[Brett] Well there was a point in my life where I had been seeking God's truth a little bit. I wondered, if there was more to it than I had been getting before in the Protestant churches I had been attending…
[Charles] I just think that when I started studying Christianity I realized that, wow! That there is so much misinformation about Christianity and what's in the Bible.
[Michael] I have noticed all positive changes in my life since God started working with me.
[Darris] Those of you who have been watching Beyond Today for several years, have come to understand and see that the message we have here is straight from the Bible. And, you have also come to understand - many of you, that the message that Beyond Today offers you is one that can change your life.
We are doing something different today on Beyond Today . On this episode we are going to talk to a few people who have had their lives changed and turned around for the better by listening to the message of Beyond Today and checking it out in the pages of their Bible. And coming to understand why it is that God is so important in their life, and why His Son, Jesus Christ, is the way to understanding the purpose for their life.
And you are also going to be brought to understand what can be the next step for you to take as you are watching this program. So stay with us, and we will show you how to "Live Beyond Today."
[Announcer] Join our host, Darris McNeely and his guests, as they help you understand your future on Beyond Today !
[Darris] Today, I want to highlight some of the fruit of what God is doing in the lives of our viewers.
We're going to talk to several individuals whose lives have been changed by the message we bring on Beyond Today . We would also like to tell you about the Church behind the work of Beyond Today and give you some free information about the United Church of God. I will tell you more about that later in the program.
Religious programs are all over television and the internet, but this program is unique. Beyond Today explains the deepest spiritual truths of the Bible. We preach the message of Jesus Christ and the Kingdom of God. We talk about God. We talk about the Bible. But we do this in a way that challenges what you've heard or thought about God and the Bible.
Many viewers write and they tell us this program is not like any other television ministry that they may watch. Here, we read what the Bible says and we believe it. We aim to practice what we preach. We eliminate human tradition that conflicts with God's truth. Here, we believe that God's Word - the Bible, lays a claim on our lives.
We believe the truth of God is a pearl of great price that is important to every one of us. And it is why we get out of bed each day, and why we come into this studio and do our jobs.
We believe God and we seek to walk with Him every day. In this world today, people are really walking away from God faster than ever. Our goal and our passion is to get people to turn around and to begin walking with God.
This passion, this passion has completely turned our lives upside down for the better. And that's what God can do, when you read the Bible, when you believe it, and you begin to live by its every word. This is what God did in my life, and the lives of many others who have been helped by this program.
Meet Brett. Brett started out as a Beyond Today viewer - perhaps like you. He was seeking greater meaning in his life.
[Brett] Well there was a point in my life where I had been…I had been seeking God's truth a little bit. I wondered, if there was more to it than I had been getting before in the Protestant churches I had been attending. And so, I finally just sat down with the computer one day and I went to Google, and I typed in "True Christianity." One of the first websites that came up was a UCG article that had those words: "True Christianity." So I read that article, and it clicked in my head for me. And then I started searching around the website a lot more, and I came across some Beyond Today programs.
The first one I remember watching was about Easter. They got right to the Bible, right to the point. You know, there wasn't a whole lot of extraneous story-time explanations. They really pulled out the Scriptures and made it very clear and evident of what the truth was.
[Darris] Brett then decided he needed to take another step to connect with the Church behind what he was reading. He took the big step to begin fellowshipping with others who believed what he was reading and studying from the Bible.
[Brett] A big moment when I decided to change the way my life had been going was when I saw one of the Beyond Today programs that explained, who was responsible for the crucifixion of Christ. You know that each of us because of our sin, because of our separation from God required that sacrifice as an atonement. And that really settled it in my mind and said, for something that powerful to happen - I need to respond to that. And God's giving me that opportunity now, and I simply felt I couldn't pass it up. Once I started studying the things that were presented, on the Beyond Today programs, it led me to certainly a lot of change. A lot of change in my life.
And at first I didn't feel like I would probably fit in well with the congregation of the Church, and finally, I felt like I was right to a point with God where I needed to find the support and the fellowship of the Church members. So I went to the section on the website where it says to "Find a Congregation" and I found the closest one, and just kind of showed up one Sabbath.
There's such a comfort and peace in my life knowing the truth, not having those questions unanswered, being assured of what God has in store for, not only us in His Church now, but for humanity going forward, in the future.
[Darris] Brett is like many watching this program. Perhaps like you. You identify yourself as a Christian. You believe in the Bible as God's Word. But do you really believe the Bible? Do you believe it enough in deep living faith to let God change your life? Do you believe it enough to let His Word challenge your long-held ideas about what it says?
You have opened your Bible. You have proven that man-made traditions are often counter to the simple truths of the Bible. But now what? What do you do? Well perhaps you have learned this through our teaching on Beyond Today and you have been convicted to change.
Is your faith based on what you have always been taught? Is it based on a charismatic minister or preacher who can give you soothing words, but falls short of telling you what God says about sin, righteousness and judgment?
Examine your belief and examine what we say here on Beyond Today . If we can both agree that the Bible is the Word of God then what we do, and how we live our life, must agree with this Book. Examine both and decide. That's really the heart of our challenge to you.
And that's God's challenge to you as well. He wants you to build a relationship with Him. God loves you and He wants you to live His way of life because He knows that it is the very best way to live. The question is, will you answer His call? And will you start to know your Creator, today?
As you build a relationship with God, you need the support of fellow believers. God tells us in the Bible to assemble together. God knows that a Christian journey is not something that you take all by yourself.
There are people who believe the message of the Bible and they live by it all around the world. These people meet together. They pray together, and they support each other. They are a family of believers in Jesus Christ.
And if you want to follow God and Jesus Christ and live by the words of the Bible, you need to be a part of a church that lives by God's Word. The United Church of God is behind the message of Beyond Today . Members, and pastors, and partners of the United Church of God make this program possible with their generous financial support.
If you've found Beyond Today useful in your daily walk with God then please, consider taking the next step to understand what's behind this program - a Church of believers dedicated to sharing the wonderful life-changing truths of the Bible.
To find out more about this work, you can read, This Is the United Church of God . Inside this booklet, you will find many resources that will help you study your Bible, and grow in God's way, and also to identify to become part of this movement.
The United Church of God has over 200 congregations across the United States and Canada. In Australia, we have congregations meeting in all major cities. And, we have pastors and congregations in many other countries around the world. Trained and dedicated ministers serve our members who are committed to God and to living the biblical truths.
Get your free copy of: This Is the United Church of God now online at BeyondtToday.tv , or request a free copy to be sent to your home by calling: 1-888-886-8632. That's 1-888-886-8632. You can also write to us at the address on your screen (Beyond Today, PO Box 541027, Cincinnati, OH 45254).
Brett took religion seriously. He actively sought God's truth. But not everyone makes religion a priority in their lives. In fact, some reject God for one reason or another. Perhaps it is something bad that happened in their lives. Perhaps even religion has become an obstacle in finding God.
We talked with Charles, who sensed there was something wrong with his church when he was young. His church was not preaching truth from the Bible, and it led Charles to believe there was no God.
[Charles] Well, I had little respect for religion as a kid, just because of the church that I was associated with. To be confirmed into this particular church or denomination, in around the seventh grade, one of the first things they started doing was showing the contradictions and the fallacies of the book of Genesis. I'm thinking well, "If, just logic tells you, well if the Bible can't be depended on, why would I continue to go to church?"
Actually, I would say I was a very firm atheist by the seventh grade.
[Darris] Charles' journey changed when he heard a message that challenged his assumptions. The message came straight from the Bible, told in a common sense manner that not only got his attention, but provoked him to a change in his life.
[Charles] Well my first introduction to start challenging my thoughts on that was I was listening to, a radio preacher who didn't believe in evolution. And he had a number of programs on evolution. I was just amazed that there was really somebody who didn't believe in evolution. So I just continued to listen to him based on the fact that I was… just out of entertainment. Finally, he started talking about prophecy. He mentioned that, many modern nations are mentioned in the Bible in prophecy. And so, that became a little challenging. And so I began to write for the literature and study that, and it was about a year-long transition when I finally was convinced that okay, there was a God.
Well there was an internal struggle because as I began to realize that there was a God who exists, a God of morals and values, I began to realize that okay, I can't just sit on this information. I am personally bound to make some changes in my life.
I just think that when I started studying Christianity I realized that, wow! That there is so much misinformation about Christianity and what's in the Bible. And I realize… that was a big challenge to me. Christmas for instance, I realize, okay. As I was starting to realize there was a God, I was starting to become more friendly with my Christian friends. But then I realized well, there are some things they don't understand about Christianity such as the origin of Christmas, the origin of Easter. And, so this created some challenges, both with my friends and my family.
I actually read an article by a minister in a magazine I was taking, and the title was: "Be you doers of the word and not only hearers." And that's when I began to realize, okay, so what if Christmas isn't really originally about the birth of Jesus Christ, so what if Easter comes from pagan origins, so what? But, the God of the Bible, the Creator, He is giving us a way of life to live. And I realize okay, I've got to make some changes. It's more than academic information. You've got to apply it to your life.
[Darris] Maybe you've been turned off by the lies religions tell. But you know what? You have to put it in perspective. You must never let a man come between you and your Creator. What really matters is there is one God, one truth, one way to live. And because there is a God who is bigger than all the failed religions around us, there is something for you to believe and do. No matter what men have done in the name of religion, all people have a responsibility to live faithfully in honor of God and Jesus Christ. Don't ever let your relationship with people interfere with your relationship with God. You have the obligation to come to a relationship with your Creator. He wants to know you. He wants you to know Him. Build a relationship with God, and start today.
As you build a relationship with God, you need the support of fellow believers.
To find out more about the United Church of God, please order today's free offer: This Is the United Church of God . You will find out more about who is behind Beyond Today , as well as how to meet with fellow believers in your area.
You can begin reading it online now at BeyondToday.tv . If you would like your own hard copy, you can also request it free right now by calling: 1-888-886-8632. That's, 1-888-886-8632. If you live outside of North America, you can also write us a letter with your request to the address on your screen (Beyond Today, PO Box 541027, Cincinnati, OH 45254).
When you request, This Is the United Church of God , we're also going to send you a free subscription to The Good News magazine . It will help you accelerate your Bible study as you prepare for the coming Kingdom of God. With it, you can gain insight into the Bible, and learn to use Scripture as a guide to the challenging issues you face in everyday life.
Call: 1-888-886-8632 or go online at BeyondToday.tv for, This Is the United Church of God and our magazine, The Good News .
Brett was seeking. Charles came up against truths that he couldn't refute. We also met Mike. Maybe, Mike is like you.
You have very hectic lives. You're too busy for religion. You might believe in God, but you haven't made the decision to put Him first in your life. Well, Mike was just like that. He believed in God, but he hadn't responded to God's truth yet. But thankfully, sometimes God finds us. He puts us in a place where we can discover the "pearl of great price" - His truth - and make a choice in our lives.
[Michael] I was in college when I got called. And I came to a point where I wanted it no more. I was depressed in life, I would drink all the time, and it was just like a never-ending circle. I was just going in circles and I said, there has to be more than this. And I understood that Christ will return and I wanted to know the truth. But, I didn't know how so I just started praying to God: Can you open my mind? Are you real? And I just came to like a standstill in my life. It wasn't getting any better, the alcohol wouldn't treat it…anything. So I knew I had to search for God, and God called me.
I used to work with a gentleman that was different. His example really brought me into the Church. Over a process of a year of getting to know him, things were just different. Different from everybody I worked with. From his marriage, the way he handled situations at work, and just him in general, you know, he was so patient. I wondered what was different about him. So he told me it was his religion, what he believed in. And from there, I was curious. Cause I was already in my life, I was at a standstill. I wanted to know about God so, I started asking him questions.
And, we just started talking at work about different things, and everything sounded interesting. So he said, come over to my house for a Bible study. And we would have weekly Bible studies, about once a week. For an hour long, about different topics and we would just talk. And that's how I first came in contact with the Church. And, he then directed me to booklets and the Church website.
He said that, this is between you and God and he said, it wasn't him. He said, this is the answer right here. I am going to show you the answer. I am going to show you what the Scripture says, and you have to go from there. So that's what I would just take and that really attracted me. He didn't want to lord over me or convert me. He allowed God to do that.
[Darris] We asked Mike what he heard, or read, that made him realize that he had to make a change. Here is what he said:
[Michael] I would work every other Sabbath, and my job wouldn't let me have every Sabbath off. So while I would work I would listen to sermons online, on my phone, and I just knew that this was wrong - working on the Sabbath. So I had to make a choice. I came to a fork in the road. Do I keep God's law and listen to what He says, or do I try to have one foot in the world and one foot there. And it just wasn't working for me. I came to a wall. Like a spiritual wall. I couldn't grow anymore, and that was God telling me that I had to make a choice. That I had to choose this or not.
I got encouragement from reading the booklets that explained the Bible. Because reading the Bible just straight through didn't help me. But the booklets that I read helped me so much. And one booklet that explained this whole process to me was Transforming Your Life . That booklet summed up this whole calling, this whole action that God is doing with mankind. And that helped me through everything.
So with prayer and talking to my pastor, I made the choice that I am ready for baptism, that I am ready to start counseling for baptism. And that's what I did. We started counseling and over five months, a period of five months, I got baptized.
[Darris] Real people come to such a moment and realize they must act. Are you at that point right now?
God may be calling you to a relationship unlike any you have had to this point. A relationship with your Creator - the One that runs the universe. You can know why you were born and the purpose God offers you, eternal life in His Kingdom. It is not something too far away or something too big to understand. You are hearing about it right now as you watch Beyond Today and read our study aids and magazines.
A calling from God should not be taken lightly. It's a real turning point in your life.
The religion we discuss on Beyond Today is true religion - straight from your Bible. We are not interested in tradition. We are not interested in human ideas about the Bible. Frankly, what has been added and misrepresented about the Bible through the ages has contributed to the confusion and the hostility about the Word.
Living beyond today moves you to change your life. It inspires you to want to be a better person, a better husband, wife or parent. It will show you how to live at peace with yourself and other people. It will reveal to you a way of life that really brings joy and contentment.
Scripture shows you why you were born. In the midst of a crazy and often confused world, living and thinking Beyond Today will give your life meaning and purpose.
God's Word will lead you to understand God as a Father and His Son, Jesus Christ as your Savior and your Elder Brother. It will show you that God desires to call you one of His children. He wants a relationship with you based on trust, obedience and love - a deeper love than we can imagine. God offers to work in you a spiritual work that can transform your life into one that connects with Him. And that is what living beyond today is all about!
Living beyond today is about connecting with God, the Creator of life. Your life is about yielding to Him, asking for His divine help to live the life that He shows from the Bible - one that leads to eternal life. And that in the end is what you really want to understand. You want to understand how to get on the road that leads to eternal life.
And that's our core message on Beyond Today . Beyond Today is about helping you understand how to live successfully now - without the baggage that burdens and weighs our lives down. What we bring in every program teaches you from the Bible the knowledge of eternal life. You may watch each week and consider us your go-to source for straight teaching coming right out of the Bible. And you have come to trust the message that we bring to you on Beyond Today .
Prove whether what we say really works. In the Bible, God says in the Psalms to "taste and see" whether what His Word says is good (Psalm:34:8). Take God's Word, live it and prove it. If you don't, then all you have done is listen to another religious show. It is time that you decide about God - whether He "Is." And whether His Word means what it says, and whether His Word - this Bible - has a claim on your life.
We challenge you to do something with what you are hearing!
Now, you have heard this message before? Perhaps from an earlier moment in your life, perhaps as a child in a church where you grew up? You know what the Bible says about the future, you've heard the message about the coming Kingdom of God right here on this earth.
You may know the folly and the emptiness that is behind Christmas, and Easter and all the other pagan holidays that people want to celebrate. And you've even begun to celebrate them yourself. Maybe to appease someone in your life or because it just seems convenient - everyone else is doing it. But deep down, you know God is not really there. And there's still something empty.
You know what the Bible says. You know the teachings of mainstream churches don't really square with the teachings from this Book.
But you have allowed yourself to drift and to neglect the words of eternal life. And the everyday cares of life, making a living and family and everything else has come in, and it has brought a groggy approach to your life. But, you are grasping at a life. You are trying hard at success apart from God and His truth. But you know, something is missing. Every time you think you get ahead, something happens. Something caused you to realize that there is really a big hole in your life, and that something is missing.
It is time you return to the right path - the true path of God's way. You know what you have been hearing on this program is true. You know that what we say in the Beyond Today and what is available through the United Church of God reflects God's Word. Here you will find a committed fellowship of believers - men and women who see the hope of God's coming Kingdom as the answer to the great questions of life: Who is God? What is His purpose? What is man and what is his purpose? These are the great questions, the burning questions that have answers that you can understand, and you can have that meaning right now in your life.
It is a time now, in your life, for choosing for answers.
Don't forget to order your free copy of, This Is the United Church of God . God is calling you to a life of joy and growth. Our study aid can show you how you can connect with other people just like you - people God is calling to change their lives for the better.
You'll also receive a subscription to our free magazine, The Good News . It will help you make sense of the world around you through the lens of biblical truth.
And it will also help in your Bible study, with in-depth articles that explain some of the Bible's most challenging scriptures.
Read This Is the United Church of God and The Good News right now online at BeyondToday.tv , or request a free copy to be sent to your home. You can call: 1-888-886-8632. Again, that's 1-888-886-8632. You can also write to us at the address on your screen (Beyond Today, PO Box 541027, Cincinnati, OH 45254).
God is showing you that He wants to be a part of your life. What's keeping you from responding? Are you seeking like Brett? Have you been burned by religion like Charles? Are you not sure where to start or how you can take God more seriously, like Mike?
God may be calling you, right now, through the good news of the Kingdom of God that we have shown you in your Bible.
Write to us and we can put you in touch with a minister. Tell them your story, and ask about how you can build a deeper relationship with God and Jesus Christ. A relationship that helps you make the decisions that will forever impact your life.
This movement is bigger than just one program. It is part of the message of the coming Kingdom of God. Bigger than anything you have ever imagined.
Thanks for watching. Please join us in praying, "Thy Kingdom come." For Beyond Today , I'm Darris McNeely.
[Announcer] For the free literature offered on today's program, go online to BeyondToday.tv . Please join us again next week on Beyond Today !