Will you be insisting on the word of God today?
September 30, 2008 is the Feast of Trumpets, Rosh Hashanah. This is the first day of the seventh month.
(LEV. 23: 23-25) 23 Then the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 24 “Speak to the children of Israel, saying: ‘In the seventh month, on the first day of the month, you shall have a sabbath-rest, a memorial of blowing of trumpets, a holy convocation. 25 You shall do no customary work on it; and you shall offer an offering made by fire to the LORD.’”
Now, for those in the various COG's, I'm certain you will be hearing a lot about trumpets today. Most certainly you should be hearing about how trumpets were used by Moses and the Israelites. It is, after all, a memorial - a looking back - of trumpets. I know many of you will instead hear messages about the seven trumpet plagues; but you cannot have a memorial of the future. A memorial is a preservation of a memory; a commemoration. Have you ever asked why God would want the ancient Israelites to remember the seven very destructive trumpet plagues? "To warn mankind, of course," would be the standard response. How is this?
Think about it. It isn't a looking forward. The ancient Israelites who have lived and died thousands of years before the second return of Christ were supposed to be wary of it? Are you certain? No, that can't be right.
Or perhaps it is supposed to be a warning to the end-time? People who do not regard the Feast of Trumpets or understand it are supposed to be warned by it.. how? Is it not part of your beliefs that God has to 'open the minds' of people to understand the holy days and the plan of God? Then how can people without their 'minds opened' possibly understand it? That can't be right either.
Or perhaps you have heard that it is an annual reminder for you. You, who will be protected from the trumpet plagues. You, who follow the laws of God. You who are the hand-selected and chosen few. You who have your minds opened. You who have God's Spirit in you helping you. You who need no warning. Are you certain you need an annual reminder of the trumpet plagues? Is today the Day of Damocles? So, God holds the trumpet plagues over you once a year as an annual reminder that He will punish you if you mess up? How then does Jesus' sacrifice fit in? Does His sacrifice cover your mistakes or doesn't it? This certainly is the least right so far, by far!
Then what is it? Why this annual talk about the trumpet plagues? Is Revelation mentioned solely because it has the word "trumpet" in it?
If you say "It can be both", then please show me the chapter and verse where it says the Feast of Trumpets is anything other than a memorial of blowing of trumpets. Produce the verse that shows you should look forward to the end, then produce the logic to such a thing. I challenge you, as you should be challenging your ministry! Are you a Berean, or are you not? Have you just accepted something that is nowhere to be found in the word of God or have you PROVEN? You know Christ will return, and you believe trumpets will be part of that, but I don't ask you about that. I ask you to show me from the Bible where it says the Feast of Trumpets has anything to do with the return of Christ.
For almost thirty years I listened to sermons about the return of Christ on Trumpets. Are you aware that many splinter groups do not believe Christ will return on Trumpets? They believe the resurrection will be on Pentecost. Are you one of them? Then what does the Bible say to link the Feast of Trumpets with the final trumpet plagues? Already many people are realizing the vision Herbert Armstrong passed down was flawed.
Flawed?! How can an Apostle be wrong about something he specifically said would happen? (See my post on The Plain Error for more details on that subject.)
So then, what do we have? We have no Bible verses linking the Feast of Trumpets with the final trumpet plagues. Nothing links them, not one Biblical thing! What links them is the theory of a man who said the 7 holy days describe the plan of God... except that many people believe he got it wrong. I ask again - got it wrong? But.... if he got that wrong.... is there a slight possibility that he could be wrong about the link between the Feast of Trumpets and the final seven trumpet plagues of Revelation? Is there a slight chance? Answer that for yourself as soon as possible!
But certainly that's the only thing he is wrong about. It's neither here nor there. After all, you follow God, not a man. Right? Ask yourself this "Will I be paying the Holy Day Offering today?"
If you are like most people in the COGs, today you will hear an offertory message read from Deuteronomy 16.
(DEU. 16: 16) Three times a year all your males shall appear before the LORD your God in the place which He chooses: at the Feast of Unleavened Bread, at the Feast of Weeks, and at the Feast of Tabernacles; and they shall not appear before the LORD empty-handed.
Have you ever read that verse? Of course you've seen it more times than you can count, but have you ever READ it? Please tell me, where is the word "seasons" in that verse? Does is not say "three times"? Does it not list specifically the three times in a year: "at the Feast of Unleavened Bread, at the Feast of Weeks, and at the Feast of Tabernacles"? Those are specifically named holy days, not the wispy idea of seasons. Does not the entire chapter of Deuteronomy 16 deal with those three specific Holy Days? And again you can read Exodus 34: 18-24 and see the same thing. Please point out to me, then, where you get the phrase "three holy day seasons". Or please tell me where the Bible lays out three holy day seasons; spring, summer, and fall. Or please tell me why Pentecost - the "summer" holy day - nigh always falls in spring? Where is the "summer holy day season" if there are no holy days in it? About that offering you will give, did you know those were supposed to be burnt offerings? Where did any man get the authority to change that to money? "We have to give something." Right? Why not give Bibles? Why not give trumpets? Who said 'money is to be given in place of burnt offerings' anywhere in the Bible? Does it not make it perfectly clear what happened to all sacrifices? Does it not make it perfectly clear that Jesus fulfilled them (HEB. 10: 12)? Why, then, do you bring them back? Is Jesus' sacrifice insufficient?? Does the Bible itself not tell you what sacrifice a New Testament Christian is required to give?
(ROM. 12: 1) I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.
(EPH. 5: 2) And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma.
(HEB. 13: 15-16) 15 Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name. 16 But do not forget to do good and to share, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.
To sum up what we have so far - the Feast of Trumpets is a memorial of blowing trumpets, not a looking forward, but you will most likely be looking forward today; the holy days help you understand the plan of God but Herbert Armstrong is believed to be wrong about the plan of God that he taught Trumpets is supposed to picture; you will give an offering of money though the Bible says it should be burnt; you will be read Deuteronomy 16: 16 on Trumpets though it specifically mentions by name the three holy days it refers to; you will be giving an offering though the Bible says Jesus fulfilled them.
Are you certain you follow God and not a man? Are you so certain that you would bet your life on it? Are you sure you are not betting your life on it right now? Shouldn't you be certain?
Does the Bible not specifically say those who add to or take away from God's word will be cursed (DEU. 4: 2; DEU. 12: 32; ECC. 3: 14; REV. 22: 18-19)?! Perhaps you SHOULD think about those trumpet plagues after all!
Go; challenge your minister with these things. See if that one can answer these questions for you. They are that important! Because if you don't get those things from the Bible - from God - then from whom do you get them? From men! And if from men, then how can one ever claim "I follow God, not men"?
Friends and deeply loved by Christ, you owe it to yourself, to your family, and to Christ Jesus who died for you, to make certain that you know and follow those things that are in the word of God. I ask you once more, are you going to insist on the Bible truth today?