Seventh Day Adventism and the Branch Davidians Essay

Seventh Day Adventism and the Branch Davidians Essay

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Houteff bought a plot of land and moved outside Waco, Texas, bringing just under a hundred followers with him and thereby establishing the Davidian sect. They built a variety of buildings and named the location Mount Carmel after the mount where Elijah overcame the prophets of Baal. On a side note, this Mount Carmel was different from the one involved in the Branch Davidian inferno. Houteff did not want to break away from the Seventh-day Adventism and continued to view his evangelistic message as directed to the Adventist church. Seventh-day Adventism continued to play a major role in the theology of the Davidians though their relationship was bitter. The Davidian sect grew and although Houteff died in 1955, his wife Florence became the leader of the Davidian sect.
With the death of Victor Huoteff, the Davidian sect morphed with each new leader. As each individual rose to power, the sect transformed in theology and practice, all the while firmly rooted and established in Seventh-day Adventism. Victor’s teaching, in connection with Seventh-day Adventism, focused on the expectation of Christ’s return. Florence, in looking to the Bible and Victor’s teachings, proceeded to set a date for the commencement of the new era, April 22, 1959. They avoided the language of “the return of Christ” due to the unmet expectations William Miller had fostered. Rather, they expected some important event that would change the course of history and mark the beginning of the new age of Christ’s rule. Following her prediction, many Davidians sold their homes, businesses, and moved to Mount Carmel. Unfortunately for many of these followers, Florence’s prophecy proved false and she lost much influence as the leader of the Davidians. On Ma...


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... Involvement of a Major Apocalyptic Movement. Knoxville, TN: University of Tennessee, 2001.

Newport, Kenneth. The Branch Davidians of Waco: The History and Beliefs of an Apocalyptic Sect. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 2006.

Pitts, William L. "Changing Views of the Millennium in the Davidian Tradition." Journal of Religious History 24, no. 1 (2000): 87-102.

________. "Women Leaders in the Davidian and Branch Davidian Traditions." Nova religio 12, no. 4 (2009): 50-71.

Rifkind, Lawrence J., and Loretta F. Harper. "The Branch Davidians and the Politics of Power and Intimidation." Journal of American Culture 17, no. 4 (1994): 65.

Rowe, David L. God's Strange Work: William Miller and the End of the World. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Eerdmans, 2008.

Seventh-Day Adventist Church Manual. Hagerstown, MD: General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, 1995.

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