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know only one Christ, now in the glory, but they are warned of false spirits in false prophets. (1 John iv. 1.)
Then there shall be wars and rumours of wars, accompanied by famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes. These are the beginning of sorrows. The Jewish remnant shall be persecuted, and there shall be betrayal and hatred among themselves; and because lawlessness shall abound, the love of many shall grow cold. False prophets shall also mislead many. He that endureth to the end, the same shall be saved. The gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the habitable world, and then shall the end come.
It will be seen that this is an answer rather to the last question--the end of the age--than to the other two. Now, the age is still running on, or, if we view the time of the church as a parenthesis, apart from time, the age will be taken up again on the return of the Jews to their own land, and their having to do with God. Many scriptures speak of their passing through great tribulation. Then these things will have their fulfilment.
Before they own the true Christ they will be open to the danger of false Christs. There will be also wars, famines, pestilences, and earthquakes, as is amply testified in the judgments of the Revelation. In chapter xiv. 6, 7, we also read of the everlasting gospel being preached to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people. Our passage says, shall the end come”—the end of this age, and the millennium will follow.
Verses 15–28. This portion does not follow the preceding as to time. As that spoke of the end coining, this speaks of the coming of the Son of man, and corresponds more to the second question,
though it may also refer to the first. This portion goes back and commences with the abomination of desolation spoken of in Daniel xii. 11 (which must not be confounded with chapter xi. 31, which refers to Antiochus Epiphanes). This, in its future fulfilment refers to Antichrist, but, with what follows, may have had a partial fulfilment at the destruction of Jerusalem. The Romans desecrated the temple, but this is not its true fulfilment. The admonitions that follow as to fleeing to the mountains in haste, and the prayer that it might not be in the winter, or on the sabbath, may also have had a partial fulfilment at the destruction of Jerusalem (though we get that more particularly in Luke xxi. 20–24), but it will be seen that verse 21 speaks of the great tribulation which is still future—a tribulation that should exceed anything before it, and should never be equalled afterwards. So severe, indeed, is it to be, that unless the Lord should cut it short, all falling under it would be swept away, but for the elect remnant's sake, it should be cut short. This verse shews us that the interpretation of the passage refers to the future.
The apostasy will be appalling, inasmuch as the false ones will be able to shew “great signs and wonders,” so as to deceive all except the elect ones under God's protection. Revelation xiii. also speaks of miracles, which Antichrist, in conjunction with Satan, will be able to work. Apostate Christendom and the unbelieving nation of the Jews will both be brought under the power of Antichrist.
The coming of the Son of man shall be like lightning, striking terror into the hearts of all — entirely different from the coming of the Lord for His saints-an event to be looked forward to with joy and not with terror.
“Wheresoever the carcase is, there shall the eagles be gathered together"-as is the case in time of war or other calamities : men's bodies are food for the birds of heaven-a sure sign of the judgments of God upon the apostate nation.
HINTS ON THE TABERNACLE AND ITS
THE HOLY PLACE. In the holy place there were three things : the golden altar, the table of shewbread, and the golden candlestick. They were arranged some
. what thus :
1, The table of shewbread. This was to be niade of shittim wood, overlaid with pure gold. We have already seen that the wood and the gold prefigure the manhood and divinity of our Lord. It was to have a border and a golden crown round about; it was to have rings of gold, and the staves were to be overlaid with gold. The dishes and spoons, and covers, and bowls, were all to be of pure gold.
Upon the table were to be twelve loaves of bread made of fine flour, and set in two rows. Upon the bread was to be put pure frankincense memorial, even an offering made by fire unto the Lord.” (Lev. xxiv. 7.) Every sabbath fresh loaves were to be placed on the table, the others being eaten by Aaron and His sons. It was a perpetual statute that bread should always be before the Lord. had to be ground into flour, and then when formed into cakes to be baked with fire-agreeing with the sufferings of Christ. The frankincense shews He was a sweet savour to Jehovah. - There were twelve loaves, shewing that there was provision for the whole of Israel. The term shewbread, or presence bread, is remarkable. The twelve tribes were thus always represented before the Lord in the bread that was provided for them.
This is Christ as the bread of life. The wheat
to for a
2, The golden candlestick. This was to be made of
pure gold. It was to have six branches, three on each side; each branch was to have four bowls like almonds, with knobs and flowers. It was a lampstand to hold seven lamps; not twelve, as in the case of the loaves, but seven, the number of divine perfection. It represented
the manifestation of God in the Holy Spirit. Even the tongs and snuff dishes were to be made of pure gold.
The lamps were to be fed with pure olive oil, beaten for the light, and the lamps were to burn continually. Aaron was to order the lights from the evening unto the morning”– during the time when darkness was over Israel.
Our Lord was represented as the true light when He was down here, but that does not clash with the golden candlestick representing the Holy Spirit. We have in Revelation i. 4,“ the seven Spirits which are before his throne."
3, The golden altar. This is called the golden altar, to distinguish it from the brazen altar. Where it was a question of sins, and God's righteous judgment, the altar must be of brass, but here it is for incense, and it must be overlaid with pure gold.
The altar was made of shittim wood, entirely overlaid with gold. It was to be four-square, and to have a crown of gold around it, and rings wherewith to carry it. The staves were to be overlaid with gold.
Aaron was to burn sweet incense thereon in the morning when he dressed the lamps, and again in the evening when he lit them.
The incense is described in Exodus xxx. 34-38. It was to be compounded of equal weights of stacte, onycha, galbanum, and pure frankincense. Great research has been made to discover definitely what spices are here referred to, but without success; they remain unknown. This is signifi
. cant, and renders the inquisitiveness of man abortive. They would surely have tried to imitate the holy incense, whereas God declared that no one might make such a perfume. It was holy unto the Lord, and whosoever made any like unto it to smell thereto was even to be cut off from His people.
The divine perfections of our Lord were a continual perfume rising to Jehovah, but were altogether above the grasp of man, and far too sacred for his imitation. Man must not smell thereto;"> it could be appreciated only by Jehovah Himself. Thus, in the holy place, between the door and the vail, we see that nothing met the eye but gold, except the fine-twined linen at the roof. The walls were gold, the candlestick gold, the altar gold, and the table gold-everywhere it was that which prefigures God. The lamps and their light were God in the Holy Spirit; the table was laden with the provision God had made for His people: and from the golden altar proceeded that holy perfume which prefigured the person of our Lord, Godward, as we have it in the New Testament: “ This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased."