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THIS WORKIS DEDICATED
POSTHUMOUS WORK OF PASTOR RUSSELL
His Last Legacy to the Dear Israel of God. (Matt. 20 :9) salto make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery which free the beginning of the world hath been bid in God." "Wherein Ho bath abounded toward us in all wisdom and pro. dence, having made known unto as the mystery of His will, according to His good pleasure which He hath purposed do Himself; that in the dispensation of the fulness of the mes He paight gather together tone all things, under
BROOKLYN, N. P., O. & A.
(British Copyright Sosured)
INCE the days of the Apostles, Christian people have
been looking for the coming of our Lord Jesus in great
power and glory; for He said that He would come again and receive His Church unto Himself. He further pointed out that for some time prior to the completion of the Church He would be present, gathering out from Babylon and from the world the truly consecrated, and that dur ing His presence "the Mystery of God” would be finished.
Through St. John the Lord Jesus revealed the fact that the Church would be developed during seven distinct periods, or epochs; and that for each of these epochs He would have a special_angel, or messenger, to serve the other members of the Body. It follows, then, that the mese senger to the last, or Laodicean, epoch would declare the Presence of the Lord and the time of the Harvest of the Gospel Age. The great Master laid special emphasis on the importance of the messenger to the seventh, or Laodic cean, period of the Church, saying that such an one would be "a faithful and wise servant, whom his Lord woulu make ruler over all His Household, to give them meat in due season.”
Those consecrated Christians who have read and fully appreciated the Truth as contained in the preceding six volumes of STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES readily see and agree that Charles Taze Russell was the messenger of the Church of Laodicea. In the mind of every one who believes the Bible the evidence set forth in this volume will establish that fact beyond the question of a doubt.
In the light of Divine Prophecy, now being daily fulfilled and made clear to “the watchers,” the following from the pen of Pastor Russell is further proof that he was sent of God to this generation. Long years before the be ginning of the trouble now upon the nations he wrote:
"The four exhibitions of the Lord, given to Elijah, represent, we believe, four manifestations in which the Lord is about to reveal Himself to mankind, the first three of which will prepare men for the final one, in which will come the desired blessing to all the famia Hies of the earth. These are:
"(1) The mighty winds rending the very rocks. Blowtog winds seem to be used in Scripture for wars. The wars, whose dark clouds have threatened the civilized world so ominously for the past thirty years, have been mairaculously hindered to give opportunity for 'sealing
the Lord's consecrated people in their foreheads (intel. lectually) with the Present Truth. We are therefore to expect that when these winds of war shall be let loose, it will mean a cataclysm of warfare which shall divide kingdoms (mountains)-prefigured by the mighty wind shown to Elijah (1 Kings 19:11), which rent the rocks. But God's Kingdom will not follow the epoch of war; the world will not thus be made ready for the Reign of Im. manuel. No; a further lesson will be needed and will be given. It is represented in
“(2) An earthquake. Throughout the Scriptures an earthquake seems always to represent revolution; and it is not unreasonable to expect that an era of general warfare would so arouse the lower classes of Europe and so discontent them with their lot (and especially with the conditions which would follow such a war) that revolu. tion would be the next thing in order. (Rev. 16:18.) But, severe though those revolutionary experiences will be to the world, they are not sufficient to prepare men to hear the voice of God. It will require
“(3) The fire from heaven-an epoch of Divine Judg. ments and chastisements upon a maddened but uncon. verted world, wild in anarchy, as other Scriptures show us. The results of their wars, revolutions and anarchy, in the failure of their schemes, will have a humbe ling effect, and will prepare mankind for God's revelation of Himself in
“(4). The still small voice. Yes; He who spoke to the winds and the waves of the Sea of Galilee will, in due time, 'speak peace to the peoples.' He will speak with authority, commanding the observance of His long neglected Law of Love. "And whosoever will not hear that Prophet shall be cut off from among His people.' (Acts 3:23.)”—THE WATCH TOWER, July 1, 1898, p 208.
“Looking back to the prophetic testimony respecting the Times of the Gentiles, we perceive that our Lord's words, ‘Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles until the Times of the Gentiles be filled fuli,' give the intimation that the determined times, or years, in which the empire of earth would be in the hands of Gentile governments was a fixed one from
tho Divine standpoint. And it, as we believe the Scriptures to teach, Gentile domination was provided for up to October, 1914, it would seem but a reasonable interpretation that Divine power would not be exercised to their dethronement until after the time allotted for their reign had ended-October, 1914.". THE WATCH TOWER, July 1, 1904, D. 198.
In 1879 Charles Taze Russell began the publication of THE WATCH TOWER, of which he was the sole editor as long as he remained on earth. THE WATCH TOWER was, and is, the first and only journal declaring the pres. ence of the Lord Jesus. Pastor Russell being the messen. ger to the Laodicean Church, and occupying the position of the Lord's special servant to give the Household of Faith meat in due season, it was to be expected that he would bring forth from the Lord's great "Storehouse" the needed spiritual food for the Church, in harmony with
God's will. By the Lord's grace he wrote the six volumes OC STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES, which writings, aside trom the Bible, have gladdened more hearts and thrilled Christians with greater hope and joyful expectation than have any other writings extant. These books have been properly designated "Keys to the Divine Plan of the Ages.” These “keys" have been placed in the hands of thousands cChristian people throughout the world, and have enabled them to unlock the Lord's Treasure-house, the Bible, and there to see some of the "treasures of wise dom" and knowledge of God! Some have been able to use these "keys” more effectually than have others. “God hath set the members in the Body as it hath pleased Him."
Time and again Pastor Russell said that the Seventh Volume of STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES would be written; and it was expected that he would write it. The Scriptures show that the Seventh Volume must be pub. lighed. Pastor Russell passed from the earth, and the Seventh Volume remained unpublished. In his last moments he said, "Some one else can write the Seventh Volume." For any one to arrogate to himself the authority to write and publish the Seventh Volume would, we be. Leve, seem presumptuous before the Lord. Whom, then, would the Lord have to write it?
Pastor Russell was a man of unusual modesty. Great men usually are modest. The examination of the contents of this book will disclose the fact that it deals with Revo. lation and Ezekiel; that the Lord long ago caused to be recorded therein, in symbolic language, a history of the Church, particularly the closing earthly experiences there. of; that therein He set forth that He would uncover the frauds, deceptions and blasphemous teachings and prac tices of the church pominal-both Catholic and Protestant; that in the last days He would then make bare the unholy alliance between the unrighteous ecclesiastical systems and the corrupt political elements of the earth, which rellglous systems have prospered and grown fat in the name of Christ; that the Lord pronounces His indignation and wrath against all such Babylonish systems and marks their utter destruction in a Time of Trouble such as the world has never known and will never again know; and that the earthly creature made prominent therein above all others
the messenger of the Laodicean Church—“that wi and faithful servant” of the Lord - CHARLES TAZE RUSSELL, In view of the facts stated, is it at all surprising that the Lord spared him the publication of the Seventh Volume?
But the fact is, he did write it. This book may properly be said to be a posthumous publication of Pastor Russell Why? Because to him the Lord gave the "key"; to him was given the privilege of making clear to the Church in its last years the “Mystery of God”; to him was granted the privilege of bearing from the hands of the Lord to the Household of Faith "meat in due season” for the special development and sustenance of God's dear little ones. This service he has faith performed. This book is chiefly a compilation of things which he wrote and which have been brought together in harmonious style by properly applying the symbols which he explained to the Church.
By his last Will and Testament Pastor Russell desig. nated George H. Fisher, of Scranton, Pa., as one whom he would approve as a member of the Editorial Staff of THE WATCH TOWER—the most important journal published on earth. For many years Brother Fisher has been consecrated to the Lord, a careful student of the Bible in the light of the Message brought from the Lord by the messen. ger to the Laodicean Church; and for some time he has made a careful and prayerful study of the Book of Ezekiel.
When Pastor Russell was with us he gave direction that the BIBLE STUDENTS MANUAL should be prepared by Clayton J. Woodworth, also of Scranton, Pa. This Manual was published by this Society, and has proven a great blessing to the Household of Faith. The preparation of that Manual required a critical examination of everything Pastor Russell had written; and thus Brother Woodworth was enabled to become more familiar, probably, than any one else with the explanation of the Scriptures which had been given by Brother Russell. In this manner the Lord seemed to have qualified him for some special work. With the "key" which Brother Russell, as the Lord's servant, had placed in his hands, Brother Woodworth, by the Lord's grace, has been enabled to bring together everything that Brother Russell wrote on Revelation, and to explain and harmonize the other parts of that book with the Divine Plan; also, to treat similarly, the Song of Solomon.
It seemed pleasing to the Lord that Brothers C. J. Woodworth and George H. Fisher should prepare the Seventh Volume, under the direction of the WATCH TOWER BIBLE AND TRACT SOCIETY. While both residing in the same city, they have worked separate and apart from each other, not even comparing notes. The reader will be able to judge how fully the work of each harmonizes with that of the other and with the Divine Plan, thus giving further evidence of the Lord's direction in this matter.
Pastor Russell long ago said, in substance, that the Seventh Volume would not be for the development of the Church; that the preceding six volumes of STUDIES IN