Sunday, January 8, 2012

The Institute of Higher Learning

New Testament Christian Church places great emphasis on the preaching ministry. We discussed the attitude toward the “Foolishness of Preaching”, and its effect upon the group’s outlook. But the full weight of this dogma cannot be felt until the church member begins to earnestly seek God’s will for their life. Many faithful Christians are drawn to a deeper commitment to Christ without always knowing what they “can do to help.” The natural urge of the new Christian is to tell others about salvation through Jesus, yet the endless variety of methods by which the message may be conveyed is drastically constricted by NTCC. Receiving as a concrete restriction the fact that God chose preaching (simple declaration) as his method, they miss Paul’s point that man’s philosophy, man’s wisdom, man’s “so-called” science, are unequal to the task, and that salvation depends upon the dual activity of the Spirit and the Word. Unable to see this, they subject to mockery all unconventional ministries, relegating the abilites and personalities of a majority of people to the trash heap.

  If you seek a means to be a mere Christian, to find a vehicle by which to serve the lost and impart to them the gospel in your own way through the abilities and opportunities that God has given you, you will be totally on your own if you attend NTCC. They are not concerned with your desire to win souls unless those souls get involved in “The Last Hope On Earth”. They do not care about your one-on-one personal efforts to help people spiritually. They do not ultimately care about your next door neighbor who has cancer until that person is in the pew and paying tithe. What good are all your efforts, all your prayers, if that person you are helping goes to some other church? They only want you to GET THEM IN CHURCH. And that means THIS CHURCH. They want their full participation. They want their tithes and offerings. They want their attendance and their two legs going door-to-door dragging others to church. They want their names in the database. They want 1,000 people on Sunday Morning. They want to grow the church and expand the facilities. They want the prestige of a fine building in which to carry on their program. And they want you to finally get it into your thick skull that nobody has a chance of being saved who does not submit to that program.
  Part of that program includes the higher purpose of recruiting candidates for advancement within the organization. If you should continue to relinquish your freedom more and more to this church, the time will come when your zeal and participation will be channeled toward the professional ministry. You may be encouraged to attend the Bible Seminary in Graham, Washington. If you find this a fascinating and compelling proposition, we would like you to be aware of a few things in advance.
  First of all, the New Testament Christian Seminary is not a fully accredited school. Should you decide to attend there, you will not have the option of leaving the organization with your education intact. One of the methods by which effective control is exerted over the ministers of NTCC is the fact that ministerial credentials are non-transferable, as are academic credits. If you enter any other career field, or attend any other Bible College, or if you should simply desire to fulfill your ministry independently or through some other organzation, you will have to start at zero as far as your qualifications are concerned. This fact is never dropped on your head until you have spent the time, money and effort to get yourself and perhaps your family all the way to the Northwest and are seated in a room full of students, teachers, “the leadership”, their wives, and various luminaries, poised to enroll. So I am telling you now.
    Secondly, you will probably be primed for the essential frame of mind that upholds NTCC, in that your esteem of the Seminary will be built up in advance. You will be led to believe that it is exclusive. This is true only in the sense that your pastor must recommend you to the school, and you must be a “faithful” (full participation) tithe-paying member for at least one year. The exclusivity of the school only refers to its purpose as a training center for NTCC alone. Do not think that the school is renown for its quality or its academic excellence. Many pastors in the organization will tell you that the NTCC Seminary takes “only the best”, and that “only the most dedicated can make the grade”. This should be seen for what it is: an attempt to excite your admiration for the person telling you these lies.
  Thirdly, this seminary is not devoted to teaching the Bible, nor is it especially well-suited for this purpose. The purpose of the school is to serve as a kind of “boot camp” for preachers and their wives (or prospective wives), a basic training for the ministry. Before you think, “Well that’s good, because I need to learn the basics”, be aware: you are not there to learn anything other than just what they want you to know. In other words, your Christian life until now, your experiences thus far, count for nothing. Everything you think you know needs to be unlearned. You are to despise any bond, any influence, any loyalty outside this church organization. Your parents, brothers, and sisters are not saved, because if they were they would be in this church living as you live. Your grandmother is not saved because if she was, she would be “just like us”. Your “knowledge” of the Bible is just so much vain conceit. Your understanding of God’s will in your life is empty and
void of meaning until the picture becomes more clear through the agency of the Bible School and its Leader. Your individuality, your personality, your experiences and your opinions will be broken down and reformed. You are not an adult; you are a child, a “raw recruit”, unpolished and unusable. You’ve never done anything for God, and you never will unless you subject yourself to a life of tedium, in which you are subjected to public embarrassment and humiliation at the whim of R.W. Davis. “You are here to become a leader.”
  Fourthly, the Seminary introduces you to the unbiblical doctrines and prohibitions of the organization, and causes you to believe the following line of logic:  
A. I cannot make it to heaven without fulfilling God’s will in my life. 
B. I cannot fulfill God’s will unless I enter the ministry.
C. I cannot be in the ministry unless I make it through this school.
D. I must obey everything I am told whether it is found in the Bible or not.
E. I must obey my leaders, and if I think they are wrong, I have a bad attitude.
F. To fail at this means that hell will be my home. 
  This is very subtly absorbed over time, so that you do not think you are being intimidated as such. Once you have bought into this manipulation-through-fear tactic, you will be asked to sign a student pledge that binds you officially to obedience to all rules and regulations of the school. Do not think for one minute that these regulations are relaxed except at the whim of the Head of the School, R.W. Davis. Do not think that they will be lifted after you graduate—they are the “preparation”, the training ground and the laboratory for a life of blind obedience to the Leadership of NTCC. In the same manner that police officers are trained during marksmanship exercises to react to the good-guy/bad-guy pop-ups, you are being conditioned to respond like a puppy, without critical thinking, to every dictate of the organization. You only think you are an adult. Once you have signed the pledge, once you have bought in fully to the Leadership, once you get some years behind you, you will convince yourself that “Nobody is forcing me to do anything—I do this because I want to.”
  Fifthly, you will be introduced to “The Rules”. The Rules ebb and flow, wax and wane throughout time, and may be enforced with severity at one time and with wider latitude at other times. The essence of The Rules is Information Control. You cannot call one another on the telephone without permission from M.C. Kekel, the President of the Organization. You cannot invite one another to your respective homes without permission from this same source. You are not to speak with one another outside of church activities without permission. You are to honor this in principle as well as in practice whether you are a student, a minister, living in Graham, living in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., standing in line at the Post Office, or walking down the aisle at the grocery store. This is a tactic of socio-psychological manipulation commonly found in cults of this type.  Horizontal (peer) relationships are weakened and limited in order to restrict the flow of information, while you are taught to rely upon vertical (leadership) relationships, so that devotion to and dependency upon the Leadership is constantly reinforced.
  You are not to attend organized sporting events, nor are you to miss a single class, church service, or any other school-related activity for any reason. You may not take time to see your family except in the most extreme emergency circumstances. Many other such regulations could be listed, and all are justified by the excuse that they are put in place to “avoid problems.” Yet they accomplish nothing of the kind, and only result in long lines of people standing and waiting for the attention of M.C. Kekel in order to receive the coveted permission. When at times these rules are relaxed, it is never because they are so clearly unjustified and wrong, but because they have become temporarily problematic and just are not working well; and this relaxation, though fleeting, will be characterized as an act of Grace and Mercy extended beneficently by the hand of R.W. Davis. In this manner, many people within NTCC, having been controlled and intimidated for many years, have succumbed to the belief that “Pastor” is a man of mercy and gentle kindness. Every time someone is “forgiven” for something that is not a sinful act to begin with, every time “mercy” is extended for something never prohibited by Christ, this attitude of gratefulness toward Davis accumulates into a thick layer that shields the mind from all objectivity about the group.
  You are being taught that you are a child in the presence of such men as your leaders. Instead of making you into a purposeful individual with a mind of his or her own, you are being trained to look to your leaders for all guidance and truth. You thought you were an adult when you arrived, but you are becoming more of a child with each passing day.

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