Intercontinental Church of God--What do they believe?

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by Linda64, Feb 11, 2006.

  1. Linda64

    Linda64
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    In a number of threads in this forum, I have seen a number of links to the Intercontinental Church of God: Garner Ted Armstrong Evangelistic Association. I know that the ICOG:GTAEA is a splinter group of the Worldwide Church of God , which was started by Herbert W. Armstrong in 1933. What more can you tell me concerning the doctrines of this church?
     
  2. nate

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    Here is the Doctrinal Statement of the ICOG.
    ICOG
     
  3. Linda64

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    Thanks nate--

    I will check that out.
     
  4. eloidalmanutha

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    ouch!!! a horse of a different color is still a horse . . .

    here's another link that gives several sources to read:

    http://www.freedomofmind.com/resourcecenter/groups/w/wcog/

    you also might read some of seekgod.ca articles which discusses their theology and also links armstrongism to other movements and cults. just go into search and type in world wide church of god.

    http://www.seekgod.ca/index.htm
     
  5. Linda64

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    Here are some of the beliefs of the ICOG from the Statement of Faith (Congregation in Knoxville, TN)--I got this from the website nate posted:

    Statement of Beliefs
    The following Statement of Beliefs apply to the Intercontinental Church of God and the Garner Ted Armstrong Evangelistic Association.

    Statement of Beliefs
    Garner Ted Armstrong Evangelistic Association

    1. GOD

    God is the supreme creator and sustainer of the entire universe who is eternal, all present, and all powerful. God is a single spirit family presently consisting of God the Father and Jesus Christ the Son. God is a loving, kind, and merciful being who is sharing His magnificent and eternal existence by reproducing Himself through mankind.

    Psalm 19:1; 50:, 6-7; Isaiah 44:6; Nehemiah 9:6,16-17; John 1:12-13; 3:16; I John 4:8; Romans 1:20; Colossians 1:16; Hebrews 1:1-2; I John 3:1-2


    2. BIBLE

    The entire Bible is the divinely inspired Word of God which contains His plan of salvation, and the record of His participation in history. The Bible is God's method of revealing knowledge that man cannot discover for himself; the foundation of knowledge and the guidebook of life. God's written Word, is revealed in two parts, the Old and New Testaments. Together, they form the basis of Christianity as taught by the church and as practiced by the true Christian.

    Deuteronomy 8:3; Matthew 4:4; Luke 4:4; John 17:17; Romans 8:16; I Corinthians 2:7-11; II Timothy 3:16-17; II Peter 1:20


    3. JESUS CHRIST

    Jesus of Nazareth is the Christ, the Son of God and the Son of man. He is the Messiah who was prophesied in the Old Testament and described in the New Testament as being fully human and fully divine. He has existed throughout eternity as the "Word" and is the second member of the God family. He divested Himself of His power and His majesty, to become a human being in order to live a perfect life, thereby re-qualifying for eternal life. He then died for the sins of all mankind as our loving and merciful Savior. He was then resurrected and ascended to heaven to become our Lord and High Priest. Jesus Christ will return to earth to establish the Kingdom of God where He will rule as King of kings with His saints as co-rulers forever.

    Deuteronomy 18:15; Matthew 17:15-17; John 1:1-14; 3:16; Acts 2:32-33; Romans 5:8; Philippians 2:7; Hebrews 4:14-15; Revelation 1:13-16


    4. THE HOLY SPIRIT

    The Holy Spirit is the spiritual extension of God, containing the essence, power and mind of God. God uses His Holy Spirit to beget Christians as His sons and daughters. The Holy Spirit spiritually strengthens Christians, converting their minds to be more like God’s mind. The Holy Spirit also serves as an earnest or guarantee of future eternal life.

    Acts 1:8; 2:38; Romans 8:9, 14; I Corinthians 2:16; Ephesians 1:13-14

    http://www.icogknoxville.org/beliefs.htm

    This is just a portion of their beliefs. From this "Statement of Faith", we see, first of all that their doctrine of the Godhead is NOT biblical. God is NOT a single spirit family presently consisting of God the Father and Jesus Christ the Son.

    Jesus Christ did NOT divest Himself of His power and His majesty, to become a human being in order to live a perfect life, thereby re-qualifying for eternal life. He then died for the sins of all mankind as our loving and merciful Savior. He was then resurrected and ascended to heaven to become our Lord and High Priest.

    The Holy Spirit is NOT the spiritual extension of God, containing the essence, power and mind of God.

    It is clear that the nature of God taught by the ICOG is NOT biblical! I would classify this church as a CULT.
     
  6. Ben W

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    When the Worldwide Church of God broke up. various splinter groups came out of it. What is interesting is how many of these do not get along with one another. Often beliving that they are the correct group and the other is not. Yet all tracing liniage to Herbert Armstrong.

    It is also interesting to note that these groups in general do not accept the Christian doctrine of the Trinity, and are unable to affirm the Nicean Creed, which incedently was brought about for that very reason, to seperate those that could not affirm Christianity.
     
  7. gb93433

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    It still exists but has gone from heresy to orthodoxy.

    http://www.wcg.org/
     
  8. Linda64

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    Here are 2 links--one to the Worldwide Church of God regarding these "splinter" groups who claim orthodoxy and have been accepted as evangelical. There are still some major problems with this group:

    http://www.ondoctrine.com/10wwcog2.htm

    http://www.ondoctrine.com/10armstg.htm

    This is the group (Intercontinental Church of God:Garner Ted Armstrong Evangelistic Association) which is one of the "splinter" groups--this church is most definitely a CULT as you will see in the article.
     
  9. nate

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    The Worldwide Church of God has it's problems but it certainly is much better than many of the other groups running under the banner of 'Church of God'. I would certainly deem the ICOG heretical.
     
  10. Eric B

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    Actually, Armstrong's position was a modified two-point Calvinism that emphasized "total inability" and "unconditional election" (i.e. "None can come unless called"). The "Second chance" was not a real second chance at all, but the first chance for those not called in this life. It was all based on a PLAN where God called some people now, but instead of leaving the others trapped in condemnation, He save them later.
    I don't know if the modern group altered the doctrine to "God is unable to save them all now by their choice", but Armstrong never taught anything like that, though he did often use the dilemma of "the person who never heard" to support his view.

    But anyway, to answert the question, ALL of the Armstrong offshoots are IDENTICAL in doctrine to Armstron'gs original organization. They have splintered over fighting for power. Armstrong was a dictatorial leader, who of course claimed to be the one true messenger (the "third Elijah" preceding the final return of Christ even!), so under him were a whole bunch of other control mongers fighting for power, and each wanting to be the true leader of the true Church. So they all broke off their own groups, each claiming to be the true successor to the true Church, even though they believe althe same exact things!
    Truly, carnality run wild.
     
  11. wopik

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  12. Ben W

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    The change in the orignal worldwide Church of God has been amazing to say the least, yet not surprising when you hear the story of how they came to be Trinitarian.

    Joseph Thatch came to the presidency after Armstrong, and one of the first things that happened was that he sent some of his young ministers that were training for ministry at the WCOG to Fuller Theological Seminary. I may be wrong about the particular seminiary, yet that was that one that I am sure I was told. Anyway after a few months, the students came back to Thatch, convinced of the Trinity and various other Christian doctrine, the change was then made.

    To this day that is the reason that the splinter groups of the WCOG and interestingly also the Oneness Pentecostal groups, do not permit their members to go to mainstream Bible Colleges. Their fear has a reasonable foundation, in that often false doctrine falls flat in the face of genuine scholarship and debate.
     
  13. wopik

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    Just as it keeps the weekly Sabbath, the Church of God also observes the annual holy days that were ordered by God, kept by the ancient Israelites and continued by the early New Testament Christians. These seven annual "appointed feasts" pictures God's plan of salvation for man.


    http://www.intercontinentalcog.org/ICGCC/Lesson_Ten.shtml
     
  14. Linda64

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    The feasts were given to Israel--as was the Sabbath--they were not carried over into the New Testament Church.
     
  15. wopik

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    The Sabbath and 'holidays of the Bible' are the only days being kept by Christians in the NT pages.


    It is abundantly clear that the Jerusalem Church never gave up Sabbath observance during the New Testament era. On Paul's last visit to Jerusalem (about 58-60 A.D.), James and all the elders of the Church told Paul how the thousands of converted Jews "are all zealous ["ardent upholders," Moffatt] of the law" (Acts 21:20). In such an environment, it is inconceivable that the cherished and holy Sabbath would no longer be kept.


    In his letter to the Church in Rome in this same time period, 55-59 A.D., Paul reminds them that the Gentiles "have been made partakers of their spiritual things" in a direct reference to the poor saints in the Jerusalem Church for whom Paul was asking physical contributions (Rom. 15:26-27). One cannot imagine that "partaking of their spiritual things" would not include worship on the Sabbath, since it was fully revered by the Jewish Christians in Jerusalem and constituted a significant part of their spiritual lives.


    http://intercontinentalcog.org/ICGCC/Lesson_Seven.shtml


    http://borntowin.net/essays.aspx?eid=26
     
  16. Eric B

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    What I had heard was that people in the Church had consulted Greek scholars, or there were Greek scholars in the church who came clean and admitted that Armstrong's interpretations of certain words was wrong, and this lead to a change of the doctrine of the trinity, and works salvation.
     
  17. wopik

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    The apostolic Church had its own beginning on the day of Pentecost. Again, an Old Testament observance immediately took on deep new Christian Significance for the Church, because the Holy Spirit was first sent on that day.


    Various of the festivals are mentioned elsewhere, though generally only in passing. Pentecost is mentioned twice besides Acts 2 (Acts 20:16; I Cor. 16:8).

    The Day of Atonement is called by its common designation of the time, "the Fast" ( Acts 27:9).

    These all indicate an environment in which the holy days were known, accepted and observed.


    The fact that Paul stated that the holy days "are (present tense) a shadow of what is to come" (Col. 2:17) in no way lessens the Christian's obligation to keep them. (The present tense reference to the holy days is interesting by itself, indicating continued Church observance.)


    Indeed, for the Christian, who can now see in these God-ordained feasts the profound spiritual substance of salvation through Jesus Christ, the imperative to keep the holy days is far greater now than ever.


    http://www.intercontinentalcog.org/ICGCC/Lesson_Ten.shtml
     
  18. Linda64

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    The apostolic Church had its own beginning on the day of Pentecost. Again, an Old Testament observance immediately took on deep new Christian Significance for the Church, because the Holy Spirit was first sent on that day.


    Various of the festivals are mentioned elsewhere, though generally only in passing. Pentecost is mentioned twice besides Acts 2 (Acts 20:16; I Cor. 16:8).

    The Day of Atonement is called by its common designation of the time, "the Fast" ( Acts 27:9).

    These all indicate an environment in which the holy days were known, accepted and observed.


    The fact that Paul stated that the holy days "are (present tense) a shadow of what is to come" (Col. 2:17) in no way lessens the Christian's obligation to keep them. (The present tense reference to the holy days is interesting by itself, indicating continued Church observance.)


    Indeed, for the Christian, who can now see in these God-ordained feasts the profound spiritual substance of salvation through Jesus Christ, the imperative to keep the holy days is far greater now than ever.


    http://www.intercontinentalcog.org/ICGCC/Lesson_Ten.shtml
    </font>[/QUOTE]Well, if your church wants to remain under the Mosaic Law, so be it. But you had better keep all the ceremonial and dietary laws also. There are 613 all together---not just the 10 commandments.

    Jesus Christ is the fulfillment of the Law:

    Matthew 5:17 Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.

    Acts 15:28 For it seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things;

    Acts 15:29 That ye abstain from meats offered to idols, and from blood, and from things strangled, and from fornication: from which if ye keep yourselves, ye shall do well. Fare ye well.

    The Church was NEVER commanded to keep the Sabbath nor the FEASTS.
    FEASTS

    Jewish holy days prescribed in the O.T. There were seven feasts-Day of Atonement, Firstfruits, Passover, Pentecost, Sabbath, Tabernacles, Trumpets, Unleavened Bread, (Le 23:1-44).

    There is no command to keep the feasts in the NT.
     
  19. wopik

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    Hi, Linda64


    Would it surprise anyone to learn that during the time when the New Testament was being written, the entire Christian Church throughout the known world observed the Sabbath day?

    No, I don't mean Sunday. I mean what most people would call "The Jewish Sabbath," Saturday.

    As late as the 80's and 90's of the first century, when the last words of the New Testament were being written, the New Testament church universally observed the seventh day Sabbath.

    This is beyond dispute. It is not a matter of a few proof texts and technical arguments. It is something that is woven into the very fabric of the New Testament.


    http://www.abcog.org/ntsab.htm
     
  20. wopik

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    Jesus commanded His Apostles to wait in Jerusalem to be baptized by the Holy Spirit on the biblical day of Pentecost --- "and being assembled together with them, COMMANDED them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father......NOT MANY DAYS FROM NOW" - acts 1:4-5.


    "NOT MANY DAYS FROM NOW" was Pentecost, which Jesus was NO DOUBT aware of.


    Jesus COMMANDED them to wait in Jerusalem to be baptized by the Holy Spirit ON PENTECOST. The "jewish" feast of Pentecost was used, by the LORD, for a NT meaning and purpose.


    Paul COMMANDED the Christian Church in Greece to keep PASSOVER (nisan 14) because "Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us, therefore, let us KEEP THE FEAST......" - 1 cor 5:7-8.
     

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