MODERN  HISTORY  OF  THE  7TH  DAY  OBSERVING  PEOPLE  OF  THE  CHURCH  OF  GOD  #13



The Meats Issue

Also Tobacco


In 1866, articles began to appear in the Hope of Israel against the use of pork, apparently prompted by deaths from trichinosis.


Generally, the meats issue was not a test of doctrine, and not included specifically in Church of God articles of belief.  Jacob Brinkerhoff and A. F. and A.N. Dugger, long editors of the Advocate, were personally opposed to eating pork. The May 12, 1908 issue noted that the editors believed in the law of clean and unclean, but others of the brethren believed it was a thing of the past.


In 1911, Editor Jacob Brinkerhoff stated that "on the subject of Food we must be lenient with those who do not see the matter as we do."


Yet in the 1929 General Conference at Stanberry, it was resolved that ministers teach against the eating of unclean meats, as well as tobacco.


As far as tobacco is concerned, Cranmer's associates were labeled by Seventh Day Adventists as tobacco users. But S.C. Hancock of the Church of the Firstborn in the East said that his people regarded tobacco as a "dirty, loathesome, expensive, unhealthy practice, and from which every disciple of Christ should abstain." John Reed, one of Cranmer's leading associates, reportedly quit the habit in late 1864.


In 1928, an unnamed man from Arkansas wrote in the Advocate saying that some Church of God brethren said they were too poor to pay tithes, yet they were heavy tobacco users. Bugger replied that they were not really in the church if they did so, for "The Church of God stands on record opposing the use of tobacco in every form, and our ministry is constantly teaching the people their duty along this line."


Passover and Meats were to be two key issues which were to precipitate- division in the Church of God in 1933.


The Jew and Israel


The "Age to Come" doctrine held to by the Church of God consists of the belief that the prophecies relating to the regathering of Israel in conjunction with the Second Coming of Christ apply to literal Israel rather than spiritual Israel. But who is literal Israel?


In 1861, Elder R. V. Lyon  (mentioned by Dugger's history as a Church of God minister) wrote a pamphlet entitled, "The Scattering and Restoration of Israel."  In it he stated that in conjunction with the return of Christ, Judah and the Ten-tribed House of Israel would be regathered. They are spoken of as separate entities, and are the "two sticks" to be rejoined as foretold in the prophecy of Ezekiel 37:15-28. Lyon reported that this prophecy was written 134 years after the Ten Tribes went into captivity, and they were never brought back to their land, were never united with Judah. He neglected to report where they are today, though.


A 1903 issue of the Advocate contains a statement by S.S. Davison that "The  [re] turn of the Jews to the land of Palestine is a sure sign and forerunner" that Christ is soon coming."

OF  COURSE  HE  WAS  WRONG  AND  DID  NOT  REALLY  UNDERSTAND  WHY  THE  JEWS  WERE  NOW  RETURNING,  ESPECIALLY  AFTER  1917  -  Keith Hunt


The capture of Jerusalem from the Turks by General Allenby In 1917 is especially noted as hastening the return of the Jew to Israel. In 1923 and later years, a regular section in the Advocate was devoted to "Zion News," and the regathering of the Jews. Note was made in 1923 that "27,000 Jews entered Palestine since 1918." In 1924, columns entitled "Palestine From Day to Day" noted further progress along this line.


Dugger and the Church of God in general have believed that the Jews are the only ones that fulfill prophecies relating to the regathering of Israel.


Merritt Dickinson and Anglo-Israelism


But besides R. V. Lyon, another Church of God minister held to the conviction that the Jews were separate from the Ten Tribes of the House of Israel. In December, 1919, Merritt Dickinson of Longdate, Oklahoma, wrote a series of articles in the Advocate, also printed into a tract, entitled "The Final Gathering of the Children of Israel." Only the concluding article has thus far been located.


Dickinson stated in the article that England is Ephraim and America is Manesseh, and presumably the rest of the lost Ten Tribes are in northwestern Europe. He stated that the Ten Lost Tribes were scattered as well as Judea, the Jew, and will just as certainly be gathered. His article concluded by stating that Advocate readers could write to the editor for a free supply of tracts on "The Final Gathering of the Children of Israel," for distribution.


Born about 1864 in Ohio, Merritt Dickinson as a boy moved with his his family to Michigan, where they lived near Saginaw. In 1883 at the age of 19, Merritt married Ida Nichols (possibly the daughter of J.H. Nichols), a colporteur that worked under Ellen G. White. Merritt and his brother Leroy knew the Whites' personally, and were practically next door neighbors for a while, but reportedly never went along with the Seventh Day Adventists. They were part of the Church of God in Michigan, and attended conferences in White Cloud.   Campmeetings those days lasted 8-10 days. Interestingly, some of the Dickinson's relatives were said to have been Seventh Day Baptists. And while in Michigan, Leroy and Merritt kept the Passover, but on Nisan 15.


Through self-study, Merritt Dickinson came to believe in Anglo-Israelism. He reportedly read the book, Judah's Sceptre and Joseph's Birthright. Leroy, Merritt and their mother went to Jerusalem for three years, 1898-1900, and along the trip, stopped off at London and saw the Stone of Scone. After the trip they settled in Oklahoma. By now, they were observing the Sabbath by themselves.


By 1912, Merritt was preaching, holding meetings in Oklahoma. It was that year that A.N. Dugger had a street conversation with Merritt as recalled by his niece.   Dugger stated:  "You can preach about that (Anglo-Israelism) if you want to, and there may be some truth to it; but you can't get anywhere with the people while preaching that."


Merritt Dickinson replied: "You admit it is the truth, but you won't preach it."  This discouraged Dickinson about the Church of God. He later turned down ordination and a minister's license, because he refused to be tied down and muzzled. Yet in the General Conference Report on Ministers in 1923, M.N. Dickinson is listed as an ordained, recognized and credentialed minister, next to A.N. Dugger.


In 1913, Elder M. W. Unzicker began meetings at White Horse school house on June 1 at the request of Dickinson. Bad weather plagued the meeting, and Dickinson helped conduct a meeting also.


Elder L.O. Van Nostrand has been said to have typed the manuscript of Merritt Dickinsons tract on Anglo-Israel, and was listed as co-author in the tract when published at Stanberry.


Merritt Dickinson was not the only one in the Church of God that believed in Anglo-Israelism. R.K. Walker, Frank Walker, S.S. Davison, and Roy Davison were prominent Church of God ministers holding similar views. The issue was to be another question that tended to divide the Church of God, and continued to be held by some who stayed in the church.

…………………


I  FIND  IT  STRANGE  THAT  A  TOPIC  THAT  HAS  NOTHING  TO  DO  WITH  HOW  YOU  LIVE  TOWARDS  OTHER  PEOPLE;  HOW  YOU  CONDUCT  YOUR  BUSINESS;  ONLY  TO  DO  WITH  A  BELIEF  IN  THE  MIND,  AND  HOW  IT  EFFECTS  BIBLE  PROPHECY  UNDERSTANDING,  SHOULD  BE  OFTEN  SO  STRONGLY  OBJECTED  TO  BY  SOME  INDIVIDUALS  AND  SOME  CHURCH  GROUPS.


I  ALSO  FIND  IT  STRANGE  THAT  JUST  ABOUT  EVERY  NATION  ON  EARTH,  CAN  TRACE  THEIR  HISTORY,  BUT  SOME  OF  THE  NATIONS  OF  WESTERN  EUROPE,  AND  THE  ENGLISH  NATIONS,  JUST  DO  NOT  SEEM  TO  KNOW  WHERE  THEY  ORIGINALLY  COME  FROM.  IT  IS  TRUE  SOME  HISTORIANS  TRACE  THE  ANGLO-SAXON-CELTIC  PEOPLE  BACK  TO  ABOUT  800  B.C.  AND  THE  AREA  OF  THE  BLACK  SEA,  BUT  THEN  THEY  ADMIT  THEY  DO  NOT  KNOW  WHERE  THE  CELTS  AND  ANGLO-SAXON  PEOPLES  WERE  BEFORE  THAT  TIME.  THEY  ADMIT  THAT  THOSE  PEOPLE  AND  RELATED  ONES  LIKE  THE  GAULS  AND  GERMAN  TRIBES,  CAME  FROM  THE  EAST  AND  MOVED  ACROSS  EUROPE  OVER  MANY  CENTURIES.


CRAIG  WHITE  OF  AUSTRALIA  HAS  RESEARCH  FOR  YEARS  THE  ORIGIN  OF  THE  NATIONS  OF  THE  WORLD.  YOU  CAN  GET  HIS  LARGE  IN-DEPTH  BOOK  "ORIGIN  OF  NATIONS"  FROM  AMAZON.COM


THIS  IS  ALSO  INTERESTING.  SOME  10  OR  MORE  YEARS  AGO  I  HEARD  ABOUT  A  ONE  TIME  MINISTER  WITH  THE  WORLDWIDE  CHURCH  OF  GOD,  TALKING  TO  ANOTHER  "HISTORY  PHD"  TEACHER  FROM  AMBASSADOR   COLLEGE  [A  COLLEGE  OWNED  BY  THE  WORLDWIDE  CHURCH  OF  GOD]  AND  WAS  ASKED,  "DO  YOU  STILL  BELIEVE  IN  ANGLO-SAXON-CELTIC- ISRAEL  TEACHING?"  THE  ANSWER  FROM  THE  PHD  HISTORY  PROFESSOR  WAS,  "EVEN  MORE  SO  TODAY  THAN  BEFORE."


THAT  SPEAKS  VOLUMES!!!


Keith Hunt