Meaning of the Day--FOT

an article based on a sermon

by Ian Henderson

given FOT first day, 7 Oct 2006

Oftentimes the sermons at the Feast of Tabernacles reference the same scriptures. We need to make note of those verses that are read again and again at God's Feast, because that is what God wants us to focus on and understand. He is teaching us, and He inspires the speaking through His Holy Spirit. Repetition is a powerful tool in education, and we are being educated at the Feast.

Why are we here?

Why do we attend the Feast of Tabernacles? Leviticus 23:1-2 And the Eternal 1 spake unto Moses, saying, (2) Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, Concerning the feasts of the Eternal, which ye shall proclaim to be holy convocations, even these are my feasts.

The Eternal (the One who became Christ) is talking to all of Ancient Israel, the ones He took out of Egypt, not just the Jews, as Judah is just one of the twelve tribes of Israel. The Eternal said, "These are the feasts of the Eternal," and then He repeated it: "These are My feasts." The feast days are not the feasts of the Jews. They are the Eternal's feasts.

Leviticus 23:34-35 Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, The fifteenth day of this seventh month shall be the feast of tabernacles for seven days unto the Eternal.(35) On the first day shall be an holy convocation: ye shall do no servile work therein.

Why do we attend the Feast of Tabernacles? We attend because God commands it, plain and simple.

Leviticus 23:41 And ye shall keep it a feast unto the Eternal seven days in the year. It shall be a statute for ever in your generations: ye shall celebrate it in the seventh month.

How long is "for ever"?

Zechariah 14:16 And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the Eternal of hosts, and to keep the feast of tabernacles.

"Forever" means at least as long as there are people breathing and walking around on earth. The Feast of Tabernacles will be kept throughout the Millennium and through the White Throne Judgment period. It is the same with the weekly Sabbath. God made everything, and the seventh day He rested. He created a special day and sanctified it, made it holy. It is His day created for man. It was created some 2,000 years before the Jews were around. The Sabbath is God's day.

Part of the reason we are here today, why we attend the Feast of Tabernacles, is Acts 3:19: Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord; (20) And he shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you: (21) Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution [restoration] of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began.

What does "restitution" or "restoration" mean? If you get a beat-up, old car and rebuild it -- repaint it and make it like new -- you have restored it to its original, showroom condition. That is what is going to happen to this earth, what the Feast of Tabernacles is pointing us to. That is what we are going to be responsible for in the Millennium, the restoration of the earth back to the Garden of Eden. It will not be a case of the garden "in" Eden. The Garden of Eden will cover the whole earth. That is why it will take 1,000 years. There is a lot of earth out there to be restored.

Another reason we attend the Feast of Tabernacles is because of the loyalty and the obedience of one man, Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong. Malachi 4:5 Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Eternal:

The "day of the Eternal" probably refers to a year's period of time -- the last year of the 3 1/2 years of the Great Tribulation when God's wrath is executed on this earth, when this earth is being prepared for the Millennium.

Who is the Elijah in Malachi 4:5? What did the original Elijah do? He re-established God's way among God's people Israel. What did Mr. Herbert Armstrong do? He came in the power and spirit of Elijah. God used him to raise up the end-time people of God -- Spiritual Israel -- God's Church, to restore His holy Sabbath Day and His holy days, to restore His law, His way of living, within the Church. God revealed to Mr. Armstrong His plan of salvation for mankind. Mr. Armstrong preached the gospel of the Kingdom of God throughout the world, and God's message went to many of the rulers of this age at the time Mr. Armstrong was preaching.

Mr. Armstrong wrote in his book, The Wonderful World Tomorrow - What It Will Be Like:

"This Feast of Tabernacles is one of the seven annual Festivals God commanded His people to observe. But ancient Israel rebelled. They rejected God's Festivals, and turned to pagan festivals. The Jewish people, after Ezra and Nehemiah, observed them."
When the Book of the Law was read to the people, they wept (Nehemiah 8:9). They were ashamed. God opened their minds to realize what they should be doing.
"But false 'Christian' ministers taught [teach today] that God's Festivals were 'part of the old Mosaic system -- not for us today.'"
In other words, they teach that God's Festivals are not required for salvation.
"The clergy deceived and prejudiced the people The people were deceived into believing that Christmas, New Year's, Easter, etc., were days Christ ordained."
We know who the Great Deceiver is, the one who deceives the people. If you ever are in Israel at Christmastime, go out into the fields and see if you can find any shepherds "keeping watch over their flocks by night." You will not because it is too cold at that time of year.

In the newspaper recently, it was reported that the Church of England has decreed that it will not allow the referring to God as "Our Father" anymore, because that establishes God as an all-powerful, all-conquering male; and that might encourage some men to beat up their wives. What did Christ say? "After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven..." (Matthew 6:9).2

The Importance God Puts on His Feast Days

Ezekiel 20:10-11 Wherefore I caused them to go forth out of the land of Egypt, and brought them into the wilderness. (11) And I gave them my statutes, and showed them my judgments, which if a man do, he shall even live in them.

In other words, God gave them the way that they should live -- His way -- because they had been living Satan's way.

Ezekiel 20:12 Moreover also I gave them my sabbaths, to be a sign between me and them [a sign linking us with the Great God], that they might know that I am the Eternal that sanctify them [that separates them from this world].

There is not a single person on the earth today who is keeping God's holy days with understanding who did not get that knowledge directly or indirectly from Herbert W. Armstrong, God's end-time apostle. God revealed His plan for mankind to Mr. Armstrong. In a Worldwide News article, Mr. Armstrong wrote:

"I tell you that there is only one church on Earth today that understands God's master plan. His master plan is unfolded and given to us through these seven annual Holy Days and the seven annual festivals. And this is the only church on Earth that observes them. God revealed that to me fifty-two and a half years ago, (1927 ) and at that time, my wife and I began observing these annual Holy Days. We didn't yet understand all of the festivals. We didn't understand "why." We just knew God said to do it; and we found it was binding forever, and that it was also observed by Christ and by the church in the beginning, the New Testament church"
Remember Abraham's example? Abraham was very wealthy. God told him to pack up everything and go. Abraham did not quibble. The Bible simply says: "Abraham departed" (Genesis 12:4). Abraham obeyed God. Mr. Armstrong read in the Bible that these were God's holy days, so he kept them; but he did not have a clue why for seven whole years. Then he made a "mistake":
"Now I preached it to others that were supposed to be even the Church of God [Sardis era]. They laughed me to scorn. They would not accept it. For seven years, my wife and I had to keep these Holy Days alone by ourselves. Then the beginning of this church was raised up in autumn 1933. They were my own converts. I taught them these annual Holy Days, and they began to keep them, starting with 19 members. And that is the way this church, now scattered all over the world, and that is when we started."
This is referring to the Philadelphia era of God's Church. It started with just 19 members
"Now for seven years, we kept these annual Holy Days, or Sabbath Days; and we didn't really understand why we were doing it. But all the brethren and the church started to grow, and the radio broadcast was going, the Plain Truth was being published, starting very small. Just growing gradually, little by little, and yet it was growing thirty per cent a year on the average. Then after seven years of that, now fourteen years from the time that we had begun, God revealed to me WHY we are to observe these days and festivals; and that they pictured God's great master plan for the redemption of human kind."
Every person who has ever lived is included in God's plan. Concerning this plan, Mr. Armstrong wrote in his book, Mystery of the Ages:
"Passover pictures the death of Christ in payment for the penalty of human sin repented of."
Passover is not a "holy day." It is far more. It is the foundation on which the whole plan of God sits.
"The seven days of the Festival of Unleavened Bread picture the Church coming out of sin, even as Israel came out of Egypt."
This feast, the Days of Unleavened Bread, also pictures keeping God's commandments, which is another way of saying, "putting away sin."
"The Day of Pentecost, originally called Feast of Firstfruits, pictures the Church as the first to be begotten and born as children of God during the Church age."
This Day of Pentecost involves us, God's church. We are those firstfruits.
"The Feast of Trumpets pictures the Second Coming of Christ to take over earth's throne and to rule all nations. The Day of Atonement pictures the putting away of Satan."
With just the putting away of Satan, the world will become a different place.
"The Feast of Tabernacles pictures the thousand-year reign under the rule of Christ and the born children of God. The Final Great Day pictured the final judgment..."
Mr. Armstrong made this comment in the booklet, Pagan Holidays - or God's Holy Days - Which?:
"Can we qualify as a Son of God -- a king and priest -- ruling with Christ on His throne, assisting Christ at that time, if we now refuse to keep these festivals?"
We cannot qualify as a Son of God if we refuse to keep God's festivals, because we are going to be teaching them in the Millennium. If we do not understand the festivals of God, if we do not keep them, we cannot understand the plan of God.

Kings and Priests, Rulers and Teachers

Revelation 5:10 And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.

We in God's Church are to be kings and priests who will reign on the earth under Christ. We are not "going to heaven and playing on harps." All people who have ever lived and died are still in their grave, in the ground, waiting to be resurrected in their time. God's chosen people will be resurrected when Christ returns, but the majority of the dead will be resurrected in the Great White Throne Judgment period.

When the Great White Throne Judgment period comes, then every person who has ever lived will be resurrected (except those "who are Christ's" who were resurrected at His return), there will be a witness from Adam all the way through the ages. If someone from one of those ages says, "If we had only done this..." there will be a witness to say, "That was tried in such in such a place, and it did not work."

The children and young people in God's Church today who live into the Millennium have a unique position. They are the link between this society and the next society in the world tomorrow. They will have been brought up in this world, will go on to live in the next, and will see the difference. They will have seen the mess the world is in today and will see the start of a utopia. That utopia does not immediately happen at the beginning of the Millennium. The Millennium lasts 1,000 years for a reason. That is how long it will take to finish the job of restoring the earth. The job of the people in the Millennium is to prepare this earth to receive the billions that will be resurrected at the Last Great Day.

What will the Millennium be like?

In the Millennium everything will be completely changed. The whole earth will be reshaped, reformed. Part of the tongue of the Egyptian Sea will dry up, and the islands will be removed. There may even be one land mass again, as there might have been at the beginning. Mountain ranges are going to disappear; the whole climate will change. There will be a totally, completely different world in the Millennium.

The very nature of animals will change!

Isaiah 11:6 The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them.

Lions are terrifying animals now; but in the Millennium, children will be able play with them. Just think of it: The wolf will lie down with the lamb. (They will lie down with them today when they want some lunch.) The leopard will lie down with the kid! Leopards today are totally untrainable.

Isaiah 11:9 They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain...

People have done a great job of killing off wildlife in Africa. Look at the American bison. In America, bison were found across the plains in great numbers; and the early settlers just shot them for fun and left them where they fell. What have we done to the heritage that God gave us?

Isaiah 11:7 And the cow and the bear shall feed; their young ones shall lie down together: and the lion shall eat straw like the ox.

Carnivorous animals will have their whole digestive tracts changed.

Isaiah 65:25 The wolf and the lamb shall feed together, and the lion shall eat straw like the bullock: and dust shall be the serpent's meat. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain, saith the Eternal.

It will be a world with one language.

Zephaniah 3:9 For then will I turn to the people a pure language, that they may all call upon the name of the Eternal, to serve him with one consent.

This does not mean the whole world will speak English! English is not a pure language. God will give the world a new and perfect language with which to understand His truth.

No illiteracy, poverty, famine, starvation and crime.

Quoting again from Mr. Armstrong's booklet, The Wonderful World Tomorrow - What It Will Be Like:

"See, now, a glimpse into a world of no illiteracy..."
What is the literacy level in the U. K.? We have children leaving high school who cannot read or write or do basic arithmetic.
" poverty..."
In the U. K., a nation that people from other nations want to immigrate to, there are people who sleep on the streets with a cardboard box for cover. That simply will not happen in the world tomorrow.
" famine and starvation..."
Famine and starvation are not only found in Africa, India, and Asia. There are people who go hungry in parts of America and Europe as well. North Koreans are spending every penny they can to try to make nuclear weapons to "protect" themselves, and their people are starving. Why? There is a lack of the right kind of education, of God's way.
"..into a world where crime decreases rapidly..."
Again, utopia will not happen at once. People will have to be taught the ways of God. When people travel to the Feast of Tabernacles in the Millennium, they will just shut their doors and go. They will not have to lock the door, because no one will break in and steal anything. Crime will not be "a way of life." God will be in control. It will be a vastly different world.
"..people learn honesty, chastity, human kindness, and happiness -- a world of peace, prosperity, abundant well-being."
People will live in peace in unwalled villages.

Ezekiel 38:11 And thou shalt say, I will go up to the land of unwalled villages; I will go to them that are at rest, that dwell safely, all of them dwelling without walls, and having neither bars nor gates,

This is what it is going to be like. Just think of it: no army, no navy, no air force, no police force, no companies producing locks.

The desserts shall blossom; the world climate will change.

Isaiah 35:1 The wilderness and the solitary place shall be glad for them; and the desert shall rejoice, and blossom as the rose.

Every few years in the Namaqualand Desert in South Africa, rains come; and the land erupts. Within a week to ten days, the Namaqualand daisies are eighteen inches high. They are basically a mixture of white, pink, and, occasionally, deep burgundy flowers. They grow to about two-feet high, growing in nothing but sand; and they cover the desert in one swaying mass, as far as the eye can see. It is incredibly beautiful. They soon shrivel up and drop their seeds, and a month later are gone, because there is no water. Water is pictured as a type of God's Holy Spirit. Suddenly there is water, and suddenly there is life.

When Christ was hanging on the stake with the two thieves on either side of Him, one of them said, "We're guilty and deserve to die; but this Man has done nothing." What did Christ say? Luke 23:43 And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise.

The Bible translators put the comma in the wrong place. It should be "Verily I say unto thee today, [comma should be here] shalt thou be with me [in 3,000 years' time, from the time of this event, they would be with Christ in the White Throne Judgment period] in paradise." This thief will be resurrected into a world like the Garden of Eden that will have been created by the people who have lived during the Millennium

Sickness and disease will be conquered.

How? Quoting again from Mr. Armstrong's booklet, The Wonderful World Tomorrow - What It Will Be Like:

"First, by right education. Cause people to know that God did not design the human physical body so that it must be getting sick all the time, catching continual diseases. Sickness and disease occur only when nature's laws are broken. It is not natural to be diseased -- it is unnatural. Educate people in the laws of good health. In proper diet"
There have been accounts that a number of babies have died recently from parents taking fast food, grinding it up, and feeding it to their babies. Re-educating people in proper diet is vital.
"God designed certain foods for good health. Some things that grow are not designed for food. Some are poison. Educate people in sanitation, hygiene, required amounts of sleep, pure water..."
Scientists have found that the top layers of ice in Antarctica are polluted with various poisonous substances, and that even the penguins' bodies contain measurable amounts of DDT. We have not used DDT in the western world for some thirty years Once it gets into the food chain, it stays in the food chain.
"fresh air..."
In southern England we have days where there is an inversion layer. We look across to France, and all we see is a gray pall along the horizon. It is pollution from France, and you can smell it. We build power stations in England with smoke stacks hundreds of feet high, and all the muck gets blown to Sweden. It comes down in Sweden as acid rain and is wiping out their rain forests. This is how our world operates. In China there are several coal seams that have been on fire for years. These combined fires alone emit more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere than all the motor vehicles in the USA put together.

The sower will overtake the reaper.

Amos 9:13-14 Behold, the days come, saith the Eternal, that the plowman shall overtake the reaper, and the treader of grapes him that soweth seed; and the mountains shall drop sweet wine, and all the hills shall melt. (14) And I will bring again the captivity of my people of Israel, and they shall build the waste cities, and inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, and drink the wine thereof; they shall also make gardens, and eat the fruit of them.

People will be guided by the ways of God.

Isaiah 30:20 And though the Lord give you the bread of adversity, and the water of affliction, yet shall not thy teachers be removed into a corner any more, but thine eyes shall see thy teachers:

"Thine eyes shall see thy teachers" means that we, as king/priests, will be able to manifest ourselves as Christ did when He appeared in the room after Thomas had earlier expressed his disbelief. Christ said to him, "Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing" (John 20:27). Christ appeared in physical form, and everyone there saw Him. We will have bodies "made like unto his glorious body" (Phil 3:21) -- with this same ability to manifest ourselves in physical form as Christ did.

Isaiah 30:21 And thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This is the way, walk ye in it, when ye turn to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left.

We will be able to appear next to somebody whose thoughts are leading down a potentially sinful path and say, "You do not want to think this way, because this is the end it will lead to." Satan will not be there to broadcast his lies of, "Don't believe what you are hearing. Take control. Do your own thing."

All will know God.

Jeremiah 31:33-34 But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the Eternal, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people. (34) And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Eternal: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the Eternal: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.

What is going to be so different in the Millennium for people than for the Ancient Israelites whom God rescued out of Egypt? What did the Israelites do shortly afterwards? They moaned, "We do not have any water!" Why didn't they say, "God, we know what You have just done. We need some water." What will be different with the people in the Millennium? Joel 2:28 And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions:

There is the difference. Satan has been removed. God's Holy Spirit is working with everybody. When we appear beside someone and say, "Wait a minute, don't go down that road, let me explain, this is the way," you are not going to have a response of, "Hold on a minute. Who are you? I don't want to do it that way!" We will be dealing with people with teachable minds who will say, "Oops What is the problem?" When we point out the problem, they will understand, and in this way it will be so much easier to direct them away from the path that is going to hurt.

When Christ returns, He will resurrect His people who are dead and will change those who are still alive to spirit beings. What kind of power are we going to have? We will be there to recreate an entire world. So many individual things are going to need to be restored. All the fish in the sea are dead (Revelation 16:3), but we know that there will be fish in the Dead Sea.

Ezekiel 47:10 And it shall come to pass, that the fishers shall stand upon it from Engedi even unto Eneglaim; they shall be a place to spread forth nets; their fish shall be according to their kinds, as the fish of the great sea, exceeding many.

Engedi is on the Dead Sea. The Dead Sea will not be "dead" anymore. It will be a fabulously beautiful area, except around the edges. Part of the salt marsh will remain as a reminder that that is what it was like.

Finally, after 6,000 years there will be peace.

The Day of Trumpets is about war, but the Millennium will be a time of peace. Isaiah 9:6-7 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. (7) Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the Eternal of hosts will perform this.

"Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end." Why? Because the government of God brings peace.

Christ said, "Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God" (Matthew 5:9). The firstfruits, God's chosen people, are the children of God. Our job will be as peacemakers. We will be teaching the way of peace. What is the way of peace? It is living according to God's way and not Satan's way.

Mr. Armstrong was referred to by several people outside God's Church as "Ambassador for World Peace." Over the years, starting around 1970, he met with such leaders as India's Indira Ghandi; Israel's Golda Meir; the President of Indonesia; the President of the Philippines; Prince Mikasa of Japan; Egypt's Anwar Sadat; England's Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher; Prince Charles, heir to the throne of England; the King of Thailand; Otto von Habsburg, a member of the European Parliament; the leader of China, Deng Xiaoping; Romanian President Nicolae Ceausescu; Ethiopian Emperor Haile Selassie; the President of South Vietnam; King Hussein of Jordan; U. S. President Ronald Reagan; and a great many others -- over one third of the world's heads of state.

A key fact that we did not fully understand at the time is that Mr. Armstrong sought none of these meetings, yet the invitations came. These leaders requested to see him. In those meetings Mr. Armstrong did not try to convert. He would tell them that there are only two ways of life -- the way of get and the way of give, and would announce the coming Kingdom of God and that this world-ruling Kingdom will bring peace.

These leaders all saw the sense in what he was saying, and they all wanted that result. The crux of the problem is Romans 3:17: And the way of peace have they not known: [Why?] (18) There is no fear of God before their eyes.

There is only one way of peace, and that is by living the way God says to live. This world is a mess, the result of 6,000 years of Satan's rule. Satan has brought this world to the point where he can literally have it destroyed. Matthew 24:22: "And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved [alive].." Satan would prevail. The whole of mankind would be snuffed out, and the plan of God would be null and void. But Satan cannot prevail. It will not end like that. Christ will intervene and stop it, but it is going right down to the wire.

Isaiah 59:7-8 Their feet run to evil, and they make haste to shed innocent blood: their thoughts are thoughts of iniquity [lawlessness]; wasting and destruction are in their paths. (8) The way of peace they know not; and there is no judgment in their goings: they have made them crooked paths: whosoever goeth therein shall not know peace.

There are only two ways of life. One leads to the present mess this world is in, and the other leads to peace and prosperity. The chosen people of God are in training now to work with Christ as a team that will bring peace and prosperity to the world. There is much written about peace in the Bible.

Isaiah 9:6-7 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. (7) Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the Eternal of hosts will perform this.

John 14:27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

The peace that Christ it talking about is not just the absence of war. It is the result of a way of life that the world needs to be educated into.

John 16:33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.

As I said, true peace is not just the absence of war. What will we be teaching in the Millennium? Remember we will be working with people who have the Spirit of God, and Satan will not be present. What will we be teaching? How to develop the fruit of God's Holy Spirit.

Galatians 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, (23) Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

We are commanded to rejoice at the Feast of Tabernacles because it pictures the Millennium. Rejoicing is not a suggestion. We gather together for one week of learning and fellowship. It is great to be together where we can have fellowship, where we can sit down with a plate of food together.

The fruit of God's spirit, "against such there is no law." Why? Because that is the way God is. That is how He thinks. There is no law against love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and temperance.

Miracles to get the work done

There were many miracles that took place so that Mr. Armstrong could do the job of preaching the gospel to the world as a witness. A number of people were unaware of these miracles, and never appreciated them at the time he was taking the gospel to the world. Mr. Armstrong's May 1971 co-worker letter expresses how he saw these events develop.

"I am able, now, to disclose to you privately and confidentially the almost unbelievable manner in which giant doors have been opening before me. As you know, one after another, the doors have opened for personal meetings with presidents, kings, prime ministers--and many other high government officials, in many countries around the world."
The first "miracle" occurred in 1968. Mr. Armstrong wrote:
"The wife of our office manager at Bonn, West Germany, happened to show a copy of the 1966 Ambassador College year book "The Envoy" to an industrialist friend in Brussels. He was much impressed by the book, and the high character of Ambassador students, reflected in their photographs and action shots. This industrialist happened to be a personal friend of King Leopold of Belgium. He asked if he might show The Envoy to the King. The King was quite impressed, and said he would like to meet the founder and Chancellor of this unique high-character educational institution."
Mr. Armstrong did eventually meet with the king and a friendship was born. The second "miracle" took place shortly thereafter. Continuing, Mr. Armstrong writes:
"In September, 1968, our Dean of Faculties wanted Ambassador College to conduct an archaeological project at a location in Israel. I was personally not interested in such a project. But I consented to visiting Jerusalem to see whether permission could be granted from the government authorities.

"He found Dr. Mazar at the time in charge of the most important "dig" so far undertaken, starting from the south wall of the Temple Mount. Three major United States universities had sought participation in this outstanding project. All had been rejected. But Professor Mazar offered a fifty-fifty joint participation to Ambassador College! ... About mid-October (1968) I did fly to Jerusalem to look over this project. The "dig" had been begun a few months before. I met Professor Mazar and inspected the project.

"It was much more impressive than I had expected. I began to realize the scientific and educational value to Ambassador College. A luncheon was held in a private dining room in the Knesset--the government's capitol building. Present at the luncheon were five high-ranking officials of both the university and the government. It was a most memorable luncheon. The favour we were given in their eyes--the warmth of their attitude toward us--was inspiring, astonishing, and most unusual...

"So that is the manner in which this vitally important leap forward in the Work was started. We have been given very great favour in the eyes of both government and university chiefs in Jerusalem!"

God wanted this project. Why? Because that gave the work of God, and Mr. Armstrong in particular, a certain prestige. People knew about it. Not just anybody could be involved there. It was the biggest archaeological dig of its kind at the time.

The third "miracle" happened in late 1968. Mr. Armstrong wrote:

"After our mid-October meeting in Jerusalem in 1968?I caught a Pan Am round-the-world plane for Hong Kong and Tokyo, for conferences with advertising officials of Reader's Digest. We had begun purchasing double-page advertising space in many editions of their magazine around the world. Arriving [at the] Tokyo airport, we were met by our...Chairman of the Department of Asian studies at Ambassador...He was acquainted with Prince Mikasa, brother of Emperor Hirohito. Unknown to me he had shown the 1966 Envoy to the Prince, and the Prince had expressed a desire to meet me... The Prince had asked me to be his guest at luncheon the following day...

"Also my acquaintance with Prince Mikasa led to my forty-five-minute private conference with Prime Minister Sato in December...private meetings with heads of state on this high level are something vastly different than a handshake with a crowd of tourists--or, for that matter, even magazine or newspaper correspondents. A magazine correspondent or editor may, on occasion, have a private conference with a head of state. But he does not meet the ruling official on an equal level."

That is the difference. These people all realized that Mr. Armstrong was special.
"An interesting example of this, was an incident that occurred during a reception at the residence of the United States Ambassador of Nepal this past February...

"I had just returned from a visit with King Mahendra at the palace. We were hosting a dinner for important local men and their wives at the hotel that evening, but stopped off at the reception to which we had been invited.

"The Ambassador in Kathmandu [Nepal's capital] happens to be a lady, and her husband is Ambassador Ellsworth Bunker at Saigon--U.S. Ambassador to South Vietnam. He and his four or five chief assistants were in Kathmandu for the weekend.

"On learning that we had just come from meetings with the King, and with the Crown Prince the evening before--following meetings with President Giri of India, and Prime Minister Golda Meir of Israel--and on the previous trip with Prime Minister Indira Gandhi of India--at which time King Leopold was traveling with us--and that two days later we were to have a private meeting with the King of Thailand (Siam)--this government official looked puzzled, and asked, 'Well how in the world do you do it? We've been trying for six months to arrange meetings with some of these people, and yet we haven't been able.'

"And they had the power and prestige of the U.S. government!"

They could not meet with these leaders. Mr. Armstrong was invited in.
"I couldn't tell him how I arranged these meetings--because I didn't! Could you believe a Higher Power than the United States government opened these doors?"
Revelation 3:8 I know thy works: behold, I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it: for thou hast a little strength, and hast kept my word, and hast not denied my name.

In other words, "You have kept my word, and have not denied My authority to say to you: This is the way you should live if you want to be My son, having love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance."

Mr. Armstrong summed up the situation like this:

"And when you realize the doors have opened before me for eight such meetings in six months, you can believe it has been a series of providential or miraculous circumstances!"
We need to realize what God did through Mr. Armstrong. In this May 1971 co-worker, He relates one final incident:
"Last November [1970] King Leopold, his wife, Princess Liliane and daughters -- the Princesses Daphne and Esmeralda -- visited us in California. They were dinner guests in my home. After dinner that evening the King and Princess Liliane asked for a private talk We excused ourselves from the other guests and retired to a private room.

"Then in subdued, solemn and hushed tone they told me that, after World War I had ended, the King's father, King Albert, had visited one of the battlefields. He was appalled, and emotionally sick at heart at the realization of the human slaughter that had occurred there. It moved him deeply."

In one battle during World War I, 60,000 people died in one day. It was a senseless slaughter. Millions upon millions of men died during that war.
"He [King Albert] had one of the iron cannonballs remaining on the field melted and cast into four watch cases--pocket watch size--to encase four fine watches. It was his intention to present these to the four men whom he felt had made the most significant contribution toward world peace.

"World War I was the war supposed to 'make the world safe for democracy'--the war to end all wars! King Albert therefore felt the chief generals and French Premier contributed most, and gave one watch to Field Marshal Foch, Supreme Commander-in-Chief over all allied armies. The second watch was given to General Pershing, Commander-in-Chief of all United States forces. The third went to Georges Clemenceau, Premier of France during World War I. King Albert apparently found no one he felt qualified for the fourth watch. It was passed on to his son, King Leopold to give.

"In solemn and subdued voice the King said he felt the fourth watch, in a red leather case now showing age, should go to me. Both the leather case and the watch are embellished with a gold design with a royal crown in the center.

"I feel it was the very highest honour the King could have paid anyone. Whatever contribution to world peace I may have made you have shared with me, and it has not been through war, but through education, teaching millions worldwide the way to peace! And I believe King Leopold feels, and that he saw here, that we have set an example by the real peace that we do have on our three campuses! He has visited both the Pasadena and English campuses.

"Co-Workers, something very great is being accomplished through this great Work, in which you and I are both privileged to be Co-Workers. It is a greater power working through us that is producing peace, and happiness, and abundant well-being in ever-increasing thousands all over the earth! And truly, this Work is leading the way into world peace!"

"It is a greater power working through us." Isaiah 51:16 And I have put my words in thy mouth... When Mr. Armstrong went to those world leaders, he was just a vehicle. Speakers should not get lofty thoughts as to their great and tremendous ability. Remember the account of Balaam, riding along on his donkey, going to curse Israel, the angel appearing, and the donkey speaking (Numbers 22). God can speak through a donkey. Christ said: "I tell you that, if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out" (Luke 19:40).

At the Feast of Tabernacles, we hear certain scriptures repeatedly. Remember, those verses are the ones that God wants us to understand. We are very near the end of this age. Things are happening in the world right now that if I did not know the truth, I would frankly be terrified. When groups like Al Qaeda start telling Muslims to get out of New York and other big American cities, it does not bode well for the very near future.

Someone wrote concerning Mr. Armstrong's work:

"In spite of the obvious instances in which God opened the doors for this new phase of the Work, certain senior ministers, greatly lacking in vision--including uninformed elements of the membership--privately felt that these international visits were a complete waste of time!"
This same sentiment was expressed by several people at Ambassador College, Bricket Wood. They did not understand, nor did any of us really understand at the time. When you look at what was achieved then, what God used Mr. Armstrong to do, it was miraculous.

There were some people in the world who understood. After Mr. Armstrong's death Teddy Kollek, mayor of Jerusalem, with whom Mr. Armstrong was a close friend, wrote:

"One could only be deeply impressed by his vast efforts to promote understanding and peace among peoples."
Proverbs 29:18 Where there is no vision... [where you cannot see what has happened in the past and what is happening now and what the results are going to be later on] ...the people perish...

The North Koreans are threatening to do an atomic test. The Syrians are threatening to retake the Golan Heights. Pakistan and India are getting at each other's throats again, because the Indians are accusing the Pakistanis of bombing them. The worrisome thing is that both of these nations now produce nuclear weapons. Pakistan is a Muslim nation and is in open contact with Iran, who is also trying to develop an atomic weapon. Can you imagine atomic weapons in the hands of those people? World conditions are building up to the time of war that we have been talking about and, shortly after that, the Millennium where there will be peace.

Few, it seemed, could see and keep their focus on the big picture in the way that Mr. Armstrong always did. He did not visit with world leaders to try to convert them. As he wrote in an article entitled The Good News Goes To China, from the Plain Truth, February 1980:

"...I do not go to the heads of the governments of this world to judge their governments, or their religions or their educational systems. DO NOT GO TO "CONVERT" THEM--or to attempt to convince them to agree with me about the TRUTH OF GOD and the GOOD NEWS OF THE KINGDOM OF GOD, which I tell them emphatically and IN POWER is very soon coming!

"I merely tell them I am there to ANNOUNCE the coming world-ruling KINGDOM OF GOD, which shall bring THEM, and all others, PEACE AND JOY AND ETERNAL SALVATION!..."

He would tell them that there are only two ways of life -- the way of get and the way of give. This is the message we are to carry on with. We can tell people at the beginning of the Millennium, "You have just seen 6,000 years of the way of get. Now we are going to change to the way of give, looking out for our brother, where people have a genuine love for each other, where a man is not going to run off with his neighbor's wife or steal his horse or lie to him, where there are no locks on doors, where people can go out at night and sleep in safety, because there will be no animals or human beings that will want to hurt you."

We are here at God's Feast of Tabernacles learning how to become Kings and Priests, rulers and teachers, training to teach others the way of true peace, prosperity, and happiness in the Millennium.

transcribed in article form by KA. Edited by JB.

"LORD" replaced with "Eternal" our edit throughout
Emphasis ours throughout.