Judge Rutherford, True Believer or Con Man?

by VM44 16 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • Terry
    For example. the Watchtower Society doesn't discuss the fact that Rutherford had been dismissed from Bethel by C. T. Russell and was working in a California department store when he read the news of Russell's death. He contacted his buddies who were still in Bethel, and the game was on!

    Ohhhh, that's mighty delicious!

    How do we demonstrate that? Somebody's anecdote? A letter? Article? I would LOVE to know.



  • Terry

    Love the picture of Big Joe by our own Quentin here on JWD!

    Way to go Danny and Quentin!!


  • VM44

    RR was the one who first told us here that Rutherford was working as a lawyer for a department store in California when Russell died.

    "1916-1918 Troubled Years", by James Parkinson


    Joseph Franklin Rutherford (1861-1942): Came from a large Calvinist family; formerly a small-town lawyer in Missouri; at least once appointed to serve as judge in a case; politically active in Democratic politics. Custodian of Pastor Russell’s last will and testament. Apparently dismissed from Bethel in early 1915, lived in Monrovia near Los Angeles and worked as a lawyer for a department store in Los Angeles. Forceful in disposition and persuasive. Debated Rev. John H. Troy at First Baptist Church in Glendale, California, April 21-24, 1915.

    This article is also where we found out about the message sent to Rutherford informing him that Russell had died.

    Menta Sturgeon wired his wife that Pastor Russell had died. A. H. MacMillan intercepted the telegram at the Brooklyn Bethel home and wired J. F. Rutherford, then at a convention in Oakland, Maryland, “The old man is dead. " Rutherford came immediately to Brooklyn and took over.
  • Big Dog
    Big Dog

    How about he was delusional?

  • Wasanelder Once
    Wasanelder Once

    For a guy who wanted to prevent a "Cult of personality" forming around an earthly creature, (Russell) he sure made himself the center of attention. Fraud? No, he was the real deal a religious fanatic with delusions of granduer.

    Religion is a snare and a tax break.


  • Satanus

    He was an a$$hole who got lucky. He found a flock of gullible sheep ripe for fleecing. He also made a few adjustments to make it easier for himself to rule unchallenged.


  • Leolaia
    Apparently dismissed from Bethel in early 1915, lived in Monrovia near Los Angeles and worked as a lawyer for a department store in Los Angeles.

    Yeah, this is backed up by census data. We know that his wife Mary and his son Malcolm lived at 160 N. Primrose Avenue, Monrovia, Los Angeles, CA in 1930, and the 1920 census shows her living in Los Angeles as well.

    From the thread on Rutherford's estranged wife and son (who became an attorney like his old dad):


    As for the liquor issue, there are separate personal accounts by those who sold liquor to Rutherford or claimed to know people who did (including one documented by Dr. Penton); I think Farkel has more or better info on this. Meanwhile, there is also the testimony of Olin and Phoebe Moyle in the Moyle case relating to the consumption of liquor at Bethel and Rutherford's attitude towards those who didn't drink.

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