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01/08/07 a.m. Two days ago, some of the world's churches celebrated another holiday that appears to be of pagan origin:

Epiphany a gift that is wrapped in varying meanings

While the Magi are central for Western churches, Jesus' baptism is the focus among the Eastern Orthodox.

Los Angeles Times - Jan 6, 2007

In the Western branch of Christianity generally, Epiphany commemorates the visit of the three wise men from the East, who, "following yonder star," as a hymn says, traversed afar to see baby Jesus and to show their adoration with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.

In some Spanish-speaking countries, Jan. 6 is known as El Dia de los Reyes, or the Day of the Kings.

But in the Eastern Church — composed of about 300 million Orthodox Christians worldwide — Epiphany takes on a more complex theological meaning. The focal point is the baptism of Jesus in the Jordan River and the appearance of the Holy Spirit.

"Epiphany means the manifestation of the Trinity," said the Very Rev. Father Michel Najim, dean of St. Nicholas Antiochian Orthodox Christian Cathedral in Los Angeles. Indeed, like many Orthodox, Najim prefers to refer to Epiphany, which means "revelation," as Theophany, which translates as "manifestation of God."

He emphasized that at Jesus' baptism, the three persons in the Christian conception of God — Father, Son and Holy Spirit —were revealed. The Bible says that when Jesus came up from the water after being baptized by John the Baptist, the heavens opened and the Holy Spirit descended like a dove and alighted on Jesus. When this happened, a voice said, "This is my Son, the Beloved, with whom I am well pleased."

Another view of Epiphany is found among Armenian Orthodox Christians. Jan. 6 is the occasion celebrating Jesus' birth, his baptism and the adoration of the Christ child by the Magi...

One view of how Jan. 6 came to be Epiphany comes from Father John Roll, priest in charge of Assumption Greek Orthodox Church in Long Beach.

The celebration of Epiphany can be traced to Gnosticism, an ancient religious movement that stressed salvation by knowledge, he said in an e-mail response to a query.

"The 6th of January was designated as the feast day of Epiphany, because on that day was the birthday of Aeon, the patron god of Alexandria," according to Roll.

"The Gnostics had designated Christ as one of the Aeons in their elaborate [religious] system. In opposition to these heretics, it appears that the Orthodox Church acted to protect its followers from this falsification by defining the Theophany of the Holy Trinity, that is, the appearance of God during the baptism of Christ," Roll said.

Appropriately for a day that centers on baptism, water plays a key role in some ceremonies observed by Orthodox churches.

"Our tradition is that starting with Epiphany, the priests go to each parishioner's house and bless their home with the sanctified water consecrated during Epiphany," said Charles Ajalat, a member of St. Nicholas Cathedral. "We also bless many material things, such as a new car, with holy water, because Christ has redeemed the entire material world."

Since the trinity is also of non-biblical origin, it is no surprise that the above holiday also has no biblical origin. The heretic Valentinus, who was for a while a Roman Catholic, was into Aeons.

On other matters, the following was on AOL News this morning:

(Jan. 7) - Scientists reported Sunday they had found a plentiful source of stem cells in the fluid that cushions babies in the womb and produced a variety of tissue types from these cells - sidestepping the controversy over destroying embryos for research.

Researchers at Wake Forest University and Harvard University reported the stem cells they drew from amniotic fluid donated by pregnant women hold much the same promise as embryonic stem cells. They reported they were able to extract the stem cells without harm to mother or fetus and turn their discovery into several different tissue cell types, including brain, liver and bone.

As I have long reported on this news page, there has never been a scientific NEED for the destruction of human embryos for stem cell research. Perhaps certain Hollywood and pro-abortion types will finally realize this, as killing human embryos is murder.

01/07/07 a.m. The following news item was of interest:

Revealed: Israel plans nuclear strike on Iran

The Sunday Times - Jan 7, 2007

ISRAEL has drawn up secret plans to destroy Iran’s uranium enrichment facilities with tactical nuclear weapons.

Two Israeli air force squadrons are training to blow up an Iranian facility using low-yield nuclear “bunker-busters”, according to several Israeli military sources.

The attack would be the first with nuclear weapons since 1945, when the United States dropped atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The Israeli weapons would each have a force equivalent to one-fifteenth of the Hiroshima bomb.

Under the plans, conventional laser-guided bombs would open “tunnels” into the targets. “Mini-nukes” would then immediately be fired into a plant at Natanz, exploding deep underground to reduce the risk of radioactive fallout.

“As soon as the green light is given, it will be one mission, one strike and the Iranian nuclear project will be demolished,” said one of the sources.

The plans, disclosed to The Sunday Times last week, have been prompted in part by the Israeli intelligence service Mossad’s assessment that Iran is on the verge of producing enough enriched uranium to make nuclear weapons within two years.

Israeli military commanders believe conventional strikes may no longer be enough to annihilate increasingly well-defended enrichment facilities. Several have been built beneath at least 70ft of concrete and rock. However, the nuclear-tipped bunker-busters would be used only if a conventional attack was ruled out and if the United States declined to intervene, senior sources said.

Israeli and American officials have met several times to consider military action. Military analysts said the disclosure of the plans could be intended to put pressure on Tehran to halt enrichment, cajole America into action or soften up world opinion in advance of an Israeli attack.

Some analysts warned that Iranian retaliation for such a strike could range from disruption of oil supplies to the West to terrorist attacks against Jewish targets around the world.

Israel has identified three prime targets south of Tehran which are believed to be involved in Iran’s nuclear programme:

While I do not know if the Israelis actually will do that, I do believe that Iran will NOT be the future king of the South, and that type of attack would probably assure that from a carnal perspective.

On other matters, there is a new COG--it is mentioned on the GCG-related news page.

01/06/07 a.m. The lead article in the latest edition of COGaic's Vision by Michael McKinny states:

Humpty Dumpty would have us believe that no truth exists outside of what we can create from our perceptions. Alice was certainly right to question him, for ultimately truth must come from a single source.

In the Gospel of John, Jesus states that God’s Word is truth. For many people, however, the Bible and God are not an aid to clarity but a nuisance to be circumvented. Nobody likes being told what to do.

It’s easy, therefore, to put ourselves in the driver’s seat and distance ourselves from the truth. The array of choices is tantalizing. But it is also exhausting and disconnecting. With more choices and options, we have less meaning. Like rafts adrift on the open sea, armed only with the language of the self, we have no way of connecting with each other. We are alone. Is there a universally applicable truth by which we can connect? Is it revealed by our Creator as the Bible claims?

We need a starting point from which we can order our lives. We can’t make lasting connections with momentary feelings and emotions. Without truth at our center, our civilization will certainly decline.

But that decline will not be stemmed by looking at the Bible in the way we always have. It’s easy to find institutions that have espoused the legitimacy of the Bible yet have failed in many ways to practice its moral teaching. These institutions have very often misrepresented the Bible’s meaning and intent.

The Bible is synergistic, and it must be viewed as a whole. Its truths work together as an integrated system. It is a complete program, a way of life. In the West, religion has mostly taken from the Bible piecemeal, quite often replacing the instruction of the Scriptures with traditions and practices from other religions. The Old and New Testaments warn against adding to or taking away from God’s Word.

Interestingly, the Bible says that understanding comes through practicing biblical instruction as a way of life. How many have really read the pages of the Bible? In doing so, how many have let the Bible speak for itself? And how many have gone one step further and really applied and tested its truths, ideas, principles and commands in their own life?

Several articles of related interest may include:

What is the Meaning of Life? What is your ultimate destiny?
Read the Bible Christians should read the Bible. This article gives some rationale for regular bible reading.
What is the Appropriate Form of Biblical Interpretation? Should the Bible be literally understood? What do the writings of the Bible, Origen, Herbert Armstrong, and Augustine show?
Lies Where did they originate? What was really the first lie? What happens for lies?

01/05/07 a.m. In the January edition of UCG's World News & Prophecy, John Ross Schroeder listed what he called Five Significant Trends of 2006. Here is his list:

Number one: The erosion of American power
Number two: The emerging resurgence of Russia
Number three: The rise of aggressive atheism
Number four: The intense vilification of Israel
Number five: The onslaught of sex outside of marriage

While I would have had a somewhat different list (continued moral decline would probably have been number 2, and I would have added certain prophecy-related moves by Pope Benedict XVI), he does mention some of the negative trends of 2006.

01/04/07 a.m. CGOM's Jan-Feb 2007 edition of Outreach reported:

website requests up 15%, with an average 1247 'hits' each day: a total of 455,366
1-800 calls up 4% (to November)
regular mail down 17%
active mailing list 5359: up 8%

CGOM is essentially a CGI split and consists somewhat as a confederation of independents. An article of related interest may be Church of God Outreach Ministries.

On other matters, I spoke with Dibar Apartian yesterday regarding something attributed to him on the internet. He knew HWA for the past 30 plus years of HWA's life. Dibar Apartian clearly and flatly denied the claim someone made that Dibar Apartian said he felt that HWA was guilty of incest. Every single time I have gone to the alleged sources of information on this incest matter, none of these "sources" have ever stood by the statements that the anti-HWA critics have claimed were made. I would like to add that Dibar Apartian is 88 1/2 years old and he specifically told me that it should be clear to everyone that he has nothing to gain by denying this. Dibar Apartian also told me that he has never once made a statement confirming any of HWA's alleged personal faults, and specifically that he never stated that he thought HWA was guilty of incest.

This and other information is contained in the article 15 Accusations and Truthful Responses about Herbert W. Armstrong.

01/03/07 a.m. The following news item was of interest:

Deutsche Welle - Jan 2, 2007

Germany's growing economic, political and military role is under the spotlight in 2007 with Berlin holding the rotating presidencies of both the European Union and the G8 club of industrial nations.

Chancellor Angela Merkel takes the reins of the European Union for the first half of 2007, with the main goal of saving the EU's failed constitution and hammering out a new energy security policy for the 27-nation bloc...


Germany is at the core of the euro single-currency zone and the European Central Bank is building a huge new headquarters in Frankfurt. Major German corporations have adeptly ridden the wave of globalization and exports have continued to soar during 2006, with the euro hitting near-record highs against the dollar. Even the sometimes euro-skeptical Wall Street Journal was full of praise in a recent commentary. 


"The competition brought on by globalization and the EU's expansion to include 10 new states in 2004 forced a serious restructuring of the corporate sector," the paper said. "… Germany Inc. was at the forefront of this mini-revolution."

We in the COGs have long taught that Germany would lead a united Europe (see Europa and the Beast).

Pat Robertson made the news with predictions again:

Robertson Predicts 'Mass Killing'

Associated Press - Jan 2, 2007 

In what has become an annual tradition of prognostications, religious broadcaster Pat Robertson predicted Tuesday that a terrorist attack on the United States would result in "mass killing" late in 2007.

"I'm not necessarily saying it's going to be nuclear," he said during his news-and-talk television show "The 700 Club" on the Christian Broadcasting Network. "The Lord didn't say nuclear. But I do believe it will be something like that."

Robertson said God told him during a recent prayer retreat that major cities and possibly millions of people will be affected by the attack, which should take place sometime after September.

One year he may get it right if he keeps at it. Perhaps even this year. But I absolutely do not believe that God is telling him.

The following disturbing news item was reported yesterday:

Ukrainian churches urge curbs on Jehovah's Witnesses ENI - Jan 2, 2007

Warsaw (ENI). Churches in Ukraine have demanded government action against Jehova's Witnesses after accusing them of insulting mainstream faiths in the country. "We appeal to you to exercise state control in accordance with current legislation on freedom of conscience," leaders of the Roman Catholic and Orthodox churches said in a joint open letter to officials in the western Lviv region, published by Ukraine's Religious Information Service (RISU). "This letter in no way infringes the rights and freedoms of Jehovah's Witnesses," they said. "But it is an attempt to defend rights given by God and the state, as well as the dignity of our parishioners." http://www.eni.ch/

Be not deceived, the Beast power will enforce a variety of laws in order to support the Roman and Eastern Orthodox Catholics. And Catholic leaders have long influenced the secular powers to persecute groups like the JWs and the COGs.

On other matters, I ran across a Calvinist argument for Sunday and thought that I would share it here, after I provide a little background:

The first clear reference to those professing Christ meeting on Sunday was from the philosopher Justin Martyr around 150 A.D.

His statement is often translated as,

...on the day called Sunday (Justin Martyr.  The First Apology.  Chapter LXVII. Text edited by Alexander Roberts and James Donaldson and first published in Edinburgh, 1867. Additional introductionary material and notes provided for the American edition by A. Cleveland Coxe 1886. Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, reprint 2001).

The actual Greek expression Justin used was, τῇ τοῦ ῾Ηλίου λεγομένη ἡμέρᾳThe terms he used were ἡμέρᾳ which means day, Ηλίου is considered to mean Sun (although it is the term for the sun god Helios), and λεγομένη currently means said. Thus Justin literally stated "on the day said {of} Helios" or more awkwardly"on the Helios said day".

Justin's Greek comment demonstrates that the term Κυριακήν was not then the common Greek word for Sunday. If any of you reading this article are Sunday supporters and believe that you should rely on the teachings of Justin Martyr, you may wish to read the article Justin Martyr: Saint or Heretic and Apostate?

But why Sunday?

In one place, Justin gives two reasons:

We hold our common assembly on the day of the sun, because it is the first day, on which God put to flight darkness and chaos and made the world, and on the same day Jesus Christ our saviour rose from the dead (Justin Martyr.  The First Apology.  Chapter LXVII. Text edited by H. Betteson and C. Maunder. Documents of the Early Church, 3rd ed. Oxford University Press, Oxford, 1999, p.73).

This poses two problems as the Bible disagrees with both of those positions.

Regarding the first, notice that the seventh day Sabbath is observed because of the entire creation, not Sunday, as the Bible shows:

For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it (Exodus 20:11).

Furthermore, as odd as this will sound, Justin claimed that Sunday worship was ordained because circumcision was on the eighth day after the birth of Hebrew males in the Old Testament:

Now, sirs," I said, "it is possible for us to show how the eighth day possessed a certain mysterious import, which the seventh day did not possess, and which was promulgated by God through these rites...there is now another covenant, and another law has gone forth from Zion. Jesus Christ circumcises all who will--as was declared above--with knives of stone; that they may be a righteous nation, a people keeping faith, holding to the truth, and maintaining peace (Dialogue with Trypho. Chapter XXIV).

The average person who worships on Sunday probably does not wish to believe that this is what Sunday is based on, but this eighth day logic is what the first Sunday references base its superiority on.

Hence, both the heretical Epistle of Barnabas and the heretic Justin Martyr actually teach that Sunday worship for Christians is wrapped up in a theology involving the eighth day, which they claim is the still the first day, but preferred as it comes after the seventh day. The idea of the eighth day being of value originated with the Greek philosophers and was later adopted by Gnostic heretics.

But that is where a lot of early support for Sunday worship originated.

The Eighth Day Foretold?

However, as an apparent effort to look for justification for "eighth day" worship, notice what the following Calvinist "catechism" states:

Q. 11. Under what name or designation is the Christian Sabbath foretold in the Old Testament?

A. Under the name of the EIGHTH DAY, Ezek. 43:27 -- "And when these days are expired, it shall be that upon the EIGHTH DAY, and so forward, the priests shall make your burnt offerings upon the altar, and your peace offerings: and I will accept you, Saith the Lord."

Q. 12. Why called the eighth day?

A. Because the first day of the week now, is the eighth in order from the creation. (THE SHORTER CATECHISM EXPLAINED. The Center for Reformed Theology and Apologetics. http://www.reformed.org/master/index.html?mainframe=/documents/fisher/q059.html 01/02/07).

Is Ezekiel prophesying Sunday, or is he talking about something else? Notice the context of what Ezekiel wrote:

18 And He said to me, "Son of man, thus says the Lord GOD: 'These are the ordinances for the altar on the day when it is made, for sacrificing burnt offerings on it, and for sprinkling blood on it. 19 You shall give a young bull for a sin offering to the priests, the Levites, who are of the seed of Zadok, who approach Me to minister to Me,' says the Lord GOD. 20 You shall take some of its blood and put it on the four horns of the altar, on the four corners of the ledge, and on the rim around it; thus you shall cleanse it and make atonement for it. 21 Then you shall also take the bull of the sin offering, and burn it in the appointed place of the temple, outside the sanctuary. 22 On the second day you shall offer a kid of the goats without blemish for a sin offering; and they shall cleanse the altar, as they cleansed it with the bull. 23 When you have finished cleansing it, you shall offer a young bull without blemish, and a ram from the flock without blemish. 24 When you offer them before the LORD, the priests shall throw salt on them, and they will offer them up as a burnt offering to the LORD. 25 Every day for seven days you shall prepare a goat for a sin offering; they shall also prepare a young bull and a ram from the flock, both without blemish. 26 Seven days they shall make atonement for the altar and purify it, and so consecrate it. 27 When these days are over it shall be, on the eighth day and thereafter, that the priests shall offer your burnt offerings and your peace offerings on the altar; and I will accept you,' says the Lord GOD." (Ezekiel 43:18-27).

Even a cursory reading of the above should make it clear to normal people that Ezekiel was not prophesying that the Seventh-day Sabbath would be changed to Sunday. But this is the type of argument that Sunday is actually based upon.

This is all now in the article Sunday and Christianity.

01/02/07 a.m. The Jan-Feb 2007 issue of WCG's Together (the renamed Worldwide News) has the following statements:

In our detailed examination of the Bible, we did not find any scripture that forbids women from being recognized as spiritual leaders in the church; there is no verse that makes a permanent restriction on women...

In the Worldwide Church of God, selection of elders and pastors should be based on seeking out the best person to fill the responsibility, according to the principles in the Scriptures, the needs of the congregation, how the congregation sees these issues, the cultural environment, and whom God can be seen using, without regard to whether the candidate is male or female...

Not wanting to forbid what the Bible does not forbid, and desiring to allow all our members to use their God-given gifts to their fullest potential for the benefit of the church, our denominational position is that, based on local circumstances and an individual’s characteristics, women may be ordained as elders and appointed as pastors.

WCG apparently uses a different Bible than we in the COGs do, or simply has great difficulty in accepting what it says. Notice the following:

Let your women keep silent in the churches, for they are not permitted to speak; but they are to be submissive, as the law also says. And if they want to learn something, let them ask their own husbands at home; for it is shameful for women to speak in church. (1 Corinthians 14:34-35).

Let a woman learn in silence with all submission. And I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man, but to be in silence. (1 Timothy 2:11-12).

Thus, the New Testament does not support the concept of women preaching sermons in, or to be a pastor over, a church. An article of related interest may be Women and the New Testament Church.

On other matters, the government of Iran is announcing an unusual prophecy:

Mahdi will defeat archenemy in Jerusalem

State media says, ‘Shiite messiah will kill archenemy in Jerusalem, could come during spring equinox'

Ynet News - Dec 31, 2006

A triumphal religious prophecy has appeared on an Iranian official state media website, heralding the return of the Shiite messiah. According to the website, "Imam Mahdi (may God hasten his reappearance) will appear all of a sudden on the world scene with a voice from the skies announcing his reappearance at the holy Ka'ba in Mecca."The Islamic Republic of Iran broadcasting (IRIB) website said in a program called 'The World Towards Illumination,' that the Mahdi will reappear in Mecca and form an army to defeat Islam's enemies in a series of apocalyptic battles, in which the Mahdi will overcome his archvillain in Jerusalem. The series has been regularly updated throughout November and December. "The Mahdi's far sightedness and firmness in the face of mischievous elements will strike awe. After his uprising from Mecca all of Arabia will be submit to him and then other parts of the world as he marches upon Iraq and established his seat of global government in the city of Kufa. “Then the Imam will send 10 thousand of his forces to the east and west to uproot the oppressors. At this time God will facilitate things for him and lands will come under his control one after the other," the website declared. "After his appearance the Imam would remain in Mecca for some time, and then go to Medina... a descendant of the Prophet's archenemy Abu Sofyan will seize Syria and attack Iraq and the Hejaz with the ferocity of a beast… finally Imam Mahdi sends troops who kill the Sofyani in Beit ol-Moqaddas (Jerusalem), the Islamic holy city in Palestine that is currently under occupation of the Zionists," the IRIB added.

'Jesus will be Mahdi's lieutenant'

According to the Iranian series, the Mahdi will reappear on earth with Jesus: "We read in the book Tazkarat ol-Olia, 'the Mahdi will come with Jesus son of Mary accompanying him.' …Imam Mahdi will be the leader while Prophet Jesus will act as his lieutenant in the struggle against oppression and establishment of justice in the world. Jesus had himself given the tidings of the coming of God's last messenger and will see Mohammad's ideals materialize in the time of the Mahdi."

Obviously this will not happen, but some day, Moslems will accept another leader (who will come without Jesus) and perhaps that leader will be the biblically prophesied king of the South.

01/01/07 a.m. The evangelical crowd may wish to notice the "prophecies" that "God" told Pat Robertson would occur in calendar year 2006, which officially ended last night:

Pat Robertson says God told him storms, possibly tsunami, will hit U.S. in 2006

San Diego Union-Tribune

Associated Press - May 17, 2006

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. – In another in a series of notable pronouncements, religious broadcaster Pat Robertson says God told him storms and possibly a tsunami will hit America's coastline this year.

Robertson has made the predictions at least four times in the past two weeks on his news-and-talk television show “The 700 Club” on the Christian Broadcasting Network, which he founded.

Robertson said the revelations about this year's weather came to him during his annual personal prayer retreat in January.

If I heard the Lord right about 2006, the coasts of America will be lashed by storms,” Robertson said May 8. On Wednesday, he added, “There well may be something as bad as a tsunami in the Pacific Northwest.”

Robertson has come under intense criticism in recent months for suggesting that American agents should assassinate Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and that Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's stroke was divine retribution for Israel's pullout from the Gaza Strip                                                          http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/nation/20060517-2051-robertson-storms.html

Hurricane season 2006 ends peacefully

Alaska Report - Dec 3, 2006

Miami, FL - The 2006 Atlantic hurricane season ended last week without a single hurricane striking the United States

I have never considered that Pat Robertson was a true prophet (nor have I accepted that the self-proclaimed prophets, like PCG's Gerald Flurry or CGPFK's Ron Weinland are true prophets either) nor do I believe he "hears the Lord right". This does not mean that bad storms (and ones worse than ever before) will not hit the USA, only that Pat Robertson is not a reliable source for such predictions.

The top ten viewed articles at the COGwriter site for December 2006 were as follows:

  1. Why Not the Restored Church of God? This group, led by David Pack, claims to be the most faithful. The information in this article suggests otherwise.
  2. History of Early Christianity Are you aware that what most people believe is not what truly happened to the true Christian church?
  3. Makeup and the Philadelphia Era of the COG Some consider makeup to be a doctrine more significant than proclaiming the Gospel; are they right or focused on a twig?
  4. Brief Article on Church of God-Preparing for the Kingdom of God This is Ronald Weinland's group. He claims to be one of the two witnesses.
  5. Differences between the Living Church of God and United Church of God This article provides quotes information from the two largest groups which had their origins in WCG as well as commentary.
  6. What Does the Catholic Church Teach About Christmas and the Holy Days? Do you know what the Catholic Church says were the original Christian holy days? Was Christmas among them?
  7. Church of God, Seventh Day: History and Teachings Nearly all COG's I am aware of trace their history through this group. Do you know much about them?
  8. Some Similarities and Differences Between the Orthodox Church and the Churches of God Both groups have some amazing similarities and some major differences. Do you know what they are?
  9. Polycarp of Smyrna Polycarp was the successor of the Apostle John and a major leader in Asia Minor. Do you know much about what he taught?
  10. Teachings Unique to the Philadelphia Church of God Simply calling oneself 'Philadelphia' does not make one so (see Revelation 3:7-9). This article provides quotes from this group which claims to be faithful.

This is the first month that the makeup article has been in the top ten. That article, like most in the top ten, were also updated during December.

12/31/06 a.m. Yesterday, a reader of this page forwarded me a copy of the following emails:

Dec 26, 2006

Dear Mr. Stephen Flurry: 

I'm currently reading your new book, "Raising the Ruins", and find it to be very interesting. I have a question and would appreciate a personal reply from you. You mention on page 73 about the omissions made by the WCG in MOA. In your (PCG's 2003) edition of MOA, you omit on page 245 (from the original 1985 MOA) the following... "No prophets are mentioned as having either administrative, executive or preaching functions in the New Testament Church."  Why was this omitted by the Philadelphia Church of God? 

Thank you for your personal reply

.----Reply Dec 27, 2006

We removed that sentence from the 2003 version because we teach that there is a prophet guiding the Church today who also serves an administrative and executive position within the Church. Up until Mr. Armstrong’s death, that had not been the case, as he stated on page 245. But in 1986, the circumstances in God’s Church changed. Hope that helps. Glad you are enjoying the book. 

Stephen Flurry

 --Dec 27, 2006 
Dear Mr. Stephen Flurry:
Thank you for your prompt response. Were there any other omissions,
in your 2003 MOA book? Thanks again for your reply. 
Reply Dec 27, 2006

We made a couple of edits to references to the 20th century:
On page 298, when Mr. Armstrong talked about what would happen in the
latter days, we omitted the following line: "...actually within the next
two decades-this last half of the twentieth century!" That, of course,
has since passed.
On page 99, where Mr. Armstrong asked, "Can human life on earth survive
even through the short remainder of this twentieth century?" we changed
it to: "Can human life on earth survive past this present generation?"

While I appreciate the candor apparently from Stephen Flurry , PCG should state in its MOA book that it has been edited by PCG as to not do so is misleading at best.

Furthermore, PCG makes some true and some unusual claims about Herbert Armstrong's book the Mystery of the Ages:

The number one reason listed in the Pastor General's Report for discontinuing Mystery of the Ages was COST! That's right--COST! Now that is spiritual FRAUD! How could the WCG afford to donate $200,000 and more to various relief funds, and yet be unable to afford to print God's inspired words?! (Flurry, Gerald. Malachi's Message to God's Church Today. Booklet. 1995. p.129.).

Although I agree that WCG did not discontinue because of cost, it seems quite presumptuous to state that the Mystery of the Ages are "God's inspired words".

However, since PCG claims that MOA contains "God's inspired words" how can they change it and retain credibility?

The actual answer is that they cannot.

They can only do that because Gerald Flurry has exalted himself above where he should and those in PCG sadly go along with it.

More on PCG is in the article Teachings Unique to the Philadelphia Church of God.

Speaking of PCG, I again want to remind readers of this page that in spite of what Iran now says or does, it is not the future king of the South. Furthermore, in spite of Ethiopia's current military adventures, it too (in contrast to RCG's teachings) is also not the future king of the South.

Tonight most of the world will celebrate New Year's which essentially finishes out the Saturnalia (Christmas). New Year's day did not become a holy day for the Roman Catholic Church until 487 A.D. An article of related interest may be January 1st: Is this a Date to Celebrate?

Since those truly associated with the true Church of God will not be participating in the world's observance tonight, perhaps you may wish to learn more about The History of Early Christianity.

12/30/06 a.m. The Dow-Jones Industrial average closed yesterday approximately 1,765 points higher than it began calendar year 2006 and Saddam Hussein was hung last night.

However, US debt increased to its highest levels of all-time.

And while I have no doubt that SH deserved the death penalty, I agree with the late John Ogwyn who wrote that Iraq would split into three pieces--one controlled by the Kurds, another by the Sunnis, and another by the Shia.

MSNBC reported:

BEIJING - China's population of Internet users has risen by 30 percent over the past year to 132 million, a state news agency said Friday".            AP, Dec 29, 2006    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/16392877/

This is good as those in China may be able to learn about the COG. On a somewhat related note, I hope that the Chinese (and others) find the following articles of interest:

China, Its Biblical Past and Future, Part 1: Genesis and Chinese Characters This article provides information showing that the Chinese peoples must have known about various accounts in the Book of Genesis up until their dispersion after the Tower of Babel.
China, Its Biblical Past and Future, Part 2: The Sabbath and Some of God's Witness in China When did Christianity first come to China? And is there early evidence that they observed the seventh day sabbath?
China, Its Biblical Past and Future, Part 3: China in Prophecy What is Ahead for China? What will happen to nearly all the Chinese?
The Dramatic Story of Chinese Sabbathkeepers This reformattedGood News article from 1955 discusses Sabbath-keeping in China in the 1800s.

Last night, ICG's Mark Armstrong wrote:

A lot of calls have been coming in regarding the publication of a book featuring a large photograph of my Grandfather, Herbert W. Armstrong on the cover.  I am being asked about my reaction to the theme of the book, and to some specific references it apparently makes.  The short answer is that I have a problem with the premise of the book, which is apparent at a glance.  How much time should be devoted to the subject is difficult to appraise right now.  It is something of a diversion from the tasks at hand, but certainly it is necessarily to respond to those among our own number who call to ask questions or express concern.

I presume he is referring to PCG's Stephen Flurry's book (it was discussed in the previous edition of this page).

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Volume 10, issue 32 COG writer B. Thiel (c) 2006 2007