by Steve Wagers

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Complete In Him! (10 of 16)
Where Religion Moves Out and Jesus Moves In!
Steve Wagers
Colossians 2:16-23

1. The facts are well known. The group lived together in a large immaculate house in Rancho Santa Fe, a wealthy community in San Diego. On March 26, 1997, the bodies of 21 women and 18 men, ranging in age from 26-72, were discovered in various stages of decomposition. Several days before, they had ingested applesauce or pudding laced with barbiturates and a shot of vodka, and they had submitted to suffocation from plastic bags placed over their heads.

2. They were identically dressed in unisex black shirts, pants, and Nikes, and had purple shrouds placed across their faces. Many of the men had been castrated. Nevertheless still frustrated with their bodies, they chose to leave their "earthly containers" behind in San Diego to join aliens who would take them to the Next Level with a newly embodied life. The extraterrestrials were believed to reside in a starship traveling behind the Hale-Bopp comet. Their leader was a man named Marshall Applewhite, and the group was known as Heaven's Gate. 1

3. David Koresh was born Vernon Wayne Howell in Houston, Texas in 1959 to a 15-year old single mother. He never knew his father and was raised by his grandparents. When he was 20, Koresh turned to the Church of Seventh Day Adventists, his mother's church. But he was expelled for being a bad influence on the young people. Sometime during the next couple of years, Koresh went to Hollywood to become a rock star but nothing came of it. Instead, in 1981 he went to Waco, Texas where he joined the Branch Davidians, a religious sect which in 1935 had settled 10 miles outside of Waco.

4. By 1990 Koresh had become the leader of the Branch Davidians and legally changed his name, saying on the court document that the change was "for publicity and business purposes." He said the switch arose from his belief that he was now head of the biblical House of David. (Koresh is ...

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