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UCG Chairman on Dec 2014 CoE Conference

UCG Chairman Robin Webber has just posted a letter which is mainly an, “Attitude Preparation” for even more doctrinal change.  He also gives his reason for changing the name of the “Good News.”  I have bolded some words in the letter for emphasis.

Remember they say that they are not changing doctrine; they are just understanding the doctrine better and explaining it more properly.   Of course this is the same double talk, deceit and verbal slight of hand, that these same people used to support the Tkach changes. 

After all, changing their understanding and teachings on a doctrine; is de facto changing the doctrine without changing the doctrine’s name! and then saying that they have not changed the doctrine, when they have totally changed the meaning of what they call doctrine!  

This is the same as putting nails in the honey jar and calling the nails honey because they keep the honey label!  They may still keep a doctrine by name, but they are changing the meaning, understanding and explanation of the doctrine completely! 

Letter from Robin Webber, Chairman – “Council Meeting Update” – December 16, 2014  – December 16, 2014

 

Dear fellow elders and members,The Council of Elders of the United Church of God met in Milford, Ohio, from Dec. 7 to Dec. 11. We started on Sunday with a retreat at a nearby facility where we could collectively appeal to God for His direction. When we approach God on our knees and surrender our good ideas to His perfection, things happen!Our four days of formal meetings followed. It’s always exciting to share a “good report” (Philippians 4:8).I am now in my seventh consecutive year on the Council, and I believe that this has been the most spiritually productive series of meetings that I have yet experienced. Victor Kubik, our president, joined us in the afternoon meetings, and he too is excited with not merely the discussions, but some of the specific “take-away” items that the administration can begin to readily implement.

ADMIN:  Here comes the need for deeper understanding.  This need is absolutely overwhelming, but instead of moving towards a true zeal to KEEP the whole Word of God, they are moving away from the truth of God and sound doctrine. 

They have already dramatically changed their teachings from a “The law defines Love”  into separating Love from Law and setting them against each other; and then teaching that Love trumps Law; when biblically the Law IS Love.  They have also perverting the biblical Jesus from one who loathes all sin and will never tolerate any sin, demanding sincere repentance to “Go and sin no more;” and changing their teachings about Jesus, into a completely false permissive Jesus who tolerates sin.  This watering down of Jesus Christ is denying His authority as Jude warns us against.  

Robin uses the right words, but their actions betray these fine words as a cover story for departing from the Word of God, in the name of the Word of God; just as Jesus warned would happen in the Ekklesia last days, Mat 24.  Remember that evil tries to cloak itself as an angel of light.  It is not what the claim, but what they do that should be watched.

The retreat began with going around the table and sincerely speaking to one another about our individual spiritual state, what we saw as needs in our personal walk with Christ, and that we look at ourselves first before reaching out to impact others. We are all to be reminded by Jesus’ question: “For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?” (Matthew:16:26For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?). We concluded: We all—every Council and administration figure, pastor and member—need to seek an even deeper and exhaustive desire to center our thoughts, actions and underlying motivations in light of this “lamp unto our feet” (Psalm:119:105Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.) and this decisive instrument designed to discern our thoughts (Hebrews:4:12For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.)—the Bible!

Beyond our personal needs as individual Christians, we also affirmed our God-given responsibility to not only “tend” (John:21:16He saith to him again the second time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my sheep.), but also to “feed the flock” (John:21:15-17[15]So when they had dined, Jesus saith to Simon Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my lambs.[16]He saith to him again the second time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my sheep.[17]He saith unto him the third time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? Peter was grieved because he said unto him the third time, Lovest thou me? And he said unto him, Lord, thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee. Jesus saith unto him, Feed my sheep.). That is, to feed the flock directly and correctly from the living Word of God. It’s the Council’s resolve to go even deeper in establishing the Church’s mooring and understanding on the Word of God. Just like the deer described in Psalms, panting for the water brooks, we too must pant for the Word of God (Psalm:42:1As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God.).

The Council recognizes that our ministry today is stretched thinner than ever in “tending” multiple congregations and serving in a variety of administrative or editorial functions. Also, we have new pastors and occasionally bi-vocational pastors, as well as new elders serving the flock. More than ever and whoever and wherever we serve, we ministers must all go back to basics and put first things first. We centered on three scriptures to move forward on what we believe God is directing us to further develop.

ADMIN:  Watering down or changing [updating] doctrine is seen as a matter of highest priority. 

The Bible Reading Program will be used to re-educate the brethren into their new understandings, rather than any announcements of change, thereby avoiding the Tkach mistake of announcing changes all at once.

1) “Let the elders who rule well be counted worthy of double honor, especially those who labor in the word and doctrine!” ( 1 Timothy:5:17Let the elders that rule well be counted worthy of double honour, especially they who labour in the word and doctrine. , emphasis added). There are many demands thrust on us and many voices coming our way, but the Word says we are to “labor in the word and doctrine.” Following this biblical rule of thumb, we believe this is a pivotal priority without hesitation in serving the brethren. Recent attendee surveys speak to the brethren’s desire to go deeper into God’s Word and have our ministry draw out the rich meanings underneath the surface in God’s Holy Word—be it doctrine, Christian living or prophecy. And to that end, based on multiple comments from the recent surveys, we are moving forward as soon as personnel and resources allow to engaging our membership once again with the Bible Commentary (also called the Bible Reading Program).

ADMIN:  The highest priority will be re-educating the ministry with video seminars.  Will they teach that Jesus Christ does not tolerate any willful sin?  Will they teach a zeal for the Sabbath and Holy Days, to stop sinning by calling God’s Sabbaths holy, while justifying polluting them?  Will they stop coddling sin and sinners and begin to powerfully rebuke all sin? 

2) Beyond “laboring in the Word,” we also need to move to the next step of “rightfully dividing the word of truth” (2 Timothy:2:15Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.). It’s not only seeing the need to spend time in study, but to accurately draw out the spiritual treasures implanted in them. To this end, the administration will be developing seminars for the entire ministry to watch to further fulfill this scriptural admonition. In so doing it’s our hope that the keys to how to properly approach the study of the Bible will in turn be given to every member.

3) Thus, it’s only when we have labored in the Word and rightfully divided the Word of Truth that we have the privilege “to preach the Word” (2 Timothy:4:2Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.) in sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ and the Kingdom of God and making disciples in all nations. And indeed, that is the ordained role of the ministry.

Therefore, I’m pleased to announce the theme of our upcoming 20th anniversary of General Conference of Elders (GCE) meetings will be “Labor in the Word.” It’s our hope that this will glorify God and serve those in our charge to feed them God’s nourishment as He intends.

I’m also pleased to bring exciting news regarding our major publication The Good News.The Council and the administration have discussed for nearly a two-year period how to: 1) simplify the pathway for people to access our various media outlets, 2) while at the same time magnifying the ongoing impact of what we can share in their spiritual journey. The Council members (11 were present) unanimously decided to approve the administration’s proposal to change the name of The Good News to Beyond Today, which coincides with the title of our television program.

Why? Currently, no one can have full rights to the “Good News” name—which multiple organizations use every day. There are multiple Good News magazines used by a variety of organizations. It’s in the public domain. But we do have the trademark (service mark for non-profits) to Beyond Today. The subtitle is projected to read: “Help for Today, Hope for Tomorrow,” which defines our writing and engages the audience in the wide framework of our calling to be followers of Jesus Christ today, while looking towards the ultimate hope of God’s Kingdom.

ADMIN:  They preach a vague generic evangelical mouthing of the word repent, while teaching tolerance for sin; and avoid the words of Jesus to:  “Go and sin NO more.”   They say the Sabbath is holy, and then justify polluting it.  They say we should repent and then say that the brethren must tolerate sin like the Corinthians tolerated sin and were strongly rebuked by Paul for doing so.  Paul absolutely and powerfully rejects tolerating sin or coddling sinners.  he commands that willful repetitive sinners be expelled from teh assemblies. 

1 Cor 5  It is reported commonly that there is fornication among you, and such fornication as is not so much as named among the Gentiles, that one should have his father’s wife.

And ye are puffed up, [with pride thinking ourselves full of godly love by our tolerance for sin] and have not rather mourned, that he that hath done this deed might be taken away from among you.

For I verily, as absent in body, but present in spirit, have judged already, as though I were present, concerning him that hath so done this deed, In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when ye are gathered together, and my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ, To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.

Your glorying [Our pride in our sin of tolerating sin is not good, it is an evil in itself; for a little tolerated sin in our congregations pollutes the whole church] is not good. Know ye not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump?

The change is in the title alone. This is not a philosophical change regarding the purpose for the magazine or the intended audience. We’re a church, and God has given us a message not to be cut in half! The magazine will continue to define and point to the reality of the sponsor organization—the United Church of God, an International Association. All previously produced Good News magazine material remains and will remain on our website. We will continue to focus on doctrine, Christian living and prophecy and the need for all to come to repentance and faith towards God (Mark:1:14-15[14]Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God,[15]And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.). Mr. Kubik, who led the administration’s presentation on this matter, will post an audio podcast on UCG.org that can be downloaded by this coming Friday, Dec. 19. It will further discuss the strategy and benefits of this move. Please feel free to play it in services. Once it’s posted, it may be accessed directly at www.ucg.org/blog/inside-united-podcast-episode-041/.

I want to conclude by sharing that our major strategic planning exercise is well underway for completion at the end of February and for ultimate approval of the GCE in May. We discussed strategies for assuring quality care for our congregations, youth programs and for the ongoing welfare of our dedicated employees. One Council member dynamically stated in our meetings: “When I see the young people coming up through our youth programs and camps, they are developing—we are teaching them to look to God. I’m excited about the future of the Church!” And looking to the future needs for God’s spiritual children around the world, we were able to approve an ordination of a faithful man in an international area.

So I share this “good report” with you. Let’s all be excited and thrilled with what our Heavenly Father is performing through His beloved Son Jesus Christ to lives surrendered for a greater purpose than themselves or beyond today.

May God’s grace and peace be yours,

Robin Webber

Chairman, General Conference of Elders

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