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230 show up for Day of Pentecost services with CGI Jamaica
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230 show up for Day of Pentecost services with CGI Jamaica

KINGSTON, Jamaica--The Church of God International here broke another attendance record when 230 people showed up for Pentecost services Sunday, May 19, the highest number of people ever to attend any CGI meeting in the country.

The previous day, the weekly Sabbath, Pastor Ian Boyne of Kingston delivered "The Elect of God," to show that Church of God members are predestined to be a part of the godly firstfruits and that "we are not just another church calling upon Jesus Christ."

Rather, he said, "we are a specially selected, divinely called-out group."

Mr. Boyne contrasted 16th-century French theologian John Calvin's teaching that some people are predestined for eternal damnation with the biblical teaching that all will eventually be called.

Calvin, said Mr. Boyne, "blasphemed the character of God" with his "reprobate and reprehensible teaching" of radical predestination, but he did understand a part of Scripture that Martin Luther and other Protestant reformers did not see: "that the Scriptures do clearly speak about a special calling and election."

The trouble with Calvin

"The problem with Calvin was that, unlike Herbert Armstrong, he was not called and guided by God," said Mr. Boyne, "and he did not have the Holy Spirit to put the different elements of Scripture together, those elements which spoke of special election and those which talk about Christ's coming to save the entire world."

Those who don't understand the meaning of the yearly feast days are at a disadvantage when trying to comprehend "universal atonement" and "special election," said Mr. Boyne.

Both concepts, he told the brethren at the Pentecost meeting, were "divinely revealed to Mr. Armstrong," founder of the Worldwide Church of God, from which the CGI and many other Church of God groups have descended.

Mr. Boyne preached on the mercy and grace of God and that the Holy Spirit works with people in spite of their weaknesses.

The Holy Spirit is the "encourager," he said. "Its power is not just in the spectacular and the dramatic but also in its help to us in our valleys, troughs and ditches in life."

God's valid law

Also speaking on the annual feast day was CGI deacon George Ramocan, who talked of the abiding validity of God's law, showing that it does not contradict the Spirit.

Services included lively singing.

"Everyone left inspired and encouraged," said Mr. Boyne.

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