Thursday, October 30, 2008

Paul Washer is a Weapon - Shock and Awe

Paul Washer preached a stunning sermon at the Deeper Conference recently. It was such a joy to sit in person and hear his preaching live after downloading countless sermons from him. Brother Paul is the kind of preacher that's needed in western churches today. Someone who so desires to honor God and so loves people that he is willing to preach with the desperation of a man on death row every time he graces the pulpit.

Four days after the Deeper Conference, Paul Washer was back in Atlanta for another conference and delivered this stunner - Ten Indictments Against the Modern "Church". Strap yourself in for this two hour message that Tony "Lawman" Miano believes will go down as a landmark sermon even by Washer's high standards.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Fireproof Movie Review - A Triumph for the Gospel and Kirk Cameron

I just saw Fireproof and loved it. I DID NOT CRY . . . it was just that my eyes got teary when I pulled out a few nose hairs - that's my story and I'm stickin' to it.

I heard one criticism recently about how repentance wasn't mentioned in the movie. It's kind of like the book of Esther which doesn't mention God's Name but God's sovereign Hand is everywhere in the book of Esther. Repentance is not mentioned in Fireproof but it is written all over the movie and it comes across loud and clear. One of the strongest themes I think.

I must confess to always being bugged by how the majority of "Christian" movie projects employ actors who are not Christians. This is not the case with Firproof which employed a cast of volunteers from Sherwood Baptist Church in Albany Georgia and Kirk Cameron who is best known for his roles as Mike Seaver in Growing Pains and as Buck Williams in the Left Behind series. I count myself priveledged to know Kirk Cameron and am well aware that both he and his wife live out authentic Christian lives. They are the real deal and a short amount of time with them reveals how precious Jesus Christ is in their lives.

Here are some positives and negatives in an attempt to be even handed.

Negatives
1. I did think when that when Kirk's character was explaining becoming a Christian that saying "about your faith . . . I'm in" was a pretty corny and vague way of articulating the born again experience.
2. The idea of decisional regeneration seemed to be coming across in the first half of the movie (maybe I notice that as someone who accepted Calvin into my heart). However, I was glad to see the emphasis of God doing a transforming work of regenerating a sinful human heart later in the movie.
3. The movie should have contained a warning for sensitive viewers alerting them to several scenes of gratuitous violence inflicted on trash cans (but wow that must've been fun smashing that computer monitor, I envy Kirk for that scene).

Positives
1. The theme of repentance came across real strong.
2. The movie explained why God is angry at sinners.
3. The issue of pornography was handled clearly but discretely - that was really well done.
4. It did not preach "life enhancement" - just the opposite.
5. I loved how it showed that Caleb (Kirk's character) was not capable of changing until God changed him half way through the "love dare". It really shifted the emphasis away from the "love dare" and focussed on man's need for God's supernatural transforming work.
6. Chick Fil A product placement - gotta love that.
7. I was genuinely surprised by the stunt where they move the car just in time and the train knocks the guys helmet off. Was that real? That scene was seriously better and more realistic than action scenes in high budget movies.
8. The movie was loaded with some really powerful, profound, and well written scenes - these included:
(a) where Caleb sits there complaining about his wife ignoring his love as the cross looms in the background - loved that
(b) where the computer (where Caleb viewed pornography) was destroyed and replaced with flowers and the note "I love you more"
(c) when Caleb's father opens Caleb's eyes to his own depravity
(d) Romans 5:8 at the start of the closing credits
9. Those long closing credits - loved them, thanking everybody who helped in so many ways really spoke loud to me about the Church being the Church
10. Ray Comfort got his hands on the script - so obvious

Special Award for Outstanding Acting as a Stunt Double goes to:
Chelsea Noble Cameron (Kirk's real life wife) for the kissing scene. . . . or maybe it wasn't acting.

Please go and see this movie and learn something about the sanctity of marriage, Christ's love for His Church, and send a message to Hollywood that there is a large market for projects that advocate Christian values and biblical truth.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Foxes Book of Emergents With Hurt Feelings - Rob Bell (Part 6)

Rob Bell has a broad range as a teacher. His teaching ranges from misleading to illogical to stupid to hypocritical to heretical. Rob Bell recently made some comments in his latest book "God wants to Save Christians" concerning the war in Iraq. It s just a joke that he gets away with his blatant hypocrisy. There is a phony high ground of humility many emergents (including Bell) take where they claim that certainty is overrated and that it is arrogant to say we know truth or more importantly Scripture's explicit meaning. Here's this doozy of a quote from Brian McLaren (who is kind of like Rob Bell's Yoda):

If I seem to show too little respect for your opinions or thought, be assured I have equal doubts about my own, and I don’t mind if you think I am wrong. I’m sure I am wrong about many things, although I’m not sure exactly which things I’m wrong about. I’m even sure I’m wrong about what I think I’m right about in at least some cases. So wherever you think I’m wrong, you could be right.(Generous Orthodoxy)

This celebration of doubt and confusion is a common emergent theme. The only thing they are certain about is that fundamentalists are wrong - they are very certain about that! Here's my question - is it arrogant to believe that God is kind enough to make His plan of salvation knowable to a man as simple as myself?

Rob Bell and his wife Kristen had this to say about the authority of Scripture when speaking to Christianity Today in November 2004:

The Bells started questioning their assumptions about the Bible itself—"discovering the Bible as a human product," as Rob puts it, rather than the product of divine fiat. "The Bible is still in the center for us," Rob says, "but it's a different kind of center. We want to embrace mystery, rather than conquer it."

"I grew up thinking that we've figured out the Bible," Kristen says, "that we knew what it means. Now I have no idea what most of it means. And yet I feel like life is big again—like life used to be black and white, and now it's in color."


Clear as mud and heretical to boot. Now watch Rob Bell make the leap from heresy to hypocrisy as he "embraces the mystery" of the war in Iraq.

"We are fighting a war right now for oil. American soldiers and Iraqi civilians are getting killed today because they have a resource that (we) are addicted to. You know you are part of an empire when, in order to get a resource that literally fuels your empire, you will use violence... but when the American way becomes addicted to this comfort, and this comfort is dependent on a particular natural resource which we cannot provide enough of, we literally wage war to support our comfort and addiction.... It is hard for people to comprehend that our hands have blood on them, especially when some of the political rhetoric is "They're Evil, we're good" - that is absolutely destructive."

How does Rob Bell know this? Did Rick Warren give him a backstage pass to the Council on Foreign Relations? Or is he just speaking with authority on a subject he clearly knows very little about. As little as I know here is a little history

1991: Iraq invades Kuwait in an attempt to overtake them, this includes attacking Israel.

90's: Iraq refuses to cooperate with UN

1999: Iraq rejects UN Resolution

2000: Again rejects weapons inspection

2002: Again rejects weapons inspection

2002: US President George W. Bush addresses a special session of the UN, calls for multilateral action against Iraq. Iraq responds by announcing it will allow inspections unconditionally, but quickly retracts the offer, making it conditional on no new US resolutions.

2003: Hans Blix reports large amounts of illegal weapons unaccounted for, inspection not satisfied

2003: Arab Summit calls on Iraq to disarm, refuses. (http://www.mideastweb.org/iraqtimeline.htm)

Hmmmm so it's all about oil. I suggest Rob Bell take a break from his study of Rabbinical history and spend some time studying recent history.

Church goer - please don't buy into this emergent nonsense. God gave us a Bible that we can trust and know how to be reconciled to Him. Spend more time studying that and use it to cut through the fog of confusion that people like Rob Bell sprout.

Go On To Part 7
Go Back To Part 5
Go Back To Part 1

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Paul Washer Interviewed - Exciting News For Denmark

Wow! I mean WOW!! I got to interview Paul Washer. I have been so blessed by downloading so many of his sermons. What a priveledge to discuss many important issues we face in Denmark as a fledgling network of evangelists. It is just over an hour long but well worth the listen simply because of the powerful things Paul Washer has to say. He doesn't mess around when it comes to answering a question clearly.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Todd Friel - Germophobia With Good Theology

Todd Friel is a breath of fresh air in an overly sanitized "Christian media". He embraces the tough issues rather than avoiding them and in doing so can offend some people. Herein lies his charm, in my opinion, because he is not driven by pleasing his audience. Importantly Todd is never afraid to admit when he is wrrr . . . wrrro . . . wrrro . . . incorrect and always allows healthy debate in a show which covers hermeneutics to heretics and everything in between. There is even live on-air witnessing encounters between Todd or Ray Comfort and some unsuspecting, unregenerate sinner who needs the forgiveness found only in Christ. And let's face it, how many germophobic stand up comedians do you know who practice sound orthodox biblical doctrine all the while remaining within arms length of the nearest Purell dispenser. Todd is certainly one of a kind.

Living outside of the USA in Denmark I rely heavily on Todd's show "Way of the Master Radio" for good spiritual food. I have been addicted to it for almost 3 years now and our friendship has never extended beyond the cyberspace I use for downloading the podcasts. But this last week I had the great joy of going into the studio in person and meeting Todd. He recognised me and stooped down to give me a welcoming hug (Todd is at least 10 feet tall).

It was such a joy to fellowship with a like minded brother and Todd was warm and engaging all the way through. But it was when we went out witnessing in the Atlanta subway that Todd demonstrated his authentic Christianity. There were no tv cameras or radio microphones around as Todd graciously and lovingly shared the good news of Jesus Christ with people in places that I was scared to be. Todd drove me home and spoke some encouraging words as I partook of a sacred initiation rite - sanitizing my hands with Todd's bottle of Purell.

Todd Friel may be afraid of germs but he's not afraid to expose a heretic . . .

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Leaving On a Jet Plane

Here I am on a plane over the Atlantic flying to the USA for three weeks of intense evangelism experiences. First stop Atlanta where I’ll be attending the Deeper conference featuring speakers like Paul Washer, Ray Comfort, Ken Ham, Todd Friel, Johnny Hunt, Marshall Foster, Kirk Cameron, and Emeal “EZ” Zwayne. There won’t be a dull moment.

It will culminate on Saturday night with 500+ evangelists converging on the streets of downtown Atlanta to open air preach. The big Rap/Hip Hop awards night is happening in Atlanta on that night so who knows??!! Maybe I’ll get heckled by Eminem (sorry my computer doesn’t do back to front letters) and P Doggy and Snoop Daddy and Puff Diddy and Diddy Doggy and Puff Snoopy and ummmm . . . ok so I’m not so “jiggy with it”! What I mean is there’ll be lots of droopy drawers in downtown Atlanta on that night. Can’t wait!

Is there anyone out there who knows neutral gang colors for downtown Atlanta. If there’s one thing I’ve learnt about the USA it is that “Drive Thru” trumps “Drive By” every time. Mmmm I can taste that Chick Fil A already!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Monday, October 13, 2008

Foxes Book of Emergents With Hurt Feelings - Rob Bell (Part 5)

Wow, it has been spicy lately. I find it interesting and quite surpising that criticising Rick Warren or Tony Campolo or Brian McLaren draws little or no response but daring to criticize Rob Bell is like walking into a hornets nest. Can someone tell me why he is such a sacred cow especially in the light of his patently unbiblical teaching. This may highlight why there has been a large focus concerning Rob Bell in my series titled "Foxes Book of Emergents with Hurt Feelings".

While heretical, he is not even in the same league as Brian McLaren. But it is his popularity and influence that warrants such a focussed response - especially among youth. His Nooma series is very seductive with enough truth mixed in to smokescreen the real agenda. Sure there is truth there but even a broken clock gets it right twice a day. Here is a clip of Rob Bell's disgusting Nooma video called "Bullhorn Guy" where he rebukes open air preachers for preaching the true Gospel. It is very alarming that many modern church goers cannot exercise enough biblical discernment to see through this rubbish.




Here is a wonderful send up of the Bullhorn video called "Bullwhip Guy". These guys nail the sheer unbiblical lunacy of what Rob Bell is passing off as "Christianity"


My series on the emergents is not yet finished because there is so much more that must be said particularly in the light of their extreme activism in rallying behind pro murder Presidential candidate Barack Obama.

There is also many other things more important than the financial crisis to discuss at the moment including the plight of the persecuted church in India right now as they face horrendous hindu violence. Please pray for them.

I am leaving for the USA tomorrow to attend some evangelism conferences and training. I will be attending the "Deeper" conference in Atlanta (Oct 17-18) and the Way of the Master Ambassadors Academy in LA (Oct 30-Nov1). I hope to see some blog readers at these events - keep an eye out for me. My posting may be sporadic over the next four weeks. Please hang in there - there's more to come.

Go On To Part 6
Go Back To Part 4
Go Back To Part 1

Saturday, October 11, 2008

The True Biblical Gospel - Examine Yourself!

There has been a lot of discussion in recent posts concerning true and false gospels. I have decided to put on the table the Gospel message I have prepared for my e-cards I am sending out this Christmas. By True Gospel I don't mean style of writing or personality. Both of these are extensions of myself. By true Gospel I am talking about the theology of the message which must NEVER change.

Please read on and take the time to do what the Apostle Paul told the Corinthian Church in his second letter "Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?--unless indeed you fail to meet the test!" (II Corinthians 13:5). (The numbers represent corresponding Bible verses that you will find at the bottom of the post).

God rest ye merry, gentlemen
Let nothing you dismay
Remember, Christ, our Saviour
Was born on Christmas day
To save us all from Satan's power
When we were gone astray
O tidings of comfort and joy,
Comfort and joy
O tidings of comfort and joy


I wish to extend warm greetings to you and your family this Christmas. This is a time of year when people often stop and reflect on the big questions in life. As a Christian it is a time of year that has great significance to me and this year feel greatly convicted to articulate what Christmas is all about. I hope and pray that you would take the time to consider these eternal truths that concern each and every one of us.

The Christmas Carol “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen” really captures the true message and meaning of Christmas. You have probably heard this Christmas Carol sung many times throughout your life. It often seems that when we sing songs as ritual or tradition we fail to stop and reflect on the words we are speaking and what they really mean. Would you be so kind as to take the time to journey with me for several minutes and examine the meaning and the message of this timeless song.

God rest ye merry, gentlemen

A modern reading of this line could say “God make you mighty, gentlemen”. It is an uplifting statement of good news. The message of Jesus Christ is often referred to as the “Good News”. This song actually explains what this unbelievable good news is. But the “good news” makes no sense without understanding the “bad news” and so it is with this song.

Let nothing you dismay

Nothing lasts forever and sadness and grief will inevitably come our way. For many, our joy comes from the relationships we have with those we love. But the truth of the ultimate statistic (that one out of one people die)1 will ultimately track us down during the course of our lives and bring to an end that which we cherish most. The line “let nothing you dismay” is telling us that this “good news” can override any disaster or tragedy that will strike us in this life. In a world where everything good seems only temporary, the joy of this song is built on something everlasting that death can never take away.

Remember Christ our Saviour was born on Christmas day

In a festive season now overrun with commercialism, many people have forgotten the first six letters of the word Christmas. Christ is the reason for the season. Jesus Christ was and is God, the creator of the universe, appearing in human form.2 That’s right, God walked on this planet over just over 2000 years ago. This song describes Him as our Saviour. This should prompt the question “save or rescue us from what?” A surf lifeguard is sometimes referred to as a rescuer. Even though he is a rescuer, the person who needs rescuing usually has to realise they are in trouble before they call for help. The same goes for us as people. We all need to have our eyes opened to the very serious problem that faces each and everyone of us before we too can cry out to be rescued or “saved”. So what is this serious problem?

To save us all from Satan’s power

Many of us have heard about the story of Adam and Eve. You may think of it as an amusing fairy tale. But Jesus spoke of Adam as a real person3 who set in motion a disastrous chain of events. The Bible tells us that God made everything perfect in the beginning here on earth and He made Adam and Eve as the very first people to rule over this perfect world.4 There was no death or suffering and EVERYTHING WAS GOOD. But Satan (or the Devil) was able to deceive the very first man and woman into rebelling against God and surrendering their rule here on earth.5 This rebellion is what is sometimes called original sin. Sin is the breaking of God’s moral laws6 that He has set in place and written on our consciences.7 This sinfulness became mankind’s nature and was passed on from generation to generation. It is the virus that contaminates the whole human race including you and me.8 It is revealed when our thoughts, words, and actions violate our own conscience. Even one of Jesus’ well known followers said “why is it that I continually do what I know is wrong and continually avoid doing what I know is right”.9 The problem of the human heart is the heart of the human problem. The Bible tells us that sin is the reason that we all die.10 Jesus came to save us from Satan’s power which is the curse of sin and death.

When we were gone astray

Please bear with me as I labor this point because it is so important that we grasp what this line is saying.

People often ask the question that if there is a loving God then why is there so much evil in the world today? The problem with this question is that it is built upon a wrong view of humanity. The Bible tells us that many men “proclaim their own goodness”11 and are “clean in their own eyes”12 but that we have all “sinned and fallen short”13 of God’s standard. This is far more serious than most of us realise. God, being good, is a just and righteous judge and He must punish the Hitlers, Stalins, and Bin Ladins of this world, otherwise He would be corrupt. Because we are all made in God’s image we crave justice to be done with the wrong things we see in this world. An infinite God must punish infinitely and that is why there is a Hell, and why Jesus warned so much about it.14

But when God’s judgement comes to this earth it won’t stop with murderers, rapists, and paedophiles. He must also deal with liars, thieves, blasphemers…… even every wrong thought. As painful as it is, it is always good to examine ourselves in the light of God’s justice system. Martin Luther said that we should hold up the mirror of the Ten Commandments15 so we can see ourselves as we really are and what our real need is.

Have you ever lied? The Bible says that all liars will end up in Hell.16 If that seems overly harsh then consider this: If I lie to my daughter there is nothing she can do to me. But if I lie to my wife then my sleeping arrangements are likely to shift from the bedroom to the garage. If I lie to my employer then I’ll probably get fired. If I lie to the government then I can end up in jail. Though the crime never changed in each situation, the level of punishment did in proportion to the level of authority being dealt with. How serious is it then to lie to an infinite and perfect God?

Have you ever stolen anything? The Bible says that no thief can inherit God’s kingdom.17

Have you ever used God’s name as a swear word? The Bible tells us that God will not hold anyone guiltless who blasphemes His Holy Name.18 God will judge every word spoken.

Have you ever committed sexual immorality outside of the confines of marriage? Jesus took it even further to tell us that even a lustful thought makes us guilty of adultery of the heart.19 God will even judge our thought life. Nothing is hidden from Him.20

If you are anything like me and have broken those four commandments then you are a liar, a thief, a blasphemer, and an adulterer at heart. And that is just four of the Ten Commandments. And here’s the killer punch, if you break just one commandment then you are guilty of all of them anyway.21 The line of the song “when we had gone astray” means that every single person has strayed from God because of our own exceeding sinfulness.22

It was when I examined myself in the light of God’s standard that I realized that if God is good then He should send me to Hell for my crimes against Him. I stopped asking why there is so much evil in the world, and started asking why God has not yet poured out His judgement and justice on me already. And this is why, because it is not God’s will to send anyone to Hell.23 God is holding back His judgement because He is merciful and giving us time to repent of our crimes against Him. He loves us so much that He made a way for us to be reconciled to Him and be “Saved” from His judgement.24 This is the amazing “good news”.

O tidings of comfort and joy, Comfort and joy, O tidings of comfort and joy

It is the “good news” that brings us tidings of comfort and joy. At Christmas 2007 years ago, God appeared in human form as a baby born in Israel. Jesus Christ came on a mission to fulfill the law that we had broken and then pay the penalty for our crimes with His own blood.25 The cross He died on was meant for you and me. The only way God could make reconciliation possible was by living a perfect sinless life as a human and then paying for our sin with His own blood.26 He then rose from the dead defeating the curse of sin and death because of His own righteousness27 and ascended up into heaven to prepare a place for those who follow Him.28 God showed us His love in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.29 To receive God’s free gift of payment for our sin and inherit eternal life we must repent of our sin and put our complete trust in Him to save us30 from His terrible day of judgement.31 To repent is to turn away from our sin and apologise to God with genuine sorrow. To trust in Him means to put our complete hope in Jesus work on the cross because no other prophet or religious leader has done that for you. Trust in Him like you would in a parachute when jumping from 10000 feet. If we confess our sin He is faithful to forgive us and clean us from all unrighteousness32. That is tidings of comfort and joy.

I hope and pray that you would consider these things as we approach the season when Christ was born.

You are in my prayers
Cameron

PS The greatest gift you’ll find this Christmas won’t be under a shiny tree with pretty lights. You’ll find it at the foot of a blood stained wooden cross.

1 Hebrews 9:27
2 John 1:1,14
3 Mark 10:6
4 Genesis 1
5 Genesis 3
6 I John 3:4
7 Romans 2:15
8 Romans 3:23
9 Romans 7:15
10 Ezekiel 18:4
11 Proverbs 20:6
12 Proverbs 16:2
13 Romans 3:23
14 Matthew 10:28
15 Exodus 20:1-17
16 Revelation 21:8
17 I Corinthians 6:10
18 Exodus 20:7
19 Matthew 5:28
20 Ecclesiastes 12:14
21 James 2:10
22 Isaiah 53:6
23 II Peter 3:9
24 John 3:16
25 II Corinthians 5:21
26 I Peter 1:18-19
27 Romans 4:25
28 John 14:2
29 Romans 5:8
30 Acts 20:21
31 Romans 5:9
32 I John 1:9

Friday, October 10, 2008

Foxes Book of Emergents With Hurt Feelings - Rob Bell (Part 4)

ROB BELL'S DODGY HERMENEUTICAL PRACTICES

Unlike many of the other emergents Rob Bell attempts to approach Scripture in a scholarly way. The problem is that he completely abandons the historic grammatical approach to interpreting Scripture that has been common practice through church hstory. The end result we get in many cases is a complete ignorance of the obvious meaning of a text as I discussed yesterday. God is so kind that He made much of Scripture explicit so that people as thick as myself could understand it. Granted there are difficult and mysterious passages, but God's message to man of reconciliation could not be clearer. Rob Bell, however, continually gets new perspectives on how to understand the Gospel. He reveals things that the early Church, Church fathers, Reformers, Puritans, and Revivalists never discovered. Rob Bell is a very intelligent man but I doubt he is that smart.

In this video Todd Friel from Wretched Radio takes a closer look at Rob Bell's hermeneutical practices and the lens through which he approaches Scripture. There are many theological problems with what Rob Bell teaches and his far reaching influence demands a response. This audio examines what I believe to be the root of many of these problems.


I know there are some people who are responding to these posts who either attend Rob Bell's church or strongly support his teaching. If you want to respond again I would like to ask you to explain how you define the Gospel and how you articulate it. I think that would be a good starting point as we try to reason. As some of you have rightly said we should not go to war over the issues of tongues and eschatology. But the means by which a man is born again we can NEVER compromise on and must have unity. So let's see if we preach the same Gospel?

Go On To Part 5
Go Back To Part 3
Go Back To Part 1

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Foxes Book of Emergents With Hurt Feelings - Rob Bell (Part 3)

On Monday I posted the letter I sent to the innapropriately named fellowship Rob Bell pastors (Mars Hill Bible Church). The response was disappointing to say the least. In fairness to them they probably get a lot of questions and may be short on time. But the following response seems like a fairly standard response that ignores the reason for the questions that I asked. They pointed me to the "narrative theology" when the lack of answers therein was the reason I wrote the e-mail.

Thank you for contacting us. We hope you'll find this response helpful, although it might not answer all your questions or concerns. With the high volume of questions and comments we receive, we hope you understand it's difficult for us to reply specifically in each instance.

We care deeply how Scripture is interpreted and how to discern living the way of Jesus, and in encountering differing viewpoints it is our aim to agree or disagree in love, keeping central a shared desire to know God and serve Jesus Christ. Regarding your comments or questions, we'd like to direct you to our mission, Narrative Theology, Directions [shared values], and serving focus, available at marshill.org. You might also find our recent audio teachings and archived series as well as Rob Bell's recommended reading list to be beneficial.

More compelling than anything we might say is the power of Christ displayed when we love well.

Grace + Peace
Michelle Garvelink | Mars Hill Communications


Pay close attention to this sentence "We care deeply how Scripture is interpreted and how to discern living the way of Jesus, and in encountering differing viewpoints it is our aim to agree or disagree in love, keeping central a shared desire to know God and serve Jesus Christ."

This is spin doctoring that I'm sure Barack Obama would love to add to his campaign. They care more deeply about interpreting Scripture (ie imposing their own liberal ideas on the text) than what Scripture actually says.

Here are some examples:

On the authority of Scripture:
"The Bells started questioning their assumptions about the Bible itself—"discovering the Bible as a human product," as Rob puts it, rather than the product of divine fiat. "The Bible is still in the center for us," Rob says, "but it's a different kind of center. We want to embrace mystery, rather than conquer it." (Christianity Today November 2004).
In contrast to Bell's iterpretation we'll let Scripture speak for itself - IITimothy 3:16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.

On repentance:
(from Rob Bell's "the god's aren't angry" speaking tour):
Bell mangled the definition of repentance, stating that repentance is not turning from sin. Rather, he says it is a “celebration” of life in Christ. He further stated that anyone who tells you that you need to repent is not talking about Christianity. If he is right, then John the Baptist (Matthew 3:2), Peter (Acts 3:19), Paul (Acts 20:21) and the Lord Jesus Christ Himself (Matthew 4:17; 9:13) weren’t preaching Christianity. In order to come to this conclusion, Bell has to ignore all of the Old and New Testament evidence that repentance is turning from sin and turning to Christ alone in faith. He has to ignore the Jewish conception of repentance (which was not lost on the Jewish believers of the early church) which was turning from sin to turn to God (Ezekiel 18). (comment courtesy Jon Speed who attended one of the meetings)

Rob Bell On Hell:
“Now if there is a life in heaven, and we can choose it, then there’s also another way. A way of living out of sync with how God created us to live. The word for this is hell: a way, a place, a realm absent of how God desires things to be. We can bring heaven to earth; we can bring hell to earth. For Jesus, heaven and hell were present realities. Ways of living we can enter into here and now. He talked very little of the life beyond this one because he understood that the life beyond this one is a continuation of the kinds of choices we make here and now" (Velvet Elvis p147)
Jesus on Hell:
And I say unto you my friends, Be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do. But I will forewarn you whom ye shall fear: Fear him, which after he hath killed hath power to cast into hell; yea, I say unto you, Fear him. (Luke 12:4-5)

How about a verse like John 14:6 where Jesus says "I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." You would think that leaves no room for reinterpretation. Not with Rob Bell, listen to the number he does on John 14:6, "“Jesus at one point claimed to be ‘the way, the truth, and the life’. Jesus was not making claims about one religion being better than all other religions. That completely misses the point, the depth, and the truth” (Velvet Elvis p.21). Bell continues on "“I don’t follow Christianity because I think Christianity is the best religion. I follow Jesus because he leads me into ultimate reality. He teaches me to live in tune with how reality is. When Jesus said, “No one comes to the Father except through me’, he was saying that his way, his words, his life is our connection to how things truly are at the deepest levels of existence” (p. 83).

Contrast that with Acts 4:11-12 "This Jesus is the stone that was rejected by you, the builders, which has become the cornerstone. And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved."

A basic grasp of the biblical text shows Rob Bell to be heretical. It is a scary inditement on biblical literacy among church goers that Rob Bell gains wide acceptance and Christian bookstores are willing to stock his material.

Go On To Part 4
Go Back To Part 2
Go Back To Part 1

Washer Wednesday - Q & A With Paul Washer

This is a Question and Answer session with Paul Washer that was given at the True Disciple Conference a while back. It is a great opportunity for those who love Paul's preaching to hear him discuss very interesting issues made all the more provocative whenever brother Paul is in the mix.

The sound quality improves after the introduction...

This Question & Answer session covers questions about: prayer, revival, fasting, quiet times (devotionals), evangelism, how Paul ended up in Peru, and what the hours of a Pastor's schedule should look like.

The audio for this sermon was provided by The Spurgeon Baptist Association of Churches: www.sbaoc.org

For more info about Paul Washer go to:
www.heartcrymissionary.com

This sermon was preached at Emmanuel Baptist Church in Manhattan, KS.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Foxes Book of Emergents With Hurt Feelings - Rob Bell (Part 2)

10 QUESTIONS FOR ROB BELL.
I have received many accusations concerning my Rob Bell expose video for not attempting to dialogue personally with Rob Bell, even though these people never dialogued with me to find out whether their accusation was true or not. To satisfy their curiosity I am now posting the letter (e-mail) I sent to the fellowship he pastors - Mars Hill Bible Church. This was my attempt to try and get a response to the many bizarre, cryptic, and disturbing things that have been uttered by Rob Bell in recent years.

This was never a Matthew 18 discipline issue anyway and did not require an attempt to contact Rob Bell personally (as difficult as that is). Rob Bell's false teachings are publicly marketed and demand a public response, Scripture mandates it (Romans 16:17), and Rob Bell even invites it on the back cover of his book Velvet Elvis. It is Rob Bell who should have consulted with credible theologians before publishing his book, committed open air preachers before slandering them in "Bullhorn Guy", and the biblical text before making a hash of the Gospel whenever he preaches.

Nonetheless I wrote to Mars Hill church (Grand Rapids) in the hope of getting some clear answers. Their website requested I read their "narrative theology" before writing as it would possibly answer my questions. Well the "narrative theology" did not answer any of my questions it just raised a whole lot more. What follows is the letter I wrote.

To whom it may concern
I have read through your theology page but many questions remain unresolved. I would be so grateful if you could clearly answer the following 10 questions:

1. Could you explain what Mars Hill (MH) teaches concerning how an individual can be "born again" as Jesus spoke about in the John 3:3?

2. If a person is"born again" or "saved" - what are they saved from?

3. Is there a such thing as eternal conscious punishment (ie Hell or the Lake of Fire) - and if so who will end up there?

4. Do you hold to the doctrine of the Trinity - and if so how do you describe it?

5. How do you define sin (it only seemed to be described in the sense of social responsibility on your theology page)?

6. What happens to people who aren't Christians when they die, what is their eternal destiny? For example what would happen to a devout muslim, devout buddhist etc

7. Is it necessary to repent of sin in order for an individual to recieve salvation -and if so how would you define this repentance?

8. Do you believe that the Cross of Jesus Christ was about or mainly about God pouring out His wrath on His Son as a penal subsitutionary payment for human sin?

9. How would you teach people in your congregation to witness or proclaim the Christian message and what are the essential elements of this message?

10. Would you agree or disagree with the following statement - The Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments were given by inspiration of God, and are the only sufficient, certain and authoritative rule of all saving knowledge, faith, and obedience.

I very much appreciate you taking the time to read this mail and consider these questions.

Yours sincerely
Cameron Buettel


They did respond and I'll post it on thursday - be prepared for disappointment.

Go On To Part 3
Go Back To Part 1

Monday, October 6, 2008

Foxes Book of Emergents With Hurt Feelings - Rob Bell (Part 1)

Yersterday I posted the youtube video that has caused a lot of furore among many within the emergent crowd. It is an expose of Rob Bell's humanistic teaching found in his Nooma video called Dust. In reality this video only scratches the surface of the many "robellian" heresies and false teachings.

The video I posted was a biblical critique that questioned only Rob Bell's teaching and not his motive or character. It's a shame that many emergents could not afford me the same courtesy and continually pretended to know my motives, resorted to name calling, and failed to reason from Scriptures. There were many supportive comments as well. But what surpised me was how judgmental many people are within the emergent movement - the very thing I was continually accused of. Out of the hundreds of abusive comments there were only three people I can recall who were willing to reason from Scripture. Though we disagreed I have genuinely enjoyed dialoging with them.

Most of the criticisms have been as repetitive as a scratched record so I have decided to post responses to many of the criticisms over the coming days. I have been continually surprised by the number of people who have rebuked me for not taking the matter up with Rob Bell privately without een knowing if this was the case. The truth is that I have written to Rob Bell's church and I will post that letter tomorrow. But it is not a matter that demands private dialogue (and it is very hard to get a private hearing with Rob Bell anyway) because I am criticising publicly marketed material and it warrants a public response. Furthermore Scripture madates the testing of teaching (Romans 16:17) and Rob Bell even invites it on the back cover of Velvet Elvis (“We have to test everything... Test it. Probe it. Do that to this book”). So in reality I was only taking up Rob Bell's offer.

Tomorrow - My letter to Rob Bell's church.

Go On To Part 2

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Sacred Cow Saturday - Episode 11 - Rob Bell

I'm going to be continuing in exposing a lot of the emergent deception over the coming days. I thought I would post the video that started all the furore. It is my biblical critique of Rob Bell's man centred theology as explained in his Nooma video Dust. I've had a lot of critical comments about it. See what you think!



Go Back To Episode 10
Go Back To Episode 1

Friday, October 3, 2008

Lame Abortion Arguments

This video shows the sheer stupidity of the pro choice rhetoric that is floating around at the moment. It is an excerpt from "Wretched TV" hosted by Todd Friel. The illustrations given are outrageous and yet totally consistent with the ridiculous repositioning on the abortion issue by emergents, liberals, and red letters.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Revelation TV Wrap Up

Well, last night was the night where I made my Television debut. Of course I have previously appeared in Way of the Master TV series being run over by a tank but this was my first speaking role. It was an interview with my good friend Rob Hughes from London where we discussed open air preaching on Revelation TV in the UK.

I think the show went well and the host seemed very positive and supportive towards our passion. I believe the Gospel was soundly explained and we got to do with many major issues concerning "modern evangelism" and the true Gospel. We have the DVD and hope to upload it as soon as possible so those who wish to see it can.

But right now I've got a train to catch - I gotta scoot!

Stay tuned for when we post the video on the internet Lord willing.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

The Long Arm of the Law

In the build up to tonights interview on Revelation TV www.revelationtv.com concerning open air preaching I'd like to take a look at an issue that is one of the greatest bones of contention concerning preaching of the Gospel in the modern era.

One of the great stumblingblocks in modern evangelicalism is a correct biblical understanding of the function of God's Moral Law in evangelism. Mere mention of the word "Law" is likely to evoke responses such as "legalism", "works righteousness", "we are on the other side of the cross", and "we are now in the age of grace".

This is simply not the case. In fact correct expounding of the law reveals our utter hopelessness to meet the requirements of the law and hence our need for alien righteousness found only in Christ. It is true that salvation is by grace but it is impossible to explain grace without explaining the impossible requirements of God's law. Grace is, by definition, unmerited favor. How can we possibly see it is something we don't merit until we see our transgressions against God. How can we preach love without the law when God showed us His love in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us (Rom 5:8). In order to comprehend God's love we must comprehend our sinfulness. In order to comprehend our sinfulness we must grasp the requirements of God's justice system found in the law.

In fact the sermon on the mount (Matthew 5) magnifies the law to the point where Christ points out that

"For I tell you, unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. You have heard that it was said to those of old, 'You shall not murder; and whoever murders will be liable to judgment.' But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, 'You fool!' will be liable to the hell of fire." (verses 20-22)

"You have heard that it was said, 'You shall not commit adultery.'
But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart." (verses 27-28)

"You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect." (verse 48)


The Law serves as the schoolmaster to lead us to Christ.

Here is what some great preachers through history had to say about preaching the law of God.

A. W. Pink "Just as the world was not ready for the New Testament before it received the Old, just as the Jews were not prepared for the ministry of Christ until John the Baptist had gone before Him with his claimant call to repentance, so the unsaved are in no condition today for the Gospel till the Law be applied to their hearts, for 'by the Law is the knowledge of sin.' It is a waste of time to sow seed on ground which has never been ploughed or spaded! To present the vicarious sacrifice of Christ to those whose dominant passion is to take fill of sin, is to give that which is holy to the dogs."

A. W. Tozer "No one can know the true grace of God who has not first known the fear of God."

Augustine "The Law is not in fault, but our evil and wicked nature; even as a heap of lime is still and quiet until water be poured thereon, but then it begins to smoke and burn, not from the fault of the water, but from the nature and kind of the lime which will not endure it."

C. S. Lewis "When we merely say that we are bad, the 'wrath' of God seems a barbarous doctrine; as soon as we perceive our bad-ness, it appears inevitable, a mere corollary from God's goodness..."

Charles Spurgeon "I do not believe that any man can preach the gospel who does not preach the Law." Then he warns, "Lower the Law and you dim the light by which man perceives his guilt; this is a very serious loss to the sinner rather than a gain; for it lessens the likelihood of his conviction and conversion. I say you have deprived the gospel of its ablest auxiliary [its most powerful weapon] when you have set aside the Law. You have taken away from it the schoolmaster that is to bring men to Christ . . . They will never accept grace till they tremble before a just and holy Law. Therefore the Law serves a most necessary purpose, and it must not be removed from its place."

D. L. Moody “It is a great mistake to give a man who has not been convicted of sin certain passages that were never meant for him. The Law is what he needs … Do not offer the consolation of the gospel until he sees and knows he is guilty before God. We must give enough of the Law to take away all self-righteousness. I pity the man who preaches only one side of the truth, always the gospel and never the Law.” EB - Jos 1:7

Dr. Martin Loyd-Jones "A gospel which merely says, 'Come to Jesus,' and offers Him as a friend, and offers a marvelous new life, without convincing of sin, is not New Testament evangelism. (The essence of evangelism is to start by preaching the Law; and it is because the Law has not been preached that we have had so much superficial evangelism.) True evangelism... must always start by preaching the law."
"The trouble with people who are not seeking for a Savior, and for salvation, is that they do not understand the nature of sin. It is the peculiar function of the Law to bring such an understanding to a man's mind and conscience. That is why great evangelical preachers 300 years ago in the time of the puritans, and 200 years ago in the time of Whitefield and others, always engaged in what they called a preliminary law work."

George Whitefield "First, then, before you can speak peace to your hearts, you must be made to see, made to feel, made to weep over, made to bewail, your actual transgressions against the Law of God."

J. C. Ryle "People will never set their faces decidedly towards heaven, and live like pilgrims, until they really feel that they are in danger of hell ... Let us expound and beat out the Ten Commandments, and show the length, and breadth, and depth, and height of their requirements. This is the way of our Lord in the Sermon on the Mount. We cannot do better than follow His plan. We may depend on it, men will never come to Jesus, and stay with Jesus, and live for Jesus, unless they really know why they are to come, and what is their need. Those whom the Spirit draws to Jesus are those who the Spirit has convinced of sin. Without thorough conviction of sin, men may seem to come to Jesus and follow Him for a season, but they will soon fall away and return to the world."

J. I. Packer "Unless we see our shortcomings in the light of the Law and holiness of God, we do not see them as sin at all."

John Bunyan "The man who does not know the nature of the Law, cannot know the nature of sin."

John MacArthur "God's grace cannot be faithfully preached to unbelievers until the Law is preached and man's corrupt nature is exposed. It is impossible for a person to fully realize his need for God's grace until he sees how terribly he has failed the standards of God's Law."

John Newton "Ignorance of the nature and design of the Law is at the bottom of most religious mistakes."

John R. Stott "We cannot come to Christ to be justified until we have first been to Moses, to be condemned. But once we have gone to Moses, and acknowledged our sin, guilt and condemnation, we must not stay there. We must let Moses send us to Christ."

John Wesley "While he cries out, O what love have I to thy Law! all the day long is my study in it. He sees daily, in that divine mirror, more and more of his own sinfulness. He sees more and more clearly, that he is fullness a sinner in all things -- that neither his heart nor his ways are right before God, and that every moment sends him to Christ. Therefore I cannot spare the Law one moment, no more than I can spare Christ, seeing I now want it as much to keep me to Christ, as I ever wanted it to bring me to Him. Otherwise this 'evil heart of unbelief' would immediately 'depart from the living God.' Indeed each is continually sending me to the other--the Law to Christ, and Christ to the Law."

Jonathan Edwards "The only way we can know whether we are sinning is by knowing His Moral Law."

Martin Luther "Satan, the god of all dissension stirs up daily new sects. And last of all which of all others I should never have foreseen or once suspected, he has raised up a sect such as teach that men should not be terrified by the law, but gently exhorted by the preaching of the grace of Christ."

Matthew Henry "Herein is the Law of God above all other laws, that it is a spiritual law. Other laws may forbid compassing and imagining, which are treason in the heart, but cannot take cognizance thereof, unless there be some overt act; but the Law of God takes notice of the iniquity regarded in the heart, though it go no further."