Oh, I have one more thing to mention before I turn off my computer. I’m in the tenth season of 7th Heaven, and I just saw the Christmas episode, which is probably the most Christian episode of the whole series. On it, there’s a character named Rose, who’s engaged to Simon Camden. The family doesn’t really care for Rose, for she is rather self-centered, narcissistic, and snooty. But, to be honest, I don’t really hate her that much. In fact, part of me actually admires her. She knows that the Camdens don’t like her, but that doesn’t faze her a great deal. She has confidence in who she is. I mean, I freak out when anyone doesn’t like me, but she manages to handle others’ rejection of her with courtesy and poise. I also like her after learning today that she has a vulnerable side, but that’s another story.
Anyway, Rose doesn’t believe in Santa Claus or Jesus. And Eric Camden, the pastor father of the Camden family, comments about this to Sandy, a pregnant young lady who is thinking of becoming a Christian. Eric says, “You know, there are some who say that we shouldn’t teach kids about Santa Claus, since, once kids find out that Santa Claus isn’t real, they’ll think that Jesus isn’t real either. But I’ve not seen that happen, except, perhaps, for Rose.”
That reminds me of a comment Herbert Armstrong made in his anti-Christmas tract, The Plain Truth about Christmas (a humble title, if I say so myself). He tells about a kid who finds out that Santa Claus is not real. The kid then says, “I’m going to look into this Jesus Christ business too.”
7th Heaven had to get that spiel on Santa and Jesus Christ from Armstrong, either directly or indirectly. What’s interesting is that Armstrongism manages to get propagated on a large scale via the Internet. The movement is in shambles. It has no charismatic leader to unite it. A lot of people have never even heard of Armstrong. And, yet, his message is still getting out. And I think it’s because of the Internet.
As I’ve told you before, I’m part of a Christian dating site, where I participate in a Bible study and theology forum. There are occasions when people there post articles from Armstrong or his supporters, not knowing who Armstrong was or what he believed. One time, a woman posted an Armstrongite article against Easter, and another woman attacked her for it. “This site doesn’t even believe in the trinity,” she said. “You are hurting young Christians by posting an article from that site!” Well, not long thereafter, that same critical woman posted an Armstrongite article herself, one against evolution. And she didn’t know she was being a hypocrite, for she didn’t even realize that the article was Armstrongite.
So the Armstrong movement is collapsing, and yet it’s still managing to get its message out. And, yet, the message is taken as an anonymous voice in the midst of a cacophony of numerous voices in Internet land. People may read Armstrongite ideas and even accept them, but I don’t see them flocking to Armstrongite churches on a massive scale.