As a corroboration of the Bible, Charles Taze Russell made a few references to the Great Pyramid of Egypt. It was his belief that Yahweh (Jehovah) had this pyramid built, and that the passages therein correspond to various features of the divine plan as revealed in the Bible. Many have sought to misrepresent his use of the pyramid in this manner, and thus, we address some of the misconceptions being spread about this matter.
We will make some quotes from various sites on the web concerning Russell and the Great Pyramid, and show how these sites are misrepresenting Russell.
On one site we find the following comment, which statement has often been reproduced in other documents, newsgroups and forums on and off the web: "Russell introduced occultism into his religion by teaching that the pyramids in Egypt are divine omens."
Let us first look at the accusation that Russell introduced occultism into "his religion". The word "occultism", as it is generally used in Christian circles, refers to secretive religious teachings that are not allowed to be revealed to any but those who have been accepted into the inner circle of the religion, with the inference of demonic influence. The term occultism is often used in connection witchcraft, astrology, seances, ouija boards, spiritism, etc. Russell's study of the Great Pyramid in connection with the Bible had nothing to do with such occultism.
Contrary to advocating occultism, Russell constantly admonished Christians to have nothing to do with such occultism. Thus he admonished:
"Resist the devil and he will flee from you" is the testimony of the Lord. This implies an assault by the Adversary. It implies that he should be resisted and can be resisted and that in the end he will flee from us, not because of arrogance or power on our part, but, as our Master said, "He hath nothing in me" [John 14:30]; so if he finds it useless to continue his assaults he will probably flee also from us to other fields of service. We remind all of our readers that whoever comes under the influence of Spiritism, Christian Science, Hypnotism or any other form of occultism is thereby endangering himself, not only for the moment, but also for the future, because the evil spirits operating through these various channels seek, some in one way and some in another, to delude, bewilder, confuse the reason and bring into subjection the minds of those with whom they have to do. Hence, any of the Lord's people who have had affiliation at any time with any of these are specially warned of liability to intrusion by these spirits. We remind all that the special channel through which they have had special success is human curiosity. We urge all of the Lord's people to restrain their curiosity and rely on the Lord's Word and have no dealings whatever with any of these occult systems. --, April 15, 1909, page 123.
Also contrary to the false accusations, Russell did not teach that "the pyramids in Egypt are divine omens." Russell's interest was in one pyramid, the Great Pyramid. His only interest in the other pyramids was to show their inferiority and differences between them and the Great Pyramid. Nowhere does Russell make reference to the Great Pyramid as some kind of divine omen, although he did claim that the Great Pyramid contains corroborations of the Bible, even as the fact that Egypt's and Israel's existence in this day are also corroborations of the Bible.
Did Russell Originally Obtain the Date 1914 From Pyramids?
One site makes this statement: "Russell got the date 1914 originally from the pyramid measurements." Another site states: "One of the strangest 'revelations' from the pyramids was his calculated date of 1914. The date was based on his measurements of the interior passageways of the pyramids." Both statements are incorrect. One can examine Russell's studies, Vol. 2 and Vol. 3, and see that the date 1914 was obtained from Biblical time prophecies and parallels. The date was not originally obtained from pyramid measurements, nor was the date based on measurements of passageways of any pyramid. It is true, however, that the Great Pyramid, and this pyramid only -- not pyramids -- does verify the date 1914, as well as many other Biblical dates. Russell did not use pyramids (plural), but he did believe that the one pyramid often referred to as "the Great Pyramid" is God's witness in Egypt.
Russell's Supposed Pyramid Date Change
The following argument, or something similar has been popping up all over the web and printed material:
One of the strangest "revelations" from the pyramids was his calculated date of 1914. The date was based on his measurements of the interior passageways of the pyramids. He said that 1914 would be the end of the world and God had revealed it to him exclusively. However, when his 1914 date for the end of the world failed, he tried to cover his tracks. The calculations were first printed in 1897 where he stated: "...this measurement is 3416 inches, symbolizing 3416 years.... This calculation shows A.D. 1874 as marking the beginning of the period of trouble...." ( Series III, p. 342, 1897 edition) Then in the 1916 edition it was changed to read: "We find it to be 3457 inches, symbolizing 3457 years....This calculation shows that the close of 1914 will be the beginning of the time of trouble...." Russell's pyramid actually grew 41 inches in 19 years!
Some use other editions, such as the 1923 edition, of Studies in the Scriptures rather than a 1916 edition. Almost always the edition presented is one dated after 1914, although the change concerning the measurement of the floor of the descending passageway first appeared in the 1905 edition, long before 1914 had come. Editions before 1905 read:
So, then, if we measure backward down the "First Ascending Passage" to its juncton with the Entrance Passage," we shall have a fixed date to mark upon the downward passage. This measure is 1542 inches, and indicates the year B. C. 1542, as the date at that point. Then measuring dowm the "Entrance Passage" from that point, to find the distance to the entrance of the Pit," representing the great trouble and destruction with which this age is to close, when evil will be overthrown from power, we find it to be 3416 inches, symbolizing 3416 years from the above date, B. c. 1542. This calculation shows A. D. 1874 as marking the beginning of the period of trouble ; for 1542 years B. c. plus 1874 years A. D. equals 3416 years. Thus the Pyramid witnesses that the close of 1874 was the chronological beginning of the time of trouble such as was not since there was a nation-no, nor ever shall be afterward. And thus it will be noted that this "Witness " fully corroborates the Bible testimony on this subject as shown by the " Parallel Dispensations " in MILLENNIAL DAWN, VOL. II., Chap. vii.
Of course, as already noted, Russell's "calculations" concerning 1914, were not based on the Great Pyramid, but on the Bible, and the above verifies this. Russell did not expect the "end of the world" in 1914, nor were the changes made concerning the measurements of the Great Pyramid because "his 1914 date for the end of the world failed, he tried to cover his tracks." This is all total fabricated nonsense. Since the above leaves out part of the full statement, we present the entire "change" with some of its context here (after the 1904 change):
So, then, if we measure backward down the "First Ascending Passage" to its junction with the "Entrance Passage," we shall have a fixed date to mark upon the downward passage. This measure is 1542 inches, and indicates the year B.C. 1542, as the date at that point. Then measuring down the "Entrance Passage" from that point, to find the distance to the entrance of the "Pit," representing the great trouble and destruction with which this age is to close, when evil will be overthrown from power, we find it to be 3457 inches, symbolizing 3457 years from the above date, B.C. 1542. This calculation shows A.D. 1915 as marking the beginning of the period of trouble; for 1542 years B.C. plus 1915 years A.D. equals 3457 years. Thus the Pyramid witnesses that the close of 1914 will be the beginning of the time of trouble such as was not since there was a nation--no, nor ever shall be afterward. And thus it will be noted that this "Witness" fully corroborates the Bible testimony on this subject, as shown by the "Parallel Dispensations" in Scripture Studies, Vol. II, Chap. VII.
Notice that Russell states the measurement ends in 1915, showing the trouble to begin there, and that this "indicated" that the time of trouble would begin in 1914. Russell, however, often referred to the October of 1914 as the beginning of the Jewish year for 1915.
Another writer makes this statement concerning the "change": "Russell 'changed' the length of the passage when the predicted date showed no promise - the passage grew 40 inches!" (This appears to no longer be found on the internet). Since the original date was 1874, the reference to the "predicted date" of 1874 becomes meaningless, since 1874 had already passed before the first edition of the book was ever written. So we are left wondering what is meant by the claim of saying that the "predicted date", which evidently was 1874 (already past), showed no promise. The author of the statement evidently wishes to confuse the reader into thinking in some vague manner that the earlier editions -- before 1914 -- were referring to 1914, and that since the predicted date of 1914 did not "show promise," then Russell extended the length of the floor of the Great Pyramid 40 inches! Notice the deception!
As already noted, the comparison as given of a 1903 edition of Vol. 3 with a 1916 or 1923 edition appears to be a desire mislead some to think that the "change" concerning the measurement was made in some date after 1914, such as 1916 or 1923, and this change was made because the earlier statement failed to come true. Some have gone so far as to state that change was made because expectations concerning 1914 failed. The change was actually made in printed editions of 1905 onward. (Mr. Russell had come to believe sometime in the year 1904 that he had erred concerning when the "time of trouble" was to begin, and made statements in that year concerning this. Russell once believed that the "time of trouble" had already begun in 1874; sometime later, but before 1904, he had begun to believe the "time of trouble was begin a few years before 1914, and that it would end in 1914; after 1904, evidently due to several lines of argument that had been presented to him by others, he came to believe that the "time of trouble" would be begin in 1914 and end some time after 1914.) The change was noted in the ZWT of September 15, 1909 [note that this was before, not after, 1914], and the following brief explanatory statement was made:
Page 342, lines 17, 18, 3416 inches, changed to, 3457 inches to agree with later accurate measurement, would seem to mark 1915. The former figures were "paper measure" from Piazzi Smith's illustration supposed to have been drawn to a scale, but found inaccurate.
Thus, the evidence shows that the "change" was made a long time before 1914, and did not have anything to do with any failed expectations concerning that date. Nor did this have anything to do with any change in either 1874 or 1914 calculations, neither of which dates are dependent on the measurements of the pyramid.
For more concerning Russell's changed viewpoint concerning the "time of trouble" as beginning in the year 1874, please CLICK HERE. This link brings up a file of various quotes from Russell concerning 1914, especially from 1904 until his death.
While Russell thought his later measurement was "accurate" in 1904, evidently neither measurement came directly from any direct measurement that had been taken in the pyramid itself, since no one had actually measured the floor of the descending passageway to its end, due to debris. Thus, both measurements would have to been calculated "paper" measurements.
Morton Edgar later stated concerning this:
You may have noted that, in his early editions of Vol. III of 'Studies in the Scriptures," in the Pyramid chapter, Brother Russell states that the length of the Descending Passage, from the junction of the Ascending Passage down to the Subterranean Chamber, is 3416 inches. But in all later editions of his third volume, since 1905, the length of this passage has been altered to the extent of 41 inches, the length now being said to be 3457 inches. Formerly the north wall of the Subterranean Chamber was said to mark the date 1874 A.D., but with the new measure of 3457 inches this date was shifted forward 41 years to 1915 A.D. No explanation is given for this change. (See, however, the short article, 'The Great Pyramid Measurements," on page 326 of 1st Nov., 1904, 'Watch Tower.")We measured this passage in 1909, having first removed from it all obstructing debris, we found that neither the earlier published length of 3416 inches, nor the later published length of 3457 inches, was correct. The true length was found to be more nearly 3385 'Pyramid" inches. (The exact length is 3384.904 'Pyramid" inches.) As will be seen, this is 31 inches less than the first of Brother Russell's figures, and 72 inches less than his later one.We, of course, immediately communicated with Brother Russell the true length of the Descending Passage. At first sight it appeared as if we would require to abandon the time-measurements of this lower part of the Pyramid's passage system, the true length being so different from what we had previously understood it to be. Yet, strange to say, instead of abandoning the time-measurements, we found that the true length of the passage established these time-measurements all the more thoroughly. Both dates, 1874 and 1914, are now seen to be indicated by the end of this Descending Passage. This indication is very exact and convincing, and goes far to establish our faith in the Great Pyramid as indeed a building of God.== Morton Edgar's Discourse: "THE GREAT PYRAMID -- Why Was It Built? Who Built It?" (About 1929)
Of course, the change in this measurement had nothing to do with the changing of any of the "dates" under consideration. There was a change in Russell's viewpoint concerning when the time of trouble was to begin and when it was to end (which he stated he did not know when it would end). This was also stated a long time before 1914 (about 1904 onward).
Nor was the change made because the date 1914 failed to bring the expected results, because the change was made at least nine years before 1914!
Some have also charged that Brother Russell was dishonest in reproducing the lengths as given by Piazza Smyth. One person states:
Charles Russell altered Prof. Smyth's diagram so that it would be appropriate to include in his book. While the measurements for the "Ascending Passage" (1542 inches) and the measurement for the "Entrance Passage" (985 inches) still appear in Russell's book, the measurement for the entire "Entrance Passage Floor" (i.e. "Entrance Passage" and "Descending Entrance Passage") does not. Prof. Smyth gives this measurement as 4446 inches. If you look at Smyth's drawing, directly under the label "Descending Entrance Passage", you will see this. That means that the measurement of the "Descending Entrance Passage"(iii) is actually 3461 inches(iv), not 3416 as Russell gave from 1891-1904, or 3457 as he gave from 1905 onward.So, why did Russell alter the diagram? I feel that the answer is because he could not support his eschatology (chronology for the last days) with the Pyramid without making it say something it did not.(v)
We were not there with Russell or Barbour when the original calculation was made, and when the change was made. Since we do not have enough information to be sure exactly what transpired to cause what appears to be discrepancies between Russell's and Smyth's calculations, all we are able to do is present a possible explanation, based on the evidence we do have. Whether our explanation is true or not, there is still no reason to ascribe a sinister motive for the removal of Smyth's figures. As to the motives of those writers who misrepresent Russell, I do not judge their motives, but leave that with God and Jesus.
We do not have all the particulars available concerning Smyth's figures or Russell's figures, as to how they were obtained. Smyth did not measure the floor or the roof down to the pit, but evidently used the measurements given by earlier authors. The measurements, given by Smyth, however, are of the roof, not the floor, since it had been impossible to measure the floor until the debris had been removed. It appears that Smyth gives 985 inches in the "entrance passage" possibly to the upper intersection point of the descending passageway. If his calculation is to the upper intersection point (north side), then simply subtracting 985 p. inches from 4446 p. inches would not give us the length of the descending entrance passage from the lower intersection point (south side), since there would be some inches between the upper intersection point and the lower intersection point that would need to be accounted for, which is not readily available from the figures given by Smyth.
Realizing this, someone probably did what Russell called a "paper measurement" of the length, using the scale as given by Smyth. Thus this earlier length given for the lower descending passage seemingly fits well with Smyth's measurements. It would mean that the lower descending passage would be 3416 pyramid inches + 44 pyramid inches (between the two intersections) + 986 pyramid inches, which equals 4446 pyramid inches. However, even assuming that the measurement of the roof to be correct, it would be a further assumption to project that measurement to the floor of the descending passageway.
We wish to emphasize here that neither Prof. Smyth nor anyone else had made any actual measurements of the floor of the descending passageway down to the pit. There was just too much debris to make any actual measurements. Morton Edgar wrote concerning this:
241 In very early times, the Descending Passage appears to have been sufficiently clear to allow of venturesome travelers making occasional visits to the Subterranean Chamber; but in 1763, Davison,1 when describing the Descending Passage, wrote: 'At the end of one hundred and thirtyone feet [from the junction of the First Ascending Passage] I found it so filled up with earth, that there was no possibility of proceeding." It remained in this condition until the year 1817, when, by the efforts of M. Caviglia, access to the Subterranean Chamber was restored; and at the same time the whole length of the Well-shaft was cleared. M. Caviglia was afterward for a short time in the employment of Col. Howard Vyse.--------------1 It was Davidson who discovered the lowermost of the five hollows or "Chambers of Construction" above the King's Chamber. Col. Howard Vyse discovered the other four -- Pars. 110-112.--------------242 M. Caviglia did not completely clear out the Descending Passage, for, twenty years afterward (in 1837), Col. Howard Vyse, in his description of the state in which he found the Great Pyramid previous to commending his extensive operations on it and the other Pyramids of Gizeh, wrote that, though open, it was 'much encumbered with stones and rubbish." This no doubt explains why he measured the passage along the roof-line, and not along the floor. When Professor C. Piazzi Smyth visited the Pyramid in 1865, the passage below its juncture with the First Ascending Passage appears to have again become so blocked with dust and large stones, that he did not visit the lower sections at all. The measurements of these parts given in his Pyramid books were derived from Col. Howard Vyse's publication, and are, unfortunately, inaccurate.From, 1923
Thus we see that Smyth's measurements were actually Vyse's measurements, which were taken along the roof-line, not along the floor. More than likely the measurement of the entrance passage would be from the entrance down to the upper intersect along the roof, not the the lower intersect as projected down to the floor. Therefore when making calculations this would have had to be considered, and thus a paper measurement of the the lower descending passage would have been needed from a point also ascertained by paper measurement from the lower intersect point along the floor with the ascending passage.
In 1904 someone asked a question concerning what appeared to be a discrepancy between Russell's figures and Smyth's figures. We present this below, as it was printed in the November 1, 1904, ZWT:
R3451 : page 326 THE GREAT PYRAMID MEASUREMENTS. ARE we quite sure of the accuracy of the measurements of the Great Pyramid's passages as given in MILLENNIAL DAWN, Vol. III.? I have seen another measurement of the downward passage (3465 inches instead of 3416 inches), said to be from Prof. Piazzi Smyth's writings, says a reader. * * *
We have no reason to question the accuracy of the figures given in DAWN III. They were all secured from Prof. Piazzi Smyth's work entitled, Our Inheritance in the Great Pyramid. Moreover the manuscript of that chapter was submitted to Prof. Smyth by a friend before it was published and no flaw in its figures was noted. The illustrations are of Prof. Smyth's preparation, too.
We remark, however, that Prof. Smyth's interest centered in the upper chambers of the Pyramid, and the passages leading upward to these. Much less care and precision are manifested in his dealings with all other parts of the Pyramid than with this. As an evidence of this note the difference in the two drawings in VOL. III. which show this downward passage and the "pit" at its terminus. In the frontispiece the lower or level portion of the downward passage is shown as running to the axis line of the Pyramid, nearly one-half the length of the "pit." The illustration showing "The Passage System" of the Pyramid (MILLENNIAL DAWN, Vol. III., page 333) shows this totally different--it shows the depressed and broken floor commencing before the vertical axis is reached. Examine the illustrations carefully and note what we refer to.
The cut of page 333 is to a scale, and, being prepared by the one Astronomer Royal of Scotland, it should be accurate, yet the figures we have given (3416 inches) reach (into the "pit" of this diagram, --to the "pit" in the frontispiece) to the vertical axis of the Pyramid. We cannot therefore see how any longer measure for the passage could be possible. Measure for yourself, using the scale given on the diagram, page 333. If you have not the proper calipers use a piece of stiff paper as your measuring line and then apply it to the scale.
At the time of the Editor's visit to the Pyramid in 1892 the downward passage was filled full of debris and evidently had been long in that condition, as only one Arab was found who had any knowledge of it. He was quite an old man who many years before had assisted Prof. Smyth. The Editor, therefore, like other measurers of recent years, could ascertain nothing new respecting the "downward passage."
Russell also noted in regard to trying to ascertain the measurement "from the entrance of the subterranean chamber or 'Pit' to the juncture of the horizontal with angling portion of the passage", (Thy Kingdom Come, page 344):
|Unfortunately we find no exact measurements of this portion of this downward passage and we are convinced that Prof. Smyth's diagrams are not sufficiently accurate to justify confidence in "paper measurements" based upon them. An unconfirmed measurement is 324 Py. inches, which measured backward would indicate about the year A.D. 1590, or "Shakespeare's day." However, we attach no weight to this suggestion.|
From this it appears that Russell knew that there could be some errors in Smyth's diagrams.
Probably as a result of the question raised in 1904, either Russell himself, or someone else did reconsider the calculations based upon other measurements and came up with a different result than Russell's earlier measurement. As a result, Russell became convinced that the later measure was accurate, and decided to make the changes in the third volume.
A very short explanation is given in the ZWT, 9/15/1909, R4477 : page 283 [Please again note that this change was made long before 1914, and had nothing to do with any failed expectations concerning 1914.]
Page 342, lines 17, 18, 3416 inches, changed to, 3457 inches to agree with later accurate measurement, would seem to mark 1915. The former figures were "paper measure" from Piazzi Smith's illustration supposed to have been drawn to a scale, but found inaccurate.
Thus it appears that Russell initially tried or had someone else try to ascertain the length from the intersect point of the descending passageway down to the the "pit" of the diagram by "paper measure", and came up with what he later considered a wrong result. Evidently in 1904 or 1905 Russell himself or someone else came up with another "paper measurement" or some other calculated measurement of some sort for the length, that would not agree at all with Smyth's overall length of the descending passageway at all. (Remember that Smyth's measurement was taken from the roof the passageway, but the desired measurement was of the floor, not the roof.) Russell became convinced that the new calculations were right, therefore he made changes in later editions of his book. Since these new measurements, thought to represent the floor measurement, would not harmonize with Smith's total length of descending passageway (the roof measurement), Russell, or one of the associates, probably believed that the figures in Smyth's diagram should not be displayed, since it would cause confusion. Mind you, this is only what we believe could possibly have transpired by what information we have on hand. We do not know for sure what transpired over 100 years ago in this matter, for we do not have much detail to go on. If anyone has any more accurate information than this, we will be glad to hear from them concerning this.
Regardless, we have no reason to believe that there was a sinister motive either for the original error or for this change. It is claimed that Russell made the change to accommodate his new viewpoint in 1904 that the time of trouble to was to begin, not end, in 1914. His new view introduced in 1904 concerning the time of trouble, however, did not necessitate that the measurement of the descending passage be changed. Russell could have changed the wording of the Volume 3 to read differently than to change the measurement, if it was only regarding his new viewpoint that had been presented in 1904. Other measurements in the Great Pyramid already pointed to 1914, so it was not necessary to produce a new measurement for that date. Thus, he could have simply reworded Volume 3 to read that the measurement leading to 1874 indicated the beginning of the harvest period, if that was the concern. Indeed, it would have been better for his chronology if the original measurement had been accurate, thus if his motive was to hide the facts, he would probably have kept the earlier measurement.
But as pointed out earlier, both measurements were later shown to be in error.
That Strange Word - Pyramidology
The word "pyramidology" evidently was evidently never used by Russell. The word itself has nothing to do with spiritualistic occultism or astrology. Nor does "ology" mean "worship" as some have implied; it rather means "study of". The word "pyramidology" originally was used in reference to study of the Great Pyramid and its relationship to the Bible, and thus its original usage had nothing to do with occult power, spiritism, etc. However, it was later used to describe a lot of beliefs (isms) that Russell did not believe, as there are a lot of beliefs out there concerning the Great Pyramid that Bible Students in general do not subscribe to, such as the "pyramid power," etc.
Some find fault with Russell by claiming that he demanded "his followers" accept his teaching concerning the Great Pyramid! This, of course, is false! Russell himself never claimed that one has to believe in the measurements of the Great Pyramid in order to be a Christian, a follower of Christ. Russell wished that no one follow him personally, but only as he led them to Christ.
Pyramid Monument and Russell's Grave
As to the pyramid monument in the center of the WT Society's cemetery plot, this was authorized for construction about three years after Russell died. Rutherford claimed that Russell is the one who had wanted it to be constructed. However, other than Rutherford's statements to that effect, and some assertions made by some others, we have not been able to verify that Russell wanted such a monument constructed, and we have doubts that he would have sought such a construction. As Bible Students have pointed out many times, Rutherford made many exaggerated and dishonest statements concerning Russell and many other things, and we suspect such to be case in this regard also.
Some have claimed that the pyramid monument is Russell's tombstone, which is not true.
Some have claimed that the term "Laodicean Messenger" that appears on the stone over Russell's grave, is a display of Russell's egotism. Actually, this term was not used by Russell, nor did he ever make the claim that he was the Laodicean Messenger, although many Bible Students had come to believe that he was the messenger (angel) referred to in Revelation. Rutherford was one of the greatest promoters of Russell as the "Laodicean Messenger" and it was evidently Rutherford who had this title placed on the tombstone.
The Cross and Crown Symbol
Some have made much ado about the cross and crown symbol and have tried to promote the idea that Russell was a Mason because they assert that Russell's cross and crown symbol is a "Masonic" symbol. The cross and crown symbol is not used by the Masons as a whole, but a symbol similar to that used by Russell is used by the Knights Templar. This organization does not represent the Masons as a whole, although one has to be a Mason, as well as claim to be a Christian, in order to belong to the Knights Templar. One does not have to claim to be a Christian to a member of the Free Masons organization, but one does have claim such to be a member of the Knights Templar; indeed, according to some reports we hae read, one has to also believe in the trinity dogma in order to be a member of the Knights Templar. As for their usage of the cross and crown, the Knights Templar claim to have adopted it from traditional church usage. This is probably where Russell also adopted it from, as we have found usage of this symbol by many church groups, including the Roman Catholic Church.
One has stated that "Russell felt the Pyramids of Egypt had prophetic significance and used them extensively in his writings." (David Reed, Answering Jehovah's Witnesses) This is misleading in three counts.
(1) Russell did not believe the "pyramids" [plural] of Egypt had prophetic significance. The only pyramid he believed to have been constructed under God's direction was the Great Pyramid. Its prophetic significance was only to corroborate what was already written in the Bible. His only interest in the other pyramids was to demonstrate the superiority of the Great Pyramid, and the differences between the Great Pyramid and the other pyramids.
(2) The second statement that could be misleading is that Russell used the pyramids 'extensively' in his writings. Russell's writings represent a tremendous amount of material -- tens of thousands of pages. Very little of what he wrote has to do with the Great Pyramid. (The greater amount of his presentations appear to have been on developing Christ-likeness, or defending the Bible and the atoning sacrifice of Jesus.) The Pyramid was only a small minor part of Russell's teachings. The Edgar Brothers probably wrote more on the Great Pyramid than any other Bible Student, although Adam Rutherford (not related to Joseph Rutherford) wrote 4 volumes and some other material (which are not generally accepted among most Bible Students). However, Bible Students, both in Russell's day as well as today, are free to accept or reject any of the teachings concerning the Great Pyramid, chronology, dates, etc. It was not until after Russell died that Joseph Rutherford began demanding that everyone had to agree with him or be consigned to the second death.
(3) The third phrase that could be misleading is "prophetic significance". It is true that Russell believed the Great Pyramid to be prophetic in the sense of corroborating the prophecies of the Bible. He did not view it to be the actual source of prophecy however. Russell did use the phrase "God's Stone Witness and Prophet" (The Time is at Hand, page 309,313); he goes on to explain that the Great Pyramid is "prophetic" in that corroborates the Bible. It probably would been better if he had not called the Great Pyramid "Prophet" since the Great Pyramid of itself cannot give us a prophecy; it only corroborates the time elements and various features of God's plan as revealed from the Bible. However, Russell wrote concerning the word "Prophet":
The Greek word rendered "prophet" signifies a "forth-teller." It might be understood to mean one who tells in advance, or foretells, or prophesies coming events; but in its general use in the New Testament the word seems to indicate one who tells forth, in the sense of proclaiming, giving public utterance to, or standing up before the people in declaration of the Lord's message. The distinction between prophets and teachers, as here used, seems to be that the former were persons of natural talent and ability for teaching the truth in a public manner, in orderly discourse, etc., while the teachers would be those possessing talent as instructors, but not necessarily in a public, or oratorical manner. The same distinctions are true today amongst the Lord's people; comparatively few have the qualifications for public speaking--for presenting an address in an orderly manner, that will be truly helpful to the hearers. Some others, who have not ability as public discoursers, have talent for presenting the truth in a less public manner, as in Bible studies, etc. -- Watch Tower, May 15, 1902, pages, 138,139.
Thus, in the above sense of the word "prophet," the Great Pyramid does "tell forth" these features and measurements, and therefore could be also said to be God's prophet in this sense. However, to say that the Great Pyramid is a prophet in the sense that it actually gives prophecy of itself would be misleading.
For more information on the Great Pyramid, see:
Great Pyramid Resource Page
Great Pyramid Resource Page
Related RL Studies