In this “falling away” from the truth that God had restored in the Church through Herbert W. Armstrong during the Philadelphian Era, approximately one-third of the Church moved away from those teachings and adopted the teachings of traditional Christianity. Another third of the scattered Church simply gave up on the truth and religion of any kind.
This left approximately 32,000 baptized members who became dispersed among these 600+ splinter groups. Within these scattered groups of people, there are many who have held onto a similar hope that the Church might once again become one—reunited by God into His one true Church in a single organized body.
Although some groups have met with one another to discuss various kinds of cooperation, there has never been any real move toward any uniting into a single organization. As some of these scattered “baptized members” have come to understand, only God can really bring people together again because the leadership in these groups are fully void of any such ability or purpose.
The good news is that God is going to reunite His Church into a single organized body once again. It will begin to happen in only a couple of days and the potential number of previously baptized members (before the apostasy in 1994) that God is going to grant this opportunity to is 63,000. This will include previously baptized members from some who became deceived and went the direction of “traditional Christianity,” and it will include even more who will come from those who simply gave up on the Church, and finally the largest percentage will include those who were dispersed into the 600+ splinter groups.
This is indeed very good news! It is good news that has only now been given in these last few weeks, and it all reveals the kind of love and mercy God has for His Church and those who were scattered through the apostasy.
A Contradiction for the Scattered Church
The word “contradiction” describes a unique condition expressed in one manner or another by the vast majority of baptized people who were scattered after the “falling away.” Although the Church experienced the kind of dispersion (scattering) referenced above, very few seem willing to acknowledge that the Church experienced the Biblical “falling away” from the truth that is described in II Thessalonians. Yet the evidence that nearly two-thirds of the scattered Church no longer holds onto the foundational truths of God’s Church, reveals that there was a very great “falling away” from the truth of God—indeed an apostasy!
The reality that the remaining third, who have desired to hold onto some form of the foundational truths, cannot agree on those truths and are all scattered into over 600 different bodies of people, reinforces the truth of the effects of an apostasy. The denial of such devastation upon God’s Church being the result of an apostasy is to compound the contradiction that exists in so many people’s lives.
Though a very few will acknowledge an apostasy occurred, these same “few” cannot grasp the contradiction in their lives to deny that the apostasy was the very sign of Christ’s return to this earth at this end-time. God stated through Paul that Christ’s return could not and would not take place until this event happened in His Church. To acknowledge that Christ’s return is now at hand and that an apostasy did occur would mean that the rest of the story in II Thessalonians 2 would need to be acknowledged. It is about the “man of sin” who is also referred to as the “son of perdition.”
There was one who betrayed Jesus Christ and was referred to as the “son of perdition” at the time of Christ’s quick trial and sentence of death at his first coming. God revealed through Paul that at the time of the apostasy there would be another man who would betray Jesus Christ—one who was “set” in authority in His Church. These basic truths have been published for the scattered Church from the beginning by this organization of the Church of God – PKG. Acceptance of this basic message from God in II Thessalonians 2 is necessary for anyone who was baptized before the “falling away” in order for them to progress forward in understanding of “how” and “why” this apostasy occurred and what it portends.
Some scattered people can acknowledge portions of these events but seem unwilling or unable to “hear” the whole matter. Many still hold to a belief that the “man of sin” referred to in these verses is about the Pope. Nothing could be farther from the truth, as the Pope has never known the truth and he has no power or affect upon God’s Church.
Having said all this, as it has been said so many times before over the past 14 years, we have now come to the end and Jesus Christ is now going to return on May 27th. This event will catch the whole world off guard—even the Church that was scattered. But it will afford a great opportunity to 63,000 baptized people who were scattered after the apostasy to once again be reunited as God’s Church into a single organized body and to be given opportunity to live on into the new millennial age of Christ’s rule on earth.
The very fact that people have not received the “sign” of Christ’s coming being the events of II Thessalonians 2 is the very reason they have not received what was to follow just before the return of Jesus Christ. It is the story contained in Revelation about God sending His two end-time witnesses (and prophets) who would lead His Church up to the very moment of Christ’s coming. We are NOW there! The job of God’s two witnesses is nearly complete.
Christ’s coming is at hand, and it is just as God said it would be: “But as it was in the days of Noah, so shall it be also in the coming of the Son of man. For as in the days that were before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark, and they did not know until the flood came, and took them all away. So shall it also be in the coming of the Son of man” (Mat. 24:37-39).
It will be the same right up until nuclear weapons begin to be used on the earth. An automatic response of nations will spark immediate retaliation to real or imagined enemies. Such events will be so rapid and have the potential of being so devastating that God must quickly intervene by stopping it as He sends His Son back to this earth to become King of kings.
Man’s governments must be brought to an end before mankind annihilates himself. God’s timing is perfect at the end of 6,000 years of man’s self-rule. Man cannot govern himself without destroying himself. That is God’s recorded message to mankind through all the prophets—that only His Son, the Messiah (Christ), can govern mankind in righteousness and true justice for all people. Thank God the millennial reign of Jesus Christ has now come.
Thank God that the resurrection of the Holy Roman Empire is so short lived. That system is perfectly described in the Book of Daniel as iron mixed with clay. It is strong in phases of its construction and power, but not held together by anything that fully binds it as one. This describes ten nations who form the nucleus of the European Union today. Yet this union will only experience power together for one hour. It arises quickly as one and is brought to an end as quickly as it arose: “And the ten horns which you saw are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet, but receive power as kings one hour with the beast” (Rev. 17:12).
Yes, events during the end-time have materialized in ways that have not been fully clear to God’s Church through time—even to now, but the events are sure and prophecies certain. But all is happening in a manner that God only reveals when it is His time to do so.
Although we are now ready to enter the Millennium and the world must experience one more quick and very painful war of horrific destruction, the story contained throughout the pages of the New Testament is about His Church—and it still is. When God individually “calls” and brings anyone into the special and personal relationship of fellowship in His Church, with Him and His Son and others who have been called, He enters into a “spiritual” relationship of Godly love experienced in and with each and every person called.
That relationship is far more important and of far greater value than the “physical” kind of relationship that existed with the nation of Israel. The “spiritual” relationship with “spiritual Israel”—His Church—is one that leads into His Family—into everlasting life with God. Though God loves all His creation, all of mankind, His timing and purpose in them does not fully begin until they are “called” into a relationship with Him—“called” into His Church where that relationship can blossom and grow.
However, the Church became lukewarm at the end of this age of mankind, and it was spewed out of God’s mouth—separated from His “spiritual” presence and from a “spiritual relationship” with Him. That is simply a “fact!” It is a “fact” that potentially 63,000 previously baptized members will have to address very quickly now, once they come face to face with the reality of Christ’s coming on this Pentecost, for these scattered baptized members do not “see” nor believe that Christ’s coming is imminent for this world.
After being separated from God’s “spiritual” presence and from a “continuing” spiritual relationship with Him, the scattered Church grew weaker and weaker after the apostasy in 1994. It could not accept the truths contained in II Thessalonians 2, and as the scattered body became weaker it began to lose basic spiritual thinking and insight. Before Herbert W. Armstrong died and the Philadelphia Era of God’s Church ended, he spoke many times of the Church being the “spiritual” temple. He explained how the Jews were not qualified to rebuild a physical temple and how the temple being spoken of in scripture was actually about God’s Church.
It is understandable how the Jews in Christ’s day did not understand the concept of a “spiritual temple,” as they mocked him concerning what they did not understand about the temple being rebuilt in three days. Jesus spoke of his resurrection—of his spiritual life and his spiritual temple. Today, the vast majority of those scattered “look” for a physical temple or at least an altar to be built in the temple region of Jerusalem. People have simply slid backward, farther and farther from spiritual insight and understanding. That which is spiritual is foggy or not seen at all, and now those truly spiritual things have only physical meaning to most.
But God has a plan to reawaken and rekindle His life “in” previously baptized members. As God’s words have not been received from God’s own end-time prophet, He is going to bring all living baptized members to a day of shock and reality that will finally provide the most powerful moment of truth. The reality of nuclear devastation striking the earth along with another very “personal” and shocking event will awaken most to reality, fear, and repentance.
The final event that is coming upon God’s Church that was scattered is one they all will come to personally experience and cannot deny—for all other warnings, pleas, and admonitions have been denied and ignored. Nuclear war cannot be denied! Neither can the death of 7,000 previously baptized members be ignored (denied) which will consist mostly of those in leadership and especially those in the ministry. God has made it clear that such people are not going to be allowed to live on into the millennial reign of Jesus Christ, but they must await the final hundred years to be resurrected and then repent of their part in the devastation and direct involvement in the weakening of God’s own Church.
This matter of 7,000 dying is the story that follows the job God gave to his two end-time witnesses. His own witnesses to His own Church have been rejected, mocked, and ridiculed. This response of God’s own scattered people is in reality a response to God and not to two people who are easily looked down upon in physical expectation and stature.
As “spiritual” understanding of God’s temple (His Church) is not perceived any longer by God’s scattered Church, neither do people grasp the meaning of “spiritual” Jerusalem being the same kind of reference to God’s own Church.
The answer to “why 63,000” is because that is what God says it can be! More information concerning the 63,000 scattered members who can potentially be reunited after Christ’s coming is covered in the most recent sermon series entitled, “God’s Infinite Mercy.”
But as a synopsis, I will cover the basic meaning of what God reveals as the finish of His work through His two end-time witnesses. Not only has the Church that was scattered failed to recognize the sign of Christ’s coming to the Church contained in the events of II Thessalonians 2, but God’s two witnesses have not been recognized and their job is nearly over. That is the timing where we come into the story contained in the Book of Revelation about God’s two witnesses.
Revelation 11 states that God’s two witnesses die in the streets of Jerusalem. This is not a literal physical death in a literal physical location as has been believed. It is about an attitude and spirit of God’s scattered Church toward His own two witnesses for the time of their work—3 ½ years. Jerusalem is about the scattered Church and streets concern the “ways” of all the 600+ scattered groups that make up this “spiritual” condition of Jerusalem at the end.
“After three and one-half days [prophetic 3 ½ years] the Spirit of life from God entered into them [not physical life, but spirit life as the two witnesses are changed from mortal to immortal at Christ’s return], and they stood upon their feet [were made to “stand” in God—in His truth—in the sight of others once God shows all the scattered body irrefutable proof of their “standing” with Him through this resurrection] and great fear fell upon them who saw them” (Rev. 11:11). This is not talking about the world, but it is talking about the scattered Jerusalem who is struck with fear when they are brought face to face with this reality and truth of the resurrection of God’s two witnesses to immortal life as part of the 144,000.
“And they [God’s two witnesses] heard a great voice from heaven saying unto them, ‘Come up here.’ And they ascended up to heaven in a cloud, and their enemies beheld them” (Rev. 11:12). These two witnesses are not received by the scattered body as being brothers spiritually, nor as sent from God, but spiritually they are received as enemies to their belief and understanding of God’s will.
“And the same hour [when they are resurrected to spiritual life] there was a great earthquake [Gk – “shaking.” Used prophetically of a shaking of God’s people], and the tenth part of the city [Jerusalem—the scattered Church, not physical Jerusalem] fell, and in the earthquake [shaking] there were 7,000 ‘individually named’ [Gk. word omitted from KJV] people who were slain, and the remainder [Gk. – ‘the others’, ‘the rest’] were made afraid [brought to fear], and gave glory to the God of heaven” (Rev. 11:13-14).
This describes a scattered Church that God awakens through the reality of what they must now face. A nuclear war has erupted and Jesus Christ is returning in the atmosphere of this earth. God’s two witnesses are changed from mortal to immortal. Then 7,000 “named” (literally named by God and not random) individuals die, which includes first and foremost the ministry and other leading and well known people in the scattered groups. It also includes those who push themselves forward as “teachers” or individuals who are in the “know” about matters in God’s Church, especially in their attacks against God’s witnesses.
The 7,000 who die are the ten percent of the city that fell. There remains 63,000 who can now come to an awakening where they can now truly “give glory to the God of heaven,” after accepting His truth given through His two witnesses.
At this point, our job is done. Our work has come to an end as God’s witnesses. This is the final posting for this site and it is the final admonition to God’s scattered people. The Church is about to be reunited—just not in a manner that anyone scattered can conceive. The end-time is nearly over and the long awaited millennial reign of Jesus Christ is now nearly here.
As a final posting I am also informing all readers that a final prerecorded sermon will be posted on the Church site that can be used this Sabbath. It is recommended for those who want to use that sermon for this Sabbath that you download it as soon as it is posted so you will have it on hand. It is also recommended to those in the U.S. and Canada to either listen to it on Friday evening, especially for those in the western time zones or early Sabbath morning for those in the east.
As it was written in the last words of the first book, The Prophesied End-Time, I will end this final post with what was stated in that last sentence.
As it says in the next to the last verse of God’s word, “Even so, come, Lord Jesus.”