Thursday, July 31, 2008

WWW.BACKTOSCRIPTURE.COM - Doctrine Statement (Part 3)

Continuing on from yesterday we have the final 5 essential doctrines from the Back To Scripture ministry (many of these doctrines were derived from Paul Washer's "Heart Cry Missionary" statement and the "Together For the Gospel" statement).

THE CHURCH. The Lord Jesus is the Head of the Church (Ephesians 1:22, Colossians 1:18), which is composed of all His true disciples (Ephesians 2:11-3:6), and in Him is invested supremely all power for its government. According to His commandment, Christians are to associate themselves into particular societies or churches (Acts 14:23,27, 20:17,28, Galatians 1:2, Philippians 1:1, I Thessalonians 1:1); and to each of these churches He has given needful authority for administering the order, discipline and worship which He has appointed (Acts 20:28, Ephesians 4:11). The regular officers of a church are Bishops (or Elders) and Deacons (I Timothy 3:1-13, Titus 1:5-9, I Peter 5:1-5).

BAPTISM. Baptism is an ordinance of the Lord Jesus, obligatory upon every believer, wherein he is immersed in water in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, as a sign of his fellowship with the death and resurrection of Christ, of remission of sins, and of his giving himself up to God, to live and walk in newness of life (Matthew 28:19, Acts 2:41-42, 8:36-39, Romans 6:1-11).

THE LORD’S SUPPER. The Lord’s Supper is an ordinance of Jesus Christ, to be administered with bread and wine, and to be observed by His churches till the end of the world. It is in no sense a sacrifice, but is designed to commemorate His death, to confirm the faith of Christians, and to be a bond, pledge, and renewal of their communion with Him, and of their church fellowship (Luke 22:15-20, I Corinthians 10:16, 11:23-32).

THE RESURRECTION. There will be a resurrection of both the saved and the lost; those who are saved unto the resurrection of life, and those who are not unto the resurrection of damnation (John 5:28-29).

THE JUDGMENT. God has appointed a day, wherein He will judge the world by Jesus Christ, when everyone shall receive according to his deeds: the wicked shall go into everlasting punishment; the righteous, into everlasting life (Ecclesiastes 12:13-14, Acts 17:30-31, II Corinthians 5:10, I Peter 4:17, Revelation 20:12).

Go Back To Part 2
Go Back To Part 1

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

WWW.BACKTOSCRIPTURE.COM - Doctrine Statement (Part 2)

Continuing on from yesterday we have 5 more essential doctrines from the Back To Scripture ministry (many of these doctrines were derived from Paul Washer's "Heart Cry Missionary" statement and the "Together For the Gospel" statement).

REGENERATION. Regeneration is a change of heart, wrought by the Holy Spirit, who makes alive those who are dead in trespasses and sins, enlightening their minds spiritually and savingly to understand the Word of God, and renewing their whole nature, so that they love and practice holiness. It is a work of God’s free and special grace alone (Ezekiel 36:24-27, John 3:3-8, II Corinthians 5:17, Titus 3:5) .

REPENTANCE. Repentance is an evangelical grace, wherein the Holy Spirit makes a person aware of the manifold evil of his sin, so that he humbles himself with godly sorrow, detesting sin, and abhorring [i.e., hating] self, with a purpose and endeavor to walk before God so as to please Him in all things (Psalm 51, Mark 1:15, Luke 13:3, 24:47, Acts 11:18, 20:21, II Corinthians 7:9-10).

FAITH. Saving faith is the belief, on God’s authority, of whatsoever is revealed in His Word concerning Christ; accepting and resting upon Him alone for justification and eternal life. It is wrought in the heart by the Holy Spirit, and is accompanied by all other saving grace, and leads to a life of holiness (John 6:44-45, Romans 10:17, I Corinthians 12:3, Ephesians 2:8, Titus 1:1, Hebrews 10:39)

JUSTIFICATION. Justification is God’s gracious and full acquittal of sinners who believe in Christ, from all sin, through the satisfaction that Christ has made. It is given not for anything wrought in them or done by them, but on account of the obedience and satisfaction of Christ, they receiving and resting on Him and His righteousness by faith (Acts 3:19, Romans 3:26, 4:5-7, 8:30-33, I Corinthians 1:30).

SANCTIFICATION. Those who have been regenerated are also sanctified by God’s Word and Spirit dwelling in them. This sanctification is progressive through the supply of Divine strength, which all saints seek to obtain, pressing after a heavenly life in cordial [i.e., willing] obedience to all Christ’s commands (John 17:17-19, Acts 20:32, Galatians 5:16-25, I Peter 1:2).

To be continued tomorrow - WWW.BACKTOSCRIPTURE.COM - Doctrine Statement Part 3

Go On To Part 3
Go Back To Part 1

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

WWW.BACKTOSCRIPTURE.COM - Doctrine Statement (Part 1)

We are based in Denmark and our ministry has a Danish name and website (Tilbage til Biblen WWW.TILBAGETILBIBELEN.DK). But since we have many english speaking friends and supporters as well, we have done our tracts in both english and danish, and we have an english website on the way (which will be an english mirror of the danish website). I am very excited to say that the Danish website is now up and running (though still a work in progress). There is some english stuff on there at the moment and you might like to take a look at the design and layout so you know what to expect with the Back to Scripture website when it arrives.

That said, we have written our statement of essential Christian doctrine and would love feedback. Most of the statement has been derived from the "Together For The Gospel" statement, and the "Heart Cry Missionary" (Paul Washer's ministry) statement. We don't want to reinvent the wheel, but we do want a theologically solid statement to make a call for orthodoxy within the various denominations in Denmark (many of which have no doctrinal statement). We all know that building a house is a waste of time without a proper foundation being laid. So it is with doctrine which, like the foundation of a building, is largely unseen but supports everything that is visible in the Body of Christ.

What follows is the first five Doctrinal points coupled with supporting Scriptures.

THE SCRIPTURES. The sole authority for the Church is the Bible, verbally inspired, innerrant, infallible, and totally sufficient and trustworthy. No portion of Scripture is marked by error or the effects of human sinfulness. The authority and sufficiency of Scripture extends to the entire Bible and is therefore the final authority for all doctrine and practice. No portion of the Bible is to be used in an effort to deny the truthfulness or trustworthiness of any other portion. There can be no effort to identify a canon within the canon or, for example, to set the words of Jesus against the writings of Paul (II Timothy 3:15-17, II Peter 1:21).

GOD. There is but one God, the Maker, Preserver and Ruler of all things, having in and of Himself all perfections, and being infinite in them all; and to Him all creatures owe the highest love, reverence and obedience (Genesis 1:1, Deuteronomy 6:4, Isaiah 45:22, Revelation 22:13).

THE TRINITY. The one true God is revealed to us as three distinct persons, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, each with distinct personal attributes, but without division of nature, essence, or being (Genesis 1:26, Matthew 28:19, John 1:1, 10:30, Acts 5:3-4, Colossians 2:9, I John 5:7).

THE FALL OF MAN. God originally created man in His own image (Genesis 1:27), for His glory (Isaiah 43:7), and free from sin (Genesis 2:25); but, through the temptation of Satan, man transgressed the command of God, and fell from his original holiness and righteousness (Genesis 3:1-24); whereby his posterity [i.e. descendants] inherit a nature corrupt and wholly opposed to God and His law (Romans 3:9-18), are under condemnation (Romans 5:18), and as soon as they are capable of moral action, become actual transgressors (Psalm 51:5).

THE MEDIATOR. Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God (John 3:16), is the divinely appointed mediator between God and man (I Timothy 2:5). Having taken upon Himself human nature (Philippians 2:5-8), yet without sin (Hebrews 4:15), He perfectly fulfilled the law (Matthew 5:17), suffered and died upon the cross for the salvation of sinners (John 10:15, Romans 3:25, I Peter 2:24). He was buried, rose again on the third day (I Corinthians 15:4), and ascended to His Father (Acts 1:9), at whose right hand He lives forever to make intercession for His people (Romans 8:34). He shall return in power and great glory to judge the living and the dead (II Timothy 4:1). He is the only Mediator, the Prophet (Acts 3:20-22), Priest (Hebrews 4:14), and King of the church, and Sovereign of the Universe (Ephesians 1:21-22).

To be continued tomorrow - WWW.BACKTOSCRIPTURE.COM - Doctrine Statement Part 2

Go On To Part 2

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Coming Soon - WWW.BACKTOSCRIPTURE.COM

I am very proud to be a part of a ministry that is almost ready to launch. Any day now a new website WWW.BACKTOSCRIPTURE.COM and it's Danish counterpart WWW.TILBAGETILBIBELEN.DK will launch on the web. This is a ministry that is based in Denmark and is focussed on dealing with the most important issues facing Denmark/Europe as the heartland of the Reformation now crumbles in the ruins of centuries of secular humanist thinking.

Back to Scripture is about contending for the purity of the Christian Gospel, the return of preaching to the public place, and calling churches to orthodoxy by establishing a statement of basic Christian doctrine that allows for denominational distinctives.

500 years ago Europe saw a mighty move of God where heroic preachers risked their lives to defend essential Christian truths. None more so than how sinful men can be justified before a Holy God by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone. These preachers waged war on the false gospel that prevailed in their day. Today, in the 21st century, the prevailing wind of "modern Christianity" is another false gospel, a gospel more concerned with enhancing lives than saving souls. It is time to contend/defend once again. This site is dedicated to the preachers and disciples of today who have not bowed their knees to the Baal's of self esteem, success, and sensuality, but whose concern is the Glory of God in saving damned souls. To those who are returning to the Gospel as preached in the Early Church, during the Reformation, and by the Revivalists. To those who are going back to the fundamental truths of the Christian faith, back to fervent preaching of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, back to our perfect authority – BACK TO SCRIPTURE.

Back to Scripture is a movement where the purity of the Christian Gospel is the central focus of everything we labor in and contend for. Here you will find information concerning the big questions – life and death, heaven and hell, God and man. This site is also loaded with resources to help Christians share the Gospel with friends, neighbors, family, and strangers. The backbone of the site is our Doctrine Statement which we hold to as the essential truths of the historic Christian faith.

WHAT WE ARE – OUR MISSION

Back to Scripture is all about glorifying God by doing the main thing He told us to do – preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the whole world. Our strategy for this is three fold:
1. Taking the message of Jesus Christ outside the four walls of church buildings by:
(a) Public distribution of free Gospel Tracts
(b) One to one witnessing of the Gospel
(c) Open air preaching in public places
(d) Training people for all of the above

2. Within the four walls of church buildings by:
(a) Calling all churches to orthodoxy using the Doctrines as a benchmark
(b) Gospel preaching at church meetings calling on people to examine themselves (2 Cor 13:5)
(c) Providing Way of the Master evangelism training courses

3. Cyberspace – this website through:
(a) Online Gospel presentations in written, audio, and video form
(b) Calling church leaders and members to officially support and comply with the Doctrines
(c) Providing information for people wanting to find a fellowship that holds to the Doctrines


WHAT WE ARE NOT

1. A church – Back to Scripture is not a church but exists to support and encourage the wider church body across denominations in faithful preaching of the biblical Gospel. We desire to assist church members wherever they are to become more effective witnesses for Jesus Christ and thereby improve the health of their local fellowship.

2. A denomination – Back to Scripture does not exist to make Baptists more Pentecostal or Lutherans more Methodist. We do not want to intrude at all on the distinctive theologies of different movements. We gladly accept differences outside of the essential doctrines of how people can receive salvation. We desire unity on the message of the Gospel itself because nothing else is more important for all of mankind.

3. After your money – Back to Scripture is a non-profit organization that allows people to provide financial support should they desire this, but there is no emphasis or pressure on people to do so. God loves a cheerful giver and we don’t want to interfere with that. We also believe that our approach to spreading the Gospel is very inexpensive when compared with most modern large scale outreaches.

WATCH THIS SPACE WWW.BACKTOSCRIPTUE.COM FOR A WEBSITE THAT WE HOPE WILL BE AN ENORMOUS BLESSING TO YOU

At Back to Scripture we care about where you will spend eternity and want to provide you with information and resources so that you will be without excuse on the day when your Creator judges you. So please

Don’t hesitate to e-mail us if you have any further questions (info@backtoscripture.com)
The team at Back to Scripture

How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things! (Rom 10:14-15)

Continued tomorrow - The Back to Scripture Doctrine Statement

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Sacred Cow Saturday - Episode 1 - Spanking Part 1

Pro 13:24 Whoever spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him.

Many people in eastern religions have sacred cows that they refuse to touch. But many in the west are no different. Subjects that are avoided in the name of "unity", diplomacy, political correctness, and ultimately the fear of man.

Here at The Bottom Line we love sacred cows and even think that they taste great on a barbecue. So much so that we plan to grill something every Saturday. In europe, among many churchgoers, the subject of spanking children is a very sacred cow. Due to many governments making it illegal, coupled with being heavily influenced by the secular humanist worldview, spanking is an "Area 51" as far as discussions go. Though Scripture speaks explicitly on the subject it is taboo in the pulpit and generally hushed up in private conversations - BUT NOT TODAY

It's high time this cow got carved up and served with a side of open dialogue. Who better to communicate truth profoundly, fervently and passionately than John Piper. John says that he's willing to go to jail over the issue - click HERE to hear

Pro 22:15 Folly is bound up in the heart of a child, but the rod of discipline drives it far from him.

Continued next saturday - Spanking Part 2 with Tedd Tripp

Go On To Episode 2

Friday, July 25, 2008

Gay Preacher gets Slammed from the Pews

This Episcopalean Bishop (who is a practising homosexual) was visiting the UK and speaking in an Anglican church there. One of the congregation members decided to point out something that should have been obvious to the gay minister - HE'S A HERETIC.



The heckler in the video doesn't look like someone from the typical Anglican demographic does he?

I honestly care for the struggles of people who wrestle with homosexual tendencies. Please don't think this is aimed at you if you struggle in this area. But please - twisting Scripture and making a God in your own image is not the answer to sin. The heckler from the pews is the man with the answer - REPENT. It is the answer for all transgressions of which homosexual behavior is one. Jesus Himself said (and repeated Himself) "unless you repent, you will all likewise perish" (Luke 13:3,5). Repentance is a hard road to travel which requires deep humility and brokenness in spirit, but it is a road that heads for eternal life paved with the blood of our wonderful Savior Jesus Christ.

Thus says the LORD: "Heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool; what is the house that you would build for me, and what is the place of my rest?
All these things my hand has made, and so all these things came to be, declares the LORD. But this is the one to whom I will look: he who is humble and contrite in spirit and trembles at my word (Isaiah 66:1-2).

Christian brother and sister - do you tremble at God's Word or do you look for loopholes?

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Amusing Grace

When was the last time you sang "Amazing Grace"? What were you thinking as you uttered those words "that saved a wretch like me"? Did those words ring true or just roll off the tongue never to be pondered.

It's a popular catchphrase in our modern church culture to throw the word grace around like the fifth ammendment. If a sermon didn't seem very nice then someone will be prone to say that it lacked grace. But what does it mean? Is it something other than a warm fuzzy feeling? I can recall recently hearing an hour long sermon about grace without the word ever being defined during the whole message.

We need to be sharp in our witness and how we define what we say. The mormon also says that he is "saved by grace". It is only when you press the mormon on his understanding of "grace" that his works righteous religion is revealed. This issue might confuse the pastor of the "largest church in America" but it need not confuse us. According to websters dictionary "grace" means undeserved favour. This raises the question why is God's grace undeserved - I'm glad you asked.

Last sunday I spoke with a man who is an old work acquaintence of a friend of mine called Rene (yes,I have a friend). They both worked together as teachers at a Christian school and would sometimes preach in their chapel services. I asked the man what he thought about Rene's preaching. The conversation went something like this:

Man: the problem with Rene was that he didn't preach grace.

Cameron: could you elaborate on that?

M: He sometimes talked about sin, hell, judgment and that people needed to repent.

C: Did he ever talk about Christ's work on the cross and the blood He shed for human sin?

M: Yes he talked about that a lot.

C: Do you know what "grace" means?

M: (long pause) . . . . . . .

C: It actually means undeserved favor. Do you know why we don't deserve God's favor?

M: Because of sin??

C: So how is it possible to preach grace without talking about sin?

M: I see your point.

A failure to talk about sin, righteousness, and judgment robs grace of it's meaning. Grace is only ever amusing when we fail to see our guilt. Next time you find yourself singing Amazing Grace, examine yourself in the light of God's moral law and look to the cross and marvel at how a good God would be willing to save a wretch like you.

Tomorrow - Why the Law Must Thunder From the Pulpit

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Tony Campolo - Cross Examined Again

A while back I posted (July 9 - Faithful Are the Wounds of a Friend) about how one of my best friends gave me some stern criticism over my post concerning the deceptions of the "social gospel" (July 1 - The Smokescreen of the Social gospel) as preached by Tony Campolo and many from the emergent crowd. Now my friend is not a liberal by any stretch but he tends to be more accomodating than I am (and Todd Friel for that matter).

This friend is a precious brother who has, over the years, patiently watched me while I've ridden hobby horse after hobby horse, mounted soap box after soap box, and continually beaten my fists at the table of negotiation as a reformer looking for something to reform. On reflection I would have to say that my friend has always exhibited greater wisdom, been less impulsive, and exhibited far more courtesy than I ever have to my own discredit. He is a pondering Berean who generally tends to give the benefit of the doubt and always tries to put the best possible construction on things - of which I have been the beneficiary on numerous occasions.

With these things in mind I have taken my time to chew over the criticism's my good friend levelled at myself and at Todd Friel's anlysis of Tony Campolo's social gospel agenda. Todd Friel has even e-mailed me saying how sad he is to criticise Tony Campolo's theology because he is so "likable". No doubt about it - Tony Campolo is involved with doing a lot of good things and helping a lot of people. But in the interest of the truth and the purity of the Gospel, questions must be asked. And the many good things Tony Campolo is involved in can actually serve to wrap the lies of the "social gospel" in a lot of truth - which is exactly the kind of sandwich that a church culture full of undiscerning youth will readily swallow.

My friend has worked a lot with youth and teens and I remain convinced that the philosophy of "eat the fish and spit out the bones" is a suicidal approach to the spiritual diet of the people in one's care, particularly youth. I contend that a far safer approach in this age of biblical illiteracy is "bad fruit therefore bad tree therefore stay away from that thing" and remedy the biblical illiteracy by teaching the Bible expositorally (if that's a word).

So was Todd Friel too hard on Tony Campolo? Well let's welcome theological heavyweight John MacArthur into the fray and see what he has to say about the "social gospel" of Tony Campolo. It's well worth the listen . . .



My friend may be wise, and his words carry weight, but I'm going to side with John MacArthur and Todd Friel on this one. Shepherds beware - of false gospels dressed like sheep.

Monday, July 21, 2008

The Bottom Line "Standing Up" Hero of the Week Award - Franklin Graham

In an age of wimpy accomodating and compromising ecumenism Franklin Graham stands up (and I don't mean in the same way as the preacher in the King James Only video posted several weeks ago) as a real Christian man of conviction unwilling to compromise no matter what the stakes.

At a recent meeting between Democratic Presidential candidate Barack Obama and "Christian leaders" it was left to Franklin Graham to stick it to Obama on the abortion issue (Obama even supports the grotesque late term abortions) and question him about the authenticity of his Christianity, and his ties to Islam. According to reports Graham then witnessed to Barack Obama. Reverend Graham - The Bottom Line salutes you as a genuine Christian leader - Hey Pastor, when was the last time you were with a public official and took the time to witness to him?

World Net Daily Article by Aaron Klein

JERUSALEM – At a meeting with Christian leaders last month, Sen. Barack Obama reportedly was peppered with questions by Franklin Graham – son of evangelist Billy Graham – about the presidential candidate's ties to Islam, his Christian baptism and whether he accepts Jesus as his savior, it has emerged.

The new accounts, published by the Religion News Service and by the left-leaning magazine The Nation, contrast with major media reports describing Obama's closed-door meeting June 10 with Christian A-listers as friendly.

"I can confirm Rev. Graham did indeed ask Obama about his personal faith. Because it was a private meeting, it is up to Obama if he wants to release any more information," Graham's spokesman, Jeremy Blume, told WND.

Obama's meeting with about 30 Christian leaders took place at a downtown Chicago law office. According to The Nation's Max Blumenthal, quoting sources inside the meeting, Graham, who serves as chief of the Christian aid organization Samaritan's Purse, sat next to Obama.

One meeting attendee, Rev. Eugene Rivers, pastor of Boston's Azusa Christian Community, told the Religion News Service that Graham asked about Obama's Christian beliefs and the senator's family connections to Islam.

Obama's father, described in some reports as an atheist, polygamist and alcoholic, was buried in Kenya as a Muslim. Barack Obama Sr. had three sons with another woman who reportedly all are Muslim. The Illinois senator's brother, Roy, is described as a practicing Muslim.

Rivers said Obama told Graham of this father: "the least of the things he was was Islamic."

According to River's account, Graham went on to ask Obama whether he believed Jesus is the only way to salvation.

Rivers, a declared Obama supporter, recalled: "Obama said, brilliantly, 'Jesus is the only way for me. I'm not in a position to judge other people.'"

Rivers said he was disappointed by some of Graham's questioning, explaining he thought the meeting would focus on domestic policy.

"They focused on abortion, gay marriage, and then Franklin Graham tried to get Senator Obama saved," said Rivers. End quote.

I wonder what it is exactly that the Rev. Eugene Rivers objects to? He obviously doen't place much importance on an individual's salvation.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Stop apologizing - It's not Always Wrong to be a "Single-issue" Advocate

By Joe Belz from World Magazine

It's become an increasingly frequent reminder to us evangelical Christians not to let our cultural identity be framed by "single issues."

It was a reminder implicitly included in the "Evangelical Manifesto," a document whose basic content we at WORLD have applauded but whose political direction I questioned in our last issue. Why are the Manifesto's backers so ready to join the cultural left in suggesting a guilt trip for those evangelicals who have been preoccupied with the evils of abortion and same-sex marriage?

And if some argue that the rising generation of younger evangelicals is a bit embarrassed by what they think is an out-of-balance focus by their elders, and thinks it's time to get equally exercised over issues like racism, economic justice, and the environment—well, if that's the case with our twentysomethings and our teenagers, then maybe we need to go to work and do a better job of explaining to them why we've put the emphasis where we have for the last generation and why we believe that it's time not to lower our voices.

Evangelicals shouldn't be embarrassed to say boldly and clearly: Abortion and same-sex marriage are uniquely heinous sins. They rattle the foundations of a civilized society. They take a culture in a dreadful direction. We haven't been wrong to say so. We aren't fanatics.

And I'm not referring here so much to the young women caught in the anguish of an unexpected pregnancy or folks bewildered by their sexual identity. I'm talking mostly about a society that goes all out to tell such people that what they're doing is just fine. There's forgiveness for individual sinners. There's judgment for societies that lead them astray.

It's true that we evangelicals sometimes haven't been as zealous as we ought in fighting racism, abuse of the environment, and poverty. But on all those fronts and more, we're at least facing the right direction. We're sometimes slow.

But here's the difference: What evangelical do you know who says insensitivity to the poor should be promoted? What evangelical leader is calling for more racism? Who advocates the uncontrolled plundering of the environment?

That is exactly the kind of cheerleading that is going on for abortion and same-sex marriage. Whole movements and organizations devote themselves to telling us how good abortion and same-sex marriage are for society. It now is expected that Barack Obama feature on his speaking schedule, as he did on June 26, a New York fundraising dinner for the Democratic Gay and Lesbian Leadership Council—where the news account reports casually that Obama helped the homosexual lobby raise $1 million in just one evening.

But here's the core of the matter. To be robustly and consistently anti-abortion is at the very same time to cast your vote for environmental sensitivity, against racism, and for economic justice. These are not independent, isolated packages.

It's hard to see how anyone can claim to be a protector of the environment and not put a high priority on the preservation of human babies. To defend a focus on the future of polar bears and whales, while asking evangelicals to get less noisy about infant humans, is an embarrassing contradiction.

Similarly, keep in mind that abortion is one of the most racist of all social causes in history. Minorities don't just happen incidentally to be targeted by the practice of abortion. The history of Planned Parenthood and similar organizations is racist to the core—as is their current practice.

And no economist can look at the loss of 50 million American babies over the last 45 years and not wince at the impact of such a drain on the economic vitality of our society. Today's poor Americans are poorer than they would have been if we'd taken care to preserve enough consumers—and workers—to fill a state one-and-a-half times as big as California. Tomorrow's elderly will worry about Social Security more than they would have with 50 million more contributors to the system.

So stop apologizing for having focused on a single issue. Don't let the "Evangelical Manifesto" or anyone else shame you into an overly narrow self-image. It's the folks promoting causes like abortion and same-sex marriage who are the real "single issue" fanatics, falsely teaching that you can mess with just one or two aspects of life without upsetting the balance God so wondrously installed in His creation order. We need to expose that lie for the tragic falsehood that it is—and to teach the next generation what a very bad bargain they have been asked to accept.

http://www.worldmag.com/articles/14153

Thursday, July 17, 2008

VERY IMPORTANT MESSAGE FROM RAY COMFORT AND KIRK CAMERON



Way of the Master is an amazing blessing to those of us in other countries through the radio show, tv show, and their myriad of resources (many of which are copywrite free). I know Ray Comfort personally and can say that he is a man who shuns extravagance and that ethos filters through the whole ministry. Ray has avoided asking for financial support for many years as he cringes somewhat at the thought of doing anything other than preaching the Gospel. But it takes a lot more fuel to run the machine these days and I believe it's high time we give back to a ministry that has given so much to the furtherance of the Gospel, to a ministry that's heartbeat is and always has been evangelism, and to a ministry staffed by people who are the "real deal" and live what they teach. If you want to sow somewhere where you know that the money will get to the frontlines of evangelism/mission then your financial support will be well spent here.

My Umbilical Cord to the Mother Ship of Good Doctrine

Living in Denmark, where finding a church that faithfully preaches the Gospel is extremely difficult and expository teaching went the way of the dodo bird a long time ago, leaves me extremely dependant on the internet to provide Spiritual food. None more so than Wretched Radio. It is my umbilical cord to the mothership of sound doctrine. Hosted by Todd Friel this show is loaded with witnessing encounters, great preaching, apologetics, humor, satire, and a willingness to tackle any subject that most "Christian media" avoids such as exposing and biblically examining false teaching.

This show captivates some and offends others. Todd would have to be the worlds most theologically sound comedian. He gets up the nose of atheists so much that there is even a legion of atheist listeners who want nothing else than to call in and argue with him. Personally, I think he does a great job of articulating biblical truth coupled with a willingness to reason on almost any subject and always marking a clear line of distinction between essential doctrine and secondary issues.

Not everyone agrees with Todd on everything but that has never been the point of this radio show. Listen to it to find out what's happenng in the world with Christianity, how to witness, and where to track down good resources. This show has pointed me in the direction of good preaching and teaching so many times. It is my umbilical cord to the mother ship of sound doctrine.

You can join the "Wretched Club" and download podcasts here

They are currently raising support for the program which has an estimated worldwide audience of 2.5 million. I heartily recommend supporting the program

Here is a sample of the program where Todd Friel reviews the book "UnChristian"

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

The Bottom Line with Mission - God's Glory

I hear a lot of people, when talking about mission, about having a heart for the lost. But there is one thing that precedes it . . .



Ohhh how worthy is our Creator of all blessing and honor and glory and praise

Preach and preach for His glory

To hear the whole sermon go here:
http://www.onceuponacross.com/sermonaudio.html

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

New to The Bottom Line - Self esteem Therapy

Just in case you go to a church where your self esteem gets massaged and you're beginning to develop and overly high view of yourself then allow self help guru Paul Washer to minister to you



This is why the blood of the Lamb is so precious.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Echoes of the Reformation

Western Europe, the heartland of the Reformation 500 years ago, is now the heartland of secular humanism. It is a culture that has forgotten their Creator and the biblical truths that the Reformers bled and died for all those centuries ago. Everything good you can find in Europe stems from the Reformation. It is what took Europe out of the dark ages and gave birth to the arts, the sciences, industrial prosperity, medical breakthroughs, increases in life expectancy, faithfulness in marriage, and most importantly an explosion of preaching of the Christian Gospel. It was a truly great revival, as preachers thundered that salvation only came by grace alone, through faith alone, on God's Word alone, because of Christ alone.

The rise of Darwinism coupled with ungodly men who called themselves "liberal theologians" all conspired to undermine the authority of the Bible. This liberalism was a cancer that Europe has never recovered from. Like in Romans 1 the people exchanged the worship of the Creator for a humanistic deifying of the self. Today in Denmark, like in most of Western Europe, people are drowning in their own affluence, bowing before the Baals of self esteem, success, and sensuality. Tragically, many of the small fellowships that remain have bought into this lie and preach a gospel more focussed on life enhancement than saving damned souls.

Out of this darkness there may be some light. With the advent of cyberspace, young people over here who hunger for truth are able to tap into the teaching and preaching of great modern reformers residing outside of Europe like Paul Washer, John Piper, John MacArthur, and Ray Comfort. My precious brother in Christ Mikael Thomsen is not known by many people in Denmark let alone the rest of the world. But we pray that the message he burns with will travel great distances and into a great many hearts to the glory of Almighty God. This video is a 6 minute sermon jam in danish (with english subtitles) to give you a taste of his preaching and encourage you that it may not be too late for Europe. May you hear echoes of the Reformation . . .



Pray for Mikael and all the disciples of Jesus Christ in Europe. We're not in it for the popularity.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

The Day I Came Out (Part 3)

The Battlefront of the Conscience (continued from yesterday)

The atheist can deny all he wants and try to argue against God's existence from an intellectual standpoint. It is both foolish and futile for the Christian to war on this front because knowledge is not the issue and some atheists are a lot smarter than I am. But try as he may, the atheist cannot explain why his conscience opposes his human nature. But we know why because God's Word tells us that God's law is written on everybodies heart and our knowledge of right and wrong testifies both to God's existence, and man's alienation from this God.

Rom 2:14 For when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do what the law requires, they are a law to themselves, even though they do not have the law.
Rom 2:15 They show that the work of the law is written on their hearts, while their conscience also bears witness, and their conflicting thoughts accuse or even excuse them.

"The evidence is not the problem Niels, it's because you love your sin too much". Niels, the atheist, stood there staring at me (actually he was sitting). I was at Defcon One preparing myself for a flying fist coming my way at any moment. I could see that my comment had really detonated a bomb somewhere inside of Niels. But then, suddenly he looked down somewhat embarrassed and said "I guess that's true".

From there I pleaded with Niels to look into the mirror of God's moral law and see his sinfulness. I reminded him that he will answer to the Creator one day Who sees everything he has ever done, spoken, and even thought. Niels could see that he had lied, stolen, lusted (which is adultery in God's eyes), and hated (murder in God's eyes), and that if the Bible is true then he deserved Hell. From there I had a reference point to make sense of the Cross and the hope of the resurrected Christ.

It seems ironic that in a world with so many "seeker sensitive" mega churches built on a catch cry of "relevance" that they have neglected to fully explain the universal guilt of mankind. I can't think of anything more relevant than the fact that "all have sinned". Sure it might get mentioned from time to time, but rarely is it explained. Sin by definition is transgression of God's law (I John 3:4) and I fail to see how an individual could fathom their sinfulness without an understanding of God's law.

Niels was shaken but not stirred to repentance, at least for now. But at least he now goes to sleep at night no longer deluded that his unbelief is based on lack of proof but rather his love of sin. I hope he wrestles with this reality and that it will ultimately drive him to his knees crying out for salvation. Pray for Niels, and for boldness in the mission field of atheism, and for wisdom to fight the battles that matter.

Reasoning from sin, righteousness, and judgment is effective with all sinners. Because they all have a common Maker, and what He says about them is always true.

Go Back To Part 2
Go Back To Part 1

Friday, July 11, 2008

The Day I Came Out (Part 2)

In the Trenches with an Atheist

In part 1 I discussed my recent adventure of going outside the four walls of a church building to do some open air preaching at a rock festival in Denmark. But there is another story from that day about a witnessing encounter with an atheist called Niels that I want to recount.

Yesterday this witnessing encounter was quickened to my memory as I helped a friend of mine Jens-Peter with renovating his house. We were making very good time so he stopped to ask me some questions regarding how I witness to people who don't believe in God. His assumption was that reasoning of sin and righteousness and judgment with a complete heathen would be a waste of time because they reject God's existence. Nothing could be further from the truth.

As I was handing out Gospel tracts (at the rock festival) a guy (Niels) spoke to me in an Australian accent. It turned out that he was Danish but had spent a year living down under. We got chatting about Australia and traded stories. He then asked me about the tracts I was handing out and I told him they had the answer to the million dollar question (it was a million dollar bill). He asked me what the million dollar question was and I asked if he knew where he would go when he died. It turned out he was an atheist and I started witnessing by revealing the proof of God's existence through creation.

Always in the back of my mind is the truth that the atheist already has knowledge of God but suppresses it in unrighteousness. This is why I didn't invest time in dazzling Niels with wizz bang apologetics (I'm not smart enough for the wizz bang apologetics anyway) concerning God's existence when the issue was not one of knowledge but of sin.

Rom 1:18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;
Rom 1:19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath showed it unto them.
Rom 1:20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:
Rom 1:21 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.

These verses from Romans 1 tell us "that which may be known of God is manifest" in the unbeliever "for God hath shown it unto them". They are holding "the truth in unrighteousness". And what is it that testifies God's existence to sinful men? Verse 20 tells us the answer. The "invisible" things of God are "clearly seen" in God's creation "even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse". Put simply, the creation compellingly testifies to the Creator God Himself. I am not opposed to apologetics but in a situation like this, persuasion is not the problem. The atheist already has knowledge of God's existence and time is better spent trying to awaken this knowledge rather than try and win an argument with him. Because the atheist's problem is not a lack of proof concerning God's existence, but rather one of human pride and a love of sin.

As I spoke with Niels he told me that he didn't believe the witness of creation. Trusting God's word I then stepped out in faith and said something quite provocative to him. I told him "the evidence is not the problem Niels, it's because you love your sin too much". Time stood still for a moment as I beheld the shock on his face, I prepared myself to duck in case his fist came hurtling my way. One thing was for sure - now I had Niels' undivided attention!

To be continued tomorrow - The Battlefront of the Conscience

Go On To Part 3
Go Back To Part 1

Thursday, July 10, 2008

God's Directions v Man's Inventions

Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools (Romans 1:21-22).

This article from the Washington Post.

Let My People Go, AIDS Profiteers
By Sam L. Ruteikara
Monday, June 30, 2008;

KAMPALA, Uganda -- The President's Emergency Plan for HIV-AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) has been mired in the Senate for months. Last week finally brought signs that a vote, and passage, could be near. The program would cost $50 billion -- that's $165 from each American to fight AIDS, or $1.3 billion from New York City alone. But will the money allocated for AIDS stop the spread of the virus in sub-Saharan Africa, where 76 percent of the world's HIV-AIDS deaths occurred last year?

Not if the dark dealings I've witnessed in Africa continue unchecked. In the fight against AIDS, profiteering has trumped prevention. AIDS is no longer simply a disease; it has become a multibillion-dollar industry.

In the late 1980s, before international experts arrived to tell us we had it all "wrong," we in Uganda devised a practical campaign to prevent the spread of HIV. We recognized that population-wide AIDS epidemics in Africa were driven by people having sex with more than one regular partner. Therefore, we urged people to be faithful. Our campaign was called ABC (Abstain, or Be Faithful, or use Condoms), but our main message was: Stick to one partner. We promoted condoms only as a last resort.

Because we knew what to do in our country, we succeeded. The proportion of Ugandans infected with HIV plunged from 21 percent in 1991 to 6 percent in 2002. But international AIDS experts who came to Uganda said we were wrong to try to limit people's sexual freedom. Worse, they had the financial power to force their casual-sex agendas upon us.

PEPFAR calls for Western experts to work as equal partners with African leaders on AIDS prevention. But as co-chair of Uganda's National AIDS-Prevention Committee, I have seen this process sabotaged. Repeatedly, our 25-member prevention committee put faithfulness and abstinence into the National Strategic Plan that guides how PEPFAR money for our country will be spent. Repeatedly, foreign advisers erased our recommendations. When the document draft was published, fidelity and abstinence were missing.

And somehow, a suspicious statistic attacking marriage appeared. The plan states that the HIV infection rate among married couples is 42 percent, twice as high as the rate among prostitutes. Our requests for the source of this statistic were repeatedly ignored. In fact, the 2004-05 Ugandan HIV/AIDS Sero-Behavioral Survey found that HIV prevalence among married couples is only 6.3 percent, far lower than infection rates among widowed (31.4 percent) or divorced (13.9 percent) Ugandans.

When Washington insiders were alerted to these scandals, the words "abstain" and "be faithful" were quietly reinserted into the plan -- on paper. But that doesn't guarantee these methods will be implemented or promoted. Meanwhile, the dubious marriage statistic remains.

As fidelity and abstinence have been subverted, Uganda's HIV rates have begun to tick back up.

Western media have been told this renewed surge of HIV infection is because there are "not enough condoms in Uganda," even though we have many more condoms now than we did in the early 1990s, when our HIV rates began to decline. Condom promotions have failed in Africa, mostly because fewer than 5 percent of people use condoms consistently with regular partners. Indeed, the loudest HIV-prevention message in Africa is "universal access" to condoms, testing, anti-retroviral treatment, and assorted other drugs and devices. All these commodities must be transported, stored, distributed, advertised and resupplied endlessly.

Meanwhile, effective HIV prevention methods, such as urging Africans to stick to one partner, don't qualify for lucrative universal-access status.

Do not misunderstand me: Treatment is good. But for every African who gains access to HIV treatment, six become newly infected. To treat one AIDS patient with life-prolonging anti-retroviral drugs costs more than $1,000 a year. Our successful ABC campaign cost just 29 cents per person each year.

International suppliers make broad, oversimplified statements such as "You can't change Africans' sexual behavior." While it's true that you can't change everybody, you don't have to. If the share of men having three or more sexual partners in a year drops from 15 percent to 3 percent, as happened in Uganda between 1989 and 1995, HIV infection rates will plunge. It is that simple.

We, the poor of Africa, remain silenced in the global dialogue. Our wisdom about our own culture is ignored.

Telling men and women to keep sex sacred -- to save sex for marriage and then remain faithful -- is telling them to love one another deeply with their whole hearts. Most HIV infections in Africa are spread by sex outside of marriage: casual sex and infidelity. The solution is faithful love.

So hear my plea, HIV-AIDS profiteers. Let my people go. We understand that casual sex is dear to you, but staying alive is dear to us. Listen to African wisdom, and we will show you how to prevent AIDS.

The Rev. Sam L. Ruteikara is co-chair of Uganda's National AIDS-Prevention Committee.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Faithful Are the Wounds of a Friend

I recently copped some criticism from one of my very closest friends over my post concerning Tony Campolo. He felt that a stern response was warranted but was fearful (probably due to prior experiences of bitter response) about doing so because of the friction he didn't want to generate. We really need to question our friendships if they can't withstand loving correction. I assured my friend that I always want him to feel at liberty to rebuke me when necessary and within the bounds of Scripture.

Brothers and Sisters, I fear that this is symptomatic of the therapeutic age we live in. We live in a day where an individual's self esteem has become sacred and scape goats abound for our own sinful actions. Shepherds fear confrontation because even the smallest rebuke seems to generate long term ill feeling and it is not uncommon for church members to feel hostility from their pastor in response to being biblically critiqued. People may say that they have a high view of Scripture but only so long as they can maintain diplomatic immunity.

Why are we so surprised that we need rebuke in the light of our inherent sinful nature. Spurgeon said that if someone rebukes you for something you haven't done, receive it anyway because the day will come when the shoe will fit.

Proverbs 27:6 says this "Faithful are the wounds of a friend; profuse are the kisses of an enemy." I contend that one of the strongest measures of a person's godliness is the way they take rebuke. One who longs to be conformed to Christ embraces the rebuke of a genuine brother because he fears offending God more than being offended personally. And beware those commendations from the enemy. I've seen more than one Christian leader taken down by his inner circle of yes men. I've also heard plenty of sermons against negativity (chapter and verse please). If by negativity they mean people who dare to disagree with them then it is a suicidal philosophy for they become isolated from the precious wounds that help us conform to Christ.

In closing I want to throw one other thought out there. Jesus laid down His life and went as a sheep to the slaughter - how are you doing in the area of dying to self. Jesus went ballistic when His Father's house became a den of thieves - are you more offended when people insult you or when they blaspheme God. I contend this is a good test of one's meekness.

I will not comment on the Tony Campolo post here - I'll do that later. I don't want to distract from the point I'm trying to make here because Pastors have a hard enough job to do without having to tread on the egotistical egg shells of an insecure congregation. Please - embrace the wounds that a true Christian brother or sister delivers so that we can become more like Christ.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Charismatic Credit Card Machine

My family and I attended a Pentecostal fellowship located near our home last sunday. One thing synonymous with Pentecostal churches is dancing or as a friend of mine once called it "the Pentecostal two-step". I know this is not everyones cup of tea but I don't think it is an issue worth arguing over.

Ironically, dancing almost got banned at my wedding by a faction of old timers from the Pentecostal tradition. A tense stand-off brewed as we faced the very real prospect of some cessationalists being forbidden from dancing! I can still remember from my early days as a Christian being told (tongue in cheek) by a Pentecostal preacher that he didn't believe in pre-marital sex because it might lead to dancing. Though I jest, I think the issue has very much to do with the idea that one form is dancing before the Lord while the other is dancing with the opposite sex - at least I thought so until my pastor banned me from doing the "moonwalk".

But the "Pentecostal two-step" is a dance that has been sanctioned by the movement. I have always contended, however, that church members should be required to show proof of their ability to do the "two step" without impeding the "hand raising" gestures of others before they kick up their heels in a public gathering.

All of these memories came flooding back last sunday when I realised that they had installed a credit card facility in the meeting hall. I was actually seated two rows behind the machine as I witnessed the surreal images during offering time (music playing) of people lining up in front of the machine with credit card in hand all the while doing the "two step". I then watched with amazement as people managed to coordinate operating the machine and doing the "two step" at the same time. This feat was simply beyond my athletic ability so I opted for the far less hazardous "money in the bucket" method.

But on a deeper level I must confess to cringing as I witnessed these goings on. The idea of the machine in the church building bothered me and I don't know why, perhaps it seemed irreverent. Maybe I'm getting old fashioned and should start a modernised Amish community with VHS players and Analogue TV. Is it me who has the problem here or is there something wrong that I can't put my finger on. Please comment on this - I want to hear your thoughts

Sunday, July 6, 2008

The Day I Came Out (Part 1)

The four walls of a church building are a great way to conceal the message God gave His Church to tell a dying world full of hell bound people about their only hope of rescue.

This story is about the day I came out of these four walls and took the message of the glorious Gospel to the public place.

Summertime in Denmark, where the reformers trod 500 years ago, and what can we expect to find outside the four walls of a small (very small) church building. For one - a rock festival. I've always maintained that I love the summers in Denmark - it's just the other 11 months I have a problem with. I decided to head down to a nearby music festival, where thousands of young people were indulging in activities designed to speed up the death process, find a public place, stand on a soap box . . . actually my tool box, and preach the Good News.

I always get very nervous when I do this because it's one thing to make a spectacle of yourself, but the indifference and apathy can be quite suffocating in europe. When I got there I saw hundreds of people lying around drunk, hung over, or trying to drink away their hangover, many of whom were smoking things that didn't look like normal cigarettes. When I saw what was going on around me I burned with extra urgency to tell these people about their Creator, about sin, righteousness, judgment, the Cross, resurrection, repentance, saving faith and eternal life.

We walked past a tent where there was police sitting. I assumed they were there to deal with drug use and drunkenness, or maybe if someone attacked me . . . yeeeaaaah right!!

I found a place outside the venue on a local road where hundreds of people were walking back and forth between the campsite and the concert venue. I stood up and started preaching and managed to draw a crowd of about 25 people or so. Some of the faces seemed to express genuine conviction, but then another face of conviction appeared in the corner of my eye. It was a guy dressed in a police uniform walking my way and it was not the walk of a man responding to an altar call. As he came closer I could see that it was not so much a look of conviction but more of a desire to see me convicted - legally speaking.

The policeman arrived just in time to hear the end of the message. The only similarity between this and a church service was that he wasn't planning on inviting me back. We got tracts out to some of the gathering before the long arm of the law told me I had to stop and leave right now. I told him I thought it was a public place (we were on a pedestrian thoroughfare) and I wasn't impeding traffic flow. He told me that it wasn't public (though he didn't say who owned it) and I was making people embarrassed. Ummm . . . hello, who's the minority group here??? He then told me something that excited me telling me to go and preach in "speakers corner". My eyes lit up as I asked where this speakers corner was - "London" he replied.

Please pray for those of us who preach in this part of the world.



This video captures the reason why we preach an do mission. Ultimately it is to bring glory to a glorious Savior.

To hear the full sermon "Ten Shekels and a Shirt" by Paris Reidhead go here:
http://www.onceuponacross.com/sermonaudio.html

It is one of the most profound sermons I ever heard and what really stirred me to preach for God's glory.

Go On To Part 2

Friday, July 4, 2008

Describing the Indescribable

The late SM Lockridge was known for thundering great sermons from the pulpit of his church in San Diego. This captures some of that as He tries in vain to describe Jesus Christ.



I wish I could describe Him to you!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

The Bottom Line Goes Ecumenical - Everybody Get's Mocked Equally

Interdenominational Light Bulb Changing

How many Calvinists does it take to change a light bulb?
None - God has predestined when the lights will be on and when they will be off.

How many Arminians does it take to change a light bulb?
Only one - but first the light bulb must make a decision for change.

How many Charismatics does it take to change a light bulb?
One - because his hands are already up in the air anyway.

How many Baptists does it take to change a light bulb?
CHANGE???!!!

How many Pentecostals does it take to change a light bulb?
ten - one to change the light bulb and nine to pray against the spirit of darkness.

How many TV evangelists does it take to change a light bulb?
One - but for the message of the light to continue please sow your seed . . .

How many Fundamentalists does it take to change a light bulb?
Only one - because any more would be compromise and ecumenical.

How many Charismatics does it take to change a light bulb?
None - unless the Lord leads you to change it.

How many Dispensationists does it take to change a light bulb?
Two - one to change the bulb and one to keep the promises to the old bulb (ok a little abstract)

How many Promise Keepers does it take to change a light bulb?
None - unless coach MacCartney says it's manly to do so.

How many Hyper Calvinists does it take to change a light bulb?
None - only God knows if the light bulb is one of the elect and every Calvinist knows that only God can change a light bulb.

How many Episcopalians does it take to change a light bulb?
None - they assume darkness is the nature of the bulb but it would be harmful and disrespectful to violate the personality of the bulb.

How many Evolutionists does it take to change a light bulb?
None - it will change by itself.

How many Lutherans does it take to change a light bulb?
Seventeen - five to form a commitee to find and nominate nine people for an open discussion on the issues of bulb changing so they can appoint a final commitee of three people to draft a final resolution about the bulb change of which one will change the bulb, one will supervise the bulb changing procedure, and the other will return a month later to check the performance of the bulb.

How many Seventh Day Adventists does it take to change a light bulb?
Just one - as long as it isn't on Saturday.

How many Atheists does it take to change a light bulb?
One - but they're still in darkness.

How many Seeker Friendlies does it take to change a light bulb?
Is that what the light bulb wants?

How many Emergents does it take to change a light bulb?
It all depends on what reality the light bulb chooses to live in.

How many "Liberal Christians" does it take to change a light bulb?
111 - 27 to reconstruct the dilapidated house that a burnt out bulb would be found in, 15 to set up a food and clothes pantry for those working on the house and those who will soon live in the house, 8 scholars to think of new ways of understanding light, three more scholars to discuss how much we've misunderstood the bulb, 32 to love the old bulb in the same way that Jesus loved bulbs, and 26 to love the new bulb the same way.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

The Smokescreen of the Social gospel

One of the great long term masquerades of "evangelical Christianity" has been none other than Tony Campolo. For years now he has somehow managed to persuade a lot of prominent evangelicals of his evangelical-ness by simply labelling himself as an "evangelical" (if only the same principle worked for being a lawyer or a doctor). Admittedly the term evangelical gets a good working over these days but one would assume that it would mean that you would understand the primary reason why Jesus came . . . . ummmmm earth to Dr Campolo, John 3:16 will give you a big clue . . .

Listen to this audio as Todd Friel from "Way of the Master Radio" sheds light on Tony Campolo's dodgy doctrines.



Noone is questioning whether Christians should care for the poor. William Booth (founder of the Salvation Army) springs to mind as someone who tirelessly labored to care for the poor whilst being preoccupied with matters of eternity. Could some person with a basic grasp of Scripture please inform Tony Campolo that the poor person's basic problem is sin that needs forgiveness, and the rich person's basic problem is sin that needs forgiveness, and the poor person who benefits from a feeding program has a basic problem of sin that needs forgiveness. After all, the heart of the human problem is the problem of the human heart. Rich and poor will all die one day and unless they repent and trust the Savior they will burn in hell, rich and poor alike. Our primary mission is the ministry of reconciliation, not reconciliation of social inequality.

The great deception of the social gospel of Dr Campolo comes about because he is advocating something that a true Christian should do. The smokescreen is that caring for the poor becomes the Gospel when in reality it is a by product of a regenerate heart rather than the Gospel itself. Christian brother and sister - please watch out for that curve ball.

Perhaps at the root of all this lies a faulty understanding of regeneration. Perhaps the idea of decisional regeneration (being saved by saying a "sinners prayer") has led to the desire to try and labor in the area of motivating the "visible church" to good deeds. Perhaps if they understood that regeneration is a supernatural work of God that changes the human heart and causes us to walk in God's statutes then bleeding heart liberals like Tony Campolo might repent and start preaching the biblical Gospel, you know, the one that is the power of God unto salvation.

Eze 36:25-27 I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean from all your uncleannesses, and from all your idols I will cleanse you. And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules.