First, let us consider what the prophet Jeremiah prophesied concerning the backsliding Israel: “And I said after she had done all these things, Turn thou unto me. But she returned not. And her treacherous sister Judah saw it.” (Jer. 3:7)
The PCG saw what happened to the Laodiceans after Mr. Armstrong died, yet why did God gave a very stern description of spiritual Judah even calling her treacherous?
“And I saw, when for all the causes whereby backsliding Israel committed adultery I had put her away, and given her a bill of divorce; yet her treacherous sister Judah feared not, but went and played the harlot also (v. 8).
“And I saw – Verse 7 concludes in this way, that Judah had seen how Israel had not returned at the call of (God)…For the prophet draws a parallel between the behavior of Israel and of Judah.” – Lange’s Commentary
Does this mean that the PCG has “played the harlot also”? But how? “And it came to pass through the lightness of her whoredom, that she defiled the land, and committed adultery with stones and with stocks (v. 9).
Let’s define some words for a clearer understanding of the verse: The word “through” according to Strong’s means “properly a part of; hence prepositionally” and can also mean: because of, by reason of
While “lightness” comes from the same Hebrew root word for “voice” used in Jeremiah 4:15 (For a “voice” declareth from Dan…”). So the phrase “through the lightness” could also be rendered this way – “because of a voice” or “by reason of a voice.” From Barnes Commentary let’s consider the word “defiled”:
“Defiled – Rather, profaned. The land especially consecrated to (God’s) service was treated by Judah as a common land.”
By gathering all the information above, we can better understand what the treachery really is all about. Since Jerusalem has been the focal point of archeological activity since Mr. Armstrong was alive, and in as much as what gives the most weight is that the Eternal has chosen Jerusalem, so that, if the PCG goes to Ireland or someplace else, which God has no clear sign of approval, is it not the same as whoredom which is equated in the Bible to idolatry – the desertion of the worship of the true God, for the worship of idols?
As the commentary noted that the land (Jerusalem) became defiled because it was treated by Judah (PCG) as a common land, i.e., putting it on the same level and equal weight to Ireland! And they defiled the land of Jerusalem “because of a voice” of their whoredom.
Even the prophet Micah reiterated that Jerusalem is to be Judah’s HIGH PLACE not to be treated on the same level as any other land: “For the transgression of Jacob is all this, and for the sins of the house of Israel. What is the transgression of Jacob? is it not Samaria? and what are the high places of Judah? are they not Jerusalem?” (Mic. 1:5)
On top of that, the act of committing adultery involves an archaeological dig in Ireland!
“and committed adultery with stones and planks” (see Strong’s of “stocks”)
Jesus Christ said:
“Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.” (Matthew 5:27-28)
The word “lust” from Strong’s is G1937: epithumeo; to set the heart upon, i.e. long for rightfully or otherwise:–covet, desire, would fain, lust after.
“Lust” in the dictionary means: to desire eagerly; longing desire; eagerness to possess or enjoy
Christ plainly called it adultery even if we just look on a woman to set our hearts upon her – it’s already a violation of God’s eternal spiritual law! In God’s view, this applies also on looking on Ireland to desire eagerly and to set our hearts upon having an archaeological dig there. Even though it’s just yet a plan – the PCG IS ALREADY COMMITTING SPIRITUAL ADULTERY!
Do we not then wonder that inspite of the initial anticipation of having a significant find, i.e., something royal, during the 2012 archeological dig on the Ophel in Jerusalem; yes, they may have found a Royal Israelite, or Proto-Aeolic Capital, but notice that they also found an ancient Egyptian idol named Bes that was found out of a wall and according to Dr. Mazar, it is the first ever to be found in Jerusalem. Add to that the several mikvah purification baths. Does this mean something for the PCG? Does this mean that we have to purify ourselves of idolatry? Have we turned our backs to God and returned to spiritual Egypt? In God’s eyes, YES, we have gone back to Egypt! Notice that the idol was found out of a wall. The wall symbolizes the ministry. It’s like what God had shown Ezekiel in chapter 8:10. (The “tile” or “brick” in Ezekiel chapter 4 signifies a return to Egypt. Lange’s Commentary even pointed out referring to the brick: “Besides, there is the significant allusion to Egypt and the bondage of Israel there”).
“And yet for all this her treacherous sister Judah hath not turned unto me with her whole heart, but feignedly, saith the LORD.” (v. 10)
“Feign” according to the Webster Dictionary mean:
- To invent or imagine; to form an idea or conception of something not real.
- To make a show of; to pretend; to assume a false appearance; to counterfeit.
Could it be said then that when Mr. Flurry asked the PCG for a Church-wide fast like the one last January 8, 2012, that all the people were guilty of not turning their whole heart unto God? Is it just for a pretense? (see also Zech. 7: 5-10) While Matthew Henry Commentary has this to say regarding verse 10:
“Note, the treachery of those who pretend to cleave to God will be reckoned for, as well as the apostasy of those who openly revolt from him. Judah saw what Israel did, and what came of it, and should have taken warning. Israel’s captivity was intended for Judah’s admonition; but it had not the designed effect. Judah feared not, but thought herself safe because she had Levites to be her priests and sons of David to be her kings. Note, it is an evidence of great stupidity and security when we are not awakened to a holy fear by the judgments of God upon others. It is here charged on Judah”
“And the LORD said unto me, The backsliding Israel hath justified herself more than treacherous Judah.” (v. 11)
Why was Israel (Laodiceans) more justified than treacherous Judah (PCG)? Because “both the prophet and the priest go about into a land that they know not” (Jer. 14:18). They both followed “a voice from Dan” (Jeremiah 4:15) and they led God’s people into it. Now, there is already a feast site in Ireland for 2013. And there was also a sermon given in the 2012 ministerial conference regarding a possible archaeological dig in Ireland.
To make things much worse, now, the PCG is focusing more on the messenger, even the life of the prophet Jeremiah, rather than on his message. Consider what Mr. Flurry has written regarding focusing on the messenger rather on the message:
As the WCG discontinued Mystery of the Ages, it introduced Who Was Jesus? Mr. Armstrong said the big problem with the Protestants was their preaching about the person of Christ while rejecting His message. Mystery of the Ages is about Christ’s message. The Who Was Jesus? booklet is mostly about the person of Christ. It’s this booklet’s direction we need to be concerned about. …I fail to see such importance in this book. I do see a DISTURBING CHANGE IN DIRECTION. It’s the focus that should disturb us. The WCG has moved away from the message of Christ and is focusing more and more on the Messenger. Just as the Protestants do. (Malachi’s Message, p. 26)
Can we see a DISTURBING CHANGE IN DIRECTION in what the PCG is doing right now? For emphasis, Mr. Flurry noted, that it’s the focus that should disturb us.
The PCG seems to be moving away from the message of Christ and is focusing more and more on the messenger – just as the WCG did. But much more than that, the PCG did it with more extravagance even through a musical and step-dancing performance titled, Jeremiah – The Musical.
Speaking as a fool, one may ask: But why the life of Jeremiah? – Instead, why not King David who is a man after God’s own heart? The PCG saw what the WCG did when they focused on the messenger, Jesus Christ through the Who Was Jesus? booklet. But what has the PCG done?
“The LORD said also unto me in the days of Josiah the king, Hast thou seen that which backsliding Israel hath done? she is gone up upon every high mountain and under every green tree, and there hath played the harlot. And I said after she had done all these things, Turn thou unto me. But she returned not. And her treacherous sister Judah saw it. And I saw, when for all the causes whereby backsliding Israel committed adultery I had put her away, and given her a bill of divorce; yet her treacherous sister Judah feared not, but went and played the harlot also.” (Jer. 3:6-8)
The PCG is now focusing on the very life of Jeremiah the prophet! A MERE MORTAL MAN!
Is this not IDOLATRY? Is this not ADULTERY? Is this not TREACHERY? Is this not a fulfillment of “when the transgressors are come to the full” in Daniel 8:23?
“And the LORD said unto me, The backsliding Israel hath justified herself more than treacherous Judah.” (Jer. 3:11)
As far as God is concerned, the WCG (backsliding Israel) is even more justified than TREACHEROUS PCG (Judah)!
“Judah hath dealt treacherously, and an abomination is committed in Israel and in Jerusalem; for Judah hath profaned the holiness of the LORD which he loved, and hath married the daughter of a strange god.” (Mal. 2:11)
This is the worst kind of sin God could ever charge on His own people! Yet, as the prophet Jeremiah wrote, “In spite of all this, her unfaithful sister Judah did not return to me with all her heart, but only in pretense,” declares the LORD” (v. 10, NIV).
There’s really a problem with spiritual Judah’s heart as pictured by the ailment and death of That Prophet’s wife. This is the real reason God specifically made sure that His house, the Armstrong Auditorium, be completed and inaugurated on the very same day of her death anniversary.
As Matthew Henry Commentary noted,
“IT IS AN EVIDENCE OF GREAT STUPIDITY AND SECURITY WHEN WE ARE NOT AWAKENED TO A HOLY FEAR BY THE JUDGMENTS OF GOD UPON OTHERS. IT IS HERE CHARGED ON JUDAH”
If spiritual Judah (the PCG), has indeed committed such a treacherous act, then God must be very much agitated about His sanctuary. But where is the deception coming from?
The Church is not apt to be deceived by people from without. The Bible shows that God’s Church is usually deceived from within. When WCG leaders moved away from Mystery of the Ages (and Christ’s message) to Who Was Jesus? (and the person of Christ), it was time to start asking some hard questions about the direction of the WCG. One approach is focused on CHRIST—the other on Christ’s MESSAGE. The same mistake was made in the 1970s. That is why Mr. Armstrong was warning us in 1985 NOT TO LET HISTORY REPEAT ITSELF! (Malachi’s Message, p. 28)
Is history repeating itself? Are we being deceived into believing that we can now focus on the messenger, even Jeremiah? Are we committing the same mistake that was made in the 1970s and later after Mr. Armstrong died? Is there really something wrong with God’s own Church today?
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