GORES ENTERTAIN HOMOSEXUALS—Vice Pres. and Mrs. Albert Gore opened their home in March to 150 homosexual political activists and praised the leadership of the Human Rights Campaign Fund, possibly the largest gay lobby (Jerry Falwell's 4/95 Nat'l Liberty Journal). Gore told these perverts: "It's a wonderful thing to do what you're doing, and that's devoting your lives to others." He said: "This dedication is an out-growth of the way you live your entire lives." Mrs. Gore added: "We very deeply share your vision of a society that is fair and free of discrimination for [gays]." A prominent national gay paper recently highlighted Pres. Clinton's commitment to homosexuals by featuring 26 openly-homosexual members of his cabinet.
SO. BAPTIST WOMAN PREACHER SPEAKS OUT—Amy Mears is Assoc. Pastor at Buechel Park Baptist Church in Louisville and a Ph.D. candidate in Preaching at Southern Seminary (SBC). The American Baptist Churches' 4/95 WATCHword (quoting from a So. Baptist Women in Ministry newsletter) quotes Mears thusly: "[The apostle Paul] displays so many different shades of personality in his writings in the New Testament that sometimes it's difficult to reconcile one with the other. I usually find it hard to get along with Paul. There seem to be many folks around who like to read to me from Ephesians 5 and I Cor. 14 and point out for me "my place" in the church and at home based on Paul's words..." She adds: "God called me...The church 'authorities' support of my preaching and my ministry has got to be irrelevant..." Christian News (10/11/93) says there are about 900 Southern Baptist women clergy, compared with 75 in 1978.
TAMMY BAKKER'S NEW HUSBAND INDICTED—Building contractor Roe Messner, husband of the former Tammy Faye Bakker, faces up to 41 months in jail if convicted on fraud charges brought by the U.S. Department of Justice (5/95 Charisma). He helped build Jim Bakker's Heritage USA theme park then married the flamboyant Tammy Faye in 1993 after she divorced Bakker while he was in prison. Former televangelist Bakker was released last year after serving nearly five years for defrauding donors in the PTL scandal.
ECUMENICAL NATIONAL DAY OF PRAYER—Shirley (Mrs. James) Dobson is chairman of the May 4 National Day of Prayer. Co-Chairmen are Pat Boone and Vonette Bright. Liaisons are Rabbi Joshua Habermann, Cardinal John O'Connor, and D. James Kennedy. Confirmed participants include Cardinal Bevilacqua and Rabbi Y. Eckstein (3/20 C.News). Bill Bright, Luis Palau, Joe Stowell, and others will meet for prayer at Moody Church (2/15 CC).
SEN. HATFIELD: 'HIGH BAPTIST' OR CATHOLIC?—Sen. Mark Hatfield served for years on the board of Western Conservative Baptist Seminary, but in 1982 was referred to as "an American Baptist." He has been strongly identified for many years with left-wing causes. Catholic News Service (1/95) said when things are rough for Sen. Hatfield, and even when they aren't, he goes to a Catholic church in Washington to pray. He also sometimes attends Mass (4/95 The Berean Call). He says he is a Baptist, but a "high Baptist."
HAGIN, COPELAND AS HERETICAL AS MORMONS?—Cult-watcher and Christian Research Institute president Hank Hanegraaff compares charismatics Kenneth Hagin, Sr. and Kenneth Copeland to "wolves in sheep's clothing." He describes their Word-Faith movement as being as heretical as the Mormon Church. (5/95 Charisma). He says that within a faith context, "when you're born again, you not only have salvation, but you have unlimited health and unlimited wealth. All you have to do is visualize it, speak it into existence." (10/24 CT). Hagin brazenly declares that it is always God's will to heal cancer, "that no believer should ever be sick." (10/10 C.News). Copeland says of an Oral Roberts healing meeting: "One woman with cancer spit that cancer up, right in the middle of the floor." (9/94 BVOV). This "name it and claim it" Word-Faith movement indeed seems rather heretical.
FULLER SEMINARY & INERRANCY—A Fuller Seminary pamphlet, "What We Believe And Teach," declares: "We recognize the importance that the word inerrancy has attained in the thinking of many of our scholarly colleagues....Where the focus switches to an undue emphasis on matters like chronological details, precise sequence of events, and numerical allusions, we would consider the term misleading and inappropriate..." That is, the Bible is truth mixed with error.
MORE FALWELL NEW EVANGELICALISM—Dr. Jerry Falwell recently invited the ecumenical Promise Keepers for a rally at his Liberty University. (See 3/15 CC). Liberty V-P Elmer Towns in Falwell's 4/95 National Liberty Journal praises Promise Keepers in a long article. Towns spoke at the recent NAE convention. Sen. Phil Gramm, an Episcopalian, is Liberty U.'s commencement speaker May 6. Falwell's Oct. Super Conference will feature three ecumenical Southern Baptists (A. Rogers, D. Ring, and B. Smith) and E.V. Hill.
RENO QUOTE A HOAX—Concerning the widely reported definition of a cult, attributed to U.S. Atty. General Janet Reno (see 3/15 CC): Her acting Assistant AG denies that she said that.
ANKERBERG & ECT—We have just read John Ankerberg's 1/95 book, "Protestants & Catholics: Do They Now Agree?", where he and co-author John Weldon discuss the revolutionary 3/94 ECT ("Evangelical and Catholics Together") accord authored by pro-Catholic Charles Colson and liberal Catholic priest Richard Neuhaus. This unbiblical ecumenical agreement, signed or endorsed by 20 "evangelicals" and 20 Catholics (see 4/15/94 CC), declared that "Evangelicals and Catholics are brothers and sisters in Christ." The book asks: Can it be maintained that Catholics and Evangelicals are part of the body of Christ while disagreeing on the gospel message itself? It rightly notes that Evangelical leaders who signed the accord "have muddied the waters concerning the nature of the true gospel" and seem to imply that whether or not a new convert joins an Evangelical or Catholic church doesn't matter. It says: "Biblically it will be impossible for Evangelicals and Catholics to reach agreement until one side radically changes its stance." Ankerberg and Weldon conclude that until there is a biblical reformation in Rome, "the obstacles between Catholicism and Evangelicalism are insurmountable." Yet Ankerberg, MacArthur, Stowell, and Sproul met with Colson and others January 19 to "clarify" [and salvage?] the notorious ECT!
MacARTHUR, STOWELL ENDORSE 'CLARIFIED' ECT?—At Chuck Colson's request, evangelical critics of the ecumenical 3/94 "Evangelicals and Catholics Together" (ECT) agreement met with him and ECT-signers J.I. Packer and Bill Bright to "clarify" the unscriptural ECT pact. ECT critics included: John Ankerberg, MBI-pres. Joseph Stowell, John MacArthur, R.C. Sproul, Michael Horton, John Woodbridge and D. James Kennedy. BDM editor Rick Miesel has viewed the six-part video series of this meeting, and sent helpful notes and comments. Various reports have said the two sides "clarified" their [theological] differences on ECT. A news release said: "Evangelical Leaders Resolve Differences on Evangelical-Catholic Paper". Dave Hunt said: "I was shocked that the anti-ECT group would agree to the news release...even without the misleading title. It seems that to prevent a split among evangelicals, the anti-ECT group agreed under pressure to something which they never intended." Miesel says: "The key here is that MacArthur, Ankerberg and Kennedy admit to [helping write] this clarification statement and find it acceptable to engage in para-church cooperation [with 'evangelically committed Roman Catholics']." MacArthur and the others thus lend credence to, serve as "bridges" to, and refuse to separate from, those who promote ecumenical endeavors with Roman Catholics. The "clarified" ECT Doctrinal Statement changed nothing.
STOWELL, HYBELS PROMOTE PALAU CRUSADE—Luis Palau will bring his ecumenical evangelism crusade to Chicago in 1996 for eight weeks of regional meetings. Moody Bible Institute Pres. Joseph Stowell serves in a "Leadership Chair" for this. He says: "Since the time of D.L. Moody, God has raised up godly and effective evangelists who without compromise [!] share the commitment to reach the world for Jesus Christ. Our friend, Luis Palau, is among them." Bill Hybels says: "I pray that all churches will come together to proclaim the Gospel throughout Chicago..." Moody Church Pastor Erwin Lutzer and Wheaton College leaders are involved in this. Palau crusades sometimes involve Catholic leaders. Ian Chapman of Northern Baptist Theological Seminary is a "Vice-chair" of this crusade.
MRS. CHARLES STANLEY RE-FILES FOR DIVORCE—Anna J. Stanley, wife of Radio-TV preacher Dr. Charles Stanley, pastor of First Baptist Church, Atlanta, and a former Southern Baptist Convention president, has re-filed for divorce. (4/3 Chr.News). She originally filed for divorce in June 1993 but his attorney got her to amend the lawsuit to seek a legal separation instead, while seeking reconciliation. (5/15/94 CC).
MARK NOLL: EVANGELICAL, OR ECUMENICAL LIBERAL?—Mark Noll, as a Wheaton College professor and contributing editor of Christianity Today, has solid new-evangelical ties. A three-page 6/88 Moody article praised him as an evangelical. But some of his statements sound rather ecumenical/liberal. He says: "If a card-carrying evangelical can take a new look at a Roman Catholic, then maybe an evangelical can take a new look at someone who works for the National Council of Churches." (5/15/89 CC). And, "I'm just immensely encouraged whenever I study Thomas Aquinas or...Soren Kierkegaard, etc., who are not hindered by Christian allegiance but are liberated to their greatest work by Christian allegiance." Carl F.H. Henry in critiquing Noll's recent book says, "He sells inerrancy down the river." (3/18 World). Noll says it's a tragedy that modern evangelicals have failed as intellectuals (4/95 P.Helps). He confusingly says that evangelical scholarship has been damaged rather than helped by the investigations of Henry Morris and other creation scientists. Noll was one of the forty signers of the 1994 "Evangelicals and Catholics Together" document.
A NEW SOFTNESS WITHIN FUNDAMENTALISM—In the 50s and 60s, the Conservative Baptists were the Fundamentalists--the Separatists among Baptists in the North. They had fought a noble battle, but finally had to come out of the old Northern Baptist Convention in the 60s. Soon after the separation and the formation of the CBA, there began to emerge a strange spirit. Many began to feel that we needed to be more "Christian," more practical, more communicative, more gentle in our stand for God. The terms "soft core" and "hard core" were used to describe the two camps that emerged. The soft policy was to be practical at the expense of being righteous. The results sought for were more important than the means. These compromisers believed that part of the movement was too hard. Over 400 churches left in a division in the 60s. These real fundamentalist churches blossomed and multiplied in the 70s. Now, in the 90s, some of us see a reenactment of the past. There is a new emphasis on methodology and P.R. to grow churches. This new methodology is market-oriented and geared to please the people. Not offending is the cardinal virtue. Personal separation and holiness are pushed back into the dark ages. In spite of greatly increased open sin, the condemnation is softened. Many young preachers today are jealous for the reputation of fundamentalism and want to see real growth. They may be listening to the wrong voices! They do not realize the price paid by the old giants of the faith. They do not know of the anointing of the Holy Spirit and the flames of revival seen by these men. In every generation our battles must be refought. The generation that does not follow the old paths will die as did evangelicalism in England. Some may leave us, a division may occur. We pray it won't happen, but forward we go no matter what! The banner must not be dipped! We must stand until the Saviour declares the battles are over by His return! [Dr. Wayne Van Gelderen, Sr.- Adapted]
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