“And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions: and also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my spirit.” (Joel 2:28-29)
Through the Prophet Joel, the Lord draws attention to the fact that the Holy Spirit will be just as important during the Millennial Age as it has been during the Gospel Age. The above passage is addressed to Zion (Joel 2:23), which represents the Kingdom (Isa. 60:14; Rev. 14:1), and stands for the Lord Jesus and His faithful followers. It is in “those days” – the Gospel Age – that the Spirit is poured out for these. During the Millennial Age, “afterward,” His Spirit will be poured out generally for the world of mankind, “all flesh.” It will then bring the world of mankind back into harmony with God under the terms of the New Covenant, through the merits of the dear Redeemer’s sacrifice.
The order of this blessing is reversed in the prophetic statement, quite probably to obscure the matter until the proper time, and thus to hide some of the length and breadth and height and depth of God’s Plan, until the “due time” for it to be known and appreciated. Consequently Joel 2:29 refers to the Gospel Age and Joel 2:28 refers to the Millennial Age.
Examining these verses we find that they identify six saved classes: (1) “your sons,” (2) “your daughters,” (3) “your old men,” (4) “your young men,” (5) “the servants,” and (6) “the handmaids.”
SERVANTS AND HANDMAIDS
We will first consider the two classes developed during the Gospel Age. The class referred to as “the servants” is the Little Flock. We notice that the time of their development is limited to the Gospel Age: “Upon the servants . . . in those days will I pour out my spirit.” Like the rest of mankind these were born under the curse (Rom. 5:12-19; 1 Cor. 15:21-22; Eph. 2:3); but unlike the rest of mankind their hearts have trusted the Lord even when they could not trace Him. (2 Cor. 5:7) They have accepted Jesus as their Savior, thereby attaining to justification through faith (Rom. 3:21-26; Rom. 4:1-12), and have then sought to grow in Truth and Righteousness.
They have responded to His drawings until ready to take a second step – consecration – answering God’s invitation to yield themselves to Him as living sacrifices. (Rom. 12:1) He has given them His Holy Spirit – begotten them of His Spirit. (John 3:3; Jas. 1:18; Acts 5:32) He has helped them to overcome self, sin, error and the world (Rev. 3:21), and to work out their own salvation by self-denial and world-denial, by watchfulness and prayer, by the study, practice and spread of His Word, and by suffering for loyalty to His Word. (Phil 2:12-13; 1 Pet. 5:10; 2 Pet. 1:5-11) They have been His witnesses in the world for Truth and Righteousness. (Acts 1:8)
The hope He has given them is the attainment of the Divine nature and joint-heirship with Christ. (2 Pet. 1:4; Rom. 8:17; 2 Tim. 2:11-12) These blessings they will attain in the First Resurrection, if they have been faithful until death. (Rev. 2:10; Rev. 20:4-6)
Closely related to the Little Flock is another class called “the handmaids,” and elsewhere in the Bible called a Great Multitude. (Rev. 7:9; Rev. 19:6) This class we call the Great Company; the individuals of this class were originally invited through the High Calling (Phil. 3:14) to the Divine nature and joint-heirship with Christ. (Eph. 4:4) They have failed to keep faithfully their consecration vows, and therefore, have had to be remanded to a secondary class. They were not called to this position. The Lord provided a secondary place for them, even though they were only measurably faithful, because they still loved the Lord, and had not become unfaithful enough to be utterly cast off into Second Death. They are the only one of the elect classes to be remanded, but they will finally escape with their lives, after losing the prize of the High Calling. (1 Cor. 3:15; Heb. 2:15; Jude 22-23) However, they will still be included in the “church of the firstborn” of this Gospel Age. (Heb. 12:23)
The Little Flock and the Great Company, it will be noticed, have been developed during the Gospel Age – the age in which Jesus and the Apostles labored, the age in which the great Apostasy developed. At the end of the Gospel Age, the Lord has restored the primitive teachings and practices of Christianity under the supervision and leadership of That Servant.
We now turn to the consideration of the four classes of whom Joel 2:28 treats. While this verse describes the blessings and works of these four classes during the Millennium, two of these classes will have been developed before the Millennium and the other two will be developed during the Millennium.
OLD MEN AND YOUNG MEN
We understand the phrase “your old men” to mean those we refer to as Ancient Worthies, the faithful of the Old Testament. This class is called “ancients” in Isa. 24:23, this being from the same Hebrew word that is translated “old men” in Joel 2:28. We choose to call them Ancient Worthies because they are spoken of as those “Of whom the world was not worthy.” (Heb. 11:38) Other scriptures refer to this class as “the elders.” (Psa. 107:32; Heb. 11:2)
In Hebrews Chapter 11, we are given a long list of Ancient Worthies who were prominent for their characters and their works. (Heb. 11:4-32) Many others are later referred to who are not identified by name. (Heb. 11:33-40) The Ancient Worthies were the heroes of faith before Christ came in His First Advent. God used them as His representatives, servants and witnesses in their times, and through some of them He gave us the Old Testament Scriptures. Although they were unaware of it, He also used them and events of their lives to type certain future persons, classes and events in His plan. Because they lived before Christ’s death, they could not receive the actual cancellation of the death sentence inherited by the entire human race from Adam, and they could not become sons of God and joint-heirs with Christ. (John 1:12-13; Rom. 8:17; Gal. 4:3-5)
Yet God did give them a tentative justification through their faith in His Promises. (Rom. 4:3-9, 17-23; Heb. 11:7) Through their faith-justification they were privileged to be servants and friends of God. (Heb. 3:5; Jas. 2:23) God did not offer them the privilege of becoming Kings with Jesus and partakers with Him of the Divine nature; for such promises were not given until the beginning of the Gospel Age. (1 Pet. 1:10-12; Heb. 2:3-4; Heb. 11:38-39; 2 Tim. 1:10; Luke 16:16) The Ancient Worthies who preceded Jesus, the forerunner of these Kings (Heb. 6:20; Heb. 12:1-2), could not share in this heavenly calling. John the Baptizer, who died before Jesus’ death, was the last of the Ancient Worthy class, and Jesus assures us John will not be of the heavenly class when He says, “He that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.” (Matt. 11:11)
Although these faithful Ancient Worthies will not attain the First Resurrection as the Little Flock do, they will be privileged to share in a “better resurrection” than that of the world. (Heb. 11:35) They will attain perfection immediately upon awakening from the grave (“just men made perfect” – Heb. 12:22-23), whereas the world will be raised in the same condition as when they went into the grave. It will require the entire thousand years to bring the world back to perfection. These Ancient Worthies will attain the honor of being “princes in all the earth” during the Millennium, and their work will be to rule as judges and teachers. (Psa. 45:16; Isa. 1:26)
Moving on to the class referred to as “your young men,” we notice that they are linked in standing and in work with the “old men.” Since we call the latter the Ancient Worthies, we call the “young men” the Youthful Worthies. These contrasting names are appropriate for another reason. As the Ancient Worthies appeared in God’s Plan before the door was opened to the High Calling, the Youthful Worthies appear in God’s Plan after the door to the High Calling is closed.
According to the Bible, the opportunity of entering the High Calling was to close after the full number of the Elect had been chosen. (Rom. 11:25) This synchronizes with the end of the reaping of the Harvest from 1874 to 1914. But as many desired to and did serve God faithfully before the opportunity to enter the High Calling was opened, so since the opportunity to enter the High Calling has closed many desire to and do serve God faithfully. Since they show the same spirit of devotion to God as the Ancient Worthies, God purposes to associate them with the Ancient Worthies in Millennial and Post-Millennial rewards and service. An entrance to this class will be available in the end of this age for all who come to the Lord in full consecration, and will continue until this age ends – or until Restitution sets in and a way is opened for the world of mankind.
Commenting on the status of those who present themselves in consecration after the close of the High Calling, That Servant noted that since God is unchangeable, He is always pleased for any to devote their lives wholly and unreservedly to doing His will. (See Reprint 4836) His advice then to all who love the Lord and who desire to be in complete fellowship with Him was the same message that has gone forth throughout this age: “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice.” (Rom. 12:1)
It is because the Youthful Worthies have the faith of Abraham that they will be blessed with him and have the privilege of participating in the blessing of all nations. (Gal. 3:6-9) Having this faith quality, they heed the Lord’s invitation to consecrate; they give Him their hearts. (Prov. 23:26) There being no opportunity for them to win a crown with Christ, He does not beget them of His Spirit, but gives them a new human heart to love Truth and Righteousness and to serve Him. They too, like the Little Flock, become dead to self and the world and alive to God, practicing watchfulness and prayer, studying and spreading, the Word. Thus the Youthful Worthies also must be faithful to the Lord – even unto death, if He deems it necessary.
We read, “Ye shall have one manner of law, as well for the stranger, as for one of your own country.” (Lev. 24:22) The “stranger” here types those consecrating between the ages. They are “strangers” because they are strangers to the Little Flock, having consecrated themselves too late to be of that select company. Just as there was “one manner of law” for the Jews and for the foreigners visiting in their land, Youthful Worthies are under the same law as the Saints, meaning they make the same manner of consecration – a complete desire to do God’s will and they have been similarly blessed with a clear understanding of Present Truth.
These four elect classes, the Little Flock, Great Company, Ancient Worthies and Youthful Worthies, are the only consecrated classes of the Jewish and Gospel Ages. They are the only saved classes for elect purposes. God has not been dealing with the world of mankind during these ages, including the last special period of this Gospel Age, the Epiphany. God’s “due time” for dealing with the non-elect, the Restitutionists, is when the Highway of Holiness is opened up for them. (Isa. 35:8)
SONS AND DAUGHTERS
We understand the term “your sons” of our text to represent Fleshly Israel, a class presented in the Scriptures as separate and distinct from other classes. (Isa. 60:4, 9) They are the seed of Jacob, and as such have a special promise and call from the Lord. They are promised that they will forever inherit Canaan; their call is that in them (as a secondary earthly seed, under the Ancient Worthies and Youthful Worthies as the primary earthly seed) all the families of the earth will be blessed. (Gen. 28:13-14; Rom. 11:28-29) For this purpose God chose them in preference to all other nations to be His people. (Amos. 3:2) He favored them with special revelations, providences, and His Law Covenant to give them the opportunity as a nation to become “a kingdom of priests.” (Exod. 19:5-6) He used them to furnish a practical demonstration that none of Adam’s race can fulfill God’s Law and gain life by obedience to the Law, which is the full measure of a perfect man’s ability. (Rom. 3:9, 19-20; Gal. 3:10-12) Many tried hard but failed to keep the Law perfectly. This awakened in them the realization of the need and the desire for a Savior. (Gal. 3:21-24, 13) God also used the actions and institutions of Fleshly Israel as types illustrating future features of His Plan (Heb. 9:9-10; Heb. 10:1; Col. 2:16-17); and He used them to preserve His oracles, which He deposited in their care. (Rom. 3:1-2)
Though they were not perfect, some among them proved faithful, and thus became of the Ancient Worthies. When Christ came in His first advent, there were some individuals among them who proved to be “Israelites indeed.” However, the bulk of them rejected Him. (John 1:11-13, 47; Rom. 2:28-29) Consequently they were rejected from God’s favor as a class until the end of the Gospel Age. (Matt. 23:34-39; Rom. 11:7-11, 25) Throughout this age God has permitted them to suffer miseries as perhaps no other single nation has suffered. (Jer. 16:13, 17-18)
True to prophecy, they have been blinded to the High Calling of the Gospel Age (with individual exceptions). However, the Bible prophesies their return to God’s favor and to their land at the end of this age. (Jer. 16:14-16; Ezek. 36:24, 28-30; Amos 9:14-15; Rom. 11:25-32) The Apostle Paul says, “Blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles [full number of the Bride of Christ] be come in.” With the selection of that class complete, these prophecies are fulfilling before our very eyes. Since the year 1878, ever increasing numbers of Jews have returned to their land and Israel’s blindness and prejudice toward Christ are lifting. These events are precursors of the Millennium. (Ezek. 37:21-25)
Because they are “beloved for the fathers’ sakes” (Rom. 11:28), they who have been so greatly despised during the Gospel Age will become greatly favored during the Millennium as the chief nation of earth. Their past experiences in the Jewish Age and the Gospel Age, combined with their efforts to fulfill the Law, will serve to adapt them to the Kingdom arrangements. As they continue to be obedient to these arrangements, they will be lifted up to the perfection of human nature as Father Adam enjoyed it in the beginning. Those who prove true to the Lord during the trial of the “little season” at the end of the Millennium (Rev. 20:3, 7-9) will inherit the land that God promised Abraham and his seed after him (Gen. 13:14-17; Acts 7:5); but during the Millennium this land will belong to the Ancient Worthies.
However, those Israelites who either during the Jewish Age or the Gospel Age apostatized, by giving up faith in the Abrahamic promises and the Law Covenant, will not receive the special Millennial favor just described. They will be treated as Gentiles during the Millennium, for their apostasy made them practical, if not fleshly, Gentiles. Likewise, we believe that persevering but unconsecrated Gentile believers of the Gospel Age will be included among “your sons.” These are those who were faithful in tentative justification but not faithful enough to make and carry out consecration vows while the ascendency of sin is still in the world.
The sixth and last of the saved classes mentioned in Joel 2:28-29 are those referred to as “your daughters.” (Isa. 60:4; Ezek. 16:61) Israel’s superiority to the Gentiles during the Millennium is from the standpoint of the superiority of sons to daughters in middle-eastern culture. This harmonizes with the thought that the daughters represent the Gentiles, meaning nations that are not in covenant relation with God. Hence all who are not of Natural or Spiritual Israel (“both houses” – Isa. 8:14) are from the Divine standpoint Gentiles. Accordingly, the human race from the Fall until the Covenant was made with Abraham (Gen. 12:1-3) was entirely Gentile. Because they did not desire to glorify God, He gave them over to their own ways, which as both the Bible and history attest, have been largely evil. (Rom. 1:21-32)
In permitting the Gentiles to take their own course in experiencing evil, God designed that the Gentile world, who refused to retain Him in their knowledge, might learn the lesson that they would not learn by precept – that sin is bad – bad in its nature and bad in its effects. That they might better learn this lesson, He simply let them follow their own selfish hearts and permitted Satan and his fallen angels to secure dominion over them, knowing that these would give them such experiences as would make all the more impressive the detestableness of sin and the desirability of avoiding and of being free from it. (Eph. 2:2; Eph. 6:12; 2 Cor. 4:4; Heb. 2:14)
This lesson has not yet been taken to heart by the Gentiles. During the Millennium the opposite experience with righteousness will come to mankind through the blessings of the Reign of Christ. Then the misery suffered under the experience with evil contrasted with the blessings enjoyed under the experience with good will effectually teach them to hate and avoid sin, and to love and practice righteousness.
SIX CLASSES TYPED BY NOAH’S ARK
We find the six saved classes typed in Noah’s Ark. Saint Peter describes the Ark salvation as, “The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us.” (1 Pet. 3:20-21) The Ark typified Christ and His power to replenish and reorganize society. (See Studies in the Scriptures, Volume I, page 318) In other words, the Ark portrays the embodiment of God’s Plan.
There were four human pairs who went into the Ark, as well as one pair of every clean and unclean kind of animal, representing all saved classes of mankind. The four elect classes are represented in Noah and his three sons and their wives – the Christ Company, the Ancient Worthies, the Great Company and the Youthful Worthies. Noah undoubtedly types our Lord, the “heir of the righteousness which is by faith” (Heb. 11:7) and Noah’s wife types the Little Flock, His Bride. Noah’s sons represent the leaders of their respective classes, and their wives the rest of these classes. The animals in the Ark fittingly represent the non-elect who will ultimately be saved. The clean animals represent the Jews (who were typically clean) as well as the tentatively justified. The unclean animals represent the Gentiles, those of the present unclean world. Those who perished in the flood represent the Second Death class, as well as the systems of Satan’s empire.
The fact that only six saved classes are identified in the Scriptures may strike some as being incomplete, since many things in the Divine arrangement come in sevens, and six is the number of evil or imperfection. But as we consider the matter further, we realize that while there are only six saved classes from the human family, there is another, a seventh saved class mentioned in the Scriptures, viz., the repentant fallen angels. God will also offer the opportunity of life eternal to them. At Christ’s appearing, i.e. His Epiphany, the unrepentant angels will be imprisoned with Satan until the end of the “little season” when they, along with Satan, will be executed. (2 Pet. 2:4; Rev. 20:3, 9) The repentant Angels will be placed under Christ and the Church for their Millennial opportunities of overcoming everything sinful in them and of developing perfect love, fitting them for the heavenly society and fellowship with God.
THE GRAND OUTCOME
According to the Scriptures the climax of evil is reached in the Time of Trouble, consisting of world-wide wars, revolution and anarchy. (1 Kings 19:11-12) It is quite evident that we have entered this Great Tribulation. It will entirely sweep away Satan’s Empire and pave the way for the establishment of God’s Kingdom. This will first be set into operation by The Christ working through the Ancient Worthies in Israel, where it will speedily and greatly benefit the Israelites. Then the news of its establishment will spread among the Gentiles, who at that time will be utterly exhausted, broken and humbled by the horrors of the Time of Trouble. It will be to them like a rope thrown to a drowning man – the Gentile world will grasp for it as their only hope of deliverance from their unspeakable miseries. (Hag. 2:6-7; Rom. 8:19-22; Isa. 2:2-4) Thanks be to God, it will be the effectual cure of the curse, and will teach the world righteousness! (Rev. 22:3; Isa. 26:9) They will indeed exalt God in the “congregation of the people” (the Little Flock) and praise Him in the “assembly of the elders” (the Ancient Worthies). (Psa. 107:32) The glorious work of that Kingdom in destroying every element of the curse and introducing Restitution to human perfection will more than satisfy their hearts. (Rev. 21:3-5; Rev. 22:1-3; Acts 3:19-24)
Thus, both Jew and Gentile will be brought together under the one God of Israel by the one Mediator between God and men, Jesus Christ. (Deut. 6:4; Mark 12:29; 1 Tim. 2:5) The six saved classes cover all the human classes saved through the Ransom. There is no hint of a seventh human class in the Bible. The entire non-elect portion of the human family, whether living or dead at the time of the establishment of the Kingdom, will become the subjects of the Kingdom. The result of the Kingdom reign will be the utter eradication of all the effects of the curse. (Psa. 98:1-4; Psa. 22:27-29; Isa. 25:6-8) “For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.” (1 Cor. 15:25-26)
QUESTIONS OF GENERAL INTEREST
Question: The LHMM teach that Nethinim is the type of the Consecrated Epiphany Campers. Does this type teach that the Consecrated Epiphany Campers supplant the Jews in the Kingdom?
Answer: All types given by the LHMM are for the purpose of replacing the Jews in the Kingdom. They do not teach “to the Jew first,” as do the Apostle Paul and the two Messengers. All types must be supported in plain terms in the Scriptures: “A type must not be used to teach a doctrine, but merely to illustrate one that is already taught in plain terms.” (Bible Students Manual, Berean Topical Index, page 25)
The Scriptures teach that in Jacob’s last trouble the Jews as a nation will accept Jesus as their Messiah. (Zech. 12:10) During that time, the Lord will fight for them as in the “day of battle” (Zech. 14:1-3) and afterward the Kingdom will be inaugurated. Then the Lord’s message to the Jews will be: “Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee. For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the Lord shall arise upon thee, and his glory shall be seen upon thee. And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising.” (Isa. 60:1-3)
According to the teaching of the LHMM, the Consecrated Epiphany Campers would be the first to shine. However, we have no Scripture in plain terms that teach this non-existent class will supplant the Jews. The LHMM is “contending for the teaching of a Great Company,” and not for the Truth that was once given unto the saints. We have no Scripture that exhorts us to “contend” for the teaching of a crown-loser, especially if the crown-loser teaches anything that conflicts with the teaching of the saints. “Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.” (Jude 3) We are on safe ground when we contend for the faith once delivered unto the saints.
We can rely on types only as corroboration of what is taught in “plain terms” in the Scriptures. When Brother Russell understood the Tabernacle types and antitypes, he was enabled to write the six volumes of the Studies in the Scriptures. So types are valuable when used in harmony with God’s Word. We well realize that “The path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.” (Prov. 4:18) But any so-called “new light” that sets aside what we have learned and been assured of is really “new error.” We do not want to be “Ever learning, and never able come to the knowledge of the truth.” (2 Tim. 3:7, 14) The exhortation is: “Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” (2 Tim. 2:15)
The LHMM teach that the Epiphany ended in 1954, and is now overlapping into the Basiliea. Their “overlapping,” is now longer than their Epiphany proper. We are clearly taught that the Epiphany and the Time of Trouble are the same length – when one ends so will the other. Did the Time of Trouble end in 1954? It seems they should now call their non-existent class “Consecrated Basiliea Campers” at this time.
We continue to teach that the opportunity for Youthful Worthies will be until Restitution sets in as was taught by both Messengers. In Tabernacle types, a place represents a condition in antitype. Anyone consecrating now may be in the condition of the court – that is, if their consecration is acceptable to the Lord. Restitutionists will consecrate to The Christ in the Basiliea camp. Jesus is not accepting consecration of the Restitutionists in the Epiphany Camp.
Question: Are Consecrated Epiphany Campers represented in any way in Noah’s Ark?
Answer: No! And it would be essential for them to be shown in the Ark in some clear manner if they are a genuine class, because the Ark typifies God’s complete Plan of Salvation and the power of Christ to replenish and reorganize society. Noah’s Ark also does not portray the Jehovah’s Witnesses’ Jonadabs, or any of the earthly “Organization” they claim will survive Armageddon.
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