Last Updated: August 16, 2013
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This site is dedicated to maintaining the truth, true Christians, believed from the time of the apostles, and restored, by God, through Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong.  It is not intended to attack any person(s) or group(s).  It follows the instructions we have been given by the faithful teachers, both recent, and in the time of the apostles, namely Jude 1:3 "Beloved, while I was very diligent to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints."  Although it may seem some content here would contradict this statement, please remember the apostle Paul stated in Act 20:29 "For I know this, that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock.  (v30) Also from among yourselves men will rise up, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after themselves.  (v31) Therefore watch, and remember that for three years I did not cease to warn everyone night and day with tears."  It is with this same concern this information is provided to those who seek what was, and now is being taught.

Resources Comments
Herbert W. Armstrong Library

Biblical Calendar
  Loose Bricks Blog Site

Idolatry
by Mr. Roderick C. Meredith
  The Marriage Supper
by Mr. Richard Ames
  The Falling Away
by Mr. Douglas Winnail

Exo 20:4-6 "You shall not make for yourself a carved image—any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; (v5) you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, (v6) but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.

Eze 20:23 Also I raised My hand in an oath to those in the wilderness, that I would scatter them among the Gentiles and disperse them throughout the countries,  (v.24) because they had not executed My judgments, but had despised My statutes, profaned My Sabbaths, and their eyes were fixed on their fathers' idols.


Mr. Meredith compares using the cross to using makeup (Audio Clip)

You had better be sure how far you can go, if anywhere, with idolatry.  Considering the origins of cross worship, a true Christian would never have anything like the cross in their possession.  If someone compares picket fences to crosses, they are being extremely ridiculous, trying to make you look foolish about a very serious issue.  Satan has used this same tactic from Adam & Eve, to the present, to get you to compromise about what GOD commands.  Is testing GOD on this issue worth your LIFE?

The cross, and the heart, are two sides of the same coin.  Do a little research on the origins of these two symbols and you will not have anything to do with them!

 

Many are calling this new teaching from Mr. Ames a resemblance of the rapture teaching.  This pride and vanity is poisoning the leaders in LCG by using false and un-provable teachings, from pagan religions, to prove their theological/intellectual superiority.  The competition between the splinter groups has become almost funny, if it were not so serious.  Do not be blown around by every wind of doctrine.


The link below is a well researched document written by a prior member of LCG who wants to remain anonymous. 

Anonymous Letter from a LCG member to the LCG Ministry

This document has been translated into Spanish by another faithful member of the Church:

Carta anónima de miembro de la IDV

 

Leaders in LCG now believe many millions, or even billions, will respond to the messages they are proclaiming, and then fall away, before the second coming of Jesus Christ.  Mr. Winnail stated this in a private meeting.  This concept is not Biblical.  The true church has always taught, from the Bible, that the true Gospel proclamation would be a small work, done by a few chosen people, not by a large percentage of the world.  This concept is what happens when pride and vanity takes over, just as it did with the Catholic church.


In his latest co-worker letter dated April 16, 2013, Mr. Meredith wrote the following, which is more, very creative, "New Truth".  We have always known the true definition of Apostasy is "Falling Away" from the truth!.  All valid translations of the Bible has it right

Mr. Meredith: One of the most vital yet neglected prophecies in all of the Bible is found in 2 Thessalonians 2. After setting the stage in chapter 1 by describing Christ returning with “flaming fire” and “taking vengeance” on those who do not obey the Gospel, the inspired Apostle Paul warns Christians not to let anyone deceive them by teaching that Christ is coming without the most massive anti-God rebellion in human history occurring first. The Apostle Paul was inspired to write, “For that Day will not come, unless the rebellion comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of perdition, who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, proclaiming himself that he is God” (2 Thessalonians 2:3-4, RSV)...The idea that this coming total rejection of God is simply an “apostasy” from some teaching of some church or group of churches is simply not indicated here! Even many of us in the past have assumed this—but that is not the case when you understand the original Greek language in the whole context which involves the entire world rebelling against the true God!


Mr. John H. Ogwyn gave a fine sermon on where we are in prophecy, what is the falling away, and what we should be doing to prepare for the second coming of Jesus Christ.  Please listen to the sermon; it is very inspiring.

Mr. John Ogwyns' Sermon.


 
Is the Living Church of God teaching a different Gospel?

Mat 24:14 "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."

Mar 16:15-16 And He said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.  (v. 16) He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned..."

Gal 1:6-9 I marvel that you are turning away so soon from Him who called you in the grace of Christ, to a different gospel, (v.7) which is not another; but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ. (v.8) But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed. (v.9) As we have said before, so now I say again, if anyone preaches any other gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed.

 
Gospel of the Kingdom (Mr. Carl McNair) - Clip
Gospel of the Kingdom (Mr. Carl McNair) - Full Sermon

The beauty of what Mr. Armstrong taught was that you did not need to be, or taught by, a PhD to understand the truth.  Incredibly Mr. Armstrong warned about these types of teachers.  This information should show how simple the true Gospel is, and how beautifully it fits together, until intellectuals make it so complicated that no one could understand.  There is ONE Gospel, either Mr. Armstrong taught it, or you are being taught it now by LCG.  They are not the same.  If the very basic information contained here does not show the difference, what will?  Below you will find side-by-side statements made about the subject.  First, a Personal From Joseph W. Tkach, the Pastor General of the Worldwide Church of God, who took the organization into apostasy.  Next to Joseph Tkach's commentary you will notice the similarity to Mr. Meredith's current understanding.  Finally, next to Mr. Meredith's letter, you will find what Mr. Meredith once taught as the meaning of 1 Corinthians 15:1-7. Another of the many examples of the new teaching is July 7th LCN, titled, "Two Vital Aspects of the Gospel"

As you can see this "better understanding" is nothing new, and you may ask yourself: "Is this important", or "Is my salvation at stake"?  Let's take an excerpt from the same article LCG now uses to promote their Gospel teaching.  In Tomorrows World Magazine - January 1970 Vol. II, No. 1 - What is the TRUE GOSPEL Mr. Armstrong states, on page 5: "WHY, then, has the world lost sight of that Gospel? WHY do people believe different gospels today?  This is an astounding, incredible situation! It ought to shake you out of passive indifference. YOUR eternity is at stake! This is not a nonconsequential, unimportant matter!"  Please read this article.  It explains the true gospel.  Do not believe what others say; read it for yourself!

Mr. Carl McNair, a faithful leader in the church of God, gave a fine sermon on the "Gospel of the Kingdom".  Please view the clip from that sermon.  A link to the full sermon is available below the video clip.  Finally here is a link to Mr. Armstrong's booklet "What is the TRUE GOSPEL?", which is basically the 1970 article turned into a booklet.

Do you really believe GOD, through Mr. Armstrong, preached a false, or incomplete Gospel for over 50 years?  Only to create an unlimited number of "denominations", teaching their own beliefs, to confuse, or trick us?  You know that GOD gave us the way, and is now waiting to see if we will believe.  Remember the work GOD did through Mr. Armstrong.   Everything is there...why do we resist?

 

Quotes where Tkach & Mr. Meredith NOW agree

Joseph W. Tkach - Personal:
"Some want to believe that the real gospel message should hinge, not on the life, death and resurrection of the Son of God, like the Bible says..."

Roderick C. Meredith - Letter:
"Anyway, for all of us who read carefully the book of Acts - the inspired account of what the apostles did and taught - it is easy to ascertain that they greatly emphasized, at that time, the fact that Christ's death and resurrection as a vital part of the Gospel."

Joseph W. Tkach - Personal:
"I listen to the true gospel, the real good news, the gospel Jesus and the apostles preached: Jesus Christ and him crucified...which is the gospel of the kingdom of God!
"

Roderick C. Meredith - Letter:
"So this, Paul states, was "the Gospel"€ which he preached - and then proceeds to explain the Gospel as the message about how we are "saved"€ through Christ'€™s death, resurrection..."

Quotes WHEN Tkach & Mr. Meredith DISAGREED

Joseph W. Tkach - Mr. Meredith Marking:
"The Global Church of God, founded by Roderick C. Meredith, has been formed on the premise that the Worldwide Church of God has no business changing or revising any teaching of Herbert W. Armstrong."

Roderick C. Meredith - Gospel Booklet (1 Cor. 15:1-8):
"And this, of course, further proves that the Gospel Paul has been talking about in this chapter is not focused on the person of Christ; it is about the Kingdom of God and what we must experience to enter it-a resurrection to spirit life!
"

     
Joseph W. Tkach - 1 Cor. 15:1-8 as "the Gospel"
(Notice the paragraphs we have emphasized)
Dr. Roderick C. Meredith - 1 Cor. 15:1-7 as "the Gospel"
(Notice the emphasized words Mr. Meredith uses)
Mr. Roderick C. Meredith - 1 Cor. 15:1-8
NOT
"the Gospel"

PERSONAL FROM Joseph W. Tkach (WN Aug. 11, 1989)


Dear Brethren,


Why has the Church been preaching so much about Jesus Christ? That's an excellent question, and one that certainly deserves an answer.

 

Let's begin in 1 Corinthians 15:1-8, where Paul described the gospel Jesus gave his Church.  Notice carefully his words:

 

 "Now, brothers, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain.

 

"For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, after that he appeared to Peter, and then to the Twelve.  "After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep.  Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles, and last of all he appeared to me also, as to one abnormally born."

 

What Paul' calls "of first importance" is the fact that Jesus is the Messiah or Christ, that he died for our sins, was buried and was raised, all according to the Scriptures.

 

Further, Paul highlights the fact that there were plenty of witnesses to the fact of Christ's resurrection, lest any should doubt that Jesus was really raised.

 

"By this gospel you are saved," Paul asserts. Our goal, like Paul's, should be to pass on that which we have received, that which is of "first importance."

 

What we have received, and what we must therefore pass on, is exactly what Paul and the other apostles received-that which is of first importance" that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures."

 

All other biblical teaching hinges on these primary facts. Only the Son of God could die for our sins, and it is only because he did and was raised again from the dead that we can live in steadfast assurance of his return and of our inheritance of eternal life.

 

Therefore John could write: "We accept man's testimony, but God's testimony is greater because it is the testimony of God, which he has given about his Son. Anyone who believes in the Son of God has this testimony in his heart.

 

"Anyone who does not believe God has made him out to be liar, because he has not believed the testimony God has given about his Son.

 

"And this is the testimony : God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life" (1 John 5:9-12).

 

Now, brethren, it is amazing that some should have a problem with that. Some want to believe that the real gospel message should hinge, not on the life, death and resurrection of the Son of God, like the Bible says, but on warning the United States about being attacked by a united Europe.

 

I am occasionally criticized by certain ones who think we are not preaching the gospel if we don't "shout out the warning: Europe is uniting and preparing to attack the United States."

 

But, much to their chagrin, I don't listen. Instead, I listen to what God tells us in his Word.

 

I listen to the true gospel, the real good news, the gospel Jesus and the apostles preached: Jesus Christ and him crucified ( 1 Corinthians 2:2), Jesus Christ in you, the hope of glory (Colossians 1 :27), the resurrection from the dead, the true message of hope and salvation for humanity, which is the gospel of the kingdom of God!

Email Sent to The Scarborough Family

 

Email RE:  Ad post from RCG

From:         Dr. Roderick C. Meredith

Date:          September 6, 2011

 

Dear Scarborough Family,

 

First paragraph omitted to exclude the names of others Mr. Meredith mentions.

 

In any such confrontation about this topic, be sure to encourage anyone who is confused about the matter to carefully reread 1 Corinthians 15:1-7. Here the Apostle Paul states under inspiration, "€œMoreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand, by which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you - unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures, and that He was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve. After that He was seen by over five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain to the present, but some have fallen asleep. After that He was seen by James, then by all the apostles. Then last of all He was seen by me also, as by one born out of due time."

 

So this, Paul states, was "the Gospel"€ which he preached - and then proceeds to explain the Gospel as the message about how we are "saved"€ through Christ'€™s death, resurrection and appearance to hundreds of people at that time. Interestingly, my son Jim pointed out to me just the other day that if you look up the terms "€œGospel of Christ"€ and "Gospel of the Kingdom"€ and related passages in your computer, you will find out that the Bible actually mentions the various ways of talking about "Christ's Gospel" or the "Gospel of Jesus" more than it does the Gospel of the Kingdom.

 

Anyway, for all of us who read carefully the book of Acts - the inspired account of what the apostles did and taught - it is easy to ascertain that they greatly emphasized, at that time, the fact that Christ'€™s death and resurrection as a vital part of the Gospel. So I hope all of us can grow together in understanding this vital issue. Frankly, anyone who does not do this or who "€œdenies"€ Jesus Christ in this way will simply not have the degree of reward in God's Kingdom that he would otherwise have. And, if someone totally rejects Christ in the way they approach this matter, he or she will not even be in God'€™s coming Kingdom!

Last paragraph omitted to exclude the names of others Mr. Meredith mentions.

With Christian love,

Roderick C. Meredith

Global Church of God booklet: "Do You believe the True Gospel?" (Sept. 1995) Chapter 1, Page 11-12

"The Gospel Which I Preached to You ..."

The weight of scriptural evidence proves that the Gospel does not center solely on Jesus the Messiah who died for our sins-though that information is vitally important. Yet many argue that 1 Corinthians 15:1-8 outlines the whole Gospel. Let's look at what it says:

Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand, by which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you-unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures, and that He was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve. After that He was seen by over five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain to the present, but some have fallen asleep.  After that He was seen by James, then by all the apostles. Then last of all He was seen by me also, as by one born out of due time.

 Many stop reading right there and proclaim that these few verses printed in boldface type comprise the entire Gospel. But do they?

 Notice here these boldface type words represent what Paul delivered "first of all." The New International Version renders this, "as of first importance"-an unlikely translation. The original Greek is en protois, which is probably best rendered, "in the first place" or "among the first things." While it could be "among the most important things"-not THE most important thing-"first in time order" fits more naturally here.

Why was the story of Christ's death and resurrection among the first things Paul explained to the Corinthians? The Jewish synagogue there had already given them a strong background in the Old Testament and the law of God. So he didn't need to lay that foundation.  Moreover, Jesus Christ was widely unknown to the world at that time. His story had to be told. Today, most of the world has heard of Christ-at least in a general way. We do not need to continually proclaim, "Jesus loves you! Jesus died for your sins!" Almost everyone has already heard that to the point of overkill. What they don't know is WHY He died or even WHAT sin is!

Who Christ was and what He did was one of the FIRST things Paul told the Corinthians. But he didn't stop there. And neither must we stop at 1 Corinthians 15:8. We must read through the entire chapter-traditionally called the "resurrection chapter" (clearly identifying the context of verses 1-8). As we will see, this chapter is one of the clearest summaries of the true Gospel in the Bible!

In verse 12, Paul asks, "Now if Christ is preached that He has been raised from the dead, how do some among you say that there is no resurrection of the dead?" This is the context. Some were claiming there wouldn't be a literal, future resurrection. Apparently, they thought the "resurrection" wasn't literal-that it was only a metaphor for their new life in Christ (like the heresy mentioned in 2 Tim. 2:17 -18) and that they were already in the Kingdom of God.  Paul answers, "But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ is not risen .... Then our preaching is vain and your faith is also vain" (1 Cor. 15:13-14). Paul is saying that if we are not going to be literally resurrected, then Christ wasn't literally resurrected-but since he has offered plenty of testimony that Christ was actually raised from the dead, so will we all be later on. He adds, "If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable" (v. 19 KJV).

Paul continues, "In Christ all shall be made alive. But each one in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, afterward those who are Christ's at His coming" (vv. 22-23). This is God's Master Plan, focusing on His order of salvation. "Then comes the END, when He delivers the KINGDOM to God the Father, when He puts an end to ALL RULE and ALL AUTHORITY and POWER.  For He must REIGN till He has put all enemies under His feet" (vv. 24-25). The Gospel being declared here is obviously the Good News about the Kingdom of God! Why have people ignored this?

Paul then explains that the future resurrection is what it's all about or it's all for nothing. He corrects people for letting down in their efforts to overcome sin based on the belief that they are safely in the Kingdom NOW! (vv. 30-34). Next he shows, in verses 35-49, that we are to be literally resurrected with glorified spirit bodies, just as Christ "became a lite-giving spirit" (v. 45). Then, in verse 50, Paul emphatically states, "Flesh and blood cannot inherit the KINGDOM OF GOD." That proves the point! We can't be in the Kingdom now! And this, of course, further proves that the Gospel Paul has been talking about in this chapter is not focused on the person of Christ; it is about the Kingdom of God and what we must experience to enter it-a resurrection to spirit life!

Joseph W. Tkach - Marks Roderick C. Meredith
(Notice the paragraphs we have emphasized)
   

PERSONAL FROM Joseph W. Tkach (WN 1993)

 

Dear Brethren,

In light of the fact that a former minister has decided to start his own church, and has sent a letter to many · members of the Worldwide Church of God, I thought it best to briefly restate the Church's position on the overall concepts this newly formed church is espousing.

The Global Church of God, founded by Roderick C. Meredith, has been formed on the premise that the Worldwide Church of God has no business changing or revising any teaching of Herbert W. Armstrong.

Dr. Meredith, choosing to ignore the great, fundamental issues of the New Testament, has focused his attention on every point on which he feels he can disagree with us. Basically, he disagrees with every change the Church has made since the death of Mr. Armstrong.

Dr. Meredith still argues with the biblical fact that the New Testament phrase "born again" refers to conversion.

Also, he cannot grasp the fact that God has called His people to be citizens of His Kingdom.

Further he deceives his readers by inaccurately representing what we teach about Jesus; victory over sin, about the Holy Spirit, about eternal life and about the gospel.

He misrepresents our teaching about divine healing. He misrepresents our teaching about the.  Ten Commandments and obedience to God.

In addition, Dr. Meredith clings to the false idea that human beings will someday be God in exactly the same way God himself is God, differing only in authority.

He also clings to the error that Ezekiel 33:1-7 is a commission to the Church, something taught neither by Jesus nor the apostles. 

   

In late 1985, Mr. Armstrong told me that Dr. Meredith deeply desired to be pastor general, and warned me that just as Dr. Meredith had been a continual thorn in Mr. Armstrong's side, so he would be a continual problem to me. Mr. Armstrong had himself suspended Dr. Meredith from attending services for about eight months in 1979-80. We have worked patiently and respectfully with Dr. Meredith for the past three years with no positive response on his part.

  Mr. Armstrongs' letter to Mr. Meredith during the 1979-80 time period Joseph Tkach mentions in the paragraph on the left.

This information is for context reference only, and may be controversial, so read it at your own discretion.

Well, now Dr. Meredith has his wish. He has proclaimed himself pastor general of his own church.

We certainly do not bear any ill will toward Dr. Meredith, nor toward anyone else who starts a church.

We do, however, need to avoid being deceived by false teaching, and we should take care not to be led astray by emotional or sentimental arguments based on a false loyalty to past teachings.

Our loyalty is to God and his Word first and foremost. Tradition is valuable and important, but it must be shaped by the Bible, not vice versa.

We should pray that God would open Dr. Meredith's mind to the truth and lead him to repentance, so that he will someday be useful in the gospel.

We should also pray for those innocent ones who may be deceived by this tragic effort to turn people's hearts away from the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

Ask for understanding

Let's be clear about one thing: We will not change the course Jesus Christ has placed us on simply because some people refuse to read the Bible honestly, refuse to believe the truth and refuse to understand the gospel, which is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes (Romans 1:16).

It grieves me, though, that some few may be deceived by any person's clever arguments designed to get a following for himself.

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, if you don't understand something, please ask. If you are confused, I recommend that you study what we have actually written and preached, not what someone with his own agenda tells you we teach.

Again I state, as I have continually, that God leads us to be committed to teaching what the Bible teaches, regardless of tradition - our own or anyone else's.

God leads his Church through his Spirit. The Father draws us to himself through his Son (John 6:44, 14:6).

The closer we move toward Jesus Christ the better, because it is only through him that we can be reconciled to the Father (2 Corinthians 5: 18-20).

Loyalty to traditions

Some people, sad to say, are more loyal to traditional teachings and explanations than they are to the Word of God.

In their deep longing for personal prestige and power, they are willing to prey on those God has been calling to freedom in his Son, wanting to take them back into the bondage of an impossible salvation by works.

While they falsely accuse us of teaching disobedience to God, they deny the grace of God by refusing to acknowledge the Bible truth: "For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith-and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God- not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do" (Ephesians 2:8-10).

They try to convince those who follow them that their obedience will bring them God's salvation, falling into the trap Paul warns them against: boasting of their supposed spiritual superiority.

In their spiritual vanity, they fail to understand that God creates his people in Christ Jesus for good works, and that our good works belong to God and bring glory to him and not to ourselves.

They fail to understand that God commands us to walk humbly before him (Micah 6:8) and that God gives grace to the humble (1 Peter 5:5), to those who know their need for him (Luke 18:14).

These are people who set themselves up as the spiritual standard for others, yet cannot see that their own "righteousness" is as filthy rags before God. They believe they can somehow merit God's favor by their "goodness," while they discredit us for proclaiming that salvation is by God's grace toward us for the sake of his Son, whose blood covers our sins (1 Peter 1:18-19).

They believe they obtained the Holy Spirit by their obedience, when Paul condemned such empty, self-righteous reasoning (Galatians 3:2-5). They seek to establish their own righteousness by obedience to the law, making faith in the only One who can save them of no effect.

In so doing, these people miss the true righteousness in the Holy Spirit that comes through faith in Jesus Christ-God's own work in us of spiritual transformation of the inner person, cleansing the heart and mind of the corruption of sinfulness, and producing the fruit of the Spirit.

Instead, they settle for their own religiosity, their outward show of righteousness through their personal efforts at lawkeeping, which results not in the deep recognition of their total dependence on the mercy of God, but rather in their feelings of spiritual superiority over all who do not agree with them and follow them.

God's calling is for eternity

We have a long way to go as we grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. In fact, we are called to a whole lifetime of total commitment to all the things of Christ.

God does not call his people to just "hang on" for a few short years. Nor does he call us just to save us from whatever war, persecution or other tragedy the future might hold.

God has called us to be faithful until death, regardless of whether that comes in times of peace and plenty or in times of suffering and trial.

God's. calling is to enter his kingdom for all eternity. The gospel he has given us is the gospel of eternal salvation in his eternal kingdom; it is not a gospel of saving our physical lives or of getting delivered from persecution.

God will choose to deliver from physical suffering whom he wills, according to his transcendent purpose in our lives - and he hears the cries of his saints.

He often delivers us out of our troubles, but in faith we know that he knows best, and, like Jesus, we want his will, not our own, to be done.

Bu the gospel has to do with our eternal inheritance, and that is something those who "loved not their lives unto death" will receive when Jesus returns (Revelation 12:11, King James Version).

The deliverance God gives us through faith in his Son is deliverance from the bondage of sin, and from sin's result: death. God will rescue those who are his at Jesus' return, changing their mortality into immortality, and they will live forever with him as his glorified children.

Dear brethren, God has blessed us beyond measure, showing us where we have gone off on tangents, where we put our priorities on physical things that took our minds off the great spiritual reality of salvation in his Son.

Through the guidance of the Holy Spirit, God has brought us back to his Word, and we should pray daily that we will never cease to follow his lead. Pray for one another, and pray for me, that God will guide me and give me courage in his Spirit. My prayers are continually with you.