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August 25, 2021

Dear Brethren,

This year on the Roman calendar, the fall feasts and holy days are rather early. However, they are right on time according to God's sacred Calculated Hebrew Calendar. Each holy day begin at sunset the evening before:

  • Feast of Trumpets, September 7
  • Day of Atonement, September 16
  • Feast of Tabernacles, September 21-27
  • Last Great Day, September 28

At the writing of this letter, the new book God's Plan For Mankind—Revealed by His Sabbath and Holy Days,expanded Second Edition, is being mailed to you from Unit Packaging in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Please don't be overwhelmed by its size. God's awesome master plan is not something that can be adequately covered in a booklet. Indeed, it is needful for us to have an in-depth understanding of this vital subject. As the apostle Peter writes, we are to "grow in grace and knowledge"—especially this particular knowledge, as it unlocks the truth of God's plan that was prepared before the ages of time.

This book features 80 chapters, which cover the Sabbath and holy days in great detail as they relate to God's plan for man. The entire book has been audio recorded on two special CDs—all the messages and commentary. It is the culmination of over 50 years of studying and preaching the truth about God's Sabbath and holy days, in addition to all the research and work of other ministers of the Church of God before us. These include G. G. Ruppert and Herbert W. Armstrong, who both had a basic understanding of the holy days of God.

We need to realize that none of our understanding of God's plan is because of us. Rather, it has come to us from God because of His love and grace—so all the thanks, praise, and glory go to Him. In fact, God promised long ago to give such understanding to those who love and obey Him. In the book of Daniel we read: "And one said to the man clothed in linen who was above the waters of the river: 'How long shall it be to the end of these wonders?' And I [Daniel] heard the man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand and his left hand to heaven, and swore by Him who lives forever, saying, 'It shall be for a time, times, and a half a time. And when the power of the holy people has been finally broken, all these things shall be finished.'

"And I heard, but I did not understand. Then I said, 'O my lord, what shall be the end of these things?' And he said, 'Go your way, Daniel, for the words are closed up and sealed until the time of the end. Many shall be purified, and made white, and refined. But the wicked shall [continue to] do wickedly; and none of the wicked shall understand, but the wise shall understand' " (Dan. 12:6-10).

What an awesome calling God the Father and Jesus Christ have given to us—a calling planned before there was time as we know it! The apostle Paul writes about this: "Therefore, you should not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me His prisoner; but jointly suffer with me for the sake of the gospel, according to the power of God, Who has saved us and called us with a holy calling—not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the ages of time" (II Tim. 1:8-9).

The wonderful knowledge of God and His plan cannot be known or understood like reading an ordinary book, because it is a spiritual mystery that God has hidden in the Bible. Only He can reveal it and give such understanding through the power of His Holy Spirit. Let this sink in: The world doesn't know; religions don't know—not even the "Christianity" of this world; the wise of the world don't know; scientists don't know; educators don't know; governments don't know; and the average person does not know! That is an amazing truth of the Word of God!

The world has more Bibles than at any time in history, but people still can't understand it. Why? Because there is a great "veil of deceit" enveloping the whole world! The prophet Isaiah foretold that it would be this way; he wrote about this "face of the covering which covers all people, and the veil that is woven over all nations" (Isa. 25:7).

Isaiah describes the results of this "covering veil"—spiritual blindness! He writes: "Be stunned and amazed! Blind your eyes and be blind! They are drunk, but not with wine; they stagger, but not with strong drink, for the Lord has poured out upon you the spirit of deep sleep, and has closed your eyes; He has covered the prophets and your rulers, and the seers. And the vision of all has become to you like the words of a book that is sealed, which they give to one who is learned, saying, 'Please read this,' and he says, 'I cannot, for it is sealed.'

"And the book is delivered to him who is not learned, saying, 'Please read this,' and he says, 'I am not learned.' And the Lord said, 'Because this people draws near Me with their mouth, and with their lips honor Me, but their worship of Me is made up of the traditions of men learned by rote, and their fear toward Me is taught by the commandments of men; therefore, behold, I will proceed to do again a marvelous work among this people, even a marvelous work and a wonder; for the wisdom of their wise ones shall perish, and the wisdom of their intelligent ones shall vanish' " (Isa. 29:9-14).

Why does this happen? Because people are unwilling to believe God, to love Him, and to keep His commandments and laws! They want their ways and their traditions. This is why they reject God's holy Sabbath and His holy days.

And just as with every generation down through time, they fail to realize a fundamental truth about human nature. As Jeremiah wrote: "O Lord, I know that the way of man is not in himself; it is not in man who walks to direct his steps" (Jer. 10:23).

In their lies and deceptions, they believe that they are right. Indeed, for "all the ways of a man are clean in his own eyes, but the Lord weighs the spirits…. There is a way that seems right to a man, but the end thereof is the way of death" (Prov. 16:2, 25).

Then Satan (with his minions) moves in as an "angel of light" and locks them into their deceptions, further blinding their minds and hardening their hearts: "But if our gospel is hidden, it is hidden to those who are perishing; in whom the god of this age has blinded the minds of those who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, Who is the image of God, should shine unto them" (II Cor. 4:4).

God teaches us through the Holy Spirit and the written Word

God the Father draws us and teaches us (John 6:44-45). This is our calling. When we yield to that drawing and calling and turn our lives over to Him and to Jesus Christ through repentance, then the blindness, the veil of deceit, is removed from us (II Cor. 3:14-16) and we begin to understand God's Word. We also turn away from Satan. Then God leads us out of the darkness of Satan and this world. Paul writes that this was precisely Jesus' commission to him: "To open their eyes, that they may turn from darkness to light, and from the authority of Satan to the authority of God, so that they may receive remission of sins and an inheritance among those who have been sanctified through faith in Me" (Acts 26:18).

Once our blindness is removed, we begin to hear and see spiritually: "But blessed are your eyes, because they see; and your ears, because they hear. For truly I say to you, many prophets and righteous men have desired to see what you see, and have not seen; and to hear what you hear, and have not heard…. I will open My mouth in parables; I will utter things hidden from the foundation of the world" (Matt. 13:16-17, 35).

Paul, along with the other apostles, was to help complete the writing of the "mystery" of the Word of God: " Now, I am rejoicing in my sufferings for you, and I am filling up in my flesh that which is behind of the tribulations of Christ, for the sake of His body, which is the church; of which I became a servant, according to the administration of God that was given to me for you in order to complete the Word of God; even the mystery that has been hidden from ages and from generations, but has now been revealed to His saints; to whom God did will to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery [the entire plan of God] among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory" (Col. 1:24-27).

Keeping His promise to Daniel, God is now opening more and more understanding of His Word. Indeed, we must always remember: it all comes from God. It is not of ourselves, as if we are great intellectuals; it is not based on our abilities. If we forget this one fact, we become vain, carnal, foolish. And God will then remove our understanding!

Paul fully understood this. He made it absolutely clear that his preaching, teachings, and understanding came from God the Father and Jesus Christ—not from human intellect or wisdom. And I say the same thing concerning anything that I, or any of our elders, preach or write. We must always preach the truth of God as led by the Holy Spirit—which is the Spirit of the Truth!

Paul wrote to the Corinthians about this very thing: "And my message and my preaching was not in persuasive words of humanwisdom; rather, it was in demonstration of the Spirit and of power; so that your faith might not be in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.

"Now we speak wisdom among the spiritually mature; however, it is not the wisdom of this world, nor of the rulers of this world, who are coming to nothing. Rather, we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom that God foreordained before the ages unto our glory. Which not one of the rulers of this world has known (for if they had known, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory).

"But according as it is written, 'The eye has not seen, nor the ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God has prepared for those who love Him.' But God has revealed them to us by His Spirit, for the Spirit searches all things—eventhe deep things of God.

"For who among men understands the things of man except by the spirit of man which is in him? In the same way also, the things of God no one understands except by the Spirit of God. Now we have not received the spirit of the world, but the Spirit that is of God, so that we might know the things graciously given to us by God; which things we also speak, not in words taught by human wisdom, but in words taught by the Holy Spirit in order to communicate spiritual things by spiritual means. But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God; for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them because they are spiritually discerned" (I Cor. 2:4-14).

We should all read this section again—and keep our minds focused on what Paul is saying: the Word of God, which is the truth of God, is understood only through the Spirit of God, which is the Spirit of truth.

Peter writes about the importance of understanding that the Scriptures—Old and New Testaments—were written by men inspired directly by God: "We also possess the confirmed prophetic Word [now the complete Bible] to which you do well to pay attention, as to a light shining in a dark place [this world], until the day dawns [the return of Christ] and the morning star arises in your hearts [the first resurrection]. Knowing this first, that no prophecy of Scripture originated as anyone's own private interpretation; because prophecy was not brought at any time by human will, but the holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit" (II Peter 1:19-21).

Paul confirms what Peter wrote. In his second epistle to Timothy, he writes: "All Scripture is God-breathed [God-spirited] and is profitable for doctrine, for conviction, for correction, for instruction in righteousness; so that the man of God may be complete, fully equipped for every good work" (II Tim. 3:16-17).

This is the confidence and faith we can have in the Word of God—so we can continue to grow in God's grace and knowledge. We can follow the example of ancient King David, found in Psalm 25: "Show me Your ways, O Lord; teach me Your paths. Lead me in Your truth and teach me, for You are the God of my salvation; on You do I wait all the day long…. All the paths of the Lord are mercy and truth to those who keep His covenant and His testimonies…. What man is he who fears the Lord? He shall teach him in the way that He shall choose. His soul shall dwell at ease, and his seed shall inherit the earth. The secret of the Lord is with those who fear Him, and He will show them His covenant" (verses 4-5, 10, 12-14).

Thus we can rejoice, as we ask God: "Open my eyes, so that I may behold wondrous things out of Your law" (Psa. 119:18).

In this mailing we have included the audio CD with all the Feast messages. May God bless you with a tremendous fall festival season. Also, attached is a short study guide based on a recent sermon I did on the subject of Jesus "coming in the flesh"—past and present.

Once again, brethren, we thank you for your love and your prayers. We know that times are continuing to worsen—as lawlessness abounds all around us. We pray for you every day, that God will bless you, protect you, heal you, and guide you in all things. We thank you for your faithfulness to God, and for your helpfulness to the brethren. And as always, we thank you for your tithes and offerings, which are used entirely to serve the brethren and preach the Gospel.

With love in Christ Jesus,

Fred R. Coulter


— A Scriptural Study —

Did Jesus Christ—the Word, one of the Godhead—come in the flesh?
Is Jesus still coming in the flesh? If so, how is that accomplished?

John 1:1-3, 14

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through Him, and not even one thing that was created came into being without Him…. And the Word became flesh, and tabernacled among us (and we ourselves beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten [mono/ge/nous] with the Father), full of grace and truth.

Luke 1:30-35

Then the angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary, because you have found grace with God; and behold, you shall conceive in your womb and give birth to a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God shall give Him the throne of David, His forefather; and He shall reign over the house of Jacob into the ages, and of His kingdom there shall be no end."

But Mary said to the angel, "How shall this be, since I have not had sexual relations with a man?" And the angel answered and said to her, "The Holy Spirit shall come upon you, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow you; and for this reason, the Holy One being begotten [gen/no/me/nou; present, passive participle; nominative, singular, neuter] in you shall be called the Son of God."

Philippians 2:6-11

Who [Jesus], although He existed in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but emptied Himself, and was made in the likeness of men, and took the form of a servant; and being found in the manner of man, He humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Therefore, God has also highly exalted Him and bestowed upon Him a name which is above every name; that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of beings in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father.

John 8:23-29

And He said to them, "You are from beneath; I am from above. You are of this world; I am not of this world. That is why I said to you that you shall die in your sins; for if you do not believe that I AM, you shall die in your sins."

Then they said to Him, "Who are You?" And Jesus said to them, "The One that I said to you from the beginning. I have many things to say and to judge concerning you; but He Who sent Me is true, and what I have heard from Him, these things I speak to the world."

But they did not know that He was speaking to them of the Father.

Then Jesus said to them, "When you have lifted up the Son of man, then you yourselves shall know that I AM, and that I do nothing of Myself. But as the Father taught Me, these things I speak. And He Who sent Me is with Me. The Father has not left Me alone because I always do the things that please Him."

John 6:38-40

"For I did not come down from heaven to do My own will, but the will of Him Who sent Me. And this is the will of the Father Who sent Me: that of all whom He has given Me, I should not lose any, but should raise them up in the last day. And this is the will of Him Who sent Me: that everyone who sees the Son, and believes in Him, may have eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day."

I Timothy 3:16

And undeniably, great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifested in the flesh, was justified in the Spirit, was seen by angels, was proclaimed among the Gentiles, was believed on in the world, was received up in glory.

What do these passages tell us?

These scriptures prove that the Word was God, who became Jesus Christ, and is the Son of God, the only begotten of the Father. Thus, He was indeed God manifested in the flesh—the Savior of the world.

False teachers—whom the apostle John labels as antichrists—were teaching that Jesus did not really come in the flesh. Instead, they claimed that a spirit called "the Christ" came from heaven and possessed the fleshly body of the man called "Jesus." This false doctrine is called docetism. They concluded that Jesus was not personally God manifested in the flesh, who died for the sins of the world; rather, at the crucifixion, only the man called "Jesus" died. But the spirit, called "the Christ," did not die; rather that spirit left the dead body of "Jesus" and returned to heaven. As a result, they concluded that this "Jesus Christ" did not actually come in the flesh.

To counter this false doctrine, John verifies that the one who was God manifested in the flesh, the true Jesus Christ, had indeed come in the flesh: "Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. By this test you can know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God.

"And every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not from God. And this is the spirit of antichrist, which you heard was to come, and even now it is already in the world" (I John 4:1-3).

The phrase "has come in the flesh" in the Greek is: en (in) sarki (flesh) e/lee/lu/tho/ta (has come). "Has come" is a participle of the verb er/cho/mai—specifically a perfect, active participle; it is also accusative, singular, masculine. It means that Jesus, as the Son of God, came in the flesh—His own human flesh. When His earthly ministry as a man was completed, He died on the cross. Jesus' last words were: "It is finished"—and bowing His head, He yielded up His spirit (John 19:30). This was His final completed action. The participle e/lee/lu/tho/ta—used by John in I John 4:3—does not allow for an extended, on-going present tense meaning, i.e., that Jesus is still coming in the flesh as a person. This participle applies only to Jesus and His life in the flesh as a completed action. However, the "perfect" tense can also mean that the effect of Jesus' past completed action is ongoing, as it continues into the present. That is because of the salvational effect of His life, death, and resurrection as the sacrifice for the sin of the world—past, present, and future. He died once in the flesh for all time: "By Whose will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all time" (Heb. 10:10).

On the other hand, John does specifically write that "Jesus Christ is coming in the flesh"—present ongoing tense. But this is not through His own flesh, because He no longer has human flesh. However, Jesus does come spiritually into the flesh of believers—that is, into their hearts and minds—and has done so down through time. Where do we find this in the Bible?

How Jesus now comes "in the flesh"

After Jesus Christ was resurrected, He instructed the apostles and brethren for 40 days, then He ascended back to heaven to sit at the right hand of God the Father. Then, on the Day of Pentecost, 30 AD, Jesus began to carry out the Father's plan of salvation for the firstfruits of the Kingdom of God—the spiritual conversion of those called by God.

To accomplish this, the Holy Spirit would be given to those believers who had repented and been baptized. Why? Notice what Jesus revealed about the Holy Spirit to His apostles at His last Passover, hours before He was arrested: " 'If you love Me, keep the commandments—namely, My commandments. And I will ask the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that it may be with you throughout the age: Even the Spirit of the truth, which the world cannot receive because it perceives it not, nor knows it; but you know it because it dwells with you, and shall be within you….

" 'In that day, you shall know that I am in My Father, and you are in Me, and I am in you. The one who has My commandments and is keeping them, that is the one who loves Me; and the one who loves Me shall be loved by My Father, and I will love him and will manifest Myself to him.'

"Judas (not Iscariot) said to him, 'Lord, what has happened that You are about to manifest Yourself to us, and not to the world?'

"Jesus answered and said to him, 'If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and ­We will come to him and make Our abode with him' " (John 14:15-17, 20-23).

Jesus makes it clear that through the Spirit of the Truth—the Holy Spirit—God the Father and Jesus Christ would make their "abode" or dwelling place within converted believers, those who love Jesus and the Father and keep their words. "But when the Comforter comes, even the Holy Spirit, which the Father will send in My name, that one shall teach you all things, and shall bring to your remembrance everything that I have told you" (verse 26).

This also reveals that there are two aspects to the Holy Spirit: 1) The Spirit of the Father; and 2) The Spirit of Christ. The apostle Paul confirms this in Romans 8: "However, you are not in the flesh, but [you are] in the Spirit, if the Spirit of God [the Father] is indeed dwelling within you. But if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Him. But if Christ be within you, the body is indeed dead because of sin; however, the Spirit is life because of righteousness. Now if the Spirit of Him [God the Father] Who raised Jesus from the dead is dwelling within you, He Who raised Christ from the dead will also quicken [resurrect] your mortal bodies because of His Spirit that dwells within you" (Rom. 8:9-11).

Notice what Paul writes to the Colossians about "Christ in you": "Even the mystery that has been hidden from ages and from generations, but has now been revealed to His saints; to whom God did will to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory; Whom we preach, admonishing every man and teaching every man in all wisdom, so that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus" (Col. 1:26-28). In Galatians, he writes: "My little children, for whom I am again laboring in pain until Christ has been formed in you" (Gal. 4:19).

John confirms this: "You are of God, little children, and have overcome them [false prophets and false spirits] because greater is He [Jesus] who is in you than the one [Satan] who is in the world" (I John 4:4).

Where does John write that Jesus is now "coming in the flesh"?

As we have seen, when John writes in I John 4:3 that "Jesus Christ has come in the flesh," the phrase applies only to Jesus when He was God manifest in the flesh. The Greek e/lee/lu/tho/ta is a past, perfect participle referring only to the completed fleshly existence of Christ. This verse cannot be construed to mean that Jesus has been continually "coming [spiritually] in the flesh" of true believers down through time.

On the other hand, John does use that exact expression in II John 7: "Because many deceivers have entered into the world—those who do not confess that Jesus Christ is coming [er/cho/me/non; present, middle participle; accusative, singular, masculine] in the flesh of true believers…."

This clearly means that, through the power of the Holy Spirit, Jesus is presently continuing to come into the flesh of true believers—that is, into their minds and hearts—who have repented of their sins; have been baptized; have had hands laid on them; and have received the Holy Spirit. And again, John 14:23 shows that there are two aspects to the Holy Spirit: 1) It is the Spirit of God the Father, the seed of begettal, whereby we become a son or daughter of God; and 2) It is the Spirit of Jesus, which enables us to develop the mind of Christ.

Conclusion: Jesus Christ is now coming in the flesh of true believers!