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„There is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; and hid, that shall not be known. What I tell you in darkness, speak ye in light; and what ye hear in the ear, preach ye upon the housetops.” Matt. 10:26,27
The greater portion of divine truth has been expressed under cover, so that its full import is not always discernable. The Bible abounds in symbols, figures and allegories, and the same is as true of Jesus’ teachings as of any other portions of the Word. He opened his mouth in parables and dark sayings, so that those who heard him, and even his disciples, often said, We cannot tell what he saith. But the above assurance of Jesus is that all will in due time be made manifest.
Several objects have been served by the hiding, and gradual unfolding of truth—first, the successful development of God’s plan; secondly, the saving of his children from discouragement because of the length of time involved; thirdly, the trial of the faith of those who believe.
The revealing of truth, as we have seen, has gradually progressed from age to age, and God’s children in every age have had a sufficient revelation of truth to enable them to carry out their part of his plan, including such knowledge of future things as would encourage and help them. It has also been a part of God’s plan that truth once revealed, expounded, or made manifest, should not be lost or forgotten, but that it should be treasured up and recorded for the generations following. Hence, all his children of every age have been taught to bear witness to the truth, both to their own and succeeding generations, according to their ability and opportunity. And it is through the faithfulness of past witnesses—the Patriarchs, Prophets, Jesus, the Apostles, and some of later date, that we have our present knowledge.
To us, as to them, comes the commission—”What I tell you in darkness, speak ye in light; and what ye hear in the ear, preach ye upon the housetops.” With the blessed knowledge always comes the responsibility of making it known. Strange to say, the good news is seldom well-received, and never has been. It is hated, ridiculed and rejected by those it comes to bless; and those who bear witness to the truth are persecuted, many of them even unto death. This has been the case in every age. Every witness has to some extent suffered for his testimony, and it is still the case. When all is revealed, nothing will remain covered; then the knowledge of the Lord shall fill the whole earth. Every type, and figure, and parable, and dark saying will in due time bear a testimony to all.
And while it will be thus with the truth, it will also be true of those who bear the truth, and indeed of all men, good and bad; for there is no character now covered that shall not be revealed. Upright and godly characters are now hidden under misunderstanding and misrepresentation, while many base and detestable characters are hidden under a fair, deceiving exterior. „The disciple is not above his master, nor the servant above his lord. … If they have called the master of the house Beelzebub, how much more them of his household.”
It is a matter of comparatively small concern what men may say of us now. They will say hard things of us even against their own convictions, though not unfrequently because they believe them; and this the faithful witness must endure; and while he should take heed to let the light of truth shine through a transparent character and a clear and positive testimony, he may commit his way unto the Lord, for „he shall bring forth thy righteousness as the light, and thy judgment as the noon-day.” „Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him.” Psa. 37:5,6,7.
In the issue of Feb., ’85, it was shown from Bible testimony that character will in every case in due time be revealed and meet its just recompense. The masks will all be taken off, and every man will be estimated both by God and man according to the real merit of his motives. Already we see this revealing of character and motives in the church. Trial and persecution for the truth’s sake is making it manifest. For instance, how many whose works once led us to esteem them as very zealous for the Lord’s cause, now prove to be rejectors and even opposers of his truth, because of its unpopularity. Such declare plainly that their chief incentive to good works is the praise of men, or the success of some sect or scheme of their own. What a low incentive, and how unworthy of a child of God. But they have their reward, while we choose to wait for ours. And so says Paul:
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„Every man’s work shall be made manifest; for the day [of trial] shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire [trial]; and the fire shall try every man’s work, of what sort it is.” 1 Cor. 3:13.
Those found worthy in the trial, whose motives are those of true zeal and love for the Lord’s cause, will receive the great reward. For such characters he is now searching and applying the tests. In similar ways character will be made manifest in every case in due time. It is particularly true now of the Church, because this is its day of trial; and it will be true of the world also in its judgment or trial day—the Millennial age.
And further, not only will the character and motives of every man appear in their true light, and the truths of the Bible, hitherto covered and hidden under types and symbols and dark sayings, be revealed, but truth in every sense must be made manifest. The truths of nature, God’s other great book, will also come to light, and are coming to light now more rapidly than ever before, [see last two issues, „The Undefiled One,”] and science and God’s written revelation will be seen to be at perfect agreement; both being ordained for the blessing and elevation of mankind. The light from our Lord’s presence will probe and penetrate every secret thing, rewarding the good and purging out the evil. Already men are beginning to be blessed by the increasing light on every subject. God’s due time has come to turn on the light, and it is touching every department of human interest—religion, science, philosophy and art. In religion it is revealing the true and exposing the false. Every branch of science and philosophy has already felt its genial touch. Notice, for instance, the great advancement in the science of medicine, and how the world is being blessed by it; the great discoveries in nature and the wonderful inventions of art. Mark also the growth of general intelligence and the blessings it is bringing with it.
Yes, the truth—the light—is God’s means of blessing. Praise and honor and thanksgiving to him who is turning on the light! Time was when it was but a faint, glimmering ray—and, thank God, the world was never left without a ray—but according to his infinite wisdom and love he has been turning it up higher and higher age after age, and now he has sent his Anointed, the great source of light, and soon the blessed rays of light shall flood the world. It is only obscured now by the clouds and darkness that are round about him; but even through the darkness comes the lightning flashes of his truth. MRS. C. T. R.
— November, 1885 —