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Getting On : Faith

Don't Throw the Baby Out With the Bathwater

from Pete - Monday, February 03, 2003
accessed 1503 times

Many young people who grew up in the Family have rejected Christianity due to the negative influences they were exposed to in the Family. True Christianity is a far cry from the religion the Family practices.

Greetings! My name is Peter Harnisch, and I am a 26-year-old man who grew up in the Family.
I would like to urge all young people who, like me, grew up in the Family, not to discard Christianity because they had negative experiences in the Family. The doctrines that the Family taught us are not Christianity.
For one thing, nowhere does the Bible condone the deviant sexual practices promoted by David Berg and later by Karen Zerby. Fornication is prohibited many times in the New Testament. Nowhere in the New Testament is Christ's work of redemption on the cross construed as a license to sin, as Berg, Zerby and others have made it to be. Romans 6: 1 and 2 says, "Shall we continue to sin, that grace may abound? God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?" In the Book of Revelation, Jesus, speaking to the church at Pergamos, rebukes them for holding the doctrine of Balaam, who taught the Israelites to commit fornication, and warns them to repent or be punished. This shows that the Lord does not tolerate or encourage sin in his church.
Furthermore, Berg was, and now Zerby is, heavily into spiritism, or communication with the dead. The Bible warns against this. It is an occult practice, one of the "curious arts" which Christian converts turned from in Acts 19:19. Many Christians believe that involvement in spiritism opens the door to demonic influence. "This wisdom descends not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish Ö But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruit, without partiality and without hypocrisy. And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace by them that make peace. " (James 4: 15-18)
And finally, the contradictory "revelations" given to Berg and Zerby were considered to be the very word of God, on par with, or superseding, the Bible. But the Bible states that the Scriptural canon is now closed. "If any man shall add unto the words of the prophecy of this book, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book". (Revelation 22:18)
In conclusion, I urge you not to throw the baby out with the bathwater. What was forced upon you growing up in the Family was not real faith. Real faith is a matter of your free will. Many ex-family members credit their relationship with Jesus (the real Jesus, not the sex god Zerby paints him out to be) for seeing them through the period of difficulty when they left the Family. It helps to see true Christianity modeled by Godly people, without the trappings that the Family added. I have had the privilege of living with a godly Christian couple who demonstrate their faith not only through word, but also in deed. I hope that you, too, will meet a godly role model who can encourage your faith.

Reader's comments on this article

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from GG
Tuesday, January 17, 2006 - 03:37

Amen. For once a post with a message worth reading.
(reply to this comment)
from Arneth
Monday, January 16, 2006 - 16:14

Amen, I heartily agree. Actually, I am grateful to the Family for emphasizing love of Jesus and the Gospel, even if they didn't always preach that Gospel. I can honestly say that I acquired a deeper faith in Christ when I left.
(reply to this comment)
from Jovi.
Friday, February 07, 2003 - 21:09

You might be right, but not all of us are looking for a godly role model to follow or onother christian grup to belong to,in fact i believe that religion is not good for one cause makes your mind a bit square and can limite your view on things never the less i still belive in Jesus and have him very close in my life but not religion or christianity.But I guess if your happy with your christians friends, good for you!
(reply to this comment)
from anovagrrrl
Tuesday, February 04, 2003 - 17:56

One of the main reasons I prefer reading this board over other COG-related sites is that the contributors don't seem to be preoccupied with discussing their religious beliefs.
(reply to this comment)
from Anthony
Tuesday, February 04, 2003 - 15:24

I don't discard Christianity (and all religions for that matter)because of the family. That would be too simplistic and irrational, truth and fact are not based on emotionalism. I reject religion because it is false, irrational and otiose.

Anyway, I guess I can sorta undertsand your apparent need to deliver your "soul" (?) to us, but as you very well know we've heard enough of this rubbish and don't care to hear anymore.
(reply to this comment)
From JohnnieWalker
Tuesday, February 04, 2003, 23:32

Anthony, I've been to this site and I must say that I've had a very good laugh -- not from the supposed flaws that whoever wrote the commentaries claims the Bible contains, but from the sheer ignorance this person (group of people?). It became painfully obvious that he/she is narrow-minded and didn't take historical events, traditional legends and archaeological findings into account.(reply to this comment
From JohnnieWalker
Tuesday, February 04, 2003, 23:37

I might add to this, that while I myself am still consolidating my beliefs (or lack of them) and do not accept much of what is written in and about the Bible at face value, I prefer to have my information come from a reliable source.(reply to this comment
From Anthony
Wednesday, February 05, 2003, 15:18

I hear ya, and Ii'mglad that I'm not the author of that site; I would've done a better job. BTW, since the Bible is the original cornerstone of Christianity, if it isn't reliable,it isn't, what does that say about Christianity? Hope to see you soon, take care.(reply to this comment
from Anthony
Tuesday, February 04, 2003 - 14:50

Shouldn't this whole section be in the Trailer Park?
(reply to this comment)
from Anthony
Tuesday, February 04, 2003 - 14:29

Umm, excuse me, but isn't communicating with Jesus communicating with the dead?

hA, Ha, ha, HA,
(reply to this comment)
from TimR
Monday, February 03, 2003 - 19:01

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
I don't personaly believe in religion, and as far as God goes I'm an agnostic. But I would have to agree with you that it's not fair to judge Christianity by our experiences in the Family.

However, I think you may have to realize that a lot of the hostility against religion comes from people's encounters with the so-called righteous out here in the system, not just the Family. The sad fact is that there are a lot of really hateful right-wing Christians here in the US, (just go look at and they give the rest of you a bad name.
(reply to this comment)
from dave
Monday, February 03, 2003 - 18:24

I honestly donít mean any offense here Pete, but I just wonder why do some people feel it's a bad thing to reject religion? Is it really that bad that people decide that they will no longer believe in fables and questionable ancient writings found in the Bible and other religious books? Why do some people still feel they have to reach out to "unbelievers" like myself from a beautiful life free from hypnotizing, confusing, contradictory, and infectious man-made belief systems nicely called religions? I respect the millions of people who feel they need religion or some form of it, but I donít share their mindsets.


(reply to this comment)
From dave
Monday, February 03, 2003, 18:28

That should have read:

"Why do some people still feel they have to reach out AND "SAVE" "unbelievers" like myself from a beautiful life free from hypnotizing, confusing, contradictory, and infectious man-made belief systems nicely called religions?(reply to this comment
From Anthony
Friday, February 07, 2003, 15:35

Have Dave,how about you get a backbone? (reply to this comment
From roughneck
Monday, February 03, 2003, 21:41

hear hear dave

L.(reply to this comment
from JoeH
Monday, February 03, 2003 - 18:24

oh God, not this topic again!
(reply to this comment)

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