Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Reading PCG's Booklet, The King of the South

Let us now look through Gerald Flurry's booklet, The King of the South. Here Flurry teaches that the King of the South will be Iran. According to him Iran will arise and collaborate in destroying the State of Israel. But soon afterwards it shall also be destroyed by the European Beast Power shortly before the return of Christ. This booklet was originally published in 1996. It has since been revised in 2001, 2003, 2007, 2008 and 2011. You can read the current 2011 version of this booklet on their website. However for this post I am looking through the 2003 version.

The cover seems quite similar to the original cover for Hosea and God's Adulterous Wife.

Chapter 1
Daniel 11:40 tells us the king of the south will “push” at the king of the north. When does this push occur? It must happen after the book of Daniel was revealed in this end time. Daniel 12:9 tells us the time of the end BEGAN WHEN DANIEL WAS REVEALED. So the king of the south must arise after Daniel was revealed to God’s end-time Church—to Herbert W. Armstrong. However, many of the specifics of Daniel’s book have been revealed to the Philadelphia Church of God today. (p. 2.)
As is typical of Flurry he claims to bear "new revelation" that was not revealed to HWA.
Today I believe that much of the king of the south’s land area will be south of Jerusalem, but not all. For example, Sudan is already in the radical Islamic camp. Algeria may be there very soon. But all of the king of the south’s land area is south of the end-time king of the north. (p. 3.)
Here Flurry is changing a doctrine of HWA. HWA always taught that the King of the South would be south of Jerusalem. In the Bible "south" means south of Jerusalem. But here Flurry has changed south to mean south of the King of the North. That is not what HWA taught.
The king of the north is comprised of several nations, led by one nation, Germany. It makes sense that the king of the south would have a similar composition. All indications point to Iran as the nation that produces the king of the south. Since the early 1990s, we have believed and taught that Iran would lead the radical Islamist world and be the king of the south. Today Iran is “king” in the Middle East. (p. 5.)
This is nonsense. In fact most Arab nations hate Iran, largely because they are Shiite while most Arab states are run by Sunnis. Traditionally there have often been intense rivalries between the Arab and Iran. This statement just confirms that Flurry does not have a clue what is really happening in the Middle East.

Actually the COGs have had a long and tortured history regarding this doctrine of the King of the South.

In the days before World War II and during it HWA taught that Halie Selassie was the King of the South. HWA claimed Daniel 11:40 was fulfilled when Mussolini led the conquest of Abyssinia in 1936-7. HWA claimed that the ancient Egypt discussed in Daniel 11 ruled Ethiopia for a time so the Ethiopian Emperor was the end time heir of Hellenistic Egypt. However linked to this teaching was his insistence that Mussolini was the beast who would unify Europe to conquer America and lead these forces to battle Christ in the Holy Land.

After World War II when HWA's prophecy that Mussolini (and then Hitler) was the beast failed spectacularly HWA still taught that Daniel 11:40 was fulfilled in 1936-7. However as early as the 1960s some in WCG, such as Garner Ted Armstrong, speculated that there would be a future King of the South arising among the Arabs. Then in the December 1980 issue of the Plain Truth, possibly influenced by the turmoil of the Iranian revolution at the time, Keith Stump wrote an article entitled Seeing the World Through Islamic Eyes, which taught there would be some sort of "Arab-Moslem confederation" that would be the King of the South.
What, then, does the Bible say of the future of Islam?

The New Testament of the Bible was completed more than 500 years before the birth of Mohammed. Yet the Bible does not ignore the future of Islam!

Bible prophecy reveals the coming emergence of an Arab-Moslem confederation in the Middle East. It is referred to in prophecy as "the king of the south" (Dan. 11:40). This confederation will play a crucial role in end-time events.

At the prophesied return of Jesus to this earth at that critical juncture in history to save mankind from self-destruction (see Matt. 24:22) and usher in a millennial rule of peace and prosperity, God's government will be established over the entire earth. All nations will submit to him. Church and State will be united under his rule. There will be one Church—one God—one religion-- ONE SUPREME GOVERNMENT! (Rev. 19:16.) (Keith Stump, 'Seeing the World Through Islamic Eyes', Plain Truth, December 1980, p. 26.)
No attempt was ever made to link this personage with Halie Selassie, as far as I know.

As far as I can tell this idea did not gain mainstream acceptance among the COGs until after HWA's death. Flurry saw this idea that was in the air at the time and gave it specificity by claiming Iran would fulfill this role. Flurry from early on taught that the King of the South would be Iran. (At least that is what he says here.) He had to change the previous dogma to do so but PCG members meekly followed this doctrinal change.

Meredith also adopted this dogma claiming there would be an end time King of the South, even insinuating he would claim to be the Mahdi. Flurry however never mentions anything about the King of the South being a self proclaimed Mahdi.

More on this topic can be read at a previous post.

We now continue with Flurry's booklet.
The Iraq campaign is the latest round in America’s global war on terrorism. But where did all of this world terrorism begin? Iraq is a dangerous part of the equation, but it is not the head of the terrorist snake.

We must go back in history to see terrorism’s roots. It’s not enough to destroy the branches. We must pull the terrorist tree up by the roots. It’s the only way to win this war. (p. 6.)
So Flurry says Iran is the real problem and if the USA wants to defeat terrorism then they should take on Iran.
Back in 1994, then-Secretary of State Warren Christopher called Iran “the world’s most significant state sponsor of terrorism.” How pathetic to make such a statement and do nothing about it! (p. 6)
Here Flurry accuses the American government of causing the Shah's fall by nit-picking at his flaws thus letting Islamic Fundamentalists seize power.
In 1981, Mike Wallace of the television program 60 Minutes interviewed Ayatollah Khomeini (who had come to power only two years before). He told the ayatollah that Sadat had called him a “lunatic.”

Almost immediately afterward, within just days, President Sadat was assassinated!

That is the kind of power the leader of radical Islam has! (p. 7.)
Correlation does not mean causation. And besides from what I understand it was Egyptian Islamic Fundamentalists who murdered President Sadat, largely because they were furious that he had made peace with the State of Israel. I had never heard that Iran was involved in that.
When the Sadat assassination occurred, Mr. Armstrong said it was a turning point in Middle East history! And that was almost an understatement. But virtually nobody in the media saw—or they refused to see—what A WORLD-CHANGING EVENT that was! (p. 7.)
HWA very often liked to speak melodramatically like that. Flurry tends to do that as well.
Middle East peace treaties dominate the news—as all kinds of peace treaties did just before World War II began! It is just another major sign that WAR IS ABOUT TO EXPLODE IN THE MIDDLE EAST! And it will lead to World War III. (p. 14.)
So talk of peace treaties is a sign that World War III is just around the corner, so says Flurry.
For example, our refusal to use our military might is often not righteousness, as we like to believe, but despicable weakness resulting from our sins. We simply lack the faith, character and courage to fight against Iran, the number-one terrorist nation today. Unless we change our ways, we will prove too weak to survive! (p. 15.)
So if anyone thinks going to war with Iran is a bad idea then you are not a man.

Pages 16-18 has an inset essentially accusing Iran of assassinating Ayatollah Mohammed Baqir al-
Hakim on August 29, 2003 with a car bomb that also killed about 90 people. As far as I know no one really seems to know who did that foul assassination. This has since been removed in the current 2011 version of this booklet.
OUR ULTIMATE SUCCESS WILL BE DETERMINED BY OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD. If God is for us, we can’t lose. But if God is against us, we can’t win. And Bible prophecy relates that God is against us and is cursing us. We should repent and become a true superpower! (p. 20.)
Of course elsewhere Flurry teaches that the Americans and British will not repent as a nation but individuals may repent and escape to the place of safety and avoid the Great Tribulation, namely join PCG and pay Flurry and Co. three tithes and extra offerings.
After having toppled Saddam Hussein, America and Britain have a marvelous opportunity to pressure Iran. We have a huge country from which to operate, and it adjoins Iran. It would stand no chance against our massive power. Then we would have heavy influence over a large portion of the world’s oil. (p. 20.)
So is this all about the oil, Flurry?
The most powerful Islamic country in the Middle East is Iran. Can you imagine the power they would have if they gained control of Iraq, which was at one time the third-leading exporter of oil in the world? I predicted as far back as 1992 that this could happen.

Here is what I wrote in December of 1994: “Such a takeover [of Iraq] by Iran would SHOCK the world—especially Europe. It would be a strong impetus for Europe to unite quickly. Such a move would, in all likelihood, give Iran power to cause a sizable increase in the price of oil. [In reality, they would then control virtually all of the Middle East oil.] This could help trigger a collapse of the Western world’s weak currencies. This in turn could cause Europe to quickly unite into the most powerful economic bloc in the world. That very event is prophesied to occur in your own Bible!” (“Is Iraq About to Fall to Iran?”, Philadelphia Trumpet).

You should read that paragraph again! (p. 21.)
If you can read it once you do not need to read it again. Flurry is just trying to hog all your attention upon what he is saying.

Then Flurry claims that America's military victories are helping to set both the King of the North and the King of the South to cement their regional power.
Saddam Hussein was the only leader that Iran feared. Now the U.S. has taken him out of the way. But does America have the will or strength to guard the spoils of war? Prophecy states that it does not.

Has the U.S. now cleared the way for Shiite Iran to rule over Shiite Iraq?

It was the U.S. that overpowered Serbian leader Slobodan Milosevic in 1999’s Kosovo war. He was the only leader in Europe that Germany feared.

After this Flurry fear mongers that the Iraqi Shiites are well organized and threatening to seize control of Iraq. He implies that they will do so at Iran's behest. 

Well, of course they organize themselves. They are their own people and they are not mindlessly waiting for some white Americans to tell them what to do. They organize themselves out of their self interest just like anyone else. Also back in 1991 Saddam Hussein suppressed a revolt among the Shiites with much loss of life. No doubt many Shiites saw that it was impossible to trust the Baathist regime.
Remember, it was just in the 2002 State of the Union address that President Bush labeled Iran number two in the “axis of evil.” Right after Baghdad fell, threatening hints were dropped that Iran had better watch its step. Now—although the U.S. is being discreet about it—Iran is being looked to as an ALLY to motivate the Iraqi Shiites into establishing order within the area of conquest! (p. 23.)
Iran was never an ally of the US and the US never tried to do so. Instead what happened is that many Iraqi Shiites chose to cooperate with the Americans and their allies. Some nevertheless chose to wage war upon Coalition forces.

On page 24 Flurry quotes a Stratfor report saying that Iraq could become theocratic like Iran.
“A democratically elected constitutional assembly means a Shiite-dominated assembly. ... The net result will be a constitution written by Shiites. This raises an interesting question of what kind of constitution will be written. It will undoubtedly be democratic—but democratic on the order of the Iranian model” (Sept. 15, 2003). (p. 24.)
In fact it did not become a mullah led theocracy. Stratfor was wrong. And Flurry was inaccurate with this opinion.
In a September 2003 interview with the IRNA news agency, Iran’s last president, Hashemi Rafsanjani, gave a chilling version of these events. “Even though the United States has a physical presence in the countries that surround us, THE REALITY IS THAT THE UNITED STATES IS IN FACT SURROUNDED BY IRAN,” he said. Is this just bluster? Look at the situation honestly, and you can see that it is true! Iran has indeed “surrounded” America, because it is the KING of terrorist-sponsoring nations! (p. 24.)
That sounds like bluster to me.

After that Flurry then relates the COG dogma inherited from HWA's WCG that the King of the South shall push at the King of the North (a future, German led European Beast Power) and Europe will crush the King of the South. However it must be said that to say the King of the South will be Iran is a distinctly Flurrian twist to this teaching. The other COGs tend to believe the King of the South will arise among the Arabs, not Iran.

And the reason there is so much arguing over the future of Jerusalem is because of Satan. The Israelis and the Palestinians are just reacting to Satan's bad moods, according to Flurry. 
Jesus Christ will be here in the very near future. And He will bring peace to the entire world! That is one big reason there is so much violence over Jerusalem in this end time. Satan knows that God is going to rule the world, and even the universe, from Jerusalem. (p. 26.)
Interlude: A Mysterious Alliance

On pages 27-29 there is an insert article claiming the Middle East will be divided in two in the end time. Some nations will be allied with Iran, the supposed King of the South. But other Arab nations will not be allied with Iran and so escape the severe attack upon Iran by the European Beast Power. But after Iran's fall these Arab nations will ally with the European Beast Power and destroy America, Britain and the State of Israel.

An old article by Herman Hoeh (who is not mentioned by name) is quoted to support the assertion that Turkey is Edom today. This is nonsense. The Turks speak a Turkic language totally unrelated to Hebrew or Arabic. Other Turkic languages include Azerbaijani, Uzbek, Kazakh, Uyghur, Turkmen, Tatar and Kyrgyz. Are they all Edomites? If the Turks are really related to Israel as common descendents of Isaac why do they speak a completely unrelated language?

Also Hoeh's article a condemns interracial marriage.

In the current 2011 version this insert has been expanded into a separate chapter.

Chapter 2

(In the current 2011 version this is now Chapter 3.)

In this chapter Flurry accuses the Roman Catholic Church of planning to create the European Beast Power to seize control of Jerusalem for herself. He cites the painful history of the Crusades as evidence of what the Papacy has done through history. Flurry claims the Crusades are merely faint foreshadows of what the Papacy will do in the end time while allied with the future European Beast Power.
History proves the Catholic Church to be one of the most militant institutions ever created. It does not believe in a democratic philosophy. (p. 31.)
PCG does not believe in a democratic philosophy either. In fact they advocate one-man rule under Gerald Flurry. How hypocritical and deceptive of Flurry.
Jerusalem is considered a holy place by both religions. It is indeed considered the “center of the universe” to the Catholics. They believe conquering Jerusalem makes them righteous. That has been their ideology from the beginning. It is still true today. ... They believe in war as an instrument to achieve their religious goals.(p. 33.)
What Catholic today believes this? This is fanciful nonsense used to inaccurately demonize Catholics and the Papacy.
Those memories have provoked Arabs and Jews to massacre Catholics throughout history in a similar manner—all in the name of religion. (p. 34.)
Jews massacring Catholics? Where? When? What on Earth is Flurry talking about?
Why would Europe risk such serious problems, even warfare, over this tiny island?

Even the people building the EU don’t fully understand what is happening. There is a spirit and force behind these events that the world does not see. (p. 36.)
Here Flurry insinuates that the EU leaders are already under the influence of Satan in choosing to accept Cyprus as a member of the EU while being more reluctant about Turkey.
We must understand the Holy Roman Empire and the Crusades to understand the Catholic passion for Jerusalem. They have a long history of spilling rivers of blood over Jerusalem. (p. 39.)
What Catholic wants to do that today? This is just a sickening, fact free delusion.
There has never before been trouble like this. God promises to protect His people physically. Otherwise, they would perish in a nuclear nightmare. (p. 41.)
Here "His people" mean PCG members. One reason that many ex-WCG members were attracted to Flurry's group is that he promises that PCG members will go to the place of safety but all WCG members and members of any other COG group will be cast into the Great Tribulation.

That chapter, filled with fact free anti-Catholic hysterics, was very hard to read. It is removed from any semblance of reality. He simply uses the doom and gloom writings of HWA and presents them yet again to readers to create a false sense of crisis in the minds of his readers. But what he writes in this chapter is nonsense. This is not to belittle what happened during the crusades but no one in the Papacy is planning to do this? It is just manipulative demagoguery to get peoples' tithes. 

Chapter 3

(In the current 2011 version this is now Chapter 4.)

In this chapter Gerald Flurry discusses the supposed role of PCG members within end time events.He speaks very highly of the activities of PCG in this chapter.
Now notice how deeply God’s very elect are embedded and emphasized within the 11th and 12th chapters of Daniel. ... The word exploits means heroic acts. The very elect “stand firm and take action” (Revised Standard Version). (p. 42.)
What sort of "heroic acts" is he talking about?
Our six-year court battle is an example. The PCG won that battle, when it looked like we had no chance of winning. God gave us the victory. Now the copyrights to Mr. Armstrong’s writings belong to us. If you are unfamiliar with this story, we will be happy to send you information on it. (p. 42.)
PCG did not win that court case. Why does Flurry say untrue things?
Here we see a small group of people with a God-sized message. The whole world should heed today. But most people won’t become converted until Christ returns—which is probably within 10 to 15 years or less. (p. 43.)
This is from the 2003 version. Looking at events from 2003 this would means that Flurry is saying that Christ will return "probably within" 2013 to 2018 "or less."

This prophecy has failed.

This exact same passage is still present in the current 2011 version on page 47. The words have not been changed. If we date it from 2011 then this means Flurry seems to teach that Christ will return "probably within" 2021 to 2026 "or less."

So we see that Gerald Flurry has indeed been setting dates to frighten PCG members to remain under his one man rule.

We now continue.

Apparently even if you become a PCG member, or even a PCG minister, it is fated that you may still "fall away" from "the truth."
Verse 33 says many will fall. That refers to the Laodiceans. Here it says some. So EVEN SOME OF THOSE WHO UNDERSTAND AND ARE DOING GOD’S WORK WILL FALL. God is talking to the end-time Philadelphians directly!

Daniel said this was for a “time appointed.” It’s for a specific time period—our time. And right up to the very end, some of us will fall. Haven’t we all seen that happen? The word try in verse 35 means to smelt, like smelting metal. It means a fiery trial. Even when people come into this remnant and understand, they can still fall.

Should we be shocked if some few leave? God says it will happen right up to the end. We are in a war. And in a war, there are casualties. Will you be a casualty? It will happen “even to the time of the end.”

This is dangerous knowledge. Eternal life is at stake for God’s people. In the midst of world calamities, God reveals that this small, loyal remnant will have spiritual war casualties. (p. 44.)
What a way to preemptively justify disfellowshipping and marking any disaffected PCG member or even minister.

As is Flurry's way he insists that some other part of the Bible, this time Daniel 11-12, is really all about the Tkach changes, the rise of PCG in opposition to that, PCG members going to the place of safety and all others being left behind in the Great Tribulation. He has been saying this ever since he published Malachi's Message in 1990.
“In his estate” means he’s sitting in the seat of the God of gods. This is a parallel prophecy to II Thessalonians 2:4. He’s in God’s seat saying that he is God—not by his words, but by his deeds! For the word estate, the margin says stead. (Gesenius’ Lexicon says “in his place.”) He’s in the place of Christ. This is happening in God’s sanctuary. This man betrayed God.

The “god of forces” is a demon army. Satan and his fallen angels have been cast down to this Earth (Rev. 12:9, 12), and they are more wrathful than ever before. That is because they know their time is short. God is about to cast them into outer darkness.

This demon army fights God’s Church—spiritual Israel—most of all. (p. 45.)
Also it must be stated that much of Gerald Flurry wrote in Malachi's Message was plagiarized from the writings of Jules Dervaes, specifically The Letter to Laodicea. In fact on September 26, 1990 Jules Dervaes sent a letter to Gerald Flurry in which he denounces Malachi's Message as "a direct and clear plagiarism" of his work. So first Flurry takes Dervaes' ideas and use it in a booklet, then he repeats it to his indoctrinated followers again and again and again in booklet after booklet.
They finally learn that there was a prophet of God in their midst after the Tribulation has struck. Not several prophets—only one!

There is only one safe way. We must get God’s perspective—see through His eyes. (p. 45.)
As noted elsewhere Flurry teaches that God only works through one man at a time. Naturally Flurry says he is that man. Flurry states this in the booklets that uses Isaiah, Joel, the booklet entitled From the Beginning and very likely others I am not aware of.
Only the loyal “sons” are protected. The Laodicean rebels failed to honor their Father (Mal. 1:6). They are not protected. (p. 46.)
This is one of Flurry's promises to PCG members that he repeats again and again: that PCG members will go to the place of safety and be protected from the Great Tribulation. All others will be left behind. This is one reason so many PCG members are willing to remain in PCG despite the many problems this presents to them.

Flurry ends this booklet with these words.
God protects those saints who “turn many to righteousness” (Dan. 12:3). This is in the context of the king of the south. Getting out this message is why we understand God’s revealed truth. Our work is to give people a chance to turn to God. Those who do not turn will be a witness to God’s message. The coming Tribulation and Day of the Lord suffering will finally awaken them. They will know how to repent because of our message. God rewards us as no other saints. We are to shine like the stars and the brightness of the firmament forever! We are to be the only bride of Christ. (p. 47.)

And so Flurry's booklet ends.

In this booklet Flurry says Christ will probably return within 10 or 15 years or less.

Flurry says Iran is the King of the South.

And Flurry says modern day Catholics are just like the medieval Crusaders. What delusional madness that is.


  1. Most Biblical Scholars note that the prophecies of Daniel 11 have already been fulfilled and that the "time of the end" is referring to the whole debacle of Antiochus Epiphanes, or more accurately, as the Barnes commentary says:

    With this view, the phrase “and at the time of the end” Dan_11:40 would refer, not so much to the “time of the end” of the reign of Antiochus, but to the “time of the end” of the whole series of the transactions referred to by the angel as recorded “in the scripture of truth” Dan_10:21, from the time of Darius the Mede Dan_11:1 to the close of the reign of Antiochus - a series of events embracing a period of some three hundred and fifty years. Viewed in reference to this long period, the whole reign of Antiochus, which was only eleven years, might be regarded as “the time of the end.”

    Or maybe you'll like the Clarke commentary better:

    These kings are to be understood in reference to the times of which the prophet speaks. While the kingdoms of Egypt and Syria were subsisting, the king of the south and the north applied to them exclusively: but they did not exist at the time of which the prophet speaks; therefore other southern and northern powers must be sought. These we may find in the Saracens, who were of the Arabians, who came from the south, headed by the false prophet Mohammed, who pushed at him - made war on the Greek emperor Heraclius, and with amazing rapidity deprived him of Egypt, Syria, and many of his finest provinces.

    Or maybe the Henry commentary is to your liking:

    Daniel 11:21-45

    All this is a prophecy of the reign of Antiochus Epiphanes, the little horn spoken of before (Dan_8:9) a sworn enemy to the Jewish religion, and a bitter persecutor of those that adhered to it.

    Or maybe you could look up what Sir Isaac Newton said on the topic.

    It's done. It's over with.

    Flurry is over 2,000 years too late.

    He's just another kook like Herbert Armstrong was.

  2. Perhaps you haven't noticed that Gerald is certifiably feral. Gerald Flurry's destructive influences are limited in scope, and depth as intelligence is not one of his major strengths. The man is lexiphanicism in nature. Just like his god, HWA.

    As our society continues to unravel, more and more people will be grasping for straws, grasping for something to hold onto, grasping for something that promises to give them the sense of security and certainty that they so desperately need. These are the sorts of people Gerald preys upon.

    His messages is not “strength through adversity” but rather, “entitlement through victimization”. He has been teaching the next generation how to hate—and whom to hate.

    We all know how the ACOG's can influenced people in such a way as to start wars. Remember Denis Rohan and the Al-Asqa Mosque Fire? From "Banned by HWA" we read: "On August 21, 1969, Rohan attempted to set fire to the Al-Aqsa mosque, on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. The fire caused extensive damage, gutting the southeastern wing of the mosque. It destroyed a 1,000 year old wood and ivory minbar or pulpit, a gift of Saladin. Rohan was arrested for the arson attack on August 23, 1969. - See more at:"

    In conclusion, Gerald's fibs are like the Hydra from Greek mythology. They continually acquire new heads and new strength. The only way to stunt their growth is to question authority. The only way to destroy Gerald's Hydra entirely is to provide more people with the knowledge that they are looked upon as an inferior group of people, fit only to be enslaved, beaten, and butchered at the whim of our betters. His cultists and others capable of little more than rote psittacism exhibit that reflectional behavior.

    In contrast, I'm here to give an alternate solution, a better one. I don't just ask rhetorical questions; I have answers. That's why I'm telling you that Gerald doesn't want you to think outside his cultist box. He wants to enslave you for his own benefit.

    Some people may squirm a bit when they they read things like that, but such statements are the key to explaining why it is not uncommon for the PCG to victimize the innocent, penalize the victim for making any effort to defend himself, and then paint the whole audacious affair as some great struggle against the forces of Satan.