C.T. Russell, Occultist

by metatron 32 Replies latest jw friends

  • Balaamsass2

    The 124 Bethel "home" Library had quite a selection of books on witchcraft and the occult.......

    Just read any of Russel's "Studies in the Scriptures". We had a set, some crazy stuff.

  • Kosonen

    In the "Proclaimers" chapter 10 it reads about Russell:

    "As a youth, Russell had joined the Congregational Church and was active in its work, but the unreasonableness of traditional dogmas led to his becoming a skeptic. He found that what he had been taught could not be defended from the Bible in a satisfying way. So he discarded the dogmas of church creed and, with them, the Bible. Next, he explored leading Oriental religions, but they too proved unsatisfying. Then he began to wonder if perhaps the Bible was being misrepresented by Christendom’s creeds. Encouraged by what he heard one evening at an Adventist meeting, he began a systematic study of the Scriptures. What he saw unfolding before him was indeed the inspired Word of God."

    What are oriental religions here really about? Was it in fact Freemasonry he studied?

  • vienne

    From Schulz and de Vienne's Separate Identity volume 1:

    "Both E. D. Stewart and J. F. Rutherford suggest that he devoted much time, even years, to the study of Oriental religions. Stewart wrote that “the next few years were devoted to the investigation of the claims of the leading Oriental religions,” and Rutherford said “he devoted much time” to the investigation. Neither claim is correct. Stewart’s claim is untenable because of the known chronology. Even if Russell had devoted every waking hour to reading Oriental religion, no more than months would have passed. Rutherford’s claim is equally unsupportable simply from the standpoint of available time. P. S. L. Johnson, one of Russell’s associates, suggests that his study of Oriental religion was brief and limited by a rejection of what he saw as ‘absurdities.’ Johnson says Russell began his investigation with Chinese religious thought, rejecting it because of a creation story. “That was enough of the Chinese religion for him!” Johnson wrote, adding that “worse absurdities … made him reject Hindooism and Buddhism.” He rejected “Mohammedanism” at least partly because it was based on the Old Testament. An examination of Russell’s Plan of the Ages shows Johnson is correct."

    Freemasonry is not an oriental religion. The claim that Russell was a mason as been debunked here many times.

  • Sea Breeze
    Sea Breeze

    The Watchtower and the Pyramids LINK

    Lady Queenborough's book occult theocracy on pg.737 records C.T. Russell's Masonic membership (published in 1933). While this book seems to be the only evidence of his membership the insignia and words used are undeniable. The use of the terms 'society' and 'brotherhood' are used today among the witnesses which show Masonic terminology was carried over from Russell.

    Through Russell the Watchtower called the pyramid God's Stone Witness and Prophet. ( Thy kingdom Come 1891 and 1905 ed. p.17) They claimed: "Its wonderful correspondencies with the Bible leave no room for doubt that the same divine inspirer of the prophets and apostles inspired this 'Witness' also." (ibid p.362)

    1897 "...this measurement is 3416 inches, symbolizing 3416 years.... This calculation shows A.D. 1874 as marking the beginning of the period of trouble...." (Russell, Studies in the Scriptures: Thy Kingdom Come, Series III, p. 342, 1897 edition [1916 edition changed to read: "We find it to be 3457 inches, symbolizing 3457 years.... Thus the Pyramid witnesses that the close of 1914 will be the beginning of the time of trouble...."]This was calculated as 1915 in (Studies Vol.3 1913 ed. P.342) note: the measurement was the length of an interior passageway discovered inside the Pyramids. It has no reference in Scripture.)

    Chapter title; "The testimony of God’s stone Witness and prophet, the great pyramid in Egypt." (Studies Vol.3 1903 ed. P.313)

    At this same time we find the Society involved in astrology as well as pyramidology, all considered the occult. "When Uranus and Jupiter meet in the humane sign of Aquarius in 1914, the long-promised era will have made a fair start in the work of setting man free to work out his own salvation, and will insure the ultimate realization of dreams and ideals of all poets and sages in history." (Watchtower, May 1, 1903, pp. 130-131; p.3184 Reprints)

    "…this date,1910, indicated by the pyramid…we may accept as correct the testimony of the great pyramid, that the last members of the body or bride’ of Christ will have been tested and accepted and will have passed beyond the vail before the close of AD 1910." (Studies Vol.3 early ed. P.364)

    "In the passages of the great pyramid of Gizeh the agreement of one or two measurements with present truth chronology might be accidental, but the correspondency of dozens of measurements proves the same God designed both pyramid and plan…" (WatchTower 6/15/1922 p.187)

    "The great pyramid of Egypt, standing as a silent and inanimate witness of the Lord, is a messenger; and its testimony speaks with great eloquence concerning the divine plan." (WT 5/15/1925 p.148)

    Almost unanimously all of Russell's dates were taken from his studies on the pyramid (1878,1881,1910,1914,1915,1918). Is it any wonder they got the dates wrong. Yet they wrote it was God's dates not ours.

    Based on Watchtower claims, the Great Pyramid was near and dear to the hearts of Jehovah’s Witnesses. They relied on it to learn of God's plans just as they would the bible. Imagine their shock when in the late 1920's the Watchtower published articles condemning those who believed this pyramid was inspired by God. In 1930, they said, "let no one today add to his prophecy by saying that a pile of stone in the land of Egypt constitutes God's witness." (Light book, p.286 1930)

    The Watchtower lashed out at those who had fallen for the teaching of the Great Pyramid. Did they admit responsibility from their founder for deceiving Jehovah's Witnesses over the years, adding to God's prophetic word? No, just like they have done for the other prophecies they instead blamed the Witnesses themselves for believing this false doctrine! For instance the Society declared," … they have not discerned the distinction between the Devil's organization and God's organization…"and accused such Jehovah's Witnesses of "not following after Christ."(WT Nov.15 p.340 1928) They also said, 'If the pyramid is not mentioned in the Bible, then following its teachings is being led by vain philosophy and false science and not following after Christ.") (ibid p.341) "Those who have devoted themselves to the pyramid… the mind of such were turned away from Jehovah and his word." (WT 11/15/1928 p.344) In this we would agree with them.

    What was accepted under their founder they were now distancing themselves. Take for example the Cross and Crown logo which had been provided through Russell, later was abandoned since it was"...to Brother Rutherford's mind Babylonish and should be discontinued." He wrote they are, "...not only unnecessary but objectionable, "(1975 Yearbook, p. 148).

    They also claimed that the pyramid is Satan's Bible, and not 'God's Stone witness." "Then Satan put his knowledge into dead stone, which may be called Satan's Bible, not Gods stone witness…" (WT, 11/15/1928 p.344)

    "It is more reasonable to conclude that the great pyramid of gizeh, as well as the other pyramids…were built…under the direction of Satan the devil." (WT, 11/15/1928 p.344). Does this mean the dates that Russell was calculating for the end of the world were satanically inspired? Does this make the founder of the Organization a pagan?

    I found this on the website: Witches and Pagans . com

    Q: What's the difference between a Jehovah's Witness and a Wiccan?

    A: Three Watchtowers.

  • vienne

    More nonsense. Russell's date system was derived from Anglican writers, especially E. B. Elliot's Horae. Russell saw substantiation of his beliefs in the Pyramid but saw it as a poor basis on which to base one's faith. In 1881 Russell addressed widely spread expectations concerning 1881 saying that his belief did not rely on pyramid measurements: "Now to us, these things seem a poor and weak foundation for the hopes built upon them. Our belief that the Lord is present, is based on the “more sure word of prophecy” to which Peter said, we would do well to take heed." [C. T. Russell: The Year 1881, Zion’s Watch Tower, May 1881, page 5.]

    Pyramidology was current in his day and many well-known Protestant clergy believed similarly. This included Seiss, a Lutheran whose works are still reprinted as classics of Christian exposition, and C. Larkin, a Baptist whose works are still admired. H. J. Lambert, once a prominent Australian Baptist clergyman, told the Hill Street Baptist Church that the Great Pyramid pointed unmistakably to 1881; it wouldn’t mark the end of the world, but a “great change would take place in that year.” [Church Anniversary – Lecture on the Great Pyramid, The Kapunda, South Australia, Herald¸ May 23, 1879.] In 1877 the Advent Christian Church [Not SDA] published a booklet advocating similar views.

    Schulz: Separate Identity, vol 2 observes:

    "In volume one, we asserted considerable interest in the Great Pyramid as a prophetic witness to “God’s Plan.” Interest reached its peak as 1881 approached with lectures and booklets proliferating. A detailed history of pyramidology is inappropriate here. A few examples will do. James French, a Baptist clergyman, presented two lectures on the pyramid’s significance to the Baptist Ministers’ Conference. The first lecture, delivered in New York City. Baptist clergy listened attentively for an hour and a quarter, thanking him and arranging for part two. French turned his lecture into a series of articles for Baptist Family Magazine.

    "French was far from unique. Dr. Rufus W. Clark, a Reformed clergyman, also advocated pyramidology. J. A. Seiss lectured with some regularity through 1883. Edson Rogers, a Congregational clergyman from Cincinnatus, New York, did as well. Newspapers of the period note numerous lectures on the topic by clergymen, self-appointed and real professors and “experts,” all of whom saw the pyramid as a prophetic witness and many of whom pointed to 1881 as a year of destiny. Watch Tower and Barbourite belief may seem strange from our vantage point, but compared with contemporary belief, it was tame.

    "As late as August 1881, S. A Chaplin, editor of The Restitution, suggested that “the Great Pyramid indicates some great political event in 1881-2. A great change in human affairs is impending and at the door.” Barbour gave his readers a summary of Charles Piazzi Smyth’s pyramid measurements, concluding that this was “an interesting coincidence ... as the floor measure points to 1881, for, as we believe, the commencement of the return of literal Israel; the 6 years, ‘impending,’ is the exact measure of the time from the spring of 1875, where according to the jubilee cycles, the ‘times of restitution,’ should have begun. Again: The mouth of the well, the type of Christ's death, is 33 inches from the Grand Gallery; and this 33 inches added to the measure of the Grand Gallery floor 1881, make 1914, the date of the end of ‘The Times of the Gentiles.’”

    Russell's view of the Pyramid had nothing to do with spiritism, but with the belief that Melchizedek built the pyramid to stand a a prophetic reference. In its day Pryamidology attracted many clergy. Russell followed the crowd, persuaded by the coincidence that some measurements matched the chronology he adopted from Elliot and a host of other clergy, primarily Anglicans and Presbyterians.

  • Sea Breeze
    Sea Breeze
    The 124 Bethel "home" Library had quite a selection of books on witchcraft and the occult.......

    @Balamsass2 - I presume that you saw these books yourself? If so, about how many of such books do estimate as being there?

  • Sea Breeze
    Sea Breeze

    Here is some additional research indicating Russel was a Freemason:


  • vienne

    Read the complete text and you will see it wasn't a claim to being a member of a mazonic lodge.

  • Sea Breeze
    Sea Breeze

    I think that CT Russell and the WT are known for starting off a topic in one direction and then end up doing the exact opposite. This provides future quotes for either position that can later be taken out of context so that the manipulator can have it both ways, as needed.

    I can't help but notice vienne that you seem to be quite an apologist for CT Russell and the WT in general prior to the Rutherford takeover. Isn't there anything that makes you question Russels' claim for having been appointed as the "sacred" Laodician Messenger and THAT SERVANT in charge of all of Christ's interests? It makes me wonder if your family is associated with one of the offshoots of the early followers of Russel?

  • LV101

    Seaby -- very interesting video/thanks for the share.

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