Exposing the underbelly of Armstrongism in all of its wacky glory! Nothing you read here is made up. Every crazy, weird and wacky quote is straight from the pens of Armstrongite leaders or members who think they possess some insight into God and the Bible. What you read here is the up to date face of Herbert W Armstrong's legacy. It's the gritty and dirty behind the scenes look at Armstrongism as you have never seen it before!
Allwine's most recent sermons were from October on the subjects of "Don't just show up to church" and "The sin of allowing sin" -- both are absent from UCG's website, along with all other info about him.
This was someone who was intending to just melt back into his COG life after murdering his wife, and raising his child as if nothing ever happened while accepting everyone's condolences and sympathies.
A common refrain from COG members who knew the Allwines today, which I have heard from a handful of different people: who else among us is a murderer?
This shatters trust and the bubble has been breached. There's a lot of healing that needs to take place, for both the Allwine family and their church brethren who are in crisis this morning.
I'm eager to see how Victor Kubik, who has landed in Minneapolis, is going to handle this. They've wasted no time jumping on the grenade as news spreads.
I would hope that UCG jumping the gun on this so fast is help the family and church members in the area. But given how Rod Meredith, Ames and others descended on Milwaukee after the LCG murders and what they did and said, we may be hard pressed to see any real truth and accountablity come out of this. This is a high priority now for UCG as the news is spreading like wildfire.
Now that United Church of God has to deal with one of their ministers killing his wife, it will be an opportunity to see how truly Christian the organization really is. Some UCG members are asking if their leaders will be practicing true religion with Stephen Allwine.
Will UCG, COGWA, and Vic Kibik and others visit Stephen Allwine in prison as the Bible they claim to follow exhorts them to do?
Will the UCG and COGWA really step up tot he plate and help provide and care for a child that now has lost two parents? This innocent child was set up to find his dead mother by his sick father. How can a child ever really recover from that? Will UCG care? Does COGWA care?
Over at Banned by HWA, several of the most recent posts on that blog have provoked a great deal of thought about what constitutes a genuine Christian minister. While most of us would readily admit that an adulterer and murderer would not qualify, agreement seems to break down when other issues are considered. In other words, what are the things that qualify a person as a legitimate minister of Jesus Christ? How important are things like gender, training and credentials?
For many Fundamentalists, Paul's statements in some of his epistles about female participation in church services exclude the possibility of that gender serving in the ministry. Of course, that assumption ignores all of the scriptural evidence that contradicts such a conclusion. What about Mary? What about Priscilla? What about Lois and Eunice? Is it correct to exclude half of humanity from participating in the ministry of the church because Jewish society in the First Century had a strong misogynistic and paternalistic bias?
What about the training of the ministry? How did Christ train his apostles? Did he send them to colleges and seminaries? Weren't most of the apostles and ministers of the early church mature individuals who had years of exposure to Christ's teachings and more years of life experiences under their belts? How many young men or recent converts were elevated to the ministry? Is Christianity a spiritual or intellectual exercise? Can love, mercy, grace, forgiveness, patience, kindness, compassion, etc. be learned in a college or seminary? How important is one's understanding of complex theological, philosophical and doctrinal matters to being a successful/effective minister of Jesus Christ?
Does a license from a man-made organization make one a minister of Jesus Christ? Does an appointment by some board or some single individual (like someone claiming to be an apostle or prophet) make one a minister? Does obtaining a degree or completing some course of study qualify one to be a minister of Jesus Christ? Does recognition by the State entitle one to perform the functions of a minister of Jesus Christ? Does the vote of a congregation entitle one to be recognized as such? What kind of official credentials did Peter, John, Barnabas or Paul have?
Didn't Paul say that exceptional character was an essential element in one qualifying to be considered as a legitimate minister of Jesus Christ? Did he have anything to say about the marital status of the individual and the harmony evident within his/her household? Did he say anything about the candidate's reputation in the community at large and within the church? Did he say anything about how the person conducted him/herself in public (e.g. displays of temper and the consumption of alcohol)? Didn't Paul say that the candidate must be able to teach and provide a hospitable/friendly environment? Indeed, even if Paul hadn't (or didn't) write those epistles to Timothy and Titus, wouldn't common sense demand that a minister of Jesus Christ exhibit exceptional character (over and above that of his/her brothers and sisters in the faith)?
And, perhaps the most important consideration of all: What is a minister? Doesn't the very word evoke the word servant? Didn't Christ say that those of his disciples who wanted to be in leadership positions would have to become the servant of the others? Didn't Christ make clear that he didn't want the leaders within his church lording it over each other? Doesn't he use the symbolism of the care and nurture of a shepherd for his/her flock over and over again? Didn't he tell Peter three separate times to feed/take care of his sheep? Were ministers intended to rule? Were minsters intended to be repositories of authority and discipline? What does servant leadership mean?
Hmmmm, when we begin to ask ourselves a few questions about what a Christian minister should look like, it becomes clear to me that many of the denominations, sects and cults who call themselves Christian don't have a clue! Maybe it's time we all take another look at this topic and rethink some of the traditional attitudes that have developed about it? What do you think?
Jerald Walker grew up believing the world would end when he was twelve. His parents—both blind—had joined the Worldwide Church of God at its height in the 1960s. The Church would later prove to be a fraud, its leader collecting hefty dues from its parishioners and using them to fund a lavish celebrity lifestyle. But before Jerald Walker understood this, he came of age believing that The Great Tribulation would transform him, his family, and all believers into gods, and that his parents’ sight would be restored, and so for years, the stringent rules and deprivations within the Worldwide Church of God seemed worth it. When the Great Tribulation did not come, and the family’s faith began to unravel, Walker was left with a life that had no order. The World in Flames: A Black Boyhood in a White Supremacist Doomsday Cult is the story of Walker’s childhood journey through believing, ending in the realization that he will now have to erect an understanding of life from the ground up.
The World in Flames is as hilarious as it is harrowing. Walker’s accounts align so faithfully with his childhood point of view that the reader can see how he managed to believe that a dog bite was a direct punishment from God for wanting to celebrate Christmas, or that “integration”—something the Church forbade—was as bad a sin as “fornication.” And oh, yes, the Church preached slavery as ordained by God, and supported racial separation. How does the black Walker family make sense of that? The dissonance between what young Jerald understands, and what we know he understands later in life, creates instant comic friction.
Rumpus: Your childhood religion was the Worldwide Church of God. Can you tell readers unfamiliar with the Worldwide Church of God what it was all about? Is it still around?
Walker: The Worldwide Church of God was founded by a man named Herbert W. Armstrong in 1933. At the height of its success in the 1970s, it had a membership of over a hundred thousand and annual revenues of eighty million dollars, more than Billy Graham and Oral Roberts combined. Composed of a hodgepodge of religious beliefs, including Levitical dietary restrictions, the observance of “Holy Days,” literal Sabbath-keeping, and the rejection of medical treatment, the underpinning tenet was British-Israelism: the view that Western and Northern Europeans, as direct lineal descendants of the Ten Lost Tribes of Israel, was God’s chosen race. The membership was ruled by fear, intimidation, and threats, such as the assertion that anyone who dared leave the church would endure hardship for the remainder of this life, and eternal suffering in the next. And the next life, according to Armstrong, would arrive in 1975, three years after the start of The Great Tribulation.
When Armstrong died in 1986, leadership of the church fell to Joseph Tkach Jr., who began to move the church away from Armstrong’s teachings to mainstream Christianity. The name of the church was changed to Grace Communion International, and ultimately Armstrong was declared a “heretic” and “false prophet.” Needless to say, many members rejected these changes, and a dozen or so splinter groups formed, some of which adhere to Armstrong’s original teachings.
Rumpus: One thing that differentiates your experience from the experience of a childhood in some other extreme religious communities is that the reader gets hints throughout the book that this religion is not just restrictive and fear-inspiring, but might also be an enormous monetary scam. You and others who grew up within the church and later left it had to come to grips with reevaluating pretty much everything that had previously ordered your life, including the possibility that you and your entire family had been taken advantage of. What role did writing play, if any, in your process of understanding the world after your youth? When did you realize you would be a writer, and when did you realize you would write about your childhood in the form of memoir?
Walker: Writing helps me to understand most everything; in a very real sense it’s how I process my world. My view prior to writing the memoir was that my parents’ decision to join a church run by a con man was inexcusable, and I harbored a bitterness toward them about it that lasted for decades. And so when I began writing the book, I knew there was a real possibility that this bitterness would taint, if not largely shape, the narrative. But I also knew that something else could happen, because for me the process of writing is the process of thinking and learning, of acquiring knowledge more than dispensing it. I wasn’t entirely surprised, then, that by the time I’d completed the book, my bitterness toward my parents had given way to sympathy, understanding, and a deepened respect.
Though I’d been writing stories since I was a child, I didn’t realize I’d be a writer until I took a creative writing course in college. Fiction was my genre of choice, but my stories were always thinly-veiled works of autobiography. My MFA degree is in fiction writing, and for more than a decade after completing the program I continued to write fiction. It wasn’t until about ten years ago that I tried my hand at writing nonfiction, and I fell in love with the form, particularly the essay because it requires the writer to think on the page, which, as I noted, is my wont. I had no intention to write about the cult because I didn’t want to think deeply about it, to reopen those wounds. But the honest truth is that I’m a writer, and my experience in the cult is rich material. Sometimes you have to put the work first, even at a high emotional cost.
Five original publishers/editors of Ambassador Report (AR) are holding an all-day event at The Orleans Hotel in Las Vegas, March 16, 2017. The event will be held on the day the combined three-campus Ambassador College Reunion ends. For the first time the surviving principals of the AR will reveal the behind-the-scenes untold inside story of the making of the AR. For information about attending click here.
Invitational Ambassador Report Private Party, March 16, 2017
Bill Hughes, Jim Lea, Len Zola (509) 342-9040
Welcome to the first Invitational Ambassador Report Private P
arty! Roughly speaking this will
be the 40
(AR). The first three magazine issues were
published in 1976, 1977, and 1978. It
been great fun and my pleasure to speak with every one
of you during verbal invitations this year.
Over these many decades we publishers, friends, and contributo
rs to the AR have enjoyed annual
and biannual gatherings in our homes reminiscing about our
experiences during the bittersweet
days ofwouldhavliked to
have been a fly on the wall at our staff and friends AR
Get a load of this comment that came in on another thread. Can Gerald Flurry and the Philadelphia Church of God truly be this stupid? If it really were true, would it be such a bad thing to chase Six Pack Flurry out of the country? Send him to England where they will accept him with open arms! NOT!!!!!
Yes i was told this as well that they were having a worldwide fast to increase the membership to bring in more money. Yet they keep having these concerts to promote Malone's so called genius and his wife's screeches which they praise to high hills and back. And yet they keep begging the members for more money. I heard that 51% of the church is seniors who are not forced to tithe on fixed income but have been encouraged to work if they are able. They also want members to do more fundraisers. Supposedly in a member/co-worker letter sent out in November he wrote that Obama was only the political Antiochus and that Trump is the modern day Jeroboam who will work with Joe Tkach Jr. The modern day Amaziah priest to chase the PCG OUT OF THE USA and so they will end up in Petra. The members thought Obama was the Jeroboam type as well but when Trump won the election Flurry had new revelation. So now they say Trump will be the last president.
The narcissistic Wonder Boy in Wadsworth is going to make sure that those that don't want to listen to his superfrantabulous message WON'T hear it! Dave feels that his message about the kingdom of heaven is so mind boggling that it is going to cause thousands and thousands of COG members in various splinter groups to suddenly throw off the mantles of their various church leaders and stream into the Restored Church of God.
Sadly though, Dave knows he has detractors out there that refuse to listen to and understand his mind numbing series of sermons (at 59 online now.) The eyes if these detractors are clenched firmly shut so Dave, in fit of anger, is going to make sure they do not hear his message.
We are going to run into enemies going forward. They close their eyes and they’re clenched as tight as people clench their teeth. They don’t want to know, so Christ in effect says…they don’t want to know, so I’m going to make sure they don’t. These things are hidden from them; they are given to the Church. They will not be allowed to know, including even reading simple parables where anybody who stops and thinks should be able to say, wait a minute…a grain of mustard seed…You know, anybody can look up on the Internet and see that picture I showed you. They can read…Wait a minute…concealed it…Wait a minute, you’ve got to find it—got to find it—the field or a pearl—but they don’t. They just don’t. People don’t really read much of any of the Bible with understanding unless God calls them.
Just like the Gnostic's, Dave has received hidden knowledge that he showers the mindless rabble with a bit at a time. So just what is that hidden knowledge?
The Kingdom of God is HERE! In Wadsworth no less!
Now you better understand, brethren around the world, THIS IS THE KINGDOM OF GOD! We’re not announcing it’s coming—we are announcing it’s here—and anybody can come in. It’s harder early on, but great numbers…They’re going to see a column of fire here—they are going to see walls that are impenetrable—they are going to see awesome, powerful miracles—they’re going to learn about there was a resurrection of the dead and mass healing, and all kinds of things…“I want that!” That’s what they are going to say, but the pressure…you know, persecution…or the cares of this life, the cares of the world because it’s still the devil’s world, are going to take some of them out.
And it is just our luck that Dave and his crew of misfits will be our judge!
But a loving God wants to see whosoever will call on the name of the Lord—he’ll be saved. It will still be, in a way, after that—but “you don’t have to obey Me until I say, ‘Oh, now you do. Billions of you—now you do.’” Every nation of the world—boom! And He throws down the governments of the world, and we go into resplendence. We’re the new judges. We’re the new world leaders after three-and-a-half years of confirming the promises to Judah and Israel, and offering and sowing seed in all nations of the world, and there will be people from all nations of the world that respond. That’s why, when the sheep and the goats are described in Matthew 25, it says He gathered before Him all nations. Do you know why all nations? Because the Kingdom had converts in all nations of the world and sadly some are goats; some are sheep…and some came out of the ground, and we’ll explain that at another point.
Remember though this is the first kingdom or dominion that Dave keeps talking about. That is why there will be tares in the midst of Dave's kingdom. Those damn unconverted goats will be running around trying to disrupt Dave's kingdom, but they will have no power over Dave and crew, just those unlucky fellow COG members who did not really believe Dave.
At this point Dave's god will take that pillar of fire and burn those deceived cantankerous COG members to a crisp. After this divine BBQ, a new temple will be built in Jerusalem where Dave will be the first to walk up its steps and great his god.
Dave then gets to another point where his god plays a great cosmic trick on thousands of deceased COG members whom will resurrected by his god. These former COG members who will think they are in the kingdom of God, however they will be in Dave's first dominion because the other kingdom has not yet come. Imagine having to spend 1,000 years ruled by Dave BEFORE you can ever make it into God's kingdom! Hell on earth!
But here is a greater proof…here is the next proof that accompanies that…For decades, thousands and thousands of people in the Philadelphian era that I knew well…pastored many of them…thousands and thousands of people…They’re all coming out of the grave believing they’re in the Kingdom of God. Do you want to tell them they’re not? Do you see? That would be almost…It would be almost like Mr. Armstrong taught false advertising—that I did—that every one of us—that everything we preached at every funeral, everything we said to people as they read the literature…
The resurrection of the dead is into the Kingdom—they all died believing that and they come back and find out they are not in the Kingdom…They didn’t enter the joy of the Lord, but they’ve got another work to do…They’re going to say “I did that! Wait a minute! Well, okay, I’ll do it again, but that’s not what I was taught.” It’s almost as though, for it not to be the Kingdom…Thousands and thousands of people coming out of boxes under stones would come up, and you know what they would feel? They would feel lied to. You need to think about that. It absolutely is the Kingdom of God, but they are going to find out it started differently than they thought.
Dave and his crew will have to spend a long time trying to convince all these deceased members that they are in his kingdom and not in the Kingdom of God. What a pisser that will be, but not for long!
When these former members are told they will get to rule over millions of people they will be soooooooo excited. It is better to rule millions than it will be to rule a few thousands who survive the slaughter fest before the Kingdom of God really comes.
But when they find out they’re rulers and leaders in it, they’re going to say, “Great! What do I have to do? I’m in the Kingdom. I’ve achieved salvation.” They might be a little more excited knowing there are billions of people that they can work with, as opposed to a few millions who survived going into the 1,000 years. I mean it’s really…it’s going to be a shock to find out the Kingdom is much smaller but the mission field—which is the world—is infinitely bigger than they might have thought, if they thought maybe there’s only ten percent of the whole world surviving—which is what we used to think…They will be absolutely thrilled—it’s a few ten thousands leading billions—and they’re in. They’ll be thrilled to death.
Isn't it wonderful to be a Church of God member and know this secret knowledge!
Just when you think Armstrongites can't get any crazier. A Church of Malm member writes:
With regards to Stephen Allwine, I would like to ask that the members of this site pray that the whole truth of this matter is revealed.
After reading accounts of what evidence was reported, I am left with the distinct feeling that the story is preposterous and an attack on all God’s people. This story from the the Twin Cities is getting coverage nationwide.
None of what has been reported makes any sense, and there are more questions than answers.
Why would an IT professional use a site that was recently famous for it’s database being hacked for user information?
Why would someone spend so much time to seek an assassin for hire only to commit the murder in such a careless way making it certain to be caught?
Why bother with the memory loss drug when the object was to kill the person?
We know the congregation will come under extreme persecution soon, and framing the brethren is not out of the question.
No need to editorialize the absurdities of Wade Cox. He does a fantastic job making a fool of himself.
The Churches of God and the leaders of the Nations of Israel will be held to account and brought into captivity for their sins and their idolatry. The Churches of God that do not repent will not enter the First Resurrection. They will be dealt with by Christ on his arrival and those that do not repent will be killed on an ongoing basis until they repent.
God had placed the Solar system into preparation for the sins of the nations of Israel. The observers of the sun and its effect on the weather knew that there was to be a long drought over 19 years in AU and it would begin with a flood in the south. In January 1978 there was a flood from 22 January to 28 January. After that flood the intermittent drought began and lasted over 19 years to 1997. This was to end before the Sacred year of 1997 which was the beginning of the Thirty Years of the Mourning for Moses at the end of the Time of the Gentiles (See the paper The Outline Timetable of the Age (No. 272)).
After the failure to keep the Sabbath Year of 1976 and the election of President Carter in the US whose term began on 20 January 1977 they were faced with Globalist stooges. Carter gave away the gates of the US to their enemies. In 1981 he was replaced by Ronald Reagan (20 Jan. 1981 to 20 Jan. 1989). In that period he took financial action against the USSR and established a number of preconditions for the Globalists.
George H. W. Bush was president from 20 Jan.1989 to 20 Jan. 1993. He invaded Iraq in Operation Desert Storm, for improper reasons. However, he did leave with Hussein alive. He was a Globalist puppet who declared the formation of the New World Order (NWO) at the UN. This was to be of significance to the world and later (see the UN declaration of the Agenda 2030).
He was defeated by William Clinton as president from 20 Jan. 1989 to 20 Jan. 1997. In the period from Reagan and Clinton the Russians were destroyed and the Soviet Union collapsed and its banks were placed in the hands of the Rothschilds. Over the same time and through the Clinton Administration the Dot. Com crisis was developed and the entire US system was set up to collapse economically, with each crisis to erupt at the end of the previous administration and enable the transfer of funds through the US printing of money and increasing debts to the Federal Reserve, a corporation owned by the six major banks under control of the Rothschilds. At the close of the Clinton administration, the financial crises began growing and Bush was instrumental in establishing the 9/11 crisis and the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq. By the close of his administration the GFC of 2008 had been orchestrated and Obama was left with the task of printing trillions of dollars and increasing the US national debt by 10 Trillion dollars or double and creating massive pools of underground money throughout the world. He undermined the financial integrity and the military capacity of the US and its internal security. He will in time come to be seen as a fake president who in his terms of office did more damage to the US people than any person in their history. The final financial collapse was organised for end 2016 and the War of the Sixth Trumpet was to be undertaken using the US and the DNC controlled process. However Clinton was thwarted by the election of Trump in the US, and with the Brexit in UK being prepared the nationalist overthrow of the Globalist Communists became a real possibility.
In the 39th year of the 120th Jubilee, God decided to tear the face off this charade and the wilful destruction of His people by those who say they are Jews and are not. The Globalists were seen for what they are both in the UK when the Brexit was forced through and won by its supporters against all the lies and false media propaganda of the Globalists and the EU bureaucrats and the US over the election for the 45th President.
The vials of the wrath of God will be inflicted on all nations until each nation repents. They will be forced to keep the Sabbaths and the New Moons or they will die (Isa. 66:23). In the same way they will be required to send their representatives to Jerusalem each year or they will be punished with no rain in due season and the plagues of Egypt. They will be required to send their reps in 2025 and keep the Sabbath Year of 2026 for the Reading of the Law, and also for the Jubilee in 2027 (see Lev. 25 and Zech. 14:16-19): Then for each year thereafter for the millennium.
Every nation will be required to do what they are told or they will have the punishments inflicted upon them. Men will die in vast numbers and become rarer than the golden wedge of Ophir. There will be approx. 200- 500 million humans left alive by the harvest. The disobedient will simply die before the Millennium. Only those who repent will be allowed to go into the Millennium.
You may feel the need to use this after reading this load of bullshit....here: Sabbath 24/11/39/120 (This is the kind of garbage he preaches regularly on his fake Muslim sabbath. No Jesus but loads of bullshit.)
"I want to make a statement about...me...now, if I became deceived, I will never tell you what I'm going to tell you now...I am telling youif I go off into strange ideas, misconduct, rebellion, you name it, don't follow me. I want to tell you that now, because if I start doing that I'm gonna try to get you to follow me! I'm gonna come to you and tell you it doesn't apply, it doesn't mean me, no, no, no, no, no, no, it's OK to follow me because ABCD and XY and Z. Do you understand what I'm saying? Listen to me now, when I tell you don't follow me if I go off into weird ideas, or if I get off into other things that are total absolutely unscriptural conduct,because if I do I'm gonna paint it with a different face and try to get you to follow me. Do you understand what I'm saying brethren? Please remember that, because I promise you that if I become deceived, I'll forget it, and I'll want you to forget it...And I hope you'll remember it well enough to quote it right back to me...But I'll tell you what, I'm not going anywhere."
"Let me just summarize it. From the time I was a little boy, under Randall and Jane Pack, and believe me, if you knew them, they were powerful in logic, debate, and analysis. My mother was the Debate Champion for years, brilliant woman. My father was a very intelligent, master salesman. And they taught me the rules of logic and analysis. From the time I was a small boy, my mother would make me look words up. So, uh, understanding the nature of words from the time I was little— very little— when I... , we had about a six or eight-inch thick dictionary, remember those big ones? And my uncle, a Britannica, sent us one time for Christmas one time, and I'd go through it those— I think I'd told you that story... And God says, "Come, let's reason together." And I love to reason and analyze, and whoever had this role at the end of the age would have had to be the one just— who never rests. My mother said from the time I was born, my mind never rested. It just never does. It was always going, all the time. Sometimes I'm going on other things when I'm talking, and that's just the way I am. Someone would have to come along and explain and re-explain prophecy, the Apostasy, hundreds of doctrines, and write them up and points, and all kinds of analysis and logic. So let's just look at some logic. My mother would never let me get away with bad logic ..."
"You know what my suggestion to you is? Don't leave the church! Stay in the church. Stay in the Temple of God. Continue doing the Work; continue under God's government. Don't compromise, don't leave; don't go anywhere. The signal is coming here. It's only the people of God that go to the place of safety. Why would God tell anybody else?? Why would He send a signal that's broader than the church, when it's something that only involves the church? Why would He put it on a bulletin board with neon signs across the world telling the church to flee? He [Christ] would tell the church— that's who He's working with— He's not working with other people!"
"We get a signal nobody else gets. It can't be any other way. So the official position of the Restored Church of God— the official position is that "You can't know." But the official position is, "It's okay because you're guaranteed to get the signal if you don't leave the church, you don't leave God's government, you remain a living stone, waiting, enduring patiently doing God's Work. You're guaranteed to know! And that's the official position of the church."
"How do you know whether a miracle is from Satan or a miracle is from God? Well, the only true miracles occur within the Body of Christ where the gift of miracles has occurred...[stutters] is given. If the miracle is "true" it will happen in the Restored Church of God. All other miracles occurring anywhere on earth will be false"
...We're not talking about a special offering here...This is different...This is in faith— making the decision with you and your wife on your knees with your Bible open, asking for faith and strength, the faith to liquidate certain existing assets and give them to the Work! We are ready to trumpet now! Will you copy my wife? Will you be followers of her and me?...
"If you hold those riches, I'm telling you, you trust in them! ...I am charged by God, reading this verse to charge all of you out there in the Work, in the church, who have assets. You have a home that's paid off? Go get a big chunk out of your home and put your money where your mouth is and send it here! And I'm not talking one, two, three thousand either! How about ten, twenty, thirty, fifty, a hundred thousand dollars— Go do it!! Woo hoo, Mr. Pack, you got serious! You haven't heard anything yet— keep listening. "
"The Work needs the funds now, not when I can maximize personal benefit and help the Work! Now there could be penalties. That's life! It's better that the Work gets 75% or 50% of something, as opposed to waiting 3, 5, 7, 10 years, or never getting it at all— but getting 100% of it— which could be 100% of nothing! One percent of something beats a 100% of nothing, or even getting it too late to do anything. "Well, I'll lose to taxes." Well, if you die, or all kinds of ways you can outlive the time left, waiting to save on taxes. But even if you die a couple of years before dying, there's Probating the Will, and then we haven't time to spend it. Think big! Don't just squander the money! Or pay penalties as you pull a 401K, or whatever, or other assets— don't squander! Pull big triggers! Think big! A little bit of planning can help." "The worst that can happen, and I'm prepared for this— is that you run it all the way up, and then you have to amortize it in a term loan after 10 or 20 years. It requires some faith, but not a lot. Now you just have a second mortgage instead of an Equity Line. It's converted into a term loan, paid over a period of 10 or 20 years, starting in 10 or 20 years. It's what I've done. I'm prepared to do it. And then, frankly, we flee before most of it ever comes due. That's just the way it is." Proverbs 20:6. Most men— not all— some will just be faithful...We've had people come and voluntarily promise to send in assets. Some have even said "These assets belong to God" then compared themselves to *Ananias and Sapphira that they didn't get it here. [Uses loud, chastising voice] Wait until they see how they've offended God when they don't do it!! My counsel to them and to all others who've made promises to God, even to God privately, "Go get those assets and get them here!! You're kidding yourself if you think you're going to be in the Kingdom of God!! ...[Uses sarcastic, demeaning voice] "Oh, you can count on me!" and then they're not here. They don't show up...You know if you've opened your mouth and said you're going to give something then you better give it. I know there are different circumstances in different nations, brethren, and I know that. There are certain hoops you have to jump through. Maybe you get taxed for a certain amount you give. And you know what? Jump through the hoops! Don't sit on vast resources we can use now! I'll tell you more about what we want to do in just a moment."
* Opinion: Dave... The story of Ananias and Sapphira waas a personal slam, the church under Paul , would have gotten, on Peter, who Paul felt was just as bad as Judas. Judas betrayed Jesus and Peter denied him. No diff. The parody is that here are two poor folk who promised one thing, to give all, and did another, held back being condemned by the Great Peter, who promised one thing, "I will never leave you Jesus", and did another, ran like hell. Don't follow Peter. I always had my doubts one could literally kill church members and have no one inquire about "where are my parents?" or "My relatives came to your church and never came home." I doubt the Romans would have let that pass either. "If you say you're going to do something, do it!! Neither say it was in error. "I didn't mean to say it!" You know what? You said it! Don't say, "It was an error! I'm sorry! It was a mistake!" "I'll do this, I'll do that" then you don't do it. Fear your God! You uttered it, do it!! Saying it is not good enough, and that includes what you privately say in prayers!" "There are others who don't pay third tithe. The church is not obligated to spend third tithe caring for the brethren that we do not receive. You are required— it is a command to you— every third and sixth year in a seven-year cycle, to send third tithe in and care for your brethren..." "It's all going to be taken away from us anyway, brethren. Do you want to give it up in advance— some of it— while you can have great reward— or do you want to hold on to it, and lose it anyway because thieves are going to get at it unless you don't believe Christ?You aren't going where you think you're going. And that may include the Kingdom of God, by the way." "I've talked about using a Home Equity Line that I've used many times. And there are ways to do this. This is not something that's pie in the sky. Home Equity Line is for people who have a lot of equity in their home, or maybe have their home paid off. It's a great way to advance funds to the Work. You can also leave enough in the Equity Line, which could, in affect, for years – make your payment for you – so you literally don't feel it. For instance, you can get 20, 30, 40, 50 thousand dollars— or much more— and never feel a payment for years because you're also making your payments out of the Equity Line. I have done that. It allowed me to give a lot and never feel it. It takes faith..."
" I have no equity essentially in my home. My Home Equity Line is basically maxed. I have a huge payment, [but it] doesn't bother me. I'm in the middle of an appraisal. I literally have no money. I have no debts except that Home Equity Line which is colossal in size."
"I'm left with a great big, many hundreds of dollars a month, coming out of my pocket that I will be stuck with for the rest of my life— no health insurance, just remember, lost my wife's salary same time I had to borrow every dime to bury her. I don't want a dime...I'm not asking for any. I'll be fine."
" Wives, you can be independent in this. You have half the worth in whatever is there in your house. I'm officially telling all of you, read verses 17, 18, 19 and focus on it. Wives you have an independent voice. Legally you have half the funds. What are you going to do about it?" (Unless wifey is not in the church....) "Husbands, your wife, "Well, my wife isn't in the church. She doesn't want me to do it." You know what? Tell her,"You don't have a voice, woman."She might say, "Well, I disagree" and she might fight ya, but, well then, that's what happens..."
" Now some would say, "Well, I have to leave everything to my husband or my wife." Again, my question is, "Why?" Leave enough so that they're cared for, whether in or out of the faith? "Well I just feel that I should leave my Lutheran wife everything," somebody might say. Why??? Get over that feeling!!! That's what Satan wants you to do!!! He would absolutely agree with your decision. God wouldn't agree with it. "Well my wife's in the faith. I'll just leave it to her and trust her." Well, wait a minute! She'd be the first to tell you to "Give it now— don't leave anymore than what I need." If she doesn't say that, then she's not in the faith, she's just sitting here warming a seat. The wife, in the faith, will say, "Give everything we can. Leave just enough for me."
"Now let's talk about Wills. Naming the Restored Church of God in your Will sometimes might cause an individual to think they're doing the right thing. That's good, that's wonderful. But they feel comfortable that they've done their part. Think about it. How much faith does that require? The Church gets everything when you die and you don't need it anymore? Where did you sacrifice anything?? Now again, that's a nice thought. But all you're saying is since you're dead you don't need anymore financial security. No faith. Get it now— When it requires faith. When you're dead you don't need it. We have people who have hundreds upon hundreds of thousands of dollars— some even millions— they're telling us they're going to give us in Wills. We're kind of put in a funny position when you think this through. Do we pray that people die so we can get it? We can't do that! I'm going to get an inheritance from my uncle some day. I don't pray that he dies— I can't do that...Don't put God in the position where you have to die, where He must say "I need that money" and you won't turn loose of it now. If you named us in your Will, it could take months or years, particularly if there's litigation before we have it. Think it through... "
"We live in a strange, different, final generation—final generation. Don't look for excuses to hold on to your treasure! We don't have the luxury of waiting years...Today, leaving everything in your Will doesn't work!"
" If God boomed from heaven to go the place of safety—"You must do this!"—meaning, "empty your assets!" there would be no test of faith! The test is whether you believe the human servant, or servants, His Headquarters, that God is using. That's the way God always works. God works through flesh and hence the test of faith."
"If you send funds, or a great deal is sent collectively around the world, let's be careful that we don't grow a voice suddenly in how it should be spent...When you give, it belongs to God. It's like tithes. You don't come after you give and tell God and His servants how to spend it. The church has to be the judge of how to do that."
How NOT to Study The Bible (Or at least which scriptures not to use explaining how)
Isa 28:10 (KJV) For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little.
Isa 28:13 (KJV) ...precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little...
The above scriptures, very familiar to all COG ministers and members alike, have been misquoted , misused and misunderstood for decades. Ministers of every denomination quote them when asked "just how should we study the Bible?" It is taken to mean that one studies the Bible line by line, topic by topic, skipping over here and then over there to find similar ideas and phrases that one can simply stitch together and come up with God's eternal truths on all things. The modern term might be called "Proof Texting". I sat through most of an intolerable "Refresher" once where the evangelist type took his Nave's Topical Bible and starting in Genesis and taking us on an agonizing trip through the Bible to Revelation on the topic of marriage, simply drove all in attendance to near mental illness. That is not how to study the Bible which is, in fact, one of the most over studied and over analyzed books on the planet.
In our common COG experience we have the Dave Packs, Gerald Flurrys, Ron Weinland types along with the bit players in the form of James Malm, E.W.King and Bob Thiel who employ this tip toeing through the Bible , "here a little, there a little, line upon line, precept upon precept " and coming up with pure trash and self righteous drivel instructing good men everywhere how they must live and how they must think on these amazingly studied topics.
Dave Pack can wander all over the Bible, Old Testament and New and come up with his weird and strange ideas about himself as spoken of by the Prophet Haggai, like anyone ever heard of Haggai, and get members gyrating in their seats. E.W.King and James Malm can just make shit up as they go and find picky answers to ridiculous questions with the hunt and peck method of study. Bob Thiel can spend all day making Bronze Age weather explanations the modern day ones and tell us it is how God "tries" to get our attention. They all do by looking here a little and there a little, putting line upon line together and coming up with weird and strange explanations galore.
...and they are wrong.
Let's set the record straight.
To begin with, Isaiah is written to the drunken priests of Ephraim. I know "context" is not a word most COG ministers are familiar with, but context is important. In verse 7 we see the priests and prophets are being chided, to say the least, for being drunk with beer and wine, befuddled and stumbling while they are seeing visions and making rather important decisions. Not exactly the way to go but with the Assyrians beating on the door, understandable.
7 And these also stagger from wine andreel from beer: Priests and prophetsstagger from beer and are befuddled with wine; they reel from beer, they stagger when seeing visions, they stumble when rendering decisions. 8 All the tables are covered with vomit and there is not a spot without filth.
Not a very pleasant sight but I suppose we can credit the Priests and Prophets of Isaiah with the discovery of "Reel Beer."
In reality, it is Isaiah mocking these fools with the following which has been taken as "here a little, there a little, line up line, precept upon precept" and how to study the Bible. Unbelievable ignorance really...
9 “Who is it he is trying to teach? To whom is he explaining his message?to those just taken from the breast? To children weaned from their milk, 10 For it is: Do this, do that, a rule for this, a rule for that[a]; a little here, a little there.”
Who are you talking to? Children? You sound like children. blah, blah, blah, nah nah-nah nah nah, do this, do that, rules here, rules there. Hunt and peck all over the place for your rules. Who do you think you are? James Malm? Dave Pack, E. W. King, Gerald Flurry, Ron Weinland??? (OK, I added that part)
In the original Hebrew the phrase in Isaiah 28 verses 10 and 13 is: "sav lasav sav lasav, kav lakav kav lakav" It is pure gibberish and akin to our "la la la la" and "blah blah blah." It is a mocking tone immitating the drunken gibberish of the priests and prophets of Ephraim and Judah as Assyria knocks at the door to scrape them off the earth. It is NOT a scripture one should use to teach how to study the Bible that's for SURE!
13 So then, the word of the Lord to them will become: Do this, do that, a rule for this, a rule for that; a little here, a little there— so that as they go they will fall backward; they will be injured and snared and captured.
14 Therefore hear the word of the Lord, you scoffers who rule this people in Jerusalem.
So then mister priest and prophet, if that's the way you want to teach then that's the way the Lord will teach you. Blah...blah...blah...nah nah nah nah nah...do this, do that. You like rules? I got rules! You will be over run by your enemies, you who rule Jerusalem. Assyria and the Babylonians are going to kick your ass if you aren't careful. But it all works out eventually so have at it.
So, there we have it. Short and simple. The next time you hear a Church of God Minister, Member or any devotee tell you that you study the Bible, "line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little, there a little," just slap your head and explain it to them.
Things are not rosy in Arroyo Grande this evening. Almost arrested Elisha Elijah Joshua Amos Habakkuk Bob Thiel is not taking too kindly to Dennis Diehl. The apostate self appointed false prophet Habakkuk Thiel had this to say:
Former Worldwide Church of God minister Dennis Diehl has a history of posting negative comments about me over at the Banned by HWA website.
Of course, he is not alone in this. Many apostates and unbelievers at that website have done the same. And for people “whose minds the god of this age has blinded” (2 Corinthians 4:4), will not believe.
But I thought that perhaps readers would like to see some of what Dennis Diehl posted concerning biblical interpretation and why the approach used at the COGwriter and CCOG websites is correct.
DennisCDiehl said… “For I will work a work IN YOUR DAYS Which you would not believe, though it were told you. 6 For indeed I am raising up the Chaldeans, A bitter and hasty nation Which marches through the breadth of the earth, To possess dwelling places that are not theirs”
Context, context, context
The apostate self appointed leader of the improperly named "continuing" Church of God did not take too kindly to Dennis emphasizing the "in your days" in the above Bible quote. How dare Dennis imply that apostate Thiel might be wrong.
Notice how Dennis Diehl emphasized the words IN YOUR DAYS related to Habakkuk 1:5 (which my article quoted) and emphasized context.
His implication is that Habakkuk’s message was only for his day and my writing that we need to pay attention to Habakkuk’s message today is essentially unfounded.
Could Dennis Diehl be correct about this?
Because there are other scriptures that demonstrate otherwise. For example, the Apostle Paul quoted Habakkuk 1:5 as having applicability centuries after Habakkuk died:
41 ‘Behold, you despisers, Marvel and perish! For I work a work in your days, A work which you will by no means believe, Though one were to declare it to you.‘” (Acts 13:41)
The self appointed apostate then gets all pissy because Dennis and the rest of us refuse to acknowledge that he is a prophet and despise his prophecies because we all supposedly do not understand "doctrine." We have all seen over the many decades of the church how doctrine was bastardized and turned into the most dangerous weapons imaginable. People have literally died in the church because of lying prophets, evangelists, ministers and "pastor generals" saying things they knew nothing about or taught aberrant doctrines.
Yet, many, sadly, do despise prophecies, including those from Habakkuk.
As far as Habakkuk goes, he also was told by God that he was writing prophecies for the appointed time of the end:
2 Then the Lord answered me and said: “Write the vision And make it plain on tablets, That he may run who reads it. 3 For the vision is yet for an appointed time; But at the end it will speak, and it will not lie. Though it tarries, wait for it; Because it will surely come, It will not tarry. 4 “Behold the proud, His soul is not upright in him; But the just shall live by his faith. (Habakkuk 2:2-4)
Dennis Diehl, and many others, have ignored and/or despised the following instructions as to how to understand doctrine:
9 Whom shall he teach knowledge? and whom shall he make to understand doctrine? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts. 10 For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little: (Isaiah 28:9-10, KJV) 16 All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work. (2 Timothy 3:16-17)
The doubly blessed dream weaver then really took umbrage at Dennis lumping the apostate false prophet in with the theologically bankrupt ministers like Meredith, Flurry and Pack. How dare Dennis do such a thing! Amos Thiel is God's end time personally appointed prophet of the "truth once delivered." Even worse, Dennis pointed out how poorly trained Habakkuk Thiel is in exegesis and Christology. How can a person who waves his big thick Bible not know anything about it? Elisha Thiel cannot understand how he can be so theologically bankrupt.
Not satisfied to comment about my position on Habakkuk, Dennis Diehl later (1/18/17) lumped me in with a bunch of others, and posted the following at the Banned by HWA:
The hard facts are that the neither the original ministry of the Worldwide Church of God nor ANY of the resulting leadership/ministry of the splits, splinters and slivers, to this day, were properly trained in theological studies and it shows in everything from exegesis to their Christology. Their hermeneutics aren’t all that good either. Men such as Gerald Flurry, Dave Pack, Rod Meredith and Bob Thiel are “mere Bible readers”, as are the members, and are proof texters jumping around the Bible to conjure up their beliefs like the proverbial cat on a hot tin roof. They have no clue that their “here a little, there a little” is not the formula for how to arrive at the message of the Bible. Line Upon Line: How NOT to Study The Bible All of what Gerald Flurry, David C Pack, Roderick Meredith and Bob Thiel believe with regards to their unique selves and their message is simply bogus theology.
Apostate Thiel then has to defend his theological "training" that far exceeds any other ministers in the church, even though it comes from a diploma mill in India and a few selected classes at Fuller and elsewhere. No real theological training. No training in counseling. Nothing other than Herbert Armstrong booklets and articles. We have all seen how well that "training" has worked over the last 8 decades. The self-appointed false prophet then makes the excuse that schooling in a real seminary is not worthwhile.
But Dennis Diehl’s position that attending the world’s theological institutions is what ministers need to do is simply not consistent with the Bible.
It should also be mentioned that nearly all who have gone through the world’s theological seminaries have not properly learned how to interpret the Bible.
That last paragraph is a very accurate description of what has happened to everyone that went through Ambassador College learning theology. Not a single one of them ever learned how to interpret the Bible. Just imagine had Amos Thiel actually graduated from Ambassador, he would be worse than he is now! Then the apostate goes on to whine about the church rejecting Herbert's teachings and embracing Christmas, Jesus and birthdays. Those damn birthdays! How dare people celebrate birthdays! Herbert did, but that doesn't seem to matter. The doubly blessed false prophet then gets to the gist of the matter:
What is my point?
While education can have value, ignoring the biblical admonition to look here a little and there a little to learn doctrine is appropriate.
Should you rely on the Bible and facts to understand doctrine or ‘traditions of men‘?
Dennis Diehl is really advocating the latter, whereas I, Bob Thiel (aka COGwriter) advocate the former.
Using the Bible to interpret itself is a proper Christian ‘hermeneutic’ and is endorsed by scripture (Isaiah 28:9-10; Acts 17:10-13, 2 Timothy 2:15, 3:16-17).
Dennis Diehl and other anti-Church of God critics remain in my prayers.
For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept,
line upon line, line upon line,
here a little, there a little"
If you don't know the above scripture, then you can not have been part of the Worldwide Church of God or a current member of its many splinter and sliver groups. This scripture ranks right up there with, "The heart of man is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked, who can know it," and "So how did you come into the truth?"
Many fundamentalists misuse this scripture in Isaiah thinking it is the key to understanding just how to unlock the mysteries of doctrine and truth or to solve the puzzle that God has put before us to figure out. If we only study our Bibles taking a little from here and a little from there, properly combining the elements in to the true right and correct picture, we win!!! It implies that truth is found scattered throughout the Bible and one simply needs to prooftext their way through the pages of the Bible properly, and the truth shall set them free.
That's the good news. The bad news is that it has NOTHING to do with how to study your Bible. Lets look at this scripture in context. I know, I know...but give it a try anyway...
7 And these (Prophets and Priests) also stagger from wine and reel from beer: Priests and prophets stagger from beer and are befuddled with wine; they reel from beer, they stagger when seeing visions, they stumble when rendering decisions. 8 All the tables are covered with vomit and there is not a spot without filth.
9“Who is it he is trying to teach? To whom is he explaining his message? To children weaned from their milk, to those just taken from the breast? 10 For it is: Do this, do that, a rule for this, a rule for that[a]; a little here, a little there.”
11 Very well then, with foreign lips and strange tongues God will speak to this people, 12 to whom he said, “This is the resting place, let the weary rest”; and, “This is the place of repose”— but they would not listen. 13 So then, the word of the LORD to them will become: Do this, do that, a rule for this, a rule for that; a little here, a little there— so that as they go they will fall backward; they will be injured and snared and captured
What we're seeing here is God mocking the priests and mimicking their drunken rules and laws that they give the people. God is not paying them a compliment but it is rather like God saying they go "blah blah blah," or talk like whining children in their drunken state. It has nothing to do with some profound teaching on the correct way to cobble the scriptures together to come up with truth. They teach the people like they are children and this is not a compliment.
Isaiah then goes on to say that God can play that game too if they wish, and will tell them to "do this, do that, a bit here, a bit there," and they will fall backwards and be overcome by God. In other words, God can take the childish, "blah blah blah" out of their way of teaching and knock them out some of his own.
Barnes Commentary notes:
"For precept must be upon precept - This is probably designed to ridicule the concise and sententious manner of the prophets, and especially the fact that they dwelt much upon the same elementary truths of religion. In teaching children we are obliged to do it by often repeating the same simple lesson. So the profane and scoffing teachers of the people said it had been with the prophets of God. It had been precept upon precept, and line upon line, in the same way as children had been instructed. The meaning is, 'there is a constant repetition of the command, without ornament, imagery, or illustration; without an appeal to our understanding, or respect for our reason; it is simply one mandate after another, just as lessons are inculcated upon children.'
Line upon line - This word (קו qav), properly means "a cord, a line;" particularly a measuring cord or line (2 Kings 21:13; Ezekiel 47:13; see the note at Isaiah 18:2). Here it seems to be used in the sense of "a rule,""law," or "precept." Grotius thinks that the idea is taken from schoolmasters who instruct their pupils by making lines or marks for them which they are to trace or imitate. There is a repetition of similar sounds in the Hebrew in this verse which cannot be conveyed in a translation, and which shows their contempt in a much more striking manner than any version could do -"
While perhaps not the most recommended translation, this one has captured, in this case the intent of the scripture.
So the next time your Pastor says, "We know how we are study God's word. It is line upon line, precept upon precept. Here a little, There a little, and God will reveal his truth to us, his chosen ones," just say "ummmm, no....that's not what that means."
God doesn't have a puzzle to solve and the true people are not defined as those who know how the puzzle all fits together by jumping around the Bible looking for the proof for their all too often human perceptions. You certainly cannot use this scripture in Isaiah to do that as if it was how God reveals truth.
UCG brass met with their brethren in the Twin Cities today to discuss the tragic Allwine murder case.
Reports from people who attended today's special UCG Twin Cities meeting about the Allwine case:
1. UCG is "not taking sides" in this case.
2. BUT Steve Allwine has been stripped of his eldership and isn't allowed back to church.
3. Amy's family has taken custody of their 9-year-old son.
4. Allwine's family has raised his bail, reportedly. I'm told he could be out of jail this week.
5. Steve Allwine will be pleading not guilty at his February hearing.
6. Some believe he is smart enough to get away with this. This is someone who "takes pride in gaming the system" in daily life, a self-styled lifehacker with a high opinion of his own intellect.
7. While to the layperson, this looks like an open and shut case, if he manages to sow enough reasonable doubt in the state's case, this trial could go sideways. While they do have definitive evidence that Amy was murdered, showing it was Steve beyond a reasonable doubt may prove more difficult.
8. That said, first degree murder charges could be forthcoming once the state assembles a grand jury. Second degree is all they could initially charge him with due to the nature of what they could directly pin on him and what they can't, along with state protocol. But in Minnesota, a grand jury makes the determination to slap someone with first degree murder charges. First degree murder in Minnesota is a life sentence if found guilty.
9. Most in the congregation are sad, aghast, confused and hurt amid this crisis. But above all, there is palpable anger over this betrayal.
Lets see how long it takes for James Malm to copy these specific points and post them as if he received the information.
"Ignore-ance , that which you ignore, is not just what you don't know...it's also what you won't know."
We don't really know each other but I feel I do know the how and why of your theological thinking. I spent three decades thinking , processing and explaining the Bible , for the most part minus the specialness of me personally as spoken of in the scriptures, as you do. I used to believe that the way to crack the Bible Code was to hunt and cobble scripture together, from both Old and New Testaments in the traditional misapplication of the concept of , "line upon line, precept upon precept. Here a little there a little." I have explained to you , and former colleagues, to the best of my own understanding, how HWA and the Churches of God ministry have misunderstood and misapplied the scripture. I realize "I was mistaken" is not in the vocabulary of the Church or it's leaders for the most part, but in this you and they are mistaken.
Art Mokarrow once chided me for speaking as if I knew better than he and spoke with too much confidence, as I assume any man would on any topic he believed in. When I pointed out to him that it was he that had written a book entitled "God's Puzzle Solved!" and that when one uses the words "God's", "puzzle" and "solved" in the same sentence, that can be construed as believing one knows everything themselves and may be on the edge of a bit too much confidence. He just said, "Well, that's not what I mean."
But that's exactly what he meant.
I know you are sincere in your beliefs as I am in mine and all others in theirs. But some Church of God ministers make incredibly bold and self centered claims about themselves and actually see themselves spoken of in the scriptures and always the Old Testament. Gerald Flurry does. Dave Pack certainly does and you seem to by your own words at times. Herbert W. Armstrong started this concept rolling with his own perceptions of himself and promoted to the extreme by men such as Gerald Waterhouse, both of whom are now long deceased with Flurry and Pack building their ridiculous religious foundations on the wood, hay and stubble of HWA's self concept.
At any rate, because of the dangers many perceive in the ministries like Gerald Flurry's and Dave Pack's, it is important to keep it all in the public eye for consideration and rejection if need be for mental, emotional and theological safety's sake.
When I lived on the east coast, I offered to "debate" Dave Pack on anything from his self concept of he seeing himself spoken of in the scriptures to creationism vs evolution. But, alas, Dave only bombasts from behind the walls of Wadsworth Castle. I do admit to being impressed with how well Dave was easily dismantled by good science done well as explained to him by the series challenging his "Irrefutable Proofs of God."
And now I live on the Pacific Northwest Coast, mere blocks from the library HWA spent "six months of intensive study" and three blocks from the church he went to be baptised in.
You have dismissed the truth of evolution(as I would expect you to do with a mere 6000 year old template and literalist view) and good science done well with your four easy points that disprove evolution, but you have to know that dismissing such highly studied science such as paleontology and human origins are not easily dismissed in four simple ways unless you are preaching to the choir who have no idea themselves how to explain your four simple points. Send your four points to Dr. Neil DeGrasse Tyson and see how that goes for you. I have found the puzzle solving , code breaking and simple points to refuting complex topics to be found wanting personally.
I have forwarded your for simple points to Aron Ra, who did the series on Dave Pack's series on The Irrefutable God so he may or may not take the time to respond as only he can. Stay tuned.
All that to say, let's discuss these matters and reason together for fun and clarity . Perhaps in front of your local church, or in your own studio, transcribed and video taped as I did with Art Mokarrow in Tyler a few years back and sponsored by The Journal? I don't claim to be an expert in these matters, but they have caught my attention for the past 30 years spending time on both sides of these issues. Let's call it a public discussion and not even a debate. No one has to win, nor would they as sides taken don't change much as we know until personal factors and issues resolve themselves in the mind of each individual over years of consideration and experience.
I was sent a link to a story that I had read earlier in the day about a man and his son who have asked to represent themselves in court themselves in court using the Bible to justify their crimes. While much of our government and legal system lightly base their standards on Christian principles many as asking if this is appropriate in this case. Here is an interesting quote about the use of the Bible in legal decisions.
It is strikingly similar to Muslims who want to have all legal proceedings decided by Sharia Law. That is the only legal defense that they deem appropriate and just. According to them Sharia Law overrides any laws on the book in the United States and especially Christian laws.
So the question to ask is, can the Bible and its record of rape, slavery, justified killings, confiscating property, etc. be used as a defense for crimes that citizens commit, especially when they are "Christians?"
The man and his son have ties to Messianic beliefs, refer to their god as Yeshua. Reporters have not been able to find out exactly what church they attended.
A father and son accused of raping a teenage girl over a three-year period and keeping her shackled in a basement have made it clear that they don't have faith in the law or in the people who practice it.
When they face an Ohio jury as they defend themselves against criminal charges that carry long prison sentences, they will rely on one book: The Bible.
Timothy Ciboro and his son, Esten Ciboro, both of Toledo, are each charged with multiple counts of rape. The trial is scheduled to start this week, months after the girl, who is Timothy Ciboro's stepdaughter, managed to unshackle herself and escape while her alleged abusers were gone, authorities said.
Is the Bible the only law book that Christians should be accountable to? Various COG cult leaders think so. James Malm and Bob Thiel both thing this is approach as does Meredith. They feel they are higher than the civil law and are accountable to Biblical law first. just like the Ciboro's. This is the same thing I head many ministers in the COG claim over the decades.
During a hearing Friday, the Ciboros made the unusual request of having access to the Bible, which they plan to cite as they defend themselves in front of a jury. The Bible, Esten Ciboro told a judge, is “the only law book that truly matters,” the Toledo Blade reported.
“Recognize that the very molecules that make up your body, the atoms that construct the molecules, are traceable to the crucibles that were once the centers of high mass stars that exploded their chemically rich guts into the galaxy, enriching pristine gas clouds with the chemistry of life. So that we are all connected to each other biologically, to the earth chemically and to the rest of the universe atomically. That’s kinda cool! That makes me smile and I actually feel quite large at the end of that. It’s not that we are better than the universe, we are part of the universe. We are in the universe and the universe is in us.” ― Neil deGrasse Tyson
"As far as Dr. Neil DeGrasse Tyson goes, are you serious? In all due respect, he comes across as a zealot to push an anti-God agenda and certainly not as a scientist interested in the truth. I watched several of his television programs years ago and my recollection is that I found his 'proofs' sorely lacking"
Dr. Robert Thiel
“... there is no shame in not knowing. The problem arises when irrational thought and attendant behavior "fill the vacuum left by ignorance....."
The Universe is under no obligation to make sense to you.”
"As far as Dr. Robert Thiel goes, are you serious? In all due respect, he comes across as a zealot to push a Only I Understand God agenda and certainly not as a theologian interested in the truth. I watched several of his youtube videos years ago and my recollection is that I found his 'proofs' sorely lacking"
The sickness that is the Philadelphia Church of God continues its downward spiral into spiritual depravity. Ever since Gerald Flurry had his dream that PCG members would cut off all ties with family members who are no longer part of the cult, the horror stories have been prolific in how family ties have been destroyed.
Mark Saranga took over as head of the PCG Mail Processing Dept. when Mark Nash was unceremoniously fired from that position. His daughter Alicia was seeing a "worldly" boy at the public school she attended, so Mark Saranga kicked her out of the house never to return (which is in keeping with Gerald Flurry's disfellowshipping policy). Alicia was a minor and around 16 years old at the time. She had no place to go as the other PCG members were too afraid of Gerald Flurry putting them out, too, for sheltering someone thrown out of the PCG. People are in fear of the ministry.
Alicia had to go to the local office of Health and Human Services and tell them she was basically homeless without any means of support. The State put her into foster care and she has been there ever since. Her father Mark Saranga is still an "upstanding minister" in the PCG. He writes for the Philadelphia Trumpet and Royal Vision magazine and his work is predominantly featured on the PCG website. Ironically, one of his current articles on there is about the Sandy Hook tragedy and how to protect your children. This coming from a man who kicked out his minor aged daughter to the curb for seeing a boy in school.
Not only are Gerald Flurry's insane policies destroying the PCG financially, but they are also causing a local strain on the taxpayers as the kicked out minor aged children of the PCG members are relying on the State to survive. --[name withheld]