(the question is, “Faith in what?”) *

About a week ago, Jerry noted SoL’s praise of this Joseph Farah article regarding Rick Warren’s acceptance of an invitation to pray at president-elect Obama’s inauguration. Jerry’s post was primarily regarding the SoL article; mine is primarily regarding Farah’s article.

I won’t bother addressing the infantile (and self-defeating) nature of citing Obama’s middle name (been there, done that), nor will I do anything more than note Farah’s snarkiness via the overuse of quotation marks.  Suffice it to say that his style stinks (and not just because he makes the silly Hitler reference); I’m more interested in the substance.

OK, one small sidenote that isn’t that substantive. At one point, Farah refers to Rick Warren as “a brother in the Lord”. Given the fact that — in the days when SoL allowed moderated comments — several commenters definitively stated that Warren was not a Christian, and were never chastised for such blasphemy, it’s somewhat surprising that Ingrid would praise such an article.

Let me state, up front, that I agree with Farah that Obama’s policies regarding abortion are evil.  I state this based on his record and his actions, not the drivel that his pro-life supporters fell for.  It is Farah’s belief of what actions should be taken in response to these policies (and the twisting of Scripture to “support” his attitude) that I have a problem with.

Farah admits that “we are commanded to pray for our leaders” (how generous of him).  But he immediately follows this by stating:

But there is no suggestion in the Bible that we are ever to be used as political pawns by praying at their events – especially when they are promoting the wholesale slaughter of innocent human beings.

I have three problems with this statement.

1. Even as Captain Cynicism, I find this statement incredibly cynical.  Granted, being immersed in the muck of politics would garner cynicism in Will Rogers.  But when that cynicism starts bleeding over into your faith, there’s a problem.

2. Somewhat related to that, Farah shows a very limited and pathetic view of prayer.  Even if the motives of Obama (or whoever on his staff invited Warren) are 100% impure, and they simply want to use Warren, this is prayer we are talking about.  Ya know, communication with God.  What kind of wuss does Farah think God is, that Obama’s motives trump that?

3. I will give Farah this much — there’s not a “suggestion” in Scripture — there’s an outright command from Jesus Himself.  In Matthew 5:41, Jesus tells us:

And whoever compels you to go one mile, go with him two.

The background on what Jesus refers to here is pretty straight-forward.  In Jesus’ day, a Roman soldier could legally compel any Jew to walk with him for a mile and carry the soldier’s pack (or whatever other burden the soldier had).  Jesus said that if such a fate befell one of His listeners, he should walk a mile more than he was legally obligated to go.

So let’s break this down.  A representative of the government forces you to do something that benefits you in no way and benefits him immensely, and Jesus commands you to go even further.  But if a representative of the government asks you to do something that you ought to be doing anyway, and he is doing so to garner benefit for himself, then Farah commands you not to do it.

Farah closes his article by saying:

It’s time for Rick Warren to decide whether he stands with the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob or if he stands with the world and his “friend,” Barack Hussein Obama.

I would say that it’s time for Warren (and everyone else) to decide whether he stands with Jesus or with Joseph Farah.

Me, I’m going with Jesus on this one.

* I was going to title this “Sola Scriptura, my ass”, but I didn’t want to have to pay Jerry the royalties.

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This entry was posted on Tuesday, December 30th, 2008 at 6:21 pm and is filed under Church and Society, Ingrid, Misuse of Scripture, Politics, Slice Commenters. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.
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320 Comments(+Add)

1   Kevin I    http://ominousknife.com
December 30th, 2008 at 7:17 pm

I also love that all this hubub is pre-prayer anyway. It’s not like Rick Warren did this already and the prayer itself was condoning any sort of pro-abortion stance or agenda.

If we could only pray for the people who’s actions we condone 100%, we wouldn’t be able to pray for anyone.

2   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 30th, 2008 at 7:26 pm

A good first step. Any taking political sides is compromise. Our calling as believers is to lift up Jesus Christ and His gospel, and political involvement, pro or con, severely diminishes that calling.

I do not believe God blesses or curses, or for that matter gets involved in a country’s government. This “Inauguration prayer” is ceremonial idolatry and mixes the sacred with the profane. God is seeking the souls of the sinners present and watching by television, but to pray over a nation gives the impression that if you are an American God blesses you.

America could outlaw abortion, pass a constitutional amendment confirming Biblical marriage, and make all forms of pornography illegal and still God only deals with the church, a believer, and seeking the salvation of individual sinners.

God abhors politics from all perspectives, including those whose main thrust in life for the next several years will be to stone President Obama in the finest tradition of Christian compassion. I will never understand how Calvinists can blame a dead sinner for supporting abortion when God Himself hasn’t seen fit to open their eyes. Oh well, it makes for profound “journalism”. We get it – Obama supports abortion and George Bush did not offer one bill to congress to outlaw it.

James says something about actionless words…

3   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 30th, 2008 at 7:32 pm

I do find the add infested blog to be amusing, especially his plan to”take back America”. Yea, let us return tothe days of Godly men like Franklin, Jefferson, and all the slave/concubine owners. And when someone endorses Ann Coulter they have completely ignored the Christian faith and are now worshiping at the altar of American conservatism, whatever that is.

Ann Coulter – the example of a “

4   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 30th, 2008 at 7:34 pm

I do find the add infested blog to be amusing, especially his plan to”take back America”. Yea, let us return tothe days of Godly men like Franklin, Jefferson, and all the slave/concubine owners. And when someone endorses Ann Coulter they have completely ignored the Christian faith and are now worshiping at the altar of American conservatism, whatever that is.

Ann Coulter – the example of a meek and

Ann Coulter – the example of a “

5   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 30th, 2008 at 7:34 pm

“meek and

6   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 30th, 2008 at 7:35 pm

Farah’s article was horrible at best. It is interesting that if we use their logic, then Esther in the bible was not a woman of faith as she hid her faith in most the story… and even participated in a “worldly” beauty pageant… and it wasn’t until she was picked as a queen… that she came out and professed her faith…

If we were to contrast that with RW who is out there bold faced preaching Jesus and is against abortion… yet is willing to stand and pray for our “God picked” ruler… RW is openly professing his faith and has done so for years.

So the logic itself is way lost on me that we are to hate RW and Obama… (OK I can see why some hate Obama but still not to prayer for your enemies is against the teachings of scripture) but then lets hate Esther and remove that book from the Bible… besides it is the only book in the Bible that does not mention God in it… so that would be another strike against it!

iggy

Actually Esther is a beautiful book that carries in it the Gospel if one looks for it.

7   Jerry    http://www.dangoldfinch.wordpress.com
December 30th, 2008 at 7:36 pm

Brendt,

I agree. I’m siding with Jesus on this one too. His article is pandering to his audience. Farah, for as much as he calls Warren a brother, has had a bee in his bonnet over Warren for a long while now.

Now, about those royalties…haha. That’s funny stuff.

jerry

8   Jerry    http://www.dangoldfinch.wordpress.com
December 30th, 2008 at 7:39 pm

Bottom line is that Scripture says to pray for our enemies, to pray for our leaders, to pray for all those in authority. I didn’t read anywhere in Scripture that the place we were to do that praying was specified.

Also, contra #2, I would suggest a serious re-reading of the book of Daniel where Daniel spent a great deal of time in ceremonial idolatry in the Babylonian Court of Nebudchadnezzar.

9   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 30th, 2008 at 7:39 pm

“meek and quiet spirit”

Sorry – computer demons. (Democrats)

10   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 30th, 2008 at 7:45 pm

Jerry to use Old Testament actions as a template for the New Testament church is very dangerous and selective. A narrative cannot be the foundation for doctrine, it must be taught or expounded upon in an epistle format.

Eighty priests kicked out the king of Judah even when he was sincerely offering incense to Jehovah. Is that our example? That narrative presents a principle that unfolds more clearly in the NT.

I believe Warren is sincere, and when Christian bloggers take political sides they do despite to the gospel. We can pray that someone may see Rick Warren, listen to him or read his book and get saved.

Everyone take a deep breath – God willbe busy elsewhere and not really listening to prayers in Washington that day. The entire thing reminds me of the marriage reception in Fiddler on the Roof.

“You can keep your diseased chickens!!”

11   Brendt Waters    http://www.csaproductions.com/blog/
December 30th, 2008 at 8:01 pm

I do find the ad-infested blog to be amusing

Agreed. There were a lot of other shots that I could’ve taken, but they weren’t quite as substantive. Given how detractors from this site like to jump all over a minor part and ignore the main point, I wasn’t interested in affording them any more opportunity than necessary.

I want to know what I should read if I disagree with Farah.

12   Brendt Waters    http://www.csaproductions.com/blog/
December 30th, 2008 at 8:01 pm

Well, ya know, other than the Bible.

13   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 30th, 2008 at 8:02 pm

I have no problem with Warren praying over the inauguration. It is only natural for him to do so.

Warren is the consumate religious politician. He polls non believers about what they want to see in a church. He is willing to join hands with people, regardless of religion, to do ‘good works’ around the world. In doing so, he has practiced syncretism, and has helped Jewish and Mormon groups with his purpose driven seeker sensitive philosophy.

So he is the perfect representative of all those ‘christians’ who voted for Obama despite the promise that he will sign FOCA into law as one of his first priorities. He is perfect for the one who promises to silence his critics through the equal time act. This is not to mention his own dicey background as a muslim and as a christian who would sit under Rev. Wright, supporting Rev. Wrights racist tirades against America. And the jury is still out about where Obama was actually born.

Rev. Warren is the perfect representative for the compromised institutionalized American church and american ‘cultural’ Christianity that allowed this president to be elected.

Yes, we will pray for Him, I will pray for him. I will support the office. I even believe Rick Warren is the perfect person to pray. I sure hope God still sheds his grace on America. We surely do not deserve it.

14   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 30th, 2008 at 8:09 pm

John – somehow your comments of approval usually get around to critical redundancy. Next time just say:

“Warren = No.”

We all will understand. :cool:

15   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 30th, 2008 at 8:23 pm

Rick Warren is also backpeddling big time over his video interview ‘comparing’ bestiality to gay marriage…

He is spending a lot of time cow-towing to the homosexual lobby….

Is he really more concerned of offending God, or offending humans?

16   Neil    
December 30th, 2008 at 8:35 pm

I promised not to engage Pastorboy’s comments if they were irrelevant to the post on which he was commenting. Since he only used this post as a springboard to yet another rant of mindless drivel choosing to ignore the issues brendt brought up, I will not address his comments. At such time as Pastorbot decides to address actual issues raised in the post – I will engage him.

17   nc    
December 30th, 2008 at 8:38 pm

it’s not “backpeddling”, it’s common sense.

they aren’t comparable.

and if they are then some of you high-minded, self-satisfied moralists better start saying heterosexual fornication is comparable to bestiality since all sexual sin would be “perversion”…

18   Neil    
December 30th, 2008 at 8:38 pm

I’d be interested in what his plan to take back America really is? As Rick asked, take it back to what? And isn’t “Farah” a rather foreign sounding name – using his own logic we should…

19   nc    
December 30th, 2008 at 8:39 pm

sometimes offending humans IS offensive to God

20   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 30th, 2008 at 8:41 pm

And Jesus said to the woman “Neither do I condemn you”.

Cow-towing to the promiscuous lobby. I have a Rick Warren Inauguration dart board. It promises to be a best seller in some quarters.

I am glad my every word doesn’t find its way to national exposer. In one week I would probably have to move to Australia and live next door to my friend Dave!

21   Neil    
December 30th, 2008 at 8:46 pm

What hypocricy, he calls on Warren as a brother in Christ, yet at the end of his post advertises a book the title of which implies Warren is purposfully deceiving the church.

While I disagree with Rick Frueh’s take on Christians and politics, this christo-nationalism that Farah seems comfortable with about as biblical as abortion.

I wonder if he would say that God has blessed the Bush administration?

22   Jerry    http://www.dangoldfinch.wordpress.com
December 30th, 2008 at 8:47 pm

Jerry to use Old Testament actions as a template for the New Testament church is very dangerous and selective. A narrative cannot be the foundation for doctrine, it must be taught or expounded upon in an epistle format.

Rick, what do you think the Church used as a format before the New Testament was written?

Who’s being selective and dangerous? Come on.

jerry

23   Neil    
December 30th, 2008 at 8:48 pm

So who prayed at Clinton’s inaugurations and was there an uproar then?

24   Neil    
December 30th, 2008 at 8:52 pm

Jerry to use Old Testament actions as a template for the New Testament church is very dangerous and selective. A narrative cannot be the foundation for doctrine, it must be taught or expounded upon in an epistle format.

It may, but only if it is accorded support in the New Testament… Does all you doctrine come strictly from the Epistles? And is so, does any of it come from the parts written to specific people – it could also be dangerous to derive doctrine from someone else’s mail.

That said, I think the Daniel narrative at least gives an example of working with a pagan government as an exile in residence… which is a pretty close parallel to how we “Should” see ourselves as Americans.

25   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 30th, 2008 at 8:52 pm

Neil, #13 is commenting on the OP

26   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 30th, 2008 at 8:52 pm

“Rick, what do you think the Church used as a format before the New Testament was written?”

The law, which was to be done away with. We now live in the Spirit in Jesus Christ. Jesus said the OT Scriptures spoke of Him.

Many of the cults pull things from the OT and use them to beat people with. I believe II Timothy chapter 2 deals with getting entangled with the affairs of this world, which obviously doesn’t mean grocery stores and secular work, but it must mean something.

I suggest politics. (It’s in the original language)

27   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 30th, 2008 at 8:55 pm

Neil – Daniel was a godly example of how believers should behave in the midst of the heathen. And God called them back to Jerusalem since the very reason the Jews were in Babylon was because of their SIN, not for moral input.

28   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 30th, 2008 at 8:56 pm

Neil, wasn’t it Billy Graham?

1989 Inaugural Invocation with Reverend Billy Graham with George Herbert Walker Bush:

Our Father and our God, Thou hast said, ‘Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord.’ We recognize on this historic occasion that we are a nation under God. This faith in God is our foundation and our heritage. Thou hast warned us in the Holy Scriptures, ‘If the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do?’ We confess that we are in danger of destroying some of those foundations, for at times our faith in Thee has faltered and we chosen to go our own way rather than the way that Thou wouldst have us go, both as individuals and as a nation. Forgive us, we pray, as we turn to Thee in repentance and faith. Restore us to Thyself and create within us a desire to follow Thy will for all our lives. As George Washington reminded us in his farewell address, morality and faith are the pillars of our society. May we never forget that….

And now we come to a new era in our history. In Thy sovereignty Thou hast permitted George Bush to lead us at this momentous hour of our history for the next four years. As he today places his hand upon the Bible and solemnly swears before Thee to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution, give him the wisdom, integrity and courage to help this become a nation that is gentle and kind. Protect him from physical danger, and in the lonely moments of decision grant him Thy wisdom to know what is morally right and an uncompromising courage to do it. Give him a cool head and a warm heart. Give him a compassion for those in physical, moral and spiritual need. 0 God, we consecrate today George Herbert Walker Bush to the presidency of these United States.

http://www.wheaton.edu/bgc/archives/inaugural03.htm

1993 Inaugural Invocation with Reverend Billy Graham for Bill Clinton and Al Gore:

Our God and our Father, we thank you for this historic occasion when we inaugurate our new President and Vice-President. We thank you for the moral and spiritual foundations which our forefathers gave us and which are rooted deeply in scripture. Those principles nourished and guided us as a nation in the past, but we cannot say that we are a righteous people. We’ve sinned against you. We’ve sown to the wind and are reaping the whirlwind of crime, drug abuse, racism, immorality, and social injustice. We need to repent of our sins and turn by faith to you.

And now, on this twentieth day of January, 1993, we commit to you President-elect Clinton and Vice-President-elect Gore, who you have permitted to take leadership at this critical time in our nation’s history. Help them always to see the office to which they’ve been elected as a sacred trust from you. We pray that you will bless their wives who will share so much of the responsibility and burdens. Make President-elect Clinton know that he is never really alone but that the eternal God can he his refuge and he can turn to you in every circumstance. Give him the wisdom you’ve promised to whose who ask and the strength that you alone can give. We thank you for his predecessor President Bush and the dedication he gave to this office. Bless him as he and Mrs. Bush continue their dedicated service to our country in other spheres. We commit this inaugural ceremony to you and ask that the memory of this event may always remind us to pray for our leaders. I pray this in the name of the one that’s called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, the Everlasting Father and the Prince of Peace. Amen.

http://www.wheaton.edu/bgc/archives/inaugural04.htm

1997 Inaugural Invocation with Reverend Billy Graham for Bill Clinton and Al Gore:

President Clinton, Mrs. Clinton, Vice President Gore, Mrs. Gore. I’m going to ask that we all bow our heads in prayer. Our Father and our God, we thank You today for the privilege of coming into Your presence on this historic and solemn occasion.

We thank You for Your gracious hand which has preserved us as a nation. We praise You for the peaceful continuity of government that this Inauguration represents.
We recall that the Bible says, “Except the Lord build the house, they labour in vain that build it” (Psalm 127: 1, KJV). You also said that to whom much has been given, much shall be required. We look gratefully to the past, and thank You that from the very foundations of America You granted our forefathers courage and wisdom, as they trusted in You. So we ask today that You would inspire us by their example; where there has been failure, forgive us; where there has been progress, confirm; where there has been success, give us humility; and teach us to follow Your instructions more closely as we enter the next century.

Give to all those to whom You have entrusted leadership today a desire to seek Your will and to do it. So today we ask Your blessing on President Clinton and his wife, Hillary, and their daughter, Chelsea; and upon Vice President Gore and his wife, Tipper, and their children.

Give to all our leaders the vision of what You desire America to become, and the wisdom to accomplish it, and the strength to cross the bridges into the 21st Century. We pray also for the members of the House and the Senate; for the Supreme Court; and for all who bear responsibility of leadership in this nation which is blessed with such ethnic diversity. We have not solved all the social problems of our time, such as drugs and racism. Technology and social engineering have not solved the basic problems of human greed, pride, intolerance, and selfishness. We need Your insight, we need Your compassion, we need Your strength.

As both President Clinton and Senator Dole urged us in the recent presidential campaign, may this be a time of coming together to help us deal with the problems we face. O Lord, help us to be reconciled first to you and secondly to each other. May Dr. Martin Luther King’s dream finally come true for all of us. Help us to learn our courtesy to our fellow countryman that comes from the One who taught us that “whatever you want me to do to you, do also to them.”

Remind us today that You have shown us what is good, and what You require of us: To do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with our God. We ask that as a people we may humble ourselves before You, and seek Your will for our lives and for this great nation. Help us in our nation to work as never before to strengthen our families, and to give our children hope and a moral foundation for the future. So may our desire be to serve You, and in so doing, serve one another. This we pray in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Perhaps Obama has chosen Rick Warren over Rob Bell as the ‘new’ Billy Graham….

29   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 30th, 2008 at 9:00 pm

Blah, blah, blah. If God was listening, He chose not to answer any of it, and that include the prayers of the ADMs.

Sin continues with a vengeance and even has an entertainment value to the masses. Free will in action, unless God is orchestrating the ripping out of the womb the unborn.

Nope, it’s us guys, us. The answer is the everlasting gospel of Jesus Christ, not the everlasting ballot box.

30   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 30th, 2008 at 9:03 pm

PB,

Nope you are just adding more idiocy that is not even addressed in Brendt’s piece… Your comment was just another nonsensical tirade that did not address points of the post here.

I agree with Niel… not going to go into that as with you even when you come to agree, you forget all you stated in agreement and return to la-la land… The land of George Noory and conspiracies…

But I will ask you… have you been visited by aliens lately or have you encountered Bigfoot? I wonder if you were abducted by aliens and had some weird experiment done on your thought processes… Maybe the Illuminati have gained control and the Rothschilds now running the right wing conservative Christians? I am sure you could tell us all about it! Hmmm maybe you have the Limbaugh infection… Personally I enjoy Denise Miller more.

iggy

31   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 30th, 2008 at 9:04 pm

PB,

So you agree with JM people that Billy Graham may not have been saved after all?

Is that your point?

iggy

32   Common Sense Christian    
December 30th, 2008 at 9:07 pm

Yup, political action will not save sinners from their sin, only the Gospel of Jesus Christ can.

33   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 30th, 2008 at 9:13 pm

No, Iggy, I was really just responding to Neil’s question in #23

34   Neil    
December 30th, 2008 at 9:15 pm

Yup, political action will not save sinners from their sin, only the Gospel of Jesus Christ can. -CSC

I agree, as I think we all would…

35   Neil    
December 30th, 2008 at 9:18 pm

Perhaps Obama has chosen Rick Warren over Rob Bell as the ‘new’ Billy Graham….

I don’t think there will be a “new” Billy Graham. Not that he was so great no one couple fill his shoes (after all, he as vilified by ADM’s before Al Gore invented the internet)… but Graham represents evangelism in a strictly modernist manner and that ship has sailed.

36   Neil    
December 30th, 2008 at 9:20 pm

Neil – Daniel was a godly example of how believers should behave in the midst of the heathen. And God called them back to Jerusalem since the very reason the Jews were in Babylon was because of their SIN, not for moral input.

Agreed. But he remained faithful as a member of a pagan kings court… as a believer in exile. There is an example there for us as exiles as well.

37   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 30th, 2008 at 9:49 pm

” There is an example there for us as exiles as well.”

Yes, there is. In every circumstance, even those beyond our control, we should act and behave as becometh a follower of Jesus Christ. You and I, Neil, will disagree as to God’s will concerning voluntary political participation, but if I am ever forced to serve the president, I will ask for God’s help to represent the Lord Jesus to the best of my ability.

Until then, I will do the same outside the confines of political activism. I wish Rick Warren Godspeed and pray earnestly God will use him for His glory. He continues to be shot at from all sides, unfortunately.

38   Neil    
December 30th, 2008 at 9:54 pm

Rick,

Understood,

Neil

39   john b    
December 30th, 2008 at 10:16 pm

He is willing to join hands with people, regardless of religion, to do ‘good works’ around the world.

So I am to assume if a neighbor needed help from the neighborhood you would do a religious litmus test first before turning your hand? Falwell was criticized in the same manner for starting the Moral Majority with Mormons and conservative Jews and other religions. Whether you agree with him or not he never went down that road nor did it ever result in a spiritual linkage. Jerry said if he’s drowning he will accept a life preserver from anyone and deal with religious differences after the fact.

In doing so, he has practiced syncretism, and has helped Jewish and Mormon groups with his purpose driven seeker sensitive philosophy.

PB, have you no shame? It has been shown time and time again that the Mormon thing was completely false, added to a story in the USAToday by a unknowing writer of the story…..by her own admission!

He is perfect for the one who promises to silence his critics through the equal time act.

I am a staunch Republican who named my daughter after Ronald Reagan but this claim is just absolutely false!

This is not to mention his own dicey background as a muslim

Again, FALSE. Conspiracy theorists are such an embarrassment to the conservative movement.

And the jury is still out about where Obama was actually born.

Not to most people but is that a reason that Warren should not pray at the inaugaration? If not, why bring it up….especially if “the jury is still out”?

I sure hope God still sheds his grace on America. We surely do not deserve it.

You stumbled into the truth there. None of us deserve anything from God! Our works are meaningless……abortion or not; gay or not, etc.

40   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 30th, 2008 at 10:30 pm

I am a staunch Republican who named my daughter after Ronald Reagan

I’m sure she will really appreciate that when she is 13 ;)

PB, have you no shame? It has been shown time and time again that the Mormon thing was completely false, added to a story in the USAToday by a unknowing writer of the story…..by her own admission!

Tell me please where this is published.

41   chris    
December 30th, 2008 at 11:10 pm

Tell me please where this is published.

It costs money to get the full article off USA Today so I’m not willing to do that for you but this is a start. The writers name is in the article and the retraction/clarification can be located by searching her name.

USATODAY

42   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 12:08 am

PB,

You made the accusation first so produce the facts to back it up… and not from one of your friends… I want legit first hand articles such as a USATODAY article or whoever stated this.

It is incumbent on you to back your accusations… otherwise and especially with your reputation here… it is all a bunch of Illuminati nonsense that the Rothschilds cooked up to baffle us with Bigfoot and confuse us with aliens…

Did you ever get that foreign metal object removed from the back of you neck? Oh and say hello to Alex Jones at your next Reptilians run the world convention I heard you are holding at your church… but then that could be a rumor… but it could be real! Who knows… and with you and your friend it really does not matter is Alex Jones is coming to your church to talk about how the USA actually used the reptilian race to bring down the World Trade Center…?

I mean if I used truth like you do… that must be true cuz I said it was or I read it on some website.

iggy

43   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 12:28 am

PB,

He is willing to join hands with people, regardless of religion, to do ‘good works’ around the world. In doing so, he has practiced syncretism, and has helped Jewish and Mormon groups with his purpose driven seeker sensitive philosophy.

Here is the article in question and I do not see that RW helped Jews or Mormons… can you show me where you have found this (mis)information you are spreading?

I mean do you really want to be shown outright that you are lying? Can you back you claim? Will you even try to?

And what do you think of Bob Dewaay backing away from taking a hard stand agaisnt RW and stating that doctrinally they are in agreement but they disagree as far as ministry philosophy?

And is a difference in ministry philosophy enough that one calls RW a heretic… I am asking as Bob Deeway is the right hand man of Ingrid on her talk show.

iggy

44   john b    
December 31st, 2008 at 12:44 am

PB……

Here is the run date and the author of the story:

Author: Cathy Lynn Grossman
Date: Jul 21, 2003

When I read it I knew it was not correct because I was on staff at Saddleback and knew Saddleback, or Purpose Driven, would not have done so, at least knowingly. I know they believe Mormonism is a cult. Saddleback is located in an area where there is a fair amount of Mormons and offers a class on how to witness to Mormons.

Back to the story….. said information was not a quote and in follow up correspondence with Richard Arbanes Ms. Grossman (quite possible Jewish) admitted and apologized that she did not realize that Mormons were considered outside of the Evangelical sphere and filled that in (and I think Seventh Day Adventists if I remember correctly) to round out the article. This information is reprinted in Arbane’s book “Rick Warren and The Purpose That Drives Him”

Further, I went to the guy at PD who was in charge of registration and confirmed with him that no Mormons were ever knowingly admitted to a PD conference. A public statement was also offered at the time.

This correction has been widely disseminated to the ODM’s but yet some continue to spout the lies and it trickles down to people such as you who spread this information mistakenly or otherwise. You know what the Bible say about the “tongue.”

As for my daughter, she is now 18 and still proud of her name…..Ashley Reagan. As am I.

45   Neil    
December 31st, 2008 at 2:19 am

Well, I guess if you are going to engage Pastorboy’s irrelevant rants – completely rebutting him with documentation is a good way to do it.

46   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 11:21 am

Rick Warren Counsels Jews on Recruiting Congregants
By Jennifer Riley
Christian Post Reporter
Mon, Dec. 17 2007 02:58 PM EST
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Megachurch pastor Rick Warren attended a large Reform Jewish gathering last week to share tips on how to build a community.

Warren – who saw his church expand from seven people meeting in his house to 22,000 people worshipping in an expansive treasure island-like campus – said the key to holding onto visitors is involving them in a small group.

“We believe congregations have to grow large and small at the same time,” Warren said Thursday, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune newspaper. “We don’t really feel like people are in the congregation until they’re in small groups.”

The “Purpose-Driven” pastor spoke to thousands of Jewish leaders Thursday night at the Union for Reform Judaism’s biennial convention in San Diego.

With the holiday season in mind, Warren urged clergy to take advantage of crowded events to publicize other programs so people can get involved in the community through smaller groups.

“There are some principles that apply regardless of our faith, if it’s Jewish or Christian,” he said at the convention.

One of his principles: “Just be nice to people. Smile.”

After Warren spoke a few minutes at the podium, he sat alongside two popular Southern California rabbis for a casual talk about strengthening congregational life.

Other advice given by Warren included looking at everything from an outsider’s viewpoint, such as simplifying worship terms, making strangers feel welcome, and encouraging interaction.

“The congregation that really loves people, you have to lock the doors to keep people out,” said Warren, whose Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, Calif., is scheduled to host 14 Christmas services this year with an estimated crowd of 45,000 people.

The biennial meeting of the largest Jewish denomination in North America began Dec. 12 and concluded on Sunday.

Other guests at the conference included the Rev. Jim Wallis of Sojourners and Dr. Ingrid Mattson, president of the Islamic Society of North America</em>.

This is on the Purpose Driven Site, and it is known that there are Purpose Driven Mormon Congregations; While Rick Warren has stated that Mormonism is not Christianity (as Stated above, thanks for the correction,#44, John B), they are willing to peddle their stuff to any congregation- including Muslim Jewish, and Mormon.

Purpose Driven is not a new denomination, and you don’t have to be part of any particular denomination to implement PD principles. There are Purpose Driven congregations in more than 200 different denominations and associations. Our desire is to work with denominations to strengthen their churches. Each church can maintain its own heritage and doctrinal convictions while cooperating with others on accomplishing the five purposes every church is called to do: worship, fellowship, discipleship, ministry, and evangelism.

HT-Rick Warren

And then there was the Larry King Interview:

KING: But that’s what the Mormons preach about.

WARREN: Really?

KING: They help each other. They have evangelicals. They send their…

WARREN: Send people out.

KING: …young people out around the world.

WARREN: Yes.

KING: And they preach the gospel of Jesus Christ.

WARREN: Well, the Catholics, of course, have been doing it for 2,000 years and the Protestants have been doing it for 500.

There are few things as grievous as hearing a pastor describe the greatest problems facing humanity without coming anywhere near sin and the need for a savior. The closest he comes is “spiritual emptiness, people don’t know they have a purpose.” Who is the only one to mention the Gospel of Jesus Christ? Why, it’s Larry King, praising the Mormons. What is Warren’s response? Well, we (the Catholics and Protestants) do that, too! Is there any difference between Mormons, Catholics, and Protestants? Not that we’re going to hear about.

HT Thirsty Theologian

Apparently, Warren does not believe that the Mormons are Christians, and has not directly helped Mormon congregations with Purpose Driven. For that statement I am wrong. However, it does appear that there is no control over who and what association uses the PDC and the PDL, so the principles apparently ‘work’ for all religions, and that is sad.

47   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 11:28 am

Warren is very slippery sometimes but has never to my knowledge actually said Mormons, Jews, or all religions lead to God. His visiting a Jewish synogogue and giving church growth advice is very troubling and gives the appearance of salvidic pluralism.

48   Phil Miller    http://pmwords.blogspot.com
December 31st, 2008 at 11:43 am

However, it does appear that there is no control over who and what association uses the PDC and the PDL, so the principles apparently ‘work’ for all religions, and that is sad.

Why is that “sad”. Most of the things Warren teaches in PDL are pretty practical – as in don’t be jerks to visitors, make them feel welcome, don’t continue pouring money into programs that aren’t producing fruit, etc. It’s not rocket science.

If someone else picks up these principles, how does that make him at fault. There’s plenty of Christians who have authored books on finances, car repair, and other topics that have been used by non-believers. I don’t see why Warren is the target that he is.

Actually, I do know. He’s ticked off people who’ve sat in the same pew for 35 years, because he had the audacity to suggest that their beloved country church might need to make some changes in order to not die off. I mean, really, how dare he!

49   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 11:47 am

so the principles apparently ‘work’ for all religions, and that is sad.

Why is that sad? Isn’t Truth, no matter where it is found or who embraces it, still truth?

The principle of Jesus to “love your neighbor” is a pretty good one and works for all people in all religions. Do you think that is “sad”?

If I think it is a pretty good principle to not beat my wife and to love my kids and come to find out Mormons and Buddhists or whoever do the same should I find that “sad”?

Rather than find it “sad” I say rejoice. Rejoice that people all over the world are having their eyes opened to the truth of God.

50   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 11:48 am

Phil – stop reading my mind :)

51   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 11:49 am

Phil – it is not as simple as that. If Warren has directly advised Mormons or Jews, even coming to their houses of worship (perhaps being paid), that is different than those people gleaning principles from his books/teachings secondhand.

52   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 11:52 am

Why, Rick?

53   Neil    
December 31st, 2008 at 11:53 am

Phil – it is not as simple as that. If Warren has directly advised Mormons or Jews, even coming to their houses of worship (perhaps being paid), that is different than those people gleaning principles from his books/teachings secondhand. -Rick

I agree. And this proves that he is human and makes mistakes. It does not give cause to assume everything he does is anti-Christ… as so many shallow-thinkers assume.

54   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 11:54 am

Chad – because if Warren does not believe Mormons or Jews teach the right way to eternal life, he is comlicit with their falsehoods. However if he believes all roads eventually will lead to redemption, then it is in concert with that belief.

You cannot have both.

55   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 11:55 am

I truly desire an opinion on this…

This is a message for my brothers and sisters who have fought so long and so hard for gay rights and liberty. We have spent a long time climbing up this mountain, looking at the impossible, changing a thousand year-old paradigm. We have asked for the right to love the human of our choice, and to be protected equally under the laws of this great country. The road at times has been so bloody, and so horrible, and so disheartening. From being blamed for 9/11 and Katrina, to hateful crimes committed against us, we are battle weary. We watched as our nation took a step in the right direction, against all odds and elected Barack Obama as our next leader. Then we were jerked back into the last century as we watched our rights taken away by prop 8 in California. Still sore and angry we felt another slap in the face as the man we helped get elected seemingly invited a gay-hater to address the world at his inauguration.

I hadn’t heard of Pastor Rick Warren before all of this. When I heard the news, in its neat little sound bite form that we are so accustomed to, it painted the picture for me. This Pastor Rick must surely be one hate spouting, money grabbing, bad hair televangelist like all the others. He probably has his own gay little secret bathroom stall somewhere, you know. One more hater working up his congregation to hate the gays, comparing us to pedophiles and those who commit incest, blah blah blah. Same ‘ole thing. Would I be boycotting the inauguration? Would we be marching again?

Well, I have to tell you my friends, the universe has a sense of humor and indeed works in mysterious ways. As I was winding down the promotion for my Christmas album I had one more stop last night. I’d agreed to play a song I’d written with my friend Salman Ahmed, a Sufi Muslim from Pakistan. The song is called “Ring The Bells,” and it’s a call for peace and unity in our world. We were going to perform our song for the Muslim Public Affairs Council, a group of Muslim Americans that tries to raise awareness in this country, and the world, about the majority of good, loving, Muslims. I was honored, considering some in the Muslim religion consider singing to be against God, while other Muslim countries have harsh penalties, even death for homosexuals. I felt it was a very brave gesture for them to make. I received a call the day before to inform me of the keynote speaker that night… Pastor Rick Warren. I was stunned. My fight or flight instinct took over, should I cancel? Then a calm voice inside me said, “Are you really about peace or not?”

I told my manager to reach out to Pastor Warren and say “In the spirit of unity I would like to talk to him.” They gave him my phone number. On the day of the conference I received a call from Pastor Rick, and before I could say anything, he told me what a fan he was. He had most of my albums from the very first one. What? This didn’t sound like a gay hater, much less a preacher. He explained in very thoughtful words that as a Christian he believed in equal rights for everyone. He believed every loving relationship should have equal protection. He struggled with proposition 8 because he didn’t want to see marriage redefined as anything other than between a man and a woman. He said he regretted his choice of words in his video message to his congregation about proposition 8 when he mentioned pedophiles and those who commit incest. He said that in no way, is that how he thought about gays. He invited me to his church, I invited him to my home to meet my wife and kids. He told me of his wife’s struggle with breast cancer just a year before mine.

When we met later that night, he entered the room with open arms and an open heart. We agreed to build bridges to the future.

Brothers and sisters the choice is ours now. We have the world’s attention. We have the capability to create change, awesome change in this world, but before we change minds we must change hearts. Sure, there are plenty of hateful people who will always hold on to their bigotry like a child to a blanket. But there are also good people out there, Christian and otherwise that are beginning to listen. They don’t hate us, they fear change. Maybe in our anger, as we consider marches and boycotts, perhaps we can consider stretching out our hands. Maybe instead of marching on his church, we can show up en mass and volunteer for one of the many organizations affiliated with his church that work for HIV/AIDS causes all around the world.

Maybe if they get to know us, they wont fear us.

I know, call me a dreamer, but I feel a new era is upon us.

I will be attending the inauguration with my family, and with hope in my heart. I know we are headed in the direction of marriage equality and equal protection for all families.

Happy Holidays my friends and a Happy New Year to you.

Peace on earth, goodwill toward all men and women… and everyone in-between.

HT The Huffington Post

What is Rick Warren doing at the Muslim Public affairs council? Why is ‘Christmas’ music being performed there? I really am curious…what do you commenters think about this?

56   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 11:56 am

The point of the talk was “How to grow your congregation”… the Jew is not our enemy… they are our brothers and sisters… though they deny Jesus as Messiah, most do not deny Messiah….

The reformed Judaism is very liberal… and they are very synchronistic in their beliefs… Yet that does not mean RW is… in fact this might has seemed like a great opportunity to reach out and help Jews… and then hope they would read his book and find Jesus… Remember that is the end Purpose… to love and worship Jesus…

So if they are interested in RW to learn how to grow a large congregation, and they do read his books.. what if some get saved? Maybe God was/is working in the background and some do get saved… would that be bad?

It seems that there is only this hideous rumor mill about RW and you take the hook and worm without question…

It could have been a time of bad judgement on RW point or it could have been God doing something… and you are not one to judge another man’s servant, let alone another servant of God.

iggy

57   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:01 pm

Rick,
I have not read this entire thread. I am assuming from the comments that the beef is with Warren fraternizing with Mormons and Jews, yes?

My question is still the same: So what?

First of all, the Jews and Mormons are not the same thing. I have no problem whatsoever about Jews. Christians are subject to their story, not the other way around (and yes, I meant that).

As for the Mormons (or anyone else in that category) what should Warren do if invited to be with them?

You seem to leave only 2 options:
1- No thanks.
2 – Sure, but let me tell you now that if given the chance I will tell your church why I think they are wrong and I am right. Still want me to come?

Am I missing something?

58   john b    
December 31st, 2008 at 12:05 pm

Rick Frueh Says:
December 31st, 2008 at 11:49 am

Phil – it is not as simple as that. If Warren has directly advised Mormons or Jews, even coming to their houses of worship (perhaps being paid), that is different than those people gleaning principles from his books/teachings secondhand.

I too did not like Warren speaking at the Jewish synagogue. I think it was a mistake. I only offer as an excuse of any kind that a rabbi who was present wrote that although Warren did not pray in the name of Jesus there was no denying Whom he was there to represent. I did have a couple of friends present that agreed. I still think it was a mistake.

As for the Mormon thing. It has not and would not happen. I do know that at the 6pm Saturday night service there were about 6 Mormon guys that came TO Saddleback Church and sat up near the front for several weeks. May God have planted a seed in them that will bear fruit…….of salvation.

The PD site is talking about “the church”. Is there anyone here who thinks Mormons are part of “the church”?

From Saddleback’s website:

http://www.saddlebackfamily.com/maturity/smallgroup.asp?id=5789

I Have a Friend Who Is…Mormon. Understanding Mormons Small Group Bible Study

Taught by Scott McKinney and Ken Mulholland.

Three Weeks

Whether you have a neighbor who is Mormon or are interested in learning more about the Mormon faith, this three-week study is for you! This study addresses such questions as:

How do you respond when a Mormon tells you he or she is a Christian? What are Mormons saying when they talk about the ?one true church?? What?s the best way to share your Christian beliefs with Mormon friends?

This study is the first in a series of studies designed to assist all of us in understanding and sharing with those around us who have different beliefs.

Both Scott and Ken have a great heart for reaching out to Mormons. You will appreciate their unique insights. In this three-week study your small group will have an opportunity to further understand Mormon culture, the theology of the Mormon faith, and how to witness to Mormons.

59   Neil    
December 31st, 2008 at 12:06 pm

What is Rick Warren doing at the Muslim Public affairs council? Why is ‘Christmas’ music being performed there? I really am curious…what do you commenters think about this? – PB (#55)

Adventures is missing the point: Not all Muslims are radicals, in fact (like a lot of “Christians”) there are lots and lots of cultural-Muslims… I assume any Muslim Council playing Christmas music was this kind of council. But Warren being there is tangential to the real point – which you seemed to miss in you eagerness to find another pin for you to drive into your caricature.

60   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:06 pm

Interfaith ‘cooperation’ at Saddleback

Jim Brown – OneNewsNow – 7/25/2008 7:40:00 AM

California mega-church pastor Rick Warren says Christians should not be reticent to work with Mormons, Muslims, Buddhists, and even atheists to cure societal problems.

In conjunction with the presidential forum he is hosting next month at Saddleback Church, Pastor Rick Warren will convene an interfaith meeting for 30 Christian, Jewish and Muslim leaders “to discuss cooperation for the common good of all Americans.”

Warren’s global P.E.A.C.E. plan is an effort to mobilize churches around the world to combat what he calls the five “global giants” of spiritual emptiness, corrupt leadership, poverty, disease and illiteracy. But he says he has no desire for interfaith dialogue; rather he is interested in interfaith cooperation “on things that involve all humans regardless of what we believe.”

“When Jesus sent his disciples out [Matthew10]…he said, ‘When you go into a village, you find the man of peace,’ and he said, ‘If he accepts, and he’s open, and he’s receptive and he’s willing to work with you, you start your ministry there,’” says Warren. “[But Jesus] said, ‘If you don’t find the man of peace, you dust the dust off your shoes and you go to the next village [be]cause you can always find someone that’s willing to work with you,” he continues.

Warren notes he was recently part of a group at Georgetown University that brought together three leading Catholic priests, three Muslim imams, three Jewish rabbis, and three evangelical pastors to discuss what they could do together to stop AIDS.

I thought Rick did not work with Mormons? Now he does? Was the USA Today article right or wrong?

Am I still wrong? Was my apology Warren-ted? LOL!

Look, I work with all of the above groups. But when I am working with them, my work is to proclaim the Gospel to them, not work hand in hand with them as though somehow the great God I serve cannot help me feed, clothe, and cure the people of the world without the help of those in false religions!

61   Neil    
December 31st, 2008 at 12:08 pm

I truly desire an opinion on this… – PB

It sounds like Warren did a wonderful thing. He held his ground on his opposition to Prop 8, which he bases in his belief that homosexuality is a sin and that marriage should be heterosexual, yet he did so in a manner that showed love and concern not hatred and repulsion.

Sounds very Christ-like…

62   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:08 pm

The thing to consider is that Warren’s books are basically a franchise (almost like “Chicken Soup for the Soul”).

Depending on your persuasion, it can be morphed into whatever you like. Why? Because, just like the 7 Habits Book, which has a lot of practical, good things to offer, it is built on certain principles of morality, business and quotes from the Bible. Basically, it is a business manual
in my view.

My question is still the same: So what?

Fraternizing might not be the accurate term. If you are teaching them to spread false teachings and how to grow, then don’t you see that as wrong?

If you believe in Jesus Christ being the way to salvation and then you equip other groups who don’t quite see it the same way to actually win converts, do you not see a conflict of interest?

Then again – when you believe everyone will be saved in the end irregardless of their beliefs, then it becomes a moot point, doesn’t it.

63   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:10 pm

But when I am working with them, my work is to proclaim the Gospel to them, not work hand in hand with them as though somehow the great God I serve cannot help me feed, clothe, and cure the people of the world without the help of those in false religions!

I think this sums up beautifully everything I find wrong with your worldview, PB, and what I find to be the biggest sin of the Church of Jesus Christ today.

64   Phil Miller    http://pmwords.blogspot.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:13 pm

Look, I work with all of the above groups. But when I am working with them, my work is to proclaim the Gospel to them, not work hand in hand with them as though somehow the great God I serve cannot help me feed, clothe, and cure the people of the world without the help of those in false religions!

I think you might need brush up on what all the Gospel entails…

I saw this quote by Ghandi once, and I have to believe it’s true:

There are people in the world so hungry, that God cannot appear to them except in the form of bread.

65   Neil    
December 31st, 2008 at 12:14 pm

Look, I work with all of the above groups. But when I am working with them, my work is to proclaim the Gospel to them, not work hand in hand with them as though somehow the great God I serve cannot help me feed, clothe, and cure the people of the world without the help of those in false religions! – PB

“as though…” – ? Your arrogance knows no bounds! You take a statement that says we should work with others to addresses tangible issues on need and twist it into something that denies his reliance on God? Please!

Take a lesson from Rick Frueh – he probably would disagree with this statement by Warren. But he also would not insert his own meaning into the motivations.

Once again, you cannot just disagree, you must create a caricature, you must insert your own assumptions and meanings.

66   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:14 pm

The working with heretics to “cure” social ills is another issue which not only points to obscuring the message but the lethargy of the true church.

But going into a false house of worship and instruct them as to how to attract members to their falsehood is an obvious conflict of interest and disobedience to the gospel. I strongly objcet to humanitarian and/spiritual cooperation with false religions unless there are no other options (the house down the street is on fire etc.).

67   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:14 pm

Fraternizing might not be the accurate term. If you are teaching them to spread false teachings and how to grow, then don’t you see that as wrong?

If you believe in Jesus Christ being the way to salvation and then you equip other groups who don’t quite see it the same way to actually win converts, do you not see a conflict of interest?

Then again – when you believe everyone will be saved in the end irregardless of their beliefs, then it becomes a moot point, doesn’t it.

I call it loving my neighbor, Paul C.

I guess when you believe you have the ability to determine who is and who is not your neighbor you can live nice and cozy lives isolated from the people who need to see Jesus most.

This reminds me of something I asked on the thread about homosexuality. If a Mormon or Jew is reading this now who are they more prone to want to be around? Warren and myself or you guys who are so quick to find what is wrong about everyone different from you?

While you guys spend all your time figuring out who is in hell there are some people who think it better to actually have dinner with the ones you have damned.

68   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 12:18 pm

PB,

At the local mission they take volunteers… not all are
Christians that volunteer to feed those that come to eat… some are of other faiths and I would work right next to them without any issue… this is also a “christian” organisation and one of the largest outreaches in Montana… so are they guilty in your eyes as RW is?

iggy

69   Neil    
December 31st, 2008 at 12:18 pm

I truly wonder about the attitude of someone who would take two examples of “good” and twist them as an offering of what is “bad.”

Here we have two good things; addressing the tangible problem of society and building relationships with unbelievers. And Pastorboy has chosen to twist them both into something evil.

70   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:19 pm

I guess when you believe you have the ability to determine who is and who is not your neighbor you can live nice and cozy lives isolated from the people who need to see Jesus most.

Do you mean like the 16 yr old teenager we recently adopted who was a prostitute and has been living with us for a while and whom my wife is homeschooling?

Chad, you miss the point… actually TEACHING other groups on how to win converts to a false belief system. Of course, you see nothing wrong with that based on previous discussions. So I don’t expect you to take the blinders off on this issue either.

71   Neil    
December 31st, 2008 at 12:20 pm

At the local mission they take volunteers… not all are
Christians that volunteer to feed those that come to eat… some are of other faiths and I would work right next to them without any issue… – Iggy

The obviously, using Pastorboyan logic, you deny the power of God. REPENT!

And buy your milk from a Christian cow (HT Steve Taylor)

72   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 12:20 pm

Neil,

Agreed! How is helping feed the hungry or doing whatever else is needed to help others… Should Christians not have helped out with Katrina because Mormons helped out there also? According to PB’s logic that would be so… at least how things like this get all twisted in his mind.

iggy

73   Phil Miller    http://pmwords.blogspot.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:22 pm

While you guys spend all your time figuring out who is in hell there are some people who think it better to actually have dinner with the ones you have damned.

I hope you’re not referring to the writers here when you say that, Chad. I can’t speak for all the people who comment here, because, frankly, we don’t try to control who comments here, but none of the contributors have ever said who specifically will be where in the end.

That’s the one that was frustrating to me about the whole “universalism” discussion, which we have decided to declare a moratorium on for now. It seemed like both sides were engaging in mischaracterizations at some points, so let’s try to minimize that.

Not everyone who has spoken against universalism fits the description you gave there. I for one have had dinner with, hung out with all sorts of people. I’ve opened my home to them. I’d imagine other writers have as well.

74   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:23 pm

Feeding the poor, clothing the naked, visiting the prisoner, and housing the homeless are all in concert with the gospel. However, without the gospel you are “curing” nothing.

And in full disclosure, visit the average western Christian home, look at their cars, see their 401ks, their bank accounts, their refrigerators, their entertainment budget, and let taht speak to how intense we are to fulfill the things I just mentioned.

75   john b    
December 31st, 2008 at 12:24 pm

I thought Rick did not work with Mormons? Now he does? Was the USA Today article right or wrong?

Am I still wrong? Was my apology Warren-ted? LOL!

You are ever more wrong because now you are flat out dishonest. First you posit that Warren is helping the Mormon Church by teaching them how to spread their false doctrine. When shown your error, you flip to showing where Warren has called for various faiths to work together for practical physical needs, as opposed to religious purposes.

Of course you choose to ignore that Warren’s church clearly teaches that Mormon’s are not Christians. You choose to ignore that Warren has clearly said that in the past the “social gospel” didn’t rely enough on the Gospel and a whole host of other things as long as you can continue to bash and attack. Pharisaical McCarthyism at it’s best.

You have learned the ways of Silvan and Ingrid well.

76   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 12:26 pm

Paul C.

Do you mean like the 16 yr old teenager we recently adopted who was a prostitute and has been living with us for a while and whom my wife is homeschooling?

So you believe all that where prostitutes are not saved? What of the little girl sold by her parents to be a prostitute then sold to another person for $10 to pay off a gambling debt… she ended up in a dungeon like holding place to be sold again… she was 12 and had been sold at the age of 8… her daily prayer was, “God help me.” as she had become a believer in before this all started…

So again, when Chad stated:

I guess when you believe you have the ability to determine who is and who is not your neighbor you can live nice and cozy lives isolated from the people who need to see Jesus most.

I see it as true… if according to you all that are prostitutes are not saved… then this miracle of a little girl faith means nothing…

iggy

77   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:27 pm

Bless you and your new daughter, Paul.

78   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:28 pm

Phil, of course I was not referring to you.

People know whether that glove fits their hand or not.

Paul C- As I said, I have not read the entire thread. If the intent of Warren visiting the Mormon church was to help them learn better how to convert people to their faith than I would call that a mistake on his part.

It was not how I was seeing this, though. If all he was doing was sharing his PDL book with them, good for him.

79   Phil Miller    http://pmwords.blogspot.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:30 pm

Feeding the poor, clothing the naked, visiting the prisoner, and housing the homeless are all in concert with the gospel. However, without the gospel you are “curing” nothing.

I would submit that the things you listed aren’t just “in concert” with the Gospel, but they are part and parcel to it. If you are just telling people Jesus loves them, but not demonstrating it some way, then you aren’t really sharing the Gospel.

So if in our efforts to show people the love of Christ, other people join with us, I don’t really see a problem. Every good and perfect gift comes from the Father, so He could through people without them even knowing it.

80   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:31 pm

Feeding the poor, clothing the naked, visiting the prisoner, and housing the homeless are all in concert with the gospel. However, without the gospel you are “curing” nothing.

*sigh* Rick, we have been over this before and I doubt it is worth getting into again. But when you say feeding the hungry and visiting the prisoner is in concert with the gospel but not part of the gospel (such as when you say “without the gospel” all that is nothing) is to rape the gospel of its fullness.

81   Phil Miller    http://pmwords.blogspot.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:33 pm

Phil, of course I was not referring to you.

People know whether that glove fits their hand or not.

I suspected as much, but I would like to be a little more charitable than those who criticize us I suppose. I guess I would say one thing we try to do is realize is that those who disagree are not wrong in everything they do. That seems to be a concept that alludes many ADMS.

82   john b    
December 31st, 2008 at 12:36 pm

Paul C Says:
December 31st, 2008 at 12:19 pm

Chad, you miss the point… actually TEACHING other groups on how to win converts to a false belief system. Of course, you see nothing wrong with that based on previous discussions. So I don’t expect you to take the blinders off on this issue either.

The problem Paul is that you like PB fall for this crap that the ODM’s regurgitate that is simply and demonstrably not true. Perhaps you should read the entire thread.

83   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:36 pm

Thanks Rick. Please pray for us!

Iggy – what in the world are you talking about (Comment #76)? On second thought: please don’t answer that. I’ll just leave that comment alone…

Regarding Rick Warren, I know very little about him and have not set myself up to be his judge. As I said earlier, his books/strategy is basically a franchise like the “Chicken Soup for the _________ Soul.” (Fill in the blank with whatever: lonely, unemployed, single, married, etc…).

But, seeing that a main focus of the “Purpose Driven Church” is how to grow, then it follows that when you teach this concept to other groups, they are also being taught church-growth strategies. If “growth” is the end in itself then this would all be well-and-good. However, that’s not the case.

84   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:37 pm

“If you are just telling people Jesus loves them, but not demonstrating it some way, then you aren’t really sharing the Gospel.”

Like the thief on the cross? Or people who have made death bed confessions. Feeding the poor is not the gospel, it is a demonstration of God’s love that the Spirit uses to soften a sinner’s heart.

So when we cooperate with Mormons and feed the poor, and the Mormon stoops down and shares “his Jesus” with the person, what do we say?

“Don’t listen to him, we agree on food but not about Jesus.”

It is a confusing mess, and the western church doesn’t even need to cooperate with others, God has given us an ABUNDANCE to share with others. And it is not that as Phil said “other people join us”, it’s that some are cooperating with no message attached. that is “spiritually neutral” humanitarianism.

A Satanist can feed the poor as well. Let us not forget there is power in the gospel itself via the Holy Spirit of God.

85   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:40 pm

In 1975 I did not need food or clothing or a home or anything esle materially. I needed Jesus. Humanitarianism can reveal the love of God, but only the truth of Christ’s redemptive work upon the cross can save.

86   Neil    
December 31st, 2008 at 12:43 pm

We could get into a debate about the merits of helping people with physical/emotional needs and at what point should the spritual truths be interjected – yet…

What Pastorboy said was doing so along side those of other faiths is tantamount to denying God’s power to work through the church.

Which is, of course, wrong on two fronts – that of logic and that of assigning motivations.

87   Phil Miller    http://pmwords.blogspot.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:44 pm

Regarding Rick Warren, I know very little about him and have not set myself up to be his judge. As I said earlier, his books/strategy is basically a franchise like the “Chicken Soup for the _________ Soul.” (Fill in the blank with whatever: lonely, unemployed, single, married, etc…).

That has been something that’s irritated me with PDL. I hate the cheesy, marketing aspect of it. I think it’s largely a generational thing. I think people of Warren’s generation have this idea that if something isn’t slickly produced and well-packaged that the content inside must not be worth while. It’s like they think if someone didn’t take the effort to spruce it up, than it must not be very good.

I notice this with my parents. They will not even think about going into a restaurant that isn’t completely clean and shiny, the waiters and waitresses are all wearing matching uniforms that are spotless, and they know that there will be no surprises on the menu. So they end up going to a lot of chain restaurants like Olive Garden or Applebee’s.

To my wife and I though, it’s almost the exact opposite. We’re suspicious of marketing, and we hate the “sameness” of chain restaurants. We’ll go into a restaurant that looks a little risky if the menu looks interesting.

88   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:46 pm

Many pallets arrive in Africa filled with food goods. The outside of every package says this:

Given to you by God’s love through:

The Jehovah’s Witness
The Mormons
The Hindus
The Jews
The Scientologists
The Baptists

God Bless you all.

* That is OK with everyone?

89   john b    
December 31st, 2008 at 12:46 pm

Rick Frueh Says:
December 31st, 2008 at 12:40 pm

In 1975 I did not need food or clothing or a home or anything esle materially. I needed Jesus. Humanitarianism can reveal the love of God, but only the truth of Christ’s redemptive work upon the cross can save.

And THAT none of us can disagree with us.

90   Phil Miller    http://pmwords.blogspot.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:47 pm

In 1975 I did not need food or clothing or a home or anything esle materially. I needed Jesus. Humanitarianism can reveal the love of God, but only the truth of Christ’s redemptive work upon the cross can save.

Well, you were also an American at the time. I will grant that many Americans don’t necessarily need to be fed or clothed (although it’s probably more than we think), but they certainly do need to be shown the love of Christ.

I just don’t think there’s anything wrong if a non-believer joins in a charitable act. Heck, my wife became a Christian on a mission trip…

91   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:47 pm

Paul #83-

That is what I thought. Your accusations that Warren is, and you capitalized this to make your point:

actually TEACHING other groups on how to win converts to a false belief system

is false.

It is absurd to demonize him for sharing his message simply because you admit that it might actually work – that they might actually appropriate it and, God forbid, grow.

Guess what? Jesus is still Lord.

What if I told a Mormon they should love their neighbor and do unto others as they would have done to them? Would you charge me with aiding and abetting their cause because if they actually follow through with that they might look more attractive to potential converts?

Would you suggest Warren teach them how to have no purpose in their lives? That this is the way of Jesus Christ and not some other way that actually has practical value?

Sorry, it just sounds insane to me. It’s OK for Warren to fraternize with the unsaved so long as he doesn’t leave them with anything that will benefit them.

92   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:50 pm

In 1975 I did not need food or clothing or a home or anything esle materially. I needed Jesus.

Hey – that’s the year I was born. How old are you? :)

But seriously. I agree with you here Rick. Having worked as a missionary in Africa for some time, in one of the most remote and poorest regions of Kenya, the prevailing issue is spiritual.

That doesn’t mean you can’t meet other needs and that these needs might be a conduit for the gospel, but the end matter is spiritual and there is only one cure: Christ Jesus.

There is often a lot of condemnation of people who preach and don’t feed everyone who is hungry, but that is unfounded in my view. The gospel changes everything, even when circumstances don’t change right away.

As an aside, I remember when World Vision would come rambling into our village with a truck and some “missionary tourists” to drop off food. The villagers would plan ahead, get the worst cases up-front for the “tourists” to see, and then take the food. If men received the food (ie: 40 lbs of maize) it would be sold as soon as the truck left to buy a month’s supply of “pomba” – a local beer made from maize.

93   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 12:54 pm

Feeding the poor etc. is part of God’s calling to His church. But let us never forget that cults feed the poor, but what separates us the the everlasting gospel of Jesus Christ.

94   john b    
December 31st, 2008 at 12:57 pm

Neil Says:
December 31st, 2008 at 12:43 pm

We could get into a debate about the merits of helping people with physical/emotional needs and at what point should the spritual truths be interjected – yet…

I work for an organization called Open Doors with Brother Andrew. Brother Andrew is now a little 80 year old man who 50+ years ago started a ministry of smuggling Bibles into countries closed to the gospel. (Many became aware of him and Open Doors through a book called “God’s Smuggler”)

Anyways, I was with Brother Andrew a couple of years ago making a presentation to some potential donors to the ministry and showing a film presentation on some of the “hot spots” of Christian persecution around the world. At one of the tables after the presentation a lady said “even so Lord Jesus, come quickly.”

Brother Andrew looked at her politely and said, “Well, you could look at it that way or you could ask the Lord to tarry until more souls can come to Him.”

My point being that if people are dying without a chance to hear the gospel do we care who helps keep them alive until that may someday happen? Yes, it should be coming from Christians but the simple truth is, is it?

95   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 1:02 pm

“What if I told a Mormon they should love their neighbor and do unto others as they would have done to them? Would you charge me with aiding and abetting their cause because if they actually follow through with that they might look more attractive to potential converts?

Would you suggest Warren teach them how to have no purpose in their lives? That this is the way of Jesus Christ and not some other way that actually has practical value?”

Every once in a while some sentences reveal with clarity that I am on a different page completely and that discussion on a particular subject is without any value.

I see a red car, someone else sees the same car as green. I believe the problem is with the eyes, not the car.

96   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 1:08 pm

I see a red car, someone else sees the same car as green. I believe the problem is with the eyes, not the car.

You may be right. Thanks for at least stopping short of pronouncing whose eyes have the “problem.”

btw, I prefer green over red. :)

97   Neil    
December 31st, 2008 at 1:09 pm

john b.

Excellent comments.

…I was not trying to belittle the humanitarian efforts, I was bringing the discussion back the Pastorboy’s misuse of Warren’s words.

98   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 1:15 pm

In many ways we all have eye problems, however there should some cars that we all see as red.

99   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 1:17 pm

Agreed! How is helping feed the hungry or doing whatever else is needed to help others… Should Christians not have helped out with Katrina because Mormons helped out there also?

Not anywhere near what I said…talk about twisting words…

I have friends in ministry that offered the Gospel and food, blankets, medical aid, etc. in the Superdome, and later in Texas to the victims of Katrina. There was a complaint that those lending aid were spreading the Gospel. They wanted help- physical help- and would take it from anyone, but many complained about the Gospel.

I have other friends who went after the Tsunami to lend aid. The Christian groups were the first on the scene. Some of the local agencies said (in not so many words) we want your money, but not your Christ. My friends worked among the people and shared Christ at the peril of their lives.

If you can join hands with others to help physical needs at the expense of preaching the Gospel, I have a real problem with that. And I do not care what you think about that, because our purpose here on this earth is to proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ. We certainly should help with physical needs, but not at the expense of proclaiming the Gospel.

All too many times when you link arms with other religious groups (even mainline denominations) they want your money and your time, but not your Christ.
I believe that my God can provide for the needs of those I am called to reach- I do not need to link arms with those who want not to spread the Gospel, for My God can provide without human help.

100   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 1:19 pm

I do not need to link arms with those who want not to spread the Gospel

But Teacher, who is my neighbor?

101   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 1:21 pm

In many ways we all have eye problems, however there should some cars that we all see as red.

Maybe. But since we now see through a glass dimly perhaps we should be content that we can even see hues of purple at times.

102   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 1:25 pm

But Teacher, who is my neighbor?

Huge difference.

My neighbor is everybody in the world. They are breathing, they need the Gospel first and foremost.

I do not need to link arms with the JW’s and the Mormons to feed and clothe the poor. I need to go to all of them and share the Gospel, and, if they are in need, share the Gospel and help out where I can.

Sheesh- holy eisegesis Batman!

103   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 1:25 pm

“Maybe. But since we now see through a glass dimly perhaps we should be content that we can even see hues of purple at times.”

Every once in a while some sentences reveal with clarity…oh, never mind.

104   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 1:25 pm

Oh, Rick, as an aside: I am color blind. My wife has to dress me most days. Dress socks are a nightmare.

Anyways, I never pondered how my color blindness might have theological significance. Thanks for offering me a devotional moment.

105   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 1:29 pm

PB,

Really that is the essence of what you are saying… that if there is someone that is not of our faith we should not work with them to help those in need…

The program that RW is involved in works with all faiths… if you want to attack someone attack them… RW is involved in helping people get the help they need.

So as far as twisting your words… no need to… You have stated that this is wrong and a few of us here read your words and understand you to be saying just that.

To me this is another case of you back-peddling or having such a thin line that only those with the greatest of eyesight can even see the fainted distinction…

This is also nowhere close to how you twist things all the time… in fact I have come to believe that you cannot see good in anything unless it fits your own narrow view.

Now the road it narrow… yet on the way we are to love our neighbor be them of other faiths or not.

iggy

106   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 1:29 pm

I do not need to link arms with the JW’s and the Mormons to feed and clothe the poor.

Translation: I am better than they. I link arms only with those who see the world the same way I see it. I link arms with only those that are “in my club.”

I find you gospel to be incredibly exclusive and egocentric.

You seem to leave no room for the Holy Spirit to move and work. As if God needs you to draw the lines in the sand.

107   Phil Miller    http://pmwords.blogspot.com
December 31st, 2008 at 1:30 pm

There was a complaint that those lending aid were spreading the Gospel. They wanted help- physical help- and would take it from anyone, but many complained about the Gospel.

Well, if your friend was handing out tracts (which seems to be what you mostly mean when you say “spreading the Gospel”) while other people were working, I would have been irritated at him as well.

I don’t divide my life up anymore into times when I’m sharing the Gospel and times when I’m not. The fact is I should be spreading the Gospel in everything I do, and sometimes that can mean specifically talking about Scripture, but sometimes it can be just being a friend to someone who’s lonely. I am sick and tired of the dualist crap that gets piled on us. All it is an attempt to manipulate people into feeling guilty for not doing enough. It’s idiocy.

American Christianity and the demands that go with it has probably helped to destroy more marriages and families than people realize. God isn’t a taskmaster who’s going to judge us because we didn’t give a tract to the nerd that sat next to us in English. I’m sorry, but I reject your version of “spreading the Gospel”, PB…

108   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 1:32 pm

Amen, Phil.

Share the gospel at all times, and if necessary, use words.

109   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 1:32 pm

I eat more than I should, I waste more than I should, I have more clothes than I should, I spend more than I should, I have a larger house than I need, so even though I will not cooperate with cults in anything I am still a hypocrite. Mark it down and memorize that, I’ll let you know if anything changes.

I have no realistic expectation that it will.

110   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 1:35 pm

PB,

Also who is to say that those Christians are not out sharing their faith with Muslim and Mormons as they work with them… what an opportunity to work with one and get to share one’s faith at the same time… to even have the opportunity to share the difference in one’s motivation… As a believer I am compelled by the love of God and want to give Him the Glory… the Mormon or Muslim wants to prove to God they are good people who do good things… if one works with them on a project… especially humanitarian… and can share with them the Truth of the Gospel… they why is that wrong?

Again, you never did answer my question of the Mission here in Montana that allows Mormons or whoever to come and help out… in your mind is that mission wrong? I mean they are a Christian based organization and they allow those not of our faith to work along side those who are our faith..

iggy

111   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 1:41 pm

Well, if your friend was handing out tracts (which seems to be what you mostly mean when you say “spreading the Gospel”) while other people were working, I would have been irritated at him as well.

Earth to Phil- That was an INCREDIBLE Strawman. What I mean is proclamation of the good news…and that can be in handing tracts, Bibles, and verbal sharing. All of this can be done while working.

I don’t divide my life up anymore into times when I’m sharing the Gospel and times when I’m not.

Me neither….strawman…as if I do. Whether I eat or drink, or whatever I do I do for the glory of God and for His honor. That means proclaiming the Gospel verbally, by tracts, etc WHILE working, helping, etc.

The fact is I should be spreading the Gospel in everything I do, and sometimes that can mean specifically talking about Scripture, but sometimes it can be just being a friend to someone who’s lonely. I am sick and tired of the dualist crap that gets piled on us. All it is an attempt to manipulate people into feeling guilty for not doing enough.

If you feel that way, I am sorry. But it is what we are called to be. And you are right; spreading the Gospel is seen in all these things, but a verbal proclamation of the truth accompanying it makes it evangelism. Without it? Just good works any old person can do.

God isn’t a taskmaster who’s going to judge us because we didn’t give a tract to the nerd that sat next to us in English. I

Amen, but isn’t God’s gift of salvation so great that we want to? Doesn’t that ‘nerd’ deserve to hear the good news?

I weep for American ‘christianity’

112   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 1:43 pm

Phil,

I want to give an hearty AMEN!

Spreading the Gospel is not a “do” thing… it is a by-product of who we are… it is being who we are in Christ and sharing what He has done.

iggy

113   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 1:43 pm

#110

I did answer that.

I stated: If working with them means I cannot proclaim the Gospel I have a problem with that.

Working as you describe while sharing the Gospel? Ideal. I am all over that, and have done it with habitat for humanity and other charities.

114   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 1:44 pm

Amen, but isn’t God’s gift of salvation so great that we want to? Doesn’t that ‘nerd’ deserve to hear the good news?

He deserves a friend a loves without agenda. Not a tract that you have the audacity to call “Good News.”

I weep for American ‘christianity’

Ditto. For a completely different reason.

115   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 1:46 pm

I weep for American ‘christianity’

PB that is the main issue… there is no such thing as American christianity… there is only ONE FAITH, not the American one… and the European one…

I weep that there is an American Christianity as it is core to the anti-christian attitude many have towards othersand infects our churches in America… it is steeped in Nationalism mixed with Christian principles and dilutes the purity of the True Gospel.

iggy

116   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 1:51 pm

Yep- thats a good friend who sees a ‘nerd’ instead of a loved child of God who needs a Savior.

What tracts do you have Chad? Do they say ‘I love you, you love me, we are a happy family! Dont worry about what you believe, God will accept you in the end” Hogwash.

Iggy,
Which is why I didn’t capitalize. I should call it churchianity, because the true Church has no national tag. It is the cheap version that we have made it.

117   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 1:55 pm

What tracts do you have Chad? Do they say ‘I love you, you love me, we are a happy family! Dont worry about what you believe, God will accept you in the end” Hogwash.

Since I think tracts do more harm than good and are a convenient way of hiding rather than build intimacy I do not, nor have I ever, used one.

Tracts are for people who think the Christian life is about determining who I will and will not link arms with.

118   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 1:55 pm

PB,

Again you have not answered most the questions I have asked such as what you think of Bob Dewaay saying that doctrinally he has no problem with RW it is only in ministry philosophy he has problems with….

You seem to be saying that it is doctrinally differences… so how do you reconcile Bob Dewaay’s change of heart on his views of RW doctrines as he was one of RW biggest critics?

iggy

119   Phil Miller    http://pmwords.blogspot.com
December 31st, 2008 at 1:56 pm

Earth to Phil- That was an INCREDIBLE Strawman. What I mean is proclamation of the good news…and that can be in handing tracts, Bibles, and verbal sharing. All of this can be done while working.

I was just going from your videos and blog – it seems that you equate handing out tracts with “sharing the Gospel” in many of your posts.

As far as doing it while working – it depends. If someone is simply preaching while working, they most likely deserved to be punched in the jaw. If it’s a natural conversation, than so be it.

If you feel that way, I am sorry. But it is what we are called to be. And you are right; spreading the Gospel is seen in all these things, but a verbal proclamation of the truth accompanying it makes it evangelism. Without it? Just good works any old person can do.

I’d like to see to see all these people supposedly doing good work spontaneously. I think when you look at it, the number of Americans participating in charity is relatively small. We’re pretty selfish on a whole. If a person does do some good, it’s only because God created them with that capability.

Amen, but isn’t God’s gift of salvation so great that we want to? Doesn’t that ‘nerd’ deserve to hear the good news?

I weep for American ‘christianity’

The nerd needs to be shown love and seen as a person, not just a potential convert. So my experience with encouraging people to evangelize is that it’s only a short jump before people start treating their neighbors as conquests or potential church members rather than real people.

Evangelistic youth movements seem to send kids the message that you have to hold people as far away as possible but yet somehow be concerned that they’re sinners. In our desire to protect our kids from evil influences, we end up telling them to not dare befriend these people, but yet we somehow expect them to convert them. It’s lunacy.

So yes, I want to share the love of Christ with others, but I want to do it a way that honors God and doesn’t belittle anyone.

120   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 1:59 pm

PB,

So why weep for American christianity at all… why not just preach the True Gospel? Better why not live it? Then the idea of RW praying for Obama really does not matter…

BTW was Billy Graham wrong by ending prayers “In the Name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit” or “one that’s called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, the Everlasting Father and the Prince of Peace” instead of the “In Jesus Name”?

iggy

121   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:02 pm

So my experience with encouraging people to evangelize is that it’s only a short jump before people start treating their neighbors as conquests or potential church members rather than real people.

That is an excellent observation.

Such is the problem with modern methods of evangelism (including the tract method and street preaching).

And the heretic in me must add: When you have an insufficient view of Christ’s work on Calvary it is easy to lapse into a way of evangelizing that suggests we have to make good what God failed to do.

In our TV trained culture today people can spot a sales pitch a million miles away. No one wants your tracts or to hear your commercial on a street corner. They want to see what love looks like when you enter into the work of intimacy with a stranger without an agenda to change them but to simply love them as they are – a child of God, loved by God, whom Christ died for.

122   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 2:02 pm

PB,

You know how many tracts I have handed out over the years… hundreds of them… and you know how many people came back to me and said they were saved? none…. Most of the tracts ended up in the garbage or gutter…

Most the people who I can say I was a participant in their coming to faith came because I just loved on them and did not judge them… I just kept praying and talking to them about God and faith and their thoughts on that… and they looked into it more and found Jesus…

It is when we take the time to walk with a person our faith comes to life for that person.

iggy

123   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:10 pm

“And the heretic in me must add: When you have an insufficient view of Christ’s work on Calvary it is easy to lapse into a way of evangelizing that suggests we have to make good what God failed to do.”

Code for universalism. More open than slippery.

124   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:14 pm

It was the 19th century and a young Scottish lady was about to embark on a mission journey in India. Before leaving, her grandfather, who also raised her, took her on a walk. They ended up at a local quarry.

They paused near a large stone that was freshly broken in two.

The wise old man asked his granddaughter, “Which blow, do you suppose, broke the stone?”

She looked at the stone for a long time, trying to calculate which blow it could have been. Surely the first blow started the work, but the last blow seems like the obvious choice. Sensing a lesson in the making, she turned to her grandfather and said, “I cannot tell.”

He told her something she would carry with her for the rest of her life:

“It was the first blow, and the last – and every blow in between. You must never think, you must never let it enter your mind that you won this soul to Christ. The glory is the Lord’s and He is the one that saves.”

The woman was Amy Carmichael.

Just a story I thought I’d share as it’s something I’ve never forgotten either.

125   Neil    
December 31st, 2008 at 2:17 pm

I believe we have allowed for another rabbit trail. Pastorboy commented with two scenarios (#55 & #60) that he thinks indict Warren. Neither do, in and of themselves, unless you insert nefarious motives.

Discussing the merits of the strategy is one thing, but let’s not forget this is tangential to Pastorboy’s failure to show significant fault on the part of Warren.

126   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:18 pm

“And the heretic in me must add: When you have an insufficient view of Christ’s work on Calvary it is easy to lapse into a way of evangelizing that suggests we have to make good what God failed to do.”

If only the apostles had been thus enlightened!! All that nonsense about “hazarding their lives for Christ” could have been put off in favor of Mediterrenean cruising.

I especially got a grin out of the phrase: “insufficient view of Christ’s work on Calvary…”

I think I just saw another red car go by – or was it green?

127   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:18 pm

I have been thinking about how much evangelism reminds me of recruiting for Amway. In the mid 90’s I was an Amway distributor for about a year. One thing you learn quickly if you want to be successful is that you always have to be making “contacts.” You could count on a measure of success if you played the numbers: 20 contacts a day leading to 10 calls each day should get you, hopefully, 1-2 good appointments for the week. Do that everyday for 5 days a week and you come out with 5-10 appointments each week. Success.

Looking back I did not like how this changed me. I looked at everyone not as a human being but as a potential prospect – a contact. My conversations with them in bookstores or coffee shops or church or WalMart were laced with agenda – they were only a means to me to a point where I could make my pitch: “So, have you ever thought of owning your own business?” Or, “So, have you ever thought about accepting Jesus?”

No matter how much I wanted to put a good face on it, I had no time for anyone who said, “no thanks.” They became “losers” to me – people that didn’t like themselves enough to want to live the “American Dream” (HA! I was such a turd!). If someone told you “no” we had a motto: “NEXT!”

So yeah, PB, American ‘christianity’ is something to weep over. It looks a lot like Amway. We have, whether we care to admit it or not, adopted the same sort of ethos that MLM’s have adopted.

Wanna know Jesus? No? Next!

128   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:20 pm

Usually tracts are a form of watering not reaping. Christian books are large tracts, and preaching is a verbal tract. When an ADM looks down his nose at a method it is repulsive, when a more liberal believer does the same it is…well…acceptable.

I see them both as self righteous. I admire people who pass out tracts. Even Jesus said that people who do not do it the same way as was He are not to be discounted.

Self righteousness is not bound by denomination, doctrine, or evangelical camps. It is like water, it finds any and every door that is open to it.

129   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:20 pm

Again you have not answered most the questions I have asked such as what you think of Bob Dewaay saying that doctrinally he has no problem with RW it is only in ministry philosophy he has problems with….
You seem to be saying that it is doctrinally differences… so how do you reconcile Bob Dewaay’s change of heart on his views of RW doctrines as he was one of RW biggest critics?

What DeWaay said was: IF Rick Warren believes as he says he does there’d be no problem, but time will tell.

PB,
You know how many tracts I have handed out over the years… hundreds of them… and you know how many people came back to me and said they were saved? none…. Most of the tracts ended up in the garbage or gutter…

How can you possibly know that? In fact I have heard at least two testimonies of someone picking a tract up off the ground that someone else had thrown away….and they were saved! Maybe this was the result of one of your throw away tracts. Just because you can see results does not make the effort more effective.

Anyway, with evangelism, it is about obedience, not results.

130   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:21 pm

If only the apostles had been thus enlightened!! All that nonsense about “hazarding their lives for Christ” could have been put off in favor of Mediterrenean cruising.

I especially got a grin out of the phrase: “insufficient view of Christ’s work on Calvary…”

I think I just saw another red car go by – or was it green?

Code for universalism. More open than slippery.

blah, blah and yada, yada.

131   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:24 pm

blah, blah and yada, yada.

Chad – this is the best comment you’ve ever made on this entire blog. Well, at least it makes the most sense!! Excellent work.

132   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:24 pm

blah, blah and yada, yada.

Universalist code for: I see my worldview being destroyed for lack of knowledge and by scripture

Sorry Chad.

133   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:25 pm

picking a tract up off the ground that someone else had thrown away….and they were saved!

Translated from an eternity in hell to an eternity in heaven because they picked up a piece of trash, read it and said, “Ok, I believe that.”

How utterly fantastic for them.

How remarkably boring salvation is.

134   john b    
December 31st, 2008 at 2:26 pm

Ok, PB. So let’s talk about the region hit by the Tsunami. It happened on a Sunday morning based on US time. Five minutes after it happened a church there involved in the Purpose Driven network was on the phone with Rick Warren. That morning in church Saddleback took an offering of $1.2 million for the region to be dispursed by the CHRISTIAN church there.

But more importantly, it opened the door later for teams of trained Christian counselors to go there for extended periods of time to deal with individuals traumatized by the floods and to share the love and sufficiency of Christ.

But I think righteous love compels us to live the gospel….taking care of the orphans and the widows because it is our love for God, and as an extension, His commandments and His creation. That we are able to witness to others is testament of God’s provision to them.

135   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:28 pm

Paul C – thank you.
PB – no need to apologize.

136   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:29 pm

#134

Amen.

137   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 2:30 pm

Rick,

In no way am I saying passing out tracts is wrong… just not effective.

As Chad shared I had a similar experience with Amway… though I do not hold it with as much disdain as it sounds Chad does. I met some wonderful people who are doing great things for God through and in and with Amway…

Yet as Chad shared, I could not breach the gap of seeing people with an agenda… It kept me from taking time know anyone unless they accepted Amway…

It is the same in Churchianity today… We do not see people with needs that need love… we see someone we can “get to church” or fix them… or get them to hear the pastor/preacher/evangelist…

Sadly instead of giving ourselves we choose to walk past those who need the most. We see people as “prospects” who will move a “product” named Jesus…

To me it was freeing to realize that I could love others without an agenda… I still have good friends in Amway who cannot see why this is an issue with me… they still love me (as I am just a lovable guy) and I think as far as a business it is a very good one… just not for me anymore than other jobs out there… so I don’t judge my friends who are still doing Amway…

The idea of a tract is as Chad mentioned sort of like walking through the mall and having some pretty girl hand you a sample and then try to sell the the product for your special girl friend… I get turned off by that approach… and most people I know get annoyed by it… but on occasion I admit some sales people have success in doing it that way… me I walk by and say “no thank you” politely.

iggy

138   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:30 pm

How remarkably boring salvation is.

Then may I suggest that you and I do not share the same glorious salvation

139   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:34 pm

Then may I suggest that you and I do not share the same glorious salvation

No, you may not. Why? Because WE do not own or even set the parameters for this “glorious salvation.” Jesus Christ and he alone does.

The glory of salvation is an objective fact, reality, about you and I that goes beyond your reductionist tendencies.

You have made something remarkable and glorious into something completely subjective and…boring.

So you are free to think whatever you like.

140   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:34 pm

messed up the blockquote above.

141   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:37 pm

Translated from an eternity in hell to an eternity in heaven because they picked up a piece of trash, read it and said, “Ok, I believe that.”

Nice straw man, Chad

It is not a piece of trash, though it may be for you, for you hold the Gospel and the power thereof to save in contempt. They were not saved by a piece of trash. God gloriously ordered time and space for that individual to pick up that piece of trash and take the time to read it. You see someone picking up garbage. I see the love of God. They read it, and because of the Holy Spirit, they were convinced of their sin, of righteousness, and of judgement. And by the grace and mercy of God, and by the faith he provided, the repented and trusted or trusted and repented- it does not matter the order- it usually is simoutaneous…They believed on the Lord Jesus Christ and they were saved.

all because of a piece of trash?

If you would really like to think so. I prefer my explanation.

142   Phil Miller    http://pmwords.blogspot.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:37 pm

I think the Amway thing is a good observation. I went on two Spring Break trips with Campus Crusade for Christ when I was in school, and our “witnessing” consisted of approaching strangers with fake surveys to try to start a conversation. Occasionally one of these people would go through the Four Spiritual Laws tracts with us and be persuaded to say a prayer.

So we’d go back in the evening and have a service where we all shared our successes. Meanwhile, I doubt any of us could remember the names of anyone we talked to earlier in the day.

Now I have nothing against CCC, and have nothing but admiration for Bill Bright. Unfortunately, the tool he came up with that served a genuine purpose at one time had become something little more than a product. People forgot what they were actually doing.

So I guess I think that what has happened with Warren to some extent to. When someone is viewed as “successful” they are always vilified and copied. It’s sad, because it end up cheapening their work in some people’s eyes.

143   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:40 pm

Occasionally one of these people would go through the Four Spiritual Laws tracts with us and be persuaded to say a prayer.

Unfortunately many of those prayers (not all) created false converts, and that is a tragedy.

I pray by the grace of God that he can take even our weakest efforts and win some.

144   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:40 pm

PB- you are welcome to prefer your own explanation. That doesn’t surprise me in the least.

Again – how utterly fantastic for that person to pick up that trash.
And how remarkably boring you have made salvation out to be.

145   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:41 pm

thanks Phil, for fixing 139.

Interesting parallel on 142.

146   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:43 pm

God gloriously ordered time and space for that individual to pick up that piece of trash and take the time to read it. You see someone picking up garbage. I see the love of God.

Excellent couple sentences here. It really does highlight the different viewpoint and the true value of salvation.

That’s what I was getting at in Comment 124. It is God who is charting the path all along. We just might be a tool along the way.

And how remarkably boring you have made salvation out to be.

Still don’t understand this comment, especially in light of the above understanding.

147   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:44 pm

We just might be a tool

Best line of the day, Paul C! :)

148   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 2:54 pm

And how remarkably boring you have made salvation out to be. – Chad

Still don’t understand this comment, especially in light of the above understanding. Paul C

I think it is even more evident in light of the above understanding.

PB has reduced salvation to nothing more than a moment in time when a person reads something on a piece of paper and for the moment believes it – maybe even says a sort of sinner’s prayer. He has said of this person, “he was saved!”

This makes salvation (being saved) nothing more than a subjective reality. Salvation has little if nothing to do with what God has done and everything to do with how this person appropriates outside stimuli (in this case, a tract).

Salvation also takes time. We are to work out our salvation with fear and trembling. To say someone is “saved” just because they read a piece of trash is to turn salvation into nothing more than adopting a new philosophy about the world. Furthermore, it suggests that being “saved” is just a matter of being taken from the rosters of hell-bound to the rosters of heaven-bound.

Is God such a pansy that he is watching this person, wringing his hands, hoping all the events leading up to this moment have worked out just right so he/she will bend down, pick up a piece of garbage, read it and believe it so that THEN (and only then) God and the angels in heaven can rejoice for this person can now avoid the sure damnation he deserved for all eternity in hell – why? Because he read the right piece of trash.

Forgive me as I throw up a little bit in my mouth.

149   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 3:01 pm

Forgive me as I throw up a little bit in my mouth.

You should spit out that barth.

Maybe while you are doing so you can examine the mass that you got contemplating the lectio divina in a lotus.

PB has reduced salvation to nothing more than a moment in time when a person reads something on a piece of paper and for the moment believes it – maybe even says a sort of sinner’s prayer. He has said of this person, “he was saved!”

Strawman.

I do not get to declare salvation, nor do I believe salvation is only a moment of time. I have explained it as salvation past (justificaton, reconciliation) Present (sanctification) and future (glorification) But, like Paul C said, the finding of Iggy’s cast aside tract was a part of the whole process that ‘broke the rock’

Ruach.

150   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
December 31st, 2008 at 3:06 pm

Chad – you have become more cynical than those you castigate.

Salvation also takes time. We are to work out our salvation with fear and trembling.

Agree 100%

The issue is that God is intimately engaged with the affairs of His children, charting their path even before they know of Him. All of the experiences a person has been brought through until the day they repent and turn are part of God’s plan.

I personally know a pastor from Nigeria who, before becoming a Christian, was on a business trip to India. The meeting he had was cancelled and so he was walking around in Bombay. In a particular area he heard singing and worship, and out of curiosity went into a doorway from where the sound was coming.

Long story short. He stayed for the service. He accepted the Lord. Went back to Nigeria. Became a pastor. Now oversees 3 churches.

I see this as no different than a tract. I simply see it as the goodness of God leading a person in need to repentance.

To reiterate PB’s comment:

God gloriously ordered time and space for that individual to pick up that piece of trash and take the time to read it. You see someone picking up garbage. I see the love of God.

To me your view is very blind and sad.

151   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 3:09 pm

I have explained it as salvation past (justificaton, reconciliation) Present (sanctification) and future (glorification)

Sometimes you make sense, PB :)

So who is included in the salvation past?

You see, if you gave only this definition of salvation that I quote above you would be sounding a lot like me. Sadly, I know you will limit what has happened on Calvary with some mumbo-jumbo about foreknowledge and limited atonement or something.

You see, the difference between us is that for the person who picked up that tract and believed I would not say “they were saved!” (which is what you said) but rather that they discovered the truth about themselves. They discovered that they are saved and they don’t have to live this way anymore. I would say that they got swept up into the story that God has been writing all along. I would say they are now just beginning to know about themselves and the world what God has known all along.

152   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 3:12 pm

To me your view is very blind and sad.

Well, Paul, when you pass me on the streets you can hand me a tract. Consider me one of your projects.

153   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
December 31st, 2008 at 3:17 pm

Well, Paul, when you pass me on the streets you can hand me a tract.

Didn’t Jesus also mention something about casting pearls… never mind…

154   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 3:20 pm

God gloriously ordered time and space for that individual to pick up that piece of trash and take the time to read it.

Sorry, but I just can’t accept this as blanket truth. For you or anyone to make this claim causes more problems than it resolves for you.

If God “gloriously ordered time and space” so that this person could pick up a piece of paper necessary for him or her to read before God could save them than why doesn’t God “gloriously order time and space” for everyone? Why are these tracts not gloriously falling from heaven unto the tribal lands of this earth that never hear the name of Jesus? Why do millions die every day without ever having this “time and space” so ordered that they get to hear the good news, accept it, so they can avoid an eternity in hell? For everyone you claim God has ordered time and space just so they can read a tract to save them you damn countless others by the very same ordering of time and space by God. And God desires none should perish – yet he is lousy at bringing about his own desires.

155   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 3:25 pm

Didn’t Jesus also mention something about casting pearls… never mind…

Just like the Hitler principle, it is only a matter of time in any conversation with Paul or PB before they call you blind, faithless or a pig.

Paul, I never once question your salvation. I believe you love Jesus and desire to follow him with all your heart and mind.

However, let me let you in on a little secret: It is because I get to interact with a-holes like you on an almost daily basis that I have begun to embrace God’s universal salvation for all. If God can have a place reserved at the banquet table for guys like us than there is room for those who do not know Jesus but are far more gracious than those who do.

156   Jerry    http://www.dangoldfinch.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 3:26 pm

Chad,

The more of Willimon’s book I read, the more I’m convinced of the utter emptiness and destructive theological idea of limited atonement. I’ve never liked it, but Willimon is giving my suspicions teeth. I hope you won’t mind if I ask to be considered a project for others along with you.

jerry

157   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 3:26 pm

What is an a-hole?

Is that something that we should call a brother in Christ?

158   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 3:28 pm

I hope you won’t mind if I ask to be considered a project for others along with you.

Jerry, I’d be honored.

If you can forgive me for saying “a-hole” on your site. :)

I think you are right in calling it “empty” and “destructive.” That is better than my “boring.”

159   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
December 31st, 2008 at 3:28 pm

Just like the Hitler principle, it is only a matter of time in any conversation with Paul or PB before they call you blind, faithless or a pig.

Chad – it was meant as a joke. Sorry if it offended you.

160   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 3:29 pm

It took me a bit to get what Chad is meaning…

But I understand that salvation is not about a “point in time when we say a prayer” and the reductionism in thinking that picking up a piece of paper is what converted someone to the faith is really a shallow view of salvaiton as a whole.

God was working in and on me many years before I came to faith… I tell my story as one who had no idea what or Who this “God thing” was about… complete chaos that was ever so eventual in how God pieced things together for me and still does.

It is that there is that salvation is reduced to being just that “prayer” or whatever someone uses to guide the person to faith is salvation itself that is objectionable… it then only seems that if that person meets our criteria or step or whatever then they crossed the line into salvation…

Salvation started with the Cross and resurrection… it then came to me in bits and pieces in many ways… and even after I came to faith, God has not stopped working His salvation in and through me… and He will not stop until He returns to judge all and I am clothed in the imperishable and incorruptible. Salvation is coming to realize that we have hope in the Blessed Hope who I Jesus and that all that is promised comes to pass.

None of us as “saved” until God completes all He has started… We have the promise and seal of the Holy Spirit that we are His and He will not lose us, and that He will finish what He started in us.

Salvation is a process of losing out life to gain His Life… It is not a point in time that one crosses some man made imaginary line… Our lives can be changed in an instant or can take many years to even begin to grasp our own salvation… that is why we are to approach it with fear and trembling and humility.

Phillipains 2: 12. Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed–not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence–continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, 13. for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose.

Our salvation is not “just” about us… it is about God working in and through us His will and purpose… To reduce salvation to just being about me being “saved” misses that it is all about God’s eternal plan and that we are provided to be a part of that plan by His Grace.

I “witnessed” in hopes some would get “saved”… Now I live my life that God gets the Glory in that His salvaiton and how God has changed me will bring Glory back to Him… it is not about me being the salesman rather… it is about being part of revealing the Kingdom of God to others in all I do…

It is about being a living sacrifice… my whole life sacrificed to gain His Life… and in sacrificing my life I am now a part of God reaching out to others.

iggy

161   Paul C    http://www.themidnightcry.com
December 31st, 2008 at 3:29 pm

We have pointed a few jabs at each other (the blah, blah return as well as the tool). Didn’t think you’d take it to heart as you did.

162   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 3:29 pm

What is an a-hole?

Is that something that we should call a brother in Christ?

PB, do you think it OK to call a brother in Christ a swine?

163   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 3:30 pm

Actually, if I met Chad on a street, or in a coffeeshop, I would not look on him as a project but another opportunity to share the glorious gospel.

Jerry,

how do you understand limited atonement?

164   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 3:33 pm

#162

Nope, I don’t. Nor a fool, Hitler, a-hole, or whatever.

In fact, to say that to a non-brother in Christ is worse in my view.

Name calling isn’t nice and it isn’t necessary.

165   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 3:36 pm

PB,

Actually, if I met Chad on a street, or in a coffeeshop, I would not look on him as a project but another opportunity to share the glorious gospel.

That is the same thing… how about looking at Chad as a person who is or can be saved by the same grace as you?

How about as you get to know him as a person you can exchange ideas and thoughts… and in that speak of what God has and is doing in your life?

To me what you stated means Chad is still a project/prospect to work on… and really only God can change a man… don’t deceive yourself thinking that you can change or fix anyone… you could not do so for yourself and needed Jesus so it would seem arrogant to think you can do so for others.

Your project is “sharing the glorious Gospel”… it is not meeting a fellow sinner on the road and lifting them up with hope and love… it is “getting them saved”…

iggy

166   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 3:38 pm

Actually, if I met Chad on a street, or in a coffeeshop, I would not look on him as a project but another opportunity to share the glorious gospel.

well, bring money. I drink a lot of coffee and the least you can do is buy it if you are going to proselytize me.

167   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 3:39 pm

Iggy, good thoughts on 160.

I like what you say about salvation not being just about us. I would stress that salvation is about everything God is doing in the world, beginning to end – and we are but parts of that greater plan. We are “caught up” in the story of salvation, not the focus of it.

168   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 3:45 pm

#166

I wouldn’t dream of not buying your coffee…

As long as it is organic and fair trade stuff…I will support it.

Of course, if you wreck it with cream, we cannot drink together….:)

169   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 3:53 pm

Iggy…

Were you ever from Glasgow Mt?

Dude, I spent like 6 summers there! How Bizarre. Maybe I picked up one of your tracts!

:)

170   Jerry    http://www.dangoldfinch.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 3:55 pm

PB,

My understanding of limited atonement is this: It is not in the Bible, therefore it is unbiblical. It was an attempt by a human being to rationalize a Sovereign God and rebellious humans without going insane. It makes God a monster who sends people to hell for no other reason that he has sovereignly decided to do so. Limited atonement cannot be reconciled with the Scripture that declares Jesus is the propitiation not only for our sins, but for the sins of the whole world. (1 John, etc.)

jerry

171   Neil    
December 31st, 2008 at 4:03 pm

As much as were should remember that salvation is a process, that we are saved, being saved, and ultimately will be saved, that it is more than just eternity on a new earth (not heaven)…

As much as it is all that…

Salvation is also a punctilio event at point in time when someone expresses their trust in Jesus as their savior and Lord.

I would not call either of those boring… nor should we engage in playing one part against the other.

It is as important to read/hear the truth and trust it as it is to live it out (cf. John 5:24)

172   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 4:11 pm

PB,

I grew up in Glasgow… and lived in Bozeman then moved to Monterey Ca…

I went to the Evangelical Church in Glasgow… left there at age 18… though I might have handed out tracts there I don’t remember. Most of my street witnessing was in Ca. Monterey, Santa Cruz…

What years were you in Glasgow? I left in 1983.

iggy

173   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 4:15 pm

Dude,I attended the Evangelical Free Church in 1979-1983 during the summer, and, in 83, as part of special youth group events. My girlfriend, Sandy Wimmer, and her family were members there. Also, Barbie and Chip Halverson and their dad Marlin Halverson. I graduated from Lustre (60 mi NE) in 1984.

Ever heard of Pines Youth Camp? It was an old Corps of Engineers camp. It was there I heard the Gospel for the first time and I was saved.

How cool.

174   Neil    
December 31st, 2008 at 4:19 pm

…this is getting creepy… in a cool sorta way.

175   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 4:25 pm

Neil…

If God was saving me before I “crossed” that point in time… and saved me then… and is saving me now… I cannot say when I actually came to faith.

I may have in a little church camp at age 10, or in a Church later in my teens… Both were significant events in my life as far as salvation. But i had no idea what I was doing at the time of either event.

In fact, I was such a partier in my high school days my “sinners prayer” was…

“If you can keep me sober tonight I will see what I can do for you.”

I had an experience after that prayer that changed my life… but was that when God saved me? I see that somehow I was saved in the plan of God well before that… but that was the beginning of my grasping my salvation with any realization God had a plan for me.

I know that sounds strange and even might come across a bit “Universalist” but to me it is not as I see that some can still have the Gospel plainly explained and walk away never grasping what they are walking away from…

It was not in my acknowledgement that I was “saved” it was by God’s grace I was saved and that He revealed it to me over time as I walked with Him… I was “saved” many years before I came to understand my faith and position in Christ… in fact over those years I was “saved” 5 or 6 times… or every Sunday… as I went to the alter in hopes God would take away my sin…

After I realized He did that at the Cross and I entered into what He already did I began to “get it”…

In a way that also sounds like Calvinist Election and maybe it is… but For me to state I had anything to do with my getting saved at this point in my walk seems arrogant as if I warranted God’s grace somehow.

I admit that is something I am still working through as far as how this “Salvation” works it way out yet again, it was not one time… but many for me.

And even since, I have had major shakings in my theology as God revealed His grace more to me. I am a firm believer in “eternal security” though I have even modified that over the years as that term is rather tainted… I prefer to say… It is God that makes things grow and if you are not growing but perishing, then you need to look at that… And if you are questioning your salvation, maybe you need to look at the reasons those doubts are happening and deal with those doubt.

But I see if we are in the Hands of God we will not fall out or be cast out… if He knows us and has started His work in us… He will finish it.

iggy

176   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 4:26 pm

Oh the days of the Valley County Fair….

The Wolf Point Stampede

Playing Basketball against the Nashua Pocupines

and urinating on the canadian side of the border….

177   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 4:36 pm

I said my first “sinners prayer” at Pine Youth Camp… and know the families well… I think I went to school with Sandy Wimmer but that was a while ago and I would have to see if she was in the grade ahead of me or behind me.

Our youth group used to take those Lustre kids out to Billings on road trips at times…

OK this is getting too weird for me… but if you came out of Lustre that explains a lot to me! :lol:

I sang at Lustre for one of our outreaches…

I was a good friend with Danny Gutenberg (who now thinks I am a heretic though I think he is messed up but some shortwave preacher that teaches that he is the only one not apostate. If you believe in the Rapture or eternal security you are not saved according to him… and my friend told me I was not saved because I believe in eternal security… that was my last trip to Glasgow and a heartbreaking one at that.

I was part to Brian Pantel’s youth group up at the Evangelical church up across the High School… I was also friends with Harvy Wall who now own Baker Jewlery.

iggy

178   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 4:39 pm

PB,

Now the real question is how you found out I was from Glasgow?

iggy

179   Neil    
December 31st, 2008 at 4:59 pm

So who is included in the salvation past?

John 5: 24 I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life. 25I tell you the truth, a time is coming and has now come when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God and those who hear will live.

180   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
December 31st, 2008 at 5:01 pm

Iggy.

It was on one of the posts of the year when I went back and read the comments.

I used to have a crush on one of Harvey daughters..or nieces…Dori Wall. LOL!

Doug Larson took me through a study on the book of John on a one week trek via canoe on the Missouri. It was after that I repented and placed my trust in the Savior. PYC is a precious place to me. I spent every summer there (the whole summer mind you) from 78-83. I learned to break horses, went on 100 mile trail rides to Wolf Point, but best of all, learned the Bible and heard the Gospel for the first time.

Lustre was one year of High School. It was after my choose his girlfriend over me ( I was too difficult, she didn’t like me) After all my years at PYC (78-83) he sent me to PYC, and I learned about Lustre. I was a bit too wild for them, but I survived the year.

Sandy Wimmer would have been two years behind you if I get my dates right…she was a sophmore when we dated in HS. Of course, you may have dated her, she liked older guys !!

181   Neil    
December 31st, 2008 at 5:03 pm

You should spit out that barth.

Maybe while you are doing so you can examine the mass that you got contemplating the lectio divina in a lotus.

Somebody needs to install a cliche filter.

182   Neil    
December 31st, 2008 at 5:14 pm

Iggy,

I believe it is clear from Scripture that there is “point in time” aspect to salvation… not limited to that, but includes that.

Our understanding may be progressive…

My story is similar in that I was born-again… and again…. and again….

183   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 5:37 pm

PB,

If I recall I think Sandy might have wanted to date me… though I was pretty much involved with Kathy Euel at the time… I was pretty loyal to her.

:LOL:

iggy

184   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 5:43 pm

Neil,

I would say the “point in time” was at the Cross… I used to say that one needs to know the day they were saved. and yet since then I have forgotten the date myself… :smile:

I am not totally disagreeing with you… but that point in time was many points in time for me and for many that I know. So to say it was one point does not reflect how it all happened.

I will say though the one thing that screwed me up was finding God’s grace… :lol:
At that time I was so shaken by Grace I changed so much of what I believed… It was about a yr before I attended a church regularly and it was hard not to judge that church in how they taught Grace… I became legalistic for Grace. :smile:

God has taken me through many phases of salvation… each one seems more profound. For me it was not a giant step into the Light, but as if I was walking in the shadows, testing and stepping gradually into the Light… I just cannot tell you when I found myself totally in the Light and no longer in darkness… other than when I found security in Christ and began to rest in His works and forsake my own.

iggy

185   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 5:44 pm

Salvation is fire insurance at its core, the rest is important icing. It’s the “should not persih” principle, that is if you believe in some form of post life “perishing”.

186   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 5:57 pm

Neil,

Hebrews 3: 7-13 7. So, as the Holy Spirit says: “Today, if you hear his voice, 8. do not harden your hearts as you did in the rebellion, during the time of testing in the desert, 9. where your fathers tested and tried me and for forty years saw what I did. 10. That is why I was angry with that generation, and I said, `Their hearts are always going astray, and they have not known my ways.’ 11. So I declared on oath in my anger, `They shall never enter my rest.’” 12. See to it, brothers, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. 13. But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.

I view salvation as “today”. It is now as the past (sins) are gone and the future is God’s…

So everyday is the “Today” to me now… Each day has it “salvation” and as one walks in humility in the “today” they can trust the past and the future is taken care of.

I hope that makes sense…

iggy

187   Neil    
December 31st, 2008 at 5:59 pm

I would say the “point in time” was at the Cross… I used to say that one needs to know the day they were saved. and yet since then I have forgotten the date myself… :smile:

I agree about the cross. But I also agree about knowing the date – can’t say I do.

I am not totally disagreeing with you… but that point in time was many points in time for me and for many that I know. So to say it was one point does not reflect how it all happened.

That was what I mean about my experience of being born-again… and again… again… This may have been my experience as far as altar calls and the like are concerned. But I still think there was one that “counted” as far as God was concerned. A point in time that I [had] crossed over from death to life.

188   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 6:00 pm

Remember when Paul stood before Felix and Agrippa he revisted the day on the Damascus Road as the point of His salvation. There is a moment when a person first meets and embraces Christ for the very first time and the Holy Spirit seals that person.

The rest is the salvation journey.

189   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 6:01 pm

Remember when Paul stood before Felix and Agrippa he revisted the day on the Damascus Road

Man, you are old Rick!

iggy

190   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 6:03 pm

You have no idea! I had many arguments with Whitefield about election!

191   Neil    
December 31st, 2008 at 6:04 pm

I’d say that has more to do with sanctification and faith than it does initial salvations and crossing from death to life.

True, these are all pieces of the ongoing salvation pie – but separate pieces nonetheless.

I guess what I mean to emphasize is the fact that I think believers can say “I am saved.” And that that “I am saved” had a punctilio starting point whether we can actual name it or not.

192   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 6:04 pm

Rick,

I think that at the time Saul was standing while Stephen was being stoned… God was working in Paul… I see that Paul loved God and in his zeal for God was trying to serve God his way… it was not coming to know God but that Paul came face to face with God through Jesus and found God had a different plan than he did.

Was Paul a changed man at that instance? Yes, but I still see Paul as being a believer in God… but did not have understanding in what God was doing.

iggy

193   Neil    
December 31st, 2008 at 6:05 pm

There is a moment when a person first meets and embraces Christ for the very first time and the Holy Spirit seals that person.

Agreed.

194   Neil    
December 31st, 2008 at 6:08 pm

I think that that was Paul’s John 5:24 moment.

Now, I agree that modernity has caused too many to put to much emphasis on having that moment, or getting others to consent to a set of facts. That’s being too heavily influenced by modernism.

On the other hand, I don’t think we should throw out the punctilio baby with the abusive bathwater.

195   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 6:11 pm

“And the heretic in me must add: When you have an insufficient view of Christ’s work on Calvary it is easy to lapse into a way of evangelizing that suggests we have to make good what God failed to do.”

Yea, Joseph Smith as well. That is just goofy, Iggy. On resurrection morning, salvation was through the gospel alone. Paul HIMSELF admitted he had been without hope and without God before Christ. It does not matter what we think – what do the Scriptures teach.

Lost or saved. There is no “believer in God but not Christ” category.

196   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 6:12 pm

The quote should be -

“Was Paul a changed man at that instance? Yes, but I still see Paul as being a believer in God… but did not have understanding in what God was doing.”

197   Neil    
December 31st, 2008 at 6:16 pm

Believing that there is a god, even the God of the Bible does not seem to meet the condition set forth by Jesus in John 5.

198   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 6:17 pm

He that has the Son, etc.

199   Neil    
December 31st, 2008 at 6:22 pm

He that has the Son, etcHe that has the Son, etc.

Yeah – though specifically I was thinking of…”whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life…”

200   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 6:23 pm

So a person can be saved just be believing in God, and not THE God who sent His Son?

201   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 6:25 pm

This is the work of God, that you believe ON HIM whom he has sent.

If we can be saved by believing in the Father but not the Son then words mean anything you want them to mean.

202   Neil    
December 31st, 2008 at 6:54 pm

So a person can be saved just be believing in God, and not THE God who sent His Son?

That’s not what I said… or meant to say.

203   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 6:56 pm

If you believe in THE God who sent His Son, you naturally believe in His Son.

204   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 8:11 pm

Rick,

Yea, Joseph Smith as well. That is just goofy, Iggy. On resurrection morning, salvation was through the gospel alone. Paul HIMSELF admitted he had been without hope and without God before Christ. It does not matter what we think – what do the Scriptures teach.

You are going apples and oranges on me….

There were not many Jews who did not believe in the Messiah… In fact most did… they just did not believe Jesus was the Messiah… so in a sense they we in the same place as the patriarchs were…

Saul believed in Messiah… just not Jesus… so in a sense he was on the “road” to find Jesus… as is the hope Paul expresses for all Jews sometime in the future.

I think you are missing the essence of what I am stating. Saul had hope in Messiah, but had none himself until he met Jesus… in that I agree… but that does not negate God was not at work in Saul before he became Paul…

Joseph Smith was a religionist at best and a con man at worst… so to compare Mormonism to the conversion of Paul is rather another topic and has nothing to do with what I am saying.

I see that there are uneducated Mormons that may be saved… not by Mormonism but by God’s grace… yet the issue is that they believe in ANOTHER Jesus other than THE JESUS… Their hope is to be a god like Jesus was a god… who was once a man like us… that is not the Gospel. Those that accept ANOTHER Jesus are not in Christ… though the potential is still there for them to be so. But again, there is no comparison between Joseph Smith who was out to create a new religion and Paul who was a zealous Jew who believed in Messiah but missed that Jesus of Nazareth was the True Messiah.

Paul had a misunderstanding and yet in his zeal believed he was serving the True God in his persecution… yet found out that he was wrong, repented of his persecution and began to walk with Jesus as Messiah. Paul had some of the Gospel right before his conversion… yet had not met the Person of Jesus.

My point again is that God is always working on us as far as salvation… some will hear the call and enter in some will not, but it is all God’s doing as He is in the process of bringing to life in us the Resurrected Christ Jesus.

Paul also took 14 years before he began to understand the new revelation he was receiving… so again, it was more the re-education of Paul after his encounter that was also part of his salvation process.

To deny that God works in someone before they are saved means that the Cross, Resurrection and Pentecost was all for nothing…

The Cross gave forgiveness through the free justification by Grace.

The Resurrection gave us Life Eternal…

Pentecost was the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on all flesh so that we could hear God’s call and receive all He had for us…

We receive the Holy Spirit as a seal and promise that the New Life in us is secure.

But to say that someone does not have God working in their lives before they come to the tipping point means the Cross was for nothing… and then negates all else God has done for us to possess salvation in Christ.

iggy

205   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 8:21 pm

Neil,

I agree it is a crossing over from death to life… but I am not so sure there is a clean line in the sand that one crosses… I think there is a conversion transition that can happen over a span of time before someone comes to a “secure” faith.

I see that many call themselves “christian” but have never crossed over from death to life… and some profess Jesus yet fewer possess the Life of Christ. I am not saying all are “saved” but that many are on a “process toward salvation”… some begin and never cross over… and some cross over… I just do not see that there is a line in the sand so to speak.

If there is… it is different for each person… it is not like a fixed point that all reach some magical spot then get saved… it is relational… those that persist in doing God’s will will cross over eventually… some will know (meaning that it is evident that something is changed in them) and some will struggle for years not knowing… but in the end it will be God who judges.

Rom 2: 6. God “will give to each person according to what he has done.” 7. To those who by persistence in doing good seek glory, honor and immortality, he will give eternal life.

Again, this is not “works” but that as one grows in the knowledge and grace of Jesus they will grow and understand God’s will and purpose in and what God has prepared for them to do.

Again, though I do not see it as a fixed point as in “saying a prayer” though in a sense it can be… or going to the alter… these may be points leading to Life in Christ…. or they may be emotional responses that lead nowhere.

iggy

206   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
December 31st, 2008 at 8:24 pm

That entire essay is a fairy tale, my friend. Paul was zealous of the law and in no way indicated he believed in Messiah. And when one believes the Messiah to be someone who resues the nation of Israel from persecution, they do not believe in the Biblical Messiah.

Everyone can write and believe their own personal story of all it, Scriptural revelation notwithstanding as a means to hold out hope to those outside of Christ.

“To deny that God works in someone before they are saved means that the Cross, Resurrection and Pentecost was all for nothing…”

The statement for the ages. I surrender my end of the discussion, I’ve realized I walked through the wrong door.

207   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 9:18 pm

Again, Rick… Almost all Jews believed in Messiah… it is that they rejected Jesus as Messiah that was the issue. So historically you are off a bit.

iggy

208   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
December 31st, 2008 at 11:22 pm

Let me try to explain it this way.

In the Song of Songs… it starts out with the Beloved pursuing the loved… she falls in love but still hesitates to let the Beloved in. Later she states “He is mine and I am His”… and later moves it to ” I am my Beloved and He is mine” and ending with I am my Beloved”

I see that this is the progression we all take in one form or another. Yet, I could not tell where in that comes salvation.

Is is in the original pursuit? When we accept Jesus in our life? When we exchange our love for His? When we fully surrender to His Love and rest in it?

It is all part of the process and without all it becomes less than the whole it is supposed to be.

To say one is saved only when they accepted the Beloved… to me means then that the pursuit was not part of the salvation package. To say it is the end result of total surrender means that the process was not necessary… and so on… I see it as a whole package that is wrapped up in Jesus’ loving pursuit, the beginning of a relationship… the maturity of the relationship and the final surrender to the relationship for all the glory to the Beloved… as a process salvation is bigger than crossing a line in the sand… for in this process where is the line? Is it the original pursuit? Is it the falling in love and claiming the Beloved as one’s own? Is it claiming to be the Beloved and that He is yours? Is it in the total surrender to the Beloved and being lost to one’s self in the Beloved?

That is the only way I can explain why I no longer can see the line in the sand… is it ever moving forward? Is it at the beginning, middle or at the end?

I see in salvations design that it is ever drawing us deeper… it is not a line but an ocean that goes ever deeper and wider…

iggy

209   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 1st, 2009 at 12:01 am

You have completely blurred the lines between the initial translation from the kingdom of darkness to the kingdom of light – and the eternal growth of that relationship. Before that initial and defining moment of faith, the sinner lives in darkness and is a pawn of his father the devil.

The pursuit is not salvation, faith in Christ, a mustard seed faith, ignites the glory of the gospel and transforms a lost sinner into a found sheep. It is all by the power of God’s Spirit and each saint’s journey to faith is different, but the journey is not salvation or even some part of salvation, no, salvation is in Christ and His cross and resurrection.

Faith alone is the key that unlocks the free gift of salvation, and that faith is God’s gift as well. Salvation has a beginning, but it will never have an end.

210   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
January 1st, 2009 at 12:15 am

Ahhh… but Rick… the pursuit is the initiation of God in the action to bring the mustard seed of faith alive… so without the pursuit there is no seed planted. But if the seed is not planted in good soil… will it grow or not?

Sometimes it does and sometimes it does not… so also some do not move from conversion to the light… they stay only in the ground and never push through the dirt to the Light… to be mature in Christ. Remember only God makes things grow…

iggy

211   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
January 1st, 2009 at 12:28 am

And again I am not arguing agaisnt salvation being in Christ through the Cross and Resurrection… in fact I am stating it all hinges on just that.

As I stated, without the Cross there is not burial… no burial no resurrection… no resurrection no Glorification… in the end no salvation for us.

That is the story of Song of Songs and as I see salvation as we play it out in God’s plan. With out all the parts we cannot be saved… if the seed is planted and dies… no salvaiton… if it pops out on dry ground and withers… no salvation… if it grows out to be eaten by the birds… no salvation if it is planted and the roots go deep and the stalk pushes out and seeks the Light… and grows to maturity… then there is salvation…

It is the whole process… It all hinges on all things working toward the end where we meet Jesus and are clothed in the imperishable…

You are not saved until the Redeemer returns to redeem you. You have only the promise of redemption. Yes we are redeemed from the curse now, but as far as it all being fulfilled, Jesus needs to still return.

Rom 9: 8. In other words, it is not the natural children who are God’s children, but it is the children of the promise who are regarded as Abraham’s offspring.

Ephesians 1: 13. And you also were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation. Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, 14. who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession–to the praise of his glory.

The tricky part is that salvation was, is and will be.

It came at the Cross… it is through Christs Life now and will be when He returns.

Again, I am only saying that it is not when one says a prayer… I am saying we do not initiate salvation… God does… If we do that would mean we have merited grace by works… and grace would not be Grace.

Salvation is our journey… we are ever being saved “today”.

I know this may be hard to get… and I wish I could explain it better.

iggy

212   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 12:30 am

Salvation is fire insurance at its core, the rest is important icing.

yikes.

Rick, was this one of your attempts at sarcasm? I hope so.

213   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 12:33 am

Of course, if you wreck it with cream, we cannot drink together….:)

Black and strong. No additives.

And bring your tracts with you. If we feel inspired maybe we can roll a few and….well, nevermind.

214   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 1:15 am

The evangelism talks inspired this tonight:

Would You Like Some Jesus With Your Soap?

215   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 1st, 2009 at 8:50 am

“Rick, was this one of your attempts at sarcasm? I hope so.”

The only way someone could downplay an escape from eternal justice in a place beyond words is if they either don’t believe it exists, or if they believe no one will go there.

There are unsaved people who live lives of wealth, health, success, contentment, and fulfillment in their marriages and children. But there are no unsaved people who will escape eternal judgment. I call that the absolute core of salvation.

Sinners, the Word tells us, feared death all their lives until Christ. The last enemy to be conquered was death, the awful second death. Salvation includes this life, but deliverance from hell is primary to the gospel message. Those who either do not believe that or downplay its reality are misrepresenting the mission of Christ, the gospel itself, and the danger in which an unregenerate sinner finds himself.

The entirety of Scripture teaches a judgment to come and a redemption to be offered. The millions of gallons of animal blood shed by twitching, dying animals in the tabernacle was not some gruesome depiction of living a happy life, they are limited pictures of the coming Lamb of God Who will shed His blood for the forgiveness of sins and the gift of eternal life.

When someone teaches a hell-less Christianity and a total reconciliation of every sinner culminating in everyone dwelling with God eternally, they are not teaching Christianity. And among all the things about which a believer is grateful, there can be no deeper gratitude than that which praises God for His deliverance from hell for an unworthy and undeserving sinner.

So to the consternation of some, I reiterate in the parlance of doctrinal colloquialism,

“Salvation is fire insurance at its core, the rest is important icing.”

You may not like it now, but one day you will either love it or reap its consequences.

216   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 9:25 am

Rick, I was hoping for sarcasm :)

I couldn’t disagree with your reduction of salvation to “fire insurance” more. It renders the 33 years prior to Christ’s crucifixion and the resurrection meaningless. If God’s aim was simply to free us from hell it only required a sacrifice – a penal substitution. Not a resurrection and certainly not a 3 year ministry of teaching and healing.

Remarks like these:

The only way someone could downplay an escape from eternal justice

tell me that you are still making the mistake of melding together God’s justice with bad tidings or news. They are not the same thing. God’s justice is to be celebrated and longed for – it is something all of creation groans for. It is when God puts everything to rights. It does NOT mean that when we face God’s justice (a day we ALL face) that we are going to hell. It means sin, death and all that threatened to disrupt God’s plan of complete reconciliation is dealt with. None of this necessitates an eternal hell. However, should a person continually reject the generous and gracious offer of grace and life over and over (and perhaps even in the crucible of judgment itself?) then God may certainly say to such a one, “Thy will be done.” (It is not God’s will to send anyone to hell). Thus, in the words of one great pastor, “Hell is the impossible possibility.”

The anemic gospel of fire insurance violates the entire story of scripture from beginning to end. Israel was not saved so that they would go to heaven – they were saved for something – to be a light to the world, to showcase God’s love and saving action taking place in the fallen world. Willimon says, “A Christian is not saved in order to be plucked out of the damned rabble of humanity, but rather is saved in order to be truly for humanity.” We are the people that live ahead of time, he goes on to say – we are the people who reveal to the world that God is up to something (and hopefully, in our best moments, that “something” is seen as something good). A Christian is saved not because hell is looming large but because we have a job to do. To pray and work that God’s Kingdom come on earth as it is in heaven.

We do not love God because he saved us from hell. We love God because he first loved us. In a similar way, I do not love my parents because to not love them would mean excommunication and eternal punishment.

217   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 1st, 2009 at 10:02 am

Iknow Mormons who are wonderful people, kind and generous. I know hardshell Calvinists who have adopted children like you, and who believe firmly in the penal substition, who are gentle and loving to their neighbors. I have even know atheists who are hospitible and sincerely interested in the welfare of others. And I know many unregenerate people who love people, are forgiving and gracious, and are greatly involved in humantarian ventures.

What good has the cross done in their lives when they “outshine” many professing believers? That is the crux of the matter, that the outward expressions of a saved person should be an important part of our salvation experience, however the motivation for such expressions is our translation from darkness to light, and the realization that we now have eternal life (Jn.3:16) with Jesus Christ which is a different scenario that awaited us before we were born again.

Most of humankind, around the world and even in the church, continue to be self centered, self righteous, hedonistic, and only interested in humanity when inconvenience and painful sacrifice is not involved.

Centuries ago, two German boys, saved by grace and aligned with the Moravian missionaries, boarded a ship in the Netherlands headed for an island in the Carribean. On that island there were 300 slaves, and the owner would not allow any Christian missionaries to come and preach to his slave lest they upset the tranquility and profit.

These two boys felt called by God to go and tell them of Christ, but the only way they would be allowed entrance was to sell themselves as slaves to the owner, which they joyfully did. The money they were paid for a lifetime of service they used for the ship fare to get there.

Their families were grief stricken, and as they waved to them as the ship began to leave the harbour one of the boys yelled out to the waiving crowd,

“May the Lamb that was slain receive the reward of His sufferings!!”

That reward, Chad, is much more than a reorganized lifestyle, or a greater sympathy for humanity, and that reward soars infinitely loftier than anything possible on this earth. That reward, purchased within the scarlet wounds of the Christ, defeated eternal death and opened wide the door to eternal life. All who by faith in that Lamb enter through that door will dwell with the Risen Christ forever.

No food program, no hospital, no clothing drive, no prison visitation, and no expression of humanitarian concern can match that reward. And if you take EVERY SINGLE EARTHLY ACT OF KINDNESS BY EVERY HUMAN BEING EVERY BORN and condenced them as one, they would fall infinitely short of one small drop of Christ’s blood that paid the price for our sin and freed us from the sentence of eternal death and judgment.

In fact, all thos acts of kindness are designed to point to Christ and His redemption or else the person who receives that kindness can treat us like God and miss the redemptive essence in that act that must point to Jesus the Christ and not the human conduit.

218   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 10:24 am

What good has the cross done in their lives when they “outshine” many professing believers?

Indeed, that is a problem we who profess to believe should address.

While eloquent, none of this necessitates a hell or proves that the “core” of salvation is “fire insurance.” Being translated from “darkness to light” and receiving the gift of “eternal life” is not the same as saying one has been saved from an eternity in a hell that was created for people who are not fortunate enough to pick up a piece of trash (I mean, tract) off the street. It means that they have had their eyes opened to the fact that there is a God who loves even them (along with the world) and is sweeping them up in his redemptive plans for all the world. The “eternal life” certainly includes an eternity with God but that is the icing, not the reason we are saved. We are saved for the sake of humanity (just as Israel was saved for the sake of the nations) – to be God’s light in a dark world that needs light.

You seem to have this feeling that no one can possibly want to serve and love God unless they can know that there are some who will burn forever and that they were once one of those “some” to such a fate. I would argue that your penchant to require some reward vs. punishment in order to make faith in Christ “worth it” is more about human philosophy and psychology than it is about God’s revelation of himself through scripture and more importantly through Jesus Christ.

219   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 10:33 am

It does NOT mean that when we face God’s justice (a day we ALL face) that we are going to hell. It means sin, death and all that threatened to disrupt God’s plan of complete reconciliation is dealt with. None of this necessitates an eternal hell. However, should a person continually reject the generous and gracious offer of grace and life over and over (and perhaps even in the crucible of judgment itself?) then God may certainly say to such a one, “Thy will be done.” (It is not God’s will to send anyone to hell). Thus, in the words of one great pastor, “Hell is the impossible possibility.”

Who cares what Willimon says…what does scripture say?

In order to believe this, you must remove every instance where God inspired the human authors to write about His wrath. To believe this, you must remove every instance where Jesus spoke about Hell. You must take Jesus’ own words in John chapter 3 where He speaks about condemnation, and about mankind being condemned. And the entire purpose of the cross is lost, for God sent His son Jesus to save the world. My question for you Chad is this: What did he come to save us from? I know what you believe what he came to save us to- that is the purpose of our salvation, you believe, is to be conduits of God’s kingdom to this earth (partially true) But what did Jesus come to save us from? If it is not Hell and death, why not continue in the use of the blood of lambs and of bulls? Why did the only begotten of God have to be made flesh and dwell among us? Why did His blood have to be shed?

220   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 10:58 am

Who cares what Willimon says…what does scripture say?

I care more about what Willimon has to say from decades of preaching and teaching scripture than what your own interpretation of scripture has to offer.

What did he come to save us from?

The bondage of sin and death.

And he did it.

It is finished.

You are reconciled to God. Because of Jesus the world is saved (not just potentially saved). We who know Jesus have life because we know that sin and death are defeated – where is death’s sting? Nothing, not even death, can separate us from the love of God in Jesus Christ.

But look, out of respect for Neil I am not getting into this debate again. My comment to Rick was simply to point out how I disagree with his reduction of salvation to mere fire insurance. We can agree to disagree on that.

peace.

221   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 11:01 am

I care more about what Willimon has to say from decades of preaching and teaching scripture than what your own interpretation of scripture has to offer.

What about what scripture has to teach???

222   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 11:04 am

What about what scripture has to teach???

Just what do you think Willimon or myself are taking our cues from?

The bottom line, PB, is I disagree with your interpretation of scripture and the way you use it.

223   Neil    
January 1st, 2009 at 11:07 am

If you believe in THE God who sent His Son, you naturally believe in His Son. – Rick

Orthodox Jews would believe in the God how sent his Son, but not the Son… other than that I agree.

224   Neil    
January 1st, 2009 at 11:18 am

If God’s aim was simply to free us from hell it only required a sacrifice – a penal substitution. – Chad

I think now you are guilty of reductionism.. Rick did not say God’s am was “simply” – he said salvation was “primarily” or ultimately” or as he said “at its core.”

225   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 1st, 2009 at 11:19 am

“Orthodox Jews would believe in the God how sent his Son, but not the Son… other than that I agree.”

Then they do not believe in the true God. To deny the Son is to deny the Father. Jesus told a parable about an owner sending his son to oversee his business and they killed him. He indicated they were in for judgment from the owner. They asked what about if someone was raised from the dead?

They will not believe him either. Jews without Christ are no different than Gentiles without Christ. Lost of saved, that is the only division. In the end Israel may believe on Christ, but right now they have been cut off (Rom.11)

226   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 11:20 am

Just what do you think Willimon or myself are taking our cues from?

You don’t want to know, but it is surely not the Bible…Old or New Testament.

Perhaps you picked one up at Mass and it includes the Apocrytha and perhaps the Apocrytha promotes these teachings.

I am truly confused.

227   Neil    
January 1st, 2009 at 11:22 am

“A Christian is not saved in order to be plucked out of the damned rabble of humanity, but rather is saved in order to be truly for humanity.” We are the people that live ahead of time, he goes on to say – we are the people who reveal to the world that God is up to something (and hopefully, in our best moments, that “something” is seen as something good). A Christian is saved not because hell is looming large but because we have a job to do. To pray and work that God’s Kingdom come on earth as it is in heaven. – Chad

I agree completely. Yet what you speak of is true for Christians. There is a hell looming for those who are not.

228   Neil    
January 1st, 2009 at 11:30 am

In order to believe this, you must remove every instance where God inspired the human authors to write about His wrath. To believe this, you must remove every instance where Jesus spoke about Hell. You must take Jesus’ own words in John chapter 3 where He speaks about condemnation, and about mankind being condemned. And the entire purpose of the cross is lost, for God sent His son Jesus to save the world.

I was tracking with you PB until the last line… Chad’s interpretation must gut the Bible of all you say, but it does not negate the purpose of the cross.

I agree that Chad is woefully naive in his interpretation of the Scriptures, but I think it condescending to say he does not take his cues from the Bible.

229   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 11:31 am

I agree completely. Yet what you speak of is true for Christians. There is a hell looming for those who are not.

Oh Neil,

You are saying God cannot do what he asks us to do. To say that there is a Hell is saying that God cannot forgive. To say the cross is a payment for sin and it saves us from Hell is false advertisement for God.

230   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 1st, 2009 at 11:31 am

I care not what popes or bishops or preachers or any human being believes or teaches. What do the Scriptures teach to me by the Holy Spirit? This facination with men is nothing short of idolatry, and since we all could resurrect a quote from someone who supports what we believe, the exercize is worthless.

I am greatly benefited by devotional material from a plethera of different preachers from many doctrinal persuasions, however to use them as proff of Biblical interpretation is neither right nor safe, and in fact indicates a level of personal laziness and has “men’s personages in admiration” which was castigated by Paul.

“Those that seemed somewhat in counsel ADDED NOTHING TO ME”.

231   Neil    
January 1st, 2009 at 11:31 am

Perhaps you picked one up at Mass and it includes the Apocrytha and perhaps the Apocrytha promotes these teachings. – PB

This is helpful?… funny how I can disagree so much with Chad, yet we engage civil like… yet you, who I probably have much more doctrine in common with, frustrate me more than he with your attitude and condescension.

232   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 1st, 2009 at 11:34 am

One may say that much of the adjectives in Scripture concerning hell are metaphorical, and well they may be. One may conclude that all unregenerate souls are annihilated and destroyed after death. But it is supremely disingenous with the Scriptures to teach that every sinner will eventually be saved and dwell with Christ.

If that is the truth then the Bible is a lie.

233   Neil    
January 1st, 2009 at 11:35 am

On the previous thread one of the issues was God not getting what he wanted… and how this played with his sovereignty. Some said if any went to hell, it meant God was not sovereign because his will wa none would.

What of the cross itself? Was it really God’s will for his Son to suffer? Did he really desire such pain?

234   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 11:36 am

I am truly confused. – PB

Finally, some truth.

235   Neil    
January 1st, 2009 at 11:37 am

If that is the truth then the Bible is a lie. – Rick

Or at the very least it is deceptive, since there are lots and lots of references and warnings of condemnation if it (ultimately) does not exist.

236   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 11:39 am

But it is supremely disingenous with the Scriptures to teach that every sinner will eventually be saved and dwell with Christ.

If that is the truth then the Bible is a lie.

No. Your understanding of it was just wrong.

Nothing is impossible with God.

Part of the problem here is some of your understandings of the purpose of the cross. The cross was not to appease an angry God. The cross was to ransom and set free the captives (and they weren’t captive to God).

God is not the angry task-master many of you seem to make him out to be. And Jesus is not the “good cop” who saves us from the “bad cop.”

So yes, PB, the cross when used in that way is false advertising for God.

237   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 1st, 2009 at 11:39 am

“since there are lots and lots of references and warnings of condemnation if it (ultimately) does not exist.”

And if all those warnings and metaphors and parables are just meant to scare us into obedience, then God is just like a parent who screams and screams and threatens their children only to aquiesce and not do what he said he would do.

In essence…lying.

238   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 1st, 2009 at 11:44 am

What kind of a God creates some children and then lets them walk in the street and get taken captive by the devil? What that His desire? Mothers get arrested for leaving their children alone in the car and someone steals them or they die of heat. So God can create the universe but He cannot keep track of His own children?

Chad – Your view of almost everything Biblical is a fairy tale and an invention of other men’s imaginations that you have adopted. The cross was many things, a ransom to be sure, but it was the payment for our sins extracted from the veins of God’s own Son, the Divine Passover Lamb.

Your story is just that.

239   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 11:48 am

And if all those warnings and metaphors and parables are just meant to scare us into obedience, then God is just like a parent who screams and screams and threatens their children only to aquiesce and not do what he said he would do.

In essence…lying.

Rick, that is just nonsense.

You characterize strident language about what could potentially happen if you continue to refuse the grace of God with scare tactics? That is absurd. The talk of hell (which is VERY sparse) was directed towards a certain audience – it was a family squabble that had been going on for centuries. I liken it to the same sort of harsh talk many of us practice here. Jesus was not above hyperbole.

This is NOT to say that hell is not real or a potential reality. But this is not why Jesus came to die. We may end up in hell by our own choosing – our own rejection of the grace freely offered and given and accomplished for ALL – but that does not mean hell is inevitable or that it is God’s desire for anyone to be there. God will get all God desires. Period.

And I take exception with your characterization that God would be lying if he doesen’t damn somebody. I call it grace. I call it mercy. God will be merciful to whomever God desires. Who are you to demand that some must suffer eternally in hell in order to make God’s redemptive plan noteworthy?

Are you going to accuse God of being a liar if he, in the end, saves all? Of course you will not. You will rejoice that you are counted among the many and be in awe that God loves his enemies even more than we do and has the power to transform their enmity into worship through his judgment and justice and love.

240   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 11:51 am

Rick, I invite you to read the chapter synosis’ I am doing of Willimon’s Who Will Be Saved?

Until you have some background understanding of this subject there is no point in discussing this with you or anyone else. Your mischaracterizations of what God’s universal love means are tiresome.

I am going to suspend discussion on this topic until those desiring to debate it either read Who Will Be Saved? or at least read my summaries of each chapter.

241   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 1st, 2009 at 11:53 am

There are many who are the children of wrath and it isn’t Satan’s wrath, it is God’s. I was once such a child, willfully rebellious and an enemy of my own Creator, but through the punishment that Christ took that should have been mine, I am not only free to go, I am a child of the Living God and a younger sibling of my gloriour Older Brother.

That is so much more than feeding the poor or being nice, that is the everlasting gospel of Jesus Christ. BEHOLD what manner of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called the SONS OF GOD.

Not just good deed doers, not just the Red Cross, and not just a ZGood Will outlet, we have been received as God’s own sons and our good works are to lift Him up and point those with whom we once came to the bloody cross and the empty tomb as shout – Repent and believe the gospel!!!

This is far above earthly matters, far above hunger and shirts, this gospel redounds across the entire seen and unseen universe and will one day utterly and breathtakingly glorify the Risen Christ before all living creatures. And as we witness the unregenerate cast into the lake of fire we will fully and completely realize two unmistakable truths.

GOD IS JUST.

and

ONLY BY GOD”S GRACE ARE WE REDEEMED.

242   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 11:55 am

GOD IS JUST.

and

ONLY BY GOD”S GRACE ARE WE REDEEMED.

Amen. Praise God for Calvary.

grace and peace, Rick.

243   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 11:57 am

I will read who will be saved by willimon if you will read, in conjunction, Wayne Grudham’s systematic theology.

244   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 11:59 am

Not just good deed doers, not just the Red Cross, and not just a ZGood Will outlet, we have been received as God’s own sons and our good works are to lift Him up and point those with whom we once came to the bloody cross and the empty tomb as shout – Repent and believe the gospel!!!
This is far above earthly matters, far above hunger and shirts, this gospel redounds across the entire seen and unseen universe and will one day utterly and breathtakingly glorify the Risen Christ before all living creatures. And as we witness the unregenerate cast into the lake of fire we will fully and completely realize two unmistakable truths.
GOD IS JUST.
and
ONLY BY GOD”S GRACE ARE WE REDEEMED.

Amen.

Why did we need to be redeemed?

From what did we get redeemed?

What happens when we are not redeemed?

How do we get redeemed.

Please answer, from scripture. Thank you!

245   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 1st, 2009 at 11:59 am

I will just read my own comments and with that be instructed. :cool:

246   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 12:01 pm

lol PB. Been there done that.

Grudham was one of the texts we read in my undergrad systematic class.

If you want to argue against God’s universal salvation then it is your responsibility to at the very least become familiar with what it means and does not mean. Then you will at least have some credibility.

247   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 1st, 2009 at 12:05 pm

Cahd is a sincere guy who is representative of denominations like the Mothodists who have left their founder’s teachings and continue to follow a downward doctrinal spiral. In the end, they do not even present the gospel in a Biblical format so that many are in danger of emracing a falsehood and remaining in their unregenerate state.

This is not some finer point doctrinal skirmish, this goes to the heart of what is Christianity and the authority of Scripture.

248   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 12:10 pm

Rick, you really should stop.

FYI- Willimon is a Methodist Bishop who cites Wesley throughout his book. Since you refuse to learn from anyone but yourself you continue to spout off things that are just foolish and irresponsible.

I admire your love for the gospel. I am not your enemy, nor are those who profess God’s universal love and redemption.

The irony of ironies is you of all people taking exception with any church body “leaving the teachings” of their founder! The guy who cares nothing about what others think should rejoice that the church would do such a thing!

249   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 12:14 pm

#247 Amen Rick.

The Wesleys are truly rolling over in their graves. The rode thousands of miles, preached thousands of sermons, prayed, studied, believed the Bible, not to create a denomination- they were Anglicans- but for the glory of God and to see souls saved.

Todays Methodists question the Bible, and therefore reinterpret the faith, don’t see the need for salvation, allow homosexual ministers, (because homosexuality is not wrong, after all.) It is truly sad, because it has fallen so far from the vision of those who founded it.

250   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 12:17 pm

#248
Cite Wesley and the Bible all you want, but when you cut and paste to fit your own sensibilities it is not receiving the author’s intent.

251   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 12:17 pm

Todays Methodists question the Bible, and therefore reinterpret the faith, don’t see the need for salvation, allow homosexual ministers,

All of this is a lie, PB, and especially the last part. We DO NOT allow for homosexual ministers. In fact, we just voted AGAIN in our last general conference that we would not.

I have told you this before. There is only so much I can tolerate and blow off as just ignorance on your part. I am convinced you are just a liar and will say anything in order to win an argument.

252   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 1st, 2009 at 12:22 pm

“I am not your enemy, nor are those who profess God’s universal love and redemption.”

No, you are not, but your teachings are. I noted that your denomination bears Wesley’s name but not his doctrine. Of course there are different streams of Wesleyan denominations, but yours is much more liberal than some others.

Universalism is a dangerous and damnable heresy and must be confronted for the sake of God’s truth and the souls of unsuspecting sinners. It is sometimes unpleasant but not as unpleasant as the doctrine itself. We have been warned of a great falling away and we are now spectators to that continuing event.

I do not espouse the tactics of many ADMs, but I cannot ignore teachings that misrepresent the gospel and subvert the work of the Holy Spirit.

253   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 12:23 pm

Which Methodists?

Because there is at least two practicing homosexual ministers that are ordained methodist that I know of personally…

There are quite a number of ‘gay affirming’ Methodist churches….I do not know if the ministers are gay or not…

So these are just exceptions to the rule…?

254   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 12:23 pm

Well, Rick, I disagree.

I can understand your hostility. God’s universal love threatens your entire understanding of why people are saved.

When you read Willimon’s book I will be happy to discuss this “damnable heresy” further.

255   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 12:24 pm

PB- you are a liar.

God speed.

256   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 12:45 pm

Methodists Reinstate Defrocked Minister

By LAURIE GOODSTEIN

Published: April 30, 2005

n appeals panel of the United Methodist Church has reinstated a lesbian minister who was defrocked in December after revealing in a sermon to her Philadelphia congregation that she was living with her gay partner.

The decision overturns a ruling by a lower church court that removed the Rev. Irene Elizabeth Stroud from the ministry for violating Methodist law that forbids “self-avowed practicing homosexuals” to be ordained or serve as members of the clergy.

The panel, made up of clergy members and laypeople representing church districts in the Northeast, voted 8 to 1 to reinstate Ms. Stroud after a hearing in Baltimore. Last December, the lower court ruled 7 to 6 to remove her from the ministry.

The seesaw in church courts is only the latest sign of the divide over homosexuality in the United Methodist Church, the nation’s third-largest Christian denomination, with 8.2 million members. For years, gay members of the clergy in the denomination have functioned under a “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy. But in the past year two lesbian ministers, including Ms. Stroud, who disclosed their gay relationships were brought to trial.

“There’s a lot of confusion right now because of this decision today,” said the Rev. Thomas Hall, who represented the church in prosecuting Ms. Stroud. “Right now, the message that’s been sent to our 40,000 United Methodist ministers is that we can’t trust parts of the Discipline,” the church’s book of rules that includes the prohibition on practicing gay clergy members.

This is great, because it illustrates the disconnect between the laws and the reality. This is like Mars Hill’s statement of faith… Am I still a liar? Do they or do they not ordain Gay ministers? Does it make any difference if they function in a ‘don’t ask don’t tell’?
I say no…

In fact, the last time the denomination actually defrocked one of its ministers over homosexual behavior was in the 1987 Rose Mary Denman case. In 1999, Jimmy Creech was defrocked for performing same-sex union ceremonies.

HT Christianity Today

So is it really a law, or a suggestion?

In what progressive Methodists are calling an “extraordinary ordination,” two ministerial candidates have been granted clerical authority, despite having been previously refused ordination because one is a lesbian married to her female spouse, and the other supports GLBT equality.

The Baltimore Sun carried the story in Oct. 20, detailing how the ministers were ordained in Baltimore in a historic action said to be the first of its kind.

HT The Edge

What is the difference between clerical authority vs. being a minster? Is it supporting without supporting? Nope it is so they can operate a church within a church to those who are marginalized by the unenforced Methodist Book of Discipline.

I am a liar? The loosely applied book of discipline in modern methodism is just a microcosm of what is happening with the Bible in United methodism. there is a major disconnect, my friend. The denomination is living a lie. And it has departed from the Gospel.

257   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 1st, 2009 at 12:49 pm

God is no redemptive bully as Calvin would portray Him, tying down a rebellious sinner and making him say “uncle” to His offer of salvation. That inludes blanketing the entire human race with a strong-armed tactic of regeneration that circumvents the very will He granted us at the beginning.

The glory of salvation is an offering to every sinner, however to be fair and just every sinner should be banished from God’s presence. It isn’t the ones in hell who never heard the gospel who represent God’s unfairness, no, it will be the entirety of the blood washed throng in heaven that will represent a colossal legion of unfairness God calls “grace”.

Regardless of your eschatalogical persuasion the spreading and living of the gospel is the greatest continuing event on this planet, and all will face the justice of God without any scapegoat unless they believe on Christ. This is not tiddlywinks, and this is not the nonsense of a presidential election, this is ETERNITY.

No one is safe without the blood of the Passover Lamb on the doorposts of their hearts, and do not assume that goodpeople who are ignorant of Christ and His gospel will be exscused. God did not tell the Egyptians about the doorpost blood and yet he visited them with His judgment.

I do not relish and rejoice in God’s justice and judgment, but yet I do not deny it either. There is coming a great and dreadful day in which the Son of God returns to this earth, ruling with an iron hand, and taking flaming vengeance on all those who have refused Him. Many who professed Him will be exposed as frauds, much less those who rejected Him and worshiped themselves.

It is a frightening story, a story of Eden’s betrayal, a story of Scripture’s messianic revelation, a story of man’s sinful pathology, a story of incarnation, a story of gore and glory in Jerusalem, a story of a risen corpse, a story of redemption and salvation and eternal life, and a story, although seen through metaphors and similes, that will one day have an end/beginning.

The story centers around and is in fact Jesus. Do not define Him yourself, He has revealed Himself to all of us and He will do what pleases the Father, surely not what we’ve concocted and designed to please us.

258   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 1:12 pm

It is a frightening story, a story of Eden’s betrayal, a story of Scripture’s messianic revelation, a story of man’s sinful pathology, a story of incarnation, a story of gore and glory in Jerusalem, a story of a risen corpse, a story of redemption and salvation and eternal life, and a story, although seen through metaphors and similes, that will one day have an end/beginning.
The story centers around and is in fact Jesus. Do not define Him yourself, He has revealed Himself to all of us and He will do what pleases the Father, surely not what we’ve concocted and designed to please us.

Amen Rick…

And what we have concocted is a weak brother to the glory God will receive and the Joy we will get when we are ultimately saved- glorified and made like Him in heaven to dwell forever.

259   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 1:22 pm

I love how this loving man Chad can call me a liar, and when I produce evidence, he is nowhere to be found. Who is the liar, Chad?

I know it must be a shock, but there are Gays who are Methodist Ministers, and ‘don’t ask don’t tell’ is a policy that evades the ‘law’ and so these ministers are liars first by nature of being ordained, and those ordaining them and looking the other way are liars.

And it sounds like the Methodist church has lied to you Chad, and you project the lies on to me.

What about the disconnect? How does it relate to the view of truth?

When are you going to retract the statement?

Ruach

260   Jerry    http://www.dangoldfinch.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 2:18 pm

I know it must be a shock, but there are Gays who are Methodist Ministers, and ‘don’t ask don’t tell’ is a policy that evades the ‘law’ and so these ministers are liars first by nature of being ordained, and those ordaining them and looking the other way are liars.

Yes, there are also gays who are Lutherans, Calvinists, Baptists, Evangelicals, Nazarenes, Anglicans, Restorationists, Republicans, Democrats, Liberals, Conservatives, etc., etc., etc….

Sheesh. You act like Chad is out there writing Methodist doctrines or laying hands on people. Would you damn an entire congregation, and entire assembly because there are people in them you don’t like? Just because there are homosexuals doesn’t necessarily mean they are all practicing homosexuals either.

261   Joe    http://www.joemartino.name
January 1st, 2009 at 3:05 pm

Jerry,
Thank you for leaving “non-denoms” off of that list. Also, as a GARBC Baptist, and a SBC ordained Baptists, I am not sure that you are completely correct there, I’ll ask around and come back and tell you. (get it? Ask and Tell!!!) I kill me.
Seriously, folks it’s New Years. Take a day off.
PB, you probably have lied in your lifetime and as my dear mom used to say, “It only takes one lie to be a liar, after that you go into Politics.”

262   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 1st, 2009 at 4:55 pm

Are there sinners in those denominations, or are we just gay hunting??

I think I have heard that some Methodists ordained openly gay ministers, I am not sure if they required celebacy. I am wondering which denomination ordained Chad?

263   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
January 1st, 2009 at 5:00 pm

I am going to suspend discussion on this topic until those desiring to debate it either read Who Will Be Saved? or at least read my summaries of each chapter.

I guess I’m still wondering about the usefulness in one’s reading a modern author’s commentary on Who Will Be Saved? until he can reasonably exegete Who Will be Saved? from John (Rev 20, 21:27, etc.), Luke (Luke 13:1-9), Matthew (Matt 7:13, 21-13; 13:24-42;) Daniel (Dan 12) and plethora of other inspired writers had to say on the subject.

To take the reverse order of this seems pretty pointless and foolish…

264   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 1st, 2009 at 5:12 pm

I want everyone to read my book -

The Book of Moron

Not to be confused with The Book of Mormon, which I believe might contain some heresy. :cool:

265   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 1st, 2009 at 5:22 pm

Speking of using whatever source you want (Farah, etc.), why can you excoriate Roman Catholics on one side of your mouth, and then use a Roman Catholic like Phylis Schafly as support for your position.

You see, you don’t need to be consistent, just remember not to put your post about Ravi Zacharius supporting a Roman Catholic’s teachings right next to your endorsement of Ms. Schafly’s views.

Can you say “hypocrisy”?

266   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 1st, 2009 at 5:23 pm

The link to which I referred:

http://www.sliceoflaodicea.com/family/public-schools-have-impact-on-evangelical-kids/

267   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 6:34 pm

To take the reverse order of this seems pretty pointless and foolish…

Well, Chris, then don’t read the book.

I think I have heard that some Methodists ordained openly gay ministers, I am not sure if they required celebacy. I am wondering which denomination ordained Chad?

You think you have heard? Contrary to PB’s lies, the United Methodist Church does not ordain openly gay ministers.

Besides, this is nothing but a rabbit trail. Who cares, anyways? Hey, I’m not going to take Rick or John seriously because I heard somewhere that someone in their denomination is a sinner. sheeesh.

268   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 6:41 pm

I love how this loving man Chad can call me a liar, and when I produce evidence, he is nowhere to be found. Who is the liar, Chad?

It’s called having a life, PB. Do I have to ask you before I take my wife out on a date? You are a piece of work.

And you are still a liar.

The UMC does not ordain gay ministers.

269   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 1st, 2009 at 6:44 pm

I do not belong to any denomination. Surprised?

I read the UMC blog and they say that there is disagreement within the denomination that will be resolved by either allowing local congregations to do what they deem appropriate or have a denominational split.

I believe the only usefulness of denominations would be to cooperate in missions. This “vote on Biblical issues” by others not involved with your congregation is counterproductive. One man’s opinion without tears.

270   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 1st, 2009 at 6:48 pm

BTW – I believe the word “liar” indicates knowledge to the contrary. If John is wrong it is because he is misinformed, not intentionally lying.

271   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 6:49 pm

The UMC blog? What blog?

Rather than reading the opinions of some just read the official position of the UMC at http://www.umc.org. You can find it there. The same position towards homosexual ordination that they have always had was confirmed again at the General Assembly this past summer.

But once more: Who cares? This is nothing more than you and PB’s attempt at distractions and GBA.

272   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 6:49 pm

BTW – I believe the word “liar” indicates knowledge to the contrary. If John is wrong it is because he is misinformed, not intentionally lying.

I have told him many times, Rick. As I said before, I can tolerate ignorance. Having told him numerous times I believe him a liar.

273   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 7:01 pm

The UMC does not ordain gay ministers.

Yes, they do, they just did in October. Don’t ask don’t tell is simply an allowance to ordain Gay Ministers.

Their book of law says one thing, the church does another.

You are a liar, because I have proven that they do ordain gay members, and when they come out as gays, they do not defrock them.

274   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 1st, 2009 at 7:05 pm

Chad – I am confised about the issue. I went to the link you provided and could not find anything dealing with it. However I did find this interesting message by your founder embedded in the UMC website:

http://archives.umc.org/frames.asp?url=http%3A//gbgm-umc.org/UMhistory/Wesley/sermons/index.html

How Wesley restricted God’s grace, and he is a more authoritative source than Willimon in discussing Methodism, I would assume.

275   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 1st, 2009 at 7:07 pm

I was referring to the sermon entitled “hell”.

276   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
January 1st, 2009 at 7:45 pm

Speaking of UMC

USC is winning 31-7 …and its only the first half….

277   Neil    
January 2nd, 2009 at 1:26 am

I see no biblical evidence that God’s universal love trumps his justice.

278   chris    
January 2nd, 2009 at 7:58 am

I see no biblical evidence that God’s universal love trumps his justice.

I see no biblical evidence that Gods justice is the same as our justice.

279   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 2nd, 2009 at 8:04 am

Neil,
God’s love and God’s justice are not opposing forces.

280   chris    
January 2nd, 2009 at 8:10 am

PB for goodness sake a simple google search and you could of found all this:

Information about the last meeting and vote.

And the fact that the “ordained” minister was not exactly like the UMC sanctioned it.

A religious watchdog organization says the recent unauthorized ordination ceremony for a lesbian and another woman who champions homosexual rights is evidence of the theological tailspin plaguing the historic United Methodist Church in Maryland.

Last month, a so-called “extraordinary ordination” was held at Mount Vernon Place United Methodist Church in Baltimore. Organizers said the ceremony was sponsored by the Church Within A Church Movement, a Methodist group which bills itself as being the “inclusive church” and plants churches with the objective of providing ministry opportunities for “sexual minorities.” Annie Britton and Jenna Zirbel were “ordained” on Sunday, October 19. Britton is legally married to her partner in Massachusetts, and Zirbel says she had been denied ordination previously because of her stated support of “gay and lesbian people in the church.”

Mark Tooley
United Methodist Church (UMC) officials noted the ceremony was unauthorized. Mark Tooley with The Institute on Religion & Democracy believes organizers have a clear agenda.

“The Church Within A Church Movement is hoping that they are doing what the church as a whole will be doing in the near future,” he contends. “I am more hopeful that the church, having said no, will continue to say no to the acceptance of openly homosexual clergy.”

From Here:

Once again; sloppy and agenda filled.

281   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 2nd, 2009 at 8:14 am

PB- Since you seem to think that a left-wing rogue group dictates the ordination policy for an entire denomination I will not call you a liar. You are an ignorant fool. Better?

Rick-
Do you really want to make the argument that John Wesley was perfect and had everything right? Really?

Do you know that the early Methodists were charged with being universalists because of Wesley’s teachings on universal atonement?

282   Chad    http://www.chadholtz.wordpress.com
January 2nd, 2009 at 8:46 am

Rick,
Let me expound a bit further on what I said in 281.

I love Wesley. He has had a profound impact on my life. However, what would make him roll over in his grave is if we codified him and idolized him. You do not understand Wesley or Methodists very well if you think that is how we best honor our heritage and our founder or stay true to the Wesleyan spirit.

283   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 2nd, 2009 at 9:09 am

Of course Inever hinted at Wesley being perfect (however he did sometimes teach a form of perfectionism). My overarching point is that the UMC has moved so far away from John Wesley’s teachings that it seems to me Wesley would not be in favor of his name being identified with the UMC today.

* Any charge that Wesley taught universal atonement in the colloquial sense (everyone will be saved) had to be either disingenuous or a profound misunderstanding of his open and voluminous teachings.

284   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 2nd, 2009 at 9:21 am

My admiration for John Wesley does not necessarily center around what he believed, but I have always been affected by his early zeal to be holy (even by externals), his zeal for evangelism, his zeal for God’s Word, and the impact one man’s dedication to Christ can have.

I admire his mother as well.

And to be clear, what someone else teaches concerning points of doctrine carries little if any weight with me. I can read the Scriptures myself. But someone’s sacrificial life for Christ carries much weight with me, and that is why the men who have impacted my life are varied. Wesley, Finney, Edwards, Spurgoen, Moody, as well as Joni Erickson Tada.

Their committment to Christ continues to impacat me.

285   John Hughes    
January 2nd, 2009 at 10:01 am

Nothing is impossible with God.

The full counsel of God further refines this statement, i.e., nothing that is possible is impossible with God.

God cannot lie.
God cannot be tempted.
God cannot deny Himself.

Further exegesis of Scripture also infers further “limitations”, e.g.,

God cannot, not be.
God cannot be greater than Himself.

So the argument that nothing is impossible for God cannot be logically construed to mean God could change His mind at some future point in eternity and reverse what He has plainly (and repeatedly) revealed in Scripture regarding judgement and (eternal) punishment.

God cannot lie.

286   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 2nd, 2009 at 10:07 am

Good points, John. The statement “Nothing is impossible with God” cannot be leveraged to mean any and all theologies are acceptable.

287   John Hughes    
January 2nd, 2009 at 10:19 am

Chad,

I really don’t doubt your sincerity or your love for Christ. But to me your world view is a clasic ase of esegesis. You have taken your world view and let it govern your exegesis of Scripture rather than allowing Scripture to determine your world view.

Judgement is a central element of The Story as is redemption from that judgement. One does not trump the other.

You say Jesus does not mention hell often, but He does. We obviously have different definitions of “often”.

Your world view is pleasant and attractive from a human point of view, but I just can’t even begin to embrace it beause it requires so much outright ignoring or allegorizing away SO MANY scriptures. I really can’t understand how you can manage so much cognitative dissonance unless you just don’t read or meditate on the numerous passages which contradict your view.

Matthew 10:28 – “Do not fear those who kill the body but are unable to kill the soul; but rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.

Heb 10: 26-31 -For if we go on sinning willfully after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a terrifying expectation of judgment and THE FURY OF A FIRE WHICH WILL CONSUME THE ADVERSARIES. Anyone who has set aside the Law of Moses dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much severer punishment do you think he will deserve who has trampled under foot the Son of God, and has regarded as unclean the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and has insulted the Spirit of grace? For we know Him who said, “VENGEANCE IS MINE, I WILL REPAY ” And again, “THE LORD WILL JUDGE HIS PEOPLE.” It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

288   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
January 2nd, 2009 at 10:25 am

Oh, John….

How DARE you use the book of Hebrews…it is anti-semetic. And it is NOT the red words of Jesus, so it is tainted by the third-century views of the men who canonized the scripture.

You stupid modernist, you!

;)

289   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
January 2nd, 2009 at 10:28 am

#285

But John, that would have to mean that God has foreknowledge, uses predestination, and election, which is clearly a Calvainist idea, and found nowhere in scripture except under Paul, who current, wise scholars are redefining.

Look to the words of Jesus.

;)

290   Phil Miller    http://pmwords.blogspot.com
January 2nd, 2009 at 10:35 am

In Chad’s defense, I don’t think I’ve seen him out and out deny that there’s a Hell, or that there is some sort of judgment at the end. I really don’t know what good it does to continue re-hashing this, as it’s pretty clear that he’s going to think what he’s going to think. I think we all do. We all think we take Scripture the way it should be taken.

The thing that’s a bit disheartening to me is the way that it seems Chad has become a punching bag of sorts here. It seems that many of us think that if we throw enough Scripture around, we think that our opponent will suddenly see it and say, “aha, I see you were right all the time!”. Well that ain’t gonna happen. So please, again, can we move on from this conversation.

It’s ridiculous that virtually every thread has been steered to this over the last month.

291   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
January 2nd, 2009 at 10:44 am

#290

I’m game….

HOWABOUT THOSE USC TROJANS!!!

38-24…those poor little Nittany Lions…

292   Neil    
January 2nd, 2009 at 10:46 am

Neil,
God’s love and God’s justice are not opposing forces

I agree, but neither is his love the ALL powerful force that will cause him to forget his justice.

293   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
January 2nd, 2009 at 10:51 am

Every college has a legend, passed on from year to year,

Shouldn’t they be the Paternos then?

To which they pledge allegiance, and always cherish dear.
But of all the honored idols, there’s but one that stands the test,
It’s the stately Nittany Lion, the symbol of our best.

From the American Indian named ‘Mount Nittany” and the mountain lions that once roamed there.

Chorus:
HAIL! to the Lion, loyal and true.
HAIL! Alma Mater, with your white and blue.
PENN! STATE! forever, molder of men (and women),
FIGHT! for her honor — FIGHT! — and victory again.

Yes, only one loss, to the lowly Hawkeyes- before yesterday.

There’s Pittsburgh with its Panther,
and Penn her Red and Blue,
Dartmouth with its Indian,
and Yale her Bulldog, too.
There’s Princeton with its Tiger,
and Cornell with its Bear.
But speaking now of victory,
We’ll get the Lion’s share.

From those teams, my Hight school team could likely get the lion’s share of victory.

It seems the USC trojan is a mighty hunter. The beaver’s pelt did them in, but the lion was no match.

I only wish we could go Gator hunting right about now…

294   Phil Miller    http://pmwords.blogspot.com
January 2nd, 2009 at 10:52 am

I actually thought PSU did alright considering the whole game. They played a bad first half and couldn’t recover. Oh well…

The worst part about a loss like that while living here is listening to people bitch and moan about it for weeks – “JoePa’s too old… they can’t win a big game (nevermind the fact the won several throughout the year) blah, blah, blah”.

295   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
January 2nd, 2009 at 10:53 am

#292

Are we going back to universalism now, or can we keep on beating up on those pathetic little Nittany Lions?

296   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
January 2nd, 2009 at 10:54 am

Joe Paterno is a class act.

I don’t know how much he really ‘coaches’ any more. Isn’t it mostly his assistants?

297   Phil Miller    http://pmwords.blogspot.com
January 2nd, 2009 at 10:56 am

Try talking talking about the original article for once.

Personally it seems, whether one has some sort inclusivist view of eschatology seems to eschatology or not seems to have little bearing on whether or not they exhibit the fruit of the spirit or not. I known lots of bastards who believed in hell.

298   Neil    
January 2nd, 2009 at 11:06 am

In Chad’s defense… – Phil

I think you are correct Phil. Careful analysis and response is the higher road, not sarcasm and guilt by extension.

For example: it’s guilt by extension to say Chad does not think the cross necessary.

Kinda like attacking Warren by saying he does not think God can meet needs since he is willing to minister along-side non-Christians… guilt by extension adds unjustified guilt.

299   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 2nd, 2009 at 11:23 am

I believe I have used careful analysis, and the issue is tethered to the “who do you cooperate with” issue. It is an important issue and should be discussed often. A typical universalist never says the cross is unnexessary, he just says personal faith is unnecessary and that all the judgment verses in Scripture must be tempored/diluted by God’s love and grace.

Ane Neil, your characterization of disagreeing with Warren’s cooperating with non-christian religions as “attacking Warren” is unfortunate and inaccurate. If issues were not important the Bible would only have one verse – Jn.3:16.

Even then there would be malice, viciousness, and self righteous blogs. Curious…

300   John Hughes    
January 2nd, 2009 at 11:36 am

Phil: It seems that many of us think that if we throw enough Scripture around, we think that our opponent will suddenly see it and say, “aha, I see you were right all the time!”. Well that ain’t gonna happen.

Phil: I don’t understand that mindset. We are discussing the things of God. Scripture is all we (legitimately) have.

Hebrews 4:12 – For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.

2 Timothy 3:16 – All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness;

I, for one, can certainly be persuaded by a sound Biblical argument. Granted, everyone’s Biblical word view is imperfect and tainted by prejudices, groupthink, etc. But the Bible is where we have to start by definition.

Further, I am a firm believer in the Holy Spirit moving upon the human’s spirit via the medium of the Word. So yes I strongly believe that people can suddenly “see the light” as the Holy Spirit illuminates them via the use of Scripture.

I do not see Chad addressing both sides of the issue ** from Scripture**. I see the exclusive use of one “side” of Scripture and the complete ignoring of the other. All the balls have to remain in the air in this cosmic juggle. You can’t set some down because they are inconvenient.

301   Phil Miller    http://pmwords.blogspot.com
January 2nd, 2009 at 11:44 am

Phil: I don’t understand that mindset. We are discussing the things of God. Scripture is all we (legitimately) have.

I’m not saying that a person doesn’t ever change his mind, it just seems that in this format and with this issue, it’s very unlikely it will happen. Especially since it seems that all of us involved in the discussion profess to take Scripture seriously.

I guess I’m of the opinion that stating the same argument over and over again does not strengthen your case. At this point, it seems that all the cards have been laid on the table when it comes to the specific argument of Universalism. It seems useless to rehash it again and again. I would venture it is coming close to the type of argument described in Titus 3:9.

In the end, some of may be right and some may be wrong. We could all be wrong. By that point, I doubt many of us will care that much.

302   Bo Diaz    
January 2nd, 2009 at 11:51 am

I think what Phil is pointing out is that the use of proof texting is a very modernist view of scripture. People use particular pieces of scripture as a ‘*BAM* got ya’ kind of way. The two or three lines are seen as a sort of 10 Commandments, this is exactly what it says and carries it out. But the scriptures weren’t produced by modernists, they require contemplation, and a fuller understanding of their function, and how they work, which doesn’t come from reading a single scripture and thinking that settles everything.

The biggest example that comes to mind is when a Lordship Salvation type quotes a verse or two from Ephesians and then claims that homosexuals are going to hell. That’s great and all but it leaves out a whole lot of what scripture has to say especially in regards to sin that isn’t just tolerated in churches, but is often encouraged (after all the fruits of the Spirit include gentleness, joy, etc. something rarely exhibited by Lordship Salvation preachers).

303   Neil    
January 2nd, 2009 at 11:52 am

Ane Neil, your characterization of disagreeing with Warren’s cooperating with non-christian religions as “attacking Warren” is unfortunate and inaccurate. If issues were not important the Bible would only have one verse – Jn.3:16. – Rick

John 3:16? I’ll have to check that one out… but seriously, it was not my intention to say any disagreement with Warren was an attack. What I was addressing was the ADM (and at times Pastorboy) tactic of adding additional guilt.

Disagreeing with Warren about working alongside non-Christian organizations is fine – it’s a strategy and tactic disagreement. I disagree with a lot of Warren says and does.

But Pastorboy wrote this:

Look, I work with all of the above groups. But when I am working with them, my work is to proclaim the Gospel to them, not work hand in hand with them as though somehow the great God I serve cannot help me feed, clothe, and cure the people of the world without the help of those in false religions!

Pastorboy extends guilt to Warren by adding something he has no way of knowing – that Warren thinks somehow “the great God I serve cannot help me feed, clothe, and cure the people of the world without the help of those in false religions!

If you have used careful analysis, which I would agree is your norm, then my comments do not apply to you.

304   Neil    
January 2nd, 2009 at 11:56 am

…and my call (cf. comment 298) was to say: Let’s make sure we are addressing what people actual say and believe, not some additional stuff we have added… which is most often a caricature/straw man that is easy to address.

305   Pastorboy    http://crninfo.wordpress.com
January 2nd, 2009 at 11:59 am

“the great God I serve cannot help me feed, clothe, and cure the people of the world without the help of those in false religions!”

He may not say it…but demonstrates it by his actions. Kinda a Maciavellian end justifies the means kind of thing.

306   Bo Diaz    
January 2nd, 2009 at 12:02 pm

He may not say it…but demonstrates it by his actions. Kinda a Maciavellian end justifies the means kind of thing.

Then I suppose you demonstrate how weak the God you serve is that he can’t lead everyone into truth everytime you link to a secular news source.

307   Phil Miller    http://pmwords.blogspot.com
January 2nd, 2009 at 12:13 pm

I think what Phil is pointing out is that the use of proof texting is a very modernist view of scripture. People use particular pieces of scripture as a ‘*BAM* got ya’ kind of way. The two or three lines are seen as a sort of 10 Commandments, this is exactly what it says and carries it out. But the scriptures weren’t produced by modernists, they require contemplation, and a fuller understanding of their function, and how they work, which doesn’t come from reading a single scripture and thinking that settles everything.

That’s basically true. I think the thing that’s frustrating to me, and it’s not just over this one issue, is when we try to “use” Scripture to prove how right we are. It seems that whenever we throw a passage up and are like, “take that!”, we are missing the point of Scripture.

If anything, God warns us over and over again that He is the only one fit to say He’s just and right.

I think the fact that we sit here and argue about whether or not it’s right for Warren to help the hungry and poor with little concern that there are a great number of people who are hungry and poor indicates that we all are somewhat guilty of missing the point.

308   Neil    
January 2nd, 2009 at 12:24 pm

He may not say it…but demonstrates it by his actions. Kinda a Maciavellian end justifies the means kind of thing. – PB

It is one thing to say “It appears to me that he thinks…” and quite another to say “He thinks…”

309   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 2nd, 2009 at 12:51 pm

“In the end, some of may be right and some may be wrong. We could all be wrong. By that point, I doubt many of us will care that much.”

There is much wrong with that “laissez-faire” type of doctrinal attitude. I believe I have shown my credentials for not using harsh tactics or even suggesting all issues are of the same importance, however this issue remains at the core of the gospel and is heretical in the extreme.

It changes the gospel, it ignores much Scripture, it gives false hope, it creates a false caricature of God, it removes any consequences for sin, and in a very real and tangible way it presents a very different religion than is generall recognized as Christianity.

So the “some wrong – some right” may apply to a host of tangential issues, but to more than hint at universal salvation is dangerous, unbiblical, and counter productive to the gospel of Jesus Christ.

I am baffled at the seeming indifference by some concerning this issue. What issue does float people’s boats? Movies? Drinking? Women pastors? ADM harshness? All legitimate in their time, however universalism is of paramount importance and should be strongly and openly rejected and confronted.

310   John Hughes    
January 2nd, 2009 at 1:06 pm

Bo: (scriptures) they require contemplation, and a fuller understanding of their function, and how they work, which doesn’t come from reading a single scripture and thinking that settles everything.

My point Bo.

311   Phil Miller    http://pmwords.blogspot.com
January 2nd, 2009 at 1:08 pm

There is much wrong with that “laissez-faire” type of doctrinal attitude. I believe I have shown my credentials for not using harsh tactics or even suggesting all issues are of the same importance, however this issue remains at the core of the gospel and is heretical in the extreme.

It changes the gospel, it ignores much Scripture, it gives false hope, it creates a false caricature of God, it removes any consequences for sin, and in a very real and tangible way it presents a very different religion than is generall recognized as Christianity.

Well, first of all, I’m not advocating a “laissez-faire” attitude toward doctrine at all. All I’m advocating is a moratorium on this specific issue since it seems everyone involved is rather entrenched in their positions.

Also, I don’t believe Chad said there was no consequence for sin. I believe presenting it as Hell is the only consequence for sin can be quite detrimental to the Gospel as well – people tend to think they can live like they want now, and ask forgiveness later.

312   John Hughes    
January 2nd, 2009 at 1:15 pm

There is a vast (and significant) difference between the concepts of “proof texting” and the recitation of Scriptures related to a recurrent Biblical “theme”. When one uses Scripture to back up an argument they are not necessarily “proof texting” by definition.

313   John Hughes    
January 2nd, 2009 at 1:17 pm

people tend to think they can live like they want now, and ask forgiveness later.

– See “Christian Universalism”. ;-)

314   John Hughes    
January 2nd, 2009 at 1:19 pm

I’m advocating is a moratorium on this specific issue

Rocks, paper, sizzors anyone? :-)

315   Rick Frueh    http://http?//followingjudahslion.com
January 2nd, 2009 at 1:24 pm

Discussing universalism seemed to be a moratorium in and of itself, a respite from conversations about the ADMs.

316   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
January 2nd, 2009 at 1:45 pm

There is a vast (and significant) difference between the concepts of “proof texting” and the recitation of Scriptures related to a recurrent Biblical “theme”. When one uses Scripture to back up an argument they are not necessarily “proof texting” by definition.

This is very true – “proof-texting” typically involves taking Scripture out of context for the purpose of eisegesis. While not always successful, one tactic I’ve found to help avoid ‘proof-texting’ is to read (and possibly include) the passages before and after the Scripture I wish to cite, to make sure that they do not render the smaller citation irrelevant or reveal it to be out of context.
______________

As for “Universalism”, I would prefer we stick to the OP, rather than diverting every topic to this subject…

I will go ahead and start a thread on the subject here in a few minutes, and I will ask that all concerned use that thread for the topic, rather than bringing it into every other topic.

Yes, Rick, I believe the topic is far more important to deal with than most of the day-to-day ADM’ish sort of stuff. I truly believe that Universalism, the Prosperity Gospel and hyper-systematic theology are the three grossest areas of perversion of the gospel within the church today, and ought not be tolerated as “alternative truths”…

…but I also understand that not everyone wants to bring these into every topic discussed, which is why I’m looking for some middle ground here…

317   Phil Miller    http://pmwords.blogspot.com
January 2nd, 2009 at 2:25 pm

I will go ahead and start a thread on the subject here in a few minutes, and I will ask that all concerned use that thread for the topic, rather than bringing it into every other topic.

I think the name of said thread should be “Hell is Full of Universalists” ;-)

318   Neil    
January 2nd, 2009 at 2:28 pm

Good idea Chris. I concur with your take (and that of Rick) regarding universalism. I also think it a good idea for this site to expand a bit and discuss issues ourselves.

Keeping the two streams (discussions of our own and discussion of the ADM persecution) separate will be key.

319   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
January 2nd, 2009 at 2:28 pm

Oops – sorry Phil – already posted it as “One (Universalism) Thread To Rule Them All”… too much LotR lately…

320   Neil    
January 2nd, 2009 at 2:29 pm

I think the name of said thread should be “Hell is Full of Universalists” ;-)

“…will be…” is probably more theologically accurate.