Greetings from Charlotte,
We had visitors here in Charlotte from around the world to meet with various departments. Mr. Martin Montgomery and his family, Mr. Lawdi Ferreira, Mr. and Mrs. Kinnear Penman and Mr. Stuart Wachowicz all left on Wednesday to return to Australia, South Africa, the Philippines and Canada, respectively. Most dropped by after serving at the Ohio Teen Camp, but Mr. Wachowicz made a short one-day trip from Toronto. Dr. Meredith was pleased to see them and be briefed on what is happening in their respective areas. The personal contact with these men and their wives helps us keep unified and on track. It is also valuable to share ideas and find better ways to preach the Gospel around the world. Mr. and Mrs. Ames will be in Indianapolis this weekend for services and Mr. Ames and Mr. Lambert Greer will make a Tomorrow’s World Presentation on Sunday. Living University got off to an excellent start this week with 240 students registered for online classes, including 14 on-campus students here in Charlotte and one in Clarendon, Australia. Dr. Douglas Winnail will be focusing more on the News and Prophecysection that is found in this publication with the goal in mind of increasing the subscriber base of this valuable resource. We already have 21,000 subscribers who receive a digital copy each week and this indicates it reaches far more than our member base. If you haven’t done so, you too can sign up to receive the TW News and Prophecy each week (see details below). Please pray for our brethren in Louisiana who have sustained serious losses of property in the current flooding, however, they are all safe at this time.—GEW
News and Prophecy Subscription
In order to subscribe for a weekly edition of the TW News and Prophecy, go to thebottom of the Tomorrow’s World Web site. Under the column heading “Publications,” go to “E-mail Subscriptions” and enter your name and e-mail address and select “TW News & Prophecy.” When you register for a digital subscription, you will receive a color version of the News and Prophecy at your e-mail address each week.
Tupelo, Mississippi, Tomorrow’s World Bible Study
The Tomorrow’s World Presentation Bible Study in Tupelo last Sabbath went well. There were 12 attentive and responsive guests, despite some routes being blocked because of protests being held not far away. After the presentation on “Hope for America,” all but one guest stayed for over an hour, asking questions and enjoying the great snacks provided by the brethren. All expressed appreciation for the Bible Study and some wanted to know when there would be another and if we would start a congregation in the area. One man said he had followed Mr. Herbert Armstrong for many years and even attended the Global Church of God for a while, but after he moved, he could not find us any longer. He has been following Tomorrow’s World now and is excited about being able to attend Sabbath services again, now that he knows where we meet. Overall, it was a great Sabbath and it is evident that the great God is finishing the Work that Mr. Armstrong referred to in his last letter, when he stated that a greater Work lies yet ahead. Thank God for this Work!—Anthony Stroud
Feast of Tabernacles
Local Church Services on the Day of Atonement and the Sabbath Before the Feast
Pastors: If you have not yet sent in the plans in your areas for Services on the Day of Atonement (October 12) and the Sabbath immediately preceding the Feast (October 15), please do so right away so that the information can be compiled for posting on the Web site. That is a help to brethren planning their travels to the Feast. Thank you to those who have already responded.
Activity Registration and Payment Now Open!—Repeat Announcement
All LCG members and guests attending the Feast of Tabernacles are now able to register for activities at their respective Feast sites. Payments for activities are also enabled. Activity registration and payment can be made via your MyLCG account, through the Festival Web site. To access it, go to www.lcg.org, and click on the link “Feast of Tabernacles.”
Feast of Tabernacles Sermon CDs—Repeat Announcement
Attention Pastors: The deadline to submit the names of brethren who will be unable to attend the Feast and who wish to receive a set of the Feast of Tabernacles sermons on CD is September 12 for recipients in the U.S. (Sermons are available in English, French or Spanish.) Please send these names to the Church Administration Department at firstname.lastname@example.org. Note: Feast sermons will also be uploaded (one per day) during the Feast at www.lcg.org, for those who have Internet access.
New Semester Underway
This semester’s classes opened on Monday and our on-campus classes here in Charlotte began on Wednesday morning. As of today, we have 169 students enrolled for credit and 71 registered to audit classes, for a total of 240 students for the semester. We have 15 students in residence—14 in Charlotte and one in Clarendon, South Australia. Enrollment for credit increased 37.7 percent. This is a record enrollment for Living University. Overall, it is a 29.4 percent increase over last fall. We anticipate an exciting and rewarding semester for our students. Next week, we host the faculty reception for new students and the dedication of theSheryl Manor women’s residence, in honor of Mrs. Sheryl Meredith, who set a warm, loving Christian example.—Michael Germano
Real Philadelphia Christians: The Scriptures reveal that Philadelphian Christians are focused on doing the Work of God (Revelation 3:8-12). That important mission includes carrying out the instructions of Jesus Christ to preach the Gospel (Mark 16:15), to warn the world of impending events (Matthew 24) and preparing a people to reign on earth with Jesus Christ in the coming Kingdom of God (Luke 1:17). However, the name “Philadelphia” means “brotherly love,” and true Philadelphians will follow Jesus’ admonition to “love one another” (John 15:12-17). They understand how Jesus defined a real Philadelphia Christian, “By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another” (John 13:34-35). As we see the world becoming more selfish, crass, dis-united and brutal (2 Timothy 3:1-5), let’s all look for ways to show real “brotherly love” toward others. In this, the world will come to recognize real Philadelphia Christians as Jesus’ true disciples.
Have a profitable Sabbath,
Douglas S. Winnail
News and Prophecy—August 18, 2016
Boko Haram’s Other Crime: The tragic plight of hundreds of girls kidnapped by Boko Haram in Nigeria have been in the news for nearly two years, but there has been little mention of some 10,000 boys kidnapped by Boko Haram to use as child soldiers (Wall Street Journal, August 12, 2016). Boys as young as age five have been taught to fight and kill by teenage boys fearing for their own lives. Many of these boys have been sent into battle unarmed and often under the influence of opiates. One boy who escaped from Boko Haram said they were told by their young instructors, “It’s all right for you to kill and slaughter even your parents” (ibid.). A former child hostage describing the training camps said, “If you go there, you can see 12-year-olds talking about burning down a village” (ibid.). Bible prophecy has long foretold, “in the last days perilous times will come… men will be lovers of themselves… unloving [inhuman, without natural affection]… brutal, despisers of good” (2 Timothy 3:1-5). These same violent behaviors were rampant in the pagan Roman Empire during the days of the apostles (Romans 1:28-31). The Bible reveals that the evils and brutality of this world are due to the influence of a powerful spirit being, Satan the devil (2 Corinthians 4:4), who is described as “a murderer from the beginning” (John 8:44). Thankfully, the evils of the world will come to an end when Jesus Christ returns to this earth as the “prince of peace” to establish His Kingdom (Isaiah 9:6). For more information on this peace-filled future, read “Will Wars Ever Cease?”
The Folly of Gender Therapy: For adolescents caught up in the transgender quagmire, the side effects of hormone therapy include: increased risk of cancer, increased risk of osteoporosis, decreased fertility, unknown neurological side effects, increased risk of blood clots and stroke, irreversible side effects and more (PBS, June 30, 2015). In the confusing world of political correctness, parents and doctors alike are increasingly choosing gender therapy when children express uncertainty about their gender. Amazingly, doctors prescribe such therapies (either chemically delaying puberty or giving opposing gender hormone treatment) in spite of being aware that the side effects of such treatments are very much “unknown” (ibid.). The sad irony is that these same doctors have taken an oath to “do no harm.” In the intellectual and emotional confusion related to transgender issues, many physicians today are actually helping fulfill the prophecy, “Professing to be wise, they became fools” (Romans 1:22). The Bible has also long warned, “There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death” (Proverbs 14:12). Sadly, in their desire to appease anxious parents, many physicians are adding to the confusion and contributing to future problems. For more insight into why transgender and homosexuality have become such high profile issues despite the well-documented risks, be sure to read our article on “The New Normal?”
Twin Disasters Strike United States: Over the weekend, torrential rains caused “epic” flooding in Louisiana, requiring 30,000 rescues from 40,000 damaged homes in what appears to be the “worst flooding in Louisiana history” and the “worst natural disaster in the United States since Superstorm Sandy that hammered the East Coast in 2012” (AP, August 16, 2016; LA Times, August 17, 2016; CBS/AP, August 17, 2016). Louisiana governor, John Bel Edwards said, “This is a historic flooding event. We are seeing unprecedented flood levels” (ibid.). Meanwhile, California has been set ablaze by wildfires fueled by the state’s fifth year of drought. The most recent fire, just east of Los Angeles has “rapidly scorched through 30,000 acres” and may force “more than 80,000 people to evacuate” their homes (LA Times, August 17, 2016). A veteran firefighter commented, “It hit hard. It hit fast… with an intensity we hadn’t seen before” (ibid.). God warned modern Israelite nations—which are promoting homosexuality, same-sex marriage and transgenderism—that due to their sinful lifestyles and rejecting His laws, they would face two weather extremes: “I made it rain on one city, I withheld rain from another city” (Amos 4:7), and “The Lord will afflict you with… fiery heat and drought, and with blight and mildew; they shall pursue you until you perish” (Deuteronomy 28:22, NRSV). The God of the Bible will not be “mocked” (Galatians 6:7). God is using the weather to humble a proud nation. To learn more, read our informative booklet Who Controls the Weather?—Scott Winnail, Danielle Pierre, Justin Ridgeway and Francine Prater