Rendering of PCG’s Intended Armstrong Auditorium (Rees Associates)
The Philadelphia Church of God (PCG) was criticized by a Marxist magazine article a couple of days ago:
Political Affairs Magazine, NY – June 12, 2008
By Gavin Callaghan
The article begins with a photograph showing the South African ANC leader, Jacob Zuma, dancing in full Zulu battle garb and animal skins, while beneath him the caption reads “Once the jewel of Africa, this nation is now going the way of the rest of the continent. The new leader of the ruling party won’t help matters.” Another prominent caption on the opposite page reads, sarcastically, “This is the man that the ruling party in South Africa has turned to to address the nation’s crushing internal crises.”
Thus begins a disturbing and racist article entitled “Don’t Expect Jacob Zuma to Fix South Africa” by Joel Hilliker, found in the March 2008 issue of the reactionary protestant periodical, The Philadelphia Trumpet. Published by radical Christian propagandist Gerald Flurry of The Philadelphia Church of God, this magazine, along with its associated television program “The Key of David,” unapologetically and even fervently purveys what would seem to be the dying last gasp of the old 19th-century philosophy of Anglo-American Imperialism, with its allied ideologies of Christian Manifest Destiny and old-fashioned colonialism…
Hilliker’s critique of Zuma’s Communist connections, though, is but the prelude to a more central critique of the possibility that Zuma and the ANC are “flirting with the policies” of Zimbabwe, and the possibility of “stripping land and other economic assets from whites and giving them to blacks” (a policy which Robert Morley, elsewhere in the same issue, implicitly connects with the so-called Israeli “land-for-peace process”.) http://www.politicalaffairs.net/article/articleview/7003/1/339/
The fact that a publication that refers to itself as “a Marxist Monthly” complains about an article that is critical of those with Marxist ties is not news.
While I have no intentions of trying to explain PCG’s article here (they can do that themselves if they wish to), I would like to address the subject of Anglo-Israelism and racism.
Political Affairs apparently believes that those who believe that God may have provided various blessings to specific groups of people is racist.
That premise from Political Affairs apparently shows a biased view of racism and is contrary to what the Bible teaches.
While it is true that the world is filled with racist groups, and some of them espouse Anglo-Israelism, the type of Anglo-Israelism espoused by the Living Church of God (LCG) is not racist.
For example, while we in the Living Church of God clearly believe that the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand were part of the promise that God gave to the descendants of Joseph in Genesis chapters 48 & 49, we do not believe that any one race is superior to any other. Nor do we believe that spiritual salvation has anything to do with race as we agree with Paul’s writing:
26 For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. 27 For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise ( Galatians 3:26-29).
The Apostle John made it clear that people of all races would be saved:
9 After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could number, of all nations, tribes, peoples, and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, with palm branches in their hands, 10 and crying out with a loud voice, saying, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!” (Revelation 7:9-11).
Furthermore, we in the Living Church of God believe that humans need to overcome racial predjudice. And unlike most other groups, this is actually part of our Official Statement of Fundamental Beliefs. Notice the following:
OVERCOMING RACIAL PREJUDICE
God’s Word commands all mankind to love their neighbors as themselves (Leviticus 19:18; Matthew 22:39; Acts 17:24-29). God reveals that salvation is now freely offered to both Jews and Gentiles (Acts 10:34-35; Romans 10:12-13; cf. Joel 2:32). We believe love and deep respect should be shown to people of all ethnicities (Romans 13:10).
While I do not doubt that many false charges will be leveled at LCG for preaching the truths of the Bible, teaching that God made promises to different peoples in the Bible that He will have fulfilled, in my view, is simply not racism.
An article of possibly related interest may be:
There are Many COGs: Why Support the Living Church of God? This is an article for those who wish to easily sort out the different COGs. It really should be a MUST READ for current and former WCG members or any interested in supporting the faithful church. It also explains a lot of what the COGs are all about.