Sabbath, July 14, Mr. Armstrong flew to TULSA, Oklahoma, to deliver the Sabbath sermon. He cleared up a few points in regard to the January 3rd assault of the State of California against the Worldwide Church of God.
He said it is time we in God's Church get straight in our minds WHO IS LORD — CAESAR OR CHRIST?
The GOVERNMENT OF GOD once ruled this entire earth, he said. God had set a super archangel on the throne over the entire earth. This was the Cherub LUCIFER, one of two or three of the most powerful and mighty super angels God could, or ever did create. Isaiah 14:12-14 was quoted, showing Lucifer's throne was beneath the clouds, on the earth, and that he rebelled and attempted to ascend and swoop down on God's throne in heaven, to take over even as the state of California swooped down January 3rd on God's present earthly headquarters to try to take over.
This super-angel Lucifer had been PERFECT in all his ways from the day God created Him (Ezek. 28:14-15) until rebellion and iniquity were found in him. He became Satan, the arch-enemy of GOD!
Lucifer's name was changed to Satan.
After this angelic rebellion, God created the first HUMANS — in God's own likeness — form and shape. God now purposed to REPRODUCE HIMSELF through humans, formed from the physical matter of the earth.
God instructed Adam and Eve before He allowed Satan to contact them. Adam could have made the CHOICE to OBEY the GOVERNMENT OF GOD and replace the dethroned Lucifer on the throne of the entire earth. But Satan, enemy of the GOVERNMENT OF GOD, then got to Adam through his wife Eve, and Adam turned to rebellion against GOD'S GOVERNMENT.
God, thereupon, drove Adam and Eve out of the Garden of Eden, and barred humanity from entrance or access to God or His Holy Spirit.
In effect, God said, "You have made the choice — for all humanity which shall be born from you. You have rejected knowledge from me. You have taken to yourself the KNOWLEDGE of good and evil. You have rejected my government. You have rejected me as your GOD. Therefore GO, devise your KNOWLEDGE, form your own religions, your own GOVERNMENTS — in all of which SATAN will have access to sway and lead you into HIS WAYS! I sentence you and your posterity — all humanity — to be CUT OFF from access to me for 6,000 years; all except the very FEW I shall specially call to prepare for MY OWN KINGDOM which shall be set up after 6,000 years,"
God had explained and laid out His 7,000 year MASTER PLAN for REPRODUCING HIMSELF through humanity.
This 7,000 year MASTER PLAN is to develop the KINGDOM OF GOD — GOD'S GOVERNMENT OVER ALL THE EARTH! It will accomplish what the angels failed to do.
SO — we have on earth still today — as we approach VERY NEAR to the end of the 6,000 years, many various conflicting and warring GOVERNMENTS OF MAY, all swayed by Satan!
These GOVERNMENTS OF MAN have always fought against the GOVERNMENT OF GOD — even as the State of California did on January 3rd.
God's physical creation of MAN began with Adam. His SPIRITUAL creation of MAN began with JESUS CHRIST, the SECOND ADAM! Jesus came ANNOUNCING His worldwide KINGDOM OF GOD. When Jesus was on earth, Jerusalem and the whole land of Judea was part of the ROMAN EMPIRE.
Although the Romans kept one or more garrisons of soldiers, under a Governor or local Judean king, virtually all details of the ROMAN GOVERNMENT over Judea were delegated to the Pharisees and Sadducees. The Romans made the Jews GOVERN THEMSELVES, and thus bear the major COST of government over the area. The Sadducees and Pharisees, therefore, were in fact agents of the Roman civil GOVERNMENT.
They PERSECUTED JESUS continually. He came announcing the future establishment of the GOVERNMENT OF GOD once again on earth, under the future KINGDOM OF GOD. But the Pharisees and Sadducees were HOSTILE to that.
They constantly sought to KILL Jesus.
Jesus had planned with GOD the Father before the world existed to give His life — shed His life-blood — for the sins of the world. But, before His pre-planned time had come, did Jesus give in meekly to those hostile to the GOVERNMENT OF GOD?
Notice: "Therefore they (civil government officers) sought again to take him, but he escaped out of their hand" (John 10: 39). This had happened more than once.
Jesus came representing the KINGDOM OF GOD, not merely as a single private person.
Did He just "cave in," as some misguided former ministers had said we should, and meekly turn the other cheek to these Roman government authorities?
Let's get this STRAIGHT. Even though MA-Y'S GOVERNMENT has its laws, God does NOT teach us that under all circumstances we must obey. I an very well aware of the teaching in Matthew 13: "Let every soul BE SUBJECT UNTO the higher powers." But "be subject unto" does not necessarily mean "OBEY." A conscientious objector in time of war may refuse to OBEY the government's draft into military service, and still "BE SUBJECT UNTO" THE GOVERNMENT OF MAN over him, by submitting to whatever PENALTY the government imposes.
When Peter and John had been thrown into prison overnight, and were sternly COMMANDED by government officials NOT to preach in Jesus' name any further, Peter said "We shall OBEY GOD RATHER THAN MAN!"
Again, WHO is LORD, Caesar or CHRIST?
Notice how Jesus replied to the Pharisees and scribes — acting as Roman GOVERNMENT authorities: "Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites... WOE unto you blind guides ...ye FOOLS and blind...Ye blind guides ... for ye are like whited sepulchers... Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?" (Matt.23:15-33). That is stronger language than I have used against California state officials!
As an INDIVIDUAL, each of us must be subject to the higher powers, even though a law of government may be wrong in our own sight. But remember, MAN'S GOVERNMENT has been altogether swayed by SATAN.
In the struggle with the Government of MAN, in the assault of the State of California, remember, "We wrestle NOT against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places" '(Eph. 6:12).
REMEMBER THIS: The massive attack of the State of California action against us was not an action ENFORCING ANY LAW! We had BROKEN NO LAW. They did not come with a charge of breaking any specific law! They came with a COURT ORDER, ILLEGALLY MADE, FOR A "RECEIVER" TO TAKE POSSESSION OF THE CHURCH, THE COLLEGE, AND THE FOUNDATION, AND RUN THEM. The first thins the Receiver did was to "FIRE" ME and Mr. Rader. Only we simply refused to BE "I fired"!
They did not come to charge us with breaking any law, or to punish us for lawbreaking — they came to TAKE POSSESSION OF THE PROPERTY OF THE GOVERNMENT OF GOD — supposedly to sell it and pocket the proceeds! We had broken no law! THEY HAD!
It all finally devolves into the question "WHO is LORD — CAESAR OR CHRIST?"
The Pharisees tried to trick Jesus with a question, "Is it lawful to give tribute unto Caesar or not?" Jesus answered, "RENDER UNTO CAESAR THE THINGS THAT ARE CAESAR'S and UNTO GOD THE THINGS THAT ARE GOD'S"! (Matt. 22:21.)
The Pasadena campus property BELONGS TO GOD. It is all DEEDED in His name. His name is on the front foyer wall of the Auditorium. We refused absolutely to render it all over to CAESAR!
The time has come for us to stand up and be counted — whether we are on GOD'S SIDE, OR CAESAR'S!
Today there is only one place where the GOVERNMENT OF GOD is being administered on earth — and that is in the Worldwide Church of GOD! Soon Christ will return and the WHOLE EARTH will again be under the GOVERNMENT OF GOD.