Dunsscot - More on Russell as FDS

by Amazing 3 Replies latest jw friends

  • Amazing

    Dunsscot - More on Russell as FDS

    Duns: AlanF provided excellent source references to demonstrate that Charles Taze Russell (CTR) was considered the exclusive Faithful and Wise Servant (aka: Faithful and Discreet Slave[FDS]). After reading the historical material he cited and quoted, I found this more recent additional confirmation:

    ”The view generally held, that Pastor Russell himself was the “faithful and wise servant” of Matthew 25:45-47, created considerable difficulty for some years.”

    - Jehovah’s Witnesses in the Divine Purpose, p.69, published 1959, Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Pennsylvania

    The Footnotes at the bottom of pages 68 and 69 are some of the same as AlanF cited: Nov. 1881 Wt, p.5 and The Battle of Armageddon, 1897, pp.613, 1614; The Finished Mystery, 1917, pp. 53,125, 237, 416-423; Wt. 1916, p. 377; Wt. 1917, pp. 323, 324; Wt. 1919, p. 103; Wt. 1923, pp. 67, 68.

    So, 43 years after CTR’s death, the Watch Tower Society still recognized the fact that CTR was generally understood to be exclusive FDS. This “general” understanding would not have existed were it not for the cited publications, and for ‘private’ conversations where CTR himself admitted that he believed himself to be that ‘Servant.’ The Bible Students would not have made up such things, and if they had, I am sure that CTR would have made a published correction in the pages of the Watchtower. But, CTR made no such corrections. Thus, by omission, CTR allowed this ‘understanding’ to continue.

    Perhaps, you need to face the facts, and admit that you were in error, and move on to other subjects with AlanF. Admission of error now will speak well of you, and improve your credibility - though badly damaged as it is - when discussing other topics. Admission of error is good for the soul, and is something that the Governing Body has yet to learn.

    "Thinking people" understand what a "folly" it is to fail to see and admit one’s errors. "Intelligent people," with a "good attitude" are not afraid of a "measure" of humility and modesty. If you apply these basic attributes to yourself, as you develop a Christian personality, you "might" be granted everlasting life my son! - Amazing

  • dunsscot

    I posted this information on another thread.

    AF has contended that Russell thought he was the FDS of Matthew 24:45-47. I have yet to see any evidence that Russell claimed to be the "slave." Even some of his opposers have admitted as much. AF has not shown one quote from Russell that proves he thought he was the FDS. But here is one quote that removes all doubt. I will try to post more as I get the chance. From The Time is at Hand - (1889) Volume II-Study V, pp. 163-165:

    "Who, then [in the "harvest"], is a faithful and wise servant, whom his Master shall make* ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season? Blessed that servant whom his Master on coming [erchomai--when he arrives] shall find so doing. Verily, I say unto you, he shall make him ruler over all his goods"--all the vast storehouse of precious truth shall be opened to such **faithful servants**, to arm and supply and feed the entire household of faith.
    But if the servant's heart is not right, he will say, My Master tarries [has not arrived], and may smite [oppose and contradict] his fellow servants [those who differ with him;
    *Sinaitic and Vatican MSS read "shall make."

    ::page 164::
    those, therefore, who are declaring the opposite--My Lord does not tarry, but has come, is present]. Such may eat and drink with the intemperate [become intoxicated with the spirit of the world], but the Master of that servant will come [Greek, heko--will have arrived] in a day not expected, and in an hour in which that servant is not aware, and will cut him off [from being one of the servants privileged to hand meat in due season to the household], and will appoint him his portion with the hypocrites. [Though not a hypocrite but a genuine servant, he must, because unfaithful and overcharged, have his portion with the hypocrites in the perplexity and trouble coming upon Babylon.] "There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth."

    The foregoing, carefully examined, clearly teaches us that in the end of this age there will be ONE CLASS denying that the Lord is present (not denying that he will come sometime, but that he has come), and smiting or harshly opposing those fellow servants who must therefore be teaching the opposite--that the Lord has come. Which is the faithful, truthful servant, and which the one in error, is clearly stated by our Lord. The faithful one whom he finds giving seasonable "meat" will be exalted and given fuller stewardship over the storehouse of truth, with increased ability to bring it forth to the household, while the unfaithful one will be gradually separated and drawn into closer and closer sympathy with the mere professors or hypocrites. And note the fact that the unfaithful is thus cut off, or separated, at a time of which he is not aware--in the harvest time--while his Lord is really present unknown to him, searching for and gathering his jewels. `Matt. 13:30`; `Psa. 50:5`; `Mal. 3:17`; `Matt. 24:31`
    We particularize here, merely to show that, in answer to the question of the disciples about signs and evidences of his second presence, our Lord taught that neither the world nor

    ::page 165::

    the unfaithful servants would be aware of it, until the intense fire of trouble is at least commenced. And the faithful evidently will see him present merely by the eye of faith-- through the Scriptures written aforetime for their learning, to be apprehended as they become due.

    Duns the Scot

    "Nobody is taller than himself or herself."

  • Had Enough
    Had Enough

    We acknowledge the quotes that can be found in early writings of Russel making such statements as in the 1889 quotation you supplied and this one I found in the 1881 WT where he refers to the FDS as "that 'little flock' of consecrated servants".

    However the WTS itself acknowledges the accepted beliefs during that time period in its own Proclaimers Book pg.143, par.1, where it says after the above 1881 quote:

    Over a decade later, however, Brother Russell's wife publicly expressed the idea that Russell himself was the faithful and wise servant. The view that she voiced concerning the identity of the 'faithful servant' came to be generally held by the Bible Students for some 30 years. Brother Russell did not reject their view, but he personally avoided making such an application of the text, emphasizing his opposition to the idea of a clergy class commissioned to teach God's Word in contrast to a lay class that was not thus commissioned. {bold added)

    In "not rejecting their view" he certainly contributed to the then-current belief in his being the FDS even if it was started by his wife. By not saying anything against that idea, he was in effect giving the impression that that was his belief also.

    Also on pg.626, par.2, the WTS states of the time after Russell's death that:

    Many who were sifted out at that time clung to the view that a single individual, Charles Taze Russell, was the "faithful and wise servant".....Particularly following his death, The Watch Tower itself set forth this view for a number of years. In view of the prominent role that Brother Russell had played, it appeared to the Bible Students of that time that this was the case. He did not personally promote the idea, but he did acknowledge the apparent reasonableness of the arguments of those who favored it. He also emphasized, however, that whoever the Lord might use in such a role must be humble as well as zealous to bring glory to the Master, and that if the one chosen by the Lord failed, he would be replaced by another. (bold added)

    So even if Russell didn't say the words "I am the FDS" he certainly helped the idea to exist for a time even narrowing it down to saying "the one chosen", at one time, instead of referring to the FDS as a collective body. That it itself supports the claims that Russell accepted the belief he was the FDS, even though his earlier quotations say otherwise.

  • D wiltshire
    D wiltshire


    So what do you believe about the FDS at this point in time?

    Do you beleive it is all the anointed on earth at any particular time?

    Or do you beleive it is a parable and not a prophecy and was given to make each individual Christian think about what they as Individuals are doing as far as faithfulness to their master?

    Or is it only applied today(at this time) to the WT organization?

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