The Painful Truth About The Worldwide Church of God

Email To The Editor
(Page 58)

(Mail from Kooks, Nuts and Loonies is on another page)


12/16/01

I was out surfing and found your site by accident. It's interesting. I just have a question for you. You talk about tithing on several pages, and mention a "third tithe" in a couple of spots. What is the "third tithe"? Does that mean there is a second and first as well? I know how several churches handle their tithing, but I've never seen that terminology used, as though there were donations levels or something.

Thanks,

-Don

REPLY:

The Worldwide Church of God was not satisfied with "guilting" just one tithe (tithe meaning a tenth) out of the gullible members, as most churches would be more than satisfied with. They had an insatiable lust for our money. And, this was not a tithe on your "net," what you would have left after deductions, but on your gross, before the feds, state, fica, medical insurance, 401k, etc. was subtracted. For instance, if you made $1000 gross a week, which most members never dreamed of making, instead of paying your tithes on what was left when you got your paycheck, which may be around $600 or less, you had to pay on the full $1000. So, instead of the church getting $60 of your money, they got $100 for one tithe. But it was all God's money and he was letting you keep all the rest, so you had better be careful not to steal from god.

Then the second tithe was to be saved all year long and used at the various Feast Days throughout the year. This could also be used for Offerings on these Feast Days but only to supplement what you were saving for a proper offering over and above these tithes. If, after the final Feast day of the year, you had any Second Tithe left over, you were to send that in to "headquarters" as excess second tithe. Oh, and I almost forgot, you didn't even get to start out with keeping the full Second Tithe. You had to send what they called a "tithe of the Second Tithe" to the cult so they would have enough money to run the Festivals. I guess they didn't make enough money off of the kickbacks that they got from the hotels that they made us stay at and told us we couldn't stay anywhere else. Now we know why they were so adamant about us not staying anywhere else. It was not for our good or the other member's good, it was for the money that they blackmailed out of those hotels.

The Third Tithe happened every 3 years in a seven year cycle. The third year and the sixth year you had to tithe the third tithe. This money was to go to the widows and orphans but it turns out that it went for Herbert W. Armstrong to distribute to his loyal henchmen to remodel houses, for jet fuel for Herb to fly to different European countries to try to get some help for his limp penis. Things like that.

Imagine trying to live on your $600 dollars, after taxes and deductions, when you then have to subtract another $300 dollars of tithes from it. Make $1000 and live on $300. And don't forget to save up a good offering that you would not be ashamed to "appear before God" with, for each of 7 holy days. And then there was the "building fund," special offerings, emergencies where Satan was attacking the church and more funds were needed, etc. It never ended. As I said earlier, it was an insatiable lust for our money.

We believed it. We did it. Crazy huh? All because of our desire to follow the bible or some twisted interpretation of it, so as not to displease god. That is what cults are all about. Ignorant people being misled by someone that says they know what god wants from us.

They proved it all out of the bible, but, then again, you can prove anything out of the bible. That's the beauty of it.

And it is all perfectly legal for despicable characters who have no more of an idea of what this hidden god wants from us than any of their members do but they have less moral integrity and fear of this "god" than the members they mislead.

Editor


Editor,

Just curious. I turned to the E-mail archives to the editor beginning at page one. Do I detect a philosophical change in your view of the Creator since 1997? It seemed you felt there was more of an active "relationship" possible back then. Lately I've gotten the impression you feel He's more like the long-gone Johnny Appleseed. Is that so? Any specific thread that lead you there? (assuming my observation's valid)

Ron

REPLY:

YOU WROTE:

Do I detect a philosophical change in your view of the Creator since 1997?


REPLY:

Yes. I have matured. Seems like you can't get from A to Z without going through a lot of other steps in-between. One conclusion takes you to another. I've had too many things that have happened to me in the past that had convinced me that I could see God's hand definitely in my life.

After reading so many books on religions and the human mind, seeing all the horrors that have gone on in the past and are going on this very minute, all because of "religion" and men trying to worship some god that wants them to obey him in certain peculiar ways, I have had it with any "god."

I tend to think that what I had interpreted as "interventions" or "miracles" are simply some kind of interconnection between all human beings. "The Holographic Universe," on the Good Books page, addresses this idea and it tends to make sense to me. It explains a lot of unexplainable things. When you think of all the odds against something happening, after it has happened, you just find your mind swimming, sometimes.

Just for example:

1. Meeting a person that I knew from a previous job in a parking lot where I was applying for a new job. She was able to tell me who to actually ask to talk to instead of just filling out an application. I got the job after being out of work for 7 weeks. I was there at 9:30am. She didn't normally get there at that time but had gone to visit her sick mother and got in 1.5 hours late. A minute earlier or later and we would have never met.

2. When we first joined the cult, I had to quit my job because of the Sabbath. My first wife was sick and dying at the time from ALS. Turns out that the job that I got seemed to have been miraculous too. They had been looking for someone for 3 months until I came along and they hired me on the spot with understanding of my religious delusions. It was the best job I would ever have in all my life. As long as I finished my work, I could leave early and get paid for a full day. This happened on most days. I was very good at what I did and could do my work in 4 or less hours and be gone most days. That is when there was work. I spent many, many weeks without going in at all and got full pay. I took this as intervention by god to help me to take care of my first wife. This lasted many years even after my wife died.

There were many, many other things that I interpreted as god in my life. They didn't stop after leaving the church but now, after many years and a lot of thinking, I don't give god the credit. The book mentioned above addresses the topic of "synchronicity." Many things happen to us that we can call "interventions" or "coincidences" or synchronicity. Everything being interconnected, as in the above book, explains a lot. For instance: We run into some "former" church friends in an alley in a tourist town, 200 miles away from home. Any number of things could have prevented this chance meeting. We were great friends in the church. Went through a lot. Hadn't seen them in years. Another year we met some neighbors of ours in another town in the same area. We saw them in a gift shop in one town and then later that night, in a town 10 miles away from there, we saw them again at the restaurant we ate dinner at. There was some kind of connection there that I can't explain.

What I also cannot explain is the obvious indifference of any god being to any sufferings. I watched my first wife waste away to nothing and finally die because she no longer had the strength to breathe any longer; this at 29 years of age. I know that this is nothing unusual. Most people's deaths are not easy. Death really stinks. It drives people to religion. They have to have some hope. They have to have some explanation for all the pain and suffering that they see. Religion gives them hope of at least a good life after death. ("God took them to a better place." "He's in heaven now." "God takes the good people first." Blah, blah, blah... ) Instead of religion making life better, it has made it worse. It has divided people as no other force could.

I watched what happened in Bosnia all in the name of religion. I watched the planes crashing into the WTC towers, all in the name of religion. I watched the inhumanity of religious people in Afghanistan, all in the name of religion. I watch the religious fanatic Jerry Falwell as he blames what has happened on those of us that do not believe as he does. Then, when he is caught with his beliefs showing, he tap-dances around and says we didn't hear him correctly or he was misquoted. What a bunch of crap. Then he "apologizes" for what he said but if he still believes it, is that a real apology? What he should have apologized for are his religious beliefs that truly do blame what has happened on all of us that do not accept his god. I watched a PBS show this past week called POV, that was about some Israeli children and some Palestinian children. They would get along but for religion.

So I watch all this murdering and blame placing, all in the name of god, and I see no godly intervention. No godly help. No godly caring in any of this. And I cannot accept that what I thought were interventions in my life were actually any kind of help from "god." After we first left the cult, I was still delusional. I was still looking for god in my life and still finding him in coincidences and synchronicities. What good is a god like that? I have finally reached the point where I no longer want a god in my life that will help me get a job but will let my wife die of ALS. I do not want a god in my life who will help somebody get a parking place but will let thousands of innocent people die in the WTC.

Basically, what it comes down to is that I have finally realized that there really is not any god that cares about mankind. There is only us. The only miracles that happen are those that we do for one another. I don't know whether to laugh or cry as I watch an Afghan, on TV, get his monthly supply of some kind of grain or food, from the good ol' USA, and lug it away on his back thanking Allah for it! Doctors, firemen, police, nurses, rescue workers, etc. all do the work and who gets the credit? Well, god, of course. So, if these humans were not doing the lifesaving work, would ANYTHING get done? I guess we know the answer to that.

I am not saying that there is no god. I can't believe that all the "creation" that I see, so intricate and interconnected and well thought out could have happened by accident. All I'm saying is that there is no evidence of a god that cares about us. That does not mean that there is no god that cares about us. It just may care more about letting things play out as they naturally would than It does about intervening and helping us. I have made the offer for anyone to try to prove to me that there is a god that cares but NOBODY has offered me any proof at all. I can only assume that, once anyone thinks about it, they really cannot come up with any proof either. Believe me, I would be more than happy to find some proof. Until then, I will have to go with what I can see and observe.

Editor


Editor, I've been searching for a name that would best describe my belief system. Deism is the one !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thanks, good site,

Charlie

REPLY:

 Thanks Charlie.

Deism solves a lot of the problems that can be found in religion.

Editor


12/23/01

All of the problems of the world are attributable to religion; man's attempt to define the unknowable. Religion divides, never unites. My god is better than yours. "I" possess the truth. Your religion is wrong. And it goes on and on. Religion paralyzes, it hinders growth, it keeps us at the level of children. Children believe in Santa Claus and adults have their messiahs. I was aghast that after the attack on the us by the Islamic right, instead of people seeing the negativity of religion, there was a rebirth of interest in myths. The shame of it all. The end of the world will be brought about by holding steadfast to religious arrogance.
When I started my journey of enlightenment, I was foremost anti-Christian, but after that day (9-11) I realized the enemy was greater. It was un-proveable wishful thinking. And the worst religion in the world prize goes to Islam. They are living in the 12th century, and the Moslems think it is their duty to stay there.
They should get off their knees and get to thinking on how to improve their lives instead of fantasizing 72 vestal virgins. If those suckers knew about reality, they would know that just one woman can make your head spin.72 ??????????? That is crazy!
Imagine if there is divorce in paradise and they have to pay alimony when one of their harem disagrees with the holy warrior and he wants out.(after all, it is a mans world and so shall be paradise) Women are just servants and a man is never wrong. I imagine if god was more proactive in mans affairs, "it" would forbid religion. There is no progress with it's presence. The world would still be flat, leeches would be used to cure our ills, ad infinitum.
Thanks for listening.
Charlie


Are you atheist? I don't think so. Do you belive in God? I think so.

Even demons belive and shake.

What and who' are you really?

I know you, injuried by the truth, THE PLAIN TRUTH!!, jelous and , above all, RESENTFUL.

Who are you working for? JESUITS PERHAPS. Enemys of the truth, fulfilled of every bile and embittered.

Poor your life, hadn't anything better to do with, than desacredite some body who has done more than you never will do in your insignificant and short life. Keep, keep going, so youll never could go back, and then perhaps you'll be happy with your missery.

abdiel garrido


12/25/01

The Worldwide church of God has a chapter, if you will, that meets in the church I attend. I don't know when the last time this site was updated was, but it should be. The have changed their views. The now practice out of the Bible, and are not killing anyone or any of this other nonsense. I have talked with many of them about their views, and most of them are not mentioned on this page. Please get your facts straight.

Thank you. Emily

REPLY:

Well. I guess you know a lot more about this cult than I do since you have "talked to" a few of the members. I guess my living in the cult for 25 years doesn't mean anything. I guess all the more than 700 pages written by numerous former members are completely wrong now that you have "talked to" some of the current members.

I don't know how I can make it any clearer than for you and everyone else to READ THE FAQ before you write to me. Is that too hard for you?

Now, since you didn't do it for yourself, let me direct you to the answers to your questions, which you could have read on your own and saved me the trouble of helping you through this. faq.htm #1, #2, #3, #17, #18, #32, #36,

Now, after you read my answers on the FAQ page, if you have any more questions or, if you think you know so much that you would like to disprove anything on my website, please do send them along.

Let me just say that nobody, neither minister or member, has even attempted to disprove anything on my site. It has been on the internet for four years. Now why do you, who were never even a member, think that you know so much about this church that you want to get in my face and tell me that I am wrong?  You might notice that even Garner Ted Armstrong's chief enabler and a so-called "minister," did not dispute anything on my website, other than to try to weasel around regarding some kind of technicality about the definition of a prophet.

Editor


For some reason, I occasionally order materials from WCG splinter groups (PCG, the former Global, etc) - namely, the free booklets, and I do read them. Mainly for amusement. (No, that's not all I read, don't worry.) For all the bad things I could discourse on regarding old Herbert's writings, he was (generally) fairly good at convincing the reader to accept what he said. The first chapter or so of every book or booklet of his is usually key, it feeds the reader with a list of assumptions that, if accepted, will make most of his later assertions and "proofs" seem valid. For example, in the first chapter of every edition of "The US & Britain in Prophecy", Herbert (or Allen) keep playing to nationalist thoughts of the reader by insisting that America and Britain "must" be referred to somewhere in the Bible - which, by itself, is a very questionable statement. But Herbert's followers and clones (Flurry, for example) are not so good at this technique and often have more glaring holes in their arguments.

The literature of the old WCG, coupled with the regulations of the church, the organization of its meetings, and the atmosphere produced among its members by all three factors would make for a fascinating study by sociologists and psychologists (Renehan had some interesting information along these lines in Daughter of Babylon, which I particularly enjoyed). Small wonder, then, in Malachi's Message, Flurry asserts strongly, "Mr. Armstrong taught us to avoid such educational areas as sociology, psychology, the world's theology and much of man's law." The very things that could destroy him.

Shawn


 Sir, I appreciate your site. A lot of people have been burnt. I read a lot about Armstrongism and the many events he prophesied which did not come true. I have seen where he got a lot of his info stolen from others, but there is one event which he alone seems to have gotten right and that is his "prediction" of the resurrection of the German nation to power after World War 2.

Can you shed any info on how he came to this conclusion.

Regards, William

REPLY:

William,

Well, it seems to me that that is a pretty general prediction, but it doesn't even appear to have happened. I don't see Germany ruling over Europe or even one other country, other than itself, at this time.

I would think that you could makes a lot of general predictions and, given enough time, have some of them come to pass eventually. Wouldn't you think that someone that predicted events, in the name of god, would be correct 100% of the time? I would or I would think that that person was a false prophet. What good is a  prophet that was only right 1% of the time (less than that in Herbert W. Armstrong's case)?

Editor


1/5/02

Dear Editor,

 Met with my brother in-law a few days ago and got to talking about "the church". He said that until recently that he kept waking up with nightmares about rivers of blood and dismembered body parts. I then realized that the worldwide church of god has really fucked up a lot of people's lives and some irreparably. My brother in-law was raised in the church but never became a baptized member and he was having nightmares decades later. What a legacy!

 Anyway this got me thinking about your site which I haven't visited for quite sometime, and I decide to explore it further. I am the author of: 'is proof irrefutable?" (Personal experiences p3, 2/10/00). I read an excellent article by Jim V. (Personal experiences p3, 10/25/01) which led me to the 200 plus false predictions by Ha. This troubled me for sometime! How had I been so completely stupid to have ignored this?

In my mid to late teens I started attending "the church" around 1973-74. I had heard of some of the false predictions (I never knew there was so many, did he ever get a prediction correct?). We were told to burn booklets (why burn books inspired of god?) that I had never read. Now the holy spirit is supposed to be that of a sound mind. I certainly wasn't being led by any holy spirit by ignoring these (obvious to any sound mind) facts. I fact, on reflection I wonder about my sanity at the time.

What was Armstrong thinking? If at first you don't succeed then try 200 more times again until you do? The fact that Armstrong claimed to be led of God and he was able to ignore all of his false predictions certainly points to the fact that he was running a scam and he knew it!

 What about church doctrines?

 Armstrong, a man who claimed to be directly taught by god from the beginning was always coming up with new truths inspired by god. The only problem was that these new truths contradicted the old truths that god had already inspired. (consider doctrinal changes to healing, make-up, birthdays, Pentecost, divorce & remarriage.......). Apparently god founded "the church" on false doctrines and predictions for reasons god only knows. Apparently he was dealing with his servant in a completely new way to any other in the past. No wonder Ha thought of himself as special! Does this sound confusing and illogical? According to the bible god isn't the author of confusion! But Armstrong surely was!!

 Yes we were all taught Ha's church's government from the top down and to question anything was the lake of fire!, but surely no one could claim to be of a sound mind and to have ignored the obvious that we were being fed bullshit!

 When I first came along Ha was very quiet and Garner Ted Armstrong was calling most of the shots. Did Ha think he was going to be caught out with his 1972 prophesy?

When Garner Ted Armstrong was sent to learn his lesson from the devil (i.e. disfellowshipped) did Ha think Garner Ted Armstrong would learn his lesson more quickly if he paid him $200000 p.a. for the rest of his life (remember money is root of all evil) or was that cover up money to kept him quiet about his incest?

 If there is a god and there is a purpose for what we go through, then the lesson I've learnt is that how completely gullible that I can (hopefully never again) be. If there is no god then I learnt the same lesson.

 Anyway keep up the good work. I'm sure this site provides good therapy to those ex-members who need it. Not sure what it would do for someone who isn't associated with the church and found this site by accident!!

 Ex-member Australia


Dear Editor,

Just wanted to write after finding your site tonight. Not only am I an ex WWC member, but also ex WWC spin-off. Can you say spaceships? Ghastly!

I appreciate what you have written on your section, why.htm. My sentiments exactly on virtually every point. There's a certain freedom that comes with that mindset, and a very much welcomed freedom.

I have used several examples like yours for many years now: "I do not want a god in my life who will help somebody get a parking place but will let thousands of innocent people die in the WTC." Sometimes people look at me with pity after such a statement. That's their problem. Besides, how do the survivors of the WTC know that _He_ didn't just miss?

I have my mindset for many reasons, but for one in particular. There's nothing worse than having lost a child, and then hearing a very CLUELESS person make a statement like, 'Well, so and so survived a terrible car wreck. God really favored her and spared her life.' HELLO!!! Does that mean _God_didn't_favor my child and had _His_ reasons for taking him? Sorry, don't want any part of that kind of god.

Time and chance are my gods. Nothing more, nothing less.

It's been many years since my last association with the WCG. I have been 'to hell and back.' I think I will seek counseling even after all these years...maybe someone with a sympathetic shoulder who will let me know that I wasn't really crazy, just mislead.

Hope you are happy in your life now.

Regards,

EO13


I write to you RT (Believe in yourself first). My name is Don Miller and I to am a seeker of truth. I am a traveler by birth,a biker by choice,a Christian by need and believer by faith. I must say that I to have been hurt by the so called true churches.I have tried many different religions and systems ,but as I said I am a seeker so I did not give up.It all keep coming back to there being one true God, one power that started the whole thing. I found it's not the god that man our so called pastors,and Shepard s stand and cram down our throats with one hand and finger in our face and the other in our pocket.I found a God of love, peace,care,truth,kindness,miracles a true God of our time and all time.A GOD that will teach us his self . Just read Ezekiel 34 in Gods Holy Bible. It may help you to understand who these other guys are and know that God has his eye on them too.Please give it one more try don't count God by the standard of man who are lost in the doctrine of man and who have never even found the one true God. For if they had found him they would never do the things that they have done.you can find me at wordofgod4@yahoo.com ,it is OK to print any or all, please write if you feel I can help. YOURS IN TRUTH BROTHER DON MILLER ,PHELAN CA

REPLY:

 YOU WROTE:
 I write to you RT

REPLY:
What does that mean?

YOU WROTE:
and believer by faith.

REPLY:
That means you have not been able to prove what you believe. People who are willing to believe things without any proof are very scary to me.

 YOU WROTE:

I found a God of love, peace,care,truth,kindness,miracles a true God of our time and all time.

REPLY:
Well, since we have already established that you do not have any proof for what you believe, why do you believe in this god of love, peace, etc.?

I have been looking for 58 years and still have found no proof of a god that cares one little bit about mankind. I invite you to go to my Acts of God page and show me your god of love.

 YOU WROTE:
Just read Ezekiel 34 in Gods Holy Bible.

REPLY:
Prove that it is "God's" book.

 YOU WROTE:
it is OK to print any or all,

REPLY:
When you or anyone sends me a message, it belongs to me. You do not have to give me permission to use it.

YOU WROTE:
please write if you feel I can help.

REPLY:
Sorry, don't need any help. I have a comfortable and happy life. I am free of all religions and wish you could also find that freedom. Maybe you will if you could just quit worshipping that "book."

Editor


Hi there!

 After reading your extensive warnings about E Mail, one was not sure whether to E Mail or not! My wife and I were WCG members here in UK unmtil 1994, we left, I took a theology degree and am now a minister of Jesus Christ. I am not sure if you feel that is 'promoting religion' or not. Look, we and many others suffered because of the WCG but PLEASE, PLEASE the answer is not that there is no God; there most certainly is! You are welcome to visit our site for a glance. We have helped and will continue to help ex-WCG people here in UK but we are conservative evangelical Christians. The difference now is that I preach what the Bible really teaches!

Please do not give up on God!

May the Lord Jesus Christ bless you all. Museltof.

REPLY:

 Robin, I gather that you did not read the FAQ page. I can only assume that the people that write to me without reading the FAQ are not interested in what I really think but only in promoting to me what they think.

I have not said that there is no god. I say that there is no evidence of a god that cares about mankind. I would be interested in any proof you have other than in the bible, which proves nothing because it cannot stand on its own. Believers support the Bible because the Bible supports their beliefs. Bible believers do not worship a god, they worship a book. So, without using your book, prove to me that there is a god that cares about mankind. I will give you a whole page of your own and a link to your church's website. Just give me some proof. I won't be holding my breath.

Editor


Dear Editor (I wish you had given your real name.)


Your argument is actually fair enough; you state that you do not disbelieve in God but where is the evidence of a God who really cares about mankind? (Problem is yo say you want 'proof' -in this present life is there ever really 'proof' of anything which would convince all?? No, surely we want might be termed 'convincing evidence' - enough at any rate which might cause us to reconsider our position. As an intelligent man, you have (one presumes) now seen that evolution is a nonsense (re:the work of people like Michael Behe, Denton, the books of Phillip Johnson etc.) that edifice is surely soon to tumble! You want something which does not quote the Bible - I actually think that is a fair enough position! Look at family love, look at the love and consideration we develop for those close to us - if we now see evolution to be nonsense, where did that come from? You see suffering around us and say, 'How can there be a God who cares?' I say look at the good things; the love of music, the love of beautiful art, our hope dreams aspirations, the joy of watching our children grow. Yes, WE CARE - but where did that care come from? Why only consider the negative? What about the joy of accomplishing a good job which will benefit people? And then start to consider some of the causes of suffering; the envy, hatred, spite, malice, jealousy. Do we not see the work of a GREAT TEACHER who wants us to learn something? This is already too long for one E Mail and I don't send attachments. Can I get back to you in the future?


Robin

REPLY:

YOU WROTE:
(I wish you had given your real name.)

REPLY:
I did for quite a few years but I got sick of the death threats from your fellow Christians.

YOU WROTE:
Problem is yo say you want 'proof' -in this present life

REPLY:
Yes. This present life is all I have. If you want me to give it up to religion, then I need some proof, otherwise I will have to rely on my brain, which is the one thing that "god" has given me. Must we turn off our brains to worship your god? Apparently so.

YOU WROTE:
Look at family love, look at the love and consideration we develop for those close to us ...

REPLY:
That does not imply that the "love" is from any god that cares about us right now. If "love" was implanted in us by a god by programming our brains so that we would tend to love those who are close to us, that does not prove that that god is active in our lives. It only proves that we have the inborn capability to love. There are many animals that show "love" or devotion to each other.

YOU WROTE:
'How can there be a God who cares?' I say look at the good things; the love of music, the love of beautiful art, our hope dreams aspirations, the joy of watching our children grow. Yes, WE CARE - but where did that care come from? Why only consider the negative?

REPLY:
You are completely avoiding the question. Just because I love my family does not mean that there is a god that loves me. When my family is in trouble, I will help them. In that way, I prove that I love them. I see no evidence of any god doing that for anybody, anywhere. And, apparently you do not either or you would have come up with a better answer. I am not only considering the negative. I am looking around and using my brain to try to figure out what is going on. The positive that you speak of are things we do for one another. That does not prove there is a god that cares. If we were not doing all the positive things there would be no positive things happening.

 All I saw were firemen and policemen going into the WTC to save people. Even they didn't come out again. Your god could have held those buildings up a little while longer so the people could all be saved, but he didn't love them enough to do it. The firemen and policemen showed more love than your god. That does not prove that your god doesn't exist but it proves that you better not have a lot of confidence in this god, that it is going to help you when you need it.

YOU WROTE:
What about the joy of accomplishing a good job which will benefit people?

REPLY:
Yes, I do enjoy doing good to people. That doesn't prove that there is a god that cares. It proves there is a "me" that cares.

YOU WROTE:
Do we not see the work of a GREAT TEACHER who wants us to learn something?

REPLY:
No. We see a beautiful creation that is on its own. We see a world full of suffering and pain. No proof of any godly intervention at all. The proof is just the opposite of what you want to see. You look around at all the unanswered prayers and evil in this world and try to justify an uninvolved god by saying that the reason must be that we are supposed to be learning something from being deserted by the god we want to help us. Some of us are learning that we have no use for a god that hides himself and does not tell us plainly what he wants from us.

YOU WROTE:
Can I get back to you in the future?

REPLY:
I would rather not unless you can come up with some proof of this god of yours. I gather that you have already made your strongest point.

Editor


1/8/02
REPLY:

Hello again,

 No, I will not 'get back to you' , in your present mood since you are so angry and it is only going to make you more angry. There is anger and bitterness in your tone, perhaps it is not entirely surprising but I find you are not really listening to what one is saying. There is a lot more one can say even without quoting the Bible, sadly there is sometimes little point in saying it.

By the way nobody who is a Christian would make a death threat. If somebody has done that to you, then they are mentally deranged. If they have claimed to be 'Christian' then that is scandalous.

How can I convince you that I really care about you and yours? For the time being, there is probably no way.

 Robin

REPLY:

 Robin,

YOU WROTE: There is anger and bitterness in your tone,

REPLY: There is superiority and condescension in your tone. When it comes right down to not having a logical answer to a logical question, just use that ol' Christian catch-all condemnation of "bitterness."

YOU WROTE: By the way nobody who is a Christian would make a death threat. If somebody has done that to you, then they are mentally deranged.

REPLY: That is so ridiculous. Christians have been doing the killing for their god since the religion began. I might add that more people have been killed in the name of religion than any other cause.

Even in our revenge on the Taliban and bin Laden for the 9/11 attack, our nation calls on the name of the Christian God to bless us in our endeavor to kill our oppressors. "God Bless America" is the rallying call. He obviously has not blessed us by protecting us so we must call on his help to war against others.

One reason that Christianity is so popular today is not just because you can do whatever you want and Jesus will forgive you, it is that Christians have been so willing to kill those of differing beliefs.

You say that those that would make such threats are not true Christians if they do so. Well, all they have to do, once they even carry out the threat, is repent. Then they are right with god once again and the "troublemaker" is conveniently out of the picture.

YOU WROTE: How can I convince you that I really care about you and yours?

REPLY: That was never the question. The question is "Where is the evidence of a god that cares about mankind?"

Until you can answer that, your religion is a sham and you are misleading people. And, I say that because I care about you and yours. I care about your living in reality or delusion. Reality is much better. At least it is for "members" of churches. Now for leaders, or should I say misleaders, of churches, that is a different story because their lives are so much better because of their keeping people living in a mind numbing, religious delusion. As I have said before, a minister is one of two things: either just as stupid as the people that he is misleading, or a scam artist using fear, ignorance, laziness, and a desire of people to want to find "god" to make money and control gullible people. Unfortunately, there is no law against either one. Its a great scam and completely legal. What a country!

Editor


 I skimmed your site. I can fully understand your anger and feeling of betrayal by the Church. But it isn't God who betrayed us, it was Satan through some of the ministry. However, it is true that what they did does not change the Truth. Whether we or anyone else believes the truth or not, whether we or anyone else believes there is a God or obeys God or not, whether we or anyone else even does what we believe or not, does not change the truth. And logic dictates that there has to be a (only 1) truth. I was severely damaged as were my children during those days in World Wide, but the one thing I did learn was to follow God not man. I left the Church for 10 years. I wasn't even attending when the breakup occurred, didn't even know it had happened. But do you know that during those 10 years without the influence of the Church, I never once thought that the truth as not the truth. You see, what a human being does, does not affect my beliefs about God and what He wants anymore. It was only this year that I was finally able to let go of my anger and fully forgive others for what happened to me. I am still working on forgiving myself for being stupid enough to let Satan through men, not God influence me sooner. I have been attending United for about 2 years now. It grieves me when I see that the hurt and pain of the past has produced the negative attitudes between the past members of World Wide where ever they are or what ever they may be doing. Having learned the hard way, I can say that those negative attitudes are as destructive as those ministers who were influenced by Satan. (As a side bar here, I have not been counseling about how I feel or about my background, so please do not assume I am being influenced by ministerial counseling, as I am not. Where I am and how I feel and what I believe are from my thought out decisions, not others.) I keep my eyes on God not man. And in conclusion, I did check up on all the scriptures that were given and I have read the Bible from cover to cover more than just a couple of times. It still all makes sense to me. And stating in a different way what you said, in the end we will all know to a certainty what the truth is or we will be nonexistent and it won't matter anymore anyhow. You can or not use my name or can or not put this on your web site as you see fit. I just felt the need to say these things in response to what I read.

Thank you for your time,

Sheryl

 REPLY:

 Sheryl, Thanks for your message.

YOU WROTE: it was Satan

REPLY: Show me Satan. Prove that there is a being called Satan. It is a myth. Every bad thing that human beings do gets blamed on this imaginary personage. It is a complete fiction to excuse the evilness of mankind. The "Devil" isn't making us do anything, we do it all by ourselves.

YOU WROTE: Whether we or anyone else believes the truth or not, ........ does not change the truth.

REPLY: The truth is that you cannot PROVE that the bible is god's word.

The truth is that you cannot PROVE that there is a god that is involved with mankind.

The truth is that you cannot PROVE that there is any divine Truth from any god.

True things can all be PROVEN to be true. They are not proven by faith. They are not proven by wanting them to be true. They are not proven out of a very fallible book. They are proven by facts. So the facts are that you do not know what "TRUTH" is. The only truth that you can be sure of is that nobody has the REAL truth because no god has revealed it in an undeniable way.

YOU WROTE: but the one thing I did learn was to follow God not man

REPLY: That is good but if god is not communicating with you in an irrefutable way, then you cannot know how to follow It. Is it God that is talking to you or a book?

YOU WROTE: I never once thought that the truth as not the truth.

REPLY: I think what you mean is that you never changed your impression of what truth was. Even now, in the face of evidence to the contrary of what you want to believe, you will not change your mind. I do not find that to be an admirable trait.

YOU WROTE: I keep my eyes on God not man.

REPLY: Well, I would like to know where you can find this god so that you can keep your eyes on It? Take a look at my "Acts of God" page and tell me where god is.  Take a look at my "God Bless America" page and tell me where god was on 9/11. The fact of the matter is that there is no god that you can depend on for anything other than to stay completely out of your life. God is really good at that and you can trust that that will happen all the time.

If you think you are following a god, you are wrong. You are following a godly figment of your imagination that you have created in your own mind, or someone created there for you. You are not following any god that will help you or do anything for you. I know it gives you comfort to think that this god cares about you, but this make-believe god of yours helps me just as much as It does you. I have the same unexplainable mysterious coincidences happen to me as you do. I call them coincidences, you call them godly interventions or answered prayers.

Here is a little tip for you: put your bible down and go get some books to study ABOUT the bible and then use a little logic to see where it takes you. Find out the truth about this book and realize that you have been worshipping a book all along and not a god. And the book is not worthy of your worship.

YOU WROTE: You see, what a human being does, does not affect my beliefs about God and what He wants anymore.

REPLY: Let's see: The bible was written by human beings so I gather you are not getting your beliefs out of the bible. You must have a direct telephone line to this god of yours.

YOU WROTE: It grieves me when I see that the hurt and pain of the past has produced the negative attitudes

REPLY: You will grieve again when you come to the correct conclusion that all religion is a scam and that it wasn't just the WCG that put one over on you.

YOU WROTE: in the end we will all know to a certainty what the truth is or we will be nonexistent and it won't matter anymore anyhow

REPLY: Yes, but you will have wasted your entire life as a slave and I will have been free. At least I can say that, if there is a god, I don't think It is going to fault me for trying to use my brain to find It. It is not going to say to me: "Sorry but you should have blindly followed my one Minster, after you found the one that was the most dynamic and convincing at preaching the bible to you."

You said, there is only one Truth. If you believe this, you had better go through all the religions in the world, all the denominations within those religions and then all the different churches in those denominations, and then look for that one minister that is preaching the Truth. They are all different; they vary on their beliefs and teaching right on down to the last minister. Only one can have this Truth. If you don't find the right one, then you are not following the Truth. Is it your job to find this truth or be lost? Can you really stop looking just because what someone has said seems to be logical? You can't stop looking because, if you just look a little harder, you may find someone that will convince you that they have the real truth. Or is it easier to just stop looking and make believe that you have the real Truth already and save yourself a lot of trouble?

Is it really the duty of the lost child to find the parent? If god wanted us to worship It, don't you think that It would have given us irrefutable proof of what It wanted? Well, I think so. And, there is no irrefutable proof. There is no proof that God does anything for us or that God wants anything from us.

YOU WROTE: I just felt the need to say these things in response to what I read.

REPLY: Me too. Good luck in your search for Truth.

Editor


 Dear Editor,

 I sincerely respect how you have brought forth your views of God and have asked some of the penetrating questions that many people (including myself) are asking in these troubling times "Why would a god who supposedly cares about humanity allow horrible things to happen i.e. WTC, wars, etc?", "Where is God now?" "Why doesn't He just reveal Himself?" I admit the answers to these questions are not simple also I understand the only way you will be satisfied is with solid proof that God really is at work in the world. I know this will not make much difference, nonetheless I can tell you right now, with all the sincerity of my heart, that God has done incredible works in my life and has answered every one of my prayers. However, I understand that that is not the kind of evidence you need, and therefore, to meet your call for evidence I present you with another challenge: Send me a list of things that I can pray about for you, and if the situation has not changed with every single one of them within a week, I will send a message and recant all of the above.

 Jordan

  REPLY:

 YOU WROTE: Send me a list of things that I can pray about for you, and if the situation has not changed with every single one of them within a week, I will send a message and recant all of the above.

REPLY:
Jordan,

Thanks for your offer. I surely won't waste any answered prayers on myself.

I will not ask you to get all of these from your god, just have him do one. You can pray for them all or just kind of zero in on one of them that you think may have a better chance of happening. I hesitate to make it too hard for your god, but, for a good god, nothing can be too hard.

1. A cure for cancer.

2. God will actually reveal himself to all humanity in an undeniable way and will actually communicate to all humanity, so that all can understand, what exactly It wants from us, if anything, or nothing.

3. God will prove, in an undeniable way, to everyone, that the Bible is His Word.

I got some help from some members of the PT Forum:

4. How about if this guy can pray and raise my oldest son from the dead? Jeeeezus got Lazarus to come back to life--why not my son? That would be a real miracle! I promise I'll let the forum know if it happens. AnnMarie (We will assume that god knows who AnnMarie is.)

5. Ask Him to pray for the total and complete dissolution of the WCG in the year 2002.
 Terri

(Note to Mark: Since this has to be done in the next seven days, you only have seven days, not a whole year.)

6. Ask the fellow if he can pray God into having Ron Goff (of Pekin Illinois) believe in Christ or at least remove the demons that are keeping me from belief and salvation. If it's the truth, c'mon! Bring it on! I'm on my knees smiling, arms spread out. Let me know what time and date he's going to do it and I'll assume the position again. (I'll wipe the smile off if that's required)
Your Friend, Ron

7. Actually... I would ask him to pray to make a demon really really appear in front of me!!! I'd love to see one, up close and personal-have an evening to chat-I have had a standing invitation for years to any of them that would care to come for tea. None has bothered yet. I wonder if a little "Prayer Persuasion" would help this?
Skeet

8. How about the WCG will own up to all the sins of the past, and, in true repentance, disband the church, distribute all the money that is left to all past members and not give any golden parachutes to the "leaders."

So, you have a week to fulfill one of these prayers or your god is not God and you reject all that you have believed about Him. You also admit that you were wrong about "that God really is at work in the world". You are now convinced that god is not at work in this world.

I have to wonder, since you feel your prayers are so effective and all are answered, why you didn't help all those people, and the firemen and policemen, escape from the WTC? Why don't you help get bin Laden captured? Why not have Castro die or be overthrown? Why not have Saddam Hussein die a miserable death before our boys have to go over there and die to do it? (God has done it to people in the bible.) Why don't you empty hospitals of sick people? Why don't you heal children with terrible diseases? Why don't we have world peace if all you had to do was pray about it? I could go on but I tend to think that you can only get very "general" prayers answered and not specific ones. Something like: "and god bless so and so" or "please comfort the people that had relatives in the 9/11 attack" things that cannot be proved to have happened or not happened.

And, the question still remains of why god would answer some miniscule prayer of yours but let thousands of women be raped as they are praying to him for help. Surely all of them cannot be sinners and not worthy to have a prayer answered. What about all the little children who are victimized by some sexual deviant, such Herbert W. Armstrong? Is it just that they have not learned the proper way to pray to this god? Were the hundreds of AC college coeds, bad people and deserving of being victimized by Garner Ted Armstrong? If they had only had you there to pray for them, then everything would have turned out just fine.

You have some specific things to get done. The opinion is that you will not get a one answer and you will weasel out of your "recant."

Editor

 REPLY:

Dear Editor,
It was wrong of me to put a timetable and restricitions on God, because we are accountable to Him, not He to us. Not all of what humanity considers fair is an issue with Him. You have already stated in your web site that you believe that you were created by "a god", so how can we possibly put restrictions on something that created us? Although He is sovereign over every one of your requests, even the ridiculous ones (although nothing is impossible with Him), it was unwise of me to challenge you, simply because He is not my belonging, I am His belonging, and He does not have to answer prayers on our schedule. It is not my place to challenge you like I have done, and expect God to abide by my rules and my restrictions. He could fix all the problems in the world that you have listed below in one week if it was His will, but it is justifiably perhaps not His will to fix everything. We as humanity have done all this crap in the world ourselves, and why should a just God bail us out? The fact is, I can't prove Him to you, only He can. I will not recant my beliefs simply because you did not abide by my rulesyou did not give me a list of needs in your life.
Jordan
p.s. I would appreciate it you be careful in the future of whom you call "Christians" on your web sitemany people may claim to be Christians but really have know idea what a Christian is.
 REPLY:

Jordan,

You were so predictable. You put your god on the line and then you knew he wouldn't be there for you. We knew you would weasel out of your commitment. You are so afraid of losing what you think is your salvation that you turn your brain off. I have news for you: You have your brain turned off and your "salvation" is imaginary. You are living in a dream world and deep down inside you know that your dream god is not going to do anything for you.

You have proven that you do not trust your god and that you do not have any prayers answered. From now on, your god will not answer any of your prayers because you have shamed him in the eyes of unbelievers. You had a chance to convert so many of us to your wonderful religion but you lacked faith. Without faith you can do nothing, and that is what you have done. NOTHING. I think it is you that doesn't know what a real Christian is.

Now no cancer will be cured. No loved son raised from the dead. No person converted to Christ. No proof that the bible is god's word. No proof that God wants anything from anyone. No dissolution of the WCG. No demons appearing to an unbeliever who is not afraid of them. No WCG owning up to its sins. All this lost on a technicality. Are you proud of that? Is your god proud of you?

And you know what? It was because I didn't want to selfishly waste any answered prayers on myself. I wanted others to benefit just in case you could actually get your god to answer your prayers. I didn't want to selfishly ask for things for myself. The bible does say that god does answer prayers. Why do you lack faith? You have had SO MANY prayers answered but when the chips were down, you collapsed. You were impotent and so is your god.

Well, so much for you defending your weak, useless, imaginary god.

Editor


 Dear Editor,

Met with my brother in-law a few days ago and got to talking about "the church". He said that until recently that he kept waking up with nightmares about rivers of blood and dismembered body parts. I them realized that the worldwide church of god has really fucked up a lot of people's lives and some irreparably. My brother in-law was raised in the church but never became a baptized member and he was having nightmares decades later. What a legacy!

Anyway this got me thinking about your site which I haven't visited for quite sometime, and I decide to explore it further. I am the author of: 'is proof irrefutable?" (Personal experiences p3, 2/10/00). I read an excellent article by Jim V. (Personal experiences p3, 10/25/01) which led me to the 200 plus false predictions by Ha. This troubled me for sometime! How had I been so completely stupid to have ignored this?

In my mid to late teens I started attending "the church" around 1973-74. I had heard of some of the false predictions (I never knew there was so many, did he ever get a prediction correct?). We were told to burn booklets (why burn books inspired of god?) that I had never read. Now the holy spirit is supposed to be that of a sound mind. I certainly wasn't being led by any holy spirit by ignoring these (obvious to any sound mind) facts. I fact, on reflection I wonder about my sanity at the time.

What was Armstrong thinking? If at first you don't succeed then try 200 more times again until you do? The fact that Armstrong claimed to be led of God and he was able to ignore all of his false predictions certainly points to the fact that he was running a scam and he knew it!

What about church doctrines?

Armstrong, a man who claimed to be directly taught by god from the beginning was always coming up with new truths inspired by god. The only problem was that these new truths contradicted the old truths that god had already inspired. (consider doctrinal changes to healing, make-up, birthdays, Pentecost, divorce & remarriage.......). Apparently god founded "the church" on false doctrines and predictions for reasons god only knows. Apparently he was dealing with his servant in a completely new way to any other in the past. No wonder Ha thought of himself as special! Does this sound confusing and illogical? According to the bible god isn't the author of confusion! But Armstrong surely was!!

Yes we were all taught Ha's church's government from the top down and to question anything was the lake of fire!, but surely no one could claim to be of a sound mind and to have ignored the obvious that we were being fed bullshit!

When I first came along Ha was very quiet and Garner Ted Armstrong was calling most of the shots. Did Ha think he was going to be caught out with his 1972 prophesy?

When Garner Ted Armstrong was sent to learn his lesson from the devil (i.e. disfellowshipped) did Ha think Garner Ted Armstrong would learn his lesson more quickly if he paid him $200000 p.a. for the rest of his life (remember money is root of all evil) or was that cover up money to kept him quiet about his incest?

If there is a god and there is a purpose for what we go through, then the lesson I've learnt is that how completely gullible that I can (hopefully never again) be. If there is no god then I learnt the same lesson.

Anyway keep up the good work. I'm sure this site provides good therapy to those ex-members who need it. Not sure what it would do for someone who isn't associated with the church and found this site by accident!!

Ex-member Australia.

Ps.I know it's rude not to provide you with my name, but I would hate anyone to discover that I was mentally unstable for so long. Would you like someone with a wcg background teaching students?

REPLY:

Yeah, we were crazy, but not crazier than religion in general. Some religions are just more popular than others. The more people that believe something, the less crazy it is. And then they label those that don't accept their beliefs, without any proof, as the crazy ones.

Editor

REPLY:

Good point, but it didn't or doesn't cost as much in $ etc!!
Did your bible quiz. Only got around the average (16.7), however that's only because I couldn't complete any more than that many questions. Found I didn't have much interest in answering biblical bullshit. Either cut down on the number of questions or offer monetary rewards if you want a true indication of how much we were brainwashed!


Read your FAQ section and I was impressed with your responses. Could you provide me with some general information about yourself? Position in church, when you joined, what you do for a living etc..

REPLY:

Any info on me should be available from the FAQ page, Question #1.

Regarding the Bible Quiz: Its not my quiz. I just link to it. I have to admit, it was a real challenge to finish it and be thinking about all that biblical BS. I just wanted to show that I am not ignorant of what the Bible says. I know it as well as some and better than most, if you take into consideration most of the people in Christianity in general. I don't reject it because I don't understand it. I reject it because I do understand it.

Editor

REPLY:

Editor,

I read your self info. On healing, and am reminded of a story about a righteous man who lived near a river. One day a radio message warned him that he would be flooded out and he needed to evacuate his home, he however ignored this and thought that God you save him. The police came around and told him to go, but once again he ignored this because God would save him. Any way the flood came and he was forced to climb onto the roof of his house. A boat came along and offered to rescue him, but once again he relied on god to save him. The water kept rising and a rescue helicopter came along but again he preferred to rely on God. Anyway eventually he drowns, on getting to heaven he queries God as to why he didn't save him. God replied I sent you 2 warnings and 2 rescue vehicles, what more did you expect me to do?


That's how I always approached the subject of healing when I was in the church. Maybe I came in a bit later and the subject wasn't as strict, but when I read the bible it said you shall not tempt God. I believed that. I believed to ask God to preform a miracle of healing in the manner taught by the church by ignoring medical attention was to tempt god! Maybe I wasn't as "converted" as you but I glad I at least was able to think to some limited sense for myself!


Using this method I may have experienced some miraculous healings which I can't discount some 20 years later, however it could have been coincidence!


Yes, I believe you can disprove HWA's religion, you cannot prove there is a God, but neither can you disprove there isn't.


Anyway just some thoughts you might find interesting.


I stumbled across your website by accident and it has provided me with no end of amusement. In the late sixties, I was working at a TV station in Austin, Texas. I had a roommate that was a fellow engineer there that had become a WWCG member. He subsequently went to work at the TV facility in Pasadena. Another engineer was also a member. I went round and round with both of them.

I was well along the Shining Path to Atheism at the time and greatly admired Herbert W. and Garner Ted for their showmanship. It looks like that Falcon Jet that Garner Ted used to fly is a Hanger Queen these days. The Jew Phideas T. Barnum must have trained them both. Galileo and the Catholic Church gave me a nudge and Madalyn Murray gave me a kick toward salvation.

Keep up the good work of deprogramming the former members. Remember the quote of the famous French Atheist Voltaire: "The first clergyman was the first sly rogue that encountered the first fool". All televangelists are hypocritical Atheists.


 Dear Editor

I read with interest the latest email by Mary G.

I am an Armstrong survivor, trying to put the pieces back the last 2years or so (BANKRUPT in too many ways).

Anyway, I think the Armstrong episodes are finally starting to dissapear, judging by your site pretty much slowing down; I guess it is only the die-hards who remain in the splinter groups etc.

There are a number of things that should be clear by now:

1) regardless of what people believe, religion has many problems that's undeniable, esp the experiences of many "christians".

2) the bible CANNOT be an "inspired" book. This is quite easy to show.

Today christians argue about their beliefs according to the bible, BUT they forget that since AD1 bibles were not available! Only in the last 2 hundred years were bibles available in the true sense, and only since the 20th century did people really start getting into arguments.

The church/es TOLD people what the bible said, since many could not read. And 2 thousand years ago, people did not simply march into a book store to get the latest copy of the bible what did christians argue about for 1800 years?

The canonization of the bible is a study in itself. WHO decided what the bible must look like? Was it god? History tells us that it clearly was NOT god who decided what books go in and what do no tit was men! This is a clear contradiction how can a book which has been fought over for so long be "inspired"? This is of course not to mention all the different versions that we have of the bible today.

The editing aspects, and historic aspects of the canonization of the bible are conveniently ignored but this makes no sense according to the bible itself, god wrote onto the tablets for Moses clearly this is a type of "inspiration", because god wrote it... and later, apparently there was the book of the law, which was apparently also inspired by god... this is a story, BUT we have no evidence of a similar type of inspiration today men simply decide what goes in and what doesn't this MUST mean that at minimum, the book is a compilation by the attempts of MEN, which is of course a contradiction according to the beliefs of many Christians they believe the bible on "faith".

When I was in the WWCoG, the ministers loved to push the King James Version: Yes brethren, the KJV is the BEST, because of the people's attitudes in trying to be as accurate as possible etc etc... BUT the point is that god did NOT tell King James to go and compile the last new improved version; the KJV is therefore clearly NOT inspired.

The WWCoG conveniently FORGOT to mention that the original KJV included the Apocrypha, which today is generally not accepted as being inspired, including the WWCoG. So they push the "inspired" KJV, and forget to mention about the UNINSPIRED Apocrypha.

ALSO they forget to mention that King James himself was GAY What a contradiction. King James is "inspired" to produce a new improved version of the bible, a book which is clearly AGAINST homosexuality! It just doesn't make sense!

Much more can be said here, but you get the point!

3) Deja Vu!

My parents were never in the WWCoG.

BUT they have had their own religious upheavals every couple of years since I can remember recently my mother told me that that my father's church had declared her an "unbeliever" of course they go to different churches. But it sounds very much like WWCoG; one group is more superior than another, so they simply declare the other an "unbeliever". What is important to note here is that my parents never had any SPECIAL POWER to get along with each other; another contradiction of christianity. (The book they both say they believe in says "love one another" etc etc).

4) Christianity today does not tie up with what the book says anyway!

When I was in the WWCoG, the "true" church, I questioned certain things, such as miracles and healing etc etc... I never could understand WHY when we had the superior DOCTRINE of the passover (healing etc), why the heck was nobody healed in gods true church????

They told us to pray I did didn't make ant difference to anybody's life then they said we prayed incorrectly, and must not pray for ourselves etc etc. I made up prayer lists of people who were sick... kept them on the list till they were "healed" well they never were!

Clearly, there was no healing and no miracles in the true church of god !!!

Even though the book they believed in clearly stated that christ's followers would do greater miracles than christ himself!

Today, if I mention the subject of healing, to any religious nut, I am immediately stoned! I am accused of being a happy clappy etc etc No I am NOT a happy clappy. Christ healed, according to the book, so why don't christ's followers heal? How can you be a follower of someone, and not emulate that person? If there really ARE christ's followers, they MUST be able to perform miracles, heal, raise the dead etc., because that's what the book says!

5) Illusions

The WWCoG was an ILLUSION people thought they were especially called by god, but they weren't! Other christian groups have the same problem I call it the MOSES SYNDROME. People imagine they see god in a burning bush, but it is their imagination!

My own father, a few years ago imagined he was called by god to do a special work he WASN'T. Long story short he ended up bankrupt, my brothers and family had no money etc etc... eventually, my father wised up and started working a normal 9-5 job again!

Point is: it was an illusion!

At one stage my parents got involved in speaking in tongues and so on; as Armstrong said, it was an ILLUSION they soon left that church and looked for another but for a while my parents had the illusion that because they spoke in tongues they had the truth point there were no LASTING changes of any kind, they still moaned and bitched about each other year in and year out... every now and then going to the same church, and every now and then splitting...

Anyway, these are my thoughts after reading Mary G's letter.

One more thing: when people start accusing you, even IF their judgment is correct, this in no way changes the FACTS!

People loved to accuse me: I'm negative, I'm critical, it's not so bad, why don't you relax etc...

IT'S JUST FIDDLING WHILE ROME BURNS THE PLAIN TRUTH IS: WHEN YOU TELL THE PLAIN TRUTH, PEOPLE WILL HATE YOU FOR IT THAT'S THE TRUE GOSPEL

Regards, AB


1/19/02

 Hello, I must admit first off, that I only skimmed your article, but intend to read it when I have more time. I was in the WWCG for about 10 years from 1985 to 1995, and can sympothize with much of what you said, though I really dont hate it the way you seem to. I know from words and limited experiences, that many lives were ruined because of this group that followed "Armstrongism". My life wasnt "ruined" in that way, but I missed out on so many things: good jobs lost or never gotten because of the Sabbath, girls I wanted to date, but couldnt because they weren't baptizedor I wasnt a member of Ambassador College. (That rule really sucked!) LOL

*But Fair is fair, and this is just my opinion (I won't try to change yours) there was a lot of good for me that came out of the whole thing as well. I learned about the bible in ways I never would have at another "church". I met some pretty good friends that are friends today (none of us still in the organization of course..) But to make a long story shortit wasnt all bad, and I dont hold any grudges against it. From what you wrote that I've read so far, it seems that you were in the worst times there could have been for someone growing up in the "church". I knew several minister's kids that had a hell of a time dealing with reality from being so sheltered. In my opinion, getting burned by evil and pain, and then deciding to willfully avoid itis the entire point God is simply trying to make to us as people.

I did my time in the "church", and learned a lot from it, but it wasnt until after I left, that I really started learning: I had to discard a lot of what I was taught before, but some of it became rather a foundation with which I feel God used to start building the real thruth on. The first truth I learned when I left was that the WWCG was not the "church" started by Jesus, but rather just another organizationlike any Sunday church. and so it went from there, and I/(or rather God) began building toward real understanding. I left in 95. Today, I dont (and will not) attend any "church" I already AM part of THE true spirit-lead church that God started 2k years ago. I was called before the WWCG and I am called after it. Your the same if you choose to be, if you once recieved God's spirit/calling.

I'm sorry that you went through all of thatI wont pretend to understand. All I can say, is that everyone in life, as you know, has rotten and hateful experiences that they want to forgetmyself includedyours just happened to be with a group called the Worldwide Church of God. Perhaps one day (and I mean no disrepect) you can move past it, and on with your life to accomplish so much more than posting your hatred on a web-site. By continually acknowleging the WWCG for good or badyou continue to keep focus on it. I no longer think about it myselfI have better things to put my energy into.

Take care, and best of luck in your goals and desires. I hope (from the care of one human to another) that they find you happy in the end.

REPLY:

YOU WROTE:
I only skimmed your article

REPLY:
Which one? There are more than 700 articles on the site.

YOU WROTE:
I really dont hate it the way you seem to.

REPLY:
I guess we all have different levels of what is right and wrong. Yours
appears to be at a lower standard than mine.

YOU WROTE:
many lives were ruined because of this group that followed

REPLY:
Seems to me you are belittling that fact.

YOU WROTE:
I learned about the bible in ways I never would have at another
"church".

REPLY:
You learned ways to make a book, that is obviously not inspired by any
god worth worshipping, say what you want it to say.

YOU WROTE:
getting burned by evil and pain, and then deciding to willfully avoid
it- is the entire point God is simply trying to make to us as people.

REPLY:
No. You, since you cannot make any sense out of all the evil and pain
in this life where we receive absolutely NO help at all from god,
simplify it and give your inadequate god an out by saying he must be
teaching us something. The fact is that this god is not doing a damn
thing for anyone. I would be interested in any proof at all that you
have of any god that cares about mankind. Before you rack your brain
too much, let me tell you that there is NO proof. The only proof is
for a god that is not involved with mankind at all. Now, you can spew
your "bitterness" allegations at me but at least I can prove what I
believe. The god that I acknowledge gave me a brain and I think it
expects me to use that brain and not rely on faith in an error-filled
book. You can only believe in that book when you are willing to turn
your brain off.

YOU WROTE:
The first truth I learned when I left was that the WWCG was not the
"church" started by Jesus,

REPLY:
Here is the first "truth" for you: prove that there ever was a Jesus.
You cannot do it in any reliable way. And saying "reliable" eliminates
the bible as a source.

YOU WROTE:
I already AM part of THE true spirit-lead church that God started 2k
years ago. I was called before the WWCG - and I am called after it.

REPLY:
Earth to Mark. Earth to Mark.
You have no proof at all of this. You only believe it because you
"want" to believe it. People who will believe things without proof are
very scary to me.

YOU WROTE:
Perhaps one day (and I mean no disrepect) you can move past it, and on
with your life to accomplish so much more than posting your hatred on
a web-site.

REPLY:
Since policemen have to deal with dirty rotten people, I guess it
would be better for all of us if they would just all quit. And those
history book authors, well, they are all just bitter. Wish they would
just move on with their lives and not be telling people all that nasty
truth about the past. So what if the evil people will continue to take
advantage of good people? Mark wants the historians to just move on
and quit writing those awful books. I suppose you think that the
firemen going up the stairs of the WTC were fools and should have been
running away with the rest of the crowd.

Let me just tell you this: It is not your Jesus that is helping
people, it is people that are helping people. And, if you don't have
the time or desire to do it, other people
do. I don't need religious idiots taking potshots at me while they sit
on their asses and expect an ineffective, uninvolved god do the work
for them.

YOU WROTE:
that they find you happy in the end.

REPLY:
Well, I'm quite happy right now, thank you. As long as I can keep
enlightening people as to the fallacy and deception of all religions,
I will continue to be happy.


Hi Editor:
Saw your insert on the Arthur Anderson Co. Velly inteeeerrressting!
Sorry I can't give any more info than I have, but I'm still angry with the Feds. There's billions in taxpayer dollars going down the tube every year in the name of "God." And the Feds are in a much better position than we are to stop all this robbery. But, as we saw in 1979, government can be vulnerable to "Christian" pressure too.
As we've all seen, you don't need to be anybody, just a good salesman to get the so-called ministerial credentials. Then you incorporate, get your tax exempt status, and go to work ripping off honest people who are trusting.
I'm sure that these auditors and (richly paid for) accounting companies are well compensated for their chicanery.
Best 4 now. John.


I have spent years turning religious thoughts over in my head. I have spent hours and hours arguing with religious people about various beliefs. Gradually I have come to various conclusions (but since they are ideas about an entirely theoretical subject, they are constantly evolving). It was quite a shock to see so many of the same ideas, thought processes, and evaluations posted in a website. You're webpage was enjoyable reading for me.

Just for kicks, here's an interesting (or so I think) concept for you to kick around. I read a series of books (fantasy types) that dealt with gods who had actual power (walked the earth smiting people and all that good stuff.). However, as they grew more cocky and aloof, they spent less time with people. As they spent less time with people, the people began to have less and less faith in them; people began to believe in them less. As this happened, the gods lost power and eventually disappeared. Could it be, since matters taken on faith cannot be disproven or proven, that as along as an individual believes in a god, then for that individual, for all practical purposes, a god exists? (a wordy sentence) After all, it doesn't matter if there is a monster under the bed or not, as long as a kid believes there is one, he'll be scared to go to the bathroom.

I have a quick story that is probably only interesting to me since I was there, but I'll go ahead and abuse your freely distributed e-mail address since I was so thrilled at finding your website. My favorite religious debate that I witnessed was between two friends. One was devoutly religious; walked door to door handing out bibles and the like. The other was a brilliant science-minded fellow who was very down to earth and practical. The religious one was reading passages of the bible with a fervor, casually disregarding logical arguments explaining the invalidity of the biblical quotations. Finally the science minded fellow said, "I don't read the bible. None of what you're saying makes sense." Stopped the other guy in his tracks. Evidently, the idea that someone hadn't read the bible had never occurred to him.

REPLY:

Jonathan,
Thanks for your message. Isn't the internet great, where likeminded people can actually find each other and share ideas? Must have really been hard for freethinkers, years ago, when they may have gone for years before they found others that had the same thoughts and realized that it was the rest of the world that was crazy and not them.

Regarding your science minded friend: I find the argument that "I have read and do know and do understand the bible and reject it" to be much more effective. Trouble is, a person has to waste a lot of their life before they can say that. Your science minded friend is probably much better off.

Good luck to you on your search for truth.

Editor


 Editor.

Since exiting the Herbygurdy-/Rube Goldberg Wild-World Church of God some years ago, I have returned to my original state of sanity and find much comfort and joy in my regained freedom-of-mind, spirit, free will, and self-expression.

At present I am in the final process of putting together a book on the rise and fall of the Ill-fated Lustron Corporation that once attempted to mass produce an all metal porcelain zed home here at the former Curtiss-Wright plant that once made the navy Hell-Diver bombers and Scout Observation planes. I worked at both plants, but Lustron was really shafted by the government and caused its demise. After months of research and by delving into government documents, including the senate hearings, the book is in the final stages of revision and about ready for publication. The book exposes the corruption, scandal and fraud that occurred back then. I'll send you a complimentary copy. Lustron web sites are all over the internet. Click onto "The Lustron Connection" or "The Lustron Home, A New Standard of Living." Michael O'Neal runs that particular web site, and really likes the first draft of my book.

Anyway, I take breaks during the week reading the Dispatch comics and their "Faith and Value" section to amuse myself. The latest offering is titled "Do Three Faiths share one God?" I thought some of the excerpts from the article would interest you and readers of the Painful truth:

 "One God. Judaism, Christianity and Islam all speak of one Supreme Being and yet, Sunday morning radio programs are rife with preaching about "their God" versus "Our God." Such labeling has been common since Sept.11 terrorists attacks on the World Trade Center and the pentagon, attributed to Muslim extremists. In the name of patriotism, many Christians have called on their God to help America prevail against the worshippers of Allah---not knowing or conceding that "Allah" is the Arabic word for God and used by speakers of that language, regardless of faith-----Saleem Awan, a member of the Islamic Foundation of Central Ohio, doesn't exactly get upset when he hears someone say Muslims don't worship the same God as Jews and Christians. But he likes to tell them why he thinks they're wrong. "I believe there is one God, just not a clear perception that we worship the same entity," he said."

--Unquote. It's as clear as mud to a helluva lot of people.

I remember buying my first book The Painful Truth recommended reading. It was Tim C. Leedom's "The Book Your Church Doesn't Want You To Read." In reference to the bible, which Scott Ashley proclaims to be "The Word of God" (I'm still on his ass, as well as God's) Leedom reveals how a lot of these words are similar to the words of other gods whose worshipers have different beliefs and different laws.

 Christianity--
"All things whatsoever you would that men should do to you, do so even for them." (Matt. 7:12).
Islam--
"No one of you is a believer until he desires for his brother that which he desires for himself."
(Sunnah) Judaism--
"What is hateful to you, do not to your fellowman. That is the entire law; all the rest is commentary." (Talmud, Shabbat 31a)
Buddhism--
"Hurt not others in ways in that you yourself would find hurtful." (Udana Varga 5:18)
Brahmanism--"This is the sum of duty: Do naught unto others which would cause you pain done unto you." (Mahabharata 5,1517).

So if all these various gods are on the same wave length with the words in the bible, then it stands to reason they rule by its precepts as well. Which include every kind of crime ever committed against humanity. But religious fools continue to rush in and praise their particular god where wise men never go (or have been).

 "It's a historical fact that behind all the wars and violence of human history, and behind every gun, has been a religious scripture."---Tim C. Leedom

 Alex


 

 

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