THE ISSUES discussed herein affect you. You cannot dodge them. You want to know how to meet them right. New political methods are everywhere; dictators and emergency political bodies grab control; governments in fear of radicalism frame special laws; and how, then, can you be loyal and still be true to God? Who are the "higher powers" you should serve? Judge Rutherford's answers herein will help you. No dodging or side-stepping, but straight Scriptural answers; just what you need and want.
AND PUBLISHED BY
WATCH TOWER BIBLE AND TRACT SOCIETY.
International Bible Students Association
Brooklyn, N. Y., U.S.A.
Made in the United States of America
WHAT is the meaning of loyalty?
The word loyal is derived from the same root word as the word law. Loyalty means faithful obedience to the law or rule of action prescribed by a superior or the supreme power.
Is there a difference between a superior and the supreme power? and if so, what is that difference, and which one must we obey?
There is a difference. "Superior power" means a power higher than the individual, such as the state or the nation. The supreme power is Jehovah God, who is the Creator and Life-giver of all living creatures.
Is there a sure and certain guide by which a person may properly determine which is a superior and which is the supreme power? and if so, what is that guide?
The Bible, which is the Word of Jehovah God, is the truth. (John 17:17) The Bible is an absolute and perfect guide by which persons who want to do right may determine what is the right course. "Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path." (Psalm 119:105) Jesus Christ, the Son of Jehovah God, and who is the Redeemer of man and the rightful King of the world, spoke with authority because he always uttered words of instruction given to him by his Father, Jehovah. A similar question was put to him as to when one should obey a superior and when the supreme power. His an-
swer was: "Render therefore unto Caesar the things which be Caesar's, and unto God the things which be God's." (Luke 20:25) "Caesar" symbolically stands for the state or government of men, and it is the duty of one living within the borders of a nation or government to be obedient to the laws of that nation or state which are not in conflict with the law of Jehovah God, the Supreme One. Where there is such conflict one must be obedient to the supreme power, Jehovah God. As Jesus said on that occasion that a man should in obedience to the law of the land pay taxes, likewise a person should obey any and every law of the land or state which is not in conflict with God's law. The law of God is supreme. What, then, are the "things which be God's"? Everything which God has commanded in his Word man should obey; and if that man has agreed to do the will of God, then he must obey every law or commandment of Jehovah God. There is no alternative, if he would remain true and faithful to Jehovah. Every honest person wants to do what is right, and all the laws of God are right and perfect. (Psalm 19: 7,8) Many laws made by men are very imperfect, because the men who make them are imperfect and often are moved by selfishness in making such laws. If one obeys the law of God he can never make a mistake. Wherever the authority or laws of two masters are in conflict no man can serve both masters. Jesus made this certain when he said: 'No man can serve two masters. . . . He cannot serve God and mammon.' (Matthew 6:24) It follows that where there is a conflict between the law of the state, which is made by imperfect men, and the
law of Jehovah God, the man who does right must obey and will obey the law of God.
The first duty of every man is to obey Jehovah God and not to place anything on an equality with or above God. Jesus was asked this question: "What is the great commandment?" and he answered: '''Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind." (Matthew 22: 37) To love God means to obey him. (John 14:15; 1 John 5:3) To all creatures that love God is given this commandment: "Thou shalt have no other gods before me. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; and shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments. Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain; for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain." (Exodus 20:3-7) To take the name of God in vain means that one has agreed to do the will of God and then fails or refuses to obey God, and therefore his agreement to do God's will is a vain thing. Every person taking that course is certain to be destroyed, because God grants life everlasting only to those who do obey him. (Acts 3:22,23; John 17:3) The "things which be God's" are all things which God's law requires his creatures to do. If the law of the state requires a person to do that
which is contrary to the law of God, then the one who desires to live must obey the law of God, regardless of what consequences may result to him by reason of disobeying man's law. The state may inflict the most severe punishment upon one who refuses to obey the law of the state, even though in refusing to obey the law of the state he is obeying God's law. For that reason the person must choose between man or the law of the state and God. The state can destroy your body. God can destroy your very existence anywhere and everywhere. "And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul; but rather fear him. which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell." (Matthew 10: 28) It follows, then, that no state or nation can properly compel a person to disobey God's law.
These words are recorded in the Bible, to wit: "Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God; the powers that be are ordained of God." (Rom. 13:1) Do not these words from the Scripture mean that the men who fill the offices of the state or nation are the "higher powers" and that we must all obey them in order to please God?
No; that is not the meaning of that scripture. You will observe that that scripture is addressed to those who have made an agreement to do the will of God, and whom God has called to be saints. (Romans 1:7) To such the "higher powers" are God and Christ Jesus, the Redeemer of man, and these "higher powers" ordained the apostles to have and to exercise certain powers and authority over the church, meaning over those who have agreed to do God's will. The text
in Romans 13:1 has no reference to the officers of the state or nation. The laws of the various nations are often in conflict with each other. Thus we see that if we apply the above text, of Romans 13:1, to the officers of the state or nation such would be entirely inconsistent, for the reason that God does not make one law for Germany and another law for America. In some nations the true followers of Christ Jesus and others are severely and viciously persecuted by the law-makers and the law-executive officers of that nation, and it is certain that such power so exercised is not ordained of Jehovah God. The text in Romans 13:1 means that all power in the organization of God, "including his church, God has ordained and every one of that organization must be obedient to the ordinances or law thereof. Every true follower of Christ Jesus not only will be willingly obedient but will be gladly obedient to every law of the land that is in harmony with God's law; but to obey a law of man which is contrary to God's law, and thereby violate God's specific law, a man thus puts himself in certain jeopardy.
Could not a person outwardly obey the law of the land, even though that law is in violation of God's law, and still be obedient to God's law, merely haying a mental reservation that he is on God's side?
No; such a thing would be impossible, for the reason that such an act would be hypocritical and God hates hypocrites. To outwardly obey the law of man merely to please men, and to do so with a mental reservation that one does not mean what he says but is in harmony with God, is gross dishonesty. We can deceive men, but we
cannot deceive Jehovah God. He knows our every secret thought.
In some countries the people are compelled to hail the leader or ruler and to give him a certain salute. Is there anything in so doing that is contrary to God's law?
Yes; such a course is in direct violation of God's law, as stated in Exodus 20: 3-7. For instance, in Germany the people are compelled to say, "Heil, Hitler!" and to give a specific salute. The meaning of that phrase and salute is that the person who does it is saying: "I look to Hitler for salvation"; whereas the Scriptures plainly show that salvation is of God and none other. (Revelation 7: 9,10) All who love God will hail Him and Christ Jesus.
Is it right to compel people to salute a flag?
If anyone desires to salute a flag, that is his privilege, and no one has a right to say that he shall not salute it. But to compel people to salute a flag or any other image is wrong, and particularly if that person believes on God and Christ Jesus. For the Christian to salute a flag is in direct violation of God's specific commandment. For a more detailed answer to this question read the broadcast speech appearing in this booklet at page 16.
Would the refusal of a true Christian to salute a flag be disloyalty to the nation wherein the person lives?
No; not by any means. There are no people on earth that are as truly loyal as those who believe on God and Christ Jesus and who serve the Most High. Such persons obey the laws of the land because they want to do right, but the state or nation has no right to make a law com-
pelling them to disobey the law of God. So far as the United States is concerned, the fundamental law of the land guarantees that no man shall be compelled to violate his conscience in things pertaining to the worship of Almighty God.
What master, then, must I obey?
Each person must choose for himself what master he will serve and obey. There are two masters. The one great Master is Jehovah God, and the other one who has the mastery over man is the wicked one, Satan the Devil. To obey Satan means to be destroyed. To obey God means to gain life everlasting in happiness. For a further answer to this question as to whom you should serve, read in this booklet the statement under the heading, "Whose Servant?" page 12.
Since the fundamental law of the land provides that every man shall have the right to worship God according to the dictates of his own conscience, if I go to some church building once a week and there take part in the religious exercises and pay my part in keeping up the expense of the church organization, is that truly worshiping Jehovah God the Almighty!
No; such is not worshiping Jehovah God. Such is merely a religious formalism. It is written in the Scriptures: "Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve." (Luke 4:8) To worship God means to obey his commandments, Jesus said that God is pleased only with those who worship him in spirit and in truth, (John 4:21-24) In order to worship God in spirit and in truth we must believe that he is the Great Spirit and that his Word is truth, and then we must obey his truth. We must
study his Word to ascertain his will, and then we must be gladly obedient to do his will by serving him; and we serve him or worship him by telling others of his truth and concerning his kingdom for the blessing of men, which he has commanded must be done. (Matthew 24:14) The Bible plainly states that salvation can be had only through God's kingdom under Christ Jesus and that there is no other means of salvation. (Matthew 12:18-21; Acts 4:12) To worship God in spirit and in truth, therefore, means that we must learn God's purposes as expressed in his Word of truth and then obey what he has commanded us to do. We are living in that peculiar time now in which the good news concerning his kingdom must be told to the people by all who live and obey him, and who therefore worship him in spirit and in truth.
I have noticed that the wickedness in the land and the trouble upon the people continue to increase, and that this condition has grown much worse since the World War. Can we be sure why such unhappy condition now exists? and what relation, if any, does this wicked condition bear to what is called in the Scriptures "the last days"?
"The last days," as mentioned in the Scriptures, is a period of time between the enthronement of Christ Jesus and the complete destruction of Satan's wicked organization. Satan has long exercised a great wicked power over the peoples and nations of the earth. He knows now that his time is short, and he is desperately attempting to turn all people against God and drive them into destruction, and for that reason he is bringing one woe after another upon the peoples
of the earth. (Revelation 12:12) In this booklet is a statement concerning "the last days" which you should carefully read in connection with the Bible texts bearing upon the same.
If a child has been taught by its parents to love and to obey Almighty God and Christ Jesus, as directed by the Bible, and the child believes that it is a violation of God's law to salute any flag, is it right for school boards to expel such a child from school and thus deny the child the benefit of an education?
To force or attempt to force a child to salute a flag under such circumstances is to do exactly what the Lord says concerning those who disregard his law, which is supreme, to wit: 'They frame mischief by law.' (Psalm 94:20) The child is trying to be righteous, and to force the child to violate its conscience is to do mischief and work injury to the child, and not only is wrong, but is a reproach upon the name of the Almighty God and a flagrant disobedience of his law, which is supreme. Those who do thus 'frame mischief by law', and who refuse a child the benefit of an education because it is loyal to the Almighty God, are workers of iniquity, and to such the Lord God says: "They gather themselves together against the soul of the righteous, and condemn the innocent blood. And he [Jehovah God] shall bring upon them their own iniquity, and shall cut them off in their own wickedness ; yea, the Lord our God shall cut them off." (Psalm 94: 21, 23) Read carefully in this booklet "Saluting a Flag", page 16.
JEHOVAH is the only true God. Satan, the Devil, is the mimic god, the wicked one, and man's worst enemy. Every person serves either Jehovah or the Devil. The following words are written in the Bible, which is God's Word of truth, to wit (Romans 6:16): "Know ye not that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?" Each person must determine whom he desires to serve, either God or the Devil; and the Bible declares that he who knowingly serves Satan shall die, and those who gladly serve Jehovah shall live for ever in happiness.
A few pointed examples will help you to understand who serves Jehovah and who serves the Devil. The National Broadcasting Company, and the Columbia Broadcasting System, together with other selfish men, have undertaken to say that only certain clergymen, whom they approve, shall be permitted to use their radio facilities to preach to the people, and that they must preach nothing that is not approved by them. Those same men attempt to control the politics of the country and engage in many commercial and political schemes, which oppress the people. They could not be serving Jehovah, but must be serving the Devil, because it is the expressed will of God that all men shall have the privilege of knowing what is in the Bible and freely telling others about it.
The German government under Hitler denounces and persecutes all persons who openly
declare that they believe on and serve Jehovah God. Moses was a Hebrew, or Israelite, and one of God's inspired prophets who wrote much of the Bible. The prophecy written by Moses declares that Jehovah would raise up a Greater One, of whom Moses was a type, and that such Greater One would be the Messiah and become the world's rightful Ruler and Jehovah's Executive Officer. Many other Bible texts prove that Jesus Christ is that Greater One, the Messiah. The Hitler government denounces, persecutes and expels from that land Israelites or natural descendants of Abraham, confiscates their property, and denounces Jehovah God and his Word. The Hitler government has undertaken to say that only its state church and the Roman Catholic organization shall freely practice their religion in Germany and that all others in that land must comply with such fixed rules or else be severely punished. Pharaoh of Egypt likewise ill-treated Jehovah's chosen people, and the Scriptures declare that Pharaoh was the special representative of the Devil. The Hitler government is in the same class with Pharaoh, and is certain to meet with the same fate at the hand of Jehovah.
For years in Germany there have been many earnest Christian people known as Bible Students or Jehovah's witnesses who have been going about teaching the people the Bible and bringing comfort to those who are in distress. They have spent millions in that land to help the German people, and now in these times of great world distress those faithful Christian people are wickedly persecuted, arrested, driven through the streets under the lash of whips,
thrown into prison, and some of them killed, merely because such people honestly serve Jehovah God and his King and tell the people about the kingdom under Christ that will bless all the world. It is certain that the Hitler government is not doing this by the will of Jehovah; therefore all must determine that it serves Satan.
At a great assembly of Christian people held at Los Angeles on the 25th day of March, 1934, the following PROTEST was unanimously adopted and was at the same time broadcast over a coast-to-coast network of radio stations, which PROTEST is in these words, to wit:
"For many years Jehovah's witnesses in Germany, unitedly working under the Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society, have engaged in bearing testimony to the name and kingdom of Jehovah God. During the past year the German government without cause or excuse has wrongfully seized, confiscated and destroyed the Bibles, song books, furniture and other property of these faithful Christians, prohibited them to meet together and worship God according to his commandments, and has cruelly persecuted and imprisoned many of them, and, like Pharaoh of old, that government has wickedly opposed Jehovah and defamed his name.
"Therefore we, their brethren, as followers of Christ Jesus, and servants of Jehovah, do earnestly and vigorously protest against such unwarranted treatment of Christians by the German ruling power, and we call upon all true Christians and all fair-minded people throughout the earth, whether Jews or Gentiles, to join in this vigorous protest and demand that Jehovah's witnesses shall, without let or hindrance
on the part of the German government or others, be permitted to go on in their worship and service of Jehovah God in the manner which he has commanded, and we register our protest by declaring against Satan and all such oppression and by taking our stand on the side of Jehovah and his kingdom and his people."
The day is drawing near when Satan and all who serve him shall be destroyed by Christ at the command of Jehovah. Information and warning is now brought to the people, that they may determine whom they wish to serve. All may take the Bible and the facts which are well known and determine thereby what is the proper course to pursue. All persons, therefore, who desire to see righteousness prevail and who wish to live in peace and happiness forever must take their stand firmly on the side of Jehovah God and his kingdom.
In order for anyone to become the servant of God, he does not need to join some organization ; but the proper way is for each person to consecrate himself to Jehovah, thereby agreeing to serve God and his kingdom. Having taken such step, then you should study the Bible and the helps which are provided for the understanding of the Scriptures. In this manner you become teachable and learn the right way to go. Then you should do what is right unto all persons; which means to learn righteousness. In harmony with this Jehovah's prophet wrote, and his words now apply to the people of good will on earth, which words are, to wit: 'Before the wrath of God come upon the wicked world, seek meekness and seek righteousness, and it may be that you shall be hid and protected in the
day of great trouble.' There is only one place of safety, and that is on the side of Jehovah God. Let all persons be free to believe what they will, but if you desire to live and be happy, put yourself on the side of Jehovah God and his kingdom, become his servant and serve him faithfully and truly. Do not follow the teachings of men, but follow the teachings of God's word of truth as set forth in the Bible.
SALUTING A FLAG
[Broadcast over chain Sunday, October 6, 1935, by Judge Rutherford]
"RECENTLY much publicity has been given to the case of Carleton B, Nichols, Jr., a schoolboy of tender years, who declined to salute the American flag and sing "America". He is the son of one of Jehovah's witnesses. The Associated Press has requested me to express my view of the matter. This I do from the standpoint of a true follower of Christ Jesus. To many persons the saluting of the flag is merely a formalism and has little or no significance. To those who sincerely consider it from the Scriptural standpoint, it means much.
The flag representatively stands for the visible ruling powers. To attempt by law to compel a citizen or child of a citizen to salute any object or thing, or to sing so-called "patriotic songs", is entirely unfair and wrong. Laws are made and enforced to prevent the commission of overt acts that result in injury to another, and are not made for the purpose of compelling a person to violate his conscience, and particularly when
that conscience is directed in harmony with Jehovah God's Word.
The refusal to salute the flag, and to stand mute, as this boy did, could injure no one. If one sincerely believes that God's commandment is against the saluting of flags, then to compel that person to salute a flag contrary to the Word of God, and contrary to his conscience, works a great injury to that person. The State has no right by law or otherwise to work injury to the people.
For many centuries Satan the Devil has been the invisible ruler of the nations of the earth. God has suffered or permitted him to so act in order to put a test upon the human race to determine how many will serve God willingly and how many will serve the Devil. For that reason Jehovah God gives this commandment to those who will receive his favor (Exodus 20:3,5): "Thou shalt have no other gods before me. . . . Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them."
At the third chapter of Daniel the Divine Record states that in violation of God's law the government of Babylon made a law commanding all persons, when the national hymn was played, to fall down and worship before a certain image and that those who refused would be put to death in a fiery furnace. Three Hebrews who had covenanted to serve Jehovah God refused to obey that commandment and said to the king: 'We have no need to obey you in this matter; and if it be that you cast us into the fire, our God, whom we serve, is able to deliver us from the fiery furnace; and he will deliver us.' The test was on. The three Hebrews were cast into
the furnace; and because of their faithfulness God delivered them, and thus put his disapproval upon the emblem-saluting law of Babylon.
The present-day attempt to compel school children and others who believe in and serve Jehovah God to salute any flag or sing any song is exactly in line with the Babylonish law just mentioned. To salute a flag means, in effect, that the person saluting ascribes salvation to what that flag represents, whereas salvation is of Jehovah God. The Hitler government, a stench in the nostrils of all honest people, requires all persons of Germany to give a certain salute and to cry out, "Heil Hitler!" and those who refuse to do so are severely punished. At the present time more than twelve hundred of Jehovah's witnesses are in prison in Germany because of the commission of the 'grave offense' of declining to shout, "Heil Hitler!" They trust in Jehovah God and in Christ Jesus, and not in man.
Jehovah's witnesses are men and women who have fully pledged themselves to obey the commandments of Jehovah God and Christ Jesus. They fully comply with the commandment of Jesus, who said: "Render therefore unto Caesar the things which be Caesar's, and unto God the things which be God's." (Luke 20:25) The meaning of that declaration of Jesus is this: Jehovah God is supreme, and his law is above all human laws. "Caesar" stands for the state or human law. All laws of the state or government that are not in conflict with God's law should be gladly obeyed by all who are devoted to Jehovah God. When the law of man is in conflict with the law of Jehovah, then the Christian cannot obey that law of man. The apostles of Christ Jesus placed
this exact construction upon the words of Jesus, In answer to charges of violating the law of the province or state they said to the high court: "Whether it be right in the sight of God [for us] to hearken unto you more than unto God, judge ye. . , . We ought to obey God rather than men." (Acts 4:19; 5:29) Jehovah's witnesses take that same stand. They gladly obey every law of the land that is not in conflict with God's law. But when the law of man is in direct conflict with God's law, they cannot and will not comply therewith.
It is written, at Romans 13:1: "Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers"; and many wrongfully hold that "the higher powers" are the visible rulers of the nations of earth. This scripture is addressed to the followers of Christ Jesus, and to no others, and "the higher powers" are Jehovah God and Christ Jesus, and every true follower of Christ Jesus must obey God in preference to man.
The flag of the United States is not the flag of Jehovah God and Christ Jesus. It is the emblem of the power that rules the nation; and no one can truthfully say that God and Christ Jesus rule a government where crime is rampant. Men have organized governments, and Satan the Devil overreaches men and rules them because of their refusal to obey God, and hence the nations of the world are under the control of Satan the Devil, as stated at 1 John 5:19: "We know that we are children of God, and that the whole world lies in the power of the Evil one." (Weymouth) In proof of this, mark the words of Jesus. That the Devil is the invisible ruler of the world, note this from the Bible:
Satan took Jesus up on a high mountain, and, being the god of this world, he showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and offered to give them to Jesus upon condition that Jesus would fall down and worship the Devil. Jesus refused and said (Matthew 4:10): "Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve."
In further proof, Jesus, at John 12: 31, stated that Satan is the prince or invisible ruler of this world. At John 18:36, He said: "My kingdom is not of this world." Jesus directed his followers to pray to God saying (Matthew 6: 9-12): 'Thy kingdom come; thy will be done on earth as in heaven.' At 2 Corinthians four it is written that Satan is the god of this world and deceives and blinds the people to the truth.
Jehovah's witnesses are true followers of Christ Jesus and must obey his commandments. To them the Lord says (John 15:19): "Because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore, the world hateth you." At John 8: 23: "I am not of this world." At John 14:21: "He that hath my commandments and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me." Concerning his followers it is written in the Scriptures (Philippians 3:20): 'For our citizenship is in heaven.' (Rotherham translation) At 1 John 5:21: "Little children, keep yourselves from idols." At 1 Corinthians 10:14: 'Wherefore, my beloved brethren, flee from idolatry.' This commandment is based upon the commandment at Exodus 20:4, 5.
Jehovah's witnesses are in a solemn covenant or agreement to obey God and Christ Jesus, and
for them to break that covenant means their destruction, as it is written, in Romans 1: 31, 32, that "covenant breakers , . . are worthy of death". At Acts 3:23 they are told that every one who does not obey Christ shall be destroyed. When Jesus was about to be put to death the Roman governor pointed to Jesus and said to the Jews, "Behold your King"; and the Jews answered, "We have no king but Caesar." (John 19:14,15) They were in a covenant to obey God. Their repudiation of their covenant resulted in their destruction. The question to each of Jehovah's witnesses therefore is: "Shall I obey every command of man and die, or shall I obey Jehovah God and live?"
Jehovah's witnesses are not a sect or cult. They are true followers of Christ Jesus. The Bible is their only creed. God has given them a banner or flag, and that is his message of truth, as stated in Psalm 20:5, Jehovah commands his witnesses to "lift up a standard for the people" (Isaiah 62:10), meaning that his witnesses must raise God's standard of truth and point to that as the only salvation of man. Every nation has a different standard; and therefore none of these are God's standard.
The Pilgrim fathers left the oppressive nations of Europe, and landed in New England, because of their sincere desire to be free to worship God according to the dictates of their own conscience. It now appears that in Massachusetts, the very cradle of American liberty, an oppressive rule is attempted to be enforced that takes away the liberty of the citizen to worship God as God has commanded that man shall worship. The government or state is wholly incon-
sistent and unfair in compelling citizens to salute the flag. No one is injured by a man conscientiously serving God as he is commanded by the Lord. Jehovah's witnesses are thoroughly devoted to God and Christ Jesus, and they will obey the laws of God always, and will obey the laws of the state or nation that are not contrary to God's law. No government has a right to compel a man to violate God's law in which- he conscientiously and implicitly trusts.
The Supreme Court of the United States, in Church vs. United States, 143 U.S. 457, authoritatively ruled that the American government is a Christian nation. If the nation is standing by that ruling of the Supreme Court, then the nation must recognise the law of God as superior to the law of man, and where the two are in conflict the Christian must obey the law of God.
On the ships that ply the sea the Roman Catholic service is held. At that service the flag of the pope is displayed above the flag of the United States. The United States Senate went on record, in February, 1929, as favoring the right of the flag of the pope to be thus displayed, and this appears in the Congressional Record No. 47, page 2851. In that instance the senator from Massachusetts took the position that the flag of the pope is the flag of God. I wholly disagree with him in that regard; but giving him credit for believing that the flag of the Catholic church is the flag of God his words are appropriate. He said: "I for one refuse to depart from the time-honored American custom of placing the emblem of God above every other emblem of the world. I will not run down the pennant of God for any other emblem." The Senate, by a vote of 68 to 10,
sustained the senator in that position. The United States government is therefore estopped from saying that the flag of the United States should be honored above Jehovah God.
The most important question before the peoples of earth now is, Whom do you choose to serve, Jehovah or Satan the Devil? The crisis is here because the end of the Devil's reign is at hand. Soon Christ Jesus will destroy all of the Devil's organization visible and invisible, and that includes all who take their stand on the side of the Devil. Each person must choose for himself. There can be no compulsion on either side. As for Jehovah's witnesses, they will serve and obey Jehovah God.
It is a great pity for the people who attend the churches that their clergymen fail to teach them the truth of God's Word, For their neglect the clergymen are doubly responsible. Today the combined church organization celebrates "loyalty day". Do they mean loyalty only to man? If entirely loyal to God they do harm to no one. To compel the saluting of the flag, thereby saying in symbol, "We look to the flag for salvation," is doing great harm to man and reproaching the name of Jehovah God.—Galatians 6:1.0.
The Baltimore Evening Sun editorially expresses the true American sentiment in these words:
"For our part, we glory in Carleton's spunk. Any statute requiring that the flag be saluted by school children is an insult to the Stars and Stripes, and ought to be resented by all patriots. Is our national ensign a swastika flag, to be respected only by forced salutes? Since when has the Star-Spangled Banner so lost the respect of the people over whom it flies that
laws are necessary to make them pretend to honor it ? What a disgraceful thing it is to assume that the flag would not be saluted if people were not afraid to refuse the tribute of respect! ... It is supposed to float because its people have raised it of their own free will and uphold it out of preference—not because they fear it, but because they love it. If the time has come when they must be compelled to pay it a formal and forced tribute, then the time has come to haul it down and hoist in its place some red or black banner of dictatorship of force and fear,"—Baltimore Evening Sun of September 28, 1935.
The Nichols lad has been taught by his parents to serve and obey Jehovah. He has made a wise choice, declaring himself for Jehovah God and his kingdom of righteousness. All who act wisely will do the same thing. The great multitude that serves God is revealed as saying: "Salvation [salutation] to our God, which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the [Christ]."— Revelation 7: 9,10.
Real American citizens who love the principles of the Bill of Rights and the fundamental law of the land, who believe in freedom of thought and freedom of speech, and, above all, in the right of man to worship God according to the dictates of his own conscience, will commend the lad, Carleton B. Nichols, Jr., for the bold stand he has taken for Jehovah. It is foolish to attempt to make good citizens by compelling them to act as hypocrites.
For more than 150 years honest Americans have obeyed the law without being compelled to salute the flag. Why the burning zeal to now compel flag-saluting? The reason is this, and once again I warn the American people, that
the same power that caused Fascism and Hitlerism to seize governments in Europe is moving to seize control of the American institutions, and the policy of compulsory flag-saluting is but a part in that program to put fear into the minds of the people and compel submission to an arbitrary dictator. One mighty religio-political organization is back of the entire program. That organization is not the honest Catholic population, but it is the Roman Catholic Hierarchy, operating from Rome, in its determination to rule the whole earth. It has its political ambassadors in almost all countries. On March 8, 1934, a special cable dispatch from Rome to the New York Sun states that a definite agreement has been reached by President Roosevelt and the Vatican and that diplomatic relations shall be established between the United States and the "Holy See" as soon as public opinion in America can be brought around to the idea. Compulsory saluting of the flag is in line with Hitlerism and a part of the studied, diabolical effort to bring the people around to the Roman idea. It is high time that the loyal and faithful American people realized this great peril. True and honest men of America, in which class Jehovah's witnesses are included, do not need shotgun methods or prisons to compel them to do what is right.
JEHOVAH caused his prophets to write in many places of the Bible concerning a period of time which is therein called "the last days". All careful students of prophecy have
looked for the coming of that time. The evidence now clearly before the world proves that we have come to that period of time. If upon examination of the proof you are convinced that we are now in the last days you will wish to pursue the course which God advises the people to take in that time. For this reason a knowledge concerning the last days is important.
The word "day", as used in the Bible, does not mean a twenty-four-hour period of time. It applies to any fixed or specific time. Mention is made in the Bible of 'Noah's day', meaning the period of time in which Noah acted as Jehovah's witness. Also 'the day of the apostles' is mentioned, meaning the period of time when the apostles of Jesus Christ taught the people. The term "last days", as used in the Bible, means that period of time when Satan's rule without interference comes to an end and God proceeds through Christ Jesus to oust Satan, destroy his organization, and set up His own government of righteousness. "The last days" therefore refers to the end of Satan's rule and the beginning of the reign of Christ. It is the period of transition from wickedness to righteousness, and is marked by a time of much distress. Thoughtful persons frequently propound this question: Is there any proof that we are now living in "the last days" of which mention is made in the Bible? I shall submit to you some of the proof and then let you judge for yourselves.
The period of time designated "the last days" began in the autumn season of 1914. The reason why I make this positive statement is that the chronology and prophecy of the Bible show that 1914 marks the time for the beginning of the
last days and the physical facts prove the fulfillment of the prophecy, therefore the beginning of that time. Jesus is the great Prophet of Jehovah, and he uttered much prophecy which is now in course of fulfillment. He had been instructing his disciples concerning "the last days", and shortly before his crucifixion they came to him and propounded this question, which appears in Matthew, twenty-fourth chapter, to wit: 'Master, tell us, when shall those things be? and what shall be the sign of your coming, and of the end of the world?'
In answer to their question Jesus said nothing about gazing into the sky, as a noted clergyman recently in a scoffing manner answered a humble inquirer for the truth. Jesus said, to prove that we are in the last days of Satan's rule, that the period of time would begin by a world war, followed shortly by famine and pestilence. The proof is that the only world war in which nation arose against nation came in the autumn of 1914, and that war was quickly followed by famine and pestilence in many places of the earth. Jesus said in that great prophecy of his in Matthew twenty-four that such would mark the beginning of the period of time, and then added that those who at that time would act as Jehovah's witnesses to tell these truths to the people would be hated by the ruling powers of all nations. The physical facts show that Jehovah's witnesses in every part of "Christendom" during the World War were cruelly persecuted merely because they were telling about God's kingdom.
Furthermore, Jesus added that then many would set snares and betray others and induce
them to turn away from God. Since 1914 in particular there have been many professed Christians doing this very thing, denying the Bible, the kingdom of God, and turning the people into infidelity. Jesus further added, as additional evidence that we are in the last days, that there would arise false prophets and that these would deceive many. A false prophet is one who claims to speak for God but does not. When God's true prophets were sent to Jerusalem to give warning of the approaching fall of that city there also came other men claiming to speak in the name of God who denied that there was any impending danger and told the people that they were safe and the city was going into greater prosperity. God denounced these as false prophets and caused them to die, as his record shows in the Bible. Now Jehovah commands that his faithful witnesses on earth shall tell the people of the approaching disaster that is soon to come upon "Christendom" and all of Satan's organization in the trouble known as the great battle of Armageddon. At this same time there come to the fore men claiming to be teachers of God's Word and who deny that there is any impending danger to "Christendom" and who tell the people that peace and prosperity is just around the corner.—Jeremiah 28:1-17.
Jesus further answered the question by saying to his disciples that the last days would be marked by lawlessness and that the love of many would wax cold. Everybody today can see the fulfillment of this prophetic statement. Then Jesus added, as appears in Luke 21: 25, 26, this statement, which I quote: 'Upon earth there shall be distress of nations, with perplexity;
men's hearts failing them for fear and for looking after those things which are coming upon the earth.' Can there be any doubt concerning the fulfillment of these prophetic words in this very day? In every nation both the rulers and the people are in perplexity and fear has taken hold upon all people. All can see that conditions are gradually growing worse and no man has offered any adequate remedy for such. Doubtless Jesus instructed his disciples in many matters that do not fully appear in the Bible, and afterwards, as Jehovah's true witnesses, these disciples spoke and wrote concerning the same, as the Bible shows. In 2 Timothy, the third chapter, appears testimony bearing directly upon the question of the last days, which I quote (verse 1): "This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come." Can anyone doubt that the world is now in a time of grout peril? The columns of the newspapers are daily filled with accounts of crime and other things of peril. The second verse of that prophetic utterance I quote, to wit: "For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy." Never in the history of man have conditions existed showing such complete fulfillment of these prophetic statements as now. From this same prophecy I continue to quote these words, verses 3 and 4, to wit: "Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of' pleasures more than lovers of God"
The conditions today overwhelmingly prove that almost everybody is selfish and few are
they that seek to render good to their fellow man. The entire world has gone pleasure-mad, and the people seek such things to hide from themselves their distress. Now mark the words of verse five of the same prophecy, which disclose the conditions existing in the last days amongst the religions organizations or churches. That verse I quote, to wit: "Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof." You well know that there is a form of worship in the churches but it is entirely removed from a true devotion to God.
No one will attempt to successfully deny the fact that the theological schools that turn out the young men as preachers teach these young men evolution instead of the Bible and that the majority of the clergymen are evolutionists and deny the Bible account of man's creation, his fall and his redemption through the blood of Christ Jesus, and deny his kingdom. In all these organizations there is a formalism which is called "divine service" and which is made up of words concerning God, but no love for God is made manifest, and his kingdom is not mentioned. A blasphemer is one who claims that men can accomplish that which in fact only God can do. Organizations of men, such as the League of Nations, supported by churches, claim that men can bring peace and prosperity to the peoples of the world. God's Word shows that only his kingdom under Christ can lift the world out of degradation and into peace and prosperity.
As further proof that we are now in the last days, note the Scriptural prophecy at 2 Peter 3. The great question before true Christians today is the second coming of Christ and his kingdom.
The clergy deny that there is any proof of the second presence of the Lord or approach of his kingdom. When warning is given concerning the approaching destruction at Armageddon practically all the clergymen scoff at Armageddon and the kingdom of the Lord. Note now how these facts well known exactly fit the prophecy of 2 Peter 3:3-5: 'First remember that in the . last days men will come with their mockery, men governed by their own selfish desires and saying, Where is his promised return, for from the time our fathers fell asleep all things continue as they have been since the creation. They are wilfully blind.'— Weymouth.
I submit that the Scriptural proof and the physical facts abundantly support the conclusion that we are now in the last days and that the entire world is at its greatest crisis of all time. What, then, should the people do? Let them follow the admonition of the Bible, which declares that those who would have God's favor should seek meekness and righteousness and devote themselves to God and his kingdom. (Zephaniah 2:2, 3) To aid the people so to do men and women are now going throughout the land with the explanation of the Bible set out in book form. In this hour of distress these witnesses of Jehovah not only give warning of the approaching destruction of "Christendom", but they come also to bring comfort to those who desire to be comforted. In this connection I quote the words of the thirteenth verse of this same third chapter of 2 Peter: "Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness." The new heaven here mentioned
is the new invisible ruling power, which is Christ Jesus, the great King of Jehovah, The new earth is the righteous organization of the people on earth by the visible representatives of Christ Jesus who will execute his judgments and orders in righteousness. That kingdom of Jehovah under Christ is the only hope of the world. It is the complete hope, and the blessings it will bring will far outweigh all the sorrows that come upon mankind. Under that righteous government of Christ fraud and deception will cease in the earth and truth and righteousness shall prevail everywhere. When the people know of and enjoy these blessings they will be glad and will rejoice that the last days of Satan's reign have come and gone for ever and that Christ's kingdom of righteousness has taken charge of the world.
Today darkness covers the earth and gross darkness the people, even as God's prophet Isaiah foretold would he so in the last days. (Chapter 60:1,2) In that same prophecy the Lord directs those who love him to 'arise and tell the people concerning him and his kingdom. This is being done. The people need to inform themselves concerning these truths set out in the Bible. They should hasten to do so. Let classes for the study of the Bible be organized and carried on in your homes. If you and your neighbors have a desire to know the truth, come together in your homes and study God's Word. You owe it to yourselves and to your children; and, above all, it is your privilege and duty to magnify the name of Jehovah, that others may know and learn the way to life and lasting happiness.