Get Back To The Bible


Pretty much ending my series for now on revival and getting back to a Biblical Christianity, lets… get back to a Biblical Christianity.
It’s not hard.There’s nothing controversial about it.

We as Christians simply need to repent. If it’s a doctrine that can’t be found in a Bible, it needs to be tossed. Centering prayer, contemplative prayer, Joel Osteen visualizing, reincarnation, karma, universalism, evangelicalism, cooperating with the unsaved, accepting all religions as teaching the same truths, mantra chanting, reiki healing, chakras, auras, healing touch, blab it and grab it, salvation by baptism, salvation by predestination, these are all UNBIBLICAL and PAGAN.

We need to separate from these teachings. If you have books that advocate them, throw them away, donate them, or burn them (unless you are collecting them for apologetics purposes for research – it’s a little known fact David Cloud has a huge library of false Christian teachings which he uses to look up sources).

All that old, boring stuff that the older generations call Christianity – yup, that was Christianity, and we need to get back to it.

When I got saved, I turned to looking for, “what part of Christianity is known for sticking to the Bible?” I found it was the Baptists. So I searched for a Bible believing Baptist church. I’ve told that story before, but here’s my point – we need to toss anything out of the churches that is not Biblical.
Bottom line – let’s get back to God.

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Ecumenism


cumenism is out of control.

ec•u•men•i•cal \ˌe-kyə-ˈme-ni-kəl, -kyü-\ adjective

[Late Latin oecumenicus, from Late Greek oikoumenikos, from Greek oikoumenē the inhabited world, from feminine of oikoumenos, present passive participle of oikein to inhabit, from oikos house—more at VICINITY] circa 1587

1: worldwide or general in extent, influence, or application

2 a: of, relating to, or representing the whole of a body of churches

b: promoting or tending toward worldwide Christian unity or cooperation—ec•u•men•i•cal•ly \-k(ə-)lē\ adverb

ec•u•men•i•cal•ism \-ˈme-ni-kə-ˌli-zəm\ noun

1888: ECUMENISM

Inc Merriam-Webster, Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary. (Springfield, MA: Merriam-Webster, Inc., 2003).

Why do I consider this a problem? Aren’t we supposed to be united as Christians, Christian brotherhood, you know, the Church?

Um… believe it or not, this doctrine – as we interpret it today – cannot be found in the Bible.

Before everyone starts opening their slower than molasses in January E-Sword program, let me explain.

There is indeed supposed to be unity within the church.

Define Church, first.

A visible, local assembly of born again believers.

Are the unsaved part of that?

No.

The definition of “Christianity” today is no longer “all the born again believers”, but “Everyone who calls themselves Christians, except for Jehovah’s Witnesses.”

20 years ago, the average Christian knew and understood that Roman Catholicism was a false religion, a cult – but today mention that, and it’s like you declared yourself to be a… wow, I have just run out of things to compare that to! Fifteen years ago, I’d have said “communist” there, but now Americans see nothing wrong with Communism.

Today, Christians link arms with Mormons, who are just GIDDY over the acceptance. They were a cult 15 years ago, they’re a cult today.

People who love God but have never been born again? “Christians.” And today’s Christians are offended at the thought of passing someone a tract who calls themselves Christian and love God, but have never been born again.

“We should major on the majors, and not on the minors!”

Sounds great! What are you talking about? Dcotrines? Sure! Show me in the Bible which doctrines are major, and which are minor. You must consider salvation a minor doctrine we should ignore, because you’re accepting people whose definition of “saved” is sprinkled with water as a baby, or immersed as an adult being REQUIRED for salvation. Church of Christ followers are in a cult, with damnable heresies. Lutherans who are not born again are not entering heaven. Baptists who have not been born again are not going into heaven. Methodists who have not been born again are not going to heaven.

None of these people can be called “Christian.”

“But I go to a Baptist church!” Yes, and ask your pastor! He’ll be the FIRST to tell you that if you are not born again, you are NOT going to heaven.

When I was a teenager, I heard ALL about being Born Again, and I knew what it meant. We have no excuse. And even more frightening, the Bible hints you can share in their punishment for even bidding someone Godspeed that you’re kicking out of your house for being a heretic! How much more will you face the music for embracing the unSaved as Christians?

It’s going to be a very uncomfortable time to say the least for a lot of today’s Christians at the Judgment seat of Christ.

4 Ingredients of Effective Prayer


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Photo by Patrick Fore on Unsplash

Prayer.

It’s one of the key components to an effective life as a Christian.
Yet most Christians either only pray when they want something, or many who call themselves Christians simply babble in nonsense sounds and assume that constitutes prayer.

One of my jokes during a sermon was that the only way to get some Baptists to pray was put food in front of them. We laugh because its funny, and we laugh because it’s true.

Prayer is not “Earthly license for heavenly interference”, as one televangelist put it.

Prayer is an act of worship.

Let’s let that sink in for a minute.

Prayer is an act of worship. Bible study and devotional reading also are acts of worship.

But prayer is worship in a different way.

To have a relationship with God, you need to pray. If you don’t pray, you don’t have much of a relationship with God.

So let’s look at how to begin to change this.

Tim Laheye liked to diagram prayer sessions as “ACTSAdoration, confession, thanksgiving, supplication.” I personally like CATS better!

I think that confession should come at the beginning – if you’ve got unconfessed sin and unrepentant sin, God does not hear your prayers until you take care of that. I think that should be actually taken care of first.

The adoration section of prayer should be fairly lengthy. About 30% of your prayer time really should go into this part. If you’ve set aside 5 minutes of prayer, that would mean almost 2 minutes should be on this.

How do we work on this? Read the Psalms. A good portion of Psalms is the psalms of glory, where David magnifies the Lord for the length of the Psalm. “The mountains skipped like Rams”, “You who set the seasons in order” “You who set the boundaries of the seas…” “Who ordained the stars…”

We can learn a lot from this. Consider praying at first those Psalms. Then use some of that formula as a blueprint. Think about the Glory of God. The Majesty of God. The Forgiveness of God. The Mercy of God. God as our father. God as the righteous judge.

These are ways to start for now.

Thanksgiving – try thanking god for salvation! Try thanking God you are alive! Try thanking God that He is merciful!

If you really dwell on God’s attributes, there’s a lot of things to thank God for. Remember when a group of men came to Jesus Christ and asked to be healed, and the Lord healed them, only ONE came and thanked Him. And Jesus Christ said something about it!
Hint number one: That’s God’s way of saying he wants more than just Credit – He wants thanks as well.

The last ingredient – supplication… that part I don’t need to tell you about! WE all beg God for a million things. “Lord, can I have an Atari 2600?” What we don’t know is sometimes God answers us with, “In five years, you’re going to just throw it away because you’re bored with it.” Everyone knows how to ask for things, so I don’t have to explain how this part works!

Conclusion

Prayer should be a regular part of the Christian life. Learn how to adore God and thank God, and not just ask for things!

Reasoned Atonement


What do I mean by Reasoned atonement?
Simply, that you can actually reason your way through the problem logically without resorting to tracts or a witness from everyone.
Quite literally, this is why the Bible says that…

“Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things. But we are sure that the judgment of God is according to truth against them which commit such things. And thinkest thou this, O man, that judgest them which do such things, and doest the same, that thou shalt escape the judgment of God? Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance? ” Romans 2:1-4(KJV)

So, quite simply, what this means is, one can deduce the existence of God and the need for atonement… solely by what you see and experience around you. This is the cosmological argument.

Here we go:

We can see the universe around us is vast, that things are far too orderly to be left to chance. Universal laws such as speed of sound, electrons having a negative charge, etc., prove there is too much order to the universe. If things happened by chance – and I proved that many of the theories advanced to prove that long ago were busted – then there would not be universal rules and constants.

We also can see by observing nature that sometimes we cannot trust our senses. This means we are poor judges of what we see and experience. Optical illusions are readily available. There is too many mirage events which sometimes are the result of humidity and sunlight – such as “mysterious lights around Mexico”. Those aren’t flying saucers, they are theorized to be reflections in an atmosphere of gases vapors, etc. Auto headlights can sometimes be seen reflected great distances. One infamous mirage of a steamship sailing over a desert was reported. The steamship was real – it was just hundreds of miles away from the desert on the ocean.

We have universal senses of right and wrong. Although it angers people for me to say it, we all know that taking something that does not belong to you is wrong. We all know that murder is wrong. If you’re going to try to tell me that you have no inner sense of right and wrong, I’m going to advise you see a professional for possible diagnosis as a sociopath.Indeed, the existence of Sociopaths proves to us that if something in them is not functioning correctly, there is an innate sense of right and wrong.
Before you rush to harass me…Sorry. I don’t allow comments.

Anyway, proceeding on (it’s too late – you’re going to be judged by God, so might as well read this!) if there is a sense of right and wrong, this means that someone put that there. There’s no “Evolution” – no proof for it and tons against it. And that sense logically would not be a product of evolution. It’s the product of that which is perfect Good programming us.
So, if so, then we have a problem, since man is incapable of being good. The Atheist campaign a couple of years ago “be good for goodness sake” resulted in zero permanently changed lives! We cannot be good. Give us a law, we’ll break it. Give us a rule, we’ll try to get around it.

So, what then? If we break the laws programmed into us by this supreme Good being, then what is that? Your hands now are polluted. “Well, I’ll work my own salvation by doing nothing but good deeds.”
Won’t work. Your hands are now polluted. You have no way to atone for your sins.

So it requires a man without sins to atone for your sins, since you can’t.
So, how can we find a man without sin? He would have to be God!
Very well. Name me one person, just one, who claimed to come to die for everyone, because He was without sin, and God.
I can think of only one name.

Jesus Christ.

There you go. Reasoned atonement. Want me to prove everything? Easy.
Go to any bookstore and buy a King James Bible.

Hey, meet any of the readers of my blog and ask them for one, and I’ll just bet they FESTER to give you one.

I’e got entire article series’ on these subjects. Historical proofs for the Bible. Inerrancy of the Bible. Proofs of Jesus Christ. Answering evolution. Answering the cults.

So here’s my final point. You can have atonement by accepting through faith the atonement of Jesus Christ. What do you have to do? Repent, and believe.

That’s it!

So, what if you DON’T accept the Jesus of the Bible, but instead a Jesus of the cults, the brother of (l’havdil) satan, the good man Jesus, then eastern mystic Jesus, the aquarian conspiracy Jesus, the archangel Michael Jesus. None of these are the Jesus of the Bible.

Then you have no atonement.

So if those who have atonement go to heaven, where do the rest of humanity go?

Where are you going?

Think on these things.

7 Ways to Backslide


Most Christians want to stay true to the Lord, and avoid backsliding into sin. The rest really aren’t Christians, so they’re not worried about it.
But did you know Evangelicalism has you programmed to backslide? A lot of people struggle with daily disappointments and besetting sins, and try to find a way to avoid sliding back. Let’s look at what Evangelicalism is doing to keep you in sin, and ineffective for the Lord right now.

  1. Devotionals, instead of the Bible. Single biggest thing, right there. Our Daily Bread starts with ONE Bible verse, a pithy story that usually isn’t well connected to the Bible verse at all, a call to inaction, and a sample prayer to pray. Throw the things away, and never read them again. This hits you on so many levels I could write an entire blog post on this alone! Not to mention that someone else is interpreting the Bible verse for you, and you have no idea who they are, their theological standing, etc.
  2. Refusal to separate from error. No kidding. This is another big one. I’ve heard Evangelicals praise the writings of modernists who denied the deity of Christ and the virgin birth, and are suffering right now in eternal torment. I’ve read so many times the “In Essentials, unity, in all else, tolerance” nonsense too many times. If you study and devour the writings of non-Christians, it will not help you to maintain a holy, sin free lifestyle. If you’re spending a lot of time reading C. S. Lewis, how will that help you to live a Godly life? He thought salvation was by works, and believed in Universalism. C. S. Lewis had problems with the idea of Hell (I wonder if he still does? If he;s in heaven, then no. If he’s in Hell, then… no). People who teach error – and I could spend a full time job exposing them – lead you into error. That’s a bottom line statement. My purchase of Logos came with so many modernistic materials I had to issue warnings about soe of them on this blog.
  3. Lack of prayer. Prayer is not just asking God for whatever you want… prayer is about praising God, speaking to God, giving glory to God,and asking for intercession, healing, etc. Tim Laheye used the ACTS acronym – adoration, confession, thanks, supplication. Try that, If you spend one minute a day on each, you’ve only prayed four minutes, but it’s four minutes more than you’ve been praying!
  4. Lack of Fasting. There are times that Christians need to fast. That’s obvious from the Bible. When you’re seeking God’s will for your life, BINGO – fast time. All Americans could use a fast. Biblically, a fast includes no water as well as no food. You have to start slow, and build your way up. By the way, unless God is strengthening you, it is impossible to fast 40 days with no water. Day number 4, someone is calling an ambulance to take away your cold, cold remains. For most people, I would not recommend a fast with no liquids.
  5. Lack of church. If you’re not attending a Bible believing Narrow is the Way Fundamentalist King James only fried chicken eatin’ Baptist Church, you’re backsliding already. It takes like-minded believers to keep you strong.
  6. Television. Yup, I know them’s fightin’ words. And you only watch Godly programming, but there’s TV commercials. And I’ve seen Godly TV programs throw something in there that never should be shown on a Christian’s TV. I remember dialogue on “Seventh Heaven” that really should never have been said EVER on a Christian TV show (that should bring you to some conclusions…). Better to not have a TV.
  7. Foul Language. Taking the Lord’s Name in vain and cursing are two of the quickest ways to backslide. Evil communication corrupts good manners!
How do you fix this?

Do the opposite of these seven errors! Throw away your daily Bread. Separate from error and false teachers! Pray daily, the more the better! Fast when the Lord leads you to, be faithful in church attendance. Abstain from Television, and be exceedingly careful what videos you watch, and finally avoid taking the Lord’s name in vain and cursing! This includes watching movies where people DO curse!

Walking The Tightrope


Being a fundamentalist today is like walking a tightrope. You’ve got to make it past Lordship Salvation without getting wrapped up in it.. You’ve got to make sure you’re a dispensationalist. You’ve got to avoid Ruckmanism/Pearlism/Hyles-ism/ Riplinger-ism. You’ve got to avoid THeological liberalism.

Every teaching tool you turn to, you’ve got to be careful. Many commentaries, dictionaries, encyclopedias, harmonies, teaching tools of all kinds, are written by theological liberals.

Logos is the most serious Bible study tool I’ve ever owned. But I’ve got to wade through interviews of people who’ve uncovered “Startling new discoveries on salvation” on the homepage – and what it boils down to is, it’s a heretic with a new book Logos is triyng to sell. Logos runs it by their resident scholars, who are theological liberals, and they see nothing wrong with it, because they don’t believe ether.

Accordance is written by a woman who’s devised a great study tool, but it’s clear from her blog entries on the Accordance web site that she too is caught up in THeological Liberalism.

Bound up in ALL of this is CS Lewis, JRR Tolkien, and Roman Catholicism, because all Christian denominations should be one and united, despite serious doctrinal error and the basic facts that most people who claim to be Christian are not saved.

We need to be TOGETHER, and UNITED! It would be RUDE to tell someone who believes in Salvation by works that they’re hellbound! Why, it might make them feel bad!

“What about the eternity in hellfire part?”

“That’s not my responsibility.”

It IS your responsibility. If you partner with some theological liberal and don’t bother to tell him he’s hellbound, what will you say to him at the Great White Throne judgment when he says, “Why didn’t you say something?” Yes, you’re going into heaven. But he’s going to Hell. I have ABSOLUTELY NO DOUBT that the resident scholar at Logos is not going to be with me in Heaven, but will be screaming in torments forever, in the lake of fire. So much so, that when his materials are free giveaways by Logos, when his classes are avialable, I avoid them like the plague. The same goes for NT Wright, and this new guy that looks so grim when he talks about his new discoveries about salvation being works oriented. The same goes for David Stern, the mis-translator and author of the Jewish New Testament translation. And CS Lewis. Etc.

I can understand why many IFB just lock themselves away with their King James and plug their ears. I’ve been tempted to do that myself. But I’m learning HUGE amounts about the Bible.

THe single hardest thing for me is, staying away from other translations, to stay away from other denominations. Wow, it would be GREAT to stop fighting, to stop swimming against the current. But we’re in the middle of the great falling away, the great apostasy. To give in is to join up, to help establish the wordwide faith that will help the Antichrist move into power. And I don’t want my eternity in heaven to be tainted with the knowledge that because I gave up, because I stopped fighting, I helped establish the Antichrist.

WAAAY too many people are going to have their eternity tempered with that realization. Way too many.

Don’t you be one of them.

How to find a Biblical Church


How to find a Biblical church.

In today’s world, finding a Biblical church sooner or later is going to become a necessity. The church you’re in right now probably has plans to turn into something that’s not a church, if they haven’t already.

The first thing you should ALWAYS do is ask to see the statement of faith. If they don’t have one on the website, be worried. A statement of faith nowadays has to be incredibly long, not a short little three paragraph thing.

  • What’s their stand on the Bible? Any Bible? The Message? Do they believe the Bible was inerrant and Inspired ONLY in the original manuscripts, or do they believe the one in your hands is inerrant and inspired?
  • What’s their stand on Salvation? I ask this becase literally, the most popular and famous Christian writer today – N. T. Wright – is preaching heresy, and so many Christians are dazzled by his writings that they’re not stopping to say “wait a minute…” Does this church believe salvation is a free gift of God and not of works, in accord with Eph. 2:8-9? Don’t assume they believe a Biblical message of salvation. If their altar call doesn’t mention Repentance… worry about it.
  • Do they baptize by immersion? If they teach baptism is not for today, avoid that church. I mentioned Jason Cooley a couple of times on this blog until I realized that was his stance, and now I reccommend people avoid him. If they offer you a choice, or baptize infants, leave that church.
  • Does it feel like a house of God, or a rock concert? I strongly feel that churches should play doctrinally strong hymns and not rock music for the service. While there are strong arguments for and against Christian contemprary music, there’s one thing you cannot deny – once a church makes a move for including modern music in its service, the doctrinal positions soon change. That’s not even a 70% type of statistic from what I’ve seen, that’s a 100% statistic. That alnoe should make you nervous. find me one church with a drummer, a bass player, and guitar solos that preaches the wrath of God against sinners and a literal eternity in burning fire and torment for anyone who is not born again. You can’t play half the service of universalist man-centered music and then preach a God centered message – it won’t last that way for long.
  • Do they preach a literal eternity in a fiery Hell for any who are not saved?
  • Do they accept EVERYONE who names the name of Christ as saved, despite evidence to the contrary?
  • Are the Deacons saved? Big question.
  • Are the walls painted black in the sanctuary? Really. I’m not kidding. There are several churches in my town whose walls are painted black, so that the light show works better.
  • Do they preach the whole word of God?
  • Do they make their doctrines based upon emotions, feelings, and what’s pleasing to the flesh – or do they base their doctrinal stand upon the Bible? THat’s a strong question nowadays. Believe it or not, David Cloud’s latest book makes the charge that Southern Baptists respond institutionally more by emotions than the word of God – and I can’t refute that.
  • Do they join hands with those who take unBiblical doctrines, or do they advocate Biblical separation from those in error?
  • Do they preach a Biblical pre-tribulation rapture, or do they assume somehow that there won’t be a rapture, or that “The Church” must go through part of or all of the Rapture? This is a big issue. Like the contemporary music issue, it’s the tip of the iceberg that something is wrong.

Okay, now let’s examine the other side of the issue.

  • Does the congregation look like they’re afraid to raise their eyes to look at the pastor?
  • If you try talking to someone before the service, do they cast a fearful eye at the pastor first before answering you?
  • Do the congregation member’s eyes pass by you as if you don’t exist? I learned in seminary that “As the congregation is, so is the Pastor first.” If the congregation ignores you, so wil the pastor.
  • Do they kick the homeless and needy out of the church – or does the Deacon pull them aside and give them money so they can get some real food? Big issue for me. I saw the Deacon in my old church pull a homeless man who was begging during the service out of the sancutary – and then empty his wallet into the man’s hands. That deacon remains my hero, dsepite my leaving that church. By the way, that Deacon was a military retiree, on a fixed income.
  • Is there a constant theme of, “you’re not getting this kind of Biblical truth anywhere else!”
  • Does the church have pictures of Jack Hyles or Peter Ruckman prominantly displayed?

As we get farther and farther into the age of apostasy, it’s getting harder and harder to look for a Biblical church. So many churches are starting to remove denominational names from their church name (Baptist is not a denomination, but you know what I mean). And some are even removing the word “Church” from the name.

If they’re taking the word Church from the name… it’s a hint.