Two articles about Jehovah's Witnesses follow:
1 Watchtower Society Falsifies its History B J Kotwall
2 Gentile Times: When Do They End? Charles Taze Russell
Falsifies Its History
B. J. Kotwall
(Investigator 55, 1997 July)
Perhaps the most frequently repeated lie in the Watchtower Society's (WTS) publications is that from 1876 onwards – 38 years before 1914 – they forecasted that 1914 marked the START of "the conclusion of the system of things".
In support the WTS often quotes the Bible Examiner. This paper was published by one George Storrs (1796-1879) who greatly influenced Charles Russell the first president of the WTS. Russell wrote in the Bible Examiner of 1876 an article called Gentile Times: When Do They End? This article is frequently referred in WTS publications but has never been quoted in full.
We are quoting below an extract from this article to show that what WTS now says about what Russell actually wrote in 1876 is dishonest. Russell referring to the Gentile Times as a period of 2520 years wrote:At the commencement of our Christian era, 606 years of this time had passed...which deducted from 2520, would show that the seven times would end in 1914... We will ask, but not now answer, another question: If the Gentile Times end in 1914, (and there are many other and clearer evidences pointing to the same time) and we are told that it shall be with fury poured out; a time of trouble such as never was before, nor ever shall be; a day of wrath etc., how long before does the church escape? as Jesus says, "watch that ye may be accounted worthy to escape those things coming upon the world". (Bible Examiner October 1876 pp. 27-28)The fact is that the article by Russell does not and could not have referred to 1914 as the START of the "conclusion of the system of things". Russell firmly believed that "the conclusion of the system of things" (also called the "time of the end") began in 1799, and that Christ came invisibly in 1874 and that the church would "escape" before 1914. It was taught by Russell almost right up to 1914 that 1914 was going to be the END of the "system of things".
For example:We see no reason in changing the figures – nor could we change them if we would. They are, we believe, God's dates, not ours. But bear in mind that the end of 1914 is not the date for the beginning, but for the end of the time of trouble. The Watchtower July 15, 1894 p. 226Following are a few extracts from WTS's CD-ROM acclaiming or implying their sham prescience about 1914 marking the START of "the conclusion of the system of things".
...the full end of the times of the Gentiles, i.e., the full end of their lease of dominion, will be reached in A.D. 1914; and that date will be the farthest limit of the rule of imperfect men. The Time Is At Hand 1889 p. 76-77.Awake! 1973 1/22 p. 8What should be remembered is that the present leaders of the WTS have rescued only the phrase "end of the Gentile Times" from pre-1914 WTS publications as can be seen from the above quotations. What they deceitfully do not tell is that 1914 marked, in pre-1914 publications, the end of the world and the ushering in of Armageddon at that time.
Of all men used by God to prophesy, Jesus is outstanding. Based on what he said, along with the words of Daniel and John, Jehovah's witnesses pointed to the year 1914, decades in advance*, as marking the start of "the conclusion of the system of things."
*See, for example, the Bible Examiner, Vol. XXI, No. 1 (Whole No. 313), October 1876, pages 27, 28.
Awake! 1973 10/8 p. 18
So counting from 607 B.C.E. when the Gentile nations gained exclusive domination of the earth, when do those appointed times" end?
The answer is 1914. Jehovah's witnesses pointed to that year as early as 1876 in an article written by C. T Russell and published in the Bible Examiner. Thirty-eight years later that marked year of 19 14 arrived.
Yearbook 1975 p. 37
Even earlier, however, C. T Russell wrote an article entitled "Gentile Times: When Do They End?" It was published in the Bible Examiner of October 1876, and therein Russell said: "The seven times will end in A.D. 1914." He had correctly linked the Gentile Times with the seven times" mentioned in the book of Daniel. (Dan. 4:16, 23, 25, 32) True to such calculations, 1914 did mark the end of those times and the birth of God's kingdom in heaven with Christ Jesus as king. Just think of it! Jehovah granted his people that knowledge nearly four decades before those times expired.
The Watchtower 1981 2/15 p. 10
Hence, another respected authority (Harold Macmillan) adds his voice to those of numerous statesmen and historians who, in looking back, recognized the significance of the year 1914. Yet, decades before that year arrived, dedicated students of Bible prophecy were able to identify 1914 as a climactic turning point. (The "Bible Examiner," October 1876, pp. 27, 28) These Bible prophecies also reveal that the "generation" that saw the events beginning in 1914 would also see the "conclusion of the system of things." – Matt. 24:3, 7-22, 32-35.
The Watchtower 1983 5/15 p. 16
As early as in the year 1876, in an article that he submitted for publishing in The Bible Examiner, the president had pointed forward to 1914 as the date for "the times of the Gentiles" to end, with serious consequences for the whole world of mankind. (Luke 21:24, Authorized Version) Amazingly, at the time that the president announced to the Brooklyn Bethel family that the Gentile Times had ended, the first world war of all human history was in its 66th day.
Revelation – Its grand Climax At Hand! (1989) p. 105
From the mid-1870's, Jehovah's people had been anticipating that catastrophic events would start in 1914 and would mark the end of the Gentile Times.
The Watchtower 1990 10/15 p. 19
For 38 years prior to 1914, the Bible Students, as Jehovah's Witnesses were then called, pointed to that date as the year when the Gentile Times would end. What outstanding proof that is that they were true servants of Jehovah!
Our Incoming World Government (1977) p. 131
Ever since the year 1876 those who became associated with the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society and the International Bible Students Association had been publicly declaring that the Gentile Times would terminate in early autumn of 1914.
The Watchtower says:A religion that teaches lies cannot be true.
December 1, 1991 p. 7
GENTILE TIMES: WHEN DO THEY END?
BY CHAS. T. RUSSELL
[From: The Bible Examiner Vol. XXI, No.1 (Whole No. 313), October 1876, pages 27-28. Reprinted in Investigator 55, 1997 July]
"Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled." – Luke xxi. 24.
Doubtless our Lord intended to communicate to His disciples some knowledge, and possibly it was addressed more to the disciples in our day, than to the early church.
Let us then search what times the prophecy, which was in Christ, did signify. Of course, if it be one of the secret things of God, we cannot find out; but if a secret, why should Jesus mention it? If, on the contrary, it is revealed it belongs to us. Shall we guess and suppose? No: let us go to God's treasure-house; let us search the Scriptures for the key.
Jesus does not foretell its treading under foot of the Gentiles, as Rome had her foot upon them at that time. He does tell us, however, how long it will continue so, even the disciples thought "that it was he which should have DELIVERED Israel."
We believe that God has given the key. We believe He doeth nothing but he revealeth it unto His servants. Do we not find part of the key in Lev. xxvi. 27, 33? "I, even I will chastise you seven times for your sins; ...and I will bring your land into desolation...and will scatter you among the heathen." Israel did not hearken unto the Lord, but disobeyed him, and this prophecy is now being fulfilled, and has been since the days of Zedekiah, when God said, "Remove the diadem, take off the crown, ...I will overturn, overturn, overturn it, ... until He comes whose right it is, and I will give it unto Him."
Comparing these Scriptures, we learn, that God has scattered Israel for a period of seven times, or until "He comes whose right" the Government is, and puts an end to Gentile rule or governments. This gives us a clue at least, as to how long until the Jews are delivered. Further, Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, the head of gold, is recognized by God as the representative of the beast, or Gentile Governments. "A king of kings and whersoever the children of men dwell, the beasts of the field, and the fowls of the air, hath God given into his hand." Dan. ii. 38. God has taken the crown off Zedekiah and declared the Image, of which Nebuchadnezzar is the head, ruler of the world until the kingdom of God takes its place (smiting it on its feet); and, as this is the same time at which Israel is to be delivered, (for "Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled"), we here get our second clue, viz.: these two events, noted of the Scriptures of truth – "Times of Gentiles," and "Treading of Jerusalem," are parallel periods, commencing at the same time and ending at the same time; and, as in the case of Israel, their degradation was to be for seven times, so with the dominion of the Image; it lasts seven times, for, when in his pride the "Head of Gold" ignored "The God of heaven," the glory of that kingdom (which God gave him, as a representative of that Image,) departed, and it took on its beastly character, which lasts seven times. Dan. iv. 23, – and, (prefigured by the personal degradation for seven years, of Nebuchadnezzar, the representative) until the time comes when they shall acknowledge, and "give honor to the Most High, whose Kingdom is an everlasting Kingdom." Dan. iv. 34; for all the ends of the earth shall remember and turn unto the Lord when He is the Governor among the nations.
Our next question naturally, is, How long are seven times? Does God in his word, furnish us any clue from which to determine the length of that period? Yes, in Revelations we learn that three and one-half times, 42 months, and 1260 prophetic days, literal years, are the same (it has for years been so accepted by the church,) and it was so fulfilled: if three and one-half times are 1260 years, seven times would be twice as much, i.e., 2520 years. At the commencement of our Christian era, 606 years of this time had passed, (70 years captivity, and 536 from Cyrus to Christ) which deducted from 2520, would show that the seven times will end in A.D. 1914: when Jerusalem shall be delivered forever, and the Jew say of the Deliverer, "Lo, this is our God, we have waited for Him and He will save us." When Gentile Governments shall have been dashed to pieces; when God shall have poured out of his fury upon the nation, and they acknowledge him King of Kings and Lord of Lords.
But, some one will say, "If the Lord intended that we should know, He would have told us plainly and distinctly how long." But, no, brethren, He never does so. The Bible is to be a light to God’s children; – to the world, foolishness. Many of its writings are solely for our edification upon whom the ends of the world are come. As well say that God should have put the Gold on top instead of in the bowels of the earth; it would be too common; it would lose much of its value. So with the truth; but, "to you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom."
We will ask, but not now answer, another question: If the Gentile Times end in 1914, (and there are many other and clearer evidences pointing to the same time) and we are told that it shall be with fury poured out; a time of trouble such as never was before, nor ever shall be; a day of wrath, etc., how long before does the church escape? as Jesus says, "watch, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape those things coming upon the world."
Brethren, the taking by Christ of His Bride, is evidently, one of the first acts in the Judgment; for judgment must begin at the house of God.
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