Church of God, New World Ministries

Bi-Monthly Letter - September-November 2014

30 November 2014
Greetings Everyone,
I am a little past due on getting this letter from the President out, for this I apologize. However, my reason is justifiable. Shortly after this year’s Feast of Tabernacles we experienced the death of three of our Church members—all within a one week period. In fact, we had two funerals on the same day, one being in West Virginia and the other in Kentucky. And another in Knoxville, TN the next day.
I have appreciated the opportunity of serving God’s people in the ministry for over thirty-four years. There are many tasks that I find pleasurable i.e., baptisms, counseling for baptism, preaching sermons on weekly Sabbaths and Holy Days, obtaining Holy Day sites and preparing for our annual Feast of Tabernacles, fellowshipping with brothers and sisters of like mind, ordinations, blessing of little children, to name a few. But the one task I dislike most is preaching funerals.
I believe it is the responsibility of the minister to provide HOPE to the family and friends of the departed one. However, many of those attending the funerals have been so deceived by the traditional concepts of death that they simply cannot grasp what we are trying to convey to them. Converted members of God’s Church understand what happens to man when he dies, but do you?
Traditional Christianity would have you believe that upon death the soul of the departed one separates from the body and wafts it way to heaven. But that is totally opposite from what the Bible says. Jesus himself said, “And no man hath ascended (gone) up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven” (John 3:13). If you believe what the Bible says, Jesus Christ is the only one that has lived in the flesh and is now in heaven. If that is the case, what then does happen to us when we die? Will man live again, and what HOPE can we give to the departed one if we tell them their loved one has not gone to heaven?
Job asked the question, “If a man die will he live again” (Job 14:14)? That is a question we all want answered since “it is appointed to man once to die” (Heb. 9:27). Death is something we all must come to grips with. So, then what does happen to us when we die?
Solomon wrote about death in Ecclesiastes 3 verses18-21. He said all die, man and beasts. And where did he say they went? “All go unto one place; all are of the dust, and all turn to dust again” (verse 20). When we die we go to the grave and deteriorate into dust, from which we came (Gen. 3:19). So, is that all there is to it, if so where is there HOPE?
Let’s continue in Ecclesiastes chapter 9 verses 2-6. Solomon wrote that the dead know nothing, neither do they have any part of what is going on in the world of the living. They are asleep. The Bible depicts death as sleep (I Thes. 4:13). So, when we die we go back to the grave and sleep. And then what?
Job said …“all the days of my appointed time will I wait, till my change come. Thou shalt call, and I will answer thee: thou wilt have a desire to the work of thine hands” (Job 14:14-15). Yes, the dead, those that are asleep, will wait in the grave until they are called (vs. 15). And then, at that calling, the dead will answer that calling (vs. 15).
Who is going to call and how will the dead answer that calling? Let’s let Christ answer that question, “Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice (the calling), And shall come forth (a resurrection): they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life…”(John 5:28-29). Yes, the Bible teaches that we die, go to the grave and remain there until the resurrection.
Paul explained the resurrection to the Church in Thessalonica. Read I Thessalonians 4:13-17. Paul explains that Christ returns with a shout (same as the calling) at the last (7th) trump and the dead in Christ will rise (resurrection). Then those that are alive at His coming will be changed. Changed into what? Changed into Spirit (I Cor. 15:42-52). Those resurrected with Christ will meet Him in the air. But, where do they go? Heaven? Hell? Absolutely not! They descend to Jerusalem to begin the establishment of the Kingdom of God on this earth (Zech. 14:4-5).
My friends, the hope of the dead is the resurrection. For a while the sting of death causes suffering and pain to the loved ones still living. But the hope of seeing their departed one again brings hope and consolation. They know that “God will wipe away all tears from their eyes: and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away” (Rev. 21:4). Their loved ones will enjoy peace throughout all eternity. That is hope.
If you would like to know more about the subject of death send for our DVD which includes the sermons “After Life”, “After Death, Then What”?, and “What is Death”? You may also learn more about this subject by typing “death” into the search engine at the top of the page.
If you would like to receive a copy of this year’s sermons from the Feast of Tabernacles, write, call or click below to request a copy of the DVD's from this year's Feast.
On behalf of the Church of God New World Ministries we would like to thank all of you who support this work. Without you, the FREE materials could not be sent out.
George Trent
To request the material(s) mentioned in this month’s letter:
  Request the NEW “God’s Master Plan” series Request the FREE materials online by clicking here
  Order the sermons about death Request the FREE materials online by clicking here
  Order the sermons from the 2014 Feast of Tabernacles Request the FREE materials online by clicking here
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