Editor’s Note: This was sent to me recently and I found it very interesting. I cannot confirm the observations made but as a “Food for Thought” article I thought we should be at least aware of the possibilities it puts forth. So read it with a “grain of salt” but at the same time watch for indications that it might contain more truth than not!
Dear Brother, June 3, 2016
I attach the latest news on the various entities that remain significant players in our ex-WCG heritage. There seems to be a pattern developing, which may be a gentrification of our member base, those with a history beginning 20 and more years ago. Those few who “came in” since then aren’t sufficiently savvy to know what the real issues are. I won’t say this writer from whom I copied this knows the full picture either, but his reporting may be sufficiently accurate to give us an overview of the current “scene”.
We need to consider what is the common denominator in these remnant groups. I find in all of them one constant: they all carry on with the same hierarchal political structure that HWA was led to embrace, incorrectly, in the late 1960’s, that of a chain-of-command structure rather than the simple up-and-down “servant structure” found in the New Testament. Any c-o-c structure, if there was one, would follow the pattern of servant and servant-overseer, WITH the membership also acting in a servant-overseer capacity watching the affairs that affect the body as a whole and to monitor the conduct of their “servants” (deacons) as they serve and direct the course of collective action. The members are also mandated to be the “pillars and grounds” upholding the integrity of the doctrines the body is to represent. Think how things would be different if that was ever allowed in the CoG of recent generation. But, sadly, it wasn’t, and even more sadly, the membership would still find such an approach as unacceptable, based on decades of indoctrination otherwise.
The one group that operates somewhat differently is the UCG, but is still preserves a limiting degree of the old structure. Still, the members have no real say, though they do seek a consensus among their ministry at least.
With all of this, could we be seeing a coalescing into the two major groups: UCG and CogWa? Members will have to decide which governmental approach (old style or evangelical – whatever that means to various people) meets their personal preferences. It may boil down to a matter of convenience, depending on where the nearest congregation is, rather than approach.
Next will have to be the content of their teachings. Will the membership at large continue to “study to show themselves approved” and steer the ministry toward right doctrines, or will we see a general dumbing down, as has been the trend, with the members happy to be entertained, but not exhorted to properly fulfill their calling? In what situation can the membership dismiss a minister who doesn’t feed the flock properly or adequately? This is where we make ourselves vulnerable to being lulled, perhaps fatally, if Luke 14:34-35 applies to anything.
RCG News: The RCG has lost a large number of its brethren and is in terrible financial shape as Dave Pack makes ever more extreme claims about himself and issues repeatedly failed prophecies about vast numbers of brethren joining his organization. Dave is now desperately trying to fend off financial collapse. He is no longer paying the bulk of his ministry and most of his supporters have left him. Dave has obtained a large mortgage on his physical facilities in the vain hope that his prophecies about many coming to him will still somehow be fulfilled.
RCG cannot last much longer and will either collapse and come to nothing quickly or last the very few years left until the tribulation begins.
PCG News: PCG has a new radio show to try and get more people interested in PCG. It is entitled Trumpet Radio Live and is hosted by Dwight Falk and Abraham Blondeau.
PCG has also hemorrhaged many of its brethren and over the past year has seen its income plummet by 25%, yet is spending recklessly in an attempt to present a prosperous image. Gerald Flurry is no longer able to run PCG and may become fully senile or die at any time, at the same time the core teaching of PCG and the Flurry claim to being an exalted prophet [which is based on the false teaching that Iran is the king of the South], is about to come crashing down with the soon coming regime change in Iran. When the Iranian regime change is an accomplished fact and Gerald is out of the picture how many more PCG folks will leave?
PCG is headed for financial disaster as more and more brethren leave that organization and overspending is rife.
UCG News: On April 29, 2016, CJ Williams was ordained into the ministry. He and his wife, Tina, serve in the Seattle, Washington, congregation.
UCG has rewritten [made “clarifications” of] the explanations of their Fundamental Beliefs, and these “clarifications” will be the subject of CoE review over the coming year or two. At this time about 80% of their ministry are either on board in agreement or will accept anything they are told to keep their jobs and pensions.
It is not clear what the objectors in the ministry will do when the changes are initiated. As for the brethren, when these things come out the natural choice for some would be in the direction of friends and family in COGWA.
COGWA – LCG News: LCG is in such terrible financial shape that they are considering changing policies and doctrines to effect an association with COGWA. LCG is split between those evangelical types desiring to take a route similar to UCG; and Armstrong loyalists leaning towards COGWA.
It is obvious that the LCG HWA loyalists see association with COGWA as their future and the evangelicals do not, which seems to portend a split at some point. The fight now is over control of the remaining LCG assets including taking as many brethren as possible with each group.
It appears that COGWA will ultimately be the big winner in the overall COG shuffling.
However a movement towards godliness and a genuine zeal to live by every Word of God is also building, and much will unfold in COG and world events in the next year or two.
Once the false prophet is empowered to perform miracles, God will send his literal human two servants and they will call people to a sincere repentance and a genuine passionate zeal to live by every Word of God; which COGWA and the other groups reject.
Comment: I’m not completely convinced that the Two Witnesses will actively work to effect repentance among existing brethren. Their ministry will be more to witness to the general world population. I don’t find where new people will be “called” under their inspired assignment. We could HOPE for that effect, and it may have that motivating effect among those already called by God, but the situation with the general world population will be with such overt hatred that new people will be reluctant to identify themselves with them and what they’re saying. Based on Revelation 9:20-21, I am more inclined to see the calling period closed once those determined to be “sealed” are all drawn-in. if people aren’t “granted” repentance, (Romans 2:4) then they have little motivation or ability to do so in reality. We should recognize, from the Ten Virgins parable, that there will be a clear cut-off date for response in order to be included among the Bride contingent. The rest will have to await the second harvest, if they have any real desire to become enjoined (later) into the Family of God.
We should continue to pray for those who will be greatly distressed by the collapse of those entities/personalities who they put their wholehearted faith in and who they supported financially all these years since 1995, and in some cases before that. The inclination to give up will be strong. They’ll need rational and caring brethren as never before to get thru all of this.