Sunday, 27 April 2008

Much Ado About Nothing!

Predicting the end of the world on a specific date makes one an easy target for ridicule, as Ron Wieland has painfully discovered. But predicting the end of the world is not new, for since the beginning of the Christian era, over zealous, misguided people have been predicting the end of the world. Ron Wieland is just another addition to the clan, and there will be many more before the world actually ends. As a consequent of Ron's failed predictions, the regular posters at AW Blog, including its erudite host, who fancies himself as a budding scholar, have been fulminating against the deranged predictions of Ron Wieland, a former WCG minister.

However, the people who tend to be leading the pack in pouring scorn on false prophets are usually completely ignorant of the teachings of the bible. They tend to argue that because all previous predictions have failed to come to pass, there are no end time prophecies in the bible. One is tempted to call their conclusion a failure of logic, but that would be to credit them with a logically mind, instead of being afflicted with supernatural blindness.

Still, God's former servant, Herbert W. Armstrong, who outlined many end time prophecies, which are currently being fulfilled and can be seen by those whose eyes are opened, has also been derided by the cabal of scoffers at Ambassador Watch Blog. Yet Mr. Armstrong's explanation of the end time prophecy of the breaking of the pride the US's and Britain's power is currently being fulfilled in Iraq and Afghanistan. For the past five years a ragtag, ill equipped "army," without access to satellite technology, helicopter gunships, tanks, strike aircraft, stealth bombers or guided bombs, has remained undefeated by the world's greatest super power! If the fiasco in Iraq and Afghanistan is not the breaking of the pride of the US's and Britain's power, then, I don't know what is or will be the breaking of it!

But the bloggers at AW are too blind to focus on the reality of what is happening under their noses. They prefer to poke fun at Ron Wieland, which methinks is much ado about nothing!

Saturday, 19 April 2008

False compassion

Modern religious sentimentality has been heavily influenced by the resurgence of social and psychological theories, which were fashionable in the 1950s. Simply put, these theories state that we must focus on the good in in human nature, and that people's deviant behaviour derives from their social and psychological background. Therefore, the are not solely responsible for their misdemeanors.

As a consequence, punishment for criminal behaviour should either be suspended or be used in conjunction with methods of rehabilitation. So when dealing with criminal behaviour, the emphasis should be on forgiveness, compassion and mercy. At the same time helping the guilty to understand and come to terms with the social and psychological factors that caused them to be any thing from petty criminals to malevolent psychopaths. And, of course, in this process very little thought is given to the victims.

This mindset is very evident among the so-called churches of God, but is not to found in the pages of the bible. Most in the churches of God, continue to makes excuses for the behaviour of the hirelings who have sought to divide God's church, or fed themselves instead of the flock. The flock is supposed to understand the social and psychological factors that caused the hirelings to abandon them. The flock is expected to forgive, show compassion and extend mercy to those who lied to them and betrayed them for money!

At the same time, the pain and suffering of the flock is to be seen by them as God's way of testing their faith. Well, this mindset is pure religious sentimentality, and is a product of the "spirit of the world."

On the other hand, the mindset of the bible is that people are responsible for their actions, whether good or bad. And although God is love, he is also a God of justice: and he does not give any consideration to the social and psychological factors that influence those who break his laws. On the contrary, the history of Israel, which was written for our learning, is replete with examples of God's attitude towards those who ignored his warnings and repeatedly broke his laws.

So to emphasise God's mercy to the exclusion of his justice, is to lull people into a false sense of security. A careful study of the teachings of Paul will show that he was very careful to warn the ministry and the churches to "walk worthy of the vocation with which they were called." So those hirelings who betrayed God's people for filthy lucre, will suffer the wrath of God, whatever the social or psychological factors that influenced their treachery!