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How You and I Came to Be Here – How Truth Came to the Church TODAY!

Download Link [su_audio url="http://sermons.wwcg-archives.com/05-16-1981-howyouandicametobehere-HerbertWArmstrong.mp3" width="100%" autoplay="no" loop="no" class=""] Well, greetings everybody. I’d better wait until I get this microphone on, so you can hear me. So once again I’ll say, “Greetings, everybody.” It’s been just about eleven years since I’ve been here, and I’m glad to be back in Melbourne once again. You have a lovely city here, and you also have quite a little larger number here than we had last time I was here. We’ve been growing, and I hope we have been growing spiritually as well as in numbers. I think I have a very important message for you today. I want to speak on how you and I both came to be here. Jesus Christ started the Church a little over 1950 years ago (or just about that) in the year 31 A.D. The Church jumped the track of the truth that He had given them between 53 and 70 A.D. The true gospel of Jesus was suppressed. A false counterfeit was substituted. Instead of preaching the message that Christ brought, they preached about the person of the Messenger. You’ve heard a lot about Christ; and Jesus Himself said many would come saying that He (Jesus) is the Christ, but deceiving the many. And that’s been happening now for more than 1900 years. It’s happening all over the world today. I think I saw out front, as we were coming, some people with some banners talking about a religion of fear. Well, let me tell you, the religion I want to bring you is one of faith, and one of hope, and one of a coming world peace such as no one dreams of, and one where everyone who ever did live (and everyone who lives today) is going to have a great opportunity to come into that world peace and come to have everlasting life. It’s just as far from fear as it’s possible to get. It’s too bad that some people can’t know the truth, but this is a very deceived world that we live in. Well, the true Church (as I said) jumped the track of God’s truth that Christ had given us. Now Christ gave us that truth through the apostles. Christ talked to many of the people. He preached to thousands while He was here, many thousands. But of all the many, many thousands to whom He preached, only 120 {1} believed what He said (as you find in Acts the 1st chapter and the 15th verse). Very few people ever believed Him, and that’s too bad. People don’t believe God. But why do people believe what they do today? THE EARLY CHURCH (PLAY FROM 4:16) Now the Church had to go underground by 70 A.D. All history of the Church had been sabotaged and has been missing ever since. We came to what is known as the lost century, so far as Church history is concerned. For about 100 years, there is no historic record of what happened at all. And about 100 years later (about 150-170 A.D.) we find a church calling itself “Christian” but just about as far from the Church that Christ had started as you could get. It was the Babylonian Mystery religion that had come in and taken over. They had taken the name of Christ and called themselves “Christian.” They had borrowed one thing of Christ that the Babylonian Mystery religion had not had, and that was grace for the remission of sin. But they turned grace into license to disobey. They did away with the law of God. They had done away with the message of Christ — the Kingdom of God. The true Church had gone underground. The true Church continued on. But it was persecuted. It was small in numbers. They had to meet often secretly. Sometimes they had to flee. Hundreds and even thousands were martyred. They were persecuted for their beliefs. They had to flee through the mountains of Europe and even of Asia. We come on down … Now let me tell you how they got the truth. The truth came from Jesus Christ, and Christ got it from God. Jesus said He had spoken nothing of Himself. He is the Word. He had said nothing of Himself the Father who sent Him — God the Father — had told Him what to say and what to speak. Now He called His apostles, and He taught them; and the Church got the truth through the apostles. That’s the way the Church got the truth. Now a generation or two later, the apostles weren’t there. I wonder if you ever heard of a game. I think they used to call it the whispering game. I don’t remember the name of it. I played it many, many, many years ago, when I was a young man. You get a group of people (oh 15, 18, 20 people) around in a line. One starts a little sentence of maybe, say 10 or 12 words, and he whispers it to the first one. That one listens, and then he whispers that sentence to the one next to him. And that one whispers the sentence as he thought he heard it to the one next to him. It keeps going on to the end of the line. By the time you get to the end of the line, the one who heard it says what he thought he heard; and it’s as far from the sentence the way it started out as you could get. Now when you get truth from man to man, and man gets it from other men, it gets distorted as it goes along. You hear a rumor. You get it 2nd hand, 3rd hand, 4th hand; and every time it gets twisted a little bit. Even the true Church had gotten its message that way. Now there were no Bibles at all extant. There was no printing. That came about 4-500 years ago. Even after printing came, a Bible was so rare they had to have a chained Bible so that people would come one at a time and look at it and pass on, but they couldn’t take it with them. There weren’t enough copies. Well, they did have Bibles for a while; but they were all hand-written. But even after printing, it was some time before there were enough Bibles. It’s only in the last 100 to 150 to 200 years that enough Bibles have been printed so most people can have it. Today the Bible is the world’s number one seller. There are more Bibles in more homes (and more other places where a Bible might be) than any other book today. And yet the Bible is probably one of the least read. It certainly is the least understood. It is the MOST distorted, maligned, twisted, perverted of any book that has ever been written; and people simply do not understand it. HOW PAUL RECEIVED THE TRUTH (PLAY FROM 9:27) Now, where did the apostle Paul get his truth? The apostle Paul had been trying to persecute the Church, even to the extent of having them killed and martyred. He was assenting to the stoning and the martyrdom of the first martyr, Stephen. He was, at least, agreeing with it. But Jesus Christ, who had ascended to heaven, had been given ALL POWER in heaven and in earth. And Jesus Christ is the head of the Church, although He is in heaven. And Jesus Christ struck the apostle Paul down with blindness. He fell down. He was on a walk toward Damascus. He knew immediately that something had happened to him. Christ spoke to him, and others with him; and told them to take him (although he was now blind) into Damascus, where a man was going to show him what to do. That woke him up, and he realized that everything he’d been believing was just the opposite of the truth. Paul later stated (in some of his writings in the New Testament) that he had been with Christ, that he had seen Christ actually. He also mentioned that he had been over in Arabia for three years, and that is the place where Christ in person saw him, taught him what he had. Everything that he had believed before was erased from his mind, and he started ALL OUT NEW and afresh with the truth of God. When he came back from Arabia, he went over to Jerusalem to compare with the apostles who had been taught by Christ when He was here in physical person (before His crucifixion) to see if they were speaking the same thing — because Paul had been instructed by Christ that we must ALL speak the same thing; and that “same thing” must come from God, through Christ, through an apostle, to us. That’s the way they got it. That’s the way we have to get it today. And when Paul came to Jerusalem, he talked to Peter and others there and found he had been told the same thing by the same Christ that they had been told, and they had absolute harmony and agreement. He wanted to be sure that they all had the same truth — direct from Christ. All right, since then, Christ in person has not spoken to any man. The next generation got the truth from those that had gotten it from the apostles. The 2nd generation and the 3rd generation got it from the generation just before them. And like the whispering game, they got a little less of it; and they got it a little bit twisted. So the truth and the doctrines in the Church (even in the true Church, now I’m talking about) became twisted and mixed up a little bit; and they began to loose a lot of the original truth. Now it’s hard to believe that; but that is what actually happened, my brethren. In the meantime, of course, the big church was going on — ruling over governments, and was part of the governments of this world. Now nearly all persecution has always come from government; and today it’s coming from the media, the public media (the press, radio, and television as well as from government). You can search all you want, and that’s where you’ll find the persecution is coming from. It was the government that persecuted Christ. You say the Pharisees persecuted Him. Yes, but they were in the government. They had lowly positions in the government of the Roman Empire. The Roman Empire was letting them do all of the minor work of ruling the government so that they didn’t have to have too many administrators over in the land of Palestine. Now that is the way it came on down. If I can get that light just right. I don’t see much of you out there. I just see the light up here. I vaguely see you out there. I know you are there. But I couldn’t see a single individual of you, to recognize you. However, I’ll go on speaking to you just the same. All right; now then, I came among … HOW TRUTH CAME IN OUR TIME (PLAY FROM 14:44) God first opened my mind, to look into the Bible and to study it, in the fall of 1926 when I was challenged both on the doctrine of evolution — which is taught in the colleges and universities of this world, and which is the eyeglasses (you might say) through which they see all truth today. Now the truth they know today is all mechanical, physical, materialistic. They have no spiritual truth whatsoever. The natural human mind cannot receive spiritual truth unless it is revealed, and it can be revealed only by the Holy Spirit of God. Very few have ever had the Holy Spirit of God, or very few have it today. But when I came among them, I came to see the truth in the Bible; and I want to tell you a little of my experience. Now Jesus Christ was the Word of God in person. The Bible is the Word of God in writing, in print. It’s the same Word of God. The Bible is the same Word of God and the same Words that taught Peter, the original apostles, and then taught the apostle Paul. But after that other people got it from the people that they had taught, and the next generation got it from the 2nd generation. The 4th generation got it from the 3rd generation, until they lost a lot of the original truth. Now I’d been brought up in a Protestant church; and, when I first began to be challenged on the law of God and the Sabbath of God (as well as on the doctrine of evolution), at first I came to wonder if there even was a God. I had to PROVE whether God exists. But to my mind it was proved! I found absolute proof that God does exist. The next thing is the Bible, the medium by which God reveals Himself to us and speaks to us. Now I had been in business for a number of years; and I knew, of course, that every manufacturer who has a product (a commodity that he sells) sends along with his product a little instruction book or an instruction manual to show you what the product is, how it operates, how to operate it, what its purpose is, how to make it perform its purpose. Alright, the greatest product every created or put together is the human being, and God is the Manufacturer of the human being; and God sent along an Instruction Manual. The Bible is that Instruction Manual. He tells us what we are, why we are, what we are here for, how we should live and why, and where we are going, and how to get there. Most people don’t know anything about that because they have never understood the Bible. The Bible is written in a way that it is mysterious to the world. Now the Bible is concerned with two things primarily. Of course, it has materialistic physical knowledge. It is speaking to material people, made of the dust of the ground. Therefore, it speaks to them in a language that they should be able to understand; the only language that they can understand, as a matter of fact. Human beings have accomplished a great many things in this Twentieth Century. We’ve flown to the moon and back. We’ve sent unmanned spacecraft to send back photographs right on the very close-up surface of Mars. We have close-up photographs sent back to the Earth from Saturn and Jupiter. We have manufactured some marvelous mechanisms (like the computer, the modern automobile, motion pictures, television) — many, many things that have come, not most of them in my lifetime, because we didn’t have any motion picture. We didn’t have any television or radio. In fact, we didn’t even have automobiles when I was a little boy. When I was eleven-years-old, no one had ever flown in the air yet. No human being ever had. But while I was eleven, during my … I was in my twelfth year when I was eleven, and it was during that year that one of the Wright brothers flew about as far as from one end of this auditorium to the other. That was the first flight a human being had ever taken. That’s the first flight, and I was eleven-years-old. Now, we’ve accomplished many things in a materialistic way. But we have also found our troubles have escalated. And the world is full of troubles and evils, and of suffering of every kind. And all of our problems that we can’t solve — all of our troubles and evils — are spiritual in nature. All of our accomplishments are physical and materialistic in nature. But the human mind is so constructed, without the Holy Spirit of God, it CANNOT understand, it CANNOT conceive spiritual truth or spiritual knowledge. Now the Bible is concerned with physical knowledge, but also with spiritual knowledge — and primarily with spiritual knowledge and spiritual truth; and the natural mind cannot understand that part of the Bible. And that is the main part of the Bible. So they DON’T UNDERSTAND THE BIBLE! They just don’t understand it. I began to see things in the Bible. First I read in Romans 6:23, “The wages of sin is death.” I said, “Well, that’s not true. I’ve always been taught the wages of sin is eternal life in hell fire.” Then I saw the next part, the last half of the same sentence, “The gift of God is eternal life.” Well, I said, “Why should we have to have eternal life as a gift when we are already immortal souls?” Then I began to see that the Bible says, “The soul that sins, it shall die.” I began to learn where Jesus said that no man has ever gone to heaven, and where the Bible teaches that no man ever will. The earth has God given to the sons of men, and we shall inherit the earth forever — not heaven. I began to see that what I had been taught was absolutely wrong. TAUGHT BY CHRIST (PLAY FROM 22:08) God did something to me that He did to the apostle Paul, way back there 1950 years ago. He just erased everything I had ever believed from my mind, and I started from scratch all over. Brethren, I know of NO OTHER religious leader in the WORLD — in these last 1950 YEARS even (today, or a hundred years ago, or a thousand years ago) — who ever came to his knowledge directly from Jesus Christ! Jesus Christ gave the truth to the Church through the apostles. The Church got it from the apostles. Other people (the next generation) got it from the apostles. The 2nd generation got it from that generation. The 3rd generation from the 2nd, and finally they lost a lot of it. Now the true Church still existed, and I came among them in 1927. They are called the Sardis Church in the 3rd chapter of the book of Revelation — the Sardis era of the Church. I found they had lost so much of the knowledge that God was opening to me in the Bible. Christ was speaking to me! This is the Word of God, the same as Jesus Christ in person is the personal Word of God. I was being taught by the same One. I find that other leaders didn’t get their knowledge out of this Book, the Bible. They got it from other people. Now just two or three days ago, the Pope of Rome — the head of the Catholic Church, the biggest church on earth and the largest in Christianity — he was shot in an assassination attempt. Alright, where did the Pope (looked on by many millions of people as the greatest religious leader on earth), where did he get all that he knows about religion? Where did he get his knowledge of what he believes is the truth of God, the doctrines that he teaches his people? He got it from other men. He didn’t get it direct from Christ. He didn’t get it direct from this Book. He was taught from a child on. Where did Charles and John Wesley get their knowledge that started the Methodist church? They got it from other people. They got an idea or two of their own that they added, and made it a little bit different religion than the others, and they started the Methodist church. Another man started the Baptist church the same way. They ALL got their religions from other people. Where do ministers get their religion today? They go to a seminary of their particular denomination, or their kind of religion; and there they are taught by other men. And I’ll tell you, if you go and examine the seminary, they are not taught by this Word — the Bible. The time had come at the end for God to raise up someone to raise up the temple that Christ is coming to (That is a spiritual temple, which is the Church.) and to restore THE TRUTH that had been LOST for 1950 years. Well, it was about 1900 years at that time because this was about 54 years ago. But just as it was in the days of the apostle Paul: Let me read you what Paul said, the same thing happened to me. He says here: Galatians 1:15-16 But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother’s womb, and called me by his grace, (16) To reveal his Son in me, that I might preach him among the heathen; immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood. He didn’t go to a seminary. He didn’t go to other men. He did not get the truth that he began to proclaim from other people! Galatians 1:17 Neither went I up to Jerusalem to them which were apostles before me. MIND SWEPT CLEAN (PLAY FROM 26:50) Now, I say the same thing. Neither did I, when God began to open my mind, go to other people. I did not go to a religious seminary. I went to this Bible. I began to find that EVERYTHING I’D BEEN TAUGHT WAS WRONG! AND I THREW IT ALL OUT. I began from scratch! Other people don’t do that. They take what they have, and they may change one or two ideas. They may grab one or two new truths. Most people won’t even do that. Instead of that, they lose one or two truths they already have. It was a different experience. And that’s how you came to be here today, and how I came to be here today. I want you to realize that: that God reveals His truth through Christ, and Christ reveals it through those whom He calls to be apostles. Now, it had gone down; and they had lost … I found that the Sardis Church still had the truth about the Sabbath day and the law of God to an extent. They didn’t have all of the truth even about the law of God. They still had the true name, Church of God. That’s all they had. They knew that we don’t go to a burning hell if we’re wicked. They knew we don’t go to heaven. They knew that Christ would come and there would be a thousand year reign on earth; but they had no idea what that thousand year reign would be like. They didn’t realize the truth about the Kingdom of God and what it will be like. We have a whole book on “The World Tomorrow — What It Will Be Like.” They didn’t know any of those things. God revealed all of that to me. God revealed to me about the annual Sabbaths. When I went to them and taught the Sardis people about that, they laughed me to scorn. God revealed to me the truth of who we are, that we are the lost tribes of Israel and the birthright tribes of Ephraim and of Manasseh. When I went to them about that, they refused to accept a bit of it (although their leader said he knew God had revealed that to me, and it was true, and God would use it some day.) But he couldn’t accept it. Because of political reasons, he couldn’t accept it for his position in his church. So that church never accepted it. But God raised up this Church through me, and this Church has accepted those truths. We had gotten rid of the errors, and swept it clean, and come to the truth of God; and that has not been done in 1950 years on the face of this earth. I just wanted you to know that. HIDDEN TRUTHS (PLAY FROM 29:58) Now then, I want to give you some truths that have been hidden from this world for about 1950 years. It is to them a mystery. It’s so mysterious they just don’t understand it. In a world, there’s a gigantic missing dimension in knowledge. The knowledge they teach in schools, and in colleges and universities, is all together materialistic knowledge. It is knowledge just for this present mechanical, materialistic, existence that we have, which is not Life. (But I’m coming to that. Let’s go on.) Man today does not have Life. Man only has a temporary physical, physio-chemical, existence. We are made from the dust of the ground. We get our life through the blood circulating in our veins, through the breath of air; and we have to constantly refuel by eating food and drinking water, usually about three times a day. In other words, we have a temporary existence. It is not life. Now that’s the first point I want you to get. We do not have … As we are born, we do not have Life. We have a temporary existence, and it comes out of the ground. We are like an alarm clock, wound up, that is constantly running down. When it runs down, it stops. It’s dead. In other words, human beings have a temporary existence. They are running down towards death. They are dying gradually every day they live, and every human being is one breath away from absolute death — the cessation of life. I know. I’ve gone through it, almost four years ago. My breath stopped. My face was all blanched, a different color. I don’t remember because I wasn’t conscience. I believe it was blanched white, whatever it was. They brought me back by mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, but for {2} a great many seconds I was not breathing. There was no circulation of blood. My heart was not beating. I was as dead as you can be. But they brought me back. I’ve gone through that experience. I don’t fear death any longer. I just don’t. I hope God will keep me alive for a little longer because I believe it is needful for you. THE ORIGIN OF LIFE (PLAY FROM 33:19) Man does not have REAL LIFE. (I can’t even read my own writing here.) No, he doesn’t know how to obtain it. He doesn’t have real Life, and he doesn’t know how to obtain it. All life has to come from God. The very first law of biochemistry, which is a scientific law, is that life comes only from life. Life can’t come from dead matter or from the not living. It only comes from other life. God has Life inherent in Himself — self-containing Life; and He has Life to impart and to give. Now it’s important that we understand how all life comes. Everything begins with God, and the world doesn’t know anything about God. Do you know that of all the religions in the world — not only Christianity; but you can take Taoism, Shintoism, Mohammedism, all of the religions in the world — and you know not one of them knows who and what God is. They do not know who and what God is! Alright, let’s go a little farther. They don’t know what man is, or why he is. They don’t know why man was ever put on the earth or how he came to be here. They don’t know whether he was put here for a reason, for a purpose. They don’t know why or what lies ahead, where we are going, or if we are going anywhere. They just don’t know. The religions don’t know. Science doesn’t know, and education doesn’t know and doesn’t impart that knowledge. You don’t get that in the colleges, or the universities, because they don’t know. Now, if we want to know about God and about the very start of Life, we don’t start with Genesis 1:1. We start in the New Testament with John 1 and verse 1. John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. Alright, “In the beginning was the Word.” The Word was a divine, supernatural, spirit-composed personage — a Word that had LIFE, was immortally alive, was inherent self-containing Life. Not a temporary existence, but immortal Life. The Word was a personage. That Word was with another personage called God. There you have two personages together. But the Word also is God. So both of Them are God. But one was just called “God” and the other was called “The Word” originally. Now, the next verse: John 1:2-3 The same was in the beginning with God. (3) All things were made by him [That is, by the Word.]; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In Ephesians 3:9 … Well, now wait. Before I go to that, the {3} 14th verse: John 1:14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth. The Word became Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is the One who originally HAD ALWAYS EXISTED, and He had existed as God; and He was with God. His name originally was The Word, which means He was the divine Spokesman. John 1:3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. Now in Ephesians 3: 9, we read that God “created all things by Jesus Christ.” God is the Maker. God told Christ what to do. Christ is the Word. He spake, as one of the Psalms says. The Holy Spirit, emanating from God and from Christ, is the POWER that actually did what Christ said to do. That is the way Creation came about. That is the way you and I were formed, made out of dust of the ground, and got our temporary existence that we have. ANGELS CREATED FIRST (PLAY FROM 38:12) Now then, let’s go a little farther. Remember that God had Life inherent, and this Word had Life. They were composed of Spirit, not of matter; and They are Creators. The first thing that They created was angels. There was no matter. There was no universe. There was nothing physical. There was no matter. But They created angels first. Now let’s go a little farther. I want you to notice in Genesis 1:1 now (the 1st chapter of Genesis, and verse 1) — the beginning of the Bible: Genesis 1:1 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. That should be the plural. As Moses wrote it in the Hebrew language, this word is plural — heavens. He created the heavens (That’s the entire universe.) and the earth. Now the word here says “God.” That’s an English word. Moses wrote in the Hebrew language, and the word Moses wrote was “Elohim” in the Hebrew language; and Elohim means … It is a uni-plural word meaning more than one person forming one God. It’s a word like family, like group. There can be a number of people forming a group, but it is still one group. You can have two people, you can have five people, in a family — more than one person; but it is only one family (the Jones family, the Smith family, the Anderson family): One family, but more than one person. There is one GOD, and ONLY ONE GOD; but that one God is composed of more than one personage! The Word is one of those personages, from all eternity; and the other (called God) is a personage. Now, Jesus was born of the Virgin Mary and was made flesh. He — the Word — now came as a human being. He gave up all of His divine great power, and came to be a mortal human being; but He still was God as well as man. He was “God with us.” And then God the Father became His Father, after Jesus was born as a human being (begotten of God, and born of the Virgin Mary). God created the whole universe. He created matter. “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” Turn to the 2nd chapter of Genesis and verse 4. Genesis 2:4 These are the generations of the heavens [plural] and of the earth [See, the heavens and the earth] when they [Both the heavens and the earth. That’s the whole universe, including the earth.] were created, in the day that the [Eternal] God made the earth and the heavens. IN THE SAME DAY He made the earth and the heavens. Now that may have been billions of years ago. We don’t know how far back that was. But there is one thing we do know that the Bible does reveal. Most people have never found, because you don’t get all of the Bible in one place. It’s like a jigsaw puzzle, a little of it … You have many pieces, and you have to put all the pieces together, so one of the pieces is here. Another piece is over in the book of Job, in the 38th chapter and beginning with verse 1. Let me read you a little of that, in Job the 38th chapter, where Job had just created the greatest building on earth — the great pyramid. Job was the master craftsman that hired all of the men and supervised the building of the great pyramid. He did it for a pharaoh of Egypt. He was not a pharaoh. He was not an Egyptian at all. But he was a very great man, and he was a very self-righteous man; and finally God was speaking to him and sort of whittling him down to size because he was very self-righteous. Job 38:1 Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind, and said [to Job] … Job 38:4 Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? Job had laid the foundations of the greatest building on earth, but God (Jesus) had laid the foundations of the ENTIRE EARTH! – The One who became the God of the Old Testament. In the Hebrew, it was called Yahweh. It is here called “the LORD.” Job 38:4 Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? Declare, if you have understanding. Job 38:6 Whereupon are the foundations thereof [of the earth]fastened? Or who laid the corner stone thereof? Now the only building on earth where the cornerstone is the top capstone (the last stone to be laid) is the great pyramid. And, actually, that top capstone never was laid. It isn’t there. But on the earth it was laid (but not on the great pyramid). “Where were you when I laid the cornerstone thereof?” Job 38:7 When the morning stars [or angels] sang together, and all the sons of God [And the only “sons of God” at that time were the angels, because He created them. And all the angels … ] shouted for joy? So the angels had already been created before the earth. The earth was created the same time as the rest of the universe and all of the galaxies, the entire universe; and there they were at the earth, and shouting for joy. Why? Because the earth was to become their abode, and they were to be put here and to live here on the earth! It was very beautiful as God originally created it. But now they did something to it; and they marred it, so that it was not beautiful any longer. THE LAW OF LOVE (PLAY FROM 45:02) Alright, God now was going to develop character into the angels. He put them here to improve the earth, and to even make it more beautiful. In the earth, of course, was matter; and some of that matter contains energy. There’s a lot of energy in the material earth. They were to do things with the earth to improve it, and really to finish it (although it was beautiful as God turned it over to them). But God put the angels on earth; and, in order to supervise their lives together one with another, God set over them His government. Now God has LIFE. God lives. The next question is: HOW DOES GOD LIVE? He lives the way of out-flowing love. There are different ways you can live; and primarily there are just two different philosophies, or ways of life. I call one the way of “give” — out-flowing love. The other is incoming lust, and incoming greed, and coveting; and I call that “get” (so that even a little child can understand it). God’s way is out-flowing love. Now, He has a law; and that law is love. There are two divisions of God’s law. That is, love to God is the first part of it, in worship and in obedience; and also love to your fellow creatures by out-flowing love towards them, cooperation, helping, serving, sharing with them altogether. Now the opposite way, then, is rebellion against God and fighting against your neighbor, trying to take away from him and get from him, get everything for yourself, trying to have all you can and get, the way of competition, the way of strife, the way of what we have on this earth (so much of today), violence, and destruction. God set a throne on this earth, and He set a super archangel on that throne to govern the angels. That archangel’s name was Lucifer. He was the super archangel, of a higher grade of creation than the ordinary angels. He had been on the very throne of God. His wings had covered over the very throne of God in heaven. He had been instructed by God, and he knew the way of God — the way of love. Every government is based on a foundation, a constitution, or a basic law. Now what do you have in Australia? I don’t know. In the United States, we have a Constitution; and ALL LAWS have to be based on that Constitution. It’s the basic law. Other laws are based on it. The law of God is out-flowing love — love to God, love to your fellow beings. And then you can define it. In the case of men, it finally was codified in the Ten Commandments. The first four tell you how to love God: The last six, how to love your neighbor. That is the law of God. Alright, now in the 14th chapter of Isaiah, you’ll find about this Lucifer — how he was put on earth. His name was Lucifer. And, let’s see, Isaiah 14. (I don’t think I have it. No, I’ve got it wrong … Here I have it.) Isaiah 14:12-13 How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! … (13) For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven [So he was below heaven. He was on the earth.], I will exalt my throne above the stars of God … He had a throne. There was a throne on earth, and he was sitting on it TO RULE THE WHOLE EARTH with the government of God! And the government of God was founded on a constitution, which is the law of God, the way of give, the way of out-flowing love. Isaiah 14:13-14 I will exalt my throne above the stars [or angels] of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north [where God’s throne is — in the far, far north. That’s the only thing we have in the Bible that tells us anything about where God’s throne is, God’s heaven.]. (14) I will ascend above the heights of the clouds [So he was below clouds. He was on earth!]; I will be like the most High. [Or, he was going to become the Most High.] RESULT OF ANGELS’ SIN (PLAY FROM 50:37) Now you read more about him in Ezekiel 28, and beginning with verse 14, where it says: Ezekiel 28:14-15 Thou art the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have set thee so: thou wast upon the holy mountain of God … [And verse 15:] (15) Thou wast perfect in thy ways [all thy ways] from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee. God created him, and he was perfect in the way he lived UNTIL he turned away from the way of God and REBELLED. Rebellion seized him, jealousy, envy against God, competition, strife. He wanted to war against God; and he turned his angels into an army, and they swooped up to heaven to knock God off the throne. He wanted to rule. He wanted to rule the entire universe. He wasn’t satisfied with this one little earth down here. He wanted everything! (We have too many men like that today.) Now he was perfect from the day he was created. He was not a born human being. He was a created archangel. And iniquity was found in him. His heart was lifted up because of his beauty. Ezekiel 28:17 Thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness. He became perverted in mind and everything. Lucifer then became Satan the devil, and his angels all became demons. As a result of their violence and their wrong way, physical destruction and decay came to this earth. Instead of beautifying the earth, they made it ugly; and it came to a very decayed state. Now his angels sinned along with him. In II Peter 2:4 you read, “if God spared not the angels that sinned.” So God didn’t spare them either. The angels all sinned and followed Lucifer. Now there came to be darkness and decay on the face of the earth. Now we go back to Genesis 1 again — the 1st chapter of Genesis and in verse 2: Genesis 1:2 The earth was [Or, became. That same word is translated “became” elsewhere] without form, and void … The Hebrew words Moses wrote were “tohu” and “bohu.” A better translation than “without form and void” would be “chaotic and in confusion,” “waste and empty” or “desolate and decayed.” That is not the original created state at all! That is the way it became after the angels had been here, and they may have been here millions of years. We don’t know. We don’t know how long they were here before they went the wrong way. Now, the earth then came into a very devastated state and condition and very ugly. In the 104th Psalm and verse {4} 30: Psalm 104:30 Thou sendest forth thy spirit, they are created: and thou renewest the face of the earth. Psalm 104, verse 30 — God sends forth His Spirit, and He renews the face of the earth. The Spirit goes forth, and He does His creating. Now go back to Genesis 1. {5} The earth had become in this chaotic condition. Genesis 1:2-3 And darkness was upon the face of the deep. [It was all ocean surface, no land. All was ocean, and it was chaotic.] And the spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. [Now, He sent forth His Spirit. Then the Word speaks.] (3) And God said [That was the Word who did the saying.], Let there be light: [The Holy Spirit came forth.] and there was light. THE CREATION OF MAN (PLAY FROM 55:23) Now, in six days God RENEWED the face of the earth FOR MAN! Now God was going to create man out of matter! He had created angels. He had set His government over them. They (1/3rd of them) had turned wrong and followed Satan. Now God was going to do the most … the greatest feat of creation possible. God was going to reproduce Himself. He was going to take dirt, matter (made out of matter, material earth). He was going to form and shape it into a man in the same form and shape as God. Out of that man, ultimately, He was going to have man reproduce; and out of all of the millions of men that would be reproduced, He was going to ultimately convert millions of them into God Beings — just like God Himself. (No religion on earth understands this. No religion understands it whatever.) In six days, God remade the surface of the earth for man. In verse 26 of Genesis 1: Genesis 1:26 God said, Let us [Not “Me.” You see, it’s Elohim, more than one person forming God — God and the Word. “Let us … “] make man in our image, after our likeness. Animals were made after their own kind — cattle after the cattle kind, dogs after the dog kind. But now He was making man after the God kind, altogether different. But how did He form man? God is made of Spirit, but not man. In the 7th verse of the 2nd chapter of Genesis: Genesis 2:7 The [Eternal] God formed man out of the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man [what He formed out of the ground] became a living soul. So a soul came out of the ground! A soul is not an immortal soul. A soul is mortal and comes out of the ground. THAT’S WHAT GOD SAID. The devil said, “Oh, no. You won’t surely die. You are an immortal soul.” The churches today all believe that. They believe the devil. They don’t believe God. But God made the soul out of the dust of the earth. THE TWO TREES (PLAY FROM 57:55) Genesis 2:8-9 The [Eternal] God planted a garden eastward in Eden [In the very next verse here.]; and there he put the man whom he had formed. (9) And out of the ground made the [Eternal] God to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of [the] knowledge of good and evil. Two special trees! There were a lot of other trees; but these two are very special, and they are symbolic; the Tree of Life that symbolized the Spirit of God. If Adam had taken of that, he could have taken immortal Life. Now remember, Adam was only created out of the dust of the ground with a physio-chemical temporary existence; a physical, physio-chemical existence, out of the dust of the ground. Now let’s drop down to verse 15: Genesis 2:15-17 The [Eternal] God took the man, and put him into the Garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it. (16) And the [Eternal] God commanded the man, saying, of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: (17) But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for [if you eat of it] you shall surely die. Now, He gave him freely the Tree of Life! All he had to do was reach out and take it, and he would have had immortal Life. But God was not going to let him do that unless he denied and made a choice between that and the other Tree. The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil simply represented the way Satan had been living. Satan did not agree with God’s way of living. God’s way of living is out-flowing love. The Tree of Life would have given him the love of God shed abroad in his heart — the love to fulfill that law. The Tree of Life would have given him the Holy Spirit that would have opened his mind to spiritual knowledge, so he would know HOW TO LIVE spiritually. The Tree of Life would have imparted divine Life to him! But He made man — man and woman — “male and female created He them,” and He told them to reproduce and replenish the earth. It had been “plenished” before with angels. He said, “and replenish the earth.” [Genesis 1:27-28] HUMAN REPRODUCTION (PLAY FROM 1:00:26) Now let me tell you a little something right here. Do you know how you came into being? Every one of you originally started with an ovum in your mother’s ovary, in one of the ovaries of your mother. That ovum had only a temporary, physical existence — just a short existence of not more than 28 days. It could not have existed longer than 28 days. Every time an ovum left your mother’s ovary, by the time it went through the fallopian tube and got into your mother’s uterus (or womb) it died there unless it had been fertilized by a male sperm cell. God made it so that the male and the female work together. The male’s sperm cell, coming from the very body of the male, a sperm cell is only 1/50th of the size of an ovum. An ovum is only the size of a pinpoint, the same as a period at the end of a sentence of ordinary small type in a newspaper. The sperm cell coming from the human father, to give it physical human existence and reproduction, is only 1/50th as large; but it imparts life. If that life is imparted within that 28 days, then that ovum becomes an embryo. And that’s what you became and what I became (every one of us) in our mother’s womb. For 4 months we were an embryo. At the end of 4 months we became a fetus, and we had begun to take on human form and shape in our mother’s womb. A head began to appear. Arms and legs began to appear. A heart began to form, and lungs and other organs in the body. They began to develop over the next 5 months until you had come ready to be born. You came out into the world, and you were born. You gave a cry of “Whaaa, whaa” when you were first born because that first breath hurt your lungs. Also with that first breath came a spirit into you that imparted the power of intellect to the physical brain that had been born and that had grown within your mother. Now then, during that 9 months that you were first an embryo and then a fetus, you had to be fed on physical food to grow large enough to be born. That came through your mother. We today are in the Church, and the Church is “Jerusalem … above … the mother of us all” your Bible says. [Galatians 4:26] So the Church is the mother of us all. The duty of the Church is to feed and nourish the brethren in the Church on SPIRITUAL FOOD. We have to grow spiritually. (I’m going to come to more of that, if I don’t forget it, later. I want to explain that.) But, you see, there is physical reproduction. SPIRITUAL REPRODUCTION (PLAY FROM 1:03:56) Now God is reproducing Himself, and that is SPIRITUAL REPRODUCTION. God made us. Listen, that ovum {6} coming out of your mother’s ovary, it had a nucleus in it. Each of us is an ovum; and each of us has a nucleus, and that’s the physical brain. But there is a spirit in that physical brain. That spirit in man — I call it a human spirit, because it is in man and is not in animals — imparts the power of intellect that brute animals don’t have. (We call them dumb animals.) But it only empowers you to think and reason about physical, material, things because it acts as a computer and it stores up the knowledge you have, and it gives you instant recall of all of the knowledge that you have. But how do you obtain knowledge? You obtain knowledge through the eye (things you see), through the ear … Now the spirit doesn’t see. The spirit in you doesn’t hear. The brain hears through the ear. The brain sees through the eye. The brain smells through the nose. You only get knowledge then through what you see, or hear, or smell, or taste, or feel (by the sense of touch). You can’t get any other kind of knowledge in your mind normally and naturally. You just can’t. You can’t see spirit. You can’t hear spirit. You can’t taste it, smell it, or feel it. So you can’t get spiritual knowledge in your mind, and it can’t come unless you have God’s Spirit. Now the coming of God’s Spirit is the coming of the sperm cell from the very body of God into you, and that comes in with the spirit in your brain and enlightens your brain now to understand spiritual knowledge. No wonder the people in the world don’t understand spiritual knowledge. You know that the most highly educated people in the world, with the greatest degrees of letter after their names, are the most ignorant — because they don’t have any spiritual knowledge. They’ve been educated in a lot of materialistic knowledge. They don’t have any knowledge of spiritual things. ALL OF OUR PROBLEMS AND TROUBLES AND EVILS ARE SPIRITUAL in nature and so they can’t solve them. The greatest minds can’t solve our problems in this world. That’s where our troubles come from. Now God is reproducing Himself. The way He reproduces is the Holy Spirit is the sperm cell from God that imparts immortal GOD-LIFE into us. That was offered to Adam, but Adam first had to decide he would LIVE that Life in the way of God of out-flowing love to help him be happy: Out-flowing love towards others that would help him make his neighbors happy. His neighbors could only have it too if they would have that spirit of love, which would make him happy and make them happy; and we would all help one another. We would have peace. We would have cooperation. We would help our neighbors to produce more. They would help us to produce more. We would share, and we would all have much more. Oh, how much more we could have if we lived that way; and we would have a utopia; and we would have peace. But, no, man has got to fight his neighbor. Man has to live the other way. That’s the way Satan showed. Adam let his wife Eve lead him to take to himself, of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. That meant he decided for himself the way of life. The Holy Spirit would have showed him GOD’S WAY OF LIFE, would have opened his mind to understand the SPIRITUAL KNOWLEDGE of God’s way of life. Adam rejected that and instead took to himself the idea that whatever knowledge he could produce in himself of how he thought he ought to live. And there was Satan there to lead him in the way of competition, the way of strife, the way of hostility, the way of vanity, the way of glorifying the self, the way of selfishness, and of lust, and of greed, of vanity, of envy and jealousy towards others. And that’s the way humanity has been living ever since. That’s where our problems are. That’s where our troubles are. Now then, God intended that man should take of the Tree of Life. It was freely offered to Adam, but he had to reject the way of Satan! He could have restored the government of God to earth and Adam could have sat on that throne of the whole earth, and ruled it over his own children. But instead he went the way of Satan. TREE OF LIFE SHUT OFF (PLAY FROM 1:09:40) Now then, what happened? In Genesis 3 and verse 22, after Adam made that decision: Genesis 3:22 The [Eternal] God said … now, lest [Adam] put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever … If he did that, he would live forever in the way that was making him unhappy, the way that would make him miserable, the way that would bring sorrow, that would bring suffering and pain and anguish on him and on his neighbor. And his neighbor would live that way and bring pain and suffering on themselves and on Adam. And every man would harm and make every other man unhappy. And, lest he do that and live forever in that kind of misery and unhappiness: Genesis 3:23-24 Therefore the [Eternal] God sent him forth from the garden of Eden … (24) … and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword [pointing every way], to keep the way of the tree of life. GOD SHUT UP THE TREE OF LIFE! GOD SHUT THE HOLY SPIRIT OFF FROM MANKIND. Adam sinned; and that cut him off from God. Adam’s son, Cain, sinned and killed his brother, Abel and then he lied to God about it. He brought on himself the penalty of death, and shut himself off from the Spirit of God. He shut himself off from God. God didn’t shut Himself off from man, but man shut himself off from God. But God shut up the Holy Spirit — the giving of Life to man; and all man can have now is a temporary physio-chemical existence until the Second Adam could come. That’s until Jesus Christ could come. Now right here is where Christianity jumps the track. Life — the Holy Spirit — was shut up until the Second Adam could come and pay the penalty of man’s sin in his stead and reconcile man to God, wipe the slate clean so that man could RECEIVE the Spirit of God, when man would start to live the right way to have eternal Life in happiness and in peace. The churches don’t know that. The churches of this world don’t know it. The religions of this world don’t know it. Humanity doesn’t know it. Our educators don’t know it in your colleges and universities. The scientists don’t know it. Your captains of industry, your bankers, and your industrialists don’t know it. They only know material, physical things and business, manufacturing out of material goods and things like that. That’s all they know. So here’s where they jump the track — “until the time of the Second Adam.” AFTER THIS THE JUDGMENT (PLAY FROM 1:12:52) Alright, now then we want to turn over to Hebrews the 9th chapter and verse 27. Hebrews 9:27 And as it is appointed unto men once to die … God said to Adam, “If you take of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, you will surely die.” He did. He was like an alarm clock running down. He ran down after 930 years, and then he died. He only lived 930 years, and he never got Life in all that time. So, it says: Hebrews 9:27 And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment [by a resurrection]. Other scriptures point that out, and tell us that ALL who died in Adam are going to be resurrected in Christ and are going to come to a judgment. When? After Christ has paid for our sins, they will have a chance to give account for what they had done; and, if they repent, they will be given a time to prove their repentance and that they want to live God’s way by a certain amount of time, whatever God will give them, in mortal life. And, if they do, they will have the Holy Spirit and be given immortal Life. That’s the kind of “a religion of fear” that we believe in. I wish that some poor simpletons, like people with signs out front, could understand some of the truths of God. Too bad! Now, judgment was on Adam; but he made the wrong choice. When judgment comes on people, they have to make a choice; and they have to determine which way they are going to go. LIFE was offered to Adam, but he made the wrong decision; and eternal Life was withdrawn until the Second Adam, Christ. So we read in I Corinthians 15 now, and verse 22 (if I can find it here). I Corinthians 15:22 As in Adam all die [We all die. We have this temporary physical existence, and we all die in Adam.], even so in Christ shall ALL be made alive [in a resurrection to judgment]. It’s appointed to man once to die, and after this THE JUDGMENT; and that will come by a resurrection through Christ: (Through Christ.) EVERY MAN IN HIS OWN ORDER (PLAY FROM 1:15:59) I Corinthians 15:23 But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits [He rose from the dead 1950 some years ago.], afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming. That’s only the Church, only the few that are going to be resurrected to immortal Life at Christ’s coming. Now I’m coming to more about that in just a minute. I have to cover these things one at a time, to show you what God’s whole program and plan is in a way that I think you’ve never heard it put this way before. Adam and universal sin cut humans off from … Well, God cut us off from the Holy Spirit or from Life until the judgment. But, through Christ, judgment has been opened first to the Church of God. Judgment is on us, and we are given an opportunity to repent and accept the sacrifice of Christ, have our sins forgiven, and now the Holy Spirit is open to us. I Peter 4 and verse 17: I Peter 4:17 For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God [or the Church of God. That is the “house of God.”] We are the first. We are the firstfruits and the first to have salvation. The world as a whole does not have it yet. Now understand this: Through Adam (try to understand this, brethren) through Adam the world was cut off from the Holy Spirit. But through Christ judgment and access to the Holy Spirit was opened up to the CHURCH, and not to any but the Church! Now I want to show you something — a prophecy back in the book of Joel. Joel 2 and in verse 28, where Joel (an Old Testament prophet) made this prophecy: Joel 2:28 It shall come to pass afterward, [says God] that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh. God shut up the Holy Spirit after Adam’s sin; but the time would come when He would pour out His Spirit on all flesh. Now first judgment starts on the Church, after Christ; and it only started at the time of Christ, and only on the Church. Now there’s something more there I’ve got to come to right away. On the day of Pentecost, in Acts 2 and verse 17 {7}, Peter was giving a sermon; and he said this. The Holy Spirit, which they saw coming as flames of fire sitting on the heads of each of them, they heard the sound like a rushing mighty wind, and they were quite excited as the Holy Spirit came that day — the first time the Holy Spirit had been opened up since Adam. And he said: Acts 2:16 This is that which was [prophesied] by the prophet Joel … And he quoted the scripture of the prophesy I just read that the days would come when God would open; He would pour out His Spirit upon all flesh. Now then, that was only the start — just to the Church only. Physical existence now began with Adam. Well wait a minute; before I come to that I want to mention this: that God called the Church of the Old Testament; but the Holy Spirit had not been poured out yet, and they did not have Life. They did not have the Holy Spirit. They had the knowledge of God. They had the law of God. That was spiritual but they were carnal, and they never did comprehend it and they never did obey it spiritually. They just never did. And they had no Life. They are to be resurrected. They died, and “after this the resurrection.” Judgment will come to them in the Great White Throne Judgment. We celebrate that on the last day, after the great Feast of Tabernacles — on the Last Great Day. GOD’S ANNUAL FESTIVALS (PLAY FROM 1:20:38) Now, physical existence began with Adam. But LIFE — or eternal Life — began with Christ. Israel was a type, or duality, and was given the seven annual festivals to picture this whole Life. The Passover, for instance, pictures the sacrifice of Christ to pay the penalty for … [A loud crashing noise was heard.] What was that? Are you hearing me all right? [Someone in the audience answers, “Yes.”] I thought something had happened to the microphone here or something. Anyway, (I have to catch my place, where I was, here for a minute.) the Passover pictures the crucified Christ so that our sins can be paid in our stead, making it possible (if we do repent, and if we believe) that we can now receive the Spirit of God. Now the second annual festival, or the seven Days of Unleavened Bread, which we had a little over two weeks ago; and that pictures putting sin out of our lives. That pictures the fact that we must begin to GROW SPIRITUALLY. We must be fed on spiritual knowledge. Now we have a SPIRIT LIFE, and that must begin to grow in us. Then the third festival is the time of the coming of the Holy Spirit. We can’t put sin out of your lives alone, by ourselves. We have to have the help of God and the Holy Spirit. And we are the firstfruits. The day of Pentecost is merely, it was called originally in the Old Testament the feast of firstfruits; and we are the firstfruits — showing that God has called the Church and the Church only, FIRST. Not the whole world! Now Jesus said: John 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which sent me draws him. Now get that! The world cannot have salvation now. It has not been opened up. It is only those that were predestinated to be called now. Others will be called. Everyone who ever lived is going to have a chance! Everyone is going to be called. Everyone can find eternal Life, who ever lived. I don’t know whether Adam had his whole judgment then, or whether he’ll have a chance {8} in the Great White Throne Judgment. I don’t know. But nevertheless, everyone will have had a chance; and either Adam did have, or he will have. The fourth annual festival is the first day of the 7th month, the Feast of Trumpets. That pictures the Second Coming of Christ. The Church will then be born, as He was, by a resurrection at Christ’s coming; and we will be God Beings, the same as Christ is. We will then rule the world, when He will begin to convert all that are still alive (in this mortal life) on earth. That will reign for a thousand years. They’ll be having children, and population will grow during that thousand years. {9} The Millennium: The Feast of Tabernacles pictures that thousand-year rule and reign with Christ. Satan will be put … Well, I skipped one. The fifth is the Day of Atonement. That means the putting of Satan away so that Christ and the Kingdom of God can rule a thousand years. That’s the fifth of the festivals. The sixth is the Feast of Tabernacles, or the thousand-year reign with Christ on earth — the Kingdom of God ruling; and the seventh is Day of Judgment at the end of the thousand years, when ALL who have ever lived are going to be resurrected, and they are going to have their chance to repent of the way they did. They are going to be called to give an account for every evil thing they ever did. But, if they repent, they are going to find that the blood of Christ has already paid the penalty in their stead. They will be given a little time to see if they mean it, if they say they want to live the way of THE LAW OF GOD — the way of out-flowing love. They’ll have to prove it by their performance. Now we come to Hebrews 9 and verse 27: “As it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment.” I read that once before. DIVINE GOD-LIFE (PLAY FROM 1:26:16) We are called now. Those of us called now, you’ll read in Ephesians 2 and verse 1, have been “dead in trespasses and sins.” In other words, we have been dying every day we lived. We have only had a physical existence up to this time. But now we are going to have a chance to have the Spirit of God. The Spirit of God will open our minds to understand the Word of God and the way to live — according to God’s way of out-flowing love. The Spirit of God will be the love of God in our hearts to fulfill that law. The Spirit of God will be the POWER of God to help us to overcome Satan and to live that way. And the Spirit of God will impart to us divine God-Life! We will rule with Christ as God Beings. But the thing I want to point out is this: the Church is called first, now; and we start a new Life. It’s beginning… just as you were born, you started a physical life. We start a new SPIRITUAL LIFE from the time the Holy Spirit comes into us. The Holy Spirit in us opens our mind to understand the SPIRITUAL TRUTHS in the Bible. The world cannot understand. God is only CALLING A FEW NOW! A few that are predestinated: As Christ said: no man could come to Him except God the Father draws him, and God is only drawing a few. Judgment is not come to the world. The chance of the world to understand these things has not come. God’s Spirit cannot be poured out on the world as a whole at this time; but only on those that are called — in the Church. Brethren, I wonder if you realize what a precious thing it is that we, of all the people in the world, have been called out from the world. Now the word “Church” comes from the Greek word “ecclesia.” It means a group, but it also means “called out ones” — called out from the world to be separate in this way. Not to be separate to wear a funny kind of hat or a garment. Not to be separate in physical things; but to be separate in understanding the spiritual truth of God, in understanding the way of Life of God — out-flowing love towards others. We have to express that, and we have to grow. We have to GROW in grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. Just as I explained to you how we grew in our mother’s womb before we are born, so now in the SPIRITUAL REPRODUCTION, we have to grow in spiritual truth. The Church is the mother that feeds us, and we have to grow spiritually day-by-day. Now in the world they feel that if (Christianity feels that if) you just accept Christ, hocus-pocus you’ll be saved. You can live any old way you want to the rest of your life; and, when you die, you’re going to go to heaven. Now that’s all wrong. In the first place, no one’s going to heaven. In the second place, just receiving Christ alone isn’t enough. You have to repent of your sins. You have to begin to WALK with Christ; and two can’t walk together except they be agreed. You’d better begin to agree with Christ to walk with Him. The world is not walking in THAT WAY, but we are to walk that way. GOD’S GOVERNMENT IN THE CHURCH (PLAY FROM 1:30:38) We are being fed and nourished. God has raised up this Church at this time in order that we will be in that first resurrection and will become God Beings in the Kingdom of God. And the Kingdom of God is the Family of God, which will RULE with the government of God. When Christ comes, He will RESTORE THE GOVERNMENT OF GOD on the earth (that Lucifer took away). The government of God has not been operative on earth since Lucifer rebelled. The government of God is operative on earth and administered only one place, and that is in this Church; and that is GOVERNMENT IN THE CHURCH, and it comes from God the Father. From God the Father it comes through Christ. And from Christ it comes from the apostle that He Himself has chosen, and that He PREPARED, and that He educated, and He trained; and through whom He’s given you the truth and the knowledge. And then there are others under me — to help you, and to feed you, and to bring you on to a SPIRITUAL growth and a SPIRITUAL maturity, and developing the very CHARACTER of the living God. That is the purpose of our lives. Then we will have the responsibility of helping to save the whole world at the time of Christ’s coming, and we are coming closer to that all the time. I don’t have time to go into prophesy and things like that. But we are getting very close to the time of the end of this present time and this present age. We are coming very close to the time when God is going to intervene in the world affairs of this world, and when He is going to take over. Christ will come, and the devil will be put away; and then we shall reign. Without any Satan here to deceive you, the world is going to learn the truth of God. There’s so much more of this, so many little details. I haven’t time to fill all of them in. Your local ministers will have to do that from time to time, and from Sabbath to Sabbath. You’ll have to do it in your study. We’ll try to get it to you in our various publications. And by the way, brethren, do you know that we have more publications than any church on earth, I believe. So far as I know, we do. There is The Plain Truth, with a circulation over two million — reaching the world, and also for our own brethren. Then we have The Good News, a magazine reaching our brethren, and also some coworkers and a few that are interested besides. Then we have The Worldwide News, which reaches only our own brethren and gives us news of Church activities; news of various people in the Church and people that you’ve met at the Feast of Tabernacles and things like that; and also news (every two weeks or so) of how the Work is going on, and what is happening in this Work that we have to do and in the Church. Then there is The Pastor General’s Report that goes out every week to your ministers. There’s much in that that they can take and give to you in a Sabbath sermon. Then we have for the children, we have the Youth ’81 — a magazine for youths (primarily those from, say, about age 12 on up to and through 18). Of course, we have Ambassador College; and we’re opening Big Sandy again (as a junior college) this autumn, so we’ll have the two college campuses. We have so many other activities that other churches do not have — like the Feast of Tabernacles, and these festival services and meetings. Then we have books, and pamphlets, and many booklets on various subjects to feed you on the truths of God. But we must GROW SPIRITUALLY! Just having accepted Christ is only the start! It’s only the beginning. If you don’t go on from there, you will die spiritually; and you’ll just die period. Some day you will be as though you had not been. You will be ashes under the soles of the feet of those that do grow, if you don’t continue to develop and grow in spiritual character day-by-day, week-by-week, year-by-year. THE TRUTH OF GOD (PLAY FROM 1:35:53) That’s what I wanted you to know, and I wanted to give you this message. How you get the truth. How you came to be here. It comes from God. It comes through Christ. Christ has imparted it to His apostle. I don’t know of any apostle from the time of the original apostles until today and where Christ Himself … Christ taught me by this Word. But He taught me in a way that I had to rid my mind and sweep it clean of EVERY religious belief and doctrine, and thought, that I ever had; and get it out of the Bible, pure and simple. That’s what I am passing on to you. Brethren, I hope you realize how we are organized. There have been times when every man went his own way, the way that seemed right in his own eyes. One man this way, another man that way, another man this way — every one going off his own way. Paul teaches us we must all speak the same thing. That thing comes from God the Father. It comes through Christ. It comes through the apostle. Through the apostle it comes down through your other ministers, and through our literature, and our magazines, and our ways of printing that we have today — to you, so that you get GOD’S TRUTH pure and simple. No other church on earth has it! No other church has EVER had it for 1900 years or more. I want you to realize how wonderful it is, how blessed we really are. Well, it’s been a blessing for me to be here. I haven’t seen you; I haven’t been here with you, for eleven years. I don’t know whether it will be another eleven, and I don’t know that I’ll still be here 11 years from now. I hope that Christ will be here before that time. I don’t know. I don’t know when He’ll be here. I know He can’t be here within 3 ½ or 4 years. It’s going to be longer than that. And beyond that, we don’t know. We know we are getting close to the time. That’s all we know. And we know that we’d better be prepared to rise with those that will be raised from the dead, to rise and meet Him as He is coming — coming in clouds. And His feet are going to stand that same day on the Mount of Olives; and I hope we’ll all be there with Him. So if I don’t see you again until then, I’ll see you then, brethren. I hope we will; and I hope you realize the real seriousness of everything that I’ve said to you today, and how serious it is. Now, we’ve had some trouble in this Church here within the last year. Trouble had been brewing for a long time, but within the last year this Church has been put back on the track; and I hope we are back on the track where we belong. I hope you realize where the truth comes from, how God channels it on down to you, how you get it. It is in {10} your Word, the Bible. If you see something you disagree with, go to your pastor with it. If he sees something, he must go to those that are higher up above him, or he can come to me about it. If I am wrong anywhere, I want it to be set right; and you’d better believe it — that I don’t want to be wrong. And you’d better not want to be wrong either. We want to have the truth, and be right, and know what is right. So with that I am going to say good-bye. We’ll be on our way now over to New Zealand, to see the brethren over there. I believe … I’m not sure I understood it correctly. I believe that one or two other of our Churches and groups are tuned in, and have been hearing this with you. I’m not sure; if so, I bid them ‘God speed’ the same as you. {1} Editor’s note: Mr. Armstrong stumbled around with the number he was trying to recall. He said, “only a hundred and ah, I mean, yes, only a hundred and a … What was it? 130? All of a sudden that skips my mind.” But then he gives the scripture that tells the correct number, which is 120. {2} Editor’s note: At first Mr. Armstrong said, “but for some little … ” But he then corrected himself and continued. {3} Editor’s note: Mr. Armstrong said the 12th verse; but he meant the 14th verse, and that is what he read. {4} Editor’s note: Mr. Armstrong inadvertently said “verse 31;” but he read and was referring to verse 30. {5} Editor’s note: Mr. Armstrong said to go back to Genesis 2, but he meant verse 2 of Genesis 1. {6} Editor’s note: Mr. Armstrong stumbled with his words here. {7} Editor’s note: Mr. Armstrong said Acts 2:15; but he undoubtedly was referring to Acts 2:17, where Peter quoted Joel 2:28. {8} Editor’s note: At first Mr. Armstrong said: “I don’t know whether Adam had his whole judgment then, or whether he’ll have a chance in the Millennium;” but then he caught himself and said correctly “[or] in the Great White Throne Judgment.” {9} Editor’s note: Mr. Armstrong had two false starts here in his speaking, when he said “At the end of the thousand years … And that’s pictured by the fifth … ” {10} Editor’s note: Mr. Armstrong said “your Word.” Of course, he was referring to God’s Word, the Bible; but he undoubtedly meant your personal copy of it.]]>

Is Christ Starting a Second Church? Read This to find out!

IS CHRIST STARTING A SECOND CHURCH? by Herbert W. Armstrong page 1 Good News December 4, 1978 HOW MANY CHURCHES does God have at one and the same time? The dissidents following A MAN, Garner Ted Armstrong, are now speaking out of both sides of their mouths. They KNOW that God condemns leaving God’s Church and following a MAN. So, in an effort to take members away from God’s Church, actually THREE false claims are being spread. 1) They are spreading the LIE that Garner Ted Armstrong is only doing the same thing his father did – FALSELY claiming I left the “Sardis” church to pull away their members and so start a church of my own. The long article recently appearing, on “How the Worldwide Church of God Came into Being” [GN, Nov. 6], ought to NAIL THAT LIE! a) I did not leave them, for I have never been a member of them; b) I continued working alternately with their two main divisions – Stanberry, Mo., and Salem, W.Va. I was still working with them in 1945, 12 years after the present “Philadelphia” era came into being, 1933. Note that in this he concedes the seven churches of Revelation 2 and 3 were consecutive eras, as well as seven continuous conditions in the one Church. 2) Again they admit the successive eras depicted in Revelation 2 and 3, claiming that my son is now starting the “Laodicean” era of the Church. But God does not start His Church or any era of it by one disfellowshipped for causing division, sowing the seeds of discord among brethren, and then attacking God’s Church and trying to draw away its members after him, on pretext of being a CHURCH – when those few are only following A MAN. It is NOT a Church! It has no apostle, evangelist-pastor-elder organization. It is NOT proclaiming Christ’s Gospel into all the world for a witness unto all nations! It is a MAN, with one or two working with him, merely seeking to take away members of God’s true Church. 3) Then they speak out of the other side of their mouths, I am grieved to say. This time, they say Revelation 2 and 3 do NOT portray seven SUCCESSIVE stages or eras of the one true Church. Apparently they try to explain, or twist its true meaning, by saying seven is God’s number of completeness – therefore there are now MANY churches, as Roman Catholic, Methodist, Baptist, etc. – all of which COMBINED constitute the BODY OF CHRIST. Anyone who believes that had, perhaps, better get into one of them, or follow a man who has incorporated himself to be a church. But a legal corporation does not make it GOD’S CHURCH! It might be interesting, at this point, to explain the TOTAL DIFFERENCE between what Garner Ted is now doing and what his father did in 1930. He has incorporated under civil law, under a church name as a starter. This was done to try to draw away members from the true Church to follow him. The Oregon Conference But what his father did was totally different. In Oregon a number of members of the Church of God, Seventh-Day, headquartered at Stanberry, Mo., pulled out and incorporated themselves separately as the Oregon Conference of the Church of God. They became a SEPARATE CHURCH, operating with their own tithes, directing and paying salary to their own ministers. They were ORGANIZED. They did not understand God’s form of organization – they had no apostle, but they did employ evangelists – as Robert L. Taylor, Roy Daily and myself – and later, Sven Oberg and A.J. Ray. Their form of organization was a board of trustees, with a president, vice president and secretary-treasurer. The board was in authority – not the ministers. Shortly after the Oregon Conference separately incorporated, a division occurred in the Stanberry church, and approximately half of their members followed Andrew N. Dugger into a new church based at Salem, W.Va., and named, simply, “Church of God.” In August of 1933, I renounced the salary from the Oregon Conference, but did not leave their fellowship. In fact, later that August a new church was established at Jeans schoolhouse, 12 miles west of Eugene – all but one family my own new converts, and that family not attached to either Sardis group. BUT, more – most of the Oregon Conference members began coming to Eugene to fellowship with the new Radio Church of God (now the Worldwide Church of God), and I continued, as a voluntary service, to preach Sabbath afternoons at the schoolhouse near Jefferson where they met. I never sought to pull away any of their members. They were enamored with the new Salem-based church, and a little later – (not now sure of the date) probably 1934, while the Radio Church of God was on the air and The Plain Truth being published – they abandoned their Oregon Conference and went in with Salem. Parent Church grows At, and just west of Eugene, the parent church of the Worldwide Church of God was very much alive and growing. I was leading elder, and I had appointed and ordained an assistant pastor and a deacon. We counseled seriously on the matter and decided, in early or mid-1934, not to go in with the Salem people – and we had never gone in with Stanberry. However, a little later I agreed to cooperate and work with the Salem ministers. And under this arrangement I continued as pastor of the members who formerly were the Oregon, Conference, but now were joined with Salem. BUT NEITHER I NOR ANY OF THE EUGENE MEMBERS ever joined the Salem Church – or Stanberry. I received no salary or compensation of any kind from them. On my part it was a VOLUNTARY GIVING of time and effort and cooperation, with no remuneration of any kind. Later – it was either 1945 or 1947 – probably the latter – the former Oregon Conference members had a division. I had ordained two elders and two deacons in their local church near Jefferson, which I pastored. Half of them, including one elder, a Mr. Davidson, and Mr. Henion, refused to meet with them further, though I urged them to remain with the Salem people. Meanwhile, about half of all the brethren in the Willamette Valley had remained with Stanberry. They asked me urgently to unite then with the half of the Salem people who had refused to remain with the Dugger group. For a while I refused. But it left only a small membership still with the Dugger division, and I finally agreed to organize them and serve as their pastor – although the Stanberry brethren kept their membership and sent tithes to Stanberry, while the Henion family and others, including the Coles, counted their membership with the parent church of the Worldwide Church of God – and Mr. C. Wayne Cole is still with us in the very important capacity of director of ministerial services. I continued to pastor the Stanberry-based group in the Willamette Valley until probably in 1942, when I spent some months in Hollywood starting the DAILY radio broadcasting and speaking Sunday afternoons to a packed house at the Biltmore theater. I had GIVEN them my time and services freely, at my own and Eugene church expense. I sought none of their members and none came with us – though as brethren we still had love one for the other. Incorporation becomes necessary And I did not start out by incorporating myself pretending to be a church. We, in the growing Church of God – then Eugene-based – finally had grown to a size where incorporation became a necessity. IN NO WAY is Garner Ted doing as his father did, and any claim that he is, is a point-blank lie resorted to, to DECEIVE God’s people and present the REPREHENSIBLE things Garner Ted is now doing in a good light. It is Satan who tries to make us believe that wrong is right. But now what about the seven churches of Revelation 2 and 3? I have always said, and still affirm, that these seven messages to the seven churches are picturing in advance the seven CONDITIONS to be found in the ONE CONTINUING TRUE CHURCH – but with the Ephesian condition dominant during the first era or years of time, the Smyrna condition becoming dominant in the next period of time, and so on with the Laodicean condition outstanding in the same true Church at about the time of the great tribulation and climaxing with Christ’s second coming. To expound that fully requires more space than I have here. It will be covered later. But the crux of the whole matter is simply THIS: Where, in all this effort at persuading God’s people to follow Garner Ted Armstrong, a man DISFELLOWSHIPPED, who did, and is continuing now from without, to sow the seeds of discord among brethren – in all their arguments, WHERE IS GOD? WHERE IS JESUS CHRIST, living HEAD of the Church? One thing I can say definitely and with authority, God and our Head, JESUS CHRIST, have NOT left God’s one and only TRUE CHURCH. These dissidents are LOOKING AT MEN! They are leaving GOD out of their thinking. For 44 YEARS the living JESUS CHRIST HAS BEEN HEADING, LEADING, GUIDING AND BLESSING GOD’S ONE AND ONLY TRUE CHURCH! HE has not forsaken it. HE is not in ANY effort to pull members out from GOD’s Church, where CHRIST is working. HE is NOT following Garner Ted Armstrong, who resorted to a conspiracy to water down God’s TRUTH – to SECULARIZE God’s Church and college – to literally PUT GOD AND CHRIST OUT OF THE COLLEGE AND CHURCH! HE is not! Will You? Some were leaving Jesus when here in the human flesh (John 6:66), “… many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him.” Would you have been one of them?]]>

OPINION: Attending a "Church of God" group? There is a danger, WATCH OUT!

Revelation 3:14-22 “(14) And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God;

(15) I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot.

(16) So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.

(17) Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:

(18) I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see.

(19) As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.

(20) Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.

(21) To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.

(22) He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.

Revelation 11:3-4

(3) And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days, clothed in sackcloth. 

(4) These are the two olive trees, and the two candlesticks standing before the God of the earth.

Revelation 1:20

The mystery of the seven stars which thou sawest in my right hand, and the seven golden candlesticks. The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches: and the seven candlesticks which thou sawest are the seven churches.” TWO WITNESSES OVER TWO CANDLESTICKS- TWO CHURCH ERAS ONE: Philadelphia TWO: Laodicea Zechariah 4:1 “And the angel that talked with me came again, and waked me, as a man that is wakened out of his sleep,”You and I are committed, as Co-Workers together with the living Christ, to the greatest and most important activity on earth today! This Work of God was originally started by ONE man — Jesus Christ. But on the day of Pentecost, A.D. 31, the same Holy Spirit that had carried on God’s Work through his individual body entered into and empowered his apostles, and the entire COLLECTIVE BODY, which on and from that day constituted God’s Church. The Church of God, of which Jesus Christ was, and is, the living HEAD, was commissioned to carry on the Work of God in an organized manner — starting out with the TWELVE apostles. What is the Work of God? First of all, it is the great commission — to proclaim the MESSAGE Christ brought for mankind from heaven and taught his disciples. Secondly, to minister to, and feed with the spiritual food of God’s Word, those whom GOD converts and adds to his Church. But, after proclaiming that gospel MESSAGE to the world of that day — after the Church had grown and multiplied in number and power, the headquarters Church at Jerusalem fled in the face of advancing Roman armies shortly before A.D. 70, became scattered, and under persecution — and because of discouragement because Christ had not yet returned in power and glory — the Church WENT TO SLEEP ON THE JOB of proclaiming Christ’s true gospel message! Satan then filled the world with his COUNTERFEIT “gospel.” The world accepted it as the genuine. You’ll read, in the parable of the l0 virgins, Matthew 25, how, while Christ tarried in heaven and did not return to earth as soon as they expected, THEY ALL SLUMBERED AND SLEPT on the job of carrying on God’s Work. But now the “midnight hour” spoken of in this parable has struck. Christ’s return is drawing near. He has raised up YOU, and all our Co-Worker family, to give to the world the cry, “The Bridegroom is COMING.” The KINGDOM OF GOD is at hand. The WORLD TOMORROW is about to dawn!” Quote from Herbert W. Armstrong, Co-worker and Brethren Letter October 25, 1985   Zechariah 4:1 “And the angel that talked with me came again, and waked me, as a man that is wakened out of his sleep,” AFTER the period of time where the Church SLUMBERED AND SLEPT. Zechariah 4:2-5(2) And said unto me, What seest thou? And I said, I have looked, and behold a candlestick all of gold, with a bowl upon the top of it, and his seven lamps thereon, and seven pipes to the seven lamps, which are upon the top thereof:

(3) And two olive trees by it, one upon the right side of the bowl, and the other upon the left side thereof.

(4) So I answered and spake to the angel that talked with me, saying, What are these, my lord?

(5) Then the angel that talked with me answered and said unto me, Knowest thou not what these be? And I said, No, my lord.

THIS IS SPEAKING OF ONE CANDLESTICK. Or Church Era, that will appear at the end of the period where the Church SLUMBERED AND SLEPT, or the Philadelphia Era! Now of this one Candlestick, or Philadelphia Era, there are TWO INDIVIDUALS standing beside the Candlestick, feeding the Candlestick the golden oil, fueling the lamps. Zechariah 4:11-14(11) Then answered I, and said unto him, What are these two olive trees upon the right side of the candlestick and upon the left side thereof?

(12) And I answered again, and said unto him, What be these two olive branches which through the two golden pipes empty the golden oil out of themselves?

(13) And he answered me and said, Knowest thou not what these be? And I said, No, my lord.

(14) Then said he, These are the two anointed ones, that stand by the Lord of the whole earth.

TWO ANOINTED ONES, who FEED ONE CANDLESTICK, or the PHILADELPHIA ERA of the Church of God. When Zechariah the prophet of God asked the angel of God what this vision meant, this vision of one candlestick with the Two Anointed Ones feeding it, the angel replied: “Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This is the word of the LORD unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts. Who art thou, O great mountain? before Zerubbabel thou shalt become a plain: and he shall bring forth the headstone thereof with shoutings, crying, Grace, grace unto it. Moreover the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, The hands of Zerubbabel have laid the foundation of this house; his hands shall also finish it; and thou shalt know that the LORD of hosts hath sent me unto you. For who hath despised the day of small things? for they shall rejoice, and shall see the plummet in the hand of Zerubbabel with those seven; they are the eyes of the LORD, which run to and fro through the whole earth.”(Zechariah 4:6-10) So the Two Anointed Ones are in the office of ZERUBABBEL. They are building up the SPIRITUAL TEMPLE OF CHRIST, the Church of God, that candlestick you see being fed by these two men of God. What Church is the Philadelphia Era? UP TO THIS point I have covered events preparatory to the actual beginning of this “Philadelphia era” of God’s Church, The WORLDWIDE CHURCH OF GOD.”- Herbert W. Armstrong, Article: The History of the Beginning and Growth of the Worldwide Church of God, Published in The Good News Magazine September 1980 The Worldwide Church of God, God’s Church today, THIS PHILADELPHIA ERA is the CANDLESTICK spoken about in Zechariah 4. Now let’s study a little more on these “TWO ANOINTED ONES”. They are pictured FEEDING THE WORLDWIDE CHURCH OF GOD. John 17:4-8(4) I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do.

(5) And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.

(6) I have manifested thy name unto the men which thou gavest me out of the world: thine they were, and thou gavest them me; and they have kept thy word.

(7) Now they have known that all things whatsoever thou hast given me are of thee.

(8) For I have given unto them the words which thou gavest me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came out from thee, and they have believed that thou didst send me.

John 17:17-21(17) Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.

(18) As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world.

(19) And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth.

(20) Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word;

(21) That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.

John 6:63It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.” God the Father gave to His Son Jesus Christ, His Word. Jesus Christ passed the Father’s Word unto His apostles, and sent them out into the world to preach that Word. The apostles faithfully preached that Word, and the Church was raised up by and through the Holy Spirit of God. It was the apostles who “fed the Church, the golden oil, representing the Holy Spirit.” Pictured in Zechariah can only be speaking of TWO APOSTLES of the Worldwide Church of God. Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong was used by Christ to RAISE UP the Philadelphia ERA of God’s Church, or the Worldwide Church of God, the spiritual TEMPLE Jesus Christ will return to and MARRY! He fulfilled the role of the FIRST ANOINTED ONE. The role of the Second Anointed One will be fulfilled by another APOSTLE. Now who can this apostle be? He is none other than the FIRST WITNESS of Revelation 11. The Two Witnesses are over two candlesticks. Philadelphia and Laodicea are the last Church eras mentioned in the book of Revelation. So, the first witness must be over Philadelphia, and therefore is this SECOND ANOINTED ONE of Zechariah 4. Now, the Philadelphia Church is promised PROTECTION, and is taken to a place of Safety, to be protected during the Great Tribulation.(Revelation 3:10; Revelation 12:14) There they are fed and nourished. Who is feeding this Church, during the great tribulation? Christ is feeding them through the MAIN WITNESS! Pictured in Zechariah 4! Now back to the message unto the Laodiceans in Revelation 3. Christ is knocking on the individual’s door, calling upon them to open the door and eat with Him. This cry unto them comes from OUTSIDE. Since the death of Herbert W. Armstrong, we have seen various of different Churches rise up, calling themselves the Church of God. This happened in the first century. The Catholic Church rose to the top of numerous splinter groups, and became the dominant Church joined with Rome, persecuting the small, scattered yet true, true Church of God. The Catholic Church first called themselves “the Catholic, or Universal Church of God”. They wanted to be established above the true Church of God, who had been preaching the gospel worldwide at that time. So they called themselves “universal”, wanting to set themselves up over all others. This indicates that perhaps the true Church regarded themselves in the first century as the “Worldwide Church of God”. Is it also interesting, that while Christ raised up Herbert W. Armstrong to restore all things(Matt 17:11) as the end time Elijah, that the name of the Church was ALSO RESTORED! Now, in Malachi 3:15, it reads: “And now we call the proud happy; yea, they that work wickedness are set up; yea, they that tempt God are even delivered.” Now every one of these COG Groups do not teach wholly the teachings restored and taught through Herbert W. Armstrong. They pick and choose what they want to believe. Throw some teachings away, water down others, or begin teaching a new doctrine to replace the older established doctrines of Christ. These “churches” calling themselves the Church of God, are those who were “set up” to do a work of wickedness. Much like how Simon Magus “set up” his counterfeit church against the true Church in the first century. GTA mirrored him in the 20th century, after being disfellowshipped from the Worldwide Church of God, in going out to form a “corporation”, joining with Caesar and calling his corporation a Church of God. He created his counterfeit Church. So under these counterfeit Churches, not the true Church, the membership are NOT being fed spiritually by Christ! Since these are “counterfeit churches”, they have “Some truth”. Just as a branch that is broken off from the tree retains “some nutrients” from the mother tree. Since it is broken off, it no longer receives further nutrients from the Mother tree, it withers and dies. The Laodicean brethren feel they must show “love” to those who were aborted from the Church. They are lured into , and they attend with these false groups. Jesus Christ is calling unto them to REPENT, and come out of Babylon’s churches, to become PHILADELPHIAN! This is the Philadelphian Era of the Church. This message is specifically to the “angel of the church of the laodiceans”, the leader over the laodicean CANDLESTICK, or the second witness. Compare with Joshua the High Priest of Zechariah and Haggai. They have a church of their own now. In the OUTER COURT. They are doing their own works, producing fruits today. Because they call themselves the Church of God, yet deny Christ’s leadership over them(Through the apostle, Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong) which causes them NOT TO BE FED SPIRITUALLY, they are “Spewed out” into Great Tribulation. They aren’t completely Philadelphian(Hot) nor are they completely like this world(cold). Because of this Laodicean condition, they are SPEWED OUT, and not protected during the Great Tribulation. Their ERA, begins and rises through and out of the Great Tribulation. Those who REPENT, begin to obey God, produce proper works, and fruits, and therefore their era is an era of God’s true Church! The second witness will lead their repentance, and they will begin working the Work of God. The Philadelphia Era will be protected, at this time, in a place of safety, under the MAIN WITNESS. Those today, who have the laodicean condition, are congregating in false churches, trying to perform A WORK. A different work. But not performing their part in the work of God, as Philadelphians. Have you ever wondered WHY, these false churches are teaching that it is the “Laodicean Era”? They believe that the Philadelphia Era died with Mr. Armstrong, and that since they are in a new era, they have to find NEW LEADERSHIP! That is why these false churches teach this. To satisfy “Itching ears who want to heap upon themselves teachers”. Therefore they join these false churches who have been “set up”(Malachi 3:15) to deceive them! But God’s Word says we are STILL IN THE PHILADELPHIA ERA. And the one true Church, that same candlestick fed by Mr. Armstrong, is STILL the Worldwide Church of God! We are still commissioned to BACK And SUPPORT Christ’s apostle, Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong! Garner Ted Armstrong started the teaching his new false church of being in the Laodicean Era. That should help you figure out where this new false doctrine came from. It came from Satan the Devil, not from Jesus Christ. And Jesus Christ is calling upon our brethren in Revelation 3, who are falling into the laodicean condition, to REPENT and be grafted back with the Philadelphians, and allow Christ to feed them through His Two Anointed Ones! The Main Witness begins his commission at the beginning of the Great Tribulation. The Second Witness, will join him giving testimony. Therefore they two witness are pictured as the Two Candlesticks in Revelation 11. Today, God’s people who are being drawn into these false churches, calling themselves the “church of God”(Rev. 3:9), are being called upon to REPENT, and COME OUT OF HER, or be spewed into Great Tribulation by Christ Himself. The only true Church is the same Church that Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong was a member of and an apostle of. The Worldwide Church of God. That is the only candlestick ordained by God. IT is a SPIRITUAL organism, unincorporated. Under Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong, the Church used a “Legal corporation” to gather money, property together to be used by Mr. Armstrong and his team in the Great Work of GOD! To preach the gospel of the Kingdom of God to all the world as a witness to all nations! That job of preaching WAS FINISHED! Only the apostle was commissioned to do the preaching! We, the Worldwide Church of God, ARE TO BACK AND SUPPORT THE APOSTLE OF CHRIST! That is our commission. Today, we are “holding fast”, waiting for God’s next TRUE apostle. WE are still backing and supporting God’s apostle Herbert W. Armstrong! So after the death of Mr. Armstrong, God allowed “Men” to take over the “legal corporation”. The prized properties of the Worldwide Church of God was sold off and used to fund “these churches” who were “planted” by the new leadership. But even though “men” took over the “Legal corporation”, they did not take over the true Church! The candlestick still exists!! THANK GOD!!! Jeremiah 24 pictures two baskets of figs. One basket is filled with good figs, the other is filled with evil figs. God preserves the basket of good figs, and he sends them into Babylon “for their good”. Much like how Zerubbabel and his band of Jews were sent into Babylon as captives, and were later CALLED OUT OF BABYLON. They were sent there “for their good”. Today, God’s people have been sent into these COG Groups “for their good”, but the time is coming for God’s people to COME OUT OF HER. Those who refuse to obey God, will stay in these groups, caught up like chaff in a sifting chamber, bundled to be burned by fire. Those who repent, even during the Great Tribulation, will have gained gold tried in the fire, and will escape the lake of fire. Much like a “brand plucked from the fire”, as Joshua pictures as being in Zechariah. Those who suffer the Great Tribulation are joined with a Zedekiah figure. King Zedekiah rebelled against Babylon, who set him up, and he rebelled against God. These false churches, are joined with the “government” just as a“corporation”is joined to the State, then to the Federal Government through corporate law. Zedekiah suffered the wrath of Babylon, when Babylon struck ancient Judah! Just like the Laodiceans will suffer the wrath of Satan through the United States of Europe in the coming world war! Today, the membership of the Worldwide Church of God are meeting together in their homes. Since there is no apostle today, we do not have a need for a “legal corporation” to be formed to handle large sums of money. The Matthew 24:14 Great Commission has already been FULFILLED! The governments of men require a “Corporation” to be formed in order to handle large sums of money, property etc. That is the only reason why the Church had incorporated under Mr. Armstrong. Today, those incorporating are false churches, and false works, trying to deceive God’s people into turning away from their Philadelphia commission! Instead of holding fast and staying loyal to Christ and His apostle, they are joining another church, in support of MEN not led by Christ! Mr. Armstrong was used by Christ to lead the Church OUT OF BABYLON. These churches insist that you must join them IN BABYLON, in order to continue with Christ. This is the deception. The Worldwide Church of God still exists. It lives with the membership still scattered worldwide. It is unincorporated, and is a SPIRITUAL ORGANISM. Today, false churches are trying to preach a gospel, trying to take on the job of the apostle and of God’s Church. They want God’s people to join them, and support them with God’s tithes. Some, in a laodicean condition are doing just that! They are producing works and fruits before the tribulation, and Christ rejects it all! AND THEY NEED TO REPENT OF IT! They need to STOP, turn around, and OBEY CHRIST WHOLLY! Our brethren need your prayers! Christ, through His apostle, and His Church are WARNING our laodicean brethren, and admonishing them to REPENT, in order to escape the coming Great Tribulation. And the reason why Christ is knocking on the doors of individuals who have the laodicean condition, is to have them realize that HE, CHRIST, IS NOT WITH THEM, and they are dying spiritually not being fed by Him! Jesus Christ in Zechariah 4 feeds the Philadelphia Church, The Worldwide Church of God, through His TWO ANOINTED ONES, or TWO APOSTLES. Mr. Armstrong and the soon to arise Main Witness. WE NEED TO GET BACK ON TRACK, AND FULFILL OUR JOB AS THE CHURCH! And we need to REALIZE that even though we enjoy or like the fellowship or the good times in these COG Groups, or if we enjoy our responsibilities in these groups, we must REPENT and COME OUT OF THEM, touching no unclean thing, in order to serve God and be the PILLARS we were called to be, MEMBERS OF THE TRUE AND ONLY CHURCH- THE WORLDWIDE CHURCH OF GOD!]]>

United States of Europe vs the United States and United Kingdom

HERBERT W. ARMSTRONG President and Pastor

August 14, 1978

 

Dear Brethren and Co-Workers in Christ,

We — and the whole world — are at a crucial turning point in the history of mankind. And in the life and work of God’s Church!

The death of Pope Paul VI may trigger a drastic, crucial and pivotal CHANGE in world affairs — and also in GOD’S WORK to which He has called you and me to be co-workers with Christ!

This is SO IMPORTANT to our very LIVES — as well as our labors with Christ in God’s Work. I want now to clarify even more what I wrote you a few days ago.

Let me start once again from the beginning. In creating man, God plunged into the most stupendous feat of creation possible even for the GREAT MAJESTIC GOD! My forthcoming book, “The Incredible HUMAN POTENTIAL” (hopefully ready for the Feast of Tabernacles) explains why it was imperative that God form man out of matter, instead of Spirit. Even though God Himself is a Spirit, composed of Spirit, and in this spiritual reproductive process He is going to change man into alternate Spirit composition.

But the first man and woman, Adam and Eve, after being completely informed by their maker of His PURPOSE, and of His KINGDOM, made their fateful DECISION. They would continue Satan’s WAY! They rejected the Kingdom of God! They rejected God as Ruler, Revealer of basic knowledge, Saviour, and Giver of eternal life.

God said, in effect: “You have made the decision for yourself and for your human race which shall come from you. You made it after hearing ALL THE FACTS. Therefore I SENTENCE you and the human race, for six thousand years, to being CUT OFF entirely from me, except such comparative few as I shall call to special duty that my purpose shall be fulfilled. After that six thousand years of your own HUMAN RULE, HUMAN PRODUCTION OF KNOWLEDGE, and HUMAN RELIGION, I will intervene, and take over by my supernatural power the GOVERNMENT, the EDUCATION, and the RELIGION of the entire human race.”

That six thousand years may be termed the DAY OF MAN. Although he has not realized it, man has been swayed, deceived, and actually ruled invisibly by Satan. Man has lived Satan’s way of “GET” instead of God’s way of “GIVE” — of outgoing LOVE. And now THE DAY OF THE LORD is almost upon us!

Let me now show you into what the death of Paul VI may plunge us.

For six thousand years the world in general has indeed been CUT OFF from God. Some knowledge of God did continue for many generations by word-of-mouth. But it became distorted.

After some 1900 years, God called Noah to the special project of building the great ark to preserve humanity alive through the flood God sent upon all the earth.

Several generations later God called Abraham. Four hundred thirty years after Abraham, God called MOSES to lead Abraham’s descendants out of Egyptian bondage. At Mount Sinai God proposed them a COVENANT agreement by which they would become GOD’S NATION.

Remember, through the symbolic tree of LIFE in the Garden of Eden, the Holy Spirit of God had been made accessible to Adam, provided he rejected Satan’s way, and chose the KINGDOM OF GOD.

In Adam and Eve from creation — and in all their progeny from birth — have existed a spirit which empowers the human BRAIN with an intellect non-existent in animals. This provides humans with MINDS. But God made the human mind to need another Spirit — the Holy Spirit of God. But on Adam’s decision, he and mankind, except such as God did specially call and convert, were CUT OFF from the Holy Spirit.

And that left the human mind a carnal mind — “deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked” (Jeremiah 17:9), and also “enmity” (hostile) against God, and not subject to the Law of God, neither indeed can be (Romans 8:7).

Now fasten firmly in your mind, that God did not offer the children of Israel His Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit He gave only to Moses and the prophets. The Kingdom of Israel, therefore, was a carnal-minded people! God put them under His government. They were thus ruled, primarily, by the SPIRITUAL LAW OF GOD — the Ten Commandments. But, because until Christ should come, the Holy Spirit was not available, God gave them a special sacrificial law. This was a reminder of sin — but the blood of animals could not pay the penalty of sin. Also God gave them a ceremonial law of rituals — of physical substitutes for the Holy Spirit, as the sacrificial law was a substitute for the blood of Christ.

Then God gave them also, as a national government, statutes and judgment — their civil law. But the substitute sacrificial law and ceremonial ritual law could not make them righteous. The nation Israel proved that the carnal mind is hostile against God — not subject to His Law. Even though they were given God’s revealed knowledge.

Now, meanwhile, consider the rest of the world as a whole through those years.

In Asia the yellow race, descended from Japheth, has formed their own pagan religions. In due time such religions as Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism, Brahminism and Hinduism had sprung up. In the sense of man’s relation to God they were hardly religions, but rather, philosophies — human thought devoid of the foundation of basic knowledge from God.

But we in the so-called Christian orbit have not heard a great deal about them.

Then, in ancient Egypt, Babylon, Greece and Rome, other pagan religions developed, based to a considerable extent on a perverted and deteriorated mouth-to-mouth knowledge of the true God. Most of those flowed through the funnel of religions set up by Semiramis, mother-wife of Nimrod. Nimrod, (Genesis 10) was the world’s first despot, or government dictator, after the Flood.

We know only the most meager fragmentary facts about human governments, religions, and knowledge production prior to the Flood. But Nimrod organized a number of city-states among descendants of Ham (and perhaps some of Shem) in the Euphrates-Tigris area. Out of this came the Isis and Osiris gods in Egypt — patterned after Nimrod and Semiramis. In Babylon and Greece, carnal minds created such “gods” as Jupiter, Estarte(Easter), Diana, Hermes, and a long list in Grecian-Roman mythology.

Now remember, the BIBLE is essentially the Book of ISRAEL — both ancient carnal Israel and New Testament spiritual Israel (the Church of God). The Bible is therefore not directly concerned with oriental religions. But the Hamitic religions of Egypt and the Middle East did come in contact with Israel — and do very significantly today with the Church of God — and, therefore, we do find a considerable history of them in the Bible.

I want you to consider now, the governments and religions of this area. They did come into contact with ancient Israel. And they do today, in a significant manner very little realized, with GOD’S CHURCH!

The Bible reveals history and prophecy regarding the pagan church-and-state combination, from ancient Egypt, from which Israel was delivered from slavery, through Babylon, Persia, Greece and Rome.

The death of Pope Paul VI has definite and tremendous connection with this. So let me trace, in extreme brevity, the chain of events revealed in God’s Word, from ancient Egypt, on to this present year 1978 A.D.

In the days of the prophet Daniel, about 550-610 B.C., King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon — the Chaldean Empire — had conquered other nations and formed the first WORLD EMPIRE. Nimrod long before had started the organization of city-states. Now Nebuchadnezzar conquered and annexed Egypt, the Medes, Persians, and Greeks, into the CHALDEAN EMPIRE, usually called Babylon, after its capital city. The nation Israel had been divided into TWO nations many generations before. Israel had rejected King Rehoboam, son of King Solomon, and set up a new king, Jeroboam, over them. At that time the tribes of Judah and Benjamin split off from the nation Israel, becoming the Kingdom of Judah in order to retain the Davidic dynasty in King Rehoboam. Jeroboam rejected the priests — the tribe of Levi — and the Levites mostly joined with the nation Judah. They, and they only, became known as the Jews.

In 721-718 B.C., King Shalmaneser of the Kingdom of Assyria (prior to Nebuchadnezzar’s Chaldean Empire) had conquered the Kingdom of Israel (TEN TRIBES), and moved them as slaves into the land of Assyria, on the southern shores of the Caspian Sea. He had put Babylonians, of the Babylon Mystery religion, in the land of Samaria — north of Jerusalem, from where he had evicted the ten-tribe Kingdom of Israel. They were still there in the time of Christ — Gentiles, in northern Palestine, retaining the Babylonian Mystery religion.

More than 120 years after the captivity of the Kingdom of Israel, King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon besieged and conquered the Kingdom of Judah (the Jews) and evicted them from Judea as slaves, taken to the land of Babylon.

Among these Jewish captives were four outstanding, especially talented and brilliant Jewish lads, of which Daniel was one. Nebuchadnezzar set them in important posts in the Chaldean government.

God used all four in dealing with the Chaldean King Nebuchadnezzar — but especially Daniel as a prophet of God.

The Book of Daniel, chapter 2 records the incident of the super impressive dream in which Nebuchadnezzar dreamed of a tremendous metallic statue. Daniel was called to tell the king what he had dreamed, and the message God conveyed to Nebuchadnezzar through it. The head of this enormous statue of a man was of fine GOLD, the breast and arms of silver, the belly and thighs of brass, the legs of iron, and the feet and toes a mixture of iron and miry clay — utterly non-adhesive.

This God-given dream was a PROPHECY. God revealed His tremendous MEANING to Nebuchadnezzar. The head of gold represented Nebuchadnezzar and his first WORLD EMPIRE, the Chaldean or the Babylonian Empire. The dream contained a time-element. After Nebuchadnezzar’s empire was to arrive a second empire, even larger and stronger in military might, but of less spiritual and moral values — the breast and arms of silver — the Persian Empire. It was later to be followed by a still larger and stronger empire though of lesser moral and spiritual value; Greece. The legs of iron represented the strongest of all in physical strength, yet it divided — the two legs of iron representing the two divisions of the Roman Empire with the western capital at Rome, and the eastern capital at Constantinople (called Istanbul, Turkey today). The feet and ten toes represented OUR TIME — this latter half of the twentieth century — at the CLOSE of the six-thousand-year sentence God imposed on the DAY OF MAN. It represented the Kingdom of God finally replacing all these Gentile kingdoms (verse 44).

Iron is stronger than brass, silver or gold, but less valuable. But miry clay, mixed with the iron toes, is both the least in value and strength. And iron and clay will not cleave together. They represent the resurrected Holy Roman Empire, soon to appear.

Now let us tie this prophecy to the actual historic events as they have occurred! After the Chaldean Empire, there arose the empire of the Medes and the Persians — the Persian Empire. It was conquered in 330 B.C. by Alexander the Great of Macedonia — with Grecian armed forces. But it was short-lived. Alexander soon died in a drunken debauch. His kingdom was then carried on in four divisions, each headed by one of Alexander’s four generals.

But one by one, these four divisions were swallowed up by what became the ROMAN EMPIRE, 31 B.C. It ruled the world, including the land of Israel and Judea in the time of Christ.

The Roman Empire was destroyed by Barbarians from the north in 476 A.D.

Then, beginning 333 A.D., the ancient Babylonian Mystery religion, a sector of it transplanted in Palestine north of Jerusalem after 718 B.C., had through its first century leader, Simon the Sorcerer (Acts 8), appropriated the name “Christianity,” portraying a false Jesus and turning Christ’s grace into license to disobey God’s Law.

By 554 this religion, called also the Roman Catholic religion, had become strong enough to dominate the world. In that year at the behest of the Roman Pope, the government of the eastern division of the defunct Roman Empire, Justinian, was moved to Rome and the Roman Empire was resurrected as the “HOLY ROMAN EMPIRE.” It was a union of European nations, in a CHURCH-AND-STATE EMPIRE — with the Roman Pope astride what is symbolized as the “beast” in Daniel 7, and in Revelation 13 and 17.

Let me at this point bring you up to date with the prophecies of Daniel 7, and the 13th and 17th chapters of Revelation.

In Daniel 7, the prophet himself had a dream in which God revealed the future. He saw FOUR wild animals — the first a lion, second a bear, third a leopard with four heads, and fourth a beast that embodied the dominant characteristics of its predecessors — the HEAD of the lion, the FEET of the bear, the BODY of the leopard, with four heads.

But in Daniel’s dream an additional factor was revealed which did not appear in Nebuchadnezzar’s dream-image. The fourth “beast,” representing the Roman Empire, had ten horns sprouting out of its head. But “there came up among them” — among the horns — “another little horn, before whom there were three of the first horns plucked up by the roots” (verse 8).

The four “beasts” were four kingdoms that should arise beginning with the Chaldean Empire (verse 17), and “the fourth beast shall be the fourth kingdom upon earth” (the Roman Empire — 31 B.C.-476 A.D.). And the “ten horns out of this (fourth) kingdom are ten kings (or kingdoms) that shall arise” (verse 24) out of — or after the Roman Empire — after 476 A.D.

The “little horn,” before whom three of the first horns were plucked up by the roots — (the Heruli, the Vandals and the Ostrogoths which disappeared from existence), was the little horn in whom “were the eyes of a man, and a mouth speaking great things” (verse 8); then again, “even of that horn that had eyes and a mouth that spake very great things, whose look was more stout than his fellows” (verse 20) — that is, a smaller horn, who dominated over the other horns, and before whom the first three were disintegrated.

This “little horn” was of major importance. For “the same horn made war with the saints (true Christians), and prevailed against them, until the Ancient of days (CHRIST) came, … and judgment was given to the saints of the most high; and the time came that the saints possessed the kingdom” (verses 21 and 22).

After the first three kingdoms following 476 A.D. had disappeared, SEVEN “horns” were left — seven kingdoms or rulerships to arise out of the original Roman Empire.

These seven formed the “Holy Roman Empire.” The first was Justinian, starting 554 A.D. The second was the Frankish kingdom of Charlemagne, 800 A.D. The third was the German kingdom of Otto the Great, the fourth was the Austrian Hapsburg kingdom of Charles the Fifth, and the fifth that of Napoleon, ending 1814 A.D. That ended, for the time being, the “Holy Roman Empire.” But there were recesses and lapses between Justinian’s reign and the revival in 800 A.D. under Charlemagne. These lapses or recesses are by inference “valleys” between mountain peaks, as we shall see in Revelation 17.

In 1935 Mussolini, on taking over Ethiopia, and including Italian Somaliland and Eritrea, concluded a concordat with the Vatican, called the restoration of the “Holy Roman Empire.” However, this was little noted at the time — I do not even remember it to have been front page news — and it was an insignificant and short-lived restoration of this “empire” — when the sixth of these remaining seven horns could aptly be termed, as in Revelation 17 “the beast that was, and is not, and yet is.”

Notice one more passage in Daniel 7 before leaving this chapter: “I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the son of man came with the clouds of heaven [Christ], and came to the Ancient of days and they brought him near before him. And there was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations and language should serve him; his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed” (verses 13, 14).

Then finally Daniel’s prophecy ends with “and the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdom [of God] under the whole heaven, shall be given to the people of the saints of the most High, whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions will serve and obey him” (verse 27).

Now on to Revelation 13.

John in vision here sees ONE “beast” rise up out of the sea — but it combined all the main carnal strengths and characteristics of Daniel’s four “beasts.” What the apostle John saw was a single wild animal with seven heads and ten horns. Daniel saw four “beasts” but the third, the Greco-Macedonian Empire, had four heads — the four divisions into which Alexander’s empire split up.

The wild animal John saw was like a leopard — but with the feet of a bear (the strongest part of the bear), a mouth like a lion and therefore the body of a quick cat-like leopard — in other words, the carnal and physical strength and characteristics of Babylon, Persia, Greece and Rome were all combined in this one animal — which therefore represented the ROMAN EMPIRE, with its continuation through the “Holy Roman Empire,” and even until the coming of Christ to RULE!

John continues describing this wild animal, saying that the “dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority” (Rev. 13:2). In Rev. 12:9 the dragon is explained to be a symbol representing Satan the Devil. So, this wild animal symbolizes the Roman Empire, as organized by MAN under the sway of Satan.

Verse 3: one of his seven heads — definitely the last one, or the Roman Empire of 31 B.C. – 476 A.D. — was wounded to death (476 A.D.), but the deadly wound was healed — by the succeeding “Holy Roman Empire,” beginning 554 A.D.

The people of the Western world worshipped the dragon — Satan, the god of this world — which the world is deceived into worshipping. They also worshipped the “beast” — the “Holy Roman Empire.” HOW? By saying, “Who is like unto the beast (the Holy Roman Empire), who is able to make war with him?” THAT IS WORSHIP!

“And there was given unto him” (verse 5) “a mouth speaking great things … and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months” — prophetic months — literally 1260 years — and it actually continued 554 to 1814 — precisely 1260 years. This “mouth speaking great things” is the same as the little horn of Daniel 7 with “a mouth speaking great things” — in other words, the Vatican.

Verse 7: “And it was given unto him [by Satan] to make war with the saints, and to overcome them.” It was Simon the Sorcerer (Acts 8) who, in 33 A.D., two years after Christ had founded the Church of God, turned the Babylonian Mystery religion into a so-called “Christianity,” and wielded enough power to SUPPRESS the preaching of Christ’s gospel message (Gal. 1:6, 7). If you have ever read “Fox’s Book of Martyrs” you will understand how this religious power, sitting astride the government — during this 1260 years tortured and put to death thousands of saints.

The church merely pronounced them “anathema from Christ” and/or state military police did the torturing and killing. This is referred to in Rev. 6 under the fifth seal — symbolizing the now-imminent “Great Tribulation” when another martyrdom of saints is coming in our time, during the Great Tribulation!

Now in verse 11, Rev. 13, John in his vision sees another “beast” coming up out of the earth, with two horns like a lamb, “and he spake as a dragon.” The two horns represent two government heads. “Like a lamb” — appearing as the Church of Christ, the Lamb of God. One of these horns represented the Papacy as RELIGIOUS head, the other is head of Vatican City, one of the world’s civil governments.

This second “beast” — the Papacy — (verse 12) exercised all the power of the first beast before him, — that is of the civil “Holy Roman Empire” — the United Europe! This same situation is pictured in Rev. 17 as a woman (church) riding astride a “beast” — the Roman government.

They claimed the “Holy Roman Empire” was the Kingdom of God. Christ had come, not in His own Person, but in that of the Pope’s, and was ruling. This explains why they called the CHURCH the Kingdom of God! The Popes have taken the title “Vicar of Christ,” which does not mean representative of Christ, but “in place of Christ.” In other words, Christ has been banished, and the Roman leader has taken His place.

Then, this religious leader — yet to come — is to perform “great wonders,” or apparent miracles — even as Simon the Magician of Acts 8 did among those of the Babylonian Mystery religion of his day in the land of Samaria, north of Jerusalem. But it was all deception — not real miracles, but magic.

Verse 14 — this religious leader brought into being an “image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live.” That is, a replica, likeness, imitation of the Imperial Roman Empire GOVERNMENT. Vatican City — a civil GOVERNMENT — is patterned after the system of government of the Roman Empire. “And (verse 15) he had power to … cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed.” Notice, the religious power did not do the actual killing — he caused them to be killed. The church pronounced dissenters “heretics” which was tantamount to a death-sentence. They were tortured, and unless they recanted and accepted the Catholic teaching, they were martyred. THIS WILL HAPPEN AGAIN — AND SOON — (Rev. 6:11) during the Great Tribulation!

Now comes verse 16 (Rev. 13). This same religious power, through the military and police of the STATE government of the “Holy Roman Empire,” and its now very imminent resurrection — will cause all within the jurisdiction of the civil state to RECEIVE A MARK and (verse 17) no person was then, or will be in the coming Great Tribulation, able to buy or sell — engage in earning a living, or purchase food or necessities of life — unless they have that mark! Send for our free booklet, “The Mark of the Beast.”

The “beast” has a number we should be able to count — 666!

Now to Revelation 17!

The same Gentile CHURCH-AND-STATE system in its final and latter stages — now very imminent — is portrayed in Revelation 17. In this vision given the Apostle John regarding the DAY OF THE LORD (Rev. 1:10) an angel came to him. It was one of the seven angels with the vials of the seven last plagues — to be poured out at the precise time of Christ’s Second Coming.

The seventeenth chapter is another inset chapter — one of the few injected into the main story-flow of the prophetic book of Revelation. The story-flow, in chapter 16, had come to the very time for the pouring out of the seven last plagues.

The angel said, “Come hither; I will shew unto thee the judgment of the great whore that sitteth upon many waters.”

This, of course, is symbolically speaking of the great false church. The many “waters” are (verse 15): several nations speaking different languages. Historically, it could mean only European nations — the “Holy Roman Empire” of 554 – 1814 A.D.

This great church (verse 2) has committed fornication (spiritually) with the kings of Europe. Fornication is illicit intercourse with an unmarried person. Israel had been married to Christ (the Lord of the Old Testament). So this is not Israel. It is identified as Gentile nations. The true Church of God is the affianced bride of Christ. Christ’s death severed the Old Covenant marriage. But New Testament spiritual Israel (the Church) is engaged to marry the RESURRECTED CHRIST, upon the resurrection of the Church.

So, (verse 3) the angel in vision carried John into the wilderness, where he saw this same great whore as a woman sitting astride a scarlet-colored “BEAST” (symbolic of civil government). This “beast” had seven heads and ten horns.

This is a continuation of the “beast” prophecies of Daniel 7 and Revelation 13. But the “beast” revealed to John here is the very latter part of the whole system, dating from Nebuchadnezzar’s Chaldean empire. But the “seven heads” of this seventeenth chapter “beast” are the “Holy Roman Empire,” dating from 554 A.D. — in other words the last seven of the ten horns of the thirteenth chapter “beast.”

And the ten horns on this “beast” are the same as the “ten TOES” of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream image (Daniel 2).

This woman (church) was arrayed in purple, the color of royalty and scarlet, the color of a whore. Also she was decked with gold and precious stones and pearls.

Now we come to HER NAME (verse 5): “MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.” Her harlot daughters came out of her in protest. This name identifies the church as that of the BABYLONIAN MYSTERY religion, now grown GREAT ruling civil nations.

In other words the Babylonian Mystery religion of the ancient Chaldean Empire, now grown great in size and power. Indeed she is the largest religion on earth in number of adherents today.

Notice, this “woman” was drunken with the blood of the saints — just as Daniel’s” little horn” persecuted the saints of Christ — and prevailed against them until the coming of Christ to rule the world (Dan. 7:21,22). This, incidentally, is not referring to the Roman Empire persecutions, where professing Christians were thrown to hungry lions as a “sport” in the Roman Coliseum. This is speaking of a medieval persecution.

Then (verse 8) the angel in this vision explains to the apostle the time element. Remember, this whole seventeenth chapter prophecy is thrown in — as an inset into the sequence of prophesied events of the book of Revelation, just at the point where world events had come to the very time of Christ’s return in POWER. So, we know the time of events shown the apostle in the seventeenth chapter is shortly before Christ’s Second Coming.

Verse 8 explains that John is seeing this “beast” at a time in world events when the “Holy Roman Empire” was, and is not, and shall ascend (be restored) out of the bottomless pit — that is a state of virtual non-existence.

Notice the latter part of verse 8. The whole world will be shocked in wonder, when this final revival of the “Holy Roman Empire” occurs. It is “the beast that was,” and (at the time-setting of this vision) “is not, and yet is.” That would place the time when the vision John saw this church riding over the governments of Europe, at approximately 1935 and up to our very present moment.

It was in 1935 when Mussolini declared he had restored the “Holy Roman Empire” yet, as stated, I do not remember that it was regarded as sufficiently newsworthy to make the front pages of newspapers. I did read the dispatches — but it was not given big headlines. Probably only a few even noticed it. It was such an insignificant revival of the Holy Roman Empire that the world in general considered the empire “WAS NOT,” and yet it was. This was the sixth “head” of the “beast”.

Verse 9: the seven heads of this medieval-modern empire are symbolized as seven mountains on which the “woman” sat. I have already explained there were “valleys” in between the times when this European empire rose to its greatest heights.

Verse 10: Revised Standard Version,” They are also seven kings” or kingdoms — eras — five of whom have (at the time of the vision) “fallen … one is” (1935), “and the other is not yet come.”

Verse 11: And this beast “is the eighth and is of the seven.” That is, it is of, following after, as part of, the seven heads of the thirteenth chapter “beast” — and it is the eighth. The seven were Babylon, Persia, Greece with four heads, and the Roman Empire of 31 B.C.- 476 A.D. This is a continuation of the same Gentile system. It is the final stage of the entire system dating from 604 B.C. to Christ’s Second Coming, when it shall go into perdition! (Utter destruction!)

Verse 12: We have been talking about the seven “heads” of this “beast” — Justinian, Charlemagne, Otto, Charles, Napoleon, Mussolini, were the SIX! The “ten horns” are part of the seventh “head” perhaps now in the election of a new Pope, coming. These ten horns are not described as successive kingdoms, one after the other — but as ten literal contemporaneous kings. But, as of the time of division — 1935 to now — they have not yet received their kingdoms. But they are to receive power as kings, for just a very short period — perhaps three and one-half or more years.

They are to be ten heads-of-state over ten European nations, temporarily united as a “United States of Europe.” They are symbolized in Daniel 2 as the ten toes, of iron and miry clay — which will not mix, and therefore shall be short-lived!

Definitely, however, they shall last for at least two and one- half years of the three and one-half years of the “Great Tribulation” — which they will instigate. And also the very brief period of “THE DAY OF THE LORD” which is the central theme of the whole book of Revelation. This latter could be up to one year at the end of the “Great Tribulation.”

But they will give all their military and monetary power to the central ruler over the TEN — the coming European leader — one I may already know.

These ten, with their leader, will fight against Christ at His coming — but He will END their rule. This places the whole seventeenth chapter “beast” as shortly before Christ’s coming.

Now to pick up the thread of our story from the beginning — from the creation of Adam. The six-thousand-year sentence God placed on the world from Adam is ready very soon to expire.

The ten-tribed kingdom of Israel, taken to Assyria as slaves 721-718 B.C. had, with the ancient Assyrians, migrated into Europe within a hundred years — by or before Judah’s captivity by Babylon 604-585 B.C. The Assyrians are the Germans of today. Ephraim- Manasseh settled in the British Isles. The tribe of Reuben settled in France. Dan may have settled in Ireland — or Denmark, or both. Others of the ten tribes settled in Western Europe — Holland, Norway, Sweden, Belgium.

Meanwhile, a contingent of Judah (Jews) had gone back to Jerusalem and Judea to build the second temple, 70 years after Nebuchadnezzar destroyed Solomon’s temple. Other parts of Judah had migrated to such countries as Russia, Poland, and many Balkan countries. Many Jews from those countries have been returning to modern Israel since 1948.

But Jews were living in Judea when Jesus was born. Gentiles of the Babylonian Mystery religion had been in the area of Samaria north of Jerusalem.

Jesus sent His twelve original apostles to “the lost sheep of the House of Israel” — actually then unknown to the world — having lost their identity, living in Western Europe (not including Italy, Spain and Portugal). That is why we find very little in the book of Acts or New Testament history about Peter, after some few years following Christ’s resurrection and the founding of the Church of God. That explains why we read more about Paul — who was the chief apostle to the Gentiles.

But two years after the founding of the Church of God, 31 A.D., a tremendous persecution set in. By about 59 A.D. the churches in Galatia had turned to another gospel — Christ’s gospel message had been suppressed. The Church had gone virtually underground — but it survived through all generations. Thousands were martyred during the “Dark Ages” of the medieval “Holy Roman Empire.”

But, today, we find a trace of some of the original Christian faith of Jesus in Britain, Europe, South America, besides the United States.

In 1933 God raised up a new era of His true Church. It is the “Philadelphia” era of Rev. 3:7-13, when Christ has “opened the door” into foreign Gentile nations — which doors had been closed to Christ’s message — so that the message of the GOSPEL OF THE KINGDOM OF GOD might, AT LAST, (after nineteen centuries when it was suppressed) go into those nations. And all this, just before the GREAT TRIBULATION and the end of this six-thousand-year day of man.

Now, finally, I come to what it is of LIFE-AND-DEATH importance for you to understand!

Our labors in GOD’S WORK will be ended soon after the resurrection of the impending United States of Europe!

UNDERSTAND these end-time PROPHECIES! According to Daniel 11:40-45, this revived “Holy Roman Empire”, “shall enter into the glorious land, and many countries shall be overthrown.”

Then, verse 44, news out of the north-east (Russia and China) shall worry him — the Communists will be stirring to invade and destroy Roman Catholic EUROPE! Therefore, this power (U.S. of Europe) “shall go forth with great fury to destroy, and utterly to make away many. And he shall plant the tabernacles of his palace…in the glorious [land]” (Palestine — Judea — Israel).

Continue Dan. 12:1: “And at that time shall Michael stand up” (Rev. 12:7), “the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation …” (compare Matt. 24:21, 22 — the Great Tribulation), then shall soon follow the coming of Christ, the resurrection of the dead in Christ, and the KINGDOM OF GOD!

Now notice what Jeremiah adds to happen at this precise juncture: (Jer. 30).

“Alas! for that day is great, so that none is like it: it is even the time of Jacob’s trouble” (verse 7). This is the same GREAT TRIBULATION — as Matt. 24:21, 22 has it: “For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved [alive]: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened.”

Jeremiah 30 is more specific. While it is to be a time of WORLD TROUBLE such as never before occurred, yet it is PRIMARILY “the time of JACOB’S TROUBLE.”

Now who is “Jacob” in these last days? THANK GOD! He revealed to me 51 years ago that the so-called “lost ten tribes” of Israel (of Jacob) had migrated to Western Europe, Britain, and finally the United States. In Ambassador College from its very opening day, I had to fight diligently and continually to keep Christ in and Satan’s world out! The so-called “intellectuals of higher education” constantly sniped away at BASIC TRUTH which God had revealed to me — on which God’s Church for our time is based. They found three or four little non-important errors in the booklet “The United States and British Commonwealth in Prophecy” originally written some 51 years ago. As their tiny non-important errors were brought to my attention, they were eliminated! But finally, my son, assuming an authority never delegated to him had this most important booklet cut down to almost nothing, then put out of circulation entirely! That booklet, or book, is again being printed — “error-free” — and will be vigorously circulated. That book had a great deal to do with the very building of the Worldwide Church of God!

When prophecy tells us this is to be the time of “Jacob’s trouble,” that means, primarily, the United States and the British people!

Now that we are coming down to the very time, it is A LIFE-AND- DEATH matter to God’s Church that we UNDERSTAND!

Now the prophecy says, news from Communist countries will cause this “beast” power to “go forth with great fury to destroy” (Dan. 11:44). He will thereby instigate “THE GREAT TRIBULATION.” But whom will he seek to destroy? Jacob! And the dying Jacob in Egypt, with his hands crossed on Ephraim and Manasseh (Joseph’s sons) said, “let my name (JACOB) be named on them” (Gen. 48:16). Today they are the U.S. and the British!

Undoubtedly GERMANY will head the new resurrected “Holy Roman Empire.” Who conquered the German armed fist twice — in the two great world wars? It was Britain with the United States pouring in the real knockout power! Who will they go forth to DESTROY? Britain and the United States!

Read the latter portions of the “U.S. in Prophecy” booklet prophecies, showing that our cities shall be destroyed (Ezek. 6:6). A third of our populations shall die from disease epidemics caused by famine, and another third shall be killed by military action and the remaining third scattered — as slaves to Europe (and probably some to South America) (Ezek. 5:12).

Our work will be ended soon after the resurrection of the “Holy Roman Empire” — the impending “United States of Europe.” The Laodicean era of God’s Church — the seventh and final era — will exist during the Great Tribulation.

But our “Philadelphia” era brethren are promised divine PROTECTION — to be taken to a place of safety (Rev. 3:10 and 12:13-16) which PLEASE READ!

Now, you of God’s Church can see WHY the election of a new Pope — in a few days (this is written August 11, 13 and 14 — before the conclave of Cardinals to elect a new Pope) is vitally important to us. If this election (within two weeks from this writing) results in the prophesied “United States of Europe,” which Pope Paul VI had been outlining within the Vatican — but not publicly — then the time left to us to finish the work of the GREAT COMMISSION is short indeed!

Brethren, IF we are to be taken to a place of protection from the GREAT TRIBULATION, we shall have to have real faith in Christ and His promises!

A spiritual REVIVAL within the Church is virtually a LIFE-AND- DEATH matter of URGENCY NOW! I ask you, pray as never before!

With deepest love in Jesus’ name,

Herbert W. Armstrong

    Comment: Today, Pope Francis, a Jesuit from Argentina is the first Jesuit Pope. After the World War 2, in the 1950’s The Plain Truth Magazine and Herbert W. Armstrong reported on Hitler’s escape to Argentina, and how that revival of the Holy Roman Empire went UNDERGROUND. Since that time this “government” has been working in the shadows. And if you know anything about the Jesuit society, and their history, even their history within the United States, you realize how this “shadow government” works. Hitler used the Jesuit Society to form his SS Gestapo believe it or not. And since World War 2, this “shadow government” has been at WORK, preparing for WORLD WAR 3! If you read Revelation 12 and other places, you find that this “United States of Europe” is that shadow government working underground today, and when it rises up it’s first mission is to DESTROY the Worldwide Church of God! But this Church is protected by God, and goes into a place of protection. And then, Satan the Devil, that great serpent, turns and wages WAR on the remnant of this Church, our laodicean brethren, and WORLD WAR 3 COMMENCES! Today, the United States of Europe is forming in Europe. WE ARE SEEING BIBLE PROPHECY UNFOLD BEFORE OUR EYES! And this Great New World Superpower will cut our Work, of the Worldwide Church of God, OFF, and will seek to DESTROY US. That is what the Bible tells us. After the death of Herbert W. Armstrong, many have created corporations, forming their own “churches”, claiming to be the successor of Herbert W. Armstrong and the Worldwide Church of God. This claim is a false one. They have NEW churches, NEW corporations, NEW IDENTITIES. If you work for Macy’s you don’t call yourself an employee of Kohls. And you don’t go around telling your customers that even though they stand in a Macy’s department store, that they are supporting Kohls. That would be fraudulent. And would be WRONG! These churches are telling people that the Worldwide Church of God went defunct, and that they have succeeded the Church! But the Worldwide Church of God still exists, as it was never the legal corporation, and our membership is still backing and supporting Herbert W. Armstrong and the message he preached, the true gospel of Jesus Christ! The Church’s corporation was taken, and re-branded as a different corporation with different values and teachings. God allowed that to happen. But the Worldwide Church of God continues to exist.  The membership is the Worldwide Church of God! In 1979, the State of California tried to SEIZE and take over the Worldwide Church of God, by taking over the the Church’s property and college campus located in Pasadena. But the Church doesn’t just exist in California, or just in the United States, it exists WORLDWIDE and has a worldwide membership. So while they seized the California corporation, the Church continued on. And eventually they won that MONUMENTAL AND HISTORICAL COURT CASE FOR RELIGIOUS FREEDOM IN AMERICA! And so, even though after 1986, the legal corporation was taken away, the Church continues to exist. Today, the Church faces an identity theft. It’s name has been run through the mud, and has been dirtied by other men who do not represent this Church. And what Mr. Armstrong is talking about above, in his co-worker and brethren letter, is how the Work of the Church will be STOPPED by this United States of Europe, this prophesied “Beast Power” of Revelation. Since World War 2, this “POWER” has been working feverishly UNDERGROUND. Since that time, Pope Francis rises from Argentina, the same country this “Beast power” disappeared in. This “beast system”, will rise up to become the “United States of Europe”. They will become OVERT, stepping from their COVERT actions being worked out within the shadows. God’s Church faces PERSECUTION today from this “shadow government”, and according to the Word of God, when this “beast system” steps from the shadows, it will become the United States of Europe, a union of Ten-nations of Europe. And the Roman Catholic Church will ride this new World Superpower, being the woman that rides the beast power! PRAY! PRAY! PRAY!]]>

Are We REALLY Listening Brethren?

Worldwide News, 19th Feb 1979 page 1

And Now Christ Sets Church Back On Track Doctrinally

By Herbert W Armstrong

Until about 1969 we in God’s Church did all “speak the same things”. By 1978 many of the ministers were speaking different things! God had withdrawn from us His blessing and power that for 35 YEARS caused the Work of His Church to grow at the approximate rate of 30 percent every years of the preceding year!

WHAT CAUSED GOD TO WITHDRAW HIS BLESSING AND POWER?

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"God brought me back to life…FOR A PURPOSE."

Quote from Co-Worker & Brethren Letter, April 16, 1979 Author: Herbert W. Armstrong   The Worldwide Church of God shall have made herself READY! Today, Jesus Christ is leading His Church through His anointed apostle Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong. God hasn’t changed His mind. He chose His apostle FOR A PURPOSE. We, the membership of the Church, were called by God FOR A PURPOSE as well! The Worldwide Church of God BACKS and SUPPORTS Mr. Armstrong, Christ’s anointed apostle! In Zechariah 4, is pictured ONE CANDLESTICK, or ONE CHURCH,  with 2 apostles, 2 anointed ones feeding the Church the “golden oil” picturing the Holy Spirit of God. If we compare Zechariah 4 with Revelation 11, we find that the MAIN WITNESS is one of these 2 anointed ones. Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong is the first anointed one. The Main Witness is the second anointed one. They are over the Philadelphia Era, or CANDLESTICK. These 2 anointed ones of God, are feeding the same WORLDWIDE CHURCH OF GOD, the very same candlestick! Today, God’s Church is making herself ready, studying God’s Word, and the apostle’s teaching, making sure he/she is walking according to God’s Word. Mr. Armstrong was raised for a PURPOSE! Are you going to allow Christ to use the apostle to correct you, to teach you, to build you up in Jesus Christ, into the glorious TEMPLE OF THE LIVING GOD? The second anointed one of Zechariah 4, the main witness of Revelation 11, will be an apostle. God gives power unto His next apostle to preach, when their commission begins in Jerusalem at the beginning of the Great Tribulation. Look to the apostle Paul’s example in God’s Word. When God called him into the body of Christ, Christ Himself trained him. He then worked in the Church under Barnabas, but was not yet standing in the office of apostle. When God’s time for him came, and it did, God raised up His chosen apostle to do the job! That time for the Main Witness is in the soon future! But for now, we are under the first anointed one of Zechariah 4, called to BACK AND SUPPORT GOD’S ANOINTED APOSTLE- Herbert W. Armstrong! And we must be found SO DOING! That is the PURPOSE of the Worldwide Church of God! “God brought me back to life from complete heart failure and death, in August 1977 FOR A PURPOSE. That PURPOSE is to FINISH proclaiming His Message around the world — to be used in setting His Church back on His track — and in leading you brethren of His Church into a condition where you are finally PREPARED, and MADE READY, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but HOLY — the Bride of Christ who shall have made herself READY! ” Quote from Co-Worker & Brethren Letter, April 16, 1979 Author: Herbert W. Armstrong]]>