VOL. XVIII  NO. 9    NEWS & VIEWS, NOTES & QUOTES, TO WARN & INFORM    May 1, 2001

ABORTION: DESTROYING UNWANTED CHILDREN—When abortion was declared legal in the U.S., one of its staunchest supporters said it would "usher in an era when every child will be wanted, loved and properly cared for; when the incidence of infanticides and battered children would be sharply reduced." (2/24 World) On the contrary, in the years following 1973, abuse, neglect, abandonment, and even infanticide skyrocketed. Since then, our media and social elites, to justify abortion, seem to presume that unwanted children would be better off dead. And they say destroying "unwanted" children right up until a moment before birth, is enshrined as a sacred constitutional right.

TV'S ADDICTIVE POWER—Is there any greater time thief in the world than television? Its dramatic offerings are increasingly unsavory. Its news coverage is blatantly biased yet numbers of Christian women succumb to its addictive powers. TV's influence is progressive. The more you watch, the more you want to watch. The more you want to watch, the more you tolerate. The more you tolerate, the more you imitate. Ultimately, TV takes much more than time. (Beneth Jones, Canadian Revivalist

GATES GIVES MILLIONS TO PLANNED PARENTHOOD—The International Planned Parenthood Federation says it has received, spread over five years, an $8.8 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (3/30 Sword of the Lord). These funds will help the British-based IPPF promote abortion and "family planning."

HOMOSEXUALITY TAUGHT IN SCHOOLS—Dr. James Dobson in his March 20 Focus on the Family radio broadcast, warned that a "national homosexualization of schools" is coming (4/2 Chr. News). He called on parents to take action against a "recent push to integrate pro-gay curriculum in schools." He believes it's a "nationwide effort that will soon put almost every child at risk." 

FIRST DUTCH HOMOSEXUAL 'MARRIAGE'—Two homosexuals are the first to be wed under a Netherlands' new same-sex marriage law (4/14 World). This new law is just one more sign of Dutch depravity. This is the country that has legalized drugs, prostitution, and euthanasia. So no shock that same-sex 'marriage' now joins the list. 

MORE MUSLIM VIOLENCE, INDONESIA—Christian families in Indonesia's Maluku islands are forced at gunpoint to convert to Islam in rituals that include genital mutilation for females and dull-bladed circumcision for males (4/23 CT). Those refusing to convert are killed by jihad warriors who later display the severed heads of some as a warning to others. Indonesia is 83 percent Muslim.

GUNS ALSO SAVE LIVES—When have you heard a story on the national evening news about a citizen saving a life with a gun? A Yale Law scholar and gun control researcher complains that the mainline media consistently ignore the facts about gun use. Civilians' firearms stop about 2 million crimes per year (4/14 World). That's five times more often than they are used to commit crimes. In 98 percent of the cases, just brandishing a gun is enough to stop a crime. Other research shows that only one out of 1,000 defensive gun uses results in the attacker's death. 

TED TURNER 'CAN'T TAKE MORE BAD NEWS'—Media mogul Ted Turner says he found himself friendless, alone and stripped of his enormous power after being eased out of his top role at AOL Time Warner (4/16 HT). He said, "I felt like Job…I mean, I can't take any more bad news." He continued, "I've lost my job and my wife this year." He said he felt suicidal after the breakup of his marriage to Jane Fonda partly because of her "becoming a practicing Christian." But for Turner, bad news will get worse if he continues to reject the Good News. 

CATHOLIC CHARISMATICS & SPIRITUALISM—Brazil is the largest Roman Catholicism country in the world, but is really a Spiritualist country (see 12/15 CC). It could well be the number one Spiritualist country in the world with an estimated two hundred million Catholics. It is estimated that two-thirds of these Brazilians are Spiritualists or something close (4/2 Chr. News). They are generally religious charismatics with organized sect meetings about spirit life and spirit worship. 

PORN WENT MAINSTREAM UNDER CLINTON—The Clinton administration virtually stopped prosecuting obscenity cases, allowing pornography to become mainstream. The Justice Department prosecuted the worst offenders during the Reagan-Bush years, but under Clinton the floodgates were opened. Larry Flynt is quoted: "We've had eight years of lack of prosecution of a sex industry." So the film industry has gone from 1,000 porno films eight years ago to 10,000 last year….plus all the Internet stuff! The Internet is now the sexual medium of choice, offering pictures, videos, and web cams for every perversion (Gene Veith, 4/7 World). Porn now takes in more money than rock and country music combined. It is a type of adultery, in that imaginations (lusts) are the moral and spiritual equivalent of actions.

RAVING ABOUT ECSTACY—Huntsville teens call Ecstacy, the drug of choice at all-night raves, "fabulous." "It's like your sense of feeling is magnified 10 times." "Your whole body just tingles." (See 2/1 CC)

FIRST BAPTIST-HAMMOND, CALLS NEW PASTOR—Dr. Walter Beebe reports in the Jan. - Mar. Church Bus News that the First Baptist Church of Hammond, Ind. by a 96 percent vote March 7 has called Dr. Jack Schaap as their new pastor. He is the son-in-law of Dr. Jack Hyles who pastored the church 41 years until his recent death.

AILING BILL BRIGHT BUSY, RECEIVES AWARDS—Campus Crusade for Christ Pres. Bill Bright is planning how to expand his already wide-ranging ministry, despite his struggle with serious illnesses—pulmonary fibrosis and prostate cancer. The co-founder of the 50-year-old ministry is editing books, preparing video presentations and making plans to foster the training of future Christian leaders through a university housed at New York's Empire State building…."His attitude is so consistent and refreshing that it's hard to be sad around him," said Crawford Loritts, associate director of Campus Crusade USA (4/10 Religion Today). Bright, 79, the 1996 winner of the notorious Templeton Prize for Progress in Religion, is being honored by fellow evangelicals. The Evangelical Christian Publishers Association plans to give him its Gold Medallion Lifetime Achievement Award in July. The NAE chose him for its first-ever Lifetime Ministry Award March 7. Sadly, CCC has become more pro-charismatic/Catholic and ecumenical in recent decades. 

WHICH CHURCHES ARE GROWING—A new study by Hartford Seminary reveals that churches that have "explicit, specific definitions and goals for their members and high standards for personal morality and communal justice" report greater vitality and growth in participation (4/23 Chr. Today). Evangelicals founded 58 percent of all new churches between 1990 and 2000, of which the Assemblies of God mounted the largest effort. Mormons and Muslims have started more congregations than liberal and moderate Protestants and Roman Catholics combined. Liberal and moderate Protestant churches are adapting contemporary worship styles. "A rule of thumb is that the Episcopal churches using drums are growing." 

WILKINSON'S PRAYER OF JABEZ—Bruce Wilkinson, founder/pres. of Walk Thru the Bible Ministries, is a popular speaker at ecumenical forums such as Promise Keepers, Campus Crusade, Navigators, and Focus on the Family. His best-selling pocket-size book The Prayer of Jabez examines a very simple prayer in 1Chr. 4:10 Wilkinson says, "People are…excited about what happens to them when they pray Jabez. They get a whole new vision of what can happen to them. God can bless them a whole lot, but they must ask for it…." But a Texas pastor, says, "What I stress is for people not to think of it as a magic potion. It doesn't work that way…Faith has to be in God, not in the prayer." Wilkinson adds, "We think that a thing outside of us is what blesses us. But, in reality, blessing occurs in your heart." (4/13 Religion Today). He says if we'll just pray the prayer of Jabez, word-for-word for a month, we'll see God's power released in our lives. He is selling Jabez's prayer as a Scripturally sanctioned incantation. Perhaps thousands who have prayed this prayer attribute their prosperity to the mindless repetition of the prayer. Jesus counseled against the selfish use of vain repetition. An extensive discussion of this book is available at this Web address: http://www.rapidnet.com/~jbeard/bdm/ or for $1 from Biblical Discernment Min., PO Box 679, Bedford, IN 47421.

LCMS PRESIDENT PASSES—Dr. A. L. Barry, president of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, died March 23. He is said to have done his best, in his eight years at the helm of the 2.6 million-member LCMS, to set it on an orthodox Lutheran course and return it to pure doctrine.

CT PRAISED C.S. LEWIS—The 4/23 Christianity Today, the main New Evangelical magazine, praised C.S. Lewis in an article entitled "Myth Matters." It said he bequeathed us a method and a language for sharing the gospel with the modern and postmodern world. It called Lewis "the 20th century's greatest Christian apologist" and praised his mythical works. His Chronicles of Narnia incorporates stories from both Christian and pagan traditions and mixes metaphors and symbols (e.g., Aslan is "a symbol of Christ," but also a real lion). CT said: "In Aslan, Christ is made tangible, knowable, real." The CT article said "Lewis was adept at delving into the roots of paganism and properly assessing where those roots are compatible with those of Christianity…." Such are some confusing musings of New Evangelicalism and one of its patron saints! Lewis rejected inerrancy, accepted evolution and purgatory, and termed himself "very Catholic." His closest friends were Catholics and he is well received by Mormons (9/15/98 CC). Martyn Lloyd-Jones doubted whether Lewis was even a Christian. 

BATTLE FOR THE BIBLE IN THE 21st CENTURY is the title of a recent book by Dr. R.L. Hymers, Jr. Conservative Southern Baptist leaders claim the battle for control of the SBC is over and that they have won. But is it, and have they? Dr. Hymers writes (p35): "I don't think so. This book has been written to show that the battle to save the [SBC] is far from over. To be sure, there has been a radical move toward a conservative position on the Bible in the leadership of the Convention and in the six Southern Baptist seminaries, but this does not mean that the tide has been turned in a way that affects the churches and the corporate future of the SBC. It should be remembered that there are 54 liberal schools and only six conservative schools, with a student body of only 12,748. The liberals are training 113,581 at the same time. Thus, ninety percent of SBC students are being trained by liberal institutions." You might quibble with the precise interpretation of the numbers, but be sure you don't miss the very important point being made. The book lists the 60 schools by name and number of students. Hymers documents the extreme liberalism of some SBC college/university presidents, such as Mercer University President R. Kirby Godsey. He points out that Paige Patterson and Judge Paul Pressler led the early struggle for inerrancy. But he took the latter to task for his recent book's omitting any mention of Harold Lindsell's vital contribution to the battle, and for criticizing the major work of Bill Powell. The last almost half of Hymer's 144-page book is mostly appendices, personal anecdotes, and a resumption of "decisionism" warnings partly covered in his previous book. Dr. David Beale says this book is "the most up-to-date account of core problems within the SBC in particular, and the broader evangelical movement as a whole." It's available from Dr. Hymers: 818/352-0452.

LAHAYE SUES LEFT BEHIND PRODUCERS—Author Tim LaHaye filed suit against Namesake Entertainment and Cloud Ten Pictures (Peter and Paul LaLonde, Toronto) in July claiming these producers broke their promise to provide a $40 million production movie (4/23 CT). At stake also are the film rights to "Left Behind, The Kids" and LaHaye's desire for a strong Christian message.

WCC WANTS GLOBAL 'CHRISTIAN' UNITY—In a conclave held recently at Fuller Seminary, the "World Council of Churches proposed a new worldwide Christian forum that would unite all… denominations from around the world"; that this proposed "forum" would include not only the present WCC denominations, but also groups that are not currently "part of the WCC such as Roman Catholics, Pentecostals and Evangelicals." (Fund. Digest) 

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