Seven members of the Remnant of God Fellowship along with its founder and leader, Gwen Shamblin Lara, died in a plane crash on May 29. Lara’s religious cult was founded on the notion that being overweight was “a sign of greed and gluttony.” In an interview with Larry King, she said she formed her views of diet by looking at pictures of starving Jews during the Holocaust. She told King, “How in the Holocaust did you have all these people getting down real skinny? They ate less food.”
Shamblin’s cult was well-known for its strict enforcement of rules and harsh punishments for disobedience. Local News Channel 5 reported that several lawsuits had been filed alleging Lara demanded employees believe what she believed, and former converts have come forward to claim Lara was viewed as a prophet. In a recording obtained by Channel 5, Lara told her congregation, “I have not been put in this position because I’m going to put up with you all’s disobedience. If I hear of it, then I will correct it. If I have to come to you, then you’re really in trouble.”
In 2004, two parents who were part of this cult were arrested and charged with the felony murder of their child after locking their child up for several days for being “disobedient.” Prior to the arrest, Shamblin praised the mother for her abusive actions toward her children. “That’s a miracle,” she stated in a recording. “You’ve got a child that’s going from just bizarre down to in-control. So I praise God.”
Shamblin has openly rejected the doctrine of the Trinity, placing her religious views deeply within the bounds of rank heresy. Like most cult leaders, Shamblin believed herself to be a prophet receiving personal and direct revelation from God which she alone had the authority to safeguard on behalf of her followers.
Sadly, her life has ended and she–along with the other six members who died in the plane crash–have all heard those dreaded words from the mouth of Jesus: “I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.”
The cult’s website posted a memorial, stating that “as far as Remnant Fellowship Church and Weigh Down Ministries are concerned, Michael Shamblin and Elizabeth Shamblin Hannah, Gwen’s two children, and the church leadership intend to continue the dream that Gwen Shamblin Lara had of helping people find a relationship with God.” Unfortunately, the false god that Shamblin has led so many people to has no power to save and this cult plans to continue marching people directly into Hell along with their founder and leader.