Saturday, April 4, 2020

Mark Armstrong: Goof Balls and Bozo's Creating A False Co-Vid Story

Mark Armstrong is on a tirade again about the government restricting churches and large gatherings of people. To him, this is all a hoax pandemic that was created to infringe on his rights.

Thanks to Hoss for this heads up....

Mark writes:

Does it really matter which crisis they're selling? As long as they have power to generate fear among the population, fear so strong that the public immediately obeys “orders” being issued over every media outlet, the talking heads think they're winning. The angry birds that sit at the anchor desks are positively giddy with their charts and graphs predicting disaster. The idea that we're taking orders from the likes of the doctor who would keep the economy on ice indefinitely is bizarre. We've watched him pull faces, even drop his face into his hands behind Trump's back. But Trump has been gracious so far, unbelievably so. Dr. Fauci can't understand why the whole nation hasn't been put under a “stay at home” order, he said yesterday. Hopefully, the President won't listen to him, or the entire United States will be a lost cause.

So apparently we're waiting for “the numbers” to signal that it's “safe” to return to normal life. But who's supplying the numbers? Who's reporting the numbers? The same bozos that predicted Hillary in a landslide? The same goof-balls that have been banging on about global warming being an “existential” crisis? At this rate the curve may never be flattened, or whatever. They want Trump removed from office, and word is that the same individuals that brought us the fake impeachment nonsense are working to impeach him again.

The gnawing suspicion is that we're all being stampeded on the basis of made-up statistics and we're waiting for “numbers” the mainstream media will never report. What's really disconcerting is that they may have stampeded the President into destroying his greatest accomplishment, the roaring economy. We have no idea how the year will ultimately turn out. We're hearing predictions of recession at the very least, and a possible depression, all thanks to co-vid orders. Thinking about killing some of the downtime at the beach, or in the woods or at the park? Better think again. The authorities are outraged that some people may be engaging in enjoyable activities rather than sitting home soaking up the panic that every device is demanding.

The “news” people have foisted one false story after another upon the public. The “Russian collusion” story was delivered to the American public day after day for at least two years. When that failed to convince the public that President Trump was a Russian agent, they flipped to the Ukrainian phone call to claim that American interests had been sold out for political advantage. In fact, the sham impeachment hearings were still in progress when stories about the Chinese virus were beginning to surface. But, getting rid of Trump was the main objective and that's what his enemies went with. You don't suppose this panic is Plan C?  April 3 Update

Norbert Link Melts Down Again. As ministers and church leaders our rights are being taken away!

Norbert is really upset with people being prohibited from gathering together due to the coronavirus shutdowns around the country and the world.

The false prophet and false teacher is appalled that people cannot gather for birthdays and for church services and is perturbed that the idiot pastor in Florida was arrested this week because he gathered hundreds of people in defiance of the ruling.

This has been the typical reaction of narcissistic leaders of various Churches of God for the last few weeks.  No one can tell them what to do! They speak for God! 

This brings up a news story that appeared today about a community of Orthodox Jews in Israel this past week.

BNEI BRAK, Israel (AP) — Early this week, the streets of the central Israeli city of Bnei Brak were bustling with shoppers as ultra-Orthodox residents, obeying their religious leaders, ignored pleas to stay home in the face of the coronavirus threat. 
By Friday, Bnei Brak had become the country's worst hot spot and now resembles a ghost town. The military will soon be sending troops in to assist local authorities. One expert estimated that nearly 40% of the city's population might already have been infected. 
The city has become a lightning rod for anger and frustration by some secular Israelis who allege insular Haredi communities — with disproportionately high numbers of confirmed cases — are undermining national efforts to contain the virus. 
The pandemic also has threatened to upend deep-seated customs in the religious world, including blind obedience to religious leaders and the belief that religious studies and traditions take precedence over the rules of a modern state.  After ignoring warnings, Israeli ultra-Orthodox hit by virus

This is exactly the same thing Church of God leaders are doing. They run off at the mouth, like Norbert Link and Dave Pack are doing and people continue to come to church and congregate in social gatherings. Even milquetoast Bob Thiel is letting the leaders of his "house churches" determine whether they want to meet or not.  He does not have the balls to say STOP meeting.

No Church of God member needs to feel that God is requiring them to sit there every week during this pandemic.  To do so is putting their life and the lives of their children in danger.  Likewise, no Church of God member needs to feel that they are required to send in tithe and offering money to their leaders during this time OR to even tithe on the stimulus check being mailed out.  There is not one single Church of God leader out there that deserves their money.

Any Church of God leader that continues to demand their members meet on Saturday needs to be turned in to the police.  Then, if a member does become sick after gathering, these men need to be prosecuted.

Stop listening to this bull crap that it is an infringement upon their rights.  It's not.

Updated: Restored Church of God: Return of Christ Just Days Away As They Refuse To Acknowledge Some Of Its Members Are Sick From COVID-19

Well, it is Saturday, April 4, 2020 and Dave Pack has proven himself to be a liar once again.  Yesterday was to be the day that Dave's creature he calls "christ" was supposed to have returned to walk the hallowed grounds of the most superfantabulous campus ever built in this end time dispensation of the church. Once more he got caught in a lie and his members sit there like clap happy seals giving Dave their reverence (and money).

Why do Church of God members listen to all of these lying fools heading up their own little ministries these days?


From RCG sources:

And no self respecting COG leader will ever admit that any of their members have corona. This is practice now in the RCG anyway: a few RCG members are infected, one member even in ICU. They’ve put in prayer requests, as is a normal practice. And guess what? None of these requests are forwarded to others, because the official guideline is that RCG members do not get corona. Or, as David Pack is putting it “God will continue to protect us!”
#8:42AM Meanwhile The Great Packster is telling the RCG members, that ‘There is not another Sabbath on the horizon’ ... And it is shocking to see what this does to people. This is the message he sent to his little flock yesterday: 
Keep watching! Based on all we can “forecast,” another Sabbath this side of the Return of Christ, does not appear to be on the horizon. None of the ministers here at Headquarters can see it. One look around the nation and the world makes this impossible. Brethren, we say again, be sure to listen to the latest messages RIGHT AWAY. Time is short! While Ohio continues to have an exemption for religious organizations, the governor’s recent comments put this extraordinary exception under even greater threat. This should come as no surprise as the devil is desperately resisting God’s Work. As many around the world are trapped in their homes, let’s not forget Hebrews 13:16: “But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.” Continue to be your brother’s keeper. Fellowship over the phone and internet. Talk about the messages. We know you are praying for us here at Headquarters—know most assuredly that we are praying for all of you as well.

Commercial Break: Facing Fear and Going Deeper in The Present Distress

I recognize that digging deeper within the self is not most of us were ever taught to think about much less do.  The solution to fear was faith and trust in the future.  But we don't actually live in the future. I believe we can't really know the future.  I believe it is what we think we can do or feel the need to do to answer the fearful question "What's going to happen to me and us?"  It might feel good but it does not actually address how to live  and think in the present distress. 

I realize this is not for everyone here of course. And while my personal journey in, through and out of the Worldwide Church of God and all the experiences it brought me personally, we all handle the lessons learned differently depending. We all will process the present distress differently depending. We also go through the stages of anger, denial, bargaining and acceptance. We go through them in different orders. We get stuck in them at times for a very long time. Sometimes forever.  

I hope this is encouraging during these times to some who understand that the present moment is all one actually has in our lives that is real and while looking forward, according to one's faith, may help, it also may be a form of denial and not all that helpful in addressing the fears that are very real in this very real circumstance we all face no matter the politics and opinions about how we got here.

I realize we also tend towards short attention span theater there but a couple of presentations to consider in all the time we all now have to process our concerns, situations and fears as we watch what we cannot control unfold.

There is another way

Friday, April 3, 2020

Living Church of God: Living in fear, even at its most sacred time of year.

Conditions for Mercy: The fear and anxiety generated by the spread of the coronavirus is causing many people to look to God for mercy and deliverance from this invisible plague. While the Scriptures tell us that God is “abundant in mercy” (Numbers 14:18), many today overlook the fact that there are actually conditions for obtaining God’s mercy. David wrote in the Psalms that while mercy is one of God’s benefits, God will grant His mercy “toward those who fear Him… and to those who remember His commandments to do them” (Palm 103:1–2, 11, 18). David also wrote that God’s “salvation [deliverance] is near to those who fear Him” (Psalm 85:9), and the New Testament records that God’s “mercy is on those who fear Him” (Luke 1:50). The prophet Jeremiah warned the backsliding house of Israel, “Your own wickedness will correct you… [because]…you have forsaken the Lord your God, and the fear of Me is not in you” (Jeremiah 2:19). When Daniel entreated God on behalf of his people, he noted that God “keeps His covenant and mercy with those who love Him, and… keep His commandments” (Daniel 9:4). When we seek God’s mercy, we must also strive to meet His requirements as revealed in the Scriptures (Deuteronomy 10:12–13Micah 6:8). During the Passover season, we need to examine ourselves in this regard… and hopefully anyone today who is seeking God’s mercy will do the same.
Have a profitable Sabbath,
Douglas S. Winnail     

Winnail cannot quote a verse from outside the Old Testament that tells those in Christ to NOT live in fear.  LCG is moving into Armstrongism's Passover season, a time where the works of Jesus are supposedly made manifest and yet they cannot discuss the dude.

1Jn 4:9  By this the love of God is revealed in us: that God has sent his one and only Son into the world so that we may live through him.
1Jn 4:10  In this is love: not that we have loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the atoning sacrifice for our sins.
1Jn 4:11  Dear friends, if God so loved us, then we also ought to love one another.
1Jn 4:12  No one has seen God at any time. If we love one another, God resides in us, and his love is perfected in us.
1Jn 4:13  By this we know that we reside in God and he in us: in that he has given us of his Spirit.
1Jn 4:14  And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world.
1Jn 4:15  If anyone confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God resides in him and he in God.
1Jn 4:16  And we have come to know and to believe the love that God has in us. God is love, and the one who resides in love resides in God, and God resides in him.
1Jn 4:17  By this love is perfected with us, so that we may have confidence in the day of judgment, because just as Jesus is, so also are we in this world.
1Jn 4:18  There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears punishment has not been perfected in love.
1Jn 4:19  We love because he loved us first.

Fear of God, fear of his holiness should drive us towards Christ.  Once we recognize the work of the Spirit in our lives, the love of God being perfected in us that fear should fade in to the distance.  As a father and a husband I should fear the consequences of adultery because of the disaster it would bring in my life.  However that shouldn’t be a daily fear.  It should lead me to live according to some wise principles but there is no need to worry about it.

Once we are in Christ we are held tightly in the grip of His love.  His love for us is secure, nothing can separate us from it (Rom 8:35-39).  If I lived in daily anxiety about doing something wrong resulting in disaster for my family I would be told to seek counselling.  It isn’t healthy to live in fear.  That is the opposite of peace and love.  It is no different in our relationship with God.
Paul wrote “we haven’t receive a spirit of slavery.”  The CEV has “Spirit doesn’t make us slaves who are afraid of him.”  A slave is a afraid of his master because if steps out of line he is punished.  Paul contrasts this with a “Spirit of adoption.”  What is fear of the Lord in the New Testament? 

Miserable COG Zealot Can't Wait For A Christmas Shopping Frenzy To Usher In Tribulation

Another day in paradise and another dumb prediction by a fake Church of God false prophet who spends his days bowing to the altar of Moses:

02 April: FEMA orders 100,000 body bags to be delivered as soon as possible, as fears grow of a huge spike in Covid-19 deaths in the US. 
Even if this epidemic eases by July, if restrictions are loosened over the summer the public will throw caution to the winds and congregate in great crowds in celebration of the supposed end of the plague and to satiate a Christmas shopping frenzy in December.  Millions will be exposed to the disease and a few weeks later – especially if the tribulation is beginning, which seems very possible – there could be an exponential explosion of sickness with tens of millions sick and potentially many millions dying. James Malm
"if" "seems" "could": the typical catchphrases that these prophets of doom attached to their predictions to take any blame off their shoulders if the predictions fail to happen, which they will.

Thursday, April 2, 2020

Gerald Weston Has 3 Points On How To Remain Tithe Producing During Coronavirus Shut Down

Living Church of God members must ALWAYS remain PRODUCTIVE tithe producing in order to keep a steady stream of money coming in so they can tithe on it to the church.

At least Gerald only had 3 points instead of 10, 20, or 30 that he and others are so famous for doing in their sermons.

ht: LCG source

Does It Take An Agnostic/Atheist/Materialist/Twice Dead, Lake of Fire Bound High Priest of Molech To Remind You...

Dear Church of God Ministerial Asshats...

Definition of asshat

vulgar slang
a stupid, annoying, or detestable person ASSHOLE
Oh Look...While I know the New Testament is not on your theological radar...

Romans 13 New King James Version (NKJV)

Submit to Government

13 Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God. Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will [a]bring judgment on themselves. For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil. Do you want to be unafraid of the authority? Do what is good, and you will have praise from the same. For he is God’s minister to you for good. But if you do evil, be afraid; for he does not bear the sword in vain; for he is God’s minister, an avenger to execute wrath on him who practices evil. Therefore you must be subject, not only because of wrath but also for conscience’ sake. For because of this you also pay taxes, for they are God’s ministers attending continually to this very thing. Render therefore to all their due: taxes to whom taxes are due, customs to whom customs, fear to whom fear, honor to whom honor.

Love Your Neighbor

Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law. For the commandments, “You shall not commit adultery,” “You shall not murder,” “You shall not steal,” [b]“You shall not bear false witness,” “You shall not covet,” and if there is any other commandment, are all summed up in this saying, namely, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” 10 Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law."
...that's all I got...

Church of God, The Eternal's Jon Bisby Disgusted By Coronavirus Guidelines

View video here: Obey God Rather Than Men

We have another splinter cult leader who thinks he is above the law and in fact, mocks it at the very beginning of the sermon. Jon Bisby has been stirring up a stink in COGTE for a while with outlandish sermons and idiotic prophecies. Church members say he is denigrating Raymond Cole's direction he had intended and has now set himself up as the ultimate authority in everything and some claim he has placed himself on the same level as Jesus without saying it outright.  His words are the God-inspired!  He is a crazier version of Bob Thiel, if that is even a possibility!  

The COGTE posting on this blog is the most commented-on posting here so far.  There is some really weird stuff there.   Church of God, The Eternal's Jon Brisby Sinks To A New Vile Low
I'm going to start off the sermon by touching my face.
Am I being flippant? 
Am I being reactionary?
It is my face and I reserve the right to touch my face. No matter what our Governor says or the President of the United States or any other medical expert is going to tell me what I should do. 
Do I believe it is godly and biblical to practice good hygiene and persona practices that cut down on the spreading of disease?
Do I believe it is the right of any human government to go beyond their authority and dictate how we do it in our personal lives? 
The answer is no. 
How do we know the difference and how do we draw the line?

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Coronavirus is a tool of The Beast Power!!!!!!!!!!! OH, NOES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Why is it that self-appointed Church of God leaders always need to be living in a state of fear?  Everything around them is one big huge conspiracy to shut them down.

Our most accurate Church of God prophet to have ever existed in human history is now claiming that the coronavirus is a conspiracy by The Beast power to make us a cashless society so that when it takes over it will stop our FAVORITE prophet from being able to spend money how he wants.

COVID-19 Leading to 666?  
The novel coronavirus of Wuhan, China fame, is now called COVID-19. It has also been called the ‘Coronapocalypse.’ Does COVID-19 have any prophetic ramifications? What did Jesus teach about pestilences and sorrows in the Olivet prophecy in Matthew 24? Could COVID-19 be the ride of the fourth horseman of the Apocalypse? Why was this type of disease expected according to the Old Testament prophecies in Deuteronomy and Leviticus? What has the US Centers for Disease Control warned about? What has the CDC reported about the flu? Were there lessons about fear and infections in the 2011 movie ‘Contagion’? Because of COVID-19, the World Health Organization (WHO), nation of Iran, and certain French locations are telling people not to use cash, but instead electronic forms of payment. The US Federal Reserve is now quarantining money repatriated from Asia to reduce the potential spread of the coronavirus on US currency bills. Is COVID-19 worse than we have been told or could this all be a ‘false flag’ event to encourage people to move towards a cashless society? If the thousands of deaths associated with COVID-19 are pushing parts of the world towards cashlessness, how much more likely will the ride of the fourth horseman and over a billion human deaths motivate people to move to making electronic payments that can be monitored? The Bible tells of a soon coming society that controls buying and selling to force allegiance to a coming European Beast power, known as 666 (Revelation 13:16-18). Does the ‘great tribulation’ begin before ride of the fourth horseman or with the opening of the fifth seal of Revelation 6? Do the words of Jesus helps us better understand the sequence of the four horsemen of the Apocalypse and the start of the Great Tribulation? Will the ride of the fourth horseman help lead to the rise of 666? Is that ride very close? Dr. Thiel addresses these issues and more.
Yes, COVID-19 is helping lead to 666.

Get Behind Me, Satan!

I Know What You Are Thinking:

Good morning..

.I used to be one of you. I know how you think, what you think and the Biblical brainwashing you have been through that makes you think the way you do about world events, Biblical prophecy, the Second Coming of Jesus and the Kingdom of God on earth.
 I know how ministers and pastors, most well meaning, but full of sanctified ignorance and misunderstanding of the intent, origins, errancy and the historical inaccuracies of much we read in the Bible, have filled your minds with misguided zeal. I know how you read and understand the prophecies of the four kingdoms of Daniel and the dreams of Nebuchadnezzar, King of Babylon. I doubt you know they were written after the fact and not prophetically.
I know how you read Daniel 11 and 12 as just how things will be "in the end times."  Your end times. I know how some of you think "a thousand will fall at your right side, and ten thousand at your left, but it will not come nigh unto your dwelling."  Don't try this stunt with regards to the current distress. Stay home. 
I know how you read Matthew 24. I know some of you think that you will be "born up on eagles wings" and taken to a "place of safety," maybe in Petra, Jordan to wait out the end time carnage that you see in the Trumpets, Vials, plagues and Horsemen of Revelation. Some of you have already left and some left years ago, only to return and get back to work.
I know you read the Book of Revelation as if it was a newspaper and see these times as those times and that book as revealing all that is about to happen so Jesus can return. I know you have forgotten that 2000 years ago the opening of the Revelation says "to show unto my servants, things which must SHORTLY, come to pass." I know that you view "shortly" differently than most people understand "shortly." I know some of you think you are part of the exclusive 144,000 thousand. I know you don't understand Gematria or the 12 signs of the Zodiac but I spare you.
I know that even though you know Paul said Jesus for sure would come in his lifetime, and that he was among the "We, who are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord, shall be caught up together with the Lord, and WE shall be saved,"  he was wrong. I know you know that later in his life, Paul gave up on Jesus coming for him in his lifetime and said that he had fought a good fight, kept the faith and would have to settle for a crown of righteousness that he'd get later, but not soon anymore. 
I know you know that Paul motivated the church to not marry the loves of their lives, give lots of money to the church and be ready to go at a moments notice, in vain. I always wonder about the people who believe what Paul said about the times being short and it being better to not marry and be like him. Did they get really bitter when their lives passed and Jesus didn't return, nor did they get to be intimate with the ones they loved because Paul said not to? I bet they did anyway, just like today in all churches who try to regulate relationships. The minister gets to rant about such things, but most just sneak around and do what they want anyway. You can thank Paul and his misguided view of the immediacy of Jesus return in HIS lifetime for the skepticism of most.
I know that you know Jesus said in Matthew 24 that "this generation shall not a pass until all these things be fulfilled" and that since we now know it was not the generation of Jesus this happened for, Jesus was not ill informed, but rather meant that the generation that these things happened in, would see it through. This allows your pastor to motivate you by drawing your attention to all that is happening in your world as proof of this being all about YOU. That's the apologetic, but that is not what Jesus, who was mistaken about this meant, when he is alleged to have said it. 

I know that you know "no man knows the day or the hour, but the Father only," but choose to ignore that and predict, predict, predict to put fear, fear, fear, into each other. Or as one said, "Just because we don't know the day or the hour doesn't mean we can't know the month or the year." Right... I know your ministers tell you that Jesus will return in 3 or 5 or not more than 10 years, and they are wrong, but hopeful and of course, the fear and hope of it keeps you in your seats and giving the bucks.
I know that the gayness of some people, the lack of belief of others, the movies, TV and all the events going on in the Middle East and now the Coronavirus are proof that you won't have to wait much longer for Jesus. Little does the Pastor know that out of every 100 members of his church, about 1.2 to 6.8%  are going to be gay by nature and that the same would be true for the 100 of the clergy he got together with at his last ministerial conference where they condemned it. I know you know that all fundamentalist college campuses have a normal number of gay students in attendance. Or maybe you don't. I know they are in denial on this topic but I spare you. Oh, and this would include the faculty of course.
I know you believe the nation of Israel is the most special of God's holy nations and that as one man said to me, "anyone who picks on Israel, is challenging God himself." I know you don't believe that anyone who picks on Afghanistan is picking on God. I have to say that meme has gone a long way to insure the safety of that small rather troublesome piece of the planet. The tales of the Old Testament have insured that the rules and ways of an obscure deity, on an obscure mountain, in an obscure land, speaking to an obscure people about obscure, dictatorial and controlling obscure practices, are relevant to today. They mostly aren't. My experience is that when a nation, government, president, church or group "can do no wrong," wrong is all they get good at. I know you know that too but don't apply it to the group you associate with. You should.
I know you are told you are special and that others are not. I know that you are told you are chosen and called, while others are not chosen and not called. I know you believe you have special saving knowledge while others are lost. I know you are told that you are true and others false. I know you are led to believe that your thinking is correct on all topics biblical and prophetic and all others are wrong. 

I know you can't imagine any biblical or prophetic mistakes being made. I also know you wonder about it all. But they are being made big time and cleaning up after the shit hits the fan, may be all you get to do, and of course, ask the pastor what went wrong and where is Jesus? Oh, you'll also get to ask why you can't afford to live and why your job ended and you lost everything you worked hard for. You'll also learn the church won't be able to help you much then, and no, you can't have any of your tithe money back to get back on your feet. That was money you gave to God and he has already spent it. I know you don't know that 100% of all end time prophecies made by fundamentalist and evangelical TV Preechers, have failed miserably. I know...just around the corner.
I know you are afraid to die personally just as every human being before you has. I know you, like Paul, prefer to be "changed," at the sound of the trumpet and not die at all. After all, Paul said "we would not all die." I am not sure you realize he had to retract that later in life.
I know how you feel about "God's Law" and how much better off we'd all be if we kept "it." But I also know you aren't real sure which ones to keep. Sabbath over Sunday? Passover over Easter? Holydays over holidays? 

I know some think parents should still get to stone rebellious children. I know you are nuts if you think that. I know you that "God's Law" means different things to different people and I know that you tend to confuse what to keep from the Old Testament nation of Israel and drag it over into the New and the Church. Well except tithing of course. I know how you think we are all spiritual Israelites, but how would you feel if someone kept calling you a spiritual Zulu in order to be saved? How about a Spiritual Sioux? Actually I'd love that but that's my preference.
I also know, because I was one of you, that you don't know near as much as you think you know. You're knowing is, at times, wishful thinking, or sanctified ignorance based on the sole fact that it's what you have always been taught. I have always liked the phrase, 'Piously convicted and marginally informed".

I know that learning new perspectives is not something you are encouraged to do. I know that admitting you are wrong is not something you are often able to do. When science makes a mistake, it admits it and uses whatever information was good for future studies. If a scientist won't admit a wrong, eventually his peers convince him with actual proof.   When religion and churches make mistakes, they choke on admitting it and mostly don't.  They kill the people who point it out. At best they make fun of them or push them out the door. That's how it works.  That's how "we must all speak the same thing that there be no division among us" is applied. 
But I also know that over zealous pastors and fundamentalists need to be cautioned about your zealotry gone wrong. Zealous and sanctified ignorance can provoke all the Vials, Trumpets, Trombones and Beasts of Revelation and you will get everything promoted in the Book of Revelation EXCEPT the Second Coming. What you will get is one big mess to clean up, if you survive along with the rest of us. You'll get a place in history as the reason why the next generation wants nothing to do with organized religion or ministers and pastors who can't admit they are wrong and it's not all about them after all. You'll reap a whirlwind but not  the Kingdom of God you are so confident is coming in your lifetime. 
I know how tempting it is to say "You can sure tell Jesus is about to return" with the Covid-19 sweeping the planet and we mere mortals not yet having any immunity to it.  We even have enough earthquakes to add to the anticipation and men certainly are lovers of their own selves, proud, boasters and lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God. . We have leadership that puts that on display every day. I know you and I know your ministers mindset in times like these. .  I urge you to be careful, very careful, in what you allow the ministry to convince you is so about "Bible Times"  when, while devastating to our  way of life, security and not a little bit frightening, it ain't.  

Every great fire is destined to go out. This too shall pass...

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Those Elusive True Values--- Journey to the Center of the Armstrong World, By Henry Sturcke

Buy it here:  Those Elusive True Values


"The book you hold in your hands continues the story that I began in Fooled into Thinking: Dylan, the Sixties, and the End of the World. 

In that book, I explored how I, a teenage baby boomer, became fascinated by the message of a small church with an over sized public outreach program, the Worldwide Church of God. At the same time, I was gripped by music, especially the songs of Bob Dylan.

 Both obsessions took root in the course of one fateful weekend, the days that followed the assassination of John F. Kennedy. I was fifteen years old, a high school sophomore in the suburbs of the New York metropolitan area, and suddenly the world made no sense. 

The oscillation between the twin poles of Bible and Dylan continued as I went through high school and enrolled in an urban university; it culminated in the paradox 2 

Those Elusive True Values of committing to Worldwide through baptism by immersion and then, four months later, attending the Woodstock music festival.

 In this book, the spiritual journey continues, taking me to the center of the church’s activity, the campus of Ambassador College in Pasadena, Calif. There I met the church’s founder, Herbert Armstrong, and his flamboyant son, Garner Ted, at the time approaching the peak of his influence as a pioneering televangelist. Along with hundreds of fellow students, I soaked up the church’s teachings and strove to prepare to play my own part in the outreach of the church. 

Midway through my time in Pasadena, Worldwide experienced dis-confirmation of its interpretation of Bible prophecy and entered a period of upheaval. Yet I remained a true believer. I thought I had reached my goal and that my search had reached its conclusion. The reality was otherwise as this book shows."

Henry Sturcke 


Henry and I were contemporaries as students in Pasadena and his recollections as presented in this book are so accurate down to both the details of the experience and the emotions that went with them, I found at times I had to put the book down and take a breath for all the memories and emotions it brought back to me as a teen myself going practically sight unseen into Ambassador College and ultimately the Worldwide Church of God and ministry. 

Though he used first names only, I often knew exactly who he was talking about by the accuracy of his experiences with them.  In Chapter One he introduces "Hal", the guy with the camera, and had to chuckle knowing Hal as well as I did back in the day. Always the camera!

Henry easily expresses all the emotions of those first days on campus. He well describes those first days in the dorm and we shared the same ones along the way it seems.  Henry captures the flavor of those first days and impressions very well.  

In chapter 2 we seem also to have shared the loss of the girl back home and cautionary advice from parents about going to AC and  Church. 

From dealing with one's first Feast to what to do about the draft and the Vietnam war, it all comes alive again after all these years having passed in "Those Elusive True Values".

In Chapter 4, Mr. Sturcke well recalls the Rod Meredith of both sermon and First-Year Bible fame as well as the somewhat flamboyant and personable Richard Plache as both teacher and Dean of Students.  Plache taught Second Year Bible which was the class the Master Teacher of Creationism, Apostle Pack, referenced when he claimed to have disproven evolution with intense study 50 years ago in his recent series on the topic. "The Genesis Flood" as text was no way to disprove Evolution then or now.  

"  Meredith’s typical sermon contained a heavy dose of making us, his listeners, feel guilty for our spiritual lethargy. He sought to stir us, to infect us with a spirit of urgency, but often the effect was to make us feel not good enough. I came to feel that his sermons were like cod liver oil or some other purgative. It did one good once a year or so, but one wouldn’t want to make it a steady diet. In personal interaction, however, his sincerity and bashful smile were winning. 

Those of us with previous college experience also joined the sophomores in the same hall for second-year Bible, or “Systematic Theology.” More indoctrination, this time from Richard Plache. Tall, brilliant, witty, charismatic, he was also dean of students. One major aim of the course was to make us into good creationists. 

We read the required text, Whitcomb and Morris’s Genesis Flood. Our assigned term paper was a refutation of a book promoting evolution. I chose The Meaning of Evolution by George Gaylord Simpson, and my research centered on highlighting every instance of the use of the words “presumably,” “perhaps,” “we may suppose,” and other words and phrases I now realize are the sign of a careful scholar. Yet I thought I was refuting the author"

If you came upon the Worldwide Church of God as a teen and went on to Ambassador College, you will enjoy and recognize this highly accurate account of the experience.  

At first, I did question the limited appeal of the title "Those Elusive True Values" as being a phrase understood in total only by those who may have attended and lacking wide appeal. However, it is a book for those who attended at its core and so well done, it may stir up memories you'd rather not poke at times too!  

But if you'd enjoy an accurate record of the Ambassador College experience as a student, this recollection is for you.   Thanks for the memories Henry!

Mr Sturcke went on from graduation to be...
"...Sent by WCG to Switzerland in 1987. Began taking classes at the local university on the side. In 1995, at the time of the big split, named regional pastor for all of German-speaking Europe. 
 Laid myself off in early 1997 to balance the budget, enrolled full-time in degree program, completed in 2003 with dissertation on the Sabbath in the first Christian century (Encountering the Rest of God). 
After a year of training, ministerial credentials accepted by the Reformed church, pastored a congregation until retirement 2013. For the last eight years until retirement a dean (the equivalent of old WCG district superintendant). Adjunct at the Zurich University of the Arts, teaching New Testament to students in the church music program. Involved in the continuing education program of the Reformed church, training pastors and candidates for ministry in how to conduct worship services. 
Married to Bricket Wood grad, Edel. We celebrated 45th-anniversary last year. Five children, seven grandchildren."
....and lives in Klingnau, Switzerland

Weird COG Dude Upset No One Acknowledges Him As Modern Day Amos

Prophets seem to be a dime a dozen in the Church of God now.  In spite of that, some still crow on and on about how special they are and that their message is being ignored.

There is one particular dude though that has to work overtime by repeatedly making claims on how special he is and that no one heeds his message today. Try as he might, people still look at him as this weird guy from Living Church of God that Rod Meredith rejected and publicly rebuked. Stung by that humiliation, he started making fantastical claims that he was suddenly "set apart" from all the other fake COG prophets as the ONE TRUE prophet for the end times.

Church of God members used to be suckers for these types of men as they hit the scene claiming they are modern-day Elijah's, Elisha's, Habbakuk's, and even Amos himself, not so much anymore. In spite of that, one little dude, in particular, loves to make that claim.
It is interesting that he [Amos] had to tell people that one becomes a true prophet in a manner that most did not expect. The Apostle Paul attempted to defend his apostleship that type of way (2 Corinthians 11:5, 22-29)–and that was to people who were supposedly in the Church of God.

One of the messages that Amos proclaimed is that the time would come when people would not be able to find the words of God:
11 “Behold, the days are coming,” says the Lord God,
“That I will send a famine on the land,
Not a famine of bread,
Nor a thirst for water,
But of hearing the words of the Lord.
12 They shall wander from sea to sea,
And from north to east;
They shall run to and fro, seeking the word of the Lord,
But shall not find it. (Amos 8:11-12)
Where would a good COG prophet be today without some tragedy looming on the horizon? The "famine of the word" has always been a favorite tool of COG prophets to hook people in.  Their message is so special that it will be prohibited by the authorities, in horrible times soon to come, from spreading the gospel of Moses.

Of course, in 2020, nothing drives this home to COG prophets more than the coronavirus pandemic and the orders for citizens to not congregate and to stay at home. This is a sure sign that the government is out to stop COG's from meeting. 

With people homebound, the internet is the main way news travels and COG prophets have to use this medium as a way to get their message across. Even that is in peril now, because that big bad dude Satan is ANGRY that they are preaching the Gospel of Moses and therefore is going to shut them down from preaching that message.
I believe that the above warning is a reference to a coming internet censorship. This is likely to start just before the start of the time of Jacob’s trouble (Jeremiah 30:7), also called the Great Tribulation (Matthew 24:21). Perhaps under the guise of “neutrality,” perhaps under the guise of “The Patriot Act,” perhaps under the guise of “public welfare,” perhaps because of alleged “intolerance,” calling parts of the COG message “hate speech” and/or national security threats/issues, something will be done to stop perhaps all of the organized media efforts to proclaim biblical truths. A short work will be done (Romans 9:27-28), which will trigger the end (Matthew 24:14), and likely then the famine of the word (Amos 8:11-12).
This modern-day Amos ends his missive with this as he bemoans the fact that ALL of the Churches of God ignore him as do those the world. 
Of course, few in those nations believe that they will be taken over and have such calamity. But that will come to pass. Most would not listen to Amos then, and most, sadly, will not listen to Amos now.