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1914 (and 607) - Where did the WTS get the idea?

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Why another topic about 1914 and 607?

Because we could use a topic where we can all agree a little more easily. Seriously. In this topic, we don't need to worry about whether 607 is correct, or 1914 is correct. No one needs to say why it does or doesn't make sense to them. Let's just see if we can review the possible and probable sources that were influential, and ultimately resulted in 607 and 1914 being accepted as a Bible-based fulfillment of prophecy.

No one needs to jump from another thread about 607 and Biblical evidence over to this one. In fact, I just read a couple of books last night for the first time, and I had some questions that I couldn't find an answer to, and hoped that someone from that other thread, or anyone really, might have run across the resources that might have answered the questions. I'm reading one more book first, and don't think I'll finish it tonight, so consider this topic to be kind of a placeholder for a couple days.

So this is the purpose of the three current threads:

One place to start is with a couple sentences in the "Proclaimers" book (next post). I personally intend to avoid a certain book by COJ for this topic, to avoid unnecessary controversy, although anyone should feel free to use any resources from anywhere they wish, as long as it appears to be a statement of fact. Again, this is not about questioning the correctness of the doctrine.

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So I'll start with the paragraph in the "Proclaimers" book, highlighting a sentence I just looked into last night:

*** jv chap. 10 p. 134 Growing in Accurate Knowledge of the Truth ***

  • As early as 1823, John A. Brown, whose work was published in London, England, calculated the “seven times” of Daniel chapter 4 to be 2,520 years in length. But he did not clearly discern the date with which the prophetic time period began or when it would end. He did, however, connect these “seven times” with the Gentile Times of Luke 21:24. In 1844, E. B. Elliott, a British clergyman, drew attention to 1914 as a possible date for the end of the “seven times” of Daniel, but he also set out an alternate view that pointed to the time of the French Revolution. Robert Seeley, of London, in 1849, handled the matter in a similar manner. At least by 1870, a publication edited by Joseph Seiss and associates and printed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, was setting out calculations that pointed to 1914 as a significant date, even though the reasoning it contained was based on chronology that C. T. Russell later rejected.

The surrounding paragraphs will offer additional details we can get to later, and we've already discussed a small portion of this quote about John Aquila Brown elsewhere. In reading a book by Joseph Seiss last night, I thought this was the book that the paragraph intended. ("A Miracle in Stone") I realized it wasn't, when that book didn't mention 1914 (but the book still could have been hinting at it, or a date very close to it). So I went back and read portions of his "Lectures on the Apocalypse," and another very strange book that ties Astrology (Zodiac) to the Gospel.  I got closer, I thought, with "The Last Times" and "Parable of the Ten Virgins" but still no 1914. (The "Proclaimers" book didn't include the resource, just the hints.) Through Google searches with his name and "Philadelphia" I found a few more items. I wasted some time with a book called: "Luis Napoleon the Destined Monarch of the World and...the Battle of Armageddon" which I saved for quoting a couple points in this topic. Next, Google pointed me to a very racist book from the early 1870's on the status of the "Negro" by "Ariel." That book proved valuable, however, in pointing me to "The Prophetic Times." You can find it here: https://books.googleusercontent.com/books/content?req=AKW5QafJbQ6pCmDNcBvzoMYqXTueLwyuFnEGGCrD6NdXl9F4iVgY1ECNIypPpMkQGVhioTyZqn_BiCKv3P_aGj2SvJyCCH2k_WrZob3PZMpiOr96QhjrIuWh-eBBfW53xAmWPXa1FWHEsemWxZEm9fd2S6ULix_ETXqIMVIv6uSAtfhKdTWxct7YHmpsP7LefUhQj8PK-y_CbsI4GRE32SWs5JPoaQyzXwC8nOgpvP6wr1CK9bgFMRA4YDtQep0FPBJBapGIozDM

The December 1870 issue had it. I'll discuss later.

In the meantime, I decided that it was actually Seiss who seems to have had the most influence on Russell from the perspective of all the multiple angles on the chronology doctrines.

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If anyone is looking for good links (mostly Google Books) to the Joseph Seiss books I mentioned, the following is a link with about a dozen of his books on it. He wrote even more than those listed. He even contributed articles in the Watch Tower magazine, including two printed in 1905. His book "The Last Times" (1856) is quoted with the very first issue of the Watch Tower, July 1, 1879 (supplement) .

http://onlinebooks.library.upenn.edu/webbin/book/lookupname?key=Seiss%2C Joseph A. (Joseph Augustus)%2C 1823-1904

The book on Napolean is not included in the list because it wasn't written by Seiss, and only references works by Seiss: https://books.google.com/books?id=33Za05MXtpQC&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_ge_summary_r&cad=0#v=onepage&q&f=false

I won't link to the racist book because it is merely a response to Seiss, (Seiss was not the racist.) But it does have some useful info about the monthly periodical "The Prophetic Times" attached below. I have also attached an ad from the Napolean book:

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We already spoke of John Aquila Brown, and his dates in 584 AD, 622 AD, 1453 AD, 1844 AD, 1873 AD, 1917 AD. Five of the key time spans in Brown's chronology were:

  • 457 BC to 1843 AD (2300 days)
  • 584 AD to 1844 AD, (1260 days)
  • 622 AD to 1873 AD, (1290 days)
  • 622 AD to 1917 AD, (1335 days)
  • 604 BC to 1917 AD, (2520 days)

Brown promoted pieces of this particular chronology starting around 1810 to 1827, including 604-1917 in "Even-Tide" (1823). Of course, days were always turned into years, a longstanding practice with a Biblical precedent already stated for periods of 40 days and 390 days.

Charles Taze Russell. Starting in the 1870's and throughout his lifetime,  Russell promoted a similar set of dates. These were the same dates, of course, that N. H. Barbour promoted. Also note that several of these dates sometimes varied by about a year: 1799/1798 AD, 1914/1915 AD. These dates were promoted through the Watch Tower's wide distribution of Russell's books which continued until the early 1930's:

  • 454 BC to 1846 AD (2300 days) - Russell is 3 years different from Brown
  • 539 AD to 1799 AD, (1260 days) - 539 AD*, not a BC date; unrelated to Cyrus)
  • 539 AD to 1829 AD, (1290 days) - Russell says 1829 was the prophesied start of "Millerites"**
  • 539 AD to 1874 AD, (1335 days) - when Jesus returned; start of "parousia"
  • 606 BC to 1914 AD, (2520 days) - Russell is 3 years different from Brown

* 539 AD was considered the beginning of Roman Catholic papal rule. From "Thy Kingdom Come" [Millennial Dawn, Studies in the Scriptures], Vol 3, page 81, 82:

  • It proves that the fall of the Ostrogothic kingdom in A.D. 539 was, as clearly indicated by the prophetic measure (1260 years), the exact point of time when this desolating and, in the sight of God, abominable system was "set up." . . . in the short space of fifty years from its small beginning, A.D. 539. We may therefore feel assured that the 1260 years, or three and a half times, of papal dominion, are well and clearly marked at both ends.

** From "Thy Kingdom Come" [Millennial Dawn, Studies in the Scriptures], Vol 3, page 86, 87:

  • But the "Miller movement" was more than this: it was the beginning of the right understanding of Daniel's visions, and at the right time to fit the prophecy. Mr. Miller's application of the three and a half times (1260 years) was practically the same as that we have just given, but he made the mistake of not starting the 1290 and 1335 periods at the same point. Had he done so he would have been right. On the contrary, he started them thirty years sooner--about 509 instead of 539, which ended the 1335 days in 1844, instead of 1874. It was, nevertheless, the beginning of the right understanding of the prophecy; for, after all, the 1260 period, which he saw correctly, was the key; and the preaching of this truth . . . 

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So what did the "Prophetic Times" of December 1870, published by Seiss, actually say?

It mentioned several dates because one of the points was that the 2520 years as a punishment for Israel could be thought of as having many different start dates, due to the fact that there are several important times mentioned in the books of Kings and Chronicles when Jehovah spoke of a time of special punishment relative to the kings of Israel or Judah. But of all these dates in the 1700's through the 1900's, the others were mentioned only an average of about 1.5 times each. But 1914 is mentioned SIX times in the article. The two columns in the first image represent 606 as the time when Nebuchadnezzar takes Daniel, in approximately his accession year, which was usually considered to be 605, not 606:

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Notice that he is generally a year off from the commonly accepted secular dates:

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The following are more copy-and-paste excerpts where 1914 was under discussions.

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46 minutes ago, Nana Fofana said:

I neer heard of "the Syriac Little Horn" , or "the same Pachalic(SP?) that imperiled the Sultan in 1839, in the opening of the Suez Canal", or any of this, really.

I guess this publication must have thought that ownership of the Suez Canal was more directly related to the future political prospects of a Jewish nation in Palestine. I don't remember that this particular application was anything that the Watch Tower ever bought into. However, Russell was also very interested in how developments in the world during the 1800's would help to settle the question of Jews going back to Jerusalem in Palestine and setting up the nation of Israel as the foundation for the time in 1914 when they would be the only remaining government on earth after the smashing to bits of all other [Gentile] governments.

But Russell spent a bit more time on internal and external religious influences that laid the foundation for Zionism. In "Thy Kingdom Come" Russell says:

  • As the time for the promised restoration of God's favor to Israel draws on, we see a preparation being made for it.

In the September 1906 Watch Tower, Russell said it was 30 years earlier when he first began championing the return of the Jews to Israel, meaning around 1876, of course. Russell says, on page 291 of this issue:

  • " . . . natural Israel is yet to play an important part in the world's affairs, naturally watch keenly everything transpiring throughout the world affecting the Jews. Noting that the favor to Spiritual Israel meant the disfavor of natural Israel, and that the completion of Spiritual Israel would mean the return of natural Israel to divine favor, we more than others were prepared to look for and to apply the prophetic promises which belong to fleshly Israel. Thus it was that thirty years ago we were preaching the regathering of natural Israel to Palestine before A.D., 1914. Others mocked, and even orthodox Jews assured us that they did not expect such things for several centuries. Not for fifteen years after that did Dr. Herzl and Dr. Nordau and others dream of and organize the Zionist movement for the reoccupation of Palestine by the natural descendants of Abraham, who, the Apostle says, are still "beloved for the fathers' sakes."

That same article said this about the Canal. (The article was called: "The Jew! The Jew! The Jew!")

  • England, alarmed at the situation in Egypt, and by the efforts of the Sultan to encourage a "Holy War" by the Mohammedans, has viewed with alarm the building of a railway from the Sinaitic Peninsula into Palestine, lest it should give the Sultan a military advantage and endanger the interests and political value of the Suez canal. It is easy to believe that England therefore would be pleased to see the Jews, a friendly race, enter Palestine in considerable numbers.

I lived in a state where the Mississippi flowed backwards (February 7, 1812) a bit before my time. Hurricane Isaac (2012?) made the surface waters, at least, flow backwards for quite a while even more recently, but that was further downstream.

 

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On 1/23/2018 at 10:47 AM, JW Insider said:

We already spoke of John Aquila Brown,  . . .

  • 457 BC to 1843 AD (2300 days)
  • 584 AD to 1844 AD, (1260 days)
  • 622 AD to 1873 AD, (1290 days)
  • 622 AD to 1917 AD, (1335 days)
  • 604 BC to 1917 AD, (2520 days)

. . . Charles Taze Russell. . . .

  • 454 BC to 1846 AD (2300 days) - Russell is 3 years different from Brown
  • 539 AD to 1799 AD, (1260 days) - 539 AD*, not a BC date; unrelated to Cyrus)
  • 539 AD to 1829 AD, (1290 days) - Russell says 1829 was the prophesied start of "Millerites"**
  • 539 AD to 1874 AD, (1335 days) - when Jesus returned; start of "parousia"
  • 606 BC to 1914 AD, (2520 days) - Russell is 3 years different from Brown

We can now quickly compare the variations of these dates among Millerites themselves, other Second Adventists, Seventh Day Adventists, and even non-Adventists (like Seiss).

Miller says he formulated his dates in 1818, and began preaching about them in the 1820's, shortly after John Aquila Brown had been publishing the dates shown above (Brown actually began publishing as early as 1810; see Froom, V3.)

William Miller  Based, for example, on his own words from 1845 here: http://centrowhite.org.br/files/ebooks/apl/all/Miller/William Miller's Apology and Defence, August 1.pdf

  • 457 BC to 1843 AD (2300 days)
  • 538 AD to 1798 AD, (1260 days) The years of Papal supremacy, as with Russell, etc. *
  • 508 AD to 1798 AD, (1290 days) * [less explicit after the "Disappointment"]
  • 508 AD to 1843 AD, (1335 days)
  • 677 BC to 1843 (2520 days) - Starts with loss of independent kingdom under Manasseh

Even after the "Great Disappointment" of 1843 (and re-tried in 1844), Miller still finds general support for large parts of his chronology in the prior respected works of Bush, Hinton, Jarvis, Morris and others. But in his 1845 "apology" he apparently already realizes what some later Second Adventists will pick up on, that it appears rather contrived to make either the 1260 and 1290 start on different dates just so that they can end on the same date, especially if the 1335 and 1290 start on the same date. In restating his beliefs in 1845, he explains everything else, but carefully avoids explicit mention of the start and end dates of the most contrived-looking pieces.

Seventh-Day Adventists, who derived from Millers closest supporters had already tied themselves to this original set of dates through writings, direct promotion of Miller, and even some personal visions and prophecies of their own that tied it all up to 1844. For them, all they had to do was re-explain 1844 as expecting the wrong thing, but at the right time. They re-explained that something prophetically important actually did happen in 1844, but invisible and in heaven. Therefore, one of the famous Seventh Day Adventist books, by Uriah Smith, 1897, that is still popular today, still promotes the old Miller dates:

  • 457 BC to 1844 AD (2300 days) p.223,233 (no-zero-year explains 1844, otherwise 1843)
  • 538 AD to 1798 AD, (1260 days) p.533
  • 508 AD to 1798 AD, (1290 days) p.342
  • 508 AD to 1844 AD, (1335 days) p.342
  • nothing applicable, (2520 days) p.785

In fact, on page 785, the author (Uriah Smith) makes it clear he has seen charts of the type that Barbour and Russell presented, and that these almost always include the "seven times." He says this about Leviticus 26, then Daniel 4:

  • Almost every scheme of the "Plan of the Ages,"** "Age-to-come," etc., makes use of a supposed prophetic period called the "Seven Times;" and the attempt is made to figure out a remarkable fulfilment by events in Jewish and Gentile history. All such speculators might as well spare their pains; for there is no such prophetic period in the Bible.
  • But we need borrow no trouble on this score; for the expression "seven times" [Leviticus 26] does not denote a period of duration, but is simply an adverb expressing degree, and setting forth the severity of the judgments to be brought upon Israel.
  • The expression in Dan.4:16 is not prophetic, for it is used in plain, literal narration. (See verse 25.)

** Russell's first volume was called "Plan of the Ages" before the name was changed to "Divine Plan of the Ages."

A big difference between Seventh Day Adventists and other chronology-laden groups like Second Adventists, Russellite-styled Bible Students, or Jehovah's Witnesses is that SDAs do not have any prophetic dates going past 1844. It's one of the reasons that the discussion of the history of all Adventist prophetic dates by L.E.Froom displays a seeming irritation that J A Brown, the first person to evidently point to 1843/4, didn't stop there but created a prophetic continuation of dates by allowing the 1260, 1290, and 1335 to all begin at the same time. Starting them all at the same time (when Papal power began to dominate as political power) forced his dates beyond 1844. Later SDA commentators, after Miller, apparently found it impossible to agree that a 2,520 year period would start with Manasseh to end in 1844, but starting any time after that would force a date beyond 1844.

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Rather than spending all the time in the small details, we should get a higher level view of what was going on, too. There's more speculation in any high-level view, but here's an attempt, hopefully not too controversial:

Protestants were not well-known until the mid-1500's. Almost by definition, Protestantism involved an immediate reflex to begin openly speaking of the Pope and Papal authority as the Antichrist. It was pretty easy then to go to the next step and realize that Biblical eschatology predicts some movement or maneuvering of the Antichrist in the final days -- the last days before the Judgment. The success of Protestant groups must have seemed enormously important in the historical scheme of things. Something very important must be brewing, and it made sense that these Protestants had escaped "Babylon" just in time to barely escape Babylon's destruction. It just had to be true that the "end of the world" had drawn near. So the more educated among Protestants would have been looking immediately at Bible prophecy, end-times prophecy (eschatology) to give more credibility to these claims that the end was upon them, and the Antichrist (related to some Papal authority, no doubt) was about to show herself, etc. etc.

Today, scholars see the success of Protestantism as the result of several social, economic, industrial, political, educational and religious factors. Some were driven by the recent invention of the printing press so that both Bibles and more secular books were bought and shared by common people. Other inventions helped expand the horizons of Europeans by extending navigation and exploration. Europeans discovered they were not alone in the world. The Catholic church itself, through its own teachings and its universities, had been exposing people to the philosophy of classical Greek thinking. Options were available, including optional doctrines.

In the 1600's, Protestantism in the American colony was especially ripe for theories about Bible prophecy and the significance of the Protestant escape from the Roman Papacy, or even the "French" or "Anglican" Papacy. This made sense because the very existence of the American colony was seen as a kind escape from "Egypt" to the "Promised Land" where the most famous of early settlers claimed that Jehovah's blessing could be seen in how easily the Native American "Indians" were being wiped out through disease. It was as they often didn't even have to fight, when smallpox and other diseases were killing whole villages of "Indians" while the White "pilgrims" and "pioneers" were blessed with relative immunity. Europeans, of course, had already built up much of this immunity through their own plagues of the 13th through the 15th centuries. 

Looking at the historical sweep of a Catholic Church, with its ancient books and buildings, it seemed to tie itself all the way back to the first century -- to the apostles themselves. But the American Protestant universities (Harvard, Princeton, etc.), were becoming hotbeds of even more prophetic speculation, discussing the latest books on Bible prophecy, hosting lectures on prophecy.  Famous early American names including John Harvard, Roger Williams, Mathers, Cotton, Jonathan Edwards were all involved.

Perfectly timed to all of this was Bishop Ussher's chronology in the mid 1600's. Catholic and Jewish Bible commentators had already seen the possibility that the time periods of the bible 390, 490, 1260, 1290, 1335, 2300, even 2520, could be translated to years and reach from Biblical times into their own era. Bishop Ussher had developed a chronology that tied secular dates to the events in the Bible.

Bishop Ussher completed a chronology between 1648 and 1650 that had Jesus born exactly 4000 years after Adam was created, and had Solomon's temple exactly 1000 years before Jesus. This fed into another common idea that the thousand-year reign at the END of the 6000 years would make a perfect "Grand Week" of 7,000 years. This idea had been out there well before Ussher. But there was a problem in that Ussher's dates that pushed the end of 6,000 years all the way out to 1996/7. Adventists (and C.T.Russell) were quick to correct this by finding ways to push creation back another 120 -150+ years, so that the millennium could start closer to 1843 or 1873.

Ussher himself had evidently begun to use Revelation 11:1-4 to predict a great persecution by the Papists in England, Ireland and Scotland, and a book about it was written very soon after he died: "The Prophecy of Bishop Usher." (available on Google Books. Also see a Cotton/Laud connection in the same book).

The late 1600's finally cemented the reasons why John Aquila Brown, Miller, Barbour, Russell and so many others were still so concerned with keeping key pieces of their chronologies in sync, and why many groups continued with almost identical chronologies into the 1900's and some even until today (Bible Students, Seventh Day Adventists). It explained the reason that all these chronologies had been so closely tied to the political domination of the Papists. It may have started here with Ussher himself, but the most salient reason they became "set in stone" actually started with others in the mid-1600's and then an amazing prediction came true based on these prophecies.

In 1633, a Cambridge-educated preacher named John Cotton had emigrated to America in 1633 because of religious persecution by William Laud back in England. Preaching especially in 1639-1640, and then publishing between 1642 and 1655 or so, he had already tied the 1,260 days to the Papacy from the first use of the term "Pontifex Maximus" in about the year 395 up until the end of the Papacy's power that he thus predicted for about 1655 since 395+1260=1655. This basic idea had already been put forward much earlier by Walter Brute and especially John Napier in 1593. But before the 1600's were out, some were already predicting (nearly 100 years in advance) that the end of the Papacy would be centered on uprisings in France at the end of the 1700's. The French Revolution played out from about 1789 to 1798, resulting in a surprisingly "correct" fulfillment of the prophecy, especially the one spelled out in 1701 by Robert Fleming in "The Rise and Fall of the Papacy" which pointed especially to France and the fall of the Papacy in 1794.

That would explain why every one of the prophetic chronologies above, including the one that Russell and Rutherford promoted (through Watch Tower publications) until the 1930's included dates for the rise and fall of the Papacy. The Watch Tower claimed that the last days had begun in 1799, and that the 1,260 days/years referred to the Papacy, too. And it also could explain why the Roman Catholic Church remained a special target of Rutherford throughout his entire lifetime.

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3 hours ago, Nana Fofana said:

Russell, C. T. (Charles Taze), 1852-1916

Wow- He was quick wasn't he?

Perhaps too quick for his own good. The bulk of the 124 years he needed to change were resolved by claiming there was a copyist error in the Bible that accounted for 100 of those years. But after about 60 years, the Watchtower changed back to Ussher's view on that point. Another place to adjust, of course, was the 18-year to 20-year "gap" that we still deal with today.

Here's is Russell's explanation from "The Time is at Hand" Vol 2 of Studies in the Scriptures, page 51-54. It's curious how he so simply resolves a piece of the problem by claiming that he relies completely on the Bible, and then shows why the Bible is very likely in error at the point where Ussher used a Bible passage and Russell claimed it was a copyist's error in that part of the Bible:

 

---------------quote from "The Time is at Hand" page 51-54 ----------------------

This and Usher's Chronology Compared

It will be interesting to some to know wherein the above chronology differs from that inserted in the margin of the common version of the Bible, known as Usher's Chronology. The difference between the two, down to the time of the seventy years of desolation, is one hundred and twenty-four (124) years. This difference is made up of four periods of 18,4,2 and 100 years--as follows:

Usher dates the seventy years desolation eighteen years earlier than shown above--i.e., before the dethronement of Zedekiah, Judah's last king--because he figured the king of Babylon took many of the people captive at that time.* (2 Chron. 36:9,10,17; 2 Kings 24:8-16) He evidently makes the not uncommon mistake of regarding those seventy years as the period of captivity, whereas the Lord expressly declares them to be seventy years of desolation of the land, that the land should lie "desolate, without an inhabitant." Such was not the case prior to Zedekiah's dethronement. (2 Kings 24:14) But the desolation which followed Zedekiah's overthrow was complete; for, though some of the poor of the land were left to be vine-dressers and husbandmen (2 Kings 25:12), shortly even these--"all people, both small and great"--fled to Egypt for fear of the Chaldees. (Verse 26) There can be no doubt here: and therefore in reckoning the time to the desolation of the land, all periods up to the close of Zedekiah's reign should be counted in, as we have done.


*Note, however, this partial captivity occurred eleven, not eighteen, years before the dethronement of King Zedekiah.


The four years difference is in the reign of Jehoram. Usher gives it as a reign of four years, while the Bible says it was eight years. 2 Chron. 21:5; 2 Kings 8:17

Of the two years difference, one year is found in the term of the reign of Ahaz, which Usher gives as fifteen, while the Bible says it was sixteen years. (2 Chron. 28:1; 2 Kings 16:2) And the other is in the term of Jehoash, which Usher reckons as thirty-nine, while the Bible gives it as forty years. 2 Kings 12:1; 2 Chron. 24:1

These differences can be accounted for only by supposing that Usher followed, or attempted to follow, Josephus, a Jewish historian whose chronological dates are now generally recognized as reckless and faulty. We rely on the Bible alone, believing that God is his own interpreter.

Aside from these twenty-four years difference in the period of the Kings, there is another variance between the above Bible chronology and that of Usher, namely, one hundred years in the period of the Judges. Here Usher is misled by the evident error of 1 Kings 6:1, which says that the fourth year of Solomon's reign was the four-hundred-and-eightieth year from the coming out of Egypt. It evidently should read the five-hundred-and-eightieth year, and was possibly an error in transcribing; for if to Solomon's four years we add David's forty, and Saul's space of forty, and the forty-six years from leaving Egypt to the division of the land, we have one hundred and thirty years, which deducted from four hundred and eighty would leave only three hundred and fifty years for the period of the Judges, instead of the four hundred and fifty years mentioned in the Book of Judges, and by Paul, as heretofore shown. The Hebrew character "daleth" (4) very much resembles the character "hay" (5), and it is supposed that in this way the error has occurred, possibly the mistake of a transcriber. 1 Kings 6:1, then, should read five hundred and eighty, and thus be in perfect harmony with the other statements.

Thus the Word of God corrects the few slight errors which have crept into it by any means.* And remember that those breaks occur in the period bridged effectually by the inspired testimony of the New Testament.


*A similar discrepancy will be noticed in comparing 2 Chron. 36:9 with 2 Kings 24:8, the one giving eighteen years and the other, evidently incorrect, giving eight years as the age of Jehoiachin, who reigned three months, and did evil in the sight of the Lord, and was punished by captivity, etc. Such a mistake could easily occur, but God has so guarded his Word that the few trivial errors of copyists are made very manifest, and the full harmony of his Word gives ample foundation for faith.


So, then, whereas Usher dates A.D. 1 as the year 4005 from the creation of Adam, it really was, as we have shown, the year 4129, according to the Bible record, thus showing the year 1872 A.D. to be the year of the world 6000, and 1873 A.D. the commencement of the seventh thousand-year period, the seventh millennium, or thousand-year day of earth's history.

-------------end of quote----------------

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    • By John Paul
      People here should go back and reread their historical understanding of Russell. He had a wait and see attitude about 1914 while he had claimed Jesus presence was felt in 1874. That of course had nothing to do with Jesus being enthroned in 1914, nor does it revise a historical fact world war one started in 1914.
      “CHRONOLOGY--Beginning or End of Time of Trouble Re 1914.
      Q71:1: QUESTION (1905)--1--Will the time of trouble begin or end in 1914 and why?
      ANSWER--We answer that there have been times of trouble this good while. (You know we have a trouble corner over there, and he smiled and pointed over to his little office.) There have been and there will be times of trouble as far as the Church is concerned. Look at the persecutions. But the reference here, and properly enough, is to the "Great Time of Trouble" that is referred to in Daniel, twelfth chapter, where he says, "there shall be a time of trouble such as never was before," and our Lord adds, "No and never shall be again." Well that is the time of trouble that is in our minds, and it will not begin nor end in 1914. The time of trouble may be a beginning now, but those beginnings are only leading up to the real trouble.
      Oct. 15, 1913 WT p.5336
      The divine plan presented in the STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES. We are advised that it give's seven different corroborative proofs that the close of the year 1914--namely, about October, 1914-will mark the closing of the Times of the Gentiles, and the beginning of the masonic reign. Many of the dear friends are rejoicing in these cobnrrohon1tions.
      We wish still, however, to reiterate what we have said from the first respecting the date of the close of the Times of the Gentiles; namely, that the calculations as we presented them in Vol. II, STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES, are the truth to the best of our knowledge and belief. Nevertheless, there is enough uncertainty about the matter of chronology to make it a matter of faith rather than of positive knowledge. We remind our readers that our consecration to the Lord is not to October, 1914, nor to any other time except that mentioned by the Savior'' Be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.' '-Rev. 2:10.
      Therefore, Russell never implied the world would end in 1914.
      However, some copies of the 1913 WT omit the Morton Great Pyramid reference by some Bible Student Associations for unknown reason. Then those flat out lies that people keep telling themselves, are made by people that have inherited a bias with worthless research.
      What should be noted, Russell didn’t control all the independent churches, and how they viewed their own understanding of prophecy.
      No more than overthinking about 1975, and 2000. The Org never claimed those dates would bring the end of the world. 1975 was the 6000 years mark and the 2000 was revealed to hold significance to certain “other” religious sects and some doomsayers in which the Org spoke about.
      Aside from the obvious Y2K scare?
      https://www.worldatlas.com/articles/what-was-the-y2k-scare.html
      The Org was making sure people understood what a true apocalypse would entail.
      *** w99 12/1 p. 5 Why the Apocalypse Scare? ***
      Similarly today, there are religious and secular fears that the year 2000 or 2001 will bring with it a terrifying apocalypse. But are these fears justified? And is the message contained in the Bible book of Revelation, or Apocalypse, something to be feared or, on the contrary, is it something we should hope for? Please read on.
      *** g98 5/8 p. 21 How Significant Is the Year 2000? ***
      Granted, the Bible talks about the time when Jehovah God will intervene in human affairs by removing badness and ushering in a new world. Bible prophecy speaks of “the time of the end,” “the conclusion of the system of things,” “the last days,” and “the day of Jehovah.” (Daniel 8:17; Matthew 24:3; 2 Timothy 3:1; 2 Peter 3:12) However, the “end” prophesied in the Bible is not connected in any way to the year 2000. There is nothing in the Scriptures ascribing special significance to the end of the second millennium as calculated by the Gregorian calendar.
      Therefore, the Org was NOT being vague in both instances. I believe evidence was given about 1975 in a 1974 article submitted here that has been erased, that debunks that theory. I will re-post the Article from 1974. Why people keep bringing it up as though it still has conclusive evidence is beyond logic.
      *** w74 10/15 p. 635 Growing in Appreciation for the “Divine Purpose” ***
      The publications of Jehovah’s witnesses have shown that, according to Bible chronology, it appears that 6,000 years of man’s existence will be completed in the mid-1970’s. But these publications have never said that the world’s end would come then. Nevertheless, there has been considerable individual speculation on the matter. So the assembly presentation “Why We Have Not Been Told ‘That Day and Hour’” was very timely. It emphasized that we do not know the exact time when God will bring the end. All we know is that the end will come within the generation that sees fulfilled on it the sign that Jesus Christ said would then be in evidence. (See Matthew chapters 24, 25.) All indications are that the fulfillment of this sign began in 1914. So we can be confident that the end is near; we do not have the slightest doubt that God will bring it about, the speaker stressed. But we have to wait and see exactly when, in the meantime keeping busy in God’s service
      Once again, to be clear, the Watchtower made it crystal clear in late 1974 about 1975. Therefore, it is a careless and an unconscionable act by which certain witnesses would consider a false theory by opposers.
    • By Kurt
      Here's something you may not have seen, from the JW archives, a countdown to Armegeddon as we once believed would occur in oct 1914. Our brothers used this to help them keep track on their faith. Just a bit of JW history.
    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
    • By Anna
      Something I thought might be relevant since we are studying the God's Kingdom book. Not long ago, in a WT article, it was mentioned in reference to the "Kingdom being preached in all the inhabited earth" that this will not mean that literally everyone on Earth would have heard about the Kingdom before Armageddon starts.
      When one does a bit of mathematics (not my forte) and calculates the percentage of current Jehovah's Witnesses in comparison to the World's population we arrive at 0.1%. This is a very small percentage indeed. (8 million JW to 8 billion population)
      If we were to assume some averages, and use the United States as a fair example, then we can assume the ratio of 1 publisher to roughly around 400. This seems a fair number since "only a few are the ones finding the road to life". However, as we know, there is practically a non existent ratio when it comes to India and China, two of the world's countries with a population of over 1billion each (the majority of whom have never heard of the Bible, never mind Jehovah's Witnesses).  If we would assume the same ratio of 1:400, then this would immediately create over 3 million Witnesses in each of the two countries, i.e. over 6 million in India and China alone, bringing the total of JWs to over 14 million. If we were to also add 650 thousand in Indonesia, 485 thousand from Pakistan, and 402 thousand from Bangladesh that adds another 1.5 million bringing the total to over 15 million, almost doubling the Witnesses today.
      If we go by the fact that all people are equal in Jehovah's eyes, and that no nation is above another when it comes to salvation, and that all people are basically the same, then we have to assume that there are people in those countries who, if given the chance, would embrace the truth and put themselves on Jehovah's side and create that ratio of 1:400.
      With that in mind, it is evident that either there is going to have to be a lot of preaching done, verging on the miraculous, in order to bring in over 7 million new Witnesses within the allotted time of the "Generation", or, Jehovah will judge their hearts and allow nearly HALF of the people, (agnostics or believers in false Gods) entry into the new world without them even needing to know him.
      Or, is "this Generation" a lot longer than we think.....
      Any scriptural thoughts?
       
    • By Jesus.defender
      1888 "In this chapter we present the Bible evidence proving that the full end of the times of the gentiles, i.e., the full end of their lease of dominion, will be reached in A.D. 1914; and that the date will be the farthest limit of the rule of imperfect men. And be it observed, that if this is shown to be a fact firmly established by the Scriptures, it will prove; Firstly, that at that date the Kingdom of God, for which our Lord taught us to pray, saying, Thy Kingdom come, will obtain full, universal control, and that it will then be set up, or firmly established, in the earth, on the ruins of present institutions." (The Time Is At Hand, 1888, p. 76, 77)
       
       
      1889 "Be not surprised, then, when in subsequent chapters we present proofs that the setting up of the Kingdom of God is already begun, that it is pointed out in prophecy as due to begin the exercise of power in A.D. 1878, and that the 'battle of the great day of God Almighty (Rev. 16:14) which will end in A.D. 1914 with the complete overthrow of earth's present rulership, is already commenced. The gathering of the armies is plainly visible from the standpoint of God's word." (Studies in the Scriptures, Vol. 2, The Time Is At Hand, 1889 Ed., p. 101. The 1915 Edition of this texts changed "A.D. 1914" to read 'A.D. 1915')
       
    • By Jesus.defender
      In 1889, the WT said " we present PROOFS that the setting up of the kingdom of God has already begun...and that 'the battle of the great day of God almighty' (Revelation16:14),which will end in AD1914 with the complete overthrow of the earth's present rulership, is already commenced.".
      The watchtower presented "proofs".
      These "proofs" were wrong, so what credibility do they have to "proclaim" anything?
       
    • By Bible Speaks
      The ‘International Bible Students’ . . . have been proclaiming to the world that the Day of Wrath prophesied in the Bible would dawn in 1914.”
      It is a historical fact worth noting that, on the basis of the points and evidence above presented, the March 1880 edition of the Watch Tower magazine identified the year 1914 as the time for the close of “the appointed times of the nations” (and the end of the lease of power granted the Gentile rulers). 
      This was some 34 years before the arrival of that year and the momentous events it initiated. In the August 30, 1914, edition of The World, a leading New York newspaper at that time, a feature article in the paper’s Sunday magazine section commented on this as follows: “The terrific war outbreak in Europe has fulfilled an extraordinary prophecy. 
      For a quarter of a century past, through preachers and through press, the ‘International Bible Students’ . . . have been proclaiming to the world that the Day of Wrath prophesied in the Bible would dawn in 1914.”
      The events that took place from and after the year 1914 C.E. are well-known history to all, beginning with the great war that erupted, the first world war in mankind’s history and the first to be fought over the issue, not of the domination of Europe alone, nor of Africa, nor of Asia, but of the domination of the world.—Lu 21:7-24, 29-33; Re 11:15-18.
      jw.org

      IMG_6281.mov
    • By Brother Rando
      Being a student of Prophecy and intently studying the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, 1914 is only the beginning of the end. “For nation will rise against nation and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be food shortages and earthquakes in one place after another. ?All these things are a beginning of pangs of distress.” (Matthew 24:7-8)
      In 1914 the world as we know it, has entered into its death throes.  God’s Kingdom would slowly begin crushing all kingdoms of the earth. (Daniel 2:44)  Those inhabiting the earth would enter into an ‘allotted amount of time of distress'. “During that time Michael will stand up, the great prince who is standing in behalf of your people. And there will occur a time of distress such as has not occurred since there came to be a nation until that time. And during that time your people will escape, everyone who is found written down in the book.” (Daniel 12:1)
      What is causing this ‘time of distress’?  “And war broke out in heaven: Michael and his angels battled with the dragon, and the dragon and its angels battled ?but they did not prevail, nor was a place found for them any longer in heaven.” (Rev 12:7-8)  “Woe for the earth and for the sea, because the Devil has come down to you, having great anger, knowing that he has a short period of time.” (Rev 12:12)  Here’s an important teaching from Jesus Christ, he stated, “For just as the days of Noah were, so the presence of the Son of man will be.” (Matthew 24:37)  Did you catch that?  So the presence of the Son of man will be.  Jesus Christ has been ruling from Heaven since 1914 and he compared his presence like the days of Noah!  Few people understand this, but the Days of Noah lasted 120 years. (Genesis 6:3)  Jesus continues, “For as they were in those days before the Flood, eating and drinking, men marrying and women being given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark, ?and they took no note until the Flood came and swept them all away, so the presence of the Son of man will be.” (Matthew 24:38-39)  Folks, the presence of the Son of man is now 103 years from 1914 and counting.  Yet, the World is taking no note.
      The Last Days must reach their full time allotted, which is 120 years.  1914 + 120 = 2034.   Since the Great Tribulation is Spiritual, many will  fall away from the faith. But it’s during this time period that the one’s separated to the right hand of Christ, will come out of the Great Tribulation as Survivors.  In response one of the elders said to me: “These who are dressed in the white robes, who are they and where did they come from?” (Rev 7:13)
      So right away I said to him: “My lord, you are the one who knows.” And he said to me: “These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.” (Rev 7:14)  “Keep on the watch, therefore, because you do not know on what day your Lord is coming.” (Matthew 24:42)
      Armageddon is an act of undeserved kindness of removing the wicked by means of the second death.  Soon, those outside our interior rooms will be dying the second death in the same manner as Adam and Eve. 
       
      For Answers to Your Biblical Questions go to the Jehovah Witness Q & A Forum.  To request a free home Bible Study click here.
    • By Albert Michelson
      What is the good news?
       
      The Bible is clear that even if someone had been clearly selected by god if they deviate from the truth they are to be rejected. 
       
      Galatians 1:8-9 However, even if we or an angel out of heaven were to declare to YOU as good news something beyond what we declared to YOU as good news, let him be accursed.  9 As we have said above, I also now say again, Whoever it is that is declaring to YOU as good news something beyond what YOU accepted, let him be accursed.
       
      This holds even more weight for ones like the GB who are not clearly selected and who's claim to authority rests solely on a demonstrably false interpretation of scripture.
      The organization claims that the 1914 teaching is necessary for salvation and even goes as far as to claim that the 1914 teaching is the good news spoken of in the Bible.
      *** w67 12/15 pp. 753-754 pars. 3-4 What Now Distinguishes the Good News to Be Preached ***
      "What a joy-inspiring addition or enlargement to the good news now to be preached! Now has come the victorious kingdom of our God together with the authority of his Christ, his Messiah! As for Satan the Devil and his demons, they have only a short period of time until they are bound and imprisoned in the abyss after the “war of the great day of God the Almighty” at Armageddon. All this additional wonderful information has been true since the end of the “appointed times of the nations” in 1914, and particularly since World War I closed in the year 1918. Not before the “appointed times of the nations” ended in the fall of 1914 could the good news be preached of the newborn, established heavenly kingdom of God and of his Messiah. This, then, must be the good news that Jesus Christ in his prophecy said had to be preached first in all the nations. (Mark 13:10) This generation of human society that has seen and experienced the world events since the Gentile Times closed in 1914—this is the “generation” that will not pass away until all the things foretold have happened, including the preaching of the good news first in all nations.
      4 Jesus’ prophecy in Mark 13:10, “Also, in all the nations the good news has to be preached first,” has not been undergoing fulfillment during the past nineteen centuries. It is only since the second decade of our twentieth century that this prophecy has been undergoing fulfillment. This began to be realized by the International Bible Students Association and the Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society since the end of the second decade of our century. In the magazine issue of July 1, 1920, of The Watch Tower and Herald of Christ’s Presence the article was published entitled “Gospel of the Kingdom” and based on the theme text, “‘And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.’—Matthew 24:14.”
       It is for this reason that the organization is chained to the 1914 teaching. As the scripture I quoted above demonstrates the Bible says that one who teaches a good news that is false is cursed. If the organization admits that the 1914 and 1919 teachings are false they will have to admit that not only were they not selected as gods channel but that they have been teaching a false good news for the majority of their existence. It is for that reason that they disfellowship and shun people who cannot conscientiously remain in the faith. It's easier to just eliminate the opposition then to actually address the real issues with your theology. 
      *** w86 4/1 pp. 30-31 Questions From Readers ***
      Why have Jehovah’s Witnesses disfellowshipped (excommunicated) for apostasy some who still profess belief in God, the Bible, and Jesus Christ?
       
      "Approved association with Jehovah’s Witnesses requires accepting the entire range of the true teachings of the Bible, including those Scriptural beliefs that are unique to Jehovah’s Witnesses. What do such beliefs include?
       
      That the great issue before humankind is the rightfulness of Jehovah’s sovereignty, which is why he has allowed wickedness so long. (Ezekiel 25:17) That Jesus Christ had a prehuman existence and is subordinate to his heavenly Father. (John 14:28) That there is a “faithful and discreet slave” upon earth today ‘entrusted with all of Jesus’ earthly interests,’ which slave is associated with the Governing Body of Jehovah’s Witnesses. (Matthew 24:45-47) That 1914 marked the end of the Gentile Times and the establishment of the Kingdom of God in the heavens, as well as the time for Christ’s foretold presence. (Luke 21:7-24; Revelation 11:15–12:10) That only 144,000 Christians will receive the heavenly reward. (Revelation 14:1, 3) That Armageddon, referring to the battle of the great day of God the Almighty, is near. (Revelation 16:14, 16; 19:11-21) That it will be followed by Christ’s Millennial Reign, which will restore an earth-wide paradise. That the first to enjoy it will be the present “great crowd” of Jesus’ “other sheep.”—John 10:16; Revelation 7:9-17; 21:3, 4."
       
      This is supposedly a list of the fundamental doctrines of Jehovah's Witnesses that all are required to believe. You will in most cases be disfellowshiped for not believing in one or more of them. Unfortunately the truth is most of them are false.
    • By JW Insider
      Even before C.T.Russell was born, commentaries on Bible prophecy included  dozens of potential dates. Nearly 200 years ago, a couple of them even included 1914 as potentially significant time period. The "1914 presence" doctrine, however, is only about 75 years old.
      All the ideas behind the Watch Tower's version of the 1914 doctrine have already been discussed for decades now, and all of them, so far, have been shown to be problematic from a Scriptural point of view. Since the time that the doctrine generally took its current shape in 1943, the meanings and applications of various portions of Matthew 24 and 25 have already been changed, and the timing of various prophesied events and illustrations have changed. Most recently, the meaning and identification of the "faithful and discreet slave" has changed. And the definition of "generation" has changed about half-a-dozen times. This doesn't mean that the current understandings are impossible, of course, only that it has become less likely from the point of view of reason and reasonableness.
      Besides, for most of the years of teaching this doctrine, we have had the flexibility of extending the "1914 generation" from a possible 40 years, up to 70, then 75, then 80 years. And this has been applied to teenagers who saw 1914, 10-year-olds who saw 1914, then even newborns who saw 1914. With every one of these options already tried and stretched to their limits, we finally were forced to convert the meaning of generation from its most common meanings and give it a new "strained" meaning that has no other Biblical parallel. (See Exodus 1:6; Matthew 1:17; 16:4; 23:36; Luke 11:50)
      But that flexibility is still seen as the last reason for hope that the Watch Tower Society might have still been correct in hanging on to 1914. Since the Bible says that a lifespan is 70 or 80 years and 1914 + 80 = 1994, the "generation" doctrine in its original form (1943) could remain stable until about 1994. Of course, a lifespan could technically reach to 120 years or more, and Gen 6:3 even gives vague support to the idea that the "1914 generation" could last 120 years, until 2034.
      The current alternative solution is to make the generation out of the length of two lifespans, which technically could be double 120 years, or nearly 240 years from 1914. That would have had the potential to reach to the year 2154 (1914+240) except for the caveat that it can, by its new definition, only refer to anointed persons who discerned the sign in 1914 and whose lives overlapped (technically, by as little as one second) with the lifespan of another anointed person representing the second group. If persons from each group don't really discern their own "anointing" until age 20, for example, this would effectively remove 40 years from the overall maximum. 1914+120-20+120-20 = 2114. We could also assume a possible lifespan of more than 120 years, but otherwise, the new two-lifespan generation could potentially make the generation last 200 years. This "technical maximum" is not promoted currently, because for now we look at examples like Fred Franz who was part of that original generation already anointed and who saw the sign, and the typical example of an anointed brother who was apparently "anointed" prior to Franz' death in 1992 would be someone like Governing Body member, Brother Sanderson, who was born in 1965, baptized in 1975, and was already a "special pioneer" in 1991. His is currently 52.
      However, the generation problem is just one more problem now which we can add onto the list of all the other points that make up the 1914 doctrine. Here are several points related to 1914 that appear problematic from a Scriptural point of view:
      All evidence shows the 1914 date is wrong when trying to base it on the destruction of Jerusalem. (Daniel 1:1; 2 Chron 36:1-22; Jer 25:8-12; Zech 1:12, 7:4; Ezra 3:10-13) Paul said that Jesus sat at God's right hand in the first century and that he already began ruling as king at that time. (1 Cor 15:25) Jesus said not to be fooled by the idea that wars and rumors of wars would be the start of a "sign" (Matt 24:4,5) Jesus said that the "parousia" would be as visible as lightning (Matt 24:27). He spoke against people who might say he had returned but was currently not visible. (Matt 24:23-26) Jesus said that his "parousia" would come as a surprise to the faithful, not that they would discern the time of the parousia decades in advance. (Matt 24:36-42) Jesus said that the kingdom would not be indicated by "signs" (Luke 17:20, almost any translation except NWT in this case) The "synteleia" (end of all things together) refers to a concluding event, not an extended period of time (Matt 28:20) Jesus was already called ruler, King and even "King of Kings" in the first century. (1 Tim 6:15, Heb 7:2,17; Rev 1:5; 17:14) Wicked, beastly King Nebuchadnezzar's insanity and humiliation does not represent Jesus as the "lowliest one of mankind." (Heb 1:5,6; 2:10,11; Daniel 4:23-25; cf. Heb 2:7; 1 Pet 3:17,18) The demise of a Gentile kingdom cannot rightly represent the time of the rise of the Gentile kingdoms (Daniel 4:26,27) The Gentile kings did not meet their demise in 1914. (Rev 2:25,26) The time assigned to the Gentile Times that Jesus spoke about in Luke 21:24 is already given as 3.5 times, not 7 times (Revelation 11:2,3) The Devil was already brought down from "heaven" in the first century. (1 John 2:14,15; 1 Pet 5:8; Luke 10:18; Heb 2:14) The Bible says that the "last days" began in the first century. (Acts 2:14-20; 2 Tim 3:1-17; 1 Peter 3:3-5; Heb 1:2, almost any translation except NWT in this case.)
    • By Noble Berean
      "Then, indeed, the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will do away with by the spirit of his mouth and bring to nothing by the manifestation of his presence" (2 Thessalonians 2:8).
      I understand that Jehovah's Witnesses believe Jesus Christ presence began back in 1914. I also understand that JWs believe the clergy of Christendom represent the Man of Lawlessness. However, if that is the case, why have the clergy thrived since 1914? Shouldn't they be brought to "...nothing by the manifestation of his presence"?
    • By JW Insider
      A recent topic about whether the Watchtower view of 607 BCE is SCRIPTURALLY supported is linked below. This new topic should provide a better place to discuss the SECULAR evidence. I also think it would be useful to discuss the methodology that the Watch Tower Society has historically used to treat this evidence.
      I would hope that we can do this without so much side discussions of unrelated topics. To avoid another topic that goes on for 30+ pages where only half of them were on-topic, I would suggest that if we get enough off-topic posts, we merely move them to another more appropriate topic.
      The link to the most recent topic on a similar subject is here:


       
    • By The Librarian
      Master Chronological List > 1914
      Pastor Charles Taze Russell pointed to 1914 as the end of the "Gentile Times" or "The Appointed Times of the Nations."

      Subsequent President of the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society Judge Joseph F. Rutherford established 1914 as the date of "Christ's Invisible Return" and crowning as King of God's Kingdom in 1920 which had been previously believed to be 1878. Hence, Jehovah's heavenly Kingdom is established.

      Jehovah's Witnesses teach that Satan and his demons were cast down to earth from heaven after October 1, 1914 at which point the end times began.

      From 1914 C.E. to the early part of 1918 C.E. or 1,260 days Jehovah's people preached a "sackcloth" message concerning Christendom and the world, in fulfillment of Revelation 11:3, 4. See re pgs. 164-7 pars. 10-18, also see yw pgs. 264-307, also bf pg. 592.

      [KING OF THE NORTH is now Germany, the KING OF THE SOUTH is the alliance between Great Britian and the United States of America, see Daniel 11:27-29], Archduke Francis Ferdinand and his wife, Countess Sophie Chotek, duchess of Hohenberg were assassinated on June 28th in Sarajevo, Bosnia, (now in Bosnia and Herzegovina), by a Serb nationalist. This action precipitated World War I. 
       
      On October 2, 1914, Jesus took the throne. Shortly thereafter, a war in heaven broke out wherein Satan and his demons were cast from the heavens. Satan then became so enraged that he began to wreak havoc upon the earth. One of the first things he did was to start the Great War (WWI). So WWI must have started a few days after October 2, 1914.
       
      “World War I set the violent twentieth century in motion. It was the first use of chemical weapons; the first mass bombardment of civilians from the sky; the century’s first genocide.” So begins the 1996 PBS series The Great War and the Shaping of the Twentieth Century.


      The war’s horrendous prosecution and unsatisfactory end were made even worse by the Versailles Peace Conference, a conclave which created the false peace that only allowed the combatants to rearm and proceed to a second conflict which was even more destructive than the first one. World War II merely took up the Great War’s unfinished business. Indeed many historians call both conflicts Europe’s “Second Thirty Years’ War.”

      The First World War led to the birth of the first communist dictatorship. The world flirted with nuclear destruction as that dictatorship engaged in a murderous rivalry with its erstwhile allies. When the USSR finally imploded, some of the splinter states which emerged from its ruins fell to either fighting among themselves or suffering internecine bloodletting. And the problems elsewhere in southwest Asia as well as the Middle East can be traced to hatreds fostered by European colonialism which the Great War only intensified.

      The world we have today had its birth pangs in World War I. It was Austria-Hungary’s invasion of Serbia on 28 July 1914 that caused a myriad of dominoes to fall—and they are continuing to tumble even now.


      The war shattered an entire world order. In 1914, sixty percent of the world's population lived under the rule of kingdoms or empires. Today less than ten percent do so. The only important royal dynasty to survive the war was the House of Windsor and that was not without challenge. The fragmentation of these empires led to the rise of independent states which continues down to this day as the doctrine of "self-determination", promulgated by Wilson at Versailles, continues to govern many movements in our time.

      But what makes the Great War different from its predecessors is that it was the first fought in all four quarters of the globe and by blocs of nations as opposed to just a few. Its carnage also was unmatched in previous world history. Nobody knows how many actually died although estamates range from fourteen to twenty million. Among its aftershocks were the Spanish Flu, the pandemic that killed more people than the war itself, and widespread famine. So to say that the Great War was not much different from earlier ones entirely misses the point,
       
        Post by Jehovah's Witnesses News, Library, History, Videos, Talks, Illustrations.  
       
      July 28, 1914. Austria-Hungary declares war on Serbia. August 1, 1914. Germany Declares War on Russia. August 3, 1914. Germany declares war on France. August 4, 1914. Britain declares war on Germany. August 6, 1914. Austria declares war on Russia. April 6, 1917 - The United States declares war on Germany.
      Depiction from the Nov 1, 2014 Watchtower:

      Older depiction from the 1982 book "You Can Live Forever in Paradise on Earth":

      Related Links and Questions
      Jehovah’s Witnesses gather for convention - 1914 and 2014 - USA-Texas-Arlington - USA-Texas Fort Worth

      1914-2014 - One Hundred Years of Kingdom Rule!

      Where did you find the theme text for 1914?

      Jesus said that "This generation will not pass away until all these things occur." Did he mean the generation that saw saw World War 1 in 1914?

      What shows that Christ became King in 1914?

      When Jesus began ruling as King in 1914, was that the start of the Millennial reign of the Messianic Kingdom?

      IBSA Historical Video from that year 

       
      Watchtower Publications from 1914
      YearText: “Be strong and courageous.” Joshua 1:9
      w-E * The Watch Tower 
      Countdown Card 
      Berean Studies on The New Creation - C.T. Russell 
      The Photo-Drama of Creation 
      What Say the Scriptures About Our Lord's Return (his Parousia, Apokalupsis and Epiphania)


      Return to the Master List of Watchtower Publications listed by Year

      Watchtower_May_15_1984_pages_1_to_7.pdf
      Previous Watchtower Publications quotations concerning 1914
      “Some persons living A.D. 1914 when the series of foretold events began will also be living when the series ends with Armageddon.” - The Watchtower, September 1, 1952, p. 543

      THE TRAIN ILLUSTRATION - Awake!, October 8, 1968, p. 5

      “The fact that fifty-four years of the period called the ‘last days’ have already gone by is highly significant. It means that only a few years, at most, remain before the corrupt system of things dominating the earth is destroyed by God...Jesus was obviously speaking about those who were old enough to witness with understanding what took place when the ‘last days’ began. Jesus was saying that some of those persons who were alive at the appearance of the ‘sign of the last days’ would still be alive when God brought this system to its end.” - Awake!, October 8, 1968, p. 13


      “But there are people still living who were alive in 1914 and saw what was happening then and who were old enough that they still remember those events. This generation is getting up in years now. A great number of them have already passed away in death. Yet Jesus very pointedly said: ‘This generation will by no means pass away until all these things occur.’ Some of them will still be alive to see the end of this wicked system. This means that only a short time is left before the end comes!” - The Truth That Leads To Eternal Life, 1968 ed., p. 95

      “However, there are people still living who were alive in 1914 and saw what was happening then and who were old enough that they still remember those events. This generation is getting up in years now. A great number of them have already passed away in death. Yet Jesus very pointedly said: ‘This generation will by no means pass away until all these things occur.’ Some of them will still be alive to see the end of this wicked system. This means that only a short time is left before the end comes!” - The Watchtower, February 15, 1969, p. 101

      “Men of this world offer you nothing stable, nothing sure. Their promises and predictions of better things have failed time and again. Why let yourself be carried along with them in a steadily downward course to ultimate disaster due to rejecting God’s will? God’s prophetic Word has not failed. Time has confirmed its truthfulness, its unerring accuracy. The generation that saw the start of the time of distress that began in 1914 is now dwindling in numbers. Before it passes off the scene the prophesied ‘great tribulation’ will come. You can be among the joyful survivors, experience deliverance from a world system that has proved oppressive, unworkable and death dealing.” - The Watchtower, February 1, 1971, p. 69

      “And the remaining ones of that generation of 1914 are still talking about it. Some of them will be talking about it right down to the time when the ‘great tribulation’ wipes Satan’s wicked system of things off the face of our globe. For Jesus Christ himself assures us: ‘Truly I say to you that this generation [the generation that saw the ‘beginning of pangs of distress’ in 1914] will by no means pass away [completely] until all these things occur. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will by no means pass away.’--Matthew 24:3,8,34,35.” - The Watchtower, May 1, 1982, p. 15

      “After drawing attention to the many things that have marked the period from 1914 onward, Jesus said: ‘This generation will by no means pass away until all these things [including the end of this system] occur.’ (Matthew 24:34,14) Which generation did Jesus mean? He meant the generation of people who were living in 1914. Those persons yet remaining of that generation are now very old. However, some of them will still be alive to see the end of this wicked system. So of this we can be certain: Shortly now there will be a sudden end to all wickedness and wicked people at Armageddon. Some of the generation living in 1914 will see the end of the system of things and survive it.” - You Can Live Forever In Paradise On Earth, 1982 ed. p. 154

      ILLUSTRATION: “1914 The Generation That Will Not Pass Away” - The Watchtower, May 15, 1984, title page

      “If Jesus used ‘generation’ in that sense and we apply it to 1914, then the babies of that generation are now 70 years old or older. And others alive in 1914 are in their 80’s or 90’s, a few even having reached a hundred. There are still many millions of that generation alive. Some of them ‘will by no means pass away until all things occur.’ --Luke 21:32” - The Watchtower, May 15, 1984, p. 5

      “From a purely human viewpoint, it could appear that these developments could hardly take place before the generation of 1914 disappears from the scene. But fulfillment of all the foretold events affecting the generation of 1914 does not depend on comparatively slow human action. Jehovah’s prophetic word through Christ Jesus is: ‘This generation [of 1914] will by no means pass away until all things occur.’ (Luke 21:32) And Jehovah, who is the source of inspired and unfailing prophecy, will bring about the fulfillment of his Son’s words in a relatively short time.--Isaiah 46:9,10; 55:10,11.”
      - The Watchtower, May 15, 1984, pp. 6-7

      “Today, a small percentage of mankind can still recall the dramatic events of 1914. Will that elderly generation pass away before God saves the earth from ruin? Not according to Bible prophecy. ‘When you see all these things,’ Jesus promised, ‘know that he is near at the doors. Truly I say to you that this generation will by no means pass away until all these things occur.’--Matthew 24:33,34” - The Watchtower, May 1, 1992, p. 3

      “Most important, this magazine builds confidence in the Creator’s promise of a peaceful and secure new world before the generation that saw the events of 1914 passes away.” - Awake!, October 22, 1995, p. 4


      “Eager to see the end of this evil system, Jehovah’s people have at times speculated about the time when the ‘great tribulation’ would break out, even tying this to calculations of what is the lifetime of a generation since 1914. However, we ‘bring a heart of wisdom in,’ not by speculating about how many years or days make up a generation, but by thinking about how we ‘count our days’ in bringing joyful praise to Jehovah. (Psalm 90:12) Rather than provide a rule for measuring time, the term ‘generation’ as used by Jesus refers principally to contemporary people of a certain historical period, with their identifying characteristics.” - The Watchtower, November 1, 1995, p. 17


      “Therefore, in the final fulfillment of Jesus’ prophecy today, ‘this generation’ apparently refers to the peoples of earth who see the sign of Christ’s presence but fail to mend their ways...Does our more precise viewpoint on ‘this generation’ mean that Armageddon is further away than we had thought? Not at all! Though we at no time have known the ‘day and hour,’ Jehovah God has always known it, and he does not change.” - The Watchtower, November 1, 1995, pp. 19-20

      “Most important, this magazine builds confidence in the Creator’s promise of a peaceful and secure new world that is about to replace the present wicked, lawless system of things.” - Awake!, November 8, 1995, p. 4
       
      One hundred years on from the Great War

       
    • By Jack Ryan
      Is there good support for our use of this year archaeologically and historically speaking?
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    • I voted your remark "sad" because it truly is. It is a meaningless non-sequitur with no relevance ... which you think is profound.
    • Maybe you jw's will get lucky and your hero Hitler will start ruling again.
    • Trump is a pugilist, fully capable of vulgarity. It doesn’t really bother me. In some regards, it is refreshingly candid. It is not for nothing that the Bible calls the political nations “beasts.” They behave that way—ripping and tearing at each other and indeed, at anyone who gets in their way. So I am not put off by someone who drops the pretense and carries on to call a spade a spade. As much as ones might like the facade of being “presidential,” and of respecting the “dignity” of fellow world leaders, ought they not produce results to earn that respect? The hospital operating room can expect awed dignity when it routinely save lives—conducting the most delicate of procedures. But if the results degenerate to indistinguishable from that of a butcher shop, surely that aura of admiration will fade. “Laws are like sausages. It’s better not to see them being made,” is the old saying, and it is the butcher shop comparison that wins out over the precision operating room. It almost does my heart good to see Trump brawling with his political counterparts as they do their utmost to preserve “dignity.”  Moreover, you would almost expect Jehovah’s (American) servants to see that. They don’t because they truly are apolitical. They follow politics hardly at all, and there is a fair number of them that consider even a comment about the topic as akin to ripping a loud one at the concert hall—it is just gauche—it is as though deliberately contaminating the soufflé with the street rock salt. The JW Governing Body works hard to keep the squabbles of politics out of the congregation and to safeguard its neutrality.  Keeping truly neutral is not easy. Geoffrey Jackson reflects on how (Australian) candidates of his youth offered dramatically different proposals regarding the military draft—a matter that would affect him greatly. Updating his struggle to the present—adapting it to brothers today who might be personally advantaged or disadvantaged by the proposals of a given political figure—he ventured on how some might truly strive to be neutral and yet in the back of their head was the thought: “I hope that idiot doesn’t come into power.” He said it about two years ago. It is impossible for me not to wonder what “idiot”—if there was one—he had in mind.  Of course, Witnesses are politically neutral due to their advocacy for God’s kingdom—the one of the Sermon on the Mount—“thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” “God’s will is done in heaven,” I tell the householder as I glance upward. “I mean, I guess it is—surely he has it all running smoothly up there—but it sure isn’t done on earth. Pockets of it here and there may be, but nobody would ever say that the world runs that way it does today according to God’s will. According to the prayer, we should not expect that until the kingdom comes.” Jehovah’s Witnesses don’t go campaigning for human governments because they are announcing God’s government which will tackle and solve the problems human governments consistently flounder on. If Witnesses today did reflect on national politics—and the particulars are replicated in many nations—they might reflect that Trump’s enemies are the “one world government” people of the humanist variety—180 degrees apart from the one world government of the “God’s kingdom” variety. They are the humanists who would rise above national boundaries to blur or even erase them. They are humanists who yet pursue the dream of the League of Nations, reinvigorated after WWII as the United Nations. A worldwide blending of peoples and their interests into one common government by man, incorporating whatever is the humanistic thinking holding sway at the time. These ones fully expect those of government (largely themselves) to be granted dignity in light of the noble task they have assumed—it doesn’t matter if praiseworthy results are slow to come—it is the intention that matters. The common working people know it is a crock. They see their own interests being sold out for the loftier “higher” interests of these they would call the “elites.” Their economic interests are tamped down. Their moral values are shoved aside. They are astounded, to take an example, to think that biological differences should not determine male and female, and dismayed to see the view that completely defies their common sense and all of recorded history take the world by storm under the new tidal wave of humanists. They don’t think these guys deserve any dignity at all, so when a photo-shopped Trump is bare-knuckle boxing with the CNN moniker (bastion of world-government think), they love it, and they also love it that the dignified crowd are aghast. ....To highlight the GB’s challenge in encouraging all to stay on the same neutral page, I wrote the following in No Fake News but Plenty of Hogwash: “They just about succeeded in their mission to re-instill complete neutrality – they were alllmmoooost there, when along came the summer Olympics in Rio. On the second day of the Olympics, I mentioned to Tom Pearlsnswine in the field ministry that Hillary had worn a bright pants suit. “Christians are no part of the world!” he rebuked me. On the third day of the Olympics, at the Kingdom Hall, I told him that Trump had tied his shoe. “We must fix our eyes on Jerusalem above!” he said. On the fifth day of the Olympics, I dropped by his home while he was watching the games on TV. He screamed: “Look at that medal count, Tommy!” he shouted. “We’re cleaning up!”  
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