I had one of those "eureka!" moments this morning reading a comment on a very long thread that has the theists and atheists playing tag wrestling. I'm not sure I had thought of it quite this way before.
Armstrongism, in a sense, seems to me to be a step toward atheism. It did a very thorough job of debunking and discrediting the mainstream religions. Anyone who sincerely joined WCG, as I did, first became convince[d] that the mainstream churches did not have god's truth. To us, only WCG had god's truth.
Then, along came Joe Tkach, who brought the shortcomings of WCG to our attention. In this sense, Tkach did us a big favor. He broke the hold the cult had over us. But, for many of us, once the spell was broken, the genie could not be put back into the bottle. We had already proven the mainstream churches were false. Now we saw WCG was also false. What then was true?
Maybe that explains a lot.