25 August 2011

Greetings from Charlotte,

This week, the east coast of the United States near Richmond, Virginia was rattled by a 5.8 earthquake for the first time in 67 years. This coming weekend, the eastern seaboard of the U.S. is bracing for a major hurricane packing winds of more than 100 miles per hour. At the same time these events are happening, major “financial earthquakes” threaten Europe, America and the global economy—as ancient biblical prophecies continue to come alive! Here in Charlotte, Mr. Meredith has been writing a Tomorrow’s World article and he chaired a Living University Board meeting. Mr. and Mrs. Ames have returned from the U.K., where they visited ministers, brethren and a number of congregations (see report below), and Dr. and Mrs. Wil Pierre have returned safely from a very positive trip to Haiti and the Dominican Republic. Mr. Mario Her nandez is currently visiting congregations in South America. Mr. Wayne Pyle reports that last week’s television program by Mr. Meredith entitled, “How to Watch World Events,” should draw more than 5,000 responses. The Tomorrow’s World Special Presentations last weekend in Peoria and Springfield, Illinois, by Mr. Rod McNair, resulted in a total of 47 visitors (see report below). This weekend I will be in New Orleans, Louisiana and Biloxi, Mississippi for TWSPs. Your prayers for these efforts to reach God’s chosen people are much appreciated.—DSW

Church Administration

Tomorrow’s World Special Presentations

Peoria and Springfield, Illinois: To answer the famous question known across the United States, “Will it play in Peoria?,” the answer for the Tomorrow’s World Special Presentations is a resounding “Yes!” Twenty-three guests and 28 members attended the Peoria Special Presentation on August 20 given by Mr. Rod McNair. At the next day’s presentation in Springfield, the Illinois state capital, the attendance was virtually matched with 24 guests and 25 members present. Brethren from Chicago and St. Louis joined the local members to add support for the Special Presentations. We are very grateful for the hard work that our staff at HQ accomplished for these presentations! We are now eagerly looking forward to this weekend when the follow-up presentations will give all those who a ttend the opportunity to really understand how they can determine where is God’s true Church.

Mr. and Mrs. Ames’ London Church Visit

Nearly 70 enthusiastic brethren from 16 countries joined together in welcoming Mr. and Mrs. Ames last Sabbath. Some diligent families drove more than five hours to be with us at this special celebration. Seeing (and hearing) the warm greetings, even before getting completely out of the car, Mrs. Ames said she already knew she was going to really appreciate them! Mr. Ames used the sermonette time to bring us up-to-date news of the Work, and then he gave a powerful sermon on prayer. Following the service, the ladies provided a sumptuous table overflowing with a large variety of delicious international snacks. Mr. and Mrs. Ames were kept busy in stimulating and animated conversation for almost two hours as the fellowship flowed!—Rick Stafford

Fort Lauderdale Summer Picnic

Seventy-three brethren joined in a truly millennial setting on Sunday, August 21, for delightful fellowship, beach games, swimming, and a delicious picnic lunch at the beautiful “Spanish River State Park” near Boca Raton, Florida. The picnic was a very special opportunity for our growing congregation to strengthen friendships, as well as make new friends with the many new brethren whom God has been calling in this area. We are very thankful that God blessed us with good weather and with good food, but most of all we give thanks to God for the wonderful fellowship and the joyful service that were evident throughout the day. Many of the brethren commented that we had so much fun, that next time we need to “expand” our picnic into a “family weekend” and invite our brethren from around the country to join us! God-willing, we will be able to do this, and perhaps some of you will be able to join us in South Florida next year.—Wyatt Ciesielka

Living Youth Camp
With our summer camp program retreating into our memories, don’t forget the chance to meet your friends, new and old, on Sunday evenings at our On-Line Bible Study. We are continuing our study of the history of the patriarchs. There are many important lessons we can learn from what God has recorded for us in His Word. To show up for this week’s study, just go to the Living Youth website (www.livingyouth.org ) and click on the “On-Line Bible Study” icon on the bottom of the page. The Bible Study begins at 7:30 p.m., Eastern Standard Time, with the room opening up for chatting at 7:00 p.m. See you there!—Jonathan McNair

Feast of Tabernacles 2011
Festival (Second Tithe) Assistance Requests

We have finished processing Festival Assistance requests, and notification letters (regarding whether we have been able to provide assistance, and, if applicable, the amount) are being sent to those who requested assistance.


The Age of Skeptics: The Apostle Peter warned that in the last days “scoffers will come” who would ridicule biblical ideas such as Jesus Christ’s promise to return (2 Peter 3:3-4). Today, skeptics publish books and articles that refer to people who believe in God and the Bible as people who believe in “The God Delusion,” and openly claim that “God is not Great.” This modern skepticism fosters an attitude of disrespect for authority figures such as parents, teachers, government officials, policemen and even religious leaders. Christians must be careful that these critical attitudes in society do not spill over into the Church and affect our attitudes toward the leaders and members of the Body of Christ. Peter also warned that false teachers would come who will “despise authority” and be self-willed and determined to do “their own thing” (2 Peter 2:1, 10). The Apostle Paul urged Christians to respect authority and be subject to government because God is the Author of structure and organization (Romans 13:1-2). Criticizing, disrespecting and ignoring authority only leads to confusion and chaos—yet, the Scriptures plainly state that God is not the author of confusion (1 Corinthians 14:33). We need to be aware of the fruits that flow from the age of skeptics!

Have a profitable Sabbath,

Douglas S. Winnail

News and Prophecy—August 25, 2011
Resurgent Germany: A Fourth Reich? In 2007, the cover article of Tomorrow’s World magazine asked the question Resurgent Germany: A Fourth Reich?(see September-October issue). Last week, London’s Daily Mail ran an article entitled, “Rise of the Fourth Reich, how Germany is using the financial crisis to conquer Europe.” With the recent announcement that French banks are in fiscal trouble, French President Sarkozy and Germany’s Angela Merkel are both pushing the merits of a European “fiscal union.” The Daily Mail warned, “Fo r be in no doubt what fiscal union means: it is one economic policy, one taxation system, one social security system, one debt, one economy, one finance minister. And all of the above would be German.” The article’s author concluded: “Where Hitler failed by military means to conquer Europe, modern Germans are succeeding through trade and financial discipline. Welcome to the Fourth Reich (Daily Mail, August 17, 2011). Based on Bible prophecies, this Work has been warning—since the final days of World War II—that Germany would rise again to lead Europe at the end of this age! Today, we see a disciplined German economic powerhouse that must lead Europe in order to keep itself afloat. Bible prophecies have long warned that the end of the age would be marked by a German-led European beast power composed of ten kingdoms (nations or groups) that will eventually surrender their power to a central authority (Revelation 17:4-13). Experts now say that for Europe to survive the current financial crisis, it must downsize from the current 16-nation eurozone. It will be interesting to see how this will occur. For more information on this topic, review our article Resurgent Germany: A Fourth Reich?
Excused Absences for Pagan Worship! Vanderbilt University in Tennessee has added Wiccan and pagan holidays to its annual academic calendar. The university calendar informs faculty and students what days qualify for excused absences. This calendar recognizes Christian holidays, Jewish holidays, Muslim holidays—and now Wiccan/pagan holidays. Wicca is an officially recognized “religion” in the United States and many other nations. So now, witches can request days off to observe the Feast of the Dead and worship the sacred marriage goddess (USA Today, August 17, 2011). Witchcraft has existed for thousands of years and is even mentioned in the Bible. Numerous scriptures in the Old Testament clearly condemn witchcraft, sorcery and all forms of pagan idolatrous pr actices (Exodus 20:1-8; Leviticus 19:31; 20:6, 27; Deuteronomy 18:10-12). This same condemnation is found in the New Testament. While Christians are not to practice violence against anyone, the Apostle Paul clearly states that “those who practice such things [sorcery, witchcraft, idolatry] will not inherit the kingdom of God” (Galatians 5:18-21). It is sobering today, to see the return of paganism—especially in “so-called” Christian nations like the U.S. and Britain. Long ago God prophesied about the Israelite-descended nations, “Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? No! They were not at all ashamed, nor did they know how to blush” and “They have gone after other gods to serve them” (Jeremiah 8:12; 11:10). With students and faculty allowed to miss class or reschedule exams for Wiccan holidays, what will be allowed next?
Archaeology Supports Bible History. Recent archaeological findings near the ancient Philistine city of Gath have unearthed evidence of fighting around this town known in the Bible as the home of Goliath. “Diggers at Gath have also uncovered traces of a destruction of the city in the 9th century B.C., including a ditch and embankment built around the city by a besieging army— still visible as a dark line running across the surrounding hills. The razing of Gath at that time appears to have been the work of the Aramean king Hazael in 830 B.C., an incident mentioned in the Book of Kings” (see 2 Kings 12:17). Additional evidence demonstrates that the Philistines ate both pig and dog, unlike their Israelite neighbors (www.foxnews.com, July 11, 2011). An earlier discovery of a potsherd with a name related to “Goliath” sheds additional light on the story of David and Goliath—which some scholars think is just a legend (see Biblical Archaeology Review, March/April 2006). Jesus Christ twice observed “For there is nothing covered that will not be revealed, and hidden that will not be known” (Matthew 10:26; Luke 12:2). It is exciting to see that scientific and archaeological evidence continues to support the Bible as a valid, historical document.—Adrian Käfer, Julius Hart, Sue Bennett, and Scott Winnail

COGwriter 2011

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