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Sixth Edition, 1915
By Dr. John Thomas (first edition written 1861)



Chapter 21

8. The Twelve Foundations




“And the wall of the city had TWELVE FOUNDATIONS; and on them the Names of THE TWELVE APOSTLE Of the Lamb”.


The names upon the foundation-stones of the city wall, indicate that each stone is representative of an apostle, as a foundation-element of the New Jerusalem Body Politic. Each of these great polished gems, or precious “living stones”, would be beautiful alone; but how much more beautiful when decorated, embellished, or adorned, by all manner of precious stones beside. The significance of this symbol is expressed in Paul’s words to them in Thessalonica whom he had been instrumental in “sealing in their foreheads,” and had brought into fellow-citizenship with the saints of Israel. “What,” saith he, “is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? Are not even ye before our Lord Jesus Christ in his presence? Ye are our glory and joy” (1 Thess. 2:19,20). They were not “wood, hay, and stubble,” but “gold, and silver, and precious stones”. Such destructible materials as wood, hay, and stubble; or ignoble vessels of wood and earth, are useless; and unfit for incorporation in the glorified Bride of the Lamb; it is only those who can stand fire “in a day of Inspection,” en hemera episkopes, who will find themselves the “stones of fire” by which she is adorned for her Divine husband. Such were many, not all, of the apostles’ converts to the faith. They will rejoice together in the presence of Christ, the Jasper Light and Wall of the great city; and those who have been brought to the obedience of the faith by an apostle, or by the apostolic teaching, and are declared worthy in the day of fiery revelation (1 Cor. 3:13); will be to an apostle-foundation gem of sparkling glory the garnishment of precious stones upon the foundations of the city.

The elements of the wall, and the precious gems, are built upon the jewels (Mal. 3:17) of the foundation. The reality incorporated into this symbol is found in the words — “Ye are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner; in whom all the building fitly framed together groweth into a holy temple in the Lord; in whom ye also are builded together for a habitation of the Deity through the Spirit;” which Spirit, in the Holy Jerusalem Association of the Saints, issues from the Deity out of heaven, and flows through every member of it, as “a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal”.






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