Theology FAIL: Know your heretics

19 October 2010 Leave a comment
Heretics of the modern era.

One of my main clarion calls to the church has been to pursue purity of doctrine. As you will find out from my own blog, one of my favourite series is Heresies in the church, which takes the doctrines of the Word-of-Faith crowd and compares it with the Scriptures.

Further, one of my favourite categories in my blogging is that of heresy, and what it is doing to the church. It is because of this that I feel that truth in the preaching of the gospel is so essential.

Christians fail to break away from false teaching only because they do not take the Bible seriously and because they ignore church history and its battles against the many heresies over the centuries. We all know what happens when we ignore history… We are simply doomed to repeat it!

Justin Holcomb has done a series of introductory articles on some of the heretics that the church encountered over the years in a series called Know Your Heretics. Heretics such as Marcion, Arius, Sabellus and Pelagius.

HT: Justin Taylor

Categories: Heresy, Theology

The state of the church and 3D pastors

Pastor Tony Morgan (right) next
to a holographic figure.

3D pastors. Who would’ve thought?

If the only job of a pastor was to preach, then perhaps this would be fine. However, a pastor must be a shepherd! That is the meaning of the word!

Holograms do not shepherd! In fact, technology is the death of the church! Why do I say this?

It has become way too easy for people to use only technology to make up their daily spiritual diet. Christians no longer come together as the people of God, because the over-use of technology has sent a message of total individualism to the church, making the local church a nuisance to our every day lives. Suddenly, we are more interested in what Tom, Dick and Harriet from across the big, blue pond have to say. Pastors have become irrelevant to modern Christians, because they can simply switch on the TV, or stream a video of a sermon via the internet, preached by a pastor that we will never get into contact with.

There is no longer a need to go to church. In fact, I was shocked speechless at a Biblical Worldview Seminar recently, when a married couple told me that they felt so good about themselves and their “freedom” in Christ since they decided to no longer attend church. They get all their spiritual “nutrition” via technology! I suppose that is why they are more concerned about fluoride in water and toothpastes, and aspartame in fizzy drinks than the people of God.

A church where shepherding, mentoring, true discipling is not practiced, is a failing church. Christianity is not about a sermon, although true preaching is at the heart of the church getting together. No, Christianity is about the gospel of Christ, and how it has changed us, and made a bunch of pagans into the one true people of God! How can we even claim to be the people of God if we do not want to gather with the people of God to worship and hear the preaching of God’s word. A true Christian will love the people of God. We cannot say we love God and not want to get together with the people God elected in His divine love!

The problem with modern technology in the church, is that much of it becomes a distraction. It makes attending church more like attending a movie! It becomes important that the entertaining factor is high all the time. The church is literally entertaining itself to death!

Technology in itself is not bad or evil. However, its use can have effects that we do not always think about when something new comes onto the market. Much of it is faddish, and it doesn’t help the preaching of God’s Word at all. It can distract, and “wow,” to the extent that the message of the gospel is lost in the bright lights, flashing images and loud noise.

Do we trust our preaching of the gospel so little, that we need to “wow” people in order to draw them? This is truly foolish! The Bible does not tell us that if we lift up technology that Christ will draw all kinds of people to Himself. We have to preach Christ, for it is the message of the gospel that will draw people. What did Paul write?

“For we are not ashamed of our technology, for the clever use of technology is the power of God for salvation to everyone who sees and hears our very entertaining techno messages.”

I bet you know that that is not what Paul wrote. Rather, he wrote:

“For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes…” (Rom 1:16)

We are to preach the gospel with clarity and not with distractions. For it is not entertainment that draws the ungodly, but God Himself! (Jn 6:44)

So, will holographic pastors add to the preaching of the gospel or distract from it? In the long run, what effects will this have on the church? What message do you preach subliminally when using your new technology?

In the end, it all hinges on how the technology affects the message of the gospel. Technology is not worth it, if it negatively affects the message of the gospel!

HT: Dan Phillips

A Grand Design. Huh!

Image courtesy
Global
Climate Scam

Stephen Hawking’s next book, The Grand Design, shot to number 1 on the NYT best sellers list. Does it deserve to be there? People will believe almost anything!

Here are some thoughts by Tim Challies and Trogdor.

Categories: Commentary, Creation

Did Spurgeon suggest that experience comes before knowledge after all?

30 September 2010 Leave a comment

Adrian WarnockAdrian Warnock, a Reformed Charismatic from England whom I greatly admire, makes the assertion in a blog post that Spurgeon “seems to suggest that experience may well need to come first before faith.” I am myself a Reformed Charismatic that also holds to New Covenant Theology, yet, I do not see how Adrian gets to this point.

He quotes several paragraphs from Spurgeon to make his point, however, I just do not get it! From the paragraphs quoted there, I do not see that Spurgeon says that experience comes before knowledge at all! What I do see is that Spurgeon said that both are necessary: knowledge and experience.

What do you think?

Categories: Salvation, Spurgeon, Theology

How to get apologetics in your church

30 September 2010 Leave a comment

Apologetics315 has started a series on how you can get apologetics in your church. So far they have done 15 sessions and is available on their blog here. It is also available as MP3s or you can subscribe to their podcast feed.

Categories: Apologetics, Audio, Church

Global Leadership Summit and the lack of theological discernment in the church

30 September 2010 Leave a comment
Bill Hybels

Willow Creek, headed by Bill Hybels, is one of the largest churches in America. One of its babies is the Global Leadership Summit (GLS) which has been running for several years. Many churches have jumped on this bandwagon of leadership and growing leadership and running leadership seminars and other leadership BLAH BLAH BLAH. Oh, sorry, I drifted off their for a second or two. Must be all this leadership talk!

The modern church is making so much of leadership and leadership principles that in my opinion, it is forgetting its primary mandate from none other than Jesus Christ Himself. In Mt 28:18-20 it is written:

“18 And Jesus came and said to them, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Go therefore and make leaders in your churches from all nations, certifying them as leaders in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all leadership principles that I have commanded you. And behold, I will put great leaders among you always, to the end of the age.'”


That is how it reads in the Leadership Principles Study Bible, available at all poor Christian bookstores near you!

But, this passage actually says:

“18 And Jesus came and said to them, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.'”

When the church becomes this concerned with making leaders, then it has lost the plot. The primary mandate for the church is to make disciples, and those disciples must make disciples, recursively.

Enough of this “leadership” talk!

T.D. Jakes

An alarming issue for me is the inclusion of T.D. Jakes. And this is where the theological discernment comes in! T.D. Jakes is a non-repentant, non-trinitarian. That means he does not believe in the Trinity of the Scriptures, hence putting himself outside of the fold of historic, Biblical Christianity. As a result, historically and Biblically, he would be known as a heretic! To find out more on what Jakes really believes you can go here, here and here. You can also read my blog series (first posted at Sovereign Truth) on the heresies of the Word-of-Faith preachers that have invaded the church so deeply.

The problem with all of these false teachers invading the church, is that the church has largely lost its ability to know and express a Biblical theological standpoint! The problem is that the gospel of Jesus Christ is not really that important any more!

When asked what is important, these people come up with all kinds of answers that do not really have any link back to the gospel! Things like being relevant, leadership and all kinds of worldly fads. I listened to a sermon by David Wells a while ago in which he said that when the church starts following a fad, that fad is no longer cool!

The church has essentially lost its foundation when it started adding all kinds of other ideas to the gospel and eventually lost much of the gospel. It is for this reason that preachers such as T.D. Jakes, Kenneth Copeland, Joyce Meyer and others have so easily invaded churches with their books and videos. The “essentials of the gospel” have become non-essential!

Due to this lack of theoscernment, many evangelicals have become evanjellycals.

We simply cannot allow these wolves in sheep’s clothing to further bring doctrines of death to our churches! Just because someone claims the name of Christ, does not mean that Christ has claimed that person. Christianity is a propositional faith. It makes some truth claims, and some of those truth claims are clearly doctrinal, and without them, your faith is no longer the Christian faith. It is on this basis that we can say that Jehovah’s Witnesses and Mormons are not Christian. It is, based on these accepted essential doctrines, that we can say that the WOF preachers and men like T.D. Jakes stand outside of the true Christian fold.

The question is, however, will pastors stand on the truth of the gospel, or on expediency, driven by the urge to be relevant in an age of intolerance.

Zondervan Academic’s Africa Bible Commentary giveaway

29 September 2010 Leave a comment

Zondervan is giving away two of their Africa Bible Commentary Series commentaries: Galatians and 1 & 2 Timothy and Titus.

To participate in the giveaway, go here!

Categories: Books, Commentary, Giveaway