Packing Authority, for crying out loud!

In weekly installments, Dave Pack continues to position RCG as Top COG, by showing the other COGs are worse off financially and administratively.

 

In Cry Aloud, Spare Not, Mr Pack lashes out against other COGs and congregations lacking whole-hearted commitment to “the work”. Starting with Isa. 58:1 (“spare not”) he then uses Matt 7:29 (“having authority”) out of context, quotes various colorful terms Jesus used when speaking of evildoers. Following along are quotes from HWA’s notorious 1967 member letter – the one in which HWA uses Loma on her deathbed to demand money. Back in the Clarion Call sermon, Mr Pack conveys his envy of HWA’s masterful writing skills.

 

The point apparently being made is that the self-evident 21st Century Apostle believes he must obey his commission to “speak with authority” which he interprets as name-calling leaders of other COGs and lethargic (insufficiently sacrificing) members.

 

My two shekels worth is about the misuse of Matt 7:28-29: When Jesus had finished saying these things, the crowds were amazed at his teaching, because he taught as one who had authority, and not as their teachers of the law. (NIV) These verses a section of Matthew that begins with the Sermon on the Mount. Jesus had been expounding the Law, not denouncing critics.

 

As for authority, the crowds were amazed that Jesus stated his take on a number of issues without reference to scholarly interpretation. Other teachers of the Law would quote their teacher, who may quote another teacher; some may give 50 different interpretations of a single verse from the Torah. Jesus obviously didn’t do that and I suppose one who wished to speak “with authority” would not be repeatedly quoting his teacher (HWA).

 

Some of the teachings in this section of Matthew had diverse interpretations in the first century. Among Pharisees, there were two opposing camps, the House of Shammai, and the House of Hillel (grandfather of Paul’s teacher, Gamaliel).  Jesus’ teachings were usually closer to that of the more liberal Hillel than the stricter Shammai. A notable exception was divorce, as Hillel taught that a man could divorce his wife for simply serving a bad meal.

 

Mr Pack wants to use the “strong words” that Jesus leveled at corrupt rulers, hypocrites, those with teachings or traditions that contradict scripture, and so on. I’d say that Ambassador Report covered a good share of these at the WCG. Let’s see, corruption – siphoning off tithe money (the tithing doctrine itself twisted scripture to enforce a teaching that was very specific), hypocrisy – teaching against doctors while HWA had the finest medical care, contradicting scripture – sacrifice to give to the Church rather than help sick or elderly non-member parents (“honor your father and your mother”) – telling members to borrow money from the bank under false pretenses to give to the Church (lying, fraud) – and many more.

 

But Mr Pack is right about one thing; he did forever change my view of Isaiah 58:1.
………………

Hoss


For more on Mr Pack, see AR 32 under the heading “David Pack’s Reign of Terror

 

3 Replies to “Packing Authority, for crying out loud!”

  1. Hoss writes:

    “As for authority, the crowds were amazed that Jesus stated his take on a number of issues without reference to scholarly interpretation. Other teachers of the Law would quote their teacher, who may quote another teacher; some may give 50 different interpretations of a single verse from the Torah. Jesus obviously didn’t do that and I suppose one who wished to speak “with authority” would not be repeatedly quoting his teacher (HWA).”

    An excellent point , which also describes the legal profession in the US today, directly condemned in Isaiah 29:13, and referred by Jesus in Matthew 15:8-9. The Pharisees used the practice known in law today as “stare decisis”(in its latinized form sounds like “starry decheeses”).

    You have hit on the core of Jesus’ message here. In his condemnation of the Pharisees and Lawyers in Matthew 23. They were resting on “stare decisis”, the judgements and ruling of past rabbis or judges, “shutting up the kingdom of God to men”(Matt 23:13, Luke 11:52). A reading of Isaiah 29 shows that the law was to be openly taught to all members of Israel, and passed from parent to child, taught and understood so that two witnesses would always be available for testimony as both law and fact. Jesus taught with authority in law, and he expected his followers to do the same, not to follow any man.

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