Volume 48

The Lord's Coming (7)

J. Taylor

Page: 409

Revelation 1:7; Revelation 2:25 - 28, Revelation 3:10,21; Acts 1:9 - 11

J.T. No doubt all are aware that our subject is being considered in relation to the books in which it is found; what comes before us at this time should be viewed in relation to the book of Revelation, a book dealing with closing events of our dispensation, making way for another era. It was written to the seven assemblies which were in Asia, symbolical by their number of the whole assembly at that time, or by extension, the whole assembly from Pentecost until the Lord's return. It is a book that is peculiarly for the consideration of those who form the assembly; and although it treats of subjects outside of the present dispensation, we should be sufficiently interested to read them; in fact, there is a blessing attached to the reading of this book. It is said to be, "Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave to him", Revelation 1:1. The introduction therefore calls attention to the economy which God has brought in, and it is to be understood in the last days as at the beginning. The present period is an economy set up in the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit -- the Son and the Spirit having taken places of subjection and service -- the Father being supreme, representing the Deity. So that the book of Revelation is said to be given to Christ by God. Verse 1 says God gave the Revelation to Him. The Lord is therefore seen in the place of subjection, receiving from God, in keeping with what He had said to the disciples after His resurrection when they inquired whether He would at that time restore the kingdom to Israel. He had said, "It is not yours to know times or seasons, which the Father has placed in his own authority", (Acts 1:7). Now, according to the teaching of this book, the Father is giving to the

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Son what is called a "revelation". It is said to be, "Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave to him, to shew to his bondmen what must shortly take place, (Revelation 1:1)".

Having these thoughts before us, we may understand a little better what is said about the Lord's coming specifically. There are more passages in the book referring to the Lord's coming than those read, but there will not be time to consider them now. The first is an allusion to the manner of it: "Behold, he comes with the clouds, and every eye shall see him, and they which have pierced him, and all the tribes of the land shall wail because of him", verse 7. The passage read in Acts 1 amplifies this verse, the two men in white telling the disciples, "This Jesus who has been taken up from you into heaven, shall thus come in the manner in which ye have beheld him going into heaven", verse 11. Stress is laid upon the manner of His going and coming.

J.S. In Acts 1, a cloud receives Him out of their sight. What do you understand by the clouds connected with His appearing here?

J.T. It is significant that they appear in both passages. In the Revelation, it is "he comes with the clouds"; that is, they are all in mind. In the passage in the Acts, it is a "cloud received him out of their sight". These passages lead up to the question of what clouds signify. They seem to point to the dignity of divine Persons. As they move publicly they are thus attended. The first mention of clouds is in Genesis 9:13 where Jehovah says, "I set my bow in the clouds", as if it were a special distinction that He should utilise clouds for that purpose. And then in Exodus, the cloud is referred to constantly, from the movement out of Egypt, as a symbol of the divine presence, of divine dignity.

A.N.W. Why is it a voice 'out of the cloud' in Matthew

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17, and 'from the heavens' in Matthew 3:17, saying, "This is my beloved Son",?

J.T. Well, each has its significance, having the glory of Christ m view. It is a bright cloud in Matthew 17, intensifying what has been remarked. As to chapter 3, it is said that the heavens were opened to Him , which is another feature of His glory. The heavens are greatly stressed in Matthew.

H.H. "Eyewitnesses of his majesty" (2 Peter 1:16) would relate to Matthew 17. Peter speaks of what refers to majesty.

J.T. Quite so; so Matthew speaks about the bright cloud, and the voice coming out of it. It would be the Father's residence, so to speak. It was the Father's voice, but out of the cloud. In 1 Thessalonians 4:17 the apostle says, "caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air". The rapture is in mind. The correct reading is "in clouds". In Revelation it is the clouds -- the complete idea. But the idea of dignified attendance is in mind right through. In Acts 1:7 the Lord says, "It is not yours to know times or seasons, which the Father has placed in his own authority". Then in Mark 13:32, there is a similar statement: "But of that day or of that hour no one knows, neither the angels who are in heaven, nor the Son, but the Father",. The Lord is therefore placing this matter of times and seasons where it belongs; that is, in the Father's exclusive knowledge; not that other divine Persons are excluded from divine thoughts and counsels, but in the economy into which God has come, the Son and the Spirit are in the place of service and subjection, and all else is in the Father's hands.

W.B-w. Does the giving of further light to John, as recorded in the book of Revelation, affect that now?

J.T. This book, of course, was written since He spoke to the disciples at the beginning; it is "Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave to him, to shew to his bondmen what must shortly take place; and he signified

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it, sending by his angel, to his bondman John", Revelation 1:1. John is viewed here as a prophet -- a bondman, of course, but a prophet rather than an apostle. What the book contains, greatly adds to what the Lord had told the apostles, but there are certain things it does not disclose. We cannot say the day nor the hour; that is reserved by the Father.

H.H. Time is running out quickly now, but it is dealt with by the Father; and does not the position of Christ in Revelation stand in relation to that? It mentions periods of time, such as about half an hour, days, months, etc. The apportionment of time is under the hand of the Father.

J.T. Yes, the principle, "until the period fixed by the father", is mentioned in Galatians 4:2. The question in Acts 1:6 was, "Lord, is it at this time". It was not a question whether the kingdom of Israel would be restored; that was certain, but they had in mind the time of it. In Mark 13:32 it is recorded, "But of that day or of that hour no one knows, neither the angels who are in heaven, nor the Son, but the Father",. That day and hour are still secret. No one is entitled to fix that date. It is in the Father's hand.

A.N.W. The Lord's words in Mark are precise on that point. Their query is, "when shall these things be?" Mark 13:4.

H.H. Would it not indicate that there was not a right understanding of Christianity or of the assembly? The assembly having come in, has temporarily stopped the prophetic clock. Is that right?

J.T. Yes; Daniel had exercises like that. He went by books, and knew what to pray for at a given time, and then the answer is given in terms of appreciation of his exercises. He is said to be "greatly beloved", as he was praying. But then Gabriel goes on to say, "Seventy weeks are apportioned out upon thy people and upon thy holy city", Daniel 9:24. That is what you allude to.

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That period has still to run its course and enters into this book of Revelation, but Daniel is a representative man as to all this. He did not get everything in detail, but he got the general thought of seventy weeks, "to close the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make expiation for iniquity, and to bring in the righteousness of the ages, and to seal the vision and prophet, and to anoint the holy of holies", Daniel 9:24. The culminating thing was that there should be the resumption of the service of God. And later he is told to go his way, and that he should stand in his lot at the end of the days. He lived on until the reign of Cyrus, who was to build the house. The seventy weeks began as the command went forth to restore and build Jerusalem, Ezra 1:2. The period is therefore in a general way intelligible to faith. But then, what is intervening between the sixty-ninth and seventieth week is what we are speaking about, sixty-nine weeks (that is, seven weeks and sixty and two weeks) have elapsed, and there is but one remaining week still to come; indeed, there is a doubt as to whether it is to be a full week. It is more likely half a week, and therefore it requires great attention. But the exact date when the half-week begins cannot be reckoned; it hinges on the extent of the present dispensation. This is left open. When the saints are caught up to be with the Lord, according to 1 Thessalonians 4, then the reckoning can take place at once. It will be very brief.

H.H. Will you say a word as to why the assembly, as referred to in the first three chapters, comes into the prophetic range in Revelation?

J.T. There are three subdivisions which are made by the Lord Himself. Having touched John, He said, in verse 19, "Write therefore what thou hast seen Revelation 1:19". That is one thing. It is the general vision; what he saw in relation to Christ according to chapter 1. Then, "the things that are, Revelation 1:19" would relate to the seven assemblies.

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And then, "the things that are about to be after these Revelation 1:19". That has not transpired as yet. When those things begin is the question which we cannot answer. The Lord Himself leaves it in the Father's province as to when the assembly is to be actually translated. When that takes place we can count. The completion of the seventy weeks starts there. But it comes into this book and therefore applies to ourselves, for the Revelation is addressed to the seven assemblies.

Paul had special impressions which the twelve did not have. Those who understand the assembly involving the mystery, have instincts that exceed what the saints under the ministry of the twelve had. The Lord says to Saul, "why dost thou persecute me?"(Acts 9:4). The saints were Himself. The mystery was bound up in that, and inasmuch as it is an organism, inclusive of the Lord Himself, in a sense -- because He is the Head of it -- there are instincts which did not exist before, and these instincts help us greatly as to the time of the Lord's return. The Spirit of God would cause us to be aglow with the thought of it. Hence, "Behold, the bridegroom; go forth to meet Him (Matthew 25:6)". That midnight cry has gone out and has stirred up these spiritual instincts and affections that are in the organism -- the assembly. Then whilst you cannot speak definitely, you have the sense that things are coming to a close, yet we have to wait for the actual removal of the assembly to begin to count aright as to the last week referred to in Daniel.

C.A.M. What you say seems to throw light on these four words of the book -- "Revelation of Jesus Christ". His intimacy with the assembly brings it into the understanding of the book.

J.T. Quite so. He received this revelation from God. The assembly is taken into it as into all else relative to the testimony. Hence the Lord says, "I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify these things to you in the

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assemblies", (Revelation 22:16). They stir up spiritual feelings and affections, so that the saints go forth to meet Him. The five wise virgins went forth with oil in their torches.

J.S. It corresponds with the day star arising in the heart.

J.T. Quite so. That is mentioned in the second scripture read. It bears on what we have just been remarking. The allusion is to the darkest period in the history of the public body; that is, the Middle Ages, when things were very dark, and the Lord says, in regard to the overcomer, "I will give to him the morning star", Revelation 2:28. So the idea of Christ coming was already there in the Middle Ages, but it has been greatly augmented since. The revival, beginning about one hundred years ago, has stirred up affections and therefore there is more sensibility as to the coming of the Lord; yet one cannot fix dates.

C.A.M. Instincts really do not need a calendar.

J.T. You cannot put these things on a calendar. They are rather to be felt . The more we are in the living sense of belonging to the organism, the more sensitive we are that the time is near. It is even at the doors. It is really safer than an actual fixed time, because the sensibilities constitute you as ready for the Lord's return. The five wise virgins were ready as the midnight cry came; they had oil in their lamps and they went in with the bridegroom to the marriage.

H.H. The star is the hope of another day; not public recovery to Pentecost. It is to announce the coming of the Lord and not a sort of public return to Pentecostal conditions.

J.T. Yes; the removal of the candlestick is contemplated, hence another day of testimony is alluded to. A remnant is addressed and it is to hold fast what it had, "but what ye have hold fast till I shall come", (Revelation 2:25). The Lord says, "I do not cast upon you any other burden", (Revelation 2:24). We have the same remark to

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Philadelphia, but the thought of the crown is added: "I come quickly: hold fast what thou hast, that no one take thy crown", Revelation 3:11. The coming of the Lord is in prospect, and the word is to hold what you have; do not let it slip away, and then, let no one take your crown.

H.H. Would Samson's action in pulling up the doors of the gate at midnight fit in with the work of God in Thyatira? Then there are other features seen in the same chapter in Judges which all go through to the end.

J.T. Carrying the gate to Hebron would point to Colossians. It is the idea of power in view of another world, leading out of this one. Then later, Samson is in prison, which contemplates failure, but his hair begins to grow, which suggests recovery of life, having a remnant character, which leads to the world's overthrow. This power that has come in, in the way of life amongst the brethren, is the mark of the coming of the end. It brings down the world; it synchronises with the overthrow of the world. Judges 16:18 - 31.

W.R. Is that what is in mind in chapter 1 of this book? It says, "the time is near", Revelation 1:3.

J.T. The blessedness attached to the reading of the book would be in keeping with what it contains. In Judges 16 there is a great act of power at midnight. The gate is taken up and carried to the top of the mountain. Samson's public position was disgraceful, but there was power in what he did as rising up. It points to an act of Christ in the sense of power; what was in the mind of God before this world. Hebron represents this. Numbers 13:22. This world's gates are lifted out completely; its administrative power is overcome. The gates of hades do not prevail against the assembly, Matthew 16:18.

W.B-w. Is that why a harlot is mentioned in Judges 16, which has been referred to?

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J.T. It is the Thyatira position, I suppose, but later Samson is in prison, which is most distressing. He had given away the secret of his power. However, his hair begins to grow in the prison and from that point on, the world is doomed. In carrying away the doors of the gate of Gaza, the inhabitants were not destroyed, but the growth of the hair portends the overthrow of the world, because the Philistines all come down by the power of Samson. That is a most remarkable thing, and I believe it is touched on in this book.

J.S. Would you link the growth of the hair with the present time?

J.T. Yes; it is life brought in. Many of us know that in the revival of the last hundred years, the great prophetic position was made clear, and then the truth of Christ as Head of the assembly was brought out; and then the great thought of eternal life was made prominent. That is how these features of the testimony stand. Now it is a question of bringing down the world -- morally , of course, as regards the testimony. The bringing down of the world, as we have said, synchronises with the growth of the hair.

H.H. Despised by the religious world (for they made sport of the servant of God), but still, his service was effective. The little strength in Philadelphia would correspond to the hair growing.

J.T. It would, I am sure.

A.N.W. You spoke of life and the spiritual instincts existing in the organism. Can we not find ourselves in Philadelphia on both lines?

J.T. Yes. Nothing can be more interesting than to find out just where Philadelphia is and what it is to have part in it; not pretending to be it, but still able to say "by God's grace I am what I am", (1 Corinthians 15:10). It is well to be simple about things. As already mentioned, the order in which the truth has been developed in the last days is: the prophetic map; then Christ in

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the assembly, operating in that sphere and dwelling in the hearts of the saints; then eternal life, which brings in a subject state of things, corresponding with the growth of Samson's hair and synchronising with that, the moral overthrow of the world. "Who is he that gets the victory over the world, but he that believes that Jesus is the Son of God?" (1 John 5:5). So that there is victory over the world. This book shows that -- illustrated in what the Lord says to Philadelphia.

A.R. Showing, really, what progress has been made in the testimony since the truth of eternal life has been set out.

J.T. Quite so; eternal life has its place. When the Lord began to speak to His Father, as in John 17:1 - 3, He says, "glorify thy Son, that thy Son may glorify thee; as thou hast given him authority over all flesh, that as to all that thou hast given to him, he should give them life eternal. And this is the eternal life, that they should know thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent",. Now that is the general preface to His prayer to His Father. And He further says, "and now glorify me, thou Father, along with thyself, with the glory which I had along with thee before the world was", John 17:5. That is the finish of the preface, so to speak, because His deity is involved in that, that He is returning to glory, to have the same place that He had with the Father before the world was. And then He says, "I have manifested thy name to the men whom thou gavest me out of the world. They were thine, and thou gavest them me, and they have kept thy word", John 17:6. They were in his mind. I think from that point you get into the line of the Lord's thoughts as to what we are having now; the service of God; the heavenly calling; the glory that is given to Christ -- that the saints are to see His glory; the Father's love with which He loved the Son being in the saints and He in them. So it seems to me that from verse 6

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of John 17, we are in the sphere of the present time, where He is opening up for us the truth of the service of God and the heavenly calling, but eternal life must precede all that, though entering into it.

H.H. I suppose the out-of-the-world state in John 17 (although we are still in it literally) would be apart from the system of things around, with hearts true to Christ and moving in relation to Him, because eternal life is over against the vitiated religious atmosphere that there is around.

J.T. Yes, I think the order in which the truth has come out is remarkable, and I believe John 17 indicates it. The gospel of John is full of eternal life, yet He is pleased to tell His Father about it. "And this is the eternal life, that they should know thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent", John 17:3. That is what came out about fifty years ago, when eternal life was brought to the attention of the brethren. The thing is to see the hair growing a little bit. It has been a question of growth according to the light furnished. The truth of eternal life has been made plain, but there is need of our minds and affections being enlarged according to the light afforded. In truth "We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love the brethren", (1 John 3:14). If you are conscious of loving the brethren, you have concrete evidence of it.

C.A.M. Do you not think that its development awaited certain light about verse 5? The matter of what is inscrutable had to be clarified in the minds of the saints?

J.T. I have no doubt that is so. God has helped us on John 17:5 as over against the sonship of Christ. Verse 5 refers to His part in the Deity. He mentions His sonship in John 17:1. "Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son"; it is not 'glorify me', but "thy Son". In John 17:5, it is not "glorify thy Son", but "now

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glorify me , thou Father, along with thyself, with the glory which I had along with thee before the world was". That is one divine Person speaking to Another in regard of a pre-incarnate condition.

H.H. You have said, that in John 17:3, "the only true God" would stand over against idolatry; and that "Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent" would be the true Man and would stand over against lawlessness.

J.T. So the apostle Paul in meeting this matter of idolatry says, "yet to us there is one God, the Father",(1 Corinthians 8:6). He does not say simply that there is one God the Father and one Lord Jesus Christ, but he prefixes the words "to us". That is, it is a question of the persons in whom the truth is made known. That is not Christendom as it is. A heathen man going into Christendom is entitled to expect to find that in persons, but does he? Who is meant by the "us"? If they are not found, there will be no concrete idea at all of the true God. It is what is known in persons.

J.S. So the "us" would be those in whom the revelation was made known?

J.T. It is made good in them. There are two thoughts. The first is, "No one has seen God at any time; the only-begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him". (John 1:18). That is a remarkable expression; not saying that the declaration is to anyone, for it is due to God that the declaration should be in that public universal way. That is for any one, but then the other thing is the word "revelation". There is nothing said about revealing the Son. The Lord says, "no one knows the Son but the Father, nor does any one know the Father, but the Son, and he to whom the Son may be pleased to reveal him", (Matthew 11:27). There is a person to whom the revelation is made; find that person, and you will get some idea of the one God; that is, it is not a matter of theology, it is the state of the person to whom the revelation is made. From

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such persons you get some idea of the thing concretely, and that is what Paul means when he says, "to us there is one God" (1 Corinthians 8:6) -- it is not merely that there is but one God, but to us there is one God. It is real Christianity. If you know those who are genuine, you have some idea of the one true God.

W.B-w. Do you mean that the "he to whom the Son may be pleased to reveal him" (Matthew 11:27) is representative of the persons of whom you have been speaking?

J.T. That is what I mean. In such persons you get some true idea of God.

J.H.E. Would you say that Peter and John were like this in Acts 3? They said, "Look on us".

J.T. Exactly; they were concrete representations of what the lame man needed to see.

J.S. Would revelation be private in character, and declaration more public?

J.T. I think so. Declaration is a general thought, The scripture says, "No one has seen God at any time; the only-begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him", (John 1:18). That declaration is for anyone, but the work of God is needed for the appreciation of it, which John presents. In 1 Timothy 2:5 we have the testimony that "God is one, and the mediator of God and men one, the man Christ Jesus", but if you want to get the thing concretely, you must get the persons who have the revelation.

H.H. Each of the Persons has part in Deity, but Christianity presents the one God in the Father, and Christ and the Spirit are seen as moving in relation to Him.

J.T. Quite so; we are baptised "to the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit", (Matthew 28:19). The apostle says, "For and if indeed there are those called gods ... (as there are gods many, and lords many,) yet to us there is one God, the Father ... and we for him (1 Corinthians 8:5,6)". That is God. And then there is one Lord,

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who is He? "Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by him". 1 Corinthians 8:6. That brings up the whole question of the persons who are for the Father, and who has brought them in? How did it come about? Christ has effected it -- "we by him". It is a concrete thought; Christianity is not simply theories, not even what is written, but real persons to whom the revelation is made good.

A.R. Such persons are like Samson, over against the idolatrous condition that existed. The Philistines said, "Our god has given Samson our enemy into our hands", (Judges 16:23). But he brought the whole system down, did he not?

J.T. That is right; the world of idolatry was brought down by the man who was alive, whose hair began to grow, which is a clear symbol of life.

A.P.T. Would John's line run concurrently with what is before us? At the close of his first epistle, he says, "Children, keep yourselves from idols", 1 John 5:21. Previously he had spoken of the Son of God having "given us an understanding", 1 John 5:20.

J.T. Yes. He also said of Christ, "He is the true God and eternal life", 1 John 5:20. In the period of the controversy concerning eternal life, the opposers said that eternal life is a Person. Really, it was derogatory to Christ, because they made the title of a thing the title of a divine Person; whereas the answer is that He is more than that; He is a divine Person -- the true God.

C.A.M. That He is the true God is the great and glorious answer to any derogatory remarks, and the Lord has helped us to get to that; to get the idea of Deity as in Him. Sonship is the relation in which He stands to God as Man, but personally. He is God and He never ceases to be God.

H.H. Eternal life can be shared with the saints, but Deity can not.

J.T. Quite so; this brings us back to what has been

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said of the "little power" in Philadelphia, which runs parallel with the idea of life.

J.S. Over against Philadelphia, where we have the power of life seen in a little strength, is the worldly system exposed to us in Laodicea, so that we may be completely delivered from it?

J.T. The Lord's promise to Philadelphia should be noted: "Behold, I make them of the synagogue of Satan who say that they are Jews, and are not, but lie; behold, I will cause that they shall come and shall do homage before thy feet, and shall know that I have loved thee", Revelation 3:9. He thus honours the assembly possessed of the qualities He describes, and of course he urges us in this way to develop those qualities. The Lord speaks to Philadelphia as having a little strength, and keeping His word and not denying His name, and that introduces finality: "I come quickly". His affections are in that word "quickly".

A.R. Would the name "Philadelphia", meaning brotherly love, suggest that love is operating amongst the saints and the Lord loves these conditions?

J.T. Yes; and what He says to the overcomer implies that He understands: "He that overcomes, him will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more at all out; and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven, from my God, and my new name", Revelation 3:12. You must have persons for Christianity. This verse opens up that in which the Lord has been instructing His people -- "my Father, and your Father, ... my God, and your God", (John 20:17). So that we are on a high level in this address, and the Lord says, "hold fast what thou hast, that no one take thy crown (Revelation 3:11)". It is needful for us to understand what this crown is.

A.N.W. Would the crown be our appreciation of divine Persons?

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J.T. I would think so; the Lord has graciously helped His people as to Deity, especially the relations into which divine Persons have come in view of revelation. We must not let the truth slip; Let no one take thy crown. What can that be but Christ as known in the wonderful economy of the present dispensation?

A.B.P. Would the writing of "the name of the city of my God, new Jerusalem (Revelation 3:12)", upon the overcomer, suggest that there is now a moral conformity to what is coming out in display, and that the Lord will claim that?

J.T. It seems that the overcomer is regarded by the Lord as understanding these things. Ask the average Christian what he understands by "a pillar in the temple of my God", and "the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem"; and again, Christ's "new name(Revelation 3:12)". How many of us understand? If we do not know what these things mean, we shall hardly value what the Lord is promising here as distinction for the overcomer.

H.H. We have to be morally out of Babylon to know anything as to the city that comes down from God out of heaven.

W.B-w. Is there a connection with the writing in 2 Corinthians 3 and this writing in Revelation 3?

J.T. The verses you refer to read, "Ye are our letter, written in our hearts, known and read of all men, being manifested to be Christ's epistle ministered by us, written, not with ink, but the Spirit of the living God; not on stone tables, but on fleshy tables of the heart", 2 Corinthians 3:2,3. The first writing, "written in our hearts", refers to himself, meaning that he loved the Corinthians; that is, it was like his letter of commendation -- he spoke so well about them -- they were first in his heart. He would speak to any brother he met about this wonderful work at Corinth, but then he turns it round and says, "being manifested to be Christ's epistle (2 Corinthians 3:3)". They were his letter, in the sense that they were in his heart, but they were Christ's epistle, as he says, "Christ's epistle

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ministered by us(2 Corinthians 3:3)". His ministry had produced that effect -- Christ's epistle written in their hearts. We are to be capable as Christians of taking on divine impressions through the Spirit of God -- it is written on our hearts in that way. So that we take on impressions from Christ; we are like Him. In Revelation 3:12, we have, "and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven, from my God, and my new name". What can be more interesting than that the Lord can take up a Christian and write on him externally -- not simply internally -- because that may be denied by what is external. This refers to state; what is external is equal to what is internal; that one is so entirely free from worldly consideration that the Lord can use him as material to write upon.

J.H.E. Would that be seen in Antioch? The disciples were first called Christians in Antioch.

J.T. Yes. It is not an ordinary word. The word called there has an oracular significance. It seems that God -- directly or indirectly -- caused that the disciples should be known by this significant appellation, identifying them with their Master.

W.B-w. That is, the outward entirely corresponds with the inward.

J.T. That is the idea. The disciples were called what they were .

H.H. The "fleshy tables of the heart" (2 Corinthians 3:3) is that which can carry the writing.

J.T. Yes; fleshy tables of the heart are impressionable as over against "stone tables". It is the inward work of God. The external is striking because it is the side that is presented in the heavenly city -- that is public.

J.S. Will the external side, in Revelation, be in the sense of representation?

J.T. Well, I thought that. Think of a man walking down the street with these things written on him. I am

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speaking figuratively, of course. He has the name of Christ and the name of His God written on him. Name is renown; it is a tribute to the period of Philadelphia that the overcomer in that assembly is capable of having such great names written on him. In Leviticus 24, one is said to have blasphemed the Name, whereas here the name of Christ's God is written upon the overcomer in Philadelphia. Jehovah's name was to be put on the children of Israel. Aaron was directed to bless Israel: "Jehovah bless thee, and keep thee; Jehovah make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee; Jehovah lift up his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace. And they shall put my name upon the children of Israel; and I will bless them", (Numbers 6:24 - 27). It is on a blessed people, evidently through the state of Nazariteship, as the chapter indicates. And I believe that is what is in mind in Revelation 3:12; such material that a divine Name can be written thereon -- "the name of my God", the Lord says.

J.S. Would there be moral order here? The city is referred to next.

J.T. I think so. You can see how we are ready to be in the heavenly city, if we are externally equal to divine writing, because the external side is presented in the heavenly city.

H.H. Philadelphian conditions, as found among the saints, afford a very suitable opportunity for the coming in of Christ now. If the conditions are there, the man "carrying a pitcher of water", (Mark 14:13), would still direct one in a difficult day like this to where there are conditions into which the Lord can come.

J.T. Quite so. You feel that this has been in mind from the outset of the revival, that there should be external conditions that Christ can write upon; that He can make certain persons certain things.

W.B-w. Would being a pillar in the temple come in by way of Nazariteship?

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J.T. Jehovah's name was put upon Israel in relation to the Nazarite; that is, it is Christ blessing His people as in the light of Nazariteship. I think it may be introduced into what we have here. There is a state secured that conveys the truth that has been brought out. That is what is meant, I think. The Lord is honouring Philadelphia in that He is speaking to the overcomer in this way.

J.T.Jr. I was wondering about the four men in the book of Daniel. New names were put upon them. Would that illustrate how the world would seek to put false names on that which is truly of Christ? The Hebrew children were named according to the names of the gods of Babylon.

J.T. That brings up an interesting point. In spite of what the world may call us, we are to remain ourselves . What they call us is not to alter us. "I am what I am (1 Corinthians 15:10)". Those four men retained what they were and would not defile themselves.

J.T.Jr. Was it not really over against God's name? God had said, "they shall put my name upon the children of Israel", (Numbers 6:27), but the prince of this world would say, I will put my name on them.

A.B.P. Does not that develop later in the mark of the beast?

J.T. Yes; the effort will be to put the beast's name, or the number of his name, on all.

A.R. Does this writing suggest that we are holding the truth not merely abstractly, but vitally in our souls and it thus can be seen publicly?

J.T. Quite so; and that brings out what the saints are, as has been remarked. Peter says, "Look on us". The truth was there in Peter and John, and so now at the end, the Lord, I believe, would bring out such external appearances amongst us that He can use to indicate what the truth is that has brought about this condition.

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A.N.W. Something like the name of the city, according to Ezekiel? The name of the city is Jehovah-Shammah, meaning, "Jehovah is there".

J.T. Quite so; that comes in very fittingly. The Lord has helped His people and will help them so that they will be available for this writing.

J.S. So you have, in accord with this writing, the city coming "down out of heaven, from my God (Revelation 3:12)". In the end of the book it is thus seen all glorious.

J.T. As the saints are formed by the light and instruction divinely furnished, they are ready for this public display. It is not what is inward. It is the public position that is in mind.

S.F. What would the "new name" be?

J.T. It is a test to us, for it is a question of God's secret; what we have come into, I believe, in relation to the Lord's supper and all the spiritual thoughts that He is developing. I believe that is what is in mind. It is different and in contrast to what is current religiously in a public sense.

H.H. The Lord has furnished the saints with a fuller measure of intelligence as to His Person, especially His sonship. I think that is a part of the new name.

J.T. It is likely, too, that the pressure that has come upon us -- upon the world also, but peculiarly upon the saints -- is to develop the truth in us. Pressure enlarges us. Psalm 4:1. The Lord intends to make real what He has been ministering to His people, that they should be exponents of it. The recurrence of the words, "my God", in our passage is to be noted. He says, "him will I make a pillar in the temple of my God ... . and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven, from my God, and my new name (Revelation 3:12)". It brings out what we are in relation to Him according to John 20:17 -- "my Father, and your Father,

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... my God, and your God". And then "my new name" would evidently fit in there.

A.P.T. Is not the service of the Holy Spirit in regard to all this very touching? In all these addresses the Lord says, "He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the assemblies (Revelation 3:13)".

J.T. Whatever has come to us from the outset that is of God has been by the Spirit; but in view of the displacement of the Spirit in the public body. His speaking is stressed in the addresses to the assemblies. Traditional teaching ignores Him. Sometimes there are those who say, I do not go with that, just because it was not said earlier. Still it may be needed as present truth - what the Spirit is saying. That attitude of mind is met by the repeated words of Christ here, "He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the assemblies"(Revelation 3:13) -- not what He has said, but what He is saying. Of course, the saints are not to accept everything they hear, but an exercised ear will discern the Spirit's voice; and then we are enjoined to "prove all things, hold fast the right", (1 Thessalonians 5:21). The Bereans were noble, "receiving the word with all readiness of mind, daily searching the scriptures if these things were so", (Acts 17:11).

W.B-w. Referring again to "the city of my God, the new Jerusalem", (Revelation 3:12) do you think we would be helped in administration locally if we were in the good of these names? The name of the city is "the new Jerusalem". It would help us in administration if we are in accord with that.

J.T. Yes; it is remarkable how much has come out as to administration, because the word city peculiarly has that in mind; and the gates, too. The gates of Gaza taken up by Samson would mean that the power of the world's administration religiously was nullified; administration in the public body is largely patterned on worldly principles, but Samson broke that up and then he brought the world down. In type, the whole thing is

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brought down by him in the pulling down of the pillars that supported the Philistine house.

The word new is important. New Jerusalem refers to what the saints are; what has been effected in them, which is attested in the city in chapter 21.

W.R. Did the Lord have that in mind when He referred to Jerusalem as the city of the great king?

J.T. I have no doubt that is so. Jerusalem took on a new name in the administration of the apostles; so Paul says, "but the Jerusalem above is free, which is our mother", (Galatians 4:26). That certainly is a new thought. New Jerusalem and "my" new name stand together as truth -- over against the oldness of Christendom, as marked by worldly principles and ways. The thought of what is new begins in the teaching of Romans 12:2 -- "by the renewing of your mind". It is the same word; to bring out what is new or different to anything that has preceded. The Christian's mind is different: "renewed into ... knowledge", (Colossians 3:10); the new man is thus different in his knowledge. Then the "renewal of the Holy Spirit", (Titus 3:5). All this is calculated to help us to follow the line of the word new, and reach the final thought as applied to Christ's name.

A.R. Would you say something about "He that overcomes, to him will I give to sit with me in my throne; as I also have overcome, and have sat down with my Father in his throne", verse 21.

J.T. It carries us on to the change of dispensation, as does the allusion here to the Lord's coming to the assemblies, that is, leaving His Father's throne and taking His own throne. He is on His Father's throne now, which is grace, but the overcomer is carried on into the coming dispensation, when he will sit with Him on His throne in the millennium.

A.B.P. The overcomer would value that as loving His appearing?

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J.T. Quite so. He had said to the remnant in Thyatira, "he that keeps unto the end my works" -- notice that it says to the end, because we are getting through -- "to him will I give authority over the nations, and he shall shepherd them with an iron rod; as vessels of pottery are they broken in pieces, as I also have received from my Father; and I will give to him the morning star", Revelation 2:26 - 28. He does not say that the overcomer in Thyatira will sit with Him in His throne. He gives him authority over the nations if he carries on until the end; meaning that Jezebel was ruling Christendom then, and the saints were suffering, of course, but the suffering saints will then rule with an iron rod, but with the spirit of shepherding, which is very different from Jezebel. The last promise, which is made to the overcomer in Laodicea, is "to him will I give to sit with me in my throne".

F.S.C. Is the crown being held for that? It says, "that no one take thy crown (Revelation 3:11)".

J.T. I think that is right. He Himself, I am sure, is our crown. What is the crown to a lover of Christ but Christ Himself? Christ as known in these circumstances. What an honour to sit with Him in His throne! Correspondence with Him is the point: as He has sat down with His Father in His throne, we sit with Christ in His throne.

A.P.T. The word also is to be noted in that verse. "I also have overcome", the Lord says.