Letter to the Brethren: February 28, 2019

Dear Brethren and Co-Workers in Christ:

Greetings again from the Five Cities region of California.

Much is going on in various parts of the world.

Baptisms: Malawi and Mozambique

On Tuesday, evangelist Evans Ochieng sent the following report:

Pastor Dr Bob,

Today is a wonderful day in Malawi to bring many people in God’s family.

The baptism of today was wonderful because we had true needy people who are obedient and full of faith. I baptized 29 people in Malawi. They were 31 people but two failed to come because of sickness problem but the 29 came. … The service was good.

Evans

Of the 29 baptized, 5 were from Mozambique and 24 from Malawi.

Jesus taught:

19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age. (Matthew 28:19-20)

And that is what we in the Continuing Church of God are doing.

People were critical of the people that Jesus reached.

Notice the following:

1 Then all the tax collectors and the sinners drew near to Him to hear Him. 2 And the Pharisees and scribes complained, saying, “This Man receives sinners and eats with them.”
3 So He spoke this parable to them, saying:

4 “What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he loses one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness, and go after the one which is lost until he finds it? 5And when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing. 6 And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep which was lost!’ 7 I say to you that likewise there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine just persons who need no repentance. 8 “Or what woman, having ten silver coins, if she loses one coin, does not light a lamp, sweep the house, and search carefully until she finds it? 9 And when she has found it, she calls her friends and neighbors together, saying, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found the piece which I lost!’

Likewise, I say to you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.” (Luke 15:1-10).

We should all rejoice when so many have come to repentance.

Haiti

From Canada, Herb Haddon sent in a couple of reports related to Haiti. Here is one from last Sabbath:

Dr. Thiel:

I have just been conversing with Moise, asking how things were today.

He said there were 91 in attendance for Sabbath Services.   …
Of the 91, 5 are from {another COG} about 5 are baptized, and 5 new people he had not met before. (invited by others, I guess)  He sent some pictures.

For the sermon he played your Eccl 1-3 sermon with a video projector and stopped periodically to translate for everyone.
He would like material to share about baptism as there are several interested in baptism counselling.  …

Moise concludes with:

they all impressed you in your intervention, for Haiti, I explained to him all. and explain your plan for brethren. He said where was CCOG was before.

Guess the pressure is on!!

Herb

Last Sabbath was essentially a one time event in Haiti as we do not have a regular meeting place there, nor the funds to pay each week for where they had the service (which had been planned to coincide with the arrival of the Haddons, who were unable to get there because of the protests and turmoil in the country when they arrived that prevented them from meeting with the brethren and forced them to return to Canada).

Here is another report related to Haiti:

Dr. Thiel

Just got off the phone with Air Canada.

They are processing a refund for the extra return tickets Gisele and I have.<

Air Canada has suspended all fights to Haiti until mid May. This may possibly change, depending on circumstances in Haiti.

I will talk to Moise, as our ‘feet on the ground’ to see what he is hearing about the current situation.

Will keep you informed.

Herb

Herb Haddon and I had hoped that he and his wife Gisele would be able to return in April. Please pray about that, if it is God’s will.

Feast of Tabernacles in Canada

Herb Haddon informed me that he signed a contract for the 2019 Feast of Tabernacles site in Canada.

Here is the location.

Ramada Plaza Hotel
6445, Boul. Décarie
Montreal (Quebec) Canada
H3W 3E1
(514) 739-3800

The Feast of Tabernacles will begin at sunset October 13th and run through sunset, the Last Great Day, October 21st.

My family and I intend to spend the first half at the site in St. Louis, which is at the The Westin St. Louis 811 Spruce Street, St. Louis, Missouri 63102 USA +1 314-621-2000. And the second half at the site in Canada.

If you are planning on attending this year in St. Louis (and you do not have to stay at the Westin, although with the discount being offered many will), please send me an email. My email address is COGwriter@aol.com

If you are planning on attending this year in Montreal (and you do not have to stay at the Ramada), please send Herb Haddon an email. His email address is HWHaddon@gmail.com

As mentioned last week, expect to have three sites on the continent of North America: St. Louis, Montreal, and possibly eastern Mexico.

For information on the Montreal site and the other expected festival sites for 2019, you can also check out the page: Continuing Church of God Feast of Tabernacles’ sites for 2019.

NTBO Animation

Yesterday, we finished our latest animation: Night to Be Observed.

Here is what we wrote about it on YouTube:

What is it? When is it? The KJV refers to it as “THE NIGHT TO BE MUCH OBSERVED.” This scripture-packed animation includes background and specific information related to the children of Israel. It also gives some of the Old and New Testament prophetic ramifications of this event. How the NTBO is typically observed is also covered. The animation also includes a chart of scriptures and biblical dates to determine when that NTBO actually is. Furthermore, the animation provides information from the “Jewish Encyclopedia” which, through scripture, shows that many Jews have confused Passover with the “night to be observed.” This is a great animation to give background on the NTBO and is also appropriate to be watched on the NTBO.

For 2019, the Night to Be Observed begins at sunset April 19th.

Some may wish to watch this animation then. Some may also wish to watch it before then.

I would like to thank all those who volunteered and provided voices to the animation.

Radio

On the radio last Thursday, the host and I discussed some prophetic matters as well as our Proof Jesus is the Messiah book. However, the host went off into opinions and topics I did not agree with and was not given enough time to properly challenge on the air. While I may do that show again, when it was over I told the host off-the-air that I was not intending to be on again for a while and that changes need to happen.

World News Items

The whole concept of female sports is getting disrupted by people born male claiming they are female, who then compete against people born female. In various sporting events, females frequently lose to these people (see Transgender: The destruction of female sports?). This whole thing is absurd, but that is the direction much of the world is moving towards.

The European Union and Arab League held a conference. Some of the policies of US President Trump are driving them together on certain matters (see ‘EU, Arab League forge connections at first desert summit’). The Bible shows that the Europeans and Arabs will be involved in deals (Daniel 9:27 and Psalm 83:2-8) that will not end well for the USA (Daniel 11:39) nor the Arab world (Daniel 11:40).

The politics of Brexit remain unsettled (see ‘The Brexit Apocalypse’ and Germany’s military planand Brexit delayed, Brexit denied?) and this has caused a lot of anxiety in the UK, Ireland, and many parts of Europe. No matter what happens with Brexit, the reality is that Europe will one day takeover the UK (cf. Daniel 8:24-25; see also Anglo – America in Prophecy & the Lost Tribes of Israel).

Suggested Sabbath Service

Here is a suggested Sabbath service for this week for our scattered brethren:

  • 2-3 hymns (our songbook, The Bible Hymnal, contains the materials from the 1974 Bible Hymnal from the old WCG with new covers, plus ten additional hymns; there is also some Choral Accompaniment online).
  • Opening prayer.
  • Sermonette, which for most who receive this letter via email will be a recorded one. The one suggested for this week is: American Infanticide. Other sermonettes are available at the Bible News Prophecy channel.
  • Announcements (if any; though for many it will be this letter) and one hymn.
  • Sermon, which for most who receive this letter via email will be a recorded one. The one suggested for this week is: Music, Hillsong, and the False Gospel. Other sermons are also available at the ContinuingCOG channel. Other sermons are also available at the ContinuingCOG channel.
  • Final hymn.
  • Closing prayer.

Note: If you have a slow internet connection, you can watch these by starting the video, then below it (and towards the right) look for an outline of a gear–if you click on that, it will allow the YouTube video to be played with lower video quality, but at least it will not stop often–you can select a quality as low as 144p. If your internet connection is still too slow and/or you prefer audio messages to audio-visuals ones, go to the YouTube link for the message, click on SHOW MORE related to the description. You will then see something that says, “Download MP3.” Below that is a link to an MP3 file. Most computers (and even some cellular telephones) will allow MP3 files to be downloaded and played. This is an option we have made available (but we are also looking into ways to improve that as well)–and, of course, we have written article options. Some people have found that if their internet connections are not fast enough, that they can simply listen to the messages that are found at the Bible News Prophecy online radio channel.

IN CASE YOU DO NOT RECEIVE A ‘LETTER TO THE BRETHREN’ FOR ANY WEEK, REMEMBER THAT THERE ARE MANY SERMON MESSAGES ON THE ContinuingCOGchannel AND MANY SERMONETTE MESSAGES ON THE Bible News Prophecy channel. There are also some messages at the CCOGAfrica channel.

Concluding Comments

The Bible teaches:

17 ‘This decision is by the decree of the watchers,
And the sentence by the word of the holy ones,
In order that the living may know
That the Most High rules in the kingdom of men,
Gives it to whomever He will,
And sets over it the lowest of men.’ (Daniel 4:17)

It also teaches:

12 As for My people … Those who lead you cause you to err, And destroy the way of your paths. (Isaiah 3:12)

16 For the leaders of this people cause them to err, And those who are led by them are destroyed. (Isaiah 9:16)

Brethren, the 2020 presidential cycle in the US has begun, Brexit is scheduled for the end of next month, and the situation in Venezuela and in many other nations is tense.

Be careful to not be too caught up in the politics of it all.

Do not put your faith in any political figure of this world.

“Seek first the Kingdom of God” (Matthew 6:33).

Sincerely,

Bob Thiel
Pastor and Overseer