Questions and Answers from the Field

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In our Vineyard work, there is questions that come in from time to time. In this report we’d like to show some and provide some answers, be blessed.

1) I have read from Ellen White that the lamp is the knowledge of the Word, the oil is the Holy Spirit and the light is God’s character and attributes. But here it is a bit different. I didn’t catch what the lamp is, but the oil is the Truth or extra truth. How do we combine both that they would make sense?

In Christ’s Object lessons, page 406 we read —

“By the lamps is represented the word of God. The psalmist says, “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto may path.” [p. 407] Ps. 119:105.

Thus we know that the lamp is God’s word. But how does the oil relate?

In that same reference it says —

“The oil is a symbol of the Holy Spirit.”

But the Rod message says —

“The oil can but represent revealed prophetic Truth, Truth that lightens the path ahead.”(Timely Greetings, Vol. 2, No. 11, page 12)

This connection is made with this–

“When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come.” (John 16:13)

Thus we see that the Holy Spirit is the Agency “Spirit of Truth” that takes the word of God we have and reveals prophetic Truth. Many have this word of God (lamp) with them yet have not enough oil “Spirit of Truth” to guide them. This may be due to Laodicean condition of “rich and increased with goods and have need of nothing.”

“You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” (Jer 19:13)

Christ’s bids all to come and partake in His prophetic word, yet few do. They are settled upon their limited knowledge.This oil, our present truth is NEEDED and we must have it in order to see our King.

Let this not be said of us —

“My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.” (Hosea 4:6)

2) There is a contrarian teaching from EW, p.36 and the Rod concerning the 144,000. Can you explain how SOP says that the 144,000 are persecuted and then triumph during the time of the plagues, while the Rod teaches they are safe in the kingdom (Israel) and free from any persecution?

Let us read the verse in context —

“I saw that the four angels would hold the four winds until Jesus’ work was done in the sanctuary, and then will come the seven last plagues. These plagues enraged the wicked against the righteous; they thought that we had brought the judgments of God upon them, and that if they could rid the earth of us, the plagues would then be stayed. A decree went forth to slay the saints, which caused them to cry day and night for deliverance. This was the time of Jacob’s trouble. Then all the saints cried out with anguish of spirit, and were delivered by the voice of God. The 144,000 triumphed. Their faces were lighted up with the glory of God.” (Early Writings, p.36,37)

First there is no doubt that this time period is during the plagues. That is the time setting.  Second the trouble is against the “saints”, yet which saints? There will be the 144,000 saints “first fruits” and Great Multitude saints “second fruits”. Jacob’s time of trouble is also established here during the plagues.

The Rod identifies both groups as saints —

“Thus ancient Israel’s dwelling in booths typifies modern Israel’s eventually dwelling in the woods. Irrefutably, therefore, the harvest of Matthew 13 precedes the close of probation, and is the time of the ingathering of the first and second fruits — the 144,000 and the “great multitude,” — all the saints who are to be translated.” (Tract 3, p.82)

We are to endeavor to find out how we can align this time period to the Rod understanding of the 144,000. It is VERY important to realize that SOP did not, during EGW’s lifetime, have much light about the 144,000. That was to come from the last prophet, the “Elijah” prophet (Mal. 4:5) just before the “great and dreadful day of the Lord.”

Once we do a study of ALL the references about the 144,000 and Jacob’s time of trouble we come to  the following understanding. There is two applications of this JTOT — one to the 144,000 (which happens on their way to the kingdom) and one to the Great multitude with both having trouble from the “Esaus” in the SDA church and in the Babylon churches. There is no other way we can harmonize the teachings.

If we don’t apply the two applications understanding we are left with one of them (SOP or the Rod) being in error. In other words, if we say  that the EW p. 36,37 statement is describing 144,000’s time of trouble we must throw out much of the Scriptures and the  Rod about our understanding of the 144,000 and the premillennial kingdom.

Such as —

“And many nations shall come, and say, Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, and to the house of the God of Jacob; and He will teach us of His ways, and we will walk in His paths: for the law shall go forth of Zion, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem. 

  “And He shall judge among many people, and rebuke strong nations afar off, and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks: nation shall not lift up a sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more. But they shall sit every man under his vine and under his fig tree; and none shall make them afraid: for the mouth of the Lord of hosts hath spoken it.” (Mic. 4:1-4.)

As well as Rod references such as —

Question No. 37:

If God’s people are in the Kingdom during the Loud Cry, how can they be put in prison or driven to the mountains during that time, as the Spirit of Prophecy asserts they will (“The Great Controversy,” p. 626)?

Answer:

When it is understood that the 144,000 are but first fruits, the forerunners or advanced guard of a great multitude of second fruits, the difficulty in question is immediately resolved. The first fruits stand with the Lamb, safe on Mt. Zion (in the Kingdom). Thus those who shall find refuge in the mountains, and those who shall be put in prison, can only be from among the second fruits—those who shall accept the message during the Loud Cry, but who shall not yet at that time have reached the Kingdom. (See our Tract No. 12, The World Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow, 1941 Edition, pp. 45-49.)  (Answerer, vol.2, Q-37)

“..the Lord is to allow  persecution to come anew upon His people in Babylon, He will do so only to serve His own end to cause them to get out of her dominion (as He caused His ancient people to get out of Egypt), and to go into the Kingdom-church–the only place on earth where there will be no sin and upon which the destruction of the plagues will not fall.” (See Revelation 18:4). (2 Answerer, p.16-17)

It is also very noteworthy that the beginning writings of the Rod, before light had come to brother Houteff in regards to the literal kingdom set up in the Holy Land pre-millenially, SRod Tract, p.36 explained in agreement with EGW that this was the JTOT –during the time of the plagues. In other words the Rod at that early written word history had no light to reveal about the safety of the 144,000 within the Holy Land during the plagues, because the kingdom Scriptures had not yet been revealed.

To summarize, EW 36-37 shows the JTOT mentions for the Great Multitude, just as the Rod said above. When it mentions “The 144,000 triumphed” we can gather that their work triumphed because “all” the saints were delivered  (144,000 and the Great Multitude).

3) What year did the “Branch” Davidians begin their doctrinal beliefs? And what is a major difference of their doctrinal teachings from the original Davidian Seventh-day Adventists?

The branch DSDA was started in 1955 by a man named Benjamin Roden. A former student of Brother Houteff. His story is a disturbing one and unfortunately soon after VTH’s death (1955) he began to spread the word that he was really the Elijah to come and write his teachings.

The Branch basically have the following doctrinal differences with the original DSDA.

  1. There was to be more than one Elijah to come. For instance Roden taught that he would be the successor of the Elijah message because he would never die, unlike Victor Houteff. Roden died in 1978.
  2. The Elijah message requires that all believers observe all the Feast days. Christ’s death was not a fulfillment of the ceremonial law. 
  3. The Holy Spirit is a female being. The heavenly family is God the Father, Holy Spirit the mother, and Christ the son. When they pray they address their words–“Dear heavenly family..”
  4. The Holy Communion is to be observed at certain specific times during the day.
  5. The year 1955 was the beginning of the “judgment of the living.”

There are others but those are the main differences. Original Davidians have never had any connection with the Branch movement nor any with David Koresh.

The Scriptures tell us to “study to show ourselves approved.” May we continue to sink the shaft deep into the  mine of God’s word.

(4) Is there going to be a Sunday Law set up in different parts of the world before Ezekiel 9. Not the USA just yet?

No there will not be. The Scriptures are clear in Rev. 7:1-4 that the angels are to hold back the winds until the sealing is completed. These winds are symbolic of  persecution and trouble to God’s people, which would indeed stop the sealing process if they were unleashed now. Let us remember that nothing can stop this sealing process now because all His people must have free access to the present truth message, learn it and obey it.

 

WHEN WILL THE WINDS BE LOOSED?

Question No. 46:

If the angel who seals the first fruits, the 144,000, goes right on with the sealing of the second fruits, the great multitude (Rev. 7:9), will the four angels be holding the four winds (Rev. 7:1) throughout the sealing of both fruits?

Answer:

As Revelation 7:14 says that the great multitude (the second fruits) “came out of great tribulation,” it is conclusive that the four winds will be held, as the angel commanded, “till we have sealed the servants of our God….” Rev. 7:3. The winds, therefore, are loosed and blowing after the 144,000 are sealed and while the great multitude is being gathered and sealed. Thus only can it be said that the multitude came out of “great tribulation,” out of “a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time.” Dan. 12:1. (Answerer, vol. 2, Q- 46)

 

Color code: Orange– The Lord speaking , Blue — Scripture, Spirit of Prophecy speaking, Brown — The Elijah message (Lord’s Rod –Micah 6:9) as brought by Victor Houteff

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