Chris interviews a special guest on the program today, a university student from Rwanda named Andrew Mark. Andrew was just six years old when the Rwanda Genocide took place in 1994 and now shares insights into the politics and theology that drove this terrible tragedy. What was the role of the Roman Catholic Church? Did Catholic missionaries sow seeds of hatred among the people, and compel some of them to commit mass murder?
The Reformed Calvinist teacher, and internationally known author, and speaker, John Piper, has shown himself to have Roman Catholic tendencies. Piper is a former student of Fuller Theological Seminary, which has trained a number of emerging church leaders, such as Rick Warren, Tony Jones, and Rob Bell. The seminaries’ faculty has consisted of heretical teachers, such as it’s former president, C. Peter Wagner, of the New Apostolic Reformation, John Wimber, of the Vineyard Movement, and the universalist, Thomas Talbott. John Piper has also attended the University of Munich, which was known for being under the control of the Jesuit order, during the 16th, 17th, and 18th centuries, because it is one of their many tools during the Counter Reformation. The University of Munich is also the same college that the former pope, Benedict XVI, attended.
John Piper has shown his partiality toward Roman Catholic heretics, such as the mystic Bernard of Clairvaux, who was a major contributor to building the virgin Mary cult of Roman Catholicism, by listing Clairaux as a lover of God, and one of the most God-besotted people in the world. See Piper’s quote below:
Or take hymns! How unabashedly hedonistic they are! Hymns are the voices of the church’s lovers, and lovers are the least duty-oriented and most God-besotted people in the world.
Jesus, Thou joy of loving hearts
Thou fount of life, Thou light of men
From the best bliss that earth imparts
We turn unfilled to Thee again.
Bernard of Clairvaux
The quote above is taken from Piper’s book on “Christian Hedonism”, which is a perversion of both God, and the gospel. One of the origins for Piper’s deceptive philosophy of hedonism is, according to John Piper, the Roman Catholic heretic, Blaise Pascal.
“During my first quarter in seminary, I was introduced to the argument for Christian Hedonism and one of its great exponents, Blaise Pascal. He wrote: ‘All men seek happiness. This is without exception. Whatever different means they employ, they all tend to this end. … The will never takes the least step but to this object. This is the motive of every action of every man, even of those who hand themselves.’ This statement so fit with my own deep longings, and all that I had ever seen in others, that I accepted it and have never found any reason to doubt it. … Jonathan Edwards tied it [Pascal’s statement] to the Word of Christ: ‘Jesus knew that all mankind were in the pursuit of happiness. He has directed them in the true way to it, and He tells them what they must become in order to be blessed and happy’” (Desiring God, location 198, 212, 3761).
The Roman Catholic Blaise Pascal was a brilliant mathematician but he was also a theological heretic and a deeply confused man, spiritually. Though he attacked some aspects of Romanism, he accepted the papacy, the mass, the saints, Mariolatry, and veneration of relics. He was deeply influenced by the blind mysticism of Jansenism and he spent a lot of time in the convent where his sister was a nun and where Catholic mysticism was practiced.
In late 2011, Piper has also taught a form of Roman Catholic Mysticism, known as Lectico Devina Lite on his website, and removed it after a backlash of controversy.
Update: Formerly I listed Lectio Divina as a third system for prayer. I’ve since removed it for the confusion it has caused. We do not endorse contemplative spirituality. The main point I’d like to recommend is using the text of Scripture as an organizer for our prayers — prayers that are exegetically faithful and gospel rich. I’m sorry for introducing the category.
The former pope Benedict is also in favor of practicing Lectico Devina as stated below:
John Piper also talks as though he believes that Roman Catholicism is part of Christ’s church, while also teaching that the pope undermines the faith of his followers. He does this by calling the pope one of the teachers of the church.
Nevertheless, God’s mercy is not a warrant to neglect or deny precious truths, especially those that are at the heart of how we get right with God. And the teachers of the church (notably the Pope) will be held more responsible than others for teaching what is fully biblical.
Thus, any church whose teaching rejects the imputation of the righteousness of Christ as an essential ground for our justification would be a church whose error is so close to the heart of the gospel as to be involved in undermining the faith of its members.
Piper has also made a public prayer on Twitter for the next pope, as though God might use the office of this age old enemy of Christ, the gospel, and the church.
O Lord of truth and mercy, put in place a Pope most willing to reform the Catholic Church in accord with your most holy word.
What should believers do about people like John Piper, who causes divisions, and offenses concerning the doctrine of Christ, and the gospel?
They must remember that a bad tree cannot bear good fruit.
15 “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves.
16 You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles?
17 Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit.
18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit.
19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.
20 Therefore by their fruits you will know them.
They must mark, and avoid them.
17 Now I urge you, brethren, note those who cause divisions and offenses, contrary to the doctrine which you learned, and avoid them.
18 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.
19 For your obedience has become known to all. Therefore I am glad on your behalf; but I want you to be wise in what is good, and simple concerning evil.
They must let these kind of people be accursed.
6 I marvel that you are turning away so soon from Him who called you in the grace of Christ, to a different gospel,
7 which is not another; but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ.
8 But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed.
9 As we have said before, so now I say again, if anyone preaches any other gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed.
And they must not take delight in them, nor promote them.
8 Look to yourselves, that we do not lose those things we worked for, but that we may receive a full reward
.9 Whoever transgresses and does not abide in the doctrine of Christ does not have God. He who abides in the doctrine of Christ has both the Father and the Son.
10 If anyone comes to you and does not bring this doctrine, do not receive him into your house nor greet him;
11 for he who greets him shares in his evil deeds.
21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven.
22 Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’
23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’