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Elpis Israel
by Dr. John Thomas

Instead of being a by-word and a reproach, as at this day, the Gentiles will glory in their patronage; for "in those days it shall come to pass that ten men shall take hold out of all the languages of the nations, even shall take hold of the skirt of him that is a Jew, saying, We will go with you; for we have heard that God is with you".

Yes, the kingdom, and throne of David will then be in their midst again, and Christ the Lord God, and Holy One of Israel, sitting upon it in power and great glory.

The gospel of the kingdom will be no longer a matter of hope, but a reality; and those who have believed it, and submitted cheerfully and lovingly to the law of faith in the obedience it requires, and have perfected their faith by works meet for repentance, will be shining "as the brightness of the firmament and as the stars for ever and ever," This is the Hope of Israel which is set before men in the Gospel, and for which Paul was bound with a chain.

It is a very different one from that exhibited in pulpit-theology; yet it is that which must be embraced as the soul's anchorage, if a man would be saved, and inherit the Kingdom of God.

Such will be the order of things for a thousand years.

But though truth and righteousness will have gained the ascendancy and have prevailed for so long a period, sin will still exist in the flesh, and in some instances reveal itself in overt acts of disobedience.

This is implied by the sayings: "The sinner shall die accursed;" and, "Whoso will not come up of all the families of the earth unto Jerusalem to worship the King, the Lord of Hosts, even upon them shall be no rain".

There will be no occasion to march an army into a country to put down rebellion; it will be quite effectual,to bring it back to its allegiance, to withhold from it the fruits of the earth.

This spirit of insubordination will, however, smoulder among the nations until at the end of the thousand years the "enmity" against the Womans Seed bursts forth again into a flame.

If the apostle felt the workings

of "the law of sin" within him, through obedient to "the law of the spirit of life"; need we wonder that the same "law of nature" should gather force in the hearts of nations subdued by fire and sword to the sovereignty of Israel's King?

Man, unrenewed man, is essentially ungrateful and rebellious.

The whole history of his race attests it.

A thousand years of peace and blessedness will fail to bind him, by the bonds of love and a willing fealty, to the glorious and benevolent, yet just and powerful, emancipator and enlightener of the world.

Some new demon, who would rather reign as Satan than serve in heaven, will arise among the nations, and unfurl the old satanic standard of the Dragon empire, which will be known to the generation of that remote future as the past existence of the Assyrian, Persian, Macedonian, and Roman empires is known to us; that is, historically.

A giant will this rebel be in presumption and crime, and surpassing in hardihood the pre-millennial Autocrat, whom Michael bound with a great chain and cast into the abyss.

But what will not a man adventure inspired with the pride of life!

Enchanted thus, he becomes the Adversary (Satan) of the King of Glory; and goes forth to the remotest nations, to Gogue's Magogian people, and falsely accuses his administration, by which means he succeeds in detaching them from their allegiance, and in deceiving them into a vain attempt to recover their ancient dominion.

The King, instead of nipping the insurrection in the bud, permits the Adversary and Seducer (the Satan and the Devil) to mature his plans, marshal his hosts, and lead them on to an invasion of the land of Israel.

The King permits him to come up on "the breadth of the land," and to "compass the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city".

Having enclosed the Governor of the world and his ancients in the metropolis, and so hemmed them in as to prevent all escape, with no army in the rear to raise the siege, the sceptre of universal dominion would seem once more to be within the grasp of the Head of the Old Serpent empire.

Like our contemporaries, professing to believe the past, but denying that its scenes will ever be repeated, he remembers the overthrow of the former Gogue, as the Autocrat of Russia now remembers that of Sennacherib in the days of Hezekiah, but believes not in the repetition of so terrible a destruction.

[Zeph.iii.7. Isaiah ii.3. Zeph.iii.19,20. Mal.iii.12. Zech.viii.23. Dan.xiii.3. Isaiah lxv.20. Zech.xvi.16-19.]