Hold Fast to "All things" (Herbert W Armstrong)

ATTENTION ALL MINISTERS!

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Time is running out!  You  probably WILL be offended by this message.  WHY?

Attention all true ministers of Jesus Christ!

By Daniel E. Cohran

 

In Acts chapter 6 we see the story of Stephen, a deacon whom God used to do a powerful work and witness. Verse 8 of chapter 6 states that Stephen was FULL of FAITH and power and did great wonders and signs among the people. So here was a man of God, full of faith and God’s Holy Spirit (verse 10). HOWEVER, there arose some religious leaders (ministers) of that day AGAINST what Stephen believed and taught, and as verse 9 states, they had a DISPUTE with Stephen. But it states in verse 10 that they were not able to resist or refute what he spoke, because he was full of wisdom and God’s Spirit. So what did these religious leaders do? They obviously conspired against Stephen (verses 12-13) and had him brought up before a council or tribunal.

And what happened next? Stephen gives one of the most powerful sermons recorded in God’s Word. In chapter 7 beginning in verse 2 on through verse 50 is a wonderful sermon which covers the history of these people. But he concludes his sermon in verses 51 through 53 with a stern CORRECTION and WARNING. And verse 53 shows that these were indeed people who had received the LAW.

And how was this sermon and correction received? We know the story, they KILLED Stephen!

The time we are living in today really is no different! God’s ministers whether they realize it or not, have been DISPUTING with God! The evidence is all around us. God’s Church today is shattered into hundreds and thousands of pieces. Why? In a nutshell it is because we all lost faith!  We lost faith in what God Himself revealed to us through His servant, Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong. If we still had faith, then we would still be holding on to and believing what God taught us through Mr. Armstrong.

Instead what do we see? The Church has become a pathetic spiritual swamp of lies, men’s ideas, men’s personal agendas, everyone preaching their own version of the gospel, and division upon division. All because we LOST FAITH in what God taught us. No wonder Christ asked the question: "Will the son of man find faith when He comes?…".

Christ also teaches us that a house divided cannot stand, and indeed it is not standing today. The Body of Christ still lives, but they are scattered and few. There are indeed many "churches of God" that SAY they are the Church of God. Can any ONE be right, or are they ALL wrong?

Indeed the Bible has much to say about this time now. Ezekiel 34 and Jeremiah 23 are good places to start. But there is much more. The Bible, as Mr. Armstrong taught us, is COMPLETE for us today. And it speaks loud and clear to us today, if we will LISTEN.

I know full well that the message of this article will NOT be well received by God’s ministers, wherever they are. But this is not a popularity contest. We are living in spiritually perilous and dark times. Yet the vast majority of God’s people are oblivious to this, including the ministry. And God puts the responsibility on His ministers, to PREVENT this kind of thing from happening to begin with.

Soon the great tribulation will begin and soon God’s two witnesses will be on the scene with a powerful message to REPENT and to NOT take the mark of the beast. Will God’s people even recognize them? They will not be recognized by how they look or WHO they are, but rather by WHAT THEY SAY!

Mr. Armstrong made it clear throughout the early to mid 1980’s that he was the ELIJAH to come and RESTORE ALL THINGS (Matt. 17:11). After this restoring took place and the commission of taking the gospel to the world was completed, God allowed Mr. Armstrong to die. WHY? So, as the scripture says: "the end would come". And it did. The end of the Philadelphia era occurred and the final or last or END era of Laodicea began. And for WHAT REASON? To test our FAITH! So God would know who would listen to and have FAITH IN and believe what His Son’s last command to the Philadelphia era was. – TO HOLD FAST TO WHAT YOU HAVE SO NO MAN TAKE YOUR CROWN!

Today we can see that very few have heeded that command. We see God’s people being led astray, in many different directions from what God taught us DURING the Philadelphia era.

It’s time to WAKE UP and REPENT, and return to the Plumbline that God laid in the hands of His end time Zerubbabel! Time is running out on all of us, and especially for God’s ministry. You all know well, or SHOULD know, the serious responsibility that God puts on His true ministers. To cause or allow even one of His sheep to go astray from His truth will result in grave consequences for the minister or ministers responsible. And that is exactly what has happened today in virtually every branch or splinter or "Church of God" that has branched off of what was once the Worldwide Church of God.

It’s time to WAKE UP and realize that the True Gospel HAS BEEN preached to ALL the world as a "witness" under the leadership of God’s apostle, Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong, and that Matthew 24:14 is now FULFILLED PROPHECY!

It’s time to WAKE UP and realize that as Mr. Armstrong taught us, it was the apostle’s job to take that gospel message to the world, and that he also said that NO ONE would take his place in this job.

It’s time to WAKE UP and REPENT of petty differences between all of these splinters of what was once a united Church, and return to that foundation which was laid by God’s end time servant.

It’s time to WAKE UP and annoint our EYES so that we may SEE, that spiritually we are SICK! We are blind and miserable and naked and don't even realize it!

It’s time to WAKE UP and REPENT of the Laodicean condition and attitude which is: "LET ME DECIDE" what is right and wrong and "LET ME DECIDE" what God’s work should be.

It’s time to REPENT of our SELF-RIGHTEOUSNESS and huge EGO’S and RETURN to what was restored through God’s end time apostle.

It’s time to HUMBLE ourselves under the Mighty Hand of God, and return to the TRUE WAY that He so wonderfully and gracefully showed us for over 50 years in the Philadelphia era.

It’s time to take a STAND or STAND UP and CONTEND for the FAITH once delivered (Jude 3). And that FAITH and belief was once delivered to us here in the end time by God through His apostle. WHO is doing this today? There is no strong leadership like we had under Mr. Armstrong. He would NOT COMPROMISE one iota with God’s Law! Today there is compromise EVERYWHERE in the "churches of God". Who is going to defend the standard that God set for His people?

It’s time to do this or we will lose our physical and perhaps even eternal lives. God gave us the knowledge we need. It is our responsibility to do what we will with it. Many have already squandered it. But God is a merciful God, but He also will not wait forever. He has a timetable, and prophecy WILL continue to be fulfilled. This final era will not last much longer. There will be a time in the approximate immediate future when things in this world will SUDDENLY CHANGE!

What will we do then?………………..

 

So Where Are We today?

This is where we find ourselves today, going on 21 years since God’s end time Elijah died:

"But I say to you that Elijah has come already, and they did not know him but did to him whatever they wished." (Matt. 17:12)

Yes he (Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong) came and restored all things. And he even said that he did that and that he fulfilled the Elijah office. But WE did not know him. We "thought" we did but we did not. He said that we did NOT GET IT! And he was absolutely right. So as a result, just as the scripture says, we did TO HIM whatever we wished. We watered down and ALLOWED the watering down of the precious things that were restored.

We did whatever we wished to him by allowing the Church to be divided into many factions or groups, and by allowing many different "ideas" to spring forth as to what God’s work should be and how it should be done.

We did whatever we wished to him by changing or doing away with vital doctrines that were given to us through him BY Jesus Christ Himself.

We did whatever we wished to him by allowing men to speak out against him, as they endeavered to show their spiritual superiority and scholarly aptitude, while belittling what God taught us through him.

Shame on all of us! We lost faith! What we have done collectively as God’s Church is no less than large scale SPIRITUAL ADULTERY! We are in dire need of TRUE REPENTANCE!

We SHOULD have been at the stage of the "Bride" preparing herself for the marriage to the Lamb. Is the bride ready? What do you think? Is Christ going to come to a divided fiance’ ? In other words, a bride with multiple personalities? Multiple gospels, and ways of keeping God’s Law? Absolutely NOT! Christ says He has only the ONE Church, and that it would not die.

What we fail to see is that in God’s eyes, we are ALL still His Church, although most of us call ourselves by many different names now. We are all divided, but we are NOT supposed to be divided!

There are some offshoots today that say THEY are the "True Church" that Christ will return to. Is this true? If that was the case then that would mean that all the other thousands of scattered members were no longer God’s people! Did God say this? Of course not! You will not find that in His Word.

If Christ can’t or will not come to His Church UNTIL we are again united, then WHAT will it take to again re-UNITE His Church? We as "spiritual" Israelites, are indeed just as hard headed as our forefathers the physical Israelites! It will take nothing short of a MIRACLE to begin to WAKE UP the people of God.

And that miracle is coming in the form of the prophesied Great Tribulation and the prophesied testimony of God’s two witnesses. Through them, God will again show the way for those with a humble heart and repentant attitude.

It would behoove us all to take a closer look at a prayer by the prophet Daniel. It was a prayer of repentance. And when you look closely at this prayer and apply it spiritually today, it is indeed a wake-up call for all of us. I can find no better way to end this article then by posting this prayer below. So, in Dan. 9:4-19, it says:

Dan 9:4 And I prayed to the LORD my God, and made confession, and said, "O Lord, great and awesome God, who keeps His covenant and mercy with those who love Him, and with those who keep His commandments,

Dan 9:5 "we have sinned and committed iniquity, we have done wickedly and rebelled, even by departing from Your precepts and Your judgments.

Dan 9:6 "Neither have we heeded Your servants the prophets, who spoke in Your name to our kings and our princes, to our fathers and all the people of the land.

Dan 9:7 "O Lord, righteousness belongs to You, but to us shame of face, as it is this day; to the men of Judah, to the inhabitants of Jerusalem and all Israel, those near and those far off in all the countries to which You have driven them, because of the unfaithfulness which they have committed against You.

Dan 9:8 "O Lord, to us belongs shame of face, to our kings, our princes, and our fathers, because we have sinned against You.

Dan 9:9 "To the Lord our God belong mercy and forgiveness, though we have rebelled against Him.

Dan 9:10 "We have not obeyed the voice of the LORD our God, to walk in His laws, which He set before us by His servants the prophets.

Dan 9:11 "Yes, all Israel has transgressed Your law, and has departed so as not to obey Your voice; therefore the curse and the oath written in the Law of Moses the servant of God have been poured out on us, because we have sinned against Him.

Dan 9:12 "And He has confirmed His words, which He spoke against us and against our judges who judged us, by bringing upon us a great disaster; for under the whole heaven such has never been done as what has been done to Jerusalem.

Dan 9:13 "As it is written in the Law of Moses, all this disaster has come upon us; yet we have not made our prayer before the LORD our God, that we might turn from our iniquities and understand Your truth.

Dan 9:14 "Therefore the LORD has kept the disaster in mind, and brought it upon us; for the LORD our God is righteous in all the works which He does, though we have not obeyed His voice.

Dan 9:15 "And now, O Lord our God, who brought Your people out of the land of Egypt with a mighty hand, and made Yourself a name, as it is this day; we have sinned, we have done wickedly!

Dan 9:16 "O Lord, according to all Your righteousness, I pray, let Your anger and Your fury be turned away from Your city Jerusalem, Your holy mountain; because for our sins, and for the iniquities of our fathers, Jerusalem and Your people are a reproach to all those around us.

Dan 9:17 "Now therefore, our God, hear the prayer of Your servant, and his supplications, and for the Lord's sake cause Your face to shine on Your sanctuary, which is desolate.

Dan 9:18 "O my God, incline Your ear and hear; open Your eyes and see our desolations, and the city which is called by Your name; for we do not present our supplications before You because of our righteous deeds, but because of Your great mercies.

Dan 9:19 "O Lord, hear! O Lord, forgive! O Lord, listen and act! Do not delay for Your own sake, my God, for Your city and Your people are called by Your name."

END

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