Is this the earliest WT reference to 1975?

by Splash 30 Replies latest watchtower bible

  • ScenicViewer

    (w44 9/15 p.280 par.28)

    They do not say, 'It is a long time yet to the wind-up, and, according to the present understanding of Bible chronology, six thousand years of human history will end first in the coming seventies and till then it is a long stretch to serve the Lord continuously and undividedly.'

    Witnesses today will typically deny that 1975 was supposed to be the end of the world as we know it, Armageddon, or anything of a final nature. But notice that in 1944 the Society was referring to the 1970's as the "wind-up."

    Wording like that clearly signifies the end.

  • alcyone

    w42 8/1 227:

    It is of God's great mercy that he has not com-
    pletely wiped out the human race ere now for all
    its unrighteousness which stains every page of its
    history. Sober-thinking men ought to tremble at the
    thought that he will wipe out all the worldly nations at
    the impending Armageddon fight and thereby at last,
    after a wait of six thousand years, vindicate bis name

    It seems they started to prepare the stage for 1975 fiasco even earlier...

    Only I am not sure whether they referred to the past event (i.e. completed 6,000) or to the future 1975.

  • Finkelstein

    There is no questioning to establishing the fact if the WTS propagated that the end of this supposed 6000 years of mankind's existence was to invoke the start of something grandiose such as the GT or even Armageddon.

    The WTS has built itself on a foundation of false biblical teachings and doctrines or in other words sensationalized and commercialized hype.

    They used this as just another marketing strategy and reflectively it worked.

    Never under estimate the ignorance or stupidity of the segemnt of the general public.

    The WTS knew it was there and just how to exploit it toward its own means.

  • sparky1

    It looks to me like someone was laying the 'foundation' for their 'failed legacy' as soon as the Judge dropped dead!

  • Finkelstein

    It was C T Russell who laid the foundational stone work to this religious publishing house supported by his composed bible interpretations and the real reason to how and why this organization grew as it did.

    Superimposed fictitious dating was instrumental and exploited many times by this religious publishing organization.

  • sparky1

    Superimposed fictitious dating was instrumental and exploited many times by this religious publishing organization.

    My point exactly. C.T. Russell FAILED, Judge Rutherford FAILED and now it was Fred Franz's turn for FAILURE

  • Finkelstein

    As its known the WTS main directors have not been inherently engaged in accurate bible theological interpretations, they have been more emerged into what they can be used to draw people's attention and to further exploit the present belief in the bible as a proactive means to proliferate its own published goods.

  • careful

    I remember finding this quotation in the 1944 WT back when I was active, young, and single years ago, back when I had time to do such research. In fact, I was researching the whole 1975 thing on my own. After I found this WT study article, I interviewed one old bro. in the congo who went back to before Rutherford's death. He was surprised that I asked him about it but got very happy, even excited, that I did. He said, "Yes, there were some who felt that the preaching work was suddenly not as vital then, since according to the 'new light' revealed at the time, the end could not have come for 30+ more years. That WT study article was to chastise them not to have such a wrong attitude."

    It really caused me to pause and consider how this change came about and what it meant at the time. First, how it came about. The Judge had gradually rejected many of Russell's beliefs and teachings (Christmas, the cross, the importance of modern (earthly) Israel in prophecy, some of his chronologies like the jubilees cycles, etc.), but for some reason had held on to the 6000 years from Adam's creation idea (as ending the 1870s). Fred Franz, as Rutherford's main advisor, had evidently dissented from the Judge's feelings here, so when Rutherford died, Franz, with Knorr's approval of course, set to change some doctrine. One of these was this chronology. This is what led to that 1944 WT study article.

    Second, more important is the role this doctrinal change played in WTS history. Stop and think about it. Some significant institutional projects were begun, ones that would take a long time to complete, or that showed some long term commitment. 1. Gilead School. 2. Translating the Bible afresh (the NWT). 3. The Theocratic Ministry School, that is, training thousands of people to handle witnessing at the door and conducting Bible studies on their own. All of these indicate that to Knorr and Franz, the end was not just immediately around the corner. They saw a 30+ year window of opportunity to do the preaching work. If you look at the publications carefully after Rutherford's death, you will not see the "Armageddon is any day now" drumbeat that one sees today, that is, until Fred Franz began doing it in the 1960s, in that book, Life Everlasting in the Freedom of the Sons of God, that is generally viewed as having started all the 1975 hype. In fact, it goes back much further, to this change in chronology that is reflected in the WT article that Splash has put up.

    Finally, the whole 1975 debacle takes on a new dimension. We have Fred Franz in the mid 1940s coming to believe that the end could not come for 30+ more years. As the time drew nearer and nearer for, in his mind, the earliest possible date for the big A to arrive, he become more convinced that it had to come then. I suspect that this was a major factor in his speculations that caused the whole thing. If you look carefully at his pronouncements back then, you'll see that he was still dabbling in that jubilees cycle thing again, though he never really took off with it like the 6000 years from Adam chronology.

    What I am so amazed at is that no one has ever recognized this till Splash's discovery, not Ray Franz who is supposed to have lived all thru this, not Penton who is supposed to have done all this research on the 1975 debacle, not anyone else. It's been missed by everyone, except perhaps that one old bro. that I interviewed years ago. Nice work, Splash for bringing this to light!

  • ttdtt

    Stay alive till 75 - is my motto!

  • dropoffyourkeylee
    It is curious how often the leaders of a religious belief of the 'end' build up their hype with the end date about 30-40 years in the future when they will be old. It's like they are setting their life's work ahead of them. Examples, William Miller 1844, Charles Russell 1914, Fred Franz 1975.

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