Dear Associates, Students and Friends:
This month’s newsletter comes from the final chapter of Dr. Martin’s last book, The Essentials of New Testament Doctrine. Many personal problems, even problems in our relationship with God, come from our not knowing and understanding who we are relative to our families, the larger world around us and in the universe of time and space—as children of God. There are many non-biblical ideas and concepts in the world that mistakenly tell us that we should identify ourselves with this family, group, idea, party or organization, when in fact we can know who we are, where we fit and what our future will be. So many people live lives of "quiet desperation" because they feel alone, abandoned, isolated, inadequate, without reference to a solid foundation in their lives. Basically, they don’t know "who they are."
But you can know "who you are." God reveals it. The simple understanding presented in this article will be comforting for many, so that, "the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:7). Read the entire context of that verse in Philippians.
Many fail to notice that this is a direct promise from God the Father to you that he will give you peace—a peace that will allow you to endure trials of life that you never thought possible, and a peace that will allow you to enjoy life to the fullest extent your circumstances allow.
God will give you peace if you do a simple thing. That simple thing you do is "let your requests be made known unto God" (Philippians 2:16). That’s it. It’s that simple. It is a peace that comes from bringing your requests to God, not with an expectation of answers to prayers according to your will, but rather according to the will of God the Father. He promises to give you peace if you do that simple thing. It will not involve any feelings or sensations, but rather a quiet assurance that no matter what happens in your life, God is on the throne and prayer changes things. It will be a quiet understanding of "who you are" in relation to God. It is vitally important for you to realize that "peace" in your life.
How could this be possible? How was this done? Paul wrote to the Gentiles at Ephesus regarding "who they were,"
[Christ Jesus] is our peace, Who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of partition between us [between Jews and Gentiles]; having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in the ordinances; for to make Himself of twain one new man, so making peace; so that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby: and came and preached peace to you which were afar off, and peace to them that were nigh."
• Ephesians 2:14–17
Note that the word "peace" is repeated 4 times in these four verses. (Greek manuscripts have the word "peace" occurring twice in v. 17.) This repetition is intended by Paul to resound in the ears of the Ephesians as they listen to the epistle being read to them. "Peace" occurs 8 times throughout the book of Ephesians. It should come as no surprise that the peace that God promises was made possible through the acts of Christ Jesus. It is hoped that this article gives you some measure of peace by understanding what is your place at this moment in the plan of God. Enjoy!
Read more about the purpose of life in this month's article "Just Who Are You?"
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Future Projects —Productions from archived material of Dr. Martin’s writings are now coming into focus. At least four books on different aspects of prophecy are planned. Collections of a second 101 Bible Secrets are being looked at. A book on Angels will be compiled. And an assembly of articles for a book on one of Dr. Martin’s favorite personal topics—chronology—are being reviewed.
The first book to be put together will deal with material in the prophetic books of the Old Testament, Tape transcripts and portions of booklets and articles will be put together to create a book whose whole is greater than the sum of its parts. This should take about 3 months before it can go to the printer. Publication of the archived material into various collections can be considered the "flesh" on the bones of the main body of Dr. Martin’s work, the major books he wrote during some 27 years of independent writing since 1974.
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Some have asked about David Sielaff, who he is, and what is his background. Allow me to digress into "first person singular" writing. I am age 52 (but still cute as a button), still married to my first young wife; we have two grown daughters. I am a graduate of the University of Wisconsin with a degree in History. I later obtained a graduate degree in Biblical Studies from Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California. While at Fuller and afterwards, for nine years I worked at and eventually supervised the Fuller Word Processing office, typesetting articles, manuscripts, class materials and other professional writings for professors. It was as a student and on the job that I learned what was good scholarship. Since that time I made my living as a typesetter and continued to study biblical matters. I have written only privately published articles.
Religiously I was raised Lutheran, became a member of a Sabbath-keeping group from approximately 1968 to 1973 and discovered the work of Ernest Martin in 1974. I am not a minister (there are far too many of them anyway). In 1983 my wife and I went to Israel on a tour conducted by Dr. Martin, after which I began an increasingly regular contact with him. I began typesetting books for ASK on a contract basis in 1994 with the new edition of Restoring the Original Bible.
It was during his final edits on The Temples That Jerusalem Forgot in the early months of 2000, that Dr. Martin began discussing with me that he would like me to continue his work should anything "happen to him." It was not a discussion I encouraged.
I later suggested to him several books that I could compile for him from his accumulated work, and then he could edit, add or remove whatever he did not like. He could not commit himself to do that because he became involved with the new edition of The Essentials of New Testament Doctrine. I felt most helpful with editing this work because I was more familiar with the doctrinal issues than I was with the ground-breaking research on the Temples of God. Even so, I edited for clarity, not content.
After Essentials Dr. Martin intended to produce a book on angels, and then a book on chronology, all while continuing and strengthening his powerful research about the true site of the Jewish Temples, which would have eventuated in a revised edition and perhaps a second new book on the subject.
Ernest had his plans—God had another plan. I hope to complete those works because Dr. Martin wanted it done.
Dr. Martin was very private in his research and did not discuss on-going projects with me or anyone else except his wife, Ramona. I usually was given articles to review and make comments on just before publication, and manuscripts to edit and typeset just before he was satisfied that this work was nearly finished. However, like so many authors, he felt his books were never finished—except perhaps the latest Essentials. Dr. Martin enjoyed the research more than the writing, but felt that writing clarified the research in his own mind, as well as provided a valuable service to others. I was never able to get him to speculate, or conjecture, or talk about research in-progress. In reviewing his computer records, I have noted that most everything that he was thinking, developing and researching was given to ASK every month. Very little was stored up for future publication, except one article, which is in a very rough state of completion. We’re still trying to work out how to present it properly. Except for that exception, each article was unique and was the latest information from his mind to yours.
On January 16, Ramona phoned me immediately upon Ernest’s death and requested that I come to Portland, and then later return to conduct the graveside service. I was saddened, but happy to help.
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We—Ramona Martin and I—are so grateful for your continued prayers and support that will allow us, God willing, to continue publishing the work of Ernest Martin. It is especially gratifying to know that you are so willing to help, considering that you have your own manifold problems in life to deal with. Just knowing that you are thinking about Dr. Martin, ASK and the incredible body of work he has produced, helps us appreciate your support all the more.
In discussions with Dr. Martin over the years I became aware that to the best of his ability his writings were all written to the glory of God the Father and our elder brother Jesus Christ. That is how it was, and should continue to be. It was Dr. Martin’s desire that as many people as possible have access to his writings. His work deserves the largest possible audience. It is our job to see that desire fulfilled. That is our goal now, and we are greatly encouraged by your help thus far.
David W. Sielaff
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