A Call for a Day of Fasting and Prayer
For UNITY in the Church of GOD
This is the first ďdear editorĒ letter Iíve ever written in my life. Let me start by saying shame!, shame!, shame! on all of us! I address this to all those individuals who in their wildest imaginations consider themselves children of the living GOD.
Satan has to be laughing himself to death at our expense, folks. He has us right where he wants us: fragmented, torn asunder, splintered and scattered abroad. All of our various groups claim to represent the one true God, yet walk totally separate paths, trying to accomplish the same goal from a different angle. What an exercise in futility!
I seem to remember something about being baptized into the name of the Father and Son, not some physical organization. That makes me a member of the church of the living God and his Son Jesus Christ. I recollect hearing something about being called to become a servant -- a bond servant, if you will -- to the living God.
Godís church is a spiritual entity, and I couldnít care less what kind of ďmonikerĒ an individual chooses to place upon it, be it UCG-aia, GCG, CGI, stay at home, living room or the myriad of other names people seem to muster up.
We are collectively the Body and church of our Lord Jesus Christ -- if we have Godís spirit. As members duly placed into that Body, we ought to be standing hand in hand, in unity, to accomplish what God has called us as servants to do.
We all know the answer to that, donít we? We are to put forth Godís message to the people of planet earth. Thatís it, folks! We are not here to get anyone ďsavedĒ; only God can do that. Our job is just to get the message out.
Now I ask you: how can this be done by individual little groups?
God must be shaking His head in disbelief at the mess that has been created. Itís time we, who call ourselves children of God, got down on our knees and cried out to God for forgiveness of our rock headed attitudes. Iím reminded of the scripture in 2 Chronicles 7:14, where God says: ďIf My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.Ē
Recently the UCG-aia (United Church of God, An International Association) called for a day of fasting to seek Godís will in endeavors of the church. I think all of us collectively who consider ourselves called and chosen, no matter what banner or flag we align ourselves with and march under, need to set aside a day of fasting and prayer in supplication to God for unity and peace in His church.
God has only one way to get things accomplished: His way, not the way of some would-be leader or group of leaders who have their own ideas of who ought to be in charge. God is in charge, and we ought to remember that!
Itís time the ďleadersĒ of all the factions that call themselves Churches of God would follow the advice in 2 Chronicles 7:14. Also, there is a need to get rid of their rock head (set-in-stone attitude) and come together in unity of spirit to get our work done. Itís time all of us take a deep, self-examining, foot-washing look at how we are dealing with one another.
Our God decides what is right, and Heís already written it down for us. With all this mixed up mess that is occurring now, itís no wonder Jesus said in Luke 18:8: ďWhen the Son of Man comes, will He find faith on the earth?Ē.
Itís pretty hard to build faith when one sees so much infighting and bickering going on in the church of the living God, such as who ought to be in charge. Canít we get it through our rock heads that GOD is in charge? We are only servants in training.
Itís been said a chain is only as strong as its weakest link, and I submit to you brethren, there are a lot of weak links in GODís church. I would ask that all of us would follow Godís request and do what we are asked to do in 2 Chronicles 7:14. Letís get rid of our egos and collectively beseech God to heal His church and forgive all of us of bull-headed attitudes (i.e., ďThere is no one, including GOD, whoís going to tell me what to do!Ē).
It seems to me that attitude was developed somewhere in the Garden of Eden. We are all human and subject to that attitude that must be overcome. Our leadership must set the example, and we in the Body of Christ must follow suit.
Letís stop being a stench in GODís nostrils, and letís follow the example outlined in Romans 12:18: ďIf it is possible, as much as depends on you [us], live peaceably with all men.Ē
It does depend on us, brethren, and it depends upon our getting rid of our rock solid, bull-headed thinking. Only we as individuals can do that. Letís start at the grassroots level -- we, whom God has called to support His work. Who knows? Maybe we can shame our ďleadershipĒ into meeting together to get something started. Wonít you, my brothers and sisters in Christ, whom I love and cherish immensely, join me in setting apart a day of fasting and prayer for the unification of the Body of Jesus the Christ, regardless of the corporate name we associate with?
God wants all of us to march under one banner: His! It can be done, brethren, if we beseech our GOD. The prayers of a righteous man avail much!-- B.B., Arizona
Editorís note: We ran this sincere and impassioned letter across from an article which represents another point of view. Both authors are genuine and honest in what they present, but see things from a different perspective. This points up one of the problems being faced by many in their search for truth: What if two people come to opposite conclusions, yet both are being honest and truthful in their conclusions?
Many who came out of the Worldwide Church of God hold to the idea that the fragmented and scattered remnants must unite behind a leader in order to carry on the global work of proclaiming the gospel to the world before Messiah can return. This article is an articulate and impassioned letter we received addressing that persisting concept. The author of the other article feels that proclaiming the gospel to the world, in the biblical sense, is not in our hands to accomplish.
Both viewpoints deserve serious contemplation. We must leave it up to each reader to make up his or her mind as to which viewpoint is the correct one, or if there are other viewpoints besides these two.
You may also wish to read an article which appeared in ďThe WAYĒ a few years ago, asking if Matthew 24:14, about the gospel going to the world before Christís return, was actually a part of the Great Commission. Click here to read that article.