14 Responses to “Is Depression a Sin?”

  1. maiuuislandgirl says:

    John..after reading a particular person’s blog earlier this week, I have promised myself never to go there again..talk about being knocked down then kicked senseless!! that man has no mercy or compassion in him at all, and I shudder to think how harshly God will judge him for all the harshness and self righteousness he has so far displayed… and spewed the doctrine of a hateful God who has no love in Him and can’t wait to crush those who can’t live up to the perfection He models..Brethren who make the mistake of opening a “door” to their mind and allowing his brand of so called teaching will soon become fearful and very afraid.. always ” looking over their shoulder” for the ” hammer ” to fall . it is so anti God and in my opinion, brethren should avoid him if they value peace of mind and spiritual soundness..

  2. maiuuislandgirl says:

    as for the subject of depression..it seems to come to everyone at one time of their life or another..it can be tied as you said , to events in our lives..sickness, death, and other earth shaking things..I agree with you, that when one of the “members” are suffering, we are told to comfort and encourage them..that what draws us closer together, having care and concern for other brethren. as for having “post Feast Depression” why wouldn’t we..at the Feast there is joy, fellowship and love for 8 days..we experience what the WT will be like and we rejoice! after leaving, we come back to a world that is “broken” and no matter what human beings do, it can’t be fixed..and because we live in this broken world, we experience the hardships and pain, sometimes because of the suffering of unconverted relatives or because of our beliefs..Christ didn’t ask for us to be taken out of this world, but to keep us in the Father’s name and from the evil one..we like the Israelites in Egypt who suffered through the first 3 plagues will suffer till Christ returns..we understand this but as was said ” the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak” I think we all pray for more spiritual strength to withstand what is coming as the end draws near and to help the little ones who might falter.

  3. Andrew says:

    Wow. I completely missed that (I don’t give him much thought these days–I might skim some posts every few days, but that’s about it).

    If anything, I’m shocked by those that don’t come home feeling some post-Feast letdown. The Feast is such a spiritual high, and being around brethren that you don’t get to see often, and getting that vision… Reality is a cold, hard smack. It definitely impacts the younger generation as most of us are isolated from our friends and the Feast is one of the few times that we can be around like-minded peers and see those whom we’ve developed close bonds with. Beyond that, as none of us are perfect, it’s never fun getting home and finding that the Old Man got there first and is waiting on the couch for you.

    It amazes me that he could twist something that everyone can relate to and understand and turn it to his agenda. Though maybe I shouldn’t be shocked. It is his modus operandi.

  4. Big Red Big Red says:

    This doesn’t quite fit, and I don’t remember the exact quote. But HWA said that if you slip and fall, Jesus doesn’t kick you the road; He helps you get back up. While HWA was talking about sin, of course, I think the same principle applies. We’re walking down this long road together. If somebody falters, how do you treat them? It shows how much you really care about them.

    I’m not sure whom you guys are talking about. Malm? The same thing could be said of Flurry. They lose as many people as they have coming in. That’s why the PCG keeps churning sand.

  5. Norbert says:

    Curiously, I just did a google search on “cog post feast blues”. This blog was is in the results along with other cog sites. The second result that turned up was a UCG article on the topic. It is entitled “Stay in the Feast Mindset all Year Long”. It has an encouraging tone with a fair bit of practical advice. Compared to Malm’s writing where he emphatically accuses many in the cogs as revealing themself to be selfish in their actions.

    If it weren’t for people sometimes feeding him legitmate issues that normally wouldn’t be publicized anywhere else, I’d wouldn’t be visiting his blog as much as I do.

    What if it’s only a vocal minority?

    • John D says:

      @Norbert: The choice to look up an unnamed blog is your prerogative. I can neither stop you nor cause you to do so. My mission to point out false teachers and their false teachings has not changed.

      However, most of all, I disagree with both your definition of “legitmate issues” and the idea that countering anyone’s lies constitutes feeding anything to such an individual.

      • Norbert says:

        Sometimes people from the major cogs do contact him and offer him information about issues. Occassionaly that information is relevant in making a judgement and coming to a conclusion about where they should stand on the matter. For instance the events occuring in the UCG prior to Cogwa’s formation.

        Will you confirm or deny that your blog topic here is in response, even in part, to what James Malm wrote?

        • John D says:

          @Norbert: I would have hoped by now that you would understand that pointing out false teachers is of limited value. If people stop going to one, they will undoubtedly become ensnared by another. Pointing out the falsehood of their teachings, however, equips a person to see the deception no matter the source.

          HWA unfortunately allowed high ranking ministers to create an organization somewhat based upon his personality. How that came about is not the point, but it was an obvious mix of various human weaknesses both within him and his inner circle. It is the main reason that some outside WCG considered it a cult, while the current splinters are less likely to be labeled as such (of course, the word “cult” is both overloaded and with differing definitions, but I am referring more to the negative connotation rather than the theological definition).

          When HWA died, the immediate appeal of Joe Tkach was to HWA and his “18 truths”. While nothing would have seemed out of order by doing so at the time, hindsight forces us to see clearly that it was a ploy to lay the groundwork for changes to later come (consciously or unconsciously, I should add).

          Because of the focus of personality rather than doctrine, how many were fooled into changing? If they truly had a love of the truth and not an admiration for a man, could they have easily been fooled?

          When Gerald Flurry left, was it over doctrine? He claimed it to be so, didn’t he? However, whose doctrine? God’s or HWA’s? Did he sue WCG over the use of the Bible, or over the words of a dead man? Flurry only hangs onto power because he put HWA up on a pedestal. Once a man became the center of focus, it was easy for him to slip into the limelight to be that man.

          I could keep going, couldn’t I? The COG landscape is full of people who get away with what they do simply because there are people who will gravitate towards personalities rather than the truth.

          There is the saying, “If the shoe fits, wear it.” If this applies to Malm, then let the shoe color be evident to all. To center the attention upon a man overly much detracts from the real message that there are spiritual Amalekites out there who would gladly wound and kill the weakest amongst us. Which is profitable? Pointing out one Amalekite or pointing out how to identify characteristics of many Amalekites?

  6. Todd Sauve Todd Sauve says:

    Hi John,

    I went to Malm’s site after reading a few of the comments but did not find anything relating to what you are saying in this post. So I am assuming that it is not Malm that you are speaking about this time, but I may be wrong.

    I never read anything on Malm’s site anymore. I actually quit after only a few visits because he is obviously a fellow looking for a following, and he does so by concentrating on virtually every burp (or whatever) coming from the Middle East and relating it to prophecy. But also by criticizing virtually every little misstep he perceives any COG organization of making. He is not helping anyone to grow spiritually by doing these things. He isn’t really interested in that. He just wants attention and whatever money he can talk people into giving him.

    I hope he will grow up but I doubt this will happen. When we decide to set ourselves up as THE judge (criticizer) of the churches, we step well outside the boundaries God sets for us as disciples. It is fine to acknowledge mistakes and offer constructive criticism but this does not appear to be what he is interested in. He wants to be a POWERFUL spokesman for a large number of church members.

    Thus, it seems to me, our best way to help him is to ignore him. Perhaps God will step in and correct him.

    Personally, I think if you removed the link to his site from the top of your blog site, it would be a huge step forward in dealing effectively with him.

    I understand that people like him can be a burr under our saddles but giving him more attention on this website is just that: Giving him more attention.

    An occasional criticism is OK but I think you are perhaps too attentive to his postings.

    Just my observations. :)

    Todd Sauve in Calgary

    • John D says:

      Todd Sauve wrote: “Personally, I think if you removed the link to his site from the top of your blog site, it would be a huge step forward in dealing effectively with him.”

      Good point. I’ll remove it now.

  7. Todd Sauve Todd Sauve says:

    Oops! I see that it is Malm who wrote a column on the PFBs. Oh well, I’ve spoken enough about him. :)

  8. maiuuislandgirl says:

    John..a good friend ( an elder’s wife) informed me that about 60 people went to Canada to keep the Feast with Malm, brethren from All the COG groups, even two from Flurry incredible as that might seem. Ministers are beginning to look at Malm with ” new eyes” as in.. a spiritual danger to their congregations..that being said..I agree with you , that it is more important that brethren are warned ( as spoken in God’s Word) to be aware of the “characteristics” of those who are false teachers, who claim to come in His Name and represent Him. If we are spiritually aware we will be forearmed and forewarned, able to “discern” the falsehoods and the deceit. Each of us are responsible for our spiritual health in the end,but against satan, we need all the help from brethren and especially from the Father and Christ..As one Minister said, those whom the Father has called at this time ( and He knows who they are) have one shot at this calling..there is no other left to us..I am not saying that all who have been in God’s church and have left are “lost”, but that the Father knows Who He has called and Who has answered and are now held responsible for this “calling” Those of us who feel that He has given us this Calling need to do all we can to insure our success with the help of Christ and the Father, because in the end, it is OUR RESPONSIBILITY.

    • John D says:

      @maiuuislandgirl: I admit I did not know about him having a Feast site this year. I thought he was shooting for next. Either way, it’s been obvious for some time that he wants to start his own church. Only the very blind would not see that.

      Having said that, those who might view him as “competition” says more about any given ministry than it does about him. A spiritual danger, certainly, but that too can be taken too far. God sifts and sorts, and He knows who is His own. That does not mean that God will not warn those who are lost, but it is also true that you cannot lose anyone or anything that was not yours to begin with.

  9. Andrew says:

    It is my understanding that the elder’s wife is mistaken in that statement. Malm made it clear many times that he was not setting anything up for this year (as he didn’t plan for it, but expected to flee this fall), but would start next year with the DUB and FoT and has been heavily making plans for that. I think this is misunderstood in that Malm went and kept the Feast in some location with his son (and likely with another COG group as he’s apt to do), and that there’s about 60 people in a secret Facebook group of acolytes.