Thank you for your web site and the help that it has provided. You must realize that there are many people like me who have relied on it, but never written in. It has helped me cope over the years, as it was a slow process for me to realize how deceived I was. I kept thinking, “Surely not the Worldwide Church of God and Philadelphia Church of God,” but no matter how I tried to put the pieces of the puzzle together over the years, they just wouldn’t fit. Just look at the wrecked lives of many people in the name of religion.
Also, look at the crème de la crème of students and faculty who went off in their own directions. They were given everything to succeed on a silver platter, literally. If the best that could be produced by Ambassador College and taught by Herbert Armstrong failed, not holding together, there was definitely something wrong!
I left the WCG in 1992 for the PCG and was there for about 7 years. I began noticing certain things behind the scenes also that should have raised red flags after shortly being in there. One thing about human nature that I didn’t understand then was that you can truly believe you’re right, willing to die for it, and yet be wrong. I deceived myself by not accepting clear facts in front of me because they didn’t fit with what I had been taught. I came to conclusions based on my own bias that “the church” was always right.
The facts clearly showed that Gerald Flurry’s church was based on a faulty foundation. I heard him with my own ears say no one knew any of “his” Malachi’s Message before he published it. That was untrue along with many other statements he has made…all of which are documented.
We all were taught to look at the fruit of any situation or thing to determine if it is good or bad. The PCG was, and clearly is, bad fruit. But that leads to a more profound question. What tree produced the PCG and other faulty fruit? As I looked, it was clear that the tree it came from had to have been corrupt to start with. Can a good tree produce corrupt fruit? There is overwhelming evidence to support this, but notice just one thing.
Think back on the purpose that was stated as the main job for the WCG. It was given over and over again. They pointed to Matthew24:14 and explained that this was what we were fulfilling. The context makes it plain that it’s referring to the end of this age with the dawn of a new age. Notice there is a direct relation between the preaching of the Gospel and the end of this age. When this is done, that will be done! These events are intricately tied together as a sign.
As the years have ticked away, that relationship is no longer viable if you believe the WCG accomplished their purpose. Why would that Scripture be there at all, unless it means what it describes? It loses its intended meaning as the decades fade behind. If you reason any other way, then the new age could come ten thousand years from now and it would still be theoretically accurate. But then, where would the intended direct relationship be?
When a business or organization’s purpose has not been what was advertised, that business will go out of business–and so it did. A work of man will always come to nothing and others will try to build on any piece of that faulty foundation, even a name, if they see any benefit for themselves in it.
I still fully believe in God and always will, but I have come to the realization that because I was deceived for nearly 40 years, I could never follow another man just to be deceived again. Yes, I agree with you that these are just groups hiding under the “facade” of the word “church.”
The word church connotes “power,” which they readily use. They simply use people any way they can. As a deacon in the PCG, I saw evil first hand in many cases from widows that were promised help to tapes and information that was to be destroyed and withheld, not to mention “the spying.” I am still recovering from the damage they did to this day.
While I lost all my friends (we could only have friends who were in the group, under their rule) your site has always remained a steadfast refuge for me. As I read it, I think of these brave writers as “my friends” now.