Even though personal details vary, ex-members of the World Mission Society Church of God have many similarities in their stories. I've found 5 main reasons former members have shared with me in their stories. Here they are, in no particular order:
- The teachings of the WMSCOG contradict the teachings of the Bible. For example, they take verses out of context and distort their meaning, and misinterpret other verses whose meaning is clear. Here are a few specific examples.
- The behavior of the people (especially leaders) in the WMSCOG contradicts the teachings of the Bible. For example, even though the church claims do what the Bible says, they find their leaders promoting lying, divorce, gossip, and such.
- The teachings and practices of the WMSCOG contradict themselves. (I call this "internal evidence.") For example, they keep the feasts of God incorrectly according to their own requirements, and they deny some teachings of Ahnsahnghong himself.
- They realize the church's behavior lines up with destructive mind control tactics. For example, they weren't told about Ahnsahnghong or Zang Gil-Jah until after joining, and there was a heavy demand on their time and money, to the exclusion of their other God-given responsibilities. Check out more stories of personal experiences in the WMSCOG.
- Lastly, some were pushed out (or kicked out). For example, they couldn't live up to the expectations of the WMSCOG, either in behavior or giving (tithing). These seem to have had the hardest time, feeling condemned for failing, until they realize one or more of the other, above reasons. Then they feel blessed to have been "rescued" despite themselves.
Here is another list that shows more specific reasons, Top 10 Reasons People Cease to Believe in the WMSCOG, which you can find on the website Examining the WMSCOG. It's well worth your time to explore that website, especially since it has the perspective of an ex-member (who writes many of the articles).
No matter which was the main reason for leaving, members who leave continue to share similarities in what happens next in their stories. They must go through a healing and recovery process. And the longer they've been in the cult, the more difficult the process is.
If you are going through that currently, please know that there is help out there. There are cult counselors who can help you in person. There are also pastors at your local churches who can connect you with the help you need. There are books that can help you in your healing (such as "Releasing the Bonds" by Steven Hassan). And there are places like our facebook group, where you can talk to other former members and help each other. You don't have to do it alone.