by Jon Pippy
Persevering To The End
given Wales UK 18 Oct 2014
|7 points to remember our faith and commitment to God (10.7 Mb)|
by Paula Henderson
Psalm 94: O Great God Eternal Let Your Vengance Fly
sung Wales UK 18 Oct 2014
"Seven days shalt thou keep a solemn feast unto the LORD thy God in the place which the LORD shall choose: because the LORD thy God shall bless thee in all thine increase, and in all the works of thine hands, therefore thou shalt surely rejoice." (Deuteronomy 16:15)
Note: This will be the last Pastor's Report before the Feast of Tabernacles this year. We currently plan to resume normal production the second weekend after the feast. May we wish you all an excellent Holy Day period.
At sunset on Wednesday October 8th is the beginning of the Feast of Tabernacles for 2014, picturing the glorious, peaceful rule of Jesus Christ during the Millennium. During this 8-day period, it's an opportunity for God's Church at this shattered time to physically meet each day for services — physically observing the Holy Convocations as commanded (Leviticus 23:35-36).
And as if the rare opportunity to fellowship together was not a sufficient incentive, having saved our second tithe — according to God's command — we have an abundance with which we can fulfil God's other command.... to rejoice!
In the world however things are very different. There are several places in scripture where the conditions at the end time are likened to birth contractions (Matthew 24:8; I Thessalonians 5:3). And the way we know that the birth of the child is coming nearer is that the contractions intensify in strength — and length, moving closer together. Eventually a period is reached where there seems to be just one continuous contraction, and either the baby will shortly be born or both mother and child would die. That time is known as the transition, and for this world, it corresponds to the time we know as the Great Tribulation.
Each year we enact the awesome Plan of Almighty God. Each year we look forward to its fulfilment. And each year looking at the world around us, we wonder, "is this the last Feast within this present age?" Yet as we celebrate this coming 1,000 years of overwhelming abundance — using the 2nd tithe God commands us to save in advance for the purpose — we do so in a world that largely runs on debt and credit. Isn't it interesting how often financial 'contractions' in particular seem to peak around the time of the Feast? So while we are celebrating the coming wonderful World Tomorrow, looking forward to stability and correct Government with a financial system based on the Laws of God — The Way of Give — the world around us, based on the exact opposite, seems to shudder.
Yet whatever the current economic climate may bring, whatever our current circumstances, we look forward to a time of utter abundance for the entire earth. To a world where the currency will remain stable for a thousand years, with absolutely no inflation! The greatest time of economic stability the world has ever seen! We therefore need to be sure that it is this future time that our minds should now be focusing on, for this world, and its economic woes, are almost ready to pass. But what we are going to be celebrating at the Feast is something that we can all really rejoice in — and hold fast to — for eternity.
And as that day approaches, we are commanded to draw progressively together, "not neglecting the assembling of ourselves together" (Hebrews 10:25). God gives us this command, knowing that in spite of our personal problems, financial turmoil, fuel shortages, escalating food-costs, disease scares, global terrorism etc...etc... it is absolutely essential for us to be bonded together as His people. It is becoming more and more a vital part of our lives. God knows that "because wickedness is multiplied, most men's love will grow cold" (Matthew 24:12 RSV) and therefore a balancing force is needed. And godly fellowship at the Feast can certainly be a major part of that.
In both Malachi 3:16 and also in Hebrews 10:25, we are forewarned of the vital necessity of close fellowship at the end of this age.. God wants us to be truly bound together and genuinely caring for one another within the Church. Being able to see each other face to face makes an incredible difference to the subsequent electronic contact and prayers. This is from personal experience of being able to visit with many of you around the world over the past few years. Let's be sure we all are praying for each other, as our travel plans fall into place and brethren start their journeys across the globe.
But we also realise that some of you, for various reasons just cannot get to a Feast site and will have to stay at home. Please be assured that you will be missed ... you are not forgotten, and as the apostle John makes very plain, our fellowship is primarily with God the Father and Jesus Christ, so you most certainly will not be alone. (I John 1:3)
With time flying by like "a weaver's shuttle", and the Feast almost upon us, what I thought would be most helpful this week would be to remind each of us of previous encouragement and instruction from Mr. Armstrong, given in his co-worker letters and also a Good News article, written prior to the Feast, because what he wrote all those years ago is even more valid for us today:
"... Yes, LET US BE GLAD AND REJOICE, and give honor to Him – for the marriage of the Lamb is soon COMING, and His Wife is again MAKING HERSELF READY!" (Co-Worker Letter – September 25, 1978)
For many years, since the apostasy shattered the Church and the Work, the affianced bride of Christ has been at worst in the doldrums and at best in confusion, but we have so little time left that it is imperative that we take our calling seriously, get back on track and continue what we started at baptism...to be ready for the Marriage Feast!
"Look forward to this FEAST OF TABERNACLES AS THE BEST, MOST SPIRIT-FILLED, AND JOYOUS EVER! " (Co-Worker Letter – September 25, 1978)
A joyous Feast doesn't just happen ... it takes work and it takes dedication to our calling. The admonition that it is more blessed to give than to receive, isn't only speaking of our finances, but an overall outgoing, unselfish way of thinking and acting. If our minds are centred on how to make this Feast more enjoyable for others as opposed to what we personally can get out of it, then we will have a joyous Feast — individually and collectively!
Although in general our Feast sites today are far smaller than the huge conference halls of yesteryear, the same principle applies of being a 'committee of one' to show to those we come into contact with a very different way of life, which is outgoing, serving and giving. These days the local town or city is not impacted in the same way as in the past, but the actual Feast sites themselves are expecting members of the Church of God to be arriving in a couple of weeks and each one of us needs to keep in mind just Who we represent.
"When we bring brethren into an area for eight whole days, the impact on the region is unprecedented! ....the whole city is geared to EXPECTANCY just prior to the Feast!
"What kind of people are these?" "What do they believe?" "What is the 'Feast of Tabernacles'?" "How will they treat my establishment?" "What about their children and their teenagers — will they be rowdy?" "Are they heavy drinkers?" These and dozens of other questions will be running through thousands of minds. YOU BRETHREN will be giving the answers, by your example, for a full eight days! Here, then, is an opportunity to really be a LIGHT to this world by LIVING the very picture of the Millennium, the KINGDOM OF GOD in action on this earth, as a witness to these people! You can, by your own personal example during the Feast, be used of God as a powerful witness that may help lead others into the very truth of God, and a way of ESCAPE from the terrible times ahead!
"THINK about that, as a very real responsibility! (Co-Worker Letter – June 1978)
Many long-time members of God's church are now in their 60's, 70's and upwards, and have been eagerly anticipating the return of Christ for decades! We have lived through and witnessed wars and rumours of wars, various famines in different places, outbreaks of diseases and most certainly the pollution and virtual destruction of the Truth, But because He has not yet returned, this in no way means He won't be coming at all; we are just that much closer than when we first believed. God has mercifully given us time to wake up to our calling and regain that first love, which was in danger of being quenched. Like the Church throughout the ages, we need to keep the focus and realise the deadly seriousness of the time we find ourselves in. For as it says in Hebrews "For yet a little while, and he that shall come will come, and will not tarry".(Hebrews 10:37)
"Let's not take everyday routine of events for granted. Let's awake to the REALITY of where we are in the panorama of world events. For we are in a very SERIOUS time!
As we approach perhaps the greatest Feast of Tabernacles in 1900 years, we need to be conscious that we are approaching CLOSER THAN WE THINK the very tremendous event this Festival pictures to us — the millennial world-reign of the KINGDOM OF GOD!...
...THIS WORLD is now very old, and nearing its END! We are in the LAST DAYS! I think it is important that you realize this fact — that the imminence of the END of this present evil world's life is much more real than many of us have realized.
As we approach this year's Feast of Tabernacles it is important that we REALIZE also that although Christ has moved swiftly this past year and more to set His Church back on God's track, we as a Church are NOT yet ready for either the protection promised us from the imminent GREAT TRIBULATION, or for the coming of Christ.
What we all need seriously now, is real FASTING, and fervent PRAYER, before the upcoming Feast of Tabernacles!
We must be vigilant in this, and put it first in our lives to avoid neglect — for the TIME IS NOW SHORTER THAN EVER!" (Co-Worker Letter – September 20, 1979)
"Dear Brethren of GOD’S Church:
Begin now to focus your mind on the most joyous eight days of this year .....
Stop and THINK of the real PURPOSE and MEANING of the Church in which you are a member! We live in a world of discontent, gloom, sorrow, frustration, despair. In boundless LOVE and mercy the Supreme GOD has chosen and called you and me and all our brethren in Christ OUT of this unhappy and futile world. WHY? Not only to give into our lives HIS happiness and joy and blessed hope, but to PREPARE us through HIS Spirit and HIS spiritual knowledge to rule over and TEACH all humanity during the coming thousand years and the following Great Judgment to have their lives transformed into vigorous happiness, joy and accomplishment with the GIFT of eternal life – when we ALL shall live happily, gloriously, vigorously, productively FOR EVER AND EVER!
We NOW look forward to the coming FEAST OF TABERNACLES. At the Feast we shall rejoice eight days looking forward to the time when we may be used in bringing other millions and billions of precious human lives into immortal glorious GOD-LIVES! Yes, then born into the GOD FAMILY – being VERY God ourselves!
All whose hearts and minds are right with God will be spiritually refreshed, uplifted, inspired, filled with joyous anticipation, enjoying a real FEAST on the SPIRITUAL WORD OF GOD!
Think how important this Festival is! After the return of King of kings Jesus Christ, “it shall come to pass, that every one…shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, and to keep the feast of tabernacles” (Zechariah 14:16).
And there shall be plagues and severe punishment on nations that neglect or refuse to attend! People will be compelled to be happy! Of course, that is speaking of mortal people then left alive – not of Christ’s saints who then will be immortal and in the very Family of God.
But you and I are, now, still mortal – and the above scripture shows us how very serious in God’s eyes it is that we attend this wonderful Feast this year. For we may be attending it as immortal-born children of God before this present decade is out! That certainly is a likely possibility.
We have undoubtedly entered the most explosive decade in the history of man. But it is possible that God will cut short the days of great tribulation ahead and bring us into the wonderful and glorious Kingdom of God before this decade is out. Again, remember, Jesus said no man will know the day or the hour. But He did say we may know by world events when it is near – even at the door!
...The Feast of Tabernacles pictures to us year after year the glorious thousand years just shortly ahead now of world peace, happiness and opportunity for eternal salvation for all not previously called! It will be a world without Satan! It will be a world with Jesus Christ ruling with love!
It is a time for us to get away from the dreary routine of daily life in Satan’s world and enjoy eight wonderful days with brethren in Christ and their families! It is the only time in the year that God provides a time when we may get away and rest from our daily regular duties – to be with brethren in Christ to worship Him and look forward to His utopia! (Co-Worker letter March 15, 1982)
During the Feast we plan to play a sermon from Mr. Armstrong on this very subject of qualifying for our future role. Most of our friends and neighbours will presume we are going away on a 'holiday', but we know that there is more to the Feast than just the location, the activities and the time spent in fellowship, as important as they may be. We need to keep at the forefront of our minds that we are students ... disciples ... of a new Way of Life and to milk out the most instruction we can from each message, and think deeply how this can help us individually to be ready for the job ahead, promised by Christ in John 14.
"...we are not yet spiritually without spot or blemish. But God's Word says the CHURCH will BE MADE READY. That does not mean every member in it will be ready. And those who are not ready are pictured in Matthew 25 in the parable of the 10 virgins. Those who will not be ready will find the door into God's Kingdom slammed shut in their faces! Each of us needs to examine himself (or herself) and ask, "Am I yet ready?"
Now the annual Feast of Tabernacles is approaching. It pictures to us the joyous time, now near, when Christ shall come. The Church shall have made herself ready and shall be changed from mortal human to immortal God — children of God in the God Family. We shall then reign with Christ a thousand years. Satan shall be removed. We shall not only be ruling in the new world government under Christ, but we shall also be priests (Rev. 5:10), reigning ON THE EARTH, when ALL ALIVE shall be called to salvation and eternal life through Christ! We're looking forward to a supremely happy, joyous time!...
...The world is fraught through now with trouble, violence, strife, suffering and death. But our God has something unspeakably better in store for us! Let us be READY! (Co-Worker Letter – September 2, 1981)
"In just a few weeks we shall attend the 1985 FEAST OF TABERNACLES, enjoying a foretaste of the glorious Millennium, with many hundreds of brethren of like faith and anticipation.
I believe this year’s Feast will be the most wonderful and enjoyable since God’s Church of our time began keeping this Festival at Belknap Springs, Ore. My wife and I had been keeping the seven annual Sabbath days for 14 years before that–the first seven years alone by ourselves, and the next seven with the parent church of the Church of God for our time and era.
We must remember, however, that just like when the servants of God came together to worship Him in the days of JOB, Satan came also among them. I have to WARN YOU–Satan also is looking forward to this year’s Feast, so he can come to different Feast sites and cause us any trouble he can, but if we PRAY with our whole hearts for Christ’s protection, He is more powerful than Satan and can restrain Satan from attacking us. So BE SURE YOU BEGIN PRAYING FOR THIS FESTIVAL RIGHT NOW–and keep it up until the Feast is over.
Begin now to pray for angels to accompany our thousands of members, most of whom will drive to the Feast site that they attend. Pray for GOD’S protection over all our brethren.
Many have been working long hours for a long time already to make this the most inspiring and joyous Festival so far.
Be sure to add your PRAYERS to their efforts–for God’s special protection and His blessing–and we shall all return home with our spiritual batteries recharged to the FULL. THERE WILL BE NO SHORTAGE OF GOD’S SPIRITUAL RECHARGING! (GN Sept 1985 - The Anticipation Cannot Equal The Realization)
In addition to the above material written by Mr Armstrong I would like to point you to two previous Reports written for this Holy Day season. If you have the time, may I strongly recommend that you re-read each article via the links provided:
If WE have been given a responsibility: then we have been given it for one reason only — to serve our brethren! We should never, ever lose sight of this. We must keep it in the front of our mind whenever we do our job, and then do it (in that serving Way) to the best of our ability. This is true whether we are the Festival Elder, or a visiting speaker, or we have been given the oversight to set-up the chairs, wash up or sweep floors......we are there to help, to serve, to give. We must never forget that!
If ANOTHER PERSON has a responsibility: then we have a duty to cooperate with them — being obedient to their requests, backing them up and assisting them in whatever way we can — so unity and joy can come from their actions. Again, this is true regardless of whether it is myself or the Festival Elder or the person setting up the chairs asking us to move. Back them up. Co-operate. That is God’s Way. And this is whether we agree with the decision or not. Provided what they ask is not sin, we should still support and assist fully so that the Feast runs smoothly. Unity is more important to God — as unity is for eternity!! (Psalm 133)
For us to implement this properly, there is one absolutely crucial thing we must do: we must go to God Himself — the source of all things (Acts 17:25) — and ask for His Mind and Spirit. Such prayer must be done in private, daily, through which He gladly gives us His Spirit, if we ask Him (Luke 11:13). Let us all be absolutely sure we remain 'plugged into the vine' throughout the Feast. Half an hour on our knees should certainly be regarded as a minimum amount of time to aim for each day. But, as Mr Armstrong pointed out when he was alive, we also need a continual walk with God so that we do indeed, "pray without ceasing" (I Thessalonians 5:17) — truly led by God's Spirit (Romans 8:14). This is the most important point of this article. (Pastors Report 24 Aug 2013)
God has given us 2nd tithe so we don't have the normal day to day worry about physical things... food, transport, accommodation etc. It is given to picture a time of abundance. But it is also given to remind us that such abundance — being physical — is transitory (as are we!). The festival is, after all, also called the Feast of booths — the Feast of TEMPORARY dwellings. By reminding us of this ephemeral basis of our physical, chemical existence 2nd tithe even points us towards what is truly lasting — the Spiritual messages heard at the feast and the friendships generated — and so reminds us that we must, "look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal." (II Corinthians 4:18)
So please do use your 2nd tithe wisely. Please do use it for temporary things — but remember to also use it in an outgoing, eternal manner. And please — all of you; together with stranger, fatherless, and widow — do rejoice! (Pastors Report 7 Sept 2013)
Have an excellent Sabbath, and a most enjoyable and profitable Feast of Tabernacles.
Scotland votes NO to independence: Are all the problems solved… Or are they just beginning?
The United Kingdom… or the
When the result of the Scottish referendum was announced, a collective sigh of relief was felt, not only in the UK, but around the world. The United Kingdom was still ‘united’ – at least for the time being! The euphoria was, however, short lived.
Rather than solve problems, this referendum has opened a political ‘can of worms’. While a ‘Yes’ vote, according to many, would have been a huge disaster, for both for the United Kingdom and Scotland, the ‘No’ vote has also created serious problems, which may yet tear the Union apart.
One of the problems is the amount of money allocated to Scotland by the UK government. This was decided in 1978, in haste, and the author of the formula has now admitted that it is ‘shamefully unfair, and should be scrapped’! The following interview with Lord Barnett, the architect of the hated subsidy to Scotland, reveals much!
“Little did I think when I made a back of the envelope calculation about funding for Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland more than 35 years ago that the so-called ‘Barnett Formula’ would take on a life of its own and go on to become the unwritten – and unjust – convention by which Government spending would be allocated for decades ahead.Then, as now, the economic climate was tough and I found myself spending most of my time fending off Cabinet Ministers who all wanted the same thing: more money for their departments from an ever-shrinking public purse. Faced with an almost impossible job, I made what I thought was a politically expedient decision to keep at least some of the wolves from my door.
Nevertheless, the spending grants continue the iniquity of the previous system. Last year under the formula, Scotland got £10,152 per head, Wales, despite being poorer, got £9,709, and England £8,529.My idea was to have the settlement ratified by the Cabinet, which it duly was. Then, I knew, the Scottish, Welsh and Northern Ireland Offices would have to take any claims for more money to Cabinet, rather than try to petition me.
I never thought the arrangement – there was and is no proper ‘formula’ that works out how much money is needed and where it should be spent – would last any longer than a year or two, certainly not after the next General Election. It has no legal or democratic basis and I never dreamed the Thatcher and Major governments would adopt my calculation as a convenient political measure, or that it would outlast Tony Blair and Gordon Brown to dominate the current cross-party Westminster’s response to the Scottish independence issue.
I have become more troubled by the so-called ‘Barnett Formula’ with every passing year. It is clear that what was then a short-term political fix has no place in deciding long-term government spending. It is grossly unfair that Scotland should receive more money than the regions of England or Wales when that decision is not based on actual need.
At the moment, Scotland is given around £1,600 a head in annual central government grants more than England. That is manifestly unjust and allows the Scottish parliament to provide all sorts of things, such as free prescription charges and university education, that the English can only dream of.
In Scotland, students leave University with a degree…
“In England… The true cost of a university degree will rocket to up to £100,000 for today’s students, The Independent on Sunday can reveal. Thousands of people currently studying at university will end up paying that amount over their career because of interest charges and other fees – several times the £27,000 or £36,000 in fees that most three and four-year courses charge.” (independent.co.uk)
I deeply resent the fact that the leaders of the three main political parties are blithely agreeing to continue to use the formula after the ‘No’ vote. They have no business making such a pledge. Government spending should be debated by and decided democratically by Parliament. That’s why I have tabled a question in the House of Lords calling for a full debate on the issue next month. If Parliament then decides Scotland should have more money, let it be so. Such decisions should be made by the will of Parliament, rather than dishonestly justified by a short-term decision I made in 1978.” (dailymail.co.uk)
The so-called ‘Barnett Formula’ is just the tip of the iceberg, condemned by its author! Lord Barnett resents the fact that the leaders of the three main political parties are blithely agreeing to continue to use the formula after the ‘No’ vote. He claims that they have no business making such a pledge. This should be decided by Parliament!
But solving this issue seems near impossible. To cut the unfair subsidy to Scotland would cause yet more division – while if this issue is not solved, then the English will not be happy. And this is just one of many major issues.
“Former Labour minister Frank Field called for ‘home rule’ in England and said his party also had to ditch the controversial Barnett formula – which means public spending is £1,623 per head higher in Scotland than in England. He said: ‘The promises to Scotland ensure that the English Question will dominate May’s general election.
‘Voters will demand from all English candidates whether they support English home rule and if they support giving an additional £1,600 a year, for ever, for every person living in Scotland, over and above what they will vote for their own constituents.‘ Voters will demand ‘yes’ to the first question, and ‘no’ to the second. These are the answers I shall willingly give.’
Former Labour MP Andrew Mackinlay said: ‘The case for an English Parliament is compelling if not overwhelming. Just tinkering around with a few extra powers, for so-called regional authorities and cities, will simply not do.” (dailymail.co.uk)
The Labour Party, which has 40 Scottish Members of Parliament in Westminster, who at present can vote on English issues, while English M.P.’s cannot vote on Scottish issues. English votes for English laws would threaten the Labour Party’s ability ever to hold a majority in England, as the following article points out:
“How can Labour justify Scottish MPs having a vote on English issues over which they have no control in their native land? Mr Miliband has no answer to this question. He knows, however, that English votes for English laws threatens the Labour Party’s ability ever to hold a majority in England.
Labour is now in mortal crisis, while Mr Cameron’s unscrupulous virtuosity is starting to make him look like the heir to Benjamin Disraeli. So the Prime Minister has saved his skin. But he has only done so by ripping up the British Constitution, which is a very un-conservative thing to do.
Yesterday’s announcement raises some massive questions.
Mr Cameron’s reforms amount to the most profound change to the British Constitution since the Glorious Revolution of 1688.” (telegraph.co.uk)
“The First Minister goes back on his promise to accept the referendum result and raises the prospect of Scotland unilaterally declaring independence. Alex Salmond has raised the prospect of Scotland unilaterally declaring independence without another referendum as he abandoned his promise to accept the result and claimed that No voters were ‘tricked’.
The First Minister appeared to blame elderly Scots, who were most hostile to leaving the UK, for holding back younger generations and argued that independence is inevitable after they die off. In a startling intervention, he also claimed that another referendum may not be required to break up Britain as the Scottish Parliament could unilaterally declare independence after gaining increasing numbers of powers.” (telegraph.co.uk)
Mr Cameron added: “Just as the people of Scotland will have more power over their affairs, so it follows that the people of England, Wales and Northern Ireland must have a bigger say over theirs. It is absolutely right that a new and fair settlement for Scotland should be accompanied by a new and fair settlement to all parts of our United Kingdom.”
In Scotland the result will have left divisions that will not be easy to heal. More than 1.6 million Scots must now live in a political union they voted to leave. And what of the 41.4 million in the rest of Britain – 91 per cent of the population – who, denied a vote, could only look on as Scotland deliberated on the break-up of the United Kingdom. Many have found themselves hurt and bemused by the stridency of the Yes campaign, the atavistic tribalism, and in some cases, naked hatred directed towards the English.
Britain has been spared the anguish of pain and separation, the tortuous unravelling of all the threads that unite us – administrative, military, cultural, commercial, charitable – woven together so painstakingly over 307 years. The Kingdom remains united. But uneasily so.” (telegraph.co.uk)
One of the major concerns before the referendum was that a Yes vote could trigger a financial collapse. In response to the No vote, the FTSE hit a 14-year high and sterling soared as confidence flowed back into the City after the rejection of Yes. The big question is, will this trend continue – or will increased political infighting and uncertainty be every bit as damaging as the fallout from a Yes vote?
With only 8 months to go before the UK general election on May 7th next year, the issues that have arisen from the result of the Scottish referendum will almost certainly take centre stage.
While nations are relatively prosperous, independence minded groups will also prosper. But when times get tough, things can change – rapidly!
We are watching for a dictator to arise in Europe and unite 10 nations which will fulfil Bible prophecy. A dictator can only seize power when the people realise that governments have failed – and the nations are in crisis, especially if the financial system breaks down. This type scenario allowed Adolf Hitler to come to power in Germany. He did not seize power – he was elected by the people – seen as a man to solve the problems.
“So long as present German prosperity continues - the Nazi takeover will not be possible! But—should any severe threat to that hard-won prosperity come—the picture will change - VIOLENTLY in Germany.
REMEMBER! It was the aftermath of the disastrous stock market crashes of 1924 and 1929 that fanned the flames of violence in Germany to pave the way for Hitler! HISTORY REPEATS ITSELF, they say. And your Bible predicts a great TRADE WAR between the economic power in Europe and the United States. It predicts terrible financial collapse of this country”. (USA)
“Make no mistake! Germany and all Europe would not escape unscathed in a hot trade war between the Common Market and the United States.Terrible economic disasters would result. And the result from such disasters? A new Nazi Germany!” (The Plain Truth, December 1963)
The US stock market crashes started in 1924, and went on for several years. Today, the stock market can crash in just minutes! The world’s financial system is, according to many analysts, very close to collapse. When this crash comes – it will be sudden – and totally devastating – it has to be – to create the situation for a Dictator to take control in Europe.
This dictator, the Beast, controlled by the ‘miracle working’ leader of the Roman Catholic Church – will appear ethical – he will look to be doing the ‘right thing’ – and any who refuses to obey its new laws will be seen as enemies of the State – and dealt with accordingly!
We get a clear indication of end time events only in the Bible. In Matthew chapter 24:3 the disciples asked Christ this very question. In verse 14 Christ tells us: “…and this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.”
Writing in Mystery of the Ages. Mr Armstrong confirms:
“…a door was to be opened for this leader and/or the Philadelphia era of the Church to fulfill Matthew 24:14: “And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.”
It was to be at a time when, for the first time in the history of mankind, the weapons of mass destruction were produced that could erase all humanity from the earth (Matthew. 24:21-22). This also was to occur just before the Second Coming of Christ (verses 29-30).
These prophecies have now definitely been fulfilled. The true gospel has been restored and has now gone in power into every nation on the face of the earth.” (Mystery of the Ages - Chapter 6)
The Apostle Paul warns of the next event:
“Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first…” (Thessalonians 2:3)
A falling away from what? They were to ‘fall away’ from the “…faith, which was once for all delivered to the saints”! (Jude 1:1)
In Daniel chapter 12, verse 7, we read that the power of the Holy people would be scattered.
Is that not the condition of God’s Church today – with many hundreds of groups each with different teachings?
“Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When her branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is near:
So ye in like manner, when ye shall see THESE THINGS come to pass, know that it is nigh, even at the doors.
Verily I say unto you, that this generation shall not pass, till all these things be done.
Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away.” (Mark 13:28-31)