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Church, Scattering of

Go to Bible verses for: Church, Scattering of

Unity and Division (Part Two): Who Scattered the Church?

CGG Weekly by David C. Grabbe

Would a God of unity scatter His own church? Or was it the work of Satan? The conclusion of many impugns God's sovereignty and exempts them from responsibility.

What Is the Church's Work Today (Part 2)

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh reiterates that the easiest part of God's work is the preaching the Gospel to the world- a task mechanically carried out as the church deteriorated from within. Much more demanding is the feeding of the flock, producing the kind of faith an. . .

What Is the Church's Work Today (Part 3)

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh reiterates that biblical history substantiates that God does not always have the church perform the same functions continually, but sometimes drastically alters the course according to needs and conditions. The perceived detours are necessa. . .

God's Sovereignty and the Church's Condition (Part Two)

'Personal' from John W. Ritenbaugh

Having shown that God is involved in world affairs, John Ritenbaugh concludes by showing that God's hand was definitely involved in the scattering of the church. Our reaction needs to be positive: that, if He felt it needed to be done, we should respond by. . .

What Is the Church's Work Today (Part 1)

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh provides the rationale of this phase of the church's work- what and why the Church of the Great God is doing what it is doing. In this time of scattering, God is testing our loyalty to Him, correcting deficiencies that will keep us out of H. . .

Jesus Christ, the Head of the Church

Sermonette by David C. Grabbe

David Grabbe reminds us that, for the past 25 years, the highest priority of the Church of the Great God has not been the preaching of the Gospel to the world, but the feeding of the flock. If we lose sight that Jesus Christ is the head of the Church, we w. . .

God's Sovereignty and the Church's Condition (Part One)

'Personal' from John W. Ritenbaugh

How involved in man's affairs is God? Is He merely reactive, or does He actively participate—even cause events and circumstances? John Ritenbaugh argues that God is the Prime Mover in our lives and in world events.

Revelation 10 and the Church's History

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh explains the seven thunders and the little book of Revelation 10. This chapter serves as an inset, not following the time sequence of Revelation, but explaining in detail events necessary to understand more fully what is happening within it. . .

The Seven Churches: Laodicea

Bible Study by Staff

The church of the Laodiceans is today's prevalent attitude. Is there hope? Can a Laodicean be in God's Kingdom?

Scattering and Gathering: Images of History and Prophecy (Part Two)

'Prophecy Watch' by Charles Whitaker

Biblical prophecy shows God scattering His people as a punishment for their sins against Him. During the end time, it appears He will scatter them into small fragments, perhaps even down to individuals alone. Charles Whitaker studies the primarily Hebrew w. . .

The Source of Church Characteristics (Part One)

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh, clarifying our worldview with respect to the Israel of God (or the Church) in the context of eschatological (that is, end times) events, declares that our vision of our calling as well as our level of responsibility before the imploding of. . .

Will the Church of God Be Thrown Down? (Part Two)

CGG Weekly by David C. Grabbe

The predominate focus of Matthew 24:2 is on the physical Temple and its environs. Jesus Christ's words that "not one stone shall be left here upon another" has already had one physical fulfillment in the destruction of the Temple and Jerusalem in AD 70. ... . .

A Time To Scatter

Sermonette by David C. Grabbe

David Grabbe, cuing in on Ecclesiastes 3:1-3, reminds us that God has designed sequential seasons in which various events occur as a part of a long-term plan. God plans the season; we only get to choose whether and how to respond. There is a time to gather. . .

Is There a True Church?

'Personal' from John W. Ritenbaugh

With many "churches of God" around the world claiming to be part of or even the only church of God, the question "Is There a True Church?" is a pertinent one. John Ritenbaugh examines, not their claims, but what the Bible reveals about the makeup of God's . . .

Principles of Church Leadership

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by Richard T. Ritenbaugh

Richard Ritenbaugh, reflecting that 30 years have passed since the death of Herbert W. Armstrong, and 24 years since the founding of the Church of the Great God, marvels that the greater church of God continues to scatter over 400 separate organizational s. . .

The Seven Churches: Summary

Bible Study by Staff

The seven churches exist in the end time, but is there hope for a bright future? What will happen next in the course of events? Will the church—now scattered—come back together?

The Seventh Thunder

CGG Weekly by David C. Grabbe

In Revelation 10:3-4, John tells of seven thunders—seven distinct, sequential reverberations of God's message to mankind. The seventh thunder is sounding now.

A Search for Identity

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh, reflecting upon the breakup of our former fellowship into hundreds of pieces, examines the prospects for future unity. God gave His approval for the destruction of our prior fellowship into myriad splinter groups, allowing heresies to emer. . .

What Is the Work of God Now? (Part 3)

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh admonishes the greater church of God that we make a conscious effort to feed the flock (devoting more effort, time, energy, and money than for preaching the Gospel as a witness for the world) until we get ourselves straightened out first. T. . .

What Is the Work of God Now? (Part 2)

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh takes issue with the popularly held notion that preaching the Gospel to the world as a witness is the sole identifying mark of God's church. There is a vast difference between "preaching the Gospel to the world" and "making d. . .

The Messenger of Christ

Sermon/Bible Study by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh gives his perception of Herbert W. Armstrong, suggesting that Mr. Armstrong was single-minded about preaching the Gospel, sometimes without financial savvy. It is possible that for many Herbert Armstrong had become an icon. The scattering w. . .

His Eye is On the Sparrow (Part One)

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh, cuing in on three scriptures, Psalm 11:3-5, Luke 12:7, and Philippians 4:19, reflects on a frightening earthquake in 1971, in which he realized that he was in no way in control of the alarming situation, a relentless shaking that threatene. . .

What Does God Really Want? (Part 1)

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh focuses upon the atmosphere of disorder which has emerged in the greater church of God, caused by individuals (ministry and lay members alike), obsessed with the urge to change doctrine, convinced that God was too weak to control Herbert W.. . .

Back to the First Century (Part One)

Commentary by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh, reminding us to take God's words seriously, cautions that all His words have great depth, having far more applications than appear on the surface. His word unfolds in layers, like the peeling back of an onion skin. After the upheaval and d. . .

Babel: Confusing Wisdom and Rebellion

CGG Weekly by David C. Grabbe

After the Flood, the people grew suspicious of God. Their natural inclination was to defend against another act of God rather than make peace with Him.

The Handwriting Is on the Wall (1996)

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

In this keynote message of the 1996 Feast of Tabernacles, John Ritenbaugh focuses upon the causes of the atomizing of the greater church of God into very small particles. Almighty God, as a means of mercifully disciplining and chastening His faithless chil. . .

The Whirlpool of War

Article by John O. Reid (1930-2016)

John Reid, a veteran of the Korean war, knows the horrors of war. We are in a spiritual war right now, and it will only become hotter as we near the end!

What Is the Work of God Now? (Part 1)

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

The preaching the gospel to the world is at best the beginning of a complex process of creating disciples through steady feeding and encouragement to overcome.

Globalism (Part Six): Tide and Countertide

'Prophecy Watch' by Charles Whitaker

Globalism has an equal and opposite counterpart: tribalism. Charles Whitaker explains what tribalism is and how it affects the world and the church.

A Distant Reflection

'Prophecy Watch' by Richard T. Ritenbaugh

George Santayana's famous quotation—"Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it"—applies equally well to the church of God. Richard Ritenbaugh compares the history of the early church with the events and trends being exhibite. . .

Worshipping the Temple (Part One)

CGG Weekly by David C. Grabbe

Over the last two decades, we have witnessed the scattering of the church of God from one corporate organization into hundreds. ...

Unity (Part 1): God and HWA

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

In this lead-off sermon of the 1999 Feast of Tabernacles, John Ritenbaugh draws an instructive though disturbing parallel between the warning given to Belshazzar and the warning given to the greater church of God. A major contributory cause in the splittin. . .

Ecclesiastes Resumed (Part Seven)

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh, claiming that one major reason people find Ecclesiastes to be pessimistic is that much of life also contains negativity, suggests that Solomon, who was born with a silver spoon in his mouth, found much of life discouraging, disappointing, . . .

Who Was Herbert W. Armstrong?

Sermon/Bible Study by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh shares the significance of Herbert W. Armstrong's role in the church. Increasingly, some fail to realize Herbert Armstrong's stabilizing role in God's church. The scattering we have experienced since his death has been a blessing from God, . . .

Ecclesiastes Resumed (Part Twenty-One)

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh, continuing his exposition on Ecclesiastes, focuses on three interrelated terms: paradox (something contrary to expectation), conundrum (a riddle), and wisdom (skill in arts, such as Bezalel and Oholiab who were gifted in a specific skill&m. . .

The Power of the Holy People

CGG Weekly by David C. Grabbe

Are the "holy people" in Daniel 12:7 actually the church of God? If so, what is the power of the church that is completely shattered right before the end?

CGG Anniversary: Summary and Thank You

Sermonette by John W. Ritenbaugh

On this eleventh anniversary of the Church of the Great God, John Ritenbaugh reflects upon the expectations, the accomplishments, and the prospects for the future of our part of God's work, observing that things have not exactly turned out the way we thoug. . .

Eating: How Good It Is! (Part Seven)

'Personal' from John W. Ritenbaugh

Our physical bodies, like the walled cities of ancient times, has a defense system to keep out invaders. Spiritually, how well do we maintain our defenses against error and contamination? John Ritenbaugh urges us to listen diligently to God's Word for true. . .

Avoiding Superficiality

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

Success in spiritual things does not consist in growing large and powerful, but humbly living by faith, overcoming, and yielding to God's shaping power.

Fully Accepting God's Sovereignty (Part 1)

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh declares that God has carefully called each individual member, gifting each one differently, but with the ultimate function of edifying the body. We are mandated to live by faith, being given trials of faith in order to chisel our character. . .

Unity (Part 3): Ephesians 4 (A)

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh reiterates that God alone chooses the servants through whom He works His will. Sometimes the rationale God uses for selecting His vessels defies worldly wisdom. The major reason for the horrendous split of the greater church of God was the . . .

Faith and the Calendar (Part 2)

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh reiterates that the real issue in the calendar controversy is not mathematical or astronomical computations, but faith in God's sovereignty, His providence, His right to assign responsibility, and His capability of maintaining an oversight . . .

Examine and Come Out

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh insists that we must be aware of our awesome status as a unique, called-out, chosen, royal priesthood—teachers of a way of life and builders of bridges between people and God. Because God owns us, we differ from the rest of the people. . .

United With Whom?

CGG Weekly by David C. Grabbe

At times the paradox is painful, but it is nevertheless true. True Christians "receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon [us]" (Acts 1:8), yet even with that divine power there is much that we would like to do but cannot. ...

First Things First (Part One): Access to God

CGG Weekly by David C. Grabbe

As the Worldwide Church of God fragmented in the early 1990s, and various smaller organizations were formed to hold fast to the original doctrines, it was common for many of the newly formed churches to continue almost as if nothing had changed. ...

The Handwriting Is On the Wall (Part Two) (2007)

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh reiterates that we are to follow Abraham and Sarah's example of relying on God's guidance, learning to trust in the wisdom of Almighty God rather than the world. In order to avoid strife, Abraham allowed his forward nephew Lot first choice.. . .

March 12, 2005: One Year Later

CGG Weekly by David C. Grabbe

Last Sunday marked the one-year anniversary of the horrific church shooting in Brookfield, Wisconsin. On that fateful day, Terry Ratzmann entered the rented, hotel meeting room and opened fire with a semiautomatic pistol. A minute later, 22 rounds had been. . .

Maintaining Good Health (Part 12)

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

God has often used micro metaphors to illustrate macro events. For example, in Isaiah 1:4-6, God compares the whole nation of Israel to a sick patient with an incurable disease, signalling impending captivity. The church has been alternately compared to a . . .

The Beatitudes, Part One: The Sermon on the Mount

'Personal' from John W. Ritenbaugh

The Sermon on the Mount is as vitally important to us today as it was when Christ preached it. It contains within it the very way we are to conduct our lives as God's representatives on this earth. How well are we following what Christ taught?

Trends in Global Religion

'Prophecy Watch' by Richard T. Ritenbaugh

Ron Sellers, a religious trend watcher, sees great instability in world religion, and it is mirrored in God's church. Richard Ritenbaugh shows how this dovetails with Bible prophecy of the end time.

What Is the Work of God Now? (Part 4)

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh, after a thorough analysis of the seven churches in Revelation 2 and 3, concludes that the seven conditions described (all having a common denominator an admonition to hold fast to something once given, but slipping away- namely the faith o. . .

Intimacy with Christ (Part 2)

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh emphasizes that we ought to be devoting considerable time getting to know our prospective bridegroom, like the Apostle Paul desiring to conform to Christ in every way before the marriage. This challenge becomes extremely complicated because. . .

The Shepherd's Guidance (Part One)

CGG Weekly by David C. Grabbe

A significant title of Jesus Christ is "the Good Shepherd" (John 10:11, 14), and it is a perfect description for what He does in personally knowing and caring for His sheep. ...

The Impossible Metric

CGG Weekly by David C. Grabbe

Unlike God, "who inhabits eternity" (Isaiah 57:15), we mortals have a limited existence. Because of our finite time, we tend to view things through the lens of immediacy. ...

The Importance of Doctrine

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

In this sobering sermon, John Ritenbaugh warns of the consequences of fellowshipping outside of God's called-out church. People who suppose they are supplementing their spiritual diet with a poisonous blend of heresy and lawlessness risk losing their ident. . .

Reconciliation and Unity

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh stresses that unless the splinters of the greater church of God repair their mangled relationships with the Almighty, recoupling will be impossible. A major contributory factor in the scattering is the deceitful heart of man (Jeremiah 17:9). . .

Preparing the Bride

Booklet by John W. Ritenbaugh

A Statement of Purpose and Beliefs of the Church of the Great God

Is Ignorance Truly Bliss?

Sermonette by David C. Grabbe

David Grabbe, examining the saying, "ignorance is bliss," implying that a measure of peace may come to us if we do not know something that might be disturbing, cautions us that this ignorance is dangerous when it comes to the spiritual preparatio. . .

'How Long, O Lord?'

CGG Weekly by David C. Grabbe

Decades after the death of Herbert Armstrong, only a small percentage of the former membership of the WCG can be found following shepherds who have held onto the core doctrines of the church of God. Even now the law of entropy is proved, as the splintering. . .

Unity (Part 2): God's Pattern of Leadership

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh, insisting that God is not the author of confusion, affirms that God, throughout the scriptures, has used a consistent pattern of appointing leaders over His called-out ones. God has invariably chosen one individual, working with him until . . .

The Wisdom of Men and Faith

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh asserts that the pressures and conflicts that the church has undergone is part of a larger Zeitgeist (spirit of the time) that has embroiled institutions religious and political institutions worldwide. The mindset reflects (and is a functio. . .

Ecclesiastes and Christian Living (Part Three): Time

'Personal' from John W. Ritenbaugh

Solomon reveals that God is solidly in control of time. Knowing that God is sovereign over time should fill us with faith in God's workmanship.

The Handwriting Is On the Wall (Part One) (2007)

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

In this keynote address of the 2007 Feast of Tabernacles, John Ritenbaugh, focusing on Abraham's pattern of life, answers the question, 'Why is the Church of the Great God doing what it is doing at this time?' Abraham and Sarah's life of faith is the patte. . .

Hebrews: A Message for Today

Feast of Tabernacles Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

The book of Hebrews provides reasons to recapture flagging zeal, focusing on the reason for our hope and faith, establishing Christ's credentials.

What Does God Really Want? (Part 2)

Sermon by John W. Ritenbaugh

John Ritenbaugh emphasizes that commandment breaking is what has scatterred the greater church of God. We have allowed the self-assured Laodicean mindset (with its ignorance and spiritual blindness) to deter us from overcoming and law keeping. In the parab. . .

In the Grip of Distrust

'Personal' from John W. Ritenbaugh

Most of us are aware of a phenomenon that too often takes place within the church of God. It should not happen, but it does. This phenomenon is that if an attitude or trend begins to develop in the world, we can expect that it will soon enter the church. W. . .


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