September 20, 2016
September 20th, 2016
Dear Brethren and Co-Workers with Christ,
Greetings from Charlotte, NC! Just over 67 years ago, in September of 1949, I got off a Greyhound bus in Pasadena, CA. I had been working at a summer job for the maintenance crew of a big Bureau of Reclamation dam project in the mountains north of Boise, Idaho. At that point, my life changed dramatically. For I had come to Pasadena to attend Ambassador College and try to learn the purpose for human existence: Why are we alive? What is the real goal of life, etc.?
During my time at Ambassador, I was not disappointed. For I found that the President of Ambassador College and of the Radio Church of God, Herbert W. Armstrong, really understood and was able to clearly explain and prove the vital truths of life. Also, Mr. Armstrong constantly radiated a genuine faith in Almighty God. For he knew—and knew that he knew—that a very real and personal God created the earth and all of us and was the ultimate Ruler in the kingdoms of men.
Back in the late 1940s and early 50s, I saw how Mr. Armstrong—on the radio and in person—described how Germany would rise again and become the leading nation of a coming European Empire. How the United States and Britain would be brought down from our pride and prestige if we did not deeply repent of breaking God’s laws. How we would soon begin to lose control of the vital “sea gates” which God has promised the descendants of Abraham (Genesis 22:17). Later, Mr. Armstrong predicted again and again that the hundreds of thousands of Russian troops, tanks and guns would be withdrawn from the eastern European nations and that the Berlin Wall would come crashing down! I tell you sincerely that all of these specific prophecies Mr. Armstrong proclaimed have come about or are in the process of coming about right now.
Mr. Armstrong was led by God to understand and predict specific events which Billy Graham, Oral Roberts, Jerry Farwell and other so-called prophetic “preachers” had no understanding of whatsoever. For God did not call them to full understanding of His Word and of His purpose. These prophetic events—including the removal of the vital “sea gates”—affected the lives of hundreds of millions of people all over the earth. For these sea gates—as many of you read daily in your newspapers—are even now vital in influencing world events and the outcome of wars. Herbert W. Armstrong had the faith and the courage to “stand alone” and proclaim these powerful events in a way that no one else was able to do!
In the early years of this Work, I had the opportunity to assist Mr. Armstrong for thousands of hours, to have hundreds of meals with him, and to get to know him as a “second father” as God used him to help build the Work of God. Now, at age 86, I am trying to carry on that Work with all my heart and with all my strength.
As more of you readers and co-workers begin to understand how these prophetic events “are happening” all around you, I hope you will want to get “on board” and become an active part of the very Work of the living Christ at this “time of the end.” Thousands of us have had to be willing to “come out” of this present society and, in many instances, “stand alone” in being willing to genuinely obey our Creator and prepare for the coming Government of God soon to be set up on this earth. We know that we will be rewarded for all eternity if we heed God’s warning: “Deliver those who are drawn toward death, and hold back those stumbling to the slaughter. If you say, ‘Surely we did not know this,’ does not He who weighs the hearts consider it? He who keeps your soul, does He not know it? And will He not render to each man according to his deeds?” (Proverbs 24:11-12).
Dear brethren and co-workers, are you personally “stirred to action” by the total collapse of nominal Christianity in our nations, and of the increasing downgrading of decency and human dignity in our present society under the sway of Satan the Devil? Are you, personally, willing to go “all out” to help build the final Work of God which will eventually SHAKE this world before His Son returns?
Or are you part of the “take it easy” or “don’t get too excited” attitude that is affecting millions of professing Christians around the world and even thousands of God’s own people? For the prominent attitude at the time of the end affecting God’s people will be what God calls “Laodicean.” It is described in Revelation 3:15-16: “I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot. So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth.”
Thousands of our brethren are even now preparing for the soon-coming Feast of Tabernacles. It will be preceded by the Feast of Trumpets and the Day of Atonement—two of the commanded festivals of God Almighty. In fact, as many of you know, the inspired Word of God tells us that after Christ comes back as King of kings: “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” (Zechariah 14:16-17).
So the returning Jesus Christ will return with overwhelming power, and He will not be putting up with a lot of whining, arguing or “making excuses” which many professing Christians display today. For then, every human being on the earth will learn to keep the Feast of Tabernacles! All nations will learn to obey their Creator! However, if you begin to respond now, you can be part of what Christ is doing, and you can be on His “team” as a king and priest in His very Kingdom forever. As God’s Word 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).
This Work of Tomorrow’s World is being used by Almighty God to proclaim the specific prophecies of the Bible and to teach and train those God calls and to prepare them to rule under Christ with love, with mercy and with wisdom.
This “Work” continues to grow in many ways, and the last few months have been increasingly busy as far as our Internet efforts go. For example, since I last wrote, we launched two new and greatly improved Tomorrow’s World Websites—one in the Spanish language and the other in the Afrikaans language. And starting in September, we added a link from the TomorrowsWorld.org Web site to the “TheBibleSaysThat.com” Web site, which has more than doubled the Web site visits to the TheBibleSaysThat.com Web site. Additionally, we just finished an advertising campaign on “Roku” to encourage more people to install the Tomorrow’s World Roku channel where they can view our extensive telecast and Webcast library and can even watch Spanish and French telecasts. This recent advertising campaign brought our Roku install base to well over 45,000 installs!
As many of you know, with many people “cutting the cord” on mainstream television, it is important to be able to reach those people with the telecast “over the Internet” as well as through traditional cable and satellite television. We must preach the Gospel to all the world as Jesus Christ commanded His church in Mark 16:15 and elsewhere, and much of the world now—especially the younger generations—are looking for content on the Internet. So we are also using the Internet in increasingly effective ways, such as creating “local” advertising campaigns on Facebook and our Web sites when we plan to conduct Tomorrow’s World Presentations in various cities, or through more localized Internet advertising to promote the telecast in various cities throughout the world. As I mentioned in a prior letter, we are setting up local Internet advertising in cities around the world, from Perth to Dallas, to better promote the telecast on local television channels. By the Feast of Tabernacles time, we hope to have set up this additional, “local” Internet advertising in about 40 cities around the world.
Lately, we have been refining our “Webcast” approach in a few ways, including recently beginning to use “playlists” for our Webcasts, similar to how we have long offered playlists for the telecast. Our Webcasts have been very popular on the Internet, especially with some of the younger generation, often reaching about 20,000 or more views for each one, when views from YouTube, Facebook and Roku are all combined. By making some minor adjustments, such as new graphic “thumbnails” for these videos and creating playlists, we make it easier for people to find and watch certain topics.
It is exciting to see the doors that God has opened for us using various Internet technologies and platforms to start to produce more “fruit.” For example, for years we have been working to build our Facebook pages, and our paid Facebook “reach” now averages about 1,200,000 people each month! And Facebook is now becoming more popular for video. For example, we have had more than 100,000 video views on the English-language Tomorrow’s World Facebook page alone. All of this “Facebook work” produces not only a “witness” but also often produces questions and real “conversations.” We are currently averaging about 600 to 700 conversations each month on our Tomorrow’s World Facebook page, with some of those conversations becoming questions about doctrine or, occasionally, people asking to attend Sabbath services. The same is happening to a lesser extent with our French and our Spanish Facebook pages, and even some with our Twitter page, which is now at a little over 50,000 “followers” and adding a few hundred each month.
Please join me in praying that God will powerfully bless all of these efforts to proclaim His message to the entire world! And, for your own sakes, learn to serve the God who gives you life and breath with “all your might.” For God certainly indicates very clearly in the example of the Laodiceans that He wants us to have “fire in our belly!” God’s Word tells us: “Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might; for there is no work or device or knowledge or wisdom in the grave where you are going” (Ecclesiastes 9:10).
Certainly, all of our lives will eventually come to an end. We will return to the dust. In the sight of God, what will be your legacy and your level of commitment to reach this world with His message at the time of the end? Let all of us do all we can with our time, our talents and our resources to help get Christ’s message to this terribly mixed-up world while we can!
With Christian love,
Roderick C. Meredith