My mother was a devoted and active Baptist.
She was a leader in the Children's Division of the Sunday School of the
local church where we lived in Iowa. She was also an active member and
regular attendant of the Woman's Missionary Auxiliary. I recall one summer
afternoon upon her return from one such meeting, she told me about the
devotional study that day. It had made a deep impression upon her mind.
The guest speaker related to the group the events of the Dark Day of May
19, 1780, and the Falling of the Stars on the night of November 13, 1833.
Mother said to me, "William, just think in less than two years, it'll
be 100 years since the last great sign Jesus gave." The year was
1931, and the guest speaker was Bertha E. Jorgensen, a retired Seventh-day
Adventist Bible Worker.
I did think. I wondered if I would grow
up to be a man. The end seemed so near. Would it be five years yet?
That Fall, the same retired Bible Worker would give my mother and me
a series of 22 Bible studies. We would be her last converts to the Truth
before she would go to her rest. But time has continued, and those five
years have lengthened into plus ten times five.
Little did I dream, or for that matter
anyone else in that small Seventh-day Adventist company, that some of
us would live to see a prophecy of Jesus fulfilled in our day as verily
as those living in 1833. But we have! That is what this manuscript is
all about - THE HOUR AND THE END! It is written for, and dedicated to,
all who desire truth and who with an open mind will search for it. As
you read, it is my hope and prayer that your mind will be guided by
the Spirit of truth, and that the realization that we have reached the
end of all things earthly will stir your hearts as mine was stirred
that day long ago in 1931. WHG
Chapter I - Recent
Adventist Literature on Luke 21:24
1952 Bible Conference -- In
1952, a Bible Conference was held in the Sligo Seventh-day Adventist
Church from September 1-13. Various theological and prophetic studies
were presented at the Conference. One topic, which was assigned to Arthur
S. Maxwell, then editor of The Signs of the Times, was "The
Imminence of Christ's Second Coming." In.the presentation of his
study, Maxwell listed three areas of unfulfilled prophecy - developments
in the United States, developments in Palestine, and the Seven Last
The "developments in Palestine" concerned
the fulfillment of Luke 21:24. Keep in perspective the time of this
Bible Conference - 1952. Just four years prior in 1948, the Jewish state
of Israel had been re-established. In the light of this background,
observe carefully Maxwell's penetrating observations. He said: -
recent dramatic restoration of the nation of Israel has focused the
attention of mankind once
more on Palestine. Many Christians have mistakenly permitted themselves
to believe that the return of thousands of unconverted Jews to their
native land is a fulfillment of the promises to Abraham, Issac, and
Jacob, not realizing that, since the death of the Son of God on Calvary,
there is no salvation, nor any eternal homeland, except for those who
believe in Him and accept His sacrifice.
However, there is
one prophecy concerning Palestine that we should all be watching with
special care. Said Jesus, "Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the
Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled." Luke 21:24.
For nineteen centuries
Jerusalem has been trodden down of the Gentiles. It is still trodden
down of the Gentiles. Despite the amazing prowess of the Israeli troops,
the ancient city of Jerusalem is still in Arab hands. A Mohammedan mosque
still stands upon the site of Solomon's Temple. Victorious as were the
forces of Israel in every other part of Palestine, they failed to take
the most dazzling objective of all. Mysteriously they were held back
from achieving this most cherished goal, this culminating triumph, as
by an unseen hand.
What could be the
reason? Only that the times of the Gentiles are not yet fulfilled.
Centuries ago Israel
was not permitted to enter Palestine for a certain time because "the
iniquity of the Amorites" was "not yet full" (Gen.15:16);
that is, not until the probationary time allotted to the Amorites had
It may well be that
the same principle applies today, on a wider scale. If so, then Jerusalem
is to remain trodden down by Gentiles till the probationary time of
all Gentiles has run out. If this be correct, how much hinges upon the
fate of this ancient city and the power that occupies it! Our
Firm Foundation, pp. 230-231 (See
In 1952, the ministry of the Seventh-day Adventist Church
was alerted in regard to the prophecy of Jesus concerning Jerusalem.
While the studies given at the Bible Conference did not carry the "imprimatur"
of the General Conference, the theologians of the Church, and the Administrative
leaders of the world field were all present at this conference. It is
of interest to note what Dr. Denton E. Rebok, secretary of the Bible
Conference, had to say in his "introductory" remarks as found
in Volume I of the Conference report. He wrote: - The
General Conference as a body is in no way responsible for the studies
presented. They are not an official pronouncement of the church. They
do, however, represent the best thinking on the part of sincere, honest,
earnest, devoted, loyal men - Seventh-day Adventists, first, last, and
always - who have tried to give expression to our conception of the
great truths believed, held, and taught by Seventh-day Adventists generally
in all parts of the earth. (Ibid., I Vol. I, p. 13)
p 2 -- Elder W. H. Branson, president of the
General Conference at the time, in a report that appeared earlier in
the Ministry (July, 1952), enumerated who were to be in attendance
at the Bible Conference. He wrote: - According
to the action of the Autumn Council, the personnel of the conference
will consist of the following individuals:
The members of the
General Conference Committee who will be in attendance at the 1952 Biennial
Council, and others who may be invited to the council:
From North America:
Two Bible teachers from each senior college, to be chosen
by their respective boards.
b. One Bible teacher from each junior college, to
be chosen by their respective boards.
to as many evangelists from each union conference as there are local
conferences in the union, to be appointed by the respective union committees.
The editors of our leading periodicals.
The book editors of our leading publishing houses.
from the Theological Seminary.
the overseas divisions: a minimum of three in addition to the president
of the field. (Ibid. p. 14)
It was before such a gathering of the leadership of
the Church that Elder Arthur S. Maxwell called attention to the significance
of Luke 21:24. This writer was there as a delegate under section "c"
and can tell you what happened in his case, and I do not believe that
my response was much different from the others present. I heard but
perceived not, because of the conditioning received over the years in
regard to the Jews returning to Palestine.
The Twentieth Century Bible Course
It is well known that The Twentieth Century Bible
Course is a means used by the Church as an evangelistic tool. It
represents the teachings of the Church in regard to interpretation of
Bible prophecy and points of theology. In Lesson 5, captioned - "Time
Running Out" - the prophecy of Luke 21:24 is declared to be fulfilled
in our day. The #2 question is - "What sign did Jesus give that
would indicate when the destruction of the city [of Jerusalem] was
at hand?" Luke 21:20 is given as the Bible answer. Then this
note follows: - The
city of Jerusalem was surrounded by the Roman armies in A.D. 66. After
a period of time the army withdrew and the Christians, recognizing the
sign given by Christ (Matthew 24:15-20) fled the city and did not return.
In A.D. 69 the Romans returned, and destroyed the city in A.D. 70. Nearly
a million people died or were sold into slavery at that time, but not
a single Christian died. They watched for the sign Christ had given
and obeyed His instructions. The temple was burned to the ground
as Christ had foretold (even though the soldiers had orders not to destory
it). Christ foresaw the future and outlined it to His followers so that
they could be saved. (Emphasis
The third question reads:
"How long did Christ say that Jerusalem would be trodden down?"
Luke 21:24 is given as the place in the Bible to find the
answer. Then this note follows: - Old
Jerusalem and the temple site has been occupied largely by the Gentile
nations until 1967 when the Jews took possession of it in a "lightning
victory." This portion of Christ's prophecy was fulfilled in our
day! (See Exhibit #2)
Sabbath School Lesson Helps -- "The
Witness of Jesus" was the subject of the second quarter's lessons
(1980) for the Adult Division of the Sabbath School. Dr. Jean Zurcher
not only authored these lessons, but his book, Christ of the Revelation,
was translated into English as a "Helps"
p 3 -- for the quarter's lessons. In this book
was noted the fulfillment of Jesus' prophecy of Luke 21:24. Dr. Zurcher
wrote: - We
shall not linger over the numerous signs given by Jesus in this discourse.
[Matthew 24, Mark 13, and Luke 21] One only will occupy our attention,
the one that especially deals with time. Even in our days it constitutes
a critical point in the political world: Jerusalem. In fact, Jerusalem
is both the beginning and culmination of Jesus' prophecy. For Him, as
for Daniel the prophet, the history of nations, as that of the people
of Israel, is written in the setting of the tragic history of Jerusalem.
The latter is a sign by which the fate of the former is determined.
So having predicted the destruction of Jerusalem and the dispersion
of the Jews "into all nations," Jesus declared, "Jerusalem
shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles
be fulfilled. (Luke 21:24).
Few today would
deny the precision of this prophecy. The destruction of Jerusalem by
the Roman armies in AD 70 is a historical fact commemorated on the triumphal
arch of Titus in Rome. The dispersion of the Jews among all nations
is still a reality. As for Jerusalem, nineteen centuries of history
should provide adequate proof that it has been "trodden down of
the Gentiles" - first by the Romans, then by the Arabs, next by
different Christian nations during the Crusades, fourth by the Turks
up to the end of the first world war, then by the British, and finally
by the Jordanians until the Six-Day War in June, 1967.
This prophecy of
Jesus was a sign to the Christians of the Apostolic Church, who lived
at the beginning of the times of the Gentiles, and it remains a sign
for us who live at the end of the times of the Gentiles. Again, we must
know how to discern its meaning.
It is not a matter
of our seeing in the return of the Jews to Palestine and in the Israeli
conquest of Jerusalem a sign of the approaching conversion of the Jews,
as so many Christians think. Nothing in Jesus' prophecy allows such
an interpretation. However, if we cannot see that Jerusalem is an exceptional
sign of the times, then might we not be placing ourselves in the same
position as the religious leaders who knew how to "discern the
face of the sky" but could not discern the obvious "signs
of the times"?
In order for us
to understand Jesus' statement, three questions need answering. First,
what exactly does the expression "times of the Gentiles" mean?
Then what should be understood by the fulfillment of the times of the
Gentiles? Finally, what connection is there between the retaking of
Jerusalem by the Jews and the fulfillment of the times of the Gentiles?
As I understand
Biblical language, the times of the Gentiles is the period set aside
by God for the evangelization of the heathen nations. It is not the
time needed for them to be converted to Christianity, as some think,
but for them to hear the gospel. It is in this sense that Jesus said:
"This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached for a witness unto
all nations; and then shall the end come" (Matthew 24:14).
I believe that the
times of the Gentiles began in AD 34, when the prophetic seventy weeks
that God set aside for the people of Israel ended. ... And if I have
understood the prediction of Jesus properly, this time will be "fulfilled"
when Jerusalem shall cease to "be trodden down of the Gentiles."
The fact that since 1967 Gentiles no longer have occupied Jerusalem
means, therefore, that we are now living at the end of "the times
of the Gentiles."
Jerusalem here constitutes
the last sign of the times by which the Lord shows us that the history
of this world is coming to its climax and that the restoration of all
things is at hand. (pp. 71-72; See
In 1952, the ministry
of the Church was alerted to the coming fulfillment of Luke 21:24. In
1980, the whole Sabbath School was given an opportunity to know that
the prophecy had been fulfilled. During this same period, those studying
the doctrines and teachings of the Church were told - "This portion
of Christ's prophecy was fulfilled in our day!" With this background,
as found in Adventist literature on prophecy, 1 it should
be irrelevant to spend time proving the validity of the fulfillment
of Luke 21:24 to Seventh-day Adventists. We should rather be seeking
to discover the significance of this already fulfilled prophecy to our
own work and
p 4 -- mission. We should
know and appreciate what Jesus was giving in prophetic legacy to His
followers. We should also become aware of the large amount of historical
data which adds significance to the dates which mark the fulfillment
of Luke 21:24.
In the coming chapters, we shall discuss and give that
data, then we shall devote the last part of the study to the meaning
of Luke 21:24 for the work and mission of the Seventh-day Adventist
1 -- In
1974, a series of three Bible Conferences were held in the North American
Division of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. At each of these conferences,
Dr. Herbert C. Douglass presented a topic on "The Unique Contribution
of Adventist Eschatology." In these presentations, he stated -
"Adventists do not see theological importance in the establishment
of the Jewish state in 1948 or the annexation of Old Jerusalem in 1967."
(p. 6) Then in his book, The
by the Pacific Press in 1979, he makes the same assertion, however,
changing the emphasis to a prophetic significance. In the book, Douglass
wrote - "Although Seventh-day Adventists are premillennialists,
they do not see prophetic importance in the establishment of the Jewish
state in 1948, or the annexation of Old Jerusalem in 1967. ..."
It should be noted
that in Chapter I above, none of the sources cited refer to the date,
1948, as being a fulfillment of any prophecy. However, both Dr. Zurcher
and the author of the 20th Century Bible lessons saw definite significance
in the retaking of Old Jerusalem by the Israelis in 1967. In fact, Zurcher
emphasizes the point that if one cannot see "that Jerusalem is
an exceptional sign of the times," he could be placing himself
in the same category with the "religious leaders who knew how to
'discern the face of the sky' but could not discern the obvious 'signs
of the times.'"
Douglass is not
listed among the delegates to the 1952 Bible Conference, and so was
perhaps totally unaware of Maxwell's presentation. The English translation
of Zurcher's book came one year after the Pacific Press had published
his book - The End. However, Douglass' assertions are given without
support or documentation. They do indicate an awareness of the prophecy
and what could be its fulfillment. One is left with the impression that
Douglass is most reluctant to come to grips with this prophecy because
of what the significance of its fulfillment would be to the thesis of
The same Pacific
Press that published Douglass' book - The End - in 1979, also
published some years earlier in 1898 a book by James Edson White - The
Coming King. In that book, Edson White had written: - We also
read that "Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until
the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled." Luke 21:24. Jerusalem
has never again come into possession of the Jews, and will not until
"the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled." This will be when
the work of the gospel is finished. (p. 98; See
p 5 -- Chapter II
21:24 in Context
Part of Jesus' Prophetic Legacy to His Church --
The prophecy of Luke 21:24 is a part of a
prophetic outline which Jesus gave to His disciples on the Mount of
Olives, Tuesday prior to His great sacrifice on Calvary. What Jesus
said is recorded in all three of the Synoptic Gospels - Matthew 24,
Mark 13 and Luke 21.
The day following His triumphal entry into Jerusalem,
Monday, He cleansed the temple the second time. He charged the Jewish
leadership with making His house "a den of thieves."
(Matt. 21:13) On Tuesday, upon His return to the Temple, He was met
and challenged by the chief priests and elders of the people as to His
authority to do what He had done the day before. (Matt. 21:23) After
putting them to silence, Jesus spoke in the hearing of the multitude,
the most scathing denunciations of the religious leaders of Israel they
had ever heard. (Matt. 23:1-36) Then He declared - "Behold, your
house is left unto you desolate. ... and Jesus went out." (Matt.
This pronouncement and act of Jesus shocked the disciples.
Hurriedly following Him from the Temple precincts, they sought to bring
Him to reality as they perceived reality to be. One of the disciples
- speaking the sentiments of all - said to Jesus: "Master, see
what manner of stones and what buildings are here!" (Mark 13:1)
What were they saying? "Jesus, you spoke too hastily. Look here.
See these great buildings. Look at the massive rocks which have been
used in the building of the Temple. How can You say, that this Temple,
the center of all our religious worship is now desolate? Is it going
to be set aside? Jesus, not backing down one inch said in response -
"Seest thou these great buildings? there shall not be left one
stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down." (Mark 13:2)
This stunned them. Silence reigned during the entire walk from the Temple
to the Mount of Olives where they would spend the night.
While sitting together on the Mount, four of the disciples
ventured to ask Jesus "When shall these things be? and what shall
be the sign of Thy coming, and of the end of the world?" (Matt.
24:3) To the disciples, if the Temple was going to be destroyed, that
had to be the end of the world. So to them, it was just one question.
In answering their question, Jesus mingled the signs marking the two
events. But in giving general signs which would apply to both events,
He outlined three specific signs which would mark major epochs from
the time of the Apostles to His second coming. Note these events as
given in Luke 21:
1) And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed
with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh. Then let
them which be in Judea flee to the mountains; and let them which are
in the midst of it depart out; and let not them that are in the country
enter thereinto. (Luke 21:20-21)
2) And there shall be signs in
the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars. (Luke 21:25) ["The
sun shall be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the
stars shall fall from heaven." - Matt. 24:29]
3) Jerusalem shall be trodden
down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.
It is important to understand that these three prophetic
signs were not given in
p 6 -- symbolic representation. They were given
in literal language so that when the event did occur, one could look
back upon the historical happening and say - "Look what has taken
place. This fulfills what Jesus said." Then the one recognizing
the event would need to ask further - "Since this has happened,
what is Jesus saying to me now?"
By understanding this prophecy of Jesus in Luke 21:24
in its literal sense, we are but following a principle used by our spiritual
forefathers. In A Symposium on Biblical Hermeneutics, Don F.
Neufeld wrote a section on "Biblical Interpretation in the Adventist
Movement." One principle which was paramount to these students
of the Bible was - "The Bible must be interpreted according to
the plain, obvious, and literal import unless a figure of speech is
employed." Then Neufeld comments - "This rule was a recurring
theme at a time when critics attempted to demolish the positions taken
by the Adventists." (p. 119)
Some Definitions -- It should be clearly understood
in the study of Luke 21:24 that when Jerusalem, or the nation of Israel,
is referred to in its present historical setting, it is not that
the city of Jerusalem is to be considered as the holy city of God, or
the nation of Israel as once more God's chosen people. This relationship
is no more, and never will be again. The times of the Jewish nation
as the people of God ended in AD 34 in harmony with the prophecy given
to Daniel (9:24). However, this fact does not exclude an equally important
fact; that is, events in the history of Jerusalem can still be in fulfillment
of Bible prophecy. For example, Jerusalem was no longer the holy city
of God in AD 66, yet the surrounding of that city by Cestius fulfilled
a sign given by Jesus. It was so understood by the Christians, and when
Cestius withdrew from the city, they fled from the coming destruction
which Jesus prophesied.
We find in the Greek language, the word translated
- "Gentiles" - is the same word for "nations" -
(ta ethne). In Old
Testament times, the inhabited world was divided into two groups - the
Gentiles or nations, and the people of God, which was Israel. In the
New Testament, it is again the nations, and the New Israel of God, the
Church. As God committed His message of grace as revealed in the sanctuary
model to Israel to give to the world, so also to the Church, God has
committed the message of Christ, the Word made flesh - the New Tabernacle
- to be given to the nations. But in giving the events which were to
serve as signs to His people, Jesus connected two of those signs with
historical happenings in the history of the city of Jerusalem.
Because of this parallel relationship between Israel
of old and the New Israel of God, it is mandatory that we clearly understand
the use and meaning of "Jerusalem" in both prophecy and history.
In the Old and New Testaments when Jerusalem is referred to, it is primarily
in a very historical setting - the literal city. Such is the case in
Luke 21:24. The same city which was to be surrounded by Roman armies
is the same city which was to be trodden down of the nations until the
times of the nations or Gentiles be fulfilled. The term, "Jerusalem,"
is also used to represent the Church. It is so used in the Writings
of Ellen G. White in connection with Ezekiel 9. (Testimonies for
the Church, Vol. 3, p. 267) Paul uses the term to refer to "the
mother of us all," but in so doing assures that this "mother"
is above, and is not an earthly entity. (Gal. 4:26; Heb. 12:22)
It also needs to be kept in view that even though the
question about the end times arose over the discussion as to what was
to take place in regard to the Temple, Jesus did not say that
the Temple was to be trodden down of the nations till the times of the
Gentiles (nations)be fulfilled. He clearly indicated that the same city
which was to be surrounded by the alien armies was to be the city whose
history would give the sign by which Christians could tell when the
times of the Gentiles would be fulfilled. TOP
p 7 --
Chapter III --
Analysis of Luke 21:24-25
"The Distress of Nations" -- Verses
24 and 25 of Luke 21 are closely associated together. The KJV tends
to obscure this close relationship. In both verses, the English words,
"Gentiles" and "nations" are translated from the
same Greek word. Using the word - nations - in each instance, these
verses would read - "And Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the
nations (eqnwn), until the times
of the nations (eqnwn) be fulfilled.
And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars,
and upon earth distress of nations (eqnwn),
with perplexity." In other words, the ending of "the times
of the Gentiles," or nations is closely associated with "the
distress of nations, with perplexity."
The Greek word for "distress" is Vunoch
which means "imprisoned, in the narrows, or straits." The
added phrase - "with perplexity" (en
aporia) conveys the picture of nations
unable to meet the demands placed upon them financially, or the inability
to solve the monetary stress. (See The Vocabulary of the Greek New
Testament by Moulton & Milligan, both articles,
aporew & aporia)
It is an interesting fact that the same year which marked
the closing period of the times of the Gentiles - 1967 - is also the
year which marked the beginning of the financial woes of the nations.
In a Special Issue (July 4, 1974) of Myers' Finance & Energy,
C. V. Myers wrote: [Gordon Tether in the London Financial Times
(June 28, 1974) noted Myers as being "the well-known Canadian financial
expert."] - It
has now been established over the course of the last seven years - since
1967 - that there is nothing in this world the international monetary
authorities can do to stem the advance of gold, or to stem the collapse
of inflation - or to avoid the enormous deflation - the global liquidity
crunch - and the resulting depressions. Don't doubt this. The monetary
morons have demonstrated it to you time and again. Fail! Fail! Fail!
For seven years
things have gone from bad to worse; the US$ has been devalued; inflation
has undermined world confidence in money; and now the bankruptcies come.(pp.
Again in 1975, Myers wrote: -- From
all that I have observed of international [monetary] conferences since
1967 I do not believe that any conference is going to come up with any
workable answer. It seems that the situation will just continue to deteriorate.
Only six months
ago we heard every monetary authority in the world shouting, "either
we lick inflation or we are doomed. This is the battle of the century."
President Ford said, we have a war, and we intend to fight this war
against inflation. The way he is fighting the war against inflation
is to add a $70 to $100 billion deficit to the U.S. budget. What happened
to all the dire predictions of the result of inflation?
All brains are stunned.
They see no answer - so now they begin to think no answer is necessary.
Or at least they have decided there is no use thinking about it at all.
Therefore, I can only see as the end product, as I have repeatedly said
in these letters - and especially after attending the big world meetings
of IMF - the answer is a total collapse.
Either the countries
will have to go back to a system which will stabilize the money, such
as gold - or the social order, not only of the United States, but of
all the industrial world, will disintegrate, and from the enormous confusion
new governments will arise after much suffering and
p 8 -- bloodshed,
starvation and horror. Those governments would be dictatorships.
observed: "The world is unhappy. It is unhappy because it doesn't
know where it is going, and because it senses that if it knew, it would
discover that it was heading for disaster. ... The crisis the world
knows today will be a long one. It is not a passing difficulty. It is
actually the recognition of permanent change." (Ibid.,
March 11, 1975, pp. 1-2)
In the May 24, 1976 issue of his financial letter, Myers
again cites the year 1967 as the base year for the beginning of the
monetary perplexities which have gripped the nations since then. He
wrote - "An enormous war has been going on between the forces of
paper and the forces of gold since 1967 when SDR's were first proposed."
Then he lists a "score card" in the battle between gold and
the paper, Special Drawing Rights:
The IMF recommendation
of Special Drawing Rights in 1967.
The IMF official acceptance of SDR's, 1969, and the creation of 9.5
billion SDR's during 1970, 1971, and 1972.
(3) Nixon's break with gold, August, 1971, and the
end of the world monetary system devised at Bretton Woods.
(4) The IMF decision to sell 25 million ounces of
gold at 16 auctions over the next two years - thus depleting the international
money system of important gold reserves. (p. 1; see Exhibit #4)
In a letter dated, April 23, 1976, Myers noted - "Gold
is to money what DEITY is to religion. Without a deity the moral code
disappears. Without gold the morality of money disappears: Morality
because money loses its store of value, and the man who sweated and
worked has lost the fruits of his labor, and that is immoral."
In Newsweek (June 19, 1978, p. 21) in an article on the tax revolt,
the writer noted "Since 1967, the value of the dollar has declined
47.6 percent, and the average American working family is now barely
better off in real dollars than it was a decade ago." The connection
between the sign Jesus gave to mark the conclusion of the times of the
Gentiles or nations, and the beginning of the "distress of nations"
is inescapable. The fact that we are living in this very time should
cause us to do some very serious thinking.
The Word - "Until" -- Twenty
times in his Gospel and in the book of Acts, Luke uses the Greek word,
acriV, which is translated, "until."
However, in Luke 21:24, and in two places in Acts, the word is combined
with the relative, 'ou,
making it an idiomatic expression, achri
hou. To understand the force of this expression as far as,
Luke 21:24 is concerned, we need to take time to observe its use in
the book of Acts.
The first instance of its use in Acts is in Chapter
7. The verse in context reads: - But
when the time of promise drew nigh, which God had sworn to Abraham,
the people grew and multiplied in Egypt, till (achri hou) another
king arose, which knew not Joseph. The same dealt subtilly with our
kindred, and evil entreated our fathers, so that they cast out their
young children, to the end they might not live. In which time Moses
was born. (17-20a)
It should be observed that these verses indicate a
"time" when the promise "drew nigh" and the children
of Israel "grew and multiplied in Egypt, till a king arose"
who with his counselors initiated a genocide program. This program did
not begin immediately and it covered a period of time. In fact, Moses
was born in that "time." Here the idiom is used to indicate
a definable period of time by occurring events.
We find the same indication in the second use of the
idiom in Acts 27:33. Paul was on his way to Rome. Adverse weather conditions
had made the voyage extremely hazardous. To Paul it was revealed that
they would be "cast upon a certain island." All on board had
fasted for fourteen days, and when it appeared they were approaching
p 9 -- land, Paul advised that they should "take
some food." Luke writes that Paul gave this counsel to all on board
"while (achri hou) the day was coming on." From the
time the first faint light on the eastern horizon heralds the coming
dawn until the sun arises dispelling all darkness, the day is coming
on - a brief but definable period of time.
In 1967, the armies of Israel recaptured the Old City
of Jerusalem, yet the capitol remained at Tel Aviv. In 1980, the Knesset
declared a united Jerusalem the Capitol of all Israel. The period which
marked the closing of the times of the Gentiles can be clearly defined.
(See Appendix C)
The "Times" of the Gentiles - Not
only does Luke present the prophecy of Jesus concerning the fate of
Jerusalem in 70 A.D., in the discourse as given on the Mount of Olives;
but also in describing the Triumphal entry of Jesus into Jerusalem a
few days prior, he quotes Jesus saying concerning the city - "Thine
enemies shall cast a trench about thee, and compass thee around, and
keep thee in on every side, and shall lay thee even with the ground,
and thy children within thee: for they shall not leave in thee one stone
upon another; because thou knewest not the time (kairon)
of thy visitation." (Luke 19: 43-44) This picture is merely an
enlargement of what Luke quotes Jesus as saying on the Mount of Olives
- "And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies"
(21:20) making it a sign for His followers. In other words, when Jerusalem
was destroyed it had had its day of grace - its time of visitation.
It is in this setting then, that Luke reports the words
of Jesus stating that the Gentiles would also have allotted times (kairoi),
and that a certain event would mark the closing of those times. Even
as in the case of the Jewish nation, it does not mean that all Gentiles
will be converted even as all the Jews were not "converted"
to Jesus, the Messiah. The force of the concept is the same as stated
in Matthew - "This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all
the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the
end come." (24:14) The sign that will mark the time when the witness
has been preached "unto all nations (Gentiles)" has to do
with events connected with Jerusalem's history. In this case, it is
the time when the city is no longer under the control of the Gentiles.
There is a distinct parallel in the closing of the
time of the Jewish nation/church and the closing of the times of the
Gentiles. According to the prophecy given to Daniel, "seventy"
weeks of years were set aside for them. In the f inal week, Jesus came
with His last appeal to the chosen people. During His ministry, He cleansed
the Temple twice but was unable to change the course of the religious
leadership. The mid-point of that final week of years was marked by
the crucifixion of Jesus. It closed with the stoning of Stephen in 34
A.D. Yet time lingered for the individual Jew who worshiped in the synagogues
throughout the Roman Empire. There they had the opportunity to decide
whether they would accept the decision of their hierarchy concerning
Jesus' claim as the Messiah, or whether they would accept the Gospel
that Jesus of Nazareth was indeed the fulfillment of the promises given
to them under the covenant. Then followed the literal destruction of
Jerusalem, in whose fate, "we may behold the doom of a world that
has rejected God's mercy and trampled upon His law." (GC,
p. 36) Jesus gave us as a prophecy by which we may know when "the
time of visitation" is completed for the nations. Mercy still lingers
for the individual. But soon to follow is the "wrath" of God
poured out without mercy, We stand in time between these two events.
"Trodden Down" - The
word translated, "trodden down" is a present participle of
the Greek verb, pateo.
p 10 -- The force of the present tense in Greek
indicates that Jerusalem is to be continuously trodden down till
the times of the Gentiles be filled full. This has been true. In 70
A.D., Titus desolated the city, but in putting down the revolt of the
Jews in 132 A.D. led by Bar Kochba, Hadrian desolated it even more so.
The city was ploughed over after its recapture in 134 A.D. From that
day till 1967, only Gentile powers controlled Jerusalem.
The Greek verb, pateo
according to Thayer's Lexicon, means "to tread under foot,
trample on, i.e. treat with insult and contempt: to desecrate the holy
devastation and outrage." Arndt &Gingrich in their lexicon
(A Greek-English Lexicon
of the New Testament, p. 640) defines the verb thus: "tread,
trample of the
undisciplined swarming of a victorious army through a conquered city.
Its heedlessness, which acknowledges no limits, causes pateo
to take on the concepts 'mistreat, abuse."' These definitions describe
exactly what Jesus said would be the fate of the city in "the days
of vengeance, that all things that are written may be fulfilled."
(Luke 21:22) Continuously from the days of vengeance begun by Titus
Hadrian, Jerusalem has been under Gentile domination and would continue
so till the
times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.
Moulton & Milligan cite contemporary use of this
Greek root word in The Vocabulary of the Greek New Testament.
One source reads - "to tread (patesai)
the crops in the sand." The substantive use was noted in the clause
- "One who treads (patetes)
grapes with their feet." (p. 498)
From a detailed study of Luke 21:24-25, the conclusion
cannot be avoided that we have seen fulfilled before our very eyes a
prophecy of Jesus, even as our spiritual forefathers saw the fulfillment
of the other signs which Jesus gave - "And there shall be signs
in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars." (Luke 21:25) To
the significance of these signs, we shall devote the next chapter.
p 11 -- Chapter IV
Revelation of the Son of Man"
Signs in the Heavens -- Luke
quoted Jesus as saying - "There shall be signs in the sun, and
in the moon, and in the stars." (21:25) In discussing the sign
which would warn His followers of the destruction of Jerusalem, Jesus
called their attention to the book of Daniel, the prophet. (Matt. 24:15)
Also in the book of Daniel is revealed a judgment to precede Jesus'
"coming and the end of the world." (Matt. 24:3) Daniel was
shown the scenes in the heavens when "the judgment was set
and the books were opened." (Dan. 7:9-10) In another vision, the
hour when this judgment would commence was stated in prophetic time
- "Unto two thousand and three hundred days, then shall the sanctuary
be cleansed." (Dan. 8:14) This time period would reach to 1844.
Prior to the culmination of this prophetic period, the signs in the
heavens foretold by Jesus did occur.
On May 19, 1780, the sun was darkened and the moon did
not give its light. (Matt. 24:29) This extraordinary darkness began
about 10 a.m. in the morning and continued past midnight. Covering the
whole of the New England States, the reports of this sign which Jesus
gave are to be found in the records and historical journals of that
area. Observers near Boston reported that by 11:30 a.m., the darkness
had become so intense that "in a room with three windows, twenty-four
panes each, all open toward the southeast and south, large print could
not be read by persons with good eyes." (Boston Gazette and
Country Journal, May 29, 1780) This same report noted that "in
the time of the greatest darkness some of the dunghill fowls went to
their roost. Cocks crowed in answer to one another as they commonly
do at night. Woodcocks, which are night birds, whistled as they do only
in the dark. Frogs peeped. In short, there was the appearance of midnight
at noon day." (Emphasis theirs)
"The darkness the following evening was probably
as gross as ever has been observed since the Almighty fiat gave birth
to light," so wrote Dr. Samuel Tenney in a letter dated, Exeter,
NH, December, 1785. (Collections of the Massachusetts Historical
Society, Vol. 1, 1792) Tenney continued by saying: - I
could not help but conceiving at the time, that if every luminous body
in the universe had been shrouded in impenetrable shades, or struck
out of existence, the darkness could not have been more complete. A
sheet of white paper held within a few inches of the eyes was equally
invisible with the blackest velvet.
Fifty-three years after the Dark Day, the stars of heaven
fell (Matt. 24:29). The record reads: - On
the night of November 12-13, 1833, a tempest of falling stars broke
over the earth. North America bore the brunt of the pelting. From the
Gulf of Mexico to Halifax, until day light with some difficulty put
an end to the display, the sky was scored in every direction with shining
tracks and illuminated with majestic fireballs. (Agnes M. Clerke,
History of Astronomy in the Nineteenth Century, p. 328)
The significance of these events was noted by Ellen
G. White in the Spirit of Prophecy, Vol. IV, in the chapter before
her account of William Miller. She wrote: - While
unconscious of their condition and their peril, the church and the world
were rapidly approaching the most solemn and momentous period of
earth's history, - the period of the revelation
p 12 --
of the Son of man.
Already had the signs which Christ himself had promised, - the sun clothed
in darkness by day and the moon by night, - declared His coming soon.
(p. 195, emphasis mine)
The Period of the Revelation of the Son of Man - This
period of time - not a single event - is marked by three manifestations
of Jesus as the Son of man. At the time "the judgment was set,
and the books opened," Daniel also beheld, in his continuing night
vision, "one like the Son of man" coming "with the clouds
of heaven" to the Ancient of days. He was given "dominion,
and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should
serve Him." (Dan. 7:13-14) The Son of man, as High Priest after
the Order of Melchizedek, is involved in the judgment. (Heb. 9:27-28)
When on earth, He told the caviling Jews that "the Father judgeth
no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son." He also
told them why - "The Father ... hath given Him authority to execute
judgment also, because He is the Son of man." (John 5:22, 26-27)
Since all must appear "before the judgment seat
of Christ" in the record of their life's deeds (II Cor. 5:10),
it is assuring to know that One who has been touched with the "feelings
of our infirmities" will plead our case and execute the decision.
(Heb. 4:15) Wonderful is the promise given that he who heeds the words
of the Son of man, and believes on Him who had sent Him - the Ancient
of days - "shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from
death unto life." (John 5:24) This understanding of the revelation
of the Son of man helps us to relate better to the other two manifestations
of the Son of man.
Our hope of glory - when the kingdom received by the
Son of man from the Ancient of days is "given to the people of
the saints of the most High" (Dan. 7:27) - is dependent upon Christ
being formed within us; in other words, "Christ in you the hope
of glory." (Col. 1:27) All who "come unto God by Him,"
Jesus is able to save "to the uttermost ... seeing He ever liveth
to make intercession for them." (Heb. 7:25) This "uttermost"
revelation of God in man, as was manifest in the Son of man, results
from Christ's final atonement in the Most Holy place of the Heavenly
Sanctuary. Then "the earnest expectation" for which the whole
creation has been waiting will be realized in "the manifestation
of the sons of God." (Rom. 8:19)
Isaiah relates this manifestation of the sons of God
with the signs in the heavens. He wrote - "The stars of heaven
and the constellations thereof shall not give their light: the sun shall
be darkened in his going forth, and the moon shall not cause her light
to shine." (Isa. 13:10) Then the prophet pictures the time when
God will "shake the heavens, and the earth shall remove out of
her place, in the wrath of the Lord of hosts, in the day of His fierce
anger." (13:13) The final wrath of God is filled full in the Seven
Last Plagues which are poured out when the intercession of the Son of
man is completed. (Rev. 15:1, 8) However, between the signs in the heavens
and the final wrath of God, Isaiah pictures His objective - "I
will make a man more precious than fine gold; even a man than the golden
wedge of Ophir." (Isa. 13:12) This is also what Paul tells us is
to be at "the manifestation of the sons of God," for he wrote
- "For whom [God] did foreknow, He also did predestinate to be
conformed to the image of His Son." (Rom. 8:29)
With the fulfillment of His work as Son of man before
the Ancient of days, and the completion of His revelation in the 144,000
resultant from His final atonement, the long awaited "hope of the
ages" will transpire. The Son of man will come in the clouds of
heaven to reap the harvest of earth. Picturing this scene after describing
the messages of the Three Angels, John wrote: - And
I looked, and behold a white cloud, and upon the cloud sat one like
unto the Son of man, having on His head a golden crown, and in His hand
a sharp sickle. And another angel came out of the temple, crying with
a loud voice to Him that sat on the cloud, Thrust in Thy sickle, and
p 13 -- the
time is come for Thee to reap: for the harvest of the earth is ripe.
And He that sat on the cloud thrust in His sickle on the earth; and
the earth was reaped. (Rev. 14:14-16)
The "period of the revelation of the Son of man"
beginning in 1844 will continue through to His coming in the clouds
of heaven. He is manifest as the Son of man in His work as High Priest
in the Most Holy place of the Heavenly Sanctuary; He is revealed as
the Son of man in the lives of those in whom the final atonement is
accomplished; and He comes as the Son of man to take into His everlasting
kingdom those given to Him by the Ancient of days.
The Period in Diagram
of Probation ---------------------- 2nd
(1) Daniel 7:9-10, 13-14; John 5:22, 27
(2) Isaiah 13:10-13; Romans 8:19, 29-30; Colossians 1:27
(3) Revelation 14:14-16
NOTE: Jesus in giving the signs in the heavens
- the sun and moon darkened; the stars falling - was directing attention
to events that would transpire in heaven. The final activity of God
in the resolution of the sin problem was to begin. Where sin began,
the final atonement must be made. Jesus' other sign concerned an event
on earth by which men could know the distress of nations had begun.
The final scenes of the sin drama on earth would commence. Thus the
last two major signs Jesus gave His disciples on the slopes of Olivet
directed the attention of men first to the beginning of the final ministry
in Heaven, and then to events to occur on earth that man might know
the heavenly ministry was drawing to a close. TOP
p 14 -- Chapter V--
Generation Shall Not Pass Away"
Jesus outlined three major events which were to take
place between His resurrection and His second coming. These events were
to serve as signs to His followers at the given time of their fulfillment.
First, as has been noted, Jerusalem was to be surrounded by armies.
This would be the sign for the Christians to flee the city and its environs.
Then came the signs in the heavens - the sun darkened, the moon not
giving its light, and the stars falling from heaven. This marked the
beginning of the period of the revelation of the Son of man - first
in judgment, then His coming as King of kings. Finally Jerusalem was
to be freed from domination by the Gentiles, thus marking the close
of the times of the Gentiles, and the beginning of the distress of nations.
We have yet to look closely at what this means to us who are living
in the time when this prophecy has been fulfilled.
After completing the enumeration of these signs and
certain details concerning them, Jesus stated to His disciples: - Verily
I say unto you, This generation shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled.
Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away.
Each generation, in which these major events as prophesied
occurred, perceived itself as living in the end of time. This does't
exempt even the generation living prior to the destruction of Jerusalem.
The Early Church -- When
Paul wrote his first epistle to the church at Thessalonica, he described
the coming of Christ and the first resurrection. (I Thess. 4:16-19)
While they were to be comforted by the hope of the resurrection, they
were also warned to take heed that the day not overtake them "as
a thief." (5:4) These new converts became convinced that the second
coming of Christ would be in their day. Paul then had to write a second
letter telling them that certain things were first to take place before
the event. (II Thess. 2:3) Nevertheless, he noted that "the mystery
of iniquity doth already work." (2:7) The message comes through
- "Not just now, but not too far away."
In his prison epistle to the church at Colosse, Paul
told them, "not to be moved away from the hope of the gospel, which
ye have heard, and which was preached to every creature under heaven."
(1:23) That hope of the gospel included what Paul in his letter to Titus
called "that blessed hope, [even] the glorious appearing of the
great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ." (2:13) In describing the
extent of the proclamation - "to every creature which is under
heaven" - Paul is alluding in concept to the words of Jesus when
giving the signs of His return. Jesus said the gospel of the kingdom
would "be preached as a witness unto all nations; and then shall
the end come." (Matt. 24:14) Paul wrote this had been done. His
essay to the Hebrews begins with the concept that God "in these
last days" has spoken to us in a Son. (1:2) The early Christians
thought of themselves as living in the end times - and it was to be
the end time for the Jewish nation/church.
The fact dare not be overlooked that the Christians
who saw the event which Jesus
p 15 -- had prophesied for that generation -
Jerusalem surrounded by alien armies - lived to see the event to which
it was connected, fulfilled - the destruction of the city. The Roman
armies under Cestius surrounded the city in 66 A.D., and then suddenly
withdrew. In a little less than four years - 70 A.D. - the Roman legions
under Titus returned, captured and burned the city. Jesus' words did
not pass away; they were fulfilled!
A Diagram of This Period
The Cross -----------------------------------------------------
66 A.D.---------------- 70 A.D.
The Second Major Sign -- The
second major sign was to be seen in the heavens. These collective signs
in the sun, moon and stars occurred during the period of 1780-1833.
Following this period, there was a worldwide stir concerning the coming
of Christ. The followers of William Miller and finally Miller himself
proclaimed that Christ would come October 22, 1844. Joseph Wolff heralded
the message of Christ's soon return throughout the Near East. Other
voices were raised in England, and in Sweden, young children moved by
the Holy Spirit proclaimed the near return of Jesus.
Again the fact comes through - the generation who saw
the last sign in the heavens, and who heard the proclamation that they
were living in what was perceived to be the end times, also lived to
hear the message concerning the event to which the signs given by Jesus
directed mankind - His final ministry in the Heavenly Sanctuary, the
beginning of the period of the revelation of the Son of man.
A Diagram of This Period
May 19, 1780
-----------------------------Nov. 13, 1833
------------------------ Oct. 22, 1844
The Final Sign -- We come now to the final
major sign of His prophetic discourse, the sign which would signal that
the times of the Gentiles had been fulfilled. This has been fulfilled
in this generation before the eyes of the whole world. Thus this generation
which has seen the event which fulfilled the prophecy of Jesus will
not pass away till all is completed and Jesus returns the second time.
We have reached the end of time.
A Diagram of This Period
--1967 ------------ 1980 --------Dan.
11:45 --------- SECOND COMING
As we next turn our attention to the data
which surrounds and supports the prophecy of the closing times of the
Gentiles, we shall see that all prophecies concerning the end time are
moving to their final climax. Well would it be for us to carefully ponder
the words of Jesus as He brought His prophetic discourse to a close.
Take your Bibles and read prayerfully His words in Luke 21:34-36. TOP
p 16 -- Chapter VI
of History and 1967
In 1975, a section of The Reader's Digest was
devoted to articles on Jerusalem, and peace in the Middle East. One
of these was captioned - "Jerusalem -- Too Holy For Its Own Good."
The author, David Reed, wrote: - A
stone wall, rising starkly in the Walled City, figures strongly in Israel's
adamancy over not wanting to give up East Jerusalem. This is the Western
Wall, a fragment of the western rampart of the platform on which the
First Temple of King Solomon and the Second Temple of King Herod stood.
The Second Temple was destroyed by the Romans in A.D. 70, when the Jews
were driven into diaspora, or dispersion. Throughout 19 centuries of
diaspora, the wall or the memory of it, served as a spiritual beacon
and a symbol of a lost homeland to Jews the world over. During this
time, Passover and Yom Kippur services ended with the incantation in
Hebrew: "Next year in Jerusalem." ...
When the British
withdrew from Palestine in 1948, and Jews and the Arabs fought for the
control of the state, the Jews managed to hold West Jerusalem and proclaimed
it the capital of the new state of Israel. Yet, tantalizingly, the Western
Wall remained just beyond reach. Jordon annexed East Jerusalem as well
as the West Bank of the River Jordon, a territory that surrounds the
city on three sides. For 19 years, a no-man's-land separated the two
sectors, and the Jordanians refused to allow Jews to worship at the
When war came in
1967, Israel urged Jordan's King Hussein to stay out of it, promising,
in return, not to attack Jordon. But, egged on by Egypt's Gamal Abdel
Nasser and other Arabs, Hussein sent artillery shells crashing into
West Jerusalem. Israeli soldiers counterattacked, and poured into the
Walled City. Their religious fervor was such that many headed directly
for the Western Wall, where they paused to pray. For the first time
in 19 centuries. the wall was under Jewish control. (March, 1975,
This gives concisely the events and Jewish feeling connected
with the retaking of Old Jerusalem in 1967. It signalled the first step
in the fulfillment of the prophecy of Jesus, marking the beginning of
the closing of "the time of visitation" for the Gentiles,
or nations. Beyond this actual event which Jesus gave as the "sign"
when the times of the nations would begin to be fulfilled, a number
of other happenings in the religious world occurred which marks 1967
as a significant date.
One is the Catholic Charismatic Movement. "Catholic
Sociologist Andrew Greely estimates that two million Catholics have
attended charismatic meetings." (Christianity Today (CT),
June 6, 1975, p. 45) This same journal reports: - Pentecost
Sunday, 1975, will live in church history as the day when the charismatic
movement in the Catholic Church arrived in St. Peter's with full force.
During the pontifical mass presided over by Pope Paul VI on May 18,
the sound of tongues and charismatic singing filled the massive nave
of the ancient mother church of Roman Catholicism. ...
The conference which
in previous years had met at Notre Dame University, convened in Rome
in conjunction with the Holy Year proclaimed by Pope Paul. The theme
was the same as the Holy Year "Renewal and Reconciliation."
Participants came from over sixty nations representing more than one
million Catholic charismatics in several thousand prayer groups. Several
Protestant Pentecostal and charismatic leaders also attended as "official
were held on the outskirts of Rome in a large tent over the catacombs
of St. Callixtus, a meeting and burial place for early Christian martyrs.
On Pentecost Sunday,
the conference moved to St. Peter's for the mass celebrated by Pope
p 17 --
Although the charismatics
were a minority in the throngs who filled the church and the square
outside, their presence was apparent as the mass progressed. Spontaneous
singing of the charismatic anthem "Alleluia" competed with
the pipe organ at the beginning and the end of the service. At the consecration
of the host, a soft murmur of "singing in the Spirit" (chanting
in harmony in glossolalia) filled the cathedral. While the Pope continued
the mass, hands were raised in praise, and at one point, a priest fell
to his knees and asked to be baptized in the Holy Spirit. Several persons
laid hands on him and prayed quietly. ...
The climax of the
conference came at St. Peter's on Monday, May 19, in a mass conducted
by Cardinal Suenens, who was assisted by twelve bishops and more than
800 priests. This was the first specifically charismatic service ever
held in St. Peter's. Suenens delivered his sermon in typically Pentecostal
style. The cathedral reverberated with the shouted responses to his
"hallelujahs." Such Pentecostal choruses as "Spirit of
the Living God" and "Alleluia" were sung with hands upraised.
Several times the well-filled basilica resounded with singing in the
At the close of
the mass, Pope Paul arrived to give special greetings to the conferees.
As he entered, the congregation broke into cheers and applause. Most
of his message was given in French, with short summaries in Spanish
and English... At the end of his prepared text, the Pope broke into
impromptu remarks in his native Italian. Reflecting on his encyclical
on joy that was proclaimed the day before, he exhorted the charismatics
to share their joy with the world. The conference erupted in applause
as the Pope ended with, "Glory to the Lord, hallelujah!" Before
he exited, the Pope embraced and kissed Cardinal Suenens and greeted
about twenty leading charismatics. Many wept openly. ...
According to Catholic
theologian Kilian McDonnell of Minnesota. it was a "triumphant
day," while to Balthasar Fisher of Trier University, Germany, the
meeting was "historical - of enormous importance." To Protestant
Pentecostal spokesman David du Plessis, it was "the greatest charismatic
and ecumenical event in history."
summed up the feelings - and hopes - of many when he declared that by
his actions and warm words of approval, "the Pope opened his arms
and heart to the charismatic renewal." (Ibid., pp. 45-46)
However, the bottom line of this Catholic charismatic
breakthrough in 1975 was reported in CT, June 22, 1973: - On
the surface, the big story is still the movement's phenomenal growth.
From its beginning among a handful of mostly young persons at a retreat
in 1967 on Duquesne University campus in Pittsburgh, it now encircles
the earth. (p. 37)
When one perceives the charismatic movement as a manifestation
of the working of the power of Satan, the event at Duquesne University,
and the date - 1967 becomes significant. Here is an outward display
of demoniac power in angelic garb moving into the Catholic church, the
government of which, prophecy indicates will figure so largely in the
final scenes of this world's history. This is not saying that such power
has not resided in the Papacy since its inception as indicated in prophecy
(Rev. 13:2; II Thess. 2:9), but does serve as a sign heralding the time
for such manifestations in the devil's final movement to deceive the
world. (Rev. 16:13-14) 1
Turning to another event, we find that 1967 marked the
450th Anniversary of Protestantism. The World Book Encyclopedia
made this observation: - World
Protestantism celebrated its 450th anniversary in 1967 and encountered
some of its most troublesome issues in history. Most Protestants consider
October 31, 1517, as the symbolic beginning of the Reformation. On that
day, Martin Luther issued his Ninety-Five Theses criticizing the Roman
Catholic Church and pointing toward a fresh understanding of God's grace.
In October, 1967, Protestants gathered - quite often with Roman Catholics
- in countries throughout the world, to recall that event. (1968
Year Book, p. 468)
1 -- Revelation
pictures Satan under the symbol of a "dragon" or "serpent"
(Rev. 12:9; 20:2) In Rev. 16:13-14, the symbol changes to "like
frogs" - an animal which catches its prey with its tongue.
p 18 -- From the same encyclopedia under the
topic - "Eastern Influence" - an interesting summary was given
of the introduction of Eastern philosophy into Western thinking. The
summary stated: Finally,
news of non-Western religion came to the West in 1967 through the efforts
of individuals and groups that might be described as commuters between
value systems. The "hippie" phenomenon, which reached a peak
in midsummer, was an example. Hippies turned to Zen Buddhism, the Vedas,
the writings of Rabbi Hillel, and the teachings of Jesus, implying that
these could provide meaning for a non-violent generation. The Beatles
were the best known of the celebrities who turned to Eastern Religion
as they sought "transcendental meditation" through contact
with Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, their chosen spiritual leader. Timothy Leary
advocated a religion based not only on mind-expanding drugs like LSD,
but also on literary resources of Eastern religion. (Ibid.,
Through the prophet Isaiah, God spoke concerning "the
last days" in which a people professing His name would prefer a
"law" going forth from Jerusalem rather than accepting what
He had already proclaimed from Mt. Sinai. This people would be "replenished
from the east." (Isa. 2:2-6)
Another happening which marks 1967 is a mix between
religious elements and the toy industry. John Godwin in his Occult
America describes it thus: - The
year 1967 was a historic milestone for the United States toy industry.
In that year Americans ditched their longest -standing favorite among
board games, and elevated Ouija boards to its place. Since then approximately
ten million of these boards have been sold, making them a $50,000,000
business and assuring that a basic minimum of 20 million Americans have
played with them.
I picked out a fairly
random lot of thirty dedicated Ouija players and asked them if they
could tell me where the game originated and what the name meant. Most
of them, as it turned out, believed that it was a Far Eastern device,
its origins lost in antiquity, its title meaning something or other
in either Chinese, Hindi, or Korean. One lone individualist held out
for Hebrew, another had it on authority of her card-reading girlfriend
that Ouija meant "spirit" in either Sanskrit or Persian.
The fact is that
the Ouija board was invented and patented in 1892 by one William Fuld
of Baltimore, Maryland. At first he and his brother called the contraption
Mystifying Oracle, but found the label too long and hit on a combination
of the French and German word for "yes" as an alternative.
Until 1966 the boards were made exclusively by the Fuld family's Southern
Toy Company. Then Parker Brothers - who also manufacture Monopoly -
bought the rights. To their astonishment the new acquisition outsold
their No. 1 hit from the word go!
There was of course,
a certain amount of sales push behind it. Ads - "Give One to a
Friend" - in magazines, and a crescendo ditty, "Hey, Ouija,
we needja" blasted over various rock-orientated radio stations.
There was a war in Vietnam, confirming the pattern noted during both
World Wars and Korea that Ouija boards always sell better in wartime.
But the current dizzying surge is the result of a totally unexpected
market combination. The usual wives, mothers, and sweethearts of service
men were joined by millions of teenagers, right down to the thirteen-year-old
level, who had never previously shown much interest in these gadgets.
And while the involvement of servicemen's relatives had obvious reasons,
the sudden enthusiasm of the teeners remains a mystery - even to Parker
Brothers. (p. 272)
Even as the charismatic movement with its overtones
of Spiritism garbed in angelic light, signals the arrival of the final
manifestation of Satanic power to deceive, so also does the emergence
of the raw spiritistic Ouija board signal the same thing - the time
for the marvelous working of Satan. Both made a rebirth in the same
year that the sign Jesus gave, concerning the times of the Gentiles,
began to be fulfilled - 1967! TOP
p 19 -- Chapter
V11 -- Data
of History and 1980
The prophecy of Jesus recorded in Luke 21:24 indicates
that the ending of the times of the Gentiles or nations is a brief but
definable period of time. Luke used the idiom -
achri hou - translated by our word, "until." (See
p. 8) We have focused on events which marked the beginning of the brief
period in 1967; now we turn our attention to an event in 1980 which
marked the close of this period, and some other events which preceded
this date that are also interrelated in the overall picture of prophecy.
There was no way to tell in 1967 just how long this period of time would
be, since we are not dealing with a time prophecy which foretells in
advance how much time must elapse till the next event, such as the 1260
days or the 2300 days. This prophecy concerns events, and when the event
does occur, we can say - "This is it!"
In 1967 a man had a religious experience which had an
effect on the course of history in 1979. Jeffrey Hart in a syndicated
column dated May 7, 1976 (Oroville, California, Mercury Register),
writing on "Carter and Religion" stated: - '
" In 1967, ' says Carter, 'I had a profound religious experience
that changed my life."'
This obscure, mediocre Governor of Georgia had by 1979
been catapulted into the White House. There on October 6, 1979, President
Jimmy Carter welcomed Pope John Paul II with these words: - I
welcome you to the White House the symbolic home of all our people.
On behalf of every American of every faith I also welcome you into our
nation's heart. God bless you for coming to our country. We are proud
to have you here. - (RNS, Oct. 8, 1979, p. 1)
Here was a man, a Southern Baptist by confession, whose
religious devotion was such that he taught Sunday school while serving
as President of the United States, who in 1967 had such a "profound
religious experience" that his life was changed, who now twelve
years later as head of the American government reaches across the gulf
and clasps hands with the reigning head of the Papacy. (See Exhibit
#6) This was done on behalf of "every American of every faith."
Religious News Service (RNS) observes that the
reception for the Pope was possibly the largest ever held in the White
House. Over 10,000 invitations were issued. At this reception were gathered
representatives of all three branches of the American government - executive,
legislative, and judicial. "At the conclusion of the reception
the pope surprised the audience by saying, 'the pope wants to bless
you -- with the permission of the president of the United States."'
(Ibid., p.2) Carter made no objections, neither did any other
officially appointed or elected leader of government. Ellen White had
declared in 1891: - It
is at the time of national apostasy, when, acting on the policy of Satan,
the rulers of the land will rank themselves on the side of the man of
sin - it is then the measure of guilt is full; the national apostasy
is the signal for national ruin. (GC Bulletin, Vol. 4, #19,
You will observe that when "the rulers of the land"
- not just the president - rank themselves on "the side of the
man of sin," in accordance with "the policy of Satan,"
that God marks it as "national apostasy." Within weeks, American
prestige suffered the most humiliating defeat of its 200 year history
- the insult at Teheran - and
p 20 -- Carter could
do nothing to alter the situation; he was completely ineffective. The
blessing of the pope had turned into a curse.
Another series of events were taking place during the
final year of the Carter administration. These events involved Jerusalem.
As early as the second session of the United Nations (Nov. 29, 1947),
the General Assembly had approved a resolution on Palestine. This resolution
was re-affirmed in two following sessions (Dec. 11, 1948; Dec. 9, 1949).
On April 14, 1950, the Trusteeship Council approved a "special
statute" based on the General Assembly's decisions. This envisaged
a setting up of a "corpus separatum" for Jerusalem and the
surrounding area to be administered by the Council. This "territorial
internationalization" of Jerusalem was never put into effect due
to the 1948 conflict when Israel was reborn as a nation with the division
of the city, the Arabs retaining control of "old" Jerusalem.
1967 changed this picture; still the capital of Israel remained at Tel
On June 30, 1980, the Charge d'Affaires of the Permanent
Observer Mission of the Holy See asked that a Text of the Papal position
on Jerusalem as published in Osservatore Romano be circulated
as a document of the Security Council. This was duly done on the orders
of the President of Council as document S/14032. (See Exhibit #7) The
Papal position called for putting into effect the "special statute"
formulated by the Trustee Council in 1950.
Three months earlier, the Egyptian parliament called
for the establishment of Jerusalem as the seat of the Palestine autonomous
authority. The government of Israel considered this as a "flagrant,
unprovoked interference" in their internal affairs. The Israeli
parliament - the Knesset - responded by adopting a Private Member's
Bill - Basic Law: Jerusalem - on July 30, 1980. This law declared -
"Jerusalem united in its entirety is the capital of Israel."
It is to be "the seat of the President of the State, the Knesset,
the Government and the Supreme Court." (See Exhibit #8)
This action on the part of the Knesset set the limiting
date required by the idiomatic expression used in Luke 21:24. In 1967,
the Israeli armies reoccupied Jerusalem - the Jerusalem of which Jesus
spoke, the "old" city - and the end of the period of the times
of the Gentiles began. In 1980, the entire government of Israel was
transferred from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem declared by law as "united
in its entirety." This completed the fulfillment of the times of
the Gentiles or nations. If the prophecy of Jesus means anything, it
means at least, the nations of earth are no longer under the restraining
influence of the Holy Spirit, and Satan is now permitted to work his
will in gathering them together for the final confrontation at the place
called in the Hebrew tongue - Har-Magedon (Har
Mo'ed) - Mount of the Congregation. (Rev. 16:16 RV; Isa.
Since 1980, events have moved swiftly toward "the
battle of the great day of God Almighty." Carter was followed by
Ronald Reagan. During his administration, the United States officially
recognized the Vatican and exchanged ambassadors. This was done with
the aid and counsel of "the voice of Protestantism" - Billy
Graham. Church and State noted based on a report in the Chicago
Sun-Times "that evangelist Billy Graham helped to lay the political
groundwork for the U.S.-Holy See diplomatic exchange." The article
continued: - The
evangelist was asked by former National Security Advisor William Clark
[a Catholic] to assess the reaction of evangelicals to the diplomatic
adventure. Graham contacted such leaders as Jerry Falwell of the Moral
Majority, the Rev. Pat Robinson of the Christian Broadcasting Network,
the Rev. Billy Melvin of the National Association of Evangelicals, the
Rev. David Hubbard, president of Fuller Theological Seminary, and the
Rev. Gilbert Beers of Christianity Today.
In a seven-page
letter last spring, Graham advised that moderate evangelicals would
present few problems, especially if the Vatican were recognized purely
in a political way and without religious
p 21 --
predicted that Falwell would be in a difficult position because his
Moral Majority constituency reportedly includes both Catholics and conservative
Protestants. The evangelist noted, however, that "some people (like
Jerry Falwell) could be persuaded to keep quiet on the issue."
don't know what I personally would recommend that the president do,"
Graham wrote. He added that Reagan "would need to cover his political
bases" and bring into the picture "people who might cause
him trouble - Jews, Catholic Bishop's Committee, National Council (of
churches), etc." (March, 1984, p. 7)
It should be observed Graham suggested the plan be
put as a "political" recognition of Vatican State rather than
a "religious" recognition of the Holy See. This was to suggest
a deception to accomplish a desired end. Less than 110 acres of land
is hardly justification for diplomatic recognition by the United States.
It was the Papacy which the United States recognized! Both the legislative
and executive branches of the government affirmed the action.
The way in which this issue was put through Congress
- the almost total and callous disregard for the opposition by both
the legislative and executive branches of the United States government
- should tell us something. No longer are the "angels" holding
"the four winds" as was done in every previous confrontation.
The times of the nations are fulfilled.
The Papacy has again expressed its policy toward Jerusalem.
On Good Friday, April 20, 1984, Pope John Paul II issued an Apostolic
Letter called, "Redemptionis Anno." In this letter, he stated
- "Jerusalem stands
out as a symbol of coming together, or union, and of universal peace
for the human family." He called for peace as the fruit
of redemption, and because of this peace, it - makes
Jerusalem the living sign of the great ideal of unity, of brotherhood
and of agreements among peoples according to the illuminating words
of the Book of Isaiah: "Many peoples shall come and say: Come let
us go up to the house of the God of Jacob; that he may teach us his
ways and that we may walk in his paths." (Is. 2:3) (See Exhibit
There remains but one more prophetic sign involving
Jerusalem before the end. It reads: And
he shall plant the tabernacles of his palace between the seas in the
glorious holy mountain (Jerusalem, Dan. 9:16); yet he shall come to
his end and none shall help him. (Daniel 11:45)
Papal policy indicates that this is its objective and
desire. The Word of God indicates that when this happens, the next major
event is the close of all human probation: "And
at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth
for the children of thy people." (Daniel 12:1)
We have arrived at the end. This generation shall not
pass away till all things are fulfilled. TOP
p 22 -- Chapter VIII
A.D. 66 --
Suppose you were living in Jerusalem
in 66 A.D. You were a Christian. As a tradesman you were providing a
modest but adequate living for your family. You were aware of the prophecy
Jesus had given concerning the coming destruction of Jerusalem, having
heard it from the lips of the Apostles. Furthermore, it was also a matter
of record in the Gospels already written, and you had heard it read
frequently in the Christian assembly. But no Roman or alien armies had
as yet surrounded the city. There were rumors, but Jesus had not said
to rely upon rumors.
Then one morning you awakened to the fact that Roman
armies had surrounded the city, and all the gates were closed and carefully
guarded. How were you to leave the city? It appeared there was no way
out. What did Jesus mean? Had you waited too long? No, suddenly the
Roman armies withdrew for no apparent cause. The Jewish forces pursued,
and the gates were once again open. What would you have done? What should
you have done?
Believing the words of Jesus, you hurriedly leave the
city taking what you and your family can carry with you. It was a complete
uprooting of your life, and meant leaving behind many a cherished possession.
You did not stop till you were safely across the Jordon River, and located
in a small village in the region beyond. There you sought to establish
a form of existence. It was most difficult; life was hard. As time went
by, news reached you that the armies of the Romans had not returned.
Things were not exactly normal, but from the reports, those in the city
were faring far better than you were across the Jordon. What would you
have been tempted to do? What should you have done? You chose to stay,
and continued to struggle to make ends meet.
A.D. 70 came. The Roman armies returned. You received
news of the terrible slaughter and devastation which resulted when the
city was taken. You were glad, though life was far from easy, that you
had believed and obeyed the words of Jesus. Your very life - salvation
- depended upon your faith in what Jesus had said.
A.D. 1832 -- Suppose you
were living in a small New England town in the year 1832. One day during
the week as you were reading the notices on the bulletin board in the
village square, you read the announcement that one William Miller was
going to lecture the coming Sunday night in the Town Hall on the soon
return of Jesus. The next Sunday morning found you sitting in your usual
place at church as your pastor introduced his sermon with the announcement
you had read. He then proceeded to decry the fanaticism of thinking
that Jesus was going to return to earth in just a few years. He ridiculed
the prophecies as mere dreams with only an allegorical meaning. You
had planned to go that night to hear Mr.Miller. But the pastor had some
things to say about him, too. So you decided not to go, and you didn't.
The next year - one morning, well before daybreak -
you were suddenly awakened with the sound of cries and the terrified
voices of your neighbors. Looking out to see what was causing this unusual
disturbance, you saw what they saw - the stars of heaven failing. You
began to tremble, because you knew what Jesus had said, and what was
p 23 -- written in the book of Revelation which
was being so vividly fulfilled before your eyes. What were you to do?
You recall distinctly your decision of the previous year with deep regret.
Weeks pass, and again as you one day read the bulletin
board in the village square, you discover that William Miller will speak
in a near-by church the next Sunday night. Regardless of what your pastor
will say on Sunday morning, you are determined to go and hear Miller.
So you do, and you are completely convinced that the presentation of
prophecy is accurate. The end of all things is at hand, and so you start
attending the study group organized to prepare folk for the coming of
Jesus, and to provide support that others may hear also.
October 23, 1844 -- Since
you believed expectantly that Jesus was going to return on October 22,
1844, you gathered with those of like precious faith, uniting with them
in prayer and watching all that day. Into the hours of the night you
waited; but still Jesus did not come. The little sleep you got the rest
of the night was fitful, and with the dawning on October 23, you could
not rest. Your mind was agitated; your heart was torn with disappointment.
What should you do? What could you do? Where in the word of God could
you turn for an answer?
The Midnight Cry which had established the date, October
22 - "the tenth day of the seventh month" - had also opened
minds to further and deeper study of the type and antitype relationship
between the earthly and heavenly sanctuary. One who lived through this
experience wrote: - The
subject of the sanctuary was the key which unlocked the mystery of the
disappointment, showing that God had led His people in the great Advent
movement. It opened to view a complete system of truth, connected and
harmonious, and revealed present duty as it brought to light the position
and work of God's people. (SP, IV, p. 268)
Note that the study of the sanctuary brought "to
view a complete system of truth" and "revealed present duty."
What was that duty? Again from the pen of one who had
lived through those trying days following the disappointment, we read:
passing of time in 1844, was followed by a period of great trial to
those who still held the Advent faith. Their only relief, so far as
ascertaining their true position was concerned, was the light which
directed their minds to the sanctuary above. As has been stated, Adventists
were for a short time united in the belief that the door of mercy was
shut. This position was soon abandoned. Some renounced their faith in
their former reckoning of the prophetic periods, and ascribed to human
or Satanic agencies the powerful influence of the Holy Spirit which
had attended the Advent movement. Another class firmly held that the
Lord had led them in their past experience; and as they waited and watched
and prayed to know the will of God, they saw that their great High Priest
had entered upon another work of ministration, and following Him by
faith, they were led to understand also the closing work of the
church, and were prepared to receive and give to the world the warning
of the third angel of Revelation 14. (Ibid., pp. 271-272;
Observe - those who followed Jesus by faith were led
to understand "the closing work of the church." They
also perceived the Third Angel's message was to be given to the world.
As Time Continued -- Although
disappointed, being sincere and believing the Word of God, you chose
to unite your interests and endeavors with those who would be proclaiming
to the world the Message of Revelation 14. You looked for the time when
the message would
p 24 -- swell into a "loud cry" as
foretold in Revelation 18. You rejoiced to hear the messages of Elders
A. T. Jones and E. J. Waggoner when they came to South Lancaster to
give what they had presented at the Minneapolis General Conference session
in 1888. Then one day, a few years later, you opened the Review and
Herald which had just come in the mail. In it you read: - The
time of test is just upon us, for the loud cry of the third angel has
already begun in the revelation of the righteousness of Christ, the
sin-pardoning Redeemer. This is the beginning of the light of the angel
whose glory shall fill the whole earth. (Nov. 22, 1892, p. 615)
This caused you to rejoice. The "Loud Cry"
had commenced. Revelation 18 was about to be fulfilled. Soon Jesus would
come. You recalled the experience which filled your soul on October
22, 1844. Surely you would not again be disappointed. But then time
dragged on. Nothing happened. The revival that had been so evident at
the South Lancaster meetings died out. What had happened? You were getting
older, and hoped, so much, to be alive and see Jesus come. Many of your
friends who had shared this same hope had already fallen asleep in Jesus.
Must this be your experience, also?
Ten more years pass, and you hear about a letter which
Ellen G. White had written to Percy T. Magan. It had said: - We
may have to remain here in this world many more years because of insubordination,
as did the children of Israel, but for Christ's sake, His people should
not add sin to sin by charging God with the consequence of their own
wrong course of action. (Letter dated, Dec. 7, 1901)
As the full impact of this letter comes home to your
mind, you ask - "How many is "many more years'?" The
same day a friend of yours visits, and you both discuss things dear
to your hearts - the coming of Jesus, the advancing years of your life,
your hopes and expectations. This friend tells you about another letter,
also written in 1901. You want to see a copy. In a few days, your friend
returns and brings you a copy. You take it, and read it very slowly
and carefully. It tells you - In
the twenty-first chapter of Luke, Christ foretold what was to come upon
Jerusalem, and with it He connected the scenes which were to take place
in the history of this world just prior to the coming of the Son of
man in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. (Letter 20,
1901; Counsels to Writers and Editors, pp. 23-24)
That evening when you had time to think it through more
carefully, you ask yourself the question - "Why did Ellen White
just ask us to note Luke 21? Why not Matthew 24 and Mark 13? These were
also reports of what Jesus gave in prophecy that night long ago. Why
did she specify that what Luke had recorded about events to come upon
Jerusalem would be 'connected [with] the scenes which were to take place...
just prior to the coming of the Son of man in the clouds of heaven with
power and great glory'?" Then you took your Bible and re-read thoughtfully
Matthew 24, Mark 13, and Luke 2 1. You discovered that the only things
that Luke said about Jerusalem which Matthew and Mark did not was in
regard to Jerusalem being trodden down of the Gentiles until the times
of the Gentiles be fulfilled.
As the evening hours lengthened into the dark shadows
of the night, you continued that year in the early 1900's to ponder
what you had read. Jerusalem was still under Gentile control. But you
did recall reading in the newspaper of the first Jewish International
Congress in 1897 for the purpose of promoting a Jewish Commonwealth
in Palestine. Would this Jewish state - if it could be achieved - free
Jerusalem from Gentile control? Thinking, wondering, pondering - would
it be in your day? - you fell asleep. TOP
p 25 -- Chapter
IX -- Some
The 20th Century dawned with the Seventh-day Adventist
Church in crisis. The message of 1888 which was to prepare a people
for the finishing of the work and the coming of the Lord had received
only lip service at best. The professed people of God still clung to
their "works" hoping for acceptance with God. In 1901 December
to be exact - the messenger of the Lord wrote to Dr. P. T. Magan - "We
may have to remain here in this world many more years because of insubordination."
Earlier that year, the General Conference had convened in Battle Creek.
As soon as this conference was officially opened, Ellen G. White came
forward and asked some very penetrating questions: - Are
you under the control of God? Do you see your responsibility to Him?
If you do realize this responsibility, you will realize that you are
to mold and fashion minds after the divine similitude; and then those
in the different institutions here, who are being trained and educated
to become workers, will work for God, to hold up the standard of righteousness.
0 my soul is drawn
out in these things! Men who have not learned to submit themselves to
the control and discipline of God, are not competent to train the youth,
to deal with human minds. It is just as much an impossibility for them
to do this as it would be for them to make a world. That these men should
stand in a sacred place, to be the voice of God to the people, as we
once believed the General Conference to be, -- that is past. What we
want now is a reorganization. We want to begin at the foundation, and
build upon a different principle. (1901 , GC Bulletin, No.
1, p. 25)
At the closing meeting of this 1901 session, Ellen G.
White again spoke. She said: - Who
do you suppose has been amongst us since this Conference opened? Who
has kept away the objectionable features that generally appear in such
a meeting? Who has walked up and down the aisles of this Tabernacle?
-- the God of heaven and His angels. And they did not come here to tear
you to pieces, but to give you right and peaceable minds. They have
been among us to work the works of God, to keep back the powers of darkness,
that the work God designed should be done and should not be hindered.
The angels of God have been working among us. (Ibid., p. 463)
The Constitution adopted under Divine Guidance was unique.
No provision was made for a General Conference President. In its place
was a committee of twenty-five with power to organize itself. While
the report given to the delegates in 1901 setting forth the organization
of the Committee indicated A. G. Daniells as "Permanent Chairman"
(Ibid., #17, p. 377), the concept was understood that the committee
would reorganize itself each year. W. C. White during a floor discussion
of this new Constitution indicated a sentiment prevailed that "no
one should be chairman of this committee for a period of more than twelve
months at a time." (Ibid., #9, p. 206) Daniells, at a minority
meeting of the Committee on February 14, 1902, said "that in harmony
with the plan adopted at the late General Conference, the General Conference
Committee should organize itself from year to year." With only
six of the twenty-five members present, and a few observers, it did
reorganize itself, with Daniells remaining as chairman.
On the surface, it would appear that the type of organization
as envisioned in the 1901 Constitution would give the Church an inadequate
and ineffectual leadership; however, if the organization under the Constitution
had been permitted to continue, it would have produced a group
of men leading the Church governed by its Unseen Head. During two short
years the human element prevailed, and what might have
been was not attained. (8T:104-106) In 1903,
at Oakland, California, the General
p 26 -- Conference was again reorganized under
a Constitution which provided for a visible head in the office of President
of the General Conference. Responding to the "Majority Report"
of the Committee on Plans and Constitution, Dr. P. T. Magan - the one
to whom Ellen G. White had written in December, 1901, and who as an
observer had attended the minority meeting of the General Conference
Committee in 1902 held in Daniells office - declared: - It
may be stated there is nothing in this new constitution which is not
abundantly safeguarded by the provisions of it; but I want to say to
you that any man who has ever read Neander's History of the Christian
Church, Mosheim's or any other of the great church historians, -
any man who has ever read these histories can come to no other conclusion
but that the principles which are to be brought in, are the same principles,
and introduced in precisely the same way, as they were hundreds of years
ago when the Papacy was made.(1903, GC Bulletin, #10, p. 150)
Ellen G. White was quick to respond to this new situation.
Within twelve days of this discussion, she wrote from St. Helena, California,
the following: - In
the balances of the sanctuary the Seventh-day Adventist church is to
be weighed. She will be judged by the privileges and advantages that
she has had. If her spiritual experience does not correspond to the
advantages that Christ, at infinite cost. has bestowed on her, if the
blessings conferred have not qualified her to do the work entrusted
to her, on her will be pronounced the sentence, "Found wanting."
By the light bestowed, the opportunities given, will she be judged.
Before closing this testimony, Ellen G. White gave a
solution. She counseled: "Unless the church, which is now 
being leavened with her own backsliding, shall repent and be converted,
she will eat the fruit of her own doing, until she shall abhor herself."
(p. 250) This was not an ordinary call to repentance. It was a call
to denominational repentance. The "church" was to repent.
As a corporate body she faced the judgment of the sanctuary, and unless
the church repented, the sentence would be pronounced - "Found
Here is a prophecy that dare not be overlooked. In unmistakable
language, it is declared that "the Seventh-day Adventist church
is to be weighed" in the balances of the Heavenly Sanctuary. This
was stated as future in 1903 - "is to be" and "on her
will be pronounced." The greatest question facing the individual
member of the Church today is simply - "Has this prophecy been
fulfilled?" And, if it has, what decision was rendered? God is
on record that He will not do anything, but He will reveal it by prophet
and prophecy. (Amos 3:7) This is no minor decision which would be rendered,
for should the decision be negative, that pronouncement would declare
that the organizational vehicle He chose to use for the completion of
His final movement on earth had betrayed its sacred trust. If so judged,
as a corporate entity it would be "Found wanting." Continued
involvement in such a corporate structure would have eternal consequences.
Such is the gravity of this prophetic testimony written in 1903.
After 1903, time continued. In the newspapers, one could
read of wars and rumors of wars, earthquakes in divers places, famines
and pestilences. But no major event could be assigned to a specific
prophecy. It seemed that the prophetic clock of God had been stopped.
Then came 1929. In an agreement reached between Italy and the Vatican,
the "deadly wound" began its healing process, a modern rejuvenated
Papacy was born, not only politically, but also financially. As a Church,
Seventh-day Adventists believed in the guidance afforded by prophecy.
In her Statements of Belief, the Church was on record as affirming:
prophecy is a part of God's revelation to man; that it is included in
that Scripture which is profitable for instruction (2 Tim. 3:16); that
it is designed for us and our children (Deut. 29:29); that so far from
being enshrouded in impenetrable mystery, it is that which especially
constitutes the word of God as a lamp to our feet and a light to our
path. (Ps. 119:105; 2 Peter 1:19); that a blessing is pronounced upon
those who study it (Rev. 1 :1-3); and that, consequently, it is to be
p 27 -- understood
by the people of God sufficiently to show them their position in the
world's history and the special duties required at their hands. (1914
Yearbook, p. 293)
The last sentence of this confession of faith by our
spiritual forefathers is worthy of thoughtful consideration. Prophecy
"is to be understood by the people of God sufficiently to show
them their position in the world's history and the special duties required
at their hands." But in 1931, a new Statement of Beliefs appeared
in the Yearbook. This statement on prophecy was omitted! At the
very moment when God's prophetic time clock began ticking off the final
hours of human history, we chose to delete this statement from our beliefs.
In 1948, the State of Israel was formed. True, no prophetic
significance can be attached to this event, per se, but coming events
were casting their shadows before. This fact was recognized at the 1952
Bible Conference. (See p. 1) But something else was happening in the
Church. As human history was setting the stage for coming events, God
was not leaving Himself without a witness to the Church. To the newly
formed 1950 General Conference Committee, two young men, missionaries
to Africa, addressed the issue of the penetration of Baal worship into
the Church, and echoed God's call for denominational repentance. In
their original monumental manuscript - 1888 Re-Examined - they
wrote: - It
is now abundantly evident that "we" have traveled the road
of disillusionment since the Minneapolis meeting in 1888. Infatuation
with false teachings has taken the place of clear, cogent, heaven-inspired
truth, as regards "righteousness by faith." By the hard, humiliating
way of actual experience with counterfeit, Israel has brought herself
to the time when she is ripe for disillusionment. The simple faith to
believe, which was spurned at Minneapolis, is now replaceable with the
bitter tears of humble repentance, occasioned by our history. The following
prophecy has been fulfilled, and awaits only its realization by the
Unless the church,
which is now being leavened with her own backsliding, shall repent and
be converted, she will eat the fruit of her own doing, until she shall
abhor herself. (ST:250)
Such an experience
will be a repentance very similar to that of Mary Magdalene, whose faith
and love were spoken of by the Saviour as that of the model Christian.
The genuine repentance of heart-broken love is righteousness by faith.
(p. 242, old edition)
It must be observed that while Elders Wieland and Short
applied the call to repentance given in 1903 to the rejection of the
1888 message instead of to the action of the 1903 General Conference
replacing the God-directed 1901 Constitution, nevertheless the call
for a "denominational repentance" was made to the Church's
leadership in 1950. However, by calling attention to the "message"
of 1888, these men presented to the leadership of the Church its only
remedy. Thus God used these two young missionaries to tell the Church's
leadership that the hour was approaching when the Church was to be weighed
in the balances of the sanctuary. The warning and the call were all
a part of the same testimony which God sent through Ellen G. White in
1903. (See 8T:247-251)
The need for corporate repentance cannot be divorced
from the reason for that need. The Church was to be weighed in the balances
of the sanctuary, and if she did not meet certain criteria, she would
be found wanting. It was just that simple.
The answer to the challenge of Wieland and Short was
not long in coming. In 1952, Elder W. H. Branson, who in 1950 had been
elected to the high office of the presidency of the General Conference,
called for a Bible Conference. Its motivation was two-fold: 1) To
proclaim the message of 1888, and thus in an indirect way circumvent
the call sent through Wieland and Short two years previously; and 2)
Reaffirm the fundamental truth believed by the Church. Branson, himself,
presented the studies on Righteousness by Faith. Concluding these studies,
he said: - To
a large degree the church failed to build on the foundation laid at
the 1888 General Conference.
p 28 -- Much
has been lost as a result. We are years behind where we should be in
spiritual growth. Long ere this we should have been in the Promised
But the message
of righteousness by faith given in the 1888 Conference has been repeated
here. Practically every speaker from the first day onward has laid stress
upon this all-important doctrine, and there was no prearranged plan
that he should do so. It was spontaneous on the part of the speakers.
No doubt they were impelled by the Spirit of God to do so. Truly this
one subject has, in this conference "swallowed up every other."
And this great truth
has been given here in this 1952 Bible Conference with far greater power
than it was given in the 1888 Conference because those who have spoken
here have had the advantage of much added light shining forth from hundreds
of pronouncements on this subject in the writings of the Spirit of Prophecy
which those who spoke back there did not have. The light of justification
and righteousness by faith shines upon us more clearly than it ever
shone before upon any people.
No longer will the
question be, "What was the attitude of our workers and people toward
the message of righteousness by faith that was given in 1888? What did
they do about it?" From now on the great question must be, "What
did we do with the light on righteousness by faith as proclaimed in
the 1952 Bible Conference?" (Our Firm Foundation, Vol. II, pp.
Branson in outlining his objectives for the Bible Conference
indicated it was being called "for the particular purpose of reaffirming
those great and fundamental truths that have most certainly been believed
amongst us throughout all our history." (Ibid., Vol. 1,
p. 45) As one reads the messages given at the 1952 Bible Conference
on the subjects of the atonement, and the mediatorial work of Christ
in the Most Holy Place of the Heavenly Sanctuary, it must be happily
admitted, the presentations did reflect historic Adventist beliefs.
Those beliefs were reaffirmed.
Nevertheless, Wieland and Short's prophetic insight
into the real condition of the Church - that she was "infatuated
with false teachings" and "ripe for disillusionment"
was not long in surfacing. Within three years, under another administration,
the conferences between Seventh-day Adventists and the Evangelicals
- Barnhouse and Martin - took place. (See Appendix C) The very doctrines
confirmed at the 1952 Bible Conference were now denied by the Adventist
conferees. The resulting book - Questions on Doctrine - sought
to assure the Evangelicals that there was a change in the position of
the Adventist leadership on the doctrine of the Atonement, but at the
same time to verbalize this apostasy in such a way so as to camouflage
this change as not to be perceived by the rank and file of the laity
of the Church. To questions raised the answer was simply - "It
is just a matter of semantics." The Adventist conferees were themselves
deluded by this answer. T. E. Unruh, who chaired the conferences, reported:
came to see that many misunderstandings rested on semantic grounds,
because of our use of an inbred denominational vocabulary. Our friends
[the Evangelicals] helped us to express our beliefs in terms more easily
understood by theologians of other communions. (Adventist Heritage,
Vol. 4, #2, 1977, p. 40)
Again the Lord did not leave Himself without a witness.
M. L. Andreasen, the Adventist Church's greatest 20th Century theologian,
protested. In a letter, responding to a report he had recanted in his
opposition to the apostasy, he wrote: - Let
me assure you that I am in good health - not a mental case, not senile,
not even dead, as has been reported. But I am so busy that I cannot
keep up with my correspondence. I am all alone in my work.
No, I have not recanted.
The denomination is departing from the fundamentals, and I must protest.
(Letter. posted June 8, 1959, Glendale, California)
And protest he did through Letters to the Church!
Others joined in the challenge to the book - Questions
on Doctrine. The local elder
p 29 -- of the Baker, Oregon,
Seventh-day Adventist Church, A. L. Hudson, brought into the open the
long suppressed manuscript of Elders Wieland and Short, the original,
1888 Re-Examined. Hudson's pressure on the leadership of the
Church caused a "Further Appraisal of the Manuscript '1888 Re-Examined"'
to be released by the General Conference in 1958. This Appraisal addressed
the issue squarely but tragically. The General Conference leadership
rejected the only solution given by the messenger of the Lord
to the Church in 1903. They wrote confirming the 1951 evaluation: -
solution proposed, of the denomination making confession of the mistakes
of men made in the 1880's and 1890's and of a denominational repentance,
is not possible nor would an attempt to do so be of value. The experience
of the church is the collective experience of its members and leaders,
and thus rightness with God is a matter of present day personal relationships."
(A Warning and Its Reception, 2nd Printing. Green Tint Section,
In this answer, the leadership of the Church ignored
not only the specific counsel of the Lord as given in 1903, but also
the plain teaching of Scripture on corporate accountability. One illustration
of corporate accountability in the Old Testament is the sin of Achan
and how it involved all of Israel. In the New Testament, Peter filled
with the Spirit on the Day of Pentecost charged the whole of the "house
of Israel" with the murder of Jesus. (Acts 2:36)
While the book - Questions on Doctrine - was
not republished after the first edition, its apostate teachings were
confirmed in the book - Movement of Destiny - which in its first
edition carried the imprimatur and nihil obstat of the Presidents of
the General Conference and the North American Division, respectively.
The then president of the North American Division is now president of
the General Conference.
Then came 1967. The recapture of Jerusalem by the Israeli
forces marked the beginning of "the last week" - figuratively
speaking - of the times of the Gentiles as foretold by Christ that night
long ago on the Mount of Olives. TOP
p 30 -- Chapter X
Church - 1967-1980
In permitting the final sign given by Jesus to be fulfilled,
God was seeking to tell the Church something, even as God used John
the Baptist to seek to tell the Jewish Church something in that day
-- there was only a brief period of time left in which to bring forth
"fruits meet for repentance." (Matt. 3:8) It dare not be overlooked
that the "trust" committed to the Church - the Three Angels'
Messages of Revelation 14 (See 9T:19) - was a message to every
"nation" as well as to individuals. With the "times of
the nations" about to be fulfilled, the Church faced a crisis of
the greatest magnitude -- either the work had to be finished; was finished;
or else the Church had failed in its trust before God. Further, if the
Church has altered the basic beliefs of the Three Angels' Messages,
how could they in reality profess before God that they were still able
to carry to completion that which had been committed to their trust?
This is not a theoretical question, and the answer is written with indelible
ink on the pages of history.
During the second session of Vatican II, a Seventh-day
Adventist "representative" and a staff member of the World
Council of Churches concluded that informal talks between a group of
Seventh-day Adventists and an equal number of representatives of the
WCC would "fulfill a useful purpose." The first informal meeting
was held in 1965. This was followed by formalized meetings with the
"blessing," authorization and funding by the employing bodies
of the Adventist participants. (So Much in Common, p. 98) The
results of these meetings were quick in coming.
The January, 1967, issue of the official paper of the
WCC - Ecumenical Review - carried an article on "The Seventh-day
Adventist Church." Our official organ - Review & Herald
- responded through its associate editor, Raymond F. Cottrell, in three
editorials (March 23, 30, & April 6, 1967) In the last editorial,
Cottrell concluded: - It
is no small measure of regret that SDA's do not find it possible, as
an organization, to be more closely associated with others who profess
the name of Christ. On the other hand, if the Secretariat on Faith and
Order, for instance, were to invite SDA's to appoint someone competent
in that area to meet with their group from time to time and represent
the SDA point of view, we could accept such an invitation with a clear
conscience. Perhaps the same might be done in other areas of Christian
concern. On such a basis we would concur with Dr. Hanspicker that the
WCC is "one more place" where SDA's might bear their distinctive
"witness to the full truth of the Gospel." (p. 13f)
The invitation was not long in coming. The Central
Committee of the WCC appointed Dr. Earle Hilgert, vice-president for
Academic Administration of Andrews University as a member of the 120
member Commission on Faith and Order. (See Exhibit #10) The leadership
of the Church endorsed this selection. Events moved so rapidly in 1967
that Dr. Hilgert was able to attend the triennial meeting of the Faith
and Order Commission held in Bristol, England, July 30 to August 8,
1967, as the first Seventhday Adventist to serve on such a Commission.
Dr. Hilgert has since become an ordained Presbyterian minister and i-s
serving on the staff of McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago, Illinois.
His replacement on the Faith and Order Commission was Dr. Raoul Dederen,
also of Andrews University.]
The hierarchy of the Seventh-day Adventist Church loudly
proclaims to the laity that the Church is not a member of the
World Council of Churches. This is true, but the
p 31 -- request and subsequent appointment of
a Seventh-day Adventist theologian to the Faith and Order Commission
have far greater implications than appears on the surface. Cottrell
sought to cover his suggestion as "an opportunity to witness."
This naive stance betrays either ignorance of, or a purposeful cover
up of the real objectives of the Faith and Order Commission. It must
be clearly understood that the World Council of Churches is "a
fellowship of churches which confess the Lord Jesus Christ as God and
Saviour according to the Scriptures and therefore seek to fulfill together
their common calling to the glory of the one God, Father, Son and Holy
Spirit." (WCC Constitution) The WCC does not perceive itself
as "a universal authority controlling what Christians should believe
and do." However, they are striving as a "community"
to "realize the goal of visible Church unity." To assist this
"community" - Towards
this goal, the Faith and Order Commission of the World Council provides
theological support for the efforts the churches are making towards
unity. Indeed the Commission has been charged by the Council
members to keep always before them their accepted obligation to
work towards manifesting more visibly God's gift of Church unity. So
it is that the stated aim of the Commission is "to proclaim the
oneness of the Church of Jesus Christ and to call the churches to the
goal of visible unity in one faith and one eucharistic fellowship,
expressed in common worship and common life in Christ, in order that
the world might believe." (By-Laws) [Baptism, Eucharist and
Ministry, pp. vii & viii; Faith and Order Paper No. 11, Emphasis
This is what the leadership of the Church through its
official organ asked to become a part of in 1967. Then we forwarded
this whole process toward "Church unity" by placing in the
Statement of Beliefs voted at Dallas, Texas, in 1980, the full Constitutional
statement of the WCC which is required for membership in that organization.
The Fall Out -- "Since
1968 the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists has been actively
represented at the annual meeting of 'Secretaries of World Confessional
Families'. This participation is largely the result of WCC/SDA Conversations
and contacts made at the time of the Uppsala Assembly [of the WCC]."
(So Much in Common, p. 100) This association led to the separate
audience granted by Pope Paul VI to the "participants of the Conference
of Secretaries of the World Confessional Families." (RNS,
May 19, 1977, p. 19) The Secretary for the Conference of Secretaries
is Dr. B. B. Beach of the Adventist Church, who on the occasion presented
the Pope with a gold medallion as "a symbol of the Seventh-day
Adventist Church." (Review, August 11, 1977, p. 23) Thus
in symbolism the Church was given into the hands of the Anti-christ.
No greater affront could be given to the God of Heaven than for His
chosen people through a representative to wantonly defy the message
of the Third Angel as was done on this occasion. This act was done with
the full approval of, and prior arrangements with the Northern Europe-West
Africa Division Committee. [For full details, see Steps to Rome]
The fraternization with the World Council of Churches
on an international level reaches down to the local units of this "community"
- the Ministerial Associations. Southern Tidings the official
paper of the Southern Union Conference in the Telex news section for
April, 1975, reported that Elder Robert Hunter, then pastor of the Morganton
District of the Carolina Conference, joined in the local ministerial
association's "Pulpit Exchange Day." The pulpit of the Adventist
Church on that day was occupied by Thomas Burke, parish priest of the
Roman Catholic Church. "The theme of the city-wide program was
'Blest Be the Tie."'
The strong contrast envisioned in the Third Angel's
Message between those who were to be entrusted with the giving of this
message, and the power symbolically represented by the "beast"
was nullified in a Brief presented in the United States
p 32 -- District Court
for Northern California. The Brief read: - Although
it is true that there was a period in the life of the Seventh-day Adventist
Church when the denomination took a distinctly anti-Roman Catholic viewpoint,
and the term "hierarchy" was used in a perjorative sense to
refer to the papal form of church governance, that attitude on the Church's
part was nothing more than a manifestation of widespread anti-popery
among conservative protestant denominations in the early part of this
century and the latter part of the last, and which has now been consigned
to the historical trash heap as far as the Seventh-day Adventist Church
is concerned. (Reply Brief for Defendants in Support of Their Motion
for Summary Judgment, Civ. No. 74-2025 CBR) [See Fotenote, p. 41, Excerpts
- Legal Documents; EEOC v. PPPA]
In the same Brief, the legal counsel for the Church's
officers quoted from an affidavit given by one of the intervenors, Mrs.
Lorna Tobler, in which she had sworn that during her training and instruction
in Adventist schools and churches, she had been taught that the Adventist
Church strongly disapproved "the Roman Catholic system." To
this the reply in the Brief read: - In
several ways this illustrates the dangers incurred by an individual
church member who presumes to deny the authority of the duly constituted
officials and governing bodies of the Church. In the first place, it
is true that for a period in its history, the Seventh-day Adventist
Church had an aversion to Roman Catholicism and especially to the papal
form of church government -- an aversion shared by virtually all Protestant
denominations ... While, however, Adventist doctrine continues to teach
that church government by one man is contrary to the Word of God, it
is not good Seventh-day Adventism to express, as Mrs Tobler has done,
an aversion to Roman Catholicism as such. (Ibid., p. 46)
How must the God of Heaven have felt when the Church,to
whom He had committed in sacred trust the giving of the Three Angels'
Messages, no longer shared the aversion" with which the book of
Revelation indicates He holds the Papal system?
Monetary Trust -- Not only did God entrust His
chosen people with truth, and the final message to the nations, but
He also entrusted them with the means to carry out this primary purpose
of their calling. How have these means been handled, and when were fateful
decisions made? In an article - "Investment Practices of the General
Conference," Elder Robert E. Osborn of the Church's Treasury Department
wrote: - Because
the General Conference is responsible for a large pool of capital, the
controlling investment and securities committee decided in 1967
to retain professional investment counsel. (This took place at the time
the "unitized funds" program. described later in this article,
began operation.) Lionel D. Edie & Company, Inc., of New York City,
was chosen to do the research, analysis, and selection of securities
for the General Conference portfolio. Members of the investment section
of the Treasurer's Office worked very closely with Edie & Company
and kept in communication by telephone and inperson conferences for
detailed review of current and projected trends in the economic and
money markets. (Spectrum, Vol. 5, #2, 1973)
The "unitized funds" program, as explained
by Osborn, "operated in a manner similar to mutual funds. All unit
holders (conferences, unions, divisions, the General Conference, and
church-owned institutions) own a proportionate share of the unitized
funds, on the basis of the amount invested; and unit holders share in
the investment income and capital appreciation." [And loss?] (Ibid.,
While no report is available to this writer as to the
amount of the losses sustained in playing the stock market by the General
Conference since 1967, a window into the results of this type of monetary
practice is to be found in reports of the investments made by one conference
in the Pacific Union. The Pacific Union had chosen to set up its own
investment program. One conference - Northern California - during a
period of six years - 1968-1973 - had a "paper
loss" of over $2 Million.This loss involved
p 33 -- funds of trust deposits, and revocable
trust funds. A Lay Advisory Committee reporting on the investments and
the losses stated - "If the trustors and trust depositors should
elect to withdraw their money the fund would be insolvent - unable to
honor these withdrawal requests." This committee made the following
two-fold recommendation: - That
the Conference and the Association adopt a policy of making no additional
stock investments after this date and of eliminating all investments
in common stock and stock investment funds and that the time for accomplishing
this be no more than two years. (Report #2, Sub-Committee on Conference
Organization & Finance of the Steering Committee of the NCC-LAC)
One member of the Steering Committee, Ken Cortner, reported
in the Adventist Laymen's Pipeline, July 1, 1983, the full picture
of these investment procedures. That report read: - Church
publications have been silent concerning some seven (7) million dollars
of Northern's [Northern California Conference] funds turned over to
the Pacific Union Conference in the late 60s and early 70s for investment
in the stock market. The market had seriously declined thereafter, and
in January 1974 conference officials, without disclosing either the
investment or the loss to the church members ordered the sale of shares
of stocks that had cost $837,402.97 for $500,000. The realized loss
in that single transaction that was sustained by Northern California
Conference and/or Association was $337,402.97.
In the fall of 1974,
a then independent Northern California Conference Lay Advisory Committee
(NCC-LAC), chaired by a lay person in contrast to the present (1983)
chairmanship being held and under the control of the conference president,
discovered the investments and asked the Conference Executive Committee
to call a halt to any further dealings in the stock market and that
divestiture of all stock held be completed within a two year period.
They contended the $2,053,298.42 loss of stock value from 1968 through
1973 was "only a paper loss" and that by waiting for whatever
time it took, the market would recover and possibly even bring a profit.
LAC members, generally. did not agree with that decision but lacking
authority and having only an advisory capacity felt that they had done
Local and Union
Conference officials had characterized the stock purchased as "all
of the blue chip variety" and that they had been selected by "a
group of experts to whom we gave complete authority to buy and sell
in our behalf." Laymen learned that the "group of experts"
contained not one single Seventh-day Adventist Church member and the
portfolio of stocks described as "all of the blue chip variety"
consisted of such companies as Ringling Bros., Barnum and Bailey Circus,
and among others, a host of small, insignificant, virtually unknown
and highly speculative businesses.
Keep in mind that this is but the story of one conference
and its investments. Some units of the General Conference "unitized
funds" program dissatisfied with the results turned to the glowing
possibility of Dr. Davenport's investment schemes. The story of the
resulting scandal need not be recited here.
Liberal Trend -- Not only
did the SDA-Evangelical Conferences in the mid-1950s signal a doctrinal
revision of some of the basic concepts of the Advent Movement, but by
the mid-1960s, "for the first time in the history of the church,
a whole generation of scholars with doctorates from secular universities
became active in church institutions." (Spectrum, Vol. 15,
#2, p. 23) Further, there were Adventists with a similar training in
gainful employment outside the church's institutions. Some of these
became convinced that individual participation within the framework
of the church was an ineffectual means of dealing with the issues of
the 20th Century they faced in the society in which they moved. Others
met in small groups both here and abroad "with the primary aim
of trying to understand how the secularizing and divisive trends [could]
be reversed." These groups were formed around academic and professional
p 34 -- "To further this spontaneous search
for meaningful participation, the General Conference of Seventh-day
Adventists invited representatives from several of the groups to meet
with them in October of 1967. The purpose was to discuss possible
methods of establishing a cohesive program to provide for dialogue between
the church leadership and this segment of the laity and to involve the
latter more significantly in the activities and concerns of the formal
church. The outgrowth of that meeting was an action by the officers
of the General Conference (taken at the 1967 Fall Council) to
approve the establishment of an organization known as The Association
of Adventist Forums." [AAF] (Spectrum, Vol 1, #1, Winter,
It is AAF which publishes Spectrum. This Association
with its publication has been on the "cutting edge" of liberal
trends within the church structure, manner of life, and doctrinal revision.
While they prefer to see themselves as "progressives," both
the liberals within the church, and the liberals of the Adventist community
outside the payroll structure find common cause. It was the AAF which
provided Dr. Desmond Ford the podium from which he launched his attack
on the sanctuary teaching of the Advent Movement.
During the administration of R. R. Figuhr, not only
was approval given but firm support maintained by Figuhr himself in
the publication of Questions on Doctrine. Further, during his
administration, provision was made for a study program in geology which
led to the establishment of the Geoscience Research Institute. In the
early 1960s a change was made in the leadership of the Institute, and
"by the mid-1960s, the progessives' [liberals'] study of the issues
led them to conclude that harmony between Genesis and geology required
some kind of a theological accommodation by the church." (Spectrum,
Vol. 15, #2, p. 26) This conclusion led to the appointment of two men
with theological backgrounds from the Seminary. The reason - "At
that time the most theologically flexible products of the Adventist
educational system were its seminary graduates." (Ibid.)
The resolution of the problem in the eyes of the liberals
required much more time be allotted than six literal days, and a creation
six thousand years ago of "the earth, the sea, and all that in
them is." (Ex. 20:11) Any altering of the concept of six literal
days for the creation of the earth ex
nihilo (out of nothing) strikes at the very heart of the
Sabbath commandment. In such a schema, the Sabbath ceases to be a specific
memorial, and the emphasis on the seventh day irrelevant. It can then
be thought of as a celebration, a weekly rest for man's restlessness.
It dare not be overlooked that all these major actions
which laid the groundwork for the acceptability of liberalism in the
Church, and open agitation of the same, was done with the full approval
of the highest officers of the Church, starting with Figuhr in the mid-1950s,
and culminating with the Pierson-Wilson official blessing in 1967.
The Closing Event -- In
1979, the Annual Council voted a new Statement of Beliefs to be presented
for adoption at the 1980 session of the General Conference in Dallas,
Texas. The full disclosure of all that took place in the formulation
of the Statement of Beliefs voted at the Annual Council and the final
adoption of the 27 Fundamentals as voted at Dallas, has yet to be written.
There are gaps in the story as known. This detail is beyond the scope
of this manuscript. However, certain factors of this story must be understood.
The Statement as adopted by the Annual Council was written by a group
of theologians at Andrews University. (Spectrum, Vol. 11, #3,
p. 61) It was sent out to "the division committees immediately
as well as unions and overseas colleges. It was given to the Adventist
Review for immediate publication in the hope that as many reactions
as possible could be received from the field prior to the General Conference
quinquennial session in Dallas. Unfortunately,
for reasons never disclosed, it did not appear for four months,
until February 21, 1980," (Ibid., #1, p. 6; emphasis mine)
p 35 -- Substantive changes
from previous Statements of Belief were apparent in the Andrews University
formulation. Sections on the Godhead were expanded; other sections contained
new terminology which altered historic Adventist concepts; and new sections
were added not covered in any previous Statements. Section 2, captioned,
"The Trinity" read in part: "That there is one God: Father,
Son, and Holy Spirit, a self-existing Unity in Trinity." Elsewhere
in the Statement, "the oneness of the triune God" is noted.
The death of Christ is spoken of as "this act of atonement"
and declared to be "a complete and perfect atonement." Such
a position makes any concept of a final atonement irrelevant. The heavenly
ministry of Christ is described as simply "making available to
believers, the benefits of His atoning sacrifice offered once for all
on the cross." Then in 1844, Christ merely "entered the second
and last phase of His atoning work." Baptism and the Lord's Supper
were noted as "sacraments," and "the service of foot
washing" was designated "a means to seek renewed cleansing."
The "ministries of the Church" as defined in the Statement
include "the ministry of intercession." All of these expressions
have Roman Catholic overtones. The Church itself is defined to be "the
company of believers who confess Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour."
(Adventist Review, Feb. 21, 1980, pp. 8-10)
When the time came for a discussion of the Statement
of Beliefs at Dallas, the delegates received a different formulation
than had been adopted at the Annual Council and no explanation was given
as to why. This brought expressions of shock and dismay from a number
of delegates. "Those who had been involved in formulating the earlier
draft felt that the new version was disastrous in form, if not content.
Gone was the balance, the beauty and the sensitivity to words. Clumsy
rhetoric prevailed." (Spectrum, Vol. 11, #1, p. 8) Substantive
alterations were also apparent. The statement on the Godhead was modified
to read - "There is one God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, a unity
of Three co-etemal Persons." Although there was considerable discussion
over this new wording (Adventist Review, April 22, 1980, pp.
11, 14), it was made a part of the voted Statement with only cosmetic
alterations. The terms, "sacraments" and "means"
were deleted as was also the idea of a minister in the role of an intercessor.
The Cross was still referred to as the "act of the atonement."
This was changed in the voted Statement to read - "this perfect
atonement" - which in reality changed nothing, still nullifying
the concept of a final atonement. If the Cross is the "perfect"
atonement nothing can be added to that which is perfect. In historic
Adventism, the Cross, typified by the Altar of the Court, is the place
of sacrifice and an atonement which brought forgiveness, to be followed
with a final atonement which resulted in cleansing. The section on the
Church was rewritten and divided into two statements, but when finally
voted, a key wording from the Andrews University formulation was restored
- "The church is a community of believers who confess Jesus Christ
as Lord and Saviour."
The retention of the definition of the Church from the
Andrews University formulation when coupled with the Statement on the
Trinity - a statement never appearing in any prior Statements of Belief
from 1872 to 1979 - is significant. These two concepts are borrowed
from the Constitution of the World Council of Churches. The first article
of that Constitution reads - "The World Council of Churches is
a fellowship of churches which confess the Lord Jesus Christ as God
and Saviour according to the Scriptures and therefore seek to fulfill
together their common calling to the one God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit."
Further, the idea of "one God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, a
unity of three co-etemal Persons" was first formulated
by the Council of Constantinople in A.D. 381.(Early Christian Doctrine,
In all three Statements - the Andrews University formulation,
the one given to the delegates, and the one finally voted by them -
there appears a phraseology describing the heavenly ministry of Christ
which also had never appeared in any previous statement of Adventist
beliefs. It read in its final form - "There is a sanctuary in heaven,
the true tabernacle which the Lord set up and not man. In it Christ
p 36 -- ministers in our behalf, making
available to believers the benefits of His atoning sacrifice offered
once for all on the cross." This language was first
used in the book - Questions on Doctrine (pp. 354-355, 381),
where it stated: - Jesus
our surety entered the "holy places" and appeared in the presence
of God for us. But it was not with the hope of obtaining something
for us at that time, or at some future time. No! He had already obtained
it for us on the cross. And now as our High Priest, He ministers
the virtues of the atoning sacrifice for us." (p. 381, emphasis
the morning session prior to the final reading and voting of the Statement
of Beliefs was Bishop Robert Terwilliger, a representative of the Anglican
Consultative Council. He had been reading the proposed Statement of
Beliefs, and had listened to some of the discussion. When he responded
to Dr. B. B. Beach's introduction, he said - "As I have read the
beliefs set before you for revision, I had hoped to find some degree
of disagreement. I had the most awful disappointment. I found increasingly
that we are together in our faith. Therefore the unity that we share
is not simply a unity of good will and fellowship but unity in faith
increasingly, a unity in Christ." (Adventist Review, May
1, 1980, p. 16)
How can God finish His work on the earth through an
instrumentality that has so altered the faith committed to it in trust
that an Anglican bishop perceives a growing unity with that which he
believes? This culminating denial in a series which began in the 1950s,
left God with no alternatives. The Church weighed in the balances of
the Sanctuary was found to be wanting. He had given the prophetic warning
in 1967 when the military forces of Israel retook Jerusalem that the
final period had begun - the achri
hou (until) of Luke 21:24. Now that period was up. Three
months after the Statement of Beliefs was voted at Dallas, the Israeli
Knesset voted to move the entire government from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
The times of the visitation of the nations being ended, God would take
things into His own hands for the completion of the Advent Movement
which He had begun in 1844. We are now in the tarrying time as events
move rapidly to the final conflict of the great day of God Almighty.
The end of all things is at hand. TOP
p 37 -- Chapter XI
Up until 1980, all decisions effecting the Church, doctrinally
and ecumenically, were made by the hierarchy at the highest levels of
administration. The laity had no part in deciding whether there should
be conferences with the Evangelicals. They were not consulted as to
the compromises made in doctrine, but were submitted, as were also the
lower levels of the clergy, the propaganda enforcing these compromises.
The book - Questions on Doctrine - was thrust upon them as a
The decision to make contact and carry on dialogue with
representatives of the World Council of Churches was not made by the
laity. And even though it was first initiated on a personal basis, it
was adopted and encouraged by the highest levels of church authority.
It was not a layperson who suggested that a Seventh-day Adventist theologian
be appointed to the Faith and Order Commission of the WCC. Neither was
it a lay decision to give the Church "in symbol" into the
hands of the Pope.
The laity did not enter into the decision to play the
stock market with its ensuing losses; neither did the laity initiate
nor promote the investments in the Davenport enterprises. But it was
the money the laity dedicated to the Church in tithes, offerings and
trusts for the work of the Lord which was gambled and lost.
The General Conference in 1980 enlarged the scope of
the involvement. The Church in general session voted the 27 Fundamental
Statements of Belief, and into these statements were incorporated the
compromises of the previous decades. While the General Conference in
session was and is considered the highest authority on earth speaking
for God, still the rank and file of the laity and clergy had little
voice. It was the theologians of the Church working in close alliance
with the top levels of administration who guided through the 1980 session
the new statement of beliefs which included concepts which never had
appeared in any previously accepted or voted statement. Some of these
new statements were very good, but this only adds to the deception,
producing a "tree" of both good and evil.
In the mind of the hierarchy, these new statements of
belief were not considered a rejection of the compromises made in the
Evangelical Conferences of 1955-1956, but were rather an affirmation
of them. However, due to the continued agitation in the Adventist community
by "dissidents," not only concerning the compromises of the
50's, but also because of what was written into the 27 Fundamentals,
the late Dr. Walter Martin, one of the chief conferees for the Evangelicals
at the conferences in the 50's, wrote to the General Conference. Here
is his rationale for writing and the answer he received in reply: -
I have always stressed the importance of doctrinal integrity in my evaluations
of religious movements, the doctrinal upheaval in Adventism is of special
concern. Consequently on February 16, 1983, I wrote the General Conference
of Seventh-day Adventists (Washington D.C.), calling for the Conference's
public and official statement reaffirming or denying the authority of
the Adventist book, Questions on Doctrine, which was the representative
Adventist publication on which I based my earlier evaluation and book.
On April 29, 1983, W. Richard Lesher, vice-president of the General
Conference [now president of Andrews University], responded in a personal
letter. His reply read in part: - "You
ask first if Seventh-day Adventists still stand behind the answers given
to your questions in Questions on Doctrine as they did in 1957.
The answer is yes. You have noted in your letter that some opposed the
answers then, and, to some extent, the same situation exists today.
p 38 -- the
great majority of Seventh-day Adventists are in harmony with the views
expressed in Questions on Doctrine." (The Kingdom
of the Cults, p. 410)
In 1985, another General Conference convened, this time
in New Orleans. During the final business meeting of the session, Elder
Neal C. Wilson commented on several requests that had come to re-open
discussion on the 27 Statements of Fundamental Beliefs. He then explained
why these requests had not be honored: - There
have been several requests for an open discussion of the Statement of
Fundamental Beliefs of Seventh-day Adventists. I want to explain why
we chose not to do this at this session. There seems to have been a
very favorable world reaction to and acceptance of the Fundamental Beliefs
as voted in 1980.
states that "when the church is led by the Holy Spirit to a fuller
understanding of Bible truth or finds better language in which to express
the teachings of God's Holy Word," wording revision could be discussed
again. Frankly, throughout this past five years there has been no one
who has revealed to us that the Holy Spirit has led in making any substantive
There needs to be
a degree of permanence to a Statement of Fundamental Beliefs. It should
not be opened up every time we meet, seeing how we can word it a little
differently. When the Holy Spirit leads us to some different conclusions
or when it seems as though the Holy Spirit points out that it should
be more clearly stated, we want certainly to open it. For these reasons
we have chosen to leave this statement as it is. (Adventist Review,
July 11, 1985, p. 17)
The 1985 Session was large1y devoted to organizational
changes. No suggestion was made that the Church should return to the
structure as formulated in 1901 and rejected in 1903. It should be kept
in mind that it was this rejection of the 1901 Constitution which caused
Ellen G. White to call for corporate repentance and conversion. But
no such repentance was forthcoming at the 1985 Session, but rather a
continuing fulfillment of the warning sounded by P. T. Magan at the
1903 Session. (See Chapter IX, p. 26) Papal language was used during
the session in illustrating the roles of the officers of the General
Conference. Wilson, in responding to questions raised by a report of
the nominating committee and a feeling expressed from the floor that
the selection of leadership did not rightly represent the Church in
the Third World, stated - "If you compare vice presidents to 'cardinals,'
we already have a 'cardinal' from Africa, and before this session ends,
I predict we will have two African 'cardinals' among the 15 vice presidents."
He used the same comparison a second time in this response. (Bulletin,
p. 795) There is no desire to repent but organizational strengthening
of hierarchical control in continued rebellion against the purposes
As the Church prepared for the 1888 Centennial celebration,
opportunity was provided for the laity to evaluate and decide in regard
to the 27 Fundamental Statements of Belief. In the Ministry (April,
1988) and in the Adventist Review (April 7, 1988), Elder Neal
C. Wilson revealed the plan for the Sabbath School lessons for the last
two quarters of that year. He wrote: - The
framework is already in place for intense study of the fundamental doctrines
of the church. The Sabbath School lessons for the last two quarters
of this year focus on our 27 fundamental beliefs. Seventh-day Adventists
Believe..., the 325-page doctrinal book on which we have been working
for two years, will be on the press by May 1. The manuscript for this
book has been read and critiqued by more than 200 Adventist scholars
and church leaders around the world. Each of the 27 chapters takes an
in-depth look at one of our beliefs. And yet the book is written in
such a way that every member of the church can understand and grasp
the importance of these great truths that bind us together.
Although the book was written in a style which the
average laymen could grasp, they were not provided with previous statements
of belief held by the church so that a comparison could be made as to
changes that were voted in 1980 and the gravity of those changes. Each
individual member of the Church needed an opportunity to decide if indeed
the 27 Statements are fundamental truths, or apostate formulations,
p 39 -- mixture of the two which would make them
the more deceptive.
The Lord through Hosea declared - "My people are
destroyed for lack of knowledge." (4:6) It is not that the laity
have had no opportunity to obtain knowledge. The facts of what has taken
place over the past three decades have been available to all who wished
to know. But "false prophets" on the periphery of Adventism
have been plucking leaves from the "pretentious" fig tree
to lure the concerned laity into thinking that they have an understanding
of the apostasy which has engulfed the Church. Nevertheless these agents
of Satan (II Cor. 11:13-15) have urged the laity to give at least lip
service to these 27 Statements of Belief so that some of them could
still find entrance into the "sanctuaries" of the Church.
Thus this segment of the concerned laity have been robbed by these "false
prophets" of essential facts so as to evaluate correctly the Sabbath
School lessons and the book on them. One such "false prophet"
when asked to take a stand on the changes made in the 1980 Statement
of Beliefs from the previous statements, replied through an associate
- "Up to this time we have not performed a thorough analysis of
the 27 fundamental beliefs. Thus we cannot provide an official critique
of them." This letter was dated January 3, 1989, over eight years
after the Statements were voted at Dallas, and yet this "false
prophet" has proclaimed himself a spokesman for "historic"
Adventism holding to the "firm foundation."
A vast segment of the laity who studied the Sabbath
School lessons during the last two quarters of 1988 were brought into
church fellowship under the ministry of men who had been taught in college
and the Seminary the apostate teachings arising from the compromises
made with the Evangelicals thirty years ago. How large this segment
actually is can be noted in the membership difference between 1955,
the time of the SDA-Evangelical Conferences and the present. From about
one million members worldwide, the Church grew in three decades to over
five million. A sizeable portion of the ministry of the Church has been
recruited from this influx of new members during this same period. However,
the lesson plan for the final two quarters of 1988 did give each individual
the opportunity to review for himself what the Church officially proclaimed
itself to believe, and whether he would concur or dissent.
There is a prophecy in the Writings of Ellen G. White
which has a direct relationship to this present time. (See Appendix
A) In this prophecy, she wrote that "the church - the Lord's sanctuary
- was the first to feel the stroke of the wrath of God." (5T:211)
And she told why - The
ancient men, those to whom God had given great light, and who had stood
as guardians of the spiritual interests of the people, had betrayed
their trust. (Ibid.)
But the final sentence of this prophecy could not be
fulfilled until every member of
the church had an opportunity to evaluate the situation to see if they
would choose to
accept the betrayal of the sacred "trust" by "the ancient
men." That sentence reads
"Men, maidens, and little children all perish together." The
opportunity was given in the study of the Sabbath
School lessons for the final two quarters of 1988 to make that evaluation
The fearful import of the final six months of 1988 cannot
be fully perceived unless we understand clearly the lessons of the final
years of the Jewish Church/Nation as a corporate entity before God,
and the time allotted by God for the individual members of that church
to make a decision. Further the close parallel between recent Jewish
history and the Seventh-day Adventist Church history tells us in the
words of Ezekiel - "It
is coming, the hour has come, the hour is striking at you, the hour
and the end." (Eze. 7:6-7 Mofatt)
p 40 -- CHAPTER XII
From the Jewish Church for Today
God in His foreknowledge had determined the time to
be allotted to the Jewish Church and its holy city. To Daniel was revealed
that "seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy
holy city." (9:24) Yet in the close of the probation of the Jewish
Church, the time varied for various segments of that Church.
A careful study of the book of Acts reveals the hierarchy
of the Jewish Church passed the point of no return prior to the time
that probation closed for the Jewish Church as a corporate body. Observe
closely, with your Bible open, the following points:
On the Day of Pentecost (A.D. 31), Peter preached to "devout"
Jews (2:5) and called them to repentance. (2:38) The hierarchy were
busy at the Temple with the festivities of that day.
after the Day of Pentecost, but prior to A.D. 34, Peter again called
the laity, who had gathered in the Temple courts for the hour of prayer,
to repent. (3:1, 19)
While speaking to the people, Peter and John were arrested by the Temple
police, and on the following day were arraigned before Annas, Caiaphas,
and other of the kindred of the high priest. (4:6-7) Peter boldly charged
these top leaders of the Jewish Church with the crucifixion of Jesus
(4:10); but at no point did Peter call them to repent.
The leadership of the Jewish Church had passed their
day of probation prior to the time allotted to the Jewish nation as
a corporate body.
In A. D. 34, Stephen standing before the supreme "council"
of the Jewish Church arraigned them in judgment before God as the "betrayers
and murderers" of "the Just One." (6:15; 7:52) There
was no call to repentance, for the hour of the end of the "seventy
weeks" had arrived. In the execution of the judgment of the high
council of the Jewish Church upon Stephen, probation closed for that
Church as a corporate body. Yet for another 36 years, the forms and
ceremonies of the Jewish religion would continue to be practiced in
the Temple before the "curtains" fell on that Temple and the
"holy city." Why was time extended?
In the decision of the Jewish hierarchy to kill Jesus,
the laity of the Jewish Church were not involved, although as a part
of "the house of Israel," they shared accountability. (Acts
2:36) When Stephen was stoned, the decision was made by the Jewish "council."
Again the laity were not involved, but as a part of the corporate body
shared in that guilt. God, being a God of justice and mercy, granted
time so that the individual member of the Jewish Church might decide
whether the decisions of the Jewish leadership were correct, or whether
the testimony of the apostles of Jesus was true. This necessitated not
only that the Jewish laity in Jerusalem receive a call to repentance,
as on the Day of Pentecost; but also that the same laity scattered in
the synagogues of the Diaspora be given the same opportunity. This is
what the major part of the book of Acts is all about. Not only does
Paul carry the gospel to the Gentiles, but he enters the synagogues
and tells the individual members what their hierarchy did at Jerusalem.
(Acts 13:27-29) The book of Acts closes with a confrontation
of Paul with the local leadership in Rome. (28:17, 23-29) This final
picture of the book of Acts takes place within the shadow of the time
when the "sign" Jesus gave marking the hour for the destruction
of the city of Jerusalem
p 41 -- occurred - A.D. 66. The end of all things
for the Jewish Church was at hand - its ritual and its temple services
in A.D. 70.
This history can be diagramed and its significance -visualized
(1) A.D. 31 - Close of Probation
for the Jewish hierarchy in the crucifixion of Jesus Christ.
(2) A.D. 34 - Close of Probation
for the Jewish Church as a corporate body.
- Decision time for the laity of the Jewish Church.
In the fate of this once "holy city," we can
see "a symbol of the world hardened in unbelief and rebellion,
and hastening on to meet the retributive judgments of God." (Great
Controversy, p. 22) Also in this city, we see fulfilled events which
Jesus connected with "the scenes which are to take place in the
history of this world just prior to the coming of the Son of
man in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory." (Counsels
to Writers, pp. 23-24) In these final events, it is not the probation
of the Jewish Church which is involved, it is the probation of the Seventh-day
Adventist Church, modern "spiritual Israel," to whom sacred
trusts were committed as was to the ancient Jewish Church.
The Seventh-day Adventist Church cannot divorce itself
from the fate of the nations. To the Church was committed the trust
of giving "the everlasting gospel... to every nation." (Rev.
14:6) In a special sense to the Seventh-day Adventist Church was "entrusted
the last warning for a perishing world." (9T:19) Following
the Great Disappointment in 1844, as the minds of a small group of disappointed
ones were directed to the High Priestly ministry of Jesus, they perceived
as "the closing work of the church" the giving "to
the world the warning of the third angel of Revelation 14."
(SP, IV, p. 272)
Jesus linked the fate and probation of the nations with
events which were to take place in the history of Jerusalem. He plainly
foretold the destruction of the city, and gave the sign by which His
followers would know that time was imminent. In the same prophecy,
Jesus also set the boundary of the probation of the nations as corporate
entities. Jesus declared that Jerusalem - the city, not the temple -
was to be trodden underfoot by the nations "until the times of
the nations be fulfilled." (Luke 21:24) [In the Greek, there is
but one word for "nations" and "Gentiles"] Inasmuch
as the fate of the Church is linked to the fate of the nations because
of the trust committed tothe Church involving the final warning to the
nations, this prophecy of Jesus becomes a major factor in understanding
the true significance of the "now" time to which we have come.
Further, the fate of the Jewish Church and the fate
of the Seventh-day Adventist Church was linked in a letter sent to Elders
George I. Butler and S. N. Haskell in 1886. That letter read in part:
think of His [Jesus,] great sorrow as He wept over Jerusalem, exclaiming,
"0 Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest
them that are sent unto thee; how often would I have gathered thy children
together, as a hen doth gather her brood under her wings, and ye would
notl" [Luke 13:34] God forbid that these words shall apply to those
who have great light and blessings. In the rejecting of Jerusalem it
was because great privileges were abused which brought the denunciation
upon all who lightly regarded the great opportunities and precious light
p 42 -- that
were entrusted to their keeping. Privileges do not commend us to God,
but they commend God to us. No people are saved because they have great
light and special advantages, for these high and heavenly favors only
increase their responsibility. ...
When Jerusalem was
divorced from God, it was because of her sins. ... The depth of our
ruin is measured by the exalted light to which God has raised us in
His great goodness and unspeakable mercy. Oh, what privileges are granted
to us as a people! And if God spared not His people that He loved
because they refused to walk in the light, how can He spare the people
whom He has blessed with the light of heaven in having opened to them
the most exalted truth ever entrusted to mortal man to give to the world?
(Letter 8-55-1886; emphasis supplied)
The parallel between the history of Jerusalem in the
fulfillment of the prophecy of Jesus in Luke 21:24, and the history
of the Church in its rejection of the truth entrusted to her is so related
that it dare not be overlooked. (See Appendix D) This parallel and the
message of the book of Acts tell us where we are in the stream of time
as God's professed people today. Let us recapitulate the data and its
June 21, 1948, Israel again became a nation. This did not fulfill
a prophecy. Coming events were merely casting their shadows before.
This event did, however, force the Seventh-day Adventist Church to review
its prophetic interpretation concerning Israel as a nation. In 1944,
the Pacific Press published a book - Palestine in Prophecy -
which stated that "those who are holding the hope of national restoration
for the Jews are following a theological will-o'-the-wisp." (p.
95) In 1947, the same press published another book - The Jews and
Palestine - with the specific declaration that "careful study
of both the Old and New Testament reveals that the literal descendants
of Abraham, as a nation, will never be re-established in the Holy Land."
(p. 61) Yet within a year, what we said could not, and would not be,
did occur. We then backed up to the position Edson White had taken in
his book - The Coming King - first published in 1898, which stated:
also read that "Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles,
until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled." Luke 21:24. Jerusalem
has never again come into possession of the Jews, and will not until
"the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled." This will be when
the work of the gospel is finished. (p. 98; See Exhibit #5)
We publicly proclaimed this position at the 1952 Bible
Conference. Elder Arthur S. Maxwell in his presentation noted Luke 21:24
as one of the yet unfullfilled prophecies as of that date, stating that
"Jerusalem is to remain trodden down of the Gentiles till probationary
time of all Gentiles has run out." (Our Firm Foundation,
Vol. 2, p. 231; See Exhibit #I) But today, Jerusalem is under Jewish
control, and has become the capital of the nation. (See Exhibit #8)
We are again faced with the fact that we still have not interpreted
this prophecy accurately. We have failed to distinguish between "nations"
as corporate entities, and "individuals." To face this distinction
is not to our liking because the fate of the Church as a corporate entity
is tied to the fate of the nations because of the message committed
to the trust of the Church. In the fulfillment of Luke 21:24, God is
trying to tell us something and we will not listen.
In 1950, God sent to the Church two "messengers"
even as He did in 1888. Elders R. J. Wieland and D. K. Short called
for denominational repentance, the only solution to the problem
and need of the Church. The Church was soon to face its moment of truth
in the soon fulfillment of Luke 21:24, resultant from the establishment
of the Jewish State in 1948. In other words, the call of these two "messengers"
was a message from God on time. While Elders Wieland and Short did not
correctly interpret the nature of the repentance called for, and have
since wandered off course as did Waggoner and Jones, the fact that God
called for a denominational repentance, - this was clearly presented
in 1950. But what was the reaction? In the first response of the General
Conference in 1951, the hierarchy rejected their manuscript - 1888
Re-Examined - as too "critical." Another evaluation in
1958 also rejected it.
p 43 -- Between 1950 and
1958, a major event occurred within the Church. The SDA-Evangelical
Conferences were held and the resultant book - Questions on Doctrine
- denied the sacred trust committed to the Church. Then in 1967 (June
5-10) came fhe Six-Day War, and Jerusalem was once again in Jewish hands
after 1900 years. This was the beginning of the final period of the
"times of the nations" (Gentiles). Within days another series
of events began to unfold: -
1) June 27-29 - A committee
of the General Conference met in Washington and after hearing Elder
R. J. Wieland in person, again rejected his and Short's manuscript because
"its fruitage is evil." [Wieland and Short's revised edition
of 1888 ReExamined does not give the true picture. It has been
altered. But the manuscript A Warning and Its Reception - gives
the complete data.]
2) July 30 - August 8 - .
The triennial meeting of the Faith and Order Commission of the World
Council of Churches met in Bristol, England. For the first time, a representative
of the Seventh-day Adventist theological viewpoint sat in session as
a voted member by the Central Committee of the WCC. He was Dr. Earle
Hilgert, then of Andrews University. Now Dr. Roaul Dederen also of Andrews
University has taken Hilgert's place.
3) October 17-24 - The
Annual Council of the Church gave recognition to the Association of
Adventist Forums. It was from the podium of this organization that Dr.
Desmond Ford launched his attack on the Sanctuary truth in 1979.
4) December 15 - The
first issue of "Watchman, What of the Night?' was mailed to a small
list of names. For 23 years now this publication has been calling the
attention of the Church to the apostasy both in doctrine and deed which
has engulfed it.
Prior to 1967, another series of events began to unfold
which reached their fruition in 1980. At the final session of Vatican
II, an observer of the SDA Church and a member of the WCC Secretariat
made arrangements for private dialogue. The first unofficial meeting
took place in 1965. (So Much in Common, p. 98) Also in 1965,
Dr. Bernard Seton wrote from Switzerland to the General Conference of
the need for a revised Statement of Beliefs. This beginning, though
at first rejected by the General Conference, ultimately led to the 27
Fundamental Statements of Belief voted at Dallas on April 25, 1980.
In 1967, when Israel took Jerusalem, the capital remained
at Tel Aviv. However, on July 30, 1980, the Knesset (Parliament) of
Israel made Jerusalem "the capital of Israel" and "the
seat" of all government of the nation. Thus was completed the fulfillment
of Luke 21:24. What does this mean?, We are now living in the time which
would be parallel with the end times of the Jewish Church and nation
- A.D. 34 - A.D. 70 - when the Jewish laity had to make a decision regarding
the actions of the Jewish hierarchy.
For the Seventh-day Adventist Church today, all the
actions of the leadership of the Church since 1950 onward focus in one
document - the 27 Fundamental Statements of Belief. The compromise with
the Evangelicals which denied the sacred trust committed to the Advent
Movement is transcribed into the Statement. The requirement for membership
in the World Council of Churches as written in the Constitution of the
WCC is verbally written into the Statements of Belief. For six months
the Sabbath School lessons were devoted to these Fundamentals. A new
book - Seventhday Adventists Believe... - details chapter by
chapter each of the Statements. At the Centennial Celebration of 1888,
these 27 Statements were proclaimed as the acceptance of the 1888 Message.
It is now before each individual member of the Church as to which road
he will take - the Way of the Sacred Trust, or the denial of that Trust
over the past four decades by the hierarchy.
p 44 -- APPENDIX
A -- Ezekiel
9 and Luke 21:24 -- As Seen in Testimonies for the Church --
Internal evidence indicates there are three prophetic
testimonies which are in themselves inter-related and coincide in their
fulfillment with the prophecy of Jesus as given in Luke 21:24. These
testimonies are to be found in Vol. III, pp. 266-267, Vol. V, pp. 207-216,
and Vol. VIII, pp. 247-251. The relationship between the first two of
these testimonies is very obvious - both quote directly from Ezekiel
9. In Vol. III, p. 267, after quoting Ezekiel 9:4, the instruction is
given - "Read the ninth chapter of Ezekiel." The reference
in Vol. V quotes Ezekiel 9:1, 3b-6 at the very beginning of the chapter.
The relationship between the first two references and
Vol. VIII, pp. 247f., is not so obvious, but can be readily deducted
by comparing what is written within each testimony. In the chapter,
"The Seal of God," it speaks of a time when "the glory
of the Lord had departed
from Israel." (V:210) In the chapter, "Shall We Be Found Wanting?"
the same language is used - "My Father's house is made a house
of merchandise, a place whence the divine presence and glory have
departed!" (VIII:250) Thus both chapters are describing
the same condition and time. Using the geometrical axiom that if a =
b, and b = c, then a = c; we find all of these testimonies interrelated.
The time on which these events focus is given in Vol.
V, pp. 207-208, where it reads - "Jesus is about to leave the mercy-seat
of the heavenly sanctuary, to put on garments of vengeance." In
Adventist terminology, this means simply that the events as noted in
Vol. V, pp. 207-213 are to take place just prior to the close of all
human probation. The last paragraph on p. 212, begins with a quote of
Daniel 12:1, and then the comment is made - "When this time of
trouble comes, every case is decided; there is no longer probation,
no longer mercy for the impenitent." (p. 213)
There is, however, another time mentioned in this chapter.
On page 208, the example of the Amorites is cited as to how God has
dealt with the nations in the past. Then the conclusion is drawn: -
unerring accuracy, the Infinite One still keeps an account with all
nations. While His mercy is tendered, with calls to repentance,
this account will remain open, but when the figures reach a certain
amount which God has fixed, the ministry of His wrath commences. The
account is closed. Divine patience ceases. There is no more pleading
of mercy in their [the nations'] behalf.
The next paragraph inter-relates this time with Ezekiel
9 - "The prophet [Ezekiel], looking down the ages, had this
time presented before his vision." One reads in vain
for any reference to "the nations" in Ezekiel 9. Ezekiel 9
is concerned with the Church, and the sealing of those who sigh and
cry for the abominations done within it. But the time of the events
prophetically symbolized in Ezekiel 9 are pinpointed as taking place
at the time mercy is no longer extended to the nations. Jesus in Luke
21:24 gives that sign to be, Jerusalem no longer under Gentile control.
This brief period began in 1967 with the taking of Old Jerusalem by
Israeli military forces, and ended with the transfer of the entire civil
government from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in 1980. Thus we are living in
the time when the events portrayed in these three testimonies are or
have been fulfilled. And these testimonies relate to the Church!
Vol. III, pp. 266-267 indicates this to be the time
of "the closing work for
the church," -- the "last
work" as prefigured in the charge to the man clothed
p 45 -- with a writer's
inkhorn by his side.
Vol. V, pp. 209-213 tells us that two groups will be
developed - "the little company" also called "the faithful
few ... who have preserved the faith in its purity, and kept themselves
unspotted from the world." It also tells us that "the church
- the Lord's sanctuary - was the first to receive the stroke of the
wrath of God."
Vol. VIII, pp. 247-251 indicates the Seventh-day Adventist
church as a corporate body is to be weighed in the. balances of the
sanctuary, and if she is judged as having failed the trust committed
to her, on her will be pronounced the sentence - "Found wanting."
Further, the servant of the Lord hears the Divine Instructor asking
- "How is the faithful city become an, harlot?" This is the
question! The once faithful city - who during the 1940s and 1950s experienced
the golden years of an evangelistic thrust which proclaimed the message
worldwide - the sanctuary, the mark of the beast - all! - now declared
to be "an harlot!" How? The answer is simple, and found in
the testimony itself. The Church refused to heed the call to repentance
asked by God even though He sent two messengers with this call in 1950.
The results followed: she first played the harlot with the Evangelicals,
then turned to the World Council of Churches. When she altered her doctrinal
position to include both the thinking of the Evangelicals and the WCC,
God indicated He was betrayed enough, and permitted the final sign given
by Jesus to be fulfilled.TOP
B -- What
Will the Final Witness Be?
There are those, who, when confronted with the significance
of Christ's prophecy in Luke 21:24, ask - Does this mean that when Jerusalem
was no longer under Gentile control, probation had closed for all individuals?
The answer is, No! Only the times of the nations had been fulfilled.
Then another question follows - If the present work is for the Church
- "the closing work
for the church" - then how and when will the final witness
be given to the individuals who perhaps have never heard the truth for
The same night that Jesus gave the prophecy concerning
Jerusalem which would serve as a sign when the times of the visitation
of the nations were ended, He also told what the final witness would
be. This part of the prophecy is found in Mark's gospel. It reads: -
take heed to, yourselves: for they shall deliver you up to councils;
and in the synagogues ye shall be beaten: and ye shall be brought before
rulers and kings for my sake, for a testimony against them. (Mark 13:9)
The 10th verse is interposed parenthetically - and it
gives the time location, reading: "And the gospel must first be
published among the nations." When the gospel has been given as
a witness to the nations, their times of visitation are fulfilled, and
the end period begins. After giving this time setting, Jesus continued
the thought of the 9th verse: - But
when they shall lead you, and deliver you up, take no thought beforehand
what ye shall speak, neither do ye premeditate: but whatsoever shall
be given you in that hour, that speak ye: for it is not ye that speak,
but the Holy Spirit.
For men and women to merely open their mouths, and the
voice of the Holy Spirit is heard can mean only one thing - they are
completely filled and controlled by the
p 46 -- Holy Spirit. The final atonement of Jesus
will have accomplished its objective, and the fulness of the latter
rain will have been experienced by the "faithful few" who
have overcome by the blood of the Lamb, and who are now ready to give
their testimony, loving not their lives unto death. (See Rev. 12:11)
God alone will be exalted in that day. It will not be
men nor institutions which will be headlined by this experience. Those
who bow their hearts before God in surrender in the closing moments
of human probation as a result of this final witness, will be known
only to God. It is our responsibility now to understand what it means
to be so completely emptied of self that the Spirit of God will alone
appear not only in our manner of conduct, but be able to take over our
minds and voices. The image of Jesus, who "emptied Himself"
(Phil. 2:7 RV) and who declared, "of my own self, I can do nothing*'
(John 5:30) will be mirrored in such lives. TOP
APPENDIX C --
In the Adventist Heritage, Vol. 4, #2 (1977),
Elder T. E. Unruh who chaired the SDA-Evangelical Conferences told how
they began and what took place during these exchanges in 1955 and 1956.
He wrote: - I
wrote a letter on November 28, 1949, commending Dr. Donald Grey Barnhouse
for his radio sermons on righteousness by faith based on the book of
Romans. At the time, Dr. Barnhouse was a popular radio preacher, minister
of the Tenth Presbyterian Church of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, author
of a number of Evangelical books, and founder and senior editor of the
influential Eternity magazine. I was president of the East Pennsylvania
Conference with headquarters in Reading.
In his reply to
my letter, Barnhouse expressed astonishment that an Adventist clergyman
would commend him for preaching righteousness by faith, since in his
opinion it was a well known fact that Seventh-day Adventists believed
in righteousness by works. He went on to state that since boyhood he
had been familiar with Adventists and their teachings, and that in his
opinion their views about the nature and work of Christ were Satanic
and dangerous. He concluded by inviting this strange Adventist to have
lunch with him. We did not then get together for lunch, but did correspond
for a time.
Six years later a contact was made with Unruh by Walter
Martin. Unruh tells of this: - In
the spring of 1955, almost six years after my correspondence with Barnhouse,
I heard from Walter Martin, who had seen our correspondence and who
asked for a face-to-face contact with representative Seventh-day Adventists.
Martin had written a chapter critical of Adventism in his Rise of
the Cults and now wanted to talk with Adventists before doing further
writing on the subject of our doctrines...
It was understood
from the outset that Martin, a research polemicist, had been commissioned
to write against Seventh-day Adventism. Nevertheless, he declared that
he wanted direct access so he could treat Adventists fairly. When I
explained to friends at the Adventist headquarters in Washington, D.C.,
they agreed that Martin should be treated fairly, and provided with
the contacts he sought. Martin expressly asked to meet LeRoy E. Froom.
... Froom suggested the inclusion of W. E. Read, then field secretary
of the General Conference. ...
In March 1955, Martin
came to Washington for the first meeting with the Adventists. With him
was George E. Cannon, a professor of theology on the faculty of Nyack,
New York, Missionary College.
Unruh in this report tells what doctrinal positions
the Adventist conferees told the Evangelicals the Church held. He wrote
- "We stated our conviction that the Bible is the inspired Word
of God and the only rule of Adventist faith and practice. We affirmed
our belief in the eternal and complete deity of Christ, in His sinless
life in the incarnation, in His atoning death on the cross, once for
all and all-sufficient, in his
p 47 -- literal resurrection, and in His priestly
ministry before the Father, applying
the benefits of the atonement completed on the cross. And,
finally, while setting no time, we affirmed our belief in the imminent
premillenial return of Jesus Christ." (Emphasis supplied)
Reporting on the same conference, Barnhouse tells of
the doctrine most troublesome to them and what he and Martin heard the
Adventists state concerning this teaching. Here is his report: - The
final major area of disagreement is over the doctrine of the "investigative
judgment," which is a doctrine never known in theological history
until the second half of the nineteenth century and which is a doctrine
exclusively held by the Seventh-day Adventists. At the very beginning
of our contacts with the Adventist leaders, Mr. Martin and I thought
that this would be the doctrine on which it would be impossible to come
to any understanding which would permit our including them among those
who could be counted as Christians believing in the finished work of
Christ. In order to understand this doctrine of "investigative
judgment" it is necessary to devote a few paragraphs to Adventist
To put it in the
words of Hiram Edson (the man in the corn field who first conceived
this peculiar idea), he was overwhelmed with the conviction "that
instead of our High Priest coming out of the Most Holy of the
heavenly sanctuary to come to earth on the tenth day of the seventh
month at the end of the 2300 days, He for the first time entered
on that day the second apartment of the sanctuary, and He had
a work to perform in the Most Holy before coming to this earth."
It is to my mind, therefore, nothing more than a human, face-saving
idea! It should also be realized that some uninformed Seventh-day Adventists
took this idea and carried it to fantastic literal extremes. Mr. Martin
and I heard the Adventist leaders say, flatly, that they repudiate all
such extremes. This they said in no uncertain terms. Further, they do
not believe, as some of their earlier teachers taught, that Jesus' atoning
work was not completed on Calvary but instead that He is still carrying
on a second ministering work since 1844. This idea is also totally
repudiated. They believe that since His ascension Christ
has been ministering the benefits of the atonement which He completed
on Calvary. ("Are Seventh-day Adventists Christians?"
- Eternity, Sept., 1956; Emphasis supplied, except
documentation - both the report in Adventist Heritage, and the
reports from the viewpoint of the Evangelicals in Barnhouse's publication,
Eternity, can be found in the published manuscript - The Seventh-day
Adventist Evangelical Conferences of 1955-1956.]
APPENDIX D -- LaRondelle
and Luke 21:24
Andrews University Press published as Vol. XIII in the
series, "Studies in Religion," a monograph by Dr. Hans K.
LaRondelle captioned - The Israel of God in Prophecy. One section
- #10 - involves what LaRondelle calls "Problematic Texts."
The last one to be considered is Luke 21:24 with the question asked
- "Is Jerusalem no longer trampled on by the Gentiles since A.D.
1967?" LaRondelle devoted three pages of discussion to this Scripture
- pp. 164-167 - and never comes to grips with the question. He first
quotes a "dispensational" writer and the Scofield Reference
Bible. This is understandable since the whole of the monograph is
a "continual dialogue with dispensationalism." (Book Review,
Seminary Studies, Vol. 22, #3, p. 373)
The bottom line in the consideration of Luke 21:24 emerges
as a discussion of the force of the conjunction, "until" (achri).
LaRondelle stated - "The conjunction 'until' does not always imply
a promise of restoration to a preceding situation. The precise
p 48 -- meaning of 'until' depends on the context
in which it is used." (p. 166) Then, after
quoting Hendricksen, LaRondelle concludes: "It is definitely true
that the conjunction,
does not contain, in itself, the suggestion of a change to a previous
situation." (p. 167) Four illustrations from
the New Testament are given to illustrate and substantiate this point
- but none are
from Luke or Acts. The conclusion is then drawn - "The context
alone indicates whether the conjunction 'until' intends to convey the
idea of change." (Ibid.)
It seems that the whole objective of Christ's prophecy
is missed. The events in the history of Jerusalem are being used only
as signs for
something else, rather than signalling a change
in the status of Jerusalem or Israel before God. The special status
relationship ended in A.D. 34, but Jerusalem still continued to be a
sign for God's
"new" Israel to watch. First, the approach of the Roman armies
and their surprise withdrawal served as a sign
for the Christians to flee the city. Lastly, the return of Jerusalem
to Jewish control - to the same people who had controlled the city in
A.D. 70, signalled the end of the days of visitation for the nations
of earth. The change of status indicated by the word, "until"
was in the status of the nations before God, not a "second chance"
for the Jews.
In Luke's gospel and the book of Acts, the word, achri
or achris occurs
20 times, more times than any other New Testament writer. Three of these
twenty times, achri
is combined with the relative,
hou. Let us note some of these references, and observe how
change is consistently conveyed by the word, achri,
and what kind of change is indicated: -
Luke 1:20 - "And
behold thou [Zacharias] shalt be dumb, and not able to speak, until
the day that these things shall be performed."
Luke 17:27 - "They
did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage,
until the day that Noe entered the ark, and the flood came and
destroyed them all."
Acts 1:1-2 - "The
former treatise have I made, 0 Theophilus, of all things that Jesus
began to do and teach, until the day in which He was taken up."
Acts 3:20-21 - "And
He shall send Jesus Christ which before was preached unto you: whom
the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all
Acts 13:11 - "And
now, behold, the hand of the Lord is upon thee (Elymas], and thou shalt
be blind, not seeing the sun for (achri) a season."
Acts 20:11 - "When
he [Paul] therefore was come up again, and had broken bread, and eaten,
and talked a long while, even till the break of day, so he departed."
In both places in the book of Acts where achri
is combined with the relative, hou,
a change is also indicated. In Acts 7:17-18, a change is noted in the
favor of the Egyptian king toward the Israelites from previous Pharaohs.
In Acts 27:32-33, Paul is pictured as urging those who have been fasting
to eat bread, and this "while (achri
hou) the day was coming on" - or until the break of
day. Thus the use of the same idiom in Luke 21:24 indicates a change
- a change in the control of the city back to the control as in A.D.
70, not in its status before God. This change in the control of Jerusalem,
however, did signal a change
in the status of the nations before God.
LaRondell is so caught up in his dialogue with "dispensationalism"
that he is looking at Luke 21:24 only as it is taught by the various
schools of dispensational thought, thus missing the whole import of
what Jesus is saying by this sign. It may well be that many, aware of
the evangelical-dispensational teaching regarding Jerusalem, find it
difficult to separate the rubbish of error from the prophetic truth
Jesus is seeking to convey in Luke 21:24. TOP
p 49 -- APPENDIX E
-- Historical Parallels
When one really perceives that the prophetic utterances
of Jesus have significance for His followers, then the historical parallel
between events in secular history and the events in the history of the
Seventh-day Adventist Church speaks with force. When one understands
that "the most solemn truths ever entrusted
to mortals were given to the Seventh-day Adventist Church (9T:19);
and that the Church "is to be weighed" in "the balances
of the sanctuary" regarding "the work entrusted
to her" (8T:247), this historical parallel becomes terrifyingly
||SDA Church History
||The Lambeth Conference of Bishops of
the Anglican Church adopts four principles as the basis for church
unity. This became known as the Lambeth Quadrilateral. (This was
the first step that led to the Faith and Order Movement and then
ultimately to the World Council of Churches)
||The Minneapolis General Conference
session and the Message of' Righteousness by Faith. (This was to
have been the beginning of "the loud cry" and the sounding
of the angel of Revelation 18. (R&H, Nov. 22, 1892.)
||Jewish State proposed; first Zionist
Congress in Basel, Switzerland.
||God revealed how He viewed the Church's
reaction to the 1888 Message: "All the universe of heaven witnessed
the disgraceful treatment of Jesus Christ, represented by the Holy
Spirit. Had Christ been before them, they would have treated Him
in a manner similar to that which the Jews treated Christ."
Jan. 16, 1896 (Series A,.#6, p. 20)
||Letter to P. T. Magan - "We may
have to remain here in this world because of insubordination many
more years as did the children of Israel."
||God's evaluation and counsel following
the General Conference session in Oakland, California - "Unless
the church, which is
now being leavened with her own backsliding, shall repent
and be converted..." (8T:250)
||First World Conference on Faith &
||- "Mussolini and Gasparri Sign
Historic Roman Pact" "Heal Wound of Many Years" (Headlines
of San Francisco Chronicle, Feb. 12)
||New Statement of Beliefs placed in
SDA Yearbook. Omitted statement on purpose of prophecy and
phrase designating the Papacy as the "man of sin."
State of Israel created in Palestine; World Council
of Churches formed.
||Two Missionaries to Africa give God's
call for Denominational Repentance.
||SDA-Evangelical Conferences. Fundamental
Beliefs denied and compromised.
Questions on Doctrine
|Israeli armies take Old Jerusalem and
restore Jewish sovereignty.
||Andrews University professor appointed
to the Faith and Order Commission of the World
Council of Churches; major entry into the Wall Street Stock Market;
Liberal element in the
Church gains recognition and functions as Association of Adventist
Forums publishing Spectrum.
The closing period of the "Times of the Gentiles
(Nations)" begins. Could be compared to "the last week"
of the 70 weeks of Daniel 9 in the history of the Jewish Church.
||Movement of Destiny published
with official blessing of both Robert H. Pierson and Neal C. Wilson.
||A gold medallion - a symbol of the
SDA Church placed in the hands of Pope Paul VI by B. B. Beach.
||Pope welcomed to the White House with
"hand-clasp" by President Jimmy Carter (October 6)
||Annual Council (October 9-17) approves
an Andrews University prepared Statement of
Beliefs and recommends it to the General Conference to convene at
Dallas, Texas, in 1980.
||The Knesset of Israel voted to move
the seat of government from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
||General Conference in Dallas voted
new (apostate) Statement
of Beliefs. (April 25)
The closing period of the "Times of the Gentiles
(Nations)" ended with the government of Israel fully functioning
from Jerusalem. The apostasy of the Church in its official renunciation
of the trust bestowed upon her was complete. The hour and the end had
as listed below:
1 -- OUR
FIRM FOUNDATION -- IMMINENCE
OF CHRIST'S SECOND COMING -- p.231
2 -- 20th Century Bible Course -- Lesson
5 -- TIME RUNNING
OUT -- SCRIPTURE READING: MATTHEW 24 (NT 25, 26 [18, 19])
3 -- "KNOWING
THE TIME" -- CHRIST OF THE REVELATION
-- p.71, 72 --
Myers' Finance & Energy -- July
4, 1974, POBox 5531, Station A, Calgary, Alberta, Canada T2H
1X9 -- LET THE TRUTH BE TOLD -- Gold vs. Paper - Not a Battle - But
a War --
4b -- Consumer Price Index - Base Period
1967 = 100 - Source: Dept. of Labor -- Newsweek June 19,
1978, p. 21 --
5 -- "The Coming King" by James Edson White
-- Pacific Press Publishing Company, Oakland Cal., San Fransisco,
New York, Kansas City, 1898, p. 98
Exhibit 6 --
The Pope in America --
Oct. 15, 1979
It Was "Woo-hoo-woo" -- And a guitar, a white rosary,
a quilting bee, an offering of zucchini
... on the White House lawn: "God blessed America by sending you
to us." ...
In brilliant sunlight on the North Lawn, a President
welcomes a Pope to the White House for the first time.
webmaster note: Text
found at: http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,916920-1,00.html.
Picture found at: http://www.usnews.com/usnews/news/articles/060716/16carter_eye.htm.
Exhibit 7a -- UNITED
NATIONS - SECURITY C0UNCIL, Distr. GENERAL- s/14032,
30 June 1980 - ORIGINAL: ENGLISH/FRENCH -- NOTE
BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE SECURITY COUNCIL -- s/14032, English, Annex
I, Page 1 --
Exhibit 7b --
Same as 7a -- Page 3 --
8 -- APPENDIX
II -- Letter to: The
Camp David, Thurmont, Maryland, 17 September 1978 - From:
Menachem Begin --
III -- BASIC LAW: JERUSALEM, CAPITAL OF ISRAEL, 5740-1980
- July 30, 1980 --
9 -- L'OSSERVATORE
ROMANO - Weekly Edition,
Page 6 - 30 April 1984 -- APOSTOLIC
LETTER OF JOHN PAUL II --
ANNO -- JOHN PAUL II,
SUPREME PONTIFF, APOSTOLIC LETTER TO THE BISHOPS, PRIESTS, RELIGIOUS
FAMILIES AND FAITHFUL ON THE CITY OF JERUSALEM, THE SACRED PATRIMONY
OF ALL BELIEVERS, AND THE DESIRED MEETING PLACE OF PEACE FOR THE PEOPLES
OF THE MIDDLE EAST --
10 -- Letter
to: Mr. M. Ireland, Box
105 Steiner Road, Valencia, Pa. 16059 USA -
From: 159, ROUTE DE FERNEY, 1211 GENEVA 20,TELEPHONE:
(022) 333400, TELEX: 23423 OIK CH, CABLE: OIKOUMENE GINI --
WORLD COUNCIL OF CHURCHES, PROGRAMME UNIT ON FAITH AND WITNESS,
Commission on Faith and Order -- GPM/aw, 27th March,
1974 - Gerald F. Moede. --