The more time goes on, the more evident it becomes that some in the Church of God are involved in blatant idolatry. How can that be? It is because they have given up their responsibility to submit to the King of Kings rather than to other fallible human beings.
The ancient Israelites had freedom. God broke their bonds of slavery, and yet on more than one occasion they yearned to return to Egypt. They even rebelled and refused to enter the Promised Land! And so, that generation died in the wilderness, and their children entered in instead. Did they learn the lesson, though? Apparently not!
Time after time, they mixed their worship with that of the religions of the people of the land surrounding them. Time after time, they went back into slavery, only to call out to God and repent for a time.
After a while, they asked for a king.
The Churches of God, unfortunately, seem to be more than willing to look for a king. They crave and desire the “one man rule” even. Ironically, there is One Man Who is in charge: Jesus Christ! However, like ancient Israel, their rebellious hearts have hardened and they need that external power to exert control over their lives rather than asking Jesus to supply them the power to be willingly governed directly.
It is idolatry.
Time after time, we have seen the Tkaches, the Flurrys, the Weinlands, etc., all take advantage of this and lead people away from God. The first group, at least, has the honesty to not call themselves a “Church of God” any longer.
God cannot use anyone not submitted to Him in entirety. He will not force someone to obey (although He may make someone pretty uncomfortable!). Why? Because He needs willing participants in His family.
We need to always be mindful that we don’t place someone between us and Christ. While God does raise up leaders of various types and times, we must be careful to respect their position but realize they are still human. When they stop obeying God and it becomes obvious that the fruits of repentance are not there, it is time to re-evaluate the relationship with that leader.
That’s what many still don’t understand about the whole UCG-COGWA scenario. Certain leaders have taken power upon themselves and began to govern in ways that do not reflect the ways of God. Certain UCG leaders have been less than honest, less than transparent and treated others as less than a brother in Christ.
In the end, our allegiance is not to an organization, a group of men or even to some philosophy. Our allegiance is to be to God the Father and Jesus the Christ. Everything else must flow from that!
Otherwise, you are raising something or someone else to the level of God!