Archive for the ‘Truth telling vs. lying’ Category

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.)

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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.

 

Image result for Picture Donny Adair Davidian S.D.A

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.

 

 

 

 

 

Present Truth Controversies

November 10, 2018

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We as present truth believers know very well SOP’s counsel–

“I saw the necessity of the messengers, especially, watching and checking all fanaticism wherever they might see it rise. Satan is pressing in on every side, and unless we watch for him, and have our eyes open to his devices and snares, and have on the whole armor of God, the fiery darts of the wicked will hit us. There are many precious truths contained in the Word of God, but it is “present truth” that the flock needs now.” (EW, p.63)

But we cannot forget for a moment that the present truth will be Satan’s focus.Why? Because with it, God’s people are sealed and ready to “stand” when the Rev. 12 church judgment comes  and the flood is swallowed up and he is “wroth with the woman.”

So that being said it makes total sense that our adversary will have his imitation so-called “present truth” These “truths” being nothing more than a disguise to fool the remnant. Make no mistake the S.D.A in massive amounts, have bought Satan’s disguises. The message says —

 “..the old Devil has already put all his forces to work, piping pleasing tunes to lure Truth seekers to climb aboard his golden bandwagon.   Its glittering tinsel of truth is already beguiling many with his wares while his captains and generals are to the top of their voices shouting their “Hallelujahs,” “Holy Ghost,” “gift of healing,” “gift of tongues,” “gift of miracles,” and all the rest, although the entire fanfare is devoid even of a spark of life.  Every wind of doctrine will be blowing, false revivals and reformations will be at their peak.  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.” (General Conference Special, p.7)

Yes, the “real” present truth, the Lord’s Elijah message (Mal. 4:5-6) will be countermanded and to a great degree successfully hijacked, thus it is today.

Ok let’s now look at a couple major controversies among us as present truth believers.

No Trinity, only TWO beings, God the Father and Jesus His Son.

This is not only a current controversy among some present truth believers, but has to a good degree affected the mother S.D.A church. But let us not forget that our Great All-Seeing Lord knew about this issue and prepared a way out of this snare. He knew that certain active promoters such as the following would be doing their evil best to snare and fool the people.

High profile S.D.A teachers —

Nader Mansour  (Revelation 1412.org)
David Barron (thethirdangelsmessage.com)

These guys are almost consumed with identifying the God head. Their YouTube channel is full of videos explaining their ideas on what the Holy Spirit is (some kind of free floating energy at the Father and Son’s beck and call) and that there is a sort of blasphemy in proclaiming the Trinity. To them there is no third being with a personality or divine conscientiousness. It is a deception to proclaim the Triune Godhead, they teach.

Satan  snares many through his human instruments doing his dirty deeds. The Lord has made this issue very clear so that none should guess about it.

“This Association, in common with the Seventh-day Adventist denomination, holds “certain fundamental beliefs, the principal features of which, together with a portion of the Scriptural references upon which they are based,” are originally summarized as follows:

“1. That the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments were given by inspiration of God, contain an all-sufficient revelation of His will to men, and are the only unerring rule of faith and practice. 2 Tim. 3:15-17.

“2. That the Godhead, or Trinity, consists of the Eternal Father, a personal, spiritual Being, omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient, infinite in wisdom and love; the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Eternal Father, through whom all things were created and through whom the salvation of the redeemed hosts will be accomplished; the Holy Spirit, the third person of the Godhead, the great regenerating power in the work of redemption. Matt. 28:19.” (2 TG, no.10, p.21)

The above is confirmation that the Davidian S.D.A have always, since it’s inception, agreed with the mother church, that the Trinity is the composition of the Godhead. No mis-interpreting this! Thus the Lord shows that His Elijah message, the restoration message, CONFIRMS the Trinity, even allowing it to be named as such!

Unfortunately there are teachers today that think they have the “inside scoop” on what the real deal is on this issue, whereby transgressing the below clear counsel  from SOP–

“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}

It’s interesting to note that both of these teachers have broke away from the mother church (but still calling themselves S.D.A). They are promoting “home church” because they cannot be involved in such apostasy or with such people, so they teach. They are the real wheat and must separate themselves from the tares.

“A people that provoketh me to anger continually to my face; that sacrificeth in gardens, and burneth incense upon altars of brick; Which remain among the graves, and lodge in the monuments, which eat swine’s flesh, and broth of abominable things in  their vessels; “Who say, ‘Keep to yourself, do not come near me, For I am holier than you!’ These are smoke in My nostrils, A fire that burns all the day.”(Isaiah 65:3-5)

The S.D.A ship is going down brethren and unlike the above “holier than you” groups, the Davidian S.D.A, the present truth proclaimers,  DO NOT dare leave the mother church, they will stay with her to the end! The time to “call her out of Babylon” is not now, especially to declare it to our church!

“God has a church, a chosen people; and could all see as I have seen how closely Christ identifies Himself with His people, no such message would be heard as the one that denounces the church as Babylon.” (Testimonies to Ministers, p.20)

 “God says now to work within the Laodicean congregation rather than without. And what He says, that He means, and we dare not disobey, regardless what men may say or do. ”  (Answerer, vol.2, Q- 32)

Must keep the Feast Days.

This one is more prevalent in the Mother church, but make no mistake, some present truth believers have been snared here as well. Often, the present truth believer will admit that they brought this doctrine along with them BEFORE they studied the Lord’s Elijah message. In other words they got this teaching implanted in them from a teacher and looked to the message of Elijah for any and all excuses and support for their erroneous ideas. Having the best of both worlds so they think.

High profile teachers — 

John Vandenburgh (Bible Explorations.com) (S.D.A)

Trent Wilde (Branch D.S.D.A)

 

Although John Vandenburgh recently passed away, his false teachings and hope still lives on through his website and his YouTube videos. Again, the Lord knew in advance this would come up and met it as we see below–

“Mal. 4:4, 5 — “Remember ye the law of Moses My servant, which I commanded unto him in Horeb for all Israel, with the statutes and judgments.  Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord.”

   You know by now that Malachi, chapters 3 and 4, prophetically speak to the people of today, to the people just before the great and dreadful day, to the people to whom antitypical Elijah the prophet is sent.  And what wise counsel does the Lord give through Malachi? — He says, “Remember ye the Law of Moses My servant.”  Which law? — The law of “statutes and judgments” which the Lord commanded “in Horeb.”  Since this is God’s faithful advice to His people of this day, we would do well to restudy this law of Moses, and to remember it, for we cannot disregard His counsel and still expect His blessings.

   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)

Do we see the words “must not”? Yet those who blindly skip over these words, do not care in the least that they disobey the words of the Elijah message, no not at all!

Trent Wilde is  truly more deceived. For this guy professes a belief in the Elijah message BUT that is not good enough for him and his followers. The Feasts MUST be kept to properly honor the Lord today, they teach. Although not a true Davidian S.D.A, Wilde is a “Branch” Davidian, whose history is muddied with David Koresh and the Waco tragedy. The Branch was sprung up after brother Victor Houteff died by a man named Ben Roden. He was a student of brother Houteff in the late 40’s and early 50’s, yet  when the time came to insert himself onto the scene (at VTH’s death) he wasted no time in declaring himself the successor Elijah prophet who would not die! He died a false prophet in 1977.

Thus down through the ages Roden’s group has proclaimed that “present truth” is Victor Houteff’s writings (Davidan S.D.A) BUT not truly the complete Elijah message. His teaching must be more current present truth, such as keeping the Feast days, believing that there is  three beings in the Godhead  -God the Father, Christ the Son, and a FEMALE mother as the Holy Spirit!  Remember when we said Satan would bring his imitations?

To give an example of the thinking of Roden, he wrote the following, showing some thoughts on why  another prophet (ie.”Joshua” –himself) was needed to lead the people into the kingdom because VTH died and could not.

“Some say that modern day Moses (V.T. Houteff) brought the truths that  are to lead God’s people out of all nations and interpreted Sister White’s writings and the Bible on the subject of the purification of the church. Like Moses of old, the Lord did not see fit to use brother Houteff to lead His people into the kingdom. Instead, He will use another, Joshua, to first separate the thieves and idol worshippers from among His people, then take them to the kingdom. “Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow, saith the LORD of hosts: smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered: and I will turn mine hand upon the little ones.” (Roden, The Seven Letters, 1957, p.8)

The message gives us great counsel in paying close attention to each and every Inspired word of God —

“…we see that when we take into consideration the meaning of each word instead of making thoughtless and hasty conclusions, the Scriptures prove to be not only most perfect and wonderful and yet simple, but also inspiring, making wise the humble — and lightening the path of him who as did Christ, delights to do the will of God.” (Sym. Coe, vol. 2, no.2, p.,3)

In closing the Lord’s final message of Elijah makes clear where we as S.D.A and D.S.D.A should stand on our discussed issues . None should wonder. If we carefully observe “each word” from Inspiration we will succeed in seeing the true from the false. Satan’s snares will be found and called out.

 

Facebook Deception

October 13, 2018

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In Isaiah  we read —

“Woe unto them that seek deep to hide their counsel from the LORD, and their works are in the dark, and they say, Who seeth us? and who knoweth us?” (Isaiah 29:15)

Satan as we know has long been the deceiver of man, hiding behind his works of darkness even appearing as an angel of light. Deception in a myriad of forms has been his calling card. Yet amazingly we find some so-called “present truth” believers doing such deception and hiding in the midst!

Our case in point this week is concerning Facebook. When one joins FB they are asked to register under there “real name”, this we do to let our friends and family know who they are dealing with.

Wikipedia points out — Facebook has maintained the real-name system policy for user profiles. According to Facebook, the real-name policy stems from the position “that way, you always know who you’re connecting with. This helps keep our community safe.”[1][2] Likewise per this policy, a “real name” is defined by “your real name as it would be listed on your credit card, driver’s license or student ID

On FB community page, their “featured answer” to why FB’s policy of using only your real name is important, they state–

“… using a fake name is an act of deception. Using your real name lets everyone you connect with know who you are.”

While in some cases, such as stalkers,  serious family issues, etc, it may be necessary to not use your real name, but aside from the above, to use an alias is to:

1) lie to FB when signing up

2) More importantly in regard to Gospel work,  it crosses the line. It crosses God’s line of “no guile” in our mouth.

Allow us to show the case of brother C, we’ll call him. He has been a professed believer in the Lord’s Rod message (Micah 6:9) for many years. You’ll recall last week we did the post on how one must broken on the Rock of Jesus, to allow Jesus to build us up and thus produce fruit in our walk. This case is an obvious case of never being broken. The Bible says —

“Ye shall know them by their fruits.” (Matt 7:16)

Brother C has a long-standing reputation as a divisive person among many present truth believers. His name is often recognized as trouble and from what we have learned, well deserved. We also have not escaped his accusatory work and been labeled  “thief” “liar”  and more. Yes, there are times when we must give “stern and direct” words to our brethren, yet we do this from our real known identity not a mask.

He has at least two or three FB alias he uses. And because of this, he  no doubt feels his criticism of many brethren on FB, not to mention his downright  un-Christ like responses to those who disagree with him, makes him go undetected. In other words his bombastic approach is a ” the end justifies the means” method. But this is a true deception to God.

Once we decide to “strive… to be among the 144,000” (RH, March 9, 1905) we must NOT be found with “guile” in our mouth! Meaning we are  “straight shooters” and do not lie or deceive one another.

“These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb. And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God.” (Rev. 14:4-5)

“For He said, Surely they are my people, children that will not lie: so He was their Saviour.” (Isaiah 63:8)

Brother C’s deception is sophisticated. With one of his alias’ he speaks about his own website as if speaking in the third person point of view. To build his ministry up he uses his alias’ to promote himself and his website.

The question may be asked –why? Why not at least uncover his mask and just do all the FB work under his real name? Well obviously something is bothering brother C, because to do these things shows , whether consciously or subconsciously, a desire to hide behind something. He does have an extensive knowledge of the message and as a result of this attitude, he often judges and condemns any brethren or group that does not agree with him. A blindness exists which he cannot discern. It’s the ol “take the log out of your eye first” remedy he needs to awake.

Sop counsels–

Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.” False speaking in any matter, every attempt or purpose to deceive our neighbor, is here included.” (Patriarchs and Prophets, p.309)

The whole idea of hiding behind a mask, as it were,  should simply be foreign to us as Christ’s followers. This hiding has historically been one of the main tools of Satan and his deceptors.  This “fruit” is certainly bad and if they continue down this path of deception, the end of the road will not be to their liking.

This brother we have reason to believe reads this blog and in order to protect his true identity we chose to not disclose his real name. This warning must be given because true brotherly concern does not keep from trying to help a brother caught in a snare and trap. Are we hopeful this post will produce a correction? Not really, based on previous warnings given, yet there may be others out there that may benefit from this counsel.

The message states —

“I have been shown that the greatest reason why the people of God are now found in this state of spiritual blindness is that they will not receive correction. Many have despised the reproofs and warnings given them.” (Testimonies, vol. 3, p.255)

Let us look at some Scripture about deception —

“Whoever walks in integrity walks securely, but he who makes his ways crooked will be found out.” (Proverbs 10:9)

 “So then let us cast off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light.”(Romans 13:12)

“Who shall ascend the hill of the Lord? And who shall stand in his holy place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not lift up his soul to what is false and does not swear deceitfully. He will receive blessing from the Lord and righteousness from the God of his salvation.” (Psalms 24:3-5)

“One who is faithful in a very little is also faithful in much, and one who is dishonest in a very little is also dishonest in much. If then you have not been faithful in the unrighteous wealth, who will entrust to you the true riches? And if you have not been faithful in that which is another’s, who will give you that which is your own?” (Luke 16:10-12)

“Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another.” (Ephesians 4:25)

“For such men are false apostles, deceitful workmen, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. So it is no surprise if his servants, also, disguise themselves as servants of righteousness. Their end will correspond to their deeds.” (2 Cor.13-15)

“No one who practices deceit shall dwell in my house; no one who utters lies shall continue before my eyes.” (Psalms 101:7)

“Pray for us, for we are sure that we have a clear conscience, desiring to act honorably in all things.” (Hebrews 13:18)

“So put away all malice and all deceit and hypocrisy and envy and all slander.”(1 Peter 2:1)

In closing, when we take up the cross and decide to be a representative of Christ, let us do it without deceit of any kind. Facebook can indeed be a good tool to reach our brethren around the world but not in crafty deception. As the Word says –what we reap, we shall sow.

A Text Book Example of Bearing False Witness

September 29, 2018

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In our King’s 9th Commandment we read —

“Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor”(Exodus 20:16)

Written by the finger of God, these moral laws are SUPREME in our holy walk with our King and Savior! Thus those who flagrantly or carelessly break one of them are truly walking on a dark path, lest they repent. The following post we will delve into a text-book case of a so-called leader of God’s flock giving terrible and deceptive teachings and advice to the flock. Pastor Alden Ho decided to publicly denounce and put out of God’s house a family on truly shocking grounds.

A little background on the brother and his family that Ho called out in the video. They are long time present truth deliverers. The brother has extensive knowledge of the Lord’s Rod message (Micah 6:9) and has one of the closet knit families in the message.

The kids are active in the kids programs and in all aspects represent the Lord (dress, manners, comportment, etc) as well as can be expected of a Seventh-day Adventist family. The credit goes to the parents raising them in the way they should go.

Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.(Proverbs 22:6)

Yet Ho took time in a recent sermon address to “warn” the people of  a family whose main crime was representing Christ and His Word. Let us look at this disturbing occurrence.

Before we do let us remember this counsel from God’s word —

“Indeed, all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted.” (2 Tim. 3:12)

This situation hits home because we personally know this brother and his family. We have spent many a conversations about Christ , His Word and His prophecies. There are few who , in our opinion have shown a truly sincere desire to walk the walk as well as talk the talk. So when we heard this , our jaw dropped! How can this be?? We thought!

The family had been going off and on to this particular church for three years and developed friendships within the church. They participated in church activities and did all they could to make the church pleasing to God. But being a believer in the Lord’s Rod, our brother did not shy away when the Spirit led him to spread the “message of Elijah”.  Just as we personally have experienced, someone within the church discovered that they were “Shepherd’s Rod” people.

Later this filtered down to the Pastor Ho. Our brother relayed that instead of true concern for him and his family by Ho, by informing him he’d like to discuss an issue with him in the office to get to the bottom of this, he spoke to him in the restroom on a recent Sabbath morning. He asked the brother if he was “Shepherd’s Rod” to which the brother  responded, “No… I am a Davidian Seventh-day Adventist”. To which Ho simply walked out of the restroom.

The next thing you know a Constable shows up to escort his family out of the church! No formal discussion one on one with the Pastor, no opportunity to state the brother’s case, nothing!

This is how they do it brethren in God’s house today. Let us now expose the words from Ho for all to see and be amazed. It’s a short 3 and a half minute speech given by Ho on the day the family was put out.

In the video at the 28:20 mark, Ho announces at the pulpit that he needs to let the flock know about something unpleasant that happened “about 45  minutes ago”.

Ho then goes on to tell the flock about the “modes and methods” of Shepherd’s Rod/ Davidians.

“They very lightly come , make friends with people, they don’t ruffle any feathers or anything like that for the first year or two. Then they slowly start making their way and start planting seeds and start doing their divisiveness. I would encourage you to look up Branch Davidians and Shepherd’s Rod. And to see what they are about. They believe in the Spirit of Prophecy, they believe many things that Adventists do.

But they believe that they are part of the 144,000 and they are very much into the health message. Knowing this, um, we have been waiting for them for the last couple months but they have not been around. So I was warned that they were here today, so I texted David Capps immediately, we already had a plan in mind. And David came over from across the street and I approached the gentleman and I asked him point blank, because that’s the only way to know, “are you a Shepherd’s Rod?” 

And to which he says, “I believe it”, but I said, “are you”?  He said , “No, I believe it.” I said “what does that mean?”  Then he said to me he is a Davidan Seventh-day Adventist. It’s basically the same thing. At that point I just stepped away  (meaning he stepped out of the bathroom) because if I tried to say anything more, their mode of operation at that point is to create a big chaotic scene. So I stepped away and David Capps gladly stepped in  and told him he needed to leave the premises, he and his family, and they were not allowed to step foot back here anymore.

This is not a very pleasant thing to have to do. To turn someway away from church but it is a necessity and must be done in order to protect the sheep. Now, there has not be any rifts from them that you are aware  of but we’ve been watching through Sabbath school and other things, that there has been little pokes at things. So I’ve been keeping my eye on that as well as some of the other leaders in the church. And we did talk about this at our past board meeting as well.

So this is just something that I needed to let you know and encourage you , please look them up, study what they are about. It’s very difficult to win them and to correct them because they have almost self-deceived themselves, into thinking that they are the only ones. And, um, I ask that you lift up this family in prayer, that the Holy Spirit would impress upon them what is truth.” (Ended at the 31:53 mark) (bold highlight  ours)

Let us now carefully examine what was said. Four points we’d like to make clear.

  1. Notice carefully that Ho plants his own “seeds” by saying loaded words while explaining that they plant seeds, yet we are left not knowing exactly what their “planting seeds” really means. For example, what does “little pokes” mean during Sabbath school? What is the evil of thinking they are a part of the 144,000, especially when SOP tells us to “strive with all power God has given us to be a part of the 144,000”(Review and Herald, March 9, 1905)? What does “thinking they are the only ones” mean?
  2. This family was removed from God’s house and their chance of worshiping and fellowshiping removed and forever gone at their beloved church. Does Ho think that a quick 3 and half-minute explanation is all that is needed  for such a drastic and profound action, especially when bonds and friendships are abruptly broken at his whim? With vague innuendos and confusing accusations?
  3.  Perhaps the worst of all is the following downright  terrible deceptions. Notice that Ho connects the horrible and tragic Branch Davidian history (by calling them Branch Davidians) to the Davidian  Seventh-day Adventists, which the brother and his family are not a part of. Those who know the truth  know that Branch Davidians are NOT Davidian Seventh-day Adventists, and their history and beliefs are very different. But the key point was that Ho wanted to stick in the minds of the flock, that they were trouble makers, hence the connection with the Branch.Koresh and his followers no doubt seen in the minds of the flock!The other area of falsehood was the implanting of the idea that they will “create a big chaotic scene.” Once Ho established the Branch  connection, then his logical next point was to make them out as troublemakers.  Thus he completes his unholy work of deception! Again, those who know the truth know that DSDA are all about loving and peace among the brethren. Not once during the whole time this brother and  his family worshiped there, were they ever accused of “trouble” of any kind! On the contrary, they showed a true desire to fellowship and worship in love and peace–our Creator.
  4. Finally, Ho tells his flock to “look them up” , to investigate what they are about. But he deceptively tells them to look up Branch Davidians not Davidian Seventh-day Adventists. Nevertheless, we hope that the flock does indeed look up the Shepherd’s Rod and what it is about. For the Lord’s Rod (Micah 6:9 and 7:14) is what we are told to “hear ye” today.

“The LORD’S voice crieth unto the city, and the man of wisdom shall see thy name: hear ye the Rod, and Who hath appointed it.” (Micah 6:9)

In the dark ages, the Roman leaders systematically persecuted those who they thought were heretics, yet we know as historians that often the “heretics” were just trying to obey God’s words through His holy Word–the Bible. The Seventh-day Adventist church has sunk down to this same low-level by excommunicating those they ‘think” are not in accordance with their teaching–yet they are, and SO MUCH MORE SO THAN THEY REALIZE! Is not Ho showing that instead of sincere love and caring for this family, he chooses to throw them out without a public hearing?!

We as S.D.A have publicly announced to the world we are all for religious liberty, to worship God according to our conscience. In fact we publicly produce the following —

https://www.adventist.org/en/service/religious-liberty/

Yet, away for the gazing eyes of the world, we often remove those who proclaim and desire to study Bible prophecy with deep devotion! This is  so wrong and not in Christ’s Word that to defend such behavior is impossible.

For example how about the young kids? What are we showing them with this un-biblical censorship? Do they not say “Dad, what happened?” “Why can’t we go to our church anymore”?  What can the parents tell them? Think this through brethren!

SOP is very clear about this issue —
“.. The Lord forbids us to proceed in any violent way against those whom we think erring, and we are not to deal out excommunications and denunciations to those who are faulty.” (Testimonies to Ministers, p.47)

“…The work of separation is given to the angels of God, and not committed into the hands of any man.” (Same, p.47)

In closing, as Pastor Ho advised his flock to search out the Shepherd’s Rod and see what they are about, we’d like to help the flock in this regard. Ho cannot be relied on to know the message truly, based on his deception already, so in order to get to the bottom of what they are really about they should review the actual message for themselves.

We call on Pastor Ho to prayerfully consider what he has done. Ask those within the church what was the family’s crime? Not just the leaders but those who developed friendships with this family, what disturbance and trouble did they cause? Did they show only Christ like comportment in accordance to the Scriptures? Did they force their beliefs upon others?

“Thus saith the LORD; Cursed is the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the LORD.” (Jer. 17:5)

“He who answers a matter before he hears it, it is folly and shame to him.” (Proverbs 18:13)

“Truth is eternal, and conflict with error will only make manifest its strength. We should never refuse to examine the Scriptures with those who, we have reason to believe, desire to know what is truth. Suppose a brother held a view that differed from yours, and he should come to you, proposing that you sit down with him and make an investigation of that point in the Scriptures; should you rise up, filled with prejudice, and condemn his ideas, while refusing to give him a candid hearing?

The only right way would be to sit down as Christians and investigate the position presented in the light of God’s word, which will reveal truth and unmask error. To ridicule his ideas would not weaken his position in the least if it were false, or strengthen your position if it were true. If the pillars of our faith will not stand the test of investigation,it is time that we knew it. There must be no spirit of Pharisaism cherished among us.” (Testimonies to Ministers, p.107)

The link below is searchable websites that help explain what the message is about.

http://mtccamp.org/local_news_modified_004.htm

https://godsloveandlaw.com/2015/01/17/who-really-is-a-davidian-seventh-day-adventist/

http://shepherds-rod.org/index.html

(actual video, posted July 7, 2018 –YouTube. The speech is 28:20 to 31:53 mark)

M.L Andreasen meets Victor Houteff (Part 2 of 2)

September 15, 2018

Image result for M.L Andreasen  Image result for victor houteff

Let’s review part one of our interview post. We found that the General Conference was basically firmly against the message of the Shepherd’s Rod. The leading men were against it from it’s inception when brother Houteff began to lead the Sabbath School lessons in 1929.

But the message did not fade away, for it gained such traction that the GC leaders needed a man to meet with Houteff and expose his movement as not of God. They had tried once before in setting up a meeting with VTH to “go over” his doctrines in a formal meeting. This ended in a total failure as the S.D.A leaders were later found out to have double crossed Houteff. This so called “get to the bottom of his teachings” meeting was smoke screen to show the gullible people that the teachings had been looked into and found wanting.

S.D.A and D.S.D.A historical accounts show that while this Los Angeles meeting was going on, GC leaders were back east in Washington D.C discussing strategies to put down the Shepherd’s Rod movement.

The man who they selected to “beard the lion” was M.L. Andreasen, the top respected scholar of the day.

Before we go further let’s review God’s word about how to tell if a movement is from Him.

“And now I say unto you, Refrain from these men, and let them alone: for if this counsel or this work be of men, it will come to nought: But if it be of God, ye cannot overthrow it; lest haply ye be found even to fight against God.” (Acts 5:38-39)

The interview took place December 15th and 16th, 1942. Brother Andreasen arrived at the official headquarters of the Davidian movement, known predominantly at that time as the Shepherd’s Rod group or people. (Note: for those who may not be aware, the Davidian Seventh-day Adventists are NOT the Branch Davidians, those well known for the Waco disaster in 1993. See our post we made in 2012 for information on this often confusing subject)

https://godsloveandlaw.com/2012/11/17/original-davidians-are-not-branch-davidians/

The two men met and then soon went into the reception room and sat down for the discussion. Andreasen took careful notes and later sent a full report to headquarters giving his first hand account of the meeting. The full transcript can be viewed on the aforementioned book in part one. Brother Augustus has compiled a comprehensive historical account of this meeting along with much history between the S.D.A and the D.S.D.A (A link for the purchase of the book will be provided at end of this post)

After describing the place (Mt. Carmel headquarters) in his report he says “ The most satisfactory part of the interview concerned the matter for which the interview had been sought: that of confirmation on his part that the public statements published in the two volumes of the “Shepherd’s Rod” were still his belief and teaching.”

We can see that M.L was attempting to verify whether VTH had changed his mind about what he had written. To this Houteff responded, “We do not work that way. We do not claim the words are inspired , but the idea is. We do not change our teaching, and have not done so. What is published we still stand by and always will.”

Thus, M.L was firmly handed his response. But being sent by the GC and knowing his goal to accomplish, M.L wrote his report in a slant that was appealing to the higher-ups, and we don’t mean God. This will become clear as we review it.

As brother Augustus pointed out in his book, when one wants to make of no effect someone’s work or art, they usually first try to destroy their image, paint them in a bad light to lessen their impact as good people or their work as good works. In fact the message tells us this very same ploy —

“..since the Enemy cannot get around the Truth, he does all he can to blacken character and to pick flaws in personalities.” (General Conference Special, p.8)

So M.L begins early in his report to start this blacken character work. He points out that a certain disgruntled former follower “Hazel Hendricks”, had written a small book describing what she thought were error and falsehood in the SRod. But M.L. discussed the accusations of “whippings” and other terrible treatments of the young children on the grounds. But when M.L brought this up, VTH denied it and offered to bring the children right then and there to clear it. This was not pursued by M.L.

Quick note on Hazel. Sister Bonnie Smith, who is still proclaiming the message at 88, personally told this author aobut the last time she saw Hazel Hendricks. It was at a Sabbath lunch and the two discussed their past. Mrs. Hendricks confided in sister Bonnie, that looking back she made a mistake and regretted what she had done. To this sister Bonnie told her it was not too late to make amends, of which Hazel could never (as far as we know publicly) come clean and repent. So sad when pride hinders us!

After this unsettling blow, M.L decides to further deride Houteff. “The writings of Mr. Houteff, which I have examined for the last few months somewhat critically, bear the evidence of a confused mind. He gives some very fantastic interpretations of the Scriptures, sometimes quoting the writings of Mrs. White, and at other times giving no authority whatsoever, except his own inferred inspiration.

He then goes on to basically mock interpretations such as Ezek. 4:9-17, Isaiah 7:21-22. However, while noting them as “fantastic” M.L gives no other idea as to their meaning. Thus, M.L sits upon the throne of judgment and renders a judgment without reasoning! In other words, Houteff is wrong but he doesn’t know why. They are just “fantastic”.

Continuing on in his black report, he then says, “The truth is while the majority of persons deceived by the “Shepherd’s Rod” are people that this denomination is better off without, there are some we cannot afford to lose.”  Huh?? With a wave of his hand M.L. judges the thousands of people who accepted the Rod as unworthy! If this is not mounting the judgment throne, tell us what is? The plain God’s truth is that there should be MORE Davidians among us today! Those who walk the talk.

“Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.” (Matt. 7:1-2)

However, at this point Andreasen has his first reflective moment. He may have been dwelling on the call for reformation that the Rod declares, he says, “Honest people are led astray by the call of the “Shepherd’s Rod” to reform, and by their pointing out practices that we do not countenance, and which yet exist within the denomination. The only safe way to meet this is that we examine thoroughly the things that need rectification and make a determined   and honest effort to eliminate all that will not stand the light of investigation.

To me it seems entirely inadequate to denounce the “Rod” people for their many errors if we do not profit by criticisms made.”

Next he goes into lamentation about what the S.D.A church is lacking. At this point , there can be no doubt that during the interview Houteff has struck a nerve. As we continue this will become more prevalent.

“The field is divided  on the subject of the Trinity. The vital doctrine of the 144,000 has ceased to be preached. Fantastic theories in regard to war.Hitler, and the future are being promulgated. The battle of Armageddon is a present source of discussion, and unauthorized books appear. The ever present question of the position which sister White should hold among us is a prolific cause of difficulty.

Our stand upon religious liberty, noncombatancy, health reform, recreation, amusements, Sabbath-keeping, the nearness of the Lord, are being discussed and questioned. while some of these questions may seem less important, others are vitally  significant. The fact remains that, in the matter of Bible study, — I mean official, authorized study– we are doing very little…

Mr, Houteff raised, decidedly, the question of our lack of unity and our spiritual impotency.”

At this point we clearly start to see that M.L. is reflecting on brother Houteff’s points and if the S.D.A church condemns the Rod’s position on reforms, then it cannot stand innocent if what is said is the truth.

Continuing on about what the Rod teaches, he says, “The “Shepherd’s Rod” makes much of the buying and selling going on in our churches on the Sabbath. I do not think we can defend this practice. Indeed, we do not defend it, but rather condemn it, as our resolutions show. But the practice continues… For years we have been advocating the need for revival and reformation… I conceive it to be a duty of the church in its official capacity to take action in this matter.”

What we have here is Andreasen basically echoing what the Rod proclaims. Yet, he cannot bring himself to concur with the movement, lest he forget what his mission is. At this point M.L. reverts back to his blacken mission course.

“In the first volume of the “Shepherd’s Rod” publication, there is what is called a partial list of sins of the Adventist church. Twelve sins are mentioned. This list is enlarged in later publications. Some of these so-called sins are trivial, some are not so trivial. They themselves are guilty of most of them, and of many more. In reality, their whole movement is unwholesome, illiterate, presumptive and, I am afraid, corrupt and devilish. This , however, does not help our case any.” 

Blacken is the correct word we read here. M.L. is planting his seeds of doubt strong and unmistakable,  “unwholesome, illiterate, presumptive and, I am afraid, corrupt and devilish.” 

Yet no where in this report does Andreasen establish the Scriptural reasons for the so-called false doctrines. Nor does he explain why the movement is so “devilish”. It’s an unambitious  black charge for the sake of tarnishment. The same unholy works the S.D.A leaders have promulgated since the Rod came on the scene. Except this time the church thought they could use the “master scholar” as their testimony to the ignorant and unaware in God’s church. It back fired!

After letting his best blacken charge stand, mysteriously he again reverts back to acknowledging the Rod’s points. It seems a real spiritual struggle is going on within Andreasen now. He has been awaken by the “lion” whom he said he would “beard”, meaning expose and conquer in the written report. Now the lion has made him reflect and he finishes his report with a rebuke of the then current S.D.A church condition!

“If we answer one charge on which we are sure and omit others, we give them weapons against us which we can ill afford to give them. Should they merely list the things we must, of necessity, omit in our answer, this list will expose our weakness. The question, “why have we not answered all the charges” will naturally arise in the mind of the reader. And we are not prepared to answer them until we have done some housecleaning… the opinion prevails that the General Conference is not interested in Bible study as such; that it is each man for himself, with the General Conference a mere onlooker. 

I have not written this , brethren,  without some trepidation and fear and a great deal of prayer. I might consider it none of my business;and I should  not have rushed in where angels might well fear to tread had I not been asked to do investigate the “Shepherd’s Rod.” Having been asked to do this work, I knew I would have to make some kind of report. I feared that I would find some charges that I could not refute and, wishing to do an honest piece of work, I could not ignore them.  So I am in a dilemma…

If I were to write an answer to the charges of the “shepherd’s Rod”, I would have  to omit  some of the most serious indictments they level against us– charges of conditions which we ourselves deplore, but do little about. But to do this would invite defeat… The truth is, brethren that this denomination is ripe for a revival and reformation such as we have never seen, and we are all looking to you for its inauguration… There are sins in Israel that can only be corrected by men in official positions…

I believe that I am beginning to understand when sister White says, “I seldom weep, but now I find my eyes blinded with tears; they are falling upon my paper as I write.” …

Sincerely your brother, 

M.L. Andreasen”

Wow, what we have witnessed in this report is truly eye-opening! The great S.D.A savior who was to go into the “lion’s den” and come out victorious, instead came out as a dog with his tail between his legs! He conscience was greatly affected by this interview and thus he ended up making the whole case for the Rod movement–reformation!

Sadly, M.L. Andreasen never did accept the Lord’s Rod message (Micah 6:9 and Mal. 4:5) as far as we know. He became involved in trying to correct some of the wrongs within the S.D.A church in the latter years of his life and was largely an outcast for it. Plainly then it appears this interview, whom many believe was with the last prophet to be sent to the S.D.A church, dramatically affected him from then on.

The whole lesson here is that God works for his people and yet the leaders are often the very ones who reject the message God’s gives. Now is our time to work brethren, let us learn from this very important lesson God sent us.

“These things happened to them as examples for us. They were written down to warn us who live at the end of the age.” (1 Cor. 10:11)

(For those interested in brother Augustus’ book  —  https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/what-every-seventh-day-adventist-should-know-about-the-shepherds-rod-garrick-d-augustus/1129276750?ean=9781491784006 )

 

M.L Andreasen meets Victor Houteff (Part 1 of 2)

September 8, 2018

Image result for M.L Andreasen         Image result for victor houteff

 

In the annals of our church history stands out one of the most prolific , yet not well-known, one on one interviews the church has ever had. The man inspired of our Lord to hand the mantle to another man, yet unfortunately it would end in bitterness and anguish by one man. In this post we will review this historic account of Pastor M.L. Andreasen and Minister Victor Houteff. There is a BIG lesson for us here. Let us carefully look at this lesson sent by God for our instruction.

“… you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (John 8:32)

Amen. Anytime we get closer to the Truth, learn it, discover it, challenged by it,  get surprised by it  -we MUST embrace it! For the Lord also warned us in the counter verse —

“He will use every kind of evil deception to fool those on their way to destruction, because they refuse to love and accept the truth that would save them.” (2 Thes. 2:10)

By nearly all accounts Pastor and theologian Andreasen was a gifted man. Well versed in God’s word and given the ability to translate God’s word with motivating skill.

Briefly Wikipedia says —

“He was one of the Seventh-day Adventist church’s most prominent theologians during the 1930s and 1940s. Andreasen held to the belief that Christians can overcome sin, known popularly as Last Generation Theology, controversial for its views on atonement and salvation. Andreasen became well known for his protests against Seventh-day Adventist church leaders during the last years of his life.”

But what many do not know is that Andreasen’s change in dealing with the S.D.A church appears to be due, in a significant way,  to the aforesaid one on one interview.

Our story starts in 1928 when Andreasen authors one of the most profound books in our Advent history called “Isaiah the Gospel Prophet”.

Front Cover

Later in 1929 the subject of Isaiah’s chapters was the first quarter’s Sabbath School lesson. The lesson was largely based on Andreasen’s in-depth study of Isaiah.  In 1929  brother Houteff began to teach the Sabbath School lessons in Olympic Exposition Park S.D.A Church in 1929, Los Angeles. It is during that year that Victor began to see new understandings from this part of Scripture.

There is something different when you or I search the Scriptures, possibly being “inspired” by them or even led by them to know “all truth”. Yet when one is “chosen” of God it is on quite another level indeed!

“Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.”  (2 Peter 1:20-21)

As Houteff explained the lessons, word soon spread among the church members, that something special was going on. For as the year went on the crowd began to grow sizeably and they began to have two lessons even after church. Yet the leaders were not so humble to accept new revelations.

Victor explains —

“The enemies of the message then left nothing unturned in their search for something against me, rather than to make sure that they were not turning down Truth.  They tried every hook and crook to pin something on me and to stop my activities, but found nothing and as a rule about 30 members of the church stayed in my special meetings each Sabbath afternoon.  Then came the time that the elders of the church refused to let us use the church for our meetings, and they made us all get out.

  But one of the sisters who was living in a big house right across from the church offered her place for the meetings, and there was a great uproar among the people around the church premises.  Some were for us and some were against us.  So it was that the house across from the church was filled that afternoon and many listened from the outside through the windows.  The enemies failed to break up our meetings, and the victory was ours.

   Next they forbade us to attend their church services, and they began to disfellowship those who still wanted to attend our meetings.  They tried to deport me, too, but failed.  Then they endeavored to get a court order against any of us going to the church on Sabbath, but lost out.  Once they called the police to have me arrested on false charges that I was disturbing the meetings, but after the officers in the police station heard my story and the deacon’s charges against me, he commanded the two policemen who brought us to the station to put us in their car again, and to take us right back to the church where they picked me up!

   After this the elders endeavored to put me in an insane asylum.  The “city manager” of Glendale himself (a Seventh-day Adventist) had come to this church that Sabbath morning to lay down the charges and to see me carried away and locked in the asylum.  After talking with me for a few minutes, though, the officer did nothing but to tell me that he would not bother me again!  Then the 200 lb. city manager felt smaller than my 135 lb. weight.

   They did all these unbecoming things and many others; besides, they talked and preached against me.  And though I had no one but the Lord to defend me at any time, yet in all these the victory was mine!” (Timely Greetings, vol. 2, no.35, p.23)

So no doubt the beginning of the Lord’s final message of “Elijah”(Mal. 4:5) began with strong headwinds. No doubt the great enemy , Satan, knew full well he must start his counter attack. Thus, this was the way that M.L Andreasen and other top leaders reacted , generally, throughout the Seventh-day Adventist community. Not so much with the laity, which to a sizeable decree, began to accept or at least acknowledge some truth within the message known as the  “Shepherd’s Rod”.

Soon the message had gained  enough traction throughout the denomination that the leaders were forced to hold a formal meeting with Houteff to review his teachings. This was known as the famous sit down meeting to once and for all look at the Rod. It was held in Los Angeles in February 1934. But, as might be expected, this meeting ended in a fiasco, with an unbelievable S.D.A double-crossing of brother Houteff. This is documented.

For an in depth review of what took place see this Tract–

http://shepherds-rod.org/Tracts/trac007.html

The message was not to be deterred. For several years after this charade of an honest “get to the bottom of the Rod” meeting, the Rod only grew stronger. Andreasen no doubt was one of the concerned leaders watching from the sidelines as the S.D.A could not put down the Rod movement . In December of 1942 he decided to get involved and on behalf of the General Conference to go out — “bearding the lion in his den”. Let us read the GC’s  file letter to Andreasen,

“Dear brother Andreasen: Just a line to say that the brethren still want you to write the reply to the Shepherd’s Rod, and they believe you are the man who is best qualified to do this work. .. The committee has voted today to authorize you to make a trip to the headquarters of the Shepherd’s Rod movement in Texas at such time as you are able to arrange for an absence from the Seminary, and spend as much there as you think wise..

We believe your idea of going out and ‘bearding the lion in his den’ is a very excellent one, and we are just glad to cooperate with you  in this matter and in any other way that we can  in order to make your work an outstanding success.” (File letter from W.H. Branson, General Vice-President -GC to Andreasen , July 30, 1942 *)

So because the Lord’s Rod message was doing its intended work in His vineyard, the SDA leaders continued their impeding work, and finally found, they believed,  their man to quash the movement by exposing its error and deception. Andreasen would not only be able to hold his own against Houteff, but would prove his “false theories” as just that–false.The great savior had been found to “beard the lion”!

But stop and think about this brethren, here you have a movement that announces ” .. the chief object of this publication  is bring about a reformation among God’s people. (SRod, vol. 1 preface)

The Davidians goal was to “reform” God’s people, in dress, worship, health, study habits, etc. yet the S.D.A church was getting a “man who is best qualified to do this work” whom they thought would put the movement down! The cronyism and club, the S.D.A hierarchy,  was not about to be overturned, by any movement, even by one from God!

….To be continued

( * thanks to brother Garrick Augustus for providing information used in these two part posts. His new book —  “What every Seventh-day Adventist should know about the Shepherd’s Rod” an in-depth book on the historical relations between Adventists and the Shepherd’s Rod movement)

Winning the Struggle

August 18, 2018

Image result for picture of a woman in prayer

In Early Writings, page 269-270 we read —

“I saw some, with strong faith and agonizing cries, pleading with God. Their countenances were pale and marked with deep anxiety, expressive of their internal struggle. Firmness and great earnestness was expressed in their countenances; large drops of perspiration fell from their foreheads. Now and then their faces would light up with the marks of God’s approbation, and again the same solemn, earnest, anxious look would settle upon them.

Evil angels crowded around, pressing darkness upon them to shut out Jesus from their view, that their eyes might be drawn to the darkness that surrounded them, and thus they be led to distrust God and murmur against Him. Their only safety was in keeping their eyes directed upward. Angels of God had charge over His people, and as the poisonous atmosphere of evil angels was pressed around these anxious ones, the heavenly angels were continually wafting their wings over them to scatter the thick darkness.

As the praying ones continued their earnest cries, at times a ray of light from Jesus came to them, to encourage their hearts and light up their countenances. Some, I saw, did not participate in this work of agonizing and pleading. They seemed indifferent and careless. They were not resisting the darkness around them, and it shut them in like a thick cloud.

The angels of God left these and went to the aid of the earnest, praying ones. I saw angels of God hasten to the assistance of all who were struggling with all their power to resist the evil angels and trying to help themselves by calling upon God with perseverance. But His angels left those who made no effort to help themselves, and I lost sight of them.

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

I saw that the testimony of the True Witness has not been half heeded. The solemn testimony upon which the destiny of the church hangs has been lightly esteemed, if not entirely disregarded. This testimony must work deep repentance; all who truly receive it will obey it and be purified.”

There is absolutely no doubt about it, those who take the battle field (spiritually) are to be engaged in a true struggle, a battle, at times “struggling with all their power to resist the evil angels and trying to help themselves by calling upon God with perseverance..”

Yet how few of us S.D.A engage in this battle! Let us look at a beautiful example of someone who went through the struggle and is pulling out ahead.

Sister M has been an Adventist for many years. We became friends several years ago and we even did a post about her circumstances here–

https://godsloveandlaw.com/2015/08/15/a-deadly-rumor/

But things have changed and we have great joy in updating the situation.

The Lord says that His people shall be gathered “one by one”. 

“And it shall come to pass in that day, that the LORD shall beat off from the channel of the river unto the stream of Egypt, and ye shall be gathered one by one, O ye children of Israel.”(Isaiah 27:12)

And He further  expressed more light in this hard and tough struggle to get His people to come aboard His last message of truth —

“There shall not come hither the fear of briers and thorns: but it shall be for the sending forth of oxen, and for the treading of lesser cattle.” Isa. 7:25, last part.

   The vineyard’s being digged with the mattock signifies that the beginning of the work of reformation will progress slowly and that it will require hard labor, but that each “hill” or church locality being digged will become a place “for the sending forth of oxen.”  In brief, at this particular time He will be sending missionaries into His neglected vineyard (church) instead of into the Gentile world.

   Though the work, moreover is to have a small hard, mattock-like beginning it will gain speed and will emerge from the mattock stage into the ox-plow stage — the stage which will see all the believers of Present Truth (except the “lesser cattle”) unitedly go forth to dig or plow other “hills” until all the thorns and briers shall be uprooted  throughout the land, the ground broken up, and the vineyard restored even beyond its original excellency.” (Tract 6, p.39)

Thus right now as workers we know very well, its TOUGH to be involved in this work. Not only are we pressed from “dark forces” but from our own! A double whammy at times!

But in our case, sister M did not give up despite being surrounded by evil forces to discourage her to quit studying, to ignore the Truth, she preserved until this week we heard from her and our joy was great.

No longer was she doubtful or wallowing. She confessed that she had “seen the light” which can only be the Spirit of Truth ” leading her (John 16:13).

To expound on her story a little more. She first learned of the Rod message by way of a DVD we handed about Daniel 2. She came over to our house and we watched it together. She was quite impressed, asking good solid questions like “Why are we not told of these truths in our SDA church?”

Then as our prior post showed the evil ones went on full mode attack, knocking her down (spiritually). So much so that she soon looked at me very suspiciously. But she continued to want to know the truth. To her credit she did not stop studying and wanting to know Truth.

Later we began to talk more and I mentioned that there was an older man, brother L, who was 86 and still believing the Lord’s Rod message, I put them in contact via phone. Over a period of weeks the two of them had several conversations and she began to slowly come out of her paranoia. She’d call and tell us that she was quite interested in knowing more. Well, as providence would have it soon her sister became ill in New York.

She mentioned to me that she was going to New York for a few weeks to help her sister out. I asked exactly where? The location was only about 1 hour from one of the headquarters of the SRod message — Mountain Dale , New York. I made arrangements to get one of the leaders there, brother J, to contact her when she arrived.

This was God moving in her life! The two hit it off and had numerous studies of the present truth message. Soon sister M was calling and telling me she was beginning to see the true light of the Lord’s Shepherd’s Rod (Micah 6:9 and 7:14).

Then after she moved back, sister M was no longer doubtful but quite interested in knowing more. The Lord’s Spirit of Truth guiding indeed!

“Do not sit down in Satan’s easy-chair of do-little, but arise, and aim at the elevated standard which it is your privilege to attain.” (Testimonies , vol.1. p.241)

You see brethren we all play a role in helping others to come into His light. Yours truly led off and then the baton was handed off to other brothers. Her struggle did not end with her “leaning on flesh” (listening to the time-worn standard SDA nay saying against the Lord’s Rod) a thing condemned by Scriptures (Jer. 17:5).  Rather it evolved into her seeing the light! She stayed in the fight!

Our Lord said —

“And he that overcometh, and keepeth My works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations..” (Rev. 2:26)

Leap for Joy!

April 28, 2018

Image result for picture of a man leaping for joy

In Luke 6:22-23 our Master said this —

“Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company , and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man’s sake. Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your reward is great in heaven: for in the like manner did their fathers unto the prophets.”

These words were fulfilled before our eyes a couple of weeks ago. Allow us to explain.

There are five Adventist churches in area. We (wife and I) live in a fairly large county called Coachella.  The experience came from one of these churches. It’s one of the older ones and has predominately older members. Our story will deal with a married couple, brother R and sister L.

They are members of one of the aforementioned churches  with brother R being a S.D.A member since 2009. BR (hereafter for brother R) joined the Palm Springs S.D.A church back in 2009. He enjoyed the church services and was moving up the ladder of leadership becoming a Deacon in 2010. But in early 2011 he happened to come home from services one Sabbath and searching the computer came across a site offering a unique Adventist message called “The 144,000 Who are They?”.

BR clicked it and began to listen. As he listened he became almost spell-bound, for the new truths were explained and all backed up by Scripture and Spirit of Prophecy, yet no one in the S.D.A church had ever explained any of the things in the report. The amazement became profound. “Why are these things not spoken of in our church?” BR wondered.

After all they were profoundly serious, showing a church judgement to come upon the S.D.A church BEFORE He comes in the clouds. As he listened he felt such great appreciation for having the opportunity to be exposed to these prophetic teachings, BR went to the room bowing in prayer and profusely thanking the Lord for being given guidance in what is in store for us Adventists.

“But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come.” (John 16:13)

Despite the great spiritual awakening BR was soon to witness an unfathomable rejection of the Lord’s Elijah message Truth.  While he found new brethren scattered around the county, he discovered nearly a whole lock stock and barrel rejection or non-interest in the prophesied Elijah message (Mal. 4:5) within the local S.D.A churches.

Soon BR got married and his wife and him would frequent other churches in the area. One in particular appealed to the couple. It was the aforementioned older conservative one. But one thing BR was consistent with–passing our present truth material (CD’s DVD’s Tracts, SOP material, etc.) For a good two years BR and his wife went off and on to this conservative church. Being generally welcome they received good treatment from the brethren there and especially enjoyed the church lunches. They gave an opportunity to discuss prophecy and other important aspects of the Elijah message.

Fast forward to a couple of weeks ago. The leaders, particularly the Pastor and the head Elder, made their move against BR and his wife. The Elder approached BR and told him he’d like to see him in the Pastor’s office after lunch.

BR instinctively knew that it was to be about the slander that so frequently comes against God’s people, SOP explains–

“Do not be unbelieving. 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 for the Church, vol. 8, p.130)

The workers of Christ today, as we have posted before have a large  X on their back spiritually speaking. And this mark is seen by the workers of darkness, yes, even those who cover themselves in false righteousness, many of those at the head of the church work!

Let us remember our King prophesied that Satan would sprew a flood of unconverted into the church to try to “carry her away.”

“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.” (Rev. 12:15)

The church right now is flat-out “flooded” with non-converts. Truth is not accepted unless it’s watered down and converted into a peace and safety form. BR , while friendly, did not back away from letting people know within the church that God loved them but that judgment is soon to come FIRST to His S.D.A church.

Nevertheless, some objected and instead of discussing the matter directly with BR and going the way of Scriptural procedure, they chose to go behind his back un-Christ like and spread false accusations against him and his wife.

So BR and sister L went into the Pastor’s room and heard accusations labeled against them. “We have been told you are a follower of Waco” the head Elder said. BR asked if he knew about the history of Waco? He did not except short bits and pieces. BR went into a brief history of  Mt. Carmel in Waco, Texas. Explaining how “Davidians” are all too often falsely connected with David Koresh and his BRANCH Davidian movement from Waco.

But as BR went into all this and then into the actual message of Elijah, he did not faze them at all. They were as blind to the Truth as they were before. The Pastor then explained how BR as a layman is not authorized to teach within  their church, even to discuss Scripture and SOP in studies! Can we believe that?? In other words all “teaching” is meaning one cannot discuss the Scriptures and SOP with others without getting the Pastor and head elder’s permission first (ie. church board) ? WOW!

Correct me if I am wrong but this is a definition of a cult. Yes brethren this is what we have come to! Instead of following the below counsel, we belittle, reject and sometimes “separate” brethren from our company. No such sitting down together, Christ  like and discussing specific aspects of the Scriptures and SOP. As Luke 6:22-23 says, the Lord foreseen it  all!

“It is a fact that we have the truth, and we must hold with tenacity to the positions that cannot be shaken; but we must not look with suspicion upon any new light which God may send, and say, “Really, we cannot see that we need any more light than the old truth (historic Adventism) which we have hitherto received, and in which we are settle. While we hold to this position, the testimony of the True Witness applies to our cases its rebuke, “And knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked.” Those who feel rich and increased with goods and in need of nothing, are in a condition before God, and they know it not.” (RH: August 7, 1894)

“Those who allow prejudice to bar the mind against the reception of truth cannot receive the divine enlightenment. Yet, when a view of Scripture is presented, many do not ask, Is it true–in harmony with God’s word? but, By whom is it advocated? and unless it comes through the very channel that pleases them, they do not accept it. So thoroughly satisfied are they with their own ideas that they will not examine the Scripture evidence with a desire to learn, but refuse to be interested, merely because of their prejudices.” (Testimonies to Ministers, p.105-106)

 

“..beware of rejecting that which is truth. The great danger with our people has been that of depending upon men and making flesh their arm. Those who have not been in the habit of searching the Bible for themselves, or weighing evidence, have confidence in the leading men and accept the decisions they make; and thus many  will reject the very messages God sends to His people, if these leading brethren do not accept them.

No one should claim that he has all the light there is for God’s people. The Lord will not tolerate this. He has said,”I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it.” Even if all our leading men should refuse light and truth, that door will still remain open. The Lord will raise up men who will give the people the message for this time.

Truth is eternal, and conflict with error will only make manifest its strength. We should never refuse to examine the Scriptures with those who, we have reason to believe, desire to know what is truth. Suppose a brother held a view that differed from yours, and he should come to you, proposing that you sit down with him and make an investigation of that point in the Scriptures; should you rise up, filled with prejudice, and condemn his ideas, while refusing to give him a candid hearing?

The only right way would be to sit down as Christians and investigate the position presented in the light of God’s word, which will reveal truth and unmask error. To ridicule his ideas would not weaken his position in the least if it were false, or strengthen your position if it were true. If the pillars of our faith will not stand the test of investigation,it is time that we knew it. There must be no spirit of Pharisaism cherished among us.” (Testimonies to Ministers, page 106-107)

At the end of the meeting BR and sister L kneeled and prayed for light to come to the church. Did it do any good? Well the very next Sabbath BR and sister L were asked to not come to the church any more. Prophecy fulfillment —

“Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company , and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man’s sake. Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your reward is great in heaven: for in the like manner did their fathers unto the prophets.” (Luke 6:22-23)

The Lord is about to do something brethren and His word is to come to past let us stand strong despite the evil that surrounds us. Keep your head up and carry on with the Truth, His work to be done in the vineyard.

“The tares and wheat are now commingled, but then the one hand that alone can separate them will give to everyone his true position. Those who have had the light of truth, and heard the warning message, heard the invitation to the marriage supper-farmer, merchant, lawyer, false shepherds who have quieted the convictions of the people, unfaithful watchmen who have not sounded the warning or known the time of night–all who have refused obedience  to the laws of the kingdom of God, will have no right therein.”(Testimonies to Ministers, p.235) 

“There is a lack of moral and spiritual power throughout our Conferences. Many churches do not have light in themselves. The members do not give evidence that they are branches of the True Vine, by bearing much fruit to the glory of God, but appear to be withering away…They understand not the true application of the Scriptures, nor the power of God. They have eyes, but they see not; ears have they, but they hear not; they continue in their evil ways, yet regard themselves as the privileged, obedient people who are doers of the word.

A carnal security and ease in Zion prevail. Peace, peace, is sounded in her borders, when God has not spoken peace. They have forfeited the terms of peace; there is reason for an alarm to be sounded in all “my holy mountain.” The sinners in Zion should be afraid, in a time when they do not expect it, sudden destruction will surely come upon all who are at ease.” (RH December 23, 1890)

 “Whenever the people of God are growing in grace, they will be constantly obtaining a clearer understanding of His word. They will discern  any new lighand beauty in its sacred truths. This has been true in the history of the church in all ages, and thus will continue to the end. But as real spiritual life declines, it has ever been the tendency to cease to advance in the knowledge of the truth. Men rest satisfied with the light already received from God’s word, and discourage any further investigation of the Scriptures.

They become conservative, and seek to avoid discussion…When no new questions are started by investigation of the Scriptures, when no difference of opinion arises which will set men to searching the Bible for themselves, to make sure that they have the truth, there will be many now, as in ancient times, who will hold to tradition, and worship they know not what.” (5T pp. 706-707).

 

Water Off A Duck’s Back

February 10, 2018

Image result for picture of water off a duck's back

Many of us have heard the old saying “like water off a duck’s back”. This is often saying that something is not being comprehended, instructions or warnings not followed or acknowledged by someone.  This saying is applicable to our discussion in this post, allow us to explain.

Those of us whose passion is to spread the final message of Elijah to our church are all too often aware of this exact symbolic action. We try to spread the word to all listening ears within our church, yet our counsel, advice, warnings, etc fall on deaf ears. Scripture tells us of our duty and the consequences we may encounter —

“And He said unto me, Son of man, I send thee to the children of Israel, to a rebellious nation that hath rebelled against Me: they and their fathers have transgressed against Me, even unto this very day. For they are impudent children and stiffhearted. I do send thee unto them; and thou shalt say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD.

And they, whether they will hear, or whether they will forbear, (for they are a rebellious house,) yet shall know that there hath been a prophet among them. And thou, son of man, be not afraid of them, neither be afraid of their words, though briers and thorns be with thee, and thou dost dwell among scorpions: be not afraid of their words, nor be dismayed at their looks, though they be a rebellious house.” (Ezek. 2:3-6)

Although spoken to Ezekiel in ancient days, these words directly apply to us modern-day Elijah messengers in anti-type. We are to speak the prophetic words to our brethren whether they hear or not. The “not” of course is the aforementioned water off their backs. The message tell us more specifics concerning giving this life and death message —

“The Responsibility of Those Who Bear the Message.

   Since Ezekiel represents those whose hearts the message has reached, then to them the Lord is speaking when He says: “Son of man, I have made thee a watchman unto the house of Israel: therefore hear the word at My mouth, and give them warning from Me.  When I say unto the wicked, Thou shalt surely die; and thou givest him not warning, nor speakest to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life; the same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand.  Yet if thou warn the wicked, and he turn not from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul.

   “Again, When a righteous man doth turn from his righteousness, and commit iniquity, and I lay a stumbling block before him, he shall die: because  thou hast not given him warning, he shall die in his sin, and his righteousness which he hath done shall not be remembered; but his blood will I require at thine hand.  Nevertheless if thou warn the righteous man, that the righteous sin not, and he doth not sin, he shall surely live, because he is warned; also thou hast delivered thy soul.” Ezek. 3 :17-21.

   Because of the unfaithfulness of the former watchmen, the Lord makes the antitypical Ezekiel — he and she who “sigh and cry for the abominations  that be done in the midst thereof” (the church) — a “watchman” (Ezek. 3:17) in their stead.  Be careful, therefore, Brother, Sister, lest you also betray your trust and find yourself thrust out.  “Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall.” 1 Cor. 10:12.  Only those who thus humble themselves now, will the Lord exalt in due time to be His Faithful Watchmen to Stand Before the Unfaithful.” (Tract 1, p.41-42)

Here in clear words we see that our job is to give the warnings, regardless of what they say or do. If they let the water(Truth) slide right off their back, so be it, our job is to put the water on them to see if it soaks in. Praise the Lord when it does!

Recently on our sister blog site “HearYetheRod” we had a long discussion with a brother who we at first thought wanted to know more truth in regard to the message. Yet after a few back and forth it was clear he was just there to prove how his version of the truth was right, not ours. We carefully explained that the message must be in accordance with the writings and what It says in total (weight of evidence), not our own ideas of what It says and in this case not specifically using one or two verses to turn the other 8 or 10 off.

Long story short, after a couple of weeks of this, the Lord “supped” with me and said –enough. All it was was a round and round circus. It was due to the fact that clear straight references were not being comprehended or acknowledged. Instead false interpretations of clear texts put forth.

Let me briefly give some specifics. SOP has this quote —

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

As we present truth believers know, when we want the right context and interpretation of God’s word, we go to His spokesmen –the prophets. This whole lesson is taught in Zech. 4 (see this post for more info)

https://godsloveandlaw.com/2014/07/12/zechariah-4-gods-method-of-revealing-truth/

But the brother did not do this. He instead decides to make his own ideas and interpretations. He told me that this could very well be about EGW talking about “heaven’s work”. He supported this by jumping out of context over to Education, p.15 where she talks about further work to do , including in heaven. So then according to him she was not talking about further work on this earth after she is raised but about heaven’s work.

Even though the context of SOP’s Testimonies quote in that chapter 7 clearly shows that she was talking about work as in here on earth, trying to help save lost souls, it didn’t faze him. So after seeing that he denied EGW’s own contextual meaning I continued with the Rod quote, surely he wouldn’t deny this also would he?

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

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

   “Your work, my work, will not cease with this life.  For a little while we may rest in the grave, but, when the call comes, we shall, in the kingdom of God, take up our work once more.” — Testimonies, Vol. 7, pg. 17. (TG, vol. 2, no.7, p.13-14)

Obviously the “context” of that statement in the Lord’s Rod shows what work she was talking about. For it is in the “time of trouble, such as never was..” Yet after this powerful clear statement what I saw was a clear case of water off a duck’s back. He remained steadfast that the Testimonies quote was not speaking of EGW working again in probationary time but after , in heaven.

Time wasting is what we’ll get if our clear references are ignored , twisted or not addressed. Now if this brother had admitted He did not know about the Lord’s Rod, then I could see his dilemma and understand his limited light, but he professed knowledge/belief (ie he has studied some of the writings).

“..let us remember that no revealed Truth ever came, nor ever will come through the halls of learning.   It is, therefore, of vital importance that you let alone the Angel of the Laodiceans lest you, too, be spued out (Rev. 3:16).  If he chooses to feed on his empty sermons, still teaching that the church needs no more Truth, that she has enough to carry her through the pearly gate, that he can without Inspiration interpret the Scriptures and know what Truth is, then let him himself eat his unholy feast.  Tell him that you prefer to live on “meat in due season” (Matt. 24:45) direct from the Throne of God. (TG, vol.1, no.12, p.17)

“Unbelief and indifference in revealed Truth is an insult to God and a sin against the Holy Ghost Who leads into all Truth.” (TG, vol. 1, no.41, p.25)

In closing, we are to continue our work helping others see/listen and learn this message but sometimes we run into “ducks” and this should be a signal to us to “let them alone.”

“Then came his disciples, and said unto him, Knowest thou that the Pharisees were offended, after they heard this saying? But He answered and said, Every plant, which My heavenly Father hath not planted, shall be rooted up. Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.” (Matt. 15:12-14)

 

 

 


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