GAMBLING CRAZE—Americans legally gambled an astounding $330 billion in 1992--over $1,200 for every man, woman, and child. Casinos are legal in 23 states, lotteries operate in 37. State lotteries cause more harm than good. They raise little tax revenue, create few jobs, hurt the poor, encourage crime, and create compulsive gamblers (4/18 Chr.News) . Gambling is morally wrong, a social evil, and degrading. It appeals to greed, sloth, and selfishness--sins condemned by Scripture (5/94 Moody). The gambling industry hopes to help gamblers lose a record $35 billion in 1995 (3/14 USN&WR). People forget that every winning dollar is plucked from the pockets of vulnerable losers.
EUTHANASIA, DOCTORS WHO KILL—Jack Kevorkian, "Dr. Death," tries to make physician-assisted sui-cide seem compassionate, but there are dangers. Dating back 2,500 years to Hippocrates, the fore-most rule of medicine is that "doctors shall not kill." Healing is the physician’s priority. The "right to die" can too easily become a "duty to die." Pres. Clinton last Nov. said there are a lot of extra costs in medical care at the end of life, and getting more Americans to sign living wills is "one way to weed some of them out." (4/25 USN&WR) . "Death with dignity" seems at times now to mean "killing the sufferer instead of relieving the suffering." Be warned, be wise, beware!
ELDERS ENDORSES HOMOSEXUAL ADOPTION—Surgeon General Joycelyn Elders says maybe we should legal-ize drugs, and that sex education should be taught to pre-kindergarten children in daycare cen-ters. She has demanded public funds for abortion, and distribution of condoms in schools. Now, in an interview with the homosexual magazine The Advocate, she endorsed homosexual adoption, implied that gay sex is healthy, attacked as hateful Christians who oppose the gay rights movement, advoca-ted pro-homosexual school programs, and called the Boy Scouts’ policy of excluding gays "unfair." (4/2 World) .She said: "I feel that if gay or lesbian couples feel that they want children enough to adopt, well, then they are probably just as capable of being good parents as heterosexual parents who choose to adopt." She added: "We have to be more open about sex.. .tell people that sex is good.. .It’s a normal and healthy part of our being, whether it is homosexual or heterosexual."
CLINTON: SAINT, OR SOCIALIST?—In the 4/25 Chr.Today, Pat Robertson said: "America has become a predominantly anti-Christian pagan nation--and our government has become a weapon the anti-Chris-tian forces now use against Christians and religious people." Pres. Clinton attends a Southern Baptist church, is married to a liberal Methodist, and is our first president to graduate from a Catholic college. Apart from his CFR/Trilateral connection, his alleged extra-marital affairs and draft-dodging, he has appointed over a score of homosexuals to his staff. To millions of Ameri-cans, his support for abortion rights makes him a mass murderer. On the character issue, he is a disaster. James Dobson recently listed 53 separate developments in 1993 that "served to undermine traditional moral values." His socialist agenda keeps expanding. The media protect him in many ways. Yet, Billy Graham says, "I believe Bill has gone to his knees many times...." And Ed Dob-son amazingly says (4/25 CT): "...I believe [Clinton’s] more deeply spiritual than any president we’ve had in recent years." Sadly, that’s not saying much, but where is the basis for even that?
CAMPOLO: CLINTON’S ‘SOCIALIST’ FRIEND—Pres. Clinton in his State of the Union address called Eas-tern Collage sociologist Tony Campolo his "good friend." Rick Miesel in his Mar-Apr BDM Letter said: "Campolo is a theological liberal, a New Age pantheist, and a radical political socialist, whose teachings are heretical at best and blasphemous at worst!" A 2/5 World article said: "...Campolo views the government as nothing more than a tool to bring about desired ends. Are people lacking in health care? Than let the government make it illegal for doctors to offer to serve people in exchange for other goods and services. Are people poor? Then let the government give them other people’s money. The irony of this is that Clinton, Campolo, and others think that such actions constitute ‘justice.’" They really constitute theft, extortion, bribery, and slavery.
GALAXY DRIFT CHALLENGES EVOLUTION IDEA—The Marshall Space Flight Center’s (NASA) 4/6 Marshall Star says: Two astronomers have discovered that the Milky Way galaxy and most of its neighboring galaxies, contained within a huge volume of the universe, one billion light-years in diameter, are drifting with respect to the more distant universe. This startling result may imply that the uni-verse is "lumpier" on a much larger scale than can be readily explained by any current theory. Dr. Tod Lauer (NOAO) says: "The new observations thus strongly challenge our understanding of how the universe evolved." He and Dr. Marc Postman (Space Telescope Science Inst., Baltimore) have studied galaxy motions over the entire sky out to deepest-ever distances of over 500 light years.
NCC TO ‘BE NO MORE’—National Council of Chur-ches head, Rev. Joan Brown Campbell, says the NCC may disappear by the year 2000.She says: "There will be a new ecumenical structure formed that will include Pentecostals, Roman Catholics, Evangelicals." (4/18 C.News). She added: "They will come into some new configuration and the NCC will be no more as we know it now." Mean-while, ecumenism among Catholics, charisrnatics, and evangelicals is accelerating, as evidenced by the recent signing of the Colson/Neuhaus "Evangelicals and Catholics Together" document.
GRAHAM & NCC ECUMENICAL EVANGELISM—Dr. Billy Graham has indicated interest in being part of the discussion of a new National Council of Churches "more intentionally ecumenical program of evangelism" in the U.S. (Spring’94 EcuLink). Participants in developing this proposed NCC evangelization policy statement will meet in Dec. at the Billy Graham Training Center (NC).
WHITE CALLS CATHOLICS ‘CLOSEST FRIENDS’—Geneva College President and former NAE Pres. Dr. John White signed and praised the Colson/Neuhaus "Evangelicals and Catholics Together" statement (5/1 CC). White now says this document "has the potential to recast all the ecumenical discus-sions that have gone on through the years. This is a new day. Our closest friends as evan-gelicals, in the cultural task and in the fun-damental theological task, are Roman Catholics. It’s not liberal Lutherans; it’s not liberal Presbyterians. The old friends are no longer friends."(5/94 Moody). Calling Catholics "clo-sest friends.. .in the theological task," would seem to end further evangelizing of Catholics. Indeed, the document condemns proselytizing.
ACCC RESOLUTION ON EVANGELICALS AND CATHOLICS—An ACCC resolution quoted from the recent Colson/Neuhaus "Evangelicals and Catholics Togeth-er" statement (see 4/15 CC), and said: "Be it known that we, the Executive Committee of the American Council of Christian Churches meeting at the Bible Church of Westville, NJ on April 26,1994 firmly contend that the Word of God, as well as ‘the ancient creeds and core beliefs’ of Christians are diametrically opposed to the teachings of Roman Catholicism. True Bible-believing Christians should not join hands with Roman Catholics in evangelistic endeav-ors. We do not believe that evangelicals and Catholics are ‘brothers in Christ,’ nor that there are 1.7 billion Christians in the world and that 1 billion of these are Roman Catho-lics’ as this 25-page statement claims. ..."
RABBI ECKSTEIN A BRIDGE-BUILDER TO EVANGELICALS—Orthodox Jewish Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein has lec-tured at such evangelical strongholds as Cris-well College, Wheaton College, and Trinity Sem-inary (2/15/88 Chr.News). He has been praised by Paul Crouch, Pat Boone, Sandi Patti, David Hubbard, Brandt Gustavson, and Jerry Falwell for his ministry of building bridges between evangelicals and Jews. Pat Robertson says of Eckstein: "He is a dedicated believer in the Bible and in the God of the Bible. . .I believe his work is worthy of support by those of his own faith community as well as evangelicals." (5/94 Charisma). It is rather incredible that evangelicals would even consider supporting a Jewish rabbi who defends the ancient Pharisees, says modern Judaism is Phariseeism, and claims Jesus never said the words recorded in John 8:44, "Ye are of your father the devil" (1/30/89 CN). In the 5/94 Charisma article, Eckstein said: "I’m not a Christian, I’m still a Jew..."
JIM BAKKER A LIBERAL DEMOCRAT?—PTL founder Jim Bakker will preach a different message when he gets out of federal prison next fall. His law-yer, James Toms, says: "It won’t be a right-wing Republican commitment. . . There will be a strong core of calling for justice and equity as part of the gospel. You’ll see a Bible-believing liberal Democrat." (4/18 NIRR). Bakker earlier renounced his "prosperity gospel" teachings.
CRISWELL NO LONGER A MASON—Dr. W.A. Criswell in a letter to this editor last month said he was initiated into the Masonic Lodge in 1931, but was released from membership soon after. Dr. James Holly (SBC) last week said Criswell has maintained a sympathy toward Masonry, de-fended Masons, evidently been enriched by his Masonry ties, and has not renounced Freemasonry.
STANLEY’S TROUBLED MARRIAGE—Radio-TV preacher and Southern Baptist leader Charles Stanley is pastor of 13,000-member First Baptist Church in Atlanta. He informed his church last July 4 that his wife of 38 years had filed for legal separation. His Atlanta "In Touch" office last week told us that the Stanleys are now "work-ing toward reconciliation" and "need prayer."
TEMPLE SEMINARY SUMMER SPEAKERS—We keep hoping at each new change in leadership at Tennessee Temple University to see a turn to a stronger separatist stance. But, alas, time and again, we see a similar slate of speakers from the world of new evangelicalism. The TTU Baccalaur-eate speaker is Dr. Tim Lee’s pastor, Dr. Gary Coleman. Temple Baptist Seminary summer cour-ses in June are taught by: Liberty University Prof. Dr. Gary Habermas who defends the Shroud of Turin hoax, Dr. Kenneth Gangel (Dallas Semin-ary), Dr. Michael Anthony (Talbot),and Dr. Walter Kaiser who was the former academic dean at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School and is now a Gordon-Conwell Seminary professor, and others.
WIERSBE PRAISES DISTORTED BIBLE VERSION—Dr. Warren Wiersbe is a popular author and confer-ence speaker. He has pastored Moody Church, ser-ved as Gen. Dir. of Back to the Bible, and with YFC. We now see him endorsing Eugene Peterson’s The Message, "N.T. in Contemporary English," released by NavPress last July. Wiersbe calls this "the boldest and most provocative render-ing of the New Testament I’ve ever read." The 2/94 Chr. World Report shows several alarming textual deletions, distortions, and additions. Wiersbe often speaks at TTU and GARBC schools. He was listed to speak at First Baptist Church (SBC), Jacksonville, 2/94; at MBI, 5/94; and at the Billy Graham Training Center in August.
A NEW NEW EVANGELICALISM—Fundamentalism has some problems. It would be foolish to deny this. Sometimes older fundamentalists fought the wrong battles with the wrong weapons. Sometimes they hit beneath the belt. But a younger group of fundamentalists need to realize that they did fight. Developing today is a younger breed of fundamentalists who are the same as the type that produced the new evangelicals. Our books on fundamentalism are excellent Scriptural ex-positions, but fail to mention new evangelical-ism or name names of those who would dilute or destroy the faith through the lack of separa-tion. A younger group of fundamentalists resists the naming of names in resolutions. They want to be fundamentalists without any contending. This is not possible! In another day it pro-duced new evangelicalism. It will produce today a new new evangelicalism. (Dr. James Singleton)
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