JW Insider

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  1. (2 Corinthians 3:1-3) 3 Are we starting to recommend ourselves again? Or do we need, like some men, letters of recommendation to you or from you? 2 You yourselves are our letter, inscribed on our hearts and known and being read by all mankind. 3 For you are shown to be a letter of Christ written by us as ministers, inscribed not with ink but with the spirit of a living God, not on stone tablets but on fleshly tablets, on hearts.
  2. Message from the US Branch Committee RE: Hurricane Irma

    Don't get the point you are making about the Patterson picture, unless it's that they have an even older version of the scrolls (pre-pre-2013) and the brother from Spain off to the left is in very poor light. This picture was still at Patterson last year on the tour route. I suspect it already got moved to Warwick. First thing I noticed when I saw this painting about 6 years ago is that the tall lamp makes a distinct shadow, but none of the apostles, etc., make any shadows. Reminds me of this picture:
  3. I'm breaking up my last post into two posts after all, so that the E.R.A. machine information and suggestions about telepathy etc, do not get too mixed up with the rest of the discussion. I've also added a longer quote from Russell at the end where he speaks to the rise in spiritism and psychic phenomena. On page 79, 80 of his book on spiritism, Greber apparently touches upon the phenomenon that lies behind the E.R.A. machines that the Society once promoted: Od flows through all parts of terrestrial bodies and radiates beyond them to a certain distance. This radiation which surrounds terrestrial bodies has been called 'aura' by your scientists. Everything in creation has such an odic aura.... The odic aura surrounds the material body like a halo.... This force manifests itself by vibrations of the od.... All thought and volition are expressed in the corresponding odic vibrations, set in motion by the spirit, as the bearer of the od.... A sage of ancient times observed: 'Everything is in a state of flux'. He should have said: 'Everything is in a state of vibration'.... You will see at once that the harmony in odic vibrations stands for beauty, health, happiness, peace and good fortune, whereas discord in such vibrations must be the cause of ugliness, sickness, suffering and unhappiness. (Page 79,80) I didn't want to get back into the "Goodrich, Abrams, Woodworth, Hudgings, Rutherford" discussion of a previous thread, but the connection seems obvious. Dr. Abrams made it obvious by turning the discussion about the power of these Radio Vibration healing machines (and RDK: Radio Disease Killer machine) into one about mental telepathy that could work much farther away from the person being healed. Also, in spite of Woodworth's denials that this type of healing had anything to do with spiritism, it seems he inadvertently admitted that he knew just how close to the edge he was playing when he tried to negate some of the theories that Upton Sinclair had made in a book called "Mental Radio": Sinclair Mixing Up in Demonism UPTON SINCLAIR has written a book, Mental Radio, narrating the experiments of himself and his wife in telepathy. He says, in one place, "The subconscience answers questions, and its answers are always false.... the deep mind, answers questions too, and these answers come, not quietly, but as if by inspiration...." We merely add that the demons are teasing Mr. Sinclair. (Golden Age, January 20, 1932, p. 249.) In 1925 The Golden Age even published an article, quoting Brother (Dr.) Pottle showing how these ERA machines might explain palmistry, phrenology, physiognamy, chiromancy, etc: It also explains why the character of men can be described in terms of facial features, known as Physiognomy, or cranial characteristics with the scientific term of Phrenology, or even by the fingernails or by the palm, or by the spine, or by the feet. There are books published on each of these arts separately; and if we were only sufficiently intelligent we undoubtedly could determine what a person thinks or does chiefly, his qualifications, etc., merely from a piece of his skin, a hair, or a drop of blood. Abrams scientifically demonstrated this fact in many details, although experiments are as yet in their infancy. The body throughout tells our story of life; the vibrations show what we are, and do not lie. (Golden Age, February 25, 1925, p. 333.) I read somewhere else that the Golden Age claimed that it rarely ever reviewed a book unless they thought it was very important. And Upton Sinclair and Angels and Women were two that got formal reviews. Russell seemed to believe that mental telephathy was possible too, based on this quote from the Golden Age, February 25, 1925: ...thought is conducted by an electronic vibratory method. Dr. Abrams was the first to demonstrate that theory through a mechanical instrument. It also explains the hitherto mysteries of so-called mental telepathy, mind reading, and woman's intuition, of which Pastor Russell spoke upon several occasions. (p. 332) As to just how the prayers of one may benefit another we may not know. We have not sufficient information to philosophize on it very deeply. We might surmise certain mental influences proceeding from one to another, just as we know electrical influences to proceed from one station to another thousands of miles away. The powers of the mind are something not comprehended. We can influence ourselves, and, to a certain extent, influence another. One mind can influence another without a word, by some telepathic power. (Russell, source not found, sermon?) God created Father Adam the king of earth. Had he remained loyal to his God, he would have retained not only his life and health and happiness, but also his kingly authority over the beasts, the fish and the fowl--ruling them with telepathic powers. (Russell, Watch Tower, February 1915, p. 5636) I add the following from the August 1909 Watch Tower p.227 (4441) just to show the same point made in this thread that spiritism was gaining ground even among scientists and professors and persons of high station. I only kept the heading "Spritism Conquering Scientists" because it was apparently intended to be a bit provocative, but there were several other headings between other paragraphs that I left out, so it isn't that the entire article was focused on this one heading. Russell mentions Eddyism (Christian Science) and the Emmanuel movement about the use of "suggestion" as a help to patients. (Elsewhere Russell identified hypnotism with spiritism.) SPIRITISM CONQUERING SCIENTISTS . . . The Bible alone gives us the key to Spiritism's power, showing that it is by the fallen angels, demons, who personate the dead so as to deceive mankind and to favor various falsities and superstitions built upon the error that the dead are alive. The Bible also foretells that at this time the wise men of the world will be deceived. Note the evidence of this in the following item which is going the rounds of the press:-- "Mme. Blavatsky was exposed in India by a strenuous Australian investigator, Richard Hodgson, who afterward settled down in Boston, where he became head of the old American branch of the British Society for Psychical Research, and where also he met Professor James, who took him to see Mrs. Piper. Dr. Hodgson studied this woman for eighteen years and she convinced him that telepathy, automatic writing and communication with the dead were bona fide phenomena. To give her a special test, Dr. Hodgson arranged a unique course of experiments, in which he was aided by Dr. James H. Hyslop, professor of logic and ethics at Columbia. . . . "The professor masked himself and disguised his voice during his visits to her, and while she lay unconscious, with her head upon a pillow resting on a table, her hand wrote out messages alleged to come from his father. She converted Hyslop to the spiritistic hypothesis, and his announcement of the fact made a stir in the scientific world. He and Hodgson formed a compact that whoever died first would communicate with the other, and Professor Hyslop expressed some time ago his satisfaction that he has received messages from Hodgson since the latter's death. "Across the deep no less a proportion of thinking men have turned their thoughts in the same direction. Caesare Lombroso, the great Italian criminologist and anthropologist, after having studied the medium, Eusapia Paladino, has announced his belief in disembodied spirits, although he does not indorse the theory of the return of the dead. Professor Charles Richet, of the Faculty of Medicine, Paris, is a French leader in psychical research work and claims to have photographed the spirit of a Spanish soldier, while Camille Flammarion, the French astronomer, is now an aggressive convert to Spiritism. He says that he has proved that such phenomena as the movement of chairs without contact and the suspension of heavy tables in space are bona fide. "No less than an ex-prime minister has recently been a leader of the ghost hunters of England, where he recently served as president of the Society of Psychical Research. He insists that science cannot explain the psychic wonders which he has witnessed. While he headed the society it made a special investigation of 350 cases of aparitions of the dying in England and Wales, and of these fifty-two cases were accepted as beyond the laws of chance or the possibility of fraud. "William T. Stead has become a medium, so he now says--a writing medium, not one of the tambourine and trumpet band. At first the noted editor accepted telepathy and claimed to have written down the thoughts of living men many miles away. Then, of late years, he alleges, he has gotten into close communion with the dead. But it is only this year that he claims to have developed automatic writing, his right arm becoming impassive while its fingers guide a pen over paper on which appear letters from his son, the brilliant young writer, William, who died a year ago last Christmas eve. Mr. Stead claims that this writing appears without his exercising any will power to either hold the pen or move it. "If the English-speaking public was surprised to hear that Mr. Stead had strayed thus far into the spiritualist camp, it was startled to learn a few months ago that Sir Oliver Lodge, head of the University of Birmingham, had announced his belief in such communication with those beyond the grave. In a recent journal of the Society for Psychical Research he has given details of messages which he claims to have received from dead members of the society through the pen of a writing medium." "The spread of Eddyism and the Emmanuel movement merely emphasises the fact that we have another potent weapon at our command," said Dr. William H. Dieffenbach, of New York, in his annual presidential address to the National Society of Physical Therapeutics, affiliated with the American Institute of Homeopathy, which was recently in session in Detroit. "The use of suggestion to patients," continued the doctor, "should be studied and taught as should every other agent promising relief in the cure of the sick."
  4. This stuff is all very new to me. Until tonight I have never read about any spiritists, and the only one I'm learning anything about is Johannes Greber at the moment. If possible, I also plan to learn a bit about what Mary Baker Eddy (Christian Science) may have claimed that made Woodworth draw a comparison between himself and her. Russell and Woodworth seemed to imply that there were some similarities among the claims of "spiritists" so I suppose that any of these groups is a place to start. In the meantime, please tell whatever you think is relevant about this Atlantean Society. The following "foundation" material should be long enough that no one who doesn't really want to read it will want to read it. Also, I normally would try to spend enough time to absorb a few hundred pages of material about the subject before I share anything, but I am getting a lot of the following from some sites I downloaded years ago, and I have not really checked out the material for myself yet. Page numbers for the references may even be off, because I do not own Greber's book and have no access to it. I only have direct access to the Watchtower's side of this story. Johannes Greber wrote a book called "Communication with the Spirit World" in 1932, in which he claimed that it was a Christian's duty to communicate with the good spirits and be able to distinguish the bad ones. If, therefore, we, as faithful servants of God, or at any rate, as honest seekers after the truth, try to get into touch with the world of good spirits we are committing no sin, but rather, obeying one of God's commandments; an important commandment, for only through contact with the world of good spirits can we arrive at the truth. There is no other way. . . . From these fetters of error mankind can be freed only, if God will send his spirits as heralds of the truth. (Page 6, 7) At the same time, even throughout this same year, Rutherford claimed that because the "Holy Spirit" had ceased in 1918 that God was sending his angels as ministers and heralds of the truth for those in the Temple class. Curiously, we just saw where Russell had spoken about the beliefs of spiritists as to whether the spirit was able to materialize only in the dark or also in the light. Russell said, this in 1911 which Woodworth re-quoted in the Finished Mystery in 1917 along with the idea about repentant fallen angels from Noah's day: The "chains of darkness" we believe to be a figurative statement signifying that they were no longer permitted to materialize in the light and, generally, not able to materialize at all. (September 1911 Watch Tower) Greber had a lot to say on this very point, also discussing about 6 levels of spiritistic activity (often through mediums) that could include speech, speech through an inspirational medium, automatic writing, seance table tapping and materializing in the dark. Some, they say, could use material or materialized objects. "It is therefore childish and a sign of your profound ignorance in such matters, to ridicule the fact that many spiritistic phenomena can be produced successfully only in the dark. Some of your scientists even assert that darkness is insisted upon only because it facilitates the concealment of 'spiritistic humbug'." (Page 91) On page 79, 80 of the book Greber discusses the phenomenon that lies behind the E.R.A. machines that the Society once promoted: [This section of quotes has been moved to a later post; see below.] Greber also claimed that the way to keep from talking to a bad spirit was to have them take the vow. An oath, he called it, in the name of God that they were not lying. "You know that I am telling you the truth in this, as I have done in all else. You have had plenty of proof of the fact that I am a truthful spirit. For this you have my oath, taken in the name of the Almighty, the true God." (p. 263) Speaking of oaths related to spiritism, "The Vow" that Russell pushed as a kind of loyalty oath was something that the Bethel family repeated every day as part of their morning worship, similar to a daily pledge of allegiance. This was the very item (The Vow) over which Woodworth says he came under the control of the demons, and about which the demons offered him true Biblical and spiritual knowledge. (Because, sometimes the demons tell the truth, he said.) It's what kept Woodworth from accepting that Russell was the Faithful and Discreet Slave, until Russell proved that he really was by pointing out a flaw in Woodworth's reasoning. Here is a portion from the 1975 Yearbook: *** yb75 pp. 51-52 Part 1—United States of America *** At Bethel was located C. T. Russell’s study. Downstairs was the dining room, with a long table that would accommodate forty-four persons. The family would assemble here to sing a hymn, read the “Vow” and join in prayer before breakfast. . . .Would you like to hear the vow that was daily impressed on their minds? Entitled “My Solemn Vow to God,” it goes like this: “Our Father which art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. May thy rule come into my heart more and more, and thy will be done in my mortal body. Relying on the assistance of thy promised grace to help in every time of need, through Jesus Christ our Lord, I register this Vow.. . . “I Vow to thee that I will be on the alert to resist everything akin to Spiritism and Occultism, and that, remembering that there are but the two masters, I shall resist these snares in all reasonable ways, as being of the Adversary. . . .Recitation of this vow was later discontinued among God’s people at Bethel and elsewhere. Another curious parallel between the Watchtower publications and Greber was that the medium Greber communicated with believed that the fallen angels could repent and be saved. On page 297 of Greber's book, he says that even Lucifer would ultimately be saved. The point is also repeated that Lucifer and Christ Jesus were brothers, Christ being made first, then Lucifer second. (Page 267-268). Rutherford also repeated this same point in his own books that Jesus and Lucifer were brothers.
  5. I don't mind bringing it back to its A&W roots here. Angels and Women (A&W) was already discussed around these parts once, and I think you had apparently done some good research on it, if I remember right. I don't think it does much good to guess what was going on in the minds of Russell, Woodworth and Rutherford, but Allen pointed to the particular Golden Age magazine that provides an explanation for a start. I think we can start there or even go back a little farther. I have numbered some sentences and paragraphs of that article so I can reference them. Review of Book "ANGELS AND WOMEN" is the title of a book just off the press. It is a reproduction and revision of the novel, "Seola" which was written in 1878, and which deals with conditions prior to the flood. Pastor Russell read this book with keen interest, and requested some of his friends to read it because of its striking harmony with the Scriptural account of the sons of God described in the sixth chapter of Genesis. Those sons of God became evil, and debauched the human family prior to, and up to, the time of the great deluge. We call attention to this book because we believe it will be of interest to Bible Students, who are familiar with the machinations of the devil and the demons and the influence exercised by them prior to the flood and also now in this evil day. The book throws light on the subject and is believed, will aid those who carefully consider it to avoid the baneful effects of spiritism, now so prevalent in the world. The book is revised and published by a personal friend of Pastor Russell, and one who was close to him in his work. It is published by the A. B. Abac Company, New York city. The publishers advise that the regular price of the book is $2.00; but to all subscribers to The Golden Age, it will furnished at $1.00 per volume, when ordered in lots of ten or more. This is not an advertisement, but a voluntary comment. Remember that this is from December 1924. The original book was written in 1878, which brings up an interesting question (speculative) about whether Russell read it prior to a point he made in the very first Watchtower in July 1879 when he said that truth is truth even if it comes from Satan. This was a phrase that both Rutherford and Woodworth re-quoted from Russell on occasion. But Russell said more on the subject. I don't want to skip too much from context so I will only deal with this first point from the numbered paragraphs above in this post: In a 1911 Watch Tower, with the same idea repeated again in 1914, Russell claimed that some of the "fallen angels" were probably already being judged in fulfillment of Paul's words saying "Do you not know that we will judge angels?" Russell thought these would be the same angels held in Tartarus in bonds of dense darkness. But now released with a higher degree of freedom. Depending on how they handled this freedom, some would no doubt be repentant and gain forgiveness. The following is from the September 1911 Watch Tower in the article: "The Judgment of the Angels." Keep in mind that the theory behind the promotion of the book "Angels and Women" was that it was dictated in 1878 by one of the fallen angels who had repented and desired to do God's will. Since about this time, the anointed might even have currently (since 1878 at least) held some kind of power over them and might be involved in judging them. -------------------------rest of this post is a long quotation from the 1911 Watchtower-------------------------- THEIR JUDGMENT PROBABLY NOW We have answered in previous issues of THE WATCH TOWER that this trial will be, we believe, at the very beginning of this Great Day. And why at the beginning? For the reason that there is only one way, so far as we can see, in which these fallen angels can have a trial, their trial consisting in having a fuller opportunity to sin, if they so desire, or an opportunity to show, if they wish, that they are sick of sin and desire to return to harmony with God. . . . THEY ARE CONFINED TO EARTH'S ATMOSPHERE The Apostles Peter and Jude tell us that after their wrong course these angels were separated from association with the heavenly and holy angels, who were in harmony with God, and were cast down to tartarus, to our earth's atmosphere, "to be reserved in chains of darkness until the Judgment of the Great Day." What does that expression mean? The "chains of darkness" we believe to be a figurative statement signifying that they were no longer permitted to materialize in the light and, generally, not able to materialize at all. But of late spiritists claim, and we believe truthfully, that these spirits can now materialize in as real and tangible flesh as any human being possesses. As they state, and as the facts prove, this can be done only under certain circumstances; they still have a great deal of difficulty in materializing in the light. The "chains of darkness" still seem to be on them to some extent. Spiritists further claim, however, that the spirits are breaking these bonds and that gradually they will be able to do fully in the light everything that they can now do in the dark, and even more than this. The Bible corroborates what the spiritists claim, only that the spiritists teach that these things are done by the dead; who, the spirits tell, are more alive after death than before. Spiritists assert that it is the spirits of dead human beings that materialize. But the Bible takes the opposite position and says that these spirits are the fallen angels, and that so far as humanity are concerned, the dead are totally dead and must remain so until the resurrection. So, then, the Bible and the Spiritists are in decided conflict; and yet there is this harmony that we speak of, namely, that at the time of the Judgment of the Great Day we may expect the bonds restraining these spirits to be loosened. Of course God could hold them in restraint; but He will now permit these fallen angels to have a great lease of liberty. Then will come to them a great trial and testing, or judgment, in respect to their willingness or unwillingness to do according to the Divine will. SOME OF THEM PROBABLY REPENTANT It would not surprise us if some of the fallen angels who sinned in the past have repented and have had long centuries of experience with the unrepentant ones; and that these have suffered persecutions from those of evil mind. And so there may thus be two classes among the fallen angels; the one class desirous of doing the will of God and the other class, like Satan himself, wilfully opposed to the will of God. The trial time will prove each of these angels and manifest to which class each belongs. We think, too, that we see in the Scriptures a passage which we had not seen with the same force before --a Scripture that seems to give a thought along this very line. It seems to imply that at a very near date probably these fallen angels will have wonderful power, such as they have never had since the days of the flood, and that this wonderful power will be used in a very malevolent manner, to stir up mankind to evil doing; and that this will be the key, the secret connected with the awful time of trouble which the Bible tells us will mark the conclusion of this Age and which will constitute the forerunner or beginning of the New Dispensation. . . . The Bible says that Satan is the Prince of the Power of the Air, that he is the Prince of Demons. (Eph. 2:2; Matt. 9:34.) Therefore we understand that in this symbolical sense "the powers of the air" are the demons; that these powers of the air that are being held until the saints of God shall have been sealed in their foreheads, are these fallen angels. As soon as the power that is now controlling them shall be removed, we shall have a reign of evil all over the earth. The evil spirits will do all the evil that is in their power, and this will constitute the trial of all the fallen angels--the lifting of the restraints to see whether they will go contrary to the Divine will. All who thus manifest their alliance with evil in any way will become subjects of the Second Death; while others who show their loyalty to God will mark themselves as worthy, presumably, of everlasting life. It may be something in connection with the saints that will constitute the test of these angels. However, we need not wait many years until we shall know.
  6. And I'm now editing out my reference to it. It's now a mystery!
  7. Yes, you are right. I was focused on what we can know about them based on the experiences we hear reported from all over the world, and how much of this appears tied to what we can know from Biblical examples. Also, I hadn't yet reached the post where you had yourself quoted the same scripture in 2 Cor 2:11 and made the correct point very clearly. There, we must agree to agree. Nothing explicit I would agree, but I think there are sufficient examples to sensitize a Christian conscience of the need to keep clear of certain items. True, I would not own a Ouija board, but if I were a brother who drove a truck for the Postal Services, Fed Ex, "Toys R Us" stores or "Amazon" I wouldn't care less whether someone had just sold either a brand new or a seance-used Ouija board and I was delivering it. I had a book called "Witchcraft in Europe, 400-1700: A Documentary History" on a shelf in my office library (at home) and a sister (who must have gotten "lost" after a circuitous trip to an upstairs bathroom) saw it and chided me for it. I removed it from the shelf, but I still own it and might even get around to reading it someday. That's a given. But do we want to be a part of helping the Devil get the word out that he can possess objects if he cannot? That may have been what we were doing when we warned people that things they buy from Goodwill and garage sales might be possessed. No, I haven't. But where rationalizations are rational, or based on the Bible, we can surely discuss whether or not we are truly letting our reasonableness be known to all. I went to school in a rural area of Missouri for several years where several houses in our area were "haunted" according to schoolmates and even some of the Witnesses. When the rural school was closed after I attended from 1964-1970, I moved into the city school. I learned that the people in the city school who lived on the properties next to those old abandoned houses never believed the stories, and had been through those houses themselves, and that it mostly used by boys taking their young girlfriends who would be the ones to be scared. So I admit that my feelings about haunted houses are skewed away from the typical beliefs that several others in the congregation had. We had a brother who came up from Florida who loved telling ghost stories. He seemed to have so many that I didn't trust him to be telling the truth all the time. So I would agree again that I probably rationalized away a lot of what he claimed, and believed it to be false. But, like Anna, I would happily hear about experiences to help me get a fuller picture.
  8. No. I've finished all the relevant parts. I thought that the population portions would be the most disturbing, but at the most general level, they are hardly different than anything the Watchtower or Awake would say on the subject. There is a need to develop strategies to mitigate both the adverse impact on the environment of human activities and the adverse impact of environmental change on human populations. The world's population is expected to exceed 8 billion by the year 2020. Sixty per cent of the world' s population already live in coastal areas, while 65 per cent of cities with populations above 2.5 million are located along the world coasts; several of them are already at or below the present sea level. (page 32) As is typical of humans and human governments, they know where the problems are and even know what to do about it, but capitalism (always a form of greed, so far) gets in the way. We look back on this document and can see how amazingly thoughtful it was, and yet no one appears to have acted on it very much. Even the United States suffered this year in Katrina and Harvey and Irma more than necessary by ignoring good counsel. As far as the danger to farms and rural areas, the document admits that populations in cities are easier to service, and that better planning and design of urban areas could make many cities much more efficient. But I see no danger to the rural areas and farms pointed out in the document: As a matter of priority, health service coverage should be achieved for population groups in greatest need, particularly those living in rural areas. (page 33) The document is very friendly to farms and calls for assistance to help farms become more productive and less wasteful. World food demand projections indicate an increase of 50 per cent by the year 2000 which will more than double again by 2050. Conservative estimates put pre-harvest and post-harvest losses caused by pests between 25 and 50 per cent. Pests affecting animal health also cause heavy losses and in many areas prevent livestock development. Chemical control of agricultural pests has dominated the scene, but its overuse has adverse effects on farm budgets, human health and the environment, as well as on international trade. New pest problems continue to develop. (page 141) If any of the points I mentioned fall on the same page numbers matching your document, then we most likely have the same document from June 1992. I finished the whole document and I again looked at all the "pictures." There were none at all. Please double-check that you are not basing your beliefs on one of the many conspiracy hoaxes about this document.
  9. Psychopath Test

    Uh oh! He's got a list!
  10. You didn't confirm if it's even the same document. The one I am reading is searchable and I read about 50 pages of the areas that would have been relevant. I searched on "bunker" "Colorado" "CO" "bunkers" "California" "CA" "population" "farm" "farms" and about 30 other words that might have been relevant. I also saw all the "pictures." I'm thinking you were not looking in the same document. Perhaps you could tell me what link you used to find the document you were reading. Just noticed you added the length of the document. Mine also has 351 pages. Let me know if you were able to find any of the points you said were there.
  11. How do you defend 1914 after reading Luke 21:8?

    There is nothing wrong with the single idea that the due time is near. Even if it is 1,000 years in the future, it is nearer now than when we first became believers. The book of Revelation appears intended to bring that day "close in mind." It makes it easier to imagine by giving us imagery and symbols that make us desirous of getting through the "pangs of distress" as @John Houston mentioned, and finally reaching the "new heavens and new earth" of Revelation 21 and 22. Revelation itself mentions that the "due time is near." (Revelation 1:1-3) 1 A revelation by Jesus Christ, which God gave him, to show his slaves the things that must shortly take place. And he sent forth his angel and presented [it] in signs through him to his slave John, 2 who bore witness to the word God gave and to the witness Jesus Christ gave, even to all the things he saw. 3 Happy is he who reads aloud and those who hear the words of this prophecy, and who observe the things written in it; for the appointed time is near. Peter provides a good commentary that fits both Revelation and Jesus' revelation in Matthew 24 and Luke 21. Peter gives us a practical way to view these revelations about Christ's parousia. (1 Peter 4:7-10) 7 But the end of all things has drawn close. Therefore, be sound in mind, and be vigilant with a view to prayers. 8 Above all things, have intense love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins. 9 Be hospitable to one another without grumbling. 10 To the extent that each one has received a gift, use it in ministering to one another as fine stewards of God’s undeserved kindness that is expressed in various ways. (2 Peter 3:11-13) 11 Since all these things are to be dissolved in this way, consider what sort of people you ought to be in holy acts of conduct and deeds of godly devotion, 12 as you await and keep close in mind the presence of the day of Jehovah, through which the heavens will be destroyed in flames and the elements will melt in the intense heat! 13 But there are new heavens and a new earth that we are awaiting according to his promise, and in these righteousness is to dwell. 2 Peter 1 pointed out that Christ's parousia could be 1,000 years off, or even on the order of 1,000's of years off. People would even be ridiculing Christians for the fact that things are still going on as they always were, so that it was obvious that the parousia had not yet begun. They were already doing that when the letters of 2 Peter and Jude were being written. People were still doing that in the year 1000 C.E. and 2000 C.E, and although it gets harder to see how things could go one, Jehovah might even allow things to go on to 3000 C.E. But this does not mean that the end is not "near" or "close." Then end of all things, the day of the Lord, could arrive tonight at 6:30 p.m. But for all of us , it is as near as the end of our own lifetime, after which our very next thought or breath would be in the "new heavens and new earth." No matter what, that's how Christians should live their lives.
  12. Nothing of the sort is in there. I have the 350-page document I got here:
      Hello guest!
    What is the link to the document you are talking about? If it's the same one, why does it say nothing about Colorado, California or Washington D.C.? I know that a lot of fundamentalist religions (including the Tea Party) are quick to make a conspiracy theory about anything that comes from the United Nations. (Many Witnesses have done this for years, too.) There will always be the danger of government over-reach and mismanagement of these ideas, but as far as the ideas themselves, they are excellent. I don't think they go far enough.
  13. I think the answer to that question is mostly YES! We are intelligent enough not to fall for his tricks. But that doesn't mean we won't fall for them, because Satan's biggest trick doesn't appeal to our intelligence but to our desires. (2 Corinthians 2:11) 11 so that we may not be overreached by Satan, for we are not ignorant of his designs. By the way, the Bible never, ever, says that demons can possess things that might therefore become dangerous to us. There is never a warning against owning things that might have been previously owned or influenced by demons or spirit mediums. Yet, on such matters, the Bible is all we need to be fully equipped, which also means that the Bible has told us all we need to know about being fully equipped, putting on the complete suit of armor, to fight the Devil. Instead of ever mentioning objects like Ouija boards, or amulets, or even false idols, we are told that these things (idols) are nothing. Instead the counsel we get is all about watching our desires: (James 1:14, 15) 14 But each one is tried by being drawn out and enticed by his own desire. 15 Then the desire, when it has become fertile, gives birth to sin; in turn sin, when it has been carried out, brings forth death. (James 1:27) 27 The form of worship that is clean and undefiled from the standpoint of our God and Father is this: to look after orphans and widows in their tribulation, and to keep oneself without spot from the world. (James 4:1-8) 4 What is the source of the wars and fights among you? Do they not originate from your fleshly desires that carry on a conflict within you? 2 You desire, and yet you do not have. You go on murdering and coveting, and yet you are not able to obtain. You go on fighting and waging war. You do not have because of your not asking. 3 When you do ask, you do not receive because you are asking for a wrong purpose, so that you may spend it on your fleshly desires. 4 Adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever, therefore, wants to be a friend of the world is making himself an enemy of God. 5 Or do you think that for no reason the scripture says: “The spirit that has taken up residence within us keeps enviously longing”? 6 However, the undeserved kindness that He gives is greater. So it says: “God opposes the haughty ones, but he gives undeserved kindness to the humble ones.” 7 Therefore, subject yourselves to God; but oppose the Devil, and he will flee from you. 8 Draw close to God, and he will draw close to you.. . .
  14. And just to help you keep @Anna's interest, she should know that Joseph Smith of Mormon fame also had his start in the Burned-over district. (In the same time period when Second Adventists began rescorching the region.)
  15. Agenda 21

      Hello guest!
    I picked up a 350 page document from here. Nothing about bunkers in CO or DC. There has been talk about the over-reach of laws for sustainable development and renewable resources for years. The far right and Tea Party for example made a lot out of the conspiracies that cropped up regarding what this would mean for the United States. Looks like all that conspiracy is not worth much. Typical fear-mongering. A lot of fundamentalist religions (including the Tea Party) make a conspiracy out of things that come from the UN. So it's to be expected. I have seen some areas to complain about, but not because they go too far, but because they don't go far enough.