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Category Archives: Accountability

Some Honest Questions for Joseph Prince

Dr Michael Brown is one of the most theologically astute polemicist in the charismatic community. He speaks with clarity and charity when thexposing the “hyper-grace” heresy. In doing so, he fulfills Jesus inspired imperative in the letter of Jude.

 “…contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints. For certain ungodly men… have crept into the church, perverting the grace of god by sanctioning unrestrained-unrepentant behavior which flagrantly denies the credibility of one’s confession in the Lordship of Jesus Christ”   [rghanner paraphrase]

Dr Brown is at his anointed best in his recent open letter which poses eleven penetrating questions to Joseph Prince, one of the chief proponents of the “hyper-grace “heresy. I’ve extracted a sampling so as to evoke further reading of the entire article.

>If God has pronounced your future sins forgiven in the same way He has pronounced your past sins forgiven, why do Paul and other New Testament writers address these very sins in their letters, and why does Jesus address them in Revelation 2-3? We know that God doesn’t bring our past sins up to us, since He has forgiven and “forgotten” them. Why then does He bring our present sins up to us in the New Testament, even warning us about the dangers of walking in those sins, if they have also been forgiven and forgotten in advance?

>A leading hyper-grace teacher claims that the doctrine of progressive sanctification is a “spiritually murderous lie.” Does that mean that grace preachers like Charles Spurgeon, who believed in progressive sanctification, taught this alleged lie? And if “progressive sanctification” simply means to walk out our holiness with the help of the Spirit, what is so dangerous about this teaching? Put another way, do you reject the concept that the one who made us holy now calls us to live holy lives in thought, word and deed, thereby “completing our sanctification in the fear of God” (2 Cor 7:1)? Doesn’t Paul say we are called saints (that is who we are) and called to be saints (that is how we live)? (See 1 Cor. 1:2.)

>Since you believe we are not to judge our salvation by our conduct, how can we avoid self-deception? I know that you are against certain types of self-examination lest you become “sin conscious” and take your eyes off the finished work of the cross, but what do you make of verses that state that we know we have passed from death to life only if we live a certain way (like 1 John 3:14)? If I understand you correctly, you would question the salvation of someone who demonstrated no change of life and continued to walk in unrepentant sin. But doesn’t this mean that, on some level, you are looking at your “performance” to verify your salvation?Do you see any possible danger in emphasizing that it is impossible for a believer to lose his or her salvation? Of course, we could debate whether the Bible teaches this at all, but simply as a matter of experience, many of us have encountered very lost people—drunkards, fornicators, without the slightest interest in God (see 1 Cor. 6:9-10)—who have then assured us that they were saved because it was impossible for them to lose their salvation. So on a practical level, do you feel it’s important to add any scriptural caveats to your teaching of eternal security and, if so, how can you do this without putting an emphasis on “performance”?

 

 

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Megachurch Pastor Perry Noble Rebuked For Perverting Scripture

I am absolutely “joy-filled” at the character,courage and integrity of the SBC leadership for  holding Perry Noble publicly accountable for Screen-Shot-2014-12-31-at-11.31.29-PM perverting the 10 commandments into promises in order to make them more palatable to unbelievers in his church.

The seriousness of the SBC rebuke came with the threat of excommunication from the convention should Noble refuse to correct his heretical teachings. Bam!

rgh

Perry Noble, pastor of a South Carolina megachurch, was rebuked by a Southern Baptist leader in South Carolina for calling the 10 Commandments “10 promises” and for other “problematic positions and statements.”

The rebuke came last week from the president of the South Carolina Baptist Convention, Tommy Kelly, who said, “We as South Carolina Baptists must publicly state and remove ourselves from these positions and problematic statements and call for NewSpring to correct these positions if it chooses to say that it affiliates with South Carolina Baptist churches.”

..Hoping to bring more people to Jesus, Noble asked those at the worship service to view the 10 Commandments not as rules they have to keep in order to be Jesus followers but as promises that they can receive when they accept Christ.

He interpreted the first commandment (You shall have no other gods before me) as “Promise #1: You do not have to live in constant disappointment anymore.” The second commandment (You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything) was translated into this promise: “You can be free from rituals and religion and trust in a relationship.”

The “you shall not murder” command, he said, is actually a promise that “you do not have to live in a constant state of anger because you will be motivated by love and not hate.”

 
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Posted by on January 24, 2015 in Accountability, Conflict, doctrine, GOOOFY, heresy, hermeneutics

 

Pastor Goes Ballistic On Church Members

Watch as this First Baptist Pastor comes”unglued” moving from pulpit to pew to angrily and arrogantly wake up a “sleeper.”
This leads to an even more serious attack as he spots an uncommitted member. “And where have you been, Mr. Underwood?”…I noticed on the calendar, I’m supposed to marry y’all. What makes you think I’d marry you? You’re one of the sorriest church members I have!”

Priceless!
Can’t make this stuff up.
rgh

http://www.christianpost.com/news/baptist-preacher-blasts-congregants-during-sermon-for-sleeping-hissy-fit-goes-viral-98872/

 

How Did We Get Here?

imagesThis week Ministry Today  posted an article that cited some very disturbing statistics regarding the alarming condition of today’s ministers in the church. How did we get here?

  • 38 percent of ministers have admitted to having a one-time or ongoing affair since they began their ministry.
  • Even more have admitted to looking at pornography via their computers at home and or at their church office.
  • 77 percent of ministers surveyed admitted that they do not have a good marriage.
  • 1,500 pastors leave the ministry each month due to moral failure, spiritual burnout, or contention in their churches, never returning to the ministry.

http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/component/content/article/249-columns/cutting-edge/19878-heal-your-servant-pastors-deserve-grace-too

 
 

Mark Driscoll Compares Twilight Saga To Porn

A serious reading of Paul’s letter to the Corinthians will show that the Corinthian believers pushed back against the Apostle when he informed them  that attending temple restaurants of their day to eat idol food was in fact an act of fellowship with demons.

Why would the Corinthians reject Paul’s imperative to stop attending these idolatrous feasts? Because it meant refraining from a popular and culturally sanctioned activity.

It seems some Christians parents today may have the same Corinthian attitude when serious ministers warn of  attending the seductively popular but demonically  dangerous Twilight series.

Mark Driscoll is one of the more prominent voices and  the following extracts are from a CharismaNews write-up regarding a recent Driscoll blog post.

rgh

“Millions of fans lined up to see the final installment, Breaking Dawn Part 2, which brought in $141.3 million dollars in its debut weekend, scoring the eighth biggest opening weekend of all time.

In a blog entry titled “A Father’s Fright of Twilight,” Driscoll writes, “Twilight is for teenage girls what porn is to teenage boys: sick, twisted, evil, dangerous, But these moviegoers did not just consist of teenage girls.

As Driscoll said, “Tragically, many will be driven by their parents, including some cougar moms encouraging and joining their daughters’ obsession with handsome young males.”

“He explained that he is particularly concerned for Christian parents “who are naively allowing this filth into their children’s lives, buying these books and driving kids to see these movies.”

“He ended the article stating, “To such parents, ‘It is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God’ (Phil. 1:9–11).”

http://www.charismanews.com/culture/34646-mark-driscoll-compares-twilight-saga-to-porn

 

Civil Lawsuit Filed Against Sovereign Grace Ministries

Sovereign Grace Ministries (SGM), still addressing  the aftermath of an internal investigation of founder and president C. J. Mahaney’s leadership, now faces a class action lawsuit accusing the church and leaders of covering up child sexual abuse.

Christianity Today reports that three female plaintiffs “allege a conspiracy spanning more than two decades to conceal sexual abuse committed by church members” throughout the 1980s and 1990s, according to the Associated Press.

The lawsuit “singles out the church’s ‘Home Group’ structure, in which children are provided with day care so that their parents can attend services, as fostering a poorly supervised environment that enabled the abuse to occur,” reported the AP.

Here is an extract of the statement posted by Sovereign Grace Ministries:

“Though not yet served, Sovereign Grace Ministries (SGM) leadership has obtained a copy of the civil lawsuit filed last week against SGM and several pastors of its associational churches. This recent complaint makes broad allegations that SGM pastors were negligent in providing spiritual counsel and pastoral care in situations involving persons who had previously suffered child sexual abuse. It is important to note that it does not allege any act of child abuse by a pastor or staff member of SGM or of an associated church. SGM is not in a position to comment on the specific allegations at this time, but we are beginning a careful legal review of each allegation. Upon initial review it appears the complaint contains a number of untrue or misleading allegations, as well as considerable mischaracterizations of intent.

Child sexual abuse is reprehensible in any circumstance, and a violation of fundamental human dignity. We grieve deeply for any child who has been a victim of abuse. We want to minister the love, grace and healing of God to any who have suffered this horrific act…”

http://www.sovereigngraceministries.org/blogs/sgm/post/Updated-Statement-on-Reported-Lawsuit.aspx

http://blog.christianitytoday.com/ctliveblog/archives/2012/10/cj-mahaney-sovereign-grace-ministries-sued-for-concealing-child-sex-abuse.html

http://www.christianpost.com/news/sovereign-grace-ministries-accused-of-covering-up-child-sexual-assaults

 
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Posted by on November 1, 2012 in Accountability, charismatic, lawsuit

 

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Navigating A Moral Crisis

Tullian Tchividjian is the Senior Pastor of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. He recently discovered that a high-ranking staff member in the church was guilty of engaging in marital infidelity.

I personally appreciate the explanation of how he navigated the troubled waters of such a moral crisis on a Sunday morning with his congregation.

Especially insightful is his approach to actionable discipline and restoration. He referred to  it as being a “two-word church” rather than merely a “one-word church”. This brief  excerpt illustrates  the difference.What a balanced, mature, and wise distinction.

His illustration with the prodigal is simply priceless!

rgh

“I preached from Galatians 5:13, and among the things I emphasized and explained to our church was that we are not a one-word community (law or gospel) but a two word community (law then gospel). A law-only community responds to a situation like this by calling for the guy’s head (sadly, many churches are guilty of this). These churches lick their chops at the opportunity to excommunicate. A gospel-only community responds by saying, “We’re no better than he is, so why does he have to lose his job? After all, don’t we believe in grace and forgiveness?” A one word community simply doesn’t possess the biblical wisdom or theological resources to know how to deal with sinners in an honest, loving, and appropriate way.

Explaining that we are a law-gospel community, I showed how pastorally this means we believe God uses his law to crush hard hearts and his gospel to cure broken hearts. The law is God’s first word; the gospel is God’s final word. And when we rush past God’s first word to get to God’s final word and the law has not yet had a chance to do its deep wrecking work, the gospel is not given a chance to do its deep restorative work. Sinners never experience the freedom that comes from crying “Abba” (gospel) until they first cry “Uncle” (law).”

I illustrated this point by reminding our church that the father of the prodigal son did not fall to his knees and wrap his arms around his sons legs as the son was leaving, but as he was returning. He had been waiting, looking to the horizon in hope. When he saw his son coming home, crushed and humbled, he ran to him. But he didn’t stop him from leaving. He didn’t rescue his son from the pigsty. If we really love people and want to see them truly set free, we have to get out of God’s way and let the law do its crushing work so that the gospel can do its curing work.”

http://www.christianitytoday.com/le/2012/september-online-only/navigating-moral-crisis.html#.UFHpE07soRI.email

 
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Posted by on September 14, 2012 in Accountability, Church Discipline, gospel, infidelity, justice