Sunday, 30 December 2007

Predictions for 2008


A new year is almost upon us all, and rather than let Ron Weinland (that's not him in the picture) have all the fun, here are a few alternative predictions.

* The Great Tribulation will not begin this year, and Ron will have a problem with all those books that say it will gathering dust in his garage.

* A major COG figure from times past - perhaps more than one - will pass on to their eternal reward, leaving those still here trying to come up with something tactful but true to say about them.

* The main COGs (UCG, LCG) will continue to lose ministers, several of whom will start up their own religious business venture (with little success.)

* The main COGs will continue to bleed members, some of whom will go out with high drama, but most of which will quietly disengage.

* At least one of the minor COGs will disappear completely, and hardly anyone will notice.

* There will be some really wacky ads appearing in The Journal.

* Rod Meredith will call a church-wide fast.

* Joe Tkach will not resign as Pastor General and not put in place representative structures in the WCG.

* David Hulme will continue to clock up frequent flier miles.

* Bob Thiel will make an unflattering comparison between LCG and UCG (one guess as to which will be "unflattered".)

* Under guise of "watching world news" several COGs will issue outrageous political commentaries (what else is new?)

* Scores of members in splinter groups will suffer irrecoverable financial loss or die unnecessarily following church teaching about healing and tithing (including special appeals.)

* LCG will publish an article explaining why Christians shouldn't vote.

* The new CGI website - if it ever eventuates - won't have been worth the wait.

* Fred Coulter's "new" translation of the whole Bible will be a colossal waste of time and tithes.

Well, OK, most of these are dead certs, but it's nice to have a high accuracy rating. It's also admittedly very similar to last year's prognostications... but then, well, these guys really are predictable. One thing I did get wrong last time was: "Ron Weinland will start qualifying and backtracking as he realises that he's painted himself into a date-setting corner." In fact Ronald's lemming impulse has moved up a gear.

Now it's over to you... what do you think 2008 will bring in the post-Herbal gulag?

Port Austin

The Port Austin kerfuffle has been resolved by the courts, if anyone cares... I certainly don't. The Journal however has something about it on their website.

What's more remarkable is that on the same website there's an article by Norm Edwards called How to Start and Run a Local Church.

Any irony is probably unintentional.

94 comments:

Robert said...

On 12th May 2008 the Real ID Act comes into law in the US requiring citizens to have an id card with a RFID chip if they want to use air transportation, use governmental buildings or open new bank accounts.

It will be interesting times ahead to see the numbers of people that object to this legislation.

The one thing that I do agree with the SDAs is that the (US is the rising beast coming out of the land) in the book of Revelation. I can see it happening as the US seeks to dominate world affairs, takes away liberty from its own citizens etc.

Anonymous said...

Dennis here...Google reject today

"Everything in the Old Testament is perverted and distorted into meanings never intended by the writers. The practice which the writers of the books employ is not more false than it is absurd. They state some trifling case of the person they call Jesus Christ, and then cut out a sentence from some passage of the OT and call it a prophecy of that case. But when the words thus cut out are restored to the places they are taken from, and read with the words before and after them, they give the lie to the New Testament."--Thomas Paine

To me, this is one of the most succinct observations about how humans have developed the elaborate and contradictory belief systems that we, in our sincerity, have all found ourselves caught up in. Once you see it, you can't unsee it. Those for whom that is not an alternative reality to theirs will go crazy saying it ain't so. And so the game continues.

If one could just kill the meme that the Bible is given by a Deity as His BEST attempt at bringing humans to a harmonious understanding of truth, how much better might we all be?

The reason that "the truth" divides people, families, friends and whole countries, is that there is no one truth that all will ever agree on. Truth is a perspective and not all humans process and filter their world the same way. There will never be a time when "All" will do this or that as stated in the book. It is not how the human mind processes ideas.

Forced belief and compliance, or else, is a standard Biblical construct. Who the hell wants to be forced to be sincere? It's like saying "You MUST relax!" The must kinda ruins the relax part.

We used to not bat an eyelash at thinking all nations will come up to Jerusalem to keep the FOT and of course if they don't, no rain for them. Just the fact that even the book recongnizes not all will see the point in that trip and have to be punished into going should tell us something about the concept.

Religious blather is endless. It may be challenging, entertaining, enlightening or freakin scary, but it is endless.

Sometimes reminding myself that our universe may just be one grape on a cluster of grapes in one vineyard restores perspective.

amen..:)

Stingerski said...

Robert said :

On 12th May 2008 the Real ID Act comes into law . . .

Hmmmm, when did they sneak this piece of legislation past us? This sounds like the Son of Bank Secrecy Act, 1970. That "act" allowed the govt. to go snooping thru just about anyone's bank accounts in the name of their phony War on Drugs. (Governments typically mislabel legislation on purpose, calling it what it isn't.)

We've lost so many of our former liberties, beginning with the Lincoln administration in this country, that there aren't many left to lose. Wanna buy a pack of smokes? If you look under age 27, the fascists require ID. (Why 27, and not age 25 or 30 is anybody's guess, save the govt. likes to jerk us all around.)

Same with their gestapo like traffic check points. They just pull us over en masse for no reason and scare the hell out of people.

I could go on and on. But I believe that scene from the movie Airport II is coming true -- the one where the terrorists are marching right thru the metal detectors, complete with weaponry, while the "security" guards have that nun up against the wall. Govt. more and more seems to think the way to keep order is to terrorize everybody at some point. Fascism is alive and well.

As for the SDAs interpretation, I've pondered that many times. I would say it has merit, if only it were not true that the Book of Rev (if it ever was true at all) was fulfilled almost 2,000 years ago when Jerusalem fell to the Romans.

Tom Mahon said...

"Everything in the Old Testament is perverted and distorted into meanings never intended by the writers. The practice which the writers of the books employ is not more false than it is absurd. They state some trifling case of the person they call Jesus Christ, and then cut out a sentence from some passage of the OT and call it a prophecy of that case. But when the words thus cut out are restored to the places they are taken from, and read with the words before and after them, they give the lie to the New Testament."--Thomas Paine.

It is a crying shame he can't come back tell you all how wrong he was.

Stingerski said...

Actually Tom, the only thing you share in common with Thomas Paine is your first name. He made way, way more sense (Common Sense) than you ever will, as long as you are caught up in your Armstrongology.

I've always found it very ironic that, much to the chagrin of the Armstrongites, the U.S.A. began its life as a Republican democracy, and not some divine dictatorship, as you would have liked.

Stingerski said...

Dennis said (quoting Paine) :

They state some trifling case of the person they call Jesus Christ, and then cut out a sentence from some passage of the OT and call it a prophecy of that case.

Yes, and the Jews must have a hearty laugh every time they read the "gospel" of Matthew. If there was every a writer who cobbled disparate scriptures together to prove his point, Matthew was it.

I had this type of discussion on another forum about Isaiah 7 and the "virgin" birth. This chapter has nothing to do with any future Jesus Christ. And the conundrum for Christians who believe it does is, then there were two virgin births in history. (They are usually ready to stone me at that point.)

Anonymous said...

Stingerski:

"Matthew" is one of the biggest offenders in the NT of making a scripture mean what it never meant. Paul was pretty good at that as well.

Every one of Matthew's "and thus it was fulfilled"s in Jesus birth account are grossly taken out of the original context. Of course, no one else in the whole NT quotes Matthews usage to tell their story of Jesus.

Dennis

Tom Mahon said...

>>>Now it's over to you... what do you think 2008 will bring in the post-Herbal gulag?<<<

What I think doesn't matter. But the following is what I know will happen:

1)The happy band of scoffers will continue to revile HWA, and lament their involvement with WCG.

2)Richard will continue to bore us rigid with long, rambling extracts from what is laughingly called his unpublished essays.

3)Charlie will continue to call me Saint Tom, thinking it is a pejorative term.

4)Douglas will try and fail to string a sentence together that is not fill with rage and anger at me and HWA.

5)Dennis, O Dennis! What can one say about Dennis? He will continue to descend further and further into darkness.

6)Robert will continue to oscillate between the devil and the deep blue sea.

7)Gavin will continue his search for the truth, which he had but didn't realise it.

8)Paul, the atheist, will continue to deceive himself.

Later this evening, I shall comment on the other members of the cabal, including cracker, who has been blinded by all the mud slinging!

Anonymous said...

For example,

Paul teaches in Galatians 3:11

"But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.

3:12 And the law is not of faith: but, The man that doeth them shall live in them."

using Habbakuk 2:4 as a proof text.

However, the original context was one of surviving impending doom and reads in reality, "the just shall live by HIS faith" meaning they will survive what is coming upon them in the form of invading armies.

It has NOTHING to do with Paul's arguments about law being a curse and starting a new faith based on faith and belief in Jesus.

As noted, if Paul was a Pharisee of the Pharisees, above all fellow students and most amazing, he didn't reason or think like one.

And the Roman citizenship was a bit of an embarassment for a Pharisee as well.

Cut and paste theology

Dennis

Anonymous said...

"We've lost so many of our former liberties, beginning with the Lincoln administration in this country, that there aren't many left to lose."

If you are an American, then vote for Ron Paul who voted against the Patriot Act (the only Republican to do so) and the Real ID Act of 2005.


Paul

Paul

Douglas Becker said...

On 12th May 2008 the Real ID Act comes into law in the US requiring citizens to have an id card with a RFID chip if they want to use air transportation, use governmental buildings or open new bank accounts.

This is most unfortunate news because the RFID chips have been found to cause cancer... in laboratory animals. But then, the suspicion here is that everything causes cancer in laboratory animals because they want to please their masters. It's the animal kingdom equivalent to Armstrongology [thanks Stinger, you've given us a new weapon].

The good news is that Altheimer's patients will be found when they wander off, the bad news is they will develop cancer and the no news is that they won't be aware of any of it.

For 2008, I predict that Tom will continue to be able to only follow do's and don'ts of Armstrongology and become even worse by not understanding bad from good and right from wrong, just like the general population of the ministry of Armstrongology and the WCG. No conscience will be the order of the year. The Pharisee within him will grow and grow until it becomes very very great. His self-righteousness will exceed all boundaries of propriety and will set some sort of record. His favorite Scripture will be "Trust in yourself with all your heart and lean to your own understanding" followed by "Pure religion and undefiled is to ignore the fatherless and widow and to do Satan's Work through character assassination of God's servants".

As with each and every election year, I predict, and have never been wrong -- ever -- that the scoundrels will win and if they aren't, they will be: 100% accurate prophecy rate there; a real no brainer (except of course, it is a brilliant concept never developed before).

Again this year, Herbert Armstrong will fail to be resurrected.

No one will flee for the real place of safety because there isn't any.

Jesus Christ will again, not return to earth because he said very plainly, "I come when you think not". Now while it is true that people like Tom are pretty thoughtless, that is not what Jesus meant: Someone, somewhere believes that Jesus will come in 2008, and so he won't. So there.

The Great Tribulation will begin in 2008. Again. For the umpteenth time. And it will be worse than ever before in earth's history, but then, that's how it was last year and the year before, wasn't it. OK, well, it's a point of view.

Prophecy will continue to fail, as predicted by I Corinthians 13, rather spectacularly. This is the main prophecy of the Bible which will never fail.

Financial trouble for some people in the United States will be rather terrible and some businesses will fail -- some of them major. This will be hailed as the fulfillment of prophecy amongst the Church of Godletts as they rejoice that the end is nearer than ever. At the same time, part of the Great Tribulation in the U.S. is the absolutely painful campaigns, mud slinging and the Conventions. There will be absolutely no peace for anyone turning on the TV on most of the major channels until the elections are over -- unless you stick to the Sci-fi channel, and even there, you might not be safe.

Norman Edwards will continue to pop up from time to time in 2008, and you must admit that his points in the Journal are pretty poignant. Like Herbert Armstrong, he is a keen observer of human nature, not that he uses his powers of observation for good in all circumstances.... And the really good news is that I bought a Sears Diehard Platinum Battery, so I predict that Sears will continue to recover from Norm's brother-in-law in yet another banner year for the Auto Department. [Thanks guys, I appreciate the $50 discount for my old battery!]

A certain very small CoG will continue to grow by leaps and bounds as it has this year, absorbing folks from the UCG and United because they have a compassionate, kind and loving minister -- something the other CoGs should consider, if they want to grow their business in the Church Corporate.

The CoG environment will continue to get progressively worse being, as it were, completely chaotic, dysfunctional and making no sense whatsoever.

Critics of the CoGs will continue to increase and there will be no end of material to fuel the refuseniks.

Anonymous said...

"If you are an American, then vote for Ron Paul"

Ron Paul? He doesn't exist. I don't hear anything of him on CNN or Fox. Therefore, he does not exist Only the duly se-lected can be promoted in Amerika.

PS we will......

Dennis

Douglas Becker said...

Ron Paul? He doesn't exist.

Yes, Dennis, again quantum physics raises its confusing heads: Ron Paul hasn't been observed, so he doesn't exist.

And that's the way it really works in public opinion: Quantum Physics rules -- and rocks!

Who knew?

Anonymous said...

Stingerski said...
(They are usually ready to stone me at that point.)

Ah Stingy baby, It’s delightful to see that all those stones bounced off ya.

PS:
Who luvs U baby ?????
LOL

Anonymous said...

Douglas said:

"Jesus Christ will again, not return to earth because he said very plainly, "I come when you think not".

That's it! Somehow, we have to get the COG's to start preaching that "my lord delays his coming" and kaboom...he shows up! I mean if they really want him to come, this is the only way to make it happen.

Dave Pack can give a sermon..."I have never quite given a sermon like this before...my lord delays his coming...wink wink.."

Send out a "to be played in all the Churches" tape on this. I think we have found the Key of David.

cincint said...

Perhaps this is the year that Fred Coulter’s predictions will come to fruition. He said that the 2 witnesses will be the prime minister of Israel, and the chief rabbi in Israel. Also he stated that the beast will be the United Nations. He then said that chips will be planted in American citizens. (the mark of the beast.)

Richard, it was Kettering. My family has done pretty much the same thing. We don’t talk religion anymore either. Isn’t it something? Religion brought us together, and it tore us apart. One member of my family morally hit the bottom. The rest I see regularly. I married a great man over 20 years ago who has been with me all the way.I also went into splinters, but couldn’t take anymore. I work out my own salvation.

Anonymous said...

It's pretty tacky having one portion of scripture teach "he comes at a time when you think not," and then rebuke those in the church who have noted "my lord delays his coming," and not thinking he is coming, which then qualifies as a good time to come.

It seems to me that the ones who think he is coming soon are delaying the whole World Tomorrow.

Or is it just me :) Wait...I'm starting to sound like Robert.

Robert said...

>>>6)Robert will continue to oscillate between the devil and the deep blue sea.

What a compliment, you sure know how to give them Tom!

Not quite sure what you mean by it!

I am half liberal, half orthodox, half conservative and certainly more nutty than a fruit cake!

Perhaps that's what you meant to say!

Douglas Becker said...

Well, January First isn't the beginning of all the new years in 2008. The Chinese New Year begins February 7. It is the Year of the Rat. That seems relevant some how.

Actually, I suspect that 2008 will be the Year of the Rat, Snake and Dragon all rolled into one.

And then there is the Hebrew New Year as opposed to the Jewish New Year. In 2008, they are a month apart. However, due to vaguries of calculation and the craziness of the actual celestial body movements, the Passover will fall on the eve of the Spring Equinox and the Feast of Tabernacles will start in summer. Bummer.

My prediction concerning the Calendars: No one will actually care, except the ones who can't spel righte: A Feast is a Feast is a Feast. Pagan or not -- and they look the same, pretty much.

Lussenheide said...

Lussenheide's Predictions for AMBASSADOR WATCH 2008...

* Dennis will demonstrate for us that in the astrological sense, and in reference to monetary abuse, that the "Big Dipper" represented HWA, and that the "Little Dipper" represented GTA.

* Gavin will do an "off topic" book review with a title along the lines of "Fingerpainting for the Soul"

* Tom will continue to be a Jack Ass

* It will be discovered that every single annoynmous post is from only one of four people,..Bob Thiel, Rod Meredith, Clyde Kilough, or David Hulme.

* Kscribe will create an Ambassador Watch "You Tube"

* Doug Becker will inform us that there is a "Rational Recovery Program" for people that are already using a "Rational Recovery Program".

* "Byker Bob" will turn out to be an 87 year old great-grandmother in a nursing home in Johnstown Pennsylvania.

* Ambassador Watch and its readers/posters will be decalared a destructive cult in its own right by Hank Haandegraff and the Christian Research Institute.

* Stingerski, Jim Butler, Charlie, Questeruk, Robert, Bamboo Bends, Corky, VonHowitzer,& Mouse will all join together and start a radio morning drive show that will top the ratings of all others and will rival Howard Stern.

* Lussenheide will form a rival "Ambassador Watch" and Gavin/Lussenheide will "disfellowship" each other, declare that they each are the only "one true AW" , and that each is indeed the only Earthly "Apostle of Internet Poppycock"

Bill Lussenheide, Menifee, CA USA

Robert said...

>>>RFID chips have been found to cause cancer..

Apparently if you wrap RFID tags in metal foil their signal cannot be read.

Or you can invest in one of these fine products shielding you (www.idstronghold.com).

Corky said...

If you are looking for the US to be a beast of Revelation, you are looking in the wrong place.

First of all, you have to dump Armstrongism's interpretation of the Revelation and in fact, dump all of the aventist's interpretations.

The book is really only an elaboration of Matt. 24, Mark 13 and Luke 21, ie, the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple.

And, if the book is written in about 96 AD as the biblical scholars and critics both agree, then it is written after the fact.

The problem is that the predictions of the Parousia, the resurrection and the kingdom didn't happen. Or, at least didn't happen in any physical sense.

Unless the thousand year reign of Jesus on earth, ruling with a rod of iron, is considered to be the thousand year reign of the RCC, ruling with a rod of iron, which is also past, the book means nothing.

That's it! The book means nothing. It may have meant something to the seven churches in Asia but to people today, it means nothing.

Anyone today who bases their beliefs on the Revelation is as screwed up in the head as the man who wrote it.

Anonymous said...

The Book of Revelation does, however, prove that drugs were a problem in the early church...

Anonymous said...

The Book of Revelation does, however, prove that drugs were a problem in the early church...

Douglas Becker said...

Bill,

You hold to the strongest methodologies of prophecy of all: Predicting the past.

It does seem though, unlike Herbert Armstrong, who inadvertently predicted the past, you have done it accurately and not like Armstrong who predicted broadcasting to Israel through a powerful radio station which was already destroyed at the time the prediction was made. Bummer. Bad luck for false prophets.

I should point out that Rational Recovery works for both those using it now [whether deliberately or not], and those who adopt it. Jack and Lois Trimpey did appear on Oprah, after all. I predict that you will not appear on Oprah this coming year.

I predict your attempts to establish a competing AW will utterly fail and Gavin will remain Master of the realm, not unlike no one being able to win against the Church of God Industries or Mark Lax as Pastor General.

"Byker Bob" will turn out to be an 87 year old great-grandmother in a nursing home in Johnstown Pennsylvania.

Wrong again: She's 90, a great grandmother and not in a nursing home; she's out riding her Harley and with her great grandchildren when not posting to AW.

I predict that there will be a thousand year rain on the UCG in the Pacific Northwest in 2008.

Douglas

Douglas Becker said...

And Bill, if you think by using Reverse Psychology by predicting I will again mention Rational Recovery will stop me from mentioning it, think again.

As long as Tom still needs it, I will keep bringing it up until he gets it -- and I would predict that will not happen in 2008... or 2009... or 2010... or 2011... or 2012... or....

Douglas Becker said...

Bill, there is one thing with which I truly disagree:

Tom will continue to be a Jack Ass

He will continue to be a dumbass, not a Jack Ass.

mel said...

In the year 2008:

* The ultimate irony will occur when Spanky dies of a massive infection from a tiny iron splinter in his finger.

* Another major irony occurs, when Tom's insanity causes him to eat Cracker, the one who was almost saved by him.

* While on a swashbuckling search for proofs of his interpretation of the Bible, Robert inadvertently discovers Santa at his North Pole workshop, adopts a Santa-based theology, and begins wearing a foil hat to ward off non-Santa-friendly thoughts.

* The Lussenheide is served a cease and desist order from using his name by the Colgate-Palmolive Corporation, when it is determined that "lussenheide" means "smooth as a baby's bottom"

* The Abomination of Desecrations occurs when someone at the Flurry compound is told to "tinkle the ivories", resulting in urine contamination of HWA's old piano.

* Mrs Flurry files for divorce after discovering Gerald committing fornication with the Prayer Rock. Mr Flurry responds with, "But honey, after a six-pack, it's hard to tell the two of you apart!"

* Ron Weinland converts to Scientology, but is assigned to their RPF "jail" when he makes a stink about not being allowed in their Celebrity Center.

* The Good News becomes the Good Mews, after Clyde Kilough gets a cute kitten, ingests LSD, and invents new cat-worshiping doctrines.

Anonymous said...

I predict, and deem this true, that sadly, Bob Thiel will continue to post "News of Those Once Affiliated With the Worldwide Church of God," where only he gets to comment on it as the foremost authority on how it all is, was and shall be as if no one else had that experience.

Dennis

Anonymous said...

I predict, and deem this true, that sadly, Bob Thiel will continue to post "News of Those Once Affiliated With the Worldwide Church of God," where only he gets to comment on it as the foremost authority on how it all is, was and shall be as if no one else had that experience.

Dennis

Anonymous said...

I don't know why I am stuttering today!

dennis

Douglas Becker said...

Mel, wrong on only two counts:

Robert inadvertently discovers Santa at his North Pole workshop, adopts a Santa-based theology, and begins wearing a foil hat to ward off non-Santa-friendly thoughts.

No, Robert will wear a foil hat protect him from cell phones

The Good News becomes the Good Mews, after Clyde Kilough gets a cute kitten

Wrong again. All the ministers in the UCG are Republican Dog Owners, except for Mr. Robert Dick, who accepted a stray cat because Mrs. Dick took mercy on the poor thing. As a result of the rejection of the Salvation of Cats, The Good News will become The Good Blues, based on how many ministers suffer from clinical depression and how many articles about being "happy happy" there are instead of telling people to go and get mental health professional help to prevent them from eventually dying from their affliction.

Otherwise, mostly good job [not an endorsement and there might possibly be other errors].

I predict that again in 2008, I will proceed to mercilessly split yet another infinitive and manage ending a sentence preposition with.

I also predict that some of us will continue to double post double post.

Douglas Becker said...

Dennis,

Not to worry. Last week I managed to double post to the IBMLINK site while registering a problem for an Electronic Tracking Record. Fortunately, the Second Level Guy expunged the offensive double dealing post, but not without leaving an indelible comment that he had done so.

Also not so good was the inadvertent return during an incomplete posting with the embarrassing result of having the problem description started and a break with transmission details in between.

Dennis, it could be worse. This could be a highly public forum that people care about.

Some years back, I was a frequenter of four forums. As I recall, I was a comoderator of the CoG related forum at the time. The other three were populated with highly skilled smart people with PhDs in the sciences, many of whom wrote both science articles for mass publication and science fiction.

Every once in awhile, particularly on the best and most sophisticated one of them, topics like prophecy and British Israelism would pop up. Now, some people feel perfectly comfortable making dumbasses of themselves, considering themselves to be a big crocodile in a small pond. Though most of the participants were extremely kind, generous and humanitarian, they were also quite objective and scientific in their approach -- as well as perfectly reasonable rational folks. The topics didn't last very long and they made hash of them in very short order, completely trashing them with irrefutable logic scientifically in less than 36 hours, less on the weekend.

I say, let those Armstrongists who think they are so brilliant, clever, smart and shrewd, go swimming with the piranhas for awhile to see how much meat is left in short order.

Their only recourse is to complain about "Science, falsely so called". Whine all you want. You lose when reality sets in.

Douglas Becker said...

I predict that in 2008, Trekkers will again dress up as Klingons and feed the hungry and homeless. I also predict that the Trekkers will again do humanitarian works publicly without making a fuss and retain their reputation for never doing anything illegal or unethical as a group as they go forth and help people, costumes not withstanding.

I also predict that most of the Churches of God will continue not to measure up to the humanitarianism of Trekkers.

Anonymous said...

Tom:

Just sooz you understand the idea the NT is cobbled together badly from the OT by more than just one critical thinker...

"There is no prophecy in the OT foretelling the coming of Jesus Christ. There is not one word in the OT referring to him in any way--not one word. The only way to prove this is to take your Bible, and wherever you find these words; "That it might be fulfilled" and "which was spoken" turn to the OT and find what was written, and you will see that it had not the slightest possible reference to the thing recounted in the NT--not the slightest."
-- Robert Green Ingersol

"Properly read, the Bible is the most potent force for atheism ever conceived." -- Isaac Asimov

"Whoever will take the trouble to read attentively, will find in all those passages where the OT is cited, only an obvious abuse of words, and the seal of falsehood on almost every page." -- Voltaire

Now I realize these are Men of Satan, and not in God's Church, totally deceived and blinded by that old Serpent, the Devil and Satan, but they still express themselves well. I mean inspite of the Satan thing.

Anonymous said...

I'll get it all over with in one posting.
I'll get it all over with in one posting.

Hi Douglas
Hi Douglas

You are right
You are right

We're all very small fish in a very big pond but at least willing to take a look at the whole thing.
We're all very small fish in a very big pond but at least willing to take a look at the whole thing

dennis
dennis
:)
:)

Corky said...

I predict that in 2008:

* Jesus will not return.
* CoGs will predict 2012.
* Some CoGs will fold.
* A CoG member will commit suicide.
* Global warming will become fact.
* An Arkansan will bcome president.
* A record watermelon in Hope, AR.
* An atheist book will be written.
* More wars & rumors of wars.
* Earthquakes, floods and drought.

Furthermore in the years 2008 - extinction of humans:

* Jesus will not return.
* More wars & rumors of wars.
* Earthquakes, floods and drought.
* Volcanoes will erupt.
* Planes will crash.
* Preachers will still talk stupid.

Anonymous said...

Some of you might enjoy my article on Opednews.com today that was "elevated" to the top left of the front page.

Those Prospering Pastors--When To Say No

by Dennis Diehl Page 1 of 2 page(s)

http://www.opednews.com

Kscribe said...

Mel and all here...

I would love to use this prophecy stuff on a web page. With your permission of course! Funny stuff Mel. Exceptional!

Anonymous said...

"Ron Paul? He doesn't exist."

Yes, you are right. He also recieved the most non-existent donations from non-existent veterans in the third quarter, set a non-existent historical fundraising record by raising six non-existent dollars in twenty-four hours. He is also approaching a non-existent nineteen million dollars for the fourth quarter, which is close to Hillary Clinton, a real live candidate. He also has a rabid non-existent following comprised of liberals, libertarians, and conservatives. Sigh. I guess I'll just have to vote for a real live conservative like Rudy Huckabee or Fred Romney.

If Ron Paul would only get with the program and acknowledge that the War in Iraq, er, I mean the War for Freedomness is good thing and that fighting in Iraq is stopping the terrorists, he might just be recognized as existing.

To be fair, he did get invited on Meet the Press the other day. They threw the dog a bone.

Paul

Anonymous said...

Ahem. Six ~million~ non-existent dollars in twenty-four hours.


Paul

Anonymous said...

Gavin,

I understand that the crystal ball in the pic is made from premium Steuben.

As for 2008,we are one year closer to whatever.

Yes, Rodders will probably call a fast.It's all about the FRE-FLO DOLLAR.

Any way,folks 'ave a 'APPY NOO YER.

A Nonnie Mouse

Anonymous said...

Good article, Dennis.

I was one of those who took out cash advances on my credit card for many years for HD offerings. Stupid, stupid, stupid.

I was terrified of God.

Then, somewhere around the mid-90's when things began to change and the minister became more and more loathsome, arrogant, caught in lies, phoniness, spiritually abusive, I gave empty envelopes on the HD's and started to withhold tithes.

Then I smartened up and quit.

Anonymous said...

"I was terrified of God."

I was too. I mean, who isn't afraid of a God that may or may not allow you to die a terrible death whether you obey him or not?

Paul

Byker Bob said...

Ditch the crystal ball, and what would any self-respecting ACOGger who had read "God Speaks out on The New Morality", "The Missing Dimension in Sex", or any of the other Armstrong sex related materials think the crystal ball man?

Answer: His eyes and expression are exactly as described by Armstrong for those of the chronic masturbator. LOL

BB

Douglas Becker said...

My son proposes the Thomson / Waterson ticket for 2008 presidency.

Neotherm said...

In 2008, we will discover that HWA is someone that we helped to create -- like those science fiction movies where the antagonist is a projection of mental processes of the protagonists.

I am reading a book by Frank Schaeffer entitled "Crazy for God". Frank is the son of Francis Schaffer and was instrumental in the founding of the evangelical movement but has now separated himself from the movement. In chapter 15, he writes about some of the early evangelical leaders and their flaws and peculiarities. He writes:

"The paradox is that sometimes the less it (faith) makes sense, the better it works. And the less we know about the "holy" people we follow, the better. One of the mysteries of human need is that religious leaders must become more than the sum of their fallible, sometimes awful, parts, because other people NEED them to be more. This does not make the religiuos leader a hypocrite; it just shows that the rest of us are desperate."

While this does not precisely fit the HWA phenomenon, it does give me pause.

In a way, we created Herbert, or at a minimum enabled and empowered him, because we, ourselves, were sick and afraid. And the goal of exiting Armstrongism is not to go back to what we were but to find a new, better voice.

May you find that voice 2008.

-- Neo

mel said...

More prophecies! And yes take what you'd like, KScribe.
I'd like to see any of the COG leaders be this specific!

In the year 2008:

* Following the death of Mr Meredith, representatives from the United and Living churches meet at a restaurant during all-you-can-eat taco night. One form of flatulence resulting from the meeting is the news that the two churches will merge.
The resulting church's name is announced as Shackin' Up: Living With United, a Limited Viability Corporation.

* After hearing of the announcement, Bob Thiel contracts Demonic Dissociative Dissonance Syndrome, and slips into a semi-catatonic state, in which he rarely moves except when eating pretzels, using the litter box, or typing badly spelled words atrociously arranged.

* Dave "Pretty Boy" Pack fights Mike Tyson in an effort to bring attention to the RCG. During the thrilling fight, Daves Protective "Circle in the Ring" is breached when Tyson chews off parts of Dave's ears.
Tyson is disqualified for cannibalism, but then Dave is also disqualified when the referees discover pieces of Steuben Crystal in Dave's boxing gloves.
Dave's ears do look more normal after being chewed by Tyson's bionic teeth, though.

Douglas Becker said...

Mel,

An interesting proposition: Merger of UCG and LCG after RM.

I don't think it will happen. It will depend on who gets the power after death -- that's as in "power of attorney".

"Ah, death, where is your sting?"

In the contracts, final wills and testaments, I'd guess.

Anonymous said...

10 Armstrong Gulag predictions for 2008 :

1. Many Armstrongite ministers will come in Christ's name, say Jesus is Christ, and shall deceive many.

2. There will at least be 8 or 9 people claiming to be one of the two witnesses, along with several people claiming to be the biblical personalities of Moses, a couple of Daniels, five or six Ezekiels, and at least one or two Elijahs.

3. There will be a crisis in "The Work", and there will be a special day of fasting declared.

4. The final "gun lap" will be announced in at least one ACOG pod. Will anyone care?

5. The splintering among Armstrongism will continue. With the best corporate names already taken and no longer available, new more ridiculous corporate names will spring up among the new splinter groups: Church of God Nineveh's Hope, Jonah's Whale and Whaling Members; Church of God, Sacrificial Lamb and Monday Pentecosts; Enduring Waterhouse Sermon Church of God; Reader's Digest Church of God, Church of God, Seventh Day Spanky; and my personal favorite: International Church of God, Garner Ted Armstrong Church Jet Stewardess and Masseuse United, a Worldwide Intercontinental Community (ICOGGTACJSMUWIC)- are all a small sampling of the new religious ventures that will open for business to receive the tithes and offerings of the unsuspecting sheep who did not read Dennis Diehl's Those Prospering Pastors - When To Say No.

6. Society as a whole will not notice Ron Weinland, and therefore the final warning message will not be received.

7. A member of the famed "Young Ambassadors" will write a "tell all book" with plenty of behind the scenes stories of sex and practicing the Missing Dimension including what was going on under the table while they were dining in the home of Mr. Herbert Armstrong.

8. Armstrong church related memorabilia will become collector's items and command top dollar on eBay with some items fetching as much as $2 or $3.

9. Toy maker Mattel with produce a line of niche Armstrong Church of God Muppets dolls with the Dave Pack Ernie look alike Muppet doll being its most popular.

10. The antics and the ridiculousness among the various Armstrong Churches of God will continue to be a source of entertainment and amusement to some of us who are fans of the Ambassador Watch website.

Happy New Years to all.

Richard

mel said...

Another prediction for the year 2008:

* Facts obtained through the Freedom of Information Act reveal that not only was Joseph W. Tkach NEVER a "war hero" while in the Navy(as he claimed), but his reaction to being scared by a loud noise led to the coining of the term, "Poop Deck".

..............................
Douglas,
I do wonder why they'd have those meetings, after all the bad feelings that must have arisen during and after all the grabbing of the market share of disaffected wcg members. I'm just guessing.
It's hard to interpret what's happening, or guess what might happen, in arenas where insanity abounds.

Douglas Becker said...

It's hard to interpret what's happening, or guess what might happen, in arenas where insanity abounds.

Mel, if you know the type of insanity, the usual point of view of the participants, the inherited aptitudes and the resources available, your chances of determining future activities are much improved.

For example, it is possible to accurately predict future management decisions if you but determine their standard decision making habits based on the particular lusts they prefer. I do so on a regular basis and am from 85% to 100% accurate and getting better all the time.

Certainly, we can get close to what Gerald Flurry can do and we have David Pack pretty well mapped out.

Consider it the science of Psychohistory described by Isaac Asimov in the Foundation Series, employing the science of mass action predicting the future on mass scale.

Unfortunately, the WCG never produced a Hari Seldon and never hired one for Ambassador College. The closest they ever got was Dr. Robert Kuhn, but we all know how that ended up.

Douglas Becker said...

It should be noted from psychohistory that fall of civilization into "Dark Ages" is inevitable. The best that can be hoped for is that there will be those who some how preserve technology and civilization will be rebuilt.

Given the psychohistory of the WCG and splinters [this time, "psychohistory" in the sense of history of psychopaths in the church], we're overdue for Dark Ages in the church. Or maybe we are in them and no one notices.

Douglas Becker said...

One other thing to consider in this insanity: Ron Weinland may not have taken into account the Calendar in his prophecies. His timing assumes that Passover is in April, based on the postponements and that pushes out the Feast of Tabernacles into or close to November.

Suppose, just suppose [and please note tongue firmly in cheek with a sense of irony accompanied with sarcasm in this cautionary tale] that he is wrong. It would mean that the Passover is in March with the Great Tribulation starting then. He'll certainly be caught flat footed and even if people see a similarity in the predicted events, his credibility will fail because he was a month late.

See, when you're a false prophet and not getting the Word of the Lord, but pretending to do so, lots of events occur you never foresaw. You have to think of these things if you're going to hold on to one shred of credibility, but for the life of me, I don't see how knowing this could help him at this point.

byker bob said...

My prediction for the coming year in COGdom:

Nothing good, beneficial, noteworthy, "of God", or world impacting will emanate from any of those still teaching anything which even remotely resembles Armstrongism.

They may get some attention, but it will be based on really "out of it" behavioral patterns amongst the members, or just plain weirdness amongst the so-called ministry.

The failed prophecies will continue to be failed prophecies, no matter how furiously the illegal tithe farmers attempt to fan the flames.

The natural attrition rate will continue to shrink the churches overall, although there may be temporary growth amongst some of the splinters due to occasional incestuous cross pollination.

Hint: If the end is coming, expect the warning to come from a completely unrelated group, or from the stones Yahweh's going to need to raise up!

Happy New Year, Everybody!
BB

Anonymous said...

In 1998, New Times LA in will publish a follow up article to "Honey, I Think I Shrunk the Church", to be entitled, "Honey, I Think I Stole the Whole Damn Church!"

Questeruk said...

“* Stingerski, Jim Butler, Charlie, Questeruk, Robert, Bamboo Bends, Corky, VonHowitzer,& Mouse will all join together and start a radio morning drive show that will top the ratings of all others and will rival Howard Stern.”

I suggest our local ‘Oddfellows Hall’ would be a suitable location for the first planning meeting of our forthcoming radio show.

Tom Mahon said...

douglas becker said:

>>>For example, it is possible to accurately predict future management decisions if you but determine their standard decision making habits based on the particular lusts they prefer. I do so on a regular basis and am from 85% to 100% accurate and getting better all the time.<<<

By filling the blanks, I was able to decipher the above. What you claimed to predict with a high degree of accuracy is quite easy, because all human activity is motivated by lust, which falls into three categories. One, the lust of the flesh; two, the lust of the eyes, and three, the pride of life. As long as we understand these motivational factors, it is easy to predict the outcome of all human activity. But predicting the details of the process that lead to the outcomes is much more difficult, if not impossible.

On the hand, the capacity to prophecy future events is God's, and God's alone. However, God may choose to reveal to his servants future events before they occur.

The fact that Ron was once a minister in UCG immediately disqualifies him from receiving any revelations from God. For a servant of God would have been able to discern that UCG was started by pack of hirelings, who ran away and left the flock, the moment they saw the wolf pack, led by Tkach senior, attacking the flock.

Tom Mahon said...

Stingerski said...

>>>Actually Tom, the only thing you share in common with Thomas Paine is your first name.<<<

I am delighted about that. I would hate be associated with his absurd opinions.

Anonymous said...

"I am delighted about that. I would hate be associated with his absurd opinions."

Absurd opinions? This is coming from a guy who believes in the literal interpretation of a book which features talking animals and a magic boat.

Paul

Anonymous said...

The Religious Right will continue its accent to power in the United States. They are driven by a false conservative ideology, by greed, and by myth.

Their power hasn't peaked even though their foolishness has greatly weaken the United States.

o The Religious Right promoted the Iraq war and continues to support it. They have sullied and destroyed the reputation of the United States around the world. Our national reputation will not be fixed in this generation.

O The Religious Rights economic philosophy of "greed is good" and their "prosperity gospel" have created enormous deficits and a huge housing bubble. We are headed for a major recession. We may suffer a decade of housing price corrections.

o The United States is more polarized then at any time in recent history. The social policies favoring the Evangelical Right have been forced on the entire nation. Our divided society will continue to divide along religious and class lines.

In 2008 the United States will continue to be weakened by the rule of Evangelical Christianity. Our society will be divided even more by their myth and foolishness.

DennisDiehl said...

"Dave is also disqualified when the referees discover pieces of Steuben Crystal in Dave's boxing"

Actually if you really know how Dave works and thinks and what I have seen him do playing baseketball...he'll stop the fight and change the rules so he can win no matter what.

Corky said...

Tom Mahon said...
Stingerski said...

>>>Actually Tom, the only thing you share in common with Thomas Paine is your first name.<<<

I am delighted about that. I would hate be associated with his absurd opinions.

I don't know how to break this to you, Tom, but Thomas Paine had a whole lot more respect for "God Almighty" than you do.

Thomas Paine's God was the Great Creator of heaven and earth, whereas your God is biblegod, the wargod of Israel.

byker bob said...

Hold the presses! Here's a last minute prediction:

UCG will splinter over the decision to move corporate headquarters to Denton, Texas!

BB

Bamboo_bends said...

Robert said...

On 12th May 2008 the Real ID Act comes into law in the US requiring citizens to have an id card with a RFID chip if they want to use air transportation, use governmental buildings or open new bank accounts.

It will be interesting times ahead to see the numbers of people that object to this legislation.



Wot about all those CCD cameras in central London mate? The most surveilled piece of real estate in the world! Who needs an RFID with image recognition and biometrics technology?

My brother works for a company producing the next generation of HD cameras, with resolutions twice what Lucas used in the digital filming of his last 3 Star Wars episodes (which were episodes 1-3). They got a call from London wanting some samples of their cameras, it seems the current ones in London don't have enough resolution to positively identify everyone (but they don't tell the public that).


The one thing that I do agree with the SDAs is that the (US is the rising beast coming out of the land) in the book of Revelation. I can see it happening as the US seeks to dominate world affairs, takes away liberty from its own citizens etc.


Yup and we're coming to take away SABBATH WORSHIP and enforce SUNDAY SCHOOL! We made a deal with the Pope you see.....and he's a gerry....

Anonymous said...

I predict that in 2008 I will work, pay taxes, and see the birth of my next (and last) child.

Regarding American politics and the 2008 election: If either Hilary or Guiliani get their respective party's nod, you can count on 4-8 more years of vicious partisanism. They should both withdraw from the race because it is better for the country...and the world.

Things I hope for in 2008:

Tom Mahon gets his conscience repaired.

Robert learns how to unwind

My parents leave armstrongism *and* the goofy conspiracy theories they buy into.

HD-DVD format wins

Cures are found for a variety of cancers

That God will start healing amputees

That each of us gets wealthy!

I hope each of you have a happy, healthy, and prosperous year!

Jared Olar said...

Dennis claimed: As noted, if Paul was a Pharisee of the Pharisees, above all fellow students and most amazing, he didn't reason or think like one.

I dunno, when I read the Talmud it often sounds a lot like the Jewish rabbis quoted therein, all of them in the tradition of the Pharisees, seemed to utilise their Bibles in ways similar to the way St. Paul utilised the Bible.

Granted there are big differences, since St. Paul was a Christian and the Jewish rabbis in the Talmud were not, but what you call cobbling disparate scriptures together to prove a point.

Which is another way of saying believing Jews and Christians don't read the Old Testament the same way non-Jews and non-Christians do.

And the Roman citizenship was a bit of an embarassment for a Pharisee as well.

Why? The Pharisees weren't Zealots, you know. And it's not like St. Paul couldn't have been born with Roman citizenship and later joined the Pharisees (which, as it happens, is what St. Paul actually says).

Stinger said: I had this type of discussion on another forum about Isaiah 7 and the "virgin" birth. This chapter has nothing to do with any future Jesus Christ. And the conundrum for Christians who believe it does is, then there were two virgin births in history.

Asked and answered in a previous post. Christians believe in two virgin births -- one of a woman who lost her virginity, and another one much later on of a woman who did not.

Really, Stinger, Christianity has been around a pretty long time -- there just aren't any new objections that can be brought against it, that haven't already been responded to many times over. If those objections didn't work the previous 1,000 times they were lodged, why would they be expected to work the 1,001st time?

DennisDiehl said...

"there just aren't any new objections that can be brought against it, that haven't already been responded to many times over.'

Objections need to be neither new nor numerously given to qualify them as good explanations, or the final ture answer to anything.

The idea that "that objection has been answered often and long ago" only washes with those that have stopped asking any more questions about the how and why of any particular topic. Which of course we often tend to do when we settle into a group that is emotionally satisfying.

A very blessed and happy New Year to all. Thank you all for the opportunity to express myelf here, and process the experience, just as we all can no matter the outcome or path chosen.

We're all here to learn.

Jared Olar said...

Objections need to be neither new nor numerously given to qualify them as good explanations

Of course. But it does help if something that has been shown to be invalid or baseless or without force isn't dredged up as if it were somehow unanswerable.

The idea that "that objection has been answered often and long ago" only washes with those that have stopped asking any more questions about the how and why of any particular topic.

It also washes with those who come to understand the invalidity of a particular argument. Otherwise it's just a never-ending round of post mortem equine pummeling.

Happy New Year . . . and Feast of the Circumcision of Jesus, and of Mary, Mother of God. Gotta love those Octaves . . .

Bamboo_bends said...

Norm's settlement seems very reasonable. I thought the rhetoric about Norm was a lot of pre-trial hype.

But then again, I'm not a follower of Norm or any sabbatarian leader.

I still have a tough time imagining him being like Meredith or the Packatollah...but I'm sure he wouldn't have a heathen like me in his group either! He's not getting tithes from me! Tithing to Norm, just the sound of that phrase makes me laugh.

Bamboo_bends said...

Questeruk said...

“* Stingerski, Jim Butler, Charlie, Questeruk, Robert, Bamboo Bends, Corky, VonHowitzer,& Mouse will all join together and start a radio morning drive show that will top the ratings of all others and will rival Howard Stern.”

I suggest our local ‘Oddfellows Hall’ would be a suitable location for the first planning meeting of our forthcoming radio show.


My first impression of the Radio Church of God was that eyeball from the Oddfellows Logo staring down at me as a 7 year old....creepy.... I for one have a face made for Radio and voice made for print.

I can't speak to the rest of my compatriots, but I am continually amazed at how many die-hard Sabbatarians read what we write each week.

I haven't quite figured out if they are just annoyed at free speech and free thinking, or if they're unconsciously seeking something they can't get from the more regulatory blogs, like what people REALLY think of those bloviating spokes-holes from further down the Armstrong income stream. I mean really, they're about as original as a Nigerian scam letter. Sometimes they don't even bother to change the boiler plate.

Someone sent me this from a friend
who's wife is in the UCG...

I picked up a recent "Good News" magazine, and I looked at the ad for literature on the back. I couldn't believe what I read.

If I had the balls to write that sort of stuff given the Church's past baggage, I would have been the star athlete on all of my high school sports teams.

The ad shows an artist's rendering of a multi-headed beast.

Here's some of the salient text:

"We're all interested in what the future holds. .... How will future events affect our families and our loved ones?

Human efforts at predicting the future are notoriously inaccurate.
Self-proclaimed seers and prophets have been proven wrong time and time again. But there is a sure way to know what the future holds. It's written in advance in the pages of the Bible!

....

We've prepared an exciting, eye-opening booklet -The Book of Revelation Unveiled- to help you understand what is going to take place in the days ahead.

.....

You can't afford to be without this priceless knowledge!"


Yadda yadda etc. etc.

Given that the patriarchal founder of their corporate church has a documented track record of being stunningly wrong on any and all prophecies he ever made, by the mathematical principle of establishing a proof by demonstrating the negative I really find it unfathomable that anyone can possibly believe this crap anymore. Beasts, crowns, kings? Blood to the level of horses' bridles. (I did the calculation, trust me, not realistic.)

If I wasn't loosely tied to this church by marriage, it would pass by with some embarrassed amusement. But this ad is seriously deranged.

Whom do they think they're appealing to?

The people who order the book aren't going to learn anything. They could probably quote the scriptures better than the people who wrote it.

I think their motive in putting out the book is to keep an income stream from all of the pensioners who now comprise UCG into thinking their church is "sticking to the trunk of the tree" and "thundering out the lost, true gospel" and revealing "new truth."

All master bait jobs that got people like me hooked in the first place. You two poor dum-dums were raised in it. I fell for it; and gave them money. Embarrassing.

Thanks for listening. I couldn't have written this to anyone else in my life without causing offense somewhere. I needed to vent.

Neotherm said...

I noted some references to insanity in some of the earlier posts. I assure you that R. Weinland is anything but insane. He is a very shrewd religious business man, in the image of HWA.

As this all unfolds, we will be amazed at how Weinland spins this. It will be worthy of the best of Armstrongism. He was not educated at Bricket Wood and Big Sandy for no reason.

The UCG would not engage in the drama of date setting, like Weinland, but they will draft off of his work. They will spin up the proximity in time of the end of the age, dates unspecified. Then they will criticize Weinland for date setting. This will permit them to seize the high ground of reason and make them look as if they have a tempered view. But in principle, they are in the same bag with Weinland.

-- Neo

VonHowitzer said...

My iron fisted grip on last place in my fantasy football league is thorough enough proof to me that I lack prophetic skills, so I'll offer up some "observations".

It's been clear for a number of years that the validity of an XCOG ministry depends heavily upon the ability to emulate the late Harmstrong. PCG has gone heavily into relics, such as the famous "prayer rock", while others content themselves with organizational structure and programs.

Now, with so many of the XCOG leaders having become widowers, the "Abishag Gambit" will come into play. The strongest position will be held by a leader that can combine a second marriage to a younger woman that was also a YaYa.

Great rejoicing will occur in the PCG camp when the most rare of HWA relics is acquired - the "Prosthesis", along with it's Hermes bag. It is not clear whether the Prosthesis will also be personally used in an effort to increase doctrinal rigidity, or whether short sessions handling the object will be sufficient.

Often, when a long time spouse passes, the surviving spouse also dies within a short period of time. It is entirely possible then that one of the XCOG leaders will soon leave the "world stage". Since SOP is to NOT have a successor in place for fear of oppotunistic wolves further splintering the splintered splinters, the XCOG with the deceased leader will become a prey for member vultures in all the other XCOGs.

While they may publicly lament the passing of their "brother", they'll also be pointing out the late man's failures - such as faliing to survive until Christ returns. With so many splinters, this could become quite a messy affair - think of the presidential debates we've been treated to here in the USA, or the "bean scene" from Blazing Saddles, but I repeat myself.

The RCG implodes within 2 years. There are two possible ways for this to happen. One is that Pack's plea for bags of money, right now, is seen as so offensive by the membership that they leave and go elsewhere.

The other is that the membership do respond, and send Pack their assets and equity. Well, duh!, if you take out a home equity loan to send Pack the equity, you still have to pay the bank back. Be stupid enough about it, and you don't have the monthly income to make the payments, especially after your spouse divorces you for doing this behind his/her back. But Dave has his retirement funded.

At least the Pack Rat is upfront about the whole thing. It's "send my the money because I said so", somewhat reminiscent of the late Gene Scott. Can anyone beller "Get on the phones!"? That's in contrast to the ploy used by Paula White, where she fund raises - er, preaches - for half an hour about firstfruits. The point is send God your first check of the new year - first day, first week, first month, doesn't really matter except that you should send it to Paula. (She's not XCOG, but disgusting nonetheless.)

UCG will commission a study group to rationalize their move to Texas. It will not be able to come up with a good reason. The PR man will release a statement that will confuse more than clarify, and the move will go forward.

Joe the Deuce believes he is invincibly unaccountable, until he comes home late one night and Tammi criticizes the logic of his thinking.

WCG officially adopts the rational for the old Seinfeld show, and becomes a "church about nothing". No community outreach, no evangelism, no paid pastors, but a lot of satisifaction over their blog. (And please, local churches, send in that 15% of your income for denominational dues).

Enough of this. I'm almost as verbose as Becker. Happy New Year to one and all!!

KMS

Douglas Becker said...

Summation of Current Topic

God won't be blessing the CoGs in 2008.

Douglas Becker said...

For a servant of God would have been able to discern that UCG was started by pack of hirelings

Nonsense. They're all hirelings.

mel said...

>>>On 12th May 2008 the Real ID Act comes into law in the US requiring citizens to have an id card with a RFID chip if they want to use air transportation, use governmental buildings or open new bank accounts.<<<

Robert, you and Chicken Little are two peas in a pod.

I believe the above is simply untrue. "BS", as they say.

Please, if you have credible evidence please back it up and show the exact legislation and exact wording in that legislation that states that people will need an ID with an RFDI chip "if they want to use air transportation, use governmental buildings or open new bank accounts."

And please, no hokey sites like others that you have recommended.

The WCG, like other destructive cults, gets people to thinking they have the secrets and answers that the rest of the world needs.
It's an alluring thing to believe that one's self is one of the rare holders and dispensers of such knowledge, not to mention that they are on a special mission from God.

You exhibit that trait, with your interpretations of the book of Revelation, as well as doing a "hook, line, and sinker" thing with "information" spouted by hucksters and assorted folks of dubious credibility.

Over the years, after leaving the WCG, I gradually came to think of myself as a regular person, instead of being part of a small elite group that has the secrets needed by mankind.
You can, too! It takes time.

Awwww...I can just hear you now..."BUT I'M SPECIAL AND HAVE SPECIAL KNOWLEDGE AND I'M ON A SPECIAL MISSION FROM GOD AND NEED TO SHARE IT ON GAVIN'S BLOG!"

Lots of copied and pasted "special knowledge"
Oi, vey.

Anonymous said...

we need more accountability ....

Rev. Charles can teach us

mel said...

>>>For a servant of God would have been able to discern that UCG was started by pack of hirelings, who ran away and left the flock, the moment they saw the wolf pack, led by Tkach senior, attacking the flock.<<<

Tom, based on the above, it seems that you believe that there was a possibility of keeping the WCG more like it used to be.
How could that be, given that Tkatch was the new dictator?
He'd just kick out anyone who got in the way of taking the church in the direction of his choosing.

Douglas Becker said...

I'm almost as verbose as Becker.

Much more so. It's best not to explain rainbows to earthworms or to those with ADD.

Robert said...

>>>I believe the above is simply untrue. "BS", as they say.

Mel, i suspect you have not even studied the Real ID Act nor thought about its implications!

From www.realnightmare.org/about/2

But whether or not they obtain second class licenses, those who cannot get Real ID-compliant identity documents could in theory be left unable to fly on commercial aircraft, enter federal facilities such as courthouses or office buildings, or even possibly get a job legally.

Furthermore, the list of activities for which these IDs are required is sure to expand, if the current mindless trend of seeking security through identity papers is not reversed. In fact, the Real ID Act explicitly says that Real IDs shall be required not only for activities like boarding aircraft, but also for “any other purposes that the Secretary [of Homeland Security] shall determine.”

Robert said...

Mel

From the Department of Homeland Security:

"What is a REAL ID license needed for?

The REAL ID Act requires that a REAL ID driver’s license be used for “official purposes,” as defined by DHS. In the proposed rule, DHS is proposing to limit the official purposes of a REAL ID license to those listed by Congress in the law: accessing a Federal facility; boarding Federally-regulated commercial aircraft; and entering nuclear power plants. DHS may consider expanding these official purposes through future rulemakings to maximize the security benefits of REAL ID."

www.dhs.gov/xprevprot/laws/gc_1172767635686.shtm

Tom Mahon said...

mel said...

Tom>>>For a servant of God would have been able to discern that UCG was started by pack of hirelings, who ran away and left the flock, the moment they saw the wolf pack, led by Tkach senior, attacking the flock.<<<

>>>Tom, based on the above, it seems that you believe that there was a possibility of keeping the WCG more like it used to be.<<<

Preserving WCG in its former "glory" was not the issue here. It was the duty of the ministry, who disagreed with the changes to say so, and to openly warn the brethren that what Tkach was introducing was spiritual poison.

If, for instance, your home was on fire, and you ran out of the house leaving the rest of your family asleep, without raising the alarm, wouldn't that be a betrayal your wife and children? And if they, by God's mercy, woke up and escape the fire, and found you outside in the street, and ask you: why didn't wake us? what would be your response? would it be, "I love you all so much, I left you all to be consumed by the flames."

Would they believe that you ever really loved them? Would they ever have the confidence to trust you again, when your previous actions were designed to kill them?

Well, the betrayal of God's children by a hireling ministry was even more grave than that. And I shudder to think of the consequences of their diabolical treachery. For it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God; for God is a consuming fire.

Tom Mahon said...

Charlie said...

>>>I predict that in 2008 I will work, pay taxes, and see the birth of my next (and last) child.<<<

How can you determine that your next child will be your last? I thought children were the of gift, and the fruit of the womb his reward! Are you proposing to reject the gift of God?

Anonymous said...

St. Tom asketh: "How can you determine that your next child will be your last? I thought children were the of gift, and the fruit of the womb his reward! Are you proposing to reject the gift of God?"

How can I determine that my next child will be my last? Tom, you don't *really* think the stork brings them or something, do you? Ever had the birds and bees talk with your Dad?

Seriously though Tom, I love all of my children and do think of them as gifts from God...However, it would be a foolish thing to have more children than I could adequately provide for. It takes a little simple math to figure out what my wife and I make now, our potential future income, and our age will comfortably allow us to provide. The magic number for us is four. Besides, my children are spread out pretty far. I have one in college, one in grade school, one in diapers, and one on the way.

dat's enuf!

papal said...

BambooEnd's said: "Norm's settlement seems very reasonable…"

Norm was forced into that settlement by the judge who reminded him there should have been four trustees … if they should proceed to trial. If Norm was innocent he should have stood on principle--as it was he agreed to repay less than half of what he truly owes to avoid prosecution. Norm made out like a bandit--I predict he will declare bancruptcy before he needs to begin repayment in 2010. Terry lost not only his home, but all of his money, including having to repay over $40,000 in loans to make payments Norm couldn't, and now lives on social security and a small pension--and Norm has succeeded in forcing him to leave Port Austin through eviction from the property.

"the rhetoric about Norm was a lot of pre-trial hype"

Because Norm settled, his supporters will never know how truly base he is. But when one settles, one is not innocent of what he was charged, and that was fraud.

mel said...

Robert, it's simply not true that as of 12th May 2008, US citizens will have to "have an id card with a RFID chip if they want to use air transportation, use governmental buildings or open new bank accounts".

That is untrue.

At best, that's simply bad reporting, and at worst, being deceptive and promoting untruths.

I apologize if my criticism came across as unnecessarily harsh.
I actually share some of your concerns about the Real ID Act, but I think it hurts a person's credibility and case if they play fast and loose with the facts, whether it's saying what you did about the Real ID Act, endorsing the work of a swashbuckling "Indiana-Jones-wannabe" huckster who claims to have found the Ark of the Covenant(hmmm he neglected to reveal it's secret location before he died), or declaring that the tomb of Jesus was definitely discovered.

I'm just looking for good journalistic integrity in the reporters here on Gavin's blog. At least those in the "cabal", lol!

Happy New Year!

Tom Mahon said...

Charlie said:

>>>I love all of my children and do think of them as gifts from God...However, it would be a foolish thing to have more children than I could adequately provide for. It takes a little simple math to figure out what my wife and I make now, our potential future income, and our age will comfortably allow us to provide. The magic number for us is four. Besides, my children are spread out pretty far. I have one in college, one in grade school, one in diapers, and one on the way.<<<

I understand. But you are walking by sight, not by faith.

Stingerski said...

Jared said:

Asked and answered in a previous post. Christians believe in two virgin births -- one of a woman who lost her virginity, and another one much later on of a woman who did not.

Sorry, must have missed it. But I never got a logical answer to this dual virgin birth story on the other forum either. And your answer makes about as much sense as a screen door on a submarine.

If one cares to go back and read Isaiah 7, and dares to take off his or her religious filters first, anyone can easily see this chapter has absolutely nothing to do with Matthew's clumsy attempt to link this episode with the mother of Jesus.

As I said, the Jews have a hearty laugh at Christians who try to hijack their scriptures to prove their own religious conjecture, including Matthew's.

Tom Mahon said...

Stingerski said:

>>>If one cares to go back and read Isaiah 7, and dares to take off his or her religious filters first, anyone can easily see this chapter has absolutely nothing to do with Matthew's clumsy attempt to link this episode with the mother of Jesus.<<<

Initially I ignored most of the posts commenting on the validity or not of Mary's conception and birth of Jesus, because much of what has been stated demonstrate a profound ignorance of the Scriptures, and is tantamount to blasphemy.

However, after reading Stingerski's bold, but ignorant and absurd comment, I felt move to "Answer a fool according his folly, less he be wise in his own conceit."

Now whether Stingerski was ever a member of WCG, I don't know and don't really care. But what is evident from much of his misguided and inane comments, is that he along with Dennis, Paul, Corky, Thomas Munson and a cabal of anonymous scoffers are in the vice of Satan and "The gall of iniquity."

As a consequence, it would be an act of futility to post a coherent and logical rebuttal of his diabolical comments. But for the benefit of the lurkers here, who still have some sanity left, the following might suffice as a warning: "Now therefore be you not mockers, lest your bands be made strong: for I have heard from the Lord God of hosts a consumption, even determined upon the whole earth."

Accordingly, my prophecy for this year is that many of scoffers here will experience severe tribulations. And this is not a prediction that might fail!

Anonymous said...

Saint Tom Prophecieth: "Accordingly, my prophecy for this year is that many of scoffers here will experience severe tribulations. And this is not a prediction that might fail!"

Tom, you will be unpleasantly surprised to be informed that it has been my experience as well as observation that it is the members of the COG's that experienceth tribulations. Most of us have been greatly blessed since leaving armstrongism.

Thomas Munson said...

Saint Tom Prophecieth: "Accordingly, my prophecy for this year is that many of scoffers here will experience severe tribulations. And this is not a prediction that might fail!"

Tom Mahon must be the second witness, he publicly agrees with Ron Weinlands timing of the begining of the tribulation. According to them both it will begin this year. Tom goes so far as to proclaim that it won't be just great tribulation but rather "several severe" tribulations. Amazing prophesying from two false prophets/witnesses!!

He claims we are in the vice of Satan, his make believe boogeyman. Where is this vice? How come I have never seen it, even though I am supposed to be in it?

I am sure Tom Mahon will rebut that the blessings we have are counterfeit blessings from ...... (In the voice of the church lady)Saaataaaan!!!

Anonymous said...

The tribulation can't be in 2008...it's a Presidential election year in the US.

The only tribulation we will have in 2008 is hot air and mudslinging.

Oh, I'm talking about the Presidential election, not to be confused with the hot air and mudslinging among the Armstrongite Churches.

Richard

SmilinJackSprat said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
SmilinJackSprat said...

Tom Mahon said, "[Stingerski] along with Dennis, Paul, Corky, Thomas Munson and a cabal of anonymous scoffers are in the vice of Satan and 'The gall of iniquity.'"

Wow! Strong language for a happy little blog out of New Zealand.

Tom, America's freedom to question anything and everything, including God and Holy Writ, was won by the blood of countless brave young American men for whom freedom meant even more than life itself. From what I have read about your church, none of its members shed his or her blood for the privilege of subjecting themselves to an ersatz Papal state where one man established all truth, and precious few dared to question his opinions.

When folks feel free to question anything and everything, including long-cherished traditions like virgin birth, they're making good use of intelligence and freedom.

Truth is that Isaiah really did say nothing about a virgin birth, Matthew really did quote a mistranslation, and Jesus really was named Joshua (Yehoshua) -- not Emmanuel.

There is no sense in believing the Bible unless one believes what the Bible really says.

Deliberately skewed passages and misapplied, mistranslated verses abound in translation, particularly in those parts of the Bible that were carefully altered and shifted around to drive a wedge between Jews and Christians in the early days of the movement. God didn't divide world religious opinion; men of wicked intent did, and we're still living with the results of their conniving.

Why should having the curiosity, initiative and courage to do honest research put someone into the vice of Satan or the gall of iniquity? God knows an alma (young woman) from a betula (virgin). Is God in the gall of iniquity for understanding Hebrew? What about Matthew, or his redactor, who slipped a misleading quote from the Jewish Septuagint into our Greek New Testaments?

If you're going to fight on God's side, you'd best make sure that you and God are agreed on betulas and almas, and also on whether or not Mary's firstborn was named Josh or Manny. Because if God really did interrupt the long lines of male Davidic royalty recorded in the gospels, in order to produce Jesus from his own line rather than David's, then there is no possibility that Jesus was or is Messiah.

Remember Thomas Jefferson: "I have sworn on the altar of God eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man." One cannot really take God's side without that kind of attitude.

Fight the good fight of faith, and dump the charming fairy tales. Can't you do that? Personally, I respect God enough to do that, and I do a lot of it. Thomas Paine is deemed a heretic by some because he saw clearly through the twisted use that men of dishonorable intent had made of the Hebrew Scriptures, thereby catastrophically altering the Greek writings that at some distant point in the past had had an honest story to tell. My hat's off to him; he was an honest, informed and courageous man.