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MR. MILLER'S VISIT TO WASHINGTON.
"It had long been in contemplation, by Bro. Himes, in company with Bro. Miller, to visit Washington city, District of Columbia, and sound the alarm in the capital of the nation; but no opportunity presented itself for so doing until the past winter. Commencing in Boston, they lectured in that city, and from thence came to New York, delivering a course of lectures to a numerous audience; from thence visited Philadelphia, spent a week, and gave a course of lectures to an immense concourse of people, with very great effect. From Philadelphia, he, in company with the writer, went to Washington and commenced a course of lectures, February 20, 1844. Two weeks were spent in different sections of the city, in presenting the doctrines of Adventism, and the evidences of the speedy coming of the Lord. The attendance was good, and the interest to hear, deep. A greater revolution in public sentiment has rarely been witnessed in so short a time, than was brought about in Washington, in reference to the Advent doctrine.
"During our stay in Washington, besides the papers and books which were carried on from the North, a paper was commenced there, called the Southern Midnight Cry. Two numbers were published and' circulated in Washington and vicinity, and another in Balti more, while Bro. Miller was giving his course of lectures in that city. Thus ended the winter of 1843-4, and brought us to the point which had so long been before us--the end of the Jewish year 1843."
THE TERMINATION OF THE PROPHETIC TIMES.
"As might be expected, as the crisis, the 21st of March, approached, there was a very general expectation of an entire overthrow of the whole system of Adventism. It was supposed that those who had embraced it, if the appointed time should pass, would yield the whole question. But they had not so learned the Bible. The doctrine does not consist in merely tracing prophetic periods, although that is an important part of the work. But the whole prophetic history of the world is given in the pages of inspiration, is recorded in history, and affords indubitable evidence of the fact, that we have approached a crisis. And no disappointment respecting a definite point of time can move them, or drive them from their position relative to the speedy coming of the Lord. And it yet remains to be shown that our calculations of time are not correct, and are only in error relative to the event which marked its close. This is the most likely. There are, at present, some who falter, but comparatively few, however, who have given up the cause. Most stand unmoved amidst all the scoffs and jeers of a reviling world."
MODES OF OPPOSITION.
"It has usually been the fact that, as soon as the doctrine of the Lord's speedy coming has been presented in any place, the clergy, in the course of one or two weeks, would begin their attacks from the pulpit. The usual argument has been
"1. 'Of that day and hour knoweth no man;' yet these men profess to know the very time when the Lord
is to come. Yes, they profess to know more than the angels, or even the Son of God himself.
2. The Lord cannot come until after the millennium, during which the whole world is to be righteous, and the lion eat straw like the ox, &c.
"3. The Jews must be brought in, and restored to Palestine, before that day comes.
"4. It is to come as a thief, as a snare, &c., on all them that dwell on the earth. But now there are so many who are looking for it, that it cannot come as a
"5. It cannot come now, because there are so many learned and holy ministers and Christians, that if it should come now, it would take them by surprise. The Lord will not come without their knowing it.
6. The world is yet in its infancy; the arts and sciences are just beginning to come to maturity, and fit the world to live, and it cannot be that the Lord will come now and destroy it all.
"7. Then again there is so much waste land to be occupied in the western country, land which has never yet been cultivated at all, that it is not at all reasonable that the Lord should destroy it all before it has been improved.
"8. But the great argument, the one which has proved the most effectual, has been, that this vision of Daniel viii has nothing to do with the coming of Christ, or setting up of God's everlasting kingdom. It simply refers to Antiochus Epiphanes, and his persecution of ths Jews, and desecration of the temple, some 160 odd years B. C. Thus we have the abomination of desolation spoken of by Daniel the prophet, for which the Saviour taught his people to look, about two hundred years before the instruction was given.
"To the foregoing might be added a number more of the same class, professedly drawn from reason and Scripture, but none of them more formidable than those already recorded. Do you smile, gentle reader, at the idea of calling these arguments? Yet, you may be assured that each of them in turn has been urged by grave men, calling themselves doctors of divinity.
“But the most wonderful and overwhelming of all arguments which have ever been presented against the doctrine, is, 'Mr. Miller has built some stone wall on his farm! But, I forgot myself; I said the most wonderful; there is another quite its equal: Mr. Miller refuses to sell his farm!!' How, oh! how can Christ come, when Mr. Miller will not sell his farm?
“But this is not all; for the truth is, 'Mr. Himes has published and scattered (a large part of them gratuitously) more than five millions of books and papers. He must be engaged in a speculation; and how can the Lord come? Oh! how can he come?'
"But to be serious; a word on this subject is due these men, and the cause whose advocates they have been. For those who have known William Miller, and have known his personal history, it is not needful we should write. But there are those who know him not; on their account it is, that this memento is here inserted.
"When Mr. Miller first commenced the advocacy of the Advent doctrine, he was engaged in agricultural pursuits. He had a farm of his own, was surrounded by an interesting family, and possessed all that could make life easy and agreeable. When the Lord called and thrust him out into this work, he was in the decline of life, without the advantages of an academical education, without experience as a public speaker, without eccle
siastical preferments, except as a valued and worthy lay member of the Baptist church; the prejudices of both the church and world were decidedly against all attempts to understand the prophetic scriptures, with many other discouraging circumstances. Yet, in the face of all discouragements, he went forth taking nothing; but as freely did he bestow on others the light which God had given, as he had received it.
"For a number of years after he began this work, he traveled extensively, lectured frequently, endured privation and scoffing, and paid all the expenses of his journeys from his own funds. At the same time he had a large family dependent on him for their subsistence, besides keeping open doors for all the Lord's servants who should choose to come under his roof; where they were always sure to find a hearty welcome.
"After pursuing this course for some years, he arranged his domestic affairs, by giving up his farm into the hands of his sons, so as to sustain his family, and have an annuity of one hundred dollars, to clothe himself and meet his other incidental expenses. In this way he continued to travel far and near, wherever Providence opened the way, and for the most part bearing his own expenses. This he did until his journeys became so numerous, long and expensive, as to exceed his income. Then he permitted the people among whom he labored to pay his traveling expenses. But he has not received enough, since he began his work, to sustain him in it. From the sale of his books he has received no profit. It has been no part of his business to lay up treasures on earth, or accumulate wealth by the gospel of God's grace.
"Amidst all the vile and reproachful epithets which have been heaped upon him, all the false and scurrilous