THE WORD OF TRUTH MINISTRY
228 NORTH EL MOLINO AVENUE, PASADENA, CALIFORNIA 91101-1675
Otis Q. Sellers, Founder David R. Hettema, Director
Volume 3, No. 7 Jane Sellers Hancock, Editor January 2012
THOUGHTS FROM THE EDITOR
Jane S. Hancock
We are a small group of volunteers, here at The Word of Truth Ministry—small but dedicated. Although we have an office in Pasadena, it is only “open for business” a few hours a week when David Hettema and Rusty Hancock come in, check the mail, send out orders—and take care of all the other little things that go along with the work. Robert Hammond is in charge of everything that has to do with our Web site as well as staying in touch with our readers who have e-mail addresses. He does that from his home. He also plays the piano for us on Sunday mornings. Joanne Johnson and Milton Hammond have taken on the responsibility—physical and financial—of publishing the Bulletin, which we try to get out four times a year. And I do what I can to write a column for the Bulletin, to read and edit everything that goes into the Bulletin before publication. We do this through e-mail, occasional phone calls, quick Sunday morning chats. All of us participate in some way, when we can, in the stuffing and mailing of the envelopes that include the Bulletin, pamphlets and advertising. My name is at the top of the Bulletin as editor. Therefore when things go wrong, I must take the responsibility.
I am apologizing for the last Bulletin for two reasons. Somehow or other I never did a final read before publication so it wasn’t until we were ready to mail it out that we noticed the errors on Page 2. In David Hettema’s article, a commentary on the first few verses of Isaiah 60, the two words “seventy sevens” had been changed to “77s” which destroyed the meaning completely. We had a quick discussion; all of us grabbed pens and spent Sunday morning making the corrections on each Bulletin. But that wasn’t the only thing wrong. I made an editorial decision to cut verses in Isaiah 60:5-22 from the article. They are not appearing in this Bulletin with commentary. Please read them on your own. So I am not only apologizing to you, our readers, I am also apologizing to him.
In “Those Turning from the Church Should Turn to Jesus Christ,” No. 4 in the One-A-Day booklet, Otis Q. Sellers says, “. . . the only way I can live out my life as an active believer in the Lord Jesus Christ is to do it apart from all organized religion. This course alone permits me to give Him the preeminence in all things.”
That is the way we live our lives here at The Word of Truth Ministry. Although I will use the word “church,” for communication purposes (like “Sorry, I can’t go with you on Sunday morning; I go to church!”) because that is a word many people understand. I don’t go to a church. I belong to no recognized religion.
I was working with some middle-school students as they studied the Reformation and Martin Luther. All they needed to know was who he was and what he did with the emphasis on just one of his complaints of the church—the selling of indulgences to guarantee salvation. But he had ninety-nine complaints. I wonder how many complaints I could find with organized religion. However, I only need one. And that one is that Jesus Christ is the only mediator between God and man; therefore no church, no organized group of any kind can be a mediator between my God and me.
Sellers, early in his ministry, wrote a small pamphlet called The Churches. He wrote this before he had fully studied the Greek word ekklesia on which he later wrote many studies. But even without the background of the meaning of the word ekklesia, “the out-called ones,” he knew that people in the Christian world related belonging to a church, any church, as the road to salvation. Something like selling “indulgences,” right? In one of his examples he suggested that if you were to ask anyone on the street in a city, “Where can God be found?” he would probably direct you to the nearest church, cathedral, synagogue or mosque. Another example: When a sinner first experiences the feeling that something has to be done about his sins, where does he go? Sellers adds, “If such a man ever comes to the point of full redemption and forgiveness, it will be in spite of the church and not because of it.”
Of course he was accused of wanting to shut down every church. This was not true. All he wanted was for churches NOT to claim “the rights, powers, and privileges that belong to Him alone.” And he closes with this verse from John 3:30: “He must increase—but I must decrease.”
Milton Hammond wrote the following about this little pamphlet and its author: “
Volume 3, No. 7, January 2012Rob2008-10-18T01:09:19+00:00