Tip to NO2HWA and his blog Banned from HWA. Out of the United Church of God is Church of God America formed by Leon Walker and Larry Salyer. How is the NEW splinter going to make a difference? Will it make new believers or new disciples? Will people have transformed Christ-centered lives? Will it heal the sick, raise the dead, feed the hungry,clothe the naked, give shelter to homeless? Or will personalities as usual be the focus of this new organization? I think we all know that it will be the latter than the former and this is sad. As I posted before on the blog that those caught up in Armstrongism seem to be akin to drug addicts. Strong language and I meant it. I will even go so far to say that they ALMOST make crack addicts look respectable. Like drug addicts, Armstrongites need their fix and yes, those members who are currently in the UCG, planning to join this Church of God America are looking for their latest stimulation—only to find a few years later that this new high will no longer satisfy.
On the other hand, there are some who are looking for a detox and healthier alternatives. Douglas Becker had some constructive comments on my old blog as we were giving advice to one UCG member about his membership:
United doesn’t just have some problems: Somewhere along the line, it fell into being weird and creepy, totally unhealthy. The Good News started out to be a beautiful encouraging magazine for about a year and then it descended into the same tacky British Israelism based death, devastation, destruction as the old Plain Truth. Someone somewhere made a decision to go flat out secular. Howard Davis told me, “The Good Newsis horrible! Just horrible”. And he is right. It is.
The UCG website is a mess, often with little podcasts about how you can overcome mental illness by being happy instead of getting real help from mental health professionals and taking your meds — and their teachings are based upon the preachments of a mentally ill minister [to whom I have spoken] who hasn’t figured out how to take care of his own mental illness — a real case of denial.
It should also be noted that alcoholism is also rife within the ranks, although it is somewhat better than the other xcgs amongst the ministers. That is why I talked with Dennis Luker at the end of December 2006 after services and promised to write an article he could use about Alcoholism. I hope he will take it forward and get the head of so many ministers in the xcgs out of the bottle. It is truly disturbing to be at dinner with an xcg pastor who tells you after the third glass of wine, “I am a wicked, wicked man: Help me”.
The suggestion Felix made concerning returning to the Church of God Seventh Day makes sense for you. They have a style of the Feast of Tabernacles back East, so you lose nothing there. They are warm friendly people without the rancor of Armstrongism. They actually treat Jesus with great reverence and respect just as if they expected to be his bride at his return — they already love honor respect and cherish him in a personal way. It is not a bad choice. Many in United have fled for the CG7 and are quite happy there — they have told us they will never return to United.
And there is something you should think about: Herbert Armstrong rebelled against the Church of God Seventh Day. He went ballistic when they didn’t adopt his views of British Israelism. It wasn’t about the holydays! It was about something which is not just false, but the fruit of it has been false prophecy, dissension, anger and even hatred — it has produced nearly every evil work, ending in divisions. Herbert Armstrong was a very evil man just for rebelling against the CG7 leadership because of his childishness. All of us have suffered because of his sin of rebellion. And United is keeping a portion of that evil alive.
This was commented by Douglas in 2007 and it still relevant as we enter 2011 in less than a couple of weeks. The more things change, the more things stay the same. Stay tuned for a Bill of Rights for members of the UCG. They sure need one and need one NOW. As one who rightly pleaded on Worldwide Church of God Alumni message board: Please people look to God and Jesus Christ……….and quit looking to church organizations and ministers…….they will fail. Tragically some will ignore this advice to their own peril. What stupidity.