Letter to all of God’s Scattered Church
March 29, 2014
Hello brethren in Jesus Christ,
I Gary Stowers feel the need to write this letter to all of God’s scattered sheep that truly does love the true Christ and our Father in Heaven. Brethren I love God with my whole heart, and I love all of his children in Christ. Because of my love for you, I felt the need to let God use me to give all of us some wise instruction and even correction in certain areas of our lives where we may need it. I don’t set myself up as some lord over Christ’s body, but because of God’s love in me for you all; I can’t just keep quiet, and let things slide that I know are detrimental to the overall spiritual health of God’s scattered flock.
Brethren as you all well know; we have all been pushed out of the church organization which God used Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong to form while fulfilling his role in God’s end-time work of preaching and publishing the true gospel to this world, which Jesus also preached and taught to his apostles and disciples. Mr. Armstrong had appointed Joseph W. Tkach to be the next Pastor General to lead the Church after his death. Joseph W. Tkach, proved himself to be like Judas Iscariot, and betrayed Christ and his body, the church, and began forcefully commanding the teaching of Satan’s false doctrine to Gods children. He also systematically destroyed the truth out of that organization and turned it into a Synagogue of Satan. This process began small and seemingly insignificant at first; but it gained momentum, and continued through several years until he finally became bold enough to force the brethren to completely apostatize, or leave that organization, which was not any longer a Horn of Christ, but was simply now a Synagogue of Satan. All through this process brethren who stood up for the truth, and tried to warn and wake up their brethren, were cast out of that organization.
Satan wanted to hang on to the church brethren as long as he could until they were awakened and started to warn others; so that he may deceive them, and cause them to slowly, and gradually apostatize their selves away from Christ and his true teachings. Satan’s goal is not to just destroy our flesh but to cause us to destroy our selves spiritually. Satan hates God and his Children. If Satan can cause us to grieve God’s Spirit that is in us long enough, we may eventually lose God’s Spirit altogether. Satan’s goal is the same today as it was in the days of the inquisition; to cause God’s saints to turn our backs on the true God and his word and Holy Spirit. If Satan can cause us to apostatize, then he knows that God will not be able to reproduce himself in us, and we would be destroyed forever.
As Gods saints one by one, and a few here, and a few there began to wake up and leave that deceitful organization, or stand up and try warning other brethren, and end up being cast out of that evil organization, which is what happened to me; then Gods people became scattered physically with no true shepherd to keep them united with each other physically or in knowledge of truth and doctrine. This also left the flock very vulnerable to Satan’s efforts to turn them to believe and teach heresy among their own selves. I have much to say about this subject also, but first I have to mention more about the beginning of Laodicean Era, or the Laodicean Horn of God’s church and the “Messenger” to that age of God’s Church.
Brethren I strongly recommend that all who desire the truth, that you would read my writing titled “Just what do you mean Church Eras”. One point that I want to make clear: The Laodicean Church Era or Horn did not begin when Mr. Armstrong died, and Mr. Tkach took over as Pastor General. Mr. Armstrong referred to the seven different churches in Revelation chapters 2 and 3 as being representative of seven time-eras or ages of the one true Church of God. He was correct in this, but also as I pointed out in my above-mentioned writing; these, seven church ages, had administrations of government which, were administered by certain men which God raised up and used to give overall leadership and direction to Gods ministry and the whole body of Christ in that age. These men are symbolically spoken of in Revelation chapter 1 as stars that are in Christ’s right hand. They are explained in verse 20 as being the seven angels of the seven churches. Mr. Armstrong correctly taught that these angels were men which were used by Christ to lead God’s people. As he pointed out the word which is translated from the Greek word (aggelos) to angel in English, is a word which can mean a real spirit angel or a human messenger from God, or a pastor of the church. (Look this word up in Strong’s Concordance and Dictionary of the bible.)
Now when God gave an evaluation, warning, and instruction to each age of the Church of God, he addressed his message directly to his servant which he holds in his right hand to accomplish his leadership to the whole church of that era. God is very concerned with how each individual saint is living and behaving in his own personal life; but here in Revelation chapters 2 and 3, God directly addresses his words to the man which God has chosen to be his messenger to that era or Horn of the body of Christ. Remember brethren a horn is symbolic for an organization of government. Christ has seven horns which God caused to arise in succession after he was slain (Rev. 5: 6).
It seems that in this Laodicean age that many brethren seem to think that God didn’t send a single messenger to this age of the church, for the purpose of giving overall leadership and direction to the body of Christ, as he did in all other eras of the Church. These confused people seem to assume that when Tkach turned the World Wide Church organization away from Christ and his teachings, that the organization became Laodicean; and people just became Laodicean, and that these scattered people are whom the message of Christ is directed to, and assume that there is no real single messenger to the Church of the Laodiceans as is described in Rev. chapter 3, verse 14. Brethren this is not true. Mr. Tkach did not turn the WCG into the Laodicean Era. Tkach turned that WCG organization into a synagogue of Satan. God did send a Messenger to raise up the last Horn or organization of government to provide direction and leadership to the Church of the Laodiceans; which is the church brethren who have been driven out, or cast out of the Synagogue of Satan. The Message in Revelation chapter 3 and beginning in verse 14 is for all of God’s saints to read and understand and be corrected by, but God addressed this message directly to the leader or Messenger whom Christ was holding in his right hand, and had used to form the final church government of this age, the Laodicean Horn of Christ.
Many of the members of the Church of God didn’t recognize the raising up of this Laodicean organization because they were still slumbering and sleeping in the Synagogue of Satan, which was actively working to destroy the truth out of that World Wide organization, and put the brethren into a deeper sleep by not truly feeding them the true words of God. The WCG ministry was not truly refreshing God’s saints. Mr. Tkach didn’t turn the World Wide Church organization into the Laodicean Church. What he did do was turn the World Wide Church organization into a Synagogue of Satan which was used to try destroying Gods people spiritually by persuading them to compromise with the true doctrines and way of living of Christ, and gradually get them so far away from God and Christ that they could eventually be destroyed by the final thrust to apostatize, and follow in Satan’s teachings. Many were destroyed spiritually, and many more have been confused and made vulnerable to the wolves in sheep clothing that are gobbling them up in their own organizations for their own carnal self-gain, and to the spiritual hurt of the brethren.
Now brethren I need to make you aware of when and how, and by whom God used to raise up the Laodicean Horn of the body of Christ. When Satan began using Mr. Joseph w. Tkach to start watering down the “World Tomorrow” television broadcast, and the presenters began using the carnal philosophers, educators, and doctors of this world to be their authorities behind their message; then that was the beginning of a gradual plan to start getting away from God and his divine authority, and his powerful gospel message. In a very careful and well thought out plan Satan used Tkach and his “yes men” to gradually begin eroding the truth from all aspects of the World Wide Church of God. Most of the brethren seemed to be like the proverbial frog that gets boiled in a pot of water that the temperature is gradually increased until he is dead without becoming aware of the rising temperature and jumping out. These brethren were asleep as Jesus says of the virgins in Matthew chapter 25. By being asleep, the brethren of the church were not close to God and didn’t realize it. They had let the cares of this world, and their carnal relationship and fellowship with other brethren become a replacement for having a truly good and close spiritual relationship with God.
Brethren we need lots of heartfelt prayerful time talking with our heavenly father in order to be awake spiritually. Brethren I pray on my knees to God, but also I like to just go off alone in some private place such as a mountain, a good fishing place, a cemetery, or any other private location and I just humbly talk to God in similar manner as a young son might do with his dad or Grand Dad. I enjoy it and am sure that God our Father also enjoys our talks. He inspires me and gives me some of my best understanding, during these fellowships. I am always strengthened by God when I spend time with Him alone.
Brethren I am reminded of something that someone told me years ago about how to get a Parrot or Parakeet to communicate with you. If you want to have the bird draw near to you, then you need to only have one Parrot. If you put two or more Parrots in a cage, then they will be drawn to have a close relationship with each other, and not with you. If the bird has no other bird friend, then it will be more likely to draw near you and will learn to communicate with you. Brethren God wants us to have a good relationship with each other, but if we allow ourselves to let our fellowship with each other replace our real need to be close to our Father in Heaven then we may feel somewhat satisfied that we are good Christians because of our relationship with other brethren, but we will be lacking a close intimate relationship with God our Father. If you will notice, many if not most of the great men of God mentioned in the Holy Bible, were men that spent a lot of time all alone with God. If we desire to be filled with the Holy Spirit of God, then we need to draw near to our Father in heaven. This is one of the good fruits that has come about in some brethren’s lives since God has allowed us to be scattered. Like Jeremiah in the dungeon; who could he be close to except God? Look at Elijah; he was all alone physically but he was very close to God. Look at Moses when he was fleeing for his life from Egypt, and his eventual shepherd life; only God was his best friend. Because of him being filled with the Holy Spirit, he was still very much alone even when he was leading carnal-minded Israel in the wilderness. But God was with him mightily, because Moses drew near to God. Brethren you can fellowship with other brethren and enjoy a good relationship with each other of like mind; but if you really desire to be filled with the Holy Spirit so that we may truly fulfill the will of God in our lives; then we must devote a lot of time in sincere heartfelt, honest talk and meditation with our Heavenly Father. Be still and listen with your mind and heart to the instruction, reproof, and even correction that our Heavenly Father will give us from his Spirit and word that is in us.
Brethren I realized that I have digressed a little from what I was talking about, but I believe that God wanted me to say those things to you. Now I will tell you about how the Laodicean Horn of Christ was raised up. When it became evident to a minister in the Oklahoma City area that the Tkach leadership was going astray from the true teaching and direction of the word of God back in 1989; he received information from another minister in California and began writing a letter or booklet of reproof to the Church administration, which he talked about with some of the other ministers and brethren. This teaching of his and his writing was leaked to the church administration. This minister was called to give an account of what he was writing and teaching which was considered as insubordination even before he was finished with it and ready to reveal it to others. This Minister is Gerald Flurry. He thought that some of the top evangelist and leaders of the church would think like him, and maybe do something to correct this obvious departure from God’s way and teachings. He was wrong; none of the evangelists were willing to risk their jobs, salaries, and reputations in the eyes of their peers to take a stand for the truth and the brethren against their boss, Joseph Tkach. They were looking to men instead of trusting in God. So as a result, Mr. Flurry standing up at that time was viewed by the fellow ministers as a foolish mistake. God didn’t view it that way, because someone in the ministry should have the guts to stand up for God and his Word, and for the brethren. We also need to remember that those ministers were being given refresher programs, and pastor general reports that the rest of us church members were not yet given. It was obvious to Mr. Flurry and should have been obvious to the entire ministry that Mr. Tkach was beginning a very evil work against the truth, and against God’s people.
As a result of Mr. Flurry taking a corrective stand against Mr. Tkach and his partners he was fired along with his assistant Mr. John Amos. God knew that Mr. Tkach was given over to Satan, and was going to gradually and systematically destroy the truth and the true way of living out of that Church organization, which was known as the World Wide Church of God. God knew that Satan was the one left in charge in the WCG and that that organization was now a Synagogue of Satan, even though Many brethren and some ministers that did truly love God were still attending that organization’s church services and activities. They were mostly asleep and deceived into looking to men in that organization, instead of looking primarily to God and Christ. God was allowing all of this to test the ministry, and also to test all of the brethren in the Church of God.
Now after Mr. Flurry was disfellowshiped; God used him to raise up another organization of leadership and government to provide a place for the brethren to resort to when they woke up to the evils that were being done in that Synagogue of Satan organization. At first Mr. Flurry seemed humble, and started the work of trying to deliver a message of warning to the brethren to wake up and realize the evils that are being done against the truth, and the brethren who love the truth. He considered this work to be delivering a knock on the doors of the brethren’s hearts from Jesus Christ, as is mentioned in Revelation 3 and verse 20. Those of us who were truly and deeply in love with Christ and his true gospel and way of life; we were angered at the evil that was taking place in the WCG. After each Sabbath, it seems that we had been angered by the new teachings and perversions being pushed on God’s people. Those of us who were spiritually awake enough to realize what was going on, and desired the real truth and way of God; we were glad when Mr. Flurry finally got our attention with his knocking work. The whole Church was sleeping and slumbering to a great degree, but when we saw the evil that was being done against the Word of God, and his Bride, we woke up and started to help wake up as many of our brethren as we could. The problem was that many of the brethren and professed brethren were not really being led by the Holy Spirit, and they rejected our warning and Knock. Many of these brethren began turning us into the ministry and getting us kicked out of that Synagogue of Satan before we could even have a chance to warn very many of our brethren. Satan caused our brethren and pastors to hate us as if we were the evil ones.
God had used his Messenger to the Laodiceans to raise up the next Horn of Christ which is Laodicea. God had given him the commission of warning Gods true Church which was still fellowshipping in the Synagogue of Satan organization that they needed to wake up, and come out of that Satan led organization and come over to the new organization which God had used him to raise up, where they were promised the true doctrines would be taught. Mr. Flurry didn’t realize that he was used in raising up the Laodicean Church organization, so he just called it the faithful Remnant of the Philadelphia Church of God. He also didn’t at first realize that the World Wide Church of God was turned into a synagogue of Satan, so he taught that the World Wide Church organization had been turned into the Laodicean Church which was not true. The WCG organization was turned into a synagogue of Satan. The brethren were spiritually asleep and lukewarm in their relationship with God, but they were not all willfully following Satan either, as was that “Judas”, Joseph Tkach, and some of his fellows.
God did want to test all of his people and sort out the tares from the wheat and wake the people up spiritually before it is too late. To do this God let Satan loose on the Philadelphia Church organization just like he did when he turned Satan loose on Job. Then God raised up his Laodicean Horn by Mr. Gerald Flurry and intended him to preach the truth, and warn these many brethren in the WCG to wake up and answer the knock of Christ on the doors of their hearts, and come out and join with him in re-gathering Gods faithful saints who still love the real truth into the new organization.
Mr. Flurry did have some weaknesses and misunderstandings of his own but he did start out in a rather humble condition of only 12 brethren that stood with him at first. Those of us who were glad that there was a church organization which we thought would continue in the truth that we loved; we came into this new group with gladness and began helping to warn our brethren that we loved in the WCG. As time went along Mr. Flurry seemed to become more and more infatuated with his own self, and his prophetic ideas and began twisting the scriptures to try and make them appear to be speaking of much of the evil that was going on in the WCG. It was very deceitful though because we could see that the evil abominations that he was talking about were in fact taking place in the WCG, but the scriptures that he used were oftentimes not speaking of what he said they were. Flurry would read a certain portion of scripture and not accept the true meaning of the scripture as it is revealed in its own context; but he would say “it all revolves around,” and then he would give his personal opinion that he wanted to try and make the scripture support. Satan had also come into the new organization, and Mr. Flurry was letting Satan use his own pride and vanity against him. Mr. Flurry began exalting himself, and claiming himself to be a prophet. In reality, much of his prophecy was not founded in truth, but rather in his own vain imagination.
To make a long story short, the leader of the Laodicean Church organization also became lukewarm, neither hot nor cold. He held on to most basic doctrines, at least in written form, if not in-deed, but the false teachings of prophecy, and twisting, and interpreting of scripture according to his own imagination caused many to realize that he also was going astray from Christ. When a brother in Christ would talk with him or another minister to try and help him see that he was wrong on something that he had been teaching; then that brother would be condemned and disfellowshiped if he didn’t force himself to get in agreement with Flurry. The love of God and his truth, and the love for the brethren, was not as important to him, as was his own personal vanity and self-glory. Satan had gotten to the messenger whom God had sent to lead the brethren out of the Synagogue of Satan and into the new church horn, Laodicea.
When time had passed and many more brethren were becoming disgusted with the false teaching of the WCG, which is, in reality, a Synagogue of Satan; then they were leaving that organization, but would not even consider following Flurry, partly because of his false teachings and lack of true Godly love for the brethren. Also the Ministers who were leaving and trying to run ahead and get in front of the flock, so that they could live off of their tithes; they had made sure to convince the brethren not to follow Flurry, but they were just as far off course from truly following Christ. Many of them were guilty of fighting against the brethren, and casting them out who had gone to the PCG and Flurry. Since there was such a mass exodus from the WCG, and the hope that there would be a flock to support them; these ministers were finally willing to leave that Synagogue of Satan; but they weren’t willing to humbly face those brethren whom they had cast out, and admit that they had been wrong in treating them as some evil person; so they had to form their own church organization, or follow some other minister or evangelist who was forming his own organization. The organizations that they formed were not Horns of Christ. Christ didn’t use them to build those democratic governments. There were many brethren that did still have some of the Spirit of God in them that went with these Evangelist and ministers, but the organization was not formed by Christ but by men who had already compromised much and grieved God’s Spirit. They were guilty of casting out many faithful brethren who only wanted to continue in the truth which they learned to love, and were converted to.
As a result of this whole apostasy of the ministry of the Church of God, God’s flock has been scattered and divided among the wolves which seek to use them to build their own personal empires in this world. Many brethren have finally concluded rightly that none of the organizations or their leaders are truly following Christ, so they have chosen not be a part of any group or organization claiming to be Christ’s true church.
The Messenger that God sent to build another church organization or Horn of Christ and to gather his flock away from the Synagogue of Satan has been miserably failing in his duties. He has let Satan get to him primarily through his pride and vanity, and selfish greed. The message that God and Christ gives to the angel of the Church of the Laodiceans is directed specifically to him. That message is given to help all of us in this Laodicean era to realize that we can’t put our trust in any man or organization, but that we should open the door of our hearts to our Lord and master when he knocks and gets our attention with his word, and correction. If Mr. Flurry had been faithful to the true word of God, and humbly taught only the truth, then many of the brethren would have eventually came into that organization when all of the other splinter organizations failed as they were destined to do. Because they didn’t believe in God’s form of government, but founded their organizations on the democratic way; which left room for disagreement, strife, and division with no single righteous servant having authority to keep things on track in that organization. As a result they have split many times.
As a result of all of this unrighteousness in the ministry that was at one time leading spiritual Israel under the leadership of Herbert W. Armstrong; they are now not qualified to lead any of God’s flock, and God’s flock are scattered and feeding themselves according to the best of their own understanding. Some are doing fairly well, but many are not. This situation has made it very easy for brethren to get off into believing and teaching heresies. When there is no righteous Messenger in the right hand of Christ to lead and direct the teachings of God’s Church, then everyone will just do as the Israelites were doing after the death of Joshua; “every man doing what is right in his own eyes.” This is the perfect breeding grounds for heresy to begin creeping into the beliefs and teachings of God’s people.
In this Laodicean age there is no physical man who is totally submitted to Christ, and has the authority from God to lead the church; a man that the people could look to for leadership, and who truly is humble and loves the truth, and loves the brethren enough to unite the Church in all of its teachings and doctrines. In this also we are being tested. Will, we truly submit to the written word of God and the Holy Spirits lead, so that we are not inventing heresy and teaching it as fact? I have noticed that some of the scattered brethren seem more interested in trivial ideas and speculations which they teach than they are in the real important plain facts of God’s word. I suppose that these things will continue among the brethren until God gives supernatural power to his two witnesses, so that there will be no denying whom God has approved to represent him before all of his people. At that point, God will also begin showing the entire world who is faithfully speaking for him as his witnesses.
Brethren you can be sure that our merciful and wise God will not allow the great tribulation to come upon the nations of Israel without also revealing to them who his true witnesses are. God wants his people to be corrected, not just destroyed. If the true brethren of God’s Church don’t know what man God has approved to lead and teach his people, then how could the nations of this world know unless God reveals it to them, as he will do with his two witnesses? Brethren the Great Tribulation is going to cause an innumerable multitude of people from all nations to fear and repent and turn to the true God. (Rev. 7: 9-17) How would they ever know who is speaking for God in this confused and evil world unless God Miraculously reveals his power in his two witnesses?
Brethren did you ever consider that this is the main purpose for God giving that kind of power to those two men which are also called prophets? Study the work of these two witnesses, and understand that they are given power after the order of both Moses and Elijah. These men will not just be miracle workers, but they will be speaking the truth of God to the people. They are mentioned in Zechariah chapter four as individuals who will be emptying the golden oil (Holy Spirit) out of themselves. These men will be teaching the word of God and be backed up by the power of Almighty God!
Brethren God will not leave his people without a true leader to show them what God does require of them during the Great Tribulation, but the question is: Will the scattered Church be so deceived by heresy that they will reject Gods servants? Are we willing to give up our own personal pet ideas which are often heresy? Brethren, heresy divides God’s Church. We each should be very careful not to accept anything as fact until it is proven plainly by the word of God. If it is truly proven by God’s word then it should be easy for all truly sincere and converted brethren to come to the same conclusion, but if it is not completely proven by the word of God, then it is left to our own opinions and they will differ, creating division.
Since there is no righteous and faithful messenger to the Church of the Laodiceans; it behooves us all to take extra care that we carefully prove all that we believe and teach by the written word of God so completely that there is no room for any honest Christian to doubt. Brethren we should do all that we can to make sure that we are not believing or teaching heresy. God will hold each of us accountable. Brethren it is my belief that most heresy that is taught, is started out by someone who is careless with accepting his own opinion and interpretation of the scriptures. Satan will use our personal weakness of vanity against us in this area, by causing us to think we are wiser and more understanding, and knowledgeable than we truly are. God help us to see and repent of our vanity before we allow it to cause us to mislead our brethren with heresy! If we, with God’s help, are able to realize that we have been deceived into believing and teaching heresy; then we should humbly repent before God, and also before those we have mislead, and stop our private interpreting of the scriptures. Brethren it does not require some desperately evil person to begin teaching heresy; but we are all likely to do this if we are not very careful. What we should all truly desire is the plain truth, which can easily be proven to be the truth by God’s written word, and without having to rely on our personal interpretation of any scripture.
Brethren I will close this letter, and I hope it will be helpful to the scattered body of Christ, the true Church of God.
Your brother in Christ,