My dear Brethren: Grace and peace through our Beloved Master!
In our February 1 writing an this subject we offered copious quotations from the Star Members in support of our contention that the 1,000‑year reign of Christ and the Saints could not, and did not begin until 1914. That article has never been answered in the Present Truth; and it comes now to our notice that R. G. Jolly is again resorting to his choice secret weapon – the “whispering campaign.” He recently wrote a letter to a Sister saying he has not anewered our February 1 paper because we have kept silent on Rev. 20:2‑7. For one who has kept silent on so many things himself, the weakness of this excuse should need no detailed comment here. As we said on February 1, his silence on our challenge of his “faulty disc” would have justified our complete silence until he replied to that; but we went ahead anyway with further clarification of the subject – having regard for the Truth primarily, and overlooking such reprehensible ethics. But once again do we challenge his explanation of the “faulty disc.”
However, we do admit to silence on Rev. 20:2‑7 – and with definite purpose. We have been trying to determine, if possible, how dull his spiritual perception has become since he was abandoned to Azazel on October 22, 1950. It is certainly not our mission in life to destroy men's lives, so under no circumstances would we wish to catalog unjustly any one as a part of the Epiphany Jambres. But, when we see a once highly respected teacher of Present Truth ignoring the elementary principles of Scriptural exegesis, it does indeed give no small cause for wonder. After detailedly adhering to the elementary principles of Scriptural analysis ourselves, it would seem that should have had a sobering and cleansing effect on R. G. Jolly. Could be, of course, that it did register, and that is the real reason for his silence on our February 1 article. On this we can only guess. The three primary rules for true Scripture interpretation are:
(1) The interpretation must be in harmony with the text itself;
(2) It must be in harmony with all other Bible texts;
(3) Use the Bible as a book of texts – Not as a textbook.
R. G. Jolly's explanation of Rev. 20:2‑7 violates all three of the above primary requirements. Treating first Rule No. 2 above, his interpretation is pointedly out of harmony with Matt. 25:31‑46. In view of the detailed comments we have offered on this Scripture, it would seem that even one befuddled by Azazel should have grasped the implications. Whenever any interpretation of two Scriptures makes them contradict each other, there is present at least one of three considerations: Part or all of the text is spurious; the translation is at fault; or the interpretation itself is wrong. Now, there is nothing to indicate that Rev. 20:7 is spurious, or improperly translated. This leaves for it only the third point – R. G. Jolly's interpretation is wrong! Even he should have been sobered by the detailed writings we presented on the subject – though we did not at any time specifically mention the three primary rules set out above. Specifically was this detail given on page 4 of our October 1, 1956 treatise. Then, on page 2 of our December 8, 1956 article we quoted this from Brother Johnson re 1 Cor. 15:24:
“What is meant by all rule, and all authority and power? We answer every vestige of Satan's governing, of Satan's claim of right, and of Satan's might; all of this must be destroyed utterly and forever, and this will be done at the end of the Little Season.” (NOT AT 2874)
This quotation carries identically the same thought as is found in E‑17‑124 (bottom), with the language changed just enough that it will take a magician of very superior skill to juggle it with a “faulty” disc. If R. G. Jolly is right in his contention of a “faulty” disc as authority to change E‑17‑124, then his “correction” is a direct contradiction of Brother Johnson's statement we quoted an December 8, and which is repeated here. Again an page 4 of our February 1, 1957 presentation we quoted this from Vol‑ E‑17‑196:
“In Matt. 25:31‑46 (the parable of the Sheep & Goats) there is given a brief description of the results of the Judgment process. V. 31 shows our lord's Second Advent with His faithful angels, or messengers; and the next verse shows how He gathers all nations before His MILLENNIAL THRONE, making them subject to Him as THEIR KING.”
Now we shall proceed to show that R. G. Jolly's interpretation of Rev. 20:2‑7 is not in harmony with the text itself. He admits Satan's binding began in 1874; he also admits that the reign of Christ and the Saints could not in any sense begin before 1878. Therefore, his emphasized “the” thousand years is only 996½ years; but this seems to make no difference to him. Here is a fine illustration of consistency in reverse from one who expended many hundreds of words to prove a one‑day discrepancy in the false 35 year parallels. The flaw in his interpretation of the 1,000‑year reign is so readily apparent that it seems unthinkable that we should have to point it out at all. Also, this false interpretation is directly contradicted by Brother Johnson in the November 15, 1949 Herald, and in E‑5‑422:
“The Millennial Age has several beginnings – 1874, 1878, 1881, 1914.. otherwise, we could not claim for Christ and the Church a full thousand years' reign.”
R. G. Jolly tries to get around this by contending “the part must here be taken for the whole” – although that elastic idea still leaves him 3½ years short on his “the” thousand years. In this connection, Brother Russell said in April, 1911 (Tower Reprints 4799) that the Kingdom was not then set up; whereas, he said in Feb. 1915 (Reprints 5632) that the Kingdom of God is set up. This is in harmony with his statement in Questions, answer to Question 3, p. 427, that the “power to reign” (the crown in 1914, as is clearly explained in Vol. P‑2‑75 (bottom), 77 (middle), 78, 79, 80 and 81‑‑JJH) was the Kingdom – Not the glorification.
His whole difficulty stems from his attempt to use the Bible as a textbook, instead of a book of texts. And we all know there was a time he knew better than this! It should be evident by now that the binding and the reigning are each one thousand years; and it is just as evident they do not have the same beginning, so they cannot have the same ending – although they do run concurrently for most of the time. And a 3½ year divergence is just as quickly to be rejected as would an error of thirty‑five years, or one hundred years. It is not the reigning and the loosing that should be paired here; it is the binding and the loosing. Therefore, verses 7‑8 should be transposed immediately after verse 3 – and all the difficulties will vanish. This is Brother Johnson's thought here, too. And it is an excellent example of a “little here, a little there” – the same as Joel 2:28, 29, which cannot be understood if we read it as a textbook. The Bible is more mixed up than a Chinese puzzle – as Brother Johnson reverently declared; and the book of Revelation is an outstanding example. It has brought only confusion to all who attempted to unlock it before the “due time.”
The 2520‑year parallel and the 3520‑year parallel substantiate our position; but R. G. Jolly's interpretation does violence to the 2520‑year parallel, and voids completely the 3520‑year parallel – just as his soulmates in the P.B.I. did with many parallels in their attempted 19‑year “correction” of the chronology. The 2520‑year parallel starts with the end of Adam's Day; and the first half concludes in 607 B.C., with the second half ending in 1914. As we pointed out on page 3 of our February 1, 1957 writing, the “crown” represents the power or authority to reign. There are two kinds of parallels – related and contrasted; and the 2520‑year parallel is an example of a contrasted parallel. In Ezek. 21:25‑27 the judgment was pronounced: “And thou, profane wicked prince (Zedekiah)... take off the crown.” It will be noted he was not commanded to lay down the “scepter” (the right to reign), because the promise was sure that “the scepter shall not depart from Judah until Shiloh come” (Gen. 49:10). But Zedekiah did lose the crown – the authority to reign. At His resurrection our lord received the scepter; but He did not then receive the crown in its full sense, because the Gentiles were to have their day until the second half of the parallel had run its course – Namely, to 1914. Thus, we contend that Christ and the Saints could not begin to reign prior to 1914, because they did not possess the crown in its full sense until then. Thus, the parallel in contrast: At 607 B. C. the profane wicked prince forced to remove the crowm; at 1914 the Righteous Prince graciously invited to put on the crown to evict the Gentiles whose times had run their full course.
The 3520‑year parallel has its start at the beginning of Adam's Day, the first half ending in 607 B. C. – when the profane wicked prince was forced to remove the crown. The second half ends in 2914 (3520 minus 606), when the Righteous Prince takes off the crown – thus making way for the Sheep to put on the crown – every man his own king: “The kings of the earth (the faithful restitutionists) bring their glory into the heavenly city.” (Rev. 21:24,26)‑ Vol. E‑11‑290 (top). Note also the Berean Comments an Ezekiel 21:25.
Let us now consider the purpose of the Christ's reign. Is it not “the restitution of all things”? And what is to be restored? Why, it is “that which was lost” (Luke 19:10). We perceive four things were lost: God's favor was lost; Paradise was lost; Dominion was lost; Life was lost – and that in the order mentioned. It should not require argument that the peace and quiet of Paradise in its pristine purity cannot again be restored until all evildoers and all evil things are annihilated; and this contention is corroborated in E‑17‑414 (bottom):
“By the time the Millennium and its subsequent `Little Season' will have fully ended, God through the Christ (Head and Body)... will have blessed all the willing and obedient of mankind with restitution.”
Then will be fulfilled Rev. 22:5: “There shall be no night there” – fter the Little Season's night has been dispelled by Paradise restored. Then – nd not until then will the reign of the Christ have accomplished the “restitution of all things.” Nor can this possibly be effected by 2874; therefore, the reign of the Christ cannot be the same thousand years as Satan's binding.
We believe our presentation offers a harmonious whole, with all pertinent Scripture properly applied. If R. G. Jolly cannot do the same with his interpretation, then we call upon him to correct his errors here, as well as his sins of teaching and practise in so many other places, in order that he may properly present “an offering in righteousness” unto the Lord. His “whisperings” in private simply accentuate his uncleansed condition – a weakess of which Brother Johnson accused him, and of which he manifestly has not yet rid himself. And we do now especially entreat him once more to undo the sin he has perpetrated when he instructed his readers to write that error into Brother Johnson's statement in E‑17‑124 under guise of a “faulty disc” – or to harmonize his “correction” with the quotation we have offered on page 2 of this writing!
And may the blessing that maketh rich abide with all who read in a “good and honest heart.”
Sincerely your brother,
John J. Hoefle, Pilgram
Question of General Interest
Question: – Are you out of harmony with the teachings of the Star Members on the linen garments of sacrifice and the robes of Glory and Beauty?
Answer: – No, we are not. We were indeed remiss in our comment about it last December in that we did not elaborate. As Brother Russell came to see, the Atonement Day ceremony types the entire Gospel and Millennial Ages; and the atoning features of the antitypical Gospel‑Age sacrificing cannot be considered to end fully until the last Great Company has left the earth. While these are not a part of the Sin‑Offering, they do atone for the wilful sins of Christendom – just as “that generation” of Jesus' First Advent atoned for Israel's wilful sins against the Law.
As to the Saints, there are two viewpoints to be considered in their change from linen garments of sacrifice. Rev. 14:13 tells us they “rest from their labors” at their resurrection to the Divine Nature; thus, their sacrificing ceases then as individuals. Note Brother Johnson's comment along this line in E‑4‑156 (6) to 159 (8). On page 159 there is this statement: “The sacrificial robes (linen garments) represent the Church's condition during her sacrificing time” – which statement is taken from Brother Russell's comment in 1910 Tower, p. 136. There is more on this in E‑17‑413 (bottom): “In the sacrificing, Gospel‑Age condition ... as typed in Aaron in his linen garments; secondly, in their glorified condition...typed in Aaron in his garments of glory and beauty.”
While the Saints cease their sacrificing as individuals when they “rest from their labors”, the World's High Priest does not complete the Gospel‑Age feature of the atoning work until the Great Company is fully dealt with; and from this standpoint they must be viewed in the linen garments until the last Great Company has left the earth.
R. G. Jolly has raised quite some fuss about our December 1, 1956 comment on this matter, complaining about our silence on it, since he offered his partial comment about it in the January Present Truth. But – in true character – he says nothing about his own silence on the real point we were discussing last December – Namely, the antitype of Lev. 16:23‑24 – wherein the high priest is depicted as standing naked in the court after he removed his linen garments. As we pointed out, once the last Great Company is gone, and the linen garments are removed – as viewed from every standpoint – the glorified World's High Priest will still not be authorized to don the garments of glory and beauty; because putting on those garments means the start of the resurrection process of the Basileia. The length of time, which at this time is uncertain, consumed between complete removal of the linen garments (completion of the atoning work) and putting on the garments of glory and beauty is the antitype of the high priest standing naked in the court after removal of his linen garments of sacrifice.
If R. G. Jolly can offer nothing better than a "whispering campaign” against the foregoing, then let him forever hold his peace – and especially let him desist from his “whispering campaign” that we are “out of harmony with Brother Russell and Brother Johnson” on the matter of the linen garments. But if he makes public answer in the Present Truth, let him state clearly whether or not he thinks the “standing naked” has application to any period or circumstance here on earth – as applicable to the Saints.