VOL. XIII NO. 10 NEWS & VIEWS, NOTES & QUOTES, TO WARN & INFORM May 15, 1996
TV HAS NEGATIVE IMPACT, MORE SEX—A new U.S. News
poll shows two thirds of the public thinks TV shows have a negative impact
on the country and huge majorities believe TV contributes to social problems
like violence, divorce, teen pregnancy and the decline of family values
(4/ 15 USN&WR). In prime time, there is more sex and sex talk
than ever. 61% of Hollywood leaders think TV places too much emphasis on
sex, and 92% say TV does a fair or poor job of encouraging sexual abstinence.
76% of Americans think TV contributes to the problem of teen pregnancy,
while only 37% of Hollywood leaders agree.
DIVORCE CONSEQUENCES—Divorce is bad morally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually. Divorced or separated men receive in-patient psychiatric care 21 times more frequently than do married men, and heighten their risk of cancer (5/4 World). As a rule today, divorced women see a decline in their standard of living of about 73 percent, while divorced men, as a rule, see a gain in theirs of about 42 percent. Daycare costs, and the long-term effects on children, are other consequences to be considered.
SELF-ESTEEM MAY BE BAD FOR YOUR KIDS—An American Association of University Women's study done a few years ago showed adolescent girls are suffering from a near-terminal meltdown of their self-esteem. White high school girls came in at the bottom, followed by white teen-age boys, then African American girls. The highest scores were posted by African American boys (4/ 14 H.Times). The self-esteem scores were roughly the reverse of those groups' actual achievement measurements. In international comparisons, American students have the highest perception of their abilities--and the lowest scores. Murderers, rapists, and terrorists often have qualities associated with high self-esteem--"egotism," "arrogance," "conceit," and "narcissism."
PALAU'S ECUMENICAL CHICAGO CRUSADE—Luis Palau began an 8-week crusade in Chicago on April 4, with over 1,500 churches participating. Moody Church pastor Erwin Lutzer, MBI Pres. Joseph Stowell, & Bill Hybels are supporters (4/8 CT). Speakers include Palau, E.V. Hill, Tony Evans, and Ron Hutchcraft. Rock musicians perform. Individual Catholic priests are involved in leadership roles. Palau is a Promise Keepers speaker.
NEW CATHOLICISM BOOKLET—GFA Missionary David Cox has a neat 24-page booklet, "Should We Worship Mary, the Mother of Jesus?", subtitled "A Biblical Refutation of Mariology." Order from him at: Apdo 19-444, C.P. 03901 D.F. Mexico, MEXICO, $1.00 postpaid. Also avail. in Spanish.
POPE SAYS 'CAN'T KILL IN THE NAME OF GOD'—On a day-long visit last month to Tunisia, Pope John Paul II alluded to the war next door in Algeria by Muslim rebels who have slain scores of intellectuals, journalists, Catholic clergy and foreigners. He told Catholic bishops from tiny Catholic communities in that region: "No one can kill in the name of God." He said: "Despite difficulties and misunderstandings, join with your brothers and sisters, without distinction of origin or religion." (4/15 HT). The Pope believes that Muslims are our "brothers and sisters." He also is apparently ignorant of his own religion's bloody history of "killing in the name of God" during the Crusades, Inquisition, etc., where many hundreds of thousands were killed "in the name of God."
METHODISTS INVITE MRS. CLINTON, REJECT MRS. DOLE—Methodist and First Lady Hillary Clinton addressed the quadrennial United Methodist General Conference in Denver last month. Delegates gave her a standing ovation and turned down an appeal to let Methodist Elizabeth Dole speak. The first family's pro-homosexual pastor Rev. Philip Wogaman argued for a change in Methodist's policy opposing homosexuality, but delegates rejected this by a vote of 577 to 378. Methodist Bishop Judith Craig was the first woman ever to give the opening address. Another speaker, Randy Miller of San Francisco, identified himself as "an African-American, gay male, United Methodist Christian, and child of God." U. Methodists approved plans to seek a merger with the three largest black Methodist churches. They decided that infants and others are considered full members at baptism, instead of waiting until they are older and "born again."
ALCOHOLISM A DISEASE?—Alcohol is the only known "disease" that is: freely sold in a bottle, legally manufactured under license, sold to the public by "good citizens," and approved and promoted by elected political leaders. This "disease" fills jails, puts people on welfare, and provides a steady supply for asylums. It is the only "disease" that employs huge plants with the latest technology and highly skilled personnel to manufacture it. It occupies prime space in magazines and papers and uses radio and television to promote it. It is the only "disease" that government puts a tax on, and requires a government license to sell. Brilliant men of science and medicine cannot tell you if it is spread by virus or germ! It is surely a strange "disease." It can only be "cured" when the "patient" refuses to open the bottle, or is in a location where it is not obtainable. [Adapted from 4/96 Foundation art. by K.W. Beyer).
WARNING: PROMISE KEEPERS IS DANGEROUS!—Pastor Jack Stephens warns: "The Promise Keepers promise to break down denominational barriers is a smoke screen for destroying all doctrinal barriers." (3/96 OBF Visitor). Dr. Ralph Colas says: "As a reporter who covered [the Atlanta PK Clergy meeting] with press credentials, I would describe it as a meeting which included compromise, ecumenism, apostasy, Jesuit casuistry (the end justifies the means), and hyper-emotionalism, along with a theology based on relationships rather than Biblical truth." Dr. Ernest Pickering warns: "To encourage men to support their pastor and their church even though neither is following the Word of God is to compromise the truth." Dr. Don Jasmin says PK is the "most dangerous new movement down the ecumenical pike in the last 50 years."
PK & CATHOLICS—In recent articles we have documented increasing Catholic involvement in the burgeoning Promise Keepers movement. The 3-4/96 Foundation says: "Some people find it difficult to believe that Roman Catholics are actually participants in the Promise Keepers movement, but it is true. A Promise Keepers Wake Up Call brochure distributed in San Luis Obispo, Calif., urges pastors, churches and their men to attend special rallies during March, one of which is to be held at the St. Rose Catholic Church in Paso Robles. This fact was confirmed by a phone call to the PK leader in that church." The 4/29 Chr. Today quotes a Catholic Bishops official: "Promise Keepers re-ignites in men an awareness of the spiritual dimension in life and offers them a safe place in which to find support...for Christian values and virtues." The CT article said PK representatives will be among the speakers at a May 31-June 2 Catholic men's conference in Steubenville, Ohio. Dr. Ernest Pickering says: "To worship and cooperate with Roman Catholics and others who are in doctrinal error promotes the idea that correct doctrine is less important than fellowship."
ED DOBSON WANTS PK TO INCLUDE WOMEN CLERGY?—Some who agree with Promise Keepers's hyper-inclusivist policy on breaking down racial and denominational barriers, are concerned that gender barriers are allowed to stand. Ed Dobson (pastor of the M.R. DeHaan Calvary Church, and former Falwell assistant) went to the recent Promise Keepers Clergy Conference in Atlanta with a racially diverse pastors' group from Grand Rapids. He said: "I was bothered by the emphasis on the 'masculine context.' I believe in accountability with other men. But Jesus did not come to promote a masculine context. He came to reconcile us to God and each other across racial, ethnic, and gender divisions." (4/5 Chr. Today). Dobson is now a Senior Editor of the mainline new-evangelical Christianity Today magazine founded by Billy Graham.
SCHULLER TO PASS BATON TO SON—Robert H. Schuller announced last month that he eventually will pass over the reins of his $52 million-a-year Crystal Cathedral Ministries to his son, Robert A. Schuller (4/6 Houston Chronicle). The younger Schuller, who has been divorced and remarried, says his personal experiences help him relate to church-goers of the 1990s who may not live in nuclear families (4/15 Chr. News). The elder Schuller's blend of theology and pop psychology is known as "possibility thinking." His 1982 book on self-esteem redefined and denied many Bible doctrines. It said hell is the "loss of pride," and that "...a person is in hell when he has lost his self-esteem...."
BAYLOR: DANCING IS IN, JESUS IS OUT?—Southern Baptists had forbidden on-campus dancing at Baylor University since its founding in 1845. The ban was lifted in Jan., and the first official dance occurred April 18, as about 10,000 students cheered. Bands performed country, rock and roll, and rhythm and blues (4/19 HT). The next week, about half the students signed a petition protesting a 20-minute talk by Franklin Graham, Billy Graham's son (4/28 HT). His great "sin"? He said that those who did not accept Jesus Christ as their Savior were condemned to hell. Some Jewish and Christian students were offended by Graham's "attack" on their beliefs, and claimed that this went against Baylor's religious policy as a nondenominational school.
GRAHAM'S DAUGHTER A PREACHER—Billy Graham's "preacher" daughter, Anne Graham Lotz, was canceled from speaking at the Oklahoma Baptist General Convention's annual Evangelism Conference in 1993 (1/16/93 HT). But Texas Southern Baptists featured her "stirring preaching" at its Evangelism Conference last January (4/5 Sword). Graham has praised his daughter's preaching abilities and seems to condone this.
MAX LUCADO DEPICTS JESUS AS "THE EVERYMAN"—Max Lucado is minister of the Oak Hills Church of Christ in San Antonio and a popular author. In his office hangs a sketch of Jesus laughing hysterically. Lucado's books depict Jesus in a relaxed, Everyman sort of way (4/13 DallasMorn.News). Rick Miesel says: "Lucado's touchy-feely writing style appears to be an attempt to get the reader to identify with the human side of Jesus. The result is heresy at best and blasphemy at worst." Yet Moody Monthly has articles by him, and Promise Keepers featured him as a speaker at its Atlanta Clergy meeting.
FUNDAMENTALISTS BY BIRTH BUT NOT BATTLE—Many younger fundamentalists have grown up in homes of fundamentalists, attended fundamental churches and fundamental schools. They are fundamentalists by birth, but not by battle. Their convictions have never been challenged. They have not crossed swords to defend the truth. They have paid no price to wear the badge of Fundamentalist. A man's true colors must be tested by battle. These "peace time" fundamentalists face the peril of losing the spirit of militancy which has always characterized fundamentalism. [Stephen Spence, 3/96 OBF Visitor]
ACCC MISSION & PURPOSE—The following Mission and Purpose Statement was adopted by the Executive Committee of the American Council of Christian Churches at its meeting in Monroeville, NJ, April 16: "The American Council of Christian Churches is a Fundamentalist multi-denominational organization whose purposes are to provide information, encouragement and assistance to Bible-believing churches, fellowships and individuals; to preserve our Christian heritage through exposure of, opposition to, and separation from doctrinal impurity and compromise in current religious trends and movements; to protect churches from religious and political restrictions, subtle or obvious, that would hinder their ministries for Christ; and to promote obedience to the inerrant Word of God."
RECENT DEATHS—Word of Life founder Jack Wyrtzen died last month at age 82. *** Former Calif. Graduate School of Theology pres. and Falwell associate Holland London died last month at age 88. *** Longtime Baptist Bible Fellowship pastor and leader Truman Dollar died March 26.
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