[R2067 : page 277]



Question. M. DAWN claims that God's promise to Abraham (Gen. 15:5; 22:17) included both the heavenly and the earthly "seed"--the former represented by the "stars of heaven" and the latter by the "sand upon the seashore." Do you not think this strains the sense, since the sands and stars represent an almost innumerable number, while the heavenly seed (the Church) will be a comparatively small number--probably 144,000?

Answer. No; this does not seem to us a strained use of the language; but on the contrary both a reasonable and a beautiful application of the figures of speech used. We must remember that the Apostle Paul, when describing the resurrection of the Church (1 Cor. 15:41,42), uses this same figure, saying, "as star differeth from star in glory, so also is the [special or chief] resurrection of the [special or chief] dead." The same figure is used in Daniel.--Dan. 12:3.

Since the "great company" of Rev. 7:9will be spiritual, heavenly, and not an earthly or restitution class, it would properly be included in the star figure, --as well as the "little flock" which alone will receive the Kingdom and the divine or immortal nature.

These figures of speech are only approximate. We cannot suppose that the earthly seed will be as numerous as the grains of sand. "As the sand" gives the thought of resemblance and not of identical likeness or numbers.