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Archive for September, 2009

Here’s a novel idea…..
Don’t go to church on Sunday.  Be the church.
 
The gospel is being turned on its head.  No longer is the church the pillar and support of truth….it’s becoming re-packaged as a community support club that does good works.  Can I have a hug?
 
Somehow the verses that state that faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word, are no longer valid with today’s warm-fuzzy theology.
 
So, some churches in the Southwest Ohio Nazarene District are participating in a Faith in Action event.  Which in reality, subverts the purpose of a church and casts a negative light on why BELIEVERS are supposed to assemble together. 
Since solid Bible teaching and exposition were tossed out years ago in favor of a  watered-down, inoffensive, seeker-friendly gospel, I guess it’s not much of a surprise.
 
Let’s examine this admonition again in 2 Timothy 4:2:
Preach the word!  Be ready in season and out of season.  Convince, rebuke,
exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching.
  
Perhaps we can help Paul contextualize the gospel for today?
Weed and mulch!  Have rake ready in season and out of season.
Rake, weed, mulch, with all longsuffering and campaign
exposure (Don’t Go to Church tee shirts and press coverage).

  

Be sure to read the FAQ Sheet prepared by Mark Atherton of the SWO District.  He states that in #8 Be sure to get press coverage!  It’s all about marketing the church, isn’t it?  Who needs the work of the Holy Spirit when you have newspaper coverage, and TV coverage?  No conviction of sins needed here…..all you need for your community is the transformational power of Weed B Gone!

 

Here is a sample campaign announcement by one of the participating churches, Beavercreek Church of the Nazarene.

 

There is nothing wrong with helping those in need.  In Acts, the focus was on helping those within the church who were in need.  They didn’t forsake the assembling together to go out into their communities to spruce up Ephesus so that they would be looked upon by the pagans in a more acceptable light.  Their greatest tool was the Gospel, and they paid dearly for being faithful to the Gospel.  Their commission was (and our commission today is) to go out and preach and teach the Gospel and allow the Holy Spirit to bring people unto a state of repentance for their sins.  THIS is the Kingdom of God, changed hearts, circumsized hearts, through the work of the Holy Spirit who convicts.   Nothing  transforms or impacts a community or a nation better than a complete and thorough understanding of the Gospel. 

 

Is it any wonder why some nations ban Bibles and execute or imprison those who would share its contents?  While the leadership of the Southwest Ohio District directs their churches to engage in a gospel of “good works”, others, who are faithful to the true Gospel and have a clear understanding of the Great Commission, are paying with their lives.   The SWO District has bought into a flawed (emergent) view of what radical Christianity is and what it means to build God’s Kingdom.

       

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Crosstalk America radio program has done a very informative interview with Chris Rosebrough talking about the Emergent Church.  Click HERE to listen.

 

I suggest that you order CD copies to hand out to people.  Sometimes handing out CD’s to people who can listen in their car and don’t have time to read and do research, can be very effective in bringing people up to speed on what is at the heart of emergent ideologies. 

 

You may download this program onto your Ipod, and/or order CD’s directily from Crosstalk for a very small fee.  To order  by phone call: 1-800-729-9829  M-F   8am-5pm Central

This program aired on:  September 17, 2009

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I  recently came upon a blog piece  from a former Nazarene pastor who left the Nazarene Church to assume the pastorate of a Unitarian Universalist Church. 

 

In his blog piece he states several reasons why he is leaving the Nazarene Church for a more liberal, Unitarian Universalist Church.   Of particular interest, take note of Reason #3:

3) I have come to see the Bible as many human-authored works, with its beautiful and horrible parts, rather than a divinely inspired mandate for life (which parts would I choose as patterns for my life? I certainly could not choose them all.). One cannot say both that God is love and that God once required the stoning of homosexuals and children who wouldn’t obey their parents. Our morals have evolved over time, and with them our concepts of who/what God is. This does not require outside intervention.

 

Now, be sure to read some of the comments, particularly, the comment from another Nazarene pastor, James Diggs.  Here is part of his response.

Point 3) I agree with you 100% about scripture! The scriptures are the work of human beings; and even if it is inspired by God it does not mean that it is “inerrant”. The Bible is NOT “the word of God”, Jesus Christ is the word of God, and he as he put it he came to make the written code “complete”. This implies that the written scripture is INCOMPLETE; it has limitations and is fallible.

 

This is what happens when the education institutions are given over to liberal professors.  The training up turns into a train wreck.  Students come out questioning their faith and questioning any trust in the Bible.   This is not to say that all theology professors are liberal.  It only takes a few to begin to dismantle the faith of some students, which later on, impacts the entire denomination. 

 

Just as Paul warned in Acts 20: 29-31

 For I know this, that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock.   Also from among yourselves men will rise up, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after themselves.   Therefore watch, and remember that for three years I did not cease to warn everyone night and day with tears.

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Linda Harvey with Mission America speaks about the connection between liberal politics and the liberal emergent movement and how many of the emergent gurus play into the hands of liberal faith-based politics and aggressive liberal social activism.

 

Many of the speakers listed in this YouTube piece have been given a platform to speak at Nazarene universities and therefore, enjoy a level of endorsement by the Nazarene universities that pay for these speakers to push the liberal agenda onto the students. 

For example: according to Point Loma Nazarene University’s 2009 Fall Chapel Schedule, Shane Claiborne will be speaking at Point Loma Nazarene University on November 9th.

 

The political side of emergent ideology is definitely having an impact on the Nazarene denomination.  I frequently come across emergent nazarene blogs that subtly paint capitialism as evil, or the source of our culture’s problem.  Look for terms that put down “consumerism and materialism”.  This is a subtle put down of capitalism and equating it with greed, and therefore, it is presented as a plague on society.  Social Justice ministers and classes on social justice play right into the liberal left agenda.

 

SIN and an unrepentant heart is what plagues each unsaved individual, family, and society….but speaking about those two things is not the emphasis of the emergent movement.  The emphasis is on community and a global outlook of man redeeming the planet and making it a better place. 

 

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