and The Word of God Ministries is Bruce and Susan Bertram with our kids Lynette, Chris, and Eric. We’re not really a huge formal organization like some. Just a family that reads the Word and tries to do what it says.
Susan had a normal childhood, living pretty much in one place and going to one Disciples of Christ church. Bruce’s childhood was a little more scrambled. Susan had one set of parents; Bruce had six stepdads and four sets of foster parents, getting adopted by the fourth at 14. While Susan went to one elementary, one middle, and one high school, Bruce’s high school was his 20th school. So of course Bruce went to lots of different churches too. He was baptized a Catholic in the first foster home, went to Methodist, Baptist, and Assembly of God churches, and finally stopped for a while at a Baptist church in high school. For a while.
After marrying in 1980, we both decided that we’d like more service than a conventional church could offer, so we went to a Calvary Chapel for three years, then a Wesleyan. Later we moved to Colorado and tried to find a place at an Evangelical Free church, another Calvary Chapel, and about 1997 went to a Bible church where Bruce was an elder for a couple of years. Looking back, it feels like we were always wandering in the desert.
Also about 1997, Susan discovered a book called ‘Signs in the Heavens,’ which was about how Satan had hijacked the signs (through astrology) that God put in the heavens (Genesis 1:14) to tell His story. She was so excited when she found it that she didn’t finish it right away but showed it to Bruce. He read it three times then gave it back to Susan and she read it a bunch. It opened our eyes to the fact that many of God’s ways in Scripture have been kept away from the average church-goer by church tradition and dogma. We began to discover that Torah had been hijacked also, and locked away from Christians by the anti-Semitic teachings of most of the church. The author, Avi ben Mordechai, came to speak at the Bible church and helped us start on the path to learning how to live all of God’s living oracles.
Shortly after we began to put all of the Word into our lives, we were looking around for other authors who might have similar insights and ran across Brad Scott at Wildbranch Ministries. He had (and has) a lot of good information too. Unfortunately, we stopped being friends because we didn’t agree about the two-house teachings (spoken of in Identity Issues). Bruce had studied them at length and decided that they weren’t Scriptural.
We went from there into the Messianic Movement, getting involved somewhat with First Fruits of Zion and even considering moving down to Phoenix to be more of a part. Gradually we came to realize however, that much of that movement is more concerned with Judaism than with the Word of God. While we were going through this stage we were still part of a Bible church where Bruce was an elder and shared the pulpit for a while. However, as we worked some of what we were learning into our teachings the people there slowly worked us out of their church. First by keeping Bruce from the pulpit, then blocking him from teaching adult Sunday school (where several visiting pastors had overheard some of his classes and complimented him in public for the quality), and finally freezing Bruce and Susan out of the church altogether.
After a while we figured out that the Messianic movement was not truly representative of Torah following believers. Bruce was starting to write (and had written quite a bit to his fellow elders at the Bible church defending his new understandings) and found that he needed two things. One was a way to frame his understandings in a simple way, and the other to start a website to share what he was discovering with others of like mind. As he was praying about both around 2001, he feels that God gave him the insight to call his new understanding Whole Bible Christianity. He learned about websites and started the first version of it at about that time too.
It came about that we didn’t see the need to stop calling ourselves Christian just because some had dragged the name through the mud. But we weren’t Jewish, even though we followed the whole Bible. Then it hit – why not call ourselves Whole Bible Christians?
There’s more at http://www.wholebible.com/about.htm