The Kingdom – 101
"The Kingdom of God comes not with observation." Luke 17:20
The Davidian brethren after the death of Brother Houteff unfortunately developed a politically correct oppressed understanding of just what constitutes "The Kingdom". Let us look at a brief review here. For a complete understanding, read the Branch Letters, The Branch Message - BLR, and The Seven Letters to DSDA, in the Original Publications section.
That, "The Kingdom" is "plant like", it begins small, "as a mustard seed", 2 TG 45:3.
That, "The Kingdom" is restored by the Elijah [Elijah Message, in two phases, exactly according to the John the Baptist and Yahshua (Jesus) typology – back to back], who would of necessity must be alive today. 2 TG 7:11. [Elijah the Tishbite typology relating to The Branch Message; Elijah-John the Baptist typology belongs to Brother Houteff. He applied this type to himself. See 1TG36:4 par.1; GCS 40,41].
By parity of reasoning, if the movement today, called the Davidian Movement, still under Brother Houteff, is DEAD [see Brother Houteff's definition in 1 TG 51], then how can a movement today call itself the Elijah Message that will restore The Kingdom? 2TG7:11. Brother Roden also died, in 1978, but his wife was recognized by Ben Roden himself as co-president, co-signatory in the Branch Field Letters one year before he died. See Section One of the Original Publications, Branch Field Letters in 1978. Original images of the signed Field Letters will soon be available in the History Archives Section on the homepage. How does a "president" or "co-president" of an association prove he, or she, is a Divinely appointed and anointed president? Answer: He or she will have a message that bears the Divine Credentials. See Section 5 of the Branch Message Original Publications to see for yourself the message that Sister Roden began to teach just before Brother Roden's passing, for one year, and for many years after. Her publications are also extensive. Please consider the Spirit of Prophecy injunction relating to Sister Roden's message - "A revival and a reformation must take place, under the ministration of the Holy Spirit …." 1SM128. This was the message that Sister Roden brought. No "revival and reformation" can begin without first the knowledge, and acceptance of that knowledge, of the Person and the Office of the Holy Spirit, just as Sister White clearly announced in the 1901 GCB and another statement, quoted in "Our History" on the homepage under 1977.
That, "The Kingdom" is preceded by "a Valley of Achor" experience (2TG21:12), which is a historical fact in the Davidian Message and Movement from 1959-1962, when Florence Houteff and her Executive Council literally "STOLE" the tithe at New Mt. Carmel, dissolving the Davidian elderly retirement program for housing set up by Brother Houteff, which Ben Roden wrote extensively about in the Branch Message. The Hand of Providence made sure the lesson of the type and history was clear so that no Davidian could miss it. In 1962, upon the final dissolution of the Executive Council, Florence Houteff immediately thereafter married a man name "Eakin". Not only do we have a corresponding providential name (Eakin) in the fulfillment, but also the situation fits the type, per the Joshua, the son of Nun, in the Valley of Achor, a "Joshua, to lead us into the Kingdom", per the E.G. White statement.
That, according to Davidian Fundamental Beliefs, "The Kingdom" comes to complete fruition AFTER the Firstfruits "have their names changed" "on their way home", not after they arrive in the Kingdom, that is, in the development of the providential and prophetic THIRD PHASE of the Advent Movement, The Branch, as it "swells" into a Loud Cry. Not an overnight event. 2 TG 10:30.
That, "The Kingdom" "sprouts from the ground up", "in the day that THIS family TREE is completed" (Isaiah 11:1) in a message and a movement, in three sections, "Jesse (The Stem-SDA), David (The Rod –DSDA) and Christ (The Branch – BDSDA)". 1TG31:3,5. (parenthesis added/ term equivalents).
That, "The Kingdom" "here again (is) shown to start with something small, but that little thing is to be like yeast in a loaf of bread (a new truth or a new message). What could the leaven be but an unpopular message borne by some insignificant one (first Brother Houteff and second Brother Roden, "the man who is my fellow" Zech. 13:7) and put into the Church, the loaf." That "The Kingdom" starts small, "very insignificant, contrary to all human expectation." And, according to Brother Houteff's comments, "The Kingdom" comes after "THREE MEASURES of meal" (truth) are put into the loaf, the church. Meaning, three inspired messages, The Stem, The Rod, and The Branch, which bring about The Kingdom. 2 TG 11:6. (parenthesis added). No Ensign, No Kingdom. Without the Ensign, or the Ensign Message, there can be no Kingdom.
In the quote above, the "loaf" of bread would equate to the Advent Message and Movement beginning in 1844, and the "yeast" would equate to progressive truth, new light, to cause the Advent Movement Message, and people, to grow and RISE in knowledge. In the Davidian organizations of today, Davidian teachers only teach their students to count with only two fingers, the messages given by Sister White #1, and Brother Houteff #2. We cannot arrive at The Kingdom until we can count to THREE. THREE MEASURES OF TRUTH! - not two. Again, No Family Tree, No Ensign, No Kingdom. We must account for THREE present truth messages, three sections of the Advent Message, that precede and merge into the Kingdom. The Kingdom must start small, not overnight. Three measures of meal can ONLY relate to prophetic truth, spiritual food, NOT the location of a headquarters, particularly after Brother Houteff's passing. Grain "MEAL", as represented in Matthew 13:33, can only refer to spiritual food, representing prophetic truth. We need no lengthy complicated reasoning or contortion of the symbols to arrive at this conclusion.
"We know the Branch to be Christ. A branch is a part of a tree, and in this instance, the tree represents the kingdom of David which is to come from the stem of Jesse (SDA). In that day the Branch shall be beautiful and glorious, and through the beauty and glory of the Branch – Christ (crucified afresh) – the whole kingdom is also to be beautiful and glorious, and "the fruit of the earth shall be excellent and comely for them that are escaped of <st1:country-region>Israel</st1:country-region>." ….Verse 3 – "And it shall come to pass, that he that is left in Zion (after the Psalm 80 judgment on The Branch Movement 1993) and he that remaineth in Jerusalem (Spiritual Jerusalem, New Mt. Carmel) … Some are to be taken away from (spiritual) Zion and Jerusalem, and all who are left are holy (sealed)…" 12SC:6,7:15 (parenthesis added).
The Kingdom, starts small – in a message and movement. My brethren, have you kept pace with the light and the unrolling of the scroll? If a Davidian tells you that The Ensign and the Family Tree are completed in "The Kingdom", … right they are! But again, we must go back and carefully define what constitutes "The Kingdom". To think or believe that "the "revival and reformation" under The Branch takes place in "The Kingdom", … right again! But again, we must carefully define what is "The Kingdom" and WHEN does it start. The Kingdom begins without observation (Luke
)! We must be "close reasoners and logical thinkers." Brother Houteff was very clear on this point and there is no excuse for resisting the "very present truth" for today.
Why, Davidian Brethren, do we need any "revival and reformation" when we are in the Kingdom of Glory, in Israel, after the Daniel 12:2 resurrection, after Brother Houteff is with us again with all those who died in the faith of the Third Angel's Message? By then, have not all the saints been carefully examined and sealed? No Davidian or Branch-Davidian will need "revival and reformation" in "The Kingdom" [per the repressed Davidian definition] at that time, when they have been already sealed with THREE SEALS (Rev. 3:12) and fully empowered after the second Pentecost outpouring of the Holy Spirit!
Without a TRIPLE SEAL message, you will not have the qualifications to go to the New Jerusalem, The Kingdom, when "the angel says, 'all aboard'".
Despise not the day of small beginnings. Zechariah 4:10.
Davidian brethren, I prayerfully submit for your thinking, that the Kingdom is already here! It has been here since 1955 when the Third Section of the Advent Movement began to grow, small and insignificant, when the "Ensign" was completed 1955-1960. To teach and believe, as most Davidians do today, that "the chariot" comes to take you to the Promised Land, when He "smites the seven streams to make us go over on dry shod", before the "Family Tree" is complete, or that the Lord will supernaturally execute Ezekiel Nine on the Advent Movement and then have the "investigative phase" after the "execution phase", is not only the height of being un-just (2SR220), but is, in verity, abhorrent to the sure Word of Prophecy. No amount of evidential reasoning or justification can condone such a position. It all comes back to the vindication of Divine Character. What kind of message are Davidian's portraying today to vindicate the Character of The Father? "Is mortal man more just than the Creator?" The Book of Job 4:17.
The Judgment for the Living must start with an "investigative phase", then a "judicial phase", then an "executive phase (Eze. 9). Not in reverse order as the Davidians first believed under Florence Houteff. Please consider, that when Ben Roden began to write and proclaim The Branch Message to the Davidians at Old Mt. Carmel and the newly established New Mt. Carmel, he was announcing that the Judgment for the Living had arrived and was then in progress, beginning with the typology of the FIG TREE, Matthew 21:19, (the Davidian Movement) in the investigative phase, and in a special sense for Davidians as the type of Chirst, in a message and movement, passing judgment on the fig tree, because they, the Davidians were not prepared when the antitypical Christ (Message) came! Davidians failed to provide "fruit", in accepting a new message. Brother Houteff clearly stated in 12SC1:6 that "Christ Himself is also a type."
Since when is the Divine pattern less "just" than the earthly system of law? Three times in the Book of Job we are asked, "is mortal man more just than Eloah (God)?" Well, is he?
Please consider this present truth paradox that most Davidians cannot see because they have been taught by the old brethren, there is "no new light and no new prophets until the Kingdom" (2TG24:20-21), such is the condition of Davidian-Laodiceanism. You will not find one statement in The Rod to support such a restricted view. Or, I will give you two statements for every statement any Davidian thinks supports that "no more light until the Kingdom" theory, then we will measure the "weight of evidence."
Brother Houteff clearly stated in the Jezreel Letters (L4p. 18,19) and elsewhere, that the Judgment for the Living had NOT commenced in his lifetime. Such an announcement must be clear, direct and outright, as Brother Roden wrote and taught beginning in 1955. Although Davidians today are universally taught that Brother Houteff's Message constituted "the Eleventh Hour Message", upon closer examination and careful reasoning, we can see that Brother Houteff's Message was the "Pre-Eleventh Hour Extra" (Tract #1 title), that, although Brother Houteff's Message "would merge into" (1TG8:24) the "11th Hour Message (The Branch), yes, he, Brother Houteff, could be said to be part of the 11th Hour Message, but not the 11th Hour Message itself as a whole, just as John the Baptist was part of Christ's Message and Movement, in a restricted sense, in the announcement thereof. Not only did Brother Houteff use the word "restricted" in connection to the representation of his message as the 11th Hour Message, "the additional message", but he used the words "very restricted" WHR39.
The "harvest" begins the "Eleventh Hour", that "the Eleventh Hour Movement must triumph, for being the last, the one to garner in the harvest,…" (1AB68). Yet, he clearly tells us that "we have come almost to the time of the harvest (Rev. 18:1), and that we have been given the opportunity to make ready for it. Shall we not be glad that we are not left in darkness, and that we are now plainly shown that these are the closing hours of the pre-harvest period, that the harvest will soon begin?" (1TG21:19). The "harvest" was to begin in 1955. (parenthesis added from another Rod quote).
As plainly as I can say it, "the Harvest" did not begin in Brother Houteff's day, therefore, the 11th Hour Message did not begin in Brother Houteff's day. The "Harvest" begins with Ezekiel 9, yes, but wait! brother, sister Davidian, as I show in various correlating statements below, Ezekiel 9 must begin with an INVESTIGATIVE phase, which also means that "the Harvest" has begun. But Davidians in general have great difficulty in understanding that there is a big difference between the concept and terminology of "investigative", or book work, versus "executive", or a literal supernatural event. This is because the Davidian leaders since Brother Houteff died have failed to receive the message that initiated the "Investigative- Judgment for the Living" and attempted to confuse the concepts and reality of the Judgment for the Living.
Carefully consider the statement in WHR 34:2, where Brother Houteff presents a different aspect of what constitutes the 11th Hour Message, in contradistinction of the message he brought, that,
"With the completed judgment-message during the eleventh hour, the angels are to separate the people of God from the people of the world." Remember, this happens in the church first! The main point here to see, that Brother Houteff did not bring a "completed" "eleventh hour message". And please remember, we have already touched upon a broader definition of "the Kingdom", according to The Rod.
Thus, hopefully, each honest Davidian can begin to apprehend the otherwise puzzling statement where, in The White House Recruiter, page 39, he says, "All who have perused these pages to this point, have surely become aware of the fact that even this very restricted representation of the "additional message" --- that of the Judgment of the Living – gives, in itself tremendous "power and force" to the Three Angel's Message (Early Writings 277). Amen. Why is this? Because Brother Houteff's Message was not "the Eleventh-Hour Message, but only the "Pre-Eleventh Hour" Message, the announcement for the Judgment of the Living, just at the Judgment for the Dead Message in 1844 had its announcement message and prophet in William Miller!
Question: How can a message come before it is supposed to arrive, on the prophetic parabolic clock of Matthew 20? How can the clock strike ELEVEN, before it is ELEVEN? Answer: It cannot. It cannot be!
What this means to any close reasoner and logical thinker? There is a –
1. Pre-Eleventh Hour Message, represented by the John the Baptist typology.
Then, there is -
2. An Eleventh Hour Message, represented by the Messiah-Christ typology, the Immanuel.
Brother Houteff makes quite a case for the truthfulness of this concept of the "Judgment" as a "legal" event, if there is no announcement. See 2SR220. Brother Roden explains this concept in great detail in the Seven Letters to Florence Houteff and in many places in The Branch Letters in Section 4 of the Original Publications. In other words, Brother Houteff's Message was still under the time frame of The Judgment of the Dead, but he was announcing the Judgment of the Living, just as William Miller announced the approaching Judgment message of his day.
There should be no confusion concerning the true nature and time of the "Eleventh-hour Message and Movement". Somehow, it seems every Davidian teacher gets above the simplicity of the truth of the Judgment and the Harvest, as Brother Houteff's message taught. Brother Houteff clearly taught, in a handful of statements, what would constitute the "Eleventh-hour Movement". Some brethren are made to be tripped-up on the concept of "the LAST", as Brother Houteff states in more than one place, particularly, 1AB67. But if you apply this to The Rod Message, then an insurmountable paradox or outright contradiction of concepts and Rod statements arise. We know that the "Judgment" and the "Harvest", synonymous terms as defined by The Rod, particularly in the Jezreel Letters, that such events did not transpire in the lifetime and ministry of Brother Houteff. By this realization we can understand that The Rod Message itself was a TWO phased message, the first phase, the announcement, and the second phase, the fulfillment, The Branch. And remember, it is impossible that a fair and "JUST" judgment begin with any other than an "investigative phase" (2SR220). No "judgment" begins with an "executive" phase, such as the Ezekiel 9 slaughter. Put another way, every Davidian should know that an "investigative phase" begins with a MESSAGE, not a slaughter.
1. According to The Gospel, The Rod and type, "a harvest" begins with a gathering out of the precious grain of the harvest, to be placed in "the Barn", the Kingdom. And how does the Kingdom start? Correct, …. "small", "without observation!"
2. Thereafter, the chaff is gathered [by angels not men] into bundles and burned, or executed and destroyed.
3. Brother Houteff told us that we have "almost come to the time of harvest,…that we are now plainly shown that these are the closing hours (in his day) of the pre- harvest period, that the harvest will soon begin?" 1TG
4. That the "Eleventh-hour Movement,… being the last" is "the one to garner in the harvest". 1AB68.
5. That "the Harvest" is the "Investigative Judgment of the Living", again, synonymous terms, but Brother Houteff had no light as to when it would begin. 1AB94, 95.
All Davidian teachers of today really complicate this topic, various statements, attempting to show that Brother Houteff will be resurrected and continue the message, in a second phase. But upon careful examination, we find no type for such a theory. It is a rather easy topic to understand if one can navigate The Rod with a true inspired view, from the Golden Bowl, to see the simplicity and beauty of the topic of the Judgment and the Harvest.
There are numerous other statements, but I decline in this brief summary to belabor the issue. If any Davidian teacher tells you that Brother Houteff's Message was Revelation 18:1, when he clearly states his message is the "repeat of the First Angel's Message" (WHR 37), then we must ask "why did Brother Houteff die?" Where is the type for that, or where is the type for a "John the Baptist" (Elijah), to return to take up a pre-eminent role in the Eleventh Hour Message, or trans-morph into the Christ (Elijah) type?
There are clear and simple answers to these questions. If any Davidian thinks or teaches that Brother Houteff's Message was the final message, Revelation 18:1, then, the delineation of the messages addressed in 1SR32:2 should clear up the confusion. Brother Houteff was not the last message. The Rod was not, or ever intended to be, the Revelation 18 Angel Message. Brother Houteff announced the last message, that "one movement would merge into a greater one."
Brother Roden's Message came on the scene to show Davidians how to navigate The Rod, particularly how to navigate the types, to answer these important questions. For that matter, no Message or Movement stands or falls on the life and ministry of one prophet. This certainly applies to Brother Roden as well. But what a Message and Movement DOES stand upon, and must stand upon, is the continuity of the prophetic office. And as we all know, that office does change, upon Heaven's command! It has, in The Rod Movement, and it has in The Branch Movement (Zechariah 13:7). We certainly could apply a "resurrection" typology to Brother Roden in The Branch Message, since The Branch is Christ. But I will not apply that type, because The Branch Message does not stand or fall upon the person and ministry of Benjamin Roden. The message and movement of today stands upon the continuity of the prophetic gift in the church, The Branch Messianic Assembly which STANDS today at New Mt. Carmel Center, Waco, Texas. Based upon the 1 Symbolic Code 8:2 statement, we can see the fulfillment in a modern type, the cleansing of the Land, when "a Branch shall stand", which is exactly what took place in The Branch Movement, at New Mt. Carmel Center from April 1993 to April 2006, in the executive phase of the Judgment for the Living. A new chapter has begun.
I would be pleased to show any Davidian how this "announcement" message concept works directly on the Matthew 20 Study Chart in relation to the 11th Hour Message.
Some of Brother Houteff's statements concerning the Judgment of the Living, were written with the best light he was given at the time, as a general concept or principle of the topic, although many Davidians regard some statements as authoritative in detail when it is only a general overview at best. This same consideration can also be shown many times in the writings of the Spirit of Prophecy, particularly in The Great Controversy, page 656, where Sister White applies the fulfillment of Ezekiel 9 at the very end of time, clearly to what mainstream SDAs believe, the time the SDA Church is judged and separated, during the Seven Last Plagues. Well, in that application, Sister White was not exactly clear or accurate in the time application of Ezekiel 9, or, she used such a 'broad brush' to depict the prophetic scene, that, unfortunately it would be easy to misinterpret the true time of the Divine Judgment on the Advent Movement Church, which is after the sealing of the Firstfruits but before the final deliverance and full empowerment of the 144,000.
If there is any application to Ezekiel 9 to mainstream Christianity (spiritual Babylon), it certainly is not evident in the Ezekiel prophecy itself, certainly not in chapter 9. As all Davidians know, we base our faith and convictions on "weight of evidence", not perfect knowledge. On some events in the stream of prophecy, some details the messenger may depict, can be to broadly applied to be fully accurate. No messenger is infallible. Both Sister White and Brother Houteff understood this fallibility weakness (1SM 37,63). She further underscored this principle in 1SM 20, where she states, "There is not always perfect order or apparent unity in the Scriptures. …Everything that is human is imperfect." If this is so with the Scriptures, how much more so with a few comments of future events in the writings of the Spirit of Prophecy. There is no prophetic inconsistency here. The answer to this dilemma, … is "weight of evidence."
Many Davidians have had to deal with such statements to explain to Laodicea that the Ezekiel 9 judgment is for spiritual modern <st1:country-region>Israel</st1:country-region> – the Advent Movement. When I was formally disfellowshipped from the mother church in September of 1978, myself and two others, for associating with Davidians, and accepting the message, I was asked to stand before the church board and give an answer for the above statement in question, and other questions, in a formal church board meeting. I gave the usual "extensive" not "universal" argument portrayed in the future destruction scene comments of GC656, attached to Ezekiel 9. Sister White was certainly not given the details of the judgment message as Brother Houteff was given. Nor was Brother Houteff given the details of future events, Harvest Law and Gospel Order, relating to the "Wavesheaf" section, the first of the Firstfruits, that Brother Roden was given.