My dear Brethren: Grace and peace through our Beloved Master!
In our paper No. 412 we offered brief discussion leading up to the Passover, but we now go back to some of the things preceding that great event. The arrival of Moses in Egypt, when he was eighty years old, types Jesus returning at His Second Advent – to deliver first of all His faithful followers from antitypical Egypt; and the arrival of Aaron with Moses types the faithful followers of Jesus at the Second Advent in their capacity of mouthpieceship for Jesus. Knowing as we do that “the Lord is that spirit” (2 Cor. 3:17), it becomes readily apparent that He would speak through human agencies upon His return to earth; and in due course “That Servant” was maneuvered into the position of spokesman to declare the purposes of that return.
This is typically set forth beginning with chapter five of Exodus; and, since type and antitype must correspond in every detail, we should expect to glean a wealth of understanding from the things done typically by Moses and Aaron. Moses and Aaron went first to the elders of Israel to inform them that “the Lord had looked upon their affliction” (Ex. 4:31), which typified that the Church’s first work at the Second Advent would be with the leaders of the Church. The first public work done in the Parousia was the cry, “Behold the bridegroom” (Matt. 25:6) – from 1877 to 1878. In a literary way this was done through the magazine, The Herald of the Morning, by the small book, The Three Worlds, and with the tract, The Object and Manner of our Lord’s Return. All of these writings were augmented by public lectures, the literature being circulated by pilgrim speakers and by volunteers.
It was further greatly enhanced by gaining an understanding of the sixteenth chapter of Leviticus. The unfolding of this great type at first staggered even Bro. Russell, so he called together the leading lights of the time who discussed the interpretation for eight days, at the end of which time, having been unable to find any flaws in it, they put their stamp of approval on it and began to circulate it among the brethren. Pharaoh’s defiance of Moses – “Who is the Lord, that I should obey his voice?” (Ex. 5: 2) – typifies the attitude of the leaders in Great Babylon in refusing to accept the truths contained in those publications.
MOSES THE EMANCIPATOR
Inasmuch as Moses is the outstanding man in liberating the Jews from Egyptian slavery, it would seem in order here to offer some detail about this remarkable, ingenious and magnetic personality – details which may be gleaned from secular writings, but not found in the Bible.
The Bible does tell us that the baby Moses was rescued from the River Nile by Pharaoh’s daughter, but it is for the historian Josephus to tell us that her name was Thermuthis, and we quote from him further on the subject:
“Thermuthis was the king’s daughter. She was now diverting herself by the banks of the river; and seeing a cradle borne along by the current, she sent some that could swim, and bid them bring the cradle to her. When those that were sent on this errand came to her with the cradle, and she saw the little child, she was greatly in love with it, on account of its largeness and beauty; for God had taken such great care in the formation of Moses, that he caused him to be thought worthy of bringing up, and providing for, by all those that had taken the most fatal resolutions, on account of the dread of his nativity, for the destruction of the rest of the Hebrew nation. Thermuthis bid them to bring her a woman that might afford her breast to the child; yet would not the child admit of her breast, but turned away from it, and did the like to many other women.
“Now Miriam was by when this happened, not to appear to be there on purpose, but only as staying to see the child; and she said, ‘It is in vain that thou, O Queen, callest for these women for the nourishing of the child, who are no way of kin to it; but still, if thou wilt order one of the Hebrew women to be brought, perhaps it may admit the breast of one of its own nation.’ Now since she seemed to speak well, Thermuthis bid her procure such a one, and to bring one of those Hebrew women that gave suck. So when she had such authority given her, she came back and brought the mother, who was known to nobody there. And now the child gladly admitted the breast, and seemed to stick close to it; and so it was, that, at the queen’s desire, the nursing of the child was entirely entrusted to the mother.
“Hereupon it was that Thermuthis imposed this name Mouses upon him, from what had happened when he was put into the river; for the Egyptians call water by the name of Mo, and such as are saved out of it by the name of Uses; so by putting these two words together, they imposed this name upon him; and he was, by the confession of all, according to God’s prediction, as well for his greatness of mind as for his contempt of difficulties, the best of all the Hebrews; for Abraham was his ancestor, of the seventh generation. For Moses was the son of Amram, who was the son of Caath, whose father, Levi, was the son of Jacob, who was the son of Isaac, who was the son of Abraham.
“Now Moses’ understanding became superior to his age, nay, far beyond that standard; and when he was taught, he discovered greater quickness of apprehension than was usual at his age; and his actions at that time promised greater, when he should come to the age of a man. God did also give him that tallness, when he was but three years old, as was wonderful; and for his beauty, there was nobody so unpolite as, when they saw Moses, they were not greatly surprised at the beauty of his countenance; nay, it happened frequently, that those that met him as he was carried along the road, were obliged to turn again upon seeing the child, that they left what they were about, and stood still a great while to look on him; for the beauty of the child was so remarkable and natural to him on many accounts, that it detained the spectators, and made them stay longer to look upon him.
“Thermuthis, therefore, perceiving him to be so remarkable a child, adopted him for her son, having no child of her own. And when one time she had carried Moses to her father, and said she thought to make him her father’s successor, if it should please God she should have no legitimate child of her own; and said to him, ‘I have brought up a child who is of a divine form [“Moses was exceeding fair” – Acts 7:20], and of a generous mind; and as I have received him from the bounty of the river, in a wonderful manner, I thought proper to adopt him for my son, and the heir of thy kingdom.’ And when she said this, she put the infant into her father’s hands: so he took him, and hugged him close to his breast; and on his daughter’s account, and in a pleasant way, put his diadem upon his head; but Moses threw it down to the ground, and in a puerile mood, he wreathed it round, and trod upon it with his feet; which seemed to bring along with it an evil presage concerning the kingdom of Egypt.
“But when the sacred scribe saw this (he was the same person who foretold that his nativity would bring the dominion of that kingdom low), he made a violent attempt to kill him: and crying out in a frightful manner, he said, ‘This, O King! this child is he of whom God foretold, that if we kill him we shall be in no danger; he himself affords an attestation to the prediction of the same thing, by his trampling upon thy government, and treading upon thy diadem. Take him, therefore, out of the way, and deliver the Egyptians from the fear they are in about him; and deprive the Hebrews of the hope they have of being encouraged by him.’ But Thermuthis prevented him, and snatched the child away. And the king was not hasty to slay him, God himself, whose providence protected Moses, inclining the king to spare him. He was, therefore, educated with great care. So the Hebrews depended on him, and were of good hopes that great things would be done by him; but the Egyptians were suspicious of what would follow such his education. Yet because, if Moses had been slain, there was no one, either akin or adopted, that had any oracle on his side for pretending to the crown of Egypt, and likely to be of greater advantage to them, they abstained from killing him.
“War With The Ethiopians – Moses, therefore, when he was born, and brought up in the foregoing manner, came to age of maturity, made his virtue manifest to the Egyptians; and shewed that he was born for the bringing them down, and raising the Israelites; and the occasion he laid hold of was this: The Ethiopians, who are next neighbors to the Egyptians, made an inroad into their country, which they seized upon, and carried off the effects of the Egyptians, who in their rage, fought against them, and revenged the affronts they had received from them; but being overcome in battle, some of them were slain, and the rest ran away in a shameful manner, and by that means saved themselves; whereupon the Ethiopians followed after them in the pursuit; and thinking that it would be a mark of cowardice if they did not subdue all Egypt, they went on to subdue the rest with greater vehemence; and when they had tasted the sweets of the country, they never left off the prosecution of the war; and as the nearest parts had not courage enough at first to fight with them, they proceeded as far as Memphis, and the sea itself; while not one of the cities was able to oppose them.
“The Egyptians, under this sad oppression, betook themselves to their oracles and prophecies; and when God had given them this counsel, to make use of Moses the Hebrew and take his assistance, the king commanded his daughter to produce him, that he might be the general of their army. Upon which, when she had made him swear that he would do him no harm, she delivered him to the king, and supposed his assistance would be of great advantage to them. She withal reproached the priest, who, when they had before admonished the Egyptians to kill him, was not ashamed now to own their want of his help.
“So Moses, at the persuasion both of Thermuthis and the king himself, cheerfully undertook the business: and the sacred scribes of both nations were glad; those of the Egyptians, that they should at once overcome their enemies by his valor, and that by the same piece of management Moses would be slain; but those of the Hebrews, that they should escape from the Egyptians, because Moses was to be their general; but Moses prevented the enemies, and took and led his army before those enemies were apprised of his attacking them; for he did not march by the river, but by land, where he gave a wonderful demonstration of his sagacity; for when the ground was difficult to be passed over, because of the multitude of serpents (which it produces in vast numbers, and indeed is singular in some of those productions, which other countries do not breed, and yet such as are worse than others in power and mischief, and an unusual fierceness of sight, some of which ascend out of the ground unseen, and also fly in the air, and so come upon men unawares, and do them a mischief), Moses invented a wonderful stratagem to preserve the army safe, and without hurt; for he made baskets, like unto arks, of sedge, and filled them with ibis, and carried them along with them; which animal is the greatest enemy to serpents imaginable, for they fly from them when they come near them; and as they fly they are caught and devoured by them, as if it were done by the harts; but the ibis are tame creatures, and only enemies to the serpentine kind: but about these ibis I say no more at present, since the Greeks themselves are not unacquainted with this sort of bird.
“As soon, therefore, as Moses was come to the land which was the breeder of these serpents, he let loose the ibis, and by their means repelled the serpentine kind, and used them for his assistants before the army came upon that ground. When he had therefore proceeded thus on his journey, he came upon the Ethiopians before they expected him; and, joining battle with them, he beat them, and deprived them of the hopes they had of success against the Egyptians, and went on in overthrowing their cities, and indeed made a great slaughter of these Ethiopians. Now when the Egyptian army had once tasted of this prosperous success, by the means of Moses, they did not slacken their diligence, insomuch that the Ethiopians were in danger of being reduced to slavery, and all sorts of destruction; and at length they retired to Saba, which was a royal city of Ethiopia, which Cambyses afterward named Meroe, after the name of his own sister.
“However, while Moses was uneasy at the army’s lying idle (for the enemies durst not come to battle), this accident happened: Tharbis was the daughter of the king of the Ethiopians: she happened to see Moses as he led the army near the walls, and fought with great courage; and admiring the subtlety of his undertakings, and believing him to be the author of the Egyptians’ success, when they had before despaired of recovering their liberty, and to be the occasion of the great danger the Ethiopians were in, when they had before boasted of their great achievements, she fell deeply in love with him; and upon the prevalency of that passion, sent to him the most faithful of all her servants to discourse with him about their marriage. He thereupon accepted the offer, on condition she would procure the delivering up of the city; and gave her the assurance of an oath to take her to his wife; and that when he had once taken possession of the city, he would not break his oath to her. No sooner was the agreement made, but it took effect immediately; and when Moses had cut off the Ethiopians, he gave thanks to God, and consummated his marriage, and led the Egyptians back to their own land.”
Josephus has much more to say about Moses, but we leave him now to offer some comments from other capable writers, but we note here that one very prominent commentator refers to him as “this murderer” (presumably because he slew an Egyptian and had to flee to Midian – Ex. 2:15); and the two words we have quoted herein are all we shall offer from that particular source of information, the same undoubtedly being a higher critic.
It is recorded in the last chapter of Josephus above that he relates the marriage of Moses to the Ethiopian princess Tharbis. The Bible is entirely silent about this, except that it does tell us in the twelfth chapter of Numbers that Moses had an Ethiopian woman for his wife. However, both Brother Russell and Brother Johnson are also silent on this subject, although they both had considerable respect for the general content of the historian’s writings, yet they did not consider his dates reliable. We shall not attempt to analyze this tale, except to suggest that we do not have enough information, in our opinion, to state it as a fact.
Following are some comments by Doctor John D. Davis and Doctor Henry Snyder Gehman, who corroborate Josephus in much of what we have copied from him – although they omit much of the enlightening information quoted above:
“The adopted son of a princess required a princely education, and Moses became instructed in all the wisdom of the Egyptians (Acts 7:22), who were then unsurpassed in civilization by any people in the world. This was to fit him for the high office under the government, if not even for the Egyptian throne. But in God’s intention it was to prepare him for the leadership of the Hebrews. He was possessed of great natural ability, and the training which he received schooled him for the great work for which he was destined. He became familiar with court life and intercourse with princes, with the grandeur and pomp of religious worship and with ritualistic conventionalities and symbolism, with letters and the literary ideas of the time. He witnessed the administration of justice, and he acquired a general acquaintance with the arts which were practiced in civilized life. He remembered, however, his origin, believed the promises which had been made to the Hebrew people, and before the close of his sojourn in Egypt he had discovered the call of God to him to be the judge and deliverer of the Israelites.
“He fled from Egypt to the land of Midian... became intimately associated with a people who were descended from Abraham and perhaps worshiped the God of Abraham. (See Ex. 18:10-12) This period was likewise a time of preparation. He enjoyed close fellowship with a leading man of the Midianites, a man of sound judgment (Ex. 18), and a priest. Here Moses widened his acquaintance with religious thought and forms of worship. He learned the roads of the wilderness, its resources, climate, and mode of life of its inhabitants. Amid its solemn grandeur and its deep solitude he had opportunity for reflection.
“Moses took his wife Zipporah and his two sons to return to Egypt [He was then eighty years old]... Arriving in Egypt, he in conjunction with Aaron, repeatedly conveyed to Pharaoh the divine commands... When the departure from Egypt took place, it was Moses who, under divine guidance, led the people. At Sinai he was admitted to intimate relation with God – ‘He spake unto Moses face to face, as a man speaketh unto his friend’ (Ex. 24:9-11; 33:11-12, 17-23; 34:5-29); and he revealed his will to Moses from time to time for the instruction of his people, as he did afterwards to the successive prophets.
“On each of these occasions [in the mountain] he fasted forty days and nights (Ex. 24:18; 34:28), as Elijah afterward did (1 Kings 19:8), both in this respect foreshadowing the similar fast of our Lord. (Matt. 4:2)... When Moses came down from Mount Sinai, after the second sojourn of forty days, with the tables of the law in his hand, the skin of his face shone, sending forth beams (Heb. horns), and the people were afraid to come near him. (Ex. 34:30, RV margin)... He put a veil on his face; but when he went in before the Lord, he took the veil off, until he came out. (Ex. 34:33, A.V.) The RV and I.V., following the Septuagint and the Vulgate, and correctly rendering the Hebrew, say just the contrary: ‘And when Moses had done speaking with them, he put a veil on his face.’
“In the second year of the sojourn of the Israelites in the wilderness, Moses is mentioned as having married a Cushite woman (Num. 12:1). Zipporah may have died during the preceding year, although her death is not recorded. Among the later Jews the story ran that the Cushite woman was an Ethiopian princess named Tharbis, who had fallen in love with Moses on the occasion of his leading an Egyptian army into Ethiopia, while he was still a member of Pharaoh’s household. The tale is evidently a fabrication.”
Next we offer some comments from Peloubet’s Bible Dictionary: “Now begins the third period in Moses’ life [when he was eighty years old]. He meets Aaron, his brother, whom God permitted to be the spokesman, and together they return to Goshen in Egypt. From this time the history of Moses is the history of Israel. Aaron spoke and acted for Moses, and was the permanent inheritor of the sacred staff of power. But Moses was the inspiring soul behind. He is incontestably the chief personage of the history, in a sense in which no one else is described before or since. He was led into a closer communion with the invisible world than was vouchsafed to any other in the Old Testament. On approaching Palestine the office of the leader become blended with that of the general or the conqueror. By Moses the spies were sent to explore the country. Against his advice took place the first disastrous battle at Hormah. To his guidance is ascribed the circuitous route by which the nation approached Palestine from the east, and to his generalship the two successful campaigns in which Sihon and Og were defeated. The narrative is told so briefly that we are in danger of forgetting that at this last stage of his life Moses must have been as much a conqueror and victorious soldier as was Joshua.
“His Character – Moses stands among the few greatest men in history. In every direction he was great and good.
“1. – As A Prophet – A prophet is one who speaks and acts under the direction of God, the medium through which God reveals his will to men.
“2. – As A Saint – Moses’ goodness shines as brightly as his greatness. He was unselfish. He devoted himself at every cost to the good of his people. He encountered every danger for their sakes. He was willing to die to save them. He was the embodiment of love to God and love to man. By seeing God face to face he was becoming transformed into his spiritual likeness.
“3. – His Meekness – Moses was in a sense peculiar to himself the founder and representative of his people; and in accordance with this complete identification of himself with his nation is the only strong personal trait which we are able to gather from his history. (Num. 12:3) The word ‘meek’ is hardly an adequate reading of the Hebrew term, which should be rather ‘much enduring.’ It represents what we should now designate by the word ‘disinterested.’ All that is told of him indicates a withdrawal of himself, a preference of the cause of his nation to his own interests, which makes the most complete example of Jewish patriotism.
“4. – His Imperfection – Two or three times some fault is attributed to Moses, as every saint has failed in some point at some time. There is no garden but has some weeds. But the most unjust thing we can do is to measure its value by its weeds and not by its fruits. ‘By their fruits ye shall know them.’ Moses’ few faults are such that they would never be noticed at all in a worldly man. They are like a broken limb on a tree loaded with magnificent fruit. All God’s works through men are done by imperfect instruments.
“5. – As A Statesman – Inspiration apart, Moses possessed all those endowments and qualities which form the consummate statesman and chief magistrate: an intellect of the highest order; a perfect mastery of all the civil wisdom of the age; a penetrating, comprehensive, and sagacious judgment; great promptness and energy in action; patriotism which neither ingratitude, ill treatment nor rebellion could quench, or ever cool; a commanding and persuasive eloquence; a hearty love of truth; an incorruptible virtue; an entire freedom from selfish ambition; an invincible hatred of tyranny and injustice; a patient endurance of toil; a courageous contempt of danger; and a greatness of soul in which he has never been surpassed by the most admired heroes of ancient or modern times. Comprehensiveness, grasp, force, sagacity were the predominant characteristics of his mind; magnanimity, disinterestedness, an enthusiastic devotion to liberty, and an ardent but rational piety, the leading qualities of his heart.
“6. – As A General – Moses delivered his people from the most powerful nation on earth; maintained them amid the perils of the desert for forty years, and led them in confidence against a country settled by fierce tribes, which they conquered.
“7. – As A Lawgiver – However much may have been added by the development of the people, like the amendments to the Constitution and laws of the United States, yet through Moses was instituted the great system of civil and religious law. [In all of this he was about 3,500 years ahead of his time.]
“8. – As A Poet – The two songs in Deuteronomy 32 and 33, and Psalms 90.
“9. – As An Orator – The great orations in Deuteronomy stand among the few greatest masterpieces of eloquence in the world’s history, if not at their head.
“Close Of His Life – The song and the blessing of the tribes conclude the farewell, Deuteronomy 32 and 33. And then comes the mysterious close. He is told that he is to see the good land beyond the Jordan, but not to possess it himself. He ascends the mount of Pisgah and stands on Nebo, one of its summits, and surveys the four great masses of Palestine west of the Jordan, so far as it can be discerned from that height. The view has passed into a proverb for all nations. ‘So Moses the servant of Jehovah died there in the land of Moab, according to the word of Jehovah. And he buried him in a ravine in the land of Moab, before Beth–peor: but no man knoweth of his sepulcher unto this day... And the children of Israel wept for Moses in the plains of Moab thirty days.’ (Deut. 34: 5, 6, 8) This is all that is said in the sacred record.
“Moses is spoken of as a likeness of Christ; and as this is a point of view which has been almost lost in the Church, compared with the more familiar comparisons of Christ to Adam, David, Joshua, and yet has as firm a basis in fact as any of them, it may be well to draw it out in detail. (1) Moses is, as it would seem, the only character of the Old Testament to whom Christ expressly likens himself: ‘Moses wrote of me.’ (John 5:46) It suggests three main points of likeness: (a) Christ was, like Moses, the great prophet of the people – the last, as Moses was the first; (b) Christ, like Moses, is a lawgiver: ‘Him shall ye hear’; (c) Christ, like Moses, was a prophet out of the midst of the nation – ‘from their brethren.’ As Moses was the entire representative of his people, feeling for them more than for himself, absorbed in their interests, hope and fears, so, with reverence be it said, was Christ. (2) In Heb. 3:1-19; 12:24-29; Acts 7:37, Christ is described, though more obscurely, as the Moses of the new dispensation as the apostle or messenger or mediator of God to the people – as the controller and leader of the flock or household of God. (3) The details of their lives are sometimes, though not often, compared. (Acts 7:24-28, 35)”
Because we have quoted so copiously from these various writers does not mean we approve of everything they say, as we believe all of them are slightly “off base” in some of their statements. However, we think they are to be warmly commended for the lavish rhetoric they have given about Moses, along with the great store of information concerning him; and we hope our readers will receive great blessing from what we have given. Moses is one of the outstanding characters of all history, and we rejoice with him in the great victory of faith that was his. He undoubtedly believed his own writings: “The eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms.” (Deut. 33:27) The Jews have a saying that God kissed him there that last night before he died. “Moses was an hundred and twenty years old when he died: his eye was not dim, nor his natural forces abated.” (Deut. 34:7)
“But the salvation of the righteous is of the Lord: he is their strength in the time of trouble. And the Lord shall help them, and deliver them: he shall deliver them from the wicked, and save them, because they trust in him.” (Psa. 37:39, 40)
Sincerely your brother, John J. Hoefle, Pilgrim
(Reprint No. 267, September 1977)
CHRISTIAN LEADER PROMOTES FILM TOUTING ZIONIST IDEALS
The film shows a picture of Pastor Kenneth Rawson meeting with former Soviet refusenik, Yosef Begun. A point by Dr. Dana of the Israeli Ministry of Religion, who is a specialist on Christian groups, observed that the two points which put Bible Students outside the pale of Christian churches are the very points that so highly commend Bible Students to Jewish people. (1) Bible Students reject the Christian dogma of the trinity (three Gods in one) and believe in the sh’ma. (2) Bible Students have an historic position as pro-Zionist, non-proselytizing friends of the Jewish people.
There are over forty Messianic Jesus synagogues in Israel. Dr. Dana expressed deep appreciation for Pastor Rawson’s work, of telling the Jewish people not to convert to Christian denominations, not to assimilate, but to cherish the Torah and their Jewish heritage and support Zionism. He said the Ministry of Religion would cooperate in every way to make the Hebrew version of “ISRAEL: APPOINTMENT WITH DESTINY” a success in Israel. (The Jewish Star, February 23, 1990)
Notice: It has been reported that Brother Rawson’s hour-long historic multi-image stereo-production was received well with much enthusiasm both in Israel and in the United States.
LETTERS OF GENERAL INTEREST
Dear Emily: Greetings in the Name of Christ!
Yes, I know it’s been a long time. No! I haven’t been ignoring you. It’s Just that I have been preoccupied running around getting myself together and haven’t had time to sit down and write you or anyone else for that matter.
I am in the process of moving. I’m living with my brother but won’t be able to move into my new place until next week some time...
Other than that everything else is going fine as much as this dying world will allow... I’ve been reading “The Time is at Hand,” and I really don’t see what all the commotion is about. I guess it’s the way one interprets it – just as the Bible. These groups split up and start their own groups. It seems that the Bible Student groups are like Christendom. They all believe the basics yet are divided among themselves... I see you have your hands full with ex–JWs, huh? I believe they are just lost souls, and not interested in finding the truth... Some of the JWs who leave seem to be interested in one thing – revenge! They reason, “I spent years in that organization, how can I make some money off of it?” So, off they go to a publisher: “I Was a JW,” “30 Years a Slave of the Watchtower,” “From Kingdom Hall to Kingdom Come,” etc., etc. As you say, the leaders of the JWs teach ‘some’ truth, yet when these people leave they not only discard their errors, but the basic truths they teach, and end up worse than they were before they left.
But enough about the JWs. As you say, “Those who are of the truth will search and will find it.”
I just wanted to let you know that I’m still alive and well and thinking of you. When I get some free time I’ll sit down and write you a nice lengthy letter, one I think you’ll enjoy and find interesting. Take care and Keep the Faith!
With Christian love, Your brother in Christ, ------- (NEW YORK)
Dear Mrs. Hoefle:
Thank you for your letter and the accompanying information... I attend the local community college, working toward my degree in science (so far with an “A” average) and work a full-time job, as well as maintaining a marriage. So sometimes I get a little behind with reference to time.
Yes, I would like to be put on your mailing list. I am also interested in the books that are available through you. As to your question concerning how I got your name, I have been aware for many years of your movement. I first came across it, I believe, in Melton’s ENCYCLOPEDIA OF AMERICAN RELIGIONS. I got your address, however, from the Saviour of All Fellowship, April 1989 newsletter, which was as usual examining the beliefs of various groups.
As to my religious background, let me begin by stating that in my younger days I attended a Baptist church. This was due to the fact that my parents were Baptists (though not very strict). My early upbringing, however, was not limited to Baptist doctrine. I have an aunt in Montana who is a Jehovah’s Witness and, consequently, I have read much of their literature. I even have a copy of the NEW WORLD TRANSLATION OF THE HOLY SCRIPTURES, and a copy as well of the “Christian Greek Scriptures.”
Another relative was into the Worldwide Church of God. I have many copies of THE PLAIN TRUTH and other such literature made available to me. About thirteen years ago, just before I turned twenty, I encountered the Way International. Although I am no longer actively associated with this last group, I must say I learned much about the Scriptures, as well as something on how to study the Word of God. My really serious differences are more organizational then doctrinal in nature. This group, whose biggest crime seems to be an honest and Scriptural disagreement with orthodox, trinitarian churchianity. They have been accused of being many things that it simply is not. That, however, is another subject for another time.
Currently, I correspond with many Christian groups. I am always interested in improving my knowledge and understanding of God’s Word; that has always been a prime concern of mine. That is the basis for correspondence – to gain a better understanding of the Bible. Although I have a good many research books and copies of various translations and texts, I know that there are others who have studied the Scriptures longer than I have, and, therefore, have more knowledge and insights that I lack. This is why I have written you.
Thank you for reading this. May our Heavenly Father continue to bless you and your stand upon His Word.
Sincerely, ------- (VIRGINIA)
Dear Sister Emily,
Thank you very much for your publications. Please send your publications to my new address. If you would like a little help in the present most difficult times, this is possible in the small bank note enclosed in this letter.
Most sincerely, ------- (POLAND)