Church of Wells/YMBBA Ministries



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10/02/2013 3:44 pm  #1


Fear, fear, and more fear...

Bear with me, this will be a long post. Some might ask what drives the Church of Wells, what do all the members have in common, and what moves people to join and become immersed into the church? I have a theory around this, I think the main force that drives them is an immense fear of God and the literal belief in hell. Basically: “If you don’t join us and follow our ways, you will be tormented for eternity in hell.” Sounds pretty serious, huh? This isn’t really hard to figure out if you read anything they post on their web site. To be honest I didn’t read everything in full but I did skim and search their postings. I found some interesting details.

Doctrine of Judgment – This, of course, is their famous (infamous?) 52 page doctrine written by Sean Morris. The word “fear” appears 17 times and “hell” appears 29 times.  I didn’t read this in its entirety but it’s not hard to guess that it’s supporting their views on God’s biblical judgment of the unsaved. I.E. You will burn in hell if you don’t follow us.

Testimonials:
These are incredibly fascinating. Most of them start with someone who is religious to begin with but for some reason they start to become increasingly afraid of God and hell. This fear could progress on its own or as a result of preaching and damnation from the “elders” or other members of the church. The person repents, joins CoW, they become saved, and now a huge burden has been lifted. They can live in peace with God and the church.

Here are some quotes about how fear and the concept of hell plays a crucial role in driving people to join the church…

Testimony of Francis Florentino – “Everything began to make me wonder if I could really go to hell, and in the coming days I was getting increasingly terrified that that was where I would spend eternity.”

The Testimony of Miranda Corriz – “I began to weep and knew that if I died I would go to hell.”

The Testimony of Carolyn Wiegand (an 11 year old by the way) – “They preached some fearful things about the wrath of God that was hovering over us.” “We knew there was nothing good in us, and we definitely deserved hell for all of the times we had scorned God and sinned against our consciences when we knew it was very, very wrong, and that the consequence for sin was hell.” “Since I was saved, the Lord has opened my eyes to his burdens. I especially have a burden for my unconverted siblings. I know that they are going to hell as long as they don't repent, and this stirs me up to pray for them.”

The Testimony of Troy Dannenberger – “I was starting to realize that I was going to hell, and I knew that I needed to find God, so I began to seek after God at around 42 years of age.” “At this time I had such a fear come upon me of hell….”

The Testimony of Brett Michalk – “…based upon my open and unrepentant sin (of the last few years) that I was on my way to hell and needed the Gospel.”

Testimony of Autumrose Trudeau – “I began to reckon with the God who made me and I didn't want to, yet I was propelled by a real fear, for the reality of hell was before me.” “In God's mercy, He was showing me many scriptures that I knew condemned me. God's wrath and justice for sinners was starting to be revealed to me. I knew that if the Bible was true, I had to face up to the reality of hell. There are many souls in hell burning - sincere people, who thought they were right with God, are there, and that was where I was going. This made me so fearful, yet my wicked heart contended with God that it just could not be.”

My question about all of this is what if their doctrine of hell and damnation isn’t correct? What if there is no hell? If you do a simple Google search you’ll find tons of information on very religious people who don’t believe in hell. This is one interesting web site that deals with the topic…
http://www.godsplanforall.com/jesusdidnotteachhell

If the Bible is the inerrant word of God, then why do two groups reading the exact same words come to vastly different conclusions? I would love to hear other people’s opinion on this matter.

 

10/02/2013 7:31 pm  #2


Re: Fear, fear, and more fear...

"Highway To Hell"

Livin' easy
Lovin' free
Season ticket on a one way ride
Askin' nothin'
Leave me be
Takin' everythin' in my stride
Don't need reason
Don't need rhyme
Ain't nothin' that I'd rather do
Goin' down
Party time
My friends are gonna be there too
I'm on the highway to hell
On the highway to hell
Highway to hell
I'm on the highway to hell

No stop signs
Speed limit
Nobody's gonna slow me down
Like a wheel
Gonna spin it
Nobody's gonna mess me around
Hey satan
Payin' my dues
Playin' in a rockin' band
Hey mumma
Look at me
I'm on the way to the promised land
I'm on the highway to hell
Highway to hell
I'm on the highway to hell
Highway to hell
Don't stop me

I'm on the highway to hell
On the highway to hell
Highway to hell
I'm on the highway to hell
(highway to hell) I'm on the highway to hell
(highway to hell) highway to hell
(highway to hell) highway to hell
(highway to hell)
And I'm goin' down
All the way
I'm on the highway to hell

I just can't help but thinking about these cult kids walking around singing this AC/DC classic.  Oh, they just seem so damned miserable. 
 

 

10/02/2013 11:04 pm  #3


Re: Fear, fear, and more fear...

wellstx wrote:

I just can't help but thinking about these cult kids walking around singing this AC/DC classic.  Oh, they just seem so damned miserable. 
 

I wonder if they remember what it feels like to not be miserable?
We have our own version for when we head up Hwy 69.  "We're on the highway to Wells..." ;)

 

10/03/2013 6:31 am  #4


Re: Fear, fear, and more fear...

I love it!  "Highway to Wells"  And I'd be willing to bet that misery is now their norm.

 

10/03/2013 7:31 am  #5


Re: Fear, fear, and more fear...

That's funny, I do think they all walk around singing "Highway to Wells."

I also think their misery goes in stages. It starts out because they are deathly afraid of God and hell which drives them to the church and to repent. They become saved (which is another discussion in itself). After they are saved I have to imagine their fear and misery are gone because they no longer have to worry about hell. But, a different type of misery is now present, the burden of knowing other people are going to burn in hell if they don't repent. You can see this cycle in the testimony of Carolyn Wiegand.

The strange thing is, in their own delusional world I think they are incredibly happy after they are "saved." This just shows you the power of the human mind.

     Thread Starter
 

10/03/2013 10:07 am  #6


Re: Fear, fear, and more fear...

MrSnrub wrote:

But, a different type of misery is now present, the burden of knowing other people are going to burn in hell if they don't repent.

What a heavy crazy-making responsibility. YOUR salvation depends on making sure that other human beings know they will burn in Hell.
Even if they do repent. Because according to this stuff, it's capped. There's a limited number of "Elect" and God already picked them.

This kind of doctrine is so science-fictiony to me. And I don't believe that God sent the Angel Moroni to a 17-year-old hillbilly and taught him to stick his face in his hat to look at magic rocks or that he had special powers to read alien inscriptions on gold slabs.

But just like it says in the Bible, human beings are weak and will ruin it if they can. Even if it says clearly that God is for everyone and that everyone can enter the Kingdom of Heaven, some small-minded human being will want to find a way to make it elitist and socially exclusive; on for a privileged few. Yup, it's all about the 'in crowd'.
 

 

10/03/2013 11:35 am  #7


Re: Fear, fear, and more fear...

MrSnrub wrote:

If the Bible is the inerrant word of God, then why do two groups reading the exact same words come to vastly different conclusions? I would love to hear other people’s opinion on this matter.

Because they say so and God gave them the gift of a better, more complete understanding than you.
The fundamentalist/evangelical preaching industry has taught preachers to answer this by side-stepping and asking you a question back. They don't need to have a real answer or be able to rationally explain this. You have to invest your trust in the preacher. It's a test of "Faith."

A question = lack of faith, spiritual weakness on your part
Lack of full buy-in = not saved
Acceptance without question = saved
https://encrypted-tbn2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSIhN17jp79cLskBK2nSTXh_hbIty5ysJi85-xDBN37EJ27x3Mm

They don't have to answer ~




 
 

 

10/03/2013 11:44 am  #8


Re: Fear, fear, and more fear...

Recommended reading for EVERYONE (preachers, too) - 

Under The Banner of Heaven
https://encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcT1YkKuIoigj4h7Ko20oG916N1PAhFqVe8BHiVvozpMU2Q8SA6n


SINCE Sept. 11, 2001, Americans have talked a lot about the dark side of religion, but for the most part it isn't religion in America they've had in mind. Jon Krakauer wants to broaden their perspective. In ''Under the Banner of Heaven,'' he enters the obscure world of Mormon fundamentalism to tell a story of, as he puts it, ''faith-based violence.'' (New York Times)


While you're at it, read "Into Thin Air" as well. http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/happy.png


 

Last edited by Hythlodaeus (10/03/2013 11:49 am)

 

10/05/2013 7:57 pm  #9


Re: Fear, fear, and more fear...

Mr. Snrub, your original post on this thread is very interesting.  I think everyone wonders why in the world people with the same lives, opportunites, etc. as everyone else would ever want to join such oppressive groups.

I agree with you that fear is probably one of the top motivations.  In fact, to me, that's one of the things that raises a red flag for me about a "church"--if fear is the main reason behind most of their decisions, both as a group and as individuals. 

However, I don't know that this fear necessarily *has* to be attributable to a belief in a literal hell.  I believe in a literal hell.  I believe the Scriptures teach a literal hell.  However, I don't live in fear like the CofW members, because the Bible also teaches that a Christian cannot lose his/her salvation.  If we believe that Jesus' blood is strong enough to cover any sin *before* salvation, then it doesn't make sense that anything a Christian would do after salvation could cancel out His sacrifice.  I think this is where the CofW goes wrong, and where their extreme fear comes from.  They believe that they can lose their salvation if they don't walk the line (and they also seem to believe that God is basically sitting in Heaven just waiting for a Christian to mess up so He can cut them off, which I also don't agree with.)  Whew.  Talk about a life of misery

 

10/05/2013 8:17 pm  #10


Re: Fear, fear, and more fear...

Exactly right, grace. They believe that God stands around and in a flash says, "yep, that's one sin I just can't forgive" and ZAP! Salvation is gone.

I, too, believe in hell. Such a relief to know that God LOVES me in spite of myself. And the fact that they spend months seeking salvation. <shaking head> I just don't get it.

And, on that note, who approved Sean's, Jake's and Ryan's salvation?

 

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