Archives for

Current affairs

Inter-church musical event in Penticton

Yesterday (Aug 1) I received a call from a Mr. D. S*****, representing a local Pentecostal Church, and inviting me to an inter-church musical event in a local park. He informed me that he had 21 or 22 local churches already signed up to participate in this event. My response was to refuse because I knew that to have so many churches from Penticton involved required many compromised organisations to be involved. A few sentences later in the conversation it became clear that top of the list of those involved were local Roman Catholic churches as well as the Anglican church.

I was asked if I wanted to state a reason for refusal to participate in such an event. I attempted to explain that it was wrong to engage in an act of worship or evangelistic activity while including those who denied the gospel. As the conversation proceeded it became clear that Mr. S***** had little idea of the issues involved in this matter. The conversation ended with him recommending me to the mercy of God and he hung up. It is because his tragic, hackneyed responses and the points he made to justify his inter-church event are commonly used today that I felt prompted to write this post. 

Jesus’ example. It is common to hear it stated that since the Lord Jesus went about dealing with sinners, it is proper to include those who do not accept the gospel in evangelistic efforts like this inter-church event. It is very clear that the Saviour did NOT include among His disciples those who openly and deliberately opposed His doctrine! He preached the truth to sinners but did NOT allow such to join with Him to lead others in worship, or to present His message with Him as an equal particpant. The distinction was always maintained between Himself/His true followers and all who rejected His word. If Mr. S*****’s logic were Scriptural would we not find joint services between Christ and the Pharisees, for example?? This did not happen! Rather the Saviour denounced those who opposed His teaching in the strongest terms.

The reality is that the Jesus cited by ecumenists is in fact a false Christ (2Cor 11:4) – one of their own imagination whom they can use to justify blatant disobedience of Scripture and avoid separating from sin and error.

No perfect Church or pastor. I was pointedly told that I must be without sin to denounce sin in others! This is a pet objection used by ecumenists. IF this was true then it would never have been possible for a prophet/preacher since the dawn of time to say anything!! Every Christian must certainly do their utmost to practice what they preach or else their witness has no credibility, but a lack of perfection is not to silence God’s people as they witness against sin. Rather, they deal with it first in their own lives and witness by word and practice to others. It is to be noted that this consideration of a lack of perfection never seems to stop the likes of Mr. S***** telling me that I am wrong! Perhaps he has found what has eluded me.

No judging!!! How wearying it is to hear the words of Matthew 7:1 used in this context – Judge not, that ye be not judged. The Saviour is not forbidding judgement but insisting that we will be judged by the same standard we judge others by. Clearly, in the context of this passage the Saviour requires us to make a judgement between what is righteous and what is wicked. As I told Mr. S*****, when I proclaim the condemnation of God on sin, I have the authority of God behind the words. My private judgement on any matter is no better or worse than any other private individual, but when any Christian states for example: “adultery is wrong and all who engage in it are sinning against God” they are in agreement with the teaching of Scripture, and they have authority to do so. This in not because of any personal merit but because of the authority of God’s book and His Law. Sadly, the reality is that it is because Mr. S***** and multitudes like him do NOT exercise judgement according to Scripture that they involve themselves with that which God has forbidden.

There is a sobering commentary on this matter of ‘not judging’ found in the words of Paul: “And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;” (Romans 1:28 AV) The word reprobate is literally ‘void of judgement’. A lack of Biblical discernment/judgement is in fact the mark of the unregenerate! How strange that modern ‘christians’ have made what is an evidence of a sinner into an evidence of what they call a ‘christian’!!

 

A sinner might be saved.This statement was used to me to justify the event. ‘It will all be worthwhile if God uses it to save just one sinner’. This is very wrong! To justify activity that Scripture condemns on the grounds that a sinner may be converted is perverse disobedience. Salvation is of the Lord and it is true that He has saved sinners in extraordinary circumstances. However, Mr. S*****’s logic justifies the murder of the Lord Jesus by Jewish and Roman authorities, since He saved the dying thief as He was on the cross. Since Peter very clearly speaks of the wicked hands that crucified Christ, the fact that a sinner was saved does not justify doing what was wrong. The logic employed here is perilously close to that which Paul denounces: “And not [rather], (as we be slanderously reported, and as some affirm that we say,) Let us do evil, that good may come? whose damnation is just.” (Romans 3:8 AV) To reason that potential good justfies behaviour that disobeys the commands of Scripture is – to use Paul’s terms – an evil, a slander upon the truth, and in fact is ‘damnable’ thinking. These are strong terms, but they indicate the mind of God in response to the reasoning employed by Mr. S*****!

In this context it is appropriate to ask, What will that potential convert be converted to? Mr. S***** cited the hymn Amazing grace and John 3:16, impressing me that it was entirely possible that a sinner could partake of the saving grace of God whether that hymn was sung by a Roman Catholic or not. He seemed oblivious the fact that the ‘Amazing grace’ a representative of the Church of Rome might sing gustily about is NOT the saving grace of God. Roman Catholicism defines grace as the favour of God as it is mediated and dispensed by the Church of Rome. In Rome’s eyes, the ‘grace’ of baptismal regeneration; the ‘grace’ of consuming Christ in the blasphemy of the Mass; or the ‘grace’ of having sin forgiven through confession to a priest and performing penance; is all amazing! A sinner may be converted to Rome’s view of Amazing grace and be more firmly on the road to Hell than ever before. Sadly, in such an event, Mr. S***** would be congratulating himself on the success of his inter-church venture.

It is not the message of a hymn that saves but the gospel of Jesus Christ as it is revealed in Scripture. It is wrong to promote a false gospel in the hope that it might be used to convert a sinner.

The Bible is clear.

“If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds.” (2Jo 1:10-11 AV) 

“If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness; He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings, Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself.” (1Ti 6:3-5 AV)

The word of God is very clear on how God’s people are to withdraw/separate from everything that is a compromise of the gospel of Christ. The apostate Church of Rome and its Protestant counterpart in the Church of England, are touchstones of unbiblical error. Any event which involves them may be dismissed by the Bible believer as involving a disobedient association. These churches – and many like them – are not churches of Christ but as the Scripture puts it, synagogues of Satan. The doctrine taught in these churches is foreign to the Bible and while it may be a form of religion is decidedly not the doctrine and practice of the Bible.

By incorporating the false teachings of the Church of Rome and the modern Anglican church, as well as other unbiblical errors, into this inter-church event Mr. S***** and others like him are found by God to be partakers in their evil deeds and doctrine. As such, he brings the censure of God upon his own head.

 

The euro crisis continues

The financial crisis that has gripped Europe for many months now seems to be coming to a climax. Billionaire investor, George Soros, has indicated that he believes that there is just a window of three months to save the euro and the whole monetary union project. This is putting massive pressure on Germany as the de facto banker of Europe. To date the Germans have resisted the pressure to bear the costs of absorbing the national debts of European countries into a single pan-European debt and uniting the individual economies in an even more dramatic way. The pressure for Germany to shoulder this burden may well yet be the means of forcing her out of the euro and out of European monetary and economic union. Certainly such an event would be in line with what the Scriptures reveal about the territory which forms the confederacy over which Antichrist rules.

The emergence of that ten kingdom phase of the Roman Empire, predicted by Daniel the prophet and John the Apostle, looms increasingly large on the political horizon in Europe. The following is from a Daily Telegraph columnist commenting on the crisis:

As everyone has been saying, in order to be viable in the face of market pressures, a genuine currency (as opposed to a pretend one) must have a “lender of last resort” – a true central bank like the US Federal Reserve System. But this is impossible within the EU because the constitutions of member states are not compatible with each other or with the principle of underwriting debt across national boundaries (as the states of the US are under their genuinely federal system). So, either the existing democratic institutions and historical principles of all EU countries must be forcibly reconciled in a Year Zero political reconstruction, or there can never be a monetary union (let alone fiscal union) that will be sustainable. This is where we are.

Interesting!

Financial chaos looming in Europe

On July 19th, 2011 a columnist in The Daily Telegraph wrote the following:

We are heading towards fiscal union or break-up,” said David Bloom, currency chief at HSBC. “Talk is no longer enough as the fire threatens to leap over the firebreak into Spain and Italy.

Revolution spreads to Syria

Syria is now on the map of countries in the region with an uprising

– Louai al-Hussein Analyst and writer

 

A BBC news story on the spread of the wave of democratic revolution sweeping across north Africa and the Middle east which has now reached Syria.

The nation of Syria will play a prominent role in the events that climax in the Saviour’s return. As a neighbouring antagonist of Israel, it is almost inevitable that it will be part of the end-time attempts to destroy God’s ancient people and extinguish their claim to the land God gave the Patriarchs.

Relics of the crucifixion

It is hardly surprising to find that as the Easter season approaches stories like the following emerge!

  • Jesus crucifixion nails ‘found’. Two of the nails used to crucify Jesus have been discovered in a 2,000-year-old tomb, according to a new film… Read the report here.
  • ‘Thorn from Jesus’s crucifixion crown’ goes on display at British Museum. Read the story here.

Spiritual darkness

Such stories are usually a lot of popish nonsense, harking back to the dark ages when the, at times gruesome, relics of saints and heroes of the Roman Catholic Church were paraded for the benefit of the faithful. This is just an evidence of the increasing superstition and mystical ignorance of the religious world today. That there are many who actually get excited about such claims is just evidence of the apostasy of this age. It is the same darkness and ignorance that prompts professing Christians to wear a cross or crucifix in the misguided fallacy that the presence of a symbol is a spiritual talisman that brings them closer to Christ.

Egypt – what the future holds!

Political events that have been developing in Egypt over the last few weeks have drawn the attention of the world upon that nation. It is always interesting – and important for the Christian – to examine such things in the light of God’s word. Bible history of course has a lot to say of Egypt and the role that nation played in the history of Israel in Old Testament times.

But the Bible has more to say about Egypt than just to record historical events. It very clearly points to a role played by Egypt in the events that will revolve around the Antichrist and continue even until the time of the end, Daniel 11:40. While, at this point, the immediate future for Egypt may involve great uncertainty, the word of God reveals to us the infallible purposes of the Sovereign God of Heaven whose counsel regarding that nation will be carried through. God declares “the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure.” (Isaiah 46:10)

When God’s word is offensive

A recent online edition of Christianity Today contained an article on a controversy over how to translate the biblical phrase the Son of God in Bibles used in Islamic nations. The problem is that the Koran actually pronounces a curse on the use of such a title and many Christian missionaries have found the use of this title a positive hindrance to their evangelism. Some have adopted a compromised position of shifting away from the language of Scripture in order to avoid a hostile reaction.

Rock the river

“What I mean by evangelistic: we’d go for an hour and a half of head-bangin’ music; I’d get up, preach, and give an invitation.”

Franklin Graham interviewed by Canadian Christianity, April 8th, 2010.

Rock the river is a ‘ministry’ of the Billy Graham Organisation aimed at young people. In the Fall of 2010 Rock the River is coming to venues in western Canada—Fraser Valley, Calgary, Edmonton. As the name suggests it is an event that revolves around a rock music theme. The ‘Christian’ rock bands that are scheduled to be involved in the Western Canada events include: Flyleaf, Skillet, Starfield, Thousand foot krutch, The almost, Downhere and Tedashii. The events will also feature preaching by Franklin Graham.

Manhattan Declaration response

The Free Presbyterian Church has through its history opposed ecumenism and apostacy and has vociferously stood for the historic Scriptural position of being separated unto the gospel of God, Romans 1:1. It is the God-given duty of every faithful gospel minister and of the Church of Christ to sound a note of alarm against every instance of departure from God and His word. I am happy to join our voice with those who take that stand against all that the Manhattan Declaration represents.

On November 20th, 2009 a number of individuals released a joint statement called the Manhattan Declaration: A Call of Christian conscience. What made this statement particularly noteworthy and positively alarming from a Biblical perspective, is that it is a document that had brought together as signatories, various individuals prominent in the evangelical, Anglican, Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox communities.