We who preach the gospel must not think of ourselves as public relations agents sent to establish good will between Christ and the world. We must not imagine ourselves commissioned to make Christ acceptable to big business, the press, the world of sports or modern education. We are not diplomats but prophets, and our message is not a compromise but an ultimatum. A.W. Tozer
Therefore let God-inspired Scripture decide between us; and on whichever side be found doctrines in harmony with the word of God, in favor of that side will be cast the vote of truth. --Basil of Caesarea
Once you learn to discern, there's no going back. You will begin to spot the lie everywhere it appears.

I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has strengthened me, because He considered me faithful, putting me into service. 1 Timothy 1:12

Wednesday, June 23, 2021

We Need Maturity in Worship


Not until the advent of CCW in the Sonnenkinder spirit, however, has one generation sought to revise Christian worship to suit its juvenile style and lead its fathers and mothers and the Church as a whole into the fantasy of prolonged adolescence. … Maturity in worship is perhaps what the 21st Century Church needs most. The Church is sorely in need of adults who will lead the children to maturity.


Craig S. Bulkeley, Hope for the Children of the Sun, pg. 26-27

Monday, June 21, 2021

Some Unbiblical Calvinist Ideas


Back in January 2010 I posted an article about my church experience (including my wife after marriage), and in 2015 I added a post-script "update" about how we left our most recent assembly after over a decade because they went market-driven. 


Well, I never got around to adding to that update, but that church we began going to in the fall of 2014 ended up with another problem; NOISE. While the teaching at our "new" church was solid, the music was sometimes "feel good" and the sound kept getting louder and louder. I complained about it to the "worship pastor" and he said he would do what he could but never did. SO I appealed to the teaching pastor (the "head" pastor, so to speak) and he said that wasn't his control. I was very disappointed with that response, as you can well imagine. I began wearing hearing aids in January 2019 and the sound volume really affected me (and apparently a lot of older people who would go into the hallway/entrance during the music). The live band didn't seem to care how their volume affected many people. So I told the pastor that we'd have to find somewhere else to worship.


Well, we had good friends who attended the local PCA church in our small town: 

1. One family had found it when they left the same church we had left in 2001 (due to the sin in the church not being addressed). 

2. Another family we had met back at our very first church in Iowa (December 1995-Summer 1996) had finally got fed up with that one getting more market-driven and seeker sensitive. 

3. The other very good friends, a couple, left the church we attended from 2002—he had been the music leader there before they decided to get a “rock and roll” leader— and bounced around to a few churches before finding this PCA. 


Now, none of us were Calvinists (#2 above became so), but this PCA had a very good pastor with good teachings and a caring heart. When the couple (#3 above) had a soiree in 2018 they invited their PCA pastor. Nice guy with a nice wife. I told the pastor that I didn't agree with Calvinism and he responded that a large number of the congregation didn't either but he wasn't bothered by that!  WOW. So in early 2019 we began attending the PCA church about 2 miles from home. 


It was very infrequently that the pastor had any specifically Calvinist teachings and when he did my wife and I (as well as others) just ignored it. But as a shepherd, we've not seen better. (Unfortunately, he and his wife moved to North Carolina last month to be near family and to take care of some health issues. So now we have an interim pastor while the search committee looks for a permanent one.) 


My readers have been apprised of my opinion that the primary Calvinist doctrines identified by the acronym TULIP are unbiblical. What I've never understood is that some of the best Christian apologists are Calvinists and yet they don't apply their apologetics to their own Calvinist teachings!


Anyway, you may have noticed over the past two years that I've had some short articles exposing some Calvinist errors; these were brought about by something that was raised in the church that particular week.


So for this post I'm going to show three other interesting/unbiblical teachings in Calvinism.


1. We normally have communion every week. However, when our pastor was on vacation if the substitute was not ordained we couldn't have communion. You see, you just can't have communion without an ordained pastor. I can't seem to find that rule in the Bible.


2. Our interim pastor had his first official day today, but he is not ordained in THIS presbytery so we didn't have Communion. He is ordained in his Georgia presbytery but that doesn't count. He now has to sit before the local presbytery to be ordained here, and until that happens we have no communion. This guy has some good education and has his doctorate but he can't carry his ordination with him. Can you see the apostles needing ordination as they traveled from country to country?!?


3. Now the big one for today. We very often cite parts of the Westminster Confession or Catechism as part of the liturgy. Normally it's just standard biblical doctrine but today's "Larger Catechism" question and answer led me to refuse to cite it. The Question (#123) asked what the 5th Commandment is and the answer was cited from the O.T. So far, so good. Then there was Question #124: To whom does father and mother refer in the fifth commandment?


Well, I thought it was pretty plain that it referred to father and mother, as does the citation of the Commandment in Ephesians 6:1-4. But not so with the Calvinist; they have an unbiblical idea as to whom this commandment refers. Let me cite the Catechism:

Father and mother refer not just to our parents" but to everyone who is older or more talented than we are, and specifically to those whom God has ordained to be over us in positions of authority, whether in our family, the church, or civil government. 

HUH?!?!? How do they read all this into a simple commandment about honoring one's parents?!?!


It gets even crazier. The next question (#125) asks: Why are those over us referred to as father and mother? 

The short answer is that they aren't!  But the answer given left me figuratively scratching my head in wonder:

The terms father and mother remind those in authority that, like fathers and mothers, they are responsible for and should act in a loving and tender way, appropriately reflecting their particular relationship, toward those under them; and those under them are also encouraged to accept their authority more willingly and cheerfully, as if they were their parents.  

Why is it that I can't find this meaning of father and mother in the Bible?


No, that's not the end of it. Q.126 asks: What is the general scope of the fifth commandment? 

I would respond that it is about honoring/obeying, etc, one's father and mother, but they have a different response, which you won't find even hinted at in Scripture:

In general, the fifth commandment outlines our obligations to others, depending upon our particular relationship to them, whether over, under, or equal to them.  

WRONG: it outlines only our obligation to parents.


The Catechism continues in this vein in regards to honor owed to those in authority over us and what kind of sins can be against them.


I agree that the N.T. outlines our duty to those in authority but you will find those duties in Romans 13:1-7 and 2 Peter 2:1-3.


I have the feeling that if I was to read the entire Catechism I'd find more unbiblical additions to what the Bible really says. This is a problem with so many mainline denominations as well as independent churches: they feel they have to add to God's Word to control their people! 


Be sure that what you are being taught aligns with Scripture or else ignore it.

Saturday, June 19, 2021

False Teaching About Prospective Spouses


Two years ago I posted an article about marriage in which I examined the "teachings" of another blogger (who I will refer to as "Mr. Marriage Killer" -- or just MMK). When I commented on the article I cited in my blogpost, MMK blocked me from commenting. (I still looked at his blog now and then out of curiosity, to see if his ideology in regards to marriage had changed or if he had found a spouse but with this latest nonsense I am finished with him). However, he recently wrote another of those articles which tell you what the qualifications for marriage should be. Now, in this particular one he emphasized that what he wrote were HIS goals and qualifications he needed for a wife, but the implication, and some of the verbiage in the article, make it plain that he believes this should apply to everyone.


Well, as with my previous article citing his silliness, I am not going to give a link to his site because I think he can do more harm than good to anyone with little discernment. Let me also note what MMK says about himself: 

I find myself now in my early 40s, with a 6-figure income and a nearly 7-figure net worth.  (Money is high in his priorities.)


"I favor the old-earth (14 billion-year universe)" -- his perspective for all his apologetics. He may have good apologetics for basic doctrine but he has no discernment when it comes to accepting the "scientific" ideology of an old earth (something with no proof but lots of speculations).


Okay, let's look at some things MMK said in this particular post I’m examining here.


Regarding why it is important for a wife to have a STEM degree:

A wife who has completed high school and college courses in math, science, engineering and/or technology will know how to either homeschool our kids, or monitor their homework and grades so they achieve good academic results.

Gee, how did my wife and I homeschool our kids without a STEM degree? Now, my son wanted to apprentice as a woodworker so I can't use him as an example of his education level (although he is an outstanding craftsman with wood), but when my daughter went to college (for a double major in elementary education and music) she performed at the top of her class and stayed on the Dean's list for 5 years, graduating with honors.


STEM equips her to argue apologetics from her experience of using reason, evidence, reality-based testing

Studying apologetics does not require a STEM degree, and my wife has plenty of experience in using reason, evidence, and reality!


STEM degrees are a path to high paying jobs. Women who are debt-free are better to marry, because they don’t delay the process of buying a house and having children. Any kind of debt has to be paid off first. I’m not looking for a big spender, I’m looking for someone who can earn and save. The more children we can afford to have, the bigger our influence will be. Also, women who choose STEM demonstrate that they can delay gratification, and not be a slave to FOMO, YOLO, “living in the moment”, etc."

My wife wasn't looking to get higher-paying jobs--she was looking to marry and be a wife and mother. We bought a house 1 1/2 years after we married because of MY employment; the only "delay" was because I was working towards a better job and then in training for it. Lack of large amounts of money did not delay our having children. But notice the reason he wants all this -- "influence."  So you need the STEM and all the other requirements of his to have influence? My wife and I have influenced one heck of a lot of people over the years and I just don't know how were able to do this!


While MMK claims these are just HIS goals and not requirements for others, his comments about women in general is that none are eligible for marriage without fulfilling the requirements that he sets out.:

First, I hope this post convinces women to start planning for their marriages early. You need to know things that matter for two reasons: 1) to attract a quality man, 2) to evaluate men and filter out the good ones. That means you need to know things like apologetics, politics, etc. Having money helps to buy learning material."


And then he makes this comment about ALL men and how they should seek a marriageable woman:

Second, I hope this post convinces men to stop choosing women based on youth and beauty. Your choice of wife will have a huge effect on your influence. Choose a capable, competent partner who complements your strengths with different strengths. Men spend their days in the workplace, where we cannot say much about religion and politics. If you marry an intelligent conservative Christian woman, she can be your voice to the university, the church, and the public square. Not to mention raising effective children. Therefore, choose wisely.


So, while MMK claims these are just HIS goals, he makes sure that all men and women know what, in his opinion, proper requirements are needed for a spouse.

 

I knew he wouldn't post any comment I made, but I wanted to once again let him know just how foolish and absurd his qualifications are so I posted the following (and, yes, I got a bit "hot under the collar" with him because his teaching can ruin a lot of lives):


I know you won’t publish this because I’ve told you the truth before about your asinine ideology for a STEM-educated bridal selection. You refuse to publish because what I’ve said is the truth and you are too arrogant to accept correction.


But I’m going to still tell you that you are full of crap. You worship STEM degrees and will never marry. I have been married 45 years to a very smart woman who can hold her own with apologetics (taught by me), is a very good shot (taught by me) and spent a career as a wife and homemaker raising our children (including homeschooling). She graduated high school with honors but spent only two years in college, working towards a degree in horticulture when she dropped out to marry me.


You consider any such woman as a poor candidate for marriage because she didn’t have your precious STEM degree. Your telling everyone what a good marriage candidate IS will leave many men unmarried. You have no experience at marriage (and probably not any experience at any solid relationship with a female) and yet you dare tell everyone else what sort of woman is marriageable.


I was attracted first to my wife because she was pretty and was interesting to talk to when I met her. So I asked her out and found what a wonderful personality she had, as well as being a solid Christian with conservative values — and that was just after she graduated high school. In your estimation I should never have asked her out but here we are 47 years after meeting and spending most of our two years prior to marriage in a long-distance relationship of letters and phone calls (I was in the Army and on leave when we met). What a wonderful marriage I would have missed out on by following your absurd rules.


Oh, and you would also consider me a poor match for a woman seeking a husband because I never went to college. Instead I spent 5 years serving my country and then worked my way into a career in aviation.


Not everyone has the desire for STEM degrees, but you consider those kinds of people pretty much worthless for marriage.


He emailed me a response:

I'm not replying to your comment to you, because you were not able to understand what I wrote nor to reply to in a constructive way.


One of the reasons why people go to college, and work in serious jobs like engineering, is so that they develop the mental capacity to separate logic from personal concerns, and focus on solving problems. In my personal life, I've developed the ability to do that. You have not, and anything I said to you could not be processed rationally for that reason. I presented goals and a plan to achieve those goals. You could not process that, because you lack the intellectual ability and the practical experience to do so. Instead, you took it as personal criticism, and attacked me personally with insults. It's sad that you have not used your time to develop the ability to think rationally and persuade others whom you disagree with.


I have nothing to say about you personally, or your personal situation. I have goals, and I laid out a plan to achieve them. I have tremendous success as a legal immigrant, an investor, an engineer, and a mentor of influential Christians who have gone on to make a difference in the world. If you're [sic] answer to that is to insult and abuse me, then so much the worse for you. I could make you into something better if you didn't take that attitude. But you have to want to be better, and you don't. You want to destroy.


Notice a few things:

1. He stated that I had not developed "the mental capacity to separate logic from personal concerns."  Really? And how did he discern that? I've actually studied logic, and anyone with common sense can "separate logic from personal concerns."  He also stated that I would be unable to rationally process anything he said, that I "lack the intellectual ability and and the practical experience to do so."  Hmm. So without a STEM degree I'm just ignorant and irrational.  I'd say that is a personal insult.

 

2. He said I took his goals as a personal insult. WRONG. I took what his last statements about men and women in general as an insult to everyone who doesn't agree with his goals. His statements about men and women do say something about me personally and every other Christian man and woman who haven't met his qualifications. I used my personal life as an example of what is wrong with his teachings.


3. Notice his statement about his life: I have tremendous success as a legal immigrant, an investor, an engineer, and a mentor of influential Christians who have gone on to make a difference in the world" -- as if that has any bearing on marriage qualifications.


4. If you're [sic] answer to that is to insult and abuse me, then so much the worse for you. I'm trying to figure out where I insulted him or abused him. I did say he is arrogant, as demonstrated by his idea that HE, an unmarried man in his 40s, has the temerity to tell others what they should seek in a mate. And I noted that he was unteachable because he refused to accept that his marriage ideology is WRONG when he says all men/women should follow it. Yet the first thing he does is insult me!


5. I could make you into something better if you didn't take that attitude. But you have to want to be better, and you don't. WOW! Talk about arrogance and insulting!!


6. You want to destroy.  Really? Where did that come from? The only thing I want to destroy is MMK’s teaching others that his way of thinking about marriage is the only proper way for Christian men and women!


So I responded to this (and then blocked him):

I have plenty of ability for logical discussions, but your arrogance does not permit logic to penetrate. You have long stated what the proper woman would be for marriage, and have long claimed that those are the ONLY proper characteristics for a Christian man to seek.


My point has always been that to make those requirements standard for Christian men is just plain wrong. That can be a personal goal for you, which is just fine and why you will never marry, but you always tell men that this it the ONLY right way, and that women who do not possess a STEM degree are not worth pursuing.  Your attack on me claiming I don’t have the ability to think rationally just demonstrates your arrogance.  I don’t want to destroy, I want to stop you from destroying other people’s lives by telling them they are worthless without a STEM degree.


You have no idea what my ministries have been (or my wife’s ministries for that matter), you have no idea what struggles I had to surmount to get a better life than my parents had, and what difference we have made in other people’s lives. Being an immigrant doesn’t make your struggles any different from citizens who were born into bad situations. So get off your high horse of being offended by the truth that you are worshipping STEM degrees. I did NOT “abuse” you but you have made yourself a victim by me demonstrating that your personal goals are not what you should tell people are the right and proper goals for everyone. You denigrate everyone who is not interested in college degrees of any sort (not acceptable marriage partners). And that is WRONG.


Well I saw a couple other comments on his post, which I just have to share:


Great post and I hope you get your hearts desire.

An issue, though, is maybe the person who doesn’t have a degree in any kind was because she was unable to go to school. Maybe God had her in HIS school of life and she learned various lessons through various trials.

I understand your point, but it seems very strict and kind of putting God in a box. Life happens and He works everything out for our good. A good wife is God made and not degree made. Just a different perspective.

But I’m sure wherever she is God is getting her ready for you as well and you’ll check all her boxes.


And MMK's response?

Thank you for your opinion. In this meantime, I mentor young Christians and build them up.

WOW!


Next:

Between what you want in a woman for a wife, and what Laura

thinks a woman should want in a man, there is going to be a lot of single people in the future!!!

Google the “Sheconomy” !


In defense of Laura, she is merely pointing out necessary and proper behaviors and is 100% correct in my opinion. (MMK had a link to go to her site.)


One person said he didn't see a woman with a STEM degree as marriageable because she'd be after a career rather than being a wife and mother!


For some more evidence that MMK does indeed promote STEM for marriage for ALL (not just his personal goals), here's his rant about Tim Tebow choosing a wife based on looks (according to MMK):


...if you want to marry a real Christian women [sic], I recommend looking for women whose lives show a consistent, multi-year record of studying apologetics and engaging for conservative causes in the public square. And again, it’s just safer to prefer women with STEM degrees. Women with STEM degrees have the emotivism and narcissism drummed out of them. STEM graduates know that no amount of intuition and wishing will make a program compile and run and generate correct output.


The general point here is that men are stupid – especially when they are young and don’t realize how important it is for them to choose wisely, when it comes to a bride. They imagine that because a woman is good looking, that must mean that she has a good Christian worldview – a worldview that includes a commitment to studying apologetics, and integrating Christianity with economics, politics, etc. Guess what, stupid men? Unless she has read people like Lee Strobel and J. Warner Wallace, she doesn’t know whether her Christian faith is true or not. Unless she has read people like Thomas Sowell and Jay Richards, she has no idea how her Christian faith integrates with economics or politics. Unless she has read people like Scott Klusendorf and Ryan Anderson, she isn’t really pro-life or pro-marriage – not beyond the level of feelings, she is not.You can’t sing your way to a Christian worldview, Te-Beau. Somebody needs to hand T-Bonehead my list of courting questions. I can guarantee you that Miss Universe would not be able to answer any of them.


Pretty girls are always used to getting attention from men for free, they never have to do anything they don’t feel like doing – and that is the exact opposite of what you need in a wife and mother of your children. Women who are less focused on their appearance actually have to care about helping and supporting a man in his plan to change the world with his marriage and family. So, they busy themselves before marriage getting STEM degrees, staying chaste, working with kids to practice, stay out of debt, building up a nest egg, and trying to make the society as Christian-friendly as possible through apologetics, activism, charity and political activism. She wants the world to be a safe place for a man to marry and raise a family in, and she wants to communicate to him through her serious decision-making that she will be a help to him, and not a loose cannon on deck.


Notice the arrogance of  MMK's assumptions about all men and women!


In another post MMK wrote the following:

My view is that Christian men should not be allowed to talk to women – even to ask them the time of day or for directions – until they have a STEM degree, 2 years of private sector work experience, all debts paid off, a car and some savings. ...  If a man is talking about marriage without having taken steps to get a STEM degree, STEM private sector work history, and an investment account that is added to every month, then he has no business talking to a woman about marriage. 

And yet he stated in his email that those were just HIS goals and not directed at me (or anyone else) personally.


So what is the conclusion? People like MMK are dangerous to believers who are seeking advise on what to look for in a spouse; they will end up like him -- single. People like MMK are dangerous to those who do not have the ability or desire to get STEM degrees because they see such people as pretty much worthless (Jill says, "Just wait until his toilet stops up"). And people like MMK are dangerous because they give others a false idea what Christians think about marriage.

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Suffering for Being a Christian


Dear friends, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that has come on you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice inasmuch as you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed. 


If you are insulted because of the name of Christ, you are blessed, for the Spirit of glory and of God rests on you. If you suffer, it should not be as a murderer or thief or any other kind of criminal, or even as a meddler. However, if you suffer as a Christian, do not be ashamed, but praise God that you bear that name. For it is time for judgment to begin with God’s household; and if it begins with us, what will the outcome be for those who do not obey the gospel of God? And, “If it is hard for the righteous to be saved, what will become of the ungodly and the sinner?”


So then, those who suffer according to God’s will should commit themselves to their faithful Creator and continue to do good.


1 Peter 4:12-19 (NIV)


Friday, June 11, 2021

Good and Evil

First, the good stuff:

Sheol, Hades, and Gehenna: are there differences?


Solid teaching about the tithe. I’ve said too many times that Christians do NOT tithe. (The article also exposes Bill Johnson as a false teacher.)


The New Apostolic Reformation is an heretical teaching by false prophets and false apostles. Learn their language.


To Be or Not to Be Accountable.  False prophets need to be exposed, period.


Ah, now the bad and downright evil:


Proof that the Pope does not represent Christ or God. The man has gone full-blown LEFTIST.


The Roman Catholic Church is more and more supportive of sexual perverts and deviancy. Proof that they do not speak for God. They really need to start excommunicating these so-called “Catholics.”  Especially Jesuits who are supposedly more devout!


Catholics have historically voted Demokrat, for some absurd reason. Well, this is what you get when you vote Demokrat, whether Christian or Catholic.


The blatant lies and false teachings behind the fraudulent Bible translation known as “The Passion Translation.” The video is long and I had to go back to it several times to finish listening while doing other things. However, the information and exposure of the fraud is well worth the time.


Clint Adams has a review of one of Jen Wilkin’s books. Just another example of her poor teaching.


About that “transgender” ELCA “pastor.”  A very good examination.


I keep warning you about Tim Keller.


Another false teacher I hadn’t previously heard of — Jennie Allen.


Andy Stanley is a vicious wolf.


False teacher Joseph Prince.  Followed by, false teacher Priscilla Shirer. And let’s just remind everyone that T.D. Jakes is also a false teacher, as well as a racist.


Gwen Shamblin, of the cultic “Weigh Down Workshop” and “Remnant Fellowship” was killed in a plane crash.  Two articles worth perusing about her:  “Weighed Down With False Doctrine” and “Weigh Down Workshop a Cult?


CRU (i.e., Campus Crusade for Christ) is on a death spiral.


A great argument against women priests/pastors!


Stay away from World Vision.


One bit of Mormonism I hadn’t given much thought to is their belief that God ordained the Fall. Well, in this regard they are just like Calvinists; Calvinists say God has foreordained everything!

Friday, June 4, 2021

If this affects you, you'll have to do something different.

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Wednesday, May 26, 2021

Agglomeration

Lots of things to expose today so hang in for a wild ride.


Except for the Papist teachings about Mary, this is a pretty good article about refuting the claim that God raped Mary.


A warning about, and exposure of, “glory clouds.”


Another example of the bizarre teaching at Bethel.


Rick Warren is a false teacher and his “church” is led by wolves; and the people in the pews/chairs are goats.


The Southern Baptist Convention has long been spiraling down into apostasy. Look at how many of their churches have used women preachers. Here is Rick Warren justifying this apostasy by twisting the Scripture.


And then there is the SBC’s “Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission” which is playing fast and loose with the Scriptures to support deviant sexuality.


ELCA long ago left orthodoxy; this is how far they’ve fallen.


“Christian” publishers promote apostasy and heresy.  I’ve said this time and time again.


False teacher Lou Engle has jumped on the racist Black Lives Matter bandwagon. 


Lisa Bevere — just another woman like Beth Moore; claims of hearing from God and claims of women should be pastors.


Steven Furtick — this guy is horrid!


Another bad guy to stay away from: Lance Wallnau.


Typical Joel Osteen; enriching himself with books with false gospels. The man is a narcissist. 


Franklin Graham ignores all the dangers of the COVID-19 vaccines and lies about it being analogous to the healing of Jesus.  Like the back-stabbing Jews under Hitler, Graham wants to help the government against Christians.


If you are a fan of “The Chosen” series, please think with more discernment.


Martin Luther is spinning in his grave.


All “prophets” who are using the term “blood moon” or other astronomical events for their prophecies (Cahn, Hagee, Blitz, et al) are FALSE prophets. Do not read them, do not listen to them, do not give them the time of day — they are wolves leading people astray. I fact, anyone who calls themselves a “prophet” is a false prophet, PERIOD!


The false gospel of Rachel Hollis.


Jen Wilkin is about as bad of a teacher as it gets.


Let’s end with a thought-provoking article, A popular phrase from the pit of Hell.