T he letter that follows was issued during the month of November, 2004 to some of the premier leaders in the Churches of God. These men were selected because of their longstanding service to God’s work and His people. Each of these men has rightfully earned the highest respect of Blow the Trumpet and it is with genuine humility that we write. We see these leaders as honorable servants who have had a profound effect on the Church today.
However, because of the urgency of the times, we could no longer remain silent. Our purpose for writing is to bring to their attention a matter of great importance and to appeal to them to take immediate action in correcting a dangerous behavior that has crept into the Church. Regrettably, this practice has become so common that it is also engaged in and even defended by many Church leaders today. Furthermore, it has now come to a point to where those who dare to question this practice are viewed as extremists. With this in mind we write. Not because we derive pleasure out of it, but because we know the consequence for silence. This being the case, it is our sincere hope that these fine men will take this message seriously, and prayerfully act on it. If they choose another course it will be in Gods hands.
O ur purpose for writing is to bring to your attention a matter of great importance – one that must be addressed by you as a leader in God’s Church. We understand that our appeal may give rise to a certain degree of suspicion on your part. However we respectfully request that you invest just a few minutes of your time and read this very important correspondence. Any skepticism that may arise is only natural in light of the plethora of fringe elements within the Church today. However we are not such a group. We also appreciate the fact that you may want to simply discard this letter and go about your service to God. However, please understand that to do so would be a grave mistake. Furthermore, your service to the Creator of Heaven and Earth is directly linked to the words that follow.
Before addressing this issue we feel it is only appropriate to introduce ourselves -- for it is very unlikely you are aware of our work, although that will not always be the case. Blow the Trumpet is an end time work dedicated to proclaiming the gospel as a warning witness. We currently are in the early stages of this endeavor but are garnering considerable support with the passing of each day.
At this point it is important to understand what Blow the Trumpet is not. We are not a church. We do not have congregations nor are we sponsored by any COG organization or group. We say this in order for you to understand that there is no hidden agenda in our appeal. We are not trying to strip your work of the people who so generously give of their lives to it. Furthermore, Blow the Trumpet is not the slightest bit interested in forming another Church of God splinter group. There are far too many of these already, as you are well aware. With this in mind here is the purpose of this letter.
Recently an issue has emerged within the Churches of God concerning buying and selling on the Sabbath – and more specifically going to restaurants on this day. Although most of the leaders in the Church believe this to be a minor point, it most assuredly is not. Quite frankly it may be the most important issue God’s people face today. We realize these words may sound strong but consider the profound impact the Sabbath has had on God’s people down through the ages. One only has to read the twentieth chapter of the book of Ezekiel to begin to understand how God’s people have routinely contaminated His Sabbath and how they have suffered horrible consequences for this defiance. God’s people were actually stripped of their freedom for profaning this day. Israel suffered unbelievable brutality at the hands of Assyria while Judah had their judgement delivered by Nebuchadnezzar and the Chaldeans. This happened in no small part because they polluted God’s Sabbath. Their defiance was born out of arrogance and God dealt with it forcefully. These great nations God supernaturally raised up actually thought they could keep the Sabbath according to the dictates of their own conscience. Does this sound familiar?
The captivity of both Israel and Judah can be directly linked to a cavalier attitude they had regarding a command that was designed to keep God’s people connected to Him. Today that attitude has emerged in His Church and is every bit as pervasive as it was over twenty five centuries ago. As a result, the Church today reflects what is arguably the most apathetic approach toward this holy time since the days of Nehemiah. Today the Sabbath is used by many of God’s people as a time to tie up loose ends. Many of them now buy groceries, pick up their laundry, do their banking, wash their cars, and yes, go to restaurants on this day. After all if it is ok to do one, why can’t you do the others? Additionally, ministers now advance convoluted human arguments in defense of their blatant disregard of God’s instruction concerning how this day should be kept. Listen carefully when they explain why it is acceptable with God to go into a worldly business and avail themselves of its products and services. This on a day when God specifically commanded His people to not go out of the community He had raised up.
At this point it is important to understand that God’s word is not silent on this subject. As a matter of fact it presents a cold warning to His people regarding this practice. Consider the following: when God first taught a great company of emancipated Israelite slaves about His Sabbath He specifically addressed the issue of food. When doing so He gave them three specific directives. First, He said that they were not to acquire food on His Sabbath. Second, they were not to prepare food on His Sabbath. And third, they were not to leave the camp on the Sabbath. He gave these instructions in order “to prove them whether they will walk in my law or no” (Ex. 16:4). It is ironic that in order to go to a restaurant on the Sabbath, one must violate all three of these directives. So now the obvious question is this: will you walk in His law or no?
Enclosed with this letter is a book titled A Sabbath Test which is published by a small Church of God Association located in Southern California. We believe this book provides great insight into this subject and contains a warning to God’s people that should not go unheeded. Furthermore, we are absolutely convinced that the words contained in this book are inspired by God Almighty and are so important at this particular time that failure to comply with them will result in God’s people finding themselves on the wrong end of “Jacob’s trouble.” This was the warning from Nehemiah to the Nobles of Judah so very long ago and once again it goes forth to the nobles of His people at the end time. We therefore appeal to you to read it prayerfully and to act on it courageously. Failure to do so could be catastrophic.
Blow the Trumpet
P.S. A copy of this letter and the enclosed book will be made available to every member of God’s Church worldwide.