THE SHEPHERD’S ROD – VOLUME 1 TIMELY GREETINGS NO. 52
FIVE MEN SLAY AFTER ONE SETS A MARK
TEXT FOR PRAYER
Bringing New Truths
I shall read from "Christ's Object Lessons," page twenty, beginning with the second paragraph.
"In the earlier part of His ministry, Christ had spoken to the people in words so plain that all His hearers might have grasped truths which would make them wise unto salvation. But in many hearts the truth had taken no root, and it had been quickly caught away. 'Therefore speak I to them in parables,' He said; 'because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand.... Jesus desired to awaken inquiry. He sought to arouse the careless, and impress truth upon the heart...."
In Christ's day it was just as difficult to bring new truths to the people as
it is today. Jesus used every possible means to interest the people in the present
Truth of His day, but you know what little success He did have -
Timely Greetings, Vol. 1, No. 52 14
FIVE MEN SLAY AFTER ONE SETS A MARK
TEXT OF ADDRESS BY V.T. HOUTEFF,
MINISTER OF DAVIDIAN 7TH-
SABBATH, AUGUST 2, 1947
MT. CARMEL CENTER
The subject of our study this afternoon is found in the ninth chapter of Ezekiel.
We shall begin with-
Timely Greetings, Vol. 1, No. 52 15
were before the house."
Note that at the command of Lord, the angels in charge are to slay the sinners
in Jerusalem (in the church), not in the world. Only the abomination-
The day Ezekiel had this vision in Babylon, Jerusalem had already been in captivity and emptied of its people for years. See Ezekiel 1:1; 8:7. No such a purification or cleansing as here described ever took place in Ezekiel's day or in the annals of the church since his day. It is, therefore, certain that the prophecy is yet to be fulfilled.
Inspiration in our day, moreover, puts this foreseen cleansing still in the future and makes this explanation:
"The class who do not feel grieved over their own spiritual declension, nor mourn over the sins of others, will be left without the seal of God. The Lord commissions his messengers, the men with slaughtering weapons in their hands: 'Go ye after him through the city, and smite; let not your eye spare, neither have ye pity; slay utterly old and young, both maids and little children, and women; but come not near any man upon whom is the mark; and begin at my sanctuary. Then they began at the ancient men which were before the house.'
"Here we see that the church -
Timely Greetings, Vol. 1, No. 52 16
betrayed their trust." -
The enemies of God, you note, have taken possession of the churches, but soon the tables will be turned, and the servants of the Devil will be no more; they will fall and not be found.
The people, you note, are deceived by the ancient men who have betrayed their trust. You well know that the prophets, the apostles, Jesus Christ, and the reformers, were all in their times railed against and taunted as "Offshoots," but we thank God that the "offshoots" and the Truth, not the dead tops, triumphed.
"...They [the ancient men] had taken the position that we need not look for miracles
and the marked manifestation of God's power as in former days." -
Is not this now the position of the ancient men? Are they not now crying peace
and safety? Are they not now preaching that Ezekiel nine is not now to take place
and that it is not to take place in the church, that this message is a false alarm?
What does it take to awaken a dreaming sleeper? They are dreaming that-
"...Times have changed. These words strengthen their unbelief, and they say, The Lord will not do good, neither will he do evil." "God will not slay His people," "The church is His most precious object on earth," they say.
Of course the church is His most precious object on earth, and that is just exactly why He is to cleanse it, that is why He is to slay the wicked in the midst of her
Timely Greetings, Vol. 1, No. 52 17
and seal (preserve) the penitent so that He may have a church clean, "without spot,
wrinkle, or any such thing." -
"...Thus peace and safety is the cry from men who will never again lift up their
voice like a trumpet to show God's people their transgressions and the house of Jacob
their sins. These dumb dogs, that would not bark, are the ones who feel the just
vengeance of an offended God. Men, maidens, and little children, all perish together."
"Who are standing in the counsel of God at this time? Is it those who virtually excuse wrongs among the professed people of God, and who murmur in their hearts, if not openly, against those who would reprove sin? Is it those who take their stand against them, and sympathize with those who commit wrong? No, indeed! Unless they repent, and leave the work of Satan in oppressing those who have the burden of the work, and in holding up the hands of sinners in Zion, they will never receive the mark of God's sealing approval. They will fall in the general destruction of the wicked, represented by the work of the five men bearing slaughter weapons. Mark this point with care: Those who receive the pure mark of truth, wrought in them by the power of the Holy Ghost, represented by a mark by the man in linen, are those 'that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that be done' in the church. Their love for purity and the honor and glory of God is such, and they have so clear a view of the exceeding sinfulness of sin that they are represented as being in agony, even sighing and crying. Read the ninth chapter of Ezekiel." Then says the Spirit:
"But the general slaughter of all those who do not
Timely Greetings, Vol. 1, No. 52 18
thus see the wide contrast between sin and righteousness, and do not feel as those
do who stand in the counsel of God and receive the mark, is described in the order
to the five men with slaughter weapons: 'Go ye after him through the city, and smite;
let not your eye spare, neither have ye pity; slay utterly old and young, both maids,
and little children, and women; but come not near any man upon whom is the mark;
and begin at my sanctuary.'" -
Here are shown two classes in the church -
Timely Greetings, Vol. 1, No. 52 19
When is this separation of the wicked from among the righteous to take place? Jesus places it in the end of the world. Says He:
"Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into My barn. Again, the Kingdom of Heaven is like unto a net, that was cast into the sea, and gathered of every kind: which, when it was full, they drew to shore, and sat down, and gathered the good into vessels, but cast the bad away." Matt. 13:30, 47, 48.
As tares they are burned; as bad fish, they are cast out. This is the way in which
the Kingdom comes, says the Lord. And what is the harvest if not the Judgment for
the Living? -
"The true people of God," says Inspiration, "who have the spirit of the work of
the Lord, and the salvation of souls at heart, will ever view sin in its real, sinful
character. They will always be on the sides of faithful and plain dealing with sins
which easily beset the people of God. Especially in the closing work for the church,
in the sealing time of the One Hundred and Forty-
Now the subject of the 144,000 stands out brighter than ever before. Now you can clearly see that those
Timely Greetings, Vol. 1, No. 52 20
who escape the slaughter foreseen in Ezekiel nine, are the 144,000 the future servants
of God, the first fruits of the harvest, resulting from the cleansing of the sanctuary
(church), the work of the investigative judgment of the living. This work and this
Truth, therefore, are the most important for the day, and should whole-
Do you, Brother, Sister, actually comprehend, actually realize, the crisis as outlined here? Do you see the prediction that the sealing message is to be resisted by those who foster the abominations? Are you with them? I hope not. Is there then any question that if the brethren are left ignorant of this cleansing work that God is about to do among His people, I say, if they be left ignorant of it, will they not fall in the general destruction of the wicked, represented by the work of the five men bearing slaughter weapons?
Obviously all the sinners in the church will perish
Timely Greetings, Vol. 1, No. 52 21
in this slaughter of the wicked, be they men, women, or children. Parents who continue to serve the Devil will have their little ones with them in hell; and parents who break away from abominations will have their little ones with them in the Kingdom. Where do you stand? Are you with those who have the burden of this work, or are you against them? This you see is the decisive hour for you, for me.
"...Mark this point with care," counsels the Spirit of God. "Those who receive
the pure mark of truth, wrought in them by the power of the Holy Ghost, represented
by a mark by the man in linen, are those 'that sigh and that cry for all the abominations
that be done' in the church. Their love for purity and the honor and glory of God
is such, and they have so clear a view of the exceeding sinfulness of sin, that they
are represented as being in agony, even sighing and crying. Read the ninth chapter
of Ezekiel." -
Who are true Seventh-
Let me read again:
"In the time when his wrath shall go forth in judgments, these humble, devoted
followers of Christ will be distinguished from the rest of the world by their soul-
Timely Greetings, Vol. 1, No. 52 22
weeping, reproofs and warnings. While others try to throw a cloak over the existing
evil, and excuse the great wickedness everywhere prevalent, those who have a zeal
for God's honor and a love for souls, will not hold their peace to obtain favor of
any. Their righteous souls are vexed day by day with the unholy works and conversation
of the unrighteous. They are powerless to stop the rushing torrent of iniquity,
and hence they are filled with grief and alarm. They mourn before God to see religion
despised in the very homes of those who have had great light. They lament and afflict
their souls because pride, avarice, selfishness, and deception of almost every kind
are in the church. The Spirit of God, which prompts to reproof, is trampled under
foot, while the servants of Satan triumph...." -
No longer serve Satan. No longer fight God's Truth against your own interests. The Spirit of Prophecy in these lines has made it as plain as it can be made, that when the sealing message is brought to the attention of the people, the servants of the Devil will temporarily triumph, while God's servants and His Truth for a time will be trampled under foot by those who control the churches. This evil work, you are all well aware, is already in progress: The ministering brethren are already fighting the message instead of teaching it. The pulpits are occupied by men who Sabbath after Sabbath stage tirade after tirade against this Truth, the Truth of the Judgment for the Living.
As the gospel prophet in chapter sixty-
Timely Greetings, Vol. 1, No. 52 23
fire. For by fire and by His sword will the Lord plead with all flesh: and the slain of the Lord shall be many. They that sanctify themselves, and purify themselves in the gardens [in places of worship] behind one tree [following a leader] in the midst, eating swine's flesh, and the abomination, and the mouse, shall be consumed together, saith the Lord.... And I will set a sign among them, and I will send those that escape of them unto the nations, to Tarshish, Pul, and Lud, that draw the bow, to Tubal, and Javan, to the isles afar off, that have not heard My fame, neither have seen My glory; and they shall declare My glory among the Gentiles."
Here it is reiterated that the slaying takes place in the church among those who are well acquainted with the things of God, so much so that those who escape are sent to declare His glory, and His fame among the Gentiles. Moreover, the very fact that the Gentiles are not slain but are to be taught of God after the slaying takes place, positively shows that the slaying takes place in the church only, and before probation closes for the Gentiles. To repeat, those who escape the slaying are sent to preach salvation to the Gentiles.
Isa. 66:20 -
Since the 144,000 are the first fruits, and also the servants of God, and are of both the antitypical house of Judah and of Israel, they must be the escaped and
Timely Greetings, Vol. 1, No. 52 24
sent ones. Those whom they bring to the house of the Lord out of all nations (Rev.
7:9) must, therefore, be the second fruits. The former are the fruits from the church,
and the latter the fruits from the Gentiles (See Revelation 7:2-
In order to hush the Truth, the ancients in their wickedness and ignorance now
teach the laity that the subject of the 144,000 is a moot question rather than revealed
Truth! The Devil would have it thus so that the people might fall under the slaughter
weapons of the angels. What folly! And, what a hold the Devil has on the men that
control the churches! Are they not deceiving the very elect, the 144,000? This
is truly the time for you to "come to the help of the Lord against the mighty," if
you are to receive God's mark of approval, and if you are to escape the slaughter
weapons of the angels -
There has never been made so great an effort to awaken any people in any age, as the effort of today. Hundreds and thousands, yes, millions, of booklets have been scattered throughout the Denomination. These have been going now for over a decade. Truly it can even now be said of the church:
"Woe unto thee, Chorazin! woe unto thee, Bethsaida! for if the mighty works, which were done in you, had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. But I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon at the Day of Judgment, than for you. And thou, Capernaum, which art exalted unto heaven, shalt be brought down to hell: for if the mighty works, which have been done in thee, had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. But I say unto
Timely Greetings, Vol. 1, No. 52 25
you, That it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the Day of Judgment,
than for thee." Matt. 11:21-
The Devil today, you see, has the people deeper in the pit than he had them in the days of Christ or in the days of Luther. The Lord's victory, though, and the victory of those who escape from the pit, shall be just that much more glorious. "And they shall call them, The holy people, The redeemed of the Lord: and thou shalt be called, Sought out, A city not forsaken." Isa. 62:12.
"Behold upon the mountains the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace! O Judah, keep thy solemn feasts, perform thy vows: for the wicked shall no more pass through thee; he is utterly cut off." Nah. 1:15.
The wicked in the church, you note, have finally come to their end. With which company do you stand? With those who close their eyes to this Truth? or with those who endeavor to bring It to the front? You judge your own case.
Timely Greetings, Vol. 1, No. 52 26