Tuesday, December 27, 2016

The Miracle Wheat Story - Part 3

The following is also an extract from the booklet entitled:
A Great Battle in the Ecclesiastical Heavens
by J. F. Rutherford, 1915
The first section is from pages 44-59:
CHARACTER WITNESSES
It is the rule, upon the trial of a case, to introduce testimony as to the character and standing of the parties and of material witnesses, for the purpose of affecting the credibility of the witnesses on the guilt or innocence of the party charged with wrongdoing.
"THE EAGLE" A WILLING TOOL
One of the star witnesses in this controversy, one that is always energetic and a more than willing instrument of the Preachers’ Unholy Alliance, is the Brooklyn Eagle. It is not our purpose herein to assume the position of judging, but the reader will note with interest the opinion expressed by The New York American concerning the standing of the Brooklyn Eagle.
For some days the New York newspapers have been exposing a scheme engineered by ex-Senator Wm. H. Reynolds and associates to defraud the City of New York out of a large amount of property, and men prominent with the Brooklyn Eagle have been linked up with this matter, according to the daily press.
Senator Reynolds is notorious in the City of New York as a promoter of such schemes. The New York American, one of the best-known papers in the United States, on April 2, 1915, editorially said:
ITS TALONS CAUGHT
"Commenting upon the extraordinary zeal manifested by the Brooklyn Daily Eagle in the defense of the Marginal Railway scheme engineered by William H. Reynolds and associates, The American yesterday expressed these opinions: "‘The code of honor of newspapers should be, and usually is, as high as the code of honor of judges. That code forbids a newspaper man to have any private interest in any public bill he advocates or approves.
"‘The editors and directors of the Brooklyn Daily Eagle are debarred, under this rule, from advocacy of any of the many speculative schemes which ex-Senator Reynolds and his Realty Associates are endeavoring to foist upon the taxpayers of New York through a too easy Board of Estimate.
"‘We understand that The Eagle is promoting a mass meeting to push these schemes.’" Continuing The American said: "The American did not mention the Marginal Railway grab, although The Eagle is now active in promoting it. That is only one, though for the moment the most prominent, of Senator Reynolds’ speculative schemes. As to the interest of persons connected with The Eagle in the series of interwoven Reynolds enterprises, the following facts drawn from the Directory of Directors are instructive: "George F. Dobson appears in that directory as MANAGING EDITOR OF THE EAGLE. He is listed also as director in the Estates of Long Beach, of WHICH MR. REYNOLDS IS PRESIDENT AND DIRECTOR.
"Mr. Dobson is secretary and treasurer of the Hanover Theatre Company, OF WHICH REYNOLDS IS DIRECTOR. He is secretary, treasurer and director of the Laurelton Land Company, OF WHICH REYNOLDS IS PRESIDENT AND DIRECTOR. He is secretary and director of the Metropolitan Jockey Club, OF WHICH REYNOLDS IS PRESIDENT AND DIRECTOR. And he is PRESIDENT AND DIRECTOR OF THE HARWAY IMPROVEMENT COMPANY, WHICH IS INVOLVED IN THE REALTY TRANSACTIONS COMPREHENDED IN A REYNOLDS WATER-FRONT GRAB.
"Mr. Dobson, for many years The Eagle’s managing editor, and now its editorial writer, hardly appears as an unbiased judge of the real estate operations of Senator W.H. Reynolds.
"Again, the Bush Terminal Company is vitally interested in the Marginal Railway project, standing to profit largely if the deal is consummated. Irving T. Bush, the president, is a director in the Estates of Long Beach; Frank Bailey, director, is president of the Realty Associates, an organization already involved in real estate transactions with the city, and of three Reynolds companies besides. ASSOCIATED WITH THESE PARTNERS OF SENATOR REYNOLDS AS A DIRECTOR IN THE BUSH TERMINAL COMPANY WE FIND WILLIAM N. DYKMAN, DIRECTOR OF THE ‘BROOKLYN EAGLE.’ "And finally, in the Kings County Register’s Office, in section 21, of liber 19, page 124, appears the name of WILLIAM V.
HESTER, SECRETARY AND TREASURER OF THE ‘BROOKLYN EAGLE,’ along with those of other political and real estate speculators, as a guarantor on a certain $50,000 bond given by the HARWAY IMPROVEMENT COMPANY, WHICH IS DIRECTLY AND LARGELY INTERESTED IN A REYNOLDS WATER-FRONT GRAB RECENTLY EXPOSED AND DEFEATED BY PUBLICITY."
The Brooklyn Eagle is an adept in the practice of the old scheme of throwing stones at some innocent person who is in the public eye, thereby hoping to divert the attention of the people from its own wrongful schemes.
These matters are worthy of consideration in determining the weight and credibility of the testimony given by it.
As to the character of the various ministers allied in this persecution of Pastor Russell, and the weight to be given to their testimony, we refer the reader to the APPENDIX. "By their fruits ye shall know them." Careful reading of the parallel columns of the pointed Scriptural quotations set forth in the APPENDIX will enable the reader to properly weigh the testimony of the parties hereto and the credibility to which they are entitled.
VIRGINIA’S GOVERNOR SPEAKS
Mr. K.B. Stoner, of Fincastle, Botetourt County, Va., a witness on behalf of Pastor Russell in his libel case vs. the Brooklyn Eagle, testified that in 1904 he discovered the original stalk of wheat which he afterwards named "Miracle Wheat," growing in his garden; that it matured 142 heads all grown from one grain, He further said, "A good many names were suggested and I finally adopted the name ‘Miracle’ Wheat (fol. 73-81)." In answer to a question as to who suggested the name, Mr. Stoner replied, "I never saw Pastor Russell in my life until this morning, and never had any correspondence with him in any way. I had no suggestion from him at all; whoever named it (the wheat) was some person connected with me who was interested in the wheat" (fol. 82—Court Record). Mr. Stoner sold this wheat at $1.25 per lb., or $75 per bushel (fol. 162).
As to the character and integrity of Mr. Stoner, we publish following photographic copy of a letter signed by the Governor of Virginia:
Commonwealth of Virginia Governor’s Office Richmond
October 20, 1907.
TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN:
K.B. Stoner, of Tincastle, Botetourt county, Virginia, the originator of the new variety of wheat, is personally known to me, and I unhesitatingly testify to his character and integrity as a man. Any and all statements of fact made by him are entitled to full faith and credit.
Very respectfully, Governor of Virginia.
AN EDUCATOR’S VIEW
Prof. S. A. Ellis, Southern educator and writer, after reviewing the works of Pastor Russell, prompted by the slanderous attacks of certain designing clergymen, made a voluntary examination of each of the charges, and then wrote an editorial tribute, which we clip, as follows: I lift my pen, not in defense of any doctrine, creed or dogma, but in defense of a man, in defense of fairness, justice and righteousness. Pastor C. T. Russell, of Brooklyn, N. Y., stands out prominently as a target for the pulpit and religious press of the country today. I believe there is no one more bitterly persecuted, harshly condemned, woefully misrepresented and misunderstood than this fearless, conscientious man of God.
No infidel writer, such as Hume, Voltaire or Ingersoll, ever suffered such ruthless attack‘s as have been made upon Pastor Russell.
Whether this persecution and misrepresentation is due to prejudice or ignorance of this man’s real character and writing is not for me to say, but I believe both are elements that play a part in the widespread criticism uttered both from the pulpit and the press.
Naturally, men will resent any attack made upon the creed of their persuasion, for they hold to their religious creed and affiliations with more tenacity than they realize, until some strong mind, backed by Scripture proof, begins to uproot their doctrines by showing their inconsistencies and errors.
This is what Pastor Russell proceeds to do. The fact is, very few of us have taken the pains to examine, critically, by the light of the Divine Word the doctrines handed down to us by our fathers. This accounts for the fact that Methodist parents raise Methodist children and Baptists raise Baptist children, etc.
I am amazed beyond measure to read so many fallacious statements published regarding the character and writings o[ this man. He has been called a "gray bearded egotist," a "bigot," a "haberdasher," and many other uncomplimentary terms have been applied to him, and statements made which I know to be without foundation.
He is charged with teaching heresy. An article by a minister recently published in a religious paper, in which he gave a lengthy criticism of Mr. Russell’s writings, referring to them as heresy (apparently forgetting that there was a time when his own denominational views were considered heretical). This article not only misrepresented Mr. Russell, but showed a lack of critical comparison of his writings with the Scriptures.
Mr. Russell was further charged in the same article with denying the Atonement made by Christ between God and man. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Russell’s first sentence in his volume, entitled "The Atonement Between God and Man," is as follows: "The Atonement lies at the very foundation of the Christian religion." He sets forth the philosophy of the Ransom in such a clear, logical way as has never been done before by any other theologian, presenting such an array of Scriptures as would satisfy any fair-minded, thinking man.
His private life also has been assailed by the same class of critics. These charges also are seen to be without foundation, when we seek the origin of such reports. No one who knows anything of his labors in theological research will ever sneer at Mr. Russell. He is not to be measured by common standards.
When you look at his matchless labors, his scholarly attainments, his donations to the world, in his writings, his time, his labor and money spent for the enlightenment of others, all flippant criticism becomes contemptible and mean. Unselfish, liberal and courteous to Christians of all denominations, but fearlessly condemning, in unmeasured terms, the errors and inconsistencies in their creeds, as he sees them, Pastor Russell ranks with immortal benefactors, and is stamping his opinion on the world as no other man has done since the days of the Reformation.
PITTSBURG RESOLUTIONOn the occasion of the 30th Anniversary of his Pastorate of the Church of Pittsburgh, Pa., the following resolution commendatory of Pastor Russell was passed by unanimous vote of that body.
—————————————————
"Resolved, That in view of many years of intimate association with our esteemed Pastor in his home and evangelistic work, and especially in view of our knowledge of him as a noble man of high honor and Christian character, we do hereby gladly embrace the opportunity on this occasion of the celebration of the 30th Anniversary of his Pastorate of the Pittsburgh Congregation of Bible Students to extend our heartiest endorsement of past conduct and ministration and hereby express our sincere hope and trust that by the Lord’s providence he may be spared to minister unto us of things spiritual from the Lord’s wonderful storehouse of Truth even until he shall have finished his coarse in the Christian’s Narrow Way. Be it further "Resolved, That a copy of this Resolution be published in some appropriate form and be sent as a memento to Pastor Russell, and members of the Pittsburgh Congregation of Bible Students and members of the Brooklyn and London Tabernacles."
We, the undersigned Chairman and Secretary of the Congregation herein named, do hereby certify that the foregoing resolution was unanimously adopted by the PITTSBURGH CONGREGATION OF BIBLE STUDENTS at Carnegie Hall, N.S., Pittsburgh, Pa., on the 21st of October, 1912 A.D. at which there were about one thousand Bible Students present in celebration of the 30th Anniversary of the Pastorate of the said Charles T. Russell of said congregation.
ATTEST: R.H. Bricker W.E. Spill Secretary Chairman
NEW YORK CITY RESOLUTIONThe Congregations of Greater New York City, including Brooklyn and Manhattan, in order to express their disapproval of the many things wrongfully said against Pastor Russell by the nominal ministers and THE BROOKLYN EAGLE, and similar papers, recently passed the following resolution:
——————————————————
"Be it Resolved, By the Congregation of Associated Bible Students of Greater New York, assembled at the Brooklyn Tabernacle this 7th day of April, A.D. 1915 as follows: That now serving his 7th year as Pastor of this Congregation, we are glad to record that at no Pastoral Election has there been a vote cast against him, nor even a desire to do so.
That we express our deep appreciation of his untiring devotion faithful service, unselfish and painstaking Pastoral oversight of this Congregation.
That we recognize in him the greatest living exponent of Scriptural Truth. He has devoted his life and all his talents to proclaiming the Gospel of Christ.
That we praise God for having raised him up, and we are grateful for the opportunity of having any part with him in the service of the Lord. We are thankful to bear with him the reproaches that come upon all faithful servants of God.
That we delight to testify to the purity of his life and the sweetness of his spirit he always manifests. Ever dignified, but kind; amiable, but firm; sympathetic, yet determined; simple, yet wise; just, yet loving; he stands a tower of strength for Truth and righteousness. We find combined in him the highest elements of Christian character.
That we delight to uphold his hands in the great fight he is making to spread the Truth concerning Messiah’s Kingdom, throughout the world, and the blessings it will bring to the people.
We hereby certify that the foregoing resolution was unanimously adopted by the Congregation of ASSOCIATED BIBLE STUDENTS of GREATER NEW YORK CITY this 7th day of April, A.D.
1915.
ATTEST: J.G. K...... Dr. L.C. Work Secretary Chairman
BOARD OF ELDERSBoard of Elders of Greater New York Congregation of Associated Bible Students, which Charles T. Russell is Pastor 1. E.W. Brennessien, 2. A.I. Ritchie, 3. R.H. Hireh, 4. J.D. Wright, 5. Dr. L.C. Work, 6. H.I. Mitchel, 7. W.E. Van Amburgh, 8. W.N. Wisdom, 9. W.F. Hudgings, 10. F.F. Cook, 11. F.H. Robison, 12. I.F. Hoskins, 13. D.J. Cohen, 14. C.J. Woodworth, 15. J.F. Stephenson, 16. P.E. Thomron, 17. R.G. Jolly, 18. J.E. Gray, 19. J.G. Kuehn, 20. A.G. Burgess, 21. F.C. Detwiller, 22. H.C. Rockwell, 23. M. Sturgeon, 24. A.H. Macmillan
BOARD OF DEACONSBoard of Deacons of Greater New York Congregation of Associated Bible Students of which Charles T. Russell is Pastor 1. E.H. Herrscher, 2. F.L. Scheere, 3. Chr. J. Jetsen, 4. A. Pearson, 5. L. Mathison, 6. R. Montero, 7. L.T. Cohen, 8. C. Christides, 9. A.E. Basin, 10. S. Wasilewski, 11. E.E. Kirstein, 12. J. De Ceccea, 13. C. Ferris, 14. J. Narlian, 15. W.J. Holliser, 16. R.B. Kent, 17. G. Sholl, 18. C.G. Lippincott, 19. G.F. Herde, 20. Dr. S.A. Smith, 21. C.E. Myers, 22. J.C. Edwards, 23. L. Bamford, 24. H. Herbst, 25. R. Mitchell, 26. M. Mitchell, 27. J.A. Baeuerlein, 28. A.R. Goux, 29. T. M. Bedwin, 30. J. L. Cain, 31. J. E. Anderson, 32. C. Carlson, 33. C.A. Frailey, 34. G. Glendon, 35. C. Gindroz, 36. W.T. Baker, 37. L. Newman, 39. R.J. Martin, 40. F.W. Plaenker, 41. C.W. Hek, 42. L. Clough, 43. J.L. Mayor, 44. J.L. Cooke, 45. J. Coolidge, 46. H. Holmes, 47. J. Greaves, 48. W. Bird, 49. F. Mendel, 50. W.A. Beagle.
MORE CHARACTER WITNESSESWe here present the signed testimonials of some well-known gentlemen, residing in various parts of the United States and Canada, who have known Pastor Russell ultimately for several years, and whose testimony should far outweigh that of his enemies. Many hundreds more good men, tried and true, would gladly give similar testimony as to the good character of Pastor Russell and the high esteem in which he is held amongst the people who know him, but such would be merely cumulative, hence we limit the number:
Washington, D.C., April 3, 1915.
DEAR MR. RUTHERFORD:
It has come to my attention that you are receiving testimonials concerning Pastor Russell from a number of highly respected gentlemen in various parts of the country who have known Pastor Russell for years and who know his character to be above reproach, and who also are well acquainted with the manner in which he is regarded in their respective communities by people who know him. I beg the privilege of adding my hearty testimony in his favor. I was present at the trial of the libel case of Pastor Russell against the Washington Post and know that before that court all the charges made against him were proven untrue.
I regard Pastor Russell as a great benefactor to mankind, and to my personal knowledge he has for many years been unselfishly giving his life in faithful service.
Several years ago I became much interested in Bible study, and was anxious to find out what is the plan of God. I consulted a number of preachers, read a great deal of literature claiming to explain the Bible, but concluded that none of the explanations were satisfactory or reasonable. About the time this conclusion was reached I obtained a copy of the first volume of Studies in the Scriptures, never having seen the author or anyone who knew him. Before reading many pages of this wonderful book it became very clear that the writer understood his subject and possessed the faculty of making it plain to others desiring to understand.
I learned that he was the author of six volumes, all of which I read. After a careful reading of these books in connection with my Bible I learned for the first time that God has a harmonious plan which He is developing in the interest of mankind, just such a plan as one would expect a great and wise God would have.
I have known Pastor Russell personally for years and have had opportunity to learn of his private life and character. I candidly state that he is the cleanest and purest man with whom I have ever come in contact, and I am sure his life is entirely devoted to the Lord and his service and that he has been and is a great benefactor of mankind.
It gives me pleasure to write this letter, and you are privileged to use it in such a manner as you see fit.
W.P. Hall Brigadier General, U.S. Army.
WE HAVE KNOWN PASTOR RUSSELL
Personally and intimately for many years.
The charges made against him by certain unscrupulous enemies have no foundation in truth. They are due to jealousy, ignorance, prejudice or hatred. Pastor Russell’s life is open, clean and pure. His moral character is entirely above just reproach; his business methods fair and righteous; his teachings a blessing to mankind.
He is the greatest exponent of Biblical Truth in the world, and a mighty power for good; hence a target for the agencies of darkness and error. His teachings and pure life have made us better men, better Christians, and filled our hearts with greater love for God and other fellowmen. We take pleasure in giving this testimony.
1. A.C. Northrop, Agriculturist, Little Sioux, Ia; 2. C.H. Ward. Merchant, Cumberland, Md.: 3. R.D. Strackley, Auditor, Buffalo, N.Y.: 4. N.E. Nelson, Manufacturer, Duquesue, Pa.; 5. G.F. Wilson, Attorney, Oklahoma City, Okla.: 6. W. M. Higbee, Pomologist, Lima, O.: 7. C.H. Anderson, Merchant, Baltimore, Md.: 8. E.R. Hencks, Publisher, Philadelphia, Pa.: 9. G.L. Frese, Contractor, Dallas, Tex.: 10. H.A. Guepuer, Auditor, Boston, Mass.: 11. B.W. Ritchie, Real Estate, Palmerson, Ont.: 12. J.W. Shorney, Manufacturer, Toronto, Ont.: 13. H.M. Fitch, Sales Manager, Oakland, Cal.: 14. W.S. Scott, Contractor, Waynesburg, Pa.: 15. G. Smith, Secretary to Mayor, Tampa, Fl.: 16. S.T. Apollonio, Manufacturer, Providence, R.I.: 17. R.E. Streeter, Minister, Providence, R.I.: 18. C.E. Kerney, M.D., Dayton, O.: 19. F.P. Sherman, Accountant, Los Angeles, Cal.: 20. E.J. Pritchard, Ins. Supt., Lawrence, Mass.: 21. F.W. Manton, Manufacturer, Toronto, Ont.: 22. A.D. Vanderveer, Merchant, Yonkers, N.Y.: 23. C.N. Stem, Stockman, Chicago, Ill.: 24. J.F. Milbourne, Teacher, Elwood, Ind.: 25. A.W. Smith, Div. Engr., Columbus, O.: 26. J.H. Hoeveler, Trav. Rep., St. Louis, Mo.
Portraits of Other Prominent Business Men Who Participated in the Above Testimonial Will Be Found on Pages 32 and 33.
——————————————————————————————————-
PASTOR RUSSELL REGARDED BY OTHERS—HOW?
In October, 1911, Pastor Russell delivered a lecture at Motherwell, Scotland. On that occasion Professor David Dall, a noted Mental Scientist of the British Institute of Mental Science, for his own pleasure made a character sketch of Pastor Russell, afterward sending him a copy, thereof, which appears from the following:
PROF. DALL’S CHARACTER SKETCH
H. M. PHRENOLOGIST
Dear Pastor Russell: I take pleasure in sending you herewith a character sketch of yourself as a souvenir of your visit to Motherwell, which please accept with my best wishes.
It is a source of great satisfaction to me that you have been spared so long. I prize your worth and esteem you very highly. I earnestly hope that the best of Divine blessing may continue to descend upon you, and that our Heavenly Father may still grant you many useful and happy years.
Yours faithfully, DAVID DALL, (Of the British-Institute of Mental Science, etc. H.M. Phrenologist).
BRIEF PHRENOGRAPH OF PASTOR RUSSELL
(Taken in Town Hall, Motherwell, Scotland, October 3Oth, 1911, by Prof. David Dall, D. Ph., Mental Scientist.)
I have much pleasure in giving a sketch of the genial and fatherly head and physiognomy of Pastor Russell. He is just one of those men whose appearance, intelligence, suavity, wit, goodness of heart and soundness of head do credit to his profession. Well up in years, he has a youthful, kindly and sympathetic nature; fatherly and benign in counsel, moral and spiritual in his influence. In religion his "doxy" is broadened by the effulgent light of Bible study. His temperamental development is very even. If there is a predominance of either, it is found in the motive, which supports an intense energy of mind that cannot dream life away, but must be practical.
I find the head of Pastor Russell to be a large one, and the brain gifted with an uncommon degree of activity. A full basilar region is accompanied by the powerful endowment of the moral, intellectual and spiritual natures. His physiognomy gives a large face, a large, broad nose with ample nostrils, large mouth and chin—all that the face can indicate of a powerful constitution he has. The animal vital nature, as a whole, is amply developed; his head also is broad, which indicates general force of mind, strength of feeling and stamina of character. His eyes are large and stand out fully, which indicates a communicative disposition.
Benevolence is a leading faculty, manifesting itself in liberality of sentiment to all mankind, deep desire for the welfare of others, combining warmth of sympathy with rare simplicity of purpose. His perceptive region, as a whole, is exceedingly active, an endowment rendering his range of observation extraordinary; while his memory of faces and forms is marvelous, as is also his power to analyze, compare and draw rapid inferences. Here is a mind able to steel itself against difficulty or attack, yet full of gentleness and amiability. An intense sense of duty, together with the conviction that each moment is precious and of important value, seems to pervade his entire nature. In him dwells the soul of a patient, charitable, but equally determined reformer—a practical mind, seeing far ahead, possessing large stores of philanthropy, discernment, judgment, talent and efficiency, giving him gifts as a teacher, yet also prompting him to natural desire after self-improvement.
His natural refinement, taste and imagination, with large language, qualify him to express himself in a free, easy, graceful style, enabling him to present many unpleasant truths in a pleasing and acceptable manner.
As a preacher of the Gospel, his services have found a wide acceptance. As a lecturer he is especially successful. He is not a violent or enthusiastic orator. He is an effective, quiet, illustrative speaker—arresting and riveting the attention of children as well as adults. The young find in him a "guide, philosopher and friend"—the old a sage counselor whose thoughts are tinctured by experience and perfected by principle. Under such a mentor souls grow and minds expand, observation becomes keener and the perceptions sharper. He has great magnetic force, is full of electricity, and consequently he imparts life and vivacity to every word he utters, whether in public or private.
Pastor Russell impresses and controls the minds of his hearers without making an effort to do so, for his utterances are like sparks that kindle a fire in the souls of those who listen to him.
—————————————————
PROF. C. PIAZZI SMYTH’S LETTER OF COMMENDATION.
Mr. William M. Wright, of Pittsburgh, learning that Pastor Russell was preparing a chapter of one of his books treating the Great Pyramid of Egypt, procured a copy of the manuscript and mailed it to Prof. C. Piazzi Smyth, F.R.S.E., F.R.A.S., ex-Astronomer Royal of Scotland. Prof. Smyth’s reply follows and is self-explanatory:
Clova, Ripon, England, Dec. 21, 1890.
Wm. M. Wright, Esq., DEAR SIR:—I have been rather longer than I could have wished in looking over the MS. of your friend, C. T. Russell of Allegheny, Pa., but I have now completed a pretty careful examination, word by word. And that was the least I could do, when you so kindly took the pains to send it with such care between boards by registered parcel, with every page flat, and indited by the typewriter in place of the hand.
At first I could only find slips of the said typewriter, but as I progressed through the pages the powers, the specialties and the originalities of the Author came out magnificently; and there were not a few passages I should have been glad to take a copy of for quotation, with name, in the next possible edition of my own Pyramid book. But, of course, I did nothing of that sort, and shall wait with perfect patience and in most thankful mood of mind for when the author of Millennial Dawn shall choose his own time for publishing.
So I merely remark here that he is both good and new in much that he says on the chronology of various parts of the Pyramid, especially the First Ascending Passage and its granite plug; on the Grand Gallery, as illustrating the Lord’s life; on the parallelisms between the King’s Chamber and its granite, against the Tabernacle and its gold; and generally on the confirmations or close agreements between Scripture and the Great Pyramid, well commented on.
In the meanwhile, it seems that I am indebted to you for your kind gift long ago of the first two volumes of Millennial Dawn.
I did not at the time get further than the first half of the first volume, finding the matter, as I thought, not quite so new as I had expected. But after having profited, as I hope, so much by a thorough reading of this advanced Pyramid chapter of the third volume, I must take up the first two volumes again, de novo.
The parcel will go back between its boards, registered. I remain, with many thanks,
Yours respectfully, C. Piazzi Smyth.
——————————————————————————————————-
A MINISTER’S OPINION.
The Paxton, Illinois, Daily Record recently published the following letter addressed to that paper by Rev. W. S. Garlough, Pastor of Christian Church, Bloomington, Illinois: "I have read a number of articles in the Christian Standard during the past few months concerning Millennial Dawnism as taught by Pastor Russell. We have all heard the criticism of the Pilgrim Fathers, how, having left their own country and endured all sorts of hardships for the sake of religious freedom, they themselves became the worst of bigots and persecutors of those who later disagreed with them. The treatment accorded Pastor Russell by the disciples of Christ is very similar to the actions of those early fathers. Since reading Pastor Russell’s Studies in the Scriptures (the first and fifth volumes more than once), I have read all the articles and tracts against his teachings I could find. In not a single instance does the writer reply in the same Christian spirit which characterizes Pastor Russell’s writings. In some instances the writer resorted to the only weapon left to the man without an argument—ridicule.
Others either willingly misrepresent his teachings or do not know what he does teach. As a rule they do not touch upon the real subject matter of his Studies, but attack some minor subject that Russell himself would not hold as a matter of faith, but as being of a more or less speculative character.
"To my mind Pastor Russell presents the most Scriptural, clear and soul-satisfying conception of the person of Jesus I have ever heard or read. The same is true of Man, his Creation, his Experience with Sin, God’s Plan for his Redemption, the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and Man’s Future Destiny. Now, if any good brother feels that Pastor Russell’s books are doing the Church of Christ harm let him read his books (all six Studies) carefully, prayerfully, once, twice or a dozen times, if it need be, until he knows he has the author’s thought, challenging every doctrinal thought until it is proven by the Open Book, then just as carefully, prayerfully, and with the Christian spirit shown by Pastor Russell, let him take up his task, and in a logical, Scriptural way, step by step, show his brethren that the teaching of Pastor Russell is incorrect. Then will he have done something worth while. But so long as Pastor Russell is attacked in the present manner no one who has read his Studies will be convinced of the error therein, if error there be. Let no brother deceive himself into thinking that he can successfully thwart the teaching of the six volumes of Scripture Studies in a few articles in the Christian Standard, or even in a tract such as Haldeman’s and others.
"One thing Pastor Russell’s books will do, if carefully read by any earnest, thoughtful Christian, is that they will promote Bible study more and more. The reader will proportionately lose his interest in worldly things. It will not be necessary to preach to him that he should not go to the theatre, play cards, or dance, for he will have no desire to do those things, as well as many other things in which most Christian people indulge. It will not be necessary to solicit money from him for the Lord’s work; it will be forthcoming without solicitation. It would seem that until some brother is able to present the Gospel and provide ‘meat in due season’ that does this work as well as Russell’s Studies in the Scriptures it might be well to look inward for the beam, not outward for the mote, and let his Studies continue to do that which most preachers admit they are not able to accomplish. Give Pastor Russell a square deal!
"W. S. GARLOUGH, Pastor Christian Church, Bloomington, Ill."
——————————————————————————————————-
Another Minister’s View
Copy of a letter sent to Rev. Moorehead, author of a book attacking Pastor Russell and his doctrines, comes to our attention. We have not learned if it received a reply. The spirit of the letter is kind and moderate, hence we publish it.
It is in marked contrast with the various slanderous attacks made upon Pastor Russell by his several ministerial enemies.
The letter follows:
Rev. William G. Moorehead, D.D.
Dear Dr. Moorehead:
I read some time ago your article in the seventh volume of Fundamentals on the teachings of Mr. C. T. Russell. I felt like writing you at that time but did not. Recently I read the summary of your article in one of my religious papers and have had an increasing impression to write you. I hesitate to do so because of the high regard I have always had for you as one of my teachers of twenty years ago, and also because of the high esteem in which you are held in the company o[ Biblical expositors and Christian workers in general. Yet I feel also that in the interest of truth and fairness your article should have some attention.
I feel that this article from your pen is unworthy of a man like you. I cannot understand why such a careful student as yourself should make statements such as you make in this article, when they are so manifestly and greatly in error.
In addition to reading five of the six volumes of his "Studies" carefully, and the sixth volume in part, I have also read many other pamphlets, magazine articles and sermons of Pastor Russell, and also every criticism I have found or heard of in opposition to his teachings. I was one of his critics for about fifteen years, and I based my criticisms upon reading about half of one chapter of one of his books. A few years ago it occurred to me that I might not understand his full thought, so I took time to inform myself on the subject I had been criticizing, and when I obtained more information I became an admirer of his work, though I do not agree with him in all his conclusions. I have reached the conclusion concerning the authors of the criticisms that I have read that they do not know any more about Pastor Russell’s teachings than I did in the days when I was so liberal with my condemnation. They all remind me of the testimony of the two witnesses who offered testimony before the Jewish council when Jesus was on trial. They said, "We heard him say: ‘I will destroy this temple that is made with hands, and within three days I will build another made without hands."‘ Now Jesus had said something like that—though essentially’ different. These critics seem to have read Pastor Russell’s works with the same methods and motives that Thomas Paine, Robert Ingersoll and others of their class read the Scriptures and criticized them. This seems very unfortunate since it has been done by men who have been eminent for Christian character and leaders of Christian thought.
Coming now to your article: I cannot take up all the mistakes you have made in this, but will confine myself to those lying on the surface. In the opening you assure us that in the series there are "six rather bulky volumes, comprising in all some two thousand pages." On page 123 you speak of "a careful reading of these volumes," so we conclude that you have read them all carefully. (This is what you should have done before putting yourself on record in criticism of them.) I note that in your reference to and quotations from these books you confine yourself to the first three volumes, and chiefly to the first two. I note also that you quote a single sentence, or part of a paragraph, giving only a partial presentation of the author’s thought, and then proceed to criticize it. This is a most unfair method. It reminds me of an article I read a few years ago in which the writer was opposing the doctrine of the total depravity of man, and as a proof text he quoted Joh 9:3, "Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents," and said Jesus taught that here were at least three persons who had never sinned. Your method with Pastor Russell is identical.
Under the heading, "Ninth Error," in your article, you say: "One of these, the ninth error, essential and fundamental in Christianity, is the person and work of the Holy Spirit. There is a strange and ominous silence regarding this most important subject very apparent in the writings of Pastor Russell. A careful reading of those volumes, comprising more than one thousand pages, has discovered but one solitary reference to the Spirit; it is a casual mention of the Spirit in connection with the Day of Pentecost. The statement is simply made as a historic fact, or rather as an event which marks a stage in the development of the Christian Church. Not one word of teaching has the writer found in Pastor Russell’s works as to the distinct personality of the Spirit, or as to His supreme agency in the salvation of sinners."
Now I must say frankly, though courteously, that I cannot understand how, or why, a man with your record for accuracy could be so careless or dishonest as to make such a statement.
In your opening statement you say, "There are six volumes of two thousand pages;" and here you say that you have given these volumes a careful reading, and count but ONE thousand pages, and then you make a bold and erroneous statement—that the author ignores the Holy Spirit! A judge would not think of rendering a verdict with only half the evidence in, but you speak boldly in condemnation of Pastor Russell when you are only half way through his books. Now, if you have given these volumes a "careful reading," I do not see how you missed in the fifth volume, pages 163 to 300, where the author gives ONE HUNDRED AND THIRTY-SEVEN PAGES to a full presentation of the person and work of the Holy Spirit, in connection with the redemption of the race of man. How can you explain this?
It is true that Pastor Russell may teach some things concerning the Holy Spirit that you will not agree with, but he does not ignore the Spirit. You say he does. It is evident that in making this criticism you were careless, to say the least, and this should make those who are seeking the Truth very cautious about accepting your statements without verification.
Another mistake which lies on the surface in your article is found on page 125, where, in reference to Pastor Russell’s lecture on the subject of "To Hell and Back," you say: "Crowds have listened with no little satisfaction to his assertions that there is no hell, no eternal punishment, no hopelessness after death." Now I have not heard Pastor Russell speak at any time, nor have I read this particular lecture, but if he in this lecture teaches that there is no hell, and no punishment for the finally impenitent, then he in this lecture flatly contradicts what is very clear in all his writings. I have never read an expositor who speaks with more clearness and earnestness of the eternal punishment to be meted out to the finally impenitent. It is true that he does not believe in a literal lake of fire of burning brimstone and that men are eternally tortured in this, but in this he is not out of harmony with thousands of other good, orthodox teachers.
Now, in closing, I want to say that you need have no concern about one of your pupils following Pastor Russell. I have his books in my library and consult them freely, as I do every other good expositor I can find, and afford to buy. I have passed beyond the early stage of the disciples who wanted to forbid some to teach or cast out devils because they "follow not US." I have received unlimited aid from you, and also from Pastor Russell. I do not feel like saying with you that he is "being used of the evil one to subvert the Truth of God." My church officials still regard me as sufficiently orthodox that they can go to sleep and allow me to continue preaching to the congregation.
With kindest regards for you and highest appreciation of the help I have received from you, I am,
Yours in His service, (REV.) T. S. THOMPSON—N. Dak, Secretary Samaritan Institute.

Continued in Part 4

Return to Part 1 * Part 2

No comments:

Post a Comment