Friday, May 5, 2017

All Is Vanity

nounplural vanities.1. excessive pride in one's appearance, qualities,abilities, achievements, etc.; character or qualityof being vainconceit: Failure to be elected was a great blow to his vanity.
2.  an instance or display of this quality or feeling. 
3.something about which one is vain or excessivelyproud:His good looks are his greatest vanity. 
4.lack of real value; hollowness; worthlessness:the vanity of a selfish life. 
5.something worthless, trivial, or pointless.

There has been an interesting conversation on a Facebook page about how the church tried its utmost to wipe out gratitude and the ability to accept gratitude because it was labelled as vanity. This is ironic considering how vain most of the upper leadership of the church has always been and still is.  Just look at Bob Thiel, Gerald Flurry and Dave Pack, three of the vainest men the church has ever produced, but that is another ongoing story.

Many have told stories how difficult it is today, as adults to accept praise and gratitude from others. It was so ingrained in them that to accept praise was a vain attempt to puff up one's ego.  Praising other members for jobs well done was to make them big headed and seeking glory.

Just look at Herbert Armstrong's absurd waffling on woman and make-up.  Every single time it was all about vanity.  While he continually berated women for looking beautiful, he was out buying the best custom designed suits, shirts with his initials embroidered on them, silk ties and expensive cuff links.  Of course, there was no vanity there because the apostle needed to dress impeccably in order to meet world leaders and talk about a "strong hand from someplace."

God's most superfantabulous man has this to say about women and makeup, which translates into them being whores and prostitutes.

The Pull of Vanity

Psalm 39:5-6 states, “…verily [truly] every man at his best state is altogether VANITY…Surely every man walks in a VAIN SHOW [an image].” Vanity is a powerful force in all human beings, and it is far stronger than most understand. Each person must have a healthy respect for the pull of vanity at work within him. Be honest with yourself, and admit that this tendency is within you.
Pride and vanity are why the Encyclopaedia Britannica defines “cosmetics” as “…products nobody needs—but wanting them is human nature. Today, the desire to look better, smell better, and thus feel better causes consumers worldwide—mostly women—to spend an estimated $65 billion annually on personal enhancement—cosmetics” 
Everyone wants to look or be considered pretty—or even beautiful. The pull of vanity begins early in life. Modern society places enormous emphasis on beauty. As a result, recent studies demonstrate that even very little girls are unhappy with themselves to the point of depression, with many actually contemplating suicide as a result! They feel that they do not measure up to their peers or favorite movie stars. Today, the obsession with being beautiful has led nearly 10 million adolescent and teenage girls into eating disorders. 
Consider the meaning of the word mascara. If we just accept the word for what it is, then it becomes its own honest statement from the cosmetics industry. It comes from the word mask, and the word masquerade also derives from it. In essence, to wear mascara is to wear a mask—and to masquerade as something that one is not—for the purpose of vanity and perceived beauty 
Many women who used cosmetics in these cultures also took their lead from Semiramis and adopted the use of cosmetics for the purpose of harlotry. History shows how women applied makeup to change their appearance and seduce men. Harlots and “matrons” (the female leaders of prostitution rings) were specifically recognized by their silk, jewels and cosmetics. The Truth Hidden Behind Makeup
Dave has done nothing more that take Herbert Armstrong's turn of the century beliefs and re-word them for 2017 to continue belittling women, making them "less than" and subservient.

Here is Herbert Armstrong and his twisted reasoning on how makeup causes vanity and is, therefore, a sin.
Spirit, Not Letter of Law
   "But," some might exclaim, "I never thought of any connection between lipstick and the Ten Commandments! Surely the Ten Commandments do not say anything about painting the lips or the face."  
   Perhaps you have a surprise coming. Just read on, and you shall see that God's Law is all-inclusive. It covers the WHOLE DUTY of man. It covers, in principle, everything that can be sin!  
   So what we need to find out, in order to know whether the use of lipstick and makeup is wrong, is just as simple as that! The only question is whether it transgresses GOD'S LAW! Whoever continues in sin, willfully, after receiving the knowledge of the Truth is doomed to eternal DEATH! 
   It is not enough to say, as one woman wrote me: "I am willing to obey God in all things I THINK are His will." We must obey what GOD SAYS is His will, and cease doing what GOD SAYS is sin.  
Lipstick Not Mentioned by Name 
   The English word "lipstick" is not used anywhere in any English translation or version of the Bible. Nor do we find the modern words "makeup" or "cosmetics." Most people have believed that the right or wrong of using makeup is not directly or specifically mentioned in the Scriptures.  
   Actually, God's Word does reveal directly and specifically whether this alteration of the appearance of the face is sin! This will come as quite a surprise to nearly all who read this. 
   How is it possible that painting the lips, cheeks, or eyes could be either forbidden or approved by God's LAW? It's time we realize that the Spiritual Law covers every act of right or wrong.  
   God's Law is a great inexorable overall Law of SPIRITUAL PRINCIPLES! It is not merely ten literal commands. It must be obeyed according to all the scope of its SPIRIT, as well as its literal letter.  The Truth About Makeup
Herbert Armstrong and the ministers of the various splinter groups use the word "vanity" as a means to control members.  No one deserves praise, other than the Dear Leader.  Just check out the Facebook pages for Living Church of God, Restored Church of God and the Philadelphia Church of God and witness the slobber fest church members heap upon church leaders and ministers.  It is actually stomach-turning to read at times.

Notice how praise works:
Why do we need praise?
It's no secret that being praised often makes people feel good. Pride, pleasure and increased feelings of self-esteem are all common reactions to being paid a compliment or receiving positive feedback. This is because being praised triggers the release of dopamine, a neurotransmitter that helps control the reward and pleasure centres of the brain. As well as making us feel good, dopamine can also contribute to innovative thinking and creative problem-solving at work.  The Power of Praise and Recognition
The church never praised its members and continually warned that praise was only worthy to God.  Church of God members have never been able to do anything right in the eyes of the leadership. The church members were always being blamed for something.

"Christ has had to delay his coming because YOU were not ready!"
"Loma Armstrong is dying because church members were "backed up" and hard hearted."
" The church is struggling financially because YOU have not sent in your FULL tithe or made extra offerings."
"The upcoming ministerial conference will not be able function properly unless YOU fast and repent. Brethren."
"Unless YOU send in MORE money, God's House cannot be built!"

It is no wonder that many adults today who have escaped the clutches of Armstrongism have difficulty in being praiseworthy. The church did its utmost at times to dehumanize the members and make them "less than."

If one is a Christian, that person knows that praise is a good thing to do.  But in order to praise God, one must also learn to praise each other, otherwise, the praise is empty.

2 Chronicles 5:13-14
in unison when the trumpeters and the singers were to make themselves heard with one voice to praise and to glorify the LORD, and when they lifted up their voice accompanied by trumpets and cymbals and instruments of music, and when they praised the LORD saying, "He indeed is good for His lovingkindness is everlasting," then the house, the house of the LORD, was filled with a cloud, so that the priests could not stand to minister because of the cloud, for the glory of the LORD filled the house of God.
1 Peter 1:7
so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ;
And a voice came from the throne, saying, "Give praise to our God, all you His bond-servants, you who fear Him, the small and the great." Then I heard something like the voice of a great multitude and like the sound of many waters and like the sound of mighty peals of thunder, saying, "Hallelujah! For the Lord our God, the Almighty, reigns. 



Byker Bob said...

The insider secret is that better looking people who are well-manicured and dress tastefully are generally greeted with greater acceptance and credibility. This is why Herbie and his lackeys were always so fastidious and immaculate in their own appearances. The masses were supposed to be instantly distinguishable when juxtaposed against the strutting peacock leaders.

So far as career opportunities go, if you abode by the member-dress code in the part of your life that was separate from the hours spent on church activities, you could kiss any hopes of promotion goodbye. This is especially true if your job involved relating to people.


RSK said...

And yet... Herbert himself wore makeup on camera. He claimed not to on multiple occasions, but he had to wear some in order to not look screamingly bright against his red set.

Connie Schmidt said...

Sing to the tune of "You're So Vain" - Carly Simon 1972

You walked into the Church of God
Like you were walking onto a yacht
Your Bible strategically dipped below one thigh
Your tie color was apricot
You had one eye on the given tithes
And took from it , what you thought

...And all the girls dreamed that they'd be your partner
They'd be your partner, and

You're so vain
You probably think this song is about you
You're so vain,
I'll bet you think this song is about you
Don't you?
Don't you?

Oh, you had me several years ago
When I was still quite naive
Well, you said the church and I made such a pretty pair
And that I would never leave

But you gave up on the things of God
And one of them was me
I had some dreams, they were clouds in my coffee
Clouds in my coffee, and
You're so vain
You probably think this song is about you

Well I hear you Feasted at Oklahoma
And you and your cronies , have won

Then you flew your G3 up to Saratoga
To see the grandkids, Irish Dance run

Well, you're where you should be all the time
And when you're not, you're with some underhanded church spy
Or the wife of a close friend,

Wife of a close friend, and
You're so vain
You probably think this song is about you
You're so vain,
I'll bet you think this song is about you
Don't you?
Don't you?

Anonymous said...

I resent that song! It's about me! --Adrian Davis, CGI.

Mickey said...

Interesting post. Something that hit me upside the head with my automatic rejection of compliments and praise was that I was actually being ungracious to any who made kind remarks about something I did. There is no vanity in a heartfelt "thank you"