People fascinate me. I have to say that obviously Dave Pack of Restored Church of God probably fascinates me the most, at this time. . Partly because I have known him since he was 20 and pastored churches around him as well as had family members with Mr Pack as their pastor, I have observed much and heard much of his way of being a "minister." Helper of people's joy, not so much in my experience.
Now of course, both "soon to be announced" statements could be written by someone other than Dave. I would certainly expect if so, they'd not get on the site without careful review and approval.. They can be written by Dave (the language, style and phrases are classic Dave) and given to another to post as if this is not so. If this is so it is interesting , maybe only to me, that Dave simply cannot bring himself to say, "Due to post-Feast time constraints, I..." or "I will be posting..." Mr. Pack cannot be so busy that Mr. Pack can't write one paragraph explaining his intentions. The previous million words of his "announcements" were certainly all his.
Both examples are reproduced here.
The first will be this Friday, and will cover interesting points and scriptures everyone should keep in mind now. The next one or two will bring clarity to certain questions about “dates,” and how brethren should now view the “when” of the prophecy’s fulfillment."
Personally, my sense is that this is actually Dave writing the announcements and shifting them from a first person view to the third. I could be wrong but this is the same way Bible Scholars endeavor to discover who actually wrote or who did not write books in the Bible attributed to specific persons.
For example, most ministers assume and are taught that the Apostle Paul wrote Hebrews. No real scholar believes this for very good reasons. While there are many technical reasons, one of the more obvious ones is that in Paul's genuine writings he refers to himself very very often. In Hebrews, this is just not the style and people don't change their styles. I might say something anonymously in a posting but those who know me can easily say, "that's Dennis." I can write something as "M.T.Hall" yet it takes not genius to see, "that's Dennis". :)
"I wanna talk about me!"
No other epistle author in the Bible wrote like Paul. This would be true on a number of levels, but one aspect is of particular interest when we are considering how Paul views himself. He had a way of drawing attention to himself with his usage of personal pronouns. When it comes to how often he uses words like, "I", "me", "my", or "mine", the overall rate in his epistles is almost three times that of his next closest rival. There are a number of reasons why many scholars today believe Paul was not the author of the book of Hebrews. One obvious reason is, in the other epistles credited to him, Paul doesn't hesitate to identify himself along with his supposed credentials. The author of Hebrews is strangely silent on these matters. Many scholars believe Barnabas was the author of Hebrews, but I think Apollos is a far better candidate... but that's a different subject. The point is, no one knows for sure. But Paul certainly couldn't be in the running as the author of Hebrews when one also considers the statistical rate of the personal pronoun usage. The author of Hebrews refers to himself only 9 times, which is approximately 1.3 personal pronouns per thousand words. To help put this in perspective, let's compare the book of Hebrews to the book of Romans. They are both relatively large books of similar length, divided into 13 and 16 chapters respectively. Yet in only the first half of the first chapter of Romans, which is 16 verses worth, Paul uses twice as many personal pronouns as the author of Hebrews uses in his entire book! In the book of Romans, Paul refers to himself 103 times, which is rate of about 18.2 per thousand! That is 13x greater than Hebrews. In 1 Corinthians, Paul refers to himself 175 times, in 2Corinthians 103 times again, and in the relatively short book of Galatians, he refers to himself 69 times which is a rate of 25 personal pronouns per 1000 words!"
In most professional ministries you simply do not employ this style of speaking when teaching about the Gospel, Jesus and all associated (balanced and genuinely Biblical) topics. Paul had a bad habit of saying he would boast in Christ and then boast in himself. It's why scholars get suspicious of Paul when he says, "I lie not..." They think he must be lying.
Anyway...this switch form the first person to the third person is interesting. Dave's "authorized biography" also gives the impression it is written by another about Dave's life. Even Herbert Armstrong wrote his autobiography in the first person. Dave chose not to.
Why do people speak in the third person anyway? I'd feel awkward if I said, "Mr Diehl believes that Dave writes everything on his site and no one touches it," if it was me telling you this. Maybe it's just me. But why the third person?
Why the F%$# Do People Refer to Themselves in the Third Person?
Speaking in the third person rather than the first is an odd habit. It has deep roots in a kind of distancing oneself from what one says . If I say "I did a really stupid thing..." that sounds like I am involved with it and both accept and take responsibility for it. If I say "Mr Diehl did a really stupid thing..." it sounds like I want to admit it but I don't wish to be associated with it or take responsibility for it. It's somewhat like saying that I am not the author of a prophecy or a prophet but I am just telling you God's prophecy. This way, if it goes wrong, I can remind you it's not me that came up with this stuff. If it goes well, I will reap some form of power or credibility from the weak minded for it however, but if it goes sour, not to worry. God has given us more time and there are new things to reveal that we never before could have understood.
Why do I care about this? I care because these types of personalities hurt people to the core in the name of religion which is supposed to free .Thirty Five years on in life, I still am cleaning up after Dave Pack and his Trail of Tears. I don't kid myself either. Dave Pack and his Restored Church of God reminds me all to well of the kind of theological mistakes I made as a kid that resulted in me ending up in the ministry of Church that was a doomed personality cult. I did not recognize this as a kid and young minister. Once deeply embedded in it, I just wanted to encourage my churches with the hope given in scripture and help them get through the stinky stuff of real life. I could not have cared less about "HQ" after just a few short years. It was like the question in Fiddler on the Roof. "Is there a proper blessing for the Czar," the peasants asked the Rabbi. "Yes...May God bless and keep the Czar....far away from us!"
These types major in the minors as if the minors mattered and get folk off the track of a genuine and encouraging spirituality. Aside from the FACT that Dave Pack's view of himself as being spoken of by the very minor prophet Haggai is pure fantasy and a gross misapplication of scripture, this kind of egoism can lead to disaster for all concerned as I suspect it will again.