Monday, May 19, 2014

Reading PCG's Booklet, Obadiah

Let us now look through Gerald Flurry's booklet, Obadiah. This booklet was first published in 1996. He later revised it in 2006 as Obadiah: The Most Terrifying Message in the Bible. This reading is from the original 1996 printing, not the current version. (The current version has an original copyright date of 1995, but the older copy says 1996. I will go with 1996.) However they are very similar. You can read the current 2006 version at their website.

Here Flurry teaches that the Laodiceans will be divided into a repentant half (called Jacobite Laodiceans) and an unrepentant half (called Edomite Laodiceans). He says the unrepentant half of the Laodiceans will collaborate with the European Beast Power to murder the repentant Laodiceans.

Elsewhere in his writings Gerald Flurry teaches that half of the Laodiceans will repent of their Laodicean condition (convert to PCG) and be killed in the Great Tribulation. Flurry insists this is the true meaning of the parable of the ten virgins in Matthew 25. But the unrepentant other half will be damned in the lake of fire. In this booklet the unrepentant Laodiceans are labelled Edomite Laodiceans. The repentant Laodiceans are labelled Jacobite Laodiceans

Now when Flurry calls the repentant Laodiceans Jacobite this is not really a compliment but rather seems to insinuate that these people are unconverted until they repent in the Great Tribulation.
When Jacob was converted, His name was changed to Israel. So Jacob represents an unconverted attitude in God’s own Church today. But Esau represents an even worse attitude. God has “INDIGNATION FOR EVER” against him! He was incorrigible. And many of God’s people are becoming that way today! Whatever these Edomite Laodiceans try to build, God says He will tear down. (p. 2.)
So being a Jacobite Laodicean is little to be happy about according to Flurry.
It was prophesied that GOD WOULD SEND A MESSAGE IN THIS END TIME ABOUT EDOM. Where is it?

Turkey is the modern-day nation of Edom. This prophecy may well apply to betrayals of Jacob or Israel by Turkey, but the primary meaning is directed to a spiritual Esau. (p. 3. Pages 3-4 in the current version.)
Where did this idea that Turkey is the modern day continuation of Edom come from? HWA taught this, but where did he get this idea? This is discussed in a previous post.
Ever wondered why HWA identified Turkey as Edom? Among British-Israelites Edom was identified with the Turks. M. M. Eshelman, for example, identified the Turks as Edom in a book published in 1887 ([Michael Barkun, Religion and the Racist Right: The Origin of Christian Identity,] p. 128-9). HWA simply copied this earlier idea.
So we see that the idea that Turkey is Edom was simply just another idea being tossed about within the British Israel movement of the Victorian era that HWA somehow latched onto and used himself.

Also it should be pointed out that the Turks speak a Turkic language totally unrelated to Hebrew or Arabic. Other Turkic languages include Azerbaijani, Uzbek, Kazakh, Uyghur, Turkmen, Tatar and Kyrgyz. Are they all Edomites? If the Turks are really related to Israel as common descendents of Isaac why do they speak a completely unrelated language?

Flurry speculates that Petra could be the place of safety.
Edom “dwelled in the CLEFTS of the rock.” The Gesenius Lexicon defines clefts this way (emphasis mine): “PLACES OF REFUGE IN THE ROCKS (perhaps dwellings CARVED IN THE ROCKS).” If you have ever visited Petra, as I have, you know this is a perfect description of its estimated 10,000 caves.

Mr. Armstrong believed the Bible indicates Petra could be the place God uses to protect His Church during the Great Tribulation (Rev. 12:12, 14). But he never stated that dogmatically. (p. 5.)
He says he is unsure that Petra will be the place of safety, but here he speaks as though it will be the place of safety.
We must trust in God, not in a physical place. However, just going to such a desolate place as Petra would take strong faith. And we need to be building faith for such a journey. After all, it is prophesied. That time is very near, so God wants us to think about it in the context of faith. (p. 6.)
How unclear and unconcise this is.So is Petra the place of safety or not? Why can he not give a simple answer?

Flurry also condemns the Tkachite WCG's embrace of the doctrine of the Trinity.
ESAU FELL APART, just as the Edomite Laodiceans are collapsing today. And God tells us why. We must look at these verses spiritually today. Why don’t these verses discuss wives and children instead of orphans or “FATHERLESS CHILDREN” and “WIDOWS”? Today these Laodiceans have REJECTED GOD THE FATHER AND JESUS CHRIST THEIR HUSBAND! They have no spiritual Father or Husband. Spiritually, they are ORPHANS AND WIDOWS! They have accepted the pagan trinity doctrine which destroys God’s Family relationship (write for our free booklet, God is a Family).

If you have understood God’s Family relationship and then turn and accept the satanic trinity doctrine, it is tantamount to blasphemy! (p. 9. Page 10 in the current version.)
Flurry also fear mongers that some of the leaders of rival COG groups are already, when Flurry wrote this booklet in 1996, damned and fated to die in the lake of fire.
Why does God say “let thy widows trust in me”? This is Christ, their Husband, talking today. These Laodicean widows (several groups have left the WCG) trust in men, not their Husband (Rev. 19:7). They have been unfaithful to their only Husband! Now they have no Husband.

Only one group has remained faithful to what Christ taught through Mr. Armstrong. [Flurry means his PCG.] ...

God tells the leaders to “leave thy fatherless children, I will preserve them alive.” Those leaders who are filling the false father role are asked to leave the orphans so God might be able to “preserve them alive.” This means that many of these leaders HAVE MOVED BEYOND BEING SAVED SPIRITUALLY! God makes no appeal to them! They are already lost. There is no hope for them! The only hope any of them have is heeding this message. (pp. 9-10.)
What is to done with people caught in such a spiritual state? 
“Your terribleness has deceived you” (v. 16). These people don’t see how horrendously terrible they have been toward God and their brethren. And most of them refuse to hear God’s warning. We can only warn them and pray that they respond. (p. 10.)
But how can any Laodicean be warned if, as has been the case since at least 2000, PCG members are now forbidden to have contact with these Laodiceans? 
Teman was the grandson of Esau (Gen. 36:1-11). Obadiah refers to him as “O Teman.” This is how the Turks got the name Ottoman. The Ottoman Turks ruled the Middle East for about 400 years. That rule ended just before World War II.

It is very likely that the name of Esau, or Turkey, is going to be cut off forever because of their treachery to the nations of Jacob. (p. 10. Page 11 in the current version.)
Flurry is in error here. That is not how the Turks were called Ottoman. Actually it is derived from the name of Sultan Osman (1258-1326) who established the Ottoman state in 1299.

Also the Ottoman Turks lost their domination of the Middle East during World War I, not "just before World War II" as Flurry inaccurately states here. This was largely due to the Arab revolt which was encouraged by the British during World War I.

Later on in this booklet Flurry states that the unrepentant Laodiceans will murder the repentant Laodiceans in collaboration with the European Beast Power. 
It appears that their greatest shame is going to be what they do in the future to their brother Laodiceans (Jacob). ... This is discussing a time when the nations of Israel become enslaved by the Holy Roman Empire. These Edomite Laodiceans join forces with them and probably reveal who their fellow Laodiceans are—those who are repentant.

We know God’s repentant Laodiceans reject the mark of the BEAST. They are killed for doing so (Rev. 12:11, 17).

The Edomite Laodiceans accept the mark of the BEAST. This is the day that they “stood on the other side.” They were “as one of them”—the beast power. They went from God’s side to Satan’s side! These treacherous Laodiceans are in the grip of Satan. ...

The [unrepentant] Edomite Laodiceans “entered into the gate of MY people”—God’s Church! They “stood in the crossway, to cut off those of his [Family] that did escape.” The Edomite Laodiceans kept their own spiritual Family from escaping physical death. They help the BEAST power capture God’s repentant Laodiceans and kill them physically.

The vicious cycle is then completed. The people who once loved God, now hate Him and His people. (pp. 10-11.)
Then Flurry states those who murdered the repentant Laodiceans will be punished by being cast into the lake of fire and utterly destroyed. They become as they they had never been. He teaches PCG members to be encouraged that these murderers in the future will be punished.
God is sending saviours. This is the good news. If God’s Laodiceans and the world heed our message, it will save them physically and spiritually! (pp. 12-13.)
Of course the only way to heed this message, according to Flurry, is to join PCG and pay three tithes and extra offerings. How convenient for him.

Flurry ends with these words.
Strife on this earth is about to end forever! Jesus Christ is about to rule this earth. We must not overlook the greatest Saviour of all pictured in this book. “The kingdom shall be the Lord’s”—FOREVER! (p. 13.)
And so we end this reading there.

We can see that Flurry tries very hard to make not paying tithes and offerings to him sound very unattractive. This booklet is simply a crude attempt to intimidate WCG members and members of other COG groups (the hated Laodiceans) into joining PCG and paying him tithes and offerings and submitting to the many rules and regulations of PCG's leaders.

Also Flurry yet again reinterprets a book of the Bible to make it all about the Tkach changes, the rise of PCG in opposition to this, the PCG members go to the place of safety and the other Armstrongites are cursed to endure the Great Tribulation. Flurry simply recycles Malachi's Message, this time imposing his ideas onto the Book of Obadiah.

It is widely known that many of the ideas within Malachi's Message were plagiarized from The Letter to Laodicea by Jules Dervaes, written December 1986-January 1988. It was sent to 237 WCG ministers including Gerald Flurry and John Amos. In fact on September 26, 1990 Jules Dervaes sent a letter to Gerald Flurry in which he denounces Malachi's Message as "a direct and clear plagiarism" of his work.

Flurry is simply trying to manipulate people into submitting to his power.

No comments:

Post a Comment