Thoughts on Driscoll and the biblical qualifications for a pastor

Pastoring 101 – here’s what should happen when seminary students show up for their first day of class: they are handed two live sheep. And the professor then tells them this: your assignment is to look after these sheep for the next semester. You are to feed them, care for them, tend them, comb their wool, and protect them from wolves. If, at the end of the semester, you return both of these sheep to me, alive and in good condition (i.e. they not frightened, malnourished or missing any limbs), then you will have earned the right to graduate to the next step: learning how to minister to actual people. View article →

Jesus Calling – whitewashing the red flags

Amy Spreeman, co-host of Stand Up For The Truth, reports that the 10th anniversary edition of the controversial book Jesus Calling has undergone a miraculous “transformation” without any explanation from publisher Thomas Nelson or the author Sarah Young. Could this be damage control by the publisher who discovered that Young’s “Jesus” is not the Jesus of the Bible? View article →

What John Piper finally said about the issue of Mark Driscoll … what we wish he had said instead

Since his resignation, former megachurch pastor Mark Driscoll has reportedly fled the biblical process of church discipline at Mars Hill, perhaps in favor of setting up another church elsewhere with those willing to turn a blind eye to his sins and unresolved conflicts at his former church. (For documentation of Driscoll’s having fled the discipline process, listen to the audio of Mars Hill pastor A.J. Hamilton speaking at the 19 October 2014 Mars Hill church service, beginning at the 37 minute mark.)

Understandably, many eyes have now turned to Dr. Piper, who has in past years given Driscoll a large and generous platform, beginning with featuring Driscoll at the 2006 Desiring God conference. In a recent interview, Dr. Piper was asked if, given the magnitude of the scandals now associated with Driscoll, he had any regrets in partnering with Driscoll over the years. In essence, Dr. Piper stated in the interview published on 13 November 2014 that, despite “mistakes that Mark may have made” or instances in which “he might have walked out of step with the truth,” he had “no regrets” over partnering with Driscoll, and that despite some misgivings he had, he felt that Driscoll was on the whole a solid teacher.

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Roma Downey casts Victoria Osteen, Kay Warren, Joyce Meyer in TV show

Amy Spreeman, co-host of Stand Up For The Truth, reports:

Roma Downey and her husband Mark Burnett, who gave us the unbiblical The Bible and The Son of God films, is now making a 2-hour Lifetime Television series, “The Women of the Bible.”

Stop. (Just stop.) Back up to The Bible and The Son of God. These two programs were so error-filled, that we need to review just how far off Downey and Burnett are from biblical truth…

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Bethel Church’s “apostle” Bill Johnson: a comedy of errors

“Bill Johnson is no stranger to controversy,” says Marsha West. “For one thing, he claims to be an apostle, as in the unique position held by the twelve apostles of Jesus Christ.” Are the self-proclaimed apostles and prophets in the same league as the Old Testament prophets and New Testament Apostles as they claim? Or are these men and women what Jesus declared “ravenous wolves” in Matthew 7:15? In West’s two part series, discover the many twists and turns the new apostolic-prophetic movement has taken over the years.

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Mars Hill “Global Fund” contributors with concerns invited to contact Washington State Attorney General’s office

Mars Hill pastor Mark Driscoll, who was first introduced to the world by being featured as a keynote speaker at John Piper’s 2006 Desiring God conference, and who quickly gathered a large following along with a “bad boy” reputation, has now resigned. However, questions still remain about alleged improprieties having to do with the handling of some of the finances while he was the lead pastor at his church, particularly with respect to the Mars Hill Global Fund, a fund to which Mars Hill attendees were encouraged to contribute, and which was positioned as being for missions.  View article →

Mars Hill pastor Mark Driscoll resigns, claims he is not “disqualified from future ministry”

Mars Hill pastor Mark Driscoll, who was first introduced to the world by being featured as a keynote speaker at John Piper’s 2006 Desiring God conference, and who quickly gathered a large following along with a “bad boy” reputation, has now resigned. However, in his resignation letter, Driscoll appeared to leave open the possibility of his return to public ministry by stating that he was thankful to the Mars Hill church oversight committee for making it clear that he (Driscoll) has not been disqualified from future ministry. His basis for making such a claim seems to rest on the fact that the oversight committee had stated that Driscoll had not been charged with “criminal activity, immorality or heresy.” It should be noted, however, that these things, while important, are not the entire standard against which a pastor is to be held. View article →

Mark Driscoll: I made the mistake of trying to be under the authority of my elders

Psychology professor Warren Throckmorton, who writes for Patheos, has the latest on the Mark Driscoll saga. He has included a video that shows Mark and Grace Driscoll acknowledging mistakes they’ve made in ministry. “Driscoll makes revealing statements about his views of his elders,” says Throckmorton. “These opinions give insight into the changes in governance at Mars Hill since 2007…” View article →

Carl Trueman: Concerns with Quiverfull/Patriarchy

For anyone wanting to hear a balanced discussion about a movement within conservative Christianity known as the Quiverfull/Patriarchy movement, and the problems with it, please listen to the Sinister Headship episode of the Alliance of Confessing Evangelical’s Mortification of Spin radio show. Carl Trueman’s guest is Rachel Miller of The Aquila Report, who recently wrote an article entitled The Soul-numbing Dangers of Patriarchy.

Christine Pack and Cathy Matthews comment further on their Sola Sisters blog. View article →

Christian meditation: what’s Biblical and what’s not

A large number of Christian celebrities and evangelical churches promote contemplative prayer (CP). Through meditation the practitioner is brought into an altered state of consciousness that differs radically from normal waking consciousness. The goal of CP is to unite the practitioner with God. But is this practice biblical? CRN correspondent Marsha West examines what the scriptures teach on meditation and lays out what’s biblical and what’s not.

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The Osteen predicament – mere happiness cannot bear the weight of the Gospel

Dr. Albert Mohler, president of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, addresses the absurd comments made by Victoria Osteen, wife of prosperity preacher Joel Osteen, during a recent talk she gave at his church. Victoria Osteen said:

I just want to encourage every one of us to realize when we obey God, we’re not doing it for God—I mean, that’s one way to look at it – we’re doing it for ourselves, because God takes pleasure when we’re happy. That’s the thing that gives Him the greatest joy. So, I want you to know this morning: Just do good for your own self. Do good because God wants you to be happy. When you come to church, when you worship Him, you’re not doing it for God really. You’re doing it for yourself, because that’s what makes God happy. Amen?

Mohler offers valid reasons why Joel and Victoria Osteen’s slick version of Prosperity Theology is a heresy that is spreading throughout much of the world. “The important issue is this,” says Mohler, “Prosperity Theology is a false Gospel”.

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9/11: a wake up call for one woman

9/11 woke me up. In fact, it awakened both me and my husband from our easygoing lifestyle. You’ve read articles that mention there was a massive influx in church services right after 9/11 happened? My husband and I were part of that. We went to church with lots of questions. If our lives can be snuffed out in an instant, what does it all mean? Is there a God? If there is a God, is He good? And if He is good, why did He let 9/11 happen? Turns out, we were asking all the wrong questions. View article →

The prosperity priestess and the pied piper of IHOP

CRN correspondent Marsha West reports that prosperity preacher Joyce Meyer has agreed to speak at the upcoming International House of Prayer’s Onething Conference. The director of IHOP is none other than self-proclaimed “prophet” Mike Bickle. Could this be a sign that Meyer is on the verge of aligning with the modern day “apostles and prophets” movement?

Marsha also reports that noted evangelical philosopher and apologist Ravi Zacharias appeared on Joyce Meyer’s TV show; likewise, popular Reformed pastor Francis Chan shared a stage with Mike Bickle. How is it that men of their stature are unaware that both Moore and Bickle preach a carefully crafted counterfeit Christianity?

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The low-information evangelical, part 2

In part 1, Marsha West brought the reader up to speed on Beth Moore’s slide into mysticism and also gave a heads up on her unbiblical teaching. In part 2 she reports on Moore’s recent appearance on Word of Faith teacher Joyce Meyer’s TV show and her eagerness to unite with someone who teaches a false gospel. Marsha also brings to light the unprecedented biblical illiteracy of a large number of professing Christians. She argues that evangelical has become such a broad term that it has lost its meaning. The proof of this is that false teachers such as Joel Osteen, T.D. Jakes, Joyce Meyer and Rob Bell are considered evangelicals. View article →

Hope for Christians who have been spiritually abused

When you think of spiritual abuse, does your mind conjure up a rigid, stifling environment in which people are expected to dress in an extremely conservative way, and adhere to certain legalistic rules in order to be accepted? While it’s true that these are sometimes the marks of a spiritually abusive environment,

What about a church whose members are often in true fellowship with each other? Churches where members laugh together, eat meals together, study God’s Word together, bowl and bike and hike together, and swap recipes and share coffee while the kids play together?

As surprising as it may seem, spiritual abuse can happen in these environments just as much as in the obviously legalistic churches. And oftentimes, those experiencing the abuse are not even aware that it is taking place. View article →

 

The low-information evangelical

Is it a good thing or a bad thing for an evangelical Christian to be branded a “LIE?” What about a “u-LIE”?

Beth Moore is one the most popular Bible teachers in the Church. Millions of women read her books and flock to her conferences to learn from her. But is this trusted teacher rightly dividing the Word of Truth?

Would God approve of His people taking a “Christian” yoga class?

Marsha West answers these questions and tackles the visible church’s descent into Christian mysticism.

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Yes theology matters (and so does the mind)

In this piece, author and apologist Bill Muehlenberg eludidates how contemporary Christians have been deliberately dumbed down and “are largely ignorant of all sorts of things.” Many in the postmodern Church don’t know what they believe and why they believe it, nor do they know why truth matters. According to Muehlenberg, Christians are not using their minds, intellect and reason, which is a “direct violation of the most important commandment of all: the commandment given by Jesus to love God with all our heart, soul, and mind.” He puts the blame squarely on bad theology, which dishonors God.

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What about that Australian study about same-sex parenting?

Janice Shaw Crouse, author and executive director and senior fellow at Concerned Women for America, questions the methodology of a recent same-sex parenting study that was conducted in Australia. She says the study “‘found’ that children’s well-being with homosexual parents was as good or better than with heterosexual parents.” Crouse disagrees and claims that lines were blurred between facts and fiction.

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The Christian and essential oils: a few thoughts

For those Christians who haven’t heard, essential oils are big business. Big, big business. Make no mistake: essential oils are the hottest thing going since yoga invaded the church a decade ago. One of the largest and most well known of these essential oils companies is Young Living. Young Living sells its products through Multi-Level Marketing (MLM), a pyramid form of selling that works through networking. (Other MLM companies that might be familiar to some readers are Amway, Juice Plus, Pampered Chef, Herbalife and Mary Kay.)

If you happen to be one of the few that hasn’t yet heard about essential oils, just wait. One day soon your Facebook inbox will blow up with invitations to this or that essential oils home party. If you choose to attend one of these parties, you might learn some useful tips for making nice-smelling homemade cleaning products or cosmetics with essential oils, but you might also be exposed to some very unbiblical concepts about sin, sanctification and illness.

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Rethinking the Bible: a reassessment among some evangelicals

Jim Hinch, contributing writer for the Orange County Register, writes that a growing number of evangelicals are asking if their historic view of Scripture is too dogmatic. In his piece, Hinch includes the opinions of several professing Christians – including Rob Bell (who has been exposed as an apostate) – as he endeavors to examine what is going on in the increasingly liberal church in America. According to Hinch, “A study this year by the American Bible Society found that nearly 40 percent of Americans under age 30 never read the Bible, while 16 percent of young adults consider the Bible ‘the actual word of God.’”

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Bethel’s Bill Johnson: “Jesus was so empty of divine capacity…”

John Lanagan of My Word Like Fire writes concerning the latest heresy coming out of Bethel Church in Redding, CA:

Bill Johnson is an effective purveyor of kenosis, the heretical teaching that Christ operated on earth solely as a man, with no “Divine capacity” whatsoever. Every miracle, every healing that Christ performed, according to Johnson, came about through the power of the Holy Spirit. Therefore, Johnson teaches, we can all perform healings and miracles, since we also have access to the Holy Spirit.

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