Saturday, 21 November 2015

Herman's Pyramid Hooey

What's the connection between Republican presidential hopeful Ben Carson and late evangelist Herman Hoeh of the Worldwide Church of God?

Pyramid speculation anyone?

From an article by David Krueger on Religion Dispatches.

The writings of one Joseph-built-the-pyramids enthusiast reveals some clues about what might be at stake in Carson’s firm embrace of his beliefs.

In 1964, the evangelist Dr. Herman Hoeh wrote an article titled “Who Built the Great Pyramid” in a Worldwide Church of God magazine called The Plain Truth. Hoeh begins his article emphasizing the impressive size of the pyramid and the mathematical precision with which it was constructed. He notes that the Great Pyramid is one of the seven wonders of the ancient world and that a pyramid, minus a capstone, is imprinted on U.S. currency. Additionally, he claims that the citizens of the U.S. are the descendants of Joseph’s son Manasseh. Very quickly, we get a glimpse of Hoeh’s interests in writing about the pyramid:

"We found the external appearance of the Great Pyramid ruined by the Arabs. For centuries they have carted away and used the polished white casing stones which once made the Pyramid gleam in the sun and moonlight."

He also cites another example of Arab mismanagement of the pyramid stating that after the “Moslem Arabs” invaded Egypt, they further vandalized the “architectural wonder” when they “blindly cut into the pyramid hoping to find buried treasure in it.”

Hoeh goes on challenge the scholarly consensus about the identity of the known builder of the pyramid, the Egyptian pharaoh Khufu (or as he’s known in the Greek, Cheops). First, Hoeh exploits some of the uncertainty about Khufu’s family line by asserting that he was not Egyptian, but instead came from a foreign sheep-herding people who were of a “different race.”

Hoeh then asserts that Cheops was not an “idolater” like other Egyptian pharaohs. To the contrary, he says, Cheops worshipped God under the name “Amen,” which he notes is later used to refer to Jesus Christ in the Book of Revelation 3:14. Furthermore, although scholars have dated the rule of Cheops to the 26th century B.C.E., Hoeh claims that he built the Great Pyramid almost one thousand years later during the time of the seven-year famine, spoken of in the Book of Genesis, when Joseph took up residency in Egypt and assisted the pharaoh in leading during a time of crisis. And what is the true identity of Cheops? In Hoeh’s mind, it is none other than Job, another character from the Hebrew Bible.

Hoeh’s historical claims are clearly flawed and easily debunked, but he succeeds in crafting a narrative that inserts revered figures of the Biblical tradition into the starring roles of Egypt’s history. Hoeh’s assertion that Egypt’s most revered structure was built by the Israelites Job and Joseph is followed by a territorial claim. The Great Pyramid, says Hoeh, was constructed by the Biblical Job with the help of Joseph “to commemorate what Joseph did for Egypt and to mark the border of the territory given to Joseph’s family in the land of Egypt by Pharaoh.” The land granted to the patriarchs of Israel “extends westward from Palestine to the Nile River” and includes the Suez Canal even though “Egypt has [wrongly] seized control of it.”

Hoeh concludes with his hope that one day the Great Pyramid will be recognized by modern Egyptians as a monument to the true God, Amen, a.k.a. Jesus Christ, the capstone depicted on U.S. currency. Given his earlier association of Joseph as a forefather of Americans, it’s not hard to imagine that Hoeh hopes for a Middle East more greatly influenced by Christianity and U.S. foreign policy. (End of excerpt. The 1964 Hoeh article is still available online.)

Few 21st century adherents of Armstrongism are aware that Herbert Armstrong once toyed with "pyramidology" - the idea that the Great Pyramid was "prophecy written in stone" complete with measurements in "pyramid inches" - after reading British Israel texts such as Great Pyramid Proof of God (George Riffert, Destiny Publishers, 1932). After actually visiting the pyramids himself on a tithe-funded junket in the 1960s Armstrong emerged disillusioned and dropped the pyramid nonsense - as presumably did Hoeh and his tour-buddy Meredith.

Which may well prove that Herb was a smarter cookie than the Seventh-day Adventist brain surgeon.


  1. Herman Hoeh was a corporate shill who created fantasies by spec to support the incredible silliness of Herbert Armstrong. He managed to create plausible but wrong scenarios out of thin air vapor.

    And then we have delusional Ben Carson who is appearing progressively nuttier as those examining his campaign statements keep unearthing... uh... anomalies. It is an exercise in viewing how someone can be high functioning in a difficult profession while being just plain crazy in other areas of life.

    The worst of it is that people want to believe the nonsense and refuse to give it up once it gets stuck in their brain.

    1. Creating fantasies by spec? Creating plausible but wrong scenarios out of thin air vapor? What's wrong with that? Isn't that what believers do?

    2. What's wrong with that?

      Nothing, if your goal is to live your life in insanity.

  2. At the 1984 FOT in Nanjing China, Hoeh retracted this article. He went on to say that the Pyramid had survived the Flood. I forget whether I heard him say it from the pulpit or over the dining table. At the same FOT, many members brought their copies of Hoeh's article about the Taiping Rebellion. There was a Taiping Rebellion museum in town, and an extra tour was organized to visit it. Hoeh retracted what he wrote in that article as well. And he also said, I forget whether there or somewhere else, that his whole Compendium can be ignored. He created quite a legacy for himself that embarrassed him later.

  3. The Great Pyramid was not built by Job. It was actually built by Jeb!, a 21st century BC pharoah-wannabe who tried to become leader of Egypt based on the leadership of his brother Dubya-Double-Dum and his father GHWB (no one knows the vowels that were used in that name). Jeb! never did achieve his goal of being pharoah, but he did rule a portion of southern Egypt for a time and based on that position he constructed the Great Pyramid, which turned out to be a tomb for his national political aspirations.

  4. Since this info came out about him being a Fundamentalist, he has crashed in the polls. A good thing; anti-science Christians & Muslims are not right for leadership in these modern times and the voters know it!