My dear Brethren: Grace and peace through our Beloved Master!
Another year gone – but not easily forgotten. The year’s turmoil has kept pace with – has probably exceeded – the advances in science, and the deterioration in the financial structure. The scientific accomplishments have indeed been astounding in several directions. In Michigan some artisans have perfected a blueberry-picking machine that will do the work of 300 laborers; and this machine seems to be as sensitive as the human touch and the human eye, since it picks only the ripe berries, while leaving the green ones on the vines.
Also, the various electronic and computing devices are in some instances so sensitive that they must be kept in air-conditioned surroundings, keeping the temperature constant in order to secure proper action. A telephone technician recently told us that such machines now in use by the telephone company are so sensitive that no one is allowed to smoke in that room. He further informed us that those machines will notify them within thirty seconds if any one has tapped a telephone line anywhere in the city – that it will advise whether the tap has been made on the line from the telephone pole to the building, or if it has been done inside the building where the phone is located. “In the time of the end knowledge shall be increased.” In this connection, Brother Johnson gave us the following statement in Epiphany Vol. 9, p. 407 (50):
“Our Pastor sketched in various details of progress (of Dan. 12:4) the vehicles – steamboats, submarines, railroad trains, trolleys, autos, buses, airships, airplanes, etc.”
Volume 9 was published in 1938; and, while those things mentioned in that book are truly amazing, the past thirty years have phenomenally pyramided the intricacies of scientific invention.
Nor has Israel been without profit from the scientific skills of this grand and awful time. A recent radio report stated they had increased the rainfall there during 1966 by 17% – through scientific manipulation – quite a welcome draught to a desert land. And they are hopeful for further increase. However, another more certain means of water is to come to that country through the construction of three gigantic filter plants that will eliminate the salt from the sea water, through providing certain irrigation for all of the land – at a cost of two billion dollars. In detailing how a combination of nickel and copper will enter essentially into this performance, our informant then exclaimed, Then you’ll see the desert blossom as the rose!
The financial structure has kept apace – in decay – with the advance in science. It is estimated that the overall debt in the United States at this time – Federal, State, Local and private – now is more than 1½ trillion dollars. Such a figure is beyond human understanding. And, while not so much is publicized about this enormous financial load, it comes to us from private sources that the more astute among the financiers are at least attempting to protect themselves against the collapse of this gigantic paper house. In 1966, for instance, all newly-mined gold has disappeared – plus forty million more. The newly-mined gold in the “free” world was worth more than one billion dollars. Then, in the first quarter of 1967 all the new gold disappeared, plus seventy million more – for that one quarter alone. Not all of this went into private hoarding, of course, as much of it was used in jewelry, in manufacture, etc. At the end of March of this year the total financial gold for the entire world was slightly more than 43 billion, which, if placed in one pile, would make a cube about 50 x 50 x 50 feet.
As usual, the politicians want no talk concerning the relationship of gold to the paper they have printed. Their by-word has been “Instant Money” – by the printing press. Inasmuch as the United States now holds less than 13 billions in gold – against which there are more than 30 billions of foreign demands payable in gold – our financial manipulators have been forced to raise interest rates, forcing other countries to do the same. At 5% the interest on 30 billions is 1½ billions each year – the ‘blackmail money’ they must now pay each year to prevent our foreign creditors from demanding payment in hard money – gold.
This great increase in paper money has led to what is styled “creeping inflation” – as against what is termed “galloping inflation.” To illustrate the former: A mechanic was recently engaged in wrecking a building, and he casually remarked that he had helped to construct that same building forty years ago at forty cents per hour; now he was helping tear it down at four dollars per hour. Over the years this great increase has been gradual – creeping inflation not distressingly noticeable to the average person, but decidedly real nonetheless.
On the other hand, some other countries have already experienced galloping inflation, a classic example being Germany after Hitler decided to eliminate the internal debt by destroying the value of the Mark. We are well acquainted with one man who was in the midst of that financial debacle; and he related that it had become so bad that, when they received their pay on Saturday noon, they did not walk, they all ran to the Belgian border about two blocks away to convert those marks into foreign currency before it shrank even lower. And there is much concern that a similar condition might soon develop in the United States.
Coming events cast their shadows before; and one such ‘shadow’ is the 1967 contract made by labor with the automobile plants. The increases they received are so great that it must eventually lead to one of two things – either galloping inflation, or a drastic depression brought on by pricing ourselves out of the world markets. It is our opinion that it will be the latter.
INTERNATIONAL MONETARY SEMINAR: This gathering was held in New York City November 3,4-5 – perhaps the first of its kind ever to be organized – and it was our special privilege to attend, through the invitation of one of the principal speakers. Theme of this Seminar was “The Value of Money, Today and Tomorrow”; and the program included outstanding men from England, from South Africa, from Japan, from Canada, from Switzerland, from France, from Germany, from Mexico, from the United States – ‘brilliant men, qualified to speak on money and free markets.” Attendance was by invitation only, so we considered ourself much favored to be there; the general public did not even know the conference was in progress. An outstanding remark from one of the speakers was this: We are now in the 54th year of monetary disorder (since 1914).
It was also stated that the debt-increasing-money-supply system resulted in an increase of 95.1 billion in US public and private debt in 1966, and unofficial estimates indicate it will be even larger in 1967. This latter conclusion is based somewhat on the fact that the debt increased 80.5 billion in 1963, 85.7 in 1964, and 93.2 in 1965. Concerning this appalling situation, the speaker quoted another writer as follows:
“You have to be richer than Croesus, wiser than Socrates, and have the callousness of an ox to attempt to break the monopoly which the aggressive but fundamentally ignorant so-called New Economists of today try to create for themselves and us.”
INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND: This year 1967 the meeting of this group was held in Rio de Janeiro; and we are informed the schism was so great among them that the French representative actually walked out of the gathering a day before it was over. The sharp differences were regarding high interest rates (on worthless paper) and international liquidity. Of course, it is very difficult for the outsider to determine if those advocates of high interest and printing-press money really don’t know any better, or whether they are actuated from grossly selfish motives. In our own IMF office in Washington there are 850 well-paid international civil servants – 100 more than two years ago. Their headquarters are so luxurious that they include marble-walled elevator cars, a new three-story palatial entertainment hall with a splashing fountain and glittering chandeliers. This year the IMF governors and members of their staff attended the Rio de Janeiro meeting; and, according to one financial publication, the US delegation “was buttressed by a whole Air Force plane-load of about 45 officials, plus wives and secretarial help.” One does not need to be overly observant to understand why such people are loud in their clamor for the present system. Why should they want to be rid of such an elegant setup as that – it should go on forever. Much the same as one prominent oil magnate, when asked in Court what were his chief duties as Director of his company, replied, “To clamor for dividends.” The words of St. Paul come strikingly to mind: “They all shall wax old as doth a garment; and as a vesture shalt thou fold them up, and they shall be changed.” (Heb. 1:11,12)
The political fabric also “waxes old as doth a garment.” As one financial writer has stated, If you expect to have a good year ahead, one of the primary conclusions you must reach is not to believe any of the promises your Government may make. When men must compromise their moral standards for the votes of people who cannot even sign their own names in the voting booth, it is not difficult to understand the kind of men who eventually gain office. Last summer we were in Detroit during that disastrous riot there. We looked out of our window on the fifth floor of a building, saw the mobs smashing windows and looting at will, with a large part of the city in flames, while the politicians ordered the police not to use force in intervention – a vivid modern example of Nero fiddling while Rome burned. One financial expert remarked to us that the politicians were allowing the civil moral fibre to corrode in like manner as the financiers were doing with the financial structure. There is violent crime in the streets of Detroit – in broad daylight in the business center of the city. “They have sown the wind, and they shall reap the whirlwind.” (Hos. 8:11) This now applies with equal force to finance and politics. Much could be said about it; but we may later treat of this situation from the prophetic standpoint, giving in much more detail the happenings in Detroit last summer – the same being a harbinger of yet more and worse to come.
Nor can any one be justly accused of prejudice for blaming the politicians for much of the trouble in the world today. The dividing of Berlin – half to the Communists and half to the western part of Germany – could be nothing more than bungling politics. It was an ideal arrangement to “make” trouble. The same must be said for Jerusalem – half to the Jews and half to the Arabs – both enemies from the twilight of history. Concerning Ishmael – progenitor of the Arabs – it was prophetically written: “He will be a wild man; his hand will be against every man, and every man’s hand against him.” (Gen. 16:12) Could Anything but trouble come from dividing Jerusalem between two such antagonists? In the 1914-18 conflict the Lord miraculously saved the city from crossfire between the Turks and the English (See our paper No. 30 of Jan. 1, 1958). Once more it was saved last summer in the conflict between the Arabs and the Jews; but the question is certainly properly in order, How many times will the Lord allow Himself to be tempted in such fashion?
The River Jordan is a type of the curse upon the human race, the river ever going lower and lower, until it is about 1,300 feet below sea level when it reaches the Dead Sea. And Joshua 3:15 tells us that “Jordan overfloweth all his banks all the time of the harvest.” “The Harvest is the end of the Age,” said Jesus (Matt. 13:39, Dia.); and, having come to the end, we may expect the evidences of the curse to be more glaringly apparent in every place, but especially so in Christendom, where privileges are being abused, graft and corruption of politicians is rampant, and “the love of money” is debasing men in high positions. There can be little argument but that “civil rights” of the downtrodden (white or black) in America should have been sponsored years ago; but civil rights have been speedily corrupted into “civil wrongs” – much the same as when parents, wanting to be kind and generous to their children, “spare the rod, and spoil the child.” This is exactly what has happened in those cities where the illiterate, the immoral, the irresponsible, the criminally-inclined have been given more of “civil rights” than they can properly handle. It is a sage observation that few people can stand extreme adversity, but fewer still can stand great prosperity. The back-breaking toil and long hours of labor in the past were undoubtedly unjust; but that very evil had a certain restraining influence for good – it gave men neither the money nor the time to get into trouble. But the present reform measures have given the “sea” (the restless and lawless masses of humanity) more of liberty and leisure than they can properly bear.
The walls of many religious systems are also deteriorating. The creeds, the strict scruples of the past, are crumbling toward combinationism – the flimsy ideal that it matters not what one believes so long as he is sincere in that belief. This is in violent contrast to St. Paul’s version that there is but “one Lord, one faith (belief), one baptism” (Eph. 4:5), and to St. Peter’s contention that “there is none other name under Heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12) In flouting these inspired statements, the Archbishop of Canterbury paid a visit to Pope Paul VI. He is 100th in succession to St. Augustine, Canterbury’s first archbishop in 597. He believes that the Church of Rome and the Church of England should work together as allies rather than rivals. Apparently he has forgotten what caused the cleavage in the first instance – when King Henry the Eighth divorced the Roman Church by adhering to the Biblical teaching of Thomas Cranmer that the Church is subject to the State in civil matters. To this the Church of Rome is diametrically opposed; the two positions are so inimical to each other that it is much the same as encouraging a friendly alliance between God and the Adversary.
THE JEWS: Among those who were once “in full harmony” with That Servant there is now pronounced difference on Israel and Palestine. The Jehovah’s Witnesses – who still claim to be “THE Channel” for Truth and salvation (no salvation for those now living who do not now join them) – have consigned the Jews in Palestine to annihilation. Thus they offer “Comfort to the Arabs”; whereas, they were one time emphatic in their message “Comfort For The Jews.” On the other hand, other divisions of the Harvest Movement are now stressing “Comfort For The Jews,” especially so, since their astounding victory over their neighbors in the war last summer. However, viewing matters with worldly wisdom, it would seem that the Jews are needing very little “Comfort”; the decisive defeat of their enemies is certainly comfort sufficient for present needs. In this conclusion, however, let none decide that we are forgetting Zech. 14:1-3 and the final stroke of Jacob’s Trouble at the extreme end of this “present evil world” – at which time the Israelites indeed will realize the promise, “Then shall the Lord go forth and fight against those nations, as when He fought in the Day of Battle.”
THE TRUTH GROUPS: In discussing this matter, we shall resort largely to what That Servant wrote on “The Rewards of Sacrifice” in the June 15, 1911 Tower (Reprint 4835), as it is a direct contradiction to the claims of many now claiming “full harmony” with him. Here is a small quote from that article:
“Quite likely, therefore, there will be some in the end of this Age who, although faithful unto death, will not have been begotten of the Holy Spirit and not attain the spirit plane of being in the Resurrection, but who will come forth members of the same class as the Ancient Worthies, who were developed before this Age began.”
All of us know that the Jehovah’s Witnesses, who claim to be “The Channel” in like manner as was That Servant during the Harvest reaping work, long ago denied such a class; and have substituted for them their Jonadabs, or now called the “Large Multitude.” To produce such a class they have had to deny That Servant’s interpretation of Rev. 7:9-17, along with many other Scriptures.
Also, at Memorial they deny this Large Multitude the privilege of the bread and the wine, another feature also directly contradicted by That Servant:
“At the Memorial season all of the consecrated should manifest their love, loyalty, obedience, faithfulness, by symbolizing the Redeemer’s death and symbolizing their own desire to share in the sufferings of Christ as parts of the ‘broken loaf’ and as participators in the cup of His sufferings.”
Also, THE DAWNS claim “full harmony” with That Servant, but find themselves hard pressed to reconcile their present course with parts of this same article:
“But suppose that some should present themselves after the close of the acceptable time; what would be their status, and God’s dealing with them? .... We cannot now assure them (at June 15, 1911) that, after presenting themselves as sacrifices, God will accept them as such and grant them spirit-begetting to a new nature; but we can assure them that it will be their reasonable service and that God always gives large rewards to those who manifest their faith and loyalty towards Him and their cause. We can tell them, too, that, to our understanding, the Scriptures teach that the Ancient Worthy class (of which they may be a part if they fail to be accepted to the new nature) will be highly honored of God..... made ‘princes in all the earth.’“
We here stress that this article was written more than 56 years ago, at which time That Servant would not even then assure any one of a place in the High Calling. Yet the Dawns are now preaching such assurance, even as they ‘profess’ “full harmony” with the writer of that article.
The Laymen’s Home Missionary Movement in like manner vitiates the article under discussion, while also making loud claim to “full harmony” with That Servant:
“We can assure them that, to our understanding, these princes will have a glorious precedence over the remainder of mankind as the special representatives of the invisible Messiah class for a thousand years. We can assure them that, to our understanding, after participating in that glorious work these princes will be uplifted at the close of the Millennium to the spirit plane of being as part of the antitypical Levites.”
It is indeed tragic to record that all Truth groups but one reject the above teaching by That Servant; whereas, the Epiphany Messenger accepted it in toto, and elaborated and clarified it by producing numerous prophetic texts in clear proof of the teaching. Yet those Truth groups who are one in rejecting That Servant’s teachings are also almost all in complete agreement in their rejection of the Messenger who has faithfully upheld That Servant’s teachings. And, even of the one group (the LHMM) who claims “full harmony” with That Servant – and also the Epiphany Messenger – they by their present teachings belie their claim, as they have now ruled out the possibility of any attaining membership in that elect class now – in full rejection of both Messengers’ teachings that such opportunity would be available until Restitution sets in. (See Epiphany Vol. 4, pp. 337, 342) At present the LHMM does not teach such opportunity to newcomers, as they also have a newly invented class of their own making. Whereas, the Dawns still promise newcomers a superior position to the Ancient Worthies (the High Calling), the LHMM now offers them an inferior position, offering them nothing more for present self-denials than will come to the entire race – perfection on the human plane. Note now a little more from the article: “Nowhere in the Scriptures are we commanded by the Lord to sacrifice our earthly rights and privileges. The Divine commands end at the line of justice.... All sacrificing is a privilege, not a duty, not a command. In harmony with this St. Paul writes, not commandingly, but entreatingly ‘I beseech you, brethren.... present your bodies living sacrifices.’ He did not command this.....Whatever is commanded of God is obligation and not sacrifice.”
Their perversion of this article has forced them to invent a new class here in the end of the Age – just as the Witnesses have done – the difference being only in the name of Consecrated Epiphany Campers (also an invention). And, while the Witnesses have eliminated the real Great Multitude to make way for their nonexistent class, the LHMM has now estopped entrance into that class described in the article as being eligible to membership with the Ancient Worthies (since 1954, almost fourteen years ago); and are also declaring no more saints on earth since 1950. We shall have more to say about this in a later writing.
THE GREAT REFORMER: The response to this No. 7 tract has been most gratifying. When preparing it, little did we anticipate the generous reception it would receive from ministers, from evangelists and from editors of religious magazines – quite a few of them asking to be placed on our regular mailing list, and offering to pay for the service. The tract has had distribution in more than 21 foreign countries, such as England, France, Scotland, Germany, Canada, Jamaica, Trinidad, Japan, Argentina, Mozambique, Taiwan, Costa Rica, Hawaii, the Philippines, Chile, and numerous other countries – although we do not wish to convey the impression that it was extensive in all of them; in fact, in many of them it was a token circulation to specific individuals. However, in all this effort only one criticism came to us, and that came from Japan. None at all from the United States or England, Scotland, France, Trinidad, Jamaica and other places where there was greater distribution. With the help of a number of the friends, this was made possible, we have made extensive distribution in many of the larger cities – such as New York, Chicago, Philadelphia, Detroit, Los Angeles, Memphis, Etc., as well as in many of the smaller communities, and practically all the larger cities of North Carolina. Also, a considerable number of churches were served with it on Sundays – receiving a very generous reception there, too. During all this, however, the Special Effort with the Gideon tracts was pursued vigorously by a number of zealous brethren. But we emphasize, it is not our thought to give preference to the No. 7 tract, as we still consider the chief work toward the public to be what the Epiphany Messenger stressed; namely, antitypical Gideon’s Second Battle with Where Are the Dead and What Is the Soul, etc. However, the Reformer tract has proven an excellent complement to the Gideon tracts, having brought many requests for those tracts from those who have received them.
In this connection we are most happy to relate that The Reformer tract is not the only paper that has accomplished impressive results. A few months back we were listening to one minister on radio, one who offers frequent orations over extensive radio network; and we were decidedly surprised to hear him say that he was not above accepting the truth, even if it did violence to his previously-held ideas. Then he proceeded to discourse on What Is the Soul; and he gave almost word for word a large part of what is contained in that tract. In fact, the major part of his sermon on his half-hour program was devoted to that topic. In his talk he stressed repeatedly that MAN IS MORTAL! Unwittingly he was participating with us in the Special Effort in antitypical Gideon’s Second Battle. Such response and results should encourage all of us to continue in the Truth and its Arrangements, as we zealously seek to study, practice and spread the truth.
A TIMELY WARNING
On p. 74, col. 2, of the May 1944 Present Truth the Epiphany Messenger offers excellent warning and counsel under the heading, “The Enemies of Obedience,” from which we offer the following excerpts:
“There are opponents to our rendering obedience to the Lord. Our great adversary is constantly plotting to make us disobedient to the Lord. He has a thousand and one reasons to offer to secure our obedience to himself and our disobedience to the Lord, well knowing that if he can gain it, he has defeated us in a fight, and if he can make us habitually disobedient, he knows that he has defeated us in the entire warfare. Hence we should give no room to the devil by yielding to his temptations to disobedience; and if he finds it impossible to lure us into disobedience, he will let us alone on that subject and try to overthrow us on some other point of character. The World is also an opponent of our obedience. It tries at times through our families to make us rebellious against the Lord. In our friends it frequently seeks to do this. Sometimes in our business or co-worker associates it tries to make us unfaithful. Not seldom has it, working through the civil powers, sought this end. Especially in the nominal church has it sought to do this.
“Through the fleshly minds of our brethren, which are really a part of the world, has the world sought to make us disobedient. This has been true all through the Gospel Age; for the world opponents of the faithful have, in the main, been the fleshly minds of crown-losers, particularly the crown-lost leaders of the nominal church. The Levite leaders among the various groups of Truth people, by their fleshly minds, have misled many crown-lost brethren into disobedience to the Lord’s Word and Arrangements, and have constantly sought to mislead the faithful into such insubordination. And our flesh, in a thousand and one ways through our selfish and worldly affections, is constantly seeking to oppose us and make us self-willed and obdurate as to the Lord, His Word and Spirit.
“Balaam was inveigled into the wrong of disobedience by his love of money and honor, typical of false teachers during the Gospel Age (Num. 22-26). Saul was involved into disobedience through his love of spoils and popularity, typical of crown-lost leaders (1 Sam. 13:13; 15:3,9) David disobeyed the Lord in connection with Bath-sheba and Uriah (2 Sam. 12). Solomon became disobedient in idolatry, typical of the papacy (I Kings 11:7-10). Ahab disobeyed God in sparing Ben-hadad, typical of the civil powers sparing the radicals (1 Kings 20-22). The people of Judah disobeyed the Lord in not remaining in Judea, but in going to Egypt, typical of Americans not retaining as much of truth and righteousness as they had and in entering into all sorts of worldliness (Jer. 43:7; 44:12-14). All of these – the types and antitypes, as well as others, tasted the bitter fruits of disobedience; for disobedience always brings evils upon its doers. All of us by information, observation and experience know this to be true, which, as well as the foregoing considerations, should make us guard ourselves with all diligence against the opponents of obedience and the inciters to disobedience.”
In conclusion we would heartily reciprocate the many Holiday greetings that have come to us, and we extend cordial good wishes to God’s people everywhere to all who call upon the name of the Lord in sincerity and in Truth. May the year ahead see increased growth in Grace and in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus. ‘‘And thanks to that God, who gives us the victory, through our Lord Jesus Christ. Wherefore, my beloved brethren, be you settled, unmoved, abounding in the work of the Lord at all times, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.” (1 Cor. 15:57,58—Diaglott)
Sincerely your brother,
John J. Hoefle, Pilgrim
QUESTION OF GENERAL INTEREST
QUESTION: – Gen. 1:2 says, “The earth was without form and void.” Can this statement be the truth? Could earth possibly exist without having some ‘form’?
ANSWER: – As given in the King James version, the statement is misleading, as a little reflection will disclose that all matter must have some form to it. A handful of soft clay squeezed through the fingers would have no form that could be clearly defined, since it would be neither square, round, oblong, rectangle, etc.; but it still would have some form. The same would be true of the earth – even when it was nothing more than pristine mud or Paleozoic slime; it would self-evidently have some sort of form.
The misunderstanding prompted by the question is to be found in the faulty translation of the King James version. Verse 1 begins, “In the beginning.” It should be properly stated, “In a beginning,” since this earth was not the very first object of creation. (See John 1:1-3) Likewise verse 2 of the cosmogonic record would more correctly state the matter, “The earth was waste and empty” –probably encased completely in water, heavy steam, or a soupy combination of water, steam and solid materials. And, as such, it would truly be ‘‘waste and empty’’ without vegetation and without animal life of any kind, as many other planets now seem to be. The word ‘form’ is from the Hebrew ‘tohu,’ meaning literally ‘a ruin,’ or waste; and ‘void’ is from the Hebrew ‘bohu,’ meaning ‘emptiness.’
Supplement to No. 151 - Jan. 1968
CONCERNING TENTATIVE JUSTIFICATION
Since Brother Russell's death there has arisen much controversy concerning this subject. J. F. Rutherford and others have been emphatic in their denial of the doctrine completely, claiming that Brother Russell also “changed his view” on tentative justification in the latter part of his ministry. This put Brother Johnson to much toil to refute their claims, and to prove from the Scriptures that it is a sound Bible doctrine. We also went into quite some detail on the subject in our paper No. 120, which we had concluded would be sufficient to silence all the gainsayers.
But now comes another perversion of the doctrine. This time by R. G. Jolly, who stressed from the platform at the Chicago Convention in October that tentative justification would continue throughout the Millennium: and claimed that Brother Russell taught such perversion. Here once more we have the extreme of two errors one crown-loser denying the doctrine completely; the other crown-loser contending tentative justification will go on forever (i.e., until the end of the Millennium). Brother Johnson stressed that it is the error on tentative justification that gives rise to other errors – such as the non-existent class of Jonadabs (now styled by the Witnesses, the Large Multitude); and now another non-existent class – Campers Consecrated – invented by RGJ. It should be evident that both of these crown-lost leaders had to have the same teacher – AZAZEL – and, Azazel means Perverter.
To continue his listeners in their uninterrupted sleep, RGJ had to by-pass the Epiphany Messenger completely in what he taught about tentative justification, so we now quote just a little from E-15:261:
“Let us see the conditions of justification that will prevail during the Millennial Age. During that Age there will be neither a tentative nor a vitalized justification, since both of these kinds of justification operate on the basis of the imputed ransom merit, as distinct from the applied ransom merit; and the Millennium will have no imputed, but an applied ransom merit operating.”
From the foregoing, there can be no question about what Brother Johnson believed, so we now ask if RGJ is trying to tell us that the Epiphany Messenger did not understand this doctrine? And is he also now telling us that the Epiphany Messenger (a Star Member) revolutionized against this fundamental doctrine? And that he thus lost his standing as a Star Member? This second conclusion would properly follow the first if RGJ is now right in his contentions. We emphasize this situation because it was Brother Johnson himself who stressed the doctrine as vital to our retaining the Truth on the Gospel-Age and Epiphany Tabernacles. Brother Johnson also repeatedly emphasized the Truth that revolutionism against a doctrine once received, and that persisted in, would manifest that person as a crown-loser. It was JFR's denial of tentative justification that forced him to reject the entire book of Tabernacle Shadows, a book which was the foundation rock of the Six Volumes of Studies in the Scriptures. And, while RGJ has not yet completely rejected the Tabernacle Shadows, his perversion of tentative justification forces him to pervert the teachings of that book – and that very grossly. He must now teach tentative justification in the Camp – outside the linen curtain – outside the righteousness of Christ. Of course, the errors in the case of both these crown-lost leaders have been a direct result of their “gazing.”
Let us keep clearly in mind that tentative justification in this Age is a faith justification; whereas, the justification of the Millennium will be a works justification; therefore, when Brother Johnson says in E-11:169, “There will be no more faith Justification working during the Millennium,” he was simply repeating what we have already quoted from E-15 that faith justification (tentative justification) will be a thing of the past once this Faith Age ends. A faith justification is specifically for elective purposes, despite the fact that the majority of its recipients have failed to use it for the purpose intended. Thus, he clearly states in another place, “Tentative justification ceases to operate when the Gospel Age ends.” And with this we are in full agreement.
In corroboration of the foregoing, here is something from Brother Russell himself in Reprints p. 5776 (Oct. 1, 1915):
“The difference between the justification to which the world will attain and that of the Church now, is that with the Church it is a justification by faith, a reckoned justification, attained instantly, by the imputation of the merit of Christ; while the justification of the world will be by works – it will be a making right actually, an actual perfection.... Theirs will be a work of gradually coming to a condition of justification, of perfection of mind and body, under the cover of the New Covenant, sealed with the blood of Christ. They will be coming nearer to this perfection day by day and year by year, rising toward perfection.” (As Brother Johnson thought, this teaching we believed elemental to all faithful to the Parousia Truth, and surely would be elemental – although most fundamental – to all those who have received both Parousia and Epiphany Truth—JJH)
It will be noted from these quotations that RGJ now has THAT SERVANT contradicting himself; and he has the Epiphany Messenger contradicting That Servant a spiritual bedlam that could come only from a Levite sorely enmeshed in the clutches of Azazel – confusion, and more confusion. This would be unbelievable were we not witness to it; and it is even more astounding to observe large numbers of brethren, who were schooled in the sober teachings of the two Messengers, now being led astray on this fundamental doctrine. Confusion? Yes! A Little Babylon – and in some respects more reprehensible than Big Babylon, because of the greater light that has been theirs. But, if there be any among them who do not succumb to the error, yet tacitly agree by their silence, we are forced then to conclude that they now become a partaker of RGJ's sins. For this we quote from the Manna comments of February 4:
“Those who remain after seeing Babylon and her blasphemous doctrines in the light now shining are reckoned as endorsing the blasphemies and deserving the ‘plagues' (the pestilence that walketh in darkness—JJH) more thoroughly – as much or even more than the ‘tare’ class of Babylonians, because they have greater light.-
“The prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests bear rule by their means; and my people love to have it so: and what will ye do in the end thereof?” (Jer. 5:31)
But even of those young in the Truth, there should be little difficulty in understanding this matter if we keep in mind that “It is God that justifies” (Rom. 3:30; 8:33); and His actions are never without definite purpose. The justification of this faith Age does not actually make one right; it reckons him right. And this reckoned righteousness is given for a specific purpose; namely, to enable such to come through Jesus to gain the elective salvation that now prevails. But none of this process will operate in the next Age; the “day” of sacrifice will then be past; and the justification of that Age will be the direct result of the sacrifice of this Age – the two inseparably linked, but with decidedly different purposes in the final accounting. Thus, it is as much spiritual bedlam to teach a tentative (faith) justification for the Millennium as it would be now to teach an actual physical “works” justification for this faith Age.
Of course, we should not overlook the fact that for some years after Brother Johnson's death RGJ was often quoting from Volume E-4 that tentative justification continues from Abel until restitution begins. This he did to justify tentative justification for his Campers, because, said he, the gate to the Court was closed at 1954; but, if tentative justification is to continue until restitution begins, then it must self-evidently be in the Camp. But our clear refutation of his errors has now forced him to abandon that position; thus, he is now teaching tentative justification throughout the Millennium. Therefore, with him, it is not now tentative justification from Abel until restitution begins, but until restitution ends – or at the beginning of the Little Season. Of course, all this confusion is the direct result of his “strange fire” (false doctrine of Campers Consecrated) – “gazing.” We presume he does have tentative justification “lapsing” in the Little Season!
The last two Messengers were brilliant and faithful, but they were not infallible – they did make some mistakes – “for the trial of your faith.” This we do not say flippantly or disrespectfully. But it borders on the paradoxical that of the few mistakes they did make in the great system of intricate Truth they gave us, these two crown-lost leaders (JFR and RGJ) should fasten upon the few mistakes they made to build up their system of error. Brother Russell mistakenly expected the beginning of total turmoil in 1914, with the establishment of the Kingdom perhaps by 1915. Of course, this did not occur; but JFR proceeded just as though it did, and declared the New Covenant in operation by 1918. This he did to make way for his non-existent Jonadabs – children of the New Covenant. We believe it requires little argument that the Plowman did overtake the Reaper in 1914 – the night came wherein no man could work – it brought the end to the reaping feature of the Harvest work in each country as the world war involved that country. Thus, Brother Russell had much of Truth intermingled with his mistake about 1914, but JFR mostly ignored the Truth, grasping at the mistake to support his “gazing.”
In this respect he has been more than outdone by crown-loser RGJ on his 1954 errors. Brother Johnson's mistake on 1954 was only on the time setting; not on his teachings, which were in complete harmony with Parousia Truth. At 1954-56 the total turmoil had not even begun – the Treader of Grapes did not overtake him that soweth seed; Rev. 22:11 did not see fulfillment on that date. Yet RGJ proceeds just as though it did – blindly ignoring the self-evident mistake in the time setting in order to produce his non-existent class of Campers Consecrated – just as the Witnesses continue with the error of JFR on their Large Multitude (Jonadabs). Be it remembered that Brother Johnson expected total turmoil by 1954-56; and it was on this that he based his fulfillment of Rev. 22:11. But time itself clearly declares that his expectations were wrong – that those expectations have not yet materialized some fourteen years later; yet RGJ proceeds just as though they had – just as did JFR in 1918 with his New Covenant. And in the face of this he repeatedly cites page 114 of Volume 10 as his “proof,” stressing this again at the Chicago Convention. That page clearly states that, when Rev. 22:11 would apply, “no more persons will enter the tentatively-justified state.” But RGJ offers this reference to “prove” his teaching (his error). Therefore, we quote once more Brother Johnson's expression concerning such “doubleminded” would-be “mouthpieces” of the Lord:
“Why do they so often quote passages to prove points positively disproven by those very passages? Is it not because they are in Azazel’s hands (as we have repeatedly declared respecting RGJ—JJH), and are thus blinded by him, and at his direction palm off his errors on the dear unsuspecting sheep of God's flock?”
In conclusion, we propound a few questions: (1) Does RGJ now claim that Brother Johnson was unclear and confused on tentative justification – that he perverted Brother Russell's teachings thereon by positively declaring there would be no tentative justification after the Gospel Age ends? (2) Does he thus discount all the Epiphany Messenger produced on tentative justification, and his successful refutation of JFR's errors thereon – and his non-existent class? (3) Is RGJ now contending that he himself is the one who is faithful to the teachings of That Servant, and that Brother Johnson was the one who revolutionized against those teachings? If he (RGJ) continues to teach what he stressed on tentative justification in Chicago, then his answer must self-evidently be Yes; and all who agree with him must be forced to the conclusion that Brother Johnson was not what he claimed – was not the Epiphany Messenger, and was not the last Star Member: Instead of clarifying and elaborating on the Parousia Truths, he perverted them – as all crown-losers during the Age have done with the truths entrusted to them.
LETTERS OF GENERAL INTEREST
Epiphany Bible Students Ass'n
Dear Sirs: I got a copy of your paper the other day and was very much impressed with your article about Martin Luther. I am the Editor of a denominational magazine. I would like very much to get on your mailing list. Is there a charge?
Sincerely -------- State Evangelist (NORTH CAR.)
My dear Brother Hoefle: Grace and peace be multiplied!
This is to let you know we went to fellowship with Sister ------- and found her quite bright – walking about the house.....
We kept Brothers Russell and Johnson's memorial with her and we were greatly blessed. I gave her your letter and she asked me to relay to you her great appreciation that your letter brought much encouragement and happiness. She is determined to allow nothing to slacken her journey in the narrow way ....
The brethren here are all amid their various experiences in keeping up the “good fight.” Brother..... is somewhat better. He was able to be with us on Sunday. Warm Christian love to you and all the dear ones.
Yours by His Grace --------- (JAMAICA)
Dear Brother Hoefle: Greeting in the dear Master's Name! Hymn #228. Rejoice, and again I say Rejoice! Ardent Christian love unto the brethren. May I again ask you to forward tracts... My supply is very low... I have distributed The Great Reformer to members of the Lutheran Church. I have some of them left, but will need some of all the other tracts. Thank you!
And now with hearty Christian love.... Sincerely, Brother -------- (NEW JERSEY)
Dear Sirs: Would you please forward to me the entire set of “The Wonderful Bible Keys.” Please mail to..........
This is an overseas address, so if there is any extra charge for postage, please bill me.
Thank you! -------- (CALIFORNIA)