M. J. Bingham Raid in CA.
5667 Stover Avenue
December 24, 1962
DAVIDIAN OFFICE RAIDED BY STANDING COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN AND M.J.B
Shortly before Sundown, Friday November 30th, Brother and Sister Haylock were hurrying home from the store, when to their surprise they saw Bingham’s station wagon backed up to the Association office. Then they were even more surprised to see Brother Bingham come out of the office loaded down with Association belongings. Their surprise was not so great then, to see the Standing-Committee chairman grabbing up a load and following him. These brethren hurried into the station wagon and drove off. Brother Haylock immediately notified the Sheriff’s office of the raid and called the other Council members.
Upon investigation it was found that they (the S.C. chairman and M.J.B.) had gained entrance to the building by forcing the rest room window in the back of the building, and that one of them, in all probability Brother Adair, had crawled through the window and opened the front door. Further investigation revealed the fact that besides taking the expensive equipment, such as electric typewriters, the mimeograph machine, addressing machine, and the adding machine; they had also taken all of the Association records and numerous other articles, leaving the heavy desks and articles of lesser value.
The Council members fastened the window more securely, locked the office doors, and returned to their homes.
THE NIGHT RAID
The following night (Sat. Dec. 1), the raiders returned, forced the window again, and except for a few articles, of little or no value, completely emptied the office, not only of equipment, but also of hundreds of dollars worth of supplies. They also took, and still have, a number of articles which are personal property of the workers. They have repeatedly refused to return these articles.
A neighbor lady across the street from the office told us that she tried to telephone Brother and Sister Warden late that night, to tell them what was going on in the office. But before “either of them wakened she had an answer. (Warden’s phone is an extension of the one in the office.) She asked if this were Mr. Warden, and was assured that it was. She then told what was going on, and the voice said, “yes, I know all about it, and everything is all right.” About one A. M. the neighbor lady phoned again. This time Sister Warden got to the phone in time to hear a voice tell the neighbor that “everything is fine, we are now taking the last load.” (Standing Committee members, we are sure that you do not want the responsibility for bearing this false witness on your shoulders!) Is this not strange work for the Standing Committee of a reformatory religious Association?
What they want with this equipment, we do not know, unless it is to try to deprive you of the S.S. lessons, and stop the work that has been returned to “Mother.” With the exception of the addressing machine and the adding machine, Bingham’s already have all the equipment they can normally use.
From what we have been able to learn, California law does not consider such break-ins a crime where the dispute over property ownership is in a religious organization, and the building is semi-public, as our office was. The only legal recourse we have is to file suit in court. However, we prefer to follow the admonition of the Bible, and suffer ourselves to be defrauded, rather than take them to law. We are trusting God to take care of everything in His own time and way.
This break-in is a major step in the further harassing, and attempting to stop the work by these brethren. One of their first steps was to go to one of the best law firms in Riverside, and, at considerable expense, have an official looking document drawn up. The chairman of the Standing Committee used this document, along with an affidavit, with which to tie up the Association’s bank account; making it impossible for anyone to use any of it. It is the bank’s policy to allow nothing to be drawn on any account over which there is a dispute.
These brethren have repeatedly threatened to take us to court. In fact, Brother Bingham declared that they will go clear to the Supreme Court of the United States if necessary. So far they have not actually started suit, even though Brother Bingham, on Nov.19, flatly told three of the Council members that unless we agreed to turn everything over to them in 48 hours, we would be in court before the week was out.
We are confident, though, that they well know the reaction which would surely come from the field, in response to such utter disregard for the admonition of the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy, should they go ahead and carry out this court threat, Hear Inspiration’s voice concerning these matters:
“Now therefore there is utterly a fault among you; because ye go to law one with another. Why do ye not, rather take wrong? why do ye not rather suffer yourselves to be defrauded?” 1 Cor. 6:9.
“Lawsuits between brethren are a reproach, to the cause of truth. Christians who go to law with one another expose the church to the ridicule of her enemies, and cause the powers of darkness to triumph. They are wounding Christ afresh, and putting Him to open shame.” –Acts of the Apostles, p. 306:1.
They have also gone to the Post Office and tied up the Association’s mail that is addressed to 5654 Norwood Avenue. What we regret most deeply about this, is the fact that now we cannot receive the letters coming from Seventh-day Adventists asking for the studies.
Now these brethren are even trying to take our telephone away from us. One of the ladies at the telephone office said she had always heard such good reports about Adventists and that she just couldn’t understand this kind of trouble. If this sort of business continues, whose name is going to bear the curse?
In the document which your Standing Committee chairman had drawn up by the lawyer, it is stated that Sister Warden had been made treasurer in place of Sister Bingham, and that Brother Green had been made editor in place of Brother Bingham. Neither of these statements is true. Sister Warden who was elected assistant treasurer at the Session, and who, as such, looked after the treasurer’s work while Binghams were in South America, continued in exactly the same capacity (Recently Sister Warden resigned. Sister Fleda Green was elected to fill the vacancy thus created, in a Council meeting held On Nov. 28.) Likewise in the editorial department; Brother Green was elected associate editor at the Session, and as such, did what he could to keep the work going while the Binghams were on leave-of-absence, and has been doing his best to keep things going in the same capacity during the ensuing emergency. But he has never been elected, or declared to be the editor of publications.
Standing Committee members; do you approve of these actions by your chairman? Are you going to permit this record to face you in the judgment?
To those who are in a position to see the situation, and who have endeavored to talk with the chairman of the Standing Committee alone, it is plain that he can scarcely make a move, or decision, without consulting Brother Bingham. Just who is running the Standing Committee? Is it possible even in the Standing Committee of the Davidian Seventh-day Adventist Association, that, “…. judgment is turned away backward and justice standeth afar off: for truth is fallen in the street, and equity cannot enter”? Isa. 59:14.
Did you notice that according to Brother Adair’s Oct. 23 report of the Standing Committee’s balloting, a number of Davidians have been disfellowshipped by that body? Now “hear ye the ROD,” and Its pronouncement concerning such actions.
“It is plain to see that those who cast out truth-believing brethren from their midst, are doing it by the command of the Evil One, for those who are mindful of the Lord’s command, do not cast out even the tares. They know that the church’s cleansing work-belong to the angels. 2 T. G. 10:20:1.
Brother Warden is getting used to being disfellowshipped by now. First he was disfellowshipped by the Laodiceans. Next by the new-Carmel Council, and now he has experienced the same at the hands of the Standing Committee of the D.S.D.A. Assn. The above ROD statement makes it quite clear that the same spirit prompted the action in each of the three instances.
“Satan sometimes so influences minds as to destroy all feelings of mercy or compassion. The iron seems to enter the heart, and both the human and the divine disappear.” –1T. 594:0
Are not all these developments a clear fulfillment of the following prophetic pronouncement? “As the work of God’s people moves forward with sanctified, resistless energy, planting the standard of Christ’s righteousness in the Church, moved by a power from the throne of God, the great controversy will wax stronger and stronger, and will become more and more determined. Mind will be arrayed against mind, plans against plans,…” –T. M. 407:1.
You will note that it says, “will become more and more determined.” This is where we find ourselves today with the enemy doing all in his power to bring the work to a full stop. Apparently he thinks he has this accomplished. If anyone can persuade himself that this work of these raiders is of the Lord; we would like to have it shown to us in Scripture, or the Spirit of Prophecy.
We believe that all sober-minded Davidians will prayerfully contrast the methods ‘of force and coercion that have been used against the Council, with the following:
“Christ does not drive but draws men unto Him. The only compulsion which He employs is the constraint of love. When the Church begins to seek for the support of secular power or resort to raids, it is evident that she is devoid of the power of Christ–the constraint of divine love.”– The Mount of Blessing, 182
STANDING COMMITTEE MEMBERS, will you continue to support, and thereby take the responsibility, of such actions? Or will you now rise up and demand that justice be done?
DAVIDIANS, will you stand behind Standing Committee members who sanction these doings? Or will you rise up and demand righteousness of your Standing Committee member?
REMEMBER: “If God abhors one sin above another, of which His people are guilty, it is doing nothing in case of an emergency. Indifference and neutrality in a religious crisis is regarded of God as a grevious crime, and equal to the very worst type of hostility against God. “–3T. 281:0.
This emergency has naturally thrown the work far behind. Though very late, the next quarter’s Sabbath School lessons will be ready to mail along with this letter. That is, barring more difficulty. They would have been in the mail early in December had the work not been crippled by the raiders taking away our equipment.
Since the certificates of Fellowship as well as the application blanks were taken in the raid, we will be unable to fill your requests as soon as was announced in the Code. However, we will make every effort to replace these items just as soon as possible.
As the raiders have now demanded the name of the Association and lodged their claim with the postal authorities, thereby tying up the mail, we are requesting that no mail monies be sent in the name of the Association until the matter is resolve. Instead, please address all mail to any member of the Council at 5667 Stover Ave. Arlington, Calif.
We cannot conscientiously, perhaps not legally, bow down to the demands of these brethren, and release to them the name, telephone, the bank and savings accounts, and everything except, the funds that you have remitted since Oct. 23. Many of you have already written, expressing your convictions against our bowing down to such demands, and stating that you do not want any funds you send, to fall into the hands of the opposition. What do the rest of you say?
Though this raid has greatly increased the difficulty of the work, we thank and praise our Heavenly Father for it, realizing full well that it is one of the lesser trials which are to prepare us for greater trials to come.
“When you are in God’s care and in His control never say the Devil did this or that regardless what it be, for he can do nothing except he is allowed to do it. Always give God credit.” 2 T. G 35:29:1.
Please pray for us and for-one another, that we may all be yielded to His Spirit in the troublous times, ahead.
Sincerely yours to stand firmly on the principles set forth in the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy, that we may be among that company in whose mouth (or pen) is found no guile,
[Signed] H. G. Warden, Vice President
[Signed] Ruby W. Haylock, Secretary.
[Signed] C.H. Haylock, C.M.
[Signed] Mrs. Shirley Hixson, C. M
[Signed] W. H. Green, C.M