Revisiting “Smug”

Herbert Armstrong was smug. He had an explanation for everything. He believed that God personally revealed everything really important to him. He was a gnostic. He wrote booklets: Does God Exist, Seven Proofs God Exists, The Proof of the Bible. He was cock sure. At the same time he was so arrogant that he claimed that everybody who did not agree with him was wrong.


Biblical Polytheism

Though many of the world’s major religions today are monotheistic, meaning they believe in the existence of only one god, essentially all of them began as polytheistic in one way or another. Take Judaism, for example. Today, it solely believes in Yahweh, the same one god that Christianity and Islam pray to. When Judaism was young, however, many of its followers worshipped Yahweh as “the one god above all others,” meaning there were others to be above.

For example, in ancient Canaan pre-Judaism, polytheism was the rule of the day, with various gods known as Baal’s all receiving worship. Even when Judaism entered the picture, Yahweh was initially considered just another deity. Then, as cultures continually warred, Yahweh came to be held above the rest, and then every Baal became one Baal, and then the one Baal became an archenemy of the true God, Yahweh.