Tuesday, August 21, 2012

What Is Doctrine?

We often hear preachers and teachers talk about doctrine - that they teach it; that  it divides; that is harmful to building a "good, soul-winning church", and sundry other cliches.  But, just what is doctrine, exactly?  I don't mean what did your favorite guru tell you it was; I mean what saith the scripture concerning this matter of doctrine?  Let us look:

Deuteronomy 32:2 My doctrine shall drop as the rain, my speech shall distil as the dew, as the small rain upon the tender herb, and as the showers upon the grass:

Heeding the law of first mention, we see that doctrine is first and foremost God's speech; or words.

Job 11:1-4 Then answered Zophar the Naamathite, and said, Should not the multitude of words be answered? and should a man full of talk be justified? Should thy lies make men hold their peace? and when thou mockest, shall no man make thee ashamed? For thou hast said, My doctrine is pure, and I am clean in thine eyes. 

Again, we see in this passage that the doctrine is again equated with words and speech.  One more for witness' sake:

Proverbs 4:1-2 Hear, ye children, the instruction of a father, and attend to know understanding. For I give you good doctrine, forsake ye not my law.

Goes without saying here as well: doctrine is heard and it is law.  Laws are written in words.

In general we can say then that any person accurately teaching the words (that's individual words, not a general message) of holy scripture is teaching and or preaching doctrine.  However...

Isaiah 28:9 Whom shall he teach knowledge? and whom shall he make to understand doctrine? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts.

This verse says God will teach doctrine to those that are weaned from the milk.  Strange...  Now let's add these verses to the mix:

1 Peter 2:2 As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:
1 Corinthians 3:1-2 And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ. I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able.

There then must be a division in scripture between milk and meat.  And therefore, there are some things God will not reveal to the Christian who has not been weaned from the milk of the word.  So just what is the milk of the word?  What are these "easy" doctrines that God expects you to know before he will give you the "deep things?"

Hebrews 5:12-14 For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat. For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe. But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.

Using this passage in Hebrews we see that meat is prepared for those that have used and had made themselves ready by reason of use in the scripture.  Moving on in Hebrews we read:

Hebrews 6:1-3 Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God, Of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment. And this will we do, if God permit.

We see here that the Paul calls this list of topics principles and foundational; and they need to move on past these things.  Make no mistake, there is a doctrinal application to Hebrews (hence the name of the book) concerning these specific doctrines as applied to OT Judaism.  However, there is also a NT application for all of these doctrines in this dispensation.  Therefore we can make application and say the milk you need to be weaned from could be said to be: 1. Repentance  2. Faith  3. Baptisms (there is more than 1)  4. Laying on of hands or gifts  5. Resurrections (there is more than 1)  6. Judgment (there is more than 1).

Are you aware of the different baptisms, judgments, and resurrections (quick, grab your Scofield and read the notes!)?  How many deacons in independent baptist churches can biblically define "repentance?"

Knowing Paul fed the Corinthians milk, and so taking a cursory overview of those topics written therein we see: judgment seat of Christ, leaven in the body, not fornicating, lawsuits, marriage & divorce, idolatrous knowledge, providing for ministers, spiritual gifts, charity, the gospel of the grace of God, resurrections, and collections to name a few.  With a few additions, this list has lots of parallel from Hebrews.

We can safely conclude that if you are not settled in these basic, milky doctrines, God will not reveal the deep things or the meat to you.  You will be stuck in the land of the Corinthian's and the Galatian's: carnality (what Bible college did you go to?), heresy (only the local baptist church is the bride of Christ), man worship (Dr. So and So's campus is so big), the covering of sin (You're hurting the cause of Christ my publicizing this small misstep at an otherwise such a fine church), and legalism (we have standards, you know!).

The problem with the average independent baptist church, is most of their people will never learn most of these foundational doctrines and will never progress past these, and so, will forever be stuck in a church that is a mile wide and an inch deep.  Or as Dr. Sam Gipp put it in his book For His Pleasure, "babies birthing babies."

Don't you want your children to grow up?  Why don't you think God wants you to do the same?


Monday, August 20, 2012

A Dispensational Nugget

While most of professing Christianity is steeped in heresy due to their inability to rightly divide the word of truth (having a large impact on this is the fact that most of professing Christianity doesn't use the Authorized Version, therefore the command to rightly divide is omitted - 2 Tim. 2:15).  This is even true of professing dispensationalists.  And while 2 Tim 2:15 is the most common verse when teaching the authority of right division, there is another less popular and sometimes overlooked verse to consider.

2 Peter 1:12 Wherefore I will not be negligent to put you always in remembrance of these things, though ye know them, and be established in the present truth.

"Pope" (tongue-in-cheek) Peter mentions something called "present truth."  Well, if you can read (and if you were educated in America in the last 40 years, you may not be able to), and if there is such a thing called present truth, there at the very least must be something we can call "past truth."  And there is likely something that we will refer to as "future truth."  This trinity falls in line with the way God uses '3' throughout the scripture: Father, Word, Holy Ghost; Three Days & Three Nights; Jew, Gentile, Church; Past Earth, present Earth, new heavens and earth; etc.

The application of past, present and future truth is vitally important to proper understanding of the Bible.  Here are a few examples:

Do you believe in Eternal Security?

Romans 8:38-39 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Jude 1:21 Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life.

Do you need to keep yourself in God's love; or, is God's love inseparable?  What about this one:

Ephesians 4:30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.
Psalms 51:11 Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me.

Didn't David know he couldn't lose the Spirit?  Why would a man after God's own heart not know such a simple and fundamental doctrine as eternal security (or as my Calvinist friends may say 'Perseverance of the Saints')?


Matthew 19:16-17 And, behold, one came and said unto him, Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life? And he said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.
Acts 16:30-31 And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved? And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.

So, does eternal life come by keeping the commandments or by believing on the Lord?


1 Corinthians 15:1-4 Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel...how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:
Revelation 14:6-7 And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters.

Why doesn't that angel mention the cross of Christ?  Didn't Paul say even if an angel from heaven preach another gospel that he is accursed?

These are just a the tip of the iceberg of the potential list of "contradictions" in the scripture that have no legitimate answer unless you can rightly divide the word of truth (notice I didn't say "understand dispensations."  Simply understanding where the law ends and the Church begins will not answer these questions).  The sad part is there are plenty of professing dispensational baptists that can't answer these questions.  Oh; but you thought your preacher was teaching you doctrine, did you?


Monday, June 25, 2012

Bread, Coffee, & the Pope

Folgers coffee company manages to arrange a meeting with the Pope at the Vatican.
After receiving the Papal blessing, the Folgers official whispers 'Your Eminence, we have an offer for you. Folgers is prepared to donate $100 million to the church if you
change the Lord's Prayer from 'give us this day our daily bread' to 'give us this day our daily coffee.'

The Pope responds, 'That is impossible. The prayer is the word of the Lord. It must not be changed.'

'Well,' said the Folgers man, 'we anticipated your reluctance. For this reason we will increase our offer to $300 million.'

'My son, it is impossible. For the prayer is the word of the Lord and it must not be changed.'

The Folgers guy says, 'Your Holiness, we at Folgers respect your adherence to the faith, but we do have one final offer…. We will
donate $500 million - that's half a billion dollars - to the great Catholic Church if you would only change the Lord's Prayer from 'give us this day our daily bread' to 'give us this day our daily coffee.' Please consider it.'

And he leaves.

The next day the Pope convenes the College of Cardinals.
'There is some good news,' he announces, 'and some bad news. The good news is that the Church will come into $500 million.'

'And the bad news your Holiness?' asks a Cardinal.

'We're losing the Wonder Bread account.'


Thursday, June 14, 2012

Heartland Baptist "Bible" College

Next in our installment of Bible colleges is Heartland Baptist Bible College (formerly known as Pacific Coast Baptist Bible College) in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma where Sam Davison is in the president.

As we said before, we based the results on the 4-year prescribed plan for those thinking they are called to be pastors.

As with Crown, you can get a feel for the direction of the school by certain introductory statements that are made on their website such as thew following:

"We realize there are good, fundamental Bible colleges across America that emphasize Baptist distinctives, separation, soul-winning, and world missions."

  • Since no Christian in the Bible ever called themselves a baptist, emphasizing "Baptist" distinctives is called philosophy, not Bible.  The emphasis should be Bible doctrine.  I know everyone that loves the Baptist distinctives more than the Bible itself would say that all the distinctives are biblical, but we know better.

"These three majors are designed to promote the development of character, spiritual maturity, and commitment to the local New Testament Baptist church."
  •  You can develop your character, become more spiritually mature, and learn commitment to a temporal church organization without spending thousands at a Bible college: so why go? 
So for Heartland, here is your Bible education:

FRESHMAN: 3 Bible Courses - Gospels, Genesis, Acts/Life of Paul
SOPHOMORE: 4 Bible Courses - Bibliology, Pneumatology/Angelology, 2 Bible electives
JUNIOR: 5 Bible Courses - Ecclesiology, Christology/Soteriology, Eschatology, Anthropology/Hamartiology, 1 Bible elective
SENIOR: 5 Bible Courses - Major Prophets, Minor Prophets, Dispensationalism, 2 Bible electives

This yields a result of 17 Bible courses in a 4-year program of study.  However, in addition to the aforementioned Bible electives, the student will also have the opportunity to take up to 6 more Bible electives.  We did not include these in the count since they student can choose between taking a Bible course, course on youth work, a missions course, or Greek.  We also felt it was unlikely that a student would use all 6 opportunities to take a Bible course.  The total number of classes required is 56: which leads to a result of 30% using just the required classes.  If we are gracious and assume some Bible loving student would use all 6 electives to take a Bible course, that percentage jumps up to 41%.  

Either way you slice it, less than 2 full years of education time is spent educating future pastors to perform their primary duty: "FEED MY SHEEP."

While we do commend HBBC for having a course specifically on dispensationalism, they too spend too much time acting like a worldly university.  They waste time with subjects such as grammer, composition, American Lit., and Speech & Debate to name a few.  Again, not all of these classes is a complete waste of time; but as a substitution for teaching through Paul's epistles verse-by-verse?  We think not.

Nevertheless, this is what happens when Christianity takes on worldly institutions and tries to "christianize" it: it didn't work for the papists, it work for the Baptist's either. 


Thursday, June 7, 2012

The Crown College of the "Bible"

First up in this study on Bible college is the infamous Crown College of the Bible located in Powell, Tenn. and run by "Dr." Clarence Sexton.  Despite the serious Shibboleth problem that was exposed down there, this is still one of the leading independent baptist colleges in America; as well as one of the most influential.  Therefore we chose to deal with it out of the gate.

We based the results of the survey on the 4-year prescribed plan of study as listed on the college's website.  While we understand that this may not be the exact way every pastoral ministry major at Crown goes through the system, it is the recommendation of the school, and therefore, is the ideal.  Keep in mind we also defined a Bible course as:

  • An individual book of the Bible taught
  • Specific Bible doctrines such as: Soteriology, Angelology, etc.
  • Dispensational courses
  • A required "Bible" elective
  • Book groupings taught such as: Pastoral Epistles
You can start to get a feel that this college, like the others, is more interested in teaching their students THEIR PHILOSOPHY rather than the words of holy writ as they list the key courses of the pastoral major as Living the Christian Life, Homiletics, and Baptist History and Distinctives.   One would think they would at least include the Pastoral Epistles as a key class for future pastors, but no.

With this in mind, here is what future pastors and graduates of Crown must undertake to be deemed "prepared" for the ministry:

FRESHMAN: 0 Bible Courses
SOPHOMORE: 6 Bible Courses - Bible Doctrine I & II, Pentateuch, Gospel Records, Historical Books, Christian Church Epistles
JUNIOR: 3 Bible Courses - Pastoral Epistles, Poetic Books, Hebrew Christian Church Epistles
SENIOR: 4 Bible Courses - Major Prophets, Minor Prophets, 2 Bible Electives

This yields a result of 13 Bible Courses in a 4-year program of study.  The total number of courses required to obtain a Bachelor of Biblical Studies in Pastoral Ministry from Crown is 54.  Therefore, doing the math (13/54) we find that 24% of the classes taken by a pastoral major are actually Bible courses.  While this is pathetic, Crown actually fares better than other "Bible" colleges; if you can believe that.  They, at least, do cover the entirety of the canon of holy scripture; albeit in an elementary way.  But this is more than you will see at some IB/IFB colleges in this survey.

Is this what you expected?  If we combined all the Bible courses, they could be taken in one academic year.  That means a Crown pastoral major will spend 3 of 4 years learning everything except the Bible.  WOW!

So what other subjects are taken by pastoral majors?  Greek (how come no Hebrew and Aramaic?), missions, Christian Home, Christian Music, Church Finance, Baptist History, and Counseling to name a few.  And we would not condemn the taking of these courses as many of them are helpful, and maybe even needful.  However, it is never wise to substitute teaching of holy scripture for an auxiliary course.  Church finance, church history, the home, music, and most other side subjects are covered in scripture.  Therefore you could teach the Bible in-depth; verse-by-verse, book-by-book, and cover all of these in some detail; kind of like expository preaching, which most fundamentalists think is a death sentence for a church per Jack Hyles' commendation (but that's another subject for another day).

Well...one down and several more to go.  Remember, we said Crown was one of the better ones.  Up next: Pacific Coast...errr...Heartland Baptist Bible College.


Tuesday, June 5, 2012

"Bible" College?

Dr. Peter S. Ruckman once said, "Higher Christian education is a circus without a tent."  And the truth of this statement has never been more evident than here in Laodicea.  The proof of this can be seen in churches all across the land pastored by men from some of the most well-known Baptist Bible colleges.  Yet their congregations are ignorant of even the basic Bible doctrines.  Why is that?  Why can't these men transfer their vast knowledge of the scripture which their professors transferred to them in Bible college?  Better yet: how much knowledge of the scripture did those professors transfer to their students?  You might be surprised how little!

Despite former 10-year HAC professor Dr. William P. Grady commenting that while he was there they taught "below zero doctrine," we thought it prudent to see exactly how little Bible is actually taught at these institutions designed to prepare men to "feed the flock of God."  The percentage of Bible taught in a 4-year program designed for men (supposedly) called to be preachers will astound you.  What you will notice is the overwhelming number of "ministry" courses taught;  meaning, these carnal schools are putting out managers and not men that are "apt to teach" since the men that taught them aren't apt to teach either.

For the purposes of this research and survey we defined a "Bible" class as:

  • An individual book of the Bible taught
  • Specific Bible doctrines such as: Soteriology, Angelology, etc.
  • Dispensational courses
  • A required "Bible" elective
  • Book groupings taught such as: Pastoral Epistles
So how will your alma mater fare in this survey?  Not well, that's for sure.

First up...the Crown College of the Bible.  Stay tuned.


Thursday, March 22, 2012

I'm A Bible Believer - Part 2

2.  A Bible believer will change his belief to match the words of the Bible, while a fundamentalist will correct the Bible to match his belief.

The second reason is pretty self-explanatory and happens in various ways.  However, I will address just one of the bigger issues with this point: that is salvation.  While almost no fundamentalist has a question regarding how men are saved during this dispensation, there is huge controversy over how men were saved and are going to be saved in past & future ages respectively.  The typical fundamentalists teaches all men were always saved the same way.

The main reason for this is bible college systematic theology.  Systematic theology teaches you a point of view, then shows you how to fit it into the scripture.  But if we let the scripture speak for itself, which it is more than capable of doing, we come up with a different answers than the systems of men.  So let's ask a few simple questions to illustrate.  Remember: men have always been saved the same way; by grace through faith, looking forward to the cross, blah blah blah.

  • Were the apostles saved before Christ's passion (less Judas, of course)?
Most fundamentalists will answer yes to this question: and yes meaning saved and saved the same way by believing the same gospel (there is more than 1 gospel, which they also don't get) I believed (1 Cor. 15:3-4).  Let's test this with the words of holy writ:

Luke 18:31-33 Then he took unto him the twelve, and said unto them, Behold, we go up to Jerusalem, and all things that are written by the prophets concerning the Son of man shall be accomplished. For he shall be delivered unto the Gentiles, and shall be mocked, and spitefully entreated, and spitted on: And they shall scourge him, and put him to death: and the third day he shall rise again

Isn't that the gospel?  That's about as plain as you can get.  But what was their response to this?  Was it "Amen" and "Hallelujah" all around?  Hardly.

Luke 18:34 And they understood none of these things: and this saying was hid from them, neither knew they the things which were spoken.

Isn't that strange: they didn't understand.  How could they not understand.  Wasn't every person from Adam & Eve (post-fall) waiting on this exact event for their salvation?  But not only did they not understand, they COULD NOT understand as it was hid from them.  Additionally, in Mark 9:32 after Jesus tells them the gospel in verse 31, it says they were afraid to ask him what he was talking about!

Again, they believed the death, burial and resurrection for salvation, did they?  What about Mark 16:14 when Jesus, "upbraided them for their unbelief"?  So make up your mind Mr. Fundamentalist: were they saved the same way or were they not saved until after the resurrection?  According to Luke, they didn't understand until "opened he [Jesus] their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures."  That's post-resurrection.

Even in Matthew 16 when Peter makes his infamous confession, he doesn't say he believes that Jesus will die, be buried, and rise again.  In fact, Peter rebukes Jesus for saying he's going to Jerusalem to be killed.  Peter's confession is that Jesus is, "the Christ, the Son of the living God."  Not the same is it?

But surely after the rapture until eternity people will be saved by Paul's gospel, right?  Not if you've read the Bible and believe it.  Matthew 25:34-40 tells of the "sheep" that enter into the Millennial Kingdom at the 2nd Advent.  Notice: the reason these "sheep" get in is found in verses 35-36.  Do you see anything in their about faith or the death, burial, and resurrection?  I don't either.  They get in because they did something for his brethren (v.40): i.e. WORKS!  Notice also verse 37: the Lord calls these people righteous.  You thought righteousness only came by believing the gospel and having it imputed; isn't that what Paul says in Romans?  You better learn to rightly divide!

And what about the Millennial Kingdom: are people going to be saved?  Surely in 1000 years at least 1 person will be saved.  So will they be saved by responding favorably to the preaching of the cross: after all, Paul does say "faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God?  Sorry to burst your bubble again.  Nobody will be responding to the preaching of the cross or any other preaching for that matter.

Jeremiah 31:33-34 But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people. And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the LORD: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the LORD: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.

What?  No teaching in the Millennium?  In fact, if you are caught teaching or preaching the penalty is capital punishment according to Zechariah 13:3.  It doesn't take a genius to understand that FAITH and SIGHT are mutually exclusive (Heb. 11:1).  If faith comes by preaching, and there is no preaching, people will not be saved by faith.  They must be saved by WORKS.  You can find how people will be saved in the Millennium in Matthew chapters 5-7 aka the constitution of the Kingdom.

Are you willing to change your belief to match the words of scripture?  If not, you might be a fundamentalist.


Wednesday, March 21, 2012

I'm A Bible-Believer - Part 1

We have posted here before about one of the specific differences between Bible Believers and Fundamentalists here.  However, when explaining this topic to a friend of mine about why I do not label myself as a fundamentalist (besides the obvious answers such as it was started by baby sprinkling protestants and not Bible Believing Baptists) I thought it meet to generalize these things in print for the over zealous brethren that think fundamentalism was started by John the Baptist and to not identify yourself as such is borderline heresy.

While I understand that not all those who identify themselves as fundamentalists fit this mold, those that have been part of both "camps" will agree that the generalizations are true.  There are 5 basic reasons as to why I am a Bible Believer and not a fundamentalist.

  1. Bible believer's glorify the words of God (Ps. 138:2; 2 Thess. 3:1) while fundamentalists magnify their historical positions (Mat. 15:2,9; Col. 2:8).
While most modern day IFBers will scream about being KJVO Bible believers (even though their heritage is otherwise), they really are not.  They are Bible users.  They use the Bible in a method called "take a verse, take a fit."  That is to say, they have a preconceived idea about a thing, then they go to the Bible to "prove" the Biblical basis for what they want to preach by pulling a verse out of context and then wresting it (2 Pet. 3:16) to fit their alma maters philosophy.

This is done largely because of the shallow knowledge of the Bible most Bible college graduates have.  The fact of the matter is, most pastoral majors at IFB colleges will take less than 40% of their classes learning Bible doctrine.  Instead they are inundated with "philosophy of ministry," "practical theology" (is there some "unpractical" theology?), "baptist distinctives," and administrative courses.  So what they learn are the proof texts to back up the philosophy (Col. 2:8) and historical positions they learned at their college.  They will run to Malachi to prove tithing, Mat.19 to prove divorce and remarriage is adultery, and they will say most of the time the word "church" is used it's talking about a Local Church so there's no such thing as a spiritual body.  Want to see this in action?  Here are 2 recent examples:

  • An evangelist, in an effort to prove that having an altar call is a biblical mandate, used Gen 3:9 as his proof text.  If this isn't stupidity I don't know what is.  Does he not known when the first mention of the word 'altar' is?  Does he not know that Adam and Eve are the only two people alive and they haven't sacrificed (that is the purpose of an altar) anything to anybody?  Does he not know NOTHING has even been killed yet (this is what happens at an altar)?  Don't get me wrong: I'm not dogmatically against having an altar call.  But let's be serious: there are exactly ZERO verses of scripture where any Christian or lost person is told to go to an altar and pray about anything, let alone any mandate to do so.  Have an altar call if you want; but let's not pretend following the pattern of the Wesley revivals makes it Biblical or makes one a heretick if they choose not to have one.
  • Yesterday on Twitter: in an effort to prove that you should never tell a wicked sinner that they are...well...a wicked sinner, but only tell them that God loves them (which isn't true until you get in Christ - Jn. 3:36), a HAC alum pastor used Eph. 4:29.  Now, if context were not important this would just be fine.  But since context is important, it isn't fine.  If you read the verse carefully (which he obviously did not, or cannot), you will see a contrast.  The contrast is instead of speaking corrupt things, speak things that edify & minister grace.  The two key words in that verse are edify and minister.  The word edify (in all of it tenses) appears only in the NT 16 times.  EVERY time it appears, it is in reference to believer's...NOT LOST PEOPLE WHOSE DOOR YOU KNOCKED ON!  Lost people cannot be edified since they cannot understand the things necessary for edification (1 Cor. 2:14) and they are not part of the Body.  If you look at the word minister you will find that the only people in scripture that get ministered to are God and his saints: NO LOST PEOPLE.  So Paul is clearly talking about speaking to believers, not lost people in door-2-door soul winning.  Let me emphasize, nobody is advocating being unnecessarily rude to anybody just because they are lost, but truth is truth.  And there is a tactful way to be honest and let them know there current condition and state.  
However the problem with this man is he went to a Bible college that was more concerned with building the church through soul winning than teaching the Bible (see Jack Hyles' Science of Calling a Pastor rule #3): he learned a philosophy of ministry and now he has to force his philosophy onto any verse that he can make fit what he was taught.  Of course this same fool tweeted: "There is zero Biblical evidence of a witness insulting the very ones they are trying to lead to salvation."  You can't be serious, right?  Has he read any of Peter's sermons in Acts?  He called those Jews wicked and murderers.  Was it true?  Yes.  Was it insulting? I would be insulted if you called me a murderer.  Did anyone get saved after Peter called them wicked and murderers?  You bet your bottom dollar!  (oh, wait...Baptists don't bet) But of course his argument centers around what you define as an insult.  Is it an insult to tell someone they are going to burn in a lake of fire forever if their name is not written in the Lamb's Book of Life, even if you say it with a soft tone and a smile?  But I digress: because he went to a Bible college that doesn't know anything about the Bible he is an example of proof to a statement made by Dr. William P. Grady in his most recent book Given By Inspiration on page 47: "'Pseudo King James Onlyites' are some of the shallowest Bible students in the Body of Christ.  They are always lacking in two areas - right division [which is why the evangelist runs to Genesis to prove doctrine for the church] and cross-referencing."  If this imbecile had simply downloaded E-Sword for free and run the references on those two words, he could have avoided this folly and not ended up in the same error as the Papists, Mormons and JW's: creating a private interpretation (2 Pet. 1:20).  Of course, he could have just read the entire chapter of Ephesians 4 and it would have been obvious too.  But who reads the Bible these days?

Most of the historical positions held by fundamental baptists are not really that historical.  Don't believe me?  Hop on Twitter and see who gets quoted: John Rice, Curtis Hutson, Jack Hyles, Tom Malone.  Occasionally you'll get some from "way back" in the past like Spurgeon, Sunday, Moody, or Wesley.  And these are the "old paths?"  Christianity is 2000 years old and the blessed old paths only go back a few hundred years at most?  Not so old or historic if you ask me.

I'm not a huge fan of David Cloud, but the thing I like about him is his honesty in expressing his positions (even when wrong).  But he had a recent quote that I love that fits in nicely with "historic fundamentalism" and it's modern day cronies:

"Some men seem to think that if John Rice or J. Frank Norris or Bob Jones did or believed something, that I must be some sort of nut for not following them. I don’t understand that mindset. I don’t unquestioningly follow fundamentalist leaders past or present in any matter. I appreciate all of the good things they stood for, but they were only men." 
At the end of the day, fundamentalists have to answer what they really believe: what the Book ACTUALLY says or what their alma mater told them it said.  Lot's of these self-professing fundamentalists don't have enough backbone to go against their protestant movements precepts.  They want to be accepted at the next big leadership conference or pastors school.  I think John 12:43 has something to say about that.


Monday, March 5, 2012

Sound Doctrine - Right Division

2 Timothy 4:3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;

For the past two Saturdays in a row I have had a pair of nice, well-meaning JW's show up at my house.  And on both occasions one of them was a former Baptist.  In particular, the most recent Saturday this former-Baptist used to be a member of the church I currently attend (albeit it was under a different pastor).  This church at that time was KJVO and considered itself independent and fundamental.  So what happened?  Why did this person leave?  What made this person leave a KJVO IFBBB, to become a person that believes they are one of the 144,000 Jewish male virgins preaching in the tribulation?

The direct answer to this problem is a lack of knowledge concerning right division.  If this married, white (non-Jewish) male, with three kids would have been taught how to rightly divide the Bible; he would never have fallen for a lie that he could become 1 of 144,000 Jewish male virgins preaching during the tribulation.  But in order to learn right division at a church, you need to go to a church where the elders think it is important to learn, yea even essential.

However, most mainstream Baptist churches do not teach right division.  In fact most mainstream Baptist churches teach the heresy that all people were always saved the same way in every age.  In turn, they pretend that other hereticks that preach some other gospel other than 1 Cor 15:1-4 is teaching something that's not even in the Bible.  Their bible college systematic theology class teaches them how to view the scripture based upon their systems presupposition: men were always saved by faith alone and have eternal security.  Therefore when a JW, SDA, Pentecostal, Campbellite, or even a Lutheran or Papist baby sprinkler shows up and shows them Rev. 14:1,12; Acts 2:4,38; Mat. 24:13; Lk. 1:5-6; or Ezek. 3:20-21 they don't know what to do because their pastor has said those things aren't "really" in the Bible and they don't mean what they say.  Saved by grace through faith always, were they?  Eternal security, eh?

We haven't begun to deal w/ Mat. 25 where people get into the Millennial Kingdom, NOT BY FAITH IN CHRIST, but by helping the Jews during the tribulation.  Saved by looking forward to the cross were they?  Well according to Luke's gospel Christ told the disciples of his passion at least twice and BOTH times not only does it say they didn't understand what he was saying, but that it was hid from them so that they perceived it not.  Even one time it says they were scared to ask him about it.  They were looking forward to it, but didn't understand it until the closing verses of Luke's gospel when he opened their understanding.  Faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the word of God does it?  If it takes faith to be saved in every age, then nobody will be saved during the Millennial Kingdom since preaching is outlawed (Zech. 13:3).

These topics are some of the meat and strong meat of the word that is never touched in most churches.  Why?  It doesn't promote soulwinning.  It doesn't build the church.  It won't help increase attendance 20% year over year so you can brag about what a "man of God" you are at the next preachers fellowship.  This type of attitude is why a so-called evangelist recently tweeted that [paraphrase]: [you] don't need to study the antichrist, you just need to get right with God.  Certainly, if you're not in good fellowship w/ God you should get there.  However, it is unbiblical to say a Christian doesn't need to study the antichrist considering 2 Tim. 3:16 says that all scripture is profitable.  Well, if all scripture is profitable, and the antichrist is in scripture, then there must be some profit for the Christian to study the topic.

Nevertheless, when Christian's don't learn the answers to these questions (and there are answers) from their KJV, and someone from a cult shows up and shows them these "contradictions" and can answer them (albeit falsely), then they're gone: and knocking on my door two weeks in a row with a New World Translation in their hand.  Even worse they get duped into thinking the KJV has errors because they haven't been taught how to understand why in one place in Acts it says they did hear the voice and in the other they didn't and they become an apostate bible corrector like James White.


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