In what way do your booklets, sermons, sermonettes and updates (especially articles and comments in your Current Events sections) relate to the Church’s end-time commission to preach the gospel of the Kingdom of God as a witness and to feed the flock?
We state in our Statement of Beliefs, under “The Church’s Commission”:
“We believe that it is the Church’s commission to preach the gospel of the Kingdom of God to all nations as a witness, to warn all nations, and especially the lost tribes of the house of Israel (mainly in the United States, Great Britain, certain Commonwealth nations and nations in Northwestern Europe) of impending danger, and to feed the flock of Christ—the Church—spiritually and physically.”
Regarding the gospel of the Kingdom of God, we state this in our free booklet, “How to Find the True Church of God”:
“… the gospel includes, among other aspects, a message ABOUT Jesus Christ (Luke 24:44–46); about the grace of God (Acts 20:24); repentance and forgiveness of sins (Luke 24:47); the belief in and obedience to the gospel (Mark 1:15; Romans 10:16; 2 Thessalonians 1:8); our salvation (Ephesians 1:13); peace (Ephesians 6:15); the promise of eternal life (2 Timothy 1:10); rulership of Christ and the saints here on earth (Revelation 20:4, 6; Daniel 2:44; 7:21–22, 27); and a message about the Kingdom of God (Luke 9:11)…
“We read that it is the gospel OF Jesus Christ (Romans 1:16; 1 Corinthians 9:12), or Christ’s gospel (2 Corinthians 2:12). It is a message that God the Father gave to Jesus Christ, the ‘Messenger’ (Malachi 3:1) in order to proclaim it (compare also Revelation 1:1). But the gospel message was also Christ’s message, because it is called the gospel OF the Kingdom of God, and Christ is a member of the Kingdom of God.”
So, the gospel is a message which is given to us from God the Father and Jesus Christ to proclaim to this world as a witness or testimony, prior to Christ’s return (Matthew 24:14). Even though it is good news, it includes, by necessity, a warning message to show what is going to happen when God is being disobeyed (Isaiah 24:4-6).
When reviewing our published material in light of the foregoing, we should see how it all relates to God’s commission to His Church (to preach the gospel, as explained above, and to feed the flock) which is called upon to proclaim the “whole counsel of God” (Acts 20:25-27).
For instance, our booklets deal with God’s Word, the Bible, and His Law and the penalties when it is broken. We have just published a new comprehensive booklet of over 170 pages, titled “The Ten Commandments,” which discusses God’s spiritual Law in a unique way. You will not find anything quite like it anywhere else, and we encourage you to request your free copy.
Our booklets also talk about prophetic events leading to Christ’s near return; who and what God is; His weekly and annual Holy Days; pagan holidays; Christian living; the future of the Jewish people; and the identity of the modern house of Israel as well as modern Gentile nations which are specifically addressed in the Bible, including the rise of a prophesied European power bloc and the downfall of the United States and the United Kingdom.
The foregoing applies likewise to our sermons and sermonettes which deal to a large extent with feeding the flock, but also with the task of preaching the gospel, as explained above.
The motto of our weekly StandingWatch programs is: “Proclaiming the warnings of prophecy for our times and announcing the good news of the coming Kingdom of God.” They also address the right and wrong kind of living, as this is part of the gospel message as well. As ambassadors for Christ, we are to show the world how to live, for this will be the Way of Life when Christ will set up the Kingdom or Government of God on this earth within a few years from now.
Focusing on our weekly Updates, they include an editorial and a Q&A by one of our ministers, addressing diverse matters in light of biblical injunctions. They also include a “Current Events” section which publish many news articles from around the world, and oftentimes, we add our own comments to these articles. At the end of each Current Events section, we state the following:
“The publication of articles in this section is not to be viewed as an endorsement or approval as to contents or accuracy of the selected articles, but they are published for the purpose of pointing at worldwide developments in the light of biblical end-time prophecy and godly instruction. Our own comments are provided in italics.”
It is therefore incumbent upon the reader to view our material, including the Current Events section, in the light of the Church’s commission, as explained herein. Much thought goes into what to publish, and it never occurs “just to fill the pages.” In most cases, the relevance is obvious at first glance, but sometimes, more individual analysis might be required as to why a particular article was published and why a specific comment was made.
In all of this, we must understand that the Church is not engaged in politics. We do not endorse any political candidate or party, and we do not vote in governmental elections. We do not, of course, participate in war, either. But this does not mean that we would not comment on wrong behavior and propaganda of politicians and social and religious leaders. In that light, we will publish articles with viewpoints different from the “official” versions of the mass media, as long as those viewpoints appear relevant and seem to have merit, and it behooves the reader to evaluate those opposing views in the light of biblical values.
We also comment on social injustice, which is contrary to God’s Word. In fact, we must do so, to show the contrast between God’s Way of Life and the ways of this evil world ruled by Satan the Devil.
To emphasize this point even more, we should look at the warning messages contained in the books of the major and minor prophets, and realize how strongly they uttered their warnings by crying aloud, sparing not and showing God’s people their sins (Isaiah 58:1). In many cases, evil rulers and their bad conduct were the targets of their warnings, and they did not shy away from doing so. At the same time, the prophets of old castigated the people as well for following the ungodly conduct of their rulers. John the Baptist was not afraid to point out publicly the sexual sin of King Herod, because it had become a public affair.
The concept of submitting to human governments and their political propaganda must be seen in context. We have just completed a new booklet, which we have posted on our website, titled, “Obeying God rather than Men.” Printed copies should be available very soon. In this booklet, we point out that we must never obey man, when we would thereby violate God’s Law, in letter or in spirit. This also means that we cannot adopt and endorse man’s concepts and ideas when they are in opposition to God’s directives.
For instance, as we point out in our booklet, we are obligated to pay our taxes, but this does not mean that we should not address the improper use of those taxes for ungodly purposes. When confronted with illegal actions from the government, we have every right as Christians to point these out and to object to those through legal means.
While God’s people will never engage in violent rebellion or violent demonstrations against the government, we will not shrink back from pointing out ungodly conduct which causes the ruin of the nation. God has made it very clear that any nation will be cursed if it engages in actions that violate God’s laws, and many kinds of curses are enumerated in many places in the Bible. They include defeat in war, incurable sicknesses, famine, and much more.
The prophets of old also strongly condemned social injustice in the land, in just about every aspect of life. They addressed the mistreatment of foreigners, orphans and widows as much as sexual perversion and alcohol abuse. And of course, they condemned the leaders and the people for being engaged in horrible pagan worship practices. Can we see how all of this relates to our present time, and how this kind of ancient warning message for the same kind of violations, as we observe them today, must be proclaimed with boldness and conviction in this day and age?
This is even more pertinent, as the Bible warns of political, social and religious deception and a falling away from the Truth. This falling away can be easily caused or at least influenced by the wrong acceptance of political and religious propaganda, no matter in what country one might be living, including war mongering or the right to use guns against others. It can be caused by upholding positions that are contrary to the Bible, but which are being upheld due to one’s background, upbringing or personal preferences.
It is therefore the Church’s responsibility to continue to point out God’s viewpoint, as revealed in the Bible, on all of these matters. It is part of the Church’s commission to educate the members in order to prevent false concepts from being absorbed and retained, leading them to turn away from the Truth.
God commands us to come out of today’s Babylonian system of confusion—to leave every erroneous concept behind and to embrace instead the Truth in every aspect of life. God’s Word tells us what the Truth is, and our Current Events show, week after week, the false concepts of this world and of its representatives, which are contrasted by the right concepts of God the Father and Jesus Christ, as being upheld by God’s true Church.
God offers us protection at a place of safety during the terrible days of the soon-coming Great Tribulation, and He will give us eternal life if we are counted worthy to be in the first resurrection. It is the Church’s duty to prepare the membership for these dark times ahead, so that we can all enjoy together our glorious future in the Kingdom of God.
Lead Writer: Norbert Link