Monday, 25 February 2008

In the News


Thanks to those who've emailed through these links.

Uncertainty over Ambassador Campus (Pasadena Star News) - Nuthin' is ever simple!

Basil Wolverton mentioned (NYT Book Review) - The Michelangelo of the Radio Church of God.

Then there's a Daily Kos opinion piece that begins:

The first great prophet of the 20th century was Herbert W. Armstrong, a former advertising copywriter who dispensed his dispensationalism by way of a radio program called World of Tomorrow [sic], a monthly newsletter [sic] entitled Plain Truth, and the occasional booklet, and whose second career as a harbinger of doom spanned more than fifty years. Like most advertising copywriters of that period, Armstrong had nothing but contempt for the written form of the English language. In his popular 1956 pamphlet entitled 1975 in Prophecy!, Armstrong's jihad against subdued English communication begins on the title page and continues without pause; let the reader be warned that this is only the first of many inappropriate exclamation points used therein. More to the point, Armstrong here pioneers the art of modern eschatology and serves as a shining example for those would come later, largely by being wrong.

91 comments:

Bamboo_bends said...

Do you realize we've come an entire real estate cycle during the course of selling of the AC campus?

WCG insiders first called the campus a "white elephant" around 1991, at the peak of the California real estate bust of the late 1980s.

It appears they managed to sell it before it caught them out again in 2008.

Or did they? Didn't someone say they were going to develop some condos themselves?

BC said...

Wasn't 1975 IN PROPHECY first published in 1952!!?!!??

Anonymous said...

"Armstrong's jihad against subdued English communication begins on the title page and continues without pause; let the reader be warned that this is only the first of many inappropriate exclamation points used therein."

MY COMMENT - This reminds me of Gerald Waterhouse's constant use of the phrase, "Get the point?"

Richard

Byker Bob said...

I can't wait to see what some of the HWA loyalists have to say about the Pasadena Star News article. I am sure some will see the hand of God saving the AC campus by causing the developer to go into receivership.

There's a long history in the big cities with certain properties of special interest. The Pan Pacific Auditorium and surrounding grounds in Los Angeles were one such property. I loved that old building, and sometimes ate my lunch on the grounds when in that neighborhood. It was from the Streamline Moderne era of architecture, and I always hoped that it would be restored. Some homeless person ended up burning it down.

Generally speaking, before anything gets accomplished with these special interest properties, there are years of transition, and much fighting amongst varied factions. Of course, any plans at all are subject to greater economic issues. The confusion could probably go on for years.

BB

Bamboo_bends said...

Byker Bob said...

Generally speaking, before anything gets accomplished with these special interest properties, there are years of transition, and much fighting amongst varied factions. Of course, any plans at all are subject to greater economic issues. The confusion could probably go on for years.

BB


Such is the glacial nature of democracy in action.

Armstrongism had a low tolerance for the messiness of democracy.

And to think we actually bought into the concept of a theocracy being more efficient....yuck!

tkach's $wiss banker said...

The Tkach's are good at what they do . Their humble roots from war-torn Eastern Europe & ethnic community in Chicago shouldn't fool us: They managed to wrest control of the Armstrong Empire and then turn around and sell it off at the top of a big real estate cycle. They're good (and RICH)!

Weinland Watch said...

And Junior is still drawing at least a six-figure salary from the "free-will" tithes WCG congregations are still required to send in to headquarters.

Corky said...

Hmmmm. Kind of old news isn't it? I notice that it's not really very accurate either. Doesn't matter though, the true Armstrongite isn't going to believe a word of it. It's just Satan lashing out at God's people.

Bamboo_bends said...

tkach's $wiss banker said...

The Tkach's are good at what they do . Their humble roots from war-torn Eastern Europe & ethnic community in Chicago shouldn't fool us: They managed to wrest control of the Armstrong Empire and then turn around and sell it off at the top of a big real estate cycle. They're good (and RICH)!



Persistence is often confused for evil genius.

Anonymous said...

This proud AC grad is saddened by the Daily Kos writer's lack of exposure to Dr. Lynn Torrance's English classes. There he would have learned that in the World Tomorrow Shakespeare will be sidelined in favor of the Armstrong style. Since this (presumably) isn't the World Tomorrow, we're still stuck with Shakespeare. Happily, though, everything will eventually come to him who waits, and waits, and waits.

Those were the days, my friends...

Lussenheide said...

I dug Mad Magazine as a kid. As funny as it may sound by today's standards of things, it was actually considered edgy to read Mad Magazine, and perhaps rebellious. I remember that it was not allowed at school, and that you couldn't bring it to Summer Camp either (and this was in "the world" lol!)

I was always intrigued by Basil Wolverton's involvement with WCG , especially when his comics were the most off the wall and trippy of anything that Mad Magazine ever had.

Imagine that with just a few twists of fate, that Basil Wolverton, (the first ordained Elder in Armstrongism as I recall), somehow ended up in charge of the church instead of Tkach.

I can imagine an 8 million a month free Plain Truth magazine modelled after MAD MAGAZINE !!...

COVER- Picture of GTA with one tooth missing - Caption "What Me Worry?"

SPY VS. SPY - Black spy vs White Spy in all kinds of church adventures. Faces bare a strange resemblance to Rod Meredith and Stan Rader.

THE LIGHTER SIDE- Explores various topics in short strips with light satire, ie, The Lighter Side of "Third Tithe", or The Lighter Side of "Marked and Disfellowshipped".

THE FOLD IN- First looks like a nightmarish, hellish , Atomic Blast, but fold it in and it is a beatific vision of "The Wonderful World Tommorow".

Ah but for a few twists of fate, it would have been a reality!...

Bill Lussenheide, Menifee, CA USA

Anonymous said...

I remember the 1979 Receivership crisis and Tkach Sr mobilized some senior citizens to be in the sit in. I'm sure that the sale of the property to become some senior citizen housing would have been a goal of his.

Anonymous said...

http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1716987,00.html

Good Article about US religion

Study is online:

http://pewforum.org/

mel said...

Here's a little taste of what might have been.

Anonymous said...

Years ago, in an Ambassador Hall restroom, I was leaving as Basil Wolverton was arriving. He asked me how I was taking to AC life.

I told him that at first I had been ecstatic, but that my ardor had cooled as new realities had begun to crowd the earlier ecstacy. I told him I had decided to hunker down and make it work, and that things had been improving since then.

He said, "It sounds a lot like getting married."

I still chuckle over that. Wolverton was a good man to have around.

Tom Mahon said...

Anonymous said...

>>>This proud AC grad is saddened by the Daily Kos writer's lack of exposure to Dr. Lynn Torrance's English classes.<<<

And you could have added, or the writer's failure to recognise his need to get a book on basic grammar and syntax, and READ it. If he understood his need, we might have been spared the term, "dispensationalism."

>>>There he would have learned that in the World Tomorrow Shakespeare will be sidelined in favor of the Armstrong style.<<<

Well, I don't know what Dr. Torrance taught you about the writing styles of Shakespeare and HWA, and which one will be preferred in the world tomorrow, but I can assure you that God has already given his children a pure language. So those who are waiting for the writing style of either Shakespeare or HWA to be adopted in the world tomorrow, will be bitterly disappointed!

Gavin said...

Tom proclaimed:
"I can assure you that God has already given his children a pure language."

My experience with people who begin with those words ("I can assure you...") is that they're - to borrow a phrase from our American brethren - "whistin' Dixie." They can't assure you at all, and are trying hard to assure themselves.

But, for the sake of the argument, maybe Tom would like to assure us exactly which "pure language" he thinks God has "already given his children."

Anonymous said...

Self Righteous Tom Moron wrote, ""I can assure you that God has already given his children a pure language."

MY COMMENT - Oh really? And, what would that pure language be? Self righteous Tom Moron, please enlighten us on what that pure language is. Oh, this should be worth a good laugh!

Richard

Tired Skeptic said...

God has already given his children a pure language

It's secret. Not even the ones who have it can speak it.

As for Basil Wolverton, who can forget his Mad Magazine CarToons featuring different kinds of drivers.

And finally, today, dear friends, what are we to make of the allegation that Hebert Armstrong was involved with the Ku Klux Klan briefly in the 1920s? Sure, off topic, but inquiring minds want to, fairly demand to know [those of us whose curiosity was not killed by Armstrongism, that is].

Well, OK, the AC Pasadena campus. When God removed His Name from Shiloh, that was it. No going back. Give it up. It's fallen to the pagans. No, wait, Dennis Diehl will contend that it was owned by the pagans in the beginning. OK, then: New and different pagans got it and now it's nothing but trouble for them. But that's what the City of Pasadena is like -- they don't really know how much to run things. Local government is really hard and they don't have the hang of it yet.

Anonymous said...

"I can assure you that God has already given his children a pure language."

I can assure you it is He--Brew

Aramaic would be second and Greek third. You have to have options for those that can't produce that phlegmn almost spit, sound in their diction.

Anonymous said...

God has already given his children a pure language

Say, isn't that a form of mind control by cults?

Anonymous said...

"As a language, Hebrew belongs to the Canaanite group of languages. Hebrew (Israel) and Moabite (Jordan) are Southern Canaanite while Phoenician (Lebanon) is Northern Canaanite. Canaanite is closely related to Aramaic and to a lesser extent South-Central Arabic."

Doh! Canaanite! Dogs! Devils! Turrests! Ewwww, nasty Moabites...that bites!

Hey..no Egyptian? You'd think 400 years soaking in Egypt may have produced a tune or two (besides many of the Psalms of course) Maybe they weren't there in the way we thought they were.

Anonymous said...

Now..has Tom sent anyone a picture yet? Must be lost in cyberspace...yeah that's it.

Anonymous said...

I haven't seen any pictures of self righteous Tom Moron floating around on the internet yet.

My guess is that Tom displays a mop of untidy black hair, a slight resemblance of Adolph Hitler and a smirk which says, "I am only here because I am better than all of you."

Richard

Anonymous said...

dunno...I"m kinding picking up on Tom as a red head which of late has been shown to be the genetic trait Northern Europeans have inheirited directly from Neanderthal populations during the ice age. Some freckles perhaps. A Halo for sure with a penchant to speak in Mid-evil Bible talk. "Behold" and all that....

I guess a pic would help for sure. Non visual and even written impressions are so shallow and often send one off on the wrong trail of judgement, condemnation and rancour.

Lussenheide said...

"TOM" Pic Now Posted!..???

http://sp1.yt-thm-a01.yimg.com/image/25/m7/3914359413

(Cut and paste into browser)

Bill Lussenheide, Menifee, CA USA

Anonymous said...

Bill...you're so bad! For better or worse, Tom is where Tom is, I am where I am, we are all where we all are based on our interpretation of our experiences with religion.

Admitedly, if we allow it, the stress can take it's toll and we can end uplooking like that!

http://www.funny-games.biz/pictures/763-provocative-monkey.html

Byker Bob said...

I'm against a lot of the indefensible concepts and positions that some Christians take. They make Christianity appear ridiculous to educated atheists and agnostics. We've covered some of those ideas here, like good only coming from God and religion, a 6,000 year old creation, and the inerrancy of the Bible in it's present form. Some of these ideas don't even come from the erroneous tenets of Armstrongism, they derive from the evangelical faiths.

Now another one has surfaced: the perfect language. While some of the material Apostle Paul wrote does seem to support charism, a gift used in communicating directly with God, I believe language is only necessary for communication amongst humans. Humans are limited in their perceptions to certain frequencies and wavelengths, and use language to record and transmit their thoughts and imagery in perceivable form to one another. The idea that spiritual beings would need to communicate in Hebrew, Aramaic, Greek, or King James English (you know- "if it was good enough for Jesus and the disciples", as the old joke goes) is ridiculous.

BB

Corky said...

Tom's pure language:

"I assure you"
"you may be surprised to learn"
"You may be pleased to learn"
"You may be disappointed to learn"
"will be bitterly disappointed"
"Mr. Armstrong"
"cabal"
"when you beg for mercy"
"God's apostle"
"the truth"
"perfect character"

Lussenheide said...

Using all of the above Corky's posted "TOMisms" in one sentence...

The truth, I assure you, and you may be surprised to learn, is that God's Apostle, Mr. Armstrong, in perfect character, will be bitterly disappointed when you beg for mercy!

Bill Lussenheide, Menifee, CA USA

Anonymous said...

Corky, that's the bomb! Nice list, but you forgot to add the ubiquitous exclamation point!

Paul

Anonymous said...

Lussenheide:

Kinda like Dave Pack's perfect language.

"I have never quite given a sermon like this before except when I invented the Plain Truth distribution program, along with all overarching principles. We have the largest theological website in the world. Billions know our name or will soon and if you have any money...send it in. All of it. Time is short so I intend to build a permanent campus with TV studio, Auditorium so the community can like us, maybe a sports complex and security office. Yes brethren, I am an Apostle.... And yes brethren, You are not allowed to question or suddenly get a voice and ask what I intend to do with your money. God has now shown me that, because time is short, I can build God's work a museum and a permanent campus with your money you just sent..did I say, time is short?

Anonymous said...

Tom is a fat little bald man with a huge inferiority complex.

Stingerski said...

I think most here will agree that any such talk about a "perfect language" is utter nonsense. Even the gods have no such language, as even they cannot communicate perfectly.

And certainly, St. Tom's Apostle Armstrong could not get his point across much of the time. In fact, neither can even Neotherme's god. (Thus, most people will end up in Neo's version of Hell, due to his god, who cannot communicate any better than he does.)

The keyword here is "communication." And no human, whether android, alien, or god being has ever done that perfectly. Thus, no such "perfect" language can ever exist.

No Dr. Spock mind meld exists either. Humans can't just wish for such a fantasy as a perfect language. Because the minute we make any progress on earth is the same minute that our language(s) changes.

This is called evolution.

DennisDiehl said...

Tom noted:

"but I can assure you that God has already given his children a pure language."

I think it would be obvious that the purest language would be the one given by God to Adam and Eve.

Since the descendents of Adam and Eve spoke Hebrew, I think we can safely assume it was Hebrew that God considered the most perfect language humans could ever speak, short of the language of Angels which was off limits for humans.

God looked on all he did and said it was very good so that would include the language of Adam and Eve.

Adam uttered the first perfect and pure phrase...

"Ewww, I have named all these creatures and can't find one fit for me. Not that I was thinking I could. No not that!"

and

"Well hello there Mama. Owww..what the...I can't move, my side is killing me."

Noah preserved the perfect language in his own usage as noted by the phrase...

"You touch my boat again, and I'll kill you myself before it rains."

"Shovel faster, we're tipping, we're tipping..."

and

"I sure made shum damn good grape jews boisz, din't I?"

Moses preserved the perfect language in phrases like..

"Take all their gold and jewels. They owe us bigtime the bastards.."

"Thou shalt not steal..."

"What? you couldn't wait forty days for me to come back? Let every man kill his neighbor..."

"Thou shalt not kill."

and so on.

Abraham, we know, preserved the perfect Hebrew found in such phrases as ...

"What? Oh no,no,no She's not my wife. She's my sister. She's yours."

"Come on son. Let's go camping up on Mt. Moriah. I promise you'll never forget it."

and

"You're gonna use that piece of flint to cut off what to make me how special?"

Isaac shows just how perfect the Hebrew can be transmitted by saying ...

""What? Oh no, no, no. She's not my wife. She's my sister. She's yours."

...in exactly the same circumstances as his dad without errors.

And who can deny that David spoke the pure language of God when he said..

"OMG...YHVH be praised, she is taking a bath today. 'Hello, hello...look up here!'"

It gets no more pure than that.

Only in Hebrew can such meaningful events and emotions be expressed in the one pure language.

Anonymous said...

Tom is a poor, sick puppy. Someone get the "blue juice" and put him down.

Anonymous said...

A pure language would be pig latin.

Corky said...

The pure language was gonna be Latin, as evidenced by the Mass being said in Latin and Doctor's prescriptions for drugs written in Latin.

I would vote for English but I'm biased. Perhaps Spanish would be the simplest language for the entire world to learn.

Seriously, a one world language would solve a lot of problems.

Anonymous said...

and create a lot more

Anonymous said...

Pig Latin for Tom

Tom Mahon said...

Gavin said...

Tom proclaimed:

>>>"I can assure you that God has already given his children a pure language."<<<

Gavin>>>But, for the sake of the argument, maybe Tom would like to assure us exactly which "pure language" he thinks God has "already given his children."<<<

The prophet Zephaniah prophesied that with the advent of Jesus God would give his people a pure language thus: "For then will I turn to the people a pure language, that they may call upon the name of the Lord, to serve him with one consent."

Now it would take a long and laborious disquisition, and references to some very obscure scriptural texts, and no doubt it would a thankless task, to fully explain that the Holy Spirit is the pure language of God.

However, Paul in his first epistle to the Corinthians introduced three important concepts. One, divine revelation; two, illumination and three, verbal inspiration.

Now, God often reveals thing to people without explaining what they mean. For example, God revealed many things to Daniel, but never told him what they meant. That process is described as revelation without illumination. But the Holy Spirit gave him the verbal inspiration to write down what he saw and heard.

But under the NT dispensation, where the Holy Spirit is given to God's elect, we see the fulfilment of all three concepts. So Paul was inspired to write: "Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God." And please pay careful attention to the next verse thus: "Which things also we speak," therein lies the verbal inspiration,"not in the WORDS(or language)"which man's wisdom teaches, but which the Holy Spirit teaches; comparing spiritual things with spiritual."

I hope you note that Paul is saying, that the Holy Spirit teaches the speaker or the writer the spiritual WORDS to select to explain what God has revealed to him. This is the pure language that God has given to his children. And it is called, the Word of God!

Sadly, I don't expect those whose minds have been warped by anger and bitterness to understand what I have briefly explained. But believe me, I have merely scratched the surface of this sublime doctrine.

Stingerski said...

Tom saith :

Sadly, I don't expect those whose minds have been warped by anger and bitterness to understand what I have briefly explained.

Anger? Bitterness?? Hey, I see a lot of humor around here, esp. since you introduced such a comical topic as a "pure language." (BTW, the French have tried enforcing this with their own language by governmental edict, but it was a flop. Hot dog and T-Shirt are still in use there. And your god won't have any more success with this than they did.)

And Tom, if you can't communicate your ideas to the point that all the rest of us goims can understand it, then the fault is with you, not us. Perhaps your "perfect" language needs further perfecting :-)

Tired Skeptic said...

God often reveals thing to people without explaining what they mean

And a pure language would help this how? Is Tom saying that God is imperfect in communicating?

"Be you therefore perfect" just doesn't measure up when God doesn't explain just what it means.

There are also a lot of doubts about what all those words in Scripture mean: Centuries have gone by and nobody can agree on the simplest things. Even the church hopping Apostle Paul wasn't very well understood and had lots of problems communicating with Peter. And a pure language would not have been much help with the early church members, since they had to have a council to decide such simple things as circumcision and what the Gentiles should do.

Church hopping Apostle Paul?

Yes, on the Sabbath, he'd visit one Synagogue or another. Sometimes he'd go to Mars Hill to what essentially was Pagan worship. And occasionally he'd go down to the river and have a potluck with believers. One wonders what he'd do today? Go to CoG7 one weekend, then United another, hit the SDA and the Baptists? All things to all men? To spread the gospel?

You know, this pure language thing could catch on. It is certainly more clear an issue than, say, trying to map the holydays to a mythical Plan of God. Nowhere in the New Testament is there an indication of Armstrongist eschatological predestination except for Revelation and apparently Herbert Armstrong didn't even get that right, for the second resurrection [if there be such a thing] is clearly different than the Great White Throne judgment. But then, Biblical illiterates wouldn't understand the proposition, being stuck in the mindset of cultists by the restrictive private understanding of surreptitiously redefined terms used to obfuscate the manipulation of adult eighth graders. The first century apostles didn't seem to understand anything beyond Jesus and him crucified. It must have been some sort of language barrier....

As for Zechariah, could someone explain those flying scrolls? It just seems that the prophet could have been a bit daft: After suffering terribly, he just went bonkers and started prophesying that SOME DAY everyone would KEEP THE FEAST!!!! That everyone would have THE TEMPLE SYSTEM BACK AND THERE WOULD BE SACRIFICES AGAIN!!!! It's just too bad that was all pretty much forgotten by the Apostles of the first century after the coming of Jesus who was to be the sacrifice which ended all other sacrifices forever. A pure language could not help that contradiction in any way.

We look forward to a pure language so we can insult one another more perfectly and misunderstand each other perfectly.

Byker Bob said...

The notes in my study Bible speculate that Paul is referring to the charismatic gifts in the verses partially quoted by Tom from II Cor.

This would make sense, too, that this special language of prayer, language of the angels, or whatever we choose to call it, could have been one of the gifts of the Holy Spirit in the early apostolic days.

Armstrong used to point at the charismatic churches, and refer to their tongues as glossolalia (which they well might have been). He indicated or implied that they were faking one of the gifts of the Holy Spirit, (all the while he was faking the gift of prophecy), explaining that true tongues were being able to speak in ones own language, and have everyone listening understand your words in their language. But, this gift Paul is referring to seems separate and completely different from HWA's explanation (which the charismatics refer to as the gift of "diverse tongues")

We were taught so much error. The likelihood is that Jesus was actually crucified on a cross with a crossbar, not a stake. This gift of tongues, in a special perfect language understood by God and the angels might well have been completely different from what we were taught, as well. There is much that we simply can't know, because we were not back there to see it all, and only have errant scriptures to give us a general understanding. That is why pick and choose legalism is so ridiculous.

BB

DennisDiehl said...

"God often reveals thing to people without explaining what they mean"

Noooo....humans OFTEN come up with ideas in their heads and try to pass them off as communication from a Deity. This effectively removes them from any personal responsibility for the thoughts or the outcomes.

Dave Pack often says..."We just need to see what God reveals he wants done."

This really means.."I have some ideas that I'm working on and I'll let you know how it's going when I choose to... Please don't try to come up with a voice of your own. Please send in more money so I can bring the voices in my head to pass."

Mental hospitals are filled with people whom God revealed the unexplained to. All that need mental health counseling are not asking for it.

purplehymnal said...

stingerski said:

"And certainly, St. Tom's Apostle Armstrong could not get his point across much of the time. In fact, neither can even Neotherme's god. (Thus, most people will end up in Neo's version of Hell, due to his god, who cannot communicate any better than he does.)"


Not that I'm picking on Neo, but I would respectfully submit that the poster calling themselves "Neotherm", if it is the same Neotherm as here, apparently does not even understand his own god, let alone anyone else's.

From the Faith & Practice document generated in 2007 by the North Pacific Yearly Meeting:

(All emphasis is mine.)

"One central area of belief which has received considerable attention over the years is the relationship of Quakerism to Christianity. Whether one interprets the Quaker movement as a strand within Protestantism or as a third force distinct from both Protestantism and Catholicism, the movement, both in its origin and in the various branches which have evolved, is rooted in Christianity.

However, from its inception it has offered both a critique of many accepted manifestations of Christianity and an empathy with people of faith beyond the bounds of Christianity.

Some Friends have placed particular emphasis on the Gospel of Jesus Christ, while others have found more compelling a universal perspective emphasizing the Divine Light enlightening every person.

One of the lessons of our own history as a religious movement is that an excessive reliance on one or the other of these perspectives, neglecting the essential connectedness between the two, has been needlessly divisive and has drawn us away from the vitality of the Quaker vision at its best."


I could be wrong. But Neo's situation here strikes me as a prime example of how human beings can and do routinely screw up religion.

Anonymous said...

I never cease to be amazed by those who can be so certain in their conviction of things in the bible which are so clearly not there, or ambiguously there at best.

It is a book that has been redacted, retranslated, repackaged, and presented with prejudice hundreds if not, thousands of times over the centuries...however, a broke and failed businessman, afraid of actual work, claims to have alone, been able to put all the pieces together and here in 2008 people still fall for it.

Many answers to life and the universe are not contained in the bible. That sponge is wrung dry. Time to use our intellect and look elsewhere.

S.J. - My wife and I thank you for those adorable booties. Card will be going out soon!

Thanks to everyone else that conveyed their well wishes a couple weeks ago. All are doing very well.

Anonymous said...

Sadly, I don't expect those whose minds have been warped by anger and bitterness to understand what I have briefly explained......

Tom, you sound like you are an IRS hot line operator. Call one and get one set of directions, call another and get a different set of directions. Reminds me of Mr. Confusion, Herbert W. Armstrong.

Anonymous said...

Tom said:

"Sadly, I don't expect those whose minds have been warped by anger and bitterness to understand what I have briefly explained......"

Not as in "sadly, and of course"?

Maybe Tom is Bob Thiel

Tom Mahon said...

Stingerski said...

>>>And Tom, if you can't communicate your ideas to the point that all the rest of us goims can understand it, then the fault is with you, not us. Perhaps your "perfect" language needs further perfecting :-)<<<

This comment presupposes that you have the capacity to understand everything you read, which I very much doubt.

Anyway, I have not failed to notice, that instead of commenting on the contents of my post, you have digressed to talk nonsense, using the vulgar practice of butchering the English language.

Tom Mahon said...

DennisDiehl said...

Tom>>>"God often reveals thing to people without explaining what they mean"<<<

DD>>>Noooo....humans OFTEN come up with ideas in their heads and try to pass them off as communication from a Deity. This effectively removes them from any personal responsibility for the thoughts or the outcomes.<<<

Instead of making absurd, sweeping generalisations about the billions of people who have ever lived, you might gain some credibility with those who are neither excessively dense nor unscrupulously argumentative, if you speak only for yourself! But then, misery loves company!

Tom Mahon said...

purplehymnal said...

>>>I could be wrong.<<<

It would have much more helpful, if you had made sure that you were right before commenting. But so far, I have not read anything posted by you, that would suggests that you are capable of discerning between your right and left hand.

DennisDiehl said...

Tom>>>"God often reveals thing to people without explaining what they mean"<<<

DD>>>Noooo....humans OFTEN come up with ideas in their heads and try to pass them off as communication from a Deity. This effectively removes them from any personal responsibility for the thoughts or the outcomes.<<<

Tom notes:

"Instead of making absurd, sweeping generalisations about the billions of people who have ever lived....."

I observe...

Perhaps a vote on which of the above two statements is "an absured sweeping, generalization" is in order. If I am the sweeper, I'll amend my comments when you send your pic. I was not speaking of billions, but rather only those that tend to feel God is revealing the unexplained to them.

Anonymous said...

Tom, your snotty attitude in every comment you make is intriguing. If you had to pick, which of the following you fancy yourself to be emulating in your Christian walkm which would it be. And you can't say "all of them depending."

Jesus
Christ
Jesus Christ
Paul
El of the Old Testament
YHVH who evolved from EL of the OT
Lucifer
Baalzebub
David..A man after YHVH's own heart
Simon Magus
The person of the Holy Spirt
The Pneuma of the Holy Spirit
Just Pneuma

Anonymous said...

Since I know nothing of Tom but from his rancourous intrusion into this site, in defense of his deeply held belief that "if I have not love, I am nothing," perhaps it is a DNA problem? Definately Not Accurate

At any rate Thomas, when you speak for your idea of God or Jesus, you do harm to the cause.

DennisDiehl said...

I found this interesting and a way in which some COG Witnesses are like Paul.

"I wanna talk about me!"

Of the 22 times in the Bible where Paul is referred to as an "apostle", only twice is he referred to as an apostle by someone other than himself! These two instances came from the same person. Not from Jesus, or any of the original apostles, but from Paul's close traveling companion and personal press secretary Luke.

No other epistle author in the Bible wrote like Paul. This would be true on a number of levels, but one aspect is of particular interest when we are considering how Paul views himself. He had a way of drawing attention to himself with his usage of personal pronouns. When it comes to how often he uses words like, "I", "me", "my", or "mine", the overall rate in his epistles is almost three times that of his next closest rival.

In the book of Romans, Paul refers to himself 103 times, which is rate of about 18.2 per thousand! That is 13x greater than Hebrews. In 1 Corinthians, Paul refers to himself 175 times, in 2Corinthians 103 times again, and in the relatively short book of Galatians, he refers to himself 69 times which is a rate of 25 personal pronouns per 1000 words!

It should be evident that Paul is at least as concerned with making a statement about himself as he is in communicating what he believes to be the truth about God...

If you ever waded through on of Dave Pack's sermons, you'd loose track of all the "I", "Me" and "my" long before the end.

Off topic I guess..:)

Anonymous said...

Tom says

"Instead of making absurd, sweeping generalisations about the billions of people who have ever lived, you might gain some credibility with those who are neither excessively dense nor unscrupulously argumentative, if you speak only for yourself! But then, misery loves company!"

It's really creepy how people see in others the very thing they seem to do over and over themselves.

Projection I suppose.

Anonymous said...

Tom is a fat little bald man who reeks with BO along with his huge inferiority complex.

Anonymous said...

Oh, I think I see where I may have incurred the wrath of Tom.

To Tom Mahon:

I was quoting stingerski's words about you, but the main point of MY post was explaining why Neotherm came across as a hypocrite to his own "faith". As for Stinger's comment about you, if it had been redacted, would have destroyed the context of my argument, so I left it in.

As it is, I have no opinion for or against your views, and did not intend a personal offense.

Anonymous said...

Is the screen name "Stingerski" a play on the name of the former AC Registrar?

Neotherm said...

To Stingerski and PurpleHymnal:

I am sorry, I haven't looked at this blog for a while. I discovered references to myself, but I do not know what it is about. I could not piece together the issue from what you both had written.

Could you explain, please.

Thanks.

-- Neo

Anonymous said...

Hi Neo,
I thought it was just me. I can't figure out the points made about "Neo" either since I don't even see you have commented on this posting.

The "let's talk about people" crowd must have lacked something constructive to say.

BC said...

The new pure language cannot be Hebrew, Aramaic, Greek or Latin for sure because for the pure language there must be both A CLEAR DISTINCTION BETWEEN UPPER AND LOWER CASE AND EXCLAMATION POINTS!!!!!

Tired Skeptic said...

From the very beginning I knew who and what Tom was.

My long term goal was to find all his hot buttons and press them like crazy.

It seems that he just hasn't caught on and keeps responding.

Except when he really doesn't have a viable answer: Then he is silent... very quiet... tacitly deliberately ignoring the things which torpedo his positions.

By this time it is clear he is extremely careless and seems to live in a totally fact free environment, confident he is secure within his own incompetence which he just doesn't even see. To understand just how bad the issues of incompetence really are, it is only necessary to breeze through the following study by the guys from Cornell:

Unskilled and
Unaware of It: How Difficulties in Recognizing One's Own Incompetence Lead to
Inflated Self-Assessments


Tom will never understand his pathetic incompetence until he gains a measure of competence. Given his terrible example of misquoting Scripture and even putting words into the mouth of Moses, it's not likely with his utter arrogance that he will ever achieve any credibility whatsoever.

It's useful for occasional amusement. Incompetent people are hilarious.

Or better yet, may become the topic of the next Thesis for a degree.

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

Neo:

Just forget it. I probably should not have said anything anyway.

Neotherm said...

Purplehymnal: As you like. Your comments seemed to be embedded in some material about Quakers. Realize that Quakerism comes in many stripes. I am an evangelical Quaker with some Universalist leanings. (The term evangelical here does not the term commonly used to describe the evangelical movement in the United States. I am decidedly against that movement.)

-- Neo

SmilinJackSprat said...

Because the word, apostle, occurs so often on these pages, and does in this blog, I thought it might be helpful for Christians or ex-Christians, who seem to be the majority of contributors here, to be aware of what "apostle" means to Jews now -- and therefore, on the basis of context, must have meant to those who so often used the term in documents that became the NT.

In the English speaking world Jews almost never use the word, apostle; they use its Hebrew equivalent, sheliach. A sheliach is an emissary, a trusted messenger. Almost anyone can be a sheliach of one type or another in Judaism.

For example, a repaired Torah scroll, damaged during WW2, was recently sent from the United States to Bulgaria. It was accompanied by a sheliach, a responsible Jewish congregant who could be entrusted with so sacred an object as a Sefer Torah (Torah Scroll). There was no formal ordination prior or removal of credentials after he completed his task. He simply was no longer a sheliach because his mission had been accomplished.

In the branch of Hassidic Judaism called Chabad/Lubavitch, their schluchim (E. European pronunciation, pl.) are sent all over the world to strengthen Jewish communities wherever Jews live. These schluchim are Rabbis, sent to accomplish rabbinical tasks, which by their nature could last a lifetime.

My point is that the word is not in any way unusual in Jewry. In a “kingdom of priests” (Ex. 19:6), Godly tasks are and should be typical of Jewish life. Christians read the word in their Bibles as "apostle," from the Greek, and seem to attach extraordinary meaning to it, but it nonetheless refers, quite simply, to an emissary or individual entrusted with a mission. The mission might indeed be extraordinary, but on the other hand might not. It all depends. The word is used constantly in the conversations of observant Jews, and therefore was, quite more than likely, used similarly in the nascent Christian world when "Christianity" was still a movement within Judaism.

SmilinJackSprat said...

In the above post I left out one of the most recognized "apostolic" offices in Judaism, that of the "sheliach tzibbur," or emissary of the congregation. This person is the Cantor or Hazzan -- who sings prayers with authorization from the congregants who have sent him or her to God on their behalf. Go to a large synagogue and hear a genuine apostle at work.

Anonymous said...

'DD:
found this interesting and a way in which some COG Witnesses are like Paul.

"I wanna talk about me!" '

When someone has something important to say they need to establish their credentials - especially when there are 'enemies'

Anonymous said...

' Smilinj
In the English speaking world Jews almost never use the word, apostle; they use its Hebrew equivalent, sheliach. A sheliach is an emissary, a trusted messenger '

The NT recognizes thirteen apostles who have divine authority and represent Jesus faithfully conveying his Word. There are also 'messengers (apostles) of the churches' who are indeed 'sheliach'. Recognizing this clarifies use of the word - including 'women apostles'

Tired Skeptic said...

In case some of you think that Tom is being treated unfairly, pushing his hot buttons is useful to extract information.

A couple of us are collaborating on creating a new article about Armstrongism and we thought what a better way to gather material than to get it from the horse's mouth, so to speak. Well, OK, maybe the other end of the horse, but you get the idea.

DennisDiehl said...

"When someone has something important to say they need to establish their credentials - especially when there are 'enemies'"

I don't understand the comment.

purplehymnal said...

OK everybody watch me stick foot in mouth and laugh:

Neo says:

"I am an evangelical Quaker with some Universalist leanings. (The term evangelical here does not the term commonly used to describe the evangelical movement in the United States. I am decidedly against that movement."


Now I'm really confused: Are you saying you're decidedly against the evangelical Quaker movement, or against the conservative American evangelical movement?

Because your posts seem to me, to fall more in line with the latter than the former.

Are you also the same "neotherm" as the one with an article over at the Scrollery? And if that is the case, do you belong to the same Quaker practices organization as the publisher's founders?

With respect, you do not seem to have "some Universalist leanings", at least not from your scripture-laden Jesus-exhorting posts here. That was the crux of my argument.

Anonymous said...

"When someone has something important to say they need to establish their credentials - especially when there are 'enemies'"

I've mentioned it before, but in the ICG GTA gave an angry sermon about that subject- someone wrote in criticizing his constant use of the word "I," as in "I have dined with _____ and I flew the FanJet and I was heard on ______ radio stations," ect.
He waded through Romans and pointed out Paul's use of "I" as a defense.


Paul

Bamboo_bends said...

Tom said...
"God often reveals thing to people without explaining what they mean"



Is it really "revealed" if it isn't understandable? Isn't the very definition of revealed, to make it clear and impart knowledge?

Byker Bob said...

There are different shades of meaning behind the frequent usage of the word "I".

How it is used, depends largely on the character of the individual involved. In the gospels, Jesus is recorded as using the term "the Son of Man" many times in lieu of "I". But, Jesus didn't write his own biographical material. Luke wrote much of Paul's biography, but Paul wrote a considerable amount himself. His writing style contrasts with that of the writers of the gospels, whomever they might have been.

We all have our personal experiences, and sometimes it's good to share. Some people never break down their barriers and allow you to see the real person that they are. Who would want to be taught by someone whom you can never get to know? It helps to know that others consider themselves to be human, and are willing to share some of their life experiences.

On the other hand, when using these personal experiences, one often runs the risk of becoming a boring braggart, or authoritarian.
We've all run across the types who, every time they use the word "I", you automatically know that they do so intending for it to be an example as to how all listeners are supposed to behave. I'm terribly sorry, but the only one I'm prepared to pattern my life after is Jesus Christ. Follow the leader is the idea. Not the followers. That's what got us into trouble before.

Paul probably felt incredible guilt thoughout his life for what he had done to Christians, even though he knew he had been forgiven, not only by God, but by the very people he had tormented before he became their teacher.

BB

Neotherm said...

Purplehymnal:

I am that same Neotherm. This is going to be a big bore to most people but, here goes:

1) Theologically I am a moderate Calvinist.
2) In practice and denominational allegiance, I am a conservative Quaker. I believe in silent worship and the mystical elements of Quakerism.
3) I also believe that evangelism is a responsibility. But this simply means freely making the message available. It does not mean that I belong to the American religious subculture known as Evangelicalism (Pat Robertson, Jim Bakker, etc.).

So I would pitch my tent somewhere between the Conservative and Evangelical branches of the Religious Society of Friends.

I believe in a restrictivist model for salvation. But I am studying Universalism and I believe it has some merit but I have not yet decided.

Do I believe that most people will choose Hell? Yes. Would I like to not believe that? Yes.

Most people do not categorize themselves so finely, but I find it easier to follow this approach.

So there you have it. I can see where you might be confused.

-- Neo

Byker Bob said...

A quick word about Neo. I think he has made some excellent contributions in our efforts to diffuse and debunk Armstrongism. The article at the Scrollery is spot on, and Gavin has both reviewed and posted excerpts from Neo's book, I believe on the old Ambassador Watch site.

We're all entitled to our post-Armstrong beliefs, or lack thereof.

BB

Tom Mahon said...

Bamboo_bends said...

Tom>>>"God often reveals thing to people without explaining what they mean"<<<

>>>Is it really "revealed" if it isn't understandable? Isn't the very definition of revealed, to make it clear and impart knowledge?<<<

Don't people reveal things to you every day that you may or may not understand?

Revelation means the unveiling of something that was hidden or not known. For example, Einstein revealed to the world his theory of relativity, but most people in the world don't understand it, and that applies to many who have spent years studying it.

You are actually confusing revelation with illumination. They are different sides of the same coin!

Tom Mahon said...

Tired Skeptic said...

>>>From the very beginning I knew who and what Tom was.<<<

You don't even know who or what you are, so don't flatter yourself, Douglas Becker, that you know me!

>>My long term goal was to find all his hot buttons and press them like crazy.<<

Another flattering delusion, if there ever was one!

Tom Mahon said...

SmilinJackSprat said...

>>>Because the word, apostle, occurs so often on these pages, and does in this blog, I thought it might be helpful for Christians or ex-Christians, who seem to be the majority of contributors here, to be aware of what "apostle" means to Jews now..<<<

Your definition might be helpful to former Christians, but it is both inaccurate and irrelevant to genuine Christians.

However, for the record, the word Apostle denotes the highest office in the NT church of God, and it comes with absolute authority from God in the administration of his church.

Of course, it would be another waste of my time, to explain the power, office and duties of apostleship. But, come to think of it, you could always ask Douglas Becker to explain, as he is a malevolent critic of Mr. Armstrong, especially now that he is dead; and the "he" refers to Douglas!

belch-azzar said...

Neo said
"Do I believe that most people will choose Hell? Yes."

But about if I'm diligently following THE TWO BEARDED GURUS (Joe Tkach & Ben Benannke) ?

Anonymous said...

Tom Mahon,

The problem is that the splinter from COG-7 that Herbert Armstrong rebelliously formed never had God behind it in the first place. Why didn't HWA wait for God to straighten everything out, as WCG members were exhorted to do?

Armstrong framed his rebellion in such a manner that we were expected to believe that it was necessary, and supported by God. He self condemned, though, by continuing to state that COG-7 was the true Church of God, only a different era.

With his bogus church eras doctrine, he also left those who would feel 'God's calling' to rebelliously start splinters from WCG nowhere to go. Who, in their right mind, would start the Laodecean era? That's why you have all of the little tinhorns running around claiming to be preservationists of the Philadelphia era, and acting as if they idolize HWA. Dumb and dumber. You seem modestly intelligent. I wonder why you cannot see this?

purplehymnal said...

Actually that clears things up substantially, Neo. I wasn't sure if you were the same Neotherm or not, and I wasn't sure what you had meant, in regards to your earlier comments about being an evangelical Quaker, and your views on non-theism among members of the RSoF.

I was confused by your use of the term "universalist" -- I thought you were saying you had universalist Quaker leanings, which obviously you don't, if you "pitch your tent" between Conservative and Evangelical Quakerism.

Thanks for clarifying!

Tired Skeptic said...

You seem modestly intelligent. I wonder why you cannot see this?

For those who believe Scripture, the answer is in Isaiah 8:20.

For those who do not, the answer is to be found in The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Disorders by the American Psychiatric Association.

The same is true of all Armstrongists who cannot see that Herbert Armstrong was a false prophet.

The real question is what is the bottom line? What do the Armstrongists get from their fantasies?

As for the intelligence, it's rather overstated for someone so careless they can't quote Scripture accurately nor make statements anywhere accurately concerning such things as conspiracy theories about the moderator. There are such things as brilliant fools, but that doesn't seem to be the case here, just a mediocre incompetent.

For the religious, repentance is a gift from God as is correction, neither of which seems to have been offered to Tom Moran yet, or if they were, they were resoundingly rejected. All there is is the fuming anger and hatred for those who disagree with the silly ideas which are so obviously wrong.

This is the world of Armstrongism, starting in the 1930s as Herbert Armstrong in all his narcissism wanted revenge and took such satisfaction in those he declared "had to eat their words". No such luck for our resident Armstrongist.

Baashabob said...

Tired Skeptic's remarks about pushing the hot buttons of our resident man worshipper are so true. And Tom continues to make a fool of himself time after time, except when he sees himself condemned by the very scriptures he so often quotes. In those cases, as Douglas has pointed out, he becomes strangely silent.

One example of this is that he can't help but to call the object of his worship "Mr.", even though the scriptures, which he claims to believe, forbid such a practice.

Bob E.

-=-=-
... "The hilarious thing about self-important self-righteous people is that they are so easily baited."
* TagZilla 0.066 * http://tagzilla.mozdev.org

Tired Skeptic said...

Bob,

Near as I can tell, the goal of such people is to be royalty.

Herbert Armstrong wanted to be royalty. Unfortunately for us, he achieved his goal by using the resources we provided him. He was the ultimate royalty to be God as God is God is what he wanted to be, not unlike Satan the Devil.

No humble servant stuff for the royals.

Tom Mahon said...

Baashabob said...

>>>Tired Skeptic's remarks about pushing the hot buttons of our resident man worshipper are so true. And Tom continues to make a fool of himself time after time,<<<

I respect your judgement, and from now on I will stop making a fool of myself by joining you loving, caring people, in calling Mr. Armstrong "Herbie, Herster, Harmstrong and whatsoever else you think is appropriate.

I hope that after a week of induction in how to slander, malign and revile Mr. Armstrong, I will then be accepted as wise by you all.

purplehymnal said...

I can't speak for anyone else, but when I used those terms of disaffection, it was with a just little bit of well-placed vindictive glee.

As my need for the release of the negative emotions (incurred from being born and raised in the original WCG) tapered off, I felt the need to use the pejoratives less and less (although I might still slip one in here and there).

However. Not even if I was given possession of the thirty million dollar chandelier myself, would I ever again refer to HWA as "Mr."!!!