Saturday, December 3, 2016

The Eagle's Distortions Concerning Russell

The brooklyneagle.com site displayed the original Eagle's distortions concerning Russell and his ministry in the form of "This Day in History" stories. Since we first presented this matter, evidently the pages have been removed that refer to Russell.
The familiar claim was presented that Charles Taze Russell was the founder of the Jehovah's Witnesses. Most Bible Students know that the Jehovah's Witnesses organization was not founded by Charles Taze Russell. He did not believe in such an organization, nor did he believe in its teachings. He preached a Good News that is almost the opposite of that preached by the Jehovah's Witnesses. Indeed, Russell preached against similar organizations, and he also preached against similar "gospels" as the JWs preach. He certainly was not the founder of that which he in which he did not believe, and of which he preached against. The Jehovah's Witnesses organization was formed after Russell died by Joseph Rutherford, who, by means of deceit and legal trickery, gained control of the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society, and used that legal entity as a basis to form a new organization which he later called "Jehovah's Witnesses".  Rutherford led his followers into denial of the central teachings of Russell, especially the "ransom for all". Rutherford denied that Jesus' ransom sacrifice will benefit all who are dying in Adam.
Russell and his associates never called themselves "Russellites"; this was a name given them by others, not a name that they called themselves. The Bible Students still exist today totally separate from the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society, and the Jehovah's Witnesses.
The only shares that anyone owned of the WTS were "voting shares"; no capital stock was ever issued to anyone, not to Russell or anyone else. However, for each contribution of $10.00 any contributor was entitled to one voting share. By 1915 there were nearly two hundred thousand shares, and as it was written in 1915, though "it would be an easy matter to elect some other man as president, there never has been cast a vote against Pastor Russell."
The false statements concerning Russell's owning 90% or 99% (We have seen different alleged percentages given by different authors) of the shares of the Watch Tower corporation appear to be based on Russell's use of a non-incorporated company called "United States Investment Company". Some use the term "holding company" as related to the United States Investment Company, but such terminology is misleading. This company was formed as a limited partnership by Russell around 1896 in Pennsylvania in which Russell put up the money for and capital was recorded in his name and two others. This may be where the idea of Russell owning 90% (or some other percentage) of the Watch Tower Society has come from, although this company was not the Watch Tower Society, nor was it even a corporation. Russell evidently formed this company because some had objected to the Watch Tower Society's receiving and selling real estate and other items, so this "company" had been formed for that purpose, to take care of this in a business manner totally separate from the Watch Tower Society. Of course, this made it appear at least on paper that Russell had 90% interest in any property and assets owned by this company so his opponents evidently saw this as reason to promote all kinds of wild speculations and false accusations, which evidently became twisted to what is stated in the Eagle story. In truth any profits that came from business activities of this company went directly to the Watch Tower Society. No one was receiving any secret profit from this company. Nevertheless, this company had nothing at all to do with the sale of "Miracle Wheat", nor was this company a "holding company" for all monies of the Watch Tower Society.
The site presents the same incorrect information originally spread by the Eagle concerning Russell and Miracle Wheat. The full, true story concerning Miracle Wheat may be found at:
http://ctr.rlbible.com/?cat=46
No charge of incest, child molestation or any other sexual immorality, was ever brought into any court against Russell. Russell's wife did make a lot of insinuations, and hearsay statements supposedly said to Mrs. Russell implying that he had been inappropriately intimate with a foster-daughter that Mr. Russell and his wife were caring for, but in none of the statements was there any actual charge presented of adultery, or incest. The judge overruled the admission of this testimony on the grounds that there were no proof, and also because of Mrs. Russell's statement that she was not bringing a charge of adultery against her husband, thus all of this testimony was considered irrelevant, although that did not keep the Eagle from using this and twisting it in its effort to destroy the reputation of Russell as much as possible. The Eagle seemed to be fanatic in distorting any thing that it could find concerning Russell.
Much ado is made concerning Russell's having given discourses when he did not actually give the discourse. There was only one instance we could find that Russell did not show up for a discourse for which the newspapers ran articles concerning the same discourse as though it had been presented. The circumstances was due to a storm that caused the delay of their boat to Honolulu, and the party aboard the boat became sick. The custom was, and is still practiced today, to send out a press release ahead of time so that newspapers would have a story to print as soon possible after the discourse. In that one case, however, the party did not make it to Honolulu at the time scheduled, and there was no way to cancel the press release, and the newspapers carried the story while Russell and his party were still on the boat at the time he was supposed to have given the discourse. We am sure that similar things has happened with other speakers, but no one thinks twice about it, except perhaps to find it rather amusing; The Eagle, however, in its zeal to find fault with Russell, twisted the facts so to use this as a form of attack against Russell.
It is being claimed that "millions have been attracted to" the alleged cult of Russell, despite the bad publicity. Of course, Russell did not have a 'cult' and there have never been millions that have been attracted to the teachings of Russell. The reference appears to be more related to Rutherford than Russell; Russell's message has little appeal to the carnal-minded, but Rutherford's message, which came to be almost the opposite of Russell's main message (the ransom for all), does have appeal to the carnal-minded. It is Rutherford's message, not Russell's, that has attracted millions. Although there have been some changes in the details, the JWs still teach the basic message that Rutherford gradually introduced especially from 1923 to 1938.
The above was originally published sometime before June of 2011; it has been updated and republished June 2014.

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