Teens for Christ

It was that summer of 1966 when they first began full-scale distribution of the “Warning Tract”, containing the warning prophecy which David’s mother, Virginia Brandt Berg, had received in 1965, while visiting the ranch in Texas.

Fully awakened from a sound sleep by the voice of the Lord, she was told to get up and write:


Turn your eyes toward Memphis (Egypt), for out of it shall come the Great Confusion! The AUTHOR OF CONFUSION is even now marshalling his forces for this GREAT CONFUSION!

He is gathering his forces from a great nation and EASTERN NATIONS, friends that will join with him. So sudden will be the GREAT CONFUSION that it will cause a MIGHTY WIDENING OF THE EYES of those who have not discerned the signs of the times. But be YE not deceived!

BE PREPARED! And be not deceived by the GREAT SOCIETY, for it will come to travail and then bring forth the GREAT CONFUSION!


Even now, the skies are RED, RED with WARNING, and BLACK, BLACK with clouds gathering for the GREAT CONFUSION which is ALMOST UPON YOU!!

This revelation by Grandmother further enlightened and confirmed David’s message of Jeremiah against the Great Society, as one of its presidents, Lyndon Johnson, called it.

In his studies of Daniel chapter 8, David understood that the Antichrist, the Devil’s own son, was to come out of Egypt, and with the help of the red beast of Revelation, was to destroy the corrupt societies of America and the West, persecute and destroy the church, brand all his followers with a mark, destroy all who opposed him, and rule the world for a three-and-a-half-year reign of terror called in the Bible the Great Tribulation, just prior to the coming of Christ.

In the weeks preceding the team’s departure for New York, David put together the little Warning Tract of explanatory scriptures on the warning prophecy, also containing the message of doom of Jeremiah, and the endtime message of both Daniel and Revelation. He included such scriptures from Jeremiah as, “I will turn back the weapons of war that are in your hands (America’s), and I Myself will fight against you. ... I will bring an ancient nation upon you from afar, great destruction, cities laid waste, because you have forsaken Me.”

This message caused a great deal of controversy, but it was a message they felt needed to get out everywhere. They tacked them on every church door they passed along the way, handed them out in public places, private places, to individuals and crowds. Aaron even took a whole box of them to the visitor’s gallery at the United Nations and dropped them down into the General Assembly! But their main message was still salvation—the love of God in Jesus.

They spent that summer as they had many in the past, telling this message to everyone they met, everywhere they went. Usually they would run into a Christian who was incredu¬lous at finding young people out witnessing for the Lord, who would invite them to come to a meeting at his church to tell the other members about the work they were doing.

Josh would usually give his testimony, the others would sing, and often David would give the congregation the message of Jeremiah. They would try to get the Christians off their pews and out into the streets witnessing for the Lord. David said it was like trying to raise the dead! Occasionally they got mad, but usually it just went in one ear and out the other. It was largely unproductive, except that the Christians usually gave them a little offering, which managed to keep the little team fed and keep their tanks filled with gas.

They were nobody and nothing, and there was no reason for anyone to listen to them anyway—after all, they didn’t have any denomination, no one except the Lord. The Lord had told them, “If you will go in My name, and say only that I have sent thee, I will do great things which thou knowest not of.” So they went out just as teenagers trying to reach other teenagers, just teens for Christ going in the name of the Lord.

One preacher got up in his pulpit, and as he began to introduce them, suddenly realized that they didn’t have a name. Fumbling around, he looked at the handbill that they had printed up to explain their work. On the one-page brochure, the printer had decided to capitalize the first few words of the two explanatory paragraphs. The preacher looked down at the first paragraph, which read, “TEENS FOR CHRIST don’t make news like teens for crime...”, and seeing those first three words, he said, “TEENS FOR CHRIST are going to sing for you tonight.” They were teens and they were going out only in the name of Christ, so they took the name as from the Lord, and it stuck!

But they didn’t stick around any one place too long, and that was a good idea, too, since they had a repertoire of only two or three songs that they could all do together, and they used those same few songs at all their meetings. They were only musical amateurs at best, but they gave their talents to the Lord and He began to multiply them, not only with more songs, but also with disciples who stayed on to witness with the team—young people who had been attracted by their amateurish but inspired singing.

By fall it was time for Aaron and Faith to enter college, if they chose to. The education of David’s children had always been a major point of contention with his relatives, and he continually suffered criticism that he was ruining his children’s future by taking them out of school and traveling all over the country. But God had blessed the children’s intellectual attainments for David’s efforts and obedience, all four of them earning top grades in school.

Aaron, the older son, was a straight A student whose teacher told David when he graduated from high school, “He’s got to have a legal education; he’s got a mind like a lawyer!” Faith, also a straight A student, caught up with Aaron in correspondence school, and graduated with honors at 15!

Hosea was the dropout of the family, never completing the eighth grade, but David had seen to it that he received practical training working with great men and women of God. This gave him real faith and the ability to do such practical things as single-handedly manning their witnessing exhibit at the World’s Fair at only 15 years of age, where he was thought by some to be a midget, he was so mature and articulate and such a bold witness for the Lord. So, far from suffering from his lack of formal education, it actually gave him a head start, and by the age of 17 he had become the family’s spokesman and diplomat.

Would Aaron and Faith enter college? With their business careers and financial success at stake, as well as the draft that Aaron had to worry about, they both said, “no! There’s too little time left and we’re too busy winning souls for Christ. We haven’t got time to waste sticking our nose in some book!”

With conviction like that, they began to challenge other young people too. During this time, they were preaching “forsake all”—not to come with them, but to forsake all and follow the Lord as He led them. However, in special cases they began to make exceptions, and several young people joined them, staying with them for several months to learn how to witness.

Some who joined during that time did stay on, forsaking all, like Caleb, Josh’s 17-year-old brother who joined in New York City. Caleb’s breakaway from his parents was the first of what became the archetypical pattern. David said, “Caleb came to me in real bewilderment, saying that his parents had quoted him the Bible verse, ‘Children obey your parents’—and they wanted him to stay home (Colossians 3:20). He was really confused. ‘After all, the Bible does say that’, he said. ‘What am I supposed to do?’

“I told him, ‘That depends on whether you’re still a child or not. If you’re old enough to make the break but still can’t make it because of your childishness, you’d better stick with them! But if you’ve become a man and put away childish things, it’s time to go on with the Lord, no matter what Mama and Papa say’“ (1 Corinthians 13:11).

Of course, Caleb wasn’t quite old enough; he was only 17 and legal age was 18. But the government considered 17 old enough to join the army and die in Vietnam to support its war against the poor. So why shouldn’t he be old enough to fight in God’s army to help the poor?

David said, “Caleb’s folks threatened to send the police, since he was not yet legal age, but he finally took his stand for the Lord not to go back home. I told him that if the police came, he’d have to go, and that would not be his fault. But if he went home voluntarily, God would hold him responsible! I told him if he made his decision to stand up for Jesus, I’d risk going to jail with him! And his brother Josh, too, stood firm and encouraged him.” In his case the Lord spared him and the police never came, and he continued on serving the Lord.

Though the team spent many hours working with junkies and ex-junkies in the big cities of the East Coast, it was with kids like Caleb that they had their biggest success, winning many of them to Christ. When Faith met David Wilkerson, founder of Teen Challenge, at his drug rehabilitation center in New York City and told him about how they were reaching these younger kids, he said, “You are working with a harder group than I am. Drug addicts know they’re bad off and know they need help, but these younger kids, these bee-boppers, are just starting out; they aren’t bad off enough to need help.”

The real reason he and the church couldn’t reach the young people, Faith said, was because the youth needed a cause to dedicate their lives to full-time, and the churches just didn’t provide it!

Faith should know! She was a young person, only 15 years old, and what she was doing turned her on and filled up her life, and she felt it would do the same for others.

In fact, the next person to join the Teens for Christ when they went to Miami the following January was a despairing church kid who was looking for just such a cause, 16-year-old Lydia. Even though she had tried to serve God in her church, when she heard the team singing and speaking at a cafeteria in her city, their sample was enough to show her that she was hardly doing anything compared to what she should have been doing.

“At first,” she said, “I was afraid to talk to them because I thought they would only preach at me and tell me that I wasn’t doing what I was supposed to do, but when I finally mustered the courage to talk to Faith and find out what they were doing, it flipped me out. I told my mother when I went home that I had talked to an angel.”

Faith told her that they were going to a stock car race after the meeting to witness, and about how they witnessed on the beaches, in the schools, and everywhere they went, and she was shocked. She couldn’t believe that young people could be so on-fire for the Lord.

Lydia went home and prayed, “Lord, I want to have what they have. Just let me meet them again.” And of all the churches in Miami, the next morning when she walked in to her church, there was Caleb, talking to her Sunday School class.

She ended up bringing the whole team home with her, and some of them stayed there for two or three weeks. When she found that she could serve the Lord immediately, on the spot, without years of theological training, she decided to join them then and there, and ended up going through almost the exact situation that Caleb had been through.

The next month, February 1967, Josh and Faith were married in Orlando, Florida, by David. David also, at the same time, ordained the two of them, as well as Hosea, Aaron, and Caleb into the ministry—a ceremony practiced in the Bible. From there, Josh and Faith returned to New York to work independently for a few months, before rejoining the rest of the team, who had returned to the ranch in Texas.

They were also joined there by Grandmother, now an 81-year-old teenager. Many people might consider what David had already been doing, listening to voices and applying scriptures from the Bible for his guidance, to be somewhat eccentric. But now, through this little old lady and her insistence on hearing from God about everything, the Lord began to teach David to not make a move without orders from Him, and to hear explicitly and specifically the very voice of God and do exactly what He said to do, even if it seemed crazy as a loon.

Grandmother’s major ministry was a gift of prophecy while preaching, and the gift of healing, but in private, among her own family, God would often speak to her and give her personal prophecies for those close to her. However, Grandmother was often reluctant to give what the Lord had shown her, and would almost bend over backwards sometimes to avoid it. She would say, “I don’t want to tell you things like this, so specific it’s ridiculous. I don’t want to tell you these things, then have you try to live up to them. What if it doesn’t happen? Then you’ll blame me, or even doubt the Lord.”

But David said it always worked when they obeyed, and he later dubbed those months on the road with Grandmother “Ten Thousand Miles of Miracles”. At the beginning of that trip, the Lord spoke through Grandmother and told them to “Go northward, to the help of the mighty”—Ho and his team of Josh, Faith, Caleb, and Lydia, who had left to witness at the state fair in Wisconsin, in co-operation with the Christian Businessmen.

Even though it was God’s voice and David believed it, it was sometimes hard to obey and was often against David’s own logical reasoning. As he said, “We had no idea in the world of going northward with a big Dodge camper into the fall of the year and the cold and possible snow; it was the last direction we would naturally have chosen. And I questioned the Lord, ‘But, Lord, how will You feed us? How will we eat? They are only paying poor little Ho’s team their expenses, and we’re not even invited! These Christians will probably resent our coming!’“—which they later did! But the Lord said, “The widows of Zarephath shall feed thee.” (I Kings 17:9.)

Then in the north He said to them, “Divide! Divide! Divide!” One team was to go to the “Land of the South,” which was Ho and his team, to the Texas State Fair, and the other team with David and Grandmother was to go to the land which was “not thy own”—Canada!

The Lord even named the towns that they were to pass through, teaching David and the team to learn, listen to, and obey the voice of the Spirit.—And God would do the rest! How many times in the Bible the Lord told His prophets to do crazy, seemingly contradictory things, just to test them to see if they could believe Him. Why shouldn’t He operate that way today?

For example, He next told David’s team to go to the West Indies by the under waves, instead of the upper waves. One of the kids thought that meant by submarine, but David knew the Lord meant by boat instead of by plane, by the waves of the sea instead of the upper air waves, even though the boat was four times as expensive, especially for ten people, and made some of them very seasick.

But it was a test of their faith, to see if they were willing to obey. God did the miracle and provided them with the hundreds of dollars it cost, and though it was a very rough passage, He kept most of them from getting seasick, especially David and Grandmother, who were very seasick-prone!

The Lord also prophesied that from the West Indies they were to return and pick up Simeon, “whom you have left behind.” Simeon in the Bible was the brother who was left behind in Egypt, and in this case it was Ho, who had been left behind in the “Egypt” of America to work at the Texas State Fair with Faith, Caleb and Lydia. The prophecy continued that from there they were to go to the “Land of the Setting Sun (California), and there it shall be told thee what to do.”

On the way there, they stopped in Texas and had another visit with Grandmother, who had flown ahead to visit with friends. There the Lord said, “Before I told you to divide; now I tell you to unite; all of you go. Leave not one behind, for all your gifts and all of your talents will be needed for the new ministry that I am going to show you in the land of the setting sun.”

So Grandmother flew on to her little cottage in Huntington Beach, California, and the rest of them returned to the ranch to prepare to leave for California. Their preparations were considerably delayed, though, and they were there for two or three months trying to wind up their affairs.

By now, they had also begun to see the need for a place where they could bring their converts to train them, and the ranch in Texas seemed like the perfect place. It was just going to waste and needed to be used, and since they were already there, it was like a bird in the hand, and California just birds in the bushes.

So during this time when David began praying about the situation, whether to ask Fred for the use of the ranch as a training school, he had a dream: Mrs. Gunn, a prophetess of God from Miami and mother of one of the disciples there at the ranch, came to him and handed him a telegram. It read, “The world is full of fear and confusion, but be ye not afraid, for I have overcome the world. Faith is the victory that overcometh the world.” And oddly enough, it was signed by Fred Jordan!

A few days later this same woman actually arrived at the ranch, excited about a prophecy the Lord had given her about David; she had driven all the way from Florida to tell him about it. The prophecy was the 34th chapter of Ezekiel, and the Lord told her that it was about him, David:

Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel. ... Woe be to the shepherds of Israel that do feed themselves! Should not the shepherds feed the flocks? Ye eat the fat, and ye clothe you with the wool, ye kill them that are fed: but ye feed not the flock ... neither have ye sought that which was lost; but with force and with cruelty have ye ruled them. ... Thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I am against the shepherds; and I will require my flock at their hand and cause them to cease from feeding the flock; neither shall the shepherds feed themselves anymore; for I will deliver my flock from their mouth. ... I will both search my sheep, and seek them out. ... I will feed them in a good pasture, and upon the high mountains of Israel shall their fold be. Behold, I even I, will judge between the fat cattle and between the lean cattle. ... Therefore will I save my flock, and they shall no more be a prey. ... And I will set up one shepherd over them, and he shall feed them, even my servant David; he shall feed them, and he shall be their shepherd. And I the Lord will be their God, and my servant David a prince among them; I the Lord have spoken it.

excerpts from Ezekiel 34

Then Mother Eve got the scripture, “And the Lord spake unto Joshua saying, Command the priests that bear the ark of the testimony that they come up out of Jordan. Joshua therefore commanded the priests, saying, Come ye out of Jordan” (Joshua 4:16,17). This Scripture describes the people of Israel passing over Jordan into the Promised Land to claim the Lord’s inheritance, the land the Lord had given them.

At the time, David thought the Lord had just given him the prophecy of Ezekiel 34 as applying to their present situation at the ranch, and had chosen a passage with the name David in it to encourage his faith. The scriptures certainly did seem to fit, being an almost perfect allegory.

The chapter showed how God was going to judge between the fat cattle and the lean, and bring all His sheep to the mountains of Israel, where David could feed them. And the ranch itself was like “the high mountains of Israel” where they wanted to bring God’s flock to feed them. It was located on the highest of the hills for miles and miles around. Willed to Fred by his parents, it was to be used only for Christian purposes, so the ranch was literally like the “inheritance of the Lord”, like the land of Israel—the land, it seemed from Eve’s prophecy, that they were to pass over Jordan to possess.

But considering the situation at the time, David knew it would take a miracle! Fred had finally come around to doing a color show, but only an hour-long one with a sales pitch. David had tried to help him promote it, but the stations didn’t want it. He knew from all appearances that he was about to get the final axe from Fred. Still, he had had that dream encouraging him to have faith, signed by Fred himself.

Nevertheless, David wasn’t completely sure if they should stay there or not, so as a test of the will of the Lord, he wrote and asked Fred for total control of the Jordan property, and to even have it put in his name. Fred not only said no, but fired David again—this time for the last time!

Little did David dream that the Lord was then actually bringing him “out of Jordan” to go in to possess an even greater spiritual land, and that there were to be future fulfillments of these scriptures and dreams the Lord had given him, greater than anything he could have ever imagined.

But first the Lord wanted them to obey Grandmother’s prophecy, “Thou shalt go to the land of the setting sun and there it shall be shown thee what thou shalt do.” So finally, after months of delays, they left for California, arriving a few days before Christmas 1967, and that’s where they hit their all-time low!