Tuesday, March 31, 2009
Rick Warren's Top Eight Reasons To Join His "Church": Loving Christ Jesus and Obeying HIM Didn't Make the List
Quote (caps original, bold is mine):
Dear Saddleback Family,
I'm not sleeping much. I'm too excited.
THIS SATURDAY, March 28, will be THE GREATEST DAY in Saddleback's history.
OVER 2,000 people have already signed up to become members of our church family on a single day! They're joining me for:
BREAKFAST, BAPTISM & CLASS 101 WITH PASTOR RICK THIS SATURDAY AT 8:30 AM TO NOON IN THE WORSHIP CENTER.
SIGN UP TODAY!
Two thousand years ago - the Day of Pentecost was the first day of the Christian Church. Acts 2:41 tells us, "About 3,000 people were baptized and joined the church that day." If you'll join us this weekend, history could be repeated at Saddleback! Want to make history?
Which of these requirements do you need to complete this Saturday?
1. Open your heart to Jesus Christ. Click here to learn more.
2. Attend Class 101: Discovering Your Church Family. Sign up.
3. Sign our membership covenant (explained in class).
4. Be baptized the way Jesus commanded and modeled for us.
(Many of us were baptized as kids on our parent's faith. Jesus modeled believer's baptism at age 30 when he was baptized in the Jordan River) It would be my privilege to baptize you after Class 101.
YOU CAN FINISH ALL 4 REQUIREMENTS IN ONE DAY - THIS SATURDAY!
EIGHT REASONS TO JOIN THIS SATURDAY & NOT PROCRASTINATE:
1. I'm personally teaching Class 101 for the first time in ten years.
2. I'm personally baptizing after Class and you'll receive a photo & baptism certificate.
3. You'll get a free one year subscription to Purpose Driven Connection magazine. (Never offered before)
4. You'll get free copy of The Purpose Driven Church book.
5. Your name will be included in the historical list of Saddleback Pioneer Members who joined in our first 30 years. (This Easter is our 30th Easter and I want you included in this list.)
6. The class is 1 hour shorter than normal. You can watch session 3 here online now.
7. You'll be a part of making Christian history! The largest membership class ever!
8. We love you & want you in our family. There is no good reason to procrastinate.
I was asked, "Rick, If you could wish for anything to celebrate your 30 years of service at Saddleback, what would you dream of?" I said, "To experience a repeat of Pentecost - and see 3,000 people affirm their faith and join our church family on a single day." Will you be a part of making this a reality?
Just do 2 things:
1. Sign up for this Saturday by clicking here.
2. Watch the session 3 video!
This is going to be fun. You're the greatest. See you Saturday!
Fun? Really. Well, I don't think God declares spiritual things to be FUN. Look what happened in Acts 5. Besides, Acts 2 also doesn't talk about FUN. Rather we see a disturbance because the Holy Spirit was powerfully present, convicting people of their sin as Peter put the blame of the death of Jesus on their heads, which struck them at the heart. No FUN there.
Anything about pleasing the Lord Jesus Christ? Anything about loving the soul of God-haters? NOPE.
Warren defenders need to wake up and smell the java: this man is ONLY IN IT FOR HIMSELF.
What audacity to think he can repeat what the Lord did in a historical event in Acts 2.
What pride to think that getting taught, baptized, and photographed with him are the top reasons to become members! Do you see what Warren is doing? He's saying following him is enticing enough for people to become members of his organization. He clearly thinks TOO HIGHLY OF HIMSELF to think that HE is the big draw. He violates Scripture and proves himself yet again (for anyone who doubted) that he is unqualified to be an elder:
Gal 6:3 For if anyone thinks he is something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself.
Php 2:3 Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.
He doesn't speak about being obedient to Christ out of love for HIM. Its about being linked to a pompous man so he can yet again, claim numbers. Isn't it interesting that Scripture never worries about the numbers of anything. In fact, the Remnant by definition will be smaller than the rest, after all, Jesus sais that the road to eternal life is NARROW and FEW that find it.
One more thing. We have an example of how God grew HIS church in Jerusalem, and purity and fear were part of it:
Act 5:1 But a man named Ananias, with his wife Sapphira, sold a piece of property, 2 and with his wife's knowledge he kept back for himself some of the proceeds and brought only a part of it and laid it at the apostles' feet. 3 But Peter said, "Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and to keep back for yourself part of the proceeds of the land?
God then struck both Ananias and Sapphira dead inside the church itself. Here's what followed:
Act 5:12 Now many signs and wonders were regularly done among the people by the hands of the apostles. And they were all together in Solomon's Portico. 13 None of the rest dared join them, but the people held them in high esteem. 14 And more than ever believers were added to the Lord, multitudes of both men and women,
God grew His church HIS way. God demands purity in private and public; personally and corporately. And God demands that we fear HIM.
Rick Warren promotes NONE OF THIS. Absolutely NONE. In fact, Warren goes against Scripture and is only interested in inflating his ego.
But pride goes before the fall.
As noted by another, Saddleback out-did God's Pentecost as described in Acts 2, a few Easters ago (on their 25th Anniversary) by adding 4,000 people to their group--and his message? Was it about Jesus Christ and HIM crucified? NOPE. Allow me to quote Saddleback: "Pastor Rick focused his Easter sermon on what has become his life message: The Purpose Driven Life."
God's churches are for believer's only, not God-haters who want to play religion. That is why Scripture commands believers to be in a local assembly and for there to be church discipline. 2Cor. 6 calls believers OUT of the world, to be separate from it. It says that there is NO FELLOWSHIP between unbelievers and believers! No common ground is there. Yet Warren denies this; he is PROUD to recount the way he went around his neighborhood to make a temple that was pleasing to the enemies of God. In fact Warren boasts that his first member was an unbelieving real estate agent he met when he first came out to California.
Rick Warren is a sham, a fraud, and a false teacher. He is pleased ONLY in bloating his ego. He WILL have pre-eminence over Christ Jesus, as demonstrated at his website for his country club membership.
May God deal with him justly.
Saturday, March 28, 2009
The chief of the Missouri highway patrol is blasting a report issued by the Missouri Information Analysis Center that linked conservative groups to domestic terrorism, assuring that such reports no longer will be issued.
The report warned law enforcement agencies to watch for suspicious individuals who may have bumper stickers for third-party political candidates such as Ron Paul, Bob Barr and Chuck Baldwin.
It further warned law enforcement to watch out for individuals with "radical" ideologies based on Christian views, such as opposing illegal immigration, abortion and federal taxes.
Chief James Keathley of the Missouri State Patrol issued a statement that the release of the report, which outraged conservatives nationwide, prompted him to "take a hard look" at the procedures through which the report was released by the MIAC.
The report simply "does not meet" the needed standard for "intelligence," he said.
The Missouri document, it said, "attempted to politicize police and cast suspicion on millions of Americans. The 'Missouri Documents,' as they came to be called, listed over 32 characteristics police should watch for as signs or links to domestic terrorists, which could threaten police officers, court officials, and infrastructure targets.
"Police were instructed to look for Americans who were concerned about unemployment, taxes, illegal immigration, gangs, border security, abortion, high costs of living, gun restrictions, FEMA, the IRS, The Federal Reserve ,and the North American Union/SPP/North American Community. The 'Missouri Documents' also said potential domestic terrorists might like gun shows, short wave radios, combat movies, movies with white male heroes, Tom Clancey Novels, and Presidential Candidates Ron Paul, Bob Barr, and Chuck Baldwin!" ALIPAC wrote.
It said the report cited the Southern Poverty Law Center as a resource.
So much for freedom of beliefs! This is insanity. White male heroes? Books? Oh so now its bad to read Clancey books, which by the way, are full of intellegent thoughts and vocabulary. Perhaps these flamming libs over at the MIAC wants everyone to read Tolle's New Age idiocy or Twighlight vampire junk? Is that their standard for acceptable books to read? HELLO? Can you say Communism?
Ironically what these people are saying is that liberals are FOR: illegal immigration, abortion,unemployment, taxes, illegal immigration, gangs, border [in]security, high costs of living, gun restrictions, FEMA, the IRS, The Federal Reserve ,and the North American Union/SPP/North American Community,and anything else that is big government socialism.
And here I thought we lived in America. Its an absolute tragedy to see how liberalism is bringing in socialism by threat and eventually by force.
Chief Keathley will put in new oversight instructions, bla bla bla bla. But what isn't said, is why these "characteristics" were targeted to begin with! Clearly people at the Missouri Information Analysis Center have an axe to grind with NORMAL Americans, because these "informational analysis" people are liberal themselves. So much for objectivity.
While Keathley will quite this down, the problem still remains: the people who put the report together, their characteristics THEY deem as "dangerous", the significance they put into these things, and the bias of those very people. Oversight isn't the problem: liberal agenda IS.
And it won't go away. This is nothing more than liberal incrementism. The Left can't STAND to have anyone go against their ideology. They ARE the most intolerant hypocrits around.
Friday, March 27, 2009
Montana Plane Crash: Survivor Irving "Bud" Feldkamp Who Lost His Family Turns Out To Be An Abortionist Clinic Owner
Butte, MT (LifeNews.com) -- The crash of a small airplane in Montana carrying a family from California after a ski trip has made the national news, but the mainstream media hasn't yet connected the dots. Were they to dig a little deeper, they would learn that the family killed in the crash has an infamous abortion connection.
The crash involved two daughters of a prominent California abortion business owner, Irving "Bud" Feldkamp, and their families.
Feldkamp owns the Family Planning Associates abortion business he purchased four years ago, but the mainstream media is only mentioning his ownership of a dental practice and that he is the CEO of Glen Helen Raceway Park in San Bernardino.
That is despite the fact that his 17 FPA abortion centers do more abortions in the state of California than Planned Parenthood, the nation's largest abortion business.
Their plane went down on Sunday killing daughters Vanessa and Amy, two of Feldkamp's sons-in-law, five grandchildren, the pilot and four family friends.
For pro-life advocates who are familiar with Feldkamp's exploits as an abortion business owner, the crash is sad news but it carries a certain irony.
The plane crashed into Catholic Holy Cross cemetery near the Butte airport and burst into flames. The site of the devastating impact and the deaths of the 14 passengers was near a memorial erected in the cemetery to honor unborn children who have died in abortions.
The memorial, called the Tomb of the Unborn, was erected as a dedication to all babies who have died because of abortion.
Gingi Edmonds, a young pro-life activist, noticed the connection and the irony associated with Feldkamp and the site of the plane crash.
"Although Feldkamp is not an abortionist, he reaps profits of blood money from the tens of thousands of babies that are killed through abortions performed every year at the clinics he owns," she says.
His business in the abortion industry was what enabled him to afford the private plane that was carrying his family to their week-long vacation," Edmonds adds.
Edmonds, who spent time with the pro-life group Survivors of the Abortion Holocaust, helped organize and conduct a weekly campaign where youth activists stood outside of Feldkamp's mini-mansion in Redlands holding fetal development signs and raising community awareness regarding Feldkamp's abortion business ownership.
"Every Thursday afternoon we called upon Bud and his wife Pam to repent, seek God's blessing and separate themselves from the practice of child killing," she said.
"Pam Feldkamp laughing at the fetal development signs, Bud Feldkamp trying not to make eye contact as he got into his car with a small child in tow" -- those are what she recalls.
God sees the wicked. He is still the same God of the OT as He is in the NT. May this wicked man come to repent for ALL his sins against the Holy God of the universe.
Pro 15:3 The eyes of the LORD are in every place, keeping watch on the evil and the good.
Mal 3:6 For I the LORD do not change
Heb 13:8 Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.
Here the words of God:
Psa 10:3 For the wicked boasts of the desires of his soul, and the one greedy for gain curses and renounces the LORD.
Psa 10:4 In the pride of his face the wicked does not seek him; all his thoughts are, "There is no God."
Psa 10:5 His ways prosper at all times; your judgments are on high, out of his sight; as for all his foes, he puffs at them.
Psa 10:6 He says in his heart, "I shall not be moved; throughout all generations I shall not meet adversity."
Psa 10:7 His mouth is filled with cursing and deceit and oppression; under his tongue are mischief and iniquity.
Psa 10:10 The helpless are crushed, sink down, and fall by his might.
Psa 10:11 He says in his heart, "God has forgotten, he has hidden his face, he will never see it."
Psa 10:12 Arise, O LORD; O God, lift up your hand; forget not the afflicted.
Psa 10:13 Why does the wicked renounce God and say in his heart, "You will not call to account"?
Psa 10:14 But you do see, for you note mischief and vexation, that you may take it into your hands; to you the helpless commits himself; you have been the helper of the fatherless.
Psa 10:15 Break the arm of the wicked and evildoer; call his wickedness to account till you find none.
Psa 10:16 The LORD is king forever and ever; the nations perish from his land.
Psa 10:17 O LORD, you hear the desire of the afflicted; you will strengthen their heart; you will incline your ear
Psa 10:18 to do justice to the fatherless and the oppressed, so that man who is of the earth may strike terror no more.
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
More from Daniel Hannan himself and how he was blacked out by the media...but Youtube gave his great three minute speech exposure (to the dismay of many of the media) and it seems he's struck a cord with thousands of people. He has many other speeches up on Youtube--apparently he's been sounding the alarm for months over there.
Saturday, March 21, 2009
Luk 6:26 “Woe to you, when all people speak well of you, for so their fathers did to the false prophets.
Time Magazine is applauding Calvinism, Piper, Driscoll, and Mohler. Shouldn't that be a red flag? This the article that shows my concern.
I don't think its appropriate to gloat and giggle over the article. Perhaps folks might consider these things first:
If Arminianism is wrong and unbiblical,why are Reformers combining Reformed theology with Arminianism? Eastern mysticism, Post-Modernism /Emergent Church Movement,seeker-friendly, foul language, x-rated "Christian" website links, denial of the inspiration of Scripture, Roman Catholicism, are all man-centered. Where is the unity between Christ-centeredness (which Reformers claim) and man-centeredness 2Cor. 6:14-18)?
I do not understand how people who say all the time that a dead man can't hear and do a thing to get saved are the SAME ones who think a dead church could be merely reformed. The doctrine of Total Depravity would necessitate the rejection of "need" for the Reformation because a dead church can't be reformed just as dead men can't be reformed.
Calvinism is more than just TULIP: At Kim Riddlebarger's blog, Richard Muller who is author of several books on Calvin, Calvinism and Arminus, etc he states at the end of his article "How Many Points", published in the "Calvin Theological Journal" makes my point:
WITHOUT THE CONCEPT of the church as covenanting community and THE DOCTRINE OF INFANT BAPTISM, THE FIVE POINTS MAKES LITTLE SENSE.
Our confession of the divine foundation of the covenanting community also directs our attention from the doctrine of the efficacy and irresistibility of grace to the conception of SACRAMENTS AS MEANS OF GRACE AND NOT MERE ORDINANCES.
In conclusion, we can ask again, "HOW MANY POINTS?" SURELY THERE ARE MORE THAN FIVE. The Reformed faith includes reference to total inability, unconditional election, limited efficiency of Christ's satisfaction, irresistible grace, and perseverance of the saints, NOT AS THE SUM TOTAL of the church's confession but as ELEMENTS THAT CAN BE ONLY UNDERSTOOD in the context of a larger body of teaching INCLUDING THE BAPTISM OF INFANTS, justification by grace alone through faith, the necessity of a thankful obedience consequent upon our faith and justification, the IDENTIFICATION OF SACRAMENTS AS MEANS OF GRACE, the so-called AMILLENNIAL VIEW of the end of the world. The larger number of points, including but going beyond the five of Dort, is intended, in other words, to construe theologically the entire life of the believing community. And WHEN THAT LARGER NUMBER OF POINTS taught by the REFORMED CONFESSIONS IS NOT RESPECTED, the FAMOUS FIVE ARE JEOPARDIZED, indeed, DISSOLVED —and the ongoing spiritual health of the church is placed at risk.
This isn't biblical. Infant sprinkling is found nowhere in all of Scripture; only Believer's Baptism. Confessions and Creeds of the Reformation are not declared to be authoritative in Scripture either; only God's Word---not men's. God's church is local and its made up of believers, the ecclesia ---those who are saved and assemble together for the teaching of God's Word--- the Lord's Table, corporate worship, and ministry of gifts, and church discipline as well as baptisms of new believers.
Regarding Mark Driscoll: not only does has a filthy mouth, not only is he proud of it, not only does he link to x-rated "Christian" sex website, but the way he discusses Jesus Christ is utterly dispicable. It is not surprising then, why Time magazine would applaud him as acceptable.
See Steve Camp on Mark Driscoll and more.
See Slice of Laodicea here for Driscoll's x-rated website link:
For example, (in Erick Raymond's review of Driscoll's "Vintage Jesus" book), in his run through "The Gospel According to Mark", describes Jesus as a guy who,“[tells] a leper to shut-up”,”,“needs Paxil”,“needs sensitivity training”,"[Is] an obvious workaholic who needed to start drinking decaf and listening to taped sounds of running water while doing aromatherapy so he could learn to relax.” How blasphemous indeed! Where is Driscoll's fear of the Almighty? Where is his trembling? Where is his respect of the things of God? People like him cause the world to no longer call Christians "God-fearing men" simply because they have no fear of God!
Yet this is whom John Piper endorses and defends for repeatedly sharing the pulpit with him.
Paul Tripp thinks using foul language is merely cultural, and gleefully uses the "s" word and laughs when his kids learn to use it too. Go here for his "s" word use in a promo video for the "Power of Words" Desiring God conference. How is it that Phil Johnson and John MacArthur can know and BOLDLY proclaim what is appropriate for speech especially for pastors and teachers and yet their friend John Piper, a pastor and supposedly mature Christian of 30 years, does not? How totally polar opposites The Shepherd's Conference was from Desiring God's Conference a few months ago!
Is it any wonder that the God-hating Time Magazine applauds Driscoll and Piper and their Calvinism? Scripture says men hate His truth, they will not agree with it nor do they find it good. Rather they find all things of God as foolishness (1Cor. 2:14). So when the world pats a person on the back, that should be a red flag. It means they find you unoffensive, which means you aren't standing for Truth as Jesus did.
How did God deal with the shepherds of Israel? Did He wink at their sin and excused it as being merely "immature"? Or did He condemn them and pronounce judgment upon them? See Jer. 6:13-15; 7:4-24).
Consider this too:
The continuing list of what a Reformer can hold to as optional yet find "unity" by "holding to" the TULIP and Creed and Confessions:
Feminism: women can be pastors and leaders over men in church (see the RTS Orlando pushing Synergy feminist conference). Reformed Theological Seminary (Orlando) and evangelical feminism…
Emergent Church Movement junk
Jesus' physical return
Our physical resurrection
Satan as our current enemy
Justification by faith alone
Adam is literal
Fruit of the Spirit
Creation in literal 6 days
Impeccability of Christ
Lordship of Christ
Not using freedoms in Christ to cover evil; causing a brother to stumble
Not Getting Drunk
Gospel includes the resurrection of Jesus
Literal hell/ hold to Annihilationism
The Narrow Road excludes many people (the Broad Road) (aka no Universalism)
Sufficiency of Scripture
Philosophy - hold to it
No truth in error
Inspiration of Scripture
Perseverance / Preservation of the Saints by God alone
Rejection of heretics
Rejection of Roman Catholicism
Perpescuity of Scripture and its doctrines
This leads me to ask, what makes anyone a Christian? Because they SAY they are?
This POMO age has created "Christians" that not only do not know biblical doctrine, they don't live by it nor do they think its clear. Instead it has trained "Christians" to think ignorance as a virtue rather than a vice. That riding the fence is GOOD rather than BAD. I'm sorry people, but when a PROFESSOR at a SEMINARY doesn't know that God created the universe in six LITERAL Days, its time for him to pack up, go home, study Scripture ALONE, and sit under biblical teaching in a biblical church.
Truth IS knowable. Jesus said it is. Do you really believe HIM?
What I can't understand is that when a "Christian" teacher/preacher blathers on with grotesque language, contrary to Ephes. 4, that's lauded as relevant or passed off as "immaturity". However, when pointing out the gross error and unacceptable according to Scripture, people like me are written off as "judgmental" and "unloving". I see hypocrisy written all over this.
In criticizing Driscoll, one PCA pastor cussed me out and then said "now, I have to go finish my sermon for tomorrow". Yeah, THAT'S honoring to the Lord. But it makes my point that there is such a thing as "touching the seminary anointed and doing Reformed prophets no harm." There IS a magisterium mentality there. There is the sin of favoritism (see James 2There is rubber stamping of all who mouth "TULIP" or "Reformed"even if they reject the ONLY Gospel that can save! How dare such people look down their noses as Arminians when they are just as man-centered---and so full of arrogance.
If we hold to biblical doctrine it will have an affect on our whole lives. If we are reflecting more of the world than Him, we should examine ourselves to see if we are in the faith. Remember 1John 1-2 as well as Titus 1 and 1Tim. 3 for the requirements of elders.
I say these things as a person who holds to the Doctrines of Grace and God's absolute sovereignty in all things. But I do not call myself a Calvinist nor Reformed because of the teachings that are within it. I don't mean to be disrespectful at all, but I have major concerns regarding who and what is being hailed as wonderful, if you see what I mean.
Mat 5:10 “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11 “Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. 12 Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
Is this happening with Driscoll or Piper? Or are they gaining a wider audience? Something to consider.
I don't find it a compliment that Time Magazine lauds Calvinism, Piper, Driscoll, or Mohler. If I found my name on that list, I'd worry, that's for sure!
Friday, March 20, 2009
Excerpts from A.W. Pink on "Love Reproving"
Some time ago we received the following inquiry from one of our readers, "Do you think it possible to be too critical of Christians (?) nowadays? The reason I put a question mark after 'Christians' was because I wondered if some of them really are born again of the Spirit. We cannot always tell, can we? Are we not, at all events, to speak the Truth in love? This is a very practical question with us just now."
First, let us turn the light of Holy Writ upon this matter, "Do not hate your brother in your heart. Rebuke your neighbor frankly—so you will not share in his guilt" (Lev 19:17). There are three things which call for our prayerful response
First, this is a plain precept bidding us to rebuke an erring brother—it is not optional but obligatory; this duty must not be omitted under any pretense. God requires His people to uphold the demands of righteousness. He will not wink at sin—nor must they.
Second, God would also correct our innate self-centeredness. We are so occupied with our own well-being as to be in danger of neglecting the good of our neighbor. This verse plainly denotes it is a lack of love for others—if we see them commit sin with indifference, and make no effort to bring them to repentance and forsake their evil course. A mild, plain, and seasonable reproof is the best way of expressing our solicitude for an erring brother, though it is distasteful to us and unwelcome to him.
Third,"So you will not share in his guilt" means that you become not an accessory of the act. Silence gives consent—if I don't rebuke him—I condone evil and share the guilt.
Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God—and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God" (1 John 4:7). Christian love is not a thing of nature—but is entirely supernatural. It is not a part of our "personality" or anything which issues from our "disposition," but is a Divine communication received at the new birth. It is neither a sentiment nor an emotion—but a holy principle which is spiritual in its origin, its nature, its characteristics, and its manifestations.
But alas, many of God's own children are today so ill-taught, so ignorant, and so carnal—that they are unable to recognize true Christian love when they see it in exercise. Their thinking is so much colored by the world, they are so much corrupted by mingling with hollow professors—that they mistake pleasant personality and cordiality—for spiritual love. They forget that some who make no profession at all, are naturally congenial, kind, warm-hearted, courteous, and sympathetic. Christian love is neither the milk of human kindness—nor creature congeniality. Much that passes for Christian love—is merely the amiability and affability of the flesh!
How are we to know when we truly "love one another"? When we feel our hearts drawn out to them because of their affableness, their charming demeanor, their "sweet" ways? No! for appearances are deceptive. A winsome smile, a hearty hand-shake, a kiss—is no sign of the new nature—as Judas' kissing of Christ demonstrated. Nor does a polite demeanor or honeyed-mouth expressions prove anything to the point—rather does the Christian need to be doubly on his guard in the company of those who flatter him—ponder Proverbs 20:19; 26:28; Psalm 12:3.
Then how are we to know when we "love one another" —and when they love us? When we truly seek their highest good—when we aim at their spiritual well-being. The one who evidences the most spiritual love for me—is he who is ever seeking to promote my eternal interests—by wise counsels, by beneficial warnings, by timely rebukes, by godly encouragements.
And if I am spiritual—I shall love others for their piety, heavenly-mindedness, and faithfulness.
Alas, what a low plane even the people of God are now living upon. Many of them are so easily ruffled—that with the least criticism of them—they are "hurt," and offended; which shows they have more self-love than the love of God in them.
"This is how we know that we love the children of God: by loving God and carrying out his commands" (1 John 5:2). Go back to the previous verse for the connection, "Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and everyone who loves the father loves his child as well." We love the brethren, because they have been made "partakers of the Divine nature" —it is that, and nothing pertaining to the old creation, which is the uniting bond. How that lifts us entirely out of the realm of nature, into the spiritual sphere! It is love for God—which produces love for those who bear His image. And what is the touch-stone of my love to God? Not rapturous feelings, nor beautiful words of devotion, nor heartily singing His praises—but by keeping His commandments —John 14:15, 21, 24; 15:10. The strength of my love for God—is to be gauged by the measure of my obedience to His Word. The same principle holds good in my relations with the brethren—love to them will be manifested by efforts to encourage them in the path of obedience—and that necessarily involves rebuking them for disobedience.
To come more immediately to the opening questions. "Is it possible to be too critical of Christians (?) nowadays?" Why the qualifying "nowadays"? Has God lowered His standard—to meet these evil times? Is it permissible or expedient for me to compromise because the present generation is so lax and carnal? Do not the days in which our lot is cast, call for a clearer drawing of the line between the Church and the world? If so, should not this help to determine my conduct toward the individual?
We are mindful that large numbers hold the view that God requires less from people in degenerate times—but we know of nothing in His Word which supports them. Rather are such days the very time when the Christian most needs to show his colors, when shallowness and hollowness marks the religious profession all around, there is greater urgency for us to make manifest the reality that we are "strangers and pilgrims" in this scene. The Scriptures are just as much the Rule—and the sole rule for us to walk by—as they were for our more godly forebears. In the Day to come, we shall be judged by them as truly as they will be. It is never right to do wrong—nor to condone wrong.
John, the apostle of love, began his third epistle with these words, "The elder unto the well-beloved Gaius, whom I love in the Truth." What a needed word is this for today, when so much that passes for love, even in avowedly Christian circles, is nothing but a sickly sentimentality at the expense of the Truth. One of the outstanding cries in the religious world, is to this effect— "though we have differed in our beliefs and practices, let us now sink our differences and come together in love." When I was the pastor of a church in Sydney, I was regarded as a narrow-minded bigot, because on what Rome calls "good Friday" I refused to take part in an "ecumenical Communion service," where Fundamentalists, Liberals, Unitarians, and Evolutionists were invited to gather together, and thereby express "brotherly love" for one another. What a travesty and mockery! The wisdom which is from above is "first pure, then peaceable" (James 3:17). The more I am walking in the Truth and the more my brother is doing the same—the more cause have we to love one another.
It may be helpful to answer the opening question by changing the form of it—Is it possible to be too critical of myself? May I permit myself a certain amount of indulgence, exclude some part of my life from the control of God, be less strict about some matter than others?...Am I not required to love my neighbor as myself? And am I doing so—if I gloss over something in him which I know to be against his or her spiritual interests and can only work ill for him? If it is my plain duty to warn him against physical evils—then on what ground am I justified in being silent when I see spiritual danger menacing him?
But let it be pointed out, that I certainly am not warranted in being "critical" about the conduct of others, unless I am accustomed to unsparingly judge myself. It is the very worst species of hypocrisy to point the finger of condemnation at another, while I am guilty of something equally as bad.
If pride and haughtiness are to be reprehended; then mock humility or even an undue occupation with our own frailty and faultiness, is not to be commended. If we must wait until we are blameless, then there are many precepts of Scripture we cannot act upon. If we must tarry until our own character and conduct be faultless, then we are disqualified from rebuking anybody. We greatly fear that many have created their own difficulty or deterrent through a wrongful appropriation of those words "he who is without sin—let him first cast a stone" (John 8:7). How often have we heard professing Christians say, when it had become their manifest duty to admonish another, "Who am I—to cast stones at others?" It should be remembered, that John 8:7 was not spoken to conscientious saints, jealous of the honor of the Lord, anxious to promote the good of others—but to hypocritical pharisees, who were deliberately seeking to ensnare Christ.
Hence the force of "bearing with one another in love" (Eph 4:2); yet that must not be twisted into "winking at one another's faults" or condoning sin—under the pretense of love.
No, we cannot "always tell" whether a professing Christian is a regenerate or unregenerate person, and therefore it behooves us to be cautious and conservative, lest we be guilty of giving that which is holy—unto dogs (Matt 7:6). It is a very serious and solemn matter to encourage a deluded soul in his deception, as we do when we lead him to believe that we regard him as a Christian. But how is this to be avoided? By a withholding the tokens of fellowship; for example, refusing to address as "Brother" or "Sister" —from all whom we stand in doubt of, especially from those whose walk is manifestly worldly and contrary to the precepts of Scripture. While we cannot read the hearts of those we mix with—we can test their outward life by the Word, and if its general tenor is opposed to the requirements of holiness, and is contrary to the example of Christ—we certainly are not warranted in regarding them as children of God.
Certainly we should be "loving" in rebuking sin. It is in love, that God chastens His people, that they "might be partakers of His holiness" (Heb 12:6,10). We are bidden to "speak the Truth in love," and Christ was doing so—as truly when denouncing the pharisees in Matthew 23—as when He was comforting His disciples in John 14. But does that mean that His countenance, the tone of His voice, or His general bearing was the same? He ever spoke the Truth in love—but if some would re-read the four Gospels with this particular thought in mind—it might cause them to revise, or at least modify their present conception of what "speaking the truth in love" really is. Something depends upon the particular fault committed. Mole-hills are not to be magnified into mountains. There are times when it is fitting to rebuke "sharply" (Titus 1:13), as Christ did in Luke 24:25. But for the most part, it should be done in "the spirit of meekness" (Gal 6:1). There is a happy medium between harshness and firmness, as there is between sentimentality and tenderness.
And yet today, if the truth be told, the vast majority of evangelical preaching
has far more in common with the philosophic psycho-babble of Robert Schuller than it does with the God-honoring Bible exposition of Charles Spurgeon. Doesn’t anyone see the incredible downhill slide we are currently experiencing in this radidly accelerating apostasy?
If Spurgeon were still here he would most certainly call it the “New Downgrade.” How much longer must the Church militant kowtow before self-righteous and self-centered sinners, literally begging them to ”accept” the glorious and majestic LORD God Almighty! The truth is, if they do not repent, they will not avoid an unalterable eternity of conscious torment in a literal place Christ Jesus called Hell.
Years ago the aforementioned Leonard Ravenhill asked the crucial question in his book Why Revival Tarries — “Where are the Elijah’s of God?” O yes, dear Lord, where are these watchmen? Please, send us the watchmen! But, you know, God has sent them before. For example, A.W. Tozer sounded an alarm; and one that the Church had best begin to heed, right now, before it’s too late:
"Many tender-minded Christians fear to sin against love by daring to inquire into anything that comes wearing the cloak of Christianity and breathing the name of Jesus. They dare not examine the credentials of the latest prophet to hit their town lest they be guilty of rejecting something which may be of God… This is supposed to indicate a high degree of spirituality. But in sober fact it indicates no such thing. It may indeed be evidence of the absence of the Holy Spirit.
Gullibility is not synonymous with spirituality. Faith is not a mental habit leading its possessor to open his mouth and swallow everything that has about it the color of the supernatural. Faith keeps its heart open to whatever is of God, and rejects everything that is not of God, however wonderful it may be.
“Try the spirits” is a command of the Holy Spirit to the Church (1 John 4:1). We may sin as certainly by approving the spurious as by rejecting the genuine… To appraise things with a heart of love and then to act on the results is an obligation resting upon every Christian in the world (Tozer On The Holy Spirit, August 3)."
Indeed I see this very fear, this man-centeredness in professing Christians who dare not question their favorite author, pastor, conference speaker, singer, or professor. There is so much rubber stamping today on anyone who mouths the words "Jesus is Lord" or even "TULIP", but who's mouth is foul, doctrine is unbiblical, and look for man's applause.
Scripture is clear that when ANYONE comes with another gospel, like Baptismal Regeneration, such PERSONS are anathema (Gal. 1:7-9). It is not a matter of opinion. Its not a matter of ignoring the error and 'holding on to the good'. There IS no good in error. There is no good in a false gospel. So if a person claims a certain "theology" their error is excused or ignored? Gal. 1 is somehow not applied to their favorite theologian or character in history? Since when is that biblical? Surely this is the sin of favoritism that God hates.
I daresay today's "Christian" is too afraid and unable to truly stand for truth. They rather join the mob than be an Elijah or an Isaiah. They find comfort in the company of numbers. How utterly disloyal to Christ Jesus. He, after all, had no numbers on His side, no popularity, didn't teach tolerance of evil or "just agree to disagree" with the religious elite of the day. He didn't compromise, but was loyal to the Father and His Word. He was bold. Those who claim Him are nothing like Him. They don't even aspire to be like Him.
Gal 1:6 I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel--
Gal 1:7 not that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ.
Gal 1:8 But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed.
Gal 1:9 As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed.
Gal 1:10 For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.
Gal 1:11 For I would have you know, brothers, that the gospel that was preached by me is not man's gospel.
Jas 2:9 But if you show partiality, you are committing sin and are convicted by the law as transgressors.
Gal 4:16 Have I then become your enemy by telling you the truth? 17 They make much of you, but for no good purpose. They want to shut you out, that you may make much of them.
I will quote A.W. Pink from a previous post, because its worth repeating:
Few words have been used more inaccurately and loosely in recent years, than has "love." With a great many people--it is but a synonym for moral laxity, weakness of character, a taking the line of least resistance, a quiet tolerating of what is felt to be wrong.
This same evil has held sway in the churches. Leniency and weakness have overridden righteousness and faithfulness. Instead of maintaining and enforcing the discipline which God's Word enjoins--the great majority of the churches have winked at even glaring sins, refusing to deal with those who walk disorderly. This reprehensible laxity, is misnamed "love". A mushy sentimentality which shrank from "hurting the feelings" of others--has ousted all concern for the glory of Christ and the honor of His house.
This is one of the inevitable effects of the lopsided preaching of the
pulpit, where the 'love' and 'grace' of God were constantly proclaimed--while
His 'justice' and 'wrath' were studiously ignored. God is 'light' (1 John 1:5)
as well as 'love' (1 John 4:8); 'holy' as well as 'merciful'; 'severe' as well
as 'good' (Romans 11:22). Unless the balance is preserved between those two
sides of the Divine character, not only will He be grievously
misrepresented--but the most serious results will follow!
~ (Arthur Pink, "Love Reproving" 1943)
Thursday, March 19, 2009
This reprehensible laxity, is misnamed "love"
(Arthur Pink, "Love Reproving" 1943)
Few words have been used more inaccurately and loosely in recent years, than has "love." With a great many people--it is but a synonym for moral laxity, weakness of character, a taking the line of least resistance, a quiet tolerating of what is felt to be wrong.
Multitudes of parents have supposed they were treating their children "lovingly" when they overlooked their folly, made excuses for their wildness, and refused to discipline them for disobedience. They have prided themselves on being "kinder" toward their children than the "stern measures" which were meted out to themselves in their own youth. But it is laxity--and not love--which allows a child to have its own way. "He who spares his rod--hates his son; but he who loves him--chastens him early" (Proverbs 13:14). Let those of our readers who have young children ponder Proverbs 19:18; 22:15; 23:13, 14; 29:15, 17, and remember, that those are the words of Him who is Love!
This same evil has held sway in the churches. Leniency and weakness have overridden righteousness and faithfulness. Instead of maintaining and enforcing the discipline which God's Word enjoins--the great majority of the churches have winked at even glaring sins, refusing to deal with those who walk disorderly. This reprehensible laxity, is misnamed "love". A mushy sentimentality which shrank from "hurting the feelings" of others--has ousted all concern for the glory of Christ and the honor of His house.
This is one of the inevitable effects of the lopsided preaching of the pulpit, where the 'love' and 'grace' of God were constantly proclaimed--while His 'justice' and 'wrath' were studiously ignored. God is 'light' (1 John 1:5) as well as 'love' (1 John 4:8); 'holy' as well as 'merciful'; 'severe' as well as 'good' (Romans 11:22). Unless the balance is preserved between those two sides of the Divine character, not only will He be grievously misrepresented--but the most serious results will follow!
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Heb 9:27 And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment,
It was reported today that Natasha Richardson (45 years old), an actress (The Parent Trap and wife of Liam Neeson, mother of their two boys), hit her head in a fall while learning to ski on a bunny hill. An hour later, after getting up and laughing about her fall, she complained of a headache. She was later pronounced brain dead at the hospital. They expect the family will turn off life support machines sometime today.
While I'm not a big fan of the actress, and normally don't report on celebrities, it brought to mind today about how short life is. Moreover, that we can die in the most mundane ways. Man does not know his hour of death, so the question is, where will you be in eternity? Will you go to heaven or Hell, and how do you know? How about your family members? Friends? If you are saved, have you proclaimed the Gospel to them? Or are you silently loving them to Hell?
We do not know God's timing for our lives, but HE is sovereign and is in control of it. He has numbered our days and we will not die one second before hand.
Psa 139:16 Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.
So what are you doing with your life? What does eternity hold for you? For your family members and friends? After death, its too late. Salvation is available while we are among the living. Repent of your sin and unbelief and turn to Christ Jesus alone for forgiveness and salvation.
Heb 3:12 Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God. 13 But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called "today," that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. 14 For we have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original confidence firm to the end. 15 As it is said, "Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion."
Psa 90:10 The years of our life are seventy, or even by reason of strength eighty; yet their span is but toil and trouble; they are soon gone, and we fly away. 11 Who considers the power of your anger, and your wrath according to the fear of you 12 So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom.
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
For centuries Roman Catholicism has laid claim to the supposition that Patrick of Ireland was a Roman priest. However, over 100 hundred years ago W. A. Jarrel, much respected author and church historian, put into print what had been known by Baptists since the very beginning, that Patrick was not a Catholic priest, but rather a Baptist missionary. It is because of this much neglected fact that we put into print this material so that this present generation may know the truth and great heritage of this early Baptist missionary to Ireland. So zealous were these historians of the 1800's and so spirited was their conviction to this that one wrote, "Rome's most audacious theft was when she seized bodily the Apostle Peter and made him the putative head and founder of her system; but next to that brazen act stands her effrontery when she 'annexed' the great missionary preacher of Ireland and enrolled him among her saints" (A Short History of the Baptists , Henry C. Vedder, pg. 71-72).
Most church historians agree that Patrick, originally named Succat (or Succathus) Patricus, was born sometime between the years 360 AD and 387 AD, probably near what is now Dumbarton, Scotland. It is also generally accepted by those knowledgable of the subject that he lived to a well advanced age, some placing him at over 100 years old at the time of his death.
Cathcart, the dean among Baptist apologists, suggests that Patrick is not his name, but rather a title of honor meaning noble and illustrous and was bestowed upon him by his grateful admirers (The Baptist Encyclopedia , by William Cathcart, pg. 886). His writings reveal that his father, Calpurnius, was a deacon in a Baptist church (we know that there were Baptist churches on the British Isle as far back as A.D. 63, History of the Welch Baptists , by J. Davis, Page 14), having apparently been converted to Christ while on a business trip to Rome as he also served as a Roman civil officer. In spite of being reared in a godly home and taught the ways of the Scriptures, Cathcart also states that the young Patrick was "...wild and wicked until his sixteenth year..." when, while working on his father's farm, he and several others were seized and carried away captive by a band of pirates to Ireland, where he was sold into slavery to a petty Irish clan chieftan. For over five years he suffered the atrocities of slavery. Later, however, he would recount that it was during this most dark period of his life that he, himself, was converted to Christ remembering the Christian training he had received from his godly father while but a child.
Regarding this, W. A. Jarrel wrote over one hundred years ago, "...the truth which saved him when a youthful slave in pagan Ireland was taught him in the godly home of...his father" (Baptist Church Perpetuity or History , W. A Jarrel, pg. 472).
Historians also record that "...upon his twenty-first year, he escaped the chains of servitude..." and returned to his father's home in Scotland, only to find that he had died and his land acquired by others. It was during this time that Patrick, "being a stronger Christian, the Lord soon called him back to Ireland as the missionary for that blinded country" (Ibid.). Jarrel further suggests that the more one studies the life, ministry and writings of this Irish "apostle", "...the more he stands out as a Baptist." He, Jarrel, is perhaps among the greatest authorities on the subject of Saint Patrick, as one full chapter of his makes several suggestions as to why Patrick could not have been a Roman Catholic priest:
1. "At the time of Saint Patrick the Romish church was only en embryo".
2. "In St. Patrick's time the authority of the bishop of Rome was not generally recognized."
3. "There is no history to sustain the Romish claim that Patrick was sent to Ireland by Pope Celistine." Not one of the early biographers of his life mentions any ties to Rome. Even in all the writings of Saint Patrick himself there is never any mention of connection with Rome.
Neander, the church historian, wrote, "If Patrick came to Ireland as a deputy from Rome, it might naturally be expected that in the Irish church a certain sense of dependence would always have been preserved towards the mother church. But we find, on the contrary, in the Irish church a spirit of church freedom, similar to that in Britain, which struggled against the yoke of Roman ordinances. We find subsequently among the Irish a much greater agreement with the ancient British than with Roman ecclesiastical usages.
This goes to prove that the origin of the church was independent of Rome, and must be traced solely to the people of Britain... Again, no indication of his connection with the Romish church is to be found in his confesssion; rather everything seems to favor the supposition that he was ordained bishop in Britain itself" (Neander's History of the Christian Church, Volume 2, page 123).
Another Irish scholar says, "...Leo II, was bishop of Rome from 440 to 461 A.D. and upwards of one hundred and forty of his letters to correspondents in all parts of Christendom still remain and yet he never mentions Patrick or his work, or in any way intimates that he knew of the great work being done there."
Professor George T. Stokes, still yet another prominent scholar, declares that prior to the synod of Rathbresail in A.D. 1112, the rule of each Irish church was independent, autonomous, and "...dioceses and diocesan episcopacy had no existence at all."
Considering these indisputable and undeniable facts, it is impossible for Patrick to have been the patron Roman Catholic saint of Ireland. The material is just not there to substantiate any such claim. Baptist pastor, author and historian Gillham says that in the middle of the nineteenth century, Baptists universally accepted the fact that Patrick of Ireland was of apostolic tradition and therefore a Baptist. It was also commonly accepted that the baptism of the heirs to his ministry were also investigated and found to be New Testament in origin. It was only during these last 150 years that Baptists have been willing to relinquish Patrick to the hands of the papacy.
However, the insurmountable evidence of his position among the Baptists of antiquity comes from the writings of this great man himself. While several letters written by Patrick and sent to Christians converted to Christ under his ministry still exist, most of what we know of his beliefs are taken from two documents that he wrote: St. Patrick's Confession, or Epistle to the Irish; and an "Epistle to Coroticus." In these two writings that still survive, it becomes very apparent that this great preacher was not of Roman Catholic persuasion. He was a Baptist through and through, holding recognized Baptist positions on all the cardinal doctrines. Consider these eight (8) conclusive reasons why Saint Patrick was a Baptist!
Number One: St. Patrick Baptized Only Professed Believers
Contrary to Catholic dogma, which teaches that infants are to be "baptized", in all of Patrick's writings he does not mention one single incident when he baptized an infant, much less someone who had not professed Christ as their Saviour. Patrick records the baptism of one convert named Enda the night after his infant son, Cormac, was born. What an ideal opportunity to record the baptism of an infant, and yet Patrick makes no mention of it at all.
Only Enda, a professed believer; not his infant son who could make no claim of Christ. In all of his writings, the great Irish preacher never mentions or even alludes to pedobaptism (the baptism of infants). In fact, each time he refers to baptism at all he calls those ready for the ordinance of baptism "baptized captives", "baptized handmaidens of Christ", "baptized women distributed as rewards", "baptized believers", "men" and "women." In one place, Patrick wrote, "Perhaps, since I have baptized so many thousand men, I might have expected half a screpall [a coin worth six cents] from some of them..." Notice that he refers to having baptized "...so many thousand men..", no infants, but men; adult, professing, believing, responsible men. Another place he writes, "So that even after my death I may leave as legacies to my brethren...whom I have baptized in the Lord, so many thousand men." Again he acknowledges the fact that he has baptized thousands of men, but not one infant.
Number Two: St. Patrick Baptized By Immersion Only
This has been a leading principle among the Baptists since the days of the Apostles and still is today. Again, in all of his writings there is not one shred of evidence that the Irish preacher knew anything of sprinkling. All of the records of his baptisms tell of immersion. Cathcart (along with Nennius, Todd, O'Farrell and other church historians) records one such instance, "When the saint entered Tirawly, the seven sons of Amalgaidh assembled with their followers. Profiting by the presence of so vast a multitude, the apostle entered into the midst of them, his soul inflamed with the love of God, and with a celestial courage preached the truths of Christianity; and so powerful was the effect of his burning words that the seven princes and over twelve thousand more were converted on that day, and were soon baptized in a spring called Tobar Enadhaire" (The Baptist Encyclopedia , by William Cathcart, page 887). Dr. Cathcart further states, "There is absolutely no evidence that any baptism but that of immersion of adult believers existed among the ancient Britons, in the first half of the fifth century, nor for a long time afterwards."
In 1631 the English Baptists discovered, and subsequently corresponded with, small communities of Baptists in Ireland and found them to be sound. These churches, located in Dublin, Waterford, Clonmel, Kilkenny, Cork, Limerick, Galloway, Wexford, Carrick Fergus and Kerry are listed in Joseph Ivimey's comprehensive History of the English Baptists , Volume 1, Pages 240-241. It is believed that some of these churches had histories dating to the time of Patrick. Many of them can substantiate and confirm their claims of such for nearly 1100 years, which places them within two hundred years of Patrick.
Number Three: In Church Government,
St. Patrick Was A Baptist During his ministry, Patrick is recorded to have "founded 365 churches and consecrated the same number of bishops, and ordained 3,000 presbyters (Ancient British and Irish Churches, William Cathcart, page 282). Anglican Bishop Stillingfleet refers to an account of a great council of Brevy, Wales at which there were 118 Irish bishops. Noting that if these were Catholic bishops this little island was in danger of "...going to seed --- in bishops." Other historians concede that "...Saint Patrick placed a bishop in every church which he founded; and several presbyters after the example of the New Testament churches." One such scholar, a Dr. Carew of Maynooth, admits that a bishop "...was simply the pastor of one congregation." The Catholic and protestant idea of a bishop being the head over several churches in different cities was totally unknown among those early churches on the British Isles. This can be confirmed from writings of Irish clergymen dated from A.D. 1112 and reconfirmed from the same in A.D. 1057.
Number Four: Patrick Was A Baptist In Independence From Creeds, Councils, Popes, etc.
Patrick never attended one council and recognized no authority over him, save that of the Lord Jesus Himself. There is not any evidence whatsoever that even remotely suggests that the famed Irish preacher acknowledged any man to be of superior authority, power or position than he. He recognized no Pope. He recognized no Cardinal. In all of his writings it cannot be found where one time he subscribes to even the most insignificant and remote catechism, creed, or dogma of the Roman Catholic system. Of all the great Christians that Patrick refers to in his letters, he never pays homage to any Pope, nor mentions any man as being superior in church clergy. Instead, the great Irish missionary speaks of his love, regards, and terms of affection for those men whom had been ordained as pastors of the churches he founded. Upon the authority of the little Baptist church in Scotland where he was saved and from which he received his commission much as did Paul and Barnabus (Acts 15:22).
Number Five: In Doctrine
Patrick Was A Baptist In all of his writings, all of the doctrine that Patrick espouses adherence to is consistent with historic Baptist doctrine. The venerable preacher wrote, "It is Christ who gave His life for thee (and) is He who speaks to thee. He has poured out upon us abundantly the Holy Spirit, the gift and assurance of immortality, who causes men to believe and become obedient that they might be the sons of God and joint heirs with Christ." In this one statement, Patrick alludes to six (6) major Baptist doctrines:
a. Patrick believed in the substitutionary atonement of Christ. He did not believe that salvation comes through catechism, communion, confession or christening. He believes what Baptists have always believed, that all are saved by the Grace of God, through faith in His Son, coming in repentance, and by His blood. William Cathcart wrote, "There is no ground for doubting but that he preached the gospel of repentance and faith in Ireland, and that his ministrations were attended by overwhelming success" (The Baptist Encyclopedia, page 887).
b. He believes in the free gift of the Holy Spirit which comes to the believer at the moment of salvation. He does not believe that the gift of the Holy Spirit is a separate work of grace, nor is He manifested by speaking in tongues (John 14:16).
c. He also firmly conveys the message of the eternal security of the believer in that those who are genuinely saved have put on immortality (II Timothy 1:10).
d. He confirms his belief that men must be drawn by God in order to be saved (John 6:44).
e. Patrick affirms his conviction in the sonship of the believer (John 1:12). He believes that while Jesus Christ is the only begotten Son of God, every true believer in Christ is also a son.
f. And the great Irish theologian attests to the fact that all believers are joint-heirs with Christ (Romans 8:16-17). Patrick's doctrine is also recorded by his disciples. Comgall writes, "religion does not exist in bodily efforts..." Muirchu states that the ancient poet Dubthac was redeemed under the ministry of Patrick and that he "...first on that day believed in God and it was imputed to him for righteousness" No mention of baptism for salvation. No mention of a confessional. No mention of communion. Patrick taught his disciples well that salvation comes only by and through the grace of Almighty God.
Number Six: In Terms Of The Lord's Supper, Patrick Was A Baptist
From his writings we know that he rejected the Roman Catholic view of salvation in the ordinance. Also from his writings, we know that Patrick believed that the believer himself should partake of both elements of communion, the bread and the cup, and not just the administrator exclusively. In writing of the conversion of the two daughters of Irish King Loeghaire under his ministry, Patrick tells them to put away their idols and trust Christ alone. His instructions to them regarding the Lord's Supper is that they receive both elements representative of His body and blood.
Number Seven: Patrick Rejects The Roman Catholic Dogma Of Transubstantiation
Patrick believed that the elements were only pictures of Christ's body and Christ's blood. Dr. Jarrell wrote, "In all the descriptions of the Eucharist quoted there is no evidence that it is...", or literally becomes the flesh of Christ and His blood. The elements are merely symbols of such.
Number Eight: Patrick Never Affirmed His Belief In, Or Adherence To, Many Crucial Catholic Pecularities
St. Patrick was a Baptist and the first Irish churches were Baptist churches. He knew nothing of priestly confession and priestly forgiveness. He was not acquainted with extreme unction. He strictly forbade the worship of images. Never once did he instruct his converts that they were to pay homage to Mary or worship her. He never mentions the intercession of Mary or of any departed saint. In all of his writings there is no mention at all of purgatory, of indulgences, of keeping holy days, of praying to anyone but God Himself, of the persecution of opposers of the church, of distinguishing clerical garments, of the rosary, of last rites, of mass, of allegiance to the Pope. None of these crucial Catholic doctrines and dogmas were practiced by or even mentioned by the great missionary to Ireland.
It is my firm conviction that it has sufficiently been shown that Saint Patrick was not a Roman Catholic in doctrine or practice, but rather an early Baptist preacher following in the footsteps of the Apostles themselves, believing what they believed, practicing what they practiced. In conclusion, it seems that the words of W.A. Jarrell on this subject are most fitting, "Were Patrick not turned to dust, and were the body able to hear and turn, he would turn over in his coffin at the disgrace on his memory from the Romish church claiming him as a Roman Catholic" (Baptist Church Perpetuity or History, page 479).
Monday, March 16, 2009
By Reb Bradley
Liberals are merely inadequately trained children who grew up and now lead using principles they gleaned from their upbringing," he says.
All people are born liberal, Bradley writes, meaning they are ruled first by their emotions and passions.
"We come into the world determined to survive, and we vehemently express ourselves to get what we need: 'Waaa!' and Momma feeds us," he writes. "'Waaa!' and our diaper is changed' 'Waaa!' and we are put down for a nap. As infants, our strong will can keep us comfortable and alive – the more outspoken we are, the more our needs are met. However, as we start to grow, we no longer cry for our necessities – we crave pleasure, too."
These ideas are not really new, explains Bradley. They are just in need of rediscovery. He points out that in 1926, Minnesota Gov. Theodore Christianson established a state crime commission. At the end of its research, the commission concluded that criminal tendencies were not the result of poverty, education or environment. Instead, it made the following observation: "Every baby starts life as a little savage. He is completely selfish and self-centered, he wants what he wants when he wants it: his bottle, his mother's attention, his playmate's toys, his uncle's watch, or whatever. Deny him these and he seethes with rage and aggressiveness which would be murderous were he not so helpless. He's dirty, he has no morals, no knowledge, no developed skills. This means that all children, not just certain children but all children, are born delinquent. If permitted to continue in their self-centered world of infancy, given free rein to their impulsive actions to satisfy each want, every child would grow up a criminal, a thief, a killer, a rapist."
[Sounds like Romans 1-3 to me!]
"Liberals are like teenagers whose will-to-be-gratified was never subdued, and now cannot grasp the simple logic of what is being said to them," Bradley writes. "They are so emotionally obsessed with getting what their hearts want that they are unwilling to listen to reason. That is why liberals resort to personal attacks, name-calling, accusing, yelling, discrediting, or changing the subject. And that is why they use inflammatory and emotionally charged words like 'intolerant,' 'hateful' and 'racist.' Desperation ensues when passion rules. When passion rules, blindness sets in."
As a result, Bradley says "America is being governed by adults still in their terrible twos."
"Barack Obama is our King Saul," Bradley continues. "Like Saul, he has fooled people on a base, emotional level. And when people can't see beyond their emotions, they are immature and incapable of the kind of self-government that has been the bedrock of America's freedom for the last two centuries."
Many evangelical leaders today, unfortunately, have capitulated to the evolutionary timescale of modern unbelieving geologists and astronomers. They feel that they must somehow reinterpret the Genesis record of creation to allow for billions of prehistoric years, which the evolutionists must have in order to make cosmic evolution and biological evolution seem feasible. This compromise is necessary, they say, in order to win scientists and other intellectuals to the Lord.
We strongly believe that it is a serious mistake when Bible-believing Christians compromise with the great ages demanded by the evolutionists. Various interpretive devices have been suggested by Bible expositors as they try to convert the six-day creation record of Genesis into billions of years. Some will frankly advocate "theistic evolution," but others will call it "process creation," "progressive creation," "multiple creation," or some other term, implying that they still believe in some sort of “creation.”
Every such group must turn to either the "local flood theory" or the "tranquil flood theory" if they are going to hold to the geologic ages, since a global cataclysm such as the Bible describes would have destroyed all evidence for the geologic ages.
Then they go on to patronizingly deplore the supposed anti-intellectualism of what they call "young-earth creationism" (this is their term; we prefer "biblical creationism" or "literal creationism"). They think this position is an embarrassment (one has even called it a "scandal") to evangelicalism.
Indeed, there are now thousands of scientists who believe in recent six-day creation. There are also organizations of scientists who are young-earth creationists in many different countries, as well as in many states in this country.
The difference is this: we believe the Bible must take priority over scientific theories, while they believe scientific theories must determine our biblical interpretations.
It all seems to us to hinge on one overriding question. Do we really believe the Bible to be God's inerrant Word or not? If the Bible is really the Word of our Creator God, then--by definition--it must be inerrant and authoritative on every subject with which it deals. This assumption leads clearly to the conviction that the creation took place in six literal days several thousand years ago. We believe this simply because God said so and said it quite plainly! And then we find also that this revealed fact will fit all the facts of science much better than the long-age evolutionary scenario does.
It is no good to say, as one evangelical leader said recently: "Well, I believe that God could create in six days or six billion years--it makes no difference." Yes it does, because it has to do with God's truthfulness! It is not a matter of what God could do. The question is what God says that He did! And what He said in writing was this, recorded with His own finger on a table of stone: "In six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day" (Exodus 20:11; see also Exodus 31:15-18).**
Others have said: "But God could have created by a long evolutionary process if He wanted to." No, He couldn't! God can do everything except contradict Himself and His own nature. Evolution is the most wasteful and most cruel process that one could ever devise by which to "create" men and women. Christians should not accuse God of being responsible for the evolutionary process.
To us literal creationists, on the other hand, it seems unthinkable that the God of the Bible--the God who is omniscient and omnipotent, merciful and loving--would do anything like that. Surely He could devise and implement a better plan than this. It is true, of course, that in this present age "the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now" (Romans 8:22), but God did not create it as a groaning, dying world. At the end of the creation week, "God saw everything that He had made, and, behold, it was very good" (Genesis 1:31).
The problem is sin. "By one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin, and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned" (Romans 5:12). It will not do, of course, to argue that death affected only Adam and his human descendants, for "death reigned--even over them that had not sinned" (Romans 5:14). God’s curse was on Adam's whole dominion, even the very elements. "Cursed is the ground for thy sake," God told Adam (Genesis 3:17).
Nor will it do to say that the curse applied only to "spiritual" death, on the premise that Adam would eventually have died physically anyway. If that were the case, the bitterly cruel physical suffering and death of Christ on the cross for our sins becomes a travesty.
Unbelievers seem to have a better understanding of this obvious truth than old-earth creationists do. By accepting the geological ages, such creationists are accepting billions of years of suffering and death in God's creation even before sin entered the world--not only man's sin, but even Satan's sin. Thus God would be directly responsible for creating a world which is not good!
Thus the wonderful saving gospel of Christ is essentially subverted and destroyed if we must accept the vast ages of the evolutionary cosmologists and geologists, with their eons-long spectacle of suffering and death as recorded in the global fossil graveyard. Sound theology must say no to any such concession! Fossils speak of death, and death results only from sin and judgment. "Sin...bringeth forth death" (James 1:15). Death is only a temporary intruder into God's very good creation, of course, and in the new earth which is to come, "there shall be no more death" (Revelation 21:4).
"But science has proved the earth is old," they still insist, "and we dare not alienate the academic community by insisting on a literal Genesis." No, "science" has not proved the earth is old! The oldest written records we have, apart from the Bible, are in Egypt and Sumeria, and these only go back a few thousand years. The great fossil "record," instead of displaying vast ages of evolution, really shows the remains of a worldwide hydraulic cataclysm.
In any case, the only way we can know anything about the date of creation (and remember that the word "science" means knowledge!) is for God--who was there--to tell us when He did it. And, of course, He has told us, in His inspired Word. The question is, do we really believe what He says?
****Exo 20:11 For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.
Exo 31:15 Six days shall work be done, but the seventh day is a Sabbath of solemn rest, holy to the LORD. Whoever does any work on the Sabbath day shall be put to death.
Exo 31:16 Therefore the people of Israel shall keep the Sabbath, observing the Sabbath throughout their generations, as a covenant forever.
Exo 31:17 It is a sign forever between me and the people of Israel that in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day he rested and was refreshed.'"
Exo 31:18 And he gave to Moses, when he had finished speaking with him on Mount Sinai, the two tablets of the testimony, tablets of stone, written with the finger of God.
Heb 11:1 Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. 2 For by it the people of old received their commendation. 3 By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible.
Heb 1:3 He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high,
In another article, ICR rightly says:
Many Bible scholars today are buying into the day-age theory of origins. They seem to believe that their biblical views must conform to their mental image of how the world functions today and must be confirmed by members of the non-Christian world, whose minds are darkened (Ephesians 4:17-19).
The claim that yom is a long but finite time period is based on the assertion that yom means "age" in Genesis 2:4. However, in the Hebrew Old Testament yom normally means either a 24-hour day, or the daylight portion of a 24-hour day ("day" as distinct from "night"). It may occasionally be used for an indefinite time (e.g., "days of the judges"), but never as a definite long period of time with a specific beginning and ending.
It is not used even in this indefinite sense except when the context clearly indicates that the literal meaning is not intended. When ordinals or the phrase "evening and morning" are connected with yom, it always means a solar day. The context of the six days of creation account in Genesis 1 precludes any meaning of indefinite time.
Members of a prominent Florida megachurch voted
overwhelmingly Sunday to call the Rev. William Graham Tullian Tchividjian to
serve as its new senior minister.
Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church members also agreed to merge with
Tchividjian’s New City Presbyterian Church in Margate and elected its officers
to serve the Fort Lauderdale congregation.
Tchividjian, a grandson of world renowned evangelist Billy Graham,
called Sunday “momentous and historic.”
“91% of the congregation voted to support the call,” he reported Sunday
in his church blog. “That is a much higher percentage than I anticipated given
the fact that this call involved a merger of two congregations.
“God made his will known with an exclamation point this morning,”
the 36-year-old minister exclaimed.
First of all, and I've seen this always proclaimed by both the voting congregation and the man who is candidating for the job of pastor: numbers dictate to them if its God's will.
This is a problem because its relying on sight not faith, on majority not Truth. When Moses Joshua was to lead the Jews back to the Promised land, there were twelve spies and only two came back with a report of assurance of overtaking the land. The rest thought it was impossible. See Numbers 13:30-31 and also chapter 14. Had Moses (and eventually Joshua) gone with today's "majority means God's will" view, he would have NEVER entered into that land as God commanded. Majority in this case was really the fear of man. As it is today. Security in numbers is NOT fear of God nor trust in HIM. This is absolutely the wrong way to determine God's will. After all His ways are narrow and the pool of biblical believers is few in number anyway.
Now, on to Tullian's hiring as senior pastor. I've noticed that Reformers have been enamoured with this grandson of Billy Graham. I find that interesting considering the man-centeredness that flows through that family's beliefs.
Consider these things:
His second book, Unfashionable: Making a Difference in the World by Being Different (foreword by Tim Keller), is due out from Multnomah next month."
Keller is Emergent with a Reformed bent. But as long as he claims TULIP he gets a free pass AND a big push by Reformers.
The latest on Keller:
Tim Keller is to be a speaker at the 2009 Leadership Summit at Willow Creek Community Church, which includes speakers like: Bill Hybels; Dr. Henry Cloud; Bono.
“Innovation3 is happening later this month in Dallas… January 27-28 to be exact.
Leadership Network has invited over a hundred of the best and brightest ministry leaders to present at Innovation3. You’ll hear from people like Tim Keller, Mark Driscoll, Dino Rizzo, Nancy Ortberg, Larry Osborne, Matt Chandler, Dave Gibbons, Darrin Patrick, Dave Ferguson, Ed Stetzer, Neil Cole, and many more. We’ll be lead in worship by the Robbie Seay Band!” Also Chris Seay will be mc’ing.
Leadership Network is a well established Emergent company that pushes this movement hard, especially this year.
As is normal for Emergent gatherings, many women will be teaching men. This also includes women “ministers” such as Nancy Ortberg who is a teaching pastor at Willow Creek Community Church in South Barrington, Illinois,Theresa McBean, Pastor Laurie Beshore,Missy Hannon is co-executive pastor of Living Hope Church.
Tim Keller is sharing the pulpit with these people.
Tim Keller shares the platform with Gary Lamb at Exponential 09: “Gary Lamb is on the record saying that one of his biggest regrets is that he didn’t club a church lady with a baseball bat, punch her husband in the face and set fire to the church organ.” –Slice of Laodicea
Go here to hear him say it. Note the background stage production (Las Vegas style). He calls the woman he hates “Lucifer” from his last church, blamed that church for almost divorcing, and was responsible for him hating Christians. Yup that’s the man to speak at this conference. NOT.
A Little Leaven reports:
Read what Lamb wrote on his blog to the person who stole one of his church’s trailers:
To the people who stole our trailer:
First let me say, God loves you. Second let me say we forgive you. We really don’t want to forgive you, but God says we should so we do. Third of all I want you to know that I think you are scum bags. I think you are lowlife degenerates who need a good butt kicking. Matter of fact I feel so strongly about the fact that you need a good butt kicking that I am volunteering to do it. I hope you believe in God because you should get on your knees and cry out to Him like never before because if we find you, I can promise we will kick the crap out of you. It won’t be pretty, it won’t be over quickly, and it will be very painful. I know that doesn’t sound very nice but I feel pretty strongly that is what you need.
Note the women who will be teaching men at this conference.
Francis Chan and Tim Keller will be sharing the pulpit with:
Ed Stetzer, John Burke, Alan Hirsch, Erwin McManus, ECM leaders
So to have a connection with Tim Keller isn't good; its bad.
Tullian's list of favorite books include interfaith and ecumenical authors listed. Shane Trammel notes: "T.M. Moore, J.I. Packer, Os Guinness, and Chuck Colson. All four of these men signed the document “Evangelical and Catholics Together”"
Tullian likes Rick Warren. Go here and here on why Rick Warren is a false teacher.
A woman is Director of Ministry Development at his New City Church. Her "testimony" as well as having this kind of leadership role over the direction of the church gives one pause.
His New City Church is EPC which is doctrinally find with the ordination of women. How is this biblical or reformed?
All these issues gives a red flag for Tchividjian being a senior pastor of anything. Of course, D. James Kennedy was pretty man-centered as well, so I think this is actually a good fit. However, the rubber stamping of men who either have famous connections or claim TULIP or Reformed, is utterly shameful, when its clear that such men have shown a lack of biblical discernment.