Well, greetings everybody. I'd better wait until I get this microphone on, so you can hear me. So once again I'll say, "Greetings, everybody." It's been just about eleven years since I've been here, and I'm glad to be back in Melbourne once again. You have a lovely city here, and you also have quite a little larger number here than we had last time I was here. We've been growing, and I hope we have been growing spiritually as well as in numbers.
I think I have a very important message for you today. I want to speak on how you and I both came to be here. Jesus Christ started the Church a little over 1950 years ago (or just about that) in the year 31 A.D. The Church jumped the track of the truth that He had given them between 53 and 70 A.D. The true gospel of Jesus was suppressed. A false counterfeit was substituted. Instead of preaching the message that Christ brought, they preached about the person of the Messenger. You've heard a lot about Christ; and Jesus Himself said many would come saying that He (Jesus) is the Christ, but deceiving the many. And that's been happening now for more than 1900 years. It's happening all over the world today.
I think I saw out front, as we were coming, some people with some banners talking about a religion of fear. Well, let me tell you, the religion I want to bring you is one of faith, and one of hope, and one of a coming world peace such as no one dreams of, and one where everyone who ever did live (and everyone who lives today) is going to have a great opportunity to come into that world peace and come to have everlasting life. It's just as far from fear as it's possible to get. It's too bad that some people can't know the truth, but this is a very deceived world that we live in.
Well, the true Church (as I said) jumped the track of God's truth that Christ had given us. Now Christ gave us that truth through the apostles. Christ talked to many of the people. He preached to thousands while He was here, many thousands. But of all the many, many thousands to whom He preached, only 120 believed what He said (as you find in Acts the 1st chapter and the 15th verse). Very few people ever believed Him, and that's too bad. People don't believe God. But why do people believe what they do today?
Now the Church had to go underground by 70 A.D. All history of the Church had been sabotaged and has been missing ever since. We came to what is known as the lost century, so far as Church history is concerned. For about 100 years, there is no historic record of what happened at all. And about 100 years later (about 150-170 A.D.) we find a church calling itself "Christian" but just about as far from the Church that Christ had started as you could get. It was the Babylonian Mystery religion that had come in and taken over. They had taken the name of Christ and called themselves "Christian." They had borrowed one thing of Christ that the Babylonian Mystery religion had not had, and that was grace for the remission of sin. But they turned grace into license to disobey. They did away with the law of God. They had done away with the message of Christ — the Kingdom of God.
The true Church had gone underground. The true Church continued on. But it was persecuted. It was small in numbers. They had to meet often secretly. Sometimes they had to flee. Hundreds and even thousands were martyred. They were persecuted for their beliefs. They had to flee through the mountains of Europe and even of Asia. We come on down ...
Now let me tell you how they got the truth. The truth came from Jesus Christ, and Christ got it from God. Jesus said He had spoken nothing of Himself. He is the Word. He had said nothing of Himself the Father who sent Him — God the Father — had told Him what to say and what to speak. Now He called His apostles, and He taught them; and the Church got the truth through the apostles. That's the way the Church got the truth. Now a generation or two later, the apostles weren't there.
I wonder if you ever heard of a game. I think they used to call it the whispering game. I don't remember the name of it. I played it many, many, many years ago, when I was a young man. You get a group of people (oh 15, 18, 20 people) around in a line. One starts a little sentence of maybe, say 10 or 12 words, and he whispers it to the first one. That one listens, and then he whispers that sentence to the one next to him. And that one whispers the sentence as he thought he heard it to the one next to him. It keeps going on to the end of the line. By the time you get to the end of the line, the one who heard it says what he thought he heard; and it's as far from the sentence the way it started out as you could get.
Now when you get truth from man to man, and man gets it from other men, it gets distorted as it goes along. You hear a rumor. You get it 2nd hand, 3rd hand, 4th hand; and every time it gets twisted a little bit. Even the true Church had gotten its message that way. Now there were no Bibles at all extant. There was no printing. That came about 4-500 years ago. Even after printing came, a Bible was so rare they had to have a chained Bible so that people would come one at a time and look at it and pass on, but they couldn't take it with them. There weren't enough copies.
Well, they did have Bibles for a while; but they were all hand-written. But even after printing, it was some time before there were enough Bibles. It's only in the last 100 to 150 to 200 years that enough Bibles have been printed so most people can have it. Today the Bible is the world's number one seller. There are more Bibles in more homes (and more other places where a Bible might be) than any other book today. And yet the Bible is probably one of the least read. It certainly is the least understood. It is the MOST distorted, maligned, twisted, perverted of any book that has ever been written; and people simply do not understand it.
Now, where did the apostle Paul get his truth? The apostle Paul had been trying to persecute the Church, even to the extent of having them killed and martyred. He was assenting to the stoning and the martyrdom of the first martyr, Stephen. He was, at least, agreeing with it. But Jesus Christ, who had ascended to heaven, had been given ALL POWER in heaven and in earth. And Jesus Christ is the head of the Church, although He is in heaven. And Jesus Christ struck the apostle Paul down with blindness. He fell down. He was on a walk toward Damascus. He knew immediately that something had happened to him.
Christ spoke to him, and others with him; and told them to take him (although he was now blind) into Damascus, where a man was going to show him what to do. That woke him up, and he realized that everything he'd been believing was just the opposite of the truth. Paul later stated (in some of his writings in the New Testament) that he had been with Christ, that he had seen Christ actually. He also mentioned that he had been over in Arabia for three years, and that is the place where Christ in person saw him, taught him what he had. Everything that he had believed before was erased from his mind, and he started ALL OUT NEW and afresh with the truth of God.
When he came back from Arabia, he went over to Jerusalem to compare with the apostles who had been taught by Christ when He was here in physical person (before His crucifixion) to see if they were speaking the same thing — because Paul had been instructed by Christ that we must ALL speak the same thing; and that "same thing" must come from God, through Christ, through an apostle, to us. That's the way they got it. That's the way we have to get it today. And when Paul came to Jerusalem, he talked to Peter and others there and found he had been told the same thing by the same Christ that they had been told, and they had absolute harmony and agreement. He wanted to be sure that they all had the same truth — direct from Christ.
All right, since then, Christ in person has not spoken to any man. The next generation got the truth from those that had gotten it from the apostles. The 2nd generation and the 3rd generation got it from the generation just before them. And like the whispering game, they got a little less of it; and they got it a little bit twisted. So the truth and the doctrines in the Church (even in the true Church, now I'm talking about) became twisted and mixed up a little bit; and they began to loose a lot of the original truth. Now it's hard to believe that; but that is what actually happened, my brethren.
In the meantime, of course, the big church was going on — ruling over governments, and was part of the governments of this world. Now nearly all persecution has always come from government; and today it's coming from the media, the public media (the press, radio, and television as well as from government). You can search all you want, and that's where you'll find the persecution is coming from.
It was the government that persecuted Christ. You say the Pharisees persecuted Him. Yes, but they were in the government. They had lowly positions in the government of the Roman Empire. The Roman Empire was letting them do all of the minor work of ruling the government so that they didn't have to have too many administrators over in the land of Palestine.
Now that is the way it came on down. If I can get that light just right. I don't see much of you out there. I just see the light up here. I vaguely see you out there. I know you are there. But I couldn't see a single individual of you, to recognize you. However, I'll go on speaking to you just the same. All right; now then, I came among ...
God first opened my mind, to look into the Bible and to study it, in the fall of 1926 when I was challenged both on the doctrine of evolution — which is taught in the colleges and universities of this world, and which is the eyeglasses (you might say) through which they see all truth today. Now the truth they know today is all mechanical, physical, materialistic. They have no spiritual truth whatsoever. The natural human mind cannot receive spiritual truth unless it is revealed, and it can be revealed only by the Holy Spirit of God. Very few have ever had the Holy Spirit of God, or very few have it today.
But when I came among them, I came to see the truth in the Bible; and I want to tell you a little of my experience. Now Jesus Christ was the Word of God in person. The Bible is the Word of God in writing, in print. It's the same Word of God. The Bible is the same Word of God and the same Words that taught Peter, the original apostles, and then taught the apostle Paul. But after that other people got it from the people that they had taught, and the next generation got it from the 2nd generation. The 4th generation got it from the 3rd generation, until they lost a lot of the original truth.
Now I'd been brought up in a Protestant church; and, when I first began to be challenged on the law of God and the Sabbath of God (as well as on the doctrine of evolution), at first I came to wonder if there even was a God. I had to PROVE whether God exists. But to my mind it was proved! I found absolute proof that God does exist.
The next thing is the Bible, the medium by which God reveals Himself to us and speaks to us. Now I had been in business for a number of years; and I knew, of course, that every manufacturer who has a product (a commodity that he sells) sends along with his product a little instruction book or an instruction manual to show you what the product is, how it operates, how to operate it, what its purpose is, how to make it perform its purpose.
Alright, the greatest product every created or put together is the human being, and God is the Manufacturer of the human being; and God sent along an Instruction Manual. The Bible is that Instruction Manual. He tells us what we are, why we are, what we are here for, how we should live and why, and where we are going, and how to get there. Most people don't know anything about that because they have never understood the Bible. The Bible is written in a way that it is mysterious to the world.
Now the Bible is concerned with two things primarily. Of course, it has materialistic physical knowledge. It is speaking to material people, made of the dust of the ground. Therefore, it speaks to them in a language that they should be able to understand; the only language that they can understand, as a matter of fact.
Human beings have accomplished a great many things in this Twentieth Century. We've flown to the moon and back. We've sent unmanned spacecraft to send back photographs right on the very close-up surface of Mars. We have close-up photographs sent back to the Earth from Saturn and Jupiter. We have manufactured some marvelous mechanisms (like the computer, the modern automobile, motion pictures, television) — many, many things that have come, not most of them in my lifetime, because we didn't have any motion picture.
We didn't have any television or radio. In fact, we didn't even have automobiles when I was a little boy. When I was eleven-years-old, no one had ever flown in the air yet. No human being ever had. But while I was eleven, during my ... I was in my twelfth year when I was eleven, and it was during that year that one of the Wright brothers flew about as far as from one end of this auditorium to the other. That was the first flight a human being had ever taken. That's the first flight, and I was eleven-years-old.
Now, we've accomplished many things in a materialistic way. But we have also found our troubles have escalated. And the world is full of troubles and evils, and of suffering of every kind. And all of our problems that we can't solve — all of our troubles and evils — are spiritual in nature. All of our accomplishments are physical and materialistic in nature. But the human mind is so constructed, without the Holy Spirit of God, it CANNOT understand, it CANNOT conceive spiritual truth or spiritual knowledge.
Now the Bible is concerned with physical knowledge, but also with spiritual knowledge — and primarily with spiritual knowledge and spiritual truth; and the natural mind cannot understand that part of the Bible. And that is the main part of the Bible. So they DON'T UNDERSTAND THE BIBLE! They just don't understand it.
I began to see things in the Bible. First I read in Romans 6:23, "The wages of sin is death." I said, "Well, that's not true. I've always been taught the wages of sin is eternal life in hell fire." Then I saw the next part, the last half of the same sentence, "The gift of God is eternal life." Well, I said, "Why should we have to have eternal life as a gift when we are already immortal souls?" Then I began to see that the Bible says, "The soul that sins, it shall die." I began to learn where Jesus said that no man has ever gone to heaven, and where the Bible teaches that no man ever will. The earth has God given to the sons of men, and we shall inherit the earth forever — not heaven. I began to see that what I had been taught was absolutely wrong.
God did something to me that He did to the apostle Paul, way back there 1950 years ago. He just erased everything I had ever believed from my mind, and I started from scratch all over. Brethren, I know of NO OTHER religious leader in the WORLD — in these last 1950 YEARS even (today, or a hundred years ago, or a thousand years ago) — who ever came to his knowledge directly from Jesus Christ!
Jesus Christ gave the truth to the Church through the apostles. The Church got it from the apostles. Other people (the next generation) got it from the apostles. The 2nd generation got it from that generation. The 3rd generation from the 2nd, and finally they lost a lot of it.
Now the true Church still existed, and I came among them in 1927. They are called the Sardis Church in the 3rd chapter of the book of Revelation — the Sardis era of the Church. I found they had lost so much of the knowledge that God was opening to me in the Bible. Christ was speaking to me! This is the Word of God, the same as Jesus Christ in person is the personal Word of God. I was being taught by the same One. I find that other leaders didn't get their knowledge out of this Book, the Bible. They got it from other people.
Now just two or three days ago, the Pope of Rome — the head of the Catholic Church, the biggest church on earth and the largest in Christianity — he was shot in an assassination attempt. Alright, where did the Pope (looked on by many millions of people as the greatest religious leader on earth), where did he get all that he knows about religion? Where did he get his knowledge of what he believes is the truth of God, the doctrines that he teaches his people? He got it from other men. He didn't get it direct from Christ. He didn't get it direct from this Book. He was taught from a child on.
Where did Charles and John Wesley get their knowledge that started the Methodist church? They got it from other people. They got an idea or two of their own that they added, and made it a little bit different religion than the others, and they started the Methodist church. Another man started the Baptist church the same way. They ALL got their religions from other people. Where do ministers get their religion today? They go to a seminary of their particular denomination, or their kind of religion; and there they are taught by other men. And I'll tell you, if you go and examine the seminary, they are not taught by this Word — the Bible.
The time had come at the end for God to raise up someone to raise up the temple that Christ is coming to (That is a spiritual temple, which is the Church.) and to restore THE TRUTH that had been LOST for 1950 years. Well, it was about 1900 years at that time because this was about 54 years ago. But just as it was in the days of the apostle Paul: Let me read you what Paul said, the same thing happened to me. He says here:
Galatians 1:15-16 But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother's womb, and called me by his grace, (16) To reveal his Son in me, that I might preach him among the heathen; immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood.
He didn't go to a seminary. He didn't go to other men. He did not get the truth that he began to proclaim from other people!
Galatians 1:17 Neither went I up to Jerusalem to them which were apostles before me.
Now, I say the same thing. Neither did I, when God began to open my mind, go to other people. I did not go to a religious seminary. I went to this Bible. I began to find that EVERYTHING I'D BEEN TAUGHT WAS WRONG! AND I THREW IT ALL OUT. I began from scratch! Other people don't do that. They take what they have, and they may change one or two ideas. They may grab one or two new truths. Most people won't even do that. Instead of that, they lose one or two truths they already have. It was a different experience. And that's how you came to be here today, and how I came to be here today. I want you to realize that: that God reveals His truth through Christ, and Christ reveals it through those whom He calls to be apostles.
Now, it had gone down; and they had lost ... I found that the Sardis Church still had the truth about the Sabbath day and the law of God to an extent. They didn't have all of the truth even about the law of God. They still had the true name, Church of God. That's all they had. They knew that we don't go to a burning hell if we're wicked. They knew we don't go to heaven. They knew that Christ would come and there would be a thousand year reign on earth; but they had no idea what that thousand year reign would be like. They didn't realize the truth about the Kingdom of God and what it will be like.
We have a whole book on "The World Tomorrow — What It Will Be Like." They didn't know any of those things. God revealed all of that to me. God revealed to me about the annual Sabbaths. When I went to them and taught the Sardis people about that, they laughed me to scorn. God revealed to me the truth of who we are, that we are the lost tribes of Israel and the birthright tribes of Ephraim and of Manasseh. When I went to them about that, they refused to accept a bit of it (although their leader said he knew God had revealed that to me, and it was true, and God would use it some day.) But he couldn't accept it. Because of political reasons, he couldn't accept it for his position in his church. So that church never accepted it.
But God raised up this Church through me, and this Church has accepted those truths. We had gotten rid of the errors, and swept it clean, and come to the truth of God; and that has not been done in 1950 years on the face of this earth. I just wanted you to know that.
Now then, I want to give you some truths that have been hidden from this world for about 1950 years. It is to them a mystery. It's so mysterious they just don't understand it. In a world, there's a gigantic missing dimension in knowledge. The knowledge they teach in schools, and in colleges and universities, is all together materialistic knowledge. It is knowledge just for this present mechanical, materialistic, existence that we have, which is not Life. (But I'm coming to that. Let's go on.)
Man today does not have Life. Man only has a temporary physical, physio-chemical, existence. We are made from the dust of the ground. We get our life through the blood circulating in our veins, through the breath of air; and we have to constantly refuel by eating food and drinking water, usually about three times a day. In other words, we have a temporary existence. It is not life.
Now that's the first point I want you to get. We do not have ... As we are born, we do not have Life. We have a temporary existence, and it comes out of the ground. We are like an alarm clock, wound up, that is constantly running down. When it runs down, it stops. It's dead. In other words, human beings have a temporary existence. They are running down towards death. They are dying gradually every day they live, and every human being is one breath away from absolute death — the cessation of life.
I know. I've gone through it, almost four years ago. My breath stopped. My face was all blanched, a different color. I don't remember because I wasn't conscience. I believe it was blanched white, whatever it was. They brought me back by mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, but for a great many seconds I was not breathing. There was no circulation of blood. My heart was not beating. I was as dead as you can be. But they brought me back. I've gone through that experience. I don't fear death any longer. I just don't. I hope God will keep me alive for a little longer because I believe it is needful for you.
Man does not have REAL LIFE. (I can't even read my own writing here.) No, he doesn't know how to obtain it. He doesn't have real Life, and he doesn't know how to obtain it. All life has to come from God. The very first law of biochemistry, which is a scientific law, is that life comes only from life. Life can't come from dead matter or from the not living. It only comes from other life.
God has Life inherent in Himself — self-containing Life; and He has Life to impart and to give. Now it's important that we understand how all life comes. Everything begins with God, and the world doesn't know anything about God. Do you know that of all the religions in the world — not only Christianity; but you can take Taoism, Shintoism, Mohammedism, all of the religions in the world — and you know not one of them knows who and what God is. They do not know who and what God is!
Alright, let's go a little farther. They don't know what man is, or why he is. They don't know why man was ever put on the earth or how he came to be here. They don't know whether he was put here for a reason, for a purpose. They don't know why or what lies ahead, where we are going, or if we are going anywhere. They just don't know. The religions don't know. Science doesn't know, and education doesn't know and doesn't impart that knowledge. You don't get that in the colleges, or the universities, because they don't know.
Now, if we want to know about God and about the very start of Life, we don't start with Genesis 1:1. We start in the New Testament with John 1 and verse 1.
John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
Alright, "In the beginning was the Word." The Word was a divine, supernatural, spirit-composed personage — a Word that had LIFE, was immortally alive, was inherent self-containing Life. Not a temporary existence, but immortal Life. The Word was a personage. That Word was with another personage called God. There you have two personages together. But the Word also is God. So both of Them are God. But one was just called "God" and the other was called "The Word" originally. Now, the next verse:
John 1:2-3 The same was in the beginning with God. (3) All things were made by him [That is, by the Word.]; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
In Ephesians 3:9 ... Well, now wait. Before I go to that, the 14th verse:
John 1:14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.
The Word became Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is the One who originally HAD ALWAYS EXISTED, and He had existed as God; and He was with God. His name originally was The Word, which means He was the divine Spokesman.
John 1:3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
Now in Ephesians 3: 9, we read that God "created all things by Jesus Christ." God is the Maker. God told Christ what to do. Christ is the Word. He spake, as one of the Psalms says. The Holy Spirit, emanating from God and from Christ, is the POWER that actually did what Christ said to do. That is the way Creation came about. That is the way you and I were formed, made out of dust of the ground, and got our temporary existence that we have.
Now then, let's go a little farther. Remember that God had Life inherent, and this Word had Life. They were composed of Spirit, not of matter; and They are Creators. The first thing that They created was angels. There was no matter. There was no universe. There was nothing physical. There was no matter. But They created angels first.
Now let's go a little farther. I want you to notice in Genesis 1:1 now (the 1st chapter of Genesis, and verse 1) — the beginning of the Bible:
Genesis 1:1 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
That should be the plural. As Moses wrote it in the Hebrew language, this word is plural — heavens. He created the heavens (That's the entire universe.) and the earth.
Now the word here says "God." That's an English word. Moses wrote in the Hebrew language, and the word Moses wrote was "Elohim" in the Hebrew language; and Elohim means ... It is a uni-plural word meaning more than one person forming one God. It's a word like family, like group. There can be a number of people forming a group, but it is still one group. You can have two people, you can have five people, in a family — more than one person; but it is only one family (the Jones family, the Smith family, the Anderson family): One family, but more than one person.
There is one GOD, and ONLY ONE GOD; but that one God is composed of more than one personage! The Word is one of those personages, from all eternity; and the other (called God) is a personage.
Now, Jesus was born of the Virgin Mary and was made flesh. He — the Word — now came as a human being. He gave up all of His divine great power, and came to be a mortal human being; but He still was God as well as man. He was "God with us." And then God the Father became His Father, after Jesus was born as a human being (begotten of God, and born of the Virgin Mary).
God created the whole universe. He created matter. "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth." Turn to the 2nd chapter of Genesis and verse 4.
Genesis 2:4 These are the generations of the heavens [plural] and of the earth [See, the heavens and the earth] when they [Both the heavens and the earth. That's the whole universe, including the earth.] were created, in the day that the [Eternal] God made the earth and the heavens.
IN THE SAME DAY He made the earth and the heavens. Now that may have been billions of years ago. We don't know how far back that was. But there is one thing we do know that the Bible does reveal. Most people have never found, because you don't get all of the Bible in one place. It's like a jigsaw puzzle, a little of it ... You have many pieces, and you have to put all the pieces together, so one of the pieces is here. Another piece is over in the book of Job, in the 38th chapter and beginning with verse 1.
Let me read you a little of that, in Job the 38th chapter, where Job had just created the greatest building on earth — the great pyramid. Job was the master craftsman that hired all of the men and supervised the building of the great pyramid. He did it for a pharaoh of Egypt. He was not a pharaoh. He was not an Egyptian at all. But he was a very great man, and he was a very self-righteous man; and finally God was speaking to him and sort of whittling him down to size because he was very self-righteous.
Job 38:1 Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind, and said [to Job] ...
Job 38:4 Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth?
Job had laid the foundations of the greatest building on earth, but God (Jesus) had laid the foundations of the ENTIRE EARTH! - The One who became the God of the Old Testament. In the Hebrew, it was called Yahweh. It is here called "the LORD."
Job 38:4 Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? Declare, if you have understanding.
Job 38:6 Whereupon are the foundations thereof [of the earth]fastened? Or who laid the corner stone thereof?
Now the only building on earth where the cornerstone is the top capstone (the last stone to be laid) is the great pyramid. And, actually, that top capstone never was laid. It isn't there. But on the earth it was laid (but not on the great pyramid). "Where were you when I laid the cornerstone thereof?"
Job 38:7 When the morning stars [or angels] sang together, and all the sons of God [And the only "sons of God" at that time were the angels, because He created them. And all the angels ... ] shouted for joy?
So the angels had already been created before the earth. The earth was created the same time as the rest of the universe and all of the galaxies, the entire universe; and there they were at the earth, and shouting for joy. Why? Because the earth was to become their abode, and they were to be put here and to live here on the earth! It was very beautiful as God originally created it. But now they did something to it; and they marred it, so that it was not beautiful any longer.
Alright, God now was going to develop character into the angels. He put them here to improve the earth, and to even make it more beautiful. In the earth, of course, was matter; and some of that matter contains energy. There's a lot of energy in the material earth. They were to do things with the earth to improve it, and really to finish it (although it was beautiful as God turned it over to them).
But God put the angels on earth; and, in order to supervise their lives together one with another, God set over them His government. Now God has LIFE. God lives. The next question is: HOW DOES GOD LIVE? He lives the way of out-flowing love. There are different ways you can live; and primarily there are just two different philosophies, or ways of life. I call one the way of "give" — out-flowing love. The other is incoming lust, and incoming greed, and coveting; and I call that "get" (so that even a little child can understand it). God's way is out-flowing love.
Now, He has a law; and that law is love. There are two divisions of God's law. That is, love to God is the first part of it, in worship and in obedience; and also love to your fellow creatures by out-flowing love towards them, cooperation, helping, serving, sharing with them altogether.
Now the opposite way, then, is rebellion against God and fighting against your neighbor, trying to take away from him and get from him, get everything for yourself, trying to have all you can and get, the way of competition, the way of strife, the way of what we have on this earth (so much of today), violence, and destruction.
God set a throne on this earth, and He set a super archangel on that throne to govern the angels. That archangel's name was Lucifer. He was the super archangel, of a higher grade of creation than the ordinary angels. He had been on the very throne of God. His wings had covered over the very throne of God in heaven. He had been instructed by God, and he knew the way of God — the way of love.
Every government is based on a foundation, a constitution, or a basic law. Now what do you have in Australia? I don't know. In the United States, we have a Constitution; and ALL LAWS have to be based on that Constitution. It's the basic law. Other laws are based on it.
The law of God is out-flowing love — love to God, love to your fellow beings. And then you can define it. In the case of men, it finally was codified in the Ten Commandments. The first four tell you how to love God: The last six, how to love your neighbor. That is the law of God.
Alright, now in the 14th chapter of Isaiah, you'll find about this Lucifer — how he was put on earth. His name was Lucifer. And, let's see, Isaiah 14. (I don't think I have it. No, I've got it wrong ... Here I have it.)
Isaiah 14:12-13 How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! ... (13) For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven [So he was below heaven. He was on the earth.], I will exalt my throne above the stars of God ...
He had a throne. There was a throne on earth, and he was sitting on it TO RULE THE WHOLE EARTH with the government of God! And the government of God was founded on a constitution, which is the law of God, the way of give, the way of out-flowing love.
Isaiah 14:13-14 I will exalt my throne above the stars [or angels] of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north [where God's throne is — in the far, far north. That's the only thing we have in the Bible that tells us anything about where God's throne is, God's heaven.]. (14) I will ascend above the heights of the clouds [So he was below clouds. He was on earth!]; I will be like the most High. [Or, he was going to become the Most High.]
Now you read more about him in Ezekiel 28, and beginning with verse 14, where it says:
Ezekiel 28:14-15 Thou art the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have set thee so: thou wast upon the holy mountain of God ... [And verse 15:] (15) Thou wast perfect in thy ways [all thy ways] from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee.
God created him, and he was perfect in the way he lived UNTIL he turned away from the way of God and REBELLED. Rebellion seized him, jealousy, envy against God, competition, strife. He wanted to war against God; and he turned his angels into an army, and they swooped up to heaven to knock God off the throne. He wanted to rule. He wanted to rule the entire universe. He wasn't satisfied with this one little earth down here. He wanted everything! (We have too many men like that today.)
Now he was perfect from the day he was created. He was not a born human being. He was a created archangel. And iniquity was found in him. His heart was lifted up because of his beauty.
Ezekiel 28:17 Thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness.
He became perverted in mind and everything. Lucifer then became Satan the devil, and his angels all became demons. As a result of their violence and their wrong way, physical destruction and decay came to this earth. Instead of beautifying the earth, they made it ugly; and it came to a very decayed state.
Now his angels sinned along with him. In II Peter 2:4 you read, "if God spared not the angels that sinned." So God didn't spare them either. The angels all sinned and followed Lucifer. Now there came to be darkness and decay on the face of the earth. Now we go back to Genesis 1 again — the 1st chapter of Genesis and in verse 2:
Genesis 1:2 The earth was [Or, became. That same word is translated "became" elsewhere] without form, and void ...
The Hebrew words Moses wrote were "tohu" and "bohu." A better translation than "without form and void" would be "chaotic and in confusion," "waste and empty" or "desolate and decayed." That is not the original created state at all! That is the way it became after the angels had been here, and they may have been here millions of years. We don't know. We don't know how long they were here before they went the wrong way.
Now, the earth then came into a very devastated state and condition and very ugly. In the 104th Psalm and verse 30:
Psalm 104:30 Thou sendest forth thy spirit, they are created: and thou renewest the face of the earth.
Psalm 104, verse 30 — God sends forth His Spirit, and He renews the face of the earth. The Spirit goes forth, and He does His creating. Now go back to Genesis 1. The earth had become in this chaotic condition.
Genesis 1:2-3 And darkness was upon the face of the deep. [It was all ocean surface, no land. All was ocean, and it was chaotic.] And the spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. [Now, He sent forth His Spirit. Then the Word speaks.] (3) And God said [That was the Word who did the saying.], Let there be light: [The Holy Spirit came forth.] and there was light.
Now, in six days God RENEWED the face of the earth FOR MAN! Now God was going to create man out of matter! He had created angels. He had set His government over them. They (1/3rd of them) had turned wrong and followed Satan. Now God was going to do the most ... the greatest feat of creation possible.
God was going to reproduce Himself. He was going to take dirt, matter (made out of matter, material earth). He was going to form and shape it into a man in the same form and shape as God. Out of that man, ultimately, He was going to have man reproduce; and out of all of the millions of men that would be reproduced, He was going to ultimately convert millions of them into God Beings — just like God Himself. (No religion on earth understands this. No religion understands it whatever.)
In six days, God remade the surface of the earth for man. In verse 26 of Genesis 1:
Genesis 1:26 God said, Let us [Not "Me." You see, it's Elohim, more than one person forming God — God and the Word. "Let us ... "] make man in our image, after our likeness.
Animals were made after their own kind — cattle after the cattle kind, dogs after the dog kind. But now He was making man after the God kind, altogether different. But how did He form man? God is made of Spirit, but not man. In the 7th verse of the 2nd chapter of Genesis:
Genesis 2:7 The [Eternal] God formed man out of the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man [what He formed out of the ground] became a living soul.
So a soul came out of the ground! A soul is not an immortal soul. A soul is mortal and comes out of the ground. THAT'S WHAT GOD SAID. The devil said, "Oh, no. You won't surely die. You are an immortal soul." The churches today all believe that. They believe the devil. They don't believe God. But God made the soul out of the dust of the earth.
Genesis 2:8-9 The [Eternal] God planted a garden eastward in Eden [In the very next verse here.]; and there he put the man whom he had formed. (9) And out of the ground made the [Eternal] God to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of [the] knowledge of good and evil.
Two special trees! There were a lot of other trees; but these two are very special, and they are symbolic; the Tree of Life that symbolized the Spirit of God. If Adam had taken of that, he could have taken immortal Life. Now remember, Adam was only created out of the dust of the ground with a physio-chemical temporary existence; a physical, physio-chemical existence, out of the dust of the ground. Now let's drop down to verse 15:
Genesis 2:15-17 The [Eternal] God took the man, and put him into the Garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it. (16) And the [Eternal] God commanded the man, saying, of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: (17) But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for [if you eat of it] you shall surely die.
Now, He gave him freely the Tree of Life! All he had to do was reach out and take it, and he would have had immortal Life. But God was not going to let him do that unless he denied and made a choice between that and the other Tree.
The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil simply represented the way Satan had been living. Satan did not agree with God's way of living. God's way of living is out-flowing love. The Tree of Life would have given him the love of God shed abroad in his heart — the love to fulfill that law. The Tree of Life would have given him the Holy Spirit that would have opened his mind to spiritual knowledge, so he would know HOW TO LIVE spiritually. The Tree of Life would have imparted divine Life to him!
But He made man — man and woman — "male and female created He them," and He told them to reproduce and replenish the earth. It had been "plenished" before with angels. He said, "and replenish the earth." [Genesis 1:27-28]
Now let me tell you a little something right here. Do you know how you came into being? Every one of you originally started with an ovum in your mother's ovary, in one of the ovaries of your mother. That ovum had only a temporary, physical existence — just a short existence of not more than 28 days. It could not have existed longer than 28 days. Every time an ovum left your mother's ovary, by the time it went through the fallopian tube and got into your mother's uterus (or womb) it died there unless it had been fertilized by a male sperm cell.
God made it so that the male and the female work together. The male's sperm cell, coming from the very body of the male, a sperm cell is only 1/50th of the size of an ovum. An ovum is only the size of a pinpoint, the same as a period at the end of a sentence of ordinary small type in a newspaper. The sperm cell coming from the human father, to give it physical human existence and reproduction, is only 1/50th as large; but it imparts life. If that life is imparted within that 28 days, then that ovum becomes an embryo. And that's what you became and what I became (every one of us) in our mother's womb. For 4 months we were an embryo.
At the end of 4 months we became a fetus, and we had begun to take on human form and shape in our mother's womb. A head began to appear. Arms and legs began to appear. A heart began to form, and lungs and other organs in the body. They began to develop over the next 5 months until you had come ready to be born. You came out into the world, and you were born. You gave a cry of "Whaaa, whaa" when you were first born because that first breath hurt your lungs. Also with that first breath came a spirit into you that imparted the power of intellect to the physical brain that had been born and that had grown within your mother.
Now then, during that 9 months that you were first an embryo and then a fetus, you had to be fed on physical food to grow large enough to be born. That came through your mother. We today are in the Church, and the Church is "Jerusalem ... above ... the mother of us all" your Bible says. [Galatians 4:26] So the Church is the mother of us all. The duty of the Church is to feed and nourish the brethren in the Church on SPIRITUAL FOOD. We have to grow spiritually. (I'm going to come to more of that, if I don't forget it, later. I want to explain that.)
But, you see, there is physical reproduction.
Now God is reproducing Himself, and that is SPIRITUAL REPRODUCTION. God made us. Listen, that ovum coming out of your mother's ovary, it had a nucleus in it. Each of us is an ovum; and each of us has a nucleus, and that's the physical brain. But there is a spirit in that physical brain. That spirit in man — I call it a human spirit, because it is in man and is not in animals — imparts the power of intellect that brute animals don't have. (We call them dumb animals.) But it only empowers you to think and reason about physical, material, things because it acts as a computer and it stores up the knowledge you have, and it gives you instant recall of all of the knowledge that you have.
But how do you obtain knowledge? You obtain knowledge through the eye (things you see), through the ear ... Now the spirit doesn't see. The spirit in you doesn't hear. The brain hears through the ear. The brain sees through the eye. The brain smells through the nose. You only get knowledge then through what you see, or hear, or smell, or taste, or feel (by the sense of touch). You can't get any other kind of knowledge in your mind normally and naturally. You just can't.
You can't see spirit. You can't hear spirit. You can't taste it, smell it, or feel it. So you can't get spiritual knowledge in your mind, and it can't come unless you have God's Spirit. Now the coming of God's Spirit is the coming of the sperm cell from the very body of God into you, and that comes in with the spirit in your brain and enlightens your brain now to understand spiritual knowledge.
No wonder the people in the world don't understand spiritual knowledge. You know that the most highly educated people in the world, with the greatest degrees of letter after their names, are the most ignorant — because they don't have any spiritual knowledge. They've been educated in a lot of materialistic knowledge. They don't have any knowledge of spiritual things. ALL OF OUR PROBLEMS AND TROUBLES AND EVILS ARE SPIRITUAL in nature and so they can't solve them. The greatest minds can't solve our problems in this world. That's where our troubles come from.
Now God is reproducing Himself. The way He reproduces is the Holy Spirit is the sperm cell from God that imparts immortal GOD-LIFE into us. That was offered to Adam, but Adam first had to decide he would LIVE that Life in the way of God of out-flowing love to help him be happy: Out-flowing love towards others that would help him make his neighbors happy. His neighbors could only have it too if they would have that spirit of love, which would make him happy and make them happy; and we would all help one another. We would have peace. We would have cooperation. We would help our neighbors to produce more. They would help us to produce more. We would share, and we would all have much more. Oh, how much more we could have if we lived that way; and we would have a utopia; and we would have peace.
But, no, man has got to fight his neighbor. Man has to live the other way. That's the way Satan showed. Adam let his wife Eve lead him to take to himself, of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. That meant he decided for himself the way of life. The Holy Spirit would have showed him GOD'S WAY OF LIFE, would have opened his mind to understand the SPIRITUAL KNOWLEDGE of God's way of life.
Adam rejected that and instead took to himself the idea that whatever knowledge he could produce in himself of how he thought he ought to live. And there was Satan there to lead him in the way of competition, the way of strife, the way of hostility, the way of vanity, the way of glorifying the self, the way of selfishness, and of lust, and of greed, of vanity, of envy and jealousy towards others. And that's the way humanity has been living ever since. That's where our problems are. That's where our troubles are.
Now then, God intended that man should take of the Tree of Life. It was freely offered to Adam, but he had to reject the way of Satan! He could have restored the government of God to earth and Adam could have sat on that throne of the whole earth, and ruled it over his own children. But instead he went the way of Satan.
Now then, what happened? In Genesis 3 and verse 22, after Adam made that decision:
Genesis 3:22 The [Eternal] God said ... now, lest [Adam] put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever ...
If he did that, he would live forever in the way that was making him unhappy, the way that would make him miserable, the way that would bring sorrow, that would bring suffering and pain and anguish on him and on his neighbor. And his neighbor would live that way and bring pain and suffering on themselves and on Adam. And every man would harm and make every other man unhappy. And, lest he do that and live forever in that kind of misery and unhappiness:
Genesis 3:23-24 Therefore the [Eternal] God sent him forth from the garden of Eden ... (24) ... and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword [pointing every way], to keep the way of the tree of life.
GOD SHUT UP THE TREE OF LIFE! GOD SHUT THE HOLY SPIRIT OFF FROM MANKIND.
Adam sinned; and that cut him off from God. Adam's son, Cain, sinned and killed his brother, Abel and then he lied to God about it. He brought on himself the penalty of death, and shut himself off from the Spirit of God. He shut himself off from God. God didn't shut Himself off from man, but man shut himself off from God. But God shut up the Holy Spirit — the giving of Life to man; and all man can have now is a temporary physio-chemical existence until the Second Adam could come. That's until Jesus Christ could come.
Now right here is where Christianity jumps the track. Life — the Holy Spirit — was shut up until the Second Adam could come and pay the penalty of man's sin in his stead and reconcile man to God, wipe the slate clean so that man could RECEIVE the Spirit of God, when man would start to live the right way to have eternal Life in happiness and in peace.
The churches don't know that. The churches of this world don't know it. The religions of this world don't know it. Humanity doesn't know it. Our educators don't know it in your colleges and universities. The scientists don't know it. Your captains of industry, your bankers, and your industrialists don't know it. They only know material, physical things and business, manufacturing out of material goods and things like that. That's all they know. So here's where they jump the track — "until the time of the Second Adam."
Alright, now then we want to turn over to Hebrews the 9th chapter and verse 27.
Hebrews 9:27 And as it is appointed unto men once to die ...
God said to Adam, "If you take of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, you will surely die." He did. He was like an alarm clock running down. He ran down after 930 years, and then he died. He only lived 930 years, and he never got Life in all that time. So, it says:
Hebrews 9:27 And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment [by a resurrection].
Other scriptures point that out, and tell us that ALL who died in Adam are going to be resurrected in Christ and are going to come to a judgment. When? After Christ has paid for our sins, they will have a chance to give account for what they had done; and, if they repent, they will be given a time to prove their repentance and that they want to live God's way by a certain amount of time, whatever God will give them, in mortal life. And, if they do, they will have the Holy Spirit and be given immortal Life. That's the kind of "a religion of fear" that we believe in. I wish that some poor simpletons, like people with signs out front, could understand some of the truths of God. Too bad!
Now, judgment was on Adam; but he made the wrong choice. When judgment comes on people, they have to make a choice; and they have to determine which way they are going to go. LIFE was offered to Adam, but he made the wrong decision; and eternal Life was withdrawn until the Second Adam, Christ. So we read in I Corinthians 15 now, and verse 22 (if I can find it here).
I Corinthians 15:22 As in Adam all die [We all die. We have this temporary physical existence, and we all die in Adam.], even so in Christ shall ALL be made alive [in a resurrection to judgment].
It's appointed to man once to die, and after this THE JUDGMENT; and that will come by a resurrection through Christ: (Through Christ.)
I Corinthians 15:23 But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits [He rose from the dead 1950 some years ago.], afterward they that are Christ's at his coming.
That's only the Church, only the few that are going to be resurrected to immortal Life at Christ's coming. Now I'm coming to more about that in just a minute. I have to cover these things one at a time, to show you what God's whole program and plan is in a way that I think you've never heard it put this way before.
Adam and universal sin cut humans off from ... Well, God cut us off from the Holy Spirit or from Life until the judgment. But, through Christ, judgment has been opened first to the Church of God. Judgment is on us, and we are given an opportunity to repent and accept the sacrifice of Christ, have our sins forgiven, and now the Holy Spirit is open to us. I Peter 4 and verse 17:
I Peter 4:17 For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God [or the Church of God. That is the "house of God."]
We are the first. We are the firstfruits and the first to have salvation. The world as a whole does not have it yet. Now understand this: Through Adam (try to understand this, brethren) through Adam the world was cut off from the Holy Spirit. But through Christ judgment and access to the Holy Spirit was opened up to the CHURCH, and not to any but the Church!
Now I want to show you something — a prophecy back in the book of Joel. Joel 2 and in verse 28, where Joel (an Old Testament prophet) made this prophecy:
Joel 2:28 It shall come to pass afterward, [says God] that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh.
God shut up the Holy Spirit after Adam's sin; but the time would come when He would pour out His Spirit on all flesh. Now first judgment starts on the Church, after Christ; and it only started at the time of Christ, and only on the Church. Now there's something more there I've got to come to right away. On the day of Pentecost, in Acts 2 and verse 17, Peter was giving a sermon; and he said this. The Holy Spirit, which they saw coming as flames of fire sitting on the heads of each of them, they heard the sound like a rushing mighty wind, and they were quite excited as the Holy Spirit came that day — the first time the Holy Spirit had been opened up since Adam. And he said:
Acts 2:16 This is that which was [prophesied] by the prophet Joel ...
And he quoted the scripture of the prophesy I just read that the days would come when God would open; He would pour out His Spirit upon all flesh. Now then, that was only the start — just to the Church only.
Physical existence now began with Adam. Well wait a minute; before I come to that I want to mention this: that God called the Church of the Old Testament; but the Holy Spirit had not been poured out yet, and they did not have Life. They did not have the Holy Spirit. They had the knowledge of God. They had the law of God. That was spiritual but they were carnal, and they never did comprehend it and they never did obey it spiritually. They just never did. And they had no Life.
They are to be resurrected. They died, and "after this the resurrection." Judgment will come to them in the Great White Throne Judgment. We celebrate that on the last day, after the great Feast of Tabernacles — on the Last Great Day.
Now, physical existence began with Adam. But LIFE — or eternal Life — began with Christ. Israel was a type, or duality, and was given the seven annual festivals to picture this whole Life.
The Passover, for instance, pictures the sacrifice of Christ to pay the penalty for ... [A loud crashing noise was heard.] What was that? Are you hearing me all right? [Someone in the audience answers, "Yes."] I thought something had happened to the microphone here or something. Anyway, (I have to catch my place, where I was, here for a minute.) the Passover pictures the crucified Christ so that our sins can be paid in our stead, making it possible (if we do repent, and if we believe) that we can now receive the Spirit of God.
Now the second annual festival, or the seven Days of Unleavened Bread, which we had a little over two weeks ago; and that pictures putting sin out of our lives. That pictures the fact that we must begin to GROW SPIRITUALLY. We must be fed on spiritual knowledge. Now we have a SPIRIT LIFE, and that must begin to grow in us.
Then the third festival is the time of the coming of the Holy Spirit. We can't put sin out of your lives alone, by ourselves. We have to have the help of God and the Holy Spirit. And we are the firstfruits. The day of Pentecost is merely, it was called originally in the Old Testament the feast of firstfruits; and we are the firstfruits — showing that God has called the Church and the Church only, FIRST. Not the whole world! Now Jesus said:
John 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which sent me draws him.
Now get that! The world cannot have salvation now. It has not been opened up. It is only those that were predestinated to be called now. Others will be called. Everyone who ever lived is going to have a chance! Everyone is going to be called. Everyone can find eternal Life, who ever lived.
I don't know whether Adam had his whole judgment then, or whether he'll have a chance in the Great White Throne Judgment. I don't know. But nevertheless, everyone will have had a chance; and either Adam did have, or he will have.
The fourth annual festival is the first day of the 7th month, the Feast of Trumpets. That pictures the Second Coming of Christ. The Church will then be born, as He was, by a resurrection at Christ's coming; and we will be God Beings, the same as Christ is. We will then rule the world, when He will begin to convert all that are still alive (in this mortal life) on earth. That will reign for a thousand years. They'll be having children, and population will grow during that thousand years.
The Millennium: The Feast of Tabernacles pictures that thousand-year rule and reign with Christ. Satan will be put ... Well, I skipped one. The fifth is the Day of Atonement. That means the putting of Satan away so that Christ and the Kingdom of God can rule a thousand years. That's the fifth of the festivals.
The sixth is the Feast of Tabernacles, or the thousand-year reign with Christ on earth — the Kingdom of God ruling; and the seventh is Day of Judgment at the end of the thousand years, when ALL who have ever lived are going to be resurrected, and they are going to have their chance to repent of the way they did. They are going to be called to give an account for every evil thing they ever did. But, if they repent, they are going to find that the blood of Christ has already paid the penalty in their stead. They will be given a little time to see if they mean it, if they say they want to live the way of THE LAW OF GOD — the way of out-flowing love. They'll have to prove it by their performance.
Now we come to Hebrews 9 and verse 27: "As it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment." I read that once before.
We are called now. Those of us called now, you'll read in Ephesians 2 and verse 1, have been "dead in trespasses and sins." In other words, we have been dying every day we lived. We have only had a physical existence up to this time. But now we are going to have a chance to have the Spirit of God. The Spirit of God will open our minds to understand the Word of God and the way to live — according to God's way of out-flowing love. The Spirit of God will be the love of God in our hearts to fulfill that law. The Spirit of God will be the POWER of God to help us to overcome Satan and to live that way. And the Spirit of God will impart to us divine God-Life! We will rule with Christ as God Beings.
But the thing I want to point out is this: the Church is called first, now; and we start a new Life. It's beginning... just as you were born, you started a physical life. We start a new SPIRITUAL LIFE from the time the Holy Spirit comes into us. The Holy Spirit in us opens our mind to understand the SPIRITUAL TRUTHS in the Bible.
The world cannot understand. God is only CALLING A FEW NOW! A few that are predestinated: As Christ said: no man could come to Him except God the Father draws him, and God is only drawing a few. Judgment is not come to the world. The chance of the world to understand these things has not come. God's Spirit cannot be poured out on the world as a whole at this time; but only on those that are called — in the Church. Brethren, I wonder if you realize what a precious thing it is that we, of all the people in the world, have been called out from the world.
Now the word "Church" comes from the Greek word "ecclesia." It means a group, but it also means "called out ones" — called out from the world to be separate in this way. Not to be separate to wear a funny kind of hat or a garment. Not to be separate in physical things; but to be separate in understanding the spiritual truth of God, in understanding the way of Life of God — out-flowing love towards others. We have to express that, and we have to grow.
We have to GROW in grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. Just as I explained to you how we grew in our mother's womb before we are born, so now in the SPIRITUAL REPRODUCTION, we have to grow in spiritual truth. The Church is the mother that feeds us, and we have to grow spiritually day-by-day.
Now in the world they feel that if (Christianity feels that if) you just accept Christ, hocus-pocus you'll be saved. You can live any old way you want to the rest of your life; and, when you die, you're going to go to heaven. Now that's all wrong. In the first place, no one's going to heaven. In the second place, just receiving Christ alone isn't enough. You have to repent of your sins. You have to begin to WALK with Christ; and two can't walk together except they be agreed. You'd better begin to agree with Christ to walk with Him. The world is not walking in THAT WAY, but we are to walk that way.
We are being fed and nourished. God has raised up this Church at this time in order that we will be in that first resurrection and will become God Beings in the Kingdom of God. And the Kingdom of God is the Family of God, which will RULE with the government of God. When Christ comes, He will RESTORE THE GOVERNMENT OF GOD on the earth (that Lucifer took away). The government of God has not been operative on earth since Lucifer rebelled.
The government of God is operative on earth and administered only one place, and that is in this Church; and that is GOVERNMENT IN THE CHURCH, and it comes from God the Father. From God the Father it comes through Christ. And from Christ it comes from the apostle that He Himself has chosen, and that He PREPARED, and that He educated, and He trained; and through whom He's given you the truth and the knowledge. And then there are others under me — to help you, and to feed you, and to bring you on to a SPIRITUAL growth and a SPIRITUAL maturity, and developing the very CHARACTER of the living God. That is the purpose of our lives.
Then we will have the responsibility of helping to save the whole world at the time of Christ's coming, and we are coming closer to that all the time. I don't have time to go into prophesy and things like that. But we are getting very close to the time of the end of this present time and this present age. We are coming very close to the time when God is going to intervene in the world affairs of this world, and when He is going to take over. Christ will come, and the devil will be put away; and then we shall reign. Without any Satan here to deceive you, the world is going to learn the truth of God.
There's so much more of this, so many little details. I haven't time to fill all of them in. Your local ministers will have to do that from time to time, and from Sabbath to Sabbath. You'll have to do it in your study. We'll try to get it to you in our various publications. And by the way, brethren, do you know that we have more publications than any church on earth, I believe. So far as I know, we do.
There is The Plain Truth, with a circulation over two million — reaching the world, and also for our own brethren. Then we have The Good News, a magazine reaching our brethren, and also some coworkers and a few that are interested besides. Then we have The Worldwide News, which reaches only our own brethren and gives us news of Church activities; news of various people in the Church and people that you've met at the Feast of Tabernacles and things like that; and also news (every two weeks or so) of how the Work is going on, and what is happening in this Work that we have to do and in the Church. Then there is The Pastor General's Report that goes out every week to your ministers. There's much in that that they can take and give to you in a Sabbath sermon. Then we have for the children, we have the Youth '81 — a magazine for youths (primarily those from, say, about age 12 on up to and through 18).
Of course, we have Ambassador College; and we're opening Big Sandy again (as a junior college) this autumn, so we'll have the two college campuses. We have so many other activities that other churches do not have — like the Feast of Tabernacles, and these festival services and meetings. Then we have books, and pamphlets, and many booklets on various subjects to feed you on the truths of God.
But we must GROW SPIRITUALLY! Just having accepted Christ is only the start! It's only the beginning. If you don't go on from there, you will die spiritually; and you'll just die period. Some day you will be as though you had not been. You will be ashes under the soles of the feet of those that do grow, if you don't continue to develop and grow in spiritual character day-by-day, week-by-week, year-by-year.
That's what I wanted you to know, and I wanted to give you this message. How you get the truth. How you came to be here. It comes from God. It comes through Christ. Christ has imparted it to His apostle. I don't know of any apostle from the time of the original apostles until today and where Christ Himself ... Christ taught me by this Word. But He taught me in a way that I had to rid my mind and sweep it clean of EVERY religious belief and doctrine, and thought, that I ever had; and get it out of the Bible, pure and simple. That's what I am passing on to you.
Brethren, I hope you realize how we are organized. There have been times when every man went his own way, the way that seemed right in his own eyes. One man this way, another man that way, another man this way — every one going off his own way. Paul teaches us we must all speak the same thing. That thing comes from God the Father. It comes through Christ. It comes through the apostle. Through the apostle it comes down through your other ministers, and through our literature, and our magazines, and our ways of printing that we have today — to you, so that you get GOD'S TRUTH pure and simple.
No other church on earth has it! No other church has EVER had it for 1900 years or more. I want you to realize how wonderful it is, how blessed we really are. Well, it's been a blessing for me to be here. I haven't seen you; I haven't been here with you, for eleven years. I don't know whether it will be another eleven, and I don't know that I'll still be here 11 years from now.
I hope that Christ will be here before that time. I don't know. I don't know when He'll be here. I know He can't be here within 3 ½ or 4 years. It's going to be longer than that. And beyond that, we don't know. We know we are getting close to the time. That's all we know. And we know that we'd better be prepared to rise with those that will be raised from the dead, to rise and meet Him as He is coming — coming in clouds. And His feet are going to stand that same day on the Mount of Olives; and I hope we'll all be there with Him.
So if I don't see you again until then, I'll see you then, brethren. I hope we will; and I hope you realize the real seriousness of everything that I've said to you today, and how serious it is. Now, we've had some trouble in this Church here within the last year. Trouble had been brewing for a long time, but within the last year this Church has been put back on the track; and I hope we are back on the track where we belong. I hope you realize where the truth comes from, how God channels it on down to you, how you get it.
It is in your Word, the Bible. If you see something you disagree with, go to your pastor with it. If he sees something, he must go to those that are higher up above him, or he can come to me about it. If I am wrong anywhere, I want it to be set right; and you'd better believe it — that I don't want to be wrong. And you'd better not want to be wrong either. We want to have the truth, and be right, and know what is right.
So with that I am going to say good-bye. We'll be on our way now over to New Zealand, to see the brethren over there. I believe ... I'm not sure I understood it correctly. I believe that one or two other of our Churches and groups are tuned in, and have been hearing this with you. I'm not sure; if so, I bid them 'God speed' the same as you.