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That everyone who thirsteth for the truth may obtain it, these publications are, as a Christian service, provided without charge. They levy but one exaction: the soul's obligation to itself to prove all things and hold fast to that which is good. The only strings attached to this free proffer are the golden strands of Eden and the crimson cords of Calvary - the ties that bind.
Benjamin L. Roden



Vol. 2No. 5
Branch Ensign

"And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse,
and a Branch shall grow out of his roots. Isa. 11:1"


STUDY HELP: Branch Lesson No. 3, July 10, 1958.

STUDY AIM: To compare once again the year 1500, with the year 1525, following each through to the antitype at the end of the 430 year prophecies, showing how one date was historically founded but the other was not.

INTRODUCTION: The date 1930 connected with the start of the Shepherd's Rod message has been found to be indefinite because the starting date of the 430 year prophecy of Ezekiel 4, 1500, from which the prophecy is taken is indefinite. However, with the coming of the Branch message we find the starting of the 430 year prophecy of Ezekiel 4, beginning in 1525, to be a historical date – correct and definite. Therefore, the Judgment of the Living starting in the Autumn of 1955 begins at a definite time just as did the judgment of the Dead in the Autumn of 1844.

Questions based on page 5 of the lesson help:

1.  What reason did V.T. Houteff give for using 1500 as the start of the 430 years? 2 S.R. 275.

2.  Did Luther actually find the Bible in 1500? Branch Lesson #3, p. 5:6.

3.  When did he begin to read the Bible? Branch Lesson #3, p. 4:10; 5:6; G.C. 122:2.

4.  Adding 430 to 1501 what do we have?

Note --- "We may suppose the 390 year period began in about 1500 A.D., (when Luther found the Bible), and ended in 1890 A.D., where the 40 year period began, which would end in 1930. However, we cannot point out the exact day or month, or even the year, because (1) we do not know the exact day of the call of Luther; (2) prophecy deals with the Jewish, or perhaps the Hebrew year, therefore, it is a matter of months that we cannot determine. It may run until 1931, or even after, ..." 1 S.R. 116:1.

5.  What came at this time? Branch Lesson #3, p. 5:6.

6.  In what manner and at what time did the Rod message really begin? Branch Lesson #3, p. 5:6.

Note --- "We have previously stated that this truth (of the Shepherd's Rod) came through the Sabbath School Department (S.D.A.) in 1929, in the lessons of the first quarter of that year, beginning with Isaiah 54, to the 66th chapter inclusive. The 54th was the first to reveal that these chapters were written directly to the church at this very time..." 1 S.R. 240:3. (Paren. ours)

"The message in The Shepherd's Rod did not come all at once; it is the result of Bible studies for almost two years." Symbolic Code, Vol. 10:7:4.

7.  What else of importance took place in 1929? Branch Lesson #3, p. 5:6.

Note --- "In 1929 negotiations were concluded in Rome for the settlement of the Roman question and a treaty for reconciliation between the Holy See and Italy granting recognition of the sovereignty and independence of the Pope...The treaty...was signed…on Feb. 11, 1929, by Cardinal Gasparri, acting for Pope Pious XI, and Premier Mussolini, on behalf of King Victor Emmnue1... the treaty reaffirms the principle in the first article of the 'Italian kingdom's constitution' by which Catholicism is the only state religion in Italy." Funk & Wagnall's Enc. under 'Lateran Treaty'.

8.  Did the Branch message (Judgment of the Living) begin with a definite date? Branch Lesson #3, p. 5:7.

9.  Who did Judgment begin for in 1955? Branch Lesson #3, p. 5:8.

10.  What took place in 1526? Branch Lesson #3, p. 5:9; G.C. 197:3.

11.  Who did Judgment begin for 430 years later in 1956? Branch Lesson #3, p. 5:9.

12.  Where was the church to be judged? 5 Test. 83:2; Branch Lesson #3, p. 5:10-12.

Read the complete article entitled "The Testimonies Slighted" – 5 Test. 62-84.


MEMORY VERSE: "He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches." Revelation 3:22.

STUDY AIM : To understand the position of the S.D.A. church since the judgment for the Living started for her in 1956.

STUDY HELP: Branch Lesson No. 3, July 10, 1958; Shepherd's Rod, Vol. 1, pp. 64-80.

INTRODUCTION: "I am filled with sadness when I think of our condition as a people. The Lord has not closed Heaven to us, but our own course of continual backsliding has separated us from God. Pride, covetousness, and love of the world have lived in the heart without fear of banishment or condemnation. Grievous and presumptuous sins have dwelt among us. And yet the general opinion is that the church is flourishing, and that peace and spiritual prosperity are in all her borders. The church has turned back from following Christ her Leader, and is steadily retreating toward Egypt." 5 Test., p. 217.

Questions based on pages 5 and 6 of the lesson help:

1.  As a result of rejecting Christ in His messages where has the church ended up? 5 Test., p. 217.

2.  In ancient Egypt who did Joseph represent? 1 S.R. 77.

3.  Who are we told was represented by the first Pharaoh? 1 S.R. 71:2.

Note --- "If Joseph typified Christ, Pharaoh honored Joseph above any man ever honored by any king, and Joseph – and Pharaoh work hand in hand, then Pharaoh must stand for some figure, or type...we understand that Pharaoh represents the apostle's church, or organization." 1 S.R. 69:2, 3.

4.  What happened which brought this situation to a close? Exodus 1:8.

5.  Who did this new Pharaoh represent? 1 S.R. 77; Branch Lesson #3, p. 6:0.

Note --- "…the Seventh-day Adventist Church is a type of Egypt and the leadership is a type of Pharaoh, who knew not Joseph,..." 11th Hour Extra – Riddle #1, p. 1:10.

6.  What does it mean to not know Joseph? 1 S.R. 77; 5 Test. 217.

7.  What did the Branch predict began Oct. 22, 1956? Branch Lesson #3, p. 6:2. See G.C. letters 1-7.

8.  How was this date arrived at? Branch Lesson #3, p. 6:2.

9.  What did the Branch then predict at the beginning of 1957, that God would do to Pharaoh (the S.D.A. leadership)? Ezekiel 30:20-24.

10.  What happened to show that this had taken place? D.H.G. 6:4.

Note --- "...the Gen. Conf. brethren went before the beast power in 1956 (Martin and Barnhouse) with a broken arm (health reform Ezekiel 30:20-22), they dropped their sword (Sabbath and Sanctuary truth)." Dear Heritage of God, p. 6:4.

11.  The death of Sr. White in 1915 marked the beginning of what period of time? Branch Lesson #3, p. 6:4.

12.  What was the message that came at the end of this time to do? Branch Lesson #3, p. 6:4.

13.  What ceased at this time – 1955? Branch Lesson #3, p. 6:4.

14.  What period began? Branch Lesson #3, p. 6:4.

Note --- May each one of us put away those sins which caused our forefathers to fail in times past and get ready to stand in this time of the Judgment of the Living. Today Jesus has revealed His new name – Branch, and He is pleading with all to accept the message He has sent, therefore, "Cast away from you all your transgressions, whereby ye have transgressed; and make you a new heart and a new spirit: for why will ye die, O house of Israel?" Ezekiel 18:31.


MEMORY VERSE: "Therefore let us keep the feast (Passover – Lord's Supper), not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth." 1 Cor. 5:8. (Paren. added)

STUDY HELP: Branch Lesson No. 3, July 10, 1958.

STUDY AIM: To understand more about the antitypical Passover – Lord's Supper which came in 1960, and the message (Branch) that revealed its restoration, so that we can have the extra oil and be counted among the wise.

INTRODUCTION: "...the old prophecy (the type) only gives the details from the beginning of the third angel's message to the fulfillment of Ezekiel 9." 1 S.R. 116:1.

Questions based on pages 6 and 7 of the lesson help:

1.  Abraham's prophecy of 430 years dating from 1530 deals with what event? Branch Lesson #3,p. 6:5.

2.  Into what two parts was it divided? Gen. 15:13; Ex. 12:40.

3.  What came at the end of the first 400 years in 1930? Rev. 7:1-8; Branch Lesson #3, p. 6:5.

4.  Thirty years later in 1960 what began for the church? Branch Lesson #3, p. 6:5.

5.  How long was the D.S.D.A. organization given to make good from 1955? Branch Lesson #3, p. 7.

Note --- October 1955 marked the beginning of the Judgment of the Living for Davidian S.D.A. (those with the most light – 1 Pet. 4:17). "Christ in His teaching linked with the warning of judgment the invitation of mercy." (C.O.L. 212) Four years were given to the barren fig tree to make good. "…in the parable (Luke 13:6-9) only after the third fruitless year would the Lord consider cutting down the barren fig tree, and even then He was convinced to wait another year...nevertheless, as in the parable, no fruitless tree is to be spared beyond the fourth parabolic year." (2 T.G. 46:22) Therefore, 1959 marked the close of probation for D.S.D.A. as an organization, but not as individuals.

6.  As a result of Davidians failure to make good by 1959, what did God do as a sign of their rejection? D.H.G., p. 4:5-7.

NOTE --- "The Timely Greetings say that the Davidians had no need to institute the Lord's Supper as long as they were in the S.D.A. church,…The Davidians gave notice to the world in 1959 that if God did not purify the church by slaying the tares, God was no longer leading them,...The Davidians placed the Shepherd's Rod message on the alter with their predictions and further confirmed their mistake when they invited the General Conference brethren to take over the meetings at Mt. Carmel...This was our cue to ordain the Lord's Supper. Because in 1956 the General Conference made a similar commitment in some respects to the Sunday-keeping Protestants. Therefore, since the church, both S.D.A. and D.S.D.A. have drifted out to sea without chart or compass, the Branch seized Heaven's appointed time, to do Heaven's bidding and command that we should keep God's statutes and judgments 'throughout your generations'." Dear Heritage of God, p. 4:5-7.

7.  What chance still remains for the individual to accept the message? Rev. 3:20.

Note --- "Behold, I (Christ in the messenger He sends – C.O.L. 79) stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me." Rev. 3:20. (Paren. added)

8.  What happens to the foolish who do not open the door and receive the extra oil? 2 S.R. 185, 186.

9.  Why does God test His people with a time message? Branch Lesson #3, p. 7:4.

10.  Which message is being repeated in this time of Judgment? Rev. 14:8; T.M. 59; Rev. 18:1, 2.

11.  Is this message to be complete? How do we know? Branch Lesson #3, p. 7:5; Zech. 3:9; 1 T.G.r. 8:25:1.


MEMORY VERSE: "Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord." Malachi. 4:5.

STUDY HELP: Branch Lesson No 3, July 10, 1958.

STUDY AIM: To understand more about the time of the Judgment of the Living, as it extends from Heaven down to earth.

INTRODUCTION: "That part of the Investigative Judgment of the Living, by which is determined who are to have their sins blotted out and, as a result, be given eternal life, is paralleled on earth by the work of the angel with the 'writer's inkhorn'." 2 Ans., p. 41.

Questions based on pages 7 and 8 of the lesson help:

1.  Where has the Judgment for the Dead been going on since 1844? Rev. 4; C.O.L. 310:2.

2.  What indication do we have that the Judgment for the Living takes place not only in Heaven but also on earth? Rev. 8:5; Ezekiel 9; Rev. l8:1; 2 Ans. p, 41; see introduction.

3.  While this is taking place what should God's people be doing? G.C. 425; Branch Lesson #3, p. 8:3.

4.  For what event did Sr. White say time was not to be set? Branch Lesson p.7:4.

5.  How is it that the four angels bound in the Euphrates each has time connected to them during probationary time? Rev. 9:14, 15.

6.  What do these four angels represent? Branch Lesson #3, p. 8:0.

NOTE --- "(1) The first angel in its first phase is symbolized by the angel of Rev. 9:14 bound in Euphrates (Babylon) (2) The third angel in its first phase is the second movement (angel) bound in Babylon (Euphrates) (3) The first angel in its SECOND phase (forerunner for judgment of living) is the THIRD movement (angel) bound in the river (nations Isa. 8:7) (4) The Judgment of Living at the house of God is the FOURTH angel, movement bound by Babylon's river. Four angels, four movements bound in Babylon's river – Euphrates." The Harvest, p. 5:1.

7.  What messenger was promised before the great and dreadful day of the Lord? Mal. 4:5.

8.  What does he bring to the attention of God's people? Mal. 4:4; Branch Lesson #3, p. 8:6, 7.

9.  How long are we told these feasts were to be kept? Lev. 23:31.

10.  What did Jesus counsel us to do? John 15:10.

11.  Does the message of the angel of Rev. 13:1 come at a certain time? E.W. 277.

NOTE --- "The message of the fall of Babylon, as given by the second angel, is repeated. The work of this angel comes in at the right time to join in the last great work of the third angel's message, as it swells to a loud cry." E.W. 277.

12.  What should these things prove to us?

Answer --- Sr. White told us time was not to be set for the second coming of Christ. This, however, should not be taken to mean that there is to be no more time. The fact that the angel of Rev. 13:1 (which was future from Sr. White) comes at the right time and Elijah comes before a certain time (the great and dreadful day of the Lord), shows that time plays an important part in the plan of salvation and the messages connected with it. We should therefore, heed the message of Elijah – the message of Rev. 18:1 as depicted by the fourth angel of Rev. 9:15. He it is who reveals the commandments and statutes of the law of Moses (Mal. 4:4, 5) which are to be kept during the time of the Judgment of the Living.

13.  Are you among the wise who have the extra oil – present truth for this phase of the Judgment which concerns the living?

"We should move steadily forward, never losing heart or hope in the good work, whatever trials beset our path, whatever moral darkness may encompass us. Patience, faith, and love for duty, are the lessons we must learn. Subduing self, and looking to Jesus, is an every-day work. The Lord will never forsake the soul that trusts in him, and seeks his aid. The crown of life is placed only upon the brow of the overcomer. There is, for every one, earnest, solemn work for God....The word is, Go forward; discharge your individual duty, and leave all consequences in the hands of God. If we move forward where Jesus leads the way, we shall see his triumph, we shall share his joy. We must share the conflicts, if we wear the crown of victory. Like Jesus, we must be made perfect through suffering. Had Christ's life been one of ease, then might we safely yield to sloth. Since his life was marked with continual self-denial, suffering, and self-sacrifice, we will make no complaint if we are partakers with him. We can walk safely in the darkest path, if we have the Light of the world for our guide." 5 Testimonies, p. 70, 71.

"What voice will you acknowledge as the voice of God? What power has the Lord in reserve to correct your errors, and show you your course as it is? What power to work in the church?" 5 Testimonies, p. 68.

Read Zechariah chapter 3 and chapter 6, verses 9 to 15.

"What can all this mean? – Just this: Joshua is Heaven's appointed judge, ruler. He himself is crowned as such. And in response to the Lord's Own command, Joshua crowns (authorizes) his helpers whom the Lord Himself names. In other words, as members of 'the house of David,' Joshua authorizes them to engage in the work. So, Joshua is responsible to the Lord, but his helpers are responsible to Joshua. Here is seen an organization having a Leader and an under leader – the Lord and Joshua. Thus it is that whatever is to be bound on earth, is also to be bound in Heaven (Matt. 16:19)." 1 T.G.r. 8:26.

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