Why the Weider Magazines Use Images of Crosses, Words from Scripture, and Make Christian References in Article Titles

It's All Part of the Indoctrination Process.

This article is part two of "Flex And Muscle & Fitness Magazines Seemed To Be Using Subliminal Messages To Brainwash You!"

One of the first things that you will notice when you open a Muscle & Fitness magazine and look at the table of contents is a bronze sculpture of Joe Weider with his arms folded across his chest.

If you carefully read the statement that is included with this sculpture, you will notice something special. Before I disclose what that is, please take a moment to read the statement for yourself to see if you can detect what I might be referring to.

Here is the statement:

"Strive for excellence, exceed yourself, love your friend, speak the truth, practice fidelity and honor your father and mother.  These principles will help you master yourself, make you strong, give you hope and put you on a path to greatness."(1)

Any ideas?  Did you catch it? O.K., here it is:

The statement above includes one of the 10 Commandments.  It is the fifth commandment that God gives in the Holy Bible found in Exodus 20:12(a) which reads:

Honour thy father and thy mother...

We believe that this portion of Scripture was purposely placed within Weider's statement and then carefully placed next to his bust in Muscle & Fitness' table of contents pages.

Why do we believe that? Because back in the day when we were growing up, it was common practice for our parents to examine our reading material to see if it was fit to be read.

With this being the case, many parents would take a look at the table of contents of any particular magazine to see what type of writings was contained within.

A parent picking up a Weider magazine, would notice the statement that contained one of the 10 Commandments... Honour thy father and thy mother... and instantly, their heart would be won over and the magazine would become approved reading material.

Now, the child, with the Weider magazine in hand, begins to fill his young adolescent and teachable mind with the practices of the bodybuilding lifestyle.

The Reading Material Is Approved and the Indoctrination Process Begins.

In an interview with Joe Weider, Lou Ferrigno stated that Muscle Builder has been his Bible.(2)  For those of you that don't know, Muscle Builder was the name of Joe's magazine before he changed it to Muscle & Fitness.

In an advertisement(3) for Muscle & Fitness, former Mr. Olympia competitor, Boyer Coe states:

"I rely heavily On Muscle & Fitness."

The ad further reads:

"I read it cover-to-cover.  It's the bodybuilders Bible.  I depend on it."

In a portion of an ad seen here for The Weider System, you'll notice that the clip out coupon reads(4):

Dear Joe: I want to make the WEIDER SYSTEM my "Bible"...

In an interview(5), Mr. Olympia competitor, Tom Platz stated:

"At about the age of 14, I came to the conclusion for some reason that bodybuilding was what I was put on this earth to do.  To draw an analogy, bodybuilding is somewhat like being a priest, in that you have to have a calling of sorts if you are going to be a champion.  I used to wonder why anyone would want to become a priest, because it's such a total commitment.  But then serious bodybuilding is just as complete a commitment.  The two are very similar in that you have to throw yourself 100% into them.  To me, bodybuilding was definitely a calling."

In that same interview, when asked, "Who most influenced your development as a bodybuilder over the years?"

Tom Platz responded, "No doubt, it has been Joe Weider.  Without his magazines, constant encouragement and helpful coaching, I'd never have come along as fast as I have."

In part two of this interview(6) that appeared the following month in Muscle & Fitness, the interviewer began the article with:

"Rather than build Weider's Ark to escape the flood, we decided to conduct this in-depth interview."

In this interview Tom Platz is asked, "It's been said that a great deal about a person can be revealed from his reading material.  Other than bodybuilding magazines, what do you read?"

Platz answers, "Actually, the only magazine that I read from cover to cover and then save is Muscle & Fitness, and I probably have a couple of hundred issues of it and its predecessor, Muscle Builder, in my bodybuilding library."

In the July 1980 issue of Muscle & Fitness Tom Platz stated:

"I am turning people on to my religion.  I'm a bodybuilding priest in a sense."

I have personally attended a Tom Platz seminar (See a portion of my ticket stub).  In the 1980's, he was one of the few IFBB bodybuilders to openly discuss his use of drugs that he takes for his religion he calls bodybuilding.  His seminar was packed with anxious teenagers wanting to learn his secrets. I was one of them.


A Closer Look at Weider Article Headlines

Take a look at this contents page taken from the May 1989 issue of FLEX magazine. Under the section titled "FEATURES" notice where I have circled some of the titles.  This table of contents page almost reads like a church bulletin.


Now that you get the idea, let's take a look at some more article headlines. We have placed them in an image gallery. You will need to click on each one to enlarge for a better view.

Click on any image to see full size                Displaying 1 thru 4 of 4 Found.  
IMAGE ONE: 10 Commandments to Counting Calories
IMAGE ONE: 10 Commandments to Counting Calories

IMAGE TWO: The 10 False Commandments
IMAGE TWO: The 10 False Commandments

IMAGE THREE: Quad Almighty
IMAGE THREE: Quad Almighty

IMAGE FOUR: Biceps Bible
IMAGE FOUR: Biceps Bible

Displaying 1 thru 4 of 4 Found  

In image one above, you have the 10 Commandments to Counting Calories by Ms. Olympia, Cory Everson.

In image two above you, have The 10 False Commandments subtitled: Don't let them keep you out of bodybuilding's promised land.

In image three above, instead of God Almighty, you have Quad Almighty (notice that it reads: Ian Harrison takes leg training to a higher power).

In image four above, you have the Biceps Bible by Mr. Olympia, Larry Scott.

Joe Weider twists the Holy Scripture to suit his advertising needs for monetary gain in this ad(7)...


The Powder & The Glory.  Forever. This has been twisted from Matthew 6:13.  It is the last part of The Lord's Prayer.  From God's Holy Word this verse reads:

And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.

There is some irony in the fact that Weider not only changed this verse of scripture to suit his needs, but also left out the part of "lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil."

The Holy Bible warns:

   For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: 
   And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.
   -Revelation 22:18, 19 (KJV)

Examples of Scripture Found in the Weider Magazines

Over the years, the Weider magazines have been filled with biblical scripture. The readers of these magazines have definitely taken notice. 

One reader wrote the following comment and sent it in to Weider's magazine. Muscle & Fitness printed the comment in the reader "Feedback" section:

"Thank you for the inspiring quotes and biblical passages...(8)"

This Weider magazine reader had no idea that he was being led down the wrong path.

When dealing with cults, one must keep in mind that they are always built not upon what the Bible teaches but upon what the founders or leaders of the respective cults say the Bible teaches.(9)

Let's take a look at what Weider says the Bible teaches compared to what the Bible actually teaches. We will take them one at a time:

Weider's magazine says:(10)

"Seek and he shall find - within yourself."

Jesus says:

"Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you." -Matthew 7:7, 8 (KJV)

Weider's version would have you look to yourself for your needs. It's the New Age teachings of become your own God, pave your own path, and create your own world.  Just like Satan beguiled Eve in the Garden of Eden..."ye shall be as gods" (Genesis 3:5).

In contrast, Jesus wants us to turn to him and rely on him for all of our needs.

Weider's magazine says:(11)

 "Recall the Biblical parable of the wise and foolish men. Whose house withstood the fury of wind and storm?  The house built on the rock by the wiser of the two men.  So it is in bodybuilding.  You must begin with a solid foundation.

God's Word says:

   Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: 
   And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock. 
   And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand: 
   And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.
   - Matthew 7:24-27 (KJV)

You will recall from part one of this article, we relayed the story of how Joe and Ben Weider became the founding fathers of bodybuilding.  Remember the title used in the Weider magazine article?  The title was, "Upon This Rock."

The word "rock" in Matthew 16:18 is used figuratively to refer to Jesus Christ as the foundation of the church.

You Reap What You Sow

Let's take a look at one final example.  In an article titled: The Making Of A Bodybuilder written by Joe Weider(12), he says that, "The bodybuilder is a believer."

The article describes what makes a bodybuilder.  Using Scripture, Joe quotes Galatians 6:7 which reads:

"Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap."

Weider goes on to say:

"A bodybuilder sows an action of hard regular workouts, eating the most healthful foods, nourishing his body with supplements, getting optimal rest and reducing stress, creating a strong mind-muscle link and continually visualizing the ideal physique."

This is a good example of Weider giving you just enough Scripture to reel you in and make you think that you are on the right path. 

If Weider had included the entire passage of this Scripture, you would quickly realize that bodybuilding's foundation is built upon nothing but sand.

Here's the passage in its entirety:

Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. 
For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.
- Galatians 6:7,8 (KJV)

The bible constantly warns against false doctrine. Jesus said' "Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits."
- Matthew 7:15,16(a) (KJV)

   Notice the title of this article ? BERTIL FOX HAS BECOME A BELIEVER ? Joe?s need to control even the smallest of details is legendary.(13)

   Notice the cross that Bertil Fox is wearing in this photograph. There isn?t much that gets by without Joe?s personal seal of approval.(14)


1. Muscle & Fitness (May 1982), 3 Image of Joe Weider bust with "Strive for excellence" statement
2. Julian Blommaert, Ferrigno Prefers Weider Methods, Muscle Builder/Power (May 1975), 50
3. Muscle & Fitness (April 1982), 138, Ad: "It's the bodybuilders bible."
4. Muscle Builder/Power (May 1980), Ad: "The Weider System"
5. Bill Reynolds, Muscle & Fitness Interview: "TOM PLATZ: A muscular monument to hard training and positive thinking, Tom Platz is bound for bodybuilding glory." Muscle & Fitness (August 1982), 81 and 152
6. Bill Reynolds, Muscle & Fitness Interview: Part Two: "TOM PLATZ", Muscle & Fitness (September 1982), 60 and 62
7. Flex (May 1988), 8 Ad: "The Powder & The Glory."
8. Muscle & Fitness (August 1989), 13 "Feedback"
9. Norman L. Geisler and Ron Rhodes, When Cultists Ask: A popular handbook on cultic misinterpretations (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 1997) 18
10. Millard Bennett, "Inspiration: As You Think, So You Are" Muscle & Fitness (November 1981), 169
11. Frederick C. Hatfield, PhD, Director, the CRAFT Center, "VICTORY!" Muscle & Fitness (March 1989), 148
12. Joe Weider, " The Making Of A Bodybuilder: Do you have what it takes?", Muscle & Fitness (October 1995), 106
13. Rick Wayne, BERTIL FOX HAS BECOME A BELIEVER, Muscle & Fitness (January 1982), 34. Caption underneath photo are the spoken words of narrator Henry Ramer from The Weider Brothers: Men Of Iron documentary produced by Paradigm Pictures Corporation
14. Flex (Month and Year Unknown), 179 - Photo of Bertil Fox wearing a cross. Caption underneath photo are the spoken words of narrator Henry Ramer from The Weider Brothers: Men Of Iron documentary produced by Paradigm Pictures Corporation 

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