“O come, let us sing unto the Lord: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation. Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms.” (Psa. 95:1,2)
The angelic sons of God “shouted for joy” (Job 38:7) in the dawn of earth’s creative week, and after witnessing step after step in the development, finally saw man, its king, made in the Divine image. Then came the fall by disobedience into sin and death, and the frightful experiences of fallen angels who kept not their primary estate, and man’s selfish and bloody history under the reign of sin and death. Then successively follow the redemption, the selection of the Anointed One (Head and Body) through sacrifice, and the establishment of the Messianic Kingdom with its wonderful restitution of all things spoken by God through the mouth of all His holy prophets since the world began. No wonder indeed that there should be a Jubilation in heaven and in earth when all of Jehovah’s intelligent creatures shall thus behold the length, heights and breadths and depths, not only of God’s Love, but also of His Justice and Wisdom and Power.
Exodus 15:21 – Realizing their deliverance from bondage, and the Divine Power exercised on their behalf in the overthrow of the Egyptian army, the Israelites were joyful. Moses, their great leader, composed a poem of much force and beauty and of recognized high standard. The men chanted it after Moses; and the women, under the leadership of Miriam, the sister of Moses and Aaron, took timbrels, or tambourines, and joined in a refrain, or chorus, their bodies swaying and their feet moving rhythmically in what is described as a dance:
“Sing ye to the Lord [Jehovah];
For he hath triumphed gloriously.”
Singing songs of praise constitutes one of the most interesting and most profitable methods of worship. But we may be sure that they are acceptable to God only as they come from the heart and truly represent its sentiments. We fear, alas, that many hymns, like many prayers, never go higher than the heads of the offerers; indeed, we have sometimes feared that careless, irreverent singing might really be resented by the Lord as profanity – taking the Holy Name in vain. If so, the results would be of course the very reverse of a blessing, and that in proportion as the singer comprehended the impiety of his course. “The Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.” (Ex. 20:7)
We do not mean by this that any unjust or cruel torments, future or present, would be the penalty, but we do believe that such a course reacts upon the irreverent heart to make it colder, more indifferent, and less susceptible to the influence of the Divine message of grace. AH! if all Christians sang with the spirit and with the understanding also, and if none others sang hymns, the earthly sounds might be more discordant than they are; but their heavenly echoes and fragrance would be the more acceptable to God.
“The Lord is my rock and my fortress, and my deliverer.” (2 Sam. 22:2) This entire chapter is one of David’s songs of praise and gratitude to God for His loving providences which had been so manifest toward him ever since his anointing by Samuel the prophet, and doubtless before that as well. It calls to mind another expression of one of his Psalms, “Rejoice in the Lord, 0 ye righteous; for praise is comely for the upright.” (Psa. 33:1) Indeed, the writings of David, and all the prophets and apostles as well, abound in fervent expressions of praise and thanksgiving to God. They not only praise the Lord themselves, lovingly and gratefully recounting all His mercies, but, with impassioned eloquence and Holy enthusiasm, they call upon all the sons of men, and every thing that hath breath, and even inanimate natures, to laud and magnify His Holy Name. The worshippers are also bidden to bring with them to the concert of praise every musical instrument of human device; and grateful reverence exclaims, “Blessed is his glorious name forever, and let the whole earth be filled with his glory, Amen and Amen!” (Psa. 33:2,3; 50:1‑6; 72:19)
As we thus consider that, by the voice of inspiration, the whole human race is called to praise and worship and thanksgiving, we are led to consider further the relationship which the spirit of praise has to the Christian or godly character. David says, it is “comely for the upright.” But why so? It is because loving gratitude is one of the Divinely implanted instincts of a soul bearing the image of God, and one which should therefore be cultivated. It is this element of the intelligent creature that is designed to be responsive to the Divine goodness and benevolence; and it is this element of character in man which makes fellowship and communion with God possible. If the goodness of God could awaken in us no sense of grateful appreciation; if we were wholly dead to such sentiments, there could be no pleasure on God’s part in manifesting His goodness to us, and there would be nothing in us to call out His love; and so also nothing, of all His goodness and grace, would awaken love in us. But since for the Divine pleasure we are and were created (Rev. 4:11), God endowed His intelligent creature with this element of character which, being responsive to His own goodness, institutes a lively and delightful fellowship with Himself, which is the chief end of human existence, both on the side of the creature and of the Creator. (Psa. 16:11; Prov. 11:20; 15:8)
It is plain, therefore, that in the cultivation of the spirit of praise, thanksgiving and loving appreciation of all the manifest goodness of God, is the Christian’s secret of a happy life. And in order to the cultivation of such a spirit it is necessary that we continually call to mind His acts of mercy and of grace; that in our prayers we frequently tell Him how all His goodness is remembered, how every fresh evidence of His love and care causes faith to take deeper root and makes the sense of His presence and favor more fully realized; and how through such experiences our love and joy are made to abound more and more. We love Him because He first loved us; and every time we see some new mark of His love, if we have truly appreciative hearts, our love is called out more and more, and we are made to rejoice in God, in whose presence is fullness of joy. It is to this end that our Lord encourages our frequent coming to God in prayer with large requests for His favor, saying, “Ask, and ye shall receive, that your ,joy may be full.” (John 16:24)
We observe that in Israel the spirit of praise was cultivated by calling to mind and recounting what the Lord had done for them. “If I do not remember thee,” says David, “let my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth.” (Psa. 137:6. See also Ex. 15:1; Deut. 17:17,18; 8:2; 15:15; 32:7)
So must the Christian continually call to mind the works of the Lord, especially his own individual experience of the Lord’s leading and care and deliverance from dangers and snares and the wiles of the adversary. If we keep these things in mind and meditate upon them, our appreciation of God and His goodness grows, and the spirit of love and praise takes possession of the heart and thus we are made to rejoice in the Lord always, and in everything to give thanks. So also the soul is made to hunger and thirst after God and to realize that God alone is its satisfying portion, and to desire more and more of His fullness. Thus, as the Psalmist suggests, our prayer will be, “As the hart panteth after the water‑brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, 0 God.” (Psa. 42:1)
DEDICATION OF THE TEMPLE
The construction of the Temple being finished the chiefs of Israel gathered with King Solomon at Jerusalem for its dedication, at the time we call October, corresponding to the Jewish New Year feast, held in connection with the great Day of Atonement. The Atonement Day was probably past, the sacrifices of atonement having been made in the Tabernacle and the blessing of the Lord, as usual, dispensed upon the people for the new year. While they were thus legally cleansed, reconciled to God typically, it was the most appropriate time for the dedication of the Temple, which represented the spiritual hopes and aims of the nation.
The Ark, representing typically the Divine covenant with Abraham, the fulfillment of which centered in the Christ, must be transferred from the Tabernacle to the Temple, that thus the latter might supersede the former, as the meeting place between God and His covenant people. The thousands of sacrifices offered during the procession of the King and priest and the celebrities of the nation, besides evidencing their devotion to God and their willingness to sacrifice, had a typical significance as representing the consecration even unto death of the whole company thus engaged in transferring the emblem of their faith and hope. In some respects, therefore, the King and the chiefs of the nation represented typically our Lord Jesus and the overcomers and the chief priest and under priests represents the same from another standpoint. The procession was the meeting place between the sacrificing emblems of the present age and the typical representation of the Kingdom glories and honors of the next age. The Lord’s people of the Gospel Age have been following this type. The Great King, antitypical Solomon, has about finished the Temple construction and has sent forth the invitation to the heads, the chiefs of spiritual Israel, to attend and share in the great dedication. Those chiefs are not the great of this world, but the Lord’s very elect. From the four quarters of the spiritual heavens they have been gathering, the procession has already commenced; but as the Temple was not complete until the Ark, the most important part was placed in position, so the glorious Temple will not really be finished until every member of the Body of Christ has been changed from the Tabernacle condition to the Temple or permanent condition in the First Resurrection.
While the priests proceeded with their work of placing the Ark, the Levites, “arrayed in white linen, having cymbals and psalteries and harps, stood at the east of the [brazen] altar, and with them an hundred and twenty priests sounding with trumpets. It came to pass that the trumpeters and singers were as one, to make one sound to be heard in praising and thanking the Lord; and when they lifted up their voices with the trumpets and cymbals and instruments of music, and praised the Lord, saying, For he is good; for his mercy endureth forever, that then the house [Temple] was filled with the cloud” (2 Chron. 5:12,13) – the peculiar pillar of cloud which symbolized the Lord’s presence through the wilderness journey, and subsequently in connection with the Tabernacle, and now in the Temple, for the first time rested upon it. This which outwardly had the appearance of a cloud in the sanctuary on the Mercy Seat, represented an extreme brightness – so great that the priests could no longer remain in the Holy.
But meantime the King explained to the people the significance of the Temple, that is was the house of God built under Divine direction, given to himself and to his father David. Then standing near the altar of the court, spreading forth his hands toward heaven, he prayed a most beautiful prayer, and one which we recognize as prophetically directed and as teaching us the purpose and object of the great antitypical Temple constructed by antitypical Solomon. The literal Temple was to be the place toward which all the Israelites should look as God’s dwelling place, the center of His power, authority, forgiveness and blessing and help in every time of need. So in due time, when the spiritual Temple shall have been constructed and dedicated and filled with Divine Power, it will be the center toward which all who would approach God shall look for help and assistance and blessing and forgiveness, toward which they shall make their prayers, and in which they shall realize the manifestation of Divine Power and blessing on their behalf.
After Solomon’s dedicatory prayer was finished, the Lord openly manifested His favor toward the King and all the people by accepting their sacrifices with fire from heaven, as we read: “When Solomon had made an end of praying the fire came down from heaven and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifices; and the glory of Jehovah filled the house [Temple]... And when all the children of Israel saw how the fire came down and the glory of the Lord was upon the house, they bowed themselves with their faces to the ground upon the pavement and worshipped and praised the Lord, saying For he is good, for his mercy endureth forever” probably joining with the Levites in singing Psalm 136.
There were great demonstrations of joy in connection with this dedication of the Temple. It meant much to the Holy people as they realized that the great Creator had deigned to approve the erection of a dwelling house with them. As the Ark came forward the Levites sang and chanted, probably some of David’s Psalms, which apparently by inspiration were written for the occasion. (Psa. 47; 98; 99; 107; 118; 130) The theme of the occasion seems to have been “For his mercy endureth forever.” Ah! how that oft repeated expression of the Psalmist will be understood, appreciated by mankind shortly. When the priests with the Ark shall have entered in, and when the Levites of the future, the Ancient Worthies and others, shall chant the praises of Jehovah throughout all the earth, making known to the people “That his mercy endureth forever” and that during the Millennial Age, in and through the Anointed, The Christ, they will have the privilege of returning to God and to all that was lost, how joyful indeed will be the occasion! How world wide the blessing! Then every knee shall bow and every tongue confess to the glory of the Father!
It is noteworthy that the Levities and the people did not sing of Divine wrath never ending, but of Divine mercy forever. This, however, according to the strict significance of the Hebrew word, does not mean “without an end,” but “to an end” – that is to say, that Divine mercy shall be exercised to the completeness, to its fulfillment, until every creature shall have been brought to a knowledge of the Lord and His goodness and to an opportunity of knowing Him and of benefiting by the great promise made to Abraham and symbolized in the Ark of the Covenant, through which all the families of the earth shall be blessed.
Similarly in the last book of the Bible we read of the song of Moses and the Lamb, sung by the antitypical priests saying, “Great and marvelous are thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy ways thou King of saints. Who shall not reverence thee, O Lord, and glorify thy name? For thou only art holy; for all peoples shall come and worship before thee, because thy judgments [righteous dealings] are made manifest.” (Rev. 15:3,4) This is the song which none but the true people of God can truly appreciate and sing at the present time, but by and by – when the glory of the Lord shall have filled the Temple – the peoples, the multitudes, shall learn that song, shall learn of the Divine mercy, and as a prophecy it shall be fulfilled and all peoples shall bow to the Lord to confess His goodness and His love and to enjoy at the hands of the antitypical Solomon (the Christ), as prophet, priest and king of the new dispensation, the opportunity of full reconciliation to God and full return to the perfect conditions of mind and of body, and to life everlasting, lost by Adam’s disobedience, and brought back by the Great Redeemer for as many as will receive it upon God’s terms.
Our Lord in symbol pointed out to us the fact that the message of His grace in the closing days of this Gospel Age would be so different from the commonly accepted message, misnamed the Gospel, that it would properly be termed a new song, although it would be the old song of Moses – the message of blessing typified by the writings of Moses and by all the ceremonies of the Law, and the message of the Lamb, the good tidings announced in connection with our Lord’s birth, and throughout His own ministry, when all the people “bare him witness, and wondered at the gracious words that proceeded out of his mouth” (not the threats of eternal torment to nine‑tenths of the human family); and the testimony of all the apostles respecting the Lamb of God and the great work to be accomplished by Him in taking “away the sin of the world.” It is merely this same song that is now being sung by those whom God has blessed with knowledge of present truth - it is the “joyful sound” which only the people thus blessed know or can sing.
THE JOYFUL SOUND
“Blessed are the people that know the joyful sound; they shall walk, O Lord, in the light of thy countenance.” (Psa. 89:15)
Salvation is the joyful sound, as the poet has well expressed it, saying,
“Salvation, O the joyful sound,
What tidings for our race!
Deliverance for the world is found
Through God’s abounding grace.”
This joyful salvation sound is the Gospel, as declared by the angelic messengers, “Good tidings of great joy, which shall be unto all people.”
A matter, little in itself, and easily overlooked in our translation of the Bible, is the fact that the very word (turnah) used in our text, rendered “a joyful sound,” is the same Hebrew word that is used in Lev. 25:9, where the sounding of the Jubilee trumpet is commanded. How strikingly the Lord has arranged His Word, to make it a basis for faith and joy to His people. How clear it is to those who “know the joyful sound”; and yet how obscure to all others! Well does our text say, “Blessed are the people who know the joyful sound.” The blessing upon them is certainly not because of their own merit, for we are all conscious of the fact that in our flesh dwelleth no perfection, and that none of us could be commended to God by our own righteousness – all of these blessed people who know the joyful sound have reason, therefore, to give thanks unto Him who loved them, and who bought them with His own precious blood, in whose merit alone they have standing with the Heavenly Father.
Soon shall countless hearts and voices sing the song of jubilee; Blessed song! the song of Moses, Earth’s new song of liberty. Hail Messiah! great Deliverer! Hail Messiah! Praise to thee.
AN EPIC MOMENT
There have been very few moments in history where certain generations were invited by God to cooperate with Him in bringing about epic events.
Noah’s neighbors had their chance and blew it. The animals were smart enough to march into the ark while all but eight people stayed outside. If only that generation could have seen how foolish they would be viewed by those who followed.
Moses and the children of Israel didn’t know they were making biblical history. Moses tried to get God to choose another leader – and Israel mumbled and grumbled all the way to Canaan.
Another chosen generation witnessed the birth, death and resurrection of Jesus. Only a few caught the significance of the moment, while the rest of the world moved on its “Duhhh, what’s up, Doc?” way.
Now another event has occurred to break the silence of relatively ordinary centuries where nations and people merely appear and disappear. The event is the rebirth and survival of Israel. With the Jew scattered world‑wide during 1900 years, even many biblical purists decided it was safer and saner to symbolize rather than take literally God’s promise to resurrect Israel’s dead bones (Ezekiel chapters 36,37), bring rebirth to Zion (Psalm 102:13,16), make Jerusalem the very heart and soul of Israel (Psalm 147:2,3; Luke 21:24), and preserve the nation from all attempts to destroy it (Amos 9:14,15; Jeremiah 31:35‑37).
Who wouldn’t have wished to be that fortunate generation to be invited by God to take part in a miracle of such epic magnitude? Generations spanning some 2,000 years could only wonder. Pray. Hope.
In 1948 that all changed. Enter another momentous moment of scriptural significance. Today’s Christian Church can find “I‑S‑R‑A‑E‑L” on a world map. Incredible! We can walk the streets of Jerusalem or sail the Galilee and hear Hebrew spoken. Unbelievable!
However, we can also see swastikas and other symbols of hate directed at Jews worldwide at an accelerating pace. And we can see Israel with no national friends except the fair‑weather variety. The UN has been a forum for Israel‑bashing. The U.S. will not prove to be Israel’s “one true friend” in future days no matter how hard Jewish and Christian leaders wish otherwise. But just as the world has learned that Jews are here to stay – in spite of every vile secular and religious attempt over the centuries to obliterate them (Jeremiah 30:11,16,17), so Israel will now be God’s centerpiece as history moves toward completion.
And now the big question. How will today’s church play out in this moment of history? We can’t escape being part of the drama. That comes with being alive at such a time as this (Esther 4:14). But you as an individual – and your church as a corporate body – are faced with choices. You can embrace “replacement theology” and write off God’s preservation of the Jewish people and Israel as “mere coincidence.” But you will answer to God for such foolishness.
Or you can have your belief system intact – believing all of God’s promises toward Israel – and yet stand on the sidelines as a mere spectator when you should be a key player.
Or you can discover God’s heart of unconditional, undying love for His ancient people (Isaiah 49:14‑16) and stand with them in every storm.
The Bible is not ambiguous concerning God’s plan for Israel. The world puts no stock in Scripture, so you can expect its opposition. Many Jews and Christians have just enough of a “religious vaccination” to keep from ever being infected with truth as God sees it – so they may view you as a well‑meaning simpleton best kept at arm’s length unless they can use you.
But when this epic historical moment slips into eternity – with you and me with it – let’s be found as those who were simple enough to believe God, wise enough to obey Him, and courageous enough to have stood in Christ’s power and love at Israel’s side when the world insisted that she stand alone.
WHEN ISRAEL CHOOSES WRONG
We who claim to care are about to be tested. Israelis, famished for peace, appear bent on trusting the Gentiles once again for their security and safety – all of our howls of protest notwithstanding.
The people of Israel are bone tired. After fifty years of existence, they still cannot travel anywhere in the Mideast (Egypt is a cold and risky exception) and so exist on a tiny splinter of land 280 miles by 50 miles. Histories are rewritten, ignoring Jewish claims to the land and even turning Palestinian Arabs into “Canaanites,” thus preceding the Israelites and having a more valid claim on today’s turf. Only a few in the media and pulpit expose this historical sleight of hand as a ludicrous joke.
Fearing attacks from across her borders and the assassin’s knife within Israel, Jews feel pushed to the wall. They are faced with two choices:
- Take a crash course in their 4,000 year history and admit that their birth, existence, and preservation are due to God alone – and that He alone will see them through to their ultimate destiny of being a blessing and light to the nations. And admit that every time they rejected a walk of faith and obedience to the unseen God and chose instead to both embrace and act as the goyim (the nations), they earned chastisement and shame.
- Refuse to risk being labeled an “impediment to peace” by a gentile world calling for a “new world order” and demanding that Israelis place their futures in the soiled hands of mere men rather than those of Israel’s Creator who says to His ancient people, “I have engraven thee upon the palms of my hands...” (Isaiah 49:16).
Using the past as a guide and the Scriptures as a road map, I ache at but accept the fact that Israelis will opt for the false promises of peace offered by the U.S., Europe and the Arabs by giving up important parts of their God‑given land. The peace dividend promised Israel will prove as elusive as ever. Israelis will again be betrayed by Gentiles and a Jewish fifth column living outside of Israel – Jews who will only learn the hard way that “there’s no place like home.”
But if Israelis make a thousand wrong choices, where will you and I choose to be? Once again, the Scriptures are clear. We must be at their side – just like we would a family member who makes a wrong choice – appealing to, comforting, warning, praying for and defending the people of Israel. It’s called unconditional love.
God will one day be recognized as the hope of Israel. He insists upon it. Scripture proves that Jews (like us Gentiles) only learn the hard way. But “He that keepeth Israel” neither slumbers nor sleeps (Psalm 121) and says of His people “...in their affliction they will seek me early.” (Hosea 5:15) Israel will pay the price for wrong choices: pain. But those who cause her pain pay the greater price – down the drain – and into the timeworn sewers filled with nations that fought God by cursing the Jews.
(Frank Eiklor, Editor, Front Lines Report, Volume 20, July 1998)
QUESTIONS OF GENERAL INTEREST
QUESTION – Does the “night cometh, when no man can work” (John 9:4) apply to the Epiphany?
ANSWER ‑The Berean Comments on John 9:4 says the “night” is the Time of Trouble; and the Time of Trouble and the Epiphany are one and the same, as That Servant taught. The phrase “when no man can work” is used by those who believe that they are still doing the work of reaping the Saints. But we believe that the “reaping” of the Saints is finished. Surely all Truth people can see that we are in the Time of Trouble. Even quite a few of the world tell us that we are in the Time of Trouble as given in Daniel 12:1 and Matt. 24:21. We know that a work is being done now, but it is not the “reaping” of the Saints.
Brother Russell says in Volume 3, page 211, bottom: “Observe that, when this night cometh, when the reapers must cease their labors; it will prove that this final work of the Gospel Age is accomplished; that the elect number of the Bride of Christ have all been ‘sealed.”’
Quite a few, with good reason, believe there is a work still to be done. Since the door to the high calling closed, which no man can open, there is still a work going on: the world is summoned to repentance and the justified invited to consecrate. Brother Russell taught that this class of consecrators, who came in too late for the High Calling, if faithful, would be rewarded in honor and service with the Ancient Worthies, who were too early for the High Calling (Heb. 11:39,40). In contrast we call them Youthful Worthies. That Servant gave quite a bit on this class (Reprint 5761, September 1, 1915).
The message to “repent and believe” is for all who get life on any plane, and it is a good idea for any of us to begin in this life, as soon as we have knowledge of sin and of right and wrong, to live a life accordingly. When the individuals of the world learn righteousness (Isa. 26:9), it will be a glorious world: “They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters that cover the sea.” (Isa. 11:9)
QUESTION ‑ The Apostle Paul says in Acts 20:27: “For I have not shunned to declare the whole counsel of God.” What does he mean by counsel?
ANSWER – The Diaglott rendering of this text is: “For I have not kept back from announcing all the will of God to you.” All Bible Students know that the Apostle Paul was given more of the “Plan of the Ages” (Eph. 3:11, Dia.) than the other Apostles because of the vision he had on his way to Damascus (Acts 9:3‑5). He evidently had more abundant revelations than any other apostle. Though he was not permitted to tell all that he saw in his vision (2 Cor. 12:4), nor particularize all he knew of the mysteries of God relating to the “ages to come,” yet what he saw gave a force, shading and depth of meaning to his words which, in the light of subsequent facts, prophetic fulfillments and the Spirit’s guidance, we are able to appreciate more fully than could the early disciples. We believe that the Apostle Paul knew that a long period of time would elapse before the Kingdom would be inaugurated and this would have been disheartening to the brethren of his day. Also some of his statements were for the end of the age and not for that time.
For instance, the Apostle Paul, who wrote more than one‑half of the New Testament, says in 2 Tim. 2:20: “In a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver but also of wood and of earth; and some to honour and some to dishonour.” Most Bible Students know that gold and silver are the Little Flock and Great Company, and that wood and earth are the Ancient and Youthful Worthies.
That Servant followed the Apostle’s example in giving the “whole counsel.” He taught that the Youthful Worthies was an unbegotten class consecrating after the closing of the “door.” He gives this in Reprint 5761, September 1, 1915, under the heading THOSE CONSECRATING BETWEEN THE AGES. He did not use the term Youthful Worthies, but he did speak of those who are meant by that term, who would be associated in honor and service with the Ancient Worthies and have a “better resurrection.”
LETTERS OF GENERAL INTEREST
You are right: I’ve been so tardy in thanking you for your December 31, 1997 letter. It’s been such a tense few months, that one was happy to be able to attend to the most urgent daily routine – not always successfully. And now we have your July 21 letter together with the stunningly well done Israel’s 50th Anniversary, No. 498! What a beauty! What a shot in the arm! Too, it’s the first time I've see the Mark Twain quote – never hit on that before!
We have hit on hard times. Dina has taken ill. No diagnosis yet. Tests and more tests, examinations, two one‑day hospital stays, etc. You, of course, know only too well what all this means and entails – for the family as well. I am very concerned and eagerly await a concrete diagnosis.
Thank you most warmly for your continued loyalty. Aren’t we fortunate to find always succor and sustenance in Scriptures!!
Be well and Shalom! Michael Pragai (ISRAEL)
Dear Emily: Greetings!
As always it is good hearing from you and your never ending commitment to the Jewish people and Israel has been and is an inspiration to us all. Sadly our world is becoming increasingly anti‑Semitic by the day and of course the new anti‑Semitism is anti‑Zionism. Nations are ganging up against Israel and as you can well appreciate, being American. The recent bombings in Africa of your Embassies is really an attack against Israel as the Islamic militants are in reality seeking to break America’s support of Israel.
Our own country is now experiencing this evil since, as you may have heard, a Planet Hollywood restaurant was bombed at the Cape Town water front. These are evil days and the devil is most certainly seeking to destroy Israel, the only real hope for the globe. Nevertheless, the word of God assures us of ultimate victory, and we must not become discouraged or complacent. Now is the time for us to seize the opportunity since events on the ground and the desperation of the enemy affirm the soon coming of our Lord to Jerusalem and therefore to His glorious Kingdom. These evil events are thus merely the “birth pangs” as Jesus Himself taught us and we must look up because as He put it, “our redemption draws nigh.”
Your friend, Malcolm (AFRICA)
Dear Emily: Shalom!
I ran across this copy of a most important letter received from the late Daniel Zion, former Chief Rabbi of Bulgaria. You remember that some years ago you published my account of the dramatic events in his life. Well, on returning from Israel we sent him a 5th Volume in French. We received his response! Of course, we did reply, telling him about Pastor Russell as the author. What a privilege to lead this saintly Jew to an understanding of the One God, One Son – no Trinity.
Love to all, Elva (CALIFORNIA)