SHOCKING VITAL STATISTICS—The following is from a "Timothy Plan" flyer: ABORTION takes an innocent child's life every 20 seconds. (4/17/92 USA Today). PORNOGRAPHY: 86 percent of rapists studied admitted to the regular use of pornography. (NCAP,1993). ALCOHOL: In the past decade, four times as many Americans died in drunk driving accidents as were killed in the Vietnam War. (NHTSA,1993). TOBACCO'S worldwide effects claim the lives of five people every minute. (Amer. Cancer Soc., 1994). One CASINO GAMBLER victimizes 10-17 people. Directly injured parties include spouse, children, parents other relatives, employers, coworkers, and friends. (FL Council on Compulsive Gambling).
DOES TV INFLUENCE BEHAVIOR?—Network executives have long claimed there is no connection between what children see on television and anti-social or personally risky behavior. But they also assure advertisers that if they will fork over $1 million for a 30-second commercial during the Super Bowl, they'll sell scads of beer, tires, cars, and other products to viewers (3/11 World). Which is it? Why does persuasion work with commercials but not with programming?
PORNOGRAPHY ALERT—Jerry Kirk, founder of the Cincinnati-based Religious Alliance Against Pornography (RAAP), warned the NAE Convention last month that a new insidious source for young people to be corrupted by pornography is the computer. With a computer and modem, even young children have access to almost any kind of filth. It is also available on disk. Pornography is a $10 billion-a-year business and the third most-profitable enterprise for organized crime after drug running and gambling (3/6 CT). RAAP last Jan. organized an international conference of 170 religious leaders representing nearly 50 groups (evangelicals, Catholics, WCC, Mormons, and Muslims, united to battle pornography. We disapprove of such syncretism.
TEMPLETON PRIZE GOES TO CREEDLESS SCIENTIST—The $1 million Templeton Prize for Progress in Religion will go to Australian physicist Paul Davies (3/13 C.News). He adheres to no standard religious creed, and wrote in 1983 that "science offers a surer path to God than religion." Previous winners include Billy Graham, Chuck Colson, and Mother Teresa. Judges this year included former Pres. Bush and Margaret Thatcher.
AFEC MEETS AT BJU—The Assoc. of Fundamentalists Evangelizing Catholics is a fellowship of six fundamental missions to R. Catholics. Dr. Bill Jackson is president. Its 8th Annual Conference is at Bob Jones Univer. this year, June 13-16.
U.S. FUNDS TO IRA TERRORISTS?—Pres. Clinton recently froze the U.S. assets of some Middle East terrorist groups. But he failed to include one of the biggest terrorist groups in the world, the Irish Republican Army. The IRA's major support comes from the Irish sympathizers in the U.S. Without American support, it would soon be out of business (3/95 V.InTheW.). Sinn Fein is the IRA's political ally. Its leader Gerry Adams came to the U.S. again last month on a fund raising trip, and expected to leave with about $100,000. The IRA's roots are Roman Catholic, but it gets arms from Libya and has a clear Marxist agenda (12/88 Chalc.Rpt). The 9/12 U.S. News said of the recent IRA cease-fire: "Is it peace or a ploy?" The Irish Republic is 90 percent Catholic. Northern Ireland is 65 percent Protestant. The North wants to remain under British rule. It opposes becoming a minority in a united Roman Catholic country with a history of bloody cruelty against Christians.
CATHOLICISM STILL DANGEROUS—In the Jan.-Feb. Foundation, Dr. M.H. Reynolds says: "Throughout the centuries, the Roman Catholic Church has been an enemy of all true believers and the blood of hundreds of thousands of martyrs is upon its hands. However, for the past few decades, [it] has changed its outward appearance and approaches. It has a new face of tolerance and a kindlier public image but the damnable heresies it proclaims remain as dangerous as ever. Furthermore, those who are only familiar with Roman Catholicism, as practiced in this country, would not believe the raw heathenism which is part of their worship in countries where they have been in control for centuries." Dr. Reynolds adds: "In truth, the Roman Catholic Church is a false church, preaches a false gospel and is not a part of the body of Christ."
HOLINESS DEMANDS CONTROVERSY WITH ERROR—The nature of God demands both personal and ecclesiastical separation...A holy God must demand holiness in all moral beings...To be holy involves a continual controversy with error. Dr. James M. Gray, a past president of Moody Bible Institute wrote, "God Himself was the first to create controversy; to His eternal glory be it said." "Hate the evil, and love the good, and establish judgment in the gate" (Amos 5:15) echoes from ancient Israel. Titus 1:13 admonishes us to rebuke false teachers sharply. Contending for the faith involves more than just a few innocuous remarks with no particular point to them. Contending for the faith involves a hearty repudiation of error and a definite, clear enunciation of the truth. (Dr. Ernest Pickering, Frontline, Vol. 5, No. 1, 1995)
PROMISE KEEPERS IS ECUMENICAL AND DANGEROUS—The Promise Keepers movement is spreading like wildfire and is coming to 13 cities this year. It is bringing together Catholic charismatics, Pentecostals, liberals, and evangelicals. Even some "fundamentalists" and GARBC'ers have participated so it would be hard to overstate the danger this movement poses to Bible-believers. Moody President Joseph Stowell is one of the speakers again this year. Other speakers are most notorious Pope-praising ecumenicals, or charismatics or new-evangelicals, such as: Bill Bright, Bruce Wilkinson, E.V. Hill, Luis Palau, Jack Hayford, Chuck Colson, Bill Hybels, Tony Evans, Gary Smalley, Franklin Graham, John Perkins, Greg Laurie, and Howard Hendricks. Jerry Falwell invited a PK rally to Liberty University March 25. Foundation Editor Dr. M.H. Reynolds says the PK movement "represents another massive effort of Satan to mix truth and error in some very deceptive ways." His excellent long article is available in leaflet form: 100 copies for $10, P.O. Box 6278, Los Osos, CA 93412.
STOWELL A MEMBER OF NAE—Moody Bible Institute President Dr. Joseph Stowell has strayed far from his GARBC roots. His name now appears on the 3/95 list of National Association of Evangelicals' "Members-at-Large." He is involved in Luis Palau's 6/96 ecumenical evangelism "Say YES Chicago" campaign. He speaks at ecumenical Promise Keepers rallies. He has spoken at Dallas Seminary, TEDS, So. Baptist Convention events, and at the ecumenical NRB (Nat'l Religious Broadcasters). This is all further sad evidence of MBI's complete capitulation to new-evangelicalism, and of Stowell's "official" new-evangelical status, since he is now a bona fide member of the mainline new-evangelical NAE.
NAE CONVENTION—This editor attended over half of the National Association of Evangelicals' 53rd Annual Convention, with press credentials, in Louisville, March 6-7. Speakers included: Jack Hayford (charismatic), Luis Palau, Duane Litfin (Wheaton College Pres.), Morris Chapman (SBC), Elmer Towns, D. James Kennedy, Elisabeth Elliot, Ronald Potter, Paul Conn (Lee College Pres.), and David Bryant. We attended two of the three press conferences. A special tribute was given retiring Exec. Dir. Dr. Billy Melvin. His successor at NAE's helm, Assembly of God minister Dr. Don Argue, becomes President April 3--the first Pentecostal to lead the NAE. Melvin will become part-time Vice-Pres.-at-Large. The present President, Dr. David Rambo, becomes Chairman of the Board. The new titles are part of the massive reorganization announced last year to correct the "too male, too white, too old" NAE image. The James DeForest Murch Award was presented to "Living Bible" publisher Kenneth Taylor, who was given a standing ovation. Donald Hustad (SB) was convention organist, and Barbara Musto was the soloist. The music was better than last year, and much more tame than the NRB's this year. A notable exception was the Lee College Singers who sang about eight songs, accompanied by loud drums, guitar, bass, keyboard, brass, etc. More than once we heard, "It doesn't matter what denomination we are." Evidently it doesn't. World Relief head Dr. Art Gay commended over a dozen large donor denominations including the Conservative Baptist Assoc., the PCA, and the liberal Presbyterian Church (USA) which is a member of the NCC/WCC.
SWORD EDITOR DR. CURTIS HUTSON DIES—Dr. Curtis Hutson went to be with the Lord March 5, after a 3-year bout with cancer. More on this later.
BRYANT PRAISED HOLY LAUGHTER MOVEMENT AT NAE—David Bryant, founder and pres. of Concerts of Prayer, Int'l, told his EFMA (Evangelical Fellowship of Mission Agencies) luncheon audience at the NAE that America is in the early stages of a true spiritual awakening--an unprecedented world revival bearing down on us. He said God is digging trenches with the tools of renewal among Pentecostals, Catholics...in His church. He said 80,000 people have gone to Toronto to see what God is doing. [He refers to the "holy laughter" movement, the "Toronto Blessing"--see 3/15 CC]. He said the Holy Spirit is in charge of the Toronto ["laughing revival"] movement, and this is one of the "feeder streams" that is flowing together in the river of revival.
EVANGELICALS OBSESSED WITH RACISM—There seems to be a growing fixation with racism in evangelical and Pentecostal circles today, while doctrine is distorted or ignored. Billy Graham recently termed racism the greatest problem in the world today. Racial reconciliation was a central theme at Promise Keepers events last summer, and was a recurring theme at the 3/94 NAE convention in Dallas (9/1 CC). A Texas-size storm that wreaked havoc on the 6/94 Dallas PK rally prompted the PK founder to tell the mostly white audience that he felt God sent the storm to shift PK's agenda to a ministry of racial healing (8/94 Charisma). Black and white Pentecostals in Memphis last Oct., merged and formed a new interracial body, the Pentecostal/Charismatic Churches of North America. The NAE and NBEA (Nat'l Black Evang. Assoc.) jointly called a Convocation on Racial Reconciliation last Jan. to discuss barriers to a possible merger. Black evangelicals split from the NAE in 1960. NAE Pres. Don Argue at a Mar. 6 NAE press conference said: "I look forward to the day when the Chairman of the NAE Board will be an African-American." A main NAE speaker, Ronald Potter, quoted liberals, radicals, and socialists profusely, but did not once quote the Bible (except an oblique reference to "dry bones"). Potter gave a skewed quote from a 1990 NAE-NBEA Consultation on Racism paper that said white Americans displaced/destroyed one race (Indians), enslaved another (blacks), and built our economy on the backs of kidnapped Africans. It said racism is a foundational sin of the U.S. Yet an NAE leader later from the platform called Potter's "social" lecture "worship." Racial reconciliation is needed, but Bible DOCTRINE must have priority for any unity to have the blessing of God. We must separate from liberals and compromisers, regardless of skin color.
PROGRESSIVE DISPENSATIONALISM—Dallas Seminary Professors Craig Blaising and Darrell Bock's1993 book by this name is causing a mild furor. They argue for a more moderate view of the end times (1/95 Observa.). Tim LaHaye says: "I am suspicious of that word 'progressive.' It can be a code word for liberal." (3/95 NLJ). Myron Houghton says Walter Elwell is right when he comments: "The new dispensationalism looks so much like non-dispensationalist pre-millennialism that one struggles to see any real difference." (1/95 Faith Pulpit). Miles Stanford (840 Vindicator Dr., #111, Colorado Sprs., CO 80919) has written a paper contrasting Pauline vs. Progressive Dispensationalism, and also "An Open Letter to Dr. Charles Swindoll" (Dallas Seminary Pres.) decrying this "new" teaching. The IFCA in 1993 refused to carry an ad for Stanford's writings on this. Reconstructionist Gary North in 1992 told of Dallas's revised curriculum which de-emphasized dispensational theology (8/1/92 CC).
GRBS PROF. DAVID TURNER DENIES HEAVENLY CITY?—David L. Turner, Professor of New Testament and Systematic Theology at GARBC-approved Grand Rapids Baptist Seminary, in Chapter 9 of a Zondervan book edited by Craig Blaising and Darrell Bock denies that the heavenly city in Revelation 21 is a literal city. Dr. Clay Nuttall--a GRBS grad, a former longtime member of GRBS's Board and of the GARBC's Council of 18, and whose historic church recently left the GARBC (see 12/15 CC)--has written a two-page critique of this chapter. It is available from him at: Central Baptist Church, P.O. Box 316, Hobart, IN 46342 (send offering for postage). Dr. Nuttall's critique is entitled, "Surprise!! There Is No Heavenly City." He quotes Turner: "Perhaps the absence of oysters large enough to produce such pearls (a gate of the city) and the absence of sufficient gold to pave such a city (viewed as literally 1,380 miles square and high) is viewed as sufficient reason not to take these images as fully literal." Dr. Nuttall says "The root of this liberal mindset is Reformed Theology." Turner's is apparently the same view that Michael Van Horn got in trouble and left the school over (12/1/92 CC). We invited Turner in a Jan. 31 letter to clarify his views but he did not reply to our letter.
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