Born: July 31, 1892
Died: January 16, 1986
Member Since: 1928
Herbert W. Armstrong founded the Worldwide Church of God in the late 1930s, as well as Ambassador College in 1946, and was an early pioneer of radio and tele-evangelism, originally taking to the airwaves in the 1930s from Eugene, Oregon.
Well, greetings again, brethren. I'm just trying to think how long it had been since I had been here. It seemed to me like I am becoming almost an every week or almost every Sabbath speaker over here. But they are trying to tell me it's been a year since I had been here. I think it was last May, though, if I'm not mistaken. I believe I did speak then. I was in London last May, and I believe that is the time that I did speak to you last. Anyway, I'm happy to be back here with you once again. Getting Back on Track Avoid those Causing Division Clearing Up Understanding WANTING TO UNDERSTAND Jesus, The Living Word Understanding ORIGINS THE PRE-EXISTENCE OF GOD God's manner of living The Way, or law, of God Creation of Angels GOVERNING THE MATERIAL Universe BEAUTY AND VANITY Doing Your Own Thing Creation of Man Temporary Life Only Rejecting Revelation Satan's World Today At-One-Ment The Church, Start of God's World Restoring THE Government of God Called to be Teachers The Second Coming of Christ Judgement Now on Us The Marriage Supper The New Covenant TIMES OF JUDGMENT At the End of the Millennium Rebuilding the Universe
Now the holiday season for this year of God's holy days is over, and reports that I've had from everywhere in the world is that this truly was the greatest Feast of Tabernacles that we've ever held. I think the year before was up to that time, and I think it was even more so this time.
You know if in… Well, take a football team. You have a different kind of football over here than we do. As a matter of fact, American football is almost localized American football, whereas soccer is more or less a worldwide football. But nevertheless, if one member of the team becomes sour and bitter and in discord, that team is going to begin to lose games. It is not going to succeed.
Two cannot walk together except they be agreed. And if, for example, you can't drive… What is it? A horse and a mule? It's certain animals. They won't go along together. One will pull in one direction, and one will go off in another direction. They won't serve you. They won't get anywhere together. Two cannot walk together except they be agreed.
All right, you take three or four. If one among them is in disharmony, you have trouble. And, as I say, on a team—whatever size team you have (Some teams, like basketball, have 5 playing at a time; American baseball, it's 9; football is 11.)—different numbers depending on the type of game; but, if just one member turns sour, you got trouble.
There are just two ways we can avoid them. One is if we all get out. We leave the Church and leave them in. The other is if we put them out. And I think we'd rather prefer just to put them out; because, if they are going to prefer sin, we put sin out of our lives. That's what we begin learning in the first festivals, the beginning of the year—first the Passover, then the Days of Unleavened Bread—that teach us to put sin out of our lives. And we have to put sin or sinful people, or discontented people that are causing trouble, out of the Church.
Now that doesn't mean something that is wrong. We used to feel, well, we must show love; and to show love we must keep those discontented people among us. Then you have trouble. And that is not love. It is not love! The way we show love is to let them know that they're wrong, and they cannot have fellowship with those of us that want to go the way of God and the way of Christ.
I know that in Pasadena there was one sermonette on the period right after the Millennium of the 1000-year reign with Christ, when Satan is loosed for a little while out of his prison; and he goes forth to deceive the nations. Afterward, one of the members asked me, "Well now, I can't quite understand it. Here we've had a Millennium. Satan has been chained. The earth has been full of the knowledge of the Lord. as full as the ocean beds are covered with water. And the Law of God has gone forth to all the world from Jerusalem. And how can Satan go up and deceive people again? And what kind of people are they? Are they mortal or immortal?"
A lot of questions came to mind. So some of those little things I think we might clear up. And I have to think that in the average church they have a certain form and ceremony. But really—when it comes down to life, and to religion, to church, why should there be a Church, why do they come to church, why do they attend Church services—the truth of it is that most of them don't know. Ever since they were little babies, they've grown up. They've probably been taken to church. They know that there are churches—that the good people are supposed to go to church, at least they suppose so. They have certain ceremonies.
And there must be some kind of a being, or a god, or a something that looks down. He's going to hurt you, and curse you, and cause you all kinds of trouble if you don't please him, do what he wants you to do. They don't know why; but he's kind of an angry god, apparently. They don't understand it. They don't know why we are alive. They don't know why humans are on earth. They don't know where we are going. They don't know why there should be a Church. What's its purpose? What's its function?
I use to, when we would get on those little streetcars, I'd get up on the front seat and watch old Bill, the motorman, run that car. And, you know, I got very ambitious. I knew right then (I was only 5 years old.) what I wanted to be when I grew up. I was going to be a streetcar motorman. But my father had other ideas. He said that I was sure to be a Philadelphia lawyer. I was always asking what he called "so many Tom-fool questions". He got so tired of answering them he said I would become a Philadelphia lawyer when I grew up.
Well, I always wanted to know "Why?" And I wanted to know "How?" I was always asking questions like that. I wanted to understand. I always craved understanding.
Now, when I grew up, I changed my mind. I… A man that I worked for on a summer vacation aroused ambition within me when I was 16 years of age. I think that prior to age 16, most boys and most girls think only about one thing. Their minds are pretty much on one thing. It's a little 3-letter word, F - U - N. Fun! That's about all they think about. At age 16, a man showed confidence in me and told me that I was going to really amount to something someday. I was going to make my mark in the world, and I was going to become something important, and I could do big things. I said, "Well, can I?" And I got to wondering; and I began to believe that maybe I could do something, someday.
Ambition began to come into me. Well, I knew this much about ambition: It was desire to accomplish something, backed up by the purpose and the will to work hard enough to accomplish that desire. And I had ambition; and I was willing to work for it, though I didn't know what I was going to do yet.
Then, at age 18, I saw a book in the public library. I was beginning to look into the library and study things in the philosophy department and business administration section of the library and things of that sort, in addition to things I was getting in high school.
I found a book on choosing a vocation; and, so I took that book out. It put me through a sort of self-study course, a self-analysis analyzing one's own self of whatever aptitudes you might have; any talents, if any; your faults, your weakness; your likes, the things you like to do; and the things you detested and didn't like to do at all. And then it went through all the various professions and occupations to see where you would fit and where you belong (where you could succeed in life), and what type of occupation or profession you should pursue to avoid fitting the proverbial square peg in the round hole, as it were. And I seemed to fit in the advertising profession.
I didn't know it at that time, but the advertising profession in magazines and newspapers (mostly magazines) was only preparing me for what God really was going to call me to do. I don't know that God had made any analysis on me, or anything of the kind. But, for some reason or other, He decided He was going to make me willing to bend to His will and really believe what He says. But that was to come a lot later.
Now you notice in the film, "The History of the Church," how right after my marriage (That took place way back in 1917, when I was 25 years of age.) that my wife had a dream that was so intense and so different that she didn't know whether it was really a dream or a vision. Anyway, I won't go into the detail of that now this afternoon; but it was an angel coming down and putting his arm around both of us, to her very great surprise because I had lost all interest in church after 18 years of age.
I had been taken to one of the Protestant churches that started and originated over here in England and then moved to the United States. Like most churches, I didn't know that there was any purpose of the Church. I don't think anybody in it did. They had their ceremonies, such as it was, and a sermon was… Well, we just heard a good sermon in the sermonette. We just call that a sermonette here, and that's about the size of sermons that you'd ever hear in one of the Protestant churches.
But so far as understanding the Bible and going into the Bible, they just don't do that. The truth is they don't really BELIEVE the Bible, because the Bible is God speaking. Christ is the Word of God, and the Bible is the same Word of God in writing.
He is the Word of God in person. The Bible is the same Word of God, identically. Jesus is the real Author of the Word of God. This is what He said. This is what He taught the apostles, what He taught the ancient prophets; and they wrote it down, and it has been preserved.
The churches have gotten away from it, and they don't believe it. They have followed their own traditions, and their traditions have changed through the years. Their beliefs have changed. They have dropped many things that the early Church had 1950 years ago or more. They don't realize how much they have changed. They've just changed from generation to generation.
You show them the Bible, and they hold it in contempt. They don't believe it. They claim they do, but they don't. They believe in God; but they don't believe God, because Christ is the Spokesman for God. Now I say, two cannot walk together lest they be agreed. But God and Christ are 100% in agreement. Jesus is the Word, but He spoke only what the Father told Him to speak—absolute harmony, and agreement.
Now there is some reason why we have kept these festivals through this year. There's some reason why we have the Church. And today I want to start. I want to cover a lot of ground this afternoon. I'm going to hurry right through. I am not going to spend much time on any one scripture. We should know the scriptures in this Church. But I want to put it all together, once again. I think we need to have it altogether to understand.
And that's the way it is. We come into this world now, in this Twentieth Century. And unless we know what was going on back in say the 10th century (and back in the 1st century, and way back before these centuries began, before Christ, and way back in the beginning, and what formed the world, and how the world came to be) we just cannot understand. And that's why the world is without understanding. It doesn't get…
The people in the world have been born into this world. They've grown up. They see what is about them, and what the people think and believe; and all the others think and believe what they have been taught and told from the time they were little children; and they don't know what led up to the present time—the present kind of customs, the way people are living today, what they are doing. They never stop to think, "Why are people on the earth?" "How did we come to be here?"
Now the scientists are trying to explain God away. So they evolved evolution, a theory that postulates that creation came here without any Creator. In other words, evolution. Or EVILution, I guess you could pronounce it over here. And it is evil, although it would be spelled E-V-O-L (not E-V-I-L). Nevertheless, it is evil. And it is NOT true, and I have proved that. It is the atheist's explanation of the presence of a creation without any Creator who thought it out, planned it, designed it, and then produced it.
It's like saying that the watch I have here didn't have any watchmaker. No one thought it out; no one planned it; no one designed it. It just, the metals in it, came out of the ground. The gold and the other metals, they put themselves together. They formed themselves into the shape they are, put themselves together; and they got themselves started to running, but there was no thought back of it. There was no one that designed it, no person who made it. And you say, "Well, if I say that, then I'm crazy."
But that's what the evolutionists are saying about creation, and you can't get around it. I know that's an old argument and they say, "Oh well, that argument was laughed out of school a long time ago." Well, that's the way they get around it. They never have been able to answer it, however.
Now the holy days begin with Christ and His sacrifice, and they picture the spiritual creation from that point on. The holy days don't begin back in Genesis with the first Adam. They begin with Christ and His sacrifice. The holy days were given to the Church; but they were given to first the Church in the wilderness back in days of Moses, called "the congregation of Israel" at that time. Congregation means the same thing as Church. Both come from the same root Hebrew word, any way.
To understand, we have to go clear back to prehistory. And I am going to go over it very rapidly and give you an overview of the purpose back of it all, and the Master Plan for accomplishing that purpose. We need to always keep that in mind. The trouble is, we forget that. And if we'd keep it in mind and see everything today in the light of what has gone on before, then we can begin to understand and get it in its right perspective, in the right place.
God and the Word preexisted before anything else. There was no other light. There was no earth, no sun and moon, no stars, no matter, and no living creatures; no living beings except just two. There was God and the Word. Now the Word was also God; and you find it in John 1, the first 4 verses of the first chapter of John in the New Testament. But, in the 14th verse, you find the Word was made flesh and became Jesus Christ.
Now before He was born as Jesus Christ, He was just the Word; and in Greek it is Logos, meaning Spokesman or Word. And the Word was God, and the Word was with God. They were together. And the Word made all things. All things were made and created by Him. And He LIVED. In Him was LIFE. He lived, and God lived.
Now we have two Beings, and They were alive. If They were alive, if They lived, They had to be doing something. They had to be moving. And They had supreme minds; and They could think, and plan, and design. Now why did They live? They had supreme mind. They had a purpose. The purpose, ultimately, was to create and reproduce Themselves; but to do that they had to create certain other things first. vThey were going to create, for example, countless planets (like our earth) and suns (like our sun). And many of the stars we see are suns; and many of them, they look like tiny stars to us that you can just barely see. But that's because they are so far away that they look small. The farther away they are the smaller they seem to human eyesight. And some of them are, they say, thousands or millions of times larger even than our sun; and our sun is so much larger than this earth that your mind doesn't quite comprehend it.
And They were going to reproduce themselves into BILLIONS of God Beings born of Them. Now the average person going to a church never heard that, doesn't know anything about it. That is the great purpose back of it all. So now let's go through it a little bit.
Now the Word became flesh and became Jesus Christ. God the Father said, "You are My beloved Son." BELOVED Son. He LOVED His Son. And Jesus showed He LOVED the Father, and obeyed God. They lived the way, then, of LOVE.
Jesus said He had never spoken anything except but for what the Father told him. Now two can't walk together except they be agreed. Well, They agreed 100% because all that Jesus ever said was what the Father told Him to. So They were in complete harmony and agreement. There was cooperation and agreement.
But two can't walk together except one is the leader. That is another principle. A husband and wife, for example, join together and become one family; but one of those two is going to be the leader. Now God made the HUSBAND the leader; but most husbands today abdicate their position. They just don't have leadership. They give it up; and so the wife has to pick it up and take the lead, and that is contrary to God's nature and what God intended.
Many a young woman today says, "I don't want anything in my marriage ceremony where I promise to obey. I am not going to obey. We are going to have a 50-50 marriage. No one is going to the boss." Well, let me tell you that means that she is going to wear the pants and be the boss, every time. There is no such thing as a 50-50 marriage. ONE is the leader, every time!
I have a daughter who says, "We have a 50-50 marriage." Oh yeah? Well, I know—and her children, who are my grandchildren, will tell you—that mom is the boss. Yes, that's true! By the way, they were with me the last time I spoke over here, too, I believe. Anyway, it's always that way. Whether you believe it or not, or realize it or not, it is that way. But there had to be leadership.
A law is merely a rule of human conduct, of human performance in relation to others. A law, then, is merely a rule, laying down the rules of conduct between minds. Now a law then, God's Law, is between God and man and between man and man. The Law of God is love, because that's the WAY of life that God and Christ lived. It's a way of living. It's the rule of living; and it's first toward God, and then toward neighbor.
The trouble is, in this world, what little bit of law they have is man toward man and man toward his human neighbor; but they leave God out of it entirely. They never think about the fact they have to have a relationship with God; and they do have, one way or the other. And most of them are ignoring God altogether, and God is not in their lives. He just does not enter into their consciousness at all. Most people will say, "Oh, yes, I believe in God." But they hardly ever think about the person they call God. It's just once in a while. God isn't really a part of their thinking, their everyday life.
Well, God and the Word lived. And They lived the way of love, and of mutual agreement entirely, and understanding. One was the leader. Now when one is in command as the leader, then you have government. That IS government. Government is merely an organized system of one administering law, which is a way of living. That's what a government is!
A government can form a city; you have a city government. Over here you have shires, and we have states in the United States, and they have provinces in Canada, and so it goes. And each one has their own system of laws, and law enforcement. We have governors of states, and you have your system over here. We call that government. It's only an administration of the rules of living, one with his neighbor. Now the overall thing is the relationship of man with God.
An angel is not composed of matter, but of spirit. Our human eyes cannot see spirit. There's nothing about spirit we can see. Spirit doesn't vibrate and make sounds and noises, so we can't hear spirit. You can't taste spirit; you can't smell spirit; you can't feel spirit. The only way you have any knowledge is just by the things that come into your brain through the senses of sight, or feeling, or hearing, or tasting, or smelling. So you don't know anything about spirit unless God reveals it.
All I know about spirit is what God reveals, and He reveals it in the Bible. And most people don't believe the Bible anyway, so they don't know anything about spirit. Scientists don't believe there is any such thing as spirit. They can't see it. They don't believe the Bible, so they just say there isn't any such thing. And yet spirit beings are running this world that we live in, and running their lives; and even scientists don't understand what is going on in their own lives.
Well, God first created angels; and angels are other spirit beings. And they were just out in space, out in space. Then after that, after God created angels, next He created the entire universe and this earth. Now in the first chapter of Genesis and in the second chapter of Genesis, if you go back and scrutinize it really carefully, you will see that it says plainly in both places that the earth and the entire universe were created at the same time.
This earth was created the same time the whole universe was. I don't mean it means this same instant or the same… It uses the expression "day" there, but a day has two meanings. It is used two ways in the Bible. One is a time, a general period of time; and the other is a specific 24-hour day. It's not speaking of a 24-hour day in that case, but of the same general time.
Now the earth has from its center something we call gravity that pulls everything down to it, so that we are on the surface. You know, people on the other side of the earth, just exactly through the earth (the other side from us), what seems "up" to us would be "down" down there because up to them is going just the opposite direction. But the earth pulls them up to it, or pulls us down to it, whichever. Now you can get all confused as you try to work out that in your mind, so I'm not going into that.
But on this earth God already had government. And God was the head of the government, and He ruled over even Christ; and then Christ was given rule over the angels. And They placed a super archangel... There were three types of angels. There are ordinary angels. They don't have wings. Then there were seraphs. They are a little higher species or type of angels. They do have wings. The most, the highest, most intelligent of all, the most powerful, are cherubs. Only three of them are mentioned in the Bible—Michael, and Gabriel, and Lucifer; and they do have wings also. Two of them had wings that overspread over the very throne of God in heaven. One of them, Lucifer, was put on this earth. Now he was so brilliantly bright and beautiful that it went to his head. And here he was on the earth, and he was put in charge of the government of God over the angels.
Now remember, the government of God was administered by laws. You have to have law as a foundation and basis of every government. In the United States the basis is the Constitution of the United States. That's the foundation and basis of all laws. Any law contrary to the Constitution will be knocked out and cannot be called a law. And you have your basic Constitution in England. Every country does.
Vanity grips a lot of women. That's why we've had a lot in the last two years to say about women wearing makeup. If there weren't any looking glasses, they wouldn't think about makeup anyhow. But a woman looks into it and thinks, "How beautiful I am. I want to make myself more beautiful." You know, all she does is put a lot of dirt on her face and thinks that makes her more beautiful. She doesn't think of it that way. And why doesn't she think of that way? She thinks of it in the way she was brought up from a little girl, and the way other women do; and the women of this world do it that way. And we are [creatures of habit] of following other people, and we do what they do. We don't know half the time WHY we do what we do! And that's the way it is. But let's get back to God and God's revelation, and get some sense into our heads.
Now this Satan was filled with vanity, and vanity exalts itself; and he began to exalt himself above God. And so he said, "I will exalt my throne above God. I will ascend; I will go up and knock God off His throne." Now it might have taken him millions of years, we don't know, to convince the angels under him that competition against God would be better than obedience to God—that competition, and vanity, and thinking that you are so great that you want to be greater than anybody, and thinking of what YOU want to do instead of what you are told to do, and organizing them into an army. And so the first invasion to try to have a coup of government and take over the throne of God and knock God off His throne occurred before a first human being had been created.
So they swooped up to heaven to knock God off the throne—all those angels and this super archangel, Lucifer; and they were cast back down to the earth. Now their minds became perverted. They turned against God's way of love, and they turned to the opposite way of love of only for self. Love is outgoing. Love is toward God. And love is toward neighbor and other people, and concern for their good and their welfare. Now Lucifer became concerned only about his own good and his own welfare, and glorifying himself and not glorifying God.
And so Lucifer became Satan, the devil; and all of his angels sinned, as you read in, let's see, I think it's II Peter 2:4. "The angels that SINNED," and they did sin. They became demons, instead of angels. And so sin entered.
Now just keep that in mind. I probably haven't explained it just that way before. You may not have thought of it that way before, but bear that in mind. I'm going to give you something that you may not have thought of before. But let's get this whole thing straight. So here we had now a throne on the earth and government, and the government now was based on vanity and self. There could have been some self-righteousness in it; but it was self first, nevertheless.
There's a great duality principle in God's creation. For example, He created the man, but the man physically was not complete. He was a physical being made out of matter; but God wanted to him reproduce and have children—because God's purpose was to take matter, create human beings out of that matter, and have those human beings become, finally, born as children of God; and create Gods out matter, reproduce Himself out of matter that He had created. That's God's ultimate purpose!
So now He created a man. But He wanted the man to reproduce, because He wanted there to be many of them (instead of just reproducing one person as a God); and the man could not reproduce. You know, no man yet could reproduce by himself, nor could any woman reproduce by herself.
So God didn't take some dirt and make another person. Now think of that. Maybe you haven't thought of it that way before. But God put the man to sleep. He used anesthesia, so to speak, so the man didn't feel it. Just like they do in an operation today in a hospital, He performed an operation; and He took one of the man's ribs out of him, and He made a woman out of that rib.
Now He didn't make the woman out of dirt. He made the woman out of the man. He made the man to rule over the woman, but He made the man to rule in LOVE over the woman. And it should be LOVING authority that a husband should have for a wife. Loving authority! And loving authority means he's more concerned really for her good, and her welfare, and her comfort, and her happiness than he is for his own.
You don't find very much of that kind of love. The trouble is people spell love, not L-O-V-E; but they spell it L-U-S-T, lust. It's what so many husbands look on a wife, not to love but for lust, what they can get from her; but love is giving. Remember that: Love is not getting. Love is giving.
So sin now had entered, and there was Satan's government. Now man came. God had a purpose, and that was to reproduce Himself; but reproducing God's self required God's character. Character is learning this right way—which is God's way of life—and this principle, and obedience to that principle and to that leadership of God, and the WILL to enforce the self (even against the self-desire to go otherwise) to go that way. That is character. That character had to be instilled in the man. God intended to make man just as a clay model and instill that character in the clay model before the man could be changed into a spirit being and become God.
Genesis 1:26 Let us make man in OUR image, after OUR likeness.
Man was made to have a relationship with God, because ultimately he is going to become a child of God in the God Family. God is a Family, and He wanted man to be born into that Family. Man has to have CHARACTER to be born into that Family, spiritual character; and spiritual character is built on the way of obedience to God's Law. God's Law is the way of life. It is the way that leads to happiness, the way that leads to cooperation, to great production, to great accomplishment. God is an accomplisher, a Creator.
So man had to have character. Now that required man to make a choice. And here was Satan that had started another kind of life, had another kind of law. And Adam had to make a choice between (1) Satan's kind of way of doing your own thing, your own way, and vanity and (2) to surrender to God, and letting God reveal knowledge, and living God's way. Adam had to make a choice. So there were the two trees in the Garden of Eden that were symbolic—one of immortal life, which God would have given him through the Holy Spirit.
Now I say man was not physically complete till He made a woman out of man, and gave her to him; and they two became one family. Now they could reproduce and have children. But man was also made incomplete mentally and spiritually.
Now there's another way. I said man differs from an animal in two ways. One, he is in the form and shape of God. The other is man has a spirit with his brain that gives him mind power, and animals don't have that. Animals have a brain. An animal's brain… They find in the modern science of brain research, they find that the animal brain is just as good as the human brain.
But an animal can't think; an animal can't plan; an animal can't design, make plans, and carry them out. An animal has no sense of appreciation of music, and art, and literature. An animal does not have the sense of attitudes: of jealousy, of evil, of planning and scheming, and of things that man does. He just doesn't have the same type of mind. He doesn't have mind; he just has a brain. Animal brain is equipped with instinct and human brain is not.
Human brain rather has a spirit with it that God created to come within every man. A spirit. Now that spirit is essence. But the spirit that is in a man, that portion of spirit stays with the man for his entire life and becomes part of him, in a sense. It's something in him. Well, it's not… Man himself is matter, and the spirit is not matter. The soul is the living matter. An animal is a soul. A soul doesn't have spirit. A soul is not spirit. A soul is matter.
Satan has the world thinking that a soul is a spirit. It isn't. So get that out of your head, that soul is the spirit. Soul is the living, breathing animal. But there is a spirit IN the human breathing animal. In other words, there is a spirit in the soul. Man is the soul. And there's a spirit in man, and that spirit imparts the power of intellect to the human brain.
The animal brain can't think like a human can. It can't know the things a human can know. It can't take this bit of knowledge and that and all kinds of bits of knowledge and put them together into a reasoning process. It can't calculate things by arithmetic, by calculus, and by advance mathematics, and things of that sort. An animal doesn't have that type of ability. God does. Angels do, because they have mind power.
Through the spirit in man, man has mind power. Animals do not. Now man is dust. He has only temporary life. But the purpose is to reproduce him as God. And he is given that one spirit so he could (through that spirit) have a contact with God. He was created to have a relationship with God, and God wants him to become God's own child.
So man had to make a decision about character; and, to become God's child, he had to have God's kind of character in him. In other words, he had to agree with God's way of life—the law of God—which is love; and its love toward God first, and then love toward neighbor second. That's what it is.
You know, Satan didn't say anything like that to her at all! He didn't try to get her to worship him instead of God. No, no. He said: "You do your own thing." He tried to put vanity into her. He said, "If you take that forbidden fruit, it'll make you WISE. You'll be like God. You'll make yourself God. You can be as great as God or greater!" He wanted her to begin to think the same way he did, that maybe she could be greater than God.
And, besides, he tried to make her jealous and envious. He said, "God held something back. He didn't give you all of the trees. He held that one tree back. He gave you everything else, but he held one back. God is stingy; He's not fair!" He tried to make her envious and jealous.
So she used her reason. She did her own thing. Satan's law was do your own thing, go your own way. She did, and she took of that fruit and did eat it. She took it first! Go back and read it in the third chapter of Genesis. She gave to her husband, and he did eat with her. She ate it first. She was deceived, Adam wasn't. He knew better. He did it anyway, deliberately. And so, they both sinned; and they followed Satan's way of life. They obeyed Satan's law and rejected God's law.
God forbad them to eat it; and, if they had taken God's Law, they would have received the Holy Spirit of God. The Holy Spirit of God in the mind opens the mind to comprehend God's Law and to comprehend God's knowledge when God reveals knowledge. That means knowledge that is SPIRITUAL knowledge that man can only receive by having it REVEALED through the Spirit!
Now there is spiritual knowledge, and NO HUMAN MAN without the Spirit of God can understand spiritual knowledge. I don't care how great an education you have. The most learned men in the greatest universities in this world cannot understand spiritual knowledge. They just cannot understand it. Simple-minded humans, if they surrender to God and receive God's Holy Spirit, CAN understand spiritual things and spiritual knowledge.
So now, in a sense, Satan had kidnapped the one that God was going to have for His own child. So man had sinned, and now the penalty of that sin has to be death. Man was made with a temporary life that will run out—like a wound-up clock; and when it runs down, it will just quit running. In other words, it's going to die. God said, "If you will eat of that forbidden fruit, you will surely die." Satan said, "Well, God is lying. You're an immortal soul. You won't die." And human beings have been believing that lie ever since, although the Bible says, "The soul that sinneth, it shall die." It says that twice.
God said to the soul, Adam and Eve. He said, "If you take of that fruit, you will surely die." So the soul can die! But educated men today in the universities don't believe that. They believe Satan. In other words, they followed Satan's government; and Satan is on the throne of the world; and they sold out to Satan; and Satan kidnapped them.
Now, man had only this temporary life. God's purpose is to reproduce man. It required this character. Adam chose the wrong way, and so he neglected to have God's character; and God thereupon closed up the Tree of Life, which is His Holy Spirit. You see Adam was incomplete, spiritually and mentally. He had one spirit, a human spirit; and that human spirit made it possible for him to have a contact with God. That spirit made it possible for him to receive the Spirit of God and to come to have spiritual knowledge. That spirit gave man the power to have MIND power and to distinguish certain good, up to a certain level, from evil.
But to understand spiritual knowledge and God's kind of love took the love of God shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit. That is what Adam rejected. So God closed up the Tree of Life. And God closed up that Tree of Life until AFTER Jesus Christ, the second Adam, should come and pay the penalty of man's sin. Otherwise man had to die.
And, in the meantime, it is appointed for all men to die and after that the judgment God had ordained at the very time of the foundation of this world. And the foundation of this world is the time when Adam made the wrong choice that founded a world. It was Satan's world, based on Satan's law and Satan's government, and Satan is on the throne ruling this world. It is Satan's world. It is not God's world!
In due time, Jesus came born as a human baby. He was God now in the human flesh, and He was born of the Spirit of God; and he did have the Spirit of God BY BIRTH. Remember no other man now had the Spirit of God. God has shut it up from all other humans. But Jesus was born with the Spirit of God; and as a baby He had the Spirit of God within Him, as well as a human spirit.
Now, the two spirits join you to God. The spirit in man was given to man as a means of joining that man to God, just as Eve was joined to Adam and became one family. And so a man can be joined, or a woman can be joined, to God by the Spirit and become one Spirit.
Jesus came then as the second Adam to start God's world. Adam sold out to Satan. Satan is on the throne ruling the government with Satan's government, which is do your own thing. Vanity is the essence of his government. "Don't obey God. Do your own thing, and obey your own self." And, of course, Adam chose right and wrong. He chose the tree of the knowledge of good AND evil. And there IS good in man, as well as evil; but man's good can be only high enough up to the human level. The kind of good that God demands is a little higher kind of love than that.
Man can have a love that is carnal and selfish. For example, take mother love. That's perhaps the highest love that we know of in human love. A mother loves her baby because it's part of her, came out of her. It's hers, belongs to her. It's like part of her. It's a selfish love. She doesn't love other babies the same.
But God's love, God loves even His enemies. While we were yet enemies, Christ died for us. Those very people that were spitting in Jesus' face, were putting a crown of thorns on Him, making fun of Him, mocking Him, cursing Him, beating Him within an inch of His life; and finally taking His life by stabbing Him to death until He bled to death. He said, "Father, forgive them. They don't know what they're doing." And He gave His life for them. That was love!
You know, human good isn't that good. We don't have that kind of good. You can't have that kind of good until God GIVES it to you through His Holy Spirit.
I tell you, the churches in this world (the Church of England, the Roman Catholic Church, the Methodist, the Baptist, the Protestant churches) they don't know what that kind of good is—the righteousness of God by the Holy Spirit; and most of them don't ever say anything about the Holy Spirit of God. They don't know what it is.
It is the very life of God. And it's the Spirit, which is the attitude of God. It is the power of God. And it's the Spirit that opens up the mind to comprehend the knowledge of spiritual things, and the knowledge of God that an ordinary mind can't comprehend at all.
He started the Church. He was the one that started it, one Man. He called 12 disciples and taught them. He told them to go out to teach others. Now also there were a number of others that followed Him; until and including the 12 disciples, there were 120 that followed Jesus. And on the Day of Pentecost…
After Christ had paid for the penalty of sin by His death, and had been resurrected (and making the resurrection to life possible for us), and had ascended up to heaven as our High Priest, the Church was founded on the Day of Pentecost. So we observe Pentecost in the summer. And that is the beginning of the Church; and that means, "called out ones." The word "Church" comes from the Greek word "ekklesia;" and that means, "called out ones."
Jesus said to the people He was calling to the Church (And they had to be called by God.), He said, "Come out from among them" of this world. Come out from them "and be separate." Live God's Way of Life according to God's Law—instead of Satan's way of life according to Satan's law of doing your own thing, of disobedience to God, of the way of get instead of the way of GIVE, of the way of competition, of the way of... Oh, what are the words that I got to think of? Of controversy, of animosity and feelings toward other people of that kind, different forms of hatred, and so on.
"Come out from among them" and have God's love in your heart and God's Spirit in your mind, to open your mind to understand the knowledge of God, and the things of God; and have the love of God, so that we can even love our enemies and pray for our enemies. Do you do that, brethren? I confess I didn't for years. I didn't quite see that. But in recent months and years I've come to see that as never before, and I pray first for my enemies.
As I have said many times, I pray for them first before I pray for you people because they need it worse than you do, and you don't need it. And I love those enemies. They want to kill me. They hate me. They do everything against me they can. And really the only reason they hate me is because I love the Way of God and they don't. They don't realize that. They would never say they don't love the Way of God. They just say it's me that they don't like.
Well, I suppose those who killed Christ, they didn't realize the only reason they killed Him was because of what He said. They didn't like what He said. They didn't kill Him because He had halitosis and bad breath. They didn't kill because they didn't like His looks. They killed Him because they didn't like what He was teaching—the Way of love. And they wanted the way of self, and of vanity, and of self-glory. That's the reason they killed Jesus.
The Holy Spirit was not yet open to all flesh, although Joel prophesied (It's in the second chapter of Joel and about, I don't know, is it verse 30? I forget the exact verse, 32?) that the time will come when God is finally going to pour out His Spirit.
Now the Spirit is not a person. The Holy Spirit is not a ghost. The Holy Spirit is something God can pour out, like you pour water. It's essence, but it's divine essence. God will pour out His Spirit upon all flesh. That time has not come yet. But it began to be poured out on the Church on the Day of Pentecost. They were called out from the rest of the world, and they were called to live by God's government—the Law that forms the government of God in the Church.
Now you wonder: Why the Church age, then? Why does this Church have to have... We've had 1950 years already, and over. Why this church AGE, before God does anything more? Well now, let me explain that. It had to take time for the Church to be trained under Jesus as our High Priest; and we have to become kings and priests, when He comes, to train the rest of the world and convert the rest of the world.
God closed up the Holy Spirit; and no one could be converted until Jesus began to choose the Church EXCEPT—God made one exception—the prophets for the writing of the Old Testament, which was part of the foundation of the Church. That was a part of the Church, born ahead of time. Just the prophets, no one else received the Holy Spirit.
Ancient Israel did not have the Spirit of God. God gave them His Law. But it's a SPIRITUAL law, and it took the love of God shed abroad in their hearts by the Holy Spirit; and ancient Israel didn't have that kind of love. They only had human love, and that would be their human righteousness. And our own human righteousness, God says, is just like a lot of stinking, nasty, filthy rags to Him. He can't accept that as righteousness. It takes the righteousness of GOD, which comes by the Spirit of God, which ancient Israel didn't have.
Meanwhile, it was appointed for all men once to die. And all through these generations for 4,000 years men had been dying, but after that the judgment. And as all die in Adam (I Corinthians 15:22, "All die in Adam."), so the same all are sooner or later to be resurrected and brought back to life through Jesus Christ.
Now ancient Israel: They sacrificed lambs, which was sacrificing and a type of picture of Christ coming as the Lamb of God and being sacrificed for them; but they still didn't get the meaning. They never did understand it. And when the real Lamb of God came, they crucified Him. They rejected Him; and they do to this day reject Him, because their eyes have never been opened to know and to understand that the One they crucified was the very Messiah who gave His life for them.
But they are yet going to be called, don't you see? They're not condemned forever. You read the 11th chapter of Romans in the New Testament. Has God condemned and cast away His people Israel whom He foreknew? God forbid. Oh no, they are just for the time being. The day is coming when the Deliverer will come again to Zion and is going to save ancient Israel, even yet. And they will be resurrected. All those who died are going to be resurrected out of their graves.
It's only a matter now of the time when God changes us from human unto God, when we are converted and when we become children of God. Now it began with the second Adam, Christ. The spiritual creation began with Christ. And ancient Israel has always been blinded to that; and to this day they are still blinded, and they can't open their eyes to it.
So we are called—those called out for TRAINING in the Way of God. And God gives us His Holy Spirit so that we can understand the Word of God, so we can understand the Law of God, and so we can have the love of God shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit. We're being trained to become kings under Christ WHEN THE GOVERNMENT OF GOD IS RESTORED TO THIS EARTH instead of the government of Satan. Then we are going to start saving the whole world. That time hasn't come yet, and people don't understand it.
In the meantime, Jesus has become our High Priest, and He is the High Priest for THIS Church. He is not the High Priest for the Catholic Church. He is not the High Priest for the Methodist Church or the Church of England. He is the High Priest for THE CHURCH OF GOD and ONLY the Church of God, because the rest of them don't have this knowledge.
AND NO CHURCH ON EARTH BELIEVES A THING I HAVE BEEN TELLING YOU UP TO THIS POINT! They don't UNDERSTAND what I have been telling you here today. God has revealed it to me, and to me to reveal to you and for you to begin to understand it and to be trained in Godly living, in God's kind of living, according to God's Law, and through His Holy Spirit in your lives, His Spirit of love.
In the meantime, Jesus went to heaven as High Priest. Now I want to read a word or two right here out of Scripture. Well, I'm not going to turn to the Bible. I'm just going to quote this. In Acts 3, verses 19-21, the heavens have received Jesus until the times of restitution of all things. Now that's in Acts 3, verses 19 to 21—a sermon that Peter preached just a day or so after the Day of Pentecost when the Holy Spirit had first come.
Now restitution means restoring to a former state or condition, or restoring something that had been taken away and lost. Jesus is coming to restore the GOVERNMENT of God. He's coming to knock Satan off of that throne over the world, and Christ will sit on the throne and rule over all nations.
But Christ is going to be over all the nations and all the other nations. Now who is going to be over the Gentile nations? You ought to read our booklet, "The Wonderful World Tomorrow, What Will It Be Like?" and you will see who will be over all the other nations.
Now at the Second Coming of Christ, after the Church Age (We're coming very close to that time.) Jesus will return; and Satan is going to be imprisoned away from the world for 1,000 years; and Christ will rule as the King of kings. We who have been in the Church, and have had His Holy Spirit, and have grown in the knowledge and SPIRITUAL knowledge and the grace of God, who have overcome, and have endured to the very end—we will then be made immortal. And at the time of Christ's coming, those who have lived on earth from the Day of Pentecost on, and the ancient prophets, will all be resurrected out their graves.
And we that are alive and remain at that time, at the Second Coming of Christ—if any of us are still alive at that time; and I think that most of us would be. I don't know that I will; but most of you will be, brethren. And maybe, by the grace of God, He would even keep me alive that long. I don't know. That's for God to decide.
The dead in Christ shall rise first; and we will be changed from mortal to immortal in the twinkling of an eye, less than a second. It'll be an instant death and resurrection—made immortal, no longer composed of flesh and blood and of matter; but composed of spirit and made immortal, and rise and meet Christ in the air.
The only reason they are rising in the air to meet is because He is going to come down on the Mount of Olives over by Jerusalem and the people are going to come. You see this is a worldwide Church. And from all parts of the world they'll be resurrected out of their graves, or others living are all going to go up in the air; and that's the quickest way to get us all over, the same day. We will go instantaneously through the air, faster than airplanes, because we will be immortal then. We won't have to have airplanes.
All right. Now I think we need to understand why God has left Satan on the throne here for 6,000 years—and 2,000 years even after Christ came and overcame Satan and qualified to rule in his place. Had Jesus come right after Adam sinned (back at the time of Adam 6,000 years ago), then the purpose of God of having actually millions of humans converted and made into God-Beings would have been frustrated. Millions had to be born first, if they were going to be reborn and born again into the Kingdom of God. So God has had to give this time. There's a reason for all these things.
Now man was made mortal so he could die in the first place, lest (as you read in Genesis 3 verses 22 to 24), lest he would take of immortality and take the Tree of Life and live in sin forever. Sin just makes you unhappy and everybody else unhappy around you. So God would rather they just come and die finally into extinction, as if they had never been; and that's the ultimate end of those that refuse. But in the meantime, all were to die in Adam and be resurrected in Christ into a time of judgment.
The rest of the people in the world have not been called. And, if God has not called them as yet (and millions and billions of people have lived and died, and have never been called by God), they are going to have their chance; and their judgment is going to come. Now judgment is going to come, and I must read you something about that.
Let me see. I want to give you a definition of judgment. I've got it here. Judgment is a trial, a decision, or a sentencing of a judge. You are called before a judge, taken to a courtroom today; and you are tried to see whether you're guilty or innocent. The judge will decide to your guilt or innocence, and you go free or you're sentenced. He will put the sentence, and then it will be carried out.
But in the Great White Throne Judgment, when billions of people that have died unsaved, they are all going to be found guilty all right because they sinned. But then they are going to find that Jesus Christ came that they didn't know about, or that they have rejected because they didn't understand; and that He paid for their sin and paid the PENALTY in their stead, and that they don't have to die. If they want to receive God's Spirit, they can yet receive God's Holy Spirit. And then, if they will live according to God's Law and God's Way of Life, they can develop that character; and then they will be converted and receive eternal life.
At Christ's Second Coming that we celebrated on the Day of the Feast of Trumpets, Revelation 19:7, where it says, "Let's us be glad and rejoice, and give honor to Him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and His wife has made herself ready." Brethren, we are to be that wife! We are the affianced… The Church is the affianced bride of Christ.
Now that includes the original apostles of 1900 years ago. That includes all the original prophets. That includes Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; and I think perhaps Joseph is included with that. That includes Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel. That includes Daniel. That includes the prophets. That includes all the Church that really had God's Spirit within them, and have lived according to God's Spirit, and have overcome, and have grown in grace and knowledge, and have endured till their death time; and they'll be resurrected.
Revelation 19:8-9 And to her [the wife] was granted that she should [That's the Church now, at the Second Coming of Christ.] be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white; for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints. (9) And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true saying of God.
You know, brethren, ever since my wife Loma died back in 1967, I have been holding a formal dinner for every senior student at Ambassador College in Pasadena before they graduate. So I have to have a number of such dinners every year because I can only take 11 at a time. I make the twelfth, and the dining table just seats 12 people. It's a formal dinner. And at the last dinner that we had, which is just a few nights ago, I was saying that a king or two had dined at that table. Well, one king had dined there that died just a couple of weeks (10 days ago), King Leopold; and he sat at my right at the same table. But I had said that all those sitting there are future kings—kings and priests.
Brethren, we're all going to sit at a finer table someday, at that Marriage Supper. That is going to be a table of real splendor, let me tell you. That is going to be wonderful. That will be the finest table at which you have ever sat, and I hope you'll all be there. I hope I will be, and I hope we'll all be there.
Hebrews 8:6-7 But now has [Christ] obtained a more excellent ministry, by which also He is the mediator of a better covenant [Better than the Old Covenant.], which was established on better promises. (7) For if that first covenant [made in the time of Moses with ancient Israel]…
Now that made Israel a nation, one of the world's nations. It also made Israel a Church—a congregation called "the congregation of Israel." And it also made Israel the wife of the One who became Christ. It was a marriage! But Israel played the harlot, and Israel was not faithful to the marriage. Now it was a marriage covenant. And so the New Covenant will be a Marriage Covenant.
Hebrews 8:7-8 For if that first covenant had been faultless, then should no place be sought for the second. (8) But finding fault with them [Not with the Ten Commandments, but finding fault with the people.], He said, "Behold, the days come, says the [Eternal], when I will make a NEW COVENANT [not with Gentiles]...
Now you know the Methodist church, the Baptists, and some of them, they will tell you that the Old Covenant was made with the Jews but the New Covenant will be made with Gentiles. The Old Covenant wasn't made with Jews! It was made with Israelites, and only part of the Israelites were Jews (just those of Judah). But the people don't understand those things today.
Hebrews 8:8 I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel AND with the house of Judah.
The house of Judah are the Jewish people. And the house of Israel are the British and the American people, and also the northern French, and the Dutch, the Belgians, the Swedes, the Danes, the Norwegians. He is going to make a New Covenant with them.
Hebrews 8:9 Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers [That's back in the days of Moses.]…when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; because they continued NOT in my covenant, and I regarded them not, saith the [Eternal].
A covenant is a contract, an agreement. It was a marriage agreement, but it was a covenant that made them a nation; and it made them Christ's wife.
Hebrews 8:10 For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel [and with the house of Judah] after those days, says the Lord; I will put my laws [God's laws]in their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be their God, and they shall be to me a people.
And we will be God's people and God's nation. Now that will be a divine nation. And we will be part of them of the Family of God; and it will be the Family of God that will be the ruling nation, ruling over all the nations of the world for a thousand years.
In Revelation 3:21, Jesus said that if we overcome we will be granted to sit with Him on His throne when He comes and rules over all the earth. In Revelation 2:27-28, He said, if we overcome we will be given POWER over the nations to rule, and under Christ for that thousand years. And in Revelation 5:10 it says we will be kings and priests and will reign ON THE EARTH. Not up in heaven, but on the earth.
I Corinthians 6:2 Do ye not know that the saints [And that should be us.] shall judge the world?
We are taught, when judgment comes to the world in the Millennium, we're going to be doing the judging—under Christ—because we will be God-Beings. We'll be God then, and we are going to judge the world. Now notice verse 3:
I Corinthians 6:3 Know ye not that we shall judge angels? How much more then things that pertain to this life?
We have to do some judging, even in the Church. We have to do it, and that becomes my painful duty at some times. But we have to judge according to the Word of God. He gives us all of the rules. It's just a matter of carrying out God's instructions. That's all.
Now, let me see. Matthew 25. Oh yes, I'm going to turn to that next. Matthew 25 and beginning with verse 31.
Matthew 25:31-34 When the Son of man shall come in his glory [That's at the Second Coming of Christ, soon to happen now.], and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: (32) And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: (33) And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left. (34) Then [Not later, but then. Notice, then...]shall the King say to them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, INHERIT the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.
To inherit… We don't inherit the Kingdom when we are converted now, brethren. We only become heirs, and an heir hasn't inherited yet. Inherit means they will be changed from mortal to immortal, right then. Through the Millennium, those that are being converted, I presume that they will have to live a lifetime until they die; and be tried, and tested, and overcome (like we do), and grow in grace and knowledge (like we do). But at the time of their death during the Millennium, they will be changed. Instead of just dying and being buried, they will be changed to immortality right then; and that'll be carrying on through the Millennium.
Now I want to come to some things that may not have been understood. Back in Zechariah, and I won't take time to read it, but in Zechariah , especially in verses 16 to 19, you will read that in the Millennium when Christ comes all nations are going to have to come up to Jerusalem to keep the Feast of Tabernacles. And if the family of Egypt won't come, God is going to send no rain. They'll have a famine. And He will hold rain away from them for a year; and then, if they don't come, He'll send plagues that will make them come.
So when Christ comes at the Second Coming, the nations are going to be angry. They don't want Him. They are going to say that He is the antichrist, that He is NOT Jesus Christ. That's what they will be saying at that time. And it's going to take time during the Millennium. Again, people have learned the wrong things; and they are going to have to unlearn before they can learn God's truth. And it's going to take about three generations before (maybe four generations before) we find that we have taken away all these false teachings of the Protestant churches and the Roman Catholic Church, and other ideas and traditions of humans, and taught them the truth of God, much of which I am giving you right here this afternoon. It's going to take generations before they'll come to really understand it.
Now then, we are coming down to explain some of the final things. Let's see how time is getting along. If this is right, we are overtime right now. Is that right? (I thought I was talking too late the Last Day on the satellite, and I found that I actually quit 15 minutes early.) Well, I'm going to have to close this very quickly; but I want to go a little farther. You've come a long distance for it; and I have too, to explain it to you.
Now the ones who are going to follow Satan: Remember that there will be MILLIONS of people born in that last century—only born then, never been born before. They'll know practically nothing about Satan. They have been taught God's ways. They don't know of Satan's ways of competition, and exalting yourself, and his ways of vanity. And, when Satan is loosed, he is going to instruct people in his ways of vanity, and competition, and getting everything for yourself; and millions are going to begin to fall for that and go his way. And that's when you read that they will come down and encompass the camp of the saints about, in Revelation 20; and fire will come down from heaven and devour them.
Then will come the White Throne Judgment. And in the Great White Throne Judgment, ALL OF THOSE—clear from Adam, and Cain, and Abel; on down for all those 6,000 years; and all that have died up to the Second Coming of Christ—who were not converted and didn't have God's Holy Spirit (and that will be the overwhelming majority of all of them), they will then be resurrected in that Great White Throne resurrection.
You should have heard about that on the Last Day of the Feast, after the Feast of Tabernacles really was over, on that last final Great Day. And that's when that will occur. They will be resurrected, and they will live 100 years. And in that 100 years… There will be one more 100 years. At that time, they will then know the truth. All the blindness will be stripped from their eyes. God will call them. And if they will answer the call, if they will repent, if they will surrender to God's Way of Life—which is God's Law (and remember that the Law is a way of conduct, a way of life, of performance toward God and toward neighbor)—they then will receive God's Spirit; and there will be billions of them.
And then, finally, you will read in the second chapter of Hebrews that, from then on, all the others… There'll be a final resurrection, of course. That's in Revelation 20 also. Those of the incorrigible wicked that just rejected everything, some of them are finally just going to lose out entirely; and there'll be a Lake of Fire. That'll be the earth becoming a molten mass; and it will just burn them up, and they will be ashes under the soles of the feet of the rest.
Everyone will have had every chance in the world to become a God-Being. Everyone who has ever been born will. God is no respecter of persons. The fact that we have the opportunity now and others not yet means that there is a greater responsibility on us. Also I think perhaps some, well, I think a greater position because we will be priests and kings and reigning, helping to bring others to come into that condition; and ours will be, I think, the greater honor. But everybody is going to have the chance for immortal life and to come, as a God-Being, into the God Family.
And, I tell you, the glories that lie ahead that God has for all of us ultimately are clear beyond anything you can imagine or describe in any way at all. It's just clear beyond belief. So we should give all glory to God; and realize that, just like Paul wrote in Romans one place [Rom. 11:32], His ways are beyond finding out. They are so wonderful that we just don't understand them, and we don't really get them.
But I hope I have given you a little more understanding this afternoon.
We need to keep these things basically in mind because they are the foundation, and all the other things of how we must live as Christian lives fit within the framework of this general outline and foundation that I have given you this afternoon. I can see that it's my job to give you this basic foundation, primarily; and the other ministers… In other words, I'm giving you THE TRUNK OF THE TREE—the roots, and the trunk, and the major branches. And the others fill in with the smaller branches, and its smaller branches than that; then the little twigs. And all those are important too. They are all part of the same tree.
But it's all part of the same overall purpose of God, and it's a wonderful purpose. It's a wonderful thing that we have been called to such a high calling. It's clear beyond anything you can possibly imagine.
Well, I'm glad I have been able to have a talk—to be with you this afternoon. And so I will say now, "Good-bye, till next time."
Getting Back on TrackFor the last, especially, the last three or four years, the Head of this Church, Jesus Christ, has been getting His Church back on track. We were getting off the track. The Church was getting off the track in the United States. Liberalism was coming in. It's not so long ago that I found the same type of thing was getting in over here among you brethren. I think that we're glad to see that gone. We're not glad to see some of the people that were involved gone from among us. But, if they are going to cling to that sort of thing, I guess it's better they go with it; because the apostle Paul said that we must all speak the same thing, and he beseeched us in the name of Jesus Christ.
Avoid those Causing DivisionAnd if there's one or two in the Church that are out for trouble, the whole Church is having trouble. That's why God says, "Mark those that are causing division, and offenses, contrary to the doctrine that we've been taught through Christ, and avoid them."
Clearing Up UnderstandingNow this afternoon—following the whole year's festivals, which have just recently ended now—I would like to go back over certain points that I feel may still be not quite clearly understood in the minds of all of us, and specially some things respecting the Millennium and the Great White throne Judgment and the matter that AFTER....
WANTING TO UNDERSTANDYou know, I have always wanted to understand. I have always asked why. My father told me when I was 5 years that I was sure to be, not what I thought I was going to be when I grew up. You know, at 5 years of age we had the little dinky trolley cars just coming in; and the horse-drawn cars… I presume it's the same over here in England. It was in the United States. We had horse-drawn streetcars, and they were just going out. The first trolley cars, little small cars (We call them dinkies over there.), and they were coming in.
Jesus, The Living WordNow Jesus was the Spokesman—the Word, or Spokesman. When He was on earth, He taught the apostles. He's not on earth now. He's in heaven as our High Priest. The early Church got all of its teaching from the apostles, and the apostles got it from Jesus Christ in person.
Understanding ORIGINSWe come into this world, down in the year now 1983; it will soon be 1984 before we know it. We see the world as it is today, but we don't know what made it this way. We don't know how it came to be and become this way. It's like turning into a movie, a motion picture (or cinema, you call it over here); and well, it's almost over. It's been going on a long time, and you try to understand it and enjoy the last 5 or 10 minutes of it; and, you know, you don't understand it at all. You didn't see what went on before; and what you are seeing now doesn't make sense, if you don't know what happened before and what led up to it.
THE PRE-EXISTENCE OF GODSo now I'd like to begin at the beginning and just go real rapidly through everything. To understand these festivals that we've been going through, they picture the whole plan of the spiritual creation of God. God's creation of man has been in two stages: First, the physical creation, and then the spiritual creation. The physical creation began with Adam, the first Adam; and the spiritual creation began with the second Adam, Jesus Christ. But why? And what is it? And what's the difference?
God's manner of livingIf They lived, there had to be a manner of living. I have shown They had a purpose. To do that, They had to live and They had to do certain things. Now there had to be a manner of living. How did They live? They lived the way of love. Two can't walk together except they be agreed. Well, They agreed.
The Way, or law, of GodThe way They lived is the way of love and cooperation, and there was a leader. Now that way of life becomes a matter of law. Stop and think. We talk about law, and we have laws. You have a Parliament down here in London, and the Parliament is a law-making body. Humans make laws; and you have police officers, and we have other officials, who administer and enforce those laws. If you break a law, there is a penalty and you get punished.
Creation of AngelsNow going back, God is a Creator. All right, let's go back to the beginning now. The first thing that God created was angels. Now there was no matter, there was no earth. There was no sun or moon, no stars, no such thing as matter—just space.
GOVERNING THE MATERIAL UniverseGod then created the universe and the earth, and the earth made is out of matter. Now the suns are not, well, they are matter all right; but they are a type of electrical matter that is very brilliantly bright and shines, and has terrific heat. Well, anyway, I won't try to go into a scientific analysis of the sun. But here was the earth, and God placed one third of the angels on the earth to inhabit the earth.
BEAUTY AND VANITYSo God had His government based on His laws of love, first of all toward God and then toward one another. Lucifer was set on a throne of GOVERNMENT to rule the government on this earth over angels, but he was to rule under God and administer God's government. Now he looked and he saw that God had all these other planets that He had made, and He gave Lucifer only this one; and he got VERY jealous. He looked at his own splendor and beauty and began to think, "How important I am!" And vanity seized him. Vanity just gripped him; and he said, "I think I should be greater than God. Look at how beautiful I am."
Doing Your Own ThingThe principle of sin, then, was vanity; and vanity exalts the self. Vanity makes self want to serve self instead of others and to take away from others, to get from others. Instead of helping others and cooperating and giving to others, it's taking away from others; and getting and competition enters. And that became a law—a way of life. Here was Satan on the throne of the earth, and he changed the kind of law of the government he was administering; and the government he administered from that time on was vanity, exalt yourself, and do your own thing. Don't do what you are commanded. Do your own thing. And he was going to do his own thing.
Creation of ManGod then formed man. Now He formed man of the dust of the ground. God had created matter, and now He took some of the matter that was in the earth and formed a man out of it. But God doesn't create all at once. In many ways God creates in two stages; sometime in more of a gradual progression of stages, but in many ways in two different stages.
Temporary Life OnlyNow He made man of the dust of the ground; and man had only the same life that an animal does, which is a temporary existence. There were just two differences between a man and an animal. Man is an animal except for two things. Two things differentiate him from an animal so that he is not an animal. One is he is made in the form and shape of God. God said not "Let Me" but "Let US." See, there was God and the Word together.
Rejecting RevelationAdam influenced… Well, Satan got to Eve first; and Eve influenced Adam into making the wrong decision. Now Satan came to Eve; and when he came to Eve (I want you to notice one thing that maybe you never noticed before.) Satan didn't say to Eve, "Look. Don't you worship God. You worship me. I'm God. I am on the throne on this earth; and you worship me and my government, not God's government."
Satan's World TodayThe world assumes that this is God's world. It is not! It is Satan's world, and Satan has kidnapped them. In the eighth chapter of John you will read that the people who even believe in Jesus Christ; but don't have His Spirit, and don't obey God; and are the children of Satan the devil. And Satan is their father. Spiritually, he is their father. Not God. So this thing of the brotherhood of man and the fatherhood of God is just so much tommyrot. It isn't' true, that's all.
At-One-MentNow this Day of Atonement: You know, we have a lot to be found out on the Day of Atonement—that it is spelled A-T (at) O-N-E (one) M-E-N-T (ment). At-one-ment. We finally become at one with God; and we can't be as long as Satan has kidnapped us away from God. That's the situation that we are in.
The Church, Start of God's WorldJesus came to start God's world, and He came to start it by starting the Church. The Church was started with one Man. Now this world, Satan's world, was started with one man—the human Adam. Now God's SPIRITUAL creation is beginning with "Adam." It'll be God's world, and it began with one Man—"the second Adam"—Jesus Christ.
Restoring THE Government of GodNow He came to restore the government of God on this earth. That's another thing, there's Satan sitting on that throne of the government of God. So the Church began with Jesus. Then there was the Twelve. On the Day of Pentecost there were 120. Now the Church began to grow. They received the Holy Spirit, the first time the Holy Spirit had been opened; but still it was opened only to those that God would call into the Church.
Called to be TeachersIt's a matter of government. It's a matter that makes sense all the way through. There had to be a Church Age to have time to train people that God is calling out of the world; and it's only a few, one out of maybe hundreds of thousands. Every one of you is just one out of hundreds of thousands that God has called. And all of the others (a hundred thousand others for every one of you) God never called. They are not converted yet. Not yet. But many of them will be someday. People don't understand God.
The Second Coming of ChristWhen Jesus comes in the Second Coming, He is going to sit on two different thrones; and they are both going to be in the same city and the same country. One of them is the throne of David, and that's the throne over the one nation of Israel; but that nation of Israel, every tribe has become a nation, every one of those 12 tribes. It will be on those 12 nations. And the different apostles of the first Church, of the first century, each one is going to be a king over one of those nations; and David will be over all of them.
Judgement Now on UsNow, in the meantime, judgment was put on the Church of God. And, this Church Age, we have been under judgment; and we are being judged once-and-for-all now. We in the Church—you are never going to have another chance, brethren. You are either going into the Kingdom of God by what you are doing now in this life, or you are go into the Lake of Fire and burn up to a crisp and be ashes under the soles of the feet of those that go on living forever. One or the other!
The Marriage SupperNow the wife will have made herself ready. And that doesn't mean everybody in the Church is going to be part of that wife however. It does mean that—if we are accounted worthy to escape these things that are coming—we will, with the Spirit of God, if we are being [led] by it. Now let me see. The marriage is explained in verses 8 and 9. Let me go on and read that. Verse 8:
The New CovenantNow Christ made a Covenant with ancient Israel; and He is going to make a New Covenant, and we need to understand that New Covenant. You read of it in Hebrews the eighth chapter. Let's see.
TIMES OF JUDGMENTJudgment is now on the Church, you read in 1 Peter 4:17. We are being judged now. The world and angels are to be judged by us. Now I want you to note in 1 Corinthians 6, verses 2 and 3. 1 Corinthians 6, verses 2 and 3, where the apostle Paul said:
At the End of the MillenniumAt the end of the Millennium, here's one thing that some didn't understand. The earth will be full of the knowledge of God. Satan will be gone. And after 1,000 years, now look how many lifetimes that is. A majority of the people, when you get down into that last 100 years of the Millennium, will not know much about Satan. He'll be long forgotten. And in that last group there will be many that as yet have not been changed into immortality; and they are still under judgment (and their time hasn't been fulfilled yet, either being condemned or receiving immortal life), which takes a lifetime for everybody anyway. And then Satan will be loosed.
Rebuilding the UniverseAnd then, finally, we are going to go out to the other planets all over the vast universe. What we are going to do God doesn't say. But they are just like hunks of burned out, decayed matter at the present time. I think they are going to blossom forth, just like beautiful gardens can be very beautiful on this earth; and I think under God's plan they can be more beautiful than they are now; and that's the way it's going to be.