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

Monday, April 29, 2019

Was Mary Magdalene a Prostitute?

There is no evidence that the early church tried to tarnish Mary Magdalene’s reputation by making her out to be a prostitute. Any reference to her as a prostitute does not come from the Bible. Here is what we do know of Mary from the biblical record: Seven demons were cast out of her by Jesus (Luke 8:2); she witnessed the horror of the crucifixion (Matthew 27:32-56); she was present at the burial of Jesus (Matthew 27:57-61); she, along with two other women, went to anoint the body of Jesus (Mark 16:1), and she was the first person to see Jesus in his resurrected body (John 20:10-18).

Some have surmised that since her name and story appear immediately following the account of a prostitute, the two are one and the same woman (see Luke 7:36-8:2). But there is no biblical support for this conclusion. (Most historians agree that the reference to Mary Magdalene as a prostitute was started in the sixth century by Pope Gregory I). Still others have conjectured that she is the anonymous woman caught in adultery. There is no evidence to support that assumption, either. Some have guessed that she might have been a prostitute simply because she came from Magdala, which was often associated with prostitution. Once again, the Bible says no such thing. Any association of Mary of Magdala with either of the above-mentioned anonymous women would have been merely a result of conjecture--or very careless scholarship--probably dating to the Middle Ages, as opposed to a smear campaign.

James L. Garlow and Peter Jones, Cracking Da Vinci’s Code, pg.59-60

Friday, April 26, 2019

The Catholic Eucharist is Unbiblical

Not a single miracle in the Bible exists where all outward evidences reveal that nothing happened. Biblical miracles are always tangible and practical. … And at the Last Supper, the Lord took bread and wine at a table, not an altar. In the Bible, sacrifices were made on an altar, and God commanded the Jews that there was to be only one altar. 

[T]he consecrated wafer has been known to become moldy, corrupted, and rot if not ingested in a reasonable time. Of course, if the consecrated elements were truly Jesus’ body, this would be impossible. Repeatedly the Bible states that Jesus’ body would NOT experience corruption.

Roger Oakland with Jim Tetlow, Another Jesus? The Eucharistic Christ and the New Evangelization, pg. 59, 60, 96

Thursday, April 25, 2019

Jesus in the Eucharist?

If Jesus’ body, blood, soul, and divinity is with us in the Eucharist, the words “this do in remembrance of me” would make no sense. A memorial service is not held for someone who is in attendance, but rather for someone who has departed.

Roger Oakland with Jim Tetlow, Another Jesus? The Eucharistic Christ and the New Evangelization, pg. 51

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

John 6 and The Last Supper

It is imperative to recognize that John 6 does not deal directly with the Last Supper, or with the breaking of the bread. That’s worth repeating. John chapter 6 has nothing to do with the Last Supper! … John deals with the Last Supper starting in chapter 13, but chapter 6 is a separate subject. In chapter 6, Jesus never even alludes to a procedure to follow concerning the Communion meal, nor does He tell His disciples to institute a priesthood that will consecrate bread and turn it into his literal flesh. Nor does He teach here, or anywhere in the Bible, to worship His body and blood under the appearance of bread.

Roger Oakland with Jim Tetlow, Another Jesus? The Eucharistic Christ and the New Evangelization, pg. 47, 48

Sunday, April 21, 2019

Have A Blessed Easter

Christ the Lord is ris’n today. Alleluia!
Sons of men and angels say: Alleluia!
Raise your joys and triumphs high. Alleluia!
Sing, ye heav’ns, and earth, reply: Alleluia!

Lives again our glorious King. Alleluia!
Where, O death, is now they sting? Alleluia!
Dying once, He all doth save. Alleluia!
Where thy victory, O grave? Alleluia!

Love’s redeeming work is done. Alleluia!
Fought the fight, the battle won. Alleluia!
Death in vain forbids Him rise. Alleluia!
Christ has opened paradise. Alleluia!

Soar we now where Christ has led. Alleluia!
Foll’wing our exalted Head. Alleluia!
Made like Him, like Him we rise. Alleluia!
Ours the cross, the grave, the skies. Alleluia!

Charles Wesley

Saturday, April 20, 2019

The Old Cross vs The New Cross

If I see aright, the cross of popular evangelicalism is not the cross of the New Testament. It is, rather, a new bright ornament upon the bosom of a self-assured and carnal Christianity. The old cross condemned; the new cross amuses. The old cross destroyed confidence in the flesh; the new cross encourages it.

A.W. Tozer, cited by Gary Gilley, This Little Church Went to Market, pg.47

Friday, April 19, 2019

Some Recommended Good Reading

Who was St. Patrick, and should Christians celebrate St. Patrick’s Day?  Patrick was a “proto-protestant,” and not a Catholic.  I used to wear an orange shirt to work on St. Patty’s Day, with a British Union Jack on the pocket!

The cost of leaving cults and false teachings.

Regular readers (and new ones) have perhaps noticed that I don’t normally address the creation/evolution debate except from a biblical point of view, using proper hermeneutical principals. I also will expose as false teachers those who espouse progressive creation, theistic evolutionism, or any other old earth creation nonsense. Once in a great while I will slip and make note of scientific fallacy, but that is rare. For those looking for good scientific arguments there is Answers In Genesis, the Institute for Creation Research, and many other ministries with solid scientists who are young earth creationists. I will also point you to a site by a fellow blogger who DOES like to spend time with examining the scientific evidence for young earth creationism and against evolutionism, and here’s an example of the latter. Jesse also has excellent articles exposing the errors of Roman Catholicism, as well as other general apologetics issues; you may enjoy visiting his blog. 

An examination of the Jehovah’s Witness idea of Jesus’ resurrection — bizarre.

Some good responses to atheists’ “proof” that God cannot exist.

It Was Not So From the Beginning. Same-sex attraction is sin.

How to demonstrate to Jehovah’s Witnesses that Jesus died on a cross, not a stake.

Using proper hermeneutics with Seventh-day Adventists.

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

More Wolves and False Teachings

Timothy and Kathy Keller — ruining the church.

More about Francis Chan, and this ISN’T satire! Chan gets worse and worse.Take the time for a more in-depth look at the situation here. If that one doesn’t make you totally avoid Chan at any cost, then you aren’t paying attention.

When socialist, leftist “Christians” abuse Scripture for their agendas. Since no one living now was enslaved, nor were anyone living now enslavers, how do we determine who pays reparations and to whom do they pay? Actually, shouldn’t the Africans who sold the slaves be the primary ones responsible?

It’s getting worse than Sodom and Gomorrah out there.

Sozo is dangerous and totally unbiblical, and was developed by false teachers.

Just because it claims to be a Christian institution, that doesn’t mean it really is.

Bill Johnson and Bethel Church continue to prove they are a cult of unbelievers.

Homosexualists are invading the church, and are being given platforms for discussing family issues!

Why do so many worship leaders look so gay?  Because they are wolves.

In my opinion, only wolves would use a bar for “church.”

These students are apparently NOT real Christians.

Brian Houston continues to PROVE why he is a dangerous wolf, and that Hillsong is nothing more than a cultish goat-pen.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Personal Bible Notes: Romans

Refer to my 9/25/18 post about the margin notes in my Bible, and why I decided to share them on this blog.

1:3 “according to the flesh”: This statement is unnecessary if Jesus was merely a man.
1:7 “Grace…peace”:  “Grace” is Greek, “peace” is Jewish.
1:8 “telling”: This word actually limits the intent; Paul lives the gospel, which includes “telling.”
1:14: “barbarians”: These didn’t know Greek or Latin.

2:25ff: “circumcision” represents faith.
3:27-31: This section is the outline for chapter 4.

4:2: Abraham was before the Law.
4:16-18: The faith was not in his inability to have a child (he doubted that) but God’s ability to make him a father of nations.
6:3-5: Baptism is by immersion.

8:2 “law”: the word here means “principle.”
8:8: refers to unbelievers.
8:9-11: The Spirit lives in you if you are a believer. The Spirit of Christ is the Spirit of God.
8:14: Only Christians are God’s children.
8:19-22: The Earth is under corruption.
8:29: “foreknew”—NOT “fore-ordained”
8:30: “predestined,” i.e. planned for.

Chapters 9 through 11: about nations, not individuals, chosen for service, not for salvation.

Chapter 9: Israel’s past.
9:13: Israel vs Edomites; Israel chosen, Edomites enemy.
9:15: reference is to the aftermath of calf worship. Despite Israel’s sin, Moses asked to see God’s glory. God’s mercy to Moses over idolaters.
9:21ff: “Clay” is Abraham: One part, Isaac, for honor-chosen; One part, Ishmael—not chosen. Could also be Israel at the calf incident; objects of wrath being the idolaters.

Chapter 10: Israel’s present.

Chapter 11: Israel’s future.
11:13-24: The trunk is not Israel, the tree is the place of spiritual blessings. The branches are not saved but Israel and gentiles. The root is Abraham’s faith.

12:1 “urge”: literally, “exhort”
12:19: see 13:4b

15:18-19: Paul was personally inspired, and confirmed by signs and wonders.

Monday, April 15, 2019

Some Items Needing Homes; Will be sent for free!

Looking for homes for the following (please specify):

One copy left of PFO Journal with articles about Todd Bentley and Beth Moore.

The following Cassette tapes are recordings of classes or plenary sessions at various apologetics conferences we’ve attended.

Cassette tape of an apologetics conference plenary session, Islam Exposed, taught by Dave Hunt.

Cassette tape of an apologetics conference class: Are the RLDS Christian or Mormon? Taught by Colleen Ralson.

Cassette tape of an apologetics conference class: What Shall We Do with the RLDS church? Taught by Jason R. Smith.

Cassette tape of an apologetics conference class: Witnessing to Masons, taught by Jim Valentine.

Cassette tape of an apologetics conference class: Reasoning From the Scriptures With the Masons, taught by Ron Rhodes.

VHS tape with about 11-13 minute clips showing the demonic nonsense of the old Pensacola/Brownsville Rival, and the false prophecies against Hank Hanegraaff by John Kilpatrick. 

As with previous books I’ve given away, this offer is only for those in the U.S.A. — due to postage costs elsewhere!  You can comment on this post requesting it with your address (comments are moderated and your address will not be posted) or you can email me your address at jude3.gctwm@yahoo.com.  As always, I determine the “winner” by what comes in my inbox first, and I will notify you either by return email or by a comment on the post. (Be patient for a response; I’m not on the computer all the time.)

Are You a Victim of Deceitful Schemers?

The perfect spiritual victims for deceitful schemers are those with warm hearts and empty heads. The church is full of folks today who have “a zeal for God, but not in accordance with knowledge” (Rom. 10:2). They have a form of godliness but it is not biblically grounded. They are seeking feelings and experiences but not doctrinal truth. They are content to attend churches that do not expound the Scriptures, just as long as they are emotionally moved by the music or drama and comforted by relevant programs.

Gary E. Gilley, Is That You Lord? Pg.23

Saturday, April 13, 2019

Playtime in the Church

Children’s ministries have for years focused on playtime and coloring; teens have been treated like large children who need to be entertained with contemporary music and a multitude of games and activities; adults are not to be bored with biblical exposition and theology. These practices stem from the late sixties, when the rebellious and spoiled baby-boomers…began to reshape everything (including the church) in their own image. Two generations of Christians have come and are moving through the church, many of whom have never experienced what a biblical church should be. So far removed are many Christians from the New Testament paradigm that many do not know that anything else exists or ever existed.

Gary E. Gilley with Jay Wegter, This Little Church Had None: A Church in Search of the Truth, by pg.222

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Did Jesus Go to Hell?

“He Descended Into Hell”

It should read, “He descended into Hades.” We have a similar necessary correction in Acts 2:27 which is a quotation of Psalm 16:10. In the Authorized Version that is cited in the form: “Thou wilt not leave my soul in hell,” but the Revised Standard Version and the New English Bible both have correctly: “Thou wilt not abandon my soul to Hades,” and Moffatt in his translation simply uses the word “the grave.”

The word in Hebrew is Sheol: and Sheol is not hell; Sheol is simply the land of the dead. The Jews had no full doctrine of immortality of a life after death. The believed that the souls of all men, or rather men themselves, went to Sheol which was a grey, shadowy land, in which men moved like ghosts, in which there was neither light, nor color, nor joy, and in which the shades of men were separated alike from God and from their fellow-men. Sheol is simply the place of the dead, with none of the connotation of torture and punishment which the word hell includes.

… The Greeks had the same idea, and Hades in Greek was also the place of the dead. To be quite accurate, it is likely that Hades was not originally a place but a person, for the original phrase is “the House of Hades,” and certainly in the Revelation Hades is a person. [Revelation 6:8, 20:13, 20:14]. Hades was the king of the dead and it was to his shadowy house all men went.

When the New Testament wishes to express the place of punishment it uses the word Gehenna. It is better to lose your hand or eye than with your whole body to be thrown into Gehenna (Matthew5:29-30). It is not necessary to fear those who can kill the body; it is necessary to fear him who can cast soul and body into Gehenna (Matthew 10:28).

Now Gehenna is Ge Hinnom, the Valley of Hinnom outside Jerusalem. It was in that valley that in the ancient days those who worshipped Moloch the fire-god had burned their children in the fire as an offering to him. Josiah had stopped that impious worship and had made the Valley of Hinnom desecrated territory (2 Kings 23:10). It had then become the official rubbish dump, the public incinerator of Jerusalem. It smouldered continuously, and in it a loathsome species of worm bred and multiplied. That terrible valley, a kind of valley of destruction, stood as the popular idea of hell..

The two words are quite distinct. Sheol is simply the place of the dead. Gehenna is the place of the punishment of he wicked. Sheol is not hell, but Gehenna is.

This sentence of the creed therefore had originally nothing to do with hell. It simply meant that Jesus went to the place of the dead. In other words, it was merely another and vivid way of saying again that he was really and truly dead. 

The Apostles’ Creed for Everyman, by William Barclay, pg.121-122

So, yes, Jesus descended into the grave, but “NO” he didn’t descend into hell.  Numerous Word of Faith teachers use this statement from the Apostles’ Creed (and the Athanasian Creed) to promote their teachings that Jesus went to Hell, and was abused by the demons there, to pay for our sins. This, of course, is nothing less than rank heresy.  If these creeds were properly translated, the WOF gang would have nothing to hang their heresy on!

Bible passages which support the idea that Jesus descended to the grave and not hell:
Acts 2:27, citing Psalm 16:10.
Romans 10:6-7 (the abyss/pit is another name for Sheol)
Ephesians 4:8-10 (referring to Psalm 68:18)
Philippians 2:9-11 (“under the earth”)
1 Peter 3:18-20 with 1 Peter 4:6
Revelation 5:13 (“under the earth”)

By the way, demons do not live in Hell, nor does Satan.

Monday, April 8, 2019

Mindless Repetition

This week we made our monthly visit to a church we previously attended all the time. While the teaching is good, as is the leadership (for the most part), the music is what drove us away. Often it is played too loud, and the songs are often vacuous, or mindless, or repetitive ad nauseam. However, usually the first Sunday of the month they have communion and the songs are usually old hymns or good new ones, with not a whole lot of band participation; but not this week.

The first thing that assaulted our ears was a few minutes prior to service they had a recording blaring way too loud, and it was an advertisement for some band coming on Saturday (I don’t think churches have any business paying for bands to come to entertain; I think it is a horrible waste of offerings.). It was totally inappropriate for a worship setting.  And the band participated in every song we sang, but at least it was more sedate than usual.

The first song we sang was the old hymn “At Calvary”; no complaints there! After this, with the chorus of:
Mercy there was great
And grace was free
Pardon there was multiplied to me
There my Burdened soul found liberty
At Calvary

…we discovered that the theme for our songs was “mercy.” 

The choir then sang His Mercy is More. While I can’t complain about the lyrics, this is another expense I don’t think churches can justify—buying the material for choirs is a travesty when there is excellent hymnology sitting in the pews and already paid for!!!

Then it began to go downhill—the congregation then sang a “radio song” which I’ve never previously heard: Mercy, by Matt Redman and Jonas Myrin:

I will kneel in the dust
At the foot of the cross,
Where mercy paid for me.
Where the wrath I deserve,
It is gone, it has passed.
Your blood has hidden me.

Mercy, mercy,
As endless as the sea.
I'll sing Your hallelujah
For all eternity.

We will lift up the cup
And the bread we will break,
Remembering Your love.
We were fallen from grace,
But You took on our shame
And nailed it to a cross.

Mercy, mercy,
As endless as the sea.
I'll sing Your hallelujah
For all eternity.

Mercy, mercy,
As endless as the sea.
I'll sing Your hallelujah
For all eternity.

May I never lose the wonder,
Oh, the wonder of Your mercy.
May I sing Your hallelujah.
Hallelujah, Amen.

May I never lose the wonder,
Oh, the wonder of Your mercy.
May I sing Your hallelujah.
Hallelujah, Amen.

May I never lose the wonder,
Oh, the wonder of Your mercy.
May I sing Your hallelujah.
Hallelujah, Amen.

May I never lose the wonder,
Oh, the wonder of Your mercy.
May I sing Your hallelujah.
Hallelujah, Amen.

May I never lose the wonder,
Oh, the wonder of Your mercy.
May I sing Your hallelujah.
Hallelujah, Amen.

I will kneel in the dust
At the foot of the cross,
Where mercy paid for me.

This repetition was just inane! This song was written for performing or listening to, and NOT for congregational singing!!! There was even an octave change which no one could have expected unless they had heard the song before! When will song leaders get that through their skulls and quit choosing songs because they drive emotions and make people feel good!?!?

After communion we sang Mercy to Me, by Randy Cagle.  I can’t get the lyric on the ‘net, but this song was acceptable lyrically.

After prayers, offering and scripture reading, we just had to have another “radio song,” Have Your Way, by Claire Cloninger and Don Moen.  This one is definitely from the charismatic world with praying to the Holy Spirit (notice you won’t find praying to the Holy Spirit in the Bible) and the mindless repetition (with emotion-driving music).

Have your way
Have your way
Holy Spirit, fill our hearts
And have your way

As we wait (we wait on you)
And as we pray (we pray to you)
Speak your word into our hearts
And have your way

Have your way
Have your way
Holy Spirit, fill our hearts
And have your way

As we wait (we wait on you)
And as we pray (we pray to you)
Speak your word into our hearts
And have your way

As we wait (we wait on you)
And as we pray (we pray to you)
Speak your word into our hearts
And have your way

Speak your word into our hearts
And have your way

Speak your word into our hearts
And have your way

Talk about vacuous! Nothing is taught in this song except charismatic nonsense of praying to the Holy Spirit.

Well, after the sermon we had relief from this silliness as we sang an old hymn, Trust and Obey.

We like to go back to this particular assembly because we like the pastor’s teachings and we miss seeing many friends we’ve met there. But when even communion Sunday gets this way, it makes it more and more difficult to want to return.