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Monday, June 26, 2023

You would do/say anything to avoid keeping God's Law

Anyone who dares to criticize Armstrongite theology is usually met with this accusation. In their worldview, most of the folks who profess to be Christians simply don't want to obey God. Of course, this is rooted in their belief that Christians are obligated to obey what they characterize as the eternal spiritual principles outlined in Torah. From their perspective, this also insulates them against the obvious criticism that they are cherry picking among the various dos and don'ts outlined therein. For the critics of their theology, however, it seems like the Armstrongite would do just about anything to justify their obsession with obeying the provisions of Torah which they cherish.

For the Armstrongite, those Catholics and Protestants are willfully disobedient to God. They don't want to keep the Sabbath. They don't want to keep God's Holy Days. They'd rather observe those pagan holidays. They'd rather have their ham and bacon than obey God's dietary laws. Likewise, the LGBTQ community simply doesn't want to obey Leviticus 18:22. They'd rather wallow in their perversity than obey God. For the Armstrongite, these folks are the latest rendition of what happened in the Garden of Eden. "They just want to decide for themselves what constitutes good and evil!"

They simply cannot fathom that those "so-called Christians" could be motivated by the same desire to obey God - to be within His will - which motivates them! They insist that their critics are trying to negate God's laws - to justify ignoring them. The notion that those folks might actually love God and want to be part of His Kingdom is completely foreign to them. And, although they insist that they too believe that their salvation is entirely dependent on Jesus Christ, they are not bashful about quickly following that up with an assertion that God will NOT accept anyone into His Kingdom who doesn't obey those "eternal spiritual principles" of Torah! "If they really loved God, they'd obey His commandments!"

For most Christians (including those of us who have successfully emerged from the delusion of Armstrongism), however, it is clear that God inaugurated a New Covenant through Jesus Christ - one with better terms and promises than were included in the OLD one. For us, Torah pointed to Jesus of Nazareth and was FULFILLED by him. For us, Jesus summarized Torah into two great principles: Love for God, and love for neighbor - eliminating the need to cherry pick among those dos and don'ts. Like Jesus, James and Paul, we see the Law as a comprehensive whole - which is NOT severable). We believe that if you commit to obeying even one of its provisions, you are obligated to observe the whole. Hence, for us, Christians are obligated to obey the intent or "spirit" of the Law as Christ summarized it. Moreover, we ONLY do that as a way of demonstrating our love for God and as a manifestation of the new entity which Christ's work has created in us - NOT as something which is necessary to gain entrance in God's Kingdom! In this way, we believe that we are among those who "keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ."

Hence, for those of you who insist on obligating yourselves to observe some or all of the provisions of Torah and claim to be disciples of Christ, you may want to take a closer look at these issues! If not, I sincerely hope your Torah observance works out for you. Even so, please don't worry about those of us who have decided to rest in what Jesus Christ has accomplished for us - we'll be fine! 


3 comments:

  1. Armstrong taught Pentecost on Monday before 1975. Were all those Armstrongites that died before 1975 willfully avoiding observing Pentecost on Sunday?

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  2. To be clear, my question is rhetorical. I believe those in the WCG that never observed Pentecost (since they did it on the wrong day) were no more willfully avoiding the Law than "mainstream" Christians who do not observe the Law; they believe what they are doing is correct.

    So, inasmuch as the COGs judge the intent and heart of New Covenant Christians for not observing the Law, why do they believe those that never observed Sunday Pentecost are exempt from their same judgment?

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    Replies
    1. I got it, but thanks for providing a clarification for those who may not have.

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