by Epiphany Bible Students

No. 357

HAGGAI – The name means “festal”; and it could mean that the prophet was born on one of the Jewish religious holidays. Reliable authorities report that his book was written in 520 B. C.; and one of them reports that Haggai probably saw the glorious Temple of Solomon, because he contrasts that beauty with the shoddy structure that the Jews were then attempting to erect. However, 520 B. C. was 86 years after Solomon’s Temple had been destroyed by the Babylonian army when the Tribes of Judah and Benjamin – the last of the twelve tribes to leave Palestine – were carried away captive into Babylon. If this one commentator is correct, then Haggai would have been well over one hundred years old, so the observation is probably not correct. Some of his older ancestors may have given him a very good description of Solomon’s fine Temple.

Haggai was contemporary with Zechariah, the latter being the much younger of the two. It was a critical period of history ‑ both of the Jewish nation and the world at large. By the taking of Babylon by Cyrus the Great, with the consequent development of the second universal empire (the arms and chest of silver of Daniel’s metal man – Dan. 2:32), a new era in the secular history of the world was inaugurated. When Alexander the Great eventually conquered the Medo‑Persian empire, he found they had developed the hanging gardens – one of the seven great wonders of the ancient world. When Cyrus permitted the Jews to return to Palestine, from that time we have reasonable reliable history of events – 606 BC.

As one commentator has put it: “We then passed from the shadowy region of primeval history to the middle period of authentic classical history, which intervenes between those earliest times and the ‘modern history’ of the world. And with the taking of Babylon by Cyrus Jewish history also entered upon a new epoch. The overthrow of Jerusalem by Nebuchnezzar, with which the previous, and as it might well have seemed, the final stage of that history had closed, proceeded only by a few years the capture of Babylon. The Jewish exiles were still in Babylon (as the Prophet Jeremiah has instructed them to do – JJH) when Cyrus entered it. It was his conquest of the city that was the immediate cause of their return to their own country and of the rebuilding of their city and their temple.

“These last events were fraught with far weightier consequences to the world at large, than the taking of Babylon, or that any transaction or advance, however great, in its merely secular history could produce. They led the way to the fulfillment of the promise in which the hope of the human race was bound up. They were a necessary step to the coming of Christ and to the introduction of Christianity, with the inestimable benefits which it has conferred upon mankind. If Jerusalem had not been rebuilt and the apparently defunct national countenance of its people revived, as by a resurrection from the dead, then, humanly speaking, Christ could not have been born and died. The history of the world, the rise and fall of vast empires and mighty dynasties, waits upon and subserves the history of the sons of Abraham, because in the purpose of God, in the seed of Abraham all the families of the earth are to be blessed.

“To this critical and important period the two prophets undoubtedly belong. The Book of Ezra, which contains the history of the return from Babylon, and of the events which followed immediately upon it, mentions both of them by name, and describes the effect upon the people of their prophecies, of which the written records are preserved to us in these books.

“Scarcely had Cyrus added the Babylonian Empire to his dominions, and so gained for himself authority alike over the Jewish exiles in Babylon and over Palestine their country, when he issued an edict for their return. This to the Jews was no unexpected event. Not only had their captivity and the length of its duration been foretold by the voice of prophecy (2 Chron. 36:21), but Cyrus had been spoken of by name as their deliverer. (Isa. 44:28) The remarkable circumstances which have been commonly supposed to have attended his capture of Babylon – the stratagems by which the water was diverted, first in the Gyndes, and then in the Euphrates, the hundred gates all of bronze along the vast circuit of the walls, the folding doors, the two‑leaved gates, which so carefully guarded the approaches of the Euphrates, opened as by magic for the conquerors; must, it would seem, have belonged, not to the reign of Cyrus, but to that of Darius Hystaspes. We have the express testimony of Cyrus himself that the city opened its gates to his general without fighting or battle. But the capture itself and the safe conduct of the returning exiles through the vast desert that lay between Chaldea and Palestine, as by a causeway thrown up for a royal progress or the advance of a victorious army, had been announced beforehand. And now the event itself was to fulfill these prophecies and satisfy the expectations based upon them. The time to favor Zion was come, and He in whose hand is the king’s heart to turn it whithereoever He will, as the streams of water are guided by the cultivator into the channels which he has prepared for the irrigation of his land, stirred up the spirit of Cyrus to perform His will.

“The edict by which Cyrus invited the captives to return, and which he both proclaimed by heralds throughout all his kingdom and published as a written document, is preserved at the close of the second book of Chronicles and repeated in a fuller form in the opening verses of the Book of Ezra.

“Jehovah the God of heaven,’ so it ran, ‘hast given me all the kingdoms of the earth; and He hath charged me to build Him an house in Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Whosoever there is among you of all His people, his God be with him, and let him go up to Jerusalem, which is in Judah, and build the house of Jehovah the God of Israel (He is the God), which is in Jerusalem. And whosoever remaineth, in any place where he sojourneth, let the men of his place help him with silver, and with gold, and with goods, and with beasts, beside the freewill offering for the house of God that is in Jerusalem.’

“By what channel this ‘charge’ reached Cyrus we are not now concerned to inquire. It may have been, that his attention had been directed by Daniel to the prophecy of Isaiah (about two hundred years before Cyrus became king), which pointed him out by name as the restorer of Israel. It has been thought that the monotheism of his own Persian religion would dispose him to regard with favor and sympathy a people, whose pure monotheistic creed was in this respect so nearly akin to his own. But our present knowledge derived from the recently discovered tablet and cylinder inscription, renders this view no longer tenable. It appears now to be certain that Cyrus was on his own testimony, an Elamite, rather than a Persian, and, as we should therefore expect, a polytheist.

“His conduct towards the Jews was in accordance with the general policy, the reverse of that of his Babylonian and Assyrian predecessors, which he appears to have adopted toward conquered nations. Instead of removing them from their own lands, and supplying their places by alien peoples (as had been done in the case of the ten tribes by the kings of Assyria), and thus creating centers of sedition and dissatisfaction throughout his dominions, he sought to secure their good will and allegiance, by restoring them to their respective countries and to the free practice of their several religions. With heathen nations he sent back the images of their gods. To the Jews, who had learned by severe discipline of their captivity to abhor idols, he restored their sacred vessels, which Nebuchadnezzar had carried away from Jerusalem and placed in the house of Merodach his god, and contributed to the rebuilding of their temple and the worship of Jehovah, the God of heaven.

“The response on the part of the Jews in Babylon to the invitation thus addressed to them, was far less general than as has sometimes been supposed. The earnest supplication of Daniel for the holy mountain of his God, the mournful plaint of the Psalmist, as he sat down by the waters of Babylon and wept when he remembered Zion, have not unnaturally perhaps been taken to represent the spirit and feeling of the people at large, during the seventy years captivity. Yet the facts of the return clearly show, that it was only in ‘the remnant’ that the pure spirit of religion and patriotism was in reality maintained. The most part appear, as now, to have been taken up with their material prosperity, and at best, to have become inured to the cessation of their symbolical worship, connected as it was with the declaration of the forgiveness of their sins. Those who thought more of temporal prosperity than of their high spiritual nobility and destination, had flourished doubtless in that exile an they have in their present (written before World War One – JJH) homelessness, as wanderers among the nations. Haman calculated apparently on being able to pay out of their spoils ten thousand talents of silver – some three hundred million pounds of the annual revenue of the Persian Empire, into the king’s treasuries.

“Those who returned are described as ‘the chief” of the fathers of Judah and Benjamin, and the priests and the Levites, with all whose spirit God raised (or stirred up). But the expression, the priests and the Levites, is evidently used quite generally, and must not be understood to imply that the whole, or even the greater part of those ecclesiastical orders went back. Though the proportion of priests in the caravan was large, yet of the twenty‑four sacerdotal courses only four were stated to have returned. Of the Levites there were only seventy‑four individuals together with 128 singers of the family of Asaph and 139 gate‑keepers. Their helpers, given to them for the menial work of the Sanctuary, the Nethinim and the children of Solomon’s servants numbered 392. The whole company that returned with Zerubbabel consisted of 42,360 free men, or some 200,000 free persons (men, women and children), together with 7,337 male and female slaves, of whom 200 were ‘singing men and women.’

“But small as was the returning band compared with the whole number of captives, a mere ‘remnant,’ as their prophets had foretold, in comparison of the nation in its palmy days, when Israel and Judah were as the sand upon the seashore for multitude, the spirit by which they were animated appears to have been that of high devotion to their country, their religion and their God. The Joyousness of their return has thus been strikingly depicted.

“‘And when the day at last arrived which was to see their expectations fulfilled, the burst of Joy was such as has no parallel in the sacred volume: it is indeed the revival, the Second Birth, the second Exodus of the nation.’ There was now ‘a new song,’ of which the burden was that the Eternal reigned again over the earth, and that the gigantic idolatries which surrounded them had received a deadly shock: that the waters of oppression had rolled back, in which they had been struggling like drowning men; that the snare was broken, in which they had been entangled like a caged bird. It was like a dream, too good to be true. The gaiety, the laughter of their poetry, resounded far and wide. The surrounding nations could not but confess what great things had been done for them. It was like the sudden rush of the waters into the dry torrent beds of the south of Palestine, or of the yet extreme south, of which they may have heard, in far Ethiopia. It was like the reaper bearing on his shoulder the golden sheaves in summer which he had sown amongst the tears of winter.

“So full were their hearts, that all nature was called to Join in their thankfulness. The vast rivers of their new Mesopotamian home, and the waves of the Indian Ocean, are to take part in the chorus, and clap their foaming crests like living hands. The mountains of their own native land are invited to express their Joy: each tree in the forests that clothed the hills, or that cast their shade over the field, is to have a tongue for the occasion.

“That this high ideal was realized by the whole returning company we need not suppose. That tears of penitence and words of prayer mingled with their strains of Joy we must not forget. ‘They shall come with weeping,’ with tears of chastened grateful joy, ‘and with supplications will I lead them’ God had said by the prophet Jeremiah. (Jer. 31:9) So again the same prophet pictures their return: ‘In those days and at that time, saith the Lord, the Children of Israel shall come, they and the children of Judah together, going and weeping: They shall go and seek the Lord their God. They shall ask the way to Zion with their faces thitherward.’ (Jer. 50:4, 5) But the jubilant return was still the ideal with which the Spirit of God in Prophet and in Psalmist had furnished them; and, if it awaited its full realization in a yet brighter and more distant future, it was the ideal to which some, we may well believe, of those ‘whose spirit God had raised,’ even then in measure attained, and to which as a body they aspired. The joy of the Lord was their strength. In that strength they faced and overcame the difficulties and dangers of the intervening desert, ‘a hard gravel plain, from the moment they left the banks of the Euphrates till they reached the northern extremity of Syria; with no solace except the occasional wells and walled stations; or, if their passage was in the spring, the natural herbage and flowers which clothed the arid soil. Ferocious hordes of Bedouin robbers then, as now, swept the whole land.’ A journey of nearly four months, though now it is usually accomplished in about two, would bring them to their destination, ‘their small central strip of the country round Jerusalem, occupied by the tribes of Judah and Benjamin,’ to which the larger part of the exiled belonged.

“True to the object to which they had been invited to return, the restored exiles set themselves at once to rebuild the temple and establish the worship of Jehovah. For this Cyrus supplied the means and furnished ample directions. For this some of the chief of the Fathers on their arrival at Jerusalem offered freely. Their first step was to reconstruct the altar on its ancient foundation, the sacrifice, the great central rite of their religion, the necessary condition of access to the Holy One, might immediately be resumed. The altar was completed and dedicated, on the first day of the seventh month of the same year in which they left Babylon. On the fifteenth day of that month the feast of Tabernacles was duly kept, and the people, we read, gathered themselves together as one man to Jerusalem.

“Henceforward the daily sacrifice and the stated festivals according to the law of Moses were observed. Negotiations were entered into without delay with the Tyrians and Sidonians, for the supply of timber for building the Temple. The work actually commenced with great rejoicing, mingled however with the lamentations of those who had witnessed the greater glory of the former Temple, in the second month of the following year. Thus far all had progressed favorably. The spirit of the people rose superior to all obstacles and hindrances, and the great work which they had in view bid fair to arrive at a speedy and prosperous issue.

“But a serious check was now encountered, and a delay of some fifteen years consequently intervened. The Samaritans, their neighbors in Northern Palestine, had requested to be allowed to take part in the rebuilding of the Temple, on the plea, ‘we seek your God, as ye do.’ But the plea was ignored and the request peremptorily and indignantly refused. ‘Ye have nothing to do with us to build an house unto our God,’ was the uncompromising reply. Offended at the refusal the Samaritans made representations at the Persian court, with a view to stop the work in which they were counted unworthy to co‑operate. During the reigns of Cambyses (the Ahasuerus of the book of Ezra), who ascended the Persian throne on the death of Cyrus, and of the usurper Smerdis (the Artaxerxes of the same book), by whom he was succeeded, the representations of the enemies of the Jews prevailed, and the building of the Temple was absolutely prohibited. It was not till Darius, the son of Hystapes, on the overthrow of Smerdis, was placed upon the throne, that the policy of Cyrus was resumed, and favor was again extended to the community at Jerusalem.

“It is at this juncture that the prophets Haggai and Zechariah appear upon the scene. With them, as we learn from the book of Ezra, the resumption of the Temple works originated. The spirit of the people had been broken by obstacles which appeared insuperable. Their zeal for the House of the Lord had grown cold through the long delay. They had come to acquiesce in what they deemed inevitable. They looked on the unfinished work, on the bare foundations, and said, ‘the time is not come, the time that the Lord’s House should be built.’ They turned aside to selfish objects and secular pursuits. On their own houses they bestowed labor. Them they decorated with the wainscot of cedar which had once been deemed the peculiar ornament of the Sanctuary.

“To rouse them from this state of lethargy and to prepare them to rise to the new opportunity, which the changed policy of the Persian government was about to offer them, the prophetic call came in the name of the God of Israel which was upon them, it summoned them to arise and work. The first to respond to it were the rulers civil and ecclesiastical, Zerubbabel the Prince or Governor, and Joshua the High Priest. Whether they too had come to share in any measure the general apathy, or whether, unable any longer to communicate their own zeal to their countrymen, they had perforce been idle, we do not know. At any rate, they now placed themselves at the head of the movement to restore the work.

“A further hindrance was threatened by the interference of the Satrap of Syria and other Persian officials, to whose immediate authority the Jews were subject. But Darius, to whom the matter was referred, not only forbade any obstacle to be offered, but by a royal decree charged the revenues of the province with the cost of rebuilding the temple and providing sacrifices. Thus encouraged, the Jews set themselves heartily to the work, the prophets of God helping and inciting them still throughout. They builded and they prospered through the prophesying of Haggai the Prophet and of Zechariah the son of Iddo. In four years time, in the sixth year of Darius, the Temple was completed.”


The lengthy foregoing detail has been given because it has a direct bearing on much of what the prophet wrote. He was the first of the three prophets, who belong to that final stage of Jewish history which began with the return from the captivity in Babylon. Two of those prophets – he and Zechariah – prophesied at its commencement. Malachi followed about a hundred years later. After that, the voice of prophecy was silent for four centuries – until the days of John the Baptist.

Of the personal history of Haggai scarcely anything is known. His parentage and tribe are not given. There is some supposition that he was among the captives that returned from Babylon, and tradition has it that he was born during the exile. There is a rumor that he was one of that small band of survivors who, having been originally carried away by Nebuchadnezzar, lived to revisit their native country. However, this idea is based upon his reference to the Temple ‘in her first glory’ (ch. 2:3), but this scanty reference does not give much weight to that conclusion. As we have stated previously, some of his older ancestors who had actually seen Solomon’s Temple had told him about it. There is also some opinion that he was with Daniel, when he saw his vision – “By the side of the great river which is Hiddekel” (Dan. 10:4), this being just another name for the river Tigris.

In addition to the prophecy which bears his name there is some comment by Ezra in the first chapters of his book. In Ezra 6:14 considerable detail is given along with the name of Artaxerxes, king of Persia; and that Haggai was the actor in some of that. In the Septuagint Psalms 145‑148 are headed “Alleluia – of Haggai, and of Zechariah.”

One ancient writer says that Haggai was the first to sing Hallelujah in the restored Temple, and he adds, “therefore we say, Alleluia which is the hymn of Haggai and Zechariah.” There are only two chapters to his book; and it seems abbreviated; but it is a good sample of Haggai’s style and inspiration. They are exactly to the point and the purpose for which they were written. All the real prophets of Israel were preachers of righteousness, but they also predicated future events – much of which they could not understand. This is especially true of ch. 2:7, which we shall discuss later. It is well to keep in mind that the promise of future blessing for the entire human race is embodied in the promise to Abraham, “In thee, and thy seed (the Jewish people), shall all families of the earth be blessed.” From time to time that “seed” has been reproved and severely chastened, the longest of which up to the time of Haggai had been the seventy years of affliction in Babylon – from the Fall of 607 BC to 536 BC. Of course, along with these chastenings the promise of future blessings was needed to prevent them from giving up in despair. This was particularly true of the seventy years in Babylon, where they were surrounded on all sides by heathen idolatry. And, when John the Baptist began to preach “the kingdom of heaven is at hand,” he received a ready ear from many of the people, although that waned when Jesus failed to restore that kingdom. Even John himself, when he was in prison, sent some of his followers to ask Jesus if He were really the Messiah, or should they look for another. Then, after His resurrection, about the first question Jesus’ own close followers asked Him, “Wilt thou at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” (Acts 1:6)


In Chapter 2:6‑9 “I will shake all nations, and the desire of all nations shall come.” It is our understanding that part of this prophecy is being fulfilled now. Everywhere we look the nations are being badly shaken; and most of the financial writers present a very gloomy view of present prospects. The nations are indeed being shaken in all quarters of the earth. “I will shake the heavens and the earth.” That this is highly figurative language is readily apparent, because no one believes that God is going to shake the place of His abode. The heavens in this text are the present religious systems, and the earth is the present social order. This shaking began in 1914, and has been increasing in violence ever since. As we have stated in previous papers, when the, Russian government was so badly shaken in 1917, the Greek Catholic Church – the State Church of that country – the czar and his family were destroyed. Up to that time the czar was the titular head of that church, so they now operate without any tangible head. Even worse has taken place in Cuba (the Roman Catholic Church); and that Church has received severe blows in Brazil, in the Philippines, Mexico, etc.

The Desire Of All Nations” – Unquestionably, the desire of all nations is peace and safety. To have this in proper degree the people must also enjoy good health, which is certainly not true now, even with those who claim good health. Sickness and death are apparent on every hand. Yet the promise is there: “The inhabitant shall not say, I am sick.” (Isa. 33:24) Not only will they then have health, but they shall also be taught the Truth – especially so the truth on God’s word: “When the Lord’s judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness.” (Isa” 26:9) And to emphasize this, the Apostle John gives us this added assurance: “God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying; neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.” (Rev. 21:4)

Haggai himself emphasizes this in 2:21, 22: “I will shake the heavens and the earth; and I will overthrow the throne of kingdoms, and I will destroy the strength of the kingdoms of the heathen; and I will overthrow the chariots; and those that ride in them... In that day, saith the Lord of hosts, will I take thee, O Zerubhabel, my servant,... and will make thee a signet (typical of Jesus and the Christ Company): for I have chosen thee.” Haggai is the tenth of the minor prophets. His four prophecies were delivered within the space of four months in the 26th year of Darius Hystaspis. His book consists of only 38 verses, but this short writing is very potent in it import. May our readers profit by its study!

“My counsel shall stand, and I will do all My pleasure:... yea I have spoken it? I will also bring it to pass; I have purposed it, I will also do it.” (Isa. 46:10,11)

Sincerely your brother, John J. Hoefle, Pilgrim

(Written by Brother Hoefle March 30, 31, April 1, 2 and 4th 1983)


QUESTION: – The Epiphany Messenger taught that the ‘sons’ of Joel 2:28 include both converted fleshly Israel and the persevering, but unconsecrated believers of the Gospel Age. So why do you make such an issue over some part of the quasi elect Gentiles being first and chief in the Kingdom, as Brother Jolly teaches?

ANSWER: – We make an issue of it because the Scriptures make an issue of it. Joel 2:28 is a Kingdom picture. The unconsecrated Gentile believers are the “repentant and believing,” and none of them can consecrate to God in the Epiphany Camp and that consecration be accepted. God toes not accept consecrations of Restitutionists in the Epiphany Camp, nor will He accept consecrations in the Mediatorial Camp. Jesus has full control of the Restitutionists, and God will not accept them until Jesus has perfected the willing and obedient. (1 Cor. 15:24) That is no reason why they will not be highly favored at the incept of the Kingdom, as the quasi‑elect Gentiles will then become Jews and will join the natural Jews in zealous missionary activity. But none of the quasi‑elect Gentiles will supersede the Jews – arrogate the promise made to the natural Jews – “To the Jew first.” All Restitutionists will have to become Jews if they receive the blessings of the New covenant. The New Covenant will be made with the natural Jews: “You only have I known of all the families of the earth.” (Amos 3:2) “Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and the house of Judah.” (Jer. 31:31)

And we make an issue about this also because it sets aside the “faith once delivered unto the saints” and replaces it with subversive doctrines and practices. We only need to read any parts of the Six Volumes of the Studies in the Scriptures regarding the Jewish Hopes and Prospects to find that our contentions are for the Truth given to us by That Servant. We now quote excerpts from Volume One, The Divine Plan of the Ages:

“When considering the many precious promises of future blessing made to Israel, and expecting an accurate fulfillment of them to that people; it is proper that we should remember that as a people they are typical, as well as actual. In one aspect they are typical of the whole world of mankind; and their Law Covenant of obedience and life, was typical of the New Covenant to be established with the world during the Millennial and future Ages.

“The blood of atonement under their typical Covenant, and the Priesthood which applied it to that nation, typified the blood of the New Covenant and the Royal Priesthood which will, during the Millennium, apply its cleansings and blessings to the whole world. Thus their priesthood typified the Christ, and that nation typified all for whom the real sacrifice was made and to whom the real blessings will come – ‘every man,’ – ‘the whole world.’

“Then let us remember that though the future blessings, like the past, will be to the Jew first and also to the Gentile, it will be in the matter of time only that the Jews will have the precedence to Divine favor; and this we have shown would be a natural consequence of their training under the Law, which in due time will serve its purpose to bring them to Christ. Though it brought only a remnant of them at the First Advent, it will bring them as a people at the Second Advent, and as a people they will be a first‑fruit among the nations.” (Parousia Volume One, pp. 297,298)

We have never done any more than quote from the Messengers’ teaching and from the Scriptures in our refutation of the “strange fire” being taught of a non‑existent class of quasi‑elect consecrated superseding the Jews in the Mediatorial Kingdom. However, we are not surprised at the “new light” that comes from crown‑lost leaders, because so long as they remain uncleansed they are unable even to retain many of the Truths they once received.

The Apostle Paul calls our attention specially to the sureness of God’s promises to Israel in the future, and shows what favors they lost by unbelief and what favors are still sure. He says that it was because of pride, hardness of heart and unbelief that Israel as a people had not obtained that for which they sought. But we must remember that the Jews were first to receive the blessings of the High Calling, and they will be the first to receive the blessings of the New Covenant in the Kingdom.

Written by Brother Hoefle September 30, 1972



Dear Sister Hoefle: Grace and peace!

I was very glad to get your welcome letter, and to receive your encouragement. We sure look at things very much alike. I suppose it is because we have kept the faith. I am gradually getting adjusted to Sister’s death and realize that according to the circumstances it is all for the best. ............

I surely hope that you won’t overdo it and will try to take it as easy as you can. I finally received the Jan.‑Feb. PT. I see Brother G tried to ridicule the 1984 date, but I disagree with him, as I believe it surely is a turning point, as things have surely turned for the worse in Middle East, Politics and financial conditions, as well as Religion, etc. Any one can see that! So that didn’t go down with me. He sure had a long report all right, more so than usual. But there was hardly a new fact in it that I didn’t already know.

The LHMM is rapidly becoming a carbon copy of the JW’s. There is no doubt that the LHMM’s converts are really worldings – Restitutionists for sure. They sure did make a bad mistake when they gave up Youthful Worthy hope – “until Restitution begins,” which I still believe as Brother Johnson taught it.

Well, I must close for now. I am glad you still have regular meetings.

With Christian love, Bro. ------- (MICHIGAN)


Dear Sister Emily: Loving greetings in His Name!

I don’t expect you to answer this letter... I only want you to know how much I appreciate your gift. My little hut needs some repairs, and I am going to put the work in hand right away. Thank you! and thank you very much!

How good it was of you to send me a copy of the United Israel Bulletin! I am mad about Jewish affairs. How true it is! The Jews are God’s barometer. It was wonderful also to see how well you and the brethren have circulated Brother Hoefle’s work. Brother Hoefle had absorbed the perfume of Jesus in so great measure that the scent will always linger behind. What always struck me most forcefully about Brother Hoefle, was his deep spirituality. Of course, I don’t for one moment forget the hard work and self‑sacrificing devotion that you contributed in his support. God grant you courage and grace to follow in his footsteps as he followed in Christ‘s.

I see where your nephew is very ill. Dear Sister, how do you bear it? God must specially love you, for whatever son He loveth He chasteneth. Trouble really draws us closer to Him. ‘Are ye able to drink of my cup?’ I think you have a great big cup. May God sustain you and comfort you with His loving arms.

Sincerely, ------- (JAMAICA)


Dear Sister Hoefle: Grace and peace be multiplied!

Thank you for your thoughtful letter. The Truman article was enjoyed, and it makes us wonder how many rulers of this day have unknowingly been influenced to carry out God’s plan.

It was with great pleasure that I received the January paper – Retrospect and Prospect. I have read it over many times. Yes, the world is indeed in a sad state of affairs, but what a blessing it is to read about prophecy that is being fulfilled – and the remainder of our hope promised in Scripture, and ultimately the hope of the whole world.

I can only join the many that have praised you and the Bible House brethren for so aptly continuing dear Brother Hoefle’s work. What a joy it was to read in the United Israel Bulletin the articles by Brother Russell and Brother Hoefle, along with the acknowledgement of your continuing work within the Epiphany Bible Students Ass’n. I was appreciative of the poem by Delta Clinard in memory of Brother Hoefle.

Thank you again for your thoughtful letter. The Lord bless, strengthen and guide all the Bible House brethren in their work.

With warm Christian love and the assurance of our prayers.

Faithfully yours, ------- (CALIFORNIA)