December 8, 1892
THAT the “evangelical” churches of the United States have taken possession of the governmental authority of the United States, is plain to every one who will candidly consider the subject. That they purpose to keep this power and use it, they have plainly and repeatedly declared.
WE are inquiring what effect this course will have upon the churches, and through them upon the State? So far, we have found that the effect upon the churches has been, stating it briefly, to commit them to open apostasy from the Lord and from his gospel; to make them the chiefest law-breakers in the Nation, even the destroyers of government itself; and to form them into the grandest system of bribery that this Nation ever saw—bribery in politics, bribery in business, and bribery in amusements. And all this, that they may be confirmed in their effort to make void the law of the Most High.
THE churches profess that the course which they have taken is essential to the preservation of the State, and in this the salvation of the Nation. What effect, then, can such a course have, and only have? We have before shown how that it was to help her bear an overweight of worldliness and worldly influences, that she grasped the arm of the State and formed this illicit connection with worldly power. We there pointed out the utter incongruity of seeking deliverance from an evil, by a positive alliance with the chiefest source of that evil; and how the only effect this could have upon the churches would be infinitely to increase the burden which they already found themselves unable to bear alone. How can that save the Nation?
THE Church of Christ is the divinely-appointed means through which God would call the nations to seek the Lord that they might find him and be delivered from this present evil world; what, then, when these professed churches of Christ themselves seek to the power of this present evil world, join themselves to it, and put their dependence upon it? How can that save the Nation?
THE Church of Christ is the divinely-appointed agency to “persuade men” to join themselves to the Lord: what, then, when these professed churches of Christ threaten congressmen in order that they themselves may succeed in joining themselves to the Government? How can that preserve the State or save the Nation?
THE Church of Christ is the divinely-appointed agency to persuade men to send up their petitions to the Lord for help, and for deliverance from every burden and from every evil: what, then, when the professed churches of Christ themselves send up their petitions to men, even though the men be congressmen, and though the petitions be backed up with threats? How can that save the Nation?
BOTH society and the State are already cursed with the unsatiable demand for office, or position of trust, in return for political service rendered: what, then, when the professed churches of Christ make this the very chosen channel through which they would make successful their aims upon the State? What effect, then, can this have upon society and the State, other than to increase this curse even to ruinous depths?
BRIBERY is already become so common as easily to frustrate the will of the people: when, then, when these churches take the lead “bribing with a monopoly of worldly honors and emoluments,” all whom they can seduce to compliance with their arbitrary will, regardless of the will of the people whether expressed in the supreme law or in the direct voice of the people? What can be the effect of this upon the State, other than to increase in untold ratio the already too general corruption?
BY the enactment of wholesome laws, the people have been doing their best to protect themselves from the rule of the tyrannical spirit of the boycott. But how can the people protect themselves from this despotism, when the churches control the law-making power for the general community, and make the boycott in all business relations their chosen means by which to force submission to their will in the local community. What, then, can be the effect of this, other than to so cultivate the spirit of spying and treachery as to destroy mutual confidence and individual integrity; set every man’s hand against his neighbor; and fill the land with deceit and violence?
LAWLESSNESS is already so prevalent as almost to threaten the existence of a republican form of government: what, then, when the professed churches of Christ at one leap land themselves in the lead in this, by disregarding the supreme law, overriding the Constitution, and taking the governmental authority out of the hands of the people and into their own lawless hands? In this they have accomplished their long-announced “object” “to change that feature of our fundamental law” which declares that “governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed.” But how can this preserve the State? How can this save the Nation? What effect indeed can it possibly have other than to produce here that condition of lawlessness and confusion, yet of ecclesiastical despotism, that is always created by attempts of the Church to rule?
HERE, then, are these churches  professsing to be the churches of Christ, yet having gone away from him, their rightful Lord, and joined themselves to another; professing to minister the power of God, yet depending upon the power of man; professing to minister the gospel of Christ, they actually minister the laws of men; professing to persuade men with the message of justification by faith in Christ, they actually compel men by the condemnation of the law of men; professing to lead in the way of righteousness, uprightness and sincerity, they actually lead in the way of unrighteousness, corruption, and deceit; professing themselves to be models of Protestantism, they have actually joined hands with Romanism and follow her customs and require all to receive the signs of her authority; professing to be the example in all things good, they actually set the example in the chief things that are bad.
THERE is but one thing more that they can possibly do in this direction, and even this they will do, that is, enter into alliance with Satanic power itself, by joining hands with Spiritualism. This they will do as certainly as they have done that which they have done. Then will be completely fulfilled the prophecy which now is but partly fulfilled—Revelation 18:2, 3. We have already shown how these churches have presented themselves as “a cage of every unclean and hateful bird;” but then the whole of the verse will be fulfilled and the world will hear that cry of the angel of the Lord which comes “mightily with a strong voice saying, Babylon the great, is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird. For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth have waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies.”
AT the same time there is “heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins and that ye receive not of her plagues. For her sins have reached unto heaven and God hath remembered her iniquities.” Revelation 18:4, 5. Thank the Lord, there are yet some of the people of God in these churches. There are yet some Christians there. But they can not remain there much longer without becoming partakers of her sins. They can not stay there much longer and remain Christians. They can not stay there much longer without receiving of her plagues, and of the judgments of God upon her iniquities. Her judgment cometh and hasteth greatly. “Strong is the Lord God that judgeth her.” And it is written: “A mighty angel took up a stone like a great millstone, and cast it into the sea, saying, Thus with violence shall that great city Babylon be thrown down and shall be found no more at all.” Revelation 18:8, 10, 21.
SUCH being the final result to the churches, of this course of evil in which they have even now gone so far; and the churches being one with the State in this course; it is inevitable that the ruin of the churches will be the ruin also of the State. Therefore it is as plain as A B C that this course upon which these churches have entered means the destruction of the State and the ruin of the Nation. What they in their apostasy and bad ambition promise shall save the Nation only proves its speedy and awful ruin. This is certain.
NOT only is this evident from what has already been said, but this same thing has been worked out once in history, for the instruction of all people and nations, showing clearly enough just what the result must be. In the original apostasy, the Church succeeded in joining herself to the State, promising like this to save the State. The means then employed by Constantine and the bishops, in establishing the “Christian” religion and making that a “Christian State” were the same as now employed here, and were such as to win only hypocrites. This was bad enough in itself, yet the hypocrisy was voluntary; but when through the agency of the Sunday laws the Church then, as now, secured control of the civil power to compel all who were not church-members to act as though they were, hypocrisy was made compulsory; and everybody who was not voluntarily a church-member and a hypocrite, was compelled either to be a hypocrite, anyhow, or a rebel. And as in addition to this, all were required to change or revise their faith according as the majority in the councils changed and decreed; all moral and spiritual integrity was destroyed. Hypocrisy became a habit; dissimulation and fraud became a necessity of life; and the very moral fiber of men and society was vitiated.
THE pagan superstitions, the pagan delusions, and the pagan vices, which had been brought into the Church by the apostasy, and clothed with a form of godliness, had wrought such corruption that the society of which it was a part could no longer exist. From it no more good could possibly come, and it must be swept away. “The uncontrollable progress of avarice, prodigality, voluptuousness, theater-going, intemperance, lewdness; in short, of all the heathen vices, which Christianity had come to eradicate, still carried the Roman Empire and people with rapid strides toward dissolution, and gave it at last into the hands of the rude, but simple and morally vigorous, barbarians.” “Nothing but the divine judgment of destruction upon this nominally Christian, but essentially heathen, world, could open the way for the moral regeneration of society. There must be new, fresh nations, if the Christian civilization, prepared in the old Roman Empire, was to take firm root and bear ripe fruit.”—Schaff.
And onward those barbarians came, swiftly and in multitudes. For a hundred years the dark cloud had been hanging threatheningly over the borders of the empire, encroaching slightly upon the west and breaking occasionally upon the east. But at the close of the fourth century the tempest burst in all its fury, and the flood was flowing ruinously. And finally, in 476, when Odoacer, king of the Heruli, became king of Italy, the last vestige of the Western Empire of Rome was gone, and was divided among the ten nations of barbarians of the North.
Wherever these savages went, they carried fire and slaughter, and whenever they departed, they left desolation and ruin in their track, and carried away multitudes of captives. Thus was the proud empire of Western Rome swept from the earth; and that which Constantine and his ecclesiastical flatterers had promised one another should be the everlasting salvation of the State, proved its speedy and everlasting ruin.
IN that case the Lord made the savage nations of the North the instruments of his judgment in sweeping away the mass of corruption which the union of Church and State had built up there. But in this case where can any such instruments be found? There are none. Civilization has encompassed the earth. Not only that, but in this case “all nations” are involved in the corruption. Where then shall the Lord find a people to execute his judgment and sweep away this mass of corruption? For the reasons given they can not be found upon the earth. A people is found, however, and here is the Lord’s description of them:
Blow ye the trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm in my holy mountain: let all the inhabitants of the land tremble: for the day of the Lord cometh, for it is nigh at hand; a day of darkness and of gloominess, a day of clouds and of thick darkness, as the morning spread upon the mountains: a great people and a strong; there hath not been ever the like, neither shall be any more after it, even to the years of many generations. A fire devoureth before them; and behind them a flame burneth: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; yea, and nothing shall escape them. The appearance of them is as the appearance of horses; and as horsemen, so shall they run. Like the noise of chariots on the tops of mountains shall they leap, like the noise of a flame of fire that devoureth the stubble, as a strong people set in battle array. Before their face the people shall be much pained: all faces shall gather blackness. They shall run like mighty men; they shall climb the wall like men of war; and they shall march every one on his ways, and they shall not break their ranks: neither shall one thrust another; they shall walk every one in his path: and when they fall upon the sword, they shall not be wounded. They shall run to and fro in the city; they shall run upon the wall, they shall climb up upon the houses; they shall enter in at the windows like a thief. The earth shall quake before them; the heavens shall tremble: the sun and the moon shall be dark, and the stars shall withdraw their shining: and the Lord shall utter his voice before his army: for his camp is very great: for he is strong that executeth his word: for the day of the Lord is great and very terrible; and who can abide it? Joel 2:1-11.
And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war. His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself. And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God. And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS. Revelation 19:11-16.
“And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.” Matthew 24:31. “And I saw as it were a sea of glass mingled with fire: and them that had gotten the victory over the beast, and over his image, and over his mark, and over the number of his name, stand on the sea of glass, having the harps of God. And they sing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, Great and marvelous are thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy ways, thou King of saints.” Revelation 15:2, 3.
“Come out of her my people,” and prepare to meet your Lord.
A. T. J.