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“EVANGELICAL” BELIEVES IN BREATHING GOD

From  – www.wayoflife.org

Leonard Sweet, a very influential “evangelical,” believes you can breath God in your nostrils. In his 2012 book I Am A Follower, Sweet quotes Sufi poet Kabir who says, “God is the breath inside the breath.” Sweet then makes the following blasphemous, pagan comment: “All of creation is made alive with the holy breath of the Creator. Breathing Yahweh breath is breathing the holy breath of life. Yahweh. … Our breathing and heartbeat are in tune with the name. Breathe in ‘Yah’ and breathe out ‘weh’ … I guarantee you will relax.”

This heresy is the product of contemplative prayer, which Sweet is recommending in this passage. Sweet is the author and co-author of more than 30 books. He was twice voted “one of the 50 Most Influential Christians in America” by ChurchReport magazine. Rick Warren recommends Sweet’s book Soul Tsunami (his recommendation is printed on the cover). Warren and Sweet collaborated on an audio set entitled Tides of Change, and Sweet spoke at Saddleback Church in January 2008 for a small groups training conference. Sweet has spoken at Bill Hybels’ Willowcreek Community Church. Sweet’s book Jesus Manifesto (co-authored by Frank Viola) was recommended by Southern Baptist Ed Stetzer, who has spoken at Southwide Baptist Fellowship and Trinity Baptist College, Jacksonville, Florida.

*****

Who else is in this group?  Other emergent newagelicals are Brian McLaren, Tony Campolo, Rob Bell, Tony Jones, Eckhart Tolle, Oprah Winfrey, just for starters. Many got their start in theology of mysticism by reading and studying Jurgen Moltmann and Ken Wilbur.

I often check out my blogging friends to see what they have discovered in their latest research. Living Journey posted an article from More Books and Things…..so I will add to mix here and also post Carla’s article. Here is a teaser:

There is huge a parallel here for the church to learn regarding the times we live in now. There are those today who are telling you nice things. These are wolves disguised as sheep, who call themselves God’s people, but they won’t talk about judgment, hell, sin or repentance. Instead they love to ooze about in conversations about the journey, kingdom, peace and justice here and now, or the new theories of atonement, the power of questions, and their favourite heretics and false teachers who have endorsed their new books. The saddest part is that there are those who are listening to these false prophets and believing everything they say, because they are not studying God’s Word – let alone defending or contending.

Read Article HERE

I have often wondered how one gets to a mindset that entertains God as a female. Anyone who knows scripture and reads the Bible on a consistant basis knows that God is called the “Father”. No other possibility exists.

So where do the heresies come from?

The explosion of mysticism in our society is key and it is not confined to the general public. It is rampant in the church.

Take for instance Neal Donald Walsch. He claims to converse with God. The truth…he is deceived and deceiving others. His “god”, speaks of a new age gospel which is truly distorted from God’s word. There is no truth in him and his enlightened revelations. His experiences trump the truths found in the Bible, so he says.

As Walsch meditates, here is a product of what he has “received” taken from “Conversations with God.”

“If you think God looks only one way or sounds only one way or is only one way, you’re going to look right past Me night and day. You’ll spend your whole life looking for God and not finding Her.”

The problem with the statement is vast. To know God you have to study His word. He is the only way.

No one can find reconciliation with God and salvation from sin except through union with Jesus Christ.

Acts 4:12 “Salvation is found in no one else for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.”

John 14:6 “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”

There is no place in scripture that refers to God in the female sense. Heresies are often traced back through man’s secret revelations obtained by occult mystical spirit guides that are quickly emerging.

So on to the article for today from David Cloud.

THE EMERGING CHURCH’S FEMALE GOD (Friday Church News Notes, June 12, 2009, http://www.wayoflife.org

– Phyllis Tickle, an Episcopalian lay “Eucharistic minister and lector” and a Senior Fellow at Cathedral College at the liberal Washington National Cathedral, is an influential voice in the emerging church and the contemplative prayer movement. Tickle promotes non-verbal contemplative praying. She says, “The whole business of entering prayer WITHOUT THE VEHICLE OF WORDS is very important, for it allows the spirit to flow freely with the spirit of God, and does not have to articulate what is happening until one comes out from prayer” (“Praying in Color: A Conversation with friends and authors Sybil MacBeth and Phyllis Tickle,”

 Wordless meditation is not biblical prayer; it is a pagan practice that is a recipe for demonic deception. Those who practice it are invariably led into heresies. It should not be surprising, then, that Tickle believes in a female God and calls the Holy Spirit “he or she or it.” She teaches that by partaking of the Lord’s Supper the believer is feeding God and reinvigorating the Holy Spirit, whatever that means.

Speaking at Rob Bell’s Mars Hill Bible Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan, she said: “God is both male and female. God is both father and mother. … There is more than one thing under the name of God, and it is both male and female. … As we are about to do that [take the Lord’s supper], let us remember what we are doing. We not only celebrate that death and that promise of return, but we are feeding by eating God–which is what we are doing here–by eating the body and blood of our God, we are feeding the God within us. For as we take those elements the Spirit also feeds within us and is reinvigorated as he or she or it is by our faith” (Tickle, “A Treasure We Don’t Understand,” May 3, 2009).

Phyllis Tickle, Rob Bell, Brian McLaren, and that crowd are worshipping idols. The Shack, a popular book in emerging circles, also depicts God as a woman.

                        candlecross

 

How to Know When the Emerging Church

Shows Signs of Emerging in Your Church

Commentary by Roger Oakland

http://understandthetimes.org/

The world is changing. So is the Christian evangelical church. There was a time— not that long ago—when the Bible was considered to be the Word of God by the majority of evangelical Christians. Now that we are well into the third millennium and the post-modern, post-Christian era, the term evangelical can mean almost anything. What has happened? Why is this happening and what is the future for mainstream Christianity?

For the past several years, I have been speaking around the world on current trends that are impacting Christianity. After these presentations, I am approached by Christians who come from many different church backgrounds. Many are expressing their concerns about what is happening in their churches, troubled by the new direction they see their church going. While they may not always be able to discern what is wrong, they know something is wrong and that it needs to be addressed.

Further, many have told me they have attempted to express their concerns with their pastors or church elders. In almost every case, they were told they had a choice to make—get with the new program or get out of the church.

This move towards a reinvented Christianity (one designed to “reach people”) seems to be here for the long haul. It is not just a passing fad. I am often asked by concerned brothers and sisters in Christ to provide an explanation in order to help them understand what they have encountered. They want to know why these changes are underway and what to expect in the future. As well, they want to know what, if anything can be done, to stem this tide. It is for this reason I am writing this commentary—to provide biblical insight regarding the Emerging Church and where it is heading in the future.

The Gospel According to the Scriptures

Throughout church history, various trends have come and gone. While culture changes from place to place, biblical Christianity has always been based upon the central message of the Bible which is the gospel of Jesus Christ and the message never changes.

This gospel message is about who Jesus Christ is, and what He has done. A child can understand the gospel message. This message proclaims that life here on planet earth is finite and that life after death is eternal. The good news is that we can be saved from our sins if we will repent and simply ask for forgiveness and follow Him.

How we respond to the gospel message during the time we have on earth determines where we spend eternity—heaven or hell. Jesus, the Creator of the universe, provided a way and the only way we can spend eternity with Him. It is a matter of making a personal decision whether or not we will accept the plan He has provided.

God’s adversary does not want mankind to understand the simple message. His plan is to deceive the world. If he can blind people from the gospel or convince them that they believe the gospel when indeed they do not, his plan has been successful. Throughout the ages, countless billions have been duped, either rejecting the truth, or believing that they had believed the truth when instead they had been deceived.

The Gospel According to Postmoderism

Times change! However, the gospel must remain the same no matter what else changes. We are now living in the postmodern era. In a sincere attempt to reach the postmodern generation with the gospel, it seems many Christians have become postmodern in their thinking.

Perhaps the term postmodern is new to you. Let’s examine what it means.

First, the modern era was characterized by a time of rational thinking based on factual observation. Many claim the modern era ended in the mid 1900s.

The postmodern mindset moves beyond the rational and the factual to the experiential and the mystical. In other words, in the past it was possible to know right from wrong and black from white. In the postmodern era all things are relative to the beholder. What may be right for you may be wrong for someone else. There is no such thing as absolute truth. The only thing that is absolute is that there is no absolute.

We now live in a time in history that is characterized as postmodern. Professors at universities teach students there is no right or wrong. All things are relative. The gospel message to the postmodern mindset is far too dogmatic and arrogant. They say it is necessary to find a more moderate gospel that can be accepted by the masses.

Many church leaders are now looking for ways to reach the postmodern generation. They believe they can find the appropriate methods to do so without changing the message. However, in their attempt to reach this postmodern generation, they have become postmodern themselves and have changed the message. As the gospel is fixed upon the Scriptures, the gospel cannot change, unless of course it becomes another gospel. I believe this is what is happening in the Emerging Church.

He Didn’t Come

Many have noticed that since the turn of the millennium, their churches have changed positions on Bible prophecy and the Second Coming of Jesus. Many have given up on the return of Jesus. From the ‘60s on there was an excitement about the imminent return of Jesus. The Jesus People were excited about Bible prophecy and could see signs that Jesus would descend from the heavens for His Bride at any moment.

The year 2000 was of particular importance. When Jesus didn’t show up, it seems many were apparently disappointed. “Perhaps Jesus has delayed His coming,” some have said. Others are even taking the position that He may not be coming at all, at least not in the manner we have been taught. They are now convinced that we need to be busy about “building His Kingdom” here on earth by “whatever human effort is required.”

The Gospel of the Kingdom

One of the main indicators that something has changed can be seen in the way the future is perceived. Rather than urgently proclaiming the gospel according to the Scriptures and believing the time to do so is short, the emphasis has now shifted. No longer are “signs of the times” significant. The battle cry is very different. A major emphasis among evangelicals is the idea that the world can be radically improved through social programs.

This concept, while on the surface may sound very good, has some serious biblical implications. According to the Scriptures, there will be no kingdom of God until the King arrives. All the human effort man can muster up will fall short of bringing utopia. In fact, according to the Scriptures, fallen man will lead us further down the road to a society of despair and lawlessness just like it was in the days of Noah.

Thus, this purpose-driven view of establishing global utopia may be a plan, but it is “driven” by humanistic reasoning and not led by the Holy Spirit. While it is of course good to do good unto others, all the goodness that we can do will not be good enough. Pastors and church leaders who get involved in such man-driven programs can usually be identified by certain characteristics:

Sound biblical doctrine is dangerous and divisive, and the experiential (i.e.,mystical) is given a greater role than doctrine.

Bible prophecy is no longer taught and is considered a waste of time

Israel becomes less and less important and has no biblical significance

Eventually the promises for Israel are applied to the church and not Israel (Replacement Theology).

Bible study is replaced by studying someone’s book and his methods

Church health is evaluated on the quantity of people who attend.

The truth of God’s Word becomes less and less important

God’s Word, especially concepts like hell, sin and repentance, is eventually downplayed so the unbeliever is not offended.

Spiritual Formation and Transformation

Much of what I have described provides the formula for a dumbing-down of Christianity that paves the way for an apostasy that will only intensify in the future. This trend away from the authority of God’s Word to the reinvented form of Christianity has overcome all evangelical denominations like an avalanche. Few Bible teachers saw this avalanche coming. Now that it is underway, few realize it has even happened.

However, there is another big piece to the puzzle that must be identified in order to understand what is emerging in the Emerging Church. While biblical Christianity has been dumbed-down and the light of God’s Word diminished, another avalanche of deception is underway that is equally devastating.

This is best described by the Word of God giving way to experiences that God’s Word forbids. The best way to understand this process is to recall what happened during the Dark Ages when the Bible became the “forbidden book.” Until the Reformers translated the Bible into the language of the common person, the people were in darkness. When the light of God’s Word became available, the gospel according to the Scriptures was once again understood.

This trend, which is underway today, shows us that history is in the process of repeating itself. As the Word of God becomes less and less important, the rise of mystical experiences is alarming and these experiences are being presented to convince the unsuspecting that Christianity is about feeling, touching, smelling and seeing God. The postmodern mindset is the perfect environment for the fostering of what is called “spiritual formation.” This teaching suggests there are various ways and means to get closer to God. Proponents of spiritual formation erroneously teach that anyone can practice these mystical rituals and find God within. Having a relationship with Jesus Christ is not a prerequisite.

These teachings, while actually rooted in ancient wisdom (the occult), were presented to Christendom post-New Testament and not found in the Word of God. The spiritual formation movement is based upon experiences promoted by desert monks and Roman Catholic mystics – these mystics encouraged the use of rituals and practices, that if performed would bring the practitioner closer to God (or come into God’s presence). The premise was that if one went into the silence or sacred space, then the mind was emptied of distractions and the voice of God could be heard. In truth, these hypnotic, mantric style practices were leading these monks into altered states of consciousness. The methods they used are the same that Buddhists and the Hindus use as a means of encountering the spiritual realm

Such methods are dangerous, and are not sanctioned in the Bible – God gives no instruction for this. On the contrary, he warns severely against divination, which is practicing a ritual or method in order to obtain information from a spiritual source. While proponents of spiritual formation (like Richard Foster) say these methods show that the Holy Spirit is doing something new to refresh Christianity, I would suggest that what is happening is not new and is not the Holy Spirit.

The spiritual formation movement is being widely promoted at colleges and seminaries as the latest and the greatest way to become a spiritual leader in these days. These ideas are then being exported from seminaries to churches by graduates who have been primed to take Christianity to a new level of enlightenment.

As well, these contemplative practices are being promoted by emergent leaders such as Brian McLaren, Robert Webber, Dallas Willard and others. Publishers like NavPress, InterVarsity and Zondervan are flooding the market with books promoting contemplative practices based on Eastern mysticism. Pastors and church leaders read these books and then promote the ideas as if they were the scriptural answer to drawing close to God.

Signs the Emerging Church is Emerging

There are specific warning signs that are symptomatic that a church may be headed down the emergent/contemplative road. In some cases a pastor may not be aware that he is on this road nor understand where the road ends up.

Here are some of the warning signs:

Scripture is no longer the ultimate authority as the basis for the Christian faith.

The centrality of the gospel of Jesus Christ is being replaced by humanistic methods promoting church growth and a social gospel.

More and more emphasis is being placed on building the kingdom of God now and less and less on the warnings of Scripture about the imminent return of Jesus Christ and a coming judgment in the future.

The teaching that Jesus Christ will rule and reign in a literal millennial period is considered unbiblical and heretical.

The teaching that the church has taken the place of Israel and Israel has no prophetic significance is often embraced.

The teaching that the Book of Revelation does not refer to the future, but instead has been already fulfilled in the past

An experiential mystical form of Christianity begins to be promoted as a method to reach the postmodern generation.

Ideas are promoted teaching that Christianity needs to be reinvented in order to provide meaning for this generation.

The pastor may implement an idea called “ancient-future” or “vintage Christianity” claiming that in order to take the church forward, we need to go back in church history and find out what experiences were effective to get people to embrace Christianity.

While the authority of the Word of God is undermined, images and sensual experiences are promoted as the key to experiencing and knowing God.

These experiences include icons, candles, incense, liturgy, labyrinths, prayer stations, contemplative prayer, experiencing the sacraments, particularly the sacrament of the Eucharist.

There seems to be a strong emphasis on ecumenism indicating that a bridge is being established that leads in the direction of unity with the Roman Catholic Church.

Some evangelical Protestant leaders are saying that the Reformation went too far. They are reexamining the claims of the “church fathers” saying that communion is more than a symbol and that Jesus actually becomes present in the wafer at communion.

There will be a growing trend towards an ecumenical unity for the cause of world peace claiming the validity of other religions and that there are many ways to God.

Members of churches who question or resist the new changes that the pastor is implementing are reprimanded and usually asked to leave.

What does the Future Hold?

If the Emerging Church continues unfolding at the present pace, mainstream evangelical Christianity will be reinvented and the gospel of Jesus Christ according to the Scriptures will be considered too narrow and too restrictive. In other words, the narrow way to heaven that Jesus proclaimed will eventually be abandoned for a wider way that embraces pagan experiential practices. I call this reinvented, re-imagined form of Christianity that is unfolding—“Christian Babylonianism”.

This new form of Christianity will replace biblical faith with a faith that says man can establish the kingdom of God here on earth. The Word will continue to become secondary to a system of works driven by experiences.

An ecumenical pattern towards unity with Rome will become more apparent. Those who refuse to embrace this direction will be considered spiritual oddballs that need to be reprimanded. Those who stand up for biblical faith will be considered the obstructions to the one world spirituality that is promoted as the answer for peace.

The best way to be prepared for what is coming is to gain an understanding of what is happening now. While there are not many who seem to discern the trend underway, there are some. Without the Bible and the Holy Spirit as our guide, the darkness that is coming would be overwhelming. However, the light of God’s Word penetrates the darkness and there are those who are being delivered from deception and see what is taking place.

I am convinced we are seeing apostasy underway, exactly as the Scriptures have forewarned. This means that this current trend is not likely to disappear. We must continue to proclaim the truth in the midst of deception with love. As Paul instructed Timothy:

And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient, In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth; And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will (2 Timothy 2: 24-26).

There are still pastors and churches who are dedicated to proclaiming the truth. Find out where they are and support them. If you are in a location where this does not seem to be possible, seek out materials that are available from solid Bible-based Christian ministries and hold Bible studies in your own home.

And keep looking up! Jesus is coming soon.

 

Discovering the New Age Movement / New World Order, Part Three

Submitted by Craig “Lee” Dorsheimer

 

This is the third installment of this introductory series.  My intention is to provide a brief overview, not an all encompassing article.  The NAM/NWO is too large to contain in one article.  You may view the first part here and the second part here if you’ve not read them previously.

 

False Ecumenism / Religious Plurality

In its best usage, ‘ecumenism’ is a movement of unity among Biblical Christian denominations.[1]  I would call this true ecumenism.  However, a push to unite all churches who call themselves ‘Christian’ including the overtly new age Unity Church[2] among others, I would call false ecumenism.  Further, the attempt to unite Biblical Christianity to any other non-Christian faith I would term false ecumenism.  Unfortunately, the practice of much of the attempted unity today is a false kind and the term ‘ecumenism’ is used for this movement. 

 

The term ‘pluralism’ according to dictionary.com is, “a social organization in which diversity of racial or religious or ethnic or cultural groups is tolerated.”[3]  So, here I deal strictly with the religious aspect of pluralism in religious pluralism.  While it is certainly alright to tolerate other religious views, (although evangelism is our goal) we are not to attempt to unify at the expense of the purity of Biblical Christianity.

 

Recall that one of the goals of the New Age movement is a syncretism of all religions.  Since Biblical Christianity is problematic to New Agers with its insistence on one way to salvation – through Jesus Christ – the only way to merge with this movement is to modify the message.  In the Alice A. Bailey esoteric/occultic book From Bethlehem to Calvary she – actually Tibetan Master DK (Djwhal Khul) who channeled through her[4] – states:

 

Christianity will not be superseded.  It will be transcended, its work of preparation being triumphantly accomplished, and Christ will again give us the next revelation of divinity

 

…Can there not be revelations of God utterly unprecedented, and for which we have no words or adequate means of expression?  The ancient mysteries, so shortly to be restored, must be re-interpreted in the light of Christianity, and readapted to meet modern need[5] [Emphasis Mine]

 

Compare this to some statements by Mike Bickle[6] [currently of the International House of Prayer[7] (IHOP)] formerly of Kansas City Fellowship[6, 8] (KCF); Bob Jones, formerly one of the “Kansas City Prophets”[6] of KCF; and, Rick Joyner of MorningStar Ministries[9]:

 

“The Lord said simply, ‘I will change the understanding and expression of Christianity in the earth in one generation.’” [10] (Mike Bickle; Growing in the Prophetic) [Emphasis mine]

 

“They themselves will be that generation that’s raised up to death itself underneath their feet…a Church that has reached the full maturity of the god-man!…This generation of young people that are coming are going to see the beginning of the worldwide new order…It is going to change the expression of Christianity in a generation.”[11, 12, 13] (Bob Jones; Kansas City Fellowship Interview tape with Mike Bickle, 1988 as quoted by Jewel van der Merwe {Grewe}) [Emphasis mine]

 

“What is about to come upon the earth is not just a revival or another awakening; it is a veritable revolution.  This vision was given in order to begin awakening those who are destined to radically change the course and even the very definition of Christianity.”[14] (Rick Joyner The Harvest) [Emphasis mine]

 

And, during Todd Bentley’s “commissioning” service on June 23, 2008, Bill Johnson[15] said:

 

…We shape the course of history by partnering with you giving honor where it’s due.  You welcome the glory as well as anybody I’ve ever seen in my life – I long to learn from you in that and I bless you.  And, I pray with the rest of these that the measure of glory would increase, that Moses would no longer be the high water mark with the glory shown from his face but instead the revelation of the goodness of God would change the face of the church.  And that he would use your voice, he would use your grace, your anointing, to alter the face of the Church before the world[16] [Emphasis mine]

 

Has ‘the expression of Christianity’ and ‘the face of the church’ changed? Will it in the future?

 

            8Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. [Hebrews 13:8 NIV]

 

            27But you remain the same and your years will never end [Psalms 102:27 NIV]

 

19God is not a man that He should lie, nor a son of man that He should change his mind [Numbers 23:19 NIV]           

 

“On October 13, 2007, …138 Muslim scholars and clerics sent an open letter ‘to leaders of Christian churches, everywhere.’”[17]  So began Loving God and Neighbor Together: A Christian Response to A Common Word Between Us and You – a document signed by ‘Christian leaders’ in answer to this open letter.[18]  On the home page of A Common Word, “…Thus despite their differences, Islam and Christianity not only share the same Divine Origin and same Abrahamic heritage, but the same two greatest commandments.”[19]

 

In an apparent effort not to offend, the ‘Christian leaders’ brought reproach upon Jehovah God.  This response sent back to Muslim scholars and clerics references “the Prophet Muhammad” [yes that’s a capital ‘P’ Prophet] and refers to God as “the All-Merciful One.”  I don’t recall this as one of the names listed for Jehovah God in my Bible.  In addition, Jesus Christ, while mentioned a few times, is never referred to as the Son of God or Savior – again in an effort not to offend.

 

32Whoever acknowledges me before men, I will also acknowledge him before my Father in heaven.  But whoever disowns me before men, I will disown him before my Father in heaven. [Matthew 10:32-33 NIV]

 

13…Do not invoke the names of other gods; do not let them be heard on your lips. [Exodus 23:13 NIV]

 

Here is a quote from “A Christian Response:”

 

When Freedom to worship God according to one’s conscience is curtailed, God is dishonored, the neighbor is oppressed, and neither God nor neighbor is loved [17] [Emphasis mine]

 

While Jehovah God – the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob – gives us all free will to choose to love Him or not, He IS dishonored when we choose not to love Him.  And, to truly love our neighbor is to evangelize in hopes of their salvation.

 

4For the LORD your God is a consuming fire, a jealous God. [Deuteronomy 4:23 NIV]

 

One more quote from the “Christian Response:”

 

Abandoning all “hatred and strife,” we must engage in interfaith dialogue as those who seek each other’s good, for the one God unceasingly seeks our good.  Indeed, together with you we believe that we need to move beyond “a polite ecumenical dialogue between selected religious leaders” and work diligently together to reshape relations between our communities and our nations so that they genuinely reflect our common love for God and for one another. [17] [Emphasis mine]

 

Following is a partial list of signatories beginning with the two individuals who were formerly speaking out against the New Age Movement referenced at the close of part two of this series:  Rich Nathan, Senior Pastor, Vineyard Church of Columbus; Richard Mouw, President, Fuller Theological Seminary; Rick Warren, Founder and Senior Pastor, Saddleback Church, Lake Forest, CA; Bill Hybels, Founder and Senior Pastor, Willow Creek Community Church; Lynn Green, International Chairman, YWAMDavid Yonggi Cho, Founder and Senior Pastor, Yoido Full Gospel Church, Seoul, Korea; Brian McLaren, [Emerging Church movement] Author, Speaker, Activist; Berten A. Waggoner, National Director, Association of Vineyard Churches; Robert Schuller, Founder, Crystal Cathedral and Hour of Power; Kim B. Gustafson, President, Common Ground; Steve Moore, President and CEO, The Mission Exchange (formerly EFMA); John M. Buchanan, Editor/Publisher, The Christian Century; Leith Anderson; President, National Association of Evangelicals; James A. Kowalski, Dean, Cathedral of Saint John the Divine, NY; David Neff, Editor in Chief and Vice President, Christianity Today Media Group.[17]  There are about 250 in total.

 

Here’s more on Fuller Theological Seminary in which they would unabashedly promote religious pluralism as well as New Age ideals and terminology. From a newsletter from 2003 of an event co-sponsored by Calvin College and Fuller Theological Seminary:

 

Drawing on the resources of scholars from various parts of the world who represent diverse historical and religious experiences of religio-cultural plurality, the consultation will reflect together on its meaning for faithful Christian witness.[17] [Emphasis mine]

 

In the events schedule of this weekend-long conference lasting Friday through Sunday were topics on Hinduism, Islam, “Primal/traditional religions,” and others.[20]  In the newsletter’s ‘Statement of Purpose:’

 

Since 1945 the forces of globalization have accelerated with the result that people everywhere have become conscious of the ‘world as a whole’ being bound more tightly together. At the same time they experience the “local” more intensely. This global-local dialectic is a key characteristic of globalization.

 

…This project focuses on religious plurality as an important element in this larger process of globalization and pluralization[20]  [Emphasis mine]

 

The term “global-local dialectic” is interchangeable with ‘think globally, act locally’ – very common New Age terms.  What were the “forces of globalization” which began in 1945?  Most likely this is referencing the birth of the United Nations in 1945 which superseded the League of Nations.  The UN is “an international organization formed after World War II in 1945 to promote international peace, security and cooperation under the terms of the Charter of the United Nations.”[21]  On a website detailing the “Evolution of The Great Invocation[22] – a prayer to the Antichrist – is  found the following:

 

The United Nations Conference on International Organization convened on April 25, 1945 in San Francisco, for five days right at the time of the Wesak. (That year the Taurus full moon fell on April 27.)[23] [Emphasis mine]

 

The Wesak Full Moon Ritual[24] is a celebration of the “Birth and Enlightenment of Buddha.”[25]  It’s interesting that this initial meeting of the UN was held right smack in the middle of an important occultic/esoteric holiday.

 

The Charter of the United Nations was signed on June 26 (exactly one month after the Gemini full moon of 1945, on May 26) and enacted on October 24, 1945, with the 51 signatures representing all sections of the planet.[23] [Emphasis mine]

 

The Pope’s ties to the United Nations

 

The papacy has had close ties to the UN since its inception.[26]  Pope Benedict XVI “supports robust global governance, in a fashion that has long bewildered neoconservative critics of the United Nations in the United States and elsewhere.”[26] [Emphasis mine]   Prior to the Pope’s visit of April 18 of this year, the President of the UN General Assembly, Serjan Kerim anticipated that the visit would be “special” since “more than a billion Catholics in the world share many of the concerns and aspirations of the UN.”[27]

 

The pope and the UN secretary-general “are two eminent moral authorities in the world,” Archbishop Migliore [Celestino Migliore, the Vatican’s UN nuncio or ‘ambassador’] said noting that the UN secretary-general [currently Ban Ki-moon of South Korea] “is oftentimes referred to as the ‘secular pope.’”

 

…The Holy See is an international actor of rank and has an important role to play in addressing a number of major international challenges,” he said.  One of those challenges, he added, is “religious interfaith dialogue, where the pope has taken important initiatives lately.

 

…Being at the forefront of the U.N. initiative for an alliance of civilizations,” he said, Spain was “particularly pleased with the pope’s call to interreligious and intercultural dialogue based on the dignity of the human being, which can only be of benefit to the United Nations and international community as a whole.[28] [All emphasis mine]

 

Is it a coincidence that the Pope’s visit to the US and the UN in New York, which commenced on the 15th of April, ended on the 20th[29] which was a full moon[30] tying into what’s known as “the Festival of the Christ?”[25] [Again, “the Christ” is actually the Antichrist.]  There are three important festivals to theosophists/esotericists.  The first is the “Festival of the Christ” in April, the second is Wesak in May and the third is the “Festival of Humanity” which is in June.[25]  All coincide with the full moon.  

 

The Papacy in the New Age

 

At the 23rd World Youth Day in Sydney, Australia on July 20, 2008 [the trip was actually 6 days total from July 15th through July 20th – note: there was a full moon on July 18] Pope Benedict XVI suggested New Age unity:[31] 

 

“In today’s Gospel, [cf. Luke 4:21], Jesus proclaims that a new age has begun, in which the Holy Spirit will be poured out upon all humanity.”[31][Emphasis mine]

 

In context the Luke verse is referring to the fulfillment of Isaiah 61:1-2 – a Messianic prophetic passage.  While there is no mention of the Holy Spirit being poured out in either the Luke or Isaiah verses, I concede that the beginning of Jesus’ earthly ministry would ultimately culminate in his death on the cross and outpouring of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost in Acts 2.  However, this quote above sounds suspiciously similar to Latter Rain[32, 33] teaching especially when taken together with the following:

 

At the Mass, the pope prayed that the World Youth Day experience would be a new Pentecost for all the participants, marking a new outpouring of the gifts of the Holy Spirit.[34] [Emphasis mine]

 

Additionally, Pope Benedict in his push for ecumenism warned we should not let doctrine divide the Church – another aspect of Latter Rain.[35]

 

“…We must guard against any temptation to view doctrine as divisive and hence an impediment to the seemingly more pressing and immediate task of improving the world in which we live.”[35] [Emphasis mine]

 

Note that the pope uses the term ‘new age’ three times in the following short passage.  Certainly, Pope Benedict must be aware of the negative implications of the term.

 

“…Empowered by the Spirit, and drawing upon faith’s rich vision, a new generation of Christians is being called to help build a world in which God’s gift of life is welcomed, respected and cherished — not rejected, feared as a threat and destroyed,” the Bishop of Rome affirmed. “A new age in which love is not greedy or self-seeking, but pure, faithful and genuinely free, open to others, respectful of their dignity, seeking their good, radiating joy and beauty. A new age in which hope liberates us from the shallowness, apathy and self-absorption which deaden our souls and poison our relationships.” “Dear young friends,” he urged, “the Lord is asking you to be prophets of this new age, messengers of his love, drawing people to the Father and building a future of hope for all humanity.” The world and the Church need this renewal, Benedict XVI affirmed. “The Church especially needs the gifts of young people, all young people,” he said. “She needs to grow in the power of the Spirit who even now gives joy to your youth and inspires you to serve the Lord with gladness…”[36]

 

And last, but not least, is the following from an article proposing on a beauty pageant for nuns.  The contestants must be between the ages of 18 and 40, “and can be either full members of an order or novices.”[37]   Does this mean one is no longer beautiful after age 40?  Is this the line of demarcation?  At least there will be no swimsuit competition and the nuns would not be wearing anything revealing according to the article.  The photos will be placed on a blog and viewers can vote on their favorites.

 

Father [Antonio] Rungi said that he expected many who applied to be young, attractive – and non-Italian.  He said: “Do you really think nuns are all wizened, funereal old ladies?  Today, it’s not like that any more, thanks to an injection of youth and vitality brought to our country by foreign girls.”  He said there were nuns from Africa and Latin America who were “really very, very pretty.  The Brazilian girls above all.”

 

…He admitted that not all Catholics were in favor of the idea.  “I have had some e-mails from Christians who perhaps have not grasped the evangelizing spirit of the initiative, or the potential of the internet, which is a marvelous tool for spreading the Christian message.  Unfortunately, some people still have a closed mentality.”[37][Emphasis mine]

 

Does this seem like effective evangelism or does this seem wrong to you dear reader?  I agree the internet is “a marvelous tool for spreading the Christian message” but not in the way he’s thinking.          

 

 

[1] “ecumenism.” WordNet© 3.0. Princeton University.  26 Aug. 2008. <Dictionary.com http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/ecumenism>

 

[2] <http://www.unity.org/index.php?submenu=What_we_believe&src=gendocs&ref=WeBelieve&category=About%20Us>

 

[3] “pluralism.” WordNet© 3.0. Princeton University.  26 Aug. 2008. <Dictionary.com http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/pluralism>

 

[4] <http://www.lucistrust.org/en/publications_store/alice_bailey_books/about_alice_bailey>

 

[5] Bailey, Alice A.  “Introduction to Initiation.” From Bethlehem to Calvary. Lucis Trust; copyright 1937 by Alice A. Bailey, renewed 1957 by Foster Bailey; 4th paperback edition, 1989; Fort Orange Press, Inc., Albany, New York; p 20-21

 

[6] <http://www.ihop.org/>

 

[7] <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mike_Bickle>

 

[8] <http://www.pfo.org/growingpains.htm>

 

[9] <http://www.morningstarministries.org/>

 

[10] Bickle, Mike. Growing in the Prophetic. Creation House. Lake Mary, FL; 1996 p 30

 

[11] (van der Merwe) Grewe, Jewel. “False Prophets.” Discernment Newsletter. May 1990 Volume 1, No.1 <http://www.discernment-ministries.org/1990_FirstEdition.pdf  page 35 (Kansas City Fellowship Interview Bob Jones with Mike Bickle 1988)

 

[12] (van der Merwe) Grewe, Jewel. “A New Breed.” Discernment Newsletter. June 1990 <http://www.discernment-ministries.org/NL_June1990.pdf  page 45 (Kansas City Fellowship Interview Bob Jones with Mike Bickle 1988)

 

[13] (van der Merwe) Grewe, Jewel. “The Anointed Seed.” Discernment Newsletter. September 1990 <http://www.discernment-ministries.org/NL_Sept1990.pdf>  page 5 (Kansas City Fellowship Interview Bob Jones with Mike Bickle 1988)

 

[14] Joyner, Rick. The Harvest  <http://www.amazon.com/gp/reader/0883685035/ref=sib_dp_ptu#reader-link> 1993. MorningSter Publications. Charlotte, NC; back cover

 

[15] <http://www.ibethel.org/>

 

[16] Johnson, Bill. “Todd Bentley ‘Commissioning’ of June 23, 2008.” <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-A05WQYi7aQ> 1:30 – 2:10

 

[17] <http://www.acommonword.com/index.php?lang=en&page=option1>

 

[18] <http://www.acommonword.com/lib/downloads/fullpageadbold18..pdf>

 

[19] <http://www.acommonword.com/>

 

[20] “Christianity and Religious Plurality in Historical and Global Perspective.” April 25-27, 2003 <http://www.fullerseminary.net/news/html/religiousplurality.asp>

 

[21] American Society of International Law <http://www.asil.org/resource/un1.htm>

 

[22] <http://www.lucistrust.org/invocation/>

 

[23] <http://www.souledout.org/gi/gievolution.html>

 

[24] <http://www.souledout.org/wesak/wesaklegend2.html>

 

[25] <http://www.wesak.us/articles.php>

 

[26] Allen, Jr., John L., “The Vatican’s Relative Truth.” The New York Times. <http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/19/opinion/19allen.html> 12/19/07

 

[27] “UN gets ready for Pope Benedict’s visit.” <http://www.unmultimedia.org/radio/english/detail/9316.html> 04/11/08

 

[28] Stagnaro, Angelo. “Diplomats welcome Pope Benedict’s visit to United Nations.” Catholic News Service. <http://www.catholicnews.com/data/stories/cns/0802122.htm> 08/20/08

 

[29]  Wooden, Cindy. “Pope says trip to U.S. was opportunity to give, receive hope, faith.” <http://www.uspapalvisit.org/stories/cns_0802384.htm> 04/30/08

 

[30] <http://www.farmersalmanac.com/2007-2008-full-moons>

 

[31] Flynn, Father John, LC. “The New Age of the Holy Spirit.” Zenit. <http://www.zenit.org/article-23347?l=english> 07/27/08

 

[32] <http://www.theopedia.com/Latter_Rain_Movement>

 

[33] <http://www.letusreason.org/Latrain7.htm>

 

[34] Wooden, Cindy. “Pope tells young people power of the Holy Spirit can transform world.” Catholic News Services. <http://www.catholicnews.com/data/stories/cns/0803760.htm> 07/20/08

 

[35] Wigen, Nancy. “Ecumenism ultimately points toward a common Eucharist, Pope tells Christians.” Catholic News Agency. <http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/new.php?n=13290> 07/18/08

 

[36] “Pope Prays Closing Mass Will Be New Pentecost..” World Youth Day – Cross Media. <http://wydcrossmedia.org/moduli/popupnews.php?i=602> 07/19/08

 

[37] Owen, Richard, “Priest Antonio Rungi wants beauty contest – for nuns.” The Times. <http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/europe/article4600534.ece> 08/25/08

the-moses-code.jpg 

The Moses Code Movie Blasphemy and The Big Shift 

Update: Since this article was published, the original movie trailer for the Moses Code was removed without explanation from both YouTube and the MosesCode.com website. They have replaced the original with a different one that does not contain the blasphemous, “I AM” statements referred to in this column. I look forward to their explanation as to why they felt they needed to remove it.  

This article is from http://www.christianworldviewnetwork.com/article.php/3159/Ingrid_Schlueter

A movie will be unveiled on April 5 that should get a prize for honesty in blasphemy. Unlike the emerging church celebrity authors and speakers who shuck and jive when asked direct questions about God, salvation, and truth, The Moses Code is produced by those who will tell you right out what they believe. What they do believe is breathtaking in its Satanic audacity. In the original movie trailer, now removed mysteriously from YouTube and the MosesCode.com site, promoters of The Moses Code cheerfully announce that I AM is something all of us can say. Towards the end of the original clip, one young man looks up and into the camera and tells viewers, I am the way, the truth, and the ‘light’.” The website says the following:

For the first time a major spiritual film release is being combined with a worldwide prayer vigil focused on shifting the planetary consciousness.

Join millions of people from every corner of the globe in learning the most powerful manifestation tool in the history of the world. Then on one momentous day we’ll use the code to promote peace and compassion for all beings through over 1000 gatherings worldwide.

This is the chance for humanity to use the Law of Attraction to create peace on the deepest level.

Coming on the heels of The Secret, the New Spirituality teachers featured in The Moses Code are in hopes that by teaching everyone about the power of declaring themselves God, they can help along the “Shift” in planetary consciousness that everyone is talking about today.

The Shift is the name of another movie under production featuring New Spirituality gurus like Deepak Chopra and Marianne Williamson, alongside leftist environmentalists like Al Gore and religious figures such as Archbishop Desmond TuTu. Their message is the same, as though it was taken from the same script.

“A massive worldwide phenomenon is in progress, offering seeds of great hope for the future…We are in the middle of the biggest social transformation in history, THE SHIFT.”

Working on the Evangelical end of things, emergent author Brian McLaren is also promoting a Big Shift, calling his nationwide tour, The Deep Shift Conference. A heretic who does not believe in hell and who rejects the penal substitutionary atonement of Jesus Christ, McLaren is taking his Shift Experience to Willow Creek Community Church in April where he will be teaching youth workers and pastors from evangelical churches across the country about how they need to change their ministries to accommodate the Big Shift in thinking.

Emergent authors Phyllis Tickle and Tony Jones are also on board promoting a big spiritual shift. They prefer to call it the “Great Emergence”. Speaking at the Zondervan sponsored National Pastor’s Convention this week, Phyllis and Tony have titled their speech, not surprisingly, “The Great Emergence.” 

What is emerging is another Jesus and another gospel. The Big Shift that all of the New Spirituality gurus are buzzing about marks the advent of the worldwide apostasy that is now upon us. Just as the Lord assigns roles to fulfill in His Church, the enemy assigns roles for his purposes. Over the two decades of researching the New Spirituality teachers and the inroads they have made into evangelical churches, it is evident to me that deception comes in many forms today on many different levels. Whether it is the spiritual bubble gum from Joel Osteen that serves to deceive the shallow masses or whether it’s the quasi-intellectual postmodern poison served up to college students by men like McLaren, Rob Bell, Tony Jones, Doug Pagitt, Dan Kimball and so many others, it’s all deception working towards the same end.

It is one thing to identify the counterfeit Christ of Marianne Williamson or the latest New Age author on the Oprah Winfrey Show (Eckhart Tolle is her latest protégé ), but what happens when authors published by the big “Christian” publishers are saying the same things? What happens when our celebrity emerging church leaders are using the same language, calling for the same things, and promoting the same false doctrines that redefine Christ and the Scriptures as the New Spirituality authors?

Compare these two quotes. One is from a popular emerging author and speaker who spoke at a conference with men like Andy Stanley and Rick Warren and regularly rubs shoulders with those in the new Evangelicalism. The other quote is from one of the world’s leading New Spirituality heretics. Can you tell which is which?

Quote 1

“The first of these five untheorized observations is that New Light embodiment means to be “in connection” and ‘in-formation’ with other Christians. Deeper feeling and higher relating go together. The church is fundamentally one being, one person, a comm-union whose cells are connected to one another within the information network called the Christ consciousness. New Lights offer up themselves as the cosmions of a mind-of-Christ consciousness. As a cosmion incarnating the cells of a new body, New Lights will function as transitional vessels through which transforming energy can renew the divine image in the world, moving postmoderns from one state of embodiment to another.”

Quote 2

‘Third Jesus’ can be seen only when we move into a new human awareness that will carry us beyond tribe, prejudice and even beyond our religious systems. As a Christian, I welcome his insights into my Jesus and his provocative call to me to enter the ‘Christ Consciousness’ and thus to become more deeply and completely human.”.

The first quote is from emerging author Leonard Sweet who spoke at the Catalyst Conference in Atlanta, attended by thousands of evangelical leaders from across the nation. It’s from his book, Quantum Spirituality, in which he thanks New Agers Willis Harmon, Matthew Fox and Ken Wilbur, to name a few, for their influence on him.

The second quote is from John Shelby Spong, in a book endorsement for Deepak Chopra’s brand new book, The Third Jesus, which is a brazen introduction of the cosmic Christ of the Big Shift everyone is talking about.

Both authors are talking about the same Christ-consciousness. They are describing the same thing—one from inside of evangelicalism, one from outside. Both popular author Rob Bell and occultist/New Spirituality teacher, Barbara Marx Hubbard, speak of being co-creators with God. Bell tells us in his latest Nooma video, “Open”, that creation is unfinished and that God needs us to be fellow creators with Him to finish the job

.…we have to understand that Jesus took very seriously the creation poem Genesis, that the Bible begins with. And in this creation poem God creates, but God creates things that are capable of creating more, and so God creates trees but then gives trees the ability to create more. God creates animals and plants and fish but then empowers them to create more. And then God creates people, and gives them the ability to create more. So everything in creation is essentially unfinished, God leaves the world unfinished, and invites people to take part in the ongoing creation of the world…

Hubbard’s occult “Christ” in her channeled book, The Revelation, instructs us about our participation as co-creators of the world.

“Those of you who hear these words are to carry on the commandment given to John two thousand years ago. You are not only to prophesy the end, the tribulations, and the New Jerusalem, you are to act it out. You are to discover the blueprint and become co-creators with God. You are to see the first fruits of the NEW BEGINNING.”

Yes, there is a Big Shift underway. The two spheres that were once irreconcilably opposed to one another, (Evangelicalism and New Spirituality) are coming together. The overlap has begun. But millions of evangelical Christians in the pews are distracted. They haven’t researched these issues. They don’t know their Bibles. They accept without question whatever Zondervan or Thomas Nelson put out. They watch the DVD’s their church screens like Rob Bell’s Nooma videos and they don’t catch the language. It is slippery. It is subtle, but the enemy is getting bolder with each passing day. There is a lack of sobriety and vigilance, and now the enemy is walking boldly in the front doors of our churches and Christian colleges.

At bottom, the New Spirituality blasphemers like the producers of  The Moses Code are more honest than the emergents when they state openly that they believe they are the way, the truth and the life. At its core, their message is the same as many within the emerging “conversation”. The Bible is not a product of “Divine fiat”, Rob Bell says, “it’s a human product.” (Christianity Today, 11/1/04) The end result? We become God in our own minds. We can make things up as we go. Where does it all end? Rob Bell ends up promoting doctrines of demons—that we are co-creators with God, or rejecting the existence of hell, or the atonement, like Brian McLaren. That’s where it all ends. When you abandon a high view of Holy Scripture, your rebellion will take you places you never dreamed you would go. At some point, God blinds those who willingly believe a lie. With the full counsel of God in our hands, we are without excuse if we choose to participate in the Big Shift. The Shift is here, but those who serve the risen, ascended and glorified Lord Jesus Christ will stay separate. They will reject the anti-Christ doctrine of “oneness” of the New Spirituality and they will stay faithful at all costs.

“We are discovering Christianity as an Eastern religion as a way of life.”

The Emerging Church -The Latest Heresy By Stephen Holland

steveholland.jpg

Preached on: Sunday, February 10, 2008

Westhoughton Evangelical Church

King Street, Westhoughton

Lancashire, UK BL5 3AX

Online Sermons: http://www.sermonaudio.com/revholland

Now a few year ago I heard a talk given on the Emerging Church and after it went away

and thought, “I haven’t a clue what he was on about.” So I hope after this session that

you will not go away with the same opinion.

If you have not come to hear of it, the chances are you soon will. A search on the internet

search engine Google will bring up no less than 616,000 references to what has come to

be known as Emergent or Emerging Church.

A check to your local Christian bookstore and see you find such titles as A New Kind of

Christian or Vintage Christianity for New Generations or The Forgotten Ways or The

Lost Methods of Jesus or Adventures in Missing the Point, Liquid Church, A Generous

Orthodoxy: More ready than you realize, Finding Faith Post Christendom, Changing

Worlds, Changing Church, Emerging Church, Emerging Churches, emerging-

church.intro. Those were just found on one shelf in one Christian so called bookstore.

There could be added-and will be many more titles added-to the list in the coming

days. Some authors with in the Emerging Church are Brian McLaren, Ralph Bell, Dan

Kimball, Doug Paget, Leonard Sweet, Spencer Burke, Yurgin McMannis, Tommy Collolen, Jason Clock, [?], Richard Foster and Tony Jones. And we could add also to that

people like Tony Campolo and Steve Chalk.

A tour is apparently being planned in 11 states of the USA to run from February to May

of this year. That tour is called “Everything Must Change Tour.” The title, of course,

that gives almost the game away. We are told by the organizer, Brian McLaren that this

is a tour for people short on hope. This tour is named after McLaren’s latest book Everything Must Change. The subtitle of this book reads: Jesus, Global Crisis and a Revolution

of Hope. This tour is for people of all thoughts, but seems especially aimed at those who

are fed up and disillusioned with-quote-traditional church. It is for people looking for

new ways of doing church. That is the in word today, doing church.

So what, may you ask, what’s all the fuss about?

Well, the very term “Emerging Church” suggests itself that they are emerging from

something. The very titles of the books just quoted suggest the same thing. Terms like

“lost message” or “new kind of Christian” or “forgotten ways” or “finding faith” or

“missing the point” or “post-Christendom” or “changing worlds, changing church.” All

this suggests some form of revolution is taking place or is about to take place and within

branches of the professed Christian Church.

So what, again, you may be asking. After all, the Church has changed, hasn’t it, from

one generation to next and from one century to another. And, of course, our world is

every changing.

There is nothing wrong, of course, with change. None of us, I take it, came here today by

horseback like many of our forefathers would have done or are dressed like our Puritan

brethren of the 17century. We live in a very advanced age where change is happening

at an incredible pace.

Is the Church in danger of being left behind or even in danger of extinction all together

unless she adapts? These people would tell us, “Yes.”

Men can doubt that the Church of Jesus Christ is at a low point as far as man can see. We

are told that excluding deaths and transfers 1500 people are thought to be deserting

churches in Britain every week. The promised hopes of the decade of evangelism have

not materialized. In the early 1990s it was hoped that about 20,000 new churches would

be opened by the close of the century. Rather, a survey has revealed that only 1867 new

churches were opened in England while 2557 closed. We are told that the fall in church

attendance was expected to decline in Scotland from 17.1% in 1980 to 10.3% by 2005. In

Wales from 14.1% to just 6.4% while in England from 10.1% to 6.7%.

The attendance of young people in churches seems to be even more depressing. In 1979

1,000,416 under 15s attended church. In 1989 it was 1,177,000 and by 1998 it was down

to just 717,100. One has estimated that 94% of young people are not in church on a Sunday. [?] of course, in spite of all its boasts and claims has failed to stem the decline. The

situation seems bleak and desperate. The Church is being increasingly told that she is out

of date, out of touch and irrelevant to our post-modern generation.

What is the answer to our plight? Is this new phenomena, the Emerging Church, the savior of the supposed dying Church? Have we found the answer in this newest of movements? One author things to think so. Michael Moynagh in his book emerging-

church.intro he says this of his own book, “It argues that church of a different timbre is

key to Christianity’s revival, perhaps survival in the western world.” He does, though, go

on to say, “But Emerging Church is not a magic solution. Emerging Church is not a quick

pick me up for a sick body. It is a collection of new vessels for new…for all the ingredients that are essential to Church and up dimension in worship and in dimension in community, announced dimension in mission and an of dimension as individual churches see

themselves as part of the body of Christ.” End quote.

Well, how would we define the Emerging or Emergent Church? How would you define

the Church? Well, let me give you a quote from one of the leading spokesmen, Brian

McLaren, and see if you can figure it out for yourself.

On the front cover of his popular book A Generous Orthodoxy he says this. “Why I am

missional and evangelical and post Protestant and liberal conservative and mystical poetic and biblical and charismatic contemplative and fundamentalist, Calvinist and Anabaptist, Anglican and Methodist and Catholic and Green and incarnational and [?]…”

You are not surprised, “Yet hopeful and emergent and unfinished Christian.”

Well, you were beginning to thinking that here is a man who really isn’t quite too sure

what he is all about. He seems to be one who certainly hasn’t arrived at certainty. And

this really sums up the whole Emerging Church. It doesn’t quite know what it is itself or

where it is going.

Michael Moynagh says, again-quote-“Emerging Church is a mindset. We will come

to you, rather than a model. It is a direction rather than a destination. It rests on principles rather than a plan. It rises out of a culture rather than being imposed on a culture. It

is a mood scarcely yet a movement.”

The same author goes on to say-quote-“Emerging Church is more than a pragmatic

response to declining numbers. It is a theological vision, a wide eyed vision that escapes

a blinked past, challenges the status quo and calls for new forms of Christianity in which

individuals can encounter Christ authentically. Might these communities renew inherited

congregations and become the crucible of the Church in the Postmodern world?” End of

quote.

Though the Emerging Church has no leaders, official leaders or base, one widely recognized as a leading spokesman and author is Brian McLaren. He says, Brian McLaren

says, “Right now Emerging Church is a conversation, not a movement. We don’t have a

program. We don’t have a model. I think we must begin as a conversation then grow as a

friendship and see if a movement comes of it.”

Moynagh says, “The lack of a single term reflects how cutting edge it all is. Not even the

language has been defined.”

Leonard Sweet, one such Emergent pioneer, has used the acronym EPIC to describe what

Emergent is all about. E stands for experimental. You see, this is because the Postmodern man, we are told, wants to experience the spiritual. The P stands for participants because Postmodern man wants to enter into things and not just be an observer. So, you

see, we may as well do away with the sermon and have a conversation instead. The I relates to image because our Postmodern man, supposedly, in this generation is sight oriented so we might use things like images-artwork, film and video-in our presentation

and in our worship. C is for communal because Postmodern man wants essential community and belonging.

Well, these things are not necessarily wrong, of course, in and of themselves, but there is

more to it than seems to be. It is not just all innocence.

Rob Dell, who is another one of the leaders in this movement puts us in the picture when

he says, “This is not just the same old message with new methods. We are discovering

Christianity as an Eastern religion as a way of life.”

Well, having no official position as yet has caused one critic to comment, “The Emerging

Church is a rather slippery name for a rather slippery movement. By slippery I mean that

the movement is so new-originating in the late 1990s-so fragmented, so varied that

nailing it down is like nailing the proverbial Jello to the wall. There are no official leaders

or headquarters. Some have said that there are thousands of expressions yet only a few

churches have sold out to the concept. And even those claiming the name can’t agree on

what is going on. Although maybe they are not yet a force to be reckoned with, this

movement will no doubt grow, have its adherents, take its casualties and then give way to

the next heresy to attack the Church of Jesus Christ.”

We need to be very clear that what we are dealing with here in the movement Emergent

Church. We are not simply dealing with differences within evangelical theology or with

secondary issues upon which Christians must agree to disagree. We are not dealing with

what the apostle…we are dealing with what the apostle Paul would describe as “another

1

gospel.”It is another gospel which is not a gospel to begin with.

Here is another devilish attempt at muddying the waters of the pure gospel of Jesus

Christ. Well, should we be concerned? Should we be taking a few hours out on a Saturday to look at this new phenomena that is coming in to the Church and claming to be

Christian? Well, we should be as concerned as the apostle Paul was concerned in combating heresy that attacked the Church in his own day. We are called to “earnestly con

2

tend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.”And Paul says that we are

3

“set for the defence of the gospel.”

So the answer is a definite yes. We should be concerned about this false, heretical Emerging Church that is coming upon the scenes and you will soon see to hear about it or get to

hear about it.

One pastor on the fringes of the movement, although it is not entirely Emergent in the

heretical sense of it, Mark Driscoll, who was one of the early young pastors who got involved in this and how it all started in the United States as a group of men gathering together to meet. None of them seemed to have much theological understanding at all, but

they seemed to get together and hold conferences. And out of this grew the Emerging

Church. But he says, “I have to distance myself from one of the many streams in the

Emerging Church because of theological differences. The Emerging Church is the latest

version of Liberalism. The only difference is that the old Liberalism accommodated modernity and the new Liberalism accommodates Postmodernity.”

This really brings us to the heart of the movement. The Emerging Church is a move to

make the gospel attractive and acceptable to Postmodern man. The big challenge, we are

told, is how to tap in to the heart and mind of our Postmodern generation. In order to do

this we must start, of course, they say, with 21st century man, start with where he is at.

1

See Galatians 1:6

2

See Jude 3

3

See Philippians 1:17

How do we do that we ask. Well, we must start with experimentation. After all, as one

Emergent leader tells us, “That is exactly what God did when he created the world.”

Moynagh says this. “Experiments are one of the defining features of Emerging Church.

What is evolution if it is not a history of experimentation? One species flourishes. Another doesn’t. A third mutates.”

Of course we tell him if he read Genesis he would know there is no such thing to begin

with so his movement would flop there.

But he goes on and it gets even worse. He then goes on to say that that is exactly what

God did, experimented when he created Adam. To quote him again, “Does Genesis

two,” he asks, “contain a picture of God in experimental mode? He places Adam in the

Garden and then decides that it is not good for man to be alone. ‘I will make a helper

4

suitable for him.’He forms all the animals and brings them to Adam to see what he

would call them. But for Adam no suitable helper was found. Has God’s experiment not

succeeded? So God tries again. He creates the woman. The experiment produced the

desired result. God seems to be learning.”

He quickly, of course, see the heresy cries coming and admits that seems to go against

one of the basic attributes of God. But he says that God seems to limit himself. He goes

on to say, “It is a part of God’s perfection that he can be surprised by creation. He has

created in us, for example, with not the songs that humans compose. Each new chart

buster can amaze and perhaps delight him. There is something [?] fitting about a wonderful surprise. Is God to be denied that emotion?”

Do you see where these people are coming from? No understanding of a theology of

God.

One fellow Emergent leader, George Lings, takes great delight in what has been said.

And he adds this complement in the book, “I am glad Mike has been daring and picked

up on the open and creative relationship God has with his creatures to which the Bible

testifies,” to which I say-and this is me-it most certainly does not. And then he goes

on, “And which makes so much better sense of a world where things go wrong. I would

only add that God’s grand experiment or risk was to choose to create beings who have

genuine freedom to love him or not. All the rest flows from this audacious fact.” We are

also told, “Experimentation is part of human being. So it will be second nature for Christians to try and try again with church.”

So after 2000 years we have still not got it right and we must keep on trying and experimenting.

To say that the Emerging Church has a faulty theology of God is an understatement. Any

heresy usually has a defective view of God himself and the Emerging Church has gone

4

See Genesis 2:18

wrong on its attempts to spread the gospel because it has a wrong view of God and a

wrong view of the Bible.

Well, at the heart of the Emerging Church is the adopting of a Postmodern culture. We

are living in what has come to be termed as Postmodernism. You see, we pass through

the Premodern era, a period stretching from Medieval times up to the French Revolution

of 1789. That was the Premodern era. In such a period man had difficulty in believing

the supernatural. Spirits, demons, hell, heaven and an afterlife and even much superstition is said to have abounded in that period. You would not have had difficulty in persuading people that God or even gods existed. Such beliefs, however, began to be challenged and their sources of authority. This began the Modern era, said to have begun with

the Enlightenment period. Philosophers like Emmanuel Kant (1724-1804) began to challenge and question the dogmas of the past age. The Enlightenment would bring in the

age of Modernity.

One writer, Michael Kruger, says, “With the rise of the Enlightenment there came a new

guardian of truth to replace the Church. Science. No longer would human beings stand

for the irrational musings and archaic dogmatism of religion. Science, with reason as the

foundation, was the new god. And all intellectual theories had to bow and pay homage in

order to be seriously considered. Science viewed Christians as being naively committed

to ancient myths, unable to see past their bias and to take an objective and neutral look at

the world. So Modernity proffers the idea that mankind, armed with rationalism and science, is able to access absolute truth and make unlimited progress toward a better life for

itself. Therefore at its core Modernity is a celebration of human autonomy.”

Well, such a period, of course, was a very exciting period in the history of mankind. It

was a period of discovery, a period of development and a period of growth. It appeared

to offer mankind hope for the future. However, the discoveries being made were not too

deliver. Not only has science and learning not provided man with the satisfaction desired

and prayed for, but it has neither provided him with an answer to life’s most perplexing

questions.

In the area of religion the Modernist theologians have destroyed any belief in a supernatural God who spoke through a divinely inspired and infallible Bible. These two

worldviews, then-Premodernism and Modernism-have failed miserably. Of course,

we would expect them to do so as neither can be said to be firmly rooted in the Word of

God.

Well, we now come to our present worldview today. It is called Postmodern,

Postmodernism, a Postmodern generation. Well, it is a matter of debate among scholars

as to when this new period began, but many place it at the time of the collapse of the

Berlin wall in 1989. Some have put it somewhere in the 70s with the sexual revolution

and all the rest. But whichever we say, it is a new era that has come in, Postmodern.

With both Premodernism and Modernism failing to satisfy, man has become disillusioned. Answers to the meaning, purpose and direction of life have not been found. Man has been looking for truth and meaning. The Premodernist stores it in a revelation-albeit

the wrong one-the Church. Well, at least the Church of our day. The Modernist stores it

in science and reason. The Postmodernist now sees his worldview as one in which, for

example, that there is really no such thing as truth. So that is Postmodernism. There

really is no such thing as absolute truth. Absolute truth, he tells us, cannot be. Truth is

rather created and not found. So a culture, for example, may invent its own truth. And

yet another culture, its own version of truth even though they may be contrary to each

other. But there can be no universal truth that belongs to all and everyone. In other

words, there is no absolute truth and it must not even be sought.

Michael Kruger says, “Postmodernity, in contrast to Modernity, rejects any notion of objective truth and insists that the only absolute in the universe is that there are no absolutes. Tolerance is the supreme virtue and exclusivity, the supreme vice. Truth is not

grounded in reality or in any sort of authoritative text, but is simply constructed by the

mind of the individual or socially constructed.”

Another author says, “For the Postmodernist thinkers the very idea of truth is decayed

and disintegrated. It is no longer knowable. At the end of the day truth is simply what

we, as individuals and communities, make it to be and nothing more.”

If you think that is not yet affecting your worldview you are wrong. It is. We have so

many different paths in society, don’t we? So many religions. We are not allowed to say

that one has absolute truth, somebody else is wrong. No, no. You can’t say that. Everything is relative. If it is right for them, then it is right. If they are happy, if that is their

belief, then it is acceptable.

But for Postmodern thinking, “Well if it is…if to them, you know, it’s a flower, it’s a

flower. If to somebody else it’s a weed, it’s a weed. It is whatever you think it to be.”

And hasn’t that come in even in subtlety in things like, with so called, certain crimes,

homophobic crimes, so called, racist crimes, so called. If the person perceives it to be

such then it is. There is no real objective truth.

If such is now the culture and the world we are living in how are we to get the gospel

across?

Well, first we must…first we are to remember that the world in which we live must never

be allowed to shape the gospel that we believe. The Emerging Church has embraced-

like its forefather the Modernist-the belief of its age. It, too, denies that there is such a

thing as truth.

Take the words of Brian McLaren, one of its main architects, “Ask me of Christianity.

My version of it, yours, the pope’s, whoever’s, it is orthodox meaning true. And here is

my honest answer. A little, but not yet. Assuming by Christianity you mean the Christian’s understanding of the world and God, Christian’s opinion on soul, text and culture. I

have to say that we probably have a couple of things right, but a lot of things wrong. And

even more spreads before us unseen and unimagined. But at least our eyes are open. To

be a Christian in a genuinely orthodox way is not to claim to have truth captured, stuffed

and mounted on the wall.”

This is a man who claims to give adherence to the Word of God.

Christians for over 2000 years have believed, rejoiced and often died for the absolute

truth they find in the teachings of Christ and his Word. Yet after all these years we are

now told that there really is no such claim on truth.

Interesting that, McLaren’s latest book is called The Secret Message of Jesus. He and those who follow him are constantly telling us that they are dissatisfied with doing church the traditional way. They are tired of evangelical right they tell us. They are seeking to break free from all that they belonged to the past. Could it be, I ask, that such people have never known the truth and have never known the real Jesus of the Bible? Could it be that they are so dissatisfied because they have never known the liberating power of the gospel of Jesus

Christ? I believe that is so. Christians have traditionally and robustly rejoiced in the certainties and steadfastness of the foundation of the gospel. We have read about it,

preached it with conviction and sung about it with rejoicing. It houses the Emergent

Church, Emerging so called Christians see such.

Rob and Christine Bell, his wife, in the beginning of being interviewed said this concerning the Bible, but they have discovered the Bible as a human product. “I do the thinking,”

she says, “that we figured out the Bible, that we knew what it means.” Now she says, “I

have no idea what most of it means. And yet I feel life is big again like life used to be

black and white and now it is color.”

Brian McLaren sums it all up in the closing of his book A Generous Orthodoxy. “Consider for a minute what it would mean to get the glory of God finally and fully right in

your thinking or to get a fully formed opinion of God’s goodness or holiness. Then I

think you will feel the irony. All these years of pursuing orthodoxy ended up like this, in

front of all this glory, understanding nothing.”

So McLaren would like us to believe at the end of it all we really end up understanding

and knowing nothing. And yet the Christian can say with a certainty like Jeremiah nine

verse three, “And they bend their tongues like their bow for lies: but they are not valiant

for the truth upon the earth; for they proceed from evil to evil, and they know not me,

5

saith the LORD.”

Unbelief and uncertainty like this is found nowhere in the teaching of Christ or the New

Testament epistles. In fact, the Christian message is not only solid, but simple, too. The

message of the Bible is neither lost, uncertain, complex or difficult. It is a message that is

clear, plain and easy to understand.

5

Jeremiah 9:3

Oh, yes, there may be a few difficult passages in Daniel or Revelation to interpret, but the

overall message of the Bible is simple and plain. And for people like Christine Bell we

would say she ought to get on her knees, humble herself before the God of heaven and

submit to his authoritative, inspired, easy to understand revelation.

The message of the Bible is not complex. They seem to great delight in saying, “We can’t

understand anything. We don’t know truth. We don’t know what it is all about. And yet

life is big again.”

We say, “The god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest

6 the light of the glorious gospel…”

How do we share the gospel, then, in their eyes with the unchurched? Well, one of the

key words in the Emerging Church is missional. That is the big word, missional. We

want to be a missional church.

What do we understand by missional? Well, the old meaning, of course, of doing missions, going to the lost, preaching the everlasting gospel of God’s saving grace and rescuing sinners from hell and seeing them get into heaven is not quite what they mean by

missional. A clue to what being a missional Christian is all about is found in the

McLaren’s work, his most well known, although he seems to be spewing out these books

and heresies one after another. But in [?] he says this. “But what about heaven and hell

you ask. Is everybody in? My reply. Why do you consider me qualified to make this

pronouncement? Isn’t this God’s business? Isn’t it clear that I do not believe this is the

right question for a missional Christian to ask?”

Let me break in and say there what caused men like William Carey and others to leave

everything behind was the eternal soul of the people that they were to go and preach to,

but that they were concerned about the eternal destiny of man’s never dying soul.

Not so being missional within the Emerging Church. McLaren goes on, “Can’t we talk

for a while about God’s will being done here on earth as it is heaven instead of jumping

to how to escape earth and get to heaven as quickly as possible? Can’t we talk for a

while about overthrowing and undermining every hellish stronghold in our lives and in

our world?”

Doesn’t this sound very much like the old “damnable heresy” of the Modernist, Liberal

social gospel that emptied our churches and robbed the gospel of all its saving power?

He goes on to say, “Missional Christian faith asserts that Jesus did not come to make

some people saved and others condemned. Jesus did not come to help some people be

right while leaving everyone else to be wrong. Jesus did not come to create another exclusive religion, Judaism having been exclusive based on genetics and Christianity being

exclusive based on belief which can be a tougher requirement than genetics.”

6

2 Corinthians 4:4

McLaren has no understanding of the New Testament gospel at all. He himself admits

so. He says, “We must continually be aware,” and this is him speaking, “that the old, old

story may not be the true, true story.” He goes on, in other words, “We must be open to

the perpetual possibility that our received understanding of the gospel may be faulty, imbalanced, poorly [?] or downright warped and twisted.”

Here we must retain the good, Protestant, evangelical and biblical instinct to allow Scripture to critique tradition including our dominant and most recent tradition and including

our tradition’s understanding of the gospel. In this sense, Christians in missional dialogue

must continually expect to rediscover the gospel.

Note how he is prepared to us-or we would say misuse-Scripture to critique what he

says is tradition. He wants us to rediscover the gospel he says. Yet he doesn’t even know

what the gospel is himself. This really is the gospel according to Brian McLaren. It is a

gospel full of uncertainty, mystery and we say falsehood. And he wants us to join him in

his journey of rediscovery?

The gospel of McLaren and the Emerging Church is not the saving gospel from sin and

hell, but another gospel of making a better world and a better you.

But he goes on to say, “From this understanding we place less emphasis on whose lineage, rights, doctrines, structures and terminology are right and move emphasis on whose

action, service, outreach, kindness and effectiveness are good in order to help our world

get back on the road to being truly and wholly good again the way God created it to be.

“We are here on a mission to join God,” he tells us, ” in bringing blessings to our needy

world. We hope to bring God’s blessing to you,” he says, “whoever you are and whatever you believe. And if you would like to join us in this mission and the faith that creates and nourishes, you are welcome.”

I say, “No thank you.”

Note his intention is to join God in bringing blessing to a needy world. He tells us it

really doesn’t matter what you believe. Why, of course, would you when none has arrived at truth anyhow or orthodoxy anyway because he has imbibed a Postmodern age?

His gospel is not to get you into the kingdom, but to bring the kingdom to you.

Dan Kimball, another Emergent leader, says, “Our faith also includes kingdom living.

Part of which is the responsibility to fight local and global and social justice on behalf of

the poor and needy. Our example is Jesus,” he tells us, “who spent his time among the

lepers, the poor and the needy.”

Are we saying that these thing are unimportant and unnecessary? Well, by no means.

Jesus did, in fact, heal the sick, raise the dead, feed the hungry and perform other miracles. We are not saying doing good works is a bad thing. No, they follow the fruits of the gospel. Yet we must always remember that the forming of such miracles was first and

foremost to point to who he was and what he had come to do, of course, to testify that he

was the Savior of lost sinners.

Jesus, in fact, said virtually nothing about social injustice, nothing about the environment

or political tyranny or eradication of poverty or making the world a better place.

What is the true gospel itself? Whereas it has transformed the lives, that society has been

so changed for the better, this was never the priority of Christ, the apostles or the early

church. Christ did not come to bring a paradise to earth through his Church. He came to

rescue sinners from the wrath to come, to give spiritual life to the dead, to draw men back

to the Father, to be a propitiation for men’s sins, to shed his blood for the forgiveness of

those sins, to provide a mansion in heaven, to reconcile sinners to a holy God. He himself

7

has said that he had not come to bring peace on earth, but a sword.As the truth divides

and brings a different color…literal thought, of course where people fight each other. That

is not the gospel. Christians willingly lay down their lives for the gospel, but the sword is

the Word of God which cuts against truth and separates from truth and error. That can

never happen with McLaren’s gospel or the gospel of the Emerging Church because it

has imbibed a Postmodern culture that tells us there is no such thing as truth.

So he certainly can’t earnestly contend for the faith because he doesn’t know what that

faith is. This aspect of the social here and now gospel is seen in McLaren’s two questions that he asks which are these. What are the biggest problems destroying our world?

And what do the life and teaching of Jesus have to say about these global crises?

The Emerging Church is more world focused than heaven focused. The early Church

8

looked for new heavens and a new earth wherein dwelleth righteousness.The Emerging

Church is man centered. Its starting point is not with the truth as expressed in God’s

Word, but-imbibing a cultural philosophy of the day-truth cannot be established anyway.

The well being of man is the beginning. We hear things like, “We will come to you

rather than you come to us.” “We’ll do church on your terms rather than on ours or the

Bible’s terms.”

Rob Bell writes for the media in the States, but all this may be new to you, but it is big

news in the States and it will come over here. They consider him the next Billy Graham

although why I am not sure. He has neither gifts nor theology, well, as he had in his

younger day. Rob Bell says, “For Jesus the question wasn’t how do I get into heaven, but

how do I bring heaven here. The goal isn’t escaping this world, but making this world the

kind of place God can come to. And God is making us into the kind of people who can do

this task, this kind of work.”

7

See Matthew 10:34

8

See 2 Peter 3:13

One wonders which Bible are these people reading. He seems to be ignorant of the fact

that Scripture teaches, “The heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements

shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned

9

up. Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved….”What does Peter say? Not

put on a global mask to solve the world’s dilemmas and problems, but in light of this Peter says, “What manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness,

looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on

10

fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat?”There, and as we

have quoted earlier, “We look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth right

11

eousness.”

I want to look-the time is moving on-to the mystical aspect of the Emerging Church.

Due to the fact that the Emerging Church is not truth based means it is susceptible to all

forms of error and falsehood as one might expect. As we are not moved by the truth of

God’s Word then we will seek experiences outside of that Word. And that is exactly

what we find in the Emergent movement. There is no real Jesus in the Emerging Church.

I believe it is not the Jesus we find in the Bible. Christ himself warned that, “Many will

12

come in my name.”And there appears to be as many Jesus’ in the world as there are

Jones’ in Wales. The big question is: Which Jesus do we have and which Jesus are we

following?

Peter Rollins, an Emergent Leader in Northern Ireland-so it has come over into this

country already-Icon. They all have strange names. They don’t have, you know, Emergent Evangelical Church or Emergent Church. They have stupid, silly names. And here is

one Icon. And the very name will suggest where it is going.

Icon, “We as Icon,” they say, “are developing a theology which derives from the mystics,

a theology without theology to complement our religion without religion.”

You notice all this double talk. It doesn’t make sense. And you read their books. It

doesn’t make sense. Much of the Emergent Church thinking is not based on what the Bible teaches. And they do not derive their theology from the Bible, but rather, their theology-if it can be called that-from experience.

Dan Kimball, another Emergent leader says, “The old paradigm taught that if you have

the right teaching you will experience God. The new paradigms says that if you experience God you will have the right teaching.”

Another Emergent leader [?] in England, so it has arrived on our shores near to here,

Sanctus One, you know, so it is not, you know, the Baptist Tabernacle or somewhere.

They adopt one of their silly names. Sanctus One which is actually in Manchester says,

9

2 Peter 3:10-11

10

2 Peter 3:11-12

11

2 Peter 3:13

12

See Matthew 24:5, Mark 13:6, Luke 21:8

“We believe that God is not defined by theology. Experience is vital and experience defines us.”

Now in our second talk I am going to jump to the next section because we will be all afternoon otherwise, but I want to jump on briefly and then we can close with some questions. You see, this searching for meaning and experience has not driven this movement

to the Word of God, but back into the world of Medieval Catholicism and Eastern mysticism.

Of course the Roman Catholic Church will endorse anything that furthers its own cause.

An official endorsement in 1965 by the Vatican reads this. “In Hinduism men seek release from the trials of the present life by ascetical practices, profound meditation and

recourse to God in confidence and love. Buddhism proposes a way of life by which man

can with confidence and trust attain a state of perfect liberation and reach supreme illumination either through their own efforts or by the aid of divine help.” And then they go

on to say, “The Catholic Church rejects nothing of what is true and holy in these religions.”

The Second Vatican Counsel then or some time afterwards mentioned, “It longs to set

forth the way it understands the presence and function of the Roman Catholic,” in this

context, “Church in the world today. Therefore the world which the Counsel has in mind

is the whole human family seen in the context of everything which envelopes it. This is

the reason why this sacred synod in proclaiming the noble destiny of man and affirming

an element of the divine in him offers to cooperate unreservedly with mankind in fostering a sense of brotherhood to correspond to this destiny of theirs.”

You are not surprised, then, at the Emerging Church going down the pathway not just to

Eastern mysticism, but to Romanism as well. In Soul Shaper: Exploring Spirituality and

Contemplative Practices in Youth Ministry Tony Jones advocates 16 ancient future, both,

spiritual tools or disciplines such as-quote-“the Jesus prayer, [?] diviner, silence and

solitude, stations of the cross, center in prayer, [?] and the labyrinth.”

Richard Bennett, a former Roman Catholic priest says this, “Assuming that the Roman

Catholic Evangelical split over the gospel is a thing of the past,” which we know it is not,

“Jones begins by defining his Postmodern approach to youth ministry by combing aspects

of what he sees as common spirituality and evangelicalism, Roman Catholicism and

Eastern Orthodox traditions along with Eastern religious practices gleaned from Buddhism and Hinduism.” Then it goes on, “Tony Jones’ involvement with youth ministry

and leaders of youth ministry is particularly dangerous. This is the cause of cases of obscure heretical practices from papal Rome when he then passes off on the unsuspecting as

if he has rediscovered a long hidden spiritual treasure for Postmodern Christianity. His

major goal is to make his very Roman Catholic view of the past come alive in the present,

something Bible believers should consider carefully especially regarding his very young

audience.”

This man, by the way, Tony Jones, is a foul mouthed individual who uses foul language

of the worst kind even in describing the Bible. It is for this reason that you will find some

Emergent Churches lighting candles, crosses and other ritual things being performed, all

done in seeking a deeper experience of the divine. So they light their candles. They will

have their crosses They will have their music and their lights. Of course, they will all be

different.

But what are they doing? They are seeking an encounter with the divine. They are seeking an encounter with the spiritual. For the true evangelical we say we are not seeking or

searching for the divine God out there whoever he may be. We have found him in Jesus

Christ, the Jesus alone in the pages of God’s Word.

We are never against experiences, but experiences come from the Word of God and are

based and tested by that very Word.

You will notice many of these people talk about seeking the divine and their masks that

they are having with McLaren and all this everything must change in 11 states of the

United States. They are all telling, “We are seeking something.”

I am not seeking anything. I found it. I am not seeking God or deeper experiences. He is

there in the Word in the written page.

And just in closing: Many young people will be attracted to this Emergent Church. They

will pack them out. The man we just quoted from, Tony Jones, you have seen his influence as to so many Emergent leaders among the youth. The Emergent Church targets the

young and is of particular attraction to young people. One of the reasons is that it uses an

anything goes approach in worship. You can have your bands. You can have your hip

hop, your reggae, whatever music you want. You can have it. You can bring your drums

and whatever you want into worship, whatever is appealing, whatever you want, whatever you are into. Bring it along.

And people will think, “This is great.”

But it is just like the world. You can bring anything into it. All forms of worship and

fleshiness come in. It would not amiss to say it is an almost anything goes approach. Any

form of music no matter how much it represents the debased culture around us seems to

be acceptable and even encouraged. So it will attract the young people who have no understanding of the gospel.

Another reason for why it attracts and will attract the young people is because it appeals

to their sinful nature. It has almost a no rules policy. If you are to go into an Emerging

Church you will find standard. Whatever is right for you is right. You will find one

standing, another sitting, another slouching because anything goes. Just fill out whatever

takes your fancy. We will have appeals, not appeals. There is no such thing as, “Let all

13

things be done decently and in order.”However, this pandering and [?] to the young is

sinful.

The young of our church-and they are to be those who are shown authority and leadership-they are not to be those who are considered as to what they would like to see in

church or what pleases them or what will attract them or what will keep you here. Leadership shall be done by those who are mature adults in the faith. And this pattern of lead

14

ership is seen right throughout Scripture. “Children, obey your parents in the Lord.”

“Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your

15

souls.”Considering those who would be leaders there is one that ruleth his household

well having his church or household in subjection.

See, man’s heart is rebellious and will be attracted to this fleshy, false gospel of the

Emergent Church. It is a denial of the clear truth oriented certain foundation of biblical

Christianity.

And I am going to close by summing up two quotes from the Emerging Church and then

we will hand back to our chairman. Sanctus One, an Emerging Church in Manchester

says, as stated on their blog site, “Churches in the West are increasingly experimenting

with more symbolic, reflective spiritualities [?] from Orthodox and Celtic traditions and

sing digital technologies and ambient music. How far can we engage with the Eastern

spiritualities of our Sikh, Hindu and Muslim neighbors whilst retaining our Christian integrity? What might an Emergent Church look like in a multi faith context?”

Our second quote, “Does a little dose of Buddhism thrown into a belief system somehow

kill off the Christian part?”

Real Christians would say a loud, “Yes.”

“My Buddhism doesn’t, except for the unfortunate inability to embrace Jesus,” as if that

is a side issue, “is a better Christian based on Jesus’ description of what a Christian does,

but almost every Christian I know…”

It could be well, he doesn’t know any Christians.

“If they are using Matthew 26 as a guide she would be a sheep and almost every Christian I personally know would be a goat.”

And I say in the Emerging Church they are all goats and may be warned and discerning

about Emerging Church?

13

See 1 Corinthians 14:40

14

Ephesians 6:1

15

Hebrews 13:17

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