by W.B. Screws

The Pilgrim's Messenger

"Have a pattern of sound words which you hear from me, in faith and love
which are in Christ Jesus."--11 Timothy 1:13
Published Monthly By W. B. SCREWS, Glennville, Georgia
Twenty-five Cents a Year

Volume XIV


Number 2.

Entered at the postoffice at Glennville, Ga., as second-class matter.


I wrote about the churches, in the August issue.  However, "churches" is a misnomer.  I intend no unkindness in saying this.  I am simply stating a fact. 

"Synagogue" is the transliteration of the Greek word, "sunagoge," or "synagoge," for, in English we use y where the Greek u is made like the English y.  "Synagoge" is made up of two words: Syn, meaning "together," and Agoge, which means "leading."  The Word means "together leading," or a company that has been led together.  In the transliteration, as it occurs in English, all the Greek letters are retained, and u is inserted between the last two. 

"Church" is a translation of the Greek words: Ek, which means "out," and Klesia, meaning "called."  The church is an out-called company. The church of God is composed of those whom God has our-called, or called out. 

It is generally admitted by all preachers and other "religious" workers, that in all the churches there are some who are merely professors, who do not possess the life of Christ-in short, some who have not been out-called.  I say this is generally admitted.  After such a craze for new members, as manifested by all the churches for many years, no one can deny that many who are unbelievers have been gathered in.  If there is one unbeliever in an organization, that person has not been out-called by God.  That organization can not be said to be a church, or the out-called.  Part of the  is in the organization, but the organization is not composed entirely of the out-called, and is not a church.  On the other hand, the membership, both believers and unbelievers, have been led together, into the organization.  Therefore, it is a synagogue. 

The forming of the church of God is the sovereign act of God.  No one is led into the church.  God calls sinners out, by His spirit, and baptizes them in spirit.  This act places them in the church.  God leads His saints, for we are told that as many as are being led by God's spirit, these are sons of God.  See Rom. 8:14.  This leading takes place after they become saints.  The very act of God that makes them saints, places them in the church.  The out-called and the baptism in spirit can not be separated.  The church is not a "led-together" company.  It is not an organization; it is an organism.  No one joins it; God places them in it.  Membership is not obtained by baptism in water; in one spirit we are baptized into one body. See 1 Cor. 12:13.

The word of God recognizes the so-called "churches" as synagogues.  In the Revelation, of Unveiling, we see one of them in the early part of the future day of the Lord, and it is called the synagogue of Satan.  See Un. 2:9.  Let us remember:

1.  What is written in the Unveiling, or the Revelation, will not take place until the day of the Lord begins.  See 1:10: "I came to be, in spirit, in the Lord's day."  John, in spirit, was transported across the centuries, in to the Lord's day, which is still future, and saw and recorded what shall take place then.

2.  The seven churches of Asia are Jewish churches that have had no existence as yet, but which will be on the earth in the early part of the Lord's day.  That they are Jewish, is proven by the fact that they are contrasted with some claiming to be Jews, and are not.  See 2:9.

3.  Those falsely claiming to be Jews are a synagogue of Satan.  See 2:9.  Not being a Jews, they are gentiles.  How can anyone escape the conclusion that they are a gentile "church?"

4.  Before the day of the Lord begins, all saints shall be taken away from the earth-that is, the church, the out-called of God, shall be taken up for a meeting with the Lord in the air.  See 1 Thess. 4:13-5:10.  Unbelievers will be left on earth, even though they have "joined the church."  In the early part of the day of the Lord, gentile "churches" will still be in existence but no saints will have membership in them.  This is why they will then be called synagogues of Satan. 

Let it not be thought that these "churches" will become synagogues after the saints are taken out of them.  They are synagogues now, but they are not synagogues of Satan.  After the saints are taken away, they will not become synagogues; they are already that.  They will become synagogues of Satan. 

It is not unkind to call them synagogues.  I am simply recognizing the meaning of the word.  They had to become synagogues.  If the scriptural truth, that the church is the out-called, had prevailed throughout the centuries, there would have no unscriptural together-leading, and God's plan that there would be synagogues of Satan on earth in the early part of the Lord's day, would have been defeated.  In other words, Un. 2:9, would never be true, if Christendom had held to the truth concerning the church.  Not only in the case of Israel of old, but also in that of Christendom, God's plans demand a measure of unbelief, as well as some belief.  I am not censuring anyone for this.   Christendom has carried out God's intention although it has not carried out His revealed will. 

The synagogues are not churches of God, but parts of the church of God are in them.  I have fellowship for them.  My attitude toward the saints, and even toward the unbelieving members of the synagogues is peace.  I have the same attitude toward the world.  I teach concilliation; may God lead me to manifest it in all my acts. 

But the synagogues have the same attitude toward the truth, as was manifested in the days of old.  Those who teach it, in the way of preaching, are usually cast out.  I am not complaining at this, either.  This is carrying out God's intention.  Many saints who love the truth of Universal Reconciliation choose to hold membership in the synagogues, while supporting those whom the synagogues reject.  They hold their membership there because of social advantages.  I do not censure them.  Some remain there in hope of winning the entire synagogue to the truth; others, because it gives them an opportunity to teach them the truth occasionally. 

Two things are certain: The synagogues will not be converted to the truth of Universal Reconciliation, and not all saints will sever their connection with these organizations before the Lord comes in the air.  If the former should take place, there would be no synagogues of Satan in the coming administration; if the latter should come to pass, the synagogues would become synagogues of Satan before God's time. 

Believers in Universal Reconciliation, who have been led b the spirit of God to sever their connection with the synagogues, and those who retain membership there, but attend and support the truth, should feel grateful to God for this privilege of believing, and suffering for the truth.  Let us not expect the multitudes to be with us.  May we be satisfied to be pointed out as unorthodox, and strange people.  Knowing what we do, we should not wish to be identified with, and commended by a system that is getting further and further from the truth.  But let us be careful to manifest the fullest fellowship for all who live devout lives, even though they do not fellowship us.  While we teach that there is one body, let us remember that a large part of this body is in the synagogues, that are called churches.  Let not out acts or teaching set up a barrier between them and us, and thus form ourselves into another sect.