March 4, 2016 Brethren Letter
Over thirty years ago my wife and I had the opportunity to visit the Grand Canyon. We were simply awestruck by its size, depth and beauty. After seeing such amazing splendor right before our eyes, we thought, “How in the world could anyone even BEGIN to say there is no God?”
(20) For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse,
(21) because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened.
(22) Professing to be wise, they became fools (Romans 1:20-22).
When we arrived, we were greeted by a ranger who asked if we had ever been to the Grand Canyon before. I told him that I had been to the Canyon in my early teens. He assured me with a smile that it hadn’t changed at all since then. No, it sure hadn’t. It was still just as spectacular thirty years ago as it was when I was fourteen!
The Grand Canyon is over two-hundred miles long, six miles wide, and one mile deep. God’s infinite power and strength are on display every single day for all to see!
One thing tourists discover quickly in the National Park, is that there are protective railings throughout. Those railings are designed to prevent injuries or deaths resulting from an unintended fall. Sadly, some people disregard those warnings and foolishly climb over the rails. It has been said that an average of one person per month dies at the Grand Canyon from a fall. In fact, a gift shop employee died the year we were there. Evidently, during her lunch break, she too climbed over the rail just to get a better view of the Canyon. Though she should have known better, she had become quite COMPLACENT, ignoring all warnings.
God’s late apostle, Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong, warned over and over that time was short. Clearly, Mr. Armstrong believed that events leading up to Christ’s return would happen far sooner than they have. “For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be. And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved; but for the elect’s sake those days will be shortened” (Matthew 24:21-22).
Mr. Armstrong died in 1986, thirty years ago. There are Biblical events that haven’t occurred yet, such as the Great Tribulation. Now, since the Tribulation still hasn’t begun in 2016, does that mean it won’t? Well, God’s Word is ALWAYS true! God CANNOT lie (Numbers 23:19; Titus 1:2.)! Brethren, becoming spiritually LUKEWARM or COMPLACENT, won’t work out well for anyone (Revelation 3:16)! Clearly, in our day, there are those who believe that Christ’s return has been substantially delayed. “But if that evil servant says in his heart, ‘My master is delaying his coming’,… (Matthew 24:48). Remember, Christ was not speaking to the “WORLD” in that verse. He was speaking to His disciples and He’s speaking to YOU and ME in this end-time! Those are very serious words!
(36) “But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, but My Father only.
(37) But as the days of Noah were, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be.
(38) For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark,
(39) and did not know until the flood came and took them all away, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be.
(40) Then two men will be in the field: one will be taken and the other left.
(41) Two women will be grinding at the mill: one will be taken and the other left.
(42) Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming.
(43) But know this, that if the master of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched and not allowed his house to be broken into.
(44) Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.
(45) “Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his master made ruler over his household, to give them food in due season? (Matthew 24: 36-45).
I think of the young lady who died at the Grand Canyon while we were visiting. She didn’t heed the warnings (the protective railings). She fell to her death! This employee, of all people, should have known better. She had become careless. Spiritually, we can’t afford to let that happen to us. God has a tremendous reward ahead, if we remain ALERT, and ready. (Matthew 24:13). “Blessed is that servant whom his master, when he comes, will find so doing. Assuredly, I say to you that he will make him ruler over all his goods” (Matthew 24: 46-47).
Please have a good Sabbath!
Your Brother in Christ,