Archive for September 12th, 2007

Apparently its only bad manners to call someone a false prophet and infer that they’re in hell if you happened to largely agree with the target of said invectives.

It’d be nice if the author of that piece could give us his thinking on when its “despicable” to apply those terms to individuals, but sadly, the author has decided to avoid any type of scrutiny by remaining anonymous.

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Why just Warren? Why can some just question Rick Warren and all the usual suspects when he is accused of watering down or at least downplaying the spiritual in favor of the pragmatic? I will confess to having some legitimate concerns in that area myself. But since doctrine is so important in some circles that it generates some to even question people like Rick Warren’s salvation, why is it not also appropriate to ask some questions about the doctrine of some of the so called doctrinal “watchmen”?

If the emergent movement, the purpose driven teaching, and the seeker friendly churches can be asked about expanding a man made grace, why can they not turn around and ask about a works message of salvation that was obviously addressed by the Apostle Paul and is espoused openly by some bloggers?

On a blog called Extreme Theology, Chris Rosebrough, who contributes for CRN and the late Slice of Laodicea, openly teaches that baptism saves and communion is the actual flesh and blood of Jesus. Now if he called himself “emergent” he would be castigated as a Rome-loving evangelical for these views, but for some reason his “extreme theology” is overlooked by his watchman friends.

If we can bring shallow theology to the discussion table, we also have a right to bring this works-centered theology into the light of Biblical inspection. Teaching that baptism saves and washes away sins is a Roman Catholic teaching that transfers redemption from the Blood of Jesus to earthly water. It is a serious departure from Biblical orthodoxy. And teaching transubstantiation (or a form thereof) is just as serious. And why do so many people get scathed over their “shallow” doctrine and men like this don’t get a second look?

This post is called “Baptism Saves”.

This post is called “Just Bread and Wine”.

Why does this get a wink, because his name is not Warren?

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Does anyone else find it odd that 16 out of 25 posts at Christian Research Network right now are written by the “editor”?  If discernment is from God, then I wonder why he would like to remain anonymous 64% of the time.  Just thought I would point that out.

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Yes, according to this post, God prefers slaves rather than people who are in love with Him.  That would come as a surprise to Jesus, I guess, who in John 15:15 said,

“I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.”

It also misses the point of much of the Biblical narrative.  It seems to me that even in the Old Testament, God was looking for people who loved them with all their hearts.  When David wrote,

As the deer pants for streams of water, 
 so my soul pants for you, O God.

My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. 
When can I go and meet with God?

was it sickening to God?  Too wishy-washy and touchy-feely?

I have been reading the The Return of the Prodigal Son by Henri Nouwen, which is more a personal testimony of Nouwen coming to an understanding of the Father’s deep love for us than a theological treatise.  I am struck again and again in that parable how God is portrayed as a Father who offers unconditional love to us, and is waiting for us to return with open arms.  If He truly wanted servants, it seems to me, He would have honored the son’s request to be made a servant.  Instead, though, the Father throws a huge party for the lost son that has returned.  How can we not be “in love” with a God like that?

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Hello all!

At the end of August, Chris invited me to come on as a contributor to the site.  Unfortunately at that time, our campus church was just starting up for the year, and the last three weeks or so have been a whirlwind.  I have tried to keep up with the posts here and other places, but I feel pretty much out of the loop as far as the blogosphere goes.  Not that that’s a bad thing.  It has been refreshing to interact with the young Christians who are part of the campus ministry, and it’s great to be doing “hands-on” ministry once again.

Some of you are probably wondering who the heck I even am, so I will give a brief intro. My name is Phil Miller, and I currently live in State College, PA with my wife Donna.  I guess you could say we are bi-vocational ministers (although I’m not in love with that term) at Penn State University (Go Lions!).  I work at a small engineering firm during the week, and my wife is just about done with her PhD work.

I do have a personal blog that has been sadly neglected, so I wait to put a link for that until I can dedicate some more time to it.  I’m glad to be back, and I want to thank Chris for the opportunity to share some of my thoughts here.

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Its finally here, the very first podcast. Justice and Mercy #1.

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Download it here

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icon for podpress  Justice and Mercy #1: Play Now | Play in Popup | Download
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