ANNOUNCEMENTS:  For several days i have been working very hard on a post about the apostasy of the church into Roman Catholicism; the history of the scriptures and attempts to pervert them; and the lessons that the COG can learn from these things.  This post should be very informative, but it will also be a very powerful message.

TOMORROW’S NEWS: TODAY!    Full Text of Presidents Peres and Obama’s Remarks to AIPAC, Sunday, March 4, 2012

WORLD NEWS:   After defeating the rebels in Homs, aid is still being blocked.  This is because:  1  most civilians fled with the rebels.  2  There are still pockets of resistance and fighting,  3  The area is filled with booby traps and mines.  The western media are making propaganda by saying that aid is being blocked, implying that the Syrians are vicious and not giving the real reasons.

The rebels have used the focus on Homs to infiltrate their army into the north from Turkey and are massing at Dir al-Zur and Rastan on the Euphrates and at Idlib.  It is reported that up to 20,000 have invaded Syria from Turkey in the north.

Syria is now moving against them and is bombing Rastan by air and massing forces  around Dir al-Zur. 

It seems that the battle for Homs was just a distraction by the rebels, while they invaded quietly in the north from Turkey and now the real fight is beginning.  This is expected to escalate over the next few weeks with the Arab Summit [of Sunni Heads of State] in Baghdad on Mar 29 expected to condemn Syria and demand safe havens.

The conflict has now shifted to the Turkish border and safe havens have suddenly become practical.  After the Arab Summit another attempt at a Security Council resolution may be made; after which, with or without approval; safe havens are to be declared and a massive air campaign as in Libya is planned to be initiated.

UCG

MINISTERIAL CODE OF ETHICS

United Church of God, an International Association

PREAMBLE:

As a minister of Jesus Christ, I accept the duty bestowed on me through ordination, by prayer and the

laying on of hands. I am dedicated first and foremost to preserving my personal relationship with God,

therefore I am committed to basing my life upon the foundation of the Word of God. I am resolved to

conduct myself in the ministry according to the ethical standards set forth in I Timothy 3 and Titus 1 and

as amplified in this Code of Ethics so that my service in the ministry will be acceptable to God and

beneficial to the Church, and my life will be a godly example to the Church, the community and the world.

Serving as a minister of Jesus Christ and as an elder in the United Church of God, an International

Association (“Church, or “UCGIA”), I fully accept and agree to abide by the following goals,

guidelines, commitments and ethical principles:

 

Personal Responsibilities:

1) I will strive to maintain my relationship with God through prayer, Bible study, meditation and

fasting.

2) I will endeavor to maintain my physical, mental and emotional health.

3) I will strive to manage my life by maintaining a balance in family matters, church duties and

personal needs.

4) I will not use the office of the ministry to take advantage of any relationship or activity that may lead

to a conflict of interest, the exploitation or manipulation of any member, or any unethical personal or

material gain.

5) If I become a substance abuser, acquire a harmful addiction or have a diagnosable mental disorder, I

agree to seek professional counseling and care in order to recover. I understand that if necessary, I

may be relieved of my ministerial duties while undergoing treatment for the same.

 

Family Responsibilities:

1) If married, I will place my marriage and family as the highest priority in my life after my personal

relationship with God and Jesus Christ.

2) If married, I will respect the unique role of my wife, to love, honor and recognize her as a partner in

marriage and the family, and will seek to meet her physical, mental, spiritual and emotional needs.

3) If blessed with children, I will regard them as a gift from God and seek to love them and meet their

individual mental, physical, spiritual and emotional needs.

ADMIN NOTE:  The scriptures require marriage and older children as a normal pre-equistite for ordination to the ministry, although one can accept that older persons may have lost a wife over time.

 

Church and Congregational Responsibilities:

1) I will strive to faithfully shepherd the congregation(s) I serve by following the example of Jesus

Christ in love, service, humility, respect, patience, wisdom and integrity.

2) I will strive to faithfully use my time and energies in ministering to God’s people through proper

work habits and schedules.

3) In my preaching and teaching responsibilities I will give priority to adequate prayer, planning,

preparation and spiritual growth through conscientious study so my presentations will be biblically

based, historically and doctrinally sound, interesting and clearly communicated.

4) I will keep confidential all matters discussed in a counseling setting, unless the person being

counseled gives the indication of being a danger to themselves or another person, such as a

revelation of child sexual abuse or other disclosures required by law.

5) In my ministerial counseling I will limit my advice and counsel to my areas of expertise or formal

training and will refer members to other ministers and professionals for any matter for which I am

not qualified.

6) I recognize the influence I hold over those I counsel and will never take advantage of their

vulnerability, such as becoming sexually or romantically involved with them. I will arrange visits in

order to avoid being isolated with a woman who is not my spouse or with another’s child unless

accompanied by another person.

7) I acknowledge that all local congregations of UCGIA are, under our Rules of Association, a part of

UCGIA. I further recognize that any and all physical assets, including local bank accounts used by or

for those local congregations, belong to UCGIA for use as directed by the UCGIA administration.

Consequently, I agree that should I leave a congregation(s) or not remain as an elder in UCGIA, that

I am not entitled to take, and must return, any assets of UCGIA and/or of a local congregation of

UCGIA or its affiliates around the world.

ADMIN NOTE:  Most of these points are the same as in the past.  Number 7 is a new addition and applied to local congregations is reasonable, however it is highly questionable if an attempt is made to make this applicable to independent Associated Congregations breaking off the Association; and claims that all local funds of Associated churches belong to the UCG USA when they do not, but belong to the locally incorporated,  Associated Church.  This is an ambiguous matter that should be “clarified”.  Rules of Association

 

Responsibility within the Ministry:

1) If married, I will endeavor to honor and respect my wife as part of my ministry, so that my ministry

may be more effective.

2) I will endeavor to honor and relate to all ministers, especially those with whom I directly serve as

coworkers in the work of God, respecting their roles and cooperating with them.

3) I will strive to serve my ministerial colleagues and their families with counsel, support and personal

assistance when needed.

4) I will seek to promote an atmosphere of openness and unity within the body by supporting and

appropriately communicating with the home office staff or the international equivalent.

ADMIN NOTE:   What about communicating openly with the brethren?

5) I will endeavor to promote respect for Church leadership and unity within UCGIA. I will seek to

eliminate destructive gossip or hearsay by going directly to the individual involved. I will

communicate directly with the responsible person(s) to obtain clarity or to clear up any questions

or accusations that are causing division.

ADMIN NOTE:   If actually followed, #5 in actually investigating and resolving issues would be a marked improvement from past actions in UCG and ALL the Major COG Groups.

 

Responsibility Within the Community:

1) As defined by Scripture, I will accept my duty to be a godly example and light in the world.

2) I will practice responsible citizenship and not engage in activities that are illegal, unethical or unbiblical.

ADMIN NOTE:   The caveat should be added that the State’s laws are secondary to God’s commandments.

 

Responsibility Toward the Governance of UCGIA

As a minister serving in the United Church of God, an International Association, I affirm my commitment

to uphold:

• The Fundamental Beliefs as stated in the Constitution of the United Church of God, an

International Association.

• The purpose, mission, goals and values of the Church.

• The Constitution, Bylaws and Rules of Association of the Church and the governing structure

described by them.

• The decisions of the General Conference of Elders (“GCE”), the Council of Elders (“COE”), the UCGIA administration and international equivalents. If I disagree, I reserve the right to respectfully seek change in any decision of the Church’s governing and administrative bodies in accordance with the governing documents of UCGIA, procedures and precedents.

ADMIN NOTE:   This amounts to a pledge of allegiance to men and their list of Foundational Beliefs; with faithful obedience to God and HIS commandments not even mentioned.  This is obviously a corporate unity document based on loyalty to the corporate system and leaders, and not based on unity with Christ.

There is no mention anywhere about loyalty to God’s word or the keeping of God’s commandments.  The only statement even close is “I will strive to maintain my relationship with God through prayer, Bible study, meditation and fasting.”  Faithful obedience to God is never mentioned!

A new method of amending the Foundational Beliefs is to be approved at the May GCE and they are not instituting that because no changes are coming.

 

I further agree to:

• Denounce divisions and schisms as a means of resolving differences.

• Support and assist the GCE, the COE and the administration or international equivalent in denouncing and curtailing divisive behavior on the part of anyone in the ministry or membership by word or deed.

• Encourage all to follow, and to work within, established procedures and processes of the Church for any grievances or for any desired change in either governance or leadership in the Church.

 

Should I ever leave or otherwise not remain as an elder of the Church, I will not proselytize members of UCGIA in order to draw them away or to gain a following for myself or some other religious organization.

ADMIN NOTE:  This makes merchandise of the brethren as they are speaking of drawing people away from UCG and are not speaking of drawing people away from God.  The whole focus is corporate and on their control:  NOT on Christ or the Father.  

This should not prevent a man from letting his light shine as an example, and as per the command of Jesus Christ; which light will attract like-minded persons and offend others.  When an organization goes astray, an elder should continue diligently teaching God’s commandments and setting a Godly example, which is the JOB of any elder. 

An elder should NOT try and gain a following for himself in any circumstances,  but should urge all people to follow Christ.  He should continue to teach the truth until he is discharged or forced to resign.  After he is no longer employed, he has not only a RIGHT, but a DUTY and OBLIGATION before God; to fulfill has responsibilities as an elder and take a stand for the truth.

The loop hole in the above statement is that encouraging brethren to follow Almighty God IS NOT seeking a personal following.

The error of COGWA is that it was primarily a political dispute about power and control, and that many took wages while paying lip-service to the UCG as they worked to attack it.

Elders must not hide their loyalties; which must always be to God FIRST, above the organization.  They must openly teach the truth and if corrected must then resign.  If a change to the list of Fundamental Beliefs is made which cannot be supported, they must plainly say so and resign. 

 

I am in agreement with this Ministerial Code of Ethics and will always strive to practice these ethical

principles. I agree that this Code supersedes and replaces any previous UCGIA Ministerial Code of Ethics.

Signed: _________________________________________________ Date: ___________________

Print name ______________________________________________

 

 

Esther [Hadassah]

Much of scriptural history is allegory, for example certain events in the life of Abraham.  That does not mean that every detail is a part of the allegory.  Yet many of the main events can be pointed out as allegory.

For far too long the Book of Esther has been sidelined as a mere historical book intended to show why Jews observe Purim; or to show the faithfulness of Hadassah.  If that were the case, why is the Feast of Dedication [Hanukkah]  not in Holy Scripture?

No, there is far more to Esther than mere history, for ALL scripture is written for our instruction and edification, and all these things were recorded as examples for our good.

This is a short book full of allegory and prophetic significance revealing much about our God and his plan.

Esther is an allegory which can be understood only through understanding the roles of the main characters.

CAST OF CHARACTERS

1)   First is the great King who is king of all the known world and who cannot be approached, except the attendee first be “CALLED” to him.

This great king pictures Jesus Christ as Lord of all the earth.

2)   Vashti, who is like the first bride of Christ, like physical Israel; she goes to do her own thing, continually rebellious, disobedient and  neglectful of her Lord.  She refuses to be the example for all peoples that is her duty and responsibility as the Queen.

3)   Next is Hadassah [Myrtle], to whom the king gave the name Esther, which is Ishtar, or Queen of Heaven.  While this is the name of a pagan goddess, please consider that, as an allegory; the bride of Christ, the collective saints will be a true Queen of Heaven.

Now consider that this Esther is called out to an opportunity to become the bride of the Great King and is a Jew indeed [spiritually].  As such Esther is a picture of the called out saints.  She then becomes Queen, picturing the resurrected saints married to the Great King of the whole earth.

Esther was incomparable in beauty, faithfulness, wisdom and righteousness, without any blemish as befits the bride of Christ.

4)   Physical Judah as a portrayal of those hated by Satan [Haman].

5)   Haman, clearly a picture of Satan, the enemy of Judah who has access to the king and who tries to destroy them.

6)  Mordecai, who is a type of God’s leading guiding  spirit of wisdom; which Hadassah follows and is subject to.

 

OUTLINE

Hadassah is orphaned and has no attachments to this world, being raised by her uncle Mordecai.

The King has a wife, Vashti; who refuses the king’s command to be seen as an example for the nations and citizens of the world, and who brings disrepute and shame on the great King.

For her rebellion and terrible example she is rejected from being Queen, and is replaced by  others called to train for that dignity.

Hadassah is called along with many others to be a part of the bride of the King, as a type of the bride of Christ and is raised and taught [made perfect] by God’s spirit, having nothing in this world.  All of these “Called” women have the opportunity to be married to the King and to become Queen, but ONLY the one chosen will become Queen.

Esther 2:17   And the king loved Esther above all the women, and she obtained grace and favour in his sight more than all the virgins; so that he set the royal crown upon her head, and made her queen instead of Vashti.

Even so many are called but few will be chosen to become a part of the bride and a Queen in God’s Kingdom.  Hadassah overcomes and by her perfection is made Queen; she does not love her life, willing to give herself for her people [which is also for the king's good].

So Hadassah sought advice from Mordecai and he responded:   Esther 4:13   Then Mordecai commanded to answer Esther, Think not with thyself that thou shalt escape in the king’s house, more than all the Jews.

14For if thou altogether holdest thy peace at this time, then shall there enlargement and deliverance arise to the Jews from another place; but thou and thy father’s house shall be destroyed: and who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this?

Now Haman [Satan] comes along to try and destroy all Judah, this speaks of the coming great tribulation when Satan uses the peoples of this world to try and destroy Israel;  BOTH physical and spiritual, and they are given over to him.

Because of the faith, love, courage, blamelessness and spiritual beauty of the Hadassah, she is chosen to be the Queen;  and through her Haman is rebuked and all Israel pictured by Judah is saved.  Rom 11:26   And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob: 27For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins.

The Great King intervenes to destroy Haman [Satan's puppets] also strengthening Judah to rise up and fight against her enemies giving them victory through HIS power!

Even so Judah shall also fight at Jerusalem in that day.

Zech 10:6     And I will strengthen the house of Judah, and I will save the house of Joseph, and I will bring them again to place them; for I have mercy upon them: and they shall be as though I had not cast them off: for I am the LORD their God, and will hear them.  

Zech 14:13   And it shall come to pass in that day, that a great tumult from the LORD shall be among them; and they shall lay hold every one on the hand of his neighbour, and his hand shall rise up against the hand of his neighbour.

14And Judah also shall fight at Jerusalem;

Zech 12:8   The LORD also shall save the tents of Judah first, that the glory of the house of David and the glory of the inhabitants of Jerusalem do not magnify themselves against Judah.

8In that day shall the LORD defend the inhabitants of Jerusalem; and he that is feeble among them at that day shall be as David; and the house of David shall be as God, as the angel of the LORD before them.

9And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem.

10And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn.

11In that day shall there be a great mourning  [REPENTANCE] in Jerusalem, as the mourning of Hadadrimmon in the valley of Megiddon.

Please consider these things with prayer and then read through the book of Esther, this time carefully considering each detail.  The allegory will open up to you as a beautiful flower opens with the light of dawn.

Purim is NOT a commanded High Holy Day,  yet it is  an event in Holy Scripture  worthy of remembrance and observing by Spiritual Judah;  in honour of the wonders God has done.

It is an allegory of the Bride of Christ and the saving of all Israel.

 

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