Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Why do some COG members think this is OK?

Two stories about two different families in two different Church of God's and both involve children sucked in by abusive cult leaders who tell their members to do unchristian things that divide them from their families.

Any thinking person would see that something is wrong with this picture, but many COG members defend these two groups and blame the parents and the children.

Is this honestly what 1st century Christianity looks like?  The Church of God has always claimed it was practicing authentic Christianity just like they did during the 1st generation after Jesus death.

Herbert Armstrong claimed to have turned the hearts of the children to their parents and yet every single one of his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren were estranged from him.  

The COG has a sad track record of destroying marriages and families, now more so than ever in the past.

And yet some church see nothing wrong with this.


Byker Bob said...

The very doctrines of these ACOgs (small g because they worship a god, and not “God”) actually prevents normal familial bonding. Family relationships are not enhanced by an ACOg as they are by mainstream Christian churches, in fact they are co-opted and usurped, and members are turned into codependents of irrational extremist leaders who deal in mind control.

Even in some of the supposedly less extreme ACOgs, parents or children who are not members are considered to be “deceived”, and pitied because they’ll be coming up in the lesser, and second, ressurrection. That alone causes any family relationships to be contrived and uncomfortable. Such circumstances make it so that a lot of acting must be done every time family members see or speak with one another. Thus, the church members are placed in the control position, and must be worked around and accomodated. In a way, shunning is almost the more honest approach.


Byker Bob said...

Was just thinking more about this as I was out “decompressing” from the day in the pool. I’m just so thankful not to have to deal with all the ACOg “prefab” thinking in my life. Life today is so much more positive than it ever was in Kafkaesque Armstrongism. On Fathers Day, my son texted me one of his favorite pictures from his childhood of he and I sitting on a Harley chopper before a ride. He thanked me for giving him an unstoppable work ethic, and the skill set to fix or repair just about anything. I know that he is doing his best to be a good person and to raise his family, and to instill good values into his children. His love for them is unconditional, and not “my way or the highway”. Somehow, even though he has a dad who had been warped in many ways by Armstrongism, years before he was born, he has turned out great and I’m so proud of him.

I got to think of some of the business friends I’m fortunate enough to have, and the ways in which I get to think of them, rather than the sinister ACOg ways in which I had to regard them in years past. I get to admire one of my Catholic friends for being so patient and ethical, a good father to his children, and a mentoring boss to his employees. I get to have honest one on one friendships with the female business owners and department heads who have worked so hard on their careers. It is never in my mind that they should be stay at home moms or know their places, because we see each other as non-threatening equals who have each others backs. I get to have friends as in the old Sunday School song, “red and yellow, black and white, each is precious in His sight”, based on mutual respect for one another’s character and abilities. I don’t have to go around depressed, and alternating between feeling sorry for everyone else because they’re going to be tortured by some mythical Assyrians, or arrogant because I’m part of a group that will be spared. I get to sincerely admire people for their good qualities, rather than focus on the ways in which they are different from an ACOg control group.

If I could get a message to people especially in the worst of the ACOgs, it would be that your lives can be so much better in every way, if you could just be educated away from certain harmful and erroneous mindsets. Those mindsets aren’t even Biblical. They were created by people who know the power of fear motivation and pain compliance. They would not have any power over you if you did not continue to empower them. Ask yourself this question: Do you really even want their false prophecies to come to pass? Even though you dutifully pay your tithes, aren’t you secretly hoping that this stuff they say is going to happen does not ever happen in your lifetime? Don’t you really wish that there were a better alternative?

Actually, there is. You just need to break out of the psychological three-lock box they have you locked inside of. Life will still have its problems and challenges, but you’ll be able to once again see everything around you in a more positive light, and to reinitiate your personal evolution, and growth as a human being.


Anonymous said...

"because they’ll be coming up in the lesser, and second, ressurrection."

As opposed to being thrown into hell to be tormented forever, which those supposedly "mainstream" believe will happen to those in a cult?

So much for those "enhanced family relationships".

"Family relationships are not enhanced by an ACOg as they are by mainstream Christian churches,"

Mind you, I'm not defending the power hungry organizations, but in one fell swoop you've condemned a more merciful doctrine than what "mainstream" teaches.


Gordon Feil said...

If these churches taught the value of personal evangelism, members would make the effort to bond with outside family and friends. But their leaders don't trust the members, and so they don't promote such initiative.

Byker Bob said...

Interesting, KM. You still see Armstrong and Dante as being the only two choices? Or that it’s 100% Armstrongism or 100% mainstream?

There are so many mysteries, so much sparseness of verbiage in scripture. A Mormon friend shared his beliefs with me about ten years ago. I share this next bit with you, knowing that most people from Armstrongism who are not accustomed to independent conclusions will jump to “Oh, so now you’re Mormon?” I’m not, but what my friend shared is that their beliefs are that in the rez, God will get rid of all the confusion by explaining His truths to us personally, and then asking each of us to make an informed decision as to whether we will accept and abide by those things. Of course, my friend believes that what God will in essence be asking is whether we’ll agree to accept the Mormon faith, but I’ve since learned that this belief in an informed decision is also held by other theologians, other groups. When you think about it, it makes a great deal of sense. In a world where most “teachers” of religion cannot be trusted, how can anyone be held accountable for finding or identifying the truth?


Anonymous said...

You might be right about the more merciful sounding doctrine of cogs compared to the mainstream. It can however have a reverse effect for example the churches that see salvation as an urgency of saving someone from eternal flames might be motivated to pursue lost sheep and members, the cogs that believe people can be saved latter might not be focused on show they treat and relate to people now as no big deal after all God is not calling them, or they are blinded,they rebelled against the true church and so on. Doctrine can sound enticing but at the end of the day what is important is how we treat and relate to our fellow human beings. Does the more merciful sounding doctrine lead to a more merciful environment in the Cogs?

Anonymous said...

It's always interesting when pro-HWAers use the argument that Herbie's version of Hell is nicer than others'.

I can just imagine Herb's big jowley face on a pizza box that says, "You've tried the rest, now try the BEST!"

The problem with Herbie is that he was a complete asshole, liar, false prophet and daughter raper.

But sadly and of course, there are brainwashed people who have a psychological need to dwell on his supposedly wonderful frothings.

Anonymous said...

As usual, God (with a big G) is missing in your posts. I don't recall you quoting scriptures in your posts either. Unlike yourself, others are striving to go down the narrow path. Yet you find fault with them rather than the other way around.

Anonymous said...

If there is one thing that I learned that Armstrongism hates, it is emotions.

And exactly what are the fruits of the Spirit? And what does the fruits of the Spirit deal with? Emotions. So it is no surprise that even in this case the emotions you would think they would have about such a situation seem to be absent of emotions that are supposed to be there.

We have been reading two stories about two families in the PCG that have been forcibly separated. And what happens? We hear a resounding:

"Womp Womp".

I'm just stating what I am seeing. Maybe some will be offended that I've said that. But it is what it is. That's the reaction. It's the parent's fault. It's the children's fault. The church can't be to blame, can it? Nope, they broke the rules by leaving the church, and now they're going to pay for their transgression by being separated. It's cruelty to it's utmost what is happening. And many in the COG's end up defending the indefensible. And what do I have to say to them?

How. Dare. You.

There IS emotion involved here. There IS no defense for the PCG. What is going on is hideous, it is evil, it is satanic, it is gut-wrenching that separating families is a thing in the PCG. And it is absolutely without conscience to see it happening and not even bat an eye. It's emotional. It's real. And children are being traumatized and effected for life because of the greed and lust for power and control in the name of God. You want the definition of evil? It's tearing children apart from the parents. It doesn't matter how it happens, why it happens, when it happens, or who it happens to. You do NOT separate children from parents using the name of God. Ever. And the PCG is doing exactly that because of their twisted theology.

I hope people don't back down in their attempts to expose the PCG for the evil that is in their midst. I hope it doesn't fade. And I hope that the parents who are fighting for their children will not give up. God said he would turn the hearts of the fathers to the children and the hearts of the children to the fathers. Not force them apart in His name and authority.

This is a situation where there needs to be some emotions. And if there are not any here, from those in the church, and they are not willing to stand up for what is right, they are defenders of evil and darkness, and a shame to the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and Christ himself - who loves the little children.

Anonymous said...

Anon. 11:53 AM said, "You do NOT separate children from parents using the name of God. Ever."

You must be kidding Anonymous. Those that promote and practice it call it adoption. Look into how many churches promote it, look at how many others use the name of (a) god to say that it was "gods will", etc.

Separating infants and children from their mothers and families is a full time occupation for some, and has become a multi-billion dollar industry. Selling human beings.

Way back, they tried to assimilate the native population by forcing the children into boarding schools and /adoption. Still goes on today. All in the name of (a) god.

Some of us ripped apart by this thing called adoption are absolutely stunned by what has gone on is the news lately... just stunned. And heartbroken that people that promote adoption can be so adamant that the separating of the families at the border is immoral but, adoption is good? Hypocrites.

nck said...


Emotions are about the worst thing to base decisions and actions on, although they might serve to inspire you or others.

This separation thing has been going on in the name of christianity forever. Viking children at the court of charlemagne, native americans in navy uniform at school, the australian government destroying a 50.000 year old culture in the 1950's with best intentions to separate natives from their family and raise them "Australian."

Dangit in 1994 orthodox christianity separated 10.000 muslim children from their fathers to murder the fathers. At least the protestants got to bomb belgrade for that atrocity and have their leaders rot in protestant prisons.

I do agree the bible speaks about Roman Law, "whereby they say abba father in the name of adoption, citing Roman Law, since all emperors were adopted children."

It is a good thing you are morally outraged, I really feel your pain.
But as a commander leading the fight against the zombie army I would have you at arms length from first contact. Perhaps the PR department would have a nice space for you since you are a good writer. But to face zombies you need to be smarter and use your feelings as a guide but not be steered by them otherwise you'll accomplish nothing but annihilation by falling into their trap. Zombies don't care if 5 fall and you walk into their trap and make a fool of yourself proving their point.

Hollywood movies about a lone hero guided by moral outrage are about the worst creative crap ever produced in the history of mankind. Such hero going into that empty factory with a pistol without proper back up and guided by his "moral outrage" is sheer dead meat in the real world.

And the real world is where people are locked up in a matrix of their own devising. Whose code can only be cracked by operating or observing completely outside of that matrix, adhere to the prime directive when you are inside. Every action not adhering to the prime directive might turn you into their new god or devil. Are you prepared to bear the consequence.

Keep up the good work.


Still Learning said...

BB, you said, "I don’t have to go around depressed, and alternating between feeling sorry for everyone else because they’re going to be tortured by some mythical Assyrians, or arrogant because I’m part of a group that will be spared. I get to sincerely admire people for their good qualities, rather than focus on the ways in which they are different from an ACOg control group."

I like that very much. It's hard to get over the WCG programming, but I hope that I'm getting to this point. Mutual respect for one's fellow human being is a powerful tool. It goes a lot farther than pity and disdain.