Beloveds, worldwide, a letter of explanation in brief:
THE NAZARITE VOW, to be holy unto God, we believe, applies to the Elect of the family of Israel, and is the life of our Lord Jesus, the First-born, in its substance of profession and practice. One of the requirements is, "Thou shalt not round the corners of thy beard nor mar the corners of thy head."
This, of course, is only for those who set themselves to follow in the strait and narrow way our Master trod; not for the world, for the natural man is at enmity against God, and, "Doth not even nature itself teach a man it is a shame to wear long hair?" But, we are not ashamed to follow the Master in his Nazarite appearance, and He said, "My sheep know my voice, and a stranger they will not follow."
WE HAVE NO FORMS OR CEREMONIES; pretensions are lifted, and men and women must follow in Spirit and in Truth or never inherit, regardless of styles of clothing, or manner of wearing the hair, or cloaks of religious belief, or sashes, adornments, or circumcision, or other peculiar rites. ALL THOSE THINGS WERE TYPES AND SHADOWS of better things to come, i.e. the clothing of that one immortal Spirit, by which the work for Israel will be done; abiding in the Word of His patience.
Pictures and images, if not worshipped, are harmless, and may preserve history. The fiery Law of Christ, that Other Comforter, which the world cannot receive, preclude the image in offspring, which has been the foundation and upkeep throughout the 6 days of the fallen kingdom upon earth. Israel will not be dead letter about types and shadows, all of which, as James Jezreel, the 6th Messenger said, were as "tolling corn to lead Israel to their Father's crib." They had there place in teaching obedience to whatsoever God should ask of his children; and Israel should search themselves to see whether, had they lived in those days of such requirements, they would have followed on in childlike obedience and fear of God.
I look back over the Visitation, knowing that the incorruptible bride (those who died in the faith, not having received the promise) had to be made up first, and find comfort in the knowledge that those who were faithful to their calling under the 6 foregoing Messengers, would have rejoiced greatly to know the mystery of Godliness, God manifest in the flesh, that is the revealed Message of the 7th Messenger.
From our experience, during the Ingathering of the foundation stones of Israel, and having seen many come and go from the place of the Holy, (where the Holy Virgin law of Christ is taught), I no longer wonder at the dying words of Jezreel, "We are not the people, we are far beneath the standard." So, there is a standard of conduct, of true and unfeigned humility, of untiring virtue, and persistence in season and out of season, WITH BUT ONE PURPOSE; one faith, one Lord, one baptism (of the Holy Ghost and with fire); keeping the eye single to Christ. The fiery Law of Christ and the immortal covenant of life was not fully revealed under the former 6 Messengers, but under the 7th; and as pertaining to Israel, when that law came forth, it was as good as accomplished, for Israel will conform to the image of Christ.
Israel are VEGETARIANS from the standpoint of not killing any of God's creatures, even to satisfy appetites and lusts. Be ye clean that bear the vessels of the Lord. Israel shall measure up to that command, and "present their bodies a living sacrifice"; Thou shalt not kill. The diet in Eden was a vegetarian diet (see page one of manual/Bible).
As to drinking coffee, tea or wine, we find no command against these, but one seeking for the life of the body should be careful to do his part for the proper preservation of his health, in a meek and unobtrusive way (temperance).
"In returning and in rest, so shall thy strength be." Return to the childlike simplicity and unquestioning obedience to what God shows us, and rest from the evil; "making no provisions for the flesh to obey it in the lusts thereof." Working for the Kingdom is a change of work, and is even considered a rest in the world. "Work, for the night cometh, when no man can work."
WE HAVE NO RELIGIOUS CEREMONIES, and secret rites or formulas; no display of religion to be seen and heard of men. We make no public prayers, keep no particular day of worship; but to keep each day alike, Holiness unto God. Paul said, "away with your new moons and sabbathdays, for I am weary of them, and they are an abomination unto God. These are types, and are at best a representation of the real Sabbath of rest that yet remaineth for the people of God. The Sabbath Day Israel are preparing for (and none will enter who are not prepared and have on the wedding garment, clothed with the Word of God) is the seventh thousand year day, the day of the Lord, wherein there is no sin, sickness, sorrow, lamentation, mourning and woe, and where all tears are wiped off all faces, neither shall there be any more death; for the last enemy to be destroyed is death."
Any light received by members would have to harmonize with the scriptures and the writings of the Messengers (7), who have sounded during the "latter rain", or that person would be ashamed to bring it forth. The Visitation, however, as James Jezreel said, is like a diamond, sending forth its myriad scintillations from every angle when held in the light. Israel can never learn too much of Truth, but philosophies of men always show earmarks of inharmony.
Men, women and children may enter Mary's City of David upon seeing the life of the body as the substance of the teaching of Jesus Christ, and desire to run in the race under the conditions made necessary in the Commonwealth of Israel. If any are bound by the law, they must have the consent of their legal bindings, or to relieve their bondage in a legal manner that would keep them from following the Spirit whithersoever it leadeth. The Ingathering must be free to preach the pure Word of God, and not be subject to legal pressure from family relationships. Every person must come as an individual to worship God in Spirit and in Truth, even as the Gospels make plain.
We offer a home to Israel who see the light and appreciate the opportunity to separate from the ways of the world, so that they may be free to walk after the Spirit, and no longer after the flesh.
Many will come and go from the place of the Holy, or where the Holy place ought to be; where the Holy Virgin Law of Christ is taught, and people expected to live up to it if they profess it.
The Ingathering is to be the work of God, for the preparation of a home for all such who wish their labors to be devoted to spreading such Word of glorious deliverance, and to which, if they had millions in wealth it would be given as a small sacrifice for the up-building of God's Kingdom on earth. Many have come like Ananias and Sapphira, holding back part of the price of the land, (when God requires your all) and made shipwreck of faith; and wasted their time, and that of everybody else: like the unclean fish caught in the Master's net to be thrown back into the sea of confusion, sin and death.
Peter said, when he was forbidden to speak on the streets or in the temple, "Shall we obey God or man?" He was certainly bold to tell them they had crucified the Son of God and put Him to an open shame. So that question has been answered, and need not be further answered in these perilous days. Shall I obey man or God--all must answer and choose for themselves on that score. Either enter the furnace seven times heated by the Messengers, or stay far enough away so the flames will not leap out and scorch your wings and utterly destroy you. It is much better, i.e. of less condemnation, to never have known and tasted of the Good Word of God, and the power of the world to come, than to trifle with it; for a greater condemnation is in store for all unfaithful. If God opens the way for one to come to the Ingathering, after that person has become satisfied in his own mind that it is the thing to do, that person better be led by that delivering spirit, or suffer worse bondage, from which he may never escape till his body is lost. Satan will seek to bind all who could be of any assistance to the work of Ingathering, and therefore put stumbling blocks in their way that seem insurmountable. But God locked the lion's mouth on many occasions, and He is the same God today He was in Noah's or Lot's or Daniel's day, and will deliver in His way. All else is vanity and vexation of Spirit. The Ingathering means a separation for the purpose of benefit to the individuals themselves, to relieve them of the necessity of money getting, so they may have no excuse for not seeking God with their whole heart, soul, mind and strength. There is always plenty of work in the Ingathering, which is enjoyed by all persons of a right Spirit, that requires all of the help we can get; for there are homes to build, farms to raise necessary food, and other endeavors to supply the needs of all gathered.
You will understand, WE DO NOT PERSUADE ANYONE to come to the Ingathering, but to the contrary, set forth it is no place for the uncertain or fearful minded person who are not sure it is the only way for them to walk.
The world is large and offers various fruits, the faith of Israel only offers deliverance from all that in any way hinders spiritual progress; and if anyone expects to continue along the line of the old standards, they better stay where the pastures are green, for Zion's hill, during the crucifixion and regeneration has every appearance of barren rocks, and only a firm hold upon the hand of God can anyone step by step up into the temple of Wisdom, and Wisdom, the Mother Jerusalem Above, shall be justified of her children.
May the very God of Peace sanctify you wholly, that your whole body, soul and spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus, and trusting you may not be offended in me, who is proud to be a servant of the Lord.
For there is no God in all the earth, but in Israel, and I am His servant.
The above letter was written many years ago by Sister Mary Purnell, and published in small booklet to answer the volume of inquiries into the Israelite House of David and its Reorganization in 1930 under the direction of Mary Purnell. It is here presented with a few minimal amendments from the current day Secretary of Trustees for Mary's City of David, R. James Taylor.