Why The Holy Days?

By Herbert W Armstrong

Last Great Day - 13 October 1979


I am speaking now to everybody from down in Florida, up into northern New York, from Seattle, Washington down to Pasadena, California and to at least four or five Feast sites in Canada. Greetings to all you brethren, all over the United States, the South, the North, the Middle West, the Atlantic and Pacific coasts. This is a wonderful thing. Now we are planning something even bigger for next year and perhaps a way to reach Feast Sites in other parts of the world by satellite.

The reports I’ve had, is that all of you have been having the best Feast ever this year. I’m sure we had the best year for many years last year. This has been even bigger and better this year. You’ve been literally, through sermons and through sermonettes, living through the coming thousand years of peace. The time with Jesus Christ here, ruling the whole world and all nations; and many of us, hopefully, ruling with Him on His throne. A time without any Satan, a time when the Earth will be as full of the knowledge of God as the ocean beds are full of water, and the Earth has almost none of the knowledge of God today. What a difference that will be!

But today, after the Feast of Tabernacles we have a different Holy Day. Actually, the Feast of Tabernacles ended at sundown last night. The Feast of Tabernacles is a seven-day festival. Yesterday was the seventh day of the festival, and today is another festival altogether. But as soon as the one ended at sunset last night, the other began. So here we still are. In many ways, we have traditionally regarded this as the Great Day of the Feast.

Now if we try to view the conditions in the world from the point in time of today, where we live today, it is good deal like going into or rather say, tuning in a movie on your television set. And you tune in when it is about three fourths of the way along. You do not know what has gone before. You do not know what has led up to the place where you are now. And you are bewildered because it does not make any sense to you. You do not know what they are talking about, unless you know what went before and what led up to it. So, what led up to our day today, to our kind of world today? Now the world is different than it was two thousand years ago in many, many, many ways. In some ways, it is still the same, unfortunately.

Now in John 7, verses 37 and 38, Jesus Christ stood up and said:

John 7:37 In the last day, that great day of the feast

Now, there might be some little problem of discerning, exactly, whether that meant the day that really followed the Feast of Tabernacles. Because they were still all there, just like we are today. Or whether that meant the last of the seven days, which would have been yesterday in our time of this Feast this year. Anyway,

John 7:37-38 Jesus stood up and cried saying If any man thirst let him come unto Me, and drink… and (38) out of his innermost being shall flow rivers of living water.

Unfortunately, I have a red-letter bible. The words of Christ are in red letters, and I can’t read them very well without a magnifying glass.

John 7:38-39 He that believeth on Me [said Jesus] as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. (39) (But this spake He of the Spirit, [that is, the Holy Spirit of God], which they that believe on Him should receive: for the Holy Spirit was not yet [that is, at that time 1900 years ago. “was not yet”…] given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified).

Holy Spirit shut up from mankind: (PLAY FROM 5:57)

Now there is a point that you should notice. The Holy Spirit had not been given to the church of the Old Testament. In the Old Testament, it is called the congregation of Israel, but congregation is just another English word for church; and in one passage in the New Testament, it’s called the “church in the wilderness” in the days of Moses (Acts 7:38). But, they did not have the Holy Spirit. And I may say more about that as we go along. The Holy Spirit had been shut up from mankind, until Christ was glorified. Now there is a lot more to it than that and I am coming to a lot more. So, just bear that in mind, if you will. The Holy Spirit was not yet, at that time, given. The Holy Spirit had come, up to that time, only for prophets. Now at that time, even the apostles had not yet received the Holy Spirit. In ancient Israel, only the prophets had the Holy Spirit of God.

Now another scripture I want to read right here in connection with this, just a page or two ahead of it. John 6:44, where Jesus said :

John 6:44No man can come to me, except the Father which sent me draw him.”

Now that is a MOST REMARKABLE statement! He said “No man CAN.” Even if he wants to, he is unable, unless God the Father draws him. I want you to notice one thing. The initiative must be taken by God. It isn’t up to the average man, the man in the street, the man wherever you find him, out on a farm or in the city to just say “Well, I want to come to God.” Now no man can come to God except through Jesus Christ. Jesus said, “I am the way, the light and the truth (John 14:6).” But Jesus says No man can come to Him, unless the Father takes the initiative and draws him, through the Holy Spirit. But, that doesn’t mean he had the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit will only be used as an instrument in drawing him towards Christ, and the choice has to be God’s.

Now, that leads us back to something. That’s why I say you cannot understand the conditions with the things that the Bible says of our time, if you don’t go back to know what went on way, way before.

Why could only those called come to Christ? Now that has a lot to do with predestination. Yes, there’s something about predestination in two different chapters in the New Testament. It has nothing to do with whether you are already predestined to be saved or lost, because we must all make our own decision. It has only to do with the time, with who is called and at what time, the time of being called. To understand, we need to see the panorama of events that led up to the time we are in now. If you’re tuning in on a motion picture, you’re tuning in on today. But we need to know what led up to today, what led up to this condition. Why do we have the conditions in the world we do now?

Now, God Almighty is the Creator. Jesus Christ said, I work and my Father works (John 5:17). They’re not lazy and They’re not laying around. They work. Well, what do They work at? What’s their job? CREATION. Of course, God is creator. God is also Revealer of knowledge and truth. He is also the Ruler of the universe. And, He also is the Giver of life. He has life within Himself and life to give.

Second stage of creation: (PLAY FROM 10:58)

Now God creates in a system, or a process, of duality. Two and two seem to go together in almost everything God does. For example the creation of man, it started in a physical creation. So there’s the physical creation and then a spiritual creation. Now the physical creation began about 6,000 years ago in the creation of Adam and Eve, human beings. But the spiritual creation began less than 2,000 years ago in Jesus Christ. That is the second stage of man’s ultimate creation. That is the stage that is going on now. And that has a lot to do with why we are here right now. And why you brethren in the other Feast sites, all around over the United States and up in Canada, are where you are right now.

When Adam was created, Satan was right there. He was here on the Earth. Now how did Satan come to be here? Where did he come from? God had created the super archangel whose name was Lucifer, long, long before Adam. Well how long before we don’t know, because the time is not given or revealed.

Back in Ezekiel 28:15, I want you to notice something about him. Speaking now of this Lucifer, God says

Ezekiel 28:15 Thou wast perfect in thy ways. [In his ways, in the way he acted and lived, the way he thought], ...perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created until iniquity was found in thee.

Now iniquity is lawlessness. Actually, before man was created God populated this Earth with angels. God set over them this great, super archangel Lucifer, the greatest, most powerful being that God ever did, ever can, create just automatically. Apparently, there are two other archangels of equal power today; but he was next to God in power and ability. He was perfect in his ways from the day God created him. God did not create an evil person. But iniquity was found in him. Now, what do you think is the ultimate thing that God is creating? The ultimate thing God is creating is perfect righteous character; and that’s something that even God Himself, alone by Himself, CANNOT create.

He created man that character can be built within us. But each of us has to make his own decision. And we have our part in it. And if we decide against it, there’s nothing God—God has so willed that there is nothing He, can do about it.

This Lucifer was instructed in all of the Government of God. He was sat on a throne over the angels, governing and ruling with the Government of God. The Government of God was sent here to carry on this process of developing character within those angels. Now Lucifer had been on the very throne of God. He had been instructed at headquarters of the universe. Just like we have instructed future ministers at Ambassador College; and then after their graduation at headquarters we send them, as we say, “out into the field.”

Well, this Lucifer was one that was instructed at headquarters in God’s heaven and then sent out into the field, this Earth. He had been instructed in the Government of God; and the Government of God is merely the government to lead into the right way of life.

A philosophy of life: (PLAY FROM 16:05)

Now then again, we get down to a philosophy of life. And as I have said to the leaders of many nations, to kings and emperors, prime ministers—there are two ways of life, or if you please, two philosophies. Only two general ways; and I have put it in language that a five or six-year old child ought to understand. The one way is the way of GIVE and the other is the way of GET.

Now the way of give is really the way of LOVE because love is not lust. Love means an out-going love, an out-going concern for the good and welfare of others. It is the way of wanting to serve and help and cooperate, wanting to share with others, of having in your mind and heart only the good of others. But getting is that “I want to get all for me. I don’t care about anybody else. I am looking out for number one. What do I care what happens to anybody else.”

Now, the Government of God is based on a LAW. You don’t know any government anywhere that is not based on a basic law or constitution of some kind. Right here in the city of Tucson, Arizona, where I am just now, we have a local city government; and it is based on ordinances and laws. The state of Arizona is based on certain state statutes and laws and a state government. And it is supposed to conform, in many ways, to the government of the United States, over all states. And the United States is founded on the Constitution of the United States. And we’re in the process right now of testing whether that constitution, the law of this land, can even stand; and whether Christ is going to be able to lead His church, or whether the politicians can. And as Mr. Radar has been explaining to you, if the state of California can win this battle against the Worldwide Church of God, then they will go after other churches. And if the state of California can do it, then other states will begin to do it, until all churches will be wiped out. They have been in Russia. Don’t SAY it could never happen here. It is just that serious, as Mr. Radar said. Let nobody be misled or misunderstand that point.

Now this world has really been ruled by Satan, and I am coming to explain that right now; and of course, the real instigator of it is Satan. But Satan has deceived the entire world, and many people are doing things of which Satan is the real instigator; but they’re unaware of that. They don’t realize that they were really led into that by an evil Satan.

Well, iniquity was found in this Lucifer. He led all of his angels into rebellion against the Government of God, and the Government of God no longer was administered on the Earth. That is, physical destruction came to the Earth as a result of that. In the 104th Psalm in verse 30, it speaks about God “renewing the face of the Earth” by sending forth His Holy Spirit. And so, you find the Earth in a state of chaos and destruction in the second verse of Genesis 1, the first chapter of Genesis. And the Spirit of God is there brooding over the watery surface. It was all oceans. There was no land at that time. And it was all dark because the sin of the angels brought darkness. And God is the God of Light and not of darkness. So, the first thing that God did, He said “Let there be light” and so light appeared. Then in six days, He RENEWED the face of the Earth for mankind. Angels had failed. You read in II Peter, second chapter and the fourth verse in the New Testament, of how the ANGELS SINNED and God has not spared them who sinned. And so we are told fear not, lest He will not spare us.

Lucifer had his name changed to Satan, and we know him as Satan today. He has deceived the whole world. Well, God first created man, and He created a woman from the man. Adam and Eve they were called. Just as God had instructed Lucifer at the headquarters of the universe, Lucifer was on the very THRONE of God before He sent him out. So God first, instructed Adam, and He talked with Adam the very first Sabbath day. God did not allow Satan to have any contact with Adam until God had thoroughly instructed Him about the Government of God, about the coming Kingdom of God, which is the family of God ruling with the Government of God (a different thing than the Government of God). And He had shown him that God’s way, God’s government, is based on LOVE—on the way of GIVE and not on the way of GET, just use my own phraseology for it.

Now Adam had an opportunity to qualify to replace the former Lucifer on the throne of the world and to administer the Government of God. Now God was determined to RESTORE the Government of God to this Earth when He intended to do it through man. Now the first man, Adam, was given a chance. But, just as Lucifer had rejected and rebelled, so now did the first man rebel.

The two trees: (PLAY FROM 23:59)

There were the two trees in the Garden of Eden. One was the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. That was taking to yourself the decision of what you think is right and what you think is wrong. The way of man that God says is never right and leads to death. Then there was the tree of life, which represented the Holy Spirit and the gift of eternal life, which God was willing to give Adam free. He did not have to repent. He had never done any sinning yet, at the time God spoke to him. But Adam had to qualify by rejecting Satan and Satan’s way, the get way; and by accepting God as his ruler, as the revealer of knowledge and truth, and as Savior. So, he had to also not only reject Satan and Satan’s way but obey God and accept God’s way. As I say, this was symbolized by the two trees.

Now Satan, when he was allowed to, Satan got through to Adam by way of his wife; and Satan’s gotten through to many men through their wives. Let that be a warning to you husbands and you wives. Eve finally tried the first scientific experiment in this world. I wonder if you realize the tools of science? Of modern science?

1. The rejection of revelation from God as the source of knowledge. They will not receive knowledge from God.

2. Observation and measurement,

3. Experiment,

4. Human reason.

So, Eve rejected what God had said—that she would surely die if she took of that tree. She looked at it and had observation and reason. It looked desirable, good for food. It was beautiful. She couldn’t see anything wrong with it, and she was not about to believe God when He said it was wrong. She was going to determine that for herself.

So, she used human reason, and then she decided to make an experiment. She TOOK of the tree to see what would happen. RESULT OF THAT FIRST SCIENTIFIC EXPERIMENT, SHE AND HER HUSBAND DIED and they’re not living today. That was the first scientific experiment.

Now then, let’s go back to Genesis the third chapter, at the very end of the third chapter.

Genesis 3:22 And the [Eternal] God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil.

That is, he took to himself the knowledge of good and evil, instead of letting God give it to him. God is the revealer of knowledge; and if you shut off revelation, you shut off the real source of knowledge.

Genesis 3:22-24 …And now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the Tree of Life [which he had not taken yet] …and live forever: [Because that represented the Holy Spirit, the Tree of Life; and lest he do that.] (23) Therefore the [Eternal] God sent him forth from the Garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken. (24) So He drove out the man; and He placed at the east of the Garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the Tree of Life.

God then shut mankind off from the Holy Spirit. And God, in effect, said to Adam, to put it in modern language, my own language, He said, “Adam, you have made the decision. You have had the chance to make a great decision, not only for yourself but for all that would be born from you, which would be the entire world of humanity. You have decided for yourself and all of them. Therefore, I sentence you and your progeny, mankind, to 6,000 years of being completely cut off from Me. All except the few that I shall specially and draw to Me for special service or activity, preparing for the Kingdom of God, when I will re-establish the Government of God on this Earth; and with the Kingdom of God.”

Re-establishing god’s government: (PLAY FROM 30:08)

The Government of God. You know, the only place on Earth today where the Government of God is being administered IS IN THIS CHURCH - The Worldwide Church of God. Now our present world headquarters are in Pasadena, California. At least they have been. And right now, I sort of moved them with myself over here to Tucson, Arizona, as I think most all of you know. And so, the largest state in the union has decided to attack and to try to do away with the Government of God. The men there don’t know that. They have been moved by Satan. But Satan is the great deceiver, and they do not know what led them. They are looking at it from a human political point of view. But the whole object is to destroy the Government of God. But fortunately, God previously moved me over here into Tucson, Arizona. Had He not done that, number one, when I had complete total heart failure (Let’s see. I guess that’s over two years ago now.), I probably would never have come back because I was utterly dead for a certain, small, short length of time. It might have been 30 seconds, it might have been a minute or half or more, because no one was clocking it at the time to be sure.

Anyway, my heart had completely stopped. There was no heartbeat. There was no blood pressure. There was no pulse. There was no breath. I was not breathing, and my fingernails turned to whatever they do turn to under those conditions. My face was, I think, all blanched and everything of the kind, but by mouth to mouth resuscitation, they brought me back. Secondly, if I had been in California on January 3rd of this year, I don’t know whether the state’s attack might have succeeded or not. Fortunately, I was here, and I was able to send letters to all of you brethren all over the United States. The first letter I had mailed from Pasadena, and the state’s agent stopped it at the post office from going out. They weren’t even going to let me communicatewith you. So, I sent another letter, and it wasn’t mailed in Pasadena. And the response was over-whelming.

And so now, you send the tithes and offerings to me personally here, but I am incorporated in the corporation-sole as custodian for the Church of God. So in a sense, that makes the headquarters here, doesn’t it now. But of course, our properties are still in California, and we are going to protect them. You can believe that. The state wants some eighty million dollars worth of beautiful property, the most beautiful campus in the United States or in the world; and they want to stamp the church. The cost to run it would be ridiculous. They wouldn’t know how. They would not know the first thing about it.

Man cut off: (PLAY FROM 34:27)

Now, God had cut man off. He said, “Go form your own governments.” He said, “Go form your own religions. You rejected Me as your God.” All right, look at all the different religions formed under the sway of Satan. God said, “You go form your own fund of knowledge, since you reject knowledge from Me.” So, man has done that. In man’s store of knowledge, he has built his institutions of learning; and our educational system is all what man has done UNDER THE SUPERVISION AND GUIDANCE OF SATAN THE DEVIL! And mankind doesn’t even know that. And I say to you today, that the most ignorant men we have in this world are the most highly educated. Because they have been educated in so many fables and so many non-truths that they’re going to have to unlearn those before they can ever begin to learn real truth. So, man has gone off to form his own institutions, his own governments, his own churches, his own knowledge, his own civilization. Now, for 6,000 years, man has been cut off from God in a way man does not realize.

Again, as Jesus Christ said “No man could come to Him unless the Father would draw him.” God must take the initiative. No man was able to do that. BUT MAN HAS NOT BEEN CUT OFF FROM SATAN. I want to emphasize that point. Now for 5,700 years, man had stumbled along, about the same old keel in this sense. So far as what human beings called “progress,” there has been very little progress in 5,700 years of man’s development on Earth. For example, in travel, men originally had to walk, go horseback or mule-back, or row boat or sail boat. That is why most cities were built on a harbor on the seashore, on the sea coast.

It is only in the recent years that man has begun to come out of it and make what humans call “progress”. Now I have to put quotes around that word “progress.” However, the modern progress, so-called, started with the invention of the printing press. Let’s see, what is that, about 400 years ago. But it took some time after the invention of the printing press before knowledge could be, man’s knowledge could be, disseminated and spread. First, they had to teach teachers before they had teachers to teach others. And so, the so-called progress was slow even at that for a long time, but it gained momentum as it went along. Now, most so-called progress has come in this century since I have been here.

Now this thing that man calls progress, it’s dual. Or, what God would call progress are two kinds. One is physical or material progress and the other is spiritual. Now, the physical progress that man has made, much of that is very good and some of it is very bad. Spiritual progress has been in reverse, going backward. Not progress at all, but backsliding. Physical progress… well, when I was born, before the beginning of this century, we had in the cities horse-drawn little dinky streetcars, with a team of horses pulling them. And the first kind of streetcar I can remember was when I was about 5 years old; and they had what we called the little dinkies, the first little tiny electric cars with a trolley on an electric line. No one ever thought of flying in the air until I was 11 years old—when I believe it was Orville Wright who made the first flight about as far as across this auditorium right here, and not out of the sight of anybody, when I was 11 years old. Telephone was still in its infancy. Communication and transportation were still elementary in every way.

In the United States, we were primarily an agricultural country at that time with the overwhelming majority of our population living on farms or in smaller towns. Today it is just the reverse. But, at that time, agriculture was not mechanized. In other words, they had horse-drawn plows. And my, how I have seen that, and farmers plowing out by the roadsides in the country in Iowa, singing at the top of their lungs as they worked all day. THEY WERE HAPPY THEN. Not any more.

I have seen developed

Now today, the number one question in the world is the question of human survival because now science and technology have developed the weapons of mass destruction that can erase all human life from off this Earth. And if God doesn’t intervene, it would be done. But God will intervene before that happens, and it won’t be done.

Now that’s the physical progress. Let’s look at the spiritual progress or retrogression. Anything like spiritual progress has been going backward in almost exactly the ratio that the physical progress has been going forward. As science and technology have developed and advanced, morals and spiritual progress have waned and gone backward just as rapidly. Did you ever think of that before?

When I was a boy, we didn’t have any such problems as divorce and remarriage. I never thought about divorce. There had never been a divorce in any of my family, none of my aunts, uncles or cousins or anybody that I knew in the family. Marriage was FOR LIFE! And when I married, it was for life; and it lasted 50 years, until my wife died. Now God has provided me with another wife, and that’s according to God’s own plan.

Now the very foundation of human civilization is the family unit. The family unit has been broken. Families are breaking up today. Divorce now is rampant. About every third marriage ends in divorce, and in some places even more than that. Morals have been on a toboggan slide. Crime and violence have just increased and been rampant. Wars were increasing with greater means of mass destruction, until now the next war, if it is a nuclear war, can erase all humanity from this Earth. And that is the number one problem on Earth today. In other words, what we have had is human DEGENERATION. Now measure that against the advancements of science and technology. All of the benefits of science and technology are no good with degeneration. There is no benefit to us whatsoever. And yet, science and technology have brought us the weapons that will finally destroy us—in cosmocide.

We have come to the place where only Jesus Christ can save this world alive. And of course, we know He is going to do it. And the first thousand years of His reigning on the Earth as the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords is what we have been celebrating here the last seven days, and what all of you brethren all over the United States have been celebrating in your various places.

God has been calling some: (PLAY FROM 45:40)

Now in the meantime, God has been calling some. And He has called only those that He was going to use in the development of the restoration of His government on Earth and the formation of the Kingdom of God, which IS THE BORN FAMILY OF GOD administering the Government of God. God called them to reveal the knowledge to them, to make them His government, and see if they would obey Him and His government. Now He gave them statutes and judgments to be the national laws of their government. He gave them His great overall Spiritual Law of love, which is defined down into the Ten Commandments. It is love towards God and love towards neighbor. Then in addition, He gave them a ritualistic law. Now that is a physical law, not a Spiritual Law. It was a law of physical rituals to do morning, noon and night, to teach them the habit of obedience because He did not give them the Holy Spirit. He gave them this physical ritual law as a substitute until the Holy Spirit came. But a substitute didn’t do the job, a physical law. And He also gave them a law of animal sacrifices because Christ had not yet come. Now the sacrifices could not forgive sin, animal sacrifices; but they were a reminder of sin.

Let’s see, I’ve lost my place here in my notes.

Now then, we come down to our time now. Christ came and preached the good news of the Kingdom of God, restoration of the Government of God on this Earth. That’s the most important thing to God right now, in a sense. Because that is the basis of developing character and for God’s ultimate overall purpose for the whole universe, which very few know or understand. And, I read to you how Christ said “Let him who is athirst come…” to Me and drink (Revelation 22:17) that the Holy Spirit would come to Them. But the Holy Spirit had not yet, at that time, been given yet. Because Christ had not yet been glorified. Now that’s why ancient Israel had animal sacrifices as a substitute, to remind them that Christ would come. Although, their animal sacrifices didn’t forgive their sins.

Now, God had called some. The Father did call some to Christ. Jesus said that no man could come to Him unless the Father drew them. And God did begin to draw some. Only 120 had been drawn for the whole three and a half years of Jesus Christ’s ministry. And, on the day of Pentecost, the Holy Spirit came and entered into that 120. But there were many others there from all the nations around the Earth. And Peter preached a sermon. They were convicted because they realized, especially those who had been in Judea at the time, that they were the ones who had killed the very Savior, Jesus Christ—or had caused it. They said, What shall we DO Peter said Repent and be baptized…and you SHALL receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” So about 3,000 were converted. (Acts 2:37-41). Now they were those that God had drawn. But the other people in other places outside had not been drawn and were not converted then.

There was one time that God wanted the apostle Paul to go to a certain place; for He said, I have many people there (Acts 18:9-10). In other words, God was going to draw many people there. Jesus said to Peter and others of the apostles, “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.” (Matthew 4:19) because they were fishermen, fishing in the Sea of Galilee. I have been all around it. I have not tried to walk on the water as Peter did yet, and I think I won’t do that right away. But Jesus {2}[51:24] said, “I will make you fishers of men.”

Now when you go fishing, you may let your fishing rod or the fish hook down in the water; and maybe you can stand there all day and never get a fish. At another time or another place, you will let it down; and you will get fish one after another, just as fast as you pull them out. Because they run in schools and you never know where the fish are, and you don’t know what fish you are going to get. You can’t pick out and say, “I want to get that one.” and think that one will take the hook, and you are going to pull him out. Well that’s the way it is with men. I know, when I was first converted, I wanted to see all my family and relatives converted. So, I tried to talk them into it. They just thought I was crazy. Have any of you had that experience? NO MAN CAN COME TO CHRIST UNLESS THE SPIRIT OF THE FATHER DRAWS HIM. And God the Father had not drawn those people. I could not help that. That was not my doing.

Now let me tell you something else, begin to explain something else a little farther. Over here in I Peter

I Peter 4:17 For the time has come that judgment must begin at the house of God.

In other words, WE ARE the house of God, brethren, just as the church that was first started and converted on that day of Pentecost in 31 AD. Judgment was on them. They were then being judged. We’re part of that same church today in our generation, and WE ARE BEING JUDGED.

Now here is the point I want you to get: no man can come to Christ. God has cut others off from Him. People think that it’s man that has cut God off. Oh no. God has cut man off. Now does that seem fair? A lot of people say, “That’s not fair then.” God did not give them any chance of conversion. That is true, He didn’t. He didn’t give them any chance of salvation. Well now, the human reason would say “Then God is not fair. Why does He give some a chance and others not?”

There is no partiality with God, brethren. Let me tell you that. The reason God has drawn some, I’ve said that He only draws those He is going to have a part in preparing for the Kingdom of God. He is not drawing them just to get them saved. EVERYONE is going to be drawn to salvation in the end. Well what about all these millions and billions that have lived and died, and have never been drawn, and they were CUT OFF FROM GOD; AND GOD CUT THEM OFF, AND THEY NEVER HAD A CHANCE? Oh, well God’s going to take care of that too. That’s what I am here to explain to you right now. That’s what THIS DAY is all about, and the world doesn’t understand it.

Now let’s go on from there. “Judgment” is on us. But we are only the FIRSTFRUITS. We are represented by the Day of Pentecost in our annual Holy Days, just the first harvest. But we who are called now have to overcome this world, ourselves, and Satan. Now let me tell you something. The others that God has not called, He just hasn’t called them YET. And when He does call them, they won’t have to overcome any Satan. They won’t have to. We’ve got a lot tougher time than they will have. On the other hand, we are going to be rewarded according to our works; and those of us that do overcome Satan are going to rule with Christ in His throne. Jesus had to QUALIFY to sit on that throne. He had to overcome Satan who had been sat on that throne when he was the archangel Lucifer. Jesus had to overcome Satan. He had to reject Satan’s way, and He did. If we’re to sit with Him on His throne, do you think we can get on there without qualifying also? Well, you better think again. If we’re going to rule with Christ, we have to overcome Satan same as He did.

Now, those that God has not called, He has not called YET. But when He does, there won’t be any Satan around; and they’ll have so much an easier time of it. There is no impartiality with God, absolutely not. But we can have a greater reward, although we have a tougher time getting to it.

Now, those that have been cut off from God, that could not come to Him unless God would draw them, have NOT YET BEEN JUDGED. Now their works have been recorded. Whatever they have done, they are still going to be judged for it; but they’re also going to be given a chance to repent and be forgiven for it, when their time of judgment comes. There are a number of judgments mentioned in the Bible. I don’t have time to go into all of those just now.

God’s master plan: (PLAY FROM 57:44)

I tell you that there is only one church on Earth today that understands God’s master plan. His master plan is unfolded and given to us through these seven annual Holy Days and the seven annual festivals. And this is the only church on Earth that observes them. God revealed that to me fifty-two and a half years ago, and at that time, my wife and I began observing these annual Holy Days. We didn’t yet understand all of the festivals. We didn’t understand “why.” We just knew God said to do it; and we found it was binding forever, and that it was also observed by Christ and by the church in the beginning, the New Testament church. Now I preached it to others that were supposed to be even the Church of God. They laughed me to scorn. They would not accept it. For seven years, my wife and I had to keep these Holy Days alone by ourselves. Then the beginning of this church was raised up in autumn 1933. They were my own converts. I taught them these annual Holy Days, and they began to keep them, starting with 19 members. And that is the way this church, now scattered all over the world, and that is when we started.

Now for seven years, we kept these annual Holy Days, or Sabbath Days; and we didn’t really understand why we were doing it. But all the brethren and the church started to grow, and the radio broadcast was going, the Plain Truth was being published, starting very small. Just growing gradually, little by little, and yet it was growing thirty per cent a year on the average. Then after seven years of that, now fourteen years from the time that we had begun, God revealed to me WHY we are to observe these days and festivals; and that they pictured God’s great master plan for the redemption of human kind. I saw that we should get out and keep the Feast of Tabernacles for seven days as a type of the Kingdom of God, to get away from the world as a whole. So then, I went out and found a fine little place in Belknap Springs up in Oregon.

Well, you know, even my own church members that had been my own converts, most of them would not observe anything more than just the Annual Sabbaths. They weren’t going to accept anything new they didn’t already have. But from then on all new converts DID, and that’s the way it is. Why is it so many will go just so far and they will not go any farther? They can’t receive any new knowledge. Well, look how many we have now keeping the Feast of Tabernacles. Almost 100,000 of you listening to me right now all over the United States and Canada. It’s a marvelous thing, and I don’t know of any other body on Earth that is doing it. But God revealed it to me; and it had to start with my wife and myself alone, AND WE DID IT. I’ve been keeping these days a lot longer than you have, as I’m sure you all know.

Now, as you know, the Passover is to picture to us the sacrifice of Christ, the Lamb of God slain for paying the price of our sins. The Feast of Unleavened Bread for seven days pictures our coming out of sin or putting of leaven out of our homes, the putting of sin out of our lives. The Feast of Firstfruits or Pentecost is to picture to us that we are only the FIRST FRUITS, that God is NOT TRYING TO SAVE THE WHOLE WORLD NOW. THIS IS NOT THE TIME THAT GOD IS TRYING TO SAVE THE WORLD. THIS IS THE TIME GOD HAS CUT THE WORLD OFF, AND THEY CAN’T BE SAVED. Now I say, does that mean injustice with God? NO. It is God’s responsibility and HE WILL SEE TO IT. And they’re going to have a better chance than we. It is just a case of deciding when the time comes.

The first of the fall festivals, beginning the first day of God’s sacred seventh month, the feast of Trumpets picturing the second coming of Christ. We’re looking forward to that now. That can’t come within one or two years because other things have to happen. But it could come within oh say five, six, seven years. It could. I don’t say it will. Then the Day of Atonement, the tenth day of the seventh month, primarily that pictures putting our sins that Christ has taken and paid the price for us. But Christ is not paying the price for Satan; and the REAL AUTHOR OF OUR SINS IS SATAN, and Satan is going to have to bear that himself. Christ is going to put it on him, and then he is going to be taken away.

Then we come to the Feast of Tabernacles, the sixth festival, which ended last night. That pictures the Millennium. The thousand years reign with Christ. Now then, you have been learning all through the last seven days that then all, who are left alive on Earth, will be ruled under Christ and under those of us that are converted. I am afraid that many who profess to be will find that the door is shut; and they can rap on the door, but Christ will say, “I never knew you”. You had better read the 25th chapter of Matthew beginning with verse one again, about the ten virgins.

You know some say that “I believe in being an individual Christian and just worshiping Christ on my own.” But Christ formed a church, and He formed a church with a job to do and a body. And if I had to leave that body, I wouldn’t give you a plug nickel for my chance of salvation. However, I haven’t time to explain all of that now. But all, who are still living when Christ comes, are then going to be called and drawn to Christ by Almighty God the Father. Now that’s when He begins to save the world. But Satan will be taken away. There won’t be any Satan around. The Kingdom of God will be ruling. Those of us who have been converted and who have the Holy Spirit and are being led by the Holy Spirit of God, if we have died between now and then, we will be resurrected. Not as human beings, but immortal; and we will rise to meet Christ in the air. We will then be AS GOD, composed of spirit (not flesh and blood any longer), immortal, not mortal.

Those of us who are living at that time—and I still say I could be, if God so wills—will then be changed in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, and rise with them in the air to meet Christ as He’s coming back to Earth. He is not coming to meet us as we take off for heaven. We’re going up to meet Him in the clouds as He’s coming back here, and He is going to be here. His feet are going to stand that very same day on the Mount of Olives. And where He is, we are going to be also with Him. Now a lot of churches get that mixed up.

What about the billions: (PLAY FROM 1:07:02)

Now then, what about the billions and billions of people that could not come to Christ, could not come to God? They were cut off from God, no chance of salvation at all—from the time of Adam, on. What about all of them? God’s responsible for them. That’s God’s responsibility, and there can be no unfairness with God. Some people would say, “Well, it doesn’t look like God is fair. He lets us be called now, and not a lot of others.” No, that’s poppycock. God is fair with everybody.

Let’s go to the 20th chapter of Revelation and beginning with verse 11. Now you find in the beginning how Satan is taken away, and then is the first resurrection, and the people reigning with Christ 1,000 years. We have been observing that and have had sermons about it for the last seven days, but now let’s begin with verse 11.

Revelation 20:11-12 And I saw a great white throne [Now this is after the thousand years is over and John in his vision saw a great white throne.], and Him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them. (12) And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead were judged out of those things that were written in the books, according to their works.

Now there was the book of life. That shows that many are going to be saved, and there will be no devil around at that time. The devil will appear just briefly after the thousand years, and then he’ll be put away again before this happens.

Now, ancient Israel had no salvation, except the prophets. I mean spiritual salvation. Let’s turn now, if you will, back to Ezekiel 37. {3} I will read the whole first 14 verses. This is about ancient Israel, who was not given the Holy Spirit of God.

Ezekiel 37:1-5 The hand of the LORD was upon me [that’s the prophet Ezekiel], and carried me (out) in the spirit of the LORD, and set me down in the midst of the valley which was full of bones, (2) And caused me to pass by them round about: and, behold, there were very many in the open valley; and, lo, they were very dry. (3 And He said unto me, Son of man, can these bones live? [Now, they are dead. They are skeletons. They are bones. Can a skeleton live?] And I answered, O Lord GOD, Thou knowest. [At least he knew God knew.] (4) Again He said unto me, Prophesy upon these bones, and say unto them, O ye dry bones, hear the word of the LORD. (5) Thus saith the Lord [Eternal] unto these bones; Behold, I will cause breath to enter into you, and you shall LIVE [these skeletons, these bones].

Now these bones are, I will show you later, the whole house of Israel. Now I heard a sermon preached on this by a very famous woman evangelist one time, and she said “These dry bones are all the other churches in the world, but we’re not the dry bones, we have got life in us.” Well, if she had just read it right here, it tells who the dry bones are.

Ezekiel 37:6 And I will lay sinews upon you [these bones], and I will bring flesh on you, and cover you with skin, and put breath in you [Now that breath is what we have to have for physical life. In immortal life, spirit life, we won’t need any breath. So, this is speaking of bringing people back to human life, just like they are now. It’s not speaking of an immortal, of a resurrection to immortality], and you shall live; and you shall know that I am the LORD [the Eternal].

Ezekiel 37: 7-11 And I prophesied as I was commanded: and as I prophesied, there was a noise, and behold a shaking, and the bones came together, bone to his bone. (8) And when I beheld, lo, the sinews and the flesh came up upon them, and the skin covered them above: but there was no breath in them. [So naturally, this is talking human life. They still didn’t have life in them]. (9)Then said He unto me, Prophesy unto the wind [or air],prophesy, son of man, and say unto the wind, Thus saith the Lord [Eternal]; Come from the four winds O breath, and breathe upon these slain, that they may live.’ (10) So I prophesied as He commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they lived, and stood up upon their feet, an exceeding great army. (11) Then He said unto me, Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel: [They are not the church of the lady preacher. These bones are the whole house of Israel. That is, the ancient Israel prior to the time of Christ.] Behold, they say, ‘Our bones are dried, and our hope is lost: we are cut off from our parts.

Because they never received the Holy Spirit and, they never received salvation and they did not understand that they could still receive it. Now here is a resurrection at the end of the thousand years.

Ezekiel 37: 12-13 Therefore prophesy and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord [Eternal]; Behold, O my people, I will open your graves [now this is Israel], and cause you to come up out of your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel. (13) And ye shall know that I am the [Eternal], when I have opened your graves, O my people…

You see they never did really understand it. They committed adultery. They were supposed to be married to Christ, well we know it was the one who became Christ, but to God; and they never really knew He was the LORD, or the Eternal.

Ezekiel 37:13-14 …and [I] brought you up out of your graves… (14) And shall put my spirit in you…

Now when He brings them up, get this point, first He puts breath in them and now they are going to come, after they have that breath, to KNOW God. Now, God is going to draw them to Him.

Ezekiel 37:14 And shall put my SPIRIT IN YOU [Now that is when they will receive the Holy Spirit], and you shall live, and I will place you in your own land: Then shall you know that I the [Eternal] have spoken it, and performed it, saith the [Eternal].

Isn’t that a wonderful teaching? Isn’t that wonderful, the ways of God? Not only Israel, but all nations are going to come into such a resurrection.

Let’s turn now to Matthew 12 beginning with verse 41. Jesus is speaking, and He said:

Matthew 12:41 The men of Nineveh shall rise up in judgment.

Now it’s speaking about a judgment, the great white throne judgment after the millennium.

Matthew 12:41-42 The men of Nineveh shall rise up, [that’s a resurrection from the dead], in judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: because they repented at the preaching of Jonas; and, behold, a greater than Jonas is here. [He was talking to the scribes and Pharisees, and He is much greater than Jonah, but they would not believe Him. He says now…] (42) The queen of the south shall rise up in the judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: [and that’s a gentile nation] for she came from the uttermost parts of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and, behold, a greater than Solomon is here.

So, they’re going to be in this judgment too, in the resurrection. Now then, another very important one is Luke 11:31-32; and again, it’s Jesus speaking.

Luke 11:31-32 The queen of the south shall rise up in judgment [speaking of the great white throne judgment, in the resurrection] …and condemn them: for she came from the utmost parts of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and, behold, a greater than Solomon is here. (32) The men of Nineveh shall rise up in judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: for they repented at the preaching of Jonas; and, behold, a greater than Jonas is here.

Now, wait a minute. Also, He spoke about it will be in this judgment. I guess I did not get that scripture down. But the men of Sodom and Gomorrah will fare better in that judgment than these that were rejecting the very Christ Himself when He was on Earth 1900 years ago. And it shows that there will be a resurrection of all of those that a God had cut off from Him.

Brethren, can you get this into your mind? We have always assumed that God is trying to save the whole world. All Protestants believe that, and I suppose all Catholics in their way. God has CUT THE WORLD OFF, except those that the Father calls. But there is this judgment coming; and they’re going to have it easier than we do, when their time comes. Let’s understand that. All shall have been called. It is only the church and the prophets that have to overcome Satan, and we shall rule with Christ. We have a chance at a greater reward, but we pay a bigger price to get it too. Let me tell you.

Now then, in closing finally, will you turn to

Romans 11:33-36 O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments… [These judgments of His that I have been telling you, judgment is on us now. It will be on those who are alive in the Millennium. It’ll be on everybody else that never had been judged before after that, in the Great White Throne Judgment]. (34) For who has known the mind of the Lord? Or who hath been His counselor? (35) Or who hath first given to Him, and it shall be recompensed unto Him again? (36) For of Him, and through Him, and to Him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen.

And with that, brethren, we come to the end of this eight day festival. It’s been here in Tucson, Arizona, the most wonderful festival that I know of. From reports of other feast sites, I think it has been there too. And, I hope that all of you listening have had the most wonderful festival ever. We are beginning greater plans for the festival next year immediately. There are some who will be working all year on it. So, we can come back to a still greater feast next year. And we are looking forward now to the great time in the millennium when there will be no Satan; and then after that, when all that have been cut off by God and from God will then be called and they won’t have any Satan to confront them. What a wonderful time that will be.

So now, carry this thought of the wonders of God as you go home. And I hope and pray that God will send angels along to see that you have no automobile accidents of any kind. Drive carefully. Keep your eye on the ball, and that’s right ahead on the road where you are going, on both sides at intersections. I hope you all get home safe and sound. I hope to see you next year, and I hope to see all of you. Now some of you have not had the picture this time. Most of you have. Next year we hope that we can have it so that you can all see the festival from here, just the same as most of you have this year.

So, with that, I’ll say goodbye to all of you from now until next year.


Transcribed by KK - edited by JF - May 27, 2005

{1} Editorial note: wrong placement in time sequence

{2} Editorial note: Mr. Armstrong meant Jesus. The original said: “Peter.”

{3} Editorial note: Mumbling deleted.

The original said: “Let’s see. Ezekiel 37. Oh, here I was and didn’t know it.”