Diaprax: How Most Christians Are Deceived Today And Become Blind To Truth

If, for example, you are attending a “church” that is taking or has taken polls, surveys, and feasibility studies to “grow” itself (the same method that is used in marketing to “make customers,” i.e. the same method used by Total Quality Management in the workplace, Common Core in education, etc.), it is trusting in the opinions of men, making man’s “feelings” and “thoughts” its head rather than the Lord God and His Word.  The dialectic lie, i.e. the great deception is that the “church” can “grown” itself (basing fellowship upon mans relationship with man—“and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ.”  1 John 3:1).  The truth is the Lord only adds to the fellowship of believers by His Word being preached and taught as is and accepted as is and obeyed as is, i.e. un-tampered by “human reasoning,” i.e. un-perverted by the opinions of men.  The minister of the Lord feeds the sheep with the Word of God.  He does not contaminate it with the opinions of men as the wolf in sheep skin does. (Dean Gotcher, from www.authorityresearch.com)

So this is about the “how” and less about the “why” as to why so many Christians are being led down the wrong path and are either accepting the false as being true, or worse, are behaving in an “I know nothing, I see nothing” state of mind.  The “why” can be difficult to know, but we do know it is happening, and that is what is frightening.  Have you heard of the term “diapraxis?”

What is diapraxis? What is the Hegelian dialectic process? As best as I can explain, it is a dangerous process which is used  over and over again by many false teachers and corrupt pastors to convince undiscerning Christians that there is nothing wrong with what they are teaching them, and that perhaps there can be two differing points of view that can live right alongside each other in harmony.  It is a way of teaching that says we can get along fine and accept each other’s seemingly contradictory belief systems.  Dean Gotcher explains that the dialectic process means that “truth must be treated as an opinion.”  For example, the battle going on now between theistic evolutionists and Biblical creationists is a good example.  Many in the Nazarene denomination and other denominations make the argument that we can hold to either belief system and still have harmony within the church.  Many of these folks have been victims of diaprax, and they don’t even know it.

In this short video excerpt from Dean Gotcher’s seminar on diapraxis, he gives a brief explanation of the term, and also his testimony of how he managed to escape the dangers of worldly thinking and reasoning, and his return to complete trust in the Bible.  I encourage you to go the links at the end and watch his full seminar on this important topic.  It is probably the primary way that today’s false teachers and corrupt pastors are bringing great harm to the church.  Instead of standing completely on the full authority of God’s word, many foolish Christians are being swayed to “get along”, to seek “unity”, and to not cause division, and these diapraxers know exactly what they are doing.

I recall from the past five years what may be a classic example of diapraxis.  I recall one of them particularly, which is a bit frightening, and it is something that probably happens all the time to many undiscerning Christians, even longtime “mature’ Christians.  You see, I believe in what God says, and that there is no other option for me.  Some however are easily swayed by the words of man, and are led to compromise their faith in God and what He says.

It was my first public presentation on the emerging church, which happened in 2009.  I was invited to speak by the pastor at my current Nazarene church, (since retired), and whom I consider to have been very bold and courageous for asking me to come.  I spoke to a crowd of about 150 people, including quite a few from various churches in the area.  After the presentation, I was approached by several people; some came to compliment me, others had some questions.

It was then that an older Christian from my former church came up to me.  He was full of encouragement, and expressed his appreciation for my taking a stand against false teaching.  I was, needless to say, happy to have his support and hear his encouraging words.  But I was shocked and dismayed, when less than six months later, to hear of what seemed to be a turnaround for this longtime respected Christian in the church.  At my former church one Sunday, my brother passed out copies of my not so well-received front page article from The Good News Today, which essentially was the same thing I talked about months earlier.  As my brother recounted to me later about his experience, he told me how that gentleman, who had acknowledged the truthfulness of what I spoke, now had changed his mind somehow.  His very words regarding my article were something like, “that belongs in the garbage.”  I believe that over those six months, he had been “diapraxed”.

What makes people change their minds like that?  This gentleman never once called me to explain why he changed his mind.  He may not even be aware that I know what he said that day.  Was he concerned for me, that I was now in error, and that what I taught that day was totally wrong?  If so, why could he not approach me and correct me as a fellow believer is encouraged to do from the word of God? Did he not care about my spiritual well being enough to try to convince me, with the word of God, where I was wrong?

This is just one small example of many.  Over the past five years, I have received testimony from many Christians about how their fellow believers seemingly have turned on them, even when they acknowledged that they spoke the truth.  Some of these who have turned against them, in spite of the truth, have probably been “diapraxed.”  They have been taught that it is better to get along rather than keep your convictions about the word of God.  It is a dangerous place to be, because many have remained to this day in that state of mind.

Have you been diapraxed?  Have you been taught to ignore the truth, in exchange for “unity” and “fellowship?”
Please keep this Scripture passage in mind: “13 For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. 14 And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. 15 Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works.  2 Cor. 11:13-15

I encourage you to bookmark these four sessions by Dean Gotcher and spend some time going through all of them.  It is very important in order to understand the mindset of the false teachers and how most of them operate.  Dean is the founder of Authority Research (http://authorityresearch.com/

and bases his work on the foundational reliability of Scripture.

Dean Gotcher’s seminar on diaprax:

Part 1 (1:13) : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DMTgxDbxa2g

Part 2 (1:12) : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OQGV04XqTls

Part 3: (1:10) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SHOg4bOD9tA

Part 4 (41 min): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zgxwaKhxs0Y

Pastors That Promote Evolution Need To Be Challenged

These things have I written unto you concerning them that seduce you. But the anointing which you have received of him abides in you, and you need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teaches you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it has taught you, you shall abide in Him. And now, little children, abide in Him; that, when He shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before Him at his coming. 1 John 2:26-28

The debate is over.  Ken Ham and Bill Nye the Science Guy.  For those who missed the debate about evolution, there will be a DVD of the entire debate available, and the debate is now online here (skip to the 13 min mark where it actually starts).  The online video has already had over 1.2 million views since last week.  I was perhaps most grateful to Ken Ham for the fact that several times in the debate, he was able to share the Gospel message, pointing to us what is most important. I was also thankful that folks like him and Dr. Purdom are faithfully defending God’s clear and unambiguous account in Genesis of how we were created.  My prayer is that God will use this event to move hearts and minds, bring people to the saving Gospel of Jesus Christ, help remove doubt and confusion in the minds of wavering Christians, and that He will rebuke those professing Christian leaders who are promoting this ungodly teaching.

I know, perhaps not many minds were not changed right away, and some minds may never change on this issue.  Yet, the biblical Christian knows that the theory of evolution is a farce.  Even a non-believer who looks at the evidence knows it is a farce.  It is unproven, it is full of holes, and many parts of it have been discredited over time, after many scientists were so sure about it.  Yet, the sad irony is that not only does Bill Nye reject the truth of the biblical account of creation, so do many pastors!  And this is one of the great dangers in our church today- pastors who deny the truth of Scripture, and you need to be warned about this.

It is very possible today that you could be under the leadership of a pastor who denies the historical accuracy and truthfulness of Genesis 1-11.  In fact, I would advise you to ask him what he does believe, if he has not made that clear yet.  If you believe what God has said in Scripture, and if you reject the godless theory of evolution, what does it say to you if you find out that your pastor accepts evolution?  Before and after the debate, I read various comments about Ken Ham at several “Christian” websites on the internet.  There is a certain disdain for Ken Ham, who has defended the biblical position and has written many articles exposing the godless teaching of evolution within the Nazarene denomination.

There is also a certain disdain for Nazarene pastors, and Christian pastors in general, who believe in the biblical account.  There is an elitist spirit about these critics of Bible believing Christians.  I saw this elitist spirit at General Assembly this year, as a pastor from New England, along with his friend, abruptly walked away from a conversation with me about evolution.  I was challenging them from a biblical perspective, and in the end, they would have none of that kind of talk in the conversation.  They wanted compromise, and they wanted me to accept the evolution position as a viable position.

As we have posted before, if you believe in evolution, then you have to reject several things taught in Scripture.

To a theistic evolutionist, he/she must believe that:

-Adam and Eve were not real historical figures as described in Genesis;

-Jesus was not truthful when he talked about Adam and Eve in a historical context;

-You reject God’s account in Genesis that He created everything in six days;

-You reject the ​truthfulness of the​ genealogical account of the Lord in the book of Luke, which includes Adam;

-The account of the first 11 chapters of Genesis is only allegory;

-You accept that death came into the world many years before any Adam and Eve, contradicting Romans 5:12 and its explanation of how sin and death came into the world;

-You pick and choose what you want to believe, instead of accepting God’s historical account at face value;

-You choose to use your own intellect and human reasoning and philosophy to validate the Bible, instead of letting the Bible validate itself;

-You reject the inerrancy and reliability of Scripture as the sole and final written authority for our faith and practice, and instead accept that the Bible has errors and is written deceptively.

Those pastors who are promoting the godless theory of evolution must be confronted.   If not, they will continue deceiving countless Christians without opposition.  They will sow the seeds of doubt in their minds, and soon, the floodgates will open for some, who will start doubting other parts of Scripture.  These pastors are the “corrupt shepherds” that were so aptly described by Walter Martin.  Some of them are the open theists as well, who believe that God cannot know all of the future.  They have swallowed hook line and sinker the religion of man, but the fact that they have been fooled cannot excuse them, because now they are teaching others about their godless ideas.

If you believe in evolution, then perhaps it is of no concern to you that your pastor might also.  But if you reject this godless idea, then isn’t it only fair to know where your pastor stands on this?  Go ahead, ask him, and politely ask for a straight answer on this issue.  Is it because you know more than your pastor, that you can challenge him?  No.  He has his theology degrees, but you have something better.  You have the word of God, and that is all you need to confront him with.

Related articles:

http://townhall.com/columnists/stevedeace/2014/02/08/lingering-questions-for-bill-nye-the-science-guy-n1790133/page/2

http://reformednazarene.wordpress.com/2013/04/04/prominent-nazarenes-reject-gods-word-and-promote-ungodly-evolution/

http://reformednazarene.wordpress.com/2013/05/24/what-they-believe/

http://reformednazarene.wordpress.com/2013/10/07/square-peg-nonsense-in-false-theology/

http://reformednazarene.wordpress.com/2013/05/30/responding-to-nazarenes-exploring-evolution/

http://reformednazarene.wordpress.com/2013/07/23/you-say-toe-may-toe-i-say-toe-mah-toe/

 

The Vacuousness of Arrogance

Ken Ham Bill Nye Debate

This coming Tuesday at 7 pm EST, you will have an opportunity to see a debate between Bill Nye, the Science Guy, and Ken Ham, president of Answers In Genesis.  The topic is evolution​, which is being promoted more and more by prominent leaders, pastors and theologians in the Church of the Nazarene, as well as other denominations.  Go to www.debatelive.org and register for the live streaming.  Invite some friends over, listen to this presentation of two diametrically opposing views, and decide for yourself.

The following article was written by my friend John Henderson and is related to that same topic.The Vacuousness of Arrogance

By John Henderson

“He knew not what to say, so he swore,” is supposed to have been stated by one of America’s founding fathers.  It goes to the point that human intelligence is painfully limited and incapable of going beyond its own limitations.  That is true of the genius and the moron, and most of us are somewhere in the middle of that.  Unfortunately, there is a tendency to puff up that lack with the hot air of pride.

I no longer debate irrationality (if I ever did) except to furnish information for those sincerely in search of truth.  When Mr. Obama recently closed his 2014 state of the union address by saying:  “The debate is over, climate change is real,” I felt no compulsion to respond with the specifics—actually lack of evidences—in that argument.  When atheistic evolutionists and phony creation evolutionists make their unfounded assertions because they reject the clear revelational truth of the Scriptures, I simply go back to the Bible and trust God that what He said is true.  It is not a blind trust, either.  I have seen God at work in the arenas of faith and have seen Him prove Himself over and over.

My reasoning is that I cannot debate a closed mind.  It is like digging a hole in a mud puddle.  Every shovelful removed is immediately filled with more mud.

Just the same, I think it important to address the system of logic that is used in most error, using evolutionism as an example.  Evolutionism claims that everything, especially “higher life” evolves from something before it—presumably something like a “lower order.”  Just how that order is decided is never explained.  If that reasoning is carried to its logical conclusion (and this is often presented as a creationist’s retort) there has to be a first cause.

If a first cause is identified (and evolutionists have yet to do that) they are still obligated by their own logic to explain how that first cause came to be.  After a while it becomes like trying to string popcorn while it is cooking and deciding which ones were to be first onto the string.

What evolutionists actually do is to haphazardly pick up at some assumed point and make assertions in both directions—all the while without observing or producing a shred of pure unadulterated evidence of change outside of adaptations that were pre-existing within a species.  All of their evidence is so thickly buttered with biased interpretations that it is like putting lipstick on a pig.

What I am saying is that they begin with an assumption and never give up on it regardless of the evidence or lack of evidence.  They willfully ignore the obvious for the fantasy.  The heavens declare God’s creative glory and they refuse to see it.  As someone has said, they cannot see the sun because the sun’s own brightness obscures it from natural view.

They cannot see it because the work of God is not understood by human intelligence.  We are limited to discovery only.  We are incapable of understanding and explaining origins.  It is not possible for our human intelligence to operate outside of our small boxes of discovering what already exists. We can only discover what already is. Forming or decrypting new things from nothing is not our privilege.  We only have what exists and that will explain God to us very well unless we decide we do not want to acknowledge God in our thoughts.  Then, we are no better off than trying to string together—in sequence—the exploded kernels in a pot of popcorn as it cooks.

There is one other area of intelligence that the natural mind cannot grasp.  It is in the spiritual realm.  It is possessed only by mankind (not animals) and can only be activated when the soul is in right relationship with Christ as Savior.  It is there that spiritual things are actually understood by the spiritual mind.  The carnal mind can never comprehend spiritual things because it is darkened by rebellion’s ignorance.  A blind man can stare his entire life at the mountains and valleys and never once see them.  He may declare they do not exist because he has never seen them.  It is not that they do not exist.  The man is blind and cannot see what is there before him.

Faith is the blind man’s taking the word of a friend that they exist.  There is a song we used to sing called “Beyond the Sunset.”  It is said to have been written by a blind man whose friend had described a sunset to him.  That man wrote about what can only be seen by those whose hearts are right with God.  The Christian can see way beyond the sunset into eternal realities and aside from the natural eye.

Truly, the pride of a man goes before his own fall.  He stumbles over the debris of his own failed logic especially when he must come face to face with the Creator—the real First Cause.  He pitifully stumbles through life thrashing indiscriminately about in the darkness as though he were all-wise, puffing hard to keep his own punctured ego inflated enough to give the appearance of substance until he exhausts all of his own unrenewable resources and finds himself as the nothing he always was, the nothing he made himself to be when he could have been all things in Christ.

After all of the smokescreen has dissipated, the evolutionists and anyone who believes and teaches error is left standing there still unable to offer anything as good as, let alone better than, the self-evident realities that God created all that exists and that all that exists was created by God.  His solutions fall far short of anything as reasonable and true as that: “The debate is over!  Creation by God is a fact!”  Truth is God’s alone!

“Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men.  For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called: But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;  And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: That no flesh should glory in his presence. But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord” (1 Corinthians 1:25-31).

If it is not possible for the natural mind to compete with the basest and most foolish things of nature (of which it is a part) so as to understand what they are teaching, I find it profoundly amazing that one could be so intoxicated with his own opinion and foolhardily overconfident as to assume he knows what God knows or even more so—or that anyone would believe his outrageous claims.  They become an affiliation of surreal dupes and clowns bent on self-destruction for the mere sake of self-destruction.

Dr. Gran’pa
(John Henderson)

Reaching Today’s Youth

By John Henderson

Life has spanned enough years for me to observe the different modes leaders in the church have used to reach the youth of our generation.  My wife and I are products of the youth outreach of our time.  There has been a noticeable change in the approach to reaching the young people from that time to this.

Even before our own time, there was the YMCA and YWCA.  Those were actually evangelistic arms of the church.  We have seen now that not only has evangelism ceased in them but any real semblance of Christ or Christianity exists except for smatterings of some sort of general morality.  Even that is not all that much emphasized.

We were exposed to Youth for Christ and came to Christ and grew spiritually under its banner.  Churches had Sunday evening youth services that have now gone from what they once were to being hardly noticeable, if at all. Not much is heard of YFC these days.  It, Campus Crusade for Christ, and others seem to have faded and some have taken on the identity and mission of the emergent church movement.

Somehow and gradually, the notion arose that assumed young people should be reached in their own sub-culture.  That sub-culture was largely identified by the worldly influences in vogue at the time, especially in the “music” of that sub-culture.  The choruses and gospel songs were soon replaced with rock-and-roll sounds that contained hints of being gospel in some way.  That was further enhanced by “worship” music set to shallow ditties that were justified because they somehow alluded to something Christian. Gone were the youth songs and choruses of the past that always supplemented the major hymns and songs of Christ and the entire shebang was replaced by this new music.

Music has always been a teacher of theology and so it still is.  It is just that the theology changed to suit the music or else the music was changed to reflect the new theology.  We may sometimes call it contemporary but is far from contemporary.  It is just rehashed out of the world into a veneer of gospel.

Frankly, we have it all wrong.  We shall never reach young people for Christ by giving them amended worldliness.  If nothing has changed over the years, it is the simplicity of the gospel.  It is like a beautiful girl and when we gaudily dress it up like a floozy, we ruin the beauty that is there by nature.  I have peered into areas used for youth activities and saw what resembled night clubs more than places for prayer.  Add to that the stage performances—and the stages themselves—and there is no doubt as to what is being learned.

We should be bringing our youth into environments that more resemble the church as it should be.  They should be exposed to learning the Bible and memorizing the Scriptures.  They should be trained in praying and in witnessing so that they can actually pray with a fellow young person until that person meets Christ in repentance and faith.  Their music doesn’t have to sound like it is from the Middle Ages but it should have the same depth of message in it that they should be hearing in regular church.  In other words, they should be in training for taking the leadership when they become responsible adults.  If they remain trained in shallowness that is what they will carry into the church’s leadership when it is their turn to lead.  That is, those who hang around long enough to actually take the reins of leadership.

I can fondly remember the experiences on the youth services of my day.  I loved walking into a meeting being conducted by youth and hearing gospel songs being sung and a young person preaching as well as many adults I ever heard.  I loved standing around a bon fire on the beach at night while we shared memory verses and testimonies of the saving grace of Christ and the struggles we were having at school because of our testimonies.  I recall youth camps that were reflections of the old-fashioned camp meetings the adults were running.  In fact, there were no serious differences between youth and adult services except perhaps ours were more youthfully vibrant.  The content was just as deep biblically.

By the way!  Good marriages were bred in those environments.  Calls to the ministry and the mission field were answered there.  Lives I still know about were rooted in Christ there and are still grounded in Him.  Time never changes anything.  The only thing that ever changes is commitment to Christ and the Word of God.

Dr. Gran’pa
(John Henderson)

 

What Must A Christian Do To Protect Their Family In The Midst Of Apostasy

The following question was recently asked, and I thought I would contribute in hopes of helping this person, as well as other Christians- Nazarene or otherwise. I hope this helps.  I don’t have all the answers.  No one does, except One.  God has the answers.  God does know the future.  God does not make mistakes and learns from them.  He is perfect, He is without error.  On that fact we can depend on.  He holds us in His hand.  We can trust Him even in the midst of our own uncertainty.  Thank God for that!

Question: My husband and I were both 4th generation Nazarenes. We both attended Nazarene schools and graduated in 1997/1998. When we started having children we really started noticing the emergent direction of the Nazarene Church and decided to leave (7 years ago). We really struggled to find a church and still after 3 years with our “home church” are a little unsettled. What is your advice for those with young children who want to raise their children the way we were raised? Both of our families were very conservative and believed in the conservative Nazarene doctrines. Any advice or suggestions would be appreciated.

Answer:

From my five years of involvement in this battle, here are some observations and conclusions I and others have come to.  The problem in the church begins with the fact that many of our leaders and pastors no longer believe that the entire Bible is the inspired and inerrant word of God.  If this foundation is destroyed, what else is left but for everything else to crumble?  The world is full of evil, and it seems the most dangerous kind is being found within the church today.

1. The leadership of the Nazaren church is pretty much invested with emergent ideology and other false doctrines and practices, the embracing of Roman Catholic practices, contemplative mysticism, open theism, a relaxation of the biblical teaching on the sin of homosexuality, and even promoting evolution openly.  When I say leadership, it includes some on the General Board (Middendorf and Porter) who have been shown to be promoters of some of these false movements. 

Dr. Porter for instance is a big advocate of the G-12 (Master’s Plan) movement, which particularly has caused great harm to Spanish-speaking Nazarene churches, but the movement is also influential in parts of Brazil and other countries, as well as here in North America.  He is also involved with radical political social justice organizations.  It has also been documented that Dr. Middendorf promotes the emergent church movement, along with his son Jon.

The other Generals from the past eight years at the very least have shown no leadership at all on these matters, and mainly are indifferent or blind to what is going on.  In my opinion, I believe they are mostly interesting in pursuing the financial bottom line and keeping the numbers growing in order to help the church get out of serious financial debt. Several years ago, there was a sexual abuse scandal that involved the Bethany First Church of the Nazarene in Missouri as well as Southern Nazarene University, which cost the denomination an unspecified amount of money to settle the case.  I believe this and other problems have brought the denomination into serious financial crisis, to the point that even some church properties are being sold, growing congregations disbanded, and then coffee houses are being setup to replace these churches, without regard to the members.

Others in leadership are also either buying into this stuff, or ignoring it completely, including many district superintendents, the college presidents (based on not voicing anything at all at best, or promoting these things at worst, such as Dan Boone of Trevecca), and many, many pastors and others in leadership positions.  A few leaders have boldly spoken out, such as Dr. Orville Jenkins, Jr., in opposition to emergent ideology and the social justice emphasis, but that is a rare exception.  Thus, where the leadership goes, so goes the denomination in general.  In short, I believe the denomination is damaged beyond repair, barring a complete and radical repentance of the General Superintendents and others in power. 

The Church of the Nazarene, with some exceptions, is not the church of Philadelphia, it is not the church of Smyrna.  It is more like the other five churches: a church that has forsaken its first love; a church that needs to repent; a church that has false prophets; a church that has fallen asleep; and a church that has a lukewarm faith.  Jesus did not take kindly to any of these churches, so what can we conclude as to what He thinks of the Church of the Nazarene now?  Does anyone really think that our Lord has no issue with professors teaching our students that Adam and Eve did not really exist, even though Christ Himself attested to his existen

Is There Anything Good?

  Holding the line inside our generally apostate denomination are the following: local churches that have decided to stand firm and stick a thumb in the eye to the leadership, by simply and respectfully rejecting the false, and preaching the word of God.  I am sure that many in leadership position go apoplectic whenever they hear that a local pastor proclaims that the Bible is completely and totally God’s inerrant word!  Did you know that a licensed minister in my New England district, was told by the licensing board a few years ago, that most likely he would not be approved for ordination.  Why?  Because he was guilty of attesting to the fact that he believed that the Bible was the inspired and inerrant word of God.  Imagine being rejected for believing in the word of God, yet many others being ordained who believe open theism, the teaching that God cannot possibly know all of the future.  This is our Church of the Nazarene today, and not one of these leaders can refute these facts.

 There are few of these faithful churches left, but they are there, and we are thankful for those churches that remain true to the word of God.  Also holding the line are most of our evangelists, yet, I believe the problem there is that there are fewer and fewer invites for evangelists to preach at churches, especially emergent churches.  No wonder, since the evangelists actually believe in the word of God!  And finally, there are the individuals and families who are hanging in there inside the walls of some of these churches, fighting hard to warn the brothers and sisters.  I cannot count the many letters I have received over the last five years, including from across the ocean, detailing the sorrow at what is happening in their church or district.  They speak of the disappointment as they realize their pastor is simply getting annoyed at them for asking questions.  They speak of how if they persist in getting answers, they end up getting ostracized, they end up being spoken of as the “troublemakers’ and “dividers”, and they eventually have no choice to leave.  And I can’t begin to tell you how this has affected more Nazarenes than I can imagine, some who left a church they were a member of for over 50 years.

My Advice Based On The Current Condition Of the Church

Your own decisions in this matter is ultimately up to you after seeking God’s direction through much prayer and reading of His word.  As we always tell everyone, don’t take our word for it.  Use biblical discernment, investigate the facts, and reject anything that does not line up with the word of God.

For those with young children, especially, you MUST protect them even more!  You cannot bring young children into a toxic environment where you wonder whether the Sunday School teacher is indoctrinating them with all sorts of foolishness.  That is one reason that I was also glad to leave my church, because of lack of solid biblical instruction from “teachers” who lacked discernment and knowledge of God’s word.

Option 1: Some may have to leave their church, even if they have been a member for many years.  Ultimately, a Christian must be true to God first and always, above allegiance to any pastor, church board, church members; above any kind of need for fellowship, or the need to keep their friends, or even the need to keep their children from getting hurt by losing their friends.  I know, because my family has been there, and done that.  We have experienced what it is like to be betrayed by a pastor who we trusted, and we have experienced the ostracizing that comes from simply speaking the truth.  We have experienced the loneliness from waiting for even one church member to call us.  Yet, we had no choice but to make the right decision regardless of the consequences.  Should a Christian decide to stay and “fight”, that may be what they should do.  But they also may need to shake the dust off their feet if they reach the conclusion that it is pointless to continue “fighting” those who persist in remaining in darkness.

Option 2: They may have to leave the church, and also they may have to leave the denomination.  I have letters from these type of Nazarenes.  They had to leave their church, and could not find a single Nazarene church in the area as a good alternative.  How sad that this happens so often, more that we perhaps can know.  But does one try to stay a Nazarene at all costs, or have we forgotten that the true church is comprised not of the Nazarene denomination, but of those faithful Christians from many other denominations who are true believers. It is almost like an idolatrous adoration towards the Nazarene denomination, with an attitude of “I will never leave my Nazarene denomination, no matter what.”  If anyone has that kind of attitude, I truly feel sorry for them.  They have lost sight of the true church of Jesus Christ.

Final Thought

The bottom line is that we ought to be faithful to Christ, not to a denomination, or a pastor, or to what has become a social club in many churches.  We cannot fret about any kind of “loyalty” to the denomination, and must take care of what we need to take care of.  It’s not worth any denomination, and in many ways, denominationalism has led to many of the problems in the church today.  We don’t need denominations, as much as we need strong local churches whose pastors preach unashamedly the whole counsel of God.  If there is to be a walking away by many from the denomination, then God will lead them away.  If there is to be a new holiness movement, God will direct it.  If not, we should not be concerned about it, but just be faithful to God.

Find a good, Bible believing church that preaches the truth, and stick with it.  But even so, always be a Berean.

Links:

Walter Martin: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=78wRKmmnwhY

 

Church Scandal: http://www.youtube.com/watch%3Fv=7gQDhjd93L4

Evangelicals Continue In Error By Promoting Roman Catholicism

“To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them” (Isaiah 8:20).

Compromising with biblical truth in order to join hands with the apostate Roman Catholic Church has been around for a long time in the evangelical churches.  In a recent publication from a Brazilian Nazarene church, I noted the same trend that I have seen throughout the Nazarene denomination in North America​.  Several pages into the publication was a column on the right side that was titled “To Think About.”  There were six people cited with quotes by each of them.  Especially disturbing to see was the following three: evangelical false teacher, Rick Warren, an ecumenist who is fully on board with Romanism; a Roman Catholic pope from the early 1900s, Pius X; and Mother Teresa.  (The other three quoted were Isaac Newton; psychologist James Dobson; and a Brazilian writer George R. Foster).

Here are the quotes with my best English translation:

B. Pope Pius X
“The mission, which we were divinely entrusted, to shepherd the Lord’s flock, among the main duties under Christ’s order to protect with care all that has been delivered to the saints, rejecting the profane new ideas and the oppositions of a deceptive science.” (Pope Pius X)

Rick Warren:

“Without a clear purpose, we are without a foundation on which you can  decisions, allocate your time and use resources. The tendency will be to make decisions with based on the circumstances, in stressful moments, and the mood of the day. Those who do not know their purpose try to perform beyond what they should, and this causes stress and fatigue, creating conflicts.

Mother Teresa quote
“Those who judge people don’t have time to love them” (Mother Teresa)

I continue to find it incredible that more and more pastors, district leaders, and college presidents are disqualifying themselves from such positions of leadership, due to their infatuation with the Roman Catholic “heroes.”  You rarely see quotes anymore of anyone Nazarene!  Instead, they are more apt to quote Mother Teresa, Teresa of Avila, and mystics such as Thomas Merton.  Do they know that in her own words, Mother Teresa lived in darkness the last years of her life, and was in utter despair?  Or that she was more interested in everyone being comfortable in their own religion, rather than preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ as the only way?  Do they not know these things?  If so, what does this say about their spending so many years achieving a doctoral degree, and yet they still do not know the Bible?

The harm they are bringing to the true church of Christ by quoting false teachers and people who promote false doctrines cannot be measured completely, but harm is being done.  To quote people who lived and taught salvation by works, and to quote those who see nothing wrong with Catholic doctrine, is at best irresponsible.  In one example of many examples of Mother Teresa’s beliefs, can a true Christian really accept the following thinking from her?

“If in coming face to face with God we accept Him in our lives, then we … become a better Hindu, a better Muslim, a better Catholic, a better whatever we are … What God is in your mind you must accept.” (Mother Teresa: Her People and Her Work)

“I was so struck with the thought that ONLY WHEN THE PRIEST IS THERE CAN WE HAVE OUR ALTAR AND OUR TABERNACLE AND OUR JESUS. ONLY THE PRIEST CAN PUT JESUS THERE FOR US” (Mother Teresa, Be Holy, pp. 111).

Is it a lack of discernment and knowledge of scripture?  If so, what does that say about what has been taught at our Christian universities and seminaries in the past several decades?  Or is it simply explained by the fact that they know Romanism teaches a false gospel, but they do not care, and are seeking something else from this type of promotion?  Is it to show a more ecumenical spirit, in order to draw more people into the denomination?  Is it an attempt to please others and show that we truly “love” everyone.  I find it interesting that the Mother Teresa quote has to do with judging, and sounds like the familiar chorus coming from those who do not want to have any of their doctrinal “fruit” inspected.

Whatever the case may be, this shameful embrace of Roman Catholicism and trying to make nice with the world is particularly sweeping the Church of the Nazarene, and especially its leaders.  There is an attempt it seems to make everybody feel good about anything, including the shameless idolizing of a former world leader (Mandela) who promoted abortion, homosexuality, and prostitution.  So to those Nazarene leaders and others who have forgotten what salvation is, and it means to be saved, I have included here a summary by Brother David Cloud to teach them what true biblical salvation is, and to remind them that we are to “have nothing to do with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.”

Manny Silva

Links:

http://standupforthetruth.com/2013/06/does-rick-warren-want-you-to-come-home-to-the-catholic-church/

 

What The Roman Catholic Church Teaches About Salvation

Dec 18, 2013, David Cloud, Way of Life Literature, www.wayoflife.org

Because of the ecumenical movement, a growing number of Roman Catholics are familiar with biblical terminology about salvation, such as born again, and some have been trained to reply affirmatively to the question, “Are you saved? Have you been born again?”

The problem is that they do not mean by this what the Bible means. Rome’s doctrine of salvation is not the true gospel of complete and sure salvation through personal faith in Christ. It is a gospel of works that is sometimes presented under the guise of grace.

THE ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH’S DOCTRINE OF SALVATION CAN BE SUMMARIZED AS FOLLOWS:

1. Rome teaches that Christ, having purchased redemption by His blood and death, delivered it to the Catholic Church to be distributed to men through her sacraments. 

Rome’s gospel centers in the Catholic Church, the pope, and the sacraments. While Catholicism teaches that Christ died on the cross to purchase man’s salvation, it is not satisfied simply to invite men to receive this salvation by faith directly from the resurrected Christ.

Consider the following quotes from the Vatican II Council:

For ‘God’s only-begotten Son … has won a treasure for the militant Church … he has entrusted it to blessed Peter, the key-bearer of heaven, and to his successors who are Christ’s vicars on earth, so that they may distribute it to the faithful for their salvation. They may apply it with mercy for reasonable causes to all who have repented for and have confessed their sins. At times they may remit completely, and at other times only partially, the temporal punishment due to sin in a general as well as in special ways (insofar as they judge it to be fitting in the sight of the Lord). The merits of the Blessed Mother of God and of all the elect … are known to add further to this treasury’” (ellipsis are in the original) (Vatican II, Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, Apostolic Constitution on the Revision of Indulgences, Chap. 4, 7, p. 80).

“For it is through Christ’s Catholic Church alone, which is the universal help towards salvation, that the fulness of the means of salvation can be obtained. It was to the apostolic college alone of which Peter is the head, that we believe that our Lord entrusted all the blessings of the New Covenant, in order to establish on earth the one Body of Christ into which all those should be fully incorporated who belong in any way to the people of God” (Vatican II, Decree on Ecumenism, chap. 1, 3, p. 415).

2. Rome’s plan of salvation has several steps:

The First Step is Baptism. According to Rome, salvation begins with baptism. It can be infant baptism for those born into Catholic homes or adult baptism for those who approach the Roman Church later in life. Either way, the Catholic Church teaches that through baptism a person receives spiritual life.

“By the sacrament of Baptism, whenever it is properly conferred in the way the Lord determined and received with the proper dispositions of soul, man becomes truly incorporated into the crucified and glorified Christ and is reborn to a sharing of the divine life” (Vatican II, Decree on Ecumenism, chap. 3, II, 22, p. 427).

The next steps are the other church sacraments.

After baptism a person is considered to be born again and part of the Church. This new life is said to be nurtured and kept alive through Confirmation, Mass, Penance and the other Catholic sacraments.

“Just as Christ was sent by the Father so also he sent the apostles … that they might preach the Gospel to every creature and proclaim that the Son of God by his death and resurrection had freed us from the power of Satan and from death, and brought us into the Kingdom of his Father. But he also willed that the work of salvation which they preached SHOULD BE SET IN TRAIN THROUGH THE SACRIFICE AND SACRAMENTS, around which the entire liturgical [ritualistic] life revolves” (Vatican II, Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, Chap. 1, I, 5,6, pp. 23-24).

“THE SEVEN SACRAMENTS ARE THE NECESSARY MEANS ESTABLISHED BY CHRIST THROUGH WHICH HIS REDEEMING, LIFE-GIVING, SANCTIFYING GRACE IS IMPARTED TO INDIVIDUALS’ SOULS. You must centre your life upon the sacraments established by Christ if you want to save your soul.

Means of salvation. … The sacraments are the source of your real life, the divine life that will unite you with God in this world and in eternity. Let nothing make you think that you can get along without the sacraments. Without them your soul must die. … IF YOU DON’T RECEIVE THE SACRAMENTS AT ALL, YOU DON’T RECEIVE GRACE. If you don’t receive them properly, that is, if you receive them seldom and with little devotion, you receive less grace” (L.G. Lovasik, The Eucharist in Catholic Life, pp. 14,15).

Thus we see that the Roman Catholic plan of salvation is faith in Christ PLUS baptism PLUS continuing in the sacraments.

3. Rome teaches that salvation is by the grace of God through Christ and is received by faith, but it denies that salvation is by grace ALONE and faith ALONE.

The following statement is made by a modern Roman priest well known for his emphasis upon the necessity for personal faith in the exercise of the sacraments, yet he is careful to say that the sacraments are as necessary as faith.

“In recent years the church has reiterated again and again that we are saved by faith AND the sacraments of faith. BOTH ARE NECESSARY” (J.D. Crichton, Christian Celebration: The Sacraments, p. 65).

The Catholic Church redefines grace.

When a Roman Catholic priest speaks of salvation through the grace of Jesus Christ, he does not mean the unmerited, free grace of Christ whereby a believing sinner is eternally and completely and once-for-all saved from sin. By “grace,” the Roman Catholic Church means God’s help to live a righteous life.

Consider the following quote from Vatican II:

“All children of the Church should nevertheless remember that their exalted condition results, not from their own merits, but from the grace of Christ. If they fail to respond in thought, word and deed to that grace, not only shall they not be saved, but they shall be the more severely judged” (Vatican II, Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, chap. 2, 14, p. 337).

This is a strange kind of grace. It is a grace that does not result in eternal certainty, but only the POSSIBILITY of living up to God’s requirements. It is a subtle and unscriptural MIXTURE OF GRACE PLUS WORKS that is condemned in Galatians 1:6-8.

 THE BIBLE’S ANSWER TO ROME’S DOCTRINE OF SALVATION 

1. Sacramental salvation is contrary to the examples of salvation in the book of Acts (Acts 10:43: 11:16-18; 14:27; 15:9-11; 16:30-31). The souls that were saved in the early churches were saved once and for all by putting their faith in Jesus Christ. Their salvation was not a process of sacramentalism.

2. Sacramental salvation is contrary to the teaching of the book of Romans. This book is written expressly to reveal the way of salvation (Romans 1:15-17).

Consider Romans 3:21-24; 4:4-6; 11:6. Notice in the last reference that God says it is impossible to mix grace and works for salvation. We are saved by grace or we are saved by works; it cannot be a mixture of the two as the Catholic Church teaches!

3. Sacramental salvation is also contrary to the Gospel of John, which was written expressly to lead men to eternal life in Christ (John 20:31).

The first twelve chapters of John describe Jesus’ ministry to the world of lost men. In these chapters, we are shown by unmistakable emphasis that eternal life and salvation are received by faith in Jesus Christ and faith in Christ alone. “Believe” is the key word in these chapters. See John 1:12; 3:16-18, 36; 5:24; 6:28-29; 7:38-39; 8:24; 9:35-38; 11:25-26; 12:36-37. Notice that in all of these verses we are told that salvation is obtained through faith in Christ and there is no hint of sacramentalism.

4. Sacramental salvation is contrary to the summary of the gospel in 1 Corinthians 15:1-4. Here Paul summarizes the gospel that he preached, and it is faith in the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ. Period. There is no sacramentalism whatsoever. No priests; no church; no works; no sacraments.

5. Sacramental salvation is contrary to the summary of the gospel in Ephesians 2:8-10. This passage teaches that salvation is a free gift of God’s grace and that works follow as the evidence. This puts everything into proper order and perspective. It is God’s will that men live holy lives, but holy living is the product of salvation and not the way of salvation.

6. Sacramental salvation is contrary to the summary of the gospel in Titus 3:4-8. This passage also teaches that salvation is a free gift of God’s grace and that works follow as the evidence and product.

This is true Bible salvation.  Eternal life, forgiveness of sin, righteousness, and the Holy Spirit are received when an individual acknowledges his sinfulness, repents of his sin and trusts Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. It is only after this that a person can do any work to please God. Works and ceremonies, such as baptism and the Lord’s Supper, in themselves have nothing to do with forgiveness of sin, eternal life, the new birth, or becoming a child of God. Rather, obedience to God follows salvation as naturally as living follows ones natural birth. First we must receive new life through personal faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Then, having life, the regenerated believer serves his Master.

WAS MOTHER TERESA A TRUE CHRISTIAN?

Updated September 5, 2007 (first published via the FBIS April 12, 2000, from the article “Is Mother Teresa an Evangelical Christian” that first appeared in O Timothy magazine, Volume 2, Issue 1, 1985) (David Cloud, Fundamental Baptist Information Service, P.O. Box 610368, Port Huron, MI 48061, 866-295-4143, fbns@wayoflife.org; for instructions about subscribing and unsubscribing or changing addresses, see the information paragraph at the end of the article) -

Mother Teresa was born Agness Gonxha Bojaxhiu in what is now Yugoslavia on August 27, 1910. Raised in a middle-class Roman Catholic family, she felt the call to be a nun at age 12. Five years later, in 1928, Agness said good-bye to her mother (it was the last time she would ever see her) and made her way to Darjeeling, India, a picturesque town nestled 7,000 feet in the Himalayas, for training. In 1931, she took the new name of Sister Teresa, after the French nun St. Therese of Lisieux (the Little Flower). In 1939 she took final vows and was named mother superior at St. Mary’s School at the Loreto Sisters convent in a suburb of Calcutta.

While traveling to Darjeeling for a retreat in 1946, she felt called to work in the slums; and in 1948 she first put on the namesake white sari with a blue border, and moved into the wretched slums of Calcutta. The Vatican approved her new order, the Missionaries of Charity, on October 7, 1950. In 1952 she opened Nirmal Hriday, her now-famous home for dying destitutes in Kalighat, in south Calcutta. During Mother Teresa’s lifetime, an estimated 54,000 people were brought into Nirmal Hriday.

In 1963 the Missionaries of Charity was expanded to include male workers. Today roughly 4,500 nuns and 500 “religious brothers” work with the Missionaries of Charity operating 600 homes in 120 countries.

Having lived more than 87 years, almost 50 of those spent assisting the destitute, Mother Teresa died on September 5, 1997.

HER GOOD WORK

That this woman was a kind, self-giving woman, we have no doubt. Having lived in that part of the world for 16 years and having spent several weeks in Calcutta itself, I never doubt that Mother Teresa was an unusually self-sacrificing person. Many of Calcutta’s ten million residents live in the lowest squalor, some reports estimating as many as one million people are born, grow up, live, and die on the filthy streets of that massive city. The place is awfully oppressive to one’s spirit, especially for the newcomer.

Even after twenty or more visits, I never ceased to be depressed by wretched Calcutta. I’m not alone in this feeling, either. It is said that Winston Churchill, after his first visit to Calcutta, stated that he was happy he had made the trip–happy, that is, because having been there once and having experienced it, he would not have to return!

Yes, Calcutta is an awful place in many ways, and the living condition of multitudes of people there is wretched. For a woman to give her life to care for the castoffs of society is commendable.

Acknowledging that Mother Teresa is a good woman from the human perspective, though, has not answered the original question inscribed in the title of this report: “Was Mother Teresa a regenerate Christian in the biblical sense, a woman with which Bible-believing Christians should associate and with whom they should work?”

MAN’S ESTIMATION OF MOTHER TERESA

Mother Teresa certainly had a fair share of commendations! The secular world honored her with the Nobel Peace Prize (1979) and with other accolades on every hand–by heads of state, by scientists, by the press and peoples of practically every nation on earth. In 1980 she was given India’s highest decoration, the Bharat Ratna. In June 1985, she received from President Reagan the highest United States civilian honor, the Medal of Freedom award (Christian News, July 1, 1985, p. 15). In October 1985, she received the “warmest ovation of the United Nation’s 40th anniversary celebration” (Birmingham Post-Herald, October 28, 1985). In June 1997, she addressed the United States Congress and was given the Congressional Gold Medal, the highest civilian honor Congress can confer.

It goes without saying that Mother Teresa was commended by her own Roman Catholic Church. She was awarded the Pope John XXIII Peace Prize in 1971. When she died, she was hailed as a saint by Pope John Paul II and other high officials in Catholicism. Cardinal John O’Connor of New York said Mother Teresa is already a saint. In March 1999, Pope John Paul II approved a waver to put Mother Teresa on a fast track to official sainthood. Normally a five-year waiting period is required after the death of an individual before the process toward sainthood is even started, but in Mother Teresa’s case the process began only months after her death and she has already been beatified. The only step remaining is for her to be canonized as a “saint.” With the Pope’s permission, Archbishop Henry Sebastian D’Souza of Calcutta has begun the investigation that will doubtless lead to “beatification” and eventually canonization as a “saint.”

Joining in the applause are most Protestant groups. At Mother Teresa’s death, Coretta Scott King, widow of the slain civil rights leader and Baptist minister Martin Luther King, said, “Our world has lost the most celebrated saint of our times.”

Almost without exception the major Protestant bodies, such as the more than 300 member bodies of the World Council of Churches, have risen up and called Mother Teresa blessed. An example is the statement made in the official periodical of the Church of North India, a member of the World Council and representative of 700,000 Christians in over 2,000 congregations in India. The cover of The North India Churchman for November 1979 featured a photo of a smiling Mother Teresa, and inside this issue editor V. Henry Devadas said:

“We are delighted that Mother Teresa has been awarded the 1979 Nobel Peace Prize. We offer our hearty congratulations to Mother Teresa and thank God for her ministry of charity to the poorest of the poor in our country. May her example of dedicated service to God and man inspire each one of us.”

Mother Teresa also appeared on the cover of the January-April 1990 issue of the Sowing Circle, a publication of the Bible Society of India. The accompanying article describes Bible Society General Secretary B.K. Premanik’s visit with Mother Teresa:

“Millions of Christians around the world went down on their knees as they learnt about Mother Teresa’s ill-health. … A simple, unassuming, white-clad woman but her life speaks volumes about the love of the Lord Jesus Christ. … Her picture has been printed in some of the Bible Society of India scripture materials. We appreciate her selfless service to the people, the down-trodden in particular. We pray that the Lord would continue to strengthen her to demonstrate the love of Christ and that the Christian community will learn from her example.”

It is not that surprising to see the world, Catholicism, and liberal Protestantism offer unqualified applause to Mother Teresa. More significant and difficult to understand is the applause given to her by those that claim to be Bible-believing Christians.

Consider WORLD VISION, which claims to be an evangelical Christian mission. A report on the Jesus ‘81 rally at Anaheim Stadium appeared in the Los Angeles Times, May 16, 1981, as follows: “In the June-July 1984 issue of World Vision, an article by Joseph Ryan, director of World Vision’s Northwest Regional Office, tells of his visit to Mother Teresa in India who founded and leads the Roman Catholic Missionaries of Charity. Noted for her efforts to help the poor, this famous woman impressed the World Vision visitors with her humble spirit and simple words in which she said her work was ‘all for Jesus.’”

When Mother Teresa died, Evangelist BILLY GRAHAM gave this statement to the press: “It was my privilege to be with her on several occasions. The first time was at the Home of Dying Destitutes in Calcutta. I had a wonderful hour of fellowship in the Lord with her just at sunset, and I will never forget the sounds, the smells and the strange beauty of that place. When she walked into the room to greet me, I felt that I was, indeed, meeting a saint’’ (“Mother Teresa Hailed as a Saint,” Associated Press, Sept. 6, 1997).

Mother Teresa was extolled in an editorial in the January 1982 issue of LIGHT OF LIFE magazine, the most popular evangelical periodical in India.

In early May 1997, the popular radio-television preacher D. JAMES KENNEDY featured Mother Teresa on his broadcast. The announcer for Kennedy stated warmly, “who better to speak on love than Mother Teresa.”

The November 1989 issue of JAMES DOBSON’S Focus on the Family’s Clubhouse magazine featured a smiling Mother Teresa on the cover. The lead article was “Teresa of Calcutta: Little Woman with a Big Heart.” The readers of this magazine were made to think that Mother Teresa was a genuine New Testament Christian and that she did a great work for God through her Missionaries of Charities mission.

Speaking at a Promise Keepers conference in Memphis in 1996, CHUCK COLSON said Christians need to reach across all denominational lines and that he was proud that Mother Teresa was his sisters in Christ (Calvary Contender, November 15, 1996). In his 2003 book “Being the Body” Colson said when he was asked by someone to travel to Calcutta to give the plan of salvation to Mother Teresa before she died, he replied that such a scene would give “a new dimension to the word ludicrous” (p. 64).

BILL HYBELS of Willowcreek Community Church invited Priest Med Laz of Holy Family Catholic Church to speak to his people. When Laz boasted that Mother Teresa was a Roman Catholic, Hybels indicated that Protestants are jealous of that fact (Dave Hunt, Occult Invasion: The Subtle Seduction of the World and Church, 1998).

Charismatics have also honored Mother Teresa. PAT ROBERTSON hosted a television special in 1984 entitled “Don’t Ask Me, Ask God.” The program, broadcast on 150 television outlets as well as the Christian Broadcasting Network cable system, featured Mother Teresa, together with other well-known Christians (EP News Service, Aug. 25, 1984).

At a Sign and Wonders Conference in Melbourne, Australia, March 3, 1989, JOHN WIMBER praised Mother Teresa (Protestant Review, March 1989).

In 1992 JAN CROUCH, of Trinity Broadcasting Network, fulfilled a lifelong dream to meet with Mother Teresa. She said, “It was a dream come true. I had my questions all prepared, but when this precious tiny lady came by, all I could do was fall to my knees. What will it be like when we see Jesus Himself, face to face? I felt I had a little foretaste that day!” (Plains Baptist Challenger, June 1992).

The October 4 issue of WORLD magazine contained an article entitled “An Ordinary Faith: Mother Teresa’s life should prod us to go and do likewise.” The second paragraph began, “Last month the gates of heaven finally welcomed Mother Teresa home” (David Kuo, “An Ordinary Faith,” World, Oct. 4, 1997, p. 26). To make such a statement one would have to be utterly careless about the definition of the gospel. Though we could wish that Mother Teresa is in heaven, by her own testimony she was trusting in Rome’s sacramental gospel, particularly in Mary and the Mass.

The November-December 1997, issue of THE PLAIN TRUTH magazine, published by the Worldwide Church of God, featured Mother Teresa on its cover and praised her in a feature article entitled “In His Service.”

The October 20-21, 2007, edition of “Turning Point with DAVID JEREMIAH” featured the work of Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity in Calcutta. There was not a hint of warning that they preach a false gospel. The report concluded with the following quote from Pope John Paul II: “Keep Jesus Christ in your hearts, and you will recognize His face in every human being.”

Many other examples could be given. It is obvious that Mother Teresa was accepted as a true Christian by multitudes from practically every spectrum of Christianity.

Let me repeat, I am not doubting the goodness of Mother Teresa’s work from a temporal, human, earthly perspective. Yet the most important question in regard to any religious work is whether or not it is acceptable to God, whether or not it is grounded and settled in the Truth. The Bible says, “To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them” (Isaiah 8:20).

The Lord Jesus Christ warned that performing wonderful works in His name is not evidence of salvation.
“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).

Thus we see that the Lord Jesus Christ solemnly warned that MANY who will do wonderful things IN HIS NAME will turn out to be unsaved people who did not know Him in truth.

It is not enough that someone loves “Jesus” or serves “the Lord” or preaches “the gospel.” The apostle Paul warned of false christs, false spirits, and false gospels (2 Corinthians 11:3-4). The Devil can and does counterfeit everything God is doing in this age. He has his own gospel, his own doctrine of conversion, even his own brand of holiness.

The only way we can know for sure what is genuine and what is counterfeit is to test it by the infallible Word of God. The people at Berea were commended for doing this: “These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so” (Acts 17:11).

Those who carefully test everything by the Word of God today are commonly counted as hateful troublemakers by many within mainstream evangelicalism, but the Bible warns that those who are not careful are foolish. “The simple believeth every word: but the prudent man looketh well to his going” (Proverbs 14:15). The wise man knows there are many spiritual dangers. He is aware that he has a formidable spiritual enemy who transforms himself into an angel of light and whose ministers transform themselves into ministers of righteousness. The wise man takes heed to the Bible’s warnings: “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour” (1 Peter 5:8). “… Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works” (2 Corinthians 11:14-15). Because of these spiritual realities, the wise Christian is extremely cautious. He does not gullibly accept someone as a genuine Christian because of a mere profession or because of “good works.” He investigates what gospel the person holds, what Christ he is trusting, what spirit he is following.

Was Mother Teresa a regenerate Christian? To what eternal destiny did she lead those to whom she ministered? This is the important question, no matter how unpopular it might be even to consider making such a “harsh” and “unloving” judgment.

AN EVANGELICAL CATHOLIC?

There are not a few who would say Mother Teresa was a “liberated” evangelical Catholic of the post-Vatican II period and that she was not only ministering food, medicine, and human kindness, but the true gospel of eternal salvation as well. Is this so? We have not far to go to find the answer. Mother Teresa openly and gladly admitted that she was a thorough-going Roman Catholic, a faithful follower of her church, an obedient sister of Romanism (except that she believed that women should be ordained to the priesthood!).

While the declarations of the Vatican II Council of the 1960s did bring changes to the Catholic Church, it did not change the foundational dogmas of that organization. Vatican II not only upheld the false teachings of Catholicism, it actually strengthened them.

The hundreds of bishops attending Vatican II reaffirmed such Roman heresies as papal supremacy; the Roman priesthood; the mass as a re-sacrifice of Christ; a sacramental faith plus works gospel; Catholic tradition on equal par with Scripture; Mary the Queen of Heaven and co-redemptress with Christ; auricular confession; pilgrimages to “holy shrines”; purgatory; prayers to and for the dead; etc.

All of the these Roman Catholic doctrines are reaffirmed in the book Vatican Council II–The Conciliar and Post Conciliar Documents. This book is published by the Roman Catholic Church and contains the Imprimature: Walter P. Kellenberg, D,D., Bishop of Rockville Centre, August 12, 1975. “Imprimature” is the official stamp of approval for Catholic publications and means “let it be printed.”

Consider some quotes from the Vatican II documents:

Catholic traditions on equal par with Scripture–

“Sacred Tradition and sacred Scripture, then, are bound closely together, and communicate one with the other. … Thus it comes about that the Church does not draw her certainty about all revealed truths from the holy Scriptures alone. Hence, both Scripture and Tradition must be accepted and honoured with equal feelings of devotion and reverence” (Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation, Chap. 2, 9, p. 682).

Salvation through sacraments and the church–

“[Christ] also willed that the work of salvation which they preached should be set in train through the sacrifice and sacraments, around which the entire liturgical [ritualistic] life revolves. Thus by Baptism men are grafted into the paschal mystery of Christ. … They receive the spirit of adoption as sons” (Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, Chap. 1, I, 5,6, pp. 23-24).

Salvation through baptism–

“By the sacrament of Baptism, whenever it is properly conferred in the way the Lord determined and received with the proper dispositions of soul, man becomes truly incorporated into the crucified and glorified Christ and is reborn to a sharing of the divine life” (Decree on Ecumenism, chap. 3, II, 22, p. 427).

Popes distribute salvation–

“God’s only-begotten Son … has won a treasure for the militant Church … he has entrusted it to blessed Peter, the key-bearer of heaven, and to his successors who are Christ’s vicars on earth, so that they may distribute it to the faithful for their salvation … The merits of the Blessed Mother of God and of all the elect … are known to add further to this treasury” (the ellipses are in the original) (Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, Apostolic Constitution on the Revision of Indulgences, Chap. 4, 7, p. 80).

Mary, the sinless mother of God, perpetual virgin, bodily assumed into Heaven as queen over all–

“Joined to Christ the head and in communion with all his saints, the faithful must in the first place reverence the memory of the glorious ever Virgin Mary, Mother of God and of our Lord Jesus Christ … Because of the gift of sublime grace she far surpasses all creatures, both in heaven and on earth. … The Immaculate Virgin preserved free from all stain of original sin, was taken up body and soul into heavenly glory, when her earthly life was over, and exalted by the Lord as Queen over all things” (Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, chap. 8, I, 52,53; II, 59, pp. 378,381- 382).

Mary, co-redemptress with Christ–

“As St. Irenaeus says, she being obedient, became the cause of salvation for herself and for the whole human race. Hence not a few of the early Fathers gladly assert with him in their preaching … ‘death through Eve, life through Mary’ … This union of the mother with the Son in the work of salvation is made manifest from the time of Christ’s virginal conception up to his death” (Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, chap. 8, II, 56, pp. 380-381).

Mary, Heavenly intercessor–

“Taken up to heaven she did not lay aside this saving office but by her manifold intercession continues to bring us the gifts of eternal salvation. By her maternal charity, she cares for the brethren of her Son, who still journey on earth surrounded by dangers and difficulties, until they are led into their blessed home. Therefore the Blessed Virgin is invoked in the Church under the titles of Advocate, Helper, Benefactress, and Mediatrix [Mediator]” (Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, chap. 8, II, 62, pp. 382-383).

Further quotes from Vatican II and from the New Catholic Catechism can be found in the author’s book Evangelicals and Rome, available from Way of Life Literature.

It is plain that the Catholic Church continues to uphold doctrines which are contrary to the Word of God and even blasphemous. One can stubbornly say, “I don’t care what the Catholic Church teaches or what Mother Teresa believed; I still believe she was a good Christian.” But having faced the facts, one cannot deny that the Catholic Church preaches a false gospel and is committed to a vast range of heresies.

It is possible for a Roman Catholic to be saved IN SPITE OF Rome’s false gospel, but it is not possible for someone to be saved BY Rome’s gospel.

Further, the Bible says that those who are saved will abide in sound doctrine. “They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us” (1 John 2:19). A truly saved person who has the indwelling Holy Spirit of Truth will reject error.

WHAT MOTHER TERESA BELIEVED

Mother Teresa was a thorough-going Catholic, a faithful daughter of Vatican II. She was a great worshiper of Mary; she believed the wafer of the mass is literally and actually Jesus Christ.

In June 1986, Mother Teresa spoke at the second annual Rosary for Peace gathering. She said, “Generously give your child to be consecrated to God. The greatest gift God can give to a family is to have a son to be a priest at the altar, at whose absolution a sinner full of sin becomes a sinner without sin. Pray that one or two of your children be consecrated that you may grow in holiness. Make your family one heart full of love, the heart of Jesus through Mary” (The Tidings, Los Angeles, California, June 20, 1986).

Thus Mother Teresa believed that the Catholic priest has the power to absolve sinners of sin and that we come to Jesus through Mary.

At the same meeting Mother Teresa called on the audience to pray the rosary, “which we pray everyday, in the streets, around the world, wherever we are,” and to have adore the Eucharist in their parishes. She asked that the rosary be said for peace…” (The Tidings, Los Angeles, Calif., June 20, 1986).

The rosary is largely a prayer to Mary. To “adore the Eucharist” is to worship the wafer of the mass as Jesus Christ.

Mother Teresa Believed All Men Are Children of God

In her speech before the United Nations in October 1985, she said, “We gather to thank God for the 40 years of the beautiful work of the United Nations for the good of people. No color, no religion, no nationality should come between us–we are all children of God. … When we destroy an unborn child, we destroy God” (Christian News, Nov. 11, 1985, p. 17).

Mother Teresa called AIDS sufferers “children of God” and said, “Each one of them is Jesus in a distressing disguise” (Time, Jan. 13, 1986).

The April 7-13, 1990, issue of Radio Times told the story of Mother Teresa sheltering an old Hindu priest. “She nursed him with her own hands and helped him to die reconciled with his own gods.” This is exactly what the Missionaries of Charity do in Kathmandu, Nepal, as we shall see later in this report from the interview with Sister Ann.

In the biography Mother Teresa: Her People and Her Work, she is quoted by Desmond Doig as follows: “If in coming face to face with God we accept Him in our lives, then we … become a better Hindu, a better Muslim, a better Catholic, a better whatever we are … What God is in your mind you must accept.”

Mother Teresa participated in the “Summit for Peace” in Assisi, Italy, in November 1986. This blasphemous prayer meeting was arranged by the pope and was attended by leaders of many different religions, including Hindu, Buddhist, Islamic, Shinto, Sikh, and North American Indians–all of whom united in prayers for world peace (Time, Nov. 10, 1986, pp. 78-79).

When Mother Teresa died, her longtime friend and biographer Naveen Chawla said that he once asked her bluntly, “Do you convert?” She replied, “Of course I convert. I convert you to be a better Hindu or a better Muslim or a better Protestant. Once you’ve found God, it’s up to you to decide how to worship him” (“Mother Teresa Touched other Faiths,” Associated Press, Sept. 7, 1997).

Mother Teresa Speaks to Priests

As further evidence of just how radically unbiblical Mother Teresa’s views were, consider some quotes from her speech at the Worldwide Retreat for Priests, October 1984, in Paul VI Audience Hall, Vatican City:

“At the word of a priest, that little piece of bread becomes the body of Christ, the Bread of Life. Then you give this living Bread to us, so that we too might live and become holy. … We and our people are hungry for God, hungry for holiness. I have seen this same hunger even among Hindus and Muslims” (Mother Teresa, cited in Be Holy: God’s First Call to Priests Today, edited by Tom Forrest, C.Ss.R., foreword by Msgr. John Magee, South Bend, Indiana: Greenlawn Press, 1987, p. 108).

“I remember the time a few years back, when the president of Yeman asked us to send some of our sisters to his country. I told him that this was difficult because for so many years no chapel was allowed in Yemen for saying a public mass, and no one was allowed to function there publicly as a priest. I explained that I wanted to give them sisters, but the trouble was that, without a priest, without Jesus going with them, our sisters couldn’t go anywhere. It seems that the president of Yemen had some kind of a consultation, and the answer that came back to us was, ‘Yes, you can send a priest with the sisters!’ I was so struck with the thought that ONLY WHEN THE PRIEST IS THERE CAN WE HAVE OUR ALTAR AND OUR TABERNACLE AND OUR JESUS. ONLY THE PRIEST CAN PUT JESUS THERE FOR US. … Jesus wants to go there, but we cannot bring him unless you first give him to us” (Mother Teresa, Be Holy, pp. 109, 111).

“So let us ask the help of our Lady! She is a Mother full of grace, full of God, full of Jesus. Let us ask her to be our Mother, guiding us and protecting us. … It is true that we are already being helped by our tremendous devotion to Mary. She is our patroness and our Mother, and she is always leading us to Jesus” (Mother Teresa, Be Holy, p. 75).

“One day she [a girl working in Calcutta] came, putting her arms around me, and saying, ‘I have found Jesus.’ … ‘And just what were you doing when you found him?’ I asked. She answered that after 15 years she had finally gone to confession, and received Holy Communion from the hands of a priest. Her face was changed, and she was smiling. She was a different person because THAT PRIEST HAD GIVEN HER JESUS” (Mother Teresa, Be Holy, p. 74).

“We must bring Jesus back into these homes by consecrating them to his Sacred Heart, by bringing prayer into the people’s lives, and teaching them to say the Rosary. Priests always used to do this before, and they have to start doing these things again, so that these families can have peace and joy and holiness through their consecration to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. … THIS IS ONE OF THE REASONS YOU ARE CALLED ‘ANOTHER CHRIST’” (Mother Teresa, Be Holy, p. 112).

It should be clear that Mother Teresa was anything but an evangelical Christian. She was a self-sacrificing woman who followed a false religion.

Mother Teresa quote

What Christian College Should I Attend? Answering A Student’s Question

Recently I was asked by a young Christian for my opinion about Christian colleges.  My alma mater, Eastern Nazarene College, was mentioned as a consideration. Here is what I was asked:

“I was thinking about transferring to another university in the fall of 2014.
I know you like to do a lot of research, and such, so I have several questions.

 1. What are the positive things about Eastern Nazarene College (I ask this first because I know you might ignore the pros)?
 2. What are the bad things about ENC?
 3. What Christian colleges would you recommend? 

I will share my answers here, in the hopes that I can contribute towards helping other young Christians make the right decision for their future education.


Dear Jane,

First of all, I am honored that you would seek my advice regarding such an important decision in your life.  I pray that any influence I may have in your life is based on a biblically-centered worldview, and based on the unwavering truth that the Bible is God’s inerrant word, and it is the final authority for our Christian faith and practice.  So here are my answers to your three questions.

Question 1: What are the positive things about Eastern Nazarene College?

It’s hard for me nowadays to think of the positive things about ENC, when there are so many negatives that I have found.  Although I don’t ignore the pros about any school, I consider them based on the cons as well. One positive is that I am sure there are principled, biblically grounded professors at ENC, who would be a good influence for you if you were in any of their courses.  You will probably be able to find a real Bible believing professor at any Christian school, except perhaps for the very worst ones.  I am sure also that there are good career programs at the school, perhaps one that will fit your career plans.  I recall enjoying much of what I learned back when I attended ENC in the late seventies.  ENC is also located in a town which is not far from the city of Boston, a city rich with historical significance.  They have a pretty good athletics program, and if you are interested in sports, you may well want to participate.  These are some of the positives I can think of right now.

Question 2: What are the bad things about ENC?

I will summarize some of the most significant things that make ENC a “Christian” school in name only, and instead makes it a breeding ground for some of the most damaging and anti-God teachings you would ever encounter.

  1. ENC supports and welcomes professors who teach ungodly ideologies, such as: open theism, the teaching that God does not know the future; process theology, the teaching that God is not perfect, and actually learns from His mistakes; and “theistic” evolution, a godless belief in our origins that completely contradicts God’s word and clear account of how he created us.  One of the most dangerous professors who taught evolution, Karl Giberson, has left ENC, but still speaks at schools such as Northwest Nazarene University and remains an influence.
  2. ENC has been gradually softening its position on the clear biblical teachings on homosexuality.  Its leadership recently approved the formation of an LGBTQ support group on campus.  Its current chaplain delivered one of the most shameful messages to the student body at a chapel service a few years ago, diluting the message of the Gospel and condoning the acceptance of “homosexual Christians.”  It is clear that the president and other leadership have no problem with the kind of message given that day.  They are compromisers of the truth and are filling the minds of students with an unbiblical message, in the name of “love.”
  3. ENC welcomes false teachers to speak at their chapels.  They have repeatedly had Tony Campolo to speak.  Campolo blatantly promoted mysticism to all the students and pastors in attendance the last time he spoke, and not one person seemed to care.  The college leadership personally told me they had no problem with Tony Campolo, in spite of my warnings and evidence of his unbiblical ideology.  Discernment is sorely lacking in the leadership at ENC.
  4. ENC is ecumenical in philosophy.  In a personal conversation my wife and I had with the college president, the chaplain, and the provost, President Corlis McGee referred to Roman Catholics as “brothers and sisters in Christ.”  How can that be, when the Roman Catholic Church teaches a works-based gospel, that you have do good works in order to be saved?  Sadly, this trend is happening throughout the Nazarene denomination.  ENC even lists several Roman Catholic churches in its list of suggested churches on their website.  My father, who was rescued by Jesus from Roman Catholic bondage, would be in tears at knowing what is happening now.
  5. ENC promotes many books by emergent church leaders, such as Rob Bell, Brian McLaren, and others.  You will find these books in the college bookstore, along with Roman Catholic bibles, including one that even has a rosary inside it.

There is much more I could tell you, but I want to keep this fairly brief.  You can read many articles about ENC and the other Nazarene colleges at my blog (see link at the end), including the entire transcript of the chaplain’s message about homosexuality.  I do not recommend a single Nazarene university today, because all of them have been compromised by false teaching, some very severely.

Since what you are considering is Christian colleges, I recommend that you stay away from Eastern Nazarene College if you are opposed to one or more of the things I listed.  If a definition of a Christian college is that it is one that upholds the very basic principles and teachings of the Bible while providing a good education, then ENC does not live up to that standard.  The school no longer even lives up to Nazarene standards, yet calls itself Nazarene.  This is clear misrepresentation of a product.  For example, you will not see any clear statements from the leadership that the Bible is the inerrant, infallible word of God- because they do not believe it is.  Instead, you will most likely hear of seminars and lectures that promote social justice and good works, diminishing the true teachings of Scripture and changing the real Gospel into another gospel.

Many people have told me, “hey, its better that they go to a “Christian” school than a secular school.  Well, at a secular school what you would be up against is a worldly philosophy that is unpretentious, and most would not even care that you are Christian anyway.  You will definitely know your “enemy” if you go to a secular school.  But at most “Christian” schools today, you will find that the enemy is from within, and you will discover also that the enemy is very deceiving.  The apostle Paul wrote that Satan and his servants appear to us as ministers of light, and thus they will work to deceive you, or at least oppress you in your Christian faith.  Is that what you really want at a “Christian” school?

Question 3: What Christian colleges would you recommend?

Most “Christian” universities today promote and teach spiritual formation, which is another word for contemplative spirituality or mysticism.  There are really few that I can recommend just based on that fact, and even the ones I recommend need to be “inspected” before making the commitment.  At the minimum, if a Christian school does not clearly and boldly state their stand on Scripture as the word of God, then that school is suspect, and perhaps you need to look elsewhere.  The list I have made at the end is not exhaustive, but are schools I have either researched, or they have been recommended by trusted Christian friends.  In the end, you must do your own homework before making that final decision. I realize some of them may not have the programs that you are seeking, so some of them may be ruled out for that reason.

Conclusion:

Short of God’s intervention with an infusion of godly administrators who are dedicated to real Biblical principles, schools such as Eastern Nazarene College are doomed to continue down a path of corrupted teaching which will damage many in their faith, and divert many others from the real Jesus.

In the end, it is clearly a decision you will need to make yourself with much prayer and with guidance from God’s word.  Should you decide that you can weather the storm and go to ENC, you must acknowledge that you are going to be surrounded by wolves in sheep’s clothing, while at the same time your money is benefiting a school that is not upholding biblical principles.  You will need to realize that the need to put on God’s armor is even greater when you attend a “Christian” school, and that the very people who are entrusted with your spiritual health and guidance, may be the ones who will do their best to undermine it.

May the Lord grant you wisdom.

Manny

 

Here are some recommended Christian Colleges that do not teach spiritual formation nor promote the emerging church, as far as I know. You will have to research them to see if they offer programs that you are interested in.

 

Geneva College

 

Bob Jones University (South Carolina)
Pensacola Christian College (Florida)
Allegheny Wesleyan College (Salem, OH)
Appalachian Bible College (West Virginia)
Atlanta Baptist College (Georgia)
Berean Bible Institute (Wisconsin)
Bible Missionary Institute (Rock Island, IL)
Boston Baptist College (Massachusetts)
Cornerstone Bible Institute (South Dakota)
Faith Baptist Bible College & Seminary (Iowa)
Faith Bible School (Mitchell, SD)
God’s Bible School (Cincinnati, OH)
Heartland Baptist Bible College ( Oklahoma)
His Hill Bible School and Camp (Texas)
Hobe Sound Bible College, Florida)
International Baptist College (Arizona)
Northwest Indian Bible Institute (Alberton, MT)
Penn View Bible Institute (Penns Creek, PA)
Union Bible College (Westfield, IN)

REFERENCE ARTICLES:

Corey McPherson’s message at ENC:
http://reformednazarene.wordpress.com/nazarene-denomination-losing-its-way/homosexuality-what-does-god-think/

Tony Campolo:
http://reformednazarene.wordpress.com/2010/10/31/false-prophet-tony-campolo-promotes-doctrines-of-demons-to-enc-students/

http://reformednazarene.wordpress.com/2010/11/03/tony-campolos-thin-places-occultic-christianity/

ENC’s Local Church Recommendation page:
http://www1.enc.edu/spiritual-development/local-area-churches/