Image of Momentary and Lasting Sorrow and Joy

A cross in the center with images of cities and nature surrounding it

English Translation

Top Title: Image of the Temporal and Eternal Sorrow and Joy

On the Cross: Jesus says I am the way, the truth, the life.

On right-side cloud: There is a river of life, on the two sides of the river there is the tree of life, whose leaves can heal all people

On left-side cloud: Because he waits for the city built on a foundation, which is built by God.

Right Couplet: Look closely at the world’s sorrows and joys, the people of glory eventually return to sorrow.

Left Couplet: Look up at heaven’s joy and blessings, only through relying on Jesus will one receive eternal salvation.

Description: The drawings in this image express a two-pronged message in the Christian Bible. As the Apostle Paul said, “what is seen is transient, what is unseen is eternal” (2 Corinthians 4:18), this image is divided into two levels with a cross in between. The lower half of the picture shows a crumbling fortress, indicating that although a fortress is built strong, one day it will fall (Hebrews 13:14, and 11:10). Under the foot of the fortress lies a coffin, which symbolizes the mortality of all humans on earth (Psalms 90:10, Job 14:10). The old woman with a walking stick coming out of the city gates and the elderly man sitting under the tree symbolize that all humans energy is weak (Acts 12:3-6). The decaying trees and falling branches symbolize the trees withering away (Ezekiel 31, Daniel 4:4-27). The little graves on top of the hill symbolize the fact that human flesh will one day return to the earth (Matthew 16:26, 1 John 2:7, Acts 12:7, Hebrews 9:27, John 5:28-29, Daniel 12:20). The house on fire in the middle of the woods reminds that disasters happen when people are not paying attention (Proverbs 27:1, James 4:13-14). What is written above reminds us that all that we see, all that we have made, and all that we are do not last. If all created things do not last, how can we on earth inherit eternal blessings? According to the Christian Bible, the Lord Jesus can grant eternal life to all who believe in Him. As a result, the center of this painting features a cross, indicating that all can gain eternal life through the works of the Lord Jesus Christ on the cross (John 5:24, 637-40). Beside the cross there is a bridge. The paths next to the bridge symbolize people’s repentance and faith (Acts 20:21). The cross reaches high into the clouds, which means that the Lord Jesus’ cross will unite heaven and earth. The city gate in the upper half of the picture refer to the gates of Heaven (Hebrews 11:16, Revelation 22:14 and 21:27). There are many people entering the gates of Heaven (1 Corinthians 15:54-57, Revelation 7:13-14). On top of a hill in the midst of the city is a throne, and the cross and the crown above the throne symbolize the Lord Jesus’ victory over death, having the power to grant eternal life (Revelation 21:4-5). The rays of light emanating from the throne indicate Jesus’ glorious light (Revelations 4:2-3 and 21:23). The river that flows from the throne symbolizes the river of life, the trees beside the river are the medicine for souls, and the houses next to it are the eternal homes of peace (Revelation 22:1-2, John 14:2, Revelation 7:16-17). Looked at in this way, the upper level depicts the heavenly blessing that will never fail or wither away.

Bottom Inscription: Cat. No. 1016 “The Temporal and the Eternal” by Mrs. W.G. Davis, Printed by Shanghai Business Printing Press, Published by The Religious Tract Society, Hankow & Shanghai; Hankou Poyang Street, Shanghai Yuanmingyuan Rd; Published by the Religious Tract Society

Simplified Transcription







注释:这图中所画的各物乃是表明基督教圣经中的两宗要意。意思就是使徒保罗说的“所见的是暂时的,所不见的是永远的”(哥林多后4:18),所以这图分为上下两层,中间立一十字架。下层所画的破烂的城墙是说城墙虽筑的坚固,后来必要倾倒(希伯来书13:14, 又11:10)。靠近城墙脚下的棺材就是说生在世界上的人都必要死(诗篇19:10,约伯记14::10)。往城门里出来手持拐杖的婆婆和树木下面坐着的老人是表明凡人的气力必要衰弱(传道书12:3-6)。所有腐朽的树木折断的枝子是指着树木的荣华年久必凋落(以西结书31全,但以理书4:4-27)。小山上的坟墓是指着人的肉身都必终归于土(马太福音16:26,约翰一书2:7,传道书12:7,希伯来书9:27,约翰福音5:28-29,但以理书12:20)。树林中的房屋被火焚烧是指着人在不觉的时候忽有祸事发生(箴言27:1,雅各书4:13-14)。以上所说的足使我们知道凡我们所看见的物或是自生的或由人所造成的,连各人自己都是不长久的。你看万物都是这样的不长久,我们世界上的人怎能够得着永远的福气呢?按基督教的圣经所说,主耶稣能赐永生给凡信靠他的人。因此,这图的正当中画的一个十字架指示着世人都可以因着主耶稣这十字架上的功劳取得永生(约翰福音5:24又6:37-40)。这十字架的旁边画的有桥。桥两边的不子是指这人的悔改和信心(使徒行传20:21)。十字架顶高入于云中是说主耶稣的十字架将世界与天堂联合了。上层所画的城门指天门(希伯来书11:16,启示录22:14又21:27)。进入天门的人也多(哥林多前15:54-57,启示录7:13-14)。城内的山顶上有宝座,宝座上的十字架和冠冕指主耶稣胜过了死亡,有赐永生的权柄(启示录20:4-5)。宝座上的虹指主耶稣的荣光(启示录4:2-3又21:23)。往宝座前流出来的河水指生命河,两边的树林指灵药,房屋指安宅(启示录22:1-2,约翰福音14:2,启示录7:16-17)。这样看来上层所画的都是指着那永不毁坏的天福。


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