Since When do Heretics Care What the Bible Says?

Have you noticed that heretics only seem to care what God says in His word when they are,

  1. Eisegeting the text to support their pet heresies, or false teacher.
  2. Telling you not to judge them/their heresies/their teacher.
  3. Telling you that you can never truly know the truth, so their teacher’s teachings are true.  You just haven’t matured enough yet to get them.
  4. Telling you that you are the one causing division, and not seeking peace, and unity.
  5. When they are playing the martyr for everyone to see.
  6. When they are playing the Pharisee card on you.

They arm themselves with the typical list of verses like arrows in a quiver to shoot your way when you expose them.  We’ve all seen the verse torn out of context with a brand new meaning attached to it that it never had in context.  Purgatory for instance, when you call it out there will be someone who cites 1 Corinthians 3:12-15.  When they are telling you not to judge them they pull out the old trusty Matthew 7:1-2.  Get ready for a mind blower.  You can’t know the truth because, Isaiah 55:6!  Here is the big unity one folks, 1 Corinthians 1:9.  I love it when they apply this one to themselves, Matthew 10:20.  You can basically take any verse that speaks negatively about Pharisees, and apply them willy nilly to your theological foes.  They are basically get out of jail free cards for many different losing positions because the person on the receiving end is a legalistic meany!

One thing you’ll notice if you look into their eisegetical abuses is that the scriptures they cite often times refute the point they are trying to make when you honestly read them in context.  Don’t expect to get them to change their minds when you demonstrate that.  Many of these folks are so concretely convinced that it will take a miracle from God to open their eyes, and ears.  If you run in to that situation, the quicker you realize it the better.  Then you can pray for them, and stop arguing.  Please don’t say, “I’ll pray for you.” in that snarky tone of voice.  Just pray for them without telling them.

They don’t want to hear what God says in His word if any of what you are quoting takes away from what they are teaching.  They use the Bible to attempt to shut up attacks against their heresies, or golden calf of a teacher.  Being a Reformed Baptist, I get called a heretic, and have many of these things said about me.  I don’t accuse someone of heresy lightly.  Heresy is more than heterodoxy.  Heresy is when you are teaching something that negates one of the primary articles of faith.  Heresy is heterodox, but not all heterodoxy is heresy.  A false teaching that doesn’t address one of the primary articles of faith is heterodox.  If a person teaches that Jesus was not God incarnate, they are teaching a heresy.  If a person teaches that Jesus was solely a man, they are teaching heresy.  If a person teaches that you should go to Church on Saturday, they are teaching a false teaching, but it isn’t heresy.

We have all been in groups on social media where we have encountered horrendous abuses to God’s word.  Due to my Bible reviews, I’ve been in many groups that were supposed to be solely about the material features of a particular Bible.  I don’t know how many times some actual heretic has come in, dropped a heretical statement on the sly, and then when people like myself mention that they are teaching heresy, and need to stop, they play it off as if they were actually asking something else.  Due to the rules of the group, I, or people like me get scolded by the admins.  Well, I am shrinking my presence in those groups.  My echo chamber is getting smaller.  One day it might be so small that there is no echo, it will only be the sound of one man’s voice.  I hope it won’t be mine, but that of Christ, from His word.   Remember, Salvation is of the Lord.  Repent of your sins, and trust solely in Christ for your justification.  Persevere in the Faith, and we’ll be with Christ in eternity.  Sola on my brothers, and sisters!

A Snyder’s Soapbox review of, “Random God Sightings” by Kelly Hanes.

Random God Sightings (Paperback) - Walmart.com

I was approached by Emily Jones from Columbus Press via social media for the purpose of writing a review for a new book they were publishing. The book is, “God Sightings” by Kelly Hanes. The original message I was sent included a blurb about the book. After I read it, I was concerned that it might not be theologically sound. I sent Emily Jones this message, “…If you still want me to read and review your book, you should know ahead of time that theology is very important to me. If the book has heresies, or blasphemies in it, I will mention them in the review…” To which she responded, “… I understand your theological commitment. I will get you a copy right away. We would love to have you do a review…” That being written, I agreed to do a review.

The book promptly arrived, and I began reading it. I immediately ran into problems with the emerging theological positions. I wanted to give the author, “Kelly Hanes” the benefit of the doubt, so I kept on reading. Unfortunately as I progressed in the book, I determined that it was blasphemous, and heretical. Vague, emotionally manipulative language was used throughout. I believe that the vague language is used as a defense measure, so that if anyone is critical of the work the author could come back later and insist that the critic didn’t understand what she was writing, and that they are misrepresenting her. It is incumbent upon the author to use specific and precise language when explaining nuanced topics like theology. I would expect precision from someone who has won literary awards like she has.

The book, “God Sightings” is a collection of 26 vignettes about the author’s alleged encounters with God. It seems from what I could deduct that the author believes; that everyone at certain times is actually God, in some sort of panentheism. That people preexisted in Heaven. That emotions are the arbiter of truth and since God’s word wasn’t even mentioned, I’m guessing that it is completely under the authority of emotional experiences. That it is acceptable to lie to people and her Husband. There is a mixing of heterodox teachings, emotional manipulation, a reliance on emotional experiences, in some syncretic, new age/emergent movement mysticism.  These alleged extrabiblical personal revelations from god are not to be trusted because they conflict with His word, and what He has already revealed of Himself in it, as well as through the incarnation, and the creation.

If I give Hanes the benefit of the doubt, I could conclude that when she writes about seeing God in these individuals, that she really means, she sees God using them as the means by which He accomplishes His sovereign will, while not indwelling the unbelievers, but unfortunately after reading her book, I can’t give her the benefit of the doubt. It is fairly obvious that she truly believes that all people are God. Not in the sense of the Holy Spirit indwelling them, while economically remaining a distinct individual person of the triune God, but rather as God Himself in the panentheist understanding.

In other words, she writes that these people are God. She even reveals her thoughts that she had during her conversations with these people, and in those thoughts says things like, “The silence finally broke, and the children returned to their conversations. I looked at the brown-eyed girl and smiled, and she smiled back at me. It was then, in that moment, that I saw God, right there, in the girl’s eyes. Shining, confident, exultant. Oh, God! I said in my mind. Is that You? (notice how she capitalized You to indicate that it is God.) I should have known! I felt my heart lift, my spirit soar. As we sat there looking at each other, God and I, one of Her classmates, leaned over and confided to us, voice lowered, “You know what? Sometimes I think I see specialness too.””

In one vignette she writes about a man who she thought perhaps was a malfeasant regarding her children while at the store. The children had received stuffed animals from this strange man, and it aroused her suspicions. She followed him and had a conversation with him. This is part of what she said that relates to her panentheism, “My heart began to pound. When he looked at me like that, wrinkles crinkling, dark brown eyes shining as he mentioned my children, it all washed through me…God! I was speaking with God in the middle of the grocery store parking lot, and God had been glad to see my children that day.”

She returns to her van and children and then her eight-year-old son says, “You know what Mom? People like that could change the world.” I mean come on? Of course, this is no different than many American, “Christians” these days. We’ve collectively abandoned orthodoxy, and the surety of God’s word for fickle and fleeting emotional ebbs and tides.

In another vignette she writes about the evils of the world. Then makes this dubious statement, “Yet embedded within the killing world is another world, a world forever connected to The Good Kingdom, (Notice how she capitalized, “The Good Kingdom.” This leads us to believe she is writing about God’s Kingdom.) a world that each one of us has known. It stands as our reminder.” It seems that she is trying to establish our preexistence in Heaven. If that is the case, then she is guilty of false teachings.

Mixing all of these heresies, and heterodox teachings together with the rampant emotional manipulation is common among the leaders in the, “New Age, and Emergent Church” movements. It is syncretism at its worst.

It is also apparent from her work that she doesn’t understand the noetic effect of sin, or the curse of the fall. In an encounter with a sick girl, where they both hugged for a prolonged time she wrote, “My darkness was gone. Because She saw my soul and acknowledged it. Because She chose to “sit with me a while.” Because She looked me in the eye and pronounced me good. And somehow, in doing so, She had dispelled my darkness and I became well. I realized, as the girl disappeared from my sight, that it was God who had laid Her head upon my knee and wrapped Her arms around me. And it was God I had held in my arms. God is a sick girl, healing you.

Please note, that again she capitalizes, “She.” Hanes is implying that the girl is God. Then she flatly proclaims the girl to be God. Not only that, but God has pronounced her to be good. This statement lacks any grounding in Biblical truth. As Christians, we understand from the Bible, that we are not good, but rather are sinful. Christians have the righteousness of Christ imputed to them upon repenting of their sins and trusting in the finished work of Christ on the cross for their justification to God. In other words, their righteousness is not their own, but God’s imputed to them.

On page 56 Hanes details how she, through deception, manipulates her husband into leaving Lowe’s hardware store because she doesn’t want to be there. Does that sound like an honest, and earnest Christian wife? How about, “I’d rather not go with you to Lowe’s, but I’d love to spend time with you after. Maybe we can go to dinner?”

Emotions are fickle. If you are counting on feeling God as a way to determine that your faith is true, then you will always be confused by the constant flux of your unbridled emotions. God says in His word, “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?” In James 1:5-8 we read, “But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But he must ask in faith without any doubting, for the one who doubts is like the surf of the sea, driven and tossed by the wind. For that man ought not to expect that he will receive anything from the Lord, being a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.”

You see to have sure faith you must know God by the truth of His word. If you know Him, and His will, you can ask in faith. You can live and have stable emotions because you can temper them with what is true. This is the right way, not emotionalism and experientialism. The emotionalism and experientialism are an empty cistern, that cannot quench your thirst.   Instead trust in Christ. He is the living water that will satisfy your soul forever, and the only way to do this is to know Him by His word. 

Humans are not God. God is omnipresent. Each individual person of the trinity remains separate individual persons, in perfect communion with each other, while one in being. The only person of the godhead who has specific location is the Son, but by the indwelling of the Spirit, and the Spirit coming forth from the Father and Son, economically the Son can be considered omnipresent by the Father and the Spirit. The Spirit unites the believer to the Father and the Son. This is how we are in Christ. A human, who is not Christ, is not God. The only human to every be God is Jesus Christ, and He was not solely human. He was the hypostatic union of human and God natures. Both natures, 100% God and 100% man joined perfectly in the person of Jesus without mixing the natures.

Vignette 12, “God Sings” really gets my hackles up. Doesn’t Hanes know that the unbeliever is at war with God. They are His enemy. He doesn’t love them as a Father. God is angry with the wicked every day according to scripture. Romans 8:8, “Those who are in the flesh cannot please God.” With the reading of every line of, “God Sightings” I agonized, “If I have to read one more expression of panentheism, or any other heresy, I’m going to burn this book.” Reading this book was truly a test of my patience. I wondered to myself, “Has this woman every studied the Bible?”

If vignette 12 ticked me off, vignette 24 sealed the deal. It was titled, “God is an Atheist.” After reading that one, I’m left wondering if the author has taken hallucinogens, or has a mental illness. Run from this book, and never read any of Kelly Hanes’ work until she repents, and trusts in the real God, the God of the Bible, not the one she made up that makes her feel all special. I know she is going to feel attacked after reading this review. Perhaps she’ll take her own advice from vignette 25? I hope my review shakes her out of her blasphemies, heresies, and lies. I hope she is so upset that she repents and comes to true saving faith.

I cannot recommend this work for Christian study. It is not edifying or conducive to genuine maturation of your faith. This is a solid, “Don’t waste your time.” From cover to cover, this book has no redeeming qualities for the Christian, and his library. The author, Kelly Hanes, regardless of the world’s opinions of her qualifications to teach, is Biblically disqualified, and it is well demonstrated by this heretical book that seems to present panentheism, human preexistence, and new age syncretism, as Christian.

For all the other reviewers who clamored their adoration for this book, “What is wrong with you people? Have you never read the Bible? Tolle Lege!”

False Teacher Andrew Wommack (Whoa Mac!) Really, Stop! Stop Teaching Heresy!

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Please Stop Listening To The False Teachings Of Andrew Wommack!  Here is a link to the video of Andrew Wommack teaching so that you know I’m not making this stuff up. https://youtu.be/i4BARuTQ-nc

He relies on his subjective feelings which he believes are being directed by the Holy Spirit to make decisions about where in the Bible he is going to study. This removes the ability to utilize proper hermeneutics. When he does this, he can’t have the broader context needed to harmonize scripture with scripture. This mystical decision making process is abiblical.

After picking the book of Numbers to study from, he skips the importance of the genealogies because he believes them to be tedious and boring. I wonder if he knows what theopneustos means?

At about 8 minutes and 16 seconds in he claims he makes it a habit to not teach things that are new for about a year, and that he sits on them, but of course he is going to break his own rule and teach a new teaching. What does the completely revealed finished word of God have to say about new teachings?

At about the 15 minute mark Andrew starts doing what many other false teachers do, he gets a concordance out and makes a hash out of Hebrew to invent a false teaching that is not in scripture and then impose it on his listeners. He uses it to claim that God does not afflict people. I wonder if he ever heard of Pharaoh, Jonah, Job, or for that matter the curse God inflicts all of Adam’s progeny? Just, wow!… We all know from reading the same scriptures Andrew is twisting, that Moses is disgusted with the people, and their selfish greed, and entitled feelings. Leading them was a great burden.

20 minute mark he starts on again about getting impressions from God and just knowing things in our hearts. This is no substitute for what God actually says in His word. How does one know if the idea that popped into their thoughts was not just of their own imagining, or even worse some demon speaking to them? I know, let’s ask Muhammad, Joseph Smith, or Ellen G. White… NOT!

He keeps abusing 1 Corinthians 10:11-13. I wonder what he would tell the martyrs? Don’t worry, the lions won’t eat you, the flames won’t be that hot… Come on… The intent of God in His word where He says, “God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability” in context means that you can make it through any circumstance by God’s grace. He provides a way out of sin, so that you won’t have to sin while being beheaded burned alive, cut off in traffic, being left behind by an adulterous spouse, the death of a child. You can go through these things, and by His grace, choose to not sin. It doesn’t mean bad things will never happen to you. This is insane.

This idea that the men appointed to help Moses was not from God is just more nonsense. Did not Christ have Apostles? Are the Churches to not have more than one Elder? Come on Andrew… Stop making such a hash out of scripture. You twist it like it is free. One day you’ll have to answer for all your twisting.

@ 26:50 he starts in again about suffering not being God’s will, and he is placing a tremendous works righteousness burden on the people listening to him, that he himself doesn’t even believe or perform. He preaches a, “life enhancement Christianity” that is just not true. We don’t have less suffering in our lives when we come to faith, matter of fact, we suffer for our faith, unless you don’t believe what God incarnate said in His own word. (Phil 1:29, 2 Thes, 1 Peter, and on and on) I can’t even begin to tell you how much it ticks me off to hear him talking about, “God’s best.” How does he know what is God’s best for you? We need to suffer. It is part of growing in faith. It is part of being sanctified. Again, what would this clown tell Polycarp while he was being martyred? “Oh Polycarp, you just don’t lay your burdens down on the Lord enough. You just aren’t using the faith God gave you. You need to try harder to be more spiritual like me because I don’t have any problems…” Yeah, right! Pack it in and go home Andrew before you hurt anyone else!!!

@ 30:10 Andy says, “God doesn’t put any negative things on us.” Well, God says in Isaiah 45:6,7 

” 6 That men may know from the rising to the setting of the sun

That there is no one besides Me.

I am the LORD, and there is no other,

7 The One forming light and creating darkness,

Causing well-being and creating calamity;

I am the LORD who does all these.”

or how about Deuteronomy 32:39,

“‘See now that I, I am He,

And there is no god besides Me;

It is I who put to death and give life.

I have wounded and it is I who heal,

And there is no one who can deliver from My hand.”

Oh and say, let’s not forget the flood, or Sodom and Gomorrah, or plagues and famines sent as discipline upon the people. Andrew’s theology is so anthropocentric it is no wonder his doctrines are so focused on life enhancement through the faith he invented. In Romans 1 we can see God’s punishment in the form of people worshiping created things. This includes anthropocentric religion as well. Romans 1:21-25 “21 For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened. 22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and crawling creatures.

24 Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, so that their bodies would be dishonored among them. 25 For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.” If your theology centers around man, you are an idolater.

@30:43 Wommack’s god doesn’t control any of the negative things that happen to us. His god isn’t sovereign.

So if 1 Corinthians 10 isn’t about not suffering, what is it really about? I’m glad you asked. It is about being tempted to sin against the Lord in several different ways. It is focused on the glory of God, and obedience to Him as worship. If you look at the verses in context you’ll see that, not only did God allow suffering, He caused it as punishment and discipline on His people for giving in to sin. Let’s take a look at the scripture in context. 1 Corinthians 10:1-13

” 1 For I do not want you to be unaware, brethren, that our fathers were all under the cloud and all passed through the sea; 2 and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea; 3 and all ate the same spiritual food; 4 and all drank the same spiritual drink, for they were drinking from a spiritual rock which followed them; and the rock was Christ. 5 Nevertheless, with most of them God was not well-pleased; for they were laid low in the wilderness.

6 Now these things happened as examples for us, so that we would not crave evil things as they also craved. 7 Do not be idolaters, as some of them were; as it is written, “THE PEOPLE SAT DOWN TO EAT AND DRINK, AND STOOD UP TO PLAY.” 8 Nor let us act immorally, as some of them did, and twenty-three thousand fell in one day. 9 Nor let us try the Lord, as some of them did, and were destroyed by the serpents. 10 Nor grumble, as some of them did, and were destroyed by the destroyer. 11 Now these things happened to them as an example, and they were written for our instruction, upon whom the ends of the ages have come. 12 Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed that he does not fall. 13 No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it.”

In verses 1-5 we see that the ones, who persevered in faith in Christ, were the ones whom God was well pleased with. The rest God was putting under discipline. Verse 6 is pretty self-explanatory. Don’t go after the sin that they went after, duh! The first group of sinners mentioned was the idolaters, then the immoral out of which God killed 23,000. Next were the ones who doubted and tried the Lord, He sent serpents to kill some of them. Then there were the grumblers, the ones who complained about God’s providence. God destroyed them with the destroyer, an angel sent to kill them in the desert. After reading all of this in addition to the verse that so often gets twisted, we can see that God is talking about sin here. In Christ, He has provided a way out for His elect. We can choose to not sin, in any given temptation because we are no longer slaves to sin, but to Christ. The Holy Spirit is in us, we are born again, made dead to sin and alive to Christ. When temptation comes, fight against it with the promise of the gospel, and a view of Christ’s sufferings on the cross on behalf of you, because of your sins. If you do that, you won’t want to add suffering to Christ so to speak, not that you could, but figuratively because as we know all of your sin, past, present, and future, was paid for over 2000 years ago by Jesus.

I watched the rest of the video and there was more and more about God telling you what to do in some mysterious way, via a word, or prompting. It was getting tedious and sickening to hear him keep burdening people with uncertainty, when the Bible is so clear. People, IF YOU WANT TO KNOW WHAT GOD WANTS YOU TO DO, READ THE BIBLE!!!

@ 38:20 He talks about his skin cancer, and how he is committed to healing, so he won’t go to the doctor over it. Now you know as well as I do, even though he told other people to do what they wanted in that regard, he made it sound like he was superior and the example, because he is committed to healing. Obviously if they decided to go to the doctor, they must not be. This is spiritual malpractice. He could be costing people their health with this pernicious nonsense.

He then goes on to tell people they have created their financial burdens themselves. I agree that some people have, but what about medical hardships that cause financial hardships, oh wait… That’s your fault to for not being committed to healing. Silly me…

If this one lesson didn’t offer enough health and  prosperity false gospel for you, don’t worry…  He has many more available on youtube for me and others like me to correct.  Please take care, and read your Bible.  I agree with Andrew on that.  Read your Bible apart from his teachings.  Systematically study it from beginning to end.  If you do that, and still agree with Wommack, I pray the Holy Spirit will correct you.  Here is some more on Wommack.

Rob Bell, a Picture of a Heretical, New Age, Emergent Movement Guru.

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If the gospel isn’t good news for everybody, then it isn’t good news for anybody.” Rob Bell

This quote was presented to me without context as a standalone statement. First I will address it as is. Then I will address it in context to the entire quote.

As a direct answer to this ludicrous assertion I will simply reference the mind of God revealed in His Word.

“ 18For the word of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.

19For it is written,
“I WILL DESTROY THE WISDOM OF THE WISE,
AND THE CLEVERNESS OF THE CLEVER I WILL SET ASIDE.”

20Where is the wise man? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? 21For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not come to know God, God was well-pleased through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe. 22For indeed Jews ask for signs and Greeks search for wisdom; 23but we preach Christ crucified, to Jews a stumbling block and to Gentiles foolishness, 24but to those who are the called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. 25Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.” 1 Corinthians 1:18-25 (NASB)

To the person who is a friend of the world, the gospel is foolish, and they are enemies of God.


1What is the source of quarrels and conflicts among you? Is not the source your pleasures that wage war in your members? 2You lust and do not have; so you commit murder. You are envious and cannot obtain; so you fight and quarrel. You do not have because you do not ask. 3You ask and do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, so that you may spend it on your pleasures. 4You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. 5Or do you think that the Scripture speaks to no purpose: “He jealously desires the Spirit which He has made to dwell in us”? 6But He gives a greater grace. Therefore it says, “GOD IS OPPOSED TO THE PROUD, BUT GIVES GRACE TO THE HUMBLE.” 7Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. 8Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. 9Be miserable and mourn and weep; let your laughter be turned into mourning and your joy to gloom. 10Humble yourselves in the presence of the Lord, and He will exalt you.” James 4:1-10 (NASB)

Only the people being saved will appreciate the gospel. Everyone else will hate it to varying degrees. Some will seem indifferent to it, while others hate for it will be evident. If two people are looking at Christ and His gospel, and one has a new nature that desires the things of God and hates sin, and the other person is not regenerate, they are still in the world, and their fleshly passions still rule them, the first one will see Christ and His gospel as exceedingly good news to be desired above all things. He will be like the man who sells all he owns to purchase the field with the precious pearl in it. The other man will think the first is a fool, and mock him. He will spend his life a slave to his own pleasures.

Now I will address the quote in context. I had to look it up, as I do not read Rob Bell’s works as he is a heretic and outside of orthodoxy. It was from his book, “Velvet Elvis.”

If the gospel isn’t good news for everybody, then it isn’t good news for anybody. And this is because the most powerful things happen when the church surrenders its desire to convert people and convince them to join. It is when the church gives itself away in radical acts of service and compassion, expecting nothing in return, that the way of Jesus is most vividly put on display. To do this, the church must stop thinking about everybody primarily in categories of in or out, saved or not, believer or nonbeliever. Besides the fact that these terms are offensive to those who are the “un” and “non”, they work against Jesus’ teachings about how we are to treat each other. Jesus commanded us to love our neighbor, and our neighbor can be anybody. We are all created in the image of God, and we are all sacred, valuable creations of God. Everybody matters. To treat people differently based on who believes what is to fail to respect the image of God in everyone. As the book of James says, “God shows no favoritism.” So we don’t either.” Rob Bell

Bell is attempting to relate his opening statement to a homogenous group called, “the church.” He tries to relate the two by claiming that, “the church” is wrong for, “trying to convert people and convince them to join.” He claims that instead, “It is when the church gives itself away in radical acts of service and compassion, expecting nothing in return, that the way of Jesus is most vividly put on display.”

Bell does not define what, “the church” is. His opening statement is not supported by the following sentences of the paragraph. As I demonstrated above, the Bible is clear about whom the gospel is good news to. It cannot be good news to those who are ultimately to perish outside of Christ. They will reject it, and continue on in rebellion to God. Using this statement to start his paragraph was not proper. I understand what he was attempting to say in his inaccurate use of language. First, let’s assume that when he references, “the church” that he means all of the people, past, present, and future, from all nations, and tribes, from all over the planet, who have been regenerated by the Holy Spirit, being brought to new life, who see how detestable their sins are, and are humbled by them in contrast to the holiness and righteousness of God, and have repented of their sins, and put their trust and faith in God incarnate, their Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, who suffered the penalty of their sins on the cross of His crucifixion, paying for them completely, dying, being buried, and resurrected on the third day, conquering death and sin on behalf of His elect. He would have been more accurate to say, “The Church should demonstrate the grace, and sacrificial love of Christ to the lost world, in their words, and deeds, motivated by their new natures, and renewed minds, by the will of God the Father, and the power of the Holy Spirit working in and through them.”

Words have meanings, and the imprecise language of Rob Bell and his ilk causes much misunderstanding and confusion. If he desires to be understood properly he should be more precise.

Another statement was presented along with the first, by the individual who presented the statement to me. They wrote, “Blessed are those who are more right than others.” Said Jesus never.”

First, this statement implies that the Jesus of this statement doesn’t care about being doctrinally accurate. It also implies that to be concerned with doctrinal accuracy is to be equated with un-Christ-like attitudes.

We know from reading the progressive revelation of scripture, which is the mind of the incarnate and eternal Word, who being God Himself, in the second person of the Trinity, revealed His will for us, and to us, in the scriptures, has explained true doctrines and refuted false ones, as well as condemned those who taught false doctrines as teachers of the devil’s doctrines. He called them, children of their father the devil.

43“Why do you not understand what I am saying? It is because you cannot hear My word. 44“You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies. 45“But because I speak the truth, you do not believe Me. 46“Which one of you convicts Me of sin? If I speak truth, why do you not believe Me? 47“He who is of God hears the words of God; for this reason you do not hear them, because you are not of God.” John 8:43-47 (NASB)

Jesus is the true and living way, and as we can see from what he said in John 8, He is definitely concerned with true doctrine about Him. If someone says they know Jesus, I would ask them questions about Jesus to see if we are talking about the same Jesus. What I know about my Savior is very important. It is the difference of knowing the true Jesus as He has expressed Himself in scripture, and knowing a cheap counterfeit that cannot save anyone. While it is true Jesus never specifically said the above quote, it is also true that contrary to the intent of the quote Jesus did always teach the truth, and require it of His followers. Don’t be fooled by slick sayings. As God said,

4I say this so that no one will delude you with persuasive argument. 5For even though I am absent in body, nevertheless I am with you in spirit, rejoicing to see your good discipline and the stability of your faith in Christ.

6Therefore as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, 7having been firmly rooted and now being built up in Him and established in your faith, just as you were instructed, and overflowing with gratitude.

      8See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception, according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary principles of the world, rather than according to Christ.” Colossians 2:4-8 (NASB)

Material and Formal Heresy.

Material heresy is forgiven with all of your other sins upon justification. During your sanctification as you mature you will repent from any material heresies you believed and conform to orthodoxy. I didn’t understand the Trinity at all as a young Christian and when I came to understand that partialism was a heresy I repented. I was a regenerated justified believer, but was wrong about the Trinity, until someone explained it in a way I could understand. A formal heretic would reject orthodoxy even after correction and discipline, proving they were false converts to begin with.  (this is a general answer for all incorrect understandings that new believers might have, given they are true converts.)

“God Wins” from Author Mark Galli, is a Mature Response, to Bell’s, “Love Wins.”

Hello, Soapbox fans.  Today we are going to look at the book, “God Wins” written by Mark Galli the Senior Managing Editor for Christianity Today.  In his book, Mark answers many of the questions raised by Rob Bell’s book, “Love Wins.”  First and foremost, I have to applaud Mark for his maturity, and propriety in handling the heresies of Rob Bell.  I tried to read Bell’s book without getting angry and could not.  It made me furious with him every time.  The slick, used car salesman, shysterly, manipulative, methods he employed to convince people of heresy seemed to me, to slip supplely, from this silver tongued devil’s mouth.  So, bravo Mark!  You are a better man than I, and I mean that.  Furthermore, I admire Mark’s maturity when dealing with this book.  Mark even explains his reasons for doing so in Appendix 3.  

I am Lutheresque in my polemics at times.  I tend to attack, without considering the effect I’ll have on the followers of the false teacher.  Instead of seeing the correction and accepting it, they see me slaughtering their golden calf.  When I read a work like this, I can see how it is better for  the sheep.  In dealing with the sheep we must be gentle.  If this book were for Rob Bell alone, I would expect a more belligerent approach.

Mark takes a very thoughtful and thorough approach addressing the major issues of heresy in Bell’s book.  It is almost impossible to talk about Mark’s book without mentioning Bell’s book, since it is an antithetical response to  Bell’s.  As Galli draws out, isolates, and entertains, the questions Bell asks, he offers orthodox answers and corrections that are easily understood.  He explains doctrines that the Church has affirmed for over two thousand years.  Don’t think that Galli is using kid gloves.  He deals with the false gospel, and universalism of Bell.  He even explains and contrasts the differences.

I encourage all of you who have read Bell’s book, have family who are fans of Bell, or plan on reading Bell’s book, to read, “God Wins.”  For those of you with Bell fans in the family, after you have finished reading, “God Wins” give it to them as a gift, and pray for them to accept godly correction with humble repentance, and godly sorrow.  

ISBN-13: 9781414366661

Hyper-Arminianism, What!?

I’m a Calvinist. I get very tired of hearing people say, “Hyper-Calvinist” as if that is a thing. Instead of just addressing the particular heresy that a Pseudo-Calvinist embraces, people label them, “Hyper-Calvinist.” Do we see Calvinists labeling Arminians as, “Hyper-Arminians” if they are actually Semi-Pelagians or Free Grace heretics? No, we just site the specific heresy. Then, inform the heretic of their error in hopes that they are a material heretic. We hope that they would then repent and adhere to orthodoxy. Sometimes of course they will not repent. In their refusal they prove themselves to be formal heretics. Labeling a heretic a, “Hyper-Calvinist” casts Calvinists in a negative light. Often times Arminians will launch into a polemic against Calvinists. They do this, because in their minds there is such a thing as a, “Hyper-Calvinist.” This artifice is a construct of a prejudicial person. The bias is one that we as Calvinists must start to debunk. We have been guilty of embracing this term. It needs to be retired from our nomenclature.

Credit to Sacredsandwich.com for the meme 🙂

Proof-texting, its dangers, and benefits.

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            Proof-texting is the practice of quoting a verse, or verses from the text of the Bible, to support, or refute a doctrine.  This practice has been used by the orthodox and the heretic.  The dangers of proof-texting are varied and manifold.  With proper presuppositions proof-texting can be a valuable tool for supporting orthodox doctrines. 

            First, we will go over the problems with proof-texting.  The biggest problem is when a person or group starts with a false presupposition.  For example, a Mormon starts with the presupposition that Jesus is a created being.  They hold this false presupposition because they believe the words of a false prophet, and teacher in authority over God’s very own word.  The Seventh Day Adventists, Jehovah’s Witnesses, and Muslims, do the same thing. 

With this presupposition when they run into texts like John 3:16 “…For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life…”  They wrongly understand the word, “begotten” to mean that Jesus was the progeny of the Father.  They then, in turn use this as a proof-text for their false doctrine that deny the eternal deity of Jesus, in stark disregard for His proclamation of being the, “I Am.”  This, in turn requires more eisegesis, and proof-texting, in an attempt to refute the true doctrines, in conflict with their false ones.  When apologetically engaged with a heretic or cult member they are usually more than thrilled to proof-text ad nauseum.  This can quickly become counterproductive.  If this is done in a public forum it can be disastrous.  The onlookers could be convinced of the heretical doctrines.

            Our apologetics should be from a capable well rounded understanding of the entire Bible in its own context.  It should be founded on the presupposition that the Bible is the truth, and the authority, on What God has to say to man.  When we start with a true presupposition, and are exegetical in our reading of the Bible, we can proof-text like Paul to the Jews in Hebrews.  When proof-texting is done correctly it can win people’s minds to the truths of the Bible.  There is nothing like a good section of scripture quoted in context at the right time to hammer home sound doctrine.  God’s word is authoritative and when we speak truthfully with the authority of scripture it is a powerful thing to witness.