This is from the ACPasadenareunion site and is used by permission of Gregory Doudna. Besides being an authority on the Dead Sea Scrolls, he is the author of the excellent book published in 2006, "Showdown at Big Sandy: Youthful Creativity Confronts Bureaucratic Inertia at an Unconventional Bible College in East Texas"
Does the Bible matter
AC was based on an interpretation of the Bible. Post-AC this continues for many in various forms, while some reinterpret and others repudiate, the Bible as a basis for moral or social authority. Some find spiritual solace and meaning in passages of the Bible, others find such talk "triggering". Everyone here, no less than the first Christians, are atheists--in the classical sense of not believing in the Greek and Roman gods. No one here suffers existential angst or distress wondering whether Zeus maybe really exists and what if he will be wrathful in the afterlife for our lack of belief in him. But, Yahweh and Christ are live issues to many.
70% of Americans self-identify as Christian. 25% of Americans are evangelical Christians (versus 15% mainstream Protestant and 20% Catholic). Evangelicals--a quarter of America--are the main voter base of the Republican Party and responsible for the Trump Presidency and several recent presidencies, for better or worse, domestically and for the world. Polls show evangelical Christian self-identification correlates with increased support for state torture (Pew Research Center). 65% of evangelical Christians reject the existence of macro-evolution as a scientific fact. This is compared to 30% of all Americans and ca. <1 and="" biochemists.="" biologists="" geologists="" nbsp="" of="" s="" span="" the="" world="">1>
We know cult-like thinking and how it operated, in our own past bubble experience. America, right now, is a bigger version of cult thinking. But this time it is not a church whose only barrier to exit are social and psychological ties.
Unlike the old WCG, this modern cult environment is based on war worldwide. The cost of just the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan alone, none of which involved defense of territorial United States, begun by a President who believed God had guided him to do so, is calculated at $4.4 trillion (Brown U. study, just published). These wars have killed 250,000 in direct killings, half of which are civilians, and displaced 7.8 million people from their homes. American Special Operations forces are active in 130 nations, 70% of the world's nations. American combat operations are ongoing in at least a dozen nations right now.
The WCG did not exercise civil power. But imagine Gerald Waterhouse, Roderick Meredith, or HWA or GTA types in control of the world's biggest military power in history, guided by the Word of God, the foundation of knowledge. Imagine? Maybe we don't have to imagine. Is it already here?
I wonder if there are lessons that can be learned from our AC/WCG experience which could shed insight on actual causes and solutions to issues of war and peace, as distinguished from the bromides in the Plain Truth magazine and invocation of supernatural or extraterrestrial interventions.