Complete report of the Great Religious Debate between
Rev. E. L. Eaton, D. D.,
And Pastor C. T. Russell, V. D. M., on the
Subject of "Eschatology."
THE REV. E. L. EATON, D. D.,
AND PASTOR C. T. RUSSELL
BEGIN GREAT DEBATE ON RELIGION
Carnegie Music Hall in Allegheny Crowded,
and Speakers Listened to Attentively
as they Discussed Probation
TELLING POINTS MADE BY BOTH
REPRINTED FROM THE GAZETTE OF OCTOBER 19
Remarkable in the demonstration of religious interest, the series of discussions
between the Rev. E. L. Eaton, D. D. pastor of the North Avenue Methodist
Episcopal church, and C. T. Russell, pastor of the Allegheny Bible House
congregation, was inaugurated yesterday afternoon with a debate on the general
topic of probation. The meeting was held in the Allegheny Carnegie music hall,
and a larger assemblage had never been seen in the building. The remarks of both
speakers were interrupted at frequent intervals with fervid responses and
The Rev. Dr. W. H. McMillan, pastor of the Second United Presbyterian church,
Allegheny, presided. Half an hour before the meeting was opened the hall was
packed with people. The aisles of the main auditorium, the balcony, the stage and
the vestibules were given over for standing room to the eager crowd. Preceding
the debate a short devotional exercise was held and the singing of the hymns, "All
Hail the Power of Jesus' Name," "Guide Me, O Thou Great Jehovah," and "Tell
Me the Old, Old Story" was entered into with the zest of worshipers at a revival.
No collection basket was passed, and the following proposition was announced
PROPOSITION THAT WAS DISCUSSED
"The Scriptures clearly teach that divine grace and power, full and free, have
been constantly exercised toward mankind since the fall, to the intent that all, if
they would, might be saved: hence there will be no probation after death, nor need
of any. Dr. Eaton to affirm. Pastor Russell to deny."
The ushers were selected from the members of the two congregations. Prof B.
Frank Walters of the Bible House presided at the organ, and E. P. Russell of the
North Avenue church led in the singing.
The next debate will be held tomorrow evening at 8 o'clock in the Allegheny
Carnegie hall, the Rev. Dr. H. D. Lindsay presiding. The proposition for
discussion will be:
"The Scriptures clearly teach that the souls of the dead are unconscious while
their bodies are in the grave. Pastor Russell will affirm. Dr. Eaton will deny."
The affirmative side was first given by Dr. Eaton, who spoke as follows:
All mankind are on trial for their moral character and eternal destiny. The object
of this probation is to decide whether they will accept the offer of eternal life, and
by obedience to God rise from a state of depravity and sin to a state of holiness, or
whether they will reject this offer of life and salvation, continue in sin and reap
the awful retribution of sin at last.
We are on probation for a good many things of this life; for our health. Every
human being is on probation all the time for his health, and he may so treat his
health or the laws of nature as to cause it to be entirely over-thrown. We are on
trial all the time as to the matter of wealth; of happiness; of education; social
position; moral character — whether we shall be honest or dishonest; for personal
influence. All these things, exceedingly important as they are, are under the
control of our own will.
A time will come in respect to all of these when we shall cross a line and cannot
retrace our steps. Who shall say that if we are on probation for these important
things we are not on probation for other important things, for eternal things? Who
shall say that with regard to my eternal destiny I shall not cross a line which will
mark the eternal settlement of that important interest?
"Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat, but of the tree of the
knowledge of good and evil; thou shalt not eat of it." When God made Adam and
Eve he put them on probation, and those are the terms. "I call heaven and earth to
record this day against you — life and death. Therefore choose life, that thou and
thy seed may live." That is the declaration of Moses, that the race is on trial for
life or death.
ALL NATIONS ARE ON PROBATION
The heathen nations, as well as the Christian nations, are on probation. It is not
limited to Christians at all. It is constantly assumed that there are none but
Christians on probation. If that be true, then three-fifths of the human race, who
die in infancy, have had no opportunity for salvation. Those who have died in
heathendom have had no opportunity. But they were redeemed in Christ, in the
great offering of salvation. It does not follow that every human being must know
Him personally, individually, in order to secure the benefits of worldwide
redemption. No member of the human race knew Jesus Christ as his Savior for
4000 years, but millions were saved who did not know him.
How were they saved? By believing and obeying God. All are saved on those
terms. The Scriptures do not leave us in doubt on this point. Writing to the Roman
Christians, just from heathendom, the apostle says: "The invisible things of Him
from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things
that are made, even His eternal godhead and deity, so that they are without
excuse." "There is no respect of persons with God; as many as have sinned under
the law shall perish by the law; for not the hearers of the law shall be justified, but
In the apostle's discussion in Romans 1 and 2 he shows that every heathen in the
world is responsible for the light he has. The light that lighteth every man that
Cometh into the world hath reached all of them, and they can be saved by that
light if they will. If that is the situation I am willing to presume that the entire race
are having a fair chance for eternal life. This life is not one of retribution. There is
a great deal of evil in the world, and even death came by sin, but it is not the
punishment for sin.
Job was accused of being wicked because he suffered, but evil was not sent to
punish sin in him, but to perfect his character in his day of probation. The blind
man whom Jesus cured was declared not to have sinned, nor to be suffering for
sin, but to show forth the glory of God. The evil of this life is permitted in order to
furnish occasion for the display of divine mercy and grace.
God's offer of mercy is confined to this life. John 8: 23, Prov. 1: 24-28, Ezek. 33:
9, Prov. 1: 7, 2 Cor. 6: 2, Heb. 4: 7, Eccl. 9: 10. These scriptures have one
declaration — that mercy is confined to this life. The parable of the wheat and the
tares in the 13th chapter enforces this thought. It covers the entire history of the
race. The Lord explained the parable to the disciples, who realized that it
imported a very serious problem. He said: "The harvest is the end of the world"
— aion — age, the end of human history. This word stands for the entire sweep of
human history from the beginning to the end; it does not mean a dispensation or a
fragment of time. "Lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the world" — the
"world" stands for the entire sweep of human history.
When human history ends on this planet the harvest takes place. The Son of Man
shall send forth His angels and gather out of His kingdom — notgather seed for
the kingdom, but gather out of the kingdom which is now in the world, the tares
— allthings which offend and do iniquity." That seems to me to limit probation to
that period. All people in the world, wheat and tares, are growing together on
PROBATION IN THE INTERMEDIATE STATE
If there is any probation after death it must be in the intermediate state; it cannot
be in heaven; it is not on earth; it must be in hades or sheol, that conscious state of
existence into which all mankind goes at death and where they remain until the
resurrection and judgment. We have one picture of the souls in this state in the
Old Testament and another picture in the New Testament.
In the 14th chapter of Isaiah are these words: "Hell from beneath is moved for
thee to meet thee at thy coming." Belshazzar, the last of the Babylonish kings and
wickedest of them all, is here described; it is a magnificent celebration they are
having in the lower world, a picnic in hell, the celebration of the down-coming of
a lost soul.
"It stirs up all the dead for thee, even all the chief ones of the earth" — a picture
of the most abject helplessness and misery that could possibly be dreamed of is
that of the man who sat on the throne of Babylon, defied God and God's people
and drank wine out of the golden vessels of the temple was finally stricken and
that night perished, to wake up in sheol
with the demons and lost men, taunting him with his awful end. If there is any
probation after death it must be in sheol, but that man was not on probation in
The other picture is more definite in the New Testament. The hades of the New
Testament is equivalent to the sheol of the Old, and in the 16th chapter of Luke
we have the story of the rich man and Lazarus describing it. Luke, writing for the
cultured Greeks, was delineating various phases of character and the results in
NOT BANISHED BECAUSE HE WAS RICH
Some ask, why was the rich man banished to hell — becausehe was rich? No; but
because, being rich, he did not love God. That is the tendency of riches
Throughout the Bible everywhere you can find men who were pardoned and
saved, who committed adultery, murder and theft; they repented and were saved.
But where can you find any rich man saved? It is a tremendous commentary upon
Ahab and Judas were on probation, and they both went to hades. If there is any
probation after death it must be in hades, for here are two live people who have
died and are there — one in paradise, and the other in Tartarus. The latter did not
repent; he had the same character he had here, and, just like many people since,
who do not like God's plan and propose a plan of their own, he wanted something
done which was not God's proposition. His prayers to Abraham were denied, and
a place where prayer cannot be answered is not a world of probation. That man
had entered upon his retribution — not his final and eternal retribution, but the
retribution of the intermediate state, which Peter calls Tartarus.
Peter speaks about the preaching to the spirits in prison. (1 Peter 3:18, 20) I have
never encountered anybody who did not consider that a very difficult passage to
interpret. Who are the spirits in prison? Some suggest that they were
antediluvians, to whom Christ went in spirit when His body left the cross; some
suggest that Christ's spirit was in Noah when He himself preached to the
antediluvians. But these do not answer all the difficulties.
QUESTION THAT IS UNANSWERED
Others think He preached to the lost souls in Tartarus, to whom His soul went,
after He left the cross. But if Christ did go to the lost souls in hades or Tartarus
we would expect some results; but there is no such report — noevidence that any
good was accomplished. We are inclined to think that He preached to the spirits in
paradise, proclaiming the victory which He brought with him after His death.
Bearing the burden of a human soul redeemed, as He declared to the dying thief,
"Today thou shalt be with me in paradise." He proclaimed a message in triumph
to the souls in hades.
We have a good many texts that God will have all men to be saved; but all those
texts that express God's willingness to have all men to be saved is the same word
used in this, "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, how often would I have gathered you as a
hen gathereth her chickens, and ye would not." How oft would I have gathered!
There is the same word. This does not express God's purpose, but his desire to
gather the people. So all the texts of this character.
God declares in His Word that He has exhausted all salvation means in this life to
save them — done everything he could. He has given us His son Jesus Christ to
die upon the cross, to break our hearts and bring us into harmony with him. Is
there any world where God can appeal to men more than He is now, with blood
and tears? Is there anjrwhere where God's work can mean any more than it means
now? Is it possible for the preaching of the word to be any more clear than in this
TRUTH COMING FROM PULPITS
I could not imagine any angel declaring the truth more forcefully than it is being
proclaimed from pulpit and rostrum today. If the motive in men's hearts is not
strong enough here I cannot imagine it being stronger anywhere else. Man has no
right to ask for a probation after death. In this life all of us well know that we
have an opportunity and if we despise that opportunity we know that we have
forfeited our rights to any further chance. There is a magnificent chance for us all,
and if we despise that chance it seems to me we have no right to expect another.
Pastor Russell, on rising to reply, first explained that the initials, "V. D. M.," used
in announcements in connection with his name signified "Minister of the Word of
God" (Verbe Die Minister), expressed his pleasure in having recognized scholars
and a gentleman for an opponent, andacknowl edged the forcefulness of the latter's
presentation of his side of the question at issue. He urged, however, that well-
balanced minds should decide the matter upon a careful consideration of both
sides, and remember that the deciding standard had been agreed between the
contestants to be the Word of God alone — " What say the Scriptures?" He
Our brother declares that the Scriptures clearly teach that God has been doing all
in His power to do from the beginning of creation down to the present
time to save mankind. If we find that the Scriptures teach that it will be a great
disappointment to me, I assure you. I look back to the Bible itself, the only
reliable ancient history, and there find the statement that after God had created our
first parents perfect and in his own image, and after they had been tried in Eden
and had proved themselves disobedient and had come under the sentence of death,
there was a period of 1,656 years that ensued, and in that period, instead of the
world of mankind being saved, and instead of there being any evidence whatever
that our heavenly Father tried to save the world of mankind — the testimony of
Scriptures is to the contrary — thatat the end of 1,656 years the world was corrupt
before God and he brought the flood of water which blotted out that world.
If those people had all the probation and all the opportunity they will ever have,
then this place where they are going to be, the devil's picnic that our brother tells
about, will have a very large population. A good many millions are going there.
At the end of 1,656 years only Noah and seven of his family were found worthy
of salvation and being brought across the flood to be the starters of a new order of
things this side the cataclysm. Then we take the history this side the flood and
find that Noah and his family, eight persons in all, started out fairly well, fairly
good representatives of the Lord in the world, and it was only a little while
afterward that the earth was again corrupt, only a little while till they began to
build the tower of Babel, as if to say. We will see to it that if God sends another
flood it shall not drown us. They would build their own tower of salvation; and
God scattered them and divided their language.
The Apostle Paul, in the first chapter of his letter to the Romans, calls attention to
the fact that this prevalence of superstition and degradation throughout the world
is not because our heavenly Father created the poor African and Chinaman and
Indian in their present degradation, but that having created man perfect and in his
own image and likeness; when they knew God they did not glorify Him as God,
neither were they thankful, but became vain in their imagination and their foolish
mind was darkened; so that God "gave them over" — Helet them go. We see
where they went — we see what degradation there is throughout the world today.
PEOPLE BLINDED BY SATAN
The apostle accounts for it and goes on to show why so few hear the gospel of
Christ, saying: "The god of this world (Satan) hath blinded the minds of them that
believe not." (2 Cor. 4: 4) They are blinded, they cannot see — it is not possible
for them to see. Why is it that the poor heathen do not know God and do not
understand the plan of salvation? The apostle says Satan hath blinded their minds.
And all Christian people are glad to do what we can to remove that blindness, by
sending missionaries to not only heathen lands, but throughout our home land as
well. To what extent are we successful in removing this blindness, to make all
men see the height and depth and length and breadth of the love of God? To a
very small extent, and to a very small proportion of the people of this world.
Our brother seems to have the impression that these heathen that would not have
good to reign over them, and thus became heathen, would be saved in their
heathendom and ignorance and superstition. I understand him that some of these
are already in Paradise, without ever having heard of the only name given under
heaven or among men whereby we may be saved. I would like to know how they
got there? The apostle, after laying down the proposition that faith is necessary,
and no salvation without faith, says, "How shall they believe in Him of whom
they have not heard, and how shall they believe unless they hear, and how shall
they hear unless a preacher be sent?"
Therefore, we will follow the apostle and not our brother when we send
missionaries to help the heathen hear. There is no other condition of salvation
than faith in the Lord Jesus. If faith is necessary, that is a different proposition;
then the heathen are not saved. But suppose that those heathen are saved, and
suppose we should admit the salvation which our brother suggests, and which Dr.
Talmage also suggested, when he declared that he would not admit that the devils
get all. Dr. Talmage declared that one-half died in infancy and God got them; and
all the heathen that died God has got, and all the idiots God has taken in —
andour brother included the idiots in his suggestion as to the ones benefited by
Christ's death without necessity for faith in him.
WHERE DO INTELLIGENT PERSONS GO?
Now I want to know, if the heathen and idiots are in paradise, where are the
intelligent human beings who have been seeking to serve God with their best
efforts and through various experiences of testing, to get their heaven? (Loud
applause.) I do not think our dear brother would have this thought which he
advances — itwould not be reasonable — wereit not for the fact that he is obliged
to crowd down into the present life all the opportunity for salvation which his
theory requires; and his heart is too generous for him to assert that those who have
no opportunity to know Christ in the present time must go to a place of eternal
I admire the brother's generosity, but I do not think
it is at all like the Father's plan that because a man was born a heathen, or an idiot,
or died in infancy, therefore he must be saved. What is the meaning of those
words: "Straight is the gate and narrow is the way that leadeth unto life, and few
there be that find it?" If our brother's proposition is the end, how unfortunate are
you that you did not die in infancy; unfortunate are you that you were not a
heathen, and thus have been able to escape the responsibility of hearing the gospel
of Jesus Christ.
The Scriptures declare that the whole world lieth in the wicked one. Again we are
told that "Satan is the prince of this world," that he exercises a great and dominant
power over the world; he is the great power of evil; God has permitted this great
power. We must all be agreed that if God did not give Satan this permission he
could have no power. The scriptures teach that the time is coming when God will
alter matters, when Satan shall be bound for 1,000 years, and when Christ shall
take unto Himself His great power and reign. Our brother says he can see no
reason why the present are not the greatest opportunities, why there should be any
necessity for improving on them.
WHAT HE COULD DO WITH POWER
I can see why there is a necessity for improvement. I can. see where a vast
opportunity for improvement is evidenced, and I could improve upon the
conditions of the present day myself Give me one-tenth the power of the
Almighty, and I would shut up every brewery and distillery in the land; I would
close every saloon and place of evil, and I would see that the influence of Satan
was overthrown. (Applause) We see all the best people in the world trying to do
this, which we know our Heavenly Father could do at His word; which we loiow
He will do when the due time shall come, when Satan, the old serpent, the devil,
shall be bound for 1,000 years, that he may deceive the nations no more.
He has been confusing the minds of all the heathen, so that they do not recognize
him; and he has been blinding even the people of our own supposedly Christian
lands, so that they think of our God as a great and terrible monster. He has
beclouded the minds of God's dear children so that in the reading of His blessed
book they misinterpret the same — not intentionally, but misinterpret,
I want to call your attention to the place where the gospel had its beginning,
according to the scriptures. It did not begin in Eden. There was no need of a
gospel when our heavenly Father communicated with Father Adam. He gave him
a law; he was disobedient to the law and he was punished for the breaking of it,
but He did not give him any gospel. The word means good tidings, and God did
not tell our first parents about good tidings of salvation. The-nearest hint to a
suggestion on the subject was that some day "the seed of the woman should braise
the serpent's head."
STATEMENT WAS NEVER FULFILLED
That statement has never been fulfilled. All during the period from Adam to the
flood there is not a suggestion anywhere that the gospel was preached. On the
contrary, the apostle tells us that "the gospel was preached beforehand to
Abraham," the first who ever heard the gospel. He gave his message to Abraham,
and what was the message? "In thy seed shall all the families of the earth be
blessed." That is a comprehensive promise — theoath-bound promise, as the
Apostle Paul calls it in his letter to the Hebrews. God swore that it should be so,
that we might have strong consolation while waiting for the fulfillment of that
great statement of the divine purpose.
This statement made to Abraham has never been fulfilled; not a word of evidence
has been produced to such effect. It is impossible to produce such testimony,
because there is none such. On the contrary, according to the Scriptures, darkness
covers the earth and gross darkness the people. It is not true that the light of the
world is shining forth; that the great Redeemer who is to enlighten every man that
Cometh into the world has not yet begun that glorious work, else we would now
see the fulfillment of the gracious promise, "The knowledge of the Lord shall fill
the whole earth as the waters cover the sea."
"None shall say unto his neighbor. Know the Lord, for all shall know him, from
the least unto the greatest of them." The Lord's promise is, however, that in due
time the sun of righteousness shall arise with healing in his beams, and shall fiood
the earth with light and scatter the nighttime. (Great applause) That time is not yet
come; the night-darkness is not scattered. We know that there is still necessity, as
the prophet has depicted it, that we should recognize the word of God as a light to
our feet and a map to our pathway as we walk through the darkness of this world,
"until the day dawn, and the day star arise," as Peter puts it.
SUNLIGHT COMING AFTER DARKNESS
We can see the gross darkness upon the world, but He who has told us about it
has told us also about the great sunrise of righteousness, and that sunrise is the
millennial sun. It is Christ, the sun of righteousness, with healing in his beams,
which is to be the fulfillment of that promise to Abraham, "In thy seed shall all
the families of the earth be blessed."
The Lord is now blessing the church, but
they are not all the families of the earth by any means. The blessing was not
merely to be to the church, but as expressed by the Apostle John, "He is the
propitiation for our sins (the church's sins), and not for ours only, but also for the
sins of the whole world." The church is to be a part of the seed of Abraham which
is to accomplish the blessing upon the world. So the apostle declares in Gal. 3: 16,
29, saying of the seed, "which seed is Christ," and continuing declares, "If ye be
Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed and heirs according to the promise."
So we see that this first statement of the gospel has only gone so far in fulfillment
that God has been taking out the seed of Abraham during this gospel age. The
seed, which is the church, is not yet complete. We are not speaking of the
Presbyterian or Methodist or some other denomination; we are speaking of the
church of the Lord Jesus Christ, those who are trusting in the Lord for divine
mercy and who are united to him by a living faith, in full consecration to His
service. These are the members of the real church, the seed of Abraham, and this
gospel age is appointed to gather out all from the nations, kindreds and peoples
under heaven, that they, as the seed of Abraham, may be glorified, and as the
glorified seed may shine out in blessing for all the world of mankind.
COVENANT WITH PEOPLE OF ISRAEL
Subsequently to the giving of the promise to Abraham God made a covenant with
the people of Israel, and the apostle explains that the law of Moses was added to
the great covenant of blessing. This covenant constituted the people of Israel —
God'schosen ones — ina special sense, a peculiar people, under the Mosaic law
which they vainly strove to keep. The apostle tells us that it was impossible for
them to keep the law, for by the deeds of the law should no flesh' be justified in
God's sight. It was intended to teach that people their utter helplessness, and the
absolute necessity for a great mediator, Christ Jesus, to redeem them from sin and
enable them to approve themselves before God.
It did not save them from sin in any sense. In the meantime what about the
heathen nations around about? The declaration of Scripture is most positive. God
had no dealings with them whatever. Through the prophet Amos God declared to
the Jewish nation, "You only have I known of all the families of the earth." The
other nations were left out entirely. The Apostle Paul showed how distinctly they
were left out, when he said, addressing some who became Christians out of the
heathen nations, "Ye were strangers and foreigners, aliens from the
commonwealth of Israel, without God and without hope in the world" — thatis
the attitude of all heathen people. The only people who had any opportunity with
God up to the time of Christ was the nation of Israel, and that one nation was only
a typical people.
Their sacrifices could never take away sin. The apostle says they merely typified
the church which should later be the chosen people of God. The church has the
real sacrifice, the church is the real priesthood, it is the real peculiar people, it has
the real holy of holies, has the real justification, all of which were typified in the
various conditions of the Jewish nation. The point we desire to make is this: God
did not begin any work of salvation until this gospel age; the Jews who were the
nearest to salvation were only typical people. And so we read that" Moses was
faithful as a servant over all his house( the typical house, the servant house), but
Christ as a son over his own house, whose house are we, if we hold fast the
beginning of our confidence firm unto the end." Even the Jews were only
servants, and not until Christ came were any accepted as God's sons.
THE BEGINNING OF SALVATION
The words of the apostle prove that salvation began with Christ's first advent:
"How shall we escape if we neglect so great salvation, which at the first began to
be spoken by our Lord." It did not begin to be preached to Adam, nor to Noah,
nor to Moses, nor in any other day until, as the apostle says, it began to be
preached by our Lord, "And was confirmed unto ns by them that heard him."
It is not our suggestion that nobody is on trial today. It is not our suggestion that
everybody is going to have another chance. That is not the proposition we are
discussing. The proposition is whether there is anybody that needs a probation
after death. I am not saying that if it is true of you, as it was true of the apostles,
"Blessed are your eyes, for they see, and your ears for they hear," that you will
have another chance after death to take another glimpse and to hear further of
divine mercy, if you fail to use your privileges now.( Loud applause.)
But I am saying that those fifty thousand millions of the human race that have
gone down into the great prison house of death, where, as our brother quoted,
"There is neither wisdom, nor knowledge, nor device," those fifty thousand
millions who have no wisdom, devices nor knowledge in sheol, need some future
opportunity, or else they have not had a chance at all. Christ's sacrifice was of no
avail unless they are to have an opportunity to hear, because God's arrangement is
that "He that believeth shall be saved; he that believeth not shall be condemned."
There is no suggestion anywhere in the Scriptures that God has
made provision for salvation in blindness and ignorance and superstition. There
must be faith, and there must be knowledge preceding faith, or the Scriptures are
WHAT WILL BE NEEDED
To give the world the full opportunity which Christ purchased for them will
require an awakening from the dead — a bringing forth from that condition of
lack of wisdom, device and knowledge to a condition where they shall know, in
order that they may exercise faith and profit by the opportunities given to them in
the time when the knowledge of the Lord shall cover the whole earth. Under the
great sentence which God pronounced upon the first pair the entire race has been
in death, and the apostle makes the statement most forcefully when he declares,
"The wages of san is death;" and again, the prophet, "The soul that sinneth it shall
I do not care how people try to twist those words — they stand! The darkness of
the dark ages confused the minds of many regarding their meaning, and many of
us still have difficulty in getting the smoke out of our eyes, but death is the
sentence, and it is from death that the world must be awakened in order to know
the privileges of divine grace — not a place of conscious existence, where the
good are divided into 'one compartment and the evil into another. The one word
"sheol" in the Hebrew and "hades" in the Greek describes the habitation of both
good and wicked dead, and there is no Scripture which intimates that there is any
distinction between the condition of either class while they are in the tomb. We
had not anticipated that the class of texts produced by our brother would be made
use of in discussing the present proposition — they properly belong to later
subjects, and we shall reply to them fully when they come up again in their proper
ANGELS IN CONTROL OF THE WORLD
What has God been doing during the time he has been waiting for the fulfillment
of his plan for blessing the world? It would afford me pleasure, if there were time,
to show that during the dispensation before the flood God left the control of the
world in the hands of angels, and that the angels were misled, were seduced by
the sin among mankind, so that they "kept not their first estate," they fell from
their original pure condition, and through their sin they became the spirits in
prison of whom Peter speaks — notmen in prison, not men who have gone down
into sheol, that Christ preached to, but the spirit beings, the angels, who fell from
the original state of obedience, and have been kept in prison until Christ comes.
These, prior to their disobedience, were given the opportunity to see to what
extent they could help mankind. On the contrary, sin proved contagious, and they
were misled, and their condemnation to chains of darkness resulted. Christ, as the
real succorer of mankind, preached to them most effectively in his faithful
obedience to the Father, in contrast to their disobedient course.
If the whole world up to the time of the gospel dispensation was practically left
outside of God's plan of salvation, as the Bible history tells us, and if the Jews
only had any favor, and that was merely a law which was a shadow of good things
to come, and not the substance, what has been going on during this gospel age?
We answer, the selection of the seed of Abraham, which is to bless the world.
Meantime the world is getting a general lesson on every subject, a general
experience in all the trials and difficulties of life, teaching mankind something
regarding the extremely undesirable results of sin, but the particular dealing of
God is with his people, the little flock who are being selected for the blessing of
the world in the future.
THE GLORIOUS KINGDOM CLASS
This is election, as the scriptures teach the doctrine of election; not the selection
of a few and the damnation of the remainder, but the selection of a little flock for
the blessing of the remainder of the world, that they might constitute, with Christ,
the members of a glorious kingdom class, that millennial kingdom for which we
pray, as taught by our Lord, "Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it
is done in heaven." The will of God is not done yet, because the hour has not yet
come. The clock of the universe has not struck for the bringing of blessings to all
the families of the earth.
Our brother calls attention to the parable of the wheat and the tares, and that the
end of the age would be a time of separation. We agree to all that is written. We
would like to have you notice that all these parables relate to the kingdom of
heaven; the kingdom of heaven is likened to thus and so. The church in the
present time is thus likened, in its preparatory condition, its embryotic condition.
When the church shall all be selected then it will be the church in glory, bride and
bridegroom joined together for the blessing of the world.
But now look at the parable. The wheat are the children of the kingdom. Are
there many? No, none would say so. Narrow is the way that leadeth unto life, and
few there be that fmd it. Only those are the wheat, the children of the kingdom,
and these are the only ones referred to in the parable except as the tares come in.
Now in this wheatfield the enemy sowed tares; he
brought in a lot of people not in the consecrated class at all, a lot of people who
associate themselves with the Lord's true people as imitation wheat — notall bad
people, but deceived, not Christians, and really hypocritical, in that they are
assuming a false position in connection with the Lord's people.
This condition has been permitted of God to continue since it began, after the
apostles fell asleep in death. The harvest is the end of the world — I do not agree
with our brother that aion means the end of all things in the universe. If you will
take your Greek-English concordance you will readily fmd every place where the
word aion occurs; you will fmd that the nearest English translation would be age.
We have in the Scriptures "aions of aions," and if our brother's position were
correct there could not be ages of ages. The end of the age will bring a
manifestation of who are true Christians, who are real, consecrated followers of
God and who have been hypocritically attaching themselves to these without real
zeal and consecration.
In further discussion we think we shall be able to show that our Heavenly Father
will have a grander outcome in his plan than that which our brother has suggested.
"My word that goeth forth out of my mouth shall not return unto me void; but it
shall accomplish that which I please, and prosper in the thing whereunto I sent it."
If God sent his word to convert the world during this gospel age, then the world
would have been converted.
The fact that it is not converted is a proof that God has sent His word for some
other purpose. By and by, when that word shall have gathered into the gamer the
faithful wheat class, "Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the
kingdom of the Father," for the scattering of the night, the scattering of darkness
and superstition and evil that now enshroud this world. (Prolonged applause)
Dr. Eaton then arose and began as follows:
SCRIPTURE AND CRAZY-QUILTS
This is the greatest mix-up of Scriptural quotations I have ever heard. If one
wants to make a snatch here and another snatch there into a crazy quilt, and call
that Scripture, it is all right — but it is not Scripture. In that way one can prove
that the best thing for a man to do is to hang himself at once.
"Judas went out and hanged himself — Whatsoeverthy hand fmdeth to do, do it
with thy might — What thou doest, do quickly." (Laughter and applause)
You can teach anything that way. In all the ages of the world God has shown his
mercy to men. He has told us that the angels failed in their attempt. If the words
spoken by angels was steadfast, and every transgression and disobedience
received a just reward, how shall we escape? (Applause) In all ages God has
given men opportunity. Our first parents had their chance. It was simply a
question of obedient faith in God. He tells us that nobody is saved except those
who have had an opportunity for believing in Christ.
That is a strange thing. What about Abel, Abraham and Noah?
In all ages salvation has been provided. Paul tells us in the first chapter of
Romans of the heathen world. "They are simply without excuse." If without
excuse they have had a chance. There is no need of my making any excuse for
them, or my brother either. Moreover, the standard of salvation has been in all
ages according to the condition of each. I grant Adam had not all the knowledge
we have. There is an evolution in progress, and the conditions and opportunities
When Cornelius was converted, and the council was called at Jerusalem to
discuss the case, the only conditions which were prescribed to the Gentiles who
became converts were that they "should abstain from things strangled, and from
fornication and from blood." Was that a very high standardto set for Christian
living? None of us today would think it so, but it was the condition appropriate to
WAS A HEATHEN BUT LOVED GOD
Cornelius was a heathen, but he was a lover of God, and God heard his prayers
and blessed him, and sent Peter to convey to him the privileges of Christianity.
What would have become of Cornelius if Peter had not taken the message God
was sending through him? Would he have been lost? Assuredly not.
What is the use of saying we must know the complete purpose of God to be
saved? In all ages the man who has had faith in God is saved. And by faith I mean
that we believe and love and obey God. That is what the apostle says when he
says "Without faith it is impossible to please God."
God can save every heathen on the face of this earth on that basis. He knows
whether they have the willing spirit or not. It is not necessary that one shall know
the will of the Lord Jesus in every particular; but it is necessary that some test
shall manifest the obedience of the individual. "To obey is better than sacrifice."
That has made it possible for the entire human race who have reached years of
accountability to fulfill the will of God.
Why do we send missionaries to heathendom? Because Jesus Christ said so. That
is all I know about, and that is all anybody knows about it. I am glad that our
brother made this noble confession and concession, that if we in Allegheny do not
profit by our opportunities we shall not have any future
opportunity. If any of you think that this next chance for a thousand years after
Christ comes is to be your portion, you will miss it. My brother seems to think
that the full and complete revelation of God must be made in order to give the
world a fair chance, and that is to be in the millennium; but he has fixed the
funniest kind of millennium I ever heard of
The only millennium in the Scriptures is in the 20th chapter of Revelation, and
merely tells of the reign of eminent saints and martyrs, and the remaining in death
of all the rest of mankind. His idea of a millennium, with saints and sinners, joy
and despair, with a writhing, wriggling mass of two hundred and fifty thousand
millions on earth, will be a peculiar one indeed. It is not taught in the Scriptures,
and I absolutely doubt the whole presentation of a millennium. (Loud applause)
This whole millennium nonsense, I think, is a piece of foolishness we would best
dismiss first as last. It is not probation at all; devil chained, sin gone, all
temptation removed, a picnic excursion all 'round indeed it will be. What balmy
breezes will waft over everybody when such a condition is attained by the world,
according to our brother's picture! (Prolonged applause)
HAS A CLINCHER HE IS HOLDING BACK
Pastor Russell concluded the debate for the day in the following manner:
When we come to that topic we shall have something to say about the
millennium that will perhaps not be so easy to dispose of It will come in its
appropriate time. I want now to call your attention to some of his own texts of
Scriptures. Our brother tells us practically that we would not need a savior at all.
Everybody got saved, if the Lord Jesus Christ never came into the world, and had
never died, and though it is declared that there is no salvation outside of him. I
say, and the Scriptures declare, that salvation is only attainable through Jesus
Christ the Redeemer. What ever anybody may get outside of him, they cannot get
salvation. Ignorance never saved any man, and it never will.
It is a very popular thought to consider the fatherhood of God and the
brotherhood of man, and everybody sailing into heaven of some kind, except the
worst kind of criminals; but that is far from the scriptural idea. The scriptures lay
down an explicit statement as to the conditions of acceptance with God, and these
are all based upon faith in Jesus Christ Himself as the only way to salvation and
eternal happiness. The evolution theory suggests that we are getting along
amazingly well, that we started out as monkeys, or some lower form of existence,
and if God will only keep his hands off we will yet become gods.
The scripture says there was a fall, and that sin brought death, and that Christ
died for our flus, and that faith in Him and in His blood is the only condition of
reconciliation with God — "Neither is their salvation in any other." We want to
stick to the word of God. We agree that Cornelius was a good man; he built a
synagogue; he showed his good feeling toward God, but was he a Jew? No. Then
he was a stranger, an alien, a foreigner, without God, having no hope, according
to the apostle, no matter how good he was. Why then, did God send Peter?
Because the appropriate time had come. Not until after Christ had died, not until
after God's covenant with Israel had come to an end could a Gentile be received
as such into divine favor.
PROMISES MADE TO THE JEWS
Seventy symbolical weeks of favor had been promised to the Jews-according to
Daniel's prophecy (Daniel 9); in the middle of the last week (of seven years)
Messiah was to be cut off, leaving three and a half years of favor still remaining
to the Jews, during which the Lord instructed the apostles not to go outside of
Judea; but immediately at the close of that period favor could go to the nations
about, and Cornelius, as a faithful and earnest seeker after God, was favored of
the Lord with the first privileges as a Gentile.
And what was the message God gave him? "Send unto Peter and when he shall
come he shall tell thee words, whereby thou and thy house shall be saved!" He
was not saved without these words! (Loud applause) And when Peter came he
preached Christ and Him crucified. He did not shake hands with Cornelius and
say, "How are you Cornelius? You have been saved all this time and didn't know
it!" (Laughter and applause) Cornelius had to believe what everybody must
believe in order to become a Christian, that Jesus Christ died for his sins, and rose
again for his justification, because there is no other name given under heaven
whereby we may be saved.
The brother quoted another text. "God will have all men to be saved," but he
didn't give the remainder of the statement — " and to come to a knowledge of the
truth." How will the heathen come to a knowledge of the truth? They cannot come
to it in sheol, where there is neither 'wisdom, device nor knowledge of the truth,
which shall be presented to them when they have been awakened from their
sleeping condition in sheol, according to the words of the Lord, "The hour is
coming when all that are in the grave shall hear the voice of the Son of Man and
come forth — " — come
forth to have testified to them that Christ died for them, because by that time the
seed of Abraham will be completed and the blessing of the Lord shall come upon
the whole earth.
Our brother has sneered at the millennial age, but we are on the side of the
prophets, and they declare that the time is coming when the knowledge of the
Lord shall fill the whole earth as the waters cover the great deep, and none shall
need say unto his neighbor, know the Lord, for all shall know Him, from the least
unto the greatest, saith the Lord. (Loud applause)
ARE THE DEAD REALLY DEAD?
Debate on the Proposition thatthe Soul is then Unconscious
AWAITING JUDGMENTIMMENSE AUDIENCE LISTENS TO THE REV.
DR. E.L.EATON AND PASTOR C.T.RUSSELL MANY COMPELLED
REPRINTED FROM THE GAZETTE OF OCTOBER 21
The second of a series of debates between the Rev. E. L. Eaton and Pastor C. T.
Russell was held last night in Carnegie music hall, Allegheny. The big hall was
crowded. The gallery was full, all the seats in the body of the auditorium were
occupied, and in the rear aisle more than 100 persons were standing. The big
audience remained until the last. The Rev. Dr. Henry D. Lindsay, pastor of the
North Presbyterian church, presided over the meeting.
The topic debated was the proposition: "The scriptures clearly teach that the souls
of the dead are unconscious while their bodies are in the grave." Mr. Russell took
the affirmative side. Dr. Eaton denied the proposition. Each speaker spoke 50
minutes in turn and then each had 10 minutes for reply to the other.
The third of the debates will be held tomorrow evening, when this proposition
will be debated: "The scriptures teach that all of the saved will become spirit
beings and after the general judgment will enter heaven." Dr. Eaton will take the
affirmative side and Mr. Russell the negative.
Last night's debate opened at 8 o'clock, Dr. Lindsay calling the meeting to order
and saying a few words in explanation. Having the affirmative Mr. Russell led off
FORMING CHARACTER AFTER DEATH
Truth is stranger than fiction, is an old adage, but, nevertheless, a true one. We
expect to show you this evening that the truth on the subject under discussion was
lost sight of during the "Dark Ages," and that fiction has taken the place of truth
in the minds of the people. I ask you, therefore, to have patience while you hear
the testimony of the Scriptures, and that we remember that there is no one in this
world competent to give a decision on this subject unless our heavenly Father has
given the decision in the Scriptures.
The fiction is that which is entirely unsupported by the word of God, but which is
generally recognized amongst Christian people in respect to the condition of
mankind in death. The general view is that the moment of death is the turning
point, and that all mankind at death either pass into a kind of awful misery, such
as our brother described on Sunday, when a drop of water would be a tremendous
blessing, and that a comparatively small number are fit, have characters formed,
and are fit to be in the presence of God and the holy angels. That they are a little
flock, and that the great mass of mankind, not having formed a character which
God could approve, are unworthy and unready to enter into the glorious things of
God, is, I think, an almost indisputable proposition. We are not to suppose for a
moment that heaven is a great school in which people shall piece out the
information and experiences of this present life, and there form character; but, on
the contrary, there shall "enter into it nothing that defileth" or that would be
imperfect in any sense, and, hence, according to our friends's consideration, only
a little flock shall get to glory and all the remainder of mankind, hundreds of
thousands and millions, are surely on the way to an eternity of trouble. Our
Catholic friends help out the
matter a little by saying there will be a purgatory condition, and that after
spending thousands of years there, they will be something better, as they make
BAD OUTLOOK FOR A MAJORITY
Dr. Eaton suggested to us Sunday afternoon that those going to their future
condition at death shall have no chance of change after they get there. The whole
matter is settled; whoever is fit to go to the right side of the gulf stays there, and
whoever goes to the wrong side never gets farther. According to the great
majority of Christians the most of mankind are pretty sure to go to the bad place,
for the most of them have never even heard the only name given amongst men
whereby they must be saved. Brother Eaton tells us they are prepared to go there,
even if they have never heard the name of Jesus. That is a very different gospel
than I ever heard, but I think it is to be credited to the brother's love of mankind,
in that he was unwilling to think of the majority of the world suffering torture,
even though they didn't know Christ, and he must get them into a good place
without the help of the Redeemer. I cannot agree with his head, but I believe he
has a good heart. (Applause)
On the side of the truth, the Scriptures teach that the whole world of mankind
when they die are dead. It seems a strange proposition to have to make to an
intelligent audience, that when a man dies he is dead; but, nevertheless, it is
necessary to show this, because the majority of people, under the dominion of
tradition from the dark ages, have come to the conclusion that when a man dies he
is more alive than he ever was. (Laughter) The Scriptures teach that he is dead,
and only when he gets a resurrection will he have reached a life condition. The
resurrection and the atonement for sin go hand in hand in the Scriptures-they are
the two most important themes of the Bible! The atonement, as the means of
release from sin by the death of Christ, and the resurrection as the time when the
release shall be accomplished by the power of the Redeemer.
NO WISDOM IN THE GRAVE
We wish to show that it is the divine plan and teaching of the Lord's word, that
all go to sheol; the good and the bad; all have been redeemed from sheol, and all
shall return from it. "As by one man's disobedience sin entered into the world," so
through the death of Jesus Christ life and redemption have been found. As all go
into sheol, and as all have been redeemed by the sacrifice of Christ from sheol, so
all are in due time to be called forth from sheol. Sheol is not a place of life and
activity. Our dear brother quoted a text on Sunday from Ecclesiastes in which it is
distinctly declared that there is neither wisdom, device nor knowledge in the
grave, whither thou goest. The word "grave" is "sheol," as our brother then
declared. If there is no wisdom in the grave, the good cannot know anything there;
likewise the wicked cannot know anything; if no knowledge is there, they cannot
enjoy it, and if there is no device there, they cannot do anything. There is no pain
nor trouble nor torment there.
Our proposition that death is death, and that our dear ones, when they pass from
us, are really dead, that they are neither alive with the angels nor with demons in a
place of despair, is the teaching of the Scripture. It will not do for us to say that
we prefer this or that arrangement of this matter; we must accept the Scriptural
teaching as to God's plan, and whether it is agreeable to our minds or not, it is our
duty to realize that God will not alter his plan one iota for our preference.
REASON FOR BEING GLAD
If we might feel a preference that our friends were in glory immediately at death,
think, on the other hand, that there is good reason for being glad that those who
we know are wicked and not fit for blissful conditions are not suffering the pains
of everlasting torture as soon as they go out from this life; and we must admit that
most of our friends and relatives have died out of Christ, have not lived up to that
only standard of Scriptures which could gain for them an entrance into heavenly
conditions — " sanctified, and meet for the Master's use."
Since the Master exhorted that his disciples should be "sanctified through Thy
truth; Thy word is truth," all of us should be studious to obey the truth,
remembering the other statement of the Scriptures, "He that loveth or maketh a
lie" is not of the Lord.
I call your attention to the fact that all Christian people are practically agreed
respecting original sin, that .it is taught in the Scriptures, that it is taught by the
Apostle Paul, in Romans 5: 12, "By one man's disobedience sin entered into the
world, and death by sin." He does not say by one man's disobedience sin entered
into the world, and eternal torment as the result of sin; but he does say death is the
result of sin. The great error was made in the dark ages, the time when they
burned each other, and gouged out each other's eyes saying, "It is better to give
them a little torment now, to save them from falling into God's hands after a
while, and having them endure an endless torture of a far worse kind.
The record in Genesis is that God created our first
parents in his own image and likeness, and placed them upon trial for life. He
gave them a command, and made a test to them of obedience, not whether they
would commit murder or villainy, but whether they would be obedient to him,
that they might live. If they would disobey him they should die!
OUR FIRST PARENTS DISOBEYED
They disobeyed — weare not excusing them; God justly put upon them the
penalty of their sin. But the question is, what was the penalty for sin? Was it any
kind of torment? No, the Scriptures declare most explicitly, "The wages of sin is
death," not torment at all. We read the account in Genesis 2, concerning the
command given to Adam. If God intended that his child should go to eternal
torment on account of that act of disobedience, why did he not say so? Could a
sane man give an excuse for an Almighty, heavenly. Father dealing with his child
in paradise, and deceiving him into thinking that the penalty was something else
than what he really intended, if he intended on account of that sin to turn him over
to devils, to roast and boil and burn him to all eternity? Is there anything of that
kind in the record? I have not seen it.
Theologians have taken this wrong view of the matter from the expression "in the
day," as it occurs here, and they weave various kinds of interpretations about the
day mentioned; but we find it very plain when we read Peter's explanation, "A day
with the Lord is as a thousand years." Here is the statement of the Lord in Genesis
to Adam that he should die within a day, and he did die within the thousand-year
day of the Lord's reckoning.
After the sin the Lord pronounced the sentence upon the guilty pair, a sentence
which extended to every member of their race: "Dust thou art, and unto dust shalt
thou return." But does it not say something else about that in the Scriptures? Does
it not say that they would not die? Yes, Satan appeared to Eve, and guaranteed,
"Ye shall not surely die," and as a matter of fact do we not see that the whole
world is believing Satan, that when a man dies he will be more alive than ever,
and disbelieving God's statement, that when a man dies he is truly dead.
THE SENTENCE OF DEATH
We read of the curse all through the Scriptures. What does it mean? It means this
sentence of death which came by disobedience, on account of which the whole
human family is groaning and travailing in pain together, as declared by the
apostle in Rom. 8: 17-23-they are suffering the effects of the curse, mentally,
morally and physically, all leading to the ultimate end, death itself "The soul that
sinneth it shall die," and "the wages of sin is death," are the emphatic scriptural
Where is the hope? In the statement, "God so loved the world that He gave His
only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish" — here
referring again to the terms of the sentence — not eternal torment, but perishing,
death — " but have everlasting life." The sentence of perishing was eternal, were it
not for the fact that God provided a redemption through Jesus Christ, who is
represented in the Scriptures as "the Lamb slain" (taking the place in death of the
condemned race) "from the foundation of the world."
The release from this death condition is to come through a resurrection of the
dead. There could not be a resurrection of the dead if there is nobody dead. It is
only those who are dead who have part in the resurrection of the dead. This is
what the Scriptures call to our attention as the good tidings of salvation,
deliverance from the penalty upon us of eternal death. The whole stress lies upon
the work of Jesus Christ; if there had been no sacrifice for sins then the sentence
would have remained, the penalty or curse would have everlastingly continued.
So the apostle suggests that "He is the propitiation for our (the church's) sins, and
not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world." How many does that
leave out in this great salvation, which began to be spoken by our Lord?
(Applause) It was never spoken before; there never was a hope in the resurrection
set forth in a definite way, because the ransom price had not been paid previously.
The most that could be done was to give a suggestive hope, as the Lord did to
Abraham, "In thy seed (when your seed shall come) all the families of the earth
shall be blessed."
THOUGH LIVING, WE ARE DYING
We speak of "being saved," but only in the reckoned sense. Actually we are still
subject to the pains, distresses and difficulties incident to the penalty of death; but
those who are trusting in the Lord are accounted as saved from the death penalty,
and are looking for the blessing of the salvation "which shall be revealed in us ....
in due time — inthe resurrection. We have death working in us actually, but the
life through Christ, by faith, by trust in the life-giver.
If the penalty of sin had been eternal torment then would our dear Redeemer have
gone to that condition in order to be our ransom price, if He would suffer in our
stead. But the Scriptures declare, "Christ died for our sins, and rose again for our
justification." In the present time only a small class have ever come to an
opportunity to know of the life giver; very few, and
those only since the first advent have ever heard the name of the Lord Jesus.
God's purpose is that in due time there may come forth, for God's will is that all
may be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth." Not saved with eternal
salvation, but saved from this destruction in death, which Christ redeemed them
from with His own death. They are saved in the sense that they will come forth
from the tomb and have the opportunity of accepting the only name whereby we
must be saved.
I agree with my brother Eaton entirely that all the dead go to sheol, but this is a
word very little understood amongst people except Hebrew scholars. The Hebrew
word stands for "the hidden state." In the old Testament Scriptures, the authorized
version, the word sheol is 31 times rendered hell; the same word sheol is 31 times
rendered grave; in other words, the grave is hell, and hell is the grave. It is a pretty
dark place, damp, cold and lonely, which is sometimes pictured to us as so hot!
Jacob, speaking about his son. Gen. 37: 35, says, "I will go down into the grave to
my son mourning" — otherwise translated. "I will go down into hell to my son
THE APPEAL OF JOB
And again, "O, that thou wouldst hide me in the grave" — the translators might
just as well have translated it hell; but it didn't refer to the theological hell; Job
was suffering with his boils and disasters, and was longing for release; then he
called to God to hide him in the grave; "Then thou shalt call and I will answer
thee, for thou shalt have desire unto the works of thy hands." He was going down
to hell, and yet he knew that in due time God would answer him and bring him
forth — when? In the resurrection.
"In the grave (sheol) who shall give thee thanks?" David evidently didn't know
anything about a compartment in hell where he would sing praises to God. Psalm
16: 10, "Thou wilt not leave my soul in hell (sheol)" — Christ'ssoul was not left
in the grave, and so Peter applies it in the Book of Acts, stating that it was not
David speaking of himself, but being a prophet, he spoke of Christ. God raised
him from the dead after he was three days in the grave. Psalm 18: 5. Psalm 31: 17.
"Let them be silent in the grave" — insheol. Then there will be no cursing of God
and blaspheming and shouting at all! Psalm 49: 15, "Like sheep they are laid in
the grave" — insheol — " their beauty shall consume in the grave" — insheol —
" death shall feed upon them." When we understand that sheol is a part of the
same sentence of death that came upon all, and that David here desired that God
would raise him up out of the power of it, by a resurrection from sheol, we get the
scriptural thought in harmony with the entire word of God. Again, "Whatsoever
thy hand fmdeth to do, do it with thy might, for there is neither wisdom, device
nor knowledge in the grave whither thou goest." Isaiah 38: 10, "I shall go to the
gates of the grave. The grave cannot praise thee as I do this day."
THE PRAYER OF HEZEKIAH
This occurs in Hezekiah's prayer, when the prophet told him he was to die. He did
not think it was a good place to go to, and God did not inform him of a
misconception regarding sheol, by assuring him that sheol was a desirable, fit and
proper condition, and a place of bliss and happiness; but God answered
Hezekiah's prayer and gave him 15 more years of life in which to praise God,
knowing that that could not be done in sheol. Psalm 6: 5. "In death there is no
remembrance of thee; in the grave who shall give thee thanks?" Nobody.
There must be a resurrection before they can give God thanks. "Wilt thou show
wonders to the dead? Shall the dead praise thee? Shall the loving kindness be
declared in the grave, or thy faithfulness in destruction? Shall wonders be known
in the dark and thy righteousness in the land of forgetfulness?" The grave is the
land of forgetfulness. Psalm 146: 4, "His breath goeth forth; he returneth to his
earth; in that very day his thoughts perish." How much can we think about then?
Ecc. 9: 5, "The living know that they shall die, but the dead know not anything."
Ecc. 9: 10, 12: 7; Isaiah 38: 18; Deut. 31: 16.
Then a few texts in which this matter is spoken of as a sleep. Deut. 31: 16; 1
Kings 2: 10, 11: 43; 2 Chron. 12: 16; 2 Chron. 21: 1. Some of these men were
good, and some bad, but they all went to sleep when they died. Matt. 9: 24, "The
maid is not dead but sleepeth." John 11: 11, "Our friend Lazarus sleepeth, but I go
that I may awake him out of sleep." 1 Thess. 9: 13, "I would not have you
ignorant concerning them which are asleep." "Them which sleep also in Jesus will
God bring from the dead by Him." Psalm 17: 15; Dan. 12: 2. Of David it is
declared, "He is not ascended into heaven, but his sepulchre is with us unto this
day." He is still asleep; he will be satisfied when he awakes in the morning. Job
14: 14, "All the days of my appointed time shall I wait until my change come;
thou wilt call and I will answer; and thou shall have respect unto the work of thy
hands." In the resurrection morning the Lord will call Job and all others from their
sleeping condition, in sheol, in the tomb, in their present state of oblivion.
DR. EATON'S REPLY
Dr. Eaton, in denying the propostion, said:
Our friend Russell has made an excellent speech, and he has done exceedingly
well. It is surprising how much there is on both sides of this proposition, and you
have to decide it according to the best evidence we have. This subject in the main
has been thoroughly well treated, and I have been impressed with the case as he
has stated it. I will point out a few errors, however, as we proceed.
In the first place, these Old Testament Scriptures are somewhat obscure. The men
themselves did not have a very clear understanding concerning the matter. We
have had a very full array of Old Testament texts, but we cannot rest the case
entirely on any class of statements, for we shall find texts on both sides. We must
realize that revelation is progressive and growing and evolving, and the New
Testament, the last word that God has had to say to men, is very much more
distinct than the first. There is a good deal of indistinctness about the early
addresses, but they grow clearer as time advances. So we have to interpret the old
by the new. The matter of sleep: I grant that death is often spoken of in that way,
but only in figurative sense. We often speak of death as a sleep, but did you ever
hear anyone speak of the sleep of death? I never did. All poetical minds tried to
represent the harsh and severe things of death by the poetical term sleep. A
precious friend died after a long sickness and I telegraphed to a friend far away,
"Mary fell asleep at midnight," but I did not believe in soul sleeping, and I didn't
believe she was asleep. Everybody uses that expression. Jesus said to the
disciples, "Lazarus is sleeping, and I go to awake him out of sleep." When they
showed a misunderstanding he said plainly, literally, "Lazarus is dead," he was
dead — he was not asleep. When Jesus wanted to explain a thing he dropped the
figure and spoke in plain terms; and that is all there is of it.
CREATION OF THE SOUL
When God made Adam He formed his body of the dust of the earth; that was his
body, his animal body, which could not continue forever alive, unless God
specially intervened, through the sacramental use of the tree of life, or some other
way. He also breathed into his nostrils the breath of life or lives, and man became
a living soul. That soul is the thing created in God's likeness and image, and the
likeness consists of the qualities or elements of that soul, not the body. That
likeness consists of the intellect, sensibility and will, as all psychologists today
agree, that the human soul is thus composed, possessing the power to decide,
choose and act. In that respect a soul is like God. We can think God's thoughts,
because he gave us a thinker, a soul, to do it with; hence, this thinker is in His
likeness, and this thinker is immortal; immortal in this sense only, that it was
made to live. It is never called immortal and there is no such expression in the
Scriptures as "immortal soul" but the expression "a living soul" does occur
frequently — I mean a soul that is made to live until something kills it and
prevents its further existence.
When that first soul was created and sinned, the penalty given was death. Death
to the body — death to the soul also; physical death and moral death.
Annihilation? Extinction? No. Christ said to the Jews, "Let the dead bury their
dead." What did he mean? Let those who are morally dead bury those who are
physically dead. If he did not mean that, what did he mean? Death of the body is
only one element of the sentence; physical, animal death is one element; the
second element is the death of the soul, namely, moral death, depravity. "Awake
thou that sleepest, and Christ shall give thee life." What sort of death are you to
rise from? Moral death; the curse that came upon all men. There is another kind of
death, eternal death. "The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life."
Over against eternal life stands death, eternal death — whatever that may mean.
The one is the antithesis of the other.
THE THEORY OF PURGATORY
Now we will talk a little about the intermediate state. That is the state of
conscious existence between death and the resurrection for the entire human race,
in sheol, in the Old Testament, and hades of the New Testament. The reformers
rejected the doctrine of the intermediate state, because they feared it would bring
in the doctrine of purgatory and future probation. I do not teach that it is a state of
probation at all, or of purgatory. The Catholic doctrine of purgatory is based upon
this, that Christ did not die for the sins of all men — thathe paid the penalty for
the great sins, the mortal sins, and that to the church is left the work of providing
satisfaction for the venial small sins. It is not in the Scriptures at all. We are saved
through Jesus Christ from all things from which we could not be justified by the
law of Moses.
Our diagram show the features illustrating the intermediate state; these diagrams
are a good thing to help the eye. Here a dark wedge begins immediately after
infancy and increasingly separates those inclined toward righteousness and those
inclined toward evil, the saints from sinners. It is only a speck at the beginning,
but is wide and deep at the end of life, and life ends every prospect of altering the
is a good deal of inspiration in this map — Edisonsaid inspiration consisted of 2
per cent inspiration and 98 per cent perspiration.
The old King James version of the Bible, which translates sheol 65 times and
translates it every time, never transliterates it, 3 1 times hell, 3 1 times grave and
three times pit, every time wrongly. The revised version does a little better; but
the American revision never translates sheol once nor hades once, but uses
common sense and transliterates. Sheol is an English word, just as Jehovah, or
Hallelujah, and hades is an English word similarly. Everybody should know what
these words mean. They do not mean heaven, because the Hebrew word for
heaven, chayin, is used 720 times in the Old Testament quite independently. It
never means grave; it has no physical idea attached to it. Qeber is the word used
for grave. It means just what it says, the place and state into which the entire
human race go when they die; not heaven, not hell, but sheol. The Hebrews did
not know what that state was.
ANOTHER TRANSLATION OF SHEOL
Our brother gives a good many texts which give an obscure idea of their
meaning, but there are a few texts which show what it does mean clearly. The
Greek version of the Old Testament, the Septuagint, prepared for the Greeks by
learned Hebrew-Greek scholars three centuries before Christ, almost always used
the word hades in translating sheol in the Greek, and hades means the place where
people go when they die. You cannot get away from that. (Loud applause) I might
quote a lot of texts which make that very clear. If it was the grave, why didn't the
Hebrews translate it with that word when making their Greek translation?
"I will go down to sheol to my son mourning." Old Jacob had just been told his
son had been eaten up with wild beasts, and he believed it. In other words, this
was a grief which he said would kill him, and he would go down to his son, he
would die of grief, and he would meet his son. The son's body was in the stomach
of a lion. (Laughter) Did he expect to crawl into the stomach of a lion to meet his
son? He thought there was some conscious state of existence where he would go
to meet his son.
"Like a flock they are laid in the grave." That translation is simply awful! A flock
of sheep laid in the gravel A poetical Hebrew writing such a thing as that!
(Laughter) Read the revised version: "Like a flock of sheep they are appointed to
sheol" — everybody. Like a flock of sheep, excited, and following their leader over
the highest corner of the fence, they are rushing to sheol.
"Whatsoever thy hand fmdeth to do with thy might, for there is neither wisdom,
device nor knowledge in the grave." Does that mean you will go to sleep? Well
what motive have you to do with your might if that is true? The idea is that
whatsoever thy hand fmdeth to do to win the favor of God do it with your might,
for you cannot do it in sheol. To read it as in the authorized version is simply a
delusion. I have a right to manufacture Scripture in this sense, upon the authority
of the Apostles Peter and Paul. Peter said: "He that prophesieth must prophesy
according to the analogia of faith." You cannot take Scriptures and read them
against the whole word of God. Peter says: "No prophecy is of any private
interpretation." The word of God teaches that there is no chance to be saved in
sheol, therefore do the best you can in this life, and do it at once.
SCRIPTURAL REFERENCES TO HELL
Psalm 55: 15: "Let them go down alive into sheol." Our brother says they always
died. "The wicked shall be turned into sheol, and all the nations that forget God."
That is not a very determinative text, however, it might do on either side. "If I
make my bed in hell, lo, thou art there; there shall thy hand lead me." God is
everjrwhere, and all conscious beings could go to Him." Jonah's nautical
experience would be in harmony with this. He found God in the uttermost part of
the sea. "Hell from beneath is moved for thee, to meet thee at thy coming." This is
the picture of the great jamb ouree in hell, the taunting, laughing devils greeted
him with their derisions. A scene like that in the grave? That is a great place to
look for it. O, my brother, you will have to give it up.
The dark side of sheol: Tartarus, the lower sheol. "Out of the belly of hell cried I,
and thou heardest my voice." I maintain that Jonah was dead, and although I
could not prove it, unless this Scripture proves it, I think he went into the sea and
sank there, died and went to sheol, and after an interview with Jehovah received
inspiration to go to Nineveh. He was not unconscious. He was more alive than he
ever was. "The waters compassed me about. Weeds were wrapped about my
head." This is a reference to his lying at the bottom of the sea. The Hebrews held
the idea of sheol vaguely, indistinctly, so that we cannot get it clearly from the old
Testament. It is very doubtful if you could find immortality in the old Testament.
But we have no difficulty when we get to the new.
When sheol means hell it is always accompanied by a modifying word, "Hell
from beneath is moved." "Thou deliverest my soul from the lowest hell." "Her
guests are in the depths of hell."
NOT AN ETERNAL STATE
Sheol is not an eternal state, just as the diagram indicates. "Thou wilt not leave
my soul there. God's power goes down and brings hi. 'm up. Our brother thinks
there is a long sleep before that time, but my idea is that the conscious state of
existence continues until the resurrection.
We come now to the most complete and perfect representation in the world in the
sixteenth chapter of Luke, the rich man and Lazarus. "In hades he lifted up his
eyes." He was on the lower side. A great gulf was fixed, so that he could not pass
over, nor Lazarus pass to him. Every element of hades and sheol is all in that
parable, and though our brother strives tooth and nail to get some other mystical
meaning out of it, it is a clear study of character. The gulf of character is there,
that separates the human race into saints and sinners in this life.
My answer to soul-sleeping is the intermediate state. If anybody can
understanding^ study the intermediate state and fairly grasp it and stick to soul-
sleeping he can do more than I. There is a conscious state for all mankind. He
goes on living; he will continue to live until something will stop that existence,
and there is nothing in the soul itself that can bring about that.
"I saw a pale horse, whose name was death, and hades followed with him." Death
goes to take the bodies and hades to take the souls. "Death and hades gave up the
dead that were in them." Death gives up the bodies and hades the soul." "The last
enemy that shall be destroyed is death." "Death and hades were cast into the lake
of fire;" that is the end of the intermediate state. I agree with our brother in his
opinion that everybody has not gone to heaven. The theologians are foolishly
giving us a lot of rot in preaching folks to heaven. Every funeral you go to the
minister declare that the dead are in heaven. John Wesley said no human being
has gone to heaven. He said they went to hades. "No man hath ascended into
heaven." — John3: 13. "No man hath seen God at any time." Jesus knew what He
was talking about. Our brother quoted, "David is not yet ascended into heaven."
Nobody has gone to heaven; nobody will go to heaven until after the resurrection
and judgment. Then comes the eternal state of heaven and gehenna. But we are
not going into that now; that will come later.
AGREE UPON SOME POINTS
Pastor Russell, in reply to Dr. Eaton's contention, said:
I am very glad there are some points of agreement; that our brother believes that
the scriptures are true, that all go into sheol, and that the word hades of the New
Testament is the exact equivalent of the word sheol in the Old. The two words are
identical in their meaning, the one from the Greek and the other from the Hebrew.
Whatever is true in respect to the use of the Hebrew word is true also in
respect to the Greek word. Therefore if there is neither wisdom nor knowledge
nor device in sheol, neither is their wisdom, knowledge or device in hades,
whither thou goest.
This is a very interesting chart, but one of the most interesting features is that
there is very little Scripture about it. You notice that our dear brother knows all
about this matter — I do not know how. (Laughter and applause) He has pointed
out that here is Tartarus, and there is something else, but how does he know?
What do the Scriptures say? The word Tartarus occurs only once in the New
Testament, and it is never associated with hades at all. It refers to the condition in
which the spirits in prison are. And that gulf, which our dear brother has chosen
for his whole theory! If that parable were not there, I am wondering what our dear
brother would have done! (Laughter and applause) .We are going to hold that
parable, it is too good to give right away. But we want you to think of this. That
poor rich man in the parable has some resemblances to every one of you. I see
some here with white linen; I see by your aces that you have fared sumptuously
today. Those were two of the items which were recorded against the rich man.
You have no sores, nor are you reclining at the rich man's gate.
APPLICATION OF A PARABLE
Now watch out! If you are going to apply the parable as our brother has you will
have to apply to yourselves the fate you give the rich man! Our brother thought I
was fighting tooth and nail about this parable, but this is the first time I have
mentioned it. He has been the one who has been worrying about it. Wait awhile,
dear friends, and meantime think that to carry that precious cup of water across
the gulf, when a whole bucketful would evaporate before it got to hades, would be
a most extraordinary procedure.
Our brother wants to know whether Jacob looked to go to his son Joseph in the
belly of the lion. By no means. We did not claim that the word grave is the full
translation of the word sheol; we do claim that grave is a better translation of it
than hell. "The nearest English thought is "the hidden state." Jacob did expect to
go into the death state to his son, because he anticipated that that was where his
son had gone. If you will take an unabridged dictionary you will find that at the
time of the translating of our Bible in the
old version they used this word "hell" in a very general way. A man would speak
of "helling" his house — hemeant that he was going to thatch it. Or he would
speak of "helling" his potatoes — heintended to cover them in a pit, in a dark,
damp condition, without any suggestion of heat or light or intelligence. We shall
have something to say about this entire matter, and a satisfactory explanation of
the rich man and Lazarus in due time.
I agree very well with our brother regarding the "flock of sheep." They do rush to
sheol. The people are all rushing to the tomb, the place into which they have been
consigned until the time for awakening of them all, the dismal, dark place, where
"the dead cannot praise thee; in sheol who shall give thee thanks! "
THE LOWEST HELL
The "lowest hell" signifies the most complete destruction. "Hell from beneath is
moved to meet thee at thy coming." You will see, if you will take your Bibles, and
read carefully this statement in Ezekiel 14, that the whole matter is figurative
language; it represents the fall of a great dynasty, a great government, just the
same exactly as the Lord spoke of coming upon Capernaum — "exalted to heaven
— cast down to hell" — brought down to a death condition, to utter overthrow.
Just so with Babylon, which is now completely desolated without inhabitant.
"Then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, "0 death where is thy
sting; O grave where is thy victory?" The prophet points out that the time is
coming when hades is to be destroyed. How will he destroy hades? By bringing
the people out of it. "All that are in their graves" shall be awakened, and there
won't be hades any longer. God pointed out in advance how the great work of
Christ should be to redeem the world by the sacrifice of Himself, and that having
given the sacrifice on behalf of the whole world He should release the world from
hades, and grant to all men the opportunity of life. To some special ones, who are
specially favored, there will be particular privileges — the Lord is blessing you
and me with the knowledge of His plan so that we may be reckoned as already
passing from death unto life, but the time for the world to have the opportunity of
coming out will be future, when their time of resurrection shall come, the general
resurrection. The church shall have part in the first resurrection, and the world in
the general resurrection. Then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written,
"0 death where is thy sting, grave where is thy victory?" This sting has been on
the race all the time since the fall, it is stinging the whole world, but in God's due
time it shall be removed.
CLOSE OF THE DEBATE
Dr Eaton in closing the evening's debate said:
It is very interesting to see how very much in common we hold in this doctrine of
the intermediate state. The only question is whether it is a conscious existence or
not, and, of course, that has its tremendous influences on the other discussions to
follow. I did my best to bring him out on the rich man and Lazarus, but I could
not. He won't say what he thinks and he is very wise that he does not. We will get
it, however, in due time, and he hopes I will be out of breath by that time. If he
could only make a figure out of it he would be all right. He says we don't know
anything about Tartarus? The word is used as a verb in 1 Pet. 3:18, and means
that God tartarused them to hades. Tartarus is the hell of hades. All Greek
scholars knew of Tartarus, but they thought of it as eternal, while we see that it is
only until the resurrection.
The Lord's words to the thief, "Today thou shalt be with me in Paradise." That
was a conscious state of existence, not the grave. Paul says, "I knew a man in
Christ, caught up to the third heaven" — the throne of God. And then he goes on,
"I knew a man who was caught up to Paradise, and heard unspeakable words." In
those words Paul describes two experiences, two visions, one in heaven, the other
in the Paradise of hades.
To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life that grows in the
Paradise of God." Peter says the soul of Jesus went to hades, in quoting the 16th
Psalm, while His body went to the tomb. Jesus himself said He would go to
Paradise in speaking to the thief And Jesus said immediately upon His
resurrection to one of the disciples, "Touch Me not, for I am not yet ascended to
My Father." He had gone to hades, to Paradise, He did not go to the Father. Is not
that right? Paradise is the intermediate state, where all the good go at death.
Tartarus is the intermediate state where all the evil go at the same time.
CLEARNESS OF SCRIPTURAL
TEACHINGSDEBATED ON BY
ALLEGHENY BIBLE EXPERTS
Both Speakers Make Telling Points and Earn Much Applause
AUDIENCE VERY ENTHUSIASTIC
REPRINTED FROM THE GAZETTE OF OCTOBER 23
CLEARNESS OF SCRIPTURAL TEACHINGS
Standing room was at a premium in Allegheny Carnegie Music hall last night
where the third joint debate between the Rev. Dr. E. L. Eaton of the North
Avenue Methodist Episcopal church, Allegheny, and Pastor C. T. Russell of the
Bible House congregation opened. The entire floor, gallery and the vestibule
leading to the big hall were crowded with people. The audience was probably the
largest since the debate began last Sunday afternoon.
The Rev. J. W Sproull, D. D., presided at the meeting, and after announcing the
subject for discussion introduced the debaters. Besides the discussion of the
subject, there was a lively and learned debate on the Hebrew words, their
definition and application as used in the Scriptures. During the discussion the
original subject was almost lost sight of for a time while the speakers discussed
The usual devotional exercises preceded the discussion and a number of hymns
were rendered during and at the close of the speeches. Prof B. Frank Walters of
the Bible House congregation, presided at the organ. The stage was occupied by a
large number of ministers.
The subject of the debate last night was that "The Scriptures clearly teach that all
of the saved will become spirit beings, and after the general judgment will enter
Dr. Eaton affirmed and Pastor Russell denied. Dr. Eaton opened the affirmative
side as follows:
THE BASIS OF THE DOCTRINE
Mark Hopkins was one of the most distinguished teachers that this country ever
produced, and he had a way of teaching what he thought was truth and what was
false in evolution, and I will give you a little idea of his that will become the basis
of the doctrine I am going to speak of tonight, namely, regeneration. His idea was
that the first great law of nature, the most extensive and universal, was the law of
gravity, and the next law of nature, not so extensive, but more intensive, was the
law of cohesion, which held the particles of matter together. Gravity pulls down,
but cohesion holds together in spite of gravity, so that the former is a law higher
than the latter, but does not grow out of the latter, it contains all there is in gravity
plus something more, and that something more is from above, and comes by a
creative act. It is not therefore evolution, that is, atheistic evolution, but evolution
Next above cohesion we get chemical affinity, higher than cohesion, containing
all there is of cohesion, gravity and chemical affinity plus something more, and
that something is from above, by creation. Next is the law of vegetable life. We
have the vegetables that contain all tile first three principles in operation, and
something above, the product of a creative act. When we reach life, we reach the
great question that has been occupying the minds of scientists specially for the
past fifty years and particularly the last twenty-five. Such men as Hegal, Huxley,
Spencer, M. Pasteur and Tyndall, keenest brains, are practically agreed that life
comes from preexistent life, that dead matter cannot become living matter until it
comes under the influence of matter previously alive. Life is a creation from God.
I am an evolutionist of that kind, theistic evolution. Science stands by that, and I
stand by science.
DARWINISM NOT SUSTAINED
Next above life is the production of species. Charles Darwin spent his life in
trying to show that species originated by natural causes, but Huxley before his
death, stated that to place Darwin's doctrine beyond a possibility of assault, ought
to have shown two things, namely, that varieties within one-species could be so
widely divergent by raising or breeding as to be no longer fertile one with
another; secondly, that hybrids could be made fertile. Neither of these
propositions is sustained, and Darwin's doctrine falls to the ground.
Next above the animal kingdom is man; his body,
which is like every other animal, only a little better built, although I have seen
some men that do not seem to be so handsome as dogs, and some women that are
more homely than horses. But man was made of the dust of the ground, of
material things, just as the tower animals were. In many respects the animals
excel as animals, not in all; the superiority of man is not in this physical nature
chiefly. I thoroughly believe the word of God, which states that he formed man's
body of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and
man became a living soul. He breathed something into that body, the breath of
life. In the Hebrew whenever animals are said to have the breath of life it is
always the word ruach chai, although it is never said to have been breathed into
animals; when man is said to have the breath of life it is always nishma chai? All
men and animals died at the flood "in which was the breath of-life" —
nishmamach chai — thecombination showing that destruction of both animals and
MAN CREATED LIKE GOD
The creation of man in the image and likeness of God signifies that God
constituted man in his basic faculties like God — hehad sensibilities like God; he
had a will like God; all the beings in the universe can think, feel and act, believe,
love and obey; all the beings in the universe that believe God, love God and obey
God, are God's children, wherever they live. To have consecrated that intellect to
God, by believing in him, and that heart to God by loving him, and that will to
God by obeying him, constitutes them God's children, whether they were bom in
heathen or Christian lands. If they did that, they are God's children. That is what
Peter said to Cornelius when he said, "In all nations he that feareth God is
working righteousness and is accepted by Him."
But man does not stop when he has a soul. That soul is a mortal soul, in the sense
I described the other night, in the sense that there is no self-existent condition; in
the sense that it was made to live, and not to die; in this only is it properly a living
soul — itis nowhere in the Scriptures called an immortal soul. The soul's nature is
to live, and therefore it cannot sleep or go into none-existence; it is a living soul.
Originally it was sinless, but it lost that, as our brother taught the other night.
Depravity has smitten the race. What is depravity? It is a moral twist. Depravity
does not add any faculty; it does not add any intellectual or physical or moral
faculty; but it does subtract, blur, weaken
them. We all come into the world with that twist, but, thank God, we come with a
Redeemer already provided.
When a man builds a state he founds a prison; when God established the world
He provided a Redeemer. My brother said that in Christ, as the seed, all the
families of the earth shall be blessed; they are being blessed. There would have
been no one blessed if it had not been for Christ. God was not mean enough to
make Adam and Eve the father and mother of the race without a Redeemer, and
therefore He has blessed every man, woman and child of the race. They are all
blessed in Christ.
REGENERATED MAN IS A TRICHOTONATE
The spiritual nature comes by regeneration. The animal condition is gravity,
cohesion, chemical affinity, vegetable life, plus; man is animal, vegetable and all
below it, plus. Plus what? Plus the soul. But does he stop when he gets a soul?
No; man is soul, animal, vegetable, and all below, plus a spirit nature. How does
spirit come to him? By regeneration. God did not make him a spirit being
originally; man was originally a bichotonate — having two parts, having a body
and soul. When he becomes regenerated he is a trichotonate — three parts, body,
soul and spirit. That which makes one a trichotonate is a thing — nota quality nor
an attribute nor an experience; but a thing, as a body is a thing, a soul is a thing.
an identity; a spirit entity is bestowed upon us, or comes within us, in
Go to the first chapter of John, and there you strike regeneration squarely. Until
you get to John you would never dream that there is any such thing as
regeneration. Matthew, Mark or Luke say nothing of it. How did Matthew get
people saved? He said, "Accept the Messiah and join the procession." But John
did not teach that. You cannot be saved by joining the church, nor the procession.
You have got to have regeneration, by the power of the Holy Ghost, in this life!
The first chapter of John has these words, "To those that received Him, to them
gave He power (right, authority) to become the children of God." Were they not
children before? No. I repudiate this nonsense that is going about all over the
country that everybody is a child of God because he is a human being; that is
unscriptural. God's children are those who are bom again, by the power of the
Holy Ghost. (Applause)
We hear much of the brotherhood of man, which I affirm, and the Fatherhood of
God, which I deny. It is not a corollary. I believe in the unity of humanity, but not
that mankind belongs to God unless they get to Him by regeneration. This text
proves it. You cannot be born saved, as the followers of Islam believe; you cannot
be born saved, as the Catholics believe; nor as
some of the members of the Methodist church believe. Belonging to a church
won't save anybody. Nothing can save you but being born of the Holy Ghost. That
is the doctrine of regeneration squarely.
CAN MANUFACTURE SCRIPTURE
We have this gain in the third chapter of John, "Except a man be born from above
he cannot inherit the kingdom of God. "That which is bom of the flesh is flesh;"
that is simple. "That which is born of the spirit (meaning the Holy Ghost) is a
spirit." Manufacturing Scripture again, am I? I said I had a right to manufacture
Scripture, to borrow Paul's and Peter's direction. Why do I put in "a" there?
Because every Greek scholar knows that when a noun has no article before it he
must put in an indefinite article in order to make sense. "That which is bom of the
flesh is flesh; that which is bom of the spirit is spirit."
Now you have your spiritual nature, a deposit from the Holy Ghost in men, an
entity, not a quality, a faculty; but a thing from God. You are a trichotomy, a
three-part being, body, soul and spirit; you are complete now. It goes on to say,
"Except a man be born of water and the spirit he cannot see the kingdom of God."
In regeneration there are two distinct things to think of One is, the soul needs
cleansing of its impurity. It is crooked; it needs straightening; it is weak, it needs
strengthening. All the work upon the soul is symbolized by water — baptism, if
you choose; immersion, if you choose. I take the whole thing and won't quarrel
Water is the symbol of what is to be done to the soul. Depravity must be cured,
and is cured by regeneration. The other part is the importation of the divine
nature, by what is called the breathing in of the spirit. That is the doctrine of
regeneration; that is the great thing to be done to the soul in human life, if he is
ever made a child of God. The Bible does not call him a child of wrath, a child of
the wicked one — anything but a child of God. I do not frequently use the word,
"a child of the devil," because if I had a son who was wicked and remained
unconverted, and I called him a child of the devil, it might reflect on me. But if he
went to the devil I guess he would have to be called that.
A NATURAL AND A SPIRITUAL BODY
"There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body" — " natural" here is from
the Greek psuche, which means soul, translated seven times soul and 41 times life
in the New Testament. "There is a soulical body" — I am making an adjective
now to fit the word — a soulical body; I am looking at a thousand soulical bodies
now — humanbeings. "There is a soulical body and there is a pneumaticon body."
The pneumaticon body is the one that you will have in the resurrection. "The first
man Adam was made a living soul" — psuche. You cannot find an Old Testament
text that calls an unconverted unregenerate man a spirit or a spiritual man. Oh,
yes, it speaks of Pharoah having "lost his spirit." The word ruach is sometimes
used in the psychological sense for mental state; when Pharoah lost his spirit he
lost his courage. But you cannot find the word applied literally to any
unregenerate unconverted man in the Bible. "The first man is of the earth, earthy;
the second man is the Lord from heaven." "On heaven," says the revised version.
The old translators thought there was a contrast here between the Lord and Adam;
it is not so at all; it is a contrast between the first and the second man, between
"I," unregenerate, on the one hand and "I," regenerate, on the other.
A spiritual man belongs to another species; he is not another variety of man; he
belongs to spiritual and heavenly things. Where shall I place him? Not in another
form, but in another kingdom. I am just a common Methodist preacher, but I don't
preach any more that regeneration means merely quitting your meanness,
although I would like to have that; I don't mean that regeneration is merely being
good. I teach, on the authority of science and the Word of God that in order to be
a spiritual man you will have to be made so by the power of the Holy Ghost.
"The psuche man receiveth not the things of the spirit of God, for they are
foolishness unto him; neither can he know them, for they are spiritually
discerned." You have to be regenerated to see spiritual things. That is why so
many unregenerated fools go about and say "I don't think there is anything in the
Bible." They are psuche men. They are not regenerated.
PETER TOLD OF PROMISES
Our Lord in dying spoke of his "spirit" — pneuma, as did Stephen, but of
unregenerate persons in the New Testament this word is not used. Ananias and
Sap-phira are referred to as giving up the ghost — psuche. Jude 9, the apostle in
describing terribly wicked people, who did not have a spirit nature, and refers to
them as psuchechon, soulical people. Peter tells us about exceeding great and
precious promises whereby we are made partakers of the divine nature. Do we
become divine and become gods? I do not say that at all; we are made partakers of
the divine nature, by being regenerated; but imputed a child of God, not
politically a child of God, not incorporated a child of God, nor adopted a child of
God — heis made a child of
God. That is where God gets His children, by nature, by nature they become His,
by the incoming of His own nature.
To every son of Adam's race, if they turn to God as loyal children. He will give
them the great and precious promises to become His spiritual children. Little
children when they come to years of accountability, if they follow the right will
receive it unconsciously, and it will be a normal thing, so that they cannot
recognize the time when they became God's children, as thousands of Christians
today cannot recognize such a time. If those children die before accountability I
do not know what will be their conditions, nor does anybody else know; but we
have the Lord's words, "Of such is the kingdom of heaven." GOd will provide
some method of regeneration, and they must get regeneration before they will be
made angels. If a man backslides, what comes in? Does he lose his spirit nature?
No, but he perverts it, and it becomes devilish, just as those who were possessed
of the evil spirits in our Lord's time. He is more able to do devilish things than he
was before, and the last state of that man is worse than the first.
A hymn was rendered by the audience at the conclusion of Dr. Eaton's speech and
then Pastor Russell arose and said in reply:
AGREES WITH HIS OPPONENT
I have great pleasure in being able to agree to much that our dear brother has
presented this evening, but not all. I have special pleasure in noticing his keen line
of demarcation between the animal and the spirit being, that which is begotten of
the flesh and that which is begotten of the spirit, "That which is born of the flesh
is flesh, and that which is bom of the spirit is spirit." — that these must be "born
again," that is to say, that all who are called to be God's people in this present time
must be begotten of the spirit and must ultimately be born of the spirit, else they
cannot enter the kingdom of God, they can have no part or place in that great
kingdom of Christ, the millennial kingdom, which is to bless the whole world of
mankind, and bring order out of present confusion. You see that I thus agree with
much our brother said, respecting bichotomy and trichotomy, that the natural man,
the animal man, is along the lines of the flesh, earthly. He cannot receive.
appreciate or understand the things of the spirit. Only those who are begotten of
the spirit can understand spiritual things.
I am glad to notice that our brother has a measure of future probation also. I do
not know whether you noticed that or not, because it is quite a step of progress for
our brother. He has been somewhat converted since our last meeting! (loud
applause) Our brother notices that the children are not begotten of the spirit unless
they accept the privilege at maturity. Our brother notices that none of those who
preceded our Lord's first advent were begotten of the spirit. They all went to
hades, to sheol, and he says that they never can become spirit being until they be
begotten of the spirit, and we agree to that. Our brother seems to have the
impression that somehow they will become spirit, and
that all children who die in infancy and before they are begotten, will have that
some time in the future.
Our dear brother is more of an evolutionist than we claim to be. We do not find
any evolution in the Bible, and therefore we have none of it in our view. "The
world by wisdom know not God," therefore we shall not attempt to prove
anything by Darwin, Huxley or any other worldly-wise man! (Applause)
RESPECTS THE OLD TESTAMENT
Now to come back to this matter as a whole — whilethese different topics are
discussed separately they are all connected, and some features previously
mentioned must be considered. I have great respect for the Old Testament as well
as the New, and I do not forget that our Lord when he quoted always used the Old
Testament, and the apostles always quoted from the Old. There wasn't any New
Testament to quote from! (Applause) The Apostle Paul write to Timothy, "The
word of God is able to make thee wise unto salvation," and he referred to the Old
Testament, the only word of God there was at that time.
We agree with our brother that none are immortal. There is no suggestion that
immortality was possessed by Adam or anybody naturally. There is a promise of
immortality, a hope of immortality, and we are exhorted to "seek for glory, honor,
and immortality," and nobody seeks for what they have. The apostle declares,
"God only hath immortality, dwelling in light which no man can approach unto."
Now we come to a little difference. Our brother holds that in sheol there is
consciousness, and he has three texts represented on his chart to prove it —
theyare all he has — barringthose texts which represented the dancing of devils
when the king of Babylon was coming down, which we pointed out previously as
highly figurative, representing the terrible fall of Babylon from its exalted
position to a condition of overthrow and silence, death, the tomb. But the three
texts which are held by our brother are:
(1) Tartarus, a word which occurs but once in the scriptures, and it is not used in
respect to men at all.
but to those angels which kept not their first estate, and were cast down to
Tartarus, signifying the atmospheric heaven where these fallen beings have been
confined, "restrained under chains of darkness," that they should not assume
human form again and must operate through spirit mediums and as they have
always sought to do through wizard, witches, etc., God restraining them from any
communication directly. They are evil spirits which personate the dead and
represent that they are the dead.
THE THIEF'S DYING WORDS
Second — The words of the Lord to the dying thief, who asked, "Lord, remember
me when thou comest into thy kingdom." We won't dispute that the thief went to
hades, but did he get paradise there? Paradise once existed in Eden; it was a
paradise, a garden of God; but that paradise was lost through sin and
disobedience, and God in His Word has promised that through the redemption —
that is, in Christ Jesus-paradise shall be restored in the millennial kingdom. But
there is no paradise now. The thief s request was, "Remember me when thou
comest into the kingdom," and our Lord's reply, "Verily, verily," was in effect,
"So be it, amen, amen;" in other words, the Lord was promising him what he had
asked. But did the Lord come into his kingdom that day? Surely not. He was in
the tomb for three days, and even after his resurrection the kingdom was not
attained, else why do we still pray, "Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth
as it is in heaven."
The thief will remain in the place of silence and lack of knowledge, the tomb,
until the voice of the Great Deliverer shall call him forth, with all others
purchased by the precious blood, in the time when the prophecy shall be fulfilled,
"The spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because He hath anointed me to preach
the good tidings to the meek, to set at liberty the captives and them that are
bound." This was not fulfilled in our Lord's first advent, because He left even
John in prison, instead of releasing him from the thraldom of present evil
conditions, but the prophecy will be fulfilled when our Lord takes unto himself
His great power and begins His reign, when He shall say to all the prisoners of the
tomb, "Go forth, and to those who sit in darkness show yourselves! "
I will read this text, which our brother sets so much store by, and show you how
consistent it is with all, other portions of the divine plan. It could more properly
be translated, "Verily, verily, I say unto thee this day, thou shalt be with me in
paradise." What change have I made? Simply the transposition of a comma, and
we have just as much fight to put the comma one place as another, as anyone else
has, for the punctuation marks were never inspired. (Applause) The same use of
language is illustrated in the various uses of the expression. "This day," in the
eleventh chapter of Deuteronomy, where the prophet Moses is charging this
people "this day" to observe and keep the commandments of God — not that they
were all to be kept that day, but the command was given then.
THE LORD WAS IN HADES
Our Lord was not in paradise, but in hades, and the apostle exhorted when he
declared that God in His great power delivered him from hades in order that he
might accomplish his glorious work in due time. Hades was not a desirable,
happy, blissful place to be, but our Lord wasn't there because it was of that
character, but because it was necessary for him to die on behalf of the race in
order to redeem them — to go into absolute death as a payment of their penalty.
The third text is the "gulf text. We will get to it in the last session, where it
properly belongs, and then our dear brother won't need his chart any longer, for it
will take away his last text in support of the intermediate state. (Laughter and
The reward of the good and the wicked comes not when they die, but at the
resurrection of the dead. That there is no promise of punishment to the wicked or
reward to the righteous until the resurrection I present a few texts. Peter says,
"The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptation, and to reserve the
unjust to the day of judgment to be punished." Maybe Peter didn't know, but we
think he did. The other text is found in Luke, our Lord's words; our Lord was
commending those who would give a cup of cold water or any kindness in his
name. They were to call the poor and the impoverished and make a feast to them.
For they cannot recompense thee; thou shalt be recompensed at the resurrection of
the just." (Applause) Did our Lord know when they would be recompensed? We
are sure He did, and that Peter also spoke by inspiration.
Going back to Father Adam, created as our brother expressed it, a soulical man,
or, as the common version gives it very well for our purpose, an animal man —
nota brutish man, but an animal, .earthly being, in God's image in the qualities of
his heart, his mind, his will, in that he was able to reason exactly and intelligently.
In this condition God pronounced him "very good" — grand indeed the first pair
must have been! Then the scriptures proceed to say there was a fall from likeness
to God; degradation took the place of perfection, death took the place of the life
given to our first parents, and gradually increasing depravity, until the race today
is what we see it, comparatively poor in many respects.
ADAM LIVED 930 YEARS
Look, for instance, at the physical quality. Adam the perfect man, able to live 930
years, under the unfavorable conditions of his time. Today we thinlc people who
can live a hundred years are living a long time, with all the help of doctors,
hospitals and surgery to their advantage. But the perfect man was able to live 930
years notwithstanding death had hold of him and was hurrying him down to the
great prison house. The whole human family have gone down with him, but the
whole human family has had a Redeemer provided for them.
I was glad our brother brought that point in — " that all are blessed in the
Redeemer." I was glad he seems to realize that in some way Christ's redemptive
work was applicable to the whole world of mankind. What has Christ done for the
world? Let him answer himself when he says, "I came to seek and to save that
which was lost." What was lost? An angelic nature? No, man was created on the
human plane. That which was lost was redeemed. What therefore will be restored
in due time, when the Lord begins his work of blessing, will be that which was
possessed by Adam in the beginning, and representatively by him for the whole
race — the. glorious perfection of human nature, pronounced "very good" by God
Man lost not only perfect physical form, but all the mental and moral qualities
constituting him an image of God were impaired and injured; but they were all
included in the redemption, and God has provided a time of restoration of these to
man. When? In the millennial kingdom; when that kingdom shall come for which
we are praying, when God's will shall be done on earth as it is done in heaven,
when these poor creatures who have been falling mentally and morally and
physically, weakened and unable to help themselves, shall have the mighty power
of the Savior to lift them up to perfection, if they will be submissive to the
influences of divine regulation then.
We are doing, our best today to help the world to a better condition, with social
uplifts of various kinds, and we would like to do much more for them than our
frail conditions will permit us to do — we stand aghast at the enormous needs in
these directions, but thank God, the time is coming when the completely perfect
power shall be exercised, when Christ shall take unto Himself His power and
begin His reign. (Applause)
IT WAS NOT GODS PLAN
I would like to mention a point in full accord with what our brother has said;
throughout the entire Old Testament from the first verse of Genesis to the last of
Malachi there is not a solitary statement to the effect that God applies heavenly or
spiritual things to any soul of man during that time; not one reference to going to
heaven, not one reference to being begotten of the spirit. Why? Because that was
not God's plan. The time of offering the blessing of spiritual nature had not come.
It came exactly when our Lord came. I have some of the same Scriptures for your
attention that have been quoted to you.
As, for instance, the declaration of John, "He was in the world, and the world was
made by Him, and the world knew Him not; He came unto His own, and His own
received Him not, but as many as received Him to them gave He power (privilege,
liberty) to become sons of God." None were granted the privilege of being sons of
God before. The very highest privilege in the Jewish dispensation was a position
as a servant. The Apostle Paul states this when he says "Moses was faithful as a
servant over his house; but Christ as a son over His own house, whose house are
we, if we hold fast the beginning of our confidence firm unto the end." We are the
house of sons; this house of sons began with the Redeemer; He is the forerunner,
and the church are the members of His body who follow after Him. He is "the
head over all things to the church which is His body." None went before Him,
none could possibly precede Him in this glorious company, otherwise He would
not properly have been the head.
Now notice what the ancient worthies did look for. Read in the scriptures what
God promised to Abraham: "Look now from the place where thou art, northward
and southward and eastward and westward, all the land that thou seest to thee will
I give it, and unto thy seed after thee for an everlasting possession." Heavenly
things? To sit with Christ in the throne? No! "All the land that thou seest,"
forever! Stephen refers to this promise, saying, 'Tie came into this land, and God
gave him none inheritance in it, no, not so much as to set his foot on, though he
promised it to him for a possession and his seed after him, when as yet he had no
WHAT STEPHEN REALIZED
Stephen evidently realized that Abraham was to get his possession at a future
time, or else God's promise, in his mind, was a false statement! And so we read,
in the ninth chapter of Amos, "They shall sit every man under his own vine and
fig tree," and "they shall plant vineyards and eat the fruit of them, build houses
inhabit them." Do spirit beings sit under fig trees? Is that the promise made to the
house of sons of the present time? No, no! To the kings and priests, the Church of
Christ now being chosen, the blessings are spiritual, of a heavenly kind.
In Hebrews eleven, the apostle, after citing these ancient worthies, said, "These,
all having died, in faith, received not the promise, God having provided some
better thing for us, that they without us should not be made perfect." "Some better
thing" — for whom? For the church, the house of sons; better than what God
provided for the house of servants. The thing provided for the house of servants
are good things, but those provided for the house of sons are still better things.
"Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither hath it entered into the heart of man the
things which God hath prepared for them that love him" — forthe church class,
those whom "he is not ashamed to call his brethren."
Those Who lived prior to the gospel age are noble characters — Abraham was a
wonderful character, and John the Baptist, the last of the prophets, of whom our
Lord said, "The least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he!" John could not
be of the kingdom class; he said: "I am the friend of the bridegroom"-not the
bride, or a member of the bride class, the church. That was as far as John's
Our brother pointed out the other evening that our Lord brought immortality to
light. I would like to have you notice that text. "Christ brought life and
immortality to light through the gospel." Two things: He not only brought
immortality to light, that is the gift of God to the church, but He also brought life
to light — everlasting life to those who will not have immortality. The
immortality class is the little flock, the joint heirs who shall be associated with
Him as members of His body, those to whom it will be His pleasure to give glory,
honor and immortality and joint heirship in the kingdom, but for the world the
Lord brought life to them.
I trust nobody is sorry that the Lord has something for others outside the little
flock, the elect church. I trust our hearts glow as we think of the fact that, "God so
loved the world" — not merely the church, and that He has not only given the
church "exceeding great and precious promises, that they might obtain the divine
nature," but also that we can see something of blessing to the world in due time.
AGREES WITH DR. EATON
I am partly in agreement with our brother respecting being begotten of the spirit
— not that everybody is to have that blessing, because only "to as many as
believed on His name" was the promise given; those who do not hear now do not
have this special privilege; whatever happens to them they cannot get the great
salvation promised to those who walk in the footsteps of Christ in the present time
of trial and difficulty. There is a difference between the begetting and the birth of
the spirit. Although only one word is used in the Greek (genao) to signify the two
conditions, the preposition' associated with the word indicates whether birth or
begetting is referred to; in the former case the preposition signifies "out of," in the
latter case it signifies "into."
Only one who is begotten of the spirit can be bom of the spirit, just as birth in the
natural life follows only upon begetting. The begetting takes place in the present
time, upon consecration to the Lord, but the birth of the spirit is not realized until
the resurrection, when the work of begetting is fully complete. The Scriptures
indicate this very clearly. Our Lord Jesus is declared to be "The first-born from
the dead," and we, if we are faithful and become members of His body, in the
resurrection we shall reach the glorious condition of birth. "He is the first-born
among many brethren" — we are the brethren, and we shall be like Him, and see
Him as He is and share His glory, and possess the divine nature if obedient to the
end. This divine nature shall be ours in the future — thestatement of Peter is that
we were begotten by these great and precious promises, that we might become
partakers of the divine nature in the resurrection — thosehaving part in the first
resurrection shall have the divine nature. Glory, honor and immortality shall be
The provision for mankind is different; it is that stated by the apostle in Acts 3:
19-21, restitution — a time of restoration, the restoring again of the lost condition
in the garden of Eden. This time of restitution shall come when the last member of
the kingdom class shall have been glorified, and completed for the work of
service in glory. All the holy prophets declare that this restitution shall take place,
according to Peter's words — notuniversal salvation, but a universal opportunity
to come to the knowledge of the only name given whereby we may be saved.
DR. EATON REPLIES TO RUSSELL
Dr Eaton then arose and said in reply:
My brother has berated me because I stated that immortality was not mentioned
in the Old Testament. Of course, it is not found there in so many words; but it is
all true of the Old Testament. What was the matter with David when he said,
"Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me." It is all a
play upon words. He says all go to hell, which
shows he is careless; he just slides from one side to the other. Hell means nothing,
sheol means nothing, hades nothing, paradise means nothing — theyall mean
forgetfulness, and sleep, and death. That's where you are, and that's where he is.
The old Hebrews who translated the Septuagint didn't treat the words that way;
they didn't think death and hell and sleep mean the same thing. They were
exceedingly careful to translate sheol 61 times out of 65 hades. Homer spoke of
hades, and at that time the idea was fixed and settled; the Greeks had the idea very
clearly, hades divided into two compartments, only they thought of them as
eternal. Our Lord adopted their idea, except that He did not make it eternal. The
New Testament uses these ideas, and you must treat them respectfully. They are
words which the Holy Ghost selected. (Applause)
"If God spared not the angels which sinned, and cast them down to Tartarus, and
committed them to pits of darkness, and reserved them unto judgment, and spared
not the ancient world"-Jesus said: "Depart from Me, into everlasting fire prepared
for the devil and his angels." These two texts together indicate the fact that
wicked men are identified with the fallen angels in their association together.
"The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of trial, and to keep the unjust
under punishment unto the day of judgment" — thatis the revised version,
American revision, the best scholarship in the world. The word "punishment" here
is "kolasin," and refers to the same condition as experienced by the rich man in
"God only hath immortality" — a Scriptural expression. God is the only being
who hath immortality as a necessary endowment — a necessary thing is a thing
that cannot be. God's immortality is a necessity. He can confer it upon the race
and individuals, but we have not got it as God has it. There is nothing in the Bible
about seeking for immortality. The word is "aphthasia," and signifies purity. Read
the revised version, and you will get some light. "Brought life and immortality to
light." The word "life" is "zoa," and "immortality" is "aphtharsia," purity. Jesus
Christ brought life and incorruption to light in the gospel. That is the great
doctrine of the gospel, soul purity, and the doctrine of eternal life.
DOESN'T UNDERSTAND THE IDEA
My brother spoke of eternal life as though he did not understand the idea, and I do
not think he does. He hasn't the least conception of what eternal life is. "This is
eternal life, to know God, and Jesus Christ, whom He has sent" — notto know
about Him, but to know Him as He is. As the Father hath life (zoa aionios) in
Himself (the same as immortality, an original endowment), so hath He given to
the Son to have eternal life in Himself." "I am come that they might have life" —
zoa, not immortality. Nobody gets immortality as a conditional gift, but by faith in
Jesus Christ as a conditional gift eternal life is bestowed. "The wages of sin is
death, but the gift of God is eternal life" — it is the greatest thing in the universe.
I didn't expect my brother to go into some of these matters tonight. I had hoped I
had converted him the last night, but he is as bad as he was then! (Applause)
Pastor Russell concluded the debate for the evening as follows:
I must remind my brother that David being a prophet spoke beforehand of Christ,
and that is particularly why you and I have particular reverence for the psalms, for
they are prophetic. Davidwas not always speaking of himself He and the prophets
wrote as Peter tells us, "as they were moved by the holy spirit," not clearly
understanding all they did declare.
Our brother has referred to the devil and the angels. We will come to that in the
last discourse. It will be all right when we come to it. They don't go to Tartarus
then either. The fallen angels only remain there until that time, "reserved in chains
of darkness until the judgment Of the great day."
Our brother has referred to "kolasin" as signifying torment. If he will consult his
Greek lexicon more closely he will find that it means restraint. (Applause) The
Greeks used the expression, for instance, in the phrase, "The charioteer restrains
his fiery steeds."
He must not know that there is such a thing as immortality in the Scriptures. He
will find that the words "corruption" and "immortality" are used almost
interchangeably in the Scriptures. The two words are used in the fifteenth chapter
of 1 Corinthians, when the apostle describes the change that shall come to the
church: "This mortal shall put on immortality, and this corruption shall put on
corruption." The two words are here used.
WHAT THE LORD REALLY MEANT
"This is eternal life that they should know God, and Jesus Christ whom He has
sent." Did our Lord really mean that there is nothing more in eternal life than in
knowing God — that there is no real eternal life? Certainly not. He wants that any
one wanting to attain to eternal life could not hope for it unless he should come
into such thorough harmony with God and complete knowledge of His character
that he would be able to please the Lord in his daily conduct. The wicked can
never have eternal life; that is the reason why they could never go to eternal
torment! (Applause) "He that hath the Son hath life; he that hath
not the Son shall not see life." That is what the wicked get. I am glad for them!
Our dear brother has spoken about zoa aionios. The word zoa is a very simple
word, used every day; it simply signifies life in the commonest sense of the word.
We have it incorporated into our language in the word "zoology." Lasting life, zoa
aionios, is promised to those who obey the Lord, and only those will get it who
after learning of the work of Jesus Christ submit themselves willingly to His
I trust we will not permit these matters to draw our attention away from the great
fact that you and I today are living in the present time by the grace of God with a
wonderful opportunity and hope for salvation before us; it is the salvation which
belongs to this age.
God is now taking out the little flock to be joint heirs of the kingdom. But you
and I would not be ready for that great work of blessing the world unless we had
formed characters in the meantime, and God has provided trials 'to test His
.people that they may be ready for the administration of the blessing to the world
as the seed of Abraham, of which the apostle says. Gal. 3: 29, "If ye be Christ's,
then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise." There is a great
promise that God gave to Abraham, saying, "In thy seed shall all the families of
the earth be blessed."
That great promise has never been fulfilled. Gross darkness covers the earth and
the people, but a light shall shine, the great sun of righteousness shall arise, and if
you and I are to be members of that light, which shall shine forth as the sun to
heal the world and lift up all the willing, and rule as the great Prophet, and
Governor and as the great King, then we need now to make our calling and
election sure, attending to these things which the Lord hath set before His people.
SAINTS OF THIS GOSPEL AGE
WILL BE THE FIRST CALLED
TO TASTE JOYS OF HEAVEN
Pastor C. T. Russell Argues in Favor of this Proposition,
while the Rev. Dr. E. L. Eaton Opposes It
LARGE AUDIENCE IS INTERESTED
REPRINTED FROM THE GAZETTE OF OCTOBER 28
Every seat was occupied and the overflow packed all the aisles and the open
space at the entrance of the Allegheny Carnegie hall last evening when the
discussion of the fourth proposition in the joint debate between the Rev. Dr. E. L.
Eaton, pastor of the North Avenue Methodist Episcopal church, and Pastor C. T.
Russell of the Bible House congregation opened.
The subject last evening was, "The Scriptures clearly teach that only the 'saints'
of this gospel age will share in the 'first resurrection; ' but that vast multitudes
will be saved in and by the subsequent resurrection."
Pastor Russell had the affirmative in this discussion and, under the rules, opened
with an address lasting 50 minutes. Dr. Eaton followed with an address of similar
length, and then each was given 10 minutes for a reply to the arguments the other
The Rev. John A. Jayne, pastor of the Observatory Hill Christian church, was
chairman of last evening's meeting. Devotional exercises lasting 15 minutes
preceded the opening at 8 o'clock.
The large audience was very attentive throughout the evening. The interest in the
debate seems to grow with the discussion. The next discussion will take place
tomorrow evening at 8 o'clock and the last one on Sunday afternoon at 3 o'clock.
CONGREGATIONAL SINGING A FEATURE
The congregational singing has been a feature of the debates which appears to
have been much enjoyed. Prof B. Frank Walters of the Bible House congregation
is the organist and E. P. Russell is the preceptor.
Pastor Russell, in affirming the proposition for the evening's debate, said:
I feel, dear friends, that the topic of the resurrection of the dead is one of the most
important doctrines in the word of God, a doctrine which, it seems to me, has not
been granted its due place of importance in recent years, a doctrine, however,
which we find is very prominent indeed in the word of God. From our standpoint,
as heretofore presented, we understand the Scriptures to teach that the dead are
really dead: that they are not alive in any sense of the word, except in the sense
that our heavenly Father predetermined a resurrection of the dead, predetermined
that He should accomplish this matter through a redemption which would pay the
ransom price for our Father Adam's sin, and thus secure to all his posterity who
failed in him and who came under death conditions, an
opportunity for return to life; as the apostle says: "By one man sin entered into
the world, and death as the result of sin, and thus death passed upon all men."
In God's due time He sent forth His Son, that He might redeem us, that He might
purchase us with His own precious blood. The penalty upon the race was death,
extinction; but, in view of this intention on the part of our heavenly Father, death
was always spoken of in the past, preceding our Lord's coming, as a sleep. The
Lord expresses it thus to His people, and intimates in this way His sure intention
of bringing back all mankind from the tomb, and all those who believed God
expressed their confidence in the Almighty, in His promises, and in His power,
when they spoke of one another as falling asleep. We read you various texts of
Scripture on a previous occassion, showing that this word "sleep" is generally
applied throughout the Scriptures, not only to the good, but also to the forward,
that they all are said to have fallen asleep: "They slept with their father."
THE PENALTY FOR SIN
We would like to have you notice that the Scriptures teach that the penalty for sin
is death of the soul! "The soul that sinneth it shall die." And so it was because the
soul was under condemnation that our Lord is said to have "poured out His soul
unto death." We do not mean by soul any abstruse or obscure thing; we mean
sentient being, that which the Scriptures everywhere represent the soul to be. The
Scriptures represent that all souls are under sin, under the sentence of death. You
are a soul; I am a soul; every other member of Adam's posterity is a soul, and
each one shares in Father Adam's sin and each soul of us is under condemnation
of death. Who can redeem his soul from the power of the grave? Who can give to
God a ransom for his brother, or even himself? No one. So we are all helpless,
except as the heavenly Father provides the great Redeemer, and the Redeemer
gave the full price.
As it was your life and my life that was forfeited, your soul and my soul that was
condemned, so our Lord Jesus poured out His soul unto death. "He made His soul
an offering for sin." It was not merely our Lord's body, you see, but the Lord's
soul; and so Peter, in speaking of our Lord's resurrection, does not speak merely
of the resurrection of the body but, quoting the prophet David, declares "His soul
was not left in hades, neither did God suffer His Holy One to see corruption."
We would like to have you notice that the resurrection we preach, which the
Scriptures teach, is the resurrection of the soul, the being, the coming again of
those beings that now go down into death. To preach the resurrection of the body
would imply, we think, an absurdity. If the Scriptures taught it we would be ready
to accept even an absurdity, but the Scriptures do not teach that the same body
which goes down is to be resurrected. Your body, my body, will return to the dust
as it was; it will have no preference, and the atoms which compose your and my
bodies are not necessary to our heavenly Father in restoring our souls, in bringing
us to being again. There are plenty of atoms of matter, if he wished to create us
again of the earth earthy, without using the ones which composed the body at
AWAKENING NOT RESURRECTION
Let me call your attention to the fact that our Lord Jesus was the first one to rise
from the dead — the first one to experience resurrection. I know that we
sometimes hear people speak of those whom Elijah and Elisha brought back to
life again, and refer to these as resurrections, but not so the Scriptures. We
sometimes speak of the resurrection of Lazarus, or the son of the widow of Nain,
Jairus' daughter, but the Scriptures never do. They were merely awakenings. The
word "resurrection" has in it something more than that. The Greek word rendered
"resurrection" in the English is "anastasis," and anastasis signifies to bring up
again. Lazams was not brought up again; he was brought up to a measure of life,
but the measure of life he had when he died was only a mere drop of life, as it
You remember how the Lord spoke of the condition in which all mankind is,
when he said, "Let the dead bury their dead." All are under condemnation, under
the divine sentence, and their condition of existence is not full life.
When the Lord called Lazarus forth from the tomb He did not call him down
from heaven, because he was not in heaven; and He did not call him up from
place of Paradise; because he did not go to Paradise. Lazarus was dead; or to use
the illustration so common with the Lord and others, "Lazarus sleepeth; I go that I
may awake him out of sleep" — a sleep that otherwise would have lasted until the
dawn of the millennial day when the general resurrection would be due, but a
sleep that was interrupted temporarily, and Lazarus came back to a measure of life
such as he had previously. But he was still dead, except as he could be counted
alive by faith in Jesus Christ.
Let me quote some of the Scriptures which prove that our Lord Jesus was the tint
to rise from the dead. If I establish this point, that our Lord was the first to rise
from the dead, it proves what I contend for, that these others were not
resurrections, but merely temporary awakenings.
Acts 26: 23, "That Christ should suffer, and that He should be the tint which
should rise from the dead." 1 Cor. 15: 22, 23, "For as all in Adam die, even so all
in Christ shall be made alive; every man in his own order: Christ the first fruits,
afterward they that are Christ's at His coming." Col. 1: 10: "He is the head of the
body, the church, which is the beginning, the first born from the dead — that in
all things He might have the preeminence." Heb. 6: 19, 20: "Which hope we have
as an anchor to the soul, both sure and steadfast; which entereth into that within
the vail, whither the forerunner is forever entered" — He is the forerunner, the
first One to arrive, and we follow Him, but do not precede Him. Rev. 1:5: "And
from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the tint-begotten from the
JESUS FIRST TO ARISE
These Scriptures clearly establish the fact that our Lord was the first to rise from
the dead; consequently these others were merely temporary awakenings.
Coming back to Lazarus, we remind you of the words of the Lord in His comfort
to Martha and Mary, and I am sure His words have comforted many others since
in sorrow. Jesus said not. Thy brother is in paradise, nor in hades; what did He
say? "Thy brother shall rise again;" He points them to the real hope. Mary and
Martha were well instructed in the matter, and they said, "We know that he shall
rise again in the last day." They had faith in the resurrection. Jesus assured them
that He was the resurrection, that is to say, that resurrection power was in Him;
He was the one Through whom the dead should have their life, and that they
might have something in the present time. He proceeded to the awakening of
Lazarus as an illustration of His power, to be exercised in full at His second
advent. If Lazarus was at this time in paradise or heaven, or any good, desirable
place, do you think the Lord would have brought him back again, and represent
that He was conferring a favor upon Lazarus and the sisters? I tell you nay!
I remind you of the teaching of the apostles, that wherever they went their
preaching was, as it is recorded in the Acts; "they went preaching Jesus and the
resurrection." That was the hope- Jesus and His sacrifice, as the basis of all the
hope for the future life. Without Jesus and the ransom sacrifice there could be no
hope of a resurrection. The dead were all under the legal sentence; the Great
Judge had sentenced Father Adam and all his posterity to death. They could not
have life, could not be restored to life, until tint of all a ransom had been paid, and
therefore Jesus, as the great Redeemer, who gave Himself as the ransom for all,
who died that we might live, came upon the scene. He suffered and died, and
following this was His resurrection. The resurrection to mankind, as a result of
this glorious work, will be the fulfilment of this great plan of God; the fulfilment
will be the salvation.
AWAITING THE RESURRECTION
There is no salvation, as we pointed out on a previous occasion, in the present
time, except by faith, and so the apostle says to you and me who believe, and in
proportion as we believe, "We are saved by hope." You have a good hope toward
God; you believe that Christ died for our sins; therefore hoping in Him as the
Redeemer, you hope that there is future probation in God's plan; you expect to
have a share in the resurrection which God has provided through Jesus. You have
only the hope now. You are waiting for the resurrection, waiting for the time
when "the salvation shall be brought unto you at the revelation of our Lord and
Saviour Jesus Christ," as the apostle expresses it.
Mark the words of the apostle when he was on trial before some of his enemies;
he said: "For the hope of the resurrection of the dead I am called in question" — it
is because I believe in the resurrection of the dead that I am here a prisoner. Not
very many get into trouble now because they believe in the resurrection, because
the doctrine has been crowded out by unscriptural ones to the effect that when a
man dies he has got more alive than he ever was before. We see the great
importance of the doctrine of the resurrection of the dead when we see the fact
that a man who dies is really dead. Again he says: "We have a hope-toward God
that there shall be a resurrection, both of the just and the unjust." (Acts 24: 15) A
hope toward God! We see where there is a hope for the just, that they shall get a
blessing through the resurrection; but where will there be one for the unjust? We
will see when we come to it that the resurrection of the unjust is the great blessing
that God has in store for mankind in general
in the millennium.
We call your attention also to the Scriptures which speak of the dead as being
prisoners in the great prison house, the tomb, waiting for Emmanuel, to take to
Himself His great power and open the prison doors, as He himself applied the
prophecy of Isaiah 61 to Himself, "The spirit of the Lord God hath anointed me . .
. to open the prison doors and set at liberty the prisoners, and them that are
bound." In the great millennial age He will say to the prisoners of death. Show
yourselves. (Isaiah 42: 6-10) This is a pictorial way of stating the resurrection of
DOCTRINE OF THE RESURRECTION
Now we come to the one chapter in all the Bible which more than any other sets
forth this doctrine of the resurrection, the 15th chapter of i Corinthians. Begin at
the 12th verse. "Now if Christ be preached that He rose from the dead, how say
some amongst you that there is no resurrection of the dead." I know of a good
many who have been led so far astray that even in our day they deny the
resurrection, because they could see no reason nor use in it. Their argument is that
resurrection would mean a return to mortal bodies, and they say, will we not be
glad to shuffle off this mortal coil, and shall we be glad to get it back again? But
we answer that they are wrong in supposing that death had brought life more
abundant to them; the resurrection is what will bring life, the life giver is the
Redeemer, who at His second advent will give life, as at the first advent He
purchased the right to do so with His own precious blood.
"If Christ be not raised ye are yet in your sins." How much stress our Lord lays on
this matter of the Lord's resurrection! If our Lord had died and had not been raised
from the dead, we have no Savior. When He arose from the dead, that is the
assurance that He is now able to deliver those that trust in Him and who wait for
his time of deliverance.
"Then they which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished." Perished! If they are
gone to Paradise, or gone to heaven, could there be any question about perishing?
They are in the tomb, and if Christ has not been raised, if He has not redeemed us
and if He is not risen from the tomb, how could He ever accomplish the great
deliverance which is to be carried out in due time, according to the Scriptures? So
the apostle says, if Christ is not raised we are still in our sins; He has made no
atonement acceptable to God, and additionally all who fell asleep trusting in Jesus
"But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the first-fruits of them that
slept." You never have a first-fruits unless you expect after fruits, and just so
surely as he declares that Christ is a first-fruits so surely there is to be the after
fruitage, and that means the after resurrection. "By a man came death, and by a
man came the resurrection of the dead." Adam brought the death penalty by his
disobedience under the divine law. The Lord brought the blessed opportunity of
resurrection by His obedience, by giving His life as a ransom of Father Adam, and
thus purchasing the whole race of Adam who were redeemed by the precious
blood of Christ.
HOW ARE THE DEAD RAISED?
The apostle then discusses the matter of the body, and says, "Some men will say.
How. are the dead raised? With what body do they come. He is not speaking of
how are bodies raised up, but "How are the dead raised up." He is speaking of the
soul, the being, not speaking of the body; what kind of bodies will they have
when they are resurrected. His answer is, "O foolish person, that which thou
sowest is not quickened except it die." He is now applying this to nature; if you
plant corn you do not expect to see the same grain of com come up; but you will
expect to find other grains of the same kind. In death you bury the human being;
but you are not to expect the same body which you put down. The same body
which goes into the grave will not come up, but the being, the entity, will be the
same — God has preserved it in his own power, and He will clothe it with a body
in due time.
The apostle proceeds to note what God's good pleasure is concerning the various
features of the resurrection. "All flesh is not the same flesh, but there is one flesh
of fish, another flesh, of beasts, and another of birds. There are bodies celestial
and bodies terrestrial, but the glory of the celestial is one, and the glory of the
terrestrial is another." Here he suggests that in God's plan there are two classes of
beings, which our dear brother mentioned the other evening as dichotomy and
trichotomy. The dichotomy are those who have merely the animal nature, the
trichotomy are those who have been begotten of the spirit "from above," and who
therefore have the start of the new nature, and who, according to the apostle, are
classed as new creatures in Christ. These new creatures are
spiritual, and spiritual promises apply to them and belong to them. But God has a
special blessing also for the dichotomy; not a blessing with the church, for only
those begotten of the spirit shall attain spiritual blessings; they will not share in
the first resurrection, because in the latter only the kings and priests of this gospel
age shall have any share (Rev. 20), but there is a glory of terrestrial, earthly
nature, which is to be attained by the natural man in the later
resurrection. The apostle here wishes to show that two kinds of seed are sown,
and two kinds of fruitage shall result — God will give to each kind of seed his
own kind of body; to the natural man will be the natural body, similar to the one
he has now; and to the new creature will be the spiritual body, the heavenly body,
like unto Christ the glorious head.
A SPECIAL RESURRECTION
In verse 42, after the apostle describes the characteristics of the first resurrection,
the resurrection of the church, says: "Thus is THE resurrection of THE dead."
These emphatic words are shown by the original Greek, although they are not
apparent in the English translation. This is a special resurrection for a special
class, the chief among the dead — theyare the church, the body of Christ, faithful
in Christ Jesus, who are promised a share with the Lord in the first resurrection.
The word first means properly first in order, but also implies a chief condition, a
more important resurrection, implying a later resurrection of a less important
character — thekind which shall come to the world in general. God's proposition,
as described in this chapter (1 Cor. 15) is a spiritual body for the church, which
will be different from the natural animal body, which is of the earth earthly; the
church is to be changed from present earthly conditions and given bodies like
unto our Lord's glorious body; or as the Apostle Peter has declared, "God hath
given unto us exceeding great and precious promises, that by these we might be
made partakers of the divine nature — far above angels, principalities and powers,
and every name that is named, like unto our Lord and Master in His glory, and
shares with Him in His glory.
"The first man (Adam) was made a living soul (an animal soul), the last Adam
was made a quickening (life-giving) spirit." Christ was the last Adam and the
church is to be like Him, with spiritual bodies. Then the apostle proceeds: "As
was the earthly (Adam) so also are they that are earthly." As Father Adam was in
His perfection, before condemnation, so will they also be of the earthly class who
will share in the resurrection for the world of mankind in general. This will mean
that the world will come back by resurrection processes to all that Father Adam
had as the great earthly being whom God originally created. The apostle is not
speaking of the heavenly resurrection; he has already spoken of that and says that
all who have a share in it shall have spiritual bodies.
"Flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God." There was a disposition on
the part of many to suppose that human beings could enter and become partakers
of the glorious privileges of the spiritual kingdom, but the apostle is pointing out
by inspiration that the heavenly kingdom is a spiritual one, and that those who
become joint heirs with the Lord must be changed, and be spiritual, instead of
being earthly, animal beings — they must partake of the divine nature in place of
the human nature.
VICTORY OVER DEATH
Then, "when this corruption shall have put on incorruption, and when this mortal
shall have put on immortality," shall be brought to pass the saying that is written,
"Death is swallowed up in victory." Was death a good thing? No! Whose victory
is this? The victory of our Lord, the victory of our Heavenly Father through our
Lord Jesus Christ. When will death be swallowed up? After he shall-have
accomplished his mission. And how long will it take to swallow up death? It will
take the whole millennial age. Death will have its power until the very close of
that time, for the statement is, "He must reign until he hath put all enemies under
his feet. The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death."
In Revelation 20: 5 we have the statement: "The rest of the dead lived not again
until the thousand years are finished." The prophet John, the writer, has just
recounted the matter o£ the first resurrection; that they lived and reigned with
Christ a thousand years. But who will they be reigning over? A dead world!
Not a world in non-existence during the thousand years, but a world which will
not have attained to life, in its proper sense, until the thousand years are finished.
From God's standpoint this word "live" has a particular significance. Adam was
alive before the sentence of death came, and from the moment he became a
transgressor and under sentence he became a dying man instead of a living man.
That represents the condition of all the world. All have a measure of life, as they
exist today, but all are in a dying, not a living, condition. They are not in the
tomb, but God does not recognize them as alive. During the millennial age
conditions will be reversed, and instead of the race going down more and more
into degradation and sin and death and corruption, the order will be changed, and
they will be rising, and rising, and rising, out of death, out of death — but they
won't get out of death totally, fully, until the close of the age. They will not live,
in the sense that God speaks of it, until the thousand years are finished. Then,
having come to the condition of perfection, having received all that was lost, they
will live again in the same sense that Father Adam lived before he transgressed.
WHEN THE DEAD HEAR
Our Lord referred to the same thought in John 5: 25, "The hour is coming when
the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God, and they that hear shall live."
Some of us have already heard the voice of the Son, while we were children of
wrath, and from a reckoned standpoint we have begun to live, through faith in
Christ. "He that believed on the Son hath life," he has a life reckoned to him, and
so enjoying it by faith that it will be an everlasting life, and that the tomb will not
interfere with his life. But speaking of the world of mankind in general during the
millennial age, when the dead are awakened (John 5: 28-29) as Lazarus was
awakened, there will be an opportunity for all who have never heard the voice of
the Son of Man to hear it then, and those who hear in the proper sense of obeying
will continue to progress to the attainment of life, in its full sense.
"God wills that all men shall be saved, (to be preserved, that they should not be
totally cut off from opportunity while in the tomb, preserved from extinction), and
to come to the knowledge of the truth. The great majority are in ignorance, but
God wills that all shall know, because, the apostle goes on to say, "There is one
God, and one Mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus, who gave
himself a ransom for all to be testified (to all) in due time." When you heard the
testimony your responsibility began. When the heathen shall hear their
responsibility will begin. Those who will hear during the millennial age, in the
sense of obeying that great prophet, teacher, Christ the Head, and the church His
body, will be brought up gradually by restitution processes, until at the close of
the millennial age they shall live, and those who refuse to hear the prophet —
mark the words of Peter (Acts 3: 23), "shall be utterly destroyed amongst the
Daniel gives us a picture in the 12th chapter, of the millennial conditions: "Some
shall arise to life; and some to shame and everlasting contempt." The word
everlasting her is from the Hebrew word "olam," which is not as strong as our
English word, but is equivalent to the word "lasting." They will come forth to
lasting contempt. How long will it last? As long as the contemptible conditions
last. I fancy Nero, for instance, coming forth. Under the new conditions as he will
see around him the evidence of righteousness he will experience shame and
contempt; he will not only have contempt for himself, but the contempt of all
those about him. They will recognize Nero of ancient days. But under the blessed
conditions of that time, if he will hear the Son's voice, he will be assisted to
righteous conditions — hewill be given the blessings of restitution processes, an
opportunity to raising up to life, to an appreciation of what is right and wrong, and
if he chooses the right, chooses to be on God's side, he may make progress up out
of his degraded condition to the full human perfection provided in the glorious
resurrection for the obedient of the world. (Great applause)
DR. EATON'S REPLY
Dr. Eaton, in rising to address the audience, in
support of the negative of the proposition, said: Our brother started out by
undertaking to show that there were no resurrections until Christ. All that is
needed to reply to that is to quote the statement concerning Lazarus, "whom he
raised from the dead." (John 12: 1) He said, "Do you suppose God brought
Lazarus back from paradise?" Well, Paul went to paradise and he came back and
told us of it. "I knew a man who was carried to paradise and saw things which
were not lawful to be uttered." What did he come back for? He went to paradise
and to heaven, and came back. That is no argument. How do I know what the
Lord would do? I do know the Lord did not permit Paul to tell anything about
what he saw. And if you run through the Scriptures you will find quite a number
of people who have been permitted to go through the experience we call death,
and come back again. One was Lazarus, and there were several others — Samuel,
for instance, who came back at the call of God, as I believe. But not one of them
have ever been pennitted to describe what they saw, nor to describe the heavenly
state. They have only been permitted to characterize it, as Paul said, "Eye hath not
seen nor ear heard, neither hath it entered the heart of man, the things which God
hath prepared for them that love Him." If Paul was not in a condition to know
whether he was there in the body or out of it, he certainly was not in a fit
condition to describe what he saw. The fact that Lazarus said nothing, proves
nothing. He was dead, and Christ raised him from the dead, as it is plainly said.
Our brother has taught that the disciples went everywhere preaching about the
resurrection; the resurrection, the resurrection, was their great theme. I say, no;
the resurrection of Jesus Christ was the great theme! (Applause) They preached it
on Pentecost, to 3,000 people who surrendered and accepted the truth. The next
day Peter went up to the temple and healed a man, and began to preach to the
multitude which gathered, and again he preached the resurrection of Jesus Christ
from the dead. On the third day they put him in prison, and when he came out and
was permitted to address the Sanhedrin he preached the resurrection of Christ
ONLY CHRIST'S RESURRECTION
Wherever Paul went he said nothing about the resurrection of ourselves, so far as
I can remember, but every place he preached the resurrection of Jesus Christ. That
is what the resurrection is. The Scriptures do not put any special stress or
importance on the resurrection of our body. We have only one chapter in the
Bible, the 15th of First Corinthians, that has anything about it particularly, but
more than 200 places speaking of the resurrection of Christ. At Athens, before the
cultured intellectual Greeks, Paul preached the resurrection of Jesus Christ from
If my brother will now turn to the first chapter of First Peter and quote us once
more on this subject: "Blessed be God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who
hath begotten us again to a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the
dead." He taught you tonight that we are begotten by the resurrection from the
dead! "To an inheritance, incorruptible, undefiled, and that fadeth not away,
reserved in heaven for you who are kept by the power of God, through faith unto
salvation, ready to be revealed in the last time." What is ready to be revealed?
Let us see what the last time is, then. "Redeemed by the precious blood of Christ,
who verily was foreordained from the foundation of the world, but was
manifested in these last times."
Salvation was revealed in the last time, and we are now in this last time — the
last we shall ever see. Christ's salvation is proclaimed now. "Little children," says
John, "it is the last time," meaning by that it is the last dispensation of this world's
history. This is the time in which salvation is to be proclaimed. "Begotten again to
a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead to an inheritance
reserved in heaven for you who are kept by the power of God through faith unto
salvation ready to be revealed in the last time." That was in the millennial age!
Wait until the next age comes! No, that is not in any millennial age. It is now, in
the last time: "And it will come to pass in the last time that I will pour out my
spirit upon all flesh." That is what Peter quoted from Joel at Pentecost, and which
he said was fulfilled then. "God who at sundry times and in divers manner spake
by the prophets hath in these last days spoken unto us by His Son." Not in the last
days of any special dispensation, but in the last dispensation that this world will
ever see. There is none other coming. Better get ready for the jubilee now!
(Laughter and applause)
It is sheer nonsense to talk about a millennial age in which a person is going to be
a thousand years getting saved, sliding along, raising a little higher and higher,
evoluting, evolving, and by and by getting saved! (Applause) If the great God in
heaven cannot save a man in the twinkling of an eye He is not Almighty!
NOT SAVED BY A MORTGAGE
My brother says there is no salvation in the present time. No one is saved now.
That is very strange doctrine. We do not Icnow how a man can say that in the face
of all the declarations — that one only has a mortgage on his salvation (laughter)
and gets the proof of it in the millennial age! The devil has got a mortgage on
some fellows (laughter) but the Lord does not have to save people by a mortgage.
He can save them now! "Ye shall seek Me, and find Me, when ye shall search for
Me with all your heart. " What does that mean? That you cannot find GOd now?
He would tell you that was written by Jeremiah to the people in captivity, and
doesn't mean us! Or he would tell us that the prayer of David is only prophecy, to
be fulfilled in some future time, or that the books of the Pentateuch apply only to
the Jews, and the book of Romans was written to the Romans, and none but the
Romans can get anything out of it — although I notice that our brother gets a
good deal out of it when he wants to! (Applause, in which Pastor Russell joined)
It is all very well to make a selection of texts just when they suit your argument!
If that is the case, we get no revelation from the Word of God, and might as well
close it up. You cannot cheat me out of the Fifty-first Psalm or the Thirty-second
Psalm, where the prophet praises God that his sins are forgiven, and that his soul
is saved. You cannot cheat me out of the provisions of God's grace, by saying it
was written at such a time and to such a people. The great truths are applicable to
all people. "Come unto Me all ye that labor and are heavy-laden, and I will give
you rest," said Jesus. That was spoken to the Jews, one of the most comforting
promises ever made to men, and one we hold now, under which we can have this
great salvation. His spirit witnesseth with our spirit that we are children of God.
Not children by and by, because we are not waiting for any millennial age to find
out whether we are going to be His children.
I was rather in hope that this millennial business was not going to complicate
matters tonight, but it is still cropping out, and we can't get rid of it. (General
applause) He says if Christ be not raised, then all are perished. I wonder what was
the deeper meaning of Paul in that statement, "If Christ be not raised, then all are
perished." That there is no atonement; if no atonement you can go back logically
to the fact that there is no Christ;
that there was no sacrifice for sins; that there was no arrangement for salvation,
and that there was no God.
RESURRECTION A FIXED FACT
The resurrection of our Lord Jesus settled and fixed as a fact that Jesus Christ
was God's Son. Paul says, "If thou wilt confess with thy mouth and believe with
thy heart, thou shalt be saved." What was he to confess? If Christ was dead, not
resurrected, then there was no sacrifice, no redemption, nothing to believe; but the
man who believes that Christ was raised believes the whole system of the logical
belief; on the principle that the greater includes the less, that the last great link
binds the whole chain together, so if he believes that Christ was raised from the
dead he believes the whole theological system. If Christ is not raised from the
dead there is no Paradise, heaven, hades, Tartarus, life or immortality.
Paul does not belittle Christ; his is a tremendous argument. But this whole
argument of our brother's belittles Christ, and when he puts him on a throne in a
millennial age-time of blessing, he makes Him a little Napoleon or Caesar.
(Laughter) He tells us about this gospel age, and that it is simply a select few, a
small class, and quotes from that remarkable utterance of James in the 15th
chapter of Acts, at the first council of the apostles at Jerusalem, as to what they
would do with the new heathen converts.
All. the others had spoken, and James winds up the argument: "Simon hath
declared how first God visited the Gentiles, to take out of them a people for his
name." With that one sentence my brother interprets the whole Bible, as though
the great thought was that we have no other business in this world, no other care,
than to take out a preacher or a minister here and there to do the work of the
millennial age. (Laughter) The whole thing turns on that!
If he had read on to the next verse he would have seen differently. James quotes
from the prophet: "And to this agree the words of the prophet. After this I will
return, and build again the tabernacle of David, which is fallen down, and will
build again the ruins thereof and set it up, that the residue of men might seek after
the Lord, that is, every other man upon the face of the earth (tumultuous applause
broke the speaker's utterance, as the entire audience recognized that the point was
in favor of the opponent), and all the Gentiles, upon whom my name is called,
may seek the Lord." (Great applause)
REPUDIATES THE TEACHING
Now, I say, friends, I repudiate that teaching, and calling it the gospel is a
misnomer; and saying that we are saved, a resurrection, which is not the
resurrection of Christ, but our resurrection, is all wrong. The great atonement, the
Son of God, the second person in the glorious Trinity, is entirely forgotten. The
process is a mechanical one in his mind, it is a work accomplished by a great
institutional movement, the millennium, and Christ is belittled, the Holy Ghost is
belittled, pentecost is belittled. I know what I am talking about, for I have read the
brother's writings, and he says nothing about pentecost in the way it ought to be
presented. It is not set forth as a birth, the inauguration of the kingdom of God on
earth, the outpouring of the spirit, salvation of three thousand the first day and two
thousand the next, the birth of the church, the spreading of the truth from
Jerusalem and through the whole earth.
The whole thing is belittled. He would belittle Christ's own words, "The spirit of
the Lord is upon me," etc. He says that does not occur now; no broken hearts are
being healed in this gospel age, no prisoners set free; they are not being liberated
now and never have been, and are to wait till the millennial age. When Jesus
quoted those words, and sat down. He said: "This day is this scripture fulfilled in
your ears!" (Applause)
Christ is saving the people by the hundred thousand! He has saved me, and I am
able to put my hand upon my heart and look to the judgment throne of heaven and
say, "Therefore being justified by faith, I have peace with God through our Lord
Jesus Christ." I shall never in any millennial age be able to say that more clearly
than now. He is saving the lame by putting something into their souls that will
make them walk free from temptation; He is saving the prisoners, by freeing them
from sins and giving them the blessings of salvation. Those were His miracles,
and He is fulfilling them still today. The great gospel of Jesus Christ is going to
the end of the world. When I was a boy I used to hear the people praying, "Lord
open the doors of the heathen world." Within 25 years the door of every heathen
land has been opened to the human race. There is scarcely a nation that is not
FIFTEEN MILLIONS WAITING
And Bishop Thobum has told us at our conference two weeks ago that he had
baptized many persons in that little district in India; and when he asked a minister
how many of the people there were who would be baptized if they had the
opportunity, I think he said 15,000,000 were ready for baptizing if we could give
it. The world wants to be saved, if we will stop talking salvation after death, and
get the work of saving done. It will be saved if we will stop the wickedness of the
dark ages, that our brother referred
to, and with which I heartily agree. It will be stopped if the churches will go to
work, as they are now doing, awake to their duty. Our brother doesn't want to see
them saved. He wouldn't give a penny to have the world saved, just because he
has this theory that a few people are to be ministers and priests for the millennial
age. If you pin your faith on the millennium you will never find any millennial
age. And if I don't show you on Thursday night that the whole millennial business
is sheer and absolute nonsense, then I am a fool! (General applause)
A very important part of this discussion is, what are we going to do about
Lazarus and the rich man? (Laughter) I have asked night after night for his
explanation, and I haven't got it yet. He has refused thus far to give his
interpretation, but I have it in print. Now, this is important. If there is probation
after death, it is in the intermediate state, and the theory of the rich man and
Lazarus settles it. If there is any soul sleeping after death, the story of the rich
man and Lazarus ought to settle it. But there is no soul-sleeping after death, nor is
there any probation after death. Jesus said that very plainly. Ourbrother feels the
force of that; there is no question about it. He feels that the rich man and Lazarus
is fatal to his whole doctrine, and if he cannot get some mythical interpretation, or
some institutional interpretation, or ecclesiastical interpretation, then his theory is
hit square in the face.
There is a plain story of two persons, a good and a bad man. My brother starts out
by saying he sees no reason why this rich man should be damned. I am going to
readjust what he said: "While this is stated as a parable, it is generally treated as a
literal statement." It reads as a literal statement in the Scriptures; but I am willing
to treat it either way, to suit him. My brother states that this rich man went to
hades because he was rich and had enjoyed many favors.
THREE REASONS GIVEN
Why, there are three reasons given why he went to hades: First, because, having
riches, he loved them, his heart was set upon them, as illustrated in the case of
every rich man in the Scriptures, from Achan, who stole the wedge of gold, to
Judas, who sold his master. Second, Lazarus, covered with sores, was not relieved
by him. The third, that he rejected Moses and the prophets, which God had given
to save his soul. Now, my brother, if you will interpret Scriptures that way and
publish that, you are not a safe leader of men! (Laughter) He says we don't know
that Lazarus was carried to Abraham's bosom. That he was a Jew was enough;
there is no other reason to be given. "The coveted place in Abraham's bosom, if
literal, would not take in many of the millions of the world." I admit that not very
many hundred millions could get there, but can he dispose of Scripture that way?
The Lord referred to Abraham's bosom because it was a general phrase of speech.
Among the Jews it was well known as a way of referring to future bliss, as much
so as the word heaven is among the people of this city. But why consider
"In a parable the thing said is never the thing meant!" Think of that! Do you
believe that, you are not a safe leader of men the Good Samaritan! (Laughter) If
the Good Samaritan parable doesn't mean what it says it doesn't mean anything.
Try it on the four great parables of Luke, the Good Samaritan, the Rich Man and
Lazarus, the Importunate Widow and the Prodigal Son. They all mean exactly
what they say. But our brother says it does not mean what it says, and quotes the
parable of the wheat and the tares, which doesn't mean what it says, I admit.
(Great applause) Do you know what you are cheering for? (Voices, Yes, sir!) I
merely meant that while in a parable it is not true that the thing said is never the
thing meant, always, it is generally the thing said that is meant.
I deny that Luke ever intended this parable to be a figurative expression.
Matthew was always giving parables about the kingdom, and you can always
attach an ethical meaning or an organizational meaning, or a figurative meaning
to the things he wrote. He did not know very much about individuals or
characters; his writing is all about the kingdom. Matthew was the great
millennialist; he cherished the ideas of the Jews being restored to their dominion,
and makes kingdom out of everything. But Luke wrote for the Greeks, who
adored character and worshipped the idea of the individual, and Luke records
Jesus Christ as the characteristic man. He disregards a great deal of his divinity.
Matthew writes of the centurion, "Surely this was the Son of God." Luke doesn't
write it that way. He writes, "Surely this was a righteous man! "
INTERPRETING THE PARABLE
This parable is simply wasted and evaporated by giving it the interpretation our
brother does. He says the rich man was the Jewish nation, having God's promises,
and given royal favors, and under the law of God, and Lazarus was the Gentiles,
without favor, and in a sin, sick condition because of God's disregard.
Why didn't he say that the rich man is the great heathen world, with its power and
armies and regal authority. If there is any parable that is the way to interpret it.
Then I should say that Lazarus, if there is any place on the green earth that he
would be Judaism, because Lazarus was a Jew, and for nearly 4,000 years they
had been under the heel of the great powers of the world. You see, my
interpretation is just like his, and just as foolish as his is. There is not an atom of
sense in either of them. The fact is that that is a tremendous story when Christ our
Lord represents the condition of hades, with its dark gulf, rolling its surges
between Tartarus and Paradise, and a soul sent to Tartarus for evil use of wealth,
and another godlike person found in Abraham's bosom. There is a great moral
lesson for every sinner in Allegheny. The question of probation after death is
settled by that parable. There is a tremendous difficulty before the person who can
make texts slip and slide everywhere, as our brother does. If that is an honest
interpretation of the Bible, then I do not know right from wrong. (Great applause)
He talks a good deal about the thief in paradise, and tells us that paradise was in
Eden — that there was no paradise for the thief to go to. Then where did Paul go?
I wonder that people follow that sort of interpretation. I do not know how this
brother dares to stand before this audience and talk about another chance. I dare
not take so tremendous a responsibility upon my hands. I have preached from the
beginning of my ministry that Jesus Christ was a great Saviour, the Son of God,
who died for the sins of the whole world, and I preach that He will save now, with
a precious salvation. We are saved now with the power of Jesus Christ and the
Holy Ghost. There is no wisdom nor device nor knowledge in sheol, whither thou
goest. These words are carefully selected by the Holy Ghost to indicate that there
is no means of salvation in sheol. Do it now, for this is your last chancel
PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF PROPHECY
Pastor Russell said in reply:
I had hoped that we should have heard more from Brother Eaton respecting the
resurrection. What I have to say about the last days and last time of this age shall
be said on Thursday evening. Respecting the holy spirit, I do not think our brother
has read what we have to say about this, for we have said a great deal concerning
the spirit and its work. I shall be pleased to send him a copy of Vol. V of the
"Millennial Dawn" series, in which this matter is treated.
We fully agree with our brother that there was a partial fulfillment of Isa. 61, at
our Lord's first advent, but there is much yet to be fulfilled, for our Lord did not
then open the prison doors and release the prisoners, according to the prophecy.
There are blessings coming to you and me now, in a spiritual way, but these are
not all that is contemplated in this text. In Acts 3: 19, the Apostle Peter tells us
that at the Lord's second advent will be the time for the general blotting out of
sins against the race of mankind, as the opportunity for salvation is given them
fully. We have a measure of release now, and we thank God for it. The brother
cannot extol the privilege too highly to suit me; but the great mass of the world is
still the groaning creation. The Lord's consecrated in Pittsburgh and Allegheny
are but a small proportion of the population in these cities. The mass of them in
these two of the most favored of the cities in the world, are still groaning in
darkness, ignorance and slavery to sin, "waiting," as the apostle declares, "for the
manifestation of the sons of God."
In the glorious millennial age not merely will the holy spirit come upon the few,
not merely upon the "servants and handmaidens" of Joel's prophecy, but upon "all
flesh." The prophet makes a distinction, saying that the former class shall have the
Holy Spirit "in those days," and "all flesh" shall have its privileges "after those
Our brother quoted from Peter, that we are begotten again, "unto a lively hope,"
but the proper translation would be "a hope of life, by the resurrection of the
dead." We have a hope of life, a hope of resurrection now, and are waiting for its
fulfillment when salvation shall be revealed in us at the end of the trial time of
this gospel age. (Applause)
NOT A BASIS OF DOCTRINE
Our dear brother differs from some of the standards of Methodism in respect to
the meaning of parables. He is forced, you see, to lay all the stress of his argument
upon this parable of the rich man and Lazarus, which we shall take up Thursday
night. Dr. Adam Clark was a fairly authoritative Methodist (laughter and
applause) and Dr. Adam Clark says, "A parable shall never be used for the basis
of a doctrine!" (Loud applause) If there is nothing better to offer than a parable,
better keep quiet! (Applause) In our brother's emphatic remarks about the thief in
Paradise, I notice that he adds to the word of God considerable things that are not
in the record at all. I am not charging our dear brother with any intentional
duplicity. I believe the dear brother to be honest, as I also am, but we need to have
our minds wide open, to see what the Lord hath spoken. It is not for Brother Eaton
or myself to speak by inspiration tonight; the record is in God's word.
Dr. Eaton closed by saying:
I had no speech prepared for tonight. I came knowing that our brother was going
to affirm a marvelous change at the resurrection, and knowing that I had a decided
opinion to the contrary, and that is all I do know about it. I don't think our brother
knows any more. I believe in the resurrection. "It is sown in corruption; it is raised
in incorruption." That it is something more than the body. I do not believe that the
same body which goes into the tomb will rise, but I do believe that something
connected with our personality will be the basis of resurrection, and that
something is not, to my mind, the thing that is dead. Of course, there is great
difficulty in going before an audience in talking about the abstruse and difficult
things of the resurrection of the human body. I shall not please my brother with
what I shall say, and he does not please me with what he says; and perhaps neither
of us will please anybody else. Like a seed that is sown and roots, there comes
forth another, not identical, not the articles, but an identity, and that identity does
not die. There is something about death that is not death in the sense of
annihilation. Death never meant annihilation, so far as I know.
REASON OF PETER'S JOY
The other night he said that Peter was glad that Jesus came out of hades. Was that
why Peter was so enthusiastic? No. He was glad because Jesus was risen, the
great miracle of the New Testament had taken place — notthe greatest miracle in
human history, by any means, but the great event of our Savior's career. If that is
true, the rest is true. If false, the rest is false.
My brother said the other night, if a sinner did not have eternal life, how could he
be eternally tormented? He could not be if eternal life meant immortality, but it is
not immortality at all. Eternal life is the gift of God, but immortality is the life of
the soul; not that the soul is said to be immortal but the soul will never perish
because of anything in the soul itself There is no time limit for the soul, no device
that will work its overthrow. The soul will live always. That is all I know about
immortality. God gave it to the race at the beginning, but eternal life is altogether
It is astounding that such men as Gladstone and Lyman Abbott and Joseph Edgar
Beet have mixed up those two ideas, that eternal life and immortality mean the
same thing. He does not differentiate between eternal life and immortality. Devils
are immortal until something happens to kill them. (Applause from Pastor
Russell) Don't miss the point now. There is nothing in themselves that will work
to their killing. No being has power to destroy his own soul by any device that
God has given. He made them to live — a living soul. They do not die, nor sleep
in the grave. Some of the Sadducees believe that, and my brother is a Sadducee!
(Laughter) A man who does not believe in spirit or immortality, but that one has
to wait in the grave until the resurrection! Jesus condemned that position, and
referred to Moses at the burning bush, and the Lord's words, "I am the God of
Abraham, Isaac and Jacob." He is not the God of the dead, but of the living."
LAST BUT ONE OF BIBLICAL
DEBATESBETWEEN DR. EATON
AND PASTOR C. T. RUSSELL
Head of the Bible House Congregation
Maintains that Object of Christ's Advents
is Blessing to All
ATTENDANCE CONTINUES LARGE
REPRINTED FROM THE GAZETTE OF OCTOBER 30
The last but one of the series of debates on the teachings of the scriptures
between Pastor C. T. Russell of the Bible House congregation and the Rev. Dr. E.
L. Eaton of the North Avenue Methodist Episcopal church, Allegheny, took place
last evening at Carnegie Music hall, Allegheny, before one of the largest
audiences that has ever filled that auditorium.
The interest, which has been strong in the discussion from the start, has been
augmented as the series went on, and when the final proposition comes up next
Sunday at 3 p. m., it is assured that the crowds of last night and former night will
be outdone, if that is possible.
The Rev. Eli Miller was the selected chairman of
last evening's meeting. Before the debate started 15 minutes were given to
The subject of last evening was: "The scriptures clearly teach that the second
coming of Christ will precede the millennium; and that the object of both — the
second coming and the millennium — is the blessing of all the families of the
This was affirmed by Pastor Russell, who opened the debate with a 50-minute
address. Dr. Eaton followed in the negative and then each spoke for 10 minutes in
reply to the other. Pastor Russell in opening said:
CHRIST'S SECOND COMING ADMITTED
It will not be necessary for me to even attempt to quote the large number of
Scriptures which declare that our Lord is coming again. The second coming of our
Lord is well established in the Scriptures by many texts, and this is not the subject
under discussion this evening. The second coming is admitted by both parties.
The question is respecting the object of our Lord's coming. The view that I
present is that our Lord will come before the millennium and that the work which
will follow His coming will be a great blessing to the world, the millennial
blessings that are promised in the Scriptures. It may not be amiss to remember a
couple of texts, however, which bear upon this subject.
The Apostle John writes, "Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not
yet appear what we shall be, but when He shall appear we know that we shall be
like Him, for we shall see Him as He is." That is the strong consolation of the
Scriptures; we shall be like the Lord, as we read from First Corinthians 15, the
other evening, "We shall be changed, because flesh and blood cannot inherit the
kingdom of God; therefore all who will be inheritors of that kingdom, who shall
be joint heirs with the Lord Jesus Christ, must first experience this resurrection,
change from animal conditions to spiritual." That which is bom of the flesh is
flesh, and that which is born of the spirit is spirit," as our Redeemer declared. We
must be born again; begotten of the spirit now, and in resurrection power born of
the spirit, if we shall share with our Lord in the wonderful kingdom which He has
promised to them that love Him, this kingdom for which you and I and all God's
people for 1,800 years have been praying, "Thy kingdom come, thy will be done
on earth as it is done in heaven."
Again, we remember our Lord's words, "I go to prepare a place for you, and if I
go and prepare a place for you I will come again and receive you unto myself, that
where I am there ye may be also." Glorious promise! We are looking for that
time, the second coming of the Lord, when we shall receive this great blessing of
a share in the kingdom. Our brother has conceded the point that the Scriptures
teach nothing respecting the saints of God or anyone else going to heaven at any
time preceding the second coming of the Lord. "No man hath ascended up to
heaven, but the Son of man that come down from heaven." "David is not ascended
to heaven," says Peter, nor any others who have died. They are waiting in death,
waiting for the awakening time, waiting for the morning, when the Lord Jesus, as
the bright and morning star, and as the sun of righteousness, with healing in His
beams, shall arise, to bring blessing to all the families of the earth.
WHAT THE SCRIPTURES TEACH
The Scriptures teach that there will be wide blessing throughout the world at the
time of our Lord's second coming, that is to say, following His second advent, and
that these blessings are to be to all the families of the earth, and not as during this
Gospel age, confined to a special few who have ears to hear and hearts to
understand, 'Blessed are your eyes, for they see, and your ears, for they hear," but
there are many who have not this sight and hearing, for, the Apostle says, "The
god of this world (Satan) hath blinded the minds of them that believe not, lest the
light of the goodness of God should shine unto them." But the time also is
promised, according to the Prophet, "when the blind eyes shall be opened, and the
deaf ears unstopped, and it shall be unto the Lord for a name and for an
everlasting sign, that shall not be cut off" We are not preaching universal
salvation. We wish to make this clear. Universalism proposes that everyone shall
be saved eternally. It is not the teaching of the Scriptures; which declare that
"There is no other name given under heaven or amongst men whereby we must be
saved" but the name of Jesus.
To our understanding none but those who accept Christ and form character are fit
for the kingdom or for any other everlasting condition of blessing; that God has
never promised everlasting life to any except those who do fonn character, and
who form it on the basis of faith in His Son. Our position is that the Scriptures
teach that in the millennial age all shall know, in order that they may believe, as
the apostle declares, "God, our Savior, will have all men to be saved and come to
the knowledge of the truth, for there is one God and one Mediator between God
and man, the man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself a ransom for all to be testified
in due time." "Not testified to all now, because all have not the ears to hear.
Whosoever hath an ear to hear, let him hear." Do not keep it back from anybody;
let everybody who
has a hearing ear have it, and let him be blessed; but many are not in a condition
to know God's proposition at present. In due time all shall have that glorious
WHICH WILL COME FIRST?
Then comes the question. Will this millennial blessing and kingdom precede the
second coming of our Lord? Could it do so? That is the thought that a great many
have, that God commissioned the church to convert the world, and after that
conversion the Lord will come and say, "Well done, as well done as I could have
done Myself" But, dear friends, nearly nineteen hundred years have passed since
the gospel began; nearly nineteen hundred years since Pentecost, and what do we
see? Evidences that the church could convert the world? We answer, no. Thank
God, there is some impression made upon the world; we are glad of it. As our
Lord said, we are lights in the world, and the light reproves the darkness and has a
little effect here and there; but the number on the Lord's side is comparatively
small; the number of saints is still very much of a minority, and if you and I have
any hope that there is anything we could do to bring in the millennium, it is
because we have not examined the subject properly.
Consider how many are converted every year, and then tell me how far we shall
be off in thousands of millions of years from the world's conversion. The number
of heathen in the world is away out of proportion to the number of converts. The
births, according to the flesh, keep right along, but the births according to the
spirit are limited and cannot be transmitted from father to son. In these nineteen
hundred years we have no encouragement that the church is able to bring in the
conditions for which we are praying, "Thy kingdom come." The church is the
kingdom in the embryo sense; the class which God is taking out as a people for
his name, and this church, when glorified with full kingdom power and honor,
shall bless the families of the earth, when it is all gathered out.
It is the seed of Abraham, as Paul declared in Galatians 2: 29, "Then are ye
Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise." What was the promise? The
promise was that the seed should bless all the families of the earth. The seed is not
yet complete; therefore, the blessing of the families of the earth is not begun. The
glorification of this class is first necessary, then the knowledge of the Lord shall
fill the whole earth as the waters cover the deep; then the kingdom shall have
come, and the Lord's will begun to be accomplished on earth as in heaven.
ALLEGHENY MORALLY GOOD
But let me suggest that if the whole heathen world were converted to as good a
condition as this city of Allegheny — andfrom my standpoint of judgment
Allegheny is one of the most moral and religions cities in the world — howfar
would it be from that condition which the Lord declares shall obtain? You haven't
any hope of turning the whole world in the present time to any better condition
than we have here, and no man has the power to produce any better condition
now. Well, then, is God's will done in Allegheny as it is done in heaven? No,
most assuredly. Then it is necessary for the kingdom to crush out the various evils
in the world, to bind Satan, that he shall deceive the nations no more, before the
promised blessings shall fill the whole earth and bring the intended restitution.
Notice some Scriptures which refer to the condition of the world at the second
advent. In Matthew 24, the Lord gives us a picture of the whole gospel age, down
to its end, and right down at the close there is no suggestion of the world being
converted, but the very opposite. At the close of that prophecy He tells of
deceiving things, that would deceive, if possible, the very elect, and bids us be on
our guard, to hold fast the precious word. His word is again, "When the Son of
Man Cometh, shall He find faith on the earth?" The intimation is that faith will
somehow or other be on the decrease at that time. So we find it.
Higher criticism, evolution, worldly philosophy are undennining the faith of
God's people, so that they are not believing nearly as much as their fathers did of
God, His power and His character. Again, the words of the apostle, "Evil men and
seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived." He is
speaking of seduction from the faith of the gospel. Higher criticism is seducing in
our day, and various delusions are drawing aside from the faith. The apostle
points to this as evidence of conditions at the end of the age. He writes to
Timothy, "In the last days (of the age) perilous times shall come" — notthe world
converted and everybody on the Lord's side.
THE PARABLE OF THE TALENTS
Our Lord pictured how it would be in the end of the age. The parable of the
talents and the parable of the pounds. The nobleman distributed his possessions to
his servants, and went into a far country. What did he go into a far country for?
"To receive for himself a kingdom — andto return." The Lord was drawing an
illustration from Herod's course, who went to Rome to be invested with authority
as king; and as Herod, when he came back, rewarded those who would be faithful
to him and punished those who were unfaithful, so the
Lord illustrates His departure, into heaven itself, leaving the talents of opportunity
with His people, saying, "Occupy till I come." Then he tells us about the
nobleman's return, and the calling of the servants-not the world — andreckoning
I trust many of you are servants of the Lord, who have received pounds and
talents of the Lord, who are occupying and using these to serve His cause, and
that when the Lord shall reckon with us we shall prove ourselves faithful servants,
having profited by the stewardship, and may thus receive the Lord's
commendation, "Well done, good and faithful servant; enter into the joy of thy
Lord. Thou hast been faithful over a few things. I will make thee ruler over many
things." Ruler over what? Some one says everything is to be destroyed. Not so.
The world will be to rule over, to be brought into harmony with God. The
knowledge of the Lord is to be made to fill the whole earth, and God is going to
use instruments in accomplishing this work.
In one of these parables the Lord speaks of ruling over cities. Where are they?
The thought is that those who are the Lord's servants in this gospel age, if they use
their talents, in due time, when He returns, having received the investiture of His
kingdom. He shall establish the kingdom, and these faithful ones shall be
associated in it for the advancement of the world. As the Scriptures express it,
"They shall be kings and priests unto God, and shall reign with Him a thousand
ERROR ABOUT JUDGMENT DAY
That brings us to the thought that the Scriptures speak of this work during the
millennial age as a judgment work. Unfortunately a very serious error has crept
into the minds of many, and they speak of the day of judgment as though it were a
day of damnation. They take a great many unscriptural ideas concerning it, as
Brother Talmage described it — thatChrist would descend in glory and sit upon
the rim of a cloud, and the earth would turn upon its axis and a few here and there
would come to Him, while to the world in general He would say, "Damn you!
Damn you!" An awful picture for a Christian minister to present to his hearers!
There are very hazy ideas in the minds of people in general concerning this day of
judgment. The Scriptural view is that it is the whole millennial age, the thousand-
year judgment day, for "a day with the Lord is as a thousand years." During that
thousand-year day the whole world is to be judged; not judged in the way that
Brother Talmage thought, but with righteous judgment. We use the word judge in
the sense of trial — that is the ordinary thought in the word.
One must be tried before being sentenced, and this thought is contained in the
Scriptural use of the word judgment. During the gospel age all of the Lord's
people are on trial, on judgment; there is the judgment day before the Lord, and
we shall be required to give an account. The reckoning will be totaled up at the
end of the trial, and a decision passed. It is very nice to speak about God saving a
man instantly, but even in the Methodist church they have a few months'
probation before a person will be received into that earthly church. (Laughter and
How about receiving a man into the glorified church? Do you not think that it
will take time for each individual to develop character in order to become
members of the little flock? Will it not need some probationary experience first?
Is not the Lord having us now in our various trials and difficulties under a process
of preparation, to make us "meet for the inheritance of the saints in light," as the
PAST SINS DO NOT COUNT
When you started on your trial, when all Christians started on their trial, were
they tried for the sins that .are past? Are they being tried now for the sins that are
passed? No, God mercifully forgives your sins; they were committed in ignorance
and weakness before you knew Him. They are not counted against you at all. As
the apostle speaks of the blessing of God concerning the "sins that are past
through His forbearance." You are forgiven, the Lord's mercy is exercised toward
you, and you hear of His pardon; "Blessed is the man whose sins are forgiven,
whose transgression is covered!" Then how will it be with the world? He is the
same God, He is no respector of persons, that He should forgive your sins that are
past, and should thrash all the others for their sins.
If you believe God exercised mercy toward you, and forgave you your sins, then
believe also that the Lord has a similar arrangement for the world. I am not
speaking of wilful sins; I understand that everyone wilfully sinning will receive
punishment to the extent of the wilfulness, but sins that are committed in
ignorance and blindness will be forgiven through the merit of Christ. For instance,
Peter says of those who crucified the Lord: "I wot that in ignorance ye did it, as
did also your rulers." God was able to forgive them, and our Lord's prayer was:
"Father, forgive them, they know not what they do." That is the kind of a God we
love; that is the God of the Scriptures, and that is the reason we love and worship
and appreciate Him. He is a merciful God, that He should be reverenced, as the
Psalmist says. (Applause)
The world, then, is not going to be on judgment for
the sins that are past. To a certain extent every sin that everyone commits has an
effect upon the individual at the time. You know how weaknesses and sins of
youth have been entailed by many down to their gray hairs. You know they have
suffered more or less, although they had the forgiveness of the Lord. So with the
whole world. The world, in proportion as they degraded themselves, have in
themselves the punishment for their sins, a certain degradation, and during the
millennial age, when they come to the great uplifting time that God has promised
through Jesus, those degraded ones will have that much more of a journey to go
before they shall get back to that justified, perfect condition which must be
attained before they will be approved in God's sight.
RESTITUTION REQUIRES TIME
Restitution will require that time and effort on their part be expended, and thus
throughout all their judgment-trial time they will be required to overcome the
weaknesses and imperfections until they have attained the end of the millennial
age. The Scriptures refer to this day of judgment in a very different way than that
which most people today regard it. The proper thought is that God is going to
offer to the world eternal life, if when they come to a knowledge of Him they
choose to render obedience to Him. Knowledge is the first pre-requisite; no man
shall be saved in ignorance.
When he comes to the knowledge of the truth, and is obedient to it, in that
proportion he may have divine favor. This principle is applicable now, to all who
hear, and will be in operation upon the world when they shall come to know God
as He really is, to know that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, to
realize God's mercy, and I believe it will reach many of their hearts, and when
they rightly divide between truth and error, light and darkness, the majority of
people will want to choose the right! (Loud applause)
Nothing in the Scriptures tells us what will be the proportion of those who will
finally reject and how many will finally accept, but we do know that "The gift of
God is eternal life" only for those who love and serve and obey Him, and those
who will not have this King to reign over them shall eventually die the second
death, from which there is no recovery. That was the case in the parable. After the
nobleman had dealt with his servants he turned to his enemies: "Bring hither mine
enemies, and slay them."
There will be hundreds and thousands of millions, nearly the whole world, in this
attitude of opposition toward God, for comparatively few, a little flock, are the
Lord's servants. And when they are brought up in the millennial age they will be
given the opportunity to decide whether they are enemies of Him or not. Then we
shall find the sword of the Lord, the word of truth, shall slay them; it shall
discover the secret springs of their hearts and those who realize Him as their
Master and accept Him as such, will be permitted to attain the full measure of
favor the Lord has promised; and those who reject and resist the opportunities will
be cut off, as the prophet has declared: "A sinner that is an hundred years shall be
THE PROPHECY OF DAVID
David prophesied of the judgment day in First Chronicles 16: 31-34. Notice how
David was glad there was a judgment day. "Let the heavens be glad and the earth
rejoice, and let men say among the nations, °The Lord reigneth; ' let the sea roar
and the fulness thereof; let the fields rejoice, and all that is therein; then shall the
trees of the wood sang at the presence of the Lord, because He cometh to judge
the earth." They did not have the thought that judgment would mean the
damnation of nearly everybody; they longed for the judgment time, because it
signified a time of deliverance and blessing. In the olden time they had their
judges, who came amongst them for deliverance and blessing, and now God has
proposed to raise up the great antitypical judge, the Lord Jesus and the church His
body, that this great judge shall bless all the people with the wise government that
is necessary for their uplift.
So we read again that "God hath appointed a day" — a future day — "in the
which He will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom He hath
ordained" — and the word righteousness here signifies equitable, just, in accord
with the foundation principles of God's character, which guarantees that the
ransom through Jesus Christ will be made fully applicable to every member of the
race of mankind. The world needs this great trial, to see whether they will have
life everlasting or choose death. If they want life they must choose it by
obedience. If they choose disobedience they will choose the penalty, and "the
wages of sin is death." (Applause)
Revelation gives a picture in the twentieth chapter of the millennial kingdom —
five different pictures of the same kingdom. The first verse opens by saying, "I
beheld thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them" —
tothe saints, the church, with the Lord, in the time of the blessing of the world.
Then he proceeds to tell how Satan will be bound, while the judgment is
proceeding; then the statement that the "dead world shall not live until the
thousand years are finished," which we discussed the last session. It will require
the thousand years to build
WORLD MUST BE CONQUERED
Some of them are very degraded; they will need much help before they will be
worthy of life, so that it could be properly said that God's will is done on earth as
it is done in heaven. That will shall not be perfectly done until He will have
conquered the world, then this statement of Revelation declares, "Every creature
in heaven and earth heard I, saying 'Blessing and glory and honor unto Him that
sitteth on the throne, and to the Lamb ! " Further down in the chapter we read of
the great white throne — the throne of purity and righteousness and equity,
equitable judgment — and of the opening of the books, the Books of Scriptures,
"and the dead shall be judged out of the things written in the books" — the dead
world, dead in the sense that God does not recognize them as having right to life,
dead in the sense that they have not the Son, who has the eternal life, and whom
they must have in order to possess it. These dead are to be judged — notwhile in
the grave, but while on trial before the judgment throne, Christ and the church.
This reminds us of the Lord's own statement, "My word shall judge them in the
last day." That will be the only standard of judgment then.
The parable of the sheep and the goats is another which refers to the millennial
age. The introduction shows that it does not belong to the gospel age at all. "When
the Son of man shall come in His glory" — He has not come in His glory yet — "
and all the holy angels with Him, then shall the Son of man sit upon the throne of
His glory, and before Him shall be gathered all nations" — in what sense? In the
sense that you and I stand before the great Judge every day in our trial — we are
under His observation. Then the parable goes on to show a division. The
judgment day will be the thousand years, and during that time some will be taking
their places at the right, and some at the left, and at the close of the day all the
sheep of the whole world will be gathered at the right hand, and all the goats of
mankind will be gathered at the left hand, and the Lord's decision for reward or
punishment will follow. But where is the church during that judgment of the
world? We answer in the Lord's words, "They shall sit with Me in My throne."
TROUBLE WILL PRECEDE LAST DAY
The judgment work shall be preceded by a great time of trouble, as declared by
Daniel — "God will take the kingdom and give it to the saints of the Most High."
Although the kingdom shall ultimately be one of peace and blessing, the usurping
prince now in
control must be overthrown, and with him all the social institutions which he has
projected and established, and in this work "there shall be a time of trouble such
as was not since there was a nation," declares the prophet, and our Lord confirms
that word and adds, "No, nor ever shall be."
Peter speaks of this time in figurative language, declaring, "The heavens being on
fire shall be dissolved; the earth also and the works that are therein shall be
burned up. The elements shall melt with fervent heat."
This highly figurative language expresses a similar thought to that we sometimes
use, when speaking of great financial or political disturbance, "It is getting very
hot! " But that the words are not literally understood, let me quote you the prophet
Zephaniah, "Wait ye upon Me, saith the Lord, until the day that I rise up to the
prey; for My determination is to gather the nations that I may assemble the
kingdoms, that I may pour upon them Mine indignation, even all My fierce anger,
for the whole earth shall be devoured with the fire of My jealousy" — that's the
kind of fire. The very next verse says, "Then shall I turn to the people a pure
language that they may call upon the name of the Lord, to serve Him with one
consent. (A storm of applause here interrupted the speaker.)
In Revelation 11, "The nations were angry, and Thy wrath is come" — they were
not converted then! — " and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and
Thy servants the prophets, and the saints, and them that fear Thy name small and
great." (Applause) This is at the end of this age, when the Lord takes to Himself
His great power and begins His reign. He has had the power ever since He rose
from the dead, when He said, "All power is given unto Me in heaven and in
earth," but it is one thing to have the power, and quite another thing to use it. In
Acts 3: 19-21, times of refreshing are spoken of as coming at the times of
restitution of all things spoken by the mouth of all the holy prophets, and which
are to be ministered by Christ whom the heaven is retaining until that glorious
time, when He shall come again. (Applause)
In Luke 27: 29, the Lord referred to Sodom and Gomorrah as destroyed by God's
wrath, because of wickedness, but the Lord also declares in Matthew 11: 23, that
"it shall be more tolerable for Sodom and Gomorrah in the day of judgment" than
for Capernaum. In other words, that it will be a tolerable time for Capernaum, and
a more tolerable time for Sodom — because of greater responsibility on the part
of the former. The Sodomites are to have a chance, and you can read at your
leisure concerning their opportunity in the sixteenth chapter of Ezekiel, verses 48
to 63. (Prolonged applause)
When Pastor Russell sat down. Dr. Eaton began his
reply which was as follows:
DR. EATON REPLIES TO OPPONENT
I find myself able to congratulate my brother on having recited a great deal of
Scripture, and a great deal of it just as I would have recited it myself, so I agree
with him in a great many things. He is a good deal less harmful tonight than he
has been in some of his utterances. (Laughter) However, most of the Scripture
that has been quoted is capable of a number of different interpretations, a great
deal of it is equivocal. We cannot settle a great question like this on Scripture that
is of that sort. He said not long ago that parables never mean what they say, and
he has demonstrated it tonight. (Laughter) "Now are we the children of God, and
it is not manifested what we shall be, but when it is manifested we shall be like
Him," says the revised American version. You have the revised version on sale,
my brother, and it would be a good thing to read it. (Laughter)
In interpreting Scriptures there are certain things one wants. First, common sense;
second, education; third, the holy spirit. Those are three pre-requi sites. But, in
addition to that, there are canons of interpretation that God has laid down, which
we cannot neglect. One is in relation to the word, "Take heed how ye hear," "Take
heed that no man deceive you," lest you fall, and speaking particularly to the
church at Thessalonica, which had gone daft on the millennial idea, Paul warns
them specially to take heed against the deceit of men. I can lead you anywhere,
and so can my brother, if you let your brains have a vacation in the meantime; but
if you are going to do your own thinking we cannot lead you anywhere. (Much
applause, in which Pastor Russell joined)
The second canon of interpretation is to interpret the figurative by the literal. You
have had a hundred texts tonight, and they are the standard of our brother's style
of interpretation — interpreting the literal by the figurative. It is all wrong. My
brother reversed the proper rule, and has gone off into that marvelous creation and
exhibition of ingeniousness which he has given us tonight. He is ingenious, his is
a marvelously ingenious mind, but the ingeniousness is a dangerous kind, when it
overthrows scriptural interpretation.
THE FIGURATIVE AND THE LITERAL
The first illustration we have of interpreting figurative Scripture is by Joseph,
with Pharaoh's dream. He interpreted seven lean kine coming out of the river as
meaning seven years of famine. So Daniel, in the vision of Nebuchadnezzar. He
interpreted the dream of an image in a literal way, and showed that it meant
kingdoms. Our Lord gives a number of illustrations; every time they asked him to
interpret any figurative story he always made it simply, a plain literal statement. If
you don't follow this method you will always be on a sidetrack or in the ditch.
(Applause) "These all died in faith, not having received the promises."
Our brother has quoted that time after time. They did receive the promises from
the days of Adam right down. What does the author of Hebrews mean when he
says they died in faith not having received? Not having received the fulfilment of
the promises, but seeing them afar off That is interpreting according to the
analogy of faith. Peter puts the same doctrine in this form: "No prophecy of
Scripture is of any private interpretation." You cannot let one doctrine of
statement stand out in antagonism to the rest. Take one Scriptural statement and
let that interpret the whole, as our brother does, when he takes the statement about
selecting a people for the Gentiles, and you get a great mix-up. (Applause)
Our Lord Jesus gave 50 parables, and never once mentioned a personal reign on
this earth. I defy any man to find anything in the 50 parables or anywhere else
where our Lord says anything about a person coming on this earth. I am not a
post-millennialist, nor an ante-millennialist, nor a pre-millennialist, but I am an
anti-millennialist, for I don't believe in any millennial nonsense at all.
CHRIST WILL COME AGAIN
Christ will certainly come again to this world. I am exactly agreed with our
brother there. He didn't come at the destruction of Jerusalem. He is coming in
person, not to reign, not to set up, but to deliver up a kingdom. Christ's second
coming is mentioned 318 times in the New Testament. "I go and prepare a place
for you, and if I go and prepare a place, I will come again and receive you." My
brother would have it read, "I go to prepare a place for you on earth, and when I
am ready you can stay there and enjoy it all." The second coming is mentioned in
260 chapters in the New Testament, and 318 times; it is mentioned in one verse in
every twenty-five. It is a tremendous doctrine. (Enthusiastic general applause)
Now, what is His coming for? He himself says it is to deliver up a kingdom. The
first eight verses of the twentieth chapter of Revelation are the only ones that have
any suggestion of a millennium in the Bible. "I saw thrones, and they sat upon
them" — itdoesn't say who sat upon them, and we don't know who they were. "I
saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus and the word of
God" — these were the
ones who did the reigning, and they were disembodied souls, they are the only
ones that are going to be in the millennium with Jesus, the only ones to reign with
Christ a thousand years. They may be living and reigning there now, for ought I
know. I don't know anything about it. They may be reigning in paradise all the
time. Jesus doesn't stay in paradise all the time, but I have no doubt he often visits
it. You could give a thousand interpretations to this passage, but the best thing is
to let it stand.
It is prophecy, and we shall never know what prophecies mean until they are
fulfilled. Nobody has been able to tell until they were fulfilled. "The rest of the
dead lived not again." Our brother has tried to wiggle out of that, but it is a simple
statement as it stands.
"When the thousand years are finished Satan shall go forth to deceive the nations,
to gather them together to battle, the number of whom is as the sand of the
seashore." The earth is covered with wicked nations, while Christ is reigning
somewhere with His saints! There is the figurative story in a figurative chapter in
a figurative book, and the book of Revelation has never been understood, though
10,000 able and ingenious and conscientious men, as my brother is, have tried to
interpret it and have not been able. Dr. Adam Clarke, one of the brightest
commentators in the Methodist church, tried it and failed; yet he is a Methodist —
almost as good a Methodist as I am! (Laughter.)
NO KINGDOM IS SET UP
There is no setting up of a kingdom in this chapter; there is no capital mentioned
here that I know of, and no throne, except these judgment thrones. Where did they
reign with Christ? It does not say whether on earth or where. Who are Gog and
Magog, when Satan comes forth from his prison, and finds the earth peopled with
wicked nations. These nations were on earth during that thousand years, because
they were not destroyed at the beginning, nor resurrected at the close, and their
battle begins after the millennium ends. If our brother had only got that big
fighting into the period of the thousand years there would be a little to support his
theory, but when the thousand years are finished the devil comes, and there is the
devil to pay. (Laughter.)
Christ's kingdom is referred to in prophecy, and I will select one reference. In the
second chapter of Daniel is the dream of the metalic image that Nebuchadnezzar
had, and which Daniel interpreted, "Thou sawest until a stone was cut out of the
mountains without hands, and it struck the image upon the feet and ground it to
powder, and the winds swept it away, and this stone grew, and became a great
mountain that filled the whole earth." First it was the kingdom of stone, then the
kingdom of the mountain-it is that today, thank God, and is rapidly filling the
whole earth. The stone struck the image on its feet during the reign of the Roman
emperors, the last of the empires represented by the image, following Babylon,
Persia and Greece.
The millennialists find that an awful picture to interpret, and in order to postpone
the setting up of the kingdom until the time comes, they want to keep that image
standing, and of all the wiggling and twisting they do to keep the image standing!
They manage to think the toes are still here. So an ingenious man, Uriah Smith,
the Battle Creek Adventist, manages to get ten toes still standing identified with
ten countries in Europe, in which the Roman empire was split up; but the
difficulty is that he has got all the toes on one foot. (Laughter.)
WHAT DANIEL SAYS
"The kingdom shall not be left to other people," says Daniel. In other words, there
is no dispensation to follow that kingdom. "That kingdom," says Daniel, "shall
stand." It is the last period, the last days, the last everything that this world will
ever see, when that kingdom is set up. That kingdom is now established,
inaugurated in the day of Pentecost, and it is already the mountain kingdom, with
more than four hundred millions of people that would die for Jesus Christ in five
minutes! (Applause.) It is growing to be the kingdom of the whole earth right
Christ's kingdom was introduced by John the Baptist, with the words, "Repent,
for the kingdom of heaven is at hand." The same message went forth at the mouth
of the Lord, and the twelve and the seventy who carried the word throughout
Judea. Do you think the kingdom of Christ is a thousand years future from that
message? Two thousand years have rolled by, and the kingdom, according to my
brother, has not come at all, and yet John, our Lord, the twelve, and the seventy
deceived that nation in saying it was at hand. (Applause.) Matt. 10: 23, "Ye shall
not have gone over the cities of Israel until the Son of Man be come." Was not He
already there? Was He talking nonsense? No. Christ came first in His incarnation.
His second coming was the inauguration of the kingdom at Pentecost, and the
third coming is as the judge of the world.
Now, my brother, you cannot get a millennium into the Bible until you settle
those literal statements. You have got to interpret by analogy of faith Matt. 16: 28.
"There be some standing here that will not taste death until they have seen the Son
of Man coming in His kingdom." Is that figurative? Just as literal as human
language can be made. Some standing here — therewere twelve standing there,
and eleven saw it — who should not taste death till they saw the Son of Man
coming in His kingdom. He came on the day of Pentecost, and has been in His
kingdom ever since. (Applause.)
"There be some standing here that shall not taste death until they have seen the
kingdom of God coming with power. " Now, my brother, when did the kingdom of
God come with power? It came when all those men were alive, or else the
scriptures are deceiving. If God has not given us a book we can interpret it is a
pretty poor book.
THE WORLD WAS SHAKEN
Let us see how He came. "Tarry ye at Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power
from on high." and again, "Ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is
come upon you, and ye shall be witnesses unto Me." Now read the second chapter
of Acts, where the spirit of God was poured out upon the people, the world, so to
speak, was shaken by the tremendous demonstration of spiritual power, and 5,000
persons joined the church in 48 hours. (Applause.) That was the coming of the
Son of Man in His Kingdom. It came a little then, but it has been coming more
and more all during the days since, and if the church had been loyal, instead of
ignorant, in the past ages, it would have been coming much faster.
But now the whole world is opening to the kingdom and Jesus told us how it
would grow — like a grain of mustard seed, until it became a great tree and
provided shelter for the fowls of heaven. "The kingdom of heaven is likened unto
leaven, which a woman hid in three measures of meal, until the whole was
leavened." I never yet heard a millennialist interpret that but said that leaven is
always a type of sin, and that means that sin is going to spread until the whole
world is full of it. But Jesus didn't say the kingdom of the devil is likened unto
leaven — it was the kingdom of heaven! The Son of Man came in His kingdom.
That kingdom is now leavening the human race, and will keep right on until the
job is complete. He did not come to snatch here and there a few.
Canon Ryle, bishop of Liverpool, said some strong things in favor of
millennialism, and I have respect for the good men that teach that doctrine, but
not for the doctrine itself It shows a lack of faith in God's word. The whole thing
proceeds from the idea that God has been making a little effort, and then got sack
of it, and is trying something else. This old world of ours, for ought we know, will
last 50,000 years, and be peopled by the human race — no reason to doubt that!
(General and prolonged applause.) Everything is in the beginning churches and
creeds, and education, railways, and commerce, and science, everything in the
morning of the world yet. It is going to get right by and by, under the leadership
of Christ and the power of the Holy Ghost and the consecrated church!
(Tumultuous and continued applause.)
WHAT THE LORD SAID
The Lord said to our Redeemer, "Sit Thou at My right hand until — when? the
restitution? No — until I make Thine enemies Thy footstool. For He must reign
until He hath put all enemies under His feet. (Much applause, in which Pastor
Russell joined.) "He shall not fail nor be discouraged, until He hath set judgment
in the earth, and the isles shall wait for His law!" (Great applause.) The first thing
the kingdom of Jesus Christ did was to capture the islands of the Mediterranean,
then Great Britain, the Sandwich islands, and the world over the islands are
coming to God more rapidly than the continents.
My brother has read a great many times a very interesting passage. I feel I ought
to set him right upon it, and since I have the stuff here, I am going to do it.
(Applause.) It is in the third chapter of Acts. "Repent and be converted, that your
sins may be blotted, when times of restitution shall come." It does not so read in
the Revised Version. "Reform and be converted, that your sins may be blotted
out, that so there may come seasons of refreshing from the presence of the Lord."
That takes the wind out of your sails, my brother! You have to take that or the Old
Version. I stand by this. You are to be converted so that you can have some good
times, and power and glory and salvation. (Applause.)
Pastor Russell interrupted here saying: "Read the next verse, brother."
Yes, I'll read it all — sorryl didn't read it before. "Whom the heavens must
receive until the restoration of all things — (tremendous general applause):
whereof God hath spoken by the mouth of His holy prophets that have been from
of old. Moses indeed said, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of
your brethren like unto me; to Him shall ye hearken, in all things whatsoever He
shall say unto you, and it shall be that every soul that shall not hearken of that
people shall be utterly destroyed from amongst the people; for all the prophets,
from Samuel and the prophets that followed, have told of these days. (Much
excitement and prolonged applause, in which Pastor Russell joined.)
Pastor Russell summed up as follows:
Our dear brother has conceded that so far as the book of Revelation is concerned,
and the twentieth chapter, he doesn't know anything about it.
(Applause.) He says that nobody knows. Well, we take his word for that, so far as
he himself is concerned (Applause.) But in the latter part of the chapter, when he
began to interpret this that he doesn't understand, he calls our attention to the fact
that Satan, after he is loosed, goes forth to deceive all people on the face of the
whole earth, the number of whom is as the sand of the seashore; and we think he
did not make a right application — not understanding it! (Laughter and applause.)
AT THE CLOSE OF THE AGE
The number, as the sands of the seashore, represents the whole population of the
world at the close of the millennial age, when the thousand years are finished.
During that thousand years, Satan being bound, all the evil restrained and the
knowledge of the Lord flooding the earth, the whole world will come under the
blessing that the Lord has promised by the mouth of all the holy prophets. At the
close of that millennium all those thus tried and instructed, that they might rise
out of degradation, up, up, up, to all that was lost in Adam, should properly have a
test at the end of their trial, and it is the Lord's proposition that this shall come
through Satan after his loosening!
It does not say that all will be deceived by the testing, but that Satan goes forth to
endeavor to deceive, and those who follow with him are to be sharers in the great
destruction which shall come upon Satan at the end of the testing. The remainder
will inherit the earth forever, for we agree with our brother that God made the
earth to be inhabited; He created it not in vain, but formed it for the habitation of
the world of mankind.
Our brother has probably unintentionally chided us as believing in Christ's reign
as a temporal kingdom. We never said a word of that kind. The Scriptures indicate
that Christ and the church will be spirit beings, Satan, the god of the present evil
world, exercises his power and authority without being seen — as a powerful
spirit being; and when his usurped authority shall be overthrown by Christ it will
not be necessary that he should be seen. He will continue to rule as a glorious and
righteous spiritual judge, with the church, equally spirit beings with him,
associated in the blessing work to be accomplished.
Our brother calls attention to the stone that became a great mountain. He did not
seem to get all that picture. Daniel saw in the different metals the world powers
which were to exist, and last he saw the stone taken out of the mountain without
hands. That stone is now being taken out. The mountains out of which it is taken
are the kingdoms of this world, and the Lord is selecting the "living stones" that
shall be a part of this great stone which shall eventually become the kingdom for
rule and blessing and uplifting of the whole world. The stone, when complete,
shall smite the image, not on its head, but its feet — inthe present-day
representatives of the world power, Germany, France, Spain, Great Britain, etc.,
who all without right claim the title "kingdom of God," and who never have been
owned of God as His representatives, but who shall be overthrown in the time
when the Lord shall take to Himself His full power and commence the reign of
the true kingdom of righteousness.
ESTABLISHED IN JERUSALEM
Our brother thinks Christ's kingdom was established in Jerusalem, and quotes the
words of John the Baptist and Jesus. To whom was the kingdom of heaven at
hand? To the world? No. To the Jewish nation, to whom God had promised that it
should be the kingdom if it accepted the offer. But, as John said, "He came to his
own, and his own received him not." Then the Lord said to them, "The kingdom
that was for you shall be taken from you and given to another people (interrupted,
with great applause), bring forth the fruits of it." What people is God going to
give the kingdom to? Those whom He has been taking out of the Gentiles for it.
Dr. Eaton concluded the debate for the evening as follows:
That last attempt to destroy the force of the tremendous texts I give loses itself
entirely when we remember that what the Jews refused passed right on to the
Gentiles. It was the same kingdom. If the Jews had it given to them in Jerusalem,
we have the same kingdom, the same gospel, the same Holy Ghost and the same
kind of preaching. (Applause.) The fact is, the kingdom of heaven is a spiritual
kingdom. The kingdom of God cometh not with observation. (General applause.)
Ye shall not say, Lo, here, or Lo, there, for the kingdom of God is within you.
It is perfect folly to talk about Jesus Christ, a Spiritual Prince, reigning anywhere
in any other sense than He now reigns in the hearts of those who love Him. The
kingdom of God is not meat and drink, "not forms and ceremonies," but
righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Ghost." If there is to be an earthly
kingdom there must be a semi-political system about it. He will have to be here
personally, visibly, and to be supported by the results of this earth, for they will
have to hoe potatoes and com and grow cabbage, for their own and His
I have been reading today the Rev. A. B. Simpson's work on "The Gospel of the
Kingdom," and he finds 15 Psalms and 51 chapters of the old testament altogether
that do not mean anything but the
millennium. I say that is a piece of stupid nonsense. Why not take a shovel and
throw the whole thing into the millennium? Why didn't Dr. Simpson take the
second chapter of Joel and put that into the millennium? The only reason he and
other millennialists don't take the second chapter of Joel is that Peter put his hands
on it and applied it to Pentecost.
The brother is going to put the entire human family on the earth. He has
calculated there might be a population of 252,000,000,000 or a quarter of a
trillion. That is a tremendous population, but it isn't large enough. If one
calculates according to the present rate of increase the population would not be
less than ninety-eight trillions, ninety-eight billions, three hundred millions; and
that divided over fifty-two million square miles of the earth's surface would give
each man a piece of land about four feet square — the whole earth covered with
people almost as thick as they sit in this audience! And yet people in a material
world must be supported, and I cannot tell how; but they must be, for a thousand
years! I don't want to go into a millenium where I can't sit down for a thousand
years. (Laughter and applause.)
If a man knows anything he knows that this planet is one of our solar system, and
a thousand others that have been or are now or will be inhabited. There are
600,000,000 of solar systems like ours, and Jesus Christ is declared in the Word
of God to have made all things. Do you suppose He will come down on the grain
of sand of ours, and reign here, where no eternal good could be accomplished by
His doing any such thing? My Christ is too great in dignity and power for any
performances of that kind. If it was necessary for Jesus Christ to go to the earth or
any planet to die to save it He would go at any cost or sacrifice, but He will not go
and set up a throne and be a little Napoleon or kaiser and jump around on the
earth for 1,000 years. (Laughter.)
God help us to get some ideas better than these. Bring down the great Creator of
the universe, the second person in the glorious trinity, and put him on a little
planet like this? It was all right in the days of the early church to have such ideas,
because they didn't know of any other planet. They thought this was the place
where everything centered and made up their minds this was where Christ was
going to reign. But when men's ideas began to increase, and they got to
understand how small our earth is, and how great the universe is, they simply
said: O pshaw, your millenium! Believe it if you can! I can't do it! (Applause.)
PENALTY FOR SIN
WAS UNDER CONSIDERATION
AT THE LAST OF THE DISCUSSIONS
All of the Meetings were well attended,
Many being Turned Away
STRONG ARGUMENTS PRODUCED
REPRINTED FROM THE GAZETTE OF NOVEMBER 2
The last joint discussion of the series between the Rev. Dr. E. L. Eaton, pastor of
the North Avenue Methodist Episcopal church, and Pastor C. T. Russell was held
yesterday in Carnegie Hall, Allegheny. Six meetings have been held, the first one
on October 18, and at every one of them all the seats were taken, while
yesterday's discussion was even better attended, the audience crowding the aisles.
Hundreds were turned away.
The audience was pretty evenly divided in sympathy, and telling points made by
either speaker were applauded impartially. The Rev. Dr. B. F. Woodbum presided
and introduced the speakers. This proposition was debated:" The scriptures clearly
teach that the divine penalty for sin — actual transgression of God's holy law —
eventually to be inflicted upon the incorrigible, will consist of inconceivably great
sufferings, eternal in duration." The Rev. Dr. Eaton led off with the affirmative
and Pastor Russell supported the negative. Each speaker had 50 minutes to
present his arguments and then each took 10 minutes for reply.
During the debates the following ministers took charge in the order named: The
Rev. Dr. W. H. McMillan, the Rev. Dr. Henry D. Lindsay, the Rev. Dr. J. W.
Sproul, the Rev. John A. Jayne, the Rev. Eli
Miller and Dr. Woodburn. In supporting the proposition Dr. Eaton said:
DR. EATON BEGAN THE DEBATE
We now leave the boundaries of time and space, and in this seek to explore some
of the realities and mysteries of eternity. Hell is the last calamity; the eternal state
of a lost soul. Opinion is practically universal on this point. The difference is
chiefly concerning the quantity and quality of the calamity. Conjecture is of little
value here. Human opinions are worthless, especially upon a subject which does
not come level to the human mind. God has spoken; let us hear what He has to
Do the scriptures clearly teach the eternal punishment of the wicked? The answer
must be sought in the scriptures. There is not a single word in the Old Testament
which means hell. In the discussion of the intermediate state it was shown that the
word translated in the common version hell, sheol, when used with a modifying
word, such as lower sheol, sheol from beneath, etc., means hell. It is referred to in
the New Testament as hades, but neither word represents the eternal state.
The only word in the Bible which means the eternal state of the lost is "gehenna,"
and in the American revision of the scriptures it is so translated. Gehenna — the
Valley of Hinnom is first mentioned in connection with the boundaries of the tribe
of Benjamin. It was located southeast of Jerusalem. Before the country was
occupied by the Hebrews the valley had been defiled by every base practice in
heathen rites, even the burning of children and the sacrificing of human beings to
the god Moloch. All this was abolished by the Jews, and the old heathen ground
was made odious by the good king Josiah and became the receptacle for the dead
bodies of the city, where they were burned, including the bodies of criminals, and
consequently a smoke could be seen ascending continually.
PUNISHMENT OF A WICKED KING
In Isaiah it was called Tophet, and is the description of the punishment of a
wicked king, probably Sen-necharib, whose army was over-thrown by the breath
of Jehovah, and whose dead bodies were consumed in the valley of Hinnom. The
word "gehenna" is an attempt to Hellenize the Hebrew word. It is a Greek word
now, and comes into the New Testament thus. We have the word 12 times in the
New Testament, and always correctly translated hell. It never means the
detestable valley south of Jerusalem in the New Testament, but universally carries
with it the horrible associations of the place from which the name is taken, and
stands in the New Testament for the fiery blast which shall come against the
enemies of God.
Matt. 5: 22: "I say unto you that whosoever is angry with his brother without a
cause shall be in danger of the judgment, and whosoever shall say to his brother,
Raca, shall be in danger of the council; but whosoever shall say to his brother.
Thou fool, shall be in danger of gehenna-fire."
There are three different grades of wrong-doing, and their appropriate penalties.
To be angry with a brother would expose one to the civil courts; to say to one's
brother Raca would expose one to the penalty of the Sanhedrin; but to condemn a
brother to eternal infamy and hell would expose the one himself to that very
penalty. That is the best that can be got in English of the Greek words.
The court of heaven itself takes cognizance of the third class of offences. God is
the judge, and the penalty is gehenna. It cannot, therefore, refer to a punishment
of the present time, but some awful penalty which shall beset the soul in eternity,
the dreadful catastrophy beyond death and the general judgment.
Matt. 18: 8: "It is better to go into life maimed than that thy whole body shall be
cast into gehenna — better to go into life with one foot, than that thy whole body
should be cast into gehenna." If these were the only texts in the New Testament
where the word gehenna is found, we might conclude that gehenna stood for some
earthly, temporal sense, the body and not the soul being here involved.
SOUL IS ALSO INVOLVED
But in Matt. 10: 28 we learn that the soul as well as the body is involved in the
doom of gehenna. "Fear not them which kill the body, and are not able to kill the
soul; but rather fear Him that is able to destroy both soul and body in gehenna."
Including the soul in the doom of final destruction clearly locates that doom
beyond the scope of earth and time, and makes it an eternal experience. The soul
cannot be consigned to the literal valley of Hinnom for punishment, but beyond
this earth it will be consigned to gehenna for its everlasting doom. "It is better to
enter into life halt or maimed than to be cast into everlasting fire." The word
gehenna does not appear here, yet it is the same class of comparisons that is
mentioned in the sermon on the mount. This intimates that gehenna and
everlasting fire refer to the same thing.
Mark 9: 47 says, "It is better to enter into the kingdom of God" — thus the
entering into life is associated with entering into the kingdom. This established
the fact that the judgment upon the soul is not in time, nor confined to the
boundaries of this life, but that it explicitly extends to the life which is to
come. In Mark 9: 43-48 we have these same injunctions to cast off an arm or foot,
and pluck out an eye, associated with the same penalties that attach for refusal to
obey Christ, and these words, "To go into gehenna, into the fire that never shall be
quenched; where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched." Luke 12: 45,
"Be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that have no more that they can
do; but fear Him which, after He hath killed, hath power to cast into gehenna." So
gehenna is a calamity of the soul; it is no calamity after a man is dead to bum his
body; the calamity is the killing of the body; but here, after the body has been
killed, fear him who can cast the soul into gehenna.
If we collate the texts cited we shall get these facts: That gehenna is the calamity
that shall be visited upon the enemies of God; that it is called a fire, an everlasting
fire, a calamity pronounced upon the soul, and that it belongs not to time, but to
eternity, and that it is to be eternal doom — a lasting punishment.
CHRIST'S DESCRIPTION OF GEHENNA
The word is found in several other texts — Matt25: Matt 23: 33. Every one of
these testimonies are from the words of Jesus. No writer in the Bible except James
used this word, outside the Lord Jesus, because evidently Jesus thought it was too
important a doctrine to commit to others for expression. James used it once, "The
tongue is a world of iniquity, that setteth on fire the whole course of nature, and is
set on fire of gehenna." We can learn something about gehenna by comparing
other texts where it appears under other names that possess the same
characteristics. Matt. 25: 41, "Everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his
angels." Matt. 18:8, this calamity is called everlasting fire. When the Lord said,
"Depart fi'om me, ye cursed, unto everlasting fire," He means gehenna fire, and
when in the 46th verse of the same chapter. He said, "These all shall go into
everlasting punishment," He means exactly the same thing as He says in verse 41.
In other words, everlasting fire and gehenna fire and everlasting punishment are
the same thing.
Revelation 20: 12. This wonderful chapter, that people toy with and juggle with
and conjure with, which is neither literal nor figurative, that nobody is sure of, but
of which we get so much nonsense. I am going to quote from that chapter,
because I know what I am talking about when I quote it. (Applause.) "I saw the
dead small and great stand before God." Are the dead going to be there? They are.
It is in harmony with the statement, "When the Son of Man shall come in His
glory, before Him shall be gathered all nations." I do not preach anything out of
the 20th chapter of Revelation that cannot be proven by the analogy of faith. "The
books were opened, and another book was opened, which is the book of life, and
the dead were judged out of the things written in the books, according to their
works." My brother has spent a little part of every speech he has made here in
trying to show that the judgment is a probation, and a trial, and a millennium.
Now, it is not all that. I say to you that the judgment is not a trial. I say that the
judgment is not a test; but it is pronouncing the verdict of the court according to
the books, and the books written according to the deeds done in the body, and not
the deeds done in the intennediate state. (Applause.) "We shall all stand before
the judgment seat of Christ, that every man may give an account of his works to
MANY ARE MUDDLED
I do not think my brother is the only one in the muddle over this matter; the
whole Christian world is muddled. Put this sentence down in your minds: It is one
thing to be saved by faith in Jesus Christ, and it is another thing to receive
retribution or judgment at the judgment throne of Christ for the deeds done in the
body. (Applause.) If you write that sentence in your heart no man will ever fool
you again. That is what the judgment is for. It is to tell us who is to be saved!
(Applause.) It is to determine what rewards men shall have, not to determine who
is to receive opportunity for salvation. If you are going to be saved, you had better
get saved now, and if you have not got it when the judgment throne is set, you
will be on the left side in the decision.
"The sea gave up her dead, and death and hades gave up the dead that were in
them and they were judged, every man according to his works, and every man
whose name was not found in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire, which
is the second death." In this sublime and awful passage we learn that the lake of
fire is identical with the everlasting fire and punishment of Matt. 25, gehenna fire,
everlasting fire, everlasting punishment, the lake of fire and the second death are
all exactly identical. They all mean the same thing, and I defy any man by any
interpretation to show that those words do not all mean the same thing. (General
applause.) Further, the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels, into
which the finally wicked will be cost, is also identified with the lake of fire and
brimstone, "where the beast and the false prophet are." That this calamity is
eternal is found in the fact that they "shall be tormented day and night forever and
The clearest, fullest and most unequivocal statement of the doctrine of the future
anywhere in the
Bible is in the words of Jesus Himself Other and corroborative texts may be
found from one end of the Bible to the other; for instance, "The wicked shall be
turned into hades, sheol, and all the nations that forget God." "It is a fearful thing
to fall into the hands of the living God," and others of like import. But it seems
our Lord was not willing to have this tremendous doctrine in doubt, and Himself
gives us the best exposition. Whatever quarrel anyone has on the subject must be
had with the Lord Himself
NO ELIMINATION OF HELL
There are popular objections that have been made — popularwith the masses. One
says the revised version has eliminated hell out of the Bible. As a matter of fact,
the revised version has not turned it a hair's breadth; they have made it stronger
and more forceful, if possible, because they have translated the word gehenna and
made an English word of it and put it in its right place. The word "hell" in popular
meaning is the eternal calamity of the lost souls, and almost everybody attaches
that meaning to it, and, that being the case, it exactly fits the word gehenna; the
word hell was a perfect and complete equivalent for the word gehenna.
Others say, and I expect my brother to ring the changes upon it, that this is all
figurative description. Figures are never used in weakness. I do not know whether
this is all figurative or not, but, even admitting that it is, the reality transcends the
figure, for the figure is but the poor scaffolding to help us climb up to some
conception of the mind of God. Grant they are figures, and the meaning of it is
that our ideas of heaven are figurative. Are you going to wipe out heaven that you
might have no hell? If the descriptions of hell are figurative, all the descriptions of
heaven are figurative, too. Do you want to give up heaven and throw it all
overboard for the sake of modifying or obscuring the doctrine of hell? I don't. I
feel like the old Universalist preacher, who was always talking about salvation for
everybody. He was a chaplain in the civil war, and when he went down there and
saw those rebels he said, "if there isn't a hell, there ought to be one for military
necessities." When you rob hell of its terrors by saying it is figurative, you rob
heaven of its glories by the same argument. (Applause.)
Let us see if it is figurative. The parable of the wheat and tares was a figurative
expression; but the Lord explained it by showing that wheat were children of the
kingdom, tares the children of the wicked one. Then he adds: "As therefore the
tares are gathered up and burned with fire (there is your figure) so shall it be in
the end of the world; the Son of Man shall send forth His angels, and they shall
gather out of His kingdom all things that cause stumbling and them that do
iniquity, and shall cast them into everlasting fire." Is that figurative? He uses and
treats it as though He was stating literal facts.
LIFE OR PUNISHMENT ETERNAL
"These shall go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into life
eternal." Kolasin aionios (everlasting punishment) and zoa aionios (everlasting
life) are the words used here. The same word is used for eternal in both cases. If
one is lasting the other is; if one comes to an end, the other does. So far as quality
and quantity is concerned, one is as great as the other. My brother, however, will
tell me that aion means an age or short period. I admit that it is used that way. I
think we are now living in the aion of the world which began with the human
history, and that it is the last age; our brother will tell us that there are several
aions, ages of the ages, and I won't quarrel with him, but they refer to the ages of
eternity, not this world. He will tell you that aionios does not mean an endless
condition, but let me tell you that these two words, aion, the noun, and aionios,
the adjective, are the only words in the Greek language which express eternity. If
you wanted to say that a thing is eternal you would use those words; in the
Hebrew it is olam, and in the Greek aion, but those words do not always express
eternity. You have to remember the associations of the text.
Some will tell you that annihilation of the soul is the punishment, and will say
that all the words describing the loss of the soul are punishment, or destroy or
bum up, and so on. They quote the passage, "The wicked shall be ashes under
your feet," from Malachi, and say of course that means annihilation. But hold on!
They don't read the next verse which says: "Ye shall grow up as calves of the
stall!" There you are! You are calves and the wicked are ashes! I don't know a
word in the Bible that means annihilation. God probably could annihilate, but we
cannot do it, not even to a grain of sand, much less a human soul. And that
doctrine is built upon another error, that the soul is not naturally immortal. Our
brother has been fighting for that all through. I affirm it is immortal, God made
the human soul immortal in the sense that He made it a living soul. I defy
anybody to point out the error. God made man in the likeness and image of
himself in his intellect, sensibilities and will, not in his nature; a living soul, in
which there was no self-limiting device which would at some future period work
its overthrow. It is not in the soul, but it is in the body immortal unless He
introduced some device to stave off death. But it is not natural for the soul ever to
die, and if the soul ever does die it will be an act of God. (General applause, in
which Pastor Russell joined.) I do not believe God ever
made soul or angel He could not kill. (General applause.) The only question is
whether you or I know about it, and I say He has not informed us of it.
RESTORATION OF THE SOUL
Another class has the restoration idea, that the soul will be restored because it is a
child of God. The wicked is not a child of God; there is a trememdous difference.
If a man gets to be a child of God he will have to be born of the Holy Ghost, and
there is some little hope that such a one will come back again to divine favor after
he has backslidden, as the prodigal son did, but the man who has no recollection
of God, who is a sinner, and who has not received the Holy Ghost, and who does
not want to know God, who never was at home with God and has traveled from
him ever since he was born, who curses God till the air is blue in Allegheny —
the fairest city in the world — there is no restoration for them.
If you build up any thought of annihilation on the idea that human souls are
children of God you will be left in the darkest hour of eternity. It is not true. The
whole idea proceeds upon the one idea that God can do something in eternity that
He cannot do here; that salvation means are going to be multiplied and intensified
in the future. That is a piece of sheer nonsense. It was right here in this world
where Christ died; it was here where the kingdom was inaugurated, when
Pentecost came and men were commissioned to go everywhere and proclaim the
unsearchable riches of Christ. If there is any world in God's universe where these
means for salvation can be made more intense, I do not know where it is, and it is
not in the Bible. (Applause) My brother is going to have them saved where there
is no probation at all; where Satan is bound; evil restrained; balmy breezes;
millennial comforts; case-hardened sinners growing up into prodigies of moral
fiber — as much as an angle worm! (Applause). That is not probation at all. I
have had to work out my salvation with fear and trembling for 40 years, and
expect to keep at it till I get through, and when I get through I will not think I
have been to a kindergarten! (Applause) But I will think I have been on probation,
and if God has to save me on those terais I am going to respectfully request that
He will put those other fellows through the same milli (Applause)
THE POWER TO SAVE
Some make much of the love of God. Let my right hand forget her cunning, and
my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth, if I ever speak lightly of the love of
God, the only hope of a lost world; but there are some things God cannot do.
Jesus loved the young rich man who wished to know the way of life, but when he
gave him the final test and the suggestion, was rejected, God could not save him
without his own inclination. To the Jews who had rejected Him, He uttered those
solemn and awful words, 'Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and
those that are sent unto thee: how often would I have gathered you as a hen
gathereth her chickens, and ye would not: behold, your house is left unto you
desolate." He stood before the doors of their hearts, weeping because he could not
save them, and you had better face those tremendous facts, rather than go into
eternity with the hope that God is going to accomplish there what he cannot
They say modern preaching has changed; that present-day preachers don't talk
about hell. I wonder how many people in the North Avenue church would say
that? I tell you hell is a serious matter. There is one preacher who hasn't gotten
over preaching it, and I am not responsible for the rest of them. If they have lost
faith in this thing, or have lost their courage to proclaim it, it is their fault.
Fifty-three years ago I stood by the ashes of my mother in a one-roomed log
cabin in Wisconsin. They enclosed her in a rough coffin, took her in a wagon five
miles away to the little graveyard, and put her into a cave without flowers, or a
song or a benediction. We looked into that mysterious place called the grave till
every last particle of gravel upon the coffin lid had fallen, and then left in that
place our dearest earthly friend. Times have changed. Coffins are caskets, flowers
make the home like a garden, sweet music and sympathetic words make the trial
easier, and at last, the cemetery, itself like a palaced city of the dead, receives the
casket which we lower into a bank of flowers, and
sing a sweet song and go away. The funeral of today is not the funeral of years
ago. Times have changed; but death is the same! (Applause.)
PASTOR RUSSELL'S ARGUMENT
Pastor Russell then took up the negative side of the proposition. He said:
We are pleased to say, dear friends, that there is a great deal that Dr. Eaton has
just stated to you that we fully agree with, but there are certain portions of his
discourse with which we could not agree. We cannot agree that the scriptures
teach that the wages of sin is an eternity of torture. We do not fmd it so written in
the word, nor do we fmd that such application would be in harmony with the
character of our heavenly Father. By way of giving a thought as to where we
believe this great doctrine of eternal torment came
from, which has so entrenched itself in the minds of the people, that good people
like our dear brother, well intentioned people, must confess that it is very much
against their own desires that they must preach very much differently from what
they would like to do themselves, very much different from what they would like
to think of the Almighty — we state that during the dark ages, at the same time
that purgatory came forth, this doctrine of torment was evolved — the same place
all the errors came from. And when I say the same place, I mean, dear friends,
that it came from Satan himself Where did the heathen get their ideas of torture
and inferno? Not from the scriptures; they got them from the great adversary, of
whom the apostle says:" The god of this world hath blinded the minds of them
that believe not lest the glorious light of the goodness of God should shine into
their hearts." (Applause.) The goodness of God is hidden from the sight of the
heathen by these false views, which they have received, and likewise in
proportion as Christian people receive this doctrine their minds become darkened.
It is to the advantage of our twentieth century that we have lost some of our love
for eternal torment. The time they loved the doctrine most was when they used to
emulate what they thought was the character and disposition of the Almighty
Father, and they would burn one another at the stake, and give them a foretaste of
what they thought the Father would give them later, only that would be kept up
through all eternity. The doctrine has been the most damnable doctrine throughout
the entire history of the church. I charge it with the greatest crimes of history.
What do these lynchings of the present day signify? Simply a repetition of what is
believed to be the character of God and his vindictiveness against evil-doers.
JUSTICE OF ETERNAL PUNISHMENT
The scriptures are in full harmony with what you and I and every other sane,
reasonable person in the world shall concede to be the reasonable and proper
character of our God. (Applause.) What is declared of our heavenly Father? That
He is just, that He is wise, that He is loving, that He is powerful. All Christian
people will acknowledge these attributes of the divine character. If this is so, can
we find any sense of the word in which we could conceive of God as just and yet
punishing a creature of His own hand to all eternity, no matter what the sin was? I
am not an apologist for sin; I do not live in sin myself, and I never preach sin. We
at the Bible House chapel preach holiness to the Lord. (Applause.) But I tell you
that all these people around here that our brother says are making the air blue with
their blasphemies of God and the holy name of Jesus Christ are all people who
have been taught this doctrine of eternal torment. (Applause.) And all the
murderers, thieves and evil doers in the penitentiaries, were all taught this
doctrine. ( Continued applause.) And another thing; you won't find one of the
Bible House company in that order by any means. (Prolonged applause.) These
are bad doctrines; they have been injuring the world this long time; they are not a
part of the Lord's teaching at all, and our dear brother has not gotten the smoke of
the dark ages robbed out of his eyes yet. (Applause.)
If we take up the subject of God's justice for a moment, could you possibly make
yourself believe that it would be a just thing for our heavenly Father to create a
world of humans and foreknow the end, and prepare a great and awful place
where 99 out of every 100 of them were to go, and to prepare a corps of fireproof
devils, and then to set forth the evil infiuences we see all about us, and to say: "If
you don't get away from these, down you go, and I intend you shall have it!"
There is no justice in that! It is totally foreign to justice. Where would be the
justice of tormenting a man to all eternity for 20, 50 or 100 years of life in Eden?
Where would be the wisdom of God in allowing a plan of that kind? Our brother
has his own ideas of this matter. He tells us in one breath that it is only those who
were begotten of the spirit that are to be saved, and again he tells us in another
that it is all the heathen, who never heard about Christ at all, who are to be saved.
(Applause) His good heart tries to embrace the world and see God's character
vindicated by the outcome, and he is in confiict with himself
A TERRIBLE PROSPECT
If only the ones who are going to escape hell are those who are begotten of the
Holy Spirit, most of your families and friends are going to eternal torment. It is a
serious matter to think of, and for God to think of, that hundreds and thousands of
millions He has created have no better opportunity, but are without opportunity
for knowing that truth, without which they cannot be begotten of the Holy Spirit,
and brought into the blessings of God's favor, now open to those who will receive
it. Where would God's love be in this plan? Our brother would tell us that God's
love was manifested in providing a way of escape. Then notice, that according to
this theory, because Adam sinned, damnation was pronounced upon him and he
was sent to eternal torment, and all his children with him sent to the same place;
and there would be no hope of escape except that we have Jesus as the Redeemer.
I freely concede, indeed, I claim, that none are escaped from the penalty except
those who accept Jesus; but I claim that what they escape from is
that which Jesus suffered for them — death! (Applause.)
I claim further, that God's gracious plan is that after He shall have gathered out
the church to be joint heirs with Christ in His kingdom. He is to give to His little
flock the administration of that millennial kingdom, that all the families of the
earth may be blessed with the knowledge of the Lord, and the opportunities they
will have then will be much better than now — andl am glad they will have them
much better than I am having it! ' (Applause.) I never begrudge any man all the
blessings and advantages he can get, and I will be glad to see the world get all the
exceeding riches of God's grace in the ages to come as the apostle suggests in his
letter to the Ephesians." In the ages to come (not in the present age), God will
show His exceeding riches of grace by Christ Jesus." But the riches of grace
shown to us who are in Christ Jesus now, and the blessing to us of the church, are
incomparably greater than are coming to the world, as we saw the other evening.
The blessing to the church is partaking of the divine nature — notmerely to get
life as human beings, but as the blessing God proposes to offer to the world is life,
a restitution as expressed by Peter in Acts 3, a higher blessing, namely life on a
spiritual plane, will be for the kingdom class.
CORRECTIVE, NOT VINDICTIVE
I hold that all punishment from the Divine standpoint must be corrective, just as
the best and noblest sentiments of mankind must have determined that all earthly
punishment shall be corrective, never vindictive. I am pleased, indeed, to see that
in all the penal institutions of the United States gradually this sentiment of
corrective punishment is being introduced, and all thought of vengeance against
the individual is being removed. It is a sign of progress; and I declare that they are
not progressing beyond the heavenly Father — thathe has in his plan the same
principle: that all punishment is intended to be corrective, to assist the individual.
Notice, that according to the scriptures, the penalty for original sin was death.
The account given in Genesis, where if in any place, there ought to be a succinct
statement of what the penalty would be, in the account of man's disobedience and
the Divine statement of the penalty, we find it to be, "The wages of sin is death."
And death doesn't mean eternal torment. Death is the opposite of life. Life is one
thing, death is the antithesis. So, when God told Adam that he might live by
obedience, it meant what it said; it did not mean, you have life anyhow, for
suffering or pleasure. Proceeding, we see that our Lord Jesus paid the penalty for
sin, and the penalty he paid was what? Did he go to eternal torment? Did he go to
gehenna? No. We all know to the contrary. He paid the penalty the Lord let fall on
Him. He paid what we would have had to pay but for His sacrifice — we would
never have escaped eternal death, if it was not for what Christ did. And what did
He do? "Christ dies for our sins, according to the scriptures!" (Applause.) Death
was the penalty, the wages, and this wage our Redeemer paid, and it was because
He paid it that we have hope toward God that we shall not be confined in death,
hope that all the prisoners in the pit shall come forth in the hope of a
In all harmony with this, we find the apostle, speaking of those who have come to
the knowledge of the truth, Heb. 6: 4-6; 10: 18-30, described the penalty that shall
come upon those who have sinned wilfully after coming to the knowledge of the
truth — "a certain fearful looking for judgment which shall devour the
adversaries" — notreserving and torturing, but devouting the adversaries of God.
Our brother quoted: "It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God."
THE CHURCH, NOT THE WORLD
The apostle was not speaking about the world, but the church, in this same
connection. If members of the church, who have come into Christ, shall take
themselves out of the hands of Christ, whom God sent as the mediator, and we
fall into the hands of God's justice, nothing remains of Divine favor, but only the
wages of sin — death. There is nothing to be hoped for out of Christ.
The message of salvation, the good tidings, that Christ died, is for whom? Every
man. Have all heard the message? No. Have all a hearing ear now? No. It is a
special blessing to those who hear the message in the present time, as the Lord
said: "Blessed are your eyes for they see, and your ears for they hear." Let us
rejoice that God's providence permitted our eyes of understanding to be opened in
permitting our getting some sight of God's goodness and plan. Let us not forget,
however, that there are a great many not so favored, and that the time is coming
when all the blind eyes shall be opened, and all the deaf ears shall be unstopped,
according to Isaiah 35.
The proposition is, choose, believe, live. "Choose life that ye may live." Some
one says, "But you cannot help living anjrway; you are so constituted that you
cannot die." God's Word days, "I have set before you life and death, choose life
that ye may live." Those whose eyes are opened may have the rejoicing that they
have chosen life, and in the present time the Lord himself declares that it is a
narrow way we walk in,
"and few there be that find it." We are in full harmony with the Lord in this
matter; not many are finding the way of life, not many know about the way of life,
nor the only name given under heaven or amongst men whereby we must be
saved, because God's due time is not come to bless the world with this full
knowledge. Look at the dark ages. Where was the knowledge of the kingdom at
that time? Where was the power of the kingdom exercised then? No one can
speak. The truth was fallen in the streets, and gross darkness covered the people
for over a thousand years. Was Christ's reign established in that gross darkness?
Our brother suggested that the establishment of the kingdom was at Pentecost,
because our Lord and John and the disciples proclaimed the message, "The
kingdom of heaven is at hand." Let us look at that. God had promised the
kingdom through Abraham to Israel, if they were faithful. They were to become
God's favored nation to bless the world as the seed of Abraham. And so the
apostle, speaking of His message, says "It was necessary that the gospel should
first have been preached unto you." It must be offered to Jews before it could be
offered to the Gentiles.
NOT EVERLASTING DESOLATION
Our Lord said to the disciples, "Ye shall not be gone over the cities of Israel
before the Son of Man be come." When did He come in that sense? Five days
before the crucifixion, when approaching the city. He wept over it, and stated
those words which our brother has already quoted, "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou
that killest the prophets and stonest them that are sent unto thee; how oft would I
have gathered thee as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would
not. Behold, your house is left unto you desolate." There He came as king; there
He offered Himself as king. They did not receive Him, and Jesus pronounced
these words of desolation upon them, but was it an everlasting desolation? Note
further, "Henceforth ye shall see me no more until that day." (Great applause.)
What day? The great millennial day, the day in which "ye shall say blessed is he
that Cometh in the name of the Lord." Meantime the kingdom has been taken from
them, and the people rejected from divine favor while God is selecting from the
nations in general the class which shall eventually constitute the true kingdom,
which shall rule to bless the world.
In the text which our brother quoted the other night (Acts 15: 14, 15) James tells
how the Lord is taking out this people for His name, and then goes on to quote the
prophet Amos on the subject. Our brother doesn't think the prophets knew
anything, or that the apostles knew very much, when they thought the stars were
pinholes in the sky, but I think it was much better to have it said, as it was of Peter
and John, "They took knowledge of them that had been with Jesus and learned of
Him," than to know all there is to know about astronomy. (Applause.) What we
want is the words of the Lord, and what we care for is not whether Peter was
learned or unlearned, but if God was with him and God used him, and declared
He would speak through him; then we will look for our instruction from him.
James went on to say, "After this I will turn again and will rebuild the tabernacle
of David, which is fallen down, and will build up the ruins thereof, that the
residue of men might seek after the Lord, and all the Gentiles upon whom my
name is called."
INTERPRETATION OF A PARABLE
I would like to have you notice concerning our brother's argument that we agree
that hades never means eternal torment; that there is not a word about torment
concerning hades except the parable of the rich man and Lazarus, and I must help
him on that. (Applause.) The rich man was clothed in purple and fine linen, and
fared sumptuously every day. That doesn't mean that every rich man is in danger
of something horrible. These are figures or parts of a parable. Purple represents
royalty — it always has. Was there any nation in a royal condition, a kingly
condition, in favor with God, at the time our Lord spoke? Yes, the Jewish nation
held that position. Their kingdom was the Lord's kingdom, as the Scriptures said,
for instance, of Solomon, "Solomon sat in the throne of the kingdom of the Lord,
in the room of David his father." Was there anything to represent their white
linen? Yes, they had the justification, purity, of the sacrifices of the law —
notactual justification, but a typical cleansing. What was the sumptuous feast? It
was the rich promises and blessing which God had given them, of which the
apostle wrote, "What advantage hath a Jew? Much advantage every way, chiefiy
because to them were committed the oracles of God." And what does Lazarus
represent? That class who were aliens and strangers from God's favor, the poor of
this world, not highly esteemed — the Gentiles.
There came a change in the Jewish nation; it passed away as a nation, although it
has remained as a people; and Lazarus' condition was changed. The Gentiles came
into God's favor, and became participants of the blessings promised to the seed of
Abraham. Abraham's bosom represented that the Gentiles had been admitted to
the privileges of the children of Abraham, spiritual Israelites, joint heirs with
Christ in His kingdom.
The end of the rich man's course is not mentioned in the parable, but in Rom. 11,
we have the Apostle Paul
very fully describing the casting off of Israel, in order to permit the election of the
Gentiles who should complete the church of Christ, and after this has been
accomplished a return of great favor to the Jewish nation-a release of the rich man
from his condition of torment, and his admission into the blessings which God has
promised, humbled and helped by the severe experiences of the past nineteen
"As concerning the gospel, they are enemies for your sakes (the church's sake),
but as touching the election (the original promises of earthly favor to Israel) they
are beloved for the father's sake. As in times past ye have obtained mercy through
their unbelief, through your mercy they may obtain mercy." When shall the
church exercise mercy toward Israel? In the future time of glory, when all power
shall be in the hands of the glorified church to accomplish all of God's will.
We agree that gehenna is a place of fire, but the apostles agree, and the prophets,
and Jesus, that the Lord's utterances were parabolic. "Without a parable spake He
not unto them." "He opened His mouth in parables and dark sayings, that seeing
they might see and not perceive, and hearing they might hear and not understand."
DID NOT UNDERSTAND AT FIRST
The disciples did not understand, and Jesus told them they would not understand
"Until the holy spirit should come upon them, and they should be endued with
power" later. We agree that gehenna means a place of fire, and that the original
Tophet, outside Jerusalem, was a representation of gehenna. The literal gehenna
outside Jerusalem was a type of the symbolic gehenna outside the New Jerusalem.
As the literal valley was a place for disintegration of dead carcasses, so in the
symbolical condition, all the evildoers should be cast into gehenna, dead — to
forever experience the penalty pronounced for wilful sin — because nothing that
defileth or maketh a lie shall enter into the new government, the New Jerusalem,
to be established when the millennial kingdom shall begin to exercise its control.
Our brother quoted from Revelation the very interpretation of the lake of fire
which we should have given — Revelation 20, says, "The lake of fire, which is
the second death!" (Great Applause.) The second death is just like the first death
would have been, an everlasting death, had not our Redeemer purchased an
opportunity for resurrection. The second death has no end, there is no hope that
those who go into it shall ever return; it means utter destruction. Christ dieth no
more. He will never redeem the world again, but as the result of His own
redemption every member of the human family purchased by His precious blood
must have a full opportunity to escape the hadean penalty upon the human race,
must have the opportunity of gaining eternal life. Those who have eyes to see and
ears to hear, should have the hearts to know that in the present time they may
have part in the select little flock who, by patient continuance in well-doing, may
attain to the opportunity of administering the wonderful blessings which God has
in reservation for the world of mankind.
AS TO HEAVEN AND HELL
Our brother stated that if you take away hell you take away heaven — the
eternity of the one is implied in the eternity of the other. We are fully agreed that
the penalty which God will pronounce upon the wicked will last forever!
(Applause.) There is no question about the eternal continuance Of it. The question
is, "What will the penalty consist of?" Our answer is most emphatically, the
penalty for wilful sin will be the second death, from which there is no
resurrection, from which there is no recovery.
Our brother quotes a text from this 20th chapter of Revelation, which he told us
the other night he didn't understand — a quotation which I certainly hope and you
certainly hope you never will see fulfilled, if it is to be taken literally that the
beast and the false prophet shall be tormented before — " the throne of the Lamb
day and night forever: " If all the wicked are to be cast in with them to a lake of
fire, the Lord and the saints throughout all eternity would be doing nothing but
hearing the groans of the damned.
We have not time to go into this now, but I merely suggest: What is the beast?
You don't know! What is the false prophet? You don't know! Well, you will have
to get an understanding of what these two are before you can understand how they
are going to be tormented! (Applause) They are symbols of institutions, now
existing in the world. It is the same figure referred to early in the chapter. "That
would not receive the mark of the beast in the forehead nor in their hands." These
are great institutions now in existence, and we need' to be on guard that we do not
have the mark of this beast on us! (Applause)
The Lord speaks of the broad way that leadeth to destruction. That doesn't sound
like eternal torment, does it? I used to think it did once, and went out of this city
of Allegheny, when a boy, putting texts on walls and in the streets, warning
people to turn to God, and escape the awful future I thought was before them, and
wondered why God didn't do more to save the people, and tell them of their
terrible condition. I have found out since that God was more wise and
loving than I, that, as the prophet declares, "His ways are higher than our ways;
and His plans higher than our plans — as the heavens are higher than the earth."
GIVES THE REASON FOR IT
Our brother didn't quote anything from the apostles, and I'll tell you why. There
wasn't anything to quote! (Laughter.) The Lord spoke in parables and dark
sayings, but the apostles did not do so; the apostles were writing to the church,
and they wrote plainly. Paul says, "They shall be punished with everlasting
destruction" — thedestruction shall be forever. "Whose end is destruction." (Phil.
3: 19) "Vessels of wrath fitted for destruction." (Rom. 9: 22) "Which drown men
in perdition and destruction." (1 Tim. 6: 9) Nothing about eternal torment in any
thing the apostle states and yet he said, "I have not shunned to declare unto you
the whole counsel of God."
What He had to tell was sufficient that the man of God might be perfect,
thoroughly furnished unto every good work. (Applause) Paul was not the only
one. Peter says, "Bringing upon themselves swift destruction." (2 Pet. 2: 1)" Some
wrest the scriptures to their own destruction." We are wresting the scriptures to
our own injury if we take words and make anything mean black when it-is white,
make life mean death, and death mean life, and destruction mean torment, and
make perish mean torment. "God so loved the world 'that he gave His only
begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on Him should not perish" — does perish
mean torment? It takes several years at a theological seminary to know how to do
Our brother has made a point concerning the kingdom, that it must have begun at
Pentecost, because the Lord said, "There be some standing here who shall not
taste death until they see the Son of Man coming in His kingdom." Our brother
should have read on. The division of the Bible into chapters is a modern
invention, and was not contained in the original scriptures.
The translators divided the account of these words from their proper connection,
for the first words of the next chapter are, "And five days afterward He taketh
Peter, James and John up into a high mountain, and was transfigured before
them." He showed them the glories of the kingdom. How do you know? One of
the brethren there said so!
DID NOT USE ANY FABLES
Peter said, "We have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made
known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, for we were
eyewitnesses to his majesty, when he received from the Father honor and glory
when there came such a voice from the excellent glory. This is my beloved Son;
and this voice we heard when we were with him in the holy mount." He is talking
about the matter of the glory and the kingdom. And he goes on, "We have a more
sure word of prophecy, where unto we do well that we take heed, as unto a light
that shineth in the dark place, until the day dawn."
Has the day dawned yet? No; we are still in the night time, and the Lord's people
still need the light of the lamp, the word to guide them, until the glorification of
the church, the bride of Christ, when, as stated in the parable of the tares, after the
wheat was gathered into the garner, "Then shall the righteous shine forth as the
sun in the kingdom of their Father." This will be the manifestation of the sons of
God, in glory, for which the apostle, in Rom. 8, declares the whole creation is
groaning and waiting that they might then be delivered from the bondage of sin.
I am sorry there are some still blinded, as were the Pharisees at the beginning,
that they do not see the great privileges and blessings of many of God's people
today, and see not that the light is breaking on all topics under the sun, and the
sciences and inventions are being multiplied, so it is due time that light should
shine out of darkness, and that the dawning of the new day should be marked by
the increased knowledge concerning God's holy word. Not wresting the
Scriptures, but having full confidence in them, we stand with every person who
has similar confidence, and seek to know as fully as possible the revealed will of
The applause following Pastor Russell's close was long-continued, and the
speaker was obliged to arise and acknowledge the outburst. Dr. Eaton was greeted
with enthusiastic cheers when he got up to make his 10-minute reply. He said:
REPLY BY DR. EATON
I cannot get my brother to give me an answer. I gave you a statement,
unvarnished, scriptural, with a thousand texts to prove it.( Applause.) Why didn't
he answer them? Why doesn't he say something? He tells ns that the beast and the
false prophet and the devils are symbols. Every one can see that! We have to
admit it! They were thrown into the lake of fire and tortured forever! It must be
hard work to torture symbols. ( Applause.)
They were persons, my brother, and they were thrown into the lake of fire; that is
the only place where God will torture. I have not said God would torture sinners,
as he said I did. I have talked about
eternal punishment. I referred you to Jesus' own words, kolassin — punishment.
You can appeal to men's notions, and get cheers from a rabble on a street corner. I
appeal to men's reasoning powers. The question is. What are we going to take
from the word of God? The doctrine did not come from Satan; we had it from the
lips of Jesus Christ, and no man can examine the texts in which the word gehenna
occurs without feeling that the calamity of a lost soul is an inconceivably great
calamity and eternal.
I thought our brother was going to discuss what we had before us tonight, and not
hash up a lot of other things. I supposed I had made the millennial doctrine look
like 30 cents the last night, and I didn't propose to discuss it again.
Our brother said all punishment is corrective. He muddles you when he talks like
that. A great many texts state how God is correcting, for our profit, all through the
period of probation; but when probation ends, and when men are passed beyond
the present life, then punishment is retributive, and not corrective. God is not
damning men in this life. He is not punishing them here. The evil comes that he
may prune and purify. The whole question of eternal punishment is not corrective
or remedial, but retributive, for "Vengeance is Mine, I will repay, saith the Lord."
(Applause.) The soul that reaches the calamity of gehenna has come to the point
where corrective measures do not go, but punitive measures, the execution of the
judgment of God as retributive justice upon those who refuse the privileges of
WORRIED BY TWO THINGS
Our brother worried about two things, and has been trying to make the best of
them he could. He says that Christ never spoke except in parables. We know that
is not true. He has found one text which says He always spoke in parables, but I
do not know why the author wrote it. I cannot interpret it as truth. He did not
always speak in parables, by any means. He went to the extent of explaining
parables to make them literal. It was not a parable when Jesus said, "Repent."
That was a plain statement.
When John said "Repent," there was no figure about it, and when he put it into
the mouths of the others, it was literal. That mission, given to the disciples, 12 and
70, was never repeated after Pentecost, but Paul says to the church at Ephesus,
"Amongst whom I have gone preaching the kingdom of God." Our brother says
the kingdom was not set up on that occasion. It was set up. It was inaugurated at
Pentecost, for Jesus and Paul and John, and the 70 and the 12, not only said the
kingdom of heaven is at hand, but they also heard Jesus say, "Ye shall not have
gone over the cities of Israel until the Son of Man be come." He was already there
in one sense. He was to come in another sense. Do not be fooled by anybody. It is
impossible for a people who have a spoonful of brains to misunderstand. What did
Christ mean? He meant that they would surely see the kingdom when the power
should be manifested at Pentecost. It was not the transfiguration at all. Mark says:
"They shall not taste death until they have seen the kingdom of God come with
power." When Jesus said, "Ye shall be endued with power after the Holy Ghost is
come upon you," that referred to Pentecost. (Applause.)
My brother, it is not a fair treatment of the word of God to try to wiggle out of
that! (Applause.) If, after I give you the simplest statements of the scriptures, and
my brother insists that they are figures, then you have no revelation at all, from
God's word, but a revelation from Pastor Russell! (Applause.)
Did that kingdom of God come with power on the day of Pentecost when the
holy spirit was poured out? If it did it is come, and it is coming by and by, and we
are in the last time, the last period of the world's history now. Peter stood up and
so declared when he said: "This is that which was spoken of by the prophet Joel,
'In the last days I will pour out my spirit. ' "God poured out His spirit at Pentecost
and that was the last day. They will close with the harvest, which is the judgment,
and this millennial nonsense, which is a piece of stupidity and nothing else, will
be completely shattered and done away!
APPLAUSE FOR THE DEBATERS
Dr. Eaton's remarks were received with vociferous cheers by many, and he was
obliged to acknowledge the applause by a rising salute.
Pastor Russell, answering the reply, was accorded a most enthusiastic reception
also. He said:
I must be very brief, but I have some other items I should have mentioned before.
Regarding the kingdom, we quite agree that it was begun in an embryotic sense.
We are not at all in disagreement that Pentecost was a great day and a wonderful
time; it was the beginning of the new dispensation; it was the beginning of the
selection of the house of sous; it was the anointing of the sons with the holy spirit
from on high. But it is one thing to have the kingdom begun in an embryotic
condition, and another thing to have the kingdom in power. During all this gospel
age the kingdom has been in progress, and the Lord is taking out the class whom
he wants, all probationary members, who are exhorted to make their calling and
election sure that they may be in the completed kingdom in due time. But all the
reigning and ruling
done in the present time isn't worth mentioning. "The kingdom of heaven
suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force!" They took the head of the
kingdom, and crucified Him, and they have taken the members of the body, who
must suffer for Christ's sake before they can do any reigning. ( Applause.) In due
time, when all the members of the kingdom shall be ready, and after the gathering
of all the jewels who shall compose that kingdom, then the offer of blessings to
the world, through it, shall begin at once. To use another figure, the bride will be
with the bridegroom when the kingdom is fully established, but, as the Scriptures
say, "The bride must make herself ready."
I also agreed that we are in the last days. The whole period of time from Adam to
the second coming of Christ is divided into six periods of a thousand years each —
thousand-year days. Six are past and we are now in the beginning of the seventh.
At the time of our Lord four of these great days had passed, and they were
entering the fifth, so that it was proper for the apostles to say that they were in the
last days — theywere in the latter end of this great week.
FATE OF THE WICKED
I also agree that by an act of God all the wicked can be dealt with; that they have
not inherent immortality, and if God says all the wicked will be destroyed, how
else shall we view the matter? Our brother accused me of not answering him; he
did not notice that I was agreeing with him so well. God is able to destroy both
soul 'and body in Gehenna, and not only able, but He is going to do it — an
everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and the glory of His power!
(Applause.) I should not enjoy heaven after the manner of Jonathan Edwards, who
told the people about their friends in their lost condition, and when asked how
God could be praised under such conditions, said: "We will look from the
battlements of heaven and see the earthly ones writhing in torture, and then turn
about and praise God the louder for the manifestation of His justice! "
Our dear brother talked about the beasts and the lake of fire. He forgets that the
lake of fire is just as symbolical as the beasts are! (Applause.) Jesus explains this
particular symbol and says: "The lake of fire is the second death!" (Applause.)
Our brother thought he annihilated the doctrine of the millennium. He called
attention to the fact that there would not be room for him to sit down, and that that
completely demolished the millennial idea. Our dear brother demolished himself
(laughter) when he told us that. I took his figures, and I wish you would check
them over carefully yourselves. He tells us the population of the world altogether
would amount to ninety-eight trillions, ninety-eight billions, three hundred
millions. That is not so. (Applause.) Take your pencil and paper and follow the
doctor's statement of how he got at this result. You will find that, according to his
idea of calculating, there would be today in this world forty-eight trillions, two
hundred and eighty-nine billions, eight hundred and twenty-four millions, one
hundred and sixty-five thousand, six hundred and eight.( Applause.) I want to say
that the doctor is a safer man to follow in some other things than in figures. He
had an object in this. He wanted to make out that there wouldn't be room to sit
down, if he were on earth in the millennium.
I began with today. We have the best statistics today that were ever known. There
are today sixteen hundred millions of a population, as compared with forty-eight
trillions! (Laughter.) The doctor's figures are only forty-eight thousand two
hundred and eighty-nine times too many. That is a pretty good joke. (Laughter
and applause.) You remember that the other evening he told us either he or I could
fool you, and I believe he has fooled you on this. (Laughter.) I am speaking as
candidly as I would know how to do in the presence of God and the angels on this
matter, dear friends. (Applause.) I find that by the most reasonable calculation I
can possibly make there have been living in this world nineteen billions, four
hundred and thirty-seven millions, five hundred and seventy-five
thousand, eight hundred and twenty-two, the extreme outside number that could
possibly be reckoned.
STILL PLENTY OF ROOM
But suppose you double this, it will still leave plenty of room. This calculation
shows that, taking the acreage of the world as it is today there would be nearly
two acres apiece for all the people who ever lived in the world. (Applause.) Plenty
of room to sit down. You have not the millennium knocked out on that basis. And
God is able to make that statement in Revelation literal, "There shall be no more
sea," in order to make good his promise that all the earth shall be filled with the
knowledge of the Lord," and that "every man shall know Him, from the least to
the greatest. "
In this calculation I found it necessary to work in harmony with the scriptures'
figures, giving the count from Noah's time on; our brother reckoned that half a
million persons would be a fair estimate before the flood; I conceded a million, to
be generous. Beginning with Noah there were eight persons. I count that they
multiplied four times every century in the first nine centuries, instead of twice, as
our brother suggested. That would give us at the exodus 4,194,304 persons
dying in one century. Four centuries later it would be 37,000,000; in Solomon's
time, 75,000,000; in Babylon's time, 150,000,000; in Christ's time. 301,000,000;
in Atiha's time, 693,000,000 in Chariemange's time, 1,207,000,000; in the
Crusader's time 2,500,000,000; in the time of the Reformation, 4,800,000,000 —
dying every four centuries. Coming to the seventeenth century, and counting each
century's death-rate separately, there would be for the last three centuries two
billions, three billions, and four billions eight hundred millions respectively. We
cannot throw out the millennium on the score of lack of standing room now!
Now dear friends, I must cease. I wish to thank you for your kind attention, and I
am sure our brother will join in this expression, that our hope is that we have not
come together merely to measure theological swords, but to help all see more
clearly the word of the Lord, and to expose the truth, that the Lord may be
glorified, and that all who are of the truth may be able to see the truth. (Prolonged
Dr. Eaton replied to the closing expressions of Pastor Russell, assuring the
audience of similar good desire, and his pleasure at noting the general
manifestation of interest on the part of the people in the word of the Lord, as
evidenced by the remarkable attendances at the meetings. He admitted that there
was not enough doctrinal teaching and discussion concerning the Lord's word,
and hoped that this would be stimulated by the series of debates which was just
Had we been there beloved Lord
When on that night you knelt
With anguished prayer upon your lips.
Would we your grief have felt?
Had we been there?
Had we been near, O precious Lord
When traveling Calvary's road
You fell beneath the cross you bore.
Would we have borne the load?
Had we been near?
That early morn would we have gone
And sought thy sacred tomb
That we might thus annoint thee there
With spice and sweet perfume?
That early morn?
What joy is ours, for thou art raised
And nevermore shalt die.
Thy blood was shed that we might live.
Thy name we glorify!
What joy is ours!
We'll follow on, the call is clear
For all to consecrate.
A life anew in us begun.
All else do we forsake.
We'll follow on!
Then raised with him when life is o'er,
A crown for every cross.
What resurrection joy we'll know!
What gain for every loss!
When raised with Him!