The Works of the Flesh and the Ministry


The Politics of Rebellion


From Agitated, Murky Waters to Fresh, Still Waters


12 Reasons Why I will not Leave United


What they  Forgot Along the Way



Sabbath and Holy Day Observance Statement by the Council of Elders

Matters of  Difference  Between Ministers

John Elliot Open Letter to Dennis Luker


Open Letter to Pastors Resigning from UCG (by a UCG Member)


Cleveland Sermon: 12 Corrupt Men

The Texas Move Fiasco










(Originally titled, "Noble Motives or Hidden Agenda")

(Written for the UCG Elders' Forum, December 15, 2010,  just before the split took place)



Dear Brothers in Christ,


Please forgive me if I take more of your time, but I feel compelled to share some more thoughts with you.


One of the benefits that I have received from my secular education has been to be able to study human nature from both a historical and a psychological perspective.  This -- and most of all -- a fair knowledge of what our Holy Book says about human motives, have helped me to often make sense of what transpires within human organizations and what “might be” happening right now within our church walls.


There are some predictable trends that in time seem to develop, in part or in full, within all organizations or groups of people, small or large, secular or religious. Most of you probably know them well; some may not. They are, more or less, as follows:


1.     Given enough time, the group participants will take positions on the right or on the left of the Conservative vs. Liberal continuum. Some do so consciously, some unconsciously.


2.     Most people will gravitate toward the middle; “a few” will gravitate toward the extreme right or the extreme left.


3.     The ones in the middle, whether they move toward one side of the continuum or the other, are simply “moderates” who are not interested in revolutions. They are willing to allow the established system to take care of their concerns. They are patient and prefer to do things “decently and orderly.”


4.     The ones on the extreme right or the extreme left are the revolutionaries. They are “impatient,” “rigid” and “inflexible” in their "demands"; they are “intense” in their approach and want to “overturn” the system and shape it “in their own image.” They also tend to be “very convincing” with their arguments that things need to change “for the benefit of the group.”


5.     Sometimes they feel that they are "inspired" by a higher power to bring about “necessary” changes, or to bring the (religious) group back to a state of purity, so as “to please God.”


6.     Unfortunately, the power of persuasion of such extremists has the capacity to even pull moderates into their camp, who also end up believing in the “righteousness” of the extremists’ cause.


7.     The outward motivations of such extremists almost always “appears” noble and altruistic; that is, they appear to want the well being of others, the suppression of “unfair” and/or “oppressive” powers or, in religious organizations, the pursuit of “doctrinal purity.”


8.     Oftentimes, the “true” motives are “selfish.” The revolutionary leaders are mostly or totally driven by a desire to implement their own agenda. Most of all, “they can’t wait” to be in control and rule over others. “Sometimes,” the motivation of such people is simply resentment, hatred or just plain envy.


9.     Such extremists have no problem with finally orchestrating revolutions. They do not care about the casualties. All they care about is implementing their own “hidden agenda,” at all costs, or simply getting rid of the leaders they harbor resentment or hatred toward or that they envy.


10. Once the revolution is over and countless casualties are left behind, there is often a power struggle as to who is to rule over the new Kingdom. Oftentimes it leads to a dictatorship which is tyrannical and, by far, more oppressive than the one that was overturned.


Unfortunately, the above realities have been with us since Lucifer’s time. Lucifer was such an extremist. Without doubt his motives “seemed” noble and altruistic. No doubt, he “seemed to care,” and we can bet on the fact that he “seemed” to stand for “fairness and justice.” Because of the “righteous” image he was able to project, he was able to pull into his extremist camp countess “moderate” angels who rebelled with him to bring about a “new,” “better” and “more righteous” Kingdom.


I am not God. I am not able to read people’s motives but I am watching the present tense situation in the ministry with interest and deep concern. While doing so, I cannot but wonder to what extent the motives of “the leaders” of the discontented group are pure and holy, or if they are simply one more manifestation of the “ancient trend” listed above.


Perhaps the motives of some or all of the leaders of the group which is expressing concerns are truly “pure” and “noble.” What will help me to reach a conclusion about them and their motives, in the near future, will be the following:


1.     How "demanding" will they be that what they see as “necessary changes” occur     ASAP?


2.     To what extent will they try to paint a negative picture of the present leadership, imputing “unrighteous” motives?


3.     To what extent will they publish their concerns in “Open Letters” on the Internet, instead of keeping their concerns private, so as not to perturb the membership?


 4.     To what extent will they show the Fruits of the Spirit, which will lead to unity and peace,   as opposed to the Works of the Flesh, which will lead to divisions and turmoil?

5.     How much time will they allow Jesus Christ to intervene and deal with any “possible” deviations from His holy expectations, on the part of the present leadership? In other words, have they stopped believing that Christ can assess the present leadership and, if found wanting, He can inspire hundreds of His ministers, (who have already been tested by fire) to vote them out and bring into the COE a more righteous group, "if" such is the necessity?


6.     To what extent will they push for an “inevitable” split, so as to get into a position of power or, perhaps, “return” to a position of power?


Dear brothers in the ministry, I cannot but wonder if right now we “might be” in an evolving trend that has much in common with Lucifer’s rebellion. I sincerily hope that within the next few weeks or months my fears will be proven unfounded. I also sincerely hope that I will see nobility of heart in all concerned and, most of all, an "Agape" spirit in those who have been given the mission not only to preach such a spirit but to exhibit it and to model it for the benefit of God’s people.


Again, please forgive me if I have offended anyone. I have not reached any conclusion, “yet.” Like you, I am simply watching, praying and longing for peace and unity.


Your brother in Christ,

Michael Caputo

PS. Since this post was written, it appears that my fears have been proven founded.


(This article has been posted on my, Militant Atheism Exposed web site. I have done so, not because I am implying any affinity of the disaffected group to atheism, but because it will provide a faster appearance on the Internet.)

© Copyright,  Michael Caputo, 2010







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