Thursday, January 5, 2017

Walter Martin Misrepresents Russell

While much of what is presented is more related to historical accuracy than of accusations, the lack of research on part of Walter Martin can be seen by means of such historical inaccuracies. References in the first section are to Chapter 5 of Kingdom of the Cults. Since practically all of my books, including Jehovah of the Watchtower and Kingdom of the Cults, were destroyed in the fire at my son's house, I have obtained a new copy of Kingdom of the Cults, but not the earlier Jehovah of the Watchtower. Page numbers in the first section are to Kingdom of the Cults, 2003 edition.

The statement is made that "Jehovah’s Witnesses are, for the most part, followers of the interpretations of Charles T. Russell and J. F. Rutherford." While it is true that there some similarities related to what Russell and taught what the Jehovah's Witnesses teach, there are also some very major differences. Indeed, the authoritarian-type of organization that Rutherford created goes against one of Russell's major teachings. Likewise, their teachings regarding Armageddon are almost the very opposite of what Russell taught. The JWs deny the very basis of the atonement as Russell had presented from the Bible, and since this was the center of Russell's work, they actually deny the central doctrine that Russell started his Watch Tower to defend.
Brother is Russell is pictured as being the founder of what is now the Jehovah's Witnesses (page 29), etc. The truth is Russell was never associated with an authoritarian organization such as "Jehovah's Witnesses; see: Charles Taze Russell and Jehovah's Witnesses
The Dawn Bible Students Association and the Laymen's Home Missionary Movement are pictured as being "the true followers of Russell" (page 29). While one could appreciate and make use of the work of many servants of God, if one becomes a follower of anyone other than Christ, that one is in contradiction to what Russell himself taught.  Russell spoke of Christians as being followers of Christ many, many times, but he never once invited anyone to become followers of Russell. Thus, if one is a follower of Russell, then that person or group is in something of a self-contradiction. See Russell's own words:  http://tinyurl.com/foll-christ

Regarding the claim that Russell rejected the doctrine of eternal torment (page 29), this could be misleading, since at least from about 1870-2 onward, he was not rejecting the Bible usage of the word "torment" as based on the Greek words. He did reject man's added dogma related to eternal conscious torment. Martin's earlier, book, however, states that Russell rejected the doctrine of eternal punishment. Related to this, see:
Russell, the Bible Hell, and Eternal Punishment
The book claims that Russell "entered upon a long and varied career of denunciation aimed at "Organised Religions." (page 29) As stated, this would also be misleading. Russell himself never used the expression, "organized religions", although one will find that term used in a couple of quotes from others. Russell, however, did speak against sectarianism and authoritarianism that prevailed in various denominational organizations, as well as false teachings that may be found in such. The statement in the book appears, however, to be confusing Russell with Rutherford, as Rutherford did indeed have a lot to say about "organized religions".
http://tinyurl.com/j2jufnr
The claim is made that in 1879, Russell founded The Herald of the Morning. (page 29) This is historically incorrect. In 1879, Russell founded his magazine, then called "Zion's Watch Tower and Herald of Christ's Presence". This first issue of his magazine may be found online on many different sites, showing July, 1879, as the first issue. Russell was NOT the founder of The Herald in the Morning. That magazine was founded by Nelson Barbour several years before 1879.

CLICK HERE for issues of The Herald of the Morning

CLICK HERE for the first issue of Zion's Watch Tower 

Kingdom of the Cults leaves the impression that Russell's magazine "has grown until it has surpassed even Russell’s fondest dreams." (page 30) The problem is that The Watch Tower of Russell's day actually ceased to exist when he died. Rutherford's new Watch Tower became, in effect, almost the very opposite of what Russell's Watch Tower was. Russell's WT exercised no authority over fellow Christians; Rutherford's Watch Tower claimed authority over all Bible Students worldwide, causing the vast majority of the Bible Students worldwide to not accept Rutherford's "Jehovah's visible organization" dogma.. Russell's Watch Tower actually preached against the very "organization" that Rutherford created.
For some quotes from Russell regarding "organization", see:
Russell, Authority and Organization
What Did C. T. Russell Teach About "Organization" as Related to the Watch Tower Society?
Who Did Russell Believe to be the Only Authority in the Church?
Kingdom of the Cults makes it appear that the larger group followed Rutherford while the smaller group did not. (page 30) This was true at the beginning, but by 1928, more than 75% of the Bible Students world wide were no longer associated with Rutherford's Watch Tower. Many at the WTS headquarters and close to Brooklyn began to realize the course Rutherford was taking as early as 1917, but for most of the Bible Students it took years for them to realize that Rutherford was setting up an organization such as Russell had preached against. For instance, Morton Edgar, who had already been a well-known author among the Bible Students even in Russell's day, tried to cooperate with Rutherford until it fully became apparent what course Rutherford was taking. CLICK HERE to Edgar's response to Rutherford's "Jehovah's visible organization" dogma. CLICK HERE to see some quotes from Russell regarding organization as related to the Watch Tower Society in his day.
A quote is being given from the Brooklyn Daily Eagle (pages 30,31), as being factual. In reality what is presented is not actually factual, but rather a lot of it highly distorts the facts. It is claimed that this newspaper (evidently alone, since other newspapers of that time did not carry the alleged facts as presented by the Brooklyn Daily Eagle) is quoted so that Russell's "most devoted followers may realise the character of the man to whose teachings they have entrusted their eternal destiny." Again, anyone who is follower of Russell is actually at odds with 'Russell; likewise, anyone who entrusts his eternal destiny to Russell is also at odds with Russell.
More to follow, as time permits.
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Russell did not believe that his writings were "inspired", "infallible", or that they could take the place of the Bible; see: Russell and Infallibilty
Section 2:
The material below is from the old site; most of the links are no longer active. I am working to incorporate this above.

KC = "Kingdom of Cults" referenced is the 2003 editon.
JW = "Jehovah of the Watchtower", 1974 edition.
Russell's Alleged Bold Claim: KC page 38; JW page 24
KC, page 38, asserts that Charles Taze Russell made "the bold claim that his writings were indispensable to the study of the Bible for the Jehovah's Witnesses, and that to study the Bible apart from his inspired comments was to go into spiritual darkness. Is this true? No, this twists what Russell around to make it appear to say something that I am sure that he never intended, as can be demonstrated from the context and many other things Russell stated elsewhere. This is evidently referring to some comments Russell made in the article "Is the Reading of “Scripture Studies” Bible Study?". 
Was Russell the Founder of What is Now Jehovah's Witnesses?
The claim is made in both of Martin's books (JW, page 13; KC, page 49) that: "Charles Taze Russell was the founder of what is now known as the Jehovah's Witnesses". While it is not directly stated that Charles Taze Russell was the founder of the Jehovah's Witnesses organization, the sentence, by the way it is worded, is misleading for it certainly leaves the impression of Russell as being the founder of an organization that he did not believe in. We have written several times concerning this:
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JW, page 13,24

Did Charles Taze Russell Reject the Biblical Doctrine of Eternal Punishment? In KC, page 49, "eternal punishment" is changed to "eternal torment".
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JW, page 13; KC, page 49

Regarding the idea that Russell denounced "organized religion", see:
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HC: Page 49

Russell Founded the The Herald of the Morning in 1879?
No, The Herald of the Morning was founded by N. H. Barbour long before 1879; Russell began printing "Zion's Watch Tower and Herald of Christ's Presence" in 1879, not The Herald of the Morning. Oddly, the JW, page 13, of 1974, has this correct, but evidently it was changed in the later KC.
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Wealth Flowed to Russell Through Holding Company? HC: page 51; JW: page 15.
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Je, Page 16

Regarding "Miracle Wheat"; JW, page 16, KC pages 51,52.
Stoner's Miracle Wheat was NOT a fraud.
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JW, Page 21; HC

Regarding J. J. Ross: JW page 21-23; HC,pages 53
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Hell
Did Charles Taze Russell Deny Hell? -- JW, page 24; HC: page

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Jehovah of the Watchtower, Page 24

Did Russell Deny the Biblical doctrine of the deity of Christ?
See:

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Jehovah of the Watchtower, Page 24

Did Russell Deny the Biblical doctrine of "the Infinite Atonement"?
Actually, there is no "Biblical doctrine" of "infinite atonement" as that term is often used to mean that Jesus had to be the Supreme Being in order to make atonement for "infinite sin". Russell did believe in the Biblical atonement that, the man Christ Jesus,
See:

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Jehovah of the Watchtower, Page 24

Did Russell have no training or education to justify his interpretation of scripture?
Actually, Russell verified all conclusiond he gave by the Bible itself; the scriptures verify the teaching of the scriptures, and Russell provided a tremendous supply of scriptures to verify the conclusions given.
Regarding Russell's education, however, see:

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Jehovah of the Watchtower, Page 24

Did Russell contradict every major doctrine of the Bible?
Absolutely not! In fact, he defended the doctrines of Bible, and thereby exposed man's doctrine to be false. For instance, there is no concept of God existing as three persons ever once presented in the Bible, and yet trinitarians claim such added-on dogma is taught in the Bible. Making such a claim, however, does mean that the claim is true, no matter how much one may use the spirit of human imagination so as to read such dogma in hundreds of scriptures.

Martin and Klann rely heavily on two sources for much what they present concerning Charles Taze Russell, the first being articles from the Brookly Daily Eagle, and the second source being the writings of J. J. Ross, both of whom showed their hatred of Russell for what he was preaching by misrepresenting and distorting various things about Russell and presenting them as "facts".
Regarding claims made by the Daily Eagle, CLICK HERE
Regarding claims made by J. J. Ross, CLICK HERE
More too be added later, God willing. -- James 4:15.

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