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What Pastor Russell Taught
What Pastor Russell Taught
Pages 321-390
The first part of this book consists of articles from the
Zion's Watch Tower and thus are not duplicated on this disk .
The Sin-Offering
The Covenants
The following pages are taken from a stenographic report
of a “Question Meeting” conducted by Pastor Charles T.
Russell, of Allegheny, in St. Louis, Missouri, Sunday,
August 11, 1907. The brethren who have arranged for its
publication send it out with the sincere hope and prayer
that it may be blessed of the Lord in making more clear to
the minds of His people into whose hands it may fall, the
“Harvest Truth” concerning the subjects discussed; to the
end that all the “Watchmen” may see “eye to eye.” Peace be
to you!
We are glad to be able to reprint these items for the
benefit of those who do not have the original Towers or
Introductory—Harvest Truth
I was glad to accept the invitation of the St. Louis Church
to hear certain questions, perplexing to some, and give
answers to the best of my ability, with the hope and prayer
that the subject may be clear to our minds. We are living
in a time when the Lord declares his people shall see eye to
eye. He says this shall be a characteristic of our day:
"When the Lord shalld bring again his people the watchmen
shall see eye to eye." (Isa. 52:8.) We trust that while some
of us, called Elders, might be called watchmen in a special
sense, yet all the Lord’s people are watchmen. We are all
seeing what the Lord our God has brought to us, and
looking to that word which is the only revelation of the
Divine will. So all should see eye to eye. Those asleep are
not watchmen, but as soon as they become watchmen they
will come to see eye to eye. As we come nearer and nearer
to an object it should be more clearly seen by all of u s.
If we recognize that we are in the harvest time of the
Gospel Age, then we ought to recognize certain things as
being due to be understood more clearly, yet at the same
time we ought not to expect anything particularly different
from what has been the course of the Lord’s dealing
throughout the past; but so surely as we are, we ought to
expect something peculiar to the harvest time. What are
we to expect? With us the Jewish nation is a figure, an
example and type. You remember having studied that
matter. They had their priesthood, their high priests and
under priests, we have ours; they had
their tabernacle and we have ours; they had their golden
candlestick and we have our golden candlestick of Divine
truth and light. So when it comes to the harvest we find
that their harvest was a particular pattern of this age. If
Jesus was present to do the work there, so he will do the
work here. What was the work? Separating and reaping,
and gathering together iof the Lord’s elect. How was that
done? By the promulgation of greater knowledge and
greater truth. He made known certain things.
Well, then, we should expect there to be greater knowledge
of God’s plans pertaining to this time, as there was to that
harvest time. We ought to remember that that was the end
of the Jewish age and the opening of the Gospel age, and
the Apostle, by inspiration, speaks of the light that is to
come upon the “ends of the ages,” upon the ends of those
ages where they met, and these two ages where they meet.
That light did not precede our Lord’s presence, and while
there has not been gross darkness over this Gospel age, the
ispecial lightd from God shines upon the i"ends of the
ages."d It is in harmony with this that you and I have
received from the Lord the great blessing of clearer light. It
would be very difficult for us to say what is the most
valuable feature of Divine truth. It is all important, all
necessary, that the man of God may be “thoroughly
furnished.” (2 Tim. 3:16,17.)
Now, dear friends, this clear light on the end of the age
came in connection with the understanding of a mystery.
What mystery? The “mystery” the Apostle Paul talks about.
You remember how this was on the end of the Jewish age
and the opening of the Gospel age. The Lord made known
the mystery “not made known to other ages and
dispensations and which is now made manifest.” (Rom.
16:25,26; Col. 1:26,27.) You remember how frequently he
speaks of this mystery. He explained that the Messiah
to come was to be not only our Lord Jesus Christ, but
also the Church his Bride. They supposed that the great
Messiah was coming and was to be king of their nation and
their nation was to convert the world, but they did not
know he was going to itake out of the Jewish nation the
ijoint heirsd of the world.
Then the Apostle says there was another part they did
not understand. God not only proposed to take some of
that body of Christ from the Jews, but from all the nations
of the earth, that He might make of each one a part of the
Christ. This is what the Apostle brings to our attention.
He says God gave Jesus to be the head of the Church. This
is "the mystery" not made known in previous ages. This
mystery was not even made known to all the apostles. You
remember it was made known to the Apostle Paul, and
while the writings of the other apostles are in harmony with
this thought, you do not get it from them—you get it from
Paul. He tells us that God had given to him visions and
revelations more than to all the other apostles, and it is
manifest from his writings, that he had this clearer vision
and knowledge. So it is from the Apostle Paul’s writings
that we get this knowledge of the mystery.
Peter did not understand it: he was at first in opposition
to the Gentiles, but the Lord sent to him the vision of the
sheet held by the four corners, by which he was shown he
must not consider the Gentiles any longer as common and
unclean. (Acts 10.) You see, then, that at that time the
Apostle Peter did not have the thought of the oneness of the
Body of Christ. That is a part of the mystery Paul says was
made more clear to him through visions and revelations
than to them all. And yet that very thought was lost sight
of—the oneness of Christ and the Church—when the
Church began to get the wrong impression that it was to
convert the world. When they thought of everybody, they
could not think of the “Body of Christ” including everybody.
It destroyed this thought that the Church is the mysterious
body of Christ that is to rule all the earth and bless the
So this thought was hidden from all during the Gospel
age, and our parents and friends did not see this subject,
which is now clear to us. It is clear to us because we are
living in the harvest time of the age, when God is brushing
away the darkness and allowing our eyes to see and
understand. This light was lost sight of during the Gospel
age, and now this is the particular thought brought to your
attention, namely: That Christ the head and the Church
his body, is the great anti-typical Moses, the great Prophet
God has been raising up, through which the blessing is to
come to Israel, and through Israel to all the nations (Acts
3:22,23.) Christ is the head, and through the members of
his Elect is to bless Israel and all the nations. When did
this feature of light come to our attention? It came to my
attention in 1869. I was thinking along these lines, seeing
that our friends in the churches were wrong, and seeing
the second coming of Christ was the thing to be expected,
and along about 1873 I got so far as to see that there was
restitution coming to the world, but I did not understand
what restitution meant. I supposed that when the world
was blessed it would come to be in the same sort of
spiritual condition as the Church, and not until 1878 did
the light of that feature come, in respect to the fact that the
Church is to be of a separate and distinct nature, and is to
be used by the Lord in blessing Israel and through them
blessing all the nations. What is the basis? The matter we
are to discuss this morning—The type of the Sin Atonement,
and the Day of Atonement.
You have it in a booklet called “Tabernacle Shadows,”
published in the Fall of 1880—there was the basis of it.
Christ is the great High Priest and the Church is
associated with him as the under priests, and to be
associated with him in the glories of the future when the
atonement day is over and the sacrifices ended. So have in
mind that the basis of any light we have today rests upon
this subject of the atonement sacrifices and the
sin-offerings of this Day of Atonement. The light has come
along these lines. God has been pleased to bless this
thought. If that becomes evident to you, you will ibed ivery
slow to cast aside that which has brought you to the light
you have.d It is on this line God has granted all the light in
which we are now rejoicing.
I shall be pleased to answer any questions.
(Question.) How does the “Sin-Offering,” typified in the
Atonement day sacrifices, differ from the Ransom, or
corresponding price, paid by Jesus Christ for Adam’s
forfeited life?
(Answer.) The two are not to be associated at all, any
more than two of our Lord’s parables. If you take the
parable of the Wheat and the Tares and the parable of the
Ten Virgins and try to combine them, you will find it
impossible to do so, because one is discussing one subject
and the other another subject. They are both true, and
plausible, and both teach beautiful lessons, but not the
same lesson. They are both parables given
of God; they do not contradict, but they do not teach the
same lesson. And so when we talk about the Ransom, that
is one thought, iand the Sin-offering is another thought, and
we are inot to mix the two.d
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