Monday, September 30, 2013

HWA's Last Sermon (In Which He Threatens Members' Salvation)

This is Herbert W. Armstrong's last sermon, delivered on the Feast of Trumpets, September 16, 1985. Here is a transcript of it from Pabco's Home Page.

This was one of first writings I read on Pabco's Home Page. Knowing that he would soon die and that it was his last sermon, it was only natural that I, as a devotee of his, would be drawn to that sermon transcript.

The sermon is mainly focused upon the supposedly immanent return of Christ to the Earth. It is HWA's teaching that the Feast of Trumpets symbolizes the return of Christ.

He never shouts until 40 minutes into it.

Here is HWA pretending that he does not set dates and then proceeds to do so. But of course he is careful to maintain plausible deniability. 
Of course it doesn't mean that Christ will come on this certain day in just so many years from now. But there is ample reason to think that things have happened that way in the fulfillment of prophecies previously in the other Holy Days, and it could happen that way. But we don't know because God had said that no man, not even Christ, knew the time or the day or the hour when Christ would come. Only the Father knows that. So we can't set any time whatsoever. But we do know by all signs and enough of the prophecies to know it's now near, it's even at the door. It's very close to us now. We are the last generation of this world and this age!
We know from other sources, including Mystery of the Ages, that he was teaching that Christ would return by the year 2000.

Those false prophecies were merely the latest in a long line of false prophecies promoted by HWA, including his infamous false prophecy of 1975.
There is not a word in the Bible that says we will ever go to heaven.
But we can transport ourselves instantaneously anywhere in the Universe as God Beings, can't we? So if I became a God Being I could go to Heaven whenever I want or need to.
We are part of the remnant of God's one true Church of the Philadelphia era. There is another era yet to come. I think it'll only exist briefly, at the most about two-and-half or three years. 
Considering how Gerald Flurry loves to demonize "Laodiceans" (WCG/GCI members and ex-WCG members who did not join PCG) it seems odd to see how HWA seems to think Laodiceans would only predominate during the time of the Great Tribulation when the Philadelphian Christians, supposedly, would be tucked away in a Place of Safety unable to preach to the world.

Continuing we see once again how HWA tried to overly romanticize Ambassador College in order to keep WCG members persuaded they were supporting a worthy endeavor.
But in any event this Church has taken what was the nearest thing to a slum in Pasadena which is the very ground on which we are stationed right here-- right now! And here is, in some respects, the most beautiful building on the face of the Earth, put here. This was all slums, and the most beautiful place in Pasadena is this campus. And we have taken it, or rather, Christ has taken it, and used us and we have submitted to Him and He has done it -- we haven't really -- and turned it into beauty. 
But was it really so special? This article shows how most people in Pasadena went they merry way, never knowing that very close by lived a bunch of properties believed by thousands to be paradise on Earth, a foretaste of the World Tomorrow HWA promised would soon come.

Shortly after that HWA threatens WCG members' salvation if they do not follow the new Pastor General, who turned out to be Joseph Tkach. It is found at one hour, fifteen minutes into the recording.
And if I were not here it would be another who would become the Pastor General. And if that should ever happen, if you want to get into God's Kingdom you will follow that Pastor General. And you will remain united and you will remain one. And your eternity depends on that. Every one of you, don't you forget it. Because years ago this Church was very seriously, it's a matter of seven or eight years ago, still divided. Thank God it's not really divided today. There maybe a little contention here or there that maybe we just haven't quite discovered. Maybe some have a little contention they are keeping to themselves. It hasn't surfaced. But we have such wonderful cooperation now, such a wonderful attitude and spirit of love, the Spirit of God and of God's Holy Spirit. Brethren, do everything and pray your heart out that it can continue that way in the Church.
Near the end HWA speculates on how some will try to seize power within WCG for themselves.
And there are those that are just waiting for me to die and like buzzards they would like to come and gobble up all you people and tell you that no one else is fit to lead you but them. And they look to human charisma, someone who has a certain personality, someone who's a good entertainer, but God looks on the heart. Don't forget it, brethren. People are always fooled by human personality and the charisma that attracts them right to someone. That must never happen in this Church. And I am going to do all I can to stay alive and prevent it happening as long as I can.
Little did he know that his hand picked successor, Joseph Tkach, would renounce Armstrongism and using the absolute power he inherited from HWA would transform WCG into (for the most part) a mainstream Protestant Evangelical church.

Listening to him throughout the sermon one can perceive that HWA has been greatly weakened. The vigor one can see in him in his younger days has greatly diminished.

Alas, HWA was never pulled up before a court and punished for the terrible harm he inflicted upon his followers by his anti-medicine superstition (which he took from the Jehovah's Witnesses), his arbitrary destruction of marriages caused by his divorce and remarriage doctrine until 1974, his cruel orders to shun ex-members, his three tithes, causing WCG members to be isolated from society by making them renounce ordinary habits and customs, spreading false fear inducing prophecies, his authoritarianism, etc.

If anyone is still furious at him perhaps they should listen to this sermon. Perhaps hearing him in such a weak state, might make them see that he did suffer in the end. Perhaps some can accept this as a sort of justice for the many people who suffered because of him. He should have been hauled before a court of justice and thrown into jail for what he did to WCG members. That never happened, but at least it can be said that his work fell apart under Tkach. How great was he if his own organization could fall apart so quickly?

So that was HWA's last sermon. A sermon in which he threatened WCG members' eternal salvation should they not obey the new boss, claims Christ is soon returning, and claims the College he runs is the most beautiful building on Earth (which his organization no longer owns).

Saturday, September 28, 2013

James Malm's Burdensome Sabbath

Banned by HWA has a post up detailing how one Malmite follower is finding following the strict rules set down by James Malm to be a burden.
I have been reading your writings. I no longer go to restaurants on the Sabbath or “get out of the house ”

My question is this. During back to back Sabbaths, one can read so much, study so much and listen to sermons so much. How can we pass the time and still keep the Sabbath holy. The Sabbath has become more of a burden & endurance rather than joy. Eating warmed up & cold foods has left me weak with blood sugar levels unstable. This has caused me to not feel well all day long and my spiritual condition has been suffering. ” and Not man for the Sabbath.”

This is not a leading question with an agenda. I really grapple with this. Your help would be deeply appreciated. 
This is the perfectly predictable result of the legalistic rules and regulations James Malm has imposed upon his followers. It is tragic that some people take his words so seriously that they are willing to ruin their lives for him.

This is very similar to my own experience with Armstrongism's Sabbath and what Meredith taught me about it. I can only imagine what it must have been like for the many, many others who actually joined an Armstrongite group.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Combing Through Pabco's Home Page

(Update April 20, 2014: Pabco's Home Page has since moved to The links have updated accordingly.)

At first I encountered Armstrongism through LCG. It took awhile for me to piece together that LCG was largely imitating the writings and teachings of one Herbert W. Armstrong. At first I was unaware of him and did not know where to read his writings. Later I finally found a copy of The Plain Truth About Christmas at Pabco's Home Page. It took a little longer for me to find the website itself.

Even today, when I link to one of HWA's writings I usually link to Pabco's Home Page because I usually read it there.

Pabco's Home Page appears to align itself with the Church of God - An International Community, David Hulme's splinter group.

Several articles maintained at Pabco's Home Page (The Bible Story and Hoeh's church history booklet for instance) gives grateful thanks to Church of God Cyber Auxiliary (a Montana non-profit). 

Although this internet archive appears to be run by a member of the Church of God, An International Community, David Hulme's splinter group, I can distinctly recall when Pabco's Home Page included a gloss on Mystery of the Ages, chapter 6, that said the work of WCG is now being continued by the Global Church of God. Presumably that was written in before the split of 1998. Seeing that only further persuaded me to choose LCG over any other COG. Back then Chapters 6 and 7 (in contrast to the rest of that book) of Mystery of the Ages were COG Cyber Auxiliary pages, noticeable due to the sky blue background of those pages, but they are not now and are simply regular pages, with the old paper background like the first five chapters.

I devotedly read many of the articles and books stored at Pabco's Home Page. I did not read everything but many of the most important and memorable writings by HWA I read there, including 
  •  The Plain Truth about Christmas. This was first of HWA's booklets I found on the Internet. I was already aware of LCG's prohibition of Christmas, but this was the first time I heard about how he said it was derived from a pagan festival celebrating the rebirth of Nimrod. At the time I was unaware that HWA simply based this idea from Alexander Hyslop's The Babylons, a book from the 1860s which is now totally discredited.
  • A True History of the True Church. The second booklet I read on this website. Herman Hoeh's booklet utterly bedazzled me with its retelling of Nimrod, how Shem pursued him all the way to Rome and killed him, how Saint Peter's Basillica is built upon Nimrod's grave.What astounding revelation, I thought. Then I was further amazed at how Hoeh described the Bible predicted that "God's Church" would be cast into the wilderness for 1260 and that this started with the Council of Nicaea in AD 325. (I was disappointed to see that Hoeh did not cite anything happening 1260 years later as a sign the church came out of hiding.) This booklet is also invaluable because it also details some of the false reasoning behind HWA and Hoeh's false prophecy of 1972-5. I did not make the connection for quite awhile after I read it. Essentially Hoeh was insisting that the Apostolic church was only allowed to operate two 19 year time cycles (AD 31-69) and the same thing would happen to the Radio Church of God (1934-72).
  • Mystery of the Ages. COG people talk about this book a lot. The fact that it was HWA's last adds a note of poignancy not to be found with his other books. I was very excited to read this book. It did its work well further bedazzling me into believing that HWA was a special man. In fact the book has many inaccurate teachings and is filled with nonsense, not least his assertion that the true Gospel was suppressed in AD 53 simply so he could say he restored the gospel to the world 1900 years later in 1953 with the first broadcast on Radio Luxembourg.
  • The United States and Great Britain in Prophecy. When I read this I was struck by how HWA did not appeal to extra-biblical evidence as much as LCG's booklet did, but I was so bedazzled by HWA's teachings I ignored that disquieting thought. It was also very long. However the DNA shows clearly that British and white Americans are not related to the Jews. Also I was quite struck by his assertion in this book that those who observe the seventh day Sabbath are set apart from society. That statement seemed most profound to me. Today I now see that he is simply mentioning how his teachings were isolating his followers from the rest of society in order to better lord it over them. Getting isolated from society is a sign you are getting in a cult.
  • The Incredible Human Potential. One of the last books of HWA's I read. I already understood the doctrine of the God Family from LCG's Your Ultimate Destiny and their so-called Bible Study Course, so I was reluctant to read this for a while because it seemed slightly redundant to read this as well. But I read it anyway. I recall once hearing how LCG's Mario Hernandez got HWA to autograph his copy of this book. I was somewhat disappointed to see that sections of this book appear in Mystery of the Ages, which I had already read.
  • The Wonderful World Tomorrow. Here HWA describes what the utopian 1000 year reign of Christ upon the Earth will be like. I heard LCG's leader say that he caused HWA to temper his statement that various Biblical will fulfill certain roles in the World Tomorrow and instead persuaded him to only say maybe so and so will be assigned to do this and that. Having already read Mystery of the Ages I was somewhat disappointed to see that sections of this book appear in Mystery of the Ages, Chapter 7.
  • The Autobiography of HWA. When I read in LCG's Tomorrow's World that this (then) mysterious figure, HWA, had even written a two volume autobiography I greatly yearned to read it. When I discovered that it was available on the Internet I read it. HWA bedazzled me with his account of how God helped him out in many ways and places. I did not know then of the great harm he had inflicted upon so many people.
  • The Missing Dimension in Sex. What is the missing dimension in sex anyway? I, HWA, as the only true representative of God, have the right to tell you what to do with sex, as revealed in the Bible. HWA says this as though every other religious writer does not do the same thing. At the time I was unaware that Herbert W. Armstrong committed incest for ten years with his daughter. Somehow I think listening to an incestuous man telling you what to do about sex is a bad idea. Also it only came to my attention this year that HWA did not write it alone. It's first edition, entitled God Speaks Out on the "New Morality", was written by several men, including Roderick C. Meredith, Ernest Martin, and Dr. Ralph Merrill. Apparently it was Merrill who made the diagrams in the book. So it seems to me that HWA was lying to WCG members by pretending he was sole author of that book in its later editions. I find it odd that even Meredith got his name scrubbed out of the book. And despite that rebuke to him Meredith continued to play along and continue serving HWA and getting his paycheck from the organization HWA started.
  • The Bible Story. Many people recall the illustrations. However because I read it here I never looked at the illustrations until long after I had read it. Therefore my memory of this retelling of the Old Testament is not blighted by those illustrations unlike most others.
  • Pagan Holidays or God's Holy Days - Which? Here HWA condemns common festivals in order to isolate his followers from the surrounding society so that they will spend more money and time on his organization.
  • 1975 in Prophecy. Here is HWA's infamous false prophecy. As a believer in HWA's teachings I did not want to believe that he was a false prophet. Later I read his damage control article in Tomorrow's World, published after the Great Tribulation failed to start in 1972 as he prophesied, and HWA insisted that 1975 only referred to the prediction of other scientists on when humanity would create a technological utopia. If you only read that booklet you could believe him because, oddly enough, the booklet does not explain why the date for Christ's return was set at 1975. But Hoeh's booklet on church history exposes HWA for the shameless liar he is. That booklet discusses the prophecy that the Great Tribulation would start in 1972, saying it is dual with apostolic Christianity only having 38 years before fleeing the Roman army in AD 69. HWA was lying. HWA did predict Christ to return in 1975. That is a major reason why the Radio Church of God expanded so much in the 1950s and 1960s, and why there was little turmoil until the 1970s because the WCG members and ministers were united by the urgency to get the work done before 1972. Whatever problems existed would only have to be endured until 1975 when you would get to become a God being, as fully God as God is God. It would be a long time before I woke up to HWA's deception. 
  • The Proof of the Bible.
  • The Truth about Masonry. Anti-Masonry polemic. Asserts legend of Hiram Abiff is really about Nimrod.
  • The Plain Truth about Easter. Like the anti-Christmas booklet I was utterly bedazzled by HWA's descriptions of how Easter is the name of a pagan goddess, that lent came from "pagan devil worshippers", that eggs are pagan symbol, that Easter was introduced as part of a vicious conspiracy involving suppressing knowledge that Christ was resurrected on Saturday, that it was Sixtus I who wickedly introduced Sunday worship in Rome around AD 110, that Communion used to be universally observed on Saturday, etc.
Among the articles I read were:
  • Who or What is the Prophetic Beast?
  • The Resurrection was not on Sunday. I was most fascinated when I first heard of this teaching. How amazing is that? I thought. All this time I thought Jesus was resurrected on Sunday morning. Now I learn that he was resurrected on Saturday evening and was actually crucified on Wednesday. Actually, like many things, it appears HWA did not know what he was talking about.
  • Did God Create a Devil?
  • Are We in the Last Days?
  • Has Time Been Lost? Apparently HWA plagiarized this booklet from a COG7 booklet.
  • The Book of Revelation Revealed at Last!
  • Is Jesus God?
  • What is a Liberal? Here HWA labels dissident ministers and members as 'liberals' and falsely accuses them of trying to seize control of WCG and overthrow HWA for selfish gain, instead of seeking to address the serious issues these brave people were trying to address. 
  • How to Prevent Sin.
  • Does Your Child Lie?. 
  • Lazarus and the Rich Man. One of the first articles I read.
  • The Seven Laws of Success.
  • The Origin of Halloween. Here the Papacy is blamed for inventing this holiday.
  • The Middle East in Prophecy, I was perplexed by how HWA here identified Ethiopia as the King of the South, because LCG said that role would be fulfilled by an Arab-Muslim power yet to arise.
  • The Greatest Story Never Told! Adds details to the Nativity story top support the Armstrongite dogma of British Israelism.
  • Did Christ Reorganize the Church? Old 1939 article in which HWA condemned a specific way of church organization then being practiced by Andrew Dugger's splinter group from COG7. While doing so HWA condemned one man rule as like the image of the Beast, meaning like the Papacy. Later cited by brave dissidents to question the necessity of HWA's one man rule which he called 'God's Government' and expose how HWA appears to have opportunistically created an authoritarian dictatorship for his own selfish ends.
  • Which Day is the Christian Sabbath? Here HWA asserts that Christians are to observe the Sabbath (Friday sunset to Saturday sunset) and must not worship on Sunday.
  • Mission of the Philadelphia Church Era. Here HWA lists eighteen 'restored truths' he claims to have restored to 'God's Church'.
  • No! I was Never a Jehovah's Witness or Seventh Day Adventist. Here HWA insists he was never a member of those organizations in order to obscure the fact that he took a lot of his teachings from them. It is priceless for his deceptive assertion that he learned his teachings direct from God through the Bible. This was not true.
  • The Mystery of Melchizedek Solved! Here HWA claims Melchizedek was the pre-incarnate Christ. This idea is fairly within 'fallen' Christianity. My copy of The Amplified Bible also teaches this idea. This is not an idea unique to Armstrongism.
  • The True Reason Why the Jews Rejected Christ. Here HWA claims because the Pharisees were collaborators with the occupying Romans and feared Jesus Christ would overthrow Roman rule immediately thus leaving the Pharisees without a job and a source of income.
  • Daniel Nine Proves Jesus is the Christ. Here William Dankenbring cites Daniel 9 to claim it precisely dated the first coming of Jesus Christ.
  • The Plain Truth about Old Testament Polygamy. Here HWA denies that God ever encouraged or idealized polygamy.
  • Must God's Ministers by Ordained by the Hand of Man? Here HWA asserts that 'God's Church' has, and must always, by led by men who have been ordained by ministers. This teaching is conviniently forgotten by some.
  • Tongues: Is the Pentecost Experience Being Repeated? Here HWA strongly say no. He even implies that Pentecostals are being demon possessed. This is notable for being a reprinting and expansion of an article HWA wrote for the first issue of the The Plain Truth.
  • How Subtly Satan Used Make up to get the Church off Track. Here HWA defends reimposing the makeup ban by claiming that WCG letting women wear makeup allowed Satan to enter the church and begin a campaign of watering down doctrines which would have brought divine damnation upon WCG unless HWA was 'resurrected' after his heart attack to bring WCG 'back on track'. In reality HWA used this teaching to try to alienate his wife, Ramona Armstrong (nee Martin, nee Crittenden) from him, hoping that she would divorce him. HWA failed and he later divorced her.
  • Geology Reveals: Two Creations - Two Worldwide Floods. Also notable in that it dates the Great Flood to 2369 BC, which assumes that AD 1975 is 6000 after the creation week of Genesis 1.
  • A World Held Captive.  
  • Predestination: Does the Bible Teach It?
  • Does God Exist? 
  • What Do You Mean - The Unpardonable Sin? Here HWA asserts it is highly unlikely to commit it.  
  • Where are Enoch and Elijah? Here Herman Hoeh says Enoch died and his body was taken away by God to be buried in secret and that Elijah was taken up into a whirlwind to be deposited down in Judea where he served as a prophet.
  • What Science Can't Discover about the Human Mind. Here HWA asserts that man has a spirit essence. It seems to me that Robert Kuhn helped develop this idea. Also says dinosaurs did not reproduce.
  • Does God Heal Today? While looking around on the Internet I encountered the website of Harold Reiman, who insisted that doctors and medicines are forbidden by God. He cited this booklet. Later when I discovered Pabco's Web Page I read and indeed HWA condemned doctors and medicines. For a day or two I was distressed by his emotive assertions. However I was somewhat lucky in that I aligned myself with LCG which allows doctors and medicines. I told myself God's Church grows in truth, so what was said then has no relevance now because God's Church (LCG) now allows it. I did not then know that many people have died or had their health permanently impaired as a direct result of what is taught in this booklet. HWA got this teaching from the Jehovah's Witnesses, who were forbidden to use vaccines from around 1920 till 1952. Surely the most shameful legacy left behind by HWA. Alas, some COGs continue to spread this anti-medicine superstition.
  •  The Plain Truth About Healing. The 1970s update of HWA's anti-medicine superstition, made as part of HWA's drive to purge the reformers of the 1970s in order to secure his leadership over WCG members.
I have also read:
  • They Didn't Believe What He Said. Here HWA reduces all the problems of the world to Genesis 3. It implies one should always listen to HWA.
  • If You Had Lived at the Time of Christ. Here HWA asserts that if you presently believe in what WCG is teaching now, you would have believed Christ when he walked upon the Earth if you lived back then. I was greatly flattered when I read this article. Why would anyone care? I am alive today. I did not live then and it is irrelevant what I would have done then because I live today, not then.
But I read those at another COG archive website.

Most of the writings stored here are writings produced by HWA's WCG, but there are a few eclectic other writings hidden within this archive.
  • True Womanhood. This booklet was actually written by Roderick C. Meredith, but for whatever reason the author is not named here. Bob Thiel does the same thing on his archive of old WCG's writings.
  • There is also the following article by Frank W. Nelte. Exactly What is Real Repentance? There used to be several articles by Frank W. Nelte in this website but they now appear to be gone except this one. I often wondered who this man was.
  • There is also a list of sermons by HWA, Keith Brittain, David Hulme and Brian Orchard.
  • The Nicolaitans. An article by J. H. Allen, who wrote Judah's Scepter and Joseph's Birthright, the book HWA plagiarized British Israelism from. The article identifies the Nicolaitans with clerics wishing to seize power over their followers.
There are also some non-COG articles.
  • The Land is Sacred to Us. A mournful lament at how Native Americans were being cast out of their land and shipped into reservations for the convenience of white men.
Beyond that there are a miscellaneous bunch of links to various non-COG web sites which I will not go into.

Outside of the COGs not many people understand the intricacies of Armstrongism. It is in the hope of making matters regarding Armstrongism more clear that I am writing this blog. Having experienced what I have within Armstrongism I feel it is my duty to tell what I know about it.

So that place is where I learned HWA's teachings from the man himself.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

A Tragic Report Regarding RCG

Just saw this horrifying report from Banned by HWA.

Restored Church of God Abuse Contributes To Suicide

The following is highlighted at Banned by HWA.
I have had several dear dear friends completely ruined by this church. One eventually committed suicide because they had nothing at the end. The church took everything from them, demanded more and provided no support, no help, no love, and was only interested in deconstructing them and turning them into something I could not even recognize any more. One dear sweet lady is now convinced that she betrayed God and is just a tortured soul who will likely never again know any sort of hope or peace with God. 
This tragic testimony is from a comment at Networks of Doom, which was posted June 20.

At present it is impossible to know what precisely happened but it must be said that Armstrongism has always left behind a trail of ruined lives, not least due to the severe triple tithing impoverishing COG members, neglect of medical treatment due to HWA's anti-medicine superstition, disfellowshipping of ex-members, etc. Sometimes these abuses even lead to death, in this instance suicide. The baneful influence of Armstrongism continues to wreck peoples' lives in striving to maintain their system of exploitation of COG members.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Gerald Waterhouse's Sermon: Get The Point

I have just finished listening to Gerald Waterhouse's sermon at Lufkin, Texas, which he gave on December 1, 1979. Get The Point.

Here are some notes I took as I was listening to him.

It must be said that he often speaks in a confusing manner. Alas, that may be reflected in the notes I made.

I found his sermon quite educational, though not in the way Gerald Waterhouse intended.

Hat tip Banned by HWA.

Criticizing HWA is Forbidden

He spends about the first 37 minutes condemning any attempt to criticize HWA, saying such acts are rebellious against God, and one can only approach God through HWA, it is impossible to bypass him to get to God.

God more concerned about HWA than Elisha. (3 minutes.)

HWA has a straight back into to write efficiently and prolifically. (8 minutes.)

God gets upset if people say (HWA's) God is limited in his power and abilities. (11 minutes.)

I don't think it's God's will means I have no faith in God. (12 minutes.)

God can give 969 years to HWA if he wishes. (12 minutes.)

Human brains are as pathetic as peanuts. (14 minutes.)

God's work succeed because (HWA's) God makes the decisions. If humans thought for themselves it would fail because people are less than nothing compared to (HWA's) God. (17 minutes.)

People telling how the church should operate is the most ridiculous thing in the world. Deserves to be zapped by (HWA's) God but it is only through his self control such does not happen. (18 minutes.)

Been around the world ten times. (20 minutes.)

Denigrates people depending on medical science for healing HWA. (21 minutes.)

Mocks people saying Stanley Rader is head of the church. Condemns people listening to rumors. (22 minutes.)

Don't listen to anything unless HWA said it. Accuse Garner Ted Armstrong of being unworthy of submission. (23)

Mentions counseling with a woman whose father had left WCG. (24)

Bible written primarily for Philadelphian Christians (followers of HWA). "Laodiceans will die at the onset" of the Great Tribulation. (24-25)

Cites 1974 mass defection and uses Numbers 16 to say no one can defy HWA. (25-26)

Mentions discussion with C. Wayne Cole. Says he did not want to criticize HWA should he remarry. Once HWA did remarry mentions that some disagreed. Issue of previous restrictions on Divorce and Remarriage left unmentioned. States Moses also married another woman other than his wife but to speak against it is to defy God. Cites Numbers 12 and God's rebuke of Miriam and Aaron to say a WCG member must not criticize HWA. (26-27)

Was in Midland, Texas, when Receivership began. (27)

Says God would never approve of the Receivership. Denigrates the State of California's investigation of improperly kept records. (28)

Mentions sermon in 1960 in Australia. Says God kills critics. Calls it teaching government in God's Church. (29-30)

If HWA approached you, put tithes and offerings in a wheel barrow, took up the Sydney Harbor Bridge, then burn it, you have no right to criticize him. You must pray for more faith. (31)

Government is always top down. It is impossible to bypass HWA. He is the channel God is working through. (32-33)

People taking matters in their own hands is forbidden. (34)

Cites 1972 discussion with someone who has now left. Complains that if HWA continue to focus so much on visiting world leaders, thinking he is fulfilling some sort of commission when he is not, WCG will fold in six months. He did not say Mr. in regards to HWA, Gerald Waterhouse complains.

Even HWA could not stop this work. Even all the nations of the world could not stop this work. It is fighting God. (35)

We must trust Christ to solve problems. Do not contradict HWA. We got to do something about it. (36)

Shouts that no one has any right to criticize HWA. (37)

Only God allowed to correct HWA. Any one correcting HWA is insulting God. (37)

Describes people who used to be in witchcraft and were in the Illuminati and the "whitchcraft system". People involved in witchcraft pray to Lucifer. Rock singers are involved in Satanic witchcraft, such as KISS, and pray to Lucifer.. (38)

The beat in the music stirs up rebellion. (39)

11 people killed in rock music. There will be no rock music in the World Tomorrow. (39)

The US Justice System is Inherently Unjust

Here he begins to talk for about twenty minutes that there is no justice in the world today. How dare the unjust justice system of the USA investigates us when it is so perverted and unjust, he seems to be saying.

Condemns the Supreme Court, Congressmen and Senators. Dirty, rotten Supreme Court for preventing parents from forbidding children in using birth control. (40)

Children can sue parents for spanking. Shouts. (41)

Rader will prepare court case to stop Supreme Court. (41)

They are not justices. They are crackpot politicians. (42)

Supreme Court portrayed as morally depraved. Will not listen to the truth even if they presented the simple truth. (43)

Claims America is being besieged by enemies because America is unwilling to use their power.

Give the Communists what they desire. (47)

"Very soon" America will be conquered and enslaved. (48)

Says Satan behind the Receivership and God will use this trap as a tool of God to demonstrate God's power and show justice and righteousness to the world. (48-49)

Says his brother had his house broken in. (49)

Says the District Attorney lets the criminal goes after police found him. (50)

Complains of being told to use lower wattage light bulbs, what about the many Christmas lights celebrating Nimrod's birthday. (51)

Christmas condemned as causing lots of electric waste. (52)

Criminal system lets mafia networks off lightly, but gets punished for speeding. (52)

Mentions incident in late 1975 was in Minnesota during Fall Holy Days.

Mentions getting pulled over by a police officer. Nearby drunks are celebrating at a bar but police are no where to be seen. (54)

Accuses police officers of having quotas for issuing speeding tickets. (55)

"This rotten stinking world is not worth saving." (56)

Glorifies HWA as the instrument to reconcile humanity to God today. More valuable than all the leaders on Earth. (57)

God allows tests in regards to money to test people. Who would put money as more important then submitting to God? (58)

No words to describe the potential HWA has revealed to us. (59)

Maybe 70 or 80 billion people will be resurrected in Great White Judgement.

Satan is conducting smear campaign to denigrate HWA the Apostle. (59-60)

One hour.

Denigrates women wishing to pursue paid employment as falling for the deceptive wiles of Satan. (1)

Women who gets jobs will leave their husbands and the church. (1)

They do not know the world is rotten and not worth pursuing. (2)

Leaving the church is filthy to God. (2-3)

"The Devil, the great critic."

God is "Conquering the world." Reconciliation too Protestant a word. (3)

Comparing WCG to worldly churches is Satan inspired. (4-5)

Will fill the world with millions of churches of God. Hundreds of thousands of Ambassador Colleges. (6)

Radio and TV stations from every Ambassador College. (7)

All literature will be published by Christ. HWA has hundreds and thousands of books waiting to be written. (7)

All recreation and culture will be controlled. (7-8)

Uses Acts 5 to claim that HWA's leadership must to unquestioningly followed.

There has been no growth for thirty years. Blames "unbelievers" within WCG and says God restrained WCG's growth to prevent new members from getting confused by the "unbelievers" within WCG. (10)

Mocks people who say HWA is not in control of WCG and that he is using church money improperly. (10)

All doctrinal decisions made through HWA. (11-12)

Once the ministers unquestioningly follow HWA's direction membership growth will be restored.

Prospective members will be so impressed that everyone speaks the same thing that they will enthusiastically embrace WCG and sacrificially fund it. "I'll give everything's I've got." (12)

Lots of things will be done with these tithes, such as preparing Petra. (12)

WCG Members Fleeing to Petra

Here he begins to describe how WCG members will flee to Petra for the next twenty minutes.

We will buy a fleet of planes to go to Petra. We may go to Jerusalem where HWA knows the mayor. (12-13)

(Petra is in Jordan. Not Israel. I know the borders changed a bit in 1967, but Petra is still in Jordan.)

Let's not go to Iran. (13)

We have to buy a lot of things for Petra. Store them in caves. (13)

Seems to admit having a hoarding tendency. (13-14)

May have to take 300,000 people to Jerusalem. It is an organizational miracle. (15)

Pray for the weather to not interfere. (15)

HWA will tell you where to pitch your tents. (16)

White ruled South Africa will conquer Africa for Europe. Never heard that story before. (17)

WCG members will be the only ones not submitting to the Beast Power which is led by Satan. (17)

We know Satan is not God. (18)

God will lead HWA to Jerusalem. European intelligence will monitor WCG planes flying in utter bafflement. (19)

God will use this to humiliate the Pope, who will have moved to Jerusalem then, as WCG members flee to Petra via Jerusalem. (20)

WCG members will move via Tekoa on the way to Petra. Jokes it sounds like tea. WCG members will flee away from the pursuing European army. (23)

Old women and nursing mothers will miraculously outrun fit European soldiers. (24)

Elijah could run 15 second mile, faster than horses, because God miraculously made this possible. (24)

We will be surrounded by protecting angels. (26)

We will flee through the opening into Petra. God will make the earth swallow the soldiers and topple the surrounding rock face thus isolating WCG members within Petra, safe from European Beast Power. (27)

No Laodicean era. They can disagree with Philadelphians until WCG members flee to Petra. Satan will go after Laodiceans after Philadelphians are safe in Petra. (27-29)

Testimony of Jesus Christ is the work HWA is doing in preaching to the world. He shouts. (29)

HWA went to China the other day. God is speaking through his Apostle to the Chinese people. (29)

Punishment of the Laodiceans for Defying HWA

Laodicean attitude. Laodiceans need to learn they must accept HWA as leader to be right with God. You must accept HWA as leader or else you will never be accepted into the God Family. He shouts. Not my choice, it is God's. (30-32)

I recall Carla Powers mentioned how as a child she would never stray too far from home lest she miss the order to flee to Petra. I can picture that situation a lot better now.

We were placed under HWA. HWA was not placed over us. (Logic fail.) (32)

Rejecting HWA's authority is rejecting God. Such persons will be shocked when the see that the Philadelphians flee to Petra. It is only when they repent during the Great Tribulation that they become the Laodicean era. (33-34)

Their witness of persecution to show the world the truth.

Anyone who does not worship the Beast will be killed. (35)

Laodiceans will have to make their decision immediately, not six months or a year later. They will repent and say I do not believe in the Pope. Satan and his demons will incite the Europeans into a frenzy to destroy the Laodiceans. To fulfill the Pope's vision of peace the Europeans will create the European Empire. (36-37)

Franz Josef Strauss will be the military dictator of Europe. (37)

The Laodiceans will speak up and oppose the Pope. He shouts. (38)

Europeans will behead Laodiceans. (39)

Laodiceans will proclaim that HWA is God's man to the triumphant Europeans. (39)

The beheading of Laodiceans will shock some of the Europeans. (40)

Every time the heart beats, blood squirts. Europeans will be traumatized and begin to wonder why they are fighting HWA's followers. (41)

Laodiceans' witness and mass murder is necessary to make Europeans aware of WCG members in Petra and of HWA. (42-43)

When the Laodiceans die in the Great Tribulation proclaiming the words of HWA it will prove to God that they have repented and submitted to HWA's authority. (44)

Submitting to HWA proves they will rule properly in the World Tomorrow. (45)

Establishment of the World Tomorrow

At this point Gerald Waterhouse focuses on describing the glory of the first resurrection at the return of Christ.

He shouts that it was necessary for God to send the truth through HWA, Philadelphians and Laodiceans. (45)

HWA needs to warn the French not to betray Joseph (America and Britain) into slavery. (47)

HWA is identified as one of the Two Witnesses. HWA will be killed in Jerusalem. The Pope will use HWA's death to proclaim himself that he is God. (48)

Resurrection of the Two Witnesses identified as the moment of the first resurrection at the return of Christ.

The resurrected HWA will explain who will fulfill the positions within God's government as god beings. Cites Follows HWA's teachings in The Wonderful World Tomorrow. (50)

Jokes around how the biblical Job is pronounced differently from the word job. (51)

Family of God will be administratively divided and members will be assigned their positions of authority. It will run as a corporation. (52-3)

Claims HWA will restore all things, implying HWA will live until fulfilling the role of Two Witnesses. (54-5)

HWA has "substantial calling". (55)

Shouts that God will proclaim that HWA was his witness. (56)

Jokes with Abel's name, punning it with able. (56-7)

Talks of how pre-Exodus patriarchs never read the Bible in order to claim WCG members has greater understanding then pre-Exodus biblical heroes. (57)

Talks of how God will have to explain to the ancient biblical patriarchs about what is happening during the return of Christ. (58)

Mocks how Protestants focus on other topics. (59)

Mocks Billy Graham for not concluding the Bible taught what HWA said it says. "Missing it by a thousand spiritual miles." (2:00:00)

Two hours.

The ancient resurrected saints will be educated what is happening. (1)

The European system will be destroyed by God. He shouts. (2)

Christ will make sure TV cameras are viewing what is happening. (2)

Christ will shout that HWA is his servant. He shouts. Says anyone who criticize HWA is criticizing God. (3)

He shouts. (3-4)

People are leaving because they criticize HWA which is defined as criticizing God. (4-5)

Won't be off by a billionth of a degree in executing God's instructions. (5)

He shouts. He says God will destroy the Beast ands the final Pope in front of the world's TV cameras to prove the Pope is not God. (6)

No one has any right to criticize HWA. It is an act against God. He shouts. (7)

Mocks people who wish to reform WCG. He mockingly says they are trying to be more righteous than God. WCG members have no right to "play detective". (8-9)

Says only people who have learned to follow God can enter the God Family. (9-10)

Bible is written in riddles. Only those with God's spirit can understand it. (11)

Mockingly speaks gibberish. (11)

HWA needed to speak plainly. Needed talent for speaking and salesmanship. (12)

Mocks Protestant Christianity. (12)

We will be so loyal when we are ordered we will say Yes, Sir. (14)

All members of the God Family must be absolutely conquered by God. (15)

Religion will be reformed in the World Tomorrow. (15)

America and Britain must receive the most developed education. (16)

God will not let HWA stay dead. (16)

Says God has promised HWA to be alive until Great Tribulation. (17)

Says he is certain HWA will stay alive. (17-8)

If attitude is wrong he is simply kicked out because WCG is more important because they shall lead the World Tomorrow. (19)

Says Moses led to Petra. HWA will lead WCG members to Petra as well. HWA will only be dead for three and a half days. (20)

Esau sold the whole world for a bowl of soup. Says God denied him repentance for making such a stupid decision. (21-2)

Book of Revelation Cited to Justify Leadership of HWA

At this point Gerald Waterhouse then talks about the Book of Revealation in order to claim that HWA is spoken of in it and this is used to justify HWA's authority. 

Only HWA could fulfill four prophecies mentioned in Revelation. (22)

Message of Revelation about today and end times events. (23)

Says John identified the Philadelphian era will reveal the message before the Great Tribulation. (25)

First Israelites, then Gentiles, will be incorporated within God's World Tomorrow. (27)

At second coming all humanity will learn the truth. (28)

HWA is already spiritually dead so he will never deviate from God's will. (30)

Says HWA says he is still fulfilling the role of Zarubbabel. (30)

Says HWA was divinely strengthened by God when he talked in front of a Feast crowd. (31)

God took least qualified to be the leaders of the World Tomorrow. He shouts. (33)

Says HWA is to prophesy again. HWA will reach the world twice. (34)

Says we thought the work would end in 1972. Obliquely discusses the prophetic failure of 1972. (35)

Says Revelation predicted HWA's resurrection in 1977. (36-7)

HWA needed to die in 1977 in order to shock him into dealing with Garner Ted Armstrong. (37)

HWA needed to rise and measure the Temple of God, that is, purge WCG of undesirable members. (37-8)

Talks of HWA's dualism (type and anti-type). (39)

Israelite Tabernacle merely a type of the Church. (39)

Outer court is said to represent the Gentiles. (40)

Says anyone refusing to follow HWA after his recovery from a heart attack, are to be treated as Gentiles and have no access to God. They are cut off from God. They might repent during the Great Tribulation, but they are spiritually blinded and will not listen to the correct advice of Philadelphian Christians. So they are left alone. (41-4)

HWA reaches to world twice. First till 1972. Second is afterwards. (46)

After 1977 heart attack  HWA is to judge which WCG members are to come to Petra, and which will not. (47-8)

He shouts. (48)

He shouts that HWA has judged "liberals" are unworthy of Petra hence why they are no longer in WCG. (49)

Those who stay loyal to HWA are worthy of Petra. Others must be beheaded to prove they are loyal to HWA's God. (50)

Mentions how he told WCG members to stay loyal to HWA during the mass defection of 1974. (51)

WCG members must stay loyal to HWA. (52)

God Family must never contradict God when they are resurrected God beings. (55)

WCG members who leave strengthen those who stay, strengthening their resolve to stay with HWA's WCG. (56)

Laodiceans must confess that HWA was the one who began the true faith in the modern era. (57-8)

HWA must be acknowledged as the one who began the creation of God Beings. (58-9)

Says Revelation predicts that Laodiceans will be beheaded by the European Beast Power. (59-3:00:00)

Three hours.

Says HWA declared that intellectualism is the cancer within WCG. (3:00:00)

Laodiceans martyrs must have died witnessing for HWA. (1)

Laodiceans must be martyred to witness to Europeans and point to the Two Witnesses, one of whom is HWA. (2)

Laodiceans must acknowledge HWA as God's man. (3)

Ministers in Tucson who were disrespectful with HWA are now gone, out of WCG. (3-4)

You must trust God through his Apostle, HWA. (5)

His sermon finally ends.

In a nutshell Gerald Waterhouse spent over three hours telling WCG members that they have no right to criticize HWA and must stay loyal to him despite the whirlpool of scandal HWA had led WCG into, not least a forced receivership by the State of California. If a WCG member is not loyal to HWA and continue to follow him he will be cast out of WCG and witness in a most costly fashion to the Europeans.

New South Wales Court Orders Juvenile Jehovah's Witness to Take Blood Transfusion

Religious boy fights court for right to refuse blood transfusion.

Since around 1945 the Watchtower Society has ordered its followers, the Jehovah's Witnesses, to refuse blood transfusions or else (as the Jehovah's) be shunned and cast out of the only organization that is connected to God and the only organization that can save its followers from perishing in the Great Tribulation.

Many Jehovah's Witnesses have died because of this tragic blood transfusion ban.

Hat tip Cult News Network.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Herbert W. Armstrong's Error Regarding the Feast

Very soon the Feast of Tabernacles will occur and the COGs will observe them by gathering themselves together to the various Feast sites and fellowship with one another and listen to sermons for eight days as the entire COG from all over the world unite together for eight days of fellowship and communion with each other.

But there is a problem with their observe of the Feast of Tabernacles.

Notice Leviticus 23:40-43:
And ye shall keep it a feast unto the Lord seven days in the year. It shall be a statute for ever in your generations: ye shall celebrate it in the seventh month. Ye shall dwell in booths seven days; all that are Israelites born shall dwell in booths: That your generations may know that I made the children of Israel to dwell in booths, when I brought them out of the land of Egypt: I am the Lord your God.
And that is exactly what the Jews do today.

Look at how the Jews observe this day. They do it by building booths, called sukkah (sukkot plural) in the Hebrew language, within their houses or somewhere on their property.

Take a look at how the Jews observe the Feast of Tabernacles and the booths they observe it in.

They do not go around gathering themselves up together to assemble to listen for eight days to their Rabbis teaching the religion to them, instead they have fun and socialize with each other while staying at their own places or visiting their friends' places.

Does Leviticus say, Assemble yourselves together in a large warehouse far away from the world and go on vacation for eight days while you listen to my priests explaining the mysteries of the universe to you that you have already been hearing all year?

HWA has willfully misunderstood what this Feast is about. Instead of getting his followers to rejoice and celebrate with each other by meeting together in booths (sukkot) as seen above, in their own places, he exploited the peoples' misunderstanding and ignorance of this feast to get the COG members to assemble themselves together in a hotel, warehouse, campus, or some other such place in order to indoctrinate them into his syncretic religion.

Recently I had the honor of reading Carla Powers' book, Matches in the Gas Tank. She well described how the Feast was a terrible burden as her family had to drop everything from their regular lives and take a compulsory eight day vacation by order of HWA.

The Feast is designed to isolate COG members from society. It makes keeping a job that much harder for the COG members as they try to take eight days off. Kids are forced to take several days off from their education at school. Going to the Feast likely forces COG members to sacrifice by not using their hard earned money to go somewhere else. Instead they must go where the minister orders them to go.

They have no idea that they are not following God, but instead are following a man made tradition invented by one Herbert W. Armstrong.

Instead of observing the Feast as it is actually described in Leviticus and how the Jews observe it, HWA devised his own man made tradition in order to indoctrinate his followers.

The truth is HWA invented this man made custom of assembling together to hold a great feast in which every member is ordered to attend. The COGs think they are following God's law. In fact they are following a tradition invented by HWA.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Interview Regarding Shunning (Disfellowshipment)

The Silence of Shunning: A Conversation with Kipling William

Here is a fascinating discussion about shunning with Kipling William. Although he is specifically talking about being shunned at the workplace his discussion is all too relevant to those of us involved with the COGs, which traditionally "disfellowshipped" unwanted members and made church members shun them. This vicious practice continues in some of the more nasty COGs.

Here is a part of the interview.
But the most important thing is to maintain bonds with people. “Social support, I think, is probably the number one thing; you don’t need to have a ton of friends . . . what you really need is one or two people. . . just form strong social bonds somewhere and then you can distance yourself [from the ostracizers] a little bit, think of the workplace as a sociological experience . . . it distances you a little bit from the pain and allows you to be more analytical about it. . . it’s not going to get rid of the ostracism; it’s still going to be awful to be around them at work, but it gives you something to look forward to.”

And that’s something that targets of shunning need to remember. No matter how awful it is, there is always something to look forward to, and that is the world beyond the ostracizers. Make no mistake, shunning is not a noble act. It is an act of aggression, and can be every bit as damaging, if not deadly, to the person who is targeted—and it damages those who engage in shunning, because the longer they maintain it, the harder it is to end it. So if you’ve been a member of the crowd shunning a person who failed to please your leader, rethink your “non-actions” and reach out to the person you’ve erased and are so painfully hurting. And if you are a person who has been shunned, don’t turn to your ostracizers for approval. Move on to a kinder, gentler environment, where you are valued, and treated with the humanity you deserve.
Examples of Roderick C. Meredith disfellowshipping WCG members, thus committing this "act of aggression" which "can be ... damaging, if not deadly, to the person who is targeted" may be seen
  • here (This one is particularly nasty as Meredith order ministers to "disfellowship any who consort with GTA or any of his fellows."),
These occurred while he was head of WCG's ministry in January-August 1979.

Another example of disfellowshipping within WCG while Meredith was head of the ministry may be seen here.

Hat tip Cult News Network.

Jehovah's Witness Usher Charged with Pedophiliac Sexual Abuse, Pleads No Contest

Sun Valley Jehovah’s Witness church usher pleads no contest to sex acts with underage boys.

Marcelo Lozano, who was a Jehovah's Witness usher, is in jail and is facing sexual abuse charges. 
Marcelo Lozano, 34, of Sun Valley, pleaded no contest to two counts of continuous sexual abuse and one count of oral copulation of a person under 14.

He is facing 30 years in state prison when he is sentenced Oct. 8 by Van Nuys Superior Court Judge Leslie Dunn.
HWA took a lot of ideas from the Jehovah's Witnesses, including his anti-medicine superstition. Also the Jehovah's Witnesses, like the COGs, are descended from the Millerites of the 1830s and 1840s who predicted Christ would return in 1844.

Hat tip Cult News Network.

What Can I Do If My Friend Joined a Cult?

I’m convinced my friend has joined a cult. What can I do?

Some advice on what to do with a friend who has joined a cult.

Hat tip Cult News Network.

Robert Kuhn Mentioned in Meredith's Article

In the latest Tomorrow's World magazine Roderick C. Meredith has written an article, Is This China's Century? The article happens to mention Robert Kuhn, however Meredith makes no mention of the fact that Kuhn used to be one of the main leaders of WCG in the 1970s.
China’s senior leader, Xi Jinpeng, now talks of the “Two 100s”—the goal of making the nation’s entire vast population “moderately well off” by 2020, the 100th anniversary of the Chinese Communist Party, and the goal of making China a fully modernized and developed nation by 2049, the 100th anniversary of the People’s Republic of China. As China expert Robert Lawrence Kuhn puts it, Xi’s vision of the “Chinese Dream” has four parts: “Strong China (economically, politically, diplomatically, scientifically, militarily); Civilized China (equity and fairness, rich culture, high morals); Harmonious China (amity among social classes); Beautiful China (healthy environment, low pollution)” (“Xi Jinping’s Chinese Dream,” New York Times, June 4, 2013). 
(Note: I added in the link in the quote above.)

I find it odd that Roderick C. Meredith should quote Robert Kuhn and not acknowledge the vital role he played in running WCG in the 1970s.

This gets up my nose because it reminds me again how so often these COG leaders will mention something obliquely, so that those unaware of what happened are left unaware of the full story. Often it is necessary to go to a non-COG source to learn what really happened.

Interview on False Memories

Saw this fascinating interview with Elizabeth Loftus regarding false memories.

Here's a sample of the interview:
[Alison George]: Do you think it's not possible to repress memories of traumatic events?

[Elizabeth Loftus]: It is possible not to think about something for a long time, even something unpleasant that happened to you. But what's been claimed in these repressed-memory cases is something, by definition, that's too extreme to be explained by ordinary forgetting and remembering. They're saying that in order to go on in life, you had to wall off this memory, because it would be too painful to live with. Then finally you go into therapy and crack through the repression barrier and out comes this pristine memory. But there really is no credible scientific support for that notion.
AG: Is it the power of suggestion from a therapist that creates these "memories," then?

EL: Yes, a lot of the cases involve suggestive psychotherapy. But you don't absolutely need the therapy. You can get suggestion from the culture and the environment, like when somebody turns on Oprah and sees one of these repressed-memory therapists talking, then believes this has happened to them.
I encountered this idea of repressed memories before, but recently I have encountered several stories that have led me to suspect that they can are false and unreliable, and it is remarkably easy to conjure up a false memory.

Hat tip Cult News Network.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Overview of the Last Two Tomorrow's World Magazines

Here is an overview of some of the articles published in the two issues of LCG's recruitment magazine, Tomorrow's World.

July-August 2013:

The Preface is written by Richard Ames.

Meredith is back condemning homosexuality again. His article has a chart on page 6 saying homosexual intercourse reduces your lifespan by twenty years and is more harmful to your physical health then obesity, smoking tobacco, alcoholism, or addiction to heroin.

Building on that theme James Ginn writes a little article bewailing the acceptance gays have in Canada and claiming this will lead to national disgrace and the breaking of its pride.

Richard Ames promises that you can be a God being in the God Family in the afterlife if you just follow LCG's rules.

Dexter Wakefield has an article about Machiavelli's book, The Prince.

John Meakin writes about Margaret Thatcher.

September-October 2013:

Wow! Meredith's really ticked off at the gays at the moment. His preface is once again about condemning homosexuality, and Atheists being too pushy for his liking. As evidence he cites an article from a Russian newspaper which states "The US is broke". Then where is President Obama getting the money to threaten to attack Assad's murderous regime? What nonsense.

He also has an article about China. Although LCG follows HWA's dogma that Europe will destroy America every now and then LCG will publish an article insinuating that China is a threat to the US and telling LCG members to be afraid of China.

Intriguingly he mentions Robert Kuhn in this article, quoting an article of his. The unsuspecting reader will have no idea that Robert Kuhn used to be an extremely important official within HWA's WCG. I am also under the impression that he was the man who devised the doctrine of the spirit in man, a supposed spiritual essence said to empower the human brain to operate at a level of magnitude greater than those of animals. What a way to treat a former colleague, Meredith. 

Rod McNair has an article about pornography and calls for LCG members to stay away from such things. LCG so loves talking about the kinds of sex one is not supposed to do.

Wallace Smith asks if commemorating the International Day of Peace can make a difference in our suffering world?

Many things cannot be known but one thing I do know is the International Day of Peace will make far more difference to the world than paying LCG three tithes and paying it to indoctrinate other people to make up for the many members within LCG who will leave that bastion of tyranny.

Stuart Wachowicz has an article on beavers praising their industriousness.

Sheldon Monson also writes about learning from mistakes.

Adam West has an article about Pompeii and insisting that Britain will endure a catastrophe such as that. It is your typical fear inducing false prophecy that LCG loves to propagate among the unsuspecting.

Douglas Winnail writes about the EU claiming it will soon turn into a Beast power to destroy America. He also speculates that a monarch might assume power within Europe and mentions the late Otto von Hapsburg and Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg. How much like their former devote Bob Thiel.

These magazines are yet another regurgitation of HWA's destructive and fear inducing doctrines.

PCG's Mark Nash Plays Book Editor

PCG's Mark Nash once wrote an article about Harry Potter entitled, What is it about Harry? in the December 2001, Philadelphia Trumpet.

One cannot help but observe Mark Nash's sensitivity to having authority, including we may assume his own, is allegedly challenged and demeaned in fiction, specifically in the stories of Harry Potter.
The weakness and ineptitude of adults is a second theme presented by this movie that should be a cause of concern to parents. The main character, an 11-year-old, overcomes an evil adult villain when the other adults could not. Throughout the story, the children are the heroes while the adults are often presented as less brave, less skilled and ineffective. Even when the children break clear rules established by the adults, they are rewarded rather than corrected. 
Mark Nash completely misses the point.

Writers love conflict within their stories. Having the hero of the story having conflicts with those above him in authority is an easy way to produce tension in a story.

The writers are not encouraging insubordination among children. They are just trying to make their stories exciting. Mark Nash should be embarrassed that he can not understand that.

Can you imagine what a story by Mark Nash would read? I imagine it would go something like this:
Harry Potter saw something wrong was going on.

He could have done something himself.

He told an adult about.
The adults took care of it.

The End.
Why would anyone part with their hard earned money to read a story like that?

Another reason why Mark Nash thinks Harry Potter is a bad influence on children is that, apparently, if kids learn about the occult they might suddenly start murdering people!
Stories and movies of fantasy pose many potential dangers to children. They may create interest in occult subjects such as ouija boards, tarot cards, crystal balls or magic spells—or may lead to interest in Wicca, wizardry or demonism. Many terrible acts have been committed by children with demonic interests. These youngsters did not start out killing people. They started with curiosity in the occult, the same type of curiosity the viewers and readers of Harry Potter may develop.
What is he talking about? Could you provide an example please? How many "terrible acts [that] have been committed by children with demonic interests" have happened? Can't you at least estimate the number?

I am no fan of the occult, I will admit, but to call them murderers? I don't know what to say to that.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

HWA, Micah 5 and Problematic Facts

One scripture HWA loved using to prove his unfounded British Israelism beliefs (which he plagiarized) is Micah 5:7-15.

Here is how HWA described it in the 1980 edition of The United States and Great Britain in Prophecy, Chapter 14.
The Tremendous Prophecy of Micah

An important additional proof of modern Israel's identity is found in a fantastic, detailed and most specific prophecy found in Micah 5:7-15. It is speaking specifically about the "remnant" of Israel -- modern Israel today -- wherever it is. It describes the wealth, the beneficent dominance among nations, and then the coming downfall of the American and British Commonwealth peoples in detail!

Notice: "And the remnant of Jacob shall be in the midst of many people [nations] as a dew from the Lord, as the showers upon the grass, that tarrieth not for man, nor waiteth for the sons of men" (verse 7). Remember that dew and showers are absolutely necessary to agricultural productivity and are a symbol of national BLESSING and WEALTH from God.

Continue: "And the remnant of Jacob shall be among the Gentiles in the midst of many people as a lion among the beasts of the forest, as a young lion among the flocks of sheep: who, if he go through, both treadeth down, and teareth in pieces, and none can deliver" (verse 8).

Again, this symbolism describes the last generation of Israel as a GREAT POWER -- as a lion among the other nations of the earth.

"Thine hand shall be lifted up upon thine adversaries, and all thine enemies shall be cut off" (verse 9). They WERE cut off from the beginning of God's birthright blessing on America and Britain starting about 1803, through the First World War, the Second World War, until the turning point of the Korean War at the end of 1950.

Since that time, however, these blessings are surely being taken away -- and neither America nor Britain has come out on top in any major skirmish since that time!

So this prophecy shows that at the very time we were receiving God's blessings, we were a tremendous BLESSING to the other nations of the earth -- for it is our peoples who have rescued the other nations of the world time and again through the Marshall Plan, the Point Four program, the Alliance for Progress, the hundreds of millions of bushels of wheat for India and other starving nations, etc. The Hoover Program saved up vast food supplies after World War I. It saved millions in other nations from starvation!

Anciently Joseph saved up the wheat and food and made it available to others. MODERN Joseph did also. BUT -- we are stiff- necked and rebellious toward God and His law, while our ancient forefather Joseph served and obeyed God with a whole heart.

It is our peoples who have been like a "lion" among the other nations of the earth -- preserving in two great world wars the peace of the world and stability for all human life on this planet!

Sudden Destruction

Yet, in this detailed prophecy, God says: "And it shall come to pass IN THAT DAY, saith the Lord, that I will cut off thy horses" ["war-horses," Moffatt translation] -- tanks, ships, rockets -- "out of the midst of thee, and I will destroy thy chariots: and I will cut off the cities [by hydrogen bombs?] of thy land, and throw down all thy strong holds" (verses 10-11).

God says He will do this! GOD determines the outcome of wars (Ps. 33:10-19).

How plain can you get? Here God identifies the GREAT peoples of the earth who are the most wealthy and beneficent, the most POWERFUL -- yet at the very time their power reaches its zenith, He suddenly "breaks" the pride of their power (see Leviticus 26:19), cuts off their implements of war and destroys their cities! Why?

Because, as the prophet continues to explain, we have too much "witchcraft" and too many "soothsayers" -- false ministers -- in our lands who refuse to preach with authority the commandments and ways of the living God!

Therefore, God will punish and destroy us -- unless we repent -- just before and leading up to the utter destruction to come "upon the heathen" (verse 15), which will take place at the very END of this age and at the second return of Jesus Christ as King of kings!

There is no other people that even remotely fulfills this great prophecy! But the American and British Commonwealth peoples fulfill it precisely!

As the "pride of our power" continues to be BROKEN, as the British continue to lose their foreign sea gates and possessions around the earth, as America signs away ownership of the Panama Canal -- control over this vital sea gate -- as our gold supply drains away from this nation, weather upsets increase, this focal prophecy alone represents giant PROOF as to where the modern "remnant" of the peoples of Israel resides today!
HWA speaks of "the beneficent dominance among nations". He often speaks of how just and righteous America and Britain were in times past, and claims that they are deviating from what made them great.

But was Britain really so good as HWA portrayed?

(Now I am going to mention a few painful historical facts. My point is to demonstrate how limited and flawed HWA's view of history is. I am not trying to do anything else.)

What about the famine in Ireland in 1845-7? Did the unfortunate Irish of that time think Britain was being beneficent when they handled the famine so badly?

What about the famine in India in the 1890s?

What about the coup in Iran in 1953 to prevent the Iranian government from nationalizing oil production? This act deeply disillusioned many Iranians and contributed to the intense hostility towards the US and British governments seen during the revolution of 1979.

Is America really so good as HWA has portrayed?

What about the military coup in Guatemala in 1954 which was initiated because some rich shareholders for United Fruit did not want to let landless peasants settle of unused land they owned. This precipitated a catastrophic period of warfare and strife that would linger on until 1996.

What about the terrible war the US fought in the Philippines in the early 1900s after the US government decided to ignore the widespread demand of the people to govern themselves?

What about the Native Americans who were systematically cast out from their land to make way for the "white men"? How can they view America as a great blessing to the world when it treated them so badly?

What about the African Americans who were shipped into America as slaves, and after being freed were denied the right to be treated as equals and often subject to severe intimidation, even lynchings? It was only in the 1960s, after a long and arduous struggle, that many wicked discriminatory laws and practices oppressing them were abolished.

Now please understand. If you look hard enough at the history of any nation or group of people you find they have some nasty skeletons in their closets as well.

I present these painful facts to question the way HWA portrayed the role of America and Britain in a positive light. His nostalgic portrayal of past American and British societies have blinded many of his followers within the COGs to the painful realities that occurred in those times.

This ignorance only history only further isolates COG members into viewing the world as a scary and irredeemably hostile place, when in reality many "hostile" people are behaving in rational ways and responding to injustices that COG members are ignorant of. 

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Thoughts on Carla Powers' Book, Matches in the Gas Tank

About two weeks ago I read Carla Powers' book about her life within HWA's Radio Church of God, Matches in the Gas Tank. Her website is at

I read through the book in about four days.

It is a very good book. Carla Powers is to be applauded for revealing this painful yet inspiring story to the interested public.

It well exposes how heartless and cruel the legalistic despotic ministers within HWA's group behaved. She describes at length how HWA's restrictive teachings caused her family to be isolated from the surrounding non-COG society. The tragic consequence of living within a high demand group.

Her story describes what the Radio Church of God was like before the turmoil of the 1970s. Many within the COGs, including some writers from LCG and PCG and others, claim that before 1970 all was well within the church led by HWA. One would get the impression that all was fine and dandy. A paradise of righteousness within a confused and sinful world.

That is nonsense. Actually in the 1950s and 1960s HWA's Radio Church of God/WCG was a cesspool of cruel authoritarianism that produced lives painfully restricted and fearful by the dogmas of HWA. Carla Powers' painful yet inspiring story reveals this to be the case. It is an urgent antidote against the selective, self serving nostalgia so many within the COG continue to believe in.

I gladly recommend this book.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Are COG Writings Really Free?

One way many people have joined the COGs is that they were intrigued after being offered free writings from the various COG groups. 

But is distributing free writings really beneficial for the COGs?

The great thing about getting people to pay for things they order is that the assured income for it helps pay for the production of said product. But distributing COG writings for free seems to have the disadvantage that the producer, if he is sending it to a non-tithing potential recruit, is never sure he will get money returned for his expenditure in making the writing.

Having members pay for the production of the COG writings further encourages COG ministers to compensate for this uncertainty by getting members to pay more money to the COG. This problem exacerbates the destructive treatment of members as simply a source of income, as opposed to being members.

So we see actually this practice may exacerbates authoritarian behavior within the COGs.

Is getting the COG members to pay for the production of COG writings really a cost effective way of managing resources?

I do not think it is. I think it exacerbates the tendency among the COGs to view members as simply a source of income and causes them to use the income in an inefficient way.

Getting people to pay for what they order seems to be a more effective way of paying for production costs rather than exploiting COG members by ordering them to pay three tithes to produce the 'free' writings.

(Also the COG writings are not free, because they seek to recruit people into a COG group and order them to pay three tithes and extra offerings. Gaining tithe paying recruits is how the COGs gain their income and do what they do.)

Book On the Struggle Against Violent Islamic Extremist by Other Muslims

Here is a fascinating article from The Economist promoting the book, Your Fatwa Does Nor Apply Here: Untold Stories from the Fight Against Muslim Fundamentalism by Karima Bennoune.

The author is a journalist originating from Algeria. The book sounds most fascinating, and very grim.
Whether by interviewing exiles (Iranians and Somalis in America) or through touring benighted war zones, Ms Bennoune presents similarly harrowing tales from across the Muslim world. She shows that most of the victims of violent fundamentalism are themselves Muslim. Her subjects are people who found dignity and meaning in Islam, often as part of a rich local culture, but who were branded as backsliders or apostates by an invasive species of zealotry.

Readers may pine for more analysis and fewer grisly anecdotes. But Ms Bennoune is clear about some things. The West, she argues, generally underestimates the deviousness and destructiveness of Islamist movements, whether they use bullets, ballot boxes or both. She has no time for Westerners who justify the Muslim Brotherhood and its ilk as valid expressions of an aggrieved culture. Nor can she abide people who see all Muslims as global adversaries, as if a ban on sharia law in the American Midwest would make the world a safer place.
Hat tip Cult News Network.

Encounter with Something

Thursday evening I was walking along my road and saw a crumpled paper in the gutter. I saw the word Bible in it. Curious I picked it up. It was an article insisting that General Allenby had used the Bible, specifically some rules in the Law of Moses, in devising methods of hygiene.

I had no idea what was the source of this article. I suspected it might by from old WCG but this seems not to be the case. Perhaps it was from some British Israelist source. I don't know.

Not wanting this to have any negative effect on any reader who might stumble upon it I promptly placed it in the trash. It was not in a presentable state anyway.

Friday, September 6, 2013

HWA Says Little Book Refers to him (1976)

In 1989 one insignificant WCG minister made a book, Malachi's Message, claiming that he had received a new revelation from God. He used this book to cement his authority among his followers as (for them) the legitimate continuation from HWA, later even forbidding his followers from associating with people in other COGs as part of his 'no contact' policy. (However it is widely suspected that Malachi's Message plagiarized ideas from Jules Dervaes' Letter to Laodicea.)

In time he said that Malachi's Message was in fact the Little Book mentioned in Revelation 10.

There is a problem with this idea.

Herbert W. Armstrong's November 19, 1976 Co-Worker Letter says the Little Book refers to his numerous visits to world leaders.

Here is what HWA speculated was the meaning of Revelation 10.
Could it be possible, after proclaiming the Gospel of THE KINGDOM OF GOD, as well as Ezekiel's warning to the people of Israel, that, beginning January, 1972, when my PRESENT CAMPAIGN of walking through the doors God said He would open (Rev. 3:8) to KINGS, and many NATIONS of DIFFERENT LANGUAGES commenced, that it is the FULFILLMENT OF THIS PROPHECY OF REVELATION 10?



This is punch line, so to speak, of HWA's speculation as to the meaning of Revelation 10.

Others have commented on this co-worker letter before, such as PCG Information.

This is a desperate attempt by HWA to distract WCG members' attention from his disastrous prediction that the Great Tribulation would begin in 1972.

Before 1972 HWA taught that "God's Church" was operating according to two 19 year time cycles. This idea appears to have taken hold within HWA's group around 1953, partly prompted in response to the first broadcast on Radio Luxembourg.

The first time cycle (1934-53) began January 7, 1934 and ended January 7, 1953 and represented "God's Church" attempt to preach to America.

The second time cycle (1953-72) began with the first broadcast on Radio Luxembourg and represented the span of time "God's Church" would have in preaching the truth to the entire world, not just Israel.

It was anticipated that 1972 would witness "God's Church" being rendered unable to preach the message, presumably due to the start of the Great Tribulation and "God's Church" would be miraculously taken to a place of safety, widely thought to be Petra, Jordan.

Of course nothing happened in 1972. In a desperate attempt to breathe new life into this failed doctrine HWA said that the third time cycle represented "God's Church" prophesying again with his visits to world leaders.

HWA tried to say that the end of the second 19 year time cycle in 1972 coincided with his ministry to world leaders. This is not true. HWA started visiting world leaders before January 1972.

Notice the following from HWA's Autobiography, Chapter 75:

October 28, 1970
Dear Fellow Co-Workers: 
returning from Sydney, Australia to Djakarta for my conference with President Suharto, of Indonesia. An appointment had been set, but he was unable to see me until the following day. On that following day I had an appointment with President Marcos of the Philippines at his palace in Manila. I felt it incumbent on me to keep that appointment, and so was unable to wait over in Djakarta.

I had an important meeting with President Marcos. And while in Manila, President Suharto tried personally to reach me by telephone to arrange a meeting the next day. Prior commitments did not allow time to fly back down to Djakarta. Result, I am now scheduled to meet General Suharto the middle of December. 
Bruce Renehan's book, Daughter of Babylon, provides further details on how HWA's visits to world leaders started.
But now that it appeared that such prophecies might fail, a new thrust needed to be emphasized. In 1969 this happened when the German office of the Plain Truth magazine was contacted by the throneless king of Belgium--Leopold III. Leopold had abdicated his throne after World War II because he had been a Nazi sympathizer. He had a love for nature photography and was contacting magazines that might want to use some of his safari photos.

Armstrong was ecstatic. He sought the opportunity to use the king as a liaison to arrange meetings for him with other heads of state. One thing led to another until Armstrong was portrayed to the church as the modern apostle Paul who was travelling the globe "preaching the gospel" to royalty about the soon-coming millennium.

He lectured men like Anwar Sadat, saying patronizingly, "Allah's way was a way of giving." Sadat was cordial and accepted expensive gifts, such as Steuben crystal, from Armstrong. Armstrong was happy because he got to associate with royalty and be seen as a man of destiny to his followers. 
HWA started visiting world leaders before 1972. His analogy fails completely.

It also needs to be mentioned that the wasteful expense of these visits, and the fact he was not preaching the doctrines of Armstrongism to these world leaders, was a major cause for the turmoil of the 1970s

So that is what HWA said the Little Book was about. What egotistical nonsense!