The basic problem with the way Armstrongism works on the human mind is that it conditions people to consider all possible outcomes to variable situations, and then to focus in on the worst or most negative scenario as being the probable outcome. Under such thought patterns, even the blessings for living a Christian lifestyle can’t be enjoyed in this lifetime as an example to others, you have to wait for the next life to enjoy them. Also, don’t even expect loving encouragement if you go in to counsel with your minister, expect a serious ration of crap, instead. And especially expect the worst if you need to interface with someone from “the world”!
When they are writing articles for their recruitment magazines, this negativity is just so ingrained, that they can’t suppress it! That is what flows outward as the takeaway. Who in their right mind would want such negativity in their homes, and in their minds? The people who don’t renew are most likely the positive thinkers who realize that mankind is capable of high level problem solving.
One of the aspects which makes churches grow today is a positive message, a message that people can influence the surrounding community or culture towards good. The example of Lot is cited, in which God promised to spare the majority for the sake of a small number of righteous, or where Israel and Judah had punishment postponed multiple times when God saw even encouraging signs of partial obedience. You just don’t walk into an ACOG sabbath service and hear a message about winning the community for Jesus Christ. Instead, the messages are about how minorities are going to start race wars for no reason, or how the homosexuals are going to convert everyone to their “lifestyle”, and then outraged and morally superior Germans are going to need to come over here and mop everything up for God. Droughts, floods, new diseases, and demon activity. They have all manner of toys or tools to use on the unsuspecting. People just do not respond positively to such negative coercion. Nobody wants to live in circumstances of entrapment. That is not what makes the human spirit thrive!
—Byker Bob on the Banned by HWA blog, rightfully critiquing Armstrongist Churches of God splinters for their negaholic addiction.
The false gospel of, what shall we call it, how about ‘groupie salvation’, is so pervasive. Not that people say or even consciously think it, but they act it. “I’m good with God because I belong to such and such a church.” “I believe because my friends are believers.” “My buddies aren’t any more serious than me about their faith, so I’m ok.” “I’m more righteous than all those Christians because I left the church.” “I’m Messianic, therefore I’ve arrived.” NOT! You’ve gotta believe God and follow Yeshua for yourself!
—a very smart comment, from a very smart person on a blog somewhere! LOL!!!
I want to thank Teresa Beam for originally uploading this video earlier this year. This message is from a retired Eastern Orthodox priest who worships with the Seventh Day Adventists on the Sabbath. His message is startling and profound. The Armstrongist Church of God splinters are by no means exempt from this message. It is time for some to open their eyes and open their mind and start thinking outside the box.
Imagine for a moment—no more doomsday cult predictions! The future is to embraced with new and innovative opportunities. Blind and dumb faith, replaced with scientific fact and evidence. Sexism and racism is replaced by true egalitarianism between the sexes and co-operation between all racial and ethnic groups. Narcissistic selfishness and greed replaced with humanitarianism. We are definitely describing the “Star Trek” era where these things come together for once. Star Trek (the original series or the Captain Kirk era) begins circa 2200s (the 23 rd century). All of us living will not be around to see the 23rd century but the good news is that the splinters of the historic Worldwide Church of God will also not see that century either and the decline of the population of church attendance will sharply decline in the middle of this century (2050s). Grace Communion International (the WCG’s new and orthodox incarnation) will probably absorb into a larger denomination of Christendom ( I would say Presbyterian and one that would support the Karl Bathesque expression that it now holds)—but the future looks bleak for the Philadelphia, Living, Restored and any other smaller Church of God. For the rest of us, this is good news. No more children, teens and young adults in their early 20s getting indoctrinated. No more people will be stupidly spending nearly half their income to fat and rich elite who think they have a hotline to God to see how people live their lives and environment where people can think for themselves and think straight for once in their lives. These days are coming but it is not going to come overnight by no means and there is work to be done. We can thank God for the rise of the internet but one can only hope and eventually take action in getting the internet accessible in third world countries where some of these splinters will probably direct their focus because those in these countries are not aware of their con-man deeds. It has been a sad trend of late, that people are addicted to believing that the future will always be bleak and if anyone is optimistic, something is wrong with them. Attitudes like that only serve the pessimists interests substantially. It is time for a change of thought and attitude to finally challenge a negative worldview that seeks to imprison the souls of many. Do you want to be that change?
A man who is an evangelical Christian interested in apologetics goes to a Jehovah’s Witness convention and attempts to ask individual members, “Do you imitate Jesus?” The reason is that is theme at that convention. Notice how most ignore this man for asking a very simple, yet non-threatening question. Hopefully, in hindsight those Jehovah’s Witnesses who remember this man and decide one day to leave this religious doomsday cult. It will be the best part of their lives, for leaving a religious doomsday cult. :)