QUESTION: "I noticed the cover and the center-fold spread of the March Good News, and my reaction was 'there goes the salesman of God.' I don't think it proper to use the caption 'And You Shall Be Brought Before Kings,' because the original context was directed to incidents involving saints being brought into courts to testify for the reason of their faith when it is, or seems to be, contrary to government (civil edicts)."
ANSWER: The practice of taking a phrase or sentence from the Bible or other literature for use as a "catchy" title is common practice in the world of literature and journalism.
The caption on the cover of the March Good News was simply a title for the article in "Update" concerning Mr. Armstrong's visits to world leaders. It was not meant to imply fulfillment of the specific scripture (Matt. 10:16-18) which the context is describing (God's servants going before. kings in unfavorable circumstances ).
Mr. Armstrong is being brought before kings and world leaders in the service of the gospel! It may well be that in the future, such visits could result in rejection and persecution. At the present time, however, God has granted Mr. Armstrong great favor in the sight of the leaders with whom he is acquainted.
In the past, the Holy Spirit has always led God's servants to communicate His message directly to the leaders of nations. The Apostle Paul was brought before kings• in the service of the gospel: "... He is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles [nations other than Israel], and kings, and the children of Israel" (Acts 9:15). It appears that the living Christ is using Mr. Armstrong in much the same way.
Q: "In the January 1974 GN, it seems there is a small error in the otherwise superb article by Raymond F. McNair on 'The Resurrection in the Old Testament.' Near the top of page 21 it says: 'The word "resurrect" literally means "to stand again from below" — "re" (again); "sur" (below); "rect" (to stand).
"Should this not be: 're' (again); 'sur' (above); 'rect' (straight)? See the use of 'sur' in surface, surcharge, survive; and the use of 'rect' in rectangle, linea recta, rectify."
Drumbo, Ontario, Canada
A: You are correct. Webster's Third New International Dictionary agrees with your definitions of the prefixes "re," "sur," and "rect." The primary definition of the word "resurrect" itself is "to raise from the dead: restore to life."
In the Arndt-Gingrich Greek Lexicon, the Greek word translated "resurrection" is anastasis, which means to "rise" or to be "resurrected" from the dead. In Hebrews 11:35 it is translated, "Women received their dead raised to life again...." This translation tends to clarify the meaning of the original Greek term. To be "raised to life again" after having once experienced death is to be resurrected. Raised has to do with being elevated out of the grave.
Q: "I would like to submit a very important question to your magazine. Do you know where God originated from?"
A: As human beings we usually view things purely from a physical basis alone. We think of everything as having an origin. And, on a strictly physical basis, that's true.
However, God Almighty is a spirit (John 4:24). And a spirit being is not bound by laws of time and space. All physical things have a beginning and an ending, but spiritual things are eternal (II Cor. 4:18).
God Almighty inhabits eternity (Isa. 57:15). He has no origin. He was "without father, without mother, without descent, having neither beginning of days, nor end of life..." (Heb. 7:3).
The very Hebrew name for "Lord" in the Old Testament — YHWH — means "Eternal," or the God that has always, and will always, exist.
These concepts are explained in greater detail in our free reprint article, "Has God Eternally Existed?" It is available upon your request.
Q: "Ever since I was a little girl, I've heard that we all have guardian angels. Now that I read your magazines, I take second thoughts on a lot of things. Is there any truth to the guardian angel bit?"
Pine Hill, New Jersey
A: The guardian angel concept probably originates from the following scripture: "Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones [newly converted Christians]; for I say unto you, That in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven" (Matt. 18:10).
This verse does definitely show, as do other scriptures, that all true Christians have God's angels watching over them. But whether each individual has a personalized guardian angel (or angels) is purely an academic question. The Bible simply isn't that technically specific on this point.
The important thing to remember is that God does dispatch His righteous angels to oversee and protect those who obey Him (Ps. 34:7; Heb. 1:13, 14).
As a cautionary note, we would not encourage people to attempt to become familiar with some personal "pet" angel. Rather, allow God to provide the invisible protection of His angelic host in His own way.