Things You Might Not Know About Charles T. Russell
This is in further reply to:
Under the subheading of “Some Strange Teachings of C. T. Russell” is listed the teaching of “pyramidology.” The statement is made that certain calculations based on the Great Pyramid were “integrated into the prophecies of Russell.”
Although Russell never used the word “pyramidology,” Russell did believe that the Great Pyramid corroborated the Bible. It has been said that truth is stranger than fiction; this, however, is because of limited perceptions of truth. Thus, unless one actually studies Biblical pyramidology, the idea of pyramidology may seem “strange,” just as many non-Christians believe that the idea of God sending a son to die for our sins is “strange,” if their minds have not been conditioned to accept this. Yet, the very fact that Jesus died for our sins is confirmed by the Great Pyramid.
Russell, of course, made no prophecies, thus the statement that calculations were “integrated into the prophecies of Russell,” is incorrect. Russell did present, however, a series of studies on Biblical time prophecies (most of Russell’s studies on time prophecies and chronology were based on earlier studies done by N. H. Barbour and some others), and he believed that the measurements of the passageways confirmed the chronology of the Bible. Russell, himself, however, spent little time and space, comparatively, on the study of the Great Pyramid. John and Morton Edgar, however, actually measured the passageways and wrote extensively on the Great Pyramid, its symbolism — both scientifically and Biblically — as well as the time features. They demonstrated in great detail how the time features of the Bible are corroborated by the Great Pyramid, as well as many other things about the Bible. Whether all their conclusions are correct or not, the evidence that the Great Pyramid was indeed constructed under God’s divine guidance is overwhelming, to say the least.
Let me say, however, that the word “pyramidology” was rarely used until after Charles Taze Russell died. It came more into use when Adam Rutherford named his books “Pyramidology.” His definition of pyramidology shows that the word came into being to distinguish the study of the Great Pyramid as related to the Bible from other studies. The word originally had nothing to do with heathen occultism, nor does such a study of the Great Pyramid have anything to do with heathen occultism, nor with “pyramid power,” etc.
For more information on the Great Pyramid, please visit:
On the webpage that has now been removed, the following had been stated:
Nelson H. Barbour (1824-1908, NY)–Millerite Adventist taught that the rapture would occur in April, 1878. Paired up with Russell 1876-1881. Influenced Russell by teaching an invisible return of Christ. Split over differences after failed prophecy of Christ’s return in 1844 and debate over Christ’s ransom.
This appears to be saying that Russell split with Barbour over an alleged “failed prophecy” of Christ’s return in 1844. It could be a typo, and possibly was meant to be 1874. Regardless, Russell was not even born in 1844, so I do not see how he could be having any differences with anyone concerning an alleged failed prophecy concerning Christ’s return in 1844.
If the 1874 was date meant, I believe both Russell and Barbour had agreed, at least until 1878, that Christ had already returned invisibly in 1874. Russell himself, before 1876, never held any expectations concerning either 1844 nor 1874, and thus certainly could not have made an “predictions” concerning either date. It was not until two years after 1874 that Russell accepted that Jesus had already returned in 1874. Russell died in 1916 still holding to his belief that Jesus had returned in 1874, thus, from Russell’s standpoint, there was no failure concerning that date.
Neither Russell nor Barbour, however, ever claimed to be making any prophecies. As far as I know, neither did William Miller claim that his conclusions were prophecies. Russell disclaimed be a prophet many times, but rather he claimed to be a student of prophecy. Thus there were no “failed prophecies”; the prophecies themselves are in the Bible, and regardless as to whether Russell’s conclusions concerning those prophecies proved either correct or incorrect, Russell believed that the Biblical prophecies would not fail.
Russell’s own words regarding his differences with Barbour may be found at:
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On the website:
The following is stated concerning Charles Taze Russell
Truth: “A truth presented by Satan himself is just as true as a truth stated by God. . . . Accept truth wherever you find it, no matter what it contradicts” (WT 7/1879, pp. 8-9).
This quotation is from Russell, and it does state a truth. If Satan states something that is true, it does not become a lie simply because he stated it. Nevertheless, Satan often presents a truth in such a way to persuade one to believe in a lie.
However, taking the quote out of context is evidently designed to lead one to believe that Russell was in some way in agreement with, in service of, the devil, occultism, or some form of witchcraft, etc. Let us look at the quote in context:
This question is one which every sincere Christian should ask and seek to answer. We should learn to love and value truth for its own sake; to respect and honor it by owning and acknowledging it wherever we find it and by whomsoever presented. A truth presented by Satan himself is just as true as a truth stated by God.
Perhaps no class of people are more apt to overlook this fact than the Christian. How often do they in controversy overlook and ignore truth presented by their opponents. This is particularly the case when arguing with an infidel. They feel at perfect liberty to dispute everything he says on religious subjects. This is not the correct principle. Many infidels are honest–as anxious to speak and believe the truth as are Christians–and if in converse with them we ignore truths which they may advance, we not only fail to convince them of our truths, but put an end to all hope of reaching them; for our failure to admit the evident truth which they advance begets in them contempt for the one who is not honest enough to admit one truth because he does not see how it can be reconciled to another. Accept truth wherever you find it, no matter what it contradicts, and rely for ability to afterwards harmonize it with others upon “The Spirit of truth, which shall guide you into all truth,” as Jesus promised.
Thus, it becomes obvious as to what Russell was saying. He is likening the infidels who are being used by Satan as though they were Satan; Jesus did something similar when he called the apostle Peter “Satan”. (Matthew 16:23; Mark 8:33) Peter, of course, was not literally Satan, but he was imitating Satan is speaking an untruth. Likewise, the infidels who reject the creative account of the Bible may present a lot of truths in what they say, although they may misrepresent those truths to promote what is not true.
Likewise, if Satan, or his demons speak a truth, it is still true regardless of their purposes for stating the truth. The implication of putting this quote on the site appears to be to imply that the opposite is actually the truth, thus, that absolutely everything Satan says is a lie, and that thus, Satan cannot speak one sentence without everything in that sentence being a lie. Such an idea, if extended to the demons over whom Satan is prince, then the demons lied when they called Jesus: “the son of God,” and “Son of the Most High.” (Matthew 8:29; Mark 3:11; Luke 1:32; 4:41; 8:48) Thus, if they cannot tell the truth at all, then we should believe that it is a lie to say that Jesus is the “Son of God,” or that Jesus is the “Son of the Most High.”
In Job 1:7, we read:
Yahweh said to Satan, “Where have you come from?” Then Satan answered Yahweh, and said, “From going back and forth in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.” — World English Bible translation.
Did Satan lie when he stated the above? Did he lie to Yahweh by saying that he had been going back and forth in the earth, etc.? I have no reason to think that he did so.
But didn’t Jesus say concerning Satan that “there is no truth in him?” — John 8:44, Word English.
Actually, the translators have worded Jesus’ words to have him say this. The more direct translation would be, in reference to “the truth” that Jesus had just spoken of: “the truth is not in him.” (John 8:44) I don’t think Jesus intended to say that Satan can never tell a truth, anymore than he meant that those Jewish leaders to whom he spoke could never tell a truth. However, most often when Satan tells us a truth, it is framed in a setting of a lie, as in Genesis 3:5. By such methods he misrepresents the truth that he states with a lie.
Another motive for quoting Russell as quoted on the site may have been to leave the impression that Russell believed that what Satan says is “the truth,” which is again far from Russell’s intent in his statement. Russell’s works attest of his view concerning Satan, that he was a liar, and the father of the lie, as Jesus said.
For more concerning Charles Taze Russell, see: