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Click Here for the COGwriter Home Page which has articles on various sabbatarian Churches of God (COGs) and articles supporting beliefs of the Philadelphia portion of the Church of God.

04/04/07 a.m. I have previously reported that CG7-Denver does not believe that it needs to keep the biblical holy days. Although they do keep a version of Passover on the 14th of Nisan like those of us in most of the other COGs. The first reason that CG7-Denver now gives for non-observance is:

The annual holy days were part of the Levitical law of the old covenant and were intimately linked to its system of animal sacrifices.

But, that of course is true of Passover (of course they teach that they tie that to Christ in the New Testament--but they apparently overlook the fact that the same came be said of unleavened bread, Trumpets, and other biblical holy days). But what is bizarre is that the April 2007 edition of its Bible Advocate states:

Living Leviticus
This Old Testament book is more than garnish in the Word. by Kellie Schorr...

If the Bible is the Word of God for us to follow, then what do we do with Leviticus?...

I’ve heard many answers to that question — all unsatisfactory...

What should we do with Leviticus? Live its meaning day by day...

Leviticus is a book of religious tenets written to the first monotheistic culture. Its laws and rules were designed to keep the people who were carrying the truth of the one God alive and distinguish them from polytheistic cults that practiced human sacrifice and blood rituals. Kosher laws, with their requirements of cooking food and abstaining from blood and fat, are healthy and a great way to sustain a culture.

The laws about meat being cooked were novel at that time and, as we know now, certainly more hygienic. Other laws about clothing, rituals (such as hand-washing), and behavior distinguished the Israelites from other religious climates in a way that spoke volumes about who God is and what God wants. The message to the people of Israel was “Live in such a way that people can see God through you.” 

Modern message

Now that we see what Moses was telling Israel, what is God telling us? In this case, it’s the same message...

Leviticus is so much more than an old book; it is a new hope. Read it. Learn it. Live it in Christ — today.

The biblical holy days, which CG7-Denver essentially does not observe, are listed in Leviticus 23. And of course, even nominal Christians realized that they were not to eat unclean meats until at least the late second century. Several articles of related interest may be:

Church of God, Seventh Day: History and Teachings Nearly all COG's I am aware of trace their history through this group. Whaid Rose is its president. Do you know much about them?
The Sardis Church Era was predominant circa 1600 A.D. to circa 1933 A.D.
Is There "An Annual Worship Calendar" In the Bible? This paper provides a biblical and historical critique of several articles which state that this should be a local decision. Also you can click here for the calendar of Holy Days.
Passover and the Early Church Did the early Christians observe Passover? What did Jesus and Paul teach?
Melito's Homily on the Passover This is one of the earliest Christian writings about the Passover. This also includes what Apollinaris wrote on the Passover as well.
Should Christians Keep the Days of Unleavened Bread? Do they have any use or meaning now? This article supplies some biblical answers.

The New Testament Church and Unclean Meats Are foods considered to have been unclean in the Old Testament considered to be food in the New Testament? This article discusses this from the perspective of the New Testament. It also has a list of clean and unclean animals.

Speaking of holy days and sacrifices, the nation of Israel still keeps stopping some of the more devout Jews from following their faith as the following news item shows:

Court nixes Passover lamb sacrifice at Temple Mount

Haaretz - April 1, 2007

In their efforts to sacrifice a live animal at the Temple Mount, the New Sanhedrin Council adopted an almost underground modus operandi. Rabbis Adin Steinsaltz, Israel Ariel, Yishai Baved and their associates secretly located a butcher, found a Cohen hailing from a lineage 1,000 years old and worked out a plan to quickly erect an alter on the Temple Mount.

They tried to revive the customs of the ancient Sanhedrin tribunal, which was the highest judicial body for the Jewish people in Israel some 1,600 years ago. They sought to slaughter a sacrificial animal across from the Western Wall.

The activists, who belong to various religious circles such as the Temple Mount and Land of Israel Faithful Movement, also petitioned the High Court of Justice for the right to perform the ritual.

Their plans were thwarted yesterday when the court rejected their request, ruling that "the rights of the petitioners to practice their faith are outweighed by other considerations such as public order and safety." http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/844722.html

While certain Protestants believe that a physical temple must be built to fulfill Daniel 11:31, we in the COGs tend to believe that although sacrifices must start before they can be stopped (hence the above decision by the Israeli court will ultimately be irrelevant), we do not believe that a temple MUST also be built. Thus what almost occurred this week is consistent with what many of us believe will occur.

Yesterday, I received the latest letter from Leon Sexton of Legacy Institute, which stated:

Time is short and the harvest is plenteous. Laborers willing to put their hand to the plow are scarce...obey God's command to carry the Gospel to ALL the world!

Legacy is based in Thailand and is mainly a school to teach Asians which it hopes will become real ministers (as other parts of the same letter essentially state). UCG has its ABC program and LCG has its Living University to also do the same (though UCG and LCG are not just focused on Asia). Should the Church Still Try to Place its Top Priority on Proclaiming the Gospel or Did Herbert Armstrong Change that Priority for the Work?

04/03/07 a.m. Today marks the first day of unleavened bread. Nearly all of those in the COGs will be attending church services today, will abstain from eating normal leavened bread, and will actually eat unleavened bread. Here is some information about it:

The Bible shows that the Days of Unleavened Bread are connected to Passover (Lev 23:5-6; Ex 12:19-20; I Cor 5:7-8). While most professing Christians are aware that I Cor 5:7 teaches that "indeed Christ our Passover, was sacrificed for us", they do not seem to literally observe the verse that follows. "Therefore let us keep the feast, not with the old leaven, nor with the leaven of malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth" (I Cor 5:8). Actually, most professing Christians do not seem to be aware that they are supposed to keep any biblical feast. There are many reasons, though, to so do.

In Rom 3:25 it states, "in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed". Does this mean we are to continue is sin? Of course not! A few verses later Paul wrote, "On the contrary, we establish the law" (Rom 3:31). So while most understand that the Passover pictures a remembrance of Jesus Christ and his sacrifice (I Cor 11:24-26), many seem to not understand that we are not to continue in sin. Why? Maybe one of the reasons is that they do not observe the Days of Unleavened Bread.


In the world, leaven is all around. Not only is it in baked goods, it is now in many other products. Leaven spreads and most of the items it becomes part of crumble. In the Bible, leaven normally pictures malice, wickedness, and hypocrisy (I Cor 5:8; Mat 16:6,12; Luke 12:1), while unleavened bread pictures sincerity and truth (I Cor 5:8). The Old Testament states, "no leaven shall be seen among you" (Deut 16:3), whereas the New Testament states, "His Son cleanses us from all sin" (I John 1:7) and that "sin is lawlessness" (I John 3:4).

Leaven pictures the teachings of the Pharisees (Mat 16:6,12; Luke 12:1) whom Jesus called hypocrites (Mat 23:23,25,27,29). According to Strong's, the Greek word Jesus used that was translated as hypocrite means, "an actor under an assumed role". The Pharisees were false religious leaders who pretended to keep God's law, but really did not (Mat 15:3-9).

Jesus further described the Pharisees by saying, "you also outwardly appear righteous to men, but inside you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness" (Mat 23:28). Jesus thus tied leaven (the Pharisees teachings, Mat 16:12) to false religion (being hypocrites) and sin (since "sin is lawlessness", I John 3:4).

In Exodus it states that the Days of Unleavened Bread, "shall be a sign to you on your hand and as a memorial between your eyes, that the LORD's law may be in your mouth" (13:9). Keeping seven days of unleavened bread pictures that we are to live in sincerity and truth by keeping God's law--that we are not continue in false religion, not to continue in sin.

Why seven days? In the Bible God seems to use the number seven to show completeness. There are seven days in a week (Ex 20:6), seven days of creation (Gen 1), seven Churches in Rev 2&3, seven candlesticks (Rev 1:20), seven days of the Feast of Tabernacles (Lev 23:34), etc. The seven Days of Unleavened Bread seem to picture that after our sins have been forgiven through the sacrifice of Jesus (Rom 3:25, I Cor 5:7)), that we are to no longer continue in the old ways but to walk in the true ways of the Bible (I Cor 5:8).

The Days of Unleavened Bread help us to understand that sin is to put out of our lives; throughout the year it reminds us that false religion is all around and needs to be avoided. People who do not keep the Days of Unleavened Bread are not reminded about false religion and sin through this symbol during the year; maybe they do not want to be.

For more information, please read the article Should Christians Keep the Days of Unleavened Bread?

On other matters, a summary statement of CGG's latest posted sermon by its John W. Ritenbaugh correctly states:

Scripture Shows Jesus Christ Was Not Created

While the above is true, many today are confused about the Godhead. Below are several articles of possible interest:

Binitarian View: One God, Two Beings Before the Beginning Is binitarianism the correct position? What about unitarianism or trinitarianism?
Is The Father God? What is the view of the Bible? What was the view of the early church?
Jesus is God, But Was Made Man Was Jesus fully human and fully God or what?
Virgin Birth: Does the Bible Teach It? What does the Bible teach? What is claimed in The Da Vinci Code?
Did Early Christians Think the Holy Spirit Was A Separate Person in a Trinity? Or did they have a different view?
Did the True Church Ever Teach a Trinity? Most act like this is so, but is it?
Was Unitarianism the Teaching of the Bible or Early Church? Many, including Jehovah's Witnesses, claim it was, but was it?
Binitarianism: One God, Two Beings Before the Beginning This is a shorter article than the Binitarian View article, but has a little more information on binitarianism.

04/02/07 a.m. A long-time reader of this page sent an email that stated:

Regarding Vance & Barbra Woodbury, who were killed by the Tornadoes...a UCG minister provided the following
(they lived in Elmwood, Oklahoma but attended church across the state line in Kansas):

Vance and Barbra attended the United Church of God in Liberal, Kansas.  The funeral will be on Monday.

There was an earthquake that resulted in a tsunami in the Solomon Islands:

Tsunami death toll rises

Sydney Morning Herald - April 2, 2007

Villages have been destroyed and homes, ripped from the land, are floating out to sea after a major earthquake and tsunami hit the Solomon Islands today.

The country's Prime Minister's office reports that at least six people have been killed and several are missing as "10-metre-high waves continue to crash [on] coastal villages". http://www.smh.com.au/news/world/tsunami-death-toll-rises/2007/04/02/1175366131081.html

Whole villages 'wiped out' in Solomons tsunami: official

AFP - April 1, 2007

Several villages in the Solomon Islands were completely destroyed by a tsunami in the west of the South Pacific nation on Monday, the chairman of the National Disaster Council said.  "Some villages are completely wiped out," Fred Fakari told journalists in the capital Honiara.                                http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=070402021722.xsa9iq5f&show_article=1

A booklet of possible interest may be Who Controls The Weather?

Two Jehovah's Wintesses came to my door yesterday. What was unusual about this is that they normally do not come on a Sunday. Anyway, since I knew they claimed to observe Passover, I asked them when, and they said they would observe it Monday evening. When I mentioned to them that even their New World Translation of the Bible shows that the Gospels record that Jesus kept the Passover the evening BEFORE the Jews did, they did not know what to say and left. Like the JWs, many are confused about the Passover date. TPM's W. Dankenbring and others will observe it tonight, again not following the practices of Jesus or the early Church.

An article of possible interest this time of year should be What Happened in the Crucifixion Week?

04/01/07 a.m. Tonight after sunset is the 14th day of Nisan/Abib. Those who followed the example of the apostles and the Gospel observed Passover on the fourteenth even though various Roman leaders opposed that practice.

Here is what Polycrates wrote to Roman Bishop Victor when Victor insisted that Passover become Easter Sunday:

We observe the exact day; neither adding, nor taking away. For in Asia also great lights have fallen asleep, which shall rise again on the day of the Lord's coming, when he shall come with glory from heaven, and shall seek out all the saints. Among these are Philip, one of the twelve apostles, who fell asleep in Hierapolis; and his two aged virgin daughters, and another daughter, who lived in the Holy Spirit and now rests at Ephesus; and, moreover, John, who was both a witness and a teacher, who reclined upon the bosom of the Lord, and, being a priest, wore the sacerdotal plate. He fell asleep at Ephesus. And Polycarp in Smyrna, who was a bishop and martyr; and Thraseas, bishop and martyr from Eumenia, who fell asleep in Smyrna. Why need I mention the bishop and martyr Sagaris who fell asleep in Laodicea, or the blessed Papirius, or Melito, the Eunuch who lived altogether in the Holy Spirit, and who lies in Sardis, awaiting the episcopate from heaven, when he shall rise from the dead ? All these observed the fourteenth day of the passover according to the Gospel, deviating in no respect, but following the rule of faith. And I also, Polycrates, the least of you all, do according to the tradition of my relatives, some of whom I have closely followed. For seven of my relatives were bishops; and I am the eighth. And my relatives always observed the day when the people put away the leaven. I, therefore, brethren, who have lived sixty-five years in the Lord, and have met with the brethren throughout the world, and have gone through every Holy Scripture, am not affrighted by terrifying words. For those greater than I have said ' We ought to obey God rather than man'...I could mention the bishops who were present, whom I summoned at your desire; whose names, should I write them, would constitute a great multitude. And they, beholding my littleness, gave their consent to the letter, knowing that I did not bear my gray hairs in vain, but had always governed my life by the Lord Jesus (Eusebius. Church History. Book V, Chapter 24).

Note that Polycrates:

1) Claimed to be a follower of the teachings passed on from the Apostle John
2) Claimed that he was being faithful to the teachings of the Gospel
3) Relied on the position that teachings from the Bible were above those of Roman-accepted tradition
4) Claimed that he was being faithful to the teachings passed down to him
5) Was then the spokesperson for many in Asia Minor
6) Claimed he and his predecessors observed the time of unleavened bread
7) Refused to accept the authority of Roman tradition over the Bible
8) Refused to accept the authority of the Bishop of Rome
9) Claimed that his life was to be governed by Jesus and not opinions of men

So what happened next?

Eusebius immediately continues with,

Thereupon Victor, who presided over the church at Rome, immediately attempted to cut off from the common unity the parishes of all Asia, with the churches that agreed with them, as heterodox; and he wrote letters and declared all the brethren there wholly excommunicate (Ibid).

This, however, did not set well with other leaders as they were aware that this subject had come up before and that Polycrates' testimony was true.

So, Eusebius then wrote,

But this did not please all the bishops. And they besought him to consider the things of peace, and of neighborly unity and love. Words of theirs are extant, sharply rebuking Victor (Ibid).

Eusebius also quoted Irenaeus. Irenaeus apparently wrote Victor in order to change his mind on this disfellowship. One of the things that Irenaeus did was to remind him what happened earlier on the issue of the date of Passover,

And when the blessed Polycarp was at Rome in the time of Anicetus, and they disagreed a little about certain other things, they immediately made peace with one another, not caring to quarrel over this matter. For neither could Anicetus persuade Polycarp not to observe what he had always observed with John the disciple of our Lord, and the other apostles with whom he had associated; neither could Polycarp persuade Anicetus to observe it as he said that he ought to follow the customs of the presbyters that had preceded him. But though matters were in this shape, they communed together, and Anicetus conceded the administration of the eucharist in the church to Polycarp, manifestly as a mark of respect (Ibid).

Anicetus was the Bishop of Rome when Polycarp visited Rome. Note that Irenaeus only claims that Anicetus was following tradition and not the teachings of the Bible or the Apostles for making the change of Passover. The change that Anicetus had accepted was that Passover would not be observed on Nisan 14, but on Sunday. And that this practice began with the Roman Bishops may have began with Telesphorus after 132 A.D. (see article on the Passover and the Early Church).

It is important to realize that Polycarp was recognized a leader, that he kept the what he was taught, and that he refused to accept Roman tradition to change the date of Passover. It is important to realize, that even though they refused to accept Roman tradition on the date of Passover, Catholics, Orthodox, and others still consider that Polycarp, Thraseas, Sagaris, and Melito were all faithful saints. Please note that Polycrates simply faithfully followed them as they claimed to follow scripture.

On other matters, March 2007 saw nearly three times as many hits to the COGwriter site as compared to March of 2006. The most popular articles for March 2007 were:

  1. Concerns About Ronald Weinland's Church of God-Preparing for the Kingdom of God Ronald Weinland claims to be one of the two witnesses. He has at least one other view that suggests that he is not part of the COG.
  2. History of Early Christianity Are you aware that what most people believe is not what truly happened to the true Christian church?
  3. Why Not the Restored Church of God? This group, led by David Pack, claims to be the most faithful. The information in this article suggests otherwise.
  4. Some Similarities and Differences Between the Orthodox Church and the Churches of God Both groups have some amazing similarities and some major differences. Do you know what they are?
  5. LCG 2007 Feast of Tabernacles' Information This is a listing of LCG's officially announced FOT sites thus far. LCG tends to have over 40 FOT sites around the world.
  6. Polycarp of Smyrna Polycarp was the successor of the Apostle John and a major leader in Asia Minor. Do you know much about what he taught?
  7. Church of God, Seventh Day: History and Teachings Nearly all COG's I am aware of trace their history through this group. Whaid Rose is is the president of the General Conference in Denver. Do you know much about them?
  8. There are Many COGs: Why Support the Living Church of God? This is an article for those who wish to easily sort out the different COGs. It really should be a MUST READ for current and former WCG members or any interested in supporting the faithful church.
  9. Differences between the Living Church of God and United Church of God This article provides quotes information from the two largest groups which had their origins in WCG as well as commentary.
  10. Teachings Unique to the Philadelphia Church of God Simply calling oneself 'Philadelphia' does not make one so (see Revelation 3:7-9), nor does Gerald Flurry calling himself "that prophet" make it so. This article provides quotes from this group which claims to be faithful.
  11. Sola Scriptura or Prima Luther? What Did Martin Luther Really Believe About the Bible? Though he is known for his public sola Scriptura teaching, Martin Luther's writings about the Bible suggest he felt that prima Luther was his ultimate authority.
  12. Passover and the Early Church Did the early Christians observe Passover? What did Jesus and Paul teach?
  13. What Do Roman Catholic Scholars Actually Teach About Early Church History? Although most believe that the Roman Catholic Church history teaches an unbroken line of succession of bishops beginning with Peter, with stories about most of them, Roman Catholic scholars know the truth of this matter. This eye-opening article is a must-read for any who really wants to know what Roman Catholic history actually admits about the early church.
  14. Binitarian View: One God, Two Beings Before the Beginning Is binitarianism the correct position? What about unitarianism or trinitarianism?
  15. SDA/COG Differences: Two Horned Beast of Revelation and 666 The COG is NOT part of the Seventh-day Adventists. This article explains two prophetic differences, the trinity, and differences in approaching doctrine.

Several of the above articles were updated during March (and I actually modified the title of the first one yesterday).

Barnabas Ministries had this Q& A at its website:

Q. Does the Bible teach that we are to eat unleavened bread for seven (7) days during the 'days of unleavened bread' (Biblical holy days that occur in the Spring) and NOT eat bread that is leavened?

(Submitted by: Helen)

A. God does not change. The holy days were given to help us and our children understand God's Plan for mankind. We know that unleavened bread represents Christ's body and that is why God said to eat unleavened bread for seven days. He didn't what us to have the leavened bread of the world in our lives; He wanted us to have the unleavened bread of Jesus Christ. The Days of Unleavened Bread represents putting sin (leaven) out of our life and replacing that with Jesus Christ our savior.

The following is LCG's position:

Leviticus 23:6 states, "seven days you must eat unleavened bread." Among other things, the unleavened bread symbolizes Jesus Christ. In John 6:33-35 we are instructed to feed on Christ, which we should do every day, including the seven days of Unleavened Bread, not just when we decide to eat the bread. Our focus should be on becoming more like Christ. Eating unleavened bread every day and focusing on the meaning of that unleavened bread is what is really important. Therefore, during the Days of Unleavened Bread all members of the Church are instructed by Scripture to eat at least one piece of unleavened bread per day. (The World Ahead (Weekly Update) 3/11/04).

These two positions, however, differ from UCG's position on the matter. Notice what UCG's Eating Unleavened Bread Study Paper states:

We conclude that we are commanded to avoid leavened bread (and, by extension, all leavened products) during the seven Days of Unleavened Bread. It is not required that we eat some unleavened bread each and every day of the seven, but to abstain from all bread for seven days would weaken the lessons of the Days of Unleavened Bread.

Two articles of possible interest may be:

UCG and Its Unleavened Bread Study Paper What does the Bible say about eating unleavened bread for seven days? What has UCG officially said about it?
Differences between the Living Church of God and United Church of God This article provides quotes information from the two largest groups which had their origins in WCG as well as commentary.

03/31/07 a.m. Last night, ICG's Mark Armstrong reported:

I’m sure by now you all know of Iran’s latest provocation, having taken and detained 15 British troops.  It shows once again how lonely the U.S. and UK are in the war against radical Islam’s push toward world domination.  Aside from a mild memo meant to represent the European Union, there has been no outcry from our former allies.  Saudi Arabia took the occasion to condemn the “illegal occupation” of Iraq.  It is obvious that Iran is taking advantage of perceived weakness in the west, and the non-stop campaign by the mainstream media, entertainment and educational communities to demonize the war against militant Islam.  Although there are some signs of progress in Iraq, there are strong political elements in our country that are heavily invested in seeing the Bush administration dealt a humiliating defeat.  It does not bode well for the future of our beloved country. 

          You are also probably aware that the U.S. has amassed a strong naval presence in the Persian Gulf and that military conflict with Iran, primarily over their development of nuclear capabilities, remains a lingering possibility. 

I have suspected for quite some time that Iran would do something that would results in the West possibly attacking it or at least weakening it. I state this because I believe that PCG is wrong about Iran being the king of the South--thus I feel that Iran will somehow be weakened enough that it will not be the major Islamic leader in the end.

The following news item was of interest:

First Temple wall found in City of David

Jerusalem Post - March 30, 2007

A wall from the First Temple was recently uncovered in Jerusalem's City of David, strengthening the claim that it is the site of the palace of King David, an Israeli archeologist said Thursday.

The new find, made by Dr. Eilat Mazar, a senior fellow at the Shalem Center's Institute for the Archeology of the Jewish People, comes less than two years after she said she had discovered the palace's location at the site just outside the walls of the Old City...

Mazar estimates less than a quarter of the entire wall has been uncovered so far, and says that it is the largest site from King David's time ever to have been discovered.

The dig is sponsored by the capital's Shalem Center, with academic backing from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.


While evangelically-oriented Protestants tend to believe that a new temple must be built before Christ returns (and probably at or near the site of the original temple), most COG-groups believe that a physical temple is not essential as the Bible (Daniel 11:31) simply mentions that the daily sacrifices will stop (and only an alter is needed for that). Roman Catholics have a different view (they view the stopping of their "Mass" by the Antichrist is how Daniel 11:31 and/or 12:11 will be fulfilled.

Tomorrow night is the biblical Passover!

Do you know that it has long been known that those who follow the example of the Apostle John will observe it then, yet those who accept the traditions of the Roman Church switched the date, the meaning, and the symbols associated with it? Notice the following:

The third century saw the rise of the Roman Church and its allies. During this time, the true Church became harder to locate. However, even some who later became associated with the Roman Church still resisted observing a Sunday Passover.

After explaining that figuring out what day was Passover was easy for those that kept the biblical date but hard for those that practiced the Roman Sunday practice, Anatolius of Laodicea wrote circa 270 A.D.:

Following their example up to the present time all the bishops of Asia—as themselves also receiving the rule from an unimpeachable authority, to wit, the evangelist John, who leant on the Lord’s breast, and drank in instructions spiritual without doubt—were in the way of celebrating the Paschal feast, without question, every year, whenever the fourteenth day of the moon had come, and the lamb was sacrificed by the Jews after the equinox was past; not acquiescing, so far as regards this matter, with the authority of some, namely, the successors of Peter and Paul, who have taught all the churches in which they sowed the spiritual seeds of the Gospel, that the solemn festival of the resurrection of the Lord can be celebrated only on the Lord’s day. Whence, also, a certain contention broke out between the successors of these, namely, Victor, at that time bishop of the city of Rome, and Polycrates, who then appeared to hold the primacy among the bishops of Asia...

The one party, indeed, kept the Paschal day on the fourteenth day of the first month, according to the Gospel, as they thought, adding nothing of an extraneous kind, but keeping through all things the rule of faith. And the other party, passing the day of the Lord’s Passion as one replete with sadness and grief, hold that it should not be lawful to celebrate the Lord’s mystery of the Passover at any other time but on the Lord’s day (ANF06, The Paschal Canon of Anatolius of Alexandria. X. THE ANTE-NICENE FATHERS translations of The Writings of the Fathers down to a.d. 325. Alexander Roberts, D.D., and James Donaldson, LL.D., EDITORS. AMERICAN REPRINT OF THE EDINBURGH EDITION. Revised and chronologically arranged, with brief prefaces and occasional notes by A. Cleveland Coxe, D.D. T&T CLARK, Edinburgh. Wm. B. Eerdmans publishing company, Grand Rapids, Michigan. VOLUME VI--Schaff P. Nineteenth Century).

Notice that it was those that claimed succession from Peter and Paul (though I should add that even Roman Catholic scholars admit that there was no direct connection) that insisted on Sunday, while those that did descend from the Apostle John kept the biblical date. Also notice that they do not have clear scriptural authority for the change.

Several articles of related interest may include:

Is There "An Annual Worship Calendar" In the Bible? This paper provides a biblical and historical critique of several articles which state that this should be a local decision. Also you can click here for the calendar of Holy Days.
Passover and the Early Church Did the early Christians observe Passover? What did Jesus and Paul teach?
Melito's Homily on the Passover This is one of the earliest Christian writings about the Passover. This also includes what Apollinaris wrote on the Passover as well.
Should Christians Keep the Days of Unleavened Bread? Do they have any use or meaning now? This article supplies some biblical answers.

What Happened in the Crucifixion Week? How long are three days and three nights? Did Jesus die on "Good Friday"? Was the resurrection on Sunday? Do you really know?
Did Early Christians Celebrate Easter? If not, when did this happen? What do scholars and the Bible reveal?
What Does the Catholic Church Teach About Christmas and the Holy Days? Do you know what the Catholic Church says were the original Christian holy days? Was Christmas among them?

03/30/07 a.m. CGG linked to the following at its website:


(Own Report) - In spite of days of controversy, today's signing of the "Berlin Declaration" went ahead without amendment. The pivot and crux of the controversy is the announcement of an intended replacement for the failed EU constitution which will have the same content under a different title and is to be ratified as quickly as possible. This arrangement has occasioned great displeasure in several European capitals. The most influential German think tank, the Bertelsmann Foundation, maintains that European unification must be driven forward; the greatly contested EU constitution is to be merely the "point of departure". For the first time, the foundation recently presented a draft paper to top politicians from twenty European countries and the USA over the "strategic reorientation" of the EU in which it recommended, as a first step, that the national armed forces of all member states should be combined into a single EU army. The German Chancellor has taken up this suggestion. Frau Merkel warned against refusing so-called integration. She said "The ideal of European unification is today again a matter of war and peace"...

EU Armed Forces

According to the report, further development of the EU "is only possible on the basis of an altered treaty".[5] The EU constitution proposed in Berlin today is "simply the point of departure to enable the achievement of totally new goals". "Europe wishes to be acknowledged alongside the United States of America as the voice of the West," it states in a "memorandum" upon which the debate was based. "For this, considerably greater efforts are necessary on the world stage, from world trade through global environment up to civil and military crisis management".[6] As the next step, the members of the "Strategy Group" took into their consideration the merging of European national forces into a unified EU army. http://german-foreign-policy.com/en/fulltext/56058?PHPSESSID=qt7kju4jhp147agjtmoinhd5l7

As the above indicates, the EU will move forward and have a single unified army, irrespective of the will of the voters who told it no before. In the long run, it is clear that Europe will unite and be a major factor. An article of possible interest may be Europa, the Beast, and the Book of Revelation.

Speaking of information at websites, Ronald Weinland's CGPFK has the following about itself at its website:

The organization of the Church of God-PKG was established to serve those scattered brethren of the Church of God who desired to hold fast to those truths restored to the Philadelphian era and revealed through God's end-time apostle, Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong.

Ron Weinland has long rejected Philadelphia era governance, made a variety of prophetic changes, and now even rejects the deity of Christ--he is not faithful to the truths restored to the Philadelphia era. Three articles of related interest may be:

Brief Article on Church of God-Preparing for the Kingdom of God This is Ronald Weinland's group. He claims to be one of the two witnesses.
Did You Know What the First Changes the Tkach Administration Made? Some have said healing, others other subjects, but probably the first change had to do with eliminating being part of the Philadelphia era. This article documents what those changes were and compares the Tkach list of restored truths to HWA's list of restored truths. It contains many quotes from HWA.
There are Many COGs: Why Support the Living Church of God? This is an article for those who wish to easily sort out the different COGs. It really should be a MUST READ for current and former WCG members or any interested in supporting the faithful church.

03/29/07 p.m. Dixon Cartwright, editor of The Journal, sent a link to the following article:

Twister Kills 2 Oklahomans

AP - 3/28/2007 10:37 PM - Updated 3/29/2007 11:10 AM

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- Authorities tried to warn a couple of an approaching tornado minutes before the killer twister blew apart their farm house in the Oklahoma Panhandle.

Vance and Barbra Woodbury did not answer a telephone call from the sheriff's office Wednesday evening, said Dixie Parker, the Beaver County emergency management director.

Sheriff's deputies who rushed to the home after the tornado struck found that the husband and wife had been blown about 75 feet from the obliterated structure. She was dead and he died shortly afterward.

And Dixon wrote:


Above is an article about the death of two Church of God members, Vance and Barbra Woodbury. She was Barbra Davisson, in my incoming class at AC in 1966. Vance was a college employee, on the farm, I think. Vance was son of Ledru Woodbury, a Worldwide Church of God member from way back who lives in Colorado. Linda called Joe Kirkpatrick about the Woodburys this morning. Joe (who lives in New Mexico) said he had called the sheriff's department in Beaver County, Okla. A sheriff or sheriff's deputy went out to Vance's and Barbra's house and warned them to get out of the house because a tornado was coming. They said, no, we'll just stay here in the house. The above link also has a dramatic storm-chaser movie clip of the tornado.--Dixon

03/29/07 a.m. The Church of God, Seventh Day (Denver) teaches against the observance of the biblical holy days, even though it has historically observed Passover on the 14th of Nisan. Notice what its website states:

Do you celebrate the feast days? If not, why not?
The Church of God (Seventh Day) teaches that Christians are not obligated to observe the feast days, the annual Hebrew holy days of Leviticus 23. Here are seven reasons for this position:

(Note for some reason its website does not have dot on the second listed "reason") Let's address each of the above "reasons".

First, when confronted by the Sadducees, notice what Jesus did:

Jesus replied, "You are in error because you do not know the Scriptures or the power of God..." (Matthew 22:29, NIV).

Whoever wrote CG7's answer above does not understand Genesis chapter one:

Then God said, "Let there be lights in the firmament of the heavens to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs and seasons, and for days and years (Genesis 1:14, NKJV).

The Hebrew term translated as "seasons" in the above is mowed`. Notice the following:

mowed` (mo-ade'); or moed` (mo-ade'); or (feminine) mow` adah (2 Chron 8:13) (mo-aw-daw'); from OT:3259; properly, an appointment, i.e. a fixed time or season; specifically, a festival; conventionally a year; by implication, an assembly (as convened for a definite purpose); technically the congregation; by extension, the place of meeting; also a signal (as appointed beforehand):

KJV - appointed (sign, time), (place of, solemn) assembly, congregation, (set, solemn) feast, (appointed, due) season, solemn (-ity), synogogue, (set) time (appointed). [Biblesoft's New Exhaustive Strong's Numbers and Concordance with Expanded Greek-Hebrew Dictionary. Copyright (c) 1994, Biblesoft and International Bible Translators, Inc.]

The Bible is clearly endorsing the concept of seasonal and biblical festivals from the creation! Furthermore, notice:

For indeed Christ, our Passover, was sacrificed for us. Therefore let us keep the feast (1 Corinthians 5:7-8).

...the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world (Revelation 13:8).

Notice that Jesus was the Passover Lamb, slain from the foundation of the world. God's Holy Day plan was thus not just for Israel, but intended for all humankind from the beginning of creation!

CG7's reason two: The New Testament Passover (sometimes called "the Lord's Supper") is also ceremonial, yet CG7 and WCG to some degree claim to keep that. Thus, this is a red-herring argument.

CG7's reason three: The biblical holy days were clearly observed in places other than Jerusalem.

John, Polycarp, Melito, Polycrates, and other early Christians all kept them in various cities in Asia Minor. Also, notice that the Bible specifically states:

And you shall eat before the LORD your God, in the place where He chooses to make His name abide... (Deut 14:23).

You can read the Bible from Genesis to Revelation and it nowhere says that Jerusalem is the only place that God will place His name. The children of Israel did not even observe the holy days in Jerusalem until the time of David as it was still controlled by non-Israelites until then. Even Roman Catholics admit that the biblical holy days were kept outside of Jerusalem by those who professed Christ (even though John Chrysotum claimed made that false Jerusalem-only argument)--please see the article What Does the Catholic Church Teach About Christmas and the Holy Days?.

CG7's reason four: Many aspects of the Old Testament had agricultural frameworks. Until 200 years ago, pretty much the entire world was agriculturally-based. This is a red-herring argument that CG7 has raised.

CG7's reason five: CG7 keeps the Passover based upon the same calendar that it is saying cannot be determined from scripture. Protestants and Catholics, even though they do not as a rule realize it, keep Easter based on a convoluted version of the same calendar.

CG7's reason six: The purpose of observing the Holy Days is to obey God and better understand His plan of salvation. It is because CG7 does not do this that it does not have a proper understanding of many areas of prophecy, including salvation

CG7's reason seven: The observance of the Holy Days does better explain the purpose of Christ's death. The observance does not cast a shadow--it points to what God is doing now and what God will do in the future. The non-obserance of them for invented days (and CG7 has its own version of those) clouds the meaning of the Bible. It is terrible for CG7 to write that the observance of God's commanded Holy Days makes it harder to understand God.

It should be noted that other CG7 groups (such as the one in Meridian Idaho) do keep the biblical holy days. CG7 (Denver), however, is by far the largest CG7 group.

Two articles of related interest may be:

Church of God, Seventh Day: History and Teachings Nearly all COG's I am aware of trace their history through this group. Whaid Rose is its president. Do you know much about them?
Is There "An Annual Worship Calendar" In the Bible? This paper provides a biblical and historical critique of several articles which state that this should be a local decision. Also you can click here for the calendar of Holy Days.

The following news item was of interest:

LDS a cult? 350,000 DVDs try to shake Mormons' faith 

Evangelicals leave discs on Utahns' doors; the church says the film distorts its doctrine

Salt Lake Tribune - March 28, 2007

Salt Lake City, USA - Evangelical Christians claimed they distributed 350,000 anti-Mormon DVDs in Utah on Sunday, hoping to convince members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints that the church is a non-Christian cult.

They said they gave out another 150,000 across the U.S. and Canada - about a half-million altogether...

Joe Wren, a South Ogden Mormon, was among the thousands who found a white bag on a doorknob. After viewing the film and realizing its purpose, he walked his Shadow Valley neighborhood and saw scores of white bags but no volunteers to discuss the issues with him. No one had knocked on his door, either.

"I found it distasteful - not to mention an extremely un-Christian tactic of being so sneaky and underhanded," Wren said. "It's amazing they'd stoop to that level."

As a general rule, we in the COGs do not consider that the Mormons are any less Christian than, for example, Roman Catholics, as they (as well as the Protestants) are not part of the Church Of God. Perhaps I should add that evangelicals tend to hold Martin Luther in high esteem, yet he changed the Bible. Three articles of possible interest may include:

Three Dissimilarities Between The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and the Church of God The COGs are not related to the Mormons and this article gives three reasons why.
Sola Scriptura or Prima Luther? What Did Martin Luther Really Believe About the Bible? Though he is known for his public sola Scriptura teaching, Martin Luther's writings about the Bible suggest he felt that prima Luther was his ultimate authority.
The Similarities and Dissimilarities between Martin Luther and Herbert Armstrong This article clearly shows some of the doctrinal differences between in the two. At this time of doctrinal variety and a tendency by many to accept certain aspects of Protestantism, the article should help clarify why the COG is NOT Protestant.

03/28/07 a.m. CGOM-uk sent an email yesterday that included the following statements:

Keep the Feast: Unleavened Bread
[2007: April 3-9]
  '...purge out the old leaven so that you may be a new lump, even as you are unleavened. For also Christ our Passover was sacrificed for us' (I Corinthians 5:7)  'The Feast of Unleavened Bread'. The words may sound strange to the average Christian, though Bible students will recognize the term. For those who do recognize it, the common belief is that it is a practice limited to Judaism. Yet many thousands of Christians still diligently observe it. How?

 ...To summarize, the Feast of Unleavened Bread is an ancient religious practice with roots that pre-date humanity. It was incorporated by the LORD into the festival calendar of Israel after they left Egypt. It is one of the 'appointed seasons of Jehovah' - not of Moses (Leviticus 23:4), and to this day is part of the divine pattern of worship - in both Biblical Christianity and Judaism [see MiniStudy 41: Feast of the Passover] 

...The Feast is observed annually at fixed dates on the calendar used throughout the Scriptures - though they vary on our modern Western calendar*. It takes place for seven days in early Spring beginning on the 15th of the first month (Nisan) and lasting seven days. It finishes at the end of the 21st day of Nisan:  'In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month, at evening you shall eat unleavened bread, until the twenty-first day of the month, at evening (Exodus 12:18). Remember that the 'day' on that calendar begins at sun-down [* Note: a conversion calendar linking this calendar with our own is available on request] 

...As with any religious festival Unleavened Bread includes  'holy convocations'. It is a time, if possible, for community religious observance: worship, fellowship, Biblical instruction - alongside feasting: Although it lasts for seven days, only the first and last days are commanded for these services: 'And on the first day shall be a holy gathering, and in the seventh day a holy gathering shall be to you. Not any work may be done on them' (v.16).  The intervening days are special, but not convocations (unless so desired). The convocations are 'high day' Sabbaths, on which the activity associated with feasting is acceptable: '...no manner of work shall be done in them, save that which every man must eat' (Exodus 12: 16) 

...A key part of the festival is the partaking of 'unleavened bread' - a term that may need some explanation! It is simply bread and bread products made without a raising agent (yeast, baking powder). Leaven acts by 'puffing up', fermenting, the dough. A small measure was 'hid' in a lump of dough and over time caused it to aerate, to swell (Galatians 5:9). It is a form of corruption. The text enjoins that some unleavened bread is consumed each of the seven days of the Feast:

'...you shall eat unleavened bread seven days. Indeed, on [or by] the first day you shall cause leaven to cease from your houses' (Exodus 12:15). It is, of course, eaten along with other foods. The Festival is not a 'fast', not a 'hair shirt' activity; you can bake and eat tasty unleavened 'goodies'. As here stated, all raising agents and leavened bread are removed from our homes before the Festival begins. But be sensitive to non-observers in your home; for Christians, observance is personal. When eating out during the festival be aware of the content of the food served!

 ...By 'putting out' and abstaining from leavened products we are powerfully and personally reminded of the significance of the practice. It is entirely symbolic, but the seven days abstention are representative of our attitude and behaviour throughout the year. The Bible explains the symbolism. Leaven is not sin - eg it is used of the spread of the Kingdom (Matthew 13:33) - but during the seven-day festival it represents sinful practices. In the context of the observance of the festival in Corinth, for example, Paul cites the toleration of gross sin by the brethren (I Corinthians 5) as their being 'puffed up' (v.2). The Passover lamb, a reflection of Christ, was not to be eaten with leaven. This festival - like the Passover in Judaism - is a celebration of our freedom in Christ who is 'our Passover' (v.7) 

...Leaven also represents false teaching; it spreads insidiously once inserted in the Body of the church:

'...they knew that He did not say to take heed from the leaven of bread, but from the doctrine [teaching] of the Pharisees and Sadducees (Matthew 16:6-12).  

 ..Another significance of leaven is hypocrisy (Luke 12:1), a charge Jesus powerfully levelled at the Pharisees (Matthew 23). They were  obsessed with outward religious observance, while lacking the true spiritual heart of religion.

An article of related interest may be Should Christians Keep the Days of Unleavened Bread? Do they have any use or meaning now?

Starting Sunday, many will call that the beginning of "Holy Week", the "Passion Week", or some similar title. But do you really know what happened on which day of the week when Jesus died? How long are three days and three nights? Did Jesus die on "Good Friday"? Was the resurrection on Sunday? Do you really know?

To answer those questions, here is a new article What Happened in the Crucifixion Week?

This time of year also may be a very good time to learn more about the History of Early Christianity.

It may be of interest to note that Moody Bible Institute now recognizes that Jesus may have been resurrected on a Saturday (and that is in the article What Happened in the Crucifixion Week?). Perhaps the reason that it took them so long to figure this out is that in order to enroll in their school one has to believe doctrines that are not true. For example, here is what its website states:

Moody Bible Institute accepts students from other theological traditions within conservative evangelicalism.  However, to be admitted and to graduate students must personally adhere to and support the following doctrinal positions:

While we in the COGs agree with the inspiration, etc. of Scripture and some of the above, four articles that those associated with Protestantism really need to read are:

Did the True Church Ever Teach a Trinity? Most act like this is so, but is it?
Jesus is God, But Was Made Man Was Jesus fully human and fully God or what?
Hope of Salvation: How the COGs differ from most Protestants How the COGs differ from mainstream Protestants, is perhaps the question I am asked most by those without a COG background.
Sola Scriptura or Prima Luther? What Did Martin Luther Really Believe About the Bible? Though he is known for his public sola Scriptura teaching, Martin Luther's writings about the Bible suggest he felt that prima Luther was his ultimate authority.

One has to ignore one scripture and change another (like Martin Luther did) in order to come to that "faith alone" statement that many Protestants insist on. And one has to ignore/twist what the Bible really teaches to accept the trinity and other inaccuracies of Protestantism.

Click here for previous COG news (includes news on words for Passover/Easter, Living University, Lent, the Treaty of Rome, EU-related Prophecy, WCG and PCG's changing of HWA's writings, Legacy Institute's Footwashing Change, Building plans near Ambassador Auditorium, CG7 and Paul, China and Religion, Pope Benedict advocating truth, Moody Bible' Institute and determining the date of the Resurrection, the ten anniversary of this website, etc.

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Volume 11, issue 2 COG writer B. Thiel (c) 2007