(Note: This is not to be confused with the current Lamentations booklet PCG publishes, Lamentations: The Point of No Return, which was released in 2008 and appears to have replaced this booklet.)
Gerald Flurry insists that Satan was cast out of Heaven and upon the Earth upon HWA's death and this is what has given Tkach Sr. the power to implement the changes within WCG. This is a doctrine peculiar to PCG in the world of Armstrongism.
All of these other dire prophecies in Matthew 24 also began to intensify when Mr. Armstrong died. And the pace is accelerating! (p. 2.)Wait. I thought this booklet is about Lamentations. Why is Flurry bringing up Matthew 24 and II Thessalonians 2?
Is God doing it by casting down Satan? Perhaps Satan was cast down to do a very specific job. God sent a lying spirit to persuade evil king Ahab on a matter (I Kings 22:20-23). (p. 3.)
In II Thessalonians 2 we see that Satan is using all of his power. As a result God’s own people are perishing spiritually. It also appears that Satan was cast down when Mr. Armstrong died. Prophecy says Satan was to be cast down and never have access to God’s throne again. (p. 4.)
In condemning Tkach for making the changes in WCG Flurry states that Russians are uncommonly devious and deceitful.
The last warning to the Philadelphians is to let “NO MAN take your crown” (Rev. 3:11). If God would send “strong delusion” through Satan—the best tool to do the job—God would also choose the best man to do the job. Mr. Tkach and his son are Russians. Both of them have the potential to represent “strong delusion” to God’s people. ...
God uses the best tool to do a job. He uses the Germans to correct Israel (Isa. 10:4-6), because the Germans will do it better then any other nation. (pp. 3-4.)To support this bigoted assertion about Russians he quotes an article from the October 1964 issue of The Plain Truth. Flurry refuses to mention who wrote the article because he wants all of the attention of the reader devoted to PCG. For the record Flurry is quoting from an article written by one Eugene Walter. (October 1964, p. 14, PDF p. 16.)
I seem to recall that Tkach was descended from another Slavic people, not Russians. If this is the case then, not only is Flurry apparently bigoted towards Russians, but he may also be wrong to claim that Tkach is of Russian descent.
It needs to be stated here that this booklet is already assuming that British Israelism and church eras are true. This booklet also assumes that God actually worked through HWA. Is that likely considering what his own niece and his own grandson have recently stated about his personal conduct?
God prophesied that a time would come when He would no longer hold events back. He removed Mr. Armstrong to let the “synagogue of Satan” quickly blossom into the Laodicean Church. This all happens in the context of a “little book,” or Malachi’s Message (Rev. 10:2). “And sware by him that liveth for ever and ever, who created heaven, and the things that therein are, and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the sea, and the things which are therein, that there should be time no longer” (Rev. 10:6). The expression “time no longer” should read “no more delay.” That expression tells us that God held back events until the Gospel was preached to the world by Mr. Armstrong. Then God probably cast down Satan to let events race to the return of Christ.Is Flurry blaming God for not letting the Great Tribulation start in 1972 as Herbert W. Armstrong taught?
CHANGE IN THE WCG AND THE WORLD IS RUNNING RAMPANT! THE WCG AND THE WORLD WILL NEVER BE THE SAME AGAIN! Evil in God’s Laodicean Church and the world has shifted into the fast lane. (p. 5.)
It was no later than 1992 that Gerald Flurry began to teach that Malachi's Message is the Little Book of Revelation 10. This contradicts HWA's teaching that the Little Book referred to him (HWA) visiting many world leaders. Also before 1992 Flurry taught that the Little Book was the Bible but then decided to proclaim it was a booklet he wrote.
Certainly the Laodiceans will never “prophesy again.” They abhor prophecy. “Prophesy again” tells us our work is mainly about prophecy. And it all revolves around a little book. And remember, it’s all in the context of “no more delay.” It’s a speedy work in a violent time! (p. 6.)But what about all the other Laodiceans who left WCG but did not join PCG? They certainly do not "abhor prophecy."
There is very little time left. We are getting close to the time of the two witnesses (v. 3). (p. 6.)Flurry wrote this twenty one years ago.
I believe this verse means that when Mr. Armstrong dies, WE ARE IN FOR DREADFUL TIMES UNTIL CHRIST RETURNS! We are about to enter into the dreadful Tribulation and the frightening day of the Lord. (pp. 6-7.)What actually happened? Flurry later embarked in a long legal struggle which he lost but he was able to buy the copyrights to eighteen of HWA's works for $3 million. He later spent $24 million to build Armstrong Auditorium. Some dreadful times these have been for Flurry.
Flurry does not talk about Lamentations until page 7. Time to see what he has to say.
Then Flurry discusses how Lamentations was written by Jeremiah and claims that King Josiah was a type of HWA and his death, like HWA's, signed the beginning of the end. The end of Judah's independence in King Josiah's time and the end of Philadelphian WCG in HWA's time.
Flurry speculates that "God’s physical house in Pasadena, California" will "be destroyed" on the anniversary of the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem by the Babylonians.
Ezra read the book of Lamentations on the 9th and 10th days of the 5th month. That was the anniversary of the destruction of the physical temple. Will God’s physical house in Pasadena, California, be destroyed on that date? It could very well happen. (p. 12.)
When Lamentations was published in Judah, they had reached the point of no return. Israel has just about reached that point now. It will soon be too late to repent, if it’s not already. The ONLY HOPE for Israel is our message. May God help them to heed before it’s too late. (p. 12.)And it is this sort of emotive rhetoric that inspire such fierce fanaticism among so many PCG members.
Verse 5 also shows that even the young children of the people of the WCG will be taken into captivity and experience the horrors of the holocaust because of events taking place within “Zion.” It is all very tragic. Church members will have to watch their own little children suffer. (p. 16.)Words like this cause many PCG members to be greatly fearful of leaving PCG. In fact this is an induced phobia designed to make PCG members remain loyal to PCG regardless of whatever grievances and wrongs may be inflicted upon them.
So we see that PCG members are told, If you do not pay three tithes and extra offerings to PCG you will see your own children suffer.
It is now twenty one years since Flurry wrote these words. The children he speaks of have long since grown up.
Here is Flurry once again trying to induce phobic beliefs among his followers.
Verse 11 shows that things become so bad that the people die of starvation. The people are willing to give up their “pleasant things,” meaning their silver and gold, for bread in order to stay alive. The expression “to relieve the soul” means to bring back to life. The people become diseased and sick because they lack food. They realize they have become vile.It looks like Flurry is really mad at Tkach.
The entire world was shocked by the photographs that came out of the Nazi concentration camps. YET THE SCENES FROM LAMENTATIONS ARE FAR WORSE! Verse 12 states there is no “SORROW LIKE UNTO MY SORROW”! Why do the Laodiceans suffer pain as no other group? Because they knew God’s truth and prophecies. They should have escaped the Great Tribulation. But they rebelled against God. As Matthew 24:21 states, there was not a time, nor will there be again, a time like this. Can any human mind imagine anything worse than the Nazi concentration camps? Yet, God says through Jeremiah that things will get far worse! And, God is doing it! Germany and a united Europe become a club in God’s hand. It is the day of HIS FIERCE ANGER (Isa. 10:5-6). (pp. 17-8.)
“Zion” [here Flurry means the Laodiceans, or more specifically the Tkachite WCG] begins to realize during her affliction, that God is punishing her for her sins. ... They tell God that they know they have rebelled against His commandments. They recognize that they rejected God’s end-time “Elijah.” They begin to realize that Malachi’s Message WAS a warning sent from God (p. 18.)So if you want to escape the Great Tribulation you must believe that Malachi's Message was sent by God, according to Flurry who stands to gain three tithes and extra offerings should one decide that Malachi's
Message was sent by God.
In this chapter Flurry gets more specific in criticizing various acts committed in the course of implementing the Tkach changes.
He also continues to make fear inducing statements in order to persuade WCG members to join his PCG.
God will not deliver His people from severe punishment. This all seems unthinkable to many of God’s people today. Many ministers have ridiculed the PCG for making such strong statements. THESE ARE BIBLICAL STATEMENTS! Some full-time ministers have stated that God would never send “strong delusion” to His Church. Others have said that God would never punish older “innocent” people and children. Could God allow His people to “believe a lie” by sending them “strong delusion”? Will God severely punish the elderly and children? THE BOOK OF LAMENTATIONS VERY CLEARLY SAYS HE WILL! Why? Because there is something very wrong in Zion and it must be corrected! (p. 20.)Flurry expands on this discussion in Malachi's Message.
And that includes the Global Church of God. That group has left the Worldwide Church of God. But they have rejected Mr. Armstrong as God’s end-time “Elijah” as well as the GOVERNMENT God established through Mr. Armstrong. Other doctrines God established through Mr. Armstrong have also been rejected by the Global Church of God—as they falsely profess to follow what Mr. Armstrong taught! They are also Laodiceans. (p. 21.)Later in 1999, GCG went through a schism that saw Meredith leave with about 80% of the members to set up another COG splinter group (Living Church of God) more firmly under his control. As part of establishing LCG Meredith established one man rule as the way LCG would operate.
GCG chose to avoid one man rule. They were not rebelling against God. Rather this was a perfectly rational response to the way Tkach implemented the changes. Tkach used the absolute power HWA had created for himself in order to change WCG's doctrines and it proved impossible to stop their actions. GCG wished to avoid anything like that from ever happening again. However Meredith did not like not being in control so he left GCG and created an organization that he could operate without restraint by others. In other words Meredith restored HWA's one man rule within LCG.
But despite this Flurry continued to denounce Meredith and his followers as Laodiceans. It should be clear that Flurry did this in order to claim that only PCG members are true Christians hoping to get more tithes and offerings.
Here Flurry also criticizes a Good News article from 1990 for supporting the Tkach changes and trying to prevent WCG members from joining PCG and paying them three tithes.
Flurry insists that God will treat the Laodiceans like an enemy (therefore insisting you join his PCG). Sometimes Flurry can be quite graphic about the supposed fate of WCG members for staying in WCG after the Tkach changes and not paying tithes to his PCG.
As human beings, we do not like to focus on dreadful events. We need to face the reality of what is coming. WHAT JEREMIAH ENVISIONED AND PERHAPS WITNESSED MADE HIM PHYSICALLY SICK! HIS EYES BECAME BLINDED BY HIS MANY TEARS. His grief and crying were so bad, HIS EYES BECAME SWELLED SHUT! Jeremiah’s bowels wrenched in pain and HE HAD TO VOMIT BECAUSE OF THE HORROR! The Church, “the beauty of Israel,” was destroyed. The young children and infants of the Church died of starvation. It is not a pretty sight. What has happened to many African nations will happen to God’s own people. CAN YOU SEE GOD’S ONCE VIBRANT PEOPLE CRAZED WITH STARVATION?! Church members’ children about to die ask their mothers, “WHERE IS THE CORN AND WINE?” (Lam. 2:12). The infants look at their mothers, LONGING FOR FOOD, AS THEY DIE UPON THEIR BREASTS. WHO WOULDN’T BECOME SICK AT SUCH IMAGES? Jeremiah had to ask himself why the parents allowed this to happen to their children. Church parents will have to realize that they brought this on their children. Many, if not all children will probably miss the millennium and will have to come back to life in the second resurrection. No wonder Jeremiah became so stressed by these events. It should not have ended that way. (p. 25.)Flurry wants your tithes really badly. That is why he tries to intimidate you with these words.
The Laodicean ministry ridiculed God’s truth about a place of safety. They failed to teach the people about a future captivity and holocaust. (p. 26.)While this seems to be true of Tkach's WCG, many other COG groups passionately believe HWA's teachings "about a future captivity and holocaust." I know this because one of these Laodicean groups taught me this and I totally believed what they told me. And yet Flurry would just demonize them as Laodiceans and try to pin his criticisms of Tkach upon them. How self serving of him.
Flurry then fear mongers that women in Tkach's WCG will be driven to eat their own children in the Great Tribulation for failing to pay tithes to Flurry.
"...SHALL THE WOMEN EAT THEIR FRUIT...?..." ... Verse 20 [of Lamentations 2] shows that He will even allow some members to come to the point where they may be tempted to eat their own children because of their severe starvation. How horrible! But it is necessary to wake people up! (p. 27.)You must pay me tithes or else, Flurry is essentially saying here.
God is going to punish His nations and Church SO SEVERELY THAT THEY WILL APPEAR AS IF A BEAR OR LION MAULED THEM! What a horrible sight! Can you imagine the horror? A severed hand here, a severed leg there! This is God’s doing. Like a skilled archer, God is waiting to destroy His people with many arrows. (p. 30.)Flurry seems to get really mad at WCG members who will not pay him tithes and offerings.
The leaders in God’s Church who were very quick to speak—to publicly preach wrong doctrine—will be silent in the Tribulation. Finally, they will have learned the lesson that it is better to just put their mouths “in the dust.” But it will take great pain to bring them to this point. God’s people will be willing to give their lives over to their captors—“giveth his cheek to him that smiteth”—because they realize the depth of their sin. They recognize that even though they must die—they will make it to the first resurrection and will be born into the Family of God. In all the tragedy God’s people still find great hope. (pp. 30-1.)
But verse 2 shows that there are two groups of God’s ministers doing a “work” at the same time. There is another group of ministers referred to as “THE PRECIOUS SONS OF ZION.” These are referred to as “FINE GOLD,” a term similar to that of the “JEWELS” found in Malachi 3:17. GOD ESTEEMS THIS GROUP VERY HIGHLY, FOR THEY ARE RARE. (p. 31.)Flurry is talking about his own COG splinter group, naturally.
God does have precious stones in His house. Many have criticized the PCG membership for referring to themselves as “jewels” when that is exactly what God says about people willing to stand up for the truth at this end of the end time. ... The ministry [in WCG] should set the example for all the brethren. Today this is not the case. (p. 32.)Actually many people have complained about the conduct of PCG ministers. Many of them do not seem to be setting a good example for PCG members.
Jeremiah shows that the Laodicean ministers are cruel like frightened ostriches. ... The Laodicean ministers are not taking care of their members as they should. They are passively allowing God’s people to be fed false doctrine. ... Many of the PCG members were also dealt with very harshly for questioning the many changes. (p. 33.)So Flurry complains that those WCG who joined PCG were treated harshly by WCG ministers. Actually many people have also complained that PCG ministers treat them harshly as well. It seems many PCG ministers are doing exactly what Flurry condemned WCG ministers for doing.
Flurry really wants those tithes.
Even though the United States, the British peoples, and modern day Israel have enjoyed the greatest wealth; our people will soon be embracing “dung hills.” They will pick through garbage to survive! Verse 10 shows that things get so bad, SOME TENDER-HEARTED WOMEN WILL PREPARE (sodden) THEIR OWN CHILDREN AS FOOD! (pp. 33-4.)
The final separation of the Philadelphian and Laodicean ministry and members was begun on December 7, 1989. That is when the Philadelphia Church of God began as a separate entity from the Worldwide Church of God. Why was it begun? Because the Laodicean leaders did not regard what the Philadelphian ministry had to say about all the changes taking place within the Church. ... God will use the PCG to continue to give the WCG fair warning right up to the Tribulation. If the WCG ministers and members do not repent, they will have to drink from a very bitter cup. God has done the dividing—not Gerald Flurry or any man! (p. 35.)One peculiarity of Flurryism is his constant insistence that PCG began the instant he was fired from WCG. Of course he needed time to write up the paperwork and get the signatures to register PCG and establish it legally. But, for whatever reason, this is not good enough for Flurry. He insists that in some sort of mystical, spiritual sense PCG really began the instant he got fired.
(Also this statement, as well as this entire booklet and Malachi's Message, assumes that HWA was mostly right about church eras.)
Malachi's Message is very important to God, according to Flurry. It is so important that believing in it will automatically save you from the Great Tribulation.
Jesus Christ inspired the writing of Malachi’s Message to God’s Church Today! ... Anyone who reads Malachi’s Message and heeds its warnings will be spared from the events of the Great Tribulation. If YOU reject it now—you will have to accept it in the Tribulation or lose YOUR SALVATION! IT IS THAT SERIOUS! All of God’s people will have to recognize that Malachi’s Message came from God (Mal. 2:4). There is still time to repent before the Tribulation. (p. 35.)Odd. I thought we were supposed to believe in the Bible. Where did this Malachi's Message come from? What was its origin?
Let us be sure that we do our part to prevent this tragic fate from happening to ourselves, our families and our loved ones. Those of us who have come into the PCG will continue to warn the WCG and the world of the coming Tribulation. It is time for all of us to stand up for God’s precious truth! (p. 37.)But how can you do that if Philadelphia Church of God members are required to shun WCG members, having no contact with them?
He wants your money.
Also Flurry seems to be somewhat bigoted towards Russians.