September 22, 2017 Brethren Letter
In less than two weeks we will be keeping God’s Feast of Tabernacles. As we know, God’s Festivals reveal His master plan for mankind. The day is coming when the world will change for the better. Only God can bring that about. Man will finally begin to learn God’s way of GIVE.
Tonight, I will attach an article written several years ago. This article has four keys that will help make this year’s Feast of Tabernacles the BEST FEAST EVER!
Have a wonderful Sabbath everyone!!!!
Your Brother in Christ,
PS Here is the schedule for the rest of the fall Holy Day season.
Day of Atonement – Sabbath, September 30, 2017
One Service – 1:00 PM Eastern Time
Feast of Tabernacles – Alabama
(1st service will begin at 7:30 PM Wednesday evening,
October 4, 2017.
Two services (Holy Day) – Thursday, October 5, 2017 – 10:00 AM and 2:00 PM (An offering will be taken up during the AM service)
Two services on the weekly Sabbath – October 7, 2017 – 10:00 AM and 2:00 PM
One service all other days of the Feast – 10:00 AM
Last Great Day – Thursday, October 12, 2017
Two services (Holy Day) – 10:00 AM and 2:00 PM – (An offering will be taken up during the AM service)
FOUR KEYS TO THE BEST FEAST EVER!
By Gary Liebold
Very soon, our brethren will be celebrating the Feast of Tabernacles for 2017. God tells us in His inspired Word (Deuteronomy 16:13-15), that we SHALL keep the Feast of Tabernacles. There’s no guesswork needed about that! God also wants us to be joyful at the Feast, both as a group and individually. In other words, we must strive to have the best Feast ever!
In a letter written to the brethren dated March 25, 1983, Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong stated:
“This year we shall be one year nearer to the glorious Kingdom of God with Christ here in person and Satan banished. Christ came to call us out from among them of the world to live according to God’s law as His people. We are the start of a new world, a World Tomorrow, the Kingdom of God. For eight days, we shall be separated from the world, among ourselves, enjoying a foretaste of the world to come, of which we are pioneers. We are the pioneers who have been given an understanding, not because of our righteousness, but because of God’s goodness…an understanding of the World Tomorrow.”
God wants us to work together, in order to make this Feast the very one best ever. Matthew 24:45 speaks of the faithful servant giving meat in due season. Deuteronomy 14:22-26 shows how God wants us to approach the Feast.
22 “You shall truly tithe all the increase of your grain that the field produces year by year.
23 And you shall eat before the LORD your God, in the place where He chooses to make His name abide, the tithe of your grain and your new wine and your oil, of the firstborn of your herds and your flocks, that you may learn to fear the LORD your God always.
24 But if the journey is too long for you, so that you are not able to carry the tithe, or if the place where the LORD your God chooses to put His name is too far from you, when the LORD your God has blessed you,
25 then you shall exchange it for money, take the money in your hand, and go to the place which the LORD your God chooses.
26 And you shall spend that money for whatever your heart desires: for oxen or sheep, for wine or similar drink, for whatever your heart desires; you shall eat there before the LORD your God, and you shall rejoice, you and your household.
God wants us to faithfully REJOICE! He wants us to have a foretaste of the Wonderful World Tomorrow, both physically and spiritually. But, what ingredients do we need individually and yes, even as a group, to make this the best Feast we’ve ever celebrated? Listed below are four “keys” we should study and use as we attend this year’s Feast.
The First Key – Gain Deeper Learning and Understanding
In Mystery of the Ages, on page 228 under the subheading “The Church-A Teacher’s College,” we read, “The Church may be called ‘God’s Teacher’s College’ to prepare rulers and teachers for the Kingdom of God.”
This is what we are preparing for. We are being trained now for positions of leadership in God’s coming Kingdom. In Isaiah 30:20-21, we can see that the Sons of God will be seen as teachers in God’s Kingdom in the future.
20 And though the Lord gives you The bread of adversity and the water of affliction, Yet your teachers will not be moved into a corner anymore, But your eyes shall see your teachers.
21 Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,” Whenever you turn to the right hand Or whenever you turn to the left.
The Church will be “firstfruits” in God’s plan of salvation. We cannot teach or show other’s about God’s way of life unless we know how to live it ourselves. We must come to the Feast, eager to learn. Isaiah 2:1-5 emphasizes the teaching that will take place, and we will be right there in the heart of it.
We must also remember to pray for our speakers at the Feast this year, as well as for the hearing and understanding of the messages God brings to us. Hebrews 5:6-12 reminds us that we are not to become dull of hearing. Please remember to pray for each of speakers (Mr. Bawiec, Mr. Gregoire, and myself), both in advance of the Feast and during the Feast.
The Second Key – Make this a Feast of Service
In the book, The Missing Dimension in Sex, Mr. Armstrong writes, “God’s law is a way of life – it guides actions and uses in a definite direction – always constructive, uplifting and beneficial; always the way of love and unselfish concern for others.”
Human nature is the complete opposite of God’s character. Human beings have the tendency to want to be served, to want things their way, and to want them when they want them. God uses the analogy of a body in I Corinthians 12:12-21 for a purpose. He reminds us that we each have an important part to play in the body. Not everyone can give a sermon or perform special music, but we all interact and connect with each other as a team to serve and lift each other up. We are all needed as part of the body…we cannot work well without everyone working together in harmony.
In Matthew 20:20-28, we can clearly see that Christ’s life was all about service…and so must ours be. There are many ways we can help and serve each other at the Feast this year.
Here are a few suggestions to think about. For instance, have you thought of taking someone to dinner or lunch that might not have a great deal of second tithe? How about locating someone who is at the Feast alone and including them in an activity? If there are cards to be signed for people who are sick or unable to attend the Feast, be sure to make a point to sign them. Perhaps you can concentrate on keeping the area around your seat neat and clean, making the life of an usher easier.
I’m sure every one of us can think of some way to serve at this year’s Feast of Tabernacles. Serving makes the Feast better for everyone…including yourself! And don’t forget to pray for everyone’s health at the Feast.
The Third Key – REJOICE! (Deuteronomy 16:13)
God really wants us to enjoy the Feast, both physically and spiritually. Remember though, if our focus is on the spiritual, the physical enjoyment will come more readily (Psalm 16:8). God is really pleased to make us His people (I Samuel 12:22).
In Matthew 5:14, we are told to be a “the light on the hill.” We cannot do this if we are complaining, Israelites! A long time ago, I heard a humorous story told at the Feast of Tabernacles about a Feast site that had experienced a great deal of people complaining about several things. An evangelist who saw the overall problem addressed the brethren in a sermon and urged the people to stop, as this type of behavior was not becoming of God’s people.
Later the same evening, a member and his family and friends were gathered at a local restaurant for the evening meal. In the same restaurant, seated not far away, was the same evangelist and his party. The above member had ordered soup with his meal, and when it had been served and he tasted it, he exclaimed… “Waitress, this soup’s cold!!!” All of a sudden, he caught sight of the evangelist looking right directly at him, and he quickly added, “…and that’s just the way I like it!” Brethren, we need to take this to heart and make sure we make this a Feast of rejoicing, not complaining!
The Fourth Key – Build the Family!
In Philippians 2:2-5, we can see admonitions on how important it is to work together to build the family into a united, cohesive unit.
2 fulfill my joy by being like-minded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind.
3 Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself.
4 Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.
5 Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus,
We need to make it a point to try to get to know everyone at the Feast this year. Unlike so many years ago, when Feast sites consisted of thousands of people, we are part of a very small group. This makes it easier to take the time to get to know our brethren better.
We should also extend that courtesy to those we know that cannot be at the Feast with us this year. Phone calls, or a simple card remind our brethren far away that they are part of the family and not forgotten! “Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ…” (II Corinthians 5:20). As we can see, we are AMBASSADORS for Christ and should be excellent representatives of God’s way of life. Remember, we ARE a FAMILY, and we must be building that family in unity!
Again, the Feast is all about God’s plan – His picture of the World Tomorrow – all a foretaste of what God has in mind for mankind! God wants us to gain a spiritual picture at the Feast. By using these FOUR BASIC KEYS, of making this Feast one of learning and understanding, including a dedicated spirit of service and an attitude of rejoicing, and taking time to do our part to build the family, we can begin to make the Feast of Tabernacles 2017 the BEST FEAST EVER!!