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.
August 9, 1960
Dear Believers in the Land of Promise,
Since there is some misunderstanding as to why Sister Benjamin Roden is in Israel, let me say that she is not there on just a family visit, as some have thought. But rather, since some of our people in Israel were not interested in the place where the Lord desired to place His name and since it is impossible for me to be there at this time, it became necessary that a representative be sent who could help work out some of the many problems that arise in the process of our people's settling in Israel, also to negotiate with the authorities in behalf of our people.
Therefore, since Sister Roden has stood faithfully, fearlessly, and tirelessly by my side from the very beginning of our work in Odessa, she is therefore the best informed and, hence, the most logical one who could be sent to carry out the desires of the Odessa Office.
It is our earnest desire that all of our good people in Israel will give 100% loyal support to Mrs. Benjamin (Lois) Roden, in her efforts to allocate the Adventist people in Israel.
Sister Roden, as well as myself, holds a Certificate of Fellowship with no expiration date, issued by the Davidian Seventh-day Adventist Association and signed by our late Brother V.T. Houteff, President and Director of the work at Mt. Carmel Center, Waco, Texas and God's representative for us on earth at that time. Therefore, no earthly person or group of persons has the right and authority to revoke these Fellowship Certificates issued by our Lord's Servant. Hence, it is possible that these Certificates mean more to God's work on earth, – more than some may think.
Furthermore, Sister Roden was appointed Secretary and Treasurer over our world-wide work after Sister Ruby Olsen resigned from her position as temporary Treasurer in 1955. Since Sister Roden has no earthly income and no means of her own, it is recommended that her expenses, as well as other expenses, such as car, truck, printing, etc. be paid out of the tithe in Israel since she is spending her full time for the benefit of the Adventists in Israel. The sadly neglected second tithe and offering fund should be built up and used to care for the needy. Diligence among our people in regard to this fund should be greatly encouraged. The enemy is trying with all his might to control and divert the means God designs to be used for His work and thereby restrict and retard our work. "The cause of truth should not be hindered in its onward progress for want of means." Early Writings, p. 96.
"You who believe the truth for this time, wake up. It is your duty now to bring in all the means possible to help those who understand the truth to proclaim it." Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 9, p. 62.
"Relieve the physical necessities of your fellow men, and their gratitude will break down the barriers and enable you to reach their hearts." Ibid., p. 127.
"I heard voices of thanksgiving and praise, and there seemed to be a reformation such as we witnessed in 1844. Yet some refused to be converted. They were not willing to walk in God's way, and when, in order that the work of God might be advanced, calls were made for freewill offerings, some clung selfishly to their earthly possessions. These covetous ones became separated from the company of believers." Ibid., p. 126.
There are murmurings in our ranks that say this movement to Israel by the Adventists is just an affair fostered and controlled by one family. These appear to us as the echo of the voices of an elite group of men sounding down to our time from some four thousand years ago. Those murmurers were not murmuring against the authority of the family whom God had appointed over His work at that time, but they were questioning God. The earth opened up and swallowed those murmurers. It is our earnest prayer and desire that the murmurers of today will quit their murmuring and unite with us in a whole-hearted effort for the up-building of God's Kingdom. Murmuring meant destruction for the murmurers in that day, and God is not a man, that He can be questioned. Their example is for Israel today (1 Cor. 10:11).
It is recommended that no printing or reprinting of Branch studies be done in Israel without the supervision and sanction of Sister Roden. Damage to the cause has been done in the past by some, perhaps well-meaning ones, who have reprinted the lessons and through carelessness made mistakes and unauthorized changes, and in general, put out a very inferior grade of work. We must all work to guard against such in the future.
Please remember that harsh criticism of each other or anyone else is to have no place in our work. Gentleness and kindness is to have sway. Let us work out our salvation with fear and trembling.
It is the desire of the Odessa Office that there shall be an advisory council in Israel, consisting of the following seven members: Brethren Joseph Parkes, Harold Knapp, George B. Roden and John Svab; Sisters Etta J. Amos, Bonnie Gillham, and Mrs. Benjamin Roden.
Brother Joseph Parkes is to be Secretary (Leviticus of D.S.D.A., p. 7, section 4). Sister Bonnie Gillham is to be Treasurer (Leviticus of D.S.D.A., p. 7, section 5.)
Sister Benjamin Roden is to act as Chairman (Leviticus of D.S.D.A., p. 9, section 3a). Meetings may be called in accordance with Leviticus of D.S.D.A., p. 9, section 3 a & b. The purpose of this council is to function after the manner of Acts 6:2-6. These arrangements are allocated to Israel only, and are subject to change by the Odessa Office. The General Headquarters in Israel is Amirim (Leviticus of D.S.D.A., p. 9, section 3a).
In the local picture there are three groups: Gan Yavne, Sabbath School Secretary: Sister Middleton. The Sabbath School Leader may be selected by the group. Secretary for Natanya, Sister Ruth Knapp, if unable to serve, someone else may be selected. Also a Sabbath School Leader may be selected by the group. Sabbath School Secretary for Amirim, Sister Bea Svab. Sabbath School Leader, to start with, will be Benny Roden. We suggest that the Sabbath School Leader should be rotated each month. This will give experience to some who would otherwise not receive this training. The Sabbath School Secretary is to take notes of the procedure of the meetings. All tithes and offerings may be turned into the Secretary, locally. The Secretary will make three copies of the report, she will keep one, send a copy with the tithes etc. once a month to the Treasurer at Amirim and one copy of the report will be sent monthly to the Odessa Office. The over-all Leader at Gan Yavne, Sister Etta Amos; Natanya, Harold Knapp; and Amirim, George Roden. Brothers Harold Knapp and George Roden are to continue as ministers for Israel under the direction of Sister Benjamin Roden, who is to be considered as Temporary Director for Branch Adventists in Israel. This is in hopes that this arrangement will eliminate the confusion and misunderstanding of the past, so as to enable all to work harmoniously in the future.
Yours in the service of the Master,