by A.E. Knoch

SYSTEM, or order, is the underlying thought in the word kosmos, which is usually rendered world in English. We seriously considered dropping the word world at one time, as it is more or less encrusted with misleading theological ideas. But there does not seem to be a very good substitute. We might have tried system, or even kosmos, using the Greek word, as we did with eon. In the sublinear we were free to put it as it should be, SYSTEM. Even with this it is almost impossible for some of us to shake off the old associations, such as we find in the phrase, "the world, the flesh, and the devil," so we think of the world as something essentially bad and incurably evil. It is the faded figure "association," by which that which is included in a system is called by this name.

        But a SYSTEM or world is not in itself undesirable. On the contrary, the use of this word for adornment (1 Peter 3:3), which is its usual sense when used as a verb, adorn, decorate (Luke 21:5; Titus 2:10, etc.), shows that it may be very agreeable indeed. This is further confirmed by the adverb and adjective, which is decorous (1 Tim.2:9; 3:2). It is clear that world has in some way lost much of its real contents, and has taken on an evil tinge which it does not really possess. The reason seems to be that it is used so frequently of the present world, which, like its attendant eon, is wicked (Gal.1:4). I have sometimes thought of using world-order, but the word is so frequently used, by association, for the people who are in it, that even this term could not be uniformly used.

        In German also we use the word Welt world in the version. In other writings we use it more freely at times, in connection with the word all. The German Weltall (world-all) is in common use in the place of our word universe, though Universum is also allowable, even if not pure German. But we avoid using this for kosmos, SYSTEM. For this we have created a new term Weltsystem (world-system), which should help keep the word within its proper limits and express its real meaning.

        Many incline to think that, at this time, there is no real order in the world, but that it is evil because of the lack of system. This, we suggest, is a mistake into which we fall because we cannot discern much plan or purpose in this era. Each man is for himself, and when organized into groups or governments, each seems to be lawless, self-centered, striving for selfish objectives. This seems to lead to disorder and chaos and conflict. But the same may be said of the stars. Looked at from the earth, they seem to be sprinkled about haphazardly, going hither and thither, back and forth, without rhyme or reason. But when we once discover a little of their relationship to one another, the most marvelous order is nearly everywhere apparent.

        So also will it be with this world in which we live, notwithstanding the inextricable confusion which seems to prevail. All is of God, and is adapted to fulfill His intention, and to gain His goal. In very truth, it is a real SYSTEM for the outworking of evil, just as the next world will be adjusted to produce good. Just as God carries on the vessels of indignation, adapted to destruction, and makes the vessels of mercy ready beforehand for glory, so He adapts each world to the task it has to fulfill in His great plan to reveal Himself. Even though it is evil, and must be so in order to reveal man to himself and prepare him to find his All in God, it is a real world, or SYSTEM, fearfully complicated for us, indeed, but nevertheless a well-designed and efficient arrangement for the purpose for which it exists.

        Like most words which are frequently used as a figure, world has been the source of much confusion of thought and the premise of many a misleading "argument." As the figurative usage of a word varies much, the concordant method may lead astray if the figures are not recognized and kept by themselves. This can be seen from the fact that world seems to have contradictory meanings in the Scriptures. How many of us would use the adjective, worldly kosmikon of God's holy place (Heb.9:1)?

        In words of this class attempts have been made to strike an average and take this as its meaning. But this is not possible where a word seems to have so many variable significations, some of which seem to clash with the bulk of passages. The general idea that worldly denotes earthly, unspiritual, secular, is not warranted by the Scriptures, when it is used of those parts of God's dwelling place which were most holy, and most spiritual, though on earth, being copies of celestial originals, and most sacred. The central meaning is to be found only in the literal usage, never in the figurative.


        Except in 1 Peter 3:3, where it is used of the adornment of a woman, and is used literally (as well as figuratively for the human heart, as an implication), the word world is almost always employed in the figure association, but this has now become so common that we call it a faded figure, and do not mark it in the keyword edition. Perhaps James 3:6 should also be classed under implications, as it compares the tongue with the world of injustice. Elsewhere there is little apparent likeness, but only association. The social structure or system of mankind is usually put for those included in it. Thus we read that "God thus loves the world," that is, those living in the world-order which brings us to destruction. It is just as if we spoke of saving a ship which was doomed, when we really mean the passengers and crew.


        Notwithstanding years of acquaintance with the facts, while I write this article scriptures have persisted in presenting themselves to my mind in which the usual versions use the word world for other Greek terms. I imagine that nearly all of my friends are hindered from getting a clear grasp of its meaning by these intrusive memories, which bring it into unscriptural associations. So we will briefly list the passages in which "world" is wrongly rendered, so as to beware of them in our studies and in our meditations. We will quote only those in the Greek Scriptures, but give the passages in the Hebrew, in case some would like to correct these in their Bibles.

world for Hebrew artz, LAND, earth
Psa.22:27; Isa.23:17; 62:11; Jer.25:26.


world for Hebrew chdl, LEAVE-OFF
Isa.38:11 (probably to be read chld, as below).


world for Hebrew chld, TRANSIENCE
Psa.17:14; 49:1.


world for Hebrew oulm, OBSCURE, eon
Psa.73:12; Ecc.3:11; Isa.45:17; 64:4.


world for Hebrew thbl, MINGLE, habitance
1 Sam.2:8; 2 Sam.22:16; 1 Chron.16:30; Job 18:18; 34:13; 37:12; Psa.9:8; 18:15; 19:4; 24:1; 33:8; 50:12; 77:18; 89:11; 90:2; 93:1; 96:10,13; 97:4; 98:7,9; Prov.8:26; Isa.13:11; 14:17,21; 18:3; 24:4; 26:9,18; 27:6; 34:1; Jer.10:12; 51:15; Lam.4:12; Nahum 1:5.


world for Greek aioon, UN-IF-BEING, eon
Matt. 12:32   neither in this world, neither in
  13:22   care of this world, and the deceitfulness
  39   the harvest is the end of the world
  40   so shall it be in the end of this world
Matt. 13:49   So shall it be at the end of the world
  24: 3   sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world
  28:20   with you unto the end of the world
Mark 4:19   cares of this world, and the deceitfulness
  10:30   In the world to come eternal life
Luke 1:70   prophets, which have been since the world
  16: 8   children of this world are in their generation
  18:30   in the world to come everlasting life
  20:34   children of this world marry
  35   accounted worthy to obtain that world
John 9:32   Since the world began was it not heard
Acts 3:21   all his holy prophets since the world began
  15:18   works since the beginning of the world
Rom. 12: 2   be not conformed to this world
  16:25   kept secret since the world began
1 Cor. 1:20   where (is) the disputer of this world
  2: 6   this world, or of the princes of this world
  7   which God ordained before the world
  8   none of the princes of this world
  3:18   seemeth to be wise in this world
  8:13   I will eat no flesh while the world
  10:11   upon whom the ends of the world are come
2 Cor. 4: 4   In whom the god of this world
Gal. 1: 4   deliver us from the present evil world
Eph. 1:21   not only in this world, but in that
  3: 9   from the beginning of the world
  21   throughout all ages, world without end
  6:12   rulers of the darkness of this world
1 Tim. 6:17   them that are rich in this world
2 Tim. 1: 9   given us in Christ Jesus before the world began
  4:10   having loved this present world
Titus 1: 2   God...promised before the world began
  2:12   live this present world
Heb. 1: 2   by whom also he made the worlds
  6: 5   the powers of the world to come
  9:26   once in the end of the world
  11: 3   the worlds were framed by the word of God


world for Greek gee, LAND, earth
Rev. 13: 3 all the world wondered after the beast


world for Greek oikoumenee, beING-HOMED, inhabited earth
Matt. 24:14   preached in all the world for a witness
Luke 2: 1   decree.....all the world should be taxed
  4: 5   showed.....him all the kingdoms of the world
Acts 11:28   great dearth throughout the world
  17: 6   turned the world upside down
  31   In the which he will judge the world
  19:27   all Asia and the world worshippeth
  24: 5   among all the Jews throughout the world
Rom. 10:18   their words to the end of the world
Heb. 1: 6   bringeth in the first begotten into the world
  2: 5   hath he not put in subjection the world
Rev. 3:10   which shall come upon all the world
  12: 9   Satan, which deceiveth the whole world
  16:14   kings of the earth and of the whole world

        Those of us who have had much to do with the common version will find it almost impossible to eradicate these false contexts from our minds. They persist in clouding our conception of the usage of the word world in spite of our earnest efforts to erase them. Some of these passages have dominated discussions of future events and made the Word of God appear ridiculous in the eyes of its enemies. Is it not true that "the end of the world" has caused much havoc, which "world without end" has not been able to prevent or neutralize!

        An interesting feature of these renderings is the mingling of world with eon. The reason why it could be done seems clear, for both refer to the same thing, looked at from different points of view. Judged from their elements, UN-IF-BEING and SYSTEM, the course of events is looked at as inevitable existence in one and as orderly arrangement in the other. Both occupy the same periods of time, so one could be used for the other in some passages without detection. For those of us who have learned to think clearly as to the eons, the next step is to get a clear grasp of the same periods under the aspect presented by the word kosmos, world.


        A phrase which is much to blame for our misconceptions as to the meaning of the word world is "the foundation of the world." The word themelios, which really signifies foundation (Luke 6:48; 1 Cor.3:10; Rev.21:14, etc.) is never associated with world in the Scriptures. To us "the foundation of the world" suggests the commencement of the physical universe, a sense which seems entirely absent from the Scriptures, though well known in science. It always refers to the disruption of a social order, not to the building of a material edifice.


        The social aspect of the world is presented by the apostle John, to the Circumcision. He speaks of the world as passing by, and exhorts his readers not to love this transient system, because "everything in the world, the desire of the flesh, the desire of the eyes, and the ostentation of living, is not of the Father" (1 John 2:16). Those who do not realize that John is a minister of the Circumcision put this into contrast with heaven. But the real contrast is with the next world. Now these desires are based on man's world, and all is false and fleeting. True, it comes out of God, and is in accord with His intention to humble humanity, but it is not of the Father, Who will make a world in the next eon, based on His own ability, and carried out through His Anointed, which is worthy of love and which will bring the truest and deepest satisfaction.


        The passing political and social and economic order is in man's day and dependent on human organizations intended to reveal the incapacity of mankind. The next world will be in Jehovah's day, and dependent on divine discipline intended to display the power of God and His Anointed. Hence it is that His kingdom and His saints cannot be of this world. We are not adapted to the political methods of today, hence must be subject. We are out of harmony with the social and business worlds, so cannot take the lead. But in the world that lies ahead of us all this will be reversed. We will be intimates of the sovereign and part of the government. Our names will be in the first book of the social calendar. Our possessions will be limitless. So will it be with the saints of the millennial kingdom. They belong to a different world from this.

        The foundation of the present world system is given us in the words which God spoke to Noah, immediately after the ancient world (Gen.9) had been destroyed by the flood. There is to be the fear of man upon all the other creatures of the earth. He is to eat the moving souls as well as the herbage, but not the blood (which must be drained at once from dying animals to save suffering), and human government is instituted by giving man the right to shed blood. This is the divine authority for human government, and shows why its functionaries are servants of God. This is God's order or world for today, and no saint has the right to destroy it or to oppose it, not even to bring in the millennium. That world order can be inaugurated only by the same One Who started the present system in the days of Noah.


        Although usually there is no especial social or political order in mind when this term is used, there are times when it is confined to the present arrangement, which was inaugurated after the flood and will continue until the kingdom of the world becomes our Lord's and His Christ's (Rev.11:15). When the word is limited by the pronoun this we must not include the ancient world (2 Peter 2:5) before the deluge, or the worlds in the coming eons. To these many passages will not apply. Christ is not of this world (John 8:23), yet He is the very essence of the next. His kingdom is not of this world (John 18:36) yet it dominates the next, for the kingdoms of this world will give place to His reign.

        Our Lord's statement, "My kingdom is not of this world" (John 18:36), is usually taken to mean that His kingdom is not a worldly kingdom, but a spiritual one. But He did not say the world, in general, but this world, in particular. The fact that, at His unveiling, the world kingdom becomes our Lord's and His Christ's (Rev.11:15) clearly shows that His kingdom is a world kingdom. In fact the use of the word this should settle this point. It is a world kingdom, not of this world, but of that future eon, when He takes His great power and reigns.

        The kingdom of the heavens is explained for us by the prophet Daniel. He tells us that the God of heaven will set up a kingdom which will displace the kingdoms of the great image. In his dream Nebuchadnezzar saw a stone cut out without hands, which struck the image on its feet. All of the prophets are unanimous that it will not be set up by man. The phrase without hands excludes human instrumentality, and denotes the operation of God without human help. So the mighty die (Job 34:20). So was Sodom overthrown (Lam.4:6). The Most High does not dwell in temples made with hands (Acts 7:48; 17:24; 19:26; Heb.9:11,24). Our future body is made without hands (2 Cor.5:1). Our circumcision (Eph.2:11; Col.2:11) is without human hands. Our Lord knew this, and no one can point to a single act of His, or a solitary word in His heralding which suggests sedition or violence on the part of man against the government.

        Such was the kingdom which the Jews were led to expect, and such was the sovereignty which our Lord heralded to them. That the displaced realms were real kingdoms on this earth is beyond dispute. The figure used is such as to leave no doubt that the coming kingdom will be the same. What we have today does not displace these kingdoms. It did not commence by crushing them as a falling stone. It is not a mountain in the earth. It is not the kingdom of the heavens. Quite the contrary! There are many governments on earth today, and their power is all based on the work of human hands. It was quite impossible for our Lord to mean any other kingdom than that spoken of by Daniel, for it would have cruelly deceived the people and misused the word of God. The kingdom of the heavens can only be that so called by Daniel the prophet.

        The Jews, during our Lord's ministry, were strongly inclined to insurrection. At various times, indeed, uprisings took place. They did not grasp the fact that He heralded a kingdom "of the heavens" so sought to involve Him in an insurrection, imagining that He needed their help in order to shake off the Roman yoke. After he had filled them with food they were ready to fight. The Herodians also tried to snare Him into saying something treasonable, because they did not understand the power of the kingdom. But He refused to enter their trap, and advised them to act in accord with this world, so long as the heavens had not set up the kingdom. He recognizes that, in this system, God had given Caesar authority, and He would have His disciples recognize it.

        Though our Lord heralded the nearness of a heavenly kingdom, to be set up by powers from above, He never countenanced the use of force against the authorities or the Roman government by His disciples. When Peter did use the sword, He promptly healed the wound. He said that those who took the sword would be destroyed by the sword--just as it came about in the Jewish insurrections of that time (Matt.26: 52). Much as they tried to trick Him into some statement which could be interpreted as treasonable, they failed to do so, and it was necessary to get false witnesses in order to make a show before Pilate. But he saw through their hypocrisy, knowing that they used this lie in order to force him to do their desire.

        Our Lord confirmed this thought in His defense before Pilate. He said, "If My kingdom were of this world, My deputies also would have contended, lest I should be given up to the Jew's. Yet now is My kingdom not hence" (John 18:36). Kingdoms today are established on contention and bloodshed. The rulers rightly recognize this by establishing a military force for its defense. Many think that this should not be, and that we would have universal peace if all the armies could be abolished. But they do not understand the Scriptures or the heart of humanity, or the world-system in which God has placed us. An earthly kingdom (not one on earth, but from the earth) must lean on an earthly force. A heavenly kingdom, such as our Lord's in the coming eon, is not in heaven but will be ruled by power from heaven. It will control by means of the rain (Zech.14:17) and, at the end, when it is threatened with extinction by the Adversary and an overwhelming host, fire from heaven descends and devours its enemies (Rev.20:9).

        This world is a very different world from that which is to come. If His kingdom were like those of this world, then His slaves would have contended for Him, He would have rallied His followers to defend Him, and would have mobilized all His earthly forces in order to establish His throne. But in the next world it will be different. Then He does, indeed, establish His throne by power, but not with arms of flesh or human might. It is a heavenly kingdom and the powers of the heavens wage war with His enemies and will subdue them. Terrific inflictions from above, and a celestial army on white horses, clear the earth of His foes, while the few, frightened friends He still has on earth make no effort to seat Him on His throne.

        To most of us, the phrase, this world, was once in contrast with heaven. We referred it to space, not to time. And so we grew up with the idea that the kingdom was not on earth at all, but in heaven. But this is not the viewpoint of the Scriptures. Having been introduced into the arguments of logicians who are not accustomed to choosing sound words, it has led to the repudiation of the greater part of present truth, to the practical denial of the secrets revealed through the apostle Paul, and to the offensive domination of reason over revelation and to a fog of argumentation to which there is no boundary. World and earth are entirely distinct ideas. There are three earths, but five worlds in the Scriptures. The next world is still on this earth.

        The position of apostate Christendom that our Lord did not preach an earthly kingdom is the child of human reasoning, though it seems to be the only logical deduction to those who hold it. Were they real reasoners (which no man can claim) they would come to another conclusion. Even with a little common sense they would discard terms, such as "earthly" which trip up the unwary, and lead to "implications" which are not at all implied by the actual facts. "Earthly" and "heavenly" are descriptive of character and do not locate. Much that is on earth is not earthly and much that is heavenly is on the earth.

        This is a good example of wresting the Scriptures and re-interpreting them along modern lines. Only a slight change is necessary. Substitute the word earth for world, which very few will notice, and we have reset the switch, as it were, and directed the line of thought in a totally different direction. Indeed, it is not necessary to change the word at all, for the modern mind already thinks of the world as the earth. Very few have any idea that there is more than one world or that they change with the eons, notwithstanding the plain language of our Lord.

        When Christ was before Pilate, He refused to acknowledge the ultimate sovereignty of Caesar. Pilate said to our Lord: "Are you not aware that I have authority to release you and have authority to crucify you?" Pilate was very definite in his claims. By using the word authority, he disclaims sovereignty for himself and falls back on the source of his power, Caesar. Jesus answered him, "You have no authority against Me, none except what was given you from above" (John 19:11). Our Lord goes beyond Pilate's superior, the Emperor, to God Himself, as the Supreme Power. Pilate, being afraid, because of his wife's dream, and because the Jews said that the Prisoner claimed to be God's Son, made no objection to this. Even governments must bow to the Deity, and it is not sedition to recognize God. Indeed, the head of the government which is generally supposed to have the most powerful military force, recently protested in public that he is not the Deity, and cannot control the elements.

        We all, as citizens of the countries in which we live (unless we are without citizenship or sovereignty) are in the same position. We do not advocate the overthrow of the government by force, hence are not guilty of sedition, for we recognize the officers of the law as ministers of God (Rom.13: 1-7), even though we teach that, in a future "world," which many of us now think has "drawn nigh," or, in the phraseology of the Authorized Version is "at hand," the world kingdom will become our Lord's and His Christ's (Rev.11:15). This does not involve the overthrow of all of the governments so that they will not exist in the millennium. The passage just quoted makes all one world kingdom. But such a world kingdom will exist before our Lord comes, under the wild beast, but it will include, not destroy the national governments. The nations will continue in the thousand years under the sovereignty of Messiah.

        In the millennium the territory promised to Abraham, and the authority delegated to David must pass into the hands of Israel, but the nations elsewhere, and their land, will continue under the suzerainty of Messiah and His ministers. When a country now joins the league of nations it surrenders some of its sovereignty. When the nations of the end time are confederated under the wild beast they will part with practically all of their real sovereignty, as they must bow to his will. This will also be their position in the thousand years. Legally and logically there is no more treason in predicting that a nation will join the league or the world empire of the end time than in heralding the prophecy of the Scripture that the world kingdom will become our Lord's and His Christ's.

        No one can deny that a clever lawyer could prove "by implication" that all who believe the Bible must be seditious, for they look forward to a time when the kingdoms of this world will be overthrown by force and become a part of a new world kingdom, ruled by Christ. In fact, a lawyer is not efficient who cannot reason out to any desired conclusion, for the profession has attained the reputation of transforming truth and error into its opposites. If our lives are dependent on the "implications" which a lawyer is able to extract out of our faith, we are all dead men. Meanwhile, a believer who ardently looks for the reign of Christ on earth may be the most loyal and submissive citizen in the whole realm, in obedience to God's own decree, and His assurance that, even in this present world, the authorities are His servants, and His saints are not to resist or to withstand, but to be subject (Rom.13: 1-5).

        The matter was brought to an actual test recently. An enemy of the truth accused the writer of a pamphlet, which dealt with the coming kingdom, with spreading sedition. Although there is a strong tendency against the Bible, the government held that it was a matter of faith which did not interfere with the functions or the security of the state. It belongs in the categories usually called "an act of God" by the legal fraternity, and is outside human enactments.

        The Herodians of our Lord's day had a false idea of the kingdom, and supposed that it would be established by power from beneath instead of from above, hence they were sure that they could trap our Lord into such a heralding of the kingdom as would be contrary to the laws of the land. It never occurred to them or to anyone else in those days that He was setting up a spiritual kingdom, for such a sway already existed among His disciples, but they looked forward to something tangible in the future. When the Herodians came to Him He had an opportunity of explaining the spiritual nature of the kingdom, for this might have disarmed them. But He evidently did not hold this view, for He insisted that each should have his due, Caesar as well as God (Matt.22:21).

        Although all intelligent readers of God's Word look forward to a kingdom on earth which will rule over all, none of them are plotting to bring it about, or are gathering weapons to aid in establishing it, or will join any organization which has this in view. Not only are they restrained from any efforts to set up this kingdom, but they do not expect any human agencies to bring it about. It will be the kingdom of the heavens--inaugurated and sustained by supra-mundane forces from above. Even when the kingdom is set up the Lord's disciples will not fight. They will be utterly powerless. Our Lord will not be indebted to them in the least for His power, nor will He need an army to uphold His throne.

        The "argument" that, if the Lord had proclaimed the kingdom of the heavens as near, He was an insurrectionist, and was justly accused by the Jews and executed by Pilate, is a piece of faulty logic. In the first place He heralded a kingdom of the heavens, not of the earth. That is, He never countenanced any force on the part of His disciples. They once intended to make Him King in this manner, but He would not have it. The kingdom of the heavens will be inaugurated by force, but not by earthly armies or human instrumentality. Our Lord will not lead any insurrection or call upon His disciples to bear arms in order to establish it. Therefore the "implication" that He was the Leader of sedition is illogical and false. And it is even less logical to infer from this that He did not herald an earthly kingdom.

        I have been trying to see if I could possibly entertain the idea of a spiritual kingdom when reading the opening chapters of Matthew, keeping in mind the Hebrew Scriptures, which are the only true background for the understanding of the Baptist's and our Lord's ministries. But I find that it simply will not satisfy my mind. The Son of David and of Abraham, the throne and the land, confront us in the first few lines. The genealogy seems needless in this account, and should preface the heralding of a physical kingdom. The Magi thought He was to be king of the Jews. Herod was disturbed unduly if only a spiritual kingdom was in view. John the Baptist begins by quoting Isaiah, so that he must have deliberately deceived the Jews, if, indeed, he was not himself deceived. Our Lord was shown the kingdoms of the world by the Adversary. Then our Lord commences and heralds the kingdom of the heavens predicted by Daniel (2:44), which is certainly no "spiritual" kingdom. If this is the impression made on me, how much more on the Jews who heard him? And this is decisive.

        Of course it is true that the disciples in our Lord's day, and even His apostles, were not able to understand much of what He said. But after His resurrection, and after His remaining with them for forty days and His telling them that which concerns the kingdom of God (Acts 1:3), when their hearts and minds had been opened to understand the Scriptures, then the thought that is uppermost in their mind is not that they are in a spiritual kingdom, but they asked Him, "Lord, art Thou at this time restoring the kingdom to Israel?" And our Lord, instead of telling them that this would occur not many days hence, when they received power from on high, insisted that "It is not for you to know the times or the eras which the Father placed in His own jurisdiction" (Acts 1:6,7). The kingdom had not come, it did not come at Pentecost, nor at any other time in the book of Acts. It is to come to Israel in the future according to the heralding of our Lord.

        When the superficial, hypocritical Pharisees wanted to know when the kingdom of God is coming, He turned their thoughts away from the externals to the internal state of their own hearts. So long as the nation of Israel is self-righteous and unrepentant and pretends to be just and humble, as these Pharisees, there is no use asking when the kingdom will come, for it will destroy such with its advent. To those who are internally corrupt it will not come at all, unless in devastating judgment. The inference that it has no outward polity on this account is without the shadow of a reason (Luke 17:20,21). The tribes of the land inwardly grieving over their treatment of the Messiah indicates the time when the kingdom will come. This is the aspect that the Pharisees needed to prepare them for it--not its external location.

        According to this teaching there has been no change in God's attitude toward the nations since our Lord's first advent. Israel has not been cast aside. The branches have not been changed in the olive tree. Paul had no particular mission. His "my evangel" is a myth. His secrets were all known. The whole Greek Scriptures are one hash, what the English call a "resurrection pie" because it contains all the left-overs of the week in one magnificent dish! In fact, our Lord Himself must have been mistaken when He said, "I was not commissioned except for the lost sheep of the house of Israel" (Matt.15: 24). These would not be satisfied with a spiritual kingdom, but demand the fulfillment of God's promises to Abraham and to David in the Hebrew Scriptures.

        I have often thought how easy it would be to conquer the world if I only had the heavenly powers that will be the controlling factors in the millennium. Give me authority over the clouds of the sky alone and I could defy the armaments of any nation, yes, of all of them combined, land, sea, and air. Without rain they would soon starve. With lightning they could suddenly be destroyed. Even such lands as Egypt, which needs no rain, are dependent on it in other areas, and could soon be brought to their knees by withholding moisture at the sources of the Nile. What a different world even this would be if one man could control the elements!

        And we know the One Who can do it! Moreover we know that He will do it! To be sure He will rule with an iron club. This is a formidable weapon. I once met an Arab on a lonely part of the road between Jerusalem and Bethany who had a wooden club with iron spikes in its head, slung with a thong about his wrist, and I was not at all comfortable until he had vanished. But this figure cannot depict material armaments, for these will not be present in the next world. War will become a lost art. But power will be there in plenty, in the hands of Him Who alone is worthy or welcome to use it. Hail to Him, the heavenly Suzerain, the only Hope of peace and prosperity which still remains to the world!

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