My dear Brethren: Grace and peace thru our Beloved Master
Those of the Truth groups who came into the Truth during Brother Russell’s life were substantially of one mind before 1916 – and most emphatically so, that he alone was “That Servant” of Matt. 24:45‑47; and this belief was so firmly entrenched among the various ecclesias that it is doubtful if any one of them would have elected an elder to his office who openly declared his disbelief on the matter. After his death a few – a very few (we know personally of only two) – said they never did believe he was That Servant; but they concealed their opinion so well that it closely approached hypocrisy. One outstanding example of such was Frederick H. Robison, one of the Tower Editors after the Fall of 1916. He then openly declared that he never did believe that Brother Russell or the Society could be “that Servant.” Yet, during the last years of Brother Russell’s life he was a regular resident at the Bible House and devoted his entire time to the Truth work. How long, think you, could he have remained there had he revealed himself then as he did after Brother Russell’s death? And how much reliance should any of us place in a character like that? Surely, we must regard him as a rank hypocrite, harsh though the word may seem.
But in the years that have followed all sorts of views have “sprouted” among Truth people ‑from one extreme to the other. Some hold he was That Servant in such an extreme degree that he gave all the Truth due here in the end of the Age, and that he was also the last saint to be on earth. Others, such as FHR mentioned above, deny he was That Servant in any sense of the word. And in between these two views we find many variations. However, our purpose here is mainly to consider those among us who do believe he was That Servant, but whose views on some important Bible subjects directly rule him out as such. In other words, if he was That Servant, then he self‑evidently was “ruler over this household,” as he was also “ruler over all His goods.” These statements would mean that he dictated the policies without accepting supervision or curtailment from any other individual, or from any group of individuals; and that his teachings were in the overall sense the “due Truth” then. And, if those things were “due Truth” then, they would still be Truth now – making allowance, of course, for some minor discrepancies, some of which he himself corrected later in life.
Our established readers know of our firm belief that Brother Russell was “That Servant” in the exact words of the text; and believing such, it logically follows that we adhere closely to the general Truth structure which he gave the Household when he was with us. Of course, we realize there is some dispute about what he actually taught on a few items – such as tentative justification, the Epiphany and the Time of Trouble being identical, etc.; but those points we shall ignore in this presentation. Brother Russell himself taught that “the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day” (Prov. 4:18); and he applied this to the individual life of each sincere believer, as well as to the entire Household. Even assuming there are no more saints on earth, it would still be logical to expect more “light,” as Rotherham’s translation of the text clearly reveals: “The path of the righteous is as the light of dawn, going on and brightening, unto meridian day.” Notice now the footnote: “the stable part of the day, when the sun seems motionless in mid‑heaven.” “The Sun of Righteousness shall arise with healing in His wings.” (Mal. 4:2) From Rotherham’s translation and footnote, it is apparent that the rising of “The Sun of righteousness” is in exact proportion to the celestial sun in its rising and progress to high noon. Thus, early risers would see the sun’s rising first, while, others who might sleep to nine or ten in the morning would only see it when they arise, howbeit it would then be much brighter than at early dawn. All of us know that this has been the exact course of the Truth Movement, which forces us to accept one of two views: Either the Truth reached its full splendor in October, 1916, when Brother Russell died, or it has continued to rise higher and higher, and will continue to do so until the “meridian day” – at high noon. And this will come only when “the knowledge of the Lord shall cover the earth, as the waters cover the sea.” Here is the Berean Comment on Isa. 11:9: “Earth shall be full – At the close of the Millennium. This is not true in the present time.” The “seventh trumpet” began to sound in 1874, and will continue to sound until the goats have all been destroyed at the full end of the Little Season.
From the foregoing, it should be clear enough not only that other enlightened teachers would follow after That Servant, but they will continue to appear unto the “meridian day” – at the close of the Millennium, as That Servant himself taught. However, we would say of him that he held the exclusive position of “the steward” here in the end of the Age – a position not occupied by any other individual since the days of the Apostles. But even in this last statement there must be some qualification, lest we be misunderstood. The “ruler over the household” (the twelve Apostles) at the beginning of the Gospel Age wrote by inspiration, and those writings were infallible; but this was definitely not the case with the “ruler over the household” here in the end of the Age.
All of us know that Brother Russell made some mistakes – permitted by the Lord, of course, for “the trial of your faith”; but those mistakes were few indeed when we consider the intricate and massive Truth structure he placed upon the table as the “meat in due season.” However, to offer some allowance for his mistakes, we would say that even the Apostles – at least one of them – also made serious mistakes, outstanding among them being St. Peter himself to whom the Lord had delivered “the keys of the Kingdom.” (Matt. 16:19) “When Cephas [Peter] came to Antioch, I [Paul] opposed him face to face, because he was blamable. For before certain persons came from James, he ate together with the Gentiles; but when they came he withdrew and separated himself, being afraid of those belonging to the circumcision... even Barnabas was led astray by their hypocrisy.” (Gal. 2:11‑13,Dia.) In this statement St. Paul openly accuses the one to whom had been committed “the keys of the kingdom” of temporary hypocrisy – a very serious charge indeed, and revealing a fault that was not chargeable to Brother Russell all during his ministry so far as we know.
Many of our readers are probably in full agreement with all of the foregoing, but there are also probably some of our readers who believe there was no special illumination during that portion of the Age that lies between the Apostles and That Servant. This likewise is an extreme position. It was Moses who led Israel from Egypt (type of the world in sin) to goodly Canaan land (type of the Heavenly garner); and in this he was certainly a type of those outstanding individuals during the Age who led spiritual Israel from antitypical Egypt to the Heavenly Canaan. Those brethren also held a high position in the Household; and St. Paul makes this quite clear in Eph. 4:11,12: “He gave some, apostles [the twelve]; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists [such as Timothy]; and some, pastors and teachers [local elders]... for the work of the ministry.” The “prophets” in this text are the same ones mentioned by St. Paul in 1 Cor. 12:28: “God hath set some in the Church, first apostles, secondarily prophets.”
In Eph. 2:20 the Apostle declares that the Church is “built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets.” And who are the “prophets” in this text? They are the same as mentioned in the two other texts – those who labored in word and doctrine in “the work of the ministry” to build the Church which is His Body. Being the very foundation stones, they must necessarily be a part of the building, which was not true of the Old Testament prophets. These latter have indeed taught the Gospel‑Age Church through their writings; but none of them received the “better thing” which has been reserved exclusively for the Church of this Age. The Gospel‑Age “prophets,” the foundations stones of the Temple, are the same as the “seven stars in His right hand” (Rev. 1:16), who were the special messengers (the Gospel‑Age antitype of Moses) who were given the special messages to the seven churches of Revelation 2 and 3 – of which “stars” Brother Russell was but one – as he also was one of the “eight principal men” of the “seven shepherds” of Micah 5:5. The “seven shepherds” in this text are the same as the “seven stars” of Revelation, and are the same as the “prophets” mentioned by St. Paul in his writings quoted aforegoing.
During Brother Russell’s life those brethren that regarded him exclusively as That Servant also regarded him as the only one included in the “man with the writer’s inkhorn” in Ezek. 9:2,11 so much so that there is inscribed on his tombstone at Allegheny the words, “I have done as thou hast commanded me.” There is a certain logic in all Bible presentations that provides a symmetry and harmony which should never be ignored. In Ezek. 9:1,2, six other men are mentioned, “every man with his destroying weapon in his hand”; but of the seven mentioned only one is said to be “clothed with linen”; and “fine linen is the righteousness of the saints.” (Rev. 19:8) The one “clothed with linen” was to “set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and cry in the city for all the abominations that be done in the midst thereof.” (Ezek 9:4) Surely, none of us would contend that Brother Russell alone did all of this work, although he did considerably more than any other individual. Nor were the men with the “slaughter weapons” in their hands individuals. These six were the Harvest sifters; and no individual monopolized the sifting errors of any one of the six siftings that occurred after 1874. Thus, consistency would force us to conclude that the man “clothed with linen” was more than one individual. It is true that Brother Russell did put the ink into the horn; he provided the “sharp sickle” of Rev. 14:14,15 (Present Truth – see Berean Comment) that enabled all the reapers to do the Harvest work.
History is not too profuse about many of the “stars” that came after the Apostles, but a sentence or two here and there is sufficient to give us a foundation for the belief in their spiritual insight. As instance, Arius: the record says of him that he “was a man of clear intellect.” And this he well must have been, when we consider the pompous assembly of bishops that congregated at Nice in 325, with only two of that illustrious multitude aligned with him. Yet his arguments that there is but one God were so prevailing and unanswerable that Emperor Constantine concluded that the best way to silence that man was to banish him from the Roman Empire. But even that did not silence him, because he went over into North Africa, where he died after eleven years, leaving a thriving group of “Arians” as his testimonial to the Truth he had loved so well.
And similar conclusion may be made of many others; for instance, Polycarp, Marsiglio, Wessel, Luther, Zwingli, Servetus, Cranmer, Wesley, Miller, et al. Well did the text apply to them: “Sons of God, without rebuke... ye shine as lights in the world.” (Phil. 2:15) The Diaglott states it even more forcefully: “Irreproachable children of God, in the midst of a crooked and misguided generation, among whom you appear as luminaries in the world.” The footnote on this text says that the Greek phosteeres is the name given to the sun and the moon in the Septuagint; and this was certainly a fitting description of those “stars” that led spiritual Israel all during the Gospel Age. Thus, while Brother Russell outshone many of them, he was by no means the only “luminary” that gave a “good and faithful” account of his stewardship.
As stated above, among those brethren that contend Brother Russell was That Servant, there are some – quite a few, in fact – that belie their own statements in that they reject so many prominent and essential truths he gave. For instance, some contend that the Second Advent of Jesus has not yet occurred. If that be true, then the Harvest is yet future, because the Chief Reaper is the one who would provide the “sharp sickle” with which to do the reaping work. And note the logical sequence in the pertinent Scripture: “From this time blessed are those dead who die in the Lord... they may rest from their labors; for their works follow after them [as they experience their part in the First Resurrection, and are joined in the Marriage to the Lamb]... And behold! a white cloud, and on the cloud one sitting like a Son of Man [this occurred after the First Resurrection had begun], having on His head a golden crown [authority to rule], and in His hand a sharp sickle... And another angel came forth out of the temple, crying with a loud voice ‘Send thy sickle and reap; because the hour to reap is come.” (Rev. 14:13‑15, Dia.)
And Brother Russell applied this prophecy to his own activity from 1878 until he died in 1916. Thus, if he was That Servant, he instigated and supervised the reaping, put the ink into the inkhorn, and gave “the present Truth”; otherwise, we must catalog him as a rank fraud, with perhaps the most erroneous message ever presented in such a short time during the entire Age.
Also, he correctly predicted the outbreak of the World War in 1914, which began the desolation of Christendom – just as Jeremiah predicted the desolation of Israel during the Babylonian captivity. And in this he clearly antityped Jer. 1:5: “I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.” Those who remember conditions back in 1914 know the prediction of a world conflict seemed certain to fall in derision before all, because everything was serene and calm, exceptionally so – with just no indication whatever that in one short 24‑hour day the roof would fall in on Christendom. The Archduke of Austria was driving peacefully along in a carriage in Serajevo (now Serbia), when he and his wife were assassinated; and this precipitated the World War in a matter of hours thereafter. So violent was the disturbance that the New York Stock Exchange closed for many months, so that no one could buy or sell even here in America where we were not yet directly involved in the conflict. But that event brought admission from some of Brother Russell’s erstwhile critics that he was indeed “the prophet unto the nations.”
A PERTINENT STATEMENT
Lest we appear to stress this situation overly much, we now offer a quotation from Volume 2, p. 28, “The Time is at Hand,” the same having been first presented to the public in 1889 – 25 years before the world uproar began:
“It is a grave error into which many fall, to suppose a knowledge of God’s doings and plans is of little importance, the graces of Christian character are all God requires, and these are better conserved by ignorance. How differently the Scriptures present the matter! They counsel not only to cultivate the graces of the Christian character, but to preserve constantly the condition of heart that will enable us to discern the truth, especially the Truth of the Lord’s presence when due, and when dispensational changes take place. A knowledge of dispensational truth is as important in the end of this Age as in the end of the Jewish Age. Those who did not discern the truth then due did not receive the favors then due. So in the end of this Age: Those who cannot discern the truth now due, blinded by unbelief and worldliness, cannot receive special favors now due. They are not overcomers, and hence not fit to be the bride of Christ, and to enter into the glorious inheritance of the saints as joint‑heirs with Him. Truth, in this Age, under adverse conditions for its reception, becomes a test of our faithfulness to God, and hence as a sickle separates the fit from the unfit, the wheat from the tares.
“Odium attaches to the study of prophetic time through past misapplications of it by the Second Adventists and others, and the consequent failures to realize the events expected to occur at set times. But we see that even this is a part of God’s plan to obscure the subject to all but the class for whom it was intended, by permitting contempt and ridicule to attach to it, hindering the worldly‑wise and prudent from grasping it (Matt. 11:25). This, we doubt not, was as much a part of the Divine Plan as sending Jesus into Nazareth, a despised place “that He might be called a Nazarene” (Matt. 2:23), though He was born in the honorable town of Bethlehem. As the worldly‑wise and prudent of that day said, Can any good thing come out of Nazareth? so today, when prophetic time or anything relating to Jesus’ advent is mentioned, many cry Adventist, as if to say, Can any good thing come out of Adventism? though they admit that many prophecies containing time are not yet fulfilled, and that the second coming of the Lord is the most prominent topic of Scripture.”
Recently we heard a brother offer an excellent oration on this subject, in which he stressed the Scripture, “It is contained in the Scripture, Behold, I place in Zion a foundation‑corner stone, chosen, honorable; and he who confides in it shall not be ashamed. The honor therefore is for the believers; but to the disbelieving, this stone which the builders rejected, was made into the head of a corner – even a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offense... to both the houses of Israel.” (1 Pet. 2:6‑8, Dia.; Isa 8:14) And what is the “stone of stumbling”? Is it not the recognition of the Messiah, and the time concerning His presence. Indeed, the accusation was flung at the Jews: “The days will come on thee, when thine enemies shall throw a rampart around thee... and lay thee level with the ground... because thou didst not know the season of thy visitation.” (Luke 19:43,44, Dia.) Thus it was the presence of the Lord Jesus, and the accompanying works, that was “the stone of stumbling” for the Jews at that time.
Consequently, the sharp criticism of Jesus: “If I had not done among them the works which none other man did, they had not had sin – but now they have no excuse for their sin.” (John 15:22‑24) And further in Luke 7:19‑23, Dia.: “And summoning two of his disciples, John sent to the Lord, saying, ‘Art thou the coming one? or are we to expect another?’ And having come to Him, the men said, ‘John, the Immerser, sent us to thee, saying, ‘Art thou the coming one? or are we to expect another?’... And Jesus answering, said to them, ‘Go, tell John what you have seen and heard; the blind are made to see, the lame to walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, glad tidings are announced to the poor; and happy is he who shall not stumble at Me.”’ But the most of the Jews were “slow of heart”; their hearts had waxed fat; their eyes and ears they had closed – they did “stumble”; and they reaped the consequent destruction at the hands of the Roman army under Titus.
Much the same condition exists today with many who claim to have the faith of their fathers, blinded also at least partially to the mission and works of That Servant. He it was who clearly defined the ten cardinal doctrines of the Bible, and coordinated them with each other. This he did as no other man before him had ever done. Further, he examined the various stewardship doctrines of the “stars” who had preceded him, cleansed them of their flaws, polished them as no other man had ever before done. For example, the stewardship doctrine of Martin Luther was “Justification by faith”; but That Servant defined Justification in all its various details much more effectively and clearly than Martin Luther himself had done. This he did likewise with the doctrines of the Second Advent, of Baptism, of the Lord’s Supper, of the elective and restitution salvations, the condition of the dead, the true meaning of the soul, etc. All of these he made crystal clear, and harmonized them with each other. Thus, it could truly be said of him that he had done among us “the works which none other man did.” And he, too, became “a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense” to Big Babylon during the small Parousia Day; and he is now the same “stone of stumbling” to many.
“In the time of the end knowledge shall be increased.” (Dan. 12:4) The great increase of knowledge was first of all spiritual, having its beginning about 1870. And the Scripture clearly states that That Servant would be dispensing the “meat in due season” when “his Lord cometh.” Therefore, when we would observe the offering of the “meat in due season,” it would give us absolute proof that the Lord had also come. It is as clear as the noonday sun. But, of those who cannot discern this evident truth, it is written of them, “Our lamps are gone out” – they have lost the spirit of understanding. Note the Berean Comment on Matt. 25:3.
Nor was it long after the appearance of the spiritual truth until secular truth began to come forth – in keeping with the prophecy, “Truth shall spring out of the earth [the present social order].” (Psa. 85:11) A little reflection will give ample substantiation: At the end of the Civil War in 1865 there wasn’t a telephone in the United States (or anywhere else in the world); no radio, no television, no automobiles, no typewriters. The United States was then largely an agricultural country, and the people were forced to provide their own entertainment, such as it might be. A favorite mode of travel was horseback or carriage; with oil lamps to give light to all rural homes. The first practical typewriter came in 1874, with the electric light some years after that. It is stated by some that the electric light has been the most beneficial invention for mankind in all history, and we would certainly not quarrel with that. But it also came after the Lord had come – a sound secular evidence that the Lord had indeed come. After the Civil War the people were still harvesting their wheat, barley, etc., with sickles and scythes; it required a very good team of horses to plow and prepare two acres of land for planting in one day – a dawn‑to‑dusk day, not an eight‑hour day. Today it is ordinary procedure for a large tractor to prepare and plant 75 acres in one day. “Knowledge shall be increased,” and only the spiritually blind cannot read the signs of the times in such things.
The desolation of Palestine began in the fall of 607 B.C „ and is paralleled by the beginning of the desolation of Christendom in 1914. Thus, we may logically look for parallel happenings in both “houses of Israel.” Today the youth are calling many of the turns in our social order; 18‑year‑olds are now given the vote. They are also intimidating their teachers in many parts of the country – so much so that the teachers are afraid to correct or discipline them for fear of the knife, the club, or the gas pipe after school. Note the charge against Jewry about 100 years before Jerusalem was leveled: “As for my people, children are their oppressors, and women rule over them.” (Isa. 3:12) All of us have recognized that there is always bedlam in any home where the children run riot without correction. All of these things, and many more, are but the “signs” that point to the second presence of Jesus.
SITTING IN MOSES’ SEAT
Just before His death, Jesus said: “The Scribes and Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat.” (Matt. 23:2) The full significance of this is not discerned until we understand the custom of that time, which was just the reverse of what we have today. At that time the speaker, or teacher, sat, as the audience or pupils stood. This was so pronounced then that in the Talmud “to sit” is almost synonymous with “to teach.” An instance of this is Matt. 5:1: “When He was set, His disciples came unto Him. And He opened His mouth, and taught them.” Therefore, when Jesus said that those Jewish leaders sat in the seat of Moses, He meant that they occupied the teaching position in Israel. This is further confirmed in John 18:13,14: “They led Him away to Annas first, for he was father in law to Caiaphas, which was the high priest that same year. Now Caiaphas was he which gave counsel to the Jews that it was expedient that one man should die for the people.” Note now the Berean Comment on verse 13: “Was the high priest... And, therefore, until the rejection of the Jewish House, was to a certain extent God’s mouthpiece.”
That same condition would also apply here in the end of the Age. “Babylon hath been a golden cup [the golden cup being the Divine Truth] in the Lord’s hand.” (Jer. 51:7) But she was rejected from such position in 1881, until today there is no semblance of God’s mouthpiece at all in Big Babylon. Thus, we must look elsewhere for the counterpart of those Scribes and Pharisees of Jesus’ day; and it doesn’t require much insight to find them in Little Babylon – the outstanding example being Jehovah’s Witnesses. Are they not telling the world that they are the only gate to salvation? And, in their attempt to construct a tower (gateway) to Heaven, have they not had their tongues sadly confused a “Babel” of most repellent sort? Let us note once more that Moses was a type of the Star Members of this Age, of which That Servant was a most prominent one. But the Witnesses now claim succession to him as mouthpiece to Christendom – to take up where he left off; they claim the teaching position to Christendom. Therefore, they, by their own admission, do claim to sit in the seat of antitypical Moses.
During the Age the Roman Church soon learned that they could tell their adherents most any weird sort of yarn, and they would believe it. In fact, if they did not believe it, they were not “good Catholics.” The Witnesses have followed in exact pattern: their adherents must also believe just what they teach. If any one in their midst persists in asking questions that may appear to contradict what is published in their Watch Tower, it will not be long until he is disfellowshiped – after which the “faithful” are instructed not even to speak to him if they see him on the street.
It thus becomes pertinent here to offer some more from Parousia Vol. 2, pp. 29‑31: “We have great sympathy for the First Adventists, the Jews, and the Second Adventists, though only a few of either realized the truths they so nearly apprehended, yet failed to grasp, blinded by false expectations. Our Adventist friends have failed to recognize both the manner and the object of the Lord’s return as taught in the Scriptures; consequently, they have not been expecting to see Him as He is, but as He was. They consider the object of His coming one which will fill the hearts of all except the saints with dismay and terror; that His object is to gather the elect, destroy all others of mankind, and burn up the world. Having such ideas, they used time prophecy as a whip to scourge and drive the world to God [as the Witnesses are now also doing through the threat of destruction in Armageddon]... God provided time prophecies for no such purpose, nor will He attempt to convert the world in any such way; for He seeketh such to worship Him as worship in spirit and in truth (John 4:23), and not such as are frightened into His service. [Here is a direct contradiction to the technique of the Witnesses, as they claim to “sit in Moses’ seat” – as successors to That Servant] If He designs to terrorize men into obedience, He could have devised some more successful method than the proclamation of time, as our Adventist friends have proved.
“Prophetic time was given, not to alarm the world, nor for the world in any sense, but to strengthen, comfort, encourage and guide the Church in the troublous times in the end of the Age. Therefore, it is written, ‘None of the wicked [the world in general] shall understand, but the wise only [those who have accepted the Wisdom from above].’ (Dan. 12:10) To these this becomes meat in due season [the faithful and wise servant was to “give them meat in due season”], and it, with other meat, strengthens those who use it, so that they may be able to stand in the evil day [in which we now find ourselves], the day of trouble with which this Age closes. It will enable them to understand the events transpiring around them, so that they will not be consumed by fear and dread [by the threat of Hell Fire, or Armageddon blood bath], not swallowed up by the projects and false theories, science falsely so‑called, with which this day abounds. And, withal, they may be in the devouring fire (trouble), witnesses for God and His plan, and teachers of the people ‑pointers to the outcome of Jehovah’s plan, lifting up a standard for the people (Isa. 62:10).”
In the above quotation from That Servant it is clearly discernible that he taught that as long as sin and evil are in the ascendancy – and no one in sound mind will dispute that fact – the “call” is not for the world in general. Only the “elect” who make the promises their own are able to stand trial for life now, in faith and obedience. But the Witnesses set aside that logical teaching, and tell the world they MUST accept them and their present system of error, or die in Armageddon, with no hope of a resurrection. And why do they teach such? Because they have had their chance, they say. To those who cannot accept their teachings now in “this present evil world” they offer no hope for any kind of future life. Thus, they preach the Kingdom, but without the “glad tidings of great joy which shall be to all people.” Not even their own “dedicated” devotees can have “fullness of joy” in this teaching, because many of their own dear friends and relatives are not joining with them, and will, they apparently believe, subsequently suffer annihilation.
Just a little reflection should reveal how ridiculous is their present position. They themselves admit their imperfections, their fallibility and monstrous mistakes of the past (such as Millions Now Living Will Never Die, the return of the Ancient Worthies by 1925, etc.). “When thy judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness” (Isa. 26:9); and they will not learn it from fallible teachers who are not themselves certain of many of their teachings (such as the chronology, etc. ), but they will learn it from perfect teachers, who will be “princes in all the earth.” “Out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.” (Isa. 2:3)
As That Servant has so well taught, the Truth is not for the world now, though there be many good and honorable people who have a measure of appreciation for the “good tidings” – the gospel, the good news – but do not accept it in the full sense. They are not of the “many that are called,” but are measurably blinded by “the god of this world.” (2 Cor. 4:4) And certainly a blind man cannot be justly faulted if he stubs his toe against a stone. “I desired mercy [not condemnation for those who cannot comprehend], and not sacrifice [feverish efforts on street corners – a “zeal not according to knowledge”], and the knowledge of God [the true understanding of the great Plan of the Ages as it was explained by That Servant] more than burnt offerings.” (Hosea 6:6)
“There is none so blind as he who will not see” – but this does not apply to the fully faithful who “continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them.” (2 Tim. 3:14) They do this from a “good and honest heart” and can readily discern between Truth and Error, thereby continue to “grow in Grace and in the Knowledge’ of our Beloved Lord. “Light [truth] is sown for the righteous [the consecrated], and gladness [the joys of the truth] for the upright in heart [for the fully faithful].” (Psa. 97:11)
(John J. Hoefle, No. 191, May 1971)
“IN THE VALLEY OF THE SHADOW”
BROTHER ROBERTO A. BLANDON finished his course on December 23, 1998. He was 82 years old. He was a structural design engineer for Public Service, Newark, NJ for 25 years, retiring in 1980. He attended Purdue University where he received an engineering degree in 1941 and Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he received an aeronautical engineering degree in 1944. He was a member of the alumni associations of both universities. Born in Leon, Nicaragua, he lived in Maplewood before moving to West Long Branch, NJ eighteen years ago.
Surviving are his wife, Helen; a son, Ronald R., Monmouth Beach, NJ; and three sisters, Stella Blandon, Leon, Nicaragua, Nelly Blandon and Teresita Love, both of South Miami, FL.
He was not a believer in any denominations, but when he first heard the Truth, he accepted it immediately. “...Everyone that is of the truth heareth my voice.” (John 18:37) He is now “asleep in Jesus” and is awaiting the resurrection of the just.
Here are some of the beautiful remarks made by Rev. John Kleinkeksel at Roberto’s funeral:
“We thank God that through the grace of Jesus Christ, blots can be made to contribute to beauty of character. We praise God for the love that judges a life, a family and a congregation, not by its blunders of blots, but by its entirety. God help us to turn to place a garland of understanding around the mistakes of others, in knowing how easy it is to err.
“Thank you Roberto Blandon for everything you have done to bring beauty and love to our world. May we spread the fragrance of Christ’s love during the time remaining for us as well.”
SISTER DORA WALCOTT of Trinidad, WI. Finished her course on July 23, 1998. She was 93 years old. She did not have children, but is survived by grand nephews and nieces. However, she had mothered quite a few children, some not even blood relatives, one of whom made the funeral arrangements. Some relatives traveled from the USA for the service, which was conducted by Brother John. She was faithful in all her commitments and was loved, not only by her immediate ecclesia, but by all who knew her. She always looked forward to the Kingdom and we believe she will be one of the “princes in all the earth.” (Psa. 45:16)