Archive for the ‘The Feast Days’ Category

The Real Story behind the Waco Tragedy (Part 3 of 3)

January 19, 2019

Image result for picture branch davidians fire

As we look at the above picture of the official flag* of the Branch Davidians, even the casual observer should notice that foremost symbol within it. Who has the great adversary be known as since the very beginning? (* source — Wikipedia)

As we conclude the final post of this series, we shall come to our primary objective. That is to disclose the real purpose for the Waco disaster. As mentioned we know that the real struggles within our world is that of the spiritual battle that goes on beyond our human sight. This monumental tragic episode indeed was set up with a direct and world-wide purpose by unseen forces. 

The message let’s us know what to expect from our adversary–

“..no prophet of God has ever been welcomed by the church.  On the contrary, each in his time was rejected, abused, and most of them were martyred by the ones to whom they were sent — the very ones who were supposed to be serving God!  Indeed, the Lord Himself paid the same price.  For this very reason we must remember that when the last prophet comes he will have the greatest opposition to meet, for Satan well knows that if he loses now, he loses forever….

…Everything that can be done will be done to distort the Truth and thus distract and dishearten believers and draw their attention to something other than the message of Elijah.

   Thus will be the Devil’s deal while the day of God is approaching, and while Elijah is making the announcement of it as the scroll unrolls and while the prophecies concerning the day of God are being unsealed.   His work and his interpretation of the prophecies for the great day will identify him as the promised Elijah the prophet (“Testimonies to Ministers,” p. 475), and this will enrage the Devil as never before.  Nevertheless, one’s only safety will be in the teaching of Elijah, for there will be no other voice of timely Truth and authority to whom one may turn.  Any others will lead their victims blind-folded into perdition.” (General Conference Special, p.6,7,8)

Rage indeed! In fact, what we have learned was a countermanding  of a wholesome reformation movement that encompassed true Christian values, by  sinister forces using men and women dressed in “robes of light.” Satan plied his trade beginning with Roden and in 1993 his deception work came to a world wide head! The world stood shocked and amazed.

What was the real purpose?

If you haven’t guessed by now, it was to taint and soil the name “Davidian” and thus any message connected to this now disrupted name. Today when one hears the word Davidian , most likely they conjure up fire, guns, Koresh, killings, cults, and all of the horrible occurrences connected with the Waco disaster. Satan has done his job. Those who care not to investigate the whole issue are –snagged and snared!

But why did he focus on the name/movement of the Davidian Seventh-day Adventists?

We are well aware of the close relationship our Lord had with David. In fact the Lord said —

“..I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after Mine own heart, which shall fulfill all My will.” (Acts 13:22)

No doubt Satan  knows well the Davidic Covenant the Lord has made. In this covenant the Lord will do the following–

“And I have been with you wherever you went and have cut off all your enemies from before you. And I will make for you a great name, like the name of the great ones of the earth.” (2 Sam. 7:9)

“When your days are fulfilled and you lie down with your fathers, I will raise up your offspring after you, who shall come from your body, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build a house for my name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever…And your house and your kingdom shall be made sure forever before me. Your throne shall be established forever”” (2 Sam. 7:12-13,16)


“You have said, “I have made a covenant with my chosen one; I have sworn to David My servant. Thy seed will I establish for ever, and build up thy throne to all generations. Selah.”(Psalms 89:3-4)

“For it shall come to pass in that day, saith the LORD of hosts, that I will break his yoke from off thy neck, and will burst thy bonds, and strangers shall no more serve themselves of him: But they shall serve the LORD their God, and David their king, whom I will raise up unto them. Therefore fear thou not, O my servant Jacob, saith the LORD; neither be dismayed, O Israel: for, lo, I will save thee from afar, and thy seed from the land of their captivity; and Jacob shall return, and shall be in rest, and be quiet, and none shall make him afraid.” (Jer 30: 8-10)

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. And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. (Isaiah 2:2-3)

Thus we know Satan knows all about this Davidic kingdom and it’s end time establishment. The Davidian Seventh-day Adventists are the only people on earth today that believe and teach this promised “pre-millenial” kingdom phase. They know it’s purpose will be to gather the “great multitude” from all the earth (Rev. 7:9) to the Lord and his kingdom. The Loud Cry headquarters and restoration of the Lord’s beautiful land. (see Isaiah 11: 6-12).

This setting up of the Davidic kingdom will come shortly after the prophesy of Rev. 12 :15-17 occurs (the SDA church purification), and he will be “enraged”.

“And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood. And the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed up the flood which the dragon cast out of his mouth. And the dragon was enraged with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.” (Rev. 12:15-17)

So how does this all connect with the Seventh-day Adventists? As many of you who have studied the Davidian Seventh-day Adventist history know, the movement came to the SDA church in 1930. Victor Houteff was a devout SDA member and Sabbath school teacher,  who many believe was given the Lord’s Rod message initially introduced in 1930 and 1932 with SRod volumes 1 and 2. Unfortunately this message did not find leadership acceptance (as prophesied in Testimonies to Ministers page 475).

File:Shepherd's Rod volume 1 and 2.JPG

The laity was not as stubbornly against it, however due to the leaders black listing anyone involved with it, members soon began to either boldly accept it , and face the consequences and risk being dis-fellowshipped or ostracized within the church. But the majority leaned upon flesh (Jer. 17:5) and accepted what the leaders told them.

So all this unfortunate negativity already existed within the SDA church prior to the Waco event. But the Waco event helped cement the leaders ideas with an even more negative spin/slander on the Shepherd’s Rod message.

Ironically, the SDA organization hypocritically cries foul when world journalists occasionally report that the Branch Davidians sprung from the SDA church. The connection goes –SDA church, Houteff was a SDA member,  then later became founder of the Branch Davidians.

Let us show you what Satan’s handiwork is through Ben Roden’s Branch movement. Both the world’s heathen and our own SDA church leaders expose their unholy work of deception as you’ll see.

The following article was put out by Texas Monthly News last year —

The forebears of the Branch Davidians were a tiny breakaway band of Seventh-day Adventists who arrived in the Waco area in 1935, after their leader, a Bulgarian immigrant named Victor Houteff, had been expelled from his Los Angeles church…In 1981, a stuttering 22-year-old aspiring rock musician named Vernon Wayne Howell arrived at the new Mount Carmel, and he quickly established himself as a preacher in Houteff’s mold. He seduced the sect’s then-leader, Lois Roden, began displaying a preternatural recall of the Bible, and claimed a special role for himself in the onset of the Judgment. He would eventually change his name to David Koresh, after two Biblical kings. (Texas Monthly News–March 26, 2018)

Wow! Koresh was just like Houteff, in his mold! This goes to show you the lack of depth, the carelessness and utter mindless research that is produced and put out there as authoritative. Notice the subtle connection with Branch Davidians to the original Davidians SDA movement and Victor Houteff. This article is by no means a rare occurrence in the deceptive practice of the world’s heathen journalism. Satan’s well oiled machine doing the intended work!

But much more sinister is from those who should have great light–the Seventh-day Adventist leaders.

Image result for David Mould Koresh Waco

One of the foremost SDA leaders in spreading the adversary’s slander is David Mould (pictured in top left). He is active on YouTube and has a video with Koresh in back ground among the Waco fire backdrop, talking about the Shepherd’s Rod. See the following video link at 6:00 to 11:00 mark.

Then we have Carlton Knott. Another SDA leader who makes videos twisting and slandering the Rod message. You can quickly notice two striking falsehoods. At the 23:16 mark you’ll see a picture of Ben Roden in his video and he tells his followers its Victor Houteff.  At the 27:00 minute mark Knott says “You can call them either Shepherd’s Rod or Branch Davidians..” and the truth twisting goes on from there. Once again Satan’s handiwork in getting the unsuspecting to blur the lines between the two movements.

But by far the worse of all is a former Davidian SDA . Ismael Rodriguez, who turn coated and has a ministry going around the world lambasting the Shepherd’s Rod movement. In fact Stephen Bohr, hired him to come to his organization and produce a 10 part YouTube series “exposing” the Rod movement. But praise the Lord, we were able to address each of the videos showing his lies and distortions, backed up by written Rod references. See the following link for the 10 part rebuttal —

Image result for Ismael Rodriguez picture Shepherd's Rod

https://hearyetherod.wordpress.com/2017/02/26/into-the-vipers-den-part-1-of-5/

Rodriguez likewise tries to connect Koresh with the original Davidian SDA. His history with the movement is shady indeed! The dirty little secret is that he was trying to get a leadership position with one of the head DSDA organizations (Mt. Dale, New York) and failed, so soon after he quit and soon began to disrupt the cause. Now he makes a living from the like of people like Bohr and other SDA churches who hire him.

The above is but a snippet of the slander, mis-representation, lies and falsehoods that the SDA church leaders do in connection to the Davidian Seventh-day Adventist movement.

“The more you are jostled, misapprehended, misstated, misrepresented, the more evidence you have that you are doing a work for the Master, and the more closely you must cling to your Saviour.” (Testimonies, vol. 8, p.130) 

Whether you are SDA or of the world, you can even show yourself an “expert” on Davidian matters by going to one of the foremost encyclopedias in the world –Britannica. They wouldn’t lie now would they?  Take a look —

https://www.britannica.com/biography/Victor-Houteff

Our Lord told us to “leap for joy” when we are degraded by others for His truth —

“Blessed are you when people hate you, when they exclude you and insult you and reject your name as evil, because of the Son of Man. Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven. For that is how their ancestors treated the prophets.” (Luke 6:22-23)

How many times have true original Davidian Seventh-day Adventists been dis-fellowshipped simply because they believe in the Lord’s Rod (Micah 6:9)? One of the reasons is that the SDA authorities/members have bought hook line and sinker the Satanic story of the Branch, Koresh, Houteff situation being one and the same! By God’s grace may you now know the Truth of this situation and carry it with you in your spiritual walk. Because surely the evil ones will have their workers spreading their master’s deceptions and fairy tales in an effort to blind and hinder you from knowing the Truth.

“I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6)

In summary, Satan achieved his goal by leading this off-shoot from the original Davidians , to slander and disrupt the real Davidian cause. Hence today, many SDA and even those in the world connect the word “Davidian” to Branch Davidians, which then leads them to be fearful and skeptical of anything Davidian. Yet let us not forget the Lord’s Truth ALWAYS wins!

Lastly, is it any wonder that to take up this mantle of the Lord’s final message to His SDA church, it is a tough road sometimes, and can bring us to a real need to “cling to Jesus”. Satan is against this cause  because , as mentioned it will doom him. The message of the Davidic kingdom, a kingdom about to take place In Israel with God’s power behind it, will be more than a match for his wiles. He may be able to fool many today but God’s army (Joel chap.2) will soon take over and power pendulum will swing away from Satan.

“And they shall say, This land that was desolate is become like the garden of Eden; and the waste and desolate and ruined cities are become fenced, and are inhabited. Then the heathen that are left round about you shall know that I the LORD build the ruined places and plant that that was desolate: I the LORD have spoken it, and I will do it. (Ezek. 36:35-36)

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The Real Story behind the Waco Tragedy (Part 2 of 3)

January 12, 2019

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NOTE: Due to more information needed to be written we’ve expanded this post series to three parts

Before we begin, let’s recap what we learned from our last report. Victor Houteff established a large 380  plus acres property known as Mt. Carmel in Waco Texas in the mid 1930’s. His group was well organized and from all accounts –true Christian values and teachings were lived, written and preached from there. From there, many believe the Lord’s Rod message (Micah 6:9 and 7:14) was published and distributed as the “leaves of autumn”.

Benjamin Roden became interested in Houteff’s movement, yet soon he was discovered to have lacked normal basic Christian values , such as honesty and integrity. Witnesses came forward to warn of him, especially after Victor died. This was a time when Roden sprang into action, proclaiming himself the “true” Elijah prophet that would not die as Houteff did. In fact he was so sure the Lord was leading him he left for Israel to set up the long awaited pre-millennial kingdom, but found failure.

After Roden had died, some knowledgeable and experienced people such as Davidian SDA leader  A. Anthony Hibbert wrote in his excellent book “Before the Flames” about Roden —

“Even some secular writers referred to Roden as a scholar. He possessed leadership qualities. He had the ability to influence minds, especially in biblical matters. But, while Houteff was alive, no would-be-prophet or leader dared promote his agenda. To the majority, it sooner or later became obvious that persons like Roden were looking for a following. No matter their scholarship , they could not challenge Houteff’s sagacity and theological prowess.

After all, he had secured their knowledge of the original, profound biblical themes. Doctrines that had appeared irrefutable and had caused scholars to muse. Themes that had stirred the Adventist denomination world-wide. Houteff had accomplished the impossible without a formal training in theology or attending any college or university.

Roden would be the first to launch a successful new movement. Within weeks of Houteff’s passing in February, 1955, Roden claimed the prophetic gift…. Unlike Houteff, Roden proclaimed  he would never die. He would finish the work and lead the 144,00 into Palestine. Roden drastically altered “The Shepherd’s Rod” message, adding and subtracting where he felt that it outdated or contradicted his own thinking. He began keeping the Old Testament ceremonial feasts, a practice which many Christians, including Houteff, had condemned.

His most outstanding claim however , was that he was “The Branch.” The “Branch” is an Old Testament, biblical expression for the Messiah.” … Ben Roden has been quoted saying, “get off the old Rod, and come on to the living Branch.” It simply meant that you needed a God-inspired interpreter to help you understand what the Bible or the forerunners wrote. That person was Roden.”(page 12-13, 21)

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(A. Anthony Hibbert)

Despite Roden’s grandiose ideas, he died in 1978. But his movement still proceeded forward despite his unexpected death. Unlike Houteff , who never said he would not die*, Roden was an opportunist at Houteff’s death, seizing the opportunity to win the confidence in those Davidians who were shaken by his untimely death. He saw himself an inspired prophet who thought nothing of thievery/incantation/self exaltation in order to advance his agenda.

Guess who would conveniently fulfill the next “prophet” role? None other than his wife–Lois. The above pink booklet is one of the Branch Davidian “inspired” writings of Lois Roden. (* “A Davidian Testimony”, p.172)

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Lois took the mantle from Ben and she wasted no time in concocting some doozies of her own ,let us read for example some of her theology and reasoning for the Holy Spirit being Mother God and a female being. Her basic idea was just as the original human family existed in Eden, so too there is a heavenly family , God the Father, Holy Spirit the mother and Jesus the Son.

“Mrs. White revealed that there are THREE LIVING PERSONS OF THE GODHEAD, but she was not given light on the GENDER of the THIRD PERSON of the Heavenly Trio. The gender of the Father and Son are clearly taught in symbols throughout the Bible, but the nature of the Holy Spirit has been obscure and the GENDER not pronounced–not definite, “he” and “it” being used alternately as pronouns; wind, fire, water, breath, etc., are used as impersonal terms.

Persons have gender (male and female); therefore, the Bible gives the key to the gender of the Holy Spirit in Romans 1:20. “For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse.”

This Scripture says: “the invisible …Godhead” is “clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made” “from the Creation”….. So, the Creation Story tells us that a man and woman were made in the image of two members of the Godhead (Gen. 1:26,27) (“Let US make”); and that we are without excuse if we do not know there is male and female represented in the Godhead (The Trinity).

It is the Person of the Holy Spirit, (Whose IMAGE was Eve,) Whose “…glory of the uncorruptible God (the Holy Spirit)” was corrupted and CHANGED “into an IMAGE made LIKE TO CORRUPTIBLE MAN” (Rom. 1:23). “And even as they did not LIKE to RETAIN GOD in their knowledge, God gave them over to a REPROBATE MIND (saying that all three members of the Godhead are masculine) to do those things which are not convenient.” Rom. 1:28.

Therefore, God’s admonition to all who are guilty of this corrupt practice of changing the Image of the Holy Spirit to that of corruptible man is: “REPENT YE THEREFORE, and be converted, that yours sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord.” Acts 3:19. “And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.” Eph. 4:30.

In HER name Who is The Branch (Jer. 33:15,16), Lois I. Roden”   (Branch Field Letter, March 27, 1980)

So the movement continued to sail on. New members were brought in. Let’s briefly go back to part one where we talked of Roden being in the Texas court of Bill Logue. Don Adair sheds more light on another revelation of the Roden character.

“During the years from 1962 onward, … the battle for ownership of new Mt. Carmel Center continued in the Texas courts. Of thoses who wanted this property the most was Ben L. Roden. He told the Texas court that he should be the rightful owner of the new Mt. Carmel Center, because  he was Elijah the prophet who would never die! He even testified that he heard a voice from the Lord who said to him, “Brother Ben, you go to Waco and lead my people.”

And he sent a letter to all Davidians that he could (lead them),  telling them to ask the Texas court to apply their tithes  to the purchase of this property… He also wrote, “The Lord has seen fit to overrule and place the option to purchase New Mt. Carmel in our hands.” In the mean time, the Branch Davidians moved onto the property while the battle in the Texas courts continued.

On June 19, 1968 the sheriff was ordered to evict Ben Roden’s group, but they refused to leave. Somehow he gained control of New Mt. Carmel Center; where he setup his Branch headquarters for his office and printing literature. (A Davidian Testimony, p.244, parenthesis ours)

Once again the fruit of the Roden’s character was exposed as rotten. A duly sworn and certified court in Texas had heard the case of ownership of the Mt. Carmel property, which Roden coveted, and had rejected the case for Roden as the rightful owner. True to form of his questionable past actions, he ignored the rule of law and took it by hook and crook. Just as with his habitual thievery, the ends justified the means.

Lois Roden was complicit in all these shenanigans, in fact some witnesses* think she was the real driving force behind Ben. That may be true due to the fact that she did not miss a beat in taking over the leadership mantle of the movement. (*Bro. Saether and Bro. Adair).

But  to add even more troubling matters to the picture, Ben and Lois’ son George (below), became a real thorn in Lois’ side after Ben’s death and stayed that way to Lois’ death (1986).

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Adair explains —

“..the death of Ben Roden did not end his Branch movement, because his wife, Lois Roden, was already teaching her false doctrine in 1977  that the Holy Spirit was feminine, and that women should be ordained as ministers… it was known that his son George Roden expected to take control of new Mt. Carmel as its new prophet, because he faithfully followed his father over the years as his right hand man…But his mother, Lois Roden had other ideas, which I learned from other Davidians. She went to court in Waco to gain control of new Mt. Carmel Center; and because her son George caused a lot of trouble, she filed a court order to keep him off the property.

In spite of the trouble George caused her, she still had control of the Branch Davidians. She told them her husband said she was to take his place as prophetess of her movement….Mrs. Roden said shortly before her husband’s death, she had a vision that the Holy Spirit had a feminine personality.” (Ibid, p.294-295)

The nature of the Holy Spirit is a mystery. Men cannot explain it, because the Lord has not revealed it to them. Men having fanciful views may bring together passages of Scripture and put a human construction on them, but the acceptance of these views will not strengthen the church. Regarding such mysteries, which are too deep for human understanding, silence is golden. {AA 52.1}

Ok, so it is clear that once Ben Roden died , his wife carried on their work. Remember that Satan is too sneaky to be played with and those who do not walk with the Lord in trying to obey His holy Commandments, can hear an impostor’s voice . He found this zealous bright articulate couple with fertile imaginations, both of whom could care less about the basic Christian values of honesty, integrity and Commandment keeping, to do his handiwork and to bring to fruition his ultimate goal.

The adversary’s next move would indeed prove instrumental in his purposes.

Lois Roden meets Vernon Howell (aka David Koresh).

Anthony Hibbert describes Howell and their relationship–

“By 1977, eighteen year old, Vernon, learned to play the guitar and became heavily involved in rock music. He also worked at mechanic shops and garages and did some landscaping and handyman work…the pivotal point of meeting 61 year-old Lois Roden set his sights and changed his life and the lives of others forever…He soon embraced the Branch dogmas and traveled with Roden to various  locations recruiting and shoring up parishioners. By 1983 he was her personal chauffeur and regular bed companion. Rumors testified that they were married… We had a good relationship” said Roden, “until he asked me put his name on the bank account.” (Before the Flames, p.23-24)

He goes on to describe the well-known areas of Howell/Koresh’s life– Rock music, multiple wives, young girl marriages, love of firearms, serial adulterer, habitual smoking and beer, etc. . but when Lois Roden died in 1986, this left Howell on his own to formulate and countermand the Branch theology (although not without a huge struggle with Lois’ son George) and remake it into his own ideas, just as Roden did with Victor Houteff’s original Davidian message. But just like Roden , Koresh was not successful in calling away mainstream Davidian Seventh-day Adventists to their Branch ideas.

Thus we see Satan’s baton passing from one usurper to succeeding ones. Ben, Lois and now Howell would complete his unholy work for all the world to see and achieve his main objective which we are closing in on.

At this point let us review what we have learned. Satan has known since the beginning God’s Word inside and out. Thus he knew very well that the Scriptures pointed to an end time prophet “Elijah” to come to God’s people with a final message.  He knows how to watch for clues, and watch he did! As he watched God’s remnant church the SDA Church, it was when Victor Houteff ( a simple Sabbath School teacher) began to deliver interpretations never before known  nor understood of deep prophecies such as found in Ezekiel, Micah, Isaiah, Jeremiah, and especially Revelation concerning the “great and dreadful day of the Lord”, Satan pounced upon Houteff’s work! He knew he had the man and the movement and went to work.

Ben Roden was spoken to while Houteff was in his most productive years (the 40’s and early 50’s). He was under a car working on it, he said under oath testimony according to judge Logue, when he “heard” the Lord’s voice tell him he must go and lead God’s people. He then began to get involved in Houteff’s movement at the adversary’s leading. But as we have learned rotten fruit is always a poor indicator and clear sign that one is NOT working in concert with the Lord. And most especially not given the Spirit of Truth to write a special message from the Lord.

“Whoever conceals their sins does not prosper, but the one who confesses and renounces them finds mercy.” (Proverbs 28:13)

But Ben was fooled due to his own self exaltation ideas of himself, similar to that of Saul. Satan had found his man and through him would prove successful to a large degree in obtaining his purpose. Once Roden died the wife stepped right up and carried on this work. Once the wife died, Satan’s most useful and close associate–Koresh, would put the nail into the coffin so to speak.

To close out this part two we shall briefly address a issue that may be aroused in some Seventh-day Adventists who do not necessarily believe in the Lord’s Rod message as the Davidian SDA do.

If the Roden’s are looked at as infiltrators and heresy teachers by the Davidian SDA, then by the same token why do the DSDA charge crime against the SDA leaders for labeling the  DSDA as infiltrators and heresy teachers?  After all the DSDA add and subtract to the SDA doctrines just as the Branch added and subtracted to the DSDA message?  Ok, fair point.

First, on the point about Christian character, no one has ever denied nor proven that Victor Houteff was anything but an upright Christian walking in all the light God gave him–dress reform, diet reform, worship reform, strict Sabbath adherence, Commandment keeping and preaching, etc. This goes for all the residents on Mt. Carmel during Houteff’s tenure as leader. Witness after witness supported these sediments, as well as the city folk in Waco who did business with the Mt. Carmel residents as attested in bro. Saether’s memoirs, interview 8 and 9.

On the contrary, as we’ve shown the complete opposite existed for the Rodens. Despite their dogma’s their fruit was often exposed as rotten, thus canceling any “inspiration” from the Lord in any writings or such. The only conclusive evidence is the adversary put them up to it , to snag and snare. Houteff’s message was indeed countermanded and  some indeed were snared, even to this day!

On doctrine, Roden is proven to be outside even mainstream Christian theological understanding, ie feast keeping, let alone apart from the Rod message. On this one salvational issue alone the Rod adherents are in the right to disqualify the Branch movement. Along with Apostle Paul’s numerous counsels, the Rod message clearly states we show “unbelief in Christ” should we keep the feasts as obligatory to honor the Lord today (TG, vol. 2, no. 37, p.12-15).

http://davidiantoday.org/en/document/book/show/2tg37

As far as the Davidian SDA teachings being against the SDA teachings, the Rod clearly shows that it believes in ALL fundamental beliefs as promoted by the SDA (when the Rod fundamental beliefs were written back in 1943). So contrary to the false narrative promoted by some deceiving SDA leaders, the DSDA agree with the FB’s of the SDA church. The difference comes that the DSDA have “supplemental beliefs” based on the understandings of prophecies, which often the SDA are either quiet about , ignore, or give an unbalanced viewpoint on and not supported by weight of evidence (Scripture and SOP).

The Rod message welcomes any and all to investigate those supplemental beliefs and  a) prove them wrong b) provide something better from Scripture  c) or else jump aboard the blazing light of Truth!

So the comparison is not accurate in many respects. The SDA church has no Scriptural basis to accuse the Davidian Seventh-day Adventists of countermanding the SDA  teachings/doctrine. On the contrary they add very substantial revelations of truth , which our Lord called ” extra oil” in His parable of the 10 virgins.

After all it was not Victor Houteff who said “Hear ye the Rod”  it was the Lord who “crieth unto the city” (Micah 6:9 ) .

Those FB’s and supplementals can be found here–

http://davidiantoday.org/en/blog/show/fundamental-beliefs-of-davidian-seventh-day-adventists

Next week we’ll close out with part 3  and show the purpose of this whole fiasco and how it ties into the Seventh-day Adventist church, even to this very day.

“The present attitude of the church is not pleasing to God.  There has come in a self-confidence that has led them to feel no necessity for more truth and greater light.  We are living at a time when Satan is at work on the right hand and on the left, before and behind us; and yet as a people we are asleep.  God wills that a voice shall be heard arousing His people to action.” — Testimonies, Vol. 5, p. 709. (See also Gospel Workers, p. 300.)

The Real Story behind the Waco Tragedy (Part 1 of 2)

January 5, 2019

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Many of us have heard about the horrible Waco events that took place in Waco Texas between February 28 and April 19, 1993. The nation was spellbound as a cult known as Branch Davidians exchanged gun fire with ATF agents, along with Military personnel. The end result was pure disaster and disillusionment.

But unbeknownst to many is the very important “back story” of these events. There is a spiritual aspect of it that needs to be told in order to see the “big picture”. Let us look into this sad part of our American history and find some reasons for it.

In Ephesians 6:12 we read —

“For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”

These tragic actions did not happen by chance, no, it was well orchestrated and led by none other than the great adversary himself. You will soon see why and for what purpose.

Our story begins with a man named Benjamin L. Roden.

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Ben was an auto mechanic and we gain light from a judge by the name of Bill Logue, who presided over some court action that Ben Roden and his family were involved in.

“Brother Ben was an auto mechanic. Also, he was an organic farmer. And he tried unsuccessfully to have an organic farm out there at Elk. Brother Ben was on the stand, and he was—he testified, I don’t know—he was back out in Odessa, and he was underneath some old ’36 Chevrolet or Ford or something, and the Good Lord spoke to him. And I may embellish it a little bit, but the gist of it was that the Good Lord spoke to him and told him to go back to the site, to Elk, and to lead his people, okay?” (Baylor University Institute For Oral History, Memoirs of Bill C. Logue, p.7)

http://digitalcollections.baylor.edu/cdm/compoundobject/collection/buioh/id/2878/rec/1

A little history on Ben. He was a part-time student of Victor Houteff, the leader of the Shepherd’s Rod/ Davidian Seventh-day Adventists. Not to be confused with Branch Davidians. He came onto Mt. Carmel occasionally, which was the name of the large sprawling property of some 380 acres, which was where the DSDA association was established and it’s close members lived. He attended some presentations by Victor and soon expressed a desire to be involved in the movement.

However from all available records Ben was not a close associated member of the group. More of an occasional member with limited interest in joining up with the DSDA. For all appearances, it looks like Ben had his own reasons for learning Victor’s message and this will become clearer as we continue. As we just read from Judge Logue, according to Ben, he was given a direct revelation to “lead” God’s people.

Ben Roden is one of the key players in our story so it is necessary in finding out who he was. George Saether was one of Victor Houteff’s close members, even being on the executive council on Mt. Carmel, during Victor’s time. George as well, has his memoirs at Baylor. In them, George describes a not so flattering picture of Ben. It appears that Ben’s true motives surfaced upon the death of Victor Houteff, let us read–

Roden …was here on a visit in about 1943, 1944, 1945—something like that (Mt. Carmel property). Stayed two or three days and then he came back in 1953. He ran a garden down along the lake. (Parenthesis ours, Baylor Interview,no.8, p.336)

“They didn’t tell us who The Branch was for a long time. Finally, it was Brother Roden. He acted like he was modest but we subsequently found out that this modesty was just all put on….

McGEE: All right. He was with this group from Odessa and they were talking about The Branch which was the term which he had created or they had created to describe their particular movement?”

SAETHER: “That’s right.” (no. 8, p.360-363)

Later on in the interview Saether, reveals a shocking revelation about what Roden thought of his actions in regards to their original Branch letter they sent to Mt. Carmel warning them that they were coming with a  serious message from the Lord –

“Brother and Sister Roden were here. We were nice to ’em and we were in our living room here where we used to live. They were gonna go then and we had a nice visit. Mrs, Roden and my wife went out of the
living room first and Brother Roden and I loitered along. Anyway, he said this—he thought this was quite a joke—he’s not as keen as his wife. She was sharp. He said this, “My sister lives in Springfield, Missouri and she mailed that letterfor us.” (laughter) He let the cat out of the bag….” (parenthesis is Saether)

“..those people are deceitful, those Rodens. Deceitful. They’re treacherous. Because they’re possessed of the devil. They must be. They’ve resorted to various forms of incantation… 

Roden was in there. He wanted to buy some charts and Hermanson asked him, “Are you prepared to pay your bill here?” When he came here as a gardener he ran quite a bill. He just ignored what he said. He didn’t pay any attention to it. I’m pretty sure that he still owes that bill. He didn’t pay it.

He volunteered to come and have an organic garden. It takes something to put a large family—to come and stay for months at a time and no income. That was his agreement but he owed this seven hundred dollars anyway, for rent and food and one thing and another. That indicates the kind of a leader they had behind them. It’s of the devil. ..I understood that afterwards Roden claimed to be a prophet and the leader.”(Interview no. 8, p.372-373)

http://digitalcollections.baylor.edu/cdm/ref/collection/buioh/id/1214

Apparently the flock was much the wiser to Roden’s imitation message , Saether comments–

McGEE: Were there any others around that time of significance that supported Roden?

SAETHER: None of the Waco people or Mt. Carmel people. Only this man, Jones. He was just a young man  (Baylor Interview no.9, p.416)

http://digitalcollections.baylor.edu/cdm/ref/collection/buioh/id/1214

NOTE: this young man turned out to be Perry Jones, a Branch Davidian leader, who later was killed in the Waco fire. Sadly Jones kept going with his false prophets and went from Roden to Koresh.

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(George Saether interviewed by Professor MeGee)

Now the Scriptures say —

“Every matter must be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.” (2 Cor. 13:1)

Saether’s charge was a serious one, not at all to be taken lightly, especially since Benjamin Roden is none other than–the ORIGINATOR OF THE BRANCH DAVIDIANS. In other words, not only in the months after the death of Victor Houteff (Feb. 5, 1955), but in David Koresh’s time and even today, the Branch Davidian theology is active and recruiting. Thus people really need to know their  history and who is who , what is what, before they jump “all in” with their soul and with their eternal life at stake! Satan is sneaky brethren!

So do we have another witness or two to collaborate Saether’s report? Yes. The name of this witness is  Bonnie Smith. We have had a good relationship with her over the years and have had the privilege of speaking to her about the “old days” when she was on the camp with Victor and many other DSDA. This woman probably has the most eye-witness information existing today. She was on the camp for about 20 years. Being in her eighties she still has a sharp mind and proclaims the message.But she has vivid memories of  Ben Roden and what happened to her parents.

Soon after VTH died Roden spread the message that the people needed to get back to Israel (This was after Roden already produced some writings for his Branch message). He also promoted the message that because Victor Houteff had died he could not be the true Elijah, because he was not translated as Elijah was in type. Inference being that he, Ben Roden, was indeed the real Elijah* who would not die. So he announced publicly that all those who would like to join him in the trip to Israel, and who paid upfront, would come with him. (* witnessed by another original camp member Don Adair , “A Davidian Testimony”, p.211)

Roden got some people to sign up. Two of those was sister Bonnie Smith’s parents.  Sister Bonnie relayed to us that they paid about 1000.00. Soon Roden and a few others left for Israel but the Smith family was not taken, simply ignored and passed by, even though they paid upfront. The money was stolen.

Bewildered because they believed in Roden and his so-called “inspired” message, as the primary fulfillment of the Elijah to come. He died in 1978. They were really dumbfounded that he would rip them off. Why?? This was so wrong at a very basic Christian level, that it made for true bewilderment. 

Roden, after trying to establish a good foothold in Israel, didn’t achieve his goals and came back. Never, and this is key, did Roden reach out to the Smith family again! He was aware of their inquiry on what happened–yet ignored them to the very day of his death!

Later Bonnie’s parents told sister Bonnie, they regretted following Roden, as he was not right and may God forgive him. Sister Bonnie had pleaded with them for years to quit with Roden’s imitation Davidian message. She knew from her own eye witness (same as Don Adair, George Saether) that the pioneers (including VTH) were not supportive of Roden, due to (among other things) him being a thief when he rung up large bills for his garden during his visits to old Mt. Carmel. They too were never paid as George Saether reported.

“And if I say to a wicked person, ‘You will surely die,’ but they then turn away from their sin and do what is just and right–if the wicked restores the pledge, gives back what he has taken by robbery, and walks in the statutes of life, not doing injustice, he shall surely live; he shall not die.None of their past sins will be brought up again, for they have done what is just and right, and they will surely live.” (Ezek. 33:14-16)

Before we get to our third and last witness, Don Adair, we should point out that all these witnesses had   no personal animosity towards Roden, simply they wanted the truth spoken of this man and his deceptions  in order to warn the flock, lest they be snared by a false prophet dressed in “robes of light”.

Don Adair, is one of the other living members along with Bonnie. He’s written a book about his DSDA life and has much to say about Ben Roden. We highly suggest you read it called “A Davidian Testimony”.

He tells of Roden —

“Ben L. Roden was the first “usurper” and false prophet who was like a vulture, circling around old Mt. Carmel waiting for Bro. Houteff to die. And as soon as he died, he came swooping down to appear among the Davidians, and claimed that he was the Elijah who would never die! ….Ben Roden was a hypocrite and apostate who hated the SRod message, which he said he believed. That’s why he claimed Bro. Houteff was not Elijah because he died, and did not restore the literal kingdom in Jerusalem.Obviously, that is why he went to the city of Jerusalem in the New State of Israel to set up God’s kingdom there. 

After all, he could tell them that he was a Jew and Elijah the prophet who would never die…. But it failed, obviously because the Jews would not follow him as their new king David.. What he started in America, however, did not fail; it caused a split among Davidians, leaving everyone to choose between one of two Elijahs.”  ( A Davidian Testimony, p.190,197)

So our three witnesses, all of whom were original Davidian Seventh-day Adventists, confirmed and established who and what Benjamin Roden was about. But Satan set up his plan in establishing this “new prophet” and the groundwork was laid for his future plans. Who in their right mind would claim that a man who bears such fruit –thievery, incantation, false predictions,etc could indeed be a “true” prophet of God? That is to amount to –blasphemy through blindness.

“Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Therefore by their fruits you will know them.” (Matt.7:15-20)

Our Lord said twice to emphasis an important lesson –we shall know them by their fruit.

There is often the feedback from those snared in Roden’s work, that upon hearing these witnesses,they revert back to Moses and  king David,  “Well both Moses and David were faulty men, who even committed murder, yet they were God’s prophets.”  

Both of those men of God REPENTED prior to writing God’s message entrusted to them. Roden never repented and still claimed inspiration, an utter mockery of God’s justice and law.

At this point we should explain some of the major differences of Ben Roden’s doctrines versus the original Davidian S.D.A.

–We must keep the Feast days in order to please God.

This not only flies in the face of the Lord’s Rod (Timely Greetings, vol. 2, no.37, p.14-15) but it strikes at the heart of Lord’s message through Apostle Paul’s as well —

“But now, after that ye have known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements, where unto ye desire again to be in bondage? Ye observe days, and months, and times, and years. I am afraid of you, lest I have bestowed upon you labor in vain.” (Galatians 4:9-11)

–There is other prophets after the promised Elijah to come of Mal. 4:5

Where in the Bible? Isn’t there only ONE prophet told of the Lord to come before the great and dreadful day? Further, as clear as words can make it , the Lord’s Rod says the Elijah to come is the “very last” messenger to God’s S.D.A church (Jezreel letters, no. 9, p.1). The words “very last” cannot be mis-interpreted.

There is a crafty justification that some Branch Davidians use showing that the Scriptures point to another messenger and that is their interpretation of Rev. 14:17,18. They teach that after Houteff’s message, the other angel ( verse 17,18) is symbolic of Ben Roden and his message.

This once again shows the folly of the Branch movement, on the one hand they agree that Victor Houteff was inspired and indeed “a prophet”, yet they pick and choose what to believe and follow! The original DSDA message makes clear what these verses symbolize–

Isa. 63:5 — “And I looked, and there was none to help; and I wondered that there was none to uphold: therefore Mine own arm brought salvation unto Me; and My fury, it upheld Me.”

   Here you note that when the time came there was not even one among His servants “to uphold” the work of the harvest, and consequently the Lord Himself did the work without them.

   For the second reaping, however, He uses His guileless “servants,” the “firstfruits,” the 144,000, as prefigured by the angel with the sharp sickle (Rev. 14:17, 18).  (Timely Greeting, vol. 2, no. 44, p.38)

No it is not Ben Roden, it’s symbolic of the 144,000. You see Roden needed to find somewhere in the Bible some Scripture that pointed to him, sadly he found some mis-guided souls who bought it , hook , line and sinker.

–The Holy Spirit is a female being, the “Mother God”.

Both SOP and the Rod do not teach such things. Only in Ben Roden and his wife, Lois Roden’s fertile imagination does such teachings  promulgate in the field to hook and to snare.

This concludes our first post. Next week we’ll conclude with part two.

 

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Young children playing in the snow on the original Mt. Carmel, run by Victor Houteff (1935-1955). The main building of the organization (B-8) is seen in the background.

 

 

 

 

 

A Close Look at Type and Anti-type (Part 2 of 2)

July 28, 2018

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Let’s review what we learned in part 1. We saw that John correctly made a decided effort to search out more Truth. He knew that just as the parable showed, we needed the “extra oil” in our vessels to make it to the kingdom.

However, John apparently had not been in tune with the “Spirit of Truth” for he was guided to a Biblical feasts keeping site that blended the S.D.A faith with that of ceremonial feast keeping. Having read and listened to one John Vandenberg, he became convinced of his arguments as to the need of keeping the feasts in order to be “righteous” before the Lord today.

With this back drop he later found the Lord’s Rod message (Micah 6:9) and became further convinced of the truth of this as well. John , unfortunately is typical of a fair amount of so-called “present truth” believers. Today we are witnessing some electronic media sources proclaiming the Rod message yet also proclaiming we are to keep the feasts. In other words a blend  or hybrid teaching. Hybrid indeed! We shall now carefully breakdown this mis-calculation, this mixing falsehood with Truth.

You see brethren, the Lord knew very well that some day the most deliberate tricks would be foisted upon us. And this feast keeping trick is not upon the Elijah messengers alone, but upon the Seventh-day Adventist community at large.

Ok let’s review the points and arguments that John stands on from our prior post —

Nah. 1:15 — “Behold upon the mountains the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace!  O Judah, keep thy solemn feasts, perform thy vows: for the wicked shall no more pass through thee; he is utterly cut off.”

   Here you see that the announcement of this long-expected event is to be made by someone’s publications.  Moreover, he publishes peace and thus announces the restoration of the Kingdom.  This is the only peace that the world can have.  There is to be no other.  Those who keep God’s solemn “feasts” and perform their vows shall have this peace.  None others shall. (Timely Greetings, Vol. 2, No. 42 p.41)

“Now commands the Lord: “Behold upon the mountains the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace! O Judah, keep thy solemn feasts, perform thy vows: for the wicked shall no more pass through thee he is utterly cut off.” Nah. 1:15. — {4 Jezreel Letter p.4.}

We remember that John read the above references and believed that the Rod message confirmed his belief in keeping the feasts. But as mentioned John had not read the Lord’s complete Rod. In It we find clarification.

Regarding Nahum 1:15, we find the Rod does indeed clarify. As the Scripture tells “Judah” to keep the solemn feasts and perform their vows, what does “Judah” represent?

“..the Truth of the Judgment of the Living, the which is to forever separate the wheat from the tares (Matt. 13:30), the good fish from the bad (Matt. 13:47, 48), the sheep from the goats (Matt. 25:32), and the wise virgins from the foolish ones (Matt. 25:1-12). These shall “no more pass through” the church, declares the scripture, they are “utterly cut off.” Thus urging Judah, the church, to keep this antitypical atonement feast and to perform her vows to God so as to be found worthy of escaping the judgments of God.( TG, Vol. 1 No. 3, p.15)

Judah means –the  SDA church.

Ok, so Nahum 1:15 is instructions to us as Seventh-day Adventists. Next we want to know what does “keep thy solemn feasts ” mean? Is this a literal keeping or what? Now, let’s really zoom in here!

“Behold upon the mountains the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace! O Judah, keep thy solemn feasts [the truth of the sanctuary], perform thy vows: for the wicked shall no more pass through thee; he is utterly cut off.” Nah. 1:15. (Tract 4, p.61)

Ah, we see so clear and unmistakable that the Rod declares that keeping the feasts is keeping ”the truth of the sanctuary.” Our Lord did not let us down He inspired His Elijah prophet to make it straight and clear.

Our next important question then is —  What does “the truth of the Sanctuary”  mean?

“The Bible is the revelation of creation and redemption in Christ – Creator and Redeemer. Therefore, the Sabbath and the Sanctuary constitute “The Truth.” (See Hebrews 9:10, 4:4-10.) Thus these two doctrines are coupled together, cannot be separated, and bear the whole truth.   How do we keep the Sanctuary truth? It is kept, not in type, but in anti-type. By faith we believe that Christ, our High Priest, in the heavenly sanctuary is officiating in our behalf, as it was taught in type by the earthly sanctuary, built by Moses. As Israel complied with the requirements of its service in the type, so we must in the anti-type. Thus we “proclaim the truth [Sabbath and Sanctuary] more fully.” (2 SROD, p.138-139)

Praise the Lord! We can see that our anti-type keeping of the feasts, is our believing by faith that Christ is now doing all requirements on our behalf, the WORTHY high Priest! We thus believe and proclaim the Truth (Sabbath and Sanctuary).

From the above and from Christ Himself through His Elijah message we see want constitutes feast keeping today. Thus had John been fully grounded in the Rod he would have seen the “whole picture” and saved himself and others whom he no doubt influenced–much trouble and possibly losing out on eternal life.

The Spirit of Prophecy is clear about false righteous ones in describing the horrible time when they will be haunted for practicing their ideas against God’s clear instructions through His prophet —

“In these scriptures two parties are brought to view.  One party permitted themselves to be deceived, and took sides with those with whom the Lord has a controversy.  They misinterpreted the message sent them, and clothed themselves in robes of self-righteousness.  Sin was not sinful in their eyes.  They taught falsehood as truth, and by them many souls were led astray.” — “Testimonies for the Church,” Vol. 9, page 268. (SOP regarding Rev. 6:12-17)

We want to point out that the message does tell us that apparently we will be keeping the “Feast of Tabernacles” in the pre-millennial kingdom as spoken of in Zech. 14:16 —

“And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, and to keep the feast of tabernacles.”

“This sentence of Scripture emphatically implies that all who at that decisive moment refuse to be converted to the Lord, shall perish; only those who worship the Lord at Jerusalem on the feast of tabernacles, shall be spared.” (TG, vol. 1, no.20, p.13)

The above is the extent of which the Rod confirms feast keeping.

A short while back we held a phone conference study which we discussed the pre-millennial kingdom. In the study our brother who presented discussed Nahum 1:15. After the study we , as usual, opened the phones up for questions and answers. One brother took issue to what was discussed in the study. Namely that we were wrong to teach that we were not to literally keep the feasts, and that specifically Nahum 1:15 was encouraging us to keep the feasts literally.

His argument was as follows. He said that according to the Rod message in Answerer, vol. 3, p.9, Q-50 he had “proof” that brother Houteff supported and encouraged us present truth believers to keep the feast days.

WHEN DOES THE HEBREW YEAR BEGIN?

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…

…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….

…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.” (Answerer, vol. p.9, Question 50)

As can be seen the question is directed to knowing about the Hebrew time clock NOT about feast keeping and whether it still was required. In order to answer this question brother Houteff found it necessary to relate it to the feasts and the new moons.

Further, we brought this up in the phone conference, that if VTH had indeed meant in that reference that we are to keep the feasts today then we have two BIG problems.One, as stated already the message clears the understanding of what constitutes keeping them in anti-type. Two, we know from not only the writings but from two still living eye witnesses that during the approx. 20 years while brother Houteff lived on Mt. Carmel in Texas, he NEVER, not once kept any feast days, nor taught to keep them.

The brother’s response was “Well if brother Houteff didn’t keep them , then are you going down with him also”? What?? After using the Rod as a reference to support his “proof”, once exposed he quickly accuses its writer of non-compliance to the Lord’s instructions! There is no end to the foolishness that Satan has with his workers of iniquity.

To summarize —

The Lord asks us to keep the feasts (ceremonies) in anti-type only. Those who want to use the Lord’s Rod to justify keeping them literally are just fooling themselves and those they proclaim this false righteousness to. The High Priest who is worthy is now officiating in our behalf and thus we , by faith, proclaim the sanctuary truth. Let us be serious students of the Lord’s anti-type ceremonial message as brought by the two final prophets to our church. If we are found to be in error on a doctrine, we get straight and stay clear from false self-righteousness. There is too much over whelming evidence against the literal keeping for us to ignore. Let us not for a moment think God did not foresee this contentious issue and the need to clear it. In His all-seeing vision He sent His Elijah to “restore” our understanding of this issue, let us praise Him!

“In the Galatian churches, open, unmasked error was supplanting the gospel message. Christ, the true foundation of the faith, was virtually renounced for the obsolete ceremonies of Judaism. The apostle saw that if the believers in Galatia were saved from the dangerous influences which threatened them, the most decisive measures must be taken, the sharpest warnings given…..
…The apostle urged the Galatians to leave the false guides by whom they had been misled, and to return to the faith that had been accompanied by unmistakable evidences of divine approval.

The men who had attempted to lead them from their belief in the gospel were hypocrites, unholy in heart and corrupt in life. Their religion was made up of a round of ceremonies, through the performance of which they expected to gain the favor of God. They had no desire for a gospel that called for obedience to the word, “Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” John 3:3. They felt that a religion based on such a doctrine, required too great a sacrifice, and they clung to their errors, deceiving themselves and others.

To substitute external forms of religion for holiness of heart and life is still as pleasing to the unrenewed nature as it was in the days of these Jewish teachers. Today, as then, there are false spiritual guides, to whose doctrines many listen eagerly. It is Satan’s studied effort to divert minds from the hope of salvation through faith in Christ and obedience to the law of God. In every age the archenemy adapts his temptations to the prejudices or inclinations of those whom he is seeking to deceive.

In apostolic times he led the Jews to exalt the ceremonial law and reject Christ; at the present time he induces many professing Christians, under pretense of honoring Christ, to cast contempt on the moral law and to teach that its precepts may be transgressed with impunity. It is the duty of every servant of God to withstand firmly and decidedly these perverters of the faith and by the word of truth fearlessly to expose their errors.” (Acts of the Apostles, p.385.386.387)

“There are many who try to blend these two systems, using the texts that speak of the ceremonial law to prove that the moral law has been abolished; but this is a perversion of the Scriptures. The distinction between the two systems is broad and clear. The ceremonial system was made up of symbols pointing to Christ, to His sacrifice and His priesthood. This ritual law, with its sacrifices and ordinances, was to be performed by the Hebrews until type met antitype in the death of Christ, the Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world.” (Patriarchs and Prophets, p.365)

A Close Look at Type and Anti-type (Part 1 of 2)

July 21, 2018

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Once more the seriousness of the feast keeping situation has come around. This issue is getting more and more prevalent, similar to the subject of the Trinity. There is no doubt that in these last hours of probation our enemy has zeroed in on these two subjects. Even so far as to be a concern among some present truth believers.

Let us look into what the Lord’s Elijah message, the restoring truth message,  has to show us from the view of observance in anti-type of the ceremonial feast days. There is some very interesting references that we need to look at and delve into.

What makes this subject so intriguing is that if one desires to surface read or skim the message and hold on to a few selected references, one can actually think he has support for the idea of keeping the ceremonies (sans the sacrifices). Yes this can be supposedly supported and we’ll show how.

But those who want the “full Truth and nothing but the full Truth” will desire their Truth house built solidly upon the Rock of Jesus –the undeniable Truth. We shall endeavor to show from His divine Word.

The message explains —

   “Those who are willing to risk all on the ground of one inspired statement and disregard another in order to carry out certain cherished ideas of their own, are doing it on the same basis as those who entertain the idea of the conscious state of the dead, the eternal torment of the wicked, the baptism by sprinkling, the Sunday observance for the Sabbath, the condition of the millennium, etc….We would never try to establish an idea on the basis of agreeing with one passage of Scripture while disagreeing with another, for such a conclusion is as sure to be erroneous as if one should conclude that when the sun sets in the evening, it will never arise in the morning.” (Sym. Code, vol. 2, no.1, p.5)

In speaking of the writings of the Rod and SOP we read —

” …as there are no useless words in either of the writings, those who desire to know the truth must carefully mark every word, otherwise they will never comprehend the truth and, as a consequence, they will be driven by the winds as the waves of the sea until the winds cease blowing (probation closes), and they be left to sink down in their sins as do the waves in the sea.” (Sym. Code, vol. 2, no.7-8, p.10)

The above counsel is deep and far-reaching and when we use it, we prosper!

In part one we’ll look at the situation from “John’s” point of view. How he views the feast keeping doctrine today. He’ll show us how he blends the Rod message into his belief of keeping the feasts. In part two we’ll look at the opposing view and what many who have studied the message see as the Rod’s truth about it.

Ok let’s began with brother John. John is a long time Seventh-day Adventist who was not content with the lukewarm sermons and Sabbath school lessons. Something told him that there must be more to the Lord’s plans for us. After all he read Scripture like the following and truly wondered its timeline and significance for the SDA church.

“The word that Isaiah the son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem. 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. And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.” (Isaiah 2:1-3)

John asked around the church and did not get many answers, mostly ‘I’m not sure”. Then he happens to be online one day and heard about a report on end time events and what it means to the SDA church. Bingo! Right up his alley, he thought.

Long story short John was thrilled to review the report as it was all supported by Scripture and SOP. Even had some new unknown references, though he didn’t know what, stacked up to the Bible and SOP as well. He went on their site and saw that it was about the “Shepherd’s Rod”. Um, he remembered last year hearing about this term from another church leader but it was not in a good light. Something bad if he recalled.

Yet John  loved the Truth. He found himself frequently going to his new-found site, learning more and more about end time events. But John unfortunately was active in another well-known alternative website led by John Vandenberg of Bible Explorations from California. This is a well-known ministry that promotes SDA doctrine along with Biblical Feast keeping, in order to please the Lord today.

Their theory goes that although Jesus died and fulfilled our payment for sin, that fulfilled the sacrifice part of the feasts. Yet, the Lord still requires us to observe the ceremonies because among other things, His word made promises such as keeping the Passover forever —

“And this day shall be unto you for a memorial; and ye shall keep it a feast to the LORD throughout your generations; ye shall keep it a feast by an ordinance for ever.”(Exodus 12:14)

Fast forward a couple of years, John has now studied the “Rod” and believes in its teachings. But he also has not let go of his prior teachings, those of Vandenberg on keeping the Feast days. But soon John reads the following from the Rod and his joy is unspeakable!!

Nah. 1:15 — “Behold upon the mountains the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace!  O Judah, keep thy solemn feasts, perform thy vows: for the wicked shall no more pass through thee; he is utterly cut off.”

   Here you see that the announcement of this long-expected event is to be made by someone’s publications.  Moreover, he publishes peace and thus announces the restoration of the Kingdom.  This is the only peace that the world can have.  There is to be no other.  Those who keep God’s solemn “feasts” and perform their vows shall have this peace.  None others shall. (Timely Greetings, Vol. 2, No. 42 p.41)

“Now commands the Lord: “Behold upon the mountains the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace! O Judah, keep thy solemn feasts, perform thy vows: for the wicked shall no more pass through thee he is utterly cut off.” Nah. 1:15. — {4 Jezreel Letter p.4.}

You see one thing had been bothering John, although he was learning the Rod message he was finding opposition to the idea of keeping the Feast days from fellow Elijah messengers. They would tell him  “no, no, we are NOT to keep them” and they would provide references. But John , being already convinced upon the duty of Feast keeping would not accept their arguments.

So reading the Rod references above, he was excited and now felt fully justified in keeping them as Vandenberg had taught. True confirmation he thought!

After all does it not say Those who keep God’s solemn “feasts” and perform their vows shall have this peace.  None others shall.” ? And  “Now commands the Lord:… keep thy solemn feasts, perform thy vows” ? No one, John thought, can misunderstand these plain Inspired injunctions.

To John’s mind he has successfully dealt with “the big reference” which deals with this feast keeping as follows —

“Broadly speaking, the law of Moses consists of three parts.  The first is the Ceremonial law, the law of the temple — the sacrificial law.  This law, of course, we today must not observe, except in antitype, for it foreshadowed things to come, particularly Christ’s first advent.  Thus it is that if we had lived in Old Testament times and had failed to comply with the sacrificial law and system of that day, we would thereby have demonstrated unbelief in Christ, Who was to come.  But since we are living in the Christian era, if we should now observe the typical sacrificial law and system, we should thereby demonstrate unbelief in Christ, Who has come.

   And so, as this law was nailed to the cross (Col. 2:14), we need not, and must not, observe it now.

   The second part of Moses’ law, is the law by which Israel was to rule its people, the civil, or legal law, — the law which defines what penalty the government should impose upon those who are caught stealing, killing, or the like.  Now, since we as Christians do not have a government of our own, but are still under the governments of the nations of today, we personally, or as a group are not required to enforce the legal law of Moses either.

   The only law of Moses, therefore, that we can possibly be admonished to remember, is the third part of his law: the moral law, which consists of the things that pertain to us as individuals, the things that we as individuals must perform, the things that perfect our character, the things that make us a peculiar people.  We therefore need to search out and do the things contained in the moral law of Moses — “The commandments, and the statutes and the judgments.” Deut. 5:31.(TG, vol. 2, no.37, p.14-15)

John has read this many times and he counters those who use it to point against keeping the ceremonies, that what the Rod is saying is that we are not to keep the “sacrificial law”. In other words John thinks that the Rod found it necessary to warn against doing sacrifices!

This to the listeners of John’s argument makes them shake their head in amazement. They tried to tell John that even the vast multitude of protestant Christians know that we do not have an issue today, nor since Christ, with doing sacrifices. So with the Lord’s restoring message is HE going to tell His prophet to warn against keeping sacrifices?? No, there is only one conclusion – it’s a warning to not keep the ceremonies.

But John has not read ALL the Rod. He has severely limited his understanding of the Lord’s message by reading a portion instead of the whole.

The Lord’s Rod explains —

“The most common cause of doctrinal confusion among Bible students lies in their so very frequently failing to view a subject in full perspective from the writer’s point of view, — a failing which results in their seeing it from some foreign standpoint so narrowing their view that instead of gaining the writer’s idea on the subject, they gain a false idea on it. And if the idea be to their liking, they magnify and zealously promote it as truth, whereas if it be not to their liking, they vigorously oppose it, and then lay it to the responsibility of the writer!” (Tract 3, p.91)

Allow us to give another example of how reading a reference without studying the whole subject can throw us off.

The following is so perversely misunderstood that it has caused a vast multitude of protestant Christians to have a misguided understanding. Thinking that despite the unbelieving Jews in Israel today, God will magically save them.

“And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob” (Romans 11:26)

The message clarifies this —

Question No. 64:—Romans 9:27 says that a “remnant” of Israel will be saved, but Romans 11:26 says that “all” Israel will be saved. I do not understand this. Can you help me? 

  Answer:—Romans 9:27 is speaking of Israel as a nation, of which only a remnant will be saved; whereas Romans 11:26 is referring to the elect of Israel as individuals, all of whom will be saved.  (Answerer, vol. 3, p.51)

Additionally we have our Lord’s Word Himself —

Jesus saith unto them, ‘Did ye never read in the scriptures, The stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner: this is the Lord’s doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes? Therefore say I unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof. ..And when the chief priests and Pharisees had heard his parables, they perceived that he spake of them. “(Matt 21:42-43, 45)

In part two we’ll look at the anti-type observance of keeping the feast days which is the dominant position of present truth believers today. God in His all-knowing wisdom did not leave these powerful and clear instructions unwritten for us.

 

Understanding Oblations

August 19, 2017

Image result for Biblical feasts

A couple of weeks back we wrote about how Satan continues to use his time proven trick of twisting God’s word to those who fall for his snares. This subject of “Oblations” is another prime example. Allow us to look deeply into this subject.

It has been said that in order to know the clearest meaning of a subject, Biblical point or view, it’s best to start in that same book within the Bible. In our case it would be the book of Daniel. This book contains our clear and profound text, let us read —

“And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.” (Daniel 9:27)

Here we read that Christ , not at the beginning of His ministry but rather at His death, was to cause a cessation of sacrifices and oblations. For He was the fulfillment of the ceremonies.

Jesus kept the feasts as a way to win His people, as Paul illuminated here–

“And unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law; To them that are without law, as without law, (being not without law to God, but under the law to Christ,) that I might gain them that are without law.” (1  Cor.9:20-21)

So the foolish argument that Jesus kept the feasts so that we can do the same sinks miserably as truth. But as we all know clearly, the cessation of the sacrifices makes sense, but many of us are confused and perplexed as to the cessation of the oblations. What does the word oblation mean?

The Hebrew word is “minchah” pronounced “min-khaw”. E-Sword, the Bible translator of Hebrew and Greek says —

A bestow, tribute, donation. Specifically a sacrificial offering, but bloodless and voluntary.

As the word of God would not be redundant by saying “sacrifice and oblation” as meaning “sacrifice and sacrifice”, we know that oblations mean something apart from sacrifices yet these oblations are connected with the sacrifices, they are a part of the ceremonial system of the feasts–they go together hand in hand.

The reason for this post this week is that I was at another Bible study a couple Sabbath’s ago and the subject of feast keeping came up. The so-called “present truth” believers there were unanimous that we should keep them today to honor the Lord. I was the lone voice speaking against such things.

I told the gentleman who was promoting this idea that in Daniel 9:27 we are told that the sacrifices and oblations would cease upon Christ’s death. He responded “Oh no that does not mean we should stop observing the feasts.” I countered that the oblations were to cease as well, meaning that any and all oblations were to cease that were connected to the feasts. Again he countered “Oh that word oblation does not mean all oblations…”. I then said that even prayers are an oblation and he responded, “No, they are supplications”.

Do you remember in our prior post about God’s exalted word , how Satan inserts his own sneaky words to change the meaning of the clear word of God? Ok let us read what this man has done to God’s word–

“And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and some oblations to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.” (Daniel 9:27)

Once again we must expose such foul play with God’s word!  To understand oblation we should go to Daniel himself and read how he uses it.

“And whiles I was speaking, and praying, and confessing my sin and the sin of my people Israel, and presenting my supplication before the LORD my God for the holy mountain of my God; Yea, whiles I was speaking in prayer, even the man Gabriel, whom I had seen in the vision at the beginning, being caused to fly swiftly, touched me about the time of the evening oblation.” (Daniel 9:21)

We see that Daniel was offering his “supplications”, prayers as  an oblation to the Lord in place of the sacrifices. This he did religiously as performing his oblations to the Lord. The evening sacrifice was at the ninth hour of the day, or about three o’clock in the afternoon. As formerly, when the temple stood, this hour was devoted to sacrifices, now it was to prayer.

So we see without doubt that prayers are “oblations” or offerings to the Lord. They submit petitions to the Lord for His acceptance and response. The clear meaning from the book of Daniel. Now, when we see that oblations were to cease, those that were connected to the feasts, we should understand that any and all oblations were to cease including prayer!

So this leaves those who are under Satan’s snare of feast keeping with an empty bag. How can feast keepers come together and not offer prayer oblations or any other oblation such as gifts, grains, or anything else? The communion offering of bread and wine (grape juice) is certainly an oblation is it not? They have a gutless and useless ceremony that has no meaning or honor to the Lord! His word says they are ceased effective our Savior’s death upon the cross.

As we have posted many times before,  SOP concludes beyond doubt that all ceremonies were fulfilled and pointed to Christ, including the passover —

“Christ was standing at the point of transition between two economies and their two great festivals. He, the spotless Lamb of God, was about to present Himself as a sin offering, that He would thus bring to an end the system of types and ceremonies that for four thousand years had pointed to His death. As He ate the Passover with His disciples, He instituted in its place the service that was to be the memorial of His great sacrifice. The national festival of the Jews was to pass away forever. The service which Christ established was to be observed by His followers in all lands and through all ages.” [DA p.652]

But to establish the final Inspired Word of God about this subject, we turn to the message of Elijah–

“Broadly speaking, the law of Moses consists of three parts.  The first is the Ceremonial law, the law of the temple — the sacrificial law.  This law, of course, we today must not observe, except in antitype, for it foreshadowed things to come, particularly Christ’s first advent.  Thus it is that if we had lived in Old Testament times and had failed to comply with the sacrificial law and system of that day, we would thereby have demonstrated unbelief in Christ, Who was to come.  But since we are living in the Christian era, if we should now observe the typical sacrificial law and system, we should thereby demonstrate unbelief in Christ, Who has come.

   And so, as this law was nailed to the cross (Col. 2:14), we need not, and must not, observe it now.” ( Brother Houteff, Timely Greetings, Vol. 2, No.37, p.14)

In closing, if you are a Seventh-day Adventist who still thinks that Christ’s death did not “..cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease”, then let it be known you are attempting a form of “self-righteousness” and are wearing a terrible garment (filthy works) before the Lord, and unless repentance is made the Lord may say —

“..Friend, how did you enter here not having a wedding garment?’ And he was speechless.” (Matt. 22:12)

 

What about Ezekiel 43 and 44?

January 30, 2016

Ezekiel picture

Of all the books of the Bible, save the Revelation, perhaps there is none more mysterious or difficult to understand than the book of Ezekiel. As many know, we have shown many reports of the prophetic writings of Ezekiel, particularly Ezek. 9 the church judgment event.

However there is one area of the book that even the most advanced students of the holy Scriptures are often stymied and thoroughly confused. That is the highly mysterious chapters 43 and 44.

The message tells something about this–

“In as much as Zerubbabel is a “signet,” a symbol or a type of the builders in the day the Lord shakes the heavens and the earth, then Ezekiel’s description of the mystic temple (chapters 40-47) which is yet to be built, could be the blueprint of Zerubbabel’s antitypical temple.” ( 1 TG, no.13, p.6)

We see that this mystic temple is “yet to be built”. Implying that it is to be built someday in the future. But there is no definite declaration as it continues “could be the blueprint of Zerubbabels’ antitypical temple.”

Let us now look at the following perplexing Scripture. After describing the future altar of the aforesaid temple the word says —

“And he said unto me, Son of man, thus saith the Lord GOD; These are  the ordinances of the altar in the day when they shall make it, to offer burnt offerings thereon, and to sprinkle blood thereon. And thou shalt give to the priests the Levites that be of the seed of Zadok, which approach unto me, to minister unto me, saith the Lord GOD, a young bullock for a sin offering.

And thou shalt take of the blood thereof, and put it on the four horns of it, and on the four corners of the settle, and upon the border round about: thus shalt thou cleanse and purge it. Thou shalt take the bullock also of the sin offering, and he shall burn it in the appointed place of the house, without the sanctuary.

And on the second day thou shalt offer a kid of the goats without blemish for a sin offering; and they shall cleanse the altar, as they did cleanse it with the bullock. When thou hast made an end of cleansing it, thou shalt offer a young bullock without blemish, and a ram out of the flock without blemish.

And thou shalt offer them before the LORD, and the priests shall cast salt upon them, and they shall offer them up for a burnt offering unto the LORD. Seven days shalt thou prepare every day a goat for a sin offering: they shall also prepare a young bullock, and a ram out of the flock, without blemish.  Seven days shall they purge the altar and purify it; and they shall consecrate themselves.

And when these days are expired, it shall be, that upon the eighth day, and so forward, the priests shall make your burnt offerings upon the altar, and your peace offerings; and I will accept you, saith the Lord GOD.” (Ezek. 43:18-27).

So there is no doubt that this shows  animal blood sacrifices , as in the days of old. But as we believers in the Christian dispensation know, our Lord was the final and ultimate sacrifice for our sins, right?

After all the curtain was split in two at His death, signifying an end to the earthly customs and requirements of the sacrificial system. We also have this proof in Daniel 9:27–

“And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it  desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.” 

So what are we to make of this potential throwback to the old customs and sacrifices? We can only offer some ideas. If you have any please feel free to add them in comment section.

Obviously we know that as Christ fulfilled the blood sacrifices, these customs and reenactments could only mean a historical lesson in their significance. As the message tells us that the land of Israel will be the future gospel center of the world, for the Loud Cry, there shall be many in the land and once all is underway and the gospel machine is in full gear, the people there in Israel will have the chance to review what history showed as a live portrayal of the sacrificial system.

Concerning the keeping of the feast days the message tells us that the Feast of Tabernacles will be kept in the holy land. It does not say any others will be kept though.

Zech. 14:16 — “And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, and to keep the feast of tabernacles.”

   This sentence of Scripture emphatically implies that all who at that decisive moment refuse to be converted to the Lord, shall perish; only those who worship the Lord at Jerusalem on the feast of tabernacles, shall be spared.” (1 TG, no. 20, p.13)

During this feast, there were numerous animal sacrifices.

“The sacrifices required for the Feast of Tabernacles were tremendous. Beside the daily sacrifices offered in the evening and the morning, there were others offered specifically for the feast (Num. 29:12-38). During the seven days of this feast, the priests were required each day to offer up: two rams, fourteen lambs and a goat for the sin offering (Num 29:12-40).

The number of offerings of bullocks decreased by one each of the succeeding seven days—13 bullocks on the 2nd day, 12 bullocks on the 3rd day …7 bullocks on the 7th day. On the 8th day the special offering was one bullock and ram, seven lambs, and a goat as sin offering. There were a total of 70 bullocks, 14 rams, 98 lambs (or 182 sacrifices) offered during the Feast of Tabernacles.”(By kind permission of  Dr. Lee Warren, B.A., D.D. )

In closing, this future prophesy is definitely a “wait and see” proposition. We do know that there will be at least two annual celebrations of the Feast of Tabernacles (“year to year”) in the pre-mil kingdom.

We also know that God’s word will not return void and we can look forward to being shown the fullness of His word in this mysterious prophesy.

“All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be complete, fully equipped for every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:16-17)

 

10 Challenging Questions (Part 1 of 2)

September 12, 2015

A person jumps over a challenge, riding an arrow to success

The Scriptures say, “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear..”(1 Peter 3:16).

But the Spirit of Prophecy says, “Some have thought it an evidence of intellectual keenness and superiority to perplex minds in regard to what is truth. They resort to subtlety of argument, to playing upon words; they take unjust advantage in asking questions. When their questions have been fairly answered, they will turn the subject [and] bring up another point to avoid acknowledging the truth. We should beware of indulging the spirit which controlled the Jews.”(Testimonies to Ministers, p.108)

So to rectify the two we see that we should be ready to give answers to those who ask, those who want the truth. But should we come in contact with a “Pharisee”, one who wants to argue with us and to show us that he/she only cares about their opinion/agenda, we’ll it’s clear–don’t indulge that spirit. Say “Thanks, but no thanks”.

We would like to present 10 challenging questions that appear to be some often asked questions concerning the Lord’s  Elijah message. We will address each one with a “Thus sayeth the Lord”, so that you may copy this report and use it to help explain to those who are the “Burean” type and want to know the truth of the matter.

1- –  Is there another prophet(s) to come to our SDA church after Ellen G. White?

The simple answer is–yes. The most clearest references come from two Inspired quotes.

“Behold,  I will send you Elijah the prophet before the great and dreadful day of the LORD.”(Mal. 4:5)

There can be no misunderstanding here. The Lord says that a male prophet will come as “Elijah”,and he will come at the very end of time.

Then the Lord sent us His prophetess to give us more clues about this Elijah.

“Prophecy must be fulfilled. The Lord says: “Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord.” Somebody is to come in the spirit and power of Elijah, and when he appears, men may say: “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)

Here we see that Inspiration tells us a male “he” will appear and that sadly, he would be rejected for the most part. But we see that he will be known as an interpreter of Scripture. As we have reported in many posts on this blog, there has been only one man in all our SDA history that has published volumes of interpretive works of Scripture and Spirit of Prophecy. His name was Victor T. Houteff. If you don’t know much about this man, I strongly advise any and all who will listen–get to know him and his writings. For many, including myself, believe beyond doubt that God sent him as the prophesied “Elijah” to come. His writings are that deep. Only God could have given a mere man this ability.

From a personal view, there is only 3 Inspired books/writings that can sometimes wear me out and give me an overwhelming sense of “enough already, this is too much truth” Scripture, Spirit of Prophecy and Shepherd’s Rod publications. Of course I never get tired of them but they do have such a powerful far-reaching effect on those who study them.

We often marvel how Ellen White had just a 3rd grade education, and yet could write like a true scholar. The Holy Spirit whispering in her ear as she wrote. Amazingly, this phenomena continued with Victor Houteff. He had just a 4th grade education. Both writers certainly  wrote “as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.” (2 Peter 1:21)

2–  Is there another prophet(s) to come to our SDA church after Victor T. Houteff?

Here we can sometimes run into some Davidian “Pharisees” who will ask this question. As we have posted many times the highest and most truth filled light on the planet is the Lord’s Elijah message. But Satan knows this and has infiltrated the Davidian Seventh-day Adventists, just like he has the Seventh-day Adventists.

The typical SDA member will not know about , let alone ask about, another prophet to come to our SDA church. This shows how far encompassing Satan and his minions have blinded and fooled our church. But some Davidians who are well read in the message, can get even be more blinded and fooled than the SDA members! (See our post  – “Blinded by the light” https://godsloveandlaw.com/2013/03/30/blinded-by-the-light/ )

But we need to address this because of the fact that in Davidian circles there are a fair amount of so called believers of the Elijah message that think brother Houteff was not the last prophet to come. We come in contact with these types occasionally on our Facebook group–Truth Tellers.

Remember  that Scriptures says, “Surely the Lord GOD does nothing, unless He reveals His secret to His servants the prophets” (Amos 3:7)

So we must search the Scriptures to know when/who the Lord sends in the last days / end of time. As mentioned He promises to send one man “Elijah”. Notice it does not say “Elijahs” or “Elijah, the prophets“.

So if the Lord would send more than one prophet, He certainly would have revealed that through His prophets and their writings per His word of Amos 3:7. We find one place, Malachi 4:5,  as the proof of ONE end time prophet to come.

Victor Houteff wrote these inspired words to eliminate all doubt that his calling would be the “very last”.

“Behold, I will send My messenger, and he shall prepare the way before Me: and the Lord, Whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to His temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, he shall come, saith the Lord of hosts.” Mal. 3:1.

   The promise here is that the Lord will send a messenger, and as the fourth chapter of Malachi is but a continuation of the story in the third, we are there told that the messenger is antitypical Elijah (Mal. 4:5), the one who is “to restore all things” (Matt. 17:11) and Inspiration of a later addition, and in a special message to the Seventh-day Adventist ministry warns:

   “Prophecy must be fulfilled.  The Lord says: ‘Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord.’  Somebody is to come in the spirit and power of Elijah, and when he appears, men may say: ‘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,” pp. 475, 476.

   There are two main points to note in these quotations: (1) that the message and messenger here mentioned are the very last; (2) that they are to restore all things, (3) that there is danger for some to make fools of themselves by daring to tell him how to teach his message — assuming to take God’s place! (Jezreel Letter, no.9, p.1)

But despite the plain clear words above, the blinded Pharisee will say, “Ah, but Victor Houteff cannot be the anti-typical Elijah because the original Elijah came and spoke the message then was translated to heaven without dying.” But Inspiration is one step ahead of them.

Although VTH was the Elijah to come, under Inspiration he wrote,

“The prophet, or the message is called, Elijah, “with the spirit and power of Elijah”….Thus Elijah stands as a type of the 144,000 living translated saints.”(SRod, vol. 1, p.47)

The above reference is good to know, additionally, because this addresses many SDA non-believers who also say “Victor Houteff died so he cannot be the Elijah anti- type.” But we see that Inspiration says that the anti- type is the 144,000.

But what is most clear of all is the prophet’s own words concerning what Mal:4:5,6 means–

“Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord: and he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.” Mall 4:5, 6.

   In the light which this prophecy sheds on the subject, no one can possibly escape the conclusion that a prophet — a person — is to be sent “before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord,” and that thus only can there be a group of people in connection with Elijah’s message.  The Scriptures make definite and sure the promise, the time, and the work, also the way to our security in the great and dreadful day, “lest,” as says the Lord, “I come and smite the earth with a curse.” Mall 4:6.

   No one can afford to commit the absurdity of either treating lightly or of kindling sparks of his own on the subject.  We should remember, moreover, that it is not possible that God should leave a one of us in darkness if we want to know the Truth, and if we are mindful of what God would have us to do. (“The Great Controversy,” p… 560).  To the end that this may be the happy experience of all of us, we should pray that the Spirit Who leads into all Truth would direct this effort. (General Conference Special, p.5-6)

We see that, first, the Lord sends ONE PERSON as the “Elijah” promised in the Word. Then from this person who writes out the last message to our church, His remnant people, we know that many will take up the message of Elijah and thus continue spreading this final message of hope, accountability, and solemn responsibility to our church.

Keep in mind that most of the time these Pharisees (who exist both in the SDA and DSDA) want to deny the Lord’s final prophet because they have some man they are following. The SDA members most likely have a Doug Batchelor, Stephen Bohr, Mark Finley, etc. As for the DSDA, there are 3 individuals that come to mind, who have followings.

Lennox Sam -From USA . Works in Africa much of the time(recruiting). Has own ideas such as a pre purification of Davidians before the church judgement comes to the SDA church–Ezek.9. Is active on YouTube.

Ariel Dacutanan – From the Philippines. Teaches that Victor Houteff was not last prophet (although he quotes largely from him), and has his followers believing that he is a prophet even though there is documented evidence of his false predictions. Has a few YouTube videos

Trent Wilde – From USA. Considered one of the “Branch” Davidian leaders. He uses Victor Houteff writings together with his own ideas such as feast keeping, and more prophets to come after brother V. Houteff. Very active on YouTube.

We need to remember Satan is far far more intelligent than we are, and as such he gets very well read men such as the above, to claim that Victor Houteff was indeed a prophet, yet he isn’t enough for us. In other words they interject their message with the Lord’s prophet! They act the part of Korah and say to brother Houteff, as Korah said to Moses, “You take too much upon yourself..”(Numbers 16:3). They also fulfill the prophesied words that our prophetess spoke, “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).

Those who follow these men are on a slippery slope, a waiting trap for those who don’t prayerfully study on their own!

3 —  Are there more than 144,000 sealed from the SDA church in the church judgment?

We shall look at this issue with the 3 Inspired sources. While not directly saying how many, our Lord let’s us know that “few” find eternal life.

“For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it.”(Matt. 7:14)

Our second quote gets more specific in this matter.

“I have tried in the fear of God to set before His people their danger and their sins, and have endeavored, to the best of my feeble powers, to arouse them. I have stated startling things, which, if they had believed, would have caused them distress and terror, and led them to zeal in repenting of their sins and iniquities.

I have stated before them that, from what was shown me, but a small number of those now professing to believe the truth would eventually be saved–not because they could not be saved, but because they would not be saved in God’s own appointed way. The way marked out by our divine Lord is too narrow and the gate too strait to admit them while grasping the world or while cherishing selfishness or sin of any kind.” (Testimones, vol. 2, p.445-446)

Another revealing quote is Rev. 7:4–“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.”

Our prophetess declared that we, the SDA church, are the “Israel of today” (Testimonies, vol. 9, p.164) (Testimonies, vol. 5, p.80). The church contains all the tribes of the children of Israel. Some may ask –What if there are Gentiles in the church, will they automatically be left without the seal of God because they are not descendants of Abraham’s seed?  Rest assured God does not arbitrarily eliminate people from the church. This is a deep study and we have a post that delves into this   https://godsloveandlaw.com/2014/08/09/who-comprises-the-s-d-a-church/

One of the most insidious Satanic tricks is that he gets Elijah message believers to join their SDA brethren, and declare that God’s word is not fully correct (Rev. 7:4) or is “symbolical” and that there will be more than 144,000 sealed from the church. They are really saying “oh it’s really more than that because we got 18 million, cmon.” Those who partake in this teaching are directly “adding” to the words in Revelation which we know comes with a fearful price.

“I testify to everyone hearing the words of the prophecy of this book: If anyone should add to these things, God will add unto him the plagues having been written in this book. And if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his part from the tree of life and from the holy city, which are written in this book.” (Rev. 22:18-19)

A few days ago I was involved in a email study with a so-called Davidian brother who  said to me that it cannot be possible that God would only seal 144,000 out of the approximate 18 million SDA members. He said if he taught this it would go over like a “lead balloon.” I about fell out of my chair reading this from a  “40 year” Davidian! This is the perfect example of being the most deceived one can be. Fortunately most Davidians are grounded in the truth and don’t go along with this kind of adding to God’s word.

All one has to do is look at the Lord’s history on how He executed His judgments. In Noah’s day, with possibly several million (some say much more) there was eight saved. In Moses’ time with the approx. million people who came out of Egypt, there was two people saved (over 20 years old). In Lot’s day, from the large cities of Sodom and Gomorrah, one family was spared.  In the time of our Lord’s prophecies of the coming destruction of the Jews (approx. 1.1 million) only about 97,000 survived(Wikipedia- siege of Jerusalem AD 70).

So it is entirely in keeping with His historical judicial actions. Does this mean that He only wants 144,000 to survive? Of course not. But down through the ages God has always sent His prophets to warn and when the warnings are ignored, He commits His judgments. Our prophet , Victor T. Houteff, was sent to us, are we going to listen?

His is a righteous Judge and we have no basis to deny His justice or even question it. All we can do is learn the message and obey it.

4 —  Should we keep the feast days/ceremonies?  

Let us read what happened right after Jesus died–

“At that moment the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. The earth quaked and the rocks were split.” (Matt.27:51)

The Spirit of Prophecy explains–

“By the rending of the veil of the temple, God said, I can no longer reveal My presence in the most holy place. A new and living Way, before which there hangs no veil, is offered to all. No longer need sinful, sorrowing humanity await the coming of the high priest. 5BC 1109.4

Type had met antitype in the death of God’s Son. The Lamb of God had been offered as a sacrifice. It was as if a voice had said to the worshipers, “There is now an end to all sacrifices and offerings”(5 BC p.1109)

Any one who knows about the feast days/ceremonies knows that the main ingredient of these ceremonies was the sacrifice of animals. Once Christ died the central meaning and purpose of the feast days was gone.

There is a movement among our church today, proposing that Christ really did not do away with the ceremonies. They conveniently interpret Scripture and the Spirit of Prophecy to point out how we must keep the feast days. One of the leading proponents from the SDA church is a man named, John Vandenburg. He has a website called Bible Explorations and is active on YouTube.

But the best evidence we have that the feast days are no longer required is from the restorer of Truth that the Lord sent, let us read–

“Broadly speaking, the law of Moses consists of three parts.  The first is the Ceremonial law, the law of the temple — the sacrificial law.  This law, of course, we today must not observe, except in antitype, for it foreshadowed things to come, particularly Christ’s first advent.  Thus it is that if we had lived in Old Testament times and had failed to comply with the sacrificial law and system of that day, we would thereby have demonstrated unbelief in Christ, Who was to come.  But since we are living in the Christian era, if we should now observe the typical sacrificial law and system, we should thereby demonstrate unbelief in Christ, Who has come.

   And so, as this law was nailed to the cross (Col. 2:14), we need not, and must not, observe it now.” (TG, vol. 2, no. 37, p.14-15)

The above is plain and very clear, the “Ceremonial law” and “sacrificial law” was “nailed to the cross”. If you try and keep these days as a requirement, you “demonstrate unbelief in Christ, Who has come.”

Again, some Pharisees argue, “But see, the prophet says we are to keep the feast days in “anti-type”.This can easily be corrected by pointing out the fact that neither Ellen White nor Victor Houteff kept the feast days during their life. So if the mis-informed attempt to bring this weak argument, we simply say that God does not bring prophets who write and teach one thing and do the other. We all know that our Lord continually blasted hypocrisy as one of the most sinful conditions of mankind. In the chapter 23 of Matthew, He said “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites!” seven times.

“You hypocrites! Well did Isaiah prophesy of you, when he said: “‘This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far from me; in vain do they worship me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.’”(Matt. 15:7-9)

“God hates hypocrites more than He hates any other kind of sinners.” (1 TG, no.44, p.5)

Again the message clarifies the issue–

“The earthly sanctuary service for the salvation of the human race, in types and symbols, reveals Christ’s administration in the heavenly.  Which was made up of two laws; namely, the “ten commandment” and the “ceremonial” laws.  The tables of the ten commandments were put in the ark, and the ceremonial or the law of Moses was placed on the side of the ark. (See Deut. 10:2; 31:26.) 

Why two laws?  The moral law points out the sin, “for by the law is the knowledge of sin.” (Rom. 3:20.)   “For where no law is, there is no transgression.” (Rom. 4:15.)   But the ceremonial law “was added because of transgressions till the seed should come to whom the promise was made.” (Gal. 3:19.)   Which was the remedy to heal the sinner and set him free from the condemnation of the moral law.  When Christ (the seed) came, He took this law of ordinance (the law of Moses) “out of the way, nailing it to the cross.” (Col. 2:14.) 

The earthly administration of the law of ordinance could not give life of itself, because it was only a shadow of the true.  Therefore, at the crucifixion of Christ it ceased and the heavenly one, which was foreshadowed by the earthly, began.  The literal sanctuary service of both temples were identical.”(Shepherds Rod, vol. 2, p.267-268)

Some point to a few EGW quotes where they are mis-interpreted to look like she advocates  observing the feast days. One example is the following.

“If the children of Israel needed the benefit of these holy convocations in their time, how much more do we need them in these last days of peril and conflict! And if the people of the world then needed the light which God had committed to His church, how much more do they need it now!” {6T, 39-40}

One of our most basic rules of Hermeneutics is to look at context. With this rule, we should look at the preceding  paragraphs of the above quote.

To begin with the context begins with the title–Camp Meeting.

We start from the middle of page 39–

“Anciently the Lord instructed His people to assemble three times a year for His worship. To these holy convocations the children of Israel came, bringing to the house of God their tithes, their sin offerings, and their offerings of gratitude. They met to recount God’s mercies, to make known His wonderful works, and to offer praise and thanksgiving to His name. And they were to unite in the sacrificial service which pointed to Christ as the Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world. Thus they were to be preserved from the corrupting power of worldliness and idolatry. Faith and love and gratitude were to be kept alive in their hearts, and through their association together in this sacred service they were to be bound closer to God and to one another.

In the days of Christ these feasts were attended by vast multitudes of people from all lands; and had they been kept as God intended, in the spirit of true worship, the light of truth might through them have been given to all the nations of the world.

40

With those who lived at a distance from the tabernacle, more than a month of every year must have been occupied in attendance upon these holy convocations. The Lord saw that these gatherings were necessary for the spiritual life of His people. They needed to turn away from their worldly cares, to commune with God, and to contemplate unseen realities.”

We see that Inspiration compares the feast days meetings to our camp meetings, as a way to gather together for “the spiritual life of His people.” She is not saying that we must keep the feast days in order to satisfy our Lord today. It plainly says that those feast days “pointed to Christ.” He was soon to take the place of the sacrificial feast day ceremonies!

The remainder of the page shows the importance of attending meetings and having fellowship with our brothers and sisters for uplifting God’s cause.

To further confirm her stance on these ceremonies she made the following powerful statements.

“In the Galatian churches, open, unmasked error was supplanting the gospel message. Christ, the true foundation of the faith, was virtually renounced for the obsolete ceremonies of Judaism. The apostle saw that if the believers in Galatia were saved from the dangerous influences which threatened them, the most decisive measures must be taken, the sharpest warnings given.” (AA p.385)

“He has swept away every ceremony of the ancient type. He has given no liberty to restore these rites, or to substitute anything that will recall the old literal sacrifices.” (Review and Herald, Feb. 25, 1896)

So we see that both our prophetess and prophet confirm that feast keeping should not be considered a requirement today. Some may at times want to observe them as a historical lesson , to learn of our Biblical history and this lesson can be good (See Special Testimonies on Education,page 80), but to say we must keep them today is to profess unbelief in Christ.

(Next week, we’ll look at questions 5 to 10)

What about the Feast Days?

February 16, 2013

As many Bible students know, the Old Testament feast days were a very important part of the righteous walk with our Lord prior to our Lord’s sacrifice. The special days all pointed to Christ and His redemption plan. But today, we must not, as a requirement, keep the feast days as will be more  clearly  shown.

Within  the feast days and ceremonial observances, the animal sacrifices were an integral part of the services. These sacrifices, as we all know, signified our Lord’s sacrifice. As He died on the cross,  the vail in the temple, was ripped in two. This was to give a clear sign that the sacrifices, along with the ceremonial feast days were to end. The Anti-Type had met type.

A while back we did a post called “Original Davidians are not Branch Davidians”. The Branch DSDA are a break away group that was founded after the death of brother Houteff. One of the points we addressed is that, unlike Original Davidians, the Branch Davidians believe that the Lord’s followers still have to keep the feast days. This is one of the most striking differences between the two groups. Unfortunately, they are often both lumped together, with people assuming that ALL Davidians believe this way. Ignorance is indeed a mis-adventure for many.

Let’s look at some clear Ellen White quotes concerning our issue . In our first quote she says, ” There are many who try to blend these two systems (the ceremonial law and the Moral Law), using the texts that speak of the ceremonial law to prove that the Moral Law has been abolished; but this is a perversion of the Scriptures. The distinction between the two systems is broad and clear. The ceremonial system was made up of symbols pointing to Christ, to His sacrifice and His priesthood. This ritual law, with it’s sacrifices and ordinances, was to be performed by the Hebrews until type met anti-type in the death of Christ, the lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world.Then all the sacrificial offerings were to cease.”(Patriarchs and Prophets, p.365)

“The rending of the vail of the temple showed that the Jewish sacrifices and ordinances would no longer be received.” (Spiritual Gifts, vol.1, p.170)

Lastly she says, “Since the whole ritual economy was symbolical of Christ, it had not value apart from Him. When the Jews sealed their rejection of Christ by delivering Him to death, they rejected all that gave significance to the temple and it’s services. it’s sacredness had departed. it was doomed to destruction. From that day sacrificial offerings and the service connected with them were meaningless (Desire of Ages, p.165).

Remember last week in our post how we pointed out that the clear plain words of Scripture and Inspiration cannot be added to or subtracted from, lest we wrestle away our Lord’s clear intended will for us. Can it get any more plain than the above?Unfortunately, one of the biggest problems in Christendom is the ignoring of the straight words and meanings. It’s the old human nature to use our imagination and agenda reasoning to take the straight words and turn them into crooked words!

Ok we’ll add one more EGW quote to quash the issue. “He has swept away every ceremony of the ancient type. He has given no liberty to restore these rites, or to substitute anything that will recall the old literal sacrifices.” (Review and Herald, feb. 25, 1896).

One of my good friends has recently told me that she has been shown by a friend that the feast days are still a part of our walk.Surprisingly this belief is more prevalent than we think. Not only Branch Davidians teach it, but some other divergent groups within the SDA as well. So our purpose in this post is to help clear up this issue. Feel free as always to copy this report and use it as a study to counteract their false beliefs.

 The basic main feast days are a list of  seven.(perfect harmony with God’s completeness number-7)

1) Passover feast

2) Feast of the unleavened bread

3) Wave sheaf ceremony

4) Pentecost ceremony

5) Feast of trumpets

6) Day of Atonement

7) Feast of tabernacles

Something is very interesting about one of  the above feasts. We read in (Zech. 14:16) the following, “And it shall come to pass that everyone who is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall go up from year to year to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, and to keep the Feast of Tabernacles”.

Apparently it appears that once the future premillennial kingdom is established in the holy land, the Feast of Tabernacles will be performed and kept. I am searching the last prophet’s writings concerning this, and will add them as soon as I locate them.

So with the above clear words of Inspiration, how can some still get into the trap of thinking we need to keep the feast days? Here’s a quote that is often used to support their ideas, “If the children of Israel needed the benefit of these holy convocations(feast days) in their time, how much more do we need them in these last days of peril and conflict! And if the people of the world needed the light which God had committed to His church, how much more do they need it now!” (Ellen White, Testimonies, vol. 6, pages 39, 40, chapter title,“The Camp Meeting.”)

But if you read that real closely, she is talking about a “camp meeting” experience and as such, it would be a great LEARNING experience to observe them. In fact, the holy convocations really are a great experience and I personally would see the occasional observance as one of great enlightenment. I think in this light she was explaining them. If she was indicating that we must keep them, then God forbid, she would have said clear error and contradictions with her writings above.

Lastly, in finishing our study, we would be remiss to not post what the “restorer of all things” said about this issue. Remember that the Elijah prophet MUST be our go to source in these last days, right before the great and dreadful day. He is the last prophet from the Lord, consequently the most current “present truth” we can and must know. I can tell you one thing, my heart and soul soars knowing that I have all the writings of our Lord’s final message to refer to. It can give you great joy as well. The Lord knows what we need and He delivers it through His prophets!

“Broadly speaking, the law of Moses consists of three parts.  The first is the Ceremonial law, the law of the temple — the sacrificial law.  This law, of course, we today must not observe, except in antitype, for it foreshadowed things to come, particularly Christ’s first advent.  Thus it is that if we had lived in Old Testament times and had failed to comply with the sacrificial law and system of that day, we would thereby have demonstrated unbelief in Christ, Who was to come.  But since we are living in the Christian era, if we should now observe the typical sacrificial law and system, we should thereby demonstrate unbelief in Christ, Who has come.

   And so, as this law was nailed to the cross (Col. 2:14), we need not, and must not, observe it now. ( Brother Houteff, Timely Greetings, Vol. 2, No.37, para.14)

We see that brother Houteff minces no words on this issue “we need not, and must not, observe it now”. And as he clearly says, we demonstrate “unbelief in Christ” if we take the stance that we are required to keep them.

Hopefully this has cleared up the issue a little more. So next time someone who’s trying to “work” their way into heaven comes up and says, “What about the feast days?”  We can say we’ve looked into the plain straight forward words of the prophets and the answer is–NO, we don’t have to keep them today. May the Lord guide you into all truth (John 16:13)


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