KEYWORDS: way, fred, people, kings, lord, god

Way of Kings, The

David Berg

DO 2382 11/87

1. My time working with Fred was a good sample of working with kings. You pretty much just do what they say, try to please them, try to get along with them, as long as you're getting what you want. But you can't expect to always get everything you want.—In fact, you can be thankful if you manage to get along with them at all! So don't expect everything to be rosy all the time. You've got to constantly be walking on your toes, hoping that you're not treading on theirs!

2. Don't be too disappointed if things don't always work out the way you'd like them to with your kings. Look at it this way, if they agree with some things & they do any of the things you've asked them, you can be thankful. Be thankful if they do what you've asked at all, even if they eventually kick you out! At least you will have tried! Don't be too terribly disappointed or surprised even if that's what eventually happens! (Maria: Well, I'd say some of our people ought to try to make more friends & kings so they're not so dependent on just one.)

3. Fred used to say, "I'd rather have ten thousand little old ladies each giving me a dollar a month, than one man giving me $10,000 a month!" He had problems along that line once. This king was printing his paper for free. Fred printed up to 700,000 copies one month & he wanted to just scatter them all over & saturate the country. But the guy began to sort of feel like he was being taken advantage of or something, so he cooled off & backed out of the whole deal. Well, it was asking a lot‚ but at least Fred tried.

4. Anyway, I'm always leery of kings, they're almost always sensitive & you're almost always treading on their toes somehow. The best thing is to just go easy, don't push, let them get their ideas. And whatever you do, clearly give them the impression that they're the boss!—That you have to do!

5. The main thing is, use it while you've got it‚ because you may not have it for long! Even if you only have their backing & support for a year, at least you will have done something. Just chalk it up to experience! When the Lord gives you an obvious open door, you've got to go through it!—How wide it's going to open, how long it's going to stay open, & how soon it's going to slam shut‚ that's up to the Lord! We can't control that. So just use it while you've got it!

6. That's how Jeth fell out with Brother Paul‚ that guy in Texas who bought the Selah School for him for $10,000. He bought an unused school that had gone out of business & gave it to the Family to use. Well, Jeth didn't take too kindly to being bossed around by Brother Paul! When that TV network said that Jeth strutted down the main street of TSC wearing a cowboy hat, a gun & acting like the sheriff, they had it about right! That's what he wanted to be. He was like a little boy trying to act like a bigshot.

7. So Jeth began telling Brother Paul, this great big Texan, what to do & how to do it! I can't say that I blame Jeth too much for not getting along with him, but they managed to keep that place for a few years. You just can't expect to keep kings forever.—Not even Martin Luther could do it! When he fell out with one king he moved to another.

8. Just be thankful that we get as far as we do‚ & remember that it's only the Lord that's doing it! So if He lets it stop or He lets something go haywire, well, that's up to Him! We can't make them be what we want them to be & do what we want them to do! When people are old & settled in their ways they don't change that easily.

9. (Maria: Sometimes they want to be a Family member & be considered full–fledged Family members, but a king is always a king!) That's for sure! They just don't want any of us to think that we're any further along than they are! Because that might mean there's something they can't have or can't be.

10. So don't expect them to always go through with everything necessarily. All you can do is make suggestions, & if they don't go over, at least you tried. It's just like witnessing, & like I've always said, there's always success in witnessing! Even if you never win a soul, you're a success because you're obeying. No matter what they do, that's their choice, you can't make them make a decision.

11. Kings are their own bosses‚ they own their kingdoms. After all, they've worked hard for a long time & they don't want to have some little punks come along & tell them how to run it! So all we can do is make suggestions, & if they don't go over, well, we tried. Our job is to make suggestions, & since they're kings & queens, they don't have to take them.

12. We're like the Prophets of God in the Old Testament. If you want to read an account of the relationship between Prophets & kings, just read the Bible! In most of their dealings with kings, the Prophets got more "no's" than "yes's"! They would tell the king what to do, but the king didn't always do it.—And he'd always get in trouble for not doing it‚ but that was really too late. Once in a great while the king would get in such bad trouble, that he would be willing to humble himself & apologise to either God or the Prophet. However, that was very rarely that they'd ever admit that they'd made a mistake, even when the Prophet & the Lord told them.

13. I've lived nearly 70 years, & you can't help but learn a few things in all that time. Even the years with my folks, they had the same problems in their dealings with rich people. My Mother literally got to the point where if she saw a rich person coming, she'd turn around & run the other direction! She said they are the worst people in the World to ever try to work with because they always want to tell you how to do everything & boss you around! They're used to being bosses, used to telling people what to do, & they figure they're just hiring you‚ that's all.


14. Actually, I've been very thankful when I've heard how different kings & queens have provided properties & facilities for us & are letting us use them. But I've also felt edgy because I know what it's like. I've seen my folks go through it. Remember the story I told you about Weston & the Tabernacle?—He just insisted on giving that money to my Mother, loaning her that $10,000 to repair the Tabernacle. She then let him start giving his testimony at the meetings, & soon he got the idea that he was getting to be a pretty good preacher! So he asked Mother to take him out on the road & teach him how to evangelise, give him a few nights during her meetings, & she taught him some of her sermons‚ her father's sermons, etc.

15. He was a multi-millionaire, he had a huge lumber business in Pennsylvania, & he was used to being the boss. I remember him well. He lived in our home for awhile‚ & we went up & lived in his home for awhile. Children have real discernment & amazing ESP for personalities. All these great men used to come to our home & I always sized them up. The greatest were really the humblest. I was always leery of these guys that acted like bigshots, you know‚ "I'm really somebody!"

16. So Mother got Weston started, but he figured that from then on he'd be on his own. He had the finances & the push & everything else to kind of push people around. I wouldn't be a bit surprised that when he insisted on loaning that money to Mother that he already had it in his head what he was going to do! Rich men are like that!—They're always scheming & planning in advance. So in just a few years he soon pushed his way right to the top to where he was sitting as Chairman of the Board, not only of the Tabernacle but of the whole denomination in New York! A few years before he'd been a retired sick man in Miami with one foot in the grave, expecting to die any minute!

17. By that time, he realised he had the power, & he was so self-righteous, he felt he had the justification to take the Tabernacle away from Mother. Besides, Miami was a very nice place to retire to & hold a pastorate. So he got a weasel on the Board of the Tabernacle who was reporting everything to him, all the things he didn't like, till he felt justified to kick us out & take it over himself! So it happens with kings.

18. Actually, it happens so often it's pitiful! They just figure if the building & the property is theirs‚ you're theirs too! And if they clamp down on you, the leader, they'll often try to not only reclaim their property, but steal your flock as well! I saw this as late as with Fred‚ not to mention some of our own people, like Jeth, Deb & some of them. That's what ultimately infuriated them so much, that they didn't get the flock, they couldn't persuade enough people to go with them.

19. When that happened, dear Weston was chagrined, to say the least! He thought he was going to keep the people‚ so he was really embarrassed when he got there & there was only a little handful of only about 50 people left! Mom still had about 500 people that went with her to the school auditorium she got the use of! Of course, after awhile, when we didn't get a nice building & we still had to go around to different borrowed auditoriums, we eventually got further & further away from that district where most of the people lived, so the people began to drift back to their dear old Tabernacle.—It's amazing how people can be more attached to a building than a personality!


20. The first time Fred tried to take the work away from me was the Florida Soul Clinic in Miami, the FSC. He had been reporting in his little weekly newspaper what was going on at his school & how much he was producing, & he had started giving witnessing stats, Salvation stats & all that, which was fine. But when we started the FSC, he wanted to get the credit for it as well‚ & he wanted to brag about it in his paper, so he started bragging about how he had started a new school in Florida, & he began putting our stats in too.—Which was fine, as long as his stats were better than our stats! But as soon as our stats began growing beyond his stats, all of a sudden he started dropping all stats from his paper!—That was a different story!

21. And when he saw we were booming so & getting along financially as well, his secretary wrote & said, "Fred thinks that you should report all of your finances to him as a branch of our organisation so that we can have all of our finances straight & be able to give a proper report to the IRS.—Please send us your financial report each month!" I wrote back & said, "We're handling our own finances down here, & I have my own relationship with the IRS, & they told me that I don't have to report to you at all, as long as I'm reporting to them!" Whew! All of a sudden Fred started clamming up & things got real cool!

22. I'd gotten Fred's Gospel TV show on several Florida stations free of charge. Mind you‚ that's when the show was a whole hour long. But in the early days of TV they were pretty glad to get some kind of a nice show free like that, especially something religious‚ as they could count it as a public service & get credit with the FCC (Federal Communications Commission) for a certain proportion of public service time that they were expected to give away to churches & charitable things. So it was real easy to book it in those days.

23. So I told Fred, "All you have to do is pay my expenses. You don't have to take care of the school or anything, Eve can take care of it, things are going fine with us." We were doing all right. We got out a monthly newsletter & we had a lot of good support, with about 2,000 people on my mailing list. Of course, a lot of them only gave on occasion.

24. We usually tried to clean up our mailing list about every 6 months, or at least once a year. If they'd received our letters for that long & hadn't sent a gift, we usually sent them a final letter telling them, "Since you're not interested in giving, we're planning to drop you from our mailing list unless you prefer to be kept on!" That last warning would get some of them to right away quick give a nice big gift & ask to be kept on the mailing list! So we were doing all right.

25. But Fred said, "Dave, you're doing so good on the TV, I'll give you fulltime support & pay all your expenses if you'll go out fulltime.—But to do that, I don't want you dividing your time, you'll have to close up your little school there!" Well, I wouldn't have cared a damn about what he said, I would have gone ahead with our school come what may, except that I had received advance notice from some people that Fred got himself in trouble with his secretary, Willy.—He didn't have a divorce from his wife yet‚ & his secretary was now about to have a baby. People had started sending me newspaper reports from all over the country, even from Europe‚ about this young 16-year-old girl who was secretly having a baby by this TV preacher down in Texas!

26. I'll tell you, it's hard to keep such things secret!—Especially from the church people! That's why I've been as open as I have about everything. I just figure if people can't take it, they shouldn't be here! Our people don't think anything of it, it rolls like water off a duck's back. Scandal?—I couldn't be scandalous enough for you! But of course it just infuriates the church people!

27. With all these Christians sending us these reports & clippings of how this big scandal was breaking out in the papers, I didn't want to stick up for Fred publicly, I didn't want to have to face Bible students & Christians & self-righteous church people face-to-face & have to constantly apologise or try to defend or justify Fred & blah blah! I just figured‚ well‚ praise the Lord, that's that! It would have probably folded up our school anyway, because we had mostly church people who had dropped out of different churches.—That's why this time I wanted to be pretty sure I didn't have many church people!

28. So I got this notice from him that said, "It's either/or, Dave! You'd better accept this new job of booking the TV show fulltime or else!" It was either/or, I had to make the decision. In our little school there in Florida, they hadn't heard about Fred's scandal yet. But people outside were sending me clippings from all over.


29. So I went into the bathroom‚ where I prayed desperately. I said, "Lord, what should my attitude be toward this man? What am I supposed to be? What am I supposed to do?—He's making me make a choice!" I realised that the news of Fred's affair was going to be too big of a scandal, that it would probably kill our school anyhow. So while desperately praying & asking the Lord what to do & how to be towards Fred‚ He answered & said, "As David with Saul!"

30. Even when Saul drove David out of his kingdom & tried to kill him, even when he went out & hunted him down to try to find him & get rid of him, Saul always apologised.—1Sam. 24:16-19; 26:21,25. Several times Fred tried to cut me off, but something would always happen to stop him. After I'd gotten his show on a big station or something, he didn't have the heart to fire me!

31. But Willy‚ Fred's secretary who became his new wife, was jealous of the way he loved me. He really loved me, just like Saul loved David. A lot of times Saul was so jealous he wanted to kill David, but at the same time he really loved him, he knew David was right. He knew the Lord was blessing him on account of David.

32. Fred was often jealous & trying to find fault with me. The final thing was that he said I was asking for too much money. Well‚ I wasn't going to do all that work for nothing, especially when I saw how luxuriously he lived!—I wasn't living extravagantly like that at all! In fact, my little family was sacrificing & barely scraping by most of the time, & I was just asking for enough to cover expenses!

33. Well, it's a long, long story, mostly a sad tale. In many ways it was a constant battle, just like it was between David & Saul & his Benjamites. Every time I'd come out to Fred's place to visit him it was all love & kisses, wonderful! He had a lawyer there who loved me, who was always sticking up for me & on my side. When I'd tell him how I had to have so much money, I couldn't do the job without it, & I'd show him all the expenses & what it cost, he'd go to bat for me & help persuade Fred to be a little more charitable.

34. So all that to say that I know how undependable kings & queens are‚ & how they can turn at the slightest shift in the wind. But if they receive us & give us places to stay, how can we refuse when it's obviously the Lord opening the doors & providing us with marvellous opportunities? The kings may actually be something really very small‚ but they may be the start of something big.

35. Fred was just a step in my life. My time working for him was just a stage in my training to get me ready to go all the way. He was a starter, just like Saul had his time in David's life. David started out under Saul's direction & got a lot of his training under him. He learned from Saul not only how to be a king, but largely how not to be a king as well! And because David was willing to go out & sacrifice & live in a cave & all that, his people sacrificed with him, they'd follow him to the death!—1Sam. 22:1,2. They even risked their lives one time to get him a drink of his favourite water from his home town!—1Chron. 11:17,18. He suffered with them & they knew he gave his life for them, so they were willing to give their lives for him.

36. David refused to do a thing against Saul until he died. In fact, even in Saul's death David honoured him with great honour & prayed prayers & sang a song about him, how the mighty hath fallen etc.—2Sam.1:19-27. It's a very touching prayer & it always makes me cry when I think of Fred. "Oh, how the mighty hath fallen!" He finally dwindled down to nothing, just one little station & one little show, one little mission & that's it.

37. Yet what I'm doing today was his vision‚ to send out faith missionaries by the thousands to evangelise the World!—Just like David fulfilled what Saul was supposed to do for the kingdom! He did what Saul wanted to do & what Saul failed to do because of his disobedience. David stepped into his shoes & went in & conquered the kingdom & conquered more land than they ever had & made it a greater kingdom, a more powerful kingdom, a richer kingdom than ever!

38. So that's the way of kings. You go their way, & they think they're using you‚ but what God is doing is He's using them. And you go their way as long as you can use them. How many times have I said that? (See Nos. 27, 212, 217, 218 etc.!) You go their way as long as you can use them. Of course, you always let them think they're using you. But when they get to where they think they can do anything they want & use you any way they want to, & not God's way, there always comes a parting of ways.

39. How many kings do we have in the Family? (Peter: Not many.) We've had a lot of kings & a lot of them thought they were part of the Family, but there always seems to come a falling away. Because it seems like they just can't take it.

40. Just look at the Bible!—The kings really squirmed & agonised under the thumb of the Prophets! They didn't like to have to take what they said, they didn't even like God telling them what to do! So it seems almost impossible for kings to go all the way. Sooner or later they back down & back out if you won't go their way. Once one king said to the Prophet, "Bless me, bless me!" And he said, "How can I bless you if you won't obey the Lord?" But he tried to make him bless him, see, because the kings know they are blessed because of the Prophet, because he is doing what God wants him to do.—1Sam.15:30.

41. So kings can be a real problem! For awhile they're a blessing, but as far as I ever remember, eventually they always become a problem. But don't look at it negatively, you can just figure, "Well, praise God, we were here, we met this king & he carried us this far on the road to this stage‚ & now he thinks he left us, but we've left him to go on with God!" That's the way you have to look at it! Don't worry about it.

42. Try to please them all you can. I did a lot of things for Fred that I wouldn't normally have done, & I didn't even think were necessarily the right thing or the best thing to do exactly. He finally got to where he wouldn't take any counsel or advice from me. For example, he wouldn't go colour on his TV show when I advised him to. He finally had to go colour locally anyhow, & he could have just as easily had his tapes made in colour. I told him, "You could beat all the rest of the Gospel shows, religious shows, church shows, if you'll go colour now, you'll be the guy they'll put on & not them!" But he said, "It costs too much money, Dave!"

43. I could have gotten him on first before all the rest of them if he'd have gone colour when I told him to!—And when he wouldn't do it I thought, "That's the end of him!" I told him personally, "Fred, you're on 300-&-some TV stations in black & white, & if you'll go colour‚ you will get there first & beat the rest of them to the punch & jump the gun on them so that you will be able to stay there in colour & beat them all! You won't have just 300 stations, you'll have a lot more than that! You'll have 600 stations, all of them‚ if you'll go colour now!—And until the other guys go colour‚ you'll have them all & you'll get a tremendous mailing list of contacts!"

44. But Willy & Fred's Benjamites persuaded him it cost too much money, "Dave is just dreaming, blah blah!" They didn't know a God-damned thing about what I was doing, they were just jealous‚ that's all! They were satisfied with their little show, with peanuts. They said, "It's already getting too expensive, even in black & white!—It costs too much money to send out all these films to the stations, we're losing a lot of them‚" & blah blah!

45. I said, "Fred, a lot of the stations are keeping your films, because even if you're not on regularly any more, they want to have those on hand so that if somebody else doesn't show up, they can put those on!—Then you're back on the air again! It's not doing any harm. So what's the film cost?"—In those days only a few Dollars. I said, "So if they keep it for a standby, you've got a chance to get on when you don't even know it & people can still hear it, see it, see the box number & write you! It's free advertising! So although you lose the cost of the film, you may get a giver to give you several thousand from that!" But no, he said, "We can't afford it! We can't afford the postage, we can't afford the film, blah blah!" They were really just excuses‚ they were just trying to find some way to get rid of me.

46. So I just told the Lord, "Well, Lord‚ You said `As David with Saul'! I'll stick with him as long as he does what You want him to do." But when he started minimising the ministry of preaching the Gospel to the whole nation, & saying, "Well, it's just too much, we've got too many people on the mailing list already & blah blah!"‚ I could see the handwriting on the wall! I said, "Fred, you're the man of the hour today, but if you don't go colour, you're going to be the forgotten man of yesterday!"—And that's exactly what happened!


47. If you follow the Lord you can never lose! And you can only go the way of a king & follow his way as long as it's God's way & you can use the king!—Even if he thinks he's using you! Always give them the impression they're using you‚ but all the time you know that God is using him.—And as long as he's going God's way, stick with him. If he starts going off the track, just keep right on going with the Lord & you'll not lose anything!—Except maybe a handicap!—Your king!

48. So don't worry about it!—Just flow along with it as long as they're going God's way & they're doing something the Lord wants them to do. And don't be afraid to let them think they're using you. That's what they always think. They may not say so, but that's really what they're thinking. I didn't mind if Fred used me for years. He was just using me, he didn't really care that much when it came to the showdown, between choosing me & God's way, or choosing the Benjamites & their way, & he eventually went their way. They have their people, we have our people. And you know what our people will do, they'll go God's way, regardless of the king!

49. Kings usually figure that they've got nothing to lose—but us—& they don't really know how important we are. They love the Lord & they want to serve the Lord, a little bit like church people, & they'll figure that with or without us they'll still be serving the Lord. Fred's still rocking along with his little ministry without us. (And now he's gone to be with the Lord!) But of course it doesn't amount to much. It only served God's purpose to get us started, & we've gone on from there far beyond his wildest dreams, but fulfilling the Lord's dreams, PTL! Amen?

50. So this is the way of kings! Don't be disappointed, don't feel bad if they don't go the way you think they ought to. Look at poor Samuel, he wept over Saul! Finally the Lord had to tell him, "Stop crying about that guy, I've got somebody better!"—1Sam.16:1. So don't weep when they don't do what you know the Lord wants them to do & they don't always follow your suggestions & they don't do this & they cause trouble about that & they want this & they get bossy about that.

51. Just rock along & go with them as far as you can, as far as they'll carry you, & then when it gets to the point where you can't, you'll graduate from the school of kings, the way of kings, & you'll become kings yourselves! PTL! You had your training. You've seen what a king is like & what he's not supposed to be like, & you've learned, so you'll be ready to be kings & priests unto God!—Rev.1:6; 5:10; 20:6. You learn a lot from kings! I learned a lot from Fred. I give him the credit for a lot that I learned.

52. So the moral of the whole thing is go their way as long as they're going God's way!—And when they don'tyou just keep going God's way, & you'll never lose! You know that! Just go on with God! You can't lose if you obey the Lord & go His way!—Amen?