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seen that although Christ closed one ministration at the termination of the 2300 days, he had opened another in the most holy place, and still presented his blood before the Father for sinners. As the high priest, in the type, on the tenth day of the seventh month, entered the most holy place, and offered blood for the sins of the people, before the ark of the testament and the mercyseat, so Christ, at the close of the 2300 days, came before the ark of God and the mercy-seat to plead his blood in behalf of sinners. Mark this: The great Redeemer then approached the mercy-seat in behalf of sinners. Was the door of mercy closed? This is an unscriptural expression, but, if I may be allowed to use it, may I not say that in the fullest sense of the expression the door of mercy was opened on the tenth day of the seventh month, 1844?
Beside the ark of God containing the ten precepts of his holy law, over which was the mercy-seat, did the trusting ones now behold their merciful High Priest. They had stood in harmony with the whole Advent host at the passing of the time, then represented as "the church in Philadelphia;" meaning brotherly love. And with what inexpressible sweetness did the following words addressed to that church come home to their stricken hearts: "These things saith he that is holy, he that is true, he that hath the key of David, he'that openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth, and no man openeth. I know thy works. Behold, I have set. before thee an open door, and no man can shut it." Rev. iii, 7, 8.
Adventists were agreed that the seven churches of Rev. ii and iii, symbolized seven states of the Christian church, covering the entire period from the first advent of Christ to his second appearing, and that the sixth
state addressed represented those who with one united voice proclaimed the coming of Jesus, in the autumn of 1844. This church was about to enter upon a period of great trial. And they were to find relief from it, so far as ascertaining their true position is concerned, by light from the heavenly sanctuary. After the light should come, then would also come the battle upon the shut and open door. Here was seen the connecting link between the work of God in the past Advent movement, present duty to keep the commandments of God, and the future glory and reward. And as these views were taught in vindication of the Advent movement, in connection with the claims of the Sabbath of the fourth commandment, these men, especially those who had given up their Advent experience, felt called upon to oppose. And their opposition, as a general thing, was most violent, bitter, and wicked.
The shut and open door of the heavenly sanctuary constituted the strong point upon which the matter turned. If we were right on the subject of the cleansing of the sanctuary, then the door or ministration of the holy place was shut, and the door or ministration of the most holy place was opened, the 2300 days had ended, the preaching of time was correct, and the entire movement was right. But let our opponents show that we were in error upon the sanctuary question, that Christ had not entered the most holy place to cleanse the sanctuary, then the 2300 days had not ended, the preaching of the time was an error, and the entire movement was wrong. And, again, if the door or ministration of the most holy place was opened, and the faith of the waiting ones was to view Jesus standing before the mercy-seat and the ark of the ten commandments in Heaven, how forcible the arguments for the
perpetuity and claims of the entire law of God, the fourth precept not excepted. The hand of the Lord was with those who took a firm position that the great Advent movement had been in his direct providence, and that the time had come for the Sabbath reform, and many embraced these views. Then it was that our opponents arose in the spirit of persecution, manifesting the wrath of the dragon against those who kept the commandments of God, and labored to open the door that had been shut, and to shut that door which had been opened, and thus put an end to the matter. Hence the strong expressions quoted above-" He that openeth and no man shutteth, and shutteth and no man openeth." "Behold I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it." Nothing can be plainer than that man, or a set of men, near the close of the history of the church, would war against the truth of God in reference to the shut and open door.
And to this day those who retain the spirit of war upon those who keep the commandments of God, make the belief in the shut and open door odious, and charge it all upon Seventh-day Adventists. Many of them, however, are not unaware of the injustice of this. Some of this people did believe in the shut door, in common with the Adventists generally, soon after the passing of the time. Some of us held fast this position longer than those did who gave up their Advent experience, and drew back in the direction of perdition. And God be thanked that we did hold fast to that position till the matter was explained by light from the heavenly sanctuary.
And it may be worthy of notice that although the belief in, and abandonment of, the shut-door position has been general, there have been two distinct and op
posite ways of getting out of it. One class did this by casting away their confidence in the Advent movement, by confessions to those who had opposed and had scoffed at them, and by ascribing the powerful work of the Holy Spirit to human or satanic influences. These got out of the position on the side of perdition.
Another class heeded the many exhortations of Christ and his apostles, applicable to their position, with its trials, dangers, and duties-Watch-Be ye therefore patient-Cast not away therefore your confidence-For ye have need of patience-Hold fast. They waited, watched, and prayed, till light came, and they by faith in the word saw the open door of the heavenly sanctuary, and Jesus there pleading his precious blood before the ark of the most holy place.
But what was that ark? It was the ark of God's testimony, the ten commandments. Reader, please follow these trusting, waiting ones, as they by faith enter the heavenly sanctuary. They take you into the holy place and show you "the candlestick, and the table, and the shewbread," and other articles of furniture. Then they lead you into the most holy where stands Jesus, clad in priestly garments, before the mercy-seat which is upon, and but the cover of, the ark containing the law of God. They lift the cover and bid you look into the sacred ark, and there you behold the ten commandments, a copy of which God gave to Moses. Yes, dear reader, there, safe from the wrath of man and the rage of demons, beside his own holiness, are the ten precepts of God's holy law.
The waiting, watching, praying ones, embraced the fourth precept of that law, and with fresh courage took their onward course to the golden gates of the city of God, cheered by the closing benediction of the Son of
God: "Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city." Thus they came out of the position of the shut door on the side of loyalty to the God of high Heaven, the tree of life, and the eternal city of the redeemed. The reader will not fail to see the difference between their course and getting out of the shut door on the side of perdition. God pity the apostate.
THE SEVENTH ANGEL.
The seventh angel, the last of the seven trumpet angels, had been supposed to be the same as the "last trump," which will awake the righteous dead. But many among the Adventists were about this time taking a different view of the subject. The six former trumpet angels were symbols, and each had occupied a period of time, during which a series of events took place. Why not the seventh be a symbol covering a period of time, during which a series of events might also transpire?
But the scenes connected with the last trump mentioned by the apostle, are represented as transpiring "in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye.” Not so with the events under the sounding of the seventh angel. “But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel,” is the testimony of Rev. x, 7. As this entire chapter has a direct bearing upon the subject of the great Advent movement as symbolized by the three messages of Rev. xiv, I will here give it with a few brief remarks of application.
“And I saw another mighty angel come down from Heaven, clothed with a cloud; and a rainbow was upon his head, and his face was as it were the sun, and his