Letters From Our Readers - January/February 2014

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Letters From Our Readers - January/February 2014

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"Are You Afraid of Commitment?"

You make it sound so easy in your article "Are You Afraid of Commitment?"—"Pray to God and He will make it possible for you to do whatever you want with His blessing." But sometimes commitment comes at a cost. From when I first went to stage at nine years old, I dreamed of a career in theatre. At 29 years old it was beginning to open up for me. Producers were actually calling me to offer me roles, and I was invited to join the top theatre group in the region. But just when it seemed that my dream could be fulfilled I stumbled on evidence, in the supernaturally accurate fulfillment of Daniel's prophecies, that the God of the Bible is real.

That led to the understanding that God's commandments should be obeyed, all 10 of them, and that the vast majority of people who call themselves Christian routinely disobey the Fourth Commandment to observe the seventh-day Sabbath. So I had to choose to either go my way or go God's way.

Since then I've slipped and fallen far too many times in my walk with God, and I've often missed the theatre too, but almost 40 years on I still have no doubt that I made the right decision. But that commitment did come at a cost. God does not always make it possible for us to do whatever we want to do with His blessing. Sometimes we have to choose between God's way and our own.

Reader from Queensland, Australia

Our staff was very impressed with your letter, and we couldn't agree more that commitment comes with a cost. The article did not intend to imply otherwise, but was not focusing on that aspect. Jesus Christ told us to sit down and count the cost of discipleship (Luke 14:26-33 Luke 14:26-33 [26] If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brothers, and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple. [27] And whoever does not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple. [28] For which of you, intending to build a tower, sits not down first, and counts the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it? [29] Lest haply, after he has laid the foundation, and is not able to finish it, all that behold it begin to mock him, [30] Saying, This man began to build, and was not able to finish. [31] Or what king, going to make war against another king, sits not down first, and consults whether he be able with ten thousand to meet him that comes against him with twenty thousand? [32] Or else, while the other is yet a great way off, he sends an ambassador, and desires conditions of peace. [33] So likewise, whoever he be of you that forsakes not all that he has, he cannot be my disciple.
American King James Version×
). But God's blessing is worth the cost. He will reward us in many ways in this life and ultimately in the resurrection of the just.

Bible Study Course

Your magazines and the Bible Study Course are marvelous and biblical. I always look forward to receiving them and read them from cover to cover. I will be very sad when I come to the end of your study course. Please do another!

Mrs. E.B., Swindon, England

The Bible Study Course is truly enlightening. I have a BA degree in theology-religious studies and find your course more challenging and enjoyable than my university studies. I am also a Church of England reader and have used articles from The Good News magazine as the basis for many sermons over the last 20 years. Please send the next lesson ASAP.

M.T., Mitcham, England

The Good News

I am 60 years old. An older lady in the next town gave me four copies of your magazine The Good News. I enjoyed them immensely and recognize the magazine as a reliable source of truth, understanding and information for today's world. It is my hope that I may be placed on your mailing list. Thank you for your service for the glory of the Lord and may God bless all of your endeavours in the future for the salvation of this lost world.

M.S., Marshfield, Missouri

I don't know who first gave you my address, but I will be forever grateful for all the great information you have provided. You have helped me understand the Bible way beyond anything I ever learned previously!

J.S., Burnsville, Minnesota

Please accept my gratitude for your Good News magazine. It is such a blessing in my life. It gives me understanding, encouragement and hope—and is a substantial help in drawing closer to God. My son has sent me written thanks for the booklets I have sent him [in prison]. He expressed gratitude for the benefits he's received and has encouraged me to send more. Perhaps these booklets will minister to more men than just my son. Thank you for all the Bible-based help you give me.

C.B., Hartsell, Connecticut

Thank you very much for sending me The Good News. It is such a blessing to receive knowledge and understanding of God's Word and His plan for us, especially considering my incarceration. Now when my fellow prisoners come to me and say, "Have you heard the bad news about this or that," I simply reply, "No I haven't, but have you read The Good News?"

A.D., Tennessee Colony, Texas

Thank you very much for the truly wonderful Good News magazines you've been sending me through the years. The articles are certainly inspiring, insightful, captivating and solidly Bible-based. Please remember that the United Church of God and The Good News team are always in my prayers, even as you keep shining your light for Christ and His glorious Kingdom through this tremendous ministry. Thank you for making that difference for God in many lives everywhere.

B.J., Malaysia

Letters from Australia

Thank you for sending me the booklet What Happens After Death? My sister is a nurse, and she has a very hard time dealing with death and helping family and friends to deal with it. It really helped her.

Reader from New South Wales

Thank you for the materials that you have sent me. I have learned so much about the Bible by simply reading your publications and referring back to the Scriptures. God is good. He has led me to your ministry, and I cannot thank Him enough. Daily I see how amazing God is and His goodness and care for everyone who believes and accepts Him.

Reader from New South Wales

Please accept my small contribution for the many magazines you have so selflessly sent. I have been a Christian for many years, and your magazines have taught me so much in my walk with our Lord. Keep up the good work, and many thanks for your guidance.

Reader from New South Wales

Letters from Canada

This letter is in appreciation for your thoughtful, scholarly, yet down-to-earth approach to the Bible and faith and prophecy matters. I enclose this (overdue) donation.

Reader from Ontario

Thank you very much for The Good News magazine which you are sending me. I am very much grateful. Enclosed is a cheque as a gift. May God bless your ministry always.

Reader from British Columbia

About the Sabbath

I wish to talk about your Church and the teachings you believe. I belong to the United Methodist Church. Our pastor also receives The Good News and has told me in our discussions that most of your teachings are spot on. I've asked him how, with all the different denominations in the world today, can we know which one is right when they all worship God and His Son? He says that all perceive the teachings of the Bible differently.

He doesn't have a problem if people want to celebrate the different annual biblical festivals, but doesn't believe we should be keeping the Sabbath. I was raised as a Lutheran (Missouri Synod) before becoming a Methodist years later. The only teaching I've known on the Sabbath is that it was changed at Pentecost. I'm kind of confused on this and the arguments for and against it.

B.D., Cedar Springs, Michigan

We can only suggest that you request and prayerfully study our free booklets Sunset to Sunset: God's Sabbath Rest, The Church Jesus Built and The New Covenant: Does It Abolish God's Law? All three booklets address the issues you raise. If you have specific questions, one of our letter-answering staff will be glad to address them. You may also wish to reread the first letter above.

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