VOL. XVI NO. 19 NEWS & VIEWS, NOTES & QUOTES, TO WARN & INFORM October 1, 1999
|FREEMASONRY EXPOSED—Freemasonry is a religion and is essentially
incompatible with Christianity. Its "mysteries" are rooted in the pagan
mystery religions of ancient Egypt, Greece and Mesopotamia. The So. Baptist
Convention is the first denomination to essentially bless the Masonic Lodge
(12/1/97 CC). Of the 3.5 million or more Masons in the U.S., about
1.3 million are Southern Baptists (6/1/93 CC). And 14 percent of SB pastors
and 18 percent of SB deacon chairs are Masons. Shriners (Masons who hold
the highest degrees) do many good works, but its initiates make a blood
oath and confession of the demon god Allah as God. A 1994 book by Ron Carlson
and Ed Decker, titled Fast Facts on False Teachings has a revealing
chapter on Freemasonry [Harvest House Pub., 1075 Arrowsmith, Eugene, OR
97402, 255 pages, $11 pp].
GEORGETOWN NAMES FIRST MUSLIM CHAPLAIN—Georgetown University, the oldest Catholic university in the U.S., has appointed its first Muslim chaplain (8/28 Dallas Morn. News). He is believed to be the first Muslim chaplain at any major U.S. university. Georgetown has two rabbis and some part-time Protestant ministers (6/15 CC). Pornographer Larry Flynt lectured there last May.
CLINTON, THE FIRST POSTMODERN PRESIDENT—Postmodern man never lets himself be restricted by a single set of beliefs, relationships, or character traits. Rather, he is ever "reinventing himself." (9/4 World) Pres. Clinton, the first postmodern president, is unencumbered by ideology. He creates his own truth and reinvents himself. In postmodern fashion, Clinton defender Arthur Schlesinger said (1/11 USN&WR): "A question that has no right to be asked doesn't deserve a truthful answer."
FAST FACTS ON FALSE TEACHINGS is the title of a 255-page book by Ron Carlson and Ed Decker. It cites estimates that 50 to 60 million Americans are involved in some form of the occult, and that over 50 million read their horoscopes daily. But it seems to underestimate the number of Catholics worldwide (620 million – this seems low even for 1994 when the book was written, since in 1999 there are over 1 billion), quotes from the NIV, and omits Seventh-day Adventists from a short list of cults (p138). [We note the latter solely because the book is dedicated to Dr. Walter Martin who taught (along with Donald Barnhouse) that the SDA was not a cult.] But the book is still a very helpful reference tool. It has chapters on: Atheism, Buddhism, Evolution, Islam, Hinduism, Yoga, Reincarnation, Jehovah's Witnesses, Moon, Mormonism, New Age Movement, Prosperity Theology, Catholicism, TM, and Satanism. Get it from: Harvest House Publishers, 1075 Arrowsmith, Eugene, OR 97402, $11 postpaid.
ROCK CONCERT VIOLENCE—Thousands are injured each year at rock concerts—at least 5,711 in 1998 alone (9/6 USN&WR). Hard-driving acts in the newly popular "rap-rock" genre whip mostly male crowds into a frenzy. Misogyny seems on the rise in rock music. Rap-rock lyrics describe raping, beating, and dismembering women.
THE BIG HOMOSEXUAL LIE—The most fundamental lie, repeated over and over, about homosexuality is that homosexuals are born that way. There is no scientific proof that homosexuality is genetic (9/99 Nat'l Lib. Jrnl.).
AIDS IS STILL DEADLY—For a brief time drug combinations were dramatically reducing AIDS deaths, but now the number of new U.S. cases is static at 40,000 each year (9/13 USN&WR). AIDS deaths plunged 42 percent from 1996 to 1997 but only 20 percent from 1997 to 1998. Most who could benefit from newer drugs already receive them, while drug resistance and side effects force others off medication. AIDS is now the leading cause of death among 25-to-44-year-old black men.
A RIGHT TO BEAR ARMS—The Second Amendment does not grant a right to keep and bear arms, but rather recognizes that pre-existing right. "As the U.S. Supreme Court wrote in the late nineteenth century, the right to keep and bear arms is independent of the Constitution." (3/30/98 New Amer.) What anti-gun lobbyists ignore is that almost all gun owners are law-abiding (9/7 Huntsville. Times). With 230 million guns owned by Americans, only a tiny portion of these weapons are employed illegally.
BROTHER ANDREW'S OPEN DOORS—The Australian Beacon (5/99) says Fundamentalists should not support Brother Andrew's Open Doors since it accepts the premise of extra-scriptural revelation. It quotes a recent Open Doors paper as saying it "is no longer surprised when we hear…that a converted Muslim has been led to Jesus by means of a dream or vision." Open Doors linked last year with the ecumenical Global March for Jesus, and does not have a "standpoint on doctrinal issues." (10/15/98 CC) Brother Andrew, of God's Smuggler fame, guested with Robert A. Schuller in 1994 in the Crystal Cathedral.
SLAYING THE DRAGON OF EVOLUTION is the title of an excellent new 85-page book which is a 12-lesson study refuting the hoax of evolution. Isaac Manly, a retired surgeon and former theistic evolutionist [religious affiliation?], is the author. The recent Kansas school board ban on the mention of evolution makes this a timely topic. Get this helpful book from: College Press, P. O. Box 1132, Joplin, MO 64802, $5.99 + $1.59 p & h.
MacARTHUR LEAVES 'INCARNATIONAL SONSHIP'—Popular Bible teacher Dr. John MacArthur now says: "I want to state publicly that I have abandoned the doctrine of 'incarnational sonship.' Careful study and reflection have brought me to understand that Scripture does indeed present the relationship between God the Father and Christ the Son as an eternal Father-Son relationship. I no longer regard Christ's sonship as a role He assumed in His incarnation." We applaud his willingness to reverse himself and acknowledge that his earlier teaching did not square with Scripture, though he still denies that it is "rank heresy." Will "fundamentalists" who have defended his "serious error" teachings now do a sudden reversal? Will MacArthur now recant his teaching on the blood of Christ which many fundamentalists regard as heresy? His incarnational Sonship (and other) teaching caused a schism in the IFCA a decade ago (see 2/1/90 & 11/15/95 CCs). How now will IFCA leaders, who continued to promote him, and other MacArthur defenders react to his reversal? IFCA's Voice magazine for many years has kept right on promoting MacArthur ministries in full-page ads. Should MacArthur and IFCA leaders who sided with him now apologize to the IFCA for the great harm the "Sonship" error has caused to that fellowship?
SEPARATION FROM DISOBEDIENT BRETHREN—There is a basic difference between separation from religious apostates and separation from erring Christian brethren: separation from a brother is not irrevocable. Separation from a Christian brother should never be a total rejection which allows no place for repentance. Allowance should be made for ignorance, errors of judgment and momentary weakness. Nevertheless, when Christian leaders begin to steer God's people into disobedience and compromise they must be scripturally rebuked and their error exposed. This principle of rebuke and correction is often illustrated in the Bible: Lev. 19:17, Josh. 22:11-20, Pr. 25:12, Ezra 9-10, Neh. 13:13-29, Mat. 18:15-18, 1 Cor. 5:1-13, 2 Thes. 3:6, 14-15, Tit. 3:9-10, and in many other passages. [Dr. David O. Beale, SBC House on the Sand?]
HERESY & APOSTASY—Apostasy is a rejection of truth. Heresy is a perversion of truth. Of the two, heresy is in many ways the more dangerous…because it is harder to detect. By its very nature, heresy is closer to the truth than apostasy. The closer to the genuine the counterfeit becomes, the more insidious it becomes. No genuine believer would be tempted to embrace apostasy, but many have succumbed to the threat of heresy. For this very reason God clearly commands us to reject the unrepentant heretic. [Rev. Milton Jones, 8/15/89 CC]
CAMPOLO'S CONFUSING ATTEMPT TO CLARIFY—Tony Campolo in a letter to Jerry Falwell tries to explain his recent statement on Christ, judgment, and redemption (9/9 Nat'l Lib. Journal). He says: "Certainly I believe that Jesus Christ is the one and only Savior of humanity." He then says Rom. 2:14-16 "suggests that the work of Christ on the cross may be broader than some of us think", and quotes Billy Graham as saying that "on Judgment Day, there may be people who enter the Kingdom who have not called themselves Christians." Campolo stands by his statement on The Charlie Rose Show that "I am not convinced that Jesus only lives in Christians."
DUNN RECEIVES AWARD—Southern Baptist liberal James Dunn is the sixth recipient of the Religious Freedom Award from the Associated Baptist Press (8/28 Dallas Morn. News). He retired from an 18-year position as head of the Baptist Joint Committee on Public Affairs. He becomes president of the BJCPA Foundation and joins the faculty of the new Wake Forest Divinity School.
MOODY & UNITY—Moody Bible Institute in recent years has become rather notorious for its ecumenical involvements and speakers. The theme of the Sep-Oct Moody is "Unity." Allen Ross rightly writes: "Unity cannot and should not be maintained when there is doctrinal heresy or persistent disobedience." But he seems not to follow this advice, else he doesn't recognize the "doctrinal heresy" and "persistent disobedience" of Promise Keepers, e.g. He mentions occasions that draw Christians together in a unified effort to help homeless, needy, or others in a crisis. He says: "At such times, our [denominational] differences do not seem to matter as much as ministering to people in Christian love." He says special projects [e.g., Bible translation committees] also draw believers together and help unite the church. He says: "Special movements also draw people together in Christ. For example, Promise Keepers has brought together believers who might otherwise have never done so. What draws them to unite is a shared need.…"
SBC TO REVIEW DOCTRINAL STATEMENT—SBC President Paige Patterson recently appointed a 15-person committee to study the So. Baptist Convention's Baptist Faith & Message statement for possible rewrite (9/2 Ala. Baptist). Adrian Rogers is chairman. Jerry Vines, O.S. Hawkins, Albert Mohler, Richard Land, Charles Kelley, and at least two women are on the committee—along with a Hispanic evangelist and African-American pastor. The BF&M was originally adopted in 1925 and revised in 1963. Patterson does not expect to have a big rewrite.
DOBSON: FROM 'SEEKER SENSITIVE' TO 'SEEKER INSENSITIVE'—Ed Dobson writes (9-10/99 Moody): "Ten years ago we started a Saturday night service at Calvary Church in Grand Rapids. Over 1,000 people come on a Saturday night. One-third of them have never been to church in their lives. Another third of them had dropped out of church years ago. That means two-thirds of these people are unchurched." One-third of them are in their 20s, one-third in their 30s, the rest are 40 and older. He says the [rock] music (alternative, blues, swing) is loud. He usually dresses in old blue jeans and a tee shirt. He said he has discovered in the past 10 years that people don't care about the music and drama, it's not why they come. He says the number one reason unchurched people come is for the sermon—to hear the Bible. He said: "We started out seeker-sensitive. Today you might say we are 'seeker insensitive' because we open the Bible and get in people's faces and tell them Jesus is the only way to heaven." If he dropped the rock music, he would find out in a hurry it really DID matter! Dobson's church hosted the 1988 IFCA convention (4/15/94 CC), and he was named 1993 "Pastor of the Year" by MBI.
ACCC MEETING SPEAKERS—The 58th Convention of the American Council of Christian Churches is set for Oct. 26-28, Hardingville Bible Church, Monroeville, NJ. Rev. Mark Franklin is the host pastor, and the theme is "Opportunities in a New Millennium." Speakers include: Drs. George Youstra, David Beale, John Ashbrook, Jim Singleton, Frank McClelland, John McKnight, Morris McDonald, Ron Cooke, David Natale and Tom Hamilton.
WAKE FOREST'S NEW DIVINITY SCHOOL—Wake Forest University's new divinity school (see 9/15 CC) will take a radical departure from its Baptist heritage, choosing among its faculty a Benedictine monk, a feminist biblical scholar and a theologian who calls God "our motherly father." (8/22 Raleigh News & Observer) This ecumenical school is premised on the belief that denominations don't matter. WFU in 1997 featured a Buddhist monk, a rabbi, snake handler, and Tony Campolo as speakers (10/1/97 CC).
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