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  1. 3 points
    Yup, the millet is long gone, but the gut reaction lingers. Ugh. In case you don't know, that's an analogy for the "Word" that VPW fed us, amounting to a con of Himalayan proportions. And I should know. I've actually been to the Himalayan mountains … in May 2009. Socks, eye-witnesses willing to give their two cents are few and far between. I get "fan mail" through the Contact page on my website from former Wayfers either defending VPW and "shame on me," or from some too afraid to speak up or out due to relatives still in TWI or due to their own weariness … which I totally understand. Who wants to put themselves out there for criticism and hate mail, which I get now and then. But I knew that going into what I did ... publishing my story in a book. Wake up people, Wierwille set this whole thing in motion from day one. It was never "pure" but got corrupted later on. He was out to set himself up as "the answer man." PLEEEAASE. Sigh.
  2. 2 points
    I'm sure that there's people out there who like to pretend I spend all my free time just slandering people. As a reminder they're wrong, I'd like to point out that I think MOST OF US had the best intentions and a lot of us really wanted to serve God and be our best for God. For MOST OF US, I don't fault our goals, our intentions, our sincerity. As for wierwille, that was another story. He himself lied about what "sincerity" was. We agree it's " no guarantee of truth", since someone can sincerely believe the Earth is flat. But someone who is "sincere" is someone who genuinely says what they think and believe, period. vpw said that "the salesman who tries to sell you the toothbrush that has only 1 bristle in it, he's gotta be real sincere!" Looking back, it says a lot that he made that claim. He said that the salesman who tried to INTENTIONALLY DECEIVE YOU, but who puts forth an IMAGE of sincerity, a FALSE FRONT of sincerity, that person IS " sincere." So, vpw really believed " sincerity" was something that could be COMPLETELY FAKED. THIS is the man whom we trusted as having done as he claimed, dedicating his life to God and the Bible and so on. Because we believed that, we gave him a free pass on scrutiny, and a lot of stuff flew under our radars (like his definition of "sincerity." ) Someone commented on my calling vpw a " plagiarizing rapist." That term offends some people. They think you can't call someone that. The truth is- you can call someone that IF IT IS TRUE. A leader is supposed to be found BLAMELESS. If I made the claims and they were without grounds, then he would be found BLAMELESS. Was vpw a rapist? A NUMBER of women have come forth. Some said he molested them, some said he raped them, some said he drugged THEN molested or raped them. According to the Bible, if 3 or more witnesses claim something, we are to accept it. We had MANY women who said vpw raped them. We had people break down the entire SYSTEM vpw set up. First, he had people write " from birth to the corps" papers, if they wanted to enter the way corps. He used those papers to help screen his victims. People with a past having been a victim of something can be victimized by it again, later, more easily than others. We had accounts of women who said he had their paper IN HIS HAND when he called them in to try and rape them. vpw had A FEW places where he had privacy and a sort of bed- his office, his mobile office, etc. vpw had a network of conspirators who kept an eye out. One could be counted on to bring the women to him and make it look like an innocent calling. Others were to watch her after vpw raped her, and " counsel" her to not consider it rape, not to go to the police. If she seemed likely to go to the police, others gave her the bum's rush off grounds, sending her home by slow Greyhound bus. Why that way? Partly because it was cheap, partly because it gave them time to make phone calls and ruin her reputation before she got home- so nobody would believe her when she said vpw raped her. We had accounts of specific things he said to different women- variations on the same line of patter, since he used that as part of his strategy. We have accounts of what drinks he plied them with, and other details that make me sick. In short, we had PREMEDITATION. He put a LOT of work into his plan. He planned out who to attack, where to attack them, how to attack them, and what to do afterwards to make sure he didn't go to jail. Ever wonder why he wanted an armed bodyguard as he walked the grounds? He never said why he might need one, but I think we all have the most likely possibility in mind.... So, he was a rapist. Furthermore, he was a plagiarist. He also put in a lot of work into getting ahold of the work of quality Christians, concealing those works, then presenting their work as his own. The contents of the pfal class were all ripped off of Leonard, Stiles, and Bullinger (with a little from a few others.) He claimed he worked alone with God, and INSINUATED that everything he taught was from God Almighty to his ears. That included crackpot theories he got from the phone hotline of the John Birch Society. Oh, yes, ONCE he claimed what he taught wasn't original. Was in in the introduction of one book with his name as the author? NO. In the promotional book "The Way-Living in Love", buried over 100 pages in, was an offhand comment. "Nothing I teach is original. Putting it together, that was the original part." No such claim in the Orange Book. No such claim in the White Book. In fact, the White Book he supposedly wrote all by himself in a hotel room, living off grapes. If you remove all of Stiles work and Bullinger's work from the book, then remove Leonard's, you probably will just have the introduction. All the CONTENT was from those men- which is NOT stated anywhere in that book. vpw had 2 types of books with his name as the author. The later, more polished books were written by the research department. He added the introduction and his name as the author. I'm given to understand this is legal- but I personally think it's unethical. He should at least have listed himself as EDITOR, not AUTHOR. The others are the older twi books, and those are compilations of the works of other writers, sometimes with rephrasings, sometimes still with their own phrasings retained. Side by side comparisons of their books have been shown. Ever notice his vocabulary and speaking style sometimes were not reflected in the books? That's because they weren't his books. Ever hear him call someone a " faith-blaster?" That was another writer's term, and vpw just retyped it. By vpw's terms, it at least would have been a " believing-blaster", except he never used "blaster" when speaking. In the early editions of the White Book, he mentioned finding teacher who could make the Holy Spirit field fit. A few editions later, he skips mentioning the man, not even giving Leonard his due credit anonymously. vpw knew very well what he was doing, and tried to cover his tracks somewhat. So, in short, vpw was a plagiarizing rapist. He taught some good Bible because he was parroting the work of those who were quality Christians. I'm thankful to have heard it, but I'm not giving vpw a pass on plagiarizing or raping- or anything else he did- because of it.
  3. 2 points
    Quote- WordWolf replying to Mike B- [There's some who claim it's evil for us to expose what vpw and lcm did- but those same people are not outraged that they did it. To them, it's worse to expose vpw as a plagiarizing rapist who drugged women than for him to have drugged and raped the women. I'm NOT exaggerating.] Me- Yes, keep the image/idol sacred, do NOT pull it off the pedestal. Protect the abuser not the abused since he is 1) their HOPE, they have too much invested in "the way" and 2) re: connecting to the suffering caused by him, they are afraid, mind-controlled, and disconnected in basic ways from human need, love, empathy, suffering, their own and others. Quote- Mike B- I believe we were taught more Truth than any other organization on the planet, and I still believe that to be true. " Quote- WordWolf- [Due to vpw plagiarizing some quality Christians, I believe we were taught some Truth while in twi, but not everything we were taught there was Truth or truth. Furthermore, there's plenty of quality Christians who've never heard of twi, vpw, or anyone connected with twi. vpw did his best to put forth that himself was some great one, that ALL the quality teachings he had were from him, and that all Christians everywhere else were flawed and INFERIOR to twi Christians. I believe all of that was error- to say the least. The idea that God wasn't relying solely on a plagiarizing rapist to get things done is rather comforting- and rather sensible, IMHO.] Me- THANK YOU, YES with a few additional thoughts. If I may share, it is still very painful to me that I was totally duped for 35++ years by certain men (and women) who damaged my life and my family's lives so effectively- vpw et al, then chris g and co, with their "their rightly dividing The Word", etc. Yes God rescued me when I was lost, thru the way ministry; yes I learned some invaluable unique truths. Yes, the community and programs were places where I could initially gain some attachments and safety in my recovery from previous traumas, until they were no longer safe places, and re-traumatizing occurred. So several things are coming up, if I may share and process further: 1) brokenness- the sexual abuse/promiscuity, the mental abuse plus the emotional neglect, and the Cultic dogmatic withdrawing mindset caused severe brokenness in my life, in my marriage, and then in my children's lives due to the dissolving of said social/spiritual community, divorce, and their father's brokenness. 2) Posts re: emotional/mental vulnerability to and total acceptance of a "benevolent" father figure's views/life style/culture; resulting auto-pilot, lack of focus, mind control, self-sacrifice, ETC. Also, for those with an intellectual background perhaps, the whole "mathematical exactness and scientific precision" promise drew us in. What a deception. So you teach me (over and over again), I receive it repeatedly deeper and deeper... 3) Naming vpw as a plagiarizing rapist- good! And I would like to attempt to en-capsulize the man with the additional names of deluded/deluding, extremely narcissistic, extremely controlling, power/money stealing, psychopathic [i.e. a person having an egocentric and antisocial personality marked by a lack of remorse for one's actions, an absence of empathy for others, and often criminal tendencies], plagiarizing rapist. 4) It has been a LONG HAUL to find and actually trust God my true Father and Jesus my true Lord, Savior, and Friend. But it has been worth it. SO WORTH IT. 5) Breaking soul ties and attachments based on deceivers' truth mixed with lies, their abusive leadership, and my naive trust/shortsightedness- it's still a journey out of trauma victim realities.... E.g. I loved the "Victim to Victor" blue book chapter and (supposed) author... Now I say YES! to GOD"S TRUTHS AND DELIVERANCE, and NO! and to the plagiarizing poser!! I was a victim who thought I was wrong and you were right. But no longer. Think I will read DWBH's words until they sink in- "... you hypocritical, whited sepulchers. You are anti(against)-Christ in words and works. You are vain babblers...You are an insult to the Lord who bought you. You are a false teacher... You preach for filthy lucre's sake... You bow your knee to Baal. You are anathema to the Lord Jesus Christ and His Heavenly Father. You have been weighed in the balances and found wanting. Your "ministry" is a sham and a fraud. You serve the god of this world. REPENT! Ask God for forgiveness and apologize to those whom you have despitefully used. You have raped and plundered The Good Shepherd's precious flock. Their blood is on your hands. You cannot fool God! You cannot hide from the Righteous Judge either. You return to your own vomit, day after day, year after year. The blood of the righteous which you have shed screams through the ground against you. My only prayer for you is, "May the Lord have mercy upon your souls." AMEN.
  4. 2 points
    I agree with Socks regarding this, as I was an eye-witness, like Socks, to the manner in which VPW conducted himself and ran the organization: " … I don't subscribe to the theory that "the Way was fine until Martindale/Geer/Finnegan/Whoever screwed everything up".......His main guys all learned from him and acted in complete alignment with his wishes."
  5. 2 points
    I thought my parents were important too. Wonderful examples, both, of Christian love and support and selfless service to others, including respect and care for their own elders, taught to me and still carried on by me. I never understood why the "Wierwille family" was so important - and why TWI attempted to teach me that my own family was less to be respected and honoured. It didn't seem right at the time, and it never became "right" in my eyes. I'm jolly sure it wasn't right in God's eyes. If nothing else, they should have been honoured as brothers and sisters in the faith. Instead, my mother was significantly dishonoured by my then "twig leader" (who I think has now repented of his thuggishness under TWI). Praise the Lord, I'm now a part of the wider Christian community, where others, especially older folk, are embraced, honoured, respected, and treated with courtesy.
  6. 2 points
    You're welcome! Yes, I have. A little early in my youth but moreso in later adulthood. I've read quite a bit about it and have some favorites in the field, although not many. Philosophy wasn't a popular term in the Way anytime I was involved (68 - 89). Philosophy is often considered antithetical to Christianity which is thought to be anti-intellectual by many. That line of thought contrasts Christianity the religion as being a set of revealed truths, a faith in a revelation that defines life with Philosophy as an inquiry into the fundamentals of life that tries to consider it as a whole and reason through what we know by our senses, not "super senses" so to speak, if there were to be such a thing. My thought on that is that if I take it all off the table and go back to zero - what have I got? Christianity itself is a bit of a hybrid, but not for obvious reasons. Christ is "the Logos", the Word, the intent and meaning, the purposes, of God. God who can not be seen by my human eyes can be seen through the human being Jesus Christ, "He that has seen me has seen the Father". A logos is very much attached to it's source, if I can put it that way - it's essentially an expression of the reasoning of the one reasoning. And it's why Jesus Christ can't "Be God" literally, if he's the Logos of God anymore than say, a child I might have and raise whose sole purpose would be to carry on my work and legacy can literally "Be Me". It's a matter of consciousness, Jesus had a conscious life that was not "the same" as God's, they both didn't think through the same conscious facility, seen in how Jesus prayed TO God, and described Him as "Father". So in a way, even considering all the permutations and conjecture throughout history on Jesus Christ "the Word" and what that means, it could never really mean that he's God. He is by intention a necessary part of the means I am given BY God to understand and relate to Himself. That's not a small thing in an of itself by any means. So - that being the case (either way but easier to see through reasoning the "Logos" of God) Christianity is a revealed belief that doesn't rely on human reasoning to exist but the revelation itself is now a part of the physical world and I can now reason with and through it and learn both from it and about it. Now - Paul wrote that the "full" revelation of Christ wasn't a product of man's effort and was unknown, a mystery, secret. He wrote about the physical not being able to understand the spiritual and since I accept that to be true I also have to accept that when and if the spiritual is expressed in the physical, it's expression must then be able to be reasoned to it's source - without that "domain" context I can't really know it in a meaningful way and that's eXACTly what Christianity does, it gives domain context to everything it covers. And I'd argue that while it's outside of the reasoning we see in history it's not outside the range of human reasoning to have considered this time we are in - something that gets missed in theology I think. Granted the Jews and the other nations weren't thinking that way and they were being generally led as Israel to their separate and chosen status - but it wouldn't have been impossible for anyone sitting down and considering what the Messiah might really be like and do in His coming to consider "...hey! What if God draws all mankind to Himself through our Messiah??!! I know, I know, that's not supposed to happen but doesn't it kinda make sense in a weird way...? What if - hey, that's a crazy idea but think about it....."... and then say "nawwwww! that's too crazy"..... Point being that everything about Christianity as it's been revealed and passed down including it's heritage history, is a physical reality, a moment in history, a tangible event, something that happened or was said and that had meaning and understanding in it's day and time. It's been written down, given the stamp of authenticity and can be now clearly understood to be "in" "The Word of God". In the same way we believe in Jesus Christ, not as an idea of an intention - but as person who lived, died, rose again, ascended. A real person. Point to the point being that in order to learn that, know it, understand it and get to the point I'm living it, everything I am doing in believing in Christ is essentially believing in the meaning of past events that have meaning now. So in it's own world it's not just a fuzzy idea or a revealed truth - it's a real man, a real God, and a real meaning for things I now really consider to be - well, real. So the effort I engage in is one of observation and consideration. In this same way the essentials of my own Christianity are tangible, with real events and real things that also have lead me to believe what I believe in - including what I've learned in the Bible. It's not only a belief in a set of values I've been taught or a fact someone told me is true - my own facts follow suit with the ones I've learned from others and in fact are probably at least as important to my beliefs now as what's in the Bible. I guess I choose to not get stuck in arguing objectivity and subjectivity and never get to the real meat of it all which is - is there really anything going on here with all this and if there is, how can I learn and understand it. And since the spirit of God is now in me and I have the "mind of Christ", my new capacity to live in this life would logically include the ability to reason within my new universe. - Glad you liked the Mickey Mouse stuff - an idea once fell on me like a cinder block once - that "the truth" can always be seen from any angle. God is with us always, even to the depths of hell or the furthest reaches of life - God is with us. Some people see God as being someone who does good things. I kinda see good wherever I find it, and see God. Or try to anyway. PEACE!
  7. 2 points
    Thanks for the link - - and here is link to the 2nd part part 2 of vpw and plagiarism …and at the end of part 2, Charlene has this note: “Note from Charlene: Anyone who ever worked in The Way’s Biblical Research Department, as I did, knows the truth about Wierwille plagiarizing from others. We used to rationalize this by saying, well, he never said he taught anything original, he said he took what he learned from others, put it together (like a puzzle), and “made it accurate.” Really? Accurate according to whom?” The fact that the Bible clearly shows lying and stealing are both no-no’s makes plagiarism a double whammy – since plagiarizing is stealing the work of others and claiming it is your own work. One of the first lies I stumbled across was when I found out wierwille lied about taking correspondence courses from the Moody Correspondence School. see letter from Moody Correspondence School That led me on a long journey of mind-expanding questions. Like what else did he lie about? What is a lie? It’s a false statement made with deliberate intent to deceive. What happens when a liar starts believing the lies they tell to others? At some point we’re probably talking about a serious delusion. Looking back over my years of involvement with The Way International, I sometimes wonder what the intent behind his deception was. Maybe he started out with good intentions and just wanted a shortcut to becoming a person of influence who could help others… I dunno. But good intentions don’t guarantee good results. Well…if the proof is in the pudding – the end result of his efforts was the establishment of an abusive, ever-more-entangling and exploitative organization (The Way International) based on his delusion of greatness. As devoted followers many of us bought into that delusion and believed we were doing great things for God. wierwille’s lies had a subtle way of promoting himself as a trusted leader/teacher, and at the same time encouraged followers to use his products (PFAL, other classes, programs, books, magazines, etc.) because they were based on “the accuracy of The Word”. Perhaps as a smokescreen to conceal plagiarism wierwille even claimed that God said (in an audible voice! ) he would teach the Word to wierwille like it hadn’t been known since the first century if he would just teach it to others…sorry to say I bought into that lie too…Lies upon lies. One definition of a cult is a system of religious veneration and devotion directed toward a particular figure or object. What comes to mind are some of the things I’ve heard during my years of involvement – here’s a few choice ones: referring to wierwille as “our father in the Word”, “PFAL is God’s epistle to the 20th century”, and “remember who taught you the Word”. All in all, great respect and even reverence was always heaped upon wierwille …oh and don’t forget his teachings on “the accuracy of The Word”. A cult figure and object indeed! The propagation of lies helps develop a certain mindset in followers. The lies are somewhat like malware. Malware is malicious software – which refers to all types of threats like viruses, spyware, worms, Trojans, etc. These computer programs are designed to infiltrate and damage computers without the user’s consent…The TWI mindset is basically intellectual malware that’s full of lies. It’s a mindset that cannot see the invisible walls of its own mental prison. Devoted followers never saw wierwille’s works as plagiarized material because of a rationale based on lies. As Charlene said in the note above “We used to rationalize this by saying, well, he never said he taught anything original, he said he took what he learned from others, put it together (like a puzzle), and “made it accurate.” …maybe it's the old hidden-in-plain-sight trick: plagiarism goes unnoticed because of all the attention that's given to how "accurate" it supposedly is. Jesus said the truth will set you free (John 8:32). On the flip side – maybe it’s lies that keep us in bondage...Behold the sneaky intellectual malware! It starts out in PFAL, where we heard from wierwille things like the battle of the senses versus revelation faith – basically insinuating you can’t trust the five senses or even your logic when dealing with spiritual matters. We were expected to just trust “the teacher” he’ll lay it all out for us - as far as what is true and real. Malware is transmitted to its target anytime there are vulnerabilities in the system – in this case the student’s critical thinking skills. wierwille’s insidious teaching of Genesis 3 was effective enough to convince a lot of folks that doubting, questioning or in any way challenging his teaching on “the accuracy of the Word” was equivalent to how the serpent tricked Adam and Eve out of "the Word" – and that’s the road down – you question or doubt something wierwille taught and you're skating on thin ice - you could trip out of “The Word”! Oh horror of horrors! By the time I got in the way corps this idea was strongly reinforced by a teaching wierwille gave from John 13:30 where Judas left Jesus and it was night. The essence of how wierwille applied that verse to our commitment with TWI was to say if you trip out from the ministry that taught you the accuracy of the Word your only option is oblivion...malicious lies upon lies that can ensnare your very soul...this bears repeating: the truth will set you free – lies keep you in bondage. So…where to go from here…One of the things I use on the journey of mind-expanding questions is an idea from I Thessalonians 5:21 Prove all things; hold fast that which is good…My PFAL books are in a box in the attic - why? well, besides plagiarizing he was also incompetent when it came to the biblical languages, being inconsistent with principles of interpretation and using goofy logic - it's difficult to sort through his hodge podge of twisted theology - - and frankly I just don't trust the liar.…however I still keep some of Bullinger’s stuff handy on my bookshelf – The Companion Bible, How to Enjoy the Bible, and Figures of Speech in the Bible. And I don’t agree with everything Bullinger said either…that’s the freedom I now enjoy since I left TWI.
  8. 1 point
    Please guide me if there has already been a post on this topic, couldn't find it recently discussed- So! I have been realizing that the doctrine that A&E were totally separated from God/"died spiritually" immediately after falling in a totally black and white "picture", and the dispensational (administrations) doctrinal "boxing" taught by vpw et al has affected my life negatively. (I realize this is a huge topic, so will just throw out some thoughts, and see if anyone is interested...) There was zero Imago Dei teaching - that A&E were still functioning somewhat as God's image bearers. Or that GOD'S heart of unconditional love towards them did not change one iota; logically He would have grieved for the loss of the perfect relationship. And He had the plan for the Savior "ready to go". Eve believed she had birthed "a man from the Lord" - they still had many of the same Godly mental, emotional, etc patterns they had had, but now these would have been under attack, and the tempting, hindering, accusing, fear mongering, etc which is satan's influence in the world, would be influencing them. But they still had Truth deeply embedded and experimentally learned, correct? I also think Dispensationalism keeps us (it did me) from really connecting Jesus' character to that of Jehovah, Elohim, (et al His names and "sides") in the Old Testament. So, yes, A&E became carnal, as we were/I was before getting born again. However, God had knit me together in my Mom's womb, He was working over-time to draw me to Him, and I was drawing towards Him years before I actually invited Jesus into my heart. And He still works thru many ppl and situations, and is not at all limited to just those who have His spirit residing them and have declared a life-long commitment to Him. The "people without spirit are on the level of animals with just body and soul" teaching... That eroded humility and built up pride, and contributed to the "us/them dichotomy, like being the "special ppl", the born again ones, and then being in the "household" as well. Covenant theology, the little that I know of it, seems much more revealing of a God of continual Presence, grace, relationship, mercy, support, and love. God had a covenant w/ A&E which they broke, but He was right there with the solution in Jesus; He just continually "adjusted things" to give room for man's free will. BUT all along He had His Plan A, what with foreknowledge and all. I think there is a lot more accurate continuity with the perspective that God is always interacting w/ His ppl (and often others) as the same covenanting Father, rather than thinking of Him primarily as a "boxer upper" of administrations... And back to Adam and Eve - after they blew it, I think God got to really teach and help them, and then all mankind, right? (Well except for the nincompoops who just didn't listen.) Kind of like interacting with your teen-age adolescents - never a dull moment! Or like the younger son in the forgiving father parable, and the older bro as well... After A&E turned away and disobeyed (maybe even just for a few seconds?), He could really reveal so much more about His character and person than they could have known before the fall, especially for us in Jesus and after Pentecost... All for now. Blessings all!
  9. 1 point
    I agree - saying we are not a mix of all that stuff from before but we now have something special worked out with what Jesus Christ accomplished is a big spiritually defining deal! Besides all that he achieved for us spiritually, I think there might be a practical interpretive tool that the Gospels/his earthly life provided. I’ll get to that further down – but first I want to mention something that got me thinking along that line. I just finished reading an interesting book “Making Sense of the Bible” by Adam Hamilton and will probably reread it a few more times down the road since I found a few of the author’s ideas very intriguing. One of the ideas is about how God inspires people today may not be all that different than it was in biblical times… That alone is a lot to think about... And spoiler alert - in case you haven't noticed - a while back I started leaning to a more liberal theology ( which I shared on another thread concerning the Bible ). Our current knowledge of the world often presents challenges when studying the Bible because of the much larger frame of reference that we have. I feel - to be honest - within that larger frame of reference - I must differentiate between the human and divine elements of scripture. Viewing the Bible through an historical lens might recognize certain changes as religious developments. But that’s not to say God is developing…evolving… or has been brainstorming all along the way as if flying by the seat of his long flowing robes, making sure “the changes to policy and procedure” memos get out on time, informing folks of the current way God behaves or superintends his creation…I’m thinking more along the lines of how people mature in their understanding of God. What if the “fabric” of the God-inspired scriptures isn’t so seamless? One of the things that Hamilton’s book got me to think more deeply about is the idea of a dual authorship of scripture. I believe scripture is inspired of God - but there’s the human element of each author. What exactly does that mean to us when trying to understand it? How much of a nuance do we allow for when taking into account the author’s humanness, individual style, historical outlook and cultural context? One of the problems I have with the fundamentalist’s viewpoint of scripture as being inerrant even when speaking of the things of science, history, geography, etc. - is that this viewpoint ignores the human component of authorship and might give the impression that the God who created the cosmos is an ignorant old coot who forgets details and glosses over errors. What does all this have to do with an “administrations” viewpoint? maybe a lot...I dunno – maybe it's important when it comes to practical application. Some scholars suggest one of the things we should do in trying to understand the scriptures is try to understand what a passage meant to the original recipients. But if we look back at when a certain passage occurred and just say that’s how God ran things at that time – we might miss its relevancy for today. For instance, in “The NIV Cultural Background Study Bible” (editors John Walton & Craig Keener) when handling the fall of Adam and Eve in Genesis 3 say that one can imagine a variety of ways that people might strive to “be like God”; some commendable, others inappropriately ambitious or subversive… and that in the ancient near east the aspirations of wisdom and godlikeness were defensibly laudable pursuits… and that back then it was common for folks to meditate on ways in which people succeeded or failed in achieving wisdom and godlike noble qualities. TWI / Fundamentalists take a lot of stuff as very literal – so they focus on the forbidden fruit. What was it exactly? And if not speculating at what the fruit was they usually have a very rigid interpretation of the fall of mankind saying in an act of disobedience they questioned God’s word. While I do agree it was insubordination, I don’t think it was a specific fruit or item in the Garden of Eden – even though it says “you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil” since Genesis 1 Informs us that mankind was made in God’s image and was given a very comprehensive mandate to “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.” – and besides the fact that we are given very little details of the drama unfolding in Genesis 3 – leads me to believe there’s more here than just someone refusing to simply follow God’s Word without question. I mean that pretty much puts the kibosh on critical thinking. And in my opinion critical thinking is pretty much the cornerstone or foundation of how mankind still continues to fill the earth and subdue it. In my opinion asking questions...challenging ideas are all part of the critical thinking process for any discipline - theology, philosophy, the sciences. Even in matters of faith the intellect has its place.II Corinthians 5:7 says we walk by faith and not by sight. It does NOT say we walk by faith and not by reason...I go back and forth - sometimes it's faith in pursuit of reason and sometimes it's reason in the pursuit of faith. oy vey ! …For me among other things what the story of Adam and Eve shows is the danger of pursuing a shortcut to success. They were already godlike – made in the image of God….this is overly simplistic speculation here – but what if they were freaking out over God’s comprehensive mandate – wondering how they were going to accomplish all that and perhaps the tree of the knowledge of good & evil represented a way to circumvent a lot of long hard work. I dunno…just thinking out loud. ..anyway it seems to have a lot more relevancy for me today if I see the fall of mankind as a life lesson – there’s no such thing as a free lunch. Well, I know there’s a lot more to it than that – just gotta lighten up sometimes. When I get into my critical thinking mode and look at the grand scheme of things in the Bible - why is it I sometimes get bugged by the inconsistencies between one book and another and sometimes find it very difficult to nail down “ the biblical view” on certain topics? Also the character of God seems to change within dispensational or covenant theology...but maybe that's just the way I see things...this point is not a deal breaker. If Jesus Christ is the Word made flesh then why does it seem the loving and forgiving God he reveals is quite different from the law giving , sometimes violence advocating , sometimes outright vengeful God of the Old Testament? It’s also interesting to note that Jesus Christ himself never wrote a book of the Bible... I don’t mean to trash these theologies – but maybe I’m looking for a viewpoint that looks for common ground. Again this is not a deal breaker for me. At the end of this post I will offer some redeeming qualities of these theologies. So anyway, with Jesus Christ being the Word made flesh I find myself trying to work out a Christ-centric theology as an “interpretive filter” when I study the Bible – maybe that’s the common ground...maybe similar to that what-would-Jesus-do thing. May not be the most scholarly way of practical application but it might help me see what’s relevant to living the Christian lifestyle today. In other words, how would Jesus address a certain issue? Take for example how Jesus reinterpreted some Old Testament stuff in Matthew 5: 38 to 48 - what the law said about an eye for an eye. == == == Going over the draft of my post several times – and not wanting to give anyone the idea that I am totally opposed to dispensational or covenant theology - I kept thinking about Galatians 4 Where it says “But when the set time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law, that we might receive adoption to sonship.” I have sometimes wondered why Jesus Christ was born in the first century. Recalling all the prophecies in the Old Testament, all the laws that were laid down, all the accounts that exposed the human condition – I see all that as God’s way of preparing people…helping to guide them in their spiritual growth...in that regard dispensational or covenant theology goes a long way in showing how people grow practically, intellectually, emotionally, socially, spiritually as well as gaining a deeper understanding of God. that's all I have for now...I've tried to edit out the duplicate paragraphs the best I can...sorry for the mess of copying and pasting from my laptop to Grease Spot - - I think next time I will copy the entire draft to Grease Spot, minus the links to outside references - then I will go back and edit in the links...anyway thanks all for listening to my ramblings...time to go to bed...sweet dreams everyone
  10. 1 point
    A cult survives by hardening the line between "us" and "them", and making "them" so repugnant that we're glad we're not "them." That way, even when "us" are badly oppressed, we're still glad that at least we're not "them". For cults, only "us" qualify for salvation. In twi, for decades now, to leave twi is to leave " the household of God" and forfeit rewards, salvation, or both. People who stay in twi are so lulled to sleep that they don't question how wrong that is.
  11. 1 point
    Hi, Skyrider. I appreciate the kind words and best to you and yours, as well. A big thank you to readers of Undertow. Many thanks for taking time to do it! And thanks to Pawtucket for keeping GSC open all these years … Cheers.
  12. 1 point
    Penworks..........thanks again for publishing your story. The fact that you have received hate mail and criticism thru your contact page on your website......validates "the cult-like mentality" of many who became obsessed with wierwille's myths and mysticism. The repetition of classes, teaching and programs has indoctrinated a zealous following of loyalists......no matter what. Clearly, the academic field has a protective/vested interest in plagiarism and anyone who claims to do research ought to understand the destructive impact that plagiarism imposes. Wierwille's plagiarism was theft. Far more than just plagiarism, though.......wierwille has been charged with unethical, ungodly and criminal activity by a swath of the ex-twi community. And, rightfully so. As your book depicts the currents of manipulation, deception and exploitation moving beneath the surface and pulling seaward. One person's story of swirling relationships and judgments swept you away from standing safely on shore. Thanks again for the hundreds/thousands of hours you put into writing your book, Penworks. I know that it is one of those books that I will pick off the shelf from time to time and read, again, its salient truths. All the best to you and yours.
  13. 1 point
    I agree with Waysider…and I like the dichotomy that Skyrider mentioned (“we” or the group vs me the individual) - and that got me thinking on how I’ve readjusted my values scale over the years since I let TWI. I don’t know if trying to live a good, kind and honest life can be considered a “noble cause” but I can say with a clear conscience that’s something I’ve tried to do all my life. And that’s probably what frustrated me the most in trying to be a successful sales rep for TWI. I bought into the supposedly noble cause of “moving the Word over the world” but most of the time I felt like a failure because of my inability to get people signed up for the class. You’d think (using my personal scale of values) being friendly, helpful and sharing stuff about the Bible with all who crossed my path would count for something – but I can’t even begin to count the number of times leaders would stress we should spend 80% of our time with the 20% who want to “move the Word”. Which in way-speak meant (depending on what level the 20 percenters were at) take the class, go WOW, go way corps, go in some program…it basically means you should motivate people to do whatever TWI says is “doing the Word”. Talking about how I let TWI’s priorities outweigh my own scale of values is not to say my whole time of involvement was a totally bad experience. Life is too short to paint my experiences in such broad strokes. I met a lot of good, kind and honest people and had a lot of good times too (usually good times didn’t revolve around official TWI functions…like when some of us went up to a little bar in Albion not too far from Rome City. And I don’t know how many quarters I pumped into the Juke Box and waited and waited and waited for Glenn Frey’s “The Heat is On” to play. Finally, as we were about to leave, the song came on and our little group of wayfers went nuts on the dance floor. Yeah – good times…btw, I also learned there how to get the most bang for the buck abiding by the 2 drink limit rule – by “discovering” Long Island Iced Tea…yowzer the good times!!!). Honestly, it was the good people (some were in leadership positions) and sweet times that made life in TWI bearable. But it was the a$$holes (some who were in leadership positions) along with the corporate agendas and insidious machinations that made life in TWI almost intolerable.
  14. 1 point
    Yeah, waysider........I hear you. It all comes down to the difference between.......1) we and 2) me. Nothing "noble" in the twit-cult as an individual.......only groups: twigs, branches, WOWs, corps, staff, etc. The mandatory wearing of nametags....gave specificity to the GROUP you represented: (to name a few)....... 1) adv class grad, 2) wow or wow vet, 3) corps, 4) college division, or 5) staff. Cult indoctrination is only achieved by groupthink mentality.......that is why The Way, Inc. moved in herds, in groups. Group meetings, group weddings, group counseling, group confrontations, group readings of "Bedside Manners"......lest we forget, "the man of God's" time was valuable, therefore HE rarily had the time to meet with an individual one-on-on. And yes......wierwille said this to the corps when he was getting pushback on those group weddings in 1981. [Yet, wierwille had the time later that night to spend with an alcohol-enriched corps girl one-ON-one in his motor coach.] ........pppffffttt. The Lord looks on the heart of each one of us, individually. The Book of Psalms vividly displays the Lord's heart to you and me. .
  15. 1 point
    Well, my life's cause was and is as "noble" as I thought it to be. I will go to my grave saying exactly what I did and was trying to do my whole life with the message of God and Jesus Christ. I've done a lot of things, partnered with a lot of people - hell, today I pretty much did zip other than pray for some people which in and of itself is no small thing, to me, but I don't spend every day with the best efforts expended or doing them with the best or right people for that matter. My life is what it is - but I am a HELLA lot better for what I've done and learned than if I hadn't. In the big circle of life that sucks some ways and rocks in others - mostly it rocks. If I face my Creator at some point and He says I've been weighed and found wanting, I'll accept that - what else is there to do? In the meantime, I'm full speed ahead until you hear otherwise.
  16. 1 point
    Yeh, millet is one of those things I look at and think "now what can I do with this?"....it does have a huge positive affect on my gut, which I loved when I discovered it. I was born with a stomach ulcer condition, at least it's one of my earliest memories as a toddler - my stomach hurting terribly suddenly for no apparent reason - course I was all of about 3 at the time, so what did I know? Diagnosed as "gastritis" then as a peptic ulcer I had to be careful in the 50's and 60's what I ate and I learned calming and meditation techniques before I was 10, anything to deal with the ups and downs of the condition which could curl me up into a ball for hours when it acted up. I turned to drugs in my youth for the usual social reasons but found pot and methamphetamines took the edge off and a blend of the two could normalize me under almost any conditions. My friends from that era that are still around all have a story or two about how I stayed "high" all the time, and it wasn't until I was prayed for and healed following an auto accident, that I came around. Self-medication of the worst kind - and years later when my kids were getting into music I cried on the floor with them when Kurt Cobaine ("Nirvana") killed himself with a shotgun to the head...they really liked his music and I'd come to appreciate his unusual chords and lyrics and we'd connected on his music, but he suffered from stomach ulcers and god knows what other conditions and it was known the pain he was in sometimes and his use of heroin. I completely understood where it had taken him and and how he'd chosen to end it, anyone who's been down that path knows what it's like to just want the pain to stop and to know how to do it but you just don't want to do it anymore..... It made me so incredibly thankful for the deliverance God and Jesus Christ brought into my life and I told my kids about my own experience with it..........and millet? Millet still has a very settling affect on my stomach, of "well being"....I feel great when I eat it, and of course it's bio-nutrition is good for acting against stomach peptic ulcers.............I get why most people don't like it, but it's one of those foods that does so much good for me I had to figure out how to cook the dammed stuff so it would eat better. Funny how stuff can be so different between different people. I appreciate your candor and effort ms penworks. I told someone recently to check out your book first hand, and that you are entitled to your story and your insight - it's YOURS and provides a view from your vantage point that no one else has and that's important. There are things we may not agree on and I often find myself the odd man out with a lot of people because I am a fully feathered and nested Christian and my faith is for and with no one but God and myself, and those close to me. I value honesty. I find over and over through the years that whether others believe the same as I or I with them is less important than if we love life and live our lives to the best truth we know. I'm really glad we still share a friendship - the wife and I send our best.
  17. 1 point
    Hey kiddo! What's for lunch - millet and carrot - raisin salad? (I say that but I learned how to cook organically grown millet so it's not the consistency of drywall mud and given it's a gluten free "grain" I've played around with it, even working on trying some of it in my whole grain sourdough recipe's.) Your book fills in some blanks for me of the timeline in those early years when the Southeastern Way Home outreach was coming up and online into the Way Corps and the introduction of Martindale from Oklahoma into the mix. There's a couple things in there that open up the "inertia" of The Way. Given that we got involved with the Way within a year or two of the final version of PFAL going into the can in 1967 and he died in 1985, he taught, trained and transitioned his "team" of close followers in a short window of about 17-18 years during which a lot of the work was to memorialize his legacy and heritage into the brand of "The Way". Allowing for a couple years transitioning in (California and New York) and a couple years of ill health at the end restricting his ability to move and travel freely - there's a sweet spot of productivity of about 13-14 years. In that time frame we can see the main players and how they were positioned - and positioned themselves - to be part of VPW's core/Corps leadership. While VPW ran the show, he called the shots and we did it as he directed. He allowed for others to contribute yes but it was always within his aims and goals, his view of the future. He created the system of controls that allowed for a Martindale to take over and do as he willed, without recourse or oversight. Somehow he assumed that he would always keep a guiding hand on the rudder of influence - but when push came to shove everyone after him ran it exactly as he had, with complete autocratic authority within a theocracy and one man at the top who wore the title "God's Man for Our Day and Time". Peace n love!
  18. 1 point
    When new people come to GreaseSpot Café for the first time......and read "the other side of the story"........I'm sure, for some, that it is jolting. Surely, it wasn't that bad, was it? And, if you thought it was THAT bad.....why did you stay all those years? Why do you attack Dr. Wierwille's work and ministry? Those are valid questions.......yet, some refuse to stick around for further discussion or answers. They have their reasons for how twi changed their lives for the better and cite a couple of claims to the affirmative. BUT.......those who stick around for a lengthy discussion generally admit a list of things that they, too, disapproved of when it happened. We've seen these types of discussions time and again over the course of nearly 20 years. Just the FACTS........1) nearly 550 clergy have LEFT twi speaks volumes, 2) over 3,300 way corps have exited and moved on with their lives, 3) serial plagiarism of wierwille's "research" has been widely documented, 4) sexual abuse and predation by wierwille, martindale, don and howard testifies to twi's moral/spiritual corruption, 5) hoarding over $64 million of assets/investments in this non-profit organization (cough, cough), 6) books, articles and testimonies that detail the trappings of a cult, 7) the untoward secrecy that lies within and how twi treats its employees like slave-labor, 8) full-time corps fiasco......no debt-policy, no-pregnancy, 15-minute time management fill-in sheets, 9) favoritism to certain staff and corps.....while others got "retribution assignments," 10) AND.......then, you realize the twi-revisionist history in play that EVERY WIERWILLE STORY OR EVENT has been altered, fabricated or sensationalized for marketing wierwille's mystique image......there is this gut-wrenching awareness that you've been scammed by a man with pathological issues stemming from his childhood. Read Mrs. Wierwille's book......without the rose-colored glasses. Seems like, unwittingly......she reveals the myth behind the man. In all my years with twi......never saw wierwille walk by the spirit of God. NONE of the big 6 manifestations. Not one! Even his "speaking in tongues" was suspiciously repetitive. Ugh. .
  19. 1 point
    In terms of 1) inertia, 2) automatic pilot and 3) unconsciousness..........imo, those apply to the underlings, NOT the leadership. As socks stated above.... "The Way's culture was hierarchical, structured and controlled by a central authority. We would say "its the Word" but in practice the central authority of the organization as the Way Corps took prominence in the hierarchy, was Dr. Wierwille. There are many ways to do the same things, but in the Way we got stuck doing things one way - his way. His preferences and ideas drove the direction most of the major programs went in." Wierwille was the CENTRAL AUTHORITY OF TWI and he was not on autopilot! The doctrines of wierwille were instilled thru the subtle , gentle arm of the "re-education camps" [pfal classes]..........1) We have NO friends when it comes to "the word," 2) Your family, friends, co-workers and church leaders may forsake you....but this "word of God" will never forsake you, 3) If there are places in the Bible where this "word" is wrong, I will tell you, 4) The law of believing is the greatest law in the whole universe, 5) All the women in the kingdom belong to the king, 6) This "word" [that I teach] takes the place of the absent Christ, ......etc. etc. But the pfal-doctrine was not enough to sustain wierwille's authoritarian structure. Wierwille needed trained "instructors"........younger men and women, peers leading peers. Wierwille was the author, abuser and enforcer of The Way Corps program......the next generation "Gestapo police force" that followed orders from central command [Wierwille]. The corps would be sent forth as disciplinarians of wierwille's doctrines, not as disciples of Christ. Rigorous, manipulative exercises were deployed within the corps training to eliminate self-identity and reformat us to the collective will of our "masters." When dissidents arose, wierwille and his top lieutenants quickly spotted the threat(s) and major confrontation erupted.....much of it, for public consumption. Isolation. Immersion. Intimidation. Indoctrination. Corps were induced with the poison of wierwille's psycho-babble and pathologies: wierwille's claim of snow-covered pumps on a sunny day to sanction his God-given calling lock box secrecy, sexual favors to the man of god was a woman's gift of servitude hot-blooded, vein-popping confrontations to corps.......yet, no devil spirit cast out years of youth......talent, labor, money......stolen to prop up wierwille's bankrupt soul in the end......wierwille "wished" he would have been the man he knew to be ---- ppfffttt Rather than go down this road of "inertia"...........might I suggest the words of DWBH on page 1 of this thread. ~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~ "I left the TWIt gulag in December, 1986 after 16 years in the cesspool. I "graduated" from the Way corpse in August, 1976. I was in that thing Johnny the drunk Townsend called the Yak Twig after Chairman Geer the bus driver destroyed TWIt with his putsch paper about some legendary, supposedly benevolent "patriarch" who was put one step above Saul of Tarsus as this man-o-gawd (MOG) for this our day and time and hour and minute and nanosecond. I bought that purulent horse manure too, UNTIL I returned to your little mud hole in new Knoxville. I was on staff there from 1979-1986, when I left. That's where the truth and FACTS regarding dictor paul wierwille and his cult of perverted personality disorders began staring me in the face. Slowly but relentlessly those FACTS were oozing from the belly of that beast daily. The cognitive dissonance and abject immorality of what dictor and his boyz in da hoods were doing was horrifying. Truly and wildly against everything our Lord Christ stands for today. Psychopatholigical, alcohol-driven madness which literally killed innocents and drove a significant number of others to suicide! ALL in the name of "God's rightly divided Word" lived "in the renewed mind in manifestation" with complete and total allegiance to the MOG, "The Teacher", wayfers' "Father in the Word". Unlike you de Liar, I did not bury my head or heart in that TWIt toilet. It did not take me 28 years of blatant foot-kissing and personal compromise to realize that something IS very rotten in TWItville, Ohio! So wrong that, no authentic Christian could ever in good conscience before the Lord stay there and continue to poison the waters of life for the genuine Christians who wanted just to love God and serve the bread of life to those in need. And yet, here you are in 2016 agreeing to preside over that fraud of a minus-tray as if nothing bad enough ever happened that you must repent of before God and His Church, and ask for forgiveness from BOTH! That should be your number one task. But, I'm sure YOU don't "see the need" to do that, because you'd never agree to be pwesident if you even hinted at doing this right thing. This after 28 years at the vortex of sin and spiritual illness that your precious headquarters continues to live and promote. That means you were there during dem fawg years. That means you signed da forehead's loyalty oath. That means you went through and SUPPORTED, the homo purges, the ending of the ROA and the WOW program due to "homo infiltration". The screaming, spit-filled propaganda and hate speech against all us possessed cop-outs, non-stop every day for years. The public humiliation and destruction of ANY & ALL opposition or perceived "rebellion" against his MOGship. The incredible fascist, neo-Nazi malignant paranoid narcissism which eventually threw out any bible and replaced it with "genuine spiritual suspicion" as the main rule of "faith and practice". The "no debt" lunacy. The fun enforcement of "mark and avoid". Taking the "prevailing word" and locking it up behind the newly constructed walls of Zion that you morons consented to. The remake of dictor's PFAL into an even more incoherently insane WAP class. The pathetic Way Disciples program to replace WOWs. The overt and persistent pathological serial rape and sexual assault that Da Forehead's perverted "father in the word" taught the boy to do so well, and with rabid enthusiasm. And, your pal Ros-a-lie also participated in enthusiastically as well with dictor paul himself, and Howard and Don, and literally scores of other MOGs including members of my corpse which she was in-rez with when she began in the Family Corpse II in August, 1975! Male and female Monsieur de Liar! Ask Ms. Lombardi-Martindale about that! Denial. Obfuscation. Outright pathological lying. Blame shifting and finger pointing is what you've been taught to accept and demand. That's what you accept with your revisionist history of Da Forehead's two "settled" serial rape and sexual assault charges, along with Rosie's whitewashed version of her own admissions to the criminal sexual behavior of the Da forehead and others that are in the sealed settlement documents. If you know all this after 28 years and you're still there, my de Liar moniker fits you quite well Monsieur! And, you'll wear it with PRIDE I'm sure. Unlike the far more kind Skyrider, I'm not wasting one nanosecond of my Christian prayer life on you, or any of the rest of you hypocritical, whited sepulchers. You are anti(against)-Christ in words and works. You are vain babblers, ever learning yet never coming to the knowledge of the truth. You are an insult to the Lord who bought you. You are a false teacher. You and your rosie suffer from the root of all evil.....the love of money. You preach for filthy lucre's sake. You plagiarize the plagiarizers. You bow your knee to Baal. You are anathema to the Lord Jesus Christ and His Heavenly Father. You have been weighed in the balances and found wanting. Your "ministry" is a sham and a fraud. You serve the god of this world. REPENT! Ask God for forgiveness and apologize to those whom you have despitefully used. You have raped and plundered The Good Shepherd's precious flock. Their blood is on your hands. You cannot fool God! You cannot hide from the Righteous Judge either. You return to your own vomit, day after day, year after year. The blood of the righteous which you have shed screams through the ground against you. My only prayer for you is, "May the Lord have mercy upon your souls."
  20. 1 point
    Autopilot is something humans do without conscious thought. That's what habits are. Much of what we do every day is done without conscious thought. 1.autopilot - a cognitive state in which you act without self-awareness; "she went about her chores on automatic pilot"; "too much of the writing seems to have been done on automatic pilot"; "she talked and he dozed and my mind went on autopilot" automatic pilot unconsciousness - a state lacking normal awareness of the self or environment
  21. 1 point
    A great point there, Socks…you using the word “inertia” reminded me of something I found on Wikipedia regarding mindset “A mindset may be so firmly established that it creates a powerful incentive within these people or groups to continue to adopt or accept prior behaviors, choices, or tools. The latter phenomenon is also sometimes described as mental inertia, "groupthink", and it is often difficult to counteract its effects upon analysis and decision making processes.” I heard something on the news the other day about an investigation left on autopilot…This idea fascinated me so I found a definition of autopilot "The literal meaning of autopilot is a device that steers a ship, plane, or spacecraft by itself, without a person. However, the expression “on autopilot” has developed a different meaning. Here are some typical uses of the expression “on autopilot,” which should make its meaning clear: He wasn’t thinking very hard, he just did his job on autopilot. Instead of driving to school my brain was on autopilot, and I started driving to work! By the third week of her campaign for mayor, Quimby was making all of her speeches on autopilot. As you can tell from the examples above, to do something on autopilot means to do it without focusing on it, without thinking about what is happening." In a sense I can think of a certain mindset as being on autopilot. Where I’m doing something, going through the motions without really thinking about it. I agree with you - things could change – but that depends on if top leadership is willing to make the effort to change the direction of the existing mental inertia. That's a pretty tall order.
  22. 1 point
    It's good to see the different backgrounds and experiences we all brought to "The Word" of God. I had and have little tolerance for what I call "imperial entanglements". Raised Roman Catholic and well educated in the religion I dropped all but the ideas and some of the beliefs by the age of 18. Straight forward teaching and reading in and from the Bible brought me back to Christ and a consideration of the Biblical history of mankind as more than a myth. So I went from a faith defined by ritual and tradition to a faith defined by relationship and the immediacy of that relationship's experience. For the time I was in the Way I deliberately accepted what we were doing as something that I was willing to try so I could see where it would go. I already knew from my first couple years of rebirth into the Christian faith I didn't need another church or another Pope or another set of rules and regs. I bought into the work so that I could see if we could succeed with teaching and music, and the overall vision of "WOW", and reaching people with Christ and the teaching of the Bible. So I never gave up my family relationships, we were always in touch and I considered them about the same as I always had and I was fortunate that they loved me and cared about what I wanted to do. I never felt that VPW's "Way Family" culture he built worked. I got what we were trying to do and I was part of it for several years but it suffered from a form of stasis, caused by how it chose to grow. Ironic, yes but not uncommon in how organizations grow. If an organization tries to dig itself in and establish a rigid culture it can implode while exploding. Messy. The Way's culture was hierarchical, structured and controlled by a central authority. We would say "its the Word" but in practice the central authority of the organization as the Way Corps took prominence in the hierarchy, was Dr. Wierwille. There are many ways to do the same things, but in the Way we got stuck doing things one way - his way. His preferences and ideas drove the direction most of the major programs went in. That approach continued with Craig and proceeded to fail in lesser hands as it became possible for us to look over several years and see how it all worked out. It could change, even today with De Lisle or whoever's in charge - but inertia's preeeeeeetty well got them going in a set direction and way of doing things so I wouldn't hold my breath. Then again, anything can happen. It's up to them. I'm sure if they made some cosmetic changes, moved the furniture around a little and said some nice things, show PFAL a few times again, there'd be some people flocking back.
  23. 1 point
  24. 1 point
    Great posts! Here’s a few thoughts I had after reading them. I think I learned more about honesty and empathy from my Mom & Dad than I ever did from wierwille. And my parents taught me that stuff – not by lectures or sermons on how to be a good Christian – but by how they lived their lives in raising me and my siblings. As a parent myself – now looking back on my folks – I believe I draw some inspiration of self-sacrifice for my kids by recalling how they would be supportive of our interests and dreams – not only financially – but even in just talking with us about all that stuff. That is a crazy interesting thing about parenthood – there’s someone who is a part of me – yet separate from me – who may have some totally different hopes and dreams than me…fascinating! I didn’t always feel that way about my parents. I’ve shared this before on another thread cults: the art of deception ...While growing up I was influenced by the counterculture of the 60s – there formed a gap between me and my parents. When the glue of family ties is weakened we may be attracted to a group that seems to satisfy our sense of belonging. But after being in TWI for some 12 years – I became disillusioned with them – and it took me some time to figure out why. Basically it amounts to there being nothing like the real thing when it comes to family ties - even as imperfect as they may be and as hurtful as they may be at times - there is a real connection there. Blood is thicker than water as the expression goes. In general, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with groups (churches, organizations, friends, etc.) that help you see the value in life or even just help you cope with life. I think my weak family ties made me vulnerable – set me up as a target – for the leader of a pseudo-family. Yes, wierwille in all his narcissistic glory was the “patriarch” of this pseudo-family. His pet saying of “I have no friends when it comes to the word” speaks volumes about his exaggerated feeling of self-importance and his lack of empathy to how others felt. wierwille’s pet dictum really covers it all – "I have no friends - or ties to an earthly family for that matter - when it comes to the word"…really ? where does it say that in the Bible? Chapter and verse please. The twisted version of self-sacrifice I learned during my 12 year involvement with TWI was that I was expected to put the priorities of The Way International ahead of everything else in my life. Actual family ties you may have are subjugated by the “reality of your spiritual family” (contrary to the bogus claim on the back of the PFAL sign up card “develops more harmony in the home”). . it's a variation of the previously mentioned dictum: don’t let anyone – not even your earthly family come between you and your spiritual family of The Way International.... how many marriages, families and friends were split up because a TWI follower was "taking a stand on the word"? and you know there were a lot of situations where upper leadership put the pressure on folks to make a choice between staying with The Way International or staying with their spouse who didn't see eye to eye with upper leadership. Sure glad I left that mess. In my ever evolving opinion, when it comes to family stuff - I see in the Bible a lot of stuff about reconciliation ( the prodigal son for example...or better yet, how about seeing reconciliation as having a higher priority than even worship in Matthew 5:23, 24 ) . I believe having patience, being supportive...having forgiveness, and empathy towards others...especially family members is a big deal.
  25. 1 point
    Amen to that. It all makes me think that he did go very out of bounds with his pre occupation with his own family and trying to build a "family" of Way Corps and followers close to himself. VPW had a very specific belief that it was necessary for his family to all be together behind him and actively supporting what he was doing for it to succeed. He had gotten son Don to come back and work with him and everyone was required to "stand" with his ministry for it to succeed and live on. He spoke about this more in the last 70's, around 79, 80, 81 and at Camp Gunnison around 1980 with the Way Corps gathered there. He talked a lot to the 4th Corps about his German heritage and history and began the process of memorializing the Weirwille history to illustrate the underpinnings of his own life and ministry's birth. I hesitate to label people narcissists as so much of narcissism is found in normal behaviors but when it becomes as complex and pervasive as his it's probably warranted, especially his view of failure. Anything that failed was nearly ALWAYS someone else's fault and in the end of his life the myth was built that his very death was caused by others he claimed deserted him. Going back into years of exposure to him I saw him repeatedly struggle to work in difficult circumstances - contrary to the tough-guy-rebel personae he put out he would crumble into a teary mess if some small detail was out of order, complain that "no one believed him" while surrounded by 100's of people anxiously hanging on his every word. Any number of minor physical impedances would throw him into a screaming tirade blaming devil spirits, unbelief, even accusing those who worked endless hours to support his teaching ministry of outright colluding to destroy him. Then an hour later, he'd be all smiles - "oh, you're not still made at me are you??" he'd coo....and like the abusive parent cuddling the child they'd slapped around he'd say "Aww, I love you, I only get mad at you cause I want the best for you! hahawhaw!"...... That's not a healthy family environment, trying desparetly to please him, never knowing when Daddy's going to blow a fuse and throw something. Now - VPW never got physical at any time of his life, I want to make that clear, he never hit anyone or anything like that, that I ever saw and I don't want to give that impression or imply that - but the dynamics of the power-authority-role he used was classic manipulation. Those he mentored the closest all picked that up too - Like LCM and others, grown men, some former athletes, fine specimens, absolutely going ballistic if someone sneezed during a teaching they did, or god forbid got there 5 minutes late. They'd find crooked chairs, coffee too cold or too hot, posters they didn't like, lighting too bright, too dim, a tie out of place, a WOW pin on the wrong side, a Holy Spirit dove missing, no glass of water at the podium, too many mints in the bowl, not enough, flowers not right, etc. etc. etc. and any number of reasons that their strength was sapped, concentration ruined and their spiritual armor under violent attack - if the AC went on during their teaching. ( the hum!!! the hum!!!!! ) Self-absorbed "ministers" of their own egos....Far from being tough, single minded and ready for anything and equal to anything as "More than Conquerors", like him they were frail and weak, beaten by their own egos - and for the biggest and loudest of his mentors, pride did come before their falls. It's so telling that VPW rejected his own family and those closest to him at the end of his life...."No friends when it comes to the WORD!!!".....hell, he didn't let anyone be his friend for long. I do think in his mind he was acting out a great drama of his own manufacture.
  26. 1 point
    Hi - couple thoughts... i Timothy 5 gives some good broad strokes as to how we should treat each other in the church - it starts out with this guidance... "Do not rebuke an older man harshly, but exhort him as if he were your father. Treat younger men as brothers, 2 older women as mothers, and younger women as sisters, with absolute purity. When you say honor the "fathers" you seem to be talking about elders in the church - <quote> "Those fathers in the faith who have affected our lives in some positive way, should be honored..." I'd point you to Timothy 5 for that as a good starting point. And the answer is yes but more importantly and this is very important - to not think of ourselves (or anyone else) more highly than we should - Romans 12:3: For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you. If your point is to ask the question, "How are you at honoring Dr. Weirwille who taught the Bible in PFAL", I can only answer for myself but I would also advise others accordingly in regards to anyone who teaches them anything ESPECIALLY THOSE WHO TEACH THE BIBLE thusly: When it comes to God, the Bible and the things of God which includes first and foremost His people, show great respect and honor to God first, His son Jesus Christ His "logos" as well as the Bible and to everyone, especially my brethren in Christ and those who dedicate themselves to God and the care of His people. Remember too that the commandment of promise, to honor our mothers and fathers, places parents who raise their children in the faith of God as second in the chain of authority - first God, then parents then others. Parental authority can include others too but let's not muddy the waters to say it isn't first intended as a familial parent-child relationship which defines any aspect of a similar relationship of authority. The exercise for many people is to NOT OVER - HONOR those who teach and care for the church. Just as a child can become over dependent on a parent and never become an individual even when they are taught and raised to become such, a member of the church can become reliant on someone else to lead them and decide for them and in so doing subvert God's desire to have a living growing relationship with them. In the same way a "father or mother" can deliberately create conditions that keep their children dependent on them, and unable to live and contribute as an individual. One of Dr. Weirwille's weaknesses was his own need to be accepted and affirmed. I would content that while many of his programs and ideas were good, many of them had components to keep the participants close to home, tied to his chain of command and needing to continually validate his authority and actions. I say that having been a participant in most if not all of The Way's classes, courses, programs and roles. He needed everyone to come in once a year or more so that he could keep the hub of everyone's lives in and at the Way Nash in Ohio. Rather than train, develop and release leaders to the work of God and Christ, he built a network of paid and volunteer members and participants who answered through a chain of command to himself. Of course it grew out of that and to a great degree the failure of the organization of the Way as a functional business and means of outreach for the original teaching ministry it was based on and grew from was due to it being built to work with one man, one authority at the center. When that one man/central authority broke down as it always will, it failed. So I have good memories of the Farm, the pond, the woods, many of the people and he various campuses and places where we worked and spent time, and I do revere God's Word. I would not teach what's in PFAL the same way, and I'd change some of the material based on how I understand the texts and theory it's based on. So I can honor Dr. Weirwille's teaching of the Bible but because he built so much of the Way around himself, his family, his heritage and his history I saw him really hold the whole thing back. People celebrate it today and say "look at what he did" and I'll credit that to an extent but knowing what I do today I'm not going to lead my own efforts with "Dr. Weirwille, The Teacher", because it adds unnecessary baggage to the message of Christ which I personally saw act as an anchor to the long term effort. Some say his unique blend of rebellious and angry personality served a greater purpose. I think it kept him inward faced, in Ohio where he built his ministry in his own likeness. In the same way, people then might say "WELL! You sure did get real smart didn't you? Boy, you sure did get smart!" sarcastically. And my answer to that is - I was 18, 20, 25 then - did I get smarter in the last 50 years?.....YOU BET YOUR ASS I DID. PEACE!
  27. 1 point
    Hi Raymo and welcome to Grease Spot. Hope you stick around and check some things out further. I don’t mean to rain on your parade but thinking about my time of involvement in TWI, I now look at PFAL, and for that matter the WOW program, the Way Corpse program and even wierwille himself in a totally different light. While I will say I’ve learned some good stuff about the Bible and met many good people in TWI, it is a very troubling thing to consider the fact that wierwille unabashedly plagiarized the material in PFAL. That makes him a thief and a liar. Why did he do that? Maybe to use PFAL as bait to lure people into the bondage of his ministry. The Bible speaks of false teachers wierwille’s plagiarism and why he did it so flagrantly makes me think of counterfeit money. Besides the fact that counterfeiting money is a crime, think of how it defrauds the recipient of something valuable - i.e. buying a genuine Rolex watch with counterfeit money...I don't think it's too far fetched to say that wierwille “bought” the respect and allegiance of folks by passing off PFAL as his own work. You may be interested in a few other threads that tell the real TRUTH about wierwille: The Way Living in Wonderland The wierwille legacy interview with Ralph D about wierwille & plagiarism
  28. 1 point
    [I'm ready to reply to a little more. Let's see.....] [/b] "It always bothered me the title bestowed on VPW. The father in the word was damn near blasphemy! God is our Father, not VPW." [I never liked that one, and never used that one. vpw himself started that one as well as calling himself "The Teacher." (I didn't use that one, either.) vpw claimed that whoever spoke to you so you got saved was your "father in the word" (supposedly based on I Corinthians 4:15 "15 For though ye have ten thousand instructers in Christ, yet have ye not many fathers: for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel." After that, somehow, he changed that into HIMSELF, possibly by claiming it wasn't them, but whoever spoke to THEM and so on, with the chain ending with himself. I know there were still people speaking to that effect years after vpw died. If Ephesians 4:6 is correct in us being in unity in one Father, then claiming vpw or someone else is that (besides an obvious male parent) disunites us away from One God.] "This among other things let the fox into the henhouse so to speak. The I can sleep with any number of women I want was another one. Even if God hadn't changed, old testament people having multiple wives, that's fine, but they weren't teaching that NOR were they taking in multiple wives. The sex club was out of bounds for anything God ever said was ok. " ["Technically, all the women in the kingdom belonged to the king." vpw said that in pfal, but there was NO verse quoted for it, since the OT Law said the opposite. Then vpw quietly equated himself with "the king." vpw was trying to get people OK with that for a long time. In the 60s, when he hijacked the hippies, he'd gone to Haight-Ashbury looking for Christian hippies because he thought he'd found Christians who were ok with orgies. He pestered J1m D00p for specifics about what it was like to attend an orgy. (Jim had dropped in on one briefly, years before, and was thankful to be able to avoid them since then.) vpw then went on to tell JIm that orgies were OK with God. He said it was "available", and his spin on I Corinthians 7:1 ("Now concerning the things whereof ye wrote unto me: It is good for a man not to touch a woman.") was that it meant that God permitted a man touching a woman because it said "good" but not "best", so vpw said that meant God was ok with it. Obviously, the rest of the chapter said otherwise, but what's another lie by that point? vpw spent years setting up the framework that allowed him to maximize the chances to molest and/or rape godly women. Yes, others were needed to keep that going, and some also partook of it.] "The homophobia and purging after VPW died is also against God's Word. NO one has any scripture saying you kick "sinners" out to the curb. That goes against everything Jesus did and taught his disciples to do and nowhere does God allow that. There is a specific instance where God says to hand someone over to the adversary. But, if that's what they were justifying what did upon they were dead wrong. That scripture deals with disruptive people who are inside causing trouble and being disruptive to the body. That's not why they were throwing people out on their foot. Tbey were throwing anyone out who dared to question them about anything. " [ All the "reasons" were PRETEXTS. They kicked out anyone who was inconvenient- which is what vpw did first. They followed suit, and kicked out anyone who made waves or looked like they MIGHT make waves. I agree with you both on what they did and why what they did was wrong.]
  29. 1 point
    Sure, my pleasure. : ) There are certainly "dispensations" in the Bible. Administrations, "oikonomia" deal with "house-law". How things are done, engaged with, managed, carried out, between God and man. That's changed over time, since Genesis. Those periods of time and what went on in them are important to understand if we want to get a real handle on our own relationship with God and gain an understanding of our Creator and Father. It's much more than just dates on a calendar of course. There are covenants agreements, between God and man during these times and those provide the structure to how things are done between us. There's consistencies too of course. God's mercy and grace are consistent themes, God's justice. I'm now a bona fide part of God's family, a fully vested child of the Creator. I WAS a Gentile before that, as far as the Old Covenant pre-Christ arrangement and in those administrations God dealt with the other nations of the world differently than with Israel and the bloodline of believers. I can see the transitional phase out - phase in, in Acts during their first Council at which they determined that the new Gentile converts would not be required to become fully invested in Jewish observance of their traditions and laws. They were given a broad encouragement to steer clear of pagan practices and sexual promiscuity and basically live the faith of Christ. Etc. It's easy to see that some of the disciples viewed their faith through their heritage and wanted to maintain that. It was being revealed however that the new identity of God's people would no longer by Israel or the 12 Tribes, but rather this new "church" of all those who followed Christ and accepted salvation by grace. So, first the exegetical work and then the hermeneutics, right? And it's at the hermeneutical stage that this becomes very important because teaching the doctrine of salvation in Christ doesn't have any additional requirements or attachments, it's by grace - and a very simple way to understand that is from the Gentile's perspective, since we, I, wasn't part of the Abrahamic bloodline and would not come into the faith with any of the expectations of a Jew. Everything past and everything coming is clearly understood for me today through Christ, all things are of and will be in Christ. Which is pretty much what the N.T. teaches - when I share salvation therefore I never take the approach that PFAL or Dr. Wierwille did, as if I need to square up some previously misunderstood division of the "administrations". The important part right now is a relatively simple message that spans history in a snapshot of events. The topic of "sin" though - have to get back to that, I guess. Romans 5 covers most of it, for me. A lot of it anyway.
  30. 1 point
    Mike B, [You probably know that this messageboard (the GSC) exists "to tell the other side of the story." There's differences of opinions, and that's refreshing after the mental confines of parroting whatever twi insisted was the party line. So, there's Christians here (like me), and non-Christians, both of many varieties. I'm sure opinions about me from off this site sound like they're talking about 2 different people or more, depending on what the speakers care about. I'm "yes" on the Bible, but "no" on anything twi that doesn't connect to it, and I care about the truth, not making anyone happy. (That's enough to make friends and enemies for exactly the same reasons.) So, please keep in mind that I've done my best to try to learn what was true in twi, what was rumor, and so on, regardless of whether I WANTED to believe it or not. It's with that in mind that I reply to you, agreeing on some points and disagreeing on others. ] [b[I agree with this:]]/b] "Until the Way leadership repents and apologizes for it's sins, sins either by commission or omission, then I will have nothing more to do with them. " [I'll go further and say we're separated for life because they will never change twi enough to make it something I'd seriously consider rejoining.] "I believe Dr. Weirwille did teach the Truth to the best of his ability and certainly challenged each of us to prove the scriptures for ourselves." [I think we were told to prove the Scriptures for ourselves, and that is correct and important. Unfortunately, I'm convinced- beyond any reasonable doubt- that wierwille ripped off the teaching styles and materials of others, and simply re-presented THEIR work, claiming it was his own. It doesn't appear that wierwille ever actually BELIEVED the Bible. In fact, he admitted that he'd completed his entire education for ministry, and had already begun his first year as a minister, before he'd ever believed the Bible was the Word of God. Removing that as a motive, it seems that he began as a minister because he could make a good presentation and make a comfortable living and get respect for doing it. All "his" best work can be traced directly to specific authors and teachers. vpw did that and did his best to make us think that it was all the results of HIS study and communication with God Almighty and nothing else. (He said he used the Bible as his textbook and workbook, period.) He made many claims, all designed to make it look like he had a special connection with God Almighty while hiding his sources of information. PRIVATELY, he said he'd heard from God, and claimed God gave him instructions all the time. All of that having been said, I think we were actually taught a lot of truth DESPITE THAT. It was meant to ensnare us- and sometimes it did- but it was nevertheless TAUGHT.] " He said the Way never makes anybody leave, just anybody." [He also said, of "the Zero Corps" that he "gave them the privilege of leaving." vpw was not above kicking people out PRIVATELY while claiming he NEVER did it. Yes, he was a hypocrite- moreso than most people, and unapologetic about it.] "Well, the homophobic, self righteous bastard that followed him certainly dispelled that myth." [The thing is, wierwille KNEW he was conning us, so he knew where to draw the line and when to silence the microphone. He trained lcm, making him two-fold the child of hell that he himself was. lcm was convinced vpw was serving God- so he didn't know it was all a con and that there was a time to shut up. Periodically, with the corps- and thus in private- vpw kicked out all of a corps class, then turn around and offer to let them return if they rededicated themselves to twi. This almost always worked, and vpw knew he could count on those drones that stayed. Later, lcm tried the same thing with people who were NOT the corps- and this resulted in people walking away and not looking back. Yes, lcm was homophobic and self-righteous.... He was partly homophobic because he was a jock in college, and went straight from there into twi leadership full-time. He learned NOTHING in twi to dispel his attitudes, so they remained at a jock level. vpw's training of him never addressed that. It DID address self-righteousness. If anything, vpw MADE lcm self-righteous. vpw modeled the opposite of humility, and taught lcm accordingly. lcm was as much a victim of vpw as anyone else- which is why he made victims of others. Ever heard how abuse survivors often abuse others later in life? This worked the same way. vpw personally picked lcm. He did not choose him for any competency. He chose lcm because lcm never questioned vpw, but instead would have driven off a cliff at vpw's instruction. It's an awful reason to pick the leader of a Christian organization, but vpw gave that as his reason when asked once. Yes, lcm ruined many lives and has a LOT to answer for, and never went to prison despite committing crimes. However, that's NOT the whole story, so I feel a little bad for him among all this. Please consider that.] "I had a very long talk with Wanda Weirwille right after everything came out about the sex scenes. She openly admitted it was happening, unlike any of those in leadership positions. I told her I care about TWI but I can't stand in support of what leadership was doing behind closed doors. Teaching one thing and doing another is NOT okay, it's hypocritical at best and insidious. Letting the Devil in even a little bit means you've lost any legitimacy you might have ever had. " [I agree fully. vpw did it first, and taught lcm to do it. This does NOT EXCUSE lcm for doing it, he had free will and chose to do what he did. twi's "lockbox" doctrine- THEIR name, not mine- said to keep this sort of thing hush-hush, so vpw's victims were often silenced early on without further coercion. lcm participated fully in this, and bears responsibility for his own actions regardless of who taught him.] "I'm sorry but I don't see anywhere in the Word that it's ok to lead a double life, nor is it ok to yell at and berate people. Being especially good to those of the household of faith means you have to actually BE that! What Martindale did and the rest of them, and yes, even VPW is not something that is tolerable in least sense. Excusing it is even worse." [There's some who claim it's evil for us to expose what vpw and lcm did- but those same people are not outraged that they did it. To them, it's worse to expose vpw as a plagiarizing rapist who drugged women than for him to have drugged and raped the women. I'm NOT exaggerating.] "I entered the Way when I was completely lost. I was healed by the Word. I thought we were surrounded by good men and women. I never put my faith in man, my faith is and always remained having my faith in God. " [I'm with you there, but some people are not, and that's ok. They're free to disagree, and we ALL have a "right to be wrong". We all bear responsibility for our decisions, and, frankly, I prefer it that way.] " I believe we were taught more Truth than any other organization on the planet, and I still believe that to be true. " [Due to vpw plagiarizing some quality Christians, I believe we were taught some Truth while in twi, but not everything we were taught there was Truth or truth. Furthermore, there's plenty of quality Christians who've never heard of twi, vpw, or anyone connected with twi. vpw did his best to put forth that himself was some great one, that ALL the quality teachings he had were from him, and that all Christians everywhere else were flawed and INFERIOR to twi Christians. I believe all of that was error- to say the least. The idea that God wasn't relying solely on a plagiarizing rapist to get things done is rather comforting- and rather sensible, IMHO.] "There were faults that crept in, having superiority complexes for a start, perpetuated over and over again, especially by Craig Martindale. Of course VPW did that as well, anyone born again is of the household of faith, not those just in the Way." [For twi, that's awfully subversive. ;) Christians being equal is repugnant in twi and to twi. Yes, arrogance and superiority was taught in twi as a matter of course, and the top cadre- with vpw and lcm leading- were generally the worst at it.] I'll reply to the rest later, but that's plenty for now. I hope you're well and are in touch with some Christians who won't do to you what twi did to us.
  31. 1 point
    Hello, Mike Barbour. God bless you. I'm sure a lot of us are interested in what you wrote. Unfortunately, you submitted a "text-block" - a huge block of text that is hard to read comfortably. As a public service, I'm going to repost what you wrote, adding ONLY the spaces, so that we can read what you wrote comfortably. I will NOT change ONE WORD of your text-block. Ok, here goes. Mike Barbour posted (above) the following....... ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Until the Way leadership repents and apologizes for it's sins, sins either by commission or omission, then I will have nothing more to do with them. I believe Dr. Weirwille did teach the Truth to the best of his ability and certainly challenged each of us to prove the scriptures for ourselves. He said the Way never makes anybody leave, just anybody. Well, the homophobic, self righteous bastard that followed him certainly dispelled that myth. I had a very long talk with Wanda Weirwille right after everything came out about the sex scenes. She openly admitted it was happening, unlike any of those in leadership positions. I told her I care about TWI but I can't stand in support of what leadership was doing behind closed doors. Teaching one thing and doing another is NOT okay, it's hypocritical at best and insidious. Letting the Devil in even a little bit means you've lost any legitimacy you might have ever had. I'm sorry but I don't see anywhere in the Word that it's ok to lead a double life, nor is it ok to yell at and berate people. Being especially good to those of the household of faith means you have to actually BE that! What Martindale did and the rest of them, and yes, even VPW is not something that is tolerable in least sense. Excusing it is even worse. I entered the Way when I was completely lost. I was healed by the Word. I thought we were surrounded by good men and women. I never put my faith in man, my faith is and always remained having my faith in God. I believe we were taught more Truth than any other organization on the planet, and I still believe that to be true. There were faults that crept in, having superiority complexes for a start, perpetuated over and over again, especially by Craig Martindale. Of course VPW did that as well, anyone born again is of the household of faith, not those just in the Way. It always bothered me the title bestowed on VPW. The father in the word was damn near blasphemy! God is our Father, not VPW. This among other things let the fox into the henhouse so to speak. The I can sleep with any number of women I want was another one. Even if God hadn't changed, old testament people having multiple wives, that's fine, but they weren't teaching that NOR were they taking in multiple wives. The sex club was out of bounds for anything God ever said was ok. The homophobia and purging after VPW died is also against God's Word. NO one has any scripture saying you kick "sinners" out to the curb. That goes against everything Jesus did and taught his disciples to do and nowhere does God allow that. There is a specific instance where God says to hand someone over to the adversary. But, if that's what they were justifying what did upon they were dead wrong. That scripture deals with disruptive people who are inside causing trouble and being disruptive to the body. That's not why they were throwing people out on their foot. Tbey were throwing anyone out who dared to question them about anything. Or who they believed were somehow a threat, like gay people, who news flash, are usually some of the least troublesome people you'd ever meet. I don't know their heads got so big they thought they were doing God's work. Except as I said, you give the Devil an inch and he will steal, kill and destroy everything of God. You can't serve two masters. You can claim to be serving one, but if you're serving the other then you're not serving one. You can't teach people one thing and do another and call yourself serving God. Mistakes and sins can be forgiven, but purposely lying and covering up a double life doesn't leave time to serve God. Now, if they had come out and said this is what we are doing and here is what God says about and why it's ok, and research had been done proving they are living a life decent and in order according to God's Word, then we would have had a starting point to start figuring out if they were telling us Truth. But, of course they couldn't, so they chose to hide it behind closed doors until men and women decided enough already, and brought their double lives to light. Then, OMG, they had to purge people because God forbid anyone stand up to them with doctrine! Like John Shoengeit (spelling?) did with his research paper during a time the Research Ministry was, gasp, suspended. You can't call yourself one thing and refuse to do it. Martindale decided then we had to get back to basics. Basic what? Idolatry? Polishing the pedestal VPW was placed on? Basic what exactly? Isn't it basic scripture you were using to sleep with multiple women? Oh, NO, of course it wasn't. So how dare someone research to see if it's ok to be unfaithful to your wife/husband?! Then get thrown on his foot when his paper says, shocker, it's not ok. Anyone around during that time either knew it was happening or were part of it. So, anyone that remained after it was exposed was either supporting it directly or indirectly. I went one step further and recalled scripture not to believe anything against an elder except in the case of 2 or 3 witnesses. I got multiple witnesses before I ever saw Wanda Weirwille. So, until leadership apologizes for the wrong they did or supported and takes responsibility for the blatantly false doctrine perpetuated by all the leaders, our only Father being God, anyone born again in the household of faith etc. I just will support doctrinal and practical errors. They truly do owe a huge apology to everyone they hurt or continue to hurt because we all were hungry for the Truth, but the double lives and serving Satan at the head by perpetuating outright lies and not being repentent when confronted with the Truth, well, we are left with the only option left to us, hand them over to the adversary and walk away. Heartbroken and weeping, but necessary because God doesn't allow leaders and elders to live double lives and He is clear on what we are to do. Confront them with the Truth and with witnesses. We did, and they marked us and threw us out. Newsflash for them, they are the ones who were marked and thrown out, not us. It is more difficult to serve God now but God never said I'll make it simple and keep a ministry walking on my Word for you to have and support you. So, we do what we can and believe God regardless. But, new presidents with old ways are still unacceptable and if they stood on the Word, they can not stand with ministry committing blashphemy, or unapologetic for trying to destroy people's lives who were doing the right thing. I believe God taught Dr. Weirwille and I believe what he taught was mostly right, and taught with his understanding at the time. I don't know that anyone will ever be 100% right because we do not have perfect originals to go by. But, by revelation and a willingness to work the Word God can show us many things. Knowledge puffeth up, and it certainly did in the Way. It seems that leads to corruption as well. I don't know at what point that started, but I do think it was later rather than sooner. All I know is I learned how to work the word for myself and gained a lot of knowledge, some was blatantly wrong but most was as close to the Truth as I think we will ever come. It is a real shame leadership lost any meekness or humility and decided to walk away from God en masse, and remove peoole en masse. With a few changes God would have still blessed it and us as a group, but Satan got his grubby little hands involved and ruined it for everyone. I'm not sure they will ever come back from that, because they are choosing arrogance over humility.
  32. 1 point
    Thank you! It's a learning exercise to write my thoughts out this way. Over the years I have notes, we all probably do on different things and it's fun to to write it out. For me it writes different than it speaks, and speaks different than it thinks, and it gets clarified in the process, if that makes sense. annio really said it all regarding the study of administrations in this original statement - " I think there is a lot more accurate continuity with the perspective that God is always interacting w/ His ppl (and often others) as the same covenanting Father, rather than thinking of Him primarily as a "boxer upper" of administrations..." "Administrations" aren't outlined in the Bible the way we try to outline them as a hierarchy with hard stops and starts and break points noted in the texts by the author. Rocky's noted that the Bible is a collection of stories, of books, and that's true. We can understand them as an entire story and narrative then with a beginning and end (page 1, page 200, last page, etc) but that's not the actual story - is it? That's the book. It came to us in the format of the writers and their times. I would always see it first as history, a historical view of mankind's story from the earliest creation to the future completion of God's purposes for it all, and it's all told from the human angle, our voice. Today everything has rolled up into Christ the Savior. As annio stated there's a flow of events between God and His creation, and the changes that occur within that. It's a much easier way to read the Bible and if it does indeed speak for itself it will as we read it and learn it. So while I might use the idea of labelling the more obvious segments of the history and learning what changes and what stays the same I haven't found any great value to nailing that down till it hurts. Like say, the debate over the ending of the era of the apostles and there being an end to the gifts of holy spirit life manifesting in tongues, prophecy, healing, etc. Clarifying it as a change or no-change in "administrations" doesn't really do anything to move the needle on the real question which is - what does it say happened and does it say anywhere or read in the story we see that anyone written about declared an end to it, or for that matter even a start? And the answer I think is "no". So again, if I clear the table of the arguments over how many administrations can balance on the head of a goldfish, is there anything left and if so, what? And I figure, yes there is and it's.....etc. etc. We know the Bible didn't come to us as a textbook or manual. It does contain some things like that, Proverbs, Psalms, but they're not organized and cross referenced with footnotes as directed by God, they stand on their own word and order, as - is. So, it's not a textbook with an index, it doesn't start out "I the Lord God of all creation will now explain myself, my purposes and how this is all going to work. Let's start at the beginning. Remember there's maps and a glossary at the back of your set of manuals so make sure you have the current versions...." Nor does it lay out as a set of instructions - "Chapter 1 - What To Do Immediately After You're Born", or anything like that. As I grew up in the Way years, when I used to integrate these things into teachings people would usually get it and sometimes I could almost see light bulbs going off in our heads, first the bulb then the soft glow of awareness. Kind of like being in a well lit bookstore, in the back around a table in a room with windows, on a sunny day. That's how if feels to me anyway. : ) It goes to a place where there's no fight or debate or struggle. Instead there's study, discussion, listening, learning and hopefully understanding. God gave me peace with Him through Christ, I enjoy it. Cheers!
  33. 1 point
    This book is an easy and enjoyable read. Written from the Methodist viewpoint, it addresses inerrancy and infallibility of the Bible (it is not), the assumption of many regarding verbal, plenary inspiration (Biblical Literalism Fundamentalists cling to and demand) of II Timothy 3:16, Genesis and it's writers, how reliable are the Gospel accounts and the sources of the Gospels, suffering, homosexuality, Canonization, science and Young Earth Creationists, and on and on. He does all this by discussing the various arguments and viewpoints in a respectful manner, and not from a Bully Pulpit. The Gospel Coalition disapproves of this book. I turned a friend of mine onto it, Ex-Way, and she finished it in 5 days (390 pp). I enjoyed it a lot, and it answered so many nagging and perplexing questions for me. I share this, and many may know about it as it's not that new, so you can check it out yourself. Not going to debate or discuss anything as that is not my cup of tea, thank you. Just tossing this out there so you know about it. https://www.amazon.com/Making-Sense-Bible-Rediscovering-Scripture/dp/0062234986/ref=asc_df_0062234986/?tag=hyprod-20&linkCode=df0&hvadid=312111868709&hvpos=1o1&hvnetw=g&hvrand=13776057707950460462&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=9012050&hvtargid=pla-546573317487&psc=1 It brought me a lot of peace because I had already sniffed a lot of this out myself with online articles. Had I read something like this many decades ago, I doubt I would have been sucked into the way, and for sure not the wretched corpse. Peace
  34. 1 point
  35. 1 point
    I like the total of 1 comment at the very bottom of their web page. But I must say...I really like the comment. LOL
  36. 1 point
    I'm sure there were better ways to spend your time, so I don't disagree. I hope you consider that lives aren't always efficient, and that NOBODY has a life with NO regrets. If you'd lived that way, you'd have been a different person, and perhaps part of what makes you who you are (in a good way) might be missing if you'd lived differently. That doesn't change the reality, but hopefully you'll conclude it was not ALL a waste of time. Me, I've found I learned a lot about compassion after getting hurt and needing compassion. I didn't like learning it that way, but.....
  37. 1 point
    Yeah, changed the names, called outsiders names for being outsiders, then did the same thing with the new names. Didn't celebrate Valentines, but "Happy Hearts" was the same thing with a different name, "Ho-Ho" was celebrated the same as Christmas, and so on. I forget the other name for Halloween, but locally we never renamed it.
  38. 1 point
    In December 1957.....when wierwille started his independent undertaking of The Way, Inc., he was stumbling into the unknown. For 10 years (1957-1967), wierwille drove from city to city teaching B.G. Leonard's class, The Gifts of the Spirit, to mostly church people. By teaching 9-12 classes a year, wierwille was reaching an estimate of 200-275 new people each year. Yet, in 1960......the Troy/Piqua followers wanted vpw to move his operation from Van Wert to their area, NOT the wierwille farm. So, when Vic and Harry decided that the wierwille homestead was going to be the new headquarters of twi........a Troy/Piqua exodus was their response. Wierwille ran class after class in the 60's..............and the percentages of who committed to wierwille's "ministry" were dismal. Notice: Neither vpw or mrs. w document any signs, miracles or wonders from God during these early-to-mid 1960s. They have to reach back to the India trip or Van Wert days to fabricate anything of substance that would indicate the working of holy spirit. Seems like 1960-1967.........wierwille was in the wilderness [until the filming of pfal]. The filming of pfal in 1967 was wierwille's attempt to stay relevant. Wierwille NEEDED a steady stream of money (tithing)......or else, failure was imminent. This new pfal class was designed with a subliminal, subterfuge agenda.......to strip new students from their family, church, higher education and community and set up a new cult family. All of the support systems were to be undermined and eliminated.....and replaced. No, wierwille did not have some devious master plan behind this........just a narcissistic appetite that needed fed and the exploitation of the youth was a means to that end. Was wierwille planting a garden? Nope. Wierwille was planting a cult........one deceptive weed at a time.
  39. 1 point
    OK, I will rephrase. I feel you got the intent, but apparently due to a couple of scriptures having similar phrases, the accuracy is missed. I will take that as I need to explain it better. THERE IS NO HOUSEHOLD OF GOD DISTINCT FROM THE BODY OF CHRIST. Or, if you understand the statement with a bit of original intent there is no "household of God" as taught by the Way International. This meaning that ordinary Christians are "in the family of God", but those in the Way are "in the household of God".. THERE IS NO DISTINCTION BETWEEN THE FAMILY OF GOD AND THE HOUSEHOLD OF GOD. As applied to the verses in Gal and Eph above, both references are talking about the overall group of Christians in the world that one might encounter as a classification separate than "all men". Those verses carry an instruction to value highly all those belonging to Christ, not a distinct group under authority of the Way, or the R&R railroad folks, or whatever church it is you might be attending. Paul's instruction is not saying to Christian believers "do good unto all, but single out those in your church only to be especially good unto" or saying that the "fellowcitizens with the saints" is a group that includes only those of your particular denomination. Definitely not those who "took the class" or some such nonsense. For Way people THERE IS NO HOUSEHOLD OF GOD. THERE IS ONLY A FAMILY OF GOD WHICH IS THE BODY OF CHRIST ON EARTH TODAY.
  40. 1 point
    An Insidious Plan..........(proceeding in a gradual, subtle way; intending to entrap and harm) Where spiritual abuse intersects with multi-level marketing scams People are disposable......keep payroll and any "retirement pensions" at minimum levels Whitewash the history......and laud programs and classes with International wayspeak Love-bomb the newbies with all the "benefits" to their biblical research Keep polishing the bannisters and manicuring the grass.....newbies won't see deception Entrap them in dependency to commit/give to the cult (gain access to their wallets) Generic website and way magazines......all information and contact lists centrally controlled The wheels of justice turn slowly, but grind exceedingly fine.
  41. 1 point
    Chock, how sad! But, the GSC can only do so much; if people want to believe TWI's Bull Shucks, that is their right. But in my heart, I know the GSC, is a font of knowledge for former TWI people, and I am grateful that I found it.

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