Archive for the ‘Doctrine’ Category

Sermon: Millennial Utopia

Saturday, September 16th, 2017

GOTKOG Book Cover 2016 BOTH FINAL

COGwriter

The Continuing Church of God is pleased to announce this sermon from its ContinuingCOG channel:

1:14:22

Throughout history, many humans have wanted a prosperous society free of crime. Some have attempted to establish utopian communities. Is such a society possible? Will humans do this? Will it take the return of Jesus Christ to make this happen? Could the thousand year millennial period referred to in the Book of Revelation be the utopia that many have longed for? If utopia is coming, what will it be like?

Here is a link to the sermon: Millennial Utopia.

Some items of related interest may include:

Did The Early Church Teach Millenarianism? Was the millennium (sometimes called chiliasm) taught by early Christians? Who condemned it? Will Jesus literally reign for 1000 years on the earth? Is this time near? Two related sermons are available Millennial Utopia and The Millennium.
Does God Have a 6,000 Year Plan? What Year Does the 6,000 Years End? Was a 6000 year time allowed for humans to rule followed by a literal thousand year reign of Christ on Earth taught by the early Christians? Does God have 7,000 year plan? What year may the six thousand years of human rule end? When will Jesus return? 2026 or 20xx? There is also a video titled The 6000 Year Plan: Is the end of humanity’s reign almost up? Here is a link to the article in Spanish: ¿Tiene Dios un plan de 6,000 años?
When Will the Great Tribulation Begin? 2017, 2018, or 2019? Can the Great Tribulation begin today? What happens before the Great Tribulation in the “beginning of sorrows”? What happens in the Great Tribulation and the Day of the Lord? Is this the time of the Gentiles? When is the earliest that the Great Tribulation can begin? What is the Day of the Lord? Who are the 144,000? Here is a version of the article in the Spanish language: ¿Puede comenzar la Gran Tribulación en 2016 o 2017? ¿Es el Tiempo de los Gentiles? You can also see the English language sermon videos: The Great Tribulation from the Mount of Olives and Can the Great Tribulation begin before 2020? A shorter video is: Will the Great Tribulation Start in 2017?
The Times of the Gentiles Has there been more than one time of the Gentiles? Are we in it now or in the time of Anglo-America? What will the final time of the Gentiles be like? A related sermon is available and is titled: The Times of the Gentiles.
Feast of Tabernacles’ Sites for 2017 This is information on the Feast of Tabernacles’ sites for the Continuing Church of God in 2017. The Feast in 2017 Services will begin the evening of October 4th.
Should You Observe God’s Holy Days or Demonic Holidays? This is a free pdf booklet explaining what the Bible and history shows about God’s Holy Days and popular holidays. A related sermon is Which Spring Days should Christians observe?
How to Keep God’s Festivals Many have heard of God’s Holy Days and wonder how they are kept in the 21st century. This is an overview article. A related sermon is also available titled: How to Keep God’s Feasts.
The Gospel of the Kingdom of God This free online pdf booklet has answers many questions people have about the Gospel of the Kingdom of God and explains why it is the solution to the issues the world is facing. Here are links to three related sermons: The World’s False Gospel, The Gospel of the Kingdom: From the New and Old Testaments, and The Kingdom of God is the Solution.

Where is the True Christian Church Today? This free online pdf booklet answers that question and includes 18 proofs, clues, and signs to identify the true vs. false Christian church. Plus 7 proofs, clues, and signs to help identify Laodicean churches. A related sermon is also available: Where is the True Christian Church? Here is a link to the booklet in the Spanish language: ¿Dónde está la verdadera Iglesia cristiana de hoy? Here is a link in the German language: WO IST DIE WAHRE CHRISTLICHE KIRCHE HEUTE? Here is a link in the French language: Où est la vraie Église Chrétienne aujourd’hui?
Continuing History of the Church of God This pdf booklet is a historical overview of the true Church of God and some of its main opponents from Acts 2 to the 21st century. Related sermon links include Continuing History of the Church of God: c. 31 to c. 300 A.D. and Continuing History of the Church of God: 4th-16th Centuries and Continuing History of the Church of God: 17th-20th Centuries. The booklet is available in Spanish: Continuación de la Historia de la Iglesia de Dios, German: Kontinuierliche Geschichte der Kirche Gottes, and Ekegusii Omogano Bw’ekanisa Ya Nyasae Egendererete.
CCOG.ORG Continuing Church of God The group striving to be most faithful amongst all real Christian groups to the word of God. To see how CCOG has done so far, here are links to two sermons Continuing Church of God (CCOG) first year anniversary: What has been accomplished? and The Continuing Church of God: Two Years of Proclamation. Here is a written link to a version of that sermon in the Spanish language: Aniversario del primer año de la Continuación de la Iglesia de Dios: ¿Qué se ha cumplido?
Congregations of the Continuing Church of God This is a listing of congregations and groups of the Continuing Church of God around the world.
CCOG.ASIA We in the Continuing Church of God also have the url www.ccog.asia which has a focus on Asia and has various articles in Mandarin Chinese as well as some in English, plus some items in other Asian languages. 我们在继续神的教会也提供此网址 www.ccog.asia, 关注于亚洲并且有各种各样的中英文文章,其中一些用菲律宾语翻译的文章也正在进行中,准备添加到这个网站中。 Here is a link to our Statement of Beliefs in Mandarin Chinese 继续神的教会的信仰声明.
CCOG.IN This is a website targeted towards those of Indian heritage. It has a link to an edited Hindi translation of The Mystery of the Ages and is expected to have more non-English language materials in the future.
CCOG.EU This is a website targeted toward Europe. It has materials in more than one language (currently it has English, Dutch, and Serbian, with links also to Spanish) and it is intended to have additional language materials added.
CCOG.NZ This is a website targeted towards New Zealand and others with a British-descended background.
CCOGAFRICA.ORG This is a website targeted towards those in Africa.
CCOGCANADA.CA This is a website targeted towards those in Canada.
CDLIDD.ES La Continuación de la Iglesia de Dios. This is the Spanish language website for the Continuing Church of God.
PNIND.PH Patuloy na Iglesya ng Diyos. This is the Philippines website Continuing Church of God. It has information in English and Tagalog.
CCOGAfrica channel. This has messages from African pastors in African languages such as Kalenjin, Kiswahili, Embu, and Dholuo.
Bible News Prophecy online radio. This is an audio version of the Bible News Prophecy videos as well as some ContinuingCOG channel sermons. It is also available as a mobile app.
ContinuingCOG channel. Dr. Thiel has produced scores of YouTube video sermons for this channel. Note: Since these are sermon-length, they can take a little longer to load than other YouTube videos.

Ba’al-ifornia: California’s intent to change gender definitions

Friday, September 15th, 2017


Transgender ‘pride’ flag with transgender symbol

COGwriter

The State of California wants to redefine gender and take other steps against natural biology. Joseph Farah reported the following:

Another day in Ba’al-ifornia

I’ll never forget the day I stepped into the state Capitol in Sacramento for the first time. …

A lot of bad things happen in that place – and it’s getting worse all the time.

Let me give you a few examples:

  • SB 179: “Change Your Gender Bill” – This bill completely changes the meaning of the words “male” and “female,” from a physical description of anatomical reality, to a description of feelings and self-identification. It also officially creates a third gender, “non-binary,” for those who don’t want to identity exclusively as either sex. The bill make it easier to change the gender listed on their driver’s licenses or birth certificates to one of three options, by simply filling out a form.
  • SB 310: “Gender Changes for Inmates” – This bill will make it easier for inmates to change names and gender while in jail or prison. Currently, a gender change while in jail must be approved by correctional facility officials. This bill would leave the decision up to a disinterested judge. Opponents believe this will lead to more men changing their sex identity to female so they can be incarcerated with women.
  • SB 396: “Gender Identity Sensitivity Training” – Businesses with over 50 employees will be required to provide at least two hours of training and education regarding harassment based on gender identity, gender expression and sexual orientation. The bill analysis states that the state Fair Employment and Housing Council issued new regulations in July of 2017 regarding discrimination based on gender identity: “These regulations address key topics such as the rights of employees to use restrooms, locker rooms, and other similar facilities corresponding to their gender identity; to dress in accord with their gender identity and expression; and to be addressed by their preferred name and gender pronoun.”
  • SB 219: “LGBT Rights in Long-term Care Facilities” – This bill will impose fines and jail time on any long-term care center worker whose patients identifying as transgender aren’t referred to by their preferred gender pronoun. (The gender pronoun list could contain as many as 50 options.) The bill also mandates that gender be determined by self-identification, not biology. There are no exemptions for religious institutions.
  • AB 569: “Prohibits Pro-Life Codes of Conduct” – This bill specifically outlaws employer codes of conduct that respect the rights of employees to oppose abortion, sex outside of marriage, or contraception, and exposes them to devastating and expensive lawsuits. This includes all churches, religiously affiliated schools, and pro-life nonprofits. There is a very narrow exemption for ministers.

I now realize it is impossible to explain California politics any other way than this – Ba’al worship. …

Ba’al worship is at the root of all this insanity you see taking place in California and the way a former Judeo-Christian culture is being corrupted, toppled and replaced by old-fashioned paganism. …

But the thing that really never struck me before about Ba’al worship was its near total focus on challenging the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob with abominations all too familiar to 21st century America:

  • child sacrifice;
  • an assault on gender roles;
  • war on marriage.

Sound familiar? 09/14/17 http://www.wnd.com/2017/09/another-day-in-baal-ifornia/

Ancient pagan priests used to employ various tricks to get people to believe that their idols talked to them, healed them, prophesied for them, or took various actions that seemed impossible for inanimate objects.

Now political leaders in California want people to believe a lie.

And more than one lie.

One’s gender is a biological matter. It is not a matter of human choice.

Even those who get their bodies mutilated and genitalia apparently changed, still have to take artificial hormones, etc. in order to maintain their chosen gender.

Consider also the following:

4 May 2017

Researchers have revealed a breakthrough is how the sexes really differ from each other.

A groundbreaking genetic study pinponted 6500 genes that differ between men and women.

Experts say it could have a profound effect in the way we identify and treat everything from disease to fertility. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-4475252/There-6-500-genetic-differences-men-women.html#ixzz4l2KCqvLW

May 7, 2017

A biological male can take hormones, surgically alter his body and identify as “female,” but the procedures still won’t make him a woman, according to new evidence found by Israeli researchers.

That’s because there are at least 6,500 genes that contain sex-specific instructions for males and females.

For the study by Israel’s Weizmann Institute of Science, professor Shmuel Pietrokovski and Dr. Moran Gershoni, both researchers from the institute’s Molecular Genetics Department, “looked closely at around 20,000 protein-coding genes, sorting them by sex and searching for differences in expression in each tissue. They eventually identified around 6,500 genes with activity that was biased toward one sex or the other in at least one tissue, adding to the already major biological differences between men and women.” …

The new findings are further evidence that biological males cannot simply “transition” into females and vice versa, argues Mat Staver, founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel.

“This recent study from Israel’s Weizmann Institute of Science further proves that you cannot fool Mother Nature,” Staver said. “The saying, ‘I think, therefore, I am’ is best left to philosophy and not science. Gender confusion is mental, not physical or biological. God made male and female, and no amount of protestation will change the natural created order.”

Staver called the idea that a person can choose his or her gender “fiction.”

“These Israeli scientists identified over 6,500 genes with activity that was biased toward one sex or the other in at least one tissue,” he said. “That clearly validates the genetic differences between men and women.” http://www.wnd.com/2017/05/study-more-proof-a-man-can-never-become-a-woman/

Of course, many ‘moderns’ want to act like there is no difference, but the Bible is clear that men and women are different. The biological reality is that men and women are different. God warned that there would be those “who suppress the truth in unrighteousness” (Romans 1:18). But the truth is still the truth.

As far as transgender surgeries go, not only are they expensive, long-term studies for those surgically-transgendered tended to show such poor outcomes that places like Johns Hopkins stopped performing such surgeries (at least for a time).

Many, if not most, transgender people ‘cross-dress,’ yet that is condemned as an abomination in the Bible:

5 A woman shall not wear anything that pertains to a man, nor shall a man put on a woman’s garment, for all who do so are an abomination to the Lord your God. (Deuteronomy 22:5)

The Bible clearly condemns cross-dressing. The Bible also condemns males acting effeminate:

9 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, 10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. (1 Corinthians 6:9-10, KJV)

Males are not to act like they are female. Nor females like males.

The Bible warns against not only sexual immorality, but approving it:

20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, 21 because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man — and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things.

24 Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves, 25 who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.

26 For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. 27 Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due.

28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting; 29 being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; they are whisperers, 30 backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, 31 undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful; 32 who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them. (Romans 1:20-32)

The LGBTQ crowd, along with government officials, are INVENTORS OF EVIL THINGS! We are not to approve of such practices! Surely the politicians in the State of California should not attempt to legislate approval of such abominations.

The Bible warns about those type of leaders:

12…Those who lead you cause you to err, And destroy the way of your paths. (Isaiah 3:12)

16 For the leaders of this people cause them to err, And those who are led by them are destroyed (Isaiah 9:16).

Leaders that ignore what the Bible teaches are leading others toward destruction.

The USA is not benefiting from homosexuality or the transgender agenda. Surgically changing one’s sex organs is dishonoring one’s body. Pretending to be a sex other than what one was born as is not wise (the exceptionally rare people born with both sets of genitalia is another matter, which is beyond the scope of this article).

God made humans male and female:

27 So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. (Genesis 1:27)

Nowhere in the Bible is any human considered to be any sex/gender other than male or female. And those who act otherwise are warned against (Deuteronomy 22:5; 1 Corinthians 6:10-12; Romans 1:18-32). One is not a different gender than their actual genitalia.

But many others have their own, antibiblical ideas. Yet:

33 God is not the author of confusion (1 Corinthians 14:33)

The transgender agenda encourages and exploits confusion. It is NOT good for those who consider themselves transgendered.

14 Blessed are those who do His commandments, that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter through the gates into the city. 15 But outside are dogs and sorcerers and sexually immoral and murderers and idolaters, and whoever loves and practices a lie. (Revelation 22:14-15)

Keep God’s commandments! Do not believe the lies of those pushing sexual and gender immorality.

It is a bad move when the transgender agenda is pushed by government officials.

Some items of possibly related interest may include:

USA pushing gender confusion On May 13, 2016, the Obama Administration sent notices to school districts around the USA on how it wants them to deal with toilets, lockers, sports, and other issues of interest to the LGBT crowd. The Obama Administration has redefined the word ‘sex’ as written in the 1964 Civil Rights Act as expanded in 1972. Does the Bible teach transgenderism? Are accommodations for those considering themselves transgendered helpful or evil? What does the Bible teach about cross-dressing and other transgender issues? Does the Bible warn of terrible consequences for those who merely approve the LBGT agenda? This is a video.
Cross-dressing and other assaults against your children. What should you do? Is there an agenda to turn your children and/or grandchildren away from biblical morality and towards practices promoted by homosexuals? What does the Bible teach about cross-dressing? What should parents do? If there is an agenda, what has been going on? There are also two YouTube videos related to this, titled Transgender ‘Woe to those who call evil good’ and Cross dressing and Other Assaults Against Your Children.
Pornography: A scourge on society Is pornography harmless fun? Does the Bible teach anything about it? What are the views of some involved with it? A related sermons is titled: Pornography, False Comfort, and False Religion. Here a shorter YouTube video Pornography: Harmless Fun or a Scourge on Society?
The Bible Condemns Homosexuality “Same-sex marriage” for “gays” and lesbians is becoming more acceptable to many. What does the Bible teach about homosexuality? Can homosexuals change? A related video sermon is titled: What Does the Bible Really Teach about Homosexuality?
Making Your Marriage Work Marriage is not always easy, but it pictures a divine relationship. How can you make your marriage work? Here is a link to the video sermon: You Can Make YOUR Marriage Work.
Love, Marriage, and Sex It is important to get them in the right order.
Husbands Love Your Wives An article written by the late Selmer Hegvold.
Preparing for the ‘Short Work’ and The Famine of the Word What is the ‘short work’ of Romans 9:28? Who is preparing for it? Here is a link to a related video sermon titled: The Short Work.
The Final Phase of the Work What is the final phase of the work? Who will lead it? Do you have the courage to support it? Here is a related YouTube video titled The Final Phase of the Work. The written article has been translated into Spanish La Fase Final de la Obra.
When Will the Great Tribulation Begin? 2017, 2018, or 2019? Can the Great Tribulation begin today? What happens before the Great Tribulation in the “beginning of sorrows”? What happens in the Great Tribulation and the Day of the Lord? Is this the time of the Gentiles? When is the earliest that the Great Tribulation can begin? What is the Day of the Lord? Who are the 144,000? Here is a version of the article in the Spanish language: ¿Puede comenzar la Gran Tribulación en 2016 o 2017? ¿Es el Tiempo de los Gentiles? You can also see the English language sermon videos: The Great Tribulation from the Mount of Olives and Can the Great Tribulation begin before 2020? A shorter video is: Will the Great Tribulation Start in 2017?
Anglo – America in Prophecy & the Lost Tribes of Israel Are the Americans, Canadians, English, Scottish, Welsh, Australians, Anglo-Saxon (non-Dutch) Southern Africans, and New Zealanders descendants of Joseph? Where are the lost ten-tribes of Israel? Who are the lost tribes of Israel? What will happen to Jerusalem and the Jews in Israel? Will God punish the U.S.A., Canada, United Kingdom, and other Anglo-Saxon nations? Why might God allow them to be punished first? Here is a link to the Spanish version of this article: Anglo-América & las Tribus Perdidas de Israel. Information is also in the YouTube sermons titled Where are the Ten Lost Tribes? Why does it matter? and British are the Covenant People. A short YouTube of prophetic interest may be Barack Obama and the State of the Apocalypse.
Will the Anglo-Saxon Nations be Divided and Have People Taken as Slaves? Will the lands of the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand be divided? What about Jerusalem? What does Bible prophecy teach? Are there non-biblical prophecies that support this idea? Who will divide those lands? Who will end up with the lands and the people? Here is a link to a video titled Will the USA and other Anglo-nations be Divided and Their People Made Slaves? Here is a related item in the Spanish language ¿Serán divididas las naciones anglosajonas?
Who is the King of the West? Why is there no End-Time King of the West in Bible Prophecy? Is the United States the King of the West?

CGG on prophets and the end times

Friday, September 15th, 2017


Elijah in the wilderness

COGwriter

A reader sent me the following by CGG’s John Ritenbaugh:

Deuteronomy 18:15-18

(15) “The LORD your God will raise up for you a Prophet like me from your midst, from your brethren. Him you shall hear, (16) according to all you desired of the LORD your God in Horeb in the day of the assembly, saying, “Let me not hear again the voice of the LORD my God, nor let me see this great fire anymore, lest I die.” (17) “And the LORD said to me: “What they have spoken is good. (18) I will raise up for them a Prophet like you from among their brethren, and will put My words in His mouth, and He shall speak to them all that I command Him.
New King James Version

All of us desire to know the future so we can be prepared for it. We want to be in control of our destinies and not at the mercy of events. However, some have this desire so strongly that they set themselves up as channels through which the future is revealed.

Such people have misled many. Deuteronomy 18, along with chapter 13, warns against such people. Whether they are called diviners, charmers, spiritists, or channelers, using methods like reading tea leaves, casting lots, or conducting séances, they are to be seriously and carefully avoided because there is no godly reality to their prognostications. Those seeking to know are being misguided, putting themselves at the mercy of lying demons, or at the very least, imaginative men and women.

At other times, simply following a church tradition regarding a prophecy can also mislead a person. This occurs because someone in the past, sincerely believing he understood a particular prophecy, began preaching his belief, and many in his audience then believed without the resources to prove the interpretation wrong. Due to frequent repetition, it came to be accepted as truth.

It is important for us to understand that prophets were not merely temporary and occasional expedients God would turn to. They played a vital and continuing role in Israel, especially in those times before the Word of God was widely distributed. This is why God makes provision for them within the law. He shows in many places that those He appoints to the prophetic office will always preach the keeping of the commandments of God as evidence of the Source of their inspiration. They will teach the conservation of past truths even as they break new doctrinal ground.

They both forthtell – that is, proclaim a message truthfully, clearly, and authoritatively to those for whom it is intended – and they will on occasion, but not always, foretell – that is, predict events before they take place.

It is misleading to believe these verses in Deuteronomy 18 apply only to Christ. His is undoubtedly their ultimate application, but the promise and description applies to all true, God-ordained prophets. Notice some of the identifiers in these verses:

1. God established the foundational pattern for the prophetic office in Moses (“like me”).

2. God will raise a prophet up from among the Israelitish people. Later biblical sources show he might be drawn and appointed from any of the tribes and from any occupation. In other words, he did not have to be a Levite.

3. He will perform the function of a mediator between God and men (verses 16-18).

4. He will stand apart from the system already installed. He will not be antagonistic to the system, but he may be very antagonistic to the sins of those within the system, especially the leadership.

5. God will directly appoint and separate him for his office. Thus, the thrust of his service as God’s representative is direct and authoritative. By contrast, the priest’s function flowed from man to God by means of sacrifice – far less direct and more appealing and pleading than demanding. The New Testament ministry combines elements of both, but parallels the prophet’s function more than the priest’s.

Simply and broadly, a prophet is one who is given a message by another of greater authority and speaks for him to those for whom the message is intended. Thus, Moses was God’s prophet, but Aaron was Moses’ prophet.

Without a doubt, when we hear the word “prophet,” we immediately think of the Old Testament. This is a natural reaction because that is where most of them appear in the Bible. Our memory instantaneously brings forth names like Moses, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and David – all great men. However, without a doubt, the two greatest prophets of all time appear in the New Testament: John the Baptist and Jesus Christ. John the Baptist is the last and greatest under the Old Covenant, and Jesus Christ is the first and greatest of the New.

John W. Ritenbaugh
(The Berean, September 18, 2016)

While I am not intending to analyze all of John Ritenbaugh’s points, the reality is that most real Christians will NOT accept biblical criteria for prophets in this age.

Sadly, many people in the Church of God (COG) have trouble believing that God actually uses prophets or how He would use them today.

But first, it should be noted certain leaders of other COGs have disqualified themselves on certain matters of prophecy, especially when they insist on matters that are wrong, or at best questionable (see Who is the Man of Sin of 2 Thessalonians 2? and Is the Future King of the South Rising Up? and The ‘Peace Deal’ of Daniel 9:27 and The Elijah Heresies and Must the Ten Kings of Revelation 17:12 Rule over Ten Currently Existing Nations? and The Falling Away: The Bible and WCG Teachings).

That being said notice two portions of the New Testament:

27 Now you are the body of Christ, and members individually. 28 And God has appointed these in the church: first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, administrations, varieties of tongues. 29 Are all apostles? Are all prophets? (1 Corinthians 12:27-29)

29 Let two or three prophets speak, and let the others judge. 30 But if anything is revealed to another who sits by, let the first keep silent. 31 For you can all prophesy one by one, that all may learn and all may be encouraged. 32 And the spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets. (1 Corinthians 14:29-33)

6 Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith (Romans 12:6).

The Apostle Paul makes it clear that not all are prophets. Prophet is an office and prophets are to prophesy. Although the position of groups like LCG is that it has NO prophets (which is the case as I stopped attending late on 12/28/12), it should be noted that its then top leader had repeatedly taught in the past that God may consider Bob Thiel to be a prophet (see How To Determine If Someone is a True Prophet of God).

Jesus taught:

11 “Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. 12 Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you. (Matthew 5:11-12)

Contrary to scripture, most end time Christians do not heed the following from the Apostle Paul:

20 Despise not prophesyings. (1 Thessalonians 5:20, KJV)

20 Do not despise prophecies. (1 Thessalonians 5:20, NKJV)

Oh, yes the Laodicean Christians say that they believe biblical prophecies, but they also tend to disbelieve that God has any prophets active today. Hence, in my view, they are despising prophecy.

The fact is that Laodiceans believe that they do not have need to listen to any of God’s end time prophets (Revelation 13:14-18), even if some believe that God uses prophets.

Here is a list of three dozen prophetic errors that various claimed COG groups hold:

  1. Many COG groups (ICG, CGI, UCG, COGaIC, CG7CGG, CEM, etc.) do not officially teach and/or do not believe in the idea of Church eras (The Churches of Revelation 2 & 3), though they sometimes teach about the churches of Revelation.  They tend to take more of a preterist (past) view of those churches, despite the fact that many statements made to them had to have future prophetic ramifications (e.g. Revelation 1:19; 3:3; 3:10). Because of that they do not teach certain prophetic aspects of this, most do not see their own problems and will have to go through the Great Tribulation.
  2. Many COG groups do not believe that the Gospel of the Kingdom still needs to be preached to the world as a witness per Matthew 24:14 (e.g. GCW, PCG), do not really make that a high priority (e.g. COGWA, CGG), or do so in less than truly loving the truth (cf. Jeremiah 48:10; see Why Bob Thiel Left the Living Church of God), hence do not have the real Philadelphian work. As only the Philadelphians are promised to be protected from the hour of trial that will come on the whole world, they will not understand when Matthew 24:14 is fulfilled or when to flee per Matthew 24:15. Hence they do not have or lead the Philadelphian work.  Only the Philadelphians are promised to be protected from the hour of trial that will come on the whole world (see also There is a Place of Safety for the Philadelphians. Why it May Be Petra ).  See also Should the Church Still Try to Place its Top Priority on Proclaiming the Gospel or Did Herbert W. Armstrong Change that Priority for the Work?
  3. At least three groups misunderstand the Gospel and COG doctrines so much (PCG, CGPfK, and RCG) that I question if their top leaders are actually converted members of the COG. Two of those leaders have had major predictions be proven false (CGPFK and RCG).
  4. Many, if not most, COG groups do not realize that the Great Tribulation begins with the King of the North invading the USA. UK, and/or their Anglo-Saxon descended allies (Daniel 11:39; see Who is the King of the North?; see also USA in Prophecy: The Strongest Fortresses).
  5. Many COG groups misunderstand the identity of the King of the South (Daniel 11:40-43), and some have the wrong prophetic sequence regarding the King of the South (see PCG and LCG do not understand the end-time King of the South sequence–do you?). This is not the order that Daniel 11 teaches (see Who is the King of the North?). This view overlooks the fact that since the Great Tribulation is the time of Jacob’s trouble (Jeremiah 30:7), that it begins with the USA and its Anglo-Saxon allies like the United Kingdom getting invaded (cf. Daniel 11:39).  Some of the groups cling to this sequential error, because it was once held by the late Herbert W. Armstrong, who changed his view by 1979 (Armstrong, Herbert W. The Time We Are In, Now. Pastor General’s Report-Vol 1, No. 15, November 20, 1979).  Since the King of the North will eliminate those of the strongest fortresses (the USA, Canada, etc.) in Daniel 11:39, prior to invading the King of the South in Daniel 11:40, those who hold to this view will not know when the Great Tribulation will begin until after it has started.
  6. Some (CEG, GCG-UK) teach that there is no biblically-required King of the South, while at least one group is unsure (CGF-NW)–but this is an error (see also Is the Future King of the South Rising Up?).  This error contributes to other prophetic errors that those groups have.
  7. Some have insisted that the final King of the South will be from the nation of Ethiopia. This is partially based upon a mistranslation in the KJV version of the Bible as well as a position that the late Herbert Armstrong held. However, he changed his position in the 1960s and 1970s to an Arabic-Muslim confederation. Those who insist that the final King of the South must be Ethiopia will not possibly realize that the Great Tribulation will begin until it is too late (RCG once held that position, but later changed it).
  8. Several COG groups (like CGG, RCG, PCG, COGWA) clearly misunderstand Daniel 9:27, the second half of which ties in with Daniel 11:31 and Jesus’ words in Matthew 24:15. Those who misunderstand it will not have a proper pre-warning of what is happening nor likely know when the Great Tribulation will begin. (see also The ‘Peace Deal’ of Daniel 9:27).
  9. Various COG groups (UCG, COGWA, COGaIC, RCG, and CGOM, come to immediate mind, but they are not the only ones) have so many areas of undefined prophecy that they will not know what certain events will mean.  And groups who define matters wrongly will have problems that way as well (PCG and LCG come to immediate mind, but so do nearly all other COG claimed groups).
  10. A couple of groups, such as  Church of God-Preparing for the Kingdom of God and Triumph Prophetic Ministries, have been repeatedly proven wrong about their dates for the start of the Great Tribulation and the return of Jesus Christ.  Those who rely on the leaders of those groups really do not understand biblical prophecy.
  11. Certain groups teach improper interpretations of the 1335, 1290, and 1260 days of Daniel 12 (CGPFK is one) or have other problems with that (most other COG groups) that they will not understand when the Great Tribulation will start. Herbert Armstrong changed his view on this by 1979 and many never understood the change.
  12. Most COG groups fail to understand Habakkuk 2:2-8 and hence are not properly getting the warning out to the USA and UK (see Anglo – America in Prophecy & the Lost Tribes of Israel).  PCG totally misses it, and LCG, while it once would teach it, has backed off because of what appears to be internal politics. The rising ‘time bomb’ of USA debt is something that needs to be pointed out and Habakkuk 2:2-8 points out the biblical threat that this poses. It should be proclaimed and we in CCOG are doing it. Many do not realize that Habakkuk 2:2-8 is related to fleeing and the start of the Great Tribulation, that the time will come when those Philadelphians who understand it in its proper timeframe will flee (see also There is a Place of Safety for the Philadelphians. Why it May Be Petra), and is one of the reasons for the attack against the indebted descendants of the tribes of Joseph.
  13. At least one group (LCG) is no longer certain that France or certain other Israelitish nations will support the Beast power (see Must the Ten Kings of Revelation 17:12 Rule over Ten Currently Existing Nations?). This differs from the position specifically taught by the late Dibar Apartian (see The ‘Lost Tribe’ of Reuben: France in Prophecy?) as well as what the Bible teaches (see Must the Ten Kings of Revelation 17:12 Rule over Ten Currently Existing Nations?). Those who misunderstand this are likely to not possibly realize when the final Beast power has formed.
  14. Many COG groups have various ‘Elijah heresies.’ Because of this, they will not be able to recognize the final Elijah.  Some think it must have been Herbert Armstrong, despite the fact that he has been dead since 1986, and that death disqualifies him according to his writing about that (Mystery of the Ages. 1985, p. 349).  Some think that either there is no Elijah to come or that is the church and not an individual, which goes against Jesus’ teachings on the subject in Mark 9:12-13 (for more details, see The Elijah Heresies).
  15. Many groups do not understand the differing persecutions (and other matters) to come in Daniel 7:25, 11:30-39, Matthew 24:9-22, and Revelation 12:14-17, hence when the prophesied wave of persecution initially hits the Philadelphians primarily (and not them), they will not see this persecution as evidence that the Great Tribulation is about to begin. The old Radio Church of God specifically applied the persecuting scriptures of Daniel 11:32-35 to the end time Philadelphian church (see also Persecutions by Church and State).
  16. Most groups that came out of groups once led by the late Garner Ted Armstrong (ICG, CGI, CEM, etc.) do not seem to teach that there is a physical place of safety (despite what Revelation 12:14-16 teaches), hence they will not be inclined to flee towards one just prior to the start of the Great Tribulation (see also There is a Place of Safety for the Philadelphians. Why it May Be Petra).
  17. Most ‘independents’ do not believe that they need to ‘gather together’ prior to the time to flee despite what Zephaniah 2:1-3 teaches, hence it is not likely they will be inclined to flee together when a group they are not part of does just prior to the start of the Great Tribulation (cf. Revelation 12:14-17; see also There is a Place of Safety for the Philadelphians. Why it May Be Petra).
  18. At least one group (PCG) misunderstands the final Prince of Rosh.  Those who insist on a pre-return of Jesus Christ for the fulfillment of Ezekiel 38 will be disappointed as that is in scriptural error.
  19. At least one COG group (CG7) basically teaches that most of the events of Revelation have already taken place and no one needs to worry about coming persecution.  Jesus warned those of Sardis to be careful about losing the doctrinal understandings they had (Revelation 3:1-6), and this loss of prophetic knowledge proves that those in Sardis will not know when the Great Tribulation will begin.
  20. At least one COG group (LCG) erroneously believes that the abomination of desolation of Daniel 11:31 occurs after the King of the North invades the King of the South (Daniel 11:40-43; see PCG and LCG do not understand the end-time King of the South sequence–do you?). Since this will not happen that way, those who hold to that position will not understand when the Great Tribulation will begin.
  21. At least one group (RCG) totally misunderstands various prophecies in Haggai and Zechariah and expect a type of reunification that is not prophesied.  Those who rely on this and other misinterpretations will not know when the Great Tribulation will begin.
  22. At least one group (LCG) erroneously teaches that the ‘Falling Away’ warned about in 2 Thessalonians 2 has mainly to do with the world and Protestants and not the Church of God (see The Falling Away: The Bible and WCG Teachings).  This improper emphasis seems to be leading to a falling away of certain prophetic understandings for those who hold to it.
  23. Some groups teach (RCG, UCG, COGWA, LCG) that the man of sin who sits in the temple of God (2 Thessalonians 2:3-4) is the Antichrist, not the Beast of the Sea. Yet, it is this Beast of the Sea, the final King of the North (Daniel 11:35-36; see also Who is the Man of Sin?). So, when this happens, those who hold to the wrong position will not understand its prophetic ramifications.  The identity of the ‘son of perdition’ is important to understand in the end times.
  24. At least one group teaches that the ‘man of sin’ is Joseph Tkach, Jr. (PCG).  This absurd position also partially leads to many other misunderstandings.
  25. A few teach that a Jewish temple in Jerusalem must be rebuilt before Jesus returns (CBCG, RCG, COGFF, CEG, and TPM teach this, as do some in LCG). While this is remotely possible, it is not required (the “temple of God” in the New Testament has to do with a Christian, not a modern Jewish, location; see Why is a Jewish Temple in Jerusalem Not Required?). Since this will not happen as a few sometimes teach, those who hold to that position will not understand when the Great Tribulation will begin.
  26. At least two groups (PCG and LCG) teach that the Beast power will consist of 10 or 11 current nations in the European Union (see Must the Ten Kings of Revelation 17:12 Rule over Ten Currently Existing Nations?). The European Union has 28 nation members with several others hoping to join it. And while it may lose nations, the reality is that if the Beast power rises up when there are more than 11 nations in it, those who hold to that position will not understand when the Great Tribulation will begin. Under Herbert Armstrong, the old WCG taught in at least a dozen documents (Plain Truth, Good News, Tomorrow’s World, booklets, Co-worker letter, Bible Correspondence Course) that this passage referred to 10 nations or GROUPS OF NATIONS. Presuming it will be another number of nations, those who insist on 10 or 11 will not realize when the Great Tribulation will begin.
  27. At least one group (CBCG) teaches that the ten kings are to be in charge of ten regions around the world as opposed to being a primarily European power (but it does allow for it). Insistence upon this would mean that such a group could not possibly understand when the Great Tribulation would begin.
  28. None of the Laodicean or Sardis COGs seem to teach that the “strongest fortresses” in Daniel 11:39 refers to the USA–but it does (see also USA in Prophecy: The Strongest Fortresses). Although the evangelists at LCG all agreed I was correct about this, when I checked LCG’s two major websites in 2017, there was no place where LCG teaches this–this is an improper and dangerous error of omission for LCG–and for the other claimed COGs.
  29. At least two groups seem to teach that the first verse in the Daniel 11 sequence relating to the beginning of the Great Tribulation is Daniel 11:40 (LCG does this in its Official Statement of Fundamental Beliefs, whereas PCG does it elsewhere). Instead they should teach that it begins with Daniel 11:39 (see also USA in Prophecy: The Strongest Fortresses), which is shortly after Daniel 11:31, which is also consistent with the start of the time of Jacob’s trouble (Jeremiah 30:7; see also Who is the King of the North?). Those who hold to the Daniel 11:40 position will not understand when the Great Tribulation will begin.
  30. The leader of at least one group (GOI, James Malm) has claimed that the Great Tribulation could begin within a year for the last 6 or so years.  Since this group does not recognize why this is repeatedly in error, it will not truly know when the Great Tribulation will begin.
  31. Some independents and some groups (PCG comes to mind) insist that the late Herbert W. Armstrong was the final ‘Elijah to come’ even though that contradicts scripture and Herbert Armstrong’s own writings (see The Elijah Heresies).
  32. Leaders of at least two groups (CGPFK and RCG), who once insisted publicly that Herbert Armstrong must be the final Elijah, now falsely claim that they hold that role.
  33. Some groups either do not believe there is an Elijah to come (CGI comes to mind) or do not believe he needs to be a person (LCG comes to mind).
  34. At least one group has confused the final Elijah with the return of Jesus (LCG comes to mind).
  35. At least one group has publicly claimed that God has no prophets today and will not have any until the two witnesses are empowered (LCG comes to mind). This downplays how God works (cf. Ephesians 2:20) and that the Bible teaches, “Surely the Lord God does nothing, Unless He reveals His secret to His servants the prophets” (Amos 3:7) (see also How To Determine If Someone is a True Prophet of God).
  36. At least one group (CGG) teaches that the Beast power is not European.  Since the Beast power will arise in Europe, those who do not understand this will not realize when the Great Tribulation is about to begin (see also Europa, the Beast, and the Book of Revelation).
  37. At least one group (LCG) teaches that the European Union will collapse like the old Roman Empire. But the lessons of history and the Bible contradict that (details are in the article Must the Ten Kings of Revelation 17:12 Rule over Ten Currently Existing Nations?).
  38. At least two groups (BICOG and TPM) have taught that a US president (like former president Barack Obama) is the King of the North or could be the Antichrist.

Some will come up with their preferred rationale as why not to agree with the position of the Continuing Church of God (CCOG) on these matters. Yet not only are they biblical, on most of those points, the old WCG taught what I believe that the Bible teaches on them.

It should be noted that leaders in the Living Church of God and/or the United Church of God confirmed to me personally that I was biblically correct on essentially all the above points, despite the fact that their respective churches hold to several of the errors pointed out above. Those who rely too much on a compromised ministry (Ezekiel 34:7-10) to teach them prophecy that is not truly in accordance with scripture need to realize that according to Jesus’ words in Revelation 2 & 3 and Luke 21, only relatively few Christians will be protected from the hour of trial that will come upon the whole world (Revelation 3:10; see also There is a Place of Safety for the Philadelphians. Why it May Be Petra).

It astounds me how many in the COGs hold to criteria for prophets that are not biblical. To learn what they are, check out the article How To Determine If Someone is a True Prophet of God.

Of course, most did not believe the great prophet John the Baptist (Luke 28:33) nor that Jesus was the Christ (Luke 28:34), as most of the people then had different criteria than God set (cf. Luke 28:35).

What about you?

Some items of possibly related interest may include:

How To Determine If Someone is a True Prophet of God There are many false prophets, yet many overlook what the Bible teaches about how to recognize a true one. How can Christians determine who is a true prophet? This article contains a scripture-based checklist to assist with this determination.
How to determine if someone is a true prophet of God This is a sermon on YouTube addressing a subject that most in the Church of God do not seem to have looked into very much. It discusses scriptures and dispels some improper assertions that some associated with the COG have made about prophets in this time.
The Elijah Heresies Does the Bible teach that there will be a future Elijah? Must it be Herbert W. Armstrong? Two related sermons are available Elijah: Prophecies and Heresies and Elijah, Herbert W. Armstrong, and CCOG.
Why Be Concerned About False and Heretical Leaders? There have been many false leaders–here is some of why you should be concerned about them.
There is a Place of Safety for the Philadelphians. Why it May Be Petra This article discusses a biblical ‘place of safety’ and includes quotes from the Bible and Herbert W. Armstrong on this subject–thus, there is a biblically supported alternative to the rapture theory. There is also a video on the subject: Might Petra be the Place of Safety? Here is something related in the Spanish language: Hay un lugar de seguridad para los Filadelfinos. ¿Puede ser Petra?
When Will the Great Tribulation Begin? 2016, 2017, or 2018? Can the Great Tribulation begin today? What happens before the Great Tribulation in the “beginning of sorrows”? What happens in the Great Tribulation and the Day of the Lord? Is this the time of the Gentiles? When is the earliest that the Great Tribulation can begin? What is the Day of the Lord? Who are the 144,000? Here is a version of the article in the Spanish language: ¿Puede comenzar la Gran Tribulación en 2016 o 2017? ¿Es el Tiempo de los Gentiles? You can also see the English language sermon videos: The Great Tribulation from the Mount of Olives and Can the Great Tribulation begin before 2020? A shorter video is: Can the Great Tribulation Start in 2016?
Who Are The Two Witnesses? What is their job? What does the Bible reveal? What has the Church of God taught on this subject? Might even Roman Catholic prophecies give some clues here?
The Final Phase of the Work What is the final phase of the work? Who will lead it? Do you have the courage to support it? Here is a related YouTube video titled The Final Phase of the Work. The written article has been translated into Spanish La Fase Final de la Obra.
Where is the True Christian Church Today? This free online pdf booklet answers that question and includes 18 proofs, clues, and signs to identify the true vs. false Christian church. Plus 7 proofs, clues, and signs to help identify Laodicean churches. A related sermon is also available: Where is the True Christian Church? Here is a link to the booklet in the Spanish language: ¿Dónde está la verdadera Iglesia cristiana de hoy?
Continuing History of the Church of God This pdf booklet is a historical overview of the true Church of God and some of its main opponents from Acts 2 to the 21st century. Related sermon links include Continuing History of the Church of God: c. 31 to c. 300 A.D. and Continuing History of the Church of God: 4th-16th Centuries and Continuing History of the Church of God: 17th-20th Centuries. The booklet is available in Spanish: Continuación de la Historia de la Iglesia de Dios, German: Kontinuierliche Geschichte der Kirche Gottes, French: L Histoire Continue de l Église de Dieu and Ekegusii Omogano Bw’ekanisa Ya Nyasae Egendererete.
CCOG.ORG Continuing Church of God The group striving to be most faithful amongst all real Christian groups to the word of God. To see how CCOG has done so far, here are links to two sermons Continuing Church of God (CCOG) first year anniversary: What has been accomplished? and CCOG: Four Years Revealing Philadelphia? Here is a written link to a version of that first sermon in the Spanish language: Aniversario del primer año de la Continuación de la Iglesia de Dios: ¿Qué se ha cumplido?
Behind the Work: Go Therefore and Make Disciples How is the Continuing Church of God making disciples. What has been happening in the Continuing Church of God related to this and aspects of the final phase of the work. This ‘behind the work’ video shows New Zealand, Africa, Jerusalem, Vatican City, the USA, and the United Kingdom as well as one from Asia. Teaching and baptisms are shown.
CCOG.ASIA We in the Continuing Church of God also have the url www.ccog.asia which has a focus on Asia and has various articles in Mandarin Chinese as well as some in English, plus some items in other Asian languages. 我们在继续神的教会也提供此网址 www.ccog.asia, 关注于亚洲并且有各种各样的中英文文章,其中一些用菲律宾语翻译的文章也正在进行中,准备添加到这个网站中。 Here is a link to our Statement of Beliefs in Mandarin Chinese 继续神的教会的信仰声明.
CCOG.IN This is a website targeted towards those of Indian heritage. It has a link to an edited Hindi translation of The Mystery of the Ages and is expected to have more non-English language materials in the future.
CCOG.EU This is a website targeted toward Europe. It has materials in more than one language (currently it has English, Dutch, and Serbian, with links also to Spanish) and it is intended to have additional language materials added.
CCOG.NZ This is a website targeted towards New Zealand and others with a British-descended background.
CCOGAFRICA.ORG This is a website targeted towards those in Africa.
CCOGCANADA.CA This is a website targeted towards those in Canada.
CDLIDD.ES La Continuación de la Iglesia de Dios. This is the Spanish language website for the Continuing Church of God.
PNIND.PH Patuloy na Iglesya ng Diyos. This is the Philippines website Continuing Church of God. It has information in English and Tagalog.

Sermon: Should Christians keep the Fall Holy Days?

Saturday, September 9th, 2017


COGwriter

The Continuing Church of God is pleased to announce this sermon from its ContinuingCOG channel:

1:14:22

Most who profess Christ do not keep the Holy Days in the Bible. Why is that? Should they? What does the Bible teach? The Fall Holy Days are the Feast of Trumpets, Day of Atonement, Feast of Tabernacles, and the Last Great Day? Why do some think that they should be observed by Christians? Did early Christians keep the Fall Holy Days or were they too Jewish? What do these days represent? Do they have anything to do with God’s plan of salvation? Are non-biblical religious holidays enjoined on Christians? What did Jesus, Paul, and Polycarp do? What should you do?

Here is a link to the sermon: Should Christians keep the Fall Biblical Holy Days?

Some items of related interest may include:

Did Early Christians Observe the Fall Holy Days? The ‘Fall’ Holy Days come every year in September and/or October on the Roman calendar. Some call them Jewish holidays, but they were kept by Jesus, the apostles, and their early faithful followers. Should you keep them? What does the Bible teach? What do records of church history teach? What does the Bible teach about the Feasts of Trumpets, Atonement, Tabernacles, and the Last Great Day? Here is a link to a related sermon: Should Christians keep the Fall Biblical Holy Days?
The Book of Life and the Feast of Trumpets? Are they related? Is so how? If not, where not? What does the Feast of Trumpets, which the Jews call Rosh Hashanah, help teach? Related sermon videos include: The Last Trumpet and the Book of Life and The Trumpet Release. The article has links to hear shofar blasts.
Feast of Trumpets: Why Should You Keep It? What does the Bible say? What does this festival picture? A related sermon is available: The Trumpet Warnings.
The Day of Atonement–Its Christian Significance The Jews call it Yom Kippur, Christians “The Day of Atonement.” Does it have any relevance for Christians today? What is the Jubilee? Is fasting healthy? Here is a link to a sermon: Christians, the Day of Atonement, and Fasting; here is another sermon: Day of Atonement: How Jesus fulfilled His part for the Atonement. Here is a link to a related article in the Spanish language: El Día de Expiación Su significado cristiano.
The Atonement Plan How does the Day of Atonement tie into God’s plan of salvation? A sermon of related interest is titled God’s Atonement Plan.
The Feast of Tabernacles: A Time for Christians? Is this pilgrimage holy day still valid? Does it teach anything relevant for today’s Christians? What is the Last Great Day? What do these days teach? A related sermon video is Feast of Tabernacles from Israel.
The Last Great Day: Shemini ‘Azeret What is the ‘eighth day’ of the Feast? What does it help picture? A sermon on this topic is also available: Shemini Azaret: The Last Great Day.
Christians are to Be Strangers and Pilgrims? Should Christians sojourn? What does the Bible and Feast of Tabernacles teach? A related video sermon is titled Christian Pilgrims.
The Feast of Tabernacles: A Time to Learn the Law The Bible teaches that every seven years that the law should be read at the Feast of Tabernacles. This is what I did at the first Feast site were I gave an actual sermon (as opposed to a sermonette) in 2006.
Feast of Tabernacles’ Sites for 2017 This is information on the Feast of Tabernacles’ sites for the Continuing Church of God in 2017. The Feast in 2017 Services will begin the evening of October 4th.
Should You Observe God’s Holy Days or Demonic Holidays? This is a free pdf booklet explaining what the Bible and history shows about God’s Holy Days and popular holidays. A related sermon is Which Spring Days should Christians observe?
How to Keep God’s Festivals Many have heard of God’s Holy Days and wonder how they are kept in the 21st century. This is an overview article. A related sermon is also available titled: How to Keep God’s Feasts.
The Gospel of the Kingdom of God This free online pdf booklet has answers many questions people have about the Gospel of the Kingdom of God and explains why it is the solution to the issues the world is facing. Here are links to three related sermons: The World’s False Gospel, The Gospel of the Kingdom: From the New and Old Testaments, and The Kingdom of God is the Solution.

Where is the True Christian Church Today? This free online pdf booklet answers that question and includes 18 proofs, clues, and signs to identify the true vs. false Christian church. Plus 7 proofs, clues, and signs to help identify Laodicean churches. A related sermon is also available: Where is the True Christian Church? Here is a link to the booklet in the Spanish language: ¿Dónde está la verdadera Iglesia cristiana de hoy? Here is a link in the German language: WO IST DIE WAHRE CHRISTLICHE KIRCHE HEUTE? Here is a link in the French language: Où est la vraie Église Chrétienne aujourd’hui?
Continuing History of the Church of God This pdf booklet is a historical overview of the true Church of God and some of its main opponents from Acts 2 to the 21st century. Related sermon links include Continuing History of the Church of God: c. 31 to c. 300 A.D. and Continuing History of the Church of God: 4th-16th Centuries and Continuing History of the Church of God: 17th-20th Centuries. The booklet is available in Spanish: Continuación de la Historia de la Iglesia de Dios, German: Kontinuierliche Geschichte der Kirche Gottes, and Ekegusii Omogano Bw’ekanisa Ya Nyasae Egendererete.
CCOG.ORG Continuing Church of God The group striving to be most faithful amongst all real Christian groups to the word of God. To see how CCOG has done so far, here are links to two sermons Continuing Church of God (CCOG) first year anniversary: What has been accomplished? and The Continuing Church of God: Two Years of Proclamation. Here is a written link to a version of that sermon in the Spanish language: Aniversario del primer año de la Continuación de la Iglesia de Dios: ¿Qué se ha cumplido?
Congregations of the Continuing Church of God This is a listing of congregations and groups of the Continuing Church of God around the world.
CCOG.ASIA We in the Continuing Church of God also have the url www.ccog.asia which has a focus on Asia and has various articles in Mandarin Chinese as well as some in English, plus some items in other Asian languages. 我们在继续神的教会也提供此网址 www.ccog.asia, 关注于亚洲并且有各种各样的中英文文章,其中一些用菲律宾语翻译的文章也正在进行中,准备添加到这个网站中。 Here is a link to our Statement of Beliefs in Mandarin Chinese 继续神的教会的信仰声明.
CCOG.IN This is a website targeted towards those of Indian heritage. It has a link to an edited Hindi translation of The Mystery of the Ages and is expected to have more non-English language materials in the future.
CCOG.EU This is a website targeted toward Europe. It has materials in more than one language (currently it has English, Dutch, and Serbian, with links also to Spanish) and it is intended to have additional language materials added.
CCOG.NZ This is a website targeted towards New Zealand and others with a British-descended background.
CCOGAFRICA.ORG This is a website targeted towards those in Africa.
CCOGCANADA.CA This is a website targeted towards those in Canada.
CDLIDD.ES La Continuación de la Iglesia de Dios. This is the Spanish language website for the Continuing Church of God.
PNIND.PH Patuloy na Iglesya ng Diyos. This is the Philippines website Continuing Church of God. It has information in English and Tagalog.
CCOGAfrica channel. This has messages from African pastors in African languages such as Kalenjin, Kiswahili, Embu, and Dholuo.
Bible News Prophecy online radio. This is an audio version of the Bible News Prophecy videos as well as some ContinuingCOG channel sermons. It is also available as a mobile app.
ContinuingCOG channel. Dr. Thiel has produced scores of YouTube video sermons for this channel. Note: Since these are sermon-length, they can take a little longer to load than other YouTube videos.

NFL 2017: Should Christians watch?

Thursday, September 7th, 2017

COGwriter

The National Football League (NFL) is scheduled to begin its official season for this violent and harmful sport today with the Kickoff Game at 8:30 p.m. EDT.

A reader sent me the following from columnist George Will:

Autumn, which is bearing down upon us like a menacing linebacker, is, as John Keats said, a season of mists and mellow fruitfulness and chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). Actually, Keats, a romantic, did not mention that last part. He died before the birth of the subject of a waning American romance, football. This sport will never die but it will never again be, as it was until recently, the subject of uncomplicated national enthusiasm.

CTE is a degenerative brain disease confirmable only after death, and often caused by repeated blows to the head that knock the brain against the skull. The cumulative impacts of hundreds of supposedly minor blows can have the cumulative effect of many concussions. The New York Times recently reported Stanford researchers’ data showing “that one college offensive lineman sustained 62 of these hits in a single game. Each one came with an average force on the player’s head equivalent to what you would see if he had driven his car into a brick wall at 30 mph.”

Boston University researchers found CTE in 110 of 111 brains of deceased NFL players. In 53 other brains from college players, 48 had CTE. There was significant selection bias: Many of the brains came from families who had noticed CTE symptoms, including mood disorders and dementia. A BU researcher says, however, that a 10-year NFL linebacker could receive more than 15,000 sub-concussive blows.

Football’s kinetic energy — a function of the masses and velocities of the hurtling bodies — has increased dramatically in 50 years.

Autumn, which is bearing down upon us like a menacing linebacker, is, as John Keats said, a season of mists and mellow fruitfulness and chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). Actually, Keats, a romantic, did not mention that last part. He died before the birth of the subject of a waning American romance, football. This sport will never die but it will never again be, as it was until recently, the subject of uncomplicated national enthusiasm.

CTE is a degenerative brain disease confirmable only after death, and often caused by repeated blows to the head that knock the brain against the skull. The cumulative impacts of hundreds of supposedly minor blows can have the cumulative effect of many concussions. The New York Times recently reported Stanford researchers’ data showing “that one college offensive lineman sustained 62 of these hits in a single game. Each one came with an average force on the player’s head equivalent to what you would see if he had driven his car into a brick wall at 30 mph.”

Boston University researchers found CTE in 110 of 111 brains of deceased NFL players. In 53 other brains from college players, 48 had CTE. There was significant selection bias: Many of the brains came from families who had noticed CTE symptoms, including mood disorders and dementia. A BU researcher says, however, that a 10-year NFL linebacker could receive more than 15,000 sub-concussive blows.

Football’s kinetic energy — a function of the masses and velocities of the hurtling bodies — has increased dramatically in 50 years. 09/02/17 https://www.news-journal.com/news/2017/sep/02/will-footballs-enjoyment-is-on-a-fade-pattern/

Many non-Philadelphian Christians do not wish to seriously consider that American football is harmful, despite the facts, and would prefer that I not post about it.

The Bible suggests otherwise:

1 Cry aloud, spare not;
Lift up your voice like a trumpet;
Tell My people their transgression,
And the house of Jacob their sins. (Isaiah 58:1)

The reality is that American tackle football is evil–the players get harmed. This really is not debatable as it is an established fact.

ABC reported the following:

“Football is not a contact sport, it’s a collision sport.”

These words, spoken by legendary football coach Vince Lombardi, have taken on new meaning in the last decade after several recent studies have revealed a link between the repeated collisions for which the game is known and a progressive brain disease called chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE.

Now, a new report from researchers at Boston University suggests that this often devastating neurological disease may be even more common to the sport than previously thought.

In the largest study of its kind to date, researchers examined the brains of 202 deceased football players –- ranging from high school to professional levels –- to look for tell-tale signs of CTE, a diagnosis that can only be made after an autopsy. A full 87 percent of these ex-players had evidence of CTE. The proportion was highest in professional players; of the 111 former NFL pros included in the study, 110 met the criteria for a CTE diagnosis.

But the study’s lead author, Dr. Ann C. McKee, said that one of the most alarming findings is that nearly one quarter of the 14 high school players in the study had CTE. July 25, 2017 http://abcnews.go.com/Health/111-pro-football-players-brain-injury-cte-study/story?id=48838098

So, nearly everyone who plays tackle football long enough ends up with brain injury.

Clearly, with any who have eyes to see, the fruits of this ‘sport’ are evil.

Over the years, I have seemingly stood alone among Church of God leaders in the 21st century warning against American tackle football. I first spoke against it at the old Spokesman’s Club in the Worldwide Church of God last century. And, when I brought the subject up in the Living Church of God, it made many uncomfortable enough to take steps leading to my departure from that group.

There is no doubt that American tackle football is dangerous to health. While some in the world consider watching it to be an ‘ethical uncertainty,’ true Philadelphia Christians (as well as many who are not) realize that something about this sport is physically harmful and should not be encouraged.

On a ‘Here’s Lucy’ show from 1972, Joe Namath told Lucille Ball that although football was tough, he inaccurately claimed that the physical damage was temporary and was nothing to worry about as the body heals. But he was later in the news related to what happened to him:

The picture of Joe Namath forgetting why he had just walked into a particular room or losing his keys is a sad one, but one we’ve come to expect for retired NFL players. That’s how an ESPN.com feature about the 72-year-old Hall of Fame quarterback starts, detailing how he also struggled with depression and fears he has brain damage from the many blows he’s taken in his career. …

There’s also this detail about how Namath used to take his painkillers with liquor:

“Doctors routinely treated his pain with Percocet and Butazolidin, an anti-inflammatory typically used on horses. They told him to take the medications on a full stomach; concerned about staying in shape, Namath washed them down with Johnnie Walker Red instead. [Later, he switched to vodka.]” https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/early-lead/wp/2015/07/14/joe-namath-thinks-he-has-brain-damage-but-is-sold-on-unconventional-treatment/

Joe Namath is the latest former NFL player who has admitted the concussions he suffered during his career have had negative, long-lasting effects.

Namath, famous for guaranteeing the Jets’ Super Bowl victory in 1969 and then going out and backing up his words with a shocking takedown of the heavily favored Colts, told “CBS Sunday Morning” in an upcoming interview head injuries sustained during his playing career have adversely affected his health. http://nypost.com/2014/01/31/broadway-joe-namath-i-have-brain-damage/

Joe Namath indicated that the alternative therapy known as hyperbaric oxygen has helped him. But he still was damaged by playing tackle football.

Many people do not want to believe the truth about America tackle football. Consider also the following:

The famed forensic pathologist who discovered a deadly brain disease impacting several former National Football League players inspired Tyler leaders on Tuesday.

Dr. Bennet Omalu, portrayed by Will Smith in the film “Concussion,” was the keynote speaker at the Leadership Live 2016 event at Green Acres Baptist Church’s Crosswalk Conference Center.

He spoke about 40 minutes on the importance of self-love, truth and embracing everyone’s humanity.

“Dr. Omalu is an exceptional example of leadership in the face of adversity,” Smittee Root, executive director of Leadership Tyler, said. “His story has the ability to inspire not only the fresh faces of Tyler, but the seasoned leaders of our community.”

In recent years, he’s faced rejection and was condemned by some doctors and the NFL due to his findings about chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE. Despite the turmoil, he kept fighting for the truth, he said.

“No university, no research organization would open doors to me,” Omalu said.

“I lost it all. I lost everything I had. I lost my job. I was unemployed for six months.”

I still held onto the light of the truth.”

Omalu attributes the backlash to what he calls conformational intelligence. He said in society, people tend to accept what has been known as fact, even when new evidence is produced. http://www.tylerpaper.com/TP-News+Local/240159/famed-doctor-bennet-omalu-who-discovered-degenerative-brain-disease-in-athletes-inspires-tyler-leaders

The TRUTH is that the fruits of American tackle football are not good. But many do not care.

Let me state that there is a human tendency to try to justify sin. Many think if something feels right to them, it must be. According to the Bible, that is a wrong attitude:

9 “The heart is deceitful above all things,
And desperately wicked;
Who can know it?
10 I, the Lord, search the heart,
I test the mind,
Even to give every man according to his ways,
According to the fruit of his doings. (Jeremiah 17:9-10)

Those who claim that encouraging American tackle football is fine are NOT Philadelphian Christians–they are deceiving themselves since American tackle football causes real damage. Damage that should not be encouraged.

After a post I made before about American football (see Should Christians watch American football?), a reader sent me an email, that in part stated:

Hello Dr. Thiel,
It took a while, but your recent article “Should Americans Watch Football?” finally convinced me the answer is “NO”. I can see why I stubbornly held out. I think it is ADDICTION that causes football lovers to cover their eyes from the truth. Who can deny the thrill and ectasy of cheering on our super talented sports heroes and winning teams. Who can give up the hamburgers, hot dogs , potato chips, soda and beer along with it? I admit I have been a big sports addict especially to American football!
Well, what turned me off the most was the Super Bowl ads on t.v. years ago. I started refusing to watch the Super Bowl with my family (it was too embarrassing) or with church friends.

From the violence on the field, to the under-clothed cheerleaders, to some of the half-time antics, there is a lot wrong with American football.

Jesus taught not to intentionally hurt others, as it taught:

39… ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ (Matthew 22:39, NKJV)

The Apostle Paul also wrote:

29 For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it (Ephesians 5:29, NKJV)

Also, notice what John the Baptist taught soldiers:

14 And the soldiers likewise demanded of him, saying, And what shall we do? And he said unto them, Do violence to no man, neither accuse any falsely; and be content with your wages. (Luke 3:14, KJV)

I could not reconcile loving my neighbor as myself and cherishing my flesh and not doing violence to any man by watching others do it in a football game. Consider also the following:

9…You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” 10 Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law. (Romans 13:9-10)

Jesus also said:

20 For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. 21 But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God. (John 3:20-21, NKJV).

Is watching American football a deed that would be pleasing to God?

The Apostle Paul wrote:

12… they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.(2 Thessalonians 2:12)

29 … they are whisperers, 30 backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, 31 undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful; 32 who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them. (Romans 1:28-32, NKJV)

Is not football violent and often unmerciful?

So, if playing football is evil, should Christians approve of it?

Additionally, twice the New Testament refers to the good news message as “the gospel of peace”:

15 “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the gospel of peace, Who bring glad tidings of good things!” (Romans 10:15)

14 Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; (Ephesians 6:14-15)

Is not taking a stand against encouraging sports violence consistent with the gospel of peace and love? Or should ministers tell people that violent sports like American tackle football are not “inherently evil” as at least one minister from LCG has done?

While “love does no harm to a neighbor” (Romans 13:9), what do sports like American football and boxing do? Should Bible believers encourage this?

Unlike stories of violence in books or movies, American football involves actual violence and often physical injury–including brain damaging ones that are often not obvious for years.

The Bible forbids harming others or encouraging sin. Early professors of Christ would not watch violent games as they felt that watching was encouraging and participating in sin. The late WCG Pastor-General Herbert W. Armstrong categorized American football as evil.

You may be telling yourself, well since my church does not (presuming you do not support a group like the Continuing Church of God which does) condemn football (and/or possibly encourages it) the Bible really does not apply here. If so, be careful about accepting that type of tradition. Jesus Himself taught:

7 Hypocrites! Well did Isaiah prophesy about you, saying:

8 “These people draw near to Me with their mouth,
And honor Me with their lips,
But their heart is far from Me.
9 And in vain they worship Me,
Teaching as doctrines the commandments of men. (Matthew 15:7-9)

14 “And to the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write,

‘These things says the Amen, the Faithful and True Witness, the Beginning of the creation of God: 15 “I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot. 16 So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth. 17 Because you say, ‘I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing’ — and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked — 18 I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see. 19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent. (Revelation 3:14-19)

I do not watch American football. I consider that it is evil (also, no Christian can really defend how professional football cheerleading females are often publicly dressed and displayed). Others want to falsely act like there is nothing wrong with watching it.

Some may not wish to hear about any of the evils of violent sports, and instead prefer smooth things, but hopefully I have tried to follow the Apostle Paul who declared:

26 Therefore I testify to you this day that I am innocent of the blood of all men. 27 For I have not shunned to declare to you the whole counsel of God. (Acts 20:26-27)

The bodies and blood of those who engage in violent sports is important. It does not show Philadelphia love.

Regarding American football, do you believe that Jesus or the Apostle Paul would endorse it? This is something that Christians, and those that claim to be, should think and pray about.

Those Laodicean Christians who are fans of American tackle football are NOT Philadelphians and will be subject to violence themselves as they will have to go through the Great Tribulation if they do not repent (Revelation 3:14-22).

Encouraging violence in sports does not show brotherly/philadelphian love.

Philadelphian Christians do not watch American tackle football–whether the USA or Canadian version of it.

For more scriptures, as well as the position of early Christians and others, please see the following:

Is American Football Evil? Is the most popular spectator sport in the USA something that Christians should watch? What do the Bible and early writings show? There is also a YouTube video available titled Should Christians watch American football?
Military Service and the Churches of God: Do Real Christians Participate in Carnal Warfare or Encourage Violence? Here are current and historical perspectives on a matter which show the beliefs of the true church on military participation. Is war proper for Christians? A related sermon would be: Christians, Violence, and Military Service.
Pornography: A scourge on society Is pornography harmless fun? Does the Bible teach anything about it? What are the views of some involved with it? Here is a link to a YouTube video Pornography: Harmless Fun or a Scourge on Society?
British and American Moral Decay Public nudity is becoming more prevalent in the Anglo-lands. What are some of the consequences?
The Philadelphia Church Era was predominant circa 1933 A.D. to 1986 A.D. The old Radio Church of God and old Worldwide Church of God, now the remnant of that era is basically the most faithful in the Church of God, like who hold to the beliefs and practices of the Continuing Church of God.
The Laodicean Church Era has been predominant circa 1986 A.D. to present. The Laodiceans are non-Philadelphians who mainly descended from the old WCG or its offshoots. They do not properly understand the work or biblical prophecies and will face the Great Tribulation if they do not repent.

‘California bill seeks to punish ‘misgendering’ with jail time’

Saturday, September 2nd, 2017

COGwriter

The State of California wants to consider jailing people who do not speak according to bizarre pronoun preferences :

California bill seeks to punish ‘misgendering’ with jail time

September 2, 2017

A new bill in California would punish the ‘misgendering’ of nursing home and long-term care patients with hefty fines and even jail time.

In February, state senator Scott Wiener introduced SB 219, the “Long-term care facilities: rights of residents” bill, which has already been passed by California’s state senate. After being recommended by the state assembly’s judiciary committee, the bill will now be considered by the California House of Representatives.

If passed into law, the policy would punish nursing home and long-term care workers who refuse to call patients by their preferred pronouns with fines of up to $1,000, or jail time for up to a year, or both.

Besides compelling workers to refer to residents by their preferred pronouns, the bill would also mandate that facilities allow residents room assignments and bathroom preferences based on gender identity rather than biological sex.

Ned Dolejsi, executive director of the California Catholic Conference, told CNA that the bill could unjustly target religious facilities and place excessive burden on an already-heavily regulated industry.

“It would potentially compromise some of the institutions that are religiously sponsored and would not want to be supportive” of gender identity room or bathroom assignments, he said. …

Greg Burt, with the California Family Council, testified against SB 219 in July, noting that it would infringe on the First Amendment rights of workers by compelling them to use speech with which they might not agree.

“How can you believe in free speech, but think the government can compel people to use certain pronouns when talking to others?” Burt asked members of the Assembly Judiciary Committee during his testimony.

“Compelled speech is not free speech. Can the government compel a newspaper to use certain pronouns that aren’t even in the dictionary? Of course not, or is that coming next?”

Burt also denounced the bill for lacking any religious exemptions for religiously-affiliated institutions.

“Those proposing this bill are saying, ‘If you disagree with me about my view of gender, you are discriminating against me’,” Burt testified. “This is not tolerance. This is not love. This is not mutual respect… True tolerance, tolerates people with different views. We need to treat each other with respect, but respect is a two-way street. It is not respectful to threaten people with punishment for having sincerely held beliefs that differ from your own.”

I have written against this proposed bill before (see Protests at ‘freedom of speech’ rally; California considering law to penalize selective pronoun speech). Also, here is a link to the full text of SB-219 for those who want more official details.

Greg Burt referred to the first amendment to the US Constitution. Here it is:

  • First amendment — Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

SB-219 is an affront to both freedom of religion and freedom of speech. It also essentially requires changing the meaning of words in the English language to some bizarre gender identity invention.

The Apostle Paul warned:

28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting; 29 being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; they are whisperers, 30 backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, 31 undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful; 32 who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them. (Romans 1:28-32)

SB-219 is not only a speech and religious restriction, it violates common sense and is an evil invention. One’s genitalia determines one’s sex/gender. The English language pronouns were intended to convey that, not some ‘transgender’ preferences. These type of facilities have many employees, and to expect them all to remember inaccurate personal pronouns or face prosecution is absurd.

Perhaps it should be pointed out that there are also more biological differences between males and females than genitalia:

A biological male can take hormones, surgically alter his body and identify as “female,” but the procedures still won’t make him a woman, according to new evidence found by Israeli researchers.

That’s because there are at least 6,500 genes that contain sex-specific instructions for males and females.

For the study by Israel’s Weizmann Institute of Science, professor Shmuel Pietrokovski and Dr. Moran Gershoni, both researchers from the institute’s Molecular Genetics Department, “looked closely at around 20,000 protein-coding genes, sorting them by sex and searching for differences in expression in each tissue. They eventually identified around 6,500 genes with activity that was biased toward one sex or the other in at least one tissue, adding to the already major biological differences between men and women.” …

The new findings are further evidence that biological males cannot simply “transition” into females and vice versa, argues Mat Staver, founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel.

“This recent study from Israel’s Weizmann Institute of Science further proves that you cannot fool Mother Nature,” Staver said. “The saying, ‘I think, therefore, I am’ is best left to philosophy and not science. Gender confusion is mental, not physical or biological. God made male and female, and no amount of protestation will change the natural created order.”

Staver called the idea that a person can choose his or her gender “fiction.”

“These Israeli scientists identified over 6,500 genes with activity that was biased toward one sex or the other in at least one tissue,” he said. “That clearly validates the genetic differences between men and women.” 4 May 2017 http://www.wnd.com/2017/05/study-more-proof-a-man-can-never-become-a-woman/

Of course, many ‘moderns’ want to act like there is no difference, but the Bible is clear that men and women are different. God warned that there would be those “who suppress the truth in unrighteousness” (Romans 1:18). But the truth is still the truth.

This proposed California pronoun bill brought the following scriptures to mind:

20 Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil;
Who put darkness for light, and light for darkness;
Who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!

21 Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes,
And prudent in their own sight! (Isaiah 5:20-21)

33 For God is not the author of confusion but of peace (1 Corinthians 14:33)

It is not good to encourage gender confusion. SB-219 will not really help those who want to be considered as transgender.

As far as freedom of speech about such matters, consider that the Bible teaches:

1 Cry aloud, spare not;
Lift up your voice like a trumpet;
Tell My people their transgression,
And the house of Jacob their sins. (Isaiah 58:1)

SB-219 is sinful.

The time of Jacob’s trouble (Jeremiah 30:7), also known as the Great Tribulation (Matthew 24:21), is coming and the USA and its Anglo-Saxon allies (including Canada) will be affected.

National repentance is the only way to prevent it, and that does not look likely. The advocacy of homosexuality and abortion, and increased indebtedness and acceptance of various forms of pornography (including what would be considered soft pornography involving the current ‘first lady’ of the USA) that we have seen the past few years suggests that national repentance is about the furthest thing on the minds of the national political leaders and most of the mainstream media in the USA.

Personal repentance, however, is still possible. If you are an American, your personal future can still be much brighter than that of your country.

Notice that the Bible tells of a time that will come when the word of God will not be found (Amos 8:11-12). I do not believe that this means that there will be no more Bibles–but that those wanting to better understand it will have trouble finding explanations and there will be governmental restrictions related to teaching what the Bible teaches.

We are seeing more of this now–it will intensify (cf. Revelation 13:16-18).

That is part of why we in the Continuing Church of God are preparing for the ‘short work’ (Romans 9:28) and the coming ‘famine of the word.’

Consider, however, that Jesus said:

4 I must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day; the night is coming when no one can work. (John 9:4)

Philadelphian Christians want to respond to the doors that Christ opens to proclaim the gospel (2 Corinthians 2:12; 1 Corinthians 16:8-9; Colossians 4:2-4) and do the work. We will stand up for the truth, despite realizing that the ‘famine of the word’ that the prophet Amos referred to is coming. We must do the work and persevere to the end–despite government restrictions and protesters.

Some items of possibly related interest may include:

Christian Repentance Do you know what repentance is? Is it really necessary for salvation? A related sermon is also available titled: Real Christian Repentance.
Preparing for the ‘Short Work’ and The Famine of the Word What is the ‘short work’ of Romans 9:28? Who is preparing for it? Here is a link to a related video sermon titled: The Short Work.
Should the Church Still Try to Place its Top Priority on Proclaiming the Gospel or Did Herbert W. Armstrong Change that Priority for the Work? Some say the Church should mainly feed the flock now as that is what Herbert W. Armstrong reportedly said. Is that what he said? Is that what the Bible says? What did Paul and Herbert W. Armstrong expect from lower level leaders? A related sermon is available titled Priority of the Philadelphia Work.
Persecutions by Church and State This article documents some that have occurred against those associated with the COGs and some prophesied to occur. Will those with the cross be the persecutors or the persecuted–this article has the shocking answer. There is also a YouTube video sermon you can watch: The Coming Persecution of the Church. Here is information in the Spanish language: Persecuciones de la Iglesia y el Estado.
The Gospel of the Kingdom of God This free online pdf booklet has answers many questions people have about the Gospel of the Kingdom of God and explains why it is the solution to the issues the world is facing. Here are links to three related sermons: The World’s False Gospel, The Gospel of the Kingdom: From the New and Old Testaments, and The Kingdom of God is the Solution.
Are You Being Called by God? Norman Shoaf wrote various points to consider.
Is God Calling You? Alfred E Carrozzo wrote this.
What Did Christ Mean – Many Are Called, But Few Are Chosen? This article was by Raymond McNair.
Anglo – America in Prophecy & the Lost Tribes of Israel Are the Americans, Canadians, English, Scottish, Welsh, Australians, Anglo-Saxon (non-Dutch) Southern Africans, and New Zealanders descendants of Joseph? Where are the lost ten-tribes of Israel? Who are the lost tribes of Israel? What will happen to Jerusalem and the Jews in Israel? Will God punish the U.S.A., Canada, United Kingdom, and other Anglo-Saxon nations? Why might God allow them to be punished first? Here is a link to the Spanish version of this article: Anglo-América & las Tribus Perdidas de Israel. Information is also in the YouTube sermons titled Where are the Ten Lost Tribes? Why does it matter? and British are the Covenant People. A short YouTube of prophetic interest may be Barack Obama and the State of the Apocalypse.
Will the Anglo-Saxon Nations be Divided and Have People Taken as Slaves? Will the lands of the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand be divided? What about Jerusalem? What does Bible prophecy teach? Are there non-biblical prophecies that support this idea? Who will divide those lands? Who will end up with the lands and the people? Here is a link to a video titled Will the USA and other Anglo-nations be Divided and Their People Made Slaves? Here is a related item in the Spanish language ¿Serán divididas las naciones anglosajonas?
There is a Place of Safety for the Philadelphians. Why it May Be Petra This article discusses a biblical ‘place of safety’ and includes quotes from the Bible and Herbert W. Armstrong on this subject–thus, there is a biblically supported alternative to the rapture theory. There is also a video on the subject: Might Petra be the Place of Safety?
Who is the King of the West? Why is there no End-Time King of the West in Bible Prophecy? Is the United States the King of the West?
When Will the Great Tribulation Begin? 2017, 2018, or 2019? Can the Great Tribulation begin today? What happens before the Great Tribulation in the “beginning of sorrows”? What happens in the Great Tribulation and the Day of the Lord? Is this the time of the Gentiles? When is the earliest that the Great Tribulation can begin? What is the Day of the Lord? Who are the 144,000? Here is a version of the article in the Spanish language: ¿Puede comenzar la Gran Tribulación en 2016 o 2017? ¿Es el Tiempo de los Gentiles? You can also see the English language sermon videos: The Great Tribulation from the Mount of Olives and Can the Great Tribulation begin before 2020? A shorter video is: Will the Great Tribulation Start in 2017?
The Bible Condemns Homosexuality “Same-sex marriage” for “gays” and lesbians is becoming more acceptable to many. What does the Bible teach about homosexuality? Can homosexuals change? A related video sermon is titled What Does the Bible Really Teach about Homosexuality?
Pornography: A scourge on society Is pornography harmless fun? Does the Bible teach anything about it? What are the views of some involved with it? Here is a link to a YouTube video Pornography: Harmless Fun or a Scourge on Society?
Cross-dressing and other assaults against your children. What should you do? Is there an agenda to turn your children and/or grandchildren away from biblical morality and towards practices promoted by homosexuals? What does the Bible teach about cross-dressing? What should parents do? If there is an agenda, what has been going on? There is also a YouTube video on this, titled Cross dressing and Other Assaults Against Your Children.
Abortion, the Bible, and a Woman’s Right to Choose Do you know what the Bible teaches on this? Has the Roman Catholic Church allowed abortions? What about the real Church of God? Some may also, or instead, wish to view the YouTube video Abortion, the Bible, and US Debt.
Pornography: A scourge on society Is pornography harmless fun? Does the Bible teach anything about it? What are the views of some involved with it? Here is a link to a YouTube video Pornography: Harmless Fun or a Scourge on Society?
Donald Trump in Prophecy Prophecy, Donald Trump? Are there prophecies that Donald Trump may fulfill? Are there any prophecies that he has already helped fulfill? Could a Donald Trump presidency be apocalyptic? A related video is titled: Donald: ‘Trump of God’ or Apocalyptic?
Trump Presidency Magic 8 Ball or Bible Prophecy? BBC reported that one might as well use a ‘Magic Eight-Ball’ to try to predict what will happen in the remaining time of Donald Trump’s presidency. What is a ‘Magic Eight-Ball’? Dr. Thiel not only explains that, but also briefly goes over 10 biblically-based warnings he wrote would happen if Donald Trump were elected that have already began to come to pass. He also goes over something he wrote back in 2008 that the Trump presidency is also helping lead to fulfillment. Should you trust Bible prophecy or not? Dr. Thiel says that Bible prophecy can be trusted, despite the view of skeptics and others that either overlook or despise the Bible. This is a video.

Herbert W. Armstrong claimed that the 7th law of success was contact with God

Thursday, August 31st, 2017

COGwriter

In his booklet, The Seven Laws of Success, the late Herbert W. Armstrong listed the following first “six laws of success”:

Here, then, is the first law of success:

FIX THE RIGHT GOAL!…

So, the SECOND law of success in time sequence, is EDUCATION, or PREPARATION

The all-important law coming next in time order is GOOD HEALTH…

Take the FOURTH LAW. If you are motivated by GOD’S WORD, you’ll have DRIVE

Law Number 5—for Emergencies…RESOURCEFULNESS!…

Law number six, then, is PERSEVERANCE—stick-to-it-iveness!

Here is what he wrote related to the seventh law of success:

Still We Need Law Number 7!

Well now, it would certainly seem that if one follows these SIX laws of success, nothing more should be required!

But still, these “successful” men I have described followed these six principles. They gained their goals. They made money. They attained recognized status. They enjoyed the passing pleasures.

Still their lives were empty—they were never satisfied—they were discontented, they never found lasting, permanent, enduring happiness—they did not take their acquisitions with them when they died, and their fame died with them!

What they lacked—what ALL lack who fail of REAL success, application of Success Law number 7—the most important law of all! That is the ingredient that would have changed everything?

The Overlooked SEVENTH Law

I have reserved this all-important seventh Law till last to explain. But far from being least, it is first in vital importance!

I have held it till now because 1) it is the very last one that people will acknowledge and apply; and 2) being first in making possible real success, I want to state it last so it will remain stamped in the mind of the reader.

When serious illness strikes, people call the doctor. It is automatic for most to rely on human professional knowledge and skill—on material drugs, medicines and knives. But finally, when the attending physician—perhaps with specialists called in collaboration—gravely shakes his head and says there is no more that medical science can do—it is now in the hands of a higher Power—then, at last people cry out desperately to the Creator God!

Is it possible that the living GOD might be a factor in determining the success or failure of one’s life? Few have thought so.

People will ignore all their lives any idea of divine guidance and help—yet if one should find himself on a foodless and waterless raft after a shipwreck in mid-ocean, it is remarkable how quickly he would begin to believe there really is a living God! In last-resort desperation most people will cry out to Him whom they have ignored, disobeyed, and set at naught all their lives.

Wouldn’t it seem axiomatic that, if there is a compassionate beneficent Creator standing ready and willing to give us emergency help as a last resort, it would have been more sensible to have sought His guidance and help all along? Yet some have acquired wealth, lived luxuriously, and then, suddenly losing all, turned finally to God in their economic distress. Others have committed suicide. Few, it seems, will ever rely on their Maker and life-Sustainer until they feel helpless and in desperate need. Even then the motive too often is selfish.

Yet, if we are to enjoy the good things of life—freedom from fears and worries, peace of mind, security, protection, happiness, abundant well-being—the very SOURCE of their supply is the Great God! Since all comes from Him anyway, why not tap the SOURCE from the very beginning?

But in our day of modern science, sophistication and vanity, it has not been fashionable to believe in a Maker. In this deceived world, knowledge of God has found little or no place in modern education.

The ALL-IMPORTANT seventh Law of Success, nevertheless, is having contact with, and the guidance and continuous help of GOD!

And the person who does put this all-important seventh law last is very probably dooming his life to failure at the end.

Why of First Importance

Look again at the very first Law, as it has been listed here. It is not merely choosing a goal—any goal. It is setting as one’s life-aim the right goal.

The “successful” of this world all had goals. But their goals led to material ends. They sought happiness in vanity, pride of status, material acquisitions, physical activities and pursuits. They sought the approbation of people. But people are human, and their lives are temporary. Material objects, too, are not enduring, but wax old until consigned to disuse.

The main goals of those supposed to be successful in the world usually are two: Vanity—desire for status; and money with the material things it will buy. But happiness is not material, and money is not its source. Vanity, as Solomon observed is like a striving after wind!

These men I have mentioned made money. Their bank accounts may have been full, but their lives were empty. When they acquired money, it never satisfied, and always they wanted more. These monetary victories, these material acquisitions, gave, of course, a thrill of satisfaction—but it never lasted!

This life-long struggle—this constant striving “after wind”—striving after false values—left in its wake a trail of fears and worries, apprehensions, disappointments, heartaches, troubled consciences, discontent, empty lives, frustrations—and finally, DEATH!

Oh yes, of course there were pleasures, moments of excitement, periods of enjoyment. There were occasional thrills, temporary sensations of delight. But always they were followed by periods of depression. Always a gnawing inner soul-hunger returned. This in turn drove them to seek satisfaction in the thousand-and-one events in the world’s whirl of material pleasures and pastimes. Yet these never filled the void. They never satisfied the real inner hunger.

These people probably didn’t realize it, but the hunger was spiritual. And spiritual hunger is never satisfied by material food!

The “successful” of this world applied six of the success laws. But they left GOD out of the picture, and the happiness of real success out of their lives.

It seems almost no one, today, realizes HOW—and WHY—we were made. WHAT we humans are, and WHY we are. Why should we live in ignorance of these basics of knowledge?

Two basic and vital facts are overlooked:

1. While man was made a material being, of the dust of the ground, sustained by eating material food and drinking material water, he was made also to need spiritual food, and to drink of the “living water” of God’s Spirit. Without these spiritual needs man cannot be truly and continually happy. Nothing else really satisfies.

2. The Eternal Creator, who made us in His own likeness, is creator of ALL that is. Everything man needs to make life continuously and abundantly satisfying, must come from Him. He is the SOURCE OF SUPPLY. He is the GIVER of everything good. WHY must men ignore the true SOURCE, and try to obtain where there is nothing to be obtained? If I wish to draw clear, sparkling drinking water from a well, I will go to a well filled with such water, not to one that is empty. God says of our people: “For my people have committed two evils; they have forsaken me the FOUNTAIN of living waters, and hewed them out cisterns, broken cisterns, that can hold no water” (Jeremiah 2:13).

And again He says: “Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money; come ye, buy, and eat; yea, come, buy wine and milk without money and without price. Wherefore do ye spend money for that which is not bread? And your labour for that which satisfieth not?” (Isaiah 55:1-2.)

Once again, look at the first of the Success Laws. Stated another way, it is to DEFINE SUCCESS! And what constitutes real Success? Once you have learned the true meaning of Success, then you have found the only right goal.

The right goal sets the direction of your life’s journey. Success is the destination of that journey. Success is where you finally arrive—and true Success includes a happy and enjoyable journey along the way.

PURPOSE to Life?

Is there, after all, a PURPOSE to life?

If we were put here by a Creator, would He have put us here without a REASON? And a Creator with Mind and Power that could have designed and produced the human mind and body could have failed to make available for humans every tool, ingredient and facility needed to fulfill His Purpose!

Of course men cut off from God have no knowledge of that Purpose. For that knowledge is not material, but spiritual knowledge. And spiritual things cannot be seen—nor heard, felt, smelled or tasted. Spiritual knowledge can be transmitted only by revelation. And this world has rejected revelation. Men cut off from their Creator of necessity are spiritually blind and ignorant, groping in the dark. So they fail to seize the proper tools, ingredients and facilities.

But the Maker has sent an instruction book along with the human mechanism He made. It contains all the real answers. It reveals life’s real PURPOSE—the potential destiny of man! That instruction book, as Bruce Barton aptly said, is the “book nobody knows.” Almost no one knows that 95% of the contents of that Book is virtually ignored by the professing Christian clergy. Most scientists and educators today suppose, erroneously and in ignorance of the facts, that the Bible is merely the book of an ancient race of Jewish people, striving to devise a concept of a god—in by gone days of ignorance and superstition. They don’t examine the Book, as they examine other data, to see what it says. They ignore it as something beneath their pride of intellect to consider.

The religious Bible-believing fundamentalists generally quote and use not more than some 5% of the Scriptures. Approximately one-third of the entire contents of the Bible is devoted to ADVANCE NEWS REPORTS, called, in religious terminology, prophecy. FEW pay any attention to this third of the writings—and most seem devoid of understanding.

What almost ON ONE realizes is that the ignored 95% of that great volume is the INSTRUCTION BOOK which the Maker sent along with His product—just as any manufacturer of a material commodity does. Yet some scholars today have been surprised and shocked to learn that this ignored, maligned, misrepresented Book contains THE ANSWERS to life itself—reveals the PURPOSE of life—the LAWS that govern it—the ANSWER to what IS Success, and how to achieve it!

It has been like discovering a gold mine of knowledge they did not know existed. They have found that it MAKES SENSE—that, indeed, IT IS THE VERY FOUNDATION of KNOWLEDGE in just about all areas—that it provides the only right approach to the acquisition of further discoverable knowledge.

This ultimate potential destiny is the only TRUE goal. It is your reason for being alive! It is the reason you were born!

Those who have worked, striven, fought their way to any other goal have been wasting their lives—living for naught! They have, in true fact, been going nowhere! And how many, since humans were first put here on earth, have really known that PURPOSE—that one right goal of life? Very few, indeed!

The time when we need divine guidance, enlightenment, and help, is at the very BEGINNING—at the time when a young man or woman chooses that RIGHT GOAL. Without divine guidance the wrong goal is always set.

That is why poor people possessing the least knowledge and material goods sometimes appear to be the happiest. Actually they were not happy. They merely are less discontented! They have not progressed as far in the WRONG DIRECTION as those who smugly and vainly supposed themselves to be their more intelligent betters!

Life has a PURPOSE. God has set in actual, inexorable motion definite LAWS to PRODUCE for man every happiness, security, and GOOD thing he desires—THE WAY OF LIFE that will fulfill God’s PURPOSE for our being!

LOOK! THINK! An automobile was designed and built by its human makers to transport passengers, and do it more speedily and in more comfort than the old horse and buggy. Would it not be ridiculous if the automobile had a mind and free volition of action, and it would say: “That’s silly! I don’t think I was made to transport people. I think I was made for some other purpose. I refuse to transport people. I want to be an instrument for viewing the stars in the heavens.”

Apparently it is only stupid, foolish man—with POTENTIAL mind power and CAPACITY for intelligence beyond any creature God has created—who says “WHY have you made me thus?”

WHAT, then is the PURPOSE for which we were put here?

Of this, mankind has totally lost all conception. To people spiritually drunk on the false material concepts of our day, the statement of that purpose would appear strange, absurd, impossible. It SO FAR transcends anything conceived by humanity in this blinded world that the statement of it would prove too great to be grasped and accepted.

Suffice it to say—and I shall leave it to another booklet to explain—man was put here for the PURPOSE of being conformed to, and finally stamped with the exact perfect CHARACTER of Jesus Christ! Write for the free booklet Why Were You Born?

Christ is now stamped with the identical CHARACTER IMAGE of God, as well as the shining, brilliant, glorified appearance of God! For a mortal human to be transformed into that perfect spiritual image means that we must be CHANGED!

The Bible pictures God as the Master Potter—us as the clay. Indeed we are, literally clay images of God—composed of the dust of the ground (Genesis 2:7). As we now bear only the physical image of the “earthy,” we shall when changed, bear the spiritual image of the heavenly—of GOD (1 Corinthians 15:47-49). So we are clay images with human minds that are free moral agents. They may submit, or they may rebel. They have power of will, and of decision.

Free to Choose

Understand this! You are a free moral agent. God will never “cram” His religion down your throat.” He will never force you to decide His way or go His way. He not only allows you to choose the wrong way—He compels you to make your own decision. Otherwise His PURPOSE would be thwarted!

The living God has set two ways before us. One, His Way, the cause of all the good things you want here and now, plus eternal life in REAL SUCCESS continuously forever. The other the way of self-centeredness, vanity, greed, envy—the way mankind has gone, in rebellion against God and His Law—the way that causes all unhappiness, suffering, evils, and ends in death. And God compels you to choose! Yet He commands you to choose the Way that leads to REAL SUCCESS (see Deuteronomy 30:19).

You Need HELP

That ultimate TRUE Success is something you cannot attain to by yourself. The ingredient you lack is the GUIDANCE, the POWER and SPIRIT OF GOD.

You must make the decision. You must set this right GOAL. You must set your will. You must expend your full effort. You must WORK AT overcoming, growing and developing spiritually, and sticking with it. Yet GOD supplies the all-important ingredient—His power, His love, His faith—His guidance—HIS LIFE!

7th Law Changes Everything

Now look how DIFFERENT a whole life becomes when this SEVENTH SUCCESS LAW is utilized.

First, it will completely alter your overall major GOAL as I have just explained. Of course, you will have other minor goals—such as the profession or occupation to provide material needs, and HELP achieve the major goal. And these minor goals always must be compatible with and contributing to the major goal.

Your main goal, now, will be spiritual and not material. It will follow the WAY OF LIFE of the Ten Commandments. You will actually LIVE BY every Word of GOD—that is, the Bible!

Now re-examine the Second Law of SUCCESS.

Your EDUCATION and entire preparation will be DIFFERENT. You will seek to learn the TRUE VALUES of life—yes, of this life as well as the hereafter! This means your number one textbook will be the BIBLE. It will reveal to you the MIND OF CHRIST. This will provide your mental APPROACH in all education and practice.

Third, you will receive the KNOWLEDGE which God reveals about laws of HEALTH.

Take the FOURTH LAW. If you are motivated by GOD’S WORD, you’ll have DRIVE. God commands that you do what you do with your might! Apply yourself! Whatever is worth doing is worth doing the very best you can! Nine Biblical passages command that you apply your self with DILIGENCE! Ten other places in the Bible command us to BE DILIGENT. And 36 Scriptures command, or show the example of acting diligently! Many of these instruct us diligently to seek God’s guidance and help, several diligently to keep His commandments.

How about the businessman? “Seest thou a man diligent in his business? He shall stand before kings; he shall not stand before [obscure] men” (Proverbs 22:29).

The Bible does not condone laziness or shiftlessness. It counsels us to consider the ant and be wise. The Bible commands industriousness!

Solving Problems

Now, Law Number FIVE. No matter how intelligent, alert, or resourceful you may be, YOU NEED GOD’S WISDOM and HELP in solving the constant problems and meeting the recurring obstacles that beset life’s path. Whether it is in business, a profession, private life or what. The man who has CONTACT WITH GOD, who can take these matters—these emergencies—these problems—in the quietness of his private prayer room to the Throne of Grace and seek God’s counsel and advice IS GOING TO HAVE DIVINE GUIDANCE! That is, of course, provided he is submissive, obedient, diligent, faithful. WISDOM comes from GOD.

May I give you a personal example? God has blessed His Work, and caused it to grow into a tremendous worldwide activity, with offices around the world. God has set me in the position of human director and leader over this expanding enterprise, employing hundreds of people. We encounter problems of all kinds, constantly. I have problems to solve, obstacles to hurdle, policies to set, decisions to make which affect many lives—frequently involve many thousands of dollars, even millions. It is a weighty responsibility.

Always—and I can remember it from at least age 5—I have desired to have UNDERSTANDING. But more than fifty years ago, I discovered that I sadly lacked, yet sorely needed WISDOM. Having dedicated my life to live, literally, according to every word of God’s Instruction Book—the Bible—I obeyed this command of God: “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God. . . and it shall be given” (James 1:5). He has given me wisdom. Of course He has allowed me to make mistakes—but never a major mistake that could threaten His great Work.

Wisdom must be applied to every specific circumstance individually. I learned many years ago the need of getting all of the facts bearing on a case before making a decision. But it requires more. God’s Word says that in multitude of counselors there is safety. In any important decision I call in the most competent possible counselors, specialists in the field involved.

You simply cannot know, if you have never had this divine help, how very, very much it means! We have been saved hundreds, of times from costly blunders. We are saved from worries and the “headaches” most businessmen have to suffer over such problems. We can proceed in CONFIDENCE—that assurance that is FAITH! What a blessing! What a comfort, and a joy!

It PAYS Off

People trying to live without the living CHRIST in their lives are missing the most practical and valuable asset they could have. In the language of our day, “IT PAYS OFF!” Of course, we have to expend our own effort. We have to really THINK. We use all our own effort. We have to really THINK. We use all our own resources and natural resourcefulness. But we have that added SECURITY of divine GUIDANCE. Often God simply works out CIRCUMSTANCES. He literally gives us “the breaks”! IT PAYS!

Finally, now, look at Success Law Number SIX. Perseverance—Stick-to-it-iveness—Enduring—Never quitting or giving up.

The Maker’s Instruction Book seems full of this. Jesus’ parable of the sower and the seed showed the four classes. All heard God’s Message. All were given the opportunity. Three classes GAVE UP. One never really got started. Two started out with joy and a great flourish, but let former friends, the cares of this material life, pleasures, choke them off, and discourage them. The other class of quitters simply did not have the depth of strength of character within themselves to stay with anything. They were just naturally quitters. Even of those who went on, and endured, some were more diligent, more resourceful, better prepared, more careful of health, and consequently developed farther in accomplishment than others. Theirs will be the greater reward!

Jesus Christ said, plainly, “He that endureth unto the END, the same shall be SAVED” (Matthew 24:13).

Yes, these Seven Laws are the WAY, not only to business and economic SUCCESS—they are THE LAWS that lead to rich, rewarding, interest-filled, abundant living and, in the end, to ETERNAL LIFE AND GLORY in the Kingdom of God.

It teaches you to choose the RIGHT GOAL. It teaches you to STUDY, to show yourself approved to your Maker. It teaches you to acquire KNOWLEDGE, right and true education—preparation for success. It teaches you to watch your health. It teaches diligence—drive—dedication, persistent application. It teaches resourcefulness, and offers you divine help in applying it—and it teaches STAYING WITH IT TO THE END!

WHAT A HAPPY LIFE God haw made available! What blessedness,–what JOY! What SECURITY, this life of implicit living FAITH—reliance on the Creator—GOD!

I know! I’ve been enjoying this life for more than fifty years! It’s a BUSY life—but it’s interesting, thrilling, happy, abundantly REWARDING! And to constantly look forward to the OVERALL GOAL—an eternity in THE KINGDOM OF GOD!

I want to SHARE that life with you! You may enjoy it too!

Christians should pray, study the Bible, and rely on God. It probably should be the “first law of success” though I think I understand why Herbert Armstrong listed it as the seventh.

Some items of possibly related interest may include:

Prayer: What Does the Bible Teach? This free booklet contains 28 biblically-based tips on improving the effectiveness of your prayers. This is a pdf. A related two part sermon is available: What Does the Bible Teach About Prayer? and What does the Bible Teach About Prayer (& Healing)?
Why Were You Born? Why did God make you? Herbert W. Armstrong wrote this as a booklet on this important subject. You may also wish to read the article What is Your Destiny? or watch the video, also titled What is Your Destiny?
Building Character: Going on to Perfection Once you have accepted Jesus, do you need to strive for perfection and build character? A related video sermon is available: Going on to perfection and building character.
What is the Meaning of Life? Who does God say is happy? What is your ultimate destiny? Do you really know? Does God actually have a plan for YOU personally? There is also a video titled What is the meaning of your life?
What Should I Pray About? An old article by Lynn Torrance on prayer.
Living as a Christian: How and Why? In what ways do Christians live differently than others. What about praying, fasting, tithing, holy days, and the world? There is also a YouTube video related to that also called: Living as a Christian: How and Why?
The Seven Laws of Success Information by Herbert W. Armstrong that can help people become successful.
Christian Success Does the Bible teach that Christians are to be successful? Are there at least seven laws of success that Christians should follow? How does the Bible teach we are to become successfully spiritually? Does the Bible really teach that Christians should be successful physically? This video answers these questions and more from the Bible. An outline of some of the scriptures used is here: Christian Success Outline.

Rain and floods continue to affect Texas and Louisiana: Who controls the weather?

Wednesday, August 30th, 2017


Hurricane Harvey Flooding

COGwriter

Flooding associated with Hurricane Harvey is massive and is continuing:

August 30, 2017

HOUSTON — The devastating storm once known as Hurricane Harvey, already the biggest rainstorm in the history of the continental United States, delivering another punishing wave of rain Wednesday to Texas and Louisiana.

Five days after roaring ashore in Texas — leaving behind more than 24 trillion gallons of water, disastrous flooding across Houston and a mounting death toll that had grown to at least 37 people — Harvey made landfall before dawn Wednesday near tiny Cameron, La., and began grinding its way northeast. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-nation/wp/2017/08/30/harvey-again-makes-landfall-this-time-as-a-tropical-storm-near-cameron-la/?utm_term=.31970703ac8b

August 30, 2017

Texas Governor Greg Abbott has said that “the worst is not yet over” for the south-east of the US state, after devastating Tropical Storm Harvey.

He said rain continues to fall and flooding in certain areas may last another week.

More than 20 people are reported dead, and large parts of the city of Houston are under water.

The storm has now moved on to neighbouring Louisiana, where flash-flood warnings have been issued. …

The storm, which previously reached hurricane status, has dumped record rainfall in the region. …

in Louisiana, the storm landed in the south-west corner of the state, around Cameron, in the early hours of Wednesday. It is predicted to travel in a north-easterly direction, weakening as it goes.

The National Weather Service said heavy rainfall was expected from Louisiana to Kentucky over the next three days.

Flash-flood warnings remain in effect for parts of southern Louisiana and southern Mississippi. http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-41096565

August 30, 2017

Tropical Storm Harvey broke all records for rainfall from a single storm in the continental United States, and its consequences are likely to be felt for years. While the worst of the storm has cleared out of the Houston area, know that this story is not yet over.

It’s just beginning. Tens of thousands are displaced from their homes, search and rescue operations are still underway, flood waters have not yet receded, and the total cost of the storm has yet to be fully tallied. Cleanup and rebuilding efforts will likely take years.

And the storm itself continues to dump rain over East Texas and Louisiana.

“While the threat of heavy rains has ended in the Houston/Galveston area, catastrophic and life-threatening flooding will continue in and around Houston eastward into southwest Louisiana for the rest of the week,” the National Hurricane Center writes in a Wednesday morning forecast. “The expected heavy rains spreading northeastward from Louisiana into western Kentucky may also lead to flash flooding and increased river and small stream flooding.” https://www.vox.com/science-and-health/2017/8/30/16225778/tropical-storm-harvey-houston-beaumont-port-arthur

Those affected by Hurricane Harvey are in my prayers.

The “broke all records” report should show us that we cannot be complacent and that things, including weather, can change beyond what it ever has before.

Storms like Hurricane Harvey show us that the world can quickly and dramatically change.

While many humans often seem to think otherwise, God is in charge and controls the weather:

Notice the following:

The Bible makes plain who is in control of the weather! “Fire and hail, snow and clouds; stormy wind, fulfilling His word” (Ps . 148:8 , RAV).

God intervenes in weather to work out his purposes among nations…

Plagues of disastrous weather are a warning to humanity. Weather for the most part operates according to natural laws. Damaging weather patterns sometimes develop. God simply may not choose to intervene to stop them because of nations’ various sins and idolatry.

The Bible reveals God also directly intervenes to cause weather plagues to warn certain nations. “I have smitten you with blasting and mildew . .. yet have ye not returned unto me, saith the Lord” (Amos 4:9). He, in his great purpose, may also allow Satan-the god of this world (II Cor. 4:4)-to have a role in producing calamitous weather, for man’s ultimate learning (see Job, chapter 1). (Schroeder D. CHAOTIC WEATHER Return of the dust bowl? Plain Truth. 1984, pp. 19-20)

As the above shows, the Bible teaches that God uses weather to warn people and to get their attention, especially if they have left Him.

(A couple of days ago, I quoted scriptures related to God controlling heavy rainfall, those are in the news post: Harvey’s “Unprecedented” Devastation, “No Parallel To Any Rainstorm In US History.”) God’s word also say He can bring floods (see Weather Blessings and Sorrows).

Weather is not as random as most seem to want to believe.

In the Bible, God also tells of weather blessings for obedience:

3 ‘If you walk in My statutes and keep My commandments, and perform them,
4 then I will give you rain in its season, the land shall yield its produce, and the trees of the field shall yield their fruit.
5 Your threshing shall last till the time of vintage, and the vintage shall last till the time of sowing;
you shall eat your bread to the full, and dwell in your land safely. (Leviticus 26:3-5)

1 Now it shall come to pass, if you diligently obey the voice of the Lord your God, to observe carefully all His commandments which I command you today, that the Lord your God will set you high above all nations of the earth. 2 And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you, because you obey the voice of the Lord your God:

3 “Blessed shall you be in the city, and blessed shall you be in the country.

4 “Blessed shall be the fruit of your body, the produce of your ground and the increase of your herds, the increase of your cattle and the offspring of your flocks.

5 “Blessed shall be your basket and your kneading bowl…

11 And the Lord will grant you plenty of goods, in the fruit of your body, in the increase of your livestock, and in the produce of your ground, in the land of which the Lord swore to your fathers to give you. 12 The Lord will open to you His good treasure, the heavens, to give the rain to your land in its season, and to bless all the work of your hand. (Deuteronomy 28:1-5, 11-12)

And while there has never been a human society with perfect obedience, nations like the USA, who once had more respect for the Bible, at least used to make more of an effort to obey more laws of God than we now see.

Bad weather can come upon the disobedient:

15 “But it shall come to pass, if you do not obey the voice of the Lord your God, to observe carefully all His commandments and His statutes which I command you today, that all these curses will come upon you and overtake you: 16 “Cursed shall you be in the city, and cursed shall you be in the country. 17 “Cursed shall be your basket and your kneading bowl. 18 “Cursed shall be the fruit of your body and the produce of your land, the increase of your cattle and the offspring of your flocks. 19 “Cursed shall you be when you come in, and cursed shall you be when you go out. 20 “The Lord will send on you cursing, confusion, and rebuke in all that you set your hand to do, until you are destroyed and until you perish quickly, because of the wickedness of your doings in which you have forsaken Me. 21 The Lord will make the plague cling to you until He has consumed you from the land which you are going to possess. 22 The Lord will strike you with consumption, with fever, with inflammation, with severe burning fever, with the sword, with scorching, and with mildew; they shall pursue you until you perish. 23 And your heavens which are over your head shall be bronze, and the earth which is under you shall be iron. 24 The Lord will change the rain of your land to powder and dust; from the heaven it shall come down on you until you are destroyed. (Deuteronomy 28:15-24)

9 “I blasted you with blight and mildew.
When your gardens increased,
Your vineyards,
Your fig trees,
And your olive trees,
The locust devoured them;
Yet you have not returned to Me,”
Says the Lord. (Amos 4:7-9)

Expect more weather problems, including blight and mildew, in the unrepentant USA.

As far as God controlling the weather goes, in my view, weather was one of the reasons that Mitt Romney lost against Barack Obama in 2012 (cf. Daniel 4:17). There was a major storm, ‘superstorm Sandy’ that hit the north-east and that seemed to be the time more polls started to reduce Mitt Romney’s chances. Here is something I posted about that November 10, 2012:

I believe, for example, that God allowed superstorm Sandy which likely affected the election, in the favor of Barack Obama.  Others may disagree, but for the past 2-3 years I felt that something would occur within a week or so of the 2012  US presidential election.  And while superstorm Sandy was still going on, I discussed this with some I work with prior to the election, and mentioned that I felt that the superstorm would affect the election.

The Bible clearly teaches, “the Most High rules in the kingdom of men, and gives it to whomever He chooses” (Daniel 4:25).

God controls the weather.

Weather events should serve as a wake-up call.

Things in the USA will not remain as they have been.

Sadly, many will be complacent and not really think that disaster will happen, but that will be a mistake:

9 Rise up, you women who are at ease, Hear my voice; You complacent daughters, Give ear to my speech. 10 In a year and some days You will be troubled, you complacent women; For the vintage will fail, The gathering will not come. 11 Tremble, you women who are at ease; Be troubled, you complacent ones; Strip yourselves, make yourselves bare, And gird sackcloth on your waists. 12 People shall mourn upon their breasts For the pleasant fields, for the fruitful vine. 13 On the land of my people will come up thorns and briers, Yes, on all the happy homes in the joyous city; 14 Because the palaces will be forsaken, The bustling city will be deserted. The forts and towers will become lairs forever, A joy of wild donkeys, a pasture of flocks — (Isaiah 32:9-14)

14 The sinners in Zion are afraid;
Fearfulness has seized the hypocrites:
“Who among us shall dwell with the devouring fire?
Who among us shall dwell with everlasting burnings? (Isaiah 33:14)

Expect worse weather incidents to come. Do not be complacent or lukewarm (cf. Revelation 3:14-18).

Change will happen. Much more so than most believe.

Expect that the time will come when the USA is no more (cf. Daniel 11:39; see also USA in Prophecy: The Strongest Fortresses).

Some items of possibly related interest may include:

Weather Blessings and Sorrows Are weather problems a warning? What should be done? What does the Bible teach about weather? What about floods, droughts, heat, earthquakes, tornadoes, and solar storms? Here is a related YouTube video Does God Use Weather? A related item in the Spanish language would be Bendiciones y maldiciones del clima.
The ‘Unpardonable Sin’ and ‘Climate Change’? On September 7, 2016, Olav Fykse Tveit, Church of Norway Pastor, and the General Secretary of the World Council of Churches, essentially declared that those who ignore ‘climate change’ are committing the ‘unpardonable sin’ against the Holy Spirit. Are those two even related? In this video, Dr. Thiel answers that and explains from the Bible what the ‘unpardonable sin’ is and how you can avoid it. He also discusses aspects of Christianity and the environment.
The Bible, Christians, and the Environment How should Christians view the environment? Does the Bible give any clues? What are some of the effects of air, water, and land pollution? Is environmental pollution a factor in autism and death? Do pollutants seem to double the autism risk? What will Jesus do? A YouTube video is available titled Air Pollution, Autism, and Prophecy.
USA in Prophecy: The Strongest Fortresses Can you point to scriptures, like Daniel 11:39, that point to the USA in the 21st century? This article does. A related sermon is titled: Do these 7 prophesies point to the end of the USA?
United Nations: Humankind’s Last Hope or New World Order? Is the UN the last hope for humanity? Or might its goals end up with sinister results? Two related videos include UN’s ‘New Universal Agenda’ is a False Gospel! and United Nations and Vatican Are Planning the New World Order.
Laudato Si: Pope’s Agenda or Kingdom of God? Pope Francis’ 2nd encyclical is titled ‘Laudato Si.’ In it, he goes over his views related to environmental, economic, social, moral, agricultural, and spiritual issues. He advocates international cooperation to solve various problems he believes are affecting humanity. Is that Pope’s agenda the solution? What about the Kingdom of God? does the Bible teach? Two related articles include Laudato Si: Will Pope Francis’ economic actions match his words? and Laudato Si: A call for a one-world government?
Christian Repentance Do you know what repentance is? Is it really necessary for salvation? A related sermon is also available titled: Real Christian Repentance.
The Bible Condemns Homosexuality “Same-sex marriage” for “gays” and lesbians is becoming more acceptable to many. What does the Bible teach about homosexuality? Can homosexuals change? A related video sermon is titled: What Does the Bible Really Teach about Homosexuality?
Pornography: A scourge on society Is pornography harmless fun? Does the Bible teach anything about it? What are the views of some involved with it? Here is a link to a YouTube video Pornography: Harmless Fun or a Scourge on Society?
Anglo – America in Prophecy & the Lost Tribes of Israel Are the Americans, Canadians, English, Scottish, Welsh, Australians, Anglo-Saxon (non-Dutch) Southern Africans, and New Zealanders descendants of Joseph? Where are the lost ten-tribes of Israel? Who are the lost tribes of Israel? What will happen to Jerusalem and the Jews in Israel? Will God punish the U.S.A., Canada, United Kingdom, and other Anglo-Saxon nations? Why might God allow them to be punished first? Here is a link to the Spanish version of this article: Anglo-América & las Tribus Perdidas de Israel. Information is also in the YouTube sermons titled Where are the Ten Lost Tribes? Why does it matter? and British are the Covenant People. A short YouTube of prophetic interest may be Barack Obama and the State of the Apocalypse.
Will the Anglo-Saxon Nations be Divided and Have People Taken as Slaves? Will the lands of the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand be divided? What about Jerusalem? What does Bible prophecy teach? Are there non-biblical prophecies that support this idea? Who will divide those lands? Who will end up with the lands and the people? Here is a link to a video titled Will the USA and other Anglo-nations be Divided and Their People Made Slaves? Here is a related item in the Spanish language ¿Serán divididas las naciones anglosajonas?
British are the Covenant People What do ‘British’ and ‘Britain’ mean in Hebrew? Are the descendants of the Anglo-Saxons people of the covenant? Does the British royal family connect to the throne of David? What does the Bible teach? What does history show us? Is there any DNA evidence related to British-Israelism? When did Christianity make it to the British Isles? Could Jeremiah have made it to the British Isles? What type of Christians made it to the British Isles? Did the last King of England believe in British Israelism?Donald Trump in Prophecy Prophecy, Donald Trump? Are there prophecies that Donald Trump may fulfill? Are there any prophecies that he has already helped fulfill? Could a Donald Trump presidency be apocalyptic? A related video is titled: Donald: ‘Trump of God’ or Apocalyptic?
Trump Presidency Magic 8 Ball or Bible Prophecy? BBC reported that one might as well use a ‘Magic Eight-Ball’ to try to predict what will happen in the remaining time of Donald Trump’s presidency. What is a ‘Magic Eight-Ball’? Dr. Thiel not only explains that, but also briefly goes over 10 biblically-based warnings he wrote would happen if Donald Trump were elected that have already began to come to pass. He also goes over something he wrote back in 2008 that the Trump presidency is also helping lead to fulfillment. Should you trust Bible prophecy or not? Dr. Thiel says that Bible prophecy can be trusted, despite the view of skeptics and others that either overlook or despise the Bible. This is a video.
Donald Trump and America’s Apocalypse This 188 page book is for people truly interested in prophecies related to Donald Trump and the United States, including learning about several that have already been fulfilled and those that will be fulfilled in the future. The physical book can be purchased at Amazon for $12.99 from the following link: Donald Trump and America’s Apocalypse.
Donald Trump and America’s Apocalypse-Kindle Edition This electronic version of the 188 page print edition is available for only US$3.99. And you do not need an actual Kindle device to read it. Why? Amazon will allow you to download it to almost any device: Please click HERE to download one of Amazon s Free Reader Apps. After you go to for your free Kindle reader and then go to Donald Trump and America’s Apocalypse-Kindle Edition.

Signs and lying wonders: Poltergeists and ecumenism

Tuesday, August 29th, 2017


1911 Report of ‘Poltergeist’

COGWriter

A reader sent me a link to the first of the following two related items:

THE MUM at the centre of Scotland’s incredible “poltergeist” case broke her silence yesterday.

Catherine Shreenan told of the stress the whole affair had placed her under – but insisted she didn’t want to discuss the bizarre occurrences at her home.

The Record revealed on Saturday how police who went to the Rutherglen house where Ms Shreenan lives with her teenage son had themselves witnessed a series of unexplained happenings.

Called by the frantic mum to deal with what was described as a “disturbance” officers saw clothes flying across a room, lights going off and when they went back on the lampshades were upside down and oven doors opening and closing.

A chihuahua dog which was playing in the garden was then discovered sitting on top of a seven-foot hedge.

Yesterday Ms Shreenan said: “It’s placed enormous stress on the family. I’ve had people, teenagers, going past my home singing Ghostbusters.” …

Police were called to the house on Monday and Tuesday last week.

The situation has been discussed at high levels within Police Scotland, with senior officers perplexed as to how they best handle the incidents.

Police sources said officers with 20 years experience at the force had witnessed the strange events and nobody knew how to proceed.

The source said: “One problem we’ve got is where we go from here as no crime has been established, so what else can we do but deal with any reports of disturbances.”

A priest has been to the house in Stonelaw Road and performed what has been described as a ‘blessing’ at the property. August 15, 2016 http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/poltergeist-case-mum-speaks-enormous-8630255

Police officers who called to the house, near Glasgow, last week reportedly saw the family’s pet Chihuahua levitating and clothes flying across rooms.The mother and teenager contacted officers after being left “extremely distressed” by the “violent and unexplained circumstances”, according to insiders.
A baffled source said: “These were incidents that were witnessed by our own officers. Incidents that are not easily explained.”

But officers with more than 20 years’ service are saying they’ve never seen anything like this.

“It really is something that down-to-earth police officers are having trouble getting their heads round.”How do you handle what, despite us liking to use the word, has been described as a poltergeist.”

Another insider said: “The officers witnessed the lights going off, clothes flying across the room and the dog sitting on top of the hedge.”The officers called their superiors who also attended thinking the cops were perhaps being a bit silly but it’s being taken very seriously.”The fact it was witnessed by our officers has lent itself to a very different but active inquiry.” August 15, 2016 http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/700059/ghost-poltergeist-Scotland-South-Lanarkshire

The fact that the reports say that this was witnessed by police officers, indicates that this is not just a delusional report, but that something, apparently demonic, was witnessed.

Yet publicly claiming something came from demons is not what most modern government officials will do. So, they are at a loss on this.

Here is how Dictionary.com defines poltergeist:

noun

1. a ghost or spirit supposed to manifest its presence by noises, knockings, etc.

The ‘spirit’ doing what has been described in Scotland certainly sounds as if it is demonic.

We should expect to see increases in such demonic ‘paranormal’ activity.

Why?

Notice the following prophecy written by the Apostle Paul:

3 Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition, 4 who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.

5 Do you not remember that when I was still with you I told you these things? 6 And now you know what is restraining, that he may be revealed in his own time. 7 For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only He who now restrains will do so until He is taken out of the way. (2 Thessalonians 2:3-7)

So, the restrainer will be taken out of the way before the end. (For information on who the restrainer seems to be, check out the article What is Restrained and Who is Restraining in 2 Thessalonians 2:7?)

After the restrainer is out of the way, we will see more signs and lying wonders:

8 And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming. 9 The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, 10 and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. 11 And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, 12 that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness. (2 Thessalonians 2:8-12)

Thus we see that, in the New Testament, the Apostle Paul warned that towards the end, almost all would be deceived by signs and lying wonders.

Deception must be clever to work, and would need some type of ‘verification’ to be believed by the masses.

Throughout history multitudes have already been deceived by signs and wonders coming from statues and alleged apparitions of Jesus and Mary, as well as other demonic manifestations. They have felt that this was ‘proof’ that some false religion was true. But Christians are supposed to walk by faith and not sight (2 Corinthians 5:7). Also notice something that the Apostle John was inspired to write:

1 Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; (1 John 4:1)

While most, incorrectly, feel that they can properly test/discern the spirits, that is not the case. Even most real Christians in these end times are not doing that correctly (cf. Revelation 3:14-19; see also How To Determine If Someone is a True Prophet of God). However, the ‘Laodicean Christians‘ will not be deceived like the non-Christians will be–but they will have problems because of their improper priorities (consider also the video 17 Laodicean Errors in Prophecy).

Last month, on the Protestant TBN channel, I saw a news item where a Roman Catholic woman was excited about ‘speaking in tongues’ etc. She talked about signs and wonders, and the Protestant commentator was encouraging this belief. Signs and lying wonders are associated with the ecumenical movement.

In the future, it is likely  that the “interfaith movement” will employ “Mary,” signs, and other ideas as tools for improper unity for those who are not true, biblical, Christians (see Will the Interfaith Movement Lead to Peace or Sudden Destruction?).

Satan has a plan, and deceit, signs, and lying wonders are part of it (see also Satan’s Plan).

Having ‘verified’ paranormal activity will condition people to accept as real, improper manifestations in the future.

The Book of Revelation shows that a massive deceit, in the form of wrong worship, will affect the world:

7 It was granted to him to make war with the saints and to overcome them. And authority was given him over every tribe, tongue, and nation. 8 All who dwell on the earth will worship him, whose names have not been written in the Book of Life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.

9 If anyone has an ear, let him hear. 10 He who leads into captivity shall go into captivity; he who kills with the sword must be killed with the sword. Here is the patience and the faith of the saints.

11 Then I saw another beast coming up out of the earth, and he had two horns like a lamb and spoke like a dragon. 12 And he exercises all the authority of the first beast in his presence, and causes the earth and those who dwell in it to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. 13 He performs great signs, so that he even makes fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men. 14 And he deceives those who dwell on the earth by those signs which he was granted to do in the sight of the beast, telling those who dwell on the earth to make an image to the beast who was wounded by the sword and lived. (Revelation 13:7-14)

We are getting closer to the fulfillment of these verses in Revelation. Likely within the next decade or two.

Expect to see more ‘verified’ ‘paranormal’ activity.

Here are some links to items of possibly related interest:
Close Encounters of a ‘Spirit’ Kind discusses some experiences I believe were (demon) ‘spirit’ related. A video is also available titled: Poltergeists and Lying Wonders.
Satan’s Plan Does Satan have a plan? What is it? Has it already been successful? Will it be successful in the future? Here are links to a two-part sermon series: What are Some of the Parts of Satan’s Plan? and Satan’s Plan is More Dramatic than Many Realize.
What is Restrained and Who is Restraining in 2 Thessalonians 2:7? Are sorceries being restrained until the future? What is the mystery of lawlessness? Here is a related article in Spanish: ¿Qué es lo que se restringe y quién lo está restringiendo en 2 Tesalonicenses 2:7?
The Falling Away: The Bible and WCG Teachings Who is 2 Thessalonians 2:3 referring to? Are there multiple falling aways? Here is a related link in Spanish/español: La Apostasía: Enseñanzas de la Biblia y de la WCG. There are also two YouTube videos on the subject that you can watch The Falling Away Part 1: From the Bible and Church History and The Falling Away Part 2: Positions Presented by Others.
Who is the Man of Sin of 2 Thessalonians 2? Is this the King of the North, the ten-horned beast of Revelation 13:1-11, or the two-horned Beast of Revelation 13:12-16? Some rely on traditions, but what does the Bible teach? Here is a related link in Spanish/español: ¿Quién es el Hombre de Pecado de 2 Tesalonicenses 2? Here is a version in Mandarin: 主编: 谁是’大罪人’?Here is a link to a related YouTube video, in English, titled Who is the Man of Sin?
How To Determine If Someone is a True Prophet of God There are many false prophets. How can Christians determine who is a true prophet? There is also a sermon-length video titled How to determine if someone is a true prophet of God. Here is a related link in Spanish/español: ¿Cómo determinar si alguien es un verdadero profeta de Dios?
Jesus: The Son of God and Saviour Who was Jesus? Why did He come to earth? What message did He bring? Is there evidence outside the Bible that He existed? Here is a YouTube sermon titled Jesus: Son of God and Saviour.
The Laodicean Church Era has been predominant circa 1986 A.D. to present. The Laodiceans are non-Philadelphians who mainly descended from the old WCG or its offshoots. They do not properly understand the work or biblical prophecies and will face the Great Tribulation if they do not repent. One video of related interest is 17 Laodicean Errors in Prophecy.
Did God Create a Devil? If not, what happened? Herbert W. Armstrong wrote this as a booklet.
The Bible and Astrology Should Christians avoid participating in astrology or did God inspire it? Does the Bible encourage astrology? What does the Bible actually teach? What is astrology? How does astrology differ from astronomy? Should Christians Be Involved In Astrology?
OMENS? DIVINATION? HOROSCOPES? THE ORIGIN OF ASTROLOGY
Where did astrology come from? Should you read your horoscope?
Does Astrology Work? Many believe and follow astrology–but does it work? Here is a link to the article in Mandarin Chinese: 占星术准确吗? .
Angels, Cherubim, and Seraphim This is information about various types of angelic beings.
Mary, the Mother of Jesus and the Apparitions Do you know much about Mary? Are the apparitions real? What happened at Fatima? What might they mean for the rise of the ecumenical religion of Antichrist? Are Protestants moving towards Mary? How do the Eastern/Greek Orthodox view Mary? How might Mary view her adorers? Here is a link to a YouTube video Marian Apparitions May Fulfill Prophecy. Here is a link to a sermon video: Why Learn About Fatima?
Satan’s Plan A Brief Introduction This is a short video dealing with Satan’s plan.
Does God Have a 6,000 Year Plan? What Year Does the 6,000 Years End? Was a 6000 year time allowed for humans to rule followed by a literal thousand year reign of Christ on Earth taught by the early Christians? Does God have 7,000 year plan? What year may the six thousand years of human rule end? When will Jesus return? 2026 or 20xx? There is also a video titled The 6000 Year Plan: Is the end of humanity’s reign almost up? Here is a link to the article in Spanish: ¿Tiene Dios un plan de 6,000 años?
When Will the Great Tribulation Begin? 2017, 2018, or 2019? Can the Great Tribulation begin today? What happens before the Great Tribulation in the “beginning of sorrows”? What happens in the Great Tribulation and the Day of the Lord? Is this the time of the Gentiles? When is the earliest that the Great Tribulation can begin? What is the Day of the Lord? Who are the 144,000? Here is a version of the article in the Spanish language: ¿Puede comenzar la Gran Tribulación en 2016 o 2017? ¿Es el Tiempo de los Gentiles? You can also see the English language sermon videos: The Great Tribulation from the Mount of Olives and Can the Great Tribulation begin before 2020? A shorter video is: Will the Great Tribulation Start in 2017?
Will the Interfaith Movement Lead to Peace or Sudden Destruction? Is the interfaith movement going to lead to lasting peace or is it warned against? A video sermon of related interest is: Will the Interfaith Movement lead to World War III? and a video sermon is also available: Do You Know That Babylon is Forming?
Pope Francis: Could this Marian Focused Pontiff be Fulfilling Prophecy? Pope Francis has taken many steps to turn people more towards his version of ‘Mary.’ Could this be consistent with biblical and Catholic prophecies? This article documents what has been happening. There is also a video version titled Pope Francis: Could this Marian Focused Pontiff be Fulfilling Prophecy?
Feast of the Immaculate Conception? Did early Christians teach Mary had an immaculate conception and led a sinless life?
Origin of the Marian Dogmas: Where Do Catholic Scholars Say The Four Dogmas of Mary Came From?
Assumption of Mary Did Mary die? Was she taken to heaven on August 15th? What is known? What does the Bible show?
Do you understand the ramifications of the ‘Lady of Guadalupe’? It is claimed that a female apparition appeared near Mexico City on December 12, 1531. How has it affected the world? What might it suggest about the future?
What Did the Early Church Teach About Idols and Icons? Did Catholic and Orthodox “saints” endorse or condemn idols and icons for Christians?
Fatima Shock! What the Vatican Does Not Want You to Know About Fatima, Dogmas of Mary, and Future Apparitions. Whether or not you believe anything happened at Fatima, if you live long enough, you will be affected by its ramifications (cf. Isaiah 47; Revelation 17). Fatima Shock! provides concerned Christians with enough Catholic-documented facts to effectively counter every false Marian argument. In addition to the print version, there is a Kindle version of Fatima Shock! which you can acquire in seconds.
Hope of Salvation: How the Continuing Church of God differs from most Protestants How the real Church of God differs from mainstream/traditional Protestants, is perhaps the question I am asked most by those without a Church of God background. As far as some changes affecting Protestantism, watch the video Charismatic Kenneth Copeland and Anglican Tony Palmer: Protestants Beware! [Português: Esperança do salvação: Como a igreja do deus difere da maioria de protestantes]. A sermon is also available: How Does the Church of God Differ from Protestantism?
Beware: Protestants Going Towards Ecumenical Destruction! What is going on in the Protestant world? Are Protestants turning back to their ‘mother church’ in Rome? Does the Bible warn about this? What are Catholic plans and prophecies related to this? Is Protestantism doomed? See also World Council of Churches Peace Plan.
Which Is Faithful: The Roman Catholic Church or the Continuing Church of God? Do you know that both groups shared a lot of the earliest teachings? Do you know which church changed? Do you know which group is most faithful to the teachings of the apostolic church? Which group best represents true Christianity? This documented article answers those questions.
The History of Early Christianity Are you aware that what most people believe is not what truly happened to the true Christian church? Do you know where the early church was based? Do you know what were the doctrines of the early church? Is your faith really based upon the truth or compromise?
Where is the True Christian Church Today? This free online pdf booklet answers that question and includes 18 proofs, clues, and signs to identify the true vs. false Christian church. Plus 7 proofs, clues, and signs to help identify Laodicean churches. A related sermon is also available: Where is the True Christian Church? Here is a link to the booklet in the Spanish language: ¿Dónde está la verdadera Iglesia cristiana de hoy? Here is a link in the German language: WO IST DIE WAHRE CHRISTLICHE KIRCHE HEUTE? Here is a link in the French language: Où est la vraie Église Chrétienne aujourd’hui?
Continuing History of the Church of God This pdf booklet is a historical overview of the true Church of God and some of its main opponents from Acts 2 to the 21st century. Related sermon links include Continuing History of the Church of God: c. 31 to c. 300 A.D. and Continuing History of the Church of God: 4th-16th Centuries and Continuing History of the Church of God: 17th-20th Centuries. The booklet is available in Spanish: Continuación de la Historia de la Iglesia de Dios, German: Kontinuierliche Geschichte der Kirche Gottes, French: L Histoire Continue de l Église de Dieu and Ekegusii Omogano Bw’ekanisa Ya Nyasae Egendererete.

Pornography is damaging to men and women

Monday, August 28th, 2017

COGwriter

It pornography harmless fun or is it damaging?

The BBC reported the following:

Easy access to online porn is ‘damaging’ men’s health, says NHS therapist

Angela Gregory says more and more men in their late teens and early 20s are suffering from erectile dysfunction.

She puts the blame on people becoming addicted to watching online porn.

There are no official figures but she says a lot of the time it is via smartphones and laptops.

“What I’ve seen over the last 16 years, particularly the last five years, is an increase in the amount of younger men being referred,” she said.

“Our experience is that historically men that were referred to our clinic with problems with erectile dysfunction were older men whose issues were related to diabetes, MS, cardio vascular disease.

“These younger men do not have organic disease, they’ve already been tested by their GP and everything is fine.

“So one of the first assessment questions I’d always ask now is about pornography and masturbatory habit because that can be the cause of their issues about maintaining an erection with a partner.” August 15, 2016 http://www.bbc.co.uk/newsbeat/article/37058019/easy-access-to-online-porn-is-damaging-mens-health-says-nhs-therapist

This is just another problem with pornography. Pornography is bad.

 Here is some of what BBC Radio reported about pornography earlier

What is it?

Porn is any material (words, sounds, pictures) designed to be sexually arousing. Anatomy pictures may be sexually explicit, but not intended to be arousing. That’s the difference.

How big is the porn industry?

Almost all adults have seen some type of pornographic material by choice or accident. Since the arrival of the internet, pornography is far more readily available and less regulated.

Around 25 percent of all internet searches are for pornographic content, and on average almost 30,000 people are looking at porn at any given second.

Shockingly, an investigation by the London School of Economics found that 90 percent of youngsters between eight and 16 have accessed porn online, many without meaning to find it, and most while doing their homework. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/articles/Jq395BwWdx9wpY7cCnYWcP/porn accessed 02/05/2016

While I knew that pornography fueled the early rise of the internet, the amount of pornography searches seems astronomical. This is wrong for people to do and is not good for them.

Notice some statements in the Bible from Jesus and the Apostle Paul:

27 “You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ 28 But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart. (Matthew 5:27-28)

18 Flee sexual immorality. Every sin that a man does is outside the body, but he who commits sexual immorality sins against his own body. (1 Corinthians 6:18)

Adultery is prohibited by the seventh commandment (see also What Did Jesus Teach About the Ten Commandments?).

Jesus and the Apostle Paul warned against attempting to provoke, stir up, or mentally succumb to sexual lust. Thus, they are also condemning pornography, including dressing inappropriately (see also 1 Timothy 2:8-9).

Notice something from the Apostle James:

12 Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him. 13 Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am tempted by God”; for God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He Himself tempt anyone. 14 But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. 15 Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death. (James 1:12-15)

When one flees sexual immorality, one resists temptation. Notice also something else from James:

7 Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. 8 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. (James 4:7-8)

People are not to be ‘double-minded,’–they need to keep away from pornography. Satan wants humans to accept the falsehoods associated with pornography.

The Old Testament also had prohibitions related to pornography:

15 He who walks righteously and speaks uprightly,
He who despises the gain of oppressions,
Who gestures with his hands, refusing bribes,
Who stops his ears from hearing of bloodshed,
And shuts his eyes from seeing evil:
16 He will dwell on high;
His place of defense will be the fortress of rocks;
Bread will be given him,
His water will be sure. (Isaiah 33:15-16)

1 I have made a covenant with my eyes; Why then should I look upon a young woman? (Job 31:1).

24 To keep you from the evil woman,
From the flattering tongue of a seductress.
25 Do not lust after her beauty in your heart,
Nor let her allure you with her eyelids.
26 For by means of a harlot
A man is reduced to a crust of bread;
And an adulteress will prey upon his precious life.
27 Can a man take fire to his bosom,
And his clothes not be burned?
28 Can one walk on hot coals,
And his feet not be seared? (Proverbs 6:24-28)

26 Therefore I will uncover your skirts over your face,
That your shame may appear.
27 I have seen your adulteries
And your lustful neighings,
The lewdness of your harlotry,
Your abominations on the hills in the fields. (Jeremiah 13:26-27)

15 “Woe to him who gives drink to his neighbor,
Pressing him to your bottle,
Even to make him drunk,
That you may look on his nakedness!
16 You are filled with shame instead of glory.
You also — drink!
And be exposed as uncircumcised!
The cup of the Lord’s right hand will be turned against you,
And utter shame will be on your glory. (Habakkuk 2:15-16)

How porn-purveyors view pornography sounds a lot like “lustful neighings.” The righteous turn their eyes away from pornography. Many are not ashamed and will not blush when they are overly-exposing themselves. No one is clearly to trick someone into seeing their nakedness, including using intoxicating substances to do that.

Notice also the following:

How is Pornography Harmful?

Frank York, former editor in Public Policy for Focus on the Family (a pro-family political and educational organization) as well as writer and researcher on pornography, and Jan LaRue, Chief Counsel, Concerned Women for America, assert, “The most common damage, the one that affects everyone who views porn, is that it warps the person’s perception of people, relationships, and sex” (2002, p. 14). Pornography teaches unrealistic and inappropriate sexual expectations, decreases satisfaction with monogamy and lowers family loyalties, objectifies and degrades women, links sex with violence and children, encourages promiscuity, and increases susceptibility to sexually acting out in ways harmful to others (Cline, 2002).

Gary R. Brooks (1995), psychologist and assistant chief of the psychology service at the Department of Veteran Affairs in Temple, Texas, calls the affect of pornography on people’s perceptions “The Centerfold Syndrome.” In his book, The Centerfold Syndrome, Dr. Brooks (1995) explains that pornography alters people’s perceptions in the following ways:

  • Voyeurism. Pornography teaches its users to focus on looking at people instead of forming real relationships.
  • Objectification. Men, women, and children are portrayed as sexual objects, whose worth lies in the size and shape of their body parts.
  • Validation. After repeatedly seeing people in an idealized form, pornography users begin to judge people’s worth by their physical attractiveness. They feel masculine or feminine only when they are with beautiful people, and are less likely to be committed when their partner goes through life-changes (age, childbearing, etc.) that decrease their youthfulness or good looks.
  • Trophyism. Romantic partners are trophies to be displayed and owned, not to be treated as real people.
  • Fear of true intimacy. Because people portrayed in pornographic pictures have no demands or expectations beyond sexual-arousal and pleasure, pornography users do not learn how to form real relationships with others. They do not learn how to be selfless, sacrificing, and committed; thus, they come to fear true intimacy that requires them to relate emotionally and spiritually.

The sexual promiscuity encouraged by pornography also increases out-of wedlock pregnancies and the spreading of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) such as human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). Teens are particularly vulnerable to this. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on Public Education (2001): “Adolescents have the highest STD rates. Approximately one fourth of sexually active adolescents become infected with an STD each year, accounting for 3 million cases, and people under the age of 25 account for two thirds of all STDs in the United States” (¶ 2). (Use and Harms of Pornography. http://foreverfamilies.byu.edu/Article.aspx?a=140 viewed 08/25/13)

In pornography, those shown in it, often are falsely implying that they will provide sexual ‘love’ to those who they do not care for at all. Generally speaking (for those not forced into it), they just are in it for the money. They generally have no intention to provide what they pretend.

Pornography , online or otherwise, damages men and women, physically, emotionally, sexually, and spiritually.

Some items of possibly related interest may include:

Pornography: A scourge on society Is pornography harmless fun? Does the Bible teach anything about it? What are the views of some involved with it? A related sermons is titled: Pornography, False Comfort, and False Religion. Here a shorter YouTube video Pornography: Harmless Fun or a Scourge on Society?
Can those in the USA/UK see the Handwriting on the Wall? Is everything fine in the USA/UK or is it like the days of Noah? Can we learn from the handwriting that appeared on a wall thousands of years ago? Here is a link to a related YouTube video Can you see the ‘Handwriting on the Wall’?
What is the Unpardonable Sin? What is it? Can you repent of it? Do you know what it is and how to avoid it?
Making Your Marriage Work Marriage is not also easy, but it pictures a divine relationship. How can you make your marriage work? Here is a link to the video sermon: You Can Make YOUR Marriage Work.
Love, Marriage, and Sex It is important to get them in the right order.
God Created Marriage Some falsely claim that God did not create marriage and that fornication is fine. What does the Bible really teach? Here is a version in Mandarin Chinese 神创造婚姻.
The Ten Commandments Reflect Love, Breaking them is Evil Some feel that the ten commandments are a burden. Is that what Jesus, Paul, Peter, James, and John taught? For a more detailed discussion of the first four commandments, please see the video The Ten Commandments: Loving God. Here is a link to a related article in Mandarin Chinese 十条诫命显示爱,违反诫命的就是邪恶的
The Gospel of the Kingdom of God This free online pdf booklet has answers many questions people have about the Gospel of the Kingdom of God and explains why it is the solution to the issues the world is facing.
When Will the Great Tribulation Begin? 2017, 2018, or 2019? Can the Great Tribulation begin today? What happens before the Great Tribulation in the “beginning of sorrows”? What happens in the Great Tribulation and the Day of the Lord? Is this the time of the Gentiles? When is the earliest that the Great Tribulation can begin? What is the Day of the Lord? Who are the 144,000? Here is a version of the article in the Spanish language: ¿Puede comenzar la Gran Tribulación en 2016 o 2017? ¿Es el Tiempo de los Gentiles? You can also see the English language sermon videos: The Great Tribulation from the Mount of Olives and Can the Great Tribulation begin before 2020? A shorter video is: Will the Great Tribulation Start in 2017?
What is the Meaning of Life? Who does God say is happy? What is your ultimate destiny? Do you really know? Does God actually have a plan for YOU personally? There is also a video titled What is the meaning of your life?