Retired priest: ‘Hell’ was invented by the church to control people with fear:
Spong: I don’t think Hell exists. I happen to believe in life after death, but I don’t think it’s got a thing to do with reward and punishment. Religion is always in the control business, and that’s something people don’t really understand. It’s in a guilt-producing control business. And if you have Heaven as a place where you’re rewarded for you goodness, and Hell is a place where you’re punished for your evil, then you sort of have control of the population. And so they create this fiery place which has quite literally scared the Hell out of a lot of people, throughout Christian history. And it’s part of a control tactic.
Morrison: But wait a minute. You’re saying that Hell, the idea of a place under the earth or somewhere you’re tormented for an eternity – is actually an invention of the church?
Spong: I think the church fired its furnaces hotter than anybody else. But I think there’s a sense in most religious life of reward and punishment in some form. The church doesn’t like for people to grow up, because you can’t control grown-ups. That’s why we talk about being born again. When you’re born again, you’re still a child. People don’t need to be born again. They need to grow up. They need to accept their responsibility for themselves and the world.
Morrison: What do you make of the theology which is pretty quite prominent these days in America, which is there is one guaranteed way not to go to hell; And that is to accept Jesus as your personal savior.
Spong: Yeah, I grew up in that tradition. Every church I know claims that ‘we are the true church’ – that they have some ultimate authority, ‘We have the infallible Pope,’ We have the Bible.’… The idea that the truth of God can be bound in any human system, by any human creed, by any human book, is almost beyond imagination for me.
I mean, God is not a Christian. God is not a Jew or a Muslim or a Hindi or Buddhist. All of those are human systems, which human beings have created to try to help us walk into the mystery of God. I honor my tradition. I walk through my tradition. But I don’t think my tradition defines God. It only points me to God.
KKK propaganda—stuffed into plastic baggies with pieces of peppermint and Tootsie Rolls—include a phone number for the Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan. Planted under the cover of darkness, the fliers were distributed in California, Kansas, Alabama, Mississippi, and Georgia.
The Rockdale County sheriff’s department in Conyers, Georgia, collected more than 80 fliers and is investigating whether anyone can be charged with criminal trespass or littering.
“Whether it was a joke or from an organization doesn’t matter to me,” Said Sheriff Eric Levett . “The fact that it was done during this time is ignorant and cowardly.”
A message on the hate-spewing hotline, based in North Carolina, salutes 21-year-old Dylann Roof, who was charged with murder for the killing nine people in Charleston. Roof penned a racist manifesto before the June 17 mass shooting and wanted to start a “race war.”
“We in the Loyal White Knights of the KKK would like to say hail victory to … Dylan S. Roof who decided to do what the Bible told him,” a man chirps in the recording. “An eye for an eye. A tooth for a tooth. They [black people] have spilled our blood too long. It’s about time someone spilled theirs.”
“If it ain’t white, it ain’t right,” the message concludes. “White power!”
Robert Jones, of the Royal White Knights in North Carolina, sait that the Klan is undergoing a national recruitment drive that coincidentally started around the time of the South Carolina murders.
“We’re doing this from the East Coast to the West Coast, just to let people know the Klan’s in their community,” said Jones, the grand dragon of the hate group based in Pelham, N.C. “Especially with all the stuff that’s in the news—in South Carolina they’re wanting to take the Confederate flag down.”
“It’s a racial war against our people,” Jones said. “The more the media pushes multiculturalism down our throat, the more you’re going to see killings like this.”
In Pryor Creek, Oklahoma, the Klan also recently caught cops’ attention when it got personal—naming and urging a boycott against local Mexican restaurants.
Jones said he supports Roof’s crime, but preferred that he “shot the correct people,” such as minority drug dealers rather than churchgoers.
“Stop going to Maggie’s Mexican Kitchen … [she] thinks she can talk trash about white people in Spanish, thinking none of us will understand her anti-American, anti-white rhetoric,” read the flier discovered on Father’s Day. “Or, El Humilde Mexican Restaurant, which takes your money while employing illegals and sending our American currency back to their homeland.”
Captain Rod Howell of the Mayes County sheriff’s department in Pryor said “the timing’s not a coincidence.”
“They’re doing it for a reason,” Howell said. “They’re trying to get as many people as possible to put some fuel in the fire. With the political climate the way it is today, it’s really tough right now.”
Meanwhile, Alabama residents were horrified by the racially-charged hate bags filled with candy.
“I didn’t even know the KKK was alive and well,” Shannon Phillips of Lake Viewtold local news station WIAT. “I certainly didn’t know it was in our area. It disturbed me that they put Tootsie Rolls in here trying to appeal to children. I mean that’s just pathetic, sick, disgusting.”
Phillips said she and other neighbors scrambled to pick up the bags before kids could find them.
“Why would they put a piece of peppermint candy in here? There’s no sweetness involved in this group,” fumed another resident, Charley Buckland, to ABC 13. “This is a very sad, sad situation when you find these in your yards. It’s very disheartening.”
Cops in nearby Bessemer, Alabama, filled a 30-gallon bag with the bulletins, which officers collected from one church and more than 60 homes.
“If we find out who has done it, we’ll deal with it,” Police Chief Nathaniel Rutledge Jr. reported. “For right now, it’s criminal littering at the very least.”
After the fliers were found in Topeka, Kansas, the police chief there called the U.S. Attorney’s office and the FBI and held a press conference with the city’s Black Ministers Association.
Other fliers were found as far as Fullerton, California, a city of 135,161 in Orange County. Proclaiming “Save our land, Join the Klan,” some of the baggies—anchored by rocks and candy so they wouldn’t blow away—misspelled “California.”
“It’s just wrong. There’s no words,” Fullerton resident Alia Cass told CBS Los Angeles. “Racism isn’t born. It’s taught.”
Today, the ”church” of Scientology exists through intimidation, bullying and outright psychological terrorism of its remaining members.
“Disconnection is the severance of all ties between a Scientologist and a friend, colleague, or family member deemed to be antagonistic towards Scientology. The practice of disconnection is a form of shunning. Among Scientologists, disconnection is viewed as an important method of removing obstacles to one’s spiritual growth. In some circumstances, disconnection has ended marriages and separated children from their parents. The Church of Scientology has repeatedly denied that such a policy exists, though as of February 2012 its website acknowledged the practice and described it as a human right. In the United States, the Church has tried to argue in court that disconnection is a constitutionally protected religious practice. However, this argument was rejected because the pressure put on individual Scientologists to disconnect means it is not voluntary.” – Wikipedia
“I just found out my daughter Jessica got engaged and I can’t even celebrate with her. These are the times that #Scientology‘s enforced disconnection hits me the hardest, but at the same time it makes me fight for my kids even harder. — feeling sad.”
My friend Spike Robinson (sadly no relation to me), wrote a song about how it feels to be disconnected from a Scientologist loved one. It reflects how thousands of disconnected people feel. Here it is:
For more information on disconnection and to read more stories of people who have been painfully disconnected from friends and family, Please Click Here.
UNITED STATES – Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
“No matter what, the Court’s ruling does not upend millennium of truth,” former Rep. Michele Bachmann said. “Many Americans will choose to follow God’s ways rather than this Court and they should suffer no penalty for doing so. The Court has flung open the gate to lawsuits from those pushing the gay agenda against those who disagree with same sex marriage.”
Religious Right activists have compared today’s gay marriage ruling to the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks and Pearl Harbor, warning of imminent divine judgment and civil war.
Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, reacted with guns blzaing, calling the ruling a “civilization-changing decision that destroys our nation’s heritage of Biblical marriage. May God forgive our Supreme Court majority for its arrogance and its self-apotheosis.”
Invoking biblical history, he warned, “Both Moses and Jesus stated that it was God’s law that ‘a man will leave his father and mother and a woman will leave her home and the two will come together as one.’ That defined marriage … The Supreme Court ruling is heartbreaking for the turmoil it will mean for our nation’s future.”
Gohmert indicated two justices should have recused themselves, observing, “It is clear beyond any doubt that Justices Kagan and Ginsberg have held exceedingly strong opinions that same-sex marriages were constitutional by virtue of their having performed them.”
He further warned, “[I]f Moses, Jesus, and contributors to the Bible were correct, God’s hand of protection will be withdrawn as future actions from external and internal forces will soon make clear. I will do all I can to prevent such harm, but I am gravely fearful that the stage has now been set.”
On American Family Radio, Crane Durham said that America is now under “tyranny” as a result of the court’s decision.
One caller said that he is prepared to “abandon ship” and flee America for a nation like Costa Rica or the Philippines, while another caller said that God is about to punish all of the people, such as President Obama and Hillary Clinton, who are celebrating the court’s ruling.
Conservative author Carl Gallups told WorldNetDaily that the Supreme Court’s ruling invites God to wrath upon America:
“This is the most monumental ruling of any court, by any nation in the history of the world,” Gallups said. “The spiritual and world-reaching ramifications will be prolific and devastating.”
“This ruling may prove to be the final death-knell of divine judgment upon our once great nation. For God’s word clearly declares, ‘What God has joined together, let not man put asunder’ (Mark 10:9). Man (The U.S. Supreme Court) has now spit upon God’s word and ‘put asunder’ what God declared as the standard for marriage – one man and one woman joined before God for life.”
Though he has been preaching for 30 years that this day would soon be upon the nation, and received much ridicule and lambasting for doing so, Gallups said he is “deeply saddened that it is now here – among our children and grandchildren.”
“These are the beginnings of the very last days,” he added. “I know I will be further mocked for uttering these words, but I unapologetically come from a biblical world view. I know what the Word of God says — I know what Jesus Himself said.”
View taken on 21 November 2006 at the Navarrenx Sus mansion that houses the community ” Tabitha ‘s Place ” which is considered a cult by the Parliamentary Commission on cults. GUILLAUME BONNAUD / AFP
Ten people were taken into custody Tuesday night after a major police operation conducted in Sus, in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques, in the premises of the sectarian community Tabitha’s Place.
“The activities of this community are the subject of a judicial inquiry that I opened in March 2014 as a result of information provided by a former follower,” said the prosecutor Jean-Christophe Muller at a conference press. The investigation “relates to abuse of vulnerability made in the context of a sectarian movement, the facts of abuse of minors for educational conditions and facts concealed employment” and child labor has Does it abstract.
It is “after long and careful verifications”, including the ramifications of the sect in Spain and Germany, a vast police operation was launched in the night against the castle belonging to Tabitha’s Place, considered as a sect by the parliamentary commission of inquiry on sects. The community is also known under the name of “Apostolic Order,” “Twelve Tribes” or “Ruben and Brothers.” It is part of the American fundamentalist movement Community of the Kingdom of the North Eastern Plymouth Brethren, whose members claim to strictly follow the Bible. The movement has 12 offices worldwide – a reference to the 12 tribes of Israel – one in France, Sus, with unknown number of members.
The operation involved some 200 police, a helicopter, the Criminal Research Institute and medical examiners. A similar operation was conducted in parallel in the Perpignan area where members of the sect also work. Ten people, “men and women community leaders” were in custody Tuesday evening, nine in Pau and Perpignan, Muller said.
Four children placed
Minors present in the community were heard and examined by doctors. Four of them, brothers and sisters of the same family aged 18 months to 13 years, were placed with social services of the General Council after the discovery of “traces of recent corporal punishment”, which are part of “fashion education “in the community, said the prosecutor Pau.
According to the Interministerial Mission of Vigilance and Combat against Sectarian Abuses (MIVILUDES), “physical punishment are regulated and graduated” within the sect, with shots of wicker rod or rule on different body parts. To justify this violence, proponents cite a verse from the Bible: “Foolishness is bound in the heart of children; stick chastises them depart. ”
The judicial investigation for “embezzlement by one parent to the legal obligation to its children” should enable to know under what conditions the “hundreds of minors” that pass the premises of the sect “live, are educated and involved in the economic activity, “said Jean-Christophe Muller.
Miviludes emphasizes that “children are up at 6 am and are taught all morning. In the afternoon, they work with their parents. They do not have the right to play, toys being the devil’s work. ”
Members of Twelve Tribes communities, which operate at Sus farmland and sell fruit and vegetables, are also suspected of clandestine work, of benefit fraud, tax fraud laundering.
In March 2002, 19 members of Tabitha’s Place had been sentenced by the Pau Court of Appeal for “evasion of legal obligations of the parents,” including refusing enrollment and vaccination of their children. In 1997, a 19 month old child had died for lack of food and care. His parents were sentenced in 2001 to twelve years’ imprisonment.
The following is how former cult members and members of spiritually
abusive systems described how they felt when they finally left their group.
This may give you some insight into their pain and why there are no easy
answers for them. It Hurts
It Hurts to discover you were deceived that what you thought was the “one true religion,”the “path to total freedom,” or “truth” was in reality a cult.
It Hurts when you learn that people you trusted implicitly whom you were taught not to
question were “pulling the wool over your eyes” albeit unwittingly.
It Hurts when you learn that those you were taught were your “enemies” were telling the truth after all but you had been told they were liars, deceivers, repressive, satanic etc and not to listen to them.
It Hurts when you know your faith in God hasn’t changed only your trust in an
organization yet you are accused of apostasy, being a trouble maker, a “Judas”. It hurts
even more when it is your family and friends making these accusations.
It Hurts to realize their love and acceptance was conditional on you remaining a member of good standing. This cuts so deeply you try and suppress it. All you want to do is forget but how can you forget your family and friends?
It Hurts to see the looks of hatred coming from the faces of those you love to hear the
deafening silence when you try and talk to them. It cuts deeply when you try and give your child a hug and they stand like a statue, pretending you aren’t there. It stabs like a knife when you know your spouse looks upon you as demonized and teaches your children to hate you.
It Hurts to know you must start all over again. You feel you have wasted so much time.
You feel betrayed, disillusioned, suspicious of everyone including family, friends and other former members.
It Hurts when you find yourself feeling guilty or ashamed of what you were even about
leaving them. You feel depressed, confused, lonely. You find it difficult to make decisions. You don’t know what to do with yourself because you have so much time on your hands now yet you still feel guilty for spending time on recreation.
It Hurts when you feel as though you have lost touch with reality. You feel as though you are “floating” and wonder if you really are better off and long for the security you had in the organization and yet you know you cannot go back.
It Hurts when you feel you are all alone that no one seems to understand what you are
feeling. It hurts when you realize your self confidence and self worth are almost non-
It Hurts when you have to front up to friends and family to hear their “I told you so”
whether that statement is verbal or not. It makes you feel even more stupid than you
already do your confidence and self worth plummet even further.
It Hurts when you realize you gave up everything for the cult your education, career,
finances, time and energy and now have to seek employment or restart your education.
How do you explain all those missing years?
It Hurts because you know that even though you were deceived, you are responsible for being taken in. All that wasted time … at least that is what it seems to you wasted time.
The Pain Of Grief
Leaving a cult is like experiencing the death of a close relative or a broken relationship.
The feeling is often described as like having been betrayed by someone with whom you
were in love. You feel you were simply used.
There is a grieving process to pass through. Whereas most people understand that a person must grieve after a death etc, they find it difficult to understand the same applies in this situation. There is no instant cure for the grief, confusion and pain. Like all grieving periods, time is the healer.
Some feel guilty, or wrong about this grief. They shouldn’t It IS normal. It is NOT wrong
to feel confused, uncertain, disillusioned, guilty, angry, un-trusting these are all part of the process. In time the negative feelings will be replaced with clear thinking, joy, peace, and trust.
Yes It hurts but the hurts will heal with time, patience & understanding.
There is life after the cult.
This article originally appeared on the Cult Awareness & Information Centre out of
Australia, which was run by the late Jan Groenveld. The article is reproduced as it was seen on Jan’s site with some formatting changes.
Elbert Eugene Spriggs – Founder of the Twelve Tribes Cult
Written by an ex member.
1. The community member is not allowed to think for him/herself. In the cult you are expected to just blindly follow what the leaders (“shepherds”) say and all of the members do.
I asked a leader once if they ever agree to disagree but love each other anyway, and he said “no.” Also, they don’t believe they can live in peace with other religions, even Christian ones. Two shepherds stated this and that everyone in the world would have to follow them and their theology. This is crazy since most of their communities are in countries that allow freedom of religion where people from different religions and beliefs live in peace with each other.
I asked them, “If I have different beliefs from you, could I stay here and we can just love each other anyway?” They responded “No.” They teach “You must be saved from your false beliefs.” This means that I’m not allowed to hold any personal beliefs.
I was also informed many times, “You must relinquish all of your opinions.” It’s Elbert’s way or the highway on everything.
2. Twelve Tribes members must give up their free will in order to live in the Elbert Spriggs controlled community. Elbert enforces the abdication of free will through the dissemination of his teachings. Elbert justifies this by saying the community member is actually giving their free will back to God. They hold are very elitist spiritual mentality as they teach they are the only way to God and salvation. Once again, community members must blind follow Elbert Eugene Spriggs and his inane ramblings!
3. You are not allowed to visit the library. They don’t want you reading anything other than their literature. Twelve Tribes members are not permitted to read the newspaper, books on other religions, philosophies, history, physics, etc.
4. Community members are not given carte blanche to use the computer. Shortly before I left they held a teaching in which they were restricting the use of the computers and mobile phones.
5. Twelve Tribes members are not empowered to build muscle. I don’t know why they taught this especially since most members perform hard physical labor all day. They never gave me a real answer to this crazy oppression. Building muscle helps fight against obesity, diabetes, aging, muscular-skeletal problems, etc.; but they were against it.
6. Community members cannot tolerate slang language. They are very superficial and pompous about a lot of things, and they are obsessed with words themselves and not the real meaning behind them.
7. Twelve Tribes members are not granted permission to go for a walk by themselves. I was confronted many times for simply enjoying a walk. They said it’s not allowed. They want to watch every move the community member makes even if they show no signs of doing anything wrong and outside of their rules (like drugs, alcohol, etc.)
8. Community members do not endure the right to socialize with people outside of the cult. I befriended many people in the café when I worked in the cult. I was confronted many times on my sociable personality. They would interrogate me concerning my conversation with people outside the community (cult).
9. Twelve Tribes members are not allowed to have pets. They obtained a kitten in the community I was living in, but I was told not to show affection towards it because it was just there to catch mice. They didn’t want me to be a bad example to the children. They try to brainwash you into believing it’s a place of love but they always rebuked affection.
10. Female community members must wear “sus” pants or a long dress or skirt.
11. Adult male community members must grow a beard and wear their hair in a ponytail. They want to pass off many superficial things as real substance and spiritual fruit but it’s just a bunch of dung. Which reminds me.
12. Twelve Tribes members are not permitted to swear. You can’t even say damn or darn it. It’s more pompous, superficial bullshit. If you confront an adult with no children around and say “There is a lot of bullshit here” then they will correct you for using the word “bullshit” instead of addressing the real issue which is all the bullshit. LOL.
13. Community members are not authorized to choose their own medicine. I support alternative medicine, and it has helped me greatly. I would never force it upon anyone. I was interrogated because I brought a member to the hospital because he was experiencing a gallstone attack. Also, a toddler became ill with pneumonia, and the treatments that the cult tried weren’t working. The father gave the child antibiotics and the child recovered. However, many cult members were upset by this – instead of experiencing joy at the child’s recovery – they said the antibiotics hurt the body’s immune system (as if pneumonia was better). The woman who told me this couldn’t tell me how it hurt the immune system, but she preached this anyway. Community members ignorantly preach about subjects they do not know or understand. They just blindly follow like lemmings! Probiotics anyone? They give alternative medicine a bad rap because they think they know what they are talking about. Actually they know very little on the subject of alternative medicine.
14. Twelve Tribes members cannot demonstrate physical affection to a member of the opposite sex unless they are married. And if you are married you are expected to show it in private. Community members are not allowed to have a boyfriend or girlfriend while living in the community. Then they wonder why their minds race so much with negative thoughts and feelings. They kill love and human nature so much.
15. Community members must follow their diet. Unless one has an allergy to a food or diabetes, then that member is expected to follow explicitly. I was rebuked for avoiding certain parts of the meal that I knew would bother my stomach. I never complained about it. I just improvised without saying a word, but it wasn’t good enough for them.
16. Twelve Tribes members must drink mate. Mate is an herbal alternative to coffee (caffeine) they sell. If you wake up when you’re supposed to and work hard all day without complaining and show no signs that you need mate, they still try to shove it down your throat.
17. Community members must change their names. At baptism they give the member a Hebrew name.
18. Community members are not allowed to listen to the radio or watch television. Twelve Tribes members can only listen to community created and sanctioned music.
19. Community members cannot place their hands in their pockets. At the spiritual gathering I felt comfortable putting my hands in my pockets. I was swiftly reprimanded.
Jun 12, 2015 — The 2015 Idaho Legislature passed a new parental rights bill that will become law July 1, 2015.It further strengthens the rights of parents that choose to let their children die unnecessary and painful deaths. Idaho still has a religious defense to manslaughter, neglect and murder. There are two websites dedicated to educating the public on the plight of children born into faith healing families in Idaho. We need to keep the pressure on Idaho lawmakers until they repeal these very harmful laws.It is important to share the links to these two websites to keep raising awareness that will help protect children’s rights in Idaho. idahochildren.org and childfriendlyfaith.org/projectidaho Both sites are updated regularly….. Thank you for your continued support.
HOME – CHILD ABUSE in IDAHO: Deadly & Legal
Child abuse in Idaho–the worst state in the nation for letting children die with religion-based medical neglect.
You may have heard the story a few months ago about an Atlanta-based minister who claimed he needed a $65 million private jet so he could “safely and swiftly share the Good News of the Gospel worldwide.” But almost as quickly as Pastor Creflo Dollar asked his 200,000 followers to each donate $300.00 towards the purchase of a luxurious jet, the campaign vanished and was removed from his website.
But now, the board of World Changers Church International — which also operates as Creflo Dollar Ministries, has announced it is ready to purchase the plane.
“We plan to acquire a Gulfstream G650 because it is the best, and it is a reflection of the level of excellence at which this organization chooses to operate.”
This has got to be one of the biggest shams ever, and there’s so much delusion it’s hard to even figure out where to begin.
Let’s start with the money. Imagine what could be accomplished with $65 million! That’s a lot of money. Do you think Jesus would have wanted his earthly representatives travelling the globe in luxurious accommodations? Or do you think Jesus would have wanted to see that $65 million used to feed the poor, help the homeless, improve education, or just make some kind of huge impact to help humanity?
World Changers Church International said, “A long-range, high-speed, intercontinental jet aircraft is a tool that is necessary in order to fulfill the mission of the ministry.”
Sure, who wouldn’t want such a nice aircraft to travel the world? I know I would and I bet you would, too. And if you’re one of the few people in this world who can afford one, go for it! But when you start hitting up your congregants — many of whom struggle with their day-to-day finances and barely have enough money to provide the basic necessities for themselves and their families — that’s when something has to be done.
What about flying commercially? Jesus travelled on foot and by donkey. Granted there were no Gulfstream G650s back in the day, but if there were somehow I don’t think you would have seen Jesus flying around in one. Dollar resides in Atlanta, the city with the world’s largest airport with flights to every major international destination on a daily basis. Certainly it would be more cost effective for his flock to do their work around the world this way.
But after all, God told him to buy the plane. Dollar said, “If I want to believe God for a $65 million plane, you cannot stop me. You cannot stop me from dreaming. I’m gonna dream until Jesus comes.”
I don’t know what’s worse: the fact that Creflo Dollar believes God spoke to him and told him to buy this jet, or the fact that people are so gullible and delusional and are actually supporting this guy. Of course, as Dollar puts it, it’s simply part of what he calls “prosperity theology,” in other words, giving of your own money to the church because by doing so your level of personal wealth is blessed and will grow significantly.
It’s not surprising, really, that people buy into this nonsense. After studying mental toughness training for the last 31 years, there’s a definite pattern of people who are operating from a weak state of mind to be more vulnerable to the suspension of critical thinking and doing anything that makes them feel better. Being addicted to the emotion of hope is a killer, so when Pastor Dollar tells them to give $300.00 and reminds them of the promise of everlasting life, a mansion in the sky and being reunited with loved ones, it sure sounds pretty good.
The bottom line: It’s time for people to wake up and stop being stupid! Stop being manipulated and giving your money to the power hungry religious leader who owns two Rolls Royce cars and multiple multi-million-dollar homes. Creflo Dollar is a fake. If he was so genuinely concerned about doing good and Godly deeds, he would be raising $65 million to truly make a difference in the lives of so many. Instead, he’ll be enjoying a better than first-class experience as he jets around the world in style laughing at the farce he created.