People of The Living God

Psalms 23

 

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August/September 2011



 

STANDARDS

Randall Walton

        Earthlings have been longing for world peace since their earliest days, but they desire said peace on their own terms, according to their own views, and in a manner which will be beneficial to themselves!

        The drive for peace is motivated by selfish ambitions, that is, man wants peace which will not alter nor upset his own way of life, but will augment his already bloated and self-centered existence.  This condition exists, not only among people of the world, but seems to be characteristic of mankind in general.  Neither is it limited to that segment of Christianity commonly called the laity, but this affliction runs rampant in the ranks of the clergy.

        Hence, we witness a clique of personnel who are dubiously dubbed ministers who live several degrees above those to whom they “minister.”  (The word minister used to mean to serve, or to be an attendant, or to wait upon others.  We aren’t sure what it means anymore.)

        It is not unusual for such ministers to drive expensive automobiles, live in luxurious homes, and wear the latest style of tailor-made suits.  It is somewhat of a status symbol, or an evidence of their success in their chosen profession, as if God Himself approves, condones and blesses them above their clientele.

        Yet, Jesus gave us fair warning of this condition in His Sermon On The Mount.  “Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves” (Matt. 7:15).  Too often we think of ravening as ferocious or terrifying, but Strong’s Concordance defines this word as extortion!  It is the same as rapacious, or being greedy, grasping, predatory, using any means whatever to extract money from people.

        All sorts of gimmicks and questionable tactics are employed by these so-called ministers of the gospel in order that they may maintain their lop-sided influence.  We have even read of efforts by some to have people donate their properties to them now, with the written guarantee that such properties would revert to the original owners in the millennium!

        The methods used to extort are too numerous and obnoxious to list here, but Jesus finished His warning with this sound advice: “By their fruits shall ye know them.”  And fruits are not measured by the number of “converts” a minister lays claim to, but rather by his own personal life and spiritual conduct (John 15:1-8; Gal. 5:22,23).

        And the same measure applies to all who would be followers of Jesus Christ.  It appears that as standards in general are making a speedy decline, the Lord is calling for a renewed diligence, an escalation of values, qualities and of measuring up to His requirements and standards.  Paul declared that God sent Jesus to condemn sin in the flesh that the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us (Rom. 8:3,4).  This means that those righteous principles set forth in His law must be adhered to, obeyed, and fulfilled.

        In other words, God’s desire is for His people (the church) to rise above sin, to live above sin, to become sinless!  Peter stated it very succinctly with his words that Jesus was our example, that we should follow His steps, and He did not sin (I Peter 2:21-23)!  Now, if it is not possible for us to attain such a state as this, then Jesus was not, is not, our example.  But He is our example, and He is moving among His people with the object in view to rid them of every taint of sin and corruption and cause them to be conformed to His own image and likeness.

        Before He returns in the clouds with all His holy angels, the church will have forsaken carnality, the yoke of the world and will walk in all the ways of the Lord (Eph. 5:25-27).

        “For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?” (I Peter 4:17)  We can expect some very drastic and dramatic measures to be used by the Lord in the “purging of his floor” (Matt. 3:12).  He will overturn the tables of merchandise, drive out the moneychangers, expose sin, reveal the hypocrite, and cleanse the hearts of His own people, for He will restore the glory which has been lost.

        These are momentous times in which we live.  It is high time that we take seriously Paul’s admonition in Romans 12:1,2: “I beseech you therefore by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.  And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable and perfect will of God.”

 

 

WHAT PRICE COMPROMISE?

George Scullin

        Few people that have found true repentance and a walk with God will deliberately turn their backs on God and rush into sin realizing the consequences.  This has been proven again and again in the scriptures and has been recorded there for our benefit.  From Eden onward we find examples of the subtleness of sin and its penalties.

        Eve did not just decide that she would go and eat some of the fruit from that tree.  She knew the law of God and she knew the penalty for disobedience.  She was not in ignorance as to the will of God.  First, by the processes of the mind, her conscience had to be soothed so that she would feel justified in eating the fruit.  This was accomplished by the power of suggestion when the serpent declared that they would not really die but would be like gods, knowing good and evil.  This sounded reasonable and was appealing, so it was easy for her to recognize the food value of the fruit as well as the desirability of the wisdom it would bring.  As she thought on these things she became deaf to the voice of conscience and decided it was a worthy cause.  She ate.  She gave her husband some and he ate.  Their understanding was enlarged and they were as gods, knowing good and evil.  What a blessing from the Lord this was.  How wonderful that God had made this great thing available to them.  Why, they even realized they were naked and needed to be clothed.  BUT THEY DIED ANYWAY.

        Cain was not a lazy good-for-nothing.  Cain was very industrious.  He worked harder than his brother Abel.  Abel could spend much of his time loafing around following the sheep while they grew fat on the rich pasture.  God had said they would earn their bread by the sweat of the brow and Cain knew what that meant.  It irritated him that Abel would not help him till the ground.  The smell of the sheep was distasteful to him and the odors bothered him.  He loved the scent of the good earth as he cultivated his vegetables.  He had such a nice garden and he had worked so hard at it.  Why not make an offering to the Lord of his very best vegetables?  God knew how hard he had worked at it, and in obedience to the command of the Lord too (he had been soaked in sweat at times), so surely the Lord would be pleased with such a fine offering.  Of course, God had shown their parents how to make sacrifice when they received their first coats but this would be even better.  There would be no slaughtering of a little lamb, no blood getting all over him, it would be so clean.  Let Abel offer a lamb, he would offer his finest vegetables.  So Cain reasoned away righteousness.  So Cain sinned.  So Cain perished.

        The history of the kingdom of Israel and the kingdom of Judah is one of compromise in various degrees.  When the nation was strong for God and intent on doing His will they were blessed.  When they were persuaded to compromise, they suffered to the degree that they compromised.  They always paid for their transgressions.  This usually was a result of the inclinations of the king they had at the time.  This seemed to follow through in all of Israel’s history.  The leader (judge, priest, king or governor) almost always could persuade the people toward or away from God by the manner in which he ministered.  But that was the way they wanted things to be done.  They did not want God to be their king.  Israel wanted a man to rule over them.  So they perished as a nation.

        Solomon, and most of the rulers after him, were great compromisers.  Solomon loved his wives very much.  He wanted them to be happy, so he permitted them to set up places of worship for their favorite idols.  When they insisted in his accompanying them to their religious rites, he did not want to hurt their feelings; and then, too, he wanted them to come to the worship at the temple, so he went along just to humor them.  Then, of course, being the king and a great dignitary he could not easily refuse to take part in the ceremonies without being rude; so he complied.  Like the politicians and preachers of our day he had to do many things in order to stay in the good graces of the people.  And he did.  But you may not see him in the kingdom of God.  He is not listed with the faithful in Hebrews 11.

        Jeroboam had a serious problem.  God had chosen him to be king over the northern tribes, but the temple and the ark of God were at Jerusalem.  He was afraid that if the people went to Jerusalem to worship that they would fall under the influence of Rehoboam, king of Judah, and he, Jeroboam, would lose control.  So he set up a pseudo-worship at Dan and at Bethel.  This consisted of two golden calves that would represent God instead of the ark, which was at Jerusalem.  Most of the people followed his lead.  A few scattered lovers of God moved to Judah where they might serve God according to the law.  The rest never recovered; for their history is one of abomination and sin.  God destroyed them.

        Millions of people in this generation have knelt before God and sincerely promised God that if He would forgive their sins, they would serve Him.  They would live for Him.  God graciously heard their pleas and forgave them.  But they were soon persuaded that they needed to adjust their plans.  There were things in the world that they needed to make life easier and there were conveniences and comforts that were so nice.  Then they needed two cars and they should have a nice boat for family pleasure time; and of course, they should have a substantial bank account for rainy day needs, and their poor children should have nice toys, a T.V., etc.  They had to put in extra hours to earn money for these things.  This cut into their time for the Lord but it couldn’t be helped.  God would understand, and anyway, God was not a tyrant.  The result?  They slowly petrified into pew-warmers.  They died spiritually.

        IF ANY MAN love the world or the THINGS OF THE WORLD---THE LOVE OF THE FATHER IS NOT IN HIM, (I John 2:15).

        This compromise is a surrender of spiritual values for worldly values.  Jesus said in Mt. 6:24 “Ye cannot serve God and mammon.”  The attempt to do so will end in death.  SPIRITUAL DEATH – ETERNAL DEATH.

 

 

SAY NO TO LEGALIZING DRUGS

Haven Bradford Gow

        Writing in the July 4-11, 2011 America, James Richard, a social critic in Boston, MA, said: “Massachusetts lowered the drinking age to 18 in the 1970s.  It was a disaster.  Instead of 18 to 21 year olders drinking moderately, they drank more and bought it for those under 18…Night club owners saw a decrease in revenue because teens would buy less and just hang out…And the amount of damage by teens ran the costs up.  Things were so bad the state ran a referendum and voters voted 5 to 1 to return the drinking age to 21.”

        If Massachusetts experienced such negative social consequences after lowering the drinking age to 18, what do you think would happen if drugs like marijuana and cocaine were legalized and more young people were able to gain access to such drugs?  According to a report from the Family Research Council, Washington, D.C., “California decriminalized marijuana in 1976 and, within the first six months, arrests for driving under the influence rose 46 percent for adults and 71.4 percent for juveniles.  Decriminalizing marijuana in Alaska and Oregon in the 1970s resulted in doubling the use.”

        Moreover, drug use is intimately related with criminal activity; the US Justice Department reports that the overwhelming majority of inmates — 77.4 percent male and 83.6 percent female — were under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time their crimes were committed.  Another study found that 25 percent of young people who confessed to cocaine and/or heroin use also admitted to committing 40 percent of all crimes.

        Also, legalizing drugs would have a devastating health cost; indeed, a study by the Institute for Health Policy at Brandeis University found that the societal cost of substance abuse is more than $238 billion, of which $67 billion is for illicit drugs; according to this study, “substance abuse — the problematic use of alcohol, illicit drugs and tobacco — places an enormous burden on American society as a whole.”

        Supporters of drug legalization also argue that legalization has worked in other countries, and so the United States should emulate the drug policies of these other nations; however, according to the Family Research Council study, “History provides evidence that legalization of drugs in foreign countries has not been successful.  For example, opium was legalized in China earlier this century.  That decision resulted in 90 million addicts and it took a half–century to repair the damage.”  The Netherlands also has legalized drugs; but government officials in that country blame the significant rise in crime on liberalized drug policies.

        Man is by nature a social animal; we need other human beings, and they need us.  From these elementary truths, we can understand that we possess social and moral obligations that sometimes require us to subordinate our private, selfish interests and pursuits for the sake of the common good.  By keeping harmful drugs like cocaine and marijuana illegal, the state is asking us to sacrifice a little bit of freedom for the moral well–being of society.  This is a valuable and much needed lesson for people to learn.

 

 

THE LORD’S DAY TRUTH

Randall Walton

        There is much confusion in the ranks of Christendom today concerning the Lord’s Day.  (Note: The Lord’s Day and the Day of the Lord are not the same in the context of Scripture.  The day of the Lord is a period of time which precedes the second advent of Jesus and includes the day of judgment with the accompanying destruction of this earth, II Peter 3:10-12.)

        The term, “The Lord’s Day,” is mentioned but once in the Holy Book, and that is in Revelation 1:10 where John states that “I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day.”  It has become accepted as fact among many people that John was referring to the first day of the week, Sunday, in the passage, but we are urged to ask why?  What precedent, what proof, or even suggestion, exist anywhere which could possibly be construed to suppose that John was stating he was in the Spirit on Sunday, or upon the first day of the week?

        Jesus affirmed that He was Lord of the Sabbath: we, therefore, are compelled to believe that the Sabbath, the seventh day of the week, is the Lord’s Day, and Sunday is not (Mark 2:27,28)!

        The doctrine of the Sabbath has become a bone of contention among Christians to the point that people separate themselves from one another with one group hurling accusations of “legalists,” “under bondage to the law,” and the other side denouncing the first group as anti-Christ and “reprobate from the truth.”

        Our stand on this issue is that the Seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord, and that as one of the Ten Commandments, it is still in force today along with the other nine.  We understand that there is great confusion concerning this doctrine and that the majority of professing Christians are Sunday keepers (and some observe no day at all), but we hold no animosity toward those who disagree with us.

        We believe that God will lead into truth those who are willing to follow, and once a person has been shown the truth of the Sabbath (or any other truth), he is then obligated to walk in that truth.  Refusal to do so is rebellion against God, and that person will reap the rewards of rebellion.  It remains for us to walk in the light and to faithfully declare the truth without fear, favor or compromise, but in love and compassion.

        In order to make clear our stand on this matter we will submit some of the more popular arguments which are raised in defense of Sunday observance and follow these with our rebuttal.

SUNDAY IS THE LORD’S DAY BECAUSE:

A. Jesus rose from the tomb on Sunday, the first day of the week.

Answer:  First, a thorough study of the four gospels will reveal that Jesus did not rise from the grave on the first day of the week.  While each of the accounts differs somewhat, they can be paralleled (placed side by side) and the result will show that Matthew recorded the very earliest absence of Jesus from the tomb.  Matthew 28:1,2 says, “In the end of the Sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, came Mary Magdalene” (KJV).  There was a great earthquake and an angel appeared and told the women that Jesus had already risen.  Remember, Sabbath ended at sundown and this was “in the end of the Sabbath,” which in our terminology would be late Saturday afternoon.

        Berry’s Greek-English Interlinear states it this way, “Now late on Sabbath, as it was getting dark toward the first of the week.”

        And the American Revised Standard Edition, 1900, says, “Now late on the Sabbath day, as it began to dawn toward the first of the week.”  From these sources we can only conclude that the popular notion of Jesus rising at the break of day on Sunday morning is incorrect, and the whole concept of honoring Sunday as a blessed day is erroneous.

        However, even if Jesus had risen on Sunday, what would this have to do with calling Sunday the Lord’s day or the Sabbath?  Where in Scripture can we find that anyone ever revered Sunday or spoke of Sunday as being a holy day?

        By the same logic, while we believe that Jesus rose “late on the Sabbath,” this does not enhance the Sabbath in any way; for the Sabbath was blessed, sanctified, and hallowed at creation and needed no further sanctification nor glory (Gen. 2:2,3).

B.  The law was abolished and nailed to the cross.

Answer:  Ephesians 2:15 and Colossians 2:14 speak of the “law of commandments contained in ordinances” and the “hand-writing of ordinances” being abolished and nailed to the cross.  But we need to understand what this code of ordinances consisted of.

        The Ten Commandments were never a part of the handwriting of ordinances.  They were and are eternal moral principles based upon the character and nature of the Almighty and were written upon two tables of stone (permanency) by the Lord Himself, and they were placed inside the Ark of the Covenant to be preserved for God’s people.

        The ordinances were a separate and distinct set of rules which became known as the “law of Moses” in which were included the ceremonial laws regarding the Levitical Priesthood and the tabernacle, clean and unclean meats, sacrifices, circumcision, washings, and various civil ordinances.

        The entire code was done away when Jesus went to the Cross, but a new code (or covenant) was instituted in which God placed His laws within the hearts and minds of His people (Heb. 8,9,10)!  This new covenant includes the Ten Commandments, all of them, including the fourth.

        Take note of the testimony of men of God in the New Testament concerning the law:

        “The doers of the law shall be justified” (Rom. 2:13).

        “Do we then make void the law through faith?  God forbid, yea, we establish the law” (Rom. 3:31).

        “The law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good” (Rom. 7:12).

        “For we know that the law is spiritual” (Rom. 7:14).

        “That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us” (Rom. 8:4).

        “Circumcision is nothing, and uncircumcision is nothing, but the keeping of the commandments of God” (I Cor. 7:19).

        “Hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments” (I John 2:3).

        “the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God” (Rev. 12:17).

        “Sin is transgression of the law” (I John 3:4).

        If there is no law for people to obey, then, of course, there is no sin, and if there is no sin, all are saved!  But does this make sense?  Of course not.  When anyone breaks God’s law, he is under the law, its penalty, its judgment, and he must find restitution with God by confession, repentance, and adhering to His law.

C.  The early church had their religious meetings on the first day of the week.

Answer:  False.  There is not one meeting recorded in the New Testament where the saints had gathered together for worship during the day on the first day of the week.

        We will list every first day gathering for all to see.

        1.  “For fear of the Jews” (John 20:19).  This was certainly not an assembly for worship.

        2.  “The disciples came together to break bread” (Acts 20:7-11).  Take special notice that this was not a day time meeting.  This assembly took place on what we call Saturday night, for the Sabbath ended at sundown, and the first day began at that same time.  Paul preached until midnight and was ready to leave the following morning (which he did at the break of day, verse 11).  This certainly sets no precedent for Sunday day time meetings nor Sunday observance.  It is most likely that this was an extension of the Sabbath service.

        3.  “Let every one of you lay by him in store” (I Cor. 16:1-3).  This is anything but a religious service.  If there was a gathering of people at all, it was a business meeting to supply the needs of the saints in Jerusalem.  The people were told to attend to this “collection for the saints” on Sunday; they would never consider doing this sort of labor on the Sabbath.

        And that’s all there is about Sunday gatherings!  Some theologians have tried to place Pentecost on Sunday, but to no avail.  Pentecost was the fiftieth day after the day following Passover.  Passover that year fell on Wednesday, the day Jesus was crucified.  Counting 50 days from Thursday (the day after Passover) places Pentecost on Friday!

        Does that sanctify Friday?  Is it to be respected as a special day because Pentecost fell on that day?  No.  Pentecost, like Passover, occurred on different days of the week according to the vernal equinox and the new moon.  So that leaves us yet with the Sabbath, the seventh day of the week.  We will list here the Sabbath references in the New Testament which pertain to the early church:

        1.  “A Sabbath day’s journey” (Acts 1:12).

        2.  “Paul and Barnabas in Sabbath meetings:

             Acts 13:14 “on the Sabbath day”

             Acts 13:42 “the next Sabbath”

             Acts 13:44 “the next Sabbath day came almost the whole city.”

             Acts 15:21 “being read in the synagogues every Sabbath day”

             Acts 16:13 “Sabbath…where prayer was wont to be made.”

             Acts 17:2 “Paul…three Sabbath days reasoned with them.”

             Acts 18:4 “reasoned in the synagogue every Sabbath,” and he continued there 18 months, verse 11.

D.  Jesus magnified the law, so every day is alike, and we keep all of them holy.

Answer:  Jesus did magnify the law.  He expanded its coverage so that not only is sin a commission by act, but also by thought, motive, and desire.  Where adultery was once accounted only by a physical relationship, now a person is guilty if he desires that relationship in his heart (Matt. 5:27,28).

        The same reasoning may be applied to the keeping of the Sabbath.  Now we are accountable for our very thoughts and desires as well (Isa. 58:13,14).  As for keeping every day holy, that is impossible, for only one day each week has been made holy by God.  No matter what man does, he cannot make one day, nor every day, holy.  The 7th day is holy and the other six days are not.

        Some folks contend that they live holy every day and thus the Sabbath injunction is abrogated.  Big deal!  Israel was also commanded to be holy every day (Lev. 19:2), but that did not relieve them of their obligation concerning the Sabbath.

E.  Sabbath means rest.  Jesus is our rest now, so we don’t need a weekly rest day.

Answer:  Such reasoning as this reveals a lack of understanding concerning the Sabbath; it was not a shadow of Jesus.  It prefigured a blessed state of spiritual rest into which the saints have been called but have not yet entered: cessation from our own labors (works, ways, habits, behaviour) as God ceased from His labors.  Hebrews 4:1-11 is most plain concerning the promise of this divine rest and the role which the Sabbath plays in it.  In verse 9 it is stated: “There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God.”   The word “rest” in this verse is Sabbath in the Greek and is properly rendered “the keeping of a Sabbath.”  The word rest in all the other verses of this chapter have to do with cessation from activity, labor, toil and work.

        God has called for His people to enter into a state of selflessness where they no longer do their own will nor follow their own ideas, plans and ambitions, but are completely lost in God, and their wills have become ONE with God’s will.  The Sabbath foreshadows that glorious state of being.  It is not in itself that holy state, but prefigures it.  God sanctified, blessed and hallowed the seventh day as a weekly reminder that man has a higher, nobler, heavenly calling, that of entering into the REST of God where God becomes the very apex and center of his existence, all of which is available in this life.

        To reject the Sabbath is to reject the call for which the Sabbath speaks, for until the church has entered into this state of holiness, the Sabbath will remain as a reminder to the church that they are called to be “partakers of the divine nature” (II Peter 1:4), and to cease from their own works, as God ceased from His.

F.  The days of the week have been changed so we don’t know which day is the Sabbath.

Answer:  While calendars have been changed many times, the days of the week have never changed.  The seven day cycle has been kept in perpetuity since man has kept records; and it is upon the basis of the seven day week that astronomers are able to calculate both past and future events.

        It is a simple matter of history that the Roman Church manipulated the people of the fourth century by honoring the day of their sun god (sun-day) and transferring the sanctity of the Sabbath to the day of the sun.  (Of course, the R.C. church did not actually desanctify the Sabbath; it only claimed to.) Encyclopedia Brittanica, Volume 21, page 565.

        But records were kept so that days were not confused: the whole world knows when Sunday is, doesn’t it?  And if that is not evidence enough, we need only to recall the Jewish people who for so many centuries have observed the Sabbath on the day we call Saturday.

        In the face of all the above evidence, is it any wonder that we believe that when John wrote that he was “in the Spirit on the Lord’s day” he was referring to the Sabbath of the Lord, the seventh day, which God Himself has declared will still be honored in the new heavens and the new earth (Isa. 66:22,23)?  (We have a free tract called, “Is The Sabbath Perpetual?”).

 

 

THE KINGDOM THAT IS

Harry Miller

        “The kingdom of God is not in word, but in power” (I Cor. 4:20).  Multitudes of professing Christians have accepted the lie that God’s kingdom is in WORD ONLY; a sort of philosophy, an abstract teaching, a doctrinal system of theology, a thing intangible, but to be accepted as a belief.  This is the way the powers of hell have successfully made the gospel of Christ of none effect to all men who believe God’s kingdom is in word only.

        Many will say, “Oh, yes, we believe in the spiritual kingdom of God;” by this, they mean that God is king of heaven.  Concerning the affairs of the governments of this world, they will state that God is not now king over them, but He is a king to be.  In other words, His literal, tangible, earthly rule is yet to come!  Of course, by this they mean that Christ is to set up His earthly reign in the city of Jerusalem.  Here He is to have a throne, and then He will rule over the nations of the world for a thousand years.  At the end of that time there will be a rebellion, and then all kingdoms will end as, also, will the world.

        Now, all this conjecture is built upon the twentieth chapter of the book of Revelation.  If this particular page of papyrus had blown away or disintegrated in the early centuries, millennialism would not have had a foot to stand upon.  This is the only place in the whole Bible that supports this theory.  And in supporting the theory, all other New Testament writers are contradicted, and even the words of our Saviour are made of none effect: “The hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear His voice, and shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation” (John 5:28,29).  “The day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away” (II Peter 3:10).  “The stars shall fall from heaven…They shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds…And He shall send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together His elect…Heaven and earth shall pass away” (Matt. 24:29-35).

        “The Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout…the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord” (I Thess. 4:16,17).  Now, it is very plain that after His coming there will be no saints left upon the earth; so, concerning the wicked – consider these words: “The Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord” (II Thess. 1:7-9).

        After His return there will be no sinners nor saints upon the earth – who will man the earth during the so-called millennium?  Well, Peter answered this question when he told us the earth would be “dissolved” and “burned up.”

        Observe that God’s vengeance will be against all who obey not the gospel of Jesus Christ.  Friends, it is growing late; it is high time we evaluate our position is Christ; it is again time that Christendom obey these words of the apostle Paul: “examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves” (II Cor. 13:5).  It is possible to be mistaken.  This is the time of the end, and again and again we are warned of the perils of this latter day.  Any form of religion that denies the power of Christ’s kingdom is not of God.

        The Kingdom of Christ is not a political affair: “The kingdom of God cometh not by observation: Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, Lo there!  For, behold the kingdom of God is within you” (Lk. 17:20,21).  God hates human politics.  His dominion is not like that of men.

        Jesus Christ will never set up a throne in Jerusalem.  This is the city that has a very bad reputation, “The great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified” (Rev. 11:8).  “The bondwoman…answereth to Jerusalem which now is, and is in bondage with her children…what saith the Scripture?  Cast out the bondwoman and her son: for the son of the bondwoman shall not be heir” (Gal. 4:22-30).  He who looks for the Glory of God to descend upon the “bondwoman” will look in vain.

        The words of the Lord given to Ezekiel certainly hold out little hope for the restoration of Jerusalem to God’s favor: “Son of man, cause Jerusalem to know her abominations…thou hast committed fornication with the Egyptians…Thou hast played the whore also with the Assyrians…Thou hast moreover multiplied thy fornications in the land of Canaan unto Chaldea…As I live, saith the Lord God, Sodom thy sister hath not done, she nor her daughters, as thou hast done, thou and thy daughters…When thy sisters, Sodom and her daughters, shall return to their former estate, then thou and thy daughters shall return to your former estate” (Ezek. 16).  We now know just exactly when the city with the bad spiritual name can be expected to return to God’s favor: after the restoration of Sodom!

        Is there hope for Sodom in these words: “As God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah and the neighboring cities thereof, saith the Lord; so shall no man abide there, neither shall any son of man dwell therein” (Jer. 50:40).  How shall we then expect to see the King of Glory set up His throne in the city of the “bondwoman”?

        Dr. Scofield, and all of the other dispensationalists, dogmatically state that Israel refused to accept Christ as their king.  “The kingdom did not then come, but was rejected” (Scofield’s Bible(?) page 1010).  “The rejected king now turns from the rejecting nation” (notes on page 1011, same so-called Bible).

        Bear in mind that every Israelite looked for the coming of the King who would save them from their enemies – especially the Roman rulers.  When they saw the power and influence of Jesus of Nazareth, “among the chief rulers many believed on Him” (John 12:42).  And there came a time when they said, “This is of a truth that prophet that should come into the world.  When Jesus therefore perceived that they would come and take Him by force, to make Him a king, He departed again into a mountain Himself alone” (John 6:15).

        Let us shout this from the house tops – Israel tried to force Jesus to be their king.  If His gospel were the good news of an earthly dynasty, with Him upon the throne, WHY did He reject their offer?  Have we not here the truth that Israel desperately tried to “force” Christ to be their king?  Instead of them rejecting Him, He rejected them!  If the kingdom of God, or the kingdom of heaven (There is no difference between these two; they both are entered by the new birth.), was to be of an earthly character, then here was the Saviour’s golden opportunity – but He refused it.  No earthly kingdom would ever be eternal; His rule and throne were to be forever: “He shall reign over the house of Jacob forever (not merely for a thousand years); and of His kingdom there shall be no end” (Luke 1:33).

        The corruption in “high places” among the chief rulers of Israel was exemplified in their diabolical attacks against the Saviour.  After He had refused their earthly throne, they then made plans to kill Him.  Before the Roman governor He was charged with sedition: an enemy of Caesar, so they said.  Even when Pilate said he found no fault in Him, the mob told Pilate that if he did not crucify Christ, he was no friend of Caesar.

        On trial for His life, He was asked by Pilate if He were a king.  Here is the Master’s reply which should settle forever the type or kind of kingdom of which He was king: “Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world” (John 18:36).  He did not deny His place as King: “Thou sayest that I am a king.  To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world” (verse 37).

        The kingdom that “cometh not by observation,” and which is “within you,” certainly was foreign to the dreams of national Israel.  They still wanted to have a “king like all the nations.”  And even today this same hope is within these apostates; but strangest of all, it has also become the fanatical belief of professing Christendom; “Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God” (I Cor. 15:50).  The kingdom of which our Lord is King cannot be compared with the monarchy of David, “For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost” (Rom. 14:17).

        King David had a great celebration at his coronation, “And he dealt among all the people, even among the whole multitude of Israel, as well to the women as men, to every one a cake of bread, and a good piece of flesh, and a flagon of wine” (II Sam. 6:19).  Every person could fill their stomachs; no matter how carnal, or ungodly, the kingdom after the flesh accepted them all.  How different things are in the kingdom that offers righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Ghost.

        “I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven…And there was given Him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom…His dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and His kingdom that which shall not be destroyed” (Dan. 7:13,14).  It is easy to see now why it was that Christ refused to accept an earthly political kingdom.  He had greater promises and even greater offers than those of apostate Judaism.  Did not Satan offer Him all the kingdoms of this world?  We can be certain that Satan’s offer was not an empty affair: “And the devil said unto Him, All this power will I give thee, and the glory of them: for that is delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will I give it” (Luke 4:6).  Earthly kingdoms belong to the devil!

        National Israel had chosen an earthly king, and they set up a “sinful kingdom”: its history of corruption, degeneration, and final end, are proof that such a government is not of divine order.  How can so-called Christian men hope for the restoration of such an ungodly affair?  How can they expect the holy Christ of Glory to come down and be a partaker of this governmental evil?

 

 

BE PREPARED!

Randall Walton

        Preparation is a word which we don’t use often, but hardly any accomplishment which is made is done without a great deal of preparation.

        Only the completely rash person would attempt to build a shopping mall, a house, an automobile, or an airplane without first securing an approved set of plans (preparation), which plans would specify in detail every aspect of the construction, the lay-out, the assembly, and the finished product.  And before serious work commenced, the proposed builder would ascertain if sufficient funds and materials and labor were available to complete the project.  A shortage of any one of those ingredients would be sufficient to precipitate a work stoppage.

        While we can all agree that it is wise to approach a physical undertaking with care and preparation, most Christians apparently do not feel the same way about spiritual and societal happenings.  We are about as prepared to face the circumstances of these last days as the apostles were the crucifixion of their Master!  Had they had eyes to see the truth of the events which propelled them toward that fateful moment, they might have prepared themselves for it rather than to have fled and forsaken their Lord to find a less hazardous environment.

        Throughout His ministry Jesus warned these men that He would be betrayed, condemned and would die, but they would not believe His words.  And when it happened, they were stunned.

        Now, global events are occurring which are portents of things to come, things which are not good.  Few Americans are willing to face the truth of impending disaster.  We have been led to believe that for some inexplicable reason we are a “favored nation” with God and that nothing but blessing is in store for us.  But Jesus declared, “unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required” (Luke 12:48).

        As a nation we have measured our values by our GNP rather than by moral standards.  We have gauged our strengths by the number and size of our nuclear warheads and our military might rather than by our spirituality.

        In our greed for wealth, we have let the hungry starve while we subsidize the farmer and pay him to grow no food or destroy it to keep it off the market.  We support the lazy and indolent with welfare payments and award the immoral with dignity.  We are a nation too proud to admit our faults and too stubborn to call upon God for mercy.  We send evangelists and missionaries to every nation in the world while at home we languish for spiritual nourishment.

        Shall we escape the calamities which are foretold in Scriptures concerning these times?  Would the Almighty be just if He didn’t allow judgment to befall this country?

        We cannot predict how soon judgment will come to our beloved nation, but this we know: it will be severe, catastrophic, horrible.  When Jesus classified the coming tribulation the worst ever, it should stir us to begin to prepare in whatever way we possibly can to meet the issues that are heading our way.

        The greatest preparation, of course, is spiritual.  People should be busy in serious Bible study, in prayer, in deep devotion to God.  It is time to avoid the religious soap operas on TV, the entertainment, the hollow worship in the name of Jehovah.  It is time to get close to God, to search the Scriptures, to know what is required of those who will have a close walk with God.  It’s one thing to sing, “Just a Closer Walk With Thee,” and it’s something else to pay the price to acquire that close walk.

        It is also appropriate to make preparation for your physical and material needs.  We recommend that, if it is at all possible, that God’s people leave the cities and locate in the country where they can have a few acres to raise food for themselves and others.  The day is coming when no one will be permitted to buy or sell unless they are in complete cooperation with the beast system.  And those who do this will capitulate into the hold and bondage of the devil.  The only alternative to this will be martyrdom, and in these days, torture and brutality have been refined to an art.

        We urge you to spend time with the Lord.  Seek Him diligently.  Learn to listen for His “still small voice” as He speaks to your heart.  Prepare, be ready, have no ties to the world that are too difficult to let go.  “Lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven,” then the things of earth will never become a snare to you.”

“REMEMBER LOT’S WIFE”

 

 

SOWING AND REAPING

Randall Walton

        The Bible is most explicit concerning the fruits of man’s labors: the world is likened unto a field which is cultivated and harvested.  The harvest is entirely dependent upon the seed which has been planted, not in amount, but in kind.  Thus, if a farmer sows ragweed he will expect to harvest ragweed, not corn, nor rye, nor soybeans.

        It would be the heighth of absurdity for the farmer who had planted ragweed to get upset when he went to his field and he found there were no soybeans.  He could only add to the ludicrousness of the situation by demanding that the government spend millions of dollars in research to guarantee that he and other farmers will reap soybeans even if they continue to plant ragweed.

        There is a law which works as well among mankind as in agriculture: “For whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap” (Gal. 6:7).

Rebellion Personified

        We live in a day when this law of retribution is being defied, denounced and cursed.  Man is demanding soybeans for planted ragweed.  He is defying the Almighty’s law of justice and seeking for legal means to circumvent the awful truth of sowing and reaping.  It is common knowledge that the Sodomite population of our society is nearly totally responsible for the transmittal of the dread Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome disease called AIDS.

        God fairly and publicly gave notice to the fact that He will not approve of homosexuality nor of Sodomy (Sodomy is anal intercourse).  God created mankind male and female and He, the Creator, declared the limits and bounds for physical relationships among His creatures.  He also stated that those who stray beyond those limits and bounds will surely pay a price for their defiance of God’s order and command.  It is merely a matter of ragweed or soybeans.

Explosion Of Corruption

        From the days of antiquity mankind has been a philanderer.  Degeneracy was so prolific before the great flood of Noah’s day that God was obligated to bring universal destruction upon the earth.  It is significant that along with the moral corruption, violence was a way of life in that day.

        Likewise, the men of Sodom and Gomorrah were given to vile passions as well as violence (Gen. 19:9).  God’s judgment fell upon those cities of disgusting degradation, and rightly so, for it was a matter of ragweed or soybeans.

        And in this day corruption has exploded like a great mushrooming cloud of an atomic blast whose malevolent fallout reaches out to envelop the offended as well as the offender.  It seems that there is no limit to the depths of reckless depravity to which man is willing to fall.

        It is impossible for us to mention the multitude of heinous and hideous sexual perversions which abound in the earth today, and most of them are accompanied by some form of violence.  These range all the way from swinger’s clubs, to strip joints, to dial-a-porn, child molestation and abuse, human sacrifice, demon intercourse, etc.

A Harvest Of Disease

        But all of this sowing to the lustful flesh does not go unnoticed by the Ruler of the universe.  If sin is not answered by judgment, then it can be proven false that one reaps as he sows.  It can be shown that you can plant ragweed and gather soybeans.

        But, behold the record: According to a recent report in U.S. News & World Report (U.S.N. & W.R.), “Until recent years, public health experts counted barely five types of sexually transmitted diseases (STD).  Now, they know that more than a score (20) exist.”  The report then listed eight of the worst of these STD’S.  Here they are: AIDS, Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, Genital Herpes, Trichomoniasis, Veneral Warts, Syphilis, and Pelvic-inflammatory disease (PID).

        Some of these are fairly new and some are becoming resistant to older, reliable medication.  The cause for all this?  An increase in promiscuity produces an increase in sexual diseases!  Sounds simple doesn’t it?

        But has anyone noticed that no one is demanding that the participating parties cease and desist from their ungodly practices?  No, the sowers of ragweed are demanding soybeans!  They are clamoring for “safe sex,” unbridled approval of their nefarious indulgences, and they expect the rest of us to subsidize their filthmongering; apparently they are willing to resort to violence to see that they have their own way.

        U.S.N. & W.R. states that “the nation is in the grip of an STD epidemic that infects an average of 33,000 people a day.  That figures to 12 million cases a year, up from 4 million in 1980.”  And amazingly it adds, “No authority in public health is urging adults to shun sex.”  Illicit sex is the cause; STD is the effect, and virtually no one has guts enough to tell the truth about it.  Instead, the high schools provide on-campus clinics to give advice about “safe sex,” and sex education classes merely whet the appetites of youngsters to experiment.

        The prime mover behind the whole disaster is none other than Satan himself who uses the normal sexual drive in mankind to fight against God.  The entire society is being propelled downward by the sheer force of demon inspiration in an area in which man is so tremendously vulnerable.  Sex and the sex act with the accompanying thrills and excitement of bliss and ecstasy are nearly irresistible to the carnal man.  Satan capitalizes on this experience which is not only pleasurable, but with many people is almost a necessity.

        The message is heralded forth that it is good, it is great, there are no limitations, no barriers; nothing so good could ever be wrong.

        But God said otherwise: “For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother and cleave unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.”  Sex is exclusive of all but the two who are joined in holy matrimony.  This is God’s order, God’s way, God’s plan.  Anything outside this basic, simple standard is sin and is subject to judgment and condemnation.

        You cannot sow ragweed and reap soybeans!

 

 

THE HOLY SPIRIT

Randall Walton

        There is a wide divergence of opinion among religionists concerning the Holy Spirit, or the Holy Ghost (either of which is correct).  Some say the Holy Spirit is a person, a divine entity separate from the Almighty but a member of the Godhead.  Others claim that the Holy Spirit is an essence or influence and is made manifest by the power of God – not a personal being, but a radiation of the personality of God.

        The word spirit (or ghost) comes from the Greek pneuma which is properly translated as wind or air (A pneumatic tire, for example, is one which holds air).  Jesus used this as an analogy when He was conversing with Nicodemus, John 3:8; “The wind (pneuma) bloweth where it listeth (wills), and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit (Pneuma).”

        When a person is converted, or born again, he knows that something has happened (he hears the sound thereof), but he is not aware of its origin, its direction, or its purpose, nor has he power to direct it or control it.  It is a force, overpowering, overwhelming, and supernatural, as well as inexplicable.  On the day of Pentecost, the disciples heard the sound “as of a rushing mighty wind,” and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost (pneuma) and spoke with other tongues as the Spirit (pneuma) gave them utterance (Acts 2:1-4)

        Many people refer to this experience as “the Holy Ghost,” and they make statements such as, “he got the Holy Ghost.”  The question here is – Is the Holy Ghost the experience, or does the Holy Ghost cause the experience?

        And if the Holy Spirit causes the experience is the Spirit a person or an object (or essence)?  Are there such things as spirit beings, entities which live, have mobility, are able to contact people and influence lives?

What Is The Holy Ghost?

        After Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist, He “saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon Him” (Matt. 3:16).  Mark 1:10, Luke 3:22 and John 1:32,33 reaffirm this same happening.  Take careful cognizance of the fact that Jesus saw the Holy Spirit descending like a dove.  The record does not say that He felt or sensed, or was moved upon, but that He saw the Spirit (pneuma), and that the Spirit (pneuma) had a form or bodily shape.

        We, therefore, conclude that the Holy Spirit has substance, form and mobility, and is not limited to place nor space, nor circumstance.  The Holy Spirit’s identity is not confined to an essence or influence, nor even the expression of the power of God.

        Jesus used several terms regarding the Holy Ghost which indicate personality and individuality.  The use of the word “Comforter,” John 14, is highly significant because it sets forth the capability of One who is able to give comfort, solace, encouragement, and aid.  “Comforter” comes from the Greek parkletos, a word which means “called to one’s side,” and also indicates an intercessor or advocate.  Jesus stated in John 14:16 and 17 that He would pray the Father, and He would send another (not a different one, but another; an additional, of the same kind or order) Comforter, to abide with them forever, and that He, the Comforter or paraclete, would be in them!  In I John 2:1, Jesus is referred to as an advocate (paraclete), and in addition, the Holy Spirit is another advocate.

        But notice the use of the word He, a masculine personal pronoun which is used over and over in reference to the Holy Spirit.  The word pneuma is neuter; that is, no gender whatever is indicated, and of course, this agrees with the Scriptures concerning heavenly beings.  Jesus said concerning angels that they neither marry nor are given in marriage (Matt. 22:29,30).  Sexual differences and relationships are confined to this earthly sphere of existence.

        But, while speaking of the Spirit (neuter), Jesus used both a masculine pronoun and a masculine noun (paraclete) to describe the work and ministry of Him, and by so doing, He firmly establishes the fact that the Comforter is a Person, a divine Being, a powerful advocate who takes up residence in the heart of all who are believers.

The Ministry Of The Comforter

        Jesus plainly described in John the work that the Father sent the Comforter to accomplish:

        He shall:

                Guide into all truth (16:13)

                Hear (16:23)

                Speak (16:13)

                Show things to come (16:13)

                Glorify Jesus (16:14)

                Receive from Jesus and show it to us (16:14)

                Abide with us forever (14:16)

                Dwell with us (14:16)

                Be in us (14:16)

                Teach us all things (14:26)

                Bring the sayings of Jesus to our remembrance (14:26)

                Reprove the world of sin, righteousness and judgment (14:8-11)

                Testify of Jesus (15:26)

                Speak through His servants (Mark 13:11)

Working Manifestations

        All of these manifestations require the use of attributes which are very similar to physical characteristics: hearing, speaking, teaching, etc.  To assume that a mere essence or the “power of God” could accomplish such tasks as those ascribed to the Holy Spirit by Jesus, is to display a lack of understanding of both the Scriptures and the mighty power of the Holy Spirit.  The Book of Acts is a vivid testimony of the ministry of the Spirit as He worked in and among the members of the early church.  Statements which refer to the Holy Ghost reveal that those saints regarded Him as a person and not a thing or an inanimate object, force or essence.

        “Lie to the Holy Ghost” (5:3)

        “we are his witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God

hath given to them that obey him” (5:32

        “resist the Holy Ghost” (7:51)

        “Comfort of the Holy Ghost” (9:31)

        “the Holy Ghost said” (13:2)

        “sent forth by the Holy Ghost” (13:4)

        “it seemed good to the Holy Ghost” (15:28)

        “were forbidden of the Holy Ghost” (16:6)

        “the Holy Ghost witnesseth” (20:28)

        “the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers (20:28)

        “Thus saith the Holy Ghost” (21:11)

        “sanctified by the Holy Ghost” (Rom. 15:16)

        “the Holy Ghost teacheth” (I Cor. 2:13)

        “body is the temple of the Holy Ghost” (I Cor. 6:19)

        “communion of the Holy Ghost” (II Cor. 13:14)

        “grieve not the Holy Spirit” (Eph. 4:30)

        “Joy of the Holy Ghost” (I Thess. 1:6)

        “Holy Ghost also is a witness” (Heb. 10:15)

        “moved by the Holy Ghost” (II Pet. 1:21)

        Here, once more, are attributes that bear witness to the fact that the Holy Spirit is not an “it” or a “thing,” but a living being sent from the Father to direct the affairs of the church.  Other Scriptures substantiate this same truth: “the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God” – “the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God” (I Cor. 2:11,12).  He, the Spirit of Truth, searches out the truths of God and teaches those truths to God’s people.

        In Romans 8:16 and 26, the expression “the Spirit itself” appears in the King James Version as a mistranslation and should be “himself” in order to agree with the masculine pronoun used by Jesus in John.  The reflexive pronoun autos used in Romans 8 may be masculine, feminine or neuter depending upon the gender of the subject which, in this case, is neuter (pneuma); however, as we pointed out earlier, the Spirit is called the paraclete, or Comforter, which is most definitely a masculine word.  Therefore, it is always proper to refer to the Holy Ghost as He, Him, Himself, His.  He is not just a force or a radiation from the living God.

What About The Godhead?

        On the basis of the above research the question naturally arises concerning the position of the Comforter in relation to the Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, His Son.  What about the doctrine of the Trinity?  Is the Holy Ghost included in the Godhead?  Are there but two persons in the Godhead, or is there but one?  These questions have been the basis for divisions among several denominations.

        Let us first make a valid comparison of God (Theos) and the Holy Spirit based upon the Scriptural record.

        In brief summary we can make the following statements:

        God is:

                Omnipotent – Rev. 19:6; Matt. 28:18

                Omniscient – Acts 15:18; Rom. 11:33-36

                Omnipresent – Matt. 28:20

                Indwelling the people of God – I John 4:12,15,16

        The Holy Spirit is:

                Omnipotent – Luke 1:35

                Omniscient – I Cor. 2:11

                Omnipresent – John 14:16

                Indwelling the people of God – I Cor. 3:16; Rom. 8:11

        This should be sufficient to convince us that the attributes which are a part of the nature of God are also attributes of the Holy Ghost.  He is as God is.  And while the Almighty shares the same divine qualities and characteristics with the Holy Spirit, it is significant that the Father, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit are mentioned in the same context, giving us reason to believe that they are separate entities and are yet bound together into a compound unity which we call the Godhead, or the Supreme Divine Government of the Universe.

        Consider the following:

        When Jesus was baptized, the Holy Ghost was seen upon Him and the Father spoke from heaven saying, “This is my beloved Son” (Matt. 3:16,17).

        In Matthew 28:19 Jesus uttered His famous “Father, Son and Holy Ghost” proclamation in regard to baptism.  (Further study in the word reveals that the early disciples baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus, a custom which we follow today.)  The very fact that Jesus made this distinction should be ample proof to us that there is more than one Being in the Godhead, and also that the Holy Spirit is considered one of those entities.

        In II Cor. 13:14 Paul speaks of three distinct persons: “The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost” (Also see Acts 10:38).

        It is certainly not a mere coincidence that these Scriptures appear as they do.  If all Divinity were limited to one great divine being, then these, as well as many other verses, have no real meaning; in fact, they are superfluous.  But since God did not inspire superfluity, we judge these to be accurate and well-founded.

        Jesus stated quite plainly, “My Father is greater than I” (John 14:28).  Yet He also declared, “I and my Father are one” (John 10:30).

        This is not a contradiction.  What is set forth in these declarations of Jesus is the perfect unity of Divinity, while also showing that there are degrees or different levels of divine Being in the heavenly order.  We are not told the precise position of the Holy Spirit.  One thing we know for sure is that He speaks whatever He is instructed to speak by the Heavenly Father, and He does whatever He is told to do.  We know also that by and through Him, we have access to the Almighty Living God, The Great and Powerful Designer of the universe, the One who worketh all things after the pleasure of His own will (John 2:18; Eph. 1:9-11).

 

 

WATCHING & WAITING

Randall Walton

        We have been watching and waiting for a sign which will tell us much more about what is going on in the inner circles of government and politics.  It is very difficult to come to any form or aspect of behavior on the part of the Congressional decisions of the men and women who make up the final codes of the overall habits of the Congress.  We are forced to admit that we don’t fully agree with all the “news” reports that are released from Washington, D.C.; it is totally inadequate to find any resource or plausible explanation for the various announcements that come out of their closed–door decisions.

        We understand that the present reality(?) of Congressional hearings has helped put our minimum requirements on the table as if nothing new has come out of the negotiations, that everything is now all right, and nothing can obliterate the fact of our huge debt to China and other countries as well.

        Our indelible debt to China has us begging for mercy from a country which is at variance against us.  How did we ever get so in debt to a communistic government which really despises everything we stand for?  It is highly improper that we find ourselves loathing against the ruthlessness of this dictatorship.  We wonder, “why?”  Why did we, as the freedom loving masters of the world, allow ourselves to bow down to the whims and facts of life on such a grand scale?

        Something has gone wrong when the Chinese overlords have the will power to over ride any and all of our claims of independence.  The last estimate we approved had us owing them an astronomical payment at least for the next 10 (ten) years!  That is a long time!  And that only includes the bulk of our indebtedness to them, the Chinese.

        Now, we owe them (not that they owe us anything), and they have the means to require us to pay our debts before they are forgiven.  We wonder how soon they will demand that a large part of our indebtedness be paid?  And who will they assume that our indebtedness to them be paid?

        This is not the only PROBLEM which faces us in these days of uncertainty and dislocation.  There are so many trials and pitfalls aloof in the world; there exists so many places that are under the cruel heel of tyranny.  It is a world-wide situation which is claiming to be the foremost problem of all.  Here we have from Morocco to Kenya to Egypt and the lower countries the ideal problems which are being used to conquer the world under the cruel hand of bigotry and scoundrel.

        It is an outstanding accomplishment on the part of ecclesiastical anointing.  No one seems to know the special part of societal degradation, but it seems to be that the greater part of certainty in keeping the avenues safe to everyone who claims to be Christian, is being shown the inevitable truth that is so lacking in the day-to-day carrying forth of the great and miraculous truths of the Holy Bible!  The Word of God is the most sought out for reality of the present kingdom of God, and His mighty truths are being ministered to the people of God, because the days are evil and corrupt, and few there be who honor the King of glory!

 

 

THE DAY OF SALVATION

Randall Walton

          “I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in THE day of salvation have I succored thee: behold, now is the accepted time: behold, NOW is THE day of salvation.” II Corinthians 6:2

        The first part of this verse is a quote from Isa. 49:8.  Then Paul informs us that Isaiah was referring to our time, or the era when the New Covenant is in force, this time which is known by many as the “church age,” or the “day of grace” which began with the crucifixion and resurrection of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.

        It is this period known as NOW which is the day of salvation.  There are those who teach that now is a day of salvation, but not the day: they claim that there will be another day, another time, during which millions of people will be saved.  This notion is, of course, predicated upon a literal interpretation of Revelation 20:1-6, and has absolutely no credibility anywhere in the Holy Scriptures.

        In fact, the above quotation from II Corinthians totally obliterates the possibility of any future time or day of salvation.  For all of humanity, it is NOW or NEVER!

        It is now that the Holy Spirit is convicting mankind of sin and leading them to the cross and the precious blood of Jesus.  This is the time when people are being “delivered from the power of darkness” and are being “translated into the kingdom of his dear Son.” Col. 1:13

        Yes, this is the kingdom age when as citizens of the kingdom of God we are “heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Jesus Christ.” Rom. 8:17  We admit that we are “strangers and pilgrims” on this earth, just passing through on our way to glory.  This world is not our home, for we are heavenly people (I Cor. 15:48) sent here for a specific purpose. (John 20:21).

        Jesus made it most plain in His parables of Matthew 13 that this age will come to a close with a great harvest of souls when He called “the children of the kingdom.”  He said the harvest will occur at “the end of the world.” (aion, Gr.=age) Matt. 13:38-39.  The eternal purpose of the Heavenly Father will be finished, completed, fulfilled, perfected when THIS AGE ends!