J.F. Rutherford.

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God's original purpose was that man should have an everlasting home on
the earth as long as he obeyed the divine law. Man having disobeyed
forfeited his right to live on earth, and Jesus, the perfect man, having
by his great sacrifice purchased this right for man, the time must come
when man will be restored to that which was lost.

[537]Some noted teachers of the Bible deny the doctrine of restoration.
Let us observe, then, what else must fail if this doctrine fails. If
there is to be no restoration of man to his original state, then it must
be admitted that the creation of man was and is a failure. Not only
would the creation of man result in a failure, but the very purpose for
which God created the earth must fail. This would mean, then, that his
word has not and will not accomplish what he said. But God being
all-wise, and having unlimited power, his purposes cannot fail. If we
believe the Bible, we will have to believe the doctrine of restoration.
Jehovah has said: "My word that goeth forth out of my mouth ... shall
not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please and
it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it". - Isaiah 55:11.

[538]If there is to be no restoration of man to his original state and
no opportunity for him to be so restored, then the manifestation of
divine justice against Adam amounts to nothing more than God's
destroying the work of his own hands and admitting he was and is unable
to people the earth with a perfect race. If we believe in his
omnipotence, we must believe that he will accomplish his design. Having
made the promise at the time of the sentence of man that the great enemy
should ultimately perish, we may take this as one truth upon which to
hang a hope that something better is to come in the future.

[539]If there is to be no restoration of mankind to original
perfection, then God's promise made to Abraham is meaningless and must
fail, because the express purpose of that promise is the blessing of all
the families of the earth; and that blessing is life. (Genesis 12:3;
22:18; 28:14; Romans 6:23) Not only did Jehovah make this promise to
Abraham, but he bound the promise with his oath; and by these two things
(his word and his oath, both of which are unchangeable) it is impossible
for the promise to fail; but in due time it must be carried out. - Hebrews
6:17,18.

[540]Beyond question, the Scriptures show that Jesus, who in his
prehuman existence was the Logos, left the heavenly courts, his life
being transferred from spirit to human plane, took upon him the nature
and form of man, and became Jesus for the very purpose of saving the
people from their sins. (Matthew 1:21) He came that man might have life.
(John 10:10) He came and gave his life as a ransom, that others might
live. (Matthew 20:28) He was rich and for our sakes became poor, that we
through his poverty might become rich. (2 Corinthians 8:9) When he was
born as a man, the angels of heaven announced glad tidings of great joy
which shall be unto all people, because the purpose of his birth was to
redeem mankind and to restore to them that which had been lost. (Luke
2:9-11) If there is to be no restoration of man to his original state,
then all these purposes of God in sending his beloved Son to earth must
fail. We know that God's word cannot fail.

[541]It was the perfect man Adam who had sinned and by his sin lost the
right to life and the blessings incident to a perfect human life. The
only means provided for satisfying that judgment and releasing mankind
was by substituting another perfect human life. The substitution of
that one perfect human life for the other is called in the Scriptures
the ransom-sacrifice. God made the specific promise that he would ransom
man from the power of the grave, and that he would redeem him from
death. (Hosea 13:14) In keeping with this promise, his Word declares
that 'Jesus, by the grace of God, tasted death for every man'. (Hebrews
2:9) "There is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man
Christ Jesus, who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due
time." - 1 Timothy 2:5,6.

[542]Unless, therefore, mankind has a full and fair opportunity to be
restored to the perfect condition enjoyed by father Adam while in Eden,
then all of these promises of Jehovah are meaningless and must fail. If
they should fail, such would prove that God is not all-powerful. It
would also prove that his promises are not sure; whereas the Scriptures
declare: "All the promises of God, whatever their number, have their
confirmation in him; and for this reason through him also our 'Amen'
acknowledges their truth and promotes the glory of God through our
faith. But he who is making us as well as you stedfast through union
with the anointed one, and has anointed us, is God, and he has also set
his seal upon us, and has put his spirit into our hearts as a pledge and
foretaste of future blessing." - 2 Corinthians 1:20-22, _Weymouth_.

[543]Jesus arose from the dead and ascended on high. The fact of his
resurrection is a guarantee that all men shall have an opportunity for
life. If there is to be no restoration of the human race, then the
resurrection of Jesus and the awakening of others from the dead are
meaningless and for no purpose. If we believe the Scriptures, we must
believe in restoration, because God "hath appointed a day, in the which
he will judge the world in _righteousness_ by that man whom he hath
ordained; whereof he hath given assurance _unto all men_, in that he
hath raised him from the dead". (Acts 17:31) If we do not accept the
doctrine of restoration of the human race, then we must ignore the
positive words of the Apostle, who wrote: "Now is Christ risen from the
dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept. For since by man
came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in
Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. But every man
in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are
Christ's at his coming. Then cometh the end, when he shall have
delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put
down all rule and authority and power. For he must reign, till he hath
put all enemies under his feet. The last enemy that shall be destroyed
is death." - 1 Corinthians 15:20-26.

[544]"The mystery" is the Christ, the anointed class - Jesus the head
and his body members - designated in the Scriptures as the seed of
Abraham, according to the promise. (Colossians 1:26,27) It is the
repeatedly announced purpose of Jehovah that through this seed all the
families of the earth shall be blessed. (Galatians 3:8,16,27,29)
Jehovah has devoted much time and effort to the development of the seed
of promise. If, therefore, there is to be no opportunity for full
restoration of mankind, then the time and effort spent in developing the
seed of Abraham has been wasted, and the promise of blessing through
this seed is meaningless and void. If we believe the Scriptures above
cited, that God's word cannot return unto him void, then we must know
that his purposes cannot fail.

[545]The Lord Jesus went away to prepare a place for his bride, the
church, which is the seed of Abraham through which the promised blessing
of mankind must come. He promised to return and receive his bride unto
himself. He has come again, as the Scriptural evidence herein cited
clearly and conclusively shows. If there is to be no opportunity for the
restoration of man to the condition which Adam enjoyed before he sinned,
then the second coming of the Lord must fail in one of its primary
purposes. That one of the primary purposes of his second coming is the
restoration of the human race, is definitely stated by the inspired
witness: "God ... shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached
unto you; whom the heaven must receive [retain, hold] until the times of
_restitution_ [restoration] of all things, which God hath spoken by the
mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began. For Moses truly
said unto the fathers, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto
you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear in all things
whatsoever he shall say unto you. And it shall come to pass, that every
soul, which will not hear that prophet, shall be destroyed from among
the people. Yea, and all the prophets, from Samuel and those that follow
after, as many as have spoken, have likewise foretold of these days."
- Acts 3: 20-24.

[546]Added to this positive statement of the inspired Apostle is the
testimony of all the prophets foretelling the time coming for the
restoration of the things that were lost through the disobedience of
Adam.

[547]Enoch was the first of the holy prophets. (Jude 14,15) Then
followed Jacob (Genesis 49:10), Moses (Genesis 3:15; 12:3; 13:15; 18:18;
22:18; Deuteronomy 18:15,19; 30:15), Samuel (1 Samuel 2:6), Job
(14:13-15; 33:19-30), David (Psalm 22:27; 30:5; 37:11; 46:10; 67:1-7;
72:3,4,6,10; 86:9; 93:2; 96:11-13; 98:4-9; 104:5), Solomon (Proverbs
2:21; 11:31; Ecclesiastes 1:4), Isaiah (2:2-4; 9:7; 11:4-9; 14:7;
19:22; 25:6-12; 28:17,18; 29:17,18; 33:24), Jeremiah (3:17; 24:7;
31:16,29,34; 32:39,40; 33:8,9; 46:27; 50:4,5), Ezekiel (11:19;
16;55,61-63; 18:2,31,32; 28:26; 34:25-28; 36:26,27,29,30,35; 37:24;
39:29), Daniel (2:44; 7:27), Hosea (2:18,21; 3:5; 13:14), Joel (2:22,32),
Amos (9:11,12; Acts 15:14-18), Obadiah (verse 21), Jonah (chapter 4),
Micah (4:1-5,8), Nahum (1:15; 2:3-6), Habakkuk (2:14), Zephaniah (2:11;
3:9,13), Haggai (2:7), Zechariah (2:11; 3:10; 8:3,8,12,15,21,22;
9:10,17; 14:9,11,20), Malachi (1:11; 3:11; 4:2), and John the Baptist.
(John 1:29; Matthew 11:9,11) This entire array of holy witnesses,
without a single exception, unite in testifying to the coming days of
restoration of man.[A]

[Footnote A: See discussion of this in "The Finished Mystery", pages
62-95.]

[548]The reasonable mind cannot conceive that Jehovah would develop a
new creation and glorify that creation by committing to the head of it
all power in heaven and in earth without assigning the new creation some
work to do with reference to man. The very purpose of the glorification
of the new creation, the church, is that the members thereof, directed
by the head, the Lord Jesus, might judge and bless and restore the
families of the earth. There could be no judgment without a trial; and a
trial means an opportunity. Jesus plainly said: "In the regeneration
when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall
sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel". (Matthew
19:28) Here is the positive statement of regeneration. Regeneration
means the act of reproducing or giving life anew to a creature.

[549]Again it is written concerning those who participate in the first
resurrection and thereby become members of the royal family of heaven:
"Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection; on
such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God
and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years," which
thousand-year reign is for the purpose of restoring mankind. - Revelation
20:6; Acts 17:31.

[550]Again says the Apostle: "Do ye not know that the saints shall
judge the world?" (1 Corinthians 6:2) Again Jesus plainly declared that
at his second coming he would sit upon his throne of glory, and before
him should be gathered all nations, and he would separate them and
reward them according to their obedience to his laws. (Matthew 25:31-46)
If the church, Jesus the head and his body members glorified, endowed
with power and authority, are not to act as the great deliverer and
uplifter of the human race, then why should they be clothed with such
power and authority? If there is to be no opportunity for the
restoration of mankind, then God's plan with reference to the new
creation and its work must fail. He has positively announced that one of
the very purposes for calling and developing the new creation is the
blessing of mankind. - Genesis 12:3; Galatians 3:16,27,29.

[551]"I the Lord have called thee in righteousness, and will hold thine
hand, and will keep thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people,
for a light unto the gentiles; to open the blind eyes, to bring out the
prisoners from the prison [the grave, condition of death], and them that
sit in darkness out of the prison house." (Isaiah 42:6,7) "Thus saith
the Lord, In an acceptable time have I heard thee, and in a day of
salvation have I helped thee; and I will preserve thee, and give thee
for a covenant of the people, to establish the earth, to cause to
inherit the desolate heritages." - Isaiah 49:8.

[552]Thus we see that every purpose of the divine plan points to the
restoration of mankind. Every vital doctrine speaks of that coming time
for man's blessing. Every other string of the harp of God harmoniously
blends with the music of the tenth string, the restoration of man. It
must be admitted by every honest student of the Bible that all the
fundamental doctrines point to God's purpose of offering restitution
blessings to the entire human race, and that the obedient ones will
enjoy the blessings upon the earth. And now let us examine some more
specific texts further corroborating the already strong proof that
restitution is the great object of the divine plan relative to the human
race.

[553]God made a covenant with the nation of Israel, by which covenant he
promised to give life to all who would keep that covenant. (Leviticus
18:5) The Israelites, like others of Adam's offspring, having been born
sinners and imperfect, could not keep this covenant; therefore could not
get life through it. The specific reasons are: (1) Because the
ransom-sacrifice had not yet been given; (2) because of the
imperfections of the human race and the imperfections of Moses the
mediator of the covenant it yielded life to none of the nation of
Israel. (Romans 8:3) There was a two-fold purpose for this law covenant
being made. One was, that it might serve as a schoolmaster to lead
Israel to Christ (Galatians 3:24); and the other, to foreshadow a better
or new law covenant arrangement which God would make through his beloved
Son Christ Jesus. (Hebrews 10:1; 8:5) Christ is the great high priest;
and by his fulfilling the divine purposes, he is now the mediator of a
better covenant, the new covenant, which God purposes to make for man's
benefit. (Hebrews 8:6; 9:15) When the church is glorified and the
kingdom set up, then the blood (merit) of Christ will be applied for the
sealing of the new covenant, through which covenant promised blessings
are to be extended to the human race.

[554]After these days, then - after the gathering out of the Christ class
or new creation - this covenant is to be made, as St. Paul states:
"Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, when I will make a new covenant
with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah; not according to
the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day when I took them
by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; because they
continued not in my covenant, and I regarded them not, saith the Lord.
For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel
_after those days_, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind,
and write them in their hearts; and I will be to them a God, and they
shall be my people; and they shall not teach every man his neighbor, and
every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for all shall know me,
from the least to the greatest. For I will be merciful to their
unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no
more." - Hebrews 8:8-12.

[555]Under this new covenant the whole human race shall have the
opportunity to come back to God through Christ the mediator. Mark that
it is plainly stated that during the time of restoration 'God will put
his laws into their minds, and write them in their hearts, and will be
to them a God and they shall be to him a people; for he will be merciful
to them, and their sins and iniquities he will remember no more'. This
could mean nothing less than the taking away of the imperfections of the
obedient and restoring them to a righteous condition.

[556]Following the glorification of the church and the making of the new
covenant, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, David, Barak, Jepthae, and the prophets
(all of whom we term faithful worthies), the Lord has promised shall be
brought forth from the tomb, being given a better resurrection.
(Hebrews 11) These shall be princes, rulers, or legal representatives of
the Christ, in the earth; and through them the Lord will establish a
righteous government in the earth. (Psalm 45:16; Isaiah 32:1) And then
"out of Zion [the Christ, invisible to men] shall go forth the law, and
the word of the Lord from Jerusalem" - the headquarters of Christ's
visible representatives.

[557]"It shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the
Lord's house shall be established in the top of the mountains
[kingdoms], and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall
flow unto it. And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go
up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he
will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of
Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.
And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people; and
they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into
pruninghooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither
shall they learn war any more." - Isaiah 2:2-4; Micah 4:1-4.


THE LIVING FIRST

[558]St. Paul emphatically states that the Lord Jesus shall judge the
quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom. (2 Timothy 4:1) In
this he is corroborated by St. Peter (1 Peter 4:5) The word _quick_ here
means the living, those who have some measure of life; and the text is
so rendered in the Weymouth translation. When the new covenant is made
and the Lord begins to deal with the people, it will be with the living
first. It would be unreasonable to suppose that he would first awaken
the dead and deal with them, and then with the living later. Jesus,
speaking of the great time of trouble with which the present world
reaches a final conclusion, indicated that many human beings will pass
through the trouble. (Matthew 24:21,22) The prophet Zechariah informs us
that a portion of the people will be brought through the fiery trouble,
and refined, and then will call upon the name of the Lord and he will
hear them. (Zechariah 13:8,9) Those who learn of the Lord's kingdom and
readily put themselves under its direction and become obedient to the
laws and rules of his new kingdom will be the ones who will be blessed
and acknowledged of the Lord, and rapidly restored.

[559]Further corroborative proof is given by the prophet Isaiah that
restoration will begin with those living on the earth at the beginning
of the Messianic reign. There are millions of persons now living who
have a sincere and honest desire for righteousness. Many of these love
the Lord to the extent of their knowledge of him; but their knowledge is
so limited because they have been taught so much error concerning his
character that they are filled with fear and dread. They have not
sufficient knowledge of him to have real faith. They have not gone on to
the point of consecration. They have heard of the Lord's second coming
and hope for something better. They realize that there is great trouble
in the world and see no human remedy for it. They long for a complete
and proper relief.

[560]To such Jehovah says through his Prophet: "Be strong, fear not:
behold, your God will come with vengeance, even God with a recompence;
he will come and save you. Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened,
and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped. Then shall the lame man leap
as an hart, and the tongue of the dumb sing." (Isaiah 35:4-6) These words
could have no application to persons who are in their graves, and must
exclusively apply to those who are living at the beginning of the
Messianic reign. Furthermore, when the dead are raised up, they will not
come forth from the graves minus arms, or legs, or other parts of the
body; but 'God will give to each a body as it pleaseth him' (1 Corinthians
15:38) - a reasonably sound body. And as a man renders himself in
obedience to righteousness, his body will develop toward perfection.
There are now on earth millions who are blind, or deaf, or lame, or
dumb, or cripples in some form; and these are the ones to whom the
Prophet refers. The kingdom being in operation, as these come to a
knowledge of God's great arrangements and obey the righteous laws under
the new covenant, they will develop new arms, legs, eyes; be given the
power of speech, and gradually develop a sound body.

[561]When these great miracles begin to be performed in the earth, then
the most skeptical, it is to be hoped, will believe that the Lord Jesus
reigns. The miracles which he performed while on earth in opening the
eyes of the blind and healing the sick were merely examples of what he
will do in his glorified condition. Because it is both unreasonable and
unscriptural to expect that the dead will come forth from their graves
in a maimed, deaf, and dumb condition; but will come forth with
reasonably sound bodies, these words of the Prophet conclusively prove
that restoration will begin with those who are living on the earth at
the beginning of the Messianic reign.

[562]Concerning the work of the Christ of restoring the peoples of
earth, and looking forward to that time, St. Paul writes; "The whole
creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now, waiting for
the manifestation of the sons of God" - the kingdom class. (Romans
8:19,22) Those who thus travail in pain, groan, wait, and hope for
something better, could not be the dead ones, but those who are living
at the inauguration of the new order. There are millions now on earth
who are looking and hoping for a better time, and groaning for that
relief. They understand not the mystery of God. They do not understand
how his sons constitute the seed of Abraham for their blessing; yet they
hope for something.

[563]During the World War millions were maimed and disfigured in various
ways, and many deprived of one or both arms or legs. Because the Lord is
now present, putting his kingdom into operation, it is to be expected
that many of these crippled and maimed ones will be among the first to
receive the restoration blessings. As they come to a knowledge of the
fact that the Lord is giving these blessings, and render themselves in
obedience to his righteous rule, they will be thus blessed. Happy will
be their portion when they begin to be restored. Joyful will be their
friends and loved ones to see such restoration blessings being
ministered unto them.

[564]While the trouble in the earth is ever increasing and the suffering
of the poor increases, some are manifesting a greater amount of sympathy
and consideration; while others are becoming more unreasonable and harsh
toward the poor. The Lord indicates what class he will favor in this
time of trouble, saying: "Blessed is he that considereth the poor: the
Lord will deliver him in the time of trouble. The Lord will preserve
him, and keep him alive; and he shall be blessed upon the earth." (Psalm
41:1,2) Surely this could apply to none other than those now living in
this time of trouble, because when restitution blessings begin the time
of trouble will be over.

[565]Upon the earth there are now, according to the best statistics
obtainable, approximately 1,700,000,000 persons who have a measure of
life. The proof cited herein shows that the old world (social and
political order) ended and began to pass away in 1914, and that this
will be completed in a few years and righteousness fully established.
The Scriptural evidence further is that many will be brought through
this time of trouble, and these will be the ones with whom the Lord will
first begin the work of restoration.

[566]The first world ended with a great flood, in which a few persons,
to wit, eight, were saved by being carried over in the ark from the old
to the new order of things that God established immediately after the
flood under Noah. This was an example or picture representing the
passing away of the present evil world and showing that many will be
carried over from the old to the new. When God had delivered Noah and
his family from the perils of the deluge and Noah builded an altar
before the Lord and offered a sacrifice, the Lord made promise to Noah,


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