During my years of Bible study while in the WCG, I memorized hundreds of scriptures that I was led to believe proved that our doctrines were true and that others must be in error. I also noticed scriptures the WCG did not believe and this caused me some concern. I sent some of these scriptures up for questions during some of our studies conducted by our ministers and they would not discuss them. I recall there is one verse that I asked, “Does this verse mean what it says?” The one word response was, “No.”

Scriptures that were not believed by the Worldwide Church of God (WCG) were referred as “difficult scriptures.” I decided to believe them and that expelled the difficult part.

After far too many years and great difficulties caused by the spiritual and emotional abuse I suffered, I separated from the WCG. Great changes had been made in doctrines and while I had no problem with doctrinal corrections, I could not see that Jesus was involved with this in any way.

In the years following my departure from WCG I found there are other ministries that understand the Bible far more clearly than did the leadership under Herbert Armstrong.

I did find another church (not a WCG splinter) and attended it for awhile. I noticed in their Sunday School classes that all the Scriptures I had memorized were just as good with them as anywhere else, and I brought them up in our classes as backups for what the teacher was going over with us. I strongly feel there were some really true Christians there, but the leadership that came along later was not Christ-centered.

However, I noticed, as many other former members have, that Bible study became very difficult after God freed me from the WCG. I didn’t study for at least several years. The way we studied it under bondage was detrimental to continuing study after being freed from being tied to the law rather than grace. It took me some time to get back to it and study it for what it actually teaches.

While in WCG, I’d study chapters in the Old Testament that had laws about tithing, the Ten Commandments, offerings, sacrifices, the priesthood, the temple, fabric mixes, clean and unclean meats, weekly and annual Sabbaths, and on and on. I spent hours trying to figure out how some of these laws were required of us in this age and some were not. These chapters certainly did not separate them in any way and there was no clue as to how to scripturally select which ones applied under a New Covenant. You can see the great difficulty this caused in my studies.

Bible study became quite different for me when I began to get back to it. Freedom from bondage to the Law allowed me to fully accept the provisions of the New Covenant and to lay the old covenant aside, except for comparisons and to understand what Jesus has done for us through his death and resurrection.

I am enjoying my freedom in Jesus Christ and the understanding of the Bible for what it teaches. I also deeply appreciate the great ministry in which you (ESN) are serving those who have made the very difficult choice to depart from the teachings of a man and his followers.

By Will

 

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