Heavenly Wonders


“From what part of Heaven will this glorious City appear? We answer, from where the flaming sword is "guarding the way of the tree of life," and the Cherubims are stationed. John 1:51. Furgerson, the celebrated astronomer of the last century, in describing some of the many wonders in the Heavens, says "that the two bright clouds in the heavens at the south pole, called by mariners the clouds of Magelen, are by astronomers called cloudy stars, but the most remarkable of all the cloudy stars is that in the middle of Orion's Sword, where seven stars (of which three are very close together) seem to shine through a cloud, very lucid in the middle, but faint and ill defined about the edges. It looks like a GAP in the sky, through which one may see (as it were) part of a much brighter region. Although most of the spaces are but a few minutes of a degree in breadth, yet, since they are among the fixed stars, they must be spaces larger than what is occupied by our Solar System - (the Solar System includes the Planet Uranus, which is one thousand and eight hundred millions of miles from the Sun, the circumference of her orbit in which she revolves around the Sun is calculated to be three hundred and fourteen millions of miles) - and in which there seems to be a perpetual uninterrupted day among numberless worlds, which no human art can ever discover. - Furgerson's Treatise on Astronomy, edition A. D. 1770.
Out of ninety-three, Orion is the most striking and splendid constellation in the Heavens; her centre is mid way between the poles of heaven and directly over the equator of the Earth, and is visible from all the habitable parts of the Globe. On her southeastern quarter is the beautiful star Sirius, (one of the most magnificent in the Heavens,) and on the northwest is stationed the Pleiades or seven Stars. "She rises at noon about the 9th of March" "and sets at noon about the 21st of June," and comes to the meridian January 23rd, at 9 P. M. She is now to be seen for a little while, in the evening twilight, about one hour high, with the Planets Jupiter and Mars on her north and northwest. When the Lord answered Job out of the whirl wind, and demanded of him to answer to the wonderful questions which he was now about to put to him, he says "Canst thou bind the sweet influences of the Pleiades or loose the bands of ORION." When Amos, the Prophet exhorted his Israel to repentance, he endeavored to impress their minds with the power of God by adverting to the wonderful phenomena in the Heavens, by saying, "Seek him that maketh the Seven Stars and Orion," etc. etc.
HUGGENS, its first discoverer, gives the following description of it: "Astronomers place three stars close together in the Sword of Orion; and when I viewed the middle-most with a Telescope, in the year 1656, there appeared in the place of that one, twelve other stars; among these three that almost touch each other, and four more besides appeared twinkling as through a cloud, so that the space about them seemed much brighter than the rest of the heaven, which appearing wholly blackish, by reason of the fair weather, was seen as through a curtain opening, through which one had a free view into another region,
which was more enlightened. I have frequently observed the same appearance in the same place without any alteration; so that it is likely that this wonder, whatever it may be in itself, has been there from all times; but I never took notice of any thing like it among the rest of the fixed stars."
Sir WILLIAM HERSCHEL says, "If stars of the eighth magnitude are to be considered at an average of eight times further distant than those of the first, then this nebula cannot be supposed to be less than 320,000,000,000,000, three hundred and twenty thousand billions of miles from the earth. If its diameter at this distance subtend an angle of ten minutes, which it nearly does, its magnitude must be utterly inconceivable. It has been calculated that it must exceed 2,000,000,000,000,000,000, or two trillions of times the dimensions of the Sun, vast and incomprehensible as these dimensions are." - See Dick's Sidereal Heavens, Vol.VIII. pp. 181,184.
Says the author - "Suffice it to say that such an enormous mass of luminous matter was not created in vain, but serves a purpose in the divine arrangements corresponding to its magnitude and the nature of its luminosity, and to the wisdom and intelligence of him whose power brought it into existence. It doubtless subserves some important purpose, even at the present moment, to worlds and beings within the range of its influence. But the ultimate in all its bearings and relations, may perhaps remain to be evolved during the future ages of an interminable existence." Page 184.
Again, says the ILLUSTRATED LONDON NEWS of April 19th, 1845: "Marvelous rumors are afloat respecting the Astronomical discoveries made by Lord Rosse's monster Telescope. (This is said to be sixty feet long and its great speculum or reflecting large glass measures six feet in diameter and weighs three and three-fourths tons, and is calculated to discover glorious objects in the Heavens, to man heretofore unknown.) It is stated that Regulus, instead of being a sphere, is ascertained to be a Disc; and stranger still, that the nebula in the belt of Orion (meaning the bright place before stated) is a universal system, a sun with planets moving round it, as the earth and her fellows move around our glorious luminary."
Thus we see from all the testimony adduced, (and we could give much more were it necessary) that here is a most wonderful and unexplainable phenomena in the heavens: a gap in the sky, more than 11,314,000,000 miles in circumference. Says the celebrated HUGGENS, "I never saw anything like it among the rest of the fixed stars - a free view into another region more enlightened." I have had the pleasure (with others) during the past month, to see this wonder in the Heavens a number of evenings, through J. Delano, Jr's. excellent Telescope.
It has been supposed by some, that this wonderful phenomena seen through the sword of Orion, has passed through some material change since it was first discovered by HUGGENS, one hundred and ninety years ago. On this point Sir John Herschel says: "When it is considered how difficult it is to represent such an object duly, and how entirely its appearance will differ even in the same Telescope, according to the clearness of the air, or other temporary causes, we shall readily admit that we have no evidence of change that can be relied on."
As I had before partially examined the Bible view of the opening Heavens, I think I never shall forget the thrill that pervaded my whole being, the first time that I saw this celestial wonder coursing its way down the western Heavens! Since then, when I have viewed it through the Telescope, my mind would instinctively revert to Moses's description of the liberated children of Abraham, passing through the Red Sea, with that wonderful miracle "the pillar of fire, between them and the Egyptian Host." My thoughts still running onward, from type to antitype, "God looking through the cloud of fire in the morning watch;" at once vanquished the enemies of his chosen people. Exodus 14:24,27.
So in this morning watch God will not only look through this mighty space, (black on one side with the stormy cloud,) but, as the Prophet Joel says, he will "Roar out of Zion, and utter his voice from Jerusalem; and the Heavens and the Earth shall shake: but the Lord will be the hope of his people. - So shall ye know that I am the Lord your God dwelling in Zion my holy mountain: then shall Jerusalem be holy." ("CLEANSED.") 3:16,17.
A western view, with an inverting eyepiece, gives it the appearance of a stormy dark cloud, with a full moon just shut in behind it, and three bright stars looking through the cloud. This dark looking cloud is called the gap in the sky. This constellation measures about one thousand miles from North to South, and five hundred from East to West, and is visible to all the inhabitants of the earth.
Here then is a mighty Image (as represented on the map of the Heavens,) stretched across mid heaven, with his gold and silver epaulettes (four hundred and eighty miles apart) and two burning stars denoting his Northern and Southern extremities: the golden one on his upraised left foot, the other of silver on his right knee, answering to the one on his left shoulder; girded with his brilliant studded belt and flaming sword; "doubtless, to subserve some important purpose even at the present moment." Let it be distinctly understood, with what has already been stated by the Astronomers, that this "constellation is one of the most brilliant and noted in the Heavens," "that its nebula, (according to the celebrated Sir WILLIAM HERSCHEL) far exceeds any other object, and its magnitude utterly inconceivable, two trillions times larger than the Sun; while the Sun is allowed to be thirteen hundred thousand times larger than our globe. That it "never yet has been resolved into stars by the highest power of the telescope," "and there is no evidence of any change, even if it were discovered to be resolvable, (as is stated by a writer somewhat acquainted with lord Rosse's monster telescope.) If so, it goes to strengthen the argument of its first discoverer, who says "through which one had a free view into another region which was more enlightened."
If, then, there is nothing to be seen on Earth or in the Heavens except what Joshua and David saw, 5:13,14; 1 Chro. 21:15,16, that looks like this constellation, would it be thought strange for a Christian to believe that the Prophet Moses had recorded for our instruction the very answer to be given, viz. "to keep the way of the tree of life."
I have now given a general description of this celestial wonder, but some may still doubt whether any thing can be ascertained with respect to objects so far removed. If the most accurate calculations had not already been made in respect to many of the heavenly bodies, how could the tempest tossed mariner, after being driven for days, and sometimes weeks, sailing on all points of the compass, and perhaps, not have known his position from the time he had taken his departure from his port, only by dead reckoning,
(nothing in sight but sea and sky,) ascertain his true position? Just look, - there stands the captain, on some convenient part of the deck of his ship, holding in his hand a three cornered instrument, called a Sextant, measuring the distance between the sun and moon, or if it be in the night, between the moon and some lunar star, (which is millions of millions of miles removed from the Solar System,) noting the moment by his watch when he brings the outer or inner edges of these two celestial objects to touch; then measuring their distance from the horizon. With the help of a Nautical Almanac, (which had been published years before,) in the course of twenty minutes he so confidently ascertains his position, (however strange it may appear to landsmen,) that he would, after running ten or one hundred miles more or less, as the case may be, direct one of his crew to go to the mast head, and tell him at the same time in what direction to look for land. Presently the cry would come down, thrilling through every soul in the ship, "Land ho!" "Where away?" "Off the starboard bow, sir, where you told me to look." Such instances are not rare, but of daily occurrence. "How could that be? says one, "it looks like a miracle!" So it would be, if the great God had not directed these celestial objects to move in perfect harmony. A place for every one, and every one in its place.
One at a certain time said, "Canst thou by searching find out God? Canst thou find out the Almighty to perfection?" The wise man answers, "No man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end." Eccl. 3:2; Job 11:7. These texts alone teach us that we yet know but little of the power and wisdom of the Sovereign of the universe, whose spirit fills unlimited space; which space is undoubtedly coeval and coextensive with eternity; studded with millions on millions of worlds, each moving in its appropriate Sphere, like our own Planet. But a still greater wonder is the thousands and millions of blazing Comets, even in the Solar System, (Dick, vol. 8: p. 339,) seemingly sailing with a roving commission, sweeping their burning trails all over the perceptible universe of God, each moving in its proper Orbit! Some of them shooting, at times, almost with the velocity of lightning! And yet, with what precision does the Astronomer calculate their appearing again after hundreds and thousands of years, without interfering with any
of the celestial scenery. Just turn over to the second page of your Almanac and learn with what admirable accuracy the Astronomer has calculated, even to a moment of time, when the moon of yesterday will be passing under the sun, and cause the darkness to be seen and felt.
Some minds may be troubled about the flaming sword being placed at the East of the Garden, or that we could see the Eastern side. This will be better understood by looking at the motion of our Planet. It is said by Astronomers that this Earth in its annual motion, is booming round the sun at the rate of nineteen miles per second; at the same time her diurnal motion from East to West is at the rate of ten miles per minute: consequently all the objects we see in the heavens, comes from the East, and among the rest this glorious constellation of Orion, all just as natural as it is for us to see the Sun rise in the East; and in the same direction the world will soon see what the Second Advent believer has long and anxiously been waiting for: viz. the "glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ." Titus 2:13. Now let us take another view; not through Lord Rosse's, but God's great Telescope, which "declares the end from the beginning." Isa.46:10.


“The patriarch Jacob said to his sons, that "God Almighty appeared unto him at Luz, which is Bethel." Gen.48:3; 25:26. Here, while a Pilgrim traveler and stranger, he had laid himself down for the night, he "dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to Heaven; and behold, the angels of God ascending and descending on it." Gen.28:12. Seventeen hundred and ninety years after this, the Lord says to Nathaniel, "hereafter ye shall see H E A V E N O P E N, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the son of man." This, then, is in the future. Next in order, Ezekiel has a vision, in the thirtieth "year of the Babylonish captivity by the river Chebar." He says, "the Heavens were O P E N E D, and I saw visions of God." He proceeds to describe his vision; please read Chap. 1:5,10;24, 28. He sees as the appearance of a man -describes also the stormy cloud with the brightness round about it; he also hears a voice from the firmament, and says that the Lord God spake to him. Now see Chap. 10:4,5; 19,20. Here he says "the Cherubims stood at the door of the East gate (where Moses says they were placed) of the Lord's House, and the glory of the God of Israel was over them above." "This is the living creature that I saw under the God of Israel by the river Chebar, and I knew that they were Cherubims." Is it not plain that Ezekiel has shown the same place and station of the Cherubims which Moses has, on the East side, keeping the way of the tree of life. Jacob calls them angels, and cries out in terror, "How dreadful is this place, this is none other but the House of God and this is the gate (or opening) of Heaven." 17 v. Isaiah in a vision sees "the throne high and lifted up, and hears the voice of God," as did the others. Let us examine here a few moments to see what Cherubims are, and their use. One writer says, "they appear to be servants of God sent to do his will." Hear God concerning them, "and there will I meet with thee and I will commune with thee from between the two Cherubims which are upon the Ark of the testimony, of all things which I will give thee in commandment unto the children of Israel." Exodus 25:16,22. PROOF - "And Hezekiah (in his distress) prayed before the Lord, and said O Lord God of Israel which dwelleth between the Cherubims," 2 Kings, 19:15. "And God sent the prophets to tell him that his prayer was heard." v.20.
"The Lord reigneth let the people tremble; he sitteth between the Cherubims, let the earth be moved." Ps. 99:1. Then here is where we are to look for the Paradise of God, the Holy City, and where we shall soon hear the voice of God, for he "sitteth above between the Cherubims," as is represented in the old Tabernacle and Temple. "For see, saith he, that thou make all things according to the pattern shewed to thee in the mount." Heb. 8:5; 9:5. St. John also describes them, and tells what their occupations were in heaven. Rev. 5:11,12.
Now we will proceed with the testimony concerning the opening heavens. John the Baptist bears record, that when he was coming up out of the water from baptizing the Saviour, he "saw the heavens O P E N E D (or cloven or rent) and the spirit like a dove descending upon him, and there came a voice from heaven," etc. Mark 1:10,11; Luke 3:20,22; Matt. 3:16,17; John 1:32.
Here is the opening heavens, and the voice of God as before. When Jesus was transfigured on the Mount the Disciples saw the cloud and heard the voice of God.
When the Saviour ascended from Mount Olivet, his disciples saw him: the two shining ones said, "Ye men of Galilee why stand ye gazing up into heaven? (it must have been open to their view, or they could not have looked into heaven) this same Jesus which is taken up from you into heaven shall come again in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven." Acts 1:11. Then of course, it will be from the same place.
Let us not be deceived about this, he has not come yet.
Again, St. Luke says of Stephen, the martyr, (while he was surrounded by a blood-thirsty mob, gnashing on him with their teeth, because of the burning truths which he uttered,) "Being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up steadfastly into heaven, (at a certain point) and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God: and said, behold, I see the heavens opened, and the son of man standing on the right hand of God." Was Stephen mistaken? I think not - it was his dying testimony.
But here is a more singular case still, two miracles on two individuals of different nations to establish and fulfill Daniel's prophecy of the seventieth week upon his people (the Jews). The time had now come and something out of the ordinary way was to mark this epoch of time. Now look yonder in Caesarea, there is a Gentile in a vision, he sees an angel, which directs him to send into Judea for a certain Jew named Peter. Where is he? At a place called Joppa. (the sea port of Jerusalem,) lying in a trance, on the top of a house, and made to feel "very hungry, (that he might more readily and willingly follow the teachings of the voice and spirit of God to proclaim salvation to the Gentiles, for he was one of the stubborn ones, that held to the present truth; and perhaps could not be prevailed upon to yield in another way.) Just so with his stubborn brethren, who called him to an account for going in to the Gentiles, but after he had rehearsed the whole matter to them, "then they believed and glorified God, for granting repentance to the Gentiles." But what was the miracle? Peter says he "saw heaven opened and a certain vessel descending unto him as it had been a great sheet knit at the four corners, and let down to the earth. This was done thrice (or three times) and the vessel was received up again into Heaven," and the voice of the Lord came to him twice, "saying what God has cleansed call not thou common." Acts 10. and 11. ch. Here ends the confirming of the Covenant with many for one week. Daniel. 9:27, Hebrews 2:3.
The Apostle Paul in relating his vision says that he was "caught up to the third Heavens into Paradise". 2 Cor. 12:2, 4. St. John the "beloved disciple," in his solitary confinement on the Isle of Patmos, not only has the same view of the opening Heavens, and hears the same voice, but was called up there in the spirit, and immediately he was there, describing the glories of Heaven. Please read his description of the glorious picture before and around the throne, (from whence the Prophets and Apostles already quoted, have looked through God's all magnifying Telescope, and was burdened with the cry, "This is none other but the House of God and this is the gate of Heaven!" "And lo, the Heavens were opened"!! "I see Heaven open"!!! At the same time and place God speaks with them.) V:6 - here he sees the Lamb. Also 7:15; 8:3, 5, and 12:5. Jesus the Son was caught up there 20:11, and 21:5. Same thing in the 4:8 v. he has Isaiah's view of the Seraphims and uses nearly the same language in describing them, and says with Isaiah they rest neither day nor night, saying, Holy, Holy, Holy Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come, 8 v., and in the fifth chapter he says "And I beheld and heard the voices of many angels round about the throne, saying with a loud voice, worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power," etc. etc. Ezekiel's Cherubims and John's Angels are undoubtedly the same. John's four beasts, Isaiah's Seraphims, and Ezekiel's four wheels are typical of the four grand divisions of the Camp of Israel, around the Tabernacle in the wilderness, all marshaled and arrayed by God's direction with their four different standards, (answering to the four faces or sides to Ezekiel's wheel, and the faces of John's four beasts). Judah, with the Lion in the front on the East. (Num. ch. 2.) all ready to move at a moment's warning. Even where the "cloudy pillar by day or of fire by night;" which rested on the Tabernacle, should direct. The Levites, the ministers of God, all moving in perfect harmony, with the Ark containing the Commandments of God; close after which, in the midst of the camp, in solid columns follows the taken down tabernacle. All moving after and watching the direction of this "fiery pillar by night," and the moment it ceased to move the camp halted. The Tabernacle was raised, and the Commandments of God, (the keeping of which will secure an entrance into the Anti-type, the real Heavenly Tabernacle, that is to be "with men," Rev. 21:3; 22:14.) restored to their proper place beneath, and under the guardian care of the Cherubims between which his people were directed to pray unto him." Exodus 25:22.
John also has described in the above, mentioned texts, much of the furniture particularized in the old Tabernacle, which Paul says are "patterns of the true." Heb. 9:23, 24. Conclusive evidence that he was in the "true (or real) Tabernacle which God pitched, and not man." Hebrews 8:2. The same City which Abraham "looked for, whose builder and maker is God." The Psalmist also agrees with Paul, and says, "The Lord has prepared his throne in the Heavens." Paul says, that Jesus is there. See Heb. 8:1, 2; and 9:24. Jesus says, "he that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame and am set down with my Father in his throne." Rev. 3:21. Now, is it not evident that God has but one sanctuary, and that his throne is there; and one place for that sanctuary, and that place in the third heavens? Why then, should there be more than one way to approach it, or for it to come from, namely, by "the Cherubims and flaming sword, stationed there, to guard the way?"
The editor of the Day Star asks, "why we stand gazing up into the heaven; can you (meaning, I suppose, any one) tell where this same Jesus is coming from?" 2nd. "Can you prove God the Father to be in one place, in any greater degree and power, than he is in any and every, and every other place?"
If we have not already offered sufficient evidence, in answer to these two most important questions to the true believer in Christ, we will try a little further; for if we cannot understand, nor in any way comprehend, the teachings of the divine word, in respect to the second coming and kingdom of Jesus Christ, the location of the heavenly Sanctuary, the new Jerusalem, God's dwelling place, other than is figuratively discerned, then, I say, we that truly believe in God, "are of all men the most miserable;" and the sooner we hoist the Shaker's flag, and bring too under the lee of their camp, the better; for I should
despair of ever getting my anchor down "within the vale." In the first place then, we say, Jesus has not yet come the second time, in the manner he promised us. For when speaking of his coming, he says emphatically, "Then shall THEY SEE the Son of man coming in the clouds of Heaven," etc. Now, according to this description, I'll venture the assertion, that there is not a particle of proof in the universe, that one solitary individual has seen him. Hence, I for one, am gazing up into heaven looking, and unwaveringly believing, that this, his precious promise, will soon be realized. But you say, he has come in his saints. Well, I say there is no more proof of this, than there was that he was in his apostle's, eighteen hundred years ago - for they certainly wrought many wonderful miracles, and preached with as much power; and the mighty weapons they used, was the death, resurrection and second coming of Christ. Now did the Apostle's ever teach such a doctrine, that Jesus had come in them the second time? And further, I cannot believe that he will be seen any sooner in Ohio, than in New-England or New-York. Again, we answer to the first and second questions, combined - Rev. 4:2. Here is a throne, with one seated upon it. Is there any proof to be found that this throne was on the Isle of Patmos, Rome, or any other city, or place in the globe? Will it not be conceded by all Bible students, that the Lord God Almighty, the Father, is seated upon it? Does not the Seraphims, which are continually crying, Holy, Holy, Holy, in the eighth verse, say so? Who was found worthy to come and take the book out of the right hand of him that sat upon this throne? Did he take it out of his own hand? No, it does not read so. Who, then? John says, it "was the Lamb." Others said, it "was the Lion of the tribe of Judah." We say, "the Son of the Father." Here, then, where the door was opened into heaven, John saw the Father and the Son together, at one time and in one place, transacting business; at the sight of which, ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands and thousands of angels cried aloud, "worthy is the Lamb," etc.; and every creature under heaven acknowledged it! Verse 11,13. I am aware that it will be said this is symbolical language. Allow me to quote an extract from a celebrated writer. "Even the symbolic parts of a vision have a mixed character. When real persons, the highest in their kind are mentioned by their proper titles, there is no room for symbols; the objects represent themselves, God and Christ and the good angels; Satan and evil spirits, and redeemed saints on earth or in heaven, are never emblems. Forsake this maxim, and symbolic prophecy becomes a chaos, in which nothing is fixed, and where fancy runs riot in its own excesses."
But you say, God is a spirit. (There is no doubt but what his spirit pervades all space, and every thing in it that has life.) But to the testimony. "Ye have neither heard his voice nor seen his shape." John 5:37. Did Jesus contradict the Patriarchs and Prophets? No, no! He here told his persecutors what they had not seen nor heard; he did not say he had no voice or shape. Who did? 1st. Moses. "And I will cover thee with my hand while I pass by; and I will take away mine hand and thou shalt see my back parts, but my face shall not be seen." Exodus 33:22,23. 2nd. The "eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous, and his ears are open unto their cry. The face of the Lord are against them that do evil: the Lord heareth." Psalms 34:15,17. Again, the "Ancient of days did sit, whose garment was white as snow, and the hair of his head like the pure wool." Does not this prove a shape, features, and voice, ascribed to God, the same as to man. "And God said let us make man in our own image, after our likeness; so God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him: male and female created he them." Gen. 1:26, 27. Paul says of Jesus, "Who is the image of God, (this can't be spiritually so) the first born of every creature; who being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God." Eph. 2:5, 6. Now to the Hebrews - "Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his son, who being the brightness of his glory, and the EXPRESS IMAGE of his person." Now turn to the history of Rome for a moment - read how LENTULUS describes the Saviour to the Roman Senate. Here he describes his stature, countenance, his eyes, beautiful flowing hair, his wisdom, etc, and finally closes with the following: "A man for his singular beauty far exceeding all the sons of men." Paul says, he is the "express image" of God. (I understand him to say that he looks just like him.) Oh, says one, this man is a Unitarian! So then was Paul, or I have not quoted him right.
And Daniel, the prophet, teaches the same doctrine. "I saw in the night visions: and behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, (described in the ninth verse) and they brought him near before him; and there was given him dominion and glory, and a kingdom, never to be destroyed." Dan. 7:13,14. Now we all admit this personage was Jesus Christ; for no being on earth or in heaven, has ever had the promise of an everlasting kingdom but him. And does not the Ancient of days give it to him? Would it not be absurd to say that he gave it to himself? How then can it be said (or proved) as it is by some, that the Son is the Ancient of days; - this passage, and the one in fifth Revelations, distinctly prove God and his Son to be two persons in heaven. Jesus says, "I proceeded forth and came from God: neither came I of myself, but he sent me." John 8:42. "I come forth from the Father, and am come into the world; again, I leave the world and go to the Father." (Does he remain in the same place?) "We are confident I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and present with the Lord." Paul.
"The Scripture testimony accounts for no other spirits but those seen in the shape of men." One of the three, which came to Abraham was the Lord. Genesis 18. The Angel Gabriel was called the "man Gabriel." Daniel. 9. The angel, which appeared to Gideon was called the Lord. I think here is sufficient proof from the Scriptures to justify the true believer to be still looking for a personal Saviour, and that God the Father is a person, and looks like Jesus and we like him; and God has a habitation where he dwells, as the Scriptures testify:
"And I John saw the Holy City New Jerusalem coming down from God out of Heaven."
Another writer in the same paper undertakes to prove that this same City has begun to appear; has been developing itself since the fall of 1844. Who has seen this City? O, he says, it is evident, that it is the saints. Is it possible that the Saints have been coming down from Heaven this eighteen months! Why, there is not the least particle of proof that the righteous dead have yet been caught up? Thes. 4:16,17. I can readily believe that both of these brethren have been fearless advocates for the truth, and I do not doubt their sincerity. They have clearly proved that they are not seeking the applause of the world. I sincerely hope that they will not get so far into the fire one side of the "highway" as some are in the "slough of despond" on the other. The main business of the Devil is now to make God's people change their course, and it is matter of no moment to him on which side of the "highway" they fall. In either case he will make sure of his prey. God help us to be on our watch. The great error here has arisen in consequence of taking the symbolical meaning and rejecting the true. The author of the Apocalyptic Dictionary, R. C. SHEMEALL, says, "Holy City, Jerusalem. Used symbolically of the present visible Church; Literally, that CITY which comes down from God." Let us examine a few texts: "Go and cry in the ears of Jerusalem." Jeremiah 2:2. "And he carried away all Jerusalem." Kings 24:14. "The cry of Jerusalem is gone up." Jer.14:2. "Jerusalem has sinned they have seen her nakedness, yea she sigheth." Lam.1:8. "Jerusalem is a menstrous woman." 17 v. "Awake, awake stand up O Jerusalem." Isa.51:17. "Arise and set down O Jerusalem" 52:2. "O Jerusalem wash thine heart from wickedness." Jer.4:14. "Cut off thine hair O Jerusalem and cast it away." Jeremiah 6:8. Here we see that old Jerusalem is personified. The prophets exhort her to "stand up" and "set down," and "awake from sleep," and "wash her heart," and "be instructed," to "cut off her hair and cast it away." She is also called a "menstrous woman," and said to "cry and sigh," and be "carried away." A "tumultuous city;" a "joyous city;" a "glad city." "Thou art comely, O my love, as Jerusalem." Songs 6:4. "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest," etc. Now this language never could be understood, unless there was 1st: a Jerusalem, people and government; neither could we understand what is said of the new Jerusalem in many places, without associating organization, as the "Zion of God," "the Zion of the Holy One of Israel." Isaiah 60:14. "Like the kingdom of God among the Pharisees." Luke 17:21. This old Jerusalem at his second coming would be the place for the capital of his kingdom; his disciples the subjects; he their king. As also in Daniel 8:13 - connecting the "Host (God's people) and sanctuary." Paul to the Galatians says, "Agar is Mount Sinai in Arabia, and answereth to Jerusalem, which now is, and is in bondage with her children. But Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us all." Can this testimony be credited? Did not "Abraham look for a city which had foundations?" Paul also says of the pilgrims and strangers on the earth, that they "were seeking an heavenly country for God hath prepared for them a City"! Hebrews 11. In the past tense; then it cannot be developing now in his Saints, but they are preparing to enter the CITY.
When John was describing the City in 21. Rev. he said he saw no temple there "for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the Temple of it." Now Peter and Paul distinctly describe the Saints (not the city) coming to this Mount Zion, and Temple, which makes it perfect and complete. Peter says of his "spiritual house," "Ye also as lively stones, [be ye built - margin.] up a spiritual house." 1 Pet. 2:5. To whom coming as unto a living stone. 4 v. For, says sixth verse, behold I lay in Zion a chief corner stone. (Jesus.) Peter says of this Temple, be ye built. Paul says it is growing. Read how admirably he describes it to the Ephesians. "Fellow citizens with the Saints, and of the household of God. And are built upon the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, (see John's twelve gates representing the twelve tribes in Rev. 21:12; and the twelve Apostles of the Lamb representing the twelve foundations of the wall, 14th verse, which encloses the whole,) Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone, In whom all the building fitly framed
G R O W E T H I N T O an holy Temple in the Lord; In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God. Eph. 2:19,22. His Epistle to the Hebrews shows how they are brought together and where. "But ye are come unto Mount Zion, and unto the City of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels; To the general assembly and church of the first born, which are (enrolled - margin) in heaven; And to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect, and to Jesus the Mediator of the new Covenant." Now has not Paul distinctly described what the Saints shall come to. O but, say you, we have already come. No, no, friend, you are too fast. Paul will explain: "Mount Zion the City the Heavenly Jerusalem to the innumerable company of Angels (or Cherubims) to the Church of the first born and to God, and to Jesus." 12:22, 24. Now where? See 25,28, when he speaketh from heaven. His voice once shook the earth, but now he is about to speak and shake "heaven also, wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, (this is after every thing else is moved,) therefore wait until God shall speak in the language of Joel, and "Roar out of Zion and utter his voice from Jerusalem." Paul shows the Corinthians how it is finished. Hear him: "What agreement hath the temple of God with idols? For ye are the Temple of the living God, as God hath said I will dwell in them, and walk in them, and I will be their God and they shall be my people." Then God and Christ and immortal Saints, constitute the Temple in this glorious City of Zion.
I have been thus particular in quoting the Scriptures, in answer to the questions proposed, to endeavor if possible to dispel some of the thick darkness and mist of Shakerism, Quakerism, Swedenborgianism, and all the Spiritualisms that now seem to be settling down all over the moral world, and shutting out even the very light from the horizon. To my mind this spiritualizing system, when God's word admits of a literal interpretation, and - according to rule - the literal first; is, to use a sailor phrase, like a ship groping her way into Boston Bay in the night, in a thick snow with the moon at full. Nothing could be more deceptive to the mariner; the flying clouds at one moment light up the firmament by the thinness of its vapor, (encouraging the mariner to believe that he shall now see the light house) the next moment it grows darker, and so it continues to deceive them, until of a sudden the breakers are roaring all around them - the ship is dashed upon the rocks - one general cry goes aloft for mercy! All hope is forever gone - ship and mariners strewed all over the beach! Good God! Help us to steer clear of these spiritual interpretations of Thy word, where it is made so clear that the second coming and kingdom of Christ will be as literal and real, as the events that transpired at the first Advent, now recorded in history.
....Hear him: "When the son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he be seated upon the throne of his glory." Matt. 25.31.... PROOF - "And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain." "And he that sat upon the throne said, behold I make all things new, and he said unto me write, for these words are true and faithful." Rev. 21:4,5. ...Why, then, all this shouting about a figurative fulfillment, while yourselves and the world are groping through the "snow storm."

1846 JB, BP1 22