Archive for the ‘Elijah Interpretations’ Category

Sixth Trumpet Occurrences

September 22, 2018

In 1947 brother Houteff gave the following sermon which we think will be a blessing —

TEXT FOR PRAYER

Cherished Sin Keeps Truth Out   C.O.L. p. 50 — “‘He also that received seed among the thorns is he that heareth the word; and the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful.’  The gospel seed often falls among thorns and noxious weeds; and if there is not a moral transformation in the human heart, if old habits and practices and the former life of sin are not left behind, if the attributes of Satan are not expelled form the soul, the wheat crop will be choked. 

The thorns will come to be the crop, and will kill out the wheat…. If the heart is not kept under the control of God, if the Holy Spirit does not work unceasingly to refine and ennoble the character, the old habits will reveal themselves in the life…. Christ specified the things that are dangerous to the soul.  As recorded by Mark he mentions the cares of this world, the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things.  Luke specifies the cares, riches, and pleasures of this life.  These are what choke the word, the growing piritual seed.  The soul ceases to draw nourishment from Christ, and spirituality dies out of the heart.”

   This reading commands us to pray that the seed sown in our hearts may fall in good soil, that it may take root; that we be free from the cares of this life and from sin, for no matter how impressive the Truth that goes into one’s ears, It will never reach the heart if there is any cherished sin therein.

 

THAT WHICH IS TO BE DURING THE SIXTH TRUMPET WHILE PROBATION STILL LASTSTEXT OF ADDRESS BY V.T. HOUTEFF,MINISTER OF D. SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTISTSSABBATH, NOVEMBER 15,1947MT. CARMEL CHAPELWACO, TEXAS  

The subject of our study is found in Revelation, chapters 10 and 11.  We shall begin with–

Rev. 10:1 — “And I saw another mighty angel come down from heaven, clothed with a cloud: and a rainbow was upon his head, and his face was as it were the sun, and his feet as pillars of fire.”

   This angel has all the characteristics of a power that sends down “the latter rain,” and that causes the spiritual grain fully to develop, for that is what cloud, sunshine, and rainbow, indicate.  As a rainbow never appears without rain, the angel is therefore the angel that brings the rain and the sunshine for the development of the final harvest.

Rev. 10:2 — “And he had in his hand a little book open: and he set his right foot upon the sea, and his left foot on the earth.”

   There is but one book in the Bible that has had to be opened, and that is the book of Daniel (Dan. 12:4).  And since the first thing which the angel did was to open the book, the analysis proves that he actually appears on the scene at the commencement of the time of the end, the time the book was to be opened. (Rev. 10:2).

   You know that man naturally starts out with his right foot.  Now, since the angel’s right foot was upon the sea and his left foot upon the land, the symbolism shows that he starts out on the sea, the province of Daniel’s beasts (Dan. 7), then on earth, the province of the two-horned beast (Rev. 13:10-18).  His work, therefore, starts in the Old Country, and should include the very first truth that was disclosed from the book of Daniel.  All in all his message and power prove to be world-wide — land and sea.

Rev. 10:3, 4 — “And cried with a loud voice, as when a lion roareth: and when he had cried, seven thunders uttered their voices.  And when the seven thunders had uttered their voices, I was about to write: and I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Seal up those things which the seven thunders uttered, and write them not.”

   Here we see that there was another truth which could have been recorded, but John was told not to write it.  We do not know how extensive a truth the Seven Thunders contain, but possibly as much as or more than the Seven Trumpets.  Regardless, however, one thing stands out boldly, and that is that the omission of the Seven Thunders leaves a gap in the chain of Truth.  And since the Seven Thunders are not recorded, the truth of them cannot be revealed by interpretation, for there is nothing written of them, and therefore nothing to interpret from.  If, then, we are ever to know the truth of the Seven Thunders, it is to be shown to us perhaps by the same means as The Revelation was shown to John.

Rev. 10:5-7 — “And the angel which I saw stand upon the sea and upon the earth lifted up his hand to heaven, and sware by Him that liveth for ever and ever, Who created heaven, and the things that therein are, and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the sea, and the things which are therein, that there should be time no longer: but in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to His servants the prophets.” (At the beginning of the sounding of the seventh trumpet, the Mystery of God is to be finished.)

   What about the statement, “there shall be time no longer”? — The answer is found in Rev. 10:6, which in actuality proves that there shall be time no longer for the Mystery of God to be finished; that the remaining days of the sixth trumpet, the time to the sounding of the seventh trumpet, is the time for the Mystery of God, the Gospel of Christ, to be finished.  In fact, the very first announcement of the seventh angel is that the kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, — that the Gospel work is finished.

Rev. 10:8-10 — “And the voice which I heard from heaven spake unto me again, and said, Go and take the little book which is open in the hand of the angel which standeth upon the sea and upon the earth.  And I went unto the angel, and said unto him, Give me the little book.  And he said unto me, Take it, and eat it up; and it shall make thy belly bitter, but it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey.  And I took the little book out of the angel’s hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and as soon as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter.”

  To eat the book is, as it were, to “swallow” its sayings.  The honey sweet must be the joy that comes from its promises, and obviously the bitter denotes inability to digest, to comprehend all, and thus a disappointment.  These, you know met fulfillment in the days of the First Advent Movement, when through the study of the book of Daniel, they learned that the cleansing of the Sanctuary (Dan. 8:14) was to begin in the year 1844, but who misunderstood the cleansing to mean the end of the world and the return of Christ.  The disappointment came after the set date had passed and after the expectation of the people failed to materialize.

Rev. 10:11–“And he said unto me, Thou must prophesy again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings.”

   After the disappointment they were commanded to prophesy again; that is, again to proclaim the cleansing of the Sanctuary.  This work they were to do among many peoples, nations, tongues, and kings, obviously not to all.

   Thus it was that the first Advent Movement was reorganized and renamed, Seventh-day Adventists.  The Seventh-day Adventist organization, therefore, will not finish the work.  Its message does not go to all people, to all nations, tongues, and kings.  Consequently, the Church, too, is to be reorganized if the Gospel of the Kingdom is to be preached to all nations.  “‘A revival and a reformation must take place under the ministration of the Holy Spirit.  Revival and reformation are two different things.  Revival signifies a renewal of spiritual life, a quickening of the powers of mind and heart, a resurrection from spiritual death.  Reformation signifies a reorganization, a change in ideas and theories, habits and practices.'” — Christ Our Righteousness, pg. 121, 1941 edition.

   How will the reorganization come about?–

   “For, behold, the Lord will come with fire, and with His chariots like a whirlwind, to render His anger with fury, and His rebuke with flames of fire.  For by fire and by His sword will the Lord plead with all flesh: and the slain of the Lord shall be many.

   “They that sanctify themselves, and purify themselves in the gardens behind one tree in the midst, eating swine’s flesh, and the abomination, and the mouse, shall be consumed together, saith the Lord.

   “And I will set a sign among them, and I will send those that escape of them unto the nations, to Tarshish, Pul, and Lud, that draw the bow, to Tubal, and Javan, to the isles afar off, that have not heard My fame, neither have seen My glory; and they shall declare My glory among the Gentiles.

   “And they shall bring all your brethren for an offering unto the Lord out of all nations upon horses, and in chariots, and in litters, and upon mules, and upon swift beasts, to My holy mountain Jerusalem, saith the Lord, as the children of Israel bring an offering in a clean vessel into the house of the Lord.” Isa. 66:15-17, 19, 20.

   In these verses we see a slaughter taking place, a slaughter which takes away the transgressors of the Truth.  Those that escape the slaughter of the Lord are sent to the nations who have not seen God’s glory, or heard His fame, and they are to bring all their brethren out of “all nations.”  Plainly, then, the slaughter is in the Church, for those who escape are sent to preach to the Gentiles that know nothing of God.  Sending the faithful to the nations, after the slaying of the unfaithful, presupposes a reorganization.  And the commission at last is to go, not to many nations, but to all nations.  If they are to bring all their brethren out of all nations, then they must be the last, the ones to finish the work, “the Mystery of God,” to bring probation to a close and the world to an end.

Rev. 11:1 — “And there was given me a reed like unto a rod: and the angel stood, saying, Rise, and measure the Temple of God, and the altar, and them that worship therein.”

   The measuring of the worshipers is in reality the numbering of them.  And so you see that following the Seventh-day Adventist Movement there is to be a numbering of its people.  And as there is but one numbered company, the 144,000 (Rev. 7:3), the first fruits (Rev. 14:4), the servants of God (7:3), it follows that they are the ones who are numbered, who escape, and also who are sent to the nations.  Yes, they are the ones who finish the Mystery of God as they bring all their brethren out of all nations (Rev. 7:9), the second fruits.

Rev. 11:2 — “But the court which is without the temple leave out, and measure it not; for it is given unto the Gentiles: and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty and two months.”

   The worshipers, the members of the church, the tribes of Israel, are to be numbered, but those who are to fill up the court, those of the Gentiles, are unnumbered: “After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands.” Rev. 7:9.

   Seven times seven, forty-nine, determined the year of Jubilee, the liberation of the people and of the land, the type of the Kingdom complete.  Besides any other significance, the forty-two months being only six sevens, it signifies that the holy city, Jerusalem, will not be “trodden down” all the way up to the time of the antitypical Jubilee, — the Gentiles are to be driven out of it before the Mystery of God is finished, before the seventh angel begins to sound.

Rev. 11:3, 4 — “And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days, clothed in sackcloth.  These are the two olive trees, and the two candlesticks standing before the God of the earth.”

   When the prophet Zechariah asked what the olive trees of his vision symbolize, the angel answered, “the Word of the Lord.” Zech. 4:6.

   The two olive trees, then, are figurative of the Old and New Testaments, the Bible (The Great Controversy, pg. 267).  As to the symbolization of the candlesticks the Lord Himself points out that they are figurative of the churches (Rev. 1:20).  The two candlesticks in connection with the olive trees are therefore figurative of the Old and New Testament churches, the churches which gave us the Bible.

Rev. 11:5 — “And if any man will hurt them, fire proceedeth out of their mouth, and devoureth their enemies: and if any man will hurt them, he must in this manner be killed.”

   From this we see that though the Bible is the best friend to Its friends, It is a terrible enemy to Its enemies.  When Truth cannot save, it kills.

Rev. 11:6-11 — “These have power to shut heaven, that it rain not in the days of their prophecy: and have power over waters to turn them to blood, and to smite the earth with all plagues, as often as they will.

   “And when they shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them, and shall overcome them, and kill them.  And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified.

   “And they of the people and kindreds and tongues and nations shall see their dead bodies three days and an half, and shall not suffer their dead bodies to be put in graves.  And they that dwell upon the earth shall rejoice over them, and make merry, and shall send gifts one to another; because these two prophets tormented them that dwelt on the earth.  And after three days and an half the Spirit of Life from God entered into them, and they stood upon their feet; and great fear fell upon them which saw them.”

   I need not say more on these verses, for you will find a detailed explanation of them in Tract No. 2, The Warning Paradox, pp. 47-48, revised edition.

Rev. 11:12, 13 — “And they heard a great voice from heaven saying unto them, Come up hither.  And they ascended up to heaven in a cloud; and their enemies beheld them.  And the same hour was there a great earthquake, and the tenth part of the city fell, and in the earthquake were slain of men seven thousand: and the remnant were affrighted, and gave glory to the God of heaven.”

   The Bible points out that but one bottomless pit was opened, the pit out of which the locusts came (Rev. 9:2), and it was the heavenly Star that opened the pit to let out its captives, — the locusts who were to hurt only those men who have not the seal of God in their foreheads.  Since the locusts were capable of knowing who had and also who had not the seal of God in their foreheads, and since they were friends to God’s sealed people, the truth is obvious: The Star that liberated them from the pit is Christ, and the locusts are the Christians, the people that were rescued from apostate Judaism.

   Moreover, the fact that the Angel of Revelation 20:1 (Satan’s great enemy), is the One Who has the key of the bottomless pit, it follows that the Angel of Revelation 20:1 and the Star of Revelation 9:1 are the same, for the One to Whom the key was given, is the only One that could have it.

   Now we may ask who is the beast of the bottomless pit?  If the Star that came from Heaven and opened the pit is Christ, and if the locusts that came out of the pit are the Christians, then there is no way of escaping the conclusion that the beast which came out of the bottomless pit is symbolical of Christendom.  Thus it is that the Lord was crucified there.

   Now that the city is spiritually called Egypt, it denotes that it is holding God’s people in slavery.  The name Sodom denotes that God’s true people will have to be rescued from it as was Lot.

   A tenth part of the city must represent the Lord’s part, the tithe, so to speak.  The earthquake therefore represents a shaking in the church of God.  The remnant who give glory to God, can only be the faithful who survive the shaking.  Thus is the church purified.  This earthquake, then, is symbolical of the slaughter of Ezekiel nine, and coincides with Isaiah 66:16.

   Moreover, the fact that the Mystery of God is finished when the seventh angel begins to sound, and also the fact that the shaking is here shown to take place during the sounding of the sixth angel, the Truth stands out that the shaking takes place before the Gospel work is finished.  The Spirit of Prophecy in our day also foresaw this shaking:

   “I asked the meaning of the shaking I had seen, and was shown that it would be caused by the straight testimony called forth by the counsel of the True Witness to the Laodiceans.  This will have its effect upon the heart of the receiver, and will lead him to exalt the standard and pour forth the straight truth.  Some will not bear this straight testimony.  They will rise up against it, and this is what will cause a shaking among God’s people.” — Early Writings, pg. 270.

Rev. 11:14-19 — “The second woe is past; and, behold, the third woe cometh quickly.

   “And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of His Christ; and He shall reign for ever and ever.

   “And the four and twenty elders, which sat before God on their seats, fell upon their faces, and worshipped God, saying, We give Thee thanks, O Lord God Almighty, which art, and wast, and art to come; because Thou hast taken to Thee Thy great power, and hast reigned.  And the nations were angry, and Thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that Thou shouldest give reward unto Thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear Thy name, small and great; and shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth.

   “And the Temple of God was opened in heaven, and there was seen in His temple the ark of His testament: and there were lightnings, and voices, and thunderings, and an earthquake, and great hail.”

   If you wish to study the eleventh chapter of Revelation in all its details, read the Tract, “To The Seven Churches.”

(Timely Greetings, Vol. 2, No. 15 p.2-13)


 

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An Example of Truth Restoration

August 11, 2018

Image result for Elijah will restore all things picture

Our Lord said this —

“And Jesus answered and said unto them, Elijah truly shall first come, and restore all things.”(Matt.17:11)

The Elijah to come is to “restore all things” and this most especially includes Truth restoration. What do we mean by that? This post will delve into that to show a couple clear examples of restoration.

As we have pointed out several times, the scroll unrolls and with it our “present truth” appears for our day. SOP explains —

“In every age there is a new development of truth, a message of God to the people of that generation. The old truths are all essential; new truth is not independent of the old, but an unfolding of it.” (COL, p.127)

Now our truth may not be their truth. For example when the people of God were found to be in adultery in the Old Testament times, they were to be stoned to death. Yet that truth was changed when Jesus came. For the “new” truth was forgiveness and repentance (See John 8:1-11).

When we don’t understand this changing of truth we can get mixed up and God forbid–a false and confused teacher. Let us look at a recent example.

Brother E is a “present truth” teacher. At least he thinks of himself that  way. He makes lots of videos, even has a website with the Rod lessons and literature. Recently we visited one of his YouTube videos and noticed the following.

He proclaimed that the term “confederacy” as used in Isaiah chapter 8 was, among other things, a warning not to confederate or be a part of trade unions. He listed this as the number 1 confederacy among us S.D.A. He is attempting to teach this as our present truth. He used the following SOP as references–

“The trades unions and confederacies of the world are a snare. Keep out of them, and away from them, brethren. Have nothing to do with them.” (Country Living, p.10)

“We are now to use all our entrusted capabilities in giving the last warning message to the world. In this work we are to preserve our individuality. We are not to unite with secret societies or with trades unions.” (CL, p.11)

“Those who claim to be the children of God are in no case to bind up with the labor unions that are formed or that shall be formed.” (CL, p.12)

Ok fair enough, this seems quite clear and to the point. Not much to misunderstand here. However, this part of the scroll was to make a turn  when the Lord’s Elijah prophet appeared and “restored” this issue to our current time. Let us read–

SHOULD A CHRISTIAN JOIN LABOR UNIONS?

Question No. 139:

   What should be our position as to Labor Unions?

Answer:

   Though in their formative years Unions neither  had the power nor exercised the pressure which they do now, yet even then men were arduously  at work to make them what they now are. So to safeguard the true believer from becoming compromised by their dictates and thus involved in their strikes and picketings (not to restrain him from paying to them a part of his wages if they compel him to), the Testimonies forbid his taking part in furthering their  unchristian purpose. (See Testimonies, Vol. 7, p. 84).

   In persecuting Jesus and His followers, the Roman and the Jewish governments were doing a thing even more unrighteous than the Unions are doing today in coercing labor into their ranks, yet Jesus directed His followers then to pay tax to Caesar. So we must conclude that if one is required to pay a fee while working at a trade which permits no “open shop,” he therefore has no alternative to meeting this necessity as one of the shop’s requirements, regardless whether the Union be a good or a bad organization.

Thus, though in order to hold his job in support of himself and his family, he may pay the fee which the Unions exact for the opportunity to labor, yet he should not participate in any of their activities and functions–political, social, or otherwise. In short, he will not have any fraternal connection whatsoever with them.

   Under such circumstances, there is no difference in paying Union dues, state tax, or some other necessary expense, fee, or cost in order to keep at work. In view of this, those who follow in the light will pay Union dues only as they have to, and will discontinue paying them as soon as possible. (Answerer, vol. 5, p.64-65)
 

So we see that even though SOP was counselling the people of that day to “keep out of them”,  brother Houteff was giving the green light as long as certain conditions were met. This is a restoration issue for sure.

It is clear that we when take up the Lord’s final message of Elijah we make sure to look at what the prophet says FIRST before we attempt to teach  or report on the message. If we don’t do that we run the risk of exposing ourselves as private interpreters going against God’s prophets (See 2 Peter 1:20).

Therefore there is NO confederacy issue with joining trade unions today “in order to keep at work” to“support himself and his family”. Apparently the Lord saw down the stream of time that our economy would be vastly powered by the trade unions (even as it is today) and in order to deal with that the Elijah prophet made the statement.

Another truth restoration, which we have dealt with before is the taking of communion. Jesus told the apostles to “do this in memory of Me.”(Luke 22:19)  

Yet our present truth is different , let us read —

WHAT ABOUT COMMUNION SERVICE?

Question No. 120:

   Should believers who are well established in the message, celebrate the communion service  when they meet together?

Answer:

   As to authorizing the communion service in our own midst, we believe that since we all, as Seventh-day Adventists, have defiled ourselves as did the Jews at Christ’s first appearing (The Desire of Ages, p. 104) and since this sacred service works damnation to those who unworthily receive it (1 Cor. 11: 29), therefore we dare not now, as Davidians, take unto ourselves its hallowed privilege until as a people our lives bear convincing evidence of our repentance from the Laodicean condition.

   The lesson in not authorizing this blessed service in our midst at this time, is inversely parallel to that which John the Baptist taught in ordaining and insisting upon the baptismal service then; that is, John’s instituting the baptismal service then, showed that the Jews were not ready to meet their King, and the Rod’s not instituting the communion service now, shows that neither are we ready to meet our King, and that we must therefore quickly repent from our lukewarmness, buy the “eyesalve,” and anoint our eyes. Then we shall gloriously celebrate the communion service, and the shame of our nakedness will not appear (Rev. 3:18).

   Those who do not sense this great need are yet blind to the church’s undone condition, and to the Lord’s holiness. Just a firm outward faith in the message is not enough; its inward work in our lives is the all-essential and supreme work that must take place in the lives of all of us before we can conscientiously and profitably celebrate the Lord’s supper. Let us hasten that glad day. (Answerer, vol. 5, p.39-40)
 

Striking isn’t it? One must be advancing in the Lord’s scroll of Truth to truly appreciate those powerful and clear words of timely significance. So today we should not accept the communion as we are not worthy of it “as a people”.

So what do we have here? We basically have the anti-type test of how we respond to the advancing scroll and it’s Truth restoration. The Jews refused to advance in their understanding of Truth, as Christ clearly exposed. We as S.D.A may be looking at EGW first and foremost when faced with brother Victor Houteff’s statements. In other words we say as the Jews did, “We have Moses that is enough.” Ellen White becomes our Moses.

In closing brethren, right now we are experiencing our present truth and our instructions FOR TODAY. We must advance with the scroll, accepting Truth that may not necessarily be the same as days gone by. We must not be found with out that “extra oil” because our King said we must have this oil (our present truth) to get to the kingdom.

Batchelor vs. Houteff on the 144,000 (Part 2 of 2)

May 26, 2018

Image result for picture doug batchelor Image result for picture victor houteff

Continuing with part two ……

Question 4 — What is the seal in the forehead mentioned in Rev. 7 ?

DB —  Starts out by quoting Ephesians 4:30.

“And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.” ..There is something more tangible than that, that can be seen in the life and you’ll find that in this verse, Isaiah 8:16   “Bind up the testimony, seal the seal the law among my disciplines.”

.. What’s the new covenant? I’ll take My law and write it in their hearts. But we’re going to go a step deeper. Find out what is that seal in the law. “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall  labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of your Lord God ; in it you shall do no work, you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your  stranger who is within your gates.”  Now watch carefully  “For in six days the Lord made the heavens, the earth and the sea.”

There you have the name of God, the title of God, the territory of God in the middle of the law of God is the seal. 

In the last days if you will have the law of the Lord in your heart and in actions and in your mind you will not have the mark of the beast. If you don’t have the  law of God in your heart, your hand or your head, you’ll have the mark of the beast. ..if you’ll read Ezekiel 9 there’s another vision there. By the way Revelation is referring back to Ezekiel that everybody in Jerusalem was to be destroyed  except those who had this mark placed on them by this angel. Everybody in Ezekiel 9 who gets the mark is saved. Because they are sighing and crying for the abominations that re done in Israel. There was false worship that was happening among the people of Israel.

So DB declares that the seal as found in Rev. 7 is the obedience of the Sabbath and puts Ezekiel 9’s marking or sealing in past history.

VTH — Has the following report on this subject —

Question No. 21:

What is the seal of God upon the foreheads of the 144,000 (Rev. 7:3)? Is it the Sabbath seal or something else?

Answer:

Being sealed in Christ “with that Holy Spirit of promise,” after having “heard the word of truth” (Eph. 1:13- 4:30), the saints are consequently sealed by Present Truth—the truth preached in their own day.

“The seal of the living God,” the Truth, by which the 144,000 are sealed (Rev. 7:2), is a special seal, being the same as “the mark” of Ezekiel 9. (See Testimonies to Ministers, p. 445; Testimonies, Vol. 3, p. 267; Testimonies, Vol. 5, p. 211). It demands one’s sighing and crying over the abominations which defile him, and which desecrate both the Sabbath and the house of God, especially against selling literature and raising goals during Sabbath services. 

As the saints have this seal or mark on their foreheads, the angels will pass over them, not slay them. It is equivalent to the blood on the door post on the night of the Passover in Egypt. The angel is to place a mark upon the foreheads of all who by sighing over their own sins, and over the sins in the house of God, show fidelity to the Truth. Then the destroying angels will follow, to slay utterly both old and young who have failed to receive the seal. (See Testimonies, Vol. 5, p. 505)

So, the former seal enables the receiver to rise from the dead in the resurrection of the just, while the latter seal enables the sighing-crying one to escape death and forever to live for God.

Key points are brought up such as SOP showing the direct relationship to John’s sealing and Ezekiel’s (Testimonies to Minsters, p.445). This , we believe, is so profound that we have a separate report on it called “The Game Changer”.

SUMMARY

As we review the differences in interpretations of the two men we see clear opposing Scriptural teachings.

1) On our first question, Batchelor does not feel it’s important to expand upon the four winds in Rev. 7. Yet if the winds are held back for the sake of sealing the 144,000, then we should assume that these winds are not just some trinket but serious symbolical happenings to effect the earth and people therein. Houteff shows the most specific SOP reference there is in identifying , in context, these four winds –Testimonies to the Church, vol. 5, p.152. We cannot understand Batchelor’s ignorance of this reference.

2) Batchelor declares some standard SDA doctrinal teachings on the “spiritual” grafting in of the 144,000 into the “symbolical” twelve tribes. He does not believe that God has any heavenly record of the bloodline of the original Jews.  In other words the “twelve tribes”part of Rev. 7 is not to be taken literally.

Houteff counters that just as God has kept track of Jesus’ bloodline back to Adam, He must for a consistent reason have kept tract of the bloodline going forward in regards to the twelve tribes. In other words Houteff takes literally this accounting and since the Jews have been scattered all around the world for thousands of years, today no one knows who is who except God. The specific Bible reference Houteff uses is —

“I will make mention of Rahab and Babylon to them that know me: behold Philistia, and Tyre, with Ethiopia; this man was born there.And of Zion it shall be said, This and that man was born in her: and the highest himself shall establish her.The LORD shall count, when he writeth up the people, that this man was born there. Selah.” (Psalms 87: 4-6)

3) Batchelor does not address the issue of the 144,000 in regards to it’s relationship to the SDA church. But once again we see that mysteriously he ignores the profound statement from God through SOP where Ezekiel 9 and Rev. 7 are the same event-same sealing. As far as he knows these people can be any people from anywhere, and not just from the SDA church. The haziness here is disconcerting.

Houteff builds his case once again on Inspired statements. He emphasizes that the term “first fruits” requires that second fruits are to be harvested, lest the term first fruits is a vain thing. The harvest is ONLY through the church “Jerusalem” or “City” as shown in Ezekiel 9. Thus Houteff builds the case that as the 144,000 are all that are sealed from the tribes “church” then  a second harvest is gathered by these first fruits as shown in Rev. 7:9.

   “The city” is figurative of Judah and Israel, the church in which are to be found the 144,000 servants of God (Testimonies to Ministers, p. 445) those who are to be called by another name after the unworthy servants are slain.  And as the 144,000 are the first fruits (Rev. 14:4) of the harvest, they are the “escaped” of the Isaiah 66:19 and of Ezekiel 9.  This separation of the tares from the wheat in the church is to signalize the beginning of the final harvest of earth — the end of the world.” (Tract 14, p.19-20)

In the Rod writings you will see the very important SOP reference that tells us the “Israel of today ” is the SDA church, found in Testimonies for the Church, vol. 9, p.164.

“We are not to conclude that the Jews are the only descendants of Abraham.  Those who are fortunate enough to have this revelation brought to them, are the people.  There is no other safe conclusion if God causes the prophecies to be written, sealed, and then unsealed at His will and at the time appointed.  The Jews, therefore, are not the only descendants of Abraham.” (1 TG, no.37, p.11) 

The message is brought to the S.D.A church , and like a homing pigeon the people that come into our church are those “who are fortunate enough to have this revelation brought to them.” Yes, all within the S.D.A church have their chance but just as in Jesus day, only few decide to come aboard. As SOP says we are the “Israel of today” from God’s impeccable guidance.

4) In the very important point of knowing what the seal of God is in Rev. 7, Batchelor again uses the standard SDA understanding of the Sabbath as that seal in our foreheads. Though acknowledging a marking or sealing through Ezek. 9, he places this prophetic statement in past history, ignoring several key statements given in SOP about this subject.

“Study the 9th chapter of Ezekiel, these words will be literally fulfilled.” (Manuscript releases, p.260)

We know Batchelor has spoken of Ezek. 9 for a future event, but he has never placed it in connection with Rev. 7 and putting it BEFORE the winds blow (Sunday Law) where Inspiration places it. This we feel is serious derelict of teaching duty.

Houteff does use Manu. Releases, p.260 along with the in-depth study of Ezek. 9. Houteff shows us that Ezek. 10 which comes after chapter 9 clearly shows us the scattering of God’s Spirit “coals of fire” upon the “city” the smaller purified church, to prepare it for the second harvest of the world (See Joel  2:1-11 and Isaiah 66:15-21)

Importantly Houteff points out that while we are to keep the Sabbath, our present truth today is what gets us sealed. That is to “sigh and cry” for all the abominations done in the church per Ezek. 9 instructions. Amazingly Batchelor, as far as we know, has never expanded upon this sighing and crying to be done today in the church. Houteff leaves no stone unturned in going into what sighing and crying is  and what are some of the abominations done in the church today (See SRod , volume 1, p. 29-35)

In conclusion, the teachings are a sharp contrast and each must seek the Lord in prayer to know the Truth. Once we “study to show yourselves approved”, we should have little problem knowing what is God’s word on the 144,000 and seal and what is learned men’s ideas.

Batchelor vs. Houteff on the 144,000 (Part 1 of 2)

May 19, 2018

 

Image result for picture doug batchelor  Image result for picture victor houteff

 

In today’s S.D.A church world there is very well-known pastor who is considered one of the leaders of our church movement. As many of you know we have spoken about Mr. Batchelor  several times on this blog. We agree that few contain as much knowledge of Scripture and SOP as Doug. His position as one of the prominent leaders of the S.D.A church today is undeniable. His organization “Amazing Facts” is vastly expanding yearly. With this in mind it would be illuminating and a chance to present the difference between “learned men” and what some consider– Inspiration.

As we near the end of our S.D.a probation, we thought it would be good to discuss one of the main doctrinal teachings of the Elijah message–the 144,000. This and the church reformation is what our Lord told us would be the primary focus for His people in the last days.

We know that the Spirit of Prophecy writings began with a vision of the 144,000, then decades later in 1930 we know that the Lord gave us our first instructions of His written Rod (Micah 6:9) —

“It is the intention of this book to reveal the truth of the 144,000 mentioned in Revelation 7, but the chief object of this publication is to bring about a reformation among God’s people.” (SRod, vol. 1, preface)

So no one should doubt today that this subject of the 144,000 is paramount to us as Adventists. Ok let’s get down to the nitty-gritty of the two teachings, then you’ll decide which is Truth in the closet of prayer. Please pray BEFORE examining this study.

We will use Doug’s two-part YouTube series called “144,000 and the Seal of God” for his positions and we’ll use the Shepherd’s Rod writings for Victor Houteff’s position.

Let us first start with the Revelation Scripture that begins discussion on our subject —

“And after these things I saw four angels standing on the four corners of the earth, holding the four winds of the earth, that the wind should not blow on the earth, nor on the sea, nor on any tree.

 And I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal of the living God: and he cried with a loud voice to the four angels, to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea,

 Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads.

And I heard the number of them which were sealed: and there were sealed an hundred and forty and four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel.” (Rev. 7:1-4)

Question 1-   In this context, what does the four winds represent?

D.B —  Means “winds of strife” that will eventually blow upon the earth. The strife is “kind of summarized in the seven last plagues”.  This issue of what exactly the four winds represent in this Revelation context is largely not  discussed nor examined by DB. We wish we had more to give but that is basically all DB mentions about the winds.

VTH — Uses the following SOP reference for specific clarification.

“The time is coming when we cannot sell at any price. The decree will soon go forth prohibiting men to buy or sell of any man save him that hath the mark of the beast. We came near having this realized in California a short time since; but this was only the threatening of the blowing of the four winds. As yet they are held by the four angels. We are not just ready. There is a work yet to be done, and then the angels will be bidden to let go, that the four winds may blow upon the earth. That will be a decisive time for God’s children, a time of trouble such as never was since there was a nation. Now is our opportunity to work.” (Testimonies, vol. 5, p.152)

VTH comments  —

“the winds” held by the four angels of Revelation 7:1, represent the angel’s holding back “the anger of the nations,”–the image of the beast,–also that the angels will not let “the winds” blow into being the image of the beast before the 144,000 are sealed. (“Early Writings,” p. 38.) (SC, vol.5, no.6-12, p.8)

 

 “Here are brought to view two hurtings about to take place: one by the winds, the other by the angels; and two commands to the angels: one that they restrain the winds, that the winds blow not “on the earth, nor on the sea, nor on any tree” (Rev. 7:1); the other that the angels restrain themselves from hurting “the earth,… sea,” and “the trees,” till the servants of God are sealed. Rev. 7:2, 3). 

Since, therefore, as soon as the  servants of God are sealed both the winds and the angels will begin to hurt the question arises as to what the work of the winds and the work of the angels  represent — political strife or something else?  As the nations have always been at war, this two-fold work of hurting could not represent political strife. And as Jesus says that at the time of the end “nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom” (Matt. 24:7), it is clear that the hurting by the winds, also the hurting by the angels both of which are kept back until the 144,000 are sealed, must be figurative of holding back the “time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation.” Dan. 12:1. 

Accordingly, God’s restraining of the four winds is His holding back the image of the beast’s activity (Rev. 13:15-17) against the saints, while His restraining the four angels that they hurt not is His holding back the executing of His vengeance (Isa. 63:1-4; Jer. 51:18) upon the sinners who trouble the church, until after the sealing of the 144,000 is completed. Being coupled, these two hurtings bring the time of trouble such as never was.

   Revelation 7:1-3, therefore, reveals a two-fold conflict: wicked men against God (the blowing of the winds) and God against them (the angels hurting them).  But though the blowing of the winds and the hurting of the angels after the servants of God are sealed, will bring the “time of trouble,” yet “every one that shall be found written  in the book” “shall be delivered.” Dan. 12:1.

   From these facts we see that this time of trouble is held back in order to safeguard the sealing of the 144,000 servants, lest they, “the very elect,” be brought down to worship the image of the beast, or be killed for refusing.” (Tract 8, p.22-23)

Question 2 — Are the 144,000 spiritual descendants or literal descendants of the twelve tribes?

DB — Makes a special point of saying that the list of the twelve are not the same as frequently listed in the OT Bible. For instance here is a handy list of the progressive names/changes of the 12. This is done to set up one of his pillars for establishing that the 144,000 are spiritual descendants not literal.

12 Tribes of Israel

He says, “The idea that getting an even number from each of the tribes, that would be interesting, but I believe that they are actually talking about spiritual Jews. That could include literal Jews and it could include people who have been adopted into the seed of Abraham by accepting Christ. Let me tell you why.

You read in the Bible in the old Testament, you read in 2 Kings 17:6 , ten of the tribes were conquered by the Assyrians way back hundreds of years before Jesus was born.”

He goes on to point out that the two tribes of Judah did come back to Israel but the ten tribes were dispersed, intermarried and disappeared as a distinct people.

“So when Revelation says 12,000  from the tribe of Manasseh, could you please show me someone from the tribe of Manasseh or Isaachar or Zebulun? When you talk about Jews you are typically talking about people from Levi, Judah or Benjamin… You are not going to find people who are pure bred people from Zebulun, Manasseh, Issachar and so forth. So what does it mean?”

He then quotes Gal. 3:29 —
If you are Christ’s then you are Abraham’s seed, and heir according to the promise.”

Romans 2:28, 29 —
“For he is not a Jew which is one outwardly: neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh. But he is a jew which is one inwardly: and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit.”

“So the idea that to be one of the 144,000 you must have a DNA test is not taught in the Bible. God does not discriminate that way, if you are Abraham seed you are heirs according to the promise.”

Clearly DB does not believe in the literal application. Ok, fair enough ,let’s look at what the other view says.

VTH — has a specific report on this subject as follows —

“Whosoever has been converted to Christianity, accepting Christ as his personal Saviour, has had an experience which has completely overthrown and revolutionized his former plans and hopes, his entire way of life.  He has renounced the world and all its “pleasures of sin for a season” (Heb. 11:25), and has become a new creature in Christ, born again, heir of the kingdom according to the promise!  This is what Jesus meant when He declared to Nicodemus: “Ye must be born again.” And Paul, having this experience in mind, says: “If ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.” Gal. 3:29.

   Regardless, therefore, whether one be Jew or Gentile, he can have no part in the kingdom of Christ, save through the second birth, by which he becomes one of the seed of Abraham.  This spiritual transformation, nevertheless, does not fix anyone’s racial identity and tribal  lineage.  It can not, in other words, make one Judaite if he is not descended of Judah, or make him Ephraimite, if he is not descended of Ephraim.  Consequently, the 144,000, being of the sons of Jacob, cannot be of the Gentile nations.  They therefore, first of all, are lineal descendants of Jacob, though

Not Necessarily of the Present Identifiable Jewish Stock

   The ten tribes (the kingdom of Israel) were  carried away, scattered throughout the cities of the Medes (2 Kings 17:6), and so completely submerged in the sea of life of the surrounding nations, and assimilated, that they were utterly lost sight of, racially, to human reckoning.

Similarly, as the two tribes (the kingdom of  Judah) were carried away into Babylon, with only a few returning to Jerusalem after the seventy years of their captivity was accomplished, a multitude also of them lost their identity.

   Then, too, the early Christian church was made up of Jews only: the apostles, the 120 in the upper room (Acts 1:15), and the 3,000 who were converted on the day of Pentecost (Acts 2:41) were all Jews, as were, indeed, virtually all those who “were added daily” for the first three and a half years after the crucifixion (Dan. 9:26, 27; Acts 2:47).  And even after this period was over, and the apostles were commissioned to take the gospel  to the Gentiles (Acts 13:46), many more Jews became Christians, and subsequently, as Christians rather than as Jews, were scattered among the nations.

   Clearly, therefore, in each instance most of the sons of Jacob lost their racial distinctiveness.  As the Lord, however, has ever kept the genealogies  of all nations, especially of the sons of Jacob, He will, as He has promised, “make mention of Rahab and Babylon to them that know me: behold Philistia, and Tyre, with Ethiopia; this man was born there.  And of Zion it shall be said, This and that man was born in her: and the highest himself shall establish her.  The Lord shall count, when He writeth up the people, that this man was born there. Selah.” Ps. 87:4-6.

   Thus just as obvious as strange is the fact that no one today but the recognized Jew can vouch for his ancestry, with the result that the 144,000 can be gathered from almost every nation, kindred, tongue, and people, and yet be of the sons of Jacob!

   “And it shall come to pass in that day,” says the Word of prophecy in this connection, “that the Lord shall set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of His people, which shall be left, from Assyria, and from Egypt, and from Pathros, and from Cush, and from Elam, and from Shinar, and from Hamath, and from the islands of the sea.  And He shall set up an ensign for the nations, and shall assemble the outcasts of Israel and gather together the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the earth.  And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall beat off from the channel of the river unto the stream of Egypt and ye shall be gathered one by one, O ye children of Israel.” Isa. 11:11, 12; 27:12.

Since, therefore, history, logic, and scripture combine their evidences to prove unconditionally that God has preserved the genealogy of the chosen branch of the human race forward from Adam to Noah (Matt. 1:1-17), and backward from Jesus to Adam (Luke 3:23-38), He must, then, for a consistent reason, also have preserved  the identity of the elect today.  And this we see, is precisely what He has done in His designating the lineage of the 144,000, as “of all the tribes of the children of Israel.” Rev. 7:4. 

And though we know not what we are, and cannot ever of ourselves tell, the One Who knows all about us, even to the last hair of each head, knows our precise ancestry, although those of us who are to be gathered from the seed of Jacob are, says the prophet, as the sand of the sea,” whereas, comparatively speaking, the identifiable Jewish race of today, is but a handful to the nations, and therefore cannot today be the ones to whom apply.” (Tract 8, p.7-11)

So the two are presenting opposite views. DB saying it’s symbolic and not literal descendants and VTH believes they are a people with the bloodline “seed” passed on down through the ages. VTH establishes the point that the 144,000 are literal descendants of which God alone has kept tract of the bloodline. Let’s keep in mind that the tribes intermarried both in the OT and NT and thus the original Israelites and the Israelite Christians (early Christian followers) took Black, Brown, Asian, and other nationalities as wives. Thus today we cannot tell who is who–but God can and does!

NOTE: This is a in-depth issue connecting the 144,000 to the SDA church. The SOP tells us that the “Israel of today” is the S.D.A Church (see Testimonies, vol. 9, p.164) .See the following post for more clarification —

http://shepherds-rod.org/TGvol1/1tg37.htm

Question 3 — Are the 144,000 the only ones to be saved in the last days?

DB– Addresses this only from whether it applies from the world, does not mention or discuss whether it applies to the S.D.A church, The latter is a non-issue with him.

“If you do the math that would be pretty sad because there are about seven billion people in the world, and if only 144,000 are going to be saved, that means your chances are about 1 out of 50,000. It’s still better than the lottery in Florida, did you know that? No they are not the only ones saved. They are a special group of leaders.

Let me make the 144,000 really easy for you. In the same way that Jesus had twelve apostles that followed Him wherever He went, that had a special relationship with Him, that sang.. the Bible says that the only time Jesus sang, He sang with the twelve… Just like the twelve got the people ready for the first coming, there is going to be an army of apostles getting the world ready for the second coming.”

DB rightly says that the 144,000 are not all that are saved in the world, yet as mentioned he does not place any significance in the 144,000 and Ezekiel 9, which SOP does clearly in the following reference–

“This sealing of the servants of God is the same that was shown to Ezekiel in vision. John also had been a witness of this most startling revelation.” (Testimonies to Ministers, p.445)

So we must deal with this prophetic connection –Rev. 7 sealings and Ezekiel 9 sealings (markings) are the same event. The church purification and the birth of the 144,000. DB does not touch on this at all.

VTH — Addresses this from a S.D.A aspect. During his lifetime (died in 1955) some of the S.D.A leaders proclaimed that the 144,000 were the only ones to be saved. VTH addressed that with the following —

“The 144,000, let us note, are not from the Gentile nations, but strictly from the church, from the twelve tribes of Israel — from the descendants of Jacob (Rev. 7:3-8).  Then, to conclude that there will be no more than 144,000 living saints when Jesus comes the second time, is to say that not a soul from the Gentile nations is to be saved, which, of course, is contrary to the teachings of the Bible, not according to Jeremiah 8:20, not in harmony with the testimony of the prophets, though in harmony with the law.

   Moreover, the 144,000 are only the first fruits (Rev. 14:4) and where there is first there must be second fruits also else there cannot be first. Because there is a first resurrection we know that there is a second one.  Those that were seen after the sealing of the 144,000, the great multitude from all nations (Rev. 7:9) are, therefore, the second fruits.

   Besides their racial lineage of identification there are the words “first,” “fruits,” “servants of God,” “sealed” and “standing on Mount Zion” by which to identify who the 144,000 are and what they are.  Obviously they are called fruits because they are the result of the “harvest,” the work which separates the tares from the wheat.  The word “first” connotes that they are the first crop (group) to be harvested — separated from the “tares,” for Jesus explains that the harvest is the time in which to separate the tares from the wheat (Matt. 13:30).

   The harvest is variously termed: (1) the purification of the church (“Testimonies,” Vol. 5, p. 80); (2) the closing work for the church (“Testimonies,” Vol. 3, p. 266); (3) the time in which the bad fish are cast out, and the good put into vessels (Matt. 13:47, 48); (4) the cleansing of the sanctuary (Dan. 8:14); (5) purifying the temple (Mal. 3:1-3); (6) Judgment In the House of God (1 Pet. 4.17; Dan. 7:10).  This is Truth positive, you know, and every Seventh-day Adventist knows it, too.” (Jezreel Letter, No. 6  p.1-2)

However unlike DB, Houteff deals with this issue in a  specific way in regards to the S.D.A Church. The following references solemnly describe the 144,000 S.D.A issue.

“Will all but the 144,000 of the present S.D.A. denomination actually be slain in the separation?”

   Answer: All but those who do not receive the mark or seal, old or young, male or female, will fall under the slaughter weapons of the angels. (Ezek. 9:6.) Only those who sigh and cry for all the abominations in the midst thereof will receive the mark. (verse 4.) John saw 144,000 sealed (marked). If others from within the S.D.A. denomination besides the 144,000 should escape, it is not known to us.” (Sym. Code, vol.1, no.15, p.9)

So in regards to our church, VTH has a direct application of Rev. 7 sealings of the 144,000 applying to our SDA church. Thus the two men, are at opposite beliefs on this aspect of the 144,000 saved.  DB does not give any credence to it affecting our S.D.A church directly whereas VTH counters it has a profound direct relationship to us as Adventists.

This concludes our part 1 of this subject, next week we’ll finish with part 2. We’ll present a final summary as well.

 

Taking the Reins into His Own Hands

May 5, 2018

The following was written in 1938 as part of the News code items  from Victor Houteff. We found this  enlightening and hope you are blessed as well .

“As most of our people hardly understand what the Spirit of Prophecy means by the statement: “The Lord shall take the reins in His Own Hands” (“Testimonies to Ministers,” p. 300) we are writing the following paragraphs. 

The foregoing prophetic statement reveals two definite things. First, that the Lord is not now holding the reins in His Own hands, and, second, that at some time He will do so. That is, as God is not now ruling the denomination through its present organization, He must reorganize it.

Moreover, it is stated that God will do this by means so simple that even “the workers will be surprised;” that is, He is not going to start reorganizing the denomination by something great, something complicated, or something which the world calls wonderful, but rather by humble means, quietly, slowly, steadily, and as naturally as represented by the mustard seed (Matt. 13:31, 32), and also as the unnoticeable lump of leaven working in dough (verse 33), whereas, the workers will still want to “control the work, but they will lose out as grass is choked by the wheat 

As God’s taking the reins in His Own hands has been demonstrated in times past, none need remain ignorant of the method He will now employ to “perfect His work of righteousness,” nor of the system He will use to rule over His Own. 

In the days when Pharaoh reigned over God’s people, the Lord did not send a great army, led by a general trained in the school of the world, to set them free, and to give Him a chance to rule over them, but he sent Moses, the simple means, with his shepherd’s rod. To Pharaoh, this appeared so simple, so small, that he paid but little attention to that which was then taking place.

Nevertheless, as he saw the leaven working in his kingdom, at times he became convinced that he should let Israel go, but as he viewed Moses’ work, simple as it was, his heart hardened, and he said: “Ha, it cannot be of God, I will not let Israel go.” This was repeated time and again. Then, finally, the blow came by the death of the first born, and there was a great cry throughout the land of Egypt as Israel went out. But as Pharaoh was not yet convinced that God had taken the reins in His Own hands, he and his army went to bring them back.

Therefore, God employed the Red Sea as a means to protect His people and as a means to destroy Pharaoh and his army. The Lord will work in no less miraculous a manner now to free His people from being ruled by a worldly organization. He will command the work Himself in the same manner as He did in Moses’ and David’s day. 

Moreover, the voice of prophecy declares that: “the children of Israel shall abide many days without a king,” and that “afterward shall the children of Israel return, and seek the Lord their God, and David their king; and shall fear the Lord and His goodness in the latter days.” (Hos. 3:4, 5.) That is, ancient Israel was to be scattered among the nations and be a kingdom no more for “many days,” but after the “many days,” they are to return and again become a kingdom, and “seek the Lord their God and David their king.”

Therefore, as we are now living in the time of the returning of the 144,000, the twelve tribes, it is evident that they will at this time become a kingdom in the hand of the Lord God instead of being ruled by men through a common worldly organization. 

In the days of Moses and in the days of David, when the Lord had the work in His Own hands, He spoke to the people through Moses and through David, and thus He ruled. In like manner will He, at this time, rule the work when He takes the reins in His Own hands. 

In prophecy, God revealed to Ezekiel the injustice which, in the latter days, our time, would be done to God’s people by their shepherds, and said: “I will set up one shepherd over them, and he shall feed them, even My servant David; he shall feed them, and he shall be their shepherd. And I the Lord will be their God, and My servant David a prince among them; I the LORD have spoken it.” (Ezek. 34:23, 24.) Thus Ezekiel was also told that the present system, an organization of many shepherds, will be replaced by a new one and be conducted by one shepherd instead of by many. 

The people over whom the Lord is to take the reins in His Own hands, are, of course, only those who shall compose His kingdom. “And they shall teach no more every man his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for they shall all know Me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the Lord: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.” Therefore, the Lord’s taking the reins in His Own hands is the beginning of the establishing of His everlasting kingdom, just prior to His visible coming in the clouds.

Daniel also in vision witnessed this fact and declared to the king thus: “In the days of these kings shall the God of Heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever.” (Dan. 2:44.) 

Note that the kingdom is set up not after the “days of these kings,” but in their days, and that those kingdoms are to be broken by it. Therefore, although at first, and before the resurrection, the kingdom will not be completed with all its subjects, it will have its beginning before the second coming of Christ. 

Christ’s Own parable reveals this truth, for He says: “When the Son of man shall come in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then shall He sit upon the throne of His glory: and before Him shall be gathered all nations: and He shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: and He shall set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left.

Then shall the King say unto them on His right hand, Come, ye blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. Then shall He say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from Me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels.” (Matt. 25: 31 through 34, 41.) 

It is generally understood that when Christ visibly appears, the nations will die by the brightness of His coming, and thus the wicked will have no chance for either the Lord to speak to them or they to speak to Him. Furthermore, according to the parable, He sits on the throne of His glory instead of sitting on the clouds as in 1 Thess. 4:17.

Therefore, the throne of His glory is His kingdom where He, invisible to the nations, sits on the throne and gathers all nations before Him as recorded by the prophet Isaiah also, saying: “And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the Lord’s house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it.” (Isa. 2:2.) 

The prophet Zechariah describes the case of the wicked and the conversion of the righteous in the following language: “And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it. In that day, saith the Lord, I will smite every horse with astonishment, and his rider with madness: and I will open Mine eyes upon the house of Judah, and will smite every horse of the people with blindness.

And the governors of Judah shall say in their heart, The inhabitants of Jerusalem shall be my strength in the Lord of hosts their God. In that day will I make the governors of Judah like an hearth of fire among the wood, and like a torch of fire in a sheaf; and they shall devour all the people round about, on the right hand and on the left: and Jerusalem shall be inhabited again in her own place, even in Jerusalem.

In that day  shall the Lord defend the inhabitants of Jerusalem; and he that is feeble among them at that day shall be as David; and the house of David shall be as God, as the angel of the Lord before them.

And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem. And I will pour upon the House of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the Spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon Me Whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for Him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for Him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn.” (Zech. 12:3 through 10.) 

The taking of the reins in His Own hands is therefore in the time of the gathering of His people from among the nations, by the voice: “Come out of her, My people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues.” (Rev. 18:4.) 

When this voice shall be heard calling out God’s people there shall be no sinners in His kingdom, neither shall the plagues fall there, for the saints are called out of Babylon because of the sins that are there and because the plagues are to fall upon all there. 

In Matthew 13:49 is recorded the separation of the sinners from among God’s people, for at that time, says Christ, the wicked are taken out from among the just, whereas, by the voice recorded in the Revelation, the righteous are taken out from among the wicked–the manner of the one separation being the opposite of the other–which fact proves that the Lord takes the reins in His Own hands before the commencement of the Loud Cry of Revelation 18:4. 

Our danger at the present time does not lie in that which God has said He will do, for He is well able to handle the situation, but the great peril lies in that many of us are in danger of losing out by questioning and criticizing everything that arises in the unfolding of truth, criticizing the work and position of others, criticizing every branch of the work in which they have not themselves a part (“Testimonies for the Church,” Volume 5, p. 690), instead of coming to the help of the Lord.

Yes, some will attempt “to dictate even what movements shall be made when the work goes forward under the direction of the angel who joins the third angel in the message to be given to the world.”–“Testimonies to Ministers,” p. 300. Some go still farther by saying to the promised mouthpiece of God, “You are too earnest, you do not interpret the Scriptures in the proper way. Let me tell you how to teach your message.”–“Testimonies to Ministers,” p. 475. 

Others, though not so dictatorial will not submit themselves to the leadership of God, for Jesus foresaw the class that “hated Him” and “sent a message after Him, saying, We will not have this man to reign over us.” (Luke 19:14.) 

Therefore, because of their insubordination, Jesus has plainly told that at His appearing He shall command His servants, saying, “but those Mine enemies, which would not that I should reign over them, bring hither, and slay them before Me.” (Luke 19:27.) 

The parable makes it clear that through some man Jesus is to reign before His appearing, and that those who refuse to submit themselves to the one whom Jesus has chosen to represent Him shall lose out eternally. 

Therefore, let no one by inaction or by some other way show a desire to defeat the prophetic word of God, but rather pray, for “Thus saith the Lord God; I will yet for this be enquired of by the house of Israel, to do it for them; I will increase them with men like a flock.” (Ezekiel 36:37.) 

“Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any time we should let them slip. For if the word spoken by angels was steadfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just recompense of reward; how shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation?” (Heb. 2:1 through 3.) “Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus; Who was faithful to Him that appointed Him, as also Moses was faithful in all his house. And to whom sware He that they should not enter into His rest, but to them that believed not?

So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief.” (Heb. 3:1, 2, 18, 19.) “Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into His rest, any of you should seem to come short of it.” (Heb. 4:1.) “Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God. But exhort one another daily, while it is called Today; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stead fast unto the end; while it is said, Today if ye will hear His voice, harden not your hearts, as in the provocation. For some, when they had heard, did provoke: howbeit not all that came out of Egypt by Moses. But with whom was He grieved forty years? Was it not with them that had sinned, whose carcasses fell in the wilderness?” (Heb. 3:12 through 17.) 

“Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; neither as being lords over God’s heritage, but, being ensamples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.

Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble. Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty, hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time: casting all your care upon Him; for He careth for you.” (I Pet. 5:2 through 7.)   (Symbolic Code, nos. 10-12, p. 5-8)

Sabbath Day Confusion?

January 20, 2018

Image result for picture of lunar calendar

As we have posted before, Satan has been active in these last days. One of the most talked about latest ploys is the idea that the true “Sabbath day” is not really Saturday at all. YouTube, Blogs, Facebook, email, you name it, the word is out there that we as Adventists are being hood winked. We got the day all messed up! Why we are dis-honoring God Himself!

Is it truly so?

But do not for a moment think God did not know about this ploy. Yes indeed! What you are about to read is deep and profound.The following is a report made in 1940 by Victor Houteff.

We often read where our prophetess Ellen White was gifted of God. Especially when we learn that such beautiful and profound writings came from a 3rd grade educated woman! God did it again, brother Houteff had a 4th grade education. It seems God made these lowly educated servants, an example of His power, His ability, His omniscience.

If you’re impressed, by all means copy and spread this report. Satan may very well send his workers your way with this ploy. You can effectively shut them down with this report. Be Blessed.

"The Weekly Cycle Is Neither Solar Nor Lunar. 

The Sabbath on which the Lord rested was exactly six days after the moment creation began; then, on the seventh day He rested (Gen. 2:2).  Had He, though, blessed a day which is ruled by the moon, He would have then rested the tenth day, for the moon was not created until the fourth day of creation. (See Genesis 1:14-19.)  But keeping a Sabbath on the seventh day from the creation of the moon would not have been in commemoration of  creation, but in commemoration of the moon!

   The first Sabbatical week of creation's being three days older than both the sun and the moon, makes it clear that neither of the luminaries can regulate the week of creation.  Such a regulatory force would of necessity have deprived Time and Creation of the first three days, leaving them as a phantom "lost period."

   The two foregoing paragraphs completely invalidate the idea of the week's being dependent upon the monthly orbit of the moon, and render unnecessary any further discussion of the subject.  For the sake however, of clearing some other controverted points, as well as for saving ourselves time later on in answering detailed questions on this subject, we submit the subjoined observations.  From them the reader is asked to consider that if a lunar sabbath were correctly  named, should it not be named, not the sabbath of creation, but rather

Only a Planetary Sabbath?

   The Lord having rested on the "seventh day," not on the tenth, the weekly cycle began with the first day of creation, whereas solar and lunar time commenced three days later.  A sabbath which is governed by either a solar or a lunar calendar, though, could never memorialize the week of creation, but rather only the planets themselves, and therefore, if correctly named, must be called "planetary."  Then, too, the monthly revolution of the moon round the earth, not coordinating  with the daily revolution of the earth round the sun, as already pointed out, makes it

Impossible to Keep a Planetary Sabbath.

   The fact that the moon takes longer than 28 days to complete its revolution round the earth, then were we to standardize the seventh, the fourteenth, the twenty-first, and the twenty-eighth days of the lunar month, for the observance of  the Sabbath, as the misnamed booklet advocates, we would not have kept up with the moon anyway, for the lunar month is not  actually 28 days, but approximately 29-1/2 days.

   A lunar sabbath must necessarily coordinate with both lunar and solar time.  But a sabbatical month (28 days) falls 1-1/2 days short of a lunar month (29-1/2); and a sabbatical year (12 x 4 = 48 weeks; 48 x 7 = 336 days) falls 18 days short of a lunar year (354) and 29 days short of a solar year (365).  So at the close of each sabbatical year, the lunar sabbath-keeper, in order to keep time with the weekly cycle, as well as with the rotation of the earth and of the moon, would have to make the earth stand still 29 days and the moon 18 days.

This analysis corroborates the fact that the weekly cycle cannot be governed by the motion of either the moon or the sun, but only by the power of God, which brought forth the first day of creation, three days before there was either sun or moon.  And so, as we are again shown, the Sabbath is a memorial, not of the sun or the moon, but of creation.

   There is no doubt in the minds of any that the Jewish and Apostolic churches in Christ's time were keeping the right Sabbath day; and that the zeal which the Roman Emperor, Constantine, had for the Christian faith would have absolutely forbidden him to abolish the Christian's calendar and to establish another which would annihilate both the Sabbath of creation and their memorial of the resurrection.

   Surely no one supposes that had he done such an impious thing, the Christians would have honored him so greatly as to call him a saint and to fix the twentieth day of May as his festival, which some observe even until this day. (See Twentieth Century Cyclopaedia, Vol. 3,p.13)

   Indeed, the Christians would have made so much of his sacrilege that no conceivable circumstance could have concealed the blasphemous act from the prying eye of history.  But such an entry is not to be found in

History's Record.

"The use of the week was introduced into the Roman Empire about the 1st or 2nd century of the Christian era from Egypt and had been recognized independently of Christianity before the Emperor Constantine confirmed it by enjoining the observance of the Christian Sabbath.  With the Mohammedans the week has also a religious character, Friday being observed by them as a Sabbath." -- Twentieth Century Cyclopaedia, Vol. 8, p. 487.

   "The period of seven days...was used by the Brahmins in India with the same denominations employed by us, and was alike found in the  calendars of the Jews, Egyptians, Arabs and Assyrians." -- Standard Dictionary, definition "Calendar."

   "The week is a period of seven days having no reference whatever to the celestial motions, -- a circumstance to which it owes its unalterable uniformity.  It was employed from time immemorial in almost all eastern countries; and, as it forms neither an aliquot part of the year nor of the lunar month, those who reject the Mosaic recital will be at a loss, as Dalambre remarks, to assign it to an origin having such semblance of  possibility." -- Britannica Encyclopedia.

   "It is our pleasure (such is the Imperial style) that all the nations, which are governed by our clemency and moderation, should steadfastly adhere to the religion which was taught by St. Peter to the Romans; which faithful tradition has preserved; and which is now professed by the Pontiff Damasus, and by Peter, Bishop of Alexandria, a man of Apostolic holiness. 

According to the discipline of the Apostles, and the doctrine of the Gospel, let us believe the sole deity of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost; under an equal majesty, and a pious Trinity.  We authorize the followers of this doctrine to assume the title of Catholic Christians; and as we judge, that all others are extravagant mad-men, we brand them with the infamous name of Heretics; and declare that their conventicles shall no longer usurp the respectable appellation  of churches." -- Gibbon's Rome, Vol. 3, p. 81. (Milman edition.)

   This historical record plainly shows that the weekly period of seven days has continued unbroken from time immemorial, that Rome did not abolish the Christian week but the Roman, and that the one which took its place was the same as the Jewish, or the Christian.

   Even the lunar-sabbath advocate, himself, unwittingly admits that Constantine, in the days of his conversion to Christianity, discarded the eight-day week and adopted and confirmed the seven-day week -- the week of creation: "These three witnesses [The New International Encyclopedia, Encyclopedia Britannica, and Encyclopedia  Americana]," says the brochure, "tell us that the Romans did not have seven days to their week, nor their astrological names, till the days of Constantine, but that up to that time they had eight days."--The Sabbath of Creation, p. 24.

   Though the nations of today do not follow the Biblical monthly calendar, that in no wise alters the fact that the original weekly cycle has never been changed.  And as it is entirely independent of both the solar and the lunar calendars had God not preserved it intact throughout all the ages, the saints, now in "the times of restitution of all things," would have great difficulty to restore it and to vindicate its integrity.  Thus it is seen from every test put to it, that such a lunar  sabbath is unbiblical and unhistorical and the closer it is brought to the light, the plainer it will be seen to be

Even More Illogical.

   It is true that the ceremonial system (younger than the Sabbath institution, and set up because sin entered into the human family) was in some respects subject to lunar laws; but the seventh-day Sabbath's being established, not in relation to sin, but only in relation to the perfect work of creation, could no more be governed by the law of sin than it could by the law of the moon.  The Sabbath institution is senior to the ceremonial institution and has nothing to do with the law of sin, as has the Sanctuary.  The Sabbath, therefore, cannot bow down in subservience to an institution which is not only its junior but which also owes its existence solely to sin!

   Again we see that this author's theory of a "Planetary Sabbath" is blasphemous as well as unreasonable and futile.

   The theorist has used the writings of certain historians, but let the student of Truth closely examine the quotations, and he will find that they do not support the theory any more than the Bible supports it, which leads to

The Theorist's Main Trouble.

   Going off on such tangents is due to shallow reading and to interpreting the words of others without digging deep enough to find the thought of the original authors.  And the main reason that advocates of error stay in their errors is that most of them are determined at any cost to stand by their self-made theories!  And that is their main trouble.  But we hope and pray that these mistaken  brethren will welcome the Truth as contained  in the plain, pointed, unglossed, and fundamental facts set forth in these pages, and allow It to lodge in their hearts.  Thus only may they be led to walk in the light and to find rest in Him Who is anxious to lead us into all Truth, and Who therefore, sends this

Counsel And Appeal.

   Watch your steps, and pay no homage to either a moon or a sun sabbath-day.  For by sacredly honoring such a common day, you would be worshiping those things which were created in the last three days of creations's week; namely, the planets of the heavens and the creatures of the sea, the fowls of the air and the creeping things of the ground, the beasts of the field and the mortal man of clay!

   Follow the leadership of God instead of the leadership of the moon.  Be ye not idolators, for "...it shall come to pass in that day, saith the Lord of hosts, that I will cut off the names of the idols out of the land, and they shall no more be remembered:  and also I will cause the prophets and the unclean spirit to pass out of the land." Zech. 13:2." (Tract 10, p.32-40)

Questions from the Field

November 4, 2017

We are told to investigate any purported message of Truth including our “pillars”. The Spirit of Prophecy says —

“If the pillars of our faith will not stand the test of investigation, it is time that we knew it. There must be no spirit of Pharisaism cherished among us.” (Testimonies to Ministers, p.107)

“We should all know what is being taught among us; for if it is truth, we need it….No matter by whom light is sent, we should open our hearts to receive it with the meekness of Christ….O, may we act as men who want light!” “The Lord sends light to us to prove what manner of spirit we are of. We are not to deceive ourselves.” “We must not for a moment think that there is no more light, no more truth, to be given us.”-(Gospel Workers, pp. 301, 302, 310.)

It is plain to us that “more light” will come to us as we continue to search for it. If a searcher of gold finds a nugget in the hills, he of course does not stop there and act content. No, he is just beginning. He knows much more is around the area and continues diligently to seek more. In this understanding we thought it would be a blessing to post some Q and A from our last prophet. May you be blessed and enlightened.

        Question No. 9:

“Early Writings,” p. 15, speaks about God’s announcing the day and the hour of Jesus’ coming, and pouring upon the saints the Holy Ghost. Does not all this take place at the time of the seven last plagues, just before the second Advent? If so, then does it not show that the “latter rain” is to be poured out upon God’s people after the close of probation?

Answer:

True, we do understand from the passage in question that toward the close of the seventh plague, God will announce the day and the hour of Christ’s coming, and that He will then pour out His Spirit upon His saints. We do not, however, understand this outpouring to be either the “latter” or the “former rain” of truth, or yet the power prophesied of in Joel 2:23, 28, but rather the final manifestation of God’s Spirit, not to reveal to us any more of Gospel Truth, nor to enable us to proclaim it more fully, but simply to baptize us with a fitness to behold Jesus face to face, “as He is.” (Answerer, vol. 1, Q-9)

         Question No. 17:

“The Shepherd’s Rod,” Vol. 1, p. 44, says that the great multitude having palms in their hands are only the second fruits of the earth’s harvest, whereas “The Great Controversy,” p. 646, speaking of all “overcomers,” says: “In every hand are placed the victor’s palm and the shining harp.” How can these statements be harmonized?

Answer:

The multitude on which the Rod comments and the multitude of which The Great Controversy speaks, are two different companies, in two different locations, and on two different occasions. The former, the multitude of Revelation 7:9, have their palms on earth; the latter, the multitude of The Great Controversy, receive their palms and harps in heaven. These facts may be clearly seen from reading the statements in question.(Answerer , vol. 2, Q-17)

       Question No. 21:

What is the seal of God upon the foreheads of the 144,000 (Rev. 7:3)? Is it the Sabbath seal or something else?

Answer:

Being sealed in Christ “with that Holy Spirit of promise,” after having “heard the word of truth” (Eph. 1:13- 4:30), the saints are consequently sealed by Present Truth—the truth preached in their own day.

“The seal of the living God,” the Truth, by which the 144,000 are sealed (Rev. 7:2), is a special seal, being the same as “the mark” of Ezekiel 9. (See Testimonies to Ministers, p. 445; Testimonies, Vol. 3, p. 267; Testimonies, Vol. 5, p. 211). It demands one’s sighing and crying over the abominations which defile him, and which desecrate both the Sabbath and the house of God, especially against selling literature and raising goals during Sabbath services. As the saints have this seal or mark on their foreheads, the angels will pass over them, not slay them. It is equivalent to the blood on the door post on the night of the Passover in Egypt. The angel is to place a mark upon the foreheads of all who by sighing over their own sins, and over the sins in the house of God, show fidelity to the Truth. Then the destroying angels will follow, to slay utterly both old and young who have failed to receive the seal. (See Testimonies, Vol. 5, p. 505)

So, the former seal enables the receiver to rise from the dead in the resurrection of the just, while the latter seal enables the sighing-crying one to escape death and forever to live for God. (Answerer, vol. 2, Q-21)

     Question No. 28:

“The Shepherd’s Rod,” Vol. 2, p. 151, quotes from “A Word to the Little Flock,” concerning the number of the two-horned beast. Since, however, the booklet is written in part by Elder James White and in part by Sister White, we should like to know which wrote the statement in mention, for if it is from Elder White, we do not see how it can carry the authority that the “Rod” attaches to it.

Answer:

Though the quotation in point is from Elder White’s pen, the very fact that A Word to the Little Flock was written jointly by him and his wife, shows that she endorsed his articles in the booklet as no less authoritative than her own. Otherwise she would never have permitted his to be published as one with hers. Whatever truth, moreover, he or any of the rest of the pioneers in those days embraced, they originally received through her. In other words, in writing what he did in A Word to the Little Flock, he was only resetting that which was revealed through Sister White. The truth of this is quickly seen from the fact that her statement on the number of the beast, page 19, perfectly corroborates his statement on page 9, the part which the Rod quotes. The acceptance, therefore, of the one’s views on the subject is the acceptance of the other’s.(Answerer, vol. 2, Q-28)

      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)

        Question No. 49:

When does the twenty-four-hour day begin—at sunset, at sunrise, or at midnight?

Answer:

  The twenty-four-hour cycle begins at sunset, because at the moment the earth came into existence and began to rotate on its axis, there was no light “upon the face of the deep,” whereupon “God said, Let there be light: and there was light….And the evening and the morning were the first day.” Gen. 1:2, 3, 5.

  The “light” which shone on the first day, and by which God divided the day from the night (set the earth revolving on its axis), was not, however, that of the sun, for the sun and the moon were not created until the fourth day, when He spoke them forth “to rule over the day and over the night” (Gen. 1:18), which He had beforehand established.

  Thus it was that whereas the earth began punctuating eternal time with the first night of creation week, from which the weekly seventh-day Sabbath is measured; the moon began punctuating time at the end of the third day and at the beginning of the fourth night from which the month is measured, and the sun began to punctuate time at the end of the fourth night and the beginning of the fourth day, from which the year is measured. Accordingly, the time-span which measures and segments the week, is three days in advance of the time-spans which measure and segment the solar year and the lunar month. In order, therefore, that His people might commemorate the week of creation, from the instant that the span of earthly time began, God commanded: “From even unto even, shall ye celebrate your sabbath.” Lev. 23:32.

  So the twenty-four-hour day begins with the; night, at sunset; and the daytime itself, separate from the nighttime, begins at sunrise.(Answerer, vol. 3, Q-49)

Question No. 50:

Can you tell us the Hebrew New Year’s day and the days Or their sacred feasts, In terms of our Roman calendar?

Answer:

While leading the Hebrew host from bondage to freedom, the Lord was firmly establishing them in the truth of all things, including the truth of the day on which the year begins, of the day on; which the month begins, and of the day on which ‘ the week begins. Obviously, the Hebrew religion had largely to do with the days of the week, of the month, and of the year.

The Hebrews were forever to keep holy, 
(1) not a seventh, but the seventh, day of each week, the Sabbath; 
(2) the days from the fifteenth to the twenty-first day of the first month, the Passover week; 
(3) the fiftieth day after the sheaf of the j first fruits was offered, the Pentecost; 
(4) the tenth day of the seventh month, the Atonement; 
(5) the days from the fifteenth to the twenty-first ‘day of the same month, the Feast of Tabernacles; . and (6) the feasts of the new moons. 
Thus the All-knowing One, He who created the heavenly bodies and knows the very moment He set them in motion to govern the day, the month, and the year, decreed that the holy feasts be observed in the very month and on the very day on which they were first ordained.

  And He appointed the “lights in the firmament… for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years” (Gen. 1:14), by the movements of which He fixed each solar and each lunar date, so that it could never be lost sight of. Then to make doubly secure against such a loss. He “spake unto Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt, saying, This month shall be unto you the beginning of months: it shall be the first month of the year to you.” Ex. 12:1, 2.

  Thus we see that His great and never erring timepiece for earth, the earth’s own invariable movements, fix the day and the year; whereas the moon’s revolving round the earth makes the months.

  But the Roman New Year, January 1, finds its establishment, not in the movements of the solar system, but in the notions of mythology. Consequently, as the date does not coincide with either the vernal or the autumnal equinox, or with either the summer or the winter solstice, then should earth’s inhabitants ever lose count of the day, and need to recover it, they would be helpless to do so.

  To prevent His people from bringing upon themselves such a catastrophe, and to have them intelligent as to the time the year begins, the Lord gave to Moses the sacred yearly calendar, which cannot be lost or miscalculated so long as the earth remains. He told him that the  day which preceded the exodus was the fourteenth day of the first month- and that forever  thereafter, they were to commemorate the Pass over on that very night each year, the night following the fourteenth day. Thus was the Lord reestablishing the creation calendar, reaffirming  that the year begins on the day of the vernal equinox, on which spring, the first season of the year, commences, and on which the sun and the loon were created (the fourth day from the beginning of creation)-the only point in time at which, in the very nature of things, the year could begin. And so it is that the Passover, the Atonement, and the Feast of Tabernacles (the three most important feasts in the year), besides other feasts, are controlled by the solar year and by the lunar month; the weekly Sabbath by the day on which creation began; and the year itself by the vernal equinox, the immovable signpost.

  Beginning its first month of the year with the first new moon, at, or after, the vernal equinox, March 20-21, it puts the fourteenth day, that on which the Passover lamb was to be slain, on April 3. Once for all, is seen the utter impossibility of the Roman month’s having the slightest thing to do with reckoning the time of either the Passover or the sheaf offering, and thus not the slightest thing to do with reckoning the time of either the crucifixion or the resurrection of Christ.

   This is more graphically seen from the correspondence of the sacred events which came in the spring of the year A.D. 31, the year Christ was crucified, with the sacred events which came in the fall of the year A.D. 27, the year in which He baptized, as viewed diagrammatically: 
  
  
 

   This chart enables us to see that just as one solar season matches another (the vernal equinox matches the autumnal equinox, and the summer solstice, the winter solstice), in like fashion the sacred feasts of one season match the sacred feasts of another season: the tenth day of the first month, the separation of the unblemished lamb from the flock (Ex. 12:3), corresponding to the tenth day of the seventh month, the work of Atonement, the separation of the righteous from the unrighteous, signifying in both events a day of judgment, a day of separating the holy from the unholy; the sixteenth of the first month, the day Christ was crucified, corresponding to the sixteenth of the seventh month, the day He was baptized, showing that His watery grave foreshadowed His grave in the tomb; the eighteenth day of the first month, the resurrection, corresponding to the eighteenth day of the seventh month, the first day of the wilderness temptation; His forty days of victorious ministry to His disciples, corresponding to His forty days of victorious conflict with Satan; and His disciples’ preaching the gospel after the Pentecost, corresponding to His preaching the gospel after the wilderness temptation.

  To establish the date of His baptism as the sixteenth day of the seventh month, we need only to consider, aside from the coincidences, the fact -that the “more sure word of prophecy” certifies that He was to preach three and a half years, and then be “cut off.” Dan. 9:26. And as He was crucified on the sixteenth of the first month, he must have been baptized for the ministry just three and a half years before, on the sixteenth day of the seventh month. (Answerer vol. 3, Q-50)

 

 

Two Hundred Million Horsemen

September 23, 2017

Image result for two hundred million horsemen

One of the most mysterious and awesome mental pictures in the Revelation is that of Rev.9:16 –the two hundred million horsemen. What does this mean? Who are they and what do they represent? Do not worry, the Lord through His restoring prophet comes through for us. Let us look at this subject.

“And the four angels were loosed, which were prepared for an hour, and a day, and a month, and a year, for to slay the third part of men. And the number of the army of the horsemen were  two hundred thousand thousand: and I heard the number of them. And thus I saw the horses in the vision, and them that sat on them, having breastplates of fire, and of jacinth, and brimstone: and the heads of the horses were as the heads of lions; and out of their mouths issued fire and smoke and brimstone.” (Rev. 9:15-17)

There has been many theories put forth and our own S.D.A church is without exception. But the message gives us warning and counsel in regards to privately interpreting subjects such as the two hundred million horsemen —

“Ever since John recorded this imposing symbolization, church history has repeatedly throughout her pages had to make the entry that every attempt made to unlock its mystery has but resulted the more in barricading it with mysticism and confusion.  It is necessary, therefore, in clearing the mysticism, first of all to find

THE REASON FOR THE CONFUSION.

   The very fact that nineteen centuries of prying at the subject to open it up has only made it the more impenetrable, is the strongest possible evidence that God controls the Scriptures and reveals Them only at the divinely appointed time.  The truth of this statement is conclusively substantiated by the angel’s words: “I will shew thee that which is noted in the scripture of truth: and there is none that holdeth with me in these things, but Michael your Prince.” Dan. 10:21.

   And “when He, the Spirit of Truth, is come,” says Christ, in broader statement of this same truth, “He will guide you into all truth.” John 16:13.

   Having been put forth prematurely and without the prompting of the Spirit of Truth, human efforts have accordingly failed to discover and explain the truth of “the trumpets.”  And no scripture ever being unfolded without Inspiration, the expositions of uninspired minds are hence of private interpretation, in forewarning of which the Bible says: “….no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.” 2 Pet. 1:20.

So before a person can climb the ladder of Truth, he must first of all free himself from erroneous theories, which keep him bound in darkness.  And to loose himself from such weights of error so as to reach the top step of the ladder of Truth, he must carefully investigate and “prove all things” in

Open-Mindedness.

   “Do not read the Word in the light of former opinions; but, with a mind free from prejudice, search it carefully and prayerfully.  If, as you read conviction comes, and you see that your cherished opinions are not in harmony with the Word, do not try to make the Word fit these opinions.  Make your opinions fit the Word.  Do not allow what you have believed or practiced in the past to control your understanding.” — Messages to Young People, p. 260.

   This prime necessity urgently confronts those who have been disposed to accept, as unquestionable Bible truths, theories which are the results of

Adding To and Taking From the Scriptures.

   Any explanation of a prophecy which adds to or takes from any part of relevant scripture in order to harmonize the interpretation, can only be false. When the Spirit of God interprets the Scriptures, He does not in any way need to alter any part of Them in order to make the explanation fit that which is being unfolded.  When, moreover, the true interpretation of a prophecy is made, it always contains a lesson of present truth “adapted to the necessities of God’s people” (The Great Controversy, p. 609) at the time the scripture is revealed.  Knowing this, Satan is continually

Paving the Way for Sinning Against the Holy Ghost.”

No one is lost for believing a false interpretation of a prophecy before the truth of it is revealed, provided the false interpretation does not draw him away from some other truth.  Such individuals, however, are in great danger because, as history reveals, very few who become thus involved in error are willing to humble themselves by renouncing their errors and accepting the truth when it is made known.  They are consequently in constant peril of sinning against the Holy Ghost.  And being acutely aware of this, Satan misinterprets the prophecies before they are divinely revealed.  He realizes full well that many, unwilling to be corrected and to exchange their errors for revealed truth, will thereby be led to eternal ruin.  All-important, therefore, is the need that the student of the truth fortify himself with all honesty and humility as the light of truth is now turned searchingly on

Popular Theories.

(Tract 5, p.4-7)

Now we shall look at what our church has supported even though it is deceiving error. This will enable us to see the folly of such understanding that we as Adventists have been exposed to through the years on our subject. Let us read —

“To begin with, the reader’s attention is called to Elder Uriah Smith’s book, originally entitled Thoughts on Daniel and The Revelation, and later Daniel and The Revelation, in which is explained, among other subjects, the subject of “the seven trumpets.”  Here one will notice that Elder Smith is not the original author of the exposition of the trumpets.  The originators were Messrs. Keith, Clark, Barnes, et al.  “Thus far,” says Elder Smith, “Keith has furnished us with illustrations of the sounding of the first five trumpets.” — Daniel and The Revelation, p. 506.

   Then further in the same chapter, and in explanation of Revelation 9:17, we read: “As the Turks discharged their firearms on horseback, it would appear to the distant beholder, that the fire, smoke and brimstone issued out of the horses’ mouths, as illustrated by the accompanying plate.” — Id., p.510.  “Barnes thinks this was the case,” remarks Elder Smith; “and a statement from Gibbon confirms this view.” — ld., p. 510, footnote.

   Thus, plainly, the interpretation of the seven trumpets, as it is found in Thoughts on Daniel and the Revelation, was not originated by the Seventh-day Adventist denomination.  But their placing upon it their endorsement makes it appear as Seventh-day Adventist doctrine.  In other words, the theories of uninspired men having the S.D.A. stamp of approval, are made to appear to the S.D.A. laity as genuine S.D.A. Bible doctrines.  This goes to show that the majority of Seventh-day Adventists, right along with others, do not ask, “Is it true, — in harmony with God’s word? but, By whom is it advocated?” — Testimonies to Ministers, p.106.  And if the theory comes through a popular channel, they as a rule unquestionably accept it!

   A fair example is their unhesitatingly applauding such manipulations as rationalizing “the heads of lions” (in the symbolism of Revelation 9:17) into heads of Arabian horses, and the serpent-like tails (Rev. 9:19), into common horses’ tails (as evidenced by the accompanying illustration) in order to connect the trumpets with the battles of the Turks!

   But even worse, they unhesitatingly agree that the “fire,” “smoke,” and “brimstone” did not issue, as John saw them, from the lion-like mouths, but rather from a gun in the hand of a Turk!

   Their accepting these additions and subtractions to and from Holy Writ, a practice condemned by the Scriptures (Rev. 22:18, 19), shows that they are victims of a faulty vision, which causes them to think themselves right when they are all wrong (Testimonies, Vol. 3, pp. 252, 253).

   Their subscribing to such a practice, moreover, undermines faith in the Bible, for if the Revelator be wrong in one instance, then can he not be mistaken in other instances also?  And if we cannot depend upon the book of The Revelation

 

just as it reads, then how can we put confidence in any of the Bible?  And if inspired prophets cannot declare the positive truth of what they see, then how can uninspired students of their writings declare it?  So, those who learn “to give an answer to every man that asketh…a reason of the hope that is in” (1 Pet. 3:15) them, will have no trouble answering  the question:

Did John See Correctly?

   True, the seer of Patmos was an erring human being like ourselves, but the one who dictated His writings — the great and infallible I Am, Overseer and Proof Reader of the Scriptures — was there to see that John made a faithful record of what he saw, for the exact truth of the symbolism means our very life.  Indeed, it is not possible that the Lord would jeopardize our salvation by displaying the symbolism so far removed from John’s sight that he could not accurately see and record it, and yet expect to save us by it.

   If John failed to see correctly the symbols in the vision, as these supposed-to-be men of learning and experience speciously explain, then does it not imply that God is indifferent as to whether or not He reveals in a misleading way truth which is essential to our salvation?  If not, and if John was wrong, why, then, did not God correct him?  Was it impossible for Him here to correct His prophet?

   “The second angel,” says the Revelator, “poured out his vial upon the sea; and it became as the blood of a dead man: and every living soul died in the sea.” Rev. 16:3.

If John could not, as is contended, see exactly where the “fire,” “smoke,” and “brimstone” came from, then how could he see that “every” creature, as he says in the words just quoted, died in the bottom  of the sea?  Which condition is the more difficult to see with exactness?

   The acceptance and the teaching of such interpretations  is signboard evidence that there is today gross darkness throughout the church, enveloping both the laity and the watchmen who claim to be the “men of experience” mentioned in Testimonies, Vol. 5, p. 293, and elucidated in Tract No. 4, The Latest News for Mother Revised Edition, pp. 32-35.  These men, though exceedingly “unskilful in the Word,” as is seen from the foregoing observations, forbid that anything new in which they see no light, be brought before the people. 

And despite the fact that such utterly unlawful and light-obscuring restrictions are devised to keep the people forever in their errors, the laity nevertheless accept them without question, and esteem those who devise them as wise and true friends.  And all who refuse to be bound by such restrictions  are “cast out” (Isa. 66:5), while multitudes who disbelieve the Spirit of Prophecy are retained,  and other multitudes of like unbelief are accepted as members in approved standing!  Thus is reenacted the outstanding sin of the Jews, which called forth from the lips of the Saviour the piercing pronouncement:

“If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!” Matt. 6:23. (Tract 5, p.7-13)

Ok let us now turn to the truth of the matter —

“Rev. 9:15, first clause. “And the four angels were loosed.”

   The execution of the command, “Loose the four angels,” meaning to set the church free from her captivity in Babylon, resulted in her being liberated from her long bondage to the tyranny of church-state rule, and in the Bible’s being restored to God’s people, so that they might study and worship in fear and in favor of no man, and in accountability only to their conscience and to their God.  In the consequent dissolution of the church-state union, the “four angels” were loosed.(Tract 5, p.81)

   Rev. 9:15, last part. “…which were prepared for an hour, and a day, and a month, and a year, for to slay the third part of men.”….

The marginal rendering gives the preposition “at” for the preposition “for,” making the verse read: “At an hour, and a day, and a month, and a year.”  Still more exactly rendered, it would read: “At an hour, at a day, at a month, and at a year.”  Thus are designated four points in time “at” which the four angels were to prepare “for to slay the third pan of men.”  And as the “third part” in the trumpets represents, as we have seen, those who reject God’s appeals to them to repent and be saved, then, accordingly, the angels’ preparing themselves on four successive occasions for the eventual execution of death upon “the third part of men,” shows that the men are to reject a four-phase (four-doctrine) message, each phase being revealed successively:

   (1) The only revelation of truth pertaining to and coming “at an hour” is the proclamation of the angel’s announcement: “Fear God, and give glory to Him; for the hour of His judgment is come.” Rev. 14:7.

   (2) The only revelation of truth pertaining to and coming “at a day” is the warning of “the day of vengeance” (Isa. 63:4), “the great and dreadful day of the Lord,” which is to be heralded by the promised “Elijah the prophet.” Mal. 4:5; Testimonies  to Ministers, p. 475.

   (3) The only revelation pertaining to and coming “at a month” is “the latter rain in the first month” (Joel 2:23) — the light of the angel who is to lighten the earth with his glory (Rev. 18:1; Early Writings, pp. 277, 278).  Then “afterward,” says the Lord, “I will pour out My Spirit upon all flesh.” Joel 2:28.  Glorious prophetic promise, it envisages the power that God is to bestow upon His messengers who are to proclaim  the message that is revealed in the time “of the latter rain.”  “At the right time” says the Spirit of Prophecy, “He sends His faithful messengers to do a work similar to that of Elijah.” — Testimonies, Vol. 5, p. 254. (For further study on the latter rain, see The Shepherd’s Rod, Vol. 2, pp. 256, 257.)

   (4) And, finally, the only revelation pertaining  to and coming “at a year,” and preparing the four angels “for to slay the third part of men” is says the Lord, “the year of My redeemed.” Isa. 63:4.  And this “year” at which His people are redeemed is, of course, the time of the sealing and of the deliverance of the 144,000, — those who are redeemed who escape the slaughter decreed in Ezekiel 9.  Of these, the Lord says: “I will set a sign among them, and I will send those that escape of them unto the nations,…to the isles afar off, that have not heard My fame, neither have seen My glory; and they shall declare My glory among the Gentiles. And they shall bring all your brethren for an offering unto the Lord out of all nations

…to My holy mountain Jerusalem,…in a clean vessel into the house of the Lord.” Isa. 66:19, 20.

   These four messages prepare the four angels “for to slay the third part of men” — all who fail to receive into their lives the saving truth of the gospel as revealed in the four messages.  They are, to recapitulate, (1) those who close their ears to the proclamation of the judgment, which is revealed “at an hour”; (2) those who heed not the solemn warning of the day of God’s vengeance, which is revealed “at a day”; (3) those who receive not the latter rain, which comes “at a month”; and (4) those who do not join “His redeemed”  (the 144,000), who are sealed “at a year.”  All these who fail to make the needful preparation for gloryland after the truth is proclaimed to them, shall perish at the command of the angelic horsemen whose army numbers “two-hundred thousand thousand.” (Tract 5, p.87-89)

Rev. 9:16-19. “And the number of the army of the horsemen were two hundred thousand thousand: and I heard the number of them.  And thus I saw the horses in the vision, and them that sat on them, having breastplates of fire, and of jacinth, and brimstone: and the heads of the horses were as the heads of lions; and out of their mouths issued fire and smoke and brimstone.  By these three was the third part of men killed, by the fire, and by the smoke, and by the brimstone, which issued out of their mouths.  For their power is in their mouth, and in their tails: for their tails were like unto serpents, and had heads, and with them they do hurt.”

   These verses immediately evoke the question Who are these “horsemen” and “horses,” numbering  200,000,000 each, “the army” which is to “slay the third part of men”?

   In answering this question, it is to be remembered that likewise the “four angels” were to “slay a third part of men,” also that they symbolize the fourfold message brought to view in preceding  paragraphs.  Unmistakably, therefore, the “army”  of “horses” is figurative of the workers who proclaim the final message.

   That the symbol, horses, is correctly interpreted to represent gospel workers is further borne out by Zechariah 14:20.  There, horses are used to symbolize preachers, those who sound “the bells” — the alarm of warning, the message of salvation.  Like the “locusts,” therefore, they represent the messengers of God, but under different  circumstances. (For more ample treatment of this  symbolical meaning of the horses, read Tract No. 2, The Warning Paradox of Zechariah 6.)

   So as the horses are representative of gospel messengers, and as they are controlled and guided by their riders (divine beings), then the “horsemen,” it automatically follows, are figurative  of the angelic host who lead and direct the saints in their work of proclaiming the message and, subsequently, in killing the third part of men who reject it.  But since riders, not horses, do the killing when engaged in battle, these supernatural beings, the angelic horsemen, are the ones who actually do the slaying.  Hence, their having “breastplates of  fire [protection of the Spirit], and of jacinth, and brimstone.”

   What, then, we may ask, is the “power” of the horses?  These 200,000,000 horses, we have learned, symbolize a great army of gospel workers, from whose lips go a message which means life or death.  That, therefore, must be the power in their mouth.  Consequently, the “fire,” “smoke,” and “brimstone,” which issue “out of their mouths,” are figurative of the message which they proclaim: the power of the Holy Spirit (the “fire”), the sacrifices of Christ (“the smoke”), and the destructive judgments of God (“the brimstone”).  By this three-fold message “was the third part of men killed.” Rev. 9:18.

“The nation and kingdom that will not serve thee shall perish; yea, those nations shall be utterly wasted.” Isa. 60:12.

   “Lift ye up a banner,” saith the Lord, “upon the high mountain [God’s holy church], exalt the voice [the proclamation of the gospel] unto them, shake the hand, that they may go into the gates of the nobles.  I have commanded My sanctified ones [the ministry — “two hundred thousand thousand”  “horses”], I have also called My Mighty ones [the angelic host — “two hundred thousand thousand horsemen”] for Mine anger, even them that rejoice in My highness.  The noise of a multitude [the army of Revelation 9:16] in the mountains, like as of a great people; a tumultuous noise of the kingdoms of nations gathered together: the Lord of hosts mustereth the host of the battle.  They come from a far country, from the end of heaven, even the Lord, and the weapons of His indignation, to destroy the whole land.

   “Howl ye; for the day of the Lord is at hand; it shall come as a destruction from the Almighty.  Therefore shall all hands be faint, and every man’s heart shall melt: and they shall be afraid: pangs and sorrows shall take hold of them; they shall be in pain as a woman that travaileth: they shall be amazed one at another; their faces shall be as flames.  Behold, the day of the Lord  cometh, cruel both with wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate: and He shall destroy the sinners thereof out of it. 

For the stars of heaven and the constellations thereof shall not give their light: the sun shall be darkened in his going forth, and the moon shall not cause her light to shine.  And I will punish the world for their evil, and the wicked for their iniquity; and I will cause the arrogancy of the proud to cease, and will lay low the haughtiness of the terrible.  I will make a man more precious than fine gold; even a man than the golden wedge of Ophir.  Therefore, I will shake the heavens, and the earth shall remove out of her place, in the wrath of the Lord of hosts, and in the day of His fierce anger.” Isa. 13:2-13.

   “And Elisha prayed, and said, Lord, I pray Thee, open his eyes, that he may see. And the Lord opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and, behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha.” 2 Kings 6:17.

   If our eyes were opened as were the eyes of “the young man,” we, too, would see an angelic host round about the “Elishas” of today.

   And now as to what swelled the number of preachers from 144,000 to 200,000,000, the Lord says: “I will also take of them [of those whom the 144,000 shall bring from “all nations,” after the fulfillment of Isaiah 66:16 — the purification of the church] for priests and for Levites.” Isa. 66:21.  The very fact of such a multitude of workers speaks for itself that they are engaged in reaping the harvest of the world.

   Here in pledged word, God foretells in clearest tenor that many of those whom He brings into the church after the purification, will join the 144,000 in proclaiming the message to the whole world, when the earth is lightened with the glory of the angel (Rev. 18:1).

Then shall “the sons of strangers,” says the Lord, “build up thy walls, and their kings shall minister unto thee: for in My wrath I smote thee…. The sons also of them that afflicted thee shall come bending unto thee; and all they that despised thee shall bow themselves down at the soles of thy feet; and they shall call thee, The city of the Lord, The Zion of the Holy One of Israel…. Violence shall no more be heard in thy land, wasting nor destruction within thy borders;  but thou shalt call thy walls Salvation, and thy gates Praise.  The sun shall be no more thy light by day; neither for brightness shall the moon give light unto thee: but the Lord shall be unto thee an everlasting light, and thy God thy glory.” Isa. 60:10, 14, 18, 19.

   “And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith the Lord, two parts therein shall be cut off and die; but the third shall be left therein. And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on My name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is My people: and they shall say, The Lord is my God.” Zech. 13:8, 9.

   Two parts lost and one part saved make three parts in all.  The “one third” (Rev. 9:15) shall be slain by fire, smoke, and brimstone (Rev. 9:18), before probation closes.  The remaining wicked who are slain by the seven last plagues (Rev. 16) and by the brightness of His coming (2 Thess. 2:8), after probation closes, make the other third. The saved, the last third, are “the third…left therein.” Zech. 13:8. (Tract 5, p.89-95)

So there we have it the two hundred million horses are gospel workers. The horsemen, the riders, are the angelic host, divine beings, guiding them in proclaiming the message and then executing God’s judgment upon the wicked. Wow, this packs a “truth punch” doesn’t it? The Loud Cry of the 144,000 will soon produce 200 million gospel preachers!

Although we now have a little over 7 Billion people on our planet, the 144,000 and the gospel workers will reap a harvest known as the “Great Multitude” which no man could number (Rev. 7:9). What a time to be alive and witness what God’s full Spirit poured upon His vanguard the “first fruits” and His “great army of gospel workers” can do.

Let us thank the Lord for our understanding of this most mysterious and long-held confusing topic. His promise to restore “all things” including the full truth of the Scriptures is a real blessing for those of us interested in prophecy.

What Makes One Eligible?

July 29, 2017

OPENING PRAYER THOUGHT

   I shall read from The Mount of Blessing, pg. 155, beginning with the second paragraph.

   M.B. pp. 155, 156 — “The very first step in approaching God is to know and believe the love that He has to us; for it is through the drawing of His love that we are led to come to Him.

   “The perception of God’s love works the renunciation of selfishness.  In calling God our Father, we recognize all His children as our brethren.  We are all a part of the great web of humanity, all members of one family.  In our petitions we are to include our neighbors as well as ourselves.  No one prays aright who seeks a blessing for himself alone.

   “‘Which art in heaven.’  He to whom Christ bids us look as our Father,’ ‘is in the heavens; He hath done whatsoever He hath pleased.’  In His care we may safely rest, saying, What time I am afraid, I will trust in Thee.'”

   What does the reading instruct us to pray for? — For an appreciation of God’s love and for better understanding of Him; for the right understanding of what it means to pray the Lord’s prayer; for wisdom to know why we address God as our Father, why we are members of one family, brethren of one household; for grace to remember to pray not for ourselves only but for our neighbors, and even for our enemies.

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WHAT MAKES ONE ELIGIBLE?TEXT OF ADDRESS BY V.T. HOUTEFF,MINISTER OF DAVIDIAN 7TH-DAY ADVENTISTSSABBATH, SEPTEMBER 21, 1946MT. CARMEL CHAPELWACO, TEXAS  

A number of brethren have written to me from time to time, wanting to know what makes them eligible to receive the Seal of God.  Some want to know whether they will be sealed by doing this or by doing that.  Others want to know whether they will be left without the seal by not doing this or not doing the other.

   The questions are indeed very timely and commendable.  Such vital questions deserve answers as concrete as are the questions themselves.  And who can give a more concrete answer than those who have gone before us, those whose duties were similar to ours, those who were passing through a similar experience, those who traveled the same road that we are traveling, those who were preparing themselves for the Kingdom as are we.

   In whom do we find such a parallel? — In no others than those who left Egypt and started for the promised land.  No, in none others.  They are our only type.  Says Inspiration: “Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come.” (1 Cor. 10:11.)  Their duties, therefore, are our duties, and their failures should be our stepping stones to success.  Thus it is that the deeds of those who entered into the promised land must be our

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deeds, and if we are to be sealed, then the deeds of those who failed to enter therein, we must shun as completely and as quickly as we would shun a lion’s den.

   We are now to find out why some of them went into the promised land, and why others did not go in, for this is what Inspiration commands us to do.  This scripture implies that if the experiences of ancient Israel had not been for ensamples, they would never have been written.  How important, then, that we diligently study them.  Yes, in order for us to know what we must do or must not do to receive the seal and to enter into the Promised Land, we must examine the deed of both those who entered it and of those who were left out of it.

   Let us begin our examination by starting with Moses, with the human agent, the visible leader of the movement.  Reared in the courts of Pharaoh, he received the highest education the world then offered.  And having understood that he was the one to free his brethren from Egyptian bondage, he felt quite capable for the job.

   You remember the story of how he started out to deliver them although he was not yet told to do so.  He killed an Egyptian, fell into a quarrel with one of the Hebrews, and then fled for his life.  So it was that in Midian he obtained a job, became a shepherd, and married his employer’s daughter.  During those forty years of shepherd’s life he forgot the Egyptian language, and with it the Egyptian learning.  In its place, though, he learned to tend well to sheep.  He therefore dismissed from his mind the idea of ever delivering the people of God from their Egyptian bondage.  Then it was that God saw him strong and well able, and commanded him to go back to Egypt and to bring

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out of it His groaning people.  You recall that Moses protested against the idea and argued that he had failed at his first attempt, the time he was young and well-informed and that at that late hour of his life he was not trying again, that he could no longer even speak the language.  After a prolonged conversation God removed his objections by promising to give him his brother, Aaron, to be his spokesman, and Moses finally consented to return to Egypt.

   There with his shepherd’s rod he performed many signs and wonders before both the Egyptians and the Hebrews.  And you remember what took place the night of the Passover, the night before they left Egypt: Moses had proclaimed throughout the land that in every dwelling where no blood was found on the doorpost, that very night the firstborn in each such dwelling would die.

   Those who disobeyed the Divine injunction, were, on the day following busily moaning and burying their dead, while those who obeyed the command were joyously and orderly marching out of the cities.  Yes, only those who were able to take orders were made free from slavery.  It is, therefore, prerequisite that we learn to take orders if we are to receive the seal of God in our foreheads.

   Let us not forget, though, that the children of Israel left Egypt with great zeal and high hopes.  But when they saw the Red Sea ahead of them, and Pharaoh’s army behind them, they were filled with consternation.  They saw themselves in a death trap although they were at the brink of another marvelous deliverance.  Then they turned on Moses and accused him of bringing them to the sea, of making their escape from their enemies absolutely impossible.

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   Humanly viewing the situation, they were in a precarious predicament.  In that moment they forgot their miraculous deliverance from Pharaoh’s taskmasters and their eyes closed to the wondrous cloud by day and pillar of fire by night that had led them all the way.  As they saw it, the evidence against Moses’ ability to lead them safely was overwhelming.  Insofar as they were concerned, the whole venture appeared doomed to failure.  Their hopes of going ahead or of even going back left them, and all because they thought Moses, not God, was their deliverer!  How shortsighted, unstable, doubting, and forgetful human beings are!  Experience in the gospel work has taught me that God’s people of today have the same tempter to contend with, and similar temptations to overcome if they are to receive the seal of God.

   What a great difference would there have been had the Israelites only believed that God, not Moses, was their Leader, that that which appeared to be their death trap, was their door of hope.  Let their experience teach us to remember that God is either leading us altogether or not at all, that His ways are not; our ways, and that what may appear to be our greatest obstacle, may actually turn out to be our greatest blessing.

   Israel’s real danger, we now see, was not in what Moses did, but in their unbelief of God’s having the reins in His hands, in not knowing that His ways are beyond finding out — contrary to ours.  They failed to see that God could again and again perform miracle after miracle to deliver them from their enemy’s hand, that He could dry the ocean as easily as He could flood the earth.

   Having their failures before us, we should make

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them our stepping stones to success.  Let us therefore wholeheartedly believe that God is in charge of our salvation, of our lives and of our death, too.  That He is able to take us to safety even if the earth should drop out of space, that we cannot die if He wants us alive, and that we cannot live if He wants us dead.  Let us ever bear in mind that we of ourselves know nothing about God’s plans except as told through His appointed servants, the prophets, and as we witness them day by day.  If we daily walk with God, if we commit all to Him, then the responsibility is all His.

   God, in His wisdom, brought Israel to the Red Sea for their own good, and though they could not see it His way, He nevertheless for His Name’s sake divided the sea, took them safely across, and at the same time, by the same miracle, He destroyed their enemies!

   Had Moses been as doubtful of God’s power and leadership as were the people that were with him, what effect would his rod have had as he struck the sea with it? — None whatsoever.  If the Judgment of the Infinite were the same as the judgment of the finite, then Pharaoh’s army would have either killed or enslaved Israel anew.

   Their mighty deliverances should, therefore, forever establish our confidence in God, and should stand as everlasting memorials that the wisdom of men is foolishness with God, and that faith in Him does actually remove mountains and seas, too.

   Notwithstanding these ensamples, though, men still expect God to work in accordance with their judgment, and that is why sometimes He uses children in

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His work instead of wise and prudent men.

   The Hebrew host well knew that they were led to the sea by following the cloud by day and the pillar of fire by night.  Yet none of these wonders seemed to have made any lasting impression on them.  There is a danger that we, too, may forget the way the Lord has led us.

   After Israel crossed the sea, and after the sea closed in on their enemies, they all sang and gave God the glory, but though Pharaoh’s army and the sea were no longer objects of fear but of interest, their trials, doubts, and fears were not yet at an end: Almost immediately after they saw the sea behind and the desert ahead they began to recriminate Moses for having brought them into the desert to starve there for want of water and food.  It never entered their minds that if God can dry the sea, He can certainly flood the desert and make it blossom as a rose.  Notwithstanding their doubts and their moanings God again performed an even greater miracle: He caused water to gush out of the rock and He brought manna from Heaven!

   Today as in Moses’ day many are duplicating the sins of that people: Some are all on fire on day, and all on ice the next.  Others praise God to the top of their voices while their ship is smoothly sailing, but when the sea becomes rough and the waves start beating against them, then they see only a man at the wheel and rather than expecting God to calm the sea they begin to hunt for a jumping off place.  Still others are constantly trying to promote themselves by continual fault-finding against the ones that bear the whole burden of the load.  So it is that there must be among us today — antitypical doubters, complainers

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office seekers and faultfinders, admitting one great truth one day and forgetting it the next day — yet expecting to be sealed with the seal of God and to stand with the Lamb on Mt. Zion!

   The Lord fed His ancient people with Angel’s food, the kind their work and climate required.  He delivered it fresh daily, and it did not cost them one cent.  All they had to do was to bring it into their tents and to eat it.  But they disliked the manna, and wished they were back in Egypt eating from its flesh pots, “the leeks, and the onions, and the garlick.”  In their eyes, Moses was the greatest of sinners, and they blamed him for every trial of their faith.  Had God given them something other than manna, they would have been just as dissatisfied with it because an evil spirit was in them.  Let us gladly and with thanks eat and drink what the Lord gives us and when He gives it to us.

   You recall that by craving flesh food they made the situation unbearable for Moses.  So, to their great surprise quail filled the camp, and the multitude carried them into their tents.  But at what a cost!  Thousands of them died even while the flesh was yet between their teeth.  Then they understood that the manna was the better food.  It was a great lesson, but an expensive one.  What about us Vegetarians?

   Their murmuring, however, did not end even then.  They found something else to murmur about.  They grew jealous of Moses and of Aaron.  “They are taking too much on themselves,” the office seekers complained.  “We are just as much favored of God as are Moses and Aaron.  God speaks with us as much as He speaks with them,” they said.  And who were the chief complainers? — The princes of the nations, the

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men who were the most capable, the very ones who should have known better.  Those who could have been the greatest help to Moses became the biggest hindrance to him.  They wanted Aaron’s office; they wanted Moses’ office.  They refused to be satisfied with anything less.  The Lord Himself got nowhere with them.  The only thing He could do was to cause the earth to swallow them.  Thus in one day thousands — practically all the so-called wise — fell into the bowels of the earth.  Are we, too, seeking office by which to exalt self and are we, too, endeavoring to usurp the seat of the Spirit of Truth?

   Finally, the emancipated children of Israel came to the borders of the promised land.  And though they had witnessed great miracles right along, yet they did not believe that God could procure the land for them!  They had seen that He was able to deliver them from Pharaoh’s brick yards, to take them dryshod through the sea, to destroy their enemies, to give them food and water in the desert where there was none to be had, yet they did not believe that He was able to take the land for them and that He could finish what He had started!

   There are thousands today who are doing virtually the same when they say, “Isaiah, chapter 2, Micah, chapter 4, Jeremiah, chapter 31 and Ezekiel, chapters 36 and 37 will never be fulfilled.”  It was those who were of age, those who should have known better, that started the ball rolling down hill to destruction.  The youth, of course, must have echoed the murmurings of their elders, but the Lord did not hold it against them.  And in order to salvage the youth, God had to bury all their murmuring parents except the two faithful, trusting men who protested against the evil report of the other ten spies.  Mark you, every adult that

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left Egypt, except Caleb and Joshua, had to be buried before the youth could cross the Jordan!  Why? — Because though God did take them with ease out of Egypt, He could not get Egypt out of them.  Are you still wondering why the prophet Elijah must “turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers”? (Mal. 4:6.)

   Christians often think that the Israelites were very wicked and unruly people, but after having their experiences to profit by, think how much worse we would be if we do as they did!  If we do no better than they, how can we expect to be eligible for the seal and for the Kingdom since they were not eligible?

   In the very prime of life, Moses thought himself capable of delivering the children of Israel.  But Providence said: “You are not fit for the work, come out and I will make you fit.”  And out Moses went.

   He did not need Pharaoh’s training in order to do God’s work.  It was a hindrance to him!  Why?  Because it made him self-sufficient, independent of God.  Such a person would be the right one to lead God’s people away from Him and into sin, but the wrong one to lead them to God and away from sin.

   How true the statement in Testimonies, Vol. 5, pg. 80: “…In the last solemn work few great men will be engaged.  They are self-sufficient, independent of God, and he cannot use them.  The Lord has faithful servants, who in the shaking, testing time will be disclosed to view.”

   God can help only those who know that they are unequal to their task, those who know that they need His help.  So, then, those who think that they can do wonders

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are the very ones who can do nothing but harm.

   Plainly, those whom God is to use in His final work, in the time of the end, are not to be anything like the Egyptian crown prince, not anything like the learned Moses.  Those who can learn to keep and feed sheep well and to readily take orders, are the ones who can be taught how to keep and feed God’s people.

   Moses’ wife was the only Ethiopian in the entire company.  For this reason some thought they were superior to her.  They thought that Moses had committed the unpardonable sin by marrying out of his nation, as though race had anything to do with making people superior or inferior.  Moses’ own sister, Miriam, was caught in that sin.  There she was, trying to break up his family, yet Moses prayed for her recovery when she was stricken with leprosy.

   Who went into the promised land? — All but the murmurers.  Do you suppose that you can entertain the same spirit of murmuring and complaining, and in spite of it receive the seal? — How absurd the very thought!  How unfair it would be for a just God to destroy the disobedient of that day, but to save the disobedient of this day.

   What made one group eligible to cross the Jordan? — It was their trust in God, knowing that He was their Chief Leader.  They recognized Moses and Joshua as the ones through whom God was communicating with them.  They did not look upon them as being anyone other than who they actually were.  They were satisfied with their lot.  They took orders as the orders were given.  So it was that they were the only ones who entered into the land.

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   Having these ensamples before us, this picture to go by, I can confidently tell whether I am headed for the Kingdom or whether I am headed for the bowels of the earth (Rev. 12:16).  And I am sure that you, too, can tell which way you are headed.  The Lord does not require more or less of us than He required of our types.  There is therefore no mystery as to what we must do, and what we must not do to receive the seal of God.

   We need not go into a land of wonderment, need not entertain the idea that we must have a mysterious feeling, exciting emotion, need not wallow in the dust or jump to the ceiling.  No, we need not make fools of ourselves.  All we need to do is be ourselves.  Be calm, decent, respectable, heaven-like beings, endeavoring to do God’s will on earth as it is done in heaven.  We need not make a display of ourselves, but we need to mind our God-given business and to keep our noses out of other people’s business.

   Only when we have done all we can to comply with the requirements of the message for today, not of yesterday, shall we be sealed and stand with the Lamb on Mt. Zion.

   Should we not be glad that while we are being invited to the Kingdom, we are also being told how to get there?  Seeing all these, we must never let our confidence in God wane.  We ought to be stable, firm in everything, lacking nothing.  God’s eleventh-hour servants, says Inspiration, are to be “a great people and a strong; there hath not been ever the like, neither shall be any more after it.” Joel 2:2.  They know what they believe, and believe what they know.  Most important of all, they know that they are led by God, not by man.

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   They are not like the Pharisees who were building monuments in memory of the dead prophets (Matt. 23:29-31) and at the same time were slaying the living ones!  With this light shining on our pathway, Hebrews, chapters 3, 4, 10 and 11 become self-interpreting.

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The Sacred Page

A glory gilds the sacred page,Majestic like the sun;It gives a light to every age,It gives, but borrows none.

The Spirit breathes upon the word,And brings the truth to sight;Precepts and promises affordA sanctifying light.

The hand that gave it, still supplies The gracious light and heat;His truths upon the nations rise,They rise, but never set.

Let everlasting thanks be thine,For such a bright display;It makes a world of darkness shine With beams of heavenly day.–Wm. Cowper (Timely Greetings, Vol. 1, no.7 , p.15)    

Will Elijah Restore All Things? (Part 2 of 2)

July 8, 2017

Image result for picture of elijah

SOP tells us that there is to be more work done by those faithful ones who rest in the graves, let us read–

“Your work, my work, will not cease with this life. For a little while we may rest in the grave, but, when the call comes, we shall, in the kingdom of God, take up our work once more.” (Testimonies, vol. 7, p.17)

What was Ellen White’s referring to as “my work”? Was it playing the harp and visiting other planets? Or was it saving souls for Christ? Yes, this was the only work they knew and did and that work will be taken up once more in the premillennial kingdom, praise the Lord.

The Scriptures also declare this special resurrection of saints —

“And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book. And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.  And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever.” (Daniel 12:1-3)

The above is often not closely examined. But the Elijah prophet showed us that this cannot be about the resurrection solely to fit them for heaven, oh no! This is seen by the fact that some of these resurrected have a work to do– “they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever.”

The message explains this Word of God —

“In these three verses several things clearly stand out: (1) Only those whose names are written in the books are delivered; there are therefore no “foolish” ones among them; (2) Those who are resurrected, however, are mixed, both foolish and wise come up; (3) The statement, “and they that be wise [implying that some be foolish] shall shine as the brightness of the firmament” indicates that these “wise” ones are from among the raised; (4) That if the wise are from among the resurrected and turn many to righteousness, then they must be resurrected in probationary time, in time of salvation.

   “Your work, my work, will not cease with this life.  For a little while we may rest in the grave, but, when the call comes, we shall, in the kingdom of God, take up our work once more.” — Testimonies, Vol. 7, pg. 17.

Dan. 12:4, 10 — “But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased.  Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried; but the wicked shall do wickedly: and none of the wicked shall understand; but the wise shall understand.”

   Now what is meant by being wise? — Let us turn to–

Matt. 25:1-4 — “Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom.  And five of them were wise, and five were foolish.  They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them: but the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps.”

Here we see that the wise are those who take extra oil, extra Truth that lightens the rest of their way.  Finally, it plainly appears that this mixed resurrection is a test; that is, they are all given the opportunity to be wise, to turn many to righteousness, but only a part of them do so.  Some of them again fall into sin, and therefore they awake to shame and everlasting contempt (everlasting disobedience), but the wise awake to everlasting life, never again to die. 

This plainly shows that those who give themselves to wickedness up to the time they die, would not turn to righteousness even though they be given a second chance.  The extra oil (Truth for this time) is what decides each one’s destiny.  The wise shall embrace the “additional Truth,” while the foolish will not.  Sin is indeed a mystery! (Timely Greetings, vol. 2, no. 7, p.14-15)

So we see that there is “work” yet to be done by the faithful whom God will raise up during the “time of trouble” which we as present truth believers know is post Ezekiel 9 church judgment.

Now let’s look at the heart of this post , these are truly bright lights of truth on our subject —

“Ezek. 34:23, 24 — “And I will set up one shepherd over them, and he shall feed them, even My servant David; he shall feed them, and he shall be their shepherd.  And I the Lord will be their God, and My servant David a prince among them; I the Lord have spoken it.”

   The self-centered shepherds against whom the prophet is told to write, are to be replaced by one shepherd, David.  When this takes place God’s people will then have but one shepherd.  This, of course, cannot be Christ Himself, for Inspiration never calls Him David, but rather It calls Him the Son of David.  Since God’s people have always had, and still do have many shepherds, the truth stands out as clear as crystal that the David of verses 23 and 24 is yet to come, and that the shepherds whom Inspiration addresses are in particular those whom David is to succeed.

   Ezekiel, then, was not given a vision of the shepherds in his day, nor of those before his day, but of the shepherds after his day — the day in which God raises up this antitypical David to feed His hungry and neglected flock.  God’s people shall then no longer serve strangers, “But they shall serve the Lord their God, and David their king, whom I will raise up unto them.” Jer. 30:9.  Here we see that not only Ezekiel, but Jeremiah also was given a vision of this same truth.  Yes, all the prophets.

Ezek. 37:24, 25 — “And David My servant shall be king over them; and they all shall have one shepherd: they shall also walk in My judgments, and observe My statutes, and do them.  And they shall dwell in the land that I have given unto Jacob My servant, wherein your fathers have dwelt; and they shall dwell therein, even they, and their children, and their children’s children for ever: and My servant David shall be their prince for ever.”

   Since this is the addition to the “Third Angel’s Message” (“Early Writings,” p. 277) and since it is the message of the hour, consequently the day of the Davidian Kingdom is at hand.  Let us turn to–

Hos. 3:4, 5 — “For the children of Israel shall abide many days without a king, and without a prince, and without a sacrifice, and without an image, and without an ephod, and without teraphim: afterward shall the children of Israel return, and seek the Lord their God, and David their king; and shall fear the Lord and his goodness in the latter days.” (Timely Greetings, Vol. 2, p.14-16)

We see that there is to be “one shepherd” instead of today where there are all kinds of shepherds trying to lead the flock, yet falling abysmally short. The Lord tells us prophetically that the last days shall have a kingdom and a king to rule there, no question about it!

What we also see is that the Lord will “raise up unto them” a king (Jer. 30:9).

As we mentioned the Lord left no stone unturned  and through the Elijah message He tells us what His role is in these pre-millennial kingdom days —

“The Lord will work in no less miraculous a manner now to free His people from being ruled by a worldly organization. He will command the work Himself in the same manner as He did in Moses’ and David’s day.

…In the days of Moses and in the days of David, when the Lord had the work in His Own hands, He spoke to the people through Moses and through David, and thus He ruled. In like manner will He, at this time, rule the work when He takes the reins in His Own hands.

…It is generally understood that when Christ visibly appears, the nations will die by the brightness of His coming, and thus the wicked will have no chance for either the Lord to speak to them or they to speak to Him. Furthermore, according to the parable, He sits on the throne of His glory instead of sitting on the clouds as in 1 Thess. 4:17.

Therefore, the throne of His glory is His kingdom where He, invisible to the nations, sits on the throne and gathers all nations before Him as recorded by the prophet Isaiah also, saying: “And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the Lord’s house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it.” (Isa. 2:2.) (SC, vol. 4, no.10-12, p.6)

It is now clear that the Lord’s promise of restoration is not hard to understand. Once we look at the whole picture, all the references, much as a puzzle it all comes together. And this restoration comes from the “Elijah” who the Lord delegated as the one to do it. It is not to our human understanding that Victor Houteff should do the initial work of Elijah, calling out the sins of the people and church and yet die then come back and finish the work. But the Lord, as SOP noted, will workin a way that will be contrary to any human planning.”

We have heard the argument “Oh no, you take away Christ’s rightful role as the restoration one”. No, “we” do not,  the Lord has spoken that HE wants His Elijah prophet to supervise and command the kingship in the time of restoration, just as He wanted Moses to lead His people.

SOP gives a most beautiful picture of these times of restoration —

“In visions of the night, representations passed before me of a great reformatory movement among God’s people. Many were praising God. The sick were healed, and other miracles were wrought. A spirit of intercession was seen, even as was manifested before the great Day of Pentecost. Hundreds and thousands were seen visiting families and opening before them the word of God. Hearts were convicted by the power of the Holy Spirit, and a spirit of genuine conversion was manifest.

On every side doors were thrown open to the proclamation of the truth. The world seemed to be lightened with the heavenly influence. Great blessings were received by the true and humble people of God. I heard voices of thanksgiving and praise, and there seemed to be a reformation such as we witnessed in 1844.” (Testimonies, vol. 9, p.126)

Some of you may not know much of this man –Victor T. Houteff, but if you are like a detective, a Sherlock Holmes type, searching each piece of the puzzle, you will come to this conclusion we assure you. Stick to the Bible, SOP and the Rod and you’ll have no trouble.

“But when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.” (John 16:13)

Let us remember that the Lord loves His people deeply and has pointed a clear road map for His Seventh-day Adventist people, clear to the kingdom, we only have to follow it.

In closing, there is no doubt that brother Victor Houteff, whom the Lord brought forth to give the Rod message (the Elijah message) and prepare the people for His sudden church coming (Ezek.9), will “take up the work once more” after the church purification, along with Ellen White and all the faithful pioneers. Then it shall surely be as the Lord promised, the Elijah will “restore all things.” 

“. . . a great people and a strong; there hath not been ever the like, neither shall be any more after it, even to the years of many generations. A fire devoureth before them; and behind them a flame burneth: the land is as the garden of Eden before them,  and behind them a desolate wilderness;  yea, and nothing shall escape them.

 The appearance of them is as the appearance of horses; and as horsemen, so shall they run. Like the noise of chariots on the tops of mountains shall they leap, like the noise of a flame of fire that devoureth the stubble, as a strong people set in battle array. Before their face the people shall be much pained: all faces shall gather blackness.

They shall run like mighty men; they shall climb the wall like men of war; and they shall march every one on his ways, and they shall not break their ranks: Neither shall one thrust another; they shall walk every one in his path: and when they fall upon the sword, they shall not be wounded. They shall run to and fro in the city; they shall run upon the wall, they shall climb up upon the houses; they shall enter in at the windows like a thief.

The earth shall quake before them; the heavens shall tremble: the sun and the moon shall be dark, and the stars shall withdraw their shining: And the Lord shall utter his voice before his army: for his camp is very great: for he is strong that executeth his word: for the day of the Lord is great and very terrible; and who can endure it?” (Joel 2:2-11.)


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