Originally posted by WellerWhen nothing supernatural happened in 1918, the Watchtower Society looked forward to momentous events in
Again, I cannot say that nothing happened in 1918. At the beginning of the year, the Joint Arab-Jewish agreement on the Jewish homeland was signed,
which laid the grounds for a greater influx of Jews into land that once belonged to Israel.
As a whole, I would say that the Bible Students rejected Rutherford's thoughts on 1925. The date, 1925, however, had been discussed long before 1914
-- it was not a new date introduced after 1914 or 1918. In the Overland Monthly of 1910, Russell presented some calculations which would result in the
year 1925. Although he presented those calculations, he did not accept them as having any importance, but some of the Bible Students thought they were
indicative of when the church would be completed and began holding expectations concerning 1925. Russell produced a letter from one of the Bible
Students concerning 1925 in the March 1, 1911 Watch Tower, beginning on page 76. Russell, at that time, made no comment on the calculations presented.
In the April 15, 1916 issue of the Watch Tower, beginning on page 126, under the heading "Spirit of a Sound Mind", Russell presented a letter from
one of the Bible students concerning the year 1925 and concerns that some were saying that Russell was teaching that the church would be completed in
1925. Russell wrote in response to that letter:
We cannot help it that many of the dear friends continue to tell what THE WATCH TOWER believes, and to misrepresent its teachings. Our kindest
thought must be that they are not giving much heed to its teachings. Otherwise they would know from its columns that we are not looking forward to
1925, nor to any other date. As expressly stated in THE WATCH TOWER, we are simply going on, our last date or appointment having been passed more than
a year ago.
We believe that the dates have proven to be quite right. We believe that Gentile Times have ended, and that God is now allowing the Gentile
Governments to destroy themselves, in order to prepare the way for Messiah's Kingdom. The Lord did not say that the Church would all be glorified by
1914. We merely inferred it and, evidently, erred.
Thus, this shows that in April of 1916, that Russell was not looking forward to any date beyond 1914. He also admits that he erred in expecting that
the church would be glorified in 1914, but not in his expectations concerning the time of trouble as having begun in 1914.
In the July 1, 1916 issue of the Watch Tower, the matter regarding 1925 came up again as one of the Bible Students wrote another letter which begins
on page 207 under the heading: "False Reports Injurious". Except for the heading, Russell made no comment on the letter, but the heading indicates
his agreement that it was false that he was expecting that the church was to be gathered in the year 1925.
Throughut, Russell appears to have been acting in accord with his policy that each was to come to his own conclusion, and not just accept what he said
because he said it. Nevertheless, in this case, it appears that some were attributing Russell himself as having said something that he did not say,
that is, that the church would be all gathered -- glorified -- in the year 1925, which was a different matter.