My dear Brethren: Grace and peace through our Beloved Master!
Part Two of this subject is almost wholly devoted to a biography of Moses, which we hope gave considerable enlightenment to our readers; but we now return to a consideration of the Exodus account, beginning with Chapter 5, and continuing through to Exodus 12, where the tenth and final plague was visited upon the Egyptians. This brought Pharaoh and his leading henchmen to a ready mind to allow the Israelites to leave Egypt with all their possessions, plus a large quantity of gold and silver from the Egyptians themselves.
Very shortly after the Lord returned in 1874, His faithful people began to proclaim publicly by word and the printed page the philosophy of the ransom, the object, manner and time of our Lord’s return, the elect superior standing of the Church which is His body, restitution and future probation for the world in general and the overthrow of Satan’s empire in all its parts. These teachings were based on a clear understanding of God’s perfect attributes of Love, Wisdom, Justice and Power. The opposing errors on these subjects were refuted in a clear, logical and forceful manner, which only the truth could do.
Among the leading topics in that great battle were the doctrines of eternal torment as the wages of sin, the consciousness of the dead, an unclear definition of the judgment day, etc. The truth on these subjects was vigorously disputed by most of the clergy, the politicians and aristocrats. Especially was this true as respects the doctrine of eternal torment as the wages of sin, despite the plain statement in Romans 6:23, “The wages of sin is death.” It was a dangerous teaching, they said, and would greatly minimize their efforts to win the world for Jesus.
Of course, Satan was the invisible source of their efforts, just as Jesus was the invisible source of the truths that were proclaimed. In all of this the teachers of error indirectly denied God’s perfect love, wisdom, justice and power by inferring these were insufficient to liberate the people. None of this was new to Satan because he had been a careful listener to Jesus, the Apostles and the general Church at the First Advent.
So well had he befogged the general truths, that the doctrine of Restitution was completely lost in the interim (Acts 3:19-23), with many of the other tenets of Christian faith so sullied with error that no one could offer a successful defense of them. This is all well typified by Pharaoh and the leading Egyptians taking for granted the servitude of the Israelites. They had been in the land for a long time, so why should they create any uproar about it? Moses and Aaron were very polite and considerate in their first request – just as the Lord’s people after 1874 were also very gentle in their proclamations of the unfolding truth. The “sword” of Ex. 5:3 types the controversial truths that were hurled against the deeply–entrenched errors of that time; and, when we consider the enormity of the task, we can easily understand why Moses shrank from attempting to free the Jews from the bondage in which they were at that time.
Of course, the entrance of the Truth into the heart and mind of any one tends to liberate that person from the evils of sin, error, selfishness and death. “My son, attend to my words; incline shine ear unto my sayings. For they are life unto those that find them, and health to all their flesh.” (Prov. 4:20, 22) Thus Satan has always been opposed to liberty; and, when we see any system resorting to oppression to keep their devotees enslaved, we may immediately conclude that that system is of Satanic domination. This is as true today as it ever was!
Especially would we stress this in this Epiphany Day. Up to 1916 there was great enthusiasm among Truth people to “stand fast in that liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.” (Gal. 5:1) “Where the spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.” (2 Cor. 3:17) And, when we see any of the groups that have emanated from the Parousia Truth movement attempting to enslave their followers, we may be certain they are not being actuated by the Lord’s spirit. Quite a few of such people at this time are subdued to a blind gullibility which does not permit them to question anything their leaders tell them.
Concurrently with the proclamation of the Biblical Truth after 1874 there arose a tidal wave of reformers varied and sundry. In the political world there appeared such men as Gladstone, Mussolini, Lenin, Debs, Bryan, et al, and in the religious world Moody, Billy Sunday, Smith. (Almost sixty years ago Billy Sunday came to Dayton, Ohio – our home at that time – so we wrote him a rather thorough analysis of what the Bible says about Hell, and asked him to please answer it from the platform in one of his religious meetings. Not hearing from him, we wrote him again that we would publish in the Dayton newspaper what we had written him. The next day he said he had received a critical paper about Hell from a Daytonian; and the only answer he gave was, “He’s a big idiot!”) Similar characters in the capitalistic world were Ida Tarbell, Thomas Lawson, et al.
It is probably a fair appraisal that most of the above-mentioned were reasonably sincere in what they tried to do; but their efforts backfired, causing some of the reformers much anguish. Bryan was known as the silver–tongued orator, and some of our friends told us the country had never heard a better one. He attempted to monetize silver so as to make it in balance with gold. In that fight it was the gold men of the East versus the silver men of the West, and those men of the West were no match for the keen minds of the East. In 1859 the world’s first oil well was begun at Titusville, Pa., and that “black gold” quickly developed the Rockefeller fortune, John D. reputedly being the world’s first billionaire. It certainly emphasized the words of Solomon, “Money is a defense.” (Eccl. 7:12)
“Jordan overfloweth all his banks all the time of harvest.” (Joshua 3:15) As most of our readers know, the River Jordan is a type of the human race under the curse of sin and death. The Harvest of the Gospel Age began in 1874, and it needs little argument that the curse in just about every direction in all its phases has been greatly magnified in the past century. Practically all of the alluring pleasures – the auto, the airplane, radio, television, luxury liners and the like – have all made their appearance since 1874, all of which have tended to whet the appetite of the masses for the entertainment that goes with them.
When the Jews complained to Pharaoh that they were being overworked, he accused them of being lazy; and in this he typed Satan claiming that the people here in the end of the Age wanted too easy a time in their service to the Lord. “Ye have been called unto liberty” says St. Paul in Gal 5:13, and all of us who have received that “call” know of a certainty that great freedom of heart and mind has come with it. However, the reformers antagonized the conservatives by their liberalism; and this has tended to divide the human race into two separate camps – the conservatives and the radicals (the Reds) – and each group has accentuated its position more and more as the years go by. The situation is so tense now that it could explode into Armageddon any day. Those of us who remember the war in 1914 know only too well that the world never looked more serene than it did then, yet in one day the holocaust burst forth. There was no previous warning of what came in one day, and in the present conditions we need not expect any sounding of the trumpet beforehand. We shall wake up some morning and find it is upon us.
Pharaoh charged Moses and Aaron with using “vain words” (Ex. 5:9) – literally, ‘deceitful words.’ Sin, error and death can by no means be eliminated. The two sure and inescapable things are death and taxes, they say. For the Church to teach otherwise is just rank hypocrisy! The single gold standard, first initiated in 1877, also added its portion to the oppression of humanity. As a result of the 1929-1932 depression, the gold standard was given its death blow. When the Austrian Reichsbank failed in the Fall of 1931, it forced England off the gold standard; and substantially the same move caused the United States to discontinue the gold standard in 1933, making it unlawful for Americans to own gold, and forcing them to deliver their gold to the Government at $20.67 an ounce, who then immediately raised the price to $35 an ounce. At this writing (March 1977) the price is $150 per ounce, although it has been as high as $200 an ounce; and some of the pundits are predicting a price of $300 to $500 an ounce in the very near future. [In May gold was over $350 an ounce.] All of this tends to add to the insecurity of the general public.
This has resulted in abounding selfishness on all sides, which tends to aggravate the evils already here, and increasing new ones. The obstinate cruelty of Pharaoh eventually led to the Lord sending the plagues upon Egypt by Moses and Aaron by the power that God gave them. The first of these is described in Ex. 7:20, then eight more in Chapters 8, 9 and 10, then the Passover in Chapter 12, and in 12:29 the execution of the tenth plague itself – the destruction of all the firstborn of man and beast throughout the land of Egypt.
A little reflection will impress upon us what a terrible calamity was contained in that plague No. 10 – dead animals throughout the entire country, and a dead person in every home. Certainly there were not enough undertakers to handle such a multitude, nor sufficient help to dispose of the dead animals. It is little wonder that Pharaoh and all his henchmen were overly desirous of ridding themselves of those pestiferous Hebrews. Get out! and as quickly as possible! “There shall be a great cry throughout all the land of Egypt, such as there was none like it, nor shall be like it any more.” (Ex. 11:6)
“And it came to pass, that at midnight the Lord smote all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh that sat on his throne unto the firstborn of the captive that was in the dungeon; and all the firstborn of cattle... And he called for Moses and Aaron by night, and said, Rise up, and get you forth from among my people... also take your flocks and your herds... And the Egyptians were urgent upon the people, that they might send them out of the land in haste; for they said, We be all dead men.” (Ex. 12:29-33) The destroying angel’s work that night furnished visible proof that the Lord God of the Hebrews had sufficient power to accomplish His purposes; His words were not just idle talk. And His next move would almost certainly be against all the adults in Egypt. Thus the urgent anxiety to rid themselves of all the Jews in the country.
That it did eventually work against the adults is emphatically shown by the destruction of the entire Egyptian army in the Red Sea, which we will elaborate under the caption of
THE GREAT DRAMA OF THE AGES
The accomplishment in the Red Sea, resulting in the destruction of the Egyptian army was indeed “A MAGNIFICENT TYPE.” Before inflicting the tenth plague the Lord had said, “About midnight I will go out into the midst of Egypt” (Ex. 11:4), the antitype of which occurred in 1914, when the World War broke out in Europe, which at that time was in the very midst of Christendom. It will be recalled that shortly before the war came, the radicals were ready to destroy the capitalist structure; but the war cemented all classes in the various nations against what they thought was their common enemy – the Central Powers. As the trench warfare gradually consumed the very vitals of all nations involved, so by the Fall of 1917 Russia collapsed under the Bolshevik Revolution, which released a half million of seasoned troops on Germany’s eastern front. They were immediately sent against the allies on the western front in France, which almost succeeded in winning the war for the Central Powers, but the latter made a few bad mistakes, which proved to be their undoing. One of these was by the crown prince of Germany, son of Kaiser Wilhelm, sent to take the fortress of Verdun in France. It resulted in complete failure, and cost the German army half a million men – which was just more than they could afford to lose, in view of the terrible drain that had already been made on their physical and human resources.
The start of the great tribulation in 1914 had been forecast by the Truth Movement some twenty-five years before the event occurred; and, while it was not in itself the tenth plague, it was the means of inflicting the tenth plague. The Russian Czar had been the titular head of the Greek Catholic Church, and this had tended to enslave the Russian laborer in close duplication of the Jewish bondage in Egypt. But when the Kerensky-Lenin combination seized the government, they immediately went to work on the Greek Catholic Church. They brought the bodies of the dead saints – which had reputedly never decayed – out on the steps of the various churches, picked them apart in full view of the Russian people, and showed they were nothing but cotton dummies. The “angel of death” gave the Church a crippling blow from which it has never recovered.
In Ex. 11:6,7 Moses had predicted “there shall be a great cry throughout all the land of Egypt... But against any of the children of Israel there shall not a dog move his tongue, against man or beast: that ye may know how that the Lord cloth put a difference between the Egyptians and Israel.” This expression was antitypically carried out on Christendom – when they saw that many of their leaders – clerical and lay, shepherds and principals of the flock – would go into eternal extinction. While the German Kaiser is not fully included in this punishment, yet his abdication did cause great grief to many of the Lutheran leaders. Note the close similarity between v. 6 and the prophecy concerning Christendom in Dan. 12:1: “There shall be a time of trouble such as never was since there was a nation.” Then consider the words of Jesus in Matt. 24:21: “Then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.” (And we thank God for the assurance – “nor ever shall be.”)
As Moses forecast the humiliation of Pharaoh and his nobles in abject subserviency to him (“Come and bow down” – Ex. 11:8), as a result of the tenth plague, so our Lord forecast the humiliation of Satan’s special representatives in church, state, capital and society through the loss of their special leaders throughout Christendom. Before proceeding to the Red Sea experience, we believe it is in order here to quote Ex. 12:41: “At the end of the four hundred and thirty years, even the selfsame day it came to pass, that all the hosts of the Lord went out from the land of Egypt.” This reveals the care with which all of this recitation is recorded – this is link No. 20 of the true Bible chronology, this period extending from the covenant with Abraham to the Exodus from Egypt.
The exodus of the Jews from Egypt until they had crossed the Red Sea occurred by stages, some of which is given in Ex. 13:20-22: “They took their journey from Succoth ... And the Lord went before them by day in a pillar of a cloud... and by night in a pillar of fire, to give them light; to go by day and night.” In this they had fully separated themselves from every vestige of Egypt – typical of how true Christians during this Gospel Age completely sever relations with antitypical Egypt, the world in sin, error and death.
And this deliverance from Egypt is emphasized in the 13th Chapter of Exodus – in vs. 3, 9, 14, and 16; four times we are told, “With a strong hand hath the Lord brought thee out of Egypt.” And this was dramatically demonstrated by the pillar of cloud by day and the pillar of fire by night – all the while this same cloud was darkness for the Egyptian pursuers, but light to the Jews. Also, after they had crossed the Red Sea, and wanted to travel through Philistia on the way to Canaan, the Lord made it clear to them that they should not do this, because they were then no match for the warlike Philistines. However, a complete new generation was developed in their forty years’ wandering through the Wilderness of Sin – a much more rugged people, capable of battle with any of the fierce tribes of Canaan – a complete change from the Jews that had left Egypt.
Much the same method has been used throughout this Gospel Age toward those who accept Christianity. This is very lucidly explained by St. Paul in 1 Cor. 10:13 (after he had enumerated the five crises that the Jews had experienced on the march to Canaan): “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation make a way of escape, that ye may be able to bear it.” As we look back upon our own personal experiences, each of us can recognize that this principle operated in our lives, as we were gradually trained to “endure hardness as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.” (2 Tim. 2:3)
The pillar of cloud that guided and protected the Jews in their journey typified for this Gospel Age the Truth as due, which certainly instructs us in the way we should go. The pillar of cloud represents the due Truth as found in the New Testament during the Jewish and Gospel–Age harvests – the day time (Psa. 91:5, 6); and the pillar of fire represents the Old Testament Truth which was more prominent between those two periods, and again here in the extreme end of the Age. As these pillars led Israel to Canaan, so the Truth contained in the Bible has led, and will yet lead, spiritual Israel to the heavenly Canaan. To all who have received the Truth and the spirit of the Truth they have received their Gospel–Age Canaan inheritance, which is but a fore gleam of the greater heavenly inheritance which will eventually be their eternal portion. And as the typical pillars were not removed until Canaan was reached by the Jews, so the antitypical pillar (the Truth as due) will not be removed until the heavenly Canaan has been reached. although we know that the true Christians throughout the Age had not nearly the Truth we have today, yet they had sufficient for their needs to do the Lord’s will at that time.
THE RED SEA
The march of Israel from Egypt to the Red Sea is typical of the march of the restitutionists on the Highway of Holiness (Isa. 35:8), and their experience in the sea itself typified the great trial that will come during the Little Season (Rev. 20:7–9). “And it was told the king of Egypt that the people fled... he made ready his chariot... took six hundred chosen chariots, all the chariots of Egypt, and captains over every one of them. The Lord hardened the heart of Pharaoh... the children of Israel went out with a high hand. But the Egyptians pursued after them... overtook them encamping by the sea... And they said unto Moses... It had been better for us to serve the Egyptians, than that we should die in the wilderness. Moses said unto the people, Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord... the Egyptians whom you have seen today, ye shall see them again no more forever... The Lord said unto Moses, Stretch out shine hand over the sea and divide it: and the children of Israel shall go on dry ground through the midst of the sea.” (Ex. 14:5-16)
As stated previously, Pharaoh in this picture is a type of Satan; Egypt a type of the kingdom of darkness (“this present evil world” – Gal. 1:4); the children of Israel a type of all who eventually become God’s people; the Egyptians a type of the opponents of God’s people; the horses, false doctrines; the chariots, evil worldly organizations; the horsemen, of fallen men and angels; the Red Sea, type of the Second Death. (Rev. 20:6; 21:8) “Behold, I will harden the hearts of the Egyptians, and they shall follow them: and I will get me honor upon Pharaoh... and the Egyptians shall know that I am the Lord.” (Ex. 14: 17, 18)
The Israelites going through the Sea on dry ground was due in large part to a peculiarity of the Sea, which was at that point about two miles wide; and when the tide ebbs, it allows passage through the Sea. It is of record that Napoleon sent his cavalry through the Sea at this point – when the tide was out. However, when the tide comes in it does so with unusual power and suddenness – eight or nine feet deep. Also, Ex. 14:19 tells us, “The angel of God, which went before the camp of Israel, removed and went behind them; the pillar of the cloud went from before their face, and stood behind them.” Thus, it was a “cloud of darkness” to the Egyptians all that night; they could not see the Jews at all. Nor could they see each other clearly, so that “they took off their chariot wheels so that they crave them heavily.”
“The Lord said unto Moses, Stretch out shine hand over the sea, that the waters may come again upon the Egyptians... and the waters returned, and covered the chariots and the horsemen, and all the host of Pharaoh that came into the sea after them; there remained not so much as one of them.” (Ex. 14:26-28) Thus the entire Egyptian army was completely destroyed by the onrushing tide. “The Lord saved Israel that day out of the hand of the Egyptians; and Israel saw the Egyptians dead upon the sea shore.” (v. 30) Thus is typed the utter annihilation of every evil thing and person (the goats), leaving the earth and the sheep forever free from all evil. This is graphically described by Jesus in His parable of the sheep and goats (Matt. 25:31-46), the last verse of which we quote from the Diaglott, “These shall go forth to the aionian cutting–off [the goats]; but the righteous [the sheep] to aionian life.” The footnote on this verse reads as follows:
“That is, in the fire mentioned in verse 41. The Common Version, and many modern ones, render ‘kolasin aionioon,’ everlasting punishment, conveying the idea, as generally interpreted, of ‘basinos,’ torment. Kolasin in its various forms occurs only in three other places in the New Testament – Acts 4:21; 2 Peter 2:9; 1 John 4:18. It is derived from kolazoo, which signifies, 1. To cut off; as lopping off branches of trees, to prune, 2. To restrain, to repress. The Greeks write ‘The charioteer [kalazei] restrains his fiery steeds.’ 3. To chastise, to punish. To cut off an individual from life, or society, or even to restrain, is esteemed as punishment; hence has arisen this third metaphorical use of the word. The primary signification has been adopted, because it agrees better with the second member of the sentence, thus preserving the force and beauty of the antithesis. The righteous go to life, the wicked to the cutting off from life, or death – in harmony with 2 Thes. 1:9: ‘Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power.”’
As Pharaoh’s chariots were not recovered, so will the antitypical chariots (evil organizations) never be brought back again from annihilation. The waters covering the Egyptian host (Ex. 14:28) types the complete and eternal disappearance in the Second Death of the post–Millennial wicked (the goats), who allowed themselves to be led into wickedness by their designing leaders. And as the Egyptian host did not return (“the Egyptians dead upon the sea shore” – v. 30), so will their antitypes never return from the Second Death. And the Egyptian horsemen not returning types the eternal annihilation of the antitypical leaders – the teachers that are instrumental in their deceptions. Not one Egyptian who entered the sea escaped that day, typical of the eternal annihilation of every one of the post–Millennial wicked. And the Israelites seeing the sea shore filled with dead Egyptians indicates that the sheep of the parable will have full knowledge of the Second–Death operation and those destroyed by it. This includes Satan himself and all his spiritual henchmen. (“Destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil.” – Heb. 2:14) All of these will be stopped at the threshold of the Ages to come, none of them being allowed to enter those Ages of bliss following the final trial. Thus God will have a sinless world forever.
“Israel saw that great work which the Lord did upon the Egyptians.” (Ex. 14:31) Thus will the sheep recognize that it is God’s great power that has exterminated the evil persons and their works, which will instill great reverence into the hearts and minds of all the sheep. As a result, “the people believed the Lord and his servant Moses.” (v. 31) Thus, throughout all Ages will the faithful sheep class exercise full confidence in the Christ Company as to their persons, characters, words and works in their capacity of being God’s vicegerent to accomplish His good purposes throughout the entire universe.
Once this performance is seen in its tremendous implications, we believe our readers will agree with us that the deliverance of Israel from Egypt through the Red Sea is probably the grandest type in the entire Old Testament. As Moses led Israel from bondage in Egypt, our Lord (antitypical Moses) leads His people from the bondage of sin, error and death, free from “this present evil world” into that station where we “shall know the Truth, and the Truth shall make you free.” (John 8:32)
The punishment that was meted out to Pharaoh and his host is typical of the punishment that will be visited upon the incorrigible at the end of the Little Season – as humane an ending as any one could devise for a hardened criminal. “The wages of sin is death.” (Rom. 6:23) No one ever asked to be born into this world – “The gift of God is life”; therefore, any abuse of that gift could justly demand nothing other than it be taken back by the Giver, and this is exactly what will be done. “What cloth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy.” (Micah 6:8) And, if that is what is required of us, we should certainly expect as much from the One Who makes the rules. The Red Sea in this type depicts the “Second Death” – a final punishment that will be meted out to all who will not “learn righteousness” when a full opportunity has been given. No good man would torment a mad dog; he would simply destroy it as humanely as possible. It is no good to itself, or any other creature. All of this is in full harmony with the God we worship – perfect in love, wisdom, justice and power. “Great and marvelous are thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy ways, thou King of saints.” (Rev. 15:3) Even in His justice He is merciful!
Lest we make believe that we are wiser than we are, in conclusion of the series of The Magnificent Type we would state that much of what is contained in these articles has been gleaned from the writers who have gone before us – much more capable men than we, especially is this true regarding the Parousia and Epiphany Messengers. We recognize a great debt of gratitude to the both of them for their help in enabling us to compose such a teaching as that contained in these three articles.
“The Lord shall judge the world in righteousness, he shall minister judgment to the people in uprightness. The Lord also will be a refuge for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble. And they that know thy name will put their trust in thee: for thou, Lord, hast not forsaken them that seek thee.” (Psa. 9:8-10)
Sincerely your brother, John J. Hoefle, Pilgrim
(Reprint No. 269, November 1977)
LETTER OF GENERAL INTEREST
Dear Sister Emily,
Thanks for your letter, the copy of the UIWU Bulletin, etc. I’m looking forward to the time when the other copies of your past issues will be available... Here is an idea ... You could send me the articles and I would make as many copies of each missing issues as you need.
There is no doubt in my mind that the door to the High Calling closed in 1914, and that there are certain consecrators in the so-called “interim period” who are Youthful Worthies or Modern Worthies, as well as others who are of no elect class, but simply find themselves among Bible Students by inheritance or some other combination of reasons. ... I have met with other groups. They don’t usually want to hear anything about Epiphany truth. But many of them are still good friends of mine... I will meet with them at my own discretion, and I will maintain correspondence and relationship only with individuals who are broad-minded and have a generous spirit... If someone wants to know what I think then I will tell them. But I won’t force it upon them. I tried it a couple of times and it doesn’t work. Each one needs to be convinced in their own minds.
It will probably surprise you, but right now I am meeting with the local Jehovah’s Witnesses. Not because I agree with them, as I’m not studying with them, but rather I am studying them. They think I am a beginner and don’t realize that I actually know more than they do... Just upon first reading some of their material and by reading between the lines their errors are quite apparent.
Well, that’s about it for today. Best wishes for your welfare, both physically and spiritually.
Sincerely your brother ------- (MICHIGAN)
MOSES THE SERVANT OF GOD
By Nebo’s lonely mountain,
On this side Jordan’s wave,
In a vale in the land of Moab
There lies a lonely grave;
And no man knows that sepulcher
And no man saw it e’er;
For the angels of God upturned the sod
And laid the dead man there.
That was the grandest funeral
That ever passed on earth;
But no man heard the trampling,
Or saw the train go forth;
Noiselessly as the daylight
Comes when the night is done,
And the crimson streak on ocean’s cheek
Grows into the great sun.
Noiselessly as the springtime
Her crown of verdure weaves,
And all the trees on all the hills
Open their thousand leaves;
So without sound of music,
Or voice of them that wept,
Silently down from the mountain’s crown
The great procession swept.
Perchance the bald old eagle
On great Beth–Peor’s height,
Out of his lonely eyrie
Looked on the wondrous sight;
Perchance the lion stalking,
Still shuns that hallowed spot;
For beast and bird have seen and heard
That which man knoweth not.
But, when the warrior dieth,
His comrades in the war,
With arms reversed and muffled drums
Follow his funeral car;
They show the banners taken,
They tell his battles won,
And after him lead his masterless steed,
While peals the minute gun.
Amid the noblest of the land
We lay the sage to rest,
And give the bard an honored place,
That ever breathed a word;
And never earth’s philosopher traced,
With his golden pen,
On the deathless page, truths half so sage
As he wrote down for men.
And had he not high honor?
The hillside for a pall!
To lie in state, while angels wait,
With stars for tapers tall,
With costly marble dressed,
In the great ministering transept
Where lights like glories fall,
And the seated choir sings,
And the organ rings
Along the emblazoned wall.
This was the truest warrior
That ever buckled sword;
This the most gifted poet
And dark rough pines like tossing plumes,
Over his bier to wave,
And God’s own hand,
In that lonely land,
To lay him in the grave.
In that strange grave without a name,
Whence his uncoffined clay
Shall break again – O wondrous thought!
Before the Judgment Day,
And stand, with glory wrapped around,
On the hills he never trod,
And speak of the strife that won our life
With the carnate son of God.
O lonely grave in Moab’s land!
O dark Beth-Peor’s hill!
Speak to these curious hearts of ours,
And teach them to be still.
God hath his mysteries to grace,
Ways that we cannot tell,
He hides them deep like the hidden sleep
Of him he loved so well.