May 22, 2020 Brethren Letter
Tonight, I’m resending a letter written in 2011. We will be observing the Feast of Pentecost in a little over a week. God has a marvelous plan for us, and for all of mankind. Just think of it, we can actually be a part of God’s FIRSTFRUIT spiritual harvest. Through His Holy Spirit we’re able to grow now, in God’s character.
Mr. Armstrong wrote the following about “righteous character” in his book, The Incredible Human Potential (page 38).
Perfect, holy and righteous character is the ability in such separate entity to come to discern the true and right way from the false, to make voluntarily a full and unconditional surrender to God and His perfect way — to yield to be conquered by God – to determine even against temptation or self-desire, to live and to do the right. And even then such holy character is the gift of God. It comes by yielding to God to instill HIS LAW (God’s right way of life) within the entity who so decides and wills.
Actually, this perfect character comes only from God, as instilled within the entity of His creation, upon voluntary acquiescence, even after severe trial and test.
Satan also knows what our potential is, and will use ANY means possible to get us spiritually distracted. “lest Satan should take advantage of us; for we are not ignorant of his devices.” (II Corinthians 2:11). GROWING with God’s Holy Spirit is the way we overcome! “and I will ask the Father to give you another Helper to be with you for ever, even the Spirit of truth…” (John 14:16-17, Moffatt).
Have a good night’s rest and a wonderful Sabbath!
Sincerely, Your Brother in Christ,
May 27, 2011
Earlier today, one of our business clients chose to pay their “window treatment” invoice through our credit card terminal. As I was processing their payment, after just a few moments, I suddenly began thinking about something spiritual while watching the whole process. Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong often spoke of something very similar when illustrating a spiritual point made by considering “radio waves” and “frequencies.”
Now, granted, perhaps you might wonder, what kind of spiritual comparison could I possibly be thinking of, when looking at a credit card terminal? After all, isn’t it just a machine? TRUE, it is just that … a machine!
However, to give you a bit of an idea of what I was thinking about earlier today, I’ll quote some of Mr. Armstrong’s words in his book The Incredible Human Potential, (Page 151)…
Wherever you are as you read these words, chances are there are voices and perhaps music in the air around you. A radio or TV set tuned to the right wavelength would make them audible and visible to you.
We’ve all, no doubt, played a radio or television program many times, and can understand about what Mr. Armstrong was speaking. My same realization was very much true with the credit card terminal I was using. This terminal has no attached wires, cables, or even telephone cords. In fact, no matter where I would choose to stand in our state of Florida (or even other U.S states), as long as a cell tower was not far away, the terminal will always connect to the processing center that is located far away, in another part of the country, broadcasting its information wirelessly.
Data is literally being transmitted through the AIR at frequencies our ears cannot hear and our eyes cannot see. Yet, those signals are very REAL! They are there! Incredible, isn’t it? Not being able to see the transmitted waves or even hear them, does not negate their existence.
Here is more of what Mr. Armstrong wrote in The Incredible Human Potential book, (Page 151)…
Here is a TRUTH you, the reader, NEED TO KNOW!
To the Church at Ephesus, God said through the apostle Paul (Ephesians 2:1-2): “And you [who] … in time past … walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience ….”
GRASP IT! Satan is here called “the prince of the power of the AIR!” I could not have understood that sixty years ago. I did not then realize how communication by sound and by picture can be broadcast instantaneously through the air.
In past chapters I have stressed the point that Satan, the former great archangel cherub Lucifer, was the most perfect and powerful being that God could create as an individual being. He was perfect as originally created. But he is composed of spirit, and thus he is invisible to human eyes.
This great and powerful being, even though evil, has power literally to surcharge the air around this earth. HE BROADCASTS!
Have you ever had a time brethren, where you feel like you’ve “gotten up on the wrong side of the bed” as it’s called, or you feel somewhat “irritable” perhaps, but you’re not even sure why you feel that way? We probably all have, at some point in time. Have you ever thought about the reason of WHY this could happen to you or me? Continuing further with Mr. Armstrong, we read, (Page 152)…
Let me give you an illustration of how we can be swayed, influenced, and driven by Satan’s broadcasting through the air.
When God wanted to cause captive Jews in ancient Babylon to return to Jerusalem to build the second temple, He put it in the mind of Cyrus, king of Persia. The Persian Empire had taken over the rule of empire from Babylon. Following is the explanation of how God moved Cyrus to do what God wanted.
“Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia … the [Eternal] stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom …” (Ezra 1:1) that a contingent of Jews return to Jerusalem.
God did not speak to Cyrus in words or direct communication, as He talked with Moses and God’s prophets. God reached Cyrus through Cyrus’s spirit. God stirred up his spirit, causing him to want to do it. God did cause King Cyrus to know that in issuing this proclamation he was doing it according to the will of God.
Utilizing this same principle, Satan, prince of THE POWER OF THE AIR, stirs the spirits of humans, injecting into them attitudes, moods, and impulses of selfishness, vanity, lust, and greed, attitudes of resentment against authority, of jealousy and envy, of competition and strife, of resentment and bitterness, of violence, murder, and war. People do not recognize the source of these attitudes, feelings, motives, and impulses. As I said, they do not SEE the invisible Satan. They hear no audible voice. They do not know the attitude came from Satan (Rev. 12:9). But they come to FEEL such attitudes, impulses, and desires. That is how Satan DECEIVES THE WHOLE WORLD.
People will feel depressed and won’t realize why. But those unaware of this phenomenon, with this self-centered attitude being broadcast and injected into their unsuspecting minds from earliest childhood, do, to a greater or lesser degree, absorb it until it becomes their normal attitude. It becomes habitual. It does not, of course, exhibit the same degree of effect in all minds — one person will become more evil than another. But the natural tendency is there. They come to have it naturally. It becomes their very NATURE. And we call it “human nature.”
Just like the radio waves we cannot see with our eyes, or hear with our ears, that doesn’t negate the reality of Satan! Satan the Devil is VERY real!
But, the great news brethren, is that God has never let His people be defenseless to those negative influences and broadcasts of Satan. We have access to God’s Holy Spirit to help us! As Christ said, “…how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?” (Luke 11:13)
In addition, in the book of Romans we read…
“For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption [son-ship], whereby we cry, Abba, Father. The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together” (Romans 8:14-17). See also Ephesians 6:10-20 and Galatians 5:22-25.
There’s a great spiritual reward ahead for those who are tuned in to God’s “wavelength” (i.e.: His Holy Spirit), and living that way of life which produces positive and abundant spiritual fruit. When it comes to Satan’s broadcast of negativity brethren, we’re not FORCED to “tune in” and keep our minds on his frequency! (I John 2:16). There’s something MUCH better for us.
As we see in the book of Revelation, “He that overcometh [through God’s Holy Spirit], the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches” (Revelation 3:5-6).
Brethren, as we approach the Day of Pentecost, we should be thinking even more so, on what God’s Holy Spirit should be producing in our lives; Not NEGATIVITY but real positive spiritual “light”. “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven” (Matthew 5:16).
Have a good Sabbath everyone!
Your Brother in Christ,