Who Were Willie and Rose Edwards?
Rose Edward’s Letter to Macmillers, Denver, CO, November 23, 1935
Rose Edward’s Letter to Dagmar Berglind, Denver, CO, May 27, 1935
W. & Rose Edwards Letter to Fountains, Canada, October 1, 1936 - THE COVER-UP
Rose & W. Edwards Letter to Fountains, October 18, 1937
Minnie Skerritt's Letter to Lovell Bakers, Denver, CO, May 4, 1939
Willie Edwards’ Letter to Baltimore Friends, July 6, 1941
Willie Edwards Letter to Caseys, New Zealand, December 20, 1942
Willie Edward's Letter to Wm. Irvine, April 29, 1944
Letter to President Kennedy written by Mrs. Floy Miller of Ontario, Canada, April 15, 1963
Dave Dempster's Letter to Sydney Morning Herald (Australia)
Ed Steven’s Letter to Chapmans, Redlands, CA, December 25, 1931
Ed Cooney's Letter to Wm. Irvine, March 3, 1924
Barbara James' Letter to Impartial Reporter Newspaper, November 13, 1997
Lew Fountain's Letter to Dear Friends, July 5, 1998
Who Were Willie and Rose Edwards?In late December 1937, Irvine, age 75, devised a new system for distributing his correspondence. He began sending a letter to "Edwards & Co." every seven to ten days, explaining, "In 1938, I felt it was better to write one letter for all and entrusted Willie Edwards to circulate it, which proved useful in one sense, for it saved me; for it was hard at 75 to do what I had been doing" (to Madeline Dunbar, Nov. 26, 1945, TTT).
Willie Edwards had someone type Irvine's handwritten letters with several carbon copies. He then circulated the copies with a personal cover letter sometimes addressed to "Our Dear Friends in William Irvine." Frequently, he reverently referred to Irvine as "Our Leader," stating, for instance, "Surely it would make us tremble if we didn't have a Leader and Commander whose every word is our law and guide."
Edwards encouraged followers to give Irvine's letters far more than a cursory reading. "For if we believe he [Irvine] has the mind of God, then it is only right that we take his words as a voice from Heaven" (to Minnie Skerritt, Sept. 4, 1942, in author's possession). The two wisest men in history were Solomon and Irvine, according to the Irvinites .
In 1938, at Irvine's suggestion, Willie and Rose Edwards began traveling to meet with other Irvinites in the US and Canada , interpreting Irvine's letters to his followers. Irvine was pleased, "My heart is glad today to see that they [Edwards] are able to supply what I often felt was beyond the power of my pen"(to Ritzmans, Feb. 13, 1940, in author's possession).
Accepted as Irvine's right-hand man, the Irvinites looked up to and appreciated the Edwards. A grateful follower expressed, "Even after Mr. Irvine's letters, we wouldn't of understood without Edwards to show us." Much obliged, another exclaimed, "So we are more and more thankful for Willie and Rose's life to help us and being able and willing to guide us in all that was so utterly impossible to understand by our own reading of Book and letters."
Both Willie and Rose Edwards were Alpha Workers who married in 1916 and left the Work. They resided in Berkeley, California, and were in the grocery business. In April 1919, the Edwards visited Irvine in Los Angeles and heard for the first time his Omega Message in person. For believing and accepting it, there were serious repercussions; Jack Carroll excommunicated them. In turn, they were some of Irvine's earliest, most faithful, ardent witnesses of his Omega Message—until Irvine cut them off. Rose died from cancer on October 19, 1941, and was buried in Napa, California.
From what can be gleaned from Irvine's letters, in mid-1945, Willie Edwards started writing and distributing his own letters, arranging marriages and divorces and perhaps attempting to become the American leader of the Omega Message. When this came to Irvine's attention, he sent some scathing letters to Edwards, notified others that Edwards no longer had his approval and ceased corresponding with him. For the two remaining years of his life, Irvine returned to writing individual letters to correspondents.
The 1940 Census shows Edwards, age 61, with two of his three children, Anna and John, living in Maricopa, Arizona. He died December 15, 1973, in Prescott, Arizona. Nothing further is known about Edwards' life or activities after he and Irvine parted ways.
Dear President and Mrs. Kennedy:
I have been thinking for some time of writing to you. This won't be the kind of a letter that you would be liable to get, but if you had a message of great importance to people, I'm sure you would endeavor to give it to them, and so this is why I want to write to you.
To begin with, I want to say I am not a Communist or anything like that, but an honest, loyal Canadian citizen and respect you as the U.S.A. President. The world today, as you well know, has troubles and difficulties of all kinds, and is getting worse and will continue to do so, as we are living in the age of these things.
We've had a wonderful man who lived in this Century; truly a Man of God. (Wm. Irvine). He preached in different countries for a number of years, as Jesus did. He didn't ask for money or anything for himself. Like Jesus and the Disciples did, he gave his all for what he knew was God's will. In 1914 he knew there was a change came. It was the beginning of sorrows on the earth, or the beginning of the end. So he knew by God revealing His Will to him, that he was to go to Jerusalem as God's Prophet would be in Jerusalem, and while there, he did what he could to talk to people, and also to keep in touch with his friends by letter, and God was with him and revealing the Scriptures to him.
The Bible tells the Prophesys were sealed until the time of the end, but now God had a man with His Spirit who could open up these to the people. You know it says in Rev. 1: 3, "Blessed is he that readeth and they that hear the words of his Prophecy etc..." Showing that there was to be a Reader, also they who would hear. God never did forsake His people, and so when times were dark, He sent a Man with Light to show His people what was right.
It would take a large book to tell you all he told us, but one part that is very important is the eleventh chapter of Rev.; It tells there of 2 Witnesses who will come to the city where our Lord was crucified (Jerusalem). These men are to be raised from the dead. They are men of God, and will prophecy at Jerusalem for 1260 days; about 3 1/2 years. They'll have power to take life or give it, as they see fit. It says in 6th Ver. "These have power to shut heaven that it rain not in the days of their prophecy, and have power overwaters to turn them to blood, and to smite the earth with all plagues as often as they will." So you can realize the seriousness of this and by what we can get from the news, we realize this time is very close at hand; could be in '63 yet.
These two men of God will be the Reader and Writer of the Book of Revelation. Wm. Irvine was the Reader; the beloved Disciple John of the Gospels was the Writer while he was on the Isle of Patmos, where he was banished a while before his death at Jerusalem. Jesus, or an Angel appeared to him and told him what would come to pass, and to write it, so that we would have the light we have today. The Angel also told him, he would prophecy again before many peoples and nations and tongues and kings. Rev.10:11v. which he will do when he comes. So the Two Witnesses will be William and John.
The world is full of religion of all kinds, full of men's ideas of how to please God or themselves, but God isn't interested in any of it. He will destroy it all from the earth; the whole Religious, Political and Educated world, saving those who believe and accept His Two Witnesses, just as in the days of Noah.
Noah believed God and witnessed to the people and built the ark as God instructed him to, and when they wouldn't listen to Noah, God sent the flood and so 80 Million were destroyed. So this time it will be much the same, only not by water, but by war, famine, pestilence and plagues.
Out of love and mercy I have tried to tell you enough to give you and whom it may concern a chance. I can't say much more. There'll be plenty of activity in the Middle East, as God prepares the Holy Land for His people, His Bride, His New Jerusalem.
I don't expect you will want to believe the things I have tried to tell you, but as time goes on, and if God spares your life, you'll see these things unfold before your eyes in the news.
This letter is open to anyone you care to show it to.
Yours humbly and sincerely,
Mrs. Floy Miller
NOTE about the author of this letter: Floy Miller followed William from 1906 until her death in 1971. She lived in a suberb about 5 miles outside of Saint Catherines, Ontario, Canada. Since she couldn't get out and meet people during her last few years, she began to write to bigshots. President Kennedy sent her a handwritten personal reply. He did not understand what she had written, but thanked her for writing him. Another follower believes the President answered her because she was a Canadian citizen, and that his assassination was God's answer to him. She was likely following this advice: "so use all you have and are for Him, and you will find very much to cheer and comfort. And if you can't get out, you can at least write a letter every day to some of the many big bugs who have never heard, and don't and won't care. But your words will come back to them, for every day writes them deeper into every heart and life - no matter how hard their hearts and perverse their minds." (December 1, 1929 Letter to Lees)
Dave Dempster's Letter
To: Editor of "Sydney Morning Herald"
No Date (was written after 1947, as he mentions Wm. Irvine's death)
EXPLANATION by Dave Dempster: "The controversy arose at the regular
meeting of the N.S.A. Council of Churches when some of the clergy reported
the activities of the Testimony people or “Go-Preachers” gathering in some
of their members. Archdeacon Hammond was deputed to send a warning message
to the S. M. Herald: It appeared very conspicuously on the
main page. A Testimony follower replied upholding their views, under
the non de plume, Fairminded. You can readily follow the rest
of what happened. I didn't feel like letting them get away with their
Perhaps you will allow me space to reply to two letters that appeared in "Herald" newspaper on the 10th & 17th December by Archdeacon Hammond and Fairminded respectively. I am in no way interested in their antagonistic attitude towards each other RE their religious beliefs; my one and only reason for writing is because the name of William Irvine has been besmirched in both letters by writers concerned.
Let me deal with Archdeacon Hammond's letter first. He refers to William Irvine as the founder of the “Go Preachers” and speaks of him as being a mystic hailing from Kilsyth, Scotland and because of his humble origin and freedom from Ecclesiastical taint passes him off as being unworthy of a second thought. But such is typical of the Pharisee strain down through the pages of history; for we are reminded in Genesis 3 verse 15 that the serpent would bruise the heel of the woman seed (attack her walk), whereas she would bruise the serpent's head (storehouse of false religious knowledge).
I would remind Archdeacon Hammond that none of God's true servants ever wore a Dog Collar, nor did they ever have to go into a theological college to have their head stuffed with theology to fit them to preach about the Son of God, who, as a preacher had no place to lay His head; and in Isaiah 53 is likened to a ‘root out of a dry ground,’ a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief, who made His grave with the wicked and with the rich in His death, because He had done no violence neither was any deceit in His mouth. Quite a disparity that becomes increasingly glaring the more we view the contrast provided in all the reverend gentlemen we see everywhere around us these days. So, as just a very ordinary working man, I would advise the Archdeacon and his understudies who represent the N.S.W. Council of Churches, to take stock of themselves and cease playing the part of their predecessors whom Jesus so severely castigates in Matthew 23. That's that!
Now to my second friend, Fairminded. I like his choice of a nom de plume; it is in keeping with his Pharisee profession, in as much as he perpetrates an infamous, cruel and wicked lie in stating that William Irvine became mentally unbalanced in the latter part of his life. I doubt whether Fairminded, despite the glibness of his effort, ever met William Irvine in the course of his life time; this I am led to surmise from his opening remarks and considering that the man he brands as insane severed his connection with the so called "Go Preachers" in 1914, and if my memory serves me aright, he hadn't visited Australia for about two years previous to that, making a total of 44 years.
If the truth were known, it is very feasible that Fairminded never wrote the letter at all; most probably it was written by one of the Boys (present day Go-Preachers) who ‘crack the whip,’ and he put his name to it to comply with the “Herald” newspaper requirements for publishing same. In making the above statement, it is incumbent that I should prove my words which I will now proceed to do, for, as Bobby Burns said, “Facts are chiels that winna ding and dawinna be disputit.”
I first met William Irvine and became his friend 49 years ago: We traveled as passengers on the one time S.S. Moana, an old Red Route Line boat that plied between Sydney and Vancouver. Both of us were bound for New Zealand, however I spent some days in Sydney, but he crossed over there without delay, as he was hastening to attend a convention. I met him later in N. Z., and again in Queensland, but in 1918 he went from U.S.A. to Jerusalem, Palestine and lived there until he died in 1947, at the grand old age of 86, retaining all his faculties to the end. And I corresponded with him all through our 49 years friendship.
May I here and now give a fleeting glance at the man's strong character? Of a poor family, he commenced to work at 8 years of age; and readers will readily agree that his opportunity to acquire schooling was indeed scanty, but, despite such obstacles, in his twenties he was manager of a large coal mine in the West of Scotland, with a thousand men under his control. One need have no stretch of imagination to come to the conclusion that men of such caliber don't--to use a common Aussy phrase—“GO off their rocker,” readily; rather does the healthy up-hill struggle develop in them the best traits in human character, mellowing with increasing years and added experience, giving them a fuller insight into life and all that pertains to it.
In conclusion, may I add that Archdeacon Hammond, Fairminded and their supporters haven't yet heard the last of William Irvine, for, along with the apostle John, he has to come back as one of the Two Witnesses of Revelation 11, when both of them will witness for 1,260 days in preparing the way for the Lord's coming. Many religious people on being informed thus have almost lifted up their hands in holy horror at the mere suggestion, yet they profess to believe The Book; and when reminded that Enoch and Elijah never saw death, but were translated, they seem disagreeably surprised. Well, they just never thought of that: Such a lot of people there are that can only see through their Glass Eye! The work of the Two Witnesses is clearly given in Revelation 11. They have power to shut the heavens that it rain not in the days of their prophecy and have power over waters to turn them to blood and to smite the earth with all plagues as often as they will.
I can hear some readers of these words asking for precedent, of which the world is so fond. Well Elijah, the Tishbite, (1st Kings, Chapter 17) shut the heavens for 3-1/2 years in King Ahab's time; and Moses put on the plagues in Egypt, also turning the waters of the rivers to blood; and for good measure, Revelation 16, verse 6 makes good reading. At the end of their witness, they will be killed and their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city where also our Lord was crucified, and will remain unburied for 3-1/2 days. But when they all have had their say and do, a great voice from heaven was heard saying, “Come up hither,” and they ascended up to heaven in a cloud and their enemies beheld them, while a quake in the temple area kills 7,000 men and destroys a tenth part of the city, just to remind them that God is on the job.
The Two Witnesses ascend to heaven to get the place of honor at the right and left hand of Jesus until He comes back to reign. Matthew 20 tells us that Zebedee's wife requested of Jesus this honor for her two sons James and John, but was told it was not His to give, but it shall be given to them whom it is prepared of my Father. John will be one of the two thus honored; and a singular thing of note in John's life is that he was the only one of the twelve disciples who did not die the death of a martyr; he was prisoner in the Isle of Patmos for the name and testimony of Jesus Christ, and sent the Revelation message out in the form of letters to the various churches, the wording of which caused the authorities who couldn't understand--not having the Spirit--to conclude, like our friend Fairminded, that his mind was unbalanced, so they put it down to his senility as an old man who was feeble and harmless; consequently they released him, and history records that he returned to Ephesus, where he died a natural death among a few friends, at the age of 96 years.
Another seeming peculiar event in John's life marks him out as one of the Two Witnesses; after Jesus had risen from the dead and prior to his ascending up to heaven, the 21st chapter of John informs us that he appeared the third time to His disciples; and (verses 18-23) in giving Peter an inkling of what lay ahead of him regarding his martyrdom, had Peter all at sea as to what it meant at that time. Not knowing what the Lord was driving at; in his embarrassment Peter turned about and seeing the disciple whom Jesus loved (John) he said to Jesus, “Lord and what shall this man do?” Jesus saith unto him, “If I will that he tarry till I come what is that to thee? Follow thou me.” It goes on to say that this saying went abroad among the brethren that that disciple should not die. What the Lord really meant to convey was that John was to delay his martyrdom till just before Jesus comes, as one of the Two Witnesses of Revelation 11. Further convincing proof can be gleaned from verses 10-11 of Revelation 10: John took the little book out of the angel's hand and ate it up; it was sweet in his mouth, but it made his belly bitter, and the angel said to him, “Thou must prophecy again before many peoples and nations and tongues and kings.” He hasn't fulfilled that prophecy so far, but will do so from Jerusalem, during the 1,260 days aforesaid mentioned.
John, God's choice, was the writer of Revelation, and The Book was to be sealed until the time of the end; it stands to reason that when the time came to reveal and fulfill it, God would raise up a Prophet as the Reader; so Writer and Reader are very clearly distinguished. This is where William Irvine comes in as the Reader. Verse 3 of Revelation 1 says, “Blessed is he that readeth and they that hear the words of this prophecy and keep those things which are written therein: For the time is at hand.”
I have often heard it said--and seen evidence of it also--that William Irvine was a dangerous man; readers caring to get the drift of my meaning will have full satisfaction in this respect, if they twin up Isaiah 41 and read verses 10-11. It was on the strength of that chapter that he went out to preach when God called him. The opening verses show that the early prophets came from the East; verses 2-4 “Who raised up the righteous man from the East, called him to his foot, gave the nations before him and made him rule over kings? I the Lord, the first, and with the 1ast: I am he.” But verse 25 shows the Last Prophet would come from the North. “I have raised up one from the north and he shall come: From the rising of the sun shall he call upon my name: And he shall come upon princes as upon mortar and as the potter treadeth clay.”
It becomes so easy for the smug religious Pharisees (I haven't a word of condemnation with which to accuse the open sinner who knows he isn't what he should be and admits it. Jesus told the self-righteous Pharisees who are always thanking God, because they are not like other men are, when they brought the woman who was a victim of circumstances before Him, to cast the first stone he who was without sin; but they all slunk away as they always do. "Woman where are those thine accusers? Hath no man condemned thee?" She answered, “No man, Lord.” And Jesus, a manly and merciful man said, “Neither do I condemn thee: Go and sin no more”) to be pleased with themselves and so ever ready to show the wrong spirit, even where and when consideration and kindness is much needed. The rich man of the parable in Luke 16, clothed in purple and fine linen and who fared sumptuously every day, indicates a class who are easily recognized by their special trimmings, as seen also in Matthew 23 verses 5-7; on the other hand--type of the true servant--is described as a beggar by comparison and was full of sores, however the rich man who knew it all--and more, got the greatest surprise of his lifetime when be crossed the fixed gulf of ‘no return’ and passed to the land where there are no shadows.
P.S. Editor's printed note, accompanying returned letter: The Editor of the “Sydney Morning Herald” thanks you for submitting attached contribution, but regrets that he is unable to make use of it.
NOTE by Dave Dempster:
Like Pilate, he knew it was the truth, but had to consider his Masters and his job. Pilate said: I find no fault in this man, for as we see in Matthew 27 verse 18, Mark 15:v 10 and Luke 23 v 4, he knew they had delivered Jesus for envy. When Pilate went as far as he could go humanly, to set the Lord free, the holy rabble clinched it for him by saying, “If you let this man go, you are not the friend of Caesar,” so he took the easy way out by washing his hands.
The controversy arose at the regular meeting of the N.S.A. Council of Churches when some of the clergy reported the activities of the Testimony people or “Go-Preachers” gathering in some of their members. Archdeacon Hammond was deputed to send a warning message to the S.M. Herald: It appeared very conspicuously on the main page. A Testimony follower replied upholding their views, under the non de plume, Fairminded. You can readily follow the rest of what happened. I didn't feel like letting them get away with their religious lies.
Ed Steven’s Letter To: Chapmans, Redlands, Calif.
December 25, 1931
Dear Harold and Marion:
Received your letter and enclosed duplicate of that prophet. Thanks for the information. I feel I must write my impressions, & hope you will “check up” on what I wish to say. Am grieved that you believe this man, and that you study HIS prophecies instead of the MORE SURE word of prophecy, whereunto ye do well that ye take heed as unto a LIGHT that shineth in a dark place until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts, knowing this, that no prophecy of the Scriptures is of any private interpretations, for the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man, but Holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost, 2n Peter 1: 19-21. Paul in Col. 1:25, says it was given unto him to fulfill or complete the word of God for this dispensation (as a canon), And Rev. 22:18-19 a curse is added, or pronounced on any one who adds, or subtracts too or from the word of God (our Bible) Isa. 8: 20, says “To the law and to the testimony, if they speak not according to THIS WORD it is because there is NO LIGHT IN THEM.”
2nd John 9: “Whoso abideth not in the doctrine of God, HATH NOT GOD.” 1st John 4: 1, “Beloved BELIEVE NOT every spirit (or prophet), but try the spirits (prophets) whether they be of God, BECAUSE many false prophets (prophet Irvine) and shall show great signs and wonders; in as much that if it were possible the very elect shall be deceived, wherefore if they shall say unto you, behold He is in the desert, go not forth; behold He is in the secret chambers (Mt. Carmel) BELIEVE IT NOT.”
So much, my friends, for Scriptural warnings. Now I’d like to show where he (Irvine), and God’s plain word differ. It is so natural to swallow the sensational instead of the written word. As the age winds up there is to be an increase of counterfeiting God’s things. In the first place the Bible says there is only ONE SON OF MAN; the God Man Christ Jesus. Remember God’s Revelation to Man in the Bible is COMPLETE since 1900 years ago. That’s why Heaven has been silent since, because no more Revelation was necessary for us. We walk by faith and not by sight, 2 Cor. 5:7, When a “Son of man on earth” is not mentioned believe it not. It pleased God to give Israel signs and Prophets. So when the church is caught up, the Jews (as a Jew recently said) will believe the New Testament, and Christ, in a body because of this great event. Then they will enter the great Tribulation (not us), and God will give them 2 prophets witnessing in Jerusalem. Who the witnesses are can only be ascertained by compared Zech. 4: 2-3-4- and Rev. 11:3-4, they have been standing before God in heaven.
Surely Irvine can’t claim this, and it looks from Rev. 10:11- that John maybe one of them, but in the R.V.M. ( revised version Manuscript) and the original this reads “ thou must prophesy again CONCERNING (or about) many people, and nations and tongues and Kings (not before) .
John was one of the Apostles, and Jesus said that the 12 Apostles are yet to sit on 12 Thrones judging the 12 tribes of Israel, who will be supreme in the earth. Heb. 9:27- says it was appointed unto men to DIE ONCE. Therefore we may conclude that these two witnesses of Rev. 11: MAY BE ENOCH AND ELIJAH, the only 2 men’ ever translated. Notice in verse 6, the characteristics of Elijah, while on earth, in keeping back rain, and smiting Jordan in olden times.
As for sheep and goats Irvine does not rightly divide here. Matt. 25: 33-46, explains that only Christ does the separating, and this only happens after His visible return. The sheep are not the ones who believe Irvine, but the ones who believe the Jewish Missionaries AFTER the rapture of the Church, concerning the coming King Christ, and His King of 1000 years. The goats are the ones who did not believe this, and Christ destroys them by the breath of His mouth. Isa. 11: 4, What a slaughter this will be then, (not now) in suicides etc. ,can be seen from reading Jer. 25: 30-33 and Isa. 13: 9-11.
The marks of the beast has not yet been revealed in Scripture, which is our only guide; neither who the Anti-Christ is, for in 2nd Thes. 2: 3, it is stated that he wont be revealed until after the Holy Spirit in the Church is taken up- verse 7. The characteristics of Anti-Christ are described in vs. 4, and Dan. 2: 36- 45. I for one am going to watch Adolph Hitler. He seems to have some of the marks of the Anti-Christ, from what I have recently read, and hear about him. We won’t know for sure who it is, for we are going up first, so the more anyone resembles Anti-Christ these days, the sooner we are going to get our great thrill and everlasting joy, I wonder if he has a middle name of 6 letters. Adolph is 6 letters, and Hitler is 6 letters. Rev. says Anti-Christ number will be 666. Hitler is speaking great things of what HE would do if he had power. He is a bachelor from Austria, and has a large army ready. He talks of making guilotines (sic) that those who will not obey ( ) have their heads roll in the sand. I don’t say he will be anyb--- but he will bear watching. The Anti-Christ no doubt exists and (--- ) ably busying his brain with the worlds problems. Hitler is said to be busy day and night.
This man Irvine is probably another deluded old man, and since our Bible says visions and Revelations of the Lord are ceased during the church dispensation, he is evidently possessed of a counterfeiting (d---)
2nd Thess. 2:11- says God will send strong delusion that they may believe a lie (or literally the liar). A great xtian teacher in India named Sade (?) Singh was lad astray by another old man living in the Himalaya Mts. Who claimed visions and revelations and what not. No! Gods prophets are not to be egotistical, seeking great claims for themselves. That comes from the Father of pride, Satan who tries to disguise himself in humanity. In these dangerous last days we need to cling closer and closer “thus saith the scriptures”, and so study them as our defence(sic), as Jesus did when tempted by Satan.
We are having a happy Xmas. My sister sent us money and presents. How privileged it is to depend on God for all our needs. Our monthly bills are just about paid for this month. Farnworth and I are raising an 8 room house 3 ft., and putting cement foundations under it. Have $65.00 street assessments, $30.00 taxes and doctor bills to pay soon.
Please send us all you can about Irvine. We want to know what is going on.
The Impartial Reporter Newspaper
RE: William Irvine
I am writing in regards to your recent series of letters regarding the Two By Two Church and The Cooneyite Sect, of which Mr. William Irvine was a founder.
My intent is not to debate or dispute doctrine. It is only to make people aware that after Mr. Irvine’s separation from, what was then known as the Testimony, (also known as the Truth) in 1914, he went on with his work.
My name is Barbara James; I’m a present day follower of William Irvine.
In 1897, William Irvine founded the scriptural doctrine of the Testimony based on what Jesus gave in the New Testament—Jesus as the Way, Truth and Life. It was Mr. Irvine’s work as the Alpha Prophet for the beginning of the Last Days, spoken of in Deut. 18:18 & 19; the Man like unto Moses, a human man of the people; a spiritual Jew, chosen by God. In the early years, Mr. Irvine, George Walker, Eddie Cooney, Jack Carroll, and Irvine Wier were close friends, and together they formed the beginnings of the “church” that, by order of succession, evolved into the Two by Two Church.
In later years, Mr. Walker and Mr. Cooney both separated from the Testimony and founded splinter groups. Virtually nothing of Mr. Irvine’s teachings remains in the doctrines or practices of either sect today.
Mr. Irvine began in the early years giving Matthew 10, then Matthew 23, condemning paid preachers, ministers, priests, etc., because Jesus spoke the words in Matthew 23 to the most scriptural, religious people of His day, who were the Jews. Matt 23 heralded the end of the Apostolic Age (Two by Two--New Testament witness) and was the Precursor of the Omega Message which would explain, or “signify,” the Book of Revelation that William received between 1914 and 1928.
Differences of opinion on doctrine and methodology began to rumble between William and the others as the Omega truth began to be revealed to him. In 1914, Jesus took the Throne, as in Revelation 4; World War I being the seal of God on this event. At that time, Mr. Irvine was given understanding of the Book of Jonah as it related to the Testimony, and, his “excommunication” from the Testimony in 1914 was the final proof to him that he was, indeed, the Prophet of Acts 3:20-23 fulfilling the Omega part of Moses prophecy for the End of days. The “split” came because Mr. Walker; Mr. Cooney; Mr. Carroll; Mr. Weir; and others, were unwilling to accept Mr. Irvine as Prophet for the Last Days, and were unwilling to give up apostolic practices, place, power, and livelihood as they would have had to do if they followed William into Omega. They repeated Korah, Dathan and Abiram’s words and stance as in Numbers 16.
In 1918, Mr. Irvine went to Jerusalem and from there, he wrote approximately half a million letters by hand, with fountain pen, to those whom he had witnessed the Omega to in the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Eastern and Western Canada, Eastern and Western USA and South Africa. These letters explain the Book of Revelation in detail; show it as an non-sequential outline; show how the Old and New Testaments provide the detail; and how the old Books remain historic, yet are prophetic for today.
Some people followed Mr. Irvine out of the Testimony and the grandchildren and great grandchildren of some of them, and their subsequent “spiritual children” (those they witnessed to) are still following William’s teachings today. I--and allow me to emphasize the ”I” part, for I speak only for myself--I call us “Message People.” William called us either “Little Ones" or his “friends.” (not The Friends). In all of his later letters; however, William always referred to the Testimony people who never had a chance to hear the Omega Message, and those who passed on before Revelation opened, as “The Saints.”
An apostolic age requires a Gospel or Good News. Gospel ceased when Judgment began in 1914; in other words, the heavens were closed. No more Gospel, no more “going out.” Revelation 1:3 Blessed is he that readeth (one reader-prophet) and they that hear. The Alpha Message, Jesus giving love, mercy, and forgiveness to the whole world was no longer. The Omega Message is Alpha to “they that hear” and Wrath to all who refuse.
The absence of a gospel also meant no going out two by two, for in Omega Days, there is no “going out;” every Witness is on his own. It’s one on one—witnessing to Wrath as opportunity to do so comes into one’s daily life. George Walker, Eddie Cooney, Jack Carroll, and all but a scant handful of The Testimony’s general population would not have it. They thought William was “wrong in the head,” or “had wrong spirit,” But so did the Hebrew Children think of Moses. It was too far a stretch for them to believe a God would speak to one “Man like unto Moses;” After all, in Moses day, He spoke to the whole “holy” congregation.
The Omega Message begins with Revelation 3:20, Jesus’ friendly invitation, inviting all people on the Earth to hear the Omega Message. He knocks at the door of your hearts, to tell you that He is on the Throne, judging the Earth. And that as war; famine; pestilence; plagues; drought; natural disasters; racialism; class war; economic failure occurs; and society as a whole decays, personal judgment will increase; that all that is happening on the Earth today is God and Jesus’ answer to what Satan and his have done to Him and His family, and everyone God and Jesus ever sent. Revelation is a warning, yes; but it is also meant to show a means of escape of all that is coming on the Earth.
Jesus’ Message to all peoples on the Earth today is in Revelation 17 & 18, Babylon and her ministry. In Rev. 18:4, Jesus tells us to “Come out of her, My People, that ye be not partakers of her sins,” showing that He does not consider all people His. In Verse 13, Jesus shows that the big business described in this chapter “Trades in the souls of men,” Which only organized religion does. Isaiah 55 shows that He gave us a Witness, Leader and Commander, that our thoughts are not His thoughts; nor our ways His ways. The message given there, is Hear and your soul shall live; refuse and perish.
Thanks for your attention,
Rose Edward’s Letter to MacMillers, Denver, Colo.
November 23, 1935
My dear Friends:
As Ruth Baker has asked me to write you a line, I will try to do so in order to let you know a little of the Message that we told them last Sept. We are very glad indeed to see the deliverance from the Devil’s power wrought in the Baker family, and to see them now with hope and comfort and living words in their mouths which will bring Life in turn to those who will hear and obey them. God is seeking to make people thirsty today, so if you are amongst that class of people, you will be glad to hear that Isa. 55 is fulfilled and true for this present time.
About 42 years ago, [=1893] God dealt with Mr. Irvine in Scotland, when he was a young man of 30 years, well up in his profession as a mining engineer, with a thousand men under him. After he had settled the matter that for himself he would serve the Lord, he began to feel God laying the needs of the world on his heart. As he read the Bible, he saw only one kind of preacher there. All whom God ever sent and spoke by, He sent in the same way as Jesus sent out His Apostles. Moses, Elijah, Isaiah, Jeremiah and all the prophets of the Old Testament were poor, humble men who said as they prophesied, “Thus said the Lord.” Jesus made it very plain as He called upon His disciples to see what they had, give it away in alms, and then follow Him in preaching the Gospel which He taught them.
In the Bible, Wm. Irvine saw only this manner of life for a preacher, but he saw no one living it in the world. So he made up his mind he would put God to the test, even if it cost him his life, and he resigned his position, sold what he had, made himself as poor as Jesus was when He said, “Foxes have holes, birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man hath no where to lay his head,” and in this manner he, Wm. Irvine, went forth to preach, which was the beginning of what we have called the Testimony. If there had been no Wm. Irvine, there would have been no Testimony, no matter how much you may be told to the contrary. As he went on, he met the different ones who became associated with him in the Alpha Message and work.
Mr. Irvine continued living, preaching and teaching according to the New Testament commission, not touching the Book of Revelation until 1914. He was the only man in the Testament [this should probably read Testimony] and in the world that was sensitive to God’s Spirit and felt the change that took place at that time, as God began the work of Judgment on the earth in the war, 1914-1918. Isa. 63:1-6 is good to read to show Jesus beginning to tread down the people in His anger because the Day of Vengeance has come, and also the time to redeem His own people. Wm. Irvine stopped preaching in 1914, but sought earnestly and diligently to know the mind and will of the Lord, and at the time of the Armistice, the Revelation was opened to him, so that he understood it as a program for the period of judgment at the end of the age before He (Jesus) should return to earth again.
Rev. 8 was the first chapter to open to him, which shows so plainly the World War, even to the number of ships destroyed, and the green grass and trees destroyed on the land. And the rest of the program followed as the Book opened up to him. Now we have had 21 years of judgment as given in Rev. and opened to us by the “Reader” spoken of in Rev. 1:3, as it says, “Blessed is He that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein.”
Jesus’ commission to His disciples in Matt. 28:19-20, was to continue to the “end of the Age” (correct translation), and when the end of the age came in 1914, the preparation for Jesus’ second coming, the time mentioned in Matt. 24 began. For those days there must need be A Man, as Moses had told them in Deut. 18:18, and as promised in Mal. 4:5, in Acts 3:22-23 and numerous other places.
Wm. Irvine’s work in forming the Testimony corresponded with Paul’s work in forming the 7 churches of Asia, mentioned in Rev. 1 and 2, when the Rev. was opened to him. He, of course, gave it first to those who had been friends in the Alpha Message, but most of them had become his enemies and refused to listen, hindered others of hearing. But to those who received the Omega Message, or reading of Rev., it has been the water of Life, for there is no other thing to give Life and Light from God in the world today. When the New Covenant given by Jesus came into effect, the Old Covenant of the law given by Moses passed away, as far as its ordinance of administration were concerned, and when the work of judgment began, the ordinances of the New Testimony passed away so that we have no more preachers going two-by-two, no more meetings and public prayer, or breaking of bread or baptism, but we have what is given in Revelation – a Reader – to give us what the Spirit of God and Jesus has to say from the Throne in Heaven, or the pure River of Water of Life as is given in Rev. 22:1, and all who are the seed of God on the earth today will hear and obey what the Reader has to say. “Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear,” Rev. 1:3, and instead of two-by-two preachers, every one who hears these things is to say COME to those they meet. See Rev. 22:17. And cursing is pronounced on anyone who is presumptuous as to go according to what they think or anyone else thinks, instead of going according to what God testifies in Rev. 22:19-19. Those who claim to serve God but refuse to hear and obey what God testifies in Rev. thru His sent Angel, the Reader, will have the plagues added to them (given in Rev. 16) or their part taken out of the Book of Life. So we could have no stronger warning than that, and it fits right into what Acts 3:22-23 says, “It shall come to pass that every soul which will not hear that prophet shall be destroyed from amongst the people.”
So for us, for you, for each and every individual on the earth today, there is but one hope for God’s life, favour, light and provision and protection, and that is to hear and obey His Message from the Throne given by the Reader and Prophet. All else on the earth today is only the darkness and confusion of Babylon, which is to be destroyed as shown in Rev. 17 and 18. We are now at the beginning of the great war mentioned in Rev. 9:15, which is to slay 1/3 part of men on the earth today, and will make the 1914-18 war seem as nothing and with it will come the drought of Rev. 11 and the plagues of Rev. 16, and only by having the protection of God will there by any chance to escape. It is the time of terrible trouble spoken of by Jesus in Matt. 14:21-22, and by Daniel 12:1. So we should all be sober and very much in earnest, and quick to recognize God’s claims and yield ourselves to them.
This may all seem quite strange and confusing to you at first, but if you seek honestly to hear and obey and tell it out to others, you will find His Spirit will come in to give you life and understanding, and make it all clear to you. The Bakers will be glad to share some of their letters from Wm. Irvine with you, and we will be glad to hear from you and help you if you desire.
Our very best wishes for you in having hearing ears.
Yours in Him,
Wm. and Rose Edwards
Rose Edward’s Letter to Dagmar Berglind, Fosterton, Sask, Canada
May 27, 1935
P.O. Box 39
My dear Mrs. Berglind and June,
Have thot several times of writing you, so now will put in a note with Anna’s letter. We have enjoyed reading some of your letters, and glad that you fight for victory over many difficulties. Some people have no difficulties and yet make no fight for the most valuable and precious privileges ever held out to any people. But the wicked shall not see nor understand; only the wise who hear and obey honestly will realize what the Message can mean to us. It’s a wonderful to not miss what we were created for and put on earth for, but to become “sharers” with Him for eternity, and have His hope and comfort and joy in the midst of the suffering that is necessary to conform us to the image of Jesus.
I heard Wm. Irvine’s Alpha message when I was nearly 19 years of age [=born in 1888]. Often have wondered how I would have stood the trials of life if I had not heard then; for I had taken life very seriously and suffered much in trying to know and do what pleased God. But Methodist darkness had left me one of the “victims,” so I rejoice that I found no help or satisfaction in it, and so was glad to hear that Jesus was our Pattern, and that the word of God was for us to go by today, just as much as when Jesus gave it. My parents and church friends thot it a crazy thing to believe such, but in spite of their advice and scandal and persecutions, the Lord gave me grace to stick to the right thing—the true light coming from Jesus manifesting his words in the flesh of Wm. Irvine, and brot to me by his friends.
I met Mr. Irvine first at meetings held in Chicago in 1907, and every year his Alpha message was plainer as we listened to him. But in 1914, he realized it was finished, when no one else knew what had happened. We visited him in Los Angeles in 1919 and heard the Omega (or Alpha AND Omega) Message, which was truly a much greater comfort and joy than the first had been. What a feast we have all had all these years since, while others wandered on in their darkness after refusing the clear waters of life. We have not known how to value it as we should, but do so more all along; and now as the day seems very close for Wm. Irvine to enter into his great work, we are so very glad and thankful to have a littler share with him and his Little Ones.
We have enjoyed June’s letters also, and shall be pleased to hear from both if you have opportunity to write us.
With love in Him,
NOTE: By 1919, Rose was married to William (Willie) Edwards. Rose died in November, 1941, age 52-3.
W. Edwards letter to Casey Family, N.Z.
December 20, 1942
My dear Ernie, Alice and all the Casey family:
It was great joy to receive your letter the other day, and the contents could not be better, in showing the marks which the seed of God has always borne in the world. Rose enjoyed our letters so much 20 years ago, and we talked much of you, and felt so bad when they stopped coming, but though Mr. Irvine never gave us very much news of how things were there, we sensed pretty well what you were passing through and how we wished you had known us better, and that we would be able to understand perfectly how and why everything came as it did. Strange that you, and all of us should start out honestly and sincerely, willing to make the greatest sacrifice that any one could make, and that we laboured and suffered and proved Him with us more than most, and then to see, as it were, that He took things in his own hands and changed the whole course of our lives. So that we became the filth of the Testimony world, and the off-scouring of all things, with a name and reputation which caused our Holy brethren to hold their noses, even at the mention of our name.
When Alphie McGowan was on trial with the head workers and judges, he asked if he might read a letter from me. Jack Carroll asked if he corresponded with me. He said, "Yes." “Well then,” he said, "We need no further witness, as that is enough."
Mr. Irvine writes when he crossed over in 1919, "The brethren on this side will be redoubling their efforts these days to convince themselves and others of their righteousness our wrongness. Your name is quite as nauseous to their clean white noses as mine is." We came from Montana to California in 1917, after getting the first comfort from Mr. Irvine's letters when he returned to California. We invited him up to Montana, and when he found he couldn't come, we decided to move to California. The Testimony would have nothing to do with us in Montana, but when we moved to California, they suspected we might get in touch with Mr. Irvine, so Jack (Carroll), Dave Christy and others made it their business to keep us in the Northern part by filling us with poison, and we were so simple that we actually thought they were honest, and we suffered for 2 years in their meetings and conventions, and the church was in our home until the very last Sunday, when we left the Northern part, just to get away from the wickedness that we had suffered so much from--not intending to see Mr. Irvine.
And strange, the very first place we stopped at, Jack's sister [probably May Carroll] had our address and sent us on a letter from Mr. Irvine. That letter convinced us that God was with him, so we wrote and asked him, if he would permit us to come to where he was, and if he would forgive us for our silence toward him those two years, we would come at once. And some day in Jerusalem or perhaps on the way there, we will give you a read of his reply, for we have it and all the letters he has written since.
As I look back, I am surprised at our ignorance and simplicity in thinking the Testimony workers were honest. We wrote May [Carroll, sister of Jack Carroll] and her companion that we were going to hear Mr. Irvine at once, and if they wanted to come, to meet us in Los Angeles. After the first meeting, I said to May, "What do you think now?" “Oh,” she says, "God is with him." “Well,” I said, "He is leaving for Jerusalem in a few days, and this is the only chance that Jack and Dave will have to hear him,” so we wired and wrote, urging them to come at once, that it was important that they hear the New Message from Revelation, etc. and that Mr. Irvine would be leaving in a few days.
He then found that there was a delay in the passport and wouldn't get away for several weeks. I had asked him before he found out about the delay if it would be possible for Rose and I to visit our Testimony friends in the Eastern States and give them understanding in these things? He said "Yes, and I would go to everyone of them," and that's what we thought of doing till we heard of the delay in Mr. Irvine's passport. Then we asked him, how would it be for he and May, Minnie and us to visit up the Coast and go into May's field and use the time till he was due to leave for Jerusalem.
We didn't even have a thought that they would be so wicked and dishonest as not to listen, but we only got to the first place when the telephone messages began to come in, that if Mr. Irvine came, they would close the door, and he would not be received or listened to. We didn’t know exactly just what was working or how this came about until we had visited a good many places, and one of Jack's letters was handed to us, which explained it fully. He said, “Wm. Irvine is the victim of devilish delusions from Revelation, and Willie Edwards and his wife, my own sister May, and her companion, have gone down and become victims of his delusions." They have started out to visit the churches, so to be forewarned is to be forearmed; close your ears and give them no place, etc."
We were then within 175 miles of where Jack was, and I knew what a scheming cowardly rascal he was, and that it was best to meet him face to face, for it was he who told me the lies about Mr. Irvine when we first came to California. So we made it through that night to Berkley where Jack was, and we listened to Mr. Irvine, and he for nearly two days, at the end of which Mr. Irvine said, "Jack, this thing is too big for you; but get 10 men of your own choice and have them come together and you take 3 hours and tell them all about my sins, my devilish delusions from Revelation, and I'll promise not interrupt, but give me one hour, and if those 10 men do not confess that God is in me and with me, and that I have God's Message, I'll give in, that I have had a chance." Jack's reply to that offer was, "I'll shut every door and close every ear against you and Willie Edwards and my own sister May, and any others with you." And as he said these words, May was just scared to death. I went over to her and said, "Don't let him frighten you." Her answer to me was in a low voice, "Oh, but you can sell groceries." We were then in the grocery business, showing that their thought is their bread. and butter.
Now before we left Berkley to hear Mr. Irvine, they were willing to have us in fellowship, and to use our home and our substance for the Gospel, so we could hardly understand why they would not even listen to us, seeing that we had done nothing from the time we were in fellowship, except listen to Mr. Irvine, so we were rejected; first, because of our sins; and next, because of our heresy, and have been for the past 23 years the worst, lowest and basest of people on the earth.
And so, we have been the better able to understand the Prophet Jesus and His Apostles who all made themselves of no reputation, and the end is not yet, for as he once wrote, "The Son of Man from earth rejected, and the man of Hell accepted, which will be the Anti-Christ." If we would have been glad to be rejected with Jesus, should we not be as glad to be rejected with the 2 witnesses, and he says, "Many of the seed of God went home with garments blackened, by the foul treatment they had received because of their sins.” So dear Rose is glad for it all today, and you will be glad one day, but let us not miss the joy that should be ours now, which should be our very strength in giving Him our best. I shall never forget what Mr. Irvine once said to me, “Let nothing close your mouth.”
With truest thanks and love from,
Madeline, Anna, John, Philip and Myself, W.E.
NOTE: Madeline was Willie Edwards second wife, after Rose died. Anna, John and Philip were Willie & Rose's three children.
W. & Rose Edwards Letter to Fountains, Canada
October 1, 1936
PO Box 485
My dear Fountains:
Thanks for all yours which we enjoyed and appreciated, except the part which told of Mrs. Fountain feeling so bad.
There is a man a few blocks from us here who claims he can cure Cancer. Has told me of many wonderful cures, one of a lady who had it for two years on one of her breasts, and other very remarkable cases. He would like to know how large it is and how long you have had it, says it is sure to do no harm if it doesn’t cure. Can make up a supply of the treatment and if you will try it, we will send it at once. He is humble honest and truthful and not a bit anxious to make profit out of it, says it will pain for probably 36 hours but will cure it in a few days.
Mr. Irvine has always encouraged us to do all we can, and as he once put it, “Carry on just as if nothing was happening.” The foolish could take a very wrong meaning out of this. Once he wrote us, “Work Vallejo the same as if you were going to be there a hundred years.” Those who have opened the door for Him to come in and sup, will have little time for anything else, only to plan, work, and live for the one thing, and all they are doing in material things is only what He said, “Occupy till I come.” And we may be sure that as we do this honestly and sincerely for His glory, that all things will work together for good. Wm. says, “If the hairs of our head are numbered, we may be sure that the tiniest of movements are all ordered by Him.” If our hearing and keeping the words of this prophecy makes us His “Blessed,” we know that the promises of the Book are ours.
You can see that his latest letters are all to strengthen our confidence and assurance during our watch and wait, that all that has taken place during the past 44 years has been ordered by God, making the finish of His Alpha work with the World War. And while he didn’t see then as he does today, he said, “There is some connection between the War in the Testimony and the War in France, and as sure as the Kaiser will come out of this War without his crown, I will come out with mine.” And what a crown.
They were so delighted to think he was gone so they might get the Vineyard. How well I remember G. W. [George Walker] telling me of their plans. Everything was going to be different. They would not even sing the old songs. Nothing that would bring back old memories, and he says “in two years, his name will be forgotten and new people will never know that such a man lived.” They didn't take God into consideration, for He had a new Message, a new River, for His prophet and was going to poison the old fountains and Rivers so that all who continued to drink, died and became the most blind wicked people on earth, proving that they heard the words but not the Spirit, and used them for their own selfish purpose, seeking their own, not the things that were Jesus Christ's.
And you can see how searching Mr. Irvine’s letters are today, as he sees the same thing in the Message, as the revealing of the foolish virgins, wicked and slothful servants takes place.
You will get a great deal out of the enclosed which was written to supply the need in these parts. We find we need to go over the letters many times with the Book and talk much with each other in the family over them, in order to get and make our own what the Spirit gives by his pen. And if all did more of this, there wouldn’t be any giving out of our own foolish mad rubbish, for from the beginning he has shown us the danger of our own thoughts and ways and that only what comes from the Throne by his pen is of any value.
I’m sure the wise will seek to let the Spirit express by their mouths what Mr. Irvine has given and will guard carefully against any of their own interpretations. Just as the foolish will yield to their big flesh and try to give out some thing of their own for self glory.
Yours very truly,
Rose and W. Edwards
Willie Edwards Letter to: Wm. Irvine
April 29, 1944
PO Box 2377
My dear William,
Thanks for yours of March 28, which reached us yesterday, just after we had mailed one to you. I believe we are truly thankful for this letter, perhaps more than any, the pain is very great. To say we are sorry for all the suffering we have caused you, is putting it lightly. We are pained at the very heart and you can rest assured that everything in our power will be done to right matters, both inwardly and outwardly, as far as we know.
From your first mention of trailer and car, we determined that that was the end of them. Then we encouraged those who were out to take a different place where they could be useful doing Apostolic work at hone, either in trailer or house until we got further word from you; but I suppose thru our own deadness and iniquity, we were slow to see that it meant husband and wife separated, and the 144,000 are to be men, not men and women. Now wish to say that we do not want to make excuses or justify ourselves, but that we purpose to do all you and He would have us, no matter what the sacrifice.
Madeline for the present will go to Phoenix, and there take a job, at least part time, which may be useful in contacting others, or as the plans work out. Don't know what Vance and Vada will do, but he is eager and willing for what it means to go forth, and Vada is willing for the sacrifice, but would like a word from you and until then, Vance may either remain in Phoenix or come with me, as you once mentioned companions and have wondered if you think two by two is still the plan. If so, then Bob should have a companion. I’m writing him today, telling him that where you honor him, we will honor and trust that there can be the right relationship and fellowship between all, so that God and you will be pleased, and the anointing ours.
Was thinking this morning of very much in the Psalms, especially 39:11 and 12. Then the prophets sent to show Israel their condition, right thru till Malachi which we can see is for the Message people today. How full the book is of warning and correction up to the very last in Rev. 2 and 3: but it's all like your letters--still holding out hope and showing us the way of escape. This the Testimony did not do, and I remember going thru Jeremiah and noticing how often he pictured their condition in departing from the Lord, yet over and over again He pleads with them to return and He would heal their backsliding, and surely this I purpose to do with all my heart and will seek to honour His name. Hoping to have your forgiveness, love and confidence, and His wisdom I remain humbly and gratefully yours,
P.S. Laughlins have sold their trailer and are moving North in hopes
of being useful doing Apostolic Work at home. Mitchells expect to
settle in Fresno for the same purpose, and I’m sure many others will
have heart to give Him their best. Dan. 9 was good today, showing what
humble, honest, confession means. W.E.
Rose & W. Edwards Letter to Fountains
October 18, 1937
PO Box 405
My dear Fountains and all:
Thanks for yours today which were a joy to read, for He loves to see the marks of littleness just as truly as He hates the big marks. The enclosures you sent of Oct. 6th is like shutting off all possibility of his having oil, for it's an attempt to cover and smooth the whole thing over, so that the same big flesh may continue to feed self by holding preeminence. Instead of repenting in dust and ashes, he would minimize the whole thing, and not only continue to exalt himself, but push Percy forward as well.
I tried to think that Oct. 6th letter was written before he had Mr. Irvine's reply, but it wasn't. It has been "wolf" right along, bossing and beating and covering himself with the wool of the sheep which he never found, and even if he had, it would have been no excuse, for what could any of us do in getting people delivered, but for the Leader and Commander.
Wm. Irvine took his stand under John McNeil. I took my stand under George Walker. Many in the Message have heard the most foolish and hopeless, so George's reminder that you heard thru Percy is not only weak, but bad, under present circumstances, for if he were right, he would have said, neither Percy nor I are in a condition to help anyone, and we fear to try lest Satan get advantage. He wrote Percy to keep his own counsels and act wisely, that he had acted wisely, and none know better than we do what this means, for the iniquity and wickedness which they have wrought can only be visited by Judgment.
Our danger lies in having any mercy on such, "Woe unto him that calleth evil good" or who treateth evil as if it was good. Mr. Irvine has often said, "It's just as bad to show Mercy to the wicked, as to fail in Mercy to the sinner, and I expect this is going to reveal a whole lot who will think they are doing the right thing in being merciful to it.
None of us can see the seriousness of it, and that is why our Leader writes as he does. At the first, he had hoped this wouldn't be necessary, and that was why we asked you not to pass on, but you can see by enclosed that he is anxious for all to get copies and be warned of the danger, so you can send copies to any you can reach, and if there is deliverance for them, it's time to wake up, for you notice he includes any who have encouraged such as being guilty also.
Glad you have Radio again, for the news is important these days. It seems almost a sure thing that Armistice day is our goal.
Best love to all,
Rose and W. Edwards.
This may be a little strong for some, so use your own Judgment.
Minnie Skerritts letter to Lovell Bakers, Denver, CO
c/o Wm. Edwards, Phoenix, Ariz
May 4, 1939
My dear Eva and Lovell:
We enjoyed your letter last evening as we read together, also the ones a few days before them from Bill and Lyda and the children. I’ll always be thankful for the privilege I had of being in Denver and meeting all of you, for now I can see each face as we read your letters and understand better all your struggles in the conflict which began when we said, “No,” to our own human nature, and “Yes” to Him and His control, but there’s nothing else in this world that’s worth while, and the farther along we get, the greater is our desire and determination to do His will at any cost.
You mentioned in your letters, Eva and Lovell, about the P.S. on the March 18 letter in which Mr. Irvine spoke of Zech. 4:10, and I thought I would tell you about something in one of his letters some time ago which helped me to understand about “despising the leastness days.” “For who hath despised the day of small things for they shall rejoice, etc.” All who have despised the day of small things or refuse to let the humiliation hinder them from seeing the coming of big things – will rejoice. It would be as foolish for us to look at our day of small things as it would be for the Disciples to measure Jesus by His rejection, death and burial, and fail to recognize His resurrection and Ascension.
How small and insignificant Wm. Irvine looked in the eyes of the Testimony when they rejected him and his Omega Message--surely he was the “Least,” but those who had true heart for him, looked forward to the time when he would be the greatest, as it says in Matt. 11:11, and we looked for the fulfillment of those wonderful promises to the Overseer as given in Rev. 2 and 3.
I have a letter which we got from Willie in Sept. 1937, and he contrasts the premises which God gives to the Overcomer, with what the Testimony attitude was, and so I am copying it as Willie wrote it then, and believe it will be helpful to you.
1. Rev. 2:7, “Eat of the Tree of Life” was God’s promise; but the Testimony said his message was death and devilish delusion.
2. “Shall not be hurt of second death.” The Testimony said Wm. Irvine USED TO BE God’s anointed, but not now – a castaway.
3. “Eat of hidden manna.” What he got was well hidden from them, and is it not the sweetest manna! A new name, not the old Wm. Irvine, which they were so familiar with and thought themselves better than he, but a New Man with a New Message. A Prophet, Manchild, Overcomer, which they (the Testimony) didn’t or couldn’t know.
4. Rev. 2:26, “Give power over the Nations.” They were determined to take his power away and thought they had succeeded, but he will surely be the man to break them to shivers. “The Morning Star,” after the dark night which we all passed through, and what a joy that first ray of light brought us.
5. Rev. 3:4 “Clothed in white raiment,” – after they had made them so black and filthy like Joshua’s and Jesus’ garments. “Will not blot out his name,” – how hard the Testimony have tried to blot it out, they said, “Don’t even mention his name and we will do away with the old songs, etc. So there will be nothing to bring his name into remembrance.
6. “Pillar in the Temple.” What a place to have, the Temple of Rev. 21. The New Jerusalem, all resting securely on the Man. “Go no more out,” his rejection by the Testimony was the sixth time he had been put out. But God’s promise is that he shall “go no more out.” “I will write upon him the name of my God.” The Testimony was ashamed of him—but God wasn’t ashamed to put his own name on him, and He repeats it.
7. “Will I grant to sit with me on my Throne.” They took his place, his chair, his fruit, his all—some thieves. But God gave him a Throne. What a path to travel, but a glorious ending.
With love to all,
Rose and W. Edwards
I should have made a separate copy of Willie’s letter, but will let this go, and I expect Ira and Orin can help you to read and understand what Willie wrote, for they were once in the Testimony and suffered at their hands just as all have suffered who had any honesty of heart.
May 17th—Since starting to write this we have enjoyed letters from Orval and Fern, also Sadie and Orin’s nice letters. It’s nice to see God undertaking for you as He saw your true heart purpose to please Him.
We had friends here last week from California, and they left Monday taking Willie and Rose with them, so it will be a nice change for them, and a wonderful treat for those who love and value every word which God gives them to speak.
Sorry I have been so long in getting this letter finished, but will send it along today with love and best wishes to all,
From Edwards’ and Minnie.
Willie Edwards’ Letter to Baltimore Friends
July 6, 1941
509 Marin Street
Our dear Folks All in Baltimore:
All of yours have been good, and much enjoyed and John’s and Henry’s as much as any, even though short, for they have evidence of God working, which must be if we are to be made new creatures in Christ Jesus.
Don’t forget that the proof of Him working in us I seen in that old things pass away, and that all things become new. If the door is opened to Him, there is sure to be a wonderful change when the new guest enters and gets control. All that is human in us resents the coming down to become as a little child. It takes more strength of character and purpose to be little than it does to be big. Notice as you look around in the world the big chest, the big cigar, the toss of the head, the big voice and laugh, the affected moves, etc. All speak of the emptiness and weakness of poor, frail man; and like the dead fish going with the current you find these always with the crowd because they haven’t the courage and strength of character to stand alone.
See the kind of men God got in every age; Abraham, Moses, Elijah, Daniel, Peter, Paul, etc. These men were giants if measured by character, and strength of purpose, but were as a little child in their simplicity and humility and freedom from self-seeking or desire to be anything in the eyes of men. They say woman is the weaker vessel, but many of them would put the strongest of men to shame when it comes to standing true to their convictions. Let all Baltimore try to frighten or move Mrs. Ruppersberger or Mrs. Owens from their steadfast purpose to obey the message of God and be loyal to His servant, William Irvine, in Jerusalem, and see how far they would get. See what Paul’s testimony was in Romans 8:35-39, “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ, shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or nakedness, or peril, or sword. For I am persuaded that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor any other creature shall be able to separate us from the Love of God which is in Christ Jesus.” And Paul’s God, and Wm. Irvine’s God is our God, and his life and love are just the same today.
When Wm. Irvine, at the age of thirty, decided to make Jesus his master, he was a big business man, with a thousand men under him. The greatest of them connected with that business had to look up to Wm. Irvine and take counsel from him. But he said in his heart, from this time, Jesus is going to be my Master, and I am going to be His servant to obey and follow the rest of my life. One of the first things he did was to gather these men together and tell them in simple, plain words of the choice he had made, and many were mightily moved and made to think seriously as they never had before. How many who laughed and mocked then, did he live to see cut down suddenly, while others went on to their doom and cried and prayed, but too late. Forty-seven years ago, he faced the world alone, standing for what Jesus lived and taught with no place for the traditions or religions of men, and today he has gathered in the various parts of the world a number who are to him what the disciples were to Jesus, as He prayed that last great prayer in John 17, every word of which is fitting in Wm. Irvine’s life and in his love for those who have heard and obeyed his message. So we have a worthy example in him, and it’s for us to follow it; all He asks is that we love Him with all our heart, soul, mind and strength.
The greatest week of witnessing I ever had was last week on way to and from Chicago; plenty of opportunity and variety. Communists, atheists, religious and sinners, and from Denver to California, we had a couple of priests, one of them listened well, and said he would like if I could meet their scripture interpreter, a man he said who does nothing else but interpret the scripture. I told him that man could not understand the scriptures, and gave him I Cor. 2:4. He was very strong on Matt. 16 and 18, and said their church was built on St. Peter. Well, I said that shows you are all wrong, because even though Peter means a rock, Jesus had no reference to Peter when He said, “On this rock will I build my church.” If He had had reference to Peter, He would have told him that was why He changed his name to Peter, but it was when Jesus first met Peter that he recognized the gritty man he was, and told him that Peter would be his name. So the rock that Jesus meant was the confession that Peter had just made, that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God. And I gave him I John 5:1. If James or John, or any of the other disciples had made that confession, Jesus would have said, “Thou art John, and on this rock I will build my church, for whosoever confesseth that Jesus is the Christ, is born of God.” And His church on earth means those who are born of God or called out from Babylon and the world. I said, you teach people to do the very things Jesus said they were not to do, and you also do them yourselves; you wear long robes, you call yourselves Reverend and teach people to call you Father; you accumulate property and make yourselves rich when Jesus didn’t have where to lay His head; you erect church buildings, bind heavy burdens and oppress the people; Everything Jesus condemned and forbid His disciples to do, you do and teach. He asked, what do you think of the pope. I said, what I have said to you, I would say to him, he also is the very opposite of Jesus.
When Jesus went forth to preach, He gave up all and said, foxes have holes, birds have nests, but the son of man hath not where to lay His head, and sent all His preachers out the same way—but the Pope lives in a home with 1200 rooms, and in everything else he is just as far away. Jesus said, if a man hear my words, and will not do them, he is a fool building his house on the sand.
How thankful we can be for a man who got the same anointing Jesus had, so he could see and show us and lead us in His true way, and now we have Jesus as Omega, using the keys of hell and death on all who would not hear and obey His servant, so that it’s destruction over the whole world, and it will continue until every seed of Cain is destroyed, but those who dwell in the secret place will not be touched.
One week ago today Rose, Veva and I arrived on the hill; wonderful place to rest here; quietness, good climate, with Minnie to give her the aid needed. She (Rose) is gaining, but it will be slow, yet with quietness and rest, and the treatments she received in Chicago and is continuing to get here, we have hopes will be beneficial. So we praise Him for all His leading and great and marvelous works, and we trust that each of you will value your lives and calling, and be strong in Him and in the power of His might. Glad for your visit to Phoenix; give all you can a chance to hear, but don’t force it on any.
Accept our truest love and best wishes from all here,
Ever yours in Him,
Rose and W. Edwards.
P.S. Mrs. Veva Young has been very faithful and is a good sample of what God can make of a life that is yielding to Him. W.E.
Go to: Collection of Letters by Wm. Irvine