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Weekly sermons from the Raleigh congregation of the United Church of God.

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Worship God in Spirit and in Truth
<iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/an8Wcx86MJU" width="480"></iframe><div><br></div><div><h2><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;">How Should We Worship God?</span></b><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;"><o:p></o:p></span></b></h2><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">A great way to answer this is to quote Jesus Himself</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> who says</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> &quot;<a href="https://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/07/worship-god-in-spirit-and-in-truth.html">worship God in spirit and in truth</a>&quot;. Lots of information is packed into that short phrase. Let&#39;s investigate more closely and see what we find. </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">One day Jesus was travelling through a region in Judea known as Samaria. The region of Samaria roughly aligned with the region once occupied by the 10 northern tribes after they split away from the rest of Israel. The people who lived in this region of Samaria had a curious collection of beliefs and practices that were similar to what the Jews practiced but definitely not the same.<span></span></span></p></div><a href="http://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/07/worship-god-in-spirit-and-in-truth.html#more">Keep Reading »</a><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/svGJzGaZdP8" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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This is the Love of God - That We Choose Love
<iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/W_GDjPr3qNo" width="480"></iframe><div><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">The biblical ideal of love is so big and all-encompassing that no single word in any language can fully communicate the revelation of love we find in God&#39;s word.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">The English word love is too vague and used in too many different ways to be adequate. With the same word we say &quot; I love ice cream&quot;, &quot;I love my boy friend&quot;, &quot;God so loved the world&quot;.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> BUT… </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">The bible does not try to teach us what we need to know about <a href="https://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/07/this-is-love-of-god-that-we-choose-love_0841676686.html">the love of God</a> through a vocabulary lesson... be it English, Greek, Hebrew, or Chinese.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">We are going to</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> build a biblical definition of love: </span></p><p class="MsoNormal"></p><ol style="text-align: left;"><li><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">with love that takes place in the mind of a person</span></li><li><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">then love that shows itself in actions of a person</span></li><li><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">love that flows back and forth </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">from person to person</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">.</span></li></ol><p></p><h2><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;">Love is Your Top Priority</span></b><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;"><o:p></o:p></span></b></h2><p class="MsoNormal"><b><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">1 John 4:7-8</span></b><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">your present purpose</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> is to put on the mind of God. So</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">,</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> understand</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">ing</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> Godly love is worth your time and energy.</span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="background-color: white; color: #0d0d0d; font-family: Roboto, Noto, sans-serif; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">📚 Dig deeper into your bible with this helpful bible study guide: </span><span style="background-color: white; color: #0d0d0d; font-family: Roboto, Noto, sans-serif; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/who-is-god<span></span></span></p></div><a href="http://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/07/this-is-love-of-god-that-we-choose-love.html#more">Keep Reading »</a><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/jZ_4szqnPfc" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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Put on Humility - How to Overcome Pride
<iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/VNI3ftBEh0k" width="480"></iframe><div><br></div><div><h2><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">Pride is a way of thinking which leads to bad results:</span></h2><p class="15" style="margin-left: 36.0000pt; mso-list: l1 level1 lfo1; text-indent: -18.0000pt;"><!--[if !supportLists]--><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun;">· </span><!--[endif]--><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Pride is</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> a source of tension with our fellow human beings</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="15" style="margin-left: 36.0000pt; mso-list: l1 level1 lfo1; text-indent: -18.0000pt;"><!--[if !supportLists]--><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun;">· </span><!--[endif]--><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Pride</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> puts us in conflict with the living God</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="15" style="margin-left: 36.0000pt; mso-list: l1 level1 lfo1; text-indent: -18.0000pt;"><!--[if !supportLists]--><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun;">· </span><!--[endif]--><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Pride leads us into temptation and sin</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="15" style="margin-left: 36.0000pt; mso-list: l1 level1 lfo1; text-indent: -18.0000pt;"><!--[if !supportLists]--><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun;">· </span><!--[endif]--><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Pride tricks us into leaving the pathway to eternal life</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Unless it is your goal to actively reject God&#39;s gift of eternal life you should be engaged in </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">a</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> spiritual battle with pride. To spin it from the other direction you should be actively seeking to develop humility. Our goal is not only to empty our</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">self of proud thinking and proud action... but to fill </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">that empty space</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> with a spirit of humility</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">…</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> and the works of humility.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">M</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">any scriptures  tell us we should... &quot;seek humility&quot;... &quot;clothe our</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">self with humility&quot; ... &quot;<a href="https://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/07/put-on-humility-how-to-overcome-pride.html">humble our</a></span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><a href="https://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/07/put-on-humility-how-to-overcome-pride.html"> </a></span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><a href="https://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/07/put-on-humility-how-to-overcome-pride.html">self before God</a>&quot;. These point us toward the goal but not necessarily the methods we use to get there. What does humbling myself look like?</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><b>Free booklet offer</b> 📖 <a href="https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/transforming-your-life-the-process-of-conversion">Transforming Your Life<span></span></a></span></p></div><a href="http://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/07/put-on-humility-how-to-overcome-pride.html#more">Keep Reading »</a><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/NdK3iQdqWLw" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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Should We Go To Church... On Saturday
<iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/amM47SanitA" width="480"></iframe> <p><span face="Roboto, Noto, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; color: #0d0d0d; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">God's commandments tell us to rest on the 7th day of each week. But the Sabbath rest is more than just a "day off". It is a day for spiritual instruction and fellowship with other believers. </span></p><span face="Roboto, Noto, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; color: #0d0d0d; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">In addition to being a day of rest from our regular work, the 7th day is a day we are commanded to gather together for a “holy convocation”, see Leviticus 23:3. If you would like to learn more about the 7th day Sabbath found in the bible request our free booklet Sunset to Sunset: God’s Sabbath Rest: </span><span face="Roboto, Noto, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; color: #0d0d0d; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/sunset-to-sunset-gods-sabbath-rest</span><span face="Roboto, Noto, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; color: #0d0d0d; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;"> Locate a United Church of God meeting near you: ➤ </span><span face="Roboto, Noto, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; color: #0d0d0d; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">http://ucg.org/congregations/</span><span face="Roboto, Noto, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; color: #0d0d0d; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;"> </span><span face="Roboto, Noto, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; color: #0d0d0d; white-space: pre-wrap;"><span style="font-size: large;">Popular Playlists:</span></span><span face="Roboto, Noto, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; color: #0d0d0d; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">1️⃣ <b>The Purpose of the First Four Commandments</b> </span><span face="Roboto, Noto, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; color: #0d0d0d; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLlHrYqLEsi04x0eu3p3Erq1BnJuRaXllG</span><span face="Roboto, Noto, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; color: #0d0d0d; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">2️⃣ <b>Heaven &amp; Hell: What the Bible Really Says</b> </span><span face="Roboto, Noto, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; color: #0d0d0d; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLlHrYqLEsi06EXMCnqEfCYeids3jCUTAK</span><span face="Roboto, Noto, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; color: #0d0d0d; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">3️⃣ <b>Remember the Sabbath Day</b> </span><span face="Roboto, Noto, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; color: #0d0d0d; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLlHrYqLEsi05EzhV6rXCUbqHRUtnYXMwi</span><span face="Roboto, Noto, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; color: #0d0d0d; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">4️⃣ <b>Where is the Church Jesus Established?</b> </span><span face="Roboto, Noto, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; color: #0d0d0d; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLlHrYqLEsi05pOIcCZBB4S9-qZ-taNhjJ</span><span face="Roboto, Noto, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; color: #0d0d0d; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;"> <br /></span><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/fXfFy4gPsZ8" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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Biblical Fasting - How Does it Help a Christian
<iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/S46rn07LYAU" width="480"></iframe>&nbsp;<div><br /></div><div><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: 'Liberation Serif'; font-size: 10.5000pt; mso-fareast-font-family: 宋体; mso-font-kerning: 1.0000pt; mso-spacerun: 'yes';">Voluntary fasting is recorded in both the old and new testament. In addition to general references to fasting, scripture specifically mentions that David fasted, Jesus fasted, and Paul fasted.</span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: 'Liberation Serif'; font-size: 10.5000pt; mso-fareast-font-family: 宋体; mso-font-kerning: 1.0000pt; mso-spacerun: 'yes';">What does the scriptures say about how <a href="https://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/06/biblical-fasting-how-does-it-help.html">biblical fasting</a> can help us grow in grace and knowledge?</span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="background-color: white; color: #0d0d0d; font-family: Roboto, Noto, sans-serif; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">Booklet offer: </span><span style="background-color: white; color: #0d0d0d; font-family: Roboto, Noto, sans-serif; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;"><a href="https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/what-happens-after-death">https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/what-happens-after-death</a></span></p></div><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/i94gBezaaOU" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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Pride - A Distorted View of Reality
<iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/mkNIKcJuqUs" width="480"></iframe><div><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;"><br></span></b></div><div><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">A bad tree yields  bad fruit… good fruit comes from a good tree… out of the abundance of the heart so a person speaks… and so they act. Jesus words tell us that s</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">in happens because of bad thinking which leads to bad behavior. The big culprits are lust of the flesh, covetousness, and the pride of life.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Today we are going to </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">look at</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> pride. We&#39;ll try to define pride,</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> we’ll explore 5</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> areas where pride sprouts up, </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">and 5</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> of the forms it takes... </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">finally considering</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> how a realistic self image can help us combat pride. </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span color="rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.87)" face="Roboto, Noto, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">Request our FREE bible study guide - <a href="https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/transforming-your-life-the-process-of-conversion">Transforming Your Life<span></span></a></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;"><a href="https://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/06/pride-distorted-view-of-reality.html">Pride: A Distorted View of Reality</a></span></b></p></div><a href="http://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/06/pride-distorted-view-of-reality.html#more">Keep Reading »</a><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/cQHa2Zl0T0M" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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Lust of the Flesh - A Root Cause of Sin and Evil
<iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/AqIuTtqyDCc" width="480"></iframe><div><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;"><br></span></div><div><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;"><br></span></div><div><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">The bible is not a long list of do&#39;s and dont</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">’</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">s... that is a popular </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">misunderstanding of scripture’s purpose</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">. Listing and condemning all the possible ways a person can sin would have tens of thousands of ent</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">ri</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">es... and then the human mind would </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">simply </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">dream up some more. How could the bible have explained the problem of addiction to prescription drugs, or cyber</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">-</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">crime, to people living 3,000 years ago?</span></div><div><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Your Creator is more interested in helping you get at the root causes</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> of sin</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">... problematic ways of thinking that do not change over time.... then it is up to you to figure out how it applies to your situation, or your era in time. </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Our purpose today is to discuss the root sin of LUST and its an</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">ti</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">dote, self control. First, by defining what it is and is not, second by looking at four ways lust can lead to sin: sex, drunkenness and gluttony, and laziness…</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">.finally by recommending its antidote: SELF CONTOL</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">The spirit must train itself to rule over the flesh… with God’s help and guidance.<span></span></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><a href="https://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/06/lust-of-flesh-root-cause-of-sin-and-evil.html" style="font-size: 14.6667px;">Lust of the Flesh - A Root Cause of Sin and Evil</a></span></p></div><a href="http://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/06/lust-of-flesh-root-cause-of-sin-and-evil.html#more">Keep Reading »</a><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/KiRfNsiMDbI" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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50 Day Countdown To Pentecost - From Egyptian Slavery to Mount Sinai
<iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/uCQLWqKlvQY" width="480"></iframe><div><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;"><br></span></div><div><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">Israel</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">’s journey</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;"> from the bondage of Egypt to the foot of Mount Sinai is a journey from their service to the cruel taskmasters of Egypt... to a covenant of service and loyalty to the living God. It is a parallel to the spiritual journey taken by every man and woman redeemed from the bondage of sin through Christ to serve the living God.</span></div><div><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">God</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> set </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Israel </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">free from bondage through the events of Passover and the festival of unleavened bread. </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">He</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> led them out and guided them to the foot of a mighty mountain</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> where</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> He introduced to them the way to real freedom</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">. Th</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">e freedom that comes from knowing the truth of God</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> beginning with His righteous commandments. T</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">he truth of God sets you free from bondage to habits and ways of thinking that have no future beyond the grave... and therefore end in death.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Pentecost reminds you that both the word of God and the spirit of God are needed to attain life everlasting! Today we are gong to zero in on the delivery of truth.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Tradition teaches that Israel&#39;s journey </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">from Egypt </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">to Sinai took about 50 days</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">. Placing </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">them at the foot of that mountain to hear the commandments spoken on the <a href="https://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/06/50-day-countdown-to-pentecost-from.html">day of Pentecost</a>. You have probably heard something like that over the years. Based on the biblical data even skeptics cannot deny that the giving of the commandments at Sinai took place </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">at least </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">sometime very near the day of Pentecost.</span></p> <span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span><p></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">The bible does not explicitly say that the commandments were spoken to Israel by God on the very day of Pentecost. However, as we walk through Israel&#39;s journey from Egypt to Sinai I am going to point out to you the biblical statements we have about the timeline. I believe these are road markers that lead us to Pentecost.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">The chart referenced in this message can be accessed here: </span><span style="font-family: Calibri;"><span style="font-size: 14.6667px;">https://www.ucg.org/system/storage/serve/1289511/egypt_to_sinai_chart.pdf<span></span></span></span></p></div><a href="http://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/06/50-day-countdown-to-pentecost-from.html#more">Keep Reading »</a><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/AkronU0VqIs" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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The Just Shall Live By Faith
<iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/m3JbwqxLybY" width="480"></iframe><div><br></div><div><h2><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">The prophetic book of Habakkuk is a </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">book of questions and answers. The time setting is</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;"> around 605 B.C. </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">The kingdom of the chosen people has rebelled and turned away from God. </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">Out of Israel only Judah is left... and they will soon be destroyed and taken as captives by Babylon.</span></h2><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">Habakkuk asks his questions, maybe you have asked the same questions… God replies with some unexpected answers… Throughout this book we are presented with one of the most important spiritual lessons of the bible… <a href="https://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/05/the-just-shall-live-by-faith.html">THE JUST WILL LIVE BY FAITH</a>.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span color="rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.87)" face="Roboto, Noto, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">Request our free bible study book - <a href="https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/you-can-have-living-faith">You Can Have Living Faith</a></span><span color="rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.87)" face="Roboto, Noto, sans-serif" style="background-color: white; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;"><br><span></span></span></p></div><a href="http://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/05/the-just-shall-live-by-faith.html#more">Keep Reading »</a><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/nMmjgMdW7rY" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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The Offering of the First Fruits and the Feast of Weeks
<iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/QDJ8tiBikaU" width="480"></iframe><div><br></div><div><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Today we are going to take a look at third annual holy day in the old testament. Among Israel this festival was known as the feast of weeks. It was a time to offer the first</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">fruits of the wheat harvest to God. But praise and thanks for abundant crops is only the beginning of the meaning of the feast of weeks.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><div style="text-align: left;"><a href="https://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/04/the-offering-of-first-fruits-and-feast.html"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Offering </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">the first</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> </span></a><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><a href="https://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/04/the-offering-of-first-fruits-and-feast.html">fruits</a> of the harvest  to Him is also a prophecy and foreshadow of how God will claim  first</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">fruits from all of humanity through calling and drawing people of all nations, ancestry, and cultures into His Church.</span></div><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="color: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.87); font-family: Roboto, Noto, sans-serif; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">Get more information about the biblical festivals request a copy of our free bible study guide - <a href="https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/gods-holy-day-plan-the-promise-of-hope-for-all-mankind">God&#39;s Holy Day Plan<span></span></a></span></p></div><a href="http://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/04/the-feast-of-weeks-today-we-are-going.html#more">Keep Reading »</a><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/TKWNNFpr_Ag" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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Fear of God is the Beginning of Wisdom
<p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/hzqEQlp2gBI" width="480"></iframe></p><p><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;">What Are You Afraid Of?</span></b></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">The pas</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">t</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> year [2020] </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">was</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> a year of tria</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">l and testing for society at large and for the Church of God. </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">It </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">was a year dominated by fear, fear of sickness, fear of the political power of others, fear of the flesh, fear of man. There have been</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> stumble</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">s, but e</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">ven failure</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">s</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> can be used for good if we use</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> them</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> as an opportunity to reflect, meditate, </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">and</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> soberly consider our</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> thoughts and </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">actions</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Today we will discuss  fear. I want to focus on fear of God, however, I first want to briefly touch on human fear, or fear of the flesh.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><span style="background-color: white; color: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.52); font-family: Roboto, RobotoDraft, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px;">https://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/04/fear-of-god-is-beginning-of-wisdom.html<span></span></span></span></p><a href="http://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/04/fear-of-god-is-beginning-of-wisdom.html#more">Keep Reading »</a><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/1aYNAbW76hE" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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When Does the Sabbath Day Begin
<iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/8uwvP9EpUvc" width="480"></iframe> <div><br></div><h2><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;">When Does the Sabbath Day Start and End?</span></b><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;"><o:p></o:p></span></b></h2><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">When I first began observing the 7</span><sup><span style="font-family: Calibri; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;; vertical-align: super;">th</span></sup><span style="font-family: Calibri; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> day Sabbath I assumed the day began after midnight on Friday and went through to midnight that Saturday. However, when I came into contact with the Church of God they showed me from the bible that God’s way of reckoning time was different. </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><span style="color: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.87); font-family: Roboto, Noto, sans-serif; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">If you would like to learn more about the biblical 7th day Sabbath and its importance for you get our free bible study guide on the subject here: </span><span style="color: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.87); font-family: Roboto, Noto, sans-serif; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/sunset-to-sunset-gods-sabbath-rest<span></span></span></span></p><a href="http://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/04/when-does-sabbath-day-begin.html#more">Keep Reading »</a><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/zTVspCP2bzI" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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Quartodecimans & the Council of Nicea 325 A.D.
<iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/7lnf7mYXc60" width="480"></iframe><div><b style="text-indent: 13.05pt;"><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;"><br></span></b></div><div><a href="https://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/03/quartodecimans-council-of-nicea-325-ad.html"><b style="text-indent: 13.05pt;"><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;">The </span></b><b style="text-indent: 13.05pt;"><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;">Early Church and</span></b><b style="text-indent: 13.05pt;"><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;"> the </span></b><b style="text-indent: 13.05pt;"><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;">Biblical </span></b><b style="text-indent: 13.05pt;"><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;">Passover</span></b></a><div><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Last year leading up to the Passover</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> I walked through three </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">NT </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">scriptures often used to teach against the observance of the biblical holy days. Using the setting and context I showed that Paul was teaching against human customs and traditions rather than </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">the </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">commanded holy day observance</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> of scripture</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">. </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">That message is available online titled: “</span><i><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">The Apostle Paul and the Biblical Holy Days</span></i><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">”.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Our purpose today is to use references from written history to demonstrate that the Church Jesus established observed the biblical Passover on the 14th of</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> Aviv/</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Nisan for the first 200 years of its existence.  And that is was only after significant political pressure that most Christian congregations changed the date of this observance to what is now called Easter Sunday.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">If the apostle Paul taught against the observance of the biblical holy days as many falsely proclaim then why was the church still observing holy days for 2 centuries after his death?  Was he just a really ineffective teacher? I&#39;ve had people boldly tell me how Paul&#39;s instructions about dumping the holy days are so clear and obvious ... yet </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">the record of history shows </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">the very congregations he established in Asia Minor were upholding the biblical Passover for 200 years later.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">And they kept it on the 14th of </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Aviv/</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Nisan just like it say</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">s</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> to in the book of Exodus and </span><b><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">Leviticus 23:5</span></b></p><p class="MsoNormal"><b><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">To learn more about this important subject please request a free copy of <a href="https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/holidays-or-holy-days-does-it-matter-which-days-we-observe">Holidays or Holy Days Which Should We Observe</a></span></b></p><p class="MsoNormal"><b><span></span></b></p></div></div><a href="http://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/03/quartodecimans-council-of-nicea-325-ad.html#more">Keep Reading »</a><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/_QTroRhwCbc" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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Eat the Passover in Haste - Be Ready For Rapid Change
<iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/Y5WDJz5_oU8" width="480"></iframe><p> <b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;">Are You Ready?</span></b></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">The Passover pictures and calls us to remember many things, redemption from the bondage of slavery, the sacrifice of the lamb of God [Jesus Christ] as the payment of the death penalty we earned through our sin. Self-examination, covenant renewal, baptism into the death of Christ... there is so much to cover at this important time of the year.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">There is yet another message embedded in the spring holy days which we don&#39;t often dwell upon. A message that is especially relevant to us in light of the national and global  meltdown over the COVID 19 virus. That message [which I am going cover today] is haste. </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">In the past few weeks  we have seen life on the entire planet turned upside down. It happened very quickly. One week we were living the life of Riley, watching our retirement investments grow, planning weddings, graduation ceremonies, looking forward to the spring holy days... the next week we woke up to a world shutting down border crossings, stopping travel, ordering citizens to stay in their homes, closing businesses, schools etc.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">A lesson you should get from this global calamity is: to realize through experience how easily, and how quickly EVERYTHING can change. Over the years many of us have said things like &quot;yup, things can change quickly... and we have to be prepared for that before Christ returns&quot;... but now I think many of us  born after WW2 have seen it actually happen. The entire world can turn very quickly indeed.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">This present distress will most likely pass and things return &quot;normal&quot;, although with a slightly modified sense of what defines &quot;normal&quot;. But looking ahead there are prophesied changes coming before Christ’s return. Changes which will also come quickly... but after THESE changes there will be no return to &quot;normal&quot;.  Jesus Christ, your lord, master, head of the church, future bridegroom... wants you to prepare now for that time.</span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri;"><span style="font-size: 14.6667px;">Get a Free copy of <a href="https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/gods-holy-day-plan-the-promise-of-hope-for-all-mankind">God&#39;s Holy Day Plan</a> to learn more about the biblical festivals and their significance for followers of Jesus Christ.<span></span></span></span></p><a href="http://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/03/eat-passover-in-haste-be-ready-for.html#more">Keep Reading »</a><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/qoXwfEGrVM4" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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Get Your Self Out of Sinful Situations
<iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/oDAbiEYThas" width="480"></iframe><p><b style="text-indent: 26.1pt;"><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;"></span></b></p><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><b style="text-align: left; text-indent: 26.1pt;">The Ongoing Problem of Sin</b><b style="text-align: left; text-indent: 26.1pt;"><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;"> </span></b></div><p></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">The 7 day feast of unleavened bread</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> follows the observance of the Passover</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">…</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> which is fitting since</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">It pictures what must take place after the Passover. The </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">central theme and message of the days of unleavened bread is addressing the ongoing problem of sin</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Each</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> Passover is a memorial of Jesus death which pays the penalty we earned through our past sins.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> After the wonderful forgiveness and redemption comes the long painful process of separating our self from sin. E</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">ven for the believing baptism person... the problem of sin remains and must be confronted </span><b><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">1</span></b><b><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;"> J</span></b><b><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">ohn 1:8 - 2:6</span></b><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Our purpose today is to discuss two approaches to the ongoing problem of sin:</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="15" style="margin-left: 36pt; mso-list: l1 level1 lfo1; text-indent: -18pt;"><!--[if !supportLists]--><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun;">1. </span><!--[endif]--><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">G</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">etting sin out of our lives [pictured by removal of leaven from our homes]</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="15" style="margin-left: 36pt; mso-list: l1 level1 lfo1; text-indent: -18pt;"><!--[if !supportLists]--><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun;">2. </span><!--[endif]--><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">G</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">etting our self out of sin [</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">G</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">etting our self out of sin being removed from the society and culture of Egypt</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> … their outlook on life, what they considered good and evil</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">]<span></span></span></p><a href="http://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/03/get-your-self-out-of-sinful-situations.html#more">Keep Reading »</a><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/FyfxgJxARx4" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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Deception and The False Prophet of Revelation
<iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/pzcSRSoPZOw" width="480"></iframe><div><br></div><div><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Some b</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">iblical prophecy </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">concerned the first coming of Christ and some of it </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">look</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">s</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> ahead </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">to</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> the time </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">His return</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> in great power and glory.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> We read of</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> kingdoms rising and falling, troubles of persecution, war, disease. All these </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">were</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> present </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">from the time the prophecy was given through</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> the intervening 2,000 years of human history, yet seem to insistent as the final days approach. </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Deception and false prophets are another area prophecy addresses... deception </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">has been </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">present </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">since</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> the days of the apostles</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">, it is present</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> today... and deception is predicted to intensify as the </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">time of the end </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">approaches. </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><b><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">Matthew 24:22-2</span></b><b><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">5</span></b><b><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;"><o:p></o:p></span></b></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Have you ever wondered or worried about being deceived in the time of the end? If some prophet is at large doing amazing miracles how could you not be swayed... their instruction and teaching would appear to have </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">the power of the spirit realm</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> backing it up. How will you be able to tell what is &quot;of God&quot; and what is &quot;of the evil one&quot;?</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><b><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">Revelation 13:11-14</span></b><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> the false prophet makes your task of discernment even harder because he/she makes them self look like a teacher of Christ while teaching a message that is actually against Christ (so you have to </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">look past any miracle or sign and </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">pay attention to what they actually say). The false prophet will appear to be on the side of all that is right and good... and they will have power to perform amazing signs and wonders. </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Today I would like to explain the biblical guidelines for determining the validity of prophets and prophecies and determine if they are &quot;of God&quot; or &quot;not of God&quot;.</span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><span style="color: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.87); font-family: Roboto, Noto, sans-serif; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">Request your free copy of --- Who Is The Anti-Christ? </span><span style="color: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.87); font-family: Roboto, Noto, sans-serif; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;"><a href="https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/who-is-the-antichrist-0">https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/who-is-the-antichrist-0</a> </span></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: xx-small; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><span style="color: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.87); font-family: Roboto, Noto, sans-serif; white-space: pre-wrap;">Read this message on our blog ➤ </span><span style="color: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.87); font-family: Roboto, Noto, sans-serif; white-space: pre-wrap;"><a href="https://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/01/deception-and-false-prophet-of.html">https://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/01/deception-and-false-prophet-of.html</a><span></span></span></span></p></div><a href="http://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/01/deception-and-false-prophet-of.html#more">Keep Reading »</a><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/IPzNuCRPFIA" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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Pay Your Vows to God
<p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/mQ7GP74_wqg" width="480"></iframe></p><h2><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;">Vows and Commitment</span></b><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;"><o:p></o:p></span></b></h2><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Each new year that comes makes us all think about what the year ahead will be like. Many people decide to start off the new year with some plans... very often called &quot;new year&#39;s resolutions&quot;... usually focused on some form of self improvement. </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">New year&#39;s resolutions are a running joke in our culture... because they are most often abandoned sometime within the next few months. Modern culture has a low expectation of commitment [</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">we don’t expect much </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">of our self and </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">we don’t expect much </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">of others]... this affects marriage and families, business and employment, politics, international relations etc.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">People might have logical or emotional reasons for avoiding commitment... but having a good reason for avoiding commitment does not protect us from the harm that </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">a non-committal</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> approach will inevitably bring... both personally or socially.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Commitment and follow through are an essential ingredient of a functional healthy society, and for our purposes in this message </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">commitment is necessary for </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">a person who is growing in grace, knowledge and putting on the mind of the God family.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Today I </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">will approach</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> the subject of commitment by looking at what the bible says about vows. Then I&#39;ll follow up with a brief section on setting some spiritual goals based on the gifts of the spirit. </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">blog URL for syndicates </span><span style="background-color: white; color: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.52); font-family: Roboto, RobotoDraft, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px;">https://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/01/pay-your-vows-to-god.html<span></span></span></p><a href="http://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/01/pay-your-vows-to-god.html#more">Keep Reading »</a><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/m77SogFY1Qw" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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The Riddle of the Beast of Revelation and Daniels Dream
<p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/Wyi6AavCQ5w" width="480"></iframe></p><h2><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;"><a href="https://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/01/the-riddle-of-beast-of-revelation-and.html">The Riddle of the Beast</a></span></b><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;"><o:p></o:p></span></b></h2><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">The book of Revelation is Jesus Christ&#39;s final written words to His church. </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">These words</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> foretell future events as they relate to the Church of God. The book is both a revealing and a riddle.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">A riddle is a word puzzle in which the answer is understandable based upon what is said, yet not understood by anyone but the riddler. Here&#39;s a classic riddle you may have heard; &quot;</span><i><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">what is black and white and read/red all over?</span></i><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">&quot; The person hearing the riddle is misdirected by the clever word play based on the word red/read.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> The meaning is concealed but yet fully spoken.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Most people don&#39;t get good riddles until they are given the answer. Then when the</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> answer is revealed </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">it all seems quite obvious.</span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri;"><span style="font-size: 14.6667px;"><br></span></span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><span></span></span></p><a href="http://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2021/01/the-riddle-of-beast-of-revelation-and.html#more">Keep Reading »</a><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/klAXi0ii1FY" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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The Mercy and Compassion of God
<div style="text-align: center;"><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/run84HYbWRg" width="480"></iframe></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><br></span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Mercy is </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">part of the emotional makeup of the living</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> God... when God wants to tell us about himself </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">to us </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">and reveal some of the inner workings of His being... MERCY top</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">s</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> the list.</span></div><div><p class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">But what is mercy? When refe</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">r</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">ring to God&#39;s mercy are we merely using another means of saying God&#39;s grace? Does God&#39;s mercy serve the same function as His forgiveness?</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> IF different … how are they different?</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">I believe God&#39;s mercy is intimately related to His grace and His forgiveness yet </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">m</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">ercy is a more intimate revealing of the mind of God that either grace of forgiveness.  </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Today we will </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">review</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> mercy in the old testament, then in the new testament</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> as</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> God&#39;s revelation to us of who and what He is</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">. Also, </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">that developing mercy in our own way of thinking is </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">crucial </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">in God&#39;s plan for us to grown into fully mature children in His eternal family.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: left;"><b><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">Exodus</span></b><b><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;"> 33:18-20,</span></b><b><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;"> 34:6-7a</span></b><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> Moses had asked God if he might see Him in all his glory... God answered, &quot;I will cause my goodness to pass before you&quot;. God is not known by seeing His appearance, He is know though His character</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">… especially</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> seeing that character in action. </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">In revealing Himself </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">God does not focus on His power, His all knowing wisdom, or His transcend</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">e</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">nce of all things physical and material... He reveals Himself through mercy, grace, and forgiveness [but also on justice]. Understanding these </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">qualities </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">is essential to understanding and knowing God. </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Today we will concentrate on mercy.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"></p><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="color: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.87); font-family: Roboto, Noto, sans-serif; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">Request this free bible study booklet: </span><a href="https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/who-is-god" style="font-family: Roboto, Noto, sans-serif; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">Who Is God?</a></div><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><div style="text-align: left;"><a href="https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/who-is-god" style="font-family: Roboto, Noto, sans-serif; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/who-is-god</a></div></span><p></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span></span></p></div><a href="http://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2020/12/the-mercy-and-compassion-of-god.html#more">Keep Reading »</a><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/AZcRYHqB_Oc" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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Sabbath Keeping - An Ox in a Ditch and Healing on the Sabbath
<iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/mOdFtgEs0Z8" width="480"></iframe><div><br><div><p class="MsoNormal" style="background: rgb(255, 255, 255); margin: 0pt; padding: 0pt; text-indent: 0pt; vertical-align: baseline;"><span style="background-attachment: initial; background-clip: initial; background-image: initial; background-origin: initial; background-position: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-size: initial; color: #212121; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 12pt; letter-spacing: 0pt;">The ox in a ditch principle is found in </span><b><span style="background-attachment: initial; background-clip: initial; background-image: initial; background-origin: initial; background-position: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-size: initial; color: #212121; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 12pt; letter-spacing: 0pt;">Luke 14:1-6</span></b><span style="background-attachment: initial; background-clip: initial; background-image: initial; background-origin: initial; background-position: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-size: initial; color: #212121; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 12pt; letter-spacing: 0pt;">. From this short section of scripture we get an important perspective on Sabbath keeping:<span style="font-family: Source Code Pro Black;"> </span></span><i><span style="background-attachment: initial; background-clip: initial; background-image: initial; background-origin: initial; background-position: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-size: initial; color: #212121; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 12pt; letter-spacing: 0pt;">It is right and proper to alleviate the suffering of others on the Sabbath</span></i><span style="background-attachment: initial; background-clip: initial; background-image: initial; background-origin: initial; background-position: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-size: initial; color: #212121; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 12pt; letter-spacing: 0pt;">. The example of the ox falling into a hole it cannot get out of also adds the element of an emergency and danger where immediate action is required.</span><span style="color: #212121; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 12pt; letter-spacing: 0pt;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="background: rgb(255, 255, 255); margin: 0pt; padding: 0pt; text-indent: 0pt; vertical-align: baseline;"><span style="color: #212121; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 12pt; letter-spacing: 0pt;"> </span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="background: rgb(255, 255, 255); margin: 0pt; padding: 0pt; text-indent: 0pt; vertical-align: baseline;"><span style="background-attachment: initial; background-clip: initial; background-image: initial; background-origin: initial; background-position: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-size: initial; color: #212121; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 12pt; letter-spacing: 0pt;">Actions required to alleviate suffering could take the form of work you would otherwise not perform on the Sabbath but which needs to be addressed right away.</span><span style="color: #212121; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 12pt; letter-spacing: 0pt;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="background: rgb(255, 255, 255); margin: 0pt; padding: 0pt; text-indent: 0pt; vertical-align: baseline;"><span style="color: #212121; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 12pt; letter-spacing: 0pt;"> </span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="background: rgb(255, 255, 255); margin: 0pt; padding: 0pt; text-indent: 0pt; vertical-align: baseline;"><span style="background-attachment: initial; background-clip: initial; background-image: initial; background-origin: initial; background-position: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-size: initial; color: #212121; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 12pt; letter-spacing: 0pt;">In<span style="font-family: Source Code Pro Black;"> </span></span><b><span style="background-attachment: initial; background-clip: initial; background-image: initial; background-origin: initial; background-position: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-size: initial; color: #212121; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 12pt; letter-spacing: 0pt;">Luke 13:10-15</span></b><span style="background-attachment: initial; background-clip: initial; background-image: initial; background-origin: initial; background-position: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-size: initial; color: #212121; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 12pt; letter-spacing: 0pt;"> <span style="font-family: Calibri;">another example is offered by Jesus where the </span></span><u><span style="background-attachment: initial; background-clip: initial; background-image: initial; background-origin: initial; background-position: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-size: initial; color: #212121; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 12pt; letter-spacing: 0pt;">regular work</span></u><span style="background-attachment: initial; background-clip: initial; background-image: initial; background-origin: initial; background-position: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-size: initial; color: #212121; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 12pt; letter-spacing: 0pt;"> of feeding and tending animals is cited. If the animal&#39;s owner does not perform the necessary feeding and watering on the Sabbath then the animal would suffer. We know the animals would not die without water or food for 24 hours, but why should they suffer in even a minor way so that we might keep the Sabbath more strictly. </span><span style="background-attachment: initial; background-clip: initial; background-image: initial; background-origin: initial; background-position: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-size: initial; color: #212121; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 12pt; letter-spacing: 0pt;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="background: rgb(255, 255, 255); margin: 0pt; padding: 0pt; text-indent: 0pt; vertical-align: baseline;"><span style="background-attachment: initial; background-clip: initial; background-image: initial; background-origin: initial; background-position: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-size: initial; color: #212121; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 12pt; letter-spacing: 0pt;"><br></span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="background: rgb(255, 255, 255); margin: 0pt; padding: 0pt; text-indent: 0pt; vertical-align: baseline;"><span style="background-attachment: initial; background-clip: initial; background-image: initial; background-origin: initial; background-position: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-size: initial; color: #212121; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 12pt; letter-spacing: 0pt;">Request a free bible study guide - <a href="Sabbath Keeping: An Ox in a Ditch and Healing on the Sabbath">The Ten Commandments</a> <span></span></span></p></div></div><a href="http://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2020/12/sabbath-keeping-ox-in-ditch-and-healing.html#more">Keep Reading »</a><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/wz-5jH0K-uU" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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Leaving Sin Behind - Israel Leaving Egypt
<div style="text-align: center;"><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/UzrzyUF4o-U" width="480"></iframe></div><p> <span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt;">The 7 day Festival of Unleavened Bread was given to Israel so they would remember their deliverance from the clutches of Egypt. That same festival is now given to the Church of God under Jesus Christ so that we will remember our own deliverance from the clutches of sin and futility.</span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: 等线; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Just as Israel was commanded by God to come out of Egypt.. you were told [and today are being reminded] to come out of a way of thinking and acting that has no positive future… because sin separates you from God and cuts you off from eating of the tree of life.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: 等线; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: 等线; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Lets take a few minutes to review some scriptures on coming out of Egypt:</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: 等线; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><b><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-ansi-font-weight: bold; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: 等线; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Hebrews 11:24-28</span></b><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: 等线; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> leaving behind temporary pleasures for a reward… a reward with a positive future.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: 等线; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><b><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-ansi-font-weight: bold; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: 等线; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Revelation 11:8 </span></b><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: 等线; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">the idea of a humanly devised society, built up as an alternative to God’s society, endures and persists until the day of Christ’s return. The scriptures here speak of the God hating society of the end which is of the same spirit as Egypt… and Sodom. </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: 等线; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: 等线; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">His command to come out of a sinful society is as real in our time as it was in the past. And so we can draw lessons, and warnings from the biblical record we have</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: 等线; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">… given</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: 等线; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> those commanded to come out of Egypt and Sodom.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: 等线; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: 等线; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><span style="color: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.87); font-family: Roboto, Noto, sans-serif; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">Request a free copy of: The Road To Eternal Life </span><span style="color: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.87); font-family: Roboto, Noto, sans-serif; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/the-road-to-eternal-life<span></span></span></span></p><a href="http://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2020/12/leaving-sin-behind-israel-leaving-egypt.html#more">Keep Reading »</a><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/0geO5bfrpk0" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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The Hardening of the Heart
<div style="text-align: center;"><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/3u5wCsJQ6Y8" width="480"></iframe> </div><div style="text-align: left;"><h2><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;">The Hardening of </span></b><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;">The</span></b><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;"> Heart</span></b><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;"><o:p></o:p></span></b></h2><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">The hardening of the heart is a biblical way of indicating a spirit that is stubborn, obstinate, resistant, self righteous, unmerciful, and [the most dangerous of all] oblivious to their own spiritual condition... Hard hardheartedness is offered up in scripture as an explanation for the unbelief of humanity at large, but also as a warning to the household of God</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">. Hardness of heart is </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">a spiritual condition that can creep up on </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">you </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">and cause </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">you </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">to miss out on the glory and inheritance of the first-fruits.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><!--[if !supportLists]--><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun;">1. </span><!--[endif]--><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Romans 9 is where hardheartedness among unbelievers is addressed. The example of hard hardheartedness given is the Pharaoh of Egypt.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin-left: 0.0000pt; mso-char-indent-count: 0.0000; mso-list: l0 level1 lfo1; mso-para-margin-left: 0.0000gd; text-indent: 0.0000pt;"><!--[if !supportLists]--><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun;">2. </span><!--[endif]--><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Hebrews 3 is where the Church of God is warned about their own hardness of heart. The example given is indifference and disregard for the weekly Sabbath.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Today we will walk through both sections of scripture. In the process learning how hard hardheartedness happens, and how it can affect us.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="color: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.87); font-family: Roboto, Noto, sans-serif; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">Request a free copy of &quot;<a href="https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/what-does-the-bible-teach-about-grace">What Does the Bible Teach About Grace</a>&quot; </span><span style="color: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.87); font-family: Roboto, Noto, sans-serif; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/what-does-the-bible-teach-about-grace<span></span></span></p></div><a href="http://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2020/12/the-hardening-of-heart.html#more">Keep Reading »</a><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/ItbQInmxlcg" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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Conduct in the Household of God
<div style="text-align: center;"><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/_oP7gZM8ECs" width="480"></iframe> </div><div style="text-align: left;"><h2><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;">Ephesus: Home Economics in the Household of God</span></b><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;"><o:p></o:p></span></b></h2><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">A well-run household has rules of conduct and procedures. Knowing the house rules helps day-to-day living run smoothly and avoids strife. Knowing in advance who&#39;s job it is to wash and put away the dishes prevents every night turning into a battle. And so it is with the household of God, which is the Church. </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Today we will finish off our review of Paul&#39;s instructions for Timothy regarding the congregation in Ephesus. Chapters 4,5, and 6 of Paul&#39;s letter to Timothy provide additional guidance for congregational matters that are as relevant today as they were in 60 A.D.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="color: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.87); font-family: Roboto, Noto, sans-serif; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">Request a free copy of <a href="https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/the-church-jesus-built">The Church that Jesus Built</a></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="color: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.87); font-family: Roboto, Noto, sans-serif; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;"></span><span style="color: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.87); font-family: Roboto, Noto, sans-serif; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/the-church-jesus-built</span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span></span></p></div><a href="http://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2020/11/conduct-in-household-of-god.html#more">Keep Reading »</a><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/IFVn5JYsuW8" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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The Household of God
<div style="text-align: center;"><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/QA3R-YB5r84" width="480"></iframe> </div><div><h2 style="text-align: left;"><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;">Ephesus</span></b><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;">: </span></b><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;">Roles and Responsibilities</span></b><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;"> In the Household of God     </span></b><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;"><o:p></o:p></span></b></h2><p class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">The apostle Paul wrote 2 letters to Timothy. In them Paul </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">commissioned Timothy </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">to address problems </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">that had taken root </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> in the church of God located in Ephesus. In the first chapter of the first letter to Timothy, Paul identifies the problem as false doctrines [teaching based on genealogies and myths]. He wants Timothy to confront and correct the situation with all assurance that he has the authority and mandate to get the job done. </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Paul does not leave Timothy to figure out how to attack the problem</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> without guidance</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">. Paul had plenty of experience settling congregational disputes, correcting bad practices, establishing proper doctrinal focus and spiritual development. </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Today we are going to review the plan and priorities </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">which </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Paul laid out for Timothy in the next section of the letter.</span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: left;"><span style="color: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.87); font-family: Roboto, Noto, sans-serif; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">Request your free copy of a bible study guide we have prepared for you on this subject: <a href="https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/the-church-jesus-built">The Church Jesus Built</a></span><span style="font-family: Calibri;"><span style="font-size: 14.6667px;"><br></span></span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><span></span></span></p></div><a href="http://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2020/11/the-household-of-god.html#more">Keep Reading »</a><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/e7ij3tOAiXo" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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False Teachers in the Church of Ephesus: Endless Genealogies and Fables
<div style="text-align: center;"><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="270" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/34hR_vUjliA" width="480"></iframe> </div><div style="text-align: left;"><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;"><br></span></b></div><div style="text-align: left;"><b><span style="color: #4f81bd; font-family: Calibri; font-size: 13pt;">Ephesus: A Congregation in Trouble</span></b></div><div style="text-align: left;"><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Ephesus was a local assembly of God people on the coast of what is now Turkey. At that time it was a huge metropolitan city especially noted for it magnificent temple dedicated to Artemis. The goddess protector of young girls, also of childbirth/midwifery... </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">You can read about Paul establishing the congregation in Acts 19:1-40 and dynamically drawing them out of a culture dedicated to the occult and sorcery. In Acts 20:17-38 you can read Paul&#39;s farewell warning to the</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> elders there</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> about <a href="https://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2020/11/false-teachers-in-church-of-ephesus.html">false teachers</a> who would soon attack them like ravenous wolves, and in Revelation 2:1-7 you can read Christ&#39;s assessment of Ephesus; they beat back the false teachings, persevered in the truth, but they appear to have lost much of their zeal and enthusiasm for the precious truth revealed to them. </span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">After Paul left Ephesus he travelled to Jerusalem where he was arrested, imprisoned, and sent to Rome for a trial. While under house arrest in Rome Paul wrote quite a bit concerning the Ephesian church: the book of Ephesians itself [a very high enthusiastic doctrinal message], plus 1st and 2nd Timothy which are written to Timothy concerning problems in the Ephesus church. Timothy was specifically sent there and commissioned to correct the situation [</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">many aspects of this instruction are</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"> applicable to any congregation if necessary].</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;">Our purpose to day is to review Paul&#39;s instructions to Timothy.</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11.0000pt; mso-bidi-font-family: &#39;Times New Roman&#39;; mso-fareast-font-family: SimSun; mso-spacerun: &#39;yes&#39;;"><o:p></o:p></span></p><p class="MsoNormal"><span style="color: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.87); font-family: Roboto, Noto, sans-serif; font-size: 15px; white-space: pre-wrap;">Request a free copy of <a href="https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/the-church-jesus-built">THE CHURCH JESUS BUILT</a> <span></span></span></p></div><a href="http://ucgraleigh.blogspot.com/2020/11/false-teachers-in-church-of-ephesus.html#more">Keep Reading »</a><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/UnitedChurchOfGodRaleigh/~4/ZIFFd3G17vk" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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