There was an announcement made last July 13, 2013 during the PCG Youth Camp at Edmond, Oklahoma about the prospect of the PCG returning to the Bricket Wood, Hertfordshire County, England where the second Ambassador College campus was once situated (1960-1974). Pastor General Gerald Flurry said that they wanted to have another college there and eventually establish an office which would also be used for the planned archaeological dig in Ireland in search of the “ark of the covenant” and the possibility of acquiring the stone of destiny as well. It has not been quite clear though if they are just planning to buy it or has already bought some parcels of the real estate for $6.8 million. But the final deal or negotiation however, would most probably be sealed around September / October 2013 according to their previous estimation, but as hinted at a latter announcement, they suggested an April 2014 timeline. Nevertheless, whatever the date might be, one thing is for sure, the purchase of Bricket Wood shall surely come to pass according to God’s prophecy.
Former members of the Worldwide Church of God can remember a generally accepted understanding that a second Ambassador College campus was established by Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong during 1960 in Bricket Wood, England. That after 14 years of operation, Mr. Armstrong has closed its doors, the reason of which has not been clearly stated. Here is a brief description of what could have been the probable cause:
The Bricket Wood campus operated for 14 years on the former estate of Sir David Yule several miles north of London. There are a variety of speculations as to why Bricket Wood closed. …While funding was given as a primary reason, others speculate that it was due to a fallout among the Worldwide Church of God ministry in the United Kingdom. Leading administrators on the campus included Ernest L. Martin, Roderick C. Meredith, Ronald L. Dart, and Raymond F. McNair.
To further analyze what has really happened, here is what Mr. Armstrong wrote in the November 2, 1981 Pastor General’s Report and later in the November 16, 1981 Worldwide News about what has transpired during that 1974 debacle:
Sin entered Pasadena leadership. The Church stopped its phenomenal growth. I had to deal with sins near the top in 1971 and 1972. In the spring of 1974 a ministerial rebellion, led to a considerable extent by two top-ranking ministers at Pasadena, resulted in some 30 or more ministers leaving the Church… Even now, at this late date, I learn that this “about face” altering of a decision THE LIVING CHRIST put in to His Church caused great consternation among loyal ministers and members in Britain. But by this maneuver of Satan, the people of God’s Church started off the track. I say “started off.” For watering down of God’s truth on healing, the Sabbath, and many more vital doctrines followed in its wake. But as Satan maneuvered to start ALL HUMANITY off the track in the garden of Eden, so in these latter days he maneuvered to use the women of God’s Church to start the END-TIME Church off the track. And the whole Church was deceived! (Pastor General’s Report, Vol. 3, No. 41; November 2, 1981 pp. 3-4)
What?! The whole Church was deceived then, even Mr. Armstrong? Is it really true?
Do you think that same wily Satan could not deceive people in God’s Church today? Of all the people on earth, WE are the very ones he wants most to deceive. He has the rest of the world deceived already. And remember a deceived person does not know he is deceived – else he would not BE deceived! (ibid.)
In this last end, would there be another instance wherein the whole Church could have been deceived once again? The principle by which the deception is being perpetrated is prophesied in Isaiah 29:15 – “Woe unto them that seek deep to hide their counsel from the Lord, and their works are in the dark, and they say, Who seeth us? and who knoweth us?” This is also the same principle that was used by Satan through the WCG liberal ministers – they got the whole Church off the track. In order for us to fully understand we need to do a lot of remembering.
- Remember the technique that Satan used to deceive Eve in the Garden of Eden.
- Remember the technique that Satan used to deceive the whole Church during the 1970’s.
Well, we don’t have to get too far, there has only been one technique Satan has used to initiate his deception – through one seeming minor question which comes in so many forms. After this query, the next thing he will do is to appeal to one’s VANITY.
It was all done so SUBTLY! That is how Satan works. Now let’s understand what DID HAPPEN!… How cleverly, without our suspecting it, did Satan influence leading ministers to derail the Church in many ways! I want, now, to take you brethren through a history of this seemingly minor question of female makeup as it progressed during the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s in the Church. …This may be somewhat of a minor question, yet it was used by Satan to help derail the Church! It is only one of a number of points that led us off track. This question was raised in the Church in the mid ’50s… “The question of lipstick and other forms of makeup had to be settled” …So actually the question was first raised by women who felt face-changing was wrong, not by ministers. …Many articles followed on the question. These articles covered many specific points and specific scriptures. There was an effort to get to every detailed point or question even in “the gray areas.” (ibid.)
Now let us consider again recent Church history: During a Bible study in PCG Headquarters in Edmond Oklahoma, there is one verse that was asked by a PCG minister in Jeremiah 4:15 which reads;
“For a voice declareth from Dan, and publisheth affliction from mount Ephraim.”(From Mr. Flurry’s sermon titled “Revelation 12”, dated December 08, 2012).
Dan, as Mr. Flurry said refers to Southern Ireland. It was Mr. Wik Heerma, a PCG Headquarters pastor, who asked that QUESTION regarding Jeremiah 4:15, which Mr. Flurry said he himself had some further questions about it. But during that sermon of his, he mentioned that this particular verse gives an indication that a work has to be done in Ireland even emphasizing the possibility of finding the Ark of the Covenant in it. And he also said that the PCG shall be having a feast site in Ireland by 2013. But look closely; here goes the same subtle strategy that Satan has employed time and time again – through a QUESTION! Does this mean that we in the PCG are once again in the midst of Satan’s cunning deception? If we will consider the context of the specific fulfillment of Isaiah 29 about Ariel and the Ezekiel 4 siege, indeed we are in the midst of such a deception! But who is Satan using? A SECRET COUNSEL OF MEN inside the Philadelphia Church of God! These are the same 25 men of Ezekiel 8 who turned their backs on God!
“Woe unto them that seek deep to hide their counsel from the Lord, and their works are in the dark, and they say, Who seeth us? and who knoweth us?”
We have to thank God that He has not left us in the dark, and we can know how these men works. They have employed the same strategy as what the liberals have done in the past – they “seek deep to hide their counsel from the Lord.” Here is what Mr. Armstrong further wrote on this very principle in which he himself was not fully aware of such secret counsel of men:
In early fall of 1974, my son (Garner Ted) caught me on the run as I was leaving for Tokyo and Manila, where I held a big campaign. It was a time when certain “scholars” among our leaders were engaged in “doctrinal research.” I had not realized until later that most of them were actually researching to try to prove Church teachings were in error, rather than to discover truth. I admit now and repent of the fact that, not realizing the real motive, I approved this doctrinal research team. (ibid.)
But one may ask, so what? That was already in the past; surely God would not allow His Church to be deceived again – This is the Philadelphia Church of God and we are God’s only true Church. We are the only ones who are doing God’s Work! It will never happen to us. Besides that, Mr. Flurry is That Prophet, he is God’s apostle and we have God’s government! We don’t have to worry about Satan’s deception.
And so was Mr. Armstrong, he was even the end-time fulfillment of Elijah the prophet, and also an apostle doing God’s Work with God’s government. Yet God allowed him and the whole Church to be deceived. Mr. Armstrong taught us that the fulfillments of Bible prophecies are usually in DUAL stages. So does that mean we can expect a duality of a Church-wide deception in this last end? Without a single doubt there is one before the Great tribulation and prior to the flight to the place of safety.
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