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Armstrongism, World Wide Church of God, a Brief

Updated on August 7, 2007

Changes Wrought by Passing of Founder

Herbert W. Armstrong (1892-1986) founded the Worldwide Church of God (WCG) in 1934. He was an early pioneer of radio evangelism, taking to the airwaves in the 1930s from Eugene, Ore. He later founded Ambassador College and the Ambassador International Cultural Foundation, which promoted the arts, humanities, and humanitarian projects. Upon his death the church left his beliefs, for the most part, but splinter groups still follow him.

Some of these groups, often former WCG members, who still follow Armstrong's traditional teaching produce The Philadelphia Trumpet magazine, Malachi's Message, Key of David TV program and others.

Their concepts of God include one infinite, eternal God. Traditional Armstronism denies a tinity, defining God as a "family of individuals." However, in 1995 WCG leaders officially accepted a Trinitarian concept of God and now accept biblical beliefs.

Their concepts of Jesus is that Jesus is God incarnate (in human form). Armstrong suggested that Jesus would return to earth in 1975. Groups following Armstrong's original teachings (Global, Philadelphia, and United Churches of God) say Jesus was not resurrected physically and that is the only one who has been born again. WCG believe that Jesus was raised spiritually and physically. Per Armstrongism the Holy Spirit is an impersonal force. Per WCG the Holy Spirit is God, the third person of the Trinity.

Salvation is by grace (the unmerited favor of God). Whereas Armstrong followers must recognize Old Testament sabbath days, feast days, and dietary prohibitions, such as no pork or shellfish, WCG has abondoned these beliefs.

Per Armstrongism resurrected believers will live on the new earth. Unsaved will face judgement.

Groups like the Philadelphia Church of God and Church of God International still hold Armstrong's views such as deity for mankind, no immortality of the soul, no literal hell, no medical treatment, and Anglo-Israelism. Since Armstrong's death, WCG, which was formerly very cultic, has undergrown many changes toward more traditional biblical views.

By 1968, Garner Ted Armstrong, (the son of Herbert W. Armstrong) was the voice and face of the new television version of The World Tomorrow. It was speculated that with his charisma and personality, he was the logical successor to Armstrong. However, in 1972, the son had been removed from church roles over doctrinal disagreements. He was reinstated, but soon after that he again openly rejected several doctrines and the church government structure, which would lead to him being excommunicated by his father in 1978. Garner Ted moved to Tyler, Texas where he founded the Church of God International and the Garner Ted Armstrong Evangelistic Association, through which he would soon return to the television airwaves. Garner Ted Armstrong died in 2003.


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    • profile image

      mbock paul janvier 

      6 years ago

      Here is How Eliyah will restore all things (Matth 17:11), Before the coming of Yeshua Messiah (Jesus-Christ) (Mal 4:5-6; Act 3:19-21) !

      (NB: All in this document is translated from French, so excuse for the approximate English)

      "Prove all things and hold fast to that which is good" (1Thes 5:21)

      God says in the Bible: “Do not keep the prophetic words of this book (the Bible) a secret, because the time is near.” (Rev 22:10).

      With the help of the Holy Spirit (Jn 14:26; 16:13-14), God shows us today, the work Elijah has to do, just before the coming of the Great Tribulation and the Day of the Lord!

      (A) What are the Things to be restored, according to the Bible?

      1) The Kingdom of God on the earth

      Since the fall of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, God’s Kingdom governs no more the mankind.

      *Gen 3: 22-23: “Then the Lord God said,’ now the man has become like one of us and has knowledge of what is good and what is bad. He must not be allowed to take fruit from the tree that gives life, eat it, and live for ever. So the lord God sent him out of the garden and made him cultivate the soil from which he had been formed.”

      NB: So, God’s Kingdom has been removed from the earth after the sin of Adam; but very soon, God will restore it through His Nation which will be born in a day, like a mustard seed, after the coming of the son of man who is Elijah (Ez 2:3-5; Luke 17:22; Mal 4:5).

      *Matth 13 :31,38 : « The Kingdom of the heaven is like a mustard seed that a man takes and sows in his field…The field is the world; the good seed is the people who belong to the kingdom.”,

      *Isa 66:8: “Has anyone ever seen or heard of such a thing? Has a Nation ever been born in a day? Zion will not have to suffer long, before the Nation is born.”

      *Dan 2:44: “At the time of those rulers the God of heaven will establish a kingdom that will never end.”

      *Luke 12:32: “Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father is pleased to give you the Kingdom.”

      *Matth 10:7,23: “Go and preach, ‘The Kingdom of heaven is near…you will not finish your work in all the towns of Israel before the Son of man comes.”

      NB: It’s clear here that, the Kingdom of God will come, when the Son of man, who is Elijah, will come!

      The coming of God’s Kingdom is closely linked at the coming of Elijah, who must restore all things Before the day of the Lord.

      2) One Language

      *Gen 11:1: “At first, the people of the whole world had only one language and used the same words.”, but God mixed up their language at the Tower of Babel , so that they couldn’t understand one another (V7).

      Since there, the whole world has many and many languages; but as it occurred the day of Pentecost, at the foundation of the Church of God (Act 2:1, 4), a miracle of language will happen the day the Nation of God will be born: All those of the little flock who will belong to the Nation of God, will talk only one language, the language of Millennium!:

      *1 Pet 2:9-10: “But you are the chosen race, the King’s priest, the Holy Nation, God’s own people…at one time you were not God’s people, but now you are his people.”

      *Hos 2 17: “I will remove from her mouth the names of Baal.”

      *Zep 3:9: “Then I will give to the people – it will be a change – a pure language, so that they all pray to me, and serve me by mutual consent.” (N.W.T.)

      : “On that day I will purify the lips of all the people, so ,that everyone will be able to worship the Lord together.” (N.L.T).

      3) Israel ’s kingdom or the House of David

      After the death of Solomon, son of David, Israel’s kingdom fell into two kingdoms, as God announced to the prophet Ahijah (1 Kings 11:29_36 ;12:12-19).

      However God has promised David that, at the end of the times, one of his sons (descendants) will restore his kingdom like it was long ago:

      *2 Sam 7:12-13: “When you die and are buried with your ancestors, I will make one of your sons king and will keep his kingdom strong. He will be the one to build a temple for me, and I will strengthen the throne of his kingdom for ever.”

      *2 Sam 7:18-19, 25: “Then the king David went into… Lord’s presence…and prayed: ‘…yet now you are doing even more, Sovereign Lord: you have made” promises about my descendants in the years to come…And now, Lord god, fulfil for all time the promise you made about me and my descendants, and do what you said you would.”

      *Am 9:11: “The Lord says: ‘A day is coming when I will restorer the kingdom of David , which is like a home fallen into ruins…? I will rebuild it and make it as it was long ago.”

      *Ps 89:33-35: “I will not stop loving David or fail to keep my promise to him. I will not break my covenant with him or take back even one promise I made him. Once and for all I have promised by my, holy name: I will never lie to David.”

      NB: So, the descendant of David, who will restore his kingdom at the end of the times, would only be Elijah, the son of man who will restore the kingdom of God ; because, in fact, God’s Kingdom is and will be always in the hands of David’s descendants:

      *2 Chr 13:8: “Do you really think you can stand against the Lord’s kingdom that is given to David’s descendants?”

      *1 Kings 28:5: “...He (the Lord) chose Solomon to rule over Israel , the Lord’s kingdom.”

      So, the coming of God’s kingdom is the restoring of Israel ’s kingdom, which will be ruled, for a short time by Elijah, the son of the man, a descendant of David, until the coming of Christ.

      *Zec 6:12-13: “Tell him that the Lord Almighty says, ‘Here is the man (son of man) called the Branch. He will branch out where he is and build the Temple of Lord . He will build the Lord’s Temple and receive royal honour, and will rule as a king from his throne. He will also serve as a priest from his throne, and there will be perfect harmony between the two.”

      NB: Elijah, the son of man, the descendant of David, will be both king and priest; he will hold two offices that must not get interruption:

      *Jer 33:17-18: “I, the Lord, promise that there will always be a descendant of David to be a king of Israel and that there will always be priests from the tribe of Levi to serve me…?”

      NB: The throne of David is at the present time occupied by Queen Elisabeth II of England (Ephraim), and the Stone of crowning is in Scotland .

      The Bible predicts a fourth and last reversal of this throne at the end of the times:

      *Isa 28:1-3: “Ephraim (the kingdom of Israel ) is doomed! Its glory is fading like the crowns of flowers on the heads of its drunken leaders…The Lord has someone strong and powerful…who will come like a hailstorm… The pride of those drunken leaders (of Ephraim) will be trampled underfoot.”

      *Jer 13:18: “Say to the king and his mother, ‘Come down from your thrones and sit in the dust, for your crowns will soon be snatched from your heads.”

      *Ez 21:26-27: “I, the Sovereign Lord, have spoken. Take off your crown and your turban. Nothing will be the same again. Raise the poor to power! Bring down those who are ruling! Ruin, ruin! But this will not happen until the one whom I have chosen…Then I will giver it to him.”.

      NB: So, the throne of England (Ephraim), which is David’s throne, will be given for a moment to a man, Elijah (Zec 6:12-13) before Christ comes and takes it definitively (Luke 1:32-33).

      This throne of David will be snatched from England , and given to the descendant of David, Elijah, who will sit on it at the Safety Place , in the upper mountains of Galilea, especially in Mount Hermon :

      *Ez 34:11-14: “I, the Sovereign Lord, tell you that I myself will look for my sheep a

    • h_blunck profile image

      Henrik V Blunck 

      7 years ago from Kalundborg - Denmark

      If you want more information about Armstrongism, I would recommend visiting my hubpage entitled "Armstrongism" found here:

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Praise the God,

      Greetings and blessings from Pakistan,

      Dear brothern,

      I am a Dr, and pastor Shahid naveed from Pakistan , I have been running a prayer group for last few years, for this , , we are required prayers of yours to extend this Gods work, for more and more in Jesus serve ,we are required church affiliation with your( International ) church, for encouragement in Lords work , please keep us in your prayers. And so do help in these matters, in Jesus name,

      Your brothers and sister in Christ.

      Pastor Shahid ,

      Pastor bushra,

      Pastor yaqoob,

      Pastor shafique,

      And prayer group, and translation team,

      Email ,



    • profile image


      8 years ago

      I'm really curious if it is true that Herbert W. Armstrong claimed to be the Apostle of Christ named David , and did his teaching's to his followers with the intention to lead them to a special place during the time of Rapture, where they would be the only one's saved? Could you answer me this, because just currently another religious group that was currently under a state wide search that was apprehended with holding very small children doing what some say a sucide plot amongst themselves in California, all on National Media new's which they called a Cult Group stated that one of the distinction's between these religious type groups is there's always a leader claiming to be one of the Apostles of Christ,which is called a Cult. Thank You,have a Blessed Day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • bobm288 profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago

      Well is it too much to ask for you to set us straight on the truth? That is what we are here for, that is to learn and educate, and certainly not to be told we are all wrong and not even be told why and where we are wrong. Nor to be rudely told we are all wrong and "use our minds" whatever that means. And do you believe that just because Armstrong said it, it thus must be the "straight facts"?

    • profile image

      Former member 

      9 years ago

      Get your facts straight before you quote something like this. Many things you claim here are very much in error as to what Mr. Armstrong taught. As in his words " use your minds"


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