Christianity vs. The Worldwide Church of God
While Charles Russell proclaimed humanity lay in spiritual darkness from the time of Christ until his arrival in the 1870’s, Herbert W. Armstrong declared the eighteen and a half centuries of spiritual darkness was not lifted until January 1934, the date of his first radio broadcast. He once announced, “It is I know a shocking staggering FACT to realize that this work – The PLAIN TRUTH, The World Tomorrow program on radio, worldwide and on daily TV in the US (and Canada weekly) – the work going on from Ambassador College and the Worldwide Church of God is the ONLY WORK ON EARTH proclaiming the very gospel of Jesus Christ to the world in great power!”
The magazine, The Plain Truth, has a circulation of 8 million and is available in 7 languages (these numbers have undoubtedly changed since the original writing of this article). However, the plain truth about the Plain Truth and The World Tomorrow is they lack truth and promote error. Such as:
BRITISH ISRAELISM. According to this astounding theory, the ten lost tribes of Israel ended up in England. The English and North Americans are the actual Jewish nation.
SOUL SLEEP. This was picked up from Jehovah’s Witnesses and Seventh Day Adventists who teach the physical body and the soul of a man are one and the same. When a person dies he enters into an unconscious state and remains that way until he is resurrected at the second coming of Christ. This is definitely contrary to the Bible which reveals that a man is a spirit that lives in a body and possesses a soul.
HELL. While satan and his demons will indeed suffer eternally, the non-believer, according to Armstrong doctrine, will be consumed by hell-fire, and cease to exist. (This error is dealt with in Issue #5, Heaven and Hell: The Great Controversy.)
SALVATION. One cannot be assured of salvation until he is resurrected sometime in the future, this in spite of the Bible’s clear instruction, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved.” Salvation comes at the time of believing in (clinging to, trusting in, relying upon) Jesus Christ.
The Worldwide Church of God is a hodgepodge of other religions – Jehovah’s Witness, Mormonism and Seventh Day Adventism. And since Armstrongism teaches its adherents that the Worldwide Church of God is the one and only true church, one’s salvation is indirectly tied to obedience to this church.