1914 Doctrine is FALSE -- Questions for JW's

by UnDisfellowshipped 90 Replies latest jw friends

  • St George of England
    St George of England

    I think a lot of this nonsense was poached by C T Russell from William Miller (Millerites) who was the start of all the Adventist type movements. He published all these calculations and diagrams of Daniels prophesies and C T just copied them.


    William Conley
    President before Russell. 1881-84.

    And written out of the WTS literature ever since except for a one line mention in the Proclaimers book. Needless to say he never made it to the new DVD!

  • Titus

    The Second Adventists were "the faithful and discreet slave" in those days, when Russell was young.

    According to the new DVD "Faith in Action"......


  • thetrueone

    A little information about W. Conley

    Charles Taze Russell was not "THE" founder of the Watch Tower Society. Russell was "A" founder. The FIRST PRESIDENT of Zion's Watch Tower Tract Society was actually a prominent Pittsburgh businessman named William Henry Conley. The Watch Tower Society was actually founded by TWO of Pittsburgh's religious families -- the RUSSELLs and the CONLEYs.

    There were five original "Bible Students". The three "Russells" were Charles Taze Russell, his sister, Margaret, and probably more importantly at the time, his father, Joseph L. Russell.

    The other two original "Bible Students" were William Henry Conley and his wife Sarah Conley, who at that time (early-mid 1870s) had an infant daughter.

    Despite everything that has been published over the past century about the Russells being the "money source" behind the founding of the Watch Tower Society, it was actually William Henry Conley who gave the Watch Tower Society its financial push-start.

    Henry Conley was co-owner of RITER-CONLEY COMPANY, a prosperous Pittsburgh metal fabrication company which gradually grew over the years into a highly respected WORLDWIDE supplier to the drilling, mining, manufacturing, and marine industries. After Henry Conley's death in 1897, the company was incorporated as Riter-Conley Mfg Co Inc, and was eventually absorbed and re-absorbed into Bethlehem Steel Corporation.

    The Conley and Russell families' theological foundations came from the then "Second Adventist" movement, which consisted of four or five splinter groups that arose out of the failed Millerite Movement of the 1840s. The Conley and Russell families associated with one of those splinters -- the Advent Christian Church -- during the late 1860s and early 1870s, but due to their acceptance of some of the beliefs of some of the other Second Adventist splinters, the Conley and Russell families eventually started their own group, while trying to maintain good relations with other area Second Adventists.

    Charles Taze Russell was designated their "pastor", and while he is credited with starting the Watch Tower magazine in July 1879, just as Henry Conley was named the Society's first President when it was founded in 1881, Conley no doubt played a significant, though behind-the-scenes, role in the founding of the group's magazine.

    However, the Conleys and the Russells parted company theologically sometime around 1882, after Charles Taze Russell accepted a doctrinal position which only a few radicals in the Second Adventist Movement had accepted -- the denial of the Trinity Doctrine.

    Henry and Sarah Conley gradually withdrew both their financial and personal support of Zion's Watch Tower Tract Society, and when the Society was changed from an "association" to a "corporation" in 1884, the Conleys had totally removed themselves from the picture, although the Conleys tried to remain "friends" with the Russells.

    The Conleys eventually rejoined Pittsburgh's Presbyterian Community, but retained many of the Second Adventists' beliefs such as the imminent Second Advent of Jesus Christ, and the Second Adventists "time" prophecy interpretations. However, the Conleys rejected Charles Taze Russell's attempts to set exact dates for fulfillment of certain prophecies.

    By the latter 1880s, Henry and Sarah Conley, while remaining Presbyterians, started using their financial means to help Pittsburgh area members of what would eventually become the Christian and Missionary Alliance. By the mid 1890s, Henry Conley was appointed to the National Board of the CMA in New York. The Conleys even funded a CMA mission in Jerusalem, in addition to several here in the United States.

    After Henry Conley died in 1897, Sarah Conley used the proceeds from his estate to continue to help the Pittsburgh area CMA affiliates and former affiliates (which had splintered over the years), but Sarah Conley donated the bulk of the estate to the former CMA affiliated couple, the Pridegeons, who used the Conley fortune to found and operate the Pittsburgh Bible Society, which continued until the 1970s.

  • Titus

    Thanks for information, TTO. Very interesting!

  • UnDisfellowshipped

    Thank you TrueOne!

    And I thought I knew almost everything about the history of the Organization! Wow I learn something new everyday!

  • thetrueone

    Cheers mate

  • St George of England
    St George of England

    According to Barbara Anderson's reseach, W H Conley put in $3500, Joseph Russell $1000 and C T Russell $500 to start the Zions WT in 1881. WHC became President, JR Vice President and CT Sec-Treasurer and co-editor of the WT with his wife Maria.

    When Conley died CT never even reported it in the WT. He wanted him totally written out of its history.

    Incidently the memorial celebration was always at Conley's house up to 1892, J Russells house in 1893 and at the tabernacle thereafter.


  • UnDisfellowshipped

    And here is some fine Spiritual Food at the Proper Time for all of us to digest in regards to 1914:

    The Watchtower, October 15th 1990, Pages 16-20:

    On Friday morning, October 2, 1914, Russell announced to the headquarters staff of the Watch Tower Society in Brooklyn, New York: “The Gentile times have ended; their kings have had their day.” This was greeted with enthusiastic applause by the family at Bethel, “the house of God.”

    4 What justification did C. T. Russell and his associates have for being so joyful on that October morning? Where does the expression “Gentile Times” originate? What evidence is there that the Gentile Times ended in October 1914? And how should that affect you?

    Jerusalem and the Gentile Times

    5 The expression “Gentile Times,” or “appointed times of the nations,” comes from Jesus’ great prophecy concerning the destruction of Jerusalem. (Luke 21:5-36, King James Version) Two days prior to giving it, Jesus presented himself to the inhabitants of Jerusalem as their Messiah. While he humbly rode upon an ass toward the city, crowds of Jews shouted in triumph, just as Zechariah 9:9 foretold. “Blessed is the One coming as the King in Jehovah’s name,” they cried aloud.—Luke 19:28-40.

    6 But Jesus knew that public opinion would soon be swayed against him because of the murderous hatred by Jerusalem’s religious leaders under the influence of their father, the Devil. (Genesis 3:15; John 8:44) Shortly thereafter, on Nisan 14, a crowd of Jews clamored for Jesus’ death. “His blood come upon us and upon our children,” they cried to the reluctant Roman governor. (Matthew 27:24, 25) Instead of accepting Jesus as Messianic King, the chief priests declared: “We have no king but Caesar.” (John 19:15) The true Messiah was then nailed to a torture stake to die, having been falsely charged as a seditionist against Rome and a blasphemer against the God of the Jews.—Mark 14:61-64; Luke 23:2; John 18:36; 19:7.

    7 Divine wrath was certain to come upon the inhabitants of Judea because of their terrible bloodguilt. Jerusalem, with its magnificent temple, could no longer be called “the city of the great King,” Jehovah. (Matthew 5:35; Luke 13:33-35) Some days before Jesus’ death, his disciples spoke admiringly of that city’s temple buildings. In response, Jesus predicted: “As for these things that you are beholding, the days will come in which not a stone upon a stone will be left here and not be thrown down.”—Luke 21:5, 6.

    8 Jesus’ disciples asked in surprise: “Teacher, when will these things actually be, and what will be the sign when these things are destined to occur?” (Luke 21:7) In reply Jesus accurately predicted the events that led up to Jerusalem’s destruction, and he added this significant phrase: “Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.” (Luke 21:8-24, KJ) Jesus thus pointed ahead to something beyond Jerusalem’s destruction—something that had to wait “until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.” With reference to “the sign,” Jesus said: “When you see these things occurring, know that the kingdom of God is near.” (Luke 21:31) Therefore, the sign was to have a dual fulfillment. The first, or small-scale, fulfillment would indicate that ‘the desolating of Jerusalem had drawn near.’ (Luke 21:20) The second, and larger, fulfillment would come when the Gentile Times had ended, and it would indicate that “the kingdom of God is near.”—Compare Matthew 24:3.

    Earthly Jerusalem Replaced by a Superior City

    9 By saying “Jerusalem will be trampled on by the nations, until the appointed times of the nations are fulfilled,” was Jesus suggesting that the earthly city would eventually be restored to divine favor? No. After the murder of God’s beloved Son, earthly Jerusalem lost its special status forever and has been replaced by a far superior “city of the living God, heavenly Jerusalem.”—Hebrews 12:22; Matthew 23:37, 38; 27:50, 51.

    10 The expression “heavenly Jerusalem” is used in the Bible to describe the indestructible heavenly Kingdom to which anointed Christians have been called. (Hebrews 11:10; 12:22, 28) When the apostle Paul wrote this, the earthly city with its temple was still very much admired by Jews. Thus, Paul reminded Hebrew Christians that “we do not have here a city that continues, but we are earnestly seeking the one to come.”—Hebrews 13:14.

    Why Called Heavenly Jerusalem

    11 Jerusalem was long the capital of the nation of Israel, whose kings were said to “sit upon Jehovah’s throne.” (1 Chronicles 29:23) Also, Jehovah made a covenant with David that the kingship would remain in his family forever. Just as modern-day capitals, such as Washington, Moscow, Canberra, and Pretoria, are used to identify their respective governments, so Jerusalem is used in the Bible to represent the Davidic kingdom.—2 Samuel 7:16; Luke 1:32.

    12 David’s kingdom had a limited domain, extending only to the God-defined boundaries of ancient Israel. Earthly Jerusalem was therefore only a type of the real Messianic Kingdom that would rule from heaven and have the whole earth as its domain. (Psalm 2:2, 7, 8; Daniel 7:13, 14; 2 Timothy 4:18) Thus, the book The Time Is At Hand, published by the Watch Tower Society in 1889, clearly stated: “The term ‘Times of the Gentiles’ was applied by our Lord to that interval of earth’s history between the removal of the typical Kingdom of God, the Kingdom of Israel (Ezek. 21:25-27), and the introduction and establishment of its antitype, the true Kingdom of God.”

    Gentile Times—How Long?

    13 The typical kingdom of God was overthrown by Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar in 607 B.C.E. By the seventh Jewish month, about the middle of October, the land lay desolate. (2 Kings 25:8, 9, 22, 25, 26) In proof that this happened by divine permission, Jehovah God gave Nebuchadnezzar a dream. It involved a tree that was chopped down and allowed to grow again after a period of “seven times.” The dream had an initial fulfillment when Nebuchadnezzar was restored to his throne after a temporary state of madness.—Daniel 4:10-17, 28-36.

    14 However, the theme of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream showed that its main fulfillment involved God’s typical kingdom, which that Gentile king had been permitted to ‘chop down.’ The dream concluded with this statement of purpose: “That people living may know that the Most High is Ruler in the kingdom of mankind and that to the one whom he wants to, he gives it and he sets up over it even the lowliest one of mankind.”—Daniel 4:17.

    15 Only one person came to be qualified in all respects to be called “the lowliest one of mankind.” The only-begotten Son of God proved himself to be such by willingly leaving his heavenly glory to be born as a human, as Jesus, who suffered the most humiliating and cruel death at Satan’s hand. (Philippians 2:3, 5-11) After his resurrection back to heavenly glory, Jesus had to wait until the period of seven times of Gentile rule ended before being enthroned as the Messianic King over mankind.—Hebrews 10:12, 13.

    16 But how did Jehovah’s Witnesses come to understand the length of the seven times? The Bible reveals that “a time and times and half a time,” or three and a half times, equals 1,260 days. (Revelation 12:6, 14) Therefore, double that number, or seven times, would amount to 2,520 days. On the basis of the prophetic guide of “a day for a year,” the seven times would equal 2,520 years. (Numbers 14:34; Ezekiel 4:6) By this calculation, the Gentile Times, which started in October 607 B.C.E., ended 2,520 years later in October 1914.

    17 In October 1914, Jehovah God set his beloved Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, on the throne in the heavenly Kingdom. At last, the Revelation vision of the Christian apostle John started to become a reality, and the announcement could be made: “The kingdom of the world did become the kingdom of our Lord [Jehovah] and of his Christ, and he [Jehovah] will rule as king forever and ever.” (Revelation 1:10; 4:1; 11:15) What glorious news this is and what reason for the greatest happiness on the part of all joint heirs and subjects of that Kingdom!—Revelation 11:17.

    18 True, for most of mankind, there has not been much happiness on earth since 1914. But the woeful conditions on earth are proof that Satan’s rule is about to end. How do we know this? The book of Revelation indicated that the establishment of God’s Kingdom would result in a war in heaven. Satan and his demons were to be cast out of heaven and limited to the vicinity of our earth. After seeing this victory in a prophetic vision, John heard a loud voice say: “Be glad, you heavens and you who reside in them! Woe for the earth and for the sea, because the Devil has come down to you, having great anger, knowing he has a short period of time.”—Revelation 12:1-12.

    19 Worsening world conditions since 1914 are proof that John’s vision has become a reality and that the end of all humans who refuse to submit to God’s sovereignty is drawing perilously near. (Luke 21:10, 11, 25-32) How thrilling it is to be alive at this wonderful time when Jehovah God, the Almighty, will settle the great issue of his sovereignty over the earth! Then, earth will be transformed into a beautiful paradise, and righteous human survivors will be uplifted to perfection. Even the dead will be raised and given the opportunity to qualify for everlasting life.—Revelation 20:1-3, 12, 13; 21:3-5.

    A Modern Need for Adjustment

    20 For 38 years prior to 1914, the Bible Students, as Jehovah’s Witnesses were then called, pointed to that date as the year when the Gentile Times would end. What outstanding proof that is that they were true servants of Jehovah! Yet, like first-century servants of God, they also had some wrong expectations. For example, they expected that the full number of anointed Christians would be raised to heaven by October 1914. They also thought that the war that started in 1914 would lead directly on to the end of Satan’s world.

    21 In time, though, anointed Christians realized that there was much work for them to do on earth. Because of their persistence in public witnessing during World War I, they experienced vicious persecution from the political authorities, urged on by Christendom’s clergy. (Psalm 2:1-6) The activity of true Christians was dealt a severe blow on June 21, 1918, when leading officials of the Watch Tower Society in the United States were sentenced to 20 years’ imprisonment under false charges.

    22 World War I came to a sudden end in November 1918. Then, on March 25, 1919, the officials of the Watch Tower Society were released from prison. They were later fully exonerated. An unexpected period of peace opened up for those faithful anointed Christians, similar to the opportunities that presented themselves to Christ’s early disciples after they were empowered by holy spirit in 33 C.E.—Acts 2:17-21, 41.

    23 Ever since 1919, faithful anointed Christians as a group have zealously obeyed the command involved in Jesus’ words at Matthew 24:14: “This good news of the kingdom will be preached in all the inhabited earth for a witness to all the nations; and then the end will come.” As a result, nearly four million of Christ’s “other sheep” have devoted their lives to serving Jehovah in unity with the anointed remnant. (John 10:16) Christendom, under the influence of its clergy, continues to reject the Kingdom message. Its preference for human political schemes and its persecution of Jehovah’s Witnesses parallel the shocking treatment of Christ by the first-century inhabitants of Judea. Just as Jehovah executed his judgment upon Jerusalem, so he will do to antitypical unfaithful Jerusalem, namely, Christendom. And as the generation that heard Christ’s judgment message lived to experience the destruction he foretold, so the present generation since 1914 “will by no means pass away” before the foretold “great tribulation” comes.—Matthew 24:21, 22, 34.

    24 What must we do to survive the great tribulation and live on into God’s new world? Regardless of wrong expectations any of us may have had, we must guard against falling asleep as to our Christian duties. (Habakkuk 2:3; 1 Thessalonians 5:1-6) Those able to recall events from 1914 are becoming ever fewer. Thus, we need to be alert; there is no time to lose. (Matthew 24:42) All who want to survive the end of Satan’s wicked world must act now in a way that shows agreement with the inspired words: “We thank you, Jehovah God, the Almighty, . . . because you have taken your great power and begun ruling as king.”—Revelation 11:17.

  • exwhyzee

    Wow...see what you started UnDisfellowshipped ? just ask a question and a veritable waterfall of information comes forth. I like the way you laid out all your questions and points, something I haven't had the time to do yet. I'm going to borrow them if you don't mind !

    Thanks TrueOne...40+years as a Witness and I never once heard about W.H Conley! And to think I would have once laid down my life for this organization...what else are they not telling us about ?

  • UnDisfellowshipped


    Absolutely! You can use the list I posted. :-)

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