Herbert W Armstrong Library
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   Greetings brethren, all of you. Today is the fiftieth anniversary of the observance of Pentecost by this church, since the Philadelphia era was founded. But since the church was founded, it is about the nineteen hundred and fifty-second anniversary. The church was founded a thousand, nine hundred fifty two years ago, today.
   Well what does it all mean? Well I have started so many of the annual holy days, at which I have spoken, by saying, "Why are we here?" and "Why are we here on a Sunday?" And sometimes some of these annual holy days have occurred on a Wednesday or a Thursday and I have said, "Why are we here?" on such a day.
   Originally this festival was not called Pentecost, that's a New Testament term, it comes from the Greek word 'Pente' meaning fifty, and 'cost' meaning count. You count fifty days, beginning on a Sunday. Now for forty years this church counted it correctly as the Bible tells us, but we have to see and read the Bible in the English language. And originally the Old Testament, and the beginning of all of the Holy Days, and the instruction of how to count, and from where to count, was in the twenty-third chapter of Leviticus in the Old Testament.
   And all translations I remember it was more than fifty years ago that I checked about, more like fifty-five, or six, or seven years ago I checked with every existing translation at that time, and every one said count from a Sunday. Now you count fifty days. One day from Sunday would always be Monday. Two days would be Tuesday, and so on. And fifty days would come out on Monday, and relying on the false translations of all translators into the language in which we speak, we were keeping the wrong day but we were correctly counting. And God told us to count and that is what He held us responsible for and we did count correctly.

50 Years Of Philadelphia Era

   After exactly forty years God opened our minds to the fact that it was a mistranslation; that the original Hebrew word otherwise is always pronounced 'on,' or translated 'on' in the English, and not 'from,' or 'beginning with,' or, 'count beginning on' that day. And that made the change back to Sunday, and it really should have been all the time. Now normally this church does not meet on a Sunday, but annually on the day of Pentecost we do.
   Now this day of Pentecost is an annual Holy Day. The Church of God and I hope soon to bring you a history that you have perhaps not heard, of the church, and especially of the last fifty years. Because this is the fiftieth anniversary year of the Philadelphia era of the church. And the actual anniversary will occur in the fall at about the Feast of Tabernacles time because it was in October, just fifty years ago, that the Philadelphia era was really founded in a country school house, twelve miles west of Eugene, Oregon.
   And so during the Feast of Tabernacles, {1} I expect to be here for the first day and to speak by satellite to all of our churches all over the United States and Canada, and even England. And again, on the last day to all of the churches of the United States and Canada.
   Now that, I believe, will be on a Thursday, and on Friday I will probably fly up to Eugene, Oregon where the church started, and on the Sabbath, because it was on a Sabbath in October, and this will be practically almost precisely, the fiftieth anniversary to the day I hope to be with the brethren at that feast site in Eugene.
   And we have not been having a feast site in Eugene, so it's rather significant that it is being held there this year. It has been the last two or three, few, years, and I hope to be with them up there, then I will be back here for the last day.

God's Master Plan

   Now God made the Sabbath for man. Jesus said, "the Sabbath was made for man." (Mark 2: 27) It's one of those things that was made. It had to have a maker, and He was its maker because "all things were made by Him and nothing was made that was not made by Him." (John 1:3 paraphrased) He made the Sabbath. It was made for man, and it was made when man was made, at the creation of man.
   But the annual Holy Days were made for the church, and they began at the time the church of the Old Testament began. Now that was only a church under the Old Covenant. It was a church that did not have the Spirit of God, and I hope I can bring out a little of the difference as we go along. It is also a nation, called originally, the Kingdom of Israel. A little later, three of the tribes split off and called themselves the Kingdom of Judah and they are known as the Jews today. Israel, however, were not known as the Jews, and never have been. The world doesn't seem to know that today, but God has revealed many things to this church that are not known in the world.
   But these Festivals picture God's master plan for carrying out His purpose here below. Now I think you have heard me say time and time again, that Winston Churchill, one of the last, if not the last of the so-called 'great men' of the last few centuries of time, said before the United States Congress, "There is a purpose being worked out here below." Well, God Almighty, of course, is working out that purpose, and He has a master plan for working it out.
   Now that purpose is that He is reproducing Himself. The world does not know that. The so-called great ministers, the churches of this world, the churches of so-called Christianity, they do not know that. But God is reproducing Himself. That is the purpose, and the Holy Days picture the master plan for working out that purpose. And reproducing Himself means, to make us at one with Christ.
   Now the next annual Holy Day will come in the Fall, on the first day of the seventh month of the sacred calendar that God has given His people, that is not observed by the world, which will come in the Autumn. And that, of course, will picture the second coming of Christ.
   And then the next festival after that is the Day of Atonement, and Atonement means well just take it, spell it out, A - T then put a hyphen there - O - N - E - one, then put a hyphen there; then M - E - N - T. That is Atonement. It means at - one - ment, and it is making us at one with God until we are actually born of God.

The God Family

   Now in Genesis 1:26 you will read that God and 'God' there is 'Elohim' and Elohim is a plural, and it refers to more than one person. And that's explained in the first chapter of John in the New Testament.
   "In the beginning [again, it says in the beginning] was the Word..." (John 1:1)
   The Logos, as it is in the language of the New Testament. That is, the New Testament originally was written altogether there might have been one or two little exceptions with a sentence or so -but practically altogether in the Greek language. And in the Greek language, Logos simply means 'Word' or 'Spokesman' the one who speaks.
   "And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us..." (John 1:14) As you read in the fourteenth verse of that same chapter.
   Now {2}John 1:1 refers to those two. It says there;
   "...and the Word was with God [another person], and the Word was God." (John 1:1)
   They are both God. I have said so many times it could be like, in a certain place is John, and John was with Smith, and John was Smith and John could be Smith's father and John could be Smith's son. Smith is the family name, and God is the family name. And the whole family, and we are begotten into that family, is named after GOD.
   GOD is the family name that's why we are the Church of God. The world doesn't know that. But in Genesis 1:26 "Elohim said." Now in this case, undoubtedly that was the one who became God the Father when Jesus was born of the virgin Mary, and God was His Father. It was He who was speaking then, and speaking to the Word, and He said;
   "..Let us make man in our image, after our likeness:" (Genesis 1:26)
   They two constituted a family. Now they were not husband and wife. They had no sex in that sense. They did not reproduce. Now they were going to in creation, because they were creators, and their next act of creation now was to form the kind of species out of matter from the dust of the ground that could reproduce.
   Now there is no evidence, that up until the very week in which Adam was created the first human that there had ever been any kind of creatures created, or existing, or living, that could reproduce themselves. But now God was going to reproduce Himself, and out of matter. In other words, He was going to take matter and ULTIMATELY turn that matter into GOD BEINGS GOD PERSONS. Can you believe that?
   Let me tell you, the great evangelists of this world don't believe it. The Pope at Rome does not believe it. The great ministers of the protestant churches don't believe it, but that is true and that is what your Bible teaches. That is what the Word of God reveals to us. The very fact that God said, "Let us make man in OUR IMAGE" the only way we can come into His image is that we are made at one with Him and that is a family relationship and it presupposes a family relationship.
   Now, let's understand this: What is God? God is a spirit. I've said so many times that there is no church that knows who and what God is. God is not a Trinity. God is not one person, as Judaism believes. The One that Judaism believes is God became Christ. But He came to reveal the Father, and they didn't even know of God, who became the Father when Christ was born.
   Now, how then, is God, out of human clay, going to reproduce Himself and create God beings that will be born of Him and become His children until they become God beings? In the first place, out of that clay, He did make man in His own image, after His own likeness or it is Elohim, which is a plural word, said, "Let US" not "me." And God said it, Jesus spoke the word and man was made and created.
   Now in the second chapter of Genesis and verse seven, you read that the Eternal, meaning the one who became Christ, The [Eternal] God [made] man of the dust of the ground [out of matter which God had created] and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul." (Genesis 2:7)
   Now the world believes that the soul is immortal, but to that living soul, God said that when he took of the wrong tree, and refused to take of the Tree of Life, he would surely die (Genesis 2:17). And three times in the book of Ezekiel, in one chapter, it is said, "The soul that sinneth it shall die." (Ezekiel 18:4,13,20) and the world doesn't believe it. The world believes Satan the devil who said, "You will not surely die." (Genesis 3:4 paraphrased)
   But how is God going to take man, created out of the dust of the ground, into whose nostrils was the breath of life and that merely gave him a temporary physio-CHEMICAL existence. That did not give him immortal life. Now God is a SPIRIT, you read in John 4:24. How thenis He going to make man a SPIRIT being and a very GOD PERSON?
   Man only had a temporary existence. Adam lived nine hundred and thirty years and he died. He took of the wrong tree. He rejected the Tree of Life, so he didn't get life, and Adam died after nine hundred and thirty years. Well now, take Romans the eighth chapter and verse eleven. How do we get eternal life today?
   "... if the Spirit of Him that raised up Jesus from the dead [now that is God the Father, and God is a Spirit, and before Jesus was born of the human virgin Mary, He was a Spirit. So God said] But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you [the Spirit of God could dwell in a human being], he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken [or make immortal] your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwell[s] in you." (Romans 8:11 paraphrased)
   We receive the begettal of immortal life by receiving the Holy Spirit. In other words, how did you get mortal life? Because the smallest cell in the human body, a sperm cell from your father, entered into and impregnated an egg cell inside the body of your mother, and it imparted physical life to that egg cell, and it became an embryo. And in four months time it was called a fetus, it began to take on human shape and form not human character but human shape and form. God made man after His image, after His likeness, and that has to do with human shape and form, although 'image' very often in the Bible, is used to indicate character.

Duality In Creation

   Now, there is a duality in creation. For example, God is making us first human out of the dust of the ground, and then we shall be begotten of the Spirit of God, and then we shall be born a spirit being, a God being, a son of God. But we become sons of God when we are first begotten, when we receive the Spirit of God, but not yet born only heirs, not yet inheritors, or possessors.
   Now there is duality in God's method of creation always, or nearly always. I'm not sure I examined every case to see that it's all that way, but in so many cases He uses the matter of duality. First we are made human, then we shall be made divine spirit, immortal beings.
   Now the first Adam the first man was physical, but he was not complete. There is duality in his physical creation. Physically he was not complete, he could not reproduce, and God said, "Reproduce and have children and replenish the earth." But he was unable to do it, a man can't do it alone. So God had to provide a wife for him. And they two came together and became one human one family a human family.
   They were separate beings, and God and the Word are separate beings. God and the Word are not male and female necessarily, but they are two beings that are one God. And Adam and Eve became two human beings that were one human family, and so God is one God family. Adam was physically incomplete until God made Eve for him.
   Now there was duality in his spiritual creation and his mental creation also. God created him first with a physical mind. That is, He put within his human brain one human spirit with which every human is born. Now whether that human spirit is imparted at the time of fertilization, or impregnation, or at the time of the first heart beat, or at the time of the first breath, at the time of birth, God doesn't tell us. But at least by the end of the first breath, every baby born has a spirit in connection, and it is a human spirit in connection with his brain, which animals do not have.
   Animals are not in the form and shape of God. They don't have hands, they have paws, and claws, and so on. I don't need to go further. They are not of the same construction. Man, however, is made in the same form and shape as God. So man's mind was incomplete, and his life was incomplete. He had only physical life, temporary life, he did not have spirit life, he only had carnal life imparted by a human spirit. And that human spirit is just so much spiritual essence, because spirit is essence, as we ordinarily talk of it.

The Holy Spirit Needed

   The Holy Spirit of God is spoken of as being poured like water. Jesus spoke of it as 'Rivers of Living Water' at times, and of the spirit being poured out. And the same Hebrew word, and the same Greek word, in the languages in which the Bible was written in both Old and New Testament, the word for 'spirit' is also the same word for breath, or wind, or air. So that might be an additional reason for thinking that when God breathed into man's nostrils the breath of life, that He breathed the spirit into him at that time. I don't know.
   Anyway, the human mind was created and made with one human spirit. Now the mind was physically complete, as complete as it needed to be. The human being chose the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Now there was good as well as evil, and man can have good intentions. He can have ideals. He can have ethics. He can have good principals, high morality, but he cannot have the righteousness of God without the Holy Spirit. He simply cannot have.
   The human spirit can impart many of the spiritual characteristics of attitude, and it can be either good or it can be evil, or it can be in-between. But without the Holy Spirit we cannot have the love of God, and we cannot have the only love that will fulfill God's law. Sin is the transgression of the law, and the law is the way of life, it's the way God and the Word originally lived. It's the way we ought to live. It's the way that brings peace, that brings harmony, cooperation. The way that creates. The way that produces. The way that accomplishes. It is the way God wants us to become.
   Now Adam rejected life, which means he rejected the Holy Spirit, and so he did not have the Holy Spirit in connection with his spirit. Now, in other words then, man mentally was incomplete. He had one spirit. He needed another spirit with it, the Holy Spirit of God to unite him with God.
   The law of God is love, and sin is the transgression of that law. But that law can only be fulfilled by love, and love is the fulfilling of the law. But God did not create man with the kind of love that can fulfill that law spiritually. It requires, as you read in Romans 5:5 "...the love of God shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit..." (Romans 5:5)
   Adam rejected that and Adam never had the Holy Spirit. His children never had, and his first son killed his second son; Cain killed Abel and then lied to God about it. And so, man rejected the Spirit of God, and then God shut off the Holy Spirit from mankind and from Adam's children, and Adam's family. And so that the Holy Spirit of God, which would impart life, and would give him the love that would fulfill God's law, and would give him spiritual KNOWLEDGE and spiritual comprehension and understanding he could not have.
   When you have the Holy Spirit it does make you at one with God, in a way. And that's why we are going to celebrate this Autumn, the Atonement or the Day of Atonement, which means at one with God. And also that Holy Day will show the banishment of Satan from this earth. We never can be at one with God until Satan is put away from this earth, as humanity cannot. Those of us that are called in the church can, but humanity as a whole, cannot. So we become at one through the Holy Spirit, at one with God in mind, and we are begotten as children of God by the Holy Spirit.
   Now Adam and his family then became the founders of a society, a civilization. Gradually education and other things developed. Government developed. Production developed out of the ground, at first just agriculture later other metallic things. Finally we came to the place that we had governments, we had agriculture, we had industry, we had technology, and today we have a very complicated, what we call, civilized world.
   But it has all been under the influence of Satan, and Satan is the one who got to the first man Adam through his wife Eve, and turned his mind to material things and a desire for material acquisition. And so God's law might be called the way of give, or love, which is outgoing, outgoing concern for the good of others. Whereas the law of God, the law of God is outgoing love for others. It regulates relationships.
   Now man was made, in order to have his first relationship with God, and after that, a relationship with other people. But Adam rejected a relationship with God. God has had a relationship with man, to a certain extent, all along. But man has not wanted a relationship with God. You take most people today, God is not in their lives. Oh, of course, everybody has heard about God. A lot of people don't believe in God at all and call themselves atheists.
   Most people however, might in the background of their minds, say "Oh well" if you ask them that, "Yeah, I believe there is a God." But they never think about God. How many times a day do they think about God? Well, you might say, almost never. God is not in their life. In their life, God is not in the picture.

Satan's World Versus God's World

   So a civilization developed, and it would develop as Satan led humanity, as he had led Eve and Adam in the beginning. And it became SATAN'S WORLD! Now brethren, there's the thing that people do not realize, and I wonder if you people realize it. THIS IS NOT GOD'S WORLD. God created the earth, God created man. God created all of the material that man has used to build his buildings, his cities, and all of the things of our civilization, but God didn't build it. Satan did.
   Satan is the one who inspired man and man used what God gave him at the beginning with his one human spirit, which Satan, being a spirit, could influence. It became Satan's world, and because Adam accepted Satan's way and the world has ever since. It has become Satan's world and people have become the children of Satan.
   Now if you'll read in the eighth chapter of the book of John, and begin with verse thirty, and you read on and you'll see how Jesus is talking there to those Jews who believed on Him. Now there were Jews who actually believed on Christ, but to them He said, "You are the children of your father the DEVIL. That SATAN is your father." (John 8:44 paraphrased)
   Well if they who believed on Him were the children of Satan, so are people today if they don't have the Spirit of God. You become a begotten child of God only when you receive the Holy Spirit of God, otherwise you are a child of the devil. You'll read it there in the eighth chapter of the book of John.
   Now, into such a world Satan's world came Jesus Christ, in Satan's world, and He started another world and that's why Jesus is called the second Adam. Adam was used to start a civilization, to start a WORLD. The world is the system, the society, the organization, the way people live, the beliefs that people hold, the relationships one with another, the way they are organized that is the world.
   The word 'world' doesn't mean earth. The world is a development that has happened ON the earth, altogether different than just the earth. We talk about the end of the world. That doesn't mean the end of the earth. It means the end of this system, this society, this civilization. Thank GOD it's about over. Thank God it's about over.
   Christ, the second Adam, came over nineteen hundred... well nineteen hundred and eighty some years ago I guess now. And He came to start God's world. He came to start GOD'S WORLD! THIS IS NOT GOD'S WORLD. BRETHREN MOST OF US HAVE GROWN UP BELIEVING THAT THIS IS THE WORLD GOD'S WORLD. It is NOT God's world. This is SATAN'S WORLD and the people in it are called the children of Satan the devil. THIS IS NOT GOD'S WORLD. I don't know, can I say that loud enough? Did your ears get it? But did your mind get it? I don't know, I just wonder if our people believe that even yet even this church, and this is the only church that would believe it.
   Now then, God's purpose is to reproduce Himself, and that is, in the final analysis, a spiritual creation. As I say, there is duality in the creation, first was the physical and then comes the spiritual. Now the physical started with Adam, but the second part, the SPIRITUAL creation, started with the second Adam, Jesus Christ. That's the first time that God's world was started.
   Now, in the sermonette you heard of a grain of mustard seed and how small it can be and can grow to the greatest of herbs. Alright, that was a likeness of the Kingdom of God, and the Kingdom of God what is the Kingdom of God? Do you think that's going to heaven? We talk about the Kingdom of God, we ought to talk about the WORLD TOMORROW.
   We should talk about the NEXT KIND OF CIVILIZATION, a DIFFERENT civilization, a DIFFERENT WAY of organizing humanity, different governments, different educational system, different type of production and distribution, different LAWS, different everything almost. A different relationship, but our relationship will be first with our Maker.
   Today relationships are only people with people, and the only trouble in the world today is that people don't get along with people. The spirit in one person clashes with the spirit in another. In other words, attitudes. And in most everybody, our attitudes or spirit, which means attitude really, at least that's one of its meanings, of say, jealousy and envy, of antagonism, of hostility, of wanting to harm and destroy, wanting to take away from the other, not of cooperation and wanting to serve and wanting to help, and wanting to help one another. We want to keep the other from getting anything. We want to get it all for self. Have you come out of that world?
   The Holy Spirit of God in you will change you to having a love for your neighbor, and first of all, a love for God, and wanting to pray for even your enemies. I pray first for my enemies before I pray for any of you, because I love my enemies did you know that? I don't want to see them have to burn up in a Lake of Fire.
   My enemies are their own worst enemies. They're greater enemies of themselves than they are to me. I know that, and because I love them I have to PRAY for them, and I pray, I won't go to sleep at night until I pray for my enemies. How about you? Do you ever think of that?
   Have you come to have the love of God in your heart by the Holy Spirit of God so that you can love even your enemies, and want only the best for them? Now I don't pray that God will bless them physically and materially. I might and often do pray that He will bless them physically so far as, well health and protection is concerned. I don't want to see accidents and troubles come to them.
   But I don't pray that they become wealthy and have a lot of this world's goods, because that's what most of them want, and that's what would be bad for them. It wouldn't be good for them, and I pray that God will bless them with what He knows is good for them. And whatever God knows is good for them that's alright. I just ask Him to bless them with what He knows what is good, and He knows what is good for them.

The Spiritual Creation

   Now Jesus came to start the spiritual creation. The physical creation was started with the first Adam, but God started the spiritual creation with the second Adam, Jesus Christ, and that creation is a spiritual creation is still going on. Now, listen, God Himself has not abdicated because Adam sold out to Satan, and because this is Satan's world. That doesn't mean God bowed out and has left.
   Oh no! God rules the Universe, including the earth, but He is not actively ruling the earth, and has not been for six thousand years. He put the Archangel Lucifer on the throne, and He has left him on that throne and has not taken him off yet. He would not take him off until the second Adam, Jesus Christ, came and qualified to replace Satan as the ruler over the whole world.
   And so Satan is still ruling the governments of this world. The rulers in high places, and you'll read of that in the sixth chapter of the book of Ephesians. We are not wrestling against other people, flesh and blood. We are wrestling and having a struggle in our lives, and all this struggling of life is against principalities and powers and evil, wicked spirits in high places (Ephesians 6:12). They are the rulers of this world and people don't realize that. They just don't realize it.
   But God controls the whole universe, and God merely ALLOWS Satan to remain, and He ALLOWS mankind to go on serving Satan, and for a purpose. We have lessons to learn, and it's all going to work out to God's great purpose. God's purpose stands. God will finish His purpose.
   But you know, God has patience. We had a wonderful sermon on patience, I think that was yesterday. And God, He must be the author of patience, He has so much of it. I don't know how He could have as much patience as He's had with me. I just wonder, how about you? Does God have patience with you? But how much patience do you have?
   We've heard a lot lately about the joke of the person who prayed awful hard for patience. He says, "I want patience Lord, give me lots of patience, but give it to me right now. I want it right now, I don't want to wait." Well that's the way we humans are.
   Now the spiritual creation. God shut up the Holy Spirit, as you read in Genesis, the third chapter in verses twenty-two to twenty-four. But in one of the prophecies of the Old Testament, Joel 2 verse twenty-eight is a prophecy:
   "And it shall come to pass afterward [says God]... I will pour out my spirit upon ALL FLESH;" (Joel 2:28)
   Now there the spirit is referred to as something can be poured. So the spirit is not a ghost, a person. You don't pour a person, people. You just don't brethren. But God will pour out His spirit upon all flesh. And then God's world was started when Jesus said in Matthew 16:18;
   "I will build my church." (Matthew 16:18)
   Now it was started by one man, Jesus Christ, the second Adam one person. This world was started by one man, the physical Adam, and look how many billions of people it has grown into. The Kingdom of God is going to be bigger than any population that has ever inhabited this earth, ultimately. I want to read that again. I've read it so many times, but I just want you to know I am reading it from the Bible. Jesus said.
   "No man can come to me [it's impossible. No man can come to Christ], except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day." (John 6:44)
   Jesus Christ did not come to convert this world. He came to START THE WORLD TOMORROW! HE CAME TO START ANOTHER CIVILIZATION, and it had to start, not by converting the whole world, not by going out and getting everybody, but as the grain of mustard seed, so small. First Christ only, then there were twelve, then there were one hundred and twenty on the day of Pentecost. And now look at that day of Pentecost when the church started, the day that we are now celebrating.
   The first chapter of Acts tells about how Jesus was with His disciples for the forty days, until He ascended up to heaven after His resurrection, and teaching then about the Kingdom of God. And then we come to the second chapter of Acts, ten days after Jesus had ascended to heaven, and He said the Holy Spirit could not come unless He went to heaven.
   Now He had gone to heaven, and in the second chapter of {3} Acts we come to the day of Pentecost, and I want you to realize that Pentecost is called, when it was first instituted in Leviticus twenty-three, the Feast of Firstfruits, not the Feast of Pentecost. Pentecost is a New Testament, in fact, it is a Greek word, and the Old Testament wasn't written in Greek, it was written in Hebrew, nearly all, some of it in Aramaic.

New Testament Church Born

   "And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place." (Acts 2:1)
   You will notice that the church started out with those who were with ONE ACCORD. Do you know why some have dropped off and split from this church? They were not in one accord with us. Several that have gone out, that were our ministers, have tried to start little churches of their own, but they're not in one accord with one another or with us.
   Now I've said to the one that probably has the largest of these little splinter-off churches, I've said; "Show me where this church is not in accord with God and God's Word, and I will change and I'm sure the whole church will change with me." Would you change if I have to change brethren? If we are not in accord with this word, will you change and get in accord with it? I believe you would. If you wouldn't, you're on dangerous ground.
   I have had to be willing to admit I was wrong. I've had to be willing to change, but I have to have proof, and I have to know it is from the Word of God, and I've changed only under those conditions. "They were with one accord in one place." And the church has to be that way and we must all speak the same thing, but it must be the thing which Christ speaks and He is the Word.
   "And suddenly [I want you to notice 'suddenly.' Now this came like a crash all of a sudden] suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing of a mighty wind." (Acts 2:2)
   There was a mighty wind down in Houston, Texas during this past week, and I want to tell you that yesterday, the Sabbath, a number of our brethren in Texas had to work day and night, and they telephoned in to ask if it was alright. Mr Tkach came to me, he'd already... He is supposed to get my approval first, he didn't, he'd already told them the answer. But he waited to get my answer before he told me.
   You see, they were electricians and all the wires were down, and if anyone stepped on one of those electric wires they would be electrocuted and killed instantly. And lives, many thousands of lives were at stake and they had to have electricians working day and night, and some of our brethren are electricians. I said, "Well that's an ox in the ditch." I said, "If you have to rescue an ox that gets in the ditch, how much more if lives are at stake, do we have to do that." I said, "Yes, tell them to work this Sabbath."
   Now that's according to God's law. God says so.
   If God said otherwise, so would I, but God doesn't. So our hearts go out to those people, especially if they hit any of our brethren down there. Usually those things don't hit our brethren, do you ever notice that? At least not like the rest of the world. The unemployment situation has not hit the brethren of this church like it has the world or the country as a whole. It has hit us but not anywhere nearly so bad.
   "Suddenly there was a sound from heaven like a rushing mighty wind" (Acts 2:2). I don't know if you've ever been in a hurricane, I have. I was in a hurricane in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, and I took the only photographs that were taken. The Associated Press wanted them as soon as we got to New York. That was back in 1947, and I want to tell you that for many, many hours while we were in that hurricane, and the ship had to be always pointed right into the wind, otherwise it would have split the ship in two, the wind was so strong. And the roar of that rushing wind was terrific. It's a loud, loud roar
   "Like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting [so they were in a house and they were sitting there, not in the temple]. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues [now, well let me read another word or two] as of fire [the color of fire, looked like fire, but in the shape of tongues], and it sat upon the heads of each of them." (Acts 2:2-3 paraphrased)
   So they could see the Spirit of God coming like divided tongues, the shape of a tongue. And they could HEAR it, like a hurricane. Of course it wasn't as a tornado I guess, not a hurricane that hit Houston, Texas this week. But a rushing wind can make an awful noise, I can tell you. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and then they began to speak in other languages.
   And I won't go on with it but you will find, if you do, that the hundred and twenty who were there, were all speaking in these tongues, and there were thousands of others there, and these other thousands, each one heard them speaking in his language. In other words, there was a Greek there and he heard all one hundred and twenty speaking the Greek language. There was an a Parthian there whatever a Parthian is and he heard them speaking the Parthian language the same hundred and twenty. And people from other nations heard them speaking his language, all hundred and twenty.
   Now we have tongues speaking people today that call themselves Pentecostal. They're not Pentecostal, they just don't understand Pentecost. They don't speak in this kind of tongues. They don't SEE the spirit coming like tongues of fire sitting on them. They don't HEAR the rushing mighty wind, except they're yelling, "Praise the Lord, bless you Jesus, and glory hallelujah" and all that kind of thing. They roar and make a lot of noise out of their own throats, but it is not any roar that comes from heaven you can be sure.
   Well there was a lot of excitement that day, and finally Peter stood up and preached a marvelous sermon, the first spirit-filled sermon, a spirit-inspired sermon, by any of God's ministers since the founding of the church, or at any time. And when Peter had finished;
   "Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and [they] said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do [they were really moved clear down to their heart, they said, "What shall we do]? Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized..." (Acts 2:37-38)
   Now those are the two conditions, and 'be baptized' is only the outward performance of your faith and belief in Christ. So repentance and faith are the two required conditions to receiving the Holy Spirit of God, and you, let's see;
   "...be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise [now the Holy Spirit is a promise] the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as [to whom now is it promised?] as many as the Lord our God shall call." (Acts 2:38-39)
   It is not open to everybody. Jesus said, "No-one CAN come to me except the Father draws him. (John 6:44)" This is not the time of trying to save the world. The Holy Spirit was only given and promised to as many as the Lord our God shall call. Well God called all those, and there were three thousand baptized and converted that day. Well God had called them there.
   Now if someone says, "Well what if someone wants to be converted so bad and they pray so much and just pour out their hearts, and finally they do receive the Holy Spirit?" My only answer is, that if you find any such person, God does call them, otherwise they wouldn't be doing it. And I don't know anyone that does that and will really repent. To repent is to repent of breaking GOD'S LAW, and there is a lot more to repenting than people realize
   The churches haven't repented. They break God's law. They say the law is done away. They steal from God. Brethren, I want to write something of the history of the church, and I want to, some of these times, I want to, that's one of the next things I need to write. I need to write so many things, I can't get to all of them at once. I think you know how many articles, how many books, there are at least, let's see what is it, five, or six, or seven books I have written already, beside articles beyond more than I could remember or count now, I don't know how many articles I have written, it's more than I remember. But I need to do more writing even yet, and I'll soon be in my ninety-second year, and I hope God will give me life to live on to get some of this written.
   But one is the history of the church, and I want to show you that the true church of God has always maintained three things, and no other church on earth has retained those three things. And you can identify the true church. One is, they have kept God's commandments and God's law, and the test command is the fourth, because the world will admit you should not have other gods before Him. They will admit that you should not bow down to graven images and idols.
   They will admit you shouldn't take God's name in vain. They will admit you should honor your parents. They will admit that you shouldn't go out and kill people. They will admit that you shouldn't commit adultery. They will admit that you shouldn't lie, steal or covet. But they won't admit that the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy GOD! Oh no, they won't admit that.
   The second thing is that the true church has ALWAYS been kept in the name of GOD. We're the children of God and we're kept in the name of our Father. That's the family name. Read Jesus' prayer in the seventeenth chapter of John. He prayed that the true church would always be kept in that name. That's two things. Not many churches have both named the church of God and also kept the Sabbath. But there's a third thing.
   The true church has always put a difference between the holy and the profane. Now the Sabbath is holy to God. Sunday is profane and is not. Your tithe is holy to God, and you're a thief and robbing God if you don't give God the first tenth of all your increase. And that generally is, in most cases, is the gross income. Anyway the Bible word is "increase" and there are a few cases where we've had to interpret that to mean a little more than just gross income.
   But I wanted to read that, the day of Pentecost was started with that group, and the church consists of only those that God has called. It is not a volunteer group. It is a conscripted group. God calls those that He wants.

Church Is The Firstfruits

   Now the word "Pentecost" originally was called the Feast of Firstfruits and the church is the firstfruits, the first to be saved out of the world. Now the church consists of those that are called out, because Christ said, "Come out from among them of this world and be you separate from the world," says the Eternal (II Corinthians 6:17). We have to live as Christ did. He set the example. He was in this world. Now He wasn't a freak. They couldn't tell Him apart from other people, or other Jews of the day.
   Why would they have paid... oh, I can't ever remember names... Judas, thirty pieces of silver to point Him out and identify which one was Christ. He would often be in a group and they tried to get Him and He would just dart in among the crowd. And then the people in the crowd didn't know who He was, as long as He was weaving His way out of and away from the crowd, and He got out and away from them.
   He didn't look different from anybody else, but He lived a different way of life. He had a different attitude toward God and toward people. He prayed a lot more to God than we do. He was closer to God the Father at all times. He had a different attitude toward other people. He had the kind of attitude that we ought to have, that we should have.
   But now, I want you to notice that this is the Feast of Firstfruits and the church is the firstfruits. Only those that God selects and CALLS. Brethren, we have never REALIZED that, we've always supposed somehow, the Protestant idea that God is trying to save EVERYBODY. HE IS NOT! He is calling some to be TRAINED. We're going to be priests and kings and ruling over and teaching others in the Kingdom of God. When Satan is put away and Christ comes to rule, supernaturally, it will be a different world.
   We're called out to be trained for that time. This is another world, started in the church. We have to be IN the world, but not of the world. We have to go to the world. The Gospel is merely an announcement of the coming Kingdom of God, and the Kingdom of God is the FAMILY of God RULING the world. It's the new civilization.
   It's a family of God beings, and ultimately, everyone left alive on earth, by a hundred years after the end of the millennium, every human being alive on the earth will be a God being, and there won't be any human beings left. And there won't be any Satan, or any devils or demons on the earth. There may be angels here, and angels will be servants, and here to serve and help. And we will be servants too, ourselves, and we'll be serving others to try to help them and to teach them and help them find the right way of life and the way of peace, the way of great massive production. The way of blessing and happiness and peace. That's what we have to learn.
   Now Pentecost means the Feast of the Firstfruits and that's what we are. Now I want you to notice, for example, Romans 8:21. Let me just turn to a few scriptures real quickly here, Romans eight and verse twenty-one.
   "Because the creation itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation groans and travaileth in pain together until now [that is for the actual birth of the children of God when we shall be born. A lot of people think they're already born again, and of course they don't know what they're talking about]. And not only they but ourselves only, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit [we're the first to receive the Spirit of God, and it's still shut off from the rest of the world], even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the [it says here] adoption..." [but it means son-ship, being born as a son of God] (Romans 8:22-23)
   Now let me see, next first Corinthians fifteen and verse twenty and verse twenty-three. I Corinthians fifteen, verse twenty:
   "But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept [He's the first of the firstfruits... and verse twenty-three]. But every man in his own order:...as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive [by a resurrection]. But every man in his own order Christ the firstfruits; then they which are Christ's at his coming." (I Corinthians 15:22-23 paraphrased)
   Then will be the others later, but we are the firstfruits next to Christ and He was the firstfruits even of the church to be resurrected. And later, He was the firstborn of many brethren. {4}
   Now Ephesians 1:11-12: " [Christ]...In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will: That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first [put our] trust in Christ." (Ephesians 1:11-12)
   We're the ones who first put our trust in Christ. We are the firstfruits, and today is the Feast of Firstfruits, meaning that the rest in the world are not converted yet and God isn't trying to convert them now.
   Now next, James 1:18:
   "Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures." (James 1:18)
   We're the first to be brought into the Family of God, only begotten now, but to be born into the Family of God later. Now next, Revelation 14. Revelation 14 and verse one:
   "And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Zion, and with him [the] an hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father's name written in their foreheads." (Revelation 14:1)
   Now wait a minute, I think there's more than that. Yes, and then verse four. That's a hundred and forty-four thousand, and notice they were kept in the Father's name. And now verse four.
   "These are they which were not defiled with women [that is other churches, and churches of Satan]; for these are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb [that is Christ] withersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and the Lamb." (Revelation 14:4)
   We are the first to be saved and the others are not being converted now, and God is not trying to convert others now.

Called And Chosen By God

   Now, as you read in Revelation 3 and verse twenty-one, I won't turn to that, it is so difficult for me to read, even with a magnifying glass, but you've all read it and I've read this hundreds of times I think. Revelation 3:21; if we overcome Christ will grant that we sit with Him on His throne in the Kingdom of God, we, the firstfruits, if we overcome even as He overcame, and is set down now with God on God's throne in heaven. (Revelation 3:21)
   And Revelation 2:26-27: the overcomers will be given power over the nations and shall rule the nations, with and under Christ, with a rod of iron in the Kingdom of God, when God does try to save the world (Revelation 2:26-27). He's not trying to save the world now.
   Now there is one other thing that I want. I've said that the called only, are converted now, that no man can come to Christ. I think some of you have not believed that. Alright now, listen to a few scriptures. I'll just read parts of them off in a hurry.
   Acts 2:39, I read it a while ago, that as many as are far off, "...even as many as the Lord our God shall call." (Acts 2:39) The promise of the Holy Spirit.
   Romans 8:28 it talks about "to... the called." Paul is addressing and things that are promised to the called. It's only the called that are in the church now.
   I Corinthians 1:9: If you look this up and take the whole context in every case, you will see it's talking about only part are called now, the rest of the world is not.
   I Corinthians 1, let's see, looks like I've got 09, {5} it wouldn't be that. Even with a magnifying glass I can't read my own writing: "by whom you were called;" (I Corinthians 1:9) You in the church.
   And I Corinthians, now in verse 22 and 24; "But unto them which are called... [Verse 26] not many mighty are called, or the great of this world." (I Corinthians 1:24-26 paraphrased)
   And I Corinthians 7:18 and also 7:20; "...any man called being circumcised," (I Corinthians 7:18) Called, and therefore converted and into the church.
   Galatians 1:6 "...from him that called you." (Galatians 1:6)
   And Ephesians 4:1 "...vocation wherewith you are called." (Ephesians 4:1)
   And Ephesians 4:4 "...one hope of your calling" (Ephesians 4:4)
   And Colossians 3:15 "...called in one body." (Colossians 3:15)
   And in I Timothy 6:12 "...whereunto you are called." (I Timothy 6:12 paraphrased)
   Hebrews 9:15.."they which are called... receive" (Hebrews 9:15) Well, receive the Spirit of God, and so on, I haven't read the rest of it right there.
   In I Peter {6} 2:9 "...chosen...a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar people... [but it's those that are called] that...who hath called you..." (I Peter 2:9) And it goes on. But we are a chosen people who have been called.
   And in verse 21, I Peter 2 "...hereunto were you called." (I Peter 2:21)
   And I Peter 3:9 "...thereunto called [to] inherit..." (I Peter 3:9)Called why? Not just for personal salvation, but to develop God's character, to be born into the God Family that through us the millions and the billions later, may be saved and later converted.
   Now see Romans 11: They that were called... let's see, oh, they, the called... oh through their mercy Judah may also obtain mercy or something like that, I didn't get but part of it there. (Romans 11:30 paraphrased)
   Now there are many more I have here, I John 3:1; we're called the called the sons of God.
   Matthew 20:16; "...many are called, but few are chosen." (Matthew 20:16 paraphrased)
   Then the election. The word "elect" and the "election" they mean the same thing that God has called and are called the elect.
   And then the chosen. "...I have chosen you twelve...[Jesus said ]" (John 6:70)
   In Acts 9:15 Paul "...a chosen vessel..." (Acts 9:15)
   Revelation 17:14 "...they... with him are called and chosen..." (Revelation 17:14)
   I Corinthians 1:27 "God has called the weak of this world".(I Corinthians 1:27 paraphrased) God calls us.
   II Thessalonians 2:13 "God has from the beginning..." [Let's see, Oh God has called the weak of the world, and II Thessalonians 2:13] "God hath from the beginning... [I guess it should be called] called you to salvation" (II Thessalonians 2:13) Or chosen you to salvation. I guess the word chosen is used there.
   And James 2:5 "God has chosen the poor... to be heirs of the kingdom." (James 2:5 paraphrased)
   Well I just had scribbled some of that. Anyway, I just wanted to show you, most people don't realize how many places in the New Testament, if you go through, it shows that the people that are converted now have been called by God, and they didn't volunteer. Brethren, God has called you. He has chosen you out from among very many others.

Four Main Hurdles

   Now in closing, I haven't looked at the time, I don't know how we are doing, but we're right on time. I know, so many times I come out and take up the whole time. And today I don't have the whole time because we had a sermonette and all that kind of thing, so I was afraid maybe I was running over, I hadn't watched the time. I wanted to get the message to you anyway.
   Don't forget, there are four hurdles that apply to us. And don't forget that what I just read to you from the second and third chapters of Revelation, how we are going to rule with Christ in His kingdom, apply only to those called at this time now. Those scriptures do not apply to those that will be saved during the Millennium when Satan will not even be around. Brethren, that shows that there is all the more responsibility on us, so much more than we perhaps have ever realized.
   Now remember this, there are four main hurdles to our salvation and coming to the place where we can rule with Christ in the kingdom, or in the world tomorrow, in the new civilization in the new world, God's world. We're being trained now to raise up and rule in God's world.
   The first is to repent. The second is to believe, and not only to believe in Christ and accept Christ as Savior, but to believe what Christ says. And Christ is the Word and the whole Bible is His word in writing. So you must believe what God says and what the Bible says.
   Third, you must grow in grace and in spiritual knowledge, the knowledge of Christ. If you're not growing in your understanding of the Bible, and in character, and in the way you live, more and more like Christ and more and more as we find in the Bible, we should live. Now think of all of the chapters like the fruits of the Spirit and the fruits of the flesh or this and that. I can't take time for those things today. Some of that I think is on one of the sermons this morning. All of those things have to do with our living and our growing. But we have to grow.
   And finally we have to endure and stay with it clear to the end. I think someone asked the question maybe that was yesterday, "What do we mean, endure to the end?" "Well," I said, as I heard that said only I was home looking at it on my television set, which is focused right on this desk, and if I'm not here I am at least listening in, and looking in. And I said, "Well that means the end of this life or the kingdom of God and the coming of Christ, whichever comes first."
   It's like some of the guarantees on an automobile, it's a case of whichever comes first, and I thought of it in that light. But we must believe, we must all speak the same thing. Now there was a great deal brought out in the sermon this morning about togetherness and how they were all of one accord. That's the trouble, these ministers who have split off and formed their own little groups, they are not in one accord with us.
   I have said, if we are not in accord with the Bible, if we are not in accord with Christ and His teaching, show us, and we'll change. And brethren I believe you'll change with me if someone can show me. I have that much confidence in you too. But no-one has shown you and no-one has shown me where we are not in accord.
   Now, I won't say that we are one hundred percent. We don't know all of it yet, we grow in knowledge. Brethren, if you remember, in the last two years, you know how much new knowledge God has revealed that I have been revealing to you? God reveals it to me almost every time I speak to you, I reveal a few little new bits of knowledge and truth that you didn't know and understand before. And some of the ministers have come to me and mentioned that. We have to grow.
   I never forget the man that was 84 years old when I was preaching before... when this church was being founded back in the year of 1934. And he was 84 years old, and every night he would say to me after the sermon, "Well I learned something new tonight." And me, at that time, let's see, what was I, about 50 something at that time, and I felt that was wonderful. A man 84 years old and still learning.
   Well that man became an elder in this church, later, but at that time he was in the church of Christ, but he kept learning every night and later he came into this church and was made an elder, in the original church up at Eugene, Oregon. And now, I am just a matter of weeks from being 91 and I'm still learning. Are you? Brethren, are you still learning?
   We have to grow in grace and knowledge and continue to learn more. But more than that we have to be doers of the word and not hearers only. We have to put it into practice. We have to develop in character more and more like Christ, and not one of us, yet, is like Christ, maybe partially. I hope we are, I hope we all are partly like Christ, but not one of us is yet wholly like Christ. We all have a long way yet to go, so let's keep on, let's remember we have to endure to the end. And we must be in one accord. We must all speak the same thing, it must be the thing that God reveals in His word through Christ. And as long as we do that He will continue to bless and prosper this church.
   Now this morning you heard a report on the growth of this church, and just since this year began. And here only about, what, about a third of the year has passed us already, and we're having the biggest growth ever. The Plain Truth is growing, the gospel is going out to more and more people.
   To those of you, let me just say, if you didn't hear the telecast this morning, I hope you can hear it tonight. Those of you who would like to hear the greatest pianist in the world, and I don't think that's been made plain from here, but Vladimir Horowitz is... his piano, he always plays on his own piano. And he takes his own piano, and he's on the way to Japan now, and he's going to be playing over there, but his own piano will go with him. And, well we have the two finest pianos in all the United States, yet he plays his own piano.
   But since Maestro Rubinstein died just very recently, without question, Vladimir Horowitz now is the greatest living pianist. Now between him and Maestro Rubinstein there were differences, and some preferred one and some preferred the other. I will say though, that as a technician, and the brilliancy of what he can do and how he can play on the piano, the delicacy of the touch, well, some of the things that Mr. Horowitz, Maestro Horowitz does, are almost beyond belief.
   And those of you who would like to hear it, now the house is sold out here, and the seats you are sitting in, the people that will sit in it tonight have all paid $75.00 for that seat. But Mr. Horowitz has very graciously consented that we can plug it in on the screen, and you will see and hear him really live on the screen over there, those of you who want to, at, I believe the time is 8:30 tonight.
   But also from 8:30 to 9:00 is the telecast, and those of you missed this morning you should not miss it tonight.... Even if I did do it, you'll pardon my saying that. But really, brethren, there isn't any other voice carrying the message like that around to the world. And it's the message that was delivered in the Philippine Islands that'll be on tonight. So one or the other, either Mr. Horowitz or hear me, one or the other please, tonight. So until next time, I'll bow out now.

{1} Footnote: Mr Armstrong stumbled over his words here and said:...the feast of Tab...eh, of Pente, eh during the feast of Passover I mean, ah huh, pretty soon I'll get it correct if you just be patient with me a minute

{2} Footnote: Mr Armstrong mistakenly said Genesis here, but quotes from John 1:1

{3} Footnote: Mr Armstrong mistakenly said Genesis here, but meant Acts.

{4} Footnote: Mr Armstrong lost his place and said: as you also... now let me see, No, that's in another scripture

{5} Footnote: Mr Armstrong was right, it was the correct verse, I Corinthians 1:9

(6) Footnote: Mr Armstrong said I Peter 3 but quoted from I Peter 2.

Sermon Date: May 22, 1983
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