The Great Controversy
Between Christ & His Angels & Satan & his Angels
An easy to read and fast moving panorama of the Story of Redemption!
I saw the rapping delusion. Satan has power to bring the appearance of forms before us purporting to be our relatives and friends that now sleep in Jesus. It will be made to appear as if they were present, the words they uttered while here, which we were familiar with, will be spoken, and the same tone of voice which they had while living will fall upon the ear. All this is to deceive the world, and ensnare them into the belief of this delusion.
I saw that the saints must have a thorough understanding of the present truth, which they will have to maintain from the Scriptures. They must understand the state of the dead; for the spirits of devils will yet appear to them, professing to be beloved friends and relatives, who will declare to them unscriptural doctrines. They will do all in their power to excite sympathy, and work miracles before them, to confirm what they declare. The people of God must be prepared to withstand these spirits with the Bible truth that the dead know not anything, and that they are the spirits of devils.
I saw that we must examine well the foundation of our hope, for we shall have to give a reason for it from the Scriptures; for we shall see this delusion spreading, and we shall have to contend with it face to face. And unless we are prepared for it, we shall be ensnared and overcome. But if we do what we can on our part to be ready for the conflict that is just before us, God will do his part, and his all-powerful arm will protect us. He would sooner send every angel out of glory to make a hedge about faithful souls, than that they should be deceived and led away by the lying wonders of Satan.
I saw the rapidity with which this delusion was spreading. A train of cars was shown me, going with the speed of lightning. The angel bade me look carefully. I fixed my eyes upon the train. It seemed that the whole world was on board. Then he showed me the conductor, who looked like a stately fair person, whom all the passengers looked up to and reverenced. I was perplexed, and asked my attending angel who it was. Said he, It is Satan. He is the conductor in the form of an angel of light. He has taken the world captive. They are given over to strong delusions, to believe a lie that they may be damned. His agent, the next highest in order to him, is the engineer, and others of his agents are employed in different offices as he may need them, and they are all going with lightning speed to perdition. I asked the angel if there were none left. He bade me look in an opposite direction, and I saw a little company traveling a narrow pathway. All seemed to be firmly united, and bound together by the truth.
This little company looked care-worn, as though they had passed through severe trials and conflicts. And it seemed as if the sun had just appeared from behind the cloud, and shone upon their countenances, and caused them to look triumphant, as though their victories were nearly won.
I saw that the Lord had given the world opportunity to discover the snare. This one thing was evidence enough for the Christian if there were no other. There is no difference made between the precious and the vile.
Thomas Paine, whose body has mouldered to dust, and who is to be called forth at the end of the 1000 years, at the second resurrection, to receive his reward, and suffer the second death, is purported by Satan to be in heaven, and highly exalted there. Satan used him on earth as long as he could, and now he is carrying on the same work through pretensions of having Thomas Paine so much exalted and honored; and as he taught on earth, Satan is making it appear that he is teaching in heaven. And some on earth who have looked with horror at his life and death, and his corrupt teachings while living, now submit to be taught by him who was one of the vilest and most corrupt of men; one who despised God and his law.
He who is the father of lies, blinds and deceives the world by sending his angels forth to speak for apostles, and make it appear that they contradict what they wrote when on earth, which was dictated by the Holy Ghost. These lying angels make the apostles to corrupt their own teachings and declare them to be adulterated. By so doing he can throw professed Christians, who have a name to live and are dead, and all the world, into uncertainty about the word of God; for that cuts directly across his track, and is likely to thwart his plans. Therefore he gets them to doubt the divine origin of the Bible, and then sets up the infidel Thomas Paine, as though he was ushered into heaven when he died, and with the holy apostles whom he hated on earth, is united, and appears to be teaching the world.
Satan assigns each one of his angels their part to act. He enjoins upon them to be cunning, artful and sly. He instructs some of them to act the part of the apostles, and speak for them, while others are to act out infidels and wicked men who died cursing God, but now appear to be very religious. There is no difference made between the most holy apostles and the vilest infidel. They are both made to teach the same thing. It matters not who Satan makes to speak, if his object is only accomplished. He was so intimately connected with Paine upon earth, and so aided him, that it is an easy thing for him to know the very words he used, and the very hand-writing of one of his devoted children who served him so faithfully, and accomplished his purposes so well. Satan dictated much of his writings, and it is an easy thing for him to dictate sentiments through his angels now, and make it appear that it comes through Thomas Paine, who was his devoted servant while he lived. But this is the masterpiece of Satan. All this teaching purporting to be from apostles, and saints, and wicked men who have died, comes directly from his Satanic majesty.
This should be enough to remove the vail from every mind and discover unto all the dark, mysterious works of Satan;--that he has got one whom he loved so well, and who hated God so perfectly, with the holy apostles and angels in glory: virtually saying to the world and infidels, No matter how wicked you are; no matter whether you believe in God or the Bible, or disbelieve; live as you please, heaven is your home; -- for everyone knows that if Thomas Paine is in heaven, and so exalted, they will surely get there. This is so glaring that all may see if they will. Satan is doing now what he has been trying to do since his fall, through individuals like Thomas Paine. He is, through his power and lying wonders, tearing away the foundation of the Christians' hope, and putting out their sun that is to lighten them in the narrow way to heaven. He is making the world believe that the Bible is no better than a story-book, uninspired, while he holds out something to take its place; namely, Spiritual Manifestations!
Here is a channel wholly devoted to himself, under his control, and he can make the world believe what he will. The Book that is to judge him and his followers, he puts back into the shade, just where he wants it. The Saviour of the world he makes to be no more than a common man; and as the Roman guard that watched the tomb of Jesus, spread the false and lying report that the chief priests and elders put in their mouth, so will the poor, deluded followers of these pretended spiritual manifestations, repeat, and try to make it appear, that there is nothing miraculous about our Saviour's birth, death and resurrection; and they put Jesus with the Bible, back into the shade, where they want him, and then get the world to look to them and their lying wonders and miracles, which they declare far exceed the works of Christ. Thus the world is taken in the snare, and lulled to security; not to find out their awful deception, until the seven last plagues are poured out. Satan laughs as he sees his plan succeed so well, and the whole world in the snare.
See Revelation 16:14, 18:2.
I saw Satan and his angels consulting together. He bade his angels go and lay their snares especially for those who were looking for Christ's second appearing, and who were keeping all God's commandments. Satan told his angels that the churches were all asleep. He would increase his power and lying wonders, and he could hold them. But the sect of Sabbath-keepers we hate. They are continually working against us, and taking from us our subjects, to keep that hated law of God.
Go, make the possessors of lands and money drunk with cares. If you can make them place their affections upon these things, we have them yet. They may profess what they please, only make them care more for money than the success of Christ's kingdom, or the spread of the truths we hate. Present the world before them in the most attractive light, that they may love and idolize it. We must keep all the means in our ranks we can. The more means they have, the more wi1l they injure our kingdom by getting our subjects. And as they appoint meetings in different places, then we are in danger. Be very vigilant then. Cause all the distraction you can. Destroy love for each other. Discourage and dishearten their ministers; for we hate them. Hold up every plausible excuse to those that have means, lest they hand it out. Control the money matters if you can, and drive their ministers to want, and distress. This will weaken their courage and zeal. Battle every inch of ground. Make covetousness and love of earthly treasures the ruling traits of their character. As long as these traits rule, salvation and grace stand back. Crowd all you can around them to attract them, and they will be surely ours. Not only are we sure of them, but their hateful influence will not be exercised toward others to lead them to heaven. And those who shall attempt to give, put within them a grudging disposition, that it may be sparingly.
I saw that Satan carried out his plans well. And as the servants of God appointed meetings, Satan and his angels understood their business, and were on the ground to hinder the work of God, and he was constantly putting suggestions into the minds of God's people. Some he leads in one way, and some in another, always taking advantage of evil traits in the brethren and sisters, exciting and stirring up their natural besetments. If they are disposed to be selfish and covetous, Satan is well pleased to take his stand by their side, and then with all his power he seeks to lead them to manifest their besetting sins. If the grace of God and the light of truth melt away these covetous, selfish feelings for a little, and they do not obtain entire victory over them, when they are not under a saving influence, Satan comes in and withers up every noble, generous principle, and they think that they have to do too much. They become weary of well-doing and forget all about the great sacrifice Jesus made for them, to redeem them from the power of Satan, and hopeless misery.
Satan took advantage of Judas' covetous, selfish disposition, and led him to murmur against the ointment Mary dedicated to Jesus. Judas looked upon it as a great waste; it might have been sold and given to the poor. He cared not for the poor, but considered the liberal offering to Jesus extravagant. Judas prized his Lord just enough to sell him for a few pieces of silver. And I saw that there were some like Judas among those who profess to be waiting for their Lord. Satan has the control over them, but they know it not. Not a particle of covetousness or selfishness can God approbate. He hates it, and he despises the prayers and exhortations of those who possess it. As Satan sees his time is short, he leads them on to be more and more selfish, more and more covetous, and then exults as he sees them wrapt up in themselves, close, penurious and selfish. If the eyes of such could be opened, they would see Satan in hellish triumph, exulting over them, and laughing at the folly of those who accept his suggestions, and enter his snares. Then he and his angels take the mean and covetous acts of these individuals, and present them to Jesus and the holy angels, and reproachfully say, These are Christ's followers! They are getting ready to be translated! Satan marks their deviating course, and then compares it with the Bible, with passages which plainly rebuke such things, and then presents it to annoy the heavenly angels, saying, These are following Christ and his word! These are the fruits of Christ's sacrifice and redemption! Angels turn in disgust from the scene. God requires a constant doing on the part of his people, and when they become weary of well and generous doing, he becomes weary of them. I saw that God was greatly displeased with the least manifestation of selfishness on the part of his professed people, for whom Jesus has not spared his own precious life. Every selfish, covetous individual will fall out by the way. Like Judas, who sold his Lord, they will sell good principles, and a noble, generous disposition for a little of earth's gain. All such will be sifted out from God's people. Those who want heaven, must, with every energy they possess, be encouraging the principles of heaven. And instead of their souls withering up with selfishness, they should be expanding with benevolence, and every opportunity should be improved in doing good to one another, and increasing and growing more and more into the principles of heaven. Jesus was held up to me as the perfect pattern. His life was without selfish interest, and was marked with disinterested benevolence.
See I John 2:15; Luke 12:15; Col. 3:5,6
I saw some with strong faith and agonizing cries, pleading with God. Their countenances were pale, and marked with deep anxiety, which expressed their internal struggle. There were firmness and great earnestness expressed in their countenances, while large drops of perspiration rose upon their foreheads, and fell. Now and then their faces would light up with the marks of God's approbation, and again the same solemn, earnest, anxious look settled upon them.
Evil angels crowded around them, pressing their darkness upon them, to shut out Jesus from their view, that their eyes might be drawn to the darkness that surrounded them, and they distrust God, and next murmur against him. Their only safety was in keeping their eyes directed upward. Angels were having the charge over the people of God, and as the poisonous atmosphere from these evil angels was pressed around these anxious ones, the angels, which had the charge over them, were continually wafting their wings over them to scatter the thick darkness that surrounded them.
Some, I saw, did not participate in this work of agonizing and pleading. They seemed indifferent and careless. They were not resisting the darkness around them, and it shut them in like a thick cloud. The angels of God left them, and went to the aid of those earnest, praying ones. I saw the angels of God hasten to the assistance of all those who were struggling with all their energies to resist those evil angels, and trying to help themselves by calling upon God with perseverance. But the angels left those who made no effort to help themselves, and I lost sight of them.
As these praying ones continued their earnest cries, at times a ray of light from Jesus came to them, and encouraged their hearts, and lighted up their countenances.
I asked the meaning of the shaking I had seen. I was shown that it would be caused by the straight testimony called forth by the counsel of the true Witness to the Laodiceans. It will have its effect upon the heart of the receiver of the testimony, and it will lead him to exalt the standard and pour forth the straight truth. This straight testimony some will not bear. They will rise up against it, and this will cause a shaking among God's people.
I saw that the testimony of the True Witness has not been half heeded. The solemn testimony upon which the destiny of the church hangs, has been lightly esteemed, if not entirely disregarded. This testimony must work deep repentance, and all that truly receive it, will obey it, and be purified.
Said the angel, List ye! Soon I heard a voice that sounded like many musical instruments, all sounding in perfect strains, sweet and harmonious. It surpassed any music I had ever heard. It seemed to be so full of mercy, compassion, and elevating, holy joy. It thrilled through my whole being. Said the angel, Look ye! My attention was then turned to the company I had seen before, who were mightily shaken. I was shown those whom I had before seen weeping, and praying with agony of spirit. I saw that the company of guardian angels around them had doubled, and they were clothed with an armor from their head to their feet. They moved in exact order, firm like a company of soldiers. Their countenances expressed the severe conflict which they had endured, the agonizing struggle they had passed through. Yet their features, marked with severe internal anguish, shone now with the light and glory of heaven. They had obtained the victory, and it called forth from them the deepest gratitude, and holy, sacred joy.
The numbers of this company had lessened. Some had been shaken out, and left by the way. The careless and indifferent who did not join with those who prized victory and salvation enough to agonize, persevere, and plead for it, did not obtain it, and they were left behind in darkness, and their numbers were immediately made up by others taking hold of the truth, and coming into the ranks. Still the evil angels pressed around them, but they could have no power over them.
I heard those clothed with the armor speak forth the truth in great power. It had effect. I saw those who had been bound; some wives had been bound by their husbands, and some children had been bound by their parents. The honest who had been held or prevented from hearing the truth, now eagerly laid hold of the truth spoken. All fear of their relatives was gone. The truth alone was exalted to them. It was dearer and more precious than life. They had been hungering and thirsting for truth. I asked what had made this great change. An angel answered, It is the latter rain; the refreshing from the presence of the Lord; the loud cry of the third angel.
Great power was with these chosen ones. Said the angel, Look ye! My attention was turned to the wicked, or unbelievers. They were all astir. The zeal and power with the people of God had aroused and enraged them. Confusion, confusion, was on every side. I saw measures taken against this company, who were having the power and light of God. Darkness thickened around them, yet there they stood, approved of God, and trusting in him. I saw them perplexed. Next I heard them crying unto God earnestly. Through the day and night their cry ceased not. I heard these words, Thy will, O God, be done! If it can glorify thy name, make a way of escape for thy people! Deliver us from the heathen round about us! They have appointed us unto death; but thine arm can bring salvation. These are all the words I can bring to mind. They seemed to have a deep sense of their unworthiness, and manifested entire submission to the will of God, Yet everyone, without an exception, was earnestly pleading, and wrestling like Jacob for deliverance.
Soon after they had commenced their earnest cry, the angels, in sympathy would have gone to their deliverance. But a tall, commanding angel suffered them not. Said he, The will of God is not yet fulfilled. They must drink of the cup. They must be baptized with the baptism.
Soon I heard the voice of God, which shook the heavens and the earth. There was a mighty earthquake. Buildings were shaken down, and fell on every side. I then heard a triumphant shout of victory, loud, musical and clear. I looked upon this company who, a short time before were in such distress and bondage. Their captivity was turned. A glorious light shone upon them. How beautiful they then looked. All weariness and marks of care were gone. Health and beauty were seen in every counte-nance. Their enemies, the heathen around them, fell like dead men. They could not endure the light that shone upon the delivered, holy ones. This light and glory remained upon them, until Jesus was seen in the clouds of heaven, and the faithful, tried company was changed in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, from glory to glory. And the graves were opened and the saints came forth, clothed with immortality, crying victory over death and the grave, and together with the living saints, were caught up to meet their Lord in the air; while the rich, musical shouts of glory and victory were upon every immortal tongue, and proceeding from every sanctified, holy lip.
See Joel 2:12-17; Zechariah 12:10; Revelation 1:5.
I saw the state of the different churches since the second angel proclaimed their fall. They have been growing more and more corrupt; yet they bear the name of being Christ's followers. It is impossible to distinguish them from the world. Their ministers take their text from the Word, but preach smooth things. The natural heart feels no objection to this. It is only the spirit and power of the truth, and the salvation of Christ, that is hateful to the carnal heart. There is nothing in the popular ministry that stirs the wrath of Satan, makes the sinner tremble, or applies to the heart and conscience the fearful realities of a judgment soon to come. Wicked men are generally pleased with a form without true godliness, and they will aid and support such a religion. Said the angel, Nothing less than the whole armor of righteousness can overcome, and retain the victory over the powers of darkness. Satan has taken full possession of the churches as a body. The sayings and doings of men are dwelt upon instead of the plain cutting truths of the word of God. Said the angel, The friendship and spirit of the world are at enmity with God. When truth in its simplicity and strength, as it is in Jesus, is brought to bear against the spirit of the world, it awakens the spirit of persecution at once. Many, very many, who profess to be Christians, have not known God. The character of the natural heart has not been changed, and the carnal mind remains at enmity with God. They are Satan's own faithful servants, notwithstanding they have assumed another name.
I saw that since Jesus had left the Holy place of the heavenly Sanctuary, and had entered within the second vail, the churches were left as were the Jews; and they have been filling up with every unclean and hateful bird. I saw great iniquity and vileness in the churches; yet they profess to be Christians. Their profession, their prayers and their exhortations, are an abomination in the sight of God. Said the angel, God will not smell in their assemblies. Selfishness, fraud and deceit are practiced by them without the reprovings of conscience. And over all these evil traits they throw the cloak of religion. I was shown the pride of the nominal churches. God was not in their thoughts; but their carnal minds dwell upon themselves. They decorate their poor mortal bodies, and then look upon themselves with satisfaction and pleasure. Jesus and the angels looked upon them in anger. Said the angel, Their sins and pride have reached unto heaven. Their portion is prepared. Justice and judgment have slumbered long, but will soon awake. Vengeance is mine, and I will repay, saith the Lord. The fearful threatenings of the third angel are to be realized, and they will drink the wrath of God. An innumerable host of evil angels are spreading themselves over the whole land. The churches and religious bodies are crowded with them. And they look upon the religious bodies with exultation; for the cloak of religion covers the greatest crimes and iniquity.
All heaven beholds with indignation, human beings, the workmanship of God, reduced to the lowest depths of degradation, and placed on a level with the brute creation by their fellow men. And professed followers of that dear Saviour whose compassion was ever moved as he witnessed human woe, heartily engage in this enormous and grievous sin, and deal in slaves and souls of men. Angels have recorded it all. It is written in the book. The tears of the pious bond-men and bond-women, of fathers, mothers and children, brothers and sisters, are all bottled up in heaven. Agony, human agony, is carried from place to place, and bought and sold. God will restrain his anger but a little longer. His anger burns against this nation, and especially against the religious bodies who have sanctioned, and have themselves engaged in this terrible merchandise. Such injustice, such oppression, such sufferings, many professed followers of the meek and lowly Jesus can witness with heartless indifference. And many of them can inflict with hateful satisfaction, all this indescribable agony themselves, and yet dare to worship God. It is solemn mockery, and Satan exults over it, and reproaches Jesus and his angels with such inconsistency, saying, with hellish triumph, Such are Christ's followers!
These professed Christians read of the sufferings of the martyrs, and tears course down their cheeks. They wonder that men could ever possess hearts so hardened as to practice such inhuman cruelties towards their fellow-men, while at the same time they hold their fellow-men in slavery. And this is not all. They sever the ties of nature, and cruelly oppress from day to day their fellow-men. They can inflict most inhuman tortures with relentless cruelty, which would well compare with the cruelty papists and heathens exercised towards Christ's followers. Said the angel, It will be more tolerable for the heathen and for papists in the day of the execution of God's judgment than for such men. The cries and sufferings of the oppressed have reached unto heaven, and angels stand amazed at the hard-hearted, untold, agonizing suffering, man in the image of his Maker, causes his fellow-man. Said the angel, The names of such are written in blood, crossed with stripes, and flooded with agonizing, burning tears of suffering. God's anger will not cease until he has caused the land of light to drink the dregs of the cup of his fury, and until he has rewarded unto Babylon double. Reward her even as she rewarded you, double unto her double according to her works: in the cup which she hath filled, fill to her double.
I saw that the slave-master would have to answer for the soul of his slave whom he has kept in ignorance; and all the sins of the slave will be visited upon the master. God cannot take the slave to heaven, who has been kept in ignorance and degradation, knowing nothing of God, or the Bible, fearing nothing but his master's lash, and not holding so elevated a position as his master's brute beasts. But he does the best thing for him that a compassionate God can do. He lets him be as though he had not been; while the master has to suffer the seven last plagues, and then come up in the second resurrection, and suffer the second, most awful death. Then the wrath of God will be appeased.
See Revelation 18, Amos 5:21.
I saw angels hurrying to and fro in heaven. They were descending to earth, and again ascending to heaven, preparing for the fulfilment of some important event. Then I saw another mighty angel commissioned to descend to earth, and unite his voice with the third angel, and give power and force to his message. Great power and glory were imparted to the angel, and as he descended, the earth was lightened with his glory. The light which went before and followed after this angel, penetrated everywhere, as he cried 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. The message of the fall of Babylon, as given by the second angel, is again given, with the addition of the corruptions which have been entering the churches since 1844. The work of this angel comes in at the right time, and joins in the last great work of the third angel's message, as it swells into a loud cry. And the people of God are fitted up everywhere to stand in the hour of temptation which they are soon to meet. I saw a great light resting upon them, and they united in the message, and fearlessly proclaimed with great power the third angel's message.
Angels were sent to aid the mighty angel from heaven, and I heard voices which seemed to sound everywhere, 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. This message seemed to be an addition to the third message, and joined it, as the midnight cry joined the second angel's message in 1844. The glory of God rested upon the patient, waiting saints, and they fearlessly gave the last solemn warning, proclaiming the fall of Babylon, and calling upon God's people to come out of her; that they might escape her fearful doom.
The light that was shed upon the waiting ones penetrated everywhere, and those who had any light in the churches, who had not heard and rejected the three messages, answered to the call, and left the fallen churches. Many had come to years of accountability since these messages had been given, and the light shone upon them, and they were privileged to choose life or death. Some chose life, and took their stand with those looking for their Lord, and keeping all his commandments. The third message was to do its work; all were to be tested upon it, and the precious ones were to be called out from the religious bodies. A compelling power moves the honest, while the manifestation of the power of God holds in fear and restraint relatives and friends, and they dare not, neither have they power to, hinder those who feel the work of the Spirit of God upon them. The last call is carried even to the poor slaves, and the pious among them, with humble expressions, pour forth their songs of extravagant joy at the prospect of their happy deliverance, and their masters cannot check them; for a fear and astonishment keep them silent. Mighty miracles are wrought, the sick are healed, and signs and wonders follow the believers. God is in the work, and every saint, fearless of consequences, follows the convictions of his own conscience, and unites with those who are keeping all the commandments of God; and they sound abroad the third message with power. I saw that the third message would close with power and strength far exceeding the midnight cry.
Servants of God, endowed with power from on high, with their faces lighted up, and shining with holy consecration, went forth fulfilling their work, and proclaiming the message from heaven. Souls that were scattered all through the religious bodies answered to the call, and the precious were hurried out of the doomed churches, as Lot was hurried out of Sodom before her destruction. God's people were fitted up and strengthened by the excellent glory which fell upon them in rich abundance, preparing them to endure the hour of temptation. A multitude of voices I heard everywhere, saying, Here is the patience of the saints; here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.
See Revelation 14:12, Revelation 18, Joel 2:9-11.
I was pointed down to the time when the third angel's message was closing. The power of God had rested upon his people. They had accomplished their work, and were prepared for the trying hour before them. They had received the latter rain, or refreshing from the presence of the Lord, and the living testimony had been revived. The last great warning had sounded everywhere, and it had stirred up and enraged the inhabitants of earth, who would not receive the message.
I saw angels hurrying to and fro in heaven. An angel returned from the earth with a writer's ink-horn by his side, and reported to Jesus that his work was done, that the saints were numbered and sealed. Then I saw Jesus, who had been ministering before the ark containing the ten commandments, throw down the censer. He raised his hands upward, and with a loud voice said, It is done. And all the angelic host laid off their crowns as Jesus made the solemn declaration, He that is unjust, let him be unjust still; and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still; and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still; and he that is holy, let him be holy still.
I saw that every case was then decided for life or death. Jesus had blotted out the sins of his people. He had received his kingdom, and the atonement had been made for the subjects of his kingdom. While Jesus had been ministering in the Sanctuary, the judgment had been going on for the righteous dead, and then for the righteous living. The subjects of the kingdom were made up. The marriage of the Lamb was finished. And the kingdom, and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven, was given to Jesus, and the heirs of salvation, and Jesus was to reign as King of kings, and Lord of lords.
As Jesus moved out of the Most Holy place, I heard the tinkling of the bells upon his garment, and as he left, a cloud of darkness covered the inhabitants of the earth. There was then no mediator between guilty man, and an offended God. While Jesus had been standing between God and guilty man, a restraint was upon the people; but when Jesus stepped out from between man and the Father, the restraint was removed, and Satan had the control of man. It was impossible for the plagues to be poured out while Jesus officiated in the Sanctuary; but as his work there is finished, as his intercession closes, there is nothing to stay the wrath of God, and it breaks with fury upon the shelterless head of the guilty sinner, who has slighted salvation, and hated reproof. The saints in that fearful time, after the close of Jesus' mediation, were living in the sight of a holy God, without an intercessor. Every case was decided, every jewel numbered. Jesus tarried a moment in the outer apartment of the heavenly Sanctuary, and the sins which had been confessed while he was in the Most Holy place, he placed back upon the originator of sin, the Devil. He must suffer the punishment of these sins.
Then I saw Jesus lay off his priestly attire, and clothe himself with his most kingly robes -- upon his head were many crowns, a crown within a crown -- and surrounded by the angelic host, he left heaven. The plagues were falling upon the inhabitants of the earth. Some were denouncing God, and cursing him. Others rushed to the people of God, and begged to be taught how they should escape the judgments of God. But the saints had nothing for them. The last tear for sinners had been shed, the last agonizing prayer offered, the last burden had been borne. The sweet voice of mercy was no more to invite them. The last note of warning had been given. When the saints, and all heaven were interested for their salvation, they had no interest for themselves. Life and death had been set before them. Many desired life; but did not make any effort to obtain it. They did not choose life, and now there was no atoning blood to cleanse the sinner. No compassionate Saviour to plead for them, and cry, Spare, spare the sinner a little longer. All heaven had united with Jesus, as they heard the fearful words, It is done, It is finished. The plan of salvation had been accomplished. But few had chosen to accept the plan. And as mercy's sweet voice died away, a fearfulness and horror seized them. With terrible distinctness they hear, Too late! too late!
Those who had not prized God's word were hurrying to and fro. They wandered from sea to sea, and from the north to the east, to seek the word of the Lord. Said the angel, They shall not find it. There is a famine in the land; not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord. What would they not give for one word of approval from God? but no, they must hunger and thirst on. Day after day have they slighted salvation, and prized earthly pleasure, and earthly riches, higher than any heavenly inducement and treasure. They have rejected Jesus, and despised his saints. The filthy must remain filthy forever.
A great portion of the wicked were greatly enraged, as they suffered the effects of the plagues. It was a scene of fearful agony. Parents were bitterly reproaching their children, and children reproaching their parents, brothers their sisters, and sisters their brothers. Loud wailing cries were heard in every direction, It was you who kept me from receiving the truth, which would have saved me from this awful hour. The people turned upon the ministers with bitter hate, and reproached them, telling them, You have not warned us. You told us all the world was to be converted, and cried, Peace, peace, to quiet every fear that was aroused. You have not told us of this hour, and those who warned us of it you said were fanatics, and evil men, who would ruin us. But the ministers, I saw, did not escape the wrath of God. Their sufferings were ten-fold greater than their people's.
See Ezekiel 9:2-11; Revelation 22:11.
I saw the saints leaving the cities and villages, and associating in companies together, and living in the most solitary places. Angels provided them food and water; but the wicked were suffering with hunger and thirst. Then I saw the leading men of earth consulting together, and Satan and his angels were busy around them. I saw a writing, and copies of it scattered in different parts of the land, giving orders, that unless the saints should yield their peculiar faith, give up the Sabbath, and observe the first day, they were at liberty, after such a time, to put them to death. But in this time the saints were calm and composed, trusting in God, and leaning upon his promise, that a way of escape would be made for them. In some places, before the time for the writing to be executed, the wicked rushed upon the saints to slay them; but angels in the form of men of war fought for them. Satan wished to have the privilege of destroying the saints of the Most High; but Jesus bade his angels watch over them, for God would be honored by making a covenant with those who had kept his law in the sight of the heathen round about them; and Jesus would be honored by translating the faithful, waiting ones, who had so long expected him, without their seeing death.
Soon I saw the saints suffering great mental anguish. They seemed to be surrounded with the wicked inhabitants of earth. Every appearance was against them. Some began to fear that God had left them at last to perish by the hand of the wicked. But if their eyes could have been opened, they would have seen themselves surrounded by angels of God. Next came the multitude of the angry wicked, and next a mass of evil angels, hurrying on the wicked to slay the saints. But as they would attempt to approach them, they would first have to pass this company of mighty, holy angels, which was impossible. The angels of God were causing them to recede, and also causing the evil angels who were pressing around them, to fall back. It was an hour of terrible, fearful agony to the saints. They cried day and night unto God for deliverance. To outward appearance there was no possibility of their escape. The wicked had already commenced their triumphing, and were crying out, Why doesn't your God deliver you out of our hands? Why don't you go up, and save your lives? The saints heeded them not. They were wrestling with God like Jacob. The angels longed to deliver them; but they must wait a little longer, and drink of the cup, and be baptized with the baptism. The angels, faithful to their trust, kept their watch. The time had about come when God was to manifest his mighty power, and gloriously deliver them. God would not suffer his name to be reproached among the heathen. For his name's glory he would deliver every one of those who had patiently waited for him, and whose names were written in the book.
I was pointed back to faithful Noah. The rain descended, the floods came. Noah and his family had entered the ark, and God shut them in. Noah had faithfully warned the inhabitants of the old world, while they had mocked and derided him. And as the waters descended upon the earth, and as one after another were being drowned, they beheld that ark that they had made so much sport of, riding safely upon the waters, preserving the faithful Noah and his family. So I saw that the people of God, who had warned the world of his coming wrath, would be delivered. They had faithfully warned the inhabitants of the earth, and God would not suffer the wicked to destroy those who were expecting translation, and who would not bow to the decree of the beast, or receive his mark. I saw that if the wicked were permitted to slay the saints, Satan and all his evil host, and all who hate God, would be gratified. And O, what a time of triumph it would be for his Satanic majesty, to have power, in the last closing struggle, over those who had so long waited to behold Him whom they loved. Those who have mocked at the idea of the saints going up, will witness the care of God for his people, and their glorious deliverance.
As the saints left the cities and villages, they were pursued by the wicked. They raised their swords to kill the saints, but they broke, and fell as powerless as a straw. Angels of God shielded the saints. As they cried day and night for deliverance, their cry came up before God.
See Genesis 7:1; Isaiah 33:16, 49:10; Revelation 14:14.
It was at midnight that God chose to deliver his people. As the wicked were mocking around them, suddenly the sun appeared, shining in his strength, and the moon stood still. The wicked beheld the scene with amazement. Signs and wonders followed in quick succession. Everything seemed turned out of its natural course. The saints beheld the tokens of their deliverance with solemn joy.
The streams ceased to flow. Dark, heavy clouds came up, and clashed against each other. But there was one clear place of settled glory, from whence came the voice of God, like many waters, which shook the heavens and the earth. There was a mighty earthquake. The graves were shaken open, and those who had died in faith under the third angel's message, keeping the Sabbath, came forth from their dusty beds, glorified, to hear the covenant of peace that God was to make with those who had kept his law.
The sky opened and shut, and was in commotion. The mountains shook like a reed in the wind, and cast out ragged rocks all around. The sea boiled like a pot, and cast out stones upon the land. And as God spake the day and hour of Jesus' coming, and delivered the everlasting covenant to his people, he spake one sentence, and then paused, while the words were rolling through the earth. The Israel of God stood with their eyes fixed upwards, listening to the words as they came from the mouth of Jehovah, and rolled through the earth like peals of loudest thunder. It was awfully solemn. At the end of every sentence the saints shouted, Glory! Hallelujah! Their countenances were lighted up with the glory of God; and they shone with the glory as did Moses' face when he came down from Sinai. The wicked could not look on them for the glory. And when the never-ending blessing was pronounced on those who had honored God, in keeping his Sabbath holy, there was a mighty shout of victory over the beast, and over his image.
Then commenced the jubilee, when the land should rest. I saw the pious slave rise in triumph and victory, and shake off the chains that bound him, while his wicked master was in confusion, and knew not what to do; for the wicked could not understand the words of the voice of God. Soon appeared the great white cloud. On it sat the Son of man.
This cloud when it first appeared in the distance, looked very small. The angel said that it was the sign of the Son of man. And as the cloud approached nearer to the earth, we could behold the excellent glory and majesty of Jesus as he rode forth to conquer. A holy retinue of angels, with their bright, glittering crowns upon their heads, escorted him on his way. No language can describe the glory of the scene. The living cloud of majesty, and unsurpassed glory, came still nearer, and we could clearly behold the lovely person of Jesus. He did not wear a crown of thorns; but a crown of glory decked his holy brow. Upon his vesture and thigh was a name written - KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS. His eyes were as a flame of fire, his feet had the appearance of fine brass, and his voice sounded like many musical instruments. His countenance was as bright as the noon-day sun. The earth trembled before him, and the heavens departed as a scroll when it is rolled together, and every mountain and island were moved out of their places. And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every freeman, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains. And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb: for the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?
Those who a little before would have destroyed God's faithful children from the earth, had to witness the glory of God which rested upon them. They had seen them glorified. And amid all the terrible scenes they had heard the voices of the saints in joyful strains, saying, Lo, this is our God, we have waited for him, and he will save us. The earth mightily shook as the voice of the Son of God called forth the sleeping saints. They responded to the call, and came forth clothed with glorious immortality, crying, Victory! victory! over death and the grave. O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? Then the living saints, and the resurrected ones, raised their voices in a long, transporting shout of victory. Those sickly bodies that had gone down into the grave came up in immortal health and vigor. The living saints were changed in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, and caught up with the resurrected ones, and together they meet their Lord in the air. O what a glorious meeting. Friends whom death had separated, were united, never more to part.
On either side of the cloudy chariot were wings, and beneath it were living wheels; and as the cloudy chariot rolled upward, the wheels cried, Holy, and the wings, as they moved, cried, Holy, and the retinue of holy angels around the cloud cried, Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God Almighty. And the saints in the cloud cried, Glory, Alleluia. And the chariot rolled upward to the holy city. Before entering the holy city, the saints were arranged in a perfect square, with Jesus in the midst. He was head and shoulders high above the saints, and head and shoulders above the angels. His majestic form, and lovely countenance, could be seen by all in the square.
See Revelation 15:1-4, 6:12-17.
Then I saw a very great number of angels bring from the city glorious crowns; a crown for every saint with his name written thereon; and as Jesus called for the crowns, angels presented them to him, and the lovely Jesus, with his own right hand, placed the crowns on the heads of the saints. In the same manner, the angels brought the harps, and Jesus presented them also to the saints. The commanding angels first struck the note, and then every voice was raised in grateful, happy praise, and every hand skillfully swept over the strings of the harp, sending forth melodious music in rich and perfect strains. Then I saw Jesus lead the redeemed company to the gate of the city. He laid hold of the gate and swung it back on its glittering hinges, and bade the nations who had kept the truth to enter in. There was everything in the city to feast the eye. Rich glory they beheld everywhere. Then Jesus looked upon his redeemed saints; their countenances were radiant with glory; and as he fixed his loving eyes upon them, he said, with his rich, musical voice, I behold the travail of my soul, and am satisfied. This rich glory is yours to enjoy eternally. Your sorrows are ended. There shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain. I saw the redeemed host bow and cast their glittering crowns at the feet of Jesus, and then, as his lovely hand raised them up, they touched their golden harps, and filled all heaven with their music, and songs to the Lamb.
I then saw Jesus leading the redeemed host to the tree of life, and again we heard his lovely voice, richer than any music that ever fell on mortal ear, saying, The leaves of this tree are for the healing of the nations. Eat ye all of it. Upon the tree of life was most beautiful fruit, which the saints could partake of freely. There was a most glorious throne in the City, and from under the throne proceeded a pure river of water of life, as clear as crystal. On either side of this river of life was the tree of life. On the banks of the river were beautiful trees bearing fruit which was good for food. Language is altogether too feeble to attempt a description of heaven. As the scene rises before me I am lost in amazement; and carried away with the surpassing splendor and the excellent glory, I lay down the pen, and exclaim, O what love! What wondrous love! The most exalted language cannot describe the glory of heaven, nor the matchless depths of a Saviour's love.
See Revelation 2:10, 21:4, 22:1-6; Isaiah 65:17-25.
I then beheld the earth. The wicked were dead, and their bodies were lying upon the face of the earth. The inhabitants of earth had suffered the wrath of God in the seven last plagues. They had gnawed their tongues for pain and had cursed God. The false shepherds were signal objects of Jehovah's wrath. Their eyes had consumed away in their holes, and their tongues in their mouths, while they stood upon their feet. After the saints were delivered by the voice of God, the rage of the wicked multitude was turned upon each other. The earth seemed to be deluged with blood, and dead bodies were from one end of the earth to the other.
The earth was in a most desolate condition. Cities and villages, shaken down by the earthquake, lay in heaps. Mountains were moved out of their places, leaving large caverns. The sea had thrown out ragged rocks upon the earth, and rocks had been torn out of the earth, and were scattered all over its surface. The earth looked like a desolate wilderness. Large trees were rooted up, and were strewn over the land. Here is Satan's home, with his evil angels, through the 1000 years. Here they will be confined, and wander up and down over the broken surface of the earth, and see the effects of his rebellion against God's law. The effects of the curse which he has caused, he can enjoy through the 1000 years. Limited alone to the earth, he will have no privilege of ranging around to other planets, to tempt and annoy those who have not fallen. Satan suffers in this time extremely. Since his fall his evil traits have been in constant exercise. He is then deprived of his power, and left to reflect upon the part he has acted since his fall, and to look forward with trembling and terror to the dreadful future, when he must suffer for all the evil he has done, and be punished for all the sins he has caused to be committed.
Then I heard shouts of triumph from the angels, and from the redeemed saints, which sounded like ten thousand musical instruments, because they were to be no more annoyed and tempted by the Devil, and the inhabitants of other worlds were delivered from his presence and his temptations.
Then I saw thrones, and Jesus and the redeemed saints sat upon them; and the saints reigned as kings and priests unto God, and the wicked dead were judged, and their acts were compared with the statute book, the word of God, and they were judged according to the deeds done in the body. Jesus, in union with the saints, meted out to the wicked the portion they must suffer, according to their works; and it was written in the book of death, and set off against their names. Satan and his angels were also judged by Jesus and the saints. Satan's punishment was to be far greater than that of those whom he had deceived. It so far exceeded their punishment that it could not be compared with theirs. After all those whom he had deceived had perished, Satan was to still live and suffer on much longer.
After the judgment of the wicked dead was finished, at the end of the one thousand years, Jesus left the City, and a train of the angelic host followed him. The saints also went with him. Jesus descended upon a great and mighty mountain, which, as soon as his feet touched it, parted asunder, and became a mighty plain. Then we looked up and saw the great and beautiful City, with twelve foundations, twelve gates, three on each side, and an angel at each gate. We cried out, The City! The great City! It is coming down from God out of heaven! And it came down in all its splendor, and dazzling glory, and settled in the mighty plain which Jesus had prepared for it.
See Revelation 16:1-21, 20:2, 7:15.
Then Jesus and all the holy retinue of angels, and all the redeemed saints, left the City. The holy angels surrounded Jesus, and escorted him on his way, and the train of redeemed saints followed. Then Jesus in terrible, fearful majesty called forth the wicked dead; and as they came up with the same feeble, sickly bodies that went into the grave, what a spectacle! what a scene! At the first resurrection all came forth in immortal bloom; but at the second, the marks of the curse are visible on all. Kings and the noble men of earth come forth with the mean and the low, learned and unlearned together. All behold the Son of man; and those very men who despised and mocked Jesus, and smote him with the reed, and that put the crown of thorns upon his sacred brow, behold him in all his kingly majesty. Those who spit upon him in the hour of his trial, now turn from his piercing gaze, and from the glory of his countenance. Those who drove the nails through his hands and his feet, now look upon the marks of his crucifixion. Those who thrust the spear into his side, behold the marks of their cruelty on his body. And they know that he is the very One whom they crucified, and derided in his expiring agony. And then there arises one long protracted wail of agony, as they flee to hide from the presence of the King of kings and Lord of lords.
All are seeking to hide in the rocks, and shield themselves from the terrible glory of him whom they once despised. As all are overwhelmed and pained with his majesty and his exceeding glory, they with one accord raise their voices, and with terrible distinctness exclaim, Blessed is he who cometh in the name of the Lord.
Then Jesus and the holy angels, accompanied by all the saints, again go to the City, and the bitter lamentations and wailings of the doomed wicked fill the air. Then I saw that Satan again commenced his work. He passed around among his subjects, and made the feeble and weak strong, and then he told them that he and his angels were powerful. He then pointed to the countless millions who had been raised. There were mighty warriors and kings who were well skilled in battle, and who had conquered kingdoms. And there were mighty giants, and men who were valiant, and had never lost a battle. There was the proud, ambitious Napoleon whose approach had caused kingdoms to tremble. There stood men of very high stature, and of dignified, lofty bearing, who had fallen in battle. They fell while thirsting to conquer. As they come forth from their graves, they resume the current of their thoughts where it ceased in death. They possess the same spirit to conquer which ruled when they fell. Satan consults with his angels, and then with those kings and conquerors and mighty men. Then he looks over the vast army and tells them that the company in the City is small and feeble, and that they can go up and take that City, and cast out its inhabitants, and possess its riches and glory themselves.
Satan succeeds in deceiving them, and all immediately commence to fit themselves for battle. They construct weapons of war; for there are many skillful men in that vast army. And then with Satan at their head, the multitude move on. Kings and warriors follow close after Satan, and the multitude follow after in companies. Every company has a leader, and order is observed as they march over the broken surface of the earth to the holy City. Jesus closes the gates of the City, and this vast army surround it and place themselves in battle array. They have prepared all kinds of implements of war, expecting to have a fierce conflict. They arrange themselves around the City. Jesus and all the angelic host with the glittering crowns upon their heads, and all the saints with their bright crowns, ascend to the top of the wall of the City. Jesus speaks with majesty and says, Behold, ye sinners, the reward of the just! And behold ye my redeemed, the reward of the wicked! The vast multitude behold the glorious company on the walls of the City. And as they witness the splendor of their glittering crowns, and see their faces radiant with glory, expressing the image of Jesus, and then behold the unsurpassed glory and majesty of the King of kings, and Lord of lords, their courage fails. The sense of the treasure and the glory which they have lost, rushes upon them, and they have a realizing sense that the wages of sin is death. They see the holy, happy company whom they have despised, clothed with glory, honor, immortality and eternal life, while they are outside of the City with every mean and abominable thing.
See I Thessalonians 4:16,17; Revelation 6:15,16, 20:7-9.
Satan rushes into the midst, and tries to stir up the multitude to action. But fire from God out of heaven is rained upon them, and the great men, and the mighty men, and the noble, and poor and miserable men, are all consumed together. I saw that some were quickly destroyed, while others suffered longer. They were punished according to the deeds done in the body. Some were many days consuming, and just as long as there was a portion of them unconsumed, all the sense of suffering was there. Said the angel, The worm of life shall not die; their fire shall not be quenched as long as there is the least particle for it to prey upon.
But Satan and his angels suffered long. Satan not only bore the weight and punishment of his sins, but the sins of all the redeemed host had been placed upon him; and he must also suffer for the ruin of the souls which he had caused. Then I saw that Satan, and all the wicked host, were consumed, and the justice of God was satisfied; and all the angelic host, and all the redeemed saints, with a loud voice said, Amen!
Said the angel, Satan is the root, his children are the branches. They are now consumed root and branch. They have died an everlasting death. They will never have a resurrection, and God will have a clean universe. I then looked, and saw the fire which had consumed the wicked, burning up the rubbish and purifying the earth. Again I looked and saw the earth purified. There was not a single sign of the curse. The broken up, and uneven surface of the earth now looked like a level, extensive plain. God's entire universe was clean, and the great controversy was forever ended. Everywhere we looked, everything the eye rested upon, was beautiful and holy. And all the redeemed host, old and young, great and small, cast their glittering crowns at the feet of their Redeemer, and prostrated themselves in adoration before him, and worshiped him that liveth forever and ever. The beautiful New Earth, with all its glory, was the eternal inheritance of the saints. The kingdom, and dominion, and greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven, was then given to the saints of the Most High who were to possess it forever, even forever and ever.
See Daniel 7:26,27; Mark 9:44,48; II Peter 3:9-13; Revelation 20:6-10.