"Don't Believe Me, Believe the Bible" – A phrase misused for an excuse to disobey God

PERSONAL

by Herbert W. Armstrong

page 1 Good News April 1979

  God commands that we in His Church “all speak the same thing.” But WHY? HOW? Christ’s apostle is accused of using “total thought control” over the Church. What is the TRUTH?   THERE’S NO QUESTION about it — God commands emphatically that we in His Church do “all speak the same thing” (I Cor. 1:10). For many years I have striven to bring all God’s children into a unity of belief (Ps. 133:1). Did you ever stop to think how many things we believe and proclaim to the world that are contrary to the doctrines and teachings of all other churches calling themselves “Christian”? I am writing a book, titled A VOICE CRIES OUT Amid RELIGIOUS CONFUSION. This book will say that of all the religions and all the more than 250 denominations and sects in “Christianity,” NOT ONE, except the Worldwide Church of God, knows WHO and WHAT God is! NOT ONE knows what, and why, MAN IS! NOT ONE knows the TRUTH about the nation Israel — WHY God chose them, yet gave none but their prophets His Holy Spirit — where they are today. NOT ONE knows what is the TRUE GOSPEL Christ proclaimed! NOT ONE knows what happens in the hereafter — the transcendent human potential. NOT ONE knows the real function of the Church and purpose of its being.

None but God’s true Church

NONE but God’s one and only TRUE CHURCH has the full knowledge God has revealed to His own Church. NOT ONE knows what salvation really is! Doesn’t it, then, become abundantly apparent that we must all know precisely what God has prepared for those who love Him — and that we speak these amazing TRUTHS as they are — all speaking the same thing? Now WHY does God command that we all speak the same thing — believe the same doctrines and truths? And HOW has Christ provided that we all come to know, believe and speak “the same thing”? By psychological mind control? NEVER! But first, WHY is it important that we all believe and speak the same DOCTRINES? Continue in I Corinthians 1:10: “that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.”

Will God’s Kingdom be divided?

UNDERSTAND this! If we are led by the Spirit of God we shall enter into His Kingdom of God at the time of Christ’s coming and the resurrection. Will GOD’S Kingdom be divided? Again, we are, so to speak, in the process of being trained for entrance into the Kingdom of God, where WE SHALL JUDGE ANGELS (I Cor. 6:3). A kingdom or a house divided against itself cannot stand! Even two cannot walk together except they be agreed! (Amos 3:3). A few years ago, when I had high hopes that my son, Garner Ted, might qualify in God’s sight for very high office in God’s Kingdom, I said to him, “Ted, I often think of you and me as a father-and-son team, and how wonderful it would seem if we could be like the Father-and-Son divine Team that heads the entire universe! But to walk together as God and Christ do, we would have to remember that the Son agreed completely with the Father in all things. He said, “‘I have not spoken of myself; the Father which sent me, he gave me a commandment what I should say’ ” (John 12:49). But as soon as I mentioned that the Divine Son was in total agreement with His Father, Ted would immediately change the subject. How do we come to know WHO and WHAT God is, and the other truths mentioned above that are not known by any other church or religion? Jesus Christ revealed them to His apostle, who taught these precious truths to you! And how precious they are! A corollary to I Corinthians 1:10 is Romans 16:17-18: “Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offenses contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple.” “Avoid them” means just that. Walk away from them. Do not invite them into your home. “If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed” (II John 10). Completely AVOIDING those ex-communicated who hold and speak a different doctrine is IMPORTANT with God. To the Thessalonians God made this a command: “Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received from us [that is, from Christ’s true apostles] . . . And if any man obey not our word by this epistle, note that man, and have no company with him” (II Thess. 3:6, 14). This is SO IMPORTANT to GOD that He had the apostle John, in the 90s, A.D., write, as quoted above, “If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine” (as received through Christ’s apostles), “receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed” (II John 10). My own son, whom I love, does NOT speak this same thing CHRIST put into GOD’S CHURCH. WHY DOES GOD COMMAND US TO ACTUALLY SHUN A DISFELLOWSHIPPED MEMBER? WHY DOES GOD WANT US — COMMAND US! — to mark and avoid those who come with a different doctrine? Because they created DIVISION among God’s people! “And” (Rom. 16:18) “by good words and fair speeches” they DECEIVE those who listen — they claim to serve God — but they DO NOT AGREE with God. One of my son’s “fair speeches” intended to deceive and draw away members tries to turn the very command of God, that we must all speak the same thing, into an accusation that I am using MIND CONTROL over our members. So he sends out a “fair speech” in writing, attempting to associate God’s Church with the Jim Jones Guyana cult. He says: “For too many years” (when he was in God’s Church) “I tried with all my being to encourage our brethren to think for themselves.” In other words, to QUESTION and doubt the validity of the doctrines CHRIST had put in the Church. He continues, “The demoniac preacher Jim Jones used extreme forms of total dictatorial control over his followers.” Then he spoke of “total thought control” — inferring that now, all of a sudden, I am another “Jim Jones” and exercising “total thought control” over you members. He says that when I say, with I Corinthians 1:10, that we “all speak the same thing,” I am using mind control over you, and he sends out letters and booklets EMPHASIZING that HE DOES NOT AGREE WITH OR PREACH THE SAME THING as his father. Thus he not only breaks God’s Fifth Commandment by dishonoring his father, but he seeks to misrepresent and pull over a following for himself (Acts 20:30). But, LET’S FACE IT! God does command that we ,all “speak the same thing” (I Cor. 1:10). But now we need to ask HOW that can be done. HOW, without mind control, has God provided that we may all come to speak the same thing?

TRUE doctrines were revealed

After God inspired Paul to command that we must all speak the same doctrines, HOW does Paul say we all come to that sameness of doctrine and belief? First, he shows WHY all did not speak the same teachings. He said some looked to Peter, some to Cephas, some to Apollos, some to Paul. In other words, they were all looking to MEN — and not all to the same man. Coming to chapter 2, Paul says he did not come to them with clever and enticing words. Then he said the TRUE DOCTRINES were REVEALED, and that the natural carnal mind could not understand. Paul had the truth because, 1) he had really repented when God struck him down temporarily blind and spoke to him. Then later, 2) he explained he had been with and had seen Christ. His teaching came directly from Jesus Christ. So had Peter’s! But Paul shows, I Corinthians 2:7-14, that NO ONE can come into the truth with a natural carnal mind. It requires the receiving of the Holy Spirit of God. As God said through Paul another time, “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 2:5). No one will ever come to understand the TRUTH except by receiving the Holy Spirit. But EVEN SO, all these Corinthians were supposed to have received the Holy Spirit— YET THEY BELIEVED DIFFERENT THINGS, because they followed different men! God put His TRUE DOCTRINES into His Church through His apostles BY THEIR WRITINGS. Jesus is the Word of God in PERSON! The Bible is the Word of God IN PRINT! Today, Christ has put the TRUE DOCTRINES into God’s Church through the apostle whom HE chose – not elected by men!

How doctrines are revealed

In our case, the 20th-century “time of the end,” how did God put His doctrines, beliefs and teachings into the Church? Answer: By His chosen apostle, just as all doctrines, teachings and practices were put into the Church in A.D. 31 by Christ and the apostles — who, with the prophets, form the FOUNDATION of the Church. Jesus specially prepared me for this purpose, just as He specially prepared the apostles of the first century. He brought me to see that what I had been taught in a Protestant church was false — the opposite of the Bible. Jesus Christ is the Word of God IN PERSON. The Bible is the Word of God IN WRITING. The living Christ brought me to two severe challenges, which forced me to see I had been wrong. He swept my mind clean of all previous beliefs and doctrines and taught me His doctrines and beliefs. Still, as was Peter and Paul — and Moses, Elijah, David and Daniel — I am human and could make a mistake. BUT, if you have proved that this is, indeed, God’s true Church for this present time, then you MUST BELIEVE that if and when I make a mistake, the LIVING CHRIST will correct me! Indeed HE HAS DONE so! Now to the very CRUX of the question of HOW we must all come to believe and speak the SAME THING! Christ put His doctrines in God’s Church in A.D. 31 through the apostles HE had chosen and taught. In our time, now, the same living Christ called, prepared and chose me as His servant to put His doctrines into God’s Church today!

Christ’s responsibility to set Church right

If I make a mistake, it is CHRIST’S responsibility to set me straight! But DO YOU BELIEVE CHRIST IS STILL ALIVE AND WILL DO IT? Or, if you think our Church doctrines are wrong on some point, do you think it is YOUR responsibility to set the Church right? Back in the earlier years of the present decade, some wanted a doctrinal committee to question all we believed — and in truth it gravitated into an effort to TRY by inductive reasoning and research to prove Christ’s doctrines in the Church are in error! Since that time, Christ has led me to see our doctrine and teaching on two subjects were indeed in error. Yet NONE of the arguments of the “intellectual liberals” were valid. God opened my eyes to see the error from an entirely different approach and viewpoint than the “scholars” had presented. One of these was fixing the day of Pentecost. Every known translation of the Bible, in 1927 when I first studied and set the date, translated into English, said, count the 50 days FROM a specific Sunday. One day FROM Sunday is Monday, and 50 days FROM a Sunday is a Monday. For 40 years God’s true Church observed this Festival one day late. Finally I found, on evidence from Jewish Old Testament teachers and from two of the translators of the Revised Standard Version, that FROM was a mistranslation. It should have been translated ON or, count beginning on a Sunday. I had not made the original mistake — the translators had. But I IMMEDIATELY changed it upon PROOF. The other major doctrinal change made is one that needs a deal of up-DATING! It concerned “divorce and re-marriage.” All the arguments of the “scholarly” liberals on this subject were false. Again I think it fair to say the real error was due to translating. This caused me, and the many with whom I counsel on such questions, to pass over a verse in I Corinthians 7, without recognizing its real meaning. Now suppose a member thinks he or she has found an error in our doctrines. How must you proceed? IF you have found truth, we all want to know and embrace it! But how MUST you proceed? NEVER by trying to convince another member of your “finding,” lest you fall guilty of Romans 16:17-18. WHAT, then? Take it to your local minister or write to headquarters. What must a local pastor do? Send it to headquarters. If it is felt to be a valid truth, it will be brought to me personally, and the LIVING CHRIST will make it clear to my mind! We have covered the question of how does the living Christ put His doctrines into the Church. But the Church is made up of many members. How does each member come to understand each doctrine?

How Christ put His Church back on track

Now let us pull together all that has gone before. We have to admit that at this time a year ago, those in God’s Church were NOT all speaking the SAME THING. And we were DIVIDED! The living Christ, Head of the Church, began to move swiftly to correct this evil in our midst. The spearhead of the liberal movement was my own son, Garner Ted, because he was wielding executive vice presidential AUTHORITY — AND MORE — for his whole attitude and approach was that of making himself chief top authority. However, he was under the influence of a small group of “intellectuals” who used him.  Christ has been moving swiftly to set the Church doctrines back on track, through articles in The Worldwide News and The Good News.  The ministry and pastoral direction is fast being put back on God’s track. This of necessity means that I, personally, am going to suffer abuse and persecution and false rumors from a few ex-ministers. But I must be concerned with PLEASING God, not man. Now we have to ask, HOW did this division and doctrinal disagreement get its ugly head inside the Church, and HOW safeguard the Church from any further Trojan-horse invasions? I have said through the years, over the air and in print and before audiences, “Don’t believe me because I say it — look in your own Bible and believe what you find there!” But I DO NOT — or, at least, SHOULD NOT HAVE ever said that to our own brethren! But my son writes: “I tried with all my being to encourage our brethren to think for themselves.” In other words don’t believe our deep-rooted Church teachings — think out NEW, DIFFERENT beliefs for yourself! But GOD’S WAY is THIS! This is the way the original first-century apostles preached. They spoke the TRUTH with POWER! To the unconverted Thessalonians, the Bereans were complimented for checking up on Paul’s preaching (Acts 17:11). But none should be accepted IN THE CHURCH until that person either has come to KNOW and accept and believe Christ’s true doctrine, OR has repented so THOROUGHLY, CONQUERED BY GOD and with an attitude of a little child, so that the minister doing the baptising feels sure he or she will accept and believe fully Christ’s true doctrines in His Church. In other words, Christ commands that we all speak the same thing. THAT BECOMES A QUALIFICATION FOR MEMBERSHIP! Yet I must add one comment concerning the above paragraph. Paul shows in I Corinthians 2 that the carnal unconverted mind cannot comprehend and come to real understanding of spiritual knowledge. There is no PROMISE in the Bible that one will receive the Holy Spirit prior to baptism (though Cornelius and his house did). In Matthew 28:19-20, in the great commission, Jesus mentioned “teaching them to observe … [commandments],” after mentioning baptism. That is why I myself have baptized some prior to coming into full doctrinal teaching, but these were cases where I felt sure they were so completely surrendered to Christ that they would — as in fact they did — accept doctrinal teaching. I said at the ministers’ conference that I feel we have been too lax in baptising people before they were completely REPENTANT and FULLY BELIEVED Christ and what He says in the Bible. Once in the Church, WE MUST ALL SPEAK THE SAME THING! I have covered earlier in this “Personal” how a member should proceed who thinks he has found where the Church is in error on a doctrine, or where he thinks he has discovered “new light” the Church does not yet have. It must be cleared finally by Christ’s apostle.

A CORRECTION

by Herbert W. Armstrong page 4 Good News June/July 1979

In a recent issue of The Good News I mentioned that often I have said to the public, on the air or in The Plain Truth, “Don’t believe what I say because I say it, but look into your own Bible and believe what you see there.” But then I said in this article that I do not say that to our own members. I think some may have gotten the idea I said members should not read the Bible or even read over what I have said to better understand by seeing it all in context for themselves. Apparently some got the idea I said nonmembers must believe only what THEY SEE FOR THEMSELVES in the Bible, but that members must NOT read the Bible or believe it, but believe ONLY WHAT I say or write. Of course I did not mean that. What I did mean is that members should have checked up in the Bible and assured themselves what God’s Church teaches is true BEFORE being baptized and coming into the Church. What I meant was that members should not disbelieve everything we teach and read the Bible for the purpose of trying to prove that we teach falsely. I suppose the reason that came to mind is that we did have, a few years ago, a group of self-professed “intellectuals” who started a “doctrinal committee,” when their sole PURPOSE was to HARM God’s Church by trying to MISUSE the Bible and misinterpret it to try to convince others that the Church taught falsely — when in fact, this is the ONLY church on earth that DOES have the TRUTH!

Bible study encouraged

Let me make it crystal CLEAR! I encourage nonmembers to SEE the truth for themselves in their own Bibles. But, after one becomes a MEMBER, he is supposed to know we have the truth. He has checked up — he has seen it in his own Bible. Therefore I do NOT encourage members to QUESTION all over again what we preach. I most certainly have always encouraged all members to read and study the Bible continually — to increase their own knowledge and understanding — but NOT to deliberately try to DISAGREE with the Church and study for the PURPOSE of disagreeing and causing dissension and division in the Church. But, in continuous Bible study to ADD to one’s store of biblical knowledge, if one comes across a knowledge of something new to the Church — something not proclaimed or preached in the Church, he may go to his local pastor with it, or he may contact headquarters at Pasadena or he may bring it personally to me. If it is either contrary to Church doctrine or something in ADDITION to Church doctrine, he MAY NOT spread it to other lay members. IF his new understanding is correct and biblical, it will be brought to me personally, even though he takes it first to his local minister or one in Pastoral Administration at Pasadena. And God has always seen to it that my mind is open and able to see NEW TRUTH, or to admit ERROR if PROVED and then correct it. I know many will say Herbert Armstrong is human and subject to being prejudiced or closed-minded. I am human all right, but the living CHRIST has chosen me and MADE ME HIS APOSTLE. He is the DIVINE Head of this Church. Do you not think HE, the ALMIGHTY Christ, has power to see that my mind will be opened to either new truth or to correct error? Otherwise YOU QUESTION JESUS CHRIST!

Church is a spiritual organism

REMEMBER, this Church may be made up of mortal humans, of which YOU are one and I am one. But this Church of God is a SPIRITUAL ORGANISM — not a humanly organized and purely humanly led and influenced operation of MAN, started BY man, run by man! I’m afraid that is the point many of us have not realized. I shall write a separate article on that subject. Those of us IN God’s Church are HUMAN. But God has called each one of us or else we should never have been accepted into this holy fellowship. Our call has come from GOD! The HOLY SPIRIT of God has actually entered into each of us, or else we do not belong in this Church. It is a SPIRITUAL ORGANISM, not a human organization, though it is well ORGANIZED on GOD’S PATTERN and not as other purely human organizations. Now, do you not, then, understand that the living CHRIST has PUT HIS POWER, by the Holy Spirit, into His own chosen apostle, so that He is able to open His apostle’s mind to either new truth — as He has done repeatedly for 52 years — OR to recognize and purge out ERROR? Does CHRIST have that power — or do you question His power? It is not my human goodness — for that is nothing to brag about. I am talking about the LIVING JESUS’ power and ability!

You must study the Bible

SO UNDERSTAND. I certainly did not mean to say those in the Church must not study the Bible. Indeed everyone MUST! What I did mean is, if ever you think you see in your Bible that what I, or the Church, teach is in error — or if you see a biblical TRUTH the Church does NOT preach, then YOU MUST NOT MENTION THAT TO ANY OTHER MEMBER, OR TO ANYONE EXCEPT YOUR LOCAL PASTOR, OR WRITE TO THE PASADENA OFFICE OR DIRECT TO ME. Jesus Christ, through His POWER of the Holy Spirit, is guiding and ruling and heading this Church. It is ENERGIZED by a POWER that is MILLIONS OF TIMES GREATER THAN A HYDROGEN BOMB — yet this supreme POWER of God’s Holy Spirit is NOT SEEN — therefore the world knows NOTHING OF IT!]]>

DAILY WATCH | Revelation- Day of the Lord with Herbert W. Armstrong

Revelation- Day of the Lord | The World Tomorrow with Herbert W. Armstrong

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"False Conversion!" article from Herbert W. Armstrong

(Originally Published in the Plain Truth Magazine February 1982 Issue) [caption id="attachment_4397" align="alignleft" width="212"]False Conversion article by Herbert W. Armstrong This article is just one of many published in a NEW magazine called “Recapture True Values” published by wwcg-archives.com staff.[/caption] To download your Free Issue of our NEW magazine “Recapture True Values” – Click here! Millions have been led to think they are “saved,” who are only deceived and don’t know it! Here is a frank, daring article, making the truth PLAIN! IT’S DIFFICULT to believe, but it’s true. In today’s religious confusion millions have supposed they had salvation spiritually — they have believed on Jesus Christ — and are not saved! Would you suppose one could actually worship Christ — and all in vain? Do you know what Jesus himself said of these people who want to worship him without obedience to God’s Commandments? Listen to his words: “Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men… Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition” (Mark 7:7-9). Back to the Faith Once Delivered   But what does GOD tell you in his Word? Through Jude, God says: “Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints. For there are certain men crept in unawares … ungodly men, turning the GRACE of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ” (Jude 3-4). Yes, even before the New Testament was completely written, ungodly men had crept inside the Church to corrupt it — turning GRACE into LASCIVIOUSNESS. And what is “lasciviousness”? It means “license” — unrestrained liberty — abuse of privilege. In other words, license to do that which seems right in human eyes — according to human conscience — though it disobeys God’s LAW! And that is exactly what those ungodly men, even in the first century, did — turned GRACE into unrestrained privilege to disobey God’s law and turned to human conscience as a guide! And once introduced, the practice has persisted and spread over the whole world until today! This is one of the FABLES the apostle Paul warned us men would turn to. Paul said: “But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived. . . . For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts [lasciviousness — human reasoning] shall they … turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto FABLES” (II Tim. 3:13; 4:3, 4). But, one will argue, Jude said these men would deny the Lord Jesus Christ. Do not the men who teach a “no works” doctrine believe in Christ? Do they deny him? Yes, they DENY him! God says: “They profess that they know God; but IN WORKS they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every GOOD work reprobate” (Titus 1:16). The way of human reason — that seems RIGHT — is often DISOBEDIENCE to God!   What the Savior Himself Taught     These deceived teachers have just one favorite text. They quote Acts 16:31: “BELIEVE on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved.” Now that text from the inspired pen of Paul means what it says. But there are two kinds of BELIEVING — the living faith that brings salvation, and a dead “no works” faith that produces only DEATH! But WHY do they, in their tracts and their sermons, never quote what the Savior himself said in answer to the question? WHY? Jesus was asked: “What shall I do to inherit eternal life?” (Luke 18:18.) Some might try to tell you that the SAVIOR himself did not know, or teach, the way of SALVATION — he was teaching Old Testament religion. Well, he was asked HOW to gain ETERNAL LIFE. Is that salvation? It certainly is! Old Testament religion teaching lasted until John — not until the cross — not until “Pentecost.” Just UNTIL JOHN (Luke 16:16). Jesus preached the SAME gospel he commanded his disciples to teach ALL nations — gentiles included — the same gospel Paul preached to gentiles. He preached only the NEW Testament gospel. He revealed the WAY OF SALVATION. Here is his answer — that of the SAVIOR HIMSELF on HOW TO BE SAVED: “IF thou wilt enter into LIFE, keep the commandments.” And he enumerated enough of the Ten Commandments to show it was this particular law that must be obeyed AS A CONDITION to receiving eternal life as God’s GIFT. Jesus said “IF” — (THERE WAS A CONDITION) — “IF” we are to be saved, by God’s grace, WE MUST KEEP THE COMMANDMENTS! God lays down his own terms and conditions. His FREE GIFT is conditional — you get it ONLY if you “keep the commandments.” You can’t EARN it. God GIVES it — but only to those who “KEEP THE COMMANDMENTS.” God will not GIVE you eternal life in sin. And what is Sin? “SlN IS THE TRANSGRESSION OF THE LAW” (I John 3:4). Some who pervert God’s truth insist Jesus did not name ALL of the Ten Commandments in the above scripture. Sin is the transgression of THE LAW. It is a COMPLETE LAW. He named enough of its points to designate WHICH LAW he was talking about. And James says that law has “POINTS” — and, if we break any ONE of the 10 points of the Ten Commandments, We BREAK THE LAW, and are sinners (Jas. 2:8-11). The very same day the Holy Spirit came — the very day the NEW TESTAMENT Church commenced — thousands, hearing the inspired Peter’s sermon, which struck straight to their heart, asked, “What shall we do?” — yes, WHAT SHALL WE DO TO BE SAVED? The inspired answer was: “REPENT, and BE BAPTIZED every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Acts. 2:38). Jesus said, “REPENT YE, and BELIEVE THE GOSPEL.” We must BELIEVE not only in Jesus as Savior, but we must believe also THE GOSPEL he brought and preached — the Gospel of the Kingdom of God — the AUTHORITY of God and the WORD of God over our lives — a message not preached today by most organized churches! After his resurrection, in his parting instructions to his disciples for preaching the way of salvation, Jesus said: “Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day: and that REPENTANCE and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. And ye are witnesses of these things” (Luke 24:46-48). This is the gospel for ALL NATIONS! But what must we repent of? WHAT is SIN? Do you realize that VERY FEW people know? Very few know the BIBLE definition of SIN. God’s inspired definition of sin is this: “Sin is the transgression of the law” (I John 3:4). Paul would not have known what was sin, except by the law. But what law? The very law which says: “Thou shalt not covet” (Rom. 7:7). That law is the Ten Commandments. This law is summed up in the one word — LOVE! It is further defined in the two great Commandments, LOVE to God, and LOVE to neighbor. But the same law is further defined and divided into 10 points, by the Ten Commandments — the first four of which tell us how to love God, the last six of which tell us how to love neighbor. James’ Inspired Answer   And thus it is explained in James: “IF ye fulfil the royal law according to the scripture, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself, ye do well” (Jas. 2:8). Here is the royal law — the whole law — as a general principle. The law is LOVE — and LOVE is the fulfilling of the law. Jesus fulfilled it, setting us an example that we, too, should fulfill the law. We fulfill it with LOVE — not any natural, carnal love in human nature, but “the love of GOD is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit” (Rom. 5:5). The Holy Spirit in us is merely GOD’S LAW IN ACTION IN OUR LIVES! And so, if we fulfill this royal law we do well — but if not, we commit sin (Jas. 2:9). Now read verse 10. If we keep the WHOLE LAW — the general principle of LOVE to neighbor — yet offend in one point, we are guilty — we have broken the law — and the penalty is DEATH, not eternal life. Notice, please, the law is divided into points! And it is divided into 10 POINTS — the Ten Commandments. These are merely the 10 points, or subdivisions, of the general royal law, LOVE to God and to neighbor. “For he that said [or, that law which said], Do not commit adultery” said also, Do not kill. Now if thou commit no adultery” — if you do not break that specific point — “yet if thou kill” — you just break that one point — “thou art become a transgressor of the law” (Jas. 2:11). So you see the TEN COMMANDMENTS is the very law it is sin to transgress. It is a SPIRITUAL law (Rom. 7:14). It is fulfilled by the SPIRITUAL LOVE that is God’s precious gift to us — his love placed within us. “Wherefore the law is HOLY, and the commandment HOLY, AND JUST, AND GOOD” (Rom. 7:12). To REPENT of sin means to turn from sin. It means to QUIT SINNING! And that means to stop transgressing God’s holy law. And the way to stop breaking it is to begin KEEPING God’s Commandments — ALL OF THEM, for if you break only one, you bring on yourself the penalty —ETERNAL DEATH — and you lose salvation. Now Jesus “magnified the law, and made it honourable” (Isaiah 42:21). When we put a spiritual “magnifying glass,” so to speak, on the Ten Commandments, it is enlarged in spirit and principle into many more points. And in a larger aspect the ENTIRE BIBLE is a magnification of God’s law. The law is the basis of all Scripture. It defines THE WAY of life — the way to happiness, joy, eternal life! Notice how like God it is! The law is GOOD (Rom. 7:12). God is good. The law is HOLY (Rom. 7:12). GOD is holy! The law is JUST (Rom. 7:12). GOD is just! The law is SPIRITUAL (Rom. 7:14). GOD is spiritual! The law is PERFECT (Psalm 19:7). GOD is perfect! The law — including all his Commandments — is immutable, ETERNAL, stands fast FOREVER AND EVER (Ps. 111:7-8). And GOD is eternal! Of course — for the law is the very character, the very nature, of God! It is the WILL of God. Conscience Not Your Guide   But in the modern-day Babylon — confusion of conflicting teachings — you have been taught, falsely, that YOUR CONSCIENCE tells you what is sin. But your conscience only troubles you when you do what you THINK is wrong! And what you think is wrong, another may think is right! Your conscience is NO GUIDE! Sin is not the doing of what you think is wrong. Not the transgression of conscience — sin is the transgression of God’s LAW (I John 3:4). Sin is thinking and doing what GOD SAYS is wrong — and he says it in his law. One who does what he thinks is right may be committing a great deal of sin! God says: “There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of DEATH”! (Prov. 14:12 and 16:25.) Again, “The way of a fool is right in his own eyes” (Prov. 12:15). And: “All the ways of a man are clean in his own eyes” (Prov. 16:2). The world has been going the WAY that seems right to man for some 6,000 years. But this WAY has brought only unhappiness, emptiness, discontent, poverty, sickness and disease and finally, CHAOS and DESPAIR all over the world! It has produced NOTHING GOOD! God says: “SEEK YE the Lord while he may be found, call upon him while he is near; let the wicked forsake HIS WAY, and the unrighteous man HIS THOUGHTS: and let him return unto the Lord, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. FOR MY THOUGHTS ARE NOT YOUR THOUGHTS, NEITHER ARE YOUR WAYS MY WAYS, saith the Lord” (Isa. 55:6-8). And there is THE WAY of salvation! There is THE WAY to find GOD! SEEK HIM, by forsaking — WHAT? Forsaking YOUR WAY — your thoughts! The way you have THOUGHT to be right. The WAY of SALVATION   The first step toward salvation is to REPENT, and that means forsake your way — the customs and traditions you have been following, the ways of man, the ways you have been living. FORSAKE YOUR OWN WAY. Turn to God’s way — the way of HIS LAW! The way of HIS WILL! Yes, the WAY of success, achievement, doing good, of prosperity — the WAY Of ETERNAL LIFE! Since the entire Bible contains the magnified explanation of GOD’S LAW, the Bible becomes OUR GUIDE FOR RIGHTEOUS AND SUCCESSFUL LIVING! That is why Jesus said man shall live by every word of GOD! True repentance means you give your SELF to God. And the only kind of repentance that is prerequisite to the gift of eternal life is COMPLETE AND UNCONDITIONAL SURRENDER TO GOD — to his will, which means to HIS LAW. You become HIS, literally, and wholly, with no reservations! Repentance is a COMPLETE CHANGE in your life — in your attitude TOWARD life — your purpose in life — your THOUGHTS and your ACTIONS. It means forsaking some of your old friends and companions — if they are living the worldly life that seems right to MAN. It means turning from and forsaking worldly social and religious customs, interests, pleasures that are contrary to GOD’S WAYS. It means THE BIBLE becomes the SUPREME AUTHORITY over your life — your guide to living — yes, to happy, abundant, gracious living, and SUCCESSFUL and righteous living, henceforth and forever — to live your life from now on with GOD’S HELP, and BY HIS POWER, according to the spirit and principle, as well as the letter and precept of his Commandments. You henceforth STUDY THE BlBLE — not just carelessly read, but STUDY, to learn GOD’S WAYS, and to LIVE BY EVERY WORD OF GOD! Now ask yourself, candidly: How MANY people who profess salvation — who have “accepted Christ” — do you believe have REALLY COME TO THIS KIND OF REAL REPENTANCE? “Except ye REPENT,” warned Jesus, “ye shall all likewise PERISH” (Luke 13:3, 5). And again, “He that SAITH, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a LIAR, and the truth is not in him” (I John 2:4). Yes, MILLIONS ARE DECEIVED! But if millions are deceived about the prior CONDITION of repentance, just as many millions are deceived today as to the KIND OF FAITH that really SAVES! The FAITH That SAVES   Now think a moment! Use your REASON! We are taught, and rightly, that we cannot EARN our salvation — it is the GIFT of God. If is by GRACE — and “grace” means undeserved pardon and free gift. Yet, notice how inconsistent people are! They argue there must be NO WORKS — no OBEDIENCE to the Commandments, or doing GOOD — no recognizing of God’s AUTHORITY over your daily living — because salvation comes by GRACE — God’s free GIFT. And yet they seem to believe that somehow WE must supply the FAITH that brings salvation! If WE work up, or if WE supply this FAITH by which we are saved, would not that, in fact, amount to our producing our own salvation by the very WORKS of supplying this FAITH? So notice, briefly! Notice more CLOSELY than you did before! “For BY GRACE are ye saved through FAITH; and that [that FAITH] not of yourselves; it [this saving FAITH] is the gift Of GOD”! (Eph. 2:8.) The faith that really saves is GIVEN TO us by GOD — it is a GIFT from HIM! You don’t supply it, or work it up. Did you ever notice that before? Well, what then? In Gal. 2:16, Paul explains a man is justified only “by THE FAITH of Jesus Christ.” Notice, he does not say, by the man’s faith IN Jesus Christ — he says by “the faith of Jesus Christ” — which means CHRIST’S FAITH — the faith HE has and uses — the same faith with which he performed all his miracles — the same faith by which he lived — his faith, placed by a miracle, as a gift direct from God, into the man! So, PLEASE UNDERSTAND! Salvation is GOD’S GIFT. You do not, cannot, earn it. God GIVES it. But — and here is where people become mixed up, and stumble — God will GIVE it only on condition! Yes, there are terms and conditions! God has set these terms, and you can’t alter them, and he won’t change them! I want to make this perfectly PLAIN. It is not your faith in Christ — a faith YOU supply by BELIEVING in him as Savior — that saves you. It is CHRIST’S faith, which he supplies and places in you by his Holy Spirit, which actually IMPARTS ETERNAL LIFE. But WHAT, then? Is it not necessary for YOU to believe, with YOUR OWN faith, in Christ? Now let me make this PLAIN! Salvation is GOD’S FREE GIFT — it is by GRACE ALONE. Yet the very purpose of God demands TWO prior CONDITIONS on YOUR part. First, you must REPENT! Second, you must BELIEVE in Christ as Savior. But you cannot believe in Christ unless you also believe his message — the gospel of the Kingdom of God (Mark 16:15-16). But NEITHER your repentance, followed by your obedience, NOR YOUR faith earns any salvation! They are merely prior CONDITIONS. But when you supply these two ingredients, then God STANDS BOUND BY HIS PROMISE to impart to you by his Holy Spirit HIS righteousness, and CHRIST’S faith — and THESE, supplied by GOD, are the ingredients that SAVE AND IMPART ETERNAL LIFE! Paul explains: “Even we have believed IN Jesus Christ, that we might be justified BY THE FAITH OF CHRIST” (Gal. 2:16). You must repent and believe in Christ, as a condition, a prerequisite, IN ORDER THAT you may receive, and be saved by the faith OF Christ — by his faith placed within you! Cut Off From GOD   All have sinned! All have gone the way that seems right in human eyes. And our sins have cut us off from God: “Your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear” (Isa. 59:2). Now salvation — eternal life — comes from GOD. But your sins have cut you off from God. The connection is SEVERED. You severed it! God will not GIVE you his gift of eternal life until you are reconciled to him! But he so LOVED you, that he GAVE his only begotten Son, Jesus Christ, to DIE FOR YOU so that you need not perish — but, through Jesus Christ, be brought into contact with him so he can GIVE you eternal life! The PENALTY of transgressing his law is DEATH! Jesus paid that penalty in your stead. If, and when, you TRULY REPENT, as I have explained at length, and BELIEVE on Jesus Christ as your Lord and personal Savior from sin and from sinning, then by and through HIM you gain access to GOD THE FATHER. The two conditions of turning FROM sin, and accepting Christ (including baptism), YOU must DO YOURSELF! That’s what YOU must do! That is NOT what saves you! It merely reconciles you to GOD — brings you into CONTACT with God, so that God will then GIVE YOU his HOLY SPIRIT — and his SPIRIT imparts the gift of the FAITH that saves — and is also the Spirit of UNDERSTANDING, of knowledge, of the love that FULFILLS the law and imparts GOD’S righteousness. Millions have been deceived and . falsely believe that they have a salvation that they do NOT yet have at all! GOD HELP us, then, to UNDERSTAND. What You Should Do   Now, finally, just HOW shall you go about it? Must you go down the aisle in a church? Must you go to a public altar, and shed tears in front of others, and pray aloud before others? Being converted is not an initiation into a lodge or secret society! It is not a rite or ceremony! It is a matter of turning FROM the old life that was false, yet may have seemed right to you — of turning TO a new and TRUE way of life in Christ Jesus, living by every word of God, in and by the power of God’s Holy Spirit! When you UNDERSTAND the real MEANING and the PURPOSE, you’ll see that it is something that takes place down deep in your HEART and not a matter of THE PLACE or THE SURROUNDINGS, or the presence of other people. What Jesus said about confessing or denying him before men did not refer to a rite, or ceremonial form of being converted. Being converted is the receiving of the Holy Spirit — the very life — of God. You CAN, of course, make this full surrender and consecration to God in front of others, at an altar. You can, also, make it just as sincerely and fully, in a private room at home, all ALONE with God! You can pray in church before others and do it sincerely from the heart. Yet Jesus said, “When thou prayest, enter into thy closet [any private room], and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall, reward thee openly.” WHEN you have really repented — repented of what you are as well as what you have done — WHEN you come to this parting of the ways from the old life — when you come to the place of making this COMPLETE CHANGE — this total unconditional surrender to God — this complete consecration, GIVING your SELF to him, accepting Christ as your personal Savior — turning FROM your sins, and TO GOD’S way of life as you’ll find it in the Bible, you’ll want to PRAY! Yes, you’ll want to throw yourself completely on God’s mercy, and ask him through Jesus Christ to FORGIVE YOU all your past sins and transgressions against him. The apostle Paul reveals how. He confessed: “For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform “that which is good I find not. For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do” (Rom. 7:18-19). He saw human nature in its gruesome reality. He struggled with it — fought against it — only to find that it was more powerful than he! What could he do? Paul cried out, “O wretched man that I am! Who shall deliver me from the body of this death?” Read the answer to the problem in the Moffatt translation: “Miserable wretch that I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? GOD WILL! Thanks be to him through Jesus Christ our Lord!” (verses 24-25). It is not, perhaps, of great consequence where you do it! But the IMPORTANT thing is to DO IT! The longer you put repentance off the harder it will become. WHY it should be difficult to just go and throw yourself on God’s mercy, and ask his forgiveness and give your SELF to him, is hard to understand — yet something in the human nature within you will keep tempting you to PUT IF OFF. That temptation is not of God, you may be sure. If you are sick and tired of the empty, fruitless, materialistic life you have been living — IF in your heart you DO want to turn from it to the FULL and JOYFUL life filled with God’s SPIRIT, then WHY DELAY? This is just the start of the real Christian life. Don’t look for a certain feeling, but repent and believe.  ]]>

A CORRECTION  

A CORRECTION

by Herbert W. Armstrong page 4 Good News June/July 1979

In a recent issue of The Good News I mentioned that often I have said to the public, on the air or in The Plain Truth, “Don’t believe what I say because I say it, but look into your own Bible and believe what you see there.”

But then I said in this article that I do not say that to our own members. I think some may have gotten the idea I said members should not read the Bible or even read over what I have said to better understand by seeing it all in context for themselves.

Apparently some got the idea I said nonmembers must believe only what THEY SEE FOR THEMSELVES in the Bible, but that members must NOT read the Bible or believe it, but believe ONLY WHAT I say or write. Of course I did not mean that.

What I did mean is that members should have checked up in the Bible and assured themselves what God’s Church teaches is true BEFORE being baptized and coming into the Church. What I meant was that members should not disbelieve everything we teach and read the Bible for the purpose of trying to prove that we teach falsely.

I suppose the reason that came to mind is that we did have, a few years ago, a group of self-professed “intellectuals” who started a “doctrinal committee,” when their sole PURPOSE was to HARM God’s Church by trying to MISUSE the Bible and misinterpret it to try to convince others that the Church taught falsely — when in fact, this is the ONLY church on earth that DOES have the TRUTH!

Bible study encouraged

Let me make it crystal CLEAR! I encourage nonmembers to SEE the truth for themselves in their own Bibles. But, after one becomes a MEMBER, he is supposed to know we have the truth. He has checked up — he has seen it in his own Bible. Therefore I do NOT encourage members to QUESTION all over again what we preach.

I most certainly have always encouraged all members to read and study the Bible continually — to increase their own knowledge and understanding — but NOT to deliberately try to DISAGREE with the Church and study for the PURPOSE of disagreeing and causing dissension and division in the Church.

But, in continuous Bible study to ADD to one’s store of biblical knowledge, if one comes across a knowledge of something new to the Church — something not proclaimed or preached in the Church, he may go to his local pastor with it, or he may contact headquarters at Pasadena or he may bring it personally to me.

If it is either contrary to Church doctrine or something in ADDITION to Church doctrine, he MAY NOT spread it to other lay members. IF his new understanding is correct and biblical, it will be brought to me personally, even though he takes it first to his local minister or one in Pastoral Administration at Pasadena. And God has always seen to it that my mind is open and able to see NEW TRUTH, or to admit ERROR if PROVED and then correct it.

I know many will say Herbert Armstrong is human and subject to being prejudiced or closed-minded. I am human all right, but the living CHRIST has chosen me and MADE ME HIS APOSTLE. He is the DIVINE Head of this Church. Do you not think HE, the ALMIGHTY Christ, has power to see that my mind will be opened to either new truth or to correct error? Otherwise YOU QUESTION JESUS CHRIST!

Church is a spiritual organism

REMEMBER, this Church may be made up of mortal humans, of which YOU are one and I am one. But this Church of God is a SPIRITUAL ORGANISM — not a humanly organized and purely humanly led and influenced operation of MAN, started BY man, run by man!

I’m afraid that is the point many of us have not realized. I shall write a separate article on that subject.

Those of us IN God’s Church are HUMAN. But God has called each one of us or else we should never have been accepted into this holy fellowship. Our call has come from GOD! The HOLY SPIRIT of God has actually entered into each of us, or else we do not belong in this Church. It is a SPIRITUAL ORGANISM, not a human organization, though it is well ORGANIZED on GOD’S PATTERN and not as other purely human organizations.

Now, do you not, then, understand that the living CHRIST has PUT HIS POWER, by the Holy Spirit, into His own chosen apostle, so that He is able to open His apostle’s mind to either new truth — as He has done repeatedly for 52 years — OR to recognize and purge out ERROR? Does CHRIST have that power — or do you question His power? It is not my human goodness — for that is nothing to brag about. I am talking about the LIVING JESUS’ power and ability!

You must study the Bible

SO UNDERSTAND. I certainly did not mean to say those in the Church must not study the Bible. Indeed everyone MUST! What I did mean is, if ever you think you see in your Bible that what I, or the Church, teach is in error — or if you see a biblical TRUTH the Church does NOT preach, then YOU MUST NOT MENTION THAT TO ANY OTHER MEMBER, OR TO ANYONE EXCEPT YOUR LOCAL PASTOR, OR WRITE TO THE PASADENA OFFICE OR DIRECT TO ME.

 

Jesus Christ, through His POWER of the Holy Spirit, is guiding and ruling and heading this Church. It is ENERGIZED by a POWER that is MILLIONS OF TIMES GREATER THAN A HYDROGEN BOMB — yet this supreme POWER of God’s Holy Spirit is NOT SEEN — therefore the world knows NOTHING OF IT!

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The "Stare in the pretty lights my pretties" documentary sheds light on problems faced by modern society

STARE IN THE LIGHTS MY PRETTIES

Storyline:

Look around you. People appear to be permanently glued to their electronic devices. Heads bowed and eyes transfixed, our society has been hijacked by these dominating technologies. In less than the span of a single lifetime, we have advanced from rustic computers the size of buildings to extremely capable mobile devices that fit in the palms of our hands. We haven’t even stopped to catch our breath. That’s precisely was Stare Into the Lights My Pretties aims to do. This engrossing and ambitious feature-length documentary outlines the progression of our computerized world, and examines its consequences to this and future generations. We’ve become fully enveloped in a screen culture. The average person spends more time staring at a screen on any given day than they do sleeping. This has drastically altered the way we interact with others, conduct our personal and business affairs, and experience the world in general. These stimuli are all about shallow sensation, distraction and instant gratification. What they often fail to provide is context, metaphor or meaning. They are changing the way we learn, and the lessons they’re teaching don’t incite critical thought or require a prolonged attention span. In the film’s view, screen culture has also empowered corporate and government interests with the ideal narcotic with which to control us. Your Google searches offer these structures an unprecedented glimpse into your thoughts, desires, political leanings and other defining characteristics. Everyone from advertisers to politicians have used this data to modify our behaviors and make us subservient to their cause. Online surveillance constitutes a major threat to our basic right of privacy. Yet many users have accepted this intrusion as a necessary evil. Once we willingly relinquish our rights, and allow our lives to become fully immersed in the fantasy fulfillment of our machines, then we have lost our capacity for empathy and autonomy. On a technical level, Stare Into the Lights My Pretties is top-notch; its ambient scoring and inventive editing style give the film a mesmerizing pull. The filmmakers pose moral and ethical questions that couldn’t be more timely or profound. What kind of world do we want to live in, and do we have the willpower to change it? Directed by: Jordan Brown

Rev 18:1  And after these things I saw another angel come down from heaven, having great power; and the earth was lightened with his glory. Rev 18:2  And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird. Rev 18:3  For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies. Rev 18:4  And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. Rev 18:5  For her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities.    
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COMING SOON- The Captivity of the American and British Peoples!

This is a two part article, updated with recent events(December 2020). The first article is important to set the stage, the second is a article from Forbes about multiple corporate entities coming together under the Vatican to create a new economic system, one corporation being the “Treasurer of the State of California” along with Banks, and other companies connected to the operation of this country.


Part I


COMING SOON- The Captivity of the American and British Peoples!

On July 11, 2013 Pope Francis gave an Apostolic Letter issued “Motu Proprio”, defining the jurisdiction the Vatican City State has over criminal matters among the “international community”. It begins: [Begin Quote]“In our times, the common good is increasingly threatened by transnational organized crime, the improper use of the markets and of the economy, as well as by terrorism.

It is therefore necessary for the international community to adopt adequate legal instruments to prevent and counter criminal activities, by promoting international judicial cooperation on criminal matters.

In ratifying numerous international conventions in these areas, and acting also on behalf of Vatican City State, the Holy See has constantly maintained that such agreements are effective means to prevent criminal activities that threaten human dignity, the common good and peace.”[End Quote]
The leader of both the Roman Catholic Church and the Vatican City State speaks of threats increasing against the “common good”. What is the “common good” according to the Roman Catholic Church?
Social life”, writes Beth Haile the author of “What Is The Common Good?” published by uscatholic.org, “is a lot like being on a sports team. Individual players want to be as successful as possible, perhaps by scoring lots of points. The ultimate goal of each player, however, is the success of the team, a goal more than the sum of every player’s statistics. A team does not win because each player tries to score as many points as possible, but conditions do need to be optimal for each individual player to play well in order for a team to win. The good of both the individual and the team are interdependent.

The common good is a lot like the set of “optimal conditions” that allow both the team and its players to succeed. In theological terms the common good is defined in Pope John XXIII’s encyclical Materet Magistra (On Christianity and Social Progress) as “the sum total of social conditions which allow people, either as groups or as individuals, to reach their fulfillment more fully and more easily.”
She continues, “Solidarity encourages us to see one another as each other’s keepers, to make sure that no individual is hogging the ball. Also necessary is the state, which acts a lot like a coach to “guarantee the coherency, unity, and organization of the civil society” (
Compendium, 168).”
She ends her article, “Because society is always evolving, the concrete demands of the common good will also evolve. This means that the task of creating a good life for all members of society is never perfectly realized. Because of the pervasive temptations of individualism and self-interest, one of the most pressing demands of the common good is the persistent conversion of hearts in the realization that we do not exist for ourselves.”[End of Quote]
So “the common good” for the Catholic Church is a unification(solidarity) of all members of society, ruled by a STATE acting as a coach to [Quote]“guarantee the coherency, unity, and organization of the civil society” (
Compendium, 168).”[End Quote].
What the Pope is talking about in the first paragraphs of his “Motu Proprio”(meaning “of his own accord”), is how the “international community” is being urged by the Holy See to come together in agreements UNDER, mind you, UNDER the Vatican City State(through legal instruments) to combat the threats on the “common good” or the unification agenda.

The Pope has issued an official “legal instrument” in his capacity as supreme sovereign PONTIFF, leader of the Vatican City State(not as apostolic leader and teacher of the Universal Church), declaring [Quote]“THE JURISDICTION OF JUDICIAL AUTHORITIES OF VATICAN CITY STATE IN CRIMINAL MATTERS”[End Quote]
So, if you are found guilty of an act declared by the Vatican City State or by someone in the “international community” as a “crime”, you come under the Judicial jurisdiction of the Vatican City State.
Herbert W. Armstrong, in a sermon titled “United States of Europe Is Coming!”, given November 27, 1982, said [Begin Quote]“Revelation 17:3-5 I saw a woman sit upon a scarlet colored beast (Now the beast is the civil government, the political government. The woman is a church. A “beast…”), full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns. (4) And the woman was arrayed in purple (That is the color of royalty.) and scarlet (The color of a harlot, or a whore. “And scarlet…”) color, and decked with gold and precious stones and pearls, having a golden cup in her hand (A woman is always the symbol of a church. A civil government is spoken of in a masculine gender in symbol in the Bible. “…in her hand”) full of abominations and the filthiness of her fornication. (5) And upon her forehead (the church’s forehead) was a name written, MYSTERY BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS…

“In other words, the Babylonian MYSTERY religion, the ancient PAGAN “BABYLONIAN MYSTERY RELIGION”–now called, falsely, “Christianity” and claiming to be the original Church. And notice that: THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS who came out of her protesting and calling themselves “Protestant,” in protest. And God calls them “harlots,” brethren. Now, they are deceived. They don’t know it. I am not calling them names. I am reading you what God says. It is God who is doing. God has a right to call them names if He wants to. I am not doing it.
“Revelation 17:5 …HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.
“This thing is FILTHY in God’s sight, and yet we’ve come up among some of that. WE’VE BELIEVED A LOT OF THAT; and Christ has said COME OUT FROM AMONG THEM AND BE SEPARATE. Christ has called His Church out from among all of that–to be separate, brethren; and we have to live a different kind of life.
“Revelation 17:6 And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the saints.
“You know that she called them… If they kept the Sabbath instead of Sunday, they were declared “heretic,” or “anathema from Christ.” Now the accusation “anathema from Christ” made by the church was considered a capital crime by the government. And the government, the political state, put them to death; and they were martyred. And the woman is drunken on the blood of the saints. The woman says, “Oh, I never killed anybody. Oh, no, we didn’t put anyone to death. No, we just pronounced them ‘anathema from Christ.’ It is the government; the government put them to death.” But the woman sat on top of the beast.
“A woman riding a horse is weaker. The horse is much stronger. It carries her, but she makes it go! You know, “gee” or “haw,” turning right or left. And she controls it, and guides it–which way it goes, and what it does. And that’s exactly what happened, a woman riding a beast.


“Revelation 17:6 And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus: and when I saw her, I wondered with great admiration.”

[End of Quote]

The woman, depicted in Revelation 17, this GREAT & POWERFUL CHURCH, governs a CITY STATE- a political civil government. And so what has been set up, is the jurisdiction of the Vatican City State in criminal matters. The leader of the Vatican is also the leader of the Roman Catholic Church! Pope Francis!
This only touches on a small piece of what this “Motu Proprio” is talking about. It is about who is UNDER the jurisdiction of the judicial authority of the Vatican City State.


[Begin Quote]With a view to renewing the Apostolic See’s commitment to cooperate to these ends, by means of this Apostolic Letter issued Motu Proprio, I establish that:

1. The competent Judicial Authorities of Vatican City State shall also exercise penal jurisdiction over: a) crimes committed against the security, the fundamental interests or the patrimony of the Holy
See;

b) crimes referred to: – in Vatican City State Law No. VIII, of 11 July 2013, containing
Supplementary Norms on Criminal Law Matters; – in Vatican City State Law No. IX, of 11 July
2013, containing Amendments to the Criminal Code and the Criminal Procedure Code; when
such crimes are committed by the persons referred to in paragraph 3 below, in the exercise of
their functions;

c) any other crime whose prosecution is required by an international agreement ratified by the
Holy See, if the perpetrator is physically present in the territory of Vatican City State and has not been extradited.

2. The crimes referred to in paragraph 1 are to be judged pursuant to the criminal law in force in Vatican City State at the time of their commission, without prejudice to the general principles of the legal system on the temporal application of criminal laws.
3. For the purposes of Vatican criminal law, the following persons are deemed “public officials”:
a) members, officials and personnel of the various organs of the Roman Curia and of the Institutions connected to it.
b)papal legates and diplomatic personnel of the Holy See.
c)those persons who serve as representatives, managers or directors, as well as persons who even de facto manage or exercise control over the entities directly dependent on the Holy See and listed in the registry of canonical juridical persons kept by the Governorate of Vatican City State;
d)any other person holding an administrative or judicial mandate in the Holy See, permanent or temporary, paid or unpaid, irrespective of that person’s seniority.”

[End of Quote]

What this has created, is a PUBLIC TRUST, with “public officials”, placing under the Vatican City State those of the “international community”who are cooperating with the Vatican through “agreement”(legal instruments), which is being urged by the Holy See.
The “persons”(fictitious entities) under the Vatican City State are deemed “public officials”.
Now in 1979 the State declared Herbert W. Armstrong a “public official”, answerable to the State, and the Worldwide Church of God as a “Public Trust”, answerable to the State. Mr. Armstrong and the WCG proved in court that the State acted illegally, and the WCG was NOT a “Public trust”, and that Herbert W. Armstrong was not a “public official”. In order for the State to take over the Church, they first declared this.

Now, if the nation you reside in, signs an agreement and voluntary places themselves under the Vatican City State, they come under the jurisdiction of the Vatican City State.
Herbert W. Armstrong continued in his sermon “United States of Europe Is Coming!”(availableo n wwcg-archives.com), saying [Begin Quote] “Revelation 17:12 …the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast.
The beast will be over the ten nations. Each nation will have a king on its throne. It may be five in Western Europe, five in Eastern Europe…
[Continuing]“Revelation 17:13-14 These have one mind, and shall give their power and (their) strength unto the beast (That’s in the military power of their nations.), (14) and these shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them: for he is Lord of lords, and King of kings…
“That means the Second Coming of Christ! THEY WILL FIGHT AGAINST CHRIST WHEN HE COMES. That gets you down to the very time just before the Second Coming of Christ. (Now, I’m afraid I am going to have to take a little extra time. I’ve still got a little time, and hopefully I can get this without going over time.)
“But now next, I want to show you what connection that has with the Great Tribulation, and with the United States, and with us. Isaiah 47 now. Back in Isaiah 47 and beginning in verse one. Now, let me see. I want the first seven verses…
“Isaiah 47:1-7 Come down (This is a prophecy. “Come down…”), and sit in the dust, O virgin daughter of Babylon…
“Now remember the ancient Babylon was always a “he,” masculine gender, under King Nebuchadnezzar 604 years before Christ, down to 554 BC. That was in the masculine gender. But this is a DAUGHTER of that Babylon. This is a CHURCH. Remember the “her” is always a church.
“Isaiah 47:1-6 Come down, and sit in the dust, O virgin daughter of Babylon, sit on the ground: there is no throne, O daughter of the Chaldeans: (A church that has been riding on top of governments speaking different languages. This ties right in with what I just read you in the book of Revelation): for thou shalt no more be called tender and delicate (in female terms). (2)Take the millstones, and grind meal; uncover thy locks, make bare the leg, uncover the thigh, pass over the rivers. (3)Thy nakedness shall be uncovered, yea, thy shame shall be seen; (and) I will take vengeance (That’s God speaking. “I will take vengeance…”), and I will not meet thee as a man. (That is, God won’t meet as a man.) (4) As for our redeemer, the (Eternal) of hosts is his name, the Holy One of Israel (meaning Christ). (5) Sit thou silent, and get thee into darkness, O daughter of the Chaldeans: for thou shalt no more be called, the lady of kingdoms. (A church riding over governments, “the lady of kingdoms.” God says:) (6) I was wroth with my people.
“His people are Israel, and we are Israel. And you have to know ‘who is Israel’ and ‘who is Judah’ to understand this. “I was wroth with My people.”
“Isaiah 47:6-7 I have polluted mine inheritance (which is Israel), and given them into thine hand (This church riding over the kingdoms. “And given them into thine hand.”): thou did show them no mercy (Now notice that–“Thou did show them no mercy.”): upon the ancient hast thou very heavily laid thy yoke. (Notice: that yoke is going to be on our people by this very UNITED EUROPE.) (7) And thou saidst, I shall be a lady for ever (This is the daughter of Babylon.): so that thou didst not lay these things to (thy) heart, neither didst remember the latter end of it.
“Now there is a great deal more to the prophecy, and I’m just cutting it short to give you the general meat of it as quickly as possible. It’s addressed to the house of Israel. The next chapter starts out, “Hear this, O ye house of Israel” (7) and so on. Now this message, all the way through, is to the house of Israel–which is Britain, and the United States, and the English-speaking people.”

[End of Quote]

Now, in the United States, we have a particular problem.
Since the Great Depression of 1929, the citizens of the United States of America have been used as collateral for the National Debt. The “New Deal” was given to us. Every citizen was required to have a “birth certificate” and a “social security number” registered.
Now the United States was in debt to foreign banks. They just experienced a financial crisis this nation never had seen before! Creditors called due the loan the United States had taken out. Now, the United States required MORE collateral in order to float the loan. They came up with an idea, or the idea was given to them.
Upon a child’s birth, the State would incorporate a “legal entity” using the child’s name. Little “billy johnson”, would have a D.B.A created for him recorded as “WILLIAM JOHNSON”(all capital letters-signifying a corporation) which is placed on the birth certificate printed on “bond paper”. Now this “treasury bond”, your “birth certificate”, is worth at least 1 million dollars when created. The United States Government measured the average “future energy” created by the child born, to be around 1 million dollars. That is the amount they deemed the average citizen would earn the Creditors in their lifetime.(first the United States indebted to International banks, owned ultimately by the Vatican-thus indebted to Rome- “All roads lead to Rome”.)
Through making a D.B.A for it’s citizens, the United States was able to add the citizens as the collateral for the national debt. They took out a greater loan, using the citizens as collateral, using their future earnings to pay off the national debt. The United States has been in perpetul national bankruptcy since before the declaration of independence. The people borrowed money to come to this country and to start it. They’ve been in debt and servitude ever since to Rome through British Throne(that has been taken over by Rome).
So everyone(from birth) has a corporation created on their behalf, printed on a “treasury bond” called the birth certificate, showing that this corporation is worth at least a million dollars. This treasury bond, is traded down on Wall Street as a commodity.
Now, under the State level, this personal corporation operates. If you reside in the State of Ohio, the citizenship belongs to your “personal corporation” registered on your birth certificate.
So, the citizens of the United States are tied in with the National Debt.
If such a debt was suddenly called DUE, the American people(the flesh and blood human beings) would be the collateral our creditors would seize as payment for that debt! Much like how a child is seized by the government away from the parents, becoming a ward of the State. Citizens will be plucked away to become wards of another government!
If you put up your house as collateral for a loan, and you cannot make the payment, the Bank comes and takes the collateral you used!
The Bible prophesies such a thing will happen to the American and British peoples!

Herbert W. Armstrong, in his article “Russia in Prophecy”, published in the April 1981 issue of the Plain Truth Magazine, said [Begin Quote]“Notice more of this warning:
“A third part of thee [America-Britain] shall die with the pestilence, and with famine shall they be consumed in the midst of thee: and a third part shall fall by the sword round about thee; and I will scatter a third part into all the winds [in captivity being removed from our own land and scattered over the world]…” (verse 12).  “Coming to chapter 6, the local scene of the vision shifts to the mountainous land of ancient Israel, in the Middle East–but the message is for AMERICA AND BRITAIN, today.
“Will we heed it? God help us to wake up!
“Listen: “Behold I, even I,” says the Eternal God (verse 3), “will bring a sword [invasion] upon you, and I will destroy your high places …. And I will lay the dead carcases of the children of ISRAEL before their idols; and I will scatter your bones round about your altars. In all your dwelling places the cities shall be laid waste [nuclear bombing]…. And ye shall know that I am the Lord” (verses 5-7).
“Just a small remnant shall escape and be spared (verse 8). These are described in Luke 21:36.
“Continue: “Thus saith the Lord God…. Alas for all the evil abominations of [not Judah, but] the house of Israel! for they shall [not did, in the captivity 130 years before Ezekiel wrote, but shall] fall by the sword, by the famine, and by the pestilence” (verse 11).
“The Time Is Yet Future
“This is not a popular message. You probably have never heard it before. The preachers and teachers of prophecy almost unanimously will rise up to deny this warning message–to apply it to a different time or people. But the warning is from the Eternal God, and it is sure! The reader will do well to heed.”

[End of Quote]
 
Now, under the State government, are the citizens of the State. Now, filed under the jurisdiction of the State is a “non-profit religious organization”, and such an organization is incorporated in its desired STATE it wants to be filed in. It is also registered with FEDERAL agencies.
A 501(c)(3) organization, is a creature of the State, or a corporation under the jurisdiction of the State it is filed in.
The people who operate these “organizations” have a ‘hold harmless agreement and indemnity contract” with the organization, protecting themselves with a relative shield.
The people who fund, and donate to these “not-for-profit” organizations calling themselves “churches”, are the ones who are really in DANGER!
Because the “tax-exemption status” of the organization relies on how well the organization obeys the regulations and restrictions placed on it by the State.
If they lose “tax-exemption status”, then all the money received by donors is deemed “taxable income”. Therefore the organization is required to pay all back taxes on such income plus interest.
Those who donated to these organizations, wrote off their donation as “tax-deductable”. But when the organization loses its “tax exemption status”, their donations are no longer “tax-deductable” but now TAXABLE. Therefore, they are in danger of owing back taxes, unpaid to the government PLUS INTEREST.
This places the organization, and the people in the position of DEBTOR, or SLAVE.
So when those of this nation who are left are taken away as slaves/captives by Europe, they are taken away as DEBTORS by their creditors.
Jesus Christ through Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong protected the Worldwide Church of God from this sort of thing.

The Unincorporated spiritual organism, aka the Worldwide Church of God, was raised up first, and then a “corporation” was created for the benefit of the Worldwide Church of God, in the State of California. This is required by the State to handle large sums of money, property and real estate. Mr. Armstrong, as an official of this “corporation”, declared that the Unincorporated Church was not liable and responsible for the actions of the corporation. The officers of the corporation, including himself, had a Hold harmless agreement and indemnity contract with the corporation. They were protected, and Mr. Armstrong gave protection to the Unincorporated Worldwide Church of God.
The “WORLDWIDE CHURCH OF GOD INCORPORATED, a California corporation”, was the corporation OF the Worldwide Church of God. The name belonged to the CHURCH, which was Unincorporated. It was used by the corporation on behalf of the Church. Much like how you set up a bank account for a fundraiser. You must mention who will benefit from the account. For instance this fictitious example: “Fundraiser for the Southern Baptist Church of Houston Texas”. The benefactor was listed in the incorporation.
What was recorded on legal paper, is that this corporation(WWC Inc) was the corporation OF the Worldwide Church of God. The corporation was NOT the Church as Mr. Armstrong made very clear.
Now Mr. Armstrong as leading official of the CORPORATION, gave “liberty” to the membership who supported the corporation. He acted in the capacity of a head of state. He gave liberty to the members who funded and backed him and the corporation. He protected them. He was essentially a type of Zerubbabel, who was governor of Judah. Mr. Armstrong was the liaison between the Church and the governments of this world. A true Ambassador!

What other churches have done, is done the opposite of what Herbert W. Armstrong did. They place their membership in danger of being the surety that will be used to pay off DEBTS incurred by either the organization or the government that governs over the organization. They, like Korah, wanted to go back to Egypt, become slaves once again in order to reap the benefits of being a debtor slave in Egypt!
So what the Pope is saying in this legal document of 2013, is that the nations who come under the authority of the Vatican City State, through agreement(legal instruments), are under the jurisdiction of the Vatican. That means, the Federal corporation(government), the State corporation(government), the corporations filed under the State- which is either the 501(c)(3) organization or the citizen themselves!
The Bible says our peoples will end up being taken away as SLAVES.
Now when the Pope first visited the United States back on September 23, 2015 , he said something very interesting!
He said, [Begin Quote]“Mr. President, I find it encouraging that you are proposing an initiative for reducing air pollution.   Accepting — Accepting the urgency, it seems clear to me also that climate change is a problem [which] can no longer be left to our future generation.   When it comes to the care of our common home, we are living at a critical moment of history.  We still have time to make the change needed to bring about a “sustainable and integral development, for we know that things can change.”
“Such — Such change demands on our part a serious and responsible recognition not only of the kind of the world we may be leaving to our children, but also to the millions of people living under a system which has overlooked them.  Our common home has been part of this group of the excluded, which cries out to heaven and which today powerfully strikes our homes, our cities, our societies.  To use a telling phrase of the Reverend Martin Luther King, we can say that we have “defaulted on” a “promissory note”, and “now is the time” to honor it.”
He continues, “Humanity still has the ability to work together in building our common home” (Laudato Si’, 13). As Christians inspired by this certainty, we wish to commit ourselves to the conscious and responsible care of our common home.
“Mr. President, the efforts which were recently made to mend broken relationships and to open new doors to cooperation within our human family represent positive steps along the path of reconciliation, justice and freedom. I would like all men and women of good will in this great nation to support the efforts of the international community to protect the vulnerable in our world and to stimulate integral and inclusive models of development, so that our brothers and sisters everywhere may know the blessings of peace and prosperity which God wills for all his children.”
[End Quote]

This ties back in with the 2013 document speaking about the “common good”, or the unification of the international community under the Vatican City State. Pope Francis was heard urging the President towards “the change needed to bring about a “sustainable and integral development”.
He as leader of the Vatican City State, gave notice to the United States that the Debt is now DUE. Change must happen. HONOR THE DEBT.
Where does that place the American people?
This is all part of Bible Prophecy and God says our nations will go through this!
Now, being a member of one of these “churches” which are just organizations or corporations under the jurisdiction of the State, is voluntarily placing yourself as a DEBTOR under the creditor of this nation- which the Pope seems to believe is HIMSELF!
This 2013 “Motu Proprio” is just the groundwork for what is to come!
For more information about what the coming Beast Power and what the Roman Catholic Church will be doing, read Mr. Armstrong’s book “Who or What Is The Prophetic Beast?”.
Also, what will happen to the American, and British peoples? Who will deliver us from such troubles? The Bible foretells the events that will ROCK YOUR WORLD in the near future! Read Mr. Armstrong’s detailed book “The United States and Britain in Prophecy”. THERE IS GOOD NEWS!

In Christ’s Service,
Tim Kitchen Sr.
Samuel W. Kitchen
Timothy Kitchen Jr.


Part II


Please note the companies partnering with The Vatican. Banks and lending companies. Petrol companies, companies that have reigns on this country! The Captivity is starting. Are we going to be caught in Satan’s trap?

Google search results on The Council of Inclusive Capitalism – https://www.google.com/search?q=The+Council+for+Inclusive+Capitalism&oq=The+Council+for+Inclusive+Capitalism

Source: Forbes.com

“Dec 9, 2020,10:59am EST

Pope Francis Partners With Corporate Titans To Make Capitalism More Inclusive And Fair: Is This For Real Or Just Corporate Virtue Signaling?

Pope Francis, aware of the fast-growing global wealth inequality between the ultra-wealthy and the rest of society, has proposed a challenge to corporate executives and public sector leaders to adopt a more inclusive, fair and transparent economic system that is equipped to address the dire challenges plaguing humanity and Earth.

“The world is rich, and yet the number of poor people is swelling all around us,” said Pope Francis. With the increasing wealth inequality, the pope pointed to the current challenges facing humanity, “Hundreds of millions of people are struggling in extreme poverty, and are lacking food, housing, healthcare, schooling, electricity, and drinkable water.

In response to the pope’s exhortation, business and public sector leaders formed an historic partnership with the Vatican. The Council for Inclusive Capitalism will serve as a movement to address the economic and environmental needs of the planet and its inhabitants. The council “boasts over more than $10.5 trillion in assets under management, companies with over $2.1 trillion of market capitalization and 200 million workers in over 163 countries.”

It should be noted that these extremely wealthy executives are not adversaries of capitalism, citing that the system has helped billions of people abscond poverty. However, the group acknowledges that capitalism has perilously left people behind, while also taking a toll on the planet. Ultimately, the partnership calls for a moral redress.

The “Guardians,” as the council members are called, are top executives of the world’s leading corporations who have promised to take bold actions toward creating inclusive capitalism. The Guardians will hold themselves accountable, committing to a list of intended actions involving environmental, social and governance matters. The Guardians, at their respective companies, have said they plan to hire and promote more women, increase diversity hires, commit to clean energy by purchasing 100% renewable electricity, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, promote the reuse and recycling of water and other initiatives.

The list of Guardians is lengthy and continues to grow. Here are some examples of the business leaders who have joined this mission:

Ajay Banga, president and CEO, Mastercard
Oliver Bäte, chairman of the board of management, Allianz SE
Marc Benioff, chair, CEO, and founder, Salesforce
Edward Breen, executive chairman, Dupont
Lady Lynn Forester de Rothschild, founder and managing partner, Inclusive Capital Partners
Kenneth Frazier, chairman of the board and CEO, Merck
Alex Gorsky, chairman of the board and CEO, Johnson & Johnson
Alfred Kelly, chairman and CEO, Visa
William Lauder, executive chairman, Estée Lauder
Bernard Looney, CEO, BP
Brian Moynihan, chairman of the board and CEO, Bank of America
Ronald P. O’Hanley, president and CEO, State Street Corporation
Rajiv Shah, president, the Rockefeller Foundation
According to the New York Times, “There are reasons to be both hopeful and skeptical of the initiative. The corporate pledges are meaningful, but some aren’t new: BP, for example, restates a commitment to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050 that it announced in February. And while the council has posted the pledges publicly, there’s not much to hold the companies accountable (aside from the risk of disappointing the pope).”

While we applaud the people who try to make the world a better place, there is an irony that can’t be ignored. The same people who are calling for an end to wealth and income inequality are extraordinarily wealthy. Of course, the noted leaders like capitalism, it’s been very good to them.

According to Forbes, Marc Benioff, the CEO of Salesforce, is worth nearly $90 billion. William Lauder, the executive chairman of Estée Lauder, has a net worth of $3.5 billion.

Lady Lynn Forester de Rothschild, the founder and managing partner of Inclusive Capital Partners, has her own wealth, but is also married to Sir Evelyn De Rothschild. He is the scion of one of world’s wealthiest family dynasties and is estimated to be worth $20 billion.

According to salary.com, Ajay Banga, the CEO of Mastercard, earned $23.2 million in total compensation for 2019. Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan reaped $25.4 million in total compensation for 2019. These numbers don’t include any accumulated stock that they may own in their respective companies or their entire net worth.

There is nothing wrong with the Guardians being in the top 1%. However, these business leaders are the people that the pope points to when he calls out wealth inequality. Their massive wealth begs the question, since they have the financial means, why aren’t they personally leading by example? Why not write a large personal check, without claiming it as a tax write-off? When their corporations take actions, the monies don’t come out of the pockets of the executives, but are indirectly supported by the shareholders.

The wealthy elites could consider getting their own houses in order before trying to change the world. The CEOs are able to ask for and accept significantly less compensation and wave all of their stock options and lavish bonuses. They could certainly live on a $5 million salary and the other $20 million could be shared with their workers. Instead of accumulating all of the stock options, the executives should offer them to their employees, so that they have equity in their companies.

The titans of industry have the power to provide enhanced health insurance, additional vacation days, flexible work schedules, pensions, access to mental health resources and longer maternity and paternity leave. Who will be the first CEO to step down and replace himself with a person of color or woman?

The Guardians can exert peer pressure on fellow industry chief executive officers. They could ask Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, Apple’s Tim Cook, Google’s Sundar Pichai and others to relinquish the fortunes they’ve accumulated during the Covid-19 pandemic and redistribute it to this initiative.

The glaring concern is that this partnership ends up as a public relations bonanza for the executives involved. They’ll bask in the glory of favorable media attention and virtue signal how wonderful and caring they all are. I’ll follow up in the New Year to report their progress—if any.”

REDEFINITION OF GNOSTICIMS AND PELAGIANISM- How this can affect YOU and God's Church!

POPE REDEFINES GNOSTICISM AND PELAGIANISM A recent article written by Jesuit Fr. Thomas Reese titled: “Pope Francis warns of two paths to holiness” was published this month concerning “gnosticism” & “pelagianism”. This article states:

As a spiritual guide to those seeking to be better Christians, Pope Francis recognizes that many are tempted to follow the wrong paths to holiness. These are not bad people following the path of sin, but good people getting lost in the woods without a map. Francis believes that it is especially important to warn Christians of two false paths to holiness. In Chapter 2 of Gaudete et Exsultate, an apostolic exhortation released in March, Francis explains that these are not new temptations. Christians through the centuries have been so tempted, and spiritual writers have labeled these false paths Gnosticism and Pelagianism. These are old temptations repackaged for a new age.
In Gnosticism, perfection is measured by information and knowledge or by some special experience, not by one’s charity. The Gnostic takes pride in understanding everything, in having special knowledge. “Gnostics think that their explanations can make the entirety of the faith and the Gospel perfectly comprehensible,” explains Francis. “They absolutize their own theories and force others to submit to their way of thinking.” They “reduce Jesus’ teaching to a cold and harsh logic that seeks to dominate everything.”
Notice, Pope Francis is RE-defining what a Gnostic is. If someone, let’s say a man with God’s Holy Spirit, teaches what the Bible says and makes it easy to understand for the reader or listener(as Herbert W. Armstrong was used by Christ in doing), the Pope here is labeling such a man of God a “Gnostic”. If such a man of God says that Jesus’ teaching is “everything”, he is labeled by the Pope as “Gnostic”. This is RE-defining by the Pope.
Francis considers Gnosticism one of the most sinister ideologies because, “while unduly exalting knowledge or a specific experience, it considers its own vision of reality to be perfect.” Gnostics “domesticate mystery” and think they know everything.
I am reminded of “The Mystery of the Ages” book written by Herbert W. Armstrong. In this book, Mr. Armstrong goes to the Bible to make plain the “Seven Mysteries” that so many do not understand! It is an astounding book, unlike any other! Now, many dissenters have argued, that when they struggle to disprove the teachings of God’s apostle, that Mr. Armstrong and those of the Worldwide Church of God(called by enemies: “Armstrongites”) “think they know everything” and that “they think their teachings are perfect”. So who is the Pope, leader of the Catholic Church, speaking against? Things begin to add up as you progress through this article, and there is no doubt whom they are talking about and against.
“When somebody has an answer for every question, it is a sign that they are not on the right road,” according to Francis. “God infinitely transcends us; he is full of surprises,” explains Francis. “Someone who wants everything to be clear and sure presumes to control God’s transcendence.”
God’s Word says: “…be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear”(1 Peter 3:15). Pope Francis says that if someone has an answer, and wants everything to be clear and “sure” is sharing a character trait of a “Gnostic” So those like Peter and Paul, are like Gnostics? “Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are his. And, Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity.”(2 Tim. 2:19) “Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall: For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.”(2 Peter 1:10-11) “We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts: Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.”( 2 Peter 1:19-21)
The Gnostics’ conviction that they alone have the truth leads them to claim that their way of understanding the truth authorizes them to exercise a strict supervision over others’ lives.
“No one on earth has this truth but this Church.” (Herbert W. Armstrong, “Congress of Leading Ministers” Worldwide News Special Issue, March 6, 1981)   Study what the original apostles, and the apostle Paul wrote to the brethren concerning WHO had the truth and was preaching it.   “Mr. Armstrong, it becomes clearer with every passing month what an enormous debt we owe you!” (He owes it to GOD.)  “When I reflect on the precious truths of God’s Word – the knowledge of what man’s future is, the coming Kingdom of God, the spirit in man, the history of the angels, the origin of human nature, what God is, and on and on, then I am truly grateful that God has called me into HIS Church – the only church on this earth that has the truth.  “But, Mr. Armstrong, this Church- has the truth only because” Christ gave it to us through you. You are Christ’s chosen and ordained apostle, and it is through you that I have learned and understood all these things.” (Quote from Herbert W. Armstrong’s article: “How Did You Come To Know The Truth”, Good News Magazine Oct. 1979) The argument from the Pope sounds familiar as God’s apostle and the Worldwide Church of God has received similar accusations from dissidents and enemies. This is similar to the accusation of Korah and his 250 ministers against Moses and Aaron, the servants of God. “And they gathered themselves together against Moses and against Aaron, and said unto them, Ye take too much upon you, seeing all the congregation are holy, every one of them, and the LORD is among them: wherefore then lift ye up yourselves above the congregation of the LORD?”(Numbers 16:3) His argument is “You think because you have the truth, and preach your “way of understanding” you have authority to govern the Church”. Notice the Pope is speaking against “the way” the apostles of Christ taught! THE WAY OF GOD IS A WAY OF LIFE! The unconverted Saul persecuted those who were walking in the “way” of God, until Jesus Christ struck him down on Damascus road and showed him what he was doing-persecuting Jesus Christ! What the Pope is saying is not far from Korah’s accusation! Notice, the Pope is saying that the Gnostic believes that “his understanding” is the basis for authority to govern the lives of others. And that is true of a Gnostic but not of God’s true Church. This is what is being mixed. The enemies of the Church accuse God’s apostle and God’s true Church of teaching “their way of understanding”, saying that there is “many ways” to Christ. Notice what Herbert W. Armstrong wrote: “God’s Word alone is truth “That is why I have said the experience I was painfully subjected to in this six-months’ intensive study was UNIQUE in human life and conduct. I know of no world religious leader who arrived at his teachings in such manner. Perhaps that is why GOD’S INSPIRED WORD alone – as I proved – is TRUTH. Only GOD is infallibly correct! “I was brought, by the spring of 1927, to a complete MIND-SWEEPING – my mind swept clean of previous assumptions and beliefs – surrendered to the WORD OF GOD, which by then I had proved TRUE, and the SUPREME AUTHORITY. “More, I had been brought to realize my own inadequacy and nothingness. I had been brought to a real repentance – CONQUERED by the GREAT MAJESTIC GOD – and with a solid rock-based FAITH in Jesus Christ. I was baptized, and the infilling of God’s Spirit opened my mind to the Joy UNSPEAKABLE of knowing God and Jesus Christ – of knowing TRUTH and the warmth of God’s divine LOVE! “What I once hated I now LOVED. I found the greatest and most absorbing joy of my life in continuing to dig out those gold nuggets of TRUTH from God’s Word.”…”Seeking an obedient Church I knew now that when I found the one and only true Church, I would find a Church obedient to God – keeping His commandments – having the testimony of Jesus Christ, which is the TRUTH of the Scriptures. “I had been much impressed by a description of the true Church, as it is to be found in our time just before the second coming of Christ. It is found in Revelation 12. It is the time when Satan is filled with wrath against God’s Church, “because he knoweth that he hath but a short time” (Revelation 12:12). Satan is making war with “the remnant of her seed.” The remnant means the very last generation in this age. The Church is definitely described. It is those “…which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ” (Revelation 12: 17). “My intensive study had revealed one thing plainly: “The commandments of God” mean “Sabbath keeping” to most traditional denominations. They say, “The commandments are done away!” They reject “the commandments of God.” “That automatically ruled out all churches observing Sunday. So far as I could learn, it reduced the search to three small groups – the Seventh-Day Adventists, the Seventh-Day Baptists, and a little, almost unheard-of church called the Church of God, which maintained a small publishing-house headquarters at Stanberry, Mo. So I examined Seventh-Day Adventist teachings – just as I did those of many other denominations. I obtained their magazines, their booklets and pamphlets, their large book of Bible readings or Bible “home instructor.” “The true Church is the one that lives by EVERY WORD of God – the words of the BIBLE!” (Quote from Herbert W. Armstrong, “HOW THE WORLDWIDE CHURCH OF GOD CAME INTO BEING”, Good News Magazine November 6, 1978)
Francis, on the other hand, believes that “in the church there legitimately coexist different ways of interpreting many aspects of doctrine and Christian life.” Our understanding and expression of doctrine “is not a closed system, devoid of the dynamic capacity to pose questions, doubts, inquiries.” He cites Pope John Paul II, who warned of the temptation on the part of those in the church who are more highly educated “to feel somehow superior to other members of the faithful.” Gnostics can think that because they know something, or are able to explain it in certain terms, that they are already saints, perfect and better than the “ignorant masses.”
Now, doesn’t this sound familiar? When we come into contact with people propagating “different doctrines”, “heresies”, trying to sway members of the Church(while claiming to be Church members themselves), we confront what they say with God’s Word and with quotes from God’s apostle(who has authority from Christ). They often will accuse us, when we show them how their “strange teaching” is in fact wrong and heresy, of “feeling superior” and “filled with self-righteousness”. All we did was direct them to the instructions and teachings of God’s Word and God’s true apostle Herbert W. Armstrong. We don’t believe we are “superior” in knowing a truth that someone else doesn’t have. The very reason we share the truths that God’s apostle taught, is to help the other person(claiming to be a member of the Church). So this false accusation does ring familiar.
While Gnostics take pride in their knowledge, Pelagians take pride in their personal efforts. Gnostics stress the intellect, while Pelagians stress the will.
Remember, one of the accusations against God’s apostle and God’s true Church, is that “they believe they only have the truth”, and God’s Church does. The Holy Spirit is only given to a relative few now. The rest of the world is blinded by Satan the Devil, unable to understand the spiritual knowledge of God. The few God has called today has been called to become teachers of “the way” of God in the World Tomorrow, after Christ has returned to establish the Government of God on this Earth. A thousand years after this establishing of the Government of God on this Earth, All who has ever lived will have their eyes opened to the TRUTH, and will be given a second chance to live the way of God. Those who seek their “own way”, contrary to scripture, contrary to God’s way, seek to accuse those who stay faithful and true to Christ and God’s Law, angry with them because they will not “compromise”.
Pelagians “ultimately trust only in their own powers and feel superior to others because they observe certain rules or remain intransigently faithful to a particular Catholic style,” reports Francis.
“Certain rules”? What is law? It is the “rules of conduct”. The laws of a basketball game are the “rules” of the game. Now, those who “observe certain rules”, or God’s law,  are added to the accusation.
While Pelagians speak of grace, it is often just an add-on to the all-powerful human will. “When some of them tell the weak that all things can be accomplished with God’s grace,” writes Francis, “deep down they tend to give the idea that all things are possible by the human will, as if it were something pure, perfect, all-powerful, to which grace is then added.”
Rather, “in this life human weaknesses are not healed completely and once for all by grace,” Francis explains. “Grace, precisely because it builds on nature, does not make us superhuman all at once.” Not acknowledging our limitations “prevents grace from working more effectively within us,” he writes. “Unless we can acknowledge our concrete and limited situation, we will not be able to see the real and possible steps that the Lord demands of us at every moment, once we are attracted and empowered by his gift.” Francis reminds us that “The Church has repeatedly taught that we are justified not by our own works or efforts, but by the grace of the Lord, who always takes the initiative.” We cannot buy God’s friendship with our works, “it can only be a gift born of his loving initiative.”
James 2:17-26 “Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone. Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works. Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble. But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.  Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.  Likewise also was not Rahab the harlot justified by works, when she had received the messengers, and had sent them out another way? For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.” What the Pope says is contrary to scripture.
This truth should affect the way we live. It invites us “to live in joyful gratitude for this completely unmerited gift” of his friendship. We can only celebrate this free gift if we realize that our earthly life and natural abilities are his gifts.
“This Truth” he speaks is contrary to scripture, and a “lie”. It does affect the way that they live. They believe that they are the friends of God, without obeying God. This is the Gnostic teaching of Simon Magus, the first Pope, of giving a “license to sin”. They believe the more this life gives you, God is giving you “His gifts”. So they take unto themselves, believing the more they “GET” & “RECEIVE” the more God loves them. This is the doctrine of the Nicolaitans, which was the belief that the more you “sinned” the greater God’s grace was in forgiving such sin. So their belief is, if you seek to GET more in this earthly life and receive more abilities, you receive God’s gifts, and God’s grace abounds greater in you.
Yet some Christians today seek justification through their own efforts. “The result is a self-centered and elitist complacency, bereft of true love,” writes Francis. “This finds expression in a variety of apparently unconnected ways of thinking and acting: an obsession with the law, an absorption with social and political advantages, a punctilious concern for the Church’s liturgy, doctrine and prestige, a vanity about the ability to manage practical matters, and an excessive concern with programs of self-help and personal fulfilment.”
“An obsession with the law”? You mean, submitting to God’s Law in every aspect of our lives, and being careful and diligent in not breaking that law- you know…the Christian walk? Remember what Tkach and others accused God’s Church of being! “Obsessed with the law”. “fundamentalism” etc. A  “punctilious concern for the Church’s liturgy, doctrine and prestige”??? What does “punctilious” mean? It means: “showing great attention to detail or correct behavior.” What does “Liturgy” mean? From Wikipedia- “Liturgy is the customary public worship performed by a religious group, according to its beliefs, customs and traditions. As a religious phenomenon, liturgy is a communal response to and participation in, the sacred through activity reflecting praise, thanksgiving, supplication or repentance. Ritualization may be associated with life events such as birth, coming of age, marriage, sex and death. It thus forms the basis for establishing a relationship with a divine agency, as well as with other participants in the liturgy. Methods of dress, preparation of food, application of cosmetics or other hygienic practices are all considered liturgical activities.” So according to the Pope, if someone pays great attention to Church doctrines they are “Pelagian”. If someone pays great attention to certain things, like on “makeup”, or proper dress, or length of hair,  they have a trait of “Pelagianism” the Pope says. Now, a Liturgy is essentially a ritualistic practice, used by and associated mainly with the Catholic Church. God’s true Church has had to deal with problems concerning proper dress, hair lengths of women and men, “make-up”, even smoking etc, and had to make official decisions on what is “proper” according to God and His Word. This argument from the Pope, strengthens those who opposed God’s apostle and God’s Church and their decision on these things, and is a false accusation against the Church of which the Catholic Church is in fact guilty of. Because if you argue what God’s Church teaches on these “doctrines & teachings”, then you’ll be accused of “paying greater attention to Church liturgy & doctrine & prestige(placing these teachings above other teachings)” and therefore a “Pelagian”, and therefore must be removed. I wonder who he is speaking against? Those who are staying faithful to God, Christ, His Truth which was preached by His apostle Herbert W. Armstrong.
Rather than spending their time and energy on these things, Christians should let themselves be led by the Spirit in the way of love. If the church does not follow the promptings of the Spirit, it “can become a museum piece or the possession of a select few,” says Francis. “This can occur when some groups of Christians give excessive importance to certain rules, customs or ways of acting. The Gospel then tends to be reduced and constricted, deprived of its simplicity, allure and savor.”
Don’t spend time and energy on these things says the Pope! Don’t HOLD FAST, let go, and LOVE LOVE LOVE! He talks about the Church being led and prompted by “the Spirit”. Which Spirit? We must discern the spirits! He says if you don’t allow yourself to be  SWAYED by this “spirit” he is speaking of, such teachings will be the possession of a select few, a museum piece to be looked at.(Remember, wwcg-archives.com is an archive of the publications of God’s true Church and God’s true apostle. “museum”? You go to a museum to LEARN of past teachings. Who is he really speaking about? “This can occur when some groups of Christians give excessive importance to certain rules, customs or ways of acting.”, Francis says. There is that “certain rules”, or God’s Law again! And that WAY of life the Bible talks so much about! It’s becoming clearer about whom he is talking about!
This form of Pelagianism explains why groups, movements and communities so often “begin with an intense life in the Spirit, only to end up fossilized or corrupt,” writes Francis. “Once we believe that everything depends on human effort as channeled by ecclesial rules and structures, we unconsciously complicate the Gospel and become enslaved to a blueprint that leaves few openings for the working of grace.”
Let’s put this in a more relatable way. The Worldwide Church of God was raised up, and look at how God was working through those who were led by God’s Holy Spirit! Look at the WORLDWIDE WORK that was done! AMAZING! Now, after Mr. Armstrong’s death, a different Church rose up among the membership of the Worldwide Church of God. They seized control of the WWC INC organization, and began installing NEW doctrines and teachings, contrary to God’s Word, heresies, and began building a NEW membership, kicking out and persecuting the true membership of the Worldwide Church of God. Soon, the recognizable work which showed so much “intense life in the Spirit”, became “corrupt”. This is the story against the Worldwide Church of God. These “splinter groups”, these COG churches are teaching their congregations the same thing. They teach “The Worldwide Church of God apostatized, left Christ, was destroyed!”  Sound familiar? It is the same thing Pope Francis is saying. Pope Francis says, “Once we believe that everything depends on human effort as channeled by ecclesial rules and structures, we unconsciously complicate the Gospel and become enslaved to a blueprint that leaves few openings for the working of grace.” So, if you or me consider that obeying God, keeping faithful and true to God and His truth as taught by His apostle and Church, is “everything”, we complicate the Gospel and become “enslaved to a blueprint that leave few openings”. You mean, if you don’t compromise you can’t be led astray or deceived!!! They are saying that if you don’t compromise with God’s Truth you are a slave, and they are “promising liberty” from such enslavement! The first time I heard about a “blueprint” concerning the Church, was from a minister of the UCG. He was teaching that God didn’t have “one blueprint” for His Government, but had several government structures He worked through. That is diabolical and demoniac and comes from Satan the great deceiver!
The way to avoid these wrong paths, says Francis, is by reminding ourselves of the primacy of the theological virtues, the center of which is charity. What truly counts, according to St. Paul, is “faith working through love” (Galatians 5:6). Or as Paul says elsewhere, “The one who loves another has fulfilled the law … for love is the fulfillment of the law” (Romans 13:8, 10).
Talking out of both sides of his mouth.
Francis reminds us how Jesus showed us the face of God “in every one of our brothers and sisters, especially the least, the most vulnerable, the defenseless and those in need.” Loving our Lord and our neighbor is what Christianity is all about, a point missed by Gnostics and Pelagians alike.
LOVE, LOVE, LOVE! If you LOVE your neighbor, you “permit” their sin, and so in order to LOVE those who speak contrary to God’s Word and contrary to the doctrine we have learned from Christ through His apostles, WE HAVE TO PERMIT, ALLOW these people to continue inside God’s Church with these contrary and demoniac teachings! That is what this Pope and others who have left God’s Church are crying out! God says man of himself cannot love His neighbor as God loves. In order to Love your neighbor as God loves, you must FIRST obey God and show love towards God through obedience to His Law! Then God gives His love through His Holy Spirit, and with that love in us, we are then able to pass that love onto our neighbor, and love our neighbor and brethren as God loves. His twisting of Jesus’ teaching when He blessed the children, is a perversion, a half-truth. Yes, if you don’t show love towards the weak, the defenseless, the widow, the orphan, the children etc, not clothing the naked, the starving, those within need, you are doing the same against Christ. But this is in relation to what he has been talking prior to this. If you keep God’s Law, and are concerned with Church doctrine, and such, are won’t allow compromise to God’s Truth, Pope Francis is saying you don’t love your brethren or neighbors! That is straight from the Devil, mind you! Now, this article ends with this “directive”. I say “directive” because it appears to be an order the Pope  telling His fellow Jesuits and Catholics what must be done. They must DO this, and they believe they do God a service in doing this. Notice:
Francis ends Chapter 2 with a prayer: “May the Lord set the Church free from these new forms of Gnosticism and Pelagianism that weigh her down and block her progress along the path to holiness!” He asks each of us to reflect and discern how these aberrations may be present in our lives.
THAT IS AGAINST GOD’S TRUE CHURCH! He is issuing out an order to “set the Church free from these NEW forms of Gnosticism and Pelagianism [He is redefining them]” He says such people are WEIGHING THE CATHOLIC CHURCH DOWN and BLOCKING HER PROGRESS! That shows God’s people have been doing a WONDERFUL JOB in staying FAITHFUL, and now the Pope is sending out an order to GET RID OF THEM! Since this directive, we personally have seen a greater initiative of attacks against this website and against us personally. Remember in Revelation 12. “And to the woman[The True Church of God who have been FAITHFUL] were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent. And the serpent [the DEVIL] cast out of his mouth water [armies] as a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood. Satan issued out an order, worked through the military armies under his control, to GET RID OF GOD’S TRUE CHURCH- to “set the church free” from such people whom they say are weighing the Catholic Church down and blocking their progress! Remember, as Mr. Armstrong taught, this coming UNITED STATES OF EUROPE will STOP THE PHILADELPHIAN WORK! Could this be the orders being sent out from the Pope to do just that? Notice God’s Promise!  It is SURE TO HAPPEN! Yes we may see this happen very shortly! ARE YOU READY BRETHREN? Below are quotes from Mr. Armstrong and the Worldwide Church of God on Gnosticism, and things being talked about above in the article about the Pope.
“Now in the actual history of the first two centuries of the professing church, we saw it was divided into many different sects, many denominations, in one division, the Gnostics alone, there were more than fifty divisions, fifty different sects. But now let’s look into the history of the true Church. Remember that the largest book of prophecy in the New Testament, the book of Revelation, the one great prophetic book in the New Testament pictures the church in the future and it shows TWO CHURCHES, not one. I’ve explained to you that the word church comes from the Greek word, since the New Testament was written in the Greek language, the Greek word ecclesia and it means a crowd, a group, an assembly of people, that’s all. There’s no sanctity in the word church. And so if you have a world church, of this world, that’s not the Church of God. Then there is the Church of God mentioned in the Bible. Now we find in the book of Revelation is a great world church pictured here, and it is not the Church of God at all. This is the FALSE church, the DECEIVING church, the FALLEN church, and this pictures what we saw beginning in the history that we’ve read to you, and I have read to you from various histories, various encyclopedias, but primarily from Gibbon’s Rome in the past several broadcasts.” -Quote from Herbert W. Armstrong, World Tomorrow Radio                                                                Program titled: “I Will Build My Church”(True Church 4)  
“THE CONCEPT OF GNOSTICISM Simon Magus was the first Gnostic teacher of Christian times. The religious philosophy of Gnosticism became common during this time. Gnostics, from the Greek word Gnosis, which means “to know,” had a religion based on an esoteric form of knowledge. Gnostic religions existed well before the time of Christ, but during the first century A.D., they adopted many Christian titles and blended them with their existing religion. They taught that matter was evil and spirit good and that salvation was attained through secret knowledge. It is possible that the Apostles Paul, Peter and John were inspired to write some of their letters in response to the influence of this false teaching and pagan heresy. The Apostle Paul warned about gnosticism. Summarize Colossians 2:18-23 on the lines below. ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Just how powerful these false groups were is demonstrated by what the Apostle John wrote in the 90s A.D. “I wrote unto the Church: but Diotrephes, who loveth to have the preeminence among them, receiveth us not … and not content therewith, neither doth he himself receive the brethren, and forbiddeth them that would, and casteth them out of the church” (III John 9-10). Some of these false teachers had become so influential that they put God’s true people out of the Church. Yet they called themselves “Christian” and claimed to be ministers of Jesus Christ. In actuality, they were Gnostics who unobtrusively came into the Church of God, and subtly introduced the elements of Simon’s teachings. At approximately the same time, Jude wrote, “For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ” (Jude 4). Jude also admonished the Church: “______ ye the words which were _____ before of the _______of our Lord _________ __________; How that they told you there should be _______ in the _______, who should _________ after their _______ ungodly ________”(verses 17-18). Paul wrote in A.D. 52: “Let no man deceive you by any means…. For the mystery of iniquity doth already work” (II Thessalonians 2:3,7). About a year later, Paul wrote the Galatians, “I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel” (Galatians 1:6). Teachers, claiming to be sent from Christ, preached a “gospel.” But it was not the same Gospel Christ brought. It was not the same Gospel Peter, Paul, James, John and Jude taught. It was a false gospel that used Christian names but was not the same message. It blended the Babylonian mystery religion, Gnostic philosophy and Christian-sounding names into a false religion. It gained so much influence that by the 50s A.D., Paul had to warn against it. By the 90s A.D., John and Jude spoke out against it. By the second century A.D., it had more adherents than the true faith had. For more information about the Gospel message that Christ brought, write for our free booklet What Is the True Gospel? “                                                                       -Quote from “Youth Bible Lesson, Level 9, Lesson 9” Published by the Worldwide Church of God  
  “Early writers often referred to Simon as “the father of the Gnostics” and Gnostic writings mention that in order to become “all things to all men” he claimed to be God the Father, in Samaria; God the Son, in Judea; and God the Holy Spirit among the Gentile peoples. Simon, it seemed, really believed in a “holy trinity.”   Perhaps the most damaging and far reaching of Simon’s new “Christian” doctrines was that the grace or free pardon of God gave a person the license to continue in sin.   The epistle of Jude speaks of “certain men” who “crept in unawares” and turned “the grace of our God into lasciviousness …” (Jude 4). Simon had been dead for some time when this was written, but Jude almost certainly had in mind Simon’s followers when he wrote this, who were attempting to introduce this doctrine into the true church.   “At the head of all the sects, which disturbed the peace of the church, stand the Gnostics, who claimed ability to restore to mankind the lost knowledge of the true and supreme God… even in the first century, in various places, men infected with the Gnostic leprosy began to erect societies distinct from the other Christians.”5   William Cave gives further details concerning the progress of this insidious attempt to subvert the true Church:   “The first ringleader of this heretical crew was Simon Magus, who not being able to attain his ends of the apostles, by getting a power to confer miraculous gifts, whereby he designed to greatly and enrich himself, resolved to be revenged of them, scattered the most poisonous tares among the good wheat they had sown, bringing in the most pernicious principles; and as the natural consequence of that patronizing the most debauched villainous practices; and this under a pretense of still being Christians.   “But besides this, Simon and his followers made the gate yet wider, maintaining a universal license to sin; that men were free to do whatever they had a mind to; that to press the observance of good works was a bondage inconsistent with the liberty of the gospel; that so men did but believe in him and his dear Helen.”6   Helen was Simon’s mistress, and it was said that his relationship with her was used by his followers as an example, which they followed in their own grossly immoral lifestyles.   Justin Martyr says of her that “A certain Helen, also, is of this class, who had before been a public prostitute in Tyre of Phoenicia, and at that time attached herself to Simon, and was called, the first idea that proceeded from him.”7   The second century writer Iranaeus adds that “they lived in all lust and filthiness, as indeed whoever will take the pains to peruse the account that is given of them, will find that they wallowed in the most horrible and unheard of bestialities.”   These obscene orgies of Simon and his followers soon attracted the attention of the Romans, who rarely took the trouble to distinguish between the true Christians and the false. Tacitus and other writers of the period relate that Christians brought to trial were often accused by the authorities of taking part in secret orgies.   Peter seems to have had this in mind when he wrote that “many will follow their impurities; on account of whom the way of truth will be reviled” (II Pet. 2:2).” -Quote from “Incredible History of God’s True Church                                                                                          by Ivor C. Fletcher(1984 Edition)  
“Fading Back Into Normalcy Under such circumstances something was bound to give. As the early apostles passed from the scene, the visible church began to accommodate itself to many of the Hellenistic philosophies and doctrines then in vogue. Some felt such a maneuver was essential for the future survival of Christianity. According to Arnold Toynbee: “Even Christianity might have found it hard to make headway in the Hellenic world if it had not, like its competitors, presented itself in Hellenic dress” (Hellenism, p. 277). Toynbee went on to say: “The Christian propagandists of the second century sought to commend Christianity to the educated minority of the Hellenic public by presenting it as the crown of all known philosophic systems. And this minority could not be won for Christianity without translating Christian beliefs into Hellenic philosophy’s technical terminology…” (ibid., p. 228). Edwin Hatch, author of The Influence of Greek Ideas on Christianity, also described this process: “It was impossible for Greeks, educated as they were with an education which penetrated their whole nature, to receive or to retain Christianity in its primitive simplicity” (p. 49). So the process of Hellenization began in earnest. Visible Christianity took on a completely different form as Greek elements flooded into the visible church. James Shiel explains what happened: “On their [the Greek’s] conversion many of them retained current preoccupation with the religious concept of ‘salvation,’ mingled with a host of similar concepts from the Oriental mystery religions. Salvation was to be achieved by perfect knowledge (gnosis). They insisted that there were hidden truths in the Scriptures which only the true Gnostic could discern” (op. cit., p. 51). The heavy influence of Greek philosophical concepts on Christianity was also apparent from the writings of the post-apostolic fathers. Origen, for instance, even urged that Hellenistic philosophy be used as a basic primer for Christianity: “I am therefore very desirous that you should accept such parts even of Greek philosophy as may serve for the ordinary elementary instruction of our schools, and be a kind of preparation for Christianity” (Philocalia of Origen, p. 57). Clement of Alexandria echoed these sentiments: “The philosophy of the Greeks, partial and particular though it is, contains the basic elements of that genuine and perfect knowledge which is higher than human, which is engaged upon purely intellectual objects, even upon those spiritual objects which eye has not seen…. until they were made plain to us Christians by our Great Teacher…” (Shiel, op. cit., p. 3). Compromise and Defeat Visible Christianity was well on the way to becoming just another version of a modern, updated Oriental mystery religion. Elaborate ceremonies were instituted, an intellectual priestly caste began to assert itself, and esoteric doctrines were kept back from the multitudes. Many of the major tenets of competing pagan religions readily found a safe haven within the walls of a changing Christianity. Pagan divinities were transformed into Christian saints, martyrs and angels. The cult of the Oriental mother goddess was revitalized in the veneration of the Virgin Mary. And pagan temples were often transformed into “Christian” houses of worship. Hellenistic dualism centered around the concept of an immortal soul; and an evil, corrupt material creation loomed large in post-apostolic thinking. Augustine and Thomas Aquinas also drew deeply from these same philosophical wells. Augustine was probably the staunchest advocate of Greek otherworldly concepts since the Stoics. Writing in The City of God, he was quick to eulogize ascetic ideals: “For that vision of God is the beauty of a vision so great and is so infinitely desirable that Plotinus does not hesitate to say that he who enjoys all other blessings in abundance and has not this is supremely miserable” (book X, chapter 16). Aquinas, for instance, took a dim view of earthly pleasure. In his monumental Summa Theologica, he wrote: “The religious state requires the removal of whatever hinders man from devoting himself entirely to God’s service. Now the use of sexual union hinders the mind from giving itself wholly to the service of God” (p. 655). He continued: “First, as regards the practice of perfection, a man is required to remove from himself whatever may hinder his affections from tending wholly to God… Such hindrances are…. First, the attachment to external goods, which is removed by a vow of poverty; secondly, the concupiscence of sensible pleasures, chief among which are sexual pleasures, and these are removed by the vow of continence…” (p. 659).” -Quote from “The White Horse- False Religion”                                                                                         Published by the Worldwide Church of God  
“Eusebius claims they rejected the virgin birth and pre-existence of Christ, and the writings of Paul. But this was not true of all. The next age of God’s True Church-revived in the place where migrating Ebionites disappear – accepted these truths! Their very distinguishing name became Paulician! It was the elaborate theology of Catholicism and Gnosticism which most “Ebionites” rejected! The interminable arguments whether God is one Person or three-whether Jesus Christ was God or man (He was both-God in the Flesh)! And a false version of “Pauline” theology which claims the Law was abolished! (Using Paul’s name to put over false doctrine began early – II Thes. 2:2.) A rigid splinter group, also called Ebionite, was indeed antagonistic to Paul. It was composed of carnal-minded Jews who could plainly perceive Jesus was no ordinary man. But they could never forgive Paul for having put Gentiles on the level of Jews by offering them salvation. Irenaeus (about A. D. 180,in the area of modern France) wrote they used only the Gospel of Matthew. A third group labeled “Ebionites” had accepted some Gnostic doctrines. As the second century ended a considerable number had exchanged the simple creed of Jesus Christ for a strange blend of Christianity and Essenism. Some of these became Elchasaites, so called after their leader, a false prophet led astray by demon visions. About A. D. 220. Alciabides propagated their false doctrine at Rome. Quite possibly this was the real origin of the “pseudo-Clementine” Homilies (composed about 170 A.D.) and Recognitions – (written later, but based on the former) -whose perverted ramblings betray knowledge that Simon Magus, not Simon Peter, founded a church at Rome! All these were carnal-minded sects labeled by the same name in church history as God’s church. In every age the Church has its unconverted “members.” But there were a few faithful, who really constituted the Church. “                                                         -Quote from “Ambassador Bible Correspondence Course (58 Lesson version) Lesson 49”
“That VISIBLE organization calling itself “Christian” and ruling over the nations during the Middle Ages was not God’s Church. It was the church of Satan.   The True Church continued all those years, a tiny “little flock,” unnoticed by the world, almost unknown to later historians. It was composed of the few who were led by God’s Spirit (Rom. 8:14). Now understand, in this lesson, HOW God’s Church survived the Middle Ages.   1. Does the sure word of prophecy tell us some among — and pretending to be part of — God’s people would depart from the faith and accept doctrines taught by demons? I Tim. 4:1.   COMMENT: This is a prophecy for “the latter times” — not of Paul’s own day when the original apostacy occurred. In era after era of God’s Church, it is a repeated fact that after a few generations the local congregations are no longer generally composed of truly converted brethren, but of unconverted children and halfhearted believers of whom many go astray into error.   Such were those among the Paulicians in the eighth century who began to accept demon-inspired visions they called “the new prophecy.” Some were also in touch with Gnostic sects.   Why were such heretical sects found associated with (and often confused with) God’s people? Because God’s Church can only exist where there is a significant measure of religious freedom, including freedom for all kinds of heresy to exist also. For example, today, God’s Church is mainly in countries where no state religion is in absolute control.   Thus the Paulicians of the Pergamos Era of the True Church, and their Slavic-speaking brethren called Bogomils, included, at a later time, several groups with a medley of doctrine. All these false opinions migrated where religious freedom was allowed. And there, too, God’s Church found freedom to preach. This spirit of religious freedom spread into western Europe, where those who fell away from the truth became known as Cathars.   2. Why does God allow such heresies to tempt the weak of His people? I Cor. 11:19.   3. Do those who teach the doctrines of demons really know better — as a result of their association with God’s faithful? I Tim. 4:2.   4. What are the demon doctrines Paul mentions? I Tim. 4:3.   COMMENT: Cathar “PERFECTS” did not marry though their “HEARERS” did. The result, of course, was rampant fornication (I Cor. 6:18; 7:2). Neither would they eat meat, milk or eggs. In our day OTHER, and false, churches teach these same demon-inspired doctrines. “   -Quote from “Ambassador Bible Correspondence Course                                                                                      (58 Lesson Version) Lesson 51″  
True Christians Forced Out   Although numerous deceivers, called Gnostics, left the Church, drawing away disciples after them, there was an even more dangerous apostasy which infiltrated the true Church.   In instructing the Evangelist Timothy, the apostle to the Gentiles instructed him to “reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts” — the congregations wanting to do what they please — “shall they heap to themselves teachers” — elect ministers who will preach what they want to hear — “…and they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables” (II Timothy 4:2-4).   This was in the days of the apostles and evangelists. MANY who fellowshipped in the local congregations of the early Church, after about two generations, did not endure sound doctrine because they had not repented and received the Holy Spirit. They elected teachers who, for the sake of money, pleased their wishes by preaching fables — the enticing fables of mysticism and sun-worship that were engulfing the Roman Empire. The letters of Paul were twisted by them to give another meaning than intended (II Peter 3:15-16).   But instead of leaving the local congregations and forming their own sects, as some Gentiles did at first, the false preachers remained within the congregations and soon began to expel the true Christians.   In the letter of the Apostle John to Gaius, we read: “I wrote unto the church: but Diotrephes, who loveth to have the preeminence among them, receiveth us not. Wherefore, if I come, I will remember his deeds which he doeth, prating against us with malicious words: and not content therewith, neither doth he himself receive the brethren, and forbiddeth them that would, AND CASTETH THEM OUT OF THE CHURCH” (III John 9 and 10).   The true Christians, who alone comprised the true Church, were being put out of the visible, organized congregations. They were the SCATTERED ones of whom John said: “Therefore the world knoweth us not” (I John 3:1). In the Western Roman Empire, where Paul died, the state of Christianity was even more advanced along the paths of error. The name Christian was being borne away by leaders who crept into the fellowship of the Church of God and who, in the name of Christ, deceived the MANY into following their false teachings. “ -Quote from “WHY SO MANY DENOMINATIONS?                                                                       by Herman Hoeh, Good News Magazine May 1985    
Who Taught Celibacy?  If early Christians were mainly married folk, where did the tradition of “Christian” celibacy come from? Who regarded sex as evil and marriage as merely the lesser of two sex evils? Scholars admit that the Judeo-Christian ethic of the Bible is a “naturalistic” mode of right sexual expression WITHIN MARRIAGE. This contrasts to pagan “dualism,” the belief that an evil body is inhabited by a righteous immortal soul, and that all works of the body (including sex) are to be rejected by the “soul.”  The Gnostics of Greece borrowed this concept of dualism from Egypt. The Gnostics had various conflicting beliefs about marriage, all negative. Some indulged in extramarital sex to the extreme, believing that this made marriage unnecessary. Others abstained from all forms of sex.  The Essenes of Qumram segregated men and women strictly, allowing no physical contact. Some mistakenly believe this sect was the ancestor of modern Christianity. Another philosophical sect of the first century housed men and women in a commune together, but they kept “hands off” to devote themselves totally to philosophy, unencumbered by “baser carnal drives” (Philo of Alexander, On the Contemplative Life).  The church fathers (few of whom were physical fathers!) were noted for their tormented sex lives. The doctrine of celibacy was actually an outcome of their personal repression. Origen (c. 220 A.D.) had severe hang-ups about sex, extreme guilt pangs, and he eventually castrated himself to avoid temptation — or perhaps to avoid fatherhood. Jerome (c. 400) led a monastic life, yet always stayed around women — whom he never touched apparently. He had wildly erotic dreams, the details of which he related to his women, glorying in how he had been “delivered.” Augustine of Hippo (c. 400) lived with a mistress early in life, later had extreme guilt pangs, and eventually heavily influenced church ideas on celibacy. Later doctrinaires, such as Thomas Aquinas, basically repeated these earlier church fathers in matters of sexual morality.  Amazingly enough, many of the Protestant “reformers” continued to teach the dualistic approach to sex and marriage, even though they allowed their ministers and laity to marry. Sexual intercourse was still considered at least partially “evil,” even within marriage.  But Christ and His Apostles NEVER taught celibacy, nor did they denigrate marriage. Enforced celibacy was a “doctrine of demons” to these apostles, and in God’s eyes it remains so. Nevertheless there are sometimes physical, psychological, environmental, and even religious reasons for postponing or refraining from marriage. Jesus referred to “eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven’s sake” in Matthew 19:12.  Some few have the need AND the ability to abstain from marriage, but Paul added, “It is better to marry than to burn” with desire (I Cor. 7:9). In most cases, however, stubborn, purposeful denial of a pure, clean first marriage of a compatible couple who love each other, solely based on a “religious” belief in celibacy is a doctrine promulgated by a god who cannot marry, a sexless spirit named SATAN the devil.  Again, sex in marriage is NOT a sin. It is the wrong use of sex that is a sin. And to get married is right and good in the sight of God. “Whoso findeth a wife findeth a good thing, and obtaineth favour of the Lord” (Prov. 18:22). “… And a prudent wife is from the Lord” (Prov. 19:14).” -Quote from “Is Sex Sin” booklet, published by the Worldwide Church of God  
In such a world is it any wonder that the great minds doubt whether there is any real Higher Power working out His intelligent PURPOSE? Is it any wonder that some dim-brains gave the world a fresh shock with the ridiculous slogan “God is dead!” To state that God is dead is to confess there really was a God—and if God was, God still is—for unless He is the Eternal—the Ever-living—He never was GOD!   In the second and third centuries we had gnosticism—meaning “we know.” Today most educators, scientists and great minds are AGNOSTIC, meaning “we don’t know—we are IGNORANT”! And this IGNORANCE they glorify in the guise of “KNOWLEDGE”!   As a BASIS for knowledge—as a FOUNDATION for education, we start with two alternatives. Right here is the CHOICE between fact and fancy; between true knowledge and ignorance; between TRUTH and error. Is there a Higher Power with design working out intelligent PURPOSE, or are we mere accidents of the blind, unintelligent, purposeless force of nature, descended from a single-celled amoeba sparked to life by “spontaneous generation,” “electrochemical action,” or other unknown accidental process?   The only truly scientific method is to PROVE a proposition before accepting it as scientific FACT. But has either science or education PROVED the evolutionary theory? Emphatically they have not! By its very nature it is a theory not subject to proof. Has either science or education PROVED the nonexistence of a personal Supreme God, of supreme intelligence, wisdom, and POWER to create? Emphatically they have not! WHY, then, do so many great minds who profess knowledge and wisdom doubt or deny God’s existence? Simply because of something inherent in human nature—something of which they are ignorant—a spirit of vanity, coupled with hostility and rebellion against their Maker and His authority!   Is it, after all, rational or intellectual to willfully assume fables, unproved and unprovable, to be fact, while ridiculing provable truth, branding it folklore?   But what of the other two basic ALTERNATIVES as one’s approach to knowledge?   There is a Higher Power! And at Ambassador College this is not carelessly assumed, but definitely, rationally, scientifically PROVED! And there is PURPOSE! Humanity was put here for a PURPOSE of such transcendent magnitude that even the great minds, in their carnality, cannot grasp it! And there is A WAY to peace between individuals, groups and nations, but tragically none of this world’s leaders were taught it! There is A WAY to happiness and abundant well-being, but modern education does not teach it.   So it all boils down to this crucial point: There are the two alternatives as a starting point—a BASIS—a FOUNDATION for knowledge. This world and its education have adopted the fictional, false foundation. And this erroneous foundation is the concept which becomes its approach to knowledge. It got off on a false start. Hence it is axiomatic that this world and its leaders are not being taught the true values, but pursue the false. The world is left without knowledge of life’s PURPOSE and meaning and is devoid of right goals, in utter ignorance of THE WAY to every desired blessing!   What an indictment against a complicated, highly organized, monumental system of education that has become DECADENT!   This gigantic system is ready to topple! It will soon fall, along with the civilization it has spawned! But a better day is soon coming! The happy is soon to dawn! It will be a world of PEACE, of PLENTY, of HAPPINESS. “ -Quote from Herbert W. Armstrong, “FOUNDATIONAL POLICY                                            RESTORED TO AMBASSADOR COLLEGE, Plain Truth Magazine                                            (September 1978 Issue)   GOD SPEED THE DAY WHEN IT WILL BE FINALLY SAID: BABYLON IS FALLEN, IS FALLEN! The first Pope, was Simon Magus, who was a Gnostic! Today, Satan through the Pope redefines a Gnostic and Pelagian to mean God’s people and accuses God’s people of being something they are not! The successor to that man, is Pope Francis. Is it any wonder why the redefinition? And while Satan is accusing God’s true Church(as he always has done), and is stirring up a deceived mankind through RELIGION, those of God’s Church rejoice in its sufferings with Christ, and have FAITH that Christ will fulfill His promises which is written in the Holy Bible. IT IS SURER THAN SURE! We shall see the WORLD TOMORROW!]]>