Letter to the Brethren – October 18, 2001
Dear Brethren and Co-workers,
As we begin to take stock of where we are after the Feast of Tabernacles, the first thing we want to do is to give thanks and credit where it is due. What a peaceful, rewarding and joyful feast we have just experienced! God has blessed us richly in every way. Our hope and our strength have been renewed, and we are continuously being encouraged to go forward. As the dust settles, more and more brethren who have remained steadfast in the faith have been coming together in this common effort.
Once again, God has given us the opportunity and a voice to be able to declare His words. Therefore, our thanks are twofold – first of all to God, and then to all the brethren. Your prayers, your encouragement, your willing offerings, your tithes, your voluntary service and your gifts to God make it all possible.
We find an example of this kind of “thanks” when King David was inspired to pour out his gratitude to God, and to all the brethren for their very generous freewill gifts:
“Blessed are You, LORD God of Israel, our Father, forever and ever.
Yours, O LORD, is the greatness, The power and the glory, The victory
and the majesty; For all that is in heaven and in earth is Yours;
Yours is the kingdom, O LORD, And You are exalted as head over all.
Both riches and honor come from You, And You reign over all. In
Your hand is power and might; In Your hand it is to make great And
to give strength to all. Now therefore, our God, We thank You And
praise Your glorious name. But who am I, and who are my people,
That we should be able to offer so willingly as this?
For all things come from You, And of Your own we have given You.
For we are aliens and pilgrims before You, As were all our fathers;
Our days on earth are as a shadow, And without hope.” (1 Ch 29:10-15)
What a blessing it is for us, not only to be a part of God’s great plan, but also to be able to continue to actively serve Him. Less than four months ago, we did not know if it would be possible for all of us to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles together this year. There was no assurance we would be able to continue the full time preaching and publishing of the whole uncompromised gospel. We asked ourselves, “How long will we be able to boldly stand for the Truth and uphold the moral high ground?”
As brethren, scattered geographically, but together in spirit, we can only thank God when we consider what He has done for all of us. He has been richly blessing us as it says in Luke 6, “in giving us good measure, pressed down and running over.” Because of the blessings of God, and the very generous nature of His people, we have come away from the Fall Holy Days, not only with a renewed vigor to continue His work, but also with the financial resources to do so. We are not ashamed to express our generosity just as King David did. For this, we give You, O Lord, the thanks and the glory.
Our brethren have come away from this feast having been fed with the undistorted meaning of the Holy Days. All of us are invigorated and stirred to action. Many are saying, “This was the best feast ever – or he best feast in a long, long time.” Let’s not let down. We must hold fast, be zealous, and remain uncompromising as we continue to do God’s will.
During these Fall Holy Days, whether in Great Britain, USA, Belgium, Canada, Philippines, at home or wherever our brethren were observing the feast days, there was a renewed awareness of end time events and an increased expectancy for the return of Jesus Christ. These are dangerous times. Never before have there been so many “winds of doctrine and prophetic speculations” clouding men’s minds, to draw away God’s people.
Because conditions are dangerous and changing rapidly, we must speak and write with a renewed clarity and fervor. Never before, on the way to and from the feast, have we seen armed military men patrolling air terminals in the United States. The fear of terrorism is beginning to take its toll, not only on the peaceful environment that we had in America, but terrorism’s impact is affecting the economy in a way that has the financial experts dismayed. Worse yet, world geopolitics are being rewritten. The real danger for us, however, is of a spiritual nature. Time is short, and there is much to be done.
How will God continue to call some “at the last hour” as in the parable of the laborers in the vineyard? God’s work is not yet complete – we must be “so doing” when Christ returns. If God’s work is not over, then our work is not over. For our little group, this is the essence of our existence – we must continue – it is not our strength, but God who does the Work. But, brethren, we do have our part in it.
God is pleased with our standing up, not seeking security or status, and continuing in His uncompromised Truth. He would not be pleased with haughtiness and arrogance. So, we say thank you, humbly, to our Father for sustaining us and allowing us to go forward.
As much as we are being blessed, we must always remember then, that it is not by our might, power, or any such thing. Let us continue to pray for a humble attitude, recognizing that anything we give to God already belongs to Him. Or, as David so eloquently put it, “For all things come from You, and of Your own we have given You.” (1 Ch 29:14)
We must always remember that God’s plan is sure, and right on His schedule. We can be happy, and rest assured for that. Success will be His, and He wants us to share in that ultimate success with Him and his Son, Jesus Christ. Yes, we have much to be thankful for, brethren.
It is only our Father’s appreciation that any of us truly desire. Let’s recognize that He is the one who says to us, “Thank you.” And, as we jointly thank God, let me also say to you, thank you brethren, most of all for standing strong in God’s Truth.
Your brother, in Christian love,
Warren M. Zehrun