Search This Blog

Monday, January 18, 2010

Do Jehovah's Witnesses deny the Ransom?

The Bible Students teach the false view that Jehovah's Witnesses deny the Ransom. In reality, Jehovah's Witnesses do not deny the Ransom, we just reject the Bible Students understanding of it. The Bible Students teach that Jesus died "FOR" Adam, this would then cause a chain reaction that would free "ALL" of mankind. However the Bible states that Jesus died for us as individuals. All of Jehovah's Witnesses love Jesus, and yet many Bible Students hate us. The majority of Jews reject Jesus and these same Bible Students love them. Funny how that works.

2 Peter 2:21-25 (ASV) For hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, that ye should follow his steps: who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth: who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously: who his own self bare our sins in his body upon the tree, that we, having died unto sins, might live unto righteousness; by whose stripes ye were healed. For ye were going astray like sheep; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.

1 John 2:1-6 (ASV) My little children, these things write I unto you that ye may not sin. And if any man sin, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous: and he is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for the whole world. And hereby we know that we know him, if we keep his commandments. He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him; but whoso keepeth his word, in him verily hath the love of God been perfected. Hereby we know that we are in him: he that saith he abideth in him ought himself also to walk even as he walked.

Colossians 1:13-16 (ASV) who delivered us out of the power of darkness, and translated us into the kingdom of the Son of his love; in whom we have our redemption, the forgiveness of our sins: who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation; for in him were all things created, in the heavens and upon the earth, things visible and things invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers; all things have been created through him, and unto him;

Ephesians 1:3-8 (ASV) Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ: even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blemish before him in love: having foreordained us unto adoption as sons through Jesus Christ unto himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, to the praise of the glory of his grace, which he freely bestowed on us in the Beloved: in whom we have our redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he made to abound toward us in all wisdom and prudence,

Does not the expression “in Christ shall all be made alive” include Adam?—P. E., Maryland.

Evidently Adam stood in a different position as regards redemption from that occupied by his descendants. He had the right to life, but did not value it or appreciate it enough to hold on to it; whereas his descendants never had the right to life and needed redemption from the beginning. It should be observed that in the statement “as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive” Adam is excluded from the comparison. (1 Cor. 15:22) We could not say that Adam died in Adam. Adam was personally sentenced to death for his own willful wrongdoing, but not his offspring. Nor does the Bible anywhere say that Adam was the one ransomed to thereby automatically release all his descendants. The ransom is not given for one, but “for many” or “for all”. (Matt. 20:28; 1 Tim. 2:6) However, in 1 Corinthians, chapter 15, the apostle is discussing the resurrection of Christ’s body members. The statement that “in Christ shall all be made alive” applies to all those “which are fallen asleep in Christ” (verses 6, 18), and not to mankind in general. (See The Watchtower, April 1, 1944, ¶¶22-25.) Hence those to be thus made alive must come into relationship to Christ as Life-giver and are made members of his body. Not all men receive the benefits of Christ’s ransom, but only “all them that obey him”. The condemnation inherited from Adam is lifted from those who believe and obey Christ Jesus; it remains upon those who do not believe and obey.—John 3:18, 36; Heb. 5:9.

Questions From Readers, 1950 Watchtower, page 367, WTB&TS


The Watchtower, April 1, 1944, ¶¶22-25

Paul’s use of the expression "firstfruits of them that slept" is noteworthy. Christ Jesus once slept in death. He being the firstfruits, then those sleeping in him must be the afterfruits of the "first resurrection" class and must become living fruit unto God by being brought out of the death-sleep. Hence the spirit of God caused the apostle to write further: "For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead." (1 Cor. 15: 21) The repeated word came being inserted by the Authorized Version Bible translators, The Emphatic Diagtott reads more accurately: "For since through a man, there is death, through a man, also, there is a resurrection of the dead." Verse 22 next adds: "For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive."

Are those two verses to be taken to mean a resurrection or even an awakening out of death for all the dead? To interpret verses 21 and 22 that way would mean disregarding the Scriptures that prove that many at death have perished, because they have gone down into destruction from which no recovery is possible. Certainly the apostle Paul was not disregarding such scripture texts, many of which he himself wrote. Under the divine inspiration he would not be guilty of contradicting himself. True it is that by Adam’s sin death passed upon all men descending from him, but not "second death", which is the death of destruction in gehenna. (Rev. 20: 14; 21:8) Hence those having only the inheritance of death that was unavoidable through Adam would be redeemable or be in line for a resurrection out of death. Those whose inherited condemnation to death had been added to by willful wickedness that brings the divine judgment of destruction have more than an inheritance from the first man. They go to gehenna, and are not among ’all those that are in their graves’ and who ’shall hear the voice of the Son of God and shall come forth’ in the resurrection
time.--John 5 : 28, 29.

"In Adam all die," by reason of death’s passing from him onto all his offspring; but it is not true that all such eventually die with merely the condemnation they inherited from Adam resting upon them. The malicious, deliberately wicked and rebels against God die not merely as descendants of Adam the sinner, but also as the seed of the Serpent, the children of the wicked one Satan. Adam was not responsible for their dying as such workers of iniquity against God. Hence all such could not be included among all those who in Christ shall be made alive; for Christ’s ransom sacrifice does not cover or cancel such sin of rebellious iniquity and willful wickedness.

It is evident, therefore, that the apostle’s words at 1 Corinthians 15:21, 22 are restricted in application, and that he has in mind all those he was writing about, namely, all those "which are fallen asleep in Christ". (Verses 6, 18) Without question, these were affected by the death that came by the first man, and they all died in Adam, because by him sin entered into the world and death by sin, and all these inherited sin from him and so death and its condemnation naturally passed upon them. But as in Adam they died, so in Christ they shall all be made alive. They shall come forth from the graves "unto a resurrection of life", because of having done good in God’s sight.--Rom. 5:12; John 5: 28, 29.

Christ Jesus’ Role as Ransomer

The foregoing information lays the basis for understanding the ransom provided for humankind through God’s Son, Christ Jesus. Mankind’s need for a ransom came about through the rebellion in Eden. Adam sold himself to do evil for the selfish pleasure of keeping continued company with his wife, now a sinful transgressor, so he shared the same condemned standing with her before God. He thereby sold himself and his descendants into slavery to sin and to death, the price that God’s justice required. (Ro 5:12-19; compare Ro 7:14-25.) Having possessed human perfection, Adam lost this valuable possession for himself and all his offspring.

The Law, which had “a shadow of the good things to come,” provided for animal sacrifices as a covering for sin. This, however, was only a symbolic or token covering, since such animals were inferior to man; hence, it was “not possible for the blood of bulls and of goats [actually] to take sins away,” as the apostle points out. (Heb 10:1-4) Those pictorial animal sacrifices had to be without blemish, perfect specimens. (Le 22:21) The real ransom sacrifice, a human actually capable of removing sins, must therefore also be perfect, free from blemish. He would have to correspond to the perfect Adam and possess human perfection, if he were to pay the price of redemption that would release Adam’s offspring from the debt, disability, and enslavement into which their first father Adam had sold them. (Compare Ro 7:14; Ps 51:5.) Only thereby could he satisfy God’s perfect justice that requires like for like, a ‘soul for a soul.’—Ex 21:23-25; De 19:21.

The strictness of God’s justice made it impossible for mankind itself to provide its own redeemer. (Ps 49:6-9) However, this results in the magnifying of God’s own love and mercy in that he met his own requirements at tremendous cost to himself, giving the life of his own Son to provide the redemption price. (Ro 5:6-8) This required his Son’s becoming human to correspond to the perfect Adam. God accomplished this by transferring his Son’s life from heaven to the womb of the Jewish virgin Mary. (Lu 1:26-37; Joh 1:14) Since Jesus did not owe his life to any human father descended from the sinner Adam, and since God’s holy spirit ‘overshadowed’ Mary, evidently from the time she conceived until the time of Jesus’ birth, Jesus was born free from any inheritance of sin or imperfection, being, as it were, “an unblemished and spotless lamb,” whose blood could prove to be an acceptable sacrifice. (Lu 1:35; Joh 1:29; 1Pe 1:18, 19) He maintained that sinless state throughout his life and thus did not disqualify himself. (Heb 4:15; 7:26; 1Pe 2:22) As a ‘sharer of blood and flesh,’ he was a near kinsman of mankind and he had the thing of value, his own perfect life maintained pure through tests of integrity, with which to repurchase mankind, emancipate them.—Heb 2:14, 15.

The Christian Greek Scriptures make clear that the release from sin and death is indeed by the paying of a price. Christians are said to be “bought with a price” (1Co 6:20; 7:23), having an “owner that bought them” (2Pe 2:1), and Jesus is presented as the Lamb who ‘was slaughtered and with his blood bought persons for God out of every tribe, tongue, and nation.’ (Re 5:9) In these texts the verb a‧go‧ra′zo is used, meaning simply “buy at the market [a‧go‧ra′].” The related e‧xa‧go‧ra′zo (release by purchase) is used by Paul in showing that Christ released “by purchase those under law” through his death on the stake. (Ga 4:5; 3:13) But the thought of redemption or ransoming is more frequently and more fully expressed by the Greek ly′tron and related terms.

Ly′tron (from the verb ly′o, meaning “loose”) was especially used by Greek writers to refer to a price paid to ransom prisoners of war or to release those under bond or in slavery. (Compare Heb 11:35.) In its two Scriptural occurrences it describes Christ’s giving “his soul a ransom in exchange for many.” (Mt 20:28; Mr 10:45) The related word an‧ti′ly‧tron appears at 1 Timothy 2:6. Parkhurst’s Greek and English Lexicon to the New Testament says it means: “a ransom, price of redemption, or rather a correspondent ransom.” He quotes Hyperius as saying: “It properly signifies a price by which captives are redeemed from the enemy; and that kind of exchange in which the life of one is redeemed by the life of another.” He concludes by saying: “So Aristotle uses the verb [an‧ti‧ly‧tro′o] for redeeming life by life.” (London, 1845, p. 47) Thus Christ “gave himself a corresponding ransom for all.” (1Ti 2:5, 6) Other related words are ly‧tro′o‧mai, “loose by ransom” (Tit 2:14; 1Pe 1:18, 19), and a‧po‧ly′tro‧sis, “a releasing by ransom.” (Eph 1:7, 14; Col 1:14) The similarity of the usage of these words with that of the Hebrew terms considered is evident. They describe, not an ordinary purchase or releasing, but a redeeming or ransoming, a deliverance effected by payment of a corresponding price.

Additional Reading:

Additional Reading:

Though available to all, Christ’s ransom sacrifice is not accepted by all, and “the wrath of God remains” upon those not accepting it, as it also comes upon those who first accept and then turn away from that provision. (Joh 3:36; Heb 10:26-29; contrast Ro 5:9, 10.) They gain no deliverance from the enslavement to Kings Sin and Death. (Ro 5:21) Under the Law the deliberate murderer could not be ransomed. Adam, by his willful course, brought death on all mankind, hence was a murderer. (Ro 5:12) Thus, the sacrificed life of Jesus is not acceptable to God as a ransom for the sinner Adam.

But God is pleased to approve the application of the ransom to redeem those of Adam’s offspring who avail themselves of such a release. As Paul states, “as through the disobedience of the one man many were constituted sinners, likewise also through the obedience of the one person many will be constituted righteous.” (Ro 5:18, 19) At the time of Adam’s sin and his being sentenced to death, his offspring or race were all unborn in his loins and so all died with him. (Compare Heb 7:4-10.) Jesus as a perfect man, “the last Adam” (1Co 15:45), had a race or offspring unborn in his loins, and when he died innocently as a perfect human sacrifice this potential human race died with him. He had willingly abstained from producing a family of his own by natural procreation. Instead, Jesus uses the authority granted by Jehovah on the basis of his ransom to give life to all those who accept this provision.—1Co 15:45; compare Ro 5:15-17.

Thus, Jesus was indeed “a corresponding ransom,” not for the redemption of the one sinner, Adam, but for the redemption of all mankind descended from Adam. He repurchased them so that they could become his family, doing this by presenting the full value of his ransom sacrifice to the God of absolute justice in heaven. (Heb 9:24) He thereby gains a Bride, a heavenly congregation formed of his followers. (Compare Eph 5:23-27; Re 1:5, 6; 5:9, 10; 14:3, 4.) Messianic prophecies also show he will have “offspring” as an “Eternal Father.” (Isa 53:10-12; 9:6, 7) To be such, his ransom must embrace more than those of his “Bride.” In addition to those “bought from among mankind as firstfruits” to form that heavenly congregation, therefore, others are to benefit from his ransom sacrifice and gain everlasting life through the removal of their sins and accompanying imperfection. (Re 14:4; 1Jo 2:1, 2) Since those of the heavenly congregation serve with Christ as priests and “kings over the earth,” such other recipients of the ransom benefits must be earthly subjects of Christ’s Kingdom, and as children of an “Eternal Father” they attain everlasting life. (Re 5:10; 20:6; 21:2-4, 9, 10; 22:17; compare Ps 103:2-5.) The entire arrangement manifests Jehovah’s wisdom and his righteousness in perfectly balancing the scales of justice while showing undeserved kindness and forgiving sins.—Ro 3:21-26.

- Insight on the Scriptures, Volume II, Published by the WTB&TS

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Two Pastors Who Appreciated Russell's Writings

IN 1891, Charles Taze Russell, who did outstanding work among true Christian worshipers of Jehovah, visited Europe for the first time. According to some reports, during a stopover in Pinerolo, Italy, Russell met Professor Daniele Rivoire, a former pastor of a religious group called the Waldenses. Although Rivoire remained closely associated with the Waldenses after he left the ministry, he kept an open mind and read many publications that C. T. Russell wrote.

In 1903, Rivoire translated Russell’s book The Divine Plan of the Ages into Italian and had it printed at his own expense. This was well before an official Italian edition was published. In the book’s foreword, Rivoire wrote: “We place this first Italian edition under the Lord’s protection. May he bless it so that, in spite of its imperfections, it may contribute to magnify his most holy name and encourage his Italian-speaking children to greater devotion. May the hearts of all those who, by reading this book, appreciate the depth of riches, wisdom, and knowledge of God’s plan and love, be grateful to God himself, by whose grace publication of this work has been made possible.”

Rivoire also began translating Zion’s Watchtower and Herald of Christ’s Presence into Italian. This magazine, an early form of The Watchtower, appeared as a quarterly edition in 1903. Even though Professor Rivoire never became a Bible Student, as Jehovah’s Witnesses were then called, he showed much interest in spreading the Bible’s message as explained in the publications of the Bible Students.

“It Seemed as Though Scales Fell From My Eyes”

Another Waldensian pastor who esteemed Russell’s publications was Giuseppe Banchetti. Giuseppe’s father, who had converted from Catholicism, gave him a Waldensian education. In 1894, Giuseppe became a pastor and ministered to various Waldensian communities in Apulia and Abruzzi and on the islands of Elba and Sicily.

The authorized Italian edition of Russell’s Divine Plan of the Ages was published in 1905. Banchetti wrote an enthusiastic review of the book. It appeared in the Protestant periodical La Rivista Cristiana. “For us,” wrote Banchetti, Russell’s book “is the most illuminated and sure guide that any Christian may find to undertake a profitable and blessed study of Holy Scripture . . . As soon as I read it, it seemed as though scales fell from my eyes, that the way to God was straighter and easier. Even apparent contradictions for the most part disappeared. Doctrines once difficult appeared simple and perfectly acceptable. Things hitherto incomprehensible became clear. The admirable plan of the world’s salvation in Christ appeared before me with such awesome simplicity as to induce me to exclaim with the Apostle: O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God!”—Romans 11:33.

As observed in 1925 by Remigio Cuminetti, Banchetti showed “much sympathy” for the work of the Bible Students and was “fully convinced” of the doctrines as explained by them. In his own way, Banchetti also sought to make such doctrines known.

It is evident from Banchetti’s writings that, like Jehovah’s Witnesses, he believed that there would be an earthly resurrection, as taught in the Scriptures. He also agreed with the Bible Students when he explained that the year in which Jesus died had been fixed and revealed by God in Daniel’s prophecy of the 70 weeks. (Daniel 9:24-27) More than once, and in open disagreement with the teachings of his church, he held that the Memorial of Jesus Christ’s death should be observed just one time each year, “the exact day on which the anniversary falls.” (Luke 22:19, 20) He rejected Darwin’s theory of evolution, and he affirmed that true Christians should not engage in secular war.—Isaiah 2:4.

On one occasion, Banchetti was discussing Russell’s writings with a man named J. Campbell Wall. In answer to Wall’s criticisms, Banchetti said: “I am certain that if you read Russell’s six volumes, you would experience a vigorous and deep joy, and you would thank me with emotion. I do not parade doctrine; but I read those books eleven years ago, and I thank God every day for putting before me such light and such consolation by means of a work that is entirely and solidly founded on the Holy Scriptures.”

“Listen, Listen, Listen”

It is significant that these two Waldensian pastors—Daniele Rivoire and Giuseppe Banchetti—expressed appreciation for the way Russell explained the Bible. Banchetti wrote: “I say that none of us Evangelicals, not even our pastors or theology professors, nobody knows everything. Nay, we have many, many other things to learn. . . . [We should] . . . stay and listen, not thinking we know it all, and not rejecting what is offered for our examination. Rather, listen, listen, listen.”

Every year, thousands listen to the Kingdom message as brought to their homes by Jehovah’s Witnesses. Open-minded people everywhere who thirst for Bible truths are responding to Jesus’ invitation: “Come be my follower.”—Mark 10:17-21; Revelation 22:17.


Named after Pierre Vaudès, or Peter Waldo, a 12th-century merchant of Lyons, France. Waldo was excommunicated from the Catholic Church for his beliefs. For additional information on the Waldenses, see the article “The Waldenses—From Heresy to Protestantism” in The Watchtower of March 15, 2002.

Ref: 2002 Watchtower, 4/15, page 28 - 29, WTB&TS


Peter Waldo

Life and work

Specific details of his life are largely unknown. The sources mention that he was a merchant from Lyon. However, inspired after hearing the story of St. Alexius, in around 1160 he began living a radical Christian life and gave his real estate to his wife, and the remainder of his belongings he distributed as alms to the poor.

Waldo also began to preach and teach on the streets, based on his ideas of simplicity and poverty, notably that "No man can serve two masters, God and mammon." By 1170 he had gathered a number of followers and they started to be called the Poor of Lyon, the Poor of Lombardy, or the Poor of God. They were also referred to as the Waldensians (or Waldenses), after their leader. They were distinct from the Albigensians or Cathars.

The Waldensian movement was characterised from the beginning by lay preaching, voluntary poverty and sticking to the "Word of God", the Bible. Peter Waldo commissioned a cleric from Lyons around 1180 to translate the Bible, or parts of it, into the vernacular, the Arpitan (Franco-Provençal) language.

In 1179, Waldo and one of his disciples went to Rome. They were welcomed by Pope Alexander III, and by the Roman Curia. They had to explain their faith before a panel of three clergymen, including items which were then debated within the Church, as the universal priesthood, the gospel in the vulgar tongue, and the issue of self-imposed poverty. But Waldo and his friend were not taken seriously. The meeting therefore resolved nothing, and Waldo’s and his followers’ ideas, initially regarded with suspicion, were condemned at the Third Lateran Council in the same year, though the leaders of the movement had not been yet excommunicated.

Driven away from Lyon, Waldo and his followers settled in the high valleys of Piedmont, and in France, in the Luberon. Finally, Waldo was excommunicated by Pope Lucius III during the synod held at Verona in 1184, and the doctrine of the Poor of Lyon was again condemned by the Fourth Lateran Council in 1215, and regarded as heresy. The Roman Catholic Church began to persecute the Waldensians, and many were tried and sentenced to death in various European countries during the 12th, 13th, and 14th centuries. The sect persisted by fleeing to the Alps and hiding there. Centuries after his death, the Waldensian denomination joined the Genevan or Reformed branch of the Protestant Reformation.

- From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, 1/14/2010

The Controversy Over the "Great Crowd" of Revelation Chapter 7

By Hal Flemings - "Jehovah's Witnesses United"

September 1995

Especially, since the late 1970s, a number of ex-Jehovah’s Witnesses and sympathetic supporters from mainstream churches, have publicly challenged the understanding that Jehovah’s Witnesses have of the "great crowd" mentioned in Revelation chapter 7. These antagonists, by and large, believe that the great crowd’’ will be elevated to life in heaven along with the 144,000 mentioned in the same chapter. Their principal arguments seem to be:

(1) Since Revelation 7:15 clearly states that the "great crowd" "serve [God] day and night in his temple" and since other passages in the book of Revelation identify God’s temple with heaven, then the "great crowd" must of necessity wind up in heaven. Cites making the point that God’s temple is associated with heaven are: Revelation 11:19 which says: "Then God’s TEMPLE IN HEAVEN was opened, and within his temple was seen the ark of the covenant..." And, Revelation 14:17 which reports: "Another angel came out of the TEMPLE IN HEAVEN..."


(2) A "great crowd" is seen in heaven at Revelation 19:1,6 which says: "After this I heard what seemed like the loud voice of a GREAT CROWD IN HEAVEN saying ‘Hallelujah! Salvation and glory and power belong to our God. . .And I heard what seemed as if it were the voices of a GREAT CROWD and the sound of much water and the pealing of strong thunders, all saying ‘Hallelujah, because the Lord our God Almighty has come into his reign’" --THE BIBLE IN LIVING ENGLISH. It is believed that the "great crowd" ( "great multitude" in many translations) in both Revelation 7 and Revelation 19 are one and the same. If this is so, it is certainly the case that the "great crowd" in Revelation 19 is in heaven and that would, of course, have an influence over how the "great crowd" of Revelation 7 is to be viewed.

This paper disagrees with the conclusions just stated for the reasons that follow.


The Greek text at Revelation 7:9 refers to the "great crowd" as the "οχλος πολυς". Similarly the Greek text refers to the "great crowd" at Revelation 19:1 as the "οχλου πολλου". However, throughout the Christian Greek Scriptures this term describes ANY large group of individuals. For example, a large group of individuals that were disputing with the apostles of Christ are called "οχλον πολυν" at Mark 9:14. Also, when Judas Iscariot came to betray Christ on the night before his death, the text at Matthew 26:47 tells us that a "οχλος πολυς" came with him. John, the writer of the book of Revelation, in his Gospel of John describes a group of individuals that followed Jesus "because they were beholding the signs he was performing upon those who were ill" as a "οχλος πολυς" at John 6:2.

In several places, the Bible describes the angels as composing a substantial community. Consider these references:

Hebrews 12:22 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION): "But you have come to Mount Zion, to the heavenly Jerusalem, the city of the living God. You have come to thousands upon thousands of angels in joyful assembly".

Daniel 7:9,10 (REVISED STANDARD VERSION): "As I looked, thrones were placed and the one that was ancient of days took his seat; his raiment was white as snow, and the hair of his head like pure wool; his throne was fiery flames, its wheels were burning fire. A stream of fire issued and came forth from before him; a thousand thousands served him, and ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him".

Revelation 5:11,12 (NEW ENGLISH BIBLE): "Then as I looked I heard the voices of countless angels. These were all round the throne and the living creatures and the elders. Myriads upon myriads there were, thousands upon thousands, and they cried aloud: ‘Worthy is the Lamb, the Lamb that was slain, to receive all power and wealth, wisdom and might, honour and glory and praise!".

The argument should be evident at this point: There is equal if not superior reason for concluding that the "great crowd" of Revelation 19 is the huge community of angels inhabiting heaven. If they are not the "great crowd" here, then they are conspicuous by their absence.


It may be significant in more ways than one that in Revelation 11:19 the text speaks of "God’s temple IN HEAVEN". We must remember that the physical temple of God in Jerusalem had been destroyed by the Romans many years before the book of Revelation was written. Given that fact, one may wonder why John found it necessary to indicate that this temple was "in heaven". Was there another from which it had to be distinguished? Or, like the "woman" of Revelation 12, was there a HEAVENLY aspect (See Revelation 12:1) and then an EARTHLY aspect (See Revelation 12:9,13)?

Did not some Christian Greek Scripture writers speak of anointed Christians living on the earth as God’s temple? A few citations may establish an affirmative response to that question:

1 Peter 2:5 (KING JAMES VERSION): "Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ."

1 Corinthians 3:16,17 (KING JAMES VERSION): "Know ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are."

In the context of this aspect of God’s temple could not the "great crowd" serve in God’s temple here on the earth? Obviously, so.

There is another perspective that can not be ignored. In Hebrews chapter 9, the apostle Paul drew parallels between the physical temple of God that existed in Jerusalem and the spiritual temple of God. Interestingly, in this discussion the apostle Paul mentioned that the room in the temple called the Most Holy represented heaven. He compared the return of Jesus to heaven with the value of his blood in behalf of mankind to the entrance of the Jewish high priest once a year into the Most Holy with the blood of animals in behalf of the nation of Israel. Here are the specifics:

Hebrews 9:7, 8, 12, 24 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION): "But only the high priest entered the inner room, and that only once a year, and never without blood, which he offered for himself and for the sins the people had committed in ignorance. The Holy Spirit was showing by this that the way into the Most Holy Place had not yet been disclosed as long as the first tabernacle was still standing... [Jesus] did not enter by means of the blood of goats and calves; but he entered the Most Holy Place once for all by his own blood, having obtained eternal redemption or Christ did not enter a man-made sanctuary that was only a copy of the true one; he entered heaven itself, now to appear for us in God’s presence."

Within the temple there were two major compartments: The Most Holy and The Holy. These rooms were separated by a curtain. Paul identifies the "curtain" of the spiritual temple in these words found at Hebrews 10:19-22 (NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION):

"Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, his body, and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water."

In the context of our subject, the value of this passage is that it places the area outside of the Most Holy outside of heaven. The only way to get to heaven, represented by the Most Holy, was through the earthly sacrifice of Jesus, represented by the curtain. That meant, ipso facto, that The Holy represented the "priestly" services of the anointed on the earth. In other words, we would have a part of the spiritual temple that did not represent heaven. Other areas outside of the Most Holy would also represent the earth. Given this information, the "great crowd" could serve God in his temple and still not be in heaven.


The seventh chapter of Revelation seems to pinpoint exactly where the whole vision is centered. That place is the earth. What else could the following mean?:

Revelation 7:1-3 (NEW WORLD TRANSLATION): "After this I saw four angels standing upon the four corners of the EARTH, holding tight the four winds of the EARTH, that no wind might blow upon the EARTH or upon the sea or upon any tree. And I saw another angel ascending from the sunrising, having a seal of the living God; and he cried with a loud voice to the four angels to whom it was granted to harm the EARTH and the sea, saying ‘Do not harm the EARTH or the sea or the trees until after we have sealed the slaves of our God in their foreheads.’"

Nothing in the rest of the chapter tells us that we have left the earth as the site of the vision unless we interpret the "temple" references to mean heaven.


It is of interest that while the "great crowd" are serving God in his temple that they are promised a number of blessings: "That is why they are before the throne of God; and they are rendering him sacred service day and night in his temple; and the One seated on the throne WILL spread his tent over them. They WILL hunger hunger no more nor thirst anymore, neither WILL the sun beat down upon them nor any scorching heat, because the Lamb, who is in the midst of the throne, WILL shepherd them, and WILL guide them to fountains of waters of life. And God WILL wipe out every tear from their eyes." (Revelation 7:15-17 NWT) Paul told us at 1 Corinthians 15:42-54 and 2 Corinthians 5:1-5 that those who will go to heaven will be instantly given immortality. That certainly means that they will not be" GUIDED to fountains of waters of life" while they are serving God "day and night" in the heavenly part of the great spiritual temple. It ought to be clear that once those who go to heaven are in heaven the promises become realities right away. On the other hand, the seventh chapter of Revelation describes individuals who while serving God day and night in his temple look forward to the blessings mentioned, and that would mean that they are not in heaven in this vision.


Many will agree that the 144,000 featured in the fourteenth chapter of the book of Revelation are seen in their glorified station in heaven. In this account, the 144,000 have been redeemed from the earth and are present with Christ Jesus in heavenly Mount Zion. (Compare Hebrews 12:22-24 with Revelation 14:1) The question is this: If the "great crowd" also go to heaven why are they not acknowledged in Revelation 14:1-5? While it is true that it could be argued that the "great crowd" are inferentially acknowledged by the fact that the 144,000 are called the "firstfruits to God and to the Lamb", thereby indicating 'afterfruits', they are not seen in the HEAVENLY tableau, while the 144,000 are.


In certain pre-Christian scriptures we are informed that during the "great day of Jehovah" some individuals will survive the destruction and live on into the next world on the earth. In other words, while it is true some will go to heaven during the end times, some will survive over into the "new earth". (See Isaiah 66:19-24; Isaiah 24:1-6) Thus the view that at Armageddon all survivors which would include the remainder of the 144,000 and "great crowd" will go to heaven is subject to question since these passages show that some will remain here on the earth in the flesh to worship Jehovah from ‘Sabbath to Sabbath’ (week to week) and ‘new moon’ to ‘new moon’, (month to month).


No, the "great crowd" will not go to heaven but many of them, like Noah and his family, will survive the coming "great tribulation" to alight on an earth rid of the wicked . They will live to see God's will done on the EARTH as it is in heaven. That is their hope and treasure.


Do those of the “great crowd” referred to at Revelation 7:9, 10 also go to heaven?

Revelation does not say of them, as it does of the 144,000, that they are “bought from the earth” to be with Christ on heavenly Mount Zion.—Rev. 14:1-3. The description of them as “standing before the throne and before the Lamb” indicates, not necessarily a location, but an approved condition. (Compare Revelation 6:17; Luke 21:36.) The expression “before the throne” (Greek, e‧no′pi‧on tou thro′nou; literally, “in sight of the throne”) does not require that they be in heaven. Their position is simply “in sight” of God, who tells us that from heaven he beholds the sons of men.—Ps. 11:4; compare Matthew 25:31-33; Luke 1:74, 75; Acts 10:33. The “great crowd in heaven” referred to at Revelation 19:1, 6 is not the same as the “great crowd” of Revelation 7:9. The ones in heaven are not described as being “out of all nations” or as ascribing their salvation to the Lamb; they are angels. The expression “great crowd” is used in a variety of contexts in the Bible.—Mark 5:24; 6:34; 12:37. - Reasoning From the Scriptures, WTB&TS

Monday, January 11, 2010

The Christian Community and the Earthly Hope

BY HAL FLEMINGS - "Jehovah's Witnesses United"

Some individuals who formerly associated with Jehovah's Witnesses feel quite strongly that no True Christian is destined to live on the earth forever. For them, the Bible's comments about a "new earth" apply to faithful Pre-Christians like Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and Hezekiah. They are not at cross purposes with Jehovah's Witnesses on the issue of two classes, a heavenly class and an earthly class; they differ on who constitute those two classes. Moreover, they would argue that this difference can not be trivialize since if their position is correct every Christian should be partaking of the Memorial emblems, a significant affair.

On the heels of this stand, some of them say that the "other sheep" of John 10:16 are not the members of the earthly class but represent Gentile Christians who were invited into the Christian Church after the invitation went out to Jewry first. We will address both issues.


A revealing set of information is found at Isaiah 66:19-24 that helps resolve the problem at hand. We read:

"and I will set a sign among them. And from them I will send survivors to the nations, to Tarshish, Put, and Lud, who draw the bow, to Tubal and Javan, to the coastlands afar off, that have not heard my fame or seen my glory; and they shall declare my glory among the nations. And they shall bring all your brethren from all the nations as an offering to the LORD, upon horses, and in chariots, and in litters, and upon mules, and upon dromedaries, to my holy mountain Jerusalem, says the LORD, just as the Israelites bring their cereal offering in a clean vessel to the house of the LORD. And some of them also I will take for priests and for Levites, says the LORD. For as the new heavens and the new earth which I will make shall remain before me, says the LORD; so shall your descendants and your name remain. From new moon to new moon, and from sabbath to sabbath, all flesh shall come to worship before me, says the LORD. And they shall go forth and look on the dead bodies of the men that have rebelled against me; for their worm shall not die, their fire shall not be quenched, and they shall be an abhorrence to all flesh." - REVISED STANDARD VERSION

Now, at 2 Peter 3:13,14 the Apostle Peter gives this Isaian prophecy a Christian application. There the Apostle says:

"But ACCORDING TO HIS PROMISE we wait for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells. Therefore, beloved, since you wait for these, be zealous to be found by him without spot or blemish, and at peace."--REVISED STANDARD VERSION.

What can be extrapolated from Isaiah's words that would be helpful?

Since the context of the passage places us in a period in which the faithful are 'declaring God's glory among the nations' leading up to the destruction of the wicked and the establishment of the promised 'new heaven and new earth,' we are not jumping to conclusions in stating that it involves the Biblical "end times."

The text specifically states that among those gathered to God's side 'SOME will be taken for priests and Levites.' That ipso facto means that the OTHERS would not fall into that category. The New Testament associates the Christian heavenly class with the new priesthood. Revelation 20:6 declares: "Blessed and holy is he who shares in the first resurrection! Over such the second death has no power, but they shall be PRIESTS of God and of Christ, and they shall reign with him a thousand years." The "others" in Isaiah 66 are not seen in this role. What else is available to them besides ruling with Christ as kings, judges and PRIESTS? Does not this give us a Christian 'new earth class'? To further emphasize this point, the Isaian prophecy shows that after the wicked are destroyed survivors in the "FLESH" will view their dead bodies and carry on worshipping God from week to week [sabbath to sabbath] and month to month [new moon to new moon] in the 'FLESH' and the setting is clearly here on the earth. . This clearly excludes them from being members of the heavenly class of whom Paul explicitly states will be serving God as spirit beings. (I Corinthians 15: 42-55)

Revelation 14: 1-5 is also helpful in settling this dispute. John writes:

"Then I looked, and lo on Mount Zion stood the Lamb, and with him a hundred and forty four thousand who had his name and his Father's name written on their foreheads. And, I heard a voice from heaven like the sound of many waters and like the sound of loud thunder; the voice I heard was like the sound of harpers playing on their harps, and they sing a new song before the throne and before the elders. No one could learn that song except the hundred and forty-four thousand who had been redeemed from earth. It is these who have not defiled themselves with women, for they are chaste; it is these who follow the Lamb wherever he goes; these have been redeemed from mankind as first fruits for God and the Lamb, and in their mouth no lie was found, for they are spotless."--REVISED STANDARD VERSION.

The text is absolutely clear that just 144,000 are redeemed from the earth to be with Jesus on heavenly Mount Zion. (See Hebrews 12:22-24) Then, given that fact, who are the saved souls in Revelation 7:9 who live through the Great Tribulation? If they are not pictured in the heavenly tableau of Revelation 14:1-5---and do not know the new song mentioned there, who are they? And, where do they wind up in a saved state? There are only two venues: a new heavens and a new earth. Revelation 14 does not list them in the heavens with Christ. This delivers to us another evidence of a Christian "new earth" class.

The end time vision at Revelation 19:11-21 was clearly foreshadowed by the highly metaphoric Ezekiel 39:1-21. If so, we are provided clear evidence of survivors of the Armageddon experience who continue to live on the earth, cleaning things up after the destruction. That would have to mean a surviving group of Christians who will not spend eternity in heaven but on the earth.

Yes, the passage at John 10:16 is usually understood by non-Witnesses to be discussing Jewish Christians and Gentile Christians rather than a new heavens class and a new earth class. In a way, the material seems open to either interpretation or application. If the former view is correct it would seem to correspond with Paul's discussion at Ephesians 2:11-22. If the latter view is correct, it would certainly correspond with the arguments we have presented above. But, however John 10:16 is to be understood, it does not remove the clear evidence of a Christian earthly class and Christian heavenly class.

Is heavenly life set out in the “New Testament” as the hope for all Christians?

John 14:2, 3: “In the house of my Father there are many abodes. Otherwise, I would have told you, because I am going my way to prepare a place for you. Also, if I go my way and prepare a place for you, I am coming again and will receive you home to myself, that where I am you also may be.” (Jesus here shows that his faithful apostles, to whom he was speaking, would, in time, be in his Father’s “house,” in heaven, with Jesus. But he does not here say how many others would also go to heaven.)

John 1:12, 13: “As many as did receive him [Jesus], to them he gave authority to become God’s children, because they were exercising faith in his name; and they were born, not from blood or from a fleshly will or from man’s will, but from God.” (Notice that the context, in verse 11, refers to Jesus’ “own people,” the Jews. As many of them as did receive him when he came to them in the first century became God’s children, with heavenly life in view. The verbs in the text are in the past tense, so this passage is not referring to all people who have become Christians since then.)

Rom. 8:14, 16, 17: “All who are led by God’s spirit, these are God’s sons. The spirit itself bears witness with our spirit that we are God’s children. If, then, we are children, we are also heirs: heirs indeed of God, but joint heirs with Christ, provided we suffer together that we may also be glorified together.” (At the time this was written it was true that all who were led by God’s spirit were God’s sons whose hope was that they would be glorified with Christ. But this had not always been true. Luke 1:15 says that John the Baptizer would be filled with holy spirit, but Matthew 11:11 makes clear that he will not share in the glory of the heavenly Kingdom. So, too, after the gathering of the heirs of the heavenly Kingdom, there would be others who would serve God as followers of his Son and yet not share in heavenly glory.)

What specific references are there in the “New Testament” to a provision for Christians to be rewarded with eternal life on earth?

Matt. 5:5: “Happy are the mild-tempered ones, since they will inherit the earth.”

Matt. 6:9, 10: “Our Father in the heavens, let your name be sanctified. Let your kingdom come. Let your will take place, as in heaven, also upon earth.” (What is God’s will regarding the earth? What do Genesis 1:28 and Isaiah 45:18 indicate?)

Matt. 25:31-33, 40, 46: “When the Son of man arrives in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit down on his glorious throne. And all the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate people one from another, just as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. And he will put the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on his left. . . . The king will say to them [the sheep], ‘Truly I say to you, To the extent that you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’ And [the goats] will depart into everlasting cutting-off, but the righteous ones [the sheep] into everlasting life.” (Notice that these “sheep” are not the same as the King’s brothers, who are “partakers of the heavenly calling.” [Heb. 2:10–3:1] But these sheeplike ones would be alive during the time that Christ was on his throne and during the time when some of his “brothers” would still be experiencing hardship on earth.)

John 10:16: “I have other sheep, which are not of this fold; those also I must bring, and they will listen to my voice, and they will become one flock, one shepherd.” (Who are these “other sheep”? They are followers of the Fine Shepherd, Jesus Christ, but are not in the “new covenant” sheepfold, with hope of heavenly life. Yet they do come to be closely associated with those who are in that sheepfold.)

2 Pet. 3:13: “There are new heavens and a new earth that we are awaiting according to his promise, and in these righteousness is to dwell.” (Also Revelation 21:1-4)

Rev. 7:9, 10: “After these things [after the apostle John saw the full number of “sealed” ones who had been “bought from the earth” to be with Christ on heavenly Mount Zion; see Revelation 7:3, 4; 14:1-3] I saw, and, look! a great crowd, which no man was able to number, out of all nations and tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, dressed in white robes; and there were palm branches in their hands. And they keep on crying with a loud voice, saying: ‘Salvation we owe to our God, who is seated on the throne, and to the Lamb.’” - Reasoning From the Scriptures, published by the WTB&TS

Additional Reading:

Click on the photo to read: "Do all faithful Christians go to heaven?

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Pastor Russell vs "Rev." J. J. Ross

One of the earliest congregations of Jehovah’s people to be established in Canada was the one at Hamilton, Ontario. That strong, very active congregation naturally had the disapproval of the clergy. Not having any Biblical defense against the forceful thrusts of the truth, the clerics resorted to personal invective. They lashed out in a seemingly desperate attempt to destroy one man—C. T. Russell.

A clergyman who used this approach at Hamilton was a bombastic Baptist preacher named J. J. Ross. In 1912, he wrote a scurrilous pamphlet in which he made many false accusations against Russell. Acting on the advice of his legal counselor, J. F. Rutherford, Brother Russell laid a criminal charge of defamatory libel against Ross. As the complainant, Russell attended the trial to give evidence, and he submitted to a long cross-examination of roughly five hours. After the trial, his Baptist opponent falsely charged that Russell had committed perjury when asked about his knowledge of Greek. This “perjury” charge was published in Ross’ second pamphlet attacking Russell. In it the cleric misquoted what had been said in court, giving the cross-examiner’s question and Russell’s reply as follows:

Q. “Do you know the Greek?”

A. “Oh, yes.”

By omitting the word “alphabet” from this question, Ross sought to establish an exact contradiction with a later question and answer:

Q. “Are you familiar with the Greek language?”

A. “No.”

What really happened is clear from the official record (Police Court of the City of Hamilton, Ontario, March 17, 1913). It shows that C. T. Russell did not commit perjury. The cross-examination (by George Lynch-Staunton, K. C.) went as follows, according to the book Jehovah’s Witnesses in Canada, by M. James Penton:

“Question: ‘You don’t profess, then, to be schooled in the Latin language?’

Answer: ‘No, Sir.’

Question: ‘Or in Greek?’

Answer: ‘No, Sir.’”

After this, Russell was asked if he knew individual Greek letters, and he said that he “might make a mistake of some of them.” According to the book just cited, shortly thereafter “Lynch-Staunton asked Russell the question: ‘Are you familiar with the Greek language?’ Russell’s reply was an emphatic ‘No.’”

So, there was no question about matters. C. T. Russell had not committed perjury as Ross falsely charged after the trial. The case itself later went before a grand jury, which declined to return a bill of indictment. So, the case never went on for trial before the Supreme Court of Ontario. Under legal practice in Ontario, only the crown attorney is allowed to speak before the grand jury. We do not know how the case was presented to it or what caused that body to reject it. No decision ever was rendered on the merits of the case. In his subsequent writings, Ross treated this inconclusive result as though he had won a great victory. He and others apparently chose to forget that Russell was not the man on trial.


Despite the hatred of Christendom’s clergy, Jehovah’s people remained undisturbed. In 1923 they held a series of conventions, and these were very successful gatherings. For instance, about 1,000 persons attended the convention in Victoria, British Columbia, and some 4,500 were present for the one in Vancouver. This series of assemblies covered the larger centers of the West before moving on to the week-long gathering at Toronto. There the audience numbered around 1,200, with about half of the delegates coming from the United States.

Over 200 delegates traveled with C. T. Russell from one convention to another. One press report announced the arrival of the special convention train in Edmonton, Alberta, and then said:
“When asked about the charge that he is a ‘no hell’ preacher, Pastor Russell replied:

“‘There is no minister in the world that preaches more hell than I do, but the hell that I preach is the hell of the Bible and not the hell of the fire, brimstone, pitchfork and sandpaper-slide variety. The hell of the Bible is a most reasonable interpretation of the original Greek and Hebrew terms—Hades and Sheol—which means the death state, the tomb.’”

Concerning the later 1913 Toronto assembly, The Watch Tower said: “Some attended this convention largely because they perceived that an evil spirit of slander and misrepresentation was for some reason endeavoring to do injury to a religious work. Satan and his blinded and misguided servants overdo in their endeavors to injure the Lord’s cause. Sometimes the Lord overrules the wrath of man for his own praise and for the forwarding of the truth. As for instance, in the case of a man who, being told that Pastor Russell was Antichrist, went to see what Antichrist might look like. Hearing the joyful message of the Gospel, his heart was captured and now he rejoices.”

At the Toronto convention, some opposers went so far as to come on the grounds with a large banner on which there appeared, disparaging matter including the prominent wording ‘Russellism, Millennial Dawnism, Doctrine of Devils.” But the police made them move on. According to the Toronto News (of July 25, 1913), during that week “the activities of the Toronto anti-Russellites” had not been confined only to that city, for the newspaper said: “Anti-Russell literature has been sent all over the world to different secretaries of that movement, according to Mr. Philip Sidersky of Baltimore, a member of the National Federation of Gospel Missions.” But the News carried a headline indicating that the Bible Students were “not disturbed” by the antics of opposers.

- 1979 Yearbook of Jehovah's Witnesses, pp. 93-4, WTB&TS


I am quite familiar with the slanderous screed issued by Rev. J. J. Ross. In Canada they have just two laws governing libel. Under the one the falsifier may be punished by the assessment of damages and money. Under the other, criminal libel, he is subject to imprisonment. I entered suit against Rev. Ross under the criminal act, at the advice of my attorneys, because, as he has no property, a suit for damages would not intimidate him nor stop him. The lower Court found him guilty of libel. But when the case went to the second Judge he called up an English precedent, in which it was held that criminal libel would only operate in a case where the jury felt sure that there was danger of rioting or violence. As there was no danger that myself or friends would resort to rioting, the case was thrown out. I could still bring my action for financial damages, but it would be costly to me and impotent as respects Rev. Ross. He, however, is having troubles of his own. Since he began to attack me, he has split two Baptist Congregations--one in Toronto, the other in Hamilton. The last heard of him, he was in London, Ont., and again in trouble with his congregation. A lying spirit is sure to be a boomerang.

As respects my education in Greek and Hebrew: Not only do I not claim very special knowledge of either language, but I claim that not one minister in a thousand is either a Hebrew or a Greek scholar. To be able to spell out a few Greek words is of no earthly value. Nor is it necessary longer to study these languages, in order to have knowledge of the Bible. Our Presbyterian friends have gotten out at great cost Young's Analytical Hebrew, Chaldaic, Greek and English Lexicon Concordance, which anyone may procure. And our Methodist friends have issued a similar work-- Strong's Analytical Concordance and Lexicon. And there is a still older one entitled Englishman's Hebrew, Chaldaic, Greek and English Lexicon and Concordance. Additionally, Liddell and Scott's Greek Lexicon is a standard authority. The prices of these are not beyond the reach of the average man. By these works scholarly information respecting the original text of the Bible is obtainable. I have all four of these works and have used them faithfully. Very few college professors, even, would risk to give a critical translation of any text of Scripture without consulting these very works of reference, which are standard. To merely learn to read the Greek and Hebrew without a six years' course in their grammars is more likely to hinder than to help in Bible study; far better take the acknowledged scholarship to which I have referred.

Additionally I remind you of the many translations of the Bible now extant--all of them very good. I have all of these and find them useful in comparison in the study of any text--one sometimes giving a thought which another may not. The other day, for curiosity's sake, I counted Bibles in different translations, etc., in my study and found that I have thirty-two.

- 1914 Watchtower, September 15, page 286


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, 1/9/2010


In June 1912 Reverend J.J. Ross, pastor of the James Street Baptist Church in Hamilton, Ontario, published the pamphlet, Some facts about the Self-Styled 'Pastor' Charles T. Russell, denouncing Russell, his qualifications as a minister, and his moral example as a Pastor. Russell promptly sued Ross for "defamatory libel". During the examination on March 17 1913, Russell admitted that at most he had attended school only seven years of his life at the public school, and that he had left school when he was about fourteen years of age. As Counselor Staunton pressed him further, Russell admitted that he knew nothing about Latin and Hebrew, and that he had never taken a course in philosophy or systematic theology, and had never attended schools of higher learning. The Hamilton and Toronto Newspapers reported the claims made by Ross, but made no charges of misconduct on the part of Russell, and instead criticized Ross for his personal behavior and unprofessional demeanor.[64][65] In answer to Ross's accusations, Russell stated through various printed and public sources that he never claimed knowledge of the Greek language, merely the alphabet. He believed that his ordination was "of God" according to the 'biblical pattern', not requiring any denominational approval, and that his annual election as "Pastor" by over 1,200 congregations worldwide constituted him as "ordained", or chosen, to be a minister of the gospel.

64. ^ The Hamilton Spectator, Dec. 9, 1912; also Feb. 7, and March 17,18,22 1913
65. ^ The Toronto Globe, March 18, 1913

Also See:

The Ross Libel

Rev. J. J. Ross, of Hamilton, Ontario, published a libelous pamphlet against Pastor Russell. A warrant was issued for the arrest of Ross. He evaded the officer for some time and even failed to keep his appointment at his church to prevent the officer from taking him into custody. Finally, he was taken before George E. Jelfs, Police Magistrate, on the charge of criminal libel. Upon a hearing he was committed for trial. Upon motion, the Superior Court quashed the commitment because of a technical error the proceedings. Ross was again taken before the Magistrate.

When the case came on for hearing the second time Pastor Russell, who was a necessary witness, was away on an extended trip in Panama and other parts of the South, filling appointments previously made, and had no notice of the date of hearing. Ross and his counsel tried to make it appear that Pastor Russell was evading the trial. As soon as Pastor Russell returned to Brooklyn and heard that he was wanted he immediately notified the Magistrate that he was ready to come to Canada. He did go and gave his testimony. Again the Magistrate committed Ross to appear before the high court to answer an indictment to be preferred by the Grand Jury. When the case came on in that court the Judge of the court in charging the Grand Jury relative to its duties, among other things, said to the jury: "Unless the jury finds that this alleged libel would cause a breach of the public peace in Canada then no indictment should be returned, but the parties should resort to civil suit for damages." The jury returned "no bill," and it is manifest that they could not have done otherwise under this charge of the Court, for the reason that Pastor Russell lived in Brooklyn, New York, and Rev. Ross lived in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, and it would be physically impossible for the libel to cause a breach of the public peace when the parties were so far apart.

Thus it will be seen that the issues were never tried and never determined. Pastor Russell did not resort to civil action for damages, for the reason that he was advised that such an action would be useless, since Ross is irresponsible financially and could not be compelled by such a proceeding to publish a retraction.


Additional Reading:

Also See:

Rev. Ross published another pamphlet against Pastor Russell which for unmitigated falsehoods and misrepresentations of facts certainly has not an equal. Selecting here and there isolated paragraphs from the court records, he twisted them, added to, misrepresented and made them appear entirely different from their true meaning.

This could not have been accidental on his part. For instance, among other things, he charges: "He (Pastor Russell) sought to evade payment fixed by the court by fleeing from one State to another, making it necessary for his wife to get an extradition order, which she did, and which led to the condemnation of the cunning pastor by a third court, and the increase of the alimony."

Rev. Ross probably did not know that extradition proceedings cannot be resorted to enforce a money judgment. No "extradition order" was made, nor were there any extradition proceedings. But probably Rev. Ross thought the people would believe his statement, even though false, because he is recognized as a Minister.

Upon the hearing of the question of alimony, the Court adjudged that Mrs. Russell should receive from her husband the sum of $100 per month. This order was made March 4, 1908. The amount of alimony was never increased.

In the forepart of the winter of 1908 arrangements were made to transfer the main office of the Bible Society’s work to Brooklyn, New York, for the reasons heretofore stated. Some time was required to accomplish this work, but the removal, which was open and aboveboard, was completed in March, 1909. The Pittsburgh papers made mention of the removal. Pastor Russell remained in Pittsburgh until everything was removed that was to be removed, himself being the last one of the office force to leave Pittsburgh. No attempt was made to interfere with the removal, as indeed there could not have been any successful attempt.

In December, 1908, Mrs. Russell filed certain suits to set aside the transfer of property made by her husband to the WATCH TOWER BIBLE AND TRACT SOCIETY, and to enforce the payment of alimony.

Prior thereto, at a hearing of the testimony on the alimony branch of the separation case, Pastor Russell had testified that before the organization of the WATCH TOWER BIBLE AND TRACT SOCIETY, both he and his wife having consecrated their all to be used in the religious work in which they were engaged in serving the Lord, it was agreed between them that all of his property should be turned over to the WATCH TOWER BIBLE AND TRACT SOCIETY, FOR THAT PURPOSE. The property was his and he had the right to do with it as he pleased. That after their separation, acting in good faith and in harmony with their said agreement, he had transferred his property to said Society, and that he had not the means with which to pay the amount of alimony allowed by the Court. The personal property had already been exhausted by the Society, and the real estate was incumbered.


Pastor Russell on the "Trinity"



Syracuse, N Y -Pastor Russell addressed two large audiences here, one in the Empire Theater. We report one of his discourses from this text: "To us there is but one God, the Father of whom are all things, and we in Him; and one Lord Jesus, by whom are all things, and we by him. Howbeit there is not in every man that knowledge." 1 Cor. 8:6, 7.

For long centuries God’s people have been confessing a Divine trinity, taught by the creeds, which was incomprehensible; and meantime they have been neglecting the trinity taught by the Bible, which is more reasonable. If the trinity of the creeds was questioned, holy hands were lifted in horror, and the questioner was told that the subject was a mystery, which he could not possibly understand, but to doubt it would mean his damnation! Therefore he must profess to believe what he did not understand, and therefore could not believe.

The mysterious proposition was sometimes put in one form and sometimes in another. Some stated it to be 3 x 1 is one. But others stated it different, 1 x 3 is one. No wonder if some of the more intelligent specimens of our race [HGL549] declared themselves incapable of understanding such mathematics, and too honest to confess and profess what they could not believe. Many of these honest souls have been forced by their candor to remain outside the various denominations of Christendom.

Under such pressure it should not surprise us that there has sprung up an equally unscriptural theory, styled Universalism, desiring to worship God, yet too honest and conscientious to make false pretensions of faith. These have been driven to an antagonism of the popular theory of the trinity to the extent of ignoring the Divinity of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the teachings of the Bible to this effect. In a word, the great Adversary, during the Dark Ages, succeeded in swinging the pendulum first to one extreme and then to the opposite extreme, while the very Truth, which the Bible presents, lies midway between them. As Bible students, let us seek to know the mind of the Lord on this subject, as well as on other subjects, assured that the Wisdom which comes from above is alone capable of giving us proper instruction and guidance, and of solving our man-made mysteries.


Note the simplicity of the Bible statement our text being an example. Not once from Genesis to Revelation does the word trinity occur. Not once is there any hint of such a trinity as the creeds describe—except in the one text 1 John 5:7 —which all scholars, including trinitarians, agree is spurious—not found in Greek manuscripts of an earlier date than the seventh century—evidently "doctored" by some trinitarian Doctor of Divinity to meet his long-felt want. Our Revised English Version omits the interpolated parts of this text—introduced about the seventh century to support the trinitarian theory—although the revisers all profess to be trinitarians. When one’s attention is called to this spurious passage, the bungling character of the addition to the Apostle’s words is quickly discerned. St. John is thereby made to say that the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit are going about heaven testifying to the angels that Jesus is the Son of God. Even a child’s mind can discern the absurdity of this statement, for surely the angels knew that Jesus was the Son of God before He came into the world and during His earthly ministry and since, without any necessity for a testimony to this effect from the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.



The Bible sets forth that Jehovah is the Almighty God, and that our Lord Jesus is His Son, His offspring, gloriously exalted to the Father’s right hand of power, dominion and glory as His Chief Representative and Agent in all matters. The Father and the Son, although different persons, are one in the sense in which our Lord Jesus stated one in mind, in purpose, in plan, in action, in everything except in person. How clearly the Master stated this to us, and how strangely we overlooked the force of His words when He prayed for the Church that we might all be "one, even as Thou, Father, and I are one!" The oneness of the Church is certainly not a oneness of person, but a oneness of faith, hope, harmony, fellowship, even as is the oneness of the Father and the Son. Read over the Master’s words at your convenience at home. They are found in the 17th chapter of St. John’s Gospel.

As for the Holy Spirit, the spirit of Truth, the spirit of God, the spirit of Christ, the spirit of holiness, the spirit of a sound mind it is the antithesis, or opposite of a spirit of error, a spirit of vacillation, the spirit of Satan, or opposition to God, a spirit of unrighteousness, or unholiness. These are not different spirit beings, but emanations from spirit beings. As the spirit of Satan is a spirit of evil, or an evil influence, mind or disposition, a power emanating from Satan, so contrariwise, the spirit of God is a spirit of holiness, righteousness, truth, the emanation and display of the Divine will, purpose, energy and power. And this Holy Spirit proceeds from God the Father.

And our Lord Jesus Christ, being in the fullest harmony with the Father, His Spirit is the same spirit of holiness and truth. And all of God’s consecrated people, to the extent that they have the mind of Christ, the Spirit of Christ, have the Holy Spirit, and shed forth this holy influence upon all with whom they come in contact.

Thus we see that there is a trinity of the Scriptures very different from the trinity of the creeds a beautiful trinity. Before we proceed to demonstrate the Bible trinity and to give an array of Scripture texts proving it, let us glance backward and note well the conditions and circumstances which gave rise to the erroneous theory of the trinity set forth in our creeds, namely, as stated by some, that there are three Gods in one person God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit. Or, as stated by some other persons. There is one God in three persons, or a trinity of Gods, with one aim and object.



It will not be disputed that for more than four thousand years there was no suggestion of a trinity of Gods, nor of more than one God, amongst the Israelites. The heathen nations recognized gods many polytheism and at least one of these as having a trinity. But God’s people were warned against all these, being instructed in these words, "Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God is one Lord Jehovah. Thou shalt have no other gods (mighty ones, rulers) before me." (Deut. 6:4.) It should be noted that our Bible recognizes earthly gods or rulers, but none of these were ever to rank with the great Eternal One, whose Word and authority must stand supreme with those who would be His people. Indeed, the word elohim, as used in the Bible, and translated gods, signifies mere mighty ones.

Jehovah, being the Mightiest One of all, is frequently referred to by this word elohim. And sometimes, by way of showing His pre-eminence over other mighty ones (elohim), He is styled the All-Mighty One. The word elohim is also used in the Bible in respect to angels, because they are mightier than men, especially when they came to men as Divine agents, bearing the Divine message. In one instance the term elohim, or gods, is used in referring to men men placed in position of might or authority the seventy elders of Israel. Exo. 21:6; 22:8, 9, 28; Psa. 82:6.

As we shall shortly show, the words of Jesus and the Apostles fully corroborate the teaching of the Old Testament, adding that Jesus is the Son of God, and that the call of this Gospel Age is for the gathering of the Church, to be [HGL550] under and associates sons, "partakers of the divine nature." 2 Pet. 1:4.

It was after the death of the twelve Apostles that, without Divine authority, the bishops of the church were proclaimed to be the successors of the Apostles, and to possess Apostolic authority, as teachers in the church, and whose words were to be taken as of plenary inspiration. It was these bishops in council who declared the doctrine the 3 x 1 is one that God is one being, of three personalities or manifestations, all three being equal in power and in glory. The question is, Why did they make such a statement? Why should they concoct so unscriptural and so unreasonable a proposition? The Answer—is that it was done to combat certain errors prominent in their day. They flew from one extreme to another.

As soon as Christianity became prominent enough in the world to attract the attention of the Grecian philosophers, they confessed some of its teachings to be grand and noble, but they attacked the thought that Jesus was more than a man and that His death was in any sense of the word necessary as the Atonement price for the sins of the world. In proportion as they endeavored to discredit the Redeemer and to deny His prehuman existence, proportionately did the other party exalt and extol Him, until they claimed for Him that which neither He nor the Apostles ever claimed, namely, that He was the Father as well as the Son that He was not only equal to the Father in power and glory, but was the same in person, etc, etc.



A little Scripture is worth far more than a great deal of reasoning, much more than all the statements in all the creeds, because the Word of God is Truth, and the testimony of our creeds has long ago been proven untrue in many particulars. We will take the words of Jesus first, of whom the Father said, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased;" "hear ye Him!" Matt. 3:17; Luke 9:35.

Jesus declared, "My Father is greater than I" John 14:28.

"My Father is greater than all." John 10:29.

"Of Mine Own Self I can do nothing." John 5:30.

"As the Father hath sent Me, so send I you." John 20:21.

"I came not to do Mine Own will, but the will of Him that sent Me." John 6:38.

There is a unity here manifested an absolute unity of mind and purpose, because the Redeemer sought not to do His own will, but the Father’s will. Hence they were one, even as we will be one with each other if we as disciples are in harmony with the Father’s will and Word, and in harmony with our Redeemer’s counsels.

Hear Jesus again: After His death, after His resurrection, when speaking to Mary, He said, "I have not yet ascended to My Father. . . . I ascend to My Father and to your Father; to My God and to your God." (John 20:17.) "Say ye of Him whom the Father hath sanctified and sent into the world, Thou blasphemest, because I said, I am the Son of God?" John 10:36.

Perhaps the strongest testimony of the Scriptures respecting the exalted position held by the Redeemer is the word of our Lord Jesus Himself, "That all men should honor the Son, even as they honor the Father." (John 5:23.) This is in harmony with the thought of the Father and the Son being of one mind, one will, one purpose; but it distinctly shows that they are separate persons, otherwise we could not reverence the one as we reverence the other.

Our text is to the point. It declares the faith once delivered to the saints, and says nothing about the trinity three Gods in one person. "To us there is one God, the Father," the context shows that the Apostle is contrasting our faith with the faith of others who recognize gods many and lords many. We Christians, says the Apostle, recognize only One Supreme God of all gods- "The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ," as St. Peter styles Him. 1 Pet. 1:3.

Our text declares that all things are of or proceed from the Father. He is the Source and Fountain, the Father of mercies, "from whom cometh every good and perfect gift." His great Gift to mankind was the Gift of His Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, whom He sent into the world to be man’s Redeemer.

Three Gods, equal in power and glory, could not be said to send each other; neither would they pray to each other, as Jesus prayed to the Father- "Who in the days of His flesh, when He had offered up prayers and supplication with strong cryings and tears unto Him (Jehovah) that was able to save Him from death, was heard in that He feared." (Heb. 5:7.) An angel was sent to comfort Him and to assure Him of the Father’s love, that the Father had not forsaken Him, that He was well pleasing in His sight, and that He should have a glorious resurrection by the Father’s power in due time.

Our text proceeds to acknowledge our Lord Jesus, saying to us, "There is one Lord and Savior Jesus Christ" only one. "The Son of the Highest," our gracious Redeemer, "The chiefest among ten thousand, and the one altogether lovely" He who is to be the Bridegroom, the King of the future; He who is shortly to receive the Church to Himself as a Bride and Joint-heir in His Kingdom; He who, as King of the world and as Lord of the world, will reign for a thousand years, and backed by Divine power, will bring all into subjection to the Divine will.

It is He who will thus deliver up the Kingdom to God, even the Father, that Jehovah may be All and in all, and that the glorified Christ may be at the right hand of the Majesty on high next to the Father and we as His glorified Bride next to Him, at His right hand.


The Scriptures very explicitly declare to us that the Heavenly Father is from everlasting to everlasting God. But not so His creatures. From time to time He has exercised His Omnipotent Power and Wisdom in a variety of creations. Necessarily, however, these had a beginning one was first, and the Bible most clearly and repeatedly and distinctly tells us that that first one, "The Beginning of the creation of God," was the Logos.

And the Bible explains that Jehovah’s First-Born Son was highly honored, in that the Father used Him as the Channel and Agency through whom all subsequent creations were effected. He it was who was given the honorable commission and privilege of being man’s Redeemer, and [HGL551] of thereby proving His loyalty to Jehovah, and of being exalted to the divine nature, "far above angels, principalities and powers." From the very beginning He was above all other creations effected through Him; but by this last exaltation He attained, in His resurrection from the dead, a place far and away above all others next to the Father at God’s right hand, where He shall ever remain without a peer.

And, wonderful thought! The Call of this Gospel Age is to become heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Jesus Christ our Redeemer, by a manifestation of His spirit of obedience to the Father, and drinking the cup which the Father hath poured, and thus attesting our loyalty to Jehovah and to His perfect will in all things, even unto death.



In the opening of St. John’s Gospel we have a record of the greatness of the Logos. And it is much more clear and distinct in the Greek than in our English. The word logos, I remind you, signifies the "word," the "message," and hence is a proper term for special messenger. In olden times kings addressed their people, not directly, but through such a messenger, or logos, who stood before the king, the latter being screened behind a lattice-work. As the logos or messenger received the message from the king, he uttered or proclaimed it to the people; hence he was styled the logos, the Word.

This is one of the grandest titles given to our Redeemer. He was the Father’s logos, or Messenger, or Mouthpiece. He was the Channel of the Highest in all His dealings with the angels, and in His creative work; and later He became to men the Voice of Him who speaketh from on high, for God hath spoken to mankind peace, through the blood of the cross of Christ.

Let us read together the inspired record of St. John (1:1-3, 14, 10, 11,) "In the beginning was the Logos was with the God, and the Logos was a god. The same was in the beginning with the God. By Him were all things made that were made, and without Him was not one thing made. . . . And the Logos was made flesh and dwelt amongst us, and we beheld His glory, as the glory of the Only Begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth." "He was in the world, and the world was made by Him, and the world knew Him not. He came to His own (people the Jews) and his own received Him not; but to as many as received Him to them gave He liberty (privilege) to become sons of God" (partakers of the divine nature 2 Pet. 1:4), even to those who believe on His Name, who were begotten, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God at Pentecost and subsequently.

How beautiful, simple and straightforward and non-mysterious is the Divine record respecting the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, and their absolute oneness or harmony! How different from the nonsense which for so long we endeavored to believe, because we thought it supported by the Bible! Good Brother Wesley was one of those honest souls who was seriously troubled on the subject. He remarked that only the one text, 1 John 5:6-7, could be used as a foundation for this doctrine. He knew not that the difficulty lay in an interpolation an addition to the Apostle’s words. It is only in comparatively recent years that the three original Greek manuscripts have been brought to light, namely, the Sinaitic, Vatican No. 1209 and the Alexandrian. . .


Let us hearken to the Apostle Paul’s statement respecting our dear Redeemer and His glorious station. He uttered not a word favoring the absurd theory that our redeemer was His own Father and His own Son one in person. He declared in harmony with St. John’s statement that our Lord Jesus was "the Beginning of the creation of God." (Rev. 3:14) St. Paul declared that Jesus was "The First-Born of every creature, that in all things He might have pre-eminence." (Col. 1:15, 18.) And when in one of his statements he spoke of our Lord Jesus as though He were the Father, the Apostle promptly followed the statement with another, saying, "It is manifest that the Father is excepted (1 Cor. 15:27) in all comparison for, as Jesus declared, the Father is above all."

Our Lord Jesus’ own testimony is that He is the First and the Last, "the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End" of the Divine creation. In other words, when the Father created the Son He never afterwards directly created any other person or thing. The Logos was the First and the Last, and by Him were all things made that were made.

Let us then honor the Son as the Son and as the glorious Agent and Representative of the Father in all things by whom (through whom) are all things of the Divine Plan; and let us honor also the Father, as "the Father of lights," and Father of mercies and grace and truth, "of whom are all things." The testimony of the Bible is beautiful, honoring to the Father, to the Son and to the Spirit of holiness. As the Scriptures declare, "The words of the Lord are pure, making wise the simple" the teachable.

- National Labor Tribune—June 30, 1912

From William Miller to Charles T. Russell

The published writings of Bengel in the first half of the eighteenth century did not prove to be the midnight cry: “Behold, the bridegroom! Come out to meet him.” “Here is the bridegroom! Be on your way out to meet him.” (Matthew 25:6, Revised Standard Version; New World Translation) Those who followed up Bengel’s publications and acted according to them did not meet the heavenly Bridegroom in the year 1836 by a visible return of Him in the flesh. In course of time there came other stirrings among those Christians who professed to be of the “chaste virgin” class, particularly that in connection with a man born in Pittsfield, Massachusetts, U.S.A., in the year 1781. This man was William Miller, who became the founder of the so-called Millerites or Adventists. Says M’Clintock and Strong’s Cyclopædia, Volume 6, page 271:

About 1833, when a resident of Low Hampton, N.Y., he began his career as an apostle of the new doctrine, which taught that the world was coming to an end in 1843. The main argument on which his belief rested was that relative to the termination of the 2300 days in Daniel 8:14, which he regarded as years. Then considering the seventy weeks in Daniel 9:24, as the key to the date of the 2300 days of the preceding chapter, and dating the periods B.C. 457, when Artaxerxes, king of Persia, sent up Ezra from his captivity, to restore the Jewish polity at Jerusalem (Ezra 7), and ending the seventy weeks, as commentators generally do, in A.D. 33, with the crucifixion of Christ, he found the remainder of the 2300 days, which was 1810, would end in 1843. For ten years he held forth to this purport, and succeeded in gathering a large number of followers, which is said to have reached fifty thousand, who awaited, with credulous expectation, the appointed day. The result, however, turning out contrary to the teaching of their apostle, the Adventists, as they are sometimes termed, gradually forsook Miller. He died at Low Hampton, Washington County, N.Y., December 20, 1849.

Evidently, then, the launching of the Millerite movement did not turn out to be the midnight cry, “Here is the bridegroom!” The heavenly Bridegroom did not appear in the flesh visibly to those Adventists and take them in a rapture to their desired heavenly home, in 1843. And yet Bible study continued on. Thirty years later found a small group of men, not associated with the Adventists or affiliated with any of the religious sects of Christendom, studying the Holy Scriptures at Pittsburgh (Allegheny), Pennsylvania, U.S.A. They studied independently so as to avoid looking at the Bible through sectarian spectacles. Among these men was one Charles Taze Russell, just entered into his twenties. They were, of course, intensely interested in the second coming of the heavenly Bridegroom, Jesus Christ. However, their Bible studies led to their discovery that Christ’s return would be an invisible one, not visibly in the flesh as a materialized man, but invisibly in the spirit, inasmuch as he was no longer flesh and blood. His arrival would therefore be unseen to men, and this arrival would begin an invisible presence or parousia on his part. But it would be made manifest by evidences.


In the course of their Bible studies, these searching students took up a consideration of the “times of the Gentiles,” as spoken of by Jesus at Luke 21:24 (AV), and they associated those Gentile Times with the “seven times” mentioned four times in Daniel, chapter four, verses 16, 23, 25, 32. What did those Bible students determine to be the date for those “seven times” of Gentile domination of the earth to end legally before God? Well, at that time there was a monthly magazine being published in Brooklyn, New York, by one George Storrs, and it was called “Bible Examiner.” In the year 1876 the twenty-four-year-old Russell made a contribution on the subject to this magazine. It was published in Volume XXI, Number 1, which was the issue of October, 1876. On pages 27, 28 of that issue Russell’s article was published under the title “Gentile Times: When Do They End?” In that article (page 27) Russell said: “The seven times will end in A.D. 1914.”

In the following year (1877) Russell joined with one Nelson H. Barbour, of Rochester, New York, in publishing a book entitled “Three Worlds, and the Harvest of This World.” In this book it was set forth that the end of the Gentile Times in 1914 C.E. would be preceded by a period of forty years marked by the opening of a harvest of three and a half years, beginning in 1874 C.E. This harvest was understood to be under the invisible direction of the Lord Jesus Christ, whose presence or parousia began in the year 1874. Shortly afterward was understood to be the beginning of the great antitypical Jubilee for mankind, that had been foreshadowed by the ancient “jubilee” observances of the Jews under the law of Moses. (Leviticus, chapter twenty-five) According to the Bible chronology that was thereafter adopted, the six thousand years of man’s existence on the earth ended in the year 1872 but the Lord Jesus did not come at the end of those six millenniums of human existence, rather, at the start of the antitypical Jubilee in October of 1874. The year 1874 was calculated as being the end of six millenniums of sin among mankind. From this latter date mankind
was understood to be in the seventh millennium.—Revelation 20:4.

From that understanding of matters, the “chaste virgin” class began going forth to meet the heavenly Bridegroom in the year 1874, as they believed him to have arrived in that year and to be from then on invisibly present. They felt that they were already living in the invisible presence of the Bridegroom. Due to this fact, when Charles T. Russell began publishing his own religious magazine in July of 1879, he published it under the title “Zion’s Watch Tower and Herald of Christ’s Presence.” He had already become familiar with Wilson’s The Emphatic Diaglott, which translated the Greek word pa‧rou‧si′a as “presence,” not “coming,” in Matthew 24:3 and elsewhere. The new magazine was heralding Christ’s invisible presence as having begun in 1874. This presence was to continue until the end of the Gentile Times in 1914, when the Gentile nations would be destroyed and the remnant of the “chaste virgin” class would be glorified with their bridegroom in heaven by death and resurrection to life in the spirit. Thus the class pictured by the five wise virgins would enter through the door into the wedding.

As the years passed by and the time drew closer, the remnant of the “chaste virgin” class looked ahead with intensifying interest to that critical date, October 1, 1914. These were a class of Christians separated from this unclean world and fully “consecrated” to God through Christ, and they had symbolized their “consecration” to God by water immersion. They were endeavoring to let their light shine as they approached the time when they expected to meet their Bridegroom in the heavens. Finally the day arrived, October 1, 1914, and on the morning of that day Charles T. Russell as president of the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society announced to the headquarters staff of workers in Brooklyn, New York: “The Gentile Times have ended and their kings have had their day.”

- God’s Kingdom of a Thousand Years Has Approached, Published by the WTB&TS in 1973