Explanation of Chart
Representing the Plan of the Ages
"Write down the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that
everyone may read it fluently." Habakkuk 2:2
THE PLAN of our loving Almighty Creator, as found in the inspired scriptures (the Bible), is beautifully portrayed on the chart of the ages. The chart shows the progressive character of God's plan from the creation of man to the endless ages of eternity. By placing the inspired scriptures in the proper dispensations and ages, the chronological time features and prophetic statements found in the Bible become meaningful.
The upward steps which must be taken by one who wishes to gain life on any plane are beautifully shown on the chart as represented by the different planes. During the Gospel Age, a few walk in the narrow way which leads from the human to the divine nature. After the Gospel Age comes to a full end, all the human race, who have not walked in the narrow way, will have the opportunity to go upward on the highway of holiness from the plane of death to the plane of perfect human life.Matthew 7:13,14; Isaiah 35:8
The student who becomes very familiar with the chart of the ages is enabled to understand the Bible in a way which is not possible without the use of this valuable visual aid. As one studies the inspired word of the loving heavenly Father, it is necessary to place each passage at the right time in the plan of God and on the correct plane. The following explanation of the letters of the alphabet and the numbers used on the chart will be helpful to the meek who are seeking to do the will of the heavenly Creator and his dear son, Christ Jesus.
The Capital Letters On The Chart
The "world" that was (the first heavens and the first earth), under the ministration of angels, lasted from the creation of Adam to the flood.2 Peter 3:5,6; Genesis 2:7; 7:11,12; Hebrews 2:5
"This present evil world" (the second heavens and the second earth), under the limited usurped control of the adversary, began at the flood and will fully end at the time the great time of trouble now raging in the earth is terminated and Satan is fully bound.John 18:36; Galatians 1:4; 2 Peter 3:7: Ephesians 2:2; 1 Peter 5:8; Psalm 46:9
The "world to come" (the third heavens and the third earth), wherein dwelleth righteousness, is under divine administration. This dispensation, or "world without end", has already begun before the second dispensation has come to a full end. During the transition period from the second to the third dispensation, the new Jerusalem (the new heavens) gradually comes down from God out of heaven. As soon as divine intervention terminates the trouble, righteousness will begin to prevail with the establishment of the earthly phase of the kingdom.Hebrews 2:5; 2 Peter 3:13; Isaiah 45:17; Revelation 21:1,2; 2 Corinthians 12:1-4
During the Patriarchal Age (the first age of the second dispensation), the Almighty God dealt with certain "friends" such as Noah, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. This age, which began at the time the first dispensation came to an end (at the time of the flood) and the second dispensation began, lasted until the death of Jacob.Genesis 6:8; 7:1; James 2:23; Genesis 22:16-18; 26:4; 28:14; 48:21
During the Jewish Age (the second age of the second dispensation), the Almighty Creator recognized the 12 sons of Jacob (Israel) as his peculiar people. Through typical sacrifices, Israel was typically "a holy nation" separated from other nations for a particular purpose. National favor to Israel, which began at the death of Jacob, lasted until that nation rejected and crucified Jesus, our dear Redeemer. Following this rejection of the dear Savior, fleshly Israel, in the course of time, was uprooted from their land and scattered among the Gentile nations.Amos 3:2; Deuteronomy 14:2; John 1:11; Matthew 10:5,6; Luke 19:41-44
The harvest of the Jewish Age, a time of sifting and trouble, overlapped the beginning work of the Gospel Age.
The Gospel Age (the third age of the second dispensation) is that period of time from the consecration of Jesus at 30 years of age until the spiritual phase of the kingdom is fully set up. The "better sacrifices" of this age make atonement for the sins of the world. At the time Jesus consecrated to do his heavenly Father's will, he entered the narrow way which led to immortality. Three and one-half years later the holy Spirit reached the Jewish disciples of Jesus. Another 3 1/2 years passed before the Gentile consecrated believers came under the one anointing of the spirit. Those who follow in the footsteps of Jesus faithfully unto death, have the hope of receiving glory, honor, and immortality.Hebrews 10:7,9; Acts 2:1-5; 15:13,14; 2 Peter 1:4; Matthew 13:37-43
Like the Jewish Age, the Gospel Age ends with a harvest. The harvest of the Gospel Age is also a time of sifting and trouble.
The Messianic Age (the first age of the third dispensation) is the period of the thousand year presence of Christ. The work of this incoming age begins before the work of the Gospel Age fully comes to an end. Like the Gospel Age, the Millennial Age begins in stages. The transition period from the second dispensation to the third dispensation is the time for the establishment of the spiritual phase of the kingdom. This overlapping period is a time of sifting, sorting, testing, and trouble such as never before occurred. At the time the second dispensation comes to a full end, the earthly phase of the kingdom will have its beginning. The work of destroying all enemies and bringing all the willing and obedient under the headship of Christ will have been accomplished by the close of this resurrection or restitution age.2 Peter 3:8; Acts 3:19-21; 1 Thessalonians 4:16,17; Revelation 11:18; Daniel 12:1; Jeremiah 1:10; 1 Corinthians 15:25-28
Ages To ComeH
Following the first age (the Messianic Age) of the third dispensation or "world", the endless ages of perfection, blessedness, and happiness will begin. At the beginning of the second age of the third dispensation, a "little season" will be necessary for the testing of restored mankind. During this testing period, Satan will be permitted to test restored mankind who benefited by the lessons of experience during the period of the reign of sin and death. Adam and Eve lacked this experience and failed at the time of their testing, while still in the garden of Eden, at which time Satan deceived mother Eve.1 Corinthians 15:24-28; Isaiah 45:17,18; Ephesians 2:7; Revelation 20:3,7; Psalm 150:6
Glory of Power or OfficeK
During the Gospel Age, the prospective body members of Christ are being prepared for the high honor and privilege of living and reigning with Christ. Those who suffer with Christ, being more than overcomers, will share our Lord's glory of power or office, as shown by plane K on the chart of the ages.1 Peter 2:9; 2 Timothy 2:11,12; Romans 8:37; Revelation 22:17
Those who are faithful in carrying out the terms of their covenant by sacrifice, in their due time and order, are born of the spirit. This spirit birth, of those previously begotten of the spirit to the divine nature, is the full entrance into life as a divine spirit being. The resurrection of the body members of Christ to the divine nature occurs early in the Millennial or resurrection age. The "dead in Christ" (those saints who slept down through the Gospel Age) are resurrected first, and then the feet members who are alive and remain, upon finishing their earthly walk in the narrow way faithfully unto death, are immediately resurrected, as divine spirit beings, and united with the other resurrected saints, as shown on plane L, during the transition period. The resurrected saints are involved in the same kingdom work which engaged their time and attention while still begotten of the spirit.1 Corinthians 15:51-54; 1 Thessalonians 4:16,17; Revelation 14:13
During the Gospel Age, many are called to become the body members of Christ, but only a few make a covenant with God by sacrifice. The ones who present their bodies a living sacrifice delight to do the Father's will. The heavenly Father, of his own will, begets these fully consecrated ones, with the word of truth, thus enabling them to become a kind of firstfruits of his creatures. All who give up their human will and accept the will of God, during the acceptable time of sacrifice, are begotten of the spirit to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled which is reserved in heaven for the faithful, as shown on plane M.Matthew 20:16; Ephesians 4:4; 1 Corinthians 1:26-29; Romans 12:1; Hebrews 10:7,9; James 1:17,18; 1 Peter 1:3,4
Human PerfectionFriendshipTentative JustificationN
Adam, a perfect man before his disobedience, Jesus, a perfect man at the first advent, and the world of mankind, restored to perfection during the mediatorial reign of Christ, are shown on plane N.Genesis 2:7; Luke 1:35; Isaiah 35:8
From the time of Abel to John the Baptist, many men and women exercised faith in the promises of the Almighty Creator. They believed God, and it was imputed unto them for righteousness. These were considered "friends" of God on account of their faith, as shown on plane N.Hebrews 11:4-40; James 2:23
During the Gospel Age, many have repented of sin and accepted Jesus as their Redeemer. Some of these have gone a step further and consecrated to righteous living. Those on plane N have a measure of "peace" but are not at peace with God until such time a covenant is made with God by sacrifice. One who has accepted Jesus as his Redeemer is "tentatively" justified until such time he is invited to present his body a living sacrifice. If he responds by giving up his human will and accepting the will of God, his "tentative" justification becomes "vitalized", and he is at peace with God; at that moment he is begotten of the spirit to the divine nature, as shown on plane M. Those, who do not respond to the invitation to present their bodies a living sacrifice, receive a measure of God's grace ("tentative" justification) in vain, but have not died the "second death". Again becoming a part of the world, they will have the opportunity to walk up the highway of holiness in due time.Acts 3:19; 4:10-12; Romans 6:18-21; 12:1; 3:24; 5:9; 5:1; 4:24,25; 2 Corinthians 6:1; Isaiah 35:8
Plane P shows the typical justification of natural Israel. The typical sacrifices of bulls and goats during the Jewish Age, from the giving of the Law until Jesus nailed it to his cross, cleansed Israel after the flesh (not really), but, typically. At the cross the typical justification ended by the institution of the "better sacrifices" which actually take away the sin of the world and make the comers thereunto perfect.Exodus 19:5; Hebrews 9:6,7; 10:1
Depraved (Unjustified) PlaneBroad WayR
At the time of Adam's disobedience, he fell (from plane N) to the depraved (unjustified) plane, as shown by R on the chart. He and his descendants have ever since been walking on the broad way which leads to destruction.Genesis 2:17; Matthew 7:13; Romans 5:12; 1 Corinthians 15:21,22
The Time Of TroubleS
The shaded area, designated S on the chart, seems to depict the time of trouble which comes upon the nominal Christian church and the nations of earth during the transition period between the second and third dispensations. Jesus, no doubt quoting from Daniel's prophecy (chapter 12, verse 1), prophesied, that during the present transition period, there would be a time of trouble such as was never before experienced. This trouble in a sense began at the time our Lord returned (with the kingdom) to accomplish the "restitution of all things". Three and one half years later, the call went forth to the fully consecrated to come out of Babylon. A time of sifting, testing, and trouble has been the result. It is a time of separating the ripe wheat from the unripe at the time of gathering and also a separation of the wheat from the tares. In a particular sense the trouble upon the nations began in 1914, with the beginning of World War I. This trouble, which is coming in spasms (war, revolution, and anarchy), is permitted in order that those things out of harmony with the kingdom can be removed.Matthew 24:21,22; Joel 2:2; Revelation 18:4; Matthew 13:41,42
The World Of Mankind Lifted Up To Perfection And LifeW
At the time Adam disobeyed, the Almighty Creator turned his back upon the sinner and his unborn race. For over 6000 years man has been walking on the broad way which leads to death. Because of the costly ransom sacrifice of the dear Redeemer, the dead and dying human race will, in due time, (during the Mediatorial reign) have the opportunity to repent of sin, and accept and obey the dear Redeemer. Those who do so will be lifted up to the plane of human perfection and life, as shown by W on the chart.Genesis 3:16-19; Matthew 7:13; 1 Timothy 2:3-6; Isaiah 35:8
The Lower Case Letters On The Chart
Adam As A Perfect Mana
When created, Adam was a perfect man, as shown by pyramid a.Genesis 2:7; Luke 3:38
Fallen Adam And His Posterity Before The Floodb
Incomplete pyramid b depicts fallen Adam and his posterity condemned to death.Genesis 3:17-19; Romans 3:10; 5:12
Abraham And Others Justified To Friendship With Godc
Abraham and others of that day had fellowship with God, as shown by pyramid c. Because of their faith, they were friends of God. They were lifted up above the depraved sinful world of mankind.Genesis 6:8; 22:15-18; 26:1-4; 28:10-14; James 2:23; Psalm 45:16: Hebrews 11:4-40
Adam's Posterity Still Sinners After The Floodd
Incomplete pyramid d represents Adam's posterity after the flood, still at enmity against God. At the present, the number of Adam's posterity (still partially alive) is approximately six billion. These prisoners, condemned to death because of Adam's disobedience, are "enemies through wicked works". Every 24 hours approximately 147,000 of these prisoners, having reached the end of the broad way, actually die. These join the billions already actually dead.Romans 3:10, 23; Psalm 49:7; Matthew 7:13
Natural Israel Typically Justifiede
During the Jewish Age, the typical sacrifices cleansed natural Israel, not really, but typically.Hebrews 10:1-4; 7:19
The Fire Of Trial And Trouble Upon Fleshly Israelf
At the first advent of Jesus, the wheat ("Israelites" indeed) was taken out of the nominal church system, and then the chaff was burned with unquenchable fire, as shown by figure f. This was a time of trouble which Israel was powerless to avert.Luke 3:16,17; 1 Thessalonians 2:14-16
Jesus As A Perfect Mang
Jesus, as a perfect and mature man at the age of 30, is shown by pyramid g. He left the glory which he had with the Father, as a spirit being, and took the nature of man in order that he might be a corresponding price for Adam. Being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient unto death.Luke 1:26-33; John 1:14; 1 Timothy 2:5,6
Jesus Begotten To The Divine Natureh
At 30 years of age Jesus gave up his human will and accepted the will of his heavenly Father. After having made this consecration, he symbolized it by water baptism. Jesus was anointed with the holy Spirit and begotten to the divine nature, as represented by pyramid h. Our Lord Jesus Christ spent three and one-half years on plane M, the plane of spirit begettal.Hebrews 10:7,9; Matthew 3:13-17; John 1:29-34
Jesus A Divine Spirit Being (Born of the Spirit)i
The human existence of the man Jesus ended on the cross. After being dead for parts of three days, our Redeemer was resurrected a glorious divine spirit being, as shown by pyramid i. Our Lord was the "firstborn" from the dead. The spirit-begotten new creature, whose only body for three and one-half years was the perfect body of the man Jesus, was given a divine spirit body.Luke 23:44-46; 24:1-7; Colossians 1:18
Jesus Set Down With The Father On His Thronek
Forty days after his resurrection, our Lord (a glorious divine spirit being from the time of his resurrection) ascended to the majesty on high, as shown by pyramid k.Luke 24:50,51
Jesus In Glory Directing The Church During The Gospel Agel
From the ascension of our Lord Jesus Christ until the beginning of the Gospel Age harvest, our Lord was in heaven, set down with the Father on his throne, guiding and directing the affairs of his church on earth.Matthew 28:19,20; John 14:2,3
The Great Company Of Spirit Begotten Childrenm
All who made an acceptable covenant with God by sacrifice down through the Gospel Age were begotten of the spirit to the divine nature. However, a large number of spirit begotten Christians became overcharged with the cares of this life, as shown by that section of the incomplete pyramid, designated m. These foolish virgins failed to think upon and appropriate the precious promises which would have enabled them to grow in grace and knowledge. The ones who were careless lost their anointing but not their begetting. Eventually they washed their robes in the blood of the Lamb.Revelation 7:13-15; Matthew 25:1-12; 1 John 2:1,2; Psalm 45:14,15
The Little Flock of Spirit Begotten Childrenn
The "little flock" of consecrated children of the heavenly Father down through the Gospel Age, as represented by section n, fulfilled their covenant, being dead to earthly will, aims, and ambitions. The precious promises enabled them to grow in grace and knowledge. Those who were more than overcomers will sit with Christ in his throne of glory.Colossians 3:1-3; 2 Peter 1:4; 2 Timothy 2:11,12
The Majority Of The Nominal Church Tentatively Justifiedp
Down through the Gospel Age, many, with a measure of faith, associated with the nominal church, as shown by section p. These had a measure of peace with God and the privilege of prayer by measure. From these tentatively justified ones, many were called to become the bride of Christ. If one, invited, rejected that invitation, he received the measure of grace which he had enjoyed in vain. However, he did not die the second death. Becoming a part of the world again, he will have the opportunity, in due time, to walk up the highway of holiness.Romans 12:1; 2 Corinthians 6:1
Wolves In Sheep's Clothingq
For business, social, and selfish reasons, down through the Gospel Age, as shown by section q, many associated themselves with the nominal church. These tares are shown below the plane of "tentative" justification. Being a part of the world, in due time, they will have the opportunity to walk up the highway of holiness.Matthew 7:15-18; Acts 20:29
Our Returned Lord As Bridegroom, Reaper, And Kingr
When it was time for the harvest of the Gospel Age to begin, our Lord returned to earth's atmosphere with the kingdom, as shown by pyramid r on plane L. Our Lord still retains his "all power" which he received at the time of his resurrection, as shown by pyramid i on plane L. It is now time to exercise that power. Kingdom work, which began with his arrival, will continue throughout the Messianic Age. Three and one-half years after our Lord's second presence began, our King resurrected his body members who had fallen asleep, down through the Gospel Age, after finishing their walk faithfully in the narrow way. The more than overcomers who have died, since the "dead in Christ" were resurrected, have not slept in death, but have been immediately "changed" to be associated with our Lord and the other saints who are engaged in kingdom work, as shown by pyramid r on plane L.John 14:2,3; 1 Thessalonians 4:16,17; 1 Corinthians 15:51-53; Revelation 14:13
Little Flock Separated From Babylons
Three and one-half years after our Lord's second presence began, the wise virgins were invited to come out of Babylon, as shown by incomplete pyramid s. The spirit begotten ones who are living up to their consecration vows, being faithfully engaged in kingdom work, with laborious efforts, are longing for the time of their resurrection change, "in a moment, in a twinkling of an eye", after having been faithful until death.Revelation 18:4; 14:13; 1 Corinthians 15:51-53
Great Company Manifested As A Classt
The great company, begotten of the spirit, fail to keep their robes clean. They build with wood, hay, and stubble. These are represented as wheat not fully ripened at the time of gathering. After the "little flock" has been resurrected, the great company, still on plane M, will be manifested as a class, as shown by incomplete pyramid t. After experiencing great tribulation, these will request the Father, through their Advocate, to remove the "spots" from their robes. The ones who overcome will die and then be resurrected at the same time the foolish virgins, who died down through the Gospel Age, are also resurrected.Revelation 7:13-15
Tentatively Justified returning to the worldu
No one will be called to the high calling unless there is a crown available. Those shown by section u were never spirit begotten. Either they were not called, or, being invited, did not accept the high calling. Being a part of the world, they will have the opportunity to walk up the highway of holiness in due time.Isaiah 35:8
Wolves In Sheep's Clothing returning to the worldv
During this transition period, the nominal church falls to pieces. Before the harvest is over, each class will have been manifested. Those who have professed to be Christians, but who are wolves in sheep's clothing, will be made manifest in due time, as shown by section v. These "tares", being a part of the world,will have the opportunity, in due time, to walk up the highway of holiness.Isaiah 35:8
The Glorified Christ (Head And Body)w
After the last member of the "little flock" finishes his earthly walk in the narrow way, the full union or marriage of the Bridegroom and the bride will occur, as shown by pyramid w. The bride will share the glory of office or power (shown on plane K) with the Bridegroom.Revelation 19:7
The Christ (The Head Of All Things)x
After the full union of the bride to the Bridegroom, all things in heaven and on earth will be gradually brought under the Headship of The Christ or else be cut off in the second death.Ephesians 1:10; Revelation 22:17; Acts 3:23
The Great Company Before The Throney
The spirit begotten ones, of the Gospel Age, who are relegated to the great company class, must wash their robes in the blood of the Lamb, if they desire life. Those who do so will be born of the spirit, in due time, and will serve before the throne, as shown by section y on plane L. Other spirit beings, who then recognize The Christ, are also shown by section y.Revelation 7:13-15; Ephesians 1:10
Israel After The Fleshz
At the time divine intervention stops the great time of trouble, the New Covenant will be sealed with the precious blood of Jesus. The ancient worthies will be resurrected, and the New Covenant will be inaugurated with a representative group in Israel who have faith, as shown by section z. This will include only Israelites indeed who will be at the head of earthly nations.Zechariah 14:1-3; Psalm 45:16; Exodus 20:18,19; Jeremiah 31:31-34; Zechariah 8:22, 23
The Numbers On The Chart
At the time of the flood, as shown by number 1, the first dispensation came to an end and the second dispensation began. From the creation of Adam to the flood was a period of 1656 years. There at the flood, the Patriarchal Age had its beginning. The friendship relationship of Noah (one of the patriarchs) with the heavenly Creator continued.
The Death Of Jacob2
The death of Jacob, as shown by number 2, occurred in the year 1813 B.C. His death marked the close of the Patriarchal Age and the beginning of the Jewish Age. From the death of Jacob to the death of Jesus, a period of 1845 years, special favor was extended to fleshly Israel.
The Baptism of Jesus3
Jesus, upon reaching the age of 30, as shown by number 3, consecrated to do the will of the heavenly Father and then symbolized that dedication by water baptism at the hands of John the Baptist. That momentous event occurred in the fall of the year 29 A.D., at which time the Gospel Age had its beginning. At that same date, the harvest of the Jewish Age began.
The Crucifixion Of Jesus4
On Friday, April 3, 33 A.D., our dear Redeemer was crucified, as shown by number 4. On the third day from his death, early on Sunday morning, the Savior was resurrected; he was "the firstborn from the dead". Fifty days later the waiting disciples came in under the one anointing of the Spirit and were individually begotten of the spirit to the divine nature.
The End Of Seventy Weeks (490 Years) Of Favor To Israel5
In 36 A.D., the 490 years of special favor to Israel came to an end, as shown by number 5. Even though national favor ended at the time of fleshly Israel's rejection and crucifixion of Jesus, special favor, from 33 A.D. to 36 A.D., was extended to the "Israelites indeed". The Gentile believers received the holy Spirit at the end of the period of favor to Israel in the year 36 A.D..
The End Of The Jewish Age And Its Harvest6
During the harvest of the Jewish Age, the "Israelites indeed" were separated from the nominal church, and the chaff was burned with unquenchable fire. The end of the Jewish Age and its harvest is shown by number 6.
The Beginning Of The Third Dispensation7
The third dispensation began at the time our Lord returned in the year 1874 A.D., as shown by number 7. At that date, the Messianic Age began. This was also the beginning of the resurrection age, the restitution age, and the day of judgment. The harvest of the Gospel Age began at the same date with the presence of the Chief Reaper.
The Resurrection Of The Sleeping Saints8
In the year 1878, the dead in Christ were resurrected, as shown by number 8. It was time for them to be engaged in kingdom work. In that same year a call was issued for the saints on this side of the "veil" to come out of Babylon. The 1845 years of fleshly Israel's disfavor ended in 1878.
The General Call To The High Calling Ceased9
Even though the general call ceased in 1881, the door to the high calling remains open, as shown by number 9. However, it is only when one who is spirit begotten has to be replaced, (on account of being overcharged with the cares of this world, or sinful living, or loss of faith), that one, desirous of doing the Father's will, is invited to enter the narrow way as a replacement. The door to the high calling will remain open until the bride has made herself ready.
The Second Dispensation Will End10
At the time divine intervention stops the great time of trouble, the second dispensation will have fully ended, as shown by number 10. That date, which is an unknown one at the present time, will also be the end of the Gospel Age and its harvest. By that time all the "wheat" will have been resurrected, and the "tares" will have been burned. When the second dispensation comes to a full end, the New Covenant will be sealed with the precious blood of Jesus and inaugurated with those in Israel who have faith.
The Messianic Age Will End11
After King Jesus has subdued all enemies, his thousand year presence will come to a close, as shown by number 11. The kingdom will be turned back to the heavenly Father so that he may be all in all. Then the second age of the third dispensation will begin, the first part of which will be a "little season" necessary for the final testing of restored mankind.
The Tabernacle of the Wilderness
The same lesson shown in the Chart of the Ages is here taught in this divinely arranged type, the lessons of which will be more fully examined subsequently. We place it alongside, that the different planes or steps to the Holy of Holies may be duly noted or appreciated, as teaching the same steps already examined in detail. Outside the court of the tabernacle lies the whole world in sin, on the depraved plane, R. Entering through the "gate" into the "court," we become believers or justified persons, on plane N.
Those who go forward in consecration press to the door of the Tabernacle, and, entering in (plane M), become priests. They are strengthened by the "shew bread," enlightened by the "candlestick" and enabled to offer acceptable incense to God by Jesus Christ at the "Golden Altar." Finally, in the first resurrection, they enter the perfect spiritual condition, or "Most Holy" (plane L), and are then associated with Jesus in the glory of the Kingdom, plane K.
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Praise Ye the Lord!
Glory, honor, and praise to the heavenly Father who has such a beautiful harmonious plan recorded in the Bible! May each one who loves truth and righteousness study the chart of the ages over and over again.
"Praise ye the LORD. Praise God in his sanctuary; praise him in the firmament of his power. Praise him for his mighty acts; praise him according to his excellent greatness. Let everything that hath breath praise the Lord. Praise ye the LORD."Psalm 150:1,2,6