Thursday, July 18, 2013

Madman? or Prophet? Another COG Mind Destroyed By Armstrongism

J.W. Brakebill of Francisco stands with the trailer he lives in when he goes on teaching trips. Brakebill said after a long winter trip, he realized that God would bring people to him instead. He plans to use the trailer for upcoming trips in the area. He’ll sit inside it and if someone wants to come and talk to him, they can, he said. But the message is always the same—in essence, “repent or burn,” he said.

The head line is, "...Madman? or Prophet?"

No, they are not talking about Dave Pack or Gerald Flurry.  They are talking about another normal COG member who claims to have secret knowledge that God has revealed to him through Herbert Armstrong.  This guys actions are reminiscent of Jules Dervaes, the crazy COG member who parked his van by the Pasadena campus with signs plastered all over it for a year or so.  He forced his wife and kids to stand there picketing with him.  People thought he was crazy as hell, just as the public thinks this guy is off his rocker.

Brakebill’s question: Madman? or Prophet?

Curious folks in Francisco gawk at his trailer covered in Bible verses. It sits near an RV next to the blue house on Green Street. The front of his camper reads “Madman? or Prophet?”

“I don’t know a whole lot of people,” he said. “I don’t bother people and they don’t bother me. Even my kids, they know better than to bother me,” he laughed. “Most people don’t want to hear what I have to say.” He said he’s found a few kindred spirits even though they may not agree on every single thing.

Later in the article ther eis this:

When Brakebill was in his 20s he pondered what he knew about Christianity and returned to the faith, eventually was baptized as a Pentecostal and later left that denomination to become involved with the Worldwide Church of God.

It was in this time that Brakebill experienced what he calls  the “most inspiring” spiritual moment of his life.  During a special meeting time, the church worshiped with fellow members in other countries via video communication.  “I thought that was extremely inspiring.”

Brakebill said he found things in denominational churches that conflicted with what he read in the Bible, such as whether the church should worship on Sunday or Saturday, the same day as the Jewish Sabbath Day—and he found he believed that the Sabbath should still be kept.

But after the Worldwide Church of God “fell apart” he said he couldn’t find an anchored, “true” church. “So I gave up looking for the true church,” he said.
It is sad to see the minds of people who let Armstrongism take over their lives and lead them down these sad, sick paths.  I feel more sorry for this guy, who seems to be genuinely wanting to follow God compared to these people at PCG that knowingly follow a deviate who has made their lives miserable yet will not leave.


Redfox712 said...

>>He said he has experienced persecution, but he welcomes it. What will happen at the end of his life?

Brakebill believes that he will have to give up his life for God. Sometimes that belief frightens him, but he accepts it as best he can. “Christ says ‘you’ll be hated by all nations for my name’s sake,’” he quoted. <<

That is what happened to me in Armstrongism. I had this morbid fear that when (not if, when) the European Beast Power attacked they would find me and arrest me and torture me and blind me for knowing the "truth" as taught by HWA.

No doubt many others within Armstrongism suffered from similar fears.

>>Schemling gave an example of the verse where Jesus spoke in an unusually strong way to the man who said “let me first go back and bury my father.” <<

I have been told that “let me first go back and bury my father” is not meant to be taken literally. It actually means taking care of one's elderly parent while he is alive. This could go on for years. It seems this account is referring to that Middle Eastern practice.

Anonymous said...

He gave up looking for the "true church"?
Well maybe like the "kingdom of God" (Lk 17:21) the "true church" is the same ie to be defined by a Christ-follower's character not his/her membership.

Assistant Deacon said...

"You're gonna end up eating a steady diet of government cheese, and living in a van down by the river!"

Joe Moeller said...

Please put this into his "suggestion box"...

He might be more effective, (and I would listen), if he wore a CHICKEN SUIT.

Joe Moeller
Cody, WY

Byker Bob said...

Good one, Joe! Truth in advertising. Make em dress up like their general spiritual condition, and how they function within that condition. And, there's a broad spectrum.

This guy, or someone like Bob Thiel probably are going to come up against their own limitations before they accomplish major damage, so something benign like a chicken suit is appropriate. On the other end of the spectrum are Flurry and Pack. Probably, it would be appropriate for those two to wear a gun and a mask.

The examples of Armstrongism posted for us this morning remind me of something I saw about a month ago. Sitting at one of the computers in our local library was a woman probably in her 40s, in a long dress, and wearing a floppy hat. As she surfed the Internet, she had a stuffed animal sitting on her lap. She was very animated, and at one point we exchanged smiles. The mystery was, what in her life could have caused this? I only got a partial answer when at closing time, she retrieved her shopping cart from the lobby, and went on her way. Obviously, the experience saddened me, because I have met women who have suffered horribly, but I took comfort from knowing that if she was homeless, at least she was probably free from abuse.


Anonymous said...

Having never been a part of "Armstrongism", I find it difficult to understand all the worshiping of the man. I listen to a video(I Cor 5,6)where HWA states "In my conversion instead of receiving Christ..I gave myself to him". I wish people did read their bibles to check every word against this man and all the other men from the splinter groups. Anyone who is looking for clear understanding, listen to YRM Channel, Vimeo, Blip. I have not found any false doctrines, but am keeping my eyes and ears open.

James said...

YRM Channel. Losers and spammers.

Anonymous said...

oh me....he has passover on the much for "understanding".

Anonymous said...

Joe sez, "He might be more effective, (and I would listen), if he wore a CHICKEN SUIT."

What could be funnier than him wearing a HERBIE SUIT?

(Complete with pants on fire!)