Coining of the term Bethel

by berrygerry 0 Replies latest watchtower bible

  • berrygerry

    Was reading a bit about the book: The Life and Work of Henry Ward Beecher.

    The Proclaimers book (Ch. 5 page 47) states:

    "In 1908, therefore, several representatives of the Watch Tower Society, including its legal counsel, Joseph F. Rutherford, were sent to New York City. Their objective? To secure property that C. T. Russell had located on an earlier trip. They purchased the old “Plymouth Bethel,” located at 13-17 Hicks Street, Brooklyn. It had served as a mission structure for the nearby Plymouth Congregational Church, where Henry Ward Beecher once served as pastor. The Society’s representatives also purchased Beecher’s former residence, a four-story brownstone at 124 Columbia Heights, a few blocks away.
    The Hicks Street building was remodeled and named the Brooklyn Tabernacle. It housed the Society’s offices and an auditorium. After considerable repairs, Beecher’s former residence at 124 Columbia Heights became the new home of the Society’s headquarters staff. What would it be called? The Watch Tower of March 1, 1909, explained: “The new home we shall call ‘Bethel’ [meaning, “House of God”]."

    The Proclaimers book does mention the Plymouth Bethel, which was renamed the Brooklyn Tabernacle,

    However, it does not mention the name of Beecher's residence, which was mentioned in the May 1, 2009 WT:

    "With the move to Brooklyn in 1909, though, the new residence for the staff members was called Bethel. Why Bethel? The property that the Watch Tower Society purchased at 13-17 Hicks Street was owned by the prominent clergyman Henry Ward Beecher and was known as the Beecher Bethel. Beecher’s former residence, located at 124 Columbia Heights, was also purchased. The March 1, 1909, issue of The Watch Tower reported: “It certainly seems very remarkable that we should get the old Beecher Bethel and then by accident get his former residence. . . . The new home we shall call ‘Bethel,’ and the new office and auditorium, ‘The Brooklyn Tabernacle’; these names will supplant the term ‘Bible House.’”"

    The Proclaimers book makes it sound like the WTS invented the name Bethel.

    However, WTS simply copied the term from Beecher, a prominent clergyman in one of Satan's false religions.


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