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law was the keeping of the Sabbath, Ex. 20:8. This was based upon God's great rest day in Gen. 2. Upon this is founded not only the week of days, but also the week of weeks unto Pentecost (Lev. 23:15-16); the week of months, with the Atonement and seven days' feast of Tabernacles in the seventh month (Lev. 23:27-28); the week of years, ending with the Sabbatic year (Lev. 25:4); the week of weeks of years, ending with the seventh Sabbatic year, and followed by the year of Jubilee (Lev. 25: 8-12).
Even the duration of Israel's great punishments was based upon this law of the sevens. Their captivity in Babylon was for seventy years. Jer. 25:11-12; Dan. 9:2. The great period revealed to Daniel (Ch. 9), unto the coming of the Messiah was divided into seventy sevens. The unequaled period of Israel's punishment and dispersion in the lands of their enemies, prophesied by Moses, is, with four-fold emphasis, specified to be for seven times. (Lev. 26:18, 21, 24, 28). This sacred seven is woven into the laws, life and history of the chosen people, with whom God established His theocracy. And notwithstanding all of Israel's rebellion and sinfulness and consequent chastisement, there still remains for them and the whole world a keeping of the Sabbath. Heb. 4:9 margin. With God a day is as a thousand years (Psa. 90), and a thousand years as one day. 2 Pet. 3:8.
Upon this rock of the sacred sevens we can consistently, with the Jews, base our conclusion that as we have the scriptural week, week of weeks, week of months, week of years, week of weeks of years, week of seventy years, week of times, week of olams or aions (ages), see page 222, so we also have the great week of Millenniums. Six thousand year days of labor and then the Millennium, or blessed seventh thousand years of rest.
This scriptural doctrine of the Millennium cannot be shaken. Its root is in the Sabbath of Genesis, and its fruit is in the thousand-year kingdom of Revelation. It shines throughout the Word of God as a glorious hope for the nations, whom God has promised to bless. Gen. 12:3.
Shine on, o blessed Revelation of God, and the Lord stamp upon our hearts the warning that, “If any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophesy, God shall take away his part from the Tree of Life.” Rev. 22:19. *
*For a mcre full statement of this doctrine see the author's pamphlet “The Millennium,” F. H. Revell Co.
About the year seventeen hundred a new error crept into the Church, to-wit, Post-millennialism.
This was instituted by Daniel Whitby, an English divine, or proclaimed by him as a new hypothesis, namely, that the Church would prosper and extend until the world should be converted, and this triumph of the Church would constitute the Millennium; and that Jesus would not come until after the Millennium.
No wonder that he calls it a "new hypothesis,” for he himself bears testimony in his “Treatise on Traditions” that the doctrine of the Millennium, or the reign of Saints on earth a thousand years, passed among the best of Christians for two hundred and fifty years, for a tradition apostolical, and as such is delivered by many fathers of the second and third century, who speak of it as the tradition of our Lord and His apostles.
For want of space we refer the reader to “The Voice of the Church,” by D. T. Taylor, to show the long line of eminent witnesses, embracing Hermas, Justin and the Martyrs, Luther, Melanchthon, Mede, Milton, Burnett, Isaac Newton, Watts, Charles Wesley, Toplady, and a host of others, illustrious in the annals of the Church, who, through the past eighteen centuries, have borne overwhelming testimony to the truth of the pre-millennial coming of Christ. *
Strange, indeed, that the Church, in the face of such evidence, should drift away from the simple teaching of the Word and the faith of the fathers. And yet, though of such recent origin, this error of post-millennialism has not only crept into the Church, but has been accepted by the great majority of Christians, pastors and people.
This, then, is the principal point of the question,
*See also page 66.
namely: Will the coming of Christ occur before the Millennium, and may it therefore happen at any moment, as Pre-millennialists believe, or will it occur after the Millennium, and thus be, at least, a thousand years in the future, as Post-millennialists believe?
We now invite your prayerful attention to the following scriptural arguments, which, we believe, show that the coming of our Lord will be pre-millennial.
No. I. The Antichrist. In 2 Thes. 2:8,1 The Antichrist, who is on all sides confessed to be pre-millennial, is to be destroyed with the brightness of His (Christ's) coming, or more literally the epiphany (appearing*) of His own presence. This fixes the coming of Christ to be pre-millennial.
Bishop McIlvaine says of this argument that "it is wholly unanswerable.”
Even Mr. Brown, the great champion of post-millennialism, admits that this is an apparent evidence for the premillennial advent, and he has been obliged to meet it by that process of "spiritualizing" Scripture which has been so condemned by Dr. John Pye Smith, Martin Luther, Sir Isaac Newton, Bishop Hooker, Dr. Adam Clarke, and others. On this argument alone we might rest, but we have others fully as conclusive.
No. II. Immediately After the Tribulation. In Mat. 24:29-31,2 the coming of the Son of Mant is said to be immediately after the Tribulation. But this
*See Greek értedávela same word used in 1 Tim. 6:14; 2 Tim. 1:10; 4:1; 4:8; and Titus 2:13; in each place translated appearing.
*This is His coming at the Revelation; see diagram,
(1) 2 Thes. 2:8. And then ly after the tribulation of those shall that Wicked be revealed, days shall the sun be darkened, whom the Lord shall consume and the moon shall not give her with the spirit of his mouth, and light, and the stars shall fall shall destroy with the bright from heaven, and the powers of ness of his coming :
the heavens shall be shaken: (2) Mat. 24:29. Immediate 30. And then shall appear tbe