Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Reading PCG's Booklet, Daniel Unlocks Revelation: Part 1

Banned by HWA has revealed a letter Gerald Flurry published on February 3, 2017 demanding his followers send in money to fund the purchase of a privately owned airplane. In the letter it is estimated that it will cost about $9-11 million to purchase the plane and cost an additional $2 million per year to maintain it. In 2012 PCG's yearly income was about $19.5 million so this is a huge expense that he is placing upon tithing PCG lay members.

The road to this degraded spectacle of excess was paved with the various booklets that PCG's leadership has produced over the years. One such booklet was Gerald Flurry's 2005 booklet, Daniel Unlocks Revelation. Here Flurry asserts that PCG's doctrines are divinely revealed to the leaders and are not reached by simply properly understanding the Bible; denounce Tkach as a modern day Antiochus; insists that his PCG is the voice of (PCG's) God; complains that some people do not loath Germans as much as he does; alleges that a 1984 booklet was published without HWA's knowledge and makes other statements. You can read this booklet on their website.

This post discusses the original 2005 printing of this booklet.

Let us see what he has to say.


Chapter 1
And astoundingly, we understand most of this book today—more than the Church ever has! (p. 4.)
But if PCG understands Revelation more than anyone else among all who are called Christians then why give any respect to them? If this is true it means PCG is greater than the Apostles.
Christ also wants to make sure of that—in fact, He spent His whole ministry trying to get us to honor the Father. He came to this Earth to declare the Father (John 1:18). Nobody on Earth understands that except the very elect! (p. 4.)
Here "the very elect" is a loaded term meaning "those in PCG". Once again Flurry claims that his PCG are the only ones on all the Earth that properly understands this. But in fact most of the other COG groups also place great emphasis on worshiping God the Father. They also have a Father focus just like PCG. Why does Flurry say untrue things?
If we don’t approach this with the right honor for God the Father, we will never understand what He’s doing! We’ll get lost like the Laodiceans, who have completely lost the God Family understanding. (p. 5.)
While those words are true regarding Tkach's WCG in fact the other COG groups continue to fervently believe in and teach the same God Family doctrine that HWA taught. Why does Flurry say untrue things?
There is a dramatic time emphasis here —when “one is” during the sixth resurrection of the beast! God sent an apostle (“one sent from God”) when “five are fallen, and one is.” God the Father sent Mr. Armstrong at a precise time to proclaim His message to the world when “five are fallen and one is. ” That means that God would send a man on the scene to understand events surrounding the sixth Holy Roman Empire—when “one is.” (p. 6.)
It is conveniently ignored that HWA taught that World War II would end with the return of Christ during those days.
And it was out of the Roman Empire that the Holy Roman Empire arose in A.D. 554. (p. 6.)
Outside of the COGs the Byzantine Empire is never referred to as the Holy Roman Empire. Armstrongism's insistence on calling the Byzantine Empire something else is yet another example of loading the term.
These prophecies were revealed to Herbert W. Armstrong. God would reveal much more to the PCG after Mr. Armstrong died. (p. 7.)
After Gerald Flurry established PCG he would change various dogmas and interpretations and release these new doctrines to PCG members as "new revelation".
Really, if we understood this one verse while Mr. Armstrong was alive, we could have realized that he probably would not have been alive during the final resurrection of the beast! (p. 7.)
It was widely taught by WCG's leaders that HWA would still be alive when Christ returned.
There is no way you can understand the book of Revelation without understanding the book of Daniel. Daniel 2 is the key to understanding Daniel 7. Daniel 7 is the key to understanding Revelation 13. Revelation 13 is the key to understanding Revelation 17. And the book of Revelation shows the time frame of all Bible prophecy. (p. 9.)
It was William Miller who taught this interpretation back in the 1830s and 1840s. HWA, Flurry and the other COG leaders are but imitating their predecessor Miller.
We will witness only one more head—then we can forget about the beast! Wars, terrorism, weather disasters—it will all be gone forever! When “the other” comes and finishes its work, Christ is going to come and rule forever! That’s what we need to get excited about most of all , not some titillating prophecy about the beast . (pp. 9-10.)
That would be a lot easier for PCG members to do if the PCG 1% did not constantly use "titillating" prophecies to get more members for PCG.
Revelation 17:6 shows the beast drunk on the blood of God’s saints. Many of the Laodiceans are saying nice things about that woman, but she has a history of murdering the people of God! That is what she does best! Yet the Laodiceans don’t have enough courage to tell this world what she is, even though that is what God has commanded us to do. (p. 10.)
While this may be true of Tkach's WCG the other COGs continue to fervently believe and teach that the Roman Catholic Church is the Woman described in Revelation 17.
Notice how God’s Church is intertwined with the beast. We are its number-one enemy. And those who are Laodicean—95 percent of God’s people today—will not be protected by God. They are going to die a bloody death and finally see—the hard way—just how deadly this murderous whore is. And hopefully they will believe God then and never forsake Him again. (p. 10.)
PCG insists that all those in the other COG groups are doomed to endure the Great Tribulation. PCG says the only way to escape the Great Tribulation is to join PCG and pay it three tithes for the rest of your life.
There is a two-pronged duality here. Antiochus is a type of both the spiritual and physical abomination in the latter days. First, an Antiochus is used by Satan to destroy God’s Church, spiritual Israel, from the inside. Then there is an Antiochus—leading the Holy Roman Empire—who destroys the nations of Israel. So there are two Antiochus types who destroy both spiritual and physical Israel. (p. 11.)
In 2013 Flurry would add to this dogma and insinuate that President Obama is another Antiochus just like Tkach and the future European dictator fated to conquer America. Essentially Flurry called Obama an Antichrist like figure.

Flurry later fear mongers about Satan and insist that he is very powerful.
God has an army of angels and saints. Satan has an army of demons and men—in this case sinning saints. In Daniel 10 is the example of Gabriel delivering a prophecy to Daniel and being attacked by Satan. Gabriel sent for Michael, and it took Michael and Gabriel 21 days to get past him! (Daniel 10:13). Satan has prodigious power! We really are in a spiritual war! The Philadelphia Church of God is fighting the same enemy that Daniel, Gabriel and Michael fought! This war is invisible. But the very elect are acutely aware of it! (pp. 11-12.)
Didn't Flurry just insist that PCG members should not fixate their attention on "titillating" stuff?
We are commanded to prophesy again as Mr. Armstrong did. The emphasis is on the warning—not the gospel, as it was with Mr. Armstrong. That is because time is so short and world events are extremely horrifying. We are in the period of time when Satan is cast down —the Laodicean era. We still preach the gospel to the world. However, we emphasize the warning that leads to the good news. The warning still points to the return of Jesus Christ—the good news of the coming Kingdom of God (or the gospel). This vision of Daniel 8:9-27 ends with the return of Christ. (p. 12.)
How confusing this is. One moment Flurry says not to focus so much on prophecy. Next he is talking all about such claimed prophecies.

Flurry then insists that Ambassador Auditorium was specifically mentioned in the Bible and he insinuates that it will later be demolished.
The place of God’s sanctuary was cast down. The International Critical Commentary says, “The word for place is rare, implying a construction.” Yes, it is rare: it’s talking about the Ambassador Auditorium. Mr. Armstrong called it God’s house—it was built as a place to worship and glorify God. It has already been destroyed spiritually, and I would expect that it will be destroyed physically as well. (p. 13.)
Twelve years later Ambassador Auditorium is still standing. It is now owned by a church unaffiliated with Armstrongism but it still stands.

Flurry then threatens the salvation of his followers by saying that if a PCG member fails to put one's heart into building up PCG he or she might lose salvation.
The priority in Daniel 8 is the work. When Satan destroyed that, he knew everything was destroyed. If we don’t do the work, the Church dies. The work, or open door, identifies the Church (Revelation 3:7-8). That is how you know where God is. You individually must put your heart into the work, or you will die spiritually! (p. 15.)
Such threatening language will frighten those convinced that remaining in PCG is the only way to be in contact with God.
Look how quickly the leaders in Pasadena got rid of Mystery of the Ages after Mr. Armstrong died! Joe Tkach Jr. said that Mystery of the Ages was riddled with errors—but in fact, it was critical to the work! We use it all the time; it is required reading for baptismal candidates. One Laodicean evangelist (who has since died) said it was essential to God’s work; shortly after that, his boss said it was “riddled with errors.” Then the evangelist changed his own thinking to agree with his human boss! We must have more spiritual depth and courage than that! (p. 15.)
And so it is revealed again that PCG uses HWA's last book as required reading for those wishing to be baptized by PCG.
He is leading us into spiritual warfare. He led us into a six-year court battle, and because we followed, we won the rights to print Mr. Armstrong’s writings and now the work is flourishing as never before. We would never do this work if we didn’t have a wartime frame of mind. Daniel had a 21-day battle; we had a six-year battle! That makes sense, because Christ is about to return and Satan is more wrathful than ever. We fight against Satan’s army—millions of demons. Are we aware of the invisible warriors? (p. 18.)
So Flurry boasts that PCG is now flourishing as never before after gaining the copyrights to some of HWA's writings. Twelve years later how true is this for PCG? Especially now that Flurry wants to add the financial burden of a private airplane upon PCG's expenses?
First, let’s look at the abomination inside God’s Church. When did the transgressors “come to the full,” spiritually? Certainly that happened in the court case. As it says in verses 11-12, they were saints who did fight for Christ, but then they turned and fought against Christ! The transgressors really came to the full then. If that wasn’t the peak of their evil, it was extremely close. That horror started when the son of perdition started putting the emphasis on the college. He destroyed God’s truth and began talking in enigmas and riddles. In the beginning of the WCG after Mr. Armstrong died, there were many doctrinal changes. Some of the ministers and people asked about those changes. The leadership would say, “Changes? What changes?” Then after they completely destroyed the major doctrines, they boasted about the changes. This evil leader, inside God’s own Church, is a type of Antiochus, whom historians describe as a Machiavellian diplomat—he had a monstrous skill at deceiving people. (p. 18.)
By "son of perdition" Flurry means Tkach.
Now he has been a “king of fierce countenance” in totally wrecking God’s Church—not with God’s government, but the government of the devil! (p. 19.)
If there was no one man rule as HWA established within WCG then Tkach would never have been able to change WCG the way he did. But Flurry sidesteps that issue.
We need to watch the European Union for a man stepping in and seizing control of that entity through flatteries. He is going to hijack the EU. We need to watch the great whore for signs of her riding the beast. Politics in Europe are going to shift dramatically to the right. (p. 20.)
Ironically PCG happens to lean far to the right themselves. Nevertheless PCG has often scare mongered that Europe will shift to the right and turn against the United States and conquer it.

In the quote below the bracketed section is in the original booklet.
I’m sure the false church will be working behind the scenes. Most likely, we will see a church leader come along who knows the German system and will help get the political leader in who can really swing Europe around—a good strong believer of this church’s doctrines. [This was written before Pope Benedict XVI, a German pope, was coronated.] That political emperor is out there now, looking for an empire. As world troubles become more frightening, the empire will be seeking an emperor. (p. 20.)
And later, unexpectedly for PCG, Pope Benedict resigned.
It’s not easy to look at things that way, but how important it is! Many young people want to marry—but how many want to marry someone who’s wrapped up in the return of Jesus Christ? What a wonderful mate that would be! What joy and success comes from having a mate, and being around people, who can help you build your life around finishing God’s work! (p. 22.)
Flurry insists Daniel 8 means Christ's return is very near.
Daniel 8:9-27 is all one vision. Here is the point of this vision : If the truth of God has been cast down, CHRIST IS ABOUT TO RETURN. If the place of God’s sanctuary has been cast down, CHRIST IS ABOUT TO RETURN. If an evil Antiochus rules God’s Church, CHRIST IS ABOUT TO RETURN. If there was a Malachi’s Message used to cleanse His Church , CHRIST IS ABOUT TO RETURN — in this last end, and now this last hour. (p. 22.)
Chapter 2

Flurry boasts that after Christ's return PCG members will conquer the world. Any opposition will be destroyed.
Nebuchadnezzar really uttered a prophecy of what will soon happen when the saints of God rule with a rod of iron! If people don’t bow down to the true God, they’ll be cut in pieces—and much worse! Nebuchadnezzar recognized that this was the way it had to be: he could see that no other god was as strong as this God—the same God who leads the Philadelphia Church of God today. (p. 28.)
And so often PCG vilifies other religions such as the Roman Catholic Church and the Muslim community of somehow yearning to take over the world. And yet PCG teaches that they themselves shall do this after Christ's return.
How about us? If we don’t receive blessings, something is not right in our lives. Perhaps we aren’t passing our tests and trials. (p. 29.)
If something goes wrong Flurry insists it cannot be PCG's fault. If a PCG member pays the three tithes and endures financial problems because of this Flurry is denying that they could possibly blame PCG's practices for his or her problems.
God the Father wants a family. He loves the people of this world deeply. He wants to give them life —but they won’t accept it! God knows that, for most of them, it’s going to take a lot of correction before they’ll recognize His plan for them and accept an invitation into His Family. (p. 31.)
This denigration of humanity is a license for PCG ministers to treat their followers harshly.
God’s lukewarm people don’t honor their Father (Malachi 1:6). Already they have lost God’s family plan, which is the gospel! They don’t see God’s family plan in the book of Daniel or throughout the whole Bible. What blindness! They have lost everything. What a massive tragedy! (p. 31.)
Why does Flurry say untrue things? Many of the COG groups continue to teach and fervently believe in HWA's God Family dogma.
Human nature is not humble; it is self-willed, and we all have it! Don’t kid yourself! We don’t realize how self-willed we are, so God has to show us! God knows how to humble the proud. Sometimes He has to get out His paddle and correct us. He tries and tests us, because He is shaping and molding—He wants us to rule the world. We must respond to that correction in the right way. We want to be like Daniel and say God is my judge. We had better be humble people.

Those who walk in pride, God is able to abase. In fact, we should regularly ask God to humble us in His mercy. (p. 32.)
And so we see Flurry teaching his followers to loath themselves and even reform their minds to welcome being rebuked by PCG's leaders.
Nebuchadnezzar wrote part of the book of Daniel, including these verses. Sir Henry Rawlings was a famous historian. He found a document by Nebuchadnezzar where he recorded this exactly as Daniel did. (p. 33.)
Is this anecdote true?
Is there a better book in the Bible regarding trials than Daniel? These men were consistently tried and promoted, tried and prospered—it was an endless cycle. We too are being tried and tested, and we prosper and are promoted. God is judging us, grading us, evaluating us. God wants us to learn to let Him judge us and to totally put our lives in His hands, as Daniel did. (p. 35.)
Flurry uses the example of Daniel and his friends to insist that PCG's dogmas that members will get to be God Family members in the future are true.

Here Flurry tries his hand at divination using the names of Daniel and his three friends.
The Jewish names of Daniel and his three friends carry special significance. The letters in their names can be assigned specific numeric values: Daniel, 95; Hananiah, 120; Mishael, 381; and Azariah, 292. Those numbers all add up to 888. Seven is perfection. But 888 is above perfection —which is what God is! (p. 35.)
888 is indeed above 7, just like 8, 9 and 10. What bizarre words he says here.

Flurry insists that PCG's God want a house for God like HWA's Ambassador Auditorium. This indicates that as early as 2005 Flurry was contemplating the construction of Armstrong Auditorium.
So why would God want a physical house of God today? Because it is a type of God’s spiritual house. This physical building helps reinforce in our minds that we are called today for one purpose: to do God’s work—which declares His message. Otherwise, we would be called after Christ returns like all the rest of humanity. Today, we are the small firstfruit harvest to help God with the great fall harvest of all humanity. This is the understanding that the Laodiceans—95 percent of God’s people—never did get. Or if they really got that message, they lost it. (p. 36.)
Flurry insists that one can only be right with God by being in PCG.
There is often a strength if you “remember your roots.” What a dramatic difference it would make if spiritual Israel—the Laodiceans—and the nations of Israel would remember their roots—their history with God! Only they have roots worth remembering! (p. 41.)
Flurry constantly insists to his followers that they are the true royalty as they are fated to rule the world under Christ for a thousand years and even afterwards will rule over those born into the God Family after Christ's return for all eternity.
We are God’s royalty! We will rule over Nebuchadnezzar and the kings of this world. God’s people must focus on the throne we’ll be sitting on and on God’s palace. We are already kings and priests who outrank every king on Earth! (p. 42.)
Maybe PCG members should see how far this claim of privilege go and argue with the IRS about taxes. On second thought they should not do such a thing.

Flurry then insists that his PCG is the voice of God.
People must hearken to “the voice” of God. Where is that voice? Who is speaking for God today? That voice is being trumpeted by the Philadelphia Church of God today. (p. 43.)
This is not true. PCG have made many false prophecies. There is no need for us to think that PCG just might be onto something. They are not. They are but false prophets.

Flurry fear mongers about various nations to insinuate that they will somehow destroy the United States in the near future.
Who sends these enemies to destroy us? God does it because of our vile sins! ... The Holy Roman Empire is going to besiege modern Israel in all our gates and then destroy us.
You can already see this prophecy moving toward its fulfillment; the European Union is moving into South America, making trade agreements that are taking business away from the United States. Venezuela, which has exported oil to the U.S. for years, now wants to award those contracts to China instead. Why would Latin America, which is right on the doorstep of the only superpower left in the world, go all the way across vast oceans to find alternate business partners? (p. 43.)
Perhaps Venezuela's acts just might have something to do with the fact that an attempted coup d'etet nearly overthrew the government in 2002. President Chávez insisted that the United States government supported the attempted coup.
We are entering the “times of the Gentiles.” Russia, China, Japan and the EU are forming alliances against the U.S. and biblical Israel. The U.S. is being besieged! Deuteronomy 28 is being fulfilled right now! Soon America will find it impossible to import oil and other necessities—just as Moses and Daniel said. Britain and the Jews in the Middle East are suffering a similar fate. (p. 44.)
Little did Flurry know that the oil industry would later devise fracking which would help cause the price of oil to plummet. But it must be stated that there are widespread concerns about the environmental impact of fracking. For instance since 2009 an unprecedented wave of earthquakes has been striking Oklahoma. Some suspect the fracking might be a contributing cause.
Daniel did not understand his own book (Daniel 12:4, 9). Today God has given a deep understanding of Daniel through Herbert W. Armstrong and myself. God reveals His truth for the Church only to apostles and prophets (Ephesians 3:5). Then those who support God’s true leaders help deliver the revelation to this world. All of God’s very elect are kings and priests in embryo, getting ready to rule this world. The kings of this world are about to be replaced. (p. 46.)
Gerald Flurry claims that he and he alone is able to present "new revelation" from God.
If the Laodiceans went through something like what Daniel and his three friends endured, would they survive it? Of course not! (p. 47.)
Actually many political and religious movements all over the world have endured all kinds of deadly persecution. PCG is based in the United States, a land with freedom of religion so PCG has never had to endure turmoil such as execution for one's religious practices.

Chapter 3

Here Flurry states that HWA did not uncover his doctrines from the Bible but instead these dogmas were divinely revealed to him. He threatens that if one does not agree then he or she might somehow apostatize like those in WCG who stayed after the Tkach Changes. This ignores the plentiful evidence showing that HWA merely synthesized various doctrines from other sources such as the Church of God (Seventh Day), Seventh Day Adventists, Jehovah's Witnesses and British Israelism.
The reason it is so dangerous to view this as something “Mr. Armstrong uncovered” is that it puts this understanding on a human level. Those men ended up following a human. That is the inevitable result of thinking on a human level: You will always end up following a human being, whether it’s yourself or another person. (p. 53.)
Flurry insists that one must be loyal to PCG in order to be right with God.
In our age, 95 percent of God’s people—and, shamefully, over 99 percent of His ministers—turned against God when a rebellious leader took over God’s Church. God’s government is a vital tool and a wonderful blessing, but human leaders can go astray. This puts a serious responsibility on each one of us to know where our Head—Jesus Christ—is. (p. 54.)
Flurry asserts that the publication of an 1984 booklet, History of Europe and the Church by Keith Stump, was done behind HWA's back supposedly by those who would later implement the Tkach changes.

Flurry complains that Stump is too sympathetic to Germany regarding the Treaty of Versailles.

Also noteworthy is his unusual reference to Nazi Germany as the "Holy Roman Empire" which is a part of PCG's loaded language. Outside of the PCG information bubble it is known that the Holy Roman Empire was abolished in 1806 after Emperor Francis II renounced the title to make sure Napoleon did not claim that title for himself.
Wait a minute. Was the Treaty of Versailles really “humiliating”? Perhaps some of the stipulations were too strong, but, after all, the world had just witnessed the death of 10 million people! And Germany started that war. For the most part, the Treaty of Versailles was right. Pushing it aside did not restore Germany’s honor! World War II wasn’t about righting the wrongs of the Versailles Treaty. That war was motivated by the Holy Roman Empire’s desire to rule the world! Politically correct language like Mr. Stump’s only perpetuates the problem. (p. 56.) 
Flurry complains that Stump mentioned that there were tensions between the Nazi dictatorship and the Vatican.
“For its part,” Mr. Stump wrote, “the Vatican is at first sympathetic toward fascism, though Pope Pius XI is critical of fascism’s use of violence.” Pius XI reigned from 1922 to 1939; he died at the beginning of World War II. He was replaced by Pius XII, about whom Mr. Stump says basically the same thing. Is that true—that these popes were against violence? No, not when it was inflicted on their enemies! (p. 56.)
Flurry seems to handle Stump's words badly. Stump said that Popes were opposed to fascism's use of violence but then Flurry then rhetorically asked if these popes were against violence in general. Based on what Flurry wrote in this passage it seems that he quotes Stump out of context.

Flurry then insists that persecution may come upon PCG for saying things like this.
You can envision that down the road we will become unpopular, because we are going to tell the truth about that history and end-time prophecy. (p. 57.)
The leaders of Armstrongism have constantly insisted that some sort of persecution will soon come upon them. Such things have never happened in the United States.

Flurry does not want to deal with the possibility that the Nazi regime did what they liked and disregarded what the Pope said about such things. Instead his anti-Catholic ideology is here reasserted. Contrary possibilities are ignored. Flurry asserts that the Roman Catholic Church "was riding and guiding" the Nazi regime.
Keith Stump wrote as though the church was trying to head off World War II. God’s version of these events is very different: He says the church was riding and guiding the beast! The religious leaders weren’t guiding the politicians as much as they would have liked, but there has always been a conflict between the church and the state over ultimate control of that empire. The church wants to run the show, and so does the political head. (p. 57.)
Flurry mentions that he calls the lineage of political entities that HWA labelled the "Holy Roman Empire."

Flurry insists that if Stump's booklet is correct then he, Gerald Flurry, knows nothing.
If that church played a “peacemaking role,” as Mr. Stump suggested, then I don’t know anything about history and prophecy! (p. 58.)
Flurry cites a book named Hitler's Pope to insist his anti-Catholic attitude is justified.
Keith Stump described the pope as being “keenly concerned about the Jews.” Hitler’s Pope was written by John Cornwell, a Catholic. It is unusually authoritative because he had access to the Vatican’s own archives. That is an extremely rare privilege, given only to a tiny few people whom it trusts. He wrote that Pius XII had a history of being anti-Semitic, and I believe this is accurate. (p. 58.)
Incidentally LCG's John Ogwyn cited this very same book in his booklet, The Beast of Revelation.
The Concordat signed between the papacy and Italy's Fascist government was a prelude to one signed four years later between the papacy and the German Nazi government. The role of the Vatican in establishing both Mussolini and Hitler in power is detailed in Hitler's Pope, the Secret History of Pius XII (John Cornwell, Viking, 1999). (John Ogwyn, The Beast of Revelation, 2000, Chapter 3, p. 24.)
Flurry insists that Stump's booklet was published without HWA's knowledge.
These Laodicean leaders knew that Mr. Armstrong would not agree with that booklet. So why did they write it? They were aware that Mr. Armstrong was nearly blind and would not read this booklet. That means they also had enough control over headquarters and this 91-year-old man to keep anybody from getting to him and exposing their satanic plot! (p. 59.)
He then insists that being right by joining PCG is worth giving up one's life. Such talk incites fanaticism.
If we do our job, the Laodiceans will humble themselves before our feet—return to what God revealed. God is going to make them know that He loved us. 
What is it worth, as a human being, to have God say, I’m going to make them come back to what you believe, and make them know that I loved you! Isn’t that worth dying for? (pp. 59-60.)
He boasts that those who "fight against" PCG will face repercussions from PCG's God. He boasts that the facilities of PCG are built by PCG's God. He also refers to the Tkach changes.
People had better be careful when they fight against us. Of course people will cause us problems—but the God we serve will have His vengeance! You don’t go up against the people God clothed with the sun without incurring repercussions from God!  
Yet these men from God’s own Church would dare write and speak as they did, sounding so unlike their Father and their Husband!  
Do we realize who we are? Who clothes us? Who builds our work facilities? How we answer those questions separates us from the Laodiceans. (p. 60.)
Flurry has long gone to great length to separate his followers from the members of the other COG groups who are demonized by him as Laodiceans and unworthy of even social contact by PCG members.

Flurry minimizes the problems of the Dark Ages by insisting that the "darkest part of the Dark Ages" will soon occur.
That is not just history. Ninety percent of God’s prophecy is being fulfilled in this end time. The darkest part of the Dark Ages is just now beginning to develop! (p. 61.)
He insists that it is not easy to promote his teachings but he boasts that the more PCG does so this will bless his followers.
It’s not going to be easy to proclaim this message. But we must do it, and the more we do it, the more we’ll prosper; the more God will promote us. (p, 62.)
Has PCG prospered since Flurry had these words published twelve years ago? It is still just another COG group stuck in its little niche, a minuscule imitation of WCG in its height in the early 1980s. And now Flurry wishes to impose the added expense of buying and maintaining a private airplane.
These people were corrupted by flatteries and vanities. They were saying nice things to each other: You’re doing such a good job—you’re such a wonderful minister—you have such a powerful vocabulary. Just remember to continue to prophesy not! They were led to destroy prophetic teaching so as not to be labeled a cult. What kind of future awaits people who do that? It’s so painful, you cry thinking about it! (p. 63.)
He boasts that PCG has "some pretty impressive exploits" in order to convince his readers to join his organization and pay tithes to it.
If you look at what God has done through His people year by year in this small work, you would have to say these are some pretty impressive exploits. But we will do many more heroic acts if we use God’s universe-size strength! The greatest work is still ahead. (p. 64.)
He insists that PCG's God is all powerful but then he mentions that many have moved beyond Armstrongism and that this can happen even to PCG members. (How convenient it is to rationalize away the fact that some PCG members leave.)
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—in a fiery furnace! It means a fiery trial. Even when people come into this remnant and understand, they can still fall. 
Should we be shocked if some 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.” (p. 65.)
One sign of an authoritarian group is that they insist that there is no legitimate reason to leave the group.

Flurry insists that the US dollar is destined to fail.
Mr. Armstrong always believed the Holy Roman Empire would develop because of a crisis—mainly the failure of the dollar. Today the dollar is in real trouble. The chief economist at Morgan Stanley ... was reported in the Boston Herald to have predicted at a meeting with select investors that “America has no better than a 10 percent chance of avoiding economic ‘Armageddon’” (Nov. 23, 2004; emphasis mine). [He] predicted a 30 percent chance of a slump soon and a 60 percent chance that “we’ll muddle through for a while, and delay the eventual Armageddon.” That is a terrifying economic prophecy! We can be sure it is going to happen. The massively debt burdened American economy simply can’t continue very much longer. 
How long will the Armageddon be delayed? Until God’s work is finished. Then God will protect His people who did that work. (pp. 66-67.)
Twelve years later Flurry's dire proclamation that the dollar will fall is still practically impossible. The United States cannot be forced to default because the federal debt is denominated in a currency that it, the US government, produces. It is not possible for the US government to be rendered bankrupt. Interest rates on US bonds are very low because the financial world trusts it.

Flurry then belly aches that "biblical Israel" (the United States and Britain and the State of Israel) do not share his negative view of the German people and the German government.
But biblical Israel likes to think of them [Germans] as harmless wild animals. Our nations do that because of their broken wills. They fear to face the extremely unpleasant truth. However, it’s only a matter of time until they must do just that. The only way these beasts go away is when they themselves are conquered. (p. 70.)
He complains that some readers think he is being alarmist with his denunciations of Germany.
If you think I’m being too alarmist, you need to study the history of the Holy Roman Empire and see what Satan is prophesied to do to physical Israel. Very soon, people who say what I’m saying now will be killed for doing so! Mr. Stump’s reasoning leads to the destruction of nations and of churches! Look what happened in God’s Church because of the synagogue of Satan! Spiritually, that Church has been totally destroyed. Mr. Armstrong warned us in the 1970s that history would repeat itself if we didn’t learn from that debacle. How right he was. (p. 73.)
Flurry prompts his readers to focus upon PCG's dogma of the coming Millennium continuously.
Get ready now for the return of Jesus Christ. That greatest event ever to occur in the universe is almost here. It is time for each one of us to wake up! Is this majestic, universe-rattling event a part of your daily thinking and acting? (p. 74.)
Flurry then insists that PCG members are not to be overly fixated on who will be the feared European dictator fated to conquer the United States.
“Until the Ancient of days came, and judgment was given to the saints of the most High; and the time came that the saints possessed the kingdom” (verse 22). We live and yearn for this prophecy to be fulfilled. Our passion is not about who will lead the religious or political beast. (pp. 76-77.)
Then why did PCG's leaders so often fixate on Edmund Stoiber and, from 2009 onward, Karl-Theodor zu Guttenburg?

Flury ends this chapter insisting that most of us alive today will see (PCG's) Christ return.
What is amazing about these prophecies is that we are living through them now. Ninety percent of Bible prophecy is being fulfilled today. What an age to be alive! Most of us will get to see Christ’s Second Coming. (p. 77.)
This promise has been continuously made by HWA and his imitators since the 1930s. But they are but false prophets so their words will not be fulfilled.

To be continued...

8 comments:

  1. Thanks for beginning another detailed analysis! Again, there is no shortage of COG nonsense to leave one dazed.
    Interesting that on Monday (perhaps after his KUHL interview) Bob Thiel posted a piece on prophecy that included a WND article on Isaac Newton. It noted Newton's 1733 work, “Observations on the Prophecies of Daniel and the Apocalypse of St. John” with a calculated end-time year of 2060. While I haven't read this work, I feel Sir Isaac didn't say we should be watching for Germans... except maybe for Leibniz.

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    1. Hoss, speaking of Leibniz, sort of the first of the pioneers of computer science (Newton never built a machine that could add, subtract, multiply and divide like Leibniz did and had some wrong ideas that Leibniz had fixed long before that sort of thing became popular in the 20th century), do you suppose that this 777 that Armstrongists are so hep on is really octal?

      "Is there a better book in the Bible regarding trials than Daniel?"

      The book of Job springs to mind, but that might not be in the PCG Bible. Isn't the PCG Bible the modified version of "Mystery of the Ages" which isn't really based on the Bible at all. Well... not in the usual sense of the term.

      Flurry should follow David Pack's lead and just throw out the Bible and tell everyone that the truth is anything he says -- "His Word is Truth".

      We would also like to remind everyone that the current British Monarchy is actually German. There's no really good way to work that out in Armstrongist theology....

      Excellent job in exposition here. Absolutely amazing.

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    2. Hmm, the WCG had an IBM mainframe, so they may have be thinking in Hex. And you've probably seen the proof that Christmas = Halloween: Dec 25 = Oct 31.

      Some hold that the book of Job is allegorical. One hint is that the man Job was "perfect in all his ways", as any woman can tell you, there's no such thing as a perfect man...

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    3. We should point out that there is no such thing as a perfect woman.

      The FemiNazis should rethink their positions.

      [A diamond is a girl's best friend; dog is man's best friend. See the problem here?]

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  2. Would someone please lock up Revelation again??!!!

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  3. Flurry writes: These Laodicean leaders knew that Mr. Armstrong would not agree with that booklet. So why did they write it? They were aware that Mr. Armstrong was nearly blind and would not read this booklet. That means they also had enough control over headquarters and this 91-year-old man to keep anybody from getting to him and exposing their satanic plot!
    ______________

    My question is, where was God? Asleep? On the toilet?

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    1. On vacation. In another galaxy.

      It's tough work. Sometimes you just have to get away from it all....

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  4. We are commanded to prophesy again as Mr. Armstrong did.

    If that means false prophesies, PCG has a lot of competition from the other COGs.

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