VOL. XIX  NO. 13      NEWS & VIEWS, NOTES & QUOTES, TO WARN & INFORM      October 2002

CHURCH IRRELEVANT IN EUROPE?—For a majority of Europeans, the church seems wholly irrelevant. Mostly only hollow shells remain of the institution that dominated Europe for 1,500 years. For example, a century ago, 98 percent of Dutch people attended church regularly; within two generations the percentage fell into the low teens. Today it's under 10 percent. Almost half the church buildings in Holland have been destroyed or converted into restaurants, art galleries, or condominiums (9/9 Chr. Today). The U.S. seems to be headed down a similar decadent road in a declining culture. Too many in our abundantly-blessed, once-great nation no longer see the need to pray or worship.

CATHOLICS BELIEVE IN SALVATION BY WORKS—Rome's position has always amounted to salvation by works whereas Biblical Christianity contends for salvation by grace. The Ontario Conference of Catholic Bishops recently said: “….As Catholics, we believe salvation to be a life-long process, begun at our baptism and completed only when we are finally united with God in heaven.” (5-7/02 Canadian Revivalist) This is further evidence that Rome hasn't changed.

CALIFORNIA CONTROLLED BY LIBERALS—California is a sad example of what happens when liberals take over a state. It leads the nation in enshrining homosexual behavior in law. It is now state law that: 1) All K-12 schoolchildren must be taught to “appreciate” various sexual orientations. 2) Public-school teachers and counselors must identify children with the potential to be “intolerant” of homosexuality—and refer them for retraining. 3) School sports teams that object to homosexual or transsexual behavior may be barred…. 4) All taxpayers must fund marriage-equivalent benefits for homosexual partners of state employees. 5) Nonprofit groups (e.g., Boy Scouts) that refuse to hire homosexuals may be fined up to $150,000 per incident. 6) A person's gender is whatever he or she says it is, regardless of biology. (8/31 World) Liberals attack religious freedom. A current bill would prohibit Christian contractors who object to homosexuality from bidding on state projects. Another would require all foster parents (many are Christians) to undergo homosexual “sensitivity training.”

LOOK WHO FUNDS CHINA'S ABORTIONS—China's “one-child” policy, which involves forced abortion, sterilization and infanticide, has been generously underwritten by the UN Population Fund, the World Bank, the International Planned Parenthood Federation, and globalist groups like Ford and Rockefeller foundations. (8/26 New Amer.). U.S. taxpayers help fund many of these groups. [Note: Homes of women suspected of being pregnant without state permission are destroyed.]

WEB SITE ADDRESS CORRECTION—David Cloud's correct Web site address for ordering Way of Life literature, a huge book on CCM, videos, or for subscribing to his O Timothy magazine mentioned in the Sept. CC is: http://www.wayoflife.org/~dcloud

F. GRAHAM ON ISLAM—Franklin Graham says: “We're not attacking Islam but Islam has attacked us. The God of Islam is not the same God. He's not the Son of God of the … Christian faith. It's a different God, and I believe it is a very evil and wicked religion.” (8/24 HT) Graham protests that Muslims are free to worship and proselytize in the U.S., while Christians are denied these freedoms in most Muslim countries.

YOGA, A HINDU PRACTICE—Yoga is an integral part of the Hindu religion. A saying: “There is no Yoga without Hinduism and no Hinduism without Yoga.” Yoga is a means of reaching an altered state of consciousness—a door to the occult. The 7/22 Army Times had a story about Yoga as part of a proposed new Fitness program. Yoga and Hindu meditation are becoming mainstream, even seen in churches.

OK TO OFFEND CHRISTIANS—A liberal recently said that even if 0.4 percent of our population does not believe in God, they shouldn't be forced to be subjected to the “under God” phrase in the Pledge of Allegiance. However, the same people who believe this, often hypocritically try to force Christians (a much bigger number than 0.4 percent!) to be subjected to the offensive propaganda of evolution, abortion, pornography and profanity, sex ed and homosexuality in schools.

MINORITY TYRANNY OVER MAJORITY—Pat Buchanan, appearing on premiere of Phil Donahue's MSNBC show, said this to Donahue: “You're saying because some people want to be silent, no one can say the Pledge (of Allegiance). I say that is minority tyranny over the rights of the majority….You're a dictatorial liberal, and you don't even know it.” (9/02 NLJ)

WCC UPDATE—It was revealed at the recent Central Committee meeting of the World Council of Churches in Geneva, Switzerland that the liberal Council faces a severe money crunch—due to an unanticipated shortfall in income, which was due to a loss in its investment portfolio and a drop in contributions. The WCC meets in general assembly every eight years, the last such was in Zimbabwe in 1998. It was decided that the 2006 assembly will meet in Porto Alegre, Brazil, reportedly because “the churches [there] have a strong ecumenical commitment and work closely with the Roman Catholic Church and Pentecostals.” ACCC Exec. Sec'y Dr. Ralph Colas attended this and another WCC meeting with press credentials and will prepare an in-depth report, as soon as time and funding permit—probably in November.

CATHOLICS REJECT EVANGELIZATION OF JEWS—The Catholic Church, which spent centuries trying forcibly to convert Jews to “Christianity,” has decided it is theologically unacceptable to target Jews for evangelization (Boston Globe).

E-MAIL—To help avoid viruses, I may not open and reply to your e-mails unless I recognize the sender or feel it safe to do so.

SOUTHWIDE BAPTIST FELLOWSHIP HAS SOUTHERN BAPTIST SPEAKERSSword of the Lord editor Dr. Shelton Smith, in an 8/30 kindly-written bold article, expressed concern regarding a “drift” in the direction of the Southwide Baptist Fellowship, as evidenced by its roster of speakers for its Oct. annual meeting (at Highland Park Baptist Church, TTU). He said: “Listed among the speakers were two Southern Baptists, two or three independent Baptists whose ministries are openly contemporary, and one other man who is a representative of an organization that could not be described as fundamentalist….” The Southern Baptists are John Phillips and Bill Stafford. Other speakers, such as Ralph Sexton, Bradley Price and Gary Coleman have worked in ministry with Southern Baptists/NEs (e.g., Jerry Falwell). Joe Jordan is with Word of Life. (See 8/02 & 9/02 CCs for the new-evangelical direction it is headed.) Dr. Smith says the problem with the SBF is now more than a drift, and says: “I cannot imagine myself, or any other fundamental preacher… sitting quietly by while a major national fundamentalist institution is led off into left field by its leadership….”

'ATTITUDES' OF NEW EVANGELICALISM 1. Disdain toward its fundamentalist heritage 2. Optimism about reaching and winning non-religious conservatives 3. Softer and less precise view of doctrine, with emphasis on the importance of love over doctrine. 4. Willingness to use the world's methods to attract the unsaved 5. Lack of personal separation standards 6. Friendliness toward contemporary scientific views 7. Willingness to accept Charismatic views and/or practices 8. Tolerance toward various eschatological positions 9. Reaction against Scofield Bible dispensationalism 10. Enchantment with contemporary scholarship and intellectualism 11. Softness toward non-conservative views of the Bible 12. Stress upon the need for social concern 13. Desire to cooperate with and work with non-evangelicals in religious matters. [Dr. George Houghton, 7-8/02 Foundation]

'ATTITUDES' OF BIBLICAL FUNDAMENTALISM 1. Belief that doctrine is important 2. Belief that certain doctrines are fundamental or essential to Christianity 3. Literal interpretation of the Bible 4. Recognition of dispensational distinctions within a premillennial system of theology 5. Belief that religious liberalism is not Christianity 6. Unwillingness to cooperate with or coexist with religious liberalism 7. Emphasis upon preaching, evangelism and missions 8. Distrust of secular higher educational philosophy and institutions 9. Personal commitment to holiness and godly living. [Dr. George Houghton, Foundation] Fundamentalists not only separate from unbelief and compromise but also warn about false doctrines and teachers. (See Eph. 5:11, e.g.)

N.C.C. FINANCIAL WOES END?—With staff and program cutbacks, a $500,000 grant from the Lilly Foundation, and a $600,000 deal for advanced rights to the National Council of Churches' New Revised Standard Version, the NCC can eliminate a $830,000 debt to its relief arm, Church World Service (8/31 HT). Meanwhile, the U. Methodist Church, the NCC's largest donor has signaled $195,000 in cutbacks to NCC.

BAPTIST CHURCH CALLS ITS FIRST WOMAN PASTOR—Sarah Shelton has been elected (131-2) the first female pastor of Baptist Church of the Covenant, Birmingham. She is apparently the second woman pastor to serve a Baptist Church in Ala. (8/15 Ala. Baptist). She has been a conference leader for the SBC's Woman's Missionary Union, and was a member of the 1991 Coordinating Council of the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, a breakaway group from the SBC.

ABWE MISSIONARY SPEAKS IN FALWELL'S SBC CHURCH—Last year, speaking at Thomas Road Baptist Church, missionary Jim Bowers – whose wife Roni and daughter were killed after their plane was shot down by a Peruvian jet – said that in his wife's death she reached more people with the Gospel than she ever could in life. (7/02 NLJ)

WHAT HAPPENED TO HINN'S HEALING CENTER?—Flamboyant charismatic evangelist Benny Hinn three years ago promised to build a World Healing Center near Dallas. He requested funds for it but now says the decision to delay the project was divinely inspired (6/23 Dallas Morn. News). His ministry collects about $60 million per year in donations. He is said to have built his theology around a theory that sending money to him will bring even greater riches from God. Critics say the healing center project was a fund-raising gimmick and “one of many false promises he has made to finance a globe-trotting ministry and lavish lifestyle.” They say he leases a personal jet and luxury cars, and is seen on television laden with gold rings, watches and bracelets.

CATHOLIC PRIEST SPEAKS FOR HCJB RADIO & IBS—Roman Catholic scholar Cosme Damian Vivas was one of the speakers at a conference on August 13-15 at the Larson Center in Quito, Ecuador. It was sponsored jointly by HCJB World Radio and the International Bible Society. Vivas, who is with the Greater Archdiocese Seminary in Colom, Ecuador, is a Greek scholar. Such ecumenical affiliation is open disobedience to the Word of God. (David Cloud, (8/30 FBIS) HCJB, the first missionary radio station, was founded in 1931 by Christian & Missionary Alliance Bible believers, but has promoted ecumenical programs, and employed over 100 Roman Catholics. It is a member of the NRB. (7/15/87 CC).

THE OPEN VIEW OF GOD—Dr. Gregory Boyd, theology professor at Bethel College & Seminary (MN) and pastor of Woodland Hills Baptist Church, is at the center of the open theism controversy which questions the foreknowledge and omniscience of God. Boyd is quoted in the 8/02 OBF Visitor: “We create the reality of our decisions by making them. And until we make them, they don't exist…There simply isn't anything to know until we make it there to know. So God can't foreknow the good or bad decisions of the people He creates until He creates these people and they in turn create their decisions.” We must reject this unscriptural teaching.

N.C.C. NAMES A QUAKER TO ECUMENICAL POST—The National Council of Churches has named a Quaker and a former official of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops to head up theological work for ecumenical discussions. This comes at a critical time when the NCC attempts to reinvent itself to attract participation of Catholics, Evangelicals and Pentecostals (8/02 The Servant). Leaders plan a meeting to discuss the future with non-NCC member churches, including Catholics, Salvation Army and the Church of God in Christ.

st Annual Meeting of the American Council of Christian Churches is scheduled for Oct. 22-24 at Monett, Mo. The executive committee meets Oct. 21. Host pastor is Rev. Kevin Hilton. Conference theme: “Is There Not a Cause? Speakers include: John Vaughn, Stephen Jones, Jim Fields, Mark Franklin, Howard Carlson, and Kevin Colas. ACCC Exec. Secretary Ralph Colas and ACCC President John McKnight will lead panel discussions. Russ Carnagey and Ron Fieker will lead in Devotional and Prayer times. Get a Program from ACCC, POB 5455, Bethlehem, PA 18015. E-mail: accc@juno.com

FFBC RESOLUTIONS—The Fellowship of Fundamental Bible Churches adopted good resolutions on the following topics at its Annual meeting at Tri-State Bible Camp & Conference Center in Montague, NJ on Aug. 12-16: (1) Sept. 11, 2001 Terrorist Attacks (2) Islam (3) Reaffirmation of Fundamentalism (4) The Roman Catholic Church in Crisis (5) The Heresy of Harold Camping [Family Radio founder].

ANN LANDERS GAVE GOOD & BAD ADVICE—Ann Landers died June 23 in her Chicago home. Her advice was a mixture of good and bad. She excused homosexuality and did not oppose abortion (7/1 Chr. News). She was a witty relativist who once referred a reader to a Unitarian clergyman.

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