Monthly letter archive

Monthly Letter, June 2013

Restoring Original Christianity—for Today!

Christian Biblical Church of God

Post Office Box 1442
Hollister, California 95024-1442

Fred R. Coulter,

June 13, 2013

Dear Brethren,

This month's mailing includes the updated booklet, This is Spiritual Warfare. I first wrote this booklet back in 1993 when the largest church of God at the time was being subverted fromwithin by false ministers introducing false doctrines. They began with "new teachings" on the nature of God—which, in reality, was a cleverly-disguised version of the Catholic doctrine of the trinity. The attack continued by changing the annual Passover observance into a weekly communion service. Finally, they abandoned the Sabbath and holy days in favor of Sunday observance and worldly holidays. Now, twenty years later, this corporate organization no longer exists. Through it all, God separated those who were faithful to the truth by allowing them to regroup in different church of God organizations. Nevertheless, today, we must be ever vigilant because the "god of this world," Satan the devil, never ceases in his attempts to undermine the faith of the ministers and brethren of God the Father and Jesus Christ.

The information in this booklet will help each of us stand for the truth—as we are still in a spiritual war. We need to be aware of the devices Satan employs in his attempts to subvert our faith. As Jesus said: "Be on guardlest anyone deceive you. For many shall come in My name, saying, 'I am the Christ'; and they shall deceive many" (Mark 13:5-6).

If we are loving God the Father and Jesus Christ, we can remain faithful and overcome Satan and his cunning tactics. The apostle Peter writes: "Be humbled therefore under the mighty hand of God so that He may exalt you in due time; casting all your cares upon Him, because He cares for you.

Be sober! Be vigilant! For your adversary the devil is prowling about as a roaring lion, seeking anyone he may devour. Whom resist, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are being fulfilled among your brethren who are in the world. Now may the God of all grace, Who has called us unto His eternal glory in Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a little while, Himself perfect you, establish, strengthen, and settle you" (I Pet. 5:6-10).

In a time that had many parallels to today—deceivers subverting the churches and the collapse of society through sin, corruption and war—the apostle John warned the brethren of deceivers who were trying to subvert their faith. "Grace, mercy, and peace shall be with us from God the Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Father, in truth and love. I rejoiced exceedingly that I have found among your children those who are walking in truth, exactly as we received commandment from the Father. And now I beseech you, lady, not as though I am writing a new commandment to you, but that which we have observed from the beginning, that we love one another. And this is the love of God: that we walk according to His commandments. This is the commandment, exactly as you heard from the beginning, that you might walk in it, because many deceivers have entered into the world—those who do not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh. This is the spirit of the deceiver and the antichrist. Watch out for yourselves in order that we may not lose the things we have accomplished, but that we may receive a full reward" (II John 3-8).

Jesus gives this promise to those who overcome: "But hold fast what you have until I come. And to the one who overcomes, and keeps My works unto the end, I will give authority over the nations; and he shall shepherd them with an iron rod, as vessels of pottery are broken in pieces; as I have also received from My Father" (Rev. 2:25-27).

Where Are We Today? What happens in the Church of God often takes place in the world. Indeed, it is exactly as Jesus said it would be in the end time: false prophets, wars, upheavals, revolutions, oppression by governments. Let's examine a key prophecy that will be fulfilled between now and Jesus' return—global deception.

Prophecies concerning the end times are being fulfilled step by step. And for those yet remaining, the foundation for their fulfillment has been laid. Indeed, world conditions—in religion, government and economics—are getting worse and worse. Precious few are fighting against the powerful tide of deception, corruption and scandals. And, in time, they will lose the battle—because the powerful elite of this world, who serve Satan the devil, are able to frustrate and defeat their efforts.

While there are many who realize that Satan is the source of all evil, they are too few to actually turn back the tide of evil coming upon the world. As prophesied concerning these last days (Rev. 13), the world is increasingly coming under the power of Satan—engulfed by sin and oppression. When the majority of people reject God and His Word, they will ultimately end up worshiping Satan (Rev. 13; II Thess. 2:1-12). Hence, Satan is truly deceiving the whole world (Rev. 12:9). He retains a powerful grip over all mankind—with the exception of the elect, who belong to God the Father and Jesus Christ (I John 5:19).

During Satan's temptation of Jesus, the devil offered Him power and rulership over all the kingdoms of the world: "Then the devil led Him up into a high mountain and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time. And the devil said to Him, 'I will give You all this authority, and the glory of them all; for it has been delivered to me, and I give it to whomever I desire. Therefore, if You will worship me in my presence, all things shall be Yours.' But Jesus answered and said to him, 'Get behind Me, Satan; for it is written, "You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only shall you serve" ' " (Luke 4:5-8).

How was all this authority and power given to Satan in the first place? It started with Adam and Eve when they ate of the "Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil." Satan led them to believe that by eating of that tree they would become like God—able to decide for themselves what is good and evil. Indeed, when they rejected God's instructions they transferred themselves from being under the authority of God to being under the authority of Satan the devil.

From that time to now—with the exception of those God is directly calling—all mankind has been left to develop their own religions, governments and economic systems. Thus, while nations and empires may rise to great power, they all ultimately fail because they have rejected the true God and unwittingly followed Satan.

We know from the Word of God that Satan will, in the end time, become so powerful that only the return of Christ will bring an end to his deceptive rule. When Jesus returns, He will first remove this spiritual blindness: "And He will destroy in this mountain the face of the covering which covers all people, and the veil that is woven over all nations" (Isa. 25:7).

Today, we can see that the entire world is being seduced and brought under the power of Satan as he weaves his vast deception, which, like a veil or covering, blinds mankind to his system. The result is that the majority of people today are pushing aside the Word of God for the pleasures of sin: "But wicked men and imposters shall become worse and worse, deceiving others and being deceived themselves" (II Tim. 3:13). Thus, sin and transgression against God are multiplying, and lawlessness abounds as everyone does what it right in his or her own eyes. Sin is accepted as normal. Perversion is embraced as enlightened behavior. Consequently, societies are sinking deeper and deeper into the vortex of evil and wickedness, as they are led astray by Satan and his demons. Paul writes: "Now the Spirit tells us explicitly that in the latter times some shall apostatize from the faith, and shall follow deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons; speaking lies in hypocrisy, their consciences having been cauterized with a hot iron" (I Tim. 4:1-2).

The Bible repeatedly prophesies of the fall of nations because they knowingly reject God and His Word. As they continue to hardened their hearts and revel in their willful rebellion—completely deserting God—He abandons them to wallow in their sins. Because God will not be mocked, this is a necessary measure that He takes in hopes that they will repent. If they do not repent, God's righteous judgment is fully executed upon them.

Though it has been repeated many times in history, what Paul was inspired to write in Romans the first chapter is in full force today—worldwide. "Indeed, the wrath of God is revealed from heaven upon all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness; because that which may be known of God is manifest among them, for God has manifested it to them; for the invisible things of Him are perceived from the creation of the world, being understood by the things that were made—both His eternal power and Godhead—so that they are without excuse;

Because when they knew God, they glorified Him not as God, neither were thankful; but they became vain in their own reasonings, and their foolish hearts were darkened. While professing themselves to be the wise ones, they became fools. And changed the glory of the incorruptible God into the likeness of an image of corruptible man, and of birds, and four-footed creatures, and creeping things.

For this cause, God also abandoned them to uncleanness through the lusts of their hearts, to disgrace their own bodies between themselves, who exchanged the truth of God for the lie; and they worshiped and served the created thing more than the One Who is Creator, Who is blessed into the ages. Amen.

For this cause, God abandoned them to disgraceful passions; for even their women changed the natural use of sex into that which is contrary to nature; and in the same manner also the men, having left the natural use of sex with the woman, were inflamed in their lustful passions toward one another—men with men shamelessly committing lewd acts, and receiving back within themselves a fitting penalty for their error.

And in exact proportion as they did not consent to have God in their knowledge, God abandoned them to a reprobate mind, to practice those things that are immoral; being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, malice; full of envy, murder, strife, guile, evil dispositions; whisperers, slanderers, God-haters, insolent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things and practices; disobedient to parents, void of understanding, covenant-breakers, without natural affection, implacable and unmerciful; who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who commit such things are worthy of death, not only practice these things themselves, but also approve of those who commit them" (Rom. 1:18-32).

When the Antichrist of Revelation 13 comes on the scene, the deception will be complete. Thus, the stage will be set for the beginning of the Great Tribulation—when the Beast is given full power and authority over the whole world. This will be the final satanic, global empire. After the Beast's deadly wound is healed, he will be worshiped as God: "And I saw one of his heads as ifit were slain to death, but his deadly wound was healed; and the whole earth was amazed and followed the beast. And they worshiped the dragon, who gave his authority to the beast. And they worshiped the beast, saying, 'Who is like the beast? Who has the power to make war against him?'

And a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies was given to him; and authority was given to him to continue for forty-two months. And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme His name, and His tabernacle, and those who dwell in heaven. And he was given power to make war against the saints, and to overcome them; and he was given authority over every tribe and language and nation. And all who dwell on the earth will worship him, whose names have not been written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. If anyone has an ear, let him hear" (Rev. 13:3-9).

Today, the world is filled with chaos and confusion, wars and disasters, plagues and financial peril—all of which are paving the way for this final Beast system. When it comes, the world will be overwhelmed by great deception. By this time, Satan's power will have reached its peak. Paul warns Christians about being deceived by the coming Beast and its worldwide satanic system: "Now we beseech you, brethren, concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him, that you not be quickly shaken in mind, nor be troubled—neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by epistle, as if from us, saying that the day of Christ is present.

Do not let anyone deceive you by any means because that day will not come unless the apostasy [the complete rejection of God the Father and Jesus Christ by the world] shall come first, and the man of sin shall be revealedthe son of perdition, the one who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God, or that is an object of worship; so that he comes into the temple of God and sits down as God, proclaiming that he himself is God.

Do you not remember that when I was still with you, I told you these things? And now you understand what is holding him back in order for him to be revealed in his own set time. For the mystery of lawlessness is already working; only there is one Who is restraining at the present time until it arises out of the midst. And then the lawless one will be revealed (whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth, and will destroy with the brightness of His coming); even the one whose coming is according to the inner working of Satan, with all power and signs and lying wonders, and with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in those who are perishing because they did not receive the love of the truth, so that they might be saved" (II Thess 2:1-10).

Notice that when people reject the truth of God and become ensnared in sin—actually worshipping this Satan-possessed Antichrist—God responds in kind. "And for this cause, God will send upon them a powerful deception that will cause them to believe the lie, so that all may be judged who did not believe the truth, but who took pleasure in unrighteousness" (verses 11-12).

Paul's encouraging letter to the Thessalonians is also for us today, so that we can likewise remain faithful—in spite of what is taking place in the world: "Now we are duty-bound to give thanks to God always concerning you, brethren, who are beloved by the Lord, because God from the beginning has called you unto salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth unto which He called you by our gospel to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. So then, brethren, stand firm, and hold fast the ordinances [the true teachings of Jesus Christ] that you were taught, whether by word or by our epistle. Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and God—even our Father, Who loved us and gave us eternal encouragement and good hope through grace—encourage your hearts and establish you in every good word and work" (verses 13-17).

Let us always remember, since the Lord is for us, nothing can stand against us. King David wrote: "The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid? When the wicked, my enemies and my foes, came upon me to eat up my flesh, they stumbled and fell. Though an army should encamp against me, my heart shall not be afraid; though war should rise against me, even then I will be confident. One thing I have desired from the Lord, that I will seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord and to inquire in His temple, for in the time of trouble He shall hide me in His pavilion, in the secret place of His tabernacle He shall hide me; He shall set me upon a rock" (Psa. 27:1-5).

Brethren, every day we need to draw close to God in heartfelt prayer and study so that we can continue to grow in grace and knowledge and always be overcoming. We continuously thank God the Father and Jesus Christ for Their goodness and mercy. We thank you for your steadfast love and faithfulness to God and to one another. We thank you for your prayers for us and for all the brethren—and for your faithfulness in tithes and offerings. We pray that God will continue to bless you and keep watch over you in everything. We continue to pray for you, for your health, your healing, and that God's love and grace will be upon you in all circumstances.

With love in Christ Jesus,

Fred R. Coulter


P.S.: My wife, Dolores, is recovering from her bout with pneumonia. She greatly appreciates your prayers and thanks you all for your cards, kindness and thoughtfulness.