Stephen Flurry wrote an article1 telling how not to be afraid. He directs us to the Old Testament where God was dealing with ancient Israel. Since Philadelphia Church of God teaches that America and Britain are descended from the ancient Israelites (British-Israelism), their articles often center around physical promises that were given to the nation of Israel.
SF first focuses on the fear in the world before he tries to bring in the solution. He says this world will get “a lot scarier” when we realize where this “raging wrath” is coming from (Satan). [bolding throughout is ESN’s]
What is Coming is Far Worse
Then he raises the fear a level by saying:
“The Trumpet is here to tell you that what is coming will be far worse than people have ever imagined. And it’s here to tell you this: Do not be afraid.”
He tells us we are “flawed” and “lack courage” but “without it, satanic hatred—and violence—will overwhelm you.”
The Answer to Replacing Fear
Then he gives us the answer to replacing fear with courage: “BELIEVE AND FEAR AND OBEY GOD.” [caps SF’s] (“Obey God” means obey the Mosaic Law.(
He says God commands “true Christians who are doing His work” to be the ones to be strong, courageous and not afraid.
He talks about Joshua and how we are to follow the examples in the Bible and trust Him (God) for courage.
Next comes the words that Gerald Flurry said in his Ezekiel book, “God promises to make us the toughest Christians on earth!” SF says God led Paul to imprisonment and affliction and none of it moved him. I suppose members are to look forward to the same.
Satan is always “raging” with a “spirit of hate” and is in the process of “ending the world as we know it.” The targets of this rage are those “who have something to do with God, His work and His message.” (meaning those in PCG)
We aren’t told whether targets could include Christians in other countries, those who are standing up for their faith and being martyred. According to the teachings of PCG, those people are not in the “true church” (PCG) and don’t know “the truth” and aren’t “true Christians,” so evidently, in so many words, it’s too bad for them.
SF says we will “either succumb to Satan or with God’s power we will overcome him.” How? He quotes Ephesians 6:12 and talks about Joshua again.
In this article SF says we need “spiritual courage” but the Bible nowhere uses the words “spiritual courage.” So we have to guess at what it means. Evidently it is something Joshua had.
The ambiguous words at the end say, “Be brave. Be solid, Be hard. Be of good courage. Be not afraid.” How are we to do this? Reflect on the story of Joshua in the O. T. and muster up “courage”?
Stephen Flurry’s answer to not being afraid winds down a road that ends at BELIEVING GF, FEARING GF, AND OBEYING GF. [caps ESN]
PCG’s Only Hope
There was no talk in this article about the Blessed Hope since PCG doesn’t believe in it. Therefore, those reading this Trumpet article have no hope except to be taken to a “place of safety” (which SF and GF don’t ever bring up in articles or programs or it would make them look fanatical).
They want members’ “hope” to be in “becoming a member of the God family” (which isn’t brought up either) and “ruling and reigning in the Kingdom of God” during the Millennium.
The inside story about PCG and this “wonderful Kingdom” is never revealed, especially how there have been ones in PCG who have talked about looking forward to “bashing heads” in the coming Kingdom. (Read March 27, 2012 letter: “Government is a Big Subject in PCG“) That sounds real nice.
None of the Trumpet articles online even begin to touch on all the cruelty, harshness and abuses that are said to reside inside the doors of PCG. Only those who have experienced it can testify of it.
What Wasn’t Brought Out
No mention in this article about having peace. John 14:27 where Jesus said, “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” This peace comes from God.
SF also did not mention that God will never, ever forsake us. (Hebrews 13:5)
Or that nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus. (Romans 8:38-39)
The emphasis should be on those many promises, not living our lives according to how PCG spells it out.
There is nothing wrong with looking at O.T. passages about not about not being afraid such as:
“Whenever I am afraid, I will trust in You.” (Psalms 56:3 NKJV)
“I sought the LORD, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.” (Psalms 34:4)
But it is placing our faith and trust in Christ as our Savior and walking with Him that enables us to live our lives without fear, not striving somehow to be “courageous” and “fearless” as we wind down the road that ends up being just as fearful as before.
By D. M. Williams
Exit & Support Network™
Note: As of April 2021, Stephen Flurry was dean of students at Armstrong College in Edmond.