from our readers
There was standing
room only at the memorial service for Marv Davis on June 25. Brethren
from many church groups or fellowships and friends from the past
who no longer attend any church were there. Several hadn't seen
one another for many years.
Dave Havir, pastor
of the Church of God Big Sandy, conducted the service. Eight longtime
friends gave their recollections of great times with Marv and Millie
(his wife). The recurring theme seemed to be what a great friend
Marv was to so many people. He sincerely loved God and his fellowman.
He was above all a servant.
Marv hated the
split-up of the Church of God . He was bothered by the scattering and tried
through the Building Bridges meetings to provide an opportunity
for brethren to occasionally get together for an inspiring message
and fellowship. He felt it was such a shame that some can't (or
won't) recognize the benefit of building and maintaining friendships
across church lines. If we can't worship together, at least maintain
truly seemed to enjoy being together.
Marv would have
loved to be there.
Dan bears Arnold
no ill will
I want to thank
Arnold Denney for the tongue-in-cheek response ["When in Doubt,
Start a New Church," May 31, page 2] to my interview ["Elder
Protests United Church of God Move to Relieve Him of Duties"] that appeared
in the April 15 edition of The Journal.
I have to conclude
that it was written tongue in cheek because I'm sure no one would
have reached the conclusion that I was interested in being president
of the United Church of God an International Association from reading
Thanks also to
Mr. Denney for insight into how things work in the corporations
and organizations. I appreciate the suggestions and hope I can use
some of them.
But I will respond
here to some of them.
you mentioned that Roger West never wavered from the Worldwide Church
of God's teaching; he even accommodated the [doctrinal] changes.
That was indeed my impression from a reliable source who said that at the Feast in Chattanooga, Tenn. (I believe), in 1994 Roger encouraged the audience to follow Joseph Tkach Sr. as the Egyptians and the other brothers of Joseph were to follow Joseph, son of Jacob. He evidently spent much of his sermon making a connection between the two Josephs.
I especially appreciate
your mention of Matthew 25:31-40 and James 1:26-27. Unless we practice
pure religion, unless we have and express love (1 Corinthians 13),
we can have practically everything else and still have nothing.
You mention that
I would do well to imitate Joseph Tkach Sr. I appreciate that you
and others have found his example in this area exemplary and were
inspired by his deeds. We should rejoice in the cases where widows,
orphans and the downtrodden were appropriately served.
We all have a
perspective based on our actual experience. My experience with Joe
Sr. was as follows:
In the spring
of 1977 a lady friend of mine had fallen on hard times. She was
depressed and needed encouragement. I made every effort to provide
that comfort. She was penniless, and I loaned her some money. But
I was not in a position to provide that need, so I encouraged her
to contact the church (WCG) for assistance.
That night two
men broke into her apartment, stole the money I had loaned her and
I raised my voice
in my displeasure, informing him that I thought that someone who
considers himself a minister of Jesus Christ has no right to ask
if a converted, baptized individual who has fallen on hard times
is worth helping.
Also, during the
receivership of the WCG in 1979, a day came when the deputies were
gathered at Brookside Park by the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif.,
to decide how they might gain access to the church's administration
At that time Joe
Sr. was coordinating sit-ins and services in the building.
When the deputies
arrived at the doors of the Hall of Administration, and there was
that possibility they would actually break the glass in the doors
and walls to attain access, the order was given to put women and
children next to the walls and doors so that if any glass were broken
it would fall on the women and the children--the thought being that
that would make a bigger news story than if glass had fallen on
So, although I
appreciate that Joe Sr. was an inspiration to many, I have no intention
of following the aspects of his example that I know about.
Arnold, you next
mentioned that, if I cannot bridle my tongue concerning the resurrection
and calendar, I should start my own church. It seems you base your
advice on the actions of WCG founder Herbert W. Armstrong when he
did not bridle his tongue regarding God's festivals and other matters
and started another church.
Thank you for
your suggestion and interest. May I offer you association with and
membership in my "new church"?
Let's see if I
have this down pat as to how churches should operate. From my recent
experience, I should notify you that you will be a member in good
standing as long as you believe everything I believe.
I will not take
responsibility for your believing these things on judgment day (Romans
14:10). At that time you will be on your own.
was established when Jim Franks, Richard Pinelli, Roger West and
Bob Hedge refused to sign the affidavits [mentioned in The Journal's
interview with me in the April 15 issue].
Since your "membership"
has not been lengthy enough for you to be considered for the ministry,
I cannot threaten to suspend you from the ministry nor recommend
that the council remove you from the general conference of elders
and revoke your credentials.
But, if you do
disagree with anything I believe, and you attempt to tell others
by sending letters to The Journal, you will be disfellowshipped
for doctrinal differences and for sowing discord.
Uh-oh, while I
am yet writing this the thought police have confirmed that indeed
you do not believe everything I believe, and it has been determined
that you are actually considering writing another letter to The
Journal. Therefore action must be taken immediately.
with biblical commands and the doctrine and long-standing practices
of the church, it is with deep and sincere regret and my unpleasant
duty to confirm your disfellowshipment from my "new church"
for doctrinal differences and the sowing of discord among the membership.
As a result of your disfellowshipment, you are not welcome to attend
services or activities.
The church does
not, nor do I, bear you any ill will, and we fervently pray that
God will grant you repentance and ultimate reconciliation.
That is how it
goes, isn't it?
a report on Mr. Cafourek's recent disfellowshipping beginning on
page 1 of this issue.
bride of Christ
I just finished
reading the interview with Larry Greider ["Regional Pastor
Denies Elder's Allegations," The Journal, April 15]. Larry
said, "I do not recall ever saying that."
For the record,
I was present when he indeed did say: "I believe that the United
Church of God is the bride of Jesus Christ. At best, the other religious
groups are bridesmaids."
I was disfellowshipped
in '99 from the United Church of God after false accusations had
arisen against me of judgmentalism and dividing the church. I had
sought to resolve these by Matthew 18:15-17, but the parties were
not able to meet.
Finally Gary Antion,
my pastor in United Church of God Toronto, had heard enough and decided to expel
me. On that day he uttered this blasphemy: "If one does not
work, he should not go to the Feast."
In rare correspondence
since then, the council has repeatedly asked for my self-examination,
when godly justice is what is required.
wrote to a potential witness to testify on my behalf, but he did
not reply. According to the appeal policy, without additional evidence
the council cannot reinstate a member. They have cut me off for
Why does the council
not fear Jesus Christ and obey the Word? "You shall not raise
a false report" (Exodus 23:1); "put not your hand with
the wicked to be an unrighteous witness" (same verse); "you
shall not wrest the judgment of your poor in his cause" (verse
6); "keep you far from a false matter" (verse 7); "slay
not the innocent and righteous" (same verse).
Learn and practice
Like a moth drawn
to a candle flame, I must subscribe for at least the next six months.
Thank you for the sample, the April 15 issue. Please begin with
it because I surely want to read Samuele Bacchiocchi's second part
of his divorce-and-remarriage essay. Part 1 gave closure to a question
I've wrestled with from time to time.
were named in the issue, even some with photographs. The one fellow
I know best, Dan Cafourek, was treated about as unjustly as any
dear brother of mine. I've been too many years in the Churches of
God, and I've known too many thousand of the brethren, not to be
totally aggravated by what I read therein about Dan.
In my opinion
the bottom line of Christianity is to learn and practice loving
your neighbor as yourself. It is vividly apparent to me that many
brethren, especially the rulers over us, pastors and ministers,
still haven't gotten that message.
No blacks in
We write to inform
you that we are pleased with your work with The Journal. In reading,
we get a sense of true journalism at work.
We have been asked
by most members of our assembly why aren't there any blacks and/or
other nationalities portrayed in The Journal, and we could not give
an accurate answer. We said, however, that we were in The Journal
in issue No. 54, July 2001, along with two other blacks who were
Jamaicans, and that was one big article. We also said perhaps the
other nationalities are not taking advantage of the opportunity
to contact The Journal with their articles.
As an official
affiliate of the CGI [the Church of God International], we would
like to see you put something in your next issue inviting other
nationalities to feel free to be subscribers and to send in their
articles to The Journal to reflect a broader sense of participation
and also to reflect an unbiased leadership. We will be sending you
an article soon for one of your issues. If you wish, you may also
publish this letter.
Please see renewal
fee for one year. Keep up the good work!
Robert F. Woodland, D.D.
I was interested
to read that the United Church of God (United Church of God ) chose for its general
conference of elders the theme "Equipping the Saints for the
Work of Ministry" ["United Elders Meet for Eighth Time;
Church Names New Chairman, Dedicates New Building," The Journal,
Melvin Rhodes pointing out that the "ministry" discussed
in Ephesians 4:12 concerns nonelder members of the church and that
members are to minister to one another in edifying ways, such as
helping to overcome sin ["Help the Brethren Help the Brethren,"
However, the conference's
keynote speaker, Gary Petty, concluded that it is the apostles,
pastors, etc., of verse 11 who are said in verse 12 to edify (build
up) the Body.
Mr. Petty, the United Church of God in its Bible-study course, Lesson 10, seems to
ignore the edifying ministry of Ephesians 4:12, which all saints
are to perform, and about verses 11-13 writes:
"These serving responsibilities were given for the benefit of the whole Church, to help equip, edify and unify the Body. A person ordained to such responsibilities is generally called a 'minister,' a word that means servant. In the Scriptures they are also referred to as elders."
The United Church of God 's United
News summary of Mr. Rhodes' presentation also appears to avoid applying
the term ministry to what all saints are called to do, saying, "This
involves preparing them to help the ministry, and also to help others
in the Church."
"the work of the ministry" certainly does not mean "work
done to help a group of people who call themselves 'the ministry.' "
So which is it?
Is the edifying mentioned in Ephesians 4:12 to be done by the saints
of verse 12, or is it limited to the "apostles, pastors,"
etc., of verse 11?
One key to the
answer involves the verse's prepositions. They are pros before "the
equipping" and eis before both "the work" and "the
The KJV disregards
this change in preposition and wrongly translates them equally as
"For . . ., for . . ., for . . .,"
giving the impression that apostles, prophets, etc., were given
for three purposes: the equipping, the work and the edifying.
The brunt of scholarship
recognizes the eis clauses as subordinate, successively looking
to a result. Thus the first clause ("equipping of the saints")
looks to the second ("equipped to be able to minister"),
with the second looking to the third ("to minister so that
the body is edified").
The sense is that
Christ gave apostles, prophets, etc., for the equipping of the saints
so that they are prepared to do works of ministry, which results
in the edifying of the Body.
prepare God's people for works of service, so that the body of Christ
may be built up."
the equipping of the saints for the work of service, to the building
up of the body of Christ."
did this to prepare all God's people for the work of Christian service,
in order to build up the body of Christ."
equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body
equip the saints for the work of ministry, that is, to build up
the body of Christ."
Each member has
his or her gift(s) of ministry with which to upbuild the church.
The purpose of the various ministries in verse 11 is to prepare
or equip God's people so they practice their ministries unto the
edification of the Body through their individual ("particular")
The Churches of
God past and present with little variance hold the following mistaken
are those to minister with spiritual gifts to the edification of
are those not to minister with spiritual gifts to the edification
of the Body.
The idea that
there is a division of "the ministering" from "the
nonministering," or that edifying gifts are concentrated only
upon a few, is not biblical.
part of the spiritual Body is to minister toward the spiritual edification
of the whole Body:
The whole body ... grows and builds itself up in love, as each part
does its work" (Ephesians 4:16).
the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit
of all" (1 Corinthians 12:7).
we are "members one of another, having then gifts differing
according to the grace that is given to us . . ." (Romans
each one has received the gift, even so minister the same one to
another" (1 Peter 4:10).
wish you all ... prophesied ..., that the church may receive edification"
(1 Corinthians 14:5).
let us pursue the things ... by which one may edify another"
comfort each other and edify one another ..." (1 Thessalonians
is it then, brethren, when ye come together, every one of you hath
a psalm, hath a doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation, hath
an interpretation?" (1 Corinthians 14:26).
forsaking the assembling of ourselves together ... but exhorting
one another" (Hebrews 10:25).
If we follow the
teachings of the apostles, and if elders recognize their role, then
the saints will be encouraged (by the gifts given to the apostles,
pastors and others) to use their own individual "particular
gift(s)" unto the mutual edifying of the Body of Christ unto
the end that we all, as one body, are complete, even unto the measure
of the stature of the fullness of Christ.
Back on track?
I think Melvin
Rhodes ["Help the Brethren Help the Brethren," The Journal,
May 31] forgot a couple of reasons for disfellowshipping in the
traditional Worldwide Church of God of the past. Questioning the
leadership doctrine and the failure to pay tithes or tuition on
a timely basis were a couple of unforgettable ones, none of which
And is Mr. Rhodes
telling us that the United Church of God will now train the leadership
to get all of her disfellowshipped back on the true path ("track")
of Armstrongism or that it will point them to the Scriptures and
to following Christ in an individual relationship with Him?
Should we worship
Steve and Terry
Durham, whom I consider longtime friends, introduced me to The Journal.
I was a Radio
Church of God and Worldwide Church of God member during the '60s
and have been outside the camp for several years. It has been my
lot to grapple with some questions that should be answerable, I
I am impressed
by the scholarship of your contributors. They seem to have a lot
of answers. However, they do not seem to deal with the questions
that have concerned me through the years.
I include a few
of these questions here in the hope that latter-day scholars will
comment on them (no disrespect intended). No church group, to my
knowledge, had better scholars than the WCG, although I do not think
they were used to their full potential. Questions:
Is it possible
to worship the Bible? People keep saying the Bible says such and
such. Is there something wrong with my Bibles or me? My Bibles never
say anything to me, but if they do start talking to me should I
worship them? My Bibles just lie there on the floor where I throw
them after telling our heavenly Father I do not understand this
I might understand
where writers are coming from if they said John, Peter or Luke said
something rather than the "Bible said" something.
scriptural authors more important, doctrinally, than others? Luke,
in his Gospel, claims his material is hearsay evidence (second-hand
information). Such information would not be acceptable in any man's
court of law. Should we give such evidence equal doctrinal consideration
as the apparent firsthand, eyewitness information of John's and
say Matthew and Luke were written after Mark and that Matthew and
Luke used Mark's Gospel as part of their input for their Gospels.
If Mark's Gospel is scripture, what are they doing adding to it?
Is there something wrong with Mark's Gospel? Should we throw Mark's
Gospel out of our Bibles? Is it possible that Matthew and Luke were
writing historical commentaries not meant specifically for doctrinal
On the other hand,
if Mark's Gospel were written after Luke's and Matthew's, maybe
Mark was making a doctrinal statement by what he put in and left
out. Is that possible?
I would appreciate
input on these questions, public or private. I am interested in
opening dialogues with persons who believe Jesus is the Messiah,
the only begotten Son of our heavenly Father. I am not interested
in dialogues based on assumptions, superstitions, traditions, customs,
Bible trivia, sacraments and other nonspiritual diversionary issues
You may consider
me cynical and sarcastic. I hope you will pray that our heavenly
Father will make all things to His glory, honor and praise through
Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior forever. Amen.
The need to
It's ironic that
you would use the word morgue to refer to your past issues of The
Yes, I know that
someone was just trying to be grammatically diverse, but a morgue
is exactly how I see The Journal. You are displaying the body, not
with embalming fluid but in its vilest, most depredated state.
It's a dirty job
but someone has to do it, "write"?
Don't mind me,
but you might want to check with God, who is keeping a journal as
well. Show some honor and respect. Bury the body.
For Mr. Yow's
information, morgue is a time-honored term in the publishing business
that refers to the collection of back issues, or archives, of a
Cease and desist
Your use of the
term morgue as a section on your Web site [www.thejournal.org] is
encroaching on the intellectual property of the Graveyard Church
of God (GCG).
While the church is currently in receivership under The Painful Truth's Web site, be assured that Mr. Armstrong is still in full control from his temporary crypt in Tucson. Remove the term immediately or face the wrath of God's apostle, who, given what has been going on in the Churches of God, has plenty to be mad about.
In our zeal to
protect Mr. Armstrong's legacy, even we overlooked that this term
and its misuse were duly noted in Dr. Hoeh's magnum opus, The Compendium,
on the bottom of page 666. It shows that Satan caused the term to
be used in the newspaper industry to cause a stumbling block to
the work in the end times. This only confirms that The Journal is
in fact a tool of Satan.
Stan is on the
payroll until 2003, so I will have him look into litigating against
the gates of hell.
P.S.: Mr. Armstrong
fully endorses the plan to save Petra for the children but asserts
that Darlene Warren ["Save Petra for Our Children," The
Journal, April 15, page 11] plagiarized the concept from a Youth
Opportunities Underground (YOU) handbook published by the GCG.
If the millstone
fits, wear it
I read with interest
the article "Church of God Author Presents a New View of Prophecy"
[The Journal, March 25].
My wife and I
were born in the British Isles and lived there during the transition
of British membership into the European Economic Community. A think
tank was created when Margaret Thatcher was Britain's prime minister
to discuss how to deal with Germany flexing its economic and political
It concluded simply,
"Be nice to them." In other words, Germany was in control.
We have watched for 40 years as Germany has led the drive to unite Europe with the help of the Vatican. Germany has controlled the purse strings of the EEC [now the EC, or European Community] from the beginning, with an economy twice as large as any other EEC country. Germany's financial contribution determines whether any project is undertaken or rejected.
In the Middle
East it was German corporations that built the plants and supplied
materials for Libyan and Iraqi chemical- and germ-warfare experiments
and possibly their nuclear-weapons developments. German scientists
have no doubt benefited from these programs.
One year ago the
European space commission announced its intention to put a man on
the moon within five years. This will give Germany the right to
develop additional long-range rockets on German soil, in addition
to the Aryan rocket project.
In the near future
it will be possible for Europe to have lasers and nuclear weapons
in orbit a mere 200 miles above U.S. cities. The world does not
agree with our bombing foreign countries back to the stone age,
and one day soon Germany will respond with a bigger, smarter bomb.
A world colossus
is being formed to come against us, led by Germany and with the
Vatican wielding its influence over one billion of the earth's population
to help make this happen. Assyria remains the rod of God's wrath,
and those prophecies are dual.
Mr. Collins' reason
for writing is to justify his own belief that "God will spare
Britain and America." Sadly, this is not so. Mr. Collins is
a self-appointed writer-researcher who predicts "prophesied
end-time fulfillment will come as a surprise to the Church of God."
He condemns Herbert W. Armstrong's end-time prophetic teaching as
a lack of "firm biblical foundation," and he dismisses
any idea that a German-European attack on the United States will
come any time soon as "divorced from reality."
He believes that
Mr. Armstrong's understanding of end-time prophecy has "blinded"
people to "what is going on in the world" and that "the
church's prophetic teachings" failed "over and over again."
prophetic understanding is being fulfilled. Even the apostles believed
Christ would return in their lifetime. This is an assumption that
Mr. Armstrong held dear, just as the apostles did. For Mr. Collins
to make so many condemning and misleading statements against the
truth is, to say the least, a dangerous mistake on his part. Jesus
Christ's millstone criterion still applies.
I read with interest
the article by Bill Stough in the March 25 issue concerning Steven
Collins' new models for end-time prophetic events ["Church of God Author
Presents a New View of Prophecy"].
Mr. Collins' claim that an end-time conflict between a revitalized
Germany and the United States "has no support in the Bible"
especially provoked me. I flatly disagree with this statement, and
I am concerned that brethren may be misled from some plain scriptures
in the Bible that do demonstrate this final conflict.
Since 1963 I too
have questioned the church's understanding of prophecy and offered
suggestions, but never to the point of rejecting core information.
I was called when
I was 10 years old. When I was 13 I excitedly told some schoolmates,
"Germany is going to attack America."
One of them turned
on me and said: "You're crazy. Germany doesn't have the bomb."
taught me how myopic the church could be and set me on my own quest
Much later, in
1982, I was able to be of use to Dr. Herman Hoeh and Herbert Armstrong
in providing the final piece of information proving the end-time
identity of Assyria and confirming the future invasion of the United
When Mr. Collins
speaks against a European invasion, he cuts to the heart of something
I know I proved 20 years ago to myself and to the highest officers
of the church [the Worldwide Church of God].
Lest you think
me irrational, let me quickly explain what I am referring to. It
is a footnote to our common past.
Before 1982, when
Mr. Armstrong talked or wrote about modern Germany being prophetic
Assyria, he would from time to time refer to the book of Nahum,
which is addressed to Nineveh, the ancient capital of Assyria. He
would explain that prophecy was dual and that in the last days another
capital of a modern Assyria would again strike modern-day Israel,
the United States.
At the time he
wrote, Eastern Europe was under Soviet control, Germany was divided,
and so was Berlin, its former capital.
Mr. Armstrong made was that Nineveh would be the future capital
of a united Germany, and the modern city was too obscure to identify.
It could be Munich or Bonn or Berlin or perhaps some other city.
By God's grace
I was able to demonstrate from history and Scripture that Nineveh
was not really German in the modern sense; it was actually Vienna,
Austria, the seat of the former Holy Roman Empire.
I wrote the paper
in the spring of 1982. In the fall of that year Dr. Hoeh sent me
a handwritten note, a copy of which I have included with this letter,
thanking me and saying, "Most everything you say falls into
I showed Dr. Hoeh's
reply to my then pastor, James Jenkins, and sometime after he made
the comment to me, "Tony, if what you say is true, then Eastern
Europe will have to fall from Russian control."
Mind you, this
conclusion was made with a model of prophecy that Mr. Collins now
As some of you
may remember, Mr. von Habsburg visited Ambassador College in the
early part of 1983, and he even published some of his thoughts on
a united Europe in The Plain Truth in 1984. All of this was a direct
result of my paper.
Mr. Collins says
there is no biblical proof that Assyria will attack, overrun, spoil
and take captive Manasseh-America in the last days. On the contrary,
Isaiah 10:5-6 is plain:
also shows that God is severely punishing His people through the
actions of the Assyrians.
In Isaiah 10:5
God shows that Assyria is His instrument of punishment. In verse
12 He shows that when He has fully finished with decimating His
people, and only when He is finished, He will turn to punish the
Germans. There is no answering of prayer here to deliver Israel
until the job has been completed. This tells me that Mr. Collins'
use of Joel 2 is misapplied to a wrong moment in time.
of similar phrases in the book of Nahum and Isaiah 10 will exhaustively
prove identities and end-time roles.
These things are
basic. Whatever new insights one may have about prophecy, it is
a mistake, in my opinion, to reject these clear scriptures.
If God's people
lose sight of foundational truths, they will be in danger of not
being ready when Christ returns. I would not want to be accused
of God for causing that to happen to my brothers and sisters.
Mr. Collins says
Germany is a truly democratic nation with no reason to attack America.
I beg to differ. If the 20th century was known as the American century,
it was also the century America jerked Germany around.
How free of American
influence has Germany really been in the last 80 years, and, if
not, why would that not be remembered? In my opinion NATO was designed
to muzzle Germany as much as it was intended to protect it.
So the iron and
clay Mr. Collins refers to is real, but it has a dog's leash running
through the middle of it that is not liked.
Mr. Collins' historical
assumptions are not well proven, and his use of Scripture needs
greater depth. I applaud many of his intentions, but I strongly
disagree with what he has produced from them.
The basic foundation
of prophecy set by Mr. Armstrong is from Christ. If various details
do need refinement, it is because Mr. Armstrong consciously chose
not to pursue certain areas that would have clarified issues. At
one point he told us, "All the foundational knowledge has been
revealed." In one sense that is true; in another sense that
is not true. Everything depends on the context in which we view
I look forward
to Mr. Collins' future work, but I am concerned we use care and
caution in this most difficult business of rightly dividing Christ's
word of prophecy. Prophecy is not just the world's future; it is
also ours. We'd better get it right.
discussion on whether unborn fetuses will be resurrected prompted
by the article quoting Garner Ted Armstrong ["GTA Comments
on 'Breath of Life,' Abortions," The Journal, Nov. 30, 2001]:
Will God resurrect
the unborn? Adam and Eve, yes. But what if the unborn is merely
a zygote (union of sperm and egg)? It might begin to grow in a wrong
location and not develop.
About half of
fertilized eggs naturally abort or miscarry. Sonograms may show
two in the womb, but only one is born later. The other might naturally
decompose. It would be difficult to have a funeral in that case.
It is claimed
that all who lived both small and great will come up, but Revelation
20:12-13 does not say "all."
Here are reasons
God might limit the resurrected to those who are born or live a
few days after birth:
is named as a boy at circumcision on the eighth day (Luke 1:59-63;
the Bible consider a person as such after birth since his age is
counted after birth, not conception.
is deemed to come into the world at birth (John 16:21).
ceremony is not performed for a zygote, embryo or fetus that dies.
The dead parts must be expelled by the uterus naturally or be removed
otherwise to avoid infection. There is no casket for a few cells,
an embryonic body or undeveloped one.
be resurrected having done good or evil (John 5:28-29; 2 Corinthians
5:10), but a fetus cannot do good or evil. The unborn are not capable
of knowing or doing good or evil (Deuteronomy 1:39; Isaiah 7:16).
The wicked go astray after birth (Psalm 58:3).
Job wrote about an "untimely birth," referring to one
born too soon to live outside the womb as if he never existed (Job
1:20-21 is used to emphasize Christ was human and named before birth,
but it states Mary will bring forth a son and call Him Jesus. This
occurred after birth (as Luke 1:31). It is obvious that the leaping
for joy by the fetus of John the Baptizer while in the womb was
motivated by the Holy Spirit.
to indicate for the resurrection that infants will be taken from
those who have survived at least a few days from birth (Isaiah 65:20).
not enough room on the planet during the second resurrection if
all the unborn are included (made adults as Adam).
have multiple miscarriages. Where is the cry of indignation that
these did not have proper burial?
treats untimely births as nonhumans. Babies are considered human
if they can survive outside the womb. What child considers a zygote
that died in his mother as a brother or sister?
It is likely that
the spirit in man is received at conception. This does not mean
God is obligated to resurrect. As the Master Potter, He can start
a life as clay, but He does not have to finish it.
I am not advocating
abortions or the Greco-Roman equivalent of infanticide by exposure
(discarding the baby at birth as was God's figurative wife; Ezekiel
Grist for women's
Atlanta women's conference, reported in the June 30, 2001, issue
of The Journal, Dean Neal writes in The Journal of July 31, 2001
["Junia's Name," page 5]: "Why do you find mostly
men as creators of manufactured things, buildings, roads, bridges,
vehicles? Go to any project of consequence and see just who--pardon
the expression--mans the job."
Could it be that
man mans the job because Yahve (God) gave man the precious gift
of imagination, and, since imagination is the very core of human
development and existence, it was absolutely essential that this
gift be given to man since he would not be impeded by child bearing
or child rearing?
Yahve also gave
the most precious gift of intuition to women. Intuition comes from
the heart. Since all newborn (helpless) children require the unstinting
devotion and affection of a loving mother, Yahve provided those
mothers with intuition and a high degree of loyalty that only a
woman is capable of providing.
Mr. Neal's one-sided
comments extolling man's achievements give the women's-liberation
movement the reason for its existence. When writing about man's
achievements, Mr. Neal would be well advised to remember two quotations:
"Behind every successful man there is a woman" and "It's
the hand that rocks the cradle that rules the world."
Women are distractions
at least one lonely rabbi, Pinchas Stolper, Lakewood, N.J., agrees
with me (as quoted in The Jerusalem Report of July 1):
"In the synagogue,
the dignity of the community is measured by one word: tzni'ut (modesty);
i.e., limiting to the most reasonable extent the magnetic attractiveness
of women, which is the one factor (aside from talking during prayer)
which has the ability to distract and to defeat the majesty of divinity.
mother do not kiss their son or daughter while in the synagogue.
Why? Because all attention, emotion and sentiment is directed to
God alone. The one powerful force which has the ability to undercut
our ability to direct our full attention to God is the attractiveness
and sexual magnetism of women.
are highly visible and distracting, while God is invisible, women
are careful when attending the synagogue to be modestly dressed
and to be seated in the women's section where their attractiveness
does not draw male attention from the sanctity of the Divine Presence.
brief is why women are not called to the Torah. The issue is not
female equality, but the universal weakness of men in the presence
I couldn't have
said it better myself.
Did you know that
there is a book called World Without Cancer? If I were you, I would
order the book real fast, before it is too late and you cannot get
the book anymore. The book is the story of vitamin B17.
Frans had cancer
and had his bladder removed. He also had pancreatic cancer, which
the doctors dared not operate on.
Frans had lost
18 pounds, even though he was eating extremely large amounts. He
had his blood checked once a month.
On my advice he
started eating apricot kernels. After two weeks of eating the kernels,
he had his blood checked. Then the doctors exclaimed: Your blood
is exceptionally good!
From that time
on, he has been growing and is back to his original weight. This
was more than three years ago.
Now the doctor
says: "You know what you are? You are a miracle."
The doctor knows
Frans should have died.
Then there is
Keith, with one kidney removed and a big part of his stomach removed.
Keith's doctor sent him home to die because he could do nothing.
eating apricot kernels, rich in vitamin B17. Now he is healed.
I have no connection
with the publisher of this book, but please order it for $17.50
plus $5.85 for shipping (to U.S. addresses) for one copy from American
Media, P.O. Box 4646, Westlake Village, Calif. 91359. Or phone (800)
593-6596. Or order it online at www.realityzone.com.
and you'll hemorrhage
I just read the
latest Journal [March 25]. I would like to thank you for your fair
and positive report on our conference in March ["CGOM Discusses
Change in Donations Policy," March 25 issue]. Appreciated!
You have insights that I missed!
On another subject:
So, more calendar
theories! I now have quite a collection, all differing: Different
theories as to when to begin to calculate. Different theories of
what is a new moon. Different theories on what astronomical data
to use. Etc.
The result, of
course, is a variety of festival dates varying by--this year--from
one day to more than a month and even two months.
But one thing
that isn't different: All proposed solutions to the supposed calendar
conundrum are divinely inspired. To me that is a bit confusing.
Many views, too, are somewhat aggressive, even arrogant. Believe
I wonder what
the cumulative spent time has been on all this research effort.
wasn't the standard Worldwide explanation but didn't change that
practice. What the explanation does is undercut the various arguments.
It's simple, too, and it can be summed up in a few words. (The article
is available from CGOM in Tulsa, P.O. Box 564621, Tulsa, Okla. 74155,
U.S.A., or from me, P.O. Box 2525, Lincoln LN5 7PF, England.)
God gave us--mankind--the
festivals for several reasons. One core reason is to bring God's
people together unitedly in His presence for worship and for fellowship
and for mutual instruction--and at the same time. (Think of Jeroboam.)
Let's put a stop,
brethren, to the bickering and conflict over the calendar. Let's
stop the endless bleating and time-wasting. There's a work to be
done, and it needs the undivided attention of all.
Just my imagination
Though Pam Dewey
might not think so, some of what she said could, and I believe will,
cause some to not want to keep the holy days with her, even though
she and they both claim to use the rabbinical calculated calendar
[see "Why I Use the Standard Calendar to Determine Yearly Feast
Days," March 25].
Is it my imagination
or not: Do I recognize a theme that the WCG now uses to support
the idea that a day could be a Sabbath as long as we are together?
Most Protestants use the same reasoning. I predict more fracturing
of the Church of God s.
In Leviticus 18:22
and 20:13 God says it is an "abomination" for a man to
have sex with another man. Not only does God call homosexuality
an abomination to Him, but He told the children of Israel to kill
all those who engaged in it.
Almighty God destroyed
Sodom and Gomorrah for being cities of homosexuals and will do the
same to America if we continue to allow this abominable lifestyle
to flourish in this country.
The New Testament
condemns homosexuality as well. 2 Peter 2:6 says God condemned the
cities of Sodom and Gomorrah, making them an "example"
unto those who choose to live ungodly lives.
In Romans 1 Paul
explains how the homosexual lifestyle comes upon a nation and its
people. Verse 26 talks about lesbians, and verse 27 talks about
male homosexuality as being "vile affections." Verse 32
says those who commit such things "are worthy of death."
If a so-called
minister of God does not tell his followers the above scriptures
(for fear of the politically correct crowd) and refuses to condemn
the act of homosexuality from his pulpit, then that so-called minister
is nothing more than a fake and a fraud and should be avoided.
Some PC Christians
even go so far as to ordain perverts into the priesthoods of their
How about you?
Will you speak out for the Gods of heaven, or will you join sides
with the PC fake Christians who want to put everyone in jail for
violating America's new hate-crime laws?
The new hate-crime
laws of America would even have the Gods of heaven put in jail as
well, would they not?
causes and cures
At a recent Sabbath
service with the United Church of God in Orlando, I had the privilege
to watch a video presentation on homosexuality, its causes and cures,
conducted by Dr. Joseph Nicolosi.
Seeing the 13
church elders in attendance there was impressive.
God has commanded
us always to grow in His grace and knowledge (2 Peter 3:18), a principle
that was diligently upheld by the late Herbert W. Armstrong.
Yes, it was wise
to invite someone (Dr. Nicolosi) who has no affiliation with the
church but has the knowledge and capacity to instruct thoroughly
on the topic at hand. This is a remarkable step by the church to
deal with those entangled in the sin of homosexuality.
Belly up to
one of the Churches of God sponsored a young adults' activity; it
was open to all Churches of God. I attended this event and just
wanted to share some disturbing things that happened.
The seminars the
church sponsored were very good and educational. On a Saturday evening
all of us went to an apartment-complex clubhouse for dinner and
socializing that evening. It was really crowded, so crowded that
one could hardly walk around. It literally gave me a headache.
While there I
observed that the church had supplied beer for those who wanted
it. Now, there's really nothing wrong in doing that, I guess, but
I do believe it encourages an atmosphere that is conducive to other
All around me
young people held a can of beer in their hands, and I'd bet some
did that just to fit in with the cliques that seemed to be in evidence.
Members of one large group raised their beers in a toast and shouted,
"To the Kingdom!"
I had to question
whether God really appreciated being toasted with beer.
thing was how the girls were dressed. Almost all were dressed in
the Britney Spears fashion: skintight jeans and tops. The tops had
some plunging necklines and were designed to come up in the middle
so the navel and waistline would clearly show. One girl actually
had to pull up her neckline so her cleavage wouldn't fall out.
After the activity
that evening, some young adults went out to bars, some not returning
until 4 a.m. One minister's daughter invited others out to a bar.
Are bars really
a place for Christian young adults to go, not to mention the safety
I also found some
of the young people to be just crude; one man mentioned that a certain
girl had "a good-lookin' butt."
The next day's
(Sunday's) activities were held at a ranch and went much better.
I also observed that no beer was offered that day, and people seemed
to have just as much fun (or more) without the beer present.
So, if this is
a positive factor, why can't we do without the beer all the time?
I personally think there is a better way to spend a church's funds
than purchasing beer for young adults' activities. In my opinion,
if they want beer, let them go buy it for themselves individually.
really upset me, and I came home overall feeling disgusted and discouraged.
I didn't come away feeling uplifted or anything.
this letter so the general public can read it and think about these
things. Too often only the positive "Christian" image
is presented by a church and its activities. It's high time the
other side of the coin was seen.
Jesus cannot be a son
I thought you
did an excellent job of reporting what was said at the "One-God
conference" in Seattle in April ["One-God Seminars Near
Seattle Promote Strict Monotheism," The Journal, May 31].
But I fear that
I must not have made my presentation perfectly clear. You quoted
me as saying that, if Jesus had preexisted Mary's womb, then He
would have been a "son" in the way Adam was.
would not have been God's son in any real way, because He would
have already had His own identity. To be someone's son you must
have originated from them in some way. Adam came from the earth,
but God breathed the breath of life into him, so his life came from
his Creator. If Jesus preexisted, then He is not the son of anyone.
Also, Isaiah refers
to the Messiah becoming an everlasting Father. Jesus will marry
His bride and become a father, and He will last forever. He has
not existed as an individual in the eternal past, like the Eternal
Father (YHWH) has.
When you quoted
my reply to friends who feel "all things are possible,"
you thought I meant that "we must believe what the Bible says,
even if we don't understand it."
What I meant (and
maybe I didn't make it clear) was that "they said we must believe
what the Bible says, even when we don't understand."
I want people
to realize that our Bibles are filled with wrong translations. We
have to really dig in to uncover the great conspiracy of Satan the
deceiver. We do not have to accept what we do not understand.
Usually the reason
for wrong understanding is what men have done to our Bibles. To
put it in modern terms, a virus has infected the words of our Bibles,
and it is rooted so deep that it is possible to deceive even the
very elect, unless God intervenes.
I applaud you
and The Journal for a job well done. The subject of the conference
was so deep and so filled with information that I urge the readers
to send for the tapes. These are sincere speakers with a heart full
of empathy for all the Churches of God who only want to share what
their loving Father and His very own Son have opened their minds
If anyone would
like to discuss this further with me, then E-mail me at email@example.com
with brief questions or comments.
Also, I would
like to know of anyone who plans a Feast gathering (no matter how
small) in the Corpus Christi area.
We should be able
to answer for ourselves some basic questions regarding the nature
of Jesus Christ in the light of the Old and New Testaments, but
let us address them to our friends who presented their unitarian
beliefs in the May 31 issue of The Journal.
Top of the list
must be a simple question: Did Jesus Christ die for you individually?
Is He your individual Savior among the billions of people who have
ever lived or will ever yet have life?
If you believe
so, then by what means does His life as an individual pay for the
lives of all mankind?
question, and considering views expressed by the Unitarian Eight
(if we may use that appellation): Do the Unitarian Eight understand
that Jesus lived and died in Old Testament times?
Further, is it
as clear to them as it was to the apostles John (Revelation 13:8),
Peter (1 Peter 1:19-20) and Paul (2 Timothy 1:9) that the Lamb of
God was slain before the foundation of the world?
A third question:
How do members of the Unitarian Eight understand that Jesus is the
second Adam (1 Corinthians 15:12, 45-50), and how do they think
this relates to Isaiah's assertion that He shall be called "the
Everlasting Father" in that famous phrase repeated so often
in Handel's Messiah (Isaiah 9:6)?
Surely this must
be related to the question of the groom, the one who has the bride
according to John the Baptist (John 3:29). If John was the greatest
born of women (Matthew 11:11), then we must pay close attention
to what he said. How will the marriage of the Lamb occur; what will
be the result; how is it explained in unitarian terms?
up on that quintessential part of God's plan, described it in Ephesians
5 as a "great mystery." We've all heard men of wonderful
learning and linguistic ability stumble over that, haven't we? One
hopes that our friends (and erstwhile teachers) have not lost that
vision, yet it does not seem to me to fit in with the narrowly contrived
view presented in the One-God Seminars.
How do members
of the Unitarian Eight understand Hebrews?
us an understanding of atonement that is pretty well all embracing.
How can our unitarian friends equate their truncated Christ with
the Son of God presented here?
Put your unitarian
beliefs up against this incredible book, gentlemen, especially as
you trace the connections backward and forward through the Bible,
and I believe you will see how severely your exercises in semantics
have restricted your view of the living Christ. It was He who told
Moses and the Israel of old, "I am"! He is no less today.
Let us at once
agree that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and that in all things
He has subjected Himself to His Father's wishes and that there is
therefore but one almighty and supreme God, the Father.
But let us also
understand the simple principle "like Father, like Son."
They are the same kind, y'see, but there is more than one, as is
clear from Genesis 1:26 (the premise from which all else follows
in the Bible), and there will be more yet.
It seems to me
that our old friends who are venturing into unitarianism cannot
help but cut themselves off from the awesome truth of His Kingdom,
and I fervently hope they will not do that.
This was scribbled
some 30,000 feet above eastern Canada as I flew home, having read
the May 31 Journal article the previous day. Terra firma was somewhere
down there beneath the thick cloud, and I couldn't help but reflect
that we sometimes get lost in the clouds and need to get our feet
planted firmly on the Rock.
I read with great
interest The Journal's summary of Ken Westby's One-God Seminars
[May 31 issue].
there can be only one God being who is eternal and uncreated.
God is one in nature and purpose, that Jesus prayed we would be
one with God as He (Jesus) was one with God, that we cannot walk
together unless we are agreed.
in three representations (Father, Son and Holy Spirit) of God, which
are also one entity. This is viewed as a mystery difficult for the
human mind to comprehend.
As a binitarian,
I think the biblical verses seem to say Abraham was happy to see
Jesus' day; Jesus was the I Am at the burning bush; Jesus was the
Rock that went with Israel; Jesus was David's lord.
It seems Jesus
was with God in the beginning, that Jesus created everything.
Yet at the same
time I know I can't fit all the pieces of the Old Testament together.
I am curious as
to what the unitarians make of Genesis 1:26 ("Let Us make man
in Our image") and Jude 5 (Jesus "destroyed those [in
Egypt] who did not believe").
I do agree that
it is fine to look at and study the nature of God. I need to myself.
I believe everything
from the Word (Jesus) is a parable (including the Old Testament).
The Bible is not meant to be a clear-cut, obvious dissertation.
Many of the lawless stumble over its words.
this country we have religious freedom. We all need to study the
Scriptures diligently to see if these things are so.
Greg A. Jandrt
How God can
I just read The
Journal's story on the One-God Seminars [May 31 issue] and have
a few questions.
Jesus Christ the "only" begotten Son of God? If Christ
were simply created from conception, and then failed in His role
as Messiah, all God needed to do was simply create another messiah
and try again and again and again.
The concept of
"only begotten son" seems a bit lame if the Son were only
a created human being that God could do over and over again. Nothing
"only" about that, is there?
The concept seems
to cheapen the idea of grace and the real price paid for sin and
God have set Adam and Eve up to fail in the Garden of Eden if He
could have done with them what He did with Christ?
We are told in
God's Word that Christ had free will, could have sinned, had human
nature, etc., exactly as we are, right? Why then didn't God just
do the same thing He did with Christ to help Him succeed with Adam
and Eve (and any other human who has ever lived or will live) so
they wouldn't have sinned?
Why put mankind
through all the world of pain if He could have done it another way,
like He did with the supposedly created human being, Jesus Christ?
empty and shallow about the plan of God with a belief that a mere
created human could do what was done. If Christ succeeded with God's
help, why not all of us?
Can God die? A
God "being" can't die, but a being who was God in the
flesh--as flesh, with just the mind and character of God in a changed
form, without God's nature--can die.
The God "family,"
in toto, couldn't cease to exist because existence can't become
If two beings
existed, in nature, as God "kind," who is to say that
one of Them couldn't do what Christ did when the other one could
restore to Him what He voluntarily surrendered to the Father: His
nature as a God being?
less, to my mind, is to minimize God's handiwork and His depth of
I knew that the
one-God theme would be controversial ["One-God Seminars Near
Seattle Promote Strict Monotheism," May 31], but I'm glad you
aired it. It shows the enormous difficulty of doing postNew
The Trinity has
always been an incomprehensible doctrine, yet it is asserted with
so much dogmatism by the likes of Hank Hanegraaff and others. It's
the big litmus test of orthodoxy for most denominations, just as
is Sabbath-keeping for the Pod.
out those Journals. You're both making and recording history.
I have enjoyed
the recent series of articles in The Journal on the subject of divorce
and remarriage. Can I recommend a recent Eerdmans title that may
interest you? It is "D&R in the Bible" by David Instone-Brewer,
a Baptist minister and research fellow at Tyndale House, Cambridge,
If you do not
wish to purchase the book, its contents can be read at www.tyndale.cam.ac.uk/Brewer/PPages/DRB/contents.htm.
thanks for your extensive coverage of the One-God Seminars in Issue
the calls and books
I would love to
thank the people who called while I was in the veterans' hospital
in October two times with heart problems. Garner Ted Armstrong called
three times. Lois Chapman and my pastor, Phill Dunagan called. Others
called. It's a great feeling to know you have friends.
The Journal is
the only way to keep in touch with the whole Church of God.
© The Journal: News of the Churches of God