[Bates’ Pamphlet #2] Second Advent Way Marks and High Heaps


Matthew 25:5. “While the Bridegroom tarried they all slumbered and slept.” In overhauling our dead reckoning, and re-examining our past observations, we could discover no mistake. But we did discover one thing which was to us a clear explanation of our text, at the same time so simple that the most we could say about it was, that God had withholden our eyes from this point as he did the two disciples in company with Jesus at his resurrection. And this was that six months had yet to be added to the prophetic periods before we could make them out full and complete. For instance, we now could see clearly that it would take every hour of 457 B.C., and 1843 years after to fill up 2300 days or years; and so of the seven times of the Gentiles; 677 B. C. and 1843, was only 2520 as given on the chart. Here we see plainly that the commandment to restore and build Jerusalem, did not go forth until the middle of 457; and so of the captivity of Manasseh, B. C. 677. And also that the 6000 year of the world could not be complete until the seventh month, where it commences. BP2 58.2

That the ten Virgins, a company of Second Advent believers, had been out with their lamps (bibles) to meet the bridegroom (Christ) in 1843, was not doubted. That he tarried, that is, came not so soon as they expected him, was also clear. That this company became drowsy and fell asleep, and consequently lost a great part of their interest in the doctrine, and especially on time, was afterwards fully demonstrated, first by the publication of a letter from one of our leading messengers (Wm. Miller) in the Advent papers, which stated that we must now look for the bridegroom (or Christ) every day until he came. This was generally admitted, but was soon proved to be a great mistake; but it was about the best we knew at that time, (May 1844) for while we were in this stupid, dark and still time, (Midnight) a cry was raised, which clearly proved that the Bridegroom could not come until at least three months. BP2 58.3

Secondly, by the tens of thousands of confessions which these very same virgins made, at private and general conference, and camp meetings, after they were aroused by a cry at Midnight. So clearly was this part of the parable fulfilled, that I can now hardly remember an individual among all the virgins, that did not confess (and many with pungent sorrow) their stupidity and loss of interest in the doctrine and time of the Advent. It may answer for individuals who seldom visit our general meetings, to deny this fact, but any one who frequented them at this crisis, must have had their ears closed, and been fast asleep, not to have witnessed the multiplied and continual cases of this kind, in all parts of the meeting. But why need I labor any further to prove what almost every living virgin in that company knows was their experience. I think it would be as easy to prove that we never had any meetings after April, 1844. I think this, with what further additional evidence we shall offer in another place, will sufficiently demonstrate this second waymark in our pathway, during this judgment hour proclamation. For we did clearly and literally, according to the representation of an Eastern marriage, fulfil the text in the 5v.; viz: became drowsy and fell asleep while the Bridegroom tarried. BP2 59.1