Articles on this Page
- 01/23/16--13:53: _Ron Dart Has Died (...
- 01/23/16--16:50: _Why Are LCG Ministe...
- 01/24/16--13:56: _COGWA Members Say I...
- 01/24/16--17:59: _COG False Prophet S...
- 01/25/16--15:58: _COG Members Sick of...
- 01/25/16--22:15: _I too am a child su...
- 01/26/16--10:51: _God Punishes Kentuc...
- 01/26/16--18:00: _COG Prophet Declare...
- 01/27/16--21:54: _It's OK to salt unl...
- 01/28/16--23:52: _Why God Does Not An...
- 01/31/16--08:38: _Wanton ladies in th...
- 01/31/16--12:18: _"It is the duty of ...
- 02/02/16--12:43: _Jesus and Apostle P...
- 02/02/16--23:29: _COGWA and Living Ch...
- 02/05/16--08:39: _UCG: Even though th...
- 02/07/16--13:54: _The "Loose Brick Th...
- 02/07/16--14:38: _Dave Pack: Rejecti...
- 02/07/16--14:48: _Rod Meredith Looks ...
- 02/08/16--23:40: _How the Living Chur...
- 02/09/16--09:28: _Ingrained Negativit...
- 01/23/16--13:53: Ron Dart Has Died (updated)
- 01/25/16--15:58: COG Members Sick of the divisive church divisions
- 01/26/16--10:51: God Punishes Kentucky and California Because of Joe Biden
- 01/26/16--18:00: COG Prophet Declares New Zealand is NOT the Place of Safety!
- 01/28/16--23:52: Why God Does Not Answer Prayers?
- 01/31/16--08:38: Wanton ladies in the Church of God
- 02/02/16--12:43: Jesus and Apostle Paul HATE the Super Bowl!
- 02/02/16--23:29: COGWA and Living Church of God, The Meeting That Wasn't A Meeting
- 02/07/16--13:54: The "Loose Brick Theology" of Armstrongism
- 02/07/16--14:38: Dave Pack: Rejecting me will lead to your utter destruction!
- 02/07/16--14:48: Rod Meredith Looks Into The Hearts Of Men
- 02/08/16--23:40: How the Living Church of God Treats Dogs
- 02/09/16--09:28: Ingrained Negativity in the Churches of God
I believe in the resurrection from the dead, by which man's mortal and decayed body will be changed in the twinkling of an eye at the last trumpet into a new body that can never die.
I believe that the Greater Church of God is composed of all the saints, those in whom the Holy Spirit dwells, who are called according to God's purpose.
(from his Confession of Faith)
From his Facebook page:
Ronald L. Dart died peacefully in his sleep early this Sabbath morning, January 23rd, from a prolonged battle with cutaneous T-cell lymphoma. His remarkable gift of clarity and love and understanding of the Bible were devoted to teaching others.
Why is Wakefield's 3800 square foot home with an estimated worth of $712,000 (with only Wakefield and his wife living in it) acceptable but the brethren are chastised for sitting on hundreds of thousands, even millions of dollars and property?While the lowly members are expected to sacrifice and disinherit children, the ministry still sit by their cozy fires night after night. Sacrifice is not a quality any of them have.
Rod Meredith: Personal - Pray for Our Financial Growth!
Rod Meredith is not happy that LCG members are "sitting on millions of dollars worth of money and property" instead of giving it to the church
LCG Fails to be good stewards of God's money.
If Rod Meredith is truly considering merging with the Church of God a Worldwide Association (COGWA) he is going to be in for a big shock. While some in the leadership may want to do this, the members do NOT! Many are saying they will return to United Church of God before their feet ever grace the door of an LCG church. What a stinging indictment that is!
Also it is interesting to note is that COGWA ministers are preaching about Rod Meredith's "issues" (his preoccupation with homosexuality) and that he has become "unhinged." Its a sad indicator to LCG members if COGWA ministers are publicly bad mouthing Rod Meredith. This is starting to look like the epic failure of Dave Pack where he thinks tens of thousands of COG members will soon be joining his church.
Really AWKWARD!! How do we in COGWA, who have listened for a while now to insinuations about Rod Meredith’s “issues” given his pre-occupation with rants against homosexuals, and suggestions that he has “come unhinged” with his new teachings of a rapture (something to do with the timeline of the wedding supper) all coming from our own ministers (and I hear also from friends in the UK that these thoughts are also disseminated by the COGWA leadership there)—- how are we expected to happily ‘merge’ with a group that we are told is so way off-base?! In our immediate circles at services today we all pretty much agreed that if this merger happened, most of COGWA would flee back to UCG — a windfall for them. LCG would inherit a hefty payroll with insufficient tithe-payers to support it. For my husband and I it would confirm our worst fears since the beginning that Franks & Co. were perhaps just financial opportunists in the first split, and are doing the same again with no principles — and we would certainly be back in UCG. Certainly we never understood making merchandise of the brethren as well as we do now. Shining Light comments
Also to note, is the distaste that COGWA members seem to have for Jim Franks and crew. They are referred to as "financial opportunists."
LCG COGWA can not join because it is unequally yoked, Jim Franks represents a corrupt leader, full of ambition, Walker, Langarica sacked the United Church of God in South America and Franks knows, out corrupt leaders, hopefully this is just rumor, LCG should not thieves at his side. Ali Franks and the 40 Thieves.
It should be quite obvious that not only is Living Church of God having member issues, but COGWA, UCG, PCG and RCG are too. Members are starting to rebel again at the appalling things they are being going on in their churches. Yet, the ministers and hierarchy continue to turn a blind eye and pretend that things have never been better in the church. As I have said before, the church is eating itself alive. Persecution is not coming from the outside, but from within.
Only in Armstrongism (and World Net Daily) can such stupidity abound:
Bob Thiel writes;
I would suggest that if this particular storm “Jonas” was a punishment for a recent action, it was more likely a punishment for US Vice President Biden’s promotion of the LGBT agenda at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland on Wednesday ss opposed to the lifting of sanctions related to the Iranian deal.
Because the Bible does ties aspects of the LGBT agenda in with weather punishments (cf. Amos 4:7-12). Plus the Bible teaches that God will remove “the protection from Judah” (the nation currently called Israel) and perhaps allow the Iranians to damage it (cf. Isaiah 22:6-8).
Bitter Bob's bumbling proof?
Scripture is clear that God controls the weather and sometimes provides extreme weather for correction. And that includes snowy weather. Notice the following:
5 God thunders marvelously with His voice; He does great things which we cannot comprehend. 6 For He says to the snow, ‘Fall on the earth’;… 9 From the chamber of the south comes the whirlwind, And cold from the scattering winds of the north. 10 By the breath of God ice is given, And the broad waters are frozen. 11 Also with moisture He saturates the thick clouds; He scatters His bright clouds. 12 And they swirl about, being turned by His guidance, That they may do whatever He commands them On the face of the whole earth. 13 He causes it to come, Whether for correction, Or for His land, Or for mercy. (Job 37:5-6, 9-13)22 “Have you entered the treasury of snow, Or have you seen the treasury of hail, 23 Which I have reserved for the time of trouble, For the day of battle and war? (Job 38:22-23)
A reader here shares his/her story:
I believe my mother was drawn to the Radio Church of God broadcast because she was so emotionally unstable and unhappy. I think like all cults, it drew folk with deep emotional/spiritual voids. And folk with mental health issues. I remember being abused physically by my mother in the guise of "discipline" as taught by the church when it actually became a physical church that she could attend - the World Wide Church of God. The "discipline" progressed to a 2 by 4 board. I can't blame the church on all the abuse suffered at the hands of my mother, given she had begun the abuse years prior to her discovering the Radio Church of God. Both my parents came to the marriage with lots of unresolved baggage. Within three years, my mother had three children and a husband who worked late most nights. And she was Jewish, he Methodist. She raised in a pampered creative, city family life. He from a sheltered, poor farm upbringing.
I know I was damaged even before my mother started going to Armstrong's church. But her becoming part of it all, was devastating to us kids and my father. Before she joined the church, we had Chanukah and Christmas and of course all the other holidays and festivities that are considered traditional. I remember the day the men in dark suits came to our house. My Dad was at work. From that day forward, she stopped smoking, never wore makeup again and life was never the same in our house. No more birthdays, nothing. I was about 9, my younger brother 7 and my older brother 10. No explanation, nothing, Just all of a sudden everything changed. It further put a wedge between my parents and he recognized quickly that her church was "nuts". His response was to delve deeper into his job. To be abused at home and have such a volatile mother and then have to attend long church services with her and sermons about 'the Lake of Fire" and kids are sinful and need to receive the rod and the never ending sermons on the Book of Revelation and the tribulation and the end of the world - it was frightening to me. I had nightmares throughout my childhood. Even after her church became more mainstream and "normalized", she still hung on to some of the old teachings esp. regarding the world coming to an end. The last words I ever heard from her, at my last visit a few months before her death she said" It's only going to get worse". and I knew she was referencing the end times. For supposedly loving the Lord and being born again, she was miserable. And her minister never wanted to address the issues in our house and help with it.
Anyway, I joined the army just to get out of the house, after I graduated high school. It took me years to be comfortable celebrating birthdays and holidays. Now, I love to celebrate those. I do believe her religion greatly affected my spiritual path which has led me to atheism. It has been an agonizing path. Living a human life without religion and all the camaraderie a church can provide, has been lonely indeed. My trust in people has been damaged. I do feel I am the victim of religious abuse. even hearing the word God triggers my PTSD. I have had to pay quite a bit of money over the years for psychotherapy. I'd have loved to have sent that bill to H. Armstrong.
You have my permission to print this
According to Prophet Bob Thiel, the East coast was punished by snow this past weekend because Vice President Joe Biden made some remarks that were gay friendly while in Europe. As a result Kentucky was severely punished with beauty and charm.
Meanwhile in California, all those gays caused record amounts of snow to fall in the Sierra's that will greatly benefit the state later this spring and summer.
God's most highly favored prophet and leader of the ONLY true church active in 2016, Bob Thiel, has declared that New Zealand is NOT the place of safety! Who knew!
Super rich hedge fund managers are buying ‘secret boltholes’ where they can hideout in the event of civil uprising against growing inequality, it has been claimed.
Nervous financiers from across the globe have begun purchasing landing strips, homes and land in areas such as New Zealand so they can flee should people rise up.
Thiel then adds:
With growing inequality and riots such as those in London in 2011 and in Ferguson and other parts of the USA last year, many financial leaders fear they could become targets for public fury.
Jesus taught that a very rough time was going to come:
21 For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be. 22 And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved; but for the elect’s sake those days will be shortened. (Matthew 24:21-22) Is the solution to attempt to hide in a country such as New Zealand?
The prophet continues:
While there is a certain escape involved in this, the protected Christians are not going to their personal ‘bolthouses,’ but are going to a place that God has prepared in the wilderness. And this is NOT a wilderness in New Zealand.
While Thiel does not mention Petra is this tirade, he has in the past publicly preached that it is the place of safety. The place where only his chosen will be able to gather at his feet to be taught words of wisdom.
Then in one finally jab at New Zealand, he writes:
As far as New Zealand goes, many do not realize that the British-peoples in New Zealand are actually descendants of the biblical Joseph’s son Ephraim, the grandson of Jacob. Because of that, New Zealand will be affected by “the time of Jacob’s trouble” (Jeremiah 30:7).
Since those in New Zealand will be greatly affected by the Great Tribulation, any wealthy who attempt to escape there will find that they trusted too much in their wealth (cf. Matthew 10:24), instead of trusting the Bible. A place of safety will be prepared for the true Philadelphians, but one cannot simply buy admission to it (Revelation 3:7-13; Luke 21:36).
With the demise of the Worldwide Church of God various groups broke off trying to preserve the law with even more extreme measures. Everyone of these groups claim that only they are right and the others are apostate heretics. Everyone tries to out do the other group when it comes to all keeping.
That Judaizing continues on today with the Chief Pharisee of the Churches of God who claims only he has the really understanding of the law. For several years now James Malm has been rewriting the bible to fit his own twisted interpretations.
One of his acolytes recently asked about salting unleavened bread. We are getting up to that season, remember.... The fact that someone had to even ask for permission shows how brainwashed his followers are.
A question has come about salting the unleavened bread for Passover and the sacrifices and I have added the following explanation to the Leviticus 2:13 post.
All Unleavened Bread for Passover, the Feast of Unleavened Bread and the sacrifices is to be seasoned with salt as commanded in Lev 2:13.
Salt is a preservative which is added to indicate the eternal everlasting nature of our Covenant with God and our faithful everlasting abiding in that Covenant (Numbers 18:19).
Then the Chief Pharisee moves on to what is supposedly "clean" and "unclean." As usual in the mind of an Armstrongite, that is open to interpretation, and interpret his own views is what he does.
Here are his convoluted ideas he passes off as "truth."
While we are commanded to not even touch a dead unclean animal, many sects claim that the commandment is only concerned with eating the flesh. Using that false premise they say that any other products from dead unclean creatures may be used at will.
Living “unclean” animals are not unclean to touch and neither is the hair or wool sheared from living animals; it is the DEAD animals that are unclean and not to by eaten or even touched. That means that the skin and furs of dead unclean animals are not to be touched.
We may not eat, use or touch the dead body of any creature that does not BOTH chew the cud and split the hoof among animals, or any under water creature that does not have BOTH fins and scales at the time we take it. We may not eat, use or touch the dead body of any bird that does not have a crop and is not able to fly, nor can we eat any insect that does not have both legs for leaping and wings for flying.
To even touch the carcass [dead body] of an unclean creature; becomes unclean and must bathe and be unclean until the sun is set.
To touch the dead body makes one unclean and if we wear skins and furs from unclean creatures it is as if we have eaten them; for both acts make us unclean.Dang it! Now that I have my alligator boots broken in I have to throw them out!
The next time you pick up the dead bird carcass your cat brings in or that lizard, you are unclean the second you touch it. Slide on those comfy Hush Puppies made with pig skin and your are unclean! Wear those alligator cowboy boots and you are unclean. Carry that camel purse and you are unclean!
Next he tries to make his acolytes do the impossible. Any follower of the new covenant knows that what he writes is a lot of useless hooey.
We should be zealous to be physically clean, in our overwhelmingly unclean world; and we should go forward from the physical; to be zealous to become spiritually clean, without any spot, blemish or wrinkle of spiritual uncleanness or sin.
We should be as shocked, disgusted and appalled at the very idea of eating some scripturally unclean thing, or for some spiritual uncleanness and sin like calling the Sabbath holy and then paying others to serve us; as we would be if we were served a bowl of sewage.
This is the kind off crap that is fostered off as truth when you leave Jesus out of the picture.
Then the Chief Pharisee has this to say about women who have children. If you have a daughter it is even worse!
If the child is female the mother’s separation shall be double that of a male child
12:5 But if she bear a maid child, then she shall be unclean two weeks, as in her separation: and she shall continue in the blood of her purifying threescore and six  days.
66 days plus two weeks is 80 days. My wife and I practiced this by mutual consent for our three sons and one daughter.
We make these specified sacrificial offerings to day, by going to God the Father in prayer and asking that the sacrifice of Christ be applied to us and to the child, setting apart the child through our faithfulness, and asking for an understanding of these things.
A sin offering for the shed blood; which goes back to Eden where sin and bloodshed entered the world and a burden was placed on women for that sin, as a perpetual reminder of sin (Gen 3:16); the sin offering for the mother, being the application of Christ’s sacrifice for the repentant obedient woman. And a burnt offering to demonstrate the wholehearted faithful service to God the Father and Jesus Christ and those of like-mind.What a relief to be free from this tyranny!
Many pastors and preachers will try to tell you that the reason God does not answer prayer is because of your sins, or because you are asking for the wrong things, or you ask something that is not the will of God, or perhaps you ask in lust or you ask amiss or your prayer is not according to scripture.
Are those valid reasons why God does not answer prayer? What if you pray to God, but you are not a Christian? Perhaps you pray, but your beliefs differ from those who read the King James Bible.
What if your country or nation is being bombed and attacked, as happened to Iraq and you prayed to God or Allah, but the death and destruction happened anyway? What if members of your family perished in war and you prayed your heart out?
What if you were a church going Christian and a tornado ripped through your neighborhood and destroyed many homes and even the lives of other church goers? What then? What if a horrendous earthquake happened when you were living in California and freeways collapsed upon cars and crushed church going Christians to death?
What if your child developed leukemia and you as parents and your church going friends, prayed with all your might for healing and the child died anyway? What then?
Does God really answer prayer? Why would God selectively answer the prayers of some, but neglect the prayers of millions of other human beings?
I once read that a man was driving his vehicle and suddenly the thought came to him, that he should not go around a curve ahead and sure enough a truck came around in a manner that would have resulted in a head-on collision. Was that God? The man thought so. Why would God put that thought in his mind, while allowing 50,000 other people to die in auto accidents that same year?
Many people attribute "healing" recovery to God, but at the same time there are thousands of others who are not healed. Why would God heal some people and not others? Makes no sense whatsoever.
Even in sports, many sports players thank God for their victory, as if God micro-managed their winning game? Is that really just a false belief?
Why on earth would God place a priority over a football or basketball game, while allowing thousands of people to die in wars, tornadoes, hurricanes, cancer, auto accidents or whatever???
Christians and church goers seem to live in a fantasy world about answered prayer. Some Christians think God directed them to get a job flipping hamburgers, and then when they want to go elsewhere, suddenly God directed them to go to work for another business. Is that God?
Does God really micromanage the lives of human beings? If he did, then do humans have freewill? Would God really cause you to buy a lottery ticket, in which you won $200-million dollars?
After 73 years of living on planet earth, I would have to come to the conclusion that church going Christians are very gullible and naive human beings, with almost zero discernment about God or reality. And the belief that INK on PAPER is "inspired" by God, is a fatal false belief.
The Chief Pharisee is back proclaiming his version of what he wants scripture to say. Like so much of ht time it seems to be that the women get the short end of the stick. Ever since Eve gave Adam that juicy red apple while he was standing right next to her, women have been the cause of most evil in the world, at least in the eyes of religious dictators.
The Church of God has never been an exception to that. From idiotic rants by Meredith and Waterhouse, to the dictates of Herbert Armstrong and Garner Ted in numerous articles and booklets. Even though many of the hierarchy of the COG could never keep their pants zipped, it was always the women's fault. And so it is today with James Malm.
Some of the wanton things COG women do are
Mess around with astrology and horoscopes:
I have noticed since I was first baptized in 1976 that the observing of times and horoscopes which is forbidden as an abomination by God, is commonly practiced in the Ekklesia especially by ladies. This is a grave sin which will keep you out of the resurrection to spirit
Buy mixed fabrics:
We are not to mix seed or fibers in cloth, or to mix kinds of animals. The focus on this is PURITY. The spiritual lesson is to keep ourselves PURE and unspotted by the false doctrines and prophecies of false religions. We are not to allow our white linen garments of righteousness to become mixed with the fibers of unrighteousness and error and sin, of impurity and defilement of false ways.
Let men perform oral sex on them before marriage:
I have heard of many cases where women have been convinced by their men friends that oral or manual sex is not really sex, and they then do this, thinking themselves to still be virgins.
The Chief Pharisee has laid down his law again this time lashing out at homosexuals. In his eyes it is appropriate that Iran hangs young men and that Isis throws them off of buildings. When Malm speaks it is quit obvious as to what happens to the mind of people who are obsessed with legalism. Like Meredith, Malm apparently is sinless, therefore he can be the accuser of humankind and feel justified in doing so. James Malm would be quite excited to see Canada and the U.S. do such things below.
God loves the homosexual, therefore the deeds of homosexuals are an abomination to God; and the homosexual person is to be killed so that his example does not infect others. Today there are millions who not only commit this wickedness; they loudly proclaim pride in their sin, so that their sin exceeds that of Sodom. This is the duty of the government and no individual is to take it upon himself to attack anyone.
Well here we go again. God's most highly blessed prophet/apostle/chief overseer and dream weaver to ever grace the presence of humankind is back again telling us that REAL Christians will NOT be watching the Super Bowl football game this weekend. Jesus will NOT be watching the game and neither should you!
The doubly blessed dream-world prophet Bob Thiel writes:
Would Jesus want you to watch the Super Bowl? What about the Apostle Paul who warned against approving violence? The same Apostle Paul who said to imitate him as he imitated Christ (1 Corinthians 11:1). Would Jesus or the Apostle Paul watch the Superbowl as football fans rooting for one team to crush the other team?God's end time man also says:
The New Testament also warns Christians against being violent or approving of those that are (Romans 1:28-32), while history records that early Christians would not watch violent sports. Notice one such report from Theophilus of Antioch perhaps written about 180 A.D.:
Consider, therefore, whether those who teach such things can possibly live indifferently, and be commingled in unlawful intercourse, or, most impious of all, eat human flesh, especially when we are forbidden so much as to witness shows of gladiators, lest we become partakers and abettors of murders. But neither may we see the other spectacles, lest our eyes and ears be defiled, participating in the utterances there sung. (Theophilus of Antioch. To Autolycus, Book III, Chapter XV. Translated by Marcus Dods, A.M. Excerpted from Ante-Nicene Fathers, Volume 2. Edited by Alexander Roberts & James Donaldson. American Edition, 1885. Online Edition)
The apostle also writes:
Since American football games, like the Super Bowl, intentionally inflict various hurts, the following scripture supports the idea that American football will not be allowed in the Millennium:
9 They shall not hurt nor destroy in all My holy mountain, For the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord As the waters cover the sea. (Isaiah 11:9, NKJV)
While “love does no harm to a neighbor” (Romans 13:9), what do sports like American football do?
The doubly blessed prophet declares:
If Jesus Himself did watch the Super Bowl, would He watch it and hope that one team would tackle and crash into members of the other team? Or might He watch it, if He did, so He could make social commentary against the violence and/or distorted priorities of the land?
Would Jesus take pleasure in humans damaging other humans for entertainment?
Its always fascinating to see COG false prophets whine and bellyache about all kinds of perceived evils in the world, but never lift a hand to feed the hungry, house the homeless and care for the sick. Their empty platitudes about some wonderful kingdom to come to the frozen chosen is empty and shallow.
It'd been a week since the love fest between administrators of COGWA popped into Charlotte for coffee and scones with Rod Meredith and crew. This was a meeting where absolutely nothing was implied other than brothers getting together for some warm chats, or at least that's the story LCG and COGWA want people to think.
Popping into town were Jim Franks, Clyde Kilough, Doug Horchak and Britton Taylor. For a group of high ranking ministers from a competitive splinter group to pop in at Charlotte like this is unusual, especially when they bring along their church treasurer and financial operations manager, Britton Taylor. More went on here that some chit chat over coffee in Rod Meredith's office. It is surprising that anyone actually believe this.
Jim Franks claims it was nothing but conversations around the table. They spent time talking about the evil empire of the Tkach era that drove them all out. They talked about doctrinal changes, that ripped the church apart, their common bonds in beliefs and their own churches. It was just one big love fest!
Do conversations need church treasures in attendance? Everyone knows that LCG and COGWA are both facing money issues, LCG more than COGWA though. Meredith knows that when he dies that the money will dry up. No one will support his son, Gerald Weston is too much of a dictator and will drive more away, many others cannot stand the thought of being under Richard Ames.
If LCG and COGWA actually do attempt to merge they are both going to be in for a huge shock. COGWA members refuse to join up with the heretics in Charlotte. LCG members consider the COGWAites heretics. Its one big unhappy dysfunctional family. But then, that is the current face of the entire Church of God movement. Never has there been so many unhappy disappointed people than at this point in COG history.
Storm clouds are brewing and a chill fills the air.
Vic Kubik sent out a letter the other day discussing the latest from Cincinnati.
One telling thing he pointed out is their Beyond Today flagship magazine. For some reason they have been dumping hundreds of thousands of dollars into another failure. No matter how much advertising they do, they cannot retain subscribers. They have a 72% failure rate.
One very important benchmark is the reach and circulation of Beyond Today magazine. As 72% of readers do not renew their subscription, we need to constantly seek new subscribers. This costs money. We use everything from card decks and print advertising, to online keyword marketing to tell people about the gospel message. The more people that subscribe, the more who will ask for other literature and become engaged–even to the point of becoming donors and coworkers. Then some of these will eventually come to repentance and be baptized.
A reader here mentioned something I missed. Its obvious from the above quote that the UCG is more concerned about number of subscribers first. The more subscribers you have the more money that comes in. Maybe a few will repent and be baptized, but its more important to have then numbers first.
Suely there is an editing error there. I’m sure what he intended to say was first the reader will come to repentance, be baptized, then become a donor. This unfortunate editing error will lead people to think that their primary purpose is attracting donors not in bringing the plain truth about the good news to the attention of sinners.
What does UCG really have to offer? Thousands of members and 3/4 of the ministry felt that it had nothing to offer and left a few years ago. UCG's income is not keeping pace with their expenditures and expectations. Its still trying to be the WCG from the 1980's and it cant do it. The glory days are gone in the Churches of God, never to return.
The January Beyond Today cover is prophetic, the handwriting truly is on the wall!
Theology and doctrinal study by church members is not something many did. If it wasn't printed in a booklet for them most never studied theology or doctrinal history. The Correspondence Course was the end-all when it came to established belief. Theology classes at the various campuses were never taught be well rounded theologians, but by men trained at the feet of Rod Meredith, Herman Hoeh and others. We all know now that these men were theologically bankrupt.
“Armstrongists have a ‘loose brick’ approach to theology,” Bell said. “They look at doctrine as a complete whole or as nothing at all. That’s why they refer to their system of belief as ‘The Truth.’ person any one doctrine falls then the whole system falls.”
Bell had been a member of the movement for three years when he began to question its teachings. In 1995 he founded the Owensboro church but soon began to examine central Armstrongist teachings under the microscope of Scripture and history.
For Bell, the first brick to crumble from the wall of Armstrongism was the sect’s doctrine of “Anglo-Israelism.” Influenced by a book called “Judah’s Scepter and Joseph’s Birthright” by J.H. Allen, Herbert Armstrong taught that Anglo-Saxons are direct descendants of the 10 lost tribes of Israel. Armstrongists see this teaching as the key that unlocks a true understanding of biblical prophecy.
Bell read “Judah’s Scepter” and was incredulous at his findings.
“When I got finished with it, I thought, ‘There are some interesting ideas here, but this is historical fantasy,’” he said. “... I began to research it in more depth and quickly tossed it out.”
Though spooked by this revelation, Bell nevertheless dismissed the doctrinal aberration as a peculiarity of Herbert Armstrong’s system of belief.
The next doctrine to tumble down was the Trinity -- Armstrongists are strongly anti-Trinitarian. The final Armstrongist brick that Bell dislodged was the group’s teaching on God. Armstrongists believe that man eventually accomplishes ‘god-status,’ a qualitative equality with God.
It didn’t take a seminary education for Bell to realize that was blasphemy.
“When I was first getting into the Armstrongist movement, I read a booklet that said the resurrection (of the dead at Christ’s return) would be the most momentous event in the history of the world because it would be the birth of gods,” Bell said. “When I read that, I said ... ‘that’s blasphemy.’”
Still, Bell decided to ignore the booklet because Garner Ted Armstrong had not written it. He remained in the movement.
“I chose [to believe] that everything else I was hearing was so good, I was going to shove that aside,” he said.
Under the leadership of Joseph Tkach, who succeeded Herbert Armstrong as leader of the Worldwide Church of God upon his death in 1986, the sect experienced a massive doctrinal shift in the mid-90s toward biblical orthodoxy.
The group’s website trumpets this radical transformation as a “Damascus Road experience.” The Worldwide Church of God was admitted as a member of the National Association of Evangelicals in 1997.
As an Armstrongist devotee, Bell saw the change as a great apostasy. Other true Armstrongists agreed and the Worldwide Church of God lost more than half its members and ministers because of the shift. True Armstrongists still hold fast to the teachings of Herbert Armstrong and have churches scattered about the country, Bell said.
It wasn’t until the spring of 1998, after a series of sexual misconduct allegations were lodged against Garner Ted Armstrong, that Bell’s foray into Armstrongism came to an end.
The allegations turned the Church of God International on its head and struck Bell with sledgehammer force. Due in large part to the accusations, Bell eventually resigned the pastorate and began the journey back to Christian orthodoxy.
Bell enrolled at Southern in the fall of 1998. It was a revolutionary experience and within one year, his view of theology underwent a profound metamorphosis.
That first year, Bell studied Baptist and church history, theology, and hermeneutics. Soon, he had embraced fully historic evangelical Christianity.
“By the end of my first full year at Southern Seminary, I had my theological world rocked,” he said. “I emerged from that a convinced evangelical.”
God's most awesome leader of the most superfantabulous Church of God EVVVVVVVVVER, has produced a set of video sermons lately that claim to tell who he is according to the Bible.
Dave now thinks he is "that prophet" mentioned in Acts 3:22-26. Some in the Churches of God and much of Christianity understand this verse to be referring to
The Bible foretells the arrival of Elijah and That Prophet just before Christ’s Return. Many Christians believe That Prophet is Christ. Jews believe he and Elijah are different men. Are they correct?
22 For Moses truly said to the fathers, 'The Lord your God will raise up for you a Prophet like me from your brethren. Him you shall hear in all things, whatever He says to you. 23 And it shall be that every soul who will not hear that Prophet shall be utterly destroyed from among the people. 24 Yes, and all the prophets, from Samuel and those who follow, as many as have spoken, have also foretold these days. 25 You are sons of the prophets, and of the covenant which God made with our fathers, saying to Abraham, 'And in your seed all the families of the earth shall be blessed.' 26 To you first, God, having raised up His Servant Jesus, sent Him to bless you, in turning away every one of you from your iniquities." (Acts 3:22-26)Just how many biblical mantles of leadership can Dave take on? The title of being Elijah and Joshua apparently was not been enough for him. What's left? Being
Thankfully salvation does not rest in Dave Pack's hands or Gerald Flurry's. It doesn't rest in keeping the sabbath or eating "clean" meats or being part of numerous quibbling groups ending up in Petra for "final training." Salvation does not rest in the hands of "doubly blessed" prophets, Canadian Pharisees, or in the hands of "sinless" COG leaders. Of that we can all be assured of!
From a guest contributor with ties to LCG.
A comment on UCG: Even though ship is sinking we love spending money
The basic problem with the way Armstrongism works on the human mind is that it conditions people to consider all possible outcomes to variable situations, and then to focus in on the worst or most negative scenario as being the probable outcome. Under such thought patterns, even the blessings for living a Christian lifestyle can’t be enjoyed in this lifetime as an example to others, you have to wait for the next life to enjoy them. Also, don’t even expect loving encouragement if you go in to counsel with your minister, expect a serious ration of crap, instead. And especially expect the worst if you need to interface with someone from “the world”!
When they are writing articles for their recruitment magazines, this negativity is just so ingrained, that they can’t suppress it! That is what flows outward as the takeaway. Who in their right mind would want such negativity in their homes, and in their minds? The people who don’t renew are most likely the positive thinkers who realize that mankind is capable of high level problem solving.
One of the aspects which makes churches grow today is a positive message, a message that people can influence the surrounding community or culture towards good. The example of Lot is cited, in which God promised to spare the majority for the sake of a small number of righteous, or where Israel and Judah had punishment postponed multiple times when God saw even encouraging signs of partial obedience. You just don’t walk into an ACOG sabbath service and hear a message about winning the community for Jesus Christ. Instead, the messages are about how minorities are going to start race wars for no reason, or how the homosexuals are going to convert everyone to their “lifestyle”, and then outraged and morally superior Germans are going to need to come over here and mop everything up for God. Droughts, floods, new diseases, and demon activity. They have all manner of toys or tools to use on the unsuspecting. People just do not respond positively to such negative coercion. Nobody wants to live in circumstances of entrapment. That is not what makes the human spirit thrive!