Upon further reflection I'm forced to agree with Pastor Ken Silva's new definition for the acronym "SBC" which I used to think stood for "Southern Baptist Convention.
Pastor Silva (who is himself an ordained SBC minister) has irrefutably demonstrated that with its ever deepening dive into secular culture, its dabbling in contemplative spiritualism, and its experimentation with Eastern Mysticism that a more accurate descriptor for the SBC is Slowly Becoming Catholic.
If they continue in the direction they're heading I suspect there will be many serious minded, Bible believing children of the Lord leaving the SBC as it apostatizes right along with the rest of the last days harlot professing churches.
Certainly the Lord preserves remnants of His own even - and especially! - under the direst of circumstances, and I pray that those who remain faithful to the Lord of Hosts within the rapidly apostatizing SBC will hold fast to their first love and magnify Him above the wood and stone idols of men which continue to set themselves up as objects of worship in direct competition with The One True Living and Most High God.
2 Kings 17:11-12
And there they burnt incense in all the high places, as did the heathen whom the LORD carried away before them; and wrought wicked things to provoke the LORD to anger: For they served idols, whereof the LORD had said unto them, Ye shall not do this thing.
Tuesday, July 31, 2007
Upon further reflection I'm forced to agree with Pastor Ken Silva's new definition for the acronym "SBC" which I used to think stood for "Southern Baptist Convention.
Posted by Coram Deo at 7:51 PM
I read a church billboard as I was traveling last week which said:
“Christianity…so easy a caveman can do it!”
I was appalled, shocked, angered, and dismayed all at the same time. I can honestly say that I’ve never seen so much heresy - dare I say blasphemy? - packaged into such a pithy and “culturally-relevant” sentence by an ostensibly Christian source.
Welcome to Laodicea!
Posted by Coram Deo at 7:27 PM
Apparently Smilin' Joel Osteen's intellectual firepower is roughly equivalent to that of a cap gun.
Inexplicably - yet humorously - he's decided that his former smash hit offering entitled "Your Best Life Now" ought to be followed up with an all new mega-hit in the making he's calling "Become A Better You". How (one might reasonably ask) could someone following Smilin' Joel's inspired instructions and living out their best life NOW possibly become even better?!?
I decided to publicly go out on a limb over at Slice of Laodicia where I came across this article and make a proclamation that Smilin’ Joel’s latest offering of spiritual pornography will come across to his average church-ianity readership as dazzling, engaging, and downright inspired!(albeit Satanically inspired)
Even now I can almost see the church-growth apostates dutifully waving Osteen’s unholy tome from their pulpits as the wretched hirelings spew forth the gospel according to Joel, no doubt much to the delight of their flocks of “itching ears” sheeple.
Posted by Coram Deo at 7:04 PM
Saturday, July 21, 2007
Symphony of Scripture has posted a You-Tube style defense of sodomy - I refuse to capitulate to the PC crowd and utilize the euphamisms "gay" or "homosexual" - produced by an openly practicing sodomite who is currently a hireling at Hillsong in Australia.
Anthony Venn-Brown, now a member of Hillsong Church in Waterloo Sydney, was the founder of Youth Alive NSW, and a former leader in the Assemblies of God. Apparently, before announcing to the church that he was a practicing homosexual he was a rather “popular preacher within the mega churches of Australia and overseas.”
Friends, I'm fed up with the enemy's relentless attack against the revealed truth of God and I'm sick of his abominable and disobedient children masquerading as children of light and quoting from the Holy Scriptures in order to defend or advance their detestable and corrupted lifestyles.
Since Mr. Venn-Brown is apparently such an ardent defender of practices not specifically condemned by Christ Himself during His earthly ministry, or which aren't variously denounced frequently enough or precisely enough - at least to him - to convince him that he's an abominable sinner, then let's explore his position to its logical conclusion.
Based on Mr. Venn-Brown's worldview God revealing His will "six times" in Scripture is insufficient evidence of God's will. Like a rebellious child he re-interprets God's clearly intended meaning to salve his cauterized conscience.
How many chances at obedience did God give Adam and EVE (as opposed Adam and STEVE) in the garden?
How many chances did He give Nadab & Abihu when they offered "strange fire" before Him?
How many chances did He give Ananias and Sapphira when they held back a portion and lied to the Holy Spirit?
The point is that when God says something ONCE we ought to listen and obey, period. The mere fact that He has repeated something SIX TIMES ought to serve as an object lesson that He Really, REALLY means it. How many times are enough times? How many ways are enough ways? How precise must His language be?
Mr. Venn Brown throws out all the usual red herrings and utilizes the typical sleight of hand trickery designed to prey on the true Christian's sense of fairness and love for his fellow man. The homosexual movement is savvy and understands marketing even better than Rick Warren! They know how to manipulate basic emotions and how to pervert and twist their concept of "love" - so called - to make it seem as though they're being repressed or held back from something as basic as enjoying a normal love life with the partner of their choice.
They're not. Don't be decieved.
In fact, if one puts any stock in exhaustive studies, they're apparently enjoying a brisk love life with hundreds of partners throughout their lives, and in doing so rampantly infecting others and being infected themselves with myriads of sexually transmitted diseases, thereby "receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet".
Friends, just because Christ Himself speaking in red letters or other passages of scripture don't repeatedly warn in the most explicit terms and provide an exhaustive list of activities in which mankind shouldn't engage such as homosexuality, "fisting", child molestation, incest, bestiality, orgies, and every other perversion in between doesn't mean man is free to do whatever isn't specifically and repeatedly forbidden. In point of fact the Bible DOES mention most of these activities and in every case clearly condemns them, but obviously not enough times or in strong enough language to satisfy some people. By inference we see that God is HOLY and we are challenged to "be Holy as He is holy". Those who are disobedient and want to use Christianity as a "get out of hell free" card corrupt the plain teaching of scripture to justify themselves before men, yet they stand guilty and condemned before God Almighty.
Becoming holy is only possible when a Christian is given a new spirit and is made a new creation before God. The Christian is empowered by God to break free from the patterns of sin and death and to no longer be a slave to sin. The true Christian no longer walks in open sin and rebellion against God and His Word, but humbly and obediently submits to His authority in all things. Jesus Christ is the "LORD of all". That pretty well sums up His dominion.
And while He is truly and actually LORD OF ALL, He will permit the heathen to rage and laughs them to derision, for one day every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. Those who know Him as Lord and Savior will enter into His glory forever, and those who have merely paid him lip service or rejected Him outright will suffer eternal punishment in hellfire and damnation forever.
Mr. Venn-Brown ought to heed the admonition of scripture instead of being an apologist for abomination.
Posted by Coram Deo at 7:19 AM
Friday, July 20, 2007
We keep hearing from evangelical strategists and savvy church leaders that Christians need to be more tuned into contemporary culture.
You have no doubt heard the arguments: We need to take the message out of the bottle. We can’t minister effectively if don’t speak the language of contemporary counterculture. If we don’t vernacularize the gospel, contextualize the church, and reimagine Christanity for each succeeding generation, how can we possibly reach young people? Above all else, we have got to stay in step with the times.
Those arguments have been stressed to the point that many evangelicals now seem to think unstylishness is just about the worst imaginable threat to the expansion of the gospel and the influence of the church. They don’t really care if they are worldly. They just don’t want to be thought uncool.
That way of thinking has been around at least since modernism began its aggressive assault on biblical Christianity in the Victorian era. For half a century or more, most evangelicals resisted the pragmatic thrust of the modernist argument, believing it was a fundamentally worldly philosophy. They had enough biblical understanding to realize that “friendship with the world is enmity with God. Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God” (James 4:4).
But the mainstream evangelical movement gave up the battle against worldliness half a century ago, and then completely capitulated to pragmatism just a couple of decades ago. After all, most of the best-known megachurches that rose to prominence after 1985 were built on a pragmatic philosophy of giving “unchurched” people whatever it takes to make them feel comfortable. Why would anyone criticize what “works”?
Whole churches have thus deliberately immersed themselves in “the culture”—by which they actually mean “whatever the world loves at the moment.” We now have a new breed of trendy churches whose preachers can rattle off references to every popular icon, every trifling meme, every tasteless fashion, and every vapid trend that captures the fickle fancy of the postmodern secular mind.
Worldly preachers seem to go out of their way to put their carnal expertise on display—even in their sermons. In the name of connecting with “the culture” they want their people to know they have seen all the latest programs on MTV; familiarized themselves with all the key themes of “South Park”; learned the lyrics to countless tracks of gangsta rap and heavy metal music; and watched who-knows-how-many R-rated movies. They seem to know every fad top to bottom, back to front, and inside out. They’ve adopted both the style and the language of the world—including lavish use of language that used to be deemed inappropriate in polite society, much less in the pulpit. They want to fit right in with the world, and they seem to be making themselves quite comfortable there.
Continue reading here.
Posted by Coram Deo at 7:44 AM
The problems with Ravi Zacharias International Ministries keep mounting.
Shane Trammel has posted an informative litany of questionable activities and provided a peek behind the doctrinal curtain of RZIM.
In the light of scripture one must reach the conclusion that at best Ravi Zacharias and his ministry are in a state of serious compromise, and at worst they are going (or have gone) apostate.
Below is the comment I left at Shane's blog regarding the current situation at RZIM:
Your analysis is spot on here, Shane.
One wants to cry out, “Say it ain’t so, Ravi!”, but his ecumenical pattern is clearly and irrefutably established.
Additionally whom one surrounds oneself with speaks volumes. Either Ravi has a lot of house cleaning to do within his ministry, or his hirelings and hangers-on are calculated and intentional employees.
The din of silence on these troubling subjects coming from Ravi’s ministry is deafening.
Posted by Coram Deo at 6:14 AM
Tuesday, July 17, 2007
by John Morris, Ph.D.
What if all life evolved from a common ancestor by means of gradual changes as Darwin suggested? What evidence would we expect to find?
Certainly we would expect to find the fossilized remains of the myriads of ancestral creatures which lived and died over the millenia. At least some of the intermediate forms would have been fossilized. Remains of many varieties of present creatures have been found, including some extinct varieties, but the true in-between forms bridging gaps still elude us. Abundant soft-bodied remains have been found, so the conditions for preservation would always somewhere have existed. Why can't we find those important fossils which document evolution?
We might also expect to find evolution still occurring today. Why does it seem to have stopped? Geologists think the present time is marked by rapid change; environments are changing, so why are living things not changing? They are unquestionably adapting, but this is not by acquiring new genetic traits as required by evolution. Mutations frequently occur, which damage existing genes, some more than others, but nowhere do we observe new genetic information arise by random mutation. Evolution of any basic type into another would require millions of innovative, helpful mutations which add new information to the genome, but these are nowhere to be seen. Instead of new types, we observe misfits and extinction, the opposite of evolution. Natural selection can only select between variants, it cannot act on its own to create novel types, and certainly is not an intelligent force driving innovation.
We would also expect to discover a universal trend in science which leads to more complexity in nature, paving the way for an increase in genetic content. Instead we discover the universal second law of science, which invariably points toward a degradation of quality in every duplication of information, such as in reproduction, and more randomness in every unguided process. The complexity of life forms is so unimaginably great that we must account for it, and random changes in the face of a universal law can hardly be the answer.
At the least we should find a mechanism for evolution firmly in place. Mutation and natural selection are often cited, but these are deteriorative and conservative, not innovative and thoughtful. A theory of everything which has no mechanism is a weak theory indeed.
Thus we do not find the expected evidence that evolution of basic types has taken place. Surely we can be excused for looking elsewhere.
Dr. John D. Morris is the President of the Institute for Creation Research.
Posted by Coram Deo at 7:55 PM
Monday, July 16, 2007
by Bob DeWaay
“Remember the former things long past, For I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is no one like Me. Declaring the end from the beginning And from ancient times things which have not been done, Saying, ‘My purpose will be established, And I will accomplish all My good pleasure.’” (Isaiah 46:9)
“[A]lso we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to His purpose who works all things after the counsel of His will.” (Ephesians 1:11)
In recent years, some evangelicals have rekindled an old controversy by asserting that God does not have exhaustive foreknowledge. That is to say that He does not know everything that is going to happen. This is an old controversy. For example, Jonathan Edwards devoted many pages of his famous book, A Careful and Strict Inquiry into the Modern Prevailing Notions of the Freedom of the Will, Which is Supposed to be Essential to Moral Agency, Virtue and Vice, Reward and Punishment, Praise and Blame (commonly known as Freedom of the Will for obvious reasons). Edwards wrote:
First, I am to prove, that God has an absolute and certain foreknowledge of the free actions of moral agents. One would think it should be wholly needless to enter on such an argument with any that profess themselves Christians: but so it is, God’s certain foreknowledge of the free acts of moral agents is denied by some that pretend to believe the Scriptures to be the Word of God; especially of late.
This was the situation in the eighteenth century. Edward’s work on this issue is profound and timeless. He supplies page after page of Scriptural proof that God foreknows the future choices of free moral agents.
In this article I shall respond to a recent challenge issued in the book God of the Possible by Gregory A. Boyd. He writes: “What is particularly sad about the current state of this debate is that Scripture seems to be playing a small role in it. Most published criticisms raised against the open view have largely ignored the biblical grounds on which open theists base their position.” If it is so that published criticisms do not interact with the specific Scriptures put forth to support the “open” position, then I shall make a contribution toward rectifying this. In this essay I will interact with several of Dr. Boyd’s key proof texts, though space does not permit dealing with all of them. I shall show that the passages cited, if taken in their Biblical context, do not prove Dr. Boyd’s assertion that God lacks knowledge of some of the future.
Continue reading The Foreknowledge of God here.
Posted by Coram Deo at 8:13 PM
Sunday, July 15, 2007
What’s with Lilly popping up everywhere? I’m not talking about pretty flowers, I'm talking about the Lilly Endowment. At first glance, it might smell like roses. But if you look closely at all the things Lilly supports, you will begin to notice a skunk cabbage odor.
Read here for more.
Below is the comment I left on the thread:
Coram Deo said...
In my humble opinion there's really no need for a conspiracy theory, evil is simply going about its usual business in the typical mundane ways.
Through the years Holly-weird has spiced evil up and made it seem more clever, diabolical, and flashy than it really is, hence we (Americans) tend to enjoy a good conspiracy.
Evil is more like a boring job, or maybe cancer. It predicably goes about doing the same things in the same ways over and over.
Human governments, Lilly, organized religions, their common denominator is a bloated bureaucratic man-centered system, and evil is right at home in such an environment.
Regarding Youth Specialties, well they're a veritable who's who of mystical contemplatives and outright heretics. Beware.
Sat Jul 14, 06:21:00 PM PDT
Posted by Coram Deo at 2:24 PM
Saturday, July 14, 2007
I have it on good authority that these "Praise Ponies" are just the beginning! The next generation of Praise Ponies will be equipped with smart chips that will allow them to have interfaith dialogue with Ponies of different faith traditions!
I'm so excited! I can't wait to buy the Ecumenical Mega Pack!
HAT TIP: A Little Leaven
Posted by Coram Deo at 7:10 AM
The reaction to Pope Benedict's characterization of Protestants as not really belonging to the "true Church" set off a wave of global upheaval:
Evangelicals burned the pope in effigy in the U.S.
Catholic cathedrals were burned down in Europe.
Catholic missionaries were attacked in Asia.
Catholic Bibles were thrown on a bonfire in Africa.
Protestants kidnapped priests and nuns in Latin America and held them for ransom.
Threats on the life of the pope poured in from around the world.
You saw all this on the news, right? Oh, you didn't? You mean non-Catholic Christians did not rise up in anger and violence when insulted by the pope?
Why is that?
Continue reading here to find out.
Posted by Coram Deo at 6:08 AM
Wednesday, July 11, 2007
There is no title more fitting for the foremost blasphemer currently living on the planet Earth, the ultimate blind leader of the blind, the vilest false shepherd sitting in the most corrupted office in existance, the Pontificus Maximus of the harlot church of Rome.
Where is today’s Martin Luther?
Where is our Calvin?
Who will stand up and speak boldly before the so-called Vicar of Christ and reason with him by the Holy Scriptures before God and man proving once and for all that the church which he leads is founded upon the very gates of hell, and that he himself is of his father the devil?
With the dearth of sound doctrine and “unity at all costs” mantra that’s largely seduced the modern American professing church it’s becoming clearer than ever that all ecumenical roads lead to Rome.
Yet Luther left no doubt where he stood concerning the Papacy when he wrote, “This teaching [of the supremacy of the pope] shows forcefully that the Pope is the very Antichrist, who has exalted himself above, and opposed himself against Christ, because he will not permit Christians to be saved without his power, which, nevertheless, is nothing, and is neither ordained nor commanded by God. This is, properly speaking, to exalt himself above all that is called God. . . . The Pope, however, prohibits this faith, saying that to be saved a person must obey him” (Smalcald Articles, II, IV, 10-12).
Remember the reformation!
Posted by Coram Deo at 8:49 PM
But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die. (Genesis 2:17)
And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: (Genesis 3:4)
It's easy to play "Monday morning quarterback" and point out what ought, or ought not to have been done during "the big game". In hindsight we can see which plays were destined to go down in history as great bungling misadventures, and which plays would have resulted in a big win, had they simply been properly executed.
I think this is often the case with man's fall in the garden of Eden. From our modern day vantage point we tend to look back disparagingly on Adam and Eve and slap our collective foreheads in disbelief asking: "WHY did they do THAT?"
Yet in the light of scripture it's clear that any of us would have done the exact same thing because in our natural state we're just like them; spiritually defective and inclined towards sinful disobedience.
Happily God wasn't content to leave us alone in this state. Instead He entered our world as Jesus Christ, lived a perfect and sinless life, made atonement for our transgressions, and paid our sin debt completely thereby fully and eternally reconciling to the Father all who believe on the Son. This was done in order that we might have right standing before The One True Living God by Christ's righteousness which is imputed to sinful - yet contrite and repentant - men through grace by faith.
This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief. (1 Timothy 1:15)
Posted by Coram Deo at 4:15 AM
Monday, July 9, 2007
by Andrew A. Snelling, Ph.D.
The central question of Christianity, and of history itself, is: Who is Jesus Christ? Indeed, the Bible makes it clear that, whether we recognize Him now or not, all must one day stand before God and answer that question.
Jesus Christ the Creator
"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by Him; and without Him was not any thing made that was made. . . . And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth" (John 1:1-3, 14). Paul reminds us: "For by Him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by Him, and for Him: And He is before all things, and by Him all things consist" (Colossians 1:16-17).
Jesus the Word (Greek, logos), the ultimate communication from God, is declared to have been, and still is, the Creator of the universe and everything in it. When He came to this earth and laid aside His heavenly glory He didn't lay aside His power. He was fully human. He suffered weariness and fell asleep in a boat. He suffered pain on the cross. He was tested in the wilderness but without sin. But at the same time He never ceased to be the Creator. How do we know that? Because of the miracles He performed to convince people that He was who He claimed to be, the Creator.
Continue reading Who Is Jesus Christ? A Challenge to Christians here
Posted by Coram Deo at 9:02 PM
Sunday, July 8, 2007
I thought of a new word tonight.
Theohedonism - the·o·he·don·ism [thee-oh-heed-n-iz-uhm]: the belief that God maintains man's personal happiness and temporal contentment at the very top of His list of eternal priorities as evidenced by the conviction that ever increasing wealth and personal substance are indicators of God's "blessing" on - and tacit approval of - one's life irrespective of objective obedience to the demands of Christ as revealed in The Holy Bible or personal conduct of any type. Conversely a lack of material wealth and/or personal substance is considered as evidence of God's curse or the lack of proper utilization or application of "faith".
I plan to add this word to the lexicon of descriptors for the hireling, wolves-in-sheep's-clothing "leadership" and broad path - itching ears adherents of the word-faith, “name it and claim it”, “blab it and grab it”, “Gawd has a wunnerful plan fer yer life”, man-centered, Devil Driven, Seeker Sensitive, hell-spawned, bloodless, sinless, sugar coated, "I'm okay, you're okay", demonic false doctrine of the post-modern, emergent, apostate, contemplative, New Age, mystical, ecumenical, professing, corrupted, harlot last days Circus Church of Laodicea which abounds within today's modern American form of Church-ianity
Now I'll use it in a sentence: "The breathtaking displays of theohedonism consistently demonstrated by the likes of Benny Hinn, Paul Crouch, and Kenneth Copeland appall Coram Deo and cause him to cry out, 'How long, oh Lord?!?'".
Posted by Coram Deo at 9:25 PM
This seems to be the question certain American evangelical "leaders" - so called - are asking themselves these days about the cool relationship between American style Church-ianity and "the religion of peace". With this peace and love PR problem in mind they're apparently working hard to cozy up to the jihadist enabling leadership of several Middle Eastern nations as reported by Jonathan Falwell, son of the late Jerry Falwell, at World Net Daily.
One has to wonder about the leadership ability and discernment of a man when he announces ex post facto:
On Monday, July 2, I attended what I can only pray may become a historic meeting. Several weeks ago, I received a call about attending a meeting at the Egyptian Embassy in Washington, D.C. I was told this meeting would be hosted by the ambassador from Egypt and might be attended by representatives of other Arab nations, as well as by 10-15 pastors, evangelists and Christian media representatives.
My interest stirred, I agreed to attend the meeting even though I was not quite sure of its purpose.
Eh? I can only wonder who the cryptic phone call was from and why Mr. Falwell was too sheepish to ask any questions about "the purpose" of the meeting prior to making his decision attend.
Reading on we find that that he joined himself with a veritable who's who of spiritual snake-oil salesmen from The Blasphemy Network in order to sit down at the bargaining table with a delegation of Mohammedian politicians:
When we arrived at the Embassy, we were greeted by Evangelist Benny Hinn and introduced to several other pastors, evangelists, Christian TV producers and representatives of Christian organizations. Among them were Gordon Robertson of the 700 Club, Paul Crouch Jr. of Trinity Broadcasting Network, Christian lobbyist Ralph Reed, Richard Cizik of the National Association of Evangelicals, Vernon Brewer of WorldHelp and several others.
Within a period of no more than 10 minutes, the ambassadors from Algeria, Morocco, Libya, Kuwait, Yemen, Iraq, Bahrain and the ambassador from the Arab League of Nations all arrived. I now realized that this meeting was far more than a social gathering. [EDITOR'S NOTE: One has to wonder precisely what it was he was expecting prior to this "Damascus Road" experience - "More tea and crumpets Mr. Falwell?"] Soon thereafter, we sat down at a large table – evangelicals all on one side and Arab representatives on the other, about 24 of us – for lunch.
Maybe my interpretation of Mr. Falwell's article is all wrong; maybe it was a very productive and spiritually profound meeting that glorified the Risen Savior, Jesus Christ. But in reading and re-reading the material he posted I couldn't find even a faint glimmer to suggest the entire event amounted to anything other than a colossal waste of time which served only to further embolden the false religious beliefs of the Mohammedians in attendance. Honestly, if true born-again Christians can't take Benny Hinn and Paul Crouch seriously - and we can't - then how can we expect deceived idolaters steeped in a false religion to receive their witness for Christ?
The sad fact is that this article serves as yet another example the pathetic story so often repeated regarding the self-anointed spokesmen of American style Church-ianity; to wit the headline ought to have read "Another Opportunity Missed!", or "Defeat for Christ Once Again Snatched from the Jaws of Victory!", or perhaps simply "Compromise!" would have been a sufficient title.
With friends like these Christ doesn't need enemies.
Posted by Coram Deo at 8:02 AM
Saturday, July 7, 2007
And there were also sodomites in the land: and they did according to all the abominations of the nations which the LORD cast out before the children of Israel. (1 Kings 14:24)
Some Christians had a wonderful Independence Day with their families, some no doubt took in a movie or went to the lake, or participated in a community event. Still others probably took their perennial role as "Grill Master" and whipped up some delicious burgers, dogs, brats and steaks. The Christian liberty enjoyed in these United States is rightly seen as a double edged sword of sorts, a mixed bag if you will. On the one hand our nation's "freedom of religion" has allowed Christianity, in all its various forms, to flourish in this country. And on the other hand one of the unintended consequences of this "freedom" has been to produce a worldly, carnal, materialistic professing church that has grown spiritually fat, soft, and lazy in the absence of persecution. Just as when a wild animal is domesticated and no longer harbors its acute natural fear being killed and eaten, the professing church has become dull of hearing, seeing, and discerning the rampant and deadly spiritual deception of the destroyer within the flock.
Now don't get me wrong, I'm not taking the position that Christians ought to seek persecution as some sort of badge of honor, nor am I contending that God cannot or does not in some cases sovereignly choose to protect His own from persecution, but the fact remains that persecution often sifts the children of God from the children of Baal. This is because a genuine readiness to suffer thins out the number of true Christians from the ranks of professing believers; it eliminates those whose walk goes no further than a cheap profession.
And in case you're wondering how some Christians spent Independence Day in the Land of the free, take a look at how the gospel is being received in New York, Kansas, and Florida in these last days: World Net Daily reports "Now praying gets 7 Christians arrested - Cops call holding Bibles while lying prostrate 'disturbing peace'".
Friends I mentioned in a post just a few brief days ago how the United States is mere inches from tyranny. Could more evidence be required? How much longer can it be before preaching the whole counsel of God is considered a "hate crime"? In my opinion we're witnessing nothing less the final act in the plan of the ages, the setting of the stage for the rise of anti-christ and the soon return of our Lord Jesus Christ in great glory and power. No man knows that day nor hour, but may we who are called by His name look up, pray up, and speak up for His imminent return.
Maranatha Lord Jesus!
UPDATE: It looks like we can add Maryland to our Independence Day Hall of Shame.
Posted by Coram Deo at 6:31 AM
Friday, July 6, 2007
Slice of Laodicea has linked to an almost unbelievably cavalier video clip from "The Orchard Church Community" which mocks water baptism; one of only two sacraments that the Lord Jesus Christ commanded that we as believers observe until His return.
Click here to read the Slice post and find the link to the video clip. The post is entitled When Baptism is Made to be Blasphemous and I truly couldn't have thought of a better title if I'd tried.
Below is the comment I left in the meta over at Slice:
The breathtaking arrogance and lack of humility demonstrated in that repulsive clip is simply shocking.
There is clearly no fear of God in those false teachers and absolutely zero respect for the sharing in His death, burial, and resurrection which are signified in water baptism.
The church “leadership” represented in that piece is wallowing in the bowels of perversion, deception, and shame. May God have mercy and draw them to repentance lest they stand condemned before Him in righteous judgment.
Posted by Coram Deo at 7:23 PM
Thursday, July 5, 2007
Or: "Why The LDS/Mormon Church Will NEVER Be Part Of The Body Of Christ"
An answer to the efforts of people like Greg Johnson (Standing Together), Richard Mouw (Fuller Theological Seminary), Craig Hazen (Biola University), Ravi Zacharias (RZIM) and many others who are attempting to forge some kind of "Evangelicals And Mormons Together" alliance out of thin air.
by Sandy Simpson, 10/26/05
There has been a continuous effort, since the Evangelicals And Catholics Together (ECT) debacle, to widen the definition of what Christianity is by those mentioned above, among many others. The New Apostolic Reformation (NAR) has an agenda to try to carry out the unbiblical mandates of the false apostles like C. Peter Wagner to "overthrow" the governments of the world and take over everything, which also means they have to manufacture "revival" where there is none and never has been. So in order to fulfill the false prophecies of the false prophets of the NAR, people involved in this heretical movement, like Richard Mouw, are waving their wands over the Mormons and dubbing them "Christian" to the consternation and embarrassment of Christians who understand the teachings of Mormonism that they cannot and will never give up.
So let's put this whole sham of building bridges with the Mormons, on the way to another "ECT" type document, to rest for good. The Mormons will NEVER give up their "sacred texts". Here are quotes to show how they view the Book of Mormon and Joseph Smith from a few of their web sites. Notice that the Mormons don't just have two "sacred" scriptures, the have four.
Continue reading this important article here
Posted by Coram Deo at 6:55 PM
Wednesday, July 4, 2007
The Watcher's Lamp warns of the "Mystical Convergence of the Purpose Driven, Seeker Sensitive & Emergent" movements as they lead countless thousands (millions?) of deceived souls down the broad way that leads to destruction:
"The tip of the mystical iceberg that is Youth Specialties has flags planted on it by Saddleback Church, Willow Creek and the Emergent movement.
A review of some of the guest speakers for this year's National Youth Workers Convention reveals the Who's Who of the mystical & contemplative..."
It should come as no surprise to those who have kept up with the pernicious activities of the Purpose Driven Pope - "Pastor" Rick Warren, the ecumenical Seeker-Sensitive Circus Church ringleader Bill Hybels of Willow Creek, or the neo-liberal ooze that comprises the emergent cult, that this unholy trinity should seek to come together in order to corrupt the young and impressionable with their brand of demonic faith.
A quick peek beneath the thin veneer of Christianity that these groups have applied to themselves demonstrates they are not of Christ. The common thread which runs through the Purpose Driven, Seeker Sensitive, and Emergent camps is their tolerance for and/or downright embrace of the ungodly.
Their man-centered theology can be summed up as "God loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life. He's provided everything and done all He can, but you still lack one thing, you just need to 'follow Jesus' to be complete".
And let's be honest here, this sort of easy-believism is appealing to our carnal nature. It sounds great! "I get to hold on to my pet sins, hang out with the old crowd, go where I want to go and do what I want to do because God loves me and I'm following Jesus!" Sadly these spiritual snake-oil salesmen package and present the gospel as though it costs nothing, but in truth it costs EVERYTHING:
Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven. Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. And a man's foes shall be they of his own household. He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me. He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it.
As we see from the above verse Jesus doesn't give even the slightest indication that belief is easy or that becoming his disciple is a cost-free and painless process, quite the opposite. To claim otherwise is to present another gospel, a cheapened gospel that seeks to diminish the hard demands of Christ in order to make the case that you simply need to "add Jesus" to your current lifestyle. Yet according to scripture to apprehend Christ is to give up ourselves completely, totally, and without reservation. This is a sovereign, God-inspired act which can be summed up as obedience. Godly obedience is foreign - even anathema - to our natural, autonomous fleshly nature. Yet we should note that Jesus Christ's earthly ministry was marked by perfect obedience to the Father which culminated in His obedience on the cross.
There is no such thing as a disobedient Christian. Certainly Christians can and do sin - frequently - but their character is marked by contrition for sin and the seeking of forgiveness as opposed to continuing in patterns of unbroken and remorseless sin. This is evidence of unbelief and disobedience no matter how long you've been a member of your local church, how many mission trips you've gone on, how faithfully you've tithed, how many Sunday School classes you've taught, or how many sermons you've preached.
The lesson here is that it does not matter what creeds are confessed, how much scripture has been memorized or what "good things" a person has done, the one who practices lawlessess (disobedience) will be excluded from heaven. He or she is an unbeliever in danger of eternal damnation:
Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. (Matthew 7:21-23)
This is a very strong admonition and should serve as a stark warning to those who profess to know Jesus Christ, and who undertake to preach and teach His Word. It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God (Heb. 10:31), and those who corrupt His Word and mingle it with the uncleanness of humanism, mysticism, and paganism and then feed this spiritual poison to their flocks ought to be terrified and ashamed and fall on their faces in repentantance for their grievous error before the Lord of Hosts, the Infinite Creator and Judge of the universe.
In the passage from Matthew quoted above the Lord gives us a glimpse of the coming judgment of those who profess to know Him and who protest that they did many wonderful things for Him. Sadly, tragically, their words and hearts are empty and Christ will turn them away to everlasting destruction. This passage is often perplexing and deeply unsettling, particularly for professing Christians. The poor condemned souls in this passage clearly aren't pagans, nor are they making the claim that they served a different god by mistake; they're professing they know Jesus and have served Him. They recount before Him the many wonderful deeds they performed in His name.
But the problem with their professions of faith and good works is that they are empty claims of human achievement. The "many" who are turned away in divine judgment are the same we met in Matthew 7:13 who took "the broad way which leads to destruction". It's no mystery what's happening here. Jesus repeatedly warned of the self-righteousness of the Pharisees and stated unequivocally that their brand of righteousness, in other words human righteousness or self-righteousness, was not akin saving faith; the righteousness that comes from God alone and is imputed by His son. The condemned souls in Matthew 7:21-23 represent people who trusted in themselves and the things they did - supposedly in Jesus name - to earn them a place in heaven, but faith doesn't work this way, and never has. Man cannot earn God's favor through external works apart from living out righteousness based on true faith:
For Moses describeth the righteousness which is of the law, That the man which doeth those things shall live by them. But the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down from above:) Or, Who shall descend into the deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.) But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach; That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. (Romans 10:5-10)
Once again we see this is the common theme shared among the Purpose Driven, Seeker Sensitive, and Emergent movements; they seek to sacrifice you and your children to the Moloch of lawless ungodliness. The enemy is no fool and he understands that corrupting the youth is his best hope to assure continued future apostasy and dilution of the faith. Satan is using these so-called "Christian leaders" as dupes and the wicked one is silently guiding their fleshly, carnal, humanistic programs to further his demonic goal of replacing the pure Gospel of Jesus Christ with another gospel, a "culturally relevant" model of hell's own design.
Friends let's not be deceived. When the Barna polls and statisticians tell us of the overwhelming "Christianity" of the United States and report there are more than a billion "Christians" living in the world one has to wonder about the broad way and the "many" who will stand before the Lord one awful day and hear those fateful words, "I never knew you, depart from me". "Many" who identify themselves with Christ will be turned away by Him in judgment. It's no doubt that it was with this in mind that the inspired Apostle Paul challenges us in 2 Corinthians 13:5 to "Test yourselves to see if you are in the faith; examine yourselves!" In fact Christians are commanded to self-examination each time we partake of the Lord's Supper (1 Corinthians 11:28)!
Let us not rest on our human works or on our intellectual assent to the truth claims of Christ, but let us fall on our faces before the Lord in humble obedience that He might justify and sanctify us by His power and mercy. If our lives as professing Christians don't reveal growth in the grace and righteousness and holiness that flows only from the Throne of God established in our hearts then we need to examine the reality of our faith in the light of scripture.
And it is under careful examination in the light of scripture we find that "the writing is on the wall" for the Purpose Driven, Seeker Sensitive and Emergent movements, and the message is clear: MENE, MENE, TEKEL, UPHARSIN. Those who are within the harlot churches which represent the scarlet woman ought to heed the admonition of scripture to "come out of her" and flee to Christ.
I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith. (Romans 12:1-3)
Posted by Coram Deo at 7:36 AM
"Fret not thyself, it tendeth only to evil doing." (Psalm 37:8, R.V.)
Fretting means getting out at elbows mentally or spiritually. It is one thing to say "Fret not," but a very different thing to have such a disposition that you find yourself able not to fret. It sounds so easy to talk about "resting in the Lord" and "waiting patiently for Him" until the nest is upset - until we live, as so many are doing, in tumult and anguish, is it possible then to rest in the Lord? If this "don’t" does not work there, it will work nowhere. This "don’t" must work in days of perplexity as well as in days of peace, or it never will work. And if it will not work in your particular case, it will not work in anyone else’s case. Resting in the Lord does not depend on external circumstances at all, but on your relationship to God Himself.
Fussing always ends in sin. We imagine that a little anxiety and worry are an indication of how really wise we are; it is much more an indication of how really wicked we are. Fretting springs from a determination to get our own way. Our Lord never worried and He was never anxious, because He was not "out" to realize His own ideas; He was "out" to realize God’s ideas. Fretting is wicked if you are a child of God.
Have you been bolstering up that stupid soul of yours with the idea that your circumstances are too much for God? Put all "supposing" on one side and dwell in the shadow of the Almighty. Deliberately tell God that you will not fret about that thing. All our fret and worry is caused by calculating without God.
(Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest, 135,136)
HAT TIP: Christian Research Net
Posted by Coram Deo at 7:29 AM