Dear Brethren and Co-Workers in Christ:
We trust you all had a spiritually profitable Pentecost weekend.
Pentecost went well in various areas from the reports we have received.
Of course, though God is calling some to be ‘firstfruits’ (cf. Revelation 14:4) in this age, He also has plans to reach others, both now and later.
Pentecost in the Kansas, Philippines, New Zealand, Ethiopia, Kenya, and Tanzania
Steve Dupuie told me that Pentecost weekend went well in Wichita, Kansas. I had asked him to go and personally give sermons to the congregation there.
Anthony Flavell sent the following photo from Pentecost services in the Philippines:
Pentecost attendees in Cagayan de Oro, Philippines
We also have another family in the Philippines (in another area) and we have been working with them to prepare for the Feast of Tabernacles in the Philippines this year.
We received the following report from New Zealand:
Pentecost was great here in Auckland. We had ten of us in attendance with wonderful messages and good food. Sharon and a couple of her friends got together for the Holy Day in Christchurch as well. …
My wife and I attended Pentecost services in New Zealand last year.
Over in Ethiopia, Koang Deng reported that 13 adults and 28 children attended the Feast of Pentecost.
From the Rift Valley of Kenya, Tomas Koskey reported that 33 attended the Feast of Pentecost.
We also received the following report from Kenya:
Pastor Dr Bob.
Greetings from Kenya.
We had a wonderful feast of Pentecost. Congregations from Ndhiwa, Mbani, Kiseke and Oriang gathered at Mbani. The feast was good. I have already received the report from Nyakach and Tanzania that they had a very successful feast. … Tomorrow I will go to meet Martin Wanga to give him funds for iron sheets and roofing timber, Nails for roofing and wall.
The materials are expected to be used for a facility that can be used for the Feast of Tabernacles as well as regular church services.
Reached over 5,000,000 Computers in May 2016
Google reported that our campaign with them reached 4,946,027 computers last month. When this is combined with what cogwriter.com and the CCOG websites have reached, this means over 5,000,000 computers received information about the truth in May of 2016.
All Nations and Tongues
When citing a passage from the Old Testament, the Apostle Paul taught:
“With men of other tongues and other lips I will speak to this people” (1 Corinthians 14:21a).
While most will not accept God’s message in this age (1 Corinthians 14:21b), reaching people is supposed to be done.
We have recently received one of our booklets translated into 50 of languages! This is a project we have been working on for several months. Here are the covers of the French editions of that booklet:
Because of cost and resource considerations, it will take a while, but we hope to produce two of our booklets in at least 50 languages each in 2016. This means that we will have to format them, put together covers, make them available online, and actually print small quantities of each. While we have CCOG supporters translating our materials into French, Spanish, and German, these 50 languages are by non-COG members.
Now, not all of our translation are as precise as we prefer. Even among native speaker in CCOG, there are differences of opinions about how certain words in the Spanish language, for example, should be translated.
But even having some language difficulties seems to have been prophesied:
9 “Whom will he teach knowledge? And whom will he make to understand the message? Those just weaned from milk? Those just drawn from the breasts? 10 For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept, Line upon line, line upon line, Here a little, there a little.”
11 For with stammering lips and another tongue He will speak to this people, 12 To whom He said, “This is the rest with which You may cause the weary to rest,” And, “This is the refreshing”; Yet they would not hear. (Isaiah 28:9-12)
We are to reach people in multiple languages, despite the fact that most will not respond in this age. And that there may be troubles caused by translations.
Yet, Jesus taught:
14 And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come. (Matthew 24:14)
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)
This means we need to reach people around the world–many of whom will not grasp the importance of the truth (cf. 1 Corinthians 14:21b). Since the overwhelming majority of people do NOT understand the English language, we try to reach people in whatever languages we can and go through the doors Jesus opens for us (cf. Revelation 3:7-8).
The addition of all these languages also means that we will make a variety of changes to our websites. We expect to announce some of those as they happen.
Noah and the Short Work
God warned Noah of the great flood and told him to prepare (Genesis 6:13-21) and Noah did (Genesis 6:22). It took much time as he acquired materials, made plans, and constructed the Ark. But the rain itself only lasted 40 days (Genesis 7:4,12). The total time he and his family were in the Ark was just under 11 months (cf. Genesis 7:11; 8:13). But if Noah and his family had not prepared for the short work of surviving the flood, humanity would have died (unless God devised another way).
For thousands of years, God has been waiting for the world to get the witness of the gospel of the kingdom. It will happen, and then the end will come.
What does God’s word teach about who will reach many? Who will instruct many?
The most faithful.
Recall what the Bible teaches:
32… the people who know their God shall be strong, and carry out great exploits. 33 And those of the people who understand shall instruct many; (Daniel 11:32-33)
This is part of why you need Bible study, you need to learn from sermons and sermonettes, you need to know more about doctrine, prophecy, and church history, and why you should try to attend the Feast of Tabernacles. We in the Continuing Church of God are leading what I have termed the final phase of the work–and the most faithful need to have their part in supporting it.
We Christians are to reach people around the world. This involves being about to reach people in multiple languages.
The Bible shows that this ultimately results in followers from all over and in all languages:
9 After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could number, of all nations, tribes, peoples, and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, with palm branches in their hands, 10 and crying out with a loud voice, saying, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!” (Revelation 7:9-11)
14 Then to Him was given dominion and glory and a kingdom, That all peoples, nations, and languages should serve Him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion, Which shall not pass away, And His kingdom the one Which shall not be destroyed. (Daniel 7:14).
Thus, it makes sense to get materials into whatever languages God will open up to us (cf. Revelation 3:7-8; 1 Corinthians 16:9; 2 Corinthians 2:12).
Unlike collecting physical materials like Noah did, translators and editors are helping us prepare for the short work.
We are preparing for the coming ‘short work’ (Romans 9:28; see also Preparing for the ‘Short Work’ and The Famine of the Word) and having more items in more languages is part of our preparation.
World News Items
The Islamic State lost about 400 of its soldiers, and then launched a terrorist attack in Damascus, Syria (see Suicide bombing in Damascus after Islamic State loses 400). A few days later, the USA had its worst shooting incident when an Islam terrorist (supposedly linked to the Islamic State) attacked a nightclub in Orlando, Florida (see Muslim terrorist kills around 50 at homosexual night club in Orlando, Florida). As I have repeatedly warned, expect more terrorism in the USA. Expect more terrorism in Europe. Expect more terrorism as the Bible predicts it (see also Why Terrorism? Is Terrorism Prophesied?).
The Obama Administration wants to relinquish US control over more aspects of the internet, but not all in the USA want this to happen (see Obama Administration wants USA to lose internet control: A prelude for 666?). Steps taken in the USA and in Europe are leading to the time when the final Beast power will have more control of the internet, but as the more influential politicians do not really believe Bible prophecy, steps for its fulfillment will often continue with political assistance.
Over in Europe, the Bilderberg conference took place from June 9-12, 2016 (see Bilderberg Conference 2016: One world government is consistent with its agenda). This week’s recommended sermonette (Can the Bilderberg Group Affect 2017 and Beyond?) is related to some of the implications of that.
On Monday, June 13, 2016, European Council President Donald Tusk said that if the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union that could lead to the end of Western civilization (see Donald Tusk: Brexit could destroy Western political civilisation). Actually, a unified Europe will lead to the end of the current Western political civilization according to biblical prophecy (Revelation 17:12-13). And what will end up in Europe will ultimately have to be destroyed by Jesus and replaced (cf. Revelation 17:14).
Suggested Sabbath Service
Here is a suggested Sabbath service for this week:
- 2-3 hymns (our songbook, The Bible Hymnal, contains the materials from the 1974Bible 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: Can the Bilderberg Group Affect 2017 and Beyond? Other sermonettes are available at theBible 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: The 18 Restored Truths: 1-8. 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 (as my home one is) 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 new 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.
The Apostle Paul wrote:
7 Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. 8 For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life. 9 And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart. (Galatians 6:7-9)
Brethren, we are sowing spiritual seeds with our literature and campaigns. Thank you for your support and prayers.
Pastor and Overseer