Thursday 4 January 2007

Creation and Revelation

Polls always intrigue me. They provide a quick feel for how a group of people - in this case the readers of AW (and by extension at least part of the COG and ex-COG community) - think about issues. The last two focussed on the first and last books of the Bible. With a minimum number of 100 participants, a large sample by most blog standards, it's likely the results are fairly representative.

It surprised me - though it probably shouldn't have - that gap-theory creationism came out ahead of the other options. It surprised me again when so many people elected to drop the eschatology that defines our Adventist past and agree that the prophecies of Revelation are largely metaphor. Those two results don't seem to sit easily together, but there you have it.

One thought keeps running through my head in light of the second poll. The major splinter groups continue to emphasise "prophecy" and the End Times, and yet many within seem to be thoroughly "burned over" on this kind of thing. Maybe it's time for groups like UCG to quit beating the drum and work toward a more balanced position - where they might find a sizable number of the brethren patiently waiting for them to catch up.

Beginnings poll

End Times poll

Update: Sabbath poll results


Douglas Becker said...

You are right: UCG would be better without prophecy, except, perhaps, the prophecy of the return of Jesus, the "better" resurrection, the Second resuurection and afterward the Great White Throne Judgment.

As the Church Corporate which values process over people, however, such a move will take place only over decades at a glacial pace. Oceans will empty and the desert will bloom as a rose by then -- no wait, that's a prophecy! Anyway, giving up the Two Tribes / British Israelism would be a step in the right direction.

And just think.

Make it appealing enough, and as Howard Davis observes, there's 500 million English Speaking people from India prospering because of outsourcing to be a fantastic marketing opportunity for United, if only the UCG can find a way to tap into the great multitude and ignore the commission to the house of Israel.

Anonymous said...


It might be that many are looking at the New Testament and Revelation in particular with critical eyes and open minds while at the same time, questioning not only the six day creation as well as seeing the many failings of the theory of evolution. When minds are open people will dig to learn and that is never a bad thing.

For those that want to look into it is quite an interesting site.

Anonymous said...

I had the chance to visit a congregation of the COGAIC(Hulme). The members were surprisingly welcoming but not smothering.

I was surprised by what I heard in the sermonette and sermons. The messages were strong, practical, and helpful on a spiritual level. I asked a few of local members if this was a unique occurrence. They said that the Church is attempting to be balanced in their approach. I asked about prophecy and it seemed that from the answers I received that the organization focuses what the Bible states - and less emphasis on pet ideas.

My experience was a refreshing turn from visits with LCG and UCG. I may even go back again.

Anonymous said...

I did not participate in the "end times poll" as it did not contain the obvious answer. Jesus said He did not know when. Why do we think we do?

As for the substance of this post I doubt that those who think of the Bible as Myth will be attended the UCG anytime soon. There are so many non/former COG people who are here that how they answer a poll will not be even slightly representative of the COG.

Positive Dennis

Anonymous said...

I've been amazed at some of the poll results here too. Sometimes it looks like the majority of readers here are closet Armstrongologists. They are still into Saturday "Sabbath" keeping (according to the latest poll) and still seem to be hanging onto Armstrong's "Intelligent design, sí, evolution, no!" schtick.

It's disappointing to me to see that so many of these people have learned nothing at all from their time in the cult. Or perhaps they are still part of some ACOG out there. Perhaps they simply cannot break their addiction to religion, a religion that tells them they have hit the spiritual lottery of sorts and are more special to God than any other people.

Anonymous said...

Prophecy. Phooey! All that was written was supposed to have been fulfilled 1,900+ years ago (Luke 21:22) which was to their generation, "shortly" (Rev.1:1).

Did it shortly come to pass or didn't it? Was it fulfilled in their generation (Matt. 24:34) or wasn't it?

If it was, Preterism is the answer. If it wasn't, false prophecy is the answer.