July 31, 2008

Greetings from Charlotte, 

This week, the euobserver.com website reported that 37% of European business respondents would like to see Tony Blair become the new President of the EU—a position to be created by the Lisbon Treaty—23% favored German Chancellor Angela Merkel and 12% mentioned Luxembourg’s Prime Minister, Jean-Claude Junker.  Another report stated that the Irish government is considering holding a second referendum next fall on the Lisbon Treaty—in spite of the fact that 64% of the Irish would vote NO and 71% do not want to vote again on the issue!  These will be issues to watch.  Here in Charlotte, Mr. Meredith has recorded more lectures for his Living University class and Mr. Apartian just taped his weekly French sermon for the French-speaking congregations worldwide; his sermon was titled, “All or Nothing.” My son, Scott Winnail, spent several days in Charlotte recording a sermon and lectures for his LU class. Reports from those coming home from the Michigan summer camp are very positive.  Fall semester classes for Living University will begin on August 13.  If you are planning to take a class, you will need to register soon.  Remember that scholarships are available for members of the Living Church of God—check the Living University website for information on Financial Aid. 

Church Administration 

Upcoming Public Bible Lectures  

Mr. Bob League will be presenting two public Bible lectures in Chattanooga, Tennessee this weekend and next, August 2 and August 9. In his lectures, Mr. League will speak on prophecy and the true Gospel and on the true Christian Sabbath. Approximately 4,800 subscribers and members have been invited to attend these presentations; your prayers for their success are much appreciated.  

Spanish Update 

The third volume of the anthology of Living Church of God reprint articles in Spanish was distributed last week by e-mail to all Spanish-speaking congregations. In addition, the Spanish translation of the seventh lesson of the Living Leadership Course has been completed and is being made available to the Spanish congregations this week.  

South Africa Update 

Mr. Christo Botha, South Africa Regional Office Manager, reports that our Tomorrow’s World magazine mailing list there currently stands at more than 8,850. This represents an increase of more than 6,850 subscribers in just 22 months. In addition, the South African office is mailing, on average, 1,070 literature items, such as booklets and Bible Study Course lessons, per month.  

The Afrikaans language website is also producing good fruit, with an average of 1,768 items being read, printed or downloaded, as well as 102 literature requests being submitted, per month. The Work in South Africa is being supported by 224 co-workers and donors. 

Tomorrow’s World on YouTube 

As a personal initiative, one of our Church members started uploading our Tomorrow’s World television programs on YouTube in March 2007. He reports that the videos he has uploaded to his non-official personal YouTube site “have now surpassed one million views! We are also approaching 1,000 subscribers, who get email messages each time a new video is uploaded to the site. We have had several ‘go-tos’ from people who first saw the program on YouTube.” 

Feast of Tabernacles 2008 

Festival Assistance for Brethren in Third World Countries 

Every year pastors are approached by members who have extra second tithe that they would like to share with other members who have needs.  Many of our brethren in Third World countries have low incomes from which to save second tithe and this limits the funds they have to keep the Feast. Some of you, if you anticipate having extra second tithe, after paying your tithe of the tithe for festival needs in the U.S., and would like to share with brethren in third world areas to help them enjoy the Feast, you can send a check to the office in Charlotte made out to “International Festival Fund.”  We will then disburse assistance from that fund to areas where it is needed.  Thank you in advance for your help.  

Behind the Work 2008 

Production of the Behind the Work 2008 film continues. The completion of this film is expected on August 18; its translation into French and Spanish will then follow and we anticipate mailing it to all Feast sites soon after. This year we expect to have about 43 Feast of Tabernacles sites in 30 countries.  

Internet Department 

Internet Update: Bible Study Course in 96 Countries

We now have students in 96 countries enrolled online in the 24-lesson Tomorrow’s World Bible Study Course!  Slovenia and the Netherlands Antilles are the most recent countries added to this list.  Ten percent of those enrolling in the course online report that they first found out about the course from a friend.  Your words and actions can and do have an impact in bringing others into contact with God’s Work (Matthew 5:14).

Much material was gathered at the LYC camp in Michigan for the youth website.  Photographs and new content from camp will begin appearing on the site in the coming week, as those involved unpack their bags and catch their breath.  Additionally, the finishing touches are now being applied to the Church website – www.lcg.org.  The new design will be published on August 15.—J. Charles Ogwyn 


Prepare for the Future!  Jesus admonished His disciples to “seek first the kingdom of God” (Matthew 6:33).  The Scriptures state that the saints will reign as kings and priests (civil and religious leaders) with Jesus Christ in the Kingdom of God (Revelation 5:10).  Bible prophecies also reveal the saints will be teachers in Tomorrow’s World (Isaiah 30:20-21) who will explain the laws of God and His way of life to all people (Isaiah 2:2-4).  However, you cannot teach what you don’t know and have not proven to be true.  Down through history, God has prepared and trained human instruments to accomplish His purpose.  God personally taught Abraham.  Moses was educated as a prince in Egypt and “was learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians” (Acts 7:22)—and then received 40 years of additional training by God to prepare him for his role.  Daniel’s education included learning “the language and literature of the Chaldeans” (Daniel 1:4).  Ezra “had prepared his heart to seek the Law of the LORD… and to teach statutes and ordinances in Israel” when the Jews returned from captivity in Babylon (Ezra 7:10).  As a child of twelve, Jesus astonished religious leaders with His knowledge of the Scriptures (Luke 2:41-47).  The Apostle Paul received much of his education before God began to use him in the Work (Acts 22:3; Galatians 1:14).  Part of the mission of God’s Church today is to “make ready a people prepared for the Lord” (Luke 1:17).  This is why we publish literature, why we prepared the Bible Study Course and why we offer Living University classes—to train teachers for the exciting roles in the Kingdom of God.  Are you taking advantage of the opportunities that God is providing now—to prepare for the future?       

Have a profitable Sabbath,

Douglas S. Winnail

News and Prophecy—July 31, 2008

Egyptian Gold and Silver, Again!  For thousands of years, Egypt was known for its rich gold treasures and a thirst for gold and silver that could not be quenched. At one point, the nation of Judah was even forced to pay tribute to Egypt in gold and silver (2 Kings 23:33). Today, Egypt is not only looking for gold again under its soil, but is successfully mining it! In 2009, Egypt expects to extract 8 tons of gold—some from mines that have not been worked in 2,000 years. An Egyptian official in Cairo stated, “Once this mine is fully operational, it won't be only one of the biggest in Africa, but rather one of the biggest worldwide…We are also looking at concessions for silver and other materials” (Reuters, July 14, 2008). God prophesied that at the time of the end the King of the North would enter the “Glorious Land” (the Holy Land) pursuing the King of the South. He said that even “the land of Egypt shall not escape,” and that the King of the North will have power over “the treasures of gold and silver, and over all the precious things of Egypt” (Daniel 11:40-43). Egypt’s re-opening of gold and silver mining will not only bolster its economy and enhance its power on the world scene, it will play into the fulfillment of prophecy at the end of the age!

The Pope Moves “Back to the Future.” Nearly 40 years ago, the Catholic Church effectively banned the Latin Mass to make people feel more a part of the liturgy. In recent years, the Pope has made the Latin Mass an “option” for Catholic parishes. Now, the Latin Mass “is to be reintroduced into every Roman Catholic parish….” When asked if the Latin Mass would be celebrated in many parishes in the future, the Pope’s senior spokesman stated, “Not in many parishes, all parishes.” This move will achieve the Pope’s wish for the Latin Mass and the “revised” (modern-language) Mass to exist side by side (Sunday Telegraph, June 15, 2008). But how long will it be before the Latin Mass totally replaces the “side-by-side” Mass? The current Pope Benedict XVI is focused on returning the Catholic Church to a more conservative time—a time when the Pope had greater power and influence over the church as a whole, and Europe in general. The Scriptures reveal that at the time of the end harlot daughters will return to their mother church. In addition, this church will grow in power and influence on the world scene (see Revelation 17). The Pope and his Vatican counselors are preparing the Roman church for a much greater role in the future (v. 18). Reinstituting the Latin Mass will force people to worship under the church’s power, while they are kept ignorant by not understanding the church’s teachings.

“The British Lion Roars No More.” So this is how it ends: not with a roar, but a wimper.  “The most senior judge in England has declared that Islamic legal principles in Sharia law may be used within the Muslim communities in Britain to settle marital arguments and regulate finance.  Lord Chief Justice Lord Phillips said, ‘Those entering into a contractual agreement can agree that the agreement shall be governed by a law other than English law.’ And so the English who gave us the Magna Carta in 1215, William Blackstone and the foundation of American law are slowly succumbing to the dictates of intolerant Islam and sowing seeds of their own destruction.  It is impossible to reconcile this antiquated “law” with English law, so what could Lord Phillips mean when he says that Sharia law can be used in Muslin communities as long as such laws comply with English law?   This will mean English law must become subordinate to Sharia law” (Denton Record-Chronicle, July 14, 2008).  God warned Israel and her descendents that in the latter times He would give her “leaders” over to morally unprincipled and depraved minds. “And even as they did not like [or think it worthwhile] to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting” (Romans 1:28).  British Muslims’ real objective appears to be the domination of England, not assimilation.  If Lord Phillips’ opinion becomes the law of England, he may have signed the death warrant for his nation.  It’s one thing to fight a war and lose it.  It’s quite another to willingly surrender without a struggle.”—Gary Stein, Dan Bennett and Scott Winnail

COGwriter 2008

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