Amway - Whence Cometh It?
is used in the title to alert the reader to the fact that this paper
is written from a Christian perspective,
that is, from the standpoint of one examining all things according
to his or her relationship to the Lord Jesus Christ. I once said,
when becoming an Amway distributor in my pre-Christian days, "God
has sent Rich DeVos and Jay Van Andel to earth to show the world
how business should be done."
Is this not the "American Dream" opportunity
in its finest glory?
I was young, ambitious, dissatisfied,
naive, idealistic, covetous, ignorant, and foolish. I aspired to
make my fortune and to change the world. Chance and circumstance
brought Amway into my life and for the next year I dived right in.
I was impressed, excited, enthused, and so motivated by what I had
seen and heard at Amway pep rallies and conferences that I was prepared
to do almost anything to be part of this "new wave," this wonderful
opportunity, and to succeed.
NOTE: The truth spoken here applies not only to the Amway or the
Britt International organizations, but to any and all multi-level
and other business entities which promote financial independence
and prosperity using religion and God to do so.
Coupled with the verbal caution that this was not a "get-rich-quick
scheme" and that one had to work very hard to get anywhere in Amway
was the constant promise of economic and psychological dreams come
true, having anything heart could desire in this world.
fine homes, cars, yachts, planes, motor homes, resorts (owned),
awards, dining out, leisure life, sports, financial, social and
occupational independence, long and luxurious vacations, more than
a comfortable retirement, college or university education for my
children, all the things money could buy. All this while a self-operating
organization worked for me, even in my absence. Perhaps the icing
on the cake was that I could deduct everything from my income taxes,
having my cake and eating it too, finally easing somewhat that feared
Revenue Canada dilemma.
Is this not the stuff this world's dreams are made of? Is this not
the "American Dream" opportunity in its finest glory? No more death,
no more taxes?!
If only people got half as excited about the Lord
Jesus Christ, Who redeemed them with His precious blood, as they
do about Amway, Rich DeVos, PV, BV, LOC, SA8, networking, financial
and occupational independence, free enterprise, tropical vacations,
leisure life, big houses, and all those things of this world!
this not therefore a cult? If any religious group went out with
such enthusiasm, trying to recruit and to sell their product or
even give it away, would it not be condemned as a cult? Are not
the Moonies and the Mormons and the "Jehovah's Witnesses" condemned
by many as "cults" for similar reasons?
Amway is a
religion, consuming lives, preached as the answer to our woes.
One may say that they are
spreading false doctrine and false Christian notions and practices,
adding to and taking away from the Scriptures, thereby making
themselves "cults." But I see no difference here. Countless numbers of times
I have heard the Lord referred to in Amway, finding even myself
doing it though I was not yet a believer. One will find it so in
many speeches and private conversations.
I have no doubt that Amway is
a religion, one consuming lives in very real terms, zealously
preached and defended by multitudes of its members, whether directly
as the answer to all our woes. Indeed, I thought and spoke
in his book, Compassionate Capitalism, says,
speaking of the world's woes, "And compassionate capitalism is the
best if not the only way that we can bring hope and healing to the
world." I was amazed in reading those words. How does a professing
believer make such a statement?
Certainly great good seems to be
done in and through Amway. Divorce rates are purportedly down among
Amway distributors, marriages "healing," Biblical morals and ethics
are preached, charities and "good" causes are supported. (But did
not the Pharisees do these things and more? Were they therefore
accepted of God?) Debts are overcome by some (though increased by
others), the environment is somewhat considered, quality and guaranteed
satisfaction are promised and relatively speaking, delivered.
from a true believer's perspective, Jesus Christ is the One and
Only Hope. Did He not say concerning these last days that "except
those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved:
but for the elect's sake, those days shall be shortened"? Does Amway
really think that they are or will be that vehicle by
which the Lord will intervene? I perceive great yet subtle error with Amway.
Jesus also said that "as the days of Noah were, so shall also the
coming of the Son of man be. For as in the days that were before
the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in
marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark, and knew
not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also
the coming of the Son of man be."
Are Amway people the chosen or elect of God
simply because they
Many of those people were also "set
for life," not knowing that they were set for death instead.
Many of them were out preaching "the good life," "sponsoring," building,
vacationing, retiring, doing all those things that the worldly-minded
are wont to do. Yes, the earth was filled with violence then. We
picture brutality and murder in the physical, and there was such,
but the word "violence" includes in its meaning "unjust gain" (Strong's
Concordance). This paper will tell you that there is great violence
in and by Amway and the Lord is not one bit pleased.
is often touted by leaders and followers alike to be "recession-proof."
Are Amway people the chosen or elect of God simply because they
are Amway? Are they safe and secure from the judgment of God which
comes upon the whole world in these last days because they are into
Throughout the Bible, in both Old and New Testaments
and throughout history since, God sent sword, famine, pestilence
and wild beast for judgment of sin and wickedness. In the days of
Noah, He destroyed almost every living thing (including sons of
God), and He said that it would be in these last days as in the
days of Noah, that there would be severe judgment. Are Amway people
immune to God's judgment simply because they have an independent
business, because they are free enterprisers, entrepreneurs?
Is it, as
they say, that if they need more money, they can simply go out and
work harder, sell more product or sponsor more people to duplicate
themselves? Can they indeed "write their own pay cheque" as they
What does James say to believers about this? "Go to now,
you that say, Today or tomorrow we will go into such a city and
continue there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain: whereas you
know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It
is even a vapour, that appears for a little time, and then vanishes
away. For that you ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall live,
and do this, or that. But now you rejoice in your boastings: all
such rejoicing is evil" (James 4:13,14).
Yes, all things in business relative and constant,
Amway has certain significant advantages (as well as disadvantages)
to other businesses and business methods or systems. But the Lord
is Lord, and with Him, nothing but He remains constant...nothing...not
And in this last day, even those things which have
weathered centuries and even millennia of volatile and chaotic
history, those greatest of institutions of this world, shall not
only be shaken, but utterly cast down to rise no more. Their glory
shall be taken away. It is time now, as in the past, for the big
things to come down. It is time for the hills to be levelled and
the valleys to be filled. It is a day of the humbling of the great
things of this world, Amway included. Is not Amway great in this
world? Who can question that it is?
Is this not tantamount to building an altar
of worship to an idol?
Even Heaven itself is shaken in this last day, as the Hebrews writer
says, "See that you refuse not Him that speaks. For if they escaped
not who refused him that spoke on earth, much more shall not we
escape, if we turn away from Him that speaks from Heaven: Whose
voice then shook the earth: but now He has promised, saying, Yet
once more I shake not the earth only but also Heaven. And this word,
'Yet once more', signifies the removing of those things that are
shaken, as of things that are made, that those things which cannot
be shaken may remain" (Hebrews 12:26,27).
short for "The American Way," the way of democracy
and free enterprise and presumably "God-fearing." Surely who can
argue that democracy and free enterprise are not better, at least
in some ways, than communism or socialism or so many other "isms"?
The proof is in the pudding. If we compare certain aspects
of our systems of government and business to that of some other systems,
But let me add some perspective. Much of our capitalism
has been very ungodly, selfish and has hurt many, socially, economically,
politically, environmentally, spiritually. Whether it be people
in the "third world" who have labored for cheap wages, or distributors
in Amway, exploited by the stronger, democratic "free enterprisers,"
our systems are not the answer, as DeVos would have
us to believe.
Why is a system paid homage to? Why is an edifice built to free
enterprise as Amway has done? Is this not tantamount to building
an altar of worship to an idol? What is the difference? Because
they don't literally call it a god, is it therefore not a god and
their worship of it not idolatry? Why is it that free enterprise
is preached? Is that what John or Jesus or any of His disciples
the year I was in Amway until the Lord took me out, I not only
made nothing but it cost me (not that I should expect a profit
in my first year or two). Then I discovered that many others who
had talked me into Amway and who had promised me so much wealth
and who purposely exhibited the impression that they were financially
successful, had made absolutely nothing either. Many a direct distributor
(not just distributors), many of them in the business for years,
had dropped out, having worked hard, late into many evenings
holding product demonstrations, selling, recruiting, helping recruits,
going to rallies and conferences, etc., finally packing it in.
I am told that out of 3 million distributors presently in Amway
(besides the millions that have come and gone and are now forgotten
since the beginning of Amway in 1959), only about a fifth of them
make money. Steve Butterfield, in his book Amway: The Cult of Free
Enterprise (published by Black Rose Books, Buffalo\Montreal), suggests
that 97% of distributors make no money. From my experience, I would
be inclined to believe Mr. Butterfield. And of course the law of
nature is such that some make, some don't, some make more and others
less. No problem.
In its rise to power and success, Amway has
strewn its path with many a corpse.
But the problem I do find is that there has been
a lot of intensive effort on the part of many who have nothing to
show for it despite being promised the sun and stars "if they only
work hard or smart enough." You and I have seen countless numbers
work far less and earn far more at other occupations without all
the hype and promise. Through it all, Amway prospered but the workers
then what happened with the drop-outs? "They were lazy, or didn't
work hard enough," we were told, or, "they maybe worked hard
but they didn't work smart," or, "they didn't help their downlines
as they should have," or, "they didn't go to enough seminars
and rallies," or, "they didn't apply the right formula," or any
number of other reasons. It is never, I repeat, never Amway's
I tell you this day that in its rise to power and success and glory,
I perceive that Amway has strewn its path with many a corpse. These
corpses are people who have suffered financially, socially, psychologically
and spiritually, traumatized with guilt, with a "loser-complex."
I wonder if any other company has had such a great number of casualties
as has Amway. It is highly doubtful.
Violence! Amway, your judgment
comes and does not linger. And your judgment is more severe than
that of many others because you use the Name of the Lord and pretence
to get gain.
There is no allowance made for the dropout in Amway. There is no
good reason or excuse for him. He is a loser. He lacked vision,
he was negative or lazy, he didn't attend enough rallies, he wasn't
committed, he didn't have enthusiasm, he didn't catch the vision,
he didn't "let Amway get into him." Worst of all, if he had the
capabilities and still quit, he had no regard for those he left
behind. He was selfish and irresponsible.
I hate to think of the
mental burdens so many people have carried away with them after
spending years of hard work and high hopes in Amway. I was only
there for less than a year and it impacted me to some extent. Frankly,
it occurs to me that this paper might be used to help a few souls
get de-programmed, consoled, healed, made free. Truth and truth alone
When in Amway, I was led to think that there was really no excuse
or good reason for anyone to not be an Amway distributor. "Who,"
I thought, "could be so stupid as to not see the wonderful opportunity
in Amway afforded to all walks of life?" There was no room for
plumbers or carpenters or rocket scientists or doctors or sales
clerks or garbage collectors or welders or farmers. They should
all be in Amway and sooner or later should leave what they are
doing and go Amway all the way.
I saw many an unhappy child in Amway.
There was also no room for the weak-minded
or the dull or the unenergetic. It reminds me of the movie Logan's
Run where all of humanity was ultimately underground, worshipping
and controlled by a computer, leaving the sun, greenery and weather
behind forever, robbed of all things natural and once normal. The
aged and infirm had all been eliminated.
are some prevalent myths concerning Amway and I will mention
only a few here. The job of debunking these myths was done quite
capably by Steve Butterfield in his insightful and discriminating
book mentioned earlier.
One of these myths was "having time for
family." I recall that distributors were urged to "show the plan"
as often as was possible, that the law of averages was on their
side the more often they showed the plan to prospects and helped
new recruits to do the same.
Now when one shows the plan, it is
obviously not advisable to have children interrupting. I constantly
saw children left at home or with babysitters so that both parents
conducted their business, often in the evenings when others were
available from work to be free to listen and participate. Understandable.
I and many other Amway distributors, especially directs, spent
a lot of time, energy and money organizing and attending rallies and
conferences. To many of these, children simply did not come. Extra
seats on planes and rooms in motels and hotels were costly (tax-deductible
or not), children were distracting or had to go to school (rallies
couldn't wait for the summer holidays), etc. Often they didn't
even if the rally was in their home town.
So with children at
school during the day and the parents busy at night, where is the family
time? It was the hope of some distributors that once they had
their business to the size they wanted, they could give their
children that quality family time that was promised. It never
happened. I saw many an unhappy child in Amway. More accurately put,
parents were in Amway and the children were out of it. Nor was
their unhappiness because they weren't in Amway but because their parents
Friends of ours had a ten-year old daughter who said to them, "You
love Amway more than you love me." We saw her in about six years
time utterly rebelling against them. She had never been given that
attention she needed. Nine years later, we heard that she
was a drug addict with drug babies which her parents had to take
care of in their old age because the daughter, in her mid-twenties,
was running around with the men, often attracting the police to her
parents' home at all hours of the night. After years of
enthusiasm and work, as Ruby directs, these people dropped it all.
What a legacy of Amway!
Amway says, "Family
noble, but God wants God first.
Certainly one may argue that it wasn't necessarily Amway's fault.
There are always many factors and nothing is so "cut and dry."
My point is that I saw many families neglected rather than nurtured,
according to the promise implicit and explicit, while parents were
"building the business." The fact too is that Amway promotes the
idea that it is a "couple's business" so that both mother and father
must be involved, leaving no parent with the children.
what if there was family unity? So what? Does
that make Amway morally and spiritually viable, acceptable to God?
in Amway consider the Mormons to be a cult yet Mormons promote
family, and their lifestyle, eating habits included, seems to be
giving them longevity of life. The same holds true for Seventh Day
Adventists. The Orientals, though Buddhists and of other eastern
religions, honor their elderly, taking care of them in their own
homes to the grave, which is more than can be said for what is often
the case in Western culture. Nor have many of these in the east
had democracy or free enterprise. So must one worship Amway and
free enterprise or be Chinese or Buddhist or Mormon for these things?
Amway says, "Family first." Sounds noble, but God wants God
first. Jesus said, "Don't think that I've come to send peace on earth:
I didn't come to send peace, but a sword. For I've come to set
a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against
her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.
And a man's foes shall be they of his own household. He that loves
father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me: and he that
loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he
that doesn't take his cross, and follow after Me, is not worthy
of Me" (Matthew 11:34-38). It is a false doctrine to suggest that
Jesus preached family unity. He never did.
The Lord says, "He that finds his life shall lose it, and he that
loses his life for My sake shall find it" (Mt. 11:39). But Amway
says, very boldly, very brashly, "Find your life! Get a life! Think
of yourself, your future, your family and their future! He that
doesn't provide for his house is an infidel!" They take the Scriptures
and interpret their meaning to suit their agenda but the interpretations
are in direct contradiction to the meaning and purpose that the
Another myth is that Amway is so concerned and responsible about
the environment. My wife and I and many other families have not
used most commercial cleaning agents in our homes for years. If
Amway was so interested in the environment and health of all, they
would be teaching all to use baking soda, salt, vinegar, borax,
lemon juice, washing soda, olive oil, rubbing alcohol, white flour
and ammonia as cleaning and polishing agents instead of "compassionately
capitalizing" on far more expensive and still relatively detrimental
chemical cleaning and polishing agents.
it great?!" was the oft-repeated expression among Amway
people as they greeted one another with hearty handshakes and energetic
smiles. The air was often electric and indeed it was exciting to
be among Amway people. Make no mistake of that. I enjoyed myself,
and to this day have not regretted the experience. In Amway, I
came out of boredom, found hope I didn't have before, had something
to live for (relatively speaking), met many friends, learned many
things. I even suspect that in the sharing of the Lord by a few
people while I was in Amway, I eventually came to know the Lord.
Seeds were sown, I think, though I'm not sure. (More on that later.)
The spirit of goodwill was utterly void in
the highest of distributors.
about the unconditional satisfaction guarantee? I discovered
the hard way that the satisfaction guarantee wasn't all it was
promised to new distributors. Customers usually didn't have a problem
but distributors did.
When becoming a direct, I was then brought
into more inner circles and informed of some realities quite hidden
from the general public. One of these was that we directs should "eat" the returns, sparing Amway Corp. the trouble, unless there
was defect, in which case, it ought to be sent to Amway to alert
them to problems. I found such to be curious and unsettling.
directs were party to this, so were their Diamond directs and their
Double Diamond directs above them, as well as directs running alongside,
outside of our "leg." But when it came to packing in two to three
thousand dollars worth of inventory because I was leaving the business
(most of that inventory current), my directs would not accept it.
And their Diamonds would not accept it though we all lived in the
same city area.
I had to pack it and ship it from Winnipeg to Amway in
London, Ontario fully discounted not only for PV but for handling,
besides shipping. While it is therefore technically true that
Amway does give a refund, in my case it came at considerable cost and
I took a beating. The spirit of goodwill was utterly void in the
highest of distributors. The hype was all sham when it was down
to the wire. The reality behind the scenes was quite disconcerting.
I did not complain, I did not think, I just took it on the chin
and was gone, not because of virtue so much as ignorance.
The situation was not such because I had a bad personal relationship
with any, at least not from my end. In fact, I truly thought I
had some very good friends. But there certainly was a shadow cast
upon us with my decision (not a light one) to leave.
Now "Why didn't
they take my inventory?" is the question. Was it because they didn't
have the money? That's very possible. Or was it because their inventory
flow wasn't as good as they liked me to think? Again, very possible.
Or was it that their PV would be adversely affected for the month,
leaving them with less discount on their total purchases? Most
So where then is this "giving" and "helping" and "hand-up-ing"?
I had become financially distressed and needed to make some changes
very soon or declare personal bankruptcy, already in a position
to do so. I needed help. I was not looking for a hand-out. I would
have been so glad to receive a "hand-up" as I was so often reminded
by all those above me that Amway distributors purportedly gave to
If there was ever a conditional love, it is
that of Amway.
I discovered as I do now declare in this writing, that the "hand-ups" were there only if to my pockets; the hand-uppers were
instantly given opportunity to be "hand-inners." There was no true
giving whatsoever, not by any, all the way up the line to Amway
Corp itself. Clearly, the system is set up to profit and there is
no provision made for the down-and-outer. The code of ethics is
preached for profit, without mercy. Ain't it great!
That there is true love in Amway is the greatest myth of all. Amway
preaches love, love of God and love of neighbor. I know their love.
I have experienced it for myself, witnessed it showered on many
others, have heard of it from yet others and I have read Steve Butterfield's
book which describes very accurately and eloquently the love of
Amway in another section of Amway from the one I was involved in.
The two are identical and confirm what I saw and do declare, not
that I need confirmation. I dare say that what I speak of is universal
in Amway and people in any part of Amway as distributors will be
able to identify, by the grace of God.
It is a selfish love, a
greedy love, a self-serving love, which of course, is not true
love. "I love you, you listen to me, believe me, do as I say, produce
and you will continue in my love. Otherwise I'll have nothing more
to do with you than I absolutely have to. If you can't see a golden
opportunity when it stares you in the face, you are a loser and I don't
company with losers because I am a winner. Eagles don't hang out
If there was ever a conditional love, it is that of Amway. I gave
up my friends and family for Amway, being taught to part company
with them if they didn't "believe" in Amway's marvellous opportunity
lest they should dampen my spirit, hold me back, be a negative
influence on me. It was Amway or the highway. It is "I AM way."
If there was no money in it for Amway, there was no allowance, no
mercy, no understanding, no tolerance, no patience, only contempt,
howbeit contempt with a forced "I AM way" smile.
The trigger to writing this paper was a new neighbor arranging to
show us how to "set up an independent wholesale\retail business
and make $50,000 a year part-time." I asked him if it was Amway
and he hesitantly acknowledged that it was. I thought, "No, I've
been there," but I also thought, "Perhaps I need to keep an open
mind, listen to what he has to say, maybe things have changed over
the many years and maybe it's time to do something here." (It was time to do something after all, after 27 years, but I didn't realize
it was this paper.)
Amway is a church, and they have made the
house of God a den of thieves.
He spoke glowingly about principles, ethics,
love, God, family, doing right, etc. They had their meeting with
us and we listened. He got back a week later to see where we were
at. We had talked of Biblical matters before but when we got to
speaking of Biblical matters that last evening, he surprisingly
and abruptly became angry and stomped out, cancelling everything that
had been planned for the future between us. When asked, "What did
we say to upset you?" the only thing he would say was, "Leave
it to\with me." The only things we could tell were:
1) that we were not panning out as a prospect as he had hoped,
2) we spoke of the Lord and quoted Scripture, and
3) perhaps most importantly, we told him that we did not go to church
anywhere, yet we spoke of the Lord and quoted the Bible. "Churchgo-ers"
have a hard time with that. "How dare you talk about God without
going to church! Just who do you think you are?! You're a cult
of some kind, aren't you? I'm out of here right now!" He did say,
"You're full of it," and refused to hear us out or listen to any
Scripture that might shed light on what we were saying and why.
"You can make the Bible say anything," he said, as if anything we
read from the Bible had no valid interpretation by us whatsoever
and that only his church had it all right.
This is an unusual and bizarre case in the extreme reaction, but
the common message and the similarities are there, namely that
though many churchgo-ers will not accept your speech of God while
you are outside the religious system (those without the mark of
the beast are not allowed to buy nor sell), you can talk of God
while in some church or in Amway. The two are one; Amway is a church,
a religious system, make no mistake of that, and they have made
the house of God a den of thieves.
More accurately, they have made
a den of thieves to parade as, or to be intimate with, the house
of God, for mammon's sake. Because men are religious, they think
to believe in and to please God. But there is great difference between
religiosity and true faith, between religion and reality. In fact,
the two are diametrically opposed to each other, the one being
CHRIST-ian, the other ANTI-CHRIST-ian. ("Anti" does not mean "against"
so much as "instead of.") "In vain do they worship Me with
their lips but their hearts are far from Me," said Jesus.
My question was "Is this love the kind Amway teaches or is it the
kind churches teach?" My answer is that both teach this love. It
is a conditional love. It is self-righteousness in full strength.
It is the love of this world, Satan's love which appears good and
which men savor.
Amway propagates a counterfeit love over the
"Believe as we do or we hate you, though we may
insist otherwise and dutifully, condescendingly show ourselves
friendly." It is a separatistic love, not based on the difference
between good and evil, right and wrong, but on perceived quality
of character and personality, on goals, on one's response to the
other's doctrine, methodology, philosophy, or aspirations. No room
for the weak or the poor or the stranger here unless these allow
the knight from Amway Castle to transform them through SA8 and
Yes, "birds of a feather flock together;" yes, we company with
those of like interests; but if interests are amoral, must there be
a despising of those with differences, except where it might pay
to be friendly? This is not love but the opposite. It is diabolical,
the savorings of men and an offence to God Who is Love.
a counterfeit love over the earth as some invasive alien creature
posing as a benefactor, laying eggs in secret places, impregnating
people themselves, only to take over human beings and transform
them into zombie-like creatures of its own kind, claiming to be
from God, yet totally opposed to what God intends for mankind.
But what is the big deal? What is the charge? Why should I single
out Amway? Are they as bad as, or any worse than the multitudes
of other business organizations out there? Worse. Without a doubt.
The essence of the problem is that there is a mixture, an unholy
mixture called a holy one. Most businesses don't have that, and
will even take credit for their evils. Though they may make pretence,
they do not take upon themselves the Name of the Lord in vain to
do so. That is the heinous difference.
other things, Amway is deceitful above many. "Whatever you
do, when you go sponsoring, don't tell them it's Amway; don't tell
them it's selling soap; don't tell them it's selling period." Whether
spoken or otherwise, apprentices are told to be evasive, cagey,
deceptive. They are taught to play hard to get.
"Well, my appointment
book is filled right up for two weeks (looking at an empty one).
How about two weeks from tomorrow?" When asked what they do, a typical
answer is (in concentrated form), "I set up independent, part-time,
wholesale businesses to be worked out of the home with no investment
necessary." My, how important sounding!
One soon learns, if having
gotten involved, that there is no independence, "part-time" is often
short-lived or mythical altogether, "out of the home" means one
is seldom home, and indeed the investment becomes substantial, not
only in money, but in commitment, energy, time, sleep, freedom,
private life, other activities,
social and family relationships.
Amway delivers the very opposite of that which
Amway lies. They call it discretion, wisdom, tact, practicality,
anything but the truth, a lie.
Amway is deceitful. When trying to impress distributor candidates,
Amway leaders often quote their own PV chegues or that of others.
"So-and-so's cheque from Amway last month was $2800. Not bad for
part time, eh? Ain't it great?" What they don't tell you is that
the month before, it was only $700 and this month it was or will
They make it sound like a steady, consistently increasing
income which is usually not the case. As importantly, they do not
tell you that at least half and as much as all, yes, all of that
paycheque may have to be paid out to distributors below for their
PV. After all, it was their volume that got that paycheque coming
in the first place.
But they quite often appropriately fail to
disclose that matter or they do so with muffled, casual tones in an insincere
attempt to "be open and honest," much like the function of very
fine print in advertisements. After all, "Big" and "Lots"
speak loudly. Who cares what "Profitless" has to say? Amway
delivers the very opposite of that which it promises. Amway lies.
Amway is deceitful. "Never let anyone know if you're having a bad day. Frowners never win and smilers never lose. They don't need
to know your troubles. Be enthusiastic, cheerful, positive; be an
example; display success. Remember the boy who goes by the graveyard
on his way home at night, terrified. He starts to whistle as though
he isn't afraid, and pretty soon he isn't afraid and he's home safe
and sound. Dress in your best, no matter what you are doing or
where you are going. You may run into a prospect who eventually
turns Diamond for you. And don't tell people what you're making
or how many distributors you have. It's none of their business."
(That may be true, but why promise prospects so much more than what
you are able to do yourself?)
No room for reality, for honesty, for revealing your humanity. Jesus
wept at Lazarus' tomb but if it was up to a Direct, he would have
said, "Ain't it great?" If I have learned anything, it is that
people are at times encouraged in their spiritual walk to see me
weak and human and honest about it, rather than witnessing some
spiritual giant to whom they cannot relate.
They think their righteousness comes by the
outward acts and appearances.
I recall my directs
once going through a very difficult time. They lost a newborn baby.
She bared her heart for a short time with me. Though I was clued
out, young, single, so insensitive, and not a believer at the time,
their honesty and reality spoke to me far more than all their hype
and "enthusiasm" ever did or could. I would have done more for
them then than ever. Amway can only think of itself in its own image
and has refused to be honest, and that, in the name of integrity.
Now I must say something that will anger many (as though I haven't
already). Over the years, we have been exposed to many different
"Christian" groups and churches and I have had the strong, abiding
impression that none are as utterly self-righteous as are the Dutch
or Christian or Netherland Reform. Somehow they have a spirit of
putrid self-righteousness that knows no doubt or shame.
one of them is like that; I know some that don't seem that way,
but generally speaking such has been the case. They see themselves
as the "rightest" of all. They can't even stand each other.
There are almost as many Reformed Reform churches as there are of anything
and they are still Reforming. At the drop of a hat
(a woman's hat perhaps), or with a wrong look, they split and
build a new Reformed Church.
I have also seen that when any person or
people place any emphasis on outward matters, self-righteousness and
judgmental spirit are automatic. The Reform people dress a certain
way, keep their hair a certain way and function religiously
in certain ways, apart from others. They call it holiness or right living.
I call it filthy rags, used menstrual ones, that is.
their righteousness comes by the outward acts and appearances.
they smile or wave or say something about God to you, anything,
they've done their duty and have demonstrated that they are
righteous ones and are guaranteed a place of honor in Heaven
when the time comes. Theory, dress and Reform church membership are
Who needs the righteousness of God, though they think
that is what they have? I tell you, if any need reforming, it is
If they are the fruit of the Reformation, may I make a radical
Let's reunite with the Catholic Church! I speak with tongue-in-cheek.
At least Catholics, generally, aren't trying to be something
I believe it is God Who has sent me a Netherland Reform Amway distributor
in these recent days to demonstrate the essence of Amway and provoke
me to write this paper. Amway people (those very involved) are
a self-righteous bunch indeed. Where did this start? In some "leg"
of Amway? Did it creep in from the outside? No. It came from the
original seed. It came from the top. It came from Reform people.
It came from the founders of Amway.
They preach truths (not truth) as a means to
the end of worldly profit.
In Amway, Mystery Babylon the Great is in all her fulness and glory.
She is the Great Whore and Mother of harlots. She is a mixture,
such an unholy one, appearing so beautiful, so powerful and wise.
Truly, she is all these things and more, by the world's definitions.
But she takes that which is God's and merchandises those things
for her own sake. So too do her children. They preach truths (not
truth) as a means to the end of worldly profit. She, as the harlot, "loves," entices the unsuspecting, simple and lusting to partake
with her, promising pleasures of all sorts...all the lusts of the
flesh fulfilled. These things she does in the name of love, and
attaches God's Name to it all.
One of the primary "gifts" Mystery gives her followers, clients,
victims is power and recognition, the spotlight. Amway people,
by virtue of persuading many to sell soap and to persuade others
to do so, and by becoming noted for doing so, become counsellors,
motivators and psychoanalysts to one and to all.
They become experts
in business, public relations, marriage and family life, morals,
Biblical principles, character-building, education, politics, economics,
personal finances, public speaking, the environment, social behaviour,
religion, you name it. With a Direct Distributor's pin or even
less, they become all these things, and with a Diamond pin, they
simply become more of what they have become.
Provided Amway gets
the glory, they have full opportunity on stage and in many a living room
to speak forth their glory and wisdom. PV has had more power to
transform people into heroes and preachers and "prophets" than
anything else I've ever witnessed.
God took 40 to 80 years to form
and prepare Moses for his calling but Amway can do the job in
far less time and expand on one's capabilities and qualifications far
beyond what Moses had. Mystery Babylon has marvellous ways of
an ego to wondrous proportions. And it is all called, or comes
under the banner of, "love." Truly, she is the harlot and the mother of
harlots. She is manifest in Amway.
Mystery makes one to feel and to look good...very good, but the
end, dear readers, leads to death itself. It is naught but a trap,
a hideous one in which one loses all...finances, independence, security,
family, self-respect, Godly values...all the very things Amway
promises one will have in "the business." All these things perish
even, if not especially, for the ones who apparently gained them
all. One can be rich in this world and so very poor. Often the
richest are the poorest. "How hard is it for a rich man to enter
into the Kingdom of Heaven!" It is one thing to forsake all for
Christ. It is abomination to do so for mammon, for Amway or for
any other person or thing. Such is idolatry.
people in Amway who shared with me about the Lord were not consumed
with Amway and are no longer in it (many of them having been Directs)
but the people which were consumed with Amway, though professing
to know the Lord or seeing themselves as serving God and doing
good, did not much desire to speak to me about the Lord except
where it would profit them in their conscience and image. I suspect
some of those are still in Amway, "successfully."
Success in Amway is not what
life is about at all...far from it.
There were others
too who revelled in their success, drinking deep, saying it was
God Who should get the glory and praise but it seems to me, in retrospect,
that it was questionable as to whom they referred. Was it God the
Creator as revealed in Jesus Christ or was it Mammon?
(a Diamond or so at the time) held Sunday services and after church
would sponsor people into Amway! Giving people the old "hand-up"
treatment. One night he was crossing the road from his home to
his Amway office and warehouse and was struck and killed by a drunken
driver. Accident? No.
Their sponsors, who paraded minks and jewelry
at an Amway fashion show and luncheon, also tasted tragedy,
the wife dying prematurely of disease. Happenstance? No.
I do not condemn
these people. I do point out the fruits and that success in
Amway is not what life is about at all...far from it. People, you may
plan out your nest eggs, your retirement, your independence in this world
but not your independence of God and of His righteousness.
God solemnly promised that none of these kinds of things would happen
to those who believed and obeyed Him. Persecution? Yes. Martyrdom?
Yes. Weariness, troubles, sorrows and sufferings of many sorts?
Yes. But not accidental and miserable deaths by disease. Such are
not the lot of faithful followers of the Lord.
Jesus said, "No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate
the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and
despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon." I see Amway
serving mammon in the Name of God. I see many in Amway using God
and goodness for gain.
They boast about giving people not a hand-out
thereby humiliating them but rather a "hand-up" so that they can
learn to help themselves. Fine. But I do not believe that true
giving is with profit in mind. If one wishes to recruit and gain
from it, fine, but don't bring God into the picture saying
how great good has come by being in Amway and by giving.
One may or may not receive mammon while worshipping God but do not
give people the impression that they will receive God by worshipping
mammon. Amway preaches fulfilment through Amway, through economic
independence. That is both heresy and blasphemy. It is a lie.
"Seek first the Kingdom of
God; have faith; preach the Kingdom of God."
is never in externals. Jesus said that a man's life does not consist
in the abundance of that which he possesses. The apostle Paul suffered
the loss of all things for Christ. Was he unfulfilled? Where was
HIS "nest egg"? I'll tell you where it was, along with his heart.
It was in the Kingdom of Heaven, with the Lord whom he loved and
served faithfully. His fulfillment was not of this world.
According to Amway, Jesus should have come sponsoring people (perhaps
particularly the poor) into a capitalistic organization "full of
compassion," teaching them all how to run an independent business
out of their homes, reaching out to the whole world through a business
vehicle. Instead, He called upon people to lay down their lives,
literally lose them in many cases, to be hated and persecuted by
Their first message was not, "Hey! We can get you financial
independence and freedom; we can get you a wonderful home and car
and vacations and early retirement; we can get you family harmony
and unity." But what was the message? "Seek first the Kingdom of
God; have faith; preach the Kingdom of God; preach the gospel;
forsake all, deny yourself; take up the cross; die; forsake family,
possessions, ambitions and, you'll know the truth and the truth
will make you free, and when the Son of man makes you free, you
will be free indeed!"
The rich young ruler could well have been a Triple Diamond Direct
who was teaching many to have their financial independence. He
kept the law from his youth, he said. He had his own righteousness
which is by the law. Was he involved in "compassionate capitalism"
or did he fall short of the glory of and acceptance with God because
he did not have a networking business to share with others? Did
he fail because he did not have a myriad of quality products for
home and personal care to sell to others and which he could sponsor
them to sell?
What an emphasis Amway places upon putting away a nest egg for the
future! But what did the Lord tell the rich young ruler to do?
"One thing you lack: Go, sell all that you have and give it to
the poor, and you'll have treasure in Heaven..." I think that Amway
preaches the very opposite. "Don't help the poor so that you'll
have treasure in Heaven, forsaking any opportunity to have treasure
on earth. Rather, help the poor so that you can prosper here and
now, in this world. Opportunity knocks. Profits from recruiting
and residual sales are your way to easy living."
Speaking of easy
living: Though Amway devotees declare with their mouths the truth
that there is no such thing as a free lunch or that Amway is not
a get-rich-quick scheme, yet there is that constant message of getting
something for nothing. They tell you of how once you get the business
going, you can holiday anywhere you please for as long as you please.
Look up what God is saying to such people in
They tell you that your tax burden will be so much lighter
because even your daily living expenses and pleasures can be written
as business expense. They tell you that direct labor is the poor and foolish
man's way of eking out a livelihood. The carrot of financial freedom
and happiness is ever dangled and pursued, make no mistake. Sadly,
many in pursuit of something for nothing have gotten nothing for
something. And the something many got turned to dust in their hands
when they got it. Gaining the world and losing the soul. Isn't that
the way the laws of God work?
Jesus spoke of a man who concentrated on his nest egg. This man's
granaries were full so that he had no more room to store his abundance.
Talk about financial freedom! (Or is it bondage)?
He said, "I'll
tear down the old granaries and build bigger ones wherein I can
store it all. And I will say to my soul, Soul, you have much goods
laid up for many years; take your ease, eat, drink, and be merry."
Look up what God is saying to such people in Luke 12:20. In case
that "bug" of leisure life or independence has bitten you too hard,
here is what the Lord said: "You fool, this night your soul shall
be required of you: then whose shall those things be, which you
have provided?" No, he may not have been helping others but he may
have been more innocent than those in Amway in that he was not serving
to destroy and to rob as many either.
Amway says, "Work hard, sacrifice and you'll get there. Find out
the secrets of recruiting from your uplines...they know how to
do it." But God says, "...the race is not to the swift, nor the
battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches
to men of understanding, nor yet favor to men of skill; but time
and chance happens to them all."
David once said, "I was once young and now I am old, and I have
yet to see the righteous forsaken or his seed begging bread" (Amway
or no Amway, I might add).
Oh yes, the argument of those who justify themselves before men
is repeated over and over. It goes like this: "It is not money but
the LOVE of money that is the root of all evil." A truth is used
defensively by those who have deceived themselves by the deceitfulness
of riches into thinking that they do not love money. But dear reader,
how is it that all those things that money buys are ever promised
and preached and calculated and emphasized and shamelessly displayed
in the Amway business, right from the start?
While the one side preaches to take stock of one's financial future,
the other side speaks on this wise: "Take no thought as to what
you'll eat or drink or wear (for after all these things do the Gentiles
(unbelievers) seek), for your Heavenly Father knows you have need
of all these things."
Jesus also said, "Take therefore no thought
for tomorrow: for tomorrow shall take thought for the things of
itself. Sufficient to the day is the evil thereof."
Beware, you who think Amway
is the answer. “No
man can serve two masters.”
Amway says, "Lay up treasures on earth and help others to do the same. Here's
how!" The Gentiles (unbelievers) seek these things and readily embrace
such a message. But what does the Lord say? "Lay not up for yourselves
treasures upon earth, where moth and rust do corrupt, and where
thieves break through and steal: but lay up for yourselves treasures
in Heaven, where neither moth nor rust do corrupt, and where thieves
do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there
will your heart be also."
Amway people truly think that they are enlightened beyond the rest
of the world. They can't understand why so many people are so dull,
so obtuse, so "negative." And truly, there are many of those kinds
of people. Aren't we all dull and negative, at one time or another,
in certain varied ways? The Lord quoted Isaiah as having prophesied
But beware, you who think that Amway is the answer. "The light
of the body is the eye: if therefore your eye be single, your whole
body shall be full of light. But if your eye be evil, your whole
body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is
in you be darkness, how great is that darkness! No man can serve
I see in Amway the attempt of the impossible to the detriment of
many...serving two masters. Truly, only one can and is served.
In Amway, it is not the Lord God.
It is often heard said in Amway that "you will not get into Amway
until Amway gets into you." Indeed, often there is reference to
the spirit of Amway. There is such a spirit. When, in zeal, one
gives himself or herself totally to Amway (or anything for that
matter), he enters into a spiritual territory not of possessing,
but of being possessed.
Because of giving one's self over, this
unwitting idolatry gives Satan the license to send in a controlling
spirit that takes over that person's mental and spiritual faculties.
Some call it "selling one's soul to the Devil." This is not necessarily
a conscious act; at least in most cases it isn't, but just as real
A man's life does not consist
in the abundance of that which he possesses.
One of that spirit's favorite expressions is "Ain't it
great!" Trying to talk to such a one at that point, in terms contrary
in any wise to Amway, is quite fruitless and hopeless. One only
stirs up in such a victim disgust, indignation, condescension, "pity,"
cynicism, scorn, fear, resentment and the like. Then only the Lord
Jesus Christ can deliver, with repentance.
I say to you, dear reader,
that there are many such people in precisely that need in Amway.
Some of these are "successful" outwardly (Satan does bestow temporal
reward, being the prince of this world). But they are inwardly sad
and empty, never satisfied, though adamantly insisting otherwise,
saying, in the spirit of Amway, covetously, to deceive and to snare, "Ain't
it great!" That spirit is also a contagious one but one must give
him or herself to it willingly, wholeheartedly, to catch it.
reader, the truth is what makes one free. If you will only
become honest with yourself, others and with God, you are on your
way to deliverance and restoration. Do not continue to entertain
hopes that somehow you can achieve enough in Amway to make you happy.
It simply is not true.
A man's life, said Jesus, does not consist
in the abundance of that which he possesses. There simply is no
such thing as fulfilment in this world or in what it has to offer.
It is an unbreakable, irrevocable, undeniable law. Believe Jesus
and believe the Bible. He alone gave up all for you so that you
would be delivered from just the sort of bondage you find yourself in
right now. He alone is worthy of your worship. He will never leave
nor forsake you. He IS security itself and everything else you may
need or desire.
In Him only is there perfect escape from both death and taxes. Concerning
death, He promised, saying, "I am the Resurrection and the Life...whosoever
lives and believes in Me shall never die (John 11:25,26). Concerning
taxes, when collectors confronted Peter on paying taxes, the Lord
sent him to catch a fish which, He said, would have a gold coin
in its mouth. With that coin, Peter was to pay the taxes for both
the Lord and himself (Mt.17:24-27). Peter obeyed; the taxes were
paid, even though the taxes weren't really forthcoming. The Lord
preserves and provides.
When Amway and America are gone, the Lord
will still be there.
As a non-Christian, I said, "God has sent Rich DeVos and Jay Van
Andel to earth to show the world how business should be done,"
not understanding what I was witnessing. I would now have to say
that God has been mixed with business for mammon's sake. Therefore
is the wrath of God to be poured out upon Amway.
I do not say nor
do I believe that Rich and Jay or any others set out deliberately
to deceive and to make merchandise of people (it may be so), but
I do say that these kinds of things slowly creep in without notice
as we set out in pursual of the things of this world. The Bible
speaks of the deceitfulness of riches and of how our hearts end
up where our treasures are.
I would that God would grant all mercy
and repentance for His glory and all of our good. I warn all who
value their souls and who would please God, rather than themselves
and man, to repent, and to put their trust in the Lord for their
needs both present and future. When Amway and America, after which
Amway is named, are gone, the Lord will still be there. And He is, as
He promised, sufficient for all things.