It’s the end of the World as we Know It (and I feel fine)

But realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come. For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God,  holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power; Avoid such men as these. For among them are those who enter into households and captivate weak women weighed down with sins, led on by various impulses, always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. Just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses, so these men also oppose the truth, men of depraved mind, rejected in regard to the faith. But they will not make further progress; for their folly will be obvious to all, just as Jannes’s and Jambres’s folly was also.

EndThe last days…it always sounds kind of ominous doesn’t it? People everywhere are curious as to the matters concerning the end of times. According to the Mayans the world may or may not have been supposed to end on December 21…it didn’t. In 2011 according to Harold Camping the world was supposed to end on May 21 October 21. I remember when I was a kid seeing the book 88 Reasons why the Lord will Return in 1988, and then the ever popular sequel 89 Reasons why the Lord will Return in 1989, I always supposed the 89th reason was something like “because it didn’t happen in 1988”. Apocalyptic themes (and post-Apocalyptic for that matter) have always been major themes in movies.

The truth of the matter is we don’t know how soon the world will end (and I feel fine.) However the Bible does help paint a picture of what the last days will look like for us here. And the above verse is one of the ones we can look to.

But realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come. For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God,  holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power;

Notice the list of transgressions: lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, etc…Now you have to understand at this point that, because of peoples sinful nature, by and large, people have always been this way, they have always followed this list of transgressions. It’s not like people 2000 years ago had a more pleasant disposition, any quick study of world history should confirm this. What Paul is talking about here aren’t regular people you meet every day on the street, no, Paul is talking here about people IN the church…let me say that again with a more dramatic tone..

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The Five

Five amazing blog posts that I read last week that are so brilliant I wish I had written them…but I didn’t, so I’m passing them along to you.

It’s a shame that I can’t actually recall the last time I heard the congregation singing in church. This blog post by Mike Raiter, explores that idea a bit, it’s called The slow death of congregational singing.

Last week, my post on the evils of the W-F heresy got the most views, it began with a look at Joel Osteen’s new book I Declare. This post by Dr. Al Mohler, looks at Joel’s appearance on CNN in correlation to the book release.

The issue of tithing is one that really gets to me, it’s grossly misinterpreted by many, MANY churches theses days. This blog post by Daniel Neades looks at one of the verses often used to confuse this teaching, it’s called: Cain and Abel, Law and Gospel. (Also I recommend if you have a few hours you look over the rest of the posts in the series, it’s very thorough and excellent.)

The doctrine of hell is one that many people have issue with, whether or not they believe God would actually send people to hell for eternity or not. This blog post from my friend, Pastor David Shrock looks at, from a certain point of view, the beauty of hell, it’s called: Eternal Judgment: An Unbelievable Problem or A Blessed Promise?

This blog post, by Paul David Tripp looks at the issue of Pride in the Pulpit and wonders about the heart attitude of the pastor that preaches a sermon primarily on the law.

I Declare = Word-Faith Preachers are Agents of Satan

I Declare this book isn’t worth the paper it’s printed on

Joel Osteen’s new book released yesterday. Osteen’s newest self-help book is called I Declare-31 Promises to Speak Over Your Life. The description on Osteen’s website reads:

The words we speak set the course for our life. If you want to know what you’re going to be like in five years, listen to the words you are saying about yourself today. Now you can take charge of your future with the help of Joel Osteen’s latest book-I Declare. Filled with 31 written declarations-one for each day-you can declare, in faith, God’s powerful Word over your life and watch your surroundings change in incredible ways. You will move forward to a promising future from the fruit of your words! (Source)

This reminds me of another book I am reading by a somewhat lesser known Mega-Pastor John Hagee, his book is called The Power of the Prophetic Blessing,  I was saving my comments about the lies of Word-Faith pastors till I did my book review but since it seems to be heresy hurricane season I will go ahead and tell you what the Bible says that is contrary to this heresy…and I’d like all other pastors that are in cahoots with these W-F heretics to take notice, it doesn’t matter how many people are “getting saved” in these churches, false doctrine makes false converts. As a pastor you should be protecting your sheep from these men, not giving them a platform to spew their lies and half-truths. And though I am referring specifically to Mark Driscoll, who has the nerve to call Joel Osteen a brother in Christ from the pulpit/stage on a Sunday morning and participate in a Google hangout with Steven Furtick to promote his new book, there are other pastors out there that will promote these lies. This is more than a lack of discernment on Driscoll’s part, Osteen and Furtick are both preaching a message contrary to the true gospel, and contrary to the Bible as a whole. In fact the Word of Faith heresy is the exact opposite of the life we are called to as Christians.

The prosperity gospel is a damnable lie, that makes mans comfort take precedence over Gods sovereign control. It makes God into Continue reading

The Mega-Pastors Training Manual

The New Book from Mega-Church Pastor Perry Furtick!

Available now on Glamazon.com and at your local Way of Life Christian Bookstore!

Does your congregation need to shut up listen to your story? Do they need to quit whining about going deeper into the Bible and do what you tell them? Are the unblessed members of your congregation not tithing enough to pay for your church?Are the members of your congregation holding you back from unleashing your fullest potential as a pastor? Do you desire to be a pastor of pastors?

This book is for you!

Just listen to the chapter titles:

Chapter 1: How to Get Your Ego Through the Door.

Chapter 2: How to Read Yourself into Every Verse of Scripture! (except the boring ones) Continue reading

Wolves in Sheeps Clothing

Scarier to me than the liberal “Christians”, Christians that like the idea of Jesus but not the reality, are the Christians that are “wolves in sheep’s clothing” These are the pastors, speakers and authors that pervert God’s Biblical truth for their own gain. There are many examples of this I could easily point to…and I’m not talking about a disagreement over music styles or the color of the carpet…I mean men who are either intentionally (or sometimes, though rarely, unintentionally) leading sheep astray with empty rhetoric, lies and twisted scripture. (side note: Does anyone else think “Twisted Scripture” would be a cool band name? Just me…okay then)

For example:

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Obvious Obfuscation

Why outreach doesn’t work

Have you ever spent so much time looking at something that, even though it was right in front you, you couldn’t see it? Or like last night I was watching Jeopardy! (I love Jeopardy!, but it’s not as much fun if there isn’t someone else watching who can hear you shout all the right answers) and a question was asked and I thought of the correct answer but I doubted I had it right because it was too obvious. The verse I am looking at today is kind of like that. We treat it like a gut check, like: “are you doing hard things for God?” but it’s really not like that at all…in fact it’s just the opposite. From the time I wrote my post called Pearls Before Swine, (which if you haven’t read you really should go back and read not only is it delightful and entertaining, it also is a primer for this post) I’ve really been thinking a lot about the sheep and goats verse I quoted, so this post is really a continuation of that post. Our pastor used the sheep and goats verse a few Sundays ago in a sermon and, alas he used it incorrectly, I have considered talking to him about it and I believe I will, but I haven’t yet. You see, we need to carefully look at this verse, because it really is a more effective model for outreach than most churches across the country follow.  Let’s look at the verses…

 “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. And he will place the sheep on his right, but the goats on the left. Then the King will say to those on his right,

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Dances with Wolves

Recently I saw a friend of mine, who is in the ministry, post a video on his facebook page by Steven Furtick with the comment underneath that read “I love this guy.” Now maybe…perhaps, I know too much about the semi-pelagian (at best) nature of Furtick’s “ministry”, perhaps I’m too aware of the nature of the sheep-abuse that happens in Furtick’s “church” or the erroneous nature of praying “Sun Stand Still” prayers that Furtick seems to be all about. Perhaps I’m too aware of the problems with having churches that are a mile wide and an inch deep. I watched the video clip and while I can’t deny that Furtick is a good motivational speaker, the clip I heard was all law. The message boiled down to “do more, try harder” where is the gospel in that? In fact that kind of message is the very opposite of the gospel, the gospel isn’t about what YOU do but about what Christ did for you, it’s about how even though you don’t measure up to God’s standard…Christ does, and he willingly sacrificed His life so that by his blood you would be seen as right before God. However Furtick’s message boiled down to basically “you suck as a Christian if you don’t do x, y or z.” and this message is par for the course for him. As with all false teachers I pray the Holy Spirit would show them their error and convict them of misleading so many.  The Bible has some very strong things to say about false teachers words like “wolves in sheeps clothing” and “accursed” are used for anyone that preaches a gospel contrary to the true gospel.

My Theology Thursday question for you is this: How far do you go to warn others about these false teachers such as Furtick, Bell, McLaren, Warren, Hybels, Noble and others? Should we share everything we know or do we let it go with an “even a broken clock is right twice a day” mentality? Do we trust the other person’s discernment skills; maybe they just aren’t aware or know as much as we know about the person in question. How much of the relationship do you risk straining when, even though your intentions are good you could be heard totally wrong? What would you do?