Letter to the Brethren – November 14, 2014
Dear Brethren and Friends,
God’s laws work—blessings for obedience and punishment for disobedience!
First of all, they can help EACH ONE OF US, individually. When we make the law of God the ultimate standard for ALL that we do—even to the point of HOW we think—then we are becoming more and more like Jesus Christ. Furthermore, based on our new relationship as begotten children of God (2 Corinthians 5:17), Christ lives in us, to help us (Galatians 2:20). And of us, the Word of God reveals that “we have the mind of Christ” (1 Corinthians 2:16).
Only if these things are true can we bear godly fruit in the manner that Jesus did—who obeyed the Father faithfully and who committed no sin (compare Hebrews 4:15; 1 John 3:5).
Yet, it is because of SIN—the breaking of all of the righteous laws of God (1 John 3:4)—that the world is now on the verge of a kind of global suicide. Try as it might, humanity doesn’t have a clue of how to bring about true peace—only violence prevails, for individuals as well as for nations (Romans 3:10-18).
A second point is this, NATIONS can be saved IF they turn to God and begin to keep His commandments (compare: Book of Jonah)! The world is being warned through the preaching of the gospel of the Kingdom of God (Matthew 24:14), and this time-frame is limited—once the message is given, God expects a response:
“‘The instant I speak concerning a nation and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up, to pull down, and to destroy it, if that nation against whom I have spoken turns from its evil, I will relent of the disaster that I thought to bring upon it’” (Jeremiah 18:7-8).
Will any nation repent in our day? We don’t know, but consider what Jesus Christ said regarding what we should expect when we also preach the gospel of the Kingdom of God:
“‘Remember the word that I said to you, “A servant is not greater than his master.” If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you. If they kept My word, they will keep yours also’” (John 15:20).
And Ezekiel, whose message contains prophecies for our time, was told by God:
“‘But the house of Israel will not listen to you, because they will not listen to Me; for all the house of Israel are impudent and hard-hearted’” (Ezekiel 3:7).
Even when the terrible events occurring at the end of this age become unbearable, most people will still refuse to humble themselves in repentance:
“But the rest of mankind, who were not killed by these plagues, did not repent of the works of their hands, that they should not worship demons, and idols of gold, silver, brass, stone, and wood, which can neither see nor hear nor walk. And they did not repent of their murders or their sorceries or their sexual immorality or their thefts” (Revelation 9:20-21; also, 16:9, 11).
The Book of Revelation reveals, however, that some people will turn to God in the future, but it will be in the time of unparalleled trouble (Matthew 24:21-22):
“After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could number, of all nations, tribes, peoples, and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, saying, ‘Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!’… Then one of the elders answered, saying to me, ‘Who are these arrayed in white robes, and where did they come from?’ And I said to him, ‘Sir, you know.’ So he said to me, ‘These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb’” (Revelation 7:9-10, 13-14).
Brethren, we have had our eyes opened to see and to understand these momentous events! That knowledge bears great accountability for us to respond to God’s calling to salvation. It also conveys God’s commission for His people to proclaim what is about to happen (compare Ezekiel 2:3; 3:4, 17; 33:7; Mark 16:15-16).
For those who were not able to join us at the Feast of Tabernacles and the Last Great Day observances, where we distributed our latest booklet, “When And How Will Christ Return?”, a copy is included with this letter.
This publication, written by Evangelist Norbert Link, is our fortieth booklet! Pointing to the absolute certainty that Jesus Christ will return and that world events are now coinciding with major prophecies of the close of this age, Mr. Link reminds Christians of our personal role in the timing of the Father’s determination to send His Son to save the earth and all life on it!
As we watch for and await the return of Jesus Christ, we must remain FAITHFUL and OBEDIENT to God, and in doing so, let us FINISH the Work of God which has been given to us!
In Christ’s Service,