My dear Brethren: – Grace and peace through our Beloved Master!
Questions have come to us from time to time with respect to the status of Youthful Worthies that have been misled by the date 1954, and to new ones also being misled by it through the Jolly-Krewson twosome. In an effort to clarify further this serious situation we quote once more from E:10-672 (published in 1941), where Brother Johnson says, "non-Truth .... Youthful Worthy brethren, and new ones not yet consecrated are to be won for the Truth, some of whom will be won before Babylon is destroyed and others of them afterward." If this compelling statement is accepted, it is in itself enough to annihilate completely the doctrine of Campers Consecrated or Quasi-elect Consecrated, and brand it for the "strange fire" (false doctrine) that it is.
But we shall elaborate further in an effort to make this matter clear beyond fear of further contradiction. We are told in 1 Kings 6 that Solomon built the house of the Lord, and "in the eleventh year (of his reign) the house was finished." (v. 38) Brother Johnson has interpreted the building of the House of the Lord for Epiphany purposes as “Arranging God's people in their separate classes and in their Epiphany work." Certainly, we are still in the Epiphany; and if the Epiphany Solomon (Brother Johnson) was to "finish the house," it would mean he had clearly seen and classified all the Epiphany elect classes before his death. All of us know full well that Campers Consecrated was not one of the classes he defined, because he clearly taught that the Epiphany Camp in the finished picture would contain the believing, but unconsecrated, Jews and Gentiles.
In further support of our contention that Campers Consecrated is "strange fire" ''false doctrine) we cite E:11-495 (bottom): "None of these brothers were the first to see new doctrines, which under Jesus is the exclusive privilege of the star-members." Certainly, Campers Consecrated is a new doctrine; no one ever heard of it before the Jolly-Krewson twosome foisted it upon the LHMM adherents after Brother Johnson's death: so we repeat our contention in the paragraph above: If this compelling statement by Brother Johnson is accepted, it is in itself enough to annihilate completely the new doctrine of Campers Consecrated, and to brand it as a piece of Levitical impudence.
There is a fourth line of thought which militates against this false doctrine, the same being found in the erection of the Gospel Age, the Epiphany and the Millennial Tabernacles. At Pentecost when the first Gospel-Age new creatures (Jesus excepted) appeared, the entire Church of the Gospel Age was there tentatively and representatively set up. (See E-8-174) When that event occurred, another event occurred in that same instantaneous flash of time – Namely, the reception of any more Ancient Worthies was immediately and forever ended; no more human beings could ever again join that select company. They must then join the Christ Company, or remain on the "broad road" until another "day" arrived. While it is true the last of the Ancient Worthies in the person of John the Baptist walked the road of sacrifice unto death concurrently with Jesus, he had come into that Company six months before Jesus arrived at Jordan; but after Jordan his disciples in ever-increasing numbers left him to follow Jesus. "All the prophets instructed till John." (Matt. 11:13-Dia.) "He must increase, but I must decrease." (John 3:30) Thus, any attempt of John's disciples to continue among the prophets would avail them just nothing. An identical situation developed at Sept. 16, 1914, when the last member of the Christ Company was garnered into the Gospel-Age Harvest, thus setting up tentatively and individually the Gospel-Age Tabernacle... Any newcomers into the Household of Faith who would persist after that time to be of the High Calling would find themselves in exactly the same position of the disciples of John who may have insisted on continuing in the Jewish-Age prophets – they would be definitely out of order. And, seeing the exacting precision with which the Jewish-Age and Gospel-Age elective arrangements have been consummated, we are logically justified in concluding that the ending of the Epiphany Tabernacle and setting up of the Millennial Tabernacles would follow the same pattern; and Brother Johnson shows from his words quoted above that this would not occur until sometime after Armageddon. Therefore, it is little wonder the Jolly-Krewson twosome has not been able to produce a single Scripture anywhere to support their "strange fire." This is a little more raw, even, than the aberrations of That Evil Servant, who did produce some semblance of a Scripture on which to hang his figurative hat. Here is a 'spiritual hybrid' without father or mother, a 'new creation' as weird as it is new, the first ever to be produced without a mother – all the elect classes having been decidedly mothered by the precious promises of the Scriptures, with no such promises, prophecies or types being addressed to Epiphany Campers Consecrated, and not a hint of the same in any of the writings of the last two Star Members. None of us who had sat at the feet of Brother Johnson for any period of time before his death would have believed such a situation possible ten years ago. Without the nurturing of a mother (feeding on the promises) no Gospel-Age consecrators could walk "the" or "a" narrow way. The only promises the "cousins" can offer for their covenant by sacrifice are those applicable to ALL Restitutionists – who do not now sacrifice.
All of the foregoing poises some serious questions: First, what about those Youthful Worthies who have so flagrantly forsaken the clear teachings of the last Star Member to follow now in the deception of uncleansed Levites? We answer that 1954 was a crucial date for them to the extent that they have fallen under the errors presented then and since. Those who recover themselves will, we believe, maintain their Youthful Worthy standing, with many others probably losing their standing completely. It needs no argument from us that a well-grounded humility is required to admit mistakes for which we have strenuously striven. The Epiphany is a time for "making manifest the counsels of hearts," and it would be folly indeed to think those in the LHMM would escape this Epiphany manifestation.
The second question now in order is what hope to present to new consecrators: Should we encourage such with Youthful Worthy prospects as their hope? We would not try to improve upon Brother Johnson's answer to this very question many years ago, as recorded in E-4-420 (19): "We should now encourage believers to consecrate, because consecration is always in order. We should, however, not now encourage any one to consecrate in hope of the High Calling. Nor should we now encourage people to consecrate offering them as the incentive a reward for so doing, because consecration should never be made to get a reward. It should be out of faith in the Lord's word, out of grateful love for past mercies and out of appreciative love for God's good character .... We are not to encourage them to enter into business dealings with God. We are to encourage them to enter into consecration dealings with God. Yes, we should zealously encourage believers now to consecrate to God in this true spirit."
The Question set out above, with its answer, is probably more important to us now than it was at the time Brother Johnson answered it. He wrote it at the time to refute mainly the Society, Dawn and PBI errorists, who denied such a class, while proclaiming their own errors on their specific class of spiritual hybrids; but since his death there has arisen a new set of errorists proclaiming a new class of hybrids-namely, Consecrated Epiphany Campers and Quasi-elect Consecrated, classes which neither Brother Russell nor Brother Johnson even so much as hinted would appear toward the end of the Epiphany. Therefore, we now give a hearty Amen to Brother Johnson's answer as being just as pertinent now as it was when he wrote it; and we advise our readers to carry on with it in the same spirit and the same zeal as was done when he was still with us. Therefore, we urge upon our readers a careful study of the Question on page 420, with the full answer presented there.
Also, a word is in order here about "consecration being always in order." Jesus Himself said, "No man cometh unto me, except the Father which sent me draw him"; and it should be kept clearly in mind that there are two parts to every consecration – that is, the presentation by the one wishing to consecrate, and the acceptance of that offering by our Lord. We cite the case of Cornelius – "a devout man, and one that feared God with all his house .... and prayed to God alway." It is certainly no exaggeration of truth to conclude that Cornelius was the same man, with the same heart condition, for a matter of days, at least (and probably for months, maybe even years, as it is Brother Russell's observation that he was probably the centurion whose servant Christ healed, and possibly the one who supervised the crucifixion of Jesus – See Berean Comment on Acts 10:1 and Matt. 27:54), before his offering was accepted and on him "was poured out the gift of the Holy Spirit." Yet he could not come into the Christ Company until the "due time"! And just as fixedly, none can come into the Millennial arrangement on the Highway of Holiness until the "due time." In the case of Cornelius a compelling demonstration was given – crystal clear to all those present – that the "due time" had arrived to admit Gentiles into the Christ Company. Let those contending for Campers Consecrated show even the remotest external indication of any kind whatever that any change of procedure occurred at 1954. When the "due time" comes for such a change, we may be sure God's faithful people will not be left wondering and doubting – any more than was true when the narrow way was opened for the Gentiles,
Tentative Justification for Gospel-Age elective processes is exclusively a Gospel-Age condition; and both Messengers said it would cease to operate when the Gospel Age ceases to operate. Nor did either of them ever say it would end before the Gospel Age ceases. All the evidence shows we are still in the Gospel Age; therefore, Tentative Justification is still operating, and that for elective purposes as a faith justification. Those who do not use it will lose it in the end of the Age, being remanded to the Epiphany Camp, as Brother Johnson has repeatedly stated. Such of these as adhere to righteousness and continue to accept Jesus as their Savior will be among the quasi-elect of the Millennial Kingdom, making their consecration for admission to the Highway of Holiness – and not before. Let those, then who wish to offer the "strange fire" (false doctrine) of a non-existent Consecrated Campers Class go their way. If they persist therein, those of the Great Company who do so will lose life completely; and the Youthful Worthies who persist therein will fully lose their Class standing. Let each determine for himself what his course shall be.
Sincerely your Brother,
John J. Hoefle
QUESTIONS OF GENERAL INTEREST
QUESTION: – In your analysis of Sectarianism, did you mean that all in Big and Little Babylon are sectarian?
ANSWER: – Most certainly not! There are individuals everywhere who are not sectarian, although in sectarian groups – just as there have been individuals in Present Truth all during Laodicea who have been rabidly sectarian, despite the faithful teachings and continued warnings of the two Messengers against this evil. However, just accepting the opinions of the two Messengers in preference to our own would not constitute any one a sectarian. Our attitude in this matter, as was the case with Brother Johnson in respect to the opinions of Brother Russell, is to accept the opinions of the last two Star Members in preference to our own, except where those opinions have been proven pointedly wrong by clear Scriptures, or where time has demonstrated that those opinions could not possibly be correct – as, for instance, some of Brother Russell's opinions respecting 1914, and some of Brother Johnson's opinions respecting 1954, etc.
Nor should we consider it our duty to harass those set in prominent position by the Lord when we differ with them in their opinions (although the differing with their opinions is certainly our privilege, and in some instances may be more nearly correct than theirs). We should realize that whatever mistakes they may make, and have made, will be overruled by the Lord "for good" – for their good as well as for the best interests of all the Lord's people. If they are faithful under-Shepherds, we should realize that even their mistakes are overruled for good, for the 'trial of your faith' in many instances. We are indeed to 'contend for the faith once delivered to the saints' (their faithful teachings based upon Scripture), but we are not to contend combatively for their opinions, nor our own – nor are we to be contentious regarding differences of opinions which are impossible of present positive proof. One might say that some of the brethren who had a different opinion from Brother Russell and Brother Johnson, should have 'contended' over their faulty expectations. But we don't believe this would have been the proper course (even though if given an opportunity they could have expressed their opinions vs. the Star Members to them). Many of the Star Members have made mistakes regarding time features, but most of us realize (especially the faithful Epiphany-enlightened brethren), too, that these mistakes were indeed overruled for our good. Some have said it was sectarian to accept Bro. Johnson's expectations and opinions based on the parallels regarding the Epiphany period, etc., at the time he gave such thoughts. But such is not the case, although when time has proved them to be wrong we are not to hold on to those opinions and try to force features into them that aren't there. It is as true today as ever that hindsight is better than foresight; and mistakes of time always seem so self-evident when time itself makes those mistakes manifest. The Epiphany and the Time of Trouble being one and the same is a Scriptural teaching, and we should not abandon this fundamental teaching, or any other basic Epiphany teaching, just because Brother Johnson expected the parallels to continue to work, which, of course, ceased at his death in 1950. If we are to forsake the Mouthpieces of God because of their expectations and such mistakes, then we would have to forsake many – such as Brother Hiller, Brother Russell, Brother Johnson, et al.
Nor do we consider it sectarianism for any of the Lord's people to accept the opinions of those whom the Lord specially uses in preference to their own opinions, although their own thoughts may subsequently prove to be more nearly correct. We should be free to express an opinion as against any one's, whether the Lord's Mouthpiece or otherwise, although we certainly shouldn't contend for our opinions as though we were 'contending for the faith' once delivered to the Saints. Naturally, the Lord's Mouthpieces, if not fully convinced by the logic against their opinions, would be inclined to hold to their own opinions until proved wrong. No faithful brethren would reason otherwise.
We all know there were some immaturities and errors in the Parousia Vol. 4, which was widely distributed as a witness work to the world, but we also know the Lord overruled this matter, even the immaturities and errors "for good" – especially for the Lord's people, because the Truths in that book are mainly phenomenally correct, considering that it was written about 75 years ago.
One might ask – Why can't the Great Company leaders' mistakes be 'overruled for good' in the same way? The difference is this: God did not authorize them to do more than be faithful to their stewardship Truths (which they have always perverted, while performing valiant service with those features they did not pervert). He did not authorize them to "preach" any prophecy or doctrine which they themselves felt they received directly from the Lord (the Lord does not give advancing Truth, or new doctrines to the Great Company leaders except through His Star Members). The Lord did not approve their efforts in this respect; their teachings of false doctrines would be "strange fire." But in the case of the Star Members, He did indeed give them the 'meat in due season' to disperse to the Household; and in this they have taught certain opinions and expectations which had no Scriptural proof. Should we fault them for that? No, indeed! As they were faithfully seeking to fulfill their office functions their various human qualities oftentimes were manifested in their writings. They were not infallible men; they did not write, as did the Apostles, by inspiration in the sense that their writings were perfect. But their teachings were perfect in that they did teach and preach all the Lord gave them to do.
So there is a difference, and a great difference, in the leaders who have been given doctrines by the Star Members as their stewardship, and the Star Members who were given the enlightenment as 'meat in due season' for the Household – directly from the Lord. The Epiphany-enlightened brethren are fully aware of this difference. We are not to fault the Star Members for their human frailties, nor are we to fault the Great Company leaders for their inherited human frailties; however, we are to fault the Great Company leaders for their power-grasping efforts and tendencies, and such human frailties as they willfully allow to control them. These are traits not found in the faithful Star Members and crown-retainers (the Little Flock): None of them were power-graspers, and some of them were very obscure so far as concerned notice from this world (although all 49 Star Members were very great in intellect and in the sight of God).
In connection with individuals among the groups of Little Babylon, we all know that there have been Saints among them during the Epiphany. They are not sectarian in spirit, of course, even though in the midst of a sectarian system. This was true of the saints all during the Gospel Age, even though affiliated with the various sects, they themselves were not sectarian in spirit (although in conduct perhaps they might have appeared so, having been injected with many sectarian errors). And we believe this applies to the Youthful Worthies in Little and Big Babylon – many of them may not be sectarian in spirit, although contaminated with sectarian errors. Some of them will be won for the Truth before Babylon falls and some after; and the fully faithful among them will conquer sectarianism in themselves, as Brother Johnson has shown from the type of Oreb and Zeeb, explained in E-5:226-228.
QUESTION: – On page 55 of the July 1960 Bible Standard Brother Jolly says the Great Company are "the sons of God." Is this correct?
ANSWER: – First of all it should be kept in mind that most of the article that now prompts your question is from the writings of Brother Russell. The last paragraph on page 54, col. 1, is almost verbatim the July 12 Manna comment on John 8:36. This certainly has our hearty approval. Had he confined himself to the writings of the Star Members, he would not have exposed himself to the many criticisms that have been directed at him.
However, part of what appears on page 55 is so garbled that it would be highly misleading to new readers. Half truths are often more misleading than whole errors and R. G. Jolly is most prone to this fault almost any time he attempts to express any of his own opinions. For sometime now he has been putting himself in the "us," the "we," the "salt," the "light," the Fully Faithful, etc., so it should be no surprise to see him moving himself right into the Gospel-Age sons. Rom. 8:16 says, "We are the children of God," and v. 17 leaves not the slightest doubt that this refers exclusively to the Saints, and does not include the Great Company – "If children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ."
All Gospel-Age new creatures were at the outset "sons of God"; but those of them who eventually lost their saintly standing then assumed an entirely different status. Note Brother Johnson's comments in E4–98: "We have previously pointed out that the Little Flock is sometimes typed by a male child, and the Great Company by a female child, when the two classes are contrasted; even as Little Flock members are spoken of as Jehovah's sons (John 1:12; 1 John 1:1,2), while Great Company members are spoken of as Jehovah's daughters and as His maidservants (2 Cor. 6:18; Joel 2:29)". We know of no place anywhere that crown-losers are referred to in the Bible as "sons." They are often classified as "sinners," a special class of sinners apart from the general run of Adamic sinners – sinners to such a degree that their entire works are burned (as was the case with Lot), they themselves escaping only with their lives. It should be kept in mind that R. G. Jolly is the only leader of any of the sects in Little Babylon who openly admits he is of the Great Company; but many of his other statements confuse the situation so badly that it is only too manifest that Babel (confusion) has him sadly in its grasp. Also, at no time does the Bible describe the Saints as sinners; and Brother Russell taught it would be wrong for any Saint to pray, "Lord, be merciful to me, a sinner" – because "ye are washed; ye are sanctified" (1 Cor. 6:11 – See Berean Comment).
Lest we be misunderstood, both Brother Russell and Brother Johnson teach that the Great Company will eventually be among the "sons of God" – just as every human being who survives the Little Season will also be a son of God, just as ''Adam was the son of God;" but it certainly is not a correct statement to teach this in the present tense of manifested Great Company members. In the Leviticus 12 type the Great Company is definitely classified as the female child "in the Parousia and in the Epiphany" (See E:4-98). And, since we are still in the Epiphany, this is the correct present classification for them, regardless of what may become of them in the future. As we have so often pointed out in our writings, we need never expect a clear and comprehensive exposition on any subject from R. G. Jolly so long as he remains in his present uncleansed condition.
LETTERS OF GENERAL INTEREST
Epiphany Bible Students Ass'n –
I am interested in securing copies of the following:
The Resurrection of the Dead
The Three Babylons
What is the Soul
Sincerely --------- Mass.
Dear Brother Hoefle:
I was so glad to hear from you and to get the papers. Please forgive me for not writing sooner. I think of you and pray for you both as I know how hard it is to give of your time, money and study. But I know it is the love of the Lord and the brethren – that you are faithful and loving to all of us. I am such a poor writer...... I think of you and Sister and love you all. Let me hear from you. I haven't heard anything from --------- I wish the enclosed could be more to help..
God bless you and pray for me..
Christian love --------- N. J.
Dear Brother Hoefle: – Greetings in His dear name. Grace and Peace!
Please send me the "Third Watch" of January 1, 1957. I only have the 1957 papers from July 1 to Dec. 1, 1957. If you have them, will you please send them to me? Thank you! ... I noted what you have to say about the name Jehovah. Is it wrong to use that name? Brother Russell in Parousia Vol. 5, 40-41 says name applied to ''Father of glory" – see pp. 72-65. I know Jehovah's Witnesses is a sect and out of Harmony with the Truth. Enclosed is $ ... for the Lord's work.
Yours by His Grace, --------- Conn.