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Reformed. Christianity. Evangelism. Modern Culture.
A friend of mine posted these basic doctrine questions on Facebook and I thought they are interesting. Try and see how many you can answer and then scroll to the bottom of the page for the answers:
Questions About God and Christ (Answer True or False)
1. Jesus was God, but only appeared to be human.
2. Jesus was the first of all God’s created beings.
3. Jesus had a human body and divine soul.
4. In the Old Testament, God was known as the Father, in the New Testament, as the Son, and after Pentecost, as the Holy Spirit.
5. Mary is the mother of God.
6. God chooses people because he knows in advance they will choose him. …Read More!
Why do so-called Christians forsake the pure wine of Gospel joy for the adulterated poison which the whore of the world smilingly holds out to them in her golden chalice? Is it because the message of the Gospel, which once sparkled in the preached Word, and furnished comfort to mourners, has now gone stale? Or has that stream of spiritual joy which has run through the lives of saints for so many generations, without mingling with the world’s polluted pleasures, at last fallen into them and lost its divine nature? No, the Gospel stays the same. . . and the joy it brings is as refreshing and restoring as it has always been. It will be lovely as long as God and Christ continue to be life, for it flows and is fed from their heart.
The problem is not in the Scripture; it lies in those who say they hold to it. Those who insist that they obey this Gospel are not like holy men and women of earlier times. The world has grown callous, and men’s priorities and affections have chilled and become cold. Our palate is no longer chaste; it no longer prefers the heavenly foods served in the Gospel. The cheer is as lively as ever but the guests are as deadened by constant contact with the world. We have grown debauched in our judgments and corrupt in our principles; no wonder that our joys are carnal.
Error is a whore that lures the heart away from Christ and His spiritual joys. Once the mind is confused by error and begins to malign the truth, it affects the heart, poisoning it with carnal joys. Here, then, is the root of the misery of our times. ..Read More!
1. The Son of God, the Second member of the Trinity, in the Incarnation, stopped being God for a time and became man for a time.2. The Son of God took on the form of a man, but was not really a man.3. The Son of God, the Second member of the Trinity, laid aside some of His attributes for a time and became man for a time.4. Jesus was simply a common man when He was born and was later glorified by the Father and adopted as God.5. In Christ there two persons: a human person and a Divine Person. …Read More!
I think this will come in handy for any one trying to find out more on Word of Faith movement. I just met some one who is attending a church where the pastor teaches and believes in the movement. This excerpt and the bible verses can be a good primer:
Word of Faith teaching is decidedly unbiblical. It is not a denomination and does not have a formal organization or hierarchy. Instead, it is a movement that is heavily influenced by a number of high-profile pastors and teachers such as Kenneth Hagin, Benny Hinn, Kenneth Copeland, Paul and Jan Crouch, and Fred Price.
The Word of Faith movement grew out of the Pentecostal movement in the late 20th century. Its founder was E. W. Kenyon, who studied the metaphysical New Thought teachings of Phineas Quimby. Mind science (where “name it and claim it” originated) was combined with Pentecostalism, resulting in a peculiar mix of orthodox Christianity and mysticism. Kenneth Hagin, in turn, studied under E. W. Kenyon and made the Word of Faith movement what it is today. Although individual teachings range from completely heretical to completely ridiculous, what follows is the basic theology most Word of Faith teachers align themselves with.
At the heart of the Word of Faith movement is the belief in the “force of faith.” It is believed words can be used to manipulate the faith-force, and thus actually create what they believe Scripture promises (health and wealth). Laws supposedly governing the faith-force are said to operate independently of God’s sovereign will and that God Himself is subject to these laws. This is nothing short of idolatry, turning our faith—and by extension ourselves—into god. …Read More!
We all know how IT guys think they are gods (insert smiley face here) but well here is one who is taking things literally and actually getting away with it:
A man claiming to be Jesus is gaining followers and causing concern among cult experts in Australia.
Former IT specialist Alan John Miller, or AJ as he prefers to be known, runs a religious movement known as the Divine Truth from his home near the small town of Kingaroy in the state of Queensland.
Mr Miller claims that not only is he Christ, but his partner, Australian Mary Luck, is in fact Mary Magdalene, who according to the Bible was present at the crucifixion.
He told Sky News: “I have very clear memories of the crucifixion, but it wasn’t as harrowing for me as it was for others like Mary who was present.
“When you are one with God you are not in a state of fear, and you have quite good control over your body’s sensations and the level of pain that you absorb from your body.”
Mr Miller holds seminars near his home and also travels around the world teaching people how to have a personal relationship with God, often by delving deep into their emotions.
Dozens of his followers are understood to have bought properties in the area to be closer to him.
After his crucifixion the Australian claims he entered the spirit world where he met Plato, Socrates, popes and presidents.
Now, I didn’t see that coming. Jesus tucked away in the sunny out backs of Australia!
G’day, mates! Meet me in Kingaroy! Without further ado I am off to the land down under!
I always knew Oz was God’s own country – how dare you judge me when I now have confirmation from some one from IT? 😉
Steven Furtick is the poster child of a concept called “audacious faith”. What is this new fad all about? And most important of all what theological depth does it have? Is it a scriptural concept? Pastor Bjoern E. Meinhardt took some time to review Furtick’s ‘five star’ book Sun Stand Still and found very interesting conclusions…
Recently, somebody brought the book Sun Stand Still (the title is a reference to Joshua 10) by Stephen Furtick to my attention. I looked it up on Amazon.com and saw more than 100 five-star ratings. I was curious. I wanted to read it for myself. To say the very least, I was disappointed. Furtick’s concept of “audacious faith” is lacking theological depths and orthodox Christian teachings. It is pop-theology pure. In short, it preaches what many people’s itching ears want to hear to make them feel good about themselves in a success-oriented world.
Furtick claims, a theology that does not activate one’s audacious faith is “heresy” (see page 7). Saying that all other theology is heresy is audacious in and by itself. Even more so since the entire book breathes the heresy of Semi-Pelagianism: salvation is not built on the cross of Christ, but it becomes possible through our (human) efforts and doing, which become visible and tangible in wealth, success, and recognition.
Faith understood this way is nothing more than a tool for self-serving fulfillment dreams based on a prayer of entitlement, which can be summarized as follows: ‘I believe, therefore I deserve all these (good) things. All I have to do is get – what Furtick calls – my “Page-23-vision” right, and bring it before god’ (spelled so on purpose). This, however, is not audacious faith in a great God. Rather, this is confidence in my own achievements. God is only seen as the great sugar-daddy who can’t say no
It is a good thing to go to church with the bible firmly tucked under your arm. It’s also a good thing to watch Christian television with an open bible planted firmly under your nose. But some times having a bible with you is not all that the discerning listener needs. False teachers have invented a new smart technique that beats the lazy eyed listener…its the “heresy two step” technique:
The Heresy Two-step starts with two feet on the text. The allusion must be given that the text is going to be taught on. Then a sliding step backwards is taken into an abstraction. You move from the text to an idea about the text or to a word in the text. Once the text is abstracted and a general principle or something along these lines is made. You can now wiggle around and go in any direction you want. You can make the text say whatever you want. Instead of teaching the text you are pontificating on this abstraction which was drawn from the text.
For some of us who are less experienced I hope this explanation is helpful in discerning false teachers, but it would seem to act as a measure for anyone who preaches/teaches. One needs to understand that exegesis and hermeneutics do have a critical role in preaching and understanding what the text says. …Read More!
Jim Bublitz takes no prisoners as he writes this blistering
but deeply insightful article- Full Link here
That sounds reasonable, doesn’t it? I mean, after all -who would honestly say that they’ve never sinned? Probably nobody. And since unbelievers already feel guilty enough over they’re past mistakes, then it goes without saying that we should spend the vast majority of our time preaching a positive message of Good News to them, rather than dwelling on the negatives. In this post, we’ll actually go inside of a prison and test-out this theory on convicted felons. If anybody ought to understand their own guilt and sinfulness, it would be real/live rapists, murders, and thieves, right?
Warning: Understanding the things in this video could challenge your entire view of ‘relevance’ in evangelism.
I’ve mentioned before my experiences in the church that I used to attend which, over time, transitioned into a model based on what is prescribed by Bill Hybels and Rick Warren. If I were to pick out one key reason why I left that church when I did, this would have been it. I knew there was something wrong when a year of time passes with very little mention of sin. Oh sure, bad habits were talked about Read More
It is said that many regularly occupy church pews, fill church rolls, and are intellectually acquainted with the facts of the gospel but never strike one blow for Christ. They seem to be at peace with his enemies. They have no quarrel with sin and, apart from a few sentimental expressions about Christ, there is no biblical evidence that they have experienced anything of the power of the gospel in their lives. Superficially called by the oxymoron ‘carnal christians’ but why are they called so when the bible never uses such a term? To believe in carnal christianity (sic) you have to force your self to make 9 serious errors in doctrine:
This ‘carnal Christian’ doctrine depends upon a wrong interpretation and application of 1 Corinthians 3:1-4, ‘And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ… are ye not carnal?’ To understand the true meaning of these words it should be remembered that 1 Corinthians is not primarily a doctrinal epistle…
In endeavoring to understand how Paul thinks of those he addresses in 1 Corinthians 3 we must bear in mind the designation he gives to them in chapter 1. He says they are ‘sanctified in Christ Jesus’, they are recipients of ‘the grace of God’, enriched by Christ ‘in all utterance, and in all knowledge’ (1:2-5). They are rebuked in chapter 3, not for failing to attain to privileges which some Christians attain to, but for acting, despite their privileges, like babes and like the unregenerate in one area of their lives.
This is very different from saying that the Apostle here recognizes the existence of a distinct group of Christians who can be called ‘carnal’.
The spiritual may be but babes in grace and babes in knowledge. Their faith may be weak. Their love may be in its early bud, their spiritual senses may be but little exercised, their faults may be many; but if ‘the root of the matter’ is in them and if they have passed from death unto life — passed out of the region of nature into that which is beyond nature — Paul puts them in another class. They are all spiritual men although in some aspects of their behavior they may temporarily fail to appear as such.
Certainly these Christians at Corinth were imperfectly sanctified, as indeed are all Christians to a greater or lesser degree. But Paul is not saying that they were characterized by carnality in every area of their lives… Read More!
Deception has been one of the oldest games since Eve fell foul in the garden of Eden. The most immediate reaction is usually why didn’t God step in at that moment and in one blaze of purple and blue smoking lightning zap the fruit and serpent into an ashen crisp or vapour? Why didn’t God realize that the serpent would be slithering his way into the garden sooner or later? Then how about in the modern day church, why are there heretics with wacky theology thriving in pulpits and on Christian television? Why do they seem to have larger followings, draw higher ratings and yet they seem to be delving in utter rank deception? Where is God when another false teacher or prophet panders his way through the pockets of innocent people? Well, thanks for asking. I came a cross an excerpt from A.W Pink that may perchance shed some light on what scripture says: Read More
“I Finally Got Sent A Hillsong Video That Proves They Preach The Gospel . . . NOT!!” says Cameron Buettel a blogger who set up an interesting challenge. This is the what he found…
To his credit Troy did take up my challenge that no one else has responded to. He went looking for a solid example of someone from Hillsong church preaching the Gospel. I had burdened Troy with the responsibility of substantiating his claim that:
I can assure you that I’ve been to Hillsong quite a few times and have heard the gospel accurately preached. Yes, including the mention of sin and the cross. But There’s More
Its one thing to be a preacher it’s another thing to bring oratorical skills to the pulpit and blend it with perfectly choreographed gimmicks to bring hundreds to their feet beckoning for more stories. Doesn’t it just amuse you when a preacher walks to the pulpit with a Bible and then decides to close it as he begins the sermon? My favourite ones are those “anointed coat” swinging show men who blow into microphones and keep repeating over and over, “I feel the anointing of God is here”. But I must say the deadliest are those slick ones who slide past you and mesmerise you to the point that you don’t even notice that they sneaked into the pulpit without a Bible (not even a pocket Message Bible). And as you try to figure where the sermon is going to come from…BANG! He has hit you between the eyes with a “holy ghost” stunner and you are writhing under your seat with your tie choking the living day lights out of you. Read More
An attempt to clear up some of the misunderstandings about Calvinism. This is not meant to be a detailed doctrinal defense of Calvinism’s Doctrines Of Grace.
1) Calvinism and Hyper-Calvinism are poles apart. The terms are not to be used synonymously. A Hyper-Calvinist is not just a zealous Calvinist. We both consider each other to be “mongrel” Calvinists. No man will actually call himself a Hyper-Calvinist.
2) Yes Calvinists are split into several factions. But then so are many such doctrinal schools e.g. Dispensationalism, Church Government, Worship – do we sing only the Psalms or use hymns? Which hymns? Do we use music? Which music? Which set of texts do we base our Bible translation on? Is it the Textus Receptus that is important or the (KJV) AV? or both? etc.
3) The term free will needs to be defined to avoid confusion. Calvinists will either affirm it or deny it, depending on what they think you mean. This sometimes leads to charges of contradictions. Consult the standard Calvinist Confessions e.g. the Westminster Confession of Faith Chapter 9 for a defining of terms. But There’s More
Just when evangelicalism is reeling with main stream media’s concern that the church is fostering a generation of “fake Christian” teens, now we have another term -Hipster Christianity. According to Christianity Today:
The latest incarnation of a decades-long collision of “cool” and “Christianity,” hipster Christianity is in large part a rebellion against the very subculture that birthed it. It’s a rebellion against old-school evangelicalism and its fuddy-duddy legalism, apathy about the arts, and pitiful lack of concern for social justice. It’s also a rebellion against George W. Bush—style Christianity: American flags in churches, the Ten Commandments in courtrooms, and evangelical leaders who get too involved in conservative politics, such as James Dobson and Jerry Falwell. But There’s more
While it was once the breadbasket of southern Africa, it now produces only one-third of the grain it needs to feed its own population. In Zimbabwe one-third of all children are chronically malnourished, and 10 million people (out of a population of 13 million) live below the poverty line. The fortunes of the country for the last three decades seem to have been tied to the coat tails of once popular and charismatic President Mr Robert Mugabe. But is the tide changing now?
Mugabe has in the past struggled with undisclosed health problems but has always returned to public life looking spritely and healthy. However the past few months Mugabe’s health has deteriorated dramatically with pictures recently being broadcasted showing Mugabe unable to walk without the help of aides in a recent trip to Uganda. Some reports claimed Mugabe fell in full view of other dignitaries. But There’s More
On a lighter note we seem to be racing towards the second return of Jesus Christ. No I don’t have the date and year. Probably no body knows that bit, though the Mayans think they have that sorted . Their calender will end in 2012 and come December 2012 the Mayans will cheaply sell and give away all their belongings and head for the hills. Only to sheepishly re-buy them expensively in January 2013.
The rest of the world is still coming to terms with the devastation in Pakistan’s flood. (After BP shame facedly plugging a massive oil spill in Gulf of Mexico). With over 20 million homeless and over 1,600 dead- it is a challenge of similar proportion to that during the 1947 partition of the subcontinent into Hindu-dominated India and Muslim-majority Pakistan. Instead of pondering on these weighty issues, a young man in Japan has been serenading his one and only love- his pillow. But There’s More
Is there still any reverence for the Holy and sacred things of God these days? What ever happened to the good old sermons about sin, righteousness and judgement? They called some of these ‘fire and brimstone’ sermons and phased them out of most churches, radios and television. Have you ever listened to Jonathan Edwards’ sermon ‘Sinners in the hands of an angry God’? Not even so called christian broad casters feature such sermons any more. These sermons are deemed ‘volatile’ and dont draw ratings they say. But they make a fatal error as they gladly proclaim a new gospel. One that is billed as the best thing since sliced bread called Gospel lite -the health, wealth and prosperity gospel.
Flip to a typical modern christian church sermon broad cast and what do you see? A young man who should be a pastor struts around an arena with spandex and jiggles as he lays his closed bible on the Plexiglass pulpit that casts a silhouette against the laser lit giant screen behind him. It’s Sunday and the topic is self esteem and positive confession…for the fifty second time that year. ‘This is our year of destiny’ reads the banner that has always been flown year in and year out. New visitors and tourists stagger in awe as they trudge through the church programme.The message elates them and sure enough tickles their fancy enough to bring them back But There’s More
Anne Rice, the renowned American author of gothic, erotic, and religious-themed books has on her Face Book page un-liked Roman Catholicism and as it is Christianity. It’s yet to be seen if she will be de-baptised. A de-baptism is a mystic ceremony usually said to be carried out by symbolically drying up water off your fore head -with a blow drier. Thats not all, you can also get a certificate commemorating this dark slap stick mockery.
For those who care, and I understand if you don’t: Today I quit being a Christian. I’m out. I remain committed to Christ as always but not to being “Christian” or to being part of Christianity. It’s simply impossible for me to “belong” Read More
When talk show host Oprah Winfrey so much as spits on a book it immediately catches fire. The ashes can so much as sell for a lump sum that can earn you enough money for an early retirement. In 2006 an Australian Rhonda Byrne got much more than she bargained for when she wrote the New Age self help book, The Secret. Her book did not get spat on. No. The book got featured not once but twice on the Oprah Winfrey show and (wait for this) by the Spring of 2007 the book had sold almost 4 million copies, and the DVD had sold more than 2 million copies. Byrne was listed among Time Magazine’s list of 100 people who shaped the world in 2007.
Byrne writes, “Disease cannot live in a body that is in a healthy emotional state.” But be warned: “If you have a disease and you are focusing on it and talking to people about it, you are going to create more disease cells.” The tenet of the book is that an individual’s focused positive thinking can result in life-changing results such as increased wealth, health, happiness and more.
By Denise Mala, Full article Here.
Bay Area Fellowship, the largest church in Corpus Christi, is giving away flat-screen televisions, skateboards, Fender guitars, furniture and 15 cars — yes, cars — at its Easter services.
And even those who don’t win big will walk away with something. The church has gathered donations for 15,000 gift bags, each with about $300 worth of free goods and services.
“We’re going to give some stuff away and say, ‘Imagine how great heaven is going to be if you feel that excited about a car,’ ” lead Pastor Bil Cornelius said. “It’s completely free — all you have to do is receive him.”
He hopes the prizes will help Bay Area lure some people Read More