There is a great blog that is by a former pastor (non COG) which is called Why Churches Suck. Sadly it is no longer being updated. He has an article about the personality cult of pastors in churches. I have included his entire post below. It is too good to see fade into oblivion.
Armstrongism is filled with the cult of "Pastor-gods." Just look at Dave Pack, Gerald Flurry, Ron Weinland, Rod Meredith. These men can do no wrong. People get giddy with excitement at the mere presence of these men in their midst. People get tears in their eyes when they see these men. Their writings are on par with scripture and considered just as sacred. They get seats of prominence at all functions and at church. They build enormous edifices supposedly dedicated to God but in fact are monuments to failed virility. Fellow ministers jostle and beat their way to be at the top next to these men. Walking over others backs to advance is considered sacred duty. Members literally bow to their magnificence when they cannot make any decision without first asking their pastor-god for approval.
What has been your experience with Pastor-gods in the Church of God?
The Cult of the Pastor-god
When the church is at its healthiest, many people contribute to the life of the body with gifts they’ve been given. One of those gifts is “pastoring”, or care-taking. Mixed with all the other gifts in the body, the whole community is healthy, alive, free, and an expression of God’s love in the world that is obvious and undeniable.
But the people refused to listen to Samuel. “No!” they said. “We want a king over us. Then we will be like all the other nations, with a king to lead us and to go out before us and fight our battles.” (I Samuel 8:19-20)
“...evangelicalism is not so much a religion as a series of fast-moving personality cults.” ― Frank Schaeffer
Kirk: “Apollo, we’re willing to talk, but you’ll find we don’t bow to every creature who happens to have a bag of tricks.”Apollo: “Agamemnon was one such as you, and Hercules--pride and arrogance. They defied me, until they felt my wrath.”
Apollo expected these people to fall down and honor him just like people did in the ancient days. But Kirk, recognizing the dysfunction of such an authoritarian relationship, continued to defy—and the conflict escalates:
Apollo: “I could sweep you out of existence with a wave of my hand, and bring you back again. I can give life or death. What else does mankind demand of its gods?”Kirk: “Mankind has no need for gods. We find the one quite adequate.”
Apollo: “We shall not debate, mortal. I offer you eternal rest and happiness according to the ancient ways. I ask little in return. But what I ask for I insist upon.”
In the end, Apollo lost everything and is reduced to tears:
Apollo: “I would have cherished you, cared for you. I would have loved you like a father loves his children. Did I ask so much?”Kirk: “We’ve outgrown you. You asked for something we can no longer give.”
And there’s the thing. Even people who have been raised life-long in a pastor-god cult are realizing they can no longer give outright honor and obedience to a religious authority figure. And they shouldn’t. Our leader is Christ, not the one up front with the loud voice and the big platform.