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Author Topic: deeper life and scriptural interpretation  (Read 68673 times)
outdeep
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« Reply #15 on: September 24, 2005, 10:06:39 pm »

Brothers in the assembly were taught to excercise tyrannical control over their wives to the point of being lieterally abusive. I remember being in California at the home of a couple, I think the names were Brad and Verlie and was flabbergasted at the way her ordered her to quit what she was doing and go get something that he needed.

It was unspeakably vulgar and disrespectful the way he said it and I could tell his poor wife (they had been recently married) was totally humiliated. She nevertheless obediently complied. It was evident that his sole pirpose was to demonstrate to all present that he was large and in charge.
Brad if you read the BB and you still treat you wife that way, I doubt she will stick around- she seemed like a brght person.
Verne
 p.s Which of your Fullerton mentors did you learn that kind of rudeness from?
I remember a couple's meeting based upon a talk by Danny and Kimber.  They were set up as a model of how to give consequence to your wife when she didn't perform what you wanted.

I remember driving on our second anniversary with my wife to go to breakfast.  I was trying to hedge her in to the standard (which was given to her by one of those helpful "training mothers") of telling our infant son to "come" ten times a day.  For me, this would be a simple matter because i am very much a linear/checklist thinker but I couldn't pin her down to doing this and the conversation got tense.  She felt I was bagering her and I felt she was being rebellious by "muddying the waters" of the conversation.  It accelerated to some sharp words until Loretta got out of the car in anger and I found myself driving around the Knotts Berry Farm parking lot with Nathan in his car seat thinking to myself, "this technique isn't working well."

I learned over the years that the issue was not her rebellion against the standard but her feeling of being threatened and overwhelmed with people coming into our home and imposing their methods of child-rearing.  Loretta (as well as myself) has her baggage and issues, but these things are better faced in an atmosphere of patience, example, forgiveness and encouragement.  Years later, we have become more of a team and we know how to discuss and implement strategies for our kids in a way where neither mom or dad feel threatened.  Both of us changed and grew in areas of weakness but the change never came about due to heavy-handed techniques.

This incident was one event that was the beginning of the end of our Assembly years.
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outdeep
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« Reply #16 on: September 24, 2005, 10:23:56 pm »

When we attended the one assembly meeting I have gone to since leaving, right after GG's fall, Caryl did not wear one, and I didn't ask her to.  But if we were visiting a PB assembly it would be, to my mind, the courteous thing to do.  We are not the only bears in the woods.  Other people have feelings, sometimes very strong feelings.  Submitting to legalism is something we shouldn't do.  But wearing defiance as a flag is only necessary in the presence of real evil, not just another interpretation.
One of my last memories of my maveric Uncle was when I went to a relatives Bar Mizvah.  He was arguing with the usher at the synogogue because he wanted to wear his cowboy hat instead of a yarmulke.   Grin

« Last Edit: September 24, 2005, 10:27:49 pm by Dave Sable » Logged
vernecarty
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« Reply #17 on: September 25, 2005, 03:35:58 am »

I remember a couple's meeting based upon a talk by Danny and Kimber.  They were set up as a model of how to give consequence to your wife when she didn't perform what you wanted.

I remember driving on our second anniversary with my wife to go to breakfast.  I was trying to hedge her in to the standard (which was given to her by one of those helpful "training mothers") of telling our infant son to "come" ten times a day.  For me, this would be a simple matter because i am very much a linear/checklist thinker but I couldn't pin her down to doing this and the conversation got tense.  She felt I was bagering her and I felt she was being rebellious by "muddying the waters" of the conversation.  It accelerated to some sharp words until Loretta got out of the car in anger and I found myself driving around the Knotts Berry Farm parking lot with Nathan in his car seat thinking to myself, "this technique isn't working well."

I learned over the years that the issue was not her rebellion against the standard but her feeling of being threatened and overwhelmed with people coming into our home and imposing their methods of child-rearing.  Loretta (as well as myself) has her baggage and issues, but these things are better faced in an atmosphere of patience, example, forgiveness and encouragement.  Years later, we have become more of a team and we know how to discuss and implement strategies for our kids in a way where neither mom or dad feel threatened.  Both of us changed and grew in areas of weakness but the change never came about due to heavy-handed techniques.

This incident was one event that was the beginning of the end of our Assembly years.


What boundless grace and mercy God bestowed on this poor and wretched sinner, that it was not my lot to either court or get married in the assemblies.
I really admdire the couples who have come out of that system and had the courage to re-evaluate all that they had been taught and reject the unScriptural.

GIVING YOUR WIFE CONSEQUENCES??!! DID GEORGE EVER GIVE BETTY A CONSEQUENCE??? Oh I forget, she was the "godly" Betty....
The only relationship in which the Bible sanctions "control" is that of a parent with a child...but then again, that is exactly what the problem was was it not?
Verne
« Last Edit: September 25, 2005, 03:44:35 am by VerneCarty » Logged
Oscar
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« Reply #18 on: September 25, 2005, 07:26:34 am »

Verne,

In what was probably my last telephone conversation with GG, I corrected him on the use of the word "consequences".  I told him that a the consequence of an action is something that flows out of the action taken.  If you get drunk you fall down.  If you don't go to work you get fired.

I told him that what the assembly was advocating was punishment of adults.  I asked him to show me a place in the Bible where the leaders of a church ever punished anyone. 

He replied that "the Bible is full of consequences."  I said, "Yes, but they are the judgements of God upon nations and rebellious individuals.  That is God's prerogative, not man's."   

El Supremo didn't like it much...but what could he say?  Roll Eyes

Thomas Maddux

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grown up
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« Reply #19 on: September 25, 2005, 07:33:44 am »

What boundless grace and mercy God bestowed on this poor and wretched sinner, that it was not my lot to either court or get married in the assemblies.
I really admdire the couples who have come out of that system and had the courage to re-evaluate all that they had been taught and reject the unScriptural.

GIVING YOUR WIFE CONSEQUENCES??!! DID GEORGE EVER GIVE BETTY A CONSEQUENCE??? Oh I forget, she was the "godly" Betty....
The only relationship in which the Bible sanctions "control" is that of a parent with a child...but then again, that is exactly what the problem was was it not?
Verne


Amen for God's mercy. Giving a consequence to an adult let alone my wife   Huh My wife is wonderful If I ever had thought about giving her a "consequence"  wow.
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vernecarty
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« Reply #20 on: September 25, 2005, 12:27:46 pm »

Verne,

In what was probably my last telephone conversation with GG, I corrected him on the use of the word "consequences".  I told him that a the consequence of an action is something that flows out of the action taken.  If you get drunk you fall down.  If you don't go to work you get fired.

I told him that what the assembly was advocating was punishment of adults.  I asked him to show me a place in the Bible where the leaders of a church ever punished anyone. 

He replied that "the Bible is full of consequences."  I said, "Yes, but they are the judgements of God upon nations and rebellious individuals.  That is God's prerogative, not man's."   

El Supremo didn't like it much...but what could he say?  Roll Eyes

Thomas Maddux



El Supremo was a master physchologist Tom. The man had perfected a system for destroying people's liberty in Christ.
Who in their right mind would want to be accused of being unentreatable or rebellious?
What poor schumucks we were, never having the wisdom to recognize and understand that this was all a relevant matter only in the case of constituted authority. Tom you are so right that none of us ever stopped to think and ask of these men:
Who gave you the authority to give me a consequence?

Of course the answer was....we did...!   Cry

The fact that George had the gumption to claim for himself apostolic authority, whatever that was, should have been enough to cause many more of us to stampede for the door.

I remember when Jim Tucker in Champaign became head steward and tried to give me consequences (with Kurt Green's blessing) we really got into it.
I think my reaction was that of any healthy, self-respecting adult and I don't understand why more folk did not tell head stewards to take their consequences and shove it.
The fact that spouses were encouraged to behave like this, and did, is nothing short of astonishing.
And these were people some of us admired....!
I guess it was the price one paid for preparing to be fleeced...er, that is for the "work"
Verne
« Last Edit: September 25, 2005, 12:31:51 pm by VerneCarty » Logged
Oscar
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« Reply #21 on: September 26, 2005, 12:22:43 am »

Verne,

Quote
Tom you are so right that none of us ever stopped to think and ask of these men:
Who gave you the authority to give me a consequence?

Of course the answer was....we did...!   

The fact that George had the gumption to claim for himself apostolic authority, whatever that was, should have been enough to cause many more of us to stampede for the door.


An important question is why we gave GG such authority in our lives.  Actually, GG just utilized ideas most of us already shared. 

Such as:

1. The modern church should operate just like the NT church.

2. The NT church did not hold elections.  Leaders were appointed by divinely appointed apostles.

3. Therefore we need to discover who God has given this authority to today.

Now, the question arises of who has that authority today.  Here is where the popular mysticism proved our undoing.  We ignored, at least until the pain level became high enough to get us thinking again, the Biblical information about apostolic qualifications.  Personally appointed by Jesus, miraculous power and so on.

Instead we paid attention to subjective standards such as "annointing" and "vision."  Annointing meant something like "This excites me and makes me feel energized, humble, hopeful or whatever.  It was primarily emotional/subjective.

GG, imagining himself to be a great mystic, visionary, annointed one, "special" servant of God, quickly began to claim "apostolic authority"

Why not?  Did the Lord not give him special promises?  Special insights into scripture that others could not see?  Was not his success in attracting young followers a divine confirmation of his annointing?

That is how he saw himself. Seems  to still do so.  It is also how many of us saw him as well.

When I began actually reading about the appointment of real apostles, real apostolic ministry, and the passages about false apostles, my view of GG changed.

When I went over to Steve Iron's house to tell him I had left the assembly, I knew I would not get a real hearing of any detailed reasons.  Nor would I be allowed to defend my decision in detail.

So I summed it up as follows: "This ministry is founded on a false mysticism." 

Many of those who have seen through GG's claims still accept most of the mystical ideas he based his claims on.  For my part, I am very careful about buying into any ideas that cannot be clearly taught from scripture.

Blessings,

Thomas Maddux
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vernecarty
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« Reply #22 on: September 26, 2005, 03:30:37 am »

Verne,

An important question is why we gave GG such authority in our lives.  Actually, GG just utilized ideas most of us already shared. 

Such as:

1. The modern church should operate just like the NT church.

2. The NT church did not hold elections.  Leaders were appointed by divinely appointed apostles.

3. Therefore we need to discover who God has given this authority to today.

Now, the question arises of who has that authority today.  Here is where the popular mysticism proved our undoing.  We ignored, at least until the pain level became high enough to get us thinking again, the Biblical information about apostolic qualifications.  Personally appointed by Jesus, miraculous power and so on.

Instead we paid attention to subjective standards such as "annointing" and "vision."  Annointing meant something like "This excites me and makes me feel energized, humble, hopeful or whatever.  It was primarily emotional/subjective.

GG, imagining himself to be a great mystic, visionary, annointed one, "special" servant of God, quickly began to claim "apostolic authority"

Why not?  Did the Lord not give him special promises?  Special insights into scripture that others could not see?  Was not his success in attracting young followers a divine confirmation of his annointing?

That is how he saw himself. Seems  to still do so.  It is also how many of us saw him as well.

When I began actually reading about the appointment of real apostles, real apostolic ministry, and the passages about false apostles, my view of GG changed.

When I went over to Steve Iron's house to tell him I had left the assembly, I knew I would not get a real hearing of any detailed reasons.  Nor would I be allowed to defend my decision in detail.

So I summed it up as follows: "This ministry is founded on a false mysticism." 

Many of those who have seen through GG's claims still accept most of the mystical ideas he based his claims on.  For my part, I am very careful about buying into any ideas that cannot be clearly taught from scripture.

Blessings,

Thomas Maddux

Tom you are making a powerful case with reagard to "false mysticism" and I must say that I am very much in agreement with 99.99999 percet of what you are saying here.
I would only make this minor distinction. George's mysticism was "false" in the sense that it was not necessarily powerless, as it was counterfeit.
I am not about to throw out words like "annointing", and "vision", and "miraculous", because of a man like George Geftakys.
These are real terms, and in fact can apply to the ministry of true servants of Jesus Christ.
You cannot sit under the ministry of men like Jim Cymbala and Ravi Zecharias and deny the presence of "annointing" "visison" and "power" in their lives, and countless others.
I would in fact argue that it is exactly because these things are real, that George was able to convince us that they applied to him personally.
This is the distinction that I think fuels much of the differences that you and I have had on spiritual matters.
There is no one who can convince me that George Geftakys did not have real power, and it was more than just a strong personality. That man was a false prophet/teacher in the truest sense of the word, and that meaniing that he had an illegitimate source for the spiritual power he displayed.
Pharoah's magicians did the same thing.
I believe all of those affected by this man need to clearly understand this point.  Not to do so is to I think miss the lager lesson of our past failure ih this reagard.  It is the reason I have made such a strong case for the culpability of spiritual leadership, in allowing a man like George Geftakys to rise unchallenged.
That post was awesome Tom.  Wink
Verne
 
« Last Edit: September 26, 2005, 05:57:09 pm by VerneCarty » Logged
2ram
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« Reply #23 on: September 26, 2005, 03:31:55 am »

Verne,

An important question is why we gave GG such authority in our lives.  Actually, GG just utilized ideas most of us already shared. 

Such as:

1. The modern church should operate just like the NT church.

2. The NT church did not hold elections.  Leaders were appointed by divinely appointed apostles.

3. Therefore we need to discover who God has given this authority to today.

Now, the question arises of who has that authority today.  Here is where the popular mysticism proved our undoing.  We ignored, at least until the pain level became high enough to get us thinking again, the Biblical information about apostolic qualifications.  Personally appointed by Jesus, miraculous power and so on.

Instead we paid attention to subjective standards such as "annointing" and "vision."  Annointing meant something like "This excites me and makes me feel energized, humble, hopeful or whatever.  It was primarily emotional/subjective.

GG, imagining himself to be a great mystic, visionary, annointed one, "special" servant of God, quickly began to claim "apostolic authority"

Why not?  Did the Lord not give him special promises?  Special insights into scripture that others could not see?  Was not his success in attracting young followers a divine confirmation of his annointing?

That is how he saw himself. Seems  to still do so.  It is also how many of us saw him as well.

When I began actually reading about the appointment of real apostles, real apostolic ministry, and the passages about false apostles, my view of GG changed.

When I went over to Steve Iron's house to tell him I had left the assembly, I knew I would not get a real hearing of any detailed reasons.  Nor would I be allowed to defend my decision in detail.

So I summed it up as follows: "This ministry is founded on a false mysticism." 

Many of those who have seen through GG's claims still accept most of the mystical ideas he based his claims on.  For my part, I am very careful about buying into any ideas that cannot be clearly taught from scripture.

Blessings,

Thomas Maddux

Don't know what this is doing under headcoverings, but here goes.

Tom,

It looks like you (and Joe) are stuck because of your fear of the "mystical".

It looks like you believe that you have the final word on anything "mystical".

It looks like you believe that the reason for your departure applies across the board.

With all due respect, I would say that it was more of matter of an intellectual acknowledgement of the twisted Scriptures fed to us by GG and his servants, and because we were no longer sensitive to the Spirit's leading, that kept so many of us in bondage for all those years.

2r
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vernecarty
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« Reply #24 on: September 26, 2005, 05:45:42 am »


With all due respect, I would say that it was more of matter of an intellectual acknowledgement of the twisted Scriptures fed to us by GG and his servants, and because we were no longer sensitive to the Spirit's leading, that kept so many of us in bondage for all those years.

2r

The fact of the matter is, even with George's persuasive rhetoric, he stood exposed by the plain witness of the Scriptures as a false teacher.
The problem was that many people who got involved with this man only heard him speak, but did not see how he lived. Workers and leading brothers don't have that excuse. There is no way they could justify association with a man like this, and encouraging others to do so, when his conduct was compared with the Scriptural standard.
Verne
p.s. People who handle the Word of God deceitfully will always get exposed, whether you are a Jimmy Swaggart,  a Jim Bakker or a David Hocking. That is why it is a two-edged sword. God had exposed the corruption of George's family to those around him long ago. They simply tolerated and excused it.
« Last Edit: September 26, 2005, 05:53:26 pm by VerneCarty » Logged
Oscar
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« Reply #25 on: September 28, 2005, 02:16:08 pm »

2ram,

you said:
Quote
Don't know what this is doing under headcoverings, but here goes.

Tom,

It looks like you (and Joe) are stuck because of your fear of the "mystical".

It looks like you believe that you have the final word on anything "mystical".

It looks like you believe that the reason for your departure applies across the board.

With all due respect, I would say that it was more of matter of an intellectual acknowledgement of the twisted Scriptures fed to us by GG and his servants, and because we were no longer sensitive to the Spirit's leading, that kept so many of us in bondage for all those years.

2r

1. It really isn't a good idea to attempt to judge the character of another person based on bulletin board posts.  A hour's conversation over a cup of coffee contains far more information than dozens of postings.  I wouldn't say I fear mysticism. Rather, I am very skeptical about mystical claims.

Folks who advocate mysticism seem to feel that it is sufficient to make the claim, then demand that the other person disprove it if they can. 
That is not the case at all.  The burden of proof is on the person making the claim.  That is why I have repeatedly asked people to actually give examples of the knowledge of the scriptures they claim they have received from God.  So far, the only replies I have received have to do with what a bad person I am for asking, but not a shred of actual information. 

2. Regarding GG's "twisting" of the scriptures.  The twisting was cause by GG's mystical approach to the Bible.  For example, Matthew 18:20-

For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them. (KJV)

For GG, this was the scripture that validated his assemblies as the One True Church.  He focused on the phrase, "are gathered".  What he understood it to mean was that a true "expression" of the church could only be found where Christ himself had gathered the people together in his name through an annointed servant.  He would then honor that gathering with his presence in a way that other gatherings of Christians lacked.

There are several problems with this understanding of the passage.
a. The context concerns disciplinary action in an already existing church, not the founding of a local church.
b. The passage says that Christ will be present with those exercising the discipline, not with the whole church.
c. The phrase "are gathered" merely describes the state or condition of the persons gathered, not the means by which they were gathered.

In other words, the information GG took out of the passage has nothing to do with the actual context, words, or grammatical construction of the passage.  Instead, his claim was based on his greater" illumination of the scriptures by the Holy Spirit". 

In other words, his claim was based on mysticism!   You may have given intellectual assent to his teaching and so have been kept in bondage....but the foundation of his teaching was his mysticism.

Blessings,

Thomas Maddux
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2ram
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« Reply #26 on: September 28, 2005, 05:31:40 pm »

Hi Tom,

Don't know what character judging I did by stating how it looks to me as a reader.

It kind of goes like this:
Harry tells of his experience of faith and Gods goodness.  Tom and Joe agree and then go, "yeah, but.... 'long cautionary dissertation of being careful of the mystical'".

The original post that I commented on, you make some very good points.  It was the concluding statement,
.....
Many of those who have seen through GG's claims still accept most of the mystical ideas he based his claims on.  For my part, I am very careful about buying into any ideas that cannot be clearly taught from scripture.

Maybe "overboard" might be a better word to use instead of "very careful".

Marcia aka 2ram
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vernecarty
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« Reply #27 on: September 28, 2005, 05:58:40 pm »

In other words, his claim was based on mysticism!   You may have given intellectual assent to his teaching and so have been kept in bondage....but the foundation of his teaching was his mysticism.

Blessings,

Thomas Maddux

Tom your repeated use of the word "mysticism" to describe those who have a different view of matters than you do smacks of condesension. As Christians, our standard is not whether something is mystical or not, it is whether or not it is Scriptural.
I get the distinct impression by the way you employ the term that it is your intention to contemn the other view, not refute it.
I think it would be far more helpful to your reader to explain why you think a stated view is unBiblical rather than using the pejorative mantra of "mysticism."
I realise that you think recognizing the error of mysticism was the  key to your deliverance from George's errors and so you are probably motivated by a desire to aid others in that regard.
The simple truth is that the men around George were disobedient to the plain teaching of Scripture, not smitten by some supposed mystical notions, that enabled George to inflict the destruction that he did. Trying to blame what happened on mysticism just muddles the issue in my view..  Smiley
Verne
« Last Edit: September 28, 2005, 06:14:16 pm by VerneCarty » Logged
Joe Sperling
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« Reply #28 on: September 28, 2005, 08:14:52 pm »

Marcia----

Concerning your post below---I would remind you that George often spoke of his
"experience of faith and God's goodness". He'd speak of God's great work during
his journeys abroad. He'd speak of experiences he had in his life. He spoke of a dream
he had where a book appeared called "The Acts of His Apostles"--he literally believed
he was an "apostle" in the sense of being sent by God to set up churches.

I think if there is anything we should all learn from having been in the Assembly IS to
be very careful concerning what people claim to have "experienced", or a "special
word" they have been given from the Lord. It was "not" being careful which led me into
the Assembly, and accepting someone else's "experiences" that kept me there in many
ways.

Many people are sucked into cults for the same reason. And much of the faith healing, charlatan
TV evangelists rely on "experiences", and "words from the Lord". They are fond of saying "and I
felt in my spirit", or "I saw in my spirit". I am not saying that God cannot heal, or cannot give
experiences, but I think being careful about what you believe or accept as being from the Lord
is very important. I understand what you mean about going "overbaord"(though I don't believe that
is happening)--we don't want to become so cynical or skeptical that we believe God does nothing
at all in the way of supernatural things. But we do need to be very careful.

Being careful to make sure things are in Biblical context is VERY important. For example, I could
quote "Be careful for nothing, but in all things let your requests be made known onto God..." and
say "See--the Lord says not to be careful about what we do, or what we accept, or what we hear".
But the true context is not to be "anxious about anything". On the contrary, the "Noble Bereans" studied to make sure "everything" they were hearing was coming from God and agreed with the
Scriptures. Were the Noble Bereans going "overboard" when they put even Paul to the test??  Paul
praised them for doing so.

--Joe


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Oscar
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« Reply #29 on: September 28, 2005, 08:25:46 pm »

Verne,

Quote

Tom your repeated use of the word "mysticism" to describe those who have a different view of matters than you do smacks of condesension. As Christians, our standard is not whether something is mystical or not, it is whether or not it is Scriptural.
I get the distinct impression by the way you employ the term that it is your intention to contemn the other view, not refute it.
I think it would be far more helpful to your reader to explain why you think a stated view is unBiblical rather than using the pejorative mantra of "mysticism."
I realise that you think recognizing the error of mysticism was the  key to your deliverance from George's errors and so you are probably motivated by a desire to aid others in that regard.
The simple truth is that the men around George were disobedient to the plain teaching of Scripture, not smitten by some supposed mystical notions, that enabled George to inflict the destruction that he did. Trying to blame what happened on mysticism just muddles the issue in my view..  
Verne

Webster's Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary says" mysticism 2: The belief that direct knowledge of God, spiritual truth, or ultimate reality can be attained through direct experience, (as intuition or insight)."

That is the word for what I was talking about in my post to 2ram.  We were not discussing the men around George.  We were discussing how George Geftakys interpreted the scriptures. I pointed out to her that George claimed to have knowledge about the meaning of scripture that no one could obtain from the text.

I am not using the word as some kind of put-down.  It is the current name used in English for what I am trying to describe.  If you know some synonymous term that you would find less offensive, please inform me what it is.

I am not saying God cannot communicate directly to a human being.  I am saying that George used mysticism, (sorry), as an interpretive method, and that he based much of his teaching on this.  He also copied many things from other folk's mystical interpretations of the Bible as well.

2ram,

You say I am going "overboard", meaning, I believe, "too far" or "too extreme" in my attitude.  Fine, please state what the correct position is.  Make a positive argument for your own position.  If I have gone too far, just how far is far enough?

Thomas Maddux
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