THE HOUSE OF CARDS
BUILT ON SAND

(Glaring Inconsistencies inSeventh-day Adventist Doctrine)

 

 

By

B. E. Ammi

 

“Copyright © 2006,

All Rights Reserved”

 

UniversalPublishing Association

P.O. Box 17654

Plantation, Fl. 33318

 

 

 

 

The Purpose of this Document

           “Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD.” Isa. 1:18.

“Doth our law judge any man, before it hear him, and know what he doeth?John 7:51.

“These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.” Acts 17:11.

            This document is a response to the findings of the Church in regard to the teachings of the Shepherd’s Rod message.  These findings have existed generally unchallenged for the past 50 years.  Another document entitled, Secret Tribunals of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, thoroughly examines and responds to the General Conference’s version of the history of the Rod. An exhaustive process of research regarding the topics involved has been in process for over two years, from the S.D.A. Denomination’s standpoint, and from the Rod itself in the light of the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy.  That research having been recently completed, we are now ready to report the full truth of the matter to those who are honest enough to hear both sides before taking a stand.

            “The present attitude of the church is not pleasing to God.  There has come in a self-confidence that has led them to feel no necessity for more truth and greater light.  We are living at a time when Satan is at work on the right hand and on the left, before and behind us; and yet as a people we are asleep.  God wills that a voice shall be heard arousing His people to action.” – Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 5, p. 709.

“Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.” 1 Thess. 5:21.

Opening Arguments

            The honest, and perhaps even the most skeptical, will find themselves shaken to the very core of their being upon concluding a close investigation of this document. The reader will come to discover hard facts that will be more surprising to him than the news of the Persian army being inside of Babylon’s walls was to Belshazzar.  The readers will learn that some of the major doctrines that the Shepherd’s Rod teaches were once taught, endorsed and disseminated by the denomination through its publications.  We will also learn that the denomination has used the Rod’s position on an Ellen White passage to attempt to save itself from severe public embarrassment after vigorously using the same passage against it.  We will further discover that the General Conference has deliberately suppressed evidence that vindicated the Rod’s position and proved fatal to their own.  Finally, the readers will be treated to a brief, comprehensive revelation of present truth on the subjects discussed so that he is not left as one “which has no hope” (I Thess. 4:13).

Irrefutable proof of these bold claims are forthcoming to the ones who will “follow on to know the Lord.”  We will begin our analysis by shining a spotlight on

 

The Track Record of the Seventh-day Adventist Ministry.

            In accurately forecasting end-time events, even without date setting, the track record of the Seventh-day Adventist Church is dismal.  Nothing makes this more evident than the discussion of the role of the Middle East in end-time Bible prophecy.  This subject is the Achilles heel of the denomination. The Sabbath, state of the dead, and other fundamental doctrines of the church are sound and Bible-based. So far as prophecy goes, as long as the ministry stays within the realm of Daniel chapter 7 and Revelation 12-14, they perform reasonably well. With the “1844 doctrine” (the 2300 days and the investigative judgment), in recent years we have been under particular fire, and not entirely able to remain free from embarrassment under intense questioning and pointed cross-examination.  This is not because of any error in the concept itself, but as a result of the inherent weakness of our angles of proof for the doctrine.  However, this has been largely kept away from the Adventist public by various methods.  Outside of those boundaries, our ministry is easily challenged and battled to a standstill with proper interrogation.

When discussion turns toward current events in the Middle East and what the Bible specifically says about how they will lead to the “mark of the beast”, they can only truthfully answer with complete silence or speculation.  Especially does Daniel 11, particularly the correct interpretation of verses 40-45, call forth face-saving dismissal.  Thus, they will simply answer “it’s not important”, or the equivalent as emphatically as possible in an evasive attempt to avoid discussion. 

“It is important that in defending the doctrines which we consider to be fundamental articles of faith we should never allow to employ arguments that are not wholly sound.  These may avail to silence an opposer, but they do not honor the truth.  We should present sound arguments, that will not only silence our opponents, but will bear the closest and most searching scrutiny.” – Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 5 p. 708. 

The startling statement made above is best and most thoroughly documented, ironically, by retired pastor and White Estate historian Donald Ernest Maxwell in his book entitled Adventists and Armaggedon: Have We Misinterpreted Prophecy?

For instance, our leadership confidently and publicly declared that World War I would lead to the Battle of Armaggedon. 

            “Some Adventists began to predict that as a result of the war, Turkey [the “king of the north” according to the Adventist view] would be driven from Europe and the pieces of the puzzle of the prophecies of Daniel 11 and Revelation 16 would somehow fall into place.  As the war progressed, Adventist predictions became more definite.” – Adventists and Armaggedon p. 59. 

            “According to Adventists living at the time, the hopes and fears of our people reached a fevered pitch during these momentous days.  We were sure that in the very near future the Turk would move ‘the tabernacles of his palace’ to Jerusalem and ‘come to his [ignominous] end.’  This event would signal the close of probation, Armaggedon would soon follow and Christ would come perhaps within a year; two at the most.” – Ibid. p. 63. (Brackets belong to the original quote).

The author then cites several sources from our periodicals as confirmation of the above.  Unfortunately, the exact opposite of our expectations took place.

“As previously mentioned, against all probability or expectation, the Turks turned the tables on the Allies in the Greco-Turkish war of 1919-1922.  True, the Ottoman Empire came to an end, but out of its ashes arose, phoenix-like, a vigorous Turkish republic.  This made a shambles of our interpretations of Daniel 11.” – Ibid. p. 68.

Dazed and confused, with darkness settling in, we stubbornly maintained this position.

“That somehow Turkey was still the king of the north continued to be not only Leon Smith’s [son of Uriah Smith] position but the position of most Adventists.  After all, our people reasoned, Turkey still retained the Caliphate – the religious leadership of the Islamic world.”  - Ibid. p. 69. 

It was then theorized that through the Caliphate “some sudden uprising, not in Turkey only, but of the whole Mohammedan world, might change the results of the Great War as affecting Turkey, and at least temporarily restore to that power the possession of the Euphrates valley and Palestine.” (Present Truth, June 3, 1922).  This was critical so that the Turk could relocate his capital to Jerusalem and come to his end.

“But this was not to be.  On March 3, 1923, the Turkish Parliament abolished the Caliphate.  Our interpretation of Daniel 11: 45 was in embarrassing disarray.  Heretofore the church paper had regularly carried articles on the Eastern Question in its pages, but during 1924 the Review carried not a single article on Armaggedon or the king of the north.” – Ibid p. 69.

Our predictions failed miserably, and these failed predictions dealt a severe blow to confidence in our ability to “rightly divide the Word of Truth.”

“As a consequence, baptisms plummeted and apostasies skyrocketed.  In a letter to Irwin H. Evans, vice-president of the North American Division, G.C. President A.G. Daniells wrote in consternation, ‘I count it a very serious thing to have so many thousands of people going away from our ranks… It does seem to me that we should somehow find the real cause of this very heavy drift away from us, and set ourselves resolutely to stop it.’

“In spite of valiant efforts by the denomination’s leaders to staunch the flow of the church’s lifeblood, baptisms were few and apostasies many in the years that followed… Thus, in the late teens and the decade of the 20’s, there was an alarming decrease in total membership in the church.” – Ibid. p. 65, 62.

Not having learned their lesson sufficiently, our ministry absorbed yet another embarrassing blow with World War II. 

“During the war emphasis was placed on an international melee in Palestine, but nothing happened in the war that measured up to our traditional view of Armaggedon.  So, once again our interpretations concerning this battle were in disarray.” - Ibid. p. 82   

But far more disconcerting was our position regarding the Jews returning to Palestine shortly after World War II.  On the strength of a statement found in Early Writings p. 75, the ministry confidently assumed the position that the State of Israel would never be formed in “old Jerusalem.”  However, on May 14, 1948, the United Nations gave hasty birth to the State of Israel as the British relinquished control of the region.  This unexpected turn of events once again had them scrambling for answers.  The damage was more far-reaching and long-lasting, for not only was their reputation further tarnished by this misapplication of the above mentioned reference, but the ministry of Ellen White and the authenticity of the Spirit of Prophecy was called into question. This is still going on today. Even the Protestant churches were more correct on this particular issue.  Worse than all of these, in direct opposition to the church’s position, the much maligned and hated Shepherd’s Rod accurately predicted the outcome of this event. (A full treatise of this will appear in a later section of this document). 

These failures to “rightly divide the Word of Truth” have led to the current Adventist mind-set that events of worldwide significance occuring in the Middle East are essentially “distractions” with no relevance to the fulfillment of end-time prophecy and are thus unworthy of comment or discussion.  They have also led the Adventist church to spiritualize the “Battle of Armaggedon” into a “cosmic battle between good and evil” regarding the Sabbath/Sunday issue rather than an actual conflict between the armies of earth and the Army of Heaven. It is beyond the scope of this document to enter into a discussion of Armaggedon in detail, but we can say that the current S.D.A. position is impossible to prove from the Bible alone.

Daniel 11 is explained away in a similar fashion. The correct interpretation of the final five verses of the chapter is unquestionably of end-time importance.  It is also an undisputed fact that the ministry has no interpretation that can bear close examination without being riddled with contradictions.  Thus, they do the only thing they know how to do and feel that they can do under those circumstances in order to save face; widely proclaim that “it is not a salvation issue.”  This may be excusable for the heathen or the non-religious public, perhaps even the Protestant churches, but for a people who boast more than any other about being an end-time church with an end-time message for an end-time generation, it is completely unacceptable and the highest form of hypocrisy. If this position was taken due to a lack of information being available, this MAY be justified, but the fact of the matter is that there is an abundance of light on the truth of this subject.  The reason it is being ignored and brushed aside is that they despise the source from which it shines. On Daniel 11 and related topics, because of persistent rejection of evidence the Shepherd’s Rod has repeatedly offered from the Bible, the Seventh-day Adventist ministry is ripe for a complete theological defeat. (For further information on Daniel 11 and 12, please request our free literature on the subject).

The mass exodus of church members which occurred after World War I is only a minor representation of what is to take place when events in the Middle East again explode and culminate in the war described in Zechariah 14:1-3.  During that time frame, the leadership will again make predictions out of stern necessity, and again witness the opposite of their predictions come to pass.  They, and those who subscribe to their theories, will become alarmed and confused and witness a hemorrhage of church membership. Individuals will leave the church in droves while the ministry will be thrashing about, desperately wondering what to say and do.  Unfortunately, they will not have sufficient probationary time to correct their errors.  They will, as foolish virgins, not get to “the door” on time for their “lamps [will have] gone out.” (Matt. 25: 8).  Thus will have finally arrived “the day of [their] watchmen and [their] visitation…[then] shall be their perplexity.” (Micah 7: 4).  Will you be one of them? 

I have been shown that many who profess to have a knowledge of present truth know not what they believe.  They do not understand the evidences of their faith.  They have no just appreciation of the work for the present time.  When the time of trial shall come, there are men now preaching to others, who will find, upon examining the positions they hold, that there are many things for which they can give no satisfactory reason.  Until thus tested, they knew not their great ignorance.  And there are many in the church who take it for granted that they understand what they believe, but, until controversy arises, they do not know their own weakness.  When separated from those of like faith, and compelled to stand singly and alone to explain their belief, they will be surprised to see how confused are their ideas of what they had accepted as truth.”  Testimonies Vol. 5 p. 707.

“The mind that depends upon the judgment of others is certain, sooner or later, to be misled.” Education, p. 231

We again stress that these false interpretations and resultant disappointments are a direct result of rejecting truth which “proceedeth forth from God” and not keeping pace with the light.

“Those who have rendered supreme homage to ‘science falsely so called’ will not be the leaders then. Those who have trusted to intellect, genius, or talent will not then stand at the head of rank and file. They did not keep pace with the light. Those who have proved themselves unfaithful will not then be entrusted with the flock. In the last solemn work few great men will be engaged. They are self-sufficient, independent of God, and He cannot use them.” – Testimonies, Vol. 5, p. 80.

With the track record of the Seventh-day Adventist ministry clearly set forth, the reader is left to prayerfully and intelligently consider the wisdom of continuing to be led by their misguided forecasts. Ponder the fact that these events occurred during the prime of some of the greatest scholars Adventism has ever produced, such as M.L. Andreasen, F.M. Wilcox, F.C. Gilbert, W. A. Spicer and A.G. Daniells. These, and their associates, are men who are practically worshipped as gods throughout the rank and file of the denomination. In spite of it all, not in a single instance have they issued an accurate prediction. The Lord’s counsel to you is “cease ye from man…for the leaders of this people cause thee to err, and destroy the way of thy paths.” (Isa. 2:22; 3:12).  Let the reader consider that he would not give the time of day to listen to a weather forecaster with such a poor track record as the one we have reviewed.  Why would you entertain it from a ministry when your eternal interests are involved?   

 

The Track Record of The Shepherd’s Rod

            In sharp contrast to the unreliability of the S.D.A. ministry, the Shepherd’s Rod has accurately predicted events of worldwide import in the Middle East.  It has not rested satisfied with an accurate forecast but has also explained their prophetic significance in the role of end-time events.  It has done this during the same period of time its S.D.A. counterparts were groping for answers regarding, in some instances, the very same events.

            The British Empire was the dominant power in the world during World War II having firm control of  Palestine and the Transjordan, which was then predominately Arab. In 1941, based on an interpretation of Daniel 11: 41, the position was taken that Great Britain (the king of the north as defined by the Rod) would relinquish rulership of the region and that the Arabs would engage in self-governance.

“He shall enter also into the glorious land, and many countries shall be overthrown: but these shall escape out of his hand, even Edom, and Moab, and the chief of the children of Ammon.” – Dan. 11: 41.

Explaining the proposed meaning of this verse, the Rod commented as follows: “Edom, Moab, and the chief of the children of Ammon (those of the Trans-Jordan) then came under the mandate of Great Britain. (See Map 5, page 18.)  The Word, however, says they “shall escape out of his hand,” showing that though he now has them, he is to lose them.” -- The World Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow p. 86. (parentheses belong to the original quote).

In initial fulfillment of the above prediction, on May 22, 1946, Great Britain relinquished the Transjordan mandate, just one year after the Arab League was formed. The fulfillment was completed when the Arabs of the Transjordan became self-governing and eventually changed the name of the nation to Jordan.  This was done despite the fact that the Arabs secretly supported the Nazis and Britain had just come out victorious.   Note also that this was during the same period of time that the S.D.A. ministry was attempting to make World War II the Battle of Armageddon. 

We are unable to locate any direct comments in the Rod explaining the significance of this event (the escaping of the Arabs from European control) in the fulfillment of end-time prophecy.  However, even the casual observer of history would agree that the above, in connection with the next accurately-predicted event to be considered has set the tone of the world’s political stage since World War II.

The Palestine situation was deteriorating rapidly, though Great Britain was victorious in World War II.  About this same time, great agitation and discussion arose as to what would happen with the Jews.  On January 4, 1947, based on an interpretation of Zephaniah 2: 1, 2, 4, and 5, the Rod took the position that the Jews would return to Palestine and create an independent state.

Zeph. 2: 1, 2, 4, 5 --”Gather yourselves together, yea, gather together, O nation not desired; before the decree bring forth, before the day pass as the chaff, before the fierce anger of the Lord come upon you.... For Gaza shall be forsaken, and Ashkelon a desolation: they shall drive out Ashdod at the noon day, and Ekron shall be rooted up.  Woe unto the inhabitants of the sea coast, the nation of the Cherethites!  the Word of the Lord is against you; O Canaan, the land of the Philistines, I will even destroy thee, that there shall be no inhabitant.”

Explaining the proposed meaning of the verse, the Rod commented as follows: “The fourth verse definitely implies that the “nation” is to gather together in the cities of Gaza, Ashkelon, Ashdod, and Ekron, in the land of the Philistines, in the land of Canaan -- in Palestine.

   “In view of the fact that this scripture is now being unfolded, and also the fact that there is but one people, one nation (the descendants of the ancient scribes, priests, and Pharisees who rejected the Lord and who have not even to this day accepted Him, that are hardly desired anywhere in the world) that is now doing all she can to gather together in Palestine -- in view of all this, the present-day Jews are that undesired nation.  Upon her, therefore, the Lord's anger is to fall if she continues to deny Christ.  Yes, the universally hated Jew is the only nation that has been scattered throughout the Gentile world, and is the only one that is now gathering together in Palestine.” – Timely Greetings Vol. 1 No. 22, p. 25.

The S.D.A. ministry confidently assumed an opposite position based on a misapplication of the following reference from the writings of Ellen White which we quote in part: “I also saw that Old Jerusalem would never be built up; and that Satan was doing his utmost to lead the minds of the children of the Lord into these things now, in the gathering time, to keep them from throwing their whole interest into the present work of the Lord, and to cause them to neglect the necessary preparation for the day of the Lord.” – Early Writings pp. 75, 76.

This confidence was further bolstered by the fact that during this period of time there was a proposal on the table to locate the “New State of Israel” in Uganda.

Time shortly proved the Rod correct again.  On May 14, 1948, the United Nations gave birth to the State of Israel in the land of Palestine and the Jews became an independent nation. (The damage control methods currently being used by the leadership to manage the fallout of this episode will be unveiled in a later section of this document).

These facts should clearly demonstrate to the reader that the Shepherd’s Rod is far more reliable than the S.D.A ministry when placed side-by-side.

While being correct is important, being relevant is far more important.  We will now allow the Rod to explain the prophetic significance of the event previously mentioned: “According to the verse that follows [Zeph. 2: 1, 2], this undesirable nation's gathering together, is a sign post to God's people, urging them to continue seeking Him so much the more:

“Zeph. 2:3 – ‘Seek ye the Lord, all ye meek of the earth, which have wrought His judgment; seek righteousness, seek meekness: it may be ye shall be hid in the day of the Lord's anger.’

“When this Judgment-bound nation begins to gather together, then it is, if never before, that the meek of the earth need to seek meekness.” – Timely Greetings Vol. 1 No. 22, p. 24

“Moreover, in these verses, two truths stand out clearly: (1) that in vain the Jews seek to establish themselves in the Promised Land; (2) that we who are bearing the message of the great and dreadful day of the Lord are counselled to seek meekness and righteousness, for thus only shall we “be hid in the day of the Lord's anger,” that is, merely bear knowledge of the message will not save us, there should be corresponding deeds with it.” – Ibid., p.26

That is to say, the State of Israel being established is a twentieth-century sign to God’s people that the land will not remain under the administrative control of the unbelieving Jews indefinitely and that the Kingdom of God is soon to be re-established there. It is further explained that the express purpose for this “sign post” is to inspire the informed, righteous believers to make special preparations to be among the first to whom God will grant that privilege.

“Let us now connect verse 3 with verses 6 and 7, the verses that are applicable to the people of God, the meek.

“Zeph. 2: 3, 6, 7 – ‘Seek ye the Lord, all ye meek of the earth, which have wrought His judgment; seek righteousness, seek meekness: it may be ye shall be hid in the day of the Lord's anger.... And the sea coast shall be dwellings and cottages for shepherds, and folds for flocks.  And the coast shall be for the remnant of the house of Judah; they shall feed thereupon: in the houses of Ashkelon shall they lie down in the evening: for the Lord their God shall visit them, and turn away their captivity.’

   “Now, the fact that the Lord is to destroy all the inhabitants in the land of the Philistines (Zeph. 2:5), and at the same time make it dwellings for ‘shepherds, and folds for flocks,’ shows that He is first to drive out of the land all the wicked, all those who are not seeking meekness, then He is to set up the ‘house of Judah’ in it.” – Ibid. p. 26.

The Rod also proposes that this regime change would occur through a world war centered at Jerusalem based on an interpretation of Zechariah 14: 1-3.

Zech. 14:1-3 -- “Behold, the day of the Lord cometh, and thy spoil shall be divided in the midst of thee. For I will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle; and the city shall be taken, and the houses rifled, and the women ravished; and half of the city shall go forth into captivity, and the residue of the people shall not be cut off from the city. Then shall the Lord go forth, and fight against those nations, as when He fought in the day of battle.”

  “In view of the fact that Jerusalem is to be protected by a wall of fire (Zech. 2:5) while the house of Judah reigns there, it is definite that the battle here described must be fought before the house of Judah is established.  In that battle the nations will defeat the rulers of the Promised Land.  Then it is that the house of Judah commences to be set up.” – Timely Greetings Vol. 1 No. 19 pp. 3, 4. (For further details on this and related subjects, please request our free literature).

Perhaps the reader remains skeptical of these claims, but given the impotence of the ministry’s ability to produce an accurate end-time forecast, he is far safer to cast his lot with the Shepherd’s Rod on these matters.

To conclude this section, the reader will no doubt be informed of a prediction made by the Executive Council of the Davidian movement that failed to occur.  The forecast was made that on April 22, 1959, the world's religions would unite against communism, the purification of the church as described in Eze. 9 would occur and God's Kingdom would be set up in the Middle East.  This obviously failed miserably and this failed prediction has been extensively used to cast doubt upon the Rod message.  A careful analysis of all authentic documentation regarding this event demonstrates that the Rod message did not originate or support this forecast. Not only did the Rod not authorize nor contain this forecast, but this did not even reflect the prevailing belief of the movement at that particular time. Thus, it would be insincere and misguided to use that incident to discredit the Rod. Proof of this is cited below.

“Were the Rod guilty of this offense [setting prophetic dates], it of course could not be in harmony with the Testimonies.  But it has never set the date of any future event.  It has merely established the dates of certain prophetic events which have already taken place.  Thus the dates which are treated in the Shepherd's Rod message are of events after they have been fulfilled - never before they have been fulfilled.” (The Symbolic Code Vol. 8 No. 1-12 p. 20 - written in 1941).

“Time was not given to C. W. Helman [Executive Council Member] to express his views on the present situation.  It was his conviction that: 1.) It was a mistake to place the Shepherd's Rod on the altar; the message stands on its own feet.  2.) This was the stand of the Council only and not that of the members of the Association…12) The Council predicted those events would take place.  This was not the position of the General Association - only the council.”  (Business Meeting Minutes, June 21, 1959)

“Various members of the Executive Council, not in session, but as individuals, accept full responsibility for the prevailing opinion that the warfare and death of the two witnesses, together with related Biblically - predicted events could likewise be expected this Spring.” (Letter from Executive Council to World Field, Summer/Fall 1959). (For full details, please request a free copy of the report entitled Secret Tribunals of the Seventh-Day Adventist Church).

Interestingly enough, even this tragic episode proves the predictive validity of the Rod, for we find a veiled warning of this event in its pages:

“Everything that can be done against God's message of today will be done with even greater vengeance than was manifest against Heaven's message in the days of Christ's first advent, for the Devil knows that if he loses now, he loses forever---that he is to have no other chance.  Unparalleled, therefore, is the urgency that every eleventh-hour church member now quickly and solidly brace himself against the Enemy's effort to deliver a knockout blow.  We must be alert, too, to realize that the blow is to come from surprisingly unsuspected foes---from professed friends of the gospel, who are no less pious than were the priests in Christ's day.  It is, moreover, but to be expected that the Adversary will employ every agency possible to prevent the Lord from disclosing to view His now obscure 144,000 first-fruit servants, who are to go gather in the second fruits (Rev. 7:9).” – The White House Recruiter p. 33 (written in 1951).

With the track record of both parties fully set forth, whose voice will you hearken unto?  Will you heed the voice of man, or will you heed the Voice of God?

 

Early Writings, Page 75.

Ever since the inception of the kingdom truth as unfolded in the Rod, the ministry has endeavored to use Early Writings p. 75 to discredit it.  Upon receiving the following inquiry from a seeker of truth, the Rod issued this response:

“Question No. 43:

“How do you reconcile ‘The Shepherd's Rod’ teaching that the Davidian Kingdom is again to be set up in Palestine, with “Early Writings,” pp. 75, 76: ‘Old Jerusalem never would be built up’?

“Answer:

 “The context of the Early Writings' statement reveals that it refers to the Jewish Zionist Movement, and it shows that the Movement's avowed purpose to re-establish a national Jewish Homeland, centered in Jerusalem proper, will never be realized; that never will Old Jerusalem be rebuilt in accordance with the Zionist interpretation, and never will the non-Christian Jews be the subjects of the Kingdom. (See Tract No. 8, Mount Sion at the Eleventh Hour.).” – The Answerer Book No. 2, p. 86. (1944).

The Seventh-Day Adventist ministry took the Rod to task on this explanation, vigorously challenging it in its “anti-Rod” literature.

“The Shepherd's Rod teaching that the headquarters of the gospel work will be established in Jerusalem, in modern Palestine, and that there will be a mass migration of God's people from all parts of the earth to that place for translation to heaven when Christ comes, is a product of fancy that finds no support in God's Word or in the writings of the Spirit of Prophecy. In fact, Mrs. White wrote the following message of warning to our people in the early days of the church:

‘Then I was pointed to some who are in the great error of believing that it is their duty to go to Old Jerusalem, and think they have a work to do there before the Lord comes. Such a view is calculated to take the mind and interest from the present work of the Lord, under the message of the third angel; for those who think that they are yet to go to Jerusalem will have their minds there, and their means will be withheld from the cause of present truth, to get themselves and others there. I saw that such a mission would accomplish no real good, that it would take a long while to make a very few of the Jews believe even in the first advent of Christ, much more to believe in His second advent.’-Early Writings, p.75.

“That testimony, given in the latter part of 1850, was not a condemnation of the Zionist Movement of Jews organized in 1897 at Basel, Switzerland, to establish a Jewish state in Palestine. Mrs. White warned against fanatics who were bent on going to Jerusalem to launch from that city evangelistic work for the people who had not received the knowledge of the truth. An editorial in our general church paper, in 1851, uttered this warning:

‘We wish here to state that we as a people have no confidence in the strange notions, that some have run into, that the saints have yet to go to Old Jerusalem, etc, etc. Brethren, beware of such heresies.’- The Review and Herald, October 7, 1851, p. 36.

“Although the testimony that Mrs. White gave in 1850 did not specifically refer to the Shepherd's Rod teachings, yet she emphatically condemned the idea in such a manner that it should not receive endorsement thereafter.” – Some Teachings of the Shepherd’s Rod Examined pp. 11, 12.

But an unexpected turn of events took place and especially gained momentum in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s.  Close scrutiny of some of the writings of the Spirit of Prophecy led to intense debate in some Adventist circles, even those in “higher education”.  An inability of the ministry to properly clarify difficult passages and apparent contradictions within her own writings and between her writings and the Bible gave new life to the movement against the inspiration of  Ellen White.  This movement was primarily led by former Adventists, both leaders and laymen, and was strengthened by Protestants.  One of the passages that the “anti-Ellen White advocates” demanded an explanation of was Early Writings p. 75. It was also re-discovered that this passage was used extensively against the possibility of the formation of the State of Israel in 1948. They well knew that if something wasn’t done quickly, their entire “House of Cards” would come crashing down and them with it!  Being placed in the extremely embarrassing position of having to explain how Sis. White could be a true prophet and yet state that “Old Jerusalem never would be built up,” the S.D.A ministry abruptly shifted its position and issued this response:

Ellen G. White wrote in 1851 that ‘old Jerusalem never would be built up.’  By itself, the statement looks unsustainable. But when the setting is reconstructed, we find Mrs. White counseling the growing Adventist group that both time-setting and the ‘age-to-come’ notion were incompatible with Biblical truth. She emphasized that the Old Testament prophecies regarding the establishment of a Jewish kingdom in Palestine were conditional on obedience and forfeited by disobedience. Unfulfilled prophecies would be fulfilled to ‘true Israel’ as unfolded in the New Testament text.

“Thus the popular movement of the 1840s and 1850s to promote a Zionist state in Palestine was not a fulfillment of Biblical prophecy and not a quest in which Adventists should become involved. Her warnings and instruction were designed to turn the interest away from Palestine and toward the work God had opened up before them.

“In a September 1850 vision she saw that it was a ‘great error’ to believe that ‘it is their duty to go to Old Jerusalem, and think they have a work to do there before the Lord comes. . . ; for those who think that they are yet to go to Jerusalem will have their minds there, and their means will be withheld from the cause of present truth to get themselves and others there.’

“Less than a year later, August 1851, she wrote with greater emphasis ‘that Old Jerusalem never would be built up; and that Satan was doing his utmost to lead the minds of the children of the Lord into these things now, in the gathering time, to keep them from throwing their whole interest into the present work of the Lord, and to cause them to neglect the necessary preparation for the day of the Lord.’

“How did Ellen White's readers understand this statement? That there was no light in the popular ‘age-to-come’ teaching, that there is no Biblical significance in the Jews' returning to Palestine, that Jerusalem will never be rebuilt in a future millennial period. She was not talking about a possible political rebuilding of Jerusalem but of a prophetically significant rebuilding of Old Jerusalem. To continue to think that way, she emphasized, was to sink further into Satan's deceptions and away from present duty.” – Comments Regarding Unusual Statements Found in Ellen G. White’s Writings on E.G. White Estate Website.

Now, “herein is a marvellous thing!”  In their “anti-Rod” literature the ministry officially teaches the people that Early Writings p. 75 does not apply to the Zionist Movement, but on its website, it just as officially teaches that it the reference in question does apply to the Zionist Movement.  Yet, both are distributed to the people as truth. The reader should note that this destruction of their own foundation is not as a result of enemy engagement, but of “friendly fire,” making it all the more shameful.

But far more mind-boggling than this is the fact that the ministry goes one step further than simply contradicting itself, as it has so often done in the past.  This time it actually vindicates and adopts the position of The Shepherd’s Rod on this passage.  Ironically, it does this while vehemently opposing it at the same time through its “anti-Rod” literature.  For the reader’s convenience and astonishment, we place the two statements side-by-side:

 The context of the Early Writings' statement reveals that it refers to the Jewish Zionist Movement, and it shows that the Movement's avowed purpose to re-establish a national Jewish Homeland, centered in Jerusalem proper, will never be realized; that never will Old Jerusalem be rebuilt in accordance with the Zionist interpretation, and never will the non-Christian Jews be the subjects of the Kingdom. (See Tract No. 8, Mount Sion at the Eleventh Hour.).” – The Answerer Book No. 2, p. 86.

“Thus the popular movement of the 1840s and 1850s to promote a Zionist state in Palestine was not a fulfillment of Biblical prophecy and not a quest in which Adventists should become involved. Her warnings and instruction were designed to turn the interest away from Palestine and toward the work God had opened up before them…How did Ellen White's readers understand this statement? That there was no light in the popular ‘age-to-come’ teaching, that there is no Biblical significance in the Jews' returning to Palestine, that Jerusalem will never be rebuilt in a future millennial period. She was not talking about a possible political rebuilding of Jerusalem but of a prophetically significant rebuilding of Old Jerusalem. To continue to think that way, she emphasized, was to sink further into Satan's deceptions and away from present duty.” –  Ellen G. White and Her Critics p. 123 (by F.D. Nichol) also found in “Comments Regarding Unusual Statements Found in Ellen G. White’s Writings” on E.G. White Estate Website.

The author of the above response, Elder F.D. Nichol, was one of three men who were carefully selected by the ministry to author the pamphlet “A Warning Against Error,” the original “anti-Rod” literature.  Here, on behalf of the entire ministry, he is forced to use the conclusions of the very message he dedicated his life to opposing.  This became necessary because he found his himself “between a rock and a hard place” with positively no other explanation that appears remotely within the realm of reason.  However, in borrowing the Rod’s conclusions on Early Writings pp. 75, 76, he failed to give the Rod its proper credit.  By this action he and the entire denomination are found to be guilty of blatant plagiarism of the Shepherd’s Rod message to prolong the existence of their “House of Cards Built on Sand.”

The above occurrence is just one conclusive demonstration of the fact that The Shepherd’s Rod has the information of deliverance from all of the confusing “winds of doctrine” in Christendom and the Seventh-day Adventist church’s theological “wilderness wanderings” and doctrinal woes in particular.  If permitted, the Rod would deliver the ministry from its current ideological confusion and lead the people of God home as verily as Moses’ rod delivered the people of God from Egypt and led them to the Promised Land.  But, alas, the ministry would rather have control of the sheep than deliverance for them!  Such self-serving men should be “stripped naked” (Hosea 2: 3) and exposed for what they really are!  Praise God that the day for that series of events HAS ARRIVED!!

“These persons come to feel secure in their deceptions, and, because of His longsuffering, say that the Lord seeth not, and then act as though He had forsaken the earth.  But He will detect their hypocrisy and will open before others those sins which they were so careful to hide.” -- Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 5, pp. 211, 212.

These rank impostors cannot logically be trusted with the flock during the Loud Cry, or with the power that attends the promised second Pentecost.  They have demonstrated that, were they granted unlimited Pentecostal power, they would nourish their own belly at the expense of the flock of God!  Therefore, God Himself must remove such men.  While the announcement of this event is entrusted to his faithful followers in the church, the hand of God and His supernatural associates (the angelic host) must accomplish the actual removal. The Scriptures parabolically declare that the Lord will accomplish this desperately needed work