Letter to the Brethren – October 19, 2015
Dear Brethren and Friends,
We are sending you this special letter from the ministry of the Church of the Eternal God and its affiliates in Canada and the UK. Once again the people of God have faithfully kept the commanded Feast of Tabernacles unless, of course, illness, age, mobility or other relevant reasons denied them this blessing. Most, if not all of the brethren, will have now returned home and resumed their jobs and normal routines. No doubt, we will all have memories of the Feast from different perspectives with, hopefully, the messages taking centre stage. That is why we attend the Feast, to be taught more of God’s Way of Life now and the wonderful future that begotten members of the Family of God can look forward to.
There will be many other memories that we will have taken away and one of those for those attending in Templin, Germany, was that of the four baptisms of new members to the truth of God. Almost everyone attending the Feast witnessed this wonderful event of those forsaking the ways of this world and committing their future to a more sure way. As Jesus said: “Likewise, I say to you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents” (Luke 15:10), and there was much joy and happiness with everyone who shared this experience with those who were baptized. There are additional prospective members who are preparing for baptism, and it is anticipated that they will be baptized next year, perhaps during the Days of Unleavened Bread, when Norbert and Michael Link are scheduled to travel again to Germany.
At the Feast, the German-speaking attendees (including those from Sweden and Switzerland), were joined by ministers and members from the USA and the UK, and simultaneous translations into English and German were provided. The ministers and their families who were present at the Feast site were Norbert Link, Michael Link, Eric Rank and Brian Gale. The messages during services and a Friday night Bible Study were well received. Our traditional Talent Show and our out-door soccer game, as well as a trip to Berlin, a visit at the Western-town El Dorado, participation in the driving of Go-Karts and the usual get-together in the evenings in a privately rented hotel lounge greatly enhanced the Feast spirit. Due to the tremendous success and the enthusiastic acceptance, we have signed the contract with the Ahorn Seehotel in Templin for the Feast in 2016, and attendees have already begun to make their hotel reservations.
Before and during the Feast, it was recognized that God may be opening a door for us to reach the Russian people. We have several members who are of Russian descent and/or speak Russian fluently, and with the help of a Russian teacher, we will attempt to translate our first booklet into Russian. We do not know what opportunities God will provide, following the completion of this initial step, but if a door is open for us, we must go through it in faith. In addition, we plan to print four more German booklets before the end of the year or the beginning of next year.
We were also able to inspect our new accommodations where the Church will meet for Sabbath services, beginning in January, and we met and discussed with our attorney our course of conduct towards registration of the Church in Germany. A letter was sent to the appropriate governmental agencies, setting forth our uncompromising doctrinal and administrative position in the matter. Your prayers are requested that pursuant to God’s Will, the registration process will be completed soon.
We also observed the Feast of Tabernacles and Last Great Day in Pismo Beach, California, staying at the Hilton Garden Inn. Ministers and their families who were present at the Feast site were Dave Harris, Rene Messier, Robb Harris and Kalon Mitchell, and we welcomed attendees from the USA and Canada. Our sermonette and sermons focused in great detail on the millennial rule of Jesus Christ and the tremendous opportunity that lies ahead for Christians. Our services were broadcast live for those unable to attend. Also, at the suggestion of some viewing from home, we periodically turned the camera to show the meeting room and members—both before and after services.
We were able to participate in a wide variety of activities in the area—kayaking in Morro Bay, wine tasting in Paso Robles, farmers market in San Luis Obispo, a trip to Avila Beach and numerous dining experiences. We enjoyed an evening meal together, which was followed by entertainment and games. A Bible Study was conducted on Friday evening.
From a performance by our youth choir to the contribution of several members, special music for services added tremendously to the joyous experience for all of us in attendance. In fact, it seemed that everyone showed a willingness to participate and help. There was an especially warm and caring atmosphere among the brethren that seemed to be the hallmark of this year’s observance.
Our Feast messages which were given in Germany and the USA are being posted on our respective websites, and on YouTube.
We also distributed at the Feast sites copies of our new booklet, “Do You Know the Jesus of the Bible?” We are enclosing a copy of this booklet for our American subscribers who did not attend the Feast with us. Our subscribers in the UK will receive their copy with a separate mailing.
We understand that as society around the world degenerates and spirals almost out of control, the reality of what the Feast of Tabernacles pictures is taking on new meaning as time draws near. There will come a time when the Father will say that enough is enough and will send His Son back to the earth at exactly the right time—a time that none of us know but we can discern the signs of the times. We can also see prophetic events coming together as never before, and so we don’t know how much longer we will have the freedom to keep God’s Holy Days.
Certainly, there was much joy, happiness and anticipation at our two Feast sites. We must continue to observe the weekly Sabbath and all of the Holy Days as they stand out as beacons in an ever darkening world where the ways of God are ignored, derided or disdainfully dismissed as irrelevant, but which are truly the only hope for this world. Satan, as ever, will be doing everything possible to distract us from our path towards the coming Kingdom of God, and we must be steadfast in our resolve to continue to live the Way of Life that God has revealed to us. If we are truly sold on God’s Way of Life, we will not fail; anything other than success in this regard is unthinkable.
In the final two paragraphs in our booklet “God Is a Family,” we read the following:
“The very last book of the Bible tells us the destiny of those who become born again members, that is, Spirit beings—God beings—in the God Family. We read in Revelation 3:12, ‘He who overcomes, I will make him a pillar in the temple of My God, and he shall go out no more. I will write on him the name of My God.’ They will receive God’s name—they will enter the very Family of God as born again spirit beings. Revelation 22:4 confirms this, ‘They shall see His face, and His name shall be on their foreheads.’ At that time, they will be truly ‘born again’—and not before then. At that time, they will truly have inherited ‘all things.’
“Yes, God IS a Family—and He wants YOU to truly become a born again member of His Family—His spiritual offspring. This is the reason WHY you were born. Just imagine YOUR awesome potential and destiny—to become, and to be named, GOD!”
Let us all continue to pray for God’s Kingdom to come soon, and to remain faithful to Him and His Way to ensure that we become part of that wonderful future that is ahead of us.
With Christian love,
Norbert Link Dave Harris Rene Messier Brian Gale
Eric Rank Robb Harris Michael Link Kalon Mitchell