News Letter 5855-017
The 3rd Year of the 4th Sabbatical Cycle
The 24th year of the 120th Jubilee Cycle
The 24th day of the 4th month 5855 years after the creation of Adam
The 4th Month in the Third year of the Fourth Sabbatical Cycle
The 4th Sabbatical Cycle after the 119th Jubilee Cycle
The Third Year Tithe for the Widows and Orphans and Levites
The Sabbatical Cycle of Sword, Famines, and Pestilence
June 29, 2019
Shabbat Shalom to the Royal Family of Yehovah,
I know this is short notice, but in case some of you would like to go and see Noahs Ark, there is a tour leaving in July for the site. Here is the link. Sightedmoon.com is not involved but I should have thought of this long ago.
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Exclusive on this tour:
Fossil bed site
The original landing site of Noah’s ark
Newly discovered drogue stone (aka “anchor stone”)
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Come see where mankind restarted after the great flood. See and hear exciting new pieces of evidence for Noah’s ark and the flood. This 1-week tour will run all summer long in 2019.
Please click on the “Book Now” button on this page which will redirect you to the signup forms and payment options on our sister website. You will also be able to select the date for your tour on that page. The following dates are being offered (these dates could change):
July 8, 2019 – July 14, 2019
July 29, 2019 – August 4, 2019
***Tour price does not include extra days in Istanbul if you choose to stay longer nor does the price include your international ticket from your country to Istanbul, Turkey. International flights average $800-$1200 from the United States as an example. Any questions please let us know. We can help you book your international flights if you need assistance too.***
I have for many years heard from leaders of various groups calling for Unity.
Everyone wants you to join their group and be unified with them in their cause.
When I first began this walk I joined the Churches of God as it was through them I first learned about the Sabbath and Holy Days. While I was with them we grew in numbers to 150,000 members. And then after Herbert Armstrong died in 1986, various groups began to split and start up their own sect each claiming to be the one true apostle and they called for everyone else to join with them in Unity. I myself left the WWCG (World Wide Church of God) in 1994 having been with them since 1982. It was a hard decision to break away and no longer be United in faith and cause. But WWCG was now sounding more Catholic than the Pope and I just could not stay anymore.
So I went back to the worlds way of thinking. I began again to work 6 and 7 days a week and stopped keeping the Holy Days for a year and a half. Each time I cringed as I broke the 4th commandment, but one of the last things I had heard from WWCG was that it was OK to work on the Sabbath if you had to.
During that 1 1/2 year time I had begun to write out the things I knew to be true and could prove from the bible. Then I again decided to keep the Sabbath as I had again proven it to be true and the Holy Days. And I began to leave the house and rested on each Sabbath in my truck on some dead-end road studying and writing notes and I did this for 7 years.
Here is a note for some of you to consider.
In the 1980’s you could USE a computer, in the 1990’s you could HAVE a computer. The 1980s was when IBM PCs became popular and found homes in many white-collar offices of the United States. Microsoft pioneered the home computer in 1992 with the release of Windows 3.1. Even though Windows was not anything new by this time, 3.1 was the first commercially successful version of Windows, and gave Microsoft a big enough name for what was to come– Windows 95. Windows 95 was very highly anticipated, Microsoft spending millions on advertising to make sure everyone knew what they were up to. Windows 95 was released on August 24, 1995, and 1995 was considered the year computers became mainstream.
I had windows 3.1 and thought I was so advanced. My Brother had an IBM 286. It was during this time that I began to write my articles and keep them on the computer. It would be a few years later that you would be able to research almost anything and find it on the computer. I still used encyclopaedias at this time. This is now just 33 years ago and look at what we now do with computers. WOW!
In 2001 9/11 took place and then I began to attend The United Church of God. I was with them until 2006 when I left and have been running sightedmoon.com ever since. We had begun to teach about the Sabbatical years in 2005 at Sukkot in Vermont and again in Israel that same year.
Looking back the United Church of God has had many recent splits. The group I met with in Vermont all but disappeared. The Group in Israel is constantly calling for Unity so long as you are united with them in everything they say.
And that is the case for many of those who call for unity.
Many of those in the Hebrew Roots movement also called Messianics, begin to wear kippas, and Tzitzits and take on Jewish sounding names in order to conform with Judaism. They will say things like we want to be united with Judah our brother. They then start to keep the Hebrew calendar for the Holy Days, along with Channukah and Purim that are not found in the Torah. But they do them for Unities sake. They also keep the 4 other fast days not mentioned in the Torah on top of the Day of Atonement. Again they do this to be in unity with Judah.
When you question them about their Unity with Judah and tell them how Judah as a whole does not believe Yehshua was the Messiah nor do they consider the New Testament of any value, they then come up with some lame line about that being the exception. But this then means they are not in Unity with Judah. They are hypocrites.
Christians call for unity all the time so long as you are theologically aligned with their particular denomination. If you do not agree or say or teach things that they consider to be in error or wrong they kick you out just as United did to me when I began to teach about the Sabbatical years and go to Feast sites they did not approve of.
So then what is Unity?
Here are 25 scriptures teaching us to be United. As you go through this do note that all of them are from the New Testament with the exception of Psalm 133:1.
1. Ephesians 4:13 “Until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ.”
2. 1 Corinthians 1:10 “I appeal to you, brothers and sisters, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another in what you say and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly united in mind and thought.”
3. Psalm 133:1 “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is For brothers to dwell together in unity!”
4. Ephesians 4:2-6 “Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.”
5. Romans 15:5-7 “May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had, so that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.”
6. 1 Corinthians 3:3-7 “You are still worldly. For since there is jealousy and quarreling among you, are you not worldly? Are you not acting like mere humans? For when one says, “I follow Paul,” and another, “I follow Apollos,” are you not mere human beings? What, after all, is Apollos? And what is Paul? Only servants, through whom you came to believe–as the Lord has assigned to each his task. I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow. So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow.”
7. Philippians 2:1-4 “So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.”
8. John 13:35 “By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
9. John 17:23 “I am in them and you are in me. May they experience such perfect unity that the world will know that you sent me and that you love them as much as you love me.”
10. 1 John 3:14 “We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love our brothers. The one who does not love remains in death.”
11. Titus 3:9 “But avoid foolish controversies and genealogies and arguments and quarrels about the law, because these are unprofitable and useless.”
12. 1 Timothy 1:4-6 “Don’t let them waste their time in endless discussionof myths and spiritual pedigrees. These things only lead to meaningless speculations, which don’t help people live a life of faith in God. The purpose of my instruction is that all believers would be filled with love that comes from a pure heart, a clear conscience, and genuine faith.”
13. 2 Timothy 2:15-16 “Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth. Avoid godless chatter, because those who indulge in it will become more and more ungodly.”
14. Colossians 3:13-14 “Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.”
15. Hebrews 13:1 “Let brotherly love continue.”
16. 1 Peter 3:8 “Finally, all of you, be like-minded, be sympathetic, love one another, be compassionate and humble.”
17. Romans 12:4-5 “Just as our bodies have many parts and each part has a special function, so it is with Christ’s body. We are many parts of one body, and we all belong to each other.”
18. 1 Peter 4:10 “As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace.”
19. Romans 14:1-3 “As for the one who is weak in faith, welcome him, but not to quarrel over opinions. One person believes he may eat anything, while the weak person eats only vegetables. Let not the one who eats despise the one who abstains, and let not the one who abstains pass judgment on the one who eats, for God has welcomed him.”
20. Romans 14:21 “It is good not to eat meat or drink wine or do anything that causes your brother to stumble.”
21. Jude 1:3-4 “Dear friends, although I was very eager to write to you about the salvation we share, I felt compelled to write and urge you to contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to God’s holy people. For certain individuals whose condemnation was written about long ago have secretly slipped in among you. They are ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into a license for immorality and deny Jesus Christ our only Sovereign and Lord.”
22. Ephesians 5:11 “Have no fellowship with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them.”
23. 2 Corinthians 6:14 “Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness?”
24. Ephesians 5:5-7 “For of this you can be sure: No immoral, impure or greedy person–such a person is an idolater–has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God’s wrath comes on those who are disobedient. Therefore do not be partners with them.”
25. Galatians 1:7-10 “which is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let them be under God’s curse! As we have already said, so now I say again: If anybody is preaching to you a gospel other than what you accepted, let them be under God’s curse! Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ.”
When you or I go in front of those people who scream for unity and we share the Sabbath, Christians throw us out. If we go before Seventh Day Sabbath keepers and we share with them about the Holy Days of Lev 23, then they throw us out. If we go before Messianics and we teach them about the barley to begin the year at Aviv and the moon to begin the month, then they disfellowship us. If we go before Messianics who do keep the barley to begin the year and use the crescent moon to begin the month and we teach them about the Sabbatical years, then they throw us out. And if we use the name Yehovah and not God or Yahweh, then they will not listen to anything we say.
I am showing you this so that you can understand my problem. I have a group that is calling for love and unity. Admirable. They are growing by adding other groups to their own and everyone is speaking the same thing. On the things they differ, they are silent for unities sake.
Let me now share with you what Yehshua said
Luk 12:49 I have come to send fire on the earth. And what will I do if it is already kindled? But I have a baptism to be baptized with, and how I am pressed down until it is accomplished! Do you suppose that I have come to give peace on earth? I tell you, no, but rather division. For from now on, there shall be five in one house divided, three against two, and two against three. The father shall be divided against the son, and the son against the father; the mother against the daughter, and the daughter against the mother; the mother-in-law against her daughter-in-law, and the daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law.
Matthew 10:34-36 (MKJV)
34 Do not think that I have come to bring peace on earth. I did not come to send peace, but a sword. For I have come to set a man against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. And a man’s foes shall be those of his own household.
How can you have Unity if people are divided even in their own homes? I can vouch for this as I will be married this fall for 41 years. I began to walk this way of keeping the Sabbath and Holy Days in our 4th year of marriage. My wife to this day is still not a believer. Nor did any of my children or any other relatives ever take up this walk.
Knowing this, some of those who do not like what I say then start to quote Timothy to me because my wife is not submitted to my authority according to them.
Qualifications for Overseers
1Ti 3:1 Faithful is the Word: If anyone reaches out to overseership, he desires a good work. Then it behooves the overseer to be without reproach, husband of one wife, temperate, sensible, well-ordered, hospitable, apt at teaching, not a drunkard, not contentious, not greedy of ill gain, but gentle, not quarrelsome, not covetous, ruling his own house well, having children in subjection with all honor. (For if a man does not know to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?) not a novice, lest being puffed up he may fall into the condemnation of the Devil. But he must also have a good report from those on the outside, lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the Devil.
How is it possible to have UNITY in the home when Yehshua Himself said He was going to bring a sword and set members of the very same family against each other? Why would He do that when He is preaching Unity?
Can we have Unity with the wicked?
Isaiah 11:4 But with righteousness He shall judge the poor, and shall decide with uprightness for the meek of the earth. And He shall strike the earth with the rod of His mouth, and with the breath of His lips He shall slay the wicked.
And the wicked are those who are sinners.
1Jn 3:4 Everyone who practices sin also practices lawlessness, for sin is lawlessness.
So if they are not keeping the Sabbath there will be no unity. If they do not keep the Holy Days and even if they keep them at the wrong time they are still sinning and there can be no unity. If they refuse to keep the Sabbatical years then again how can we be unified with them?
When Yehovah comes He is not coming to bring Untiy to the world!
Malachi 3:2 But who can endure the day of His coming? And who shall stand when He appears? For He is like a refiner’s fire, and like fuller’s soap. And He shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver. And He shall purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may be offerers of a food offering in righteousness to Jehovah.
Malachi 4:1 For behold, the day is coming, burning like a fire pot; and all the proud, and every doer of wickedness, shall be chaff. And the coming day will set them ablaze, says Jehovah of Hosts, which will not leave root or branches to them.
Matthew 3:10 And now also, the axe is laid to the root of the trees. Therefore every tree which does not bring forth good fruit is cut down and cast into the fire. I indeed baptize you with water to repentance. But He who comes after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He shall baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire; whose fan is in His hand, and He will cleanse His floor and gather His wheat into the storehouse; but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.
Zechariah 11:4 For so says Jehovah my God: Feed the flock of the slaughter, those buying them kill them, and hold themselves not guilty. And those who sell them say, Blessed beJehovah, for I am rich; and their shepherds do not pity them. For I will never again pity the people of the land, says Jehovah; but lo, I will make the men come out, each one into his neighbor’s hand and into his king’s hand. And they shall strike the land, and I will not deliver out of their hand. And I fed the flock of slaughter, even the poor of the flock. And I took two staffs for myself; the one I called Kindness, and the other I called Union. And I fed the flock. I also cut off three shepherds in one month; and my soul was impatient with them, and their soul also despised me. And I said, I will not feed you; that which dies, let it die; and that which is to be cut off, let it be cut off. And those left, let them eat, each woman her neighbor’s flesh. And I took my staff Kindness, and broke it apart, to break My covenant which I had made with all the peoples. And it was broken in that day; and so the poor of the flock who were watching Me knew that it was the Word of Jehovah. And I said to them, If it is good, give My price; and if not, let it go. So they weighed My price thirty pieces of silver. And Jehovah said to me, Throw it to the potter, the magnificent price at which I was valued by them. And I took the thirty pieces of silver and threw them to the potter in the house of Jehovah. Then I broke My other staff Union apart, that I might break the brotherhood between Judah and Israel. And Jehovah said to me, Take to yourself yet the instruments of a foolish shepherd. For lo, I will raise up a shepherd in the land who will not care for those going to ruin, nor will he seek the young, nor will heal that which is broken, nor will he feed that which stands. But he shall eat the flesh of the fat and tear off their hoofs. Woe to the worthless shepherd who abandons the flock! The sword shall be on his arm and on his right eye; his arm shall be completely dried up, and his right eye shall be utterly darkened.
Does that sound like Yehovah is seeking Unity?
Psa 34:14 Depart from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it.
Psalm 34:14 The Hebrew uses the word shalom for the word peace. This word means much more than peace. It means wholeness, wellness, well-being, safe, happy, friendly, favour, completeness, to make peace, peace offering, secure, to prosper, to be victorious, to be content, tranquil, quiet, and restful.
The pictographic symbols for the word shalom (shin, lamed, vav, mem m w l c) reads “Destroy the authority that binds to chaos.”
The noun shalom is derived from the verbal root shalam, which means “to restore,” in the sense of replacing or providing what is needed in order to make someone or something whole and complete. So shalom is used to describe those of us who have been provided all that is needed to be whole and complete and break off all authority that would attempt to bind us to chaos.
It is our modern misunderstanding of the word shalom that is part of the problem. It is not peace as in wholeness, wellness, well-being, safe, happy, friendly, favour, completeness. We have forgotten if indeed you ever knew that it means to restore.
Mat 17:11 And answering Jesus said to them, Elijah truly shall come first and restore all things.
Luk 1:13 But the angel said to him, Do not fear, Zacharias. For your prayer is heard, and your wife Elizabeth shall bear you a son, and you shall call his name John. And you shall have joy and gladness, and many shall rejoice at his birth. For he shall be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall neither drink wine nor strong drink. And he shall be filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother’s womb. And he shall turn many of the sons of Israel to the Lord their God. And he shall go before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready a people prepared for the Lord. And Zacharias said to the angel, By what shall I know this? For I am old, and my wife is advanced in her days. And answering, the angel said to him, I am Gabriel, who stands before God. And I am sent to speak to you and to show you these glad tidings.
This is what John the Baptist was doing turning the heart of the children back to the Father before Yehshua came and was then killed.
Today it is the same thing. The Spirit of Elijah has been working for some time.
We have the Sabbath being restored by the Miller movement in the 1840s. Out of this came the Seventh Day Adventist and Seventh Day Baptists. They did not keep the Holy Days. In the 1930s Hebert Armstrong began the World Wide Church of God and they began to keep the Holy Days using the Hebrew calendar. Let’s get the actual chain of events here which includes the name of Yehovah at this time.
The recent history of the Sacred Name Movement is closely related to the history of the Church of God (Seventh Day). It appears that many who have joined the Sacred Name Movement originally were members of one or more of the Sabbath-keeping Churches of God.
Dodd and the Faith Magazine
Clarence O. Dodd states that he began to keep the Passover in 1928, and immediately began keeping the other Feast Days of the year. “After being thwarted in a determined effort to teach the importance of keeping these Holy Days in the group in which he was then affiliated,” Elder Dodd “broke away and inaugurated a magazine to proclaim the importance of this great Truth.”
Dodd had been instrumental along with A.N. Dugger during the 1933 Church of God, Seventh Day split, helping to form the Salem, West Virginia faction. He served as Secretary-Treasurer through the spring of 1939. When the church reacted strongly in opposition to his Feast Day teaching and asked him to resign, Elder Dodd began a new magazine in March, 1937, in order to continue to teach the keeping of the Feast Days.
It is interesting to note that Dodd co-author the book, A History of the True Church with A.N. Dugger, which was published in 1936. Many in the Salem group did keep the Feast Days during these years. Elders John Kiesz and Frank Walker continued to keep them, with Herbert Armstrong, until at least 1945. But in 1937 at a campmeeting in Eugene, Armstrong was forced out of the Church of God, Seventh Day, because he would not cease preaching about the Feast Days and Anglo-Israelism. It is indeed significant that Dodd should break away and start The Faith magazine in the same year, March of 1937.
Dodd “began to publish the [Sacred] Names [idea] in 1939,” says Jacob O. Meyer, but according to L.D. Snow it was October of 1938.
At first he used the name, “Jehovah,” but through continuous study, he began to see that the tetragrammaton should be transliterated as “YAHWEH,” pronounced “Yahway,” Dodd was baptized into the name of Yahshua in 1941 by Elder Earl Bigford of Michigan.
Further, “quite a number of ministers [in the Salem Church of God] . . . accepted the Feasts ultimately and some of them eventually accepted the Sacred Name . . . .” Among these were Elders William Bishop and William Bodine.
Armstrong?s Relations With Dodd
Jacob O. Meyer, current leader of the Sacred Names Movement, writes: “Among some of my interesting research material is a 1939 copy of The Faith magazine in which Elder C.O. Dodd advertised the Feast of Tabernacles which was held in Oregon under the direction of Elder Herbert W. Armstrong. A similar advertisement appears in 1941, in which Elder Dodd calls Mr. Armstrong ?a pioneer in this great truth.? The notice even hints strongly that some of that Oregon group [Armstrong?s] were using the Sacred Names!”
The Conns and Mrs. Bobbie Fisher, early converts through Armstrong?s preaching, strongly feel that Armstrong came to understand the Feast Days through self-study, and not through Dodd. But Mrs. Vera Henion, who with her husband Dave Henion moved to Oregon in October of 1934 (they were Church of God members previously in Nebraska), notes that there might have been some tie between Armstrong and Dodd. She herself learned much of her beliefs concerning the Holydays from Dodd?s tracts and articles. She took the Salem Bible Advocate, and might have learned something about the Feast Days from that source. She wrote questions to Dodd, and recalls that Armstrong?s knowledge of the Holydays was increased through her, as she gave him Dodd?s material and they studied them together. She recalls that a woman in Eugene (a big, fleshy woman, now deceased) started Armstrong on the Holydays. Mrs. Henion, who went to the Scravel Hill church, believes it was the latter part of 1935 that she started keeping the Holy Days, along with 40-60 others, including the Helms, McGills, Davis and Armstrongs.
It would be through Nehemia Gordon that the sighting of the moon to begin the month and the barley to begin the year would be revised. Here is what Nehemia is quoted as saying on this point.
I have been involved with the Biblical Calendar in one way or another since the 1980s, sighting new moons in Israel since 1993, and sending out new moon reports since 1995. When I first got involved in sighting new moons and looking for the Aviv Barley, I was only doing it for myself and the handful of Karaite Jews who participated with me in the endeavor. Over the years, people of other faiths and persuasions took interest and I welcomed anyone who wanted to respectfully participate in discovering God’s holy times.
Since this time when Nehemia first began we can say that tens of thousands are now keeping the Holy Days as they used to be kept according to the crescent moon to begin the month. Nehemia is also the one along with Keith Johnson to revive the use of the name Yehovah for Gods name.
In 1982 I began to keep the Sabbath with the World Wide Church of God and then in 2005 I learned from Nehemia Gordon and Michael Rood the sighting of the moon to begin the month and about the barley to begin the year. And from Keith and Nehemia that the name of God was Yehovah.
In 2005 I learn about the Sabbatical and Jubilee years and have since then collected over 45 proofs to confirm when they are in the past and in the future.
Each of us builds on the shoulders of those who went before us doing the work of Yehovah. All of this together is the restoration of all things.
Mal 4:5 Behold, I am sending you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of Jehovah. And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the sons, and the heart of the sons to their fathers, that I not come and strike the earth with utter destruction.
And yet today we all can see clearly that the curses of Lev 26 are indeed all around us in all the earth. John the Baptist is not alive now and we all know the Day of the Lord is at hand. The list of things that have been restored along with more and more people keeping the Torah is what is known as turning your hearts, the hearts of you the children of Yehovah back to the Father and as you obey His heart is turned back to you and to all of us.
It is only then when the authority of Chaos is destroyed that we can have true Shalom, true Unity. But until Yehovah, our Redeemer comes the world will lie in wait to kill us and prevent us from sharing with others.
Luke 11:53 And as He said these things to them, the scribes and Pharisees began to be terribly angry, and to draw Him out concerning many things, lying in ambush for Him, and seeking to catch something out of His mouth, so that they might accuse Him.
Matthew 24:7 For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines and pestilences and earthquakes in different places. All these are the beginning of sorrows. Then they will deliver you up to be afflicted and will kill you. And you will be hated of all nations for My name’s sake. And then many will be offended, and will betray one another, and will hate one another.
We are now reaching into Asia and I hope you will continue to support our efforts to unite all those Yehovah is calling at this time.
As issues of sexuality are addressed within the news headlines daily, the church can no longer afford to be silent. Sadly, many are aware of the moral decline among humanity, and they choose to look away.
Pornography, extra-marital affairs, and infidelity are now being considered acceptable, and are even encouraged by the world. If the church speaks up against these issues, they are being labeled as hypocrites. But one cannot afford to continue to have a passive response!
The Startling Truth of Passivity
As. Dr. Ted Roberts shares in the Conquer Series,
“There’s no way we can have revival in the church’s present condition. God would have to repent to give us revival. He’s not going to do that. He’s gonna ask the church to deal with this, or we will become irrelevant.”
As Facts and Trends reported in 2018, between 6,000 and 10,000 churches throughout the United States close their doors annually. This statistic shows two things:
On average, a minimum of 100 churches close their doors weekly.
Sadly, the church is becoming irrelevant in a time when the world needs the church the most.
Revitalizing the Church
One of the best ways to grow a church is to become relevant. That doesn’t mean adapting the truth of the Gospel, it means returning to it.
Men and women need to know that their secret struggles are not the end all. As individuals learn to view the church as a hospital instead of an experience, they will feel safe to seek out healing for their mind, body, soul, and spirit.
Think of a patient who requires heart surgery. The surgery is the main, life-saving event. The rehabilitation process afterwards is just as crucial to complete healing.
Coming to Christ is the surgery; it’s where we find forgiveness. But entering into a process of growing in the Lord is sanctification. This ongoing journey helps us to experience God’s love, while allowing our hearts and minds to be transformed. It’s the healing process that sets one free from the continuous taunting of a shattered past.
A huge problem in the church today is in regards to pornography and sexual addiction. Yet most pastors refuse to approach the subject. Studies through the years have found some very alarming statistics in regards to both men and women.
By the Numbers: Men
The Barna Group conducted surveys in both 2014 and 2016. Here is what they found:
63% of 18-30 year olds view pornography several times per week
77% of 31-49 year olds have looked at porn while at work in the past 3 months
35% had an extramarital affair
By the Numbers: Women
The same survey mentioned above shared that this is not just a man’s problem anymore.
76% of women aged 18-30 admitted to watching porn at least once per month
21% of women in that same age range view pornography several times per week
25% of married women watch porn at least once per month
In 2003, 34% of the women signed up to receive the Today’s Christian Woman’s online newsletter admitted that they purposefully seek out internet pornography.
Covenant Eyes and the Barna Group reported that only 13% of self-identified Christian women say they never watch porn.
What Can Be Done?
In their report, The Porn Phenomenon, the Barna Group reports that only 7% of churches have a program in place to help those struggling with pornography.
Fortunately, one small group study has taken the guesswork out of the best approach to tackle these tough topics.
Though created initially for men, the Conquer Series has become a leading study for both men and women. Jam-packed with Biblical principles, practical tools, scientific evidence, and testimonials, individuals will learn that they can become a conqueror through Christ.
As you watch each DVD, you’ll learn the science behind the brain and why trying harder does not work. You’ll work through exercises that will get to the root of your struggle, instead of solely focusing on the symptom. And most importantly, you’ll rediscover your God-given identity.
If a church wants to see their Conquer Group succeed, there are a few things that they must know.
It’s not enough for a member of the congregation to be passionate about the series. The senior pastor needs to be an active supporter of the program. Openly addressing sexual sin from the pulpit shows that the church is willing to take action.
Men and women should remain in separate groups. Conversations could go in any direction. At anytime, something may be triggered within an individual in the group. They need to be able to openly and honestly discuss their thoughts and what is grieving them.
Confidentiality must be emphasized and maintained. The focus is healing and recovery in Christ. These groups should not become a gossip session, and one should only talk about their own journey. In this atmosphere, people may disclose very personal things, such as abuse endured or the intensity of their struggle. This information should not leave the group. However, the leader(s) do need to make the attendees aware that they may be subject to their jurisdiction’s mandatory reporting laws.
It’s not enough to just watch the Conquer Series DVDs. If the men and women in your groups want to experience true life change, they need to fully commit. Study Guides and a Journal are available to help one get the most out of the study. Filled with helpful tools and powerful information, the use of these items can completely change the course of one’s life.
Be encouraged! In the beginning, you may not have the number of people sign up that you had hoped for. This doesn’t mean that the program will be a failure. Instead, it could just be symptomatic of the fear that holds people back. As people in your church begin to find freedom and share their experience, it will encourage others to step forward to attend. Don’t be afraid to make the Conquer Series an on-going ministry in the church.
The Time is Now
Someone struggling with sexual addiction is desperate to find freedom. A heartbroken spouse is praying for peace, and wonders if their marriage can ever be restored. Parents who just discovered their teen’s struggle are battling feelings of inadequacy as they seek to find a solution that will help their son or daughter. Will you come alongside them, take their hand, and agree to walk out this journey to freedom together?
It’s important to recognize that people are perishing by the thousands as a result of rampant and undealt with sexual sin. Make a choice to do something about it.