My dear Brethren: Grace and peace through our Beloved Master!
Some of our readers – a few not actively associated with us – have requested that we present a brief analysis of the Bible Chronology. This controversial subject has attracted the attention of some outstanding theological minds, a few of whom we shall discuss herein.
BISHOP JAMES USSHER – “(b. Jan. 4, 1581, Dublin – d. March 21, 1656, Reigate, Surrey) scholar and Archbishop of Armagh. He devised the system of chronology that became the source for the dates printed in the margin of many Bible editions, including the later‑criticized placing of the date of creation at 4004 BC Became professor of theological controversies and twice vice chancellor of his alma mater, Trinity College, Dublin. From 1640 to the time of his death he resided in England. From 1647 to 1654 he was preacher at Lincoln’s Inn, a London Law Academy. An expert in Semitic languages – collected manuscripts both from the Orient and from Irish history.”
There are a number of bad air-holes in his chronology calculations, which we shall discuss briefly later on. He lived during the time King James had the Bible translated into English (1610). Quite a few intellectuals have made comment on Ussher’s chronology; and, of those we have read, almost all of them say he has made important mistakes. Follows the comment from one of them:
“There is more or less uncertainty about all dates earlier than David and Solomon. Ussher’s dates in the margins of most of our Bibles, are not authoritative, but are convenient for keeping the order and succession of events. He finds the date of Adam, the first man, by a computation from the list of ages of the patriarchs given in Gen. 5, and they would be correct, if he had interpreted the record rightly. But it may be – as even conservatives think – that many links have been omitted, and only the more marked ones enumerated... The chronology of the United Kingdom has been tested and modified by the Assyrian Eponym cannon found on slabs discovered in the ruins of Nineveh.”
However, some of Ussher’s critics, in attempting to correct him, make a worse mess of it than he did. As most of our readers know, Josephus gives us very good information about the Jews and contemporary occurrences in neighboring nations; but his dates are very unreliable. And, where the cold figures of mathematics are involved, it cannot be almost, it must be exact. If the foundation is fragile, the whole structure will also be fragile. Similar confusion exists on the life, work and time of Jesus; but here Josephus is very emphatic that Jesus was the Messiah. The historian was contemporary with Jesus; and had first‑hand information of many of His miracles, which works convinced him that Jesus was the Christ.
This from another source: “The nations of antiquity did not have a uniform system of chronology; nor did they entertain the same notions and feel the same need of an exact and unvarying chronological method as does the modern world. The Assyrians and Babylonians appear to have been confident of their ability to date events of remote antiquity; but, as far as known, they did not have an era serving as a fixed standard from which to reckon all occurrences, but named each year after a public official (eponym or limmu). A list of these annual eponyms was kept... In Babylonian, Palestine and Egypt documents were frequently dated by the regnal year of the reigning monarch. Unfortunately the scribes did not always reckon uniformly; but under the same king some reckoned the accession year on the first regnal year, while others considered the civil twelve‑month which followed the accession as the first year of the reign. Furthermore, the son was not infrequently associated with his father on the throne, and some scribes treated the first year of association with the father, and others the first of the sole reign, as the first regnal year.”
From this it is readily apparent that ancient history is not at all reliable in its dates; and this is undoubtedly the reason we are given very exact dates in the Bible. “On the selfsame day” (Ex. 12:17) the Jews left Egypt for Canaan.
And further from the same author: “Dates were placed in the margin of the Authorized Version in 1701. They represent the chronological scheme of Ussher, archbishop of Armagh, which he published in his “Annales Veteria et Novi Testamenti in 1650‑1654. His work was careful and scholarly, and served a useful purpose for two and a half centuries. It gives only one of several possible arrangements. It is based in crucial points on Ussher’s private interpretation of disputed passages, in some of which he clearly erred, as has been proved in recent years. His system was worked out from the standpoint of modern chronological conceptions, and fails to do justice to the different notions which prevailed in antiquity. It was constructed without the invaluable aid of data which have been brought to light by modern research... A few dates are fixed, and the chronology of certain periods is established... Much is tentative and is useful only for observing the sequence of events.”
WILLIAM MILLER – “(1782‑1849), American religious enthusiast who began preaching in 1831 that the present world would end approximately in 1843 with the bodily arrival (“advent”) of Christ. The Millerite movement declined after 1845, but elements of the group later organized the present Advent Christian Church (1860) and the larger Society of Seventh‑Day Adventists (1863).”
It is our opinion that William Miller had an excellent mathematical mind, a man of high scruples and great sincerity in what he believed. He received much ridicule and persecution from other religious groups; but we ourselves are persuaded that his dates were mostly quite sound, but his expectations for those dates were wrong. We may sometime give detail and our own comments on some of his calculations.
“RUSSELL, CHARLES TAZE, popularly called Pastor Russell. (b. Feb. 16, 1852, Pittsburgh, Pa. – d. Oct. 31, 1916, Pampa, Texas), founder of the International Bible Students Association, forerunner of Jehovah’s Witnesses (q.v.). Of Presbyterian and Congregational background, Russell renounced the creeds of orthodox Christian denominations and in 1872 organized an independent Bible study class in Pittsburgh. From 1877 he preached that Christ’s second advent would be invisible, that the end of the Gentile times would come in 1914, followed by war between capitalism and communism or socialism, after which God’s Kingdom by Christ would rule the whole earth. Russell (who was never ordained) dedicated his life and his considerable fortune to preaching Christ’s millennial reign. In 1879 he started a Bible journal later called the Watchtower, and in 1884 founded the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society, which became a flourishing publishing business. His own books and booklets (notably six Volumes of Studies in the Scriptures) reached a circulation of sixteen million copies in 35 languages, and 2,000 newspapers published his weekly sermons.” (From Encyclopedia Britannica)
It is our opinion that Pastor Russell gave us the correct chronology in the second volume of his Studies in the Scriptures – The Time Is At Hand – and we shall offer brief comments and figures from that book, with perhaps some of our own comments added. Therefore, we shall omit quotation marks; but we would emphasize that we are not attempting to palm any of his conclusions off as our own.
In this chapter we present the Bible evidence which indicates that six thousand years from the creation of Adam were complete with AD 1872; and hence that, since AD 1872, we are chronologically entered upon the seventh thousand, or the Millennium, the forepart of which, the Day of the Lord, the day of trouble, is to witness the breaking into pieces of the kingdoms of this world and the establishment of the Kingdom of God under the whole heavens.
While an understanding of chronology is not essential to salvation (some of the very best of Christians throughout the Age did not have a clear understanding of it), yet a correct knowledge of it is of tremendous assistance to understanding the present “signs of the times,” the parallel dispensations, and many prophecies that apply especially to our time. We must ascertain first of all where we are on the stream of time. At present there are all sorts of “strong delusions” being bandied about – talking about a hundred thousand or a million years back in the history of man; but a proper understanding of chronology will quickly demonstrate the nonsense of such wild ideas. Chronology as it pertains to man must of necessity reveal to us a date for the beginning of man.
It should be readily apparent from what we have written thus far that we place little confidence in the efforts of the “smart boys” to give us this knowledge; but we are persuaded that the Bible does just that, so we shall confine ourselves to the Bible. Jesus said the Bible is “the word of Truth” (2 Cor. 6:7); also, it is very much void of flippant talk or window‑dressing in what it contains. Therefore, the dates given us in Genesis 5 must be there for a purpose; and the first line in that chapter states it this way: “This is the book of the generations of Adam.” Also, the Bible tells us in Acts 17:26, “God hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on the face of the earth.” This being true, then we all have a common ancestry, even though we may appear vastly different from our fellows, which has been caused by privations, climactic conditions, variation of diet, etc. The extremes of heat and cold have in themselves made great difference in appearance, habits of life, diet, etc., which we shall not detail here. However, there is one outstanding feature of being which separates man from beast: None of the beasts have any chin; whereas, we do not find a man anywhere without one, although the size and shape of the chin reveal much to the experts on physiognomy.
While there is much difference of opinion among those who accept the Bible record, the difference is limited to hundreds of years only; and not to millions, or even thousands of years as among evolutionists, atheists, et al. Of course, there can be but one true answer to the years from Adam’s creation; and it is the purpose of this paper to demonstrate the truth of that conviction – not about the number of those years, but the exact number of years from creation to where we now are.
There is much sound logic in the theory that the great flood of Noah’s day was caused by the breaking of a great water ring about the earth, beginning at the North and South Poles, and immediately putting into deep freeze all plant and animal life there. Just in recent years animals such as the deer, moose, etc., have been found near the North Pole with undigested grass in their stomachs, which is surely clear evidence that part of the world was at one time verdant and sustained the life of herbivorous animals. There is no guesswork about this piece of knowledge, no necessity to “estimate” its import.
If we examine the records of the Gentile nations, there is just no reliability for more than about three thousand years; the first date in history on which the Gentile “experts” can agree is 536 BC It was in that year that Cyrus the Great allowed the Jews to return to Israel from their Babylonian captivity. That was about 2500 years back. Thus we can readily see how empty are the guesses of the evolutionists, etc., when they talk about a hundred thousand or a million years back. They are relying merely on untrustworthy tradition – loud talk which impresses some people who do not stop to examine it. The great Roman empire dates back only about 2800 years to its beginning, and even the first centuries of that are wrapped in uncertain records for three thousand years ago. If we consider Greece – at one time the intellectual center of the world – their dates are very sketchy prior to about 600 BC
Thus, we are left with the Bible record, which is very positive in its statements about the origin of man a little more than six thousand years ago, of which more detail later on. The statement is very clear that the men who wrote that book wrote “as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.” (2 Pet. 1:21)
As with history, so with chronology, the world has no reliable means of tracing back more than about twenty‑eight hundred years. Says Prof. Fisher, of Yale University: “An exact method of establishing dates was slowly reached. The invention of eras was indispensable to this end. The earliest definite time for the dating of events was established by Babylon, the era of Nabonassar, 747 BC The Greeks (from about 300 BC) dated events from the first recorded victory at the Olympic games, 776 BC These games occurred every fourth year. Each Olympiad was thus a period of four years. The Romans, though not for some centuries after the founding of Rome, dated from that event; i.e., from 753 BC”
The history of the remote past is so filled with vagaries and mythical traditions as to make them valueless for chronological data and unworthy of consideration. Says the American Cyclopedia: “The history of ancient nations, unless we make an exception in the case of the Hebrews, goes back for mythical periods of thousands or millions of years; and even after the records begin to assume a historical aspect, the discrepancies are very great... The Assyrian, Babylonian and Egyptian inscriptions are in extinct languages, and in characters long obsolete... Greek and Roman dates are authenticated to the first Olympiad, 776 BC, and the establishment of the Consulate, 510 BC, previous to which they are legendary. Herodotus is valuable only as to events of his own time, about 450 BC, and those of a century or two earlier.
There are many other reliable writings, but we consider the foregoing to be sufficient. However, we add this comment from Clinton: “The history contained in the Hebrew Scriptures presents a contrast to the early accounts of the Greeks. In the latter we trace with difficulty a few obscure facts preserved to us by the poets, who transmitted, with all the embellishments of poetry and fable, what they had received from oral tradition. In the annals of the Hebrew nation, we have authentic narratives written by contemporaries under the guidance of inspiration. What they have delivered to us comes accordingly under a double sanction. They were aided by divine inspiration, in recording facts upon which, as mere human witnesses, their evidence would be valid.”
The Bible, our God‑provided history of the first three thousand years, is the only work in the world which, beginning with Adam, the first man mentioned in history, monument or inscription, whose name, the time of his creation and death are recorded, and from whom his descendants can be traced by name and age in successive links for nearly four thousand years, furnishes us a clear and connected history down to a period where secular history can be accepted as reliable. As we have often stated, this date is 536 BC, which is a well accepted and established date. From that date the Bible is pretty well silent, God undoubtedly realizing no further need for it; we may accept secular records from that date on. Thus we have a clear and connected record down to the present time. However, if we accept the prophecies in the Bible, we are carried on through the next thousand years from now, not in a detailed way, but generally clear enough to give us a good idea of what lies ahead of us. Taken together, the true history and prophecies of the Bible provide us with an overall picture of the whole course of events from creation to the “restitution of all things” (Acts 3:19‑23) and is thus a chart of all history.
From this record we have the evidence that from the creation of Adam to AD 1873 is six thousand years. The seventh thousand‑year day began then, so that we are now already over one hundred years in that seventh day. And before this day is completed, we may expect the great healing of the human race that is so vividly shown in John 5:1‑9, where the cripple was healed on the “sabbath day.”
The immense growth of Socialism, Nihilism and Communism since 1873 are unmistakable evidences that we are now in that time when “the God of Heaven is setting up a kingdom that shall never be destroyed... it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms [the present social order], and it shall stand for ever.” (Dan. 2:44) And it is from the chronology that we are enabled to construct this reliable statement, of which we now present a factual framework:
FROM THE CREATION OF ADAM
To the end of the flood---------------------------------------------------------- 1656 years
Thence to the covenant with Abraham-------------------------------------- 427
Thence to the Exodus from Egypt and giving the Law----------------- 430
Thence to the division of Canaan---------------------------------------------- 46
The period of the Judges (the last one being Samuel)----------------- 450
The period of the Kings (the last one being Zedekiah)---------------- 513
The period of the desolation (Babylonian captivity)--------------------- 70
Thence to AD --------------------------------------------------------------------- 1536
Thence to AD 1873--------------------------------------------------------------- 1872
As we analyze each of these periods, our readers will have little difficulty in confirming our figures from the Divine Record. While there are two breaks in the Old Testament record, these are clarified by the New Testament. Adam lived 130 years and begat a son called Seth.(Gen. 5:3); Seth lived 105 years and begat Enos (5:6); Enos lived 90 years and begat Cainan (5:9); Cainan lived 70 years and begat Mahalaleel (5:12); Mahalaleel lived 65 years and begat Jared (5:15); Jared lived 162 years and begat Enoch (5:18); Enoch lived 65 years and begat Methuselah (5:21); Methusaleh lived 187 years and begat Lamech (5:25); Lamech lived 182 years and begat Noah (5:28); Noah was 600 years old when the flood of waters was upon the earth (Gen. 7:6). Total from the creation of Adam to the day the flood was dried up was 1656 years (Gen. 8:13). In passing, we mention here that “Noah lived after the flood three hundred and fifty years.” (Gen. 9:28) “And all the days of Noah were 950 years.” Thus he lived 600 years “in the world that was,” and 350 years in “this, present evil world” (Gal. 1:4). A very remarkable career!
AFTER THE FLOOD – “Shem begat Arphaxad 2 years after the flood (Gen. 11:10); Arphaxad lived 35 years and begat Salah (11:12); Salah lived 30 years and begat Eber (11:14); Eber lived 34 years and begat Peleg (11:16); Peleg lived 30 years and begat Reu (11:18); Reu lived 32 years and begat Serug (11:20); Serug lived 30 years and begat Nahor(11:22); Nahor lived 29 years and begat Terah (11:24); the days of Terah were 205 years and he died (11:32). Total from the flood to the covenant with Abraham at the death of Terah was 427 years.
While the above is all so simple and exact, the next period is not so easily grasped; the direct line of chronology is broken until after the Exodus of Israel from Egypt. This figure could not be obtained at all were it not for the help given us by Paul and Stephen, who wrote and spoke by inspiration. Paul says this period was 430 years (Gal. 3:17). As shown by a comparison of Gen. 12:1-5,7 and Acts 7:2-5, the covenant was made as soon as Abraham had fully complied with the conditions on which he was to receive it – as soon as he had entered Canaan, which he did immediately after his father died, who died in Haran, on the way to Canaan. Having the date of the Covenant thus established by Stephen and Paul’s statement that the Law was 430 years after the Covenant, the break in the Old Testament chronology is thus bridged by the New Testament. The Covenant was made just after he entered the land. (Gen. 12:5‑7). Thus we have the date of the Covenant, and the beginning of the 430 years as immediately following Terah’s death, which completes the chain of the chronology to the giving of the Law. The first feature of the Law was the Passover – which was instituted the same day that Israel left Egypt. (Ex. 12:41-43,47,50,51) This then establishes the third period.
FROM THE EXODUS TO THE DIVISION OF CANAAN AMONG THE TRIBES – Israel’s forty years of wandering in the Wilderness of Sin (Heb. 3:8,9) was followed by six years of war in Canaan, and dividing the land among the tribes.
THE PERIOD OF THE JUDGES – This is the most difficult portion of the chronology, from the division of the land to the anointing of Saul as king. It is usually termed the period of the Judges, though judges did not fill that office continuously. The record given in the book of Judges and Samuel gives nineteen periods, approximating a total of 450 years; but they are disconnected, broken, lapped and tangled so much that we can arrive at no definite conclusion from them, and should be obliged to conclude, as others have done, that nothing positive could be known on the subject, were it not that the New Testament supplies the lack. Paul stated that after God divided their land to them by lot “He gave unto then judges about [during] the space of 450 years, until Samuel the Prophet. Afterward they desired a king, and God gave unto them Saul.” (Acts 13:19‑21)
THE PERIOD OF THE KINGS – The record from Saul to Zedekiah is as follows: Saul 40 years (Acts 13:21); David 40 years (I Chr. 29:27); Solomon 40 years (2 Chr. 9:30); Rehoboam 17 years (12:13); Abijah 3 years (13:2); Asa 41 years (16:13); Jehoshapat 25 years (20:31); Jehoram 8 years (21:20); Ahaziah one year (22:2); Athaliah 6 years (22:12); Jehoash 40 years (24:1); Amaziah 29 years (25:1); Ussiah 52 years (26:3); Jotham 16 years (27:1); Ahaz 16 years (28:1); Hezekiah 29 years (29:1); Manasseh 55 years (33:1); Amon 2 years (33:21); Josiah 31 years (34:1); Jehoiakim 11 years (36:5); Zedekiah 11 years (36:11). The total period of the kings was 513 years.
THE SEVENTY YEARS OF DESOLATION – “That the land had enjoyed her sabbaths; for as long as she lay desolate she kept sabbath, to fulfil threescore and ten years.” (2 Chr. 36:20‑23) From 536 BC to AD 1 is not covered by the Bible record; but is well established by secular history. Ptolemy, a learned Greek‑Egyptian, a geometer and astronomer, has well established these figures; they are generally accepted by scholars, and known as Ptolemy’s Canon. Combining the foregoing figures, we have from the creation of Adam to the year AD 1 a total of 4128 years; and adding 1872 years of the Christian era, we have an even 6,000 years from the creation of Adam.
USSHER’S CHRONOLOGY AGAIN – This chronology compared with the foregoing is 124 years off – four errors of 18, 4, 2 and 100 years. Ussher dates the beginning of desolation of the land eighteen years earlier – due to the capture of a number of the best Jews (probably including Daniel) before Zedekiah was overthrown. But that event did not start the desolation of the land; that did not come until Zedekiah was dethroned and carried away to Babylon.
Also, he gives the reign of Jehoram as four years; whereas the Bible gives it as eight years. (2 Chr. 21:5; 2 Kgs. 8:17) Of the two years, Ussher makes a mistake of one year in the reign of Ahaz – 15 years, but the Bible gives it as 16 years. All these mistakes are the result of Ussher going elsewhere for his information, instead of accepting the Bible for his authority. He makes another similar mistake of one year in the reign of Jehoash – 39 years, but the Bible gives it as 40 years. Then he makes a mistake of 100 years in the period of the Judges. 1 Kings 6:1 says the fourth year of Solomon’s reign was 480 years from the Exodus from Egypt; but it should read 580 years; due probably to a copyist’s mistake, because the New Testament clearly gives this period as 450 years.
Here we digress a little to say the Jehovah’s Witnesses had the correct computation of the chronology as given in our figures above; but they have now gone back to Ussher’s error, and count the period as 550 years, as he did. Thus, they are now so badly confused they do not know where they are. Using these erroneous figures, they came up with 1975 for the beginning of Armageddon; but not a thing happened in 1975 – just as nothing happened in 1925, when they made their first real bad blunder in their figures on the Jubilee cycles. Ussher has 4005 years from the creation of Adam to the year AD 1; whereas, the Bible gives that time as 4128 years; and we accept the Bible above all secular writings.
Here we offer one more digression: The Jewish lunar year is 360 days; and that would make quite a difference with the solar year over a long period of time; but they now follow the Metonic cycle, a calculation which the pagan philosopher Meton produced in AD 360, where he adds seven intercalated years to every nineteen years. The last month of the Jewish year is Adar; and in those seven years he adds Ve-Adar, or the second Adar. Thus from the year AD 1 to 1982 there is only a few weeks difference in the solar and lunar calculations.
Since 1916 there has been much tampering with the chronology as given us through That Servant, the main offenders being the Jehovah’s Witnesses, although it should be said that some sixty years ago, when they still held to Brother Russell’s chronology, their leaders offered an excellent defense of that chronology against other groups that were contending that Brother Russell had made a 19‑year mistake in his reckoning of the Gentile Times. Since that time, however, the Witnesses have rejected their own teachings on many time features; and now they are badly confused with their own reckoning in various ways. But in this paper we have discussed only the chronology as we understand it.
As just stated, other groups were vigorously contending about that 19-year mistake(?). But, when those nineteen years had come and gone in 1933 without the slightest hint anywhere that there was anything special about that date, they have simply dropped the subject without a word of further discussion. They had latched on to their error by accepting the figures of a certain “foolish virgin” (a Doctor H. Gratham Guiness), who had influenced many prominent minds with his error; and we are often impressed with this as we read the comments of some of them, and the dates they give – over a hundred years ago. Thus, it is very easy to become confused on some of their conclusions if we read them lightly – without stopping to determine if they are right or wrong.
SUMMARY – The Chronology, as we have herein presented it, is thoroughly Scriptural, and is proven so by the Bible’s chronological data, the jubilee cycles, the times of the Gentiles (2520 years), the 2520 and 1845‑year parallels, the pyramid and other time features presented by the Edgar Brothers’ time charts. It has stood the test of time, and is impregnable to any assaults that may be made upon it. It is reasonable and mathematically sound.
YEARS BEFORE AND AFTER THE GREAT FLOOD
Many people have questioned the length of the years before and after the flood due to the long years of life of many living before the flood; but it is our opinion that the years before and after the flood were solar years of the same length then that they are now. However, we would stress that there was no fermentation before the flood because there had been no rain: “The Lord God had not caused it to rain upon the earth... But there went up a mist from the earth, and watered the whole face of the ground.” (Gen. 2:5,6) Thus it is probable that the air itself was much different after the flood. The air before the flood was probably 80% oxygen and 20% nitrogen; whereas, it now is about 80% nitrogen and 20% oxygen.
One gifted writer offers this comment about it: “The immense duration of life assigned to these ten Patriarchs (before the flood) has always been the occasion of difficulty. Attempts have been made to explain away the figures. (a) It has been suggested that the names of the Patriarchs represent dynasties. But the mention of the first‑born and of other children obviously refers to personal history. Nor does the transference of these enormous figures to the duration of dynasties greatly diminish the improbability of their literal historicity. (b) It has been suggested that the Hebrew word for ‘year’ (shanah) is used in this chapter (Gen. 5) to denote a shorter period of time. But this arbitrary solution is devoid of any evidence in its favor. Familiar Hebrew words, like “years” in this chapter, must not be supposed, because of our difficulties in interpretation, to require new meanings.
“There is no reason not to interpret the statements respecting the longevity of the ten Antediluvian Patriarchs quite literally. The account of them belongs to the domain of primitive tradition. It would be strange, if the primitive unverifiable tradition were not accompanied by the exaggerations which popular legend weaves around prehistoric names.”
Many of our readers are quite familiar with the chronology as given herein, because we have taken the correct Bible chronology from the Second Volume of Studies in the Scriptures as compiled by That Servant; but we believe the words of St. Peter (2 Peter 1:12,13) are very timely here: “I will not be negligent to put you always in remembrance of these things, though ye know them, and be established in the Present Truth.”
Sincerely your brother, John J. Hoefle, Pilgrim
(Reprint No. 327, September 1982)
LETTERS OF GENERAL INTEREST
Dear Sister Emily: Warm Christian greetings through the Lord!
My apologies for being so late in answering your kind letter. The Memorial observance this year was a very special event for me. A feeling of solemn concentration prevailed among the partakers, with all fixing their minds and hearts on the true meaning of our Lord’s sacrifice. In returning home this warm personal feeling continued into the remaining hours of the evening. It was very moving. We were about 40 in number, and it was right here in my home town, so it was very convenient.
My trip to France was very enjoyable. Life has become very expensive over there. The people continue to groan under the stress of the Time of Trouble. The same problems that plague Americans also affect the French. There are about 5 million unemployed (10% of the population). The government is broke. Racism is growing, especially against the many new immigrants coming in. The French had just held an election to overturn the present socialist administration. Of course we think of Jer. 10:23 and note how feeble are man’s attempts to correct the problems of the present order. Only the change of the future Kingdom New Order will do that.
I was not able to meet with any of the Bible Students. I did, however, visit some of the Jehovah’s Witnesses over there that I have known for over 20 years. Thus I used some of my vacation time to “witness” to them – explaining why I left the “organization” in favor of the original teaching of Pastor Russell, which had become so grossly distorted when Rutherford illegally seized control of the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society. They listened politely but were very uncomfortable. Few Witnesses ever take the time to examine their own history. If they did – and did so objectively without a closed mind, they would quickly recognize the errors in which they now believe and teach.
I hope you received the post card I sent from France. I am with you in serving our Heavenly Father (Prov. 18:10). God grant you the strength to keep up your works of love.
Your brother in Christ, ------- (MICHIGAN)
I sure appreciate the literature you sent. We used to have Bible Study in Denver, but now they are gone – moved away.
The Truth is so wonderful in giving us hope in this dark and dying old world. I believe in the New World government and Kingdom under Christ, and have believed all my life. I used to be a Jehovah’s Witness but no more!
May the Lord continue to bless you. With Christian love, ------- (COLORADO)
What a shame that your lovely letter of December 28, 1992, is still with me here. It was such a pleasure to have it and take in its many expressions of encouragement and hope! Thank you most warmly for your friendship and your continued loyalty!
You said nothing on your health, your eyes, etc. We hope and pray that things are as they should be, and that you are enjoying full health and your usual well-proven energy!
Since you wrote there is a new President in the U.S., and this coming week another ‘round’ on Middle East talks are scheduled to begin. We all hope that this time all concerned and involved will be rational and fully cooperative so as to insure real progress. We all, who live in this area, are so very much looking forward to substantial moves in the right direction.
Meanwhile we enjoy a gorgeous Spring. We are blessed with a plentiful rainfall, and now everything is lusciously green and in full blossom.
This last week we concluded the annual Passover celebration, the reminder of serfdom in Egypt and the beginning of the 40-year long journey to Sinai and the Promised Land!
Be well and take care. With every Good Wish from Jerusalem and a
Warm SHALOM, Michael Pragai (ISRAEL)