In our first installment of the above subject we completed discussion of “The World That Was”; and began discussion of “This Present Evil World” in its early years. We gave limited comment on the origin of various heathen religions – with Nimrod as the Sun God and Semiramus as the Moon Goddess. While much more could have been said about the heathen religions, we would merely state here that other prominent individuals were subsequently deified after their death, having their abode in the various stars, the same giving rise to Star Worship. although more could be written about this latter subject, we feel sufficient detail has been presented to give a lucid picture of the overall conditions that prevailed then. Thus, we now proceed with analysis of:
THE PATRIARCHAL AGE
It should be kept in mind that all the foregoing idolatry had a very small beginning, with a mere handful of people involved. However, at the fall of Jerusalem in the Fall of 607 B.C., when the Jews were carried captive into Babylon, the worship of deified mortals had engulfed almost the entire human race, except the Jews; and the instances given forgoing prove conclusively that it had also corrupted many of them.
But at no time in history was this scourge embraced by all men. We may reasonably conclude that it had not touched Noah, or his son Shem. A little further along, we come to Abraham, who appeared on the scene not quite 400 years after the flood; and he was 175 years old when he died. He is identified as the first of “the fathers”; and he, with his son Isaac and his grandson Jacob, cover the span of history known as the Patriarchal Age. At the death of Jacob (whose name had been changed to Israel—Gen. 32:28) his twelve sons became the heads of the twelve tribes of Israel, at which time began the Jewish Age, of which more later. In Eze. 10:10 there is discussion of “a wheel in the midst of a wheel,” and we believe this has reference to the various Ages – Patriarchal, Jewish and Gospel Ages – that appear in “this present evil world.” (Gal. 1:4)
It should be borne in mind that prior to the Exodus of the Jews from Egypt there had been no written revelation from God. The means of communication between God and man prior to the Exodus had been through angels talking to individuals, or through dreams or visions that were sent to them. As stated, in the narrow sense, the Patriarchal Age was the time of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob; but in the broad sense that Age began at the end of the flood, partly because at that time God made a special covenant with Noah and his descendants never again to destroy the earth (the social order—Gen. 9:11) with a flood. However, specifically speaking, the Patriarchal Age began with the Covenant made with Abraham. (Gen. 12:1-5) But because of the retroactive operation of the blessings of the Abrahamic Covenant, they were anticipatorially applied to Noah, and even to Enoch and Abel. (Heb. 11:4-7, 39,40) Because of this retroactive effect, we are somewhat warranted in beginning the Patriarchal Age with the end of the flood.
The word ‘patriarchs’ means ‘first fathers’; and it is because Noah, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob were the first fathers of Israel in this period, that we call it the Patriarchal Age. Apart from the covenant with Noah, God did not deal during this period on covenant basis with every human being. As explained forgoing, Nimrod and many others were permitted to “enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season,” God winking at their ignorance. (Acts 17:23,30; Rom. 1:21-25,28) Specifically, during that time He dealt with Abraham and his family, with Isaac and his family, and with Jacob and his family. During that Age God chose those with whom He would deal – just as He has been doing in this present Gospel Age – “Them who are the called according to His purpose.” (Rom. 8:28) The others of mankind He has allowed to go their own way – a law unto themselves; but this does not mean that the natural laws have not been operative toward those not called. Those who have sown to evil have often reaped the natural rewards of evil – “As a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” From this we must draw the logical conclusion that it has not been God’s will to save the world in the Patriarchal Age, the Jewish Age or the Gospel Age, or He would have done so – “My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure.” (Isa. 46:10)
Let us note that the Patriarchal Age endured for a period of 659 years – from the end of the flood to the death of Jacob, the last of the patriarchs. This conclusion is made because at the death of Jacob God ceased to deal exclusively with any one individual; but chose to deal with an entire nation – the twelve tribes of Israel. This is clearly stated in Gen. 49:28, where Jacob’s twelve sons and their families are for the first time called “the twelve tribes of Israel.” Thus it was that the Patriarchal Age ended and the Jewish Age began, after which time the Jews alone were dealt with on covenant basis. “Children of Israel, against the whole family which I brought up from the land of Egypt, saying, You only have I known of all the families of the earth.” (Amos 3:1,2)
THE JEWISH AGE
The Jewish Age began in the Spring of 1813 B.C., and continued thereafter for a period of 1845 years – until the death of Jesus, when He pronounced upon them the fateful sentence: “Your house is left unto you desolate... Ye shall not see Me henceforth till ye shall say, Blessed is He that cometh in the name of the Lord.” (Matt. 23:38,39) During this 1845 years God made no effort to convert the Gentile world; but His dealings during the Jewish Age were much the same as they had been during the Patriarchal Age – of an elective character. Many times during the 1845 years did the Jews forsake the true God, followed the idolatrous practices of the heathens, and often committed acts of extreme depravity. Yet they continued “beloved for the fathers’ sakes.” (Rom. 11:28) In other words, they often rode on the coattails of the patriarchs.
It is well to consider here that all during the Patriarchal Age, and for about 200 years of the Jewish Age there was no organized religious ritual, no written revelation from God. This came for the first time through Moses at Sinai, during which time most of the Pentateuch was recorded, and making the foundation for “the oracles of God” which continued to come through that nation until the prophecy of Malachi appeared to form the last book of the Old Testament. Prior to Sinai whatever of religion was practiced by the Jews was based largely upon tradition, with either the father or the eldest son of the family acting as the household priest, which readily reminds us of the great influence for good or evil that could come from such an arrangement. But this was all changed when Aaron, brother of Moses, was selected by God as Israel’s first High Priest; and the ceremonies incidental to the Tabernacle were initiated. After that time additional revelations came through the various prophets, which were written out, eventually producing the 39 books of the Old Testament, with Malachi being the last one.
Of course, we must bear in mind that the revelations contained in the book of Genesis are all recordings of past events, many of which had occurred in “the world that was”; with the remainder coming during the Patriarchal and Jewish Ages prior to Sinai. It was Moses who reduced them to writing. Some of the Old Testament revelations came by direct speech (through an angel from God, etc.), others by visions, tableaux and dreams, some by immediate inspiration, some by typical acts and institutions, and some by covenant arrangements. Putting these into writing was commenced by Moses at Sinai in 1615 B.C., and completed by Malachi about 400 B.C. John the Baptist was the last of the prophets (Matt. 11:13), although he did not contribute any Old Testament writings.
Large parts of the Old Testament were typical of future events, many of which have already been fulfilled, with some being fulfilled in our present time, and others still future. Outstanding among such is the Law Covenant given through Moses, which offers great enlightenment concerning the New Covenant that will soon be inaugurated. “I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah; not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them forth out of the land of Egypt.” (Jer. 31:31-32)
The books written by Moses – Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and most of Deuteronomy – were committed to the care of the Jewish priesthood; as were also subsequent additions until the last by Malachi. Such reverence was attached to those writings that the priests in charge would have given their lives in defense of them. Parts of these writings were usually read in the synagogues on the Sabbath, or other special occasions; and Jesus often quoted or read parts of certain Old Testament writings. One notable instance is recorded in Luke 4:16-21. It should be stressed here also that all of the Old Testament writers were Jews – as were also all of the New Testament writers, if we make allowance that the Gospel of Luke was dictated by St. Paul. And because of all this St. Paul asks the question: “What advantage then hath the Jew?... Much every way; chiefly, because that unto them were committed the oracles of God.” (Rom. 3:1,2)
However, there were many times when the custodians of the Holy Writ became quite careless in their duty, putting the writings off in some obscure corner of the Temple until they were forgotten and barely being preserved at all. Such an instance is recorded in 2 Chron. 34:14-33. Indeed, after the death of Joshua such carelessness was often manifest until their return from the 70-years, captivity in Babylon – after which they were closely regarded and respected.
As stated earlier, the fact was stressed that only two of the cardinal doctrines of the Bible were revealed in “the world that was,” these two being the Creation and the Fall of man. The third one to come into prominence was the Law given at Sinai, which would give the Jews life if they would keep that Law. And to this they all answered, “All the words which the Lord hath said will we do.” (Ex. 24:3) But that Law only made glaringly apparent their inability to live according to the perfect requirements of their God. St. Paul makes this quite clear in Rom. 7:7-9: “I had not known sin but by the law... I was alive without the law once; but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died.”
And, while the Old Testament Scriptures did testify of Jesus (John 5:39), much of what they testified was very vaguely comprehended; and it was not until Jesus Himself “brought life and immortality to light through the Gospel” (2 Tim. 1:10) that the remaining seven cardinal doctrines became clearly understood. Those seven are the Ransom, Justification, Sanctification, the High Calling, the Resurrection, Restitution and the Second Death. Six of these seven have been rather well understood by a limited few, and all have been operative during this Gospel Age, Restitution being the only exception. Of this we shall offer some comment when we consider “the world to come.”
Jesus not only “brought life and immortality to light through the Gospel,” but He also proved his own human perfection by keeping that Law perfectly, which even the best of the Jews Moses, Daniel, Samuel, John the Baptist, and the other well-intentioned prophets had not been able to do. Jesus emphasized this point in Matt. 5:17, 18: “Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.”
And, while the best of the Jews – such as mentioned above – could not keep the Law, it did accomplish something for them, as they endeavored to keep it. It gave them a standing far superior to their fellows, and developed in them the good qualities which will give them “a better resurrection” (Heb. 11:35) when “the books are opened, and the judgment is set.” This is recorded in quite some detail by St. Paul in the eleventh chapter of Hebrews.
Also, in lesser degree, a small segment of the Jews made earnest effort to keep the Law. St. Paul was one of these, he says of himself, “Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law, a Pharisee (who rigidly attempted to keep the law, many of them mistakenly believing that they did so)... touching the righteousness which is of the law, blameless.” (Phil. 3:5,6) Jesus attracted to Himself a small number of such Jews – by His own personal magnetism and His strict adherence to that law which they had come to love. Jesus spoke of such as “the Harvest” of the Jewish Age; and counseled the Apostles and others to join Him in reaping them. “Look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest... I sent you to reap that whereon you bestowed no labor: other men labored, and ye are entered into their labors.” (John 4:35-38)
Although the law and the Jewish Age did produce a “harvest” of “Israelites indeed,” it also produced the chaff: “He will gather the wheat into His garner; but the chaff He will burn with fire unquenchable.” (Luke 3:17) although their house was left to them desolate at Jesus’ death, they were given an additional 36½ years of amnesty before they were required to meet their promise: “His blood be on us, and on our children.” (Matt. 27:25) In the year 70 A.D. the Roman Emperor Titus leveled Jerusalem after a long and vicious siege, at which time “the chaff” was destroyed in savage manner. When the work was fully accomplished, there was a circle of crosses around Jerusalem, with a dead Jew hanging on each one of them. It is one of the outstanding atrocities of all history. There ended the Jewish Age; there ended the Jewish rituals established by Moses and Aaron at Sinai; there began what is commonly known as “the dispersion,” which is the foundation for the expression “The Wandering Jew.”
So thoroughly was the chaff burned at that time that the Temple was demolished and the Tribe of Levi became lost in the confusion. That loss did indeed “desolate” the Jewish religion because they can no longer have a High Priest – who must come from the Tribe of Levi; but they do not now know which Jews are of that tribe. Therefore, their present Atonement Day services, their Passover services, etc., are mere empty formalisms. When the Jewish Age ended, it ended in a way which none of them foresaw, the full import of which is today understood by only a very few in Christendom. Vicious persecution has followed them from city to city, from nation to nation; and it may truly be described as one of the outstanding marvels of the Age that the Jewish race still exists at all. Their tenacity in this matter offers living proof of Moses’ charge against them: “Thou art a stiffnecked (stubborn) people.” (Deu. 9:6)
As amelioration to the foregoing, we offer the conclusion that it will not be always so with them. Already we see them back in the land which God promised the “fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.” (Deu. 9:5); and we offer also the consolation of St. Paul: “Blindness is happened in part (not an unending scourge) to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles be come in.” (Rom. 11:25)
An item of special interest here is that all the four universal empires described in the metal-man image of Dan. 2:36-45 had their origin in universal reign during the Jewish Age. The first of these was Babylon, which conquered the Jerusalem Jews in the Fall of 607 B.C.; and the Prophet describes it in this manner: ‘‘Thou, 0 king (Nebuchadnezzar) art a king of kings: for the God of heaven hath given thee a kingdom, power, and strength, and glory. And wheresoever the children of men dwell, the beasts of the fields and the fowls of the heaven hath He given into thine hand, and hath made thee ruler over them all. Thou art this head of gold.” (Dan. 2:37,38)
Followed then the Medes and the Persians as earth’s universal sovereignty. Media is first mentioned in history about 850 B.C., but did not attain noticeable prominence until about 625 B.C., at which time Cyaxares united the many Iranian-speaking Median tribes. The Medes became subject to the Persians in 550 B.C., under Cyrus the Great. “After thee shall arise another kingdom inferior to thee.” (Dan. 2:39)
Came next the Grecian Empire (“another third kingdom, which shall bear rule over all the earth”—Dan. 2:39). Alexander the Great occupied Media in 330 B.C.; but his rule was short-lived; and the empire fell pretty much apart shortly after his death.
“The fourth kingdom shall be strong as iron” (Dan. 2:40). The reference is to the “iron rule” of Rome – the fourth and most extensive of the universal dominions. It had a very small beginning in the 8th century B.C. on the Tiber River in Italy; and lasted until the fifth century A.D. It became mistress of all Italy about the beginning of the third century B.C. During the years 264-133 B.C. it crushed its chief rival Carthage, and subjugated Macedonia, Greece and Spain. In 30 B.C. Octavian (Julius Caesar’s adopted son) defeated Mark Anthony at Actium – at which date the Roman Empire was founded. Octavian, more popularly known as Augustus Caesar, reigned from 27 B.C. to 14 A.D. It was during his reign that Jesus was born. The empire reached about its greatest extent under Trajan, who reigned from 98 to 117 A.D.
From the dates given forgoing, it is evident that all four of the universal empires came to the pinnacle of their glory in the Jewish Age; and three of them began their decline in the Jewish Age. The first – the Babylonian kingdom of Nebuchadnezzar – experienced complete desolation before the Jewish Age ended. “Because of the wrath of the Lord, Babylon shall not be inhabited, but it shall be wholly desolate: every one that goeth by Babylon shall be astonished...” (Jer. 50:13). The only one of the four that did not begin its decline in the Jewish Age was the Roman Empire.
And in closing this dissertation on the Jewish Age we offer this interesting incident: Some years ago we were rather well acquainted with a Jewish magistrate who was quite well versed in Jewish customs, history and religious ritual. On a certain occasion he was invited to address a Christian Sunday School Class, at which time he said something like this: “When I was invited to address you I was somewhat jittery and reluctant to appear before such an august assembly of Christians; but, when I began to recall that my ancestors were kings and priests, and worshipers of the one true God for about four thousand years, while your ancestors were worshipers of idols some having descended from Nimrod and Semiramus – I decided I had no cause for apology; and I began to view this situation with a courage I did not at first possess. Since the Mosaic Law Covenant given to Israel through Moses, the Jews have been the only nation in covenant relationship with the true God; all the surrounding nations were Gentiles who worshipped idols, and indulged in heathen rituals. Therefore, I concluded that any Jew who tries to be faithful to the Law Covenant which was given at Mount Sinai has reason to be proud of his historical background; and I certainly make no apology for mine.”
THE GOSPEL AGE
The Gospel or Christian Age is the last “wheel within the wheel” of “this present evil world” – the third and most important of the Ages that comprise it. The word gospel means good news or glad tidings; and it is stated in Matt. 4:23, and in other Scriptures, that “Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel (glad tidings) of the kingdom.” While it is true that there were more or less of good tidings in the two previous Ages, it is preeminently true of the Gospel Age. In the first seventy years of this Christian Age the entire New Testament was written – in contrast to the many hundreds of years (more than a thousand years) which were required to produce the Old Testament. While Jesus began this Gospel Age at Jordan in the strict sense, yet in its broader sense it did not begin until Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit was then poured out on those 500 people who were waiting in the upper room, as Jesus had told them to do. (Acts 1:13) 2:1-4; 1 Cor. 15:6). This occurred in 33 A.D., and overlapped the Jewish Age until Jerusalem was taken by Titus in the year 70 A.D. And in this our day overlappings of the Gospel Age into the Millennial Age have been occurring since 1874 – just 1845 years after those that occurred at the beginning of this Age. From this standpoint the duration of the Gospel Age may be definitely stated as 1845 years, with lappings into the Millennial Age – just as was true at the end of the Jewish Age and the beginning of the Gospel Age.
As previously stated, the Patriarchal and the Jewish Ages had their own distinctive purposes; and the same may be said of the Christian Age. Also, the Jewish and Gospel Ages are of equal length (1845 years); thus, they are parallel dispensations, with the Jewish Age providing many events that were typical of things in this Age – some of them exactly 1845 years apart. The first purpose of this Age is very similar to the first purpose of the Jewish Age. To the Jews were committed “the oracles of God”; and in this Age the Christians have been made the custodian of God’s oracles. (1 Cor. 4:1,2; John 17:8, 14; 2 Tim. 3:15-17; 2 Pet. 3:16) Christians have not only closely guarded the contents of the Old and New Testaments, but they have also translated them into many different languages. So well have the Christians cared for these Scriptures that not one book, or an essential part of any one book, has been lost.
The second purpose of this Age relates very closely to the first one – giving additional revelations to those contained in the Old Testament. This was begun by John the Baptist, was given very great impetus by the preaching of Jesus, and completed by the Apostles – resulting in 27 additional books being added to the Bible in what is commonly styled the New Testament. The revelation of these 27 books came through various means: by direct speech, by visions, tableaux and dreams, some by immediate inspiration, symbolic acts, etc. These things occurred at different times, places and circumstances, the last being The Apocalypse, or Revelation, presumably written by St. John about 100 A.D. while a prisoner on the Isle of Patmos. (Rev. 1:9) The central feature of the New Testament is Christ and His Church, but containing much prophecy of future events, clarifications and elaborations of Old Testament Scriptures, with a complete code of ethics for the Christian life, detailed information on the resurrection of the dead, as well as considerable enlightenment on “the angels that sinned.”
The third purpose of the Christian Age was to introduce the Ransom – “a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.” (I Tim. 2:6) The word ransom in this text is from the Greek antilutron, and means a corresponding price, an exact equivalent. The Jewish Age had produced the Mosaic Law, which made glaringly manifest that man could not save himself. The word Jesus means savior; and the angel that appeared to Joseph had told him, “Thou shalt call his name Jesus, for he shall save his people from their sins.” (Matt. 1:21) This testimony was heralded primarily by Jesus; then by the Apostles and other capable men of their time; and since their time by other able men all during the Age, so that it is now more or less common knowledge, although in a more or less confused and uncertain manner by the vast majority.
The declaration of this knowledge had as its foundation the “gospel of the Kingdom,” the same kingdom for which Jesus told all to pray, “Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven.” Along with this message His followers have “reproved the world for sin, for righteousness, and judgment to come” (John 16:8-11) “preached in His name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem” (Luke 24:47), thence to Judea and Samaria, unto the ends of the earth. The evidence is quite clear that this has been accomplished; and that the failure of the Law to save mankind establishes the foundation for hope of salvation through Jesus. “What the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh... condemned sin in the flesh; That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us (the Apostles and those who accepted their teachings after them), who walk not after the flesh, but after the spirit.” (Rom. 8:3,4) This “righteousness” has been imputed to all believers who had a true faith in Jesus as Savior. This “justification by faith” has given believers all during this Age “peace with God” (Rom.5:1,2).
The acquisition of faith justification has been by call; not by command – “the called according to His purpose.” (Rom. 8:28) And those who continued faithful in this justification were accepted into God’s family as sons, “joint heirs with Christ” to administer the future kingdom on earth “in due time.” However, Jesus said this group would be very few in number – “Many are called, but few are chosen.” Much emphasis should be placed upon the fact that one of the purposes of this Christian Age has been to call certain ones to do certain things, for which they would then be justified in anticipating certain rewards for the faithful doing of those things. A few hundred years back it was the general belief in Christendom that those who did not respond to the call would spend eternity in torment in the lake of fire. But it must be conceded that even in Christendom many had not had opportunity to hear that call; and of those who did hear it, the great majority had a very nebulous idea of its real meaning. Then we add to that the vast heathen world, the majority of whom never had the opportunity even to hear it at all. On one occasion the Apostle Peter had told the Jewish rulers that “there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved except the name of Jesus Christ” (Acts 4:10-12). Thus billions of heathen who had never heard that name would be consigned to eternal torment – according to the prevalent belief in Christendom in the Dark Ages.
“Let all those that seek thee rejoice and be glad in thee: and let such as love thy salvation say continually, Let God be magnified.” (Psa. 70:4)
Sincerely your brother, John J. Hoefle, Pilgrim
(Reprint No. 245, November 1975
LETTERS OF GENERAL INTEREST
Greetings! I am writing to request any information such as pamphlets, brochures and books that state your beliefs of your religion. Any information received will be very helpful to enable me to gain knowledge in knowing about your beliefs. I would certainly greatly appreciate any help you could give me in finding more about your religion.
Thank you. ------- (NORTH DAKOTA)
TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN:
I am writing you in hopes that I might get some information about your organization. If you can, please send me any materials which you think might best help me. If you could, I would appreciate a list of material which I might purchase should I desire to learn more.
I thank you in advance for your quick response to my inquiry, as it is an important issue for me as it should be for most people who are concerned about their spiritual well‑being.
Thank you, ------- (CANADA)
I have just received your January‑February issue. Please send me any current issues you may have and do keep me on your list.
Your news articles are very interesting. In fact, I was unaware of your publication until now. I, too, feel there is great need to watch current events, especially those which may have some effect on our understanding of endtime prophecy, I edit a work somewhat similar to yours which we have named "Watch and Pray."
Again thank you for the subscription. In His service, ------- (TENNESSEE)
I am interested in any of the following:
1) Original editions or reprints of works of Charles Taze Russell, including, but not limited to the 'Studies in the Bible series,' also known under the name 'Millennial Dawn.'
2) Original editions or reprints of the WATCHTOWER magazine including, but not limited to the years 1880‑1920.
3) Any other publications, magazines or books, past or present pertaining to the movements started by C. T. Russell.
Please let me know the availability and cost of the above items. I appreciate your help and am looking forward to hearing from you. ……. (CALIFORNIA)
Epiphany Bible Student Association:
Thank you for your letter. I would like to be added to your mailing list. Also, a couple of questions: First, do you have the volumes of the Epiphany Studies in the Scriptures? If so, at what price?
About the book "About Charles Taze Russell," by David Horowitz? Do you stock it? What is the price?
Thank you, ------- (MARYLAND)
Dear Brethren: Grace and peace!
We enjoyed the letter published in the April 1989 paper about the experience someone had with Jehovah's Witnesses. We had a similar experience with some Witnesses recently.
Our house has self‑evidently been marked by the JWs, as none of them have called on us for some time. However, last Saturday morning some one knocked on our door. My husband said it must be Jehovah's Witnesses, as they knock doors and do not ring door bells. When we went to the door there were two high school‑aged girls who wanted to sell us a booklet for 30¢. My husband told them we would be happy to buy their booklet if they would accept one of our articles for free and promise to read it.
They said they could not read anything that did not have Scriptural references and showed us their booklet that had such references. We then showed them our paper that had Scriptural references also. One of the young ladies said she would have to contact someone with "more experience" to see whether they were allowed to accept our paper. But the other girl didn't want to leave.
Hoping to be able to witness Truth to them, we told them we agreed with the JWs on the state of the dead, the wages of sin is death and the trinity" Also, that we believed in searching the Scriptures, and in Jehovah and His Son, Jesus Christ. One of them then asked if we were Jehovah's Witnesses. When we told her we were not as we could not accept quite a few things the Witnesses teach, she became very nervous and wanted to leave. The other Witness seemed interested in what we were saying, so I asked her for her name and address. The nervous one told her not to do that. So I gave her our name, address and phone number, and asked her to call us.
It is doubtful that we will hear from her once this is related to the "more experienced." It is apparent that these two young ladies had been instructed exactly as what to say – and any deviation from that made them unsettled and nervous.
The JWs send these young people out to "witness" and they do not know what they are supposed to believe, nor what they themselves believe. They think they are "working their way into the Kingdom," even though they don't know anything about God's great Plan of Salvation for all mankind – not just a Salvation for Jehovah's Witnesses. We are reminded of Job 38:2: "Who is this that darkeneth counsel by words without knowledge?"
The JWs boast that Pastor Russell is their founder, but he isn't the founder of Jehovah's Witnesses and their errors but only the founder of their organization. Pastor Russell instructed all his colporteurs and others who distributed his literature, that they should read and understand anything they offered others. We should be in harmony with St. Peter's instruction in 1 Peter 3:15: "And be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear."
Even the "more experienced" Witnesses when faced with those who have the Truth, turn away before hearing the reason of the hope that is within them. It is evident that the Witnesses do not have the "truth that makes you free," as the doctrines they teach are "errors that bind and imprison them."
Our Lord tells us: "If you continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; and ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." (John 8:31,32)
God bless and guide you as you seek to serve Him in sincerity and in Truth.
Warm Christian love, ------- (FLORIDA)
Thank you so very much for your letters and information that you have sent to me. It is a big help! Thank you for the two books, PASTOR CHARLES TAZE RUSSELL, An Early American Christian Zionist. I do have someone to give the second book to who will appreciate it.
I don't have any questions right now. I just want to take my time and study the information that you have sent me. I just wanted to let you know that I have received everything, and to say
Thank You. Sincerely, ------- (OHIO) [An ex‑JW]