I do understand and agree with all of your points.
Maybe we don't argue as well as Friend, but when did the Best Debater have anything to do with knowing and loving God? That's what our religion is supposed to do, enable us to love God as He is in the Bible, and His son Jesus. And yes, it's time to critique our own religion, just like they say we should, and draw our own conclusions for our own lives.
I hadn't thought about your thought on CT Russell. I had read where he referred to himself as the Seventh Messenger, but didn't know who were the first six. 1,2,3,4,5,6,....7? Sounds successive to me. Obviously not through the apostolic succession as taught by the Catholic church....but succession nonetheless. Or is that old lite now? Darn, it's hard to keep them lightbulbs turned to the right power!
Dear 7, Neat post - has it occurred to everyone that there's been a whole lot of arguing lately - and none among the people who just talk about life, jokes, their beliefs, etc?