Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Reading PCG's Booklet, Jeremiah: Prophet of Doom--or Hope?

Let us now read Gerald Flurry's booklet, Jeremiah: Prophet of Doom--or Hope? This booklet was printed in 1993. Tkach's WCG was still in the process of transforming WCG into a mainly Protestant church. Meredith's GCG had only just started. It would be another two years before UCG's establishment.

However in 1999 this booklet was superseded by an expanded booklet entitled Jeremiah and the Greatest Vision in the Bible. That booklet was discussed previously on this blog: (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4 and Part 5.)

Also on this blog is a post discussing how this booklet compares with the later booklet, Jeremiah and the Greatest Vision in the Bible.

Let us begin.

Chapter 1: The Warning

Early on Flurry appeals to British Israelism. However British Israelism is false. has shown how British Israelism is built on a foundation of sand. In fact DNA evidence refutes British Israelism. But based on this false teaching Flurry insists that America is about to destroyed.

Flurry says America are headed for destruction and catastrophe on an unimaginable scale.
HWA and his various imitators, including Gerald Flurry, have constantly insisted that the end is just around the corner continuously since the 1930s.
Bank consultant Ed Furash said, "Everything is going to be up in the air until after the inauguration [of President Clinton]." Then he said, "We're going to have a lot of dead banks that need to be taken over!" The U.S. ECONOMY is in serious trouble and that means trouble for for the whole western world! (p. 3.)
This is yet another false prophecy by Gerald Flurry. Here he is, citing a consultant on the eve of President Clinton's inauguration, and whatever "serious trouble" the US economy was in then has long since passed into history. Since the US has gone through two major market contractions, namely the dot-com bust in 2000 and the subprime mortgage crisis of 2007 which escalated into the Global Financial Crisis. So Flurry citing any troubles at this time has been proven to be false.
Wickedness is found in God's very own Church today! What is it? Write for free copies of Malachi's Message and the Doctrinal Changes booklet and you will see. God is concerned about evil in all Israel, but especially in spiritual Israel or the Church. That is where the worst crimes of all are being committed. (p. 4.) 
It is strange that while making such a fuss of condemning the Tkach changes PCG no longer publishes the booklet that most specifically discusses what the Tkach changes actually were.

And how dare Gerald Flurry belittles all the terrible things happening in the world by saying that the Tkach changes are "the worst crimes of all". No doubt many suffered during the Tkach changes but to use language like that is wildly disproportionate.
Unless God's Church delivers this message in the end time, then Jeremiah lived in vain! This message that he wrote in a book is for us to deliver today.  (p. 5.)
Clearly Flurry has no lack of self esteem. If Jeremiah was so dependent upon Flurry then why listen to Jeremiah? This means that Flurry is greater then Jeremiah. We might as well just listen to Flurry.

On page 7 Flurry quotes Jeremiah to say that "The ark of the covenant of the Lord: neither shall it come to mind: neither shall they remember it; neither shall they visit it; neither shall that be done any more." Contrary to this Gerald Flurry has apparently recently speculated that it is PCG's destiny to find the Ark of the Covenant in Britain.

Flurry then continues to insist that the most dire events are about to occur. Strange he should say such things so soon after the end of the Cold War.
This is God's Work. We must do it urgently. We must blow the trumpet because NUCLEAR WAR is coming on the nations of Israel unless they repent! (p. 7.)
Flurry then appeals to the place of safety.
If you want to escape the terrible trouble ahead, find the Zion or Church that God leads. Only then will you have a place of safety from the terrifying evil to come on Israel! This is not a message to be taken lightly. (pp. 7-8.)
The idea that only joining PCG will allow one to escape the Great Tribulation is often used within PCG to keep members within it despite the many problems within it.
The sound of the trumpet, the alarm of war! (p. 8.) 
Flurry sure is trying to get people scared, isn't he? When people are scared they cannot think clearly and react without having a clear view of the situation.
Israel is filled with adultery! It is the subject of thousands of movies and television programs. (p. 9.) 
Here Flurry speaks of America, Britain and the State of Israel. In theory other peoples are also identified as descendants of the Israelites but in practice "Israel" within mainly refers to America, Britain and the State of Israel.
This is referring to the ancient and famous warring nation, now called Germany. They have risen again to become a powerful nation and they are asserting that power even now. (p. 10.) 
Flurry has inherited this idea from HWA's WCG that Germans are the descendants of the Biblical Assyrians. This is complete nonsense. The Assyrians spoke a Semitic language related to Hebrew and still exist as a distinctive ethnicity in the Middle East. The Germans speak an Indo-European language totally unrelated to Assyrian.

HWA adopted this idea from British Israelism. At first British Israelism taught that the Germans, like the British, were also descendants of Israel. But after the horrors if World War I British Israelism abandoned that idea and began to teach that the Germans were descendants of the Assyrians, fated to once again combat the British. HWA adopted this idea as his own and propagated this idea among his followers within WCG.

Herman Hoeh used to confuse the fact that the Assyrians were Semitic while the Germans are Indo-European by insisting that the Indo-European Hittites were in fact Assyrians. This is nonsense.
We must see this and accept God's truth or pay a mind-splitting penalty! (p. 10.) 
Believe what I am saying or else go to the hell of the Great Tribulation. This is simply crudely intimidating people into joining his PCG and paying three tithes and extra offerings for the rest of their lives.
SO SOMEBODY HAD TO TEACH AND WARN GOD'S CHURCH AND ISRAEL ABOUT GOD'S WAY! Who was it? It was Herbert W. Armstrong and God's Philadelphia Church today. (p. 11.) 
HWA was a false prophet who made many false predictions which prove that God was not with him.
These prophecies are being fulfilled this very moment! (p. 11.) 
They are not.
The Laodiceans are sent "STRONG DELUSION" (II Thes. 2:11). Why is it such strong delusion? Because they are zealously sacrificing and giving offerings but failing to do the work God has given them to do. They give to HURRICANE AND EARTHQUAKE VICTIMS. They give tithes and offerings. They serve in the Church. They talk about love, love, love. Then they feel as long as they have done all those deeds, God couldn't reject them. But Jeremiah tells us that God is going to REJECT them with wrath! (pp. 11-12.) 
Here Flurry condemns giving money to charities. 
Here is a great nation, north of Jerusalem. They have a HISTORY OF CRUELTY IN WARFARE. THEY SHOW NO MERCY IN WARFARE. They are men of war. A very good description of Germany!  
Did Germany have mercy in WWI and WWII? Remember the concentration camps! The world is still mesmerized by their past cruelty captured on film. Again and again we watch it on television.  
This time God's own Laodicean Church or sinning Zion is going to be in the Great Tribulation. (p. 12.)
More anti-German fear mongering. HWA first said Hitler was the dictator who would conquer America. Then once Hitler was defeated he went into denial and claimed he had gone into hiding just waiting to suddenly make himself public and reunify Europe under his rule. Even as late as 1965 Meredith was still telling lay members that Hitler was alive and in hiding. Although they stopped claiming this absurd rumor to be true they continue to this day to vilify Germany as though it was still World War II.

Chapter 2: "You Can't Leave God's Church"

Here Flurry tries to tell the reader not to stay in WCG. He condemns the widely held assertion among WCG members that it is necessary to remain in WCG to be saved. (Soon enough he tells his followers that it is necessary to remain in his PCG to be saved.)
We often see a leader hugging kids and talking endlessly of "love, love, love," and we find it so hard to envision this person as being motivated by Satan. (p. 17.)
Claiming that Tkach was motivated by Satan was simply a way for Flurry to scare WCG members into joining his own following.
If we refuse to submit to God's inspired word, then our future will be like Zedekiah's fate! (p. 18.)
More crude fear mongering. Join PCG or your worst fears will come true. This is simply an attempt at phobia induction, making people have an unreasonable fear that causes them to join the group, in this instance PCG. Phobia induction is often used by high demand groups to recruit new members.

Chapter 3: Only One Work of God

Now that Flurry has insisted that WCG members have a duty to leave WCG he then tells the reader that there can only be one true church and that one must join this one true church or else one is not a real Christiam. Of course Flurry says the one true church is his own, PCG.
Today, some people get upset with us when we preach the truth. That doesn't shock us. It would shock us if some people didn't get upset! (p. 22.) 
People disagreeing or even getting angry at an argument proves nothing in and of itself.
If people persecute us, they are fighting against God. Every human being on planet earth must come to know that GOD IS BEHIND OUR MESSAGE! (p. 23.)
 Well clearly Flurry has no self esteem issues. All of humanity is to learn that PCG is the one true church.
We sometimes get accused of having the wrong approach in our message. Of course, that's what they told Jeremiah and all of God's messengers! Did that stop God's leaders? Of course not! We expect some criticism. BUT WE DEEPLY UNDERSTAND THAT THIS IS GOD'S MESSAGE AND IT MUST BE PROCLAIMED! GOD COMMANDS US TO DO SO! (p. 23.)
That is not even an argument.

This next section deserves quoting at length because it shows how Flurry redefines "faith in God" as joining PCG and paying the three tithes to PCG ("supporting His work").
There will be Urijahs who will rise up today also! Urijah prophesied in God's name and against Jerusalem and Judah. But there is no indication he was working with Jeremiah. He probably wanted his own following instead of supporting God's Work through Jeremiah. That really means he lacked FAITH in what God was doing through Jeremiah. Some leaders who leave the WCG today proclaim many of Herbert Armstrong's teachings, but reject the Philadelphia Church which God raised up to succeed him! What will happen to them? They don't have God behind them so they will panic when real persecution comes. Like Urijah, they don't stay with God and Jeremiah, but run--and it may get them killed!
They lack faith in the living God BECAUSE THEY ARE NOT SUPPORTING HIS WORK. God said He would raise up a Work in our day, which many wouldn't believe even when told (Hab. 1:5). If we can't recognize where God's Work is, THEN SOMETHING IS TRAGICALLY LACKING IN OUR SPIRITUAL LIVES!   
It's not enough to be preaching God's Word and prophecies. All of us must find Christ's true work--there is only ONE--and then back and support that endeavor. ONLY THEN WILL YOU HAVE THE FAITH AND POWER TO STAND AND FIGHT FOR GOD! God will support you only AS YOU SUPPORT HIM AND HIS WORK! (pp. 24-25.)

Chapter 4: Laodicean Ministers

After "proving" that one must join PCG Flurry then proceeds to denounce the ministers of Tkach's WCG and exploit the then ongoing Tkach changes to claim that one must join PCG to remain faithful to HWA's teachings.
It's so easy to twist what God has taught us and still act so righteous. But God calls rebels what they are. They can use all the scholarly deceit they want, but it's still rebellion! (p. 26.)
But what if you are wrong?
Do you and I know deeply that we can't direct our own steps? God says if you really know this, you will continuously ask God to correct you! Do you frequently ask God for correction because you know that no man can direct his own steps?

You can't even direct one of your steps. Jeremiah learned this lesson deeply. ... We must humbly seek God's correction to be used. This prayerful ATTITUDE  is so RARE today. This is the ONLY attitude God can use! Because religions of this lack this attitude, they are in a wilderness of religious confusion. (pp. 28-29.)
Here Flurry insists that one cannot do the right thing unless he or she joins PCG and does what he or she is told to do by PCG's leaders.
God's Laodicean flock today is driven away from God by over 35 major doctrinal changes since Mr. Armstrong died! (p. 30.)
Many doctrines were being changed within Tkach's WCG by this time. Many WCG members who had joined because they yearned to follow HWA's teachings were not happy about this and left to join splinter groups that left WCG in order to follow HWA's teachings as they understood it. Many more abandoned Armstrongism and moved on from it.
God is going to set up shepherds over them who will "feed" them His truth. They will teach them what Mr. Armstrong and the PCG taught! God is talking about us as His future shepherds! (p. 30.)
This refers to HWA's teaching that members are destined to be born into the God family and become a God being as fully God as God is God, though of lower rank. This God family dogma is untrue.
Why did Jeremiah express such horror? BECAUSE GOD'S OWN PROPHETS ARE NOT WARNING ISRAEL OF THIS TERRIBLE CAPTIVITY! All of Jeremiah's bones shook because of all the false prophets! He understood that they would refuse to warn God's own people in this end time. When Jeremiah read God's holy prophecies it made him feel like a drunken man. (p. 31.)
At the time this booklet was published in 1993 many WCG members who continued to believe HWA's teachings were distressed because Tkach's WCG had a lesser emphasis on prophecy. They thought they could sense World War III coming very soon. It is now twenty-two years since this booklet was published. Did PCG's members anticipate that they would still be waiting for the second coming when they first read this booklet?
Tactical nuclear weapons have been stolen form the Soviet arsenal and sold to nations in the Middle East. Soon Germany and Japan will also have nuclear weapons. (p. 31.)
This is total nonsense. Where did Flurry get this idea from? Twenty-two years later the State of Israel is still the only nation in the Middle East with nuclear weapons and Germany and Japan still have no nuclear weapons of their own. This is yet another false prophecy by Gerald Flurry.
Mr. Tkach has asked WCG members to pray for peace in the Middle East. But God has prophesied that the Middle East is going to be a cauldron of violence and have no peace until Christ returns! (p. 33.)
How pessimistic this is. This attitude is useless.
Why do WCG ministers usually tell their members not to read our material. The people are told to throw it away or give it to the minister unopened. THIS IS THE FIRST TIME IN HISTORY THEY HAVE GIVEN SUCH A WARNING! Why? Because the truth we have is a fire that burns their spiritual chaff or worthless spiritual food. God's powerful truth is a hammer that breaks their false religious ideas to pieces! That is why the WCG ministers fear our message! That is why they strongly urge their members not to read it! (p. 35.)
In practice WCG members were widely discouraged from reading critical writings by peer pressure and admonitions by their leaders not to leave WCG. WCG members were told that if one left they could not be in the place of safety. So this kind of information control was widely used within HWA's WCG despite what Flurry here insinuates.
Everlasting reproach and perpetual shame that will never be forgotten is going to come upon them. Even the Laodiceans who repent in the Tribulation will have a certain eternal shame because they lost such a large share of their magnificent reward. (p. 37.)
And so Flurry insists that once the Great Tribulation begins those Laodiceans who had not joined PCG by then will forever bear shame that they failed to be in PCG at that time when they flee to the place of safety. This is just a fear inducing teaching designed to compel PCG members to stay despite the many problems within it.

Chapter 5: A Glorious End

The last few pages contain esoteric descriptions of Israel glorified by the returning Christ to lead humanity in the Millenium.
You and I must make GOD'S WILL a part of our individual lives. YOU CAN MAKE GOD'S WILL YOUR WILL. THERE IS NO GREATER MIRACLE THAN THAT! Knowing God's will helps us to understand who are true and who are false prophets. (p. 39.)
What this really means is that Flurry wants the reader to view what PCG's leaders say as though it were the word of (PCG's) God and do what PCG's leaders say. This includes paying three tithes to PCG for the benefit of PCG's leaders.
This verse tells us we are getting very close to the Second Coming of Jesus Christ! There are still more thrills and excitement to come. ... David is about to be resurrected to rule Israel--under Jesus Christ. (p. 41.)
It is now twenty-two years (8030 days) since this booklet was printed. Were PCG "very close" to Christ's coming all that time?
In "the latter days" we'll understand it. This is a promise from God! Do you understand it? IF YOU FIND A CHURCH THAT TRULY UNDERSTANDS THE BOOK OF JEREMIAH IN THIS END TIME, THEN YOU HAVE FOUND GOD'S TRUE CHURCH! (p. 41.)
Many of PCG's teachings are factually incorrect, including the dogma of British Israelism. PCG has made many inaccurate predictions about world events thus proving they are false prophets. There is no need to fear that what they say might come to pass. God is not with PCG.

Afterwards Flurry advertises an article on this topic.
(For more information on this subject, write for our free article on "Germany in Prophecy.")
I suspect that article was the basis for Gerald Flurry's booklet, Nahum: An End-Time Prophecy for Germany.

After this Flurry speaks rapturously that America will be saved after the second coming. Here Flurry promises PCG members of the great glory and power that awaits them after the second coming if they join PCG.
The watchmen [glorified PCG members after the second coming] are going to see Israel coming back from captivity. They will signal each group to join the procession--saying "let us go up to Zion unto the Lord our God!" Oh, if only we could see now what God has in store for us! The Church leads Israel to God. Then ISRAEL LEADS THE WHOLE WORLD TO GOD! At last, the world has peace. (p. 42.)
Some wonder why so many PCG members remain there despite the many problems there. This is part of the reason why they stay. They think this great future awaits them if they only stay within PCG. They are told they will lose this future power if they leave PCG.

Flurry ends this booklet with these words.
Even Jeremiah’s temporary “doom” contains great hope. He was not a prophet of doom. He was a prophet of incredible hope. If only the world could understand his wonderful message now, so much suffering could be prevented. Jeremiah talked about bad news only because of this world’s rebellion against God. But his overall message was filled with hope! (p. 45.) 
But one can only gain this hope by joining PCG and paying the three tithes.

At the end of the booklet is advertizing for PCG's booklet, Worldwide Church of God Doctrinal Changes and the Tragic Results. This booklet was the most explicit and detailed description and criticism of the Tkach changes published by PCG. But today it is out of print and it is not available on the Internet. It is strange to think that a group that so often boasts of opposing the Tkach changes has not bothered to continue using the most detailed condemnation of the Tkach changes they have produced. Maybe they were worried that PCG members would start wondering why PCG's leaders have made so many changes to HWA's teachings while euphemistically describing these changes as "new revelation". 

This is also advertizing for PCG's Philadelphia Trumpet magazine. Although at times they may deny it it's purpose is to It shows pictures of some of the early magazine issues.

The May 1992 issue is shown but its picture is obscured.

One issue has a picture of the LA riots of 1992. Thanks to The Ezekiel Watchman booklet I know that is the June 1992 issue.

Another issue has a photo of a Nazi parade from the time of Nazi Germany. Thanks to The Ezekiel Watchman booklet I know that is the July 1992 issue. Also because its photo is very similar to the original cover of Gerald Flurry's booklet, Nahum: An End-Time Prophecy for Germany, it is very likely that the article cited in that issue, 'Germany in Prophecy', served as the basis for that booklet.

The August 1992 issue is shown with the headline: "God's End-Time Church: "Bowed the Knee to Baal"". Clearly the main article was yet another denunciation of the Tkach changes.

The November 1992 issue features a picture of a Protestant church.

The January 1993 issue shows a portrait of HWA.

One issue shows the cover that is used for the cover of Gerald Flurry's 1992 booklet, The Ezekiel Watchman. It is not possible to determine the date of that issue from the picture.

And there are addresses for (1) "United States and Canada", (2) "New Zealand and the Pacific Isles", (3) "Australia" and (4) "United Kingdom and rest of Europe".

And so this booklet comes to an end. Yet again we see Gerald Flurry trying to scare people into despair and thinking that only by joining PCG can they have any hope of overcoming the many problems of the world. His hysterical warnings are now badly outdated and rendered meaningless and obsolete. No wonder PCG changed and made a new booklet in 1999.

1 comment:

  1. So... is there a booklet about Hosea protesting the "drunkards of Ephraim"?

    Seeing how Jeremiah was concerned about the Israel of his time and not the Anglo-Saxons of ours, the booklet seems useless.