The Messenger Church of God keeps the festivals God commands his people to keep. The commanded festivals and annual Sabbaths are listed in Leviticus 23. They include, in addition to the weekly Sabbath, the Passover, the Feast of Unleavened Bread, the Feast of Pentecost, the Feast of Trumpets, the Feast of Atonement, the Feast of Tabernacles, and the Last Great Day, associated with the Feast of Tabernacles, but technically a separate feast. The 2024 festival observance planned by the Church for the commanded annual festivals is summarized below.Continue reading
Jesus in Luke 4:4 said that man is to live “by every word of God.” He taught that the wise will build his life on the foundation of obedience to the word of God (Matthew 7:24-25).
God’s word judges us. “For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart” (Hebrews 4:12). “Discerner” is from the Greek κριτικός, an adjective that means able to judge or discern (Greek-English Lexicon, Bauer, Arndt and Gringrich). The English word “critic” is derived from the Greek word used here. Kριτικός is a cognate of κριτής (kritēs), a judge, and κρίνω (krinō), a verb meaning to judge or distinguish or decide. God’s word judges us, and in a sense is our critic. It penetrates beyond the surface to our innermost being. In the final analysis, everyone will be judged by God’s word (John 12:48).Continue reading
We live in a world teeming with a vast assortment of living creatures. There exist the one celled microbes, such as bacteria and protozoa, invisibly small microscopic creatures that nevertheless under powerful magnification show complex and intricate design. On the other end of the scale are huge blue whales which may be 100 ft. long and weigh as much as 115 tons. The earth is home to birds that soar miles above sea level and also to creatures that live in the deepest parts of the ocean. There are plants which produce flowers of exquisite beauty and fragrance, and others that look and smell like rotten meat. From space earth looks like a shimmering blue and white jewel. The earth, unique among planets, is perfectly suited for life. Its uniqueness has been further highlighted by the Mariner, Viking and Voyager spacecraft probes which have shown the other known planets to be completely hostile and forbidding to life.
Why is the earth a uniquely living planet? Why is there such a teeming abundance and variety of life on earth? Is it an accident? Or is it planned and is there a purpose behind it? If there is a purpose, what is it? These are some of the questions I want to explore with you today.Continue reading
We live in a world in which confusion abounds. In every major facet of the world’s society: education, politics, religion, or whatever, contradictions, conflict and confusion prevails. Almost every subject of consequence is controversial these days.
There is a continuous struggle going on for our attention. Whether you realize it or not, your mind is under siege. All kinds of elements, groups, individuals, with a point of view to sell are struggling to capture your mind—attempting to win it over to their point of view. Your mind is constantly being bombarded by conflicting ideas, beliefs and opinions.
Even something as obvious as one’s sex is controversial. Are you male or female? An increasingly popular idea these days is that it’s not your DNA, nor the sex organs you are born with, that determine your sex. It’s whether you “feel” that you are male or female. Confusion about one’s sexual identity is being deliberately sown among even very young children by prevailing forces in our society. We can feel compassion for those who are confused about their sexuality, which often results from abuse or other kinds of mistreatment. But I have a hard time feeling anything but contempt for willful proponents of such confusion.
Paradoxically, in a world where the very idea of objective truth is increasingly under assault, powerful institutions are becoming more and more intolerant of any opinions on controversial matters which do not concur with their own.
Powerful social media companies routinely censor or deplatform those posting material which runs counter to opinions they favor, even though they are supposed to be content neutral platforms. Internet browser algorithms often tend to give preference in their search engine results to websites expressing viewpoints in favor with the left-wing Establishment.Continue reading
King Solomon wrote, “Of making many books there is no end” (Ecclesiastes 12:12). But of all the countless books that have been written, is there any that reliably answers the most fundamental and important questions of life? Why do we exist? What is our nature? Is there a God, and if so, what is God like? What does God expect of us? Can we know the true God? Does God love us? Is there a path that can put an end to violence, unnecessary suffering and sorrow? What happens when we die? Is there a way to eternal life, and if so, what is it?
Believe it or not, there is such a book, a book that has the answers to these questions, and other questions vital to the life of every human. That book is called the Bible. The Bible is unlike any other, and has no equal, because it is God’s revelation to mankind of knowledge that can be found in no other source.
Do you know what the Bible says? Have you read it? Have you studied the Bible diligently to learn what God wants you to know? Why study the Bible? In this article you will find answers to this question of vital importance to every human being.Continue reading