It has happened. Bob Thiel has now broken away from Spanky's so-called Living Church of God and is seeking to establish a new COG. Hat tip: Mr. Gavin Rumney.
It is hard for me to have any sympathy for Bob Thiel. Alas, I am embarrassed to say this, but he was one of the main reasons why I aligned myself with LCG, when I encountered his blog in 2000 while looking for information about the COGs.
In mid-2000 I saw a news report about a cult started up by ex-WCG members. I was greatly agitated by this and went looking around for information about the COGs, as by this time all I knew was what was presented to me in the Tomorrow's World telecast and in LCG's official website, which was not much. I then learned that there were many COGs around. With so many around which one should I choose? Alas, while looking around I found Bob Thiel's blog. He argued why all the other COGs were less acceptable than LCG. Alas, I found his arguments persuasive. I was already predisposed to LCG because they were how I first learned of Armstrongism and therefore I felt thankful to them.
His writings helped convince me to make one of the most terrible decisions of my life: to accept LCG as the true church in which God in working through. Alas, it was only in 2008 that I learned this was not the case and had to leave behind the lies of Armstrongism.
Because of his role in making me accept LCG I have no sympathy for him. His conduct in this dispute only confirms once again the complete spiritual and moral bankruptcy of Armstrongism. As far as I am concerned his conduct, spreading propaganda in favor of deceptive lies (which he may have honestly believed in) have earned him this set back. Like many Armstrongites he has refused to see the truth that HWA is a
false prophet despite knowing that he made many false prophecies
throughout his career and continues to uphold the lie that HWA was a man
sent by God. This latest split are the wages of the terrible lies, strict dogmatic views and deceptive legalism that he has long spread.
How Bob Thiel expect anyone to follow him considering that he was never ordained is beyond me. I think very few will follow him. No doubt his past LCG self would have dismissed him as merely another sower of division among 'God's people' to be safely ignored.
As for his family, his wife and children, I do feel sorry for them. As Mr. Gavin Rumney points out, no doubt this will negatively impact them through no fault of their own and that is wrong.
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