TO the, children of Eve, whose Son should bruise the head of the serpent; to the children of Abraham, who said, "My son, God will provide himself a Lamb for a burnt offering;" to the children of Light, who "Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world;" to "the children of God by Faith in Christ Jesus:" to the brethren of the Man who is the First-born Brother from the dead, this offering of Faith and Hope and Love in the Living and Loving Son of man, who is In the presence of God for us, is affectionately inscribed and commended, with the fervent prayer that our Father will bless you and it.
WHEN the work on the Priesthood of God's Anointed was written, I believed it was the last book I should write. This belief abided with me until three days ago, when I was made willing to write the things which the Lord had shown unto me.
It was in this way: At the home of brother C. M. Rite, in the city of Nashville, I retired Saturday night, October 14, 1905, and was given a refreshing sleep until midnight, when I awoke with a comforting realization that "The Lord is good," and for three hours my wakeful spirit was shown wonderful things in the holy Scriptures, and I was led out to behold divine visions or views of illustrious persons in the Bible, men whom God in Iris infinite wisdom and goodness was pleased to raise up and ordain as great leaders and examples in their lives and characters, to fulfill his holy purpose. The first and chiefest of these was the Man of God's right hand, whom he made strong for himself; the Child that was horn unto us, the Son that was given unto us, whose very name is "Wonderful," the Man Christ Jesus, the one Mediator between God and men. In his names and Person, offices and work, life and death, be was at once spotless and perfect, wonderful and glorious. Not only was he the complete embodiment of sinless Manhood, but as well the brightness of God's glory and the express image of his Person in his own lovely Person. Lie was the least of all, yet the greatest of all. He came into the world and the kingdom of God as a little infant in the arms of his blessed mother, and at the same time he was equal with God. In vision the holy child Jesus was shown to me in the manger, in the temple of God, in the Jordan, in the wilderness, on the holy mount of transfiguration with Moses and Elijah, on the cross, in the tomb, and upon his Father's throne of glory in holy Heaven.
After this inspiring view of the heavenly Man, then It was given me to see other very remarkable persons In the Bible record, whom God ordained to go before Christ, as types of him, to prefigure his coming to earth in the flesh in the fullness of God's time, and to represent or personate Christ in his wonderful official work, his humiliation, his atoning sufferings and death, his resurrection and ascension to glory, as the Redeemer and savior of his people from their sins. But no man was sufficient to be a full type of the Man whom God made higher than the heavens, his Anointed and Holy One. Therefore God was pleased to raise up a number of notable men, before he sent forth ills Son, and make them in their appointed sphere and way figures and sure pledges to his chosen people that the Redeemer should come to Zion, having salvation In his wisdom and love God did this for the comfort of his afflicted people.
In vision this was blessedly shown to me, and there passed in review before me typical persons of the Old Testament, one after another, all testifying of Christ, as all the Scriptures do; - Adam, Melchisedec, Isaac, Joseph, Moses, Joshua, Aaron, Jonah Boaz and David. The view that was given of all these typical men was so wonderful that I longed to show it to the faithful in Christ, that they might also be glad and rejoice in the wonderful revelation that God has mercifully given us of his Son. My thought then was to speak upon this theme in our meeting that day, if it was the will of the Lord. But it was not, and my mind was turned to another subject. It was made evident to me that several discourses would not be enough to set forth the meaning of those personal types of the Holy Son of man. Then the impression came forcibly upon me to WRITE the things which had been shown to me of the Lord, and I am made to feel that it is a labor of faith and love which the Lord has laid upon me. and trusting that he will so enable me to his declarative glory, I obey.
It is all a new and wonderful experience to me, as I am nearing four score years, my health very infirm, and I have felt that my gospel ministry of fifty-one years is near its close. I am in the hand of the Lord, to do with me as seemeth him good.
October 17th, 1905.