Page images

servants, and ye that fear him, both small and great. And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying; Alleluia; for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth. Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honor to him: For the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. And to her was granted, that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white; for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints. And he saith unto me, Write; Blessed are they tliat are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me; These are the true sayings of God.” This is a brilliant prophetic description of the Church, in the commencement of the Millennium.

Another description of the same is given in the following chapter. An Angel descends from heaven; binds the devil; and shuts him up in the bottomless pit; that he should deceive the nations no more for a thousand years. Symbolic thrones are presented. The event is now introduced, long before predicted by the representatives of the Church; “And we shall reign on the earth.”

The souls of the martyrs, and of all, who had escaped the fatal snares of the kingdom of darkness, are now raised, in their successors; and they live and reign with Christ, a thousand years: Or, for that term, the Church have a state of uninterrupted prosperity on earth. The glory of the Lord is revealed, and all flesh see it together.


The desirableness of this Kingdom of Christ. The millennial Kingdom of Christ is held up, through the prophetic scriptures, as an event most de. sirable; and the view of it most animating. The predictions of it were to animate the Church, under all her trials, through all the preceding ages. What the Savior said of Abraham, has been true, in this sense, of the children of Abraham; they have rejoiced to sec


Christ's day. They have seen his Kingdom by faith, and were glad. When its approach is near, the followers of the Lamb with joy obey the direction, to look up, and lift up their heads; for their redemption draws nigh. Such is the blessedness of the event, that the redeemed of the Lord will hail its dawn with songs and everlasting joys; they shall obtain joy and glad. ness; and sorrow and mourning shall flee away.

The object of this section will be, to note, in some particulars, the desirableness of that blessed day; or show why it will be as life from the dead.

1. God will then be glorified on earth. Now he is infinitely dishonored. He is set at nought by the multitudes of the wicked. Emperors, potentates, and the first men of the nations, despise God and his anointed; and say, as was long since predicted of them, “Let us break their bands asunder, and cast their cords from

Atheism raises its hydra forms, and brazen front. And millions unnumbered have the most contemptuous views of their Makerą They virtually blaspheme and deny him to his face. This is unspeakably dreadful in the view of all holy beings. The saints are vexed with such filthy conversation of the wicked; and are grieved for the honor of their God.

But in the Kingdom of Christ, God will be honored by all. He will be known, feared, obeyed, adored, and glorified, as God the great, the glorious, and the terri. ble.

Jesus Christ will then be honored. Instead of being denied, set at nought, derided, and all his benevolence, and his dying love despised; he will be embraced and adored, as the divine Redeemer, the only Savior of the world. Men will feel their need of him. They will duly appreciate his glorious grace. And the countless millions will live, preeminently, the lives they live in the flesh, by the faith of the Son of God. Their hearts, tongues and lives will resound the sacred sen. timent; “This is my Beloved, and this is my Friend." "Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain, to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and hanor, and glory, and blessing."

[ocr errors]

2. That will be a day of salvation. The preceding ages are ages of dismal destruction. Hundreds of millions were ripening for ruin! People, with bright powers and amiable accomplishments, were moving down to endless woe! Nations were going abreast, in the broad way. Worshipping devils; and preparing to have their endless lot with them. Dear earthly friends were seen treasuring up wrath against the day of wrath. And those, as dear as our lives, were becoming vessels of wrath fitted for destruction. Most distressing case!

But that Kingdom of Christ will change the scene. It will bring salvation to the world. The hearts of the fathers will be turned to their children; and the hearts of the children to their fathers; And a people will be made ready prepared for the Lord. Nations will learn righteousness; and will participate in the sal. vation of God. Families and friends will have holy joy in each other. “Thy people shall all be righteous." "I will pour out my Spirit upon thy seed, and my blessing upon thine offspring.” "All shall know the Lord from the least unto the greatest." "All thy children shall be taught of God; and great shall be the peace of thy children.”

3. The influence of Satan among men will be utterly restrained. In the preceding ages, he deceives the nations; and destroys the world. He has vast influence to lead sinners captive at his will. He works in the children of disobedience. He is the father of lies; and leads his children to believe and propagate them. He comes with great wrath; upon which Heaven announ. ces; “Woe to the inhabiters of ihe earth and of the sea.” Spirits of devils collect the vast armies of the confederacy of the last days, against Christ. The wicked one thus has power to disseminate his infernal spirit, to deceive and to ruin.

But at the commencement of this Kingdom, he is bound and confined to hell, that he should not go out to deceive the nations any more, for a thousand years. This will be a blessed event; and renders that Kingdom very desirable.

4. Pure religion will then every where prevail. This will be most delightful. If there is now joy in heaven over one sinner that repenteth; how great will be the joy among those, who have the spirit of heaven, when all the millions on carth shall be penitent? Good people in all ages rejoice to hear, and much more to see, a shower of grace, where perhaps one to forty in a place is converted. How much greater will be the joy, when all are brought in, and Christ will “come down like rain upon the mown grass, and as showers that water the earth?" Christianity may be every where triumphant. The Church will "look forth as the morning, fair as the moon, clear as the sun, and terrible as an army with banners.” Men will call her, the beauty of perfection; the glory of the world.

Sabbaths will be sanctified; and the ordinances and means of grace most faithfully improved. Men will universally obcy the injunction; "Thou shalt keep my sabbaths, and reverence my sanctuary, I am the Lord.” The vile scenes of irreligion, relative to sabbaths, and the ordinances of grace, which are now glaring before the face of heaveu and earth, will then be no more. "And it shall come to pass, that from one sabbath to another, and from one new moon to another (i. c, on all proper occasions) shall ali flesh come to worship before me."

The numerous millions of people will flock to the house of God, as clouds, and as doves to their windows. And divine ordinances will be im. proved and honored. The following triumphant lan. guage relative to that day, will then be fulfilled. “Look upon Zion, the city of our solemnities; thine eyes shall see Jerusalem, a quiet habitation, a tabernacle which shall no: be taken down; not one of the stakes thereof shall ever be removed; neither shall any of the cords thereof be broken. But there the glorious Lord shall be unto us, a place of broad rivers and streams. For the Lord is our Judge, the Lord is our Lawgiver, the Lord is our King, he will save us.” “Thy teachers shall no more 'be removed into corners; but thine eyes shall see thy teachers.”

5. It will be a season of civil peace. This is abundantly ascertained, in the prophecies of that day. There will be no more the confused noise of the warrior, and garments rolled in blood. The bow will be broken; the spear cut asunder; the chariot burned in the fire; and wars will cease to the ends of the earth. The weapons of death will be turned into the implements of husbandry, and of the arts of peace.

Nation will ng more arm against nation. Neither shall they learn war any more.

The prophecies of this tenor, relative to that period, are express and abundant. Men will behold the past scenes of war, murder and blood, with horror and detestation.

6. That will be a season of great health, longevity, and outward prosperity. The following are among the predictions relative to that day. “And the inhabitant shall not say, I am sick:” “For as the days of a tree, are the days of my people; and mine elect shall long enjoy the work of their hands."

And much is said of the earth (at that day) yielding her increase; and the people dwelling in quiet habitations:—That they shall not build, and another inhabit the building; nor plant vineyards, and another possess them. But men shall long enjoy the work of their own hands. The earth, it is promised, shall yield her increase. Flocks and herds shall eat clean provender, and winnowed grain; Isa. xxx, 24; an indication of great prosperity and plenty. Many predictions indi. cate, that the curse will, in a degree, be taken off from the earth; so that the world will be a kind of Paradise. See Ps. lxxii, 16; Isa. vii, 22, 25. No more property will be lost in wars. Seas of wealth will not be expended for objects of pride, luxury, or ambition. But their mer. chandise and their hire shall be holiness to the Lord, (we are assured) to eat sufficiently, and for durable clothing. There will be property enough to supply the wants of all men; and benevolence enough to have it wisely applied to this object.

7. Civil government will then be perfectly subordinate to the interests of Zion. This is abundantly ascertained, by the inspired Oracles. "Kings shall be thy nursing fathers, and queens thy nursiog moth

« PreviousContinue »