Friday, April 18, 2014

Churches and Religions Destroy Individuality





Like it or not, religions cause human beings to become non-persons.   Religion is God to those who stand in pulpits and those who sit in pews.   Individuality is foreign to the concept of religion and churches.   The church world does not want anyone who thinks or asks questions, they only want those who comply and are willing to shut-up.

Even though ever human being on earth has a unique personality and should have the God given right to express that personality, the church world only wants group-think, group molding, group compliance, group obedience, group followers and no independent thinkers.

Anyone who attends church is stripped of being a person, because once anyone becomes a member of a particular branch of church theology, that person is no longer an individual, but a piece of clay, molded together with others, and they all become clones of their leader.

Church is group theology, group think, group worship, group tithing, group doctrines and group bowing before the pastor, elder, bishop or priest.    On the other hand, for those who find a way to break free from the chains and bondage of this group mentality, they become FREE IN CHRIST, and Jesus came to set the captives free.

Jesus does not require group worship, group tithing, group bowing before preachers, group indoctrination by pastors, group religious festivals, group church going, group this and group that, where everyone is no longer a person, just a part of a religious program, called "church."

The clergy/laity system of the church world is a box, where those involved travel within that box and never outside of it.    The laity of course are the pawns and the "professional" clergy are the benefactors of the free $cash that flows like a river into their bank vaults.   All of course in the name of Jesus Christ, as if those who preach are always preaching the Gospel to the world.

So then, if you are a church goer, you have lost your individuality and have become a group with others,  and you are no longer a person, you are a group.    Strange indeed, because Jesus Christ taught that individuals follow Him, and groups have nothing to do with it.


Van Robison

22 comments:

Ralph said...

pleasantNanoleI'm curious as to why you are using matzos as a backdrop to your current posts. I had the impression you were against annual biblical festivals, such as Passover.

Anonymous said...

Van Robison concludes his post with writing:

"...So then, if you are a church goer, you have lost your individuality and have become a group with others, and you are no longer a person, you are a group. Strange indeed, because Jesus Christ taught that individuals follow Him, and groups have nothing to do with it..."

Thinking of this post and Christ's last Passover on earth with His disciples, I find it interesting that Christ did not send His disciples back to their individual families.

When it came time for the footwashing to take place it was as though Jesus Christ was saying that a new family was being created, after all, eventually all of those disciples, with the exception of Judas, were to become part of future Family, a future Bride, if you will.

Christ was still the Master:

John 13:14 If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another’s feet.

:15 For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you.

What would be the advantage of that washing of one another's feet be, of doing what Christ had told them? They were all part of a new Family now, and besides:

:17 If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them.

John

DennisCDiehl said...

That's the truth. Religion promotes sameness and conformity and real life and ideas about it don't really work well that way. Religion keeps groups locked in time with little hope to learn new things. When Churches discover "new truth" it is chaos when it should be wonder.

Of course "new truth" in churches is usually something that comes along when the old truth was threatening to break the organization apart and leadership , so called, had to give in or lose out to the times and bad fruit accumlation of the original idea that was bogus.

HWA always found new truth when the momentum for change was stronger than his ability to control it.

Organized religion and sects change when outside information gets into the group that is so overwhelmingly obvious it is change or risk forever looking like stubborn fools that will change a bit later down the line when the real truth of some matter overwhelms them. This is what will happen to the Dave Packs and Gerald Flurrys of the COG experience. It is already happening.

DennisCDiehl said...

PS "The truth will set you free" but you won't like it until it sets YOU free, and it definately will, as said, "piss you off" at first and you will blame the messenger as is customary

DennisCDiehl said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Connie Schmidt said...

A better question to ask is "What is Individuality"?

We are all shaped by our cultures, our gender, education, space and time. Your job and workplace, school, all of these create outside pressures to "conform".

Even the food we eat, and clothing. Those who keep Xmas and Easter are conforming to an outside group stimulus, are they not?

Van Robinson's post is lacking. Everyone is in a "group" and no one is truly an individual. We must all confess to be conformists.

Ed said...

I recently seen the movie, God is not dead. What I hated the most about this movie is any in the movie who question the existence of God was considered to be 'angry' at God for various reasons. This is common . Anyone who steps out of the box and dares to question the established beliefs are demonized until they finally become a part of the group that thinks the same as them.

Black Ops Mikey said...

If you haven't attended even one megachurch services, you really don't know what you are talking about: Plastic services devoid of spiritual content (and for Corky, spiritual = moral / ethical -- something no Armstrongist ever learned about in the physical rituals of a Bronze Age religion devoid of what might be termed "spiritual" [we never tire of explaining rainbows to earthworms here]), looking like people movers at Disney World, herding the cattle of the Church Corporate between the parking lot and the floor show.

For no particularly good reason that I can tell (being that I find people chaotic and irrational), there seems to be this yearning of people to be with one another. Maybe it's curiosity about the latest gossip or perhaps it's sex. Who knows? It makes no rational sense, but there it is: People need to have group contact (outside their own families) to feel connected -- and Face Book and Twitter doesn't do it for them. Maybe they aren't up for the technology. Who knows?

Anyway, there are a bunch of lonely people (including the old crow who just has to have an audience as she goes through her endless laundry list of what is wrong with her, replete with accounts of her visits to the doctor's office she makes on Medicare). Then there's the youth groups that need the social contacts to satisfy their youthful lusts for... activity.

Churches have it. Especially megachurches.

Of course, with Armstrongism, you just have to have British Israelism as the key to prophecy because you are so tired of this world's evils (particularly the politics of the Democrats) that you keep saying, "I just want it to be over" (are you considering suicide?). You have to have the bashing of those you hold most wicked, holding out the promise that everything will be destroyed and finally, you will get your revenge on the liberals by being god as god is God and making them pay for your irritations in some sick perverted way which was banned long ago by International Law.

Depressed, tired, angry, vengeful, borderline dependent people with itching ears yearning to hear what their cultmeisters are all too willing to provide them for a little ca$h and quite a lot of narcissistic source.

It isn't so much about destroying individuality as amplifying the worst of it.

Byker Bob said...

I think there is a type of balance that is not taught by most churches today. Many churches are chauvinistic, and who better represented this type of chauvinism than HWA, proclaiming that his (incest inspired?) church was the only true church, preaching a gospel that had been forgotten for over 1900 years? Most of the Adventist-inspired churches, such as the Jehovah's Witnesses preach a similar chauvinism, but Catholics are also known to be chauvinistic, and many Protestant ot Evangelical churches require the signing of a covenant membership document, amongst other things, requiring that one's tithes go exclusively to that particular group.

The new family that John has alluded to is the family of those who have been baptized into Jesus Christ. If a church teaches that you are baptized into their particular group or system, they are starting off from a false foundation from the very beginning by establishing a false loyalty, usurping the primary loyalty to Jesus and substituting themselves (and often their unique set of legalism) into that part of the equation.

In the camp of Israel, and in apostolic times, it was obvious who the church was, and who the leaders were. When prophets foretold the exile and captivity of Israel, and when Jesus foretold the destruction of the temple, they did not set dates which later required equivocation and excuses. They never used math, time cycles, or man-made theories based upon fabricated ethnicity to support the prophecies. This never placed God's validation into question as have our modern day false prophets with their never ending postponements.

Today, a follower of Jesus Christ has more resources than Christians had at any time in history, save the time when Jesus was actually living His physical life here on Earth. Bibles are readily available, there is a high literacy rate, and many devout men and women have been able to digest and teach the gospel message in effective ways. There are many ways of expressing worship as a function of individuality, as Van has noted. The resources around us are like a huge library, or reference center, which can help us if we allow that, without dominating and subverting us. A relationship with Jesus can be a fluid, dynamic thing, not a robotic formulaic one. And, no one reference resource has 100% truth or perfect knowledge and teaching. Every single one of them is flawed. This lack of perfection is treated by grace, which is simply a manifestation of God's unconditional love for his children (John 3:16).

The problem with "religion" is that it teaches rules and experience, but leaves as untreated something that we cannot fabricate, fake, or execute by sheer will power, and that is the transformation of our hearts, God's love written into our very souls, superceding jealousy, rage, depression, fear, paranoia, and feelings like in kind. Behavior can be modified by will power, but without the accompanying transformation of the heart, it goes nowhere. Church resources can educate and assist in this transformation, but they cannot make it a reality through teaching and enforcing their version of "the rules". Paul spoke so eloquently about the effect of the law, but many modern churches are still stuck in Phariseeism. We were all part of one such group, and have experienced the failure of that path.

BB

Anonymous said...

Dennis, I recall a pastor in UCG once saying, "The last thing the church needs is 'new truth.'" To me, that's the same thing as saying, "The last thing churchmembers need is an opportunity for personal growth." Yep, what everyone needs is to keep rehashing the "old (at best inaccurate) 'truth.'" There's no way to salvage such thinking or such an organizational culture. That pastor's succinct statement sums up one "seed of destruction" that is destined to doom UCG to stagnation and entropy. UCG isn't alone in that cultural trait, of course.

"once anyone becomes a member of a particular branch of church theology, that person is no longer an individual, but a piece of clay, molded together with others, and they all become clones of their leader.

When I was a kid, my dad told me not to squish all the different colors of play-doh together. I did it anyway. It all become one yucky color.

Anonymous said...


Van Robison said...

“Churches and Religions Destroy Individuality”

“Even though ever human being on earth has a unique personality and should have the God given right to express that personality, the church world only wants group-think, group molding, group compliance, group obedience, group followers and no independent thinkers.” [bolding added]



The religions of the world do teach conformity to their own unbiblical ideas. This is not good. People should be free to inquire about the Bible and what it really teaches.

The Church of God teaches people to obey the laws of God such as the Ten Commandments so that everyone can be UNITED in the truth of God and in showing proper love toward God and toward other people. The ideal goal is to do what is right and just and fair and really best for all. Everyone should try to do what is right according to God in matters of right and wrong, but is free to do as he or she chooses in all the other matters of personal preference and choice.

Many self-styled “independent thinkers” who do NOT want to obey God's ways as expressed by God's laws in the Bible have a certain predictable sameness about them. Their supposedly “unique personalities” all tend to conform to a certain general pattern. They often tend to be covered with tattoos and body piercings, are knocking an average of ten years off their lives by smoking, are going deaf from listening to loud rock noise blaring in their ears, think they are expanding their minds with illegal drugs, want to get rich at the casinos by winning every other gambler's money, spread sexually transmitted diseases with what they think are their modern ideas about “free” sex, and believe it is their right to kill any unborn babies that might endanger the “mother's” partying lifestyle. They all watch the same numerous sins on all the same shameful television shows and yet think they are each smarter and better than everyone else. They all think they are “in the groove” when in fact they are all in the same rut. Why do so many self-styled “independent thinkers” with all their supposedly “unique personalities” all think and look and sound basically the same?

Maybe people should be content just to have unique fingerprints, and should stop thinking that they all have to be different just for the sake of being different, and yet all ending up in the same grungy condition by trying to do things differently than God's ways as expressed by God's laws.

When I see pictures of savages in foreign lands, sitting around in filth and squalor, with nothing better to do than paint their bodies and stick bones through their noses, I wonder if this started out long ago with everyone wanting to be an “independent thinker” and trying to express all their supposedly “unique personalities” by doing things differently than God's ways as expressed by God's laws.

Many people would love to get lost in the idea that there are many “independent thinkers” with many “unique personalities.” Others would say that there are really only two categories--the righteous and the wicked--and that your only real choice is which of these two groups you want to be in.


old EXPCG hag said...

Anonymous said...

Christ was still the Master:

John 13:14 If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another’s feet.

:15 For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you.

What would be the advantage of that washing of one another's feet be, of doing what Christ had told them? They were all part of a new Family now, and besides:

:17 If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them.

John

April 19, 2014 at 3:37 AM


Yes, Christ is still the Master AND example. Worship Christ, become as Christ, not Gerald Flurry or Herbert W. Armstrong...

http://www.openbible.info/topics/becoming_more_like_christ

Now go teach this to the PCG, (Flurry's Vegetable Patch)...

http://www.exitsupportnetwork.com/mike_ep/flurry/excerpts.htm

Emphasizing LOVE and FORGIVENESS

DennisCDiehl said...

No offense John, and I'm sure you understand what you are trying to say, but your post makes little sense.

DennisCDiehl said...

" Many churches are chauvinistic, and who better represented this type of chauvinism than HWA, proclaiming that his (incest inspired?) church was the only true church, preaching a gospel that had been forgotten for over 1900 years? "

Let's not forget that that awesome hero of faith in Hebrews 11, Lot, got to be a hero of faith on the back of his insestuous relationship with his daughters. Most of the great Bible figures had dicey sexual relationships at one time or another which was probably considered quite natural back in the day.

http://listverse.com/2008/05/26/top-6-incestuous-relationships-in-the-bible/

Black Ops Mikey said...

The Church of God teaches people to obey the laws of God such as the Ten Commandments so that everyone can be UNITED in the truth of God and in showing proper love toward God and toward other people. The ideal goal is to do what is right and just and fair and really best for all.

Yes, indeed!

For example whether or not to wear makeup!

YOU MAY NOT EXPRESS YOUR INDIVIDUALITY AND THINK FOR YOURSELF BY USING LARD INFUSED MAKEUP! IT SAYS SO RIGHT HERE IN YOUR BIBLE!

YOU MUST KEEP THE NEW MOONS AS SABBATHS! NEVER MIND IT WASN'T EVEN MENTIONED UNTIL THE BOOK OF KINGS!

WIDOWS MUST PAY THREE TITHES ON SOCIAL SECURITY! THERE'S NO INDIVIDUALITY HERE! THE CULT LEADER DEMANDS IT, SO IT MUST BE DONE!

You darned Liberals are going to find some way to make the Sabbath a delight, instead of making your children do stuffy boring stifling things aren't you?!!??!

YOUR CHILDREN MUST PAY TITHES ON THEIR ALLOWANCES!!!! IT FUNDS THE IMPORTANT WORK OF THE LEADERS IN THE CHURCH COMMITTING INCEST WITH THEIR DAUGHTERS, MINISTERS COMMITTING ADULTERY ON THEIR WIVES DYING OF CANCER AND FUNDING THEIR LUXURY FUND!!! IT IS A MORAL IMPERATIVE!!!

And if you follow Eric King, be certain you look to the skies to see demons flying UFOs! There will be no watching "Falling Skies" this summer when you can see the real thing above your head! (Some of the demons may be coming through the Stargate at bottom of the ocean, so if you live on the beach, watch for them there -- IT'S NOT ALIENS, FOLKS! IT'S DEMONS!)

No individuality should be allowed: Fingerprints and DNA are all you are going to be allowed as you toil in slavery to your overbearing hypocritical cult!

And no opinions either! All blogging must cease NOW!

Byker Bob said...

That is a parallel I've raised before, myself, Dennis, and I'm sure that the small percentage of Armstrongites who allow themselves to believe the truth about HWA have probably used it to justify his behavior and status.

Actually, the parallel continues further! Moab and Ammon were the illegitimate offspring from the liason between Lot and his daughters. Their offspring grew into two of the nations that later gave the Israelites hell as they took possession of their covenanted lands. And of course, the modern parallel is that HWA's bastardized "church" has raised spiritual hell with Christianity (contemporary Israelites, per Paul) for the past 80 years.

Heh. Even agnostics and atheists can appreciate that one!

BB

Anonymous said...


You, too, can be an independent thinker, have a unique personality, make your own decisions, discover for yourself what is truly important--and do it all just by following the words of therapists, seminar hosts, and the writers of bestselling books.

Anonymous said...

was that straw man dressed circa 1996? LOL

Byker Bob said...

Actually, there is nothing new under the sun. Just previous examples and a plethora of choices and methods of expressing one's personality. So long as it's not hurting someone, or expressing blasphemy, why the insistence on conformity?

I can't even imagine what would happen to some kid in an ACOG who embraced the distressed clothing trend, or decided to experiment with vegetarianism. Crap, when I was a WCG kid, we weren't even allowed to wear Ed "Big Daddy" Roth shirts! I had sent away for one using what was left from my allowances after tithing, and next thing I knew, my shirt portraying RatFink driving a blown 409 powered '57 Chevy had been given away, and I was told that probably now our family name and address would be sold by the Roth people to pornographers. All over a hotrod cartoon shirt that I had planned on wearing only to cross country and track practice at school!

Knowing what we do about HWA, it is just outrageous that someone who did what he did to his daughter would insist on all of his followers imitating John Birch's political views and the Coldwell Banker salesmen's hair and clothing styles.

BB

Anonymous said...


Black Ops Mikey said...

"YOU MUST KEEP THE NEW MOONS AS SABBATHS! NEVER MIND IT WASN'T EVEN MENTIONED UNTIL THE BOOK OF KINGS!"



Wrong again, Mikey. If you really want to be an “independent thinker” rather than just another dependent stinker, you cannot just slavishly follow other rebels like James D. Malm and his New Moon nonsense.

Look what the LORD said to the northern kingdom of Israel, which had gone along with the SIN of Jeroboam in observing New Moons and the feast that Jeroboam instituted in the eighth month--a month of his own choosing--to worship golden calves at Dan and Bethel:

"Your New Moon festivals and your appointed feasts my soul hates" (Isaiah 1:14, NIV).

They should have gone to Jerusalem in the southern kingdom of Judah to observe the appointed feasts of the LORD mentioned in Leviticus 23:1-44.

Byker Bob said...

6:06, you might want to read up on who and what Isaiah was, who his targeted audience is known to have been, and to read and compare what various commentaries have to say about Isaiah 1, particularly v 14.

The scholars who wrote the commentaries of course know about the bogus days started by Jereboam, that is elementary. But they understand this verse to be an indictment against those who keep the days supported by Lev. 23:1-44 either with a wrong heart, or simply by rote or ritual with no feeling. If the heart is wrong, God refuses to be manipulated even by the observation of practices which He initiated.

BB

Black Ops Mikey said...

Some people just don't understand sarcasm.

Best selling works?

You mean, like the Bible?