Jezreel Letter # 7
By this you will note that we are thinking of you, that we truly intend to finish what the Lord has now started in this state. You will soon find that regardless how badly the enemies of Truth try to keep you in darkness on what is taking place, the Lord will not permit them. He will not leave you ignorant of the approaching Judgment for the Living, "the purification of the church," -- "Testimonies," Vol. 5, p. 80. He will, if you let Him, enlighten you concerning it even more than He enlightened His people on the Judgment for the Dead. We say even more, because the latter work is of far greater importance than the former. In importance there is no comparison between the two. This is so because the latter has to do with the message bearers themselves, not with those who have gone before them. Since we are in constant contact with the Lord's headquarters, we are able to give you firsthand information, not hearsay, concerning the things on which you need truthful and concrete intelligence. It is, therefore, a real privilege and pleasure to make full reply to the Ministering Brethren's general objections against the additional message ("Early Writings," p. 277), the message of the hour.
First of all, Elders, your assumption that the "Rod" publications teach something which they do not teach is very obvious. That you either have not studied for yourself and have depended upon what others have told you, or else are deliberately ignoring the issues involved, is clearly seen. Moreover, your criticism and the criticisms of those who are with you in what you are doing against the "Rod" of God, reminds me of Elder E. S. Ballenger's, Canright's, and J. I. Easterly's attempts to refute Sister White's writings, and also Sunday keepers while fighting the Sabbath Truth.
If you expect any lasting success at all, you Elders had better begin to deal with the issues involved instead of with personalities and character assassination. I am sure you believe the Bible prophets not because of what they personally were, but because of what they wrote through inspiration. Why not do the same with the "Rod"? Why do you try to judge it by gossip and hearsay? Why not tell the laity to quit following so-called good, and so-called great men? There are none good and none truly great. Why not start teaching the people of God to start following Truth Itself, emphasizing the fact that It alone is able to make them free. Hear what the Lord says about men:
"Cease ye from men, whose breath is in his nostrils: for wherein is he to be accounted of?" Isa. 2:22.
Brethren, start studying for yourselves, and if you are really a seeker of Truth, hungering and thirsting after righteousness, God will give you by His Spirit the right understanding of His Truth for this time. He will not leave you ignorant of It. His promises never fail and His enemies never win.
Though the Ministering Brethren's quibblings are childish and unworthy of attention, yet for the sake of those who are not independent thinkers, and for those who are not in a position to know the facts, I shall truthfully in the fear of God and to the best of my God-given ability make my reply to you.
The charges that Brother Houteff has a "fictitious secretary" in the E. W. Society are absolutely false. She is as real as one can be. There is nothing fictitious about her. And just as false are the accusations that the E. W. Society has pretended to have had its headquarters in another city than Waco. The Society has pretended nothing. It has openly declared that the mailing Post box, not the Society's headquarters, is in another city. You must be aware of the fact that anyone, including Brother Houteff, has the right to send and to receive mail from any Post Office he chooses. There is nothing crooked, nothing deceitful about it. And you surely must know this. No, not Brother Houteff's deeds, Elders, but rather the deeds of your own time-killing colleagues who secretly trailed after him day after day in search of clues by which falsely to accuse him, prove to be crooked and deceitful. No wise business man, moreover, will spend tens of thousands of dollars without seriously considering which Post Office will bring the best results. This is what Brother Houteff does; and this is what any sensible one would do, and this is what disturbs Truth's enemies. Since it is possible that one Post Office could not dispatch on time the loads of mail he sends out, why did you not think in that vein?
The E. W. Society's letter of July 1, 1946, reads as follows: "We cannot, of course, know why you are slanderously linking our name with that of 'The Shepherd's Rod,' but we do know that you have overstepped your bounds in publishing such a damaging statement against us in an attempt to ruin our business, and to thwart our efforts to bring to the people the very thing they need for their health and happiness!"
Here you will note, Ministering Brethren, that the letter is not trying to deny the Society's connection with "The Shepherd's Rod," but it is seriously objecting to the Denomination's slanderously associating the Society with "The Shepherd's Rod. " The question, "How readest thou?" is very pertinent here. It is time that you cease twisting and misinterpreting.
Moreover, the Denomination's threat to black list the laity for reading anything that comes to them post-marked in Waco, is nothing less than Romanism. It lost in Luther's day and it is sure to lose now.
Your attempts to deny the laity freedom to investigate for themselves and to make their own decisions is certainly gross deception, for by so doing you are denying them knowledge of the inevitable soul-consuming day -- "the great and dreadful day of the Lord," the judgment day for the living. You Elders act as if you alone are able to detect the difference between Truth and error, as if wisdom dies with you, as if the laity are all dolts; as if you are the spirits of Truth; as if you are to carry them in your arms right into the Kingdom! This is not what the Spirit of God teaches, but rather that every man be persuaded in his own mind (Rom. 14:5). Is it not your duty to tell them that "though these three men, Noah, Daniel, and Job, were in it, they should deliver but their own souls by their righteousness, saith the Lord God"? Ezek. 14:4. And if it be true that the laity are so ignorant and so devoid of the Spirit, then what good are they? And who, if not you Elders, are responsible for leaving them as stupid as that and at the same time, and contrary to what Christ says, making them believe that they are ready for the Kingdom -- that they are rich in Truth and in need of nothing more!
As the Denomination has made no progress in Truth since the death of her Heaven-called founder, it is obvious that she has nothing to boast about; that she is retrograding and is as dead spiritually as were the Jews from the time of the prophet Malachi's death to John the Baptist's appearance in the wilderness of Judea. The line of communication between her and God is cut off as it was in John's time. She can no more now serve her members "meat in due season" than could the Jews without the prophets. Her blindness to this fact, and her assumption that she is "in need of nothing" make her wound incurable. You Elders now surely plainly see that unless you now respond to God's all and instruct your flock to do so also, you will forever be not only as Spiritless as are the Protestant churches since they rejected the messages of God, but you will also have to bear the responsibilities for the lost souls of your flock as well as for your own souls. No, the "Rod" has not started to proclaim a message on Its "own individual responsibility. " It claims Inspiration for Its proclamation as well as for Its revelation.
To make bare statements that "The Shepherd's Rod" contradicts the Bible and Sister White's writings, statements that no one backs up with facts, is downright falsehood. Then, too, your habit of twisting her writings and of ignoring the plainest Bible truths for the purpose of fighting the "Rod" is an act as wicked as was the Sanhedrin's crucifying the Lord. Moreover, your forbidding the laity to come in contact with "The Shepherd's Rod" is proof positive that the "Rod" tells the Truth and that none of you can prove It wrong, but, that all of you are determined to keep the laity ignorant of It. If the "Rod" is in error prove it from the Bible, then you will not care who reads the "Rod. This is the only honest. sensible, and lasting way to deal with It. Your Pharisaical generalities, character defamations, and sowing gossip does not prove that the "Rod" is not sent of God, but that you are against It, regardless.
The Denomination for years, moreover, has been abusing the Scriptures and befuddling and misleading the Public with her need-of-nothing attitude and with her private (uninspired) interpretation of the Scriptures. For example, let us consider Revelation chapter 9, verses 16 and 17.
"And the number of the army of the horsemen were two hundred thousand thousand: and I heard the number of them. And thus I saw the horses in the vision, and them that sat on them, having breastplates of fire, and of Jacinth, and brimstone: and the heads of the horses were as the heads of lions, and out of their mouths issued fire and smoke and brimstone. " This is the picture which John gives of the 200,000,000 horses and horsemen.
Now compare Inspiration's own description of the horses and horsemen with the Denomination's illustration of them as given in "Thoughts on Daniel and the Revelation," p. 510. Why can not the Denomination in their exposition of the Trumpet use Inspiration's description of the horses and horsemen? Why did I they have to devise one of their own? The only answer that can be I given is that the Spirit's own description does not fit their uninspired interpretation. One's inability to interpret correctly without Heaven's gift of interpretation, however, is expected, and is excusable. But to say that the vision was shown to the Revelator at so great a distance, that he was unable accurately to see the kinds of heads and tails the horses had and where the fire smoke, and brimstone came from, in order to tailor the vision to accord with their interpretation of it, is not only defiance against Christ's warning concerning adding to and subtracting from the Scriptures (Rev. 22:18, 19), but it is also outright blasphemy.
Do you now see what the so-called great, "men of experience," are doing? These unscrupulous deeds condemn everybody's boast that saintly men are running the Denomination.
Now I am sure you see the reason for the name "Blasphemy" over the seven heads of the leopard-like beast (Rev. 13). And that if one head symbolizes a religious system, then they all must do the same for they are all alike save for the wound on one of them, and all are on the beast (world) at the same time.
If John could not see exactly what the horses looked like, then how could he see that all the fish in the sea died (Rev. 8:9)? And with such a self-exalting precedent for studying the Scriptures as the kind you Elders have set up, how could anyone be sure that any of the prophets saw anything right? Do you Elders not realize that such foolish and twisted interpretation of the Scriptures are Satanic attempts to undermine men's confidence In the prophets and of Chrlst's ability to correctly reveal and portray Truth to His servants? Consider how damaging the charge against Inspiration, how soul-destroying, and blasphemous against the Holy Ghost Who leads into all Truth! and how repulsive it must be to Christ, especially for coming from those who pretend to serve Him! This alone ought to be sufficient to show you that the angel (ministry) of the Laodiceans is blind and naked and in need of everything. For the sake of your life and for the lives of others, pull away from such doctrines of devils. They are anything but Truth, anything but signs of the Spirit of Prophecy at work. Ask yourselves when Turkey or any other nation ever had 200,000,000 cavalrymen! And if you still wonder why God permitted the error to creep into the church, the answer is: So that by your fostering and propagating them He may at the right time, at a time such as this, expose the workers of iniquity and prove to the laity that His church now is as badly overrun by the Devil as was the Jewish church at Christ's time, thus to awaken the honest ones and to set them free from their taskmasters and from the overflowing scourge (Isa. 28:13-15).
Still afraid of coming in contact with error! I hope you will no longer deceive yourselves that "The Shepherd s Rod" is tearing down anything that God has built up. It is here to "restore all things," not to tear them down. As for your charge, however, that the Rod" teaches that the church is Babylon, we challenge you to produce the statement.
True, the church is God's church, but those who are in charge of it are no better than the Sanhedrin in Christ's days. It is because God has supreme regard for His church that He has thus with His Truth invaded it now as He did invade the Jewish church in Christ's time, and is thus to reclaim His people by cutting down those who are unlawfully enslaving: them, teaching them doctrines of devils as already shown in the paragraphs above, and keeping them from coming in contact with Heaven's Truth for this time of crises. Do you see why the General Conference is now no more the voice of God to the people (General Conference Bulletin, 34th session, Vol. 4, Extra No. 1, April 3, 1901, p. 25, Cols. 1, 2) than was the Sanhedrins' to the Jews in Christ's time?
We plead with you brethren to cease listening to the false peace and safety cry of these misleading men who have their faith in false church prosperity. Rather, listen to what Christ is saving to the Laodiceans. Believe Him for His Word's sake and escape for your life's sake. Anoint your eyes with this Heaven-offered salve that your eyes may stay open, and thus have your name written in His book of life instead of having it in the books of men who now use the books' records only as a means of raising money to feed themselves, to fight the Truth, and to keep God's people ignorant of It, and at the same time making believe that they are Heaven's highest church authorities. No, this city (church) is not their caldron and they are not the flesh thereof. Ezek. 11:3, 11. Inspiration further declares:
". . . Those who have trusted to intellect, genius, or talent, will not then stand at the head of rank and file. They did not keep pace with the light. Those who have proved themselves unfaithful will not then be entrusted with the flock. In the last solemn work few great men will be engaged. They are self-sufficient, independent of God, and he cannot use them. The Lord has faithful servants, who in the shaking, testing time will be disclosed to view. . . ." -- "Testimonies," Vol. 5, p. 30. What! keep pace with Light by insisting that you have need of no more?
"The class who do not feel grieved over their own spiritual declension, nor mourn over the sins of others, will be left without the seal of God. The Lord commissions his messengers, the men with slaughtering weapons in their hands: 'Go ye after him through the city, and smite; let not your eye spare, neither have ye pity; slay utterly old and young, both maids and little children, and women; but come not near any man upon whom is the mark; and begin at my sanctuary. Then they began at the ancient men which were before the house.'" -- "Testimonies," Vol. 5, p. 211. I Here you see what the seal of God really is.
Arise against the abominations and now take your stand with this revival and reformation ("Testimonies, Vol. 9, p. 126), called forth by the True Witness to the Laodiceans ("Testimonies," Vol. 3, pp. 252, 253). Read "Testimonies," Vol. 3, pp. 266, 267; Ezekiel 9. Let Him now disclose you to view.
Now honestly consider Heaven's cartoon of the message for today, of its spokesmen, of their Heaven-sent directors. Then look at your poor counterfeit. Elders, you now see that this is not a game, but it is Heaven's own demand laid down on your lap now to make up your mind as to whom you will serve. If the Lord be God, then serve Him, but if Baalam, then serve him.
Sincerely your friend and brother ever to stand for Truth and righteousness though the majority forsake us, to be heroes for God -- "men wondered at." Zech. 3:8.
V. H. Jezreel, H. B. (Director of S. D. A. Layman's Movement) 5 T 80