The Painful Truth About The Worldwide Church of God

The Fundamental Flaw With HWA
Is That He Was A Pharisee
But God would have Mercy...

By Douglas

There can be no doubt after this, that The Radio / Worldwide Church of God was a cult.

There can be no doubt after this, that Herbert Armstrong had very little truth.

There can be no doubt after this, that many of the Churches of God have never been what a Merciful God would have wanted.

Matthew, Chapter 23, is an indictment of the Pharisees by one quoted as Jesus.

He began speaking to the multitudes, according to the account, by telling the people to do according to what the Pharisee commanded, because they had the Authority of Moses, but warned not to do their works and deeds. "They say, and do not," He said. Later he accused them of the double standard, that they were hypocrites. He even called the whitewashed tombs.

"For, " He said, "they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men's shoulders; but they themselves will not move them [the heavy burdens] with one of their fingers". Jesus pointed out that they were Narcissists, wanting to be validated--to be seen of men--to make great pretense of their own righteousness. They had their own exclusive clique.

Pharisees were accused of devouring widow's houses, killing the prophets, of being full of extortion and excess while having an image as a triumph over the substance.

Jesus accused the Pharisees of tithing meticulously but utterly ignoring the weightier matters of the law, judgement, mercy, and faith. The prophets before him like Isaiah in Isaiah complain that "None calls for justice, nor any pleads for truth: They trust in vanity, and speak lies; they conceive mischief, and bring forth iniquity".

According to Micah 6:8, all God ever wanted was for us "to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly" with Him.

The phenomenon of the development of the Pharisee mentality is easy to trace. In olden [testament] times, there were these Ten Commandments, which in their pure form were not that burdensome--at least the ones dealing with your neighbor. The Israelites had a problem of "buying into" the whole framework, so even these simple principles were deemed to be "Stupid Rules". That is the problem when folks don't buy into the "Spirit" of regulations: They become stupid rules.

From the Pharisee's point of view, being a superstitious sort, there came to be a belief that many bad things happened to the Israelites because they did not obey "stupid rules".

What to do? What to do?

The Pharisees invented even MORE stupid rules, so the people would not break laws that could send the nation into captivity or worse. They made rules to be fences around the Ten Commandments, so the people would not even get close to breaking them. Hence, if you visit a hotel in Israel today which is positioned to rigidly keep the Sabbath, the elevators run all day by themselves on Saturday, so people won't work by pressing buttons, AND, the toilet paper is pre-torn, so... well, you get the point. The Pharisees invent rules to prevent people from breaking other rules.

That, of course, is not what Scripture says God wanted.

God wanted mercy.

God wanted kindness.

God wanted forgiveness.

God wanted justice, judgement, and equity.

God wanted peace.

According to the Scriptures.

Even the Apostle Paul pointed out that the "stupid rules" of sacrifices were ADDED because of transgressions, until such time that One would come to clear things up. God never intended stupid rules.

Pharisees focus in on the methods and processes, rather than the results. Once a stupid rule is conceived and written, it stays, and is nearly impossible to remove. It is administered without mercy. YOU MUST KEEP THIS STUPID RULE because it shows how righteous you are! AND it shows who is IN CHARGE, and how RIGHTEOUS they are.

Some time in the [nearly] recent past, Woody Allen had a movie called "Bananas" in which, with the most sincere of intentions, he displaced a South American dictator to help and serve the people. It was no time at all that he was lording it over everybody and making up stupid rules. One of the rules was that the people had to change their underwear every four hours. To make the law easier to enforce, he made it the law that everyone would wear their underwear over their outer garments so the policia could inspect the masses for compliance....

Most rational people should be able to figure out that stupid rules, added for the sake of "righteousness", is the mark of a cult. Often, people tell me that "But Herbert Armstrong brought us the Truth", to which I often reply, "Which truth? The truth of over 192 failed prophecies? The truth of various doctrines? Which ones? How do we separate the truth from fiction? What are the lies and which is true?"

People who have tuned in late, or are uninitiated, may think the following utterly preposterous. impossible--it could not have happened. But it did. This is so amazing and plain that most people have missed it. The following list has a few entries which may bear some explanation, because they may have their roots in Scripture, but this is a list of truly stupid rules, made up by Herbert Armstrong and his minions which most thinking people would reject as not being according to God's will at all. A few have merit, but none have any more than a passing tenuous relationship to Biblical Reality.

For the skeptics out there who do not accept the reality that the Worldwide Church of God had Pharisaical stupid rules administered without mercy, I offer the following [some may have differed from region to region and minister to minister]:

Stupid Rules of the Radio Church of God

For those who have never heard this before, this must be amazing. For the rest of us, it was just a matter of course.

There are probably more, and feel free to add, but have I made my point?

These stupid rules were administered without mercy, and that's just plain crazy. Not to mention, for the most part, this is not what a merciful Creator would be looking for in terms of building our relationships and showing kindness to others.

Stupid rules never produce righteousness.

If we perform good works, they must come from the good fruit of a right spirit.

I offer this in a spirit of mercy and kindness for those seeking answers....




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