Articles on this Page
- 01/03/18--22:43: _COG False Prophet C...
- 01/05/18--08:42: _Reasons vs. Excuses
- 01/05/18--23:58: _UCG: Are the fields...
- 01/06/18--00:46: _PCG Wants Members t...
- 01/06/18--13:48: _Church Festivals an...
- 01/06/18--21:57: _Will the COG True T...
- 01/07/18--12:09: _Ron Weinland Forced...
- 01/07/18--18:59: _COG Pharisaical Zea...
- 01/07/18--20:22: _A Little Perspectiv...
- 01/08/18--12:04: _The Church of God S...
- 01/09/18--15:03: _Why Are COG Members...
- 01/10/18--11:49: _Living Church of Go...
- 01/10/18--21:54: _How the Truth About...
- 01/11/18--18:51: _Here is your chance...
- 01/11/18--19:13: _PCG: Wimpy Men Enco...
- 01/12/18--19:26: _PCG: California St...
- 01/13/18--08:02: _The Laryngitis of t...
- 01/14/18--19:48: _The Journal: News o...
- 01/15/18--11:54: _Herbert W. Armstron...
- 01/15/18--13:01: _FaithLeaks - The "W...
- 01/05/18--08:42: Reasons vs. Excuses
- 01/05/18--23:58: UCG: Are the fields no longer white for harvest?
- 01/06/18--00:46: PCG Wants Members to Know They Have "Sick Trusting Minds"
- 01/06/18--13:48: Church Festivals and "God's Calendar": Oy veh!
- Exodus 23:14-17 (from the Elohist source)
- Exodus 34:18-26 (from the Yahwist)
- Deuteronomy 16:1-17 (from the Deuteronomist)
- Leviticus 23 (from the Priestly source, accredited to the Holiness Code)
- Numbers 28-29 (also from the pen of P)
- Festival of Unleavened Bread (7 day festival in the month of Abib; 7th day is the pilgrimage (Ex 13:6)
- Harvest Festival (first fruits/grains harvested)
- Festival of Gathering (end of year harvest)
- Festival of Unleavened Bread (7 days in the month of Abib)
- Festival of Weeks = Harvest (#168)
- Festival of Gathering
- Passover + 6 days of Unleavened Bread (specific day of Abib still not specified; Passover must be celebrated at Jerusalem, which is now a pilgrimage festival (#117); Unleavened Bread no longer a pilgrimage festival; Passover is now absorbed as the 1st day of unleavened bread, reducing the Festival of Unleavened Bread to 6 days)
- Festival of Weeks (now delayed 7 weeks from early E date; now a pilgrimage festival to Jerusalem)
- Festival of Booths (7 days at Jerusalem; transformation of Festival of Gathering)
- Passover & Unleavened Bread (14th & 15th of Abib; 7 days total (=D) or Passover + 7 days (cf. Ex 12:17-20)?; Passover no longer a pilgrimage festival to Jerusalem, but now (again, see E) at home; Unleavened Bread reclaimed a pilgrimage festival; now proclaimed an “eternal law”; burnt-offerings to Yahweh for 7 days, not specified)
- Festival of Weeks (now proclaimed an “eternal law”; grain & burnt offerings to Yahweh at the first reaping of harvest AND 7 sabbatical weeks later (i.e., start counting on the Sabbath), on the 50th day, more grain & burnt offerings to Yahweh, plus sin and peace offerings)
- Horn Blast Holy Day (1st day of 7th month; offerings to Yahweh)
- Day of Purgation (10th day of 7th month; an “eternal law”; offerings to Yahweh, see Lev 16)
- Festival of Booths (15th day of 7th month; an “eternal law”; burnt-offerings for 7 days; 8th day a sacred assembly)
- The tamid (twice daily “continual” burnt-offering of one-year old lambs, in the morning and in the evening)
- Sabbath Day (burnt-offering of 2 lambs w/accompanying grain-offering + the tamid)
- New Moon, 1st of the month (burnt-offering of 2 bulls, 1 ram, 7 lambs w/accompanying grain-offering + sin-offering of 1 goat + the tamid)
- Passover & Unleavened Bread (14th & 15th of Abib; Unleavened Bread a pilgrimage festival for 7 days, each day a burnt-offering of 2 bulls, 1 ram, 7 lambs w/accompanying grain-offering + sin-offering of 1 goat + the tamid)
- Day of Firstfruits = Festival of Weeks (pilgrimage festival; burnt-offering of 2 bulls, 1 ram, 7 lambs w/accompanying grain-offering + sin-offering of 1 goat + the tamid)
- Horn Blast Holy Day (1st day of 7th month; burnt-offering of 1 bull, 1 ram, 7 lambs w/accompanying grain-offering + burnt-offering for New Moon + sin-offering of 1 goat + thetamid)
- Day of Purgation (10th day of 7th month; burnt-offering of 1 bull, 1 ram, 7 lambs w/accompanying grain-offering + burnt-offering for Atonement (= Lev 16) + sin-offering of 1 goat + the tamid)
- Festival of Booths (15th day of 7th month; pilgrimage festival; 7 days of burnt-offerings: day 1: 13 bulls, 2 rams, 14 lambs w/accompanying grain-offering + a sin-offering of 1 goat + the tamid; day 2: 12 bulls, 2 rams, 14 lambs; day 3: 11 bulls, 2 rams, 14 lambs, etc.; day 8 declared a sacred assembly: burnt-offering of 1 bull, 1 ram, 7 lambs w/accompanying grain-offering + sin-offering of 1 goat + the tamid)
- 01/06/18--21:57: Will the COG True Two Witnesses Be Able To Do this?
- 01/07/18--20:22: A Little Perspective Is In Order Here...
- 01/08/18--12:04: The Church of God Spanking Tents
- 01/09/18--15:03: Why Are COG Members Not Allowed To Wrestle With Scriptures?
- 01/10/18--11:49: Living Church of God: Training Women Christian Soldiers
- 01/11/18--18:51: Here is your chance to buy Rod Meredith's home!
- 01/13/18--08:02: The Laryngitis of the Gods
- 01/14/18--19:48: The Journal: News of the Churches of God Issue 201
- 01/15/18--11:54: Herbert W. Armstrong: Racist?
Out favorite self-appointed false prophet is having another hissy-fit over the Painful Truth website calling him out for his lies and sophistry.
Of course, this is just a sure sign that Satan is on the march and is using all of us to persecuted God's one and only end time man. No other COG minister is doing a bigger work that this guy. No other man has held onto proper church governance and doctrines than this guy. No other COG is being persecuted like Not-arrested, but almost arrested, Elisha, Elijah, Amos, Joshua, Habbakuk, Mayan guru, and closet-Catholic Bob Thiel.
The persecution of Not-arrested, but almost-arrest Thiel is so intense that it was foretold in Scriptures:
But those who hate what we stand for do not care.
Jesus said:10 Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11 Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. 12 Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you (Matthew 5:10-12)
12 Now brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child; and children will rise up against parents and cause them to be put to death. 13 And you will be hated by all men for My name’s sake. But he who endures to the end shall be saved…” (Mark 13:12-13).
3 And these things they will do to you because they have not known the Father nor Me. 4 But these things I have told you, that when the time comes, you may remember that I told you of them. And these things I did not say to you at the beginning, because I was with you (John 16:3-4).
Notice also the following prophecy:
Bob Thiel is a liar. He is not being persecuted for righteousness sake, he is being mocked because he is a self-appointed liar. That is a fact that everyone knows, from Rod Meredith to Gaylon Bonjour, to the rest of the Churches of God. The man is a fool.1 But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: 2 For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, 3 unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, 4 traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, 5 having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away! (2 Timothy 3:1-5)
Butt-hurt Bob continues with this:
Butt-hurt Bob was incensed over this posting:The Painful Truth site is falsely convicting me of sin that I am not guilty of. They will not accept the truth, but instead spew out lies.Do not believe them or others who put forth hate and falsehoods.
One of the PT editors recently made this statement to me: “Bob Thiel is guilty of a shocking display of dishonesty and sophistry.” I confess to a similar sentiment, but as it is, Thiel, who is a peddler of Herbert Armstrong’s fictional and failed prophecies, is generally considered by the ACOG community as a huckster and poses little threat if he is constantly challenged and kept in check. He certainly does not display the honesty or character of Ian Boyne, who allowed people to challenge his thoughts and his writings.
Just for the record, the Painful Truth does not attack those who hold a religious belief. Rather, we wish to expose those who we consider to be false teachers who live at the expense of others. Keep in mind always, that evil prevails when good people do nothing.
With this short article, we want to share with you our view about Bob Thiel’s malignant beliefs and what damage we can expect in the coming year. We would not have to do so if Thiel allowed comments at his website where we could challenge him and refute his writings.I am quite sure Butt-hurt's Bob's followers in Africa are very sincere people who want to do what is right, at least most of them probably do. The problem lies in the FACT that Bob Thiel is a liar. God no more doubly blessed him through the hands of Galyon Bonjour than the nightmares of two different people in different parts of the world legitimized his self-appointed "ministry." Thiel is no more preaching "first century Christianity" than Dave Pack or Gerald Flurry are. They are all liars that are deceiving the brethren.
The question that the Painful Truth posed for Bob still remains:
Can he, will he acknowledge his own insularity and excesses, or will he continue down the path of smug self-congratulation and vanity, never passing up an opportunity to destroy, debauch, devalue, and dehumanize a wide assortment of innocent people?
I am a great believer in the astro theological nature of many bible tales. I just don't believe the origin is God putting his plan in the constellations.
"If that is your belief, then please tell me what was God's intention for creating the heavens and universe? There MUST be a reason, for God does nothing without a purpose in mind."
"Actually we humans come up with the concept of "there must be a reason" etc. The fact is the universe and our evolution from ape ancestors to conscious of our mortality does not care and we are not special in it any more than earth is special will billions of them out there just being discovered.
I don't believe in the existence of the bible God. That is a literary and human construct to help us cope . I don't believe it took a god to bring the universe, which may also be just one of billions to pass. It's a huge topic but I go with science on this stuff"
"I'm sorry, but I didn't realize you were an atheist. Based on your website, I always thought you were part of the COG. With that in mind, I won't bother you any more. I have no desire or time to converse with anyone who doesn't believe in a Creator God.
Romans 1:19-2019 What can be known about God is clear to them because he has made it clear to them.
20 From the creation of the world, God's invisible qualities, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly observed in what he made. As a result, people have no excuse. (GWN)
Dennis, you have NO excuse."
Several United Church of God members sent me links to the sermon preached at their
UCG imagines itself as that purveyor of truth to a lost and desperately searching world. One of the reasons for the yearly Christmas Family Weekend is that it is a witness to the heathen Christmas observing pagans who worship Nimrod in the highly decorated hotel that holds their party weekend in.
When the various UCG members sent the link, it was available to the world to see as a witness to the "truth." One would think that the sermons of God's true ministers would be worthy for the world to hear, but no. UCG has restricted the access to the sermon.
Apparently, the fields are no longer ripe, or they just don't care. Or, the cat got let out of the bag and they are struggling to get it back in. Time will tell what actually UCG is up to. Just as many of them lied when they worked for WCG while denying that changes were coming, they are doing the same thing now. Can they really be trusted to tell the truth any more?
Contrast that to what those who follow Jesus are referred to:
12 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. 13 Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. 14 And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. 15 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. 16 Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. 17 And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.Since the Philadelphia Church of God follows Moses, Habakkuk, Jeremiah, David, and all the other "heroes' of the Old Testament, they are at a total loss when it comes to Jesus. Here are some other qualities that believers have that PCG members do not have:
You love your enemies, your neighbors, your family, and your friends. You aren’t afraid to love when others are withholding it. ()
Grace is an inevitable quality of any Christ follower. While the rest of the world may show resentment and hold grudges, a legit Christian will always show grace and forgiveness. ()
You don’t think of yourself before others. In fact, you do the complete opposite. Your spirit is wired to put others before your own needs, wants and desires. Why? Because Jesus himself did the same thing. ()
You give and serve out of the abundance of your heart. Not only is your heart passionate about serving others, but its sole purpose is to serve others as Christ came to serve us. ()
Pride comes before the fall. If you don’t remember, pride itself is what sent satan to his lonely exile. Humility showcases a posture that is open to being molded, directed, and empowered by the Spirit of God. There is no such thing as a prideful example of Jesus. Why? Because pride isn’t an attribute that Jesus practices. ()
You don’t sit at home and bask in your own mess. Instead, your are a driven and goal-minded individual who seeks after the will of God. Your driven heart keeps you focused on God’s promises, his will, and his grace. ()
You are passionate about Jesus, sharing the promises of God, and showcasing the living and breathing image of love. Settling for mediocrity is not something you’re willing to do. Your passion and zeal for the Lord takes you deeper into the character of God himself. ()
Compassion is like a second language to any legit Christian. You bear the burdens of others, feel their pain, and do whatever you can to comfort those going through a tough time. ()
Patience is a true virtue of any true Christ follower. It’s easy to make quick decisions, but those who are truly grounded in the Word of God are prone to slowing down, seeking Godly wisdom, and pursuing the guidance of Christ. ()
Self-control brings security and maturity to anyone’s life. And while some may see control as a flaw, Jesus views control and organization as a beautiful thing to practice when in a relationship with him. ()
If you don’t have anything nice to say, then don’t say anything at all. Kindness is a beautiful attribute of any legit Christian. Not only does kindness showcase a vibrant reflection of Christ, but it also allows you to personally reflect an image of his being. ()
Life is too short to be spent in sorrow. As Christians, we are called to rejoice in all things. No matter what you are going through in life, choosing joy will always be the way of a legit Christian. ()
Don’t look to stir up controversy, dissension, or even strife. Seek to be a peacemaker in all things. While the rest of the world looks to make their point, seek to bring peace through the love and grace of Christ. ()
-Jarrid Wilson 13 Qualities of a Legit ChristianThe church has always held members to the standard of being worthless worms, devoid of any redeeming qualities whatsoever. Church members have never been considered good enough for a loving God to love unconditionally. The more members are beat down, the more submissive they will be. Just take a look at almost every single letter HWA wrote to the membership. Church members were constantly at fault for something. Don't ever dare use your mind to actually think, to do so lets Satan gain control.
Because PCG chooses not to follow Jesus and instead places their allegiance upon OT hero's, it stands to reason that they need to tell their members that they have incurably sick human minds. Just look at their leaders!
Ron Weinland believes and teaches that he and his dingy wife Laura are and will be the two witnesses of Revelation.
Can you imagine these two morons doing this:
Ron claims he and his wife are the TWs (Two Witnesses) of Rev 11.Not only do they believe this, but Weinland is now starting to teach that there will be a second set of two witless witnesses.
1) They breath fire
2) They kill their enemies
3) They turn rivers to blood
4) They shut the heavens
5) They can cast plagues at their discretion, as often as they want.
Let me guess, Jeremy and Audra. Oh wait, Bob Theil and James Malm! Now there's a pair...
From: False Prophet Ron Weinland
Can Armstrongism get any crazier?
In 2008 Weinland gave a sermon on the 1260 days...
What woman in her right mind would lay in a hotel bathtub, covered with a blanket, while her idiot husband was preaching a sermon in the other room. What kind of a man would ever make that request? How sick can Armstrongism get?In this past week’s sermon Ron delivered an interesting message that indicated that his wife Laura (the silent witness), on more than one occasion, had to place a blanket in their hotel room bathtub, and remain there in the bathtub covered in a blanket, while Ronnie gave his sermon in the comfort of their spacious hotel room. This of course was to elevate distractions, while Ron could concentrate and deliver his sermon. Could you imagine spending approximately 2 hours sitting or laying in a bathtub covered in a blanket? I can’t. This is pathetic.42:23-42:42 …I was going to mention here that she [Laura] is actually in the room this time. It shows growth on my part in being able to speak. I guess she doesn’t have to go into the bathroom this time and put the big blanket to cover her in the tub like she did during Passover last year. Sometimes it has been difficult for me to speak when there is one or a few in the room compared to an audience…Earlier in the sermon, Ron declared that prior to the delivery of this sermon; he approached his wife and caught her off guard by proclaiming that God wanted her ordained as a Prophet. According to Ron, there wasn’t any discussion with Laura before this decision to ordain her was performed. It occurred at that very moment. Later he made reference that he had grown enough to allow Laura to remain in the same room while he delivered the sermon. That is why she is in attendance at today’s sermon, in their hotel room, with Ron the “Prophet” and not in the “tub” with the blanket.Finally, Ron did proclaim that he is still the “Prophet” and will only answer to God and Christ. Laura is a “prophet” that is subordinate to Ron, but has been given authority over all evangelist and elders of the church.
Where would the Church of God be today without all of its prophets, apostles and god haunted leaders? Every day one of these guru's blasts out a warning that COG members, for some insane reason, refuse to follow. COG members then get slathered with all kinds of labels declaring them Laodiceans, backsliding, lukewarm, or lacking in zeal.
Various COG leaders believe their message is the one and only true message and that everyone needs to heed their admonitions without question. James Malm, the resident Pharisaical Zealot of the Church of God is perturbed that after 10 years of graceless ranting, no one in the Big Three COG's will listen to him.
The warnings have been going out for nearly ten years now, yet the leadership of the big three and most other organizations will not turn to a zeal to live by every Word of God.
They are convinced that they are right and reject anything which does not come from them as being unimportant or wrong (Hos 4:6, 6:5-6), not realizing how wrong they are (Rev 3:15-22).The one true Pharisee and prophet has envisioned an entire scenario that will happen in the next few months as sure proof he is correct.
In the coming months a great victory will be achieved over organized Islamic Extremists while a Grand Bargain for peace in the Middle East which is heavily in Israel’s favor is concluded.
This in turn is planned to bring great prosperity to America through massive rebuilding conducted by major American Establishment companies throughout the Middle East. The reconstruction is to be financed using donor money, most of it from international donors particularly the oil rich Arab Nations.
The plan from the beginning of the Syrian conflict has been to inflict as much damage as possible to enable major American companies to engage in massive rebuilding financed by international donors, which would then, along with the regular economic activities; drive the American economy to great heights of prosperity.The prophet is so sure about his prediction that he knows it to be "the truth" that all COG leaders and members should immediately be heeding. But no, they refuse!
I tell you the truth, although I wish it were not so; the big three groups of today’s spiritual Ekklesia as well as the vast majority of other groups in the COG constellation and most of the brethren, will look with their eyes at the apparent great prosperity and will be deceived into thinking that the coming of the LORD will take much longer and that they will have a period of prosperity to do a great Elijah work.Malm imagines himself as the guardian of the two witless COG witnesses. His men/women will be rejected by all of the other COG false prophets. So far, like Bob Thiel's warnings, all of the COG's have overwhelmingly rejected the rants of these exclusive prophets, including Malm.
When God’s two prophets come in God’s power, they will be rejected by most of the brotherhood as false prophets trying to prevent their self imagined great Elijah work!
Only a very few, perhaps a few hundred, will respond by turning to live by every Word of God and to follow the directions of God’s two servants. Then great tribulation will burst upon those who have rejected the warnings and chosen their own imaginations.Prophet Malm does NOT lie! It is all a test! A test by God to see which 100 or so COG members will heed his call.
I lie not, a great test is upon us! Almighty God wants to know who will be zealously faithful to HIM and who will follow idols of men contrary to the Word of God.Why is it that everything in Armstrongite theology has to be one continuous "test" after another? No COG member has ever passed any of the tests and qualified for anything. If they did, we would not have the endless stream of self-appointed upstarts we have today in the church.
I bare witness that most of the organizations and brethren are, in their own way, zealous for God, its just that most have been deceived into thinking that organizational loyalty is the same as loyalty to God. Therefore they follow idols of men into sins like the modern Rabbinic Calendar and Sabbath pollution, and rejecting the increase of understanding that God has promised for our day (Dan 12).
Relying on their false traditions instead of relying on the Word of God, they reject spiritual growth and growth in godly knowledge. Therefore God is testing us and God will divide his faithful from the followers of men and false traditions.Those that heed Zealot Malm's clarion call will be allowed to enter Petra where they will be subjected to 3 1/2 half years of ENDLESS sermonizing on zeal and the law. Jesus will be kept outside the gates of Petra in order to allow the law to reign supreme. While Jesus is outside the gates he will be preparing a huge army of angels to prepare for war on the United States, Canada, England and Australia. Then, James Malm and his Wiccan sidekick Constance will present the 100 or so true believers to his Jesus and will mount up on steads of white to join in that mighty army of righteous vengeance. When they ride into the United States with that great army they will catch the folks in UCG, RCG, PCG, COGWA, cCOG, and LCG by surprise.
The small number who pass the test will be spared God’s correction yet, they will continue to learn in a new environment.
The vast majority of today’s organizations and brethren will fail the test and will be caught by surprise, not because they have not been warned, but because they have rejected the warnings.
Those who do not respond to the warnings to turn to and to live by every Word of God, will be taken by surprise (1Thess 5:3). Then they will fall into the furnace of affliction in the hope that they can still be turned to godliness.All COG's have failed the test! Yeah, right...
The Spank Tent
March 12, 2002
On the False Prophet Ron Weinland site, the following comment was made on how COG members were never taught to study scriptures in the manner that the Bereans did or as the Jews did and still do. Jewish history and scripture have been filled with stories with the Jewish people examining scriptures, wrestling with it, arguing over it, questioning God over it, and then drawing well thought out conclusions, which could change as more people wrestled with it or new knowledge was gained.
In the COG this has never been the case. Church members never were able to question things, debate, argue or wrestle with interpretations. Church leaders and ministers claimed that exclusive right and members could not ever interpret scripture on their own. God forbid if a group of church members ever wanted to gather together with friends and discuss scriptures! We have all seen over the last several years what happens to people when they do!
In the Church of God, "knowledge" could only flow from Herbert Armstrong down through the evangelists, then to the ministers, and then to the unwashed masses who were required to believe the ministry knew what they were talking about.
Today we see that still enforce in every single COG group. Only Church of God International seems to allow room for people to wrestle with scripture.
The Bible is filled with stories of people questioning, arguing or wrestling with God, yet no COG member is allowed to do so today. If they were allowed to do so, there would be no need for the outlandish characters like Malm, Thiel, Pack, Flurry, Weston, Kubik and all the rest of the so-called enlightened leadership.
One of the problems is that Bible Study in Armstrongism meant that you had to come to the guided, spoon-fed conclusions that the organization led you to. They really didn’t teach members to study scriptures like Bereans, wrestle with them, and draw your own conclusions. And, that is the difference between knowledge and wisdom and programming. Look at all of these ACOG leaders! Each one has programmed his group to believe that he is the one and only! I’ve been saying for years that if Jesus returns, and begins to correct peoples’ Armstrongism, then the splinter leaders and ACOG members will treat Jesus just as the Pharisees did the first time around! Any religious leader could fail to back down and take direction from Jesus, fight Jesus for the power, and in so doing become anti-Christ. This is something that Ron’s followers probably would never even consider in their wildest dreams, in spite of all the red flags here and now in real time.
An LCG member sent me the link to an article posted on the Living Church of God site, Woman to Woman - Women as Christian Soldiers. In the article, Faye League compares women in the military today with women in the LCG.
She starts off with this:
The LCG member commented that with so few men in the LCG who are masculine enough to actually fight a battle, women will most certainly have to step up to the plate. They have survived years of abuse by ministers like McNair, Meredith, and Weston who have browbeat them down to keep them in their place, where they have learned survival skills.In the physical military (armed forces) in times past, it was usually the males who were drafted, recruited, or who volunteered to fight in wars. The women were to stay home and “keep the home fires burning,” so to speak. However, while most of us ladies (being the gentle souls that we are) cannot even imagine ourselves in full battle gear on the front lines fighting in wars in mortal combat, it has become more popular and appealing to some women outside of the Church to be in full service in the military. Some are even deployed to dangerous war zones such as Iraq and Afghanistan.So, with that introduction in mind, let us compare two types of soldiers—the military soldier and the Christian soldier—and learn what we can as women. We’ll find that the spiritual role that the Christian soldier represents involves much more ongoing responsibility and is far more future-oriented.
Then the fun begins (have a barf bag ready):
This is where you will actually need military boots on to wade through the crap...Both types of soldiers have two main areas of common ground, but with crucial differences in purpose.1) They both must go through a certain period of basic training.Both soldiers are taught by seasoned officers, who have been through this training themselves and are very capable of teaching them to be fit soldiers, ready for service.As we know, the basic training of a military soldier (male or female) consists of marching drills, long hikes in full military gear, fording streams and rivers with weapons held high, trench-digging, military maneuvers, vigorous exercise, mental conditioning and much, much more. At the completion of this training, it is evident to all that a definite change has taken place and that the soldier is qualified for the tasks ahead.
Yes women of the LCG, please follow your "god" inspired leader like Rod McNair who says elderly people are demon possessed and who kicked out an LCG member for caring for an elderly person in his home. A man who corners women in order to get them to turn their husbands in for some infraction. A man born into the COG elite and who has never worked an honest day in his life. Or what about Gerald Weston who has treated the youth in the church like dirt over the decades so much so that many were scared to be in his presence? Or Rod Meredith who admitted he liked to spank his wife for disobeying him? Is this the kind of men you want to follow as you allow them to "teach and train" you?The Christian soldiers’ basic training is taught by God’s true ministers.They teach us how to live by God’s word—His law, with all of its precepts, concepts, and principles—as well as how to overcome our enemies—the Satanic evil forces of this world and our own human natures. They begin with the milk of the word. “For everyone who partakes only of milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, for he is a babe. But solid food belongs to those who are of full age, that is, those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil” (Hebrews 5:13–14). And as we grow toward maturity, we are taking on the mind of Christ. “Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 2:5). By taking on the mind of Christ, we learn to do the Father’s will. “‘For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,’ says the Lord” (Isaiah 55:8). As women who are Christian soldiers, we are learning a new way of life—thus becoming a new creation, a different individual being trained to be fit for service in God’s elite army of firstfruits. It should be evident to all that a definite change is taking place, as we who have God’s Spirit increasingly bear its fruit.It is incumbent upon us as women Christian soldiers to always follow the example of those who teach and train us.“Remember those who rule over you, who have spoken the word of God to you, whose faith follow, considering the outcome of their conduct” (Hebrews 13:7).
She continues with a story of Deborah, a prophetess that men came to for wisdom (can you imagine Weston or McNair coming to a woman in LCG and asking them for guidance? Seriously?)2) Both types of soldiers must stay the course.There are certain term limits that a military soldier may choose, but to be a Christian soldier is a lifetime commitment. During the terms of service, etc., military and Christian soldiers will find it necessary to make difficult decisions for purposes of bringing about the right results. These may include standing fast, moving forward in the right direction, overcoming doubts and fears, or enduring hardship in order to stay the course. Making the right decisions leads to success—which, of course, we all desire.
League finished this point with this, using one of the most worn-out words ever uttered in Armstrongism: "inculcate."The account continues: “Now Deborah, a prophetess, the wife of Lapidoth, was judging Israel at that time. And she would sit under the palm tree of Deborah between Ramah and Bethel in the mountains of Ephraim. And the children of Israel came up to her for judgment. Then she sent and called for Barak the son of Abinoam from Kedesh in Naphtali, and said to him, ‘Has not the Lord God of Israel commanded, “Go and deploy troops at Mount Tabor; take with you ten thousand men of the sons of Naphtali and of the sons of Zebulun; and against you I will deploy Sisera, the commander of Jabin’s army, with his chariots and his multitude at the River Kishon; and I will deliver him into your hand”?’ And Barak said to her, ‘If you will go with me, then I will go; but if you will not go with me, I will not go!’” (vv. 4–8).Then Deborah stood fast and spoke firmly, yet in a chiding manner to Barak, as any loving mother would to her own son whom she wants to see succeed in God’s will and way of life. “So she said, ‘I will surely go with you; nevertheless there will be no glory for you in the journey you are taking, for the Lord will sell Sisera into the hand of a woman.’ Then Deborah arose and went with Barak to Kedesh” (Judges 4:9).After both armies had gathered together for battle—Sisera and his troops at the River Kishon, and Barak and his troops at Mount Tabor—Deborah again stood fast and urged and encouraged Barak to do God’s will, for the battle was his to win. “Then Deborah said to Barak, ‘Up! For this is the day in which the Lord has delivered Sisera into your hand. Has not the Lord gone out before you?’ So Barak went down from Mount Tabor with ten thousand men following him” (Judges 4:14).Then, with God’s power, guidance and direction, they were victorious in their pursuits, and eventually, with Israel growing stronger and stronger, they completely destroyed Jabin, king of Canaan, and the land had peace. Both Deborah and Barak received honor and gave God the credit for the victory in the “Song of Deborah,” singing joyously of their exploits. Barak is also honored by being mentioned in Hebrews 11:32, along with the other renowned men and women of faith.Deborah the prophetess was not only used by God as a wise and kind judge but as a helper of Barak’s faith, and she was instrumental in the deliverance of Israel from the oppression of King Jabin of Canaan. “Village life ceased, it ceased in Israel, until I, Deborah, arose, arose a mother in Israel” (Judges 5:7). Apparently, Deborah was a very strong mother figure to Israel as well.
Basic training in the military is a time that is used to strip away individual thought and actions in order to make the unit cohesive and as one. The Church of God, and particularly the Living Church of God is NOT a unified or cohesive unit marching forth into battle. Abusive leaders cannot inspire members to fight for the cause when the leaders have never fought a real battle or earned callouses on their delicate hands.So by inculcating these two ideas in our endeavors as Christian soldiers—going through basic training and staying the course—we will move forward, ever closer to our goal of God’s Kingdom and His righteousness.
After a story of an LCG wife who put family first over a job and was blessed for it, she ends with this:
As we continue in our journey as Christian soldiers, let us seek God’s will every day by putting our basic training into action and by continuing to stay the course on into God’s Kingdom, while growing in the righteous character of God.Real basic training is profitable and has lifelong effects on a person's character, attitudes and actions. Church of God "training" has decades of horrendous impacts upon members lives, particularly those trained at the feet of Rod Meredith and crew.
LCG members always are struggling to stay on course, but if they actually followed the one they claim they do, then they would know their battle has already been fought for them and won.
There has been a great discussion on the Ambassador College Alumni site about tithing and how one many, through much research, proved that tithing was not an Old Covenant or New Covenant command for church members. Of course, this did not sit well with an administration who survived on tithing.
The man who did this research was Harry Eisenberg.
From Ambassador Report 1
By the time this happened, Garner Ted Armstrong had become a major industry. The Worldwide Church of God had become Ted's religious arm of global influence and the church's Doctrinal Committee had become an efficient oppressor of truth.
The following account, written by Harry Eisenberg, is an account of character assassination. It clearly explains how truth is suppressed inside the Ambassador entity and how the one who discovers it must become silent, giving way to the personal doctrines of those in power, or be removed.
Before his discovery, Harry Eisenberg was an employee of Ambassador College. He is the author of eight major articles published for Ambassador under his by-line, as well as the author of numerous articles written for others or published under no by-line. Here is his story:
Quite by coincidence I am writing this article on the main campus of the University of Maryland. As is the case with virtually every other institution of higher learning, considerable research into both the sciences and humanities has been undertaken here. The purpose of the university is not only to educate students, but to provide new knowledge and answers to questions affecting our society.
Colleges and universities have in fact been the major vehicle for providing society with new knowledge in just about every field. The student, especially the graduate student, is on campus not only to absorb knowledge, but also to make a contribution to the body of knowledge extant in his particular field. To use a familiar phrase, he is expected to give as well as to get!
One would think this principle should hold true for Ambassador College as well. Unfortunately, this has not been the case. This is due to a basic difference between Ambassador College and other institutions of higher learning.
Whereas most universities exist to promote the advancement of knowledge and to pass it on to their students, Ambassador College exists to promulgate to the public the knowledge and values of its founder, Herbert W. Armstrong. New discoveries and/or contributions to knowledge are often not welcome there. For one thing, such new discoveries are not, generally speaking, in keeping with the primary aim, which is the dissemination of existing knowledge. Furthermore, should any new concept uncovered through the research of a faculty member or student conflict even remotely with the views of the founder, such research is utterly unwelcome, as Herbert Armstrong's views are regarded as sacrosanct and inspired.
For example, one student wrote a research paper for an Ambassador theology class, claiming that the scriptures speak of a spirit in animals as well as a spirit in man. He provided considerable evidence to support his contention. Upon presenting the paper to his instructors, the student was urged to keep his ideas to himself. It seems the spirit in man and the idea that animals differ from man is a pet concept of Mr. Armstrong's, and the theology instructors were afraid to present the Student's findings to him.
The following semester the student was not allowed to register for classes and was expelled from the college. He was charged with the crime of "highbrowing the ministers", whatever that means. The loss was Ambassador's, not the student's.
I was a paid researcher on the staff of Ambassador College for over four years. Generally speaking, my work involved providing "proofs" for the pet concepts and theories held by Mr. Herbert Armstrong and/or his son, Garner Ted. Occasionally, I was successful as in the case of an article entitled "Did Jesus Have Long Hair?" This article attempted to show that there is historical evidence proving that Jesus did not necessarily wear long hair, as he is often pictured today.
My article was widely reprinted and resulted in a personal full-page interview in a major Los Angeles daily. It was one of few articles which have cast Ambassador College in a good light. It was met with complete silence by an administration which feels any publicity should he its own private realm.
In January 1973, I was asked by my supervisor, Brian Knowles, to research the subject of tithing. In particular, Mr. Knowles was interested in learning who paid what to whom and how in ancient Israel.
And so I began a systematic study of the tithing doctrine by listing each Biblical verse which in any way refers to tithing. What followed was a study of commentaries, encyclopedias arid various historical sources. The result was inevitable! I came to see that the tithing concept as promulgated by Ambassador College and the Worldwide Church of God was contrary to both the Old and the New Testaments.
Scripture makes it plain that the right to collect tithes was given to the Levitical priesthood in exchange for their service in the Temple. There is no evidence that this right was ever passed on to the New Testament Church. The Encyclopedias BRITANNICA and AMERICANA both confirm this view when they state the early New Testament Church did not practice tithing, although it was later adopted by the Catholic Church in the Sixth Century A.D.
Upon presenting the research paper to my supervisor, I was treated in a manner reminiscent of Galileo's encounter with the Catholic Church. I was warned that I had better keep my findings and views to myself. Naturally, it was assumed that I had done the paper because I had some kind of ax to grind and was merely out to prove a previously held notion. Research at Ambassador so often has meant nothing more than finding "proofs" for the "inspired" concepts and ideas of the Armstrongs.
When I was asked to squelch my ideas, I pointed out that that might be difficult as four people had already seen the paper. I was told that if I would keep it down, a doctrinal committee (sic) would eventually consider my findings. Six months went by and about all that the so-called doctrinal committee accomplished can be seen by reading a booklet entitled MARRIAGE AND DIVORCE published briefly by Ambassador College in the summer of 1973.
When I concluded there was no reason why I should keep my paper from others, I proceeded to show it to anyone who inquired about it. Not believing I was the ultimate authority on the subject, I collaborated with a team of some six other Ambassador College researchers on a more in-depth paper on tithing which was completed in December 1973.
As a result of these papers and the fact that I no longer felt a religious compulsion to practice tithing, I was dismissed, without warning, from my job on January 7, 1974. This happened despite the fact that my new supervisor, Dr. Robert Kuhn, acknowledged that I had done outstanding work for him. So much for religious freedom at Ambassador College.
The paper in question was ultimately published with minor modifications by both the Foundation for Biblical Research and the Associated Churches of God. Some open-minded researchers for a newly reconstructed doctrinal committee which was investigating tithing confided to me that any thesis or dissertation from reputable theological institutions that they had the opportunity to examine dealing with the subject in question, tended to agree with my findings.
Finally, in a meeting called to investigate the origin of the papers published by the Foundation and Associated Churches, I was publicly slandered by Ambassador President, Garner Ted Armstrong. Armstrong stated, "Now I don't express it as assassination of Harry's character-it is his mind I'm worried about and not his character. I'm not a bit worried about his personal integrity or his personal habits nor his personal sincerity, but I'm not prepared to say he is the most balanced individual mentally, and that I would rely an awful lot on his research."
But he had been relying "an awful lot on his research". Just weeks before, Armstrong had been parroting my findings on his television program seen by millions in the U.S. and Canada. Furthermore, many of these programs were repeated on the air over and over again. On more than one occasion, articles bearing the by-line of Garner Ted Armstrong but researched by me appeared in fire PLAIN TRUTH magazine.
Only when my findings disagreed with Armstrong's private views was my research no longer reliable and the writer fit for ridicule. But such are the risks that anyone takes who might dare disagree with the administration.
-Harry EisenbergEditor: Harry's efforts to obtain the truth about tithing represented a special threat to the Ambassador administration. It is the one threat Ambassador fears the most-the threat of individual integrity asserting itself over Ambassador's aristocratic corporate structure.
Consequently, on January 7, 1974, Harry Eisenberg's hopes of a fair hearing for tithing research died by committee. Harry's voice, as well as his research, had to be removed from among the followers.
The Ambassador College Board of Trustees found nothing sinister about Harry's removal. Ministers and students who had liked him apparently found nothing objectionable in his being disfellowshipped. "He was a youth overly exposed to satanic doctrines, demonic thoughts goaded him into an attitude of rebellion. Nothing unusual in that." It ended, however, in his dismissal from an organization to which he had dedicated his life.
The announcement of Harry's termination took less than a few seconds. There was no risk that the doctrinal committee would expose the true reasons for Harry's dismissal because members of that committee had been a party to it. There was no risk of exposure from members of the Ambassador-controlled media because a few words about the "Ambassador Oasis" from the charismatic Ted Armstrong and the students would inquire no further. They would not try to digest the indigestible, think the unthinkable, or question Pilate about the removal of a Christian.
No, on January 7, 1974, all seemed well. In fact, things seemed better than ever. And, in short time, the people would again be reminded that "God's work is moving ahead stronger than ever."
The Philadelphia Church of God, like the Living Church of God, has to repeatedly tell their men how to be men. Apparently, the church is riddled with men who just do not measure up to the high stand of masculinity like Gerald or Lil'Steveie Flurry.
Joel Hilliker, the epitome of true first century masculinity, has this to say in Men: Report for Duty:
Here is a specific example of masculine leadership that arises multiple times a day in a family: telling your children what to do. An engaged Christian father issues quite a number of instructions—not for his own benefit or vanity, but because he is actively directing his children to do things that will benefit them and others. But it only starts there.
Once you tell your child to do something, you must then pay attention to the child’s attitude toward that instruction, and then to his performance. You cannot simply give an instruction, return to what you were doing and forget what you said. Children, particularly if untrained, will often test the limits of your authority. If you give some direction and then return your full attention to your conversation with your guest, you are training your child not to be too concerned about your commands. The child you just told to stop racing his car on the coffee table will go right back to it.
Once you give a command, remain on duty. Ensure the child follows through. This must be the case at home, at Sabbath services, in public, everywhere.
“In order to teach your child any of these constructive habits, you will need to apply constant diligence and never-failing attention to duty,” The Plain Truth About Child-Rearing says. “You simply cannot expect to have decent results if you just give your child instructions, and then forget all about the lesson—letting the child get down from the chair when he decides, put up his toys when he gets around to it, or begin to talk when you have told him to be quiet.”
Be AwareThe booklet devotes an important section to “Be Aware of What’s Happening”: “Another way parents encourage foolishness in their children is by not knowing what’s going on. In many cases everyone knows but the parents.” The example that follows is of a boy who went so far as to take up smoking cigarettes, and everyone knew it—except his parents!
Do not be afraid to ask your child direct questions. Do not be too timid to intervene. When you never ask your child why she disobeyed, or why he didn’t come directly home, or why her tone seems stressed, your children begin to assume you do not care. Then they begin to think that what they do is none of your business. “Since their parents do not care to know, they feel that the parents have no right to know” (ibid).
In The Missing Dimension in Sex, Herbert W. Armstrong specifically mentions the possibility of young people developing the habit of masturbation. “This would never be if parents realized their responsibility and were vigilant, ever watchful imperceptibly, and took proper means to protect their children from this curse!” he wrote.
Exercising authority in your children’s lives is not easy—it is labor. It is not a power trip. It is a service. It is for their benefit. And it is your duty.We were taught by an evangelist in the Principles of Living class in Pasadena while the college was still "God's College" one afternoon on the topic of masturbation. This well liked evangelist said, "95% of you in this room have masturbated. The other 5% lie about it."
That magical god of Armstrongism is constantly being called forth by the many COG false prophets and getting blamed for any recent natural disaster to hit the world, but particularly if it happens in the United States, and even better if it happens in California.
Brad McDonald, a Philadelphia Church of God minister, let the "god is angry" spittle fly once again when he had to talk about the recent fires and landslides in California.
Perhaps you’ve heard that Southern California this week is experiencing terrible flooding and mudslides. Whenever a catastrophe like this happens, it’s easy to simply note the particulars and move on, not giving much thought to the human suffering. For me, it was when Johnson said, “We don’t know where [the baby] came from.” Imagine a sleeping toddler swept from its crib (and family), carried away violently, and eventually deposited in an unfamiliar place under four feet of cold, wet mud.
This is California. One month it’s drought and massive wildfires; the next it’s torrential rain, flooding and mudslides. Peppered in between are crises like the Oroville Dam crisis, enduring drug and crime problems, and debilitating debt. Meanwhile, the tectonic plates beneath the state continue to creak and groan, hinting disconcertingly that another massive earthquake is imminent.
With each crisis, one question comes further into focus: Is California cursed?
A strong case can be made proving that California’s demise began in the late 1980s. On Oct. 17, 1989, a massive earthquake rattled Northern California. The Loma Prieta quake caused 63 deaths, more than 3,500 injuries, and billions of dollars’ worth of damage. It occurred during Game 3 of a World Series that, interestingly, was between two California teams. The game (and earthquake) broadcasted live to millions of Americans.
In a sense, the “World Series earthquake” was a sign to the nation of the disasters, tumult and suffering that was to become routine in California over the next 30 years. It was a national sign that California was cursed. In May 1992, Los Angeles erupted in the worst riots in United States history. On Jan. 17, 1994, the Northridge earthquake killed 60 people, injured 9,000, and inflicted $20 billion worth of damage on Southern California. Both of these crises were “historic.”
Since the late 1980s, California has experienced one colossal—in many cases, “historic”—crisis after another: floods, drought, wildfires, mudslides, mass shootings, economic crisis, protests and riots. Exactlyone month ago we published an article on California’s historic wildfires, the worst in state history. In 2017, nearly 9,000 fires burned 1.2 million acres of California, destroying more than 10,000 structures and impacting tens of thousands of people.
As the wildfires raged, it was common to hear people—average, nonreligious people—discussing the fires in apocalyptic terms. Many seriously wondered if the fires were a sign from God, or a sign that the world was about to end. But now that the fires have died down, most people have moved on. California’s apocalypse, many believe, is over (unless you live in Southern California).
But is it? from You Need to Know: Is California Cursed? January 10, 2018There is a method to his madness as to where he is going with this. California has always been the COG's favourite whipping post. From liberals to gays to everything in between, the church found fault with everything. All of that pales in comparison as to the real reason California has had several crises over the years. The reason CA is in such a mess is because it attacked the Living God when it launched its lawsuit against the corrupt administration of the Worldwide Church of God when it tried to seek accountability to the millions and millions of dollars flowing through the church coffers that was being squandered on all kinds of things.
According to Gerald Flurry, when the State attacked the church, they attacked the Living God himself! When that happened, Flurry's god got really really angry and started punishing the citizens of the state in revenge.
Gerald Flurry writes:
In an overt attack against Mr. Armstrong, the state of California, through the attorney general’s office, launched a massive lawsuit against the WCG in 1979. On January 3, that office initiated a sudden, armed assault on the Pasadena headquarters, in an attempt to claim ownership of the Church’s property and assets as well as its continuing income—in violation of the U.S. Constitution. A receiver, secretly appointed by the court, tried to take over and operate God’s Church. Completely false, outrageous and baseless allegations of financial mismanagement were made—despite financial and all other required records having been regularly and voluntarily filed. No evidence of wrongdoing was ever found, and on October 14, 1980, the attorney general dropped all charges and dismissed the case. Later, the higher appellate court ruled that the lawsuit was without foundation.
California is the only state that ever attacked Mr. Armstrong and his work. Actually, it attacked a lot more than that. California really ATTACKED THE LIVING GOD!
Is God now intensely cursing California for its attack against the living God’s work under Herbert W. Armstrong?
“Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord” (Rom. 12:19). Is God now taking vengeance against that state for what it did to His work? Yes, He is! And California is only the beginning.
The sooner we repent, the sooner the curses will end. From Is California Under a Curse? December 2003 TrumpetMcDonald also includes this absurd comment about how his god may get really pissed on January 16th, the date of Herbert Armstrong's death.
It wouldn’t be a surprise if California was pummeled again really soon; maybe even around January 16 or 17? (the anniversary of the death of Herbert W. Armstrong).
My "that's pathetically ignorant" button always gets pushed when Bob Thiel searches the globe for the nasty effects of weather, mostly in due season, inflicted upon the dregs of humanity and attributes this to "God trying to get our attention." The concept that a god has to try has always escaped me.
Now we see that, in keeping with COG Apostle think, PCG also finds their weak god , unable to speak up evidently, punishing California since the70's because they persecuted God's Apostle so called. It's a ridiculous concept and someone said it well when they noted that the Churches of God see themselves as the center and reasons EVERYTHING happens in this world. That's Theological Narcissism to me.
God does nothing directly himself anymore. That trait died out rather soon in scriptures as well as middlemen, weather and natural geological phenomenon took over for the direct voice of God. When we read "thus saith the Lord" or "and God said", if it's in the Bible we just think, "well ok..if you say so. " Today we'd not be so trusting with good reason. It never seems to cross the minds of we sincere folk to ask just what do you mean "God told me" or the mechanism by which the "thus saith" actually comes from. I got "called" into the church. I got "called" into the ministry. But only because I chose to do those things of my own free will. I never actually got a call from any god nor did I hear his/her/its voice literally. Everyone I know today who hears the voices of the gods in their heads today is on medication to curb it and try to control the behaviors that don't lead to a quality life.
Dave Pack heard his own voice in his head and started his true church. Gerald Flurry did the same but filtered his hallucinations through a prayer rock. Every Christian Church on the planet traces their origins to the Apostles. Bob Thiel does but he divines the gods through dreams and words spoken with meanings other than what he came away with. Ron Weinland divines his calling through who the hell knows what. Herbert Armstrong wove the tale of the steering wheel being practically ripped from his hands taking him where he had no intention of going. Others divine the favor of the gods or God because "prayer proves it." I prayed a lot in 30 years, for lots of right things and not "amiss." I prayed over a gazillion sick and never saw a healing. People got better or died but that's about it. Prayer proved nothing to me and don't shit me about having no faith or being insincere and asking amiss. Dave's, Gerald's, Bob's and back when, HWA's calling were all self inflicted and they do not and did not hear any voice of a God.
There are some indications that Bible God can speak up, for himself and "with a mighty voice" at times, but over time even a cursory read of the scriptures will reveal that this boldness disappears leaving the Psalms to plea with a God who seems so far off and of asks "where did you go?" I think those who said God has a mighty voice never heard it personally but imagined it so to be.
"Jeremiah's" Lamentations reflect this loss of God's voice and intervention probably now having simply left Israel to her desolation and destruction and it's the fault of the people...nice going.
The evidence of Bible God's dwindling loud voice and personal relationship with individuals is evident in scripture. In Genesis we have a God who walks and talks in the garden with humans. He is seen face to face and humans are his friends. But it isn't long before God only speaks through pillars of cloud and fire and speaks from mountains with rumblings (earthquakes and volcanos) . Soon enough, he disappears normal communication and has to resort to intermediaries in the form of prophets and priests who hear the voices and pass it on. Today God speaks only through Dave Pack, Gerald Flurry, Robert Thiel and/or James Malm ...whatever. When they aren't available, he tries to get our attention with weather.
Eventually in the New Testament we have God speaking through his son Jesus and that all becomes a matter of faith just as believing the voices in the heads of the prophets were actually that of God. An argument could be made for Ezekiel showing all the signs of schizophrenia, which would not have been understood in the day, as well as the young Samuel who was told by Eli the next time they spoke to him to do what they said. Classic schizophrenia which tends to show up in the teens into the 20's. We'd scoff if Dave Pack said the voice of God in his head told him to "send it in." Most scoffed back then too and were right to be cautious of "God told me."
The Apostle Paul was called, so says Luke though Paul says he was called from the womb, on the road to Damascus seeing a light brighter than the sun and the voice of Jesus....in his head. The accounts are muddled nicely. They can't all be true. This description also fits the classic symptoms of temporal lobe epilepsy with religious content, but I'll spare you that concept for God's voice for now.
IT WAS THE WIND
IT WAS THE WATER. IT WAS THE THUNDER.
He makes Lebanon skip like a calf, And Sirion like a young wild ox. The voice of the LORD hews out flames of fire. The voice of the LORD shakes the wilderness; The LORD shakes the wilderness of Kadesh. The voice of the LORD makes the deer to calve And strips the forests bare; And in His temple everything says, "Glory!"
AS IN MAGMA
IT WAS A THUNDERSTORM. IT MAY HAVE BEEN A VOLANIC EVENT
RUSHING WATER DIVINED AS A VOICE ALONG WITH GOD AS THE SUN
STORMS. Baal was the original storm God but Israel appropriated his traits for YHVH's, who originally was a Mountain God.
"IN MY HEARING...NOT YOURS"
A VOICE AND A TRUMPET ARE TWO DIFFERENT THINGS. ALSO HEAD ONLY IN JOHN'S HEAD
THOUGH THEY DIDN'T UNDERSTAND IT OR HEAR IT AS A VOICE.
So which is it ?
Mr. Dick, who came to Ambassador as a married student in 1957, told how it all began for him during the Days of Unleavened Bread in 1967.
“During the afternoon sermon on the first day of Unleavened Bread at Ambassador College in Big Sandy, Texas, Mr. Ted Armstrong [vice chancellor of Ambassador and son of church founder Herbert Armstrong] shocked his audience by saying the Jews had to build a temple,” said Mr. Dick.
“The only place to build it was on the Temple Mount in East Jerusalem, so something had to happen soon to place it under Israel’s control. Remember, this was April 1967, and the church was expected to flee [to Petra, in Jordan] in 1972.
“The main announcement that afternoon was about establishing an office and having a contract for The World Tomorrow.”
Reg Killingly has an article about what it means to "turn the other cheek", something CEM needs to take into consideration as it prepares to sue Allie Dart's Ronald Dart Evangelist Association (not mentioned in this issue.)
Jesus, though, is telling His followers that they should not seek payback for hurt. His disciples should not behave as normal.
It would be hard enough to obey if He were telling them—and us—simply not to retaliate, not to hit back when hurt.
But Jesus doesn’t stop there. The response He expects goes much further. He tells His disciples: Don’t just passively refrain from retaliation but proactively seek to behave in a way that defies every expectation. Do the diametrically opposite thing. Your response must be 180 degrees from what it normally would have been.
Michael Harris has an article about how the church still has a long way to go when it comes to dealing with gay/lesbian members (of which there are quite a few spread across the various COGs)In other words, don’t just not retaliate. Actively help your adversary.
But has the Church of God always offered a balanced and biblical approach to
ministering to people who are homosexual?
No! No, the Church of God is not always balanced and loving towards people like me.
‘Call them queers!’
I remember years ago when a prominent Worldwide Church of God minister came to speak in our congregation. He was known for his outspokenness in condemning gays, so I knew what was coming.
As he shouted out “Brethren, call them all queers! That’s what they are!” I sat in my seat in literal pain waiting for his ranting to stop.
This man’s sermon did not help me. It left me hurting. It was not a godly way to respond to the issue of homosexuality or to minister to people who experience homosexual temptations.
Lest you think it cannot get any crazier, there is this about Art Mokarow, the "Ministering Sparrow.".President Trump has been made aware of his likeness to King Cyrus by the religious people in Israel. And Christ using his brashness and lack of fear of what anyone thinks of his decisions will stir up his mind at the exact time to make the proclamation. With his support, the Jewish people will begin the sacrificial offerings and laying the foundation for the new Temple.
You too can read this second to the last issue of The Journal here. Issue 201
Herbert W. Armstrong: Racist
By M.A.M.In the June-July 1981 issue of The Good News, there is an article titled “After 50 Years – Christ’s Apostle Still Ahead of His Time!” Like just about everything else published by the Worldwide Church of God about Herbert W. Armstrong, this is a lie. Herbert W. Armstrong was a man whose feet were firmly planted in the past. Within his church, Armstrong tried to re-create the world of his youth.
We can see the theme arise again and again in his writings. In Mystery of the Ages, Armstrong wrote, “I have lived through the horse and buggy age, the automobile and industrial age, the air age, the nuclear age and now into the space age. I have seen America live through the agrarian age when farmers walked behind their horse-drawn ploughs singing happily, and into the urban age when Midwest American farmers are groaning and fighting for more government subsidies to prevent the extinction of farm life. (page vii).” For farmers at least, the past was better than the present.
Armstrong’s love for the past surfaced again shortly after the murder of John Lennon. “In disgust, I left TV, but at 10 p.m., I tuned in for the LOCAL news. It was all eulogizing the ‘rock’ ‘musician.’ A local Tucson crowd of 2,000 had flocked to Reid Park bandshell to leave roses, and mourn for their dead idol. The local station had a lot about the ‘man and his “music.”’ (I had never thought of it as music, but a loud raucous SQUAWK and SCREAM with a fast beat - just an irritating noise.)
“Pardon me, please! Perhaps I never had any musical education, although I have played the piano since 8 years old. I must have been terribly misled, for I supposed that the singing of a Caruso or a Galli-Curci of my father's time or a Pavarotti or Beverly Sills or an Arthur Rubinstein of our day produced music. I guess I'm terribly out-of-date. I have heard roosters make a loud raucous squawk when being captured for a Sunday dinner when I was a boy, but I just never had been ‘educated’ to call that ‘music.’
“When as a boy I worked one summer in a flour mill, to the constant ‘beat’ of the machinery till it nearly drove me crazy, I somehow never realized that was ‘music.’
“Please bear with me in my ignorance.” I'll try, but it isn't easy. At least here he was being truthful. Armstrong was ignorant of popular music. A strong beat has been a characteristic of popular music since the rise of jazz, right after the first world war. Apparently, Armstrong was unaware of anything that occurred outside of the opera house since Caruso's time.
“I do remember, when I was in England at the college just before the mid-'60's, the Beatles were breaking into public notice. The had a new ‘way-out’ style, with an idiotic mop-topped hairstyle, with hair covering the forehead to the eyebrows, the ears and longer hair in the back of the head. The forehead is the seat of intellect - the mark of intelligence instead of animal nonintelligence. They started the style of male hairdo to turn evolution into reverse - man was becoming a dumb brute animal.”
The new music was just “a loud raucous SQUAWK and SCREAM with a fast beat - just an irritating noise.” The new hair style “turn[ed] evolution into reverse - man was becoming a dumb brute animal (The Worldwide News, “How The Beatles Changed The Culture of the Western World,” December 22, 1980, page 1).” These were not the reasoned words of an open-minded, enlightened man. They were the belittling comments of someone who refused to accept the present. If Armstrong did not like the way a person combed his hair, he resorted to name-calling and insults, even equating him to an animal.
On page 158 of The Missing Dimension in Sex, Armstrong again belittles modern popular music: “WHO determines what is ‘popular music’ today? The ‘teens.’ Even the radio stations who do not go to rock and disco music, in the main, play what is called ‘popular’ music. But is it MUSIC? Or is it a moan, a groan, a wail, a dirge, and a screech?”
Anyone who was single in the Worldwide Church of God would be aware of the courtship rituals enforced by the ministry. These were based on the dating “procedures” (See The Missing Dimension in Sex, page 154) Herbert Armstrong practiced in his youth. After all, if God’s Apostle followed certain “procedures,” they were God ordained and all should follow them. We’ve all heard them: date in groups, date in order to develop friendships, don’t date for the purpose of finding a mate, don’t be alone with a person of the opposite sex, don’t date outside the church, date widely. In theory, these practices would prevent one from marrying the wrong person or committing fornication. They would expose you to a wide variety of people, and develop your interpersonal skills. In practice, they made dating unnecessarily difficult, and made it much harder to find a mate by erecting all sorts of artificial obstacles. It also put you under a microscope because if you followed the prohibition against being alone with a member of the opposite sex, you had no privacy. In addition, the church was full of people who refused to mind their own business, and asked prying questions. If you were seen together at church services, rumors would sweep through the congregation. Last, but not least, you had ministers watching you, enforcing Herbert’s will on the dating question. Ministerial meddling was common. All of those I know who were single in the church had at least one serious relationship ended by ministerial diktat.
When Armstrong was a child, back in eighteen-ninety-whatever, women didn't wear make-up. Naturally, it follows that he wouldn't let women wear make-up in his church. To Armstrong, make-up was “physical colored dirt” that deceitful women wore. In his classic booklet The Truth About Make-Up, Armstrong wrote, “Its modern, popular and almost universal use today originated with the harlots of Paris. From there it traveled to the old redlight districts of San Francisco, Denver, New Orleans, Chicago, New York and other American cities. Then it was used by the streetwalker prostitutes to attract and seduce men.
“My wife remembered an incident that occurred when she was a little girl nine years old. Her father ran a small town general store. In the store she found two small packages of face powder, one white, the other red. She began to apply some of the colored powder to her face. Her mother saw her, and quickly took the powder away from her.“‘No, no! Loma,’ said her mother. ‘You mustn't ever put that on your face. Only the bad women use that!’”
Apparently, Loma found this incident so traumatic that years later, she was psychologically unable to confront her husband about his incestuous relationship with their daughter.
“My mother - before she died - remembered that she used to apply a little powder on her cheeks but didn't seem to remember at what time this custom started. But she did distinctly remember that her mother never once applied powder, paint, or any kind of cosmetics whatsoever to her face. She was a very virtuous and religious woman, and in her time "only the bad women" put paint or powder on their faces. My own mother very emphatically declared that no lipstick ever touched her lips - a fact in which she took great satisfaction.” Yes, only harlots wore make-up, while the spiritually pure kept their faces free of the colored dirt. If it was true, as Armstrong claimed, that in his youth only prostitutes wore make-up, it was true of all times and places.
With his adoration for the past, it is no surprise that Armstrong’s views on race relations remained unchanged from his youth. Segregation, bans on interracial dating and marriage, and the inferiority of the “Negro” race were things he took for granted. As his article in the October, 1963 Plain Truth demonstrated, Armstrong cloaked the racial prejudice practiced in the Jim Crow south with Biblical garb. His attempt to make racism Biblical is truly astonishing.
Armstrong went to his grave without changing his opinions on race. In Mystery of the Ages, Armstrong lays out his racial theories in a book published just a few months before his death. Support for segregation, a distaste for interracial marriage, and a belief in black inferiority are all on display in his final book:
“The subject matter of the chapter [Genesis 6] is the generations ancestry of Noah. Exceeding wickedness had developed through those generations, by Noah's generation reaching a climactic crisis that ended that world.
“What was this universal evil and corruption? Jesus described that universal, corrupt evil as ‘eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage’ (Matt. 24:38). Eating food and drinking is not evil. Marrying is not evil in itself. There had to be wrong use and excess in eating, drinking and marrying - the evil was in the manner, and in the extent of eating, drinking and marrying.“It could only be eating improper food, drinking excessively of alcoholic drinks, revelings (Gal. 5:21), rioting, violence. Marrying, to be evil, had to be as in Genesis 6:2, when men ‘took them wives of all which they chose.’ There was rampant and universal interracial marriage - so exceedingly universal that Noah, only, was unblemished or perfect in his generations - his ancestry. He was of the original white strain.“It is amply evident that by the time of Noah there were at least the three primary or major racial strains on earth, the white, yellow and black, although interracial marriage produced many racial mixtures.“God does not reveal in the Bible the precise origin of the different races. It is evident that Adam and Eve were created white. God's chosen nation Israel was white. Jesus was white. But it is a fair conjecture that in mother Eve were created ovaries containing the yellow and black genes, as well as white, so that some of the children of Adam and Eve gave rise to black, yellow, as well as white.“The one man God chose to PRESERVE the human race alive after the Flood was perfect in his generations - all his ancestry back to Adam was of the one strain, and undoubtedly that happened to be white - not that white is in any sense superior.” So Armstrong says. But you’ll notice that he believes that Adam and Eve were white, and so was Noah and Jesus and the twelve apostles. Armstrong tries to convince us that the white race is not superior in his eyes, but he strongly implies that it is preferred in God's eyes.“If you are a livestock breeder, planning to enter your prize animals in a livestock show - perhaps at a state or county fair - you will be sure to enter only thoroughbred or pedigreed stock! Mixing the breed alters the characteristics.“God originally set the bounds of national borders, intending nations to be SEPARATED to prevent interracial marriage. Notice, "When the most High divided to the nations their inheritance [speaking of land or geographical boundaries], when he separated, [notice - he separated] the sons of Adam, he set the bounds of the people..." (Deut. 32:8).“But people wanted to intermarry - until there would be only ONE RACE!“That desire seems still inherent in human nature today!“Noah was of perfect lineage in his generations. His wife and three sons were of that same white strain. But Japheth evidently had married an Oriental woman, and Ham a black.“We know little more than stated above about civilized development prior to the Flood. (Pages 147-149, emphasis his throughout.)”Where he developed this theory, I don’t know. There is no Biblical support for this point of view. One can only conclude that these were the opinions with which Armstrong started, and he interpreted the Bible to conform to his opinions.
Incredibly, Armstrong predicted that the Kingdom of God would be segregated. God would appoint the resurrected Noah as his Minister of Racial Purity to supervise the separation of the races.
“Since Noah lived first, we now take a look at Noah. In Noah's day, the chief cause of the violence and chaos of world conditions was racial hatreds, interracial marriages, and racial violence caused by man's efforts toward integration and amalgamation of races, contrary to God's laws. God had set the boundary lines for the nations and the races at the beginning (Deut. 32:8-9; Acts 17:26). But men had refused to remain in the lands to which God had assigned them. That was the cause of the corruption and violence that ended that world. For 120 years Noah had preached God's ways to the people - but they didn't heed.“At that time, even as today, that world faced a population explosion. It was when ‘men began to multiply on the face of the earth’ (Gen. 6:1). Jesus said, of our time, right now, ‘But as the days of Noe [Noah] were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be’ (Matt. 24:37) - or, as in Luke 17:26, ‘And as it was in the days of Noe, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man.’ That is, the days just before Christ returns. Today race wars, race hatreds, race riots and race problems are among the world's greatest social troubles.“Noah merely preached to people in his human lifetime. But Noah, in the resurrection, immortal, in power and glory, will be given the power to enforce God's ways in regard to race.“It seems evident that the resurrected Noah will head a vast project of the relocation of the races and nations, within the boundaries God has set for their own best good, happiness and richest blessings. This will be a tremendous operation. It will require great and vast organization, reinforced with power to move whole nations and races. This time, peoples and nations will move where God has planned for them, and no defiance will be tolerated.“What a paradox. People are going to be forced to be happy, to have peace, to find abundant and joyful living! (Pages 341-342.)”How would they be made happy? By not having to associate with those of other races. Armstrong blamed many of the world’s problems on the integration of the races. The cure would be the re-institution of segregation. The world’s problems would be solved by apartheid. In this and many other areas, Herbert was a man behind the times. He either couldn’t or wouldn’t change. Although he claimed to be God’s Apostle, when it came to race he was more like the Grand Dragon of the Ku Klux Klan.
There is a new website up called FaithLeaks that seeks transparency of faith communities and to hold them accountable for what they do and say.
This is their mission statement
FaithLeaks is a non profit media organization founded on the belief that increased transparency within religious organizations results in fewer untruths, less corruption, and less abuse. The organization provides sources and whistleblowers the technical ability to anonymously submit sensitive documents for use by professional and citizen journalists for starting and expanding news reporting, public commentary, and criticism related to religion.
FaithLeaks is a project by the Truth and Transparency Foundation, a non profit founded by Ryan McKnight and Ethan Dodge in November 2017.They provide an avenue for church members and information on how to anonymously submit sensitive documents. They use SecureDrop...
Like other whistle-blower organizations, FaithLeaks provides sources the ability to anonymously submit sensitive documents, which the site then posts publicly. FaithLeaks uses SecureDrop, an encrypted open-source system that is also used by media outlets including the New York Timesand ProPublica. SecureDrop uses the anonymizing Tor network to facilitate submissions that leave no trace online. Founded by two former Mormons in November, FaithLeaks believes that “increased transparency within religious organizations results in fewer untruths, less corruption, and less abuse.” A New “Wikileaks for Religion” Publishes Its First Trove of Documents
Their first big trove of documents to be dumped concerns sexual abuse in a Jehovah's Witness church and how church leaders attempted to cover it all up.
FaithLeaks Releases Documents Surrounding Sexual Abuse Investigation in Jehovah’s Witness Congregation
The documents released this week span from 1999 to 2012, and they’re devastating. They include details about accusations by three women against one church member. The first case involves allegations made by the man’s adult daughter, who accused him of sexual and physical abuse that began when she was 5 years old. (Names have been redacted in all the FaithLeaks documents.) Another daughter and an unrelated woman later came forward to make abuse accusations against the same man; the second daughter said her father had begun to “fondle and touch” her at the age of 3, and began raping her at 8. A New “Wikileaks for Religion” Publishes Its First Trove of DocumentsOn a secret COG facebook page, there have been reports by people sending in information about the Philadelphia Church of God and Restored Church of God. One LCG member also claims to be gathering information to send in.
The founders of FaithLeaks hope to shed light on corruption and cover-ups within other religious communities going forward. “Our goal is to reduce the amount of deception and untruths and unethical behaviors that exist in some facets of religion,” Ryan McKnight told Religion News Service. “If someone is in possession of documents they feel deserve to be made public, we’re simply here to help facilitate that.” McKnight and his co-founder, Ethan Dodge, say they are particularly interested in documents related to finances, congregational policies and procedures, and information on sex-abuse settlements.
It’s easy to imagine FaithLeaks being used by whistle-blowers within a wide range of religious communities, but it’s notable that so far the greatest interest and excitement seems to be coming from former Scientologists, Jehovah’s Witnesses, and Mormons. These are organizations that are famously secretive and close-knit, and which can be hard for members to publicly criticize. (Individual Protestant churches can be authoritarian and secretive, too, but there are usually dozens of local competitors, which makes it relatively easy for disgruntled congregants to simply leave. A New “Wikileaks for Religion” Publishes Its First Trove of Documents