Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Sources For Russell's Imagery Requested

By Ronald R. Day, Sr.

One presented me with several requests in the comments related to a video on Youtube entitled: "Occult Theocrasy - Charles Taze Russell A Freemason." For some unknown reason I am not being permitted to respond there, so I am presenting my responses here:

"Give us the source from which Russel took the Cross and Crown (facts and few words please)"

My response:

I do not have information as to exactly "where" Brother Russell obtained artwork for his imagery, if this is what is being requested. To me, that is not as important as is why he used the imagery. I can only give you one of his statements (there are more) related to the cross and crown imagery:

The cross represents our faith in the death of Christ and our desire to walk in His steps; the crown represents the reward of glory, honor and immortality; and the wreath around the cross and crown represents the Restitution blessings coming to the world of mankind. Harvest Gleanings, Volume 3,, page 721.

"Give us the source from which Russel took the all seeing eye He used on fotodrama of creation (facts and few words)"

My response:
In his study, "The All-Seeing Eye", which was later retitled, "Divine Omniscience and Almighty Power," Brother Russell presented Psalm 139:7,9 and Psalm 34:15 (from the King James Version).

In his study, "Am I My Brother's Keeper?", Brother Russell stated:

The All-Seeing eye of our Creator keeps watch over the affairs of His creatures today as it kept watch over Abel's interests. God allowed Cain to have his way; allowed him to kill his brother; allowed the righteous to suffer; yet Cain did not escape, but was held accountable for the death of his brother. God's sentence upon him separated him from his brethren until he cried out that his punishment was greater than he could bear. And, similarly, we may be sure that the Cain class of our day will be held accountable for the willful slaying of their brother, especially to the extent that the brother despised may be a child of God. As God declared that the blood of Abel cried to Him from the ground cried for justice so the intimation of the Scriptures is that all injustice of every kind, everywhere, will bring a "just recompense of reward."

"Give us the source from which Russel took the Egipcian Sundisk (from the bible it is not because it has 2 snake heads on it and Russel did not use a new symbol but an existent one)"

The "Sun of Righteousness" imagery that Russell used did not have 2 snake heads on it, although many claim to "see" such in the curved handles of the upside down arrows pointing to the sun-circle. I have not, however, seen this exact form used by the Egyptians, or anyone else. I do not know that Russell had the artwork especially done, but as yet, I have not found the exact artwork used by anyone else, except those who are duplicating the artwork from Russell's books.

The second sentence of Russell's book, The Divine Plan of the Ages, shows what this imagery meant to Russell:

The period in which sin is permitted has been a dark night to humanity, never to be forgotten; but the glorious day of righteousness and divine favor, to be ushered in by Messiah, who, as the Sun of Righteousness, shall arise and shine fully and clearly into and upon all, bringing healing and blessing, will more than counterbalance the dreadful night of weeping, sighing, pain, sickness and death, in which the groaning creation has been so long. "Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the MORNING." Psa. 30:5

While Russell did not at this point give the scripture for "Sun of Righteousness", the term is indeed found in the Bible at Malachi 4:2. Even Fritz Springmeier realized this, but he claimed that Malachi had been influenced by the pagans. If this is true, it would mean that Malachi was a false prophet and also that Jesus was a false prophet; indeed, it would mean that entire New Testament is false.


"Give us the source from Jehovah use by Russel (use Russel words to explain the use of form Jehovah not third party)"

I am not sure what this is requesting. Like myself, Russell was never adamant about using the form "Jehovah". Russell, however, never did much in-depth study on the Holy Name, nor did he put forth a serious effort to restore the Holy Name to the Bible. I do not know of any quote I could give that would be related to the question.

Nevertheless, Russell never made any issue over how one should pronounce the Holy Name, nor do I. For instance, when he presented an article written by Rev. John Urquhart, Scotland, the author used "Yahweh", not "Jehovah", but Russell gave no objection.

On another occason, he presented a discourse by Dr. J. H. Thomas, in which Thomas used the form "Yahweh".

The comment was made:
Keep in mind Russel clearly stated he had many mason friends and that He appreciated their precious truths.

My response:

Actually, what he stated was, "In fact, some of my very dear friends are Masons, and I can appreciate that there are certain very precious truths that are held in part by our Masonic friends." ("Temple of God" sermon)

He could have said the same about his Methodist friends, his Baptist friends, his Presbyterian friends, etc. Indeed, in effect, he did say such in the same sermon:

"As Christian people, Bible Students from all denominations, it would seem that we have something in our faith that is in sympathy and harmony with each denomination, the world over. Do our Presbyterian friends speak of the election? We more. Do our Methodist friends have the doctrine of free grace? We more. Do our Baptist friends understand the importance of baptism, to some extent? We more. Do our friends of the Christian denomination, and our Congregational friends, appreciate the great privileges of individuality in church government? We more."

And then continues with the Masons:

"Do our Masonic friends understand something about the Temple, and being Knights Templars, and so on? We more."

After that he continues:

"Do our Roman Catholic and Church of England friends believe in a Universal church? We more. In other words, it would seem as though the message of God's Word has been more or less subdivided, and each denomination has taken hold of a piece of the truth, and around that bit of truth has gathered a good deal that we think is erroneous."

As many have pointed out, however, Russell seemed confused concerning the relationship of the Knights Templar to Masons. Russell appeared to have thought of the Knights Templar as being a higher order of Mason, and he assumed that all Masons professed to be Christian, and thus he thought of the Masons similar to that of a Christian denomination. The truth he saw in his conversation with the Masons was basically that of the usage of temple as designating the building of character. Russell, however, often used the word "friends" very loosely, as can be seen even in his sermon, "The Temple of God", for he spoke of "Presbyterian friends," "Methodist friends," "Baptist friends," "Congregational friends," and "Roman Catholic and Church of England friends."

Another comment was made:
Russel also told He was learning the hand grips

Before I present a quote from Russell concerning this, I believe it would beneficial that one understand by "this order", Russell was not referring to either the Bible Students association nor was he referring to the Masons. The "order" he was referring to was the church, which he believed was not limited to any denomination, sect, movement, association, etc. With this in mind, I present what Russell stated:

"So, then, I repeat what Jesus said about the terms of membership. I do not know if we are all members of this order or not. You know our order is so secret we cannot know each other always. Is not that wonderful? I find that is so with Masons also. Many Masons shake hands with me and give me what I know is their grip; they don't know me from a Mason. Something I do seems to be the same as Masons do, I don't know what it is; but they often give me all kinds of grips and I give them back, then I tell them I don't know anything about it except just a few grips that have come to me naturally. But the Lord has so arranged this matter that you and I cannot know who are the approved Masons; He alone knows; He alone knows how true and loyal we are at heart. We might put on uniforms and wear feathers – and I think there are many Masons perhaps that go around and parade who do not come up to all the high standards of Masonry either, and some of their Masonic brethren are perhaps ashamed of them. So there are many who come in and have more or less of an outward appearance of being Christians and are not such really at heart. I wonder how many of us here present have taken the first step, the first degree? I wonder how many have gone on to take the second and third degrees? I wonder how many have come into Knighthood – shall I say? – to be Knights Templar? That simply means to be very honorable in connection with this Temple service; as, for instance, to be leaders in the Church. That is getting up to one of the high degrees, to be leaders in the Church of Christ, to be Knights Templar, to be amongst those who are special functionaries in any matter pertaining of the interests of the Temple, and know most about the things of the Temple."

I do not know of any place, however, that Russell ever stated that he had a goal of learning Masonic "grips". He did state that he was, in effect, learning some of them by imitation, but without knowledge of their meaning. But to focus on the grips as such fails to realize the point that Russell was making, and that was that we do not always know who truly is a member of the church, for there are many false Christians who associate with the true Christians, and such false Christians may learn to imitate a true Christian, just as he learned to imitate the grips of the Masons, although he was not a Mason.

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