Robert Morris: God Needs Us to Pray So He Can Heal the Land

Truth - falseLiberal professor Warren Throckmorton regularly uses his blog over at Patheos to discredit those he disagrees with, including charismatics — and he often gets it right, as he did in this piece where he addresses “The Awakening” that was held at Gateway Church on September 22.  The founder and senior pastor of Gateway is Word of Faith/prosperity preacher Robert Morris. Throckmorton provides a video and transcript of Morris’ welcoming attendees to the event.  Also mentioned in the piece is high-profile pastor Tony Evans of Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship.   Here’s what he says about the misuse of 2 Chronicles 7:14 by two prominent pastors who should have a clear understanding of what Scripture teaches:

As Tony Evans did after him, Robert Morris recited the incantation to get God to change his mind (2 Chronicles 7:14):

If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.

Here I will repeat what I wrote about Tony Evans’ misuse of 2 Chronicles 7:14:

I have never understood why people mistake this as a promise to America.  American citizens are not His people called by God’s name. This verse is not addressed to Americans. This verse is the second half of a sentence started in verse 13 and concerns the dedication of the Jewish temple led by King Solomon. …

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Hebrew Roots Heresies

Elliott Nesch of Holy Bible Prophecy examines the Hebrew Roots movement.  The primary heresy, says Nesch is that in Hebrew Roots beliefs, Christians must keep the Torah.

torahBecause of the many heresies of modern Christianity today, many believers have fled from the apostate denominations only to find themselves ensnared in Hebrew Roots heresies. What is the Hebrew Roots movement? According to House of David Fellowship:

Hebrew Roots is a movement emerging around the world that advocates returning to the understanding of the Scriptures, perspectives, and beliefs of first-century faith. We are removed from Protestant Christianity, Rabbinic Judaism, and Messianic Judaism because of core belief differences.

Indeed it is good to be removed from Protestant Christianity, Rabbinic Judaism, and Messianic Judaism because of doctrinal differences. But what are those differences? In the movement’s favor, the Hebraic Roots movement avoids pagan traditions such as Christmas and emphasizes fruits, good works and obedience. However, their zeal for the Torah and allegiance to Moses has caused them to usurp the supreme authority of Yeshua Hamaschiach (Jesus Christ) in the New Covenant. Is the Torah the foundation of Christianity? Did Yeshua teach His followers to observe the Mosaic Law? Is it sinful to transgress the Law of Moses? Are Christians obligated to keep the Sabbath, observe the Jewish Feasts and eat a Kosher diet?

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What do you think about all this Satan stuff?

It’s a fact of earthly life that when God opens the windows of heaven to bless us, the devil opens the doors of hell to blast us. When God begins moving, the devil fires up all his artillery. — Adrian Rogers

 Marsha West

Marsha West, General Editor CRN

According to a number of Bible scholars, Isaiah 14:12-15 tells the story of Lucifer, an archangel, who fell from God’s grace and became the devil.  Lucifer conspired to make his throne higher than the clouds (he contrived to dethrone God) at which time he was booted out of heaven.

Lucifer is Latin for “morning star” or “light-bearer.” (In 2 Peter 1:19 the “morning star rising in your hearts” is not a reference to Satan.) The way Isaiah describes him is a far cry from the way in which he’s viewed by our culture:

How you are fallen from heaven, O Day Star, son of Dawn! How you are cut down to the ground, you who laid the nations low! You said in your heart, ‘I will ascend to heaven; above the stars of God I will set my throne on high; I will sit on the mount of assembly in the far reaches of the north; I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.’ But you are brought down to Sheol, to the far reaches of the pit.

Many people have heard the story of Adam and Eve, the first man and woman God created.  All humanity is related to this pair.  Adam and Eve came into the world without a sin nature.  Moreover, they were created with a free will.  We learn from the book of Genesis that they made their home in the Garden of Eden. It was into that garden that Satan, often referred to as the wily serpent, came with evil intent.  He found Eve alone and by using lies and deceit convinced her to disregard God’s command to Adam “…you must not eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil for when you eat of it you shall surely die.” (Gen. 2:17) The serpent told Eve that God had withheld knowledge that would give humans hidden wisdom….and make them like God. So Eve threw caution to the wind, disregarded God’s warning, and took a bite out of the fruit.

The serpent was right that God withheld knowledge from them.  The moment she ate of the fruit her eyes were opened…and sin came into the world.  Wanting Adam along for the ride, Eve then offered the fruit to her husband and, without thinking twice, he took her suggestion and ate it.  Instantly, Adam and Eve went from being God-centered to being self-centered.

When God confronted them with what they had done, what did Adam do?  He laid the blame on his wife! “It’s her fault, not mine!” So, by Adam choosing to ignore God’s specific warning, he precipitated what we know of as the “Fall of Man.”

The couple soon learned the consequence of sin — death.  Until sin there was no death.  (2 Cor. 11:3) As a result of the Fall, all human beings are in bondage to sin….and the kingdom of Satan.

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Fox’s “Lucifer” Returns to Mock Christians, Biblical Story of Creation

According to News Busters:

luciferFox’s Lucifer has returned for a second season with its comic book version of Satan in the episode “Everything’s Coming Up Lucifer.” After last season’s cliffhanger that God’s wife/Lucifer’s mother escaped from Hell, Lucifer Morningstar (Tom Ellis) is on a mission to find her here on Earth, as he tells his therapist, Linda Martin (Rachael Harris). Lucifer explains the Creation to her and let’s just say it is a bit different from the Biblical one.

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Inspired Attacks Show Strength of Islamic State, Experts Say

According to Fred Lucas of The Daily Signal:

Terrorism word cloud

After the terrorist attacks this weekend, President Barack Obama acknowledged a link between the central Islamic State and lone bad actors, even as the administration has frequently drawn a distinction in the past.

National security experts believe terror attacks “inspired” by the radical groups are just as dangerous—potentially more so—than if ISIS draws up the plan of attack.

The independent bad actors are clearly “executing the will of the organization,” said Bill Roggio, the editor of The Long War Journal.

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Nancy Leigh (DeMoss) Wolgemuth Mixes Pagan Witchcraft Circle-Making With Christianity

And people wonder why “Cheetos-eaters living in their mothers’ basements” (discernment bloggers) blog about Christian celebs like Nancy Lee (DeMoss) Wolgemuth!  “Watchbloggers” as we’ve been dubbed, feel that our brethren should know when a Christian leader strays from the truth. And according to Jeff Maples of Pulpit & Pen, DeMoss-Wolgemuth strayed when she began promoting a prayer practice that he believes to be outright witchcraft.  That’s right.  Witchcraft.

Occult symbolOne of the most basic devices used in ancient pagan spirituality is the “circle of protection.” You find it everywhere from the Eastern mystery religions to modern witchcraft. The circle of protection was commonly used in old Gypsy magic, as it was thought to create an impenetrable barrier of protection around those in which it was created.

This “magic” circle, spiritual in nature, could be something physical, such as lines drawn in the dirt or sand, or even a sprinkling of salt. But they could also be imaginary. On page 43 of Gypsy Magic: A Romany Book of Spells, Charms, and Fortune-Telling by Patrinella Cooper, she says …

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The pastor and inappropriate interactions with women in the church

William Thornthon of SBC Voices has provided a list of things that he views as “inappropriate interaction” with women.  He writes:

HuggingWhen a pastor is said to be “inappropriately involved with a woman or women in his church other than his wife”, it used to be that the phrase was our ecclesiastical euphemism for breaking the seventh commandment. The pastor got physically involved in an adulterous affair. Once that is known to be true, the pastor is effectively finished at his church while church leadership attempts to arrange his departure in a way that shows grace towards him and his family but upholds ministry standards.

Opinions vary about whether or not the adulterer pastor is finished for good. LifeWay Research did a poll of pastors on this and found that about one-third though that for the pastor to withdraw for three months to one year would be sufficient, about one-fourth though adultery to be a permanent disqualifier, and one in six though an absence from public ministry of two to ten years would be sufficient.

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Evangelical Misogyny and the Spiritual Oppression of Christian Women

bird-in-a-cageWhen it comes to women in the Church, author, speaker and blogger Michelle Lesley reminds us that “there’s no watered down, Barbie doll, ‘pink is for girls’ version of theology that women are to be taught while the real thing – serious Bible study and theology – is reserved for men.”  She points out that some women are doing “Bible art journaling” workshops so that they can learn how to color in their bibles which is “something we usually teach three year olds not to do.”  Teaching women the art of Bible coloring is of course ludicrous.  So why are women coloring the pages of their bibles and neglecting to do an in depth study?  Michelle asks: “When was the last time you heard of a Christian retailer or an average evangelical church holding a workshop – aimed at women – on biblical hermeneutics, Christology, pneumatology, church history, discernment, evangelism, or any other serious biblical topic?”  In many churches, the answer is never.

This piece is not just for women.  Church leaders, listen up!

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The child was sick so they killed him. And it’s legal

Denny Burk, Professor of Biblical Studies at Boyce College, shares a Christian perspective on euthanasia, or physician-assisted-suicide, and asks some hard questions. He writes:

euthanasia-suicideThe stakes couldn’t be any higher or more grave than they are in this report:

A terminally ill minor has become the first child to be euthanized in Belgium since age restrictions were lifted in the country two years ago, according to several sources.

A Belgian lawmaker told CNN affiliate VTM that the physician-assisted suicide happened within the past week.

The child, who was suffering from an incurable disease, had asked for euthanasia, Sen. Jean-Jacques De Gucht told VTM. The identity of the child and age are unknown.

“I think it’s very important that we, as a society, have given the opportunity to those people to decide for themselves in what manner they cope with that situation,” said Gucht, a supporter of euthanasia legislation.

According to the BBC, the child was 17-years old. Lest you think this is far removed from us, just remember that physician-assisted suicide is already legal in the states of Washington, Oregon, California, and Vermont. We are not so far behind.

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Tragic toll of divorce on kids highlighted by new book

Christian News Network posted a report Christian Institute (CI) penned on the toll divorce takes on children. The soon to be released book has many quotes from kids who’ve experienced divorce. For example, one 15-year-old shared that “Some days I would randomly break into tears and other days I’d get angry and pretend not to know why. I have been struggling with behaviour at school.”  According to CI, research shows that “children whose parents split up and chose new partners were more likely to experience social, educational and health problems than those whose families remained intact, even when there was conflict between the parents.” Here’s the story:

child-cryingThe heartbreaking effects of divorce on children have been highlighted by a new book, which gives them a platform to share their experiences.

‘Splitting Up: A Child’s Guide to a Grown Up Problem’, produced by leading family law firm Mishcon de Reya, includes testimonies from children and teenagers whose parents have divorced.

Family breakdown has long been known to negatively affect the social, educational and health outcomes of children.

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Discernment Ministry – A Biblical Defense

From Berean Research:

DiscernersThere is no shortage of critics in the evangelical community who oppose those of us involved in what is called an online discernment ministry (ODM).  Our well-meaning brethren often take “discerners” to task for reporting on false teachers and apostate movements within the visible Church.  Moreover, we are chastised for being too focused on negative things, or being judgmental, hurtful, even hateful. Worse, some of us have lost friendships with those who complain that they’re tired of reading about wolf sightings.  Some go so far as to say that ODM is not biblical.

Pastor Gary Gilley of Southern View Chapel wrote about this issue back in 2009 where he stated:

Despite the clear mandate given throughout the Scriptures concerning the necessity for biblical discernment and critique, most continue to be critical of the whole concept.  Ironically, those who preach most tenaciously the need for tolerance are themselves intolerant of those who seek to faithfully follow God’s directives in this matter.

Pastor Gilley offers a biblical defense for the role of ODM in the Church.

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Wild horses should be killed or sold, government board decides

Unlike wolves, horses do not wantonly kill and eat cattle, sheep, elk and other wildlife; however, they are native to America, and a national treasure of biodiversity. You will never hear any government land management group say, “Kill all the grey wolves.” So, what gives here? Where is the love for biodiversity?  This dichotomy proves the scam that the BLM (et. al.) simply wants every inconvenient thing off  ‘their’ land. The wolves and grizzly bears that they have methodically planted are a natural cleanser of the land – they scare people away, drive ranchers out of business and eat other wild game with abandon. When all that is accomplished, the wolves will be marked for extinction just like the horses.  Technocracy News Editor

Fox News has the story:

Wild horsesThe U.S. government is coming under fire from animal rights activists amid concerns that almost 45,000 wild horses could be euthanized in an attempt to control their numbers.

Last week the Bureau of Land Management’s National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board recommended that the Bureau euthanize or sell “without limitation” excess “unadoptable” horses and burros in the BLM’s off-range corrals and pastures.

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Code Orange: The Ironic Parallel Meaning

In a piece over at Pulpit & Pen, Richard Haas reports on pastor-prophet Steven Furtick’s annual heresy-fest “Code Orange Revival.” COR is twelve nights of “celebrity preachers, loud worship music and subsequent emotional highs.” A caller to Haas’ podcast suggested that he investigate the name “Code Orange.” And so he did that. Following is what he came up with:

 

Code Orange RevivalThe ten-day heresy revival event called the “Code Orange Revival” hosted by Elevation Church, and Pastor Steven Furtick is well under way. This year’s event started on September 9th and will finish this Sunday the 18th. As typical Steven Furtick has lined up some of the most talented in Scripture-twisting and the exploitation of God’s Word, these gurus of abstraction include Christine Caine, Louie Giglio, Craig Groeschel, Carl Lentz, Darius Daniels, John Gray, Levi Lusko, and even Joyce Meyer. Each one of these speakers being talented of their own accord in the art of Scriptural perversion.

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Decision Making & “I Have a Peace About It”

Eric Davis of The Cripplegate offers several things Christians must consider before using personal peace to determine God’s will for their lives.  One piece of advice Pastor Davis offers is that “we need to stop saying, ‘Because I have a peace about X, X is God’s will.’ Instead, let’s say something like, ‘I have prayed about X, attempted to study X with sound hermeneutics, approached my spiritual shepherds, who will not flatter me but love me with the truth, about X for advice. And, though it’s a battle inside and this is the harder decision, I think that I need to submit to Scripture on this issue so as to submit to God. And may my good God help me do so in faith.’”

peaceA professing Christian was in a rough marriage for many years. It came to the point where they felt as if they could not take it anymore. Divorce entered the thoughts. They sought counsel from other Christians. Some opened Scripture, some didn’t, and some prayed. Though no biblical grounds for divorce, it came to the point where they could not see how God would want them to be unhappy in marriage. The marriage did not bring feelings of peace and comfort. So, they went through with the divorce on the grounds that both they and their close Christian friends “had a peace about it.”

Perhaps you’ve said it. “I have a peace about it.” Sometimes it takes on a different form. “I have prayed about it, so it’s God’s will.” Or, “I have a peace about it, so God is calling me to…” Those words are often-assumed gateways to what God wants me to do in the throes of life. But, is my “peace” God’s enthusiastic permission slip for my “it”? Is my prayer and peace heaven’s approval for whatever “it” may be in my life?

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We Must Never Forget

In 2015, The Center For Medical Progress released undercover videos showing Planned Parenthood executives negotiating prices for harvested organs from aborted babies. After viewing the videos, conservative columnist George Will, who was clearly incensed, opined that one of the many videos showed a “salad-nibbling, wine-sipping Planned Parenthood official explaining how ‘I’m going to basically crush below, I’m going to crush above’ whatever organ (“heart, lung, liver”) is being harvested.”

So that the American people never forget this scandal, SBC Voices is encouraging groups to host prayer vigils at local Planned Parenthood clinics on October 15, 2016, #ProtestPP.

Planned Parenthood 2I remember the outrage. How could anyone do such a thing as this? The images captured on video for all the world to see.

The date was July 14, 2015. The Center for Medical Progress released the first of its many disquieting videos regarding the deplorable practices of Planned Parenthood regarding the trafficking of baby body parts harvested from the barbaric abortion “services” they provide.

I was not the only one outraged by what I saw. For the next several weeks more equally horrifying videos would be released. The discussions on Twitter and Facebook were, to say the least, intense. Amid all these discussions, a few pro-life organizations came together to help organize people across the country into groups to publicly and peacefully protest the abortion and trafficking baby parts practices of Planned Parenthood. They took on the hashtag #ProtestPP.

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This World Is Not Our Home

Jeremiah Johnson is alarmed by how easy it is for believers, including himself, “to be caught up in the cares of this world and to follow the worrying, fearful pattern of unbelievers.”  We worry, we fret, we involve ourselves in all sorts of worldly endeavors and tend to put aside what is eternally important.  In this blog post over at Grace to You, Johnson reminds committed Christians that this world is not our home. He writes:

PlanetDo you know anyone who is not worried about the future? Maybe they’re afraid of contracting the Zika virus, or cancer, or any of the other diseases dominating headlines these days. Perhaps they’re bracing for another global financial crisis, or the next terrorist attack. Or maybe they’re just caught up in concerns over the coming election, and what it means for the future.

No matter where you look, there is reason to be concerned about the state of the world today, and what tomorrow holds.

But should those concerns dominate in the hearts of believers? Should God’s people be worried about the ills of this world and how to fix them? Or do our affections and energies belong elsewhere?

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When “Liberty” Forces 18 Girls Into a Single-Stall Shower Room

showerAccording to James Gottry of The Daily Signal “On Wednesday, Alliance Defending Freedom filed a federal lawsuit on behalf of high school students and parents, asking the court to strike down a Minnesota school district policy that empowers a male student to enter the girls’ locker room and disrobe.”

Later in his piece, Gottry reminds us that this sort of thing would have been unthinkable just a few short years ago, moreover “these tile-floored, plastic-stalled, chrome-fixtured, and (formerly) sex-specific sanctuaries are now ground zero for experiments in the subjective theory of gender.”

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9/11 Anniversary: 10 Lessons Learned From the 15-Year “Long War”

Over at The Daily Signal, research fellow at The Heritage Foundation, Steven Bucci, offers 10 lessons we could learn from 9/11.

ground-zeroHaving been in the Pentagon on 9/11, it does not seem as if it was 15 years ago that our lives and national trajectory were changed so much.

For those who have been in the middle of it all, the time has gone swiftly. To many others, it is ancient history. Some interns at The Heritage Foundation were only as young as 4 and 5 years old on that chaotic day. That said, what lessons could we learn from the trial of the Long War? Here are 10 worth considering.

  1. Every nation is vulnerable, and democracies are even more so.The optimism and freedoms of America make it open to attack. The 9/11 terrorists came here using programs designed to introduce America to the world. In the past, the two great oceans that flank our shores protected us from direct attack. The globalization of everything has made that moot. Americans can be attacked just like everyone else.

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Priscilla Shirer & Women’s Bible “Mis-studies”: When Your Church Doesn’t Care About Your Soul (Or The Scripture)

priscilla-shirer-2-2Bud Ahlheim of Pulpit & Pen warns of the abominable teaching that’s coming to a church near you — perhaps even the church you attend!  “This is a reminder about the danger of Shirer,” says Ahlheim.  “It does not take much discernment to recognize her as a false teacher with toxic teaching. If Christ’s presentation of the antithetical “two paths” is correct (Matthew 7:13) – and, OF COURSE, it is – Shirer’s anti-orthodox, anti-Biblical teaching falls on that undesirable, though emotionally appealing, wide path. She promotes a contemplative, emotions-based, mystical form of faith that is completely foreign to ‘the faith once for all delivered to the saints.’”  (Jude 3)

Priscilla Shirer promotes extra-biblical revelation.  In other words, she teaches that God speaks to believers personally, privately and specifically.  So, with this in mind let’s listen to what Bud Ahlheim has to say on the controversial teaching that believers have an inner ability to hear God’s voice that has become so popular among charismatics.

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Open Letter to David (and now Tim) Barton from a Christian Historian

david-barton-2Many people are unaware that controversial Christian historian David Barton (more on the controversy here) holds some highly unbiblical views.  His beliefs are largely from the apostate New Apostolic Reformation. Barton also has a close association with New Age Mormon Glenn Beck and appears regularly on Word of Faith heretic Kenneth Copeland’s Believer’s Voice of Victory.  So it’s no surprise that liberals like Warren Throckmorton regularly use their blogs to discredit David Barton — and rightly so. In a recent blog post over at Patheos, he quotes from an open letter to David and Tim Barton penned by Grace College history professor Jared Burkholder.  According to Throckmorton the letter was written:

[I]n response to the Barton’s claim that Christian historians don’t rely on primary sources (see these links for more on the Bartons’ claim). The letter begins:

Dear David (and now Tim) Barton,

Maybe you can clarify something for me. Why do you continue to insist that because you read primary sources you have a unique voice when compared to professional Christian historians like me, who you say fail to make use of original sources?

I am hardly the first to be annoyed by this, but suffice it to say this is utterly incomprehensible to me. Primary sources are to historians what hammers are to carpenters; what keyboards are to composers; what language is to writers. They are the tools of our trade, the most basic implements we learn to use.

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Utopia is Burning: Burning Man Festival 2016

What is the meaning of Burning Man?  According to Dr. Peter Jones of truthXchange it “seems to be impermanence (as the 70 foot “Man” being burned at the end of the week seems to suggest), a principle deeply entwined with Buddhism. Impermanence becomes for burners an annual reminder of the transience of life, the eternal return of Osiris.”  The festival is supposed to be about “love, happiness, sharing, giving and appreciating.”  But as Dr. Jones reveals, not everyone who attends is all that “loving.” In fact, some burners are vandals. He writes:

burning-manWhen his ship, The Beagle, docked in Southern Australia in 1831 on the way to the Galapagos Islands, Charles Darwin, one of the leading intellectual skeptics of his day, witnessed naked Aboriginal natives dancing themselves into delirium all night long. In his diary, Darwin wrote that he found this animistic display “a most rude, barbarous scene.”

Times have changed. This year 70,000 people have thronged to the annual countercultural Burning Man Festival in the Nevada desert. Leading hi-tech worthies like Google founders Larry Page, Sergey Brin, and chairman Eric Schmidt, and Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon, along with celebrity visitors like Katy Perry (31), socialite Paris Hilton (35), and British actress and model Cara Delevingne (24) now find such “rude, barbarous scene[s]” totally normal and perfectly cool. These contemporary definers of popular culture have thrown off even the outward standards of public decency dear to Charles Darwin. Burning Man sets the agenda for popular culture. In acts of shameless self-expression, they abandon all inhibition and wander around naked in the desert doing ecstasy and acid, visiting the anonymous-sex-orgy dome (open 24/7), joining in fire dancing, yoga, and meditation. No one is allowed a hint of judgmentalism.

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Alcoholic Pastor, Perry Noble, Says He Will Return To Ministry

Not so fast, says Jeff Maples of Pulpit & Pen.  “Let’s be clear,” he warns, “if God is ever going to use Perry Noble for ministry, the first thing Perry Noble is going to have to do is repent.”  What sins has he committed that he must repent of?  According to Maples, for sinning against God and “misrepresenting him all those years he was pretending to be a pastor.” Likewise, “He needs to repent for all of his false teachings. He needs to repent for leading countless thousands upon thousands of his followers astray, away from the truth and into the darkness. He needs to repent to his family for being a hypocrite, a liar, and a bad leader. And he needs to turn to Jesus Christ in full faith and submit himself to the absolute final authority of Scripture and find a solid, bible-believing church to submit to for teaching and training in righteousness.”

perry-noble-2Perry Noble recently told his Facebook followers that he has completed alcoholic rehab, and would return to ministry–eventually. Noble, the man who is credited with single-handedly building the seeker-friendly Southern Baptist megachurch, Newspring, in Anderson, SC, was fired from his church. Noble is well known for his faulty biblical exposition, unsound theology, and an anger streak that could bring out the worst in anyone. He says,

I spent 30 days in a treatment facility in Arizona from mid-July until mid-August. Being in that place allowed me to come face to face with issues from my past as well as my current struggle, and placed me in a place to successfully overcome my overmedication via alcohol.

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“Socialism of the 21st Century” Collapses in Brazil. Here’s Why It Failed

Over at The Daily Signal James M. Roberts of The Heritage Foundation examines why socialism has failed in Latin American countries.  He writes:

socialismWith the Senate impeachment vote to remove from office former President Dilma Rousseff, Brazilians joined a lengthening line of Latin Americans who have soured on the populist, corrupting, and impoverishing policies of “21st Century Socialism.”

Faced with its disastrous consequences, people in some neighboring countries had already turned the page and moved on. Argentina wised up late last year and installed center-right President Mauricio Macri after more than a decade of misrule by the Peronist Kirchner family.

Earlier this year, Peruvians voted for a 78-year-old center-right economist to get them back on track. And in Caracas, Venezuela, tens of thousands took to the streets demanding the removal of the brutally fascistic regime put in power by one of 21st Century Socialism’s founding fathers, the late Hugo Chávez.

Brazil, government spending programs championed by Rousseff and her socialist mentor and predecessor, “Lula” da Silva, only managed to pull Brazilians out of poverty temporarily, through cash transfers and welfare benefits that ended up nearly bankrupting the country and plunging it into its deepest recession since the 1930s.

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Transgender: Truth and Compassion

Alan Shlemon of Stand To Reason offers a biblical perspective on how to balance truth with compassion when responding to people about the transgender issue.

transgender9Imagine a woman telling you, “I’m transgender. Please call me Michael.” It’s obvious she’s female, but she’s asking you to call her by a man’s name. What do you do?

Many people today reject the notion that gender is a fixed trait based on biology. Rather, they believe gender is a flexible trait based on society. As feminist and social theorist Simone de Beauvoir wrote, “One is not born, but rather becomes, woman.”?1 Anatomy, therefore, is not destiny. One can choose what gender one wants to be.

Though this sounds counterintuitive, the culture is buying it. They are sympathetic to the plight of transgender people. They believe “Michael” is a man trapped in a woman’s body and they’re willing to accommodate the transgender perception.

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Not “Tired,” but Tried and True!

There are some naysayers in the Christian community who have come out against online discernment ministries (ODM’s) as they feel the work “discerners” do is, in their view, unbiblical Amy Spreeman of Berean Research, a popular discernment blog, disagrees.  In this piece, Amy explains the purpose of ODM’s and why pointing discouraged and confused believers in the right direction has helped them discover Truth.  Because of ODM’s, many people who were once caught up in a cult, false teaching, and idolatry say they’ve been set free.

Sheep butting heads “For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths.”  — 2 Timothy 4:3-4

I recently heard someone lament that discernment reporters always trot out the same tired old Scripture verses to defend why they report all the negative things that today’s Bible teachers teach and do that aren’t lining up with Scripture. I thought it a strange thing, to tell Christians that using the Word of God as a basis for following His commands to be discerning and defend the true faith as being a bad thing.

When Jesus’ disciples asked Him what would be the signs they could look to as the end of the age, the first thing Jesus did was to warn them not to be deceived. (You can read about that here.)  His words were to the believers and true followers. Yes, it seems that true Christians CAN be deceived, or Jesus wouldn’t have warned us to take care not to be.

Why do reporters write about those in our times who are twisting Scripture? Is it because we are hateful, or singularly focused on negative things?  No. I believe that discerning Christians need to be Bereans to continually search Scriptures to make sure they are following the truth rather than what sounds almost true. But here’s the problem: They are not being taught how to do that by their leaders. Instead, their leaders are giving a nod of approval to false teachings and teachers.

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