It is now nearly 500 years since October 31, 1517. We need a new Reformation-this time more biblical and thorough. We are drowning in "political correctness." Having changed from a president who couldn't define "is," we have one who persists in calling Islam "peace" in the face of mountains of evidence to the contrary. What the Bible clearly calls sin is whitewashed as "alternate" styles of living. Nothing is wrong, so nothing is right. The church has joined the world, the gospel has been compromised, and we think God doesn't care.
Elijah's words come across 3,000 years of history to rebuke us as he did Israel: How long halt ye between two opinions? If the Lord be God, follow him: but if Baal, then follow him. (1 Ki 18:21) More than 90 percent of Americans claim to believe in God. About 80 percent call themselves Christians. But when asked to define God, the answers range from "Mother Earth" to a "higher power." Even many who claim to be born again deny that Jesus Christ is the "only way to God."
About 70 percent of Americans, 64 percent who call themselves born again, and 40 percent of self-proclaimed evangelicals reject the idea of absolute truth. And most of those who claim to believe in absolutes have fallen victims to a universal reluctance to speak the truth. In a prophetic description of our day, God warned: "And judgment is turned away backward, and justice standeth afar off: for truth is fallen in the street, and equity cannot enter....And he that departeth from evil maketh himself a prey: and the Lord saw it, and it displeased him..." (Is 59:14,15).
Even the church has forgotten that the God of the Bible is "the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob" (Ex 3:15,16, and 11 more times). No matter what one thinks of Jews, God chose them as a "special people unto himself, above all people that are upon the face of the earth" (Dt 7:6), the "apple of His eye" (Dt 32:10; Lam 2:18; Zec 2:8). He gave them the land of Canaan "from the river of Egypt unto...the river Euphrates" (Gn 15:18) to be their "everlasting possession" (Gn 17:7,8; 1 Chr 16:16-18, etc.), promising that Israel's latter end would be better than her beginning (Ezk 36:8-38; 37:21-28, etc.), and that she would never cease to be a nation (Jer 31:35,36). He declared that the land of Israel was His land never to be sold (Lv 25:23) and that all nations would be punished for dividing His land (Joel 3:2)
. This is God's Word! World leaders (including professing Christians, like former President Bush and Condoleezza Rice) have openly defied God by dividing His land, giving most of it to Arabs who fraudulently call themselves "Palestinians," claiming that Israel is occupying their land. In fact, they have stolen land God gave to Israel. (See Judgment Day.) Forgotten is God's promise to Abraham: "I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee; and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed" (Gn 12:3).
Both the world and the church have spurned this promised blessing and are calling God's curse upon themselves for their treatment of Israel! We call upon Western leaders and Muslims to repent of their atheism, false gods, and rebellion. God might then have mercy on today's world as He did on Nineveh. Like politicians, religious leaders, too, defy God. In 2002, D. James Kennedy, R.C. Sproul, and dozens of others declared that Israel has no special title to land in the Middle East, having been replaced by the church. They claimed that all of God's "land promises specific to Israel in the Old Testament were fulfilled under Joshua."
One trembles at their defiance of God, who has said: "Behold, the days come...that they shall no more say, The Lord liveth, which brought up the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt; but, the Lord liveth, which led the seed of the house of Israel out of the north country, and from all countries whither I had driven them; and they shall dwell in their own land" (Jer 23:7,8). The obvious fulfillment of such promises today (not in Joshua's day) rebukes those who say that the church has replaced Israel! In the last 60 years, Jews have returned by the millions to Israel from more than 100 nations.
Those who deny God's promises to Israel for today need to repent! It is shocking how many Christian organizations oppose Israel. We have exposed Bob Finley, Christian Aid Mission's founder, with anti-Semitic revision of history, lies against Israel-even blaming her for Muslim terrorism and exonerating Islamic murderers of Israeli women and children. (See Q&A Jan '03.) The Mennonite Central Committee, having worked in "Palestine" for more than 50 years, has nothing good to say about Israel, whom it condemns for its "occupation" of Palestine and for its "58-year-old denial of fundamental rights for nearly seven million Palestinian refugees"-a false accusation.
World Vision (WV) is one of the largest Christian relief and development organizations in the world, with a budget of $1 billion. WV helps "Palestinians" but not Israel, for whom it has nothing but criticism. Nearly 3,000 of its 22,500 staff don't even pretend to be Christians. Many are Muslims. WV says, "They share our values." What does that mean? Isn't the gospel of Christ, which alone brings salvation, the greatest blessing WV could bring anywhere?
But WV doesn't share the gospel. How could it? Material aid is given, but neglected is Christ's warning that to gain the whole world and lose one's soul is to lose all! World Vision needs to repent or stop pretending to represent Christ. Christians seem prone to jump on every folly invented by "science" for doomsayers and publicity-seekers.
Christian leaders are joining the "global warming" hoax to support Gaia, or Mother Earth. Yet Earth was probably far warmer before the flood, when life flourished as never since; there was a Medieval Warm Period ad 800-1300; Earth has been both colder and warmer than now in the last 100 years; and as recently as 1940-1975, the warnings were all about the coming ice age. A network of evangelical leaders recently issued an urgent warning about global warming titled, "Climate Change: An Evangelical Call to Action."
It was signed by more than 20 NAE board members and about 80 other Christian leaders, most of them heads of Christian colleges, denominations, or other organizations (among them Timothy George, Jack Hayford, Duane Litfin, Brian McLaren, David Neff, Ron Sider, Jim Wallis, Rick Warren, and Thomas Wang). It echoes Al Gore's one-sided film, An Inconvenient Truth, widely refuted by climatologists. Those interested should read the speech delivered by Senator James Inhofe on the Senate floor September 25, 2006 (http://epw.senate.gov/speechitem.cfm?party=rep&id=263759).
Paul warned Timothy (and us today) that the faith would be opposed by false "science": "avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called: which some professing have erred concerning the faith" (1 Tm 6:20,21). The theories of local flood advocates and theistic evolutionists have invaded our Christian colleges, churches, and media. This is false "science" opposing God's truth, and it has so much biblical and scientific evidence against it that supporters ought to be ashamed and repent.
The Bible states: "the mountains were covered...all in whose nostrils was the breath of life...died....Every living substance was destroyed which was upon the face of the ground" (Gn 7:20-23, etc.); "the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished" (2 Pt 3:6). Yet John Stott writes, "The flood seems to have been a comparatively local-though widespread-disaster," and Billy Graham agrees. Evolution has been thoroughly refuted by true science. (See In Six Days and In the Beginning in Resource Pages). Theistic evolution ("Progressive Creationism") slanders God's character by having Him use such a cruel, inefficient, and tedious method of "creation."
Yet Hugh Ross writes, "[M]y acceptance of Adam and Eve as historical is not incompatible with my belief that several forms of pre-Adamic 'hominid' seem to have existed for thousands of years previously....It is conceivable that God created Adam out of one of them...." So Christ's mother may have been descended from primal slime and soulless brutes as even John Ankerberg (like Graham and Dobson) apparently believes? The Bible declares that death entered the world through Adam's sin (Rom 5:12), not through "natural selection,"_which filled the earth with dead bodies before Adam "evolved."
Those who hold this wicked theory need to repent on their faces before the Creator! We have previously referred to the Renovaré Spiritual Formation Bible, touted as "The Bible As It Was Intended to Be" in a two-thirds-page ad in Christianity Today (Jul '05), next to the masthead declaring that Billy Graham was the founder and J.I. Packer one of the Executive Editors. In its notes, 50 "biblical scholars" declare that the first 11 chapters of Genesis, foundational to the entire Bible, came from "Near Eastern religious narrative and mythology [and] were reshaped with monotheistic intent"!
Yet Jesus and the apostles referred to Adam and Eve, the creation, and the flood as historical (Mt 19:4, 24:38; Mk 10:6; 13:19; Lk 17:26-32; Rom 1:20, 5:14; 1 Cor 15:22, 45-47; Col 1:16; 1 Tm 2:13; Heb 1:10, 9:4, 11:7; 1 Pt 3:20; 2 Pt 2:5,6; Jude 1:14, etc.). The Renovaré "scholars" treat Israel as replaced by the church, consider the prophets as poets, deny that the Pentateuch was written by Moses, Isaiah by Isaiah, Daniel by Daniel, etc. But Jesus and the apostles treated all of the Bible as inspired of God (Mt 12:40, 42, 23:35; Lk 24:27, 44,45; Rom 15:4; 2 Tm 3:15-17; 2 Pt 1:19-21, etc.). Renovaré downplays the powerful Old Testament prophecies, which are the foundation of the faith and vital to the salvation of mankind-even denying that Isaiah 53 foretells Christ's sufferings for our sins!
The contributors, endorsers, and those who read this "Bible" need to fall on their faces and repent for their mockery of God's Holy Word! Christian publishers began to put profits ahead of sound doctrine, made a lot of money by giving readers what they wanted instead of the biblical truth they needed, then sold out to the world monetarily as they already had spiritually.
Zondervan is now owned by Fox News and Rupert Murdoch, twice knighted by the past pope and a member of the Pontifical Order of St. Gregory the Great. He has consistently made TV shows aimed at destroying the family and pursues his godless ambitions through a vast empire, of which "Christian publishing" has become one part. Murdoch published The Purpose-Driven Life, and Rick Warren has claimed to be his pastor.1 We don't have space to name other major "Christian" publishers who have also sold out to the world (see TBC Extra Page Aug '06). It is too late to stop this trend now.
The Roman Catholic Church has been in apostasy for 1,300 years while persecuting and killing true Christians. It has never repented of this evil. Though it proclaims a false gospel of indulgences, Christ being sacrificed in a wafer over and over, and prayers to Mary and the "saints" for salvation, it is now enjoying the support of leading evangelicals in a way that would have shocked true Christians only 50 years ago. Those involved in this seduction of lost souls need to repent in deep sorrow.
Nearly 50 years ago, Billy Graham declared, "Anyone who makes a decision at our meetings is...referred to a local clergyman-Protestant, Catholic or Jewish."2 For more than 50 years, Billy has affirmed Roman Catholicism as the true gospel and has sent Roman Catholics who come forward at his crusades back to the Catholic churches they had left. Billy praised John Paul II as a preacher of the true gospel3 and declared that he and the Pope agreed on almost everything.
Yet John Paul II (as does his Church), looked to Mary instead of Christ for salvation. In his Last Will and Testament of March 6, 1979, he entrusted "that decisive moment [of death] to the Mother of Christ and of the Church [and] of my hope...." His Apostolic Letter of October 16, 2002, ended thus: O Blessed Rosary of Mary...our comfort in the hour of death: yours our final kiss as life ebbs away...the last word from our lips will be your sweet name...O Refuge of Sinners....
Richard Land, president of the Southern Baptists' Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, praised John Paul II's "staunch defense of traditional Christian faith...."4 Pat Robertson enthused, "Pope John Paul II stands like a rock...in his clear enunciation of the foundational principles of the Christian faith."5 Jack Van Impe hailed the Pope as a staunch defender of the faith and calls the Catechism of the Catholic Church biblical. Billy Graham has praised Bishop Fulton Sheen as the "greatest communicator of the 20th century,"6 Though Sheen preached a false gospel, and his hope of heaven was that Mary would let him in because of his 40 pilgrimages to Marian shrines at Fatima and Lourdes,7 Graham expressed his gratitude to Sheen "for his ministry and his focus on Christ."8
When Sheen died, Billy said, "I...look forward to our reunion in heaven."9 J.I. Packer, a signatory to "Evangelicals and Catholics Together,"_who called John Paul II "a fine Christian man,"10 had already many years ago declared, "Catholics are among the most loyal and virile brothers evangelicals can find these days."11 As early as 1992, in The Body, Chuck Colson called for ecumenical union with Rome.
Likewise John Stott has said, "Evangelicals should join...in working toward full communion with the Roman Catholic Church."12 These men and many others need to repent for endorsing a false gospel that has led multitudes to hell. There are so many false prophets on radio and TV (most of them on TBN) that we couldn't begin to name them all. The most popular today is Benny Hinn, praised by evangelical leaders (including Jerry Falwell). Hinn's false prophecies are too many to recite. One is enough: on December 31, 1989, claiming that he was in the very throne room of God, Hinn declared: "The Lord also tells me...about '94 or '95, no later than that, God will destroy the homosexual community of America...by fire...."13 It didn't happen. Yet the more false prophecies he utters, the larger Hinn's following grows and the louder do Paul Crouch and his TBN dupes praise him.
Robert Schuller said that if all of his descendants became Muslims, it would not bother him. Multitudes who call themselves Christians and are not have heaped to themselves false teachers who tell them what they want to hear. Some of the worst heretics and practitioners of the occult, while claiming to be Christians, have gotten together in what they call the Chrysostom Society. It began with Richard Foster, Calvin Miller, and Karen Mains, joined later by Eugene Peterson.
"They felt it was really important to just get together, write together, and believe in each other as practitioners of a craft to the glory of God."14 It is a "craft," all right. Truth has been assassinated by political correctness, the gospel has fallen victim to "we must not offend other religions," God is being mocked, and eternal souls are being robbed of the salvation that is only in Jesus Christ. That tragedy prevails in nearly all churches. Let us weep and repent for the church, for our country, for ourselves, and speak the truth in love. -TBC ---------------------------------------------------------------------------- Endnotes ---------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1. Marc Gunther, Fortune Magazine, October 31, 2005. 2. San Francisco News, November 11, 1957. 3. Saturday Evening Post, January/February 1980. 4. Adelle M. Banks, Religion News Service, April 11, 2005. 5. Pat Robertson, The Turning Tide (Word, 1993), 279. 6. Ad for Sheen Gems: The Best of Fulton J. Sheen video, vol 1-2, quoting Billy Graham. 7. The Woman I Love video (Clifton, NJ: Keep the Faith). 8. Billy Graham, Just As I Am: The Autobiography of Billy Graham (HarperSanFrancisco/Zondervan, 1997), 692-93. 9. Nashua Telegram, December 10, 1979. 10._Take Heed Ministries, Belfast Northern Ireland, March 1999. 11. Christianity Today, May 17, 1985. 12. Arthur Johnston, Battle for World Evangelism (Tyndale House Publishers, 1978), 328. 13. G. Richard Fisher and M. Kurt Goedelman, The Confusing World of Benny Hinn (St. Louis, MO: Personal Freedom Outreach, 2002), 199-200. 14. Mars Hill Review, 1995, "A Conversation with Eugene Peterson." ---------------------------------------------------------------------------- Quotable ---------------------------------------------------------------------------- The chief danger that confronts the coming century will be religion without the Holy Ghost, Christianity without Christ, forgiveness without repentance, salvation without regeneration, politics without God, heaven without hell. William Booth, founder of The Salvation Army, in late 1800s