Fellow Ministers, Mr. Wayne Cole has just brought to me in my office a memo that GTA has become very aggressive in his efforts to sow the seeds of discord within God's Church. That he is subtly putting questions and doubts in members' minds, making false charges and misstatements designed to affect them emotionally, turning them against God's Church and Work, and gaining financial support for himself.
He claims to be giving the "inside story" about "his father" and the "goings on" at headquarters. This, as Mr. Cole explains, leaves you ministers at a disadvantage.
I have asked Mr. Cole to send you as soon as possible an explanation of what really is going on, and what did, under GTA'S assumption of absolute authority never given him!
Meanwhile, I rush this to you, to put you in position to answer those doubts, suspicions, and possible oppositions GTA is so adroitly, cleverly and subtly (he has to be inspired by Satan — for no one, let alone GTA, could have the sly psychologically effective and emotion-stirring subtle cleverness) to so try to damage and destroy the Work of God.
In brief, I give you now this much.
Anyone who accuses and tries to create suspicion invariably is himself GUILTY of that which he accuses in others.
The four specific reasons I wrote in the disfellowshipment letter to him were not even the tip of the iceberg. They were four specific details of the moment given me, on the day that I hurriedly wrote that letter, by Messrs. Cole, Wright, LaRavia, and Rader — all of which I am ASSURED were correct, despite his denials. But the BIG REASON was simply THIS:
After my son had three times been put out of the Church for improper conduct, unbecoming a minister of Christ, on his profession of repentance I had accepted him back. At the time, by board resolution, Mr. Al Portune was Executive Vice-President.
I intended to require a full year's probation before turning any administrative jurisdiction over to my son. But (he was received back in June, 1972), by the spring of early 1973, because I was that year away 200 out of the 365 days, Mr. Portune felt the responsibility of day-to-day administration was too great a burden, and with Mr. David Antion he came to my office saying that I would just have to turn the daily administrative job back to my son.
That year and in the following, 1974, I was away giving out Christ's Gospel worldwide, 200 days a year, and in 1975 and 1976, 300 out of the 365 days.
I began to sense an undercover conspiracy for my son to take over — as two of King David's sons, Adonijah and Absalom, tried by deceptive means to conspire to take over David's throne.
Does not history repeat? David's son Absalom, because of a murder (not adultery) was in banished isolation. But good-hearted David, his father, authorized his return. On returning he spent two years in Jerusalem, and then plotted to steal the throne from his father. But God had set David on that throne, and Absalom's conspiracy failed — yet David loved Absalom and wept over him. Later, another son, Adonijah, conspired to usurp David's throne.
I loved and still love my son very deeply. But often a son feels hostility and resentment against his father.
Well I gave the routine day-to-day administration as Executive Vice-President over to Ted. I made it EXPLICIT that he was only to administer the policies, and uphold the doctrines Christ had put in his Church through his chosen Apostle — that I retained all authority over policies and doctrines.
Yet, while I was away, I guess it was a repeat of history again, in a sense. When Moses was called by God to be on Mount Sinai with him, the people said, "as for this Moses... we wot not what has become of him" — and Aaron, whom Moses had left in charge, made for them a golden calf and led them in this FALSE WORSHIP. I do not mean that the people or the others at headquarters took the lead in forming the "golden calf" of secularism and watering down God's truth — but while I was away on CHRIST'S ASSIGNMENT, carrying HIS GOSPEL INTO ALL THE WORLD, that secularism and watering down of doctrine did take place under GTA's leadership.
Immediately after he was reinstated in executive administration, he demoted older and top ministers, loyal to me and God's Word — Raymond McNair, Dibar Apartian, Dr. Rod Meredith, Dr. Herman Hoeh, Dennis Luker, Dr. Zimmerman and others. They were threatened with losing their jobs entirely if they contacted me, or told me what was going on!
I did not want accreditation! My son did, and kept after me about it. I said that it would soon make Ambassador like any other college — no longer God's College, unique in all the world. He argued and insisted that he could get accreditation and still keep Ambassador God's College. Finally, under conditions that it would be accomplished that way, I consented. Now my son has said publicly that I wanted accreditation. THAT IS A LIE! AND HE KNOWS IT IS A LIE! All through this maze of efforts for accreditation I have repeated that again and again.
WHAT HAPPENED? My son began moving more and more PhD's from other colleges and universities into the faculty. Ted always wanted a more liberal way of life than I had learned from GOD'S WORD.
During these past four years, Ambassador became a totally different college than I had founded. Jesus Christ was no longer the head over the college — CHRIST WAS KICKED OUT! Last year for the first time there was a protest demonstration on campus. Immorality became rampant. I won't go further in this report as to the nauseating details. I have had to start Ambassador College all over again, starting with one class only, which next year, will become a sophomore class, with a new incoming freshman class. I plan, under Jesus Christ's guidance, to take four years, just as at the beginning, to build once again GOD'S COLLEGE!!
My son began watering down doctrines behind my back while I was away. A leading minister said only yesterday in my office, that I would address a ministerial meeting, then as soon as I was gone a totally different attitude would be taking over my son.
On the STP, a memo from a minister in high position at headquarters writes: those preparing the STP "were operating under Ted's direction. I've heard Ted say for years that he wanted a series of hard-bound books in which the doctrines of the Church were systematically outlined" (emphasis mine).
I never so much as heard of that desire and it was entirely under Ted's direction — without my realizing it! The memo continues, "he mentioned this at the conference."
Some three or four years ago I sensed the conspiracy as I mentioned above, for a "coup" to take over the Church and the College. I went privately to Ted about it. He denied it, and I made the mistake of believing him and assuring the Church that we were TOGETHER back-to-back. I was! He WASN'T!
So it became "a house divided." My son brought about DIVISION in the Church. At headquarters they wondered who was in charge, though Ted undoubtedly had succeeded in giving many the false idea that he was. A HOUSE DIVIDED AGAINST ITSELF CANNOT STAND!
You know that! My rebellious son, often professing publicly to honor his father, behind my back, and in many, many private conversations (I now learn) ridiculed and insinuated many things designed to discredit his father. Read again Romans 16, verses 17 and 18. He not only caused division, he now is by "good words and fair speeches" deceiving the hearts of many of the simple, but trusting and sincere brethren!
How should you answer his statements arousing questions, doubts, and suspicions against GOD'S CHURCH AND WORK?
As stated above, a HOUSE DIVIDED can't stand. God's Church is no longer divided! Mr. GTA is now sowing the seeds of discord among brethren — one of the seven things GOD HATES! But assure all brethren that GOD'S CHURCH MARCHES ON!
My son is out to GET, not GIVE. While he writes and by his clever words and "fair speeches," he deceives some sincere brethren into thinking he is "proclaiming the gospel to the world". YOU KNOW that is a LIE! He has no facilities to go "into all the world for a witness unto all nations" — but GOD'S CHURCH HAS! The Plain Truth is now nearing the THREE MILLION circulation mark, and we have plans to make it not only the FINEST magazine on earth, but at least next to Reader's Digest in mass circulation!
GTA is on three or four radio stations once a week only, and a small station in Los Angeles daily — but look at and compare the radio and TV log in the Good News! God's Church has the FACILITIES, and ORGANIZATION, the POWER of God's Holy Spirit to fulfill the PURPOSE of the Church — to get Christ's message into ALL THE WORLD! We have large office staffs around the world. The sun never sets on our offices!
He has NO CHURCH, an actual fact, but anybody can incorporate as a church. When my son was still in God's Church, with a sharp decline setting in the past five years, he began to quit using the name of God in the Work, and established the name "GARNER TED ARMSTRONG". He even got out a new letterhead for correspondence, with just his own name and his PICTURE at the top! As Messrs. Cole, LaRavia, Wright and others said to me, finally daring to come to me with what really was "going on" at headquarters, Ted was trying to DESTROY everything that Jesus Christ had built through his apostle, and build something for Garner Ted! That is precisely what he is doing now — not getting the gospel into all the world — but trying to GET for himself Worldwide Church of God members!
He is not a church! He has no church! There is but ONE TRUE CHURCH and today that is the Church of which you are ministers — the WORLDWIDE CHURCH OF GOD — which truly is worldwide, not a pretense, HYPOCRISY and a SHAM! Answer peoples' questions with these truths!
He is trying to make an ISSUE of a supposed father-and-son controversy, in which he makes emotional appeals for sympathy and support!
The ISSUE is this and this only! WHY HAS GOD CALLED US OUT OF TODAY'S WORLD? God has only ONE CHURCH, headed by JESUS CHRIST, who himself chose his Apostle and which is doing the Work and fulfilling the mission of the one Church to which we were called! THAT IS THE ONLY REAL ISSUE! Fasten peoples minds on THAT! Get their minds off the petty, subtle, personal things.
You know he is DISHONORING his father. When he shut off all communication and authority above himself, he SHUT OFF JESUS CHRIST AND GOD THE FATHER!
As for his efforts to defame and discredit and dishonor his father about doctors and drugs, he has lied, as well as in other areas. He has said that when I sit down, and rise, I totter. That's a lie! I label it a lie! All those in the Church at Pasadena, and at Tuscon who see TELECASTS recorded weekly, see me walk briskly onto the stage — and when I am through — though I sit at a desk during the broadcast, even as my son did — I don't totter, as a few thousand eye witnesses will tell you! Ted has said that at one point I fainted in his arms — ANOTHER LIE! Once several months ago, I stumbled over scales I couldn't see on the floor of the bathroom, and momentarily lost balance against an iron railing. I was perfectly able to get back on my feet, but Ted happened to be just outside the door and helped me get back on my feet. That could have happened to a 48 year old — Ted's age.
I don't think his ridiculous lies about my being senile need any answer. I am on TV coast to coast every week, and hundreds of thousands know better!
I have worked very hard for 86 years. At age 85 I was considered dead from heart failure, after over-extending myself. I knew I had high blood pressure and was overweight, and until I could reduce my weight I was taking some non-drug pills prescribed by a Tokyo physician, to reduce or to regulate blood pressure. I went to the only doctor I knew in Tucson last August for a refill prescription — the same doctor I went to for a required checkup for a marriage license. I had no intention of putting myself under his care. He wanted, on taking my blood pressure, to put me immediately into a hospital. I REFUSED — said I did not need his services, and went to my home in Tucson. Next day I looked up from relaxing in a chair and saw the doctor standing over me. I was surprised. I had not called him. Again I said I did not need him, and refused to go to a hospital. I PRAYED INSTEAD! I was in a more serious condition, however, than I realized, and the next thing I knew a hospital bed had been moved into my bedroom, and nurses stationed on eight hour shifts around the clock.
I suffered a complete heart failure at that time. But God restored me to set his Church and Work back on his track through the mouth-to-mouth resuscitation of my wife's sister and heart pressuring of a nurse. I have not been on drugs, as such, but medicines designed only to help nature work in my body.
If you will read parts five and six of the articles on healing in the Good News, you will see that I have set no example contrary to what I preach as the OFFICIAL CHURCH DOCTRINE!
It's like one letter accusing me of putting my elder son Dick in a hospital and under a doctor's care. I received a telephone call that Dick had been in a head-on crash, and already was in a hospital. I drove immediately to San Luis Obispo, and saw him completely shattered and broken up in a hospital. Neither I nor he put him there — he was taken there unconscious by the police. I annointed and prayed for him, but legally I would have been re-strained from taking him out of the hospital or out of the doctor's care. I have been accused in my wife's case because I didn't take her to a hospital. Many headquarters ministers prayed over her with me continually. Dr. Parrish from Big Sandy came and lived the last month or more of her illness in an adjoining bedroom. A registered nurse — also a member of God's Church — was with her night and day. Dr. Parrish thought best not to send her to a hospital. Yet, either way I get ACCUSED!
Fellows, don't covet my job! If you had it, you'd get continual persecution, false accusation, every opposition. You'd find Satan zeroing in on you to DESTROY YOU and YOU WOULD HAVE TO RELY ON JESUS CHRIST, for otherwise Satan would destroy you!
But I praise GOD — he is still on his throne, and Jesus Christ is there beside him, interceding for us!
Finally, REMEMBER THE ONE AND ONLY ISSUE IS "WHY GOD HAS CALLED US OUT OF THE WORLD" — HE HAS CALLED US not into following a man with no church, college, or facilities for performing the GREAT COMMISSION, but into his Church which he raised, has blessed, and though under my son's secular mismanagement stopped growing, is now back on the track — ONCE AGAIN GROWING!
The INCOME is UP! GTA has no access to the figures, and when he says it is down he is lying! The business office announced Tuesday — I think it will be included in this week's Pastor's Report — the Church owes less than at any time in many years.
Notice Proverbs 6:16-19: "These six things does the Eternal HATE: yea, SEVEN are an abomination unto him: a proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, an heart that devises wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, a false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren." How many of these has my own dear son allowed himself to be ensnared?
Fellow Ministers, PLEASE join a broken-hearted father in praying daily and fervently that God will somehow, in his own way, bring about circumstances to cause my son to realize the evil path he is now treading, and bring him to a real repentance, that, this time, will be LASTING! I want to see him in God's kingdom, with my son Dick, and his mother — the wife of my youth and for fifty years.
Save the Church from his Satan-inspired, smooth-tongued, insidiously planted questions and doubts in the minds of God's people — even as Jesus would, even as he called a spade a spade in branding the hypocritical Pharisees as liars, whited sepulchers, blind guides, fools! Did Jesus LOVE them? Yes, he gave his LIFE, praying, "Father forgive them for they know not what they do!" He loved them and I love my son Ted. But Jesus didn't mince words when it came to their evil doings, and neither can I.
My son stood over me, saying, angrily, "Dad, I could DESTROY YOU!" Apparently by lying he is trying. But he distorts, exaggerates, minimizes, and lies outright, and I simply have to tell people that they cannot believe what he says. He has disqualified himself as a minister according to 1 Timothy 3:7. Perhaps I should not have taken him back into the ministry in 1972 — but I felt he had repented as other ministers also felt, that what God forgives he FORGETS. But he has come near to DESTROYING GOD'S CHURCH, COLLEGE, AND WORK, SINCE THEN. God raised me back from death to set his CHURCH BACK ON GOD'S TRACK, so that once again it may have CHRIST'S BLESSING, and LEAP AHEAD IN GREATER POWER THAN BEFORE!
PRAY WITH ME! STAND FAST!