Radical Takeover Pt. 3 – Rome’s Extreme Liberal Stance on Gun Control

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Rome presents itself to the world as representing the views of conservatives, yet there is an extreme liberal side to Rome that should be noted. One extreme liberal view of Rome is its stance on gun control, as stated below.

TheBlaze.Com

VATICAN CITY (AP) — The Vatican praised President Barack Obama’s proposals for curbing gun violence, saying they are a “step in the right direction.”

The Vatican’s chief spokesman the Rev. Federico Lombardi, said Saturday that 47 religious leaders have appealed to members of the U.S. Congress “to limit firearms that are making society pay an unacceptable price in terms of massacres and senseless deaths.”

“I am with them,” Lombardi said, in an editorial carried on Vatican Radio, lining up the Vatican’s moral Rev. Federico Lombardisupport in favor of firearm limits.

`’The initiatives announced by the American administration for limiting and controlling the spread and use of weapons are certainly a step in the right direction,” Lombardi said.

Lombardi renewed Vatican appeals for disarmament and encouragement for measures to fight “the production, commerce and contraband of all types of arms,” an industry fueled by `’enormous economic and power interests.”

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USCatholic.Org

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — The Catholic Church’s position on gun control is not easy to find; there are dozens of speeches and talks and a few documents that call for much tighter regulation of the global arms trade, but what about private gun ownership?

The answer is resoundingly clear: Firearms in the hands of civilians should be strictly limited and eventually completely eliminated.

But you won’t find that statement in a headline or a document subheading. It’s almost hidden in a footnote in a document on crime by the U.S. bishops’ conference and it’s mentioned in passing in dozens of official Vatican texts on the global arms trade.

The most direct statement comes in the bishops’ “Responsibility, Rehabilitation and Restoration: A Catholic Perspective on Crime and Criminal Justice” from November 2000.

“As bishops, we support measures that control the sale and use of firearms and make them safer — especially efforts that prevent their unsupervised use by children or anyone other than the owner — and we reiterate our call for sensible regulation of handguns.”

That’s followed by a footnote that states: “However, we believe that in the long run and with few exceptions — i.e. police officers, military use — handguns should be eliminated from our society.”

That in turn reiterates a line in the bishops’ 1990 pastoral statement on substance abuse, which called “for effective and courageous action to control handguns, leading to their eventual elimination from our society.”

On the world stage, the Vatican has been pushing for decades for limitations not just on conventional weapons of warfare, such as tanks and missiles, but also for stricter limitations on the illegal and legal sale, trade and use of small firearms and weapons, said Tommaso Di Ruzza, the expert on disarmament and arms Tommaso Di Ruzzacontrol at the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace.

Di Ruzza told Catholic News Service that the Vatican is one of just a handful of states that would like to see small arms and weapons included in the U.N. Arms Trade Treaty, which would better regulate the flow of conventional arms.

He said while many countries are open to limits on larger weapons systems, most nations aren’t interested in regulating small arms even though they “cause more deaths than all other arms (conventional and non-conventional) together.”

The Vatican’s justice and peace council is working to update its 1994 document, “The International Arms Trade,” to further emphasize the importance of enacting concrete controls on handguns and light weapons, he said.

The current document calls on every nation and state “to impose a strict control on the sale of handguns and small arms. Limiting the purchase of such arms would certainly not infringe on the rights of anyone.”

The more weapons there are in circulation, the more likely terrorists and criminals will get their hands on them, the document said.

The Catholic Church recognizes that “states will need to be armed for reason of legitimate defense,” as Pope Benedict XVI said in a message to a Vatican-sponsored disarmament conference in April 2008.

However, armed defense is something appropriate for nations, not for all individual citizens in a state where rule of law is effective, said Di Ruzza.

According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, individuals have a right and a duty to protect their own lives when in danger, and someone who “defends his life is not guilty of murder even if he is forced to deal his aggressor a lethal blow.”

How that “lethal blow” could be licitly wielded is unclear, but the catechism clarifies that repelling the aggressor must be done “with moderation” in order to be “lawful” in the eyes of the church; using “more than necessary violence” would be unlawful, it says.

According to the catechism, the right to use firearms to “repel aggressors” or render them harmless is specifically sanctioned for “those who legitimately hold authority” and have been given the duty of protecting the community.

Di Ruzza said that in “a democracy, where there is respect for institutions (of law), the citizen relinquishes his right to revenge onto the state,” which, through its law enforcement and courts system, aims to mete out a fair and just punishment.

“There is a sort of natural right to defend the common interest and the common good, and in 1791 (when the United States passed the Second Amendment), my right to have a weapon served the common good because there wasn’t an army; the democratic institutions were young and a little fragile, and I could have been useful in a time of war as a soldier,” said Di Ruzza.

But once a nation has a functioning army, police force and court system, “do I still serve the common good with my gun or do I put it at even greater danger?” and promote a lawless kind of “street justice where if you steal my car, I shoot you,” he asked.

The Vatican’s justice and peace council’s 1994 document said, “In a world marked by evil and sin, the right of legitimate defense by armed means exists,” but, Di Ruzza said, it wasn’t lauding the potential of weaponry as much as it was lamenting the existence of arms in an imperfect world.

Nations have a duty, the document said, to reduce if not eliminate the causes of violence.

And as Pope Benedict wrote in his message to the disarmament conference, no reduction or elimination of arms can happen without eliminating violence at its root.

Every person “is called to disarm his own heart and be a peacemaker everywhere,” the pope said.

 

AmericaMagazine.Org

Why Gun Control is a Religious Issue by James Martin, SJ

These shootings would not have happened if the shooter did not have such easy access to firearms and ammunition.  So religious people need to be invited to meditate on the connection between the more traditional “life issues” and the overdue need for stricter gun control.  The oft-cited argument, “Guns don’t kill people, people do,” seems unconvincing.  Of course people kill people; as people also procure abortions,martin_j_1 decide on euthanasia and administer the death penalty.  Human beings are agents in all these matters.  The question is not so much how lives are ended, but how to make it more difficult to end lives.

Pro-life religious people need to consider how it might be made more difficult for people to procure weapons that are not designed for sport or hunting or self-defense.  Why would anyone be opposed to firmer gun control, or, to put it more plainly, laws that would make it more difficult for mass murders to occur?  If one protests against abortions clinics because they facilitate the taking of human life, why not protest against largely unregulated suppliers of firearms because they facilitate the taking of human life as well?

This stance will most likely be unpopular politically.  Some on the political right will object my stance on firmer gun control.  Some of the political left will object to my stance on abortion.  But that doesn’t bother me, because I am not political.  I am religious.  And so I am for the sanctity of life.  Therefore, I am for stricter gun-control laws that will protect lives, not end them.

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Worldview Weekend’s Commentary on “Passion 2013”

passion2013

Worldview Weekend.Com

Jesus Culture and Judah Smith to Join Piper, Moore, Chan and Others at Giglio’s Passion 2013

A new year means a fresh batch of conferences. And a fresh batch of conferences means a whole new crop of questionable decisions being made by the leaders and organizers of those gatherings.

To start off the 2013 conference season is Louie Giglio’s Passion 2013. Held at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta, it will run from 1–4 January. Giglio aims this gathering specifically at young people, and according to the event’s website, last year saw “more than 40,000 students and leaders from around the world” at the US event. Today The Christian Postreports that 60,000 students are scheduled to attend this week’s event.

Source

Passion targets the younger generation with such high-profile names as Beth Moore, John Piper, Francis Chan, rapper Lecrae and this year, pastor Judah Smith of The City Church in Seattle and popular Christian band, Jesus Culture.

Who Is Judah Smith?

Judah Smith has been profiled briefly here before when, in May of this year, Smith invited Word Faith teacher Brian Houston of Hillsong Church (who, incidentally, just preached weekend services at Rick Warren’s Saddleback Church) to preach at The City Church. Oddly enough, New Calvinist pastor Mark Driscoll was excited about the invitation, even encouraging his Twitter followers to attend.

Judah Smith co-pastors his church with his wife, Chelsea, making the Reformed Driscoll’s endorsement even more perplexing. The presence of a pastrix at The City Church ought not surprise, though, when it is considered that this church was founded by Judah’s parents, pastor Wendell and pastrix Gini Smith:

Source

The reader will note that, in the screenshot above, it states that Wendell and Gini Smith originally served under Dick Iverson at Bible Temple in Portland. According to C. Peter Wagner’s book Apostles Today: Biblical Government for Biblical Power, Iverson was the “founder of one of America’s foremost apostolic networks, Ministers Fellowship International, out of Portland, Oregon.” So it sounds as though The City Church has some rather colorful roots.

Who Is Jesus Culture?

Speaking of colorful, this leads to the concerning inclusion by Louie Giglio of the “Christian” music group, Jesus Culture. The group’s website tells us that it was spawned out of the youth group at Bill Johnson’s Bethel Church in Redding, California. For those who are unfamiliar with Johnson and Bethel, the following video shares some of the “signs and wonders” shenanigans that take place there, and also demonstrates some classic Bill Johnson Scripture-twisting:

Now, one could camp for quite awhile on some of the statements made by Johnson in that video, but since Johnson is not under discussion here, we’ll move on. The point is, of course, that this is the church that birthed the Jesus Culture phenomenon.

The entirety of Jesus Culture’s “About Us” page warrants a close examination, and will aid in understanding why Christians should be concerned that this band is being mainstreamed by men like Louie Giglio:

Source

The choice of words in the paragraphs above is curiously alarming. The language surrounding a “new breed of revivalists” emerging is of particular interest, as such vocabulary is prominent within the New Apostolic Reformation movement.

Note also that the group claims direct revelation and instruction from the Lord Himself.

The members of Jesus Culture claim that the Lord spoke to them, revealing the characteristics of their movement (which noticeably does not include repentance or sanctification, only love and supernatural experience), commissioning them to “mobilize this new breed,” and in so doing issued a mandate to Jesus Culture that cannot be ignored. Taking this to its logical conclusion, then, to question the actions or words of Jesus Culture and its members is to question God Himself.

Examination of this website further reveals that the goal of this group is to lead people into an experience or an “encounter” with God. It seems that truth may be cast aside in favor of temporary and potentially deceiving experiences.

The Music of Jesus Culture

It behooves us, then, to see just how it is that the music of Jesus Culture may lull the professing Christian teenager into a so-called “encounter” with God. Below you will witness the group leading the crowd in a repetitive mantra, followed by some singing and what appears to be tongues-speaking. The clip will close with band member Kim Walker-Smith breaking into spontaneous prayer and declaration.

The repetition of the mantra “Jesus” at the beginning of the clip, while appearing to be spiritual, actually potentially could lead a person into an altered state of consciousness. Contemplative prayer, which is little more than a “Christianized” version of Eastern meditation, often encourages such a practice, as one seeks to journey inward to discover the “divine spark” within oneself. Yet, Scripture nowhere teaches this type of praise or prayer, but rather condemns the practices of pagan religions.

Also of note in the clip above is the apparent spontaneous breakout into tongues at approximately 2:30, following the singing of the line, “Heaven beckons to me.” The fact that these were nothing more than gibberish and were not a known language, as per the biblical definition of ‘tongues,’ ought to cause concern as well.

In watching and listening to Jesus Culture, it does not take long to realize that the focus of their music and teaching is all about an experience of “God’s love.” Yet, without acknowledging the righteous wrath of God, His love can never fully be understood or appreciated. Unfortunately, a warm-fuzzy feeling up and down one’s spine does not a true Christian make.

The “Teaching” of Jesus Culture

Jesus Culture does more than simply play music, however. It seems that, at times, various members of the group also may preach or teach. Below is Jesus Culture member Kim Walker-Smith preaching to a large crowd at the Awakening 2011 event, and offering a rather detailed account of her own personal encounter with “Jesus.” This video is a bit lengthy, but the reader is urged to watch it in its entirety.

Kim Walker-Smith claims that she spoke with Jesus, that He cuddled her, and that she saw God the Father. And while she acknowledges that such visions are not regular occurrences, she nevertheless indicates that she’s had multiple encounters with Him. One wonders how many people sitting amongst that large crowd left disappointed that night that they had not “encountered” Jesus as Kim Walker-Smith claimed that she had. Walker-Smith’s recollection of the vision is natural, and seems to presume that everyone should experience such a thing. Yet, when face to face with God Almighty, how did Isaiah react?

In the year that King Uzziah died I saw the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up; and the train of his robe filled the temple. Above him stood the seraphim. Each had six wings: with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. And one called to another and said:

“Holy, holy, holy is the LORD of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory!”

And the foundations of the thresholds shook at the voice of him who called, and the house was filled with smoke. And I said: “Woe is me! For I am lost; for I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts!” (Isaiah 6:1–5)

And Ezekiel?

And above the expanse over their heads there was the likeness of a throne, in appearance like sapphire; and seated above the likeness of a throne was a likeness with a human appearance. And upward from what had the appearance of his waist I saw as it were gleaming metal, like the appearance of fire enclosed all around. And downward from what had the appearance of his waist I saw as it were the appearance of fire, and there was brightness around him. Like the appearance of the bow that is in the cloud on the day of rain, so was the appearance of the brightness all around. Such was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the LORD. And when I saw it, I fell on my face…(Ezekiel 1:26–28)Moses, who we are told spoke to the Lord as a man speaks to a friend (Exodus 33:11), was not even allowed to see Him in all of His glory!

Moses said, “Please show me your glory.” And he said, “I will make all my goodness pass before you and will proclaim before you my name ‘The LORD.’ And I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show mercy on whom I will show mercy. But,” he said, “you cannot see my face, for man shall not see me and live.” And the LORD said, “Behold, there is a place by me where you shall stand on the rock, and while my glory passes by I will put you in a cleft of the rock, and I will cover you with my hand until I have passed by. Then I will take away my hand, and you shall see my back, but my face shall not be seen.” (Exodus 33:18–23)Not one of these men, after a brief moment of awestruck fear, “fell into Jesus’ arms” as Walker-Smith claims that she did. Not one describes God the Father running around deliriously and laughing while Isaiah or Ezekiel danced around in a music box. So to Kim Walker-Smith’s claims above that she has spoken personally with Jesus Christ and God the Father, I would like to offer this challenge: Prove it. And while you’re at it, disprove this: God just spoke to me and told me that you are lying, Kim Walker-Smith. Don’t believe me? Well, who is to say that your experience was real and mine was not?

Christian, herein lies the grave danger of such claims of personal revelation and visitations from God. They cannot be proven and they are not Scriptural. If they are to be found in Scripture, they appear to be more indicative of the deceptive angel of light (2 Cor. 11:14–15) than anything else.

Parents, if your teenager is attending Passion 2013 this week, this is the type of so-called Christian leaders to whom they are being exposed. This is the type of music that will bombard their eardrums during these four days. If your impressionable teen is wandering in the crowd of Passion 2013, it is my prayer that you will pray mightily for his or her protection.

What Happened at Passion 2012?

As a reminder, last year’s Passion Conference saw the featured speakers lead the humongous crowd in a troubling display of “Lectio Divina-lite.” In the post, “Biblical Silence vs. Mystical Silence and What Really Went On at Passion 2012?” the topics of contemplative prayer and lectio divina were discussed more thoroughly. The following videos of Session 5 of the Passion 2012 conference also were shared in that article.

Here is popular New Calvinist preacher John Piper:

Here we see the SBC’s favorite female Bible teacher, Beth Moore:

And here is Passion founder Louie Giglio closing this session:

Of special note are the words spoken by Giglio at the close of this exercise:

How many of you heard the voice of God speak specifically, clearly, directly, and personally, to you? Can you just put a hand up? I’d like you to share it. Can you put a hand up for a minute?

Just want you to look around; that’s people saying, “God Almighty (pause) the Maker of heaven (pause) the one Who’s sitting on the only throne (pause) that’s not under threat (long pause, audience cheers)—He spoke to me. He spoke to me.”

“God spoke to me.” (long pause) Don’t let the voice of the darkness, tell you that you are not (pause) worth (pause) that God would not speak to you. (pause) Don’t let him tell you, you don’t matter. (pause) God spoke to you.

As was asked in last year’s reporting of this event: When did Protestant leaders begin to teach that we need the Bible “plus” anything? God has spoken. He has graciously, clearly, and perfectly spoken in His Word. We have no need to be still and wait for His audible voice outside of Scripture. He has not stuttered. He has not stammered. He has not whispered. If you want to hear from God Almighty, open your Bible and read.

Until Passion 2013 commences, there is no way to know if a similar exercise will be practiced again. A live stream of the event will be provided, and those who are concerned may want to take the time to watch some of the sessions.

Conclusion

It is important to note that this article is not attempting to throw anyone under the guilt-by-association bus. No one is saying that, because one of these individuals will be sharing the stage with another that they necessarily endorse that other person’s ministry. Of course, that does not speak to the wisdom of certain speakers choosing to participate in this event. What must be acknowledged, however, is that simply by extending an invitation to these individuals, Passion founder Louie Giglio is issuing an apparent endorsement of each one’s ministry. For those who maintain that Giglio is a conservative and trusted teacher, this poses a rather complicated problem.

Evangelicalism appears to be taking broader strides toward the wide road of destruction. Compromise is rampant as numbers take priority over fidelity to Scripture. These are not small issues, dear Christian. What we are witnessing is the mainstreaming of movements that once existed only on the fringe of the “Christian” community, such as Word Faith and dangerous, deceptive “charismatic chaos.” In the face of the visible church’s compromise, the true Christian must stand on God’s Word alone. To ground oneself upon anything else is to guarantee a certain, perhaps eternal, collapse.

Related articles are listed below:

  1. Of Chaos and Confusion: The Modern Church ~ By Megiddo Films
  2. The New Christianity Pt. 10 – Setting the Stage for ‘The False Prophet’
  3. The New Christianity Pt. 6 – The ‘New Age’ Experience-Based Religion

The New Christianity Pt. 12 – Alice Bailey & The Christian World Servers

world servers

WorldServerFoundation.Org

Vision and Mission

Our vision

Our vision is a world where collaboration and co-operation are recognised as essential in solving the contemporary challenges – social, economic, political and environmental – facing the global community.

Mission statement

The mission of the World Servers Foundation is to highlight and facilitate the positive work of others and to promote and cultivate the inherent ability within all human beings to bring about positive change.

We believe that co-operation and collaboration are vital next steps in human history and that these will be essential features of our longer-term survival.

On a daily basis we will contribute to a more stable and co-operative world community through:

Education and Encouragement – Providing courses and retreats for people who are in a position to influence, motivate and educate others. These courses and retreats will provide a forum for fresh perspectives on the nature of education and human development and will help key decision makers and educators bring about positive change within their respective fields and to leverage this position for wider impact.

Providing a platform for global discussion and debate that enables individuals and organisations at all levels, in every country, to tell their story, express their feelings, highlight key issues and showcase work in all areas related to positive change.

Using the media and the power of the internet as a collaborative educational platform.

Creativity and Connection – Network building: locating, connecting and communicating the initiatives worldwide which are serving the good of their communities and providing ways for others to be involved and further this work.

To identify and connect groups and individuals in areas such as education, science, the arts, business, charity and politics who are aligned with this vision and mission, making their service more visible and tangible.

To provide platforms for practical expression, action, creativity, discussion and collaboration.

Neutrality – To maintain religious, social and political neutrality, free from the influence of any particular country, organisation or group.

This mission stems from our desire to make visible the power of the human spirit and goodwill by highlighting those thoughts and actions that go beyond individual interests and serve the good of the whole.Through this work we aim to educate and encourage others and therefore increase the pace and volume of positive change around the world to meet our core vision.

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The herald of the “world servers” was occultist, Alice Bailey, who was the founder of Lucis Trust, which was originally Alice-baileyfounded as Lucifer Trust in the early 1920’s. Bailey was a Luciferian, a the herald of the New Age, and she wrote extensively about the coming new world order, and its “world servers”. She described the world servers in the following:

Lucis Trust

The “world servers” are people who seek to serve the good of the whole, share the same consciousness, carries out every activity which forwards, and fosters, good will and right relations. They seek to be harmless, constructive, and inclusive, in their thinking, and in their actions. World servers are active in all fields of life, and all countries. They are laying the foundations for right relations, and world unity. The new group of world servers is a living organization. It is not an organization. It has no headquarters, or official representatives. Every person, in every country, who is living a life of service to the good of the whole, is a member of the group. Every man, and woman, in every country, who is working to heal the breeches between people, to evoke a sense of brotherhood, to foster a sense of mutual interrelation, and interdependence, and who sees no racial, national, nor religious barriers, are part of the new group of world servers, even if they never heard of it by name. Members of the group are active in all branches of human enterprise. They include creative workers, psychologists, teachers, scientists, political workers, religious workers, business people, financiers, labor & management, environmentalists, and human rights workers.

 For more information on Alice Bailey’s description of the “world servers”, click on the link entitled “The New Group of World Servers“.

Tony Blair, who is a member of the Fabian Society has established the Tony Blair Faith Foundation, which includes Pastor of Saddleback Church, and author of “The purpose Driven Life”, Rick Warren, as one of the members of its religious advisory council. Rick Warren has been highly involved in working for world peace & security by his rick warrenhumanitarian work in countries around the world through church planting, and has even signed a document which affirms the Universalist’s claim that the God of Christians and the god of Islam is the same god, who they both serve for the sake of world peace, called “A Christian Response to ‘A Common Word between Us and You’“. According to the statement below, the Tony Blair Faith Foundation is geared toward the same agenda as Alice Bailey’s “world servers”, by using religion as a tool to secure, and sustain, world peace.

The Tony Blair Faith Foundation

 The Tony Blair Faith Foundation promotes understanding and respect between the world’s major religions. We believe this is central to a policy to secure sustained peace.

The world continues to become increasingly interconnected. Old boundaries of culture and identity are being eroded. However, faith has remained at the core of life for billions of people. It underpins systems of thought and behaviour.

Faith can be used to unite people around a common cause. But too often, faith can also be distorted and used to fan the flames of hatred and extremism.

The Tony Blair Faith Foundation supports and collaborates with those who seek peace. We educate and develop understanding about religion in the modern world by promoting leadership, literacy and lives.

  • Leadership: we seek to ensure that current and future leaders understand the role religion plays in the modern, globalising world.
  • Literacy: we educate and support young people to help them become global citizens.
  • Lives: we help religious communities in 140+ countries work together to save lives.

We do this through three innovative programmes Faith and Globalisation Initiative, Faiths Act, and Face to Faith.

The Christian “world servers” can be seen in world-wide church planting initiatives that seeks spiritual, social, and cultural transformation of entire cities and regions, which is not evangelism, but the changing of various people’s world views for the purpose of uniting the church with the secular communities of the world. Below is an example of global church planting of Christians, who’s, ecumenical, dominionist’s agenda, reflects the agenda of the “world servers”.

Global Church Advancement

This GCA Church Planting and Renewal Conference is an inter-denominational training event designed to equip church planters, pastors, and lay-leaders to start, grow and multiply healthy, gospel-centered churches that result in the spiritual, social and cultural transformation of entire cities and regions.

Christian leaders from more than 50 countries, representing over 300 denominations and mission agencies, have taken this church planter training.

Our Plan –

In order to best accomplish our strategy, GCA has designed a tactical plan to equip church leaders to start, grow and multiply Gospel-Centered Churches that intentionally form Church Planting Networks and Alliances that will, by God’s grace, birth Church Planting Movements and Gospel Renewal Movements. This is the strategy through which we pray that God’s invisible Kingdom will be made visible among social gospelall nations—resulting in the fulfillment of the Great Commission (Matt. 28:16-20). This plan includes starting, growing and multiplying:

Churches

A Gospel-Centered Church focuses its ministries primarily on: 1) Evangelism (good news for the lost), 2) discipleship (good news for the found), and 3) societal transformation (good news for the community). A Gospel-Centered Church shares a Kingdom vision for the spiritual, social and cultural renewal of its community, region, nation and the world through starting, growing and multiplying churches by the power of the gospel in word and deed. The plan is not merely to start Gospel Centered Churches but also Church Planting Networks.

Timothy Keller, Pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church, who also teaches this false gospel of cultural renewal, described his approach to proclaiming the gospel of cultural transformation below, which also reflects the agenda of the world servers, but on a city-wide scale, instead of nation wide.

ChristianityToday.Com

First, that Christ changes the way we use wealth and power. Our understanding of work must reflect what Robert Bellah (from his book, Habits of the Heart) describes as a contribution to the common good. Along this line, I’d express a desire to populate the city with people who embody this vision. I’dTim Keller Headshot want to see an explosion of philanthropy, in which we don’t spend money on ourselves, but instead cooperate with others who want to make the city a desirable place to live. Much like Wilberforce did in the early part of 19th-century England, we would pursue healing and redemption.

Second, I would address artists and thought-leaders, emphasizing that Christians have a positive outlook for the future over and against the dystopian pessimism that so often characterizes evangelicals. We are not naïve about suffering and evil, but we have a long term hope for society that can seize an ordinary life.

Third, we’d like to encourage growing civility and true pluralism in our society, that is, to counteract anger and contribute to the creation of an atmosphere of mutual respect among people of differing beliefs.

What makes the Christian “world servers” different from the secular “world servers” is their traditional views on morality, such as their opposition to same sex marriage, and abortion. Nevertheless, each younger generation becomes more liberal, due to the culture’s secular education, the influence of the secular media, mainstream arts & entertainment, and the growing liberal Christianity. The result of the growth in liberal Christian views will cause the true followers of Christ, who strictly adhere to Scripture, and separate themselves from the world’s herd mentality, to seem like a strange fringe group among Christians, who are out of touch with, what the world is now learning to believe is, Christ’s work of redemption, and Christian love, peace, unity, humility, and godliness. But this false Christianity cannot put out the light of the gospel. Instead, it will only cause its proclamation to shine brighter by way of the church’s love for one another, and through the boldness of their preaching in the midst of persecution.

Matthew 5

10    Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
11    Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
12    Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.
13    Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.
14    Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.
15    Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.
16    Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

John 13

34    A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.
35    By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.

Matthew 10

34    Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.
35    For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.
36    And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household.
37    He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.
38    And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me.
39    He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it.

2Thessalonians 1

3    We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is meet, because that your faith groweth exceedingly, and the charity of every one of you all toward each other aboundeth;
4    So that we ourselves glory in you in the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that ye endure:
5    Which is a manifest token of the righteous judgment of God, that ye may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which ye also suffer:
6    Seeing it is a righteous thing with God to recompense tribulation to them that trouble you;
7    And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels,
8    In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ:
9    Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power;
10    When he shall come to be glorified in his saints, and to be admired in all them that believe (because our testimony among you was believed) in that day.
11    Wherefore also we pray always for you, that our God would count you worthy of this calling, and fulfil all the good pleasure of his goodness, and the work of faith with power:
12    That the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you, and ye in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.

1Thessalonians 5

1    But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you.
2    For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night.
3    For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.
4    But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief.
5    Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness.
6    Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober.
7    For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night.
8    But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation.
9    For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ,
10    Who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him.
11    Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do.

John 16

1    These things have I spoken unto you, that ye should not be offended.
2    They shall put you out of the synagogues: yea, the time cometh, that whosoever killeth you will think that he doeth God service.
3    And these things will they do unto you, because they have not known the Father, nor me.
4    But these things have I told you, that when the time shall come, ye may remember that I told you of them. And these things I said not unto you at the beginning, because I was with you.
33    These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.

1John 5

1    Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him.
2    By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments.
3    For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.
4    For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.
5    Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?
6    This is he that came by water and blood, even Jesus Christ; not by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is truth.
18    We know that whosoever is born of God sinneth not; but he that is begotten of God keepeth himself, and that wicked one toucheth him not.
19    And we know that we are of God, and the whole world lieth in wickedness.
20    And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life.

Revelation 1

7    Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen.

Revelation 2

24 I will put upon you none other burden.
25    But that which ye have already hold fast till I come.
26    And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations:
27    And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father.
28    And I will give him the morning star.
29    He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.

Revelation 22

11    He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still.
12    And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.
13    I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.
14    Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.
15    For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.
16    I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star.
17    And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.
20    He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus.
21    The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.

Related articles are listed below:

  1. The Emerging Third Way of Apostate Pastors and Globalist Leaders
  2. Emphasis Shifts for New Breed of Evangelicals
  3. War on Consciousness Pt. 17 – IB’s “World Peace” Indoctrination

The New Christianity Pt. 11 – Commentary by Ken Silva on the Modern Church

elephant-room-panel

SAIDRadio.Net

Today we were blessed to interview Ken Silva of Apprising Ministries and Pastor of Conneticut River Baptist Church Claremont, New Hampshire. Today Ken will give us some background on how Apprising Ministries got started, comment on modern day christian worship, the emergent church’s impact on today’s church, the connection b/w the word faith / seeker driven movement among many other topics. We hope you are blessed, let’s listen in.
Click here to listen or right click to save an mp3 of our interview:

http://ccodtruth.org/InterviewSAIDRadioKenSilva.mp3

Ken’s Website:
www.apprising.org

Related links are listed below:

  1. Church of Tares: Purpose Driven, Seeker Sensitive, Church Growth, and New World Order
  2. Religious Trojan Horse ~ By Brannon Howse
  3. The New Christianity Pt. 6 – The “New Age” Experience-Based Religion

Test All Things Pt. 4 – Being “Missional”

incarnational

Is the Jesus of incarnational ministry the same as the Jesus that is presented in Scripture?

This question must be asked in light of the new movement in evangelicalism, known as being “missional” and “incarnational”. Many Reformed Theology adherents are following this movement with zeal, and are even learning about it in seminaries, such as Westminster Theological Seminary. Incarnational ministry is built upon the, Pelagian, “substitutionary theory” of Christ’s Atonement, which claims that Christ came into the world to give mankind a moral example of how to live. Although this is being taught in Reformed Seminaries, it is not being taught to the exclusion of the, Reformed, “vicarious substitutionary” view of the Atonement, which rightly claims that Christ came into the world to pay the penalty for the sins of mankind (Romans 3:21-26, Romans 5:18-19) . Therefore, two doctrines are being merged as one within the minds of many new Calvinists.

This merging of the two views of Christ’s Atonement is the basis for incarnational ministry, which is an attempt to follow Christ’s example of being a humanitarian, for the purpose of evangelism, and, for some, bringing about the kingdom of God on earth, as though the church age is the thousand year reign of Christ on earth. This movement holds a promise of a better world, which will be brought about through the good works of one’s own hands, for many who follow it. This better world is to be realized by taking on the social problems of the world as though the church has been empowered by Christ to put an end to the affects of sin, such as poverty, war, and tyranny (Revelation 6:1-6). This is why many new Calvinists claim to be on a mission of reclaiming the culture, and even creation itself. Many have even taken the focus off of evangelism, and have, instead, began teaching the Jesus came to reconcile all creation to himself, and therefore, he has reconciled his church to creation. They are also teaching that God made mankind to be creators, just as God is a creator. This belief that the church will bring about the redemption of all things is consistent with the 1679 “Prophecy of the Coming Kingdom by the Christian mystic, Jane Lead, minus the conversion of the world through signs, and wonders, but it is inconsistent with the teachings of Scripture.

In order to believe that the church is able to bring about a better world, certain Biblical truths must be ignored, misinterpreted, and even completely thrust aside.  One of those truths is Revelation 12, which teaches that Satan has been cast down to the earth, and is full of wrath, because he knows that he only has a short time to persecute Christians. Also, 2Corinthians 4:4 teaches that Satan is the ruler of this world. Daniel 12, Revelation 13, 19 and 20, shows that Christians will endure persecution, and murder, until Christ returns, and destroys this present world’s system, and sets up his own kingdom, which is the kingdom of Heaven come down to earth. These passages, and many others, prove that Christ did not send his church to reclaim, or to transformed, the culture, because it is Satan’s territory. Jesus’ return to earth,  and nothing else, will transform this world.

Christ’s incarnation was not centered on humanitarianism, but saving lost souls from eternal punishment, and reconciling them to God. Jesus clearly affirms this when he said “…the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost”, and “…as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life. For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved” (Luke 19:10, John 3:14-17). Also, Christ’s ministry of preaching the gospel for the saving of the lost was the same ministry that he gave to his Apostles. That is why Jesus said “Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day:
And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. And ye are witnesses of these things. And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high”, “…and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth” (Luke 24:46-49, Acts 1:8). That is why Paul said, “all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God. For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.” (2Corinthians 5:18-21).

Therefore, the Jesus of incarnational ministry, who came into the world to empower his church to teach the world how incarnational ministryto be good people, is not the Jesus of the Bible. The real Jesus is the Savior of the world, and not a humanitarian. To merge two different teachings of who Jesus is, by teaching both the Pelagian and the vicarious substitutionary view of the Atonement, is to create a different god – a false God. According to the Apostle John, those who try to change the teachings of who Christ is, is an antichrist (1John 4:1-3).

The proof that the missional movement is not from Christ can also be found in the actions of the movement. For example: the movement is not centered on evangelism, and discipleship, but embracing the non-believing communities of the world as though it were the church; thus blurring the lines between those who are the family of God, and those who are not. This is also reinforced by applying certain passages of Scripture that only apply to the church to everyone in the community in which a local church is planted in, such as the following passage:

Matthew 25

31    When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory:
32    And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats:
33    And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left.
34    Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:
35    For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in:
36    Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me.
37    Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink?
38    When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee?
39    Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee?
40    And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.
41    Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:
42    For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink:
43    I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not.
44    Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee?
45    Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me.
46    And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.

This passage is used to support the social efforts of the missional movement, when it is really addressing Christ command to his church to love one another, by saying “Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me”, and “Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me” (Matthew 25:40 & 45). The world is not Christ’s brethren, but the church is. Incarnational ministry ignores that important detail.

Some have also used the Apostles’ charge to Paul to remember the poor, which Paul was also eager to do (Galatians 2:10). But Paul’s ministry to the poor did not reflect the missional movement, because the book of Acts, as well as, Paul’s epistles, did not mention Paul caring for the poor people of the unbelieving world. Instead, what is mentioned in 2Corinthians 8 is Paul’s collection of the gifts of the Gentile churches for the relief of the poor believers in Jerusalem, which began in Acts 11:19-20, because of a great famine that impoverished Judea. No where in Scripture has Paul reflected the work of the missional movement.

Is it wrong to meet the needs of the poor?

It is wrong to call humanitarian work “the work of God”, because believing in Jesus is the work of God in the world (John 6:26-29). To call something else that Scripture does not acknowledge as “the work of God” for the church, is to take the Lord’s name in vain, and God will not hold such a person, or movement, guiltless who does this, because it is contrary to the will of Christ (Exodus 20:7, Luke 12:47-48).

Nevertheless, it is not wrong to meet the needs of the poor “For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself” (Galatians 5:14). Therefore, it is not wrong to meet the needs of poor unbelievers, but it is wrong to call this act the work of Christ’s church, or incarnational minsitry, or being missional.

It is by the church’s love for one another that the world will know that they belong to God, because they love one another just as Christ loved them (John 13:34-35). This is one of the ways that the church allows their light to shine, so that men will see their good deeds, and glorify their Father in Heaven (Matthew 5:14-16). This love for other believers is the light of the church that has been recorded in Scripture in passages such as Acts 2:42-47, Acts 4:32-37, and Acts 6:1-6). Furthermore, this kind of love was also taught by the Apostles in passages such as Romans 12:4-16, Romans 15:1-7, 1Corinthians 13, Philippians 2:1-8, James 2:14-16, 1John 3:16-19.

Therefore, the missional movement would do well to redirect its focus from the world, and onto loving the church just as Christ loved his church. A movement such as that could indeed be supported by Scripture, but the social efforts of incarnational ministry, which is nothing more than the social gospel, is the work of a different religion. This work will only serve to cause people to hope in an earth-based/works-based salvation. Such a movement is not the work of God, but it is more consistent with the ministry of white-wash, which the false prophets of Israel were well adapt in (Ezekiel 13:4-14).

In conclusion, incarnational ministry is not the work of the gospel, but it is the work of the social gospel that is deceiving Christians into putting their efforts towards helping the world to work for, and hope in, an earth-based/works-based salvation. It is causing people to be under the same condemnation that the rich man of Luke 12:16-21, who was not condemned for being greedy, but for not preparing for the more weightier matter of being justified before God. The missional movement does this by taking the focus off of evangelism, and instead, putting the focus on earthly cares, and heart-felt needs, as though that is what matters to God the most. But Scripture makes it clear, that believers must love their neighbor as themselves, and they must love the church, just as Christ loved the church, by giving his life for them. Therefore, loving the church is the orthodox focus for Christ’s church, and not incarnational ministry. The missional movement is more consistent with Rick Warren’s world wide “Purpose Driven Emerging Church movement” than the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Ezekiel 13

3    Thus says the Lord GOD: “Woe to the foolish prophets, who follow their own spirit and have seen nothing!
4    O Israel, your prophets are like foxes in the deserts.
5    You have not gone up into the gaps to build a wall for the house of Israel to stand in battle on the day of the LORD.
6    They have envisioned futility and false divination, saying, ‘Thus says the LORD!’ But the LORD has not sent them; yet they hope that the word may be confirmed.
7    Have you not seen a futile vision, and have you not spoken false divination? You say, ‘The LORD says,’ but I have not spoken.”
8    Therefore thus says the Lord GOD: “Because you have spoken nonsense and envisioned lies, therefore I am indeed against you,” says the Lord GOD.
9    “My hand will be against the prophets who envision futility and who divine lies; they shall not be in the assembly of My people, nor be written in the record of the house of Israel, nor shall they enter into the land of Israel. Then you shall know that I am the Lord GOD.
10    “Because, indeed, because they have seduced My people, saying, ‘Peace!’ when there is no peace — and one builds a wall, and they plaster it with untempered mortar —
11    say to those who plaster it with untempered mortar, that it will fall. There will be flooding rain, and you, O great hailstones, shall fall; and a stormy wind shall tear it down.
12    Surely, when the wall has fallen, will it not be said to you, ‘Where is the mortar with which you plastered it?’ ”
13    Therefore thus says the Lord GOD: “I will cause a stormy wind to break forth in My fury; and there shall be a flooding rain in My anger, and great hailstones in fury to consume it.
14    So I will break down the wall you have plastered with untempered mortar, and bring it down to the ground, so that its foundation will be uncovered; it will fall, and you shall be consumed in the midst of it. Then you shall know that I am the LORD.

Luke 12

16    And he spake a parable unto them, saying, The ground of a certain rich man brought forth plentifully:
17    And he thought within himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits?
18    And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods.
19    And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry.
20    But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided?
21    So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.

Matthew 7

21    Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.
22    Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
23    And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
24    Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:
25    And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.
26    And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:
27    And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.

Luke 12

42    And the Lord said, Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his lord shall make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of meat in due season?
43    Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing.
44    Of a truth I say unto you, that he will make him ruler over all that he hath.
45    But and if that servant say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming; and shall begin to beat the menservants and maidens, and to eat and drink, and to be drunken;
46    The lord of that servant will come in a day when he looketh not for him, and at an hour when he is not aware, and will cut him in sunder, and will appoint him his portion with the unbelievers.
47    And that servant, which knew his lord’s will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes.
48    But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more.

1Corinthians 3

9    For we are labourers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building.
10    According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon.
11    For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.
12    Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble;
13    Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is.
14    If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward.
15    If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.
16    Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?
17    If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.
18    Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise.
19    For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, He taketh the wise in their own craftiness.
20    And again, The Lord knoweth the thoughts of the wise, that they are vain.

Test All Things Pt. 3 – Wimpy Christians & The Culture War

robert_jeffress_a

OneNewsNow.Com

A respected Southern Baptist pastor and author says “wimpy” pastors and laypersons are the reason Christians are losing the culture war.

Why are many Christian leaders silent when religious freedom comes under attack? That question was raised Tuesday evening by Fox News Channel’s Bill O’Reilly and posed to Dr. Robert Jeffress, pastor of First Baptist Church Dallas and author of How Can I Know: Answers to Life’s 7 Most Important Questions.

Jeffress, Rev. Robert (FBC Dallas)“I think one reason is a lot of Christian leaders have the wrong idea about Jesus,” Jeffress replied when asked the question. “They see Jesus as this little, wimpy guy who walked around plucking daisies and eating birdseed and saying nice things, but never doing anything controversial. The fact is, Jesus did confront his culture with truth — and he ended up being crucified because of it.”

The Dallas pastor chastised pastors who shy away from controversy.

“Wimpy pastors produce wimpy Christians — and that is why we are losing this culture war,” he emphasized.

These are indeed some bold, and hard hitting, comments. But are they true? Are Christians wimps for not participating in the culture war? Has Christ called his church to go to war with the culture? Did Jesus go to war with the culture?

First, to set the record straight, there are many pastors going to war with the culture, and are even willing to be led in the culture war by false teachers, such as, the historical revisionist, David Barton, Glenn Beck, the Mormon, Roman Catholics, and even “Word of Faith” & New Apostolic Reformation” heretics. So it wouldn’t be accurate to claim that pastors are not engaged in the culture war. Mr. Jeffress might not like the amount of people involved, but he should be realistic in his observation, because the majority of Western society holds to a secular world-view; thus out numbering those who still hold to traditional Christian morality.

Nevertheless, Mr. Jeffress’ statements should be challenged.

Did Jesus, in fact, go to war with his culture, by trying to compel the Jews to keep the Old Covenant law? It is true that he rightly accused the Jews, and even the leaders, by telling them that none of them keeps the law, and that they even nullify the law by replacing it with their own traditions (John 7-19, Matthew 15:3-9). But was it the law that Jesus was telling the people to obey? Jesus did not command the Jews to do a better job at keeping the law. Instead, he told them to do “the work of God”, which is to “believe in Him whom He [God] sent… Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me has everlasting life. I am the bread of life” (John 6:29-48). That was Jesus’ messages, and that is what he confronted his culture with, saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel” (Mark 1:15). Nowhere can it be found in the gospel, or even the epistles, where Jesus is commanding the people to do better at keeping the law. Instead, he shows the people their lost and sinful state, by showing them how they have always broken the law, and cannot keep the law, because of their sinful heart. This was made evident when he said “For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled. Whoever therefore breaks one of the least of these commandments, and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I say to you, that unless your righteousness exceeds the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven. You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not murder, and whoever murders will be in danger of the judgment.’ But I say to you that whoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment. And whoever says to his brother, ‘Raca!’ shall be in danger of the council. But whoever says, ‘You fool!’ shall be in danger of hell fire. You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell” (Matthew 5:18-30). Sinful man, even orthodox Jews, cannot live up to this standard “Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God” (Romans 8:7-8). That is why Jesus said “You must be born again”, because “if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new” (John 3:7, 2Corinthians 5:17).

Did Jesus tell his Apostles to fight a culture war, when he commissioned them after his resurrection? No, instead, he told them to “go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you” (Matthew 19:20). None of Jesus’ commands to his disciples had to do with fighting for control of the world’s culture. Instead, his commands were centered on salvation from sin, and from a world that is mark for destruction, and that is what the Apostles preached, saying “Truly, these times of ignorance God overlooked, but now commands all men everywhere to repent, because He has appointed a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has ordained. He has given assurance of this to all by raising Him from the dead”, and “believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved” (Acts 30:31, Acts 16:31).

Is Christ’s church engaged in war of any kind? Yes, the church is, in fact, engaged in, and called to a war. But it is not a war against the culture, because “though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh”, and the war for the culture is a war against people, for control of a nation, which is not what Christ commanded the church to do (2Corinthians 10:3). Yet, “from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force” (Matthew 11:12). Christ church, therefore, is engaged in a spiritual war “against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places” (Ephesians 6:10). These opposing forces wage war on the truth, which the church is called to contend earnestly for, by refuting the heresies of false teachers. This war is fought by abiding in the truth, and by “casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ” (2Corinthians 10:5, Ephesians 6:14-18, Jude 1:3-4).

Many false teachers fight against the truth, by teaching the church, and the world, to do things in Christ’s name that Jesus never commanded, and the church must expose their lies, and “mark those who cause divisions and offenses, contrary to the doctrine which they’ve learned, and avoid them. For those who are such do not serve our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly, and by smooth words and flattering speech deceive the hearts of the simple” (Romans 16:17-18). “These are grumblers, complainers, walking according to their own lusts; and they mouth great swelling words, flattering people to gain advantage”, but Christ church must “remember the words which were spoken before by the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ: how they told you that there would be mockers in the last time who would walk according to their own ungodly lusts. These are sensual persons, who cause divisions, not having the Spirit (Jude 1:16-19). Jesus also gave this warning when he told his disciples to “enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it. Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Therefore by their fruits you will know them” (Matthew 7:13-20).

Therefore, Christ has called his church to engaged in a war, but it is not a war for the culture, which is doomed, according to Scripture (Acts 17:30-30, 1John 2:15-17). Instead, the church is engaged in a war for the truth of who the true God is, and for the truth of the true gospel of salvation, because many false prophets are in the world, and they are leading the world to obey false gods, false Christs, and false gospel (1John 4:1-6, 1John 5:19-21). Some are even telling the church that Jesus wants them to take charge of the culture through civil law, or through bringing about world peace in his name, even though Christ has already said “do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword. For I have come to ‘set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law’; and ‘a man’s enemies will be those of his own household.'” (Matthew 10:34-36). The hatred, and lack of peace, is directly linked with the world’s hatred of Christ, “because he testified of it that its works are evil”, and the church must do the same, through the power of the Holy Spirit (John 7:7, John 16:8).

Those who are not willing to follow Christ’s commands to engage in this spiritual warfare are fearful. This is because they fear sinful man more than God, who is able to kill, and send those who disobeyed him to Hell, and the “Lake of Fire” (Matthew 10:29, Revelation 21:7-8). Those are the true wimpy Christians, who will not inherit the kingdom of Heaven, just as those who have told lies in Christ name (Revelation 21:7-8). That is why the Scriptures says “…all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone…” (Revelation 21:8). “These are spots in your love feasts, while they feast with you without fear, serving only themselves. They are clouds without water, carried about by the winds; late autumn trees without fruit, twice dead, pulled up by the roots; raging waves of the sea, foaming up their own shame; wandering stars for whom is reserved the blackness of darkness forever” (Jude 1:12-13). To take the Lord’s name in vain, by telling people that God wants them to do certain things that he never told them, is not a small matter, “for the LORD will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain” (Exodus 20:7).

Christians who fight in a war, who have not been commanded by God to do so, are fooled into waring against the very people that Christ has commanded them to preach the gospel to, so that they will repent, believe the gospel, and be saved, from their sins, and from this evil world. Believers are called to “set their minds on things above, not on things on the earth”, because “no one engaged in warfare entangles himself with the affairs of this life, that he may please him who enlisted him as a soldier” (Colossians 3:2, 2Timothy 2:4). The church’s war is centered upon salvation, and upon making disciples. Christ does not burden his people with the hopeless cares of this world, that is ruled over by Satan, who is “the god of this world” (2Crointhians 4:4, John 16:11, Revelation 12:12). Instead, he says “I will put on you no other burden. But hold fast what you have till I come. And he who overcomes, and keeps My works until the end, to him I will give power over the nations. ‘ He shall rule them with a rod of iron; They shall be dashed to pieces like the potter’s vessels’, as I also have received from My Father; and I will give him the morning star. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.” (Revelation 2:24-29).

Revelation 22

12    And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.
13    I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.
14    Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.
15    For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.
16    I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star.
17    And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.
18    For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book:
19    And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.
20    He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus.
21    The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.

War on Consciousness Pt. 26 – The Collective Salvation of the Superior Group

Wittenberg, NationalsynodeWorldview Weekend Radio

On today’s program Brannon discusses the dangers of collective salvation, group consensus, existentialism and how the false church in Nazi Germany embraced these ideas and how they are being embraced again by a rising, global, false church. Martin Heidegger was the First Nazi Rector of a German University. Martin Heidegger was influenced by Søren Kierkegaard and Kierkegaard also influenced the false church with his belief in subjective truth. Heidegger promoted deconstructionism in Germany and when he joined the Nazi party he aided the Nazi party in teaching the idea of community and collective salvation to the false church in Germany. Heidegger helped to indoctrinate the church in both existentialism and the idea of collectivism, group consensus, and denial of the value and worth of the individual. These philosophies helped to lay the foundation for the Nazi holocaust. How have postmodernism, existentialism, and collective salvation come into the modern church today? What serious consequences could result in today’s world from these dangerous philosophies? How do the New Religious Right and Religious Left embrace group consensus and collective salvation albeit in different forms?

To listen to the program, click on the link entitled “The Collective Salvation of the Superior Group“.

Another influence from the grave is the writings of Jane Lead. Particularly her 1679 prophecy of the “Philadelphian Church“, which has been adopted, in part, by the New Apostolic Reformation, the Latter Rain Movement, the Vineyard Movement, and IHOP. The key character traits of these two movements is the emphasis on the importance of collectivism through, around-the-clock, group prayer meetings for the purpose of coming under the control of the Holy Spirit, whom, they claim, desires to use them to perform signs and wonders on a scale so great that it would convert the world to Jesus Christ, and also cause Christ to return to the earth through their elite church, which would also become gods, and would be so powerful that the earth would be restored by the power of this elite church.

This experienced-based, false church, as seen with IHOP, has no tolerance for sound doctrine, and instead, desires to know God through the senses, apart from Scripture, and seeks after signs and wonders, because the gospel of Christ isn’t enough for them, and adherents to the written word of God are even seen as those who follow dead religion. This perspective automatically causes this elite church to see the true church, that desires to follow the God of the Bible, rather than the strange doctrines, and practices, derived from experiences , as false, dead, and as salt that has lost its savor. Nevertheless, it is the wicked generation that seeks after a sign, and refuses to seek, and obey, the written word of God.

Matthew 16

1    The Pharisees also with the Sadducees came, and tempting desired him that he would shew them a sign from heaven.
2    He answered and said unto them, When it is evening, ye say, It will be fair weather: for the sky is red.
3    And in the morning, It will be foul weather to day: for the sky is red and lowring. O ye hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky; but can ye not discern the signs of the times?
4    A wicked and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given unto it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas. And he left them, and departed.

Psalm 119

1    Blessed are the undefiled in the way, who walk in the law of the LORD.
2    Blessed are they that keep his testimonies, and that seek him with the whole heart.
3    They also do no iniquity: they walk in his ways.

Psalm 1

1    Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.
2    But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.
3    And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.
4    The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away.
5    Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.
6    For the LORD knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish.

What is required of the church during this time of promoting the fallacy of group consensus, and collective salvation, is to abide in Christ, which means we must study God’s word, meditate on it day and night, and most of all, obey it, even in the face of persecution and death (John 15:3-5, Psalm 1:1-3, Psalm 119:1-8). Just as Noah was the only one preaching, and standing up for the truth, in the midst of his wicked generation, before the flood came, and destroyed the old, proud, world, with its great numbers , who were sure of their collective movement of lawlessness, so the church of Jesus Christ must stand in this evil day, against the principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places, by standing up for the truth of who God is, and the truth of the gospel (Ephesians 6:10-13). This is done by preaching the gospel to the lost, making disciples of Jesus Christ, teaching them to obey everything that he has commanded those who follow him, and by contending earnestly for the faith, once delivered to the saints, by casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ (Matthew 28:19-20, Jude 1:3-4, 2Corinthians 10:4-5). Christ’s command to his church is to put on the whole armor of God, so that they are able to stand for the truth in the midst of this wicked generation (Ephesians 6:10-18, 1Peter 1:8-20).

The church must be willing to stand for the true God, and the gospel, when it is vastly out numbered (Matthew 10:16-40, Matthew 24:9-13). It must be willing to stand up, by the grace of God, under persecution. Christ church must be willing to be rejected by this sinful world, and separated themselves from the false prophets who are promoted by the mainstream Christian media (Luke 6:26, Matthew 5:10-16). It must separate itself from the ecumenical practices of the New Religious Right (2Corinthians 6:14-18, 1John 2:3-6, 1John 5:18-21).

The power of God in the church is its witness of the gospel, through the power of the Holy Spirit, which they have been given in their mortal bodies, to show that it is not by might, nor by power, but by the power of the Holy Spirit that they are able to stand firm until Christ returns (Romans 1:16-17, Ephesians 3:14-21, Corinthians 4:5-7, Zechariah 4:1-6, Hebrews 10:35-38).

The church began its mission of gospel proclamation through signs, and wonders, confirming their witness to be from God (Mark 16:17-20, Hebrews 2:3-4). The church has no more need for signs, and wonders, now that the fullness of their faith has been revealed by the written word of God (1Corinthians 13:8-13, James 1:21-25, 2Timothy 3:14-17). Now they must shine as lights in these last hours by their faith, through preaching the gospel, and through the sign of boldness in martyrdom (Daniel 12:3, Daniel 12:7-10, 2Timothy 4:1-5, Revelation 12:10-12). Signs, and wonders, are no longer needed by the true church to affirm their righteousness to the collective, superior group, because they are the just, who live by faith in God’s written word, which promised them resurrection to eternal life, when Christ returns, and judges this world in righteousness (2Thessalonians 1:3-12, 1Thessalonians 4:13-18, Isaiah chp. 26).