토, 10/16/2021 - 06:35


[English] 러더퍼드의 추억, Reminiscence of Br.Rutherford

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In 1918 Joseph F. Rutherford, the then President of the Watchtower Society along with seven other top followers, were arrested by the Department of Justice in the United States of America and taken to Raymond Street jail in Brooklyn, New York, USA.  They paid bail and waited for trial, the charge being that they had violated the Espionage Act of June 15, 1917.  

Authorities said the eight Watchtower Society heads had conspired to hide behind the Bible while conspiring to hinder United States efforts to defend the nation and its Allies then engaged in World War I.  At the top above is a federal prison mugshot of Rutherford.  As of 2011 it was some 101 years old.  The website jw-archive.org is a source for it and other interesting items.

Watchtower pblications decades later falsely claimed the eight Watchtower heads were "exonerated" after the war, that claim totally dishonest because the U.S. Government had only chosen not to further pursue their cases since the war was over, not in any wise deeming that they had not been guilty.  How many people who became Jehovah's Witnesses when Rutherford was alive and since then would have if they knew that he was indeed a criminal?








Quoting: Rutherford's books and magazine articles reveal his strong views on "the proper place of women" in the church and society. In a 1931 book he linked the post-1919 rise of women's movements that encouraged equality of the sexes with satanic influence,[191] and claimed the custom of men tipping their hats to women or standing when a woman approached was a scheme of the devil to turn men from God and indicated an effeminate streak in men who practiced the custom.[186] Mother's Day was similarly described as part of a plan to turn people away from God.[192] In 1938 he urged adherents to delay marriage and child-bearing until after Armageddon,[193]which Wills claims prompted a strong community bias among Witnesses against marriage. Those who did marry, says Wills, were considered to be weak in faith.[194] At a 1941 convention in Missouri he quoted Rudyard Kipling's description of women as "a rag and a bone and a hank of hair".[186][195]






In this booklet published in 1920, Joseph F. Rutherford promised that millions then alive would never die.  He did this after so many Bible Students quit donating to his branch of the Bible Students movement.  The requirement for them to "live forever" was to follow himself to wherever he might lead them.   In the early 2000s the Watchtower Society began claiming Rutherford didn't say people "will" live forever but only that they "may" live forever.   As seen above here a leaflet advertising the booklet shows the opposite is the truth.


Pursuit of living forever, never having to die has been a dream that hs led people such as the Spanish conquistadors to traverse mountain ranges and desserts.  So it is no surprise that Rutherford was able to win new converts and a steadier supply of money.  Watchtower would mislead and fleece the flock for as long as possible.







The earlier President of the Watchtower Society, Charles Taze Russell, taught from the 1870s on that God had not forgotten or abandoned his promises of blessings for Abraham’s seed the Jewish people, and God would restored them to the land of Israel and in due time brings blessings for them and all people around the globe.  

However after Russell’s death in 1916 Joseph Franklin Rutherford seized control of the Watchtower Society over Jehovah’s Witnesses.  In 1931 he renamed his branch of the Bible Students movement the “Jehovah’s Witnesses,” and he taught his followers from then on to believe that Jehovah’s Witnesses, not literal Jews or anyone else, are the “witnesses of Jehovah.”  Rutherford applied all scriptures about blessings to his Watchtower Bible and Tract Society Inc but applied the other scriptures that spoke of punishment to only the literal Jews.   




Then on June 25, 1933 Rutherford had over 7,000 Jehovah’s Witnesses assemble in Berlin, Germany, to adopt a resolution called “Declaration Of Facts” which was printed on millions of tracts and mailed to all high Nazi government officials including Adolf Hitler and left all over Germany.  In it Rutherford said of his Watchtower organization:



“It is falsely charged by our enemies that we have received financial support for our work from the Jews. Nothing is farther from the truth. Up to this moment there never has been the slightest bit of money contributed to our work by Jews. The greatest and most oppressive empire on earth is the Anglo-American empire. By this is meant the British Empire, of which the United States of America forms a part. It has been the commercial Jews of British-American Empire that have built up and carried Big Business as a means of exploiting and oppressing the peoples of many nations.


“This fact particularly applies to the cities of London and New York, the stronghold of Big Business. This fact is so manifest in America that there is a proverb concerning the city of New York which says: ‘the Jews own it, the Irish Catholics rule it, and the Americans pay the bills.’  We have no fight with any of these persons mentioned but, as witnesses for Jehovah and in obedience to his commandment set forth in the Scriptures, we are compelled to call attention to the truth concerning the same in order that the people may be enlightened concerning God and his purpose.”  It added “The present government of Germany has declared against Big Business oppressors [America and Britain] and in opposition to the wrongful religious influence in the political affairs of the nation.Such is exactly our position.”

To tickle Adolf Hitler’s ears even more it said: “Instead of being against the principles advocated by the government of Germany, we stand squarely for such principles, and point out that Jehovah God through Christ Jesus will bring about the full realization of these principles.”  So at the start Rutherford is saying the Watchtower Society agrees with Hitler in being against the Jewish people, but then he makes the mistake of saying that people should look to God instead of Hitler.  That angered Hitler who wanted Germans to look to himself not God. 



Rutherford wrote anti-Semitic remarks in other works either because he himself was very bigoted or still seeking to please Adolf Hitler.  He wrote in 1934 on page 5 in a booklet Favored People: “The current men called Jews are tradesmen among whom are some of the richest men and most miserly that the world knew. Certain generals of the Great merchants are named Jews. Many are arrogant, proud and very selfish.” In 1937 Judge Rutherford wrote in Enemies (p. 281): (p. 281): “There are extremely egotistical men called ‘Jews’ that have interest only for the lure of gain.”




However, Hitler did not stop seizing Watchtower’s property in Germany etc, so  Rutherford on October 7, 1934, had all Congregations of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Germany to assemble again. This time they heard a letter by Rutherford written to be read to Nazi government officials, especial Hitler, stating “There is a direct conflict between your law and God’s law . . . Therefore this is to advise you that at any cost we will obey God’s commandments, will meet together for the study of His Word, and will worship and serve Him as He has commanded.”  This infuriated Hitler.

To add more fuel to the flames, that very same day Jehovah's Witnesses in forty-nine other nations met and backed Rutherford by sending Hitler telegrams saying "Your ill-treatment of Jehovah’s Witnesses shocks all good people of earth and dishonors God’s name. Refrain from further persecuting Jehovah’s Witnesses; otherwise God will destroy you and your national party.”  It was reprinted in the Awake! magazine dated 8/22/95.




Hitler ordered all Jehovah’s Witnesses forced into Nazi concentration camps.  Meanwhile Rutherford lived in Brooklyn and sometimes in Beth Sarim, a mansion which he had on a 100 acre estate in San Diego.  Few regular Jehovah’s Witnesses knew of the mansion or his luxurious sixteen-cylinder Cadillacs.  Although he died in 1942 his anti-Semitic “Replacement Theology” continues to be one of the mainstays of the Watchtower Society over Jehovah’s Witnesses, and it is opposed by the rival Bible Students movement. (Dawn Bible Students, Associated Bible Students, Chicago Bible Students, etc)




The Bible Students, from whom Joseph F. Rutherford of central Missouri rose to tear away the Watchtower organization, preach universal resurrection is for all humans (Read Acts 24:15, John 3:16), Jehovah God has blessings in store for Christians, Jews, and indeed all humanity.  Meanwhile the Watchtower Society’s heads teach Jehovah’s Witnesses to call Bible Students and others who disagree with them on anything “evil slaves,” “apostates” etc.  In contrast Christ gave his very life for all not just some, and he also taught love even your enemies. (Read Luke 6:35)   Feel free to make and distribute copies of this. (John 8:32)







Rutherford in 1891
This shows Joseph Rutherford when he was young.
November 8, 1869 to January 8, 1942









Joseph F. Rutherford was born November 8, 1869, on a farm in central Missouri to life-long members of the Freedom Baptist Church.   His father was James Calvin Rutherford, a farmer from Versailles, Missouri.  His mother's maiden name was Lenora (or possibly Lanora) Strickland.  

The father died July 11, 1912; the mother died October 9, 1926, blind and invalid.  Both parents were "honest, hardworked and respected" people, buried in the cemetery near the Baptist church which was only about a mile from the home.  

The family resided at the same farm for at least fifty years.  Although no longer Baptist, of course, when his mother died, Rutherford returned home and preached at her funeral.



Rutherford grew up at Haw Creek in Morgan County, Missouri. His father was born in Michner, Tennessee; and his mother was born at Senneku, Tennessee.  In the U.S. federal census of 1880 their children were listed as Virginia (spelling?; age 20), a school teacher; Anna (19), Salena (17), William (15), Florence (13), Joseph himself (age 11) and Berkie (spelling?, age 4).  Such large families were common at the time.



Rutherford's oldest brother W.P. Rutherford died out West, possibly in California a few years before 1937.  Sisters included Mrs Flora Chism, Mrs Lena McDaniels, Mrs Anna Neville,  Mrs Ella Newkirk of Tipton, Missouri, Mrs Virginia Ross of Versailles, Missouri, and younger brother James B. Rutherford who lived in Kansas City, Missouri.



Joseph's brother William Rutherford was once disfellowshipped for "dancing," perhaps at an end of the year party.  This was probably literally for dancing, a fun activity which very few churches still frown upon.  However, it is also possible that the word was used in the church records (January 1, 1885), as a euphemism for some other "sin" or possibly another sin occurred along with the dancing.

Given that the family was so active in the church, as shown by 1870-1890 records, the term "dancing" may have been entered into the book in deference to the Rutherford family.  Joseph was then in his teens and still at home when his eldest brother was disfellowshipped.




The Baptist preacher overseeing the Rutherford family's church was Jehu Robinson.  He was well-known among Baptists in the county, and as with Joseph Rutherford's parents also lies buried in Freedom Cemetery some 3 1/2 to 4 miles north of Versailles, Missouri.  A photo of him looks quite foreboding.

Robinson's Freedom "Baptist" Church disfellowshipped members for offenses such as attending another church, dancing, and drinking.  Generally three spiritually mature Brothers were chosen to investigate such sins, exactly remindful of how Jehovah's Witnesses still disfellowship in the 2000s.  

Although disfellowshipping "officially" did not begin until after Joseph Rutherford died, it as well as the later policy against blood usage even for emergencies, did unofficially although forcefully start with him.   At least insofar as the idea of Judicial Committees and disfellowshipping goes among JWs, these may then go back to Rutherford's attendance at the church of his parents.



Another source, a census gives as sibling names: W. P. Rutherford, Mrs. Flora Chism (aka Florence Rutherford), Mrs. Lena McDaniels (aka Salena Rutherford), Mrs. Anna Neville, Mrs. Ella Newkirk (possibly born after 1880), Mrs. Virginia Ross, James B. Rutherford (aka Berkie Rutherford).



Joseph F. Rutherford later became an atheist and went from there to being a member of the Bible Students which after he became President he renamed Jehovah's Witnesses.  He sold books at people's homes to earn his way to an education and became an attorney, served several times as a county judge in Missouri and so was nicknamed The Judge.  









The advertisement on your left has among a list of attorneys "Wright And Rutherford" at the top.  Rutherford was Joseph Franklin Rutherford of Boonville in central Missouri who became President of the Watchtower Society after Charles Taze Russell.




Rutherford figured out early on that he could make a lot of money from publishing.  Here is a copy of a handy book that he produced and sold in Missouri.




After Rutherford had become the President of Watchtower he made a lot of attacks on Catholicism.  A priest who lived near Rutherford's home area noted those and so began defending Catholicism from Rutherford.



By fjthoth (Frank Toth, Canada) re the cars of Watchtower presidents Joseph Rutherford and Nathan Knorr: When I was about 12 years old, I was told by my "congregation servant" that the cars were gifts from a "Brother Parkhurst" who was a real estate agent or car dealer in New Jersey. Since then, I've heard that another wealthy JW in Washington DC provided Rutherford and Knorr with cars.His name was Anton Koerber. He was rewarded with an appointment as a circuit overseer. Later, I believe, he had an unpleasant run-in with Knorr that led to his being stripped of "privileges." I remember thinking that his speaking voice was extremely annoying. His life story is in the May 15, 1968 issue of the Watchtower.



Being a "prince upon earth," Rutherford had the most regal of cars for his time - a 16 cylinder Cadillac.  Actually he kept on hand not one but at least three of them.  Supposedly they were for King David and other "Ancient Worthies" but in fact Rutherford used them.



Rutherford often flew from the East Coast to California where he resided in his mansion named Beth Sarim that few of the mostly poor rank-and-file Jehovah's Witnesses knew anything about.  A second mansion in California was Beth Shan, in Hebrew meaning "House (of) Princes."  Supposedly the mansions (as with the Cadillacs) were for Ancient Worthies like Abraham and David who would return someday, but Rutherford and his intimates actually used them.  Beth Shan  ("House of Security) included two bomb shelters.  They were on a 100 acres section of land with a canyon in between them.



Rutherford was very good at quoting scriptures.  He also drank and was said to often be drunk.  During Prohibition he had alcohol smuggled by truck across from Canada into a room in Brooklyn.  Edmund Gruss and others have noted that Nathan Knorr, the next Watchtower President, may have assisted or directed Bethelites in getting the liquor from Canada southward to Rutherford. 








The woman in the right side photo may also have been his wife or some other female admirer.


He was also alleged to have female companions other than his wife Mary* such as Berta Peale and Bonnie (Boyd) Heath.  When followers at Buffalo, New York, found out about one of the alleged mistresses, they formed a separate group.






On the left is Rutherford when young.  On the right is a photo of his son Malcolm.



When Joseph Rutherford died in 1942 it was from cancer.   Neither his long separated wife, Mary, nor his one son, Malcolm C. Rutherford,**  showed up at his funeral. 



* Wife Mary M Rutherford was born named Mary Fetzer in about 1868 in Missouri.  She and Joseph Rutherford wed in 1890.  She was a Presbyterian who converted with her husband to being a Bible Student, later known as a Jehovah's Witness.  At life's end her residence was at 160 N. Primrose in Monrovia, Los Angeles, California.  In one census she is mentioned as having also had residence in Hornsville, Missouri, which may have been a town that only used to exist, or perhaps it was short for or a mis-writing of Hornersville or Hartsville, Missouri.  Of the two, Hartsville would be more likely as it too is in central Missouri.   Her father was John Fetzer, a very wealthy physician from Westerberg, Germany, though born at Wirtemberg.  Her mother was also named Mary and came from Hannover, Germany, although France is also said to have been her nation of birth.  She was the sole child and the family had a servant named Hannah Prigg when the family lived in Rolla, Missouri, in 1910.

** Son Malcolm C. Rutherford was born November 10, 1892, and died June 22, 1989.  He lived in Arcadia, California, at age 97.  







Also please credit information originating from Randy Watters and Barbara Anderson as well as those posting on the JWD forum strings about Rutherford and his associates.







The Watchtower Society misprophesied that the world would end in 1914.  In this photo Charles Taze Russell, Joseph Rutherford and others of Watchtower's main heads along with family members are on the Mount Of Olives in Jerusalem.  Why?  Because they believed Christ was about to return and start resurrecting people there.  They wanted to be present for the resurrection and hoped to go on up to heaven.  If they had read the Bible better and been more honest to themselves and other people, they would have known that Christ says nobody knows when the end will come except for the Father.



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Christ says nobody knows when the end will come except for the Father.

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