April 20, 2012
“Now FAITH is the substance of things HOPED FOR, the EVIDENCE of things not yet seen. . . . But WITHOUT FAITH, it is IMPOSSIBLE to please Him, for he who comes to God MUST BELIEVE that He is, and that He is A REWARDER of those who DIIGENTLY SEEK HIM” (Hebrews 11:1,6).
A Walk of FAITH to LIFE
Realizing the very critical state of this nation, and the world, in which live several thousand members of God’s true Church, and with even greater problems developing that threaten the very existence of one and all, I intend to use a former Pastor’s Comments I wrote in 11-13-09, entitled: “A WALK of FAITH to LIFE”
Always we need to be reminded and strengthened with words of faith and trust in God and Jesus Christ to remain steadfast in Their Path of Life regardless of how hard the trials may come to be before us.
A Cloud of Witnesses
It has always been a walk of faith for God’s true people in spite of the many obstacles they had to face and endure (Hebrews 11; 12:1-2).
They reflected on God’s promises during those times and prayed fervently for the strength to endure whatever might come upon them. And Christ gave them that needed strength.
We of today are facing obstacles even greater than at any time in mankind’s history (Matthew 24:21); and we must be praying daily for the same strength as those before us that we not only need for the day to day problems, but also knowing we are standing on the very precipice of problems never before faced in this nation and also the world. It is that serious!
At the same time we have assurance from promises of God that we will have the needed strength to keep walking in faith; and it will also be given to us as was given in past ages to those who completed their walk— if we have an ongoing right and close relationship with our Father and Jesus Christ.
To give us an overview of where we have come to in time, I am using a past writing (also given in a sermon) of Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong, who while expressing the problems as they were at that time, knew where they were leading the Church and mankind— and we are now seeing them more fully today.
Though this writing was written some years ago, it is even more appropriate now than at that time. To aid our understanding of it appropriateness— it is only a matter of changing some names and dates which I will insert in the correct places.
Time We Are In, Now
by Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong
Just where are we, now, in the prophesied panorama of events leading to the END of this age?
Both world events and occurrences in the Church indicate we are in the time mentioned in Daniel 12.
In verse 2, Daniel speaks of the resurrection of saints at the time of Christ's coming. Then he speaks of events leading up to that crowning event of history. He says, "But thou, 0 Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased" (Verse 4).
We have come to that time— the TIME OF THE END! Rapid travel, to and fro, at high speed! We are definitely in the END TIME! Knowledge has been increased on earth amazingly.
We have been going with increasing momentum through the age of invention, the age of science and technology, the air age, the space age, and now the NUCLEAR age. Now, for the first time in human history, the weapons of mass destruction have been produced that can erase all humanity from the earth!
In the one decade of the 60s, the fund of human knowledge DOUBLED. Also the world's troubles and evils DOUBLED!
In verse 7 it is stated, "...and when he shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished." [KJV]
It seems indefinite as to the antecedent of the pronoun "he," above. Other translations use the word "they." But surely Satan is now endeavoring to scatter and even totally nullify the power God has given to His Church.
There has been a falling away, though compared to the total number, it has been minimal [no longer minimal since 1995]. And the attack of the State of California  was an action calculated to DESTROY the Church of the living GOD! Yet Jesus Christ our living HEAD has used it to draw us much closer to HIM and to one another.
Our Work in the hands of Christ is NOT YET FINISHED, and He will not allow the Work to stop until it is finished! And when will that be? It surely can't be much longer [2010 is the new 19-year time cycle and each beginning cycle has to do with the gospel as Mr. Armstrong has written and said. Could the end of the work be completed on or about January 7, 2010?] We are certainly on the final lap, if not the home stretch— but no definite date can, of course, be set.
But when Daniel writes, in verse 7, "all these things shall be finished," he refers back to the subject of this 12th chapter mentioned at the beginning— when the archangel Michael shall stand up (verse 1, as also mentioned in Revelation 12:7) and Satan shall be cast down— and the GREAT TRIBULATION (Verse 1 and Matthew 24:21-22, Mark 13:19-20, Luke 21:22) from the beginning will be 3½ years.
Daniel did not understand, but the angel said, "Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end" (Daniel 12:9).
And then what— in the TIME OF THE END, into which we have entered? "Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried, but the wise shall understand" (Verse 10). WE ARE IN THAT TIME OF TRYING AND TESTING, TO BRING US CLOSER TO GOD— TO PREPARE US FOR CHRIST'S COMING— NOW!
Many of us are being tried and tested as NEVER BEFORE— and for our own good!
But, verse 11, ". . . from the time the daily sacrifice shall be taken away...." Consider this a moment. This does NOT imply a material temple to be built in our time in Jerusalem.
It does seem to imply [did not say it would not be built] the Israelis may restore the daily (twice daily) sacrifice— possibly at the Wailing Wall. The indication is the armies of the "beast" of Revelation 17, entering Jerusalem (Daniel 11:41, Zechariah 14:2), will stop this daily sacrifice. "...And the abomination that maketh desolate set up." What is this abomination?
This refers to Daniel 11:31 and Matthew 24:15. In Daniel 11:31, the armies of Antiochus Epiphanes were at Jerusalem, and some commentators have interpreted it as Antiochus placing a statue of Jupiter in the Holy of Holies in the Temple. [168-165 B.C]
Not only does Matthew 24:15 also refer to this, but in a parallel New Testament scripture, Luke 21:20 speaks of the same thing as "Jerusalem compassed with armies." This is the correct meaning of this "abomination." It is the armies— not a statue— that makes Jerusalem desolate.
From this time (Daniel 12:11) to Christ's coming will be 1290 days.
Now, verse 12, "Blessed is he that waiteth, and cometh to the 1335 days."
Never before have we understood these periods of 1260, 1290, and 1335 days. But it seems evident, now, a blessing is pronounced on us— GOD'S CHURCH— who wait and endure until the 1335 days— approximately 1335 days prior to Christ's coming. But since no one can know the day or the hour of His coming, we probably shall not be able to know the exact day that this 1335 days begins.
But apparently that is the time when OUR WORK SHALL END. That will be a time when the UNITED EUROPE shall appear— the revival of the medieval "Holy Roman Empire." We shall then be warned, and readied to be taken to a place of refuge and safety from the Great Tribulation. Forty-five days later "the beast's" armies will surround Jerusalem.
Thirty days later the Great Tribulation will probably start with a nuclear attack on London and Britain— and possibly the same day or immediately after, on United States and Canadian cities.
The GREAT TRIBULATION, we shall then fully realize, is the time of "Jacob's Trouble," spoken of in Jeremiah 30:7. And Jacob's name was named on Joseph's sons, Ephraim and Manasseh (Genesis 48:16).
At that time a third of the people in our nations will die, or shall have died, by famine and disease epidemics; another third will die of the war— our cities being destroyed (Ezekiel 6:6), and the remaining third will be carried to the land of our enemies as slaves (Ezekiel 5:12).
But while this most terrible TRIBULATION is happening to our people, shall we of God's Church be protected? . . . Does Revelation 3:10 mean what it says? The Unger's Bible Dictionary under article on the Great Tribulation, refers to Revelation 3:10, showing the Great Tribulation covers the whole earth. No other such time of worldwide trial and trouble is prophesied. A Bible I formerly used had in the marginal reference of Revelation 3:10 "or, the Great Tribulation."
Also Revelation 12:14 shows the church being FLOWN into a place of safety in the wilderness. After this, Revelation 12:17, Satan will make war with the remnant, or Laodicean Church. That leads up to Christ's coming.
So, where are we NOW, in the panorama of prophecy?
We have reached the time just before a "U.S. of Europe" restores the "Holy Roman Empire," under the Papacy, in a union of Church and State
The present Pope, John Paul II, [now, Pope Benedict XVI] could very well be the Pope that will trigger this and bring it into reality. . . . Once that third great world power is formed, our work will soon be over. That could happen in a year, two years, or five years [from now]. It could happen SUDDENLY, leaving the whole world aghast in WONDER!
Right now the Iranian crisis is the BIG NEWS. Their Moslem present head, Khomeini [now,is today threatening to try the remaining U.S. Embassy hostages as spies, which would mean they would be executed. That could provoke a WAR— unless President Carter [now, President Obama] is too weak.
The WHOLE WORLD is now ON FIRE! This is not the GREAT TRIBULATION, but is certainly preliminary to it.
It's time for intensive FASTING AND PRAYER!
End of Article
Mr. Armstrong said this with the HOPE of the resurrection to life in his mind.
This should be the driving HOPE within each of us while we yet live with the GOAL of the resurrection always uppermost in our minds of being accepted and changed at Christ’s coming (Philippians 3:14-15).
It must be emphasized—it is a life of FAITH we have been called and selected to live! And IF we continue to live by it, and persevere, FAITH will make possible for us to meet Jesus Christ in the clouds when He returns to this earth.
“Now the JUST shall live by FAITH; but IF anyone DRAWS BACK My soul has NO pleasure in him” (Hebrews 10:38).
The definition of faith should be very meaningful to each of us.
Hebrews 11:1 “Now FAITH is the substance (realization) of things HOPED for, the EVIDENCE (confidence) of things NOT seen.”
This FAITH is based on both knowing God and Jesus Christ and on the PROMISES They have made to us. And as God’s true people we are to embrace those promises and live with full expectancy of being blessed with everlasting life that will be so far superior to this life there is no real comparison.
Abraham did NOT live to see the city he was looking for (Hebrews 11:8-10); he only was told about it by the LORD God; the New Jerusalem that is still over 1100 years away; even so, he believed what he had been told by God, and remained faithful to Him all his life (Hebrews 11:8-10; Romans 4:3, 21-22).
Though terrible problems in this nation and world are on our very door-step, we need not be overly frightened when we consider as did the Psalmist in what he wrote for God’s people of all time:
“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will NOT fear, though the earth be removed, and the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; though its waters roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with its swelling. . . . The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge” (Psalm 46:1-3, 7, 11).
This is the kind of FAITH that each one of us must have to complete our walk of FAITH.
“But without FAITH it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God MUST BELIEVE that He is, and that He is A REWARDER of those of those who diligently seek Him” (Hebrews 11:6).
Regardless of what we have to experience before our Savior returns we must realize the depth of what the apostle Paul wrote about this subject and believe it with our whole heart:
“For I consider that the sufferings of this present life are NOT worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us” (Romans 8:18).
It is with this HOPE in mind that we are to take courage and agree fully with our whole heart and being what he further wrote about this coming blessing to each of us regardless of what we may have to yet experience in human life:
“Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors THROUGH Him who loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels (demons) nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from THE LOVE OF GOD which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8:37-39).
It is a continued walk of faith for each of us with living HOPE that will soon lead to real life— never to ever again experience the sorrow and pain of this life. And then Christ will then wipe away the tears from our sufferings in this present life and bless us with the love and joy of real Spirit life (Revelation 21:4).
Your friend and servant in Christ,
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