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That everyone who thirsteth for the truth may obtain it, these publications are, as a Christian service, provided without charge. They levy but one exaction: the soul's obligation to itself to prove all things and hold fast to that which is good. The only strings attached to this free proffer are the golden strands of Eden and the crimson cords of Calvary - the ties that bind.


Excerpts from a lecture by Vernon Howell

To show that Vernon's (and Satan's) intentions in coming to the Branch was to stop Lois from publishing her and Ben’s messages we present his own words from a tape which he sent to the field about a year after Lois died, entitled The Seven Thunders - Written or Not.

Note: non-italicized statements in brackets "[ ]" are mine.

"1983, 10 days prior to Atonement a very very special message came to us at Mount Carmel Center. A message which God by His own word entitled the Serpent's Root - the Serpent's Root. Because of the title and because that the Branch's had for years been slacking in their Bible studies which Brother Roden and Sister Roden had consistently been telling them that they must study that they may know truth the message took everyone by surprise. George B. Roden has presently as it appears received Mount Carmel Center and its assets. The decease of Sister Roden should be a shock to many people. But as this tape is being sent to all the Branch's who had professed to be in the present truth, I would like to review a few things that were stated by the seventh angel, before all this trouble and all this shame came about.

"In 1983 after returning from Odessa, Texas after doing work out there for Mrs. Roden, I came back to Mount Carmel upon her request. I had been having some trouble in regards to... uh... certain things [masturbation]. I had been on Mount Carmel for quite a while without any type of social life [fornication]. Even George would probably admit that I even talked with him on this subject a couple of times. So, upon my return to Mount Carmel, and after certain complications, I had a discussion with Sister Roden. I had been uh... doing certain things [masturbation] in my own life which I never were able to, in my own strength, seem to overcome. But one thing I had done when I first came to Mount Carmel, I never realized the magnitude and enormity of the sin, and that was talking about a messenger derogatory and even like jesting.

"This I had done [with Clive and others in the printing room, especially] and the Lord had rebuked me on it. And so I came to Sister Roden and I came to apologize. And upon apologizing, that day, this message came. It was that simple. [This is not true, for he first presented his message more than one year before, and kept referring to the fact that all had rejected him the first time, and were in the trouble with George, etc., because of previously rejecting him.]

"My mind saw panoramic views of Scripture and as I was verbally explaining these things that I had seen to Sister Roden, she told me, she says, you have to present this to the class. And then began this message, and here we are today. Sister Roden, as everyone will avouch, was very strong in this message and not once did she ever write anything against the doctrine of this message. And not once did she ever raise her voice against this message. Not once. [not true] She insinuated things [regularly]. She insinuated.. But just like we had learned under the Serpent's Root message in Ezekiel 14 that those who fail to progress with the present truth properly weighing every point of evidence will fall.

"When Sister Roden's message came did Brother Roden stand up and say, oh this is true, everybody accept it. No, he did not, he said you must study on your own. George had for quite some time been stating that Sister Roden was a type of William Miller. Ok, I'll admit that, but only in the light of Ezekiel 14. Which tells us that if a man comes to a prophet with an idol in his heart and the stumbling block of his iniquity before his face God will, read it for yourself, deceive that prophet.

"Those who had placed all their faith in William Miller's experience not properly weighing Biblical evidence for the foundation of their faith were just simple tares in Satan's heavy half to eventually flood the Church out. That's the way the devil always does it. Every time a new message comes that supersedes the past message, many do not ask is it truth, but they say by whom does it come. And if it does not come through the channel that they wish they will excuse themselves with their own investigation. That's why when the Passover was called in 1984, there was two classes; those who entertained themselves up at the Church house, wearing weapons on their sides, and those who humbly sat and learned day by day the lessons taught by the Spirit of God down at Perry's house [not at Lois’ house where regular Church meeting were held]. And if we can bring to the attention of the people, we would like for you to remember that Sister Roden came to those studies, didn't she? Yes. [For the same reasons that I did, to try and recover those who were deceived by Vernon]. And she kept coming back. And when we had to go and we had to get a place down at the black Church, who kept coming to the meetings? Sister Roden. [to prove him wrong] And now that she is deceased, which God foretold she would be, if certain members did not accept the present truth by investigating it. We'll admit, and I'm sure that those at Mount Carmel know, that she was coming out to Palestine to all the meetings [to, again, point out his errors]. She told people that we had the Lucifer message. [This was much more than an insinuation.] Finally she became more bold in her own deception. [of rejecting his message] And the Lord let her rest.

" . . .One day I was walking with Sister Roden up towards the barracks. I used to do a lot of work around there and people will admit it, and I’m sure George will too in his honesty. I had been helping George take down his trailer house, because he had made a recent deal with Sister Roden in regards to a certain trade — he was trying to get means to go to Israel. What took place was that as I was walking up there, she was making a statement about a certain thing, and I said, ‘Well George says,’ and I explained what George has said. She says, ‘Well you don’t mind what George says.’ I said, ‘Well . . . He is going to be the next messenger . . .’ She says, "George ain’t gonna be anything.’ Excuse me, she said, ‘George isn’t gonna be anything until he learns how to be obedient and to take orders.’

" . . . So then what took place, 1983, a message came. But it did not come to George. All the time I had been working for Sister Roden I had been learning things. . . . So what happened was, what happens is that in 1983, the message came — The Serpent’s Root, and Sister Roden accepted it [this is not completely true]. She has never purported anybody’s message, Branch’s, never, never. She didn’t purport George in the beginning. Once she he was teaching error, she shut him down. This message wasn’t the same. She’s the one that wrote the first letter called Blow Ye The Trumpets In Zion.

"In Odessa I just simply quoted it out of my mouth as God was revealing it to me, and she wrote it all down [But, after examining what was written, she would not sign it, and Vernon, or one of his followers had to forge the signature.] I was money from her that published it. [This is not accurate to the facts.] She wrote the letters. But I had my faith in her, because she was the one that kept moving me forward. [This is a gross distortion.]

"But as I kept becoming more and more grounded on the message, she started changing [she was awakening to his deceptions]. She was discussing one day about printing Shekinah magazine again [after he had burned down the publishing house]. And the Lord told me to tell her not to publish it, that that phase of the work was to no longer be in existence anymore. The magazine had to become more doctrinal from the Branch doctrine instead of from worldly scholars. Well. When I gave her this in formation, she got upset. And I said, Sister Roden, this is what the Lord has said. Well, she says, ‘The Lord wants the work to be done too, and the Shekinah magazine is an important magazine.’ I said, ‘But Sister Roden, you know, you started this message and you want me to give this message, and the Lord has told me to tell you not to publish the magazine anymore.’

"We had bought’en several gallons of gasoline. And Sister Roden took all the cars away from us [this was certainly not the action of someone who supposedly had given her right to leadership to anyone].

"But we’re not going to go into that. So I had the key to the gas tank. And I had been doing a lot of work around there, so the Lord informed me that I was to keep [steal] the key. So as I was getting gasoline one day, she said to give her the key [because she had lawful control of all Branch property, since she was the president]. I says, ‘well, Sister Roden, I can’t do that.’ [He couldn’t accept her leadership]. She turned and got real mad. I couldn’t understand it. [I could, because, as an eye witness to this event, and that which proceeded it.]

"People know, people that were there they understand what was going on. Changes were taking place, that a new message was coming. A wonderful message, a wonderful revelation. So what took place was that she in rebellion turned away and she published the magazine. [This is absolute proof, from Vernon’s own words, that Lois did not pass the leadership to him, but openly opposed his teachings.]

" . . . They believe in dead prophets. They believe in idols, graven images, and molten images. . . . Why does George and everyone treat us so bad for? If I’m deceived, why don’t people write letters to me and show me where I am in error? Why don’t you do that Branch’s? Why don’t you show enough Christian love to show me where I am wrong as far as the doctrine.

Don’t tell me because I went to bed with this person, or because I used to drink beer, or I used to smoke cigarettes. That stuff ain’t gonna hold worth anything in the judgment. Everybody is saying I’ve got all these wives and stuff. Tell me who my wives are. Come here and point them out. People always like to talk.

" . . .’LORD. When thy hand is lifted up, they shall see, and be ashamed for their envy at the people.’ Those who are envious at us, their own fire that they caused, they wanted to cook us, right? They are going to be consumed. But the Lord is going to ordain peace for us, for we give all the Lord the credit for all the work that the Lord has done for us. We admit that we have allowed other people to rule us and to boss us around, that were not inspired, verse 13, but they are going to be dead. Well George and Sister Roden and Jane [George’s sister] all got mad when I was at Mount Carmel when I told them if you don’t listen to this message you will die.

" . . . How come they are dead in verse 14 of chapter 26? You know why they are dead? Because they are going to kill the Lord’s messenger [him, Vernon]. You wait and see. They are going to kill. . . . Yea, God is going to smite a person. [He is speaking of himself.] But he is going to smite those who smote him. . . . And like George and Jane told me one day at the courthouse, Jane is standing there and she says we are gonna crucify you. Well, that which you do, do quickly."


Excerpts from, The Seven Thunders — Written or Not?, by Vernon Howell, late 1987 - early 1988. The last time that I saw Vernon, in 1987, he told me that Lois had told him that he was "going to burn in hell." He just laughed as he said it. - DFM

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