Greetings from Charlotte, NC! Nearly 10,000 of us just returned from an inspiring “Feast of Tabernacles” celebration held at sites all over the world! My friends, the whole world will soon be observing this religious festival—including all of you who live on for a few more years.
Why do I dare make this kind of statement? Because the inspired Word of God plainly tells us: “Behold, the day of the Lord is coming, and your spoil will be divided in your midst. For I will gather all the nations to battle against Jerusalem; the city shall be taken, the houses rifled, and the women ravished. Half of the city shall go into captivity, but the remnant of the people shall not be cut off from the city. Then the Lord will go forth and fight against those nations, as He fights in the day of battle. And in that day His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, which faces Jerusalem on the east. And the Mount of Olives shall be split in two, from east to west, making a very large valley; half of the mountain shall move toward the north and half of it toward the south” (Zechariah 14:1-4). Then, later in the chapter, Zechariah continues: “And it shall come to pass that everyone who is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall go up from year to year to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, and to keep the Feast of Tabernacles. And it shall be that whichever of the families of the earth do not come up to Jerusalem to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, on them there will be no rain. If the family of Egypt will not come up and enter in, they shall have no rain; they shall receive the plague with which the Lord strikes the nations who do not come up to keep the Feast of Tabernacles. This shall be the punishment of Egypt and the punishment of all the nations that do not come up to keep the Feast of Tabernacles” (vv. 16-19).
Dear friends, your Bible makes it very clear that all the nations will soon be observing this Feast of Tabernacles which we in this Work just finished observing. If they want to argue and “reason” around it, God has a way of getting their attention: first, no rain. Then, if people don’t heed, plagues from God! At that time, people will finally learn to believe that God means what He says and says what He means!
However, this time described in these verses will be a glorious time—a peaceful and prosperous and magnificent era with a righteous Government dedicated to the genuine well-being of all human beings all over the world! For the true Jesus Christ of the Bible will be directly in charge. And He will be assisted in His firm but loving rule by thousands of us, dear brethren and co-workers, if we are willing to obey Him and let Him rule our lives. For the Bible tells us: “And he who overcomes, and keeps My works until the end, to him I will give power over the nations—‘He shall rule them with a rod of iron; they shall be dashed to pieces like the potter’s vessels’— as I also have received from My Father” (Revelation 2:26-27). Only the genuine “overcomers” will be directly involved in the coming world government under Jesus Christ!
Again, in Revelation 5:9-10, Almighty God describes the future of the true saints of God, and the inspired song they will be singing at that time: “You are worthy to take the scroll, and to open its seals; for You were slain, and have redeemed us to God by Your blood out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation, and have made us kings and priests to our God; and we shall reign on the earth.”
The God of the Bible makes it exceedingly clear that the true “saints” of God do not float off to heaven with nothing to do. Rather, we are called to “overcome” our own human nature, the world and Satan—through God’s Spirit within us—and prepare ourselves to assist Jesus Christ as “kings and priests to our God.” Then, as the above passage noted we, the saints, shall “reign on the earth.”
Who are these genuine saints of whom God speaks? They are described in Revelation 14:12: “Here is the patience of the saints; here are those who keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus.” Those who have genuine faith in the real Jesus Christ of the Bible and are willing to follow His example and obey the Ten Commandments of God are being prepared to assist Christ in ruling this earth! Again, God reminds us of the obedience He requires in Revelation 22:14: “Blessed are those who do His commandments, that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter through the gates into the city.”
Dear brethren and co-workers, the true saints are those human beings who have willingly surrendered to let the living Christ rule their own lives! They are willing to follow the inspired example of Jesus Christ. For Jesus said: “If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love” (John 15:10). And as the Apostle Paul tells us: “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me” (Galatians 2:20, KJV). We are to have the very faith of Christ in us and follow His example. Then—and only then—will God know that we are truly surrendered to do His will, and He will grant us the capacity to help rule this earth under Jesus Christ in Tomorrow’s World.
But where are we, right now?
My friends, most of you have heard or read about the veterans’ march on Washington, D.C. which took place just yesterday—as I write—on October 13, 2013. Newspaper reports indicate that thousands of veterans marched on Washington to express their deep hurt and growing disillusionment with the confusion they see in all our human governments. Many of you perhaps saw on television how they grabbed the barricades around the Veterans Memorial, the Lincoln Memorial and even the White House gate—and in the latter instance—literally threw some of these wooden objects over onto the White House lawn itself! Had the police and other officials not shown restraint there may have been a terrible incident which would never have been forgotten around the world!
The point we need to understand is that none of man’s governments are working properly. People around this world—as most of you see on TV almost daily—are being tortured, killed, raped and humiliated in many, many different ways. People are beginning to wonder what is the purpose of their lives. They are deeply disillusioned. Only the intervention of the true Almighty God of the Bible will solve this growing hurt! Again and again, God’s inspired Word tells us that the true God of the Bible will intervene in human affairs and that He will “send Jesus Christ, who was preached to you before, whom heaven must receive until the times of restoration of all things, which God has spoken by the mouth of all His holy prophets since the world began” (Acts 3:20-21).
Yes! Within a comparatively few short years, the living God will “take over” the governments of this world and bring about the prophesied Kingdom of God. As the prophet Daniel reveals to us: “Then the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdoms under the whole heaven, shall be given to the people, the saints of the Most High. His kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shall serve and obey Him” (Daniel 7:27). This Kingdom—this soon-coming World Government—will be completely based on God’s great spiritual law, the Ten Commandments. Notice what the prophet Micah was inspired to tell us: “Now it shall come to pass in the latter days that the mountain of the Lord’s house shall be established on the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and peoples shall flow to it. Many nations shall come and say, ‘Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; He will teach us His ways, and we shall walk in His paths.’ For out of Zion the law shall go forth, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem. He shall judge between many peoples, and rebuke strong nations afar off; they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore” (Micah 4:1-3).
Dear brethren and friends, this very Work which produces the Tomorrow’s World magazine and telecasts, is powerfully preaching this very message of the coming Kingdom of God based on God’s law all over the earth. We are truly dedicatedto doing this job. As the “oldest” continuously active minister today in the greater Church of God, I spent thousands of hours personally with Mr. Herbert Armstrong. I helped build the Work during that time. And now, with God’s help and mercy, I have been allowed by my Creator to get this Work going and growing with increasing power so that we are adding more and more television stations, adding more and more readers to the magazine, growing the power of our Internet all over the earth and having increased impact on the world as a whole beyond that of any other group that I know. God is using us. The many thousands of people at our Feast of Tabernacles celebration know that. For they heard inspiring and moving sermons about prophecy, about their real “job” of becoming kings and priests within a few years, about the opportunity to be full membersof the God Family throughout all eternity! It was an inspiring time.
And that millennium—which this Feast pictures—is soon to come! Thank God! For then, Christ will set up His Kingdom on this earth and bring a type of joy and peace such as has never been experienced. Each one of us in this Work needs to completely surrender ourselves to let Christ live in us. We need to go all out in preparing for Christ’s coming Kingdom. We need to go “above and beyond” in doing our part in getting Christ’s final warning message and the glorious message of His coming Kingdom out to this world while we have the opportunity.
Soon, perhaps, religious persecution—plus attacks by misguided human governments—may try to shut us down! Understand! Pray fervently that God will enable us to do our part while we have this opportunity. As the Apostle Paul wrote, “The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light” (Romans 13:12). In Jesus’ name, I ask all of you faithful brethren and co-workers to do all you can to help us move forward and reach the peoples in our beloved nations, to reach our neighbors and friends and everyonearound this earth with Christ’s message—and do this with increasing power! Then, and only then, can we be sure of having Christ tell us in a few years when He returns, “Well done, good servant; because you were faithful in a very little, have authority over ten cities” (Luke 19:17).
With Christian love,
Roderick C. Meredith