Monday, August 29, 2016

Philadelphia Church of God: The Army of Liberators?

The Church of God has always found life to be hard a fight to live.  We were constantly battling some evil force as we struggled to advance a few yards towards the kingdom.  Satan was always there in front of us fighting to take as many as he possibly could away from the truth.  Who can ever forget hearing ten thousand people or more at a Feast site singing, Onward Christian Soldiers, Marching Off To War in unison.  It was stirring and unifying at the same time.  We naively thought were helping fight the battle along side Herbert Armstrong as we journeyed onwards to Petra.

Our sermons and funerals were always filled with, "fighting the good fight."  Not only was our Christian walk one big continuous battle, but an even larger battle was coming in the future when the wrath of satan would be unleashed upon the world in one final battle of Armageddon. 

Of the three larger Church of God splinter groups in existence today, three of them use battle cry as their rallying cry to rake in more money.  Dave Pack has been fighting his personal and religious demons for decades and  has brought that fight to his members encouraging them to be good soldiers ready to sacrifice for the common good of the church.  Rod Meredith is perversely attracted to the war motif and loves to talk in vivid details about torture and other atrocities at the hands of the German Army.  Noting is more gratifying to him than discussing concentration camps, fiery ovens and meats hooks that Americans will be strung up on. Gerald Flurry uses war, battles and fiery judgment to keep his dwindling flock under control.  Notice the latest below by James Brady that was posted on the PCG web site:

Army of Liberators

Here is one final, inspiring thought to sing and march to as we finish our war together. In this evil world, armies sometimes set people free from oppression. The most famous case in living memory is the Allied conquest of northwestern Europe, ending the Nazi menace. American journalist Andy Rooney said the day the Allies liberated Paris was probably the happiest day the world has ever known. The liberation of the Dutch city of Nijmegen by British Grenadier Guards was vividly and accurately depicted in the film A Bridge Too Far. Throngs of deliriously happy people pressed in on the tanks, offering flowers, kisses and hugs, waving Royal Union and American flags, singing in English, “The war is over!” Seeing this film as a boy, I was enthralled. I wished I could jump on a tank and liberate a third-world country from a dictator! 
Is that not the role of God’s Church in the near future? Like those troops, we have to fight heroically to be there for those people! 
Maybe you have straggled behind at times as this awe-inspiring army, the Church of God, conducts its “forced march” (no resting) to battle. We all have. But we do not want to be remembered as a straggler in the coming battle. As Gerald Flurry writes in How to Be an Overcomer, “What hope we can deliver to the world! We have the opportunity to win a glorious victory that we can savor for all eternity! We will never regret what we did for God … in this end time. That will be our joy forever.” 
Song of Songs teaches us that we are part of something bigger than ourselves, bigger than our problems and desire for comfort! Empowered by God, this army delivers hope. We rescue entire nations! We fight in an epic war that shakes the heavens and the Earth! (Isaiah 13:13; Haggai 2:6). We march in lockstep, in unity and purpose, fighting together against all odds with valor and heroism.
As Mr. Flurry wrote in the last sentence of How to Be an Overcomer, “Let’s all be noble knights together and thank God that we have the opportunity.” We have the chance to fight as one for Christ and the Father and be an awesome bannered host! 
It is this kind of thinking that allows such terrible and physical abuse to run rampant in the Church of God.  As soldiers supposedly unified on the path to war, it is not good to be a questioner, to rock the boat or disagree with the Pastor General.  To do so, destabilizes the ranks and the battle cannot be won.   Christ has had to delay his coming so many times now that even he forgets the exact date, all due to the fact that the membership was not ready.  It had failed to fight the good fight.

If these men were actually Christian that might have the understanding that the battle has already been won. The fight is no longer ours to worry about.  There is a rest that comforts the weary of hear tired of fighting a fight they can never win because they just can't ever measure up.

Matthew 11:30The Message (MSG)

28-30 “Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”


DennisCDiehl said...

PCG author said: Seeing this film as a boy, I was enthralled. I wished I could jump on a tank and liberate a third-world country from a dictator!

And I am going to bet that same big boy found the same feeling again in Gerald Flurry's militaristic Jes... Christ.

DennisCDiehl said...

Flurry, Pack, Meredith and all others never read, or certainly never understood the NT concept of "for my yoke is easy and my burden is light."

I personally always detested "Onward Christian Soldiers." Even in my Presbyterian youth.. The "We are not divided, all one body we. One in hope and doctrine, One in charity" part was a laughable description of the Church

Anonymous said...

Didn't Fearald Slurry make a comment about the palestinians several years ago, something along the lines like "Just shoot him in the head, we can teach them later!(implying later, through the resurrections)"?


Black Ops Mikey said...

Set people free from oppression?

Who are they kidding?

They are the oppressors.

Anonymous said...

The Philadelphia Church of Fraud has always been a deceitful Bait & Switch Scam of the very worst sort.

The PCG has always talked about doing great and good things, but then has always gone on to do nothing but evil continually. People go there hoping to do the work of God, but end up doing the work of the Devil.

PCG members hear faithful-sounding sermons/noise about holding onto what Herbert W. Armstrong had taught, even as Gerald Flurry makes massive changes to it with all of his “new revelation” that “flooded” the PCG. They hear about how they have HWA's writings, even as Gerald Flurry edits them.

PCG members hear inspiring-sounding sermons/noise about how Malachi's Mess. was delivered by a mighty angel and is the “little scroll” mentioned in Revelation, even though it was actually delivered by a US postal worker and was called The Letter to Laodicea before Gerald Flurry plagiarized the copy he received in the mail and edited it half a dozen times over the years.

PCG members hear intelligent-sounding sermons/noise about how they are the most informed people on the planet, even as they are cut off from all outside COG sources of knowledge and kept in ignorance. They hear that they are right and that everyone else is wrong, even as they themselves are wrong.

PCG members hear upright-sounding sermons/noise about living morally, even as old sex maniacs, sex perverts, and predators run wild and out of control in the PCG. People who politely try to shun all the rampant sexual immorality in the PCG get rudely expelled by the malicious local leaders who then indignantly and falsely claim that they have done so much for them and tried so hard to help them.

PCG members hear courageous-sounding sermons/noise about defending their women, even as they are told to cut off all contact with their own mothers, wives, and daughters who have not actively followed That False Prophet and identity thief Gerald Flurry.

PCG members hear righteous-sounding sermons/noise about how all the other COGs are evil Laodiceans, even as they themselves get ordered to break up their own families, cut off all contact with them, and behave worse than unbelievers. The PCG is so satanic that merely being an “evil Laodicean” would be a big improvement.

PCG members hear noble-sounding sermons/noise about fighting oppression, even as they are being oppressed in the PCG by its totally unqualified, tyrannical, abusive, fake “ministers” that Gerald Flurry set up over them. They hear that Gerald Flurry once said that if a minister is being abusive, his door is always open. They find out the hard way that Gerald Flurry will never help them, but will instead just forward their complaint to the abusive minister so he can deal with them.

PCG members hear helpful-sounding sermons/noise about liberating other people from dictators, even while the PCG is actually trying unsuccessfully to enslave more victims and make them the servants of sin. It is PCG members who are in desperate need of being liberated from a demonic despot.

Retired Prof said...

My father was a great fan of the book of Revelation as interpreted by Herbert W Armstrong. He had never seen blood running as deep as horses' bridles, and he eagerly looked forward to Armageddon so he could. He hoped to deepen the channel himself by spilling some of the blood that would flow into it. He held this ambition even though he was 4-F, draftwise. He suffered a double limp from being club-footed. Maybe he thought his god would uncripple his feet in time for the battle, which for years he believed was imminent. As muscle mass diminished over time, he must also have trusted that his god would restore his youthful strength.

In the end, his mind disappeared long before his body did. I don't know whether he ever consciously gave up hope of fighting at the right hand of his god against Satan's minions or whether the idea simply faded out with the inexorable advance of senile dementia.

I don't know for sure, but I do expect that all the poor souls who trust the end times will come in their lifetime will die beforehand, either gradually like my father or suddenly like my friend whose life was snuffed out by an aneurism. Don't jump to the conclusion that I'm sneering at such people. It may be a good thing that they cherish a delusion that gives their life focus right up till their brain stops functioning.

Sharon Wilham Tinea said...

I don't attend any church of yet, but I remember looking up to you as a young youth!!! It's so sad to see you mock Mr. Armstrong and WCG as a cult, when we surely were not!! Even Mr.Armstrong said emphatically that his work was God's and anyone thinking it Armstrong was not reading their Bibles!I recently turned to my own Bubmr, and if people foolishly think God didn't mean what He said in Revelation, the book wouldn't be in there to begin with. We ARE in the end times, and seeing how far off track you choose to allow any anger toward the church after he died, just breaks my heart, as you were one of the most entertaining speakers, and it seemed you we after God's heart!! This is just !!

Anonymous said...

Sharon Wilham Tinea,
The metaphor, 'tinea toenail fungus', for Armstrongism, is not a positive thing.
It is bad, intrusive and hard to eradicate, as are many other forms of intrusive fungi.

I recommend you apply the metaphor for Terbinafine Hydrochloride to your brain, which is this blog.

BTW, you said, "I recently turned to my own Bubmr"
Did you mean to say, "bummer"?