What IS Our Position?

We are sometimes asked why we are publishing certain articles about corona measures in our Current Events section, which do not necessarily reflect the viewpoint expressed by the mass media. The suggestion is made that we might be political, anti-vaxxers, corona deniers, etc. Others feel that we do not oppose governmental measures strongly enough, and that we should tell our membership and the entire world that we must resist and that we must not get vaccinated or wear masks under any circumstances. At times, the mandate to get vaccinated or wear masks is associated with the mark of the beast.

I’d like to use this Editorial to make the Church’s position on these matters very clear. I refrain from discussing here what my own preference is or would be, as this is irrelevant in the context of this Editorial.

We said this in a recent Q&A about the mark of the beast:

“Wearing or not wearing a mask, or getting or not getting vaccinated is not, per se, tantamount to accepting the mark of the beast, as long as they do not prevent us from worshipping God in the right way (However, wearing a mask in church services might very well prevent us from worshipping God in a proper way). Otherwise, these are personal decisions, based on one’s individual situation. If a minister ought to travel overseas to visit the church or baptize or preach the gospel, but could only do so if he is vaccinated first, then vaccination does not prevent him from worshipping God and fulfilling his job as a minister; in fact, it might enable him to do so. If air travel in such a case would require the wearing of a mask [or to be fully vaccinated], and if there was no other way to travel, then doing so would not constitute accepting the mark of the beast. This does not mean however that he must travel under those circumstances, because additional considerations, personal and otherwise, might have to be taken into account.

“These principles… do not just apply to ministers. If one has to wear a mask or has to be vaccinated to be able to keep his or her job or to go shopping, then a decision to do so would not constitute the acceptance of the mark of the beast, as it has nothing to do with worshipping or not worshipping God in the right way.

“In this Q&A, we are primarily addressing the concept of the mark of the beast, and what it does and does not constitute. We are not speaking, in general, about the advisability or inadvisability of wearing a mask or becoming vaccinated. In particular, we are not addressing here whether or not vaccinations are safe; whether or not they will cause short-term or long-term (genetic) side effects; whether or not it is advisable to become vaccinated because of one’s health or age; or whether or not vaccinations are morally and ethically questionable because they were originally developed from cells of aborted fetuses…

“A decision to get vaccinated or not is an individual decision, but it must be based on one’s individual conscience and conviction, because whatever is not of faith is sin (Romans 14:23). We must be persuaded or fully convinced in our own mind (Romans 14:5). It is important, however, that our conviction is based on a sound mind and not on speculation, unproven narratives or political propaganda. (For instance, a concept that wearing a mask is our patriotic duty or responsibility is as wrong as the idea that wearing a mask is sinful and constitutes acceptance of the mark of the beast.)

“However, God commands us to work, earn money and support our family, and we should consider in this context whether or not a commanded activity, enabling us to do so, is ‘neutral’ in that it does not violate God’s command to worship Him properly. Health concerns should be taken into consideration as well, when it comes, for instance, to wearing masks or getting vaccinated, such as difficulties with breathing, allergies, a compromised immune system, reactions to vaccinations, etc. But health concerns must not become our main priority if this means neglecting other and perhaps even more demanding duties. We read, for example, that Epaphroditus became sick because he worked so hard in the Work of God (Philippians 2:25-30). Paul said: ‘For if we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. Therefore, whether we live or die, we are the Lord’s’ (Romans 14:8).

“It is true, of course, that we are not to put God to the test. On the other hand, we must also recognize that time and chance do not rule over a Christian, but that he is in God’s hands. It is therefore important that we always pray to God for His lead, guidance, inspiration and protection (Psalm 48:14; Proverbs 16:9; Jeremiah 10:23 and Isaiah 58:11), and that we do not judge or condemn anyone who might decide in a way other than what our preference would be, because our situation might be quite different from the situation of our next-door neighbor, relative or friend.

“Whatever our individual decision will be, especially when it comes to getting or not getting vaccinated, God’s Church will back us up, honoring our individual conviction, based on our circumstances. Wearing a mask or getting vaccinated is not tantamount to accepting the mark of the beast, nor do they constitute sinful conduct (unless wearing a mask prevents us from worshipping God in a proper and righteous way.) Neither is it sinful conduct not to get vaccinated.”

One of the reasons, then, why we are publishing certain articles on vaccinations, wearing masks, etc., is to enable the reader to come to balanced conclusions, also in reliance on viewpoints which the mass media might reject and label as “fake news.” This does not mean, however, that we necessarily endorse these viewpoints—they are presented to help the reader in conducting his or her own proper research and reach an individual decision based on his or her circumstances. In fact, we always state the following in our Current Events section: 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.”

When the Church is approached by members for support of an individual application for religious exemption against vaccinations, the Church will most certainly support such an application, if it is based on sincerely held religious convictions, because whatever is not of faith is sin. The Church would not take the position, however, that vaccinations are sinful per se, and that they must therefore be rejected.

When focusing on the concept that the Church, or individual members, must stand up in unison with others in a concerted effort to resist governmental mandates, it is important to understand what the role of the Church is. We said this in one of our Q&As on slavery:

“… it has never been the role, function and responsibility of the Church of God to change the world now, or to undermine the systems and governments of this world. True Christians don’t participate in the wars of this world, nor do they vote in governmental elections nor participate in any attempts to overthrow the government… Christians are ambassadors of Christ and representatives of a better world–the heavenly kingdom–to be set up on this earth within a few years from now… This is NOT God’s world, but Satan’s (compare Matthew 4:8-9); Christians are not here for the purpose of ‘improving’ Satan’s rotten evil world (Galatians 1:4)–of trying to make this evil world a better world. They know that this world will be REPLACED by a better world (Daniel 2:44; Revelation 11:15-18)–attempts to IMPROVE or change THIS Satan-ruled world for the better are doomed to fail.”

This is not to say that we must never object, individually, or stand up to governmental conduct which affects us or our loved ones personally. Our free booklet, Obeying God Rather Than Men,” gives many examples in this regard. Nor do we say that the Church must not speak out against dangerous governmental measures or wrong governmental conduct—the opposite is the case, and we prove this fact weekly in our Current Events section.  As God’s Church, it is our duty and responsibility to cry aloud and spare not and show the people, including governmental officials, their sins and transgressions against God’s Law. But the Church has never endorsed the concept that our members should participate in demonstrations for or against governmental measures, as demonstrations, far too often, end up in violence or are being manipulated by extreme radical factions.

One most important reason for many articles in our Current Events section, over the years, dealing with governmental actions worldwide in general and measures regarding Covid-19 in particular, is to unmask the propaganda and the push of Big Pharma for [costly] vaccinations, thereby omitting to even address any potential dangers, while ignoring natural immunity. It is a fact that once you have had corona, there is no need for vaccinations. Many scientists admit that natural immunity is at least as effective as vaccinations. But natural immunity does not make Big Pharma rich. We also observe the prophesied development of worldwide dictatorships by adopting governmental measures even in democracies, which would have been thought of as totally unacceptable a few years ago. Far too often, this development is accompanied by the constant pressure and verbal and sometimes even actual persecution of the unvaccinated through doctors, governmental agencies, the mass media, relatives and friends, making them scapegoats, not unlike the Jews were made scapegoats in the past, speaking of a pandemic of the unvaccinated, and ignoring, omitting or under-reporting the cases where people got sick even though [or because?] they were fully vaccinated.

In the past, it was said that when you have an underlying condition, you should not get vaccinated—especially the elderly. Now, this was all turned around because this approach does not make Big Pharma rich. Also, they are going after our children now, even though the chance they get corona is very slim, and if they do, the symptoms are very mild and brief. But again, not vaccinating kids does not put money into and fill the coffers of Big Pharma.

So, we are warning in our Updates of governmental control, including the unconstitutional and illegal push for mandatory vaccinations, censorship and suppression of medical opinions which are not in conformity with governmental directives, Big Pharma or the mass media, and, most importantly, we are addressing the blindness of the masses following whatever the mass media and doctors paid by Big Pharma are telling them, even though some of it has been proven to be untrue, showing thereby how easy it will be for the vast majority to follow the coming beast and to accept its mark.

Paul warns you not to be deceived with empty words (Ephesians 5:6), and he is telling you that you must be “fully convinced” in your “own mind” (Romans 14:5). We try to help you to reach, for yourself, this unshakable personal conviction, which will be pleasing in God’s sight.

©2024 Church of the Eternal God