Monday, May 23, 2011

False Start Rapture and Our Poor Christian Education & Theology: Calvinist, Dispensationalists, Armenians ...

False Start Rapture and Our Poor Christian Education and Theology: From Protestants, Liberals, Conservatives, Calvinist, Dispensationalists, Armenians and Pentecostals

This weekend was jokingly known as "Rapture Weekend" by those mocking radio Bible teacher Harold Camping, an 89 year old radio station chain owner, who was trained as an engineer. His false teaching made many sell all, give a lot, if not all of their money, and travel with a fleet of vehicles with fancy signs painted on them and buy billboards throughout the land to spread the news that the "rapture" or the return of Christ , the eschaton, would occur this past Saturday at 6:00A.M. May 21st 2011. My friend Johnny Pless noted that while waiting for this apocalypse I was using my blog to write about my views of the 11 greatest University of Georgia Football players in history. I guess I wanted to get my mind off of horrible theology and religious nonsense. Now it is time to look at the horrible Christian Education, theology, doctrine that has not just been put out by a heretical radio station owner in California.
There is enough blame to go along with our group of Baptists, Methodists, Presbyterians, Catholics, Anglicans, Episcopalians, Armenians, Calvinists and Dispensationalists. Today as a group those who profess Jesus Christ as Lord have clearly done a poor job of getting the world ready for the "Blessed Hope" of the appearance of Christ or for those who die before His return to meet Him for reward or judgement.

This article will cover the bad theology and laziness of our churches, conservative and liberal, and how they got us in our spiritual malaise.
1. Harold Camping's -there are lot's of them.
2. Conservative Seminaries.
3. Liberal Seminaries.
4. Rotten Doctrine or Hatred of Biblical Doctrine.

1. Harold Camping - is an 89 year old leader of Family International Radio, a chain of Christian radio stations, based in California. He was trained as an engineer at Cal-Berkley. His group started as with some people of the Christian Reformed Church, Bible Baptist, so called conservative Presbyterians and others. He has gone from a 5-point Calvinist to an extreme free-will position. He has set many dates for the return of Christ. His most recent wrong declaration was Saturday May 21st 2011. He has caused many of his followers financial ruin, humiliation and a shaken faith. He has caused confusion and derision from those who are not saved. We all in the church have been told to hear and read the clear words of Jesus Christ in Matthew 24:36
“But concerning that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only."[ESV]
But no, he gave a false interpretation to this passage and harmed and ridiculed the cause of Christ. Harold Camping, radio station operator, not a pastor, or biblical scholar, in the past decade called out all, ALL Christians to leave any and every church because ALL churches on Earth were apostate.
Like the serpent in the Garden of Eden, Camping mixed a little biblical truth and added his teaching from his reclusive driven induced craziness.
Take your favorite false teacher. He, like the serpent in the Garden of Eden, takes one easy to understand part of the Truth and goes his own unscriptural way.

A woman once told John Wesley "God does not need your Oxford education." Wesley replied "And He does not need your ignorance either."
American seminaries, the educators of preachers and teachers, what has happened on your watch?

We send people to Sunday School but as a group we are coming home stupid. Our people are ripe for false prophets of all stripes.

2. Conservative Seminaries- What have your alumni taught? In the late 1979, the conservative wing of the Southern Baptist Convention started to overtake the power structure of the convention and seminaries. I have heard horror stories concerning that time period from solid Christian pastors and faculty concerning heresies taught by some of the denominational schools financed from the tithes of faithful poor working couples, widows, middle class married and single parent families,and the wealthy philanthropist, thinking they were supporting God's work. The Southern Baptist Church I grew up in decried the turn of events and that academic integrity was at stake from the pulpit. We weekly in youth group, the pulpit and Sunday School talked about "strokes" "warm fuzzies" (I kid not) and rapping (not the music kind but expressing your emotions-it was the 1970's). I thought we were a conservative church since we had a preacher with a doctorate who wore a dark suit. The sermons were dull so I assumed they were conservative. The church of my youth eased into the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, the self proclaimed moderates (declared liberal by the conservatives). The Sunday School literature was full of pop psychology -like how to relieve stress. I went to other churches as I grew into young adulthood. The conservatives had Sunday School literature also. Cover up the authors names and you could not guess which was which. Something was missing in both. Theology and the demonized "D" word Doctrine was absent from the teaching. Doctrine seemed to be talked about but not taught.
Conservatives who do not teach doctrine get Harold Camping's. Liberals get Rob Bell's.

3. Liberal seminaries - they often used to describe themselves as "post Christian" or often today schools of religious or theological education. At the one I attended,several teachers made it a point to say their job was not to train pastors, that was what the church was for. The church (the denomination I was a member of then) said they sent us to seminary to learn how to become pastors.
Most liberal seminaries admit it (just not when sending a speaker to a local church in front of the folks who are paying the bills). Most people would label all the Southern Baptist seminaries, and Dallas School of Theology as conservative due to their inerrant view of the Bible and view of Salvation known only through Christ Alone. Liberal seminaries do not. Liberal seminaries do not have an inerrant view of the Bible. They support women's ordination by societal norms and not by dealing with the Scriptural text as the authority on the matter. There are conservatives who support the ordination of women through their interpretation of Scripture. These schools will proudly defend heretical teaching as academic freedom-that many true believers pay for from the offering plate. Many are historical, poorly attended and have great endowments so they can maintain and ignore their Christian and denominational heritage.
And here is the main way liberal seminaries cause Rob Bell's, they deny as a group penal substitution also known as substitutionary atonement. That is they deny that Jesus Christ died as a "propitiation" or for the punishment of our sins. You may find a few token members of the orthodox faith there but you would have to dig to find them. They deny as a majority that Jesus Christ died to pay for the penalty of our sins. In the liberal seminary I graduated, a non Southern Baptist seminary, I had a female student in a class, who was Jewish, burst in to tears about our class being too Christological (Too much content about Jesus.). She was then consoled by the teacher. I have heard in class discussions about salvation being holistic -physical, societal and the cross just showed how much God loved us. A partial truth before heresy comes serpent style. I heard from students and teachers "penal substitution" was "divine child abuse". I heard a fellow student laughed at bringing up John 3:16 as an example for us to be saved from our sins in that conversation. Now you produce Rob Bells's instead of Harold Camping's. Both lead away from the God of the Bible.

4. Rotten Doctrine and hated Biblical theology.
The body of Christ is suffering from Calvinist more concerned with 5 points than conversion of the lost, Armenian TV preachers railing against "Eternal Security", Dispensational preachers who can not talk about any thing but the Millennial Kingdom, Liberals who can not talk about anything but the evil Southern Baptist, Southern Baptist riding the latest "Purpose Driven- Jabez - NOOMA-Go Green-latest prepackaged junk", Pentecostals who will not put in check their own who preach the "prosperity gospel" and "slaying in the Spirit" every time a camera is on.

Maybe these guys are running out of things to preach on. I do not understand. The late Atlanta Journal Constitution columnist Lewis Grizzard talked about his country church preacher of his youth. Grizzard reasoned preaching could not be that hard, the preacher had that big black book to go by.

When the gospel is just not enough, or believed or practiced, we as the church let our message get hijacked as the message of the church - repeatedly.

Why is it hard to share the Gospel to the world? In the fullness of the Trinity God sent His son to die on the cross to pay for the sins of many including me. God sent His Holy Spirit to convict us of our sins. We must repent and believe the Gospel as we are saved by the perfect life death burial and resurrection of the God Man Jesus Christ. We gain righteousness status before God and eternal life with the Father. We miss the wrath to come. We get to evangelize our loved ones who are lost and learn to love and evangelize those we once hated.

We, as the church have acted as Arrogant Eggheads to Hard Headed Lone Rangers in goofing up the gospel. Look what the world thinks the gospel we are displaying is. Our preaching and teaching time is precious.
Let's get to work!

In Christ Alone!

Fletcher Law

No comments:

Post a Comment