THE SEVEN LETTERS TO THE SEVEN CONGREGATIONS
January 21, 2012
LETTER NO. 7 - THE CONSEQUENCES THAT HAVE RESULTED
FROM THE FAILURE TO RECOGNIZE ALL THE ANOINTED
“For the Sovereign Lord Jehovah will not do a thing unless he has revealed his confidential matters to his servants to prophets.”
– Amos 3:7
Thus, we are never in the dark as to Jehovah’s will, His word, or His ways. He provides advance warning as an act of loving kindness. So then, whenever his words are not heeded, He can rightly exact consequences. So also in the matter of His anointed sons.
The failure to recognize these sons has earned Jehovah’s anger, not due to any special merit on the part of the anointed, but because it is a disrespect to Jehovah. The anointed are a significant part of His purpose to sanctify His name, to vindicate His sovereignty and to reconcile mankind to Himself.
One such consequence is described by Jesus himself at Matthew 25:31-46 where he discussed the separating and judging of the sheep and the goat. He showed unquestionably that they are judged based on how they treated all of Christ’s brothers, from the greatest ones to the least ones. This standard applies to everyone. All have a responsibility to “do good” to Christ’s brothers.
This places a heavy responsibility on those who have taken the lead in feeding the sheep, the Organization and the Governing Body. If, in following their lead, certain sheep “imagining they have rendered a sacred service to God’ (John 16:2), challenge and persecute the least ones, they are in danger of departing into everlasting cutting off. And if the Governing Body, as members of the “Watchman Class,” fails to warn them of their course, they will lose their lives due to their own error, but Jehovah will ask back their blood from the hands of these leading ones. (Ezekiel 3:18)
There is, however, a greater disrespect that has resulted from failing to recognize all of Christ’s brothers. By continuing to hinder the development of the younger anointed, they have failed to train such men to carry on the work. As a result, they have misled themselves into believing that they must use the “Ishmaelites” to handle the priestly duties of teaching and guiding Jehovah’s people.
But consider the following scriptures:
“And you should appoint Aaron and his sons, and they must take care of the priesthood; and any stranger coming near should be put to death.”
– Numbers 3:10
“Accordingly Eleazar the priest took the copper fire holders, which those who had been burned up had presented, and they proceeded to beat them out into an overlaying for the alter, as a memorial for the sons of Israel, to the end that no strange man who is not of the offspring of Aaron should come near to make incense smoke before Jehovah, and no one might become like Korah and his assembly, just as Jehovah had spoken to him by means of Moses.”
– Numbers 16:39-40
“And you and your sons with you should safeguard your priesthood as regards every concern of the altar and as regards what is inside the curtain; and you men must render service. As a service of gift I shall give your priesthood and the stranger drawing near should be put to death.”
– Numbers 18:7
“However, as soon as he was strong, his heart became haughty even to the point of causing ruin, so that he acted unfaithfully against Jehovah his God and came into the temple of Jehovah to burn incense upon the altar of incense. Immediately Azariah the priest and with him priests of Jehovah, eighty valiant men, came in after him. Then they stood up against Uzziah the king and said to him: ‘It is not your business, O Uzziah, to burn incense to Jehovah, but it is the business of the priests the sons of Aaron, the ones sanctified, to burn incense. Go out from the sanctuary; for you have acted unfaithfully, and it is not for any glory to you on the part of Jehovah God.’”
– 2 Chronicles 26:16-18
“These were the ones that looked for their register to establish their genealogy publicly, and they did not find themselves, so that they were barred as polluted from the priesthood.”
– Ezra 2:62
“These are were the ones that looked for their register to establish their genealogy publicly, and it was not found, so that they were barred as polluted from the priesthood.”
– Nehemiah 7:64
Placing the unauthorized Ishmaelites in the role of priests defiles the entire Organization. Notice what happened to ancient Bethel, as recorded in the Insight Book, Volume 1, page 296, when it followed a similar course:
“As a major city of the northern kingdom under Jeroboam, Bethel, once prominent as a place of revelation by the true God, now became renowned as a center of false worship. At Bethel . . . , Jeroboam set up the golden calves in his effort to dissuade the people of the realm from going to the temple at Jerusalem. With its own religious house and altar, a specially invented festival time, and priests selected from among the non-Levitical tribes, Bethel became a symbol of rank apostasy from true worship.
“Jehovah did not delay in expressing his disapproval through a ‘man of the true God’ sent to Bethel to pronounce judgment against the altar used in connection with calf worship.
“The prophet Amos spoke in a similar vein, showing that, no matter how frequent the sacrifices offered by the people at Bethel’s altars, their pious pilgrimages to that place only constituted the commission of transgression, and warning that Jehovah’s burning anger would blaze against them inextinguishably. Angered at this prophesying done by Amos right in Bethel, the apostate priest Amaziah accused Amos of seditious talk and ordered him to ‘go back to Judah where he came from’ and there do his prophesying. ‘But at Bethel you must no longer do any further prophesying, for it is the sanctuary of a king and it is the house of a kingdom.’”
It is sad to note that even with all the warnings sent to ancient Bethel:
“Bethel continued as an idolatrous sanctuary until the fall of the northern kingdom to Assyria in 740 B.C.E. Thus Jeremiah, over a century later, could refer to it as a warning example to those trusting in false gods to their eventual shame.”
Please note in this reading that the apostasy started with the establishment of a priesthood made up of non-Levitical priests for the purpose of turning attention away from the true temple, which today is represented by the anointed congregation worldwide. The calf worship can be understood when we consider Jehovah’s words to Isaiah:
“I am Jehovah. That is my name; and to no one else shall I give my own glory, neither my praise to graven images.”
– Isaiah 42:8
Jehovah did not share his glory. He tolerated no rivalry and insisted on exclusive devotion. (Numbers 25:11) Bringing in alongside Jehovah the reverence of any other thing constituted idolatry. “Jehov ah alone must be put on high” (Isaiah 2:11, 17), no matter whether it is a creation, an idea, a human agency or an organization. Let the one with an ear hear what the spirit says to the congregation.
The Organization has thus far failed to learn from the things that went befalling ancient Bethel and, as a result, appears to be incurring Jehovah’s disapproval today. Polluting His priesthood and dishonoring Jehovah’s anointed will compel Jehovah to discipline His people as He has done many times in the past. His modern-day people will not escape Jehovah’s displeasure any more than the ancient nation of fleshly Israel escaped. Jehovah is not one to be mocked. “For whatever a man is sowing, this he will also reap.” (Galatians 6:7)
Here is where the faith of the holy ones comes in. Like Azariah, the faithful anointed remnant can stand firm against this error. We can encourage the Organization to repent and find the lost and rejected Sons, to leave open the door to the Kingdom, to accept the bounty of wisdom of the growing anointed late workers, and thereby save themselves, and the entire Organization, from sharing in the calamity.
“Keep awake, then, all the time making supplication that you may succeed in escaping all these things that are destined to occur and in standing before the Son of man.”
– Luke 21:36
In this series of letters, we showed that Jehovah is continuing to call His faithful anointed sons and building up His spiritual house. We showed that no man has the right to prevent anyone from entering into the Kingdom of the Heavens. And we showed that the failure of the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society to unreservedly welcome recently called ones will meet with the Father’s certain displeasure.
However, any failure on the part of the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society must be placed squarely on the shoulders of the anointed sons. And not only those in Bethel, but all anointed sons throughout the world. They are all ambassadors substituting for Christ charged with the obligation of caring for congregation, teaching and exemplifying love, tolerance and forgiveness, and ‘begging’ that all become reconciled to God. (2 Corinthians 5:20)
Brothers, know this! Even when those taking the lead in Bethel are slow to act, the anointed in the congregations must remain faithful to the Spirit’s leading at all times, knowing that it is impossible to out run Jehovah and his Chariot.
While it is Jehovah and his Christ who are building up the Christian congregation from their heavenly vantage points, here on earth, that weighty responsibility has been placed on the shoulders of the anointed sons of the Kingdom!
So we ask: Are you carrying your load? Are you looking for the lost sheep and building up the faith of those whose hope has not been made sure?
The next series of articles entitled "The Royal Priesthood and the Holy Nation" is designed to trace the development of your role and embolden you to reach out to your brothers in the faith.
We welcome your questions and comments.