for a time, times, and an half [1260 years]; and when he shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished.
John was favored with a vision of the same man seen by Daniel, only instead of seeing him clothed with linen at the time, he saw him "clothed with a cloud." He had to communicate with John upon the same subject he had been treating of with Daniel upon the "How long to the end of the wonders?"Eureka 10.11.
There was a day when the law of the land would not have permitted us to assemble as we do this morning. There was a day when we should have been compelled to take refuge in the privacy of forest and glen, in order to carry out our Master's injunction to break bread in remembrance of him. But that day is gone, and gone for ever.
The termination of the Papal ascendancy for 1,260 years is in no way more distinctly marked than in the total disappearance of all power on the part of the system personally and geographically headed up in Rome, to coerce the weakest of mankind against their conscience. The saints were "given into his hand" for time, and times and-a- half; that period is at an end, notwithstanding the attempts to prove the contrary by such as delight to say
"My Lord delayeth his coming."
Consequently, everywhere under heaven the saints are "out of the hand" of the apostasy, and at liberty, in any country where they may exist, (Even in Rome itself, where Protestants meet, and Bibles circulate under the very walls of the Vatican.) to assemble, in obedience
Bro Roberts - Breaking of bread
8 And I heard, but I understood not: then said I, O my Lord, what shall be the end of these things?
Daniel was so wrapped up in the vision that it grieved him deeply not to be able to understand all that was to take place. He longed, hoped, waited and prayed for the end of these things. Are we deeply moved, seeing so much fulfilled prophecy and living on the brink of Christ's coming? Let us examine ourselves. *
9 And he said, Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end.
The time of the end
The Lord's return is as much "due," so to speak, now as at the first time the disciples broke bread together after his departure. Nay, it is more so. Many things had to happen before the disciples could hope to see him again. These have all happened so far as their general outline is concerned. In a peculiar sense, the ends of the age have gathered on our generation. More numerous are the reasons than they have ever been before, for "looking for his appearing."
We know neither the day nor the hour; but many converging indications tell us that the time is near, even at the door. The rate at which these indications are developing may be slower than we had been led to look for; but the indications themselves are clear and unmistakable.
They are the indications supplied by the Lord himself, apart from which, we should, of course, have been without any clue. Having them, we have a clue. It is clear he intended us to rely on them as affording such a clue. What other meaning is there to his words:
"When these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh!"
These "things" embrace all that has been divinely revealed as characteristic of the time of the end. Much has been revealed on this head through Daniel, Ezekiel, and other prophets, and especially through John in the Isle of Patmos. Putting it all together, we are able to recognise our time as the time of the "end" when the vision shall "speak" in a manner that all shall listen to.
...This peculiarity has led to the expectation of Christ's appearing being indulged in, apparently with good reason, by several generations of believers since the Lord's departure. It may strike you as strange that this premature expectation could be indulged in, in view of the periods of Daniel which reach down to the end of the nineteenth century; but then, we must remember that it was expressly intimated to Daniel that the vision shown to him was "closed and sealed till the time of the end" (12:9).
When the hand of God is upon a matter, no man can see it, however visible it may be in a natural sense. Consequently the brethren were not able to check and rectify their apocalyptically-engineered expectations by the information contained in Daniel.
There was a wisdom in this which we may see. It would not have been advantageous for the brethren to know that the time was far distant. Such knowledge would have been calculated to depress and paralyse. They were, therefore, permitted to indulge in the hope of an earlier consummation of things that came within the scope of the divine purpose.
It would seem appropriate, that as God had warned Israel by Moses when the time for their deliverance had about arrived, and again by Christ, about forty years before the heavens and earth of their power passed away, that now again "when the time of the promise draws nigh" that all families of the earth should be blessed. God would raise up a messenger to make known His purposes, by unfolding "the vision" that related to that glorious time. The prophet Daniel was commanded to "shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end."
He was also informed by the angel that "at the time of the end shall be the vision." Habakkuk says, "that at the end, it shall speak, and not lie." From these testimonies we are justified in looking to see whether God has sent anyone to unseal "the book" and make known the vision.
Some forty years ago, a few of the generation that is now passing away, had their attention arrested, and were electrified by the wonderful truths contained in the Bible unfolded to them by Dr. John Thomas. "The time of the end" was rapidly approaching, when in 1838, Mehemit Ali, king of Egypt, pushed at the Sultan or Dragonic king at Constantinople. About this time, Dr. Thomas appeared, and proclaimed "the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ" as the faith which was necessary for a person to have before baptism.
He made plain the book of the prophet Daniel and the revelation that John received on the island of Patmos. He was the first to insist upon a scriptural faith before baptism, in order to salvation; and fearlessly proclaimed that unless a person intelligently comprehended the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, he could not be of the "One Faith." He proved from the Word of God, that all the sects and denominations of Christendom were ignorant of the "One Faith," and consequently they were in an unsaved condition; and in a state of apostacy from the truth.
That "being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise," having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their hearts, they did not have the "One Hope," without which they could not enter into the Kingdom of God.
He wrote and spoke as one having authority; and as no other one of his generation did. The way in which he massed and grouped Scripture together, unfolding but one harmonious purpose, from Genesis to Revelations, convinced "the few" that the Scriptures were in deed and in truth the Word of God, wholly inspired and infallible. The result of his labour was a preparation of "a people for the Lord," who are now being prepared by severe chastisement and discipline.
Bro AD Strickler
The Christadelphian, July 1887
10 Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried; but the wicked shall do wickedly: and none of the wicked shall understand; but the wise shall understand.
To understand there must be a ready mind, a listening ear-the fear of the Lord. These things are foolishness to the world, therefore the wicked do not understand. If we drift along occupied with the world, we will not understand and will be classed as wicked, of no use to God.*
..."a set time" exists in the mind of the Deity for the consummation of His purpose--a conclusion which must commend itself to every mind
"None of the wicked shall understand, but the wise shall understand" (Dan. xii, 10).
This would imply not only that uprightness is necessary, but also that the matter is not communicated in such a form as to be apprehended on the surface of it, but requires the qualification of "wisdom" to elucidate the hidden meaning.
We would also quote words of similar purport occurring in the Apocalypse:
"Here is wisdom; let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast";
showing that the matter as presented was an enigma requiring to be unlocked by the keys of knowledge. In view of this, we need not be surprised at the mistakes that have from time to time been made in the interpretation of the times and seasons. Numberless and outrageously absurd theories have, in all ages of the world, been put forward on the strength of what is written on times and seasons.
Dates have been fixed, and events predicted which time has falsified. This fact has staggered weak minds, and induced contempt and scepticism in reference to the whole subject. Even many of the devout have become disgusted, and refuse to give credence to anything advanced on the subject; but this must surely be admitted to be evidence of short-sightedness rather than of wisdom.
Christendom Astray - Times and Seasons
11 And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away, and the abomination that maketh desolate set up [529-'33], there shall be a 1 290 days [1820-'23, which is signalized by the commencement of the sixth vial].
"and when the Daily hath been removed, even for to set up [529-'33] an abomination of desolation (there shall be) a thousand two hundred and ninety days".
Here is a long period without any other beginning indicated than that of its setting up. Its continuance is stated at 1290 years.
This is the whole length of time during which the abomination was to prevail upon the land of Israel without beginning to dry up; in other Words, when the 1290 ended, the drying up process would commence; but, as to the exact number of years that would be consumed in the progressive outpouring of "that determined" before the consummation would be reached, we are not informed; of this, how-ever, we may be assured, that the outpouring of "that determined" upon the Desolator of the Holy Land, will not have reached its consummation, until Gog falls upon the mountains of Israel in the war of ARAMGEDDON; which is the great climacteric of the sixth vial.
The period of the sixth vial, the wrathful contents of which are "that determined upon the Desolator", is not included in the 1290 years of the last desolating abomination of the series. The end of these terrible years connects with the beginning of the sixth vial; because there was to be a desolating by the ascendant abomination, until that .determined should come to be "poured out upon the Desolator".
Now, what is the fact in regard to the abomination in the ascendant? It is, that the power en-throned in Constantinople, the Little Horn of the Goat, in the spasmodic grasp of Greek, Saracen, Latin, and Turk, summarily expressed in the terms Catholic and Mohammedan, has been the Desolating Abomination of the Holy Land for 1290 years, ending in 1820-'3.
The condition of the country between the reign of Adrian, A.D. 137, and the beginning of the reign of Justinian, A.D. 527, was as prosperous as any other province of the Roman empire; but, a change of fortune ensued in the epoch of his reign, A.D. 529-'33, which was signalized by a desolating war between the empires of Persia and Constantinople, in which the Euphratean countries, including Palestine, were the seat of conflict.
A peace was made in 533, which proved only a suspension of arms. The war was renewed in 540, and thenceforth continued its destructive course for twenty years. For 1290 years, wasting and desolation progressed with ruinous effect; especially since the adherents of Mohammed made Syria and Palestine (both included in the land promised to Abraham and his Seed) their battle-ground with the Greeks and Latins.
The Ottoman Turks possessed themselves of Constantinople under the sixth trumpet, in 1453; and they will be expelled from it under the sixth vial, when "that determined" shall have had its full effect upon them.
They were, as Mohammedans, identified with the 1290 years of desolating abomination for a long series of ages and generations; hence, being found in occupation of the Holy Land, and filling the throne of the Little Horn of the Goat, or Dragon, at the end of the 1290 years, they have become obnoxious to the wrath, which has reduced their power to the nullity we behold in 1868.
If, then, we have correctly located the beginning of the 1290 years, in the epoch 529-'33, the termination of the period will be 1820-'23, which is signalized by the commencement of the sixth vial, or of "that determined upon the Desolator".
In concluding this section, I may add, that Dan. 12:11, has given the commentators much trouble. The Daily Sacrifice was taken away A.D. 70. As the passage stands in the English Version, it would seem that the 1290 should begin there. This would bring the end of the period in 1360, the very midnight of abominations making desolate.
... In our text, more than from the time would be the exact signification, in the sense of when or after. The other word husar is in the perfect, not the future sense, as in the C.V. - maiaith husar hathtamid, after the Daily has been removed.
It was removed to make way for the over-spreading of abominations of desolation; but how long after its removal to the beginning of the particular abomination that was to continue 1290, it gives no information. The beginning of the period would be known by those who should be able to perceive the Opening of the sixth vial at its termination, and from thence reckoning back 1290 years.
It had a contemporary beginning with the 1260, ending in the fall of "the tenth of the great city," and resurrection of the Witnesses, 1790-'93; and with the 1335 of Dan. 12:12, ending 1868. If the Justinian epoch 529-'33, be not the correct beginning of these periods, I know not what other historical epochs can have any reasonable claims to be true.
In regard to the Holy Land itself Moses declared to Israel before they obtained possession of it, that because of their violation of the divine law concerning it,
"Your land shall be desolate, and your cities waste. Then shall the land enjoy her sabbaths as long as it lieth desolate, and ye be in your enemies' lands then shall the land rest, and enjoy her sabbaths. As long as it lieth desolate it shall rest; because it did not rest in your sabbaths, when ye dwelt upon it."
This is the reason of its long desolation for the past 1290 years, and why God has permitted the Mohammedan power, or "abomination of desolation," to perpetuate itself there till this present. Its policy until within a very recent period has been to discourage and prevent the cultivation of the land, not to fulfill the decree of heaven, but for the gratification of its own barbarian impulses.
In sating these it has unwittingly accomplished Yahweh's decree, as recorded by Moses, who furthermore declared that the desolation and sabbatism of the soil should not be perpetual.
... "It shall come to pass in that day that Yahweh shall beat off from the channel of the river (Euphrates) unto the stream of Egypt (the Nile), and ye shall be gathered one by one, O ye children of Israel."
This beating off will be fatal to the integrity and independence of the power expelled. It is nothing less than the forcible dismemberment of the Ottoman empire, by which all the land promised to Abraham and his seed, from the Nile to the Euphrates, is detached from the dominion of Constantinople.
...We see, then, that there is a limit set to Gentile sovereignty over Palestine; and that consequently Ottoman supremacy cannot be perpetuated there indefinitely. It is to perish out of the Lord's land. This event being ascertained as one of the certainties of the future, it is interesting to know if the crisis be near or afar off. Respecting this there can be no doubt in the minds of those who understand the testimony of God.
In Daniel it is testified that the desolation of the land was to continue until a consummation indicated by the pouring out of that determined upon the desolator. The Ottoman is the desolating power, which was to prevail uninterruptedly till the end of 1290 years; for that was the period assigned to the 'abomination that maketh desolate" anterior to the pouring out of that determined upon the desolator.
Now, without seeking for a date from which to originate a calculation, the question is, has the desolator been subject to any judicial outpouring? It is obvious to all the world that he has; and it is equally obvious that in the ratio of the continuance of that outpouring, the fortunes of the Holy Land are rising and brightening.
The Ottoman power is "drying up," and Palestine is going ahead like one of the Western States of America. This is too notorious longer to be denied. The conclusion is therefore manifest, that the consummation of desolation is passed; and that the Land of Israel has entered upon a new era; in other words that Yahweh is remembering his covenant and his land.
Hence also the 1290 years are passed, and have been succeeded by the judicial outpouring upon the desolator. And when did this predetermined pouring out begin? In 1820, the epoch of the beginning of Turkey's calamities which have continued with but little interruption until the present hour. Her doom is recorded in the following words by the apostle John:
"The sixth angel poured out his vial upon the great river Euphrates; and the water thereof was dried up."
The sixth vial poured out is the "that determined," which Daniel was informed was to be "poured out upon the desolator." This desolator in the apocalyptic oracle is styled "the Great River Euphrates," because, in relation to Palestine, it originated from the Euphratean country; and because that river rises in and flows along the border of its dominion.
Herald of the kingdom and age to come, Jan 1855
12 Blessed is he that waiteth, and cometh to the 1335 days.
13 But go thou thy way till the end be: for thou shalt rest, and stand in thy lot at the end of the days.
He will arise from the dust of Persia, where he has been resting since "the third year of Cyrus," B.C. 540; and appearing before "Messiah the Prince," of whom he wrote, and being approved, as doubtless he will be, he will be strengthened, and henceforth be prepared to "speak with the enemy in the gate," who at present occupies the land.
Daniel would rest, sleeping in the dust until the true saints inherit the Kingdom. Will we be among the few to stand in our lot, prepared for the coming of the heavenly Bridegroom? The answer is in the conduct of our everyday lives in the Truth which has been our great privilege and tremendous responsibility to possess in these last days. *
*Bro David Clubb