For five years, starting after 2009, I have written an Open Letter about The Restored Church of God to all of Godâs people. This will be the longest and most inspiring of the five. You will want to read every paragraphâeach one is loaded!
As 2014 arrived, 2013 had brought one proof after another that humanity is utterly failingâin EVERYTHING! Never before has the world been more filled with problems. With the passing of timeâand now another year by manâs calendar is upon usâcome ever more issues, not lessâNEVER less. Existing problems grow collectively worse instead of betterâall of them. Each day brings new stories of disease, poverty, war and rumors of war, terrorism, crime, crises, violence, natural disasters, hunger, immoralityâindeed amoralityâreligious confusion, oppression, political upheaval and corruption, financial woes, division between and within nations, and so much more. At every turn, man is botching and mangling ALL of his efforts to solve the worldâs greatest problemsâproblems that only the arrival of the KINGDOM OF GOD can solve. No world leader and certainly not any pope can bring this.
And individually, people have never seemed more incapable of addressing and overcoming personal problems. As with the world in general, the passing of time finds individuals and families drowning under an ever-worsening sea of decadence and seemingly insurmountable difficultiesâat work, in schools, in cities, in neighborhoods and in individual homes. More and more people seem completely incapable of managing their lives and of pursuing anything other than pleasures and escape. And this problem is seen to be worldwide. For instance, the Wall Street Journal recently reportedâjust one headline in one paper in one day!âthat gambling in Macau (an island off Chinaâs coast) is now seven times greater in volume than LAS VEGAS!!! It was also reported that Italy is as bad or worse.
The FRUITS of this worldâSATANâS worldâare ALL BAD! This is why the Work of God has FULLY reached the time when it must grow great, and bigger in size and impact month after month after monthâin QUANTUM LEAPSâwith no stopping. Jesus taught, âYou shall know them by their FRUITSâ (Matt. 7:16, 20). Herbert W. Armstrong repeated these passages often. Only the ONE Church Jesus built passes the test when fruits alone are made the standard. All true fruitâthat from Godâsprings from having the truth, traditions and standards of the past, accompanied by Godâs guidance and blessingsâwhich must all be demonstrably provable!
The year 2013 was truly like none other for The Restored Church of God! Godâs Work is BOOMINGâand in almost every category! Yet ALL the organizations (small, medium and large) that formed from the Worldwide Church of God in the wake of the apostasy grew very little or not at all in 2013! In fact many declined in size and income, and in virtually all well-established categories of measuring fruit. (One medium-sized group just imploded, with many of its ministers leaving in recent days.) God is supplying no fruit in their organizationsâand since He is NOT leading them, the growth never comes. But The Restored Church of God DOES have the fruitâTREMENDOUS fruit!âthat the other organizations lack.
Today, thousands of former WCG members are confused about where God is working. Many are wondering what to do. While some no longer care about the doctrines, traditions, standardsâand fruitâof an organization, some still do. These brethren would be carefully examining available options, looking for what they were taught and experienced under Mr. Armstrongâs leadership of the Church. They know these things are visible only to those looking for them! Knowing Christ is not divided, and that all who are led by Godâs Spirit will ultimately walk in truth, and âspeak the same thingâ (I Cor. 1:10, 13), they become candidates to find the one place where Jesus Christ is truly the Head of His unified Church and Body.
If you are in the United Church of God (UCG), Living Church of God (LCG), Philadelphia Church of God (PCG), Church of God, a Worldwide Association (COGwa), or any other splinter or sliver that came out of the WCG, this will be among the most important reports you will ever read. But think as you read. So sadly, great numbers of brethren have become content to let their leaders do their thinking for themâand with ETERNAL LIFE at stake! This letter will not help such ill-informed, easily seduced, âobedientâ people.
But it might help you!
The United Church of God becomes a case in point. This organization has been marching directly back to the world for the almost 19 years of its existence. (I explain this in detail in many places. Dress standards alone in ALL of the groups are blinking neon lights to those with observant âeyes to seeâ that this march is happening everywhereâthat many are even moving beyond Laodicea.) Unitedâs journey is almost complete. Obviously, they deny this. But has anyone ever seen, or even heard of, a single church on EarthâEVEN ONE!âthat admits it is of this world? Of course not. That Unitedâs leaders are now working in a âcooperativeâ tandem with a large group that Mr. Armstrongâs son led away in rebellion over 35 years ago is merely the latest outrage they commit against God, Mr. Armstrongâs legacy and their docile membership who are so willing to let them get away with their deceit. This deception necessarily involves what they say about me and Godâs true Church and Work! (That Mr. Armstrongâs long-time, professed-to-be-loyal assistant leads UCGâs charade and no one calls him on it is appalling. But none can confront when they are pushing from behind.)
Tragically, most fall prey to devil-inspired attacks upon, and deceit about, Godâs one Church coming from the top men in their organizations (but also other ministers) until it is too late for them to recover. Why does no one believe Christâs FOUR explicit warnings, just in Matthew 24, about âmanyâ at the end of the age who âdeceiveâ in His name and gain âmanyâ followers? The context makes plain He is not speaking of the world.
So many have come to be modern Americans, but in reverse: While the U.S. government systematically takes away more and more individual liberties from its citizens, Godâs people are being âpromisedâ ever more âlibertyâ (II Pet. 2:19) from various doctrines by false leaders when such brethren are actually âbecoming the servants of corruptionâ (same verse) in places where democratically derived decisions by committees of democratically elected leaders cut off from God have been diligent to make sure nothing is ever really accomplished. Yes, the blind lead the blind who so happily follow them into the DITCH.
So many remain seduced into believing God no longer hasâor never hadâjust one church under one government and doing one Work, but rather is what Joe Tkach and evangelicals believeâthat a divided Christ is working in many places under many leaders doing part of His Work here, there and the other placeâwho knows, maybe hundreds of places. (To understand the true Church and Body of Christ, take time to read my book True Church â One Organization, or Many?)
But how is one to KNOW who is right and who is wrong?âwho is a deceiver and who is true? How can you know if I am a charlatan, or the leader of Godâs Church? Christ would never leave His people without a standardâan index, a method, a ruler, a WAY of measuring what is true and what is not! Of measuring who is true and who is not!
Growth is the greatest indicator of fruit. (The list below includes other indicators.) Each category forms another fruit one can measure. In this regard, The Restored Church of God is without peer in every category of measurement!
Mr. Armstrong said time and again, âWhen our ways please God, He blesses us.â We teach everything Mr. Armstrong taughtâno exceptions! No one else does this. Therefore, we are being blessedâTREMENDOUSLYâwhen no one else is, but think and claim they are. (And the Haggai/Zechariah prophecy makes clear that conditions in the splinters will only grow much worse.) Here are four short quotes from Mr. Armstrong about when and why God blesses His Church and Work. His words still apply. They are worth studying to remember how CAUSE and EFFECT work together in the most important endeavor on Earth carried out by only one entity on Earthâthe Work of God done by His lone Church. This long letter will show God IS pleased with His Work today:
âThe Work as a whole has actually started a decisive UPWARD trend since last NovemberâŚWhen WE please GOD, He expands His Work He is doing through us!
âBrethren, God is pleased with our recent greater efforts and increased devotion to HIS WORK, and is answering our prayers! I have asked you to devote more time and more intensity and fervency to your prayers for the Work at this crucial stage in the very special Work He has given His Church of this particular generation to do. Results show you have responded.â (Coworker Letter, March 19, 1981)
âForty-seven years of this Work has demonstrated clearly that when WE please God, He blesses the Work. We have been striving to PLEASE HIM these past 2Â˝ yearsâand now HE IS BLESSING HIS WORK. Everywhere, worldwide, the Work is showing NEW LIFE and VITALITY. It is growing in new converts. God is adding to His Church. It is expanding in the power of proclaiming Christâs Message. All that in our day costs money, and God is increasing the income for His Work. Most facets of the Work are increasing in the United States well above 20 percent, and this year even the increase is increasing, until I think we soon will be back on a 30 percent increase each year over the preceding year once again. In some of the other countriesâCanada, Britain, West Germany, France, Holland, Switzerland, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Mexico, the Philippines, the increase is even running over 30 percent.
âBrethren, God is not slack concerning His promises to bless us. He does far more than HIS part. He always will. What matters is how much we do OUR part.â (Co-worker Letter, April 24, 1981)
âYes, when our ways please God, He blesses us. Be sure we are all close to GOD and faithful in each one, our own part in His Work! He is prospering His Work! So much so, right now, that Satan is sure to STRIKE against it! Pray for The Work, and thanks for praying also for me.â (Co-worker Letter, September 20, 1981)
âIn many scriptures God tells us he prospers those whose ways please him. But our people as a nation have not obeyed God. The whole world has been founded and built on the philosophies and ways of life of Satan, not of God. This has been SATANâS WORLDânot Godâs. But the CHURCH OF GOD IS Godâs world in embryoâbegotten but not yet born. We are calledâdraftedâto be trained to be teachers and rulers in the world to come.
âWhen THIS WORK pleases him, he prospers it. He has been getting us back on the track. We have just closed a RECORD-BREAKING year.â (Co-worker Letter, January 20, 1983)
Why canât thousands in the splinters connect what Mr. Armstrong knew (and repeated so often) to why their organizations never show any real FRUITâno real GROWTHâyear after year after year? Was it just forgotten?
I can echo Mr. Armstrong by stating that many records were broken this year in the Work of The Restored Church of God. Here are many. As we look back at 2013, we will also at least briefly look ahead to plans for 2014. We will examine comparative statistical jumpsâwhich become an array of almost unending GOOD FRUITS that were seen in Godâs Work. Recognize that what is occurring could NEVER be done by human steam, but could only be GODâS doing:
- THE REAL TRUTH MAGAZINE: The 10th Anniversary issue was published in February, 29 years after The Plain Truthâs February 1984 50th Anniversary edition. Comparing December 2013 over December 2012, the hardcopy subscription list rose by over 200%!âwith 13 TIMES the number of subscribers added in December 2013 above December 2012âs increase! Finally, we saw more new subscribers just this December than the total list in June 2012! (Hundreds of thousands already read The Real Truth onlineâ9.3 million unique visitors since launch.) Plans are in place in 2014 and beyond to continue this dramatic increase to the magazineâs readership. Another exciting development is that we now plan to use full magazines each month in the Newsstand Distribution Program in select cities. Elsewhere we will still use brochures.
- CHURCH GROWTH: The Church again experienced double digit growth over 2012. The first five years of Restored (2000-2004) averaged a healthy 15% growth, while the next nine (2005-2013) averaged 21.5%âwhen the baseline number was of course growing bigger, making it harder to grow at even the same rate. With many BIG First Commission plans in place, we expect record Church growth to occur in 2014âand almost certainly far beyond what we have ever seen before. I will be surprised if growth does not approach 50% this year!!!
- FIELD MINISTERS AND STAFF: In 2013, several field ministers and 9 Ministerial Assistants were added. Plans are in place to add between 23 and 27 more men for assignments worldwide in 2014. Here are the cities (and countries) scheduled to receive a man no later than December 2014 (with some right away): Buffalo, NY; Cincinnati, OH; Columbia, SC; Detroit, MI; New Mexico; Little Rock, AR; Minneapolis, MN; Richmond, VA; Olympia, WA; Phoenix, AZ; Sacramento, CA; Salt Lake City, UT; St. Louis, MO; Calgary, Regina, Winnipeg, and the Maritimes in Canada; New Zealand; the Philippines; the Caribbean and two men in Europe. There are currently men in training whom we believe can fill all these slots. Birmingham, AL, Milwaukee, WI, Philadelphia, PA and Portland, OR are also possibilities.
The Restored Church of God has a strong and growing ministry in place, and in sufficient numbers for our current size. But, we have a detailed plan in place to handle the growth around the world we anticipate. And another year has passed during which all ministers and wives continue experiencing unique training. This includes Ambassador Center, The Pastor Generalâs Report, special Pastoral Care lectures and our annual Ministerial Conference, among other things. Headquarters staff also saw growth year over year. Five more hires occur in January, with about three more by April.
- INCOME: Many want to know the Churchâs income. This is natural. As with last yearâs letter, I will say a little more than usual. Think. We finished a multi-million dollar building (in one year)âincluding road, land and all infrastructureâall with cashâwithout a bank. Our income crossed well into the eight-figure mark, and, for instance, significantly exceeded COGwaâs announced 2013 income of $10.3 million, despite its being several times our size. Our enemies claim âRCG is running out of money.â Are they kidding? Do the kinds of things reported throughout this letter suggest this? We did temporarily institute small pay reductions for the ministry to help jumpstart a HUGE NEW FOCUS on expanding the First Commission of Godâs Work. But these were restored after only two months. Our income has grown an average of 32.3% for 14 yearsâ14 YEARS!âwith the last four averaging 40.5%! Ask yourself WHY. Now ask how big will we be in just one more year at this growth? What about two? Then look at PCG, with its seriously declining attendance and its seriously declining income. UCGâs income is announced as either âthe sameâ or a âfraction behind last year.â LCG is up about 13% but is likely closer to flat when all facts are considered, such as bequests. COGwa is announced as being up about 6%, but they produce close to ABSOLUTE ZERO. COGaic split last month and is gaining speed toward collapseâŚ
Here, financial growth permits ADDITIONAL MILLIONS of dollars to be spent on the First Commission just in 2014!!!
- LOCAL FUNDRAISING FOR THE WORK: 2013 was another strong year for fundraising. Since the middle of 2011, Godâs people have raised over $2.5 million dollars for His Work! This huge amount of extra funds has permitted the Work to move forward in unexpected and powerful ways. Other groups simply do notâWILL NOTâdo this. It is too much work and disrupting to all the personal pursuits so many will not give up for anyone or anything. How did such a little flock raise such millions? By exercising VISIONâand not merely just that of Headquarters or our ministers or me. Rather it was GODâS CHURCH AS A WHOLE that showed vision!
Godâs people have been creative, motivated and involved! Garage sales, flea markets, themed dinners, bake sales, knitting, collecting loose change and so many other ways of generating funds have transformed Godâs Work! Fundraising is a wonderful tool God has given His Church at the end of the age to support the preaching of the true gospel. Plans are already in place for a much greater fundraising effort in 2014.
Never in Church history has ingenuity played such a key role in disseminating Godâs truth. Just as we marvel over the Hebrews 11-12:1 âgreat cloud of witnessesâ regarding their unusual hardships, even to the sacrificing of their lives, they might marvel at the zeal, sacrifice and hard work of so many of todayâs servants.
- MAIL PROCESSING AND PRINT SERVICES: There have been large increases in hardcopy literature distributed around the world. Comparing 2013 over 2012, distribution was up 44.9%, but December over December was up 79.2%.The top three titles were: (1) Revelation Explained at Last!, (2) The True Origin of Christmas and (3) America and Britain in Prophecy. In percentage growth, it was: (1) Where Is Godâs Church? (+562%), (2) Do the Saved Go to Heaven? (+396%) and (3) A World in Captivity (+395%).
We offer more literature (and in nine languages) than what is available in ALL the splinters put together. Yet, critics say we donât even print our literature, claiming it is only available âonline.â Countless thousands know otherwise! So could you! Just ask us for a free Real Truth subscription. Then note its extraordinary quality compared to what your group produces.
- MAIL RECEIVING: In 2013, tens of thousands contacted the Church asking questions, ordering literature and searching for congregations. We sorted a mountain of mail throughout the year, with totals picking up dramatically in the last three months. In just December, we sorted 55.5% more mail than in November. We also saw a 59.7% increase in Church Inquiries and an 82.2% increase in PCD Letters over November. We can look forward in the months to come to ever larger and faster growth in the Church. WATCH!
- TELEVISION: This became a crucial tool in the Work in 2013. Here are highlights comparing 2012 vs. 2013: One contract vs. 13 in 2013â30 outlets vs. thousands in 2013âU.S. only vs. âSpanning the Globeâ in 2013â48 million TV households vs. 902 million in 2013â1 country/territory vs. 200+ in 2013âÂ˝ page of listings vs. 16-page brochure in 2013.
Media Production Services (MPS) has transformed into a full scale video production house. At the beginning of 2013, MPS sent one tape to the ION Television Network, which broadcast to only a few cities in the U.S. By the end of the year, we had reproduced and distributed The World to Comeâ˘ program in every major broadcast format available. This includes 14 digital file types and 9 different tape formats, both in the continental United States and many countries internationally. We might say, our MPS has truly become âworld-class.â Also, we have thousands more YouTube subscribers than LCG, UCG or PCG.
Airing globally, The World to Come is seen in every country on Earth, via cable or satellite television and on the Internet. In just over a year, 60 episodes have been âmasteredâ in full high-definition before broadcasting. Each one is packed with graphics, lower-screen banners, literature promotions, along with industry standard color and sharpening filters, ensuring that Godâs truth is seen and heard in the most effective way. In just a few more weeks, a free Real Truth subscription will be offered in every telecast. Our television plans in 2014 would stagger a blue whale. Again, WATCH!
MPS also completely revamped its workflow. Employing powerful new Avid editing terminals allows the video editors and graphic artists to work seamlessly together on all projects. This new technology dramatically sped up our production times. Some internal processes that once took 14-16 hours now take 20-30 minutes! We also gained precious experience and received accolades from industry professionals over the planning and design of the program.
This year, MPS will move to the new Media Centerâan absolutely state-of-the-art video production facility. (Most of the structural steel was erected today.) This building will become the video recording hub for the Headquarters campus. The added square footage will over double the size of the current studio. It will also contain our video processing machines and editing stations. The expanded studio will have up to three different âsetsâ for recording The World to Come program, Behind the Work interviews and other special programs. With the Churchâs rapidly growing media profile, it will serve as an excellent operations center for future video productions. (More on the Media Center later.)
- ADVERTISING: Largeâemphasize LARGEâmonthly budget increases were implemented starting in October! This caused HUGE increases in interest. January was our fourth straight BIG increase! (This means in 2014 the budget will virtually explode!) The result has been that in comparing December 2013 over December 2012, visitors were already up 60.6%, from 636,823 in 2012 to 1,023,021 in 2013âalmost 400,000 above last yearâs best month. (For the whole year, visitors rose by 31.6%, with 7,177,861 coming to our three websites.) December 2012 saw 1,010,271 while December 2013 climbed to 1,363,206 items distributed online. In 2012, 8,992,000 items were distributedâ2013 was 10,354,159, up 15.2%
The total books and booklets distributed in 2013 just online was almost 2.5 million (English alone). The top five (hardcopy and online) were: Are These the Last Days? (288,983)âThe True Origin of Easter (241,877)âThe True Origin of Christmas (149,293)âRevelation Explained at Last! (139,099) and Who or What Is the Beast of Revelation? (132,286).
Every December, contributing to our statistical increases, we also receive significant free organic traffic to seasonal-related literature. Here are a few AMAZING statistics: On the rcg.org site, 91,091 copies of The True Origin of Christmas were distributed online, an increase of 36.3% over last December. On realtruth.org, the article âThe True Origin of Christmasâ was read 127,105 timesâan increase of 341.14% over the previous December!
Finally, comparing the first 14 days of 2013 with the same 14 days in 2014, there has been an increase of almost 49,000 visitors this year, or 3,500 per day. Items distributed are up 43.6% in this same two-week period.
- POWERFUL TECHNOLOGY: Few websites in the world offer the kind of truly powerful, unified (industry term) experience as the three produced by Godâs Church. Our web presence in 2014 will continue to develop at the technological cutting edge. The last of our public websites, realtruth.org, will also be completely redesigned using the responsive design method. Responsive websites automatically adapt to the screen size of ANY device. Like rcg.org and worldtocome.org (where this has already been implemented), the new realtruth.org will in 2014 work flawlessly on millions and millions of mobile devicesâand ANY new ones introduced in the future! We will also implement a unified account system for all our websites. Users signing up on any of them will automatically gain access to advanced features (such as custom sorting, bookshelves, playlists and much more) on all three.
According to a popular website ranking company, rcg.org is ranked among the very top religious websites of any kind in the world. We recently were ranked ahead of the United Church of God, and UCG combines all its websites into one (including its magazine and video sites, and all local congregation host pages). This artificially boosts its ranking. Our three websites (Church, magazine and broadcast) are presented separately, in a much more professional way. Our websites are far and away bigger than any of the much bigger groups, who have much less traffic because they have so much less to offer. This is not stated to âcrowâ or âbrag,â but the facts show in a clear, powerful way the reach that Godâs Church is having across the world.
Remember, you are looking for the fruits of God, and His Church and Work. Again, make yourself come to grips with FACTS in what you have readâand will continue to read.
- AMBASSADOR CENTER: Ambassador (Training) Center currently enrolls 80 students (both on-site and distance learners), with more applications arriving weekly, as well as hundreds of alumni across the globe. Online testing for all courses is now operational for distance-education students. The fourth college Envoy, an annual pictorial record prepared with the same quality of decades past, is in production. Many student employees and recent graduates now fill full- and part-time positions in a variety of departments at Headquarters.
- BUILDINGS AND CAMPUS DEVELOPMENT: The Hall of Administration was completed in 2013 and gives us almost 42,000 sq. ft. of beautiful office space. The incredible speed in which this truly magnificent structure was built was astonishing. The generosity of members, co-workers and donors in the field further developed Godâs âcity set on a hill.â
All you older brethren know from what Mr. Armstrong explained often that a campus of necessary buildings must exist to support all crucial functions of Godâs Work. You also know that they must reflect the character and quality of God. He has supplied these buildings. But you may not know that Mr. Armstrong regularly wrote to the Church and co-workers (and in detail) about ongoing advancements of all three of the Churchâs physical campuses. He knew people loved to hear these things and since I love to report them, this is not a tradition to be broken.
The Mail Processing Center is entering the final phases of construction. The enormous size of this buildingâs interior is powerfully inspiringâand swallows every entrant. It allows us to see a small piece of Godâs plans for the futureâhow He intends to expand the Work in the months and few years remaining. January and February will see the last phases of construction completed such as all painting, doors, hardware and carpeting installed, tile and floors sealed, acoustic ceilings hung, plumbing installed in the bathrooms and coffee stations, electrical fixtures hung, HVAC and final fire alarm installed. As the weather improves, sidewalks will be poured, asphalt finished on the parking lots and landscaping added. The exterior will have to wait until spring. The engineering is also now taking place to extend Ambassador Drive west to our new farm.
The Media Center is another powerful way in which God is providing for the growing needs of His Work. Since groundbreaking on November 11, infrastructure has been installed, the footers have been poured and steel is almost complete. The parking lot has also been finish graded. The bitter cold and snow temporarily halted construction because it was not yet âunder roof.â The first thaw saw construction resume.
With an early snowfall, the stunning beauty of the campus was seen to be extraordinary in every season of the year. To the west we are continuing to clear selected smaller trees, briars and brush, giving a beautiful manicured appearance to Godâs grounds. In the spring, Landscaping/Gardening will continue the process. A few more âspecimenâ trees may be planted here and there. One special source supplies to us unique trees from all over the United States, and all at wholesale. Public gardens are planned near the Headquartersâ entrance. This will consist of spectacular perennials of every color designed in a circular 100â diameter maze pattern, with walkways throughout. Up to 250,000 people passing on two nearby highways will see it each day. A staircase flanked with privet hedge will be constructed off the southwest corner of the existing parking lot to accommodate foot traffic to next summerâs new fence-enclosed ballfield.
The Mail Processing Center will be landscaped with evergreens and flowering bushes, along with flowering dogwoods, rhododendron, hydrangea and various colored perennials. The overall appearance of the building will be magnified by its naturally elevated position directly across from the Hall of Administration. The expansive views it offers looking out from within are simply stunningâSTUNNING! The Media Center will have a more woodland appearance since it is nestled up against trees to the west and the north berm with its maturing Norway spruce trees cascading down the embankment behind it. This building will be landscaped with Blue spruce trees and Japanese maples, evergreens, variegated euonymus (bushes) and azaleas. Flowering red crabapple trees will be planted in the parking lot islands.
If individual Christians are âa city set on a hill that cannot be hidâ (Matt. 5:14), the majestic campus of Godâs Church and Work is truly His âGREAT city [developing] on a hill as FRUIT that cannot be hid.â
- AGRICULTURE PROGRAM: Late last year, the Church purchased an adjoining 59 acres for agriculture use. As an active âhands onâ support arm of Godâs Church, the Agriculture Education and Research Institute (AEARI) is designed and dedicated to expanding the restoring of true values in agriculture from a biblical perspective. The Instituteâs motto is âRestoring and Sharing True Values in Agriculture, Health and Manâs Awesome Potential.â Its mission is to teach and demonstrate âTomorrowâs Husbandry Todayâ by continuing to research and carefully listen to instructions given in the commandments and statutes of God relating to agriculture and its role in the health of our soils, plants, animals and people. Also, the program teaches and demonstrates that Godâs Way works and is always the best way. This description and what follows will be well remembered by many older brethren.
As was done in the Worldwide Church of God, the program provides practical education, research results and consulting for brethren and communities locally and around the world to all desiring to put into practice crucial knowledge. Emphasis in education includes the development of sound moral character, coupled with practical training in the laws, principles and methods governing agricultural production, management, marketing and business. It will include teaching non-toxic and true life-giving agricultural methods.
One of the programâs goals is to provide direct contact between academics and production to maintain a practical approach in academic training. Classes and research will be directed toward finding additional solutions in restoring true values in agriculture and sharing themâboth in the U.S. and abroad.
Another purpose of AEARI is to provide paths to open doors to reach world leaders with the gospel. The Ambassador Center agriculture curriculum is now in development, with the first class scheduled to begin February 3, 2014. Our present plans include taping the classes and making them available through ACâs distance learning program. We are hoping to break ground on new agricultural facilities in May. A significant amount of machinery has already been purchased or donated.
- DRAMATIC HEALINGS AND PROTECTION: The Restored Church of God has seen yet another year of dramatic healings and many miraculous acts of protection from serious harm or death. These inspiringâand faith-buildingâreports come throughout the year. Here are just nine examples (of many more) that were written up and sent in:
(#1.) Upon leaving services one evening with his family, our Headquarters pastor recounted how hazardous traffic conditions required Godâs protection: âA large work truck was beside us and slightly ahead. The car in front of the truck began braking suddenly in the rushed traffic. To avoid an accident, the truck veered into our lane. Because it was almost immediately beside us, I do not humanly understand how it avoided hitting us. We were going about 65 mph and traffic was heavy. Another driver previously in front of us (now in front of the work truck) slammed on his brakes and so did the rogue truck. We had to come to a sudden stop on the freeway. I was able to brake at the exact same rate as the truck in front, all with at most one foot of space between usâalmost unheard of! It was as though we had an invisible buffer. Thankfully, no one was directly behind us. We skidded slightly but the brakes never locked up. The whole situation seemed to occur in slow motion and I was acutely aware of everything going on around me. We were all amazed and grateful. Certainly God protects His people, and in very inspiring ways when necessary!â
(#2.) A recently invited new member was anointed for an issue with his foot. It had been swollen and black for several weeks and was causing him great pain and loss of balance. This made his shoe fit so tightly he could not bend his toes. After being anointed, he called his pastor the next day to report he had been completely healed, with the first indication coming the night before, when he could bend his toes. The next morning, he could walk normally with no pain or limp.
(#3.) While giving birth, a member experienced severe hemorrhaging. She was rushed to the operating room where she continued to hemorrhage while doctors removed the placenta. The hospital staff informed her that she had lost about one liter of blood. They wanted to perform a transfusion. She refused and instead sought her minister for anointing. The doctor informed her the next morning that her blood count was completely normal and she could be released.
(#4.) A member visited the doctor to have a lump removed from his neck. At the time, he did not request anointing because it was such a simple procedure. The next day, his doctor reported that the lump was malignant and they needed another biopsy to see its severity. He asked for an anointing, stating he trusted God. A few days later, he returned to the doctor. To their absolute astonishment, the doctors found no sign of cancer whatsoever!
(#5.) A member was driving his car on a busy four-lane highway in the lane used to enter the expressway. Going 55 mph and seeing a green light, he sped up. Suddenly, another driver pulled in front of him and slammed on his brakes because the light had turned yellow. The member literally stood on his brakes, hoping he could stop. The brake pedal went right to the floorâand his brakes failed. There was nothing he could do except brace for impact. Suddenly it felt like a second set of brakes was being applied. His car came to a complete stop. He knew God had intervened because it was impossible to stop with no brakes. This all happened within seconds. He continued to drive his car home, very carefully, with no brakes. When he got home, he checked underneath the car and smelled the brake fluid, which was everywhere, dripping from the undercarriage. He checked the brake fluid level, and it was bone-dry. The brake line had failedâbut God had not!
(#6.) A member and her son were traveling a small country road at 20 mph. Rounding a blind corner, a huge tractor appeared on their side of the road. (Two cars fit snugly on these roads, with anything bigger being a very tight fit.) The driver of the tractor veered off to avoid them, but did not take into account the machine he was pulling, which was even wider than the tractor and coming straight for the car. The member was powerless to stop the car. To her left, there was nowhere to go, just a huge wall of earth with no banks. The machine the tractor was pulling only left a tiny gap, with her car not thin enough to fit throughâor so she thought! She closed her eyes and leaned back, expecting to hit the machine. But her car glided through and reached the other side unscratched! It was as if the car had shrunk to fit the tiny gap. When she looked into her rearview mirror, the tractor had stopped, with the shocked driver watching them slowly drive away.
(#7.) After a long work week, a member was very tired when it was time to go home. His trip is 50 miles through heavy stop-and-go traffic. As he got close to home, traffic resumed to highway speed. He almost immediately fell asleep at the wheel. He suddenly awoke when something touched his right hand and jerked the wheel to the left, straightening the vehicle and pointing it back into the lane instead of the big rig he would have run straight into. His right arm was completely loose when the wheel jerked and something touched his hand. Nothing else in the van could have done this.
(#8.) The day before the Feast, the son of a deacon experienced miraculous protection. His father was attending a Feast-related meeting. His mother was with the children at the beach. The father reported this the next day: âAt about 1:15 p.m., my wife watched as our son, waist deep in the water, was blindsided by a wave. It came up over his head from behind and knocked him forward and off his feet. Unbeknownst to my wife, an undertow began pulling him away from the beach. He later described his body as twirling underwater, while simultaneously being forcefully pulled farther out. Disoriented and not realizing which way was up, he began to panic and feared he would die. Desperate to resurface, he began exhaling. While still spinning, he felt what he describes as a big hand with a strong grip grab his forearm and pull him toward the beach and the surface. When he resurfaced, my wife noticed he was closer to her than when he went under. Happy to be above water, he was overcome with gratitude and began weeping. He immediately ran to his mother and began explaining his ordeal, assuming his older brother was to be thanked. He said, âIf it wasnât for him, I donât know what would have happened to me. He saved my life.â My wife called our other son over and praised him. Bewildered, he looked at his little brother and told his mother that he did not pull him up. The three stood speechless, looking at each other. The only possible explanation is God intervened and saved our son!â
(#9.) After years of pain in his wrists and hands, a member saw a doctor to test for nerve damage. The results showed severe damage in both wrists and all the way up his arms to his neck. He was scheduled to see a specialist for surgery. Deciding to rely on God for healing, the member called his pastor for an anointed cloth, which he applied the day the Church was holding a fast. His wife helped him apply it. As they prayed, he felt a strong, pulsing/tingling sensation (not pain) from his wrists to his neck. Ever since, all pain is gone, along with the need for wrist braces.
How inspiring are these miraculous accounts of Godâs intervention in the lives of His people! I enjoy reading (and reporting) themâand know that you do, too.
I never cease to be sad when I think of how others could experience what we do on a daily basis all through Godâs Churchâand in so many ways. The peace, happiness, love, extraordinary unity of doctrine and purpose, zeal, unrelenting sacrifice, efficiency and productionâso much wonderful FRUIT!âare almost physically palpable in Godâs Church. And none of this speaks to demons cast out, other miracles, open doors, blessings and incredible GROWTH in all categories. Yet leaders of the splinters so often describe our daily environment as the very OPPOSITE of what it is. (Effective deceivers are wise enough to know they must not let their followers know the truth of what they are missing.)
Your leaders will almost certainly attack this letter. And they will surely try to keep you from acting on it! Sadly, many in the splinters have been literally trapped in these organizations by a blizzard of lies and deceit from top leaders. Some about doctrine. Some about The Restored Church of God. Others about me. Will you listen to false accusers? Consider that these men carry out personal attacks because they cannot point to any real fruit in their organizationâthe kinds this letter describes. They must attack us and me, personally. And all of themâALL OF THEM!âteach various doctrinal falsehoods.
Think these attacks through. If what this letter contains is false, think of all the people at our Headquarters who had to conspire with me to falsify the report. (To learn more about false attacks, read our thorough brochure, Do You Know âDavid Packâ? â My Life and MinistryâRumors and Lies vs. Facts and Truth.)
Godâs Work is now having a POWERFUL IMPACT on millions around the world. This includes members, prospective members and many interested thousands who write us. Here are a few examples provided for inclusion by Mail Receiving:
- âThe Work of God is simply amazing. Thanks to everyone at HQ for your constant efforts. The City set on a hill is now more alive than ever before. Canât wait to see the Earthâs true jewel shine in itâs awesome magnitude this summer.â
- âI have been baptized [since] Pentecost 1972, but I never experienced so much enthusiasm in Godâs Work beforeâŚI am very thankful to be in Godâs Church. So we have the excitement in common!â
- âI am grateful to God for using each member of the RCG in very little but special ways to touch the minds of many as are and will be willing to join the household of faith. It gladdens my heart every time I go your articles and booklets. I always feel more secured under God's love thereafter. Thank you and may the Almighty God continue to bless you.â
- âI am still in constant amazement that God has chosen to reveal his truth to me. I am truly humbled. The Restored Church of God truly is set apart, and doing the work of God. The evidence of this is very obvious for those wishing to see. I am so humbled to be a member of the true Church.â
The most crucial Work on the face of the earth is being done in POWER during these LAST DAYS! There is no greater purpose for which to draw breath. World conditions commandâeven demand!âthat we PRESS ON with GODâS WORK. There is no greater calling or task than ours! Think BIG!âand then BIGGER YET!âregarding all that can and must be done to reach all nations âagainâ (Rev. 10:11) with the TRUE GOSPEL! Of course we must also warn the worldâs greatest nationsâthose descended from ancient Israelâof what lies ahead for them. None of us at our Headquarters dreamed a year ago that we would be able so soon to announce the things you are reading regarding just the media increases in this letter, never mind so many other advancements. We thought the necessary cash outlay in our building program would prohibit this.
God planned otherwise!
Godâs people here truly sacrifice for the Work! We are determined to never flagâNOW OR EVER! The world is in horrendous condition. There is little time left, and this final Work is foretold to be the greatest the world has ever seen. Recall that just before Mr. Armstrong died he said, âThe greatest Work lies yet ahead.â The time he spoke of is NOW!
There is nothing more important on Earth todayâNOTHING!!!âthan finishing RIGHT TO THE END what God has commissioned His people to do before the horrific prophecies of the Bible slam into an unsuspecting world. And they are even now descending on all nations like a hawk diving on prey that never sees it coming. Only a few years remain to carry out this Work. It will take REAL FAITH to continue advancingâbut we are MOVING FORWARD, knowing God will continually BACK US UP and provide for His Work.
How long does one remain in an organization waiting for good fruit to appearâwe could say, ANY? Examine the major splinters. Come to grips with WHY your organization does not display the fruits described in this letter. Look closely at events and trends reported by yours and other organizations. See the âfruitsâ of men for what they are. Do not allow yourself to any longer be deceived. Donât leave your salvation to âangels of lightâ who are really âdeceitful workersâ who have âtransformed themselves into ministers of righteousnessâ (II Cor. 11:13-14). Stop being deceived!
Make no mistake. The Haggai/Zechariah prophecy will be fulfilled. A long series of announcements on our website explains it in detail. Godâs people will be back together. But those who know to come now, yet willfully refuse, should question whether God will include them. We have reports that in the major splintersâALL of them!âthere are significant numbers quietly saying, âI know Mr. Pack is right about Haggai and Zechariah, and I should go to Restored now, but I am going to wait until it happens.â Such waiting carries grave risk. Those who know better, who know the prophecy is TRUE, are playing with fire and tempting God to leave them out of its fulfillment. Why would people wait? And why would they want to stay in places so different from the picture presented in this letter? Will you pry away the icy fingers of top leaders gripping you with the fear of leaving when you should fear to stay with them? More and more have broken loose, and returned to Godâs Church.
An unbelievably POWERFUL WORK is underway in The Restored Church of God! And brethren in Godâs Church enjoy equally powerful reports about it monthly. This is because Jesus Christ actually does HEAD this Church, and because we did not break the grand pattern set by Mr. Armstrongâany of it! The profile of Godâs Church and true Work on Earth is rising beyond imagination. It will soon take your breath and leave your ears ringing. We have the largest amount of biblically-based literature ever compiled by any single organization on the face of the earth!
Take time to view an eye-opening film about Godâs Work around the worldââBehind the Work 2018.â You will almost not believe what you view. Then contrast it with the weak, sad, poorly produced, even tragic productions by other groups. Come see what you may have thought was gone forever! You CAN have it all back. Thousands know this!