This website is intended for people affected by the Worldwide Church of God, Living Church of God, Philadelphia Church of God; or any other splinter group. However, these essays may be helpful to anyone who was once involved in a Bible-based cult.

Thursday, 13 March 2008

Herbert W. Armstrong and Interracial Marriage

Herbert W. Armstrong's views on interracial marriage were not at all a secret. I have found various sermons and written works by Armstrong that express a great deal of racism. The following collection of quotes is intended to illustrate how open Armstrong was about his racist beliefs, and how he enforced his prejudices upon members of the Worldwide Church of God.

"God originally set the bounds of national borders, intending nations to be separated to prevent interracial marriage. [...] Noah was of perfect lineage in his generations. His wife and three sons were of that same white strain."

Mystery of the Ages; H.W. Armstrong; pg. 149
"God intended to prevent racial intermarriages. But man has always wanted to violate God’s laws, intentions and ways. They wanted to become one race or family through intermarriage
of races."

Mystery of the Ages; H.W. Armstrong; pg. 151

Below, I have transcribed pieces of one of Herbert W. Armstrong's shockingly racist sermons. I have included a link the the audio of the entire sermon. He was 90 years old when he spoke these words. I have capitalized certain bits of text to note the volume of Armstrong's voice. Anyone who has heard a sermon by HWA will remember his bouts of screaming, when he was trying to make a point.

Apparently, what had spurred him to write this sermon was a letter, written by one of his followers.
[Click to hear a racist sermon by Herbert W. Armstrong]

"Today I want to speak on what may possibly be the very next attack that Satan will use against this church [...] interracial marriage."
"It was stated that the blacks in God's Church are dissatisfied with such doctrines that are not in keeping with the current social trend in the world [civil rights movement] that are a part of this nations background. [...] And this letter also says that they are trying to line up a group of blacks to give ME AN ULTIMATUM, that I get on the side of the social trend of this world, or else! I'll tell you what I'll give them, I'LL GIVE THEM THE 'OR ELSE!' (church audience laughs) I WON'T COMPRIMISE ONE MILLIONTH OF AN INCH! And if you will, you can go into the Lake of Fire if you want to. [...] Some are saying that we have to to have racial balance at ambassoders college. [...]"
"Genisis 6:1; And it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of
the earth, and daughters were born unto them,

Genisis 6:2; That the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were
fair; and they took them wives of ALL WHICH THEY CHOOSE."

"That's what they want to do today. A black man wants to take a white woman for a wife, THAT'S WHAT HE CHOOSES. [...] Now I don't know any cases where a WHITE MAN wants to marry a black woman, WHY IS THAT? Answer that for me! Why is it only BLACK MEN who want to marry white women?"
This is obviously a twist of scripture. Armstrong is trying to 'prove' his racist beliefs with the Bible. There is no mention in the Genesis 6 that God sent Noah's flood because of interracial marriage; nor is there any evidence that Noah was white. HWA himself declares this, but there is no evidence in the scriptures.

And why should 'the church' question him? He is God's end-time Elijah... GOD TALKS TO HIM (or at least that is what WCG members were told.) Going against Armstrong was like going against God, for members; leaving the church was the worst sin one could commit. Apparently, these are concepts that are found in many cults*.

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