Wednesday, November 25, 2015
Thanksgiving 2015, Anno Domini
Letter to the Anglican Orthodox Church from Bishop Jerry L. Ogles, Presiding Bishop, Anglican Orthodox Communion - Worldwide
The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved (Jer. 8:20)
And it shall come to pass in that day, that the great trumpet shall be blown, and they shall come which were ready to perish in the land of Assyria, and the outcasts in the land of Egypt, and shall worship the LORD in the holy mount at Jerusalem (Isa. 27:12-13)
In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. (1 Cor 15:52)
Another year fades into history on this Thanksgiving Day of 2015. The events of the year may bring remorse to the hearts of many, but above all else, we know that all things happen at the discretion of our LORD. Though we, or our loved ones, may suffer the tyrant's sword, these things are nothing of worth compared to the great glory that awaits every saint of God beyond Jordan Banks. These evil days must come to pass ere our redemption is realized in the Kingdom of God. And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh. (Luke 21:28)
Thanksgiving is a day roughly comparable to the Feasts of Trumpets which was the Fall Festival in the Old Testament Church. I praise God our nation has set aside this day to express our gratitude to God for His over-arching Providence and Protection through the years of our existence as a nation founded upon biblical principles.
And what should we be thankful for? In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. (1 Thess 5:18) "EVERYTHING" encompasses quite an array of reasons to be thankful - not only the abundance of blessings in food, clothing, and shelter; but also for ALL things (even those we consider calamitous). We must thank God for all with which He has blessed, and for all those things that are common to the sorrows of a wicked world which we have been spared. We have not yet been beheaded as many good and valiant Christians have been lately by a bloodthirsty religious caste that serves the Devil in the place of God. But, I must be quick to add: these things are both possible and likely to a people who have known God with intimate love and have turned away from Him. Whether we wish to admit it or not, America has turned a deaf ear to God and has focused on licentious sins of the flesh and conscience. How long will God withhold His hand of Judgment? That will be determined in God's own discretion, however, you can be sure that our Lord will not tarry forever.
The Feast of Trumpets is introduced in Leviticus 23:24-25. When the Trumpet sounded, the Children of Israel were to drop all labors and personal devices and proceed immediately to prepare Sabbath to the Lord. Later, the people dropped all labors and headed for the Temple for worship. The time is coming as illustrated in 1 Cor 15:52 above when the Trumpet shall sound and we shall all be gathered to go into the Holy Temple of God in Heaven.
Let us pray that each of us will be ready and approved of God at the sounding of that Trumpet which can be on any day, and any season.
Happy Thanksgiving to the Family of God, and God bless you.
Jerry L. Ogles