Letter to the Brethren: November 7, 2019

Dear Brethren and Co-Workers in Christ:

Greetings from the Five Cities region of California.

This week’s sermonette and sermon are different lengths than usual.

In the old Worldwide Church of God, they would sometimes have what they called a split sermon, with each man speaking 40-50 minutes. Since I wanted more time that usual for the sermonette, I thought I would make the sermon shorter (I covered chapters 4-6 of Ecclesiastes, and since I had a lot of materials for chapter 7, it seemed to make sense to stop after chapter 6, otherwise it would have been long).

Anyway,  the sermonette topic was not really enough for a sermon, plus I wanted the historical references to be shown and decided having it produced like our normal sermonettes would be better should people outside the Church of God watch it.

Feast of Tabernacles Photo Album

Before the Feast of Tabernacles, Steve Dupuie sent the following announcement:

Greetings Noble Brethren –
I would like to put together a slide show for all to enjoy covering our upcoming Feast of Tabernacles.
I want to extend an invitation to all our brethren all across the globe to contribute to the success of the slide show.  Just take pictures of whatever your heart desires.
I think it was two years ago that Evangelist Ochieng sent several videos, one of which featured Rose singing a solo.  This video brought tears to the eyes of at least one of us in the USA.  The point is this: in addition to still photos, you can include videos of singing, special music, sermons, special events, etc.  I can include small portions of the videos into the slide show.  It seems to be a real hit.  By the way.  It doesn’t matter what your native tongue is.  It all seems to be spoken in the language of love, so we can all understand.
I would like all the brethren around the world in India, Africa, Europe, North America, Haiti, and the South Pacific to know that this invitation includes you!  The rest of us around the world are very excited to meet you.
Email your photos to: steve.dupuie@yahoo.com.  The names and event of the photo is vital.  Here is how the camera names a photo – Xm43dji883.jpg.  Here is how Shirley renames the photo – Charissa, Julie & Fai at the Aviation Museum, Tauranga, NZ.jpg.  I really like the way Shirley names a photo.  This is accomplished by right clicking on the photo and then clicking “Rename”.
Either way – take photos and send them to me – Please.
If you have videos they will have to be sent by a different computer method.  Let me know if you have videos and we’ll work it out.  Just take the videos.
Happy Feast!
Steve –

While he has received photographs from many of the festival sites for 2019, he does not seem to have photographs from all of them. I spoke to him about this project last week, and he is hoping to get it out this month or next at the latest.

So, even if you were at a video site or some other site that we have not seen photos from, consider sending him photographs. His email address is steve.dupuie@yahoo.com

Rift Valley Reports

Pastor Tiongik Sawek sent the following report:

REPORT FROM SOUTH RIFT ON 1ST NOVEMBER 2019

I greet you in the name of Jesus Christ who is our savior and that we expecting him to return and rule with the saints. The Brethren are doing well and that the word of the Lord is going on well here. We are now in a long holiday of two months given that the schools have been closed and that there are many youths now at home. We were therefore kindly requesting for the support of the youth meeting in the group of Chilani

Ever since you started supporting the youth meeting, the youths have started to have a thorough understanding on the Biblical doctrines and that they have grown spiritually as the scripture is saying teach the child when still young. The youths have gone astray following the ways of these world but it is only the church where one can find youths who are still obedient(Proverbs 22:6, Titus 3:1).

Another thing is that for the past one year the women of Chilani have form a group known as “the light of Christ (Messiah)” and that they have made some collections with the aim of assisting the widows, Orphans and other needy people. However, the group is facing financial constraints and that they had asked me to tell Evangelist Ochieng so this group may get assistance so that they may discharge their duties effectively.

Recently this group has visited a 98 year old woman who had received God’s ministers in the late 1970s. Her husband has died long time ago, the church assisted her with beddings, milk and other necessities. We will send you photos and the children you will see are her great grandchildren. This event has changed the soul of the villagers. We were to assemble at Kapolecho Local Church tomorrow but due to the heavy rain we are experiencing it will not be place due to the fact that the church has not been constructed. But there is a plot for construction. Evangelist Ochieng has agreed that the church will be supported in the near future. We shall not forget to thank the Continuing Church of God ever since we joined each other with Evangelist Ochieng. The brethren of Bomet have also invited me to go and teach them the doctrines of the church for there are new Brethren who have joined the church.

We are thankful because they are now able to shelter from rain and sunshine. Let’s continue praying for each other.

Regards

Pastor Sawek

The photo above shows the type of bedding/mattresses we have provided to parts of Africa when we have been able to do so.

Furthermore, today, Pastor Sawek sent in the following report:

Receive greetings in the name of  Jesus Christ . We are going on well here at South Rift, Kenya. I am travelling to Bomet from tomorrow a place called Kiromwok (a place we had assisted them with Iron sheets with Evangelist Ochieng the other time). There are some Brethrens who the joined the brotherhood and i will be with them until sabbath. Later, i will go to a place called Chebirbelek to meet with Our brothers and sisters who have called me. Then I will proceed to Bureti not far from Kericho. In all those places, i have been Called by them. Need your prayers so that I complete the journey well. I have informed Evengelist Ochieng about my journey. God bless you .

 Regards
Pastor Sawek

We are pleased that there is more interest as we strive towards the objectives of Matthew 24:14, Matthew 28:19-20, and Romans 11:25.

World News Items

US President Trump is under a more official impeachment inquiry than the behind the scenes one that had been going on (see Trump inquisition changing with House impeachment rule vote). This has been the most partisan impeachment investigation we have seen in the USA in my lifetime. The USA is getting more and more divided–this will not end well (cf. Matthew 12:25).

Last Friday, the Vatican announced yet another holiday for its version of Mary (see Pope Francis authorizes yet another Marian holiday: A Black Madonna connection to his interfaith environmental agenda?). Pope Francis authorized another new Marian holiday last year. It is likely that some of the signs and lying wonders prophesied by the Apostle Paul (2 Thessalonians 2:9-10 will be associated with ‘Mary.’

In India, a million gas masks were given out because of air pollution there (see Air pollution causes India to give out millions of gas masks; Heads of India and Germany sign trade agreements). On Monday, the USA officially informed the United Nations that it is pulling out of the climate accords agreed to in Paris by then US President Obama–the Europeans are not pleased with this (see AP: EU hopes US will rethink choice to pull out of climate pact).

The Europeans, as well as some in Asia, are also displeased with aspects of US trade policy and are hoping to work with China to essentially bypass the US (see Asean leaders move farther from US, as EU is also looking towards China). One day, relatively soon, more of the world will look towards Europe as the dominator of world trade instead of the US (cf. Revelation 17-18).

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 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: Infant Baptism Scripture and History. 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: Ecclesiastes 4-6: Christian Living Makes a Difference. 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 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 ContinuingCOG channel AND MANY SERMONETTE MESSAGES ON THE Bible News Prophecy channel. There are also some messages at the CCOGAfrica channel.

Concluding Comments

The Apostle John recorded the following:

34 Jesus said to them, “My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me, and to finish His work. 35 Do you not say, ‘There are still four months and then comes the harvest’? Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look at the fields, for they are already white for harvest! 36 And he who reaps receives wages, and gathers fruit for eternal life, that both he who sows and he who reaps may rejoice together. 37 For in this the saying is true: ‘One sows and another reaps.’ 38 I sent you to reap that for which you have not labored; others have labored, and you have entered into their labors.” (John 4:33-38)

Brethren, we are not to make excuses about supporting the work. While, yes, there is time, we are not to waste time. Thank you for your prayerful support of doing the work and assisting in the harvest.

Sincerely,

Bob Thiel
Pastor and Overseer