Monday, April 15, 2019

"You Cannot Adapt to Change"

Many years ago, at one of my assignments, I was called in for a promotion evaluation with whom I was working for at the time. Surprisingly, at least to me, I was rejected - even though on paper, it appeared to me I was qualified. The answer that I received in regards to the reasoning behind the Operation Manager's decision was one that blindsided me, because I had never considered this before in my life. I was told "You cannot adapt to change. We need people who can adapt to any situation."

Yes, I was blindsided. But only briefly, because after considerable time spent thinking upon this revelation to me, I realized that this individual was absolutely right. I was stubbornly, adamantly, and thoroughly opposed to any sort of change in my life - whether it is home, work, or - of course - with the Church. There are many reasons for this that are personal I will not get into here, but this was the truth. I could not handle change. 

Of course, one of the reasons was the traumatic experience with "The Changes" back in 1995. At least, this is what I blamed it on. But when I thought about it, my avoidance of change went clear back to my earliest of years. One thing that the Church taught and enforced was the rigid adherence to unchanging ritual, structure, liturgy, and methodology. Many details of my life from birth forward through the Church were exactly the same, day in and day out, over and over again, from services to songs to scriptures to people - even conversations with some were the exact same week after week. This pattern of repetition was a set up to create a well-energized fear of the unknown, and a stout denial that anything can change and be good. 

This culture of the negativity of change came directly from the religious culture of the Worldwide Church of God in many levels. What is it that we believed was impossible to change? I don't even know where to begin! Paganism - that can't ever change. The Law of Moses - nope, no changes there. Evolution - absolutely not - God does not change what He created. I'm pretty certain you could come up with hundreds of examples of things that we taught were either absolutely impossible to change, or could not turn from evil to good, or was satanic to think it could be changed, using the scripture "God is the same yesterday, today, and forever", citing that "He changeth not" to prove nothing can ever change. Everything is set in solid rock, and in black and white, and you cannot deviate to the left or the right from an established, unchanging line, or open a box to even consider that change might not only be a good thing, but could even be a God Thing. 

Is it difficult to consider the fact that even though God Himself does not change (He is love, and His Royal Law is love), that his methodology and interactions can, and do change, based on a change of conditions around Him? 

Here's a thought that will probably be considered totally heretical, but let's go there for a minute. Consider evolution. The Armstrong Position has always been that it started as one thing and cannot change. Are we then saying that God does not have the power to cause adaptations so his life forms may acclimate due to a change in an exterior environment? (I.E. - global warming, cooling, ozone, solar radiation, heat, drought, tropical rain). Are we to suppose that God is not able to supernaturally - by pure Spirit and intellect - cause a life form to adapt to survive? Why is this not considered a possibility? Is it because we cannot admit that a God of Order does not cause things to become disorderly? Is it because we cannot admit that God might do things in ways we do not know nor can we understand? Is it because if it is not specifically spelled out in black and white in Scripture than it is impossible for this to happen? God specifically said "With men this is impossible, but with God, ALL THINGS are possible".Why rule out all possibilities when God himself said all things are possible? Are we so dull and dense? 

Here's another thought that will probably be considered equally heretical - man-made observance days not rooted in scripture. It is true that once, long ago in time, people rooted in pagan culture and polytheism of many thousands of gods and idolatry used days as an idolatrous replacement of the one true God they did not know - after all, Paul himself referred to God as "the Unknown God" when walking around ancient temples (I think it was the one dedicated to Apollo, correct me if I am wrong). After the days of Jesus, Christians were successful in converting the culture from days rooted in antiquity and paganism to days of worship to Jesus. Pretty much, it's the same reasoning the Churches of God have for their Winter Family Weekends. The days off are established, so, why not replace the days with something we can agree with? Except when it comes to voluntary observances of man to God - no, they can't do that because of how it was in the past at a time long ago and far away. Failure to adapt to change is what this is - failure to realize that things can and do change and can turn from bad to good. 

And then there's the COG situation itself - the entire liturgical construct set up over 70 years ago that for some Churches of God has not changed one iota - a construct frozen in time from the 1950s to the 1970s, even sometimes down to the same suits, same briefcases, same hymnals, same sermons, same predictions, same everything, a mundane, unchanging methodology that is stuck on Groundhog Day over and over again. Except instead of "I Got You Babe", the song is "O God, Forsake Me Not". 

The Churches of God - and Armstrongism in general - have been stuck in an anti-change mode which has lasted throughout the entire lifecycle of the Church from its conception, to rapid growth, to maturity, to collapse, and now in it's death rattles - change has always been, in theology, and in practice, a dirty word. Those who have the highest avoidance to change have been the most active to attempt to revive what time has changed to their chagrin and objection. This is why we have the likes of That Wadsworth Guy who is attempting at all cost to rebuild what once was. Same with That Edmond Guy who also is attempting to rebuild what once was. Change is evil, it seems that they think. They are unwilling in many cases to pursue new formats, new ways, new advancements, new technologies (many still stuck in radio and TV!!) - they are literally in a time capsule they have locked shut and cannot get out of. The world is moving on around them and they are retreating into their own little black hole of time and space. It seems they cannot adapt to change. 

Is it too much to admit that they could be wrong? Is it too much for them to admit that things may not have been (Note: They weren't) exactly as they imagined they would be? Is it too much to see that in the reality of things in this realm that we habitate that things always change? And that those who are stuck in predetermined prepositions nearly always end up and turn out to be one hundred percent wrong? Is it too much to realize that the way we thought it was so just possibly could be a different so? After all, hasn't time proven the absolute fact that most of the way that we as the Church of God of Herbert Armstrong and Hirelings thought things were be did not prove out to come even close to that way? Or if on realizing that fact, will it be like that Star Trek computer on the Original Series that short circuited because it realized it was incorrectly programmed? 

God does not change. He has always been love and rooted in love. This is, after all, His Law. When Jesus Christ however came - like it or not, Jesus changed EVERYTHING. Herbert may have taught nothing really changed except for a few until some later time still in the future (that should definitely have happened by now!!), but he himself could not accept any sort of change! (Remember STP?) It is only when one understands that Jesus Changed Everything that one can accept Changes from the Old Covenant to the New, from Death to Life, from life apart from God to life with God, and from the separation to the inclusion of Jews and Gentiles - even to the differences of worship and observances between the two. 

But don't feel bad. The Apostles had just as much trouble - as did the Jewish Christians - of accepting change as well. And Paul faced the brunt of this with persecution, divisions, rejections - and even prison time. It's easier to go back to the way things were than to change to a new normal. But this is exactly what Jesus demanded - change. Repentance. Not going back to the way things were, but learning new ways of faith, of hope, and of love - the things of the Spirit that the way things were could not even come close to fulfilling. No wonder Jesus said he came not to bring peace, but a sword - because Jesus well knew that people would yell "WHO MOVED MY CHEESE!" when the cheese got moved. 

Until the Churches of God come to the point where they can admit that things don't always happen in the well-constructed solid concrete box the way they imagined they would, and instead look at the foundation which for over 70 years have always been shifting sand, they will continue to reject common sense and established, verifiable truth because of their inability to adapt to change. A lesson that for many Splinter Leaders will never get through their thick, stubborn, prideful, and spiritually uneducated heads.

by SHT

40 comments:

Byker Bob said...

1) God is the ultimate adapter to change. Whatever is thrown at Him, He still brings His plan to pass. Furthermore, His creation is extremely adaptable to many conditions, and regenerates itself.

2) Inflexibility to change, as you pointed out, is a deliberate part of Armstrongite culture. In their world view, what was given at Sinai is what everything that came after is to be filtered through to determine what is good, and what is bad. Added to this, HWA’s Victorian attitudes are the gold standard by which anything occurring in modern times must be evaluated. The ultimate source for secular information? Why the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica, of course! Everything which came after was a degenerate perversion of what was once acknowledged as true information!

2) When I read the works of Josephus about ten years ago, I noted that the highest tribute that ol’ Flave accorded to past Kings or priests of note was that “he made no innovations”. As I read that, I thought to myself, “Dayam! Whose instructions does that sound like?”

I guess I’m fortunate. I’m a like a paramedic for new technology. Every day, I’ve got to deal with weird stuff that is theoretically not supposed to be possible, let alone happen. Flexibility is a must, along with thinking outside the box.

BB

Anonymous said...

The apostles gave a speech about Jesus... Accused a crowd of killing him and thousands of people changed in that moment. Peter went to the gentile s and was changed by a vision and changed other people by telling them the story of his own change.

I think anyone can change when we help each other see the need and value of change.

Even some very stubborn people in the bible found repentance and change. In fact most of the people that are described as people who changed were stubborn.

There's a respect from god to people who are strong in their ways and when those people change it's a special thing.

People who change easily based on the idea of the day are often weak minded and unreliable.

I get the impression most of the people here have changed something major in their life related to religion. But we how many of us forget that sometimes change comes from a friendly word and not always a slap in the face.

DennisCDiehl said...

This is why for decades, the sermon content in all the splits and splinters is so repetitive and labeled as boring, unoriginal and non-stimulating. The ministry and leadership is in a theological rut where there is no critical or original thinking and certainly if there was it is dolled out in little pieces. On the opposite end of boring and predictable, the Tkaches proved how stupid it was to think to change the hearts, minds and beliefs over a few months where whole denominations did the same things over hundreds of years. If there was the classic prophetic "foolish Shepherd" it was Joseph Tkach Sr and company.

The leadership and ministry, as I have noted many times, is not trained well enough to know the actual background of the scriptures. Taking it all as one seamless whole, they cut and paste their way through the book weaving tales and making it mean what it never meant. Pious conviction, at best, with sermon content based on marginal information.

On top of that, should anyone actually get it and endeavor to introduce a new thought or perspective on old ideas...well it's like the Wizard of Id cartoon with "Louie" chiding the King and the King saying, "Well Louie, with ideas like that you will really go up in my Kingdom." Next scene Louie is standing at the bottom of the gallows steps and being told "Up you go Louie."

The "soon" and "shortly" , which is the mantra of the Churches of God, will prove their undoing just as it did the early First Century Church, sincere as they might have been. Dave Pack, the most offensive and ignorant of them all with the biggest mouth will fail and be another footnote in the long history of ridiculous men with personality disorders who rise to high position, in reality or in their minds, and disappear being remembered as only as the fool they were in their ignorance of the Bible and science I might add.

DennisCDiehl said...

PS When I was young and listening to GTA live and often, I thought him to be brilliant in both all things Bible and Science. Now that I have lived much of my life and done my own homework over decades I can watch one of the very same sermons and realize just how stuck in the 60's and maybe 70's he was the entire rest of his life. Ted never introduced an original thought into the Church because he was incapable of it and like so many was an expert at Bible reading but way short in the kind of education that would have informed him to be more careful in his exposition of it.

Ted floated on his charisma. Charisma is a slippery slope on the way to reality and the truth of any matter.

Kevin McMillen said...

Dennis, while I can agree with you in part I really think that you're giving mainstream (religious and secular) "scholars" way too much credit. They think Paul was anti-law, anti-Sabbath, and anti-Feast when he clearly wasn't if understood correctly. What he was, was anti anything gaining one salvation. Salvation is a free gift from God, God doesn't and will never, "OWE" salvation to anyone.

Disobeying God, however anyone wants to define disobedience (old law, new law, I don't care), brought death. Obeying God, if anything, only brings a happy life, it doesn't bring salvation.

While I have a major problem with the old WCG and HWA the one thing that was never taught was that law keeping earned salvation. Though not taught, that is how most people lived their lives. Legalistic, judgemental, watching their "brothers" for disobedience and reporting to the "ministry", etc. etc. Anyone who claims that the WCG taught (how most lived is a different story) salvation by works is a liar (not saying that's what you said).

I understand that none of this means shit to you because you don't believe the bible and I respect that.

Kevin McMillen

Anonymous said...

SHT, at one point you wrote:

"...But this is exactly what Jesus demanded - change. Repentance..."

Where did Jesus demand such a thing?

I ask that b/c Jesus knew people don't just change/repent on their own. Jesus knew how Satan was the god of this present evil world and how that thing was infesting the human mind, so that people don't "just change/repent" on their own. Satan was made without fear, hates Jesus and His Father. Satan wants your worship without you knowing that while he remains in "stealth" mode. What was it about some phrase regarding one of Satan's greatest tricks? I can't quote the phrase, but I think it was in the movie on "The Devil's Advocate."

Oh, thinking of movies, Star Trek! I'm not much of a fan but I, FWIIW, do like one particular show: Season 4 Episode 7 star trek voyager: Scientific Method Basically, again FWIIW, (spoiler alert) it shows how human beings minds were deceived by being infested/infected by invisible aliens (like a virus or an implanted program/computer chip into the mind) doing something and causing the people all sorts of pain, sorrow, grief while the humans had no clue as to why...until near the end of the episode when the cause is revealed.

Jesus did educate about sinners and the suffering:

Luke 13:3,5 I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.

Bottom line? They all perished! Sin is sin: one does not just easily repent of sin, and only Jesus was sinless. Wages of sin? Death! How does one think they will get around that? They/you/I won't!

You concluded with saying the "Churches of God": "...will continue to reject common sense and established, verifiable truth because of their inability to adapt to change. A lesson that for many Splinter Leaders will never get through their thick, stubborn, prideful, and spiritually uneducated heads..."

Churches of God? Some say: "The Greater Churches of God!" Is there really such a thing? Satan does have his "ministers of righteousness."

It is God, who grants change/repentance, but that's His choice as He continues His works (Acts 15:18; Heb 4:3) in regards to His Plan of Salvation to save humanity (including those of that "churches of god" you referred to) and then take/destroy Satan and his angels...when their purpose has been fulfilled.

Repentance scriptures?

Acts 5:31 Him hath God exalted with his right hand to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins.

Could ancient physical Israel repent? No! God does things decently and in order: where was that "Prince and a Saviour?"

Acts 11:18 When they heard these things, they held their peace, and glorified God, saying, Then hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life.

Before God allowed the Apostle Paul to go to the Gentiles, God inspired the Apostle Peter to first understand when/how God would grant Gentiles repentance. Again, all done decently and in order, but it is God who does it!

Oh, and goodness, one of the fruits of God's Spirit (not of SELF), and repentance, we have time:

Romans 2:4 Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?

That's God's choice.

Some say never say “never.” A day is coming when those leaders, blind leader of the blind, will repent, b/c if they don't they surely will perish, and we know that "The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that ALL should COME TO REPENTANCE." 2 Peter 3:9

And that "all" does not include Satan and his angels, which were MADE to be destroyed later! But, who will change God's will? There is a reason Jesus said we should pray "Thy Will be done," b/c it will be done!

And time will tell...

John

TLA said...

Dennis - how dare you! HWA was o brilliant he learned more than all the PhDs of religion and science in only 6 months in the Portland library.
GTA obviously shares that family brilliance.
The only family that outdoes theirs is the Kim family in North Korea whose published feats are so amazing.

BTW - do you know if HWA was ever really as poor as he claimed to be in the 1930s?

Anonymous said...

Kevin
The WCOG position on salvation was clear and upfront.. Salvation is a gift from God, but God will not give this gift to those who refuse to obey the ten commandments. The church gave the analogy of a person having to meet certain conditions in order to qualify for an inheritance, as can happen in a will.

Dennis's position on needing 'educated' big people to interpret the bible for the 'uneducated' little people, is a variation on HWAs unofficial church policy. Members are to 'prove all things' prior to church attendance, but are then expected to forget the bible, and blindly believe whatever the Massa minister says.

Tonto said...

Pack, Malm, Flurry , Thiel, Weinland et al , are in dire need of change...

A DIAPER CHANGE!

Kevin McMillen said...

""""Salvation is a gift from God, but God will not give this gift to those who refuse to obey the ten commandments.""""

***********************

Exo 34:28 - ..... And he wrote upon the tables the words of the covenant, the ten commandments.

"Qualifying for the Kingdom" is one of the most ignorant phrases that WCG ever used, another is "putting sin out of our lives".

Nothing that we can do qualifies us for the Kingdom, and once we sin we can't put it out of our lives, only Christ can qualify in our stead and put the sin out of our lives.

One thing that you and I will never know is if another person "refuses" to obey God or if they've been mislead into thinking something is no longer required by God. It's a good thing that God can look into the heart, something you and I can't do.

My grandparents kept Sunday, Christmas, Easter etc. all their life. Never worked on Sunday, went to church every Sunday, and never said a bad word about anyone. I'm willing to bet that they'll be in the first resurrection quicker than many in the acogs and likely quicker than myself. The heart is what matters, are they trying to obey God with the knowledge that they have? That is the key, and crap like "qualifying" for the Kingdom is just more of HWA's and the acog's b.s.


Kevin McMillen
Kevinmcmillen64@gmail.com






Still Learning said...

@ John, 7:12 am--that was "The Usual Suspects."
"The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn't exist."

Anonymous said...

Kevin
I remind you of Matthew 19:16-22. ".. If you want to enter into life, keep the commandments.."
Luke 13:24 "..strive to enter through the narrow gate..."
Revelation 20:12 tells us that we will be judged by what's written in the books ie our works and the bible.

I suggest you have a close look at what the bible says rather than blindly believing what the Protestant tele evangelists preach.

SHT said...

2:09

You have just cherry picked three scriptures out of the New Testament to support your interpretation - instead of looking at the entire New Testament in context. IN addition to the scriptures you referenced, I suggest you take a closer look at Galatians, Collosians, Romans, Acts, and the parables of Jesus. Though you think you are acting in great wisdom, you speak as if other scholars don't know what they are talking about. Though it is true some do not - many do.



Kevin McMillen said...

2:09, Where did I say not to keep any commandments? Also, there are more commandments than just the ten words/utterances spoken by God at Sinai.

Guess what 2:09, God's definition of striving is most likely different than yours.

The judging of works in Rev. 20 is not about salvation but of reward. Remember the parable of the talents? It's sad that you don't know these things.

You really need to learn a thing or two about God. When the Israelites refused to obey him he didn't say, "I wish they'd just obey me!".

Here's what he said :

Deu 5:29 - O that there were such an heart in them, that they would fear me, and keep all my commandments always, that it might be well with them, and with their children for ever!

So, though you might not like someone saying it's what's in the heart that counts, that doesn't matter because that's exactly what God said. I guarantee that if in ones heart they desire to obey God, even if they fall, God will forgive because that's what he's looking for. He can work with that person more than the person who might obey the letter perfectly (Pharisee) and begrudgingly.

HWA was correct in one thing when he said "most of you don't get it". The problem for him was that he didn't get it either!

Kevin McMillen
Kevinmcmillen64@gmail.com

Kevin McMillen said...

2:09 I don't know how I missed your last sentence but for your information I don't listen to Protestant tele evangelists. I've learned what I know from 50 years in the church of God. It might do you some good listening to some of Ron Dart's sermons and quit listening to the legalists in the larger acog groups.

Kevin McMillen
Kevinmcmillen64@gmail.com

nck said...

Kevin.

Interesting point regarding your/mine/many grandparents.

I believe the official wcg teaching would be that "these type of grandparents" would be in the 2nd ressurection, and because of their stellar character learn the truth very quickly and easy. Then they would be assigned the development and creation of a major milky way/galaxy or even a whole universe.

A terrible character wcg member, with good traits however would be in the 1st resurection regardless and part of the inner court. The assignment however might be minor there if he does not improve. Kind of cleaning the golden toilets at the auditorium, or being a registrar at the FOT while everyone else is having fun.

The 3rd resurection would in my opinion be worker bees under Elon Musk on Mars or working at the planet Bezos for distribution purposes.

My first assignment would be a road trip with Byker Bob in a kinda harrison ford star wars transporter. To convince him not to jump the lake of fire and attribute some cool systems or perhaps infrastructure on my little system far far away from HQ and the mad crowd.

When Dave Pack comes delivering the mail in a rented old plane we will play our little pranks on him, hide his materials etc, all in good order of course, remember, even BB will have supercharged powers. But he must not annoy HQ too much, or draw attenrion since I have plans for him on climate change in galaxy alpha taurus, where my grandparents will be assigned their biological dynamic farm experiment undisturbed by the city council.

Nck

Anonymous said...

Kevin
You are all over that place. Herbs "people don't get it" is a commie expression as is his "human nature needs to change" and the over emphasis on "unity" ie faking reality.
The "weeping and gnashing of teeth" is the consequence of judgment day, so I don't know why you think Revelation 20:12 is only about rewards. In the parable of the talents, there is condemnation for burying one talents, so it wasn't just rewards.
Ron Dart jumped ship to do his own thing without Gods approval. He went AWL. He deserted his post. So His sermons need to be taken with a grain of salt.
Not forgetting the Pharisees did NOT keep the letter perfectly. They robbed widows of their houses. They condemned Christ for healing on the Sabbath. The plotted to murder a sinless Christ (with some cheap rationalization thrown in). Hardly perfect law keeping.

Anonymous said...

John said: "'...But this is exactly what Jesus demanded - change. Repentance..' Where did Jesus demand such a thing?"

Forgive me if I misunderstand your post, but here's my 2 cents worth. What was Jesus's first word when He started His ministry? Answer: "Repent" (Matthew 4:17). What was John the Baptist's first word when he started his ministry? Again the answer is "Repent" (Matthew 3:2). It won't surprise me if the Two Witnesses when they arrive will emulate both. Repentance or changing one's attitude, behavior and conduct is integral to being a Christ-follower. For instance, a gay man will excuse his choice of homosexual lifestyle adamant that he cannot change because his sexual orientation is genetic. That is a dangerous and defeatist position imho and which is why we have so much mental disorders and sexual confusion in society today. I believe we all have the power to change or transform ourselves and we all must choose what standard we want to conform to. This begins in our mind and it's a conscious choice to choose God and His holy, divine standard as revealed in His Holy Bible and as personified by His Son, Christ Jesus. With God's Holy Spirit in us we are daily "transformed by the renewing of our mind" (Romans 12:2) to conform to that standard and resist and overcome what God defines as immoral and sin. It's because our present society refuses to repent and uphold the divine standard (as prior generations were far better at doing) by advocating and promoting positions diametrically opposed to life, law, order, righteousness etc. that there is so much confusion, sickness and death today. Like you quoted Christ: "I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish" (Luke 13:3, 5).

Anonymous said...

1:05 AM - "that there is so much confusion, sickness and death today..' For the most part more people are living longer today, than say even 100 years ago. Diseases that would have killed you 100 years ago are not lethal today. In the old days people had many children because most of the children did not survive childhood. I would agree there is much confusion with two witnesses, prophets, ministers and apostles of WCG offshoots. Their combined track record accuracy rate is 0%.

Anonymous said...

Anon 10:48: "I would agree there is much confusion with two witnesses, prophets, ministers and apostles of WCG offshoots. Their combined track record accuracy rate is 0%."

What confusion is there?

Aside from these titles coming from the Bible and being used in the Bible for certain men of God whom He called to perform His will none can, in my op, genuinely be used for or applied to any WCG offshoot or religious leader in the past or present and safely say in the immediate future too. I guess like John says, ...time will tell... ;-)

Kevin McMillen said...

Anonymous 11:03 Clarify, just what/where is "that" place that I'm all over?

Just how is "people don't get it" a commie expression, and just why can't it be a capitalist expression? Are you stuck in the 60's where everything is "commie"?

"human nature needs to change" kinda sounds like biblical overcoming to me, just as "unity" is a biblical concept and not "faking reality" even though the acogs do fake reality concerning unity.

You are so confused about judgement, rewards, salvation, etc. but I can't expect you to understand if you think salvation is determined by works. You clearly believe "another gospel".

If you think "weeping and gnashing of teeth" is referring to people just before they're thrown into hell fire to be destroyed you're just following the crowd and not thinking for yourself.

Anyone thrown into hell just won't give a damn, so why will they weep? However, at the resurrection, when those individuals in this life who think they know who will be saved and who won't (someone like you for instance), who think that you'll be in the first but people like myself and others on this blog will be in the second or "third" (third being a fake reality used by HWA to control people).

When those who think they are going to be firstfruits, when they're resurrected in the second, and see the likes of Mother Teresa or whomever among the firstfruits, those are the people weeping and gnashing their teeth. They're not lost, but they will be cast out from among the real firstfruits.

How do you know if Ron had God's approval or not? See, another arrogant comment by you who thinks you have God wrapped around your pinky.

As for the Pharisees, no, they didn't keep the law perfectly, but the point being is that they thought they did, which is exactly the mindset that you seem to have in this conversation.

Good day,

Kevin McMillen
Kevinmcmillen64@gmail.com

Unknown said...

Nck, I'm fully aware of what the WCG explanation was, been there done that for 25 years. Free for the last 25.

Kevin

Kevin McMillen said...

5:55, people who have been in the cog 30, 40, 50 years and should know better aren't going to listen to a kind word, usually a punch in the face is what's needed. Hence Jesus' use of vipers, whitewashed sepulchres, hypocrites!

The kind words are for those who don't know any better!

Kevin McMillen
Kevinmcmillen64@gmail.com

Byker Bob said...

The Pharisissies used the law to support their positions as bullies. Just as did another movement we all know about. They emphasized what they thought was love for God, and forgot about what was love for fellow man. One compliments and demonstrates the other.

BB

Anonymous said...

Kevin@ April 18 2019 7.14 AM,

I thought 2nd resurrection is for Mother Theresa and all those not called since Adam and Eve? The 3rd resurrection is for those called but reject their one and only chance? Have you discovered new truth? Shouldn't we stick to God's truth revealed to HWA, not by person but by His inspired word (Bible). If not for HWA, we wouldn't have the truth on a platter. No wonder so many don't get it.

Anonymous said...

Kevin
It's a matter of history that 'they don't get it,' 'human nature needs to change,' and a over emphasis on unity are collectivistic expressions. Unity is a consequence of living Gods way. It is not a primary as taught by the commies and Herb. The point is that Herb stole from the commies and projected it into the bible. Since you missed it, Herbs church culture of jackboot ministers and the 'give way' is commie.

Just about all your 7.14 AM post is invalidation. No facts or lines of reasoning. Rather, it's true cause Kevin McMillen says so. And Kevin McMillens words are like words from Gods mouth. Who is it that is being arrogant?

Anonymous said...

Still Learning,April 16, 2019 at 1:19 PM, said...

@ John, 7:12 am--that was "The Usual Suspects."

"The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn't exist."

Thank you!

John

Anonymous said...

Kevin McMillen,April 16, 2019 at 4:27 PM said to 2:09...

"......You really need to learn a thing or two about God. When the Israelites refused to obey him he didn't say, "I wish they'd just obey me!".

Here's what he said :

Deu 5:29 - O that there were such an heart in them, that they would fear me, and keep all my commandments always, that it might be well with them, and with their children for ever!......"

Good point, Kevin, but I find it is also good to remember the following verses as well:

"Yet the LORD hath not given you an heart to perceive, and eyes to see, and ears to hear, unto this day." Deut 29:4

If God does not "give" that heart...well, we have the OT example of the Israelites.

God is not a respecter of persons, and God will later give them that "...heart to perceive, and eyes to see, and ears to hear..." It's done decently and in order; God does it!

For example:

Acts 5:30-31 "The God [[That God is NOT Jesus Christ or the Word]] of our fathers raised up Jesus...Him hath God exalted with his right hand to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins."

God, by His Spirit (Zech 4:6) will give/grant repentance, through Jesus Christ, will bring about the obedience:

"And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them."

And that isn't a Mickey Mouse Millennium scripture, but one to be fulfilled after the second resurrection occurs; there is no need for any 3rd resurrection.

And time will tell...

John

Anonymous said...

Anon,April 17, 2019 at 1:05 AM, said...

"...I believe we all have the power to change or transform ourselves and we all must choose what standard we want to conform to. This begins in our mind and it's a conscious choice to choose God..."

Anon, how good is your repentance? If you could just choose to repent, then you should have stopped sinning by now, but you continue to have sin in your life! Don't you? If you have all that power to change, then when are you going to change? I mean change, where you put off sin, and choose to never do that sin again, and make that decision stick for the rest of your life! You can't and won't do it. You haven't done it yet.

Are you turning a blind eye to such verses as Jer 10:23, 17:9; Genesis 6:5; Romans 8:7, Deut 29:4...and even with God's Spirit sin will still be in your life (Romans 7:17, 20); Gal 5:17; James 4:5......and especially I John 3:8 and 2 Tim 2:26, etc.

It's because our present society refuses to repent and uphold the divine standard (as prior generations were far better at doing) by advocating and promoting positions diametrically opposed to life, law, order, righteousness etc. that there is so much confusion, sickness and death today. Like you quoted Christ: "I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish" (Luke 13:3, 5).

And that conscious choice to choose God? Have you done that? Really? This is a God the world is ignorant of:

"O righteous Father, the world hath not known thee: but I have known thee, and these have known that thou hast sent me." John 17:25

We were reminded of that at last night's Passover service.

Christ reveals the Father (Matthew 11), but no one comes to Jesus unless God the Father draws, meaning "drags," one, first (John 6:44). How did you choose God?

This world, right down to death itself, follows Satan...as though like a prisoner in some sort of bondage:

Hebrews 2:14 Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil;
:15 And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.

Again, on that sin: "He that committeth sin is of the devil..." How do you get around that verse?

Or, James 4:5 "...The spirit that dwelleth in us lusteth to envy..."

There is the very reason you will not be sinless. Your repentance just isn't that good; neither is mine, by the way!

Yet, you may read about some overcomers, who were successful (with their whole lives ahead of them):

1 John 2:13 I write unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I write unto you, young men, because ye have overcome the wicked one. I write unto you, little children, because ye have known the Father.

1 John 2:14 I have written unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one.

Do you think those fathers and your men just made "a conscious choice to choose" to be among those who have overcome that wicked one.

If God does not give/grant you repentance, then who will do that? Self has never done it and never will do it, but you believe what you want, and...

Time will tell...

John

Kevin McMillen said...

8;41 and 10:03, I'll just let the posts speak for themselves which I'm sure the reader can determine the arrogant one here.

Kevin McMillen
Kevinmcmillen64@gmail.com

Byker Bob said...

There is an old adage that we become as our enemies or competitors. There is also the parable of the blind men and the elephant. Taken together, these explain much of what Herb did. He borrowed from those he saw as enemies to his philosophy. Most long term members heard him, as an example, level the strongest possible criticism on the Roman Catholic Church. Yet, in the end, we, too became a large Popish corporation, with ol' Herb sitting as a quasi-BIblical figure, treated as if he were infallible. Hippies in the '60s were taught as being the worst vermin on the face of the earth: drug-taking, anti-American, questioning all of the solid precepts and elements of society, rebellious and refusing to accept authority, bringing down civilization. How did the church react to receivership? Why they treated the case as would the ACLU on the legal level, and protested just like the hippies with a sit-in at the Hall of Admin. Seemed like they learned well from the hippies whom they reviled.

HWA also borrowed heavily from Adolf Hitler, and the Communists, using their model for totalitarian authority. But, he borrowed from everybody. His religion was, after all, an eclectic syncretism, and without doubt, a personality cult. He borrowed inconvenient heresies, taught against type, and became an anti-preacher. I liken him to Johnny Rotten of the Sex Pistols, who disrespected and spit on his own audience, and somehow the audience loved and idolized him.

Is anything surprising?

BB

Anonymous said...

John
You seem to deny free moral agency, at the very least muddying the waters.
You appear to have the church's position. Out of envy and power lust, ministers only want limited growth from its members.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous, April 19, 2019 at 10:15 AM, wrote: "...You seem to deny free moral agency, at the very least muddying the waters..."

Which scripture(s) quoted was/were the most offensive to you?

John

Timmy said...

Anonymous April 18, 2019 at 8:41 PM said...
"...I thought 2nd resurrection is for Mother Theresa and all those not called since Adam and Eve? The 3rd resurrection is for those called but reject their one and only chance? Have you discovered new truth? Shouldn't we stick to God's truth revealed to HWA, not by person but by His inspired word (Bible). If not for HWA, we wouldn't have the truth on a platter. No wonder so many don't get it."

If you're debating the number of future resurrections as referred to in the Bible and still believe Armstrong's traditional teaching that there are 3 resurrections (1st resurrection--saints of God; 2nd resurrection--GWT Judgment; 3rd resurrection--unrepentant wicked annihilated in lake of fire) I don't mind sticking my neck out to point out that HWA's numbering was wrong. According to the Bible there are only 2 deaths and 2 resurrections not 3. 1) The resurrection of the just to eternal life and 2) the resurrection of the unjust at the GWT. Those who rise in the latter if they reject the opportunity for salvation through Christ will then suffer the "second death." There is and won't be any need for another (supposedly 3rd) resurrection to be permanently executed. If you want to call this "new truth" be my guest. It's God's truth nonetheless.

Anonymous said...

John 6:10 said: "Anon, how good is your repentance? If you could just choose to repent, then you should have stopped sinning by now, but you continue to have sin in your life! Don't you? If you have all that power to change, then when are you going to change? I mean change, where you put off sin, and choose to never do that sin again, and make that decision stick for the rest of your life! You can't and won't do it. You haven't done it yet."

John, to be honest, I can tell you that as a prepubescent boy I engaged in "sexual play" with multiple partners both boys and girls. The last partner was a boy who when his mom found out what we were doing ended our friendship on the spot. Soon after (by the grace of God I believe) an old man who was a friend of the family (a devout Catholic) taught me the 10 Commandments. I told myself from that day I would stop fooling around with sex. And I have! I admit I came close one time (after we'd moved places) with this hypersexual girl who would brazenly hint her interest in me all the time. One time she wanted to get me alone in the garage saying she wanted to show me something, but I made sure her brother tagged along, which annoyed her. This didn't stop her flashing her private parts at me to which I told my mom and the girl was briskly sent home. Another time she took her pants off while we were in bed together pretending to be a married couple! After laying there frozen not knowing what to do (temptation was that great!) I jumped up and got out of bed and went to find our siblings to continue playing as a group. The girl later moved away and I went on to high school. That was the last "sexual" (if you want to call it that) encounter I can recall I've ever had. (to be continued)

Anonymous said...

(continued from previous post)

And that is why I say as a repentant sinner myself that whatever the temptation (homosexuality, adultery, lying, murder, stealing, blaspheming, etc.) the sinner needs to repent and turn to God and consciously choose to accept and conform to the Standard God has revealed in Holy Scripture. So that means to reject sin like blasphemy, homosexuality, fornication, adultery, drunkenness, murder, stealing, lying, etc. If the person has already sinned then they have to accept the consequences of their actions and be resolved not to repeat that sin or make it worse by committing a greater sin. That's life! For instance, if they've murdered someone and are imprisoned for life then they must accept their fate. If they've had sex outside of marriage and acquire an STD or fall pregnant then they must not seek to take their own life or continue to have illicit sex again or seek to have an abortion. If they've engaged in the homosexual "lifestyle" they must stop it and either remain celibate for the rest of their life or enter into a heterosexual marriage and raise a family with their spouse. If they've stolen from another they should give the property back and pay multiple restitution in accordance with Exodus 22 in addition to facing whatever the judicial ramifications are like going to jail. If they've used God's name irreverently and engaged in offensive language to stop cussing and talking dirty. Am I making any sense? Look at Moses and King David as an example. The former murdered a man and covered it up! The latter committed adultery AND murder AND covered it up! But, both "repented" and as far as I'm aware never repeated those specific sins again. Repentance doesn't mean automatic perfection! God alone is perfect (Matthew 5:48; Mark 10:18; Luke 18:19)! To me, however, it does mean stopping the wrongdoing and doing the opposite ("rightdoing") in conformity with God's holy standard (which lists what is right and wrong) and starting the process towards perfection like Paul instructs in various places like Ephesians 4-5 for instance:

"Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another" (4:25)

"Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: Neither give place to the devil" (4:26-27)

"Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth" (4:28)

"Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers" (4:29)

"Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you" (4:31-32)

"But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints; Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks" (5:3-4)

"And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit" (5:18)

Kevin McMillen said...

Tim, that definitely is biblical truth.

For those who question Tim's use of unjust for the second resurrection, look it up. It merely means those who haven't been judged.

Act 24:15 - And have hope toward God, which they themselves also allow, that there shall be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and unjust.

Also 2 Peter 2:9

2Pe 2:9 - The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished:

The word punished in Greek (kolazo) merely means pruned or corrected. It doesn't mean punished in hell.

God is too merciful for a third resurrection just for those who reject herbie. The God of the bible is so merciful he'll most likely prune ol' herbie when the time comes. Not that I'm his judge!

Kevin McMillen
Kevinmcmillen64@gmail.com

Anonymous said...

Anon,April 21, 2019 at 10:57 PM, wrote: "...And that is why I say as a repentant sinner myself that whatever the temptation (homosexuality, adultery, lying, murder, stealing, blaspheming, etc.) the sinner needs to repent and turn to God and consciously choose to accept and conform to the Standard God has revealed in Holy Scripture. So that means to reject sin like blasphemy, homosexuality, fornication, adultery, drunkenness, murder, stealing, lying, etc...

Anon, I understand where you are coming from, but that "Standard God has revealed" has not been imposed upon mankind, but was given as a gift to ancient physical Israel: not to Egyptians, Philistines, USA, etc.

If God's Spirit dwells within you, God will grant/give you repentance/change in your life. People, without God's Spirit, may strive to be make changes in their lives too, but are those changes of God, or of SELF?

You cited the examples of a couple of murderers (Moses and David) and how they "repented," but again, God granted both of them repentance by God's Spirit. When the murders were committed, both men were "of Satan:" (John 8:44), of Satan's spirit just as was Judas, who was used in the murder of Jesus Christ. None of them repented/changed on their own. They are all examples of what life is like when one is "of Satan" and "of God" at any particular instant in time. God gets the credit for the changes: not men!

In your post, you continued to give examples of "cause and effect," pain/suffering associated with doing evil, and examples of repentance from Ephesians 4-5 to show it is a matter of 2-steps: putting off evil, and replacing evil thoughts/actions with good," and yes, again, God, by His Spirit (Zech 4:6) grants that repentance/change to those He is dragging (John 6:44)...and that is only to very few people at this time.

Good news is that God, not a respecter of persons, will eventually grant/give repentance to all human beings. Again, God does that, b/c He is working out a perfect Plan of Salvation to save all humanity and subsequently take/destroy Satan and his angels (Matt 25:41, 46; 2 Peter 2:12, etc.)!

"The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance." 2 Peter 3:9

Sin is not gotten rid of, overcome, as readily/easily as we may think when we consider such verses as: Jer 10:23, 17:9; Genesis 6:5; Romans 8:7, Deut 29:4...and even with God's Spirit sin will still be in your life (Romans 7:17, 20); Gal 5:17; James 4:5......and especially I John 3:8 and 2 Tim 2:26, etc.

"For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would." Gal 5:17


"That no flesh should glory in his presence." 1 Cor 1:29


John

Anonymous said...

Anonymous,April 18, 2019 at 8:41 PM, said...
******
Anonymous said...

Kevin@ April 18 2019 7.14 AM,

I thought 2nd resurrection is for Mother Theresa and all those not called since Adam and Eve? The 3rd resurrection is for those called but reject their one and only chance? Have you discovered new truth? Shouldn't we stick to God's truth revealed to HWA, not by person but by His inspired word (Bible). If not for HWA, we wouldn't have the truth on a platter. No wonder so many don't get it.
******
Comment said was: "...If not for HWA, we wouldn't have the truth on a platter. No wonder so many don't get it..."

Yes, there was some truth of the Bible, like Milk, on that platter, but that platter had very little strong Meat with lots of Junk Food (e.g. prophecies with incorrect timing, etc.).

I appreciate that Milk, which I learned from HWA, but the Junk Food has to go! There is no need for a 3rd resurrection.

Most are familiar with the 1st resurrection (Revelation 20:5-6) for Jesus Christ and the Firstfruits (Rev 14:1-5).

One resurrection remains for "the rest" as is mentioned in Daniel.

"And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt." Daniel 12:2

Additional 2nd resurrection details are given in Matthew 25:

32 And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats:
33 And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left.
34 Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:

And the "goats?"

41 Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:

46 And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.

Those sheep and goats were resurrected at the same time; there is no need for a 3rd resurrection.

John

Anonymous said...

Kevin McMillen,April 23, 2019 at 1:49 PM, said...

"...God is too merciful for a third resurrection just for those who reject herbie. The God of the bible is so merciful he'll most likely prune ol' herbie when the time comes. Not that I'm his judge!

Kevin McMillen
Kevinmcmillen64@gmail.com...

Kevin, do you really believe that God: He'll "...most likely prune ol' herbie when the time comes. Not that I'm his judge!..."

Why do you believe that God would likely "prune ol' herbie" and not prune yourSELF? Where does that "most likely" come from?

Whether you are a judge or not, if God were to, today, come and judge you by the same standard you have in your mind for "ol' herbie," you would suffer the same fate. Why not? Sin was in ol' herbie's life and sin is in your life! What's the difference? Sin is sin; isn't it?

Sure, when HWA was alive he did not understand all prophecy, but neither did we. Is blame/judge "ol' herbie" the answer? Why didn't we "see" the things that "ol' herbie" didn't see years ago?

And if that weren't enough: isn't it still true that: "For the wages of sin is death..."?

HWA has paid those wages of sin, but you haven't yet paid yours.

What's the difference?

A day will come when you appreciate the following verses regarding what God thinks for yourSELF and this world composed of your brothers and sisters:

"... the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." Romans 6:23

"To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, NOT IMPUTING their trespasses unto them;" 2 Cor 5:19

In a seemingly strange way, HWA "enjoys" a peaceful dirt-nap with wages of sin paid, while you contend with that sin/evil (Romans 7:20-21) within yourSELF, while simultaneously comparing yourSELF with others...for whatever you may think that is worth.

Another bottom line? None of us really has anything to really glory over:

"That no flesh should glory in his presence." 1 Cor 1:29

God has done something, properly appreciated or not, for you:

"But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man." Hebrews 2:9

Oh, and that includes all women too...and HWA.

Time will tell...

John