Los Angeles City College and their Life Club, Part 1


Los Angeles City College and their Life Club, Part 1

L.A.C.C’s LIFE Club is bible study group sponsored by the City of Angels International Christian Church.   I met Nina –one of the church’s “planters” from Hawai’i –in one of the campus restrooms.  She asked me if she had ever seen me at the bible studies, but I had never been, neither had I heard of any campus bible study at L.A.C.C.  Nina told me the meetings were held in the campus’ Chemistry building every Tuesday at 1 p.m., she also offered me her number in case I had any questions before going.  I was reluctant, but because she approached with such kindness and transparency, I agreed to go and at 1pm, I showed up to Chem. 106.

In my first meeting, the “Pastor” asked everyone to answer the question, “How do you feel loved?” Everyone gave his or her various answer; “God answering my prayers”, “God loving me for who I am”, or “Knowing God loves me because of what is in His Word”, etc.  I answered, “Being accepted for who I am”. I noticed that the “Pastor” gave me an extended glance, which I am sure he did with everyone else who answered because he wanted to ponder the answer.  After all the answers were given, the “Pastor” went on to elaborate on love and how we are supposed to love God as he commands us to, through scriptures:

John 14:15 “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.” John 15:10 “If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love.”-Jesus, the Christ

 

He went on to explain the components of keeping the commandments of God and abiding in God’s love as doing what Jesus said according to scripture. I liked the study. I did not get anything mind blowing from what the “Pastor” said, but it was cool.

I did not return to the bible  study for a couple weeks because I was on time constraints with class, study, and other obligations.  Two weeks afterward, I was inviting to a bible study held away from campus at a house in Pasadena, CA, near the Huntington Library. I was a bit reluctant then too because I really did not know the person inviting me, but I was sure I would recognize her once I saw her.  I never saw the girl that invited me to the on-campus bible study again.

On Friday night, December 2nd, I took the bus over to Pasadena and was picked up at a Starbucks near the house where the Bible study was being held.  I was anxious since, again I did not know anybody.  The girl who picked me up was unrecognizable to me at first, but then I remembered she was in the first bible study I went to on campus.  I had no clue whom she was, but she told me that she and her friend, Nina (the girl who invited me to the bible study then disappeared) ,  had known each other for a very long time, and the girl (M.I.A) was part of a ministry group based in Hawai’i. I absolutely thought she was a student; in fact, that was the impression she made when we spoke. We arrived at the house. We walked in and right away, I was introduced to many people, and to be honest, none of them was particularly cordial, except about two people (it was a bible study of about twenty-five people). They started off the study with some Christian Hymns, Hymns I had never heard before, so I clapped or snapped my fingers like they did, but barely sang unless I caught on to the repetitiveness, which there was a lot of. There were about 5 songs sang then we all sat down and a “Pastor” or “Assistant Pastor” got up to minister.  He began to talk about knowing God, and recognizing our sins, and he quoted some verses since he was in the flow of things. Then he said, “If you’re quiet or shy and awkward, you have secret sins.” I am almost certain he meant me and another new person who was sitting about ten-feet away from me, who was also a new comer.  When he made that statement the girl who drove me to the house who also sat next to me, looked directly at me.  I felt an immediate sense of guilt for not going up to everyone and telling them my life story and acting as if I have known them all for five years. Luckily, I know myself pretty well, so I did my best to disregard their physical and verbal judgments. After a couple more of the Assistant Pastors bold statements that I cannot remember, the Assistant Pastor sat down, and the Pastor got up to teach and preach (the same guy from the on-campus study). He talked on the subject of what a true Christian was and what his or her actions entailed.  He also made a mention that anyone not singing the songs had secret sins, which was another judgment statement I brushed away.  I did not know the songs. He went on to teach and preach about what it meant to be a “true” Christian. Basically, he said to be saved you have to be baptized [water] and you must make disciple of men [go up to people and tell them about Jesus], and if you do those things you are a Christian.  He even said that after he was baptized he got whatever he wanted from God, “Let me tell you, after you get baptized, you get whatever you want from God.  I am proof.” I had never heard those two requirements being the condition for salvation. After the deliverance of that sermon, people were given time to speak about what they got out of the sermon. I noticed that no one asked questions. Those that spoke, spoke about how convicted they felt at their laziness and how their discipleship numbers were low, and that they wanted to please God. A few minutes of speaking, and there was time of fellowship before moving into the family room for a movie.

A couple of the girls that were attendees of the bible study introduced themselves; Charlene, and Rachel, both of them cool and we talked a while about reading God’s word and just making an effort to do His will. By that time, people began to leave or move into the family room to watch the movie.  Charlene and I spoke for a while about different things like school and different versions of the bible and the movie we were watching (Jet Li’s Fearless), then Charlene had to leave along with her party  because they caught the bus from South Los Angeles. I said my goodbye’s to her and her friend Sharnay who gave me a card to buy some organic coffee from a company she was working with. While they were on their way out, their friend, Mary, approached me and asked, “So, are you going to join our bible study?” I replied, “I don’t know, I am thinking about it.”  “Everyone seems pretty chill here.” She then asked, “So, are you going to join our church to become a true Christian?” I just looked at her I really did not know what she meant by that.  I have been quite confident in what I believed, and for some time.  I opened my mouth to ask exactly what she meant, but she interjected and said, “Jesus wants us to obey his commandments.” Then she opened her bible and showed me a verse that she’d already underlined part of, “…Keep His commandments.”  She then went on to say that, their church is not like other churches and they preach to obedience of God’s commandments ( It’s not like I have not heard that before). She then told me to think about it, and then she tilted her head to the right and said “Okay?” I was not offended, yet.  I was offended later after giving the situation thought because she sat across the room from me on two different occasions for a total of 3 hours, and hardly asked me my name before she practically told me I was not real about God according to her standards.  She anticipated her judgment of me thinking that she was doing the will of the God.  People, and their crazy miss-the-mark judgments.  I went home that night, and had such a hard time falling asleep.  All I could think of was the “reality” of my utter impiety since I was not following the commands of this new church I sought fellowship alongside.  Do these people ever stop to think to themselves that some people are generally uncomfortable with the church –but believe God— so they don’t attend; moreover, placing judgments on someone who is new does not progress the guest [me]  into joining the club. My ideas of church have always been that of a place of refuge.  Bible studies, in particular, have been an open invite to discussions regarding scripture, and life, not a place to express your shame and guilt regarding hard work, or lack thereof.  It is quite probable that my expressed frustrations with my experience is formulated through my biased, narrow view of “church” and bible studies, but allow me to challenge the reader by asking the following questions: 1.  Aren’t we able to question for ourselves regarding scripture [God provides wisdom]?  2.  Does not God provide for us a Comforter that is responsible for convicting us? 3.  Is it necessary for the unity of the Saints to follow each other’s convictions in correlation with our own, even if those convictions seem legalistic or illegally condemning?

The Christian is called to live by faith in God, not our feelings;however, there was something about this “church”  I was feeling especially apprehensive about and I wanted to discover why.

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38 thoughts on “Los Angeles City College and their Life Club, Part 1

  1. WOW. This group kind of reminds me of the Jehova’s witnesses. When they have come to my house for a first time, they assume that I know nothing of the scriptures and they assume that I am a sinner in the worst way. This is judgemental on their part. I understand that I am a sinner ( Romans 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;) and that the Holy Spirit convicts me. I don’t need anyone making me feel guilty and uncomfortable. In doing so, I turn in the opposite direction and stop listening or leave. Or, I turn the tables and preach to them by showing them bible verses.
    On the other hand, if a church or group only preaches happiness and a good feeling all the time, chances are, we will not feel guilty of our sin(s) and we may not ask forgiveness.

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  2. I am sure people mean well in their endeavors, but it is always important to investigate just who you pledge to. If any church has a “Leader” chances are there is some negativity within the group doctrine and ethics wise.

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    1. Hi Kimberly, I enjoyed reading your article, and thanks for posting an encouraging comment on our wordpress site as well!

      Each one of us who seeks the “narrow way” of Jesus will almost certainly think that WE (our personal faith perspective/theology/church) have it “right” without often realizing ALMOST all others will view themselves in exactly the same way!

      So how do we determine what view is right? Is there a way to come to terms that we can all agree on?

      I think so, and Jesus (His life and all of His teachings) is that standard or foundation. Sounds simple, but then people can squabble forever over a “correct” understanding of what Jesus taught. But if we were to approach his teachings as an UN-sophisticated (read: “wise and learned” Mt. 11:25) child who didn’t have a pastor or bible commentary nearby, we might just reconsider everything in a new light. And I think that’s the hallmark of a truth-seeker, i.e. someone who remains open to and accepts the truth even if it proved them completely wrong about previous notions they held.

      Much love and peace to all seekers!

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  3. I’m a former member of the International Christian Church’s predecessor organization: the International Churches of Christ. (The ICC is a splinter group of the ICOC.) Both groups teach a Jesus that was not fully divine in nature during His time on earth. (He obtained sinless perfection through his own human willpower.) They both teach that the Holy Spirit is not a Person. (At worst, He is just a mark of one’s salvation. At best, He is only a powerful, impersonal force. This also makes them non-Trinitarian.) And they both teach that it’s possible to stop sinning and you ultimately can choose to stop sinning. (This is the ancient heresy of Pelagianism that denies anything close to an inherited sinful nature from Adam.) Greg nailed it: this group isn’t legitimately Christian. It’s both a theological and sociological cult.

    I’m sorry that you encountered this group. But, I’m also very, very happy that you didn’t join and it sounds like you didn’t even start their Bible study series for conversion into their group (called “First Principles”). I was a member for eight years and have fully recovered. (I didn’t become an authentic Christian until six months after leaving and came to the conclusion that I had accepted the wrong Jesus!) Unfortunately there are hundreds of thousands of people around the world who are still stuck and hurting from the damage this group has caused.

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    1. Thank you so much for your response. I believe that many are actually guilted into remaining on the ICOC/ICC because of the type of validities they use to convince you you’re a “true Christian”. The Bible is quite clear on how to know when you are saved, but they’ve adopted some other ideas which aren’t biblical. Anyway, thank God that you’ve been liberated from that wickedness and you know God truly and authentically!

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      1. I disagree with this don’t just suck in this guys argument. Think for yourself ultimately, I have a problem with your post because 1 there is just too many unknowns and too many unprovens and just not enough hard-line evidence, it just sounds like you walked in they explained to you something you got butt hurt and then left and decided to bust the group because they didn’t happen to fit your definition of christianity… Geez. If you want to hash this out more we can talk.

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      2. Don’t mind Jay. Apparently he’s a member of the International Christian Churches and he’s attempting to stir up trouble by using old, played arguments that attack people critical of his organization. (Actually, I had to read his argument a few times to figure out what he was talking about! But that’s typical in my experience.)

        Reading anything negative about his group or leaders won’t do him any good in his current state of mind. It would only be effective if he was open to leaving.

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      3. nah I’ll leave you to google kip, and apparently the xray guy has no idea what he is talking about…anyways moving on sorry to disturb…it is not for me to talk about or mediate.

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  4. I found this page because I have a friend who just joined the church and it sounded familiar to me because I had dealings with them before. To make sure it was the same group, I looked up the church name and your blog came up. They are very pushy, clueless judgmental and yes, they are a cult. I went shopping with my mom when two ladies approached us. They asked if we knew Jesus and some other questions I don’t remember but I said yes I do, I have a church home, I’m currently in Bible college and my mother is one of the professors there. They didn’t care, they still persisted and I’m thinking to myself, aren’t you supposed to be going to the lost? I had no idea they thought we were lost. LOL so funny, when I think back at it, they had no idea who they were dealing with (with me). I remember When I asked what church they belong to and they got defensive. They refused to answer me until I kept pressing it. To get them to leave me along I agreed to go to one of their Bible studies. It took me awhile to go so the lady gave me a beautiful plant. I thought that was very odd. She pretty much said I did that for you so now you must stop making excuses and go to the Bible study. I finally went and when I got through with them,(because it had been awhile and I don’t remember the problem I had with them) some of the people there asked where do I hold my Bible study because they wanted to join in with me. I was shocked so I pulled the ones who wanted to leave aside and shared with them what was wrong with their teachings and I quickly left because the teachers were realizing that I exposed them. Because it happened about 15 years ago, I wanted to make sure that the church that my friend just joined and got baptist is the same church that I had the bad experienced with. They also had a big breakfast convention and I invited my mother with me so she can see for herself because they were pressuring her also. We were both convinced that this was a cult. And it’s true that they are a lot like Jehovah Witnesses. If anyone maybe confused of any church,…if a church preach that you must earn your way to heaven,by following the commandments then run!!! It’s a cult. We are not saved by works, we are saved by the work of the cross! We are save by grace, through faith. Working doesn’t make anyone righteous. God called Noah, Job and Abraham righteous before there was the law because they believed in Him completely and acted on their belief in his word. Faith in the LORD’s word. Jesus makes us righteous. Works makes us faithful and obedient. Salvation is offered to everyone who believes on Him. Another thing (I am through) that I notice is…they only teach from the New Testament as if the Old Testament no longer exist. The New is the fulfillment of the Old. The Old didn’t go away, the old was fulfilled. This is their biggest problem. All is God’s word.*** All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness. 2 Tim 3:16. Okay, now I’m done. : )

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    1. I believe my experience to be pretty similar to yours. I met with the members of the ICC ( i believe that is the name) on about 4 different occasions. The first meeting was at the school’s Life Club, the second time was at a house in Pasadena where bible study was held. It wasn’t a very uplifting and encouraging bible study since most if what was talked about in circle was how different people felt conviction over what was being taught. I went back to the Life Club a second time ( I don’t know why I kept participating), and I asked a question and was greeted with frustration. I later found out that questions are discouraged within that group, for whatever reason! The very last meeting was with one of the leaders of the group, where she suggested (after speaking with her for nearly 2 hours on doctrine), that I wasn’t saved and that I needed to continue attending the group meetings. I am assuming because I need to “get right”. I was very offended and taken aback by the claim because I was very keenly aware at the time about where I stood doctrinally. I wasn’t incredibly comfortable in what I believed, but I knew and understood the process (which was according to them, wrong). I left the restaurant where the meeting was very confused and upset, and it a while for me to get past the offense. I began to ignore the woman’s text messages and invites because her thoughts toward me, which were through the lens of their/her doctrine completely inaccurate. I haven’t seen any of those people from the Life group, but from various articles that I search they use different tactics to solicit students in to joining; even pretending to be students themselves when they are in truth recruiters. They are pretty nuts.

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  5. Church of Christ is a CULT ! This is what they believe which is FALSE DOCTRINE !
    Believes that Jesus created the earth, NOT GOD !
    They believe that Jesus was God who turned into flesh and came down to the earth, ( he didn’t cease being God at that time.)
    They do NOT use instruments in worship, because they think that they do not have authority from God to do so?
    They believe that you must be baptized to go to heaven
    They believe that the old testament is obsolete
    They b elieve that we will live with Christ in heaven forever, that Christ’s future millennium on David’s throne in Jerusalem is an illusion
    They believe that the Triune Godhead, not 3 distinct separate persons of the Diety

    Church of God has also similar view but it varies to some degree but still FALSE as NONE of this is TRUE in the bible, they PRAY on unsaved or BABYCHRISTIANS that do NOT know the word and my new friend just joined and started telling me about it and something didn’t set right and I FELT that in my heart it SOUNDED like a CULT ! so I came and checked out my list of cults and there it was and pulled up the name of Kip McKean and it said that he was from this church, they have been MANY DIFFERENT NAMES and KEEP CHANGING it so they are NOT CAUGHT as the church of CHRIST ! so be careful, guys they are a CULT as you can tell by their beliefs shalom and Yeshua bless you !

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    1. Your generalizations about the Churches of Christ and Churches of God (Which ones? Cleveland, TN? Anderson, IN?) are false. Additionally, your statement about the Trinity is confusing.

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  6. Thanks for the sharing your personal experience. My friend has invited me to their bible study (LIFE) and I thought everything was fine. It was then until I get so many text trying to invite me (which is good), hang out sometime during the week (I don’t know you people!) and then me being asked with a distinct judgmental tone, “Why don’t you go to church?” (I do, just not in the mornings), I felt the need to look up their church and I stumbled upon this post. Carm.org is just amazing at looking and investigating doctrines of sects, cults, etc.

    http://carm.org/synopsis-international-church-christ

    Thanks again guys and God bless! 🙂

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    1. So sorry for the late reply. I’m attending school full time which equals really busy. Okay, yes carm.org is pretty cool. Thanks so much for sharing your experience. They’re a pretty aggressive group of people and I’m probably thinking they believe that only THEIR church is right and correct ya know?

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  7. Hey Kim,

    I appreciate this discussion, You probably already know that every human being that wants to be a christian or claims to be a christian must follow Jesus Christ.
    This is according to Luke 14-

    “26 If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.

    27 And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple.” (KJV)

    Now, Jesus said this when he was still physically alive, but now he’s dead, so how can I still follow him?

    Before we get to that answer let me ask if the bible study you went to where you watched a movie was on a Friday?

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    1. “Now, Jesus said this when he was still physically alive, but now he’s dead, so how can I still follow him?”

      You’re mistaken; He is alive. Jesus physically resurrected from the dead on the third day, just as He said. This is the key fact that Christianity either rests or falls upon. If the resurrection of Christ is false, then all Christians are liars, deluded, and have no hope (1 Corinthians 15:12-34).

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  8. i think we should just not generalise… I grew up in Eastern Religion, visited science of the mind churches, was a serious follower in an Anglican church for many years, teach on traditional african spirituality, have benfitted much from Joyce Meyer and other tele evangelists and read and admire the material of the Catholic church. I have really enjoyed all these experiences. The prodigy of each church community is amazing. At present I am a member of the ICOC and have enjoyed it a lot. I see persons living out their faith honestly not perfectly. I have experienced numerous examples of single men and women, as well as married couples living joyfully, in trial and good times. I have experienced deep changes in my ability to love and receive love. I have seen people show compassion, refuse to gossip, sacrifice greatly, apologise humbly, bear lengthly, share openly, give sacrificially, advise wisely and laugh deeply. The church is a far far way from perfect, but its the closest i’ve seen in my journeys so far. Who knows what deep darkness i’ll discover. But to tell the truth i won’t be surprised… Humans are bound to fail and the best churches on earth are mere shadows of heaven. Just wanting each person to take heaven and hell seriously. Zealousness that may morph into aggresion and sales tactics is wrong yet a natural imbalance that will always have to be righted by the gentle holy spirit. However, i’ve had enough of the passive, sweet, lukewarm chritsianity that offends noone and leaves so many lost. Honestly thats so much easier to do. I know becuase I did it for years. However, for me its just a really inappropriate response to the reality of hell and the amazing sacrifice of Jesus. I know i’ll always have to depend on the Holy Spirit to keep me from swinging into a judgemental, self righteous, and aggressive imbalance. Yet at the same time it takes courage to do your best, persuade, and despite many errors and obstacles keep sharing the gospel. Jesus was killed for his efforts and so were many of his sincere followers throughout the ages…what do we expect to happen to us?

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    1. Wow… with the mix of truth and falsehood you’ve been exposed to – and apparently not discerning between the two – it’s no wonder you’re “totally committed” to the ICOC and its man-centered gospel and drinking deep from their poisoned well. Just be sure not to blame the Holy Spirit when you encounter that darkness! (Remember that in ICOC/ICC/McKeanist theology that God the Holy Spirit has no role in one’s salvation and no role in keeping one saved. Your discipling system – executed and controlled by men – takes care of both, leaving the third Person of the Trinity in the proverbial unemployment line.)

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  9. I too had a run with the ICC, was pretty close to getting baptized with them too. But something always felt a little fishy. The first red flag I noticed was their unwillingness to be questioned, when you challenge them they will usually tell you your points are irrelevant or start making random accusations/judgments toward you – that you’re sinful, prideful, selfish, that Satan is blinding you, that you’re asking these questions and making these challenges because you’re “not right with God” and so on. But the things discussed so far here aren’t even the most disturbing issues. If you have a boyfriend/girlfriend that is not a member of the ICC – they will tell you to dump that relationship ASAP, and they will put tremendous pressure on you to do so, to give it up for God, supposedly. Yeah, even if you’re BF/GF is a Christian it doesn’t matter because they only consider members of their church to be true Christians, everyone else is going to hell – I once asked them “How do you know NO OTHER CHURCH IN THE WORLD has true Christians?” And they said that it could be theoretically possible; but that they’ve encountered thousands all over the globe and none of them so far has real Christians except them. LOL.

    But on to more creepiness. When you become a member or “Disciple” of that church, you are only allowed to date other church members. And when you want someone to be your GF/BF you have to go through you and your significant other’s “disciplers” (basically people who keep tabs on you 24/7, to hold you “accountable” for any sin you might do. So say I wanted to date Kim, I have to ask my Discipler for permission, then Kim has to ask her Discipler, then they get together and decide if we are a good match for each other, and the criteria on being a good match is based on how devout you are according to their twisted standards. It is so ridiculous to me that actual adults would subject themselves to something like this… not even parents of teenage kids are that controlling. And finally, when your relationship is approved and you go “steady” – you are not allowed to even kiss, and you can only go out on dates once every 2 weeks, the most intense thing they can do is hold hands. They also limit the amount of time you spend with each other on those dates, I remember this guy in a Bible study confessed his sin for the week and his sin was that he spent too much time talking with his girlfriend (2 hours) and that he needs to remember to love God above her and to not “idolize” her. I had to hold my tongue, the relationship these dating couples have can’t even be called romantic relationships… I found it both ridiculous and sad that young bright college kids could be brainwashed into a cult like the ICC. I think what broke my heart the most was when I had a talk with another guy, he was probably 19 or 20, and he was convinced that his mother was in hell because she wasn’t baptized as a true Christian in the ICC, that’s what the ICC leadership taught him. And when I say convinced I mean convinced, he really believed it and you could see the sadness in his face, it wasn’t a question to him or a mere possibility – he *knew* his mother was in hell. I find it so sickening and cruel that ICC leadership can teach that kind of garbage. So disgusting.

    And these are all just things I know from being a “visitor/guest” at their church and campus ministry, once you become a member (or Disciple) I have heard things get even more creepy and cult-like. And I don’t even want to know any more details about their practices just because it really makes me sad what that church makes people go through. But yeah, I bet if most of you guys went through witnessing all the garbage they do, you wouldn’t even feel anger or disgust toward them, you would just feel incredible sorrow for the people stuck in that cult, it truly is very sad.

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    1. I did not know the extent of their legalism, but that’s awful. And you’re right, Rodriguez, that is not a romantic relationship at all it’s more like an arranged agreement. Romanticism is natural and people should be allowed to express themselves in that way toward a person that they love. I’m glad you got out of there, too! What I could not wrap my head around while in “fellowship” with them is why they got so irritated with questions. I experienced that on a couple of occasions and let me tell you the feeling it formulated was in parts embarrassing and a bit confusing as though they’re words and expressions of beliefs are ultimately primary to all over believes (subservient). It’s really sad and lack a true purpose in bringing people who are Christians together as one unity. They actively disassociate themselves with those who are not like them…

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  10. Here is one person’s experience with the main church that sent out that group, the City of Angels International Christian Church, and interactions with the group’s leader, Kip McKean. I hope you have already run, run away from the group, as it’s top leaders are only trying to recruit more people and squeeze money out of the existing members to pay for their wealthy lifestyle:
    http://ministeriolatino.blogspot.com/2012/11/why-im-no-longer-part-of-city-of-angels.html
    http://ministeriolatino.blogspot.com/2014/03/kip-mckeans-650000-condo.html

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      1. Thank you. And thank you for sharing the link to that person’s story. It’s a shame how deceptive people are, and dishonest; especially, when they claim to be followers of Jesus. Congratulations to you as a former member!

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  11. So important not to generalise. I haven’t experienced much of what has been described. Especially the reaction to questions. I have always been an extremely outspoken person and i ask and continue to ask questions. I have never received any of the types of responses described. Keep in mind though religious faiths and institutions are dynamic, they change just like the people who maintain them. Sometimes for the worse, sometimes for the better. I’ve experienced a lot of humility and willingness to explore and consider other viewpoints. It’s unfortunate what you have experienced, but again not surprising. Religious institutions will never be perfect, and often people look back and cringe at the things they did and said years before on their spiritual path. I really believe God values a sincere desire and effort to seek Him and serve Him, no matter what faith you are from. Just think of Paul, so zealous for the law he organised the killings of many Christians. Talk about cringe! Then look at what He became. Let us ever be clear and honest for indeed ‘iron does sharpen iron’, but also gentle and hopeful not so sure we know it all.

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    1. Nomali, are you a member of the International Christian Churches or International Churches of Christ? If so, what is the role of the Holy Spirit in your discipling relationships?

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  12. I, too, nearly fell into the CofA church. If you want to see their true colors, ask questions, challenge them, show that you have your own mind and that you’re not a puppet. They will make you feel like YOU have a problem, and guilt you with God’s Word. RUN! Cut them all off completely. It’s the only way you can rid yourself of them.

    I have a friend that still attends and I can’t tell him what head games I endured from a couple of leaders that he respects because he will refuse to believe it. And the most disturbing part was that whatever you shared, EVERYONE knew it. I became so paranoid because I didn’t know who to talk to. They also share their “sin lists” so don’t even disclose your most personal secrets!

    If you are in this cult, and have made friends, don’t try to hang on to them. You will lose them anyway but you will have your sanity and peace of mind. Find a good Bible believing church and rebuild your life.

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    1. I’m sorry about your friend. He may have to experience deeper situations in order to realize that the church has a toxic atmosphere. I think with a church it is just good to find a group of people who won’t judge you and you can learn and grow sincerely. That’s probably asking more that what’s offered sometimes, but I think that landing a church that’s good to you is very likely. Finding such a church just takes a little foot work.

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  13. Hi Kim,

    Just came across your post. Thank you for being so honest and detailed about your experience. I just went yesterday to an ICC that’s newly established in Los Angeles due to being invited by girls in a bible study that I’m trying to start… and I wanted to storm out so early in the service. I’ve been involved in a Church of Christ before and this one was no different and yet was subtle too in its heresies.

    Pray for these ladies if you can: Tina & Nicole. Our small group is very new and yet God brought them there. They’re so caught up in their church and every day is like a new event they’re inviting us to. They LOVE this church and moved to LA because of it. After going on Sunday my heart is broken and I just want to tell them all these truths that are confirmed by your blog, others’ stories, and my own spirit being so angry that these churches exist.

    Seriously though praise the Lord Almighty for giving us discernment…. And for rescuing people out of these traps and bringing them into his light. I hope you’ve found a Bible-believing & orderly church where you can grow in truth and community. I miss my church back home dearly and am still looking for one here in this new city.

    Blessings to you girl,

    Christy

    Like

    1. PS – I didn’t even think of this until now, but if you’re still looking for a bible study (and you’re in LA) come to ours!! You would be an excellent witness to these girls involved in ICC and a great addition to our small group 🙂

      I have a Meetup Page here: http://www.meetup.com/biblebabes/

      I know you posted this years ago, but still thought I’d reach out!

      Liked by 1 person

    2. I think that type of church is hard to get out of. There is constant indoctrination of their beliefs, through events; they’re on the move, and may not have time to really think about what theyre getting involved in.

      Like

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