Old Paths

Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. Jeremiah 6:16

The secret of the LORD is with them that fear Him; and He will show them His covenant. Psalm 25:14


Vol. 8, No. 3    Straight and Narrow     March 1999


Papal Visit to St. Louis
by Lynnford Beachy

On January 26-27, 1999 Pope John Paul II made a pastoral visit to St. Louis, Missouri. Included in his itinerary were a youth rally, a mass, a prayer service and a motorcade in his popemobile. The 78-year-old pope was greeted by President and Mrs. Clinton in an airport hangar after his arrival in St. Louis.

The official slogan for the papal visit was taken from his Apostolic Letter, As the Third Millennium Draws Near. The slogan reads: “…to ensure that the power of salvation may be shared by all.” For those familiar with the official Catholic position on salvation, it is not difficult to see the significance of this statement. The Roman Catholic Church rigidly teaches that there is no salvation outside of the Catholic Church. The Roman Catholic Church is boldly attempting to make all people Roman Catholics. At the mass the pope “preached the parable of the shepherd pursuing a straying sheep. He clearly meant to bring a wayward USA back into his fold.” (USA Today web site, January 28, 1999)

St. Louis, a city of about 400,000 people, was swamped with more than 200,000 guests. Many thousands of people welcomed the arrival of this traveling pope. Catholics were not the only group to welcome him; Christians from many Protestant denominations held banners welcoming the pope to St. Louis.

In his evening prayer on January 27 at the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis, after the pope welcomed his Catholic brethren, he said, “I am particularly pleased that distinguished members of other Churches and Ecclesiastical Communities have joined the Catholic community of St. Louis in this Evening Prayer. With hope and confidence let us continue to work together to realize the Lord’s desire: ‘That they may all be one … that the world may believe’ (John 17:21).” In his final words at the Cathedral the pope said, “The welcome extended to me by my fellow Christians and by the members of other religious communities has been most gracious.”

The pope’s ecumenical push has been, to a large degree, successful. Most Protestant denominations can no longer be rightly called “Protestant” because they have failed to continue protesting! A. T. Jones gives a background on the use of the term “Protestant.” He states that it “came into the world with the word ‘Protest’ that was used in the Protest that was made at the Diet of Spires in Germany, April 19, 1529.

“That Protest was made against the arbitrary, unjust, and persecuting procedure of the papacy in that Diet.

“Thus the Protest in which originated the word ‘Protestant’ was against the effort of the papacy to destroy the Reformation, and was in behalf of the Reformation and its principles.” (Lessons from the Reformation, pp. 25, 26)

Today, the so-called non-Catholic churches have repudiated the principles of Protestantism. The absolute separation of church and state, once a fundamental part of the United States of America, is being repudiated by many denominations. Most Protestant churches are bridging the gap that has been made between them and the Roman Catholic Church. While the papacy today is presenting a fair face to the world, counsel written more than 100 years ago is more applicable today than ever:

“ The Roman Church now presents a fair front to the world, covering with apologies her record of horrible cruelties. She has clothed herself in Christlike garments; but she is unchanged. Every principle of the papacy that existed in past ages exists today. The doctrines devised in the darkest ages are still held. Let none deceive themselves. The papacy that Protestants are now so ready to honor is the same that ruled the world in the days of the Reformation, when men of God stood up, at the peril of their lives, to expose her iniquity. She possesses the same pride and arrogant assumption that lorded it over kings and princes, and claimed the prerogatives of God. Her spirit is no less cruel and despotic now than when she crushed out human liberty and slew the saints of the Most High.

“The papacy is just what prophecy declared that she would be, the apostasy of the latter times. 2 Thessalonians 2:3, 4. It is a part of her policy to assume the character which will best accomplish her purpose; but beneath the variable appearance of the chameleon she conceals the invariable venom of the serpent. "Faith ought not to be kept with heretics, nor persons suspected of heresy" (Lenfant, volume 1, page 516), she declares. Shall this power, whose record for a thousand years is written in the blood of the saints, be now acknowledged as a part of the church of Christ?

“It is not without reason that the claim has been put forth in Protestant countries that Catholicism differs less widely from Protestantism than in former times. There has been a change; but the change is not in the papacy. Catholicism indeed resembles much of the Protestantism that now exists, because Protestantism has so greatly degenerated since the days of the Reformers .” (The Great Controversy, p. 571)

It is not a coincidence that the pope chose to come to the United States for his pastoral visit. Nor is it a coincidence that he met with President Clinton and Vice-President Al Gore during his visit to the USA.

“The prophecy of Revelation 13 declares that the power represented by the beast with lamblike horns shall cause "the earth and them which dwell therein" to worship the papacy --there symbolized by the beast "like unto a leopard." The beast with two horns is also to say "to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast;" and, furthermore, it is to command all, "both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond," to receive the mark of the beast. Revelation 13:11-16. It has been shown that the United States is the power represented by the beast with lamblike horns, and that this prophecy will be fulfilled when the United States shall enforce Sunday observance, which Rome claims as the special acknowledgment of her supremacy.” (Ibid., pp. 578, 579)

The United States of America will unite with the papacy in enforcing religious laws. Protesting this union of church and state is the principle that started the Reformation; it is the principle that gave Protestants their name. Would to God that all the true Protestants would arise and protest against the tyranny that will come from such a union.

The papal mass held at the TWA center was the largest indoor gathering ever in the USA. During the mass, Pope John Paul II criticized the United States’ policy on the death penalty, abortion, and economic sanctions against Cuba and Iraq. He stated, “The dignity of human life must never be taken away, even in the case of someone who has done great evil. Modern society has the means of protecting itself without definitively denying criminals the chance to reform.” (Homily–January 27, 1999)

The pope’s influence upon the judicial system of the United States can be seen by Missouri’s postponement of the execution of Darrell Mease, 42, convicted of a 1988 triple homicide, until February 10. His execution had been scheduled during the time of the papal visit. After a personal visit with the pope, the governor of Missouri commuted the death sentence of Darrell Mease giving him life in prison instead.

The pope began the mass homily with a reference to the Trinity. He said, “Through Jesus Christ we know how much the Father loves us. In Jesus Christ, by the gift of the Holy Spirit, each one of us can share in the love that is the life of the Blessed Trinity.”

The dark papal doctrine of the Trinity stands in stark contrast to the teachings of the Bible. “For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.” (1 Timothy 2:5)

The pope again verified his support for the early councils that formulated the Trinity doctrine. A. T. Jones noted that the result of the first four of these Catholic councils, Nice, Constantinople, first of Ephesus, and Chalcedon, “was to put the dead formulas of human creed in the place of the living Word of God; a woman in the place of Christ; and a man in the place of God.

“The Second Council of Nice, three hundred and fifty bishops, ‘unanimously pronounced that the worship of images is agreeable to Scripture and reason, to the Fathers and Councils of the Church.’” (Lessons from the Reformation, p. 21)

It is amazing that a “Christian” council could decide that the worship of images is agreeable to Scripture. The Bible says, “Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me.” (Exodus 20:4, 5)

The same church that decided that the worship of images is agreeable to Scripture has a pope that said, “The Ten Commandments are the charter of true freedom, for individuals as well as for society as a whole.” (Pope John Paul II’s evening prayer on January 27, 1999 at the Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis)

The Catholic Church is one of the few churches that upholds the Ten Commandments as binding upon Christians today. Yet there is a difference between God’s Ten Commandments and the Ten Commandments the papacy promotes. As predicted in Bible prophecy, as found in Daniel chapter seven, the papacy thought to change God’s holy, moral law, the Ten Commandments. This has been done by completely deleting the second commandment dealing with image worship, and changing the fourth commandment to command worship on the first day of the week rather than the seventh. To retain the number ten in their commandments they split the tenth commandment into two. Many Catholics are unaware of these changes that have been made, yet if they will compare the Ten Commandments in their own Bibles with the Ten Commandments in their catechisms they will see the difference. Many Catholics have not even read the Ten Commandments in their own Bibles, but simply trust in the way their church teaches them.

During his evening prayer at the Cathedral the pope made another statement that is very interesting. He announced, “America first proclaimed its independence on the basis of self-evident moral truths. America will remain a beacon of freedom for the world as long as it stands by those moral truths which are the very heart of its historical experience.” The self-evident moral truths that America was founded upon have been attacked by the papacy since they were first written in the Constitution.

The first amendment of the Constitution states, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

Let us allow George Washington to explain the intent of the writers of the Constitution. On August 4th, 1789, in a letter to the committee of a Baptist society in Virginia in reply to questions as to the design of the Constitution, George Washington wrote:

“If I had the least idea of any difficulty resulting from the constitution adopted by the convention, of which I had the honor to be President when it was formed, so as to endanger the rights of any religious denomination, then I never should have attached my name to that instrument. If I had any idea that the General Government was so administered that liberty of conscience was endangered, I pray you be assured that no man would be more willing than myself to revise and alter that part of it, so as to avoid all religious persecutions. You can, without doubt, remember that I have often expressed my opinion, that every man who conducts himself as a good citizen is accountable alone to God for his religious faith, and should be protected in worshipping God according to the dictates of his own conscience.” (Quoted by Uriah Smith in The Marvel of Nations, p. 72)

The Congressional Committee of 1830 reported, “The framers of the constitution recognized the eternal principle, that man’s relation to his God is above human legislation, and his right of conscience inalienable. Reasoning was not necessary to establish this truth: we are conscious of it in our own bosoms. It is this consciousness which, in defiance of human laws, has sustained so many martyrs in tortures and flames. They felt that their duty to God was superior to human enactments, and that man could exercise no authority over their consciences. It is an inborn principle which nothing can eradicate.”

This country was founded upon the self-evident moral truths of freedom from religious persecution and liberty for people to worship God according to the dictates of their own conscience. The papacy has always attacked these self-evident moral truths as found in the Constitution of the United States of America.

John  Paul II statement at the evening prayer service appears to trumpet a different tone from one of his predecessors. Pope Pius IX, in his Encyclical Letter of August 15, 1854, said: “The absurd and erroneous doctrines or ravings in defense of liberty of conscience, are a most pestilential error—a pest, of all others, most to be dreaded in a State.” The same pope, in his Encyclical Letter of December 8, 1864, anathematized “those who assert the liberty of conscience and of religious worship,” and “all such as maintain that the church may not employ force.”

A careful consideration of the following quotation will help harmonize the apparently contrasting statements from Pius IX and John Paul II:

“The pacific tone of Rome in the United States does not imply a change of heart. She is tolerant where she is helpless. Says Bishop O’Connor: ‘Religious liberty is merely endured until the opposite can be carried into effect without peril to the Catholic world.’ The archbishop of St. Louis once said: ‘Heresy and unbelief are crimes; and in Christian countries, as in Italy and Spain, for instance, where all the people are Catholics, and where the Catholic religion is an essential part of the law of the land, they are punished as other crimes.’

“Every cardinal, archbishop, and bishop in the Catholic Church takes an oath of allegiance to the pope, in which occur the following words: ‘Heretics, schismatics, and rebels to our said lord the pope, or his aforesaid successors, I will to my utmost persecute and oppose.’” (Josiah Strong, D.D., Our Country, pp. 46-48)

MEETING THE PEOPLE

It was amazing to see so many Catholics at one place. Yet what was still more amazing was the presence of representatives from Protestant denominations: not protesting the papal system, but joining with them in welcoming the pope to the USA.

From all the Protestant churches in St. Louis, we only observed two churches represented as true Protestants in protesting the papal system. There was a small group of denominational Seventh-day Adventists passing out Christian literature who seemingly had done this without consent or sanction from the denominational leaders. There was also a small group of Baptists who were passing out a Christian pamphlet. It was ironic then to see a banner being held by some participating in the youth rally parade that portrayed a warm welcome to the pope from the Baptists!

There were about five different groups representing independent Seventh-day Adventists who were distributing Protestant literature at the large Catholic gatherings. It was amazing to see so few Protestants fulfilling their duty as protesters. If the same rally had been held 100-200 years ago, we would have seen a much larger number of protesters. It is clear that Protestants in America are a dying breed.

I, along with seventeen others, arrived in St. Louis on Monday, January 25, 1999, with the purpose of distributing flyers on the Bible topic of the separation of church and state. The flyer emphasized Christ as our example in all things. The Lord blessed us to be able to stay in a very nice facility made possible by a dear pastor in the local area to whom we owe much gratitude.

On Tuesday morning at 5:00 a.m. we began preparing for the day of the pope’s arrival. We arrived at the Gateway Arch at 7:00 a.m. where approximately 20,000 people gathered for the Youth Rally parade heading down Market Street. Soon after we began distributing flyers throughout the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial Park (The Gateway Arch) we were stopped by a federal park ranger who informed us that we are not allowed to distribute literature on federal property without a permit. I reminded him that we have the right to distribute literature on public property. He agreed, but then stated that this was federal property, which technically is public property, but that we still needed a permit. He was quick to remind us of our first amendment right of free speech, but that we needed to have a permit anyway.

Immediately the thought came to me of the oddity of having to obtain a permit to exercise my first amendment right of free speech, yet I kept this thought to myself. Later I discovered that others had also been so impressed. However, the Lord overruled. The park ranger showed us where we could distribute literature on the sidewalk of Market Street. This turned out to be an excellent place to distribute literature to those participating in the parade. (It was actually more like a march than a parade.)

At 9:00 a.m. the police ushered the first wave of people through, stopping the rest until the first wave was well on its way. This worked well for distributing flyers. All eighteen of us were stationed in various places on Market Street, and we were easily able to go through the marching crowd and distribute approximately 10,000 fliers. I held as many fliers as I could hold in one hand, and by the time the first wave of people went through, I needed to get more. Then the next wave would come. This went on for a couple hours until the entire group had marched away from the Gateway Arch.

Mass Ticket
One of several tickets left over after the crowd had entered the TWA  building for the papal mass.

At 5:30 p.m. the pope was scheduled to ride three and a half miles down Lindell Blvd./Olive Street. Thousands of people lined the streets to catch a glimpse of the visible leader of the papacy. About 4:00 p.m. we arrived at the area where people were gathering for the event. Walking the three and a half miles with backpacks full of fliers, we were able to distribute several thousand more fliers to the expectant spectators. Hundreds of police and secret service agents in and out of uniform were seen throughout the streets and on the tops of buildings with rifles and search lights. The pope finally rode down the street about ten minutes after six. The crowds dispersed rapidly after the windowed, bullet proof popemobile carried the pope and two attendants down the street.

That evening we were all tired and sore from the day’s work, yet at 4:00 a.m. Wednesday morning we began preparing to distribute literature at the Trans World Dome where the pope would conduct mass at 9:00 a.m. We arrived at the stadium around 5:30 a.m. after struggling to find a parking spot. It was amazing to see some of the long lines that had formed at the doors even this early in the morning. We quickly began distributing literature to a generally courteous group of Catholics and others. More than 100,000 people attended the mass. We were able to distribute approximately 15,000 fliers at this gathering.

While most everyone we met was courteous, many people made it clear that they did not want any literature that was not official Catholic material. One group of independent Adventists was passing out a booklet on teaching that Mary, the mother of Jesus was dead as the Bible teaches. When many Catholics discovered this, they displayed a great deal of emotion and many ripped-up copies of the booklet could be seen on the streets.

To our surprise, we did not get confronted by any cardinal, bishop, or priest instructing us not to distribute the literature. Some of our group were interviewed by local and national media. The main questions being asked were, “Why are you distributing literature and what is its content?”

We praise God that He allowed us to distribute approximately 30,000 fliers to those for whom Christ died. In these fliers we offered a free book entitled America in Prophecy (The Great Controversy). We have already received several requests for books. Some have requested multiple copies. Please pray for God to send His angels to attend every piece of literature that we were able to distribute to these dear souls.

My friends, these days of freedom are short. The freedom we have to distribute literature will soon come to an end. Please utilize the freedom you have now to distribute all the literature you can. ?


Convocation Report &
Notice of Upcoming Meetings

On February 11-13, 1999, the Smyrna Chapel in West Virginia hosted meetings where brethren from as far away as Arizona came to discuss the work of God. Approximately twenty-five brothers and sisters prayed for guidance to know how to cooperate with the Lord to be used in the giving of the three angels’ messages. The theme of the meetings was “Working Intelligently.”

While several topics were suggested for discussion, time limitations allowed for only two main areas of discussion: camp meeting and gospel finance.

It was the general consensus that two major camp meetings should be held this year. One camp meeting would be in the eastern part of the United States with the other being in the western part. The site chosen for the eastern meeting was southern Illinois. We are currently exploring the possibility of a facility near Marion, Illinois. The tentative date for the eastern meeting will be September 9-18. The western camp meeting will be May 7-15 at Wilhoit, Arizona. The ministers attending pledged to support these efforts in every way possible, including their presence. It was the consensus that every effort would be made to encourage all the believers to attend the camp meeting nearest them.

I personally initiated the discussion about camp meeting and I would like to share with you why I felt so imposed. We have been encouraged many times by the Lord through His servant that we should have and attend camp meetings. We are told that camp meetings, among other things, “promote spiritual life among our own people.” (Testimonies for the Church, vol. 6, p. 32) While some may feel that the effort to travel a full day, two, or even three to attend a camp meeting is too much, careful consideration should be given to the following statements:

“Anciently the Lord instructed His people to assemble three times a year for His worship. To these holy convocations the children of Israel came, bringing to the house of God their tithes, their sin offerings, and their offerings of gratitude. They met to recount God’s mercies, to make known His wonderful works, and to offer praise and thanksgiving to His name. And they were to unite in the sacrificial service which pointed to Christ as the Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world. Thus they were to be preserved from the corrupting power of worldliness and idolatry. Faith and love and gratitude were to be kept alive in their hearts, and through their association together in this sacred service they were to be bound closer to God and to one another.

“In the days of Christ these feasts were attended by vast multitudes of people from all lands; and had they been kept as God intended, in the spirit of true worship, the light of truth might through them have been given to all the nations of the world.

“With those who lived at a distance from the tabernacle, more than a month of every year must have been occupied in attendance upon these holy convocations. The Lord saw that these gatherings were necessary for the spiritual life of His people. They needed to turn away from their worldly cares, to commune with God, and to contemplate unseen realities.

“If the children of Israel needed the benefit of these holy convocations in their time, how much more do we need them in these last days of peril and conflict! And if the people of the world then needed the light which God had committed to His church, how much more do they need it now!” (Ibid., pp. 39, 40)

We have also been counseled: “Let all who possibly can, attend these yearly gatherings [camp meetings]. All should feel that God requires this of them. If they do not avail themselves of the privileges which He has provided that they may become strong in Him and in the power of His grace, they will grow weaker and weaker, and have less and less desire to consecrate all to God. Come, brethren and sisters, to these sacred convocation meetings, to find Jesus. He will come up to the feast. He will be present, and He will do for you that which you most need to have done. Your farms should not be considered of greater value than the higher interests of the soul. All the treasures which you possess, be they ever so valuable, would not be rich enough to buy you peace and hope, which would be infinite gain, if it cost you all you have and the toils and sufferings of a lifetime. A strong, clear sense of eternal things, and a heart willing to yield all to Christ, are blessings of more value than all the riches and pleasures and glories of this world.” (Ibid., vol. 2, pp. 575, 576)

The truth of these statements is vividly illustrated by the spiritual growth, unity, and solidarity of our brethren in Jamaica. Brother David Clayton feels that the regular camp meetings they have had in the past have contributed greatly to the spiritual growth and solidarity that exist among the believers in Jamaica. Camp meeting is always considered a spiritual highlight in Jamaica and all the brethren feel a special burden to attend. After personally attending one such gathering and seeing the spiritual fruit reaped, I felt a burden to encourage our brethren in the states to make camp meeting a priority in their lives.

General agreement was voiced that our camp meetings need to be gospel centered with the practical and heartfelt needs of the people being met. The necessity of having a well-organized schedule at camp meeting was discussed. Acknowledgment was made that while our meetings have failed to be systematic in the past, the schedule for the meetings this year would, by God’s grace, carry the gospel order that heaven requires. “Let all things be done decently and in order.” (1 Corinthians 14:40) “Order is heaven’s first law. ” (R&H, June 10, 1902) It was decided that a communion service would be held at each camp meeting.

The second major area of discussion at the February meeting was finance for the gospel ministers. Finances are usually a very difficult subject to get everybody to agree upon. The February meeting was no exception to the rule. While the discussion was at times lively, a kind spirit was displayed by all those who attended. Some in attendance felt like there could be a central fund where money could be voluntary sent and then redirected to various ministers who might be in need. This suggestion met with a great deal of resistance.

While there was a general agreement that an arrangement could be a blessing to many, no specific implementation could be settled upon. One of the advantages that many thought would be helpful from such a fund would be that an anonymous donation could be made to ministers who would never need to find out who was supplying the assistance. In this way, ministers would be freed from the temptation of feeling obligated to those who had helped them.

One of the most important freedoms that  the brethren appreciate is that of being free from hierarchal rule. There was, and is, among the brethren a strong desire to avoid forming another denomination or organization. To some, the idea of having a central fund that would be supplied on a voluntary basis appears as a step toward organization. Others just did not see a need for a central fund.

The concern about centralization was balanced against the other extreme error of no order at all. There was a general consensus that this topic was worthy of further discussion and would be brought up at the next such meeting. It was decided to have another meeting April 15-17 in Illinois. Just as the gathering at Smyrna was an open meeting with all invited to participate, all the brothers and sisters of precious like faith are invited and encouraged to attend the meeting at Illinois. For further information concerning specific meeting times, housing arrangements, and subject matter, you may contact: 7th day Adventist Home Church, 1210 Birdwell Road, Creal Springs, IL 62922. Phone: (618) 996-2525 – ask for Crystal.

The Sabbath morning meetings were highlighted with spirit filled Bible study and preaching. In the afternoon there were testimonies and a singspiration. One of the special highlights of the day was an anointing service where prayer was offered for the sick. One brother who had been having back difficulties for several months was given relief by the Lord. We praise God for His goodness and mercy to us. Please plan on attending the camp meeting nearest you this year and receive a rich blessing as well as to share a blessing with others.

Some Important Currently Planned Meetings You Are Invited to:

Allen Stump


The Wmega of Apostasy

By Allen Stump - All emphasis supplied unless noted. (Part 2)

The 1919 Bible Conference

History reveals that it was shortly after the death of Ellen G. White that the S. D. A. Church quickly moved to embrace the Trinity doctrine. In the 1919 Bible Conference, W. W. Prescott gave a series of studies entitled, “The Person of Christ.” These studies promoting Trinitarianism were not universally received by the delegates. The discussion following his presentations became quite intense. G. C. President A. G. Daniells, attempted to calm the discussions down by stating: “We are not going to take a vote on trinitarianism or arianism, but we can think.” (Transcript from the 1919 Bible Conference){“This fact, categorically disproves the false notion that Ellen White (through ‘Desire of Ages’), corrected the prevailing anti-Trinitarian position of the Advent Pioneers.” (Fred Allaback – Holland 95, p. 34)}

The Coming of the Comforter

The movement to adopt Trinitarianism and to become like the rest of the world was on. Ellen White predicted that “books of a new order would be written.” In 1928 LeRoy Froom’s book, The Coming of the Comforter was published. In this book, Froom teaches the false doctrine of the Trinity and, as Kellogg did before him, he uses Ellen White quotes to substantiate his position. This book was the result of studies that Froom had given during the 1928 North American union ministerial institutes. At the time of the writing, Froom did not mention that he received help from Babylon in producing his book. It was over forty years later before he confessed:

May I here make a frank personal confession? When, back between 1926 and 1928, I was asked by our leaders to give a series of studies on the Holy Spirit, covering the North American union ministerial institutes of 1928, I found that, aside from priceless leads found in the Spirit of Prophecy, there was practically nothing in our literature setting forth a sound Biblical exposition in this tremendous field of study. There were no previous pathfinding books on the question in our literature.

I was compelled to search out a score of valuable books written by men outside our faith—those previously noted—for initial clues and suggestions, and to open up beckoning vistas to intensive personal study. Having these, I went on from there. But they were decided early helps. And scores, if not hundreds, could confirm the same sobering conviction that some of these other men frequently had a deeper insight into the spiritual things of God than many of our own men then had on the Holy Spirit and the triumphant life. It was still a largely obscure theme. (Movement of Destiny, p. 322) {The men “outside our faith” that Froom included, “Murry, Simpson, Gordon, Holden, Meyer, McNeil, Moody, Waugh, McConkey, Scroggie, Howden, Smith, McKensie, McIntosh, Brooks, Dixon, Kyle, Morgan, Needham, Pierson, Seiss, Thomas, West, and a score of others.” (Ibid., p. 320)}

Please carefully note what one researcher has observed Elder Froom was saying: “1.) There was nothing in our literature - why- because we were not trinitarians. 2.) That whatever was to be presented in 1928 would have its roots in whatever the holiness people taught - especially on this subject. 3.) He is charging our own men with neglect in the searching into the deeper spiritual things of God.” (Robert Diener - A History of the Godhead in the Seventh-day Adventist Church, p. 6)

Elder Froom also gives credit to holiness people for a better understanding of the eternal verities. He specifically mentions the “renowned Keswick Conferences of Britain ... founded to ‘promote practical holiness.’” (Ibid.) {The Keswick conferences were groups of Pentecostals!} This Pentecostal Trinitarianism was not accepted by all of the brethren in 1928. Froom describes the resistance to the Trinity doctrine as taught in The Coming of the Comforter in a letter to Dr. O. H. Christenson:

May I state that my book, The Coming of the Comforter was the result of a series of studies that I gave in 1927-1928 to ministerial institutes throughout North America. You cannot imagine how I was pummeled by some of the old timers because I pressed on the personality of the Holy Spirit as the Third Person of the Godhead. Some men denied that—still deny it. But the book has come to be generally accepted as standard. (Letter of LeRoy Froom to Dr. Otto H. Christenson, October 27, 1960)

One statement in The Coming of the Comforter of special interest is found on page 40. “If He [the Holy Spirit] is a divine person, and we think of Him as an impersonal influence, we are robbing a divine person of the deference, honor, and love that is His due. Again, if the Holy Spirit is a mere influence or power, we shall try to get hold of and use it. But if we recognize Him as a person, we shall study how to yield to Him, that He may use us.” Froom had borrowed this idea almost verbatim from a book by a Protestant evangelist, R. A. Torry, entitled, The Fundamentals. One writer has looked at this statement and presented a probing question: “If the Holy Spirit is not a separate and distinct being other than the Father and His Son, and if we give ‘deference, honor and love’ to this divine person, and if we also yield ourselves to this other God who is not the Father and/or His Son, then who are we worshipping and yielding our lives to? That’s right. Satan himself.” (Holland 95, p. 82) This may seem difficult for many to accept, but Ellen White describes just such a thing in an early broadside:

In February, 1845, I had a vision of events commencing with the Midnight Cry. I saw a throne and on it sat the Father and the Son. I gazed on Jesus’ countenance and admired his lovely person. The Father’s person I could not behold, for a cloud of glorious light covered him. I asked Jesus if his Father had a form like himself. He said he had, but I could not behold it, for said he if you should once behold the glory of his person you would cease to exist. Before the throne I saw the Advent people, the church, and the world. I saw a company, bowed down before the throne, deeply interested, while the most of them stood up disinterested and careless. Those who were bowed before the throne would offer up their prayers and look to Jesus; then he would look to his Father, and appeared to be pleading with Him. A light would come from the Father to the Son, and from the Son to the praying company. Then I saw an exceeding bright light come from the Father to the Son, and from the Son it waved over the people before the throne. But few would receive this great light; many came out from under it and immediately resisted it; others were careless and did not cherish the light, and it moved off from them; some cherished it, and went and bowed down with the little praying company. This company all received the light, and rejoiced in it, as their countenances shone with its glory. And I saw the Father rise from the throne, and in a flaming Chariot go into the Holy of Holies, within the veil, and did sit. There I saw thrones that I had never seen before. Then Jesus rose up from the throne, and the most of those who were bowed down arose with Him; and I did not see one ray of light pass from Jesus to the careless multitude after he arose, and they were left in perfect darkness. Those who rose up when Jesus did, kept their eyes fixed on Him as He left the throne and led them out a little way. — Then He raised His right arm and we heard his lovely voice saying, “Wait here—I am going to my Father to receive the Kingdom; keep your garments spotless, and in a little while I will return from the wedding and receive you to myself.” And I saw a cloudy chariot, with wheels like flaming fire, and Angels were all around it as it came where Jesus was. He stepped into the chariot and was borne to the Holiest where the Father sat. There I beheld Jesus, as He was standing before the Father, a great High Priest. On the hem of His garment was a bell and pomegranate. Then Jesus shew me the difference between faith and feeling. And I saw those who rose up with Jesus send up their faith to Him in the Holiest, and pray—my Father give us thy Spirit. Then Jesus would breathe upon them the Holy Ghost. In the breath was light, power, and much love, joy and peace. Then I turned to look at the company who were still bowed before the throne; they did not know that Jesus had left it.—Satan appeared to be by the throne, trying to carry on the work of God; I saw them look up to the throne and pray, my Father give us thy Spirit; then Satan would breathe upon them an unholy influence; in it there was light and much power, but no sweet love, joy and peace. Satan’s object was to keep them deceived, and to draw back and deceive God’s children. I saw one after another leave the company who were praying to Jesus in the Holiest, and go and join those before the throne, and they at once received the unholy influence of Satan.  (To the Little Remnant Scattered Abroad , April 6, 1846, p. 7)

In this vision we see two different persons breathing two different spirits upon the people. Jesus would breathe “the Holy Ghost” which is described as having “light, power, and much love.” Satan’s “unholy influence” (spirit) carried “no sweet love, joy and peace.” The tragedy of accepting the Trinity is not only that we deny worship to “The Father and the Son [who] are alone to be exalted,” but we become snared by Satan’s spiritualism! (Youth’s Instructor, July 7, 1898 - See also Sons and Daughters of God, p. 58)

1931 Statement of Beliefs

The apostasy that Sister White warned of would actually change our whole religious structure. “The principles of truth that God in His wisdom has given to the remnant church, would be discarded. Our religion would be changed. The fundamental principles that have sustained the work for the last fifty years would be accounted as error. A new organization would be established. Books of a new order would be written. A system of intellectual philosophy would be introduced.” (Series B, no. 2, p. 55) When the theology of any religious organization is altered, that system is changed at its very foundation. For nearly a century, the church had professed an anti-Trinitarian position. In 1931 a new Statement of Beliefs was introduced, which for the first time, promoted the Trinity. The second statement reads:

2.   That the Godhead or Trinity, consists of the Eternal Father, a personal, spiritual Being, omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient, infinite in wisdom and love; the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Eternal Father, through whom all things were created and through whom the salvation of the redeemed hosts will be accomplished; the Holy Spirit, the third person of the Godhead, the great regenerating power in the work of redemption. (Church Manual, 1963 ed. p. 29)

With the urging of the General Conference Statistical Secretary, Edson Rogers, along with certain requests for a clarified statement from the field, a committee of four was appointed to oversee the preparation of a new Statement of Beliefs. The four chosen were Milton E. Kern, Francis M. Wilcox, Edwin R. Palmer, and Charles H. Watson. Wilcox was chosen by the other three to prepare the main draft. With the full knowledge and approval of the others, Wilcox gave his statement to Rogers who placed it in the 1931 Yearbook. It appeared in the Church Manual in 1933. This statement was not voted on by the General Conference.

On January 14, 1942, the General Conference Committee voted that the (Wilcox) statement of  “Fundamental Beliefs” be made available in leaflet form. It had appeared in our official Church Manual of 1933—similarly without formal adoption—and has been in each succeeding edition. It was therefore by common consent and not by formal voted acceptance that Wilcox’s suggested “Fundamental Beliefs,” ... became our accepted Statement of Faith. (Movement of Destiny, p. 419 - emphasis in the original)

1941 Baptismal Vow
and New Hymnal

A new baptismal vow was introduced in 1941 which included an affirmative statement of the candidates’ belief of the Trinity. {“I am writing to you brethren as a group, for you are the only living members of the original committee of thirteen, appointed in 1941 to frame a uniform Baptismal Covenant, Vow, and Certificate. Elder Branson was chairman and I was secretary, Elder McElhaney, (J. F.) Wright, Ruhling, and (A. B.) Russell are all deceased. ... The task of this committee was to formulate a uniform Baptismal Covenant, and Vow, based on the 1931 ‘Fundamental Beliefs’ statement in the Yearbook and Manual. It was also to point up a bit more sharply the First, Second, and Third Persons of the Godhead.” (Letter of L. E. Froom to R. A. Anderson, J. L. Shuler, D. E. Rebok, A. W. Peterson, W. G. Turner, J. E. Weaver, November 22, 1966)} This was also the year that the Church Hymnal appeared. Our early song books had been changed to promote the truth about God and Christ. The Church Hymnal was the start toward Trinitarian hymns. {For a further discussion, see A History of the Godhead in the Seventh-day Adventist Church, p. 7, 8 - Robert Diener.}

Our past has been accounted as error and “false doctrine.”{See Johnsson op. cit}    Books of a “new order” have been written.{The Coming of the Comforter, Questions on Doctrine, By Faith Alone, Movement of Destiny, Seventh-day Adventists  Believe...., etc.} “Nothing would be allowed to stand in the way of the new movement.” (Series B, no. 2, p. 55) Elder Froom stated that the “Denomination [was] irrevocably committed to” [the] basic Christian verities.” (Movement of Destiny, p. 75) {By the “basic Christian verities” Froom meant the new theology that teaches the Trinity, the pre-fall incarnation, and the complete and final atonement on the cross.}

Holdouts

By the early 1940’s, there were still some holdouts who resisted the new theology. One was a minister by the name of Elder J. S. Washburn, who in 1940 wrote a blistering attack on Elder W. W. Prescott for a sermon that Prescott had preached in the Takoma Park Church, (Md.) on October 14, 1939. The title of Prescott’s sermon was “The Coming One,” and dealt with the Trinity among other subjects. Washburn’s paper, while highly personal, was liked so well by one conference president that he asked for thirty-two copies to distribute to all the ministers in his conference. The significance of the matter is not so much the specific content of the sermon, nor the reply of Washburn, but rather, that in 1940 there was still an anti-Trinitarian faction of the church. {For a defense of Prescott’s character, see Elder D. E. Robinson’s letter of April 25, 1940 to J. S. Washburn.}

Another long holdout was Elder Charles S. Longacre. Like Washburn, Longacre was an older minister who personally knew and had talked with Ellen White. He was no off-shoot individual. His list of positions of responsibility in the church was long and weighted with important posts. {See Seventh-day Adventist Encyclopedia, pp. 810, 811.} Elder Longacre was still alive when Questions on Doctrine was being prepared. The original draft sent out contained the following question and response:

Is it possible for an individual to remain in good and regular standing in the Seventh-day Adventist Church if he consistently refuses to submit to church authority regarding the historic doctrine of the deity of Jesus Christ?

The answer to this question is an unequivocal No. (Question #34, Questions on Doctrine file.)

Of the copies sent to the field for consideration, one copy was returned with the following question hand-written beside the answer: “Would we disfellowship Elder Longacre?” Here, just months before his death in 1958, Elder Longacre is still a known anti-Trinitarian. God has always had a “faithful few” who continued to carry the torch of truth while others accepted the “hellish torch of Satan.” {See Testimonies to Ministers, p. 409}

The Revision of
Daniel and Revelation

By 1944, most of the obstacles had been removed so the new theology could fully engulf the movement. One thorn in the flesh was Uriah Smith’s book, Daniel and Revelation. This book, originally published in two portions, Thoughts, Critical and Practical, on the Book of Revelation (1867), and Thoughts, Critical and Practical, on the Book of Daniel (1873), carried the endorsement of Ellen G. White. {See Colporteur Ministry, pp. 123, 124.} It was and has been the longest running Adventist publication in print outside of the Spirit of Prophecy books. However, it taught an anti-Trinitarian view of Christ. The necessity of removing it from circulation for this reason was suggested by W. W. Prescott at the 1919 Bible Conference. {“Ought we to continue to circulate in a standard book a statement that the Son is not co-eternal, that the Son is not co-eval or co-eternal with the Father?” (W. W. Prescott - 1919 Bible Conference materials for afternoon session of June 2, 1919)} Rather than dropping what many considered an otherwise fine volume, it was decided that the book would be “revised” to help bring it up to date with historical events that had occurred since it had last been revised by Elder Smith. However, the main thrust in the revision was to remove the anti-Trinitarian statements.{See Movement of Destiny, p. 160. Also, in 1949, Prof. D. E. Rebok was asked by the Review & Herald to revise Bible Readings for the Home Circle. He eliminated the teaching that Jesus accepted the sinful nature of man as had been taught in the earlier edition on page 174. Froom states: “So the inaccurate note was deleted, and has remained out in all subsequent printings. Thus another error was removed through these revisions of the 1940’s, as concerned some of our standard and otherwise helpful books.” (Movement of Destiny, p. 428)}

The Publication of Evangelism

The book Evangelism was published in 1946 to help continue the progress of Trinitarianism within Adventism by attaching the authoritativeness of inspiration to the “new theology.” While the volume contains a wealth of Spirit of Prophecy statements, it gave Froom, who was on the editorial committee, the opportunity to compile Ellen White statements in such a manner as to distort her true position.  This was done using the following tactics: 1. Statements were used out of context including the use of numerous ellipses. 2. Subtitles were applied to introduce thoughts in the reader’s mind not in the quote. 3. An unbalanced number of statements were used without the complementary statements necessary to give a total picture. In a letter to his ally, R. A. Anderson, Froom stated:

I am sure that we are agreed in evaluating the book, Evangelism as one of the great contributions in which the Ministerial Association had a part back in those days. You know what it did with men in the Columbia Union who came face to face with the clear, unequivocal statements of the Spirit of Prophecy on the Deity of Christ, personality of the Holy Spirit, the Trinity, and the like. They either had to lay down their arms and accept those statements, or else they had to reject the Spirit of Prophecy.

I know that you and Miss Kleuser and I had considerable to do with the selection of these things under the encouragement of men like Elder Branson who felt that the earlier concept of the White Estate brethren on this book Evangelism was not adequate. (Letter of LeRoy Froom to Roy A. Anderson, January 18, 1966)

Froom stated that in 1946 there was still a hold-out against Trinitarianism within the Columbia Union. Here we see the Spirit of Prophecy was used as a club to force the brethren into line instead of the “Bible and the Bible alone” being the sole rule of faith and practice among the brethren. Further, the leadership of the church did not believe that the brethren at the White Estate had an “adequate” concept for Evangelism.

A Call For Repentance

In 1950, two young missionaries from Africa attended the General Conference Session at Cleveland, Ohio. Elders Robert Wieland and Donald K. Short expressed concern to the brethren that the church had veered off the course given by the Lord in 1888. They were asked to write out their thoughts with the result being the manuscript, 1888 Re-Examined. While not seeing the Trinitarian issue, they did an excellent work in a short period of time discussing the situation of the church at that time. They believed that the church was “ripe for disillusionment:”

It is now abundantly evident that “we” have traveled the road of disillusionment since the Minneapolis meeting of 1888. Infatuation with false teachings has taken the place of clear, cogent, heaven-inspired truth, as regards “righteousness by faith.” By the hard, humiliating way of actual experience with counterfeits, Israel has brought herself to the time when she is ripe for disillusionment. (1888 Re-Examined, 1950 ed. p. 202)

Wieland and Short were attempting to show how a “false Christ” could  appear among us. They believed, accurately, that misrepresentation would proceed impersonation. (See p. 171.) A careful reading of 1888 Re-Examined reveals that while Wieland and Short mostly discussed the importance of the incarnation and the high priestly ministry of Christ, there were touches of Christology that ran against the normal Trinitarian thinking. For example, they stated clearly that Christ had accepted the “likeness of sinful flesh” that it “was not mere appearance, but reality.” (Ibid., p. 156 - emphasis in original) This led them to believe that Jesus “emptied Himself of all divine power to work a miracle, except through faith in the Father.” (Ibid., pp. 156, 157) Further, they taught that Christ really died at Calvary:

The death of such a false Christ would have no power to draw all men, such as a clear understanding of the death of the true Christ. It would rather be an inexplicable transaction that took place between the Father and the Son, which somehow sufficed to pacify the wrath of the Father against mankind in general. The confusion is pointed by the fact that the false view requires the belief that the Son of God did not die, but only the Son of man, i. e., His body. It throws a cloud of impenetrable mystery around the very phase of Christ’s work which was intended to appeal to human hearts and intelligence, and draw them to a sincere, unaffected reconciliation with God. (Ibid., p. 158)

It is the sincere belief of the writer that God was using Wieland and Short to attempt a rescue of His people. While they did not understand all the issues involved at the time, it was more than a modest start. The General Conference, however, officially rejected the message and began at once to counter the work that Wieland and Short began.{See A Warning and Its Reception.}

The 1952 Bible Conference

Partly in response to the call of Wieland and Short in 1950, Elder William H. Branson convened the 1952 Bible Conference. It was the church’s first Bible Conference since 1919 and only the second since 1888. While the theme was to be the righteousness of Christ, the messages never got to the root of the problem; the Trinitarian view was never challenged. Near the end of the conference, Branson gave the following challenge:

To a large degree the church failed to build on the foundation laid at the 1888 General Conference. ... But the message of righteousness by faith given in the 1888 Conference has been repeated here...

And this great truth has been given in this 1952 Bible Conference with far greater power than it was given in the 1888 Conference. ... No longer will the question be. “What was the attitude of our workers and people toward the message of righteousness by faith that was given in 1888? What did they do about it?” From now on the question must be. “What did we do with the light on righteousness by faith as proclaimed in the 1952 Bible Conference?” (Our Firm Foundation, vol. II, pp. 616, 617 - quoted from Watchman, What of the Night, November, 1996, p. 3)

Branson made clear reference to 1888 Re-Examined and then attempted to shift the focus from 1888 to 1952. The answer to Branson’s question concerning the so called “light on righteousness by faith as proclaimed in the 1952 Bible Conference” did not have to wait long to be answered.

The 1955, 1956
S. D. A. - Evangelical Conferences

If the true message of righteousness by faith had been given and received by the church in 1952, then the Seventh-day Adventist - Evangelical Conferences would have never taken place. As noted earlier, these conferences were held between prominent Evangelicals (Walter Martin, George E. Cannon, Donald Barnhouse) and leaders of the Adventist Church (LeRoy Froom, Roy A. Anderson, Walter E. Read, and T. E. Unruh). {Froom was the author of The Coming of the Comforter, Anderson was on the 1941 Baptismal Vow committee, and Read was a member of the committee that edited Daniel and Revelation.} The main focal point of these conferences was the Trinitarian doctrine. Roy A. Anderson later wrote about his experience of first coming in contact with the Evangelicals:

“What do you folks believe about the Trinity?” was a question put to me some years ago by two gracious Christian gentlemen who came unannounced to the General Conference headquarters in Washington D. C. …

Both men were Christian college professors who had read much about Adventists, but all from detractors, and one of them was commissioned to write a new book about Adventist beliefs. However, they felt they should contact the headquarters to discover what we actually believe on points of vital interest rather than just quoting from others.

The answers to their earnest questions lengthened into days of prayerful discussions. Our answer concerning the Godhead and the Trinity was crucial, for in some of the books they had read that Adventists were classed as Arians;… (Adventist Review, September 8, 1983, p. 4 - emphasis in original.)

As Martin had noted to Anderson, some books had classed Adventists as Arians because of their anti-Trinitarian belief. In fact, Martin had failed to classify Seventh-day Adventists as “Christians” in his first printing of his book, The Rise of Cults. The emphasis at the beginning of the conferences was on past anti-Trinitarian statements made by the pioneers of Adventism including Ellen White! Martin gave a brief history of how it occurred to a group of ministers in 1989.

The climate at that time [1955, 1956], Adventism was considered like Jehovah’s Witnesses, like Mormonism, like most of the major cultic structures of the day. ...

When I first met with L. E. Froom, he took me to task for about fifteen minutes on how I could ever possibly think that Adventism was a cult. “Adventism rings as true as steel.” I said, “do you think Arius was a Christian?” And he was an excellent church historian and he said, “Of course he wasn’t a Christian, he denied the deity of Jesus Christ.” I said, “So did Ellen White.” Dr. Froom replied, “What!” I said, “yes” and opened up a suitcase and produced at least twelve feet of Adventist publications stacked up and marked for Dr. Froom’s perusal. And for the perusal of the committee to check the sources in there. And they were in mortal shock I might add, to think that it was as pervasive as it was. Mrs. White reversed herself later on very quickly, and affirmed the doctrine of the Trinity very strongly and taught it. But she was influenced by Uriah Smith. She did deny the eternal deity of Christ at one time and relegated Him to the place of a second deity. That’s why you were classified with the the Jehovah’s Witnesses early on, because of the Arian emphasis in Adventism. And because of the fact that you affirmed Michael the Archangel to be Christ.

Dr. Froom and the committee decided that they would peruse this material immediately. So we adjourned the meeting and they took all the materials with them and I guess others, and went through the materials. They came back and said, “well, a great deal of these things you’re calling attention to are there, we agree, and we don’t agree with these statements. They do not reflect orthodox Adventist theology, and we reject it.” I said, “good, happy to hear that, now can you fault us, because we read this material, and it’s not peripheral issues we are talking about.” ...

We went through all kinds of materials and then the idea came for a book where we would question and the Adventist denomination would respond. ... Out of that came the book Question on Doctrine. Contrary to some of the fantasies and myths which I hear today from Adventists who ought to know better, the book had the approval of the General Conference. (Walter Martin - taped conference at Campus Hill Church in Loma Linda, CA, January 1989)

Elder Froom and those who met with Martin “accounted as error” the foundation that had sustained the work since its early times. Dr. Barnhouse, writing in Eternity magazine, noted:

Immediately it was perceived that the Adventists were strenuously denying certain doctrinal positions which had been previously attributed to them.

The Adventists specifically repudiate any teachings by ministers or members of their faith who have believed, proclaimed, and written any matter which would classify them among Arians. (Eternity, September, 1956)

Elder Froom, in both Questions on Doctrine and later in Movement of Destiny, blatantly lied concerning our history. He attempted to show that anti-Trinitarianism was “an encapsulated cancer, gross but confined.” (The Sanctuary and the Atonement, p. 530) In Questions on Doctrine we read, “The founding fathers of the Seventh-day Adventist Church over a century ago came out of various denominational backgrounds. While all were premillennialists, some were Trinitarian; others were Arian.” (p. 29) This is but a half  truth. The facts are, that while the pioneers were from “various denominational backgrounds,” once becoming Seventh-day Adventists, they all gave up their false Trinitarian beliefs. In Movement of Destiny, Froom labeled the anti-Trinitarians as having the “minority” view. (See p. 149.) Then he went on to explain why certain statements were made in Questions on Doctrine. Froom noted that some of the answers given to the Evangelicals were made as a public disavowal of statements made by the early pioneers, “the early erroneous concepts of a [so-called] minority clearly needed repudiated. So the appointed framers of the answers to their questions prepared a simple statement disavowing these personal, individual, [so-called] minority positions, for inclusion in the forth coming book, to be called Seventh-day Adventists Answer Questions on Doctrine.” (Movement of Destiny, pp. 483, 484) These statements were necessary to clear up the misconceptions from prior statements. The disavowal read in part:

The belief of Seventh-day Adventists on these great truths is clear and emphatic. And we feel that we should not be identified with or stigmatized for, certain limited and faulty concepts held by some, particularly in our formative years.

This statement should therefore nullify the stock “quotations” that have been circulated against us. We are one with our fellow Christians of denominational groups in the great fundamentals of the faith once delivered to the saints. (Questions on Doctrine, pp. 31, 32)

What a shame to say that we are “one with our fellow Christians of denominational groups.” Froom and the rest can call it “Christian” till the plagues fall; God calls it “BABYLON” and what authority do we have to call “Christian” that which God pronounces “Babylon?”

1971 - Movement of Destiny

Although we have already noted Froom’s book, Movement of Destiny, and quoted from it, we should note the following points. Movement of Destiny was a clear attempt to rewrite our history and present the growth of the Advent movement as being of an evangelical character from its roots. It fully supported the Trinity and the continued compromises made in the 1950’s. Froom also took liberty to attack Wieland and Short for their observance of how the church had gotten off the track of truth as given in 1888. The book carried a preface by Elder Neal Wilson, then General Conference vice president and chairman of the guiding committee for Movement of Destiny. The book’s forward was originally written by Elder Robert Pierson, then president of the General Conference. However, due to backlash over references to Elder Robert Wieland, Pierson withdrew his statement. In his place, Elder H. M. S. Richards Sr., of the Voice of Prophecy, wrote the forward for the later edition! Of importance is the impetus for the book and the timing of its appearance. Froom acknowledges that:

Back in the spring of 1930 Arthur G. Daniells, for more than twenty years president of the General Conference, told me he believed that, at a later time, I should undertake a thorough survey of the entire plan of redemption…

… I was a connecting link between past leaders and the present. But, he said, it is to be later—not yet, not yet.

Elder Daniells recognized the serious problems involved, and sensed almost prophetically certain difficulties that would confront. He knew that time would be required for certain theological wounds to heal, and for attitudes to modify on the part of some. Possibly it would be necessary to wait until certain individuals had dropped out of action [died!], before the needed portrayal could wisely be brought forth. (Movement of Destiny, p. 17)

To be continued next month:


Youth's Corner
“Without Leaving Home”

“And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household.” These prophetic words of Christ about the division that would come in the last days to homes and families over faith in Him are increasingly being fulfilled today. But the way in which they became a reality to Bertha Schmidt was a sensational surprise.

During the early days of Napoleon’s vicious wars, Denmark’s relationship brought about a great deal of displeasure. A hostile army force combining soldiers from Sweden and Russia, swept into Schleswig, the capital of the province.

On the road between Schleswig and Stralsund, the invaders brought destruction and desolation to village after village. Frightened people streamed from their homes everywhere to make their way to safety.

Bertha lived in a small cottage with her son and daughter-in-law in an even smaller village on that road of doom. When the news came that all the inhabitants were taking some meager possessions and leaving their homes, Bertha asked what the three of them should do.

Due to the freezing temperatures that came nightly, they decided that it would be best to stay right in their home and see what happened. Their decision was that it would be best to be killed by a soldier’s gun than to slowly freeze to death in hiding somewhere.

They barricaded the front and back doors with their few pieces of furniture. They knew that it would do little good as the soldiers would simply burn down the resisting homes.

After placing all the furniture in a position to do the most good and after closing and locking all the windows and shutters, they sat down on the floor, dejected and tired.

Bertha took her Bible off the night stand and held it in her arms. After staring at it for a few minutes, she said, “Round us a wall our God shall rear, And our proud foes shall quail with fear.”

Her son was shocked! “Mamma,” he snapped, “is your faith that strong? Do you really expect God to build a wall around our poor hut so strong and high that it’ll keep out an army?”

“Doesn’t the Bible say that ‘not a sparrow falls to the ground without our Father?’” She replied kindly but surely.

The son did not reply. The daughter-in-law equally was silent. But Bertha could feel the sharp knife of disbelief and ridicule. She wished that they, too, could trust God in this life-and-death situation.

The wintry January wind began to increase, making the three of them think of those poor neighbors and friends who had left their homes in desperation. As the noise of the wind grew louder, they knew that the storm was getting worse. Their friends had no chance of survival now.

Around midnight there was a lull in the storm. It brought an eerie feeling to their already troubled minds. When the big clock in the city hall sounded the first of twelve loud gongs, it, too, gave a pitiful noise as if it was spelling out doom for all who could hear.

After the twelfth gong had ended and the deep silence came again, it was not long before another sound penetrated. It was the sound of music for marching troops. It grew louder and louder as the enemy came closer and closer to the seemingly empty village.

Bertha, her son, and daughter-in-law knew that the fatal time had come. Her son reached over and grasped his wife’s hand. Then he took Bertha’s hand into his other hand. They sat on the floor, holding hands as the army approached.

Bertha, who was now holding her daughter-in-law’s hand, too, squeezed them both and once again said aloud, “Round us a wall our God shall rear, And our proud foes shall quail with fear.” It seemed to have no effect on either of the other two. “Just words of an old foolish lady,” was what the two young people were thinking. But the look on Bertha’s face revealed that, to her, they were anything but foolish.

The tramping feet grew very loud. Shouts from one soldier to another could be heard clearly and distinctly. They were burning and looting every home. It was only a matter of time before the Schmidt home would go up in flames. Shrieks pierced the other tormenting sounds to let them know that some people had remained behind and were now paying for it with their lives.

The sound of crackling flames added to the almost unbearable agony of not being able to see when or by whom their destruction would begin. The uproar continued to grow louder and louder. Death and destruction were everywhere. It was terrifying, for the son and daughter-in-law at least. Bertha silently prayed with bowed head.

After what seemed to be an eternity of horror, the noise began to die down. Footsteps were heard fading away as if the invaders were marching onto the next helpless village. They waited and listened intently. Before long, silence prevailed again.

They agreed to wait until the morning rays of sunlight came before they attempted to look outside. Waiting in deadly silence was almost as bad as hearing the desperate cries of the invader’s victims. But they waited.

When Bertha got up off the floor and walked to a side window, she knew that God still controlled the universe. It was evident that the Lord had not only heard her prayer and declaration of faith, He had answered and honored it.

Bertha fell to her knees once again. Out loud she praised God for His mercy.

Two doubters, who had brought about a partial fulfillment in their lives of Christ’s words that “a man’s foes shall be they of his own household,” joyfully admitted their error through disbelief.

Looking through the shutter, all they could see was the glitter of white snow. From window to window, the view was the same. Each shutter that they could open and see through revealed an identical story.

When they forced open the back door, they found that the snow had blown up in a pile higher than the house. After digging their way out the back and walking around the entire house, it was a thrill beyond words.

The snow had piled up in a gigantic drift all around the house, completely hiding it from sight.

They had been shut in by the coverage of snow! ?


(This story was reprinted from the book, The Hand That Still Intervenes, W. A. Spicer and Helen Spicer Menkel 1982 by Concerned Publications. Permission to reprint this article was graciously granted by the publishers.)


Old Paths is published monthly by Smyrna Gospel Ministries, HC 64 Box 128-B, Welch WV 24801-9606. It is sent free upon request. Office phone: (304) 732-9204. Web site: http://www.smyrna.org.

Editor: Allen Stump - E-mail: editor@smyrna.org.

Associate Editor: Lynnford Beachy - E-mail berean@smyrna.org

This page was last updated: Sunday, May 26, 2013