CHURCH OF GOD
The Worldwide Church of God (formerly the Radio Church of God) meets throughout the USA and in several foreign countries behind unlabeled doors in rented halls every Saturday.
Few cults are flourishing more than Armstrongism. 1,610,000 copies of "Plain Truth" magazine in 1969, in addition to the newer "Tomorrow's World" magazine. "The World Tomorrow" is regularly heard on more than 300 stations, and its television log is rapidly growing ...reaching all of the USA plus Canada, Asia, Europe, and Latin America. On these programs, never a prayer is offered and never a hymn is sung. The true and basic tenets of the sect are concealed while popular and excellent teaching on morals, pollution, drug abuse, etc. are abundantly expounded. People who write in to the Pasadena address are contacted by Armstrongite ministers (not listed in phone books as such) and many are becoming affiliated with the Worldwide Church of God - other thousands who would never dream of leaving their own church read the printed material and send in money.
The origin and basic beliefs of Armstrongism are revealed in Hebert W. Armstrong's book, The United States and British Commonwealth in Prophecy. Here, the "key" to the understanding of the Bible is said to be the identification of the United States and Great Britain in prophecy....a doctrine first taught by Richard Brothers (1757-1854) in England, and later clearly stated by John Wilson in Our Israelitist Origin written in 1840. The movement started when Mrs. Herbert W. Armstrong claimed that an angel revealed God's will to her. She stared her revelation with her husband who became the prophet of the movement . Herbert W. Armstrong began to preach Anglo-Israelism in 1934 in Eugene, Oregon, but did not publish his basic text (The United States and British Commonwealth in Prophecy) until 1967.
NOTE: The author gratefully acknowledges valuable assistance from Roger R. Chambers, who spent two years of intensive research on the subject while studying for his Master's Degree at Cincinnati Bible College.
1. Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong received revelations from an angel of the way of God.
Chambers, Plain Truth About Armstrongism, p. 9.
2. Herbert W. Armstrong affirms his ministry is from heaven, and that the gospel was not preached "for eighteen and one half centuries." (Plain Truth About Armstrongism, 15).
H. W. Armstrong, The Inside Story of the World Tomorrow Broadcast, p. 7-11.
"By God's direction and authority, I have laid the truth before you."
H. W. Armstrong , The United States and British Commonwealth in Prophecy, p. 212.
All the rest of the world in "total ignorance."
Ibid., p. 6. (Plain Truth About Armstrongism, 16).
3. . "Lost Israel" is to be identified as the Anglo Saxon peoples, the key to understanding the Bible.
Plain Truth About Armstrongism, 18.
[Garner Ted Armstrong and his father both disavow any connection with or knowledge of British Israelism, but the book The United States and British Commonwealth in Prophecy has the doctrine in it throughout, though not labeled "British-Israelism" or "Anglo-Israelism."
4. The old British-Israel theory has the deathbed promises of Jacob favoring the younger son, Ephraim, instead of Manasseh, who was to become a lesser nation. When Britian flourished, it was fashionable to apply Ephraim to that great nation and to assert the throne of David is the throne in England where God's people would be ruled over until Christ's return when he will take over and reign in victory.
However, when Armstrong saw the nation of England on the wane as compared with the United States (Manasseh), he reversed the interpretation so as to give the favored blessing to the United States!
Plain Truth About Armstrongism, pp. 21-24.
5. The theory of the "Lost Ten Tribes" calls for (1) all inhabitants of the northern kingdom of Hoshea to be deported by Shalmaneser and Sargon, 722-718 B.C.;
(2) The House of Israel has never returned but has remained intact somewhere as a people - a total population in anonymous pilgrimage.
Plain Truth About Armstrongism, 25-26.
Armstrong claims this ancient mystery is now "cleared up" by him.
Plain Truth About Armstrongism, 34-35.
[Over two dozen lost tribes hunters have made such assertions, including the Mormons who say it is the Lamanites - ancestors of American Indians. ]
The house of Israel (nor thern tribes ) was lost then found removed to the British Isles.
6. The hope of Israel is national, racial, geographic.
Armstrong, The United States and British Commonwealth in Prophecy.
7. "Jesus Christ will not sit upon the throne of David until His second coming, yet future."
The united States and British Commonwealth in Prophecy, p. 69.
8. Prophecies of Old Testament for the 2oth Century primarily.
The United States and British Commonwealth in Prophecy, p. 132.
9. The Sabbath and the Law still binding ...the Ten Commandments the way to salvation.
The United States and British Commonwealth in prophecy, p. 161.
WRONG TIME: 1931 A. D.
WRONG PLACE: Eugene , Oregon
WRONG FOUNDER: Herbert W. Armstrong
1. Galatians 1:8-9: no man or angel to speak differently from New Testament without being anathema.
1. Jesus' gospel and His words shall never pass away. The Bible has never been destroyed by men in any age or time.
2. The word of God, once given. Jude 3; John 17:17.
Armstrong revealed what God concealed! Christians have concealed that which God did reveal (the gospel).
1. Term "lost tribes of Israel" not in Bible.
[If Armstrong admitted his "Key" doctrine was preached by British -Israelites before he did, then obviously he received no revelation from heaven but merely read books on the subject and re-vamp their doctrines. Read Armstrong's book The United States and British Commonwealth in Prophecy, then read one of the standard British-Israel texts such as J. H. Allen's Judah's Sceptre and Joseph's Birthright first written in 1902. Except for the Sabbath doctrine and Armstrong's modern predictions, you will be reading the same doctrine.] Plain Truth About Armstrongism, p. 19-22.
1. Genesis 48 makes no mention of what nations specifically would arise in fulfillment of Jacob's promises and blessings.
.1. Many deportations to many lands of Hebrews people resulted from various wars. Numbers 31:35; Amos 1:9; 1 Kings 20:34; Jeremiah 52:28-30.
Plain Truth About Armstrongism, 37-39.
2. Proselyting also disseminated Israelite culture. Isaiah 14:1; 66:21; Matthew 23:15, Pharisees compassed land and sea; Easter 8:17, "many people became Jews," Ruth and Rahab; Isaiah 56:3, Judaized "strangers."
3. Women have been abused in wars and by armies and the children of such victims among Hebrew women were raised Jewish, though racially they were a mixed race. Deuteronomy 28:30; Exodus 15:9; Judges 5:30; Isaiah 13:16. The Jews of Germany are the descendants of beautiful Jewish women of Austria, who were taken prisoners and raped by the Vangioni; these women raised their children in the Jewish religion. (H. Graetz, History of the Jews, III, p. 40f).
Plain Truth About Armstrongism, 44-45
4. Deportations were not total populations, but only a few of the elite, the governors, the wealthy, the political leaders, etc. Jeremiah 52: 27-30; 2 Kings 24:14-16. The masses of common people were never removed after any war.
Plain Truth About Armstrongism, 55-57.
Name "Jew" is used 174 times in the New Testament, but name "Israel" is used 75 times. Jesus identified the house of Israel with the Jews in Palestine of his day. Matthew 10:5-6, go to the lost sheep of house of Israel. (inhabitants of Judea). See Jeremiah 50:17; Matthew 15:24-26.
1. Acts 26: 6-7 : The hope of Israel involves the claim of Christ and spiritual values and benefits. Acts 28:20; John 18:36.
2. The land promise was fulfilled. Exodus 23:30-31; Deuteronomy 1:8; Joshua 21:19 43, 45; Nehemiah 9:7-8.
3. Acts 1:6: "Dost thou at this time restore the kingdom to Israel? "
[if 'literal," then Israelite race must be available for political reconstitution; if spiritual, then existence of 'lost tribes' is of no consequence.]
4. Ephesians 2:12 -15: distinction of Jew and Gentile is lost in Christ. Galatians 3:28.
1. The Kingdom of God promised to both Israel and Judah is the church, and Christ as head is now reigning over it upon the throne of David . Acts 2:29-33; Acts 15:14-17; Amos 9:11-12; Romans 10:11-13; Acts 13: 30-34. Jesus now reigns. Revelation 2:25-27; 1 Corinthians 15:24-28.
1. Acts 3:24.
2. Acts 26:22-23.
3. Daniel 7:13-14. Jesus went to God in heaven to receive His Kingdom. Acts 1:9.
4. Luke 24:44-48. The main body of prophecy focused upon Jesus' death, burial, resurrection and the preaching of the gospel. Isaiah 2:2-4.
1. See passages under study on Seventh Day Adventism. 2 Corinthians 3:4-14; Colossians 2:13-17.