Disciples of the Emergent Church
Ron Martoia >>, Scott McKnight >>, Richard Forster >>, Brian McLaren >>, Leonard Sweet>>, Frank Viola >>, Rick Warren >>, Nelus Niemandt >>, Stephan Joubert >>, Rob Bell >>, Thomas Bandy>>, Bob Buford >>, Ken Blanchard >>, Martin Buber >>, Tony Campolo >>, Chuck Colson>>, Mark Driscoll >>, Peter Drucker >>, Eddie Gibbs >>, Tony Jones >>, Dan Kimball >>, Thomas Keating >>, Erwin McManus >>, Thomas Merton >>, Donald Miller >>, Henri Nouwen >>, Doug Pagitt >>, Robert Webber >>, John Shelby Spong >>, Jesus Seminar (Marcus Borg) >>>
The following articles have been written by different authors, please take time and consider their supposition before coming to a premature verdict.
When Doctrinal Beliefs Become Irrelevant Pdf >>>
A NEW Anointing- Pentecost the spirit being poured out on ALL Flesh Pdf >>>
Please take note and be warned!
How is it possible that we make such fatal mistakes by following certain people and think we are still in right standing with God!? We must have been misled in some or the other way and this has caused our discernment to deteriorate, if we ever had discernment! We have moved from using Scripture as our basis for discernment to some other way of getting to the Status Quo in the Church. This pertaining to the Calvinistic as well as the Pentecostal and Charismatic sides of the theological spectrum.
The Calvinistic presupposition that the Gifts of the Spirit have ended with the Acts Church has cost us dearly when you look at the history of our beloved country. This of course, contradictory to Scripture. When you look at what the other side of the theological spectrum have done and are doing with the Gifts, contrary to Scripture it might be understandable to some extent!
The Gifts of the Spirit have not ended but it must be practiced very conservatively and in accordance with Scripture. Stating that it doesn’t exist contradicts Scripture and to say that it has to be practiced in the way that the many Charismatic and Pentecostals do, also contradicts Scripture.
Thus we have to use discernment with exegesis of Scripture and be careful whom we follow. Sound exegesis comes from serious Bible study, knowledge of the Word of God and application of principles used by The Lord Himself and the disciples when dealing with Scripture.
If you listen to people who don’t go about this with the necessary discernment they could lead you down the road to Babylon. The one side of the spectrum doesn’t see it because they think they cannot be deceived because they are the elect and the other side doesn’t care because they are on such a high.
The question still being, what will we do at the end of this? Will we repent and listen to God for a change and really apply the mind in studying The Word of God and then have the courage to do what He says? This for our and our family’s sakes!! Or will we end up in Babylon?
Revelation 18:4 I heard another voice from heaven, saying, “Come out of her, my people, so that you will not participate in her sins and receive of her plagues;
We have a choice, other than the Calvinistic presupposition about the non existence of the free will!!
Revelation 3:13 ‘He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.’
Let the following not be true of us!
Revelation 3:14 “To the angel of the church in Laodicea write: The Amen, the faithful and true Witness, the Beginning of the creation of God, says this:
Revelation 3:15 ‘I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot; I wish that you were cold or hot.
Revelation 3:16 ‘So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of My mouth.
Revelation 3:17 ‘Because you say, “I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing,” and you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked,
Will we listen!!
Revelation 3:18 I advise you to buy from Me gold refined by fire so that you may become rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself, and that the shame of your nakedness will not be revealed; and eye salve to anoint your eyes so that you may see.
Do you use any of these people’s Books, Teachings or Quotes!? Why!? Is the Word of God not sufficient!?
Please stop following the avalanche away from God’s Word! How will we know who they are and what they stand for?
Just let them speak then you will know, as you can see! The question being, do you want to see the reality?
Let them say Shibboleth! They can’t anymore, if they ever could!
Judges 12:5 The Gileadites captured the fords of the Jordan opposite Ephraim. And it happened when any of the fugitives of Ephraim said, “Let me cross over,” the men of Gilead would say to him, “Are you an Ephraimite?” If he said, “No,”
Judges 12:6 then they would say to him, “Say now, ‘Shibboleth.'” But he said, “Sibboleth,” for he could not pronounce it correctly. Then they seized him and slew him at the fords of the Jordan. Thus there fell at that time 42,000 of Ephraim.
I do not for one moment invoke aggression but I make a plea that we stop the toleration of the misuse of the Word of God and that we stand up for the Word of God!
If they say “Sibboleth”, the wrong pronunciation, or in other words, if they don’t say what the Bible says, let them be removed from amongst us. They shouldn’t be counted amongst us.
What in effect is happening now in practice is that we, whom actually stand up for the Word of God, are being sidelined and are ravaged by the intruders and we feel unwanted in the Churches whom go along with these people.
Proverbs 16:25 There is a way which seems right to a man, But its end is the way of death.
2 Peter 2:1 But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will also be false teachers among you, who will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing swift destruction upon themselves.
2 Peter 2:2 Many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of the truth will be maligned;
2 Peter 2:3 and in their greed they will exploit you with false words; their judgment from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep.
1 Corinthians 11:18 For, in the first place, when you come together as a church, I hear that divisions exist among you; and in part I believe it.
1 Corinthians 11:19 For there must also be factions among you, so that those who are approved may become evident among you.
Will we listen to the Word of God!
Revelation 2:18 “And to the angel of the church in Thyatira write: The Son of God, who has eyes like a flame of fire, and His feet are like burnished bronze, says this:
Revelation 2:19 ‘I know your deeds, and your love and faith and service and perseverance, and that your deeds of late are greater than at first.
For those swept about by this avalanche and tolerate her and her teachings!
Revelation 2:20 ‘But I have this against you, that you tolerate the woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, and she teaches and leads My bond-servants astray so that they commit acts of immorality and eat things sacrificed to idols.
Revelation 2:21 ‘I gave her time to repent, and she does not want to repent of her immorality.
Revelation 2:22 ‘Behold, I will throw her on a bed of sickness, and those who commit adultery with her into great tribulation, unless they repent of her deeds.
Revelation 2:23 ‘And I will kill her children with pestilence, and all the churches will know that I am He who searches the minds and hearts; and I will give to each one of you according to your deeds.
Will we be counted amongst those whom hold fast!
Revelation 2:24 ‘But I say to you, the rest who are in Thyatira, who do not hold this teaching, who have not known the deep things of Satan, as they call them–I place no other burden on you.
Revelation 2:25 ‘Nevertheless what you have, hold fast until I come.
Deception in the Church have many articles exposing the false teachings of the Emerging/Emergent “Church”.
Lighthouse Trails Research Projects have many articles exposing the false teachings of the Emerging/Emergent “Church”.
“While Rick Warren, Dan Kimball and Dr. Robert Webber and others may be excited about the ‘Emerging Church’ and the direction it is presently headed, I am concerned the ‘Emerging Church’ may actually be a re-emergence of what has already occurred in church history. If the pattern continues expect to see evangelical Protestants become more and more Roman Catholic.” — Roger Oakland, Understand the Times, Read Entire Article.
Emerging Church Quotes compiled by Sandy Simpson
Many articles exposing the false teachings of the Emerging/Emergent “Church”.
Understand the Times (Roger Oakland) >>>
The Berean Call (Dave Hunt) >>>
Moriel Ministries (Jacob Prasch) >>>
Are Ron Martoia, Stephan Joubert and Nelus Niemandt Experts in their Field? >>>
So Ron Martoia was invited to South Africa to speak at the Pierre van Ryneveldt NG Kerk on the 28th August 2009 on “Transforming Church the 2009 Way”. The speakers were: Ron Martoia, Stephan Joubert and Nelus Niemandt.
The topic that Ron Martoia spoke on was ‘Vertical Development and a Spirituality of Awareness’. The anticipation to hear this expert in the field of Transformational Architecture speak was overwhelming. What was Ron going to say that would be any different to Brian McLaren, Rob Bell, Scot McKnight, Shane Hipps, Leonard Sweet, Karen Armstrong, Phyllis Tickle and William Torbet et al?
Oh sorry, what did Nelus Niemandt speak about?
Nelus spoke about a bridge (only because Brian McLaren spoke about it once) and Stephan Joubert made the question session as short as possible to avoid any serious questioning.
Then Stephan Joubert made this comment on twitter
“weird to see how some show up at conferences only to find reasons to disagree with the speakers and nail them on websites. Why?” – 9:24 AM Aug 29th http://twitter.com/stephanjoubert/status/3627339939
In future, to make sure that you only have ‘like minded’ people attend your secret gatherings please add a notice, preferably in big print that says: “All welcome, but please leave your brains at the door’.
Why are all these ‘conferences’ held during the week when the general public or the church can’t attend? Oh wait I forgot, it’s a SECRET place. You don’t want your church members to attend as they might get the shock of their lives to hear the rubbish that is spoken against Jesus Christ – you know things like:
You are invited to “The Everything Must Change Tour” [Excerpts] Link to Article
The Berean Call
According to her resume, Capshaw works with Dr. Ron Martoia who “is a transformational architect . . . . His area of expertise is on the new and shifting …
A weekend with Brian McLaren and friends.
McLaren has joined forces with individuals such as Linnea NIlsen Capshaw. According to her resume, Capshaw works with Dr. Ron Martoia who “is a transformational architect . . . . His area of expertise is on the new and shifting landscape of church/cultural intersection, where he helps churches consider how they can shift their theological outlook which in turn will shift and adjust their ministry trajectory and cultural interface. . . . Ron is using his cultural intonation to help churches shift paradigms from the old Newtonian world to the Quantum world of the 21st century context
“In addition to monthly consultations, Ron currently facilitates a new experimental learning community model in Jackson, Michigan called Vortex. Meeting in an arts enclave with over 20 other artists, there are weekly facilitated conversations on everything from string theory and the origins of the universe to the insights of Aristotle on personal development, as well as theological discussions about world religions and global spiritual formation praxis. Vortex hosts immersive learning experiences as well as weekly yoga classes. This experiment hopes to be part of shaping a new learning container for 21st century spiritual and personal formation.”
Coming From the Lighthouse Newsletter
Emergent leaders? Paving the way to Apostasy!
“In emerging church leader, Scot McKnight’s book, The Real Mary: Why Evangelical Christians Can Embrace the Mother of Jesus, McKnight says that Protestant Christians are the only Christians who do not honor Mary. He recommends that Protestant churches all practice an “Honor Mary Day” (p. 144), saying she “leads us to a Jesus who brings redemption … To listen to Mary is to hear the message of Jesus’ death and resurrection as a mega-event whereby God established a new kind of power, a new kind of family, and a new kind of kingdom” (p. 145). McKnight describes this great event as a time when the world will come together and worship Mary.
Today, Christendom has become filled with leaders who have lost their way. If Christian leaders like David Jeremiah and Josh McDowell, who are now promoting emerging leaders, continue in their present direction, they will be responsible for countless lives losing their chances for hearing the true gospel, and these leaders will be helping pave the way for an interspiritual, mystical, apostate religion.”
Quote of his on Theopedia.
“I agree with the many who have commented that the Table is not designed for the pure, the righteous, or the perfect, but for the impure, for the unrighteous, and for the imperfect. I see no difference: if anyone is seeking God’s grace and God’s blessing through Jesus Christ, they should be welcomed to the Table of the Lord. The Table is for cracked Eikons, and only for cracked Eikons. The one thing clear from Jesus’ table fellowship is that his opponents wanted purity before fellowship, and Jesus created purity out of fellowship with him.”
Article On the Theological Front
Response To A Defender Of Richard Foster by James Sundquist, 12/04
Reiki, Thomas Merton and Richard Foster by Ray Yungen, From the Lighthouse, 11/07
Contemplative Prayer Or Terror? by Roger Oakland, Understanding The Times, 4/1/08
Richard Foster, a promoter of contemplative prayer is a student of Thomas Merton. In a previous program we documented that Merton learned his procedures for contemplative prayer from Buddhists and Hindus. So what about Foster? Does he also believe you can Christianize messages from demons?
More on Richard Foster: Lighthouse Trails Research Project
Brian McLaren Calls Hell and the Cross “False Advertising for God”
For more research on McLaren’s teachings and views, click here.
Brian McLaren Imagining A Different God by Ken Silva, 9/4/09
Today McLaren informs us that: “Sister Joan Chittister writes a provocative reflection on God and evolution, and on the God of evolution, here. (Thanks Mike Todd!) There are strong resonances between what Joan is saying and what my upcoming book explores. Most of us grew up learning about the God of Laws, the God who made sense in Sir Isaac Newton’s mechanistic universe. (Nothing expressed this contextualization better than the little booklet “Four Spiritual Laws,” which could have been called “Four Spiritual Mechanisms.”) Now, we are struggling to imagine a bigger God, a God who makes sense in the evolutionary universe of Darwin, Einstein, LeMaitre, Hubble, Heisenberg, and Kuhn …”
Brian McLaren: A Prime Example Of Diaprax by Sandy Simpson, 2/16/06
I have written in a previous article called The Emerging/Emergent Church – and their use of “Diaprax” briefly detailing the use of the Hegelian Dialectic and praxis (Diaprax) by New Apostolic and Emerging Church leaders. What I want to show in this article is a perfect example of Diaprax in the teachings of Brian McLaren, a main leader in the Emerging Church. If you want to read the entire transcript of “An New Kind Of Christian – Part 1”, a video teaching by Brian McLaren, you can access it here. When you watch, be aware of the intentional and perhaps even unintentional uses of brainwashing techniques. I will only quote certain parts of McLaren’s teachings in order to emphasize the use of Diaprax as well as other false teachings.
The concept of the Emerging Church, as advertised worldwide in books, the web and on TV by the likes of Brian Mclaren, Leonard Sweet, Richard Foster, Dan Kimball, Rick Warren, Ken Blanchard and a whole host of others, seeks to cater to the postmodern mindset while using diaprax to achieve its goals.
Christianity Defaced as Leader of Emergent Church Movement Embraces Mysticism by Richard Bennett, 3/06
Brian McLaren – Emerging, But Into What? by Lighthouse Trails A good page of articles on McLaren.
A New Vision For God’s Kingdom on Earth by Lighthouse Trails Research, 1/30/07
Emergent Delusion A Critique of Brian McLaren,
A Generous Orthodoxy, by Pastor Bob DeWaay
More on Brian McLaren:
By Tamara Hartzell
(author of Reimagining God)
“Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; and they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.” (2 Timothy 4:2-4)
Sadly, it has become quite obvious that the time has already come. Openly preferring the fables of man’s imagination to the doctrinal truth of God’s Word, today’s shifting Christianity is heaping to itself teachers to scratch its itching ears. People are choosing to be led in “a way that seemeth right unto a man” rather than in the way that is right unto God as set forth by God in the Word of God.
In Leonard Sweet’s 2009 book, So Beautiful: Divine Design for Life and the Church, which, sadly, is just as anti-truth, anti-God, anti-Christ as everything else that caters to today’s epidemic of itching ears, this “[r]enowned professor and theologian” —who has worked for “years as a mentor to pastors” and “is a frequent speaker at national and international conferences, state conventions, pastors’ schools, retreats” as well as “a consultant to many denominational leaders and agencies” —asks a question that effectively sums up the new way of thinking:
“What if we were to think connectness rather than correctness?”
“Reimagining” God – Volume 1 By Tamara Hartzell
“Reimagining” God: Turning the Light off to Look for “Truth” in the Corner of a Dark Round Room has been printed as two books, Volume 1 (consisting of Parts 1-5) and Volume 2 (consisting of Part 6), which present an in-depth look at the emerging new way of thinking. From Christianity to the New Age to science and everything in between, the new way of thinking is merging it all into a whole new faith of a whole new “God” of a whole new humanity and world. Everything is changing—for a reason. Many in today’s Christianity are succumbing to the darkness of this new way of thinking. Many in today’s Christianity are succumbing to the emerging faith of the Antichrist. Many in today’s Christianity will bow down to the image of the beast and take his mark. That’s right, in today’s Christianity. Satan’s emerging kingdom of his Antichrist is ready to burst forth in all its darkness in global opposition to God’s coming Kingdom of His Son. Where do you stand? This emerging kingdom of darkness will go down in bitter defeat taking far too many souls with it in today’s Christianity. Is your soul going to be one of them? How scriptural is your faith? Does your faith come from inside or outside the “box” of the Word of God? The mission is Oneness. The path is darkness. And the door to it all is “Yea, hath God said …?” Yea, God hath said. And it is these words that are being dispensed with that are the only thing that stands between us and the hordes of hell that are on a soul-destroying mission. The subject presented in this book is as eternally grave and serious as it gets.
Dr. George Wood, General Superintendent of the Assemblies of God denomination, is scheduled to share the platform with New Age sympathizer Leonard Sweet next year in Berlin, Germany at an event called Luther 2017. Dr. Wood was the subject of several Lighthouse Trails articles in 2013 for his promotion of contemplative teacher Ruth Haley Barton […]
Ding Dong, Ding Dong, Wake up Leonard Sweet!
by Sandy Simpson, 11/27/05
This article will expose Leonard Sweet as a postmodernist who apparently is so caught up in his postmodern paradigm shift that he is unable to think clearly at all, let alone teach.
Satan, The First Postmodernist by Sandy Simpson, 12/1/05
Leonard Sweet: Quantum Spirituality and a Christ Consciousness! by Lighthouse Trails
“The new focus is on unity — a world-wide oneness reflected in the growing union between the East and West. Leonard Sweet’s online book, Quantum Spirituality, sheds some revealing light of the envisioned global “church” for the 21st century. In his view, the offense of the cross has been replaced with a passion for interfaith peace and possibility-thinking. To illustrate this point, Dr. Sweet points to Thomas Merton, the popular Catholic author who popularized mysticism and died in Asia searching the depths of Tibetan Buddhism.” The Emerging Global Church by Berit Kjos
In a classic case of the dialectic process, Leonard Sweet has declared, “ …the old model of church is killing the West,” at a conference at Baylor University. Sweet continues to state, “in the midst of an ever-changing culture, and more specifically, postmodernism the church must become missional, relational and incarnational, rather than remain attractional, propositional and colonial.” In layman’s terms…the emergent way is in, the seeker-sensitive is out. Perhaps the seeker-sensitive way is the first step toward the emergent way, with the final destination for Rome ?
Frank Viola >>>
Lighthouse Trails is reposting the critique on that book written by our free-lance writer Philip Gray. Viola and Barna believe that book will help bring about a new reformation to the church. Unfortunately, the reformation the emergents are bringing about is not a reformation from God. This book is a perfect example of that.
By Philip Gray Free Lance Writer for Lighthouse Trails In Pagan Christianity, Frank Viola and George Barna tell readers “Reading this book takes courage.” We couldn’t agree more, but not for the same reasons that Viola and Barna warn their readers. They tell us that it takes courage, not because of what the books says but […]
In Pagan Christianity, Frank Viola and George Barna tell readers “Reading this book takes courage.” We couldn’t agree more, but not for the same reasons that Viola and Barna warn their readers. They tell us that it takes courage, not because of what the books says but because of what a Christian must do after he or she reads it (p. 253). We say it takes courage because of the misrepresentation the authors have given to Christianity and because the book is a smoke screen for the “new” spirituality.
Basically, according to Pagan Christianity, if you are a Christian and you have been participating in any of the following activities, you have been practicing paganism:
1. Meeting in a building for church
2. Listening to a sermon
3. Having a pastor
4. Paying that pastor a salary
5. Sunday School lessons
6. Sitting in a pew (or balcony)
7. Using a pulpit
8. Using some sort of order to the church service, which includes taking an offering, having communion, giving announcements, and singing songs of worship.
9. Dressing up for church
10. Having a choir
11. Altar call
12. Evangelized to save a soul
After reading this list, how did you rate on that? How many of these activities are you guilty of? Did you go to church last Sunday? Did you put on your best outfit? Did you listen to a choir sing? Did that neighbor you bring respond to an altar call to give his life to Jesus Christ? Did you sit and listen to your pastor teach or preach the Word? Well, according to Pagan Christianity, if you did, you are more like a pagan than a Christian. Of these activities, Barna and Viola say: “Such practices are foreign elements that God’s people picked up from their pagan neighbors” (p. xx).
The point of this review is not to defend all of these practices in and of themselves. The point is to show that this book is another subtle stab at traditional Christianity, a stab that attempts to make Christians feel guilty for just about everything they do that has to do with going to church . . . everything that is, that is external. This book has absolutely nothing to do with the heart condition of man, nothing to do with sin and repentance, but is merely a smoke screen to cover up the real issues that are plaguing the church today. For whether one dresses up for church or not, whether one gives a sermon or not, whether one sings or not, whether one gives an offering or not, and whether one sits in a pew or not, the issue that God looks at is the condition of the heart and not the outward appearances. One can sit in a pew and have evil intent in his heart; another can sit in a pew and be a godly humble man of God. It’s not the pew that makes him one or the other.
Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment. John 7:24
[F]or the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart. 1 Samuel 16:7
Pagan Christianitysays that “the great bulk of first-century practices have been removed from the Christian landscape.” The book tells readers that “such practices are presently being restored on a small scale by those daring souls who have taken the terrifying step of leaving the safe camp of institutional Christianity” (p. xviii). But the book never really tells us what those practices are, except to continually say it is something spectacular that excludes the above activities andincludes small groups of people who stand around in circles, embracing, and sharing with one another their various thoughts, feelings, songs, prayers, and ideas – according to Viola and Barna, that is what makes a person a good New Testament Christian.
While there is certainly nothing wrong, in and of itself, for a group of people to stand in a circle and share with one another, it is not a guarantee that the group of people will be abiding in God’s will in their lives. And, in fact, if Viola’s and Barna’s recipe for proper Christian living is acted upon, that group of people in the circle is probably going to be in trouble because rather than having the Word of God taught to them or preached to them by those who are called into the office of teacher or pastor, they will be “dialoguing” with one another, asking a lot of questions, and never coming up with any answers (because the postmodern isn’t supposed to have any actual answers – having answers offends).
What is the real agenda of Pagan Christianity? Well, this much we can say, it sure isn’t to warn believers against true pagan practices and beliefs such as eastern-style meditation, walking through labyrinths, doing yoga, focusing on the breath, rejecting the atonement, and so forth. In a day when spiritual deception is at an all time high, when growing numbers of Christian leaders, churches, schools, and organizations are falling into the trap of practicing, promoting, and embracing mysticism and other New Age practices (disguised with Christian terminology, by the way), it hardly seems appropriate and wise to tell Christians to stop sitting in pews, stop having sermons (and pastors for that matter), stop meeting in buildings, end all Sunday School lessons, and by all means stop dressing up on Sundays.
On December 7th, author Frank Viola reposted an interview he did with co-author George Barna on their book Pagan
By Philip Gray Free Lance Writer for Lighthouse Trails In Pagan Christianity, Frank Viola and George Barna tell readers “Reading this book takes courage.” We couldn’t agree more, but not for the same reasons that Viola and Barna warn their readers. They tell us that it takes courage, not because of what the books says […]
Shibboleth by Jamie Smith
Learn To Love Jesus Christ! By Rick Warren, Ladies Home Journal.Refutation by Sandy Simpson
Warren-Driven or Bible-Obedient?
By Sandy Simpson
Purpose Driven Life – one of the major avenues through which contemplative spirituality is entering the church
The Bible study my friend attended was really a Purpose Driven Life study group. The Purpose Driven Life book they were studying referenced Bible passages that sounded off base. He was told that if he was going to attend the study, he would have to leave his Bible at home, because the issues he brought up were disruptive to the group. He chose to quit instead.
Purpose Driven Life – one of the major avenues through which contemplative spirituality is entering the church
The Emerging Church emerging, but not with the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Willow Creek – Bill Hybels church another major influence in bringing contemplative/emerging into the church
Christian Seminaries & Colleges—leading our future pastors and Christian leaders into the new spirituality
Christian Publishers —succumbing to the temptation to publish books promoting contemplative and emerging spirituality
The Spiritual Formation Movement —another way of saying contemplative spirituality
Mystical Rituals —labyrinths, contemplative prayer, lectio divina, breath prayer, yoga, Taize and other rituals
The Shack —William Paul Young’s best-selling novel is a bridge to the new spirituality
For more Related Articles on the PurPose Driven Movement,
Rick Warren’s Bob DeWaay exposes this fatal flaw in his new book Redefining Christianity.
“Nuwe Drome vir Nuwe Werklikhede” (new dreams for new realities)
Quote from: Nuwe drome vir nuwe Werklikhede, Nelus Niemandt, Page 81
This is an example of activities on This Website which he condones!
Mark Baker talks to Tony Jones about Atonement
Comment on Jones’s position :
Take away the cross….take away Jesus. Are you prepared to do that????
The way into the Kingdom is THROUGH THE CROSS!!!
Quotes from “Nuwe Drome vir Nuwe Werklikhede”
“EMERGENT IS . . . …Emergent is a growing generative friendship among mission! Christian leaders seeking to love our world in the Spirit of Jesus Christ. Our dream is to join in the activity of God in the world wherever we are able, so that God’s dreams for our world come true. In the process, the world can be healed and changed, and so can we.” Nuwe drome vir nuwe Werklikhede, Nelus Niemandt, Page 81
“I have been told that I need to believe in Jesus. Which is a good thing. But what I am learning is that Jesus believes in me. I have been told that I need to have faith in God. Which is a good thing. But what I am learning is that God has faith in me. The Rabbi thinks we can be like him.”
– Rob Bell, Nuwe drome vir nuwe Werklikhede, Nelus Niemandt,Page 78
“The greatest enemy to the movement of Jesus Christ is Christianity.”
– Erwin Raphael McManus
Nuwe drome vir nuwe Werklikhede, Nelus Niemandt,Page 13
Christian Chaos – Thomas Bandy, 1999
“The real world is a world of chaos. Culture is changing so quickly, with such diversity, in so many simultaneous directions, and using so many learning methods, that church groups organized around traditional principles can’t keep up”
“Chaos connects our everyday experiences to the laws of nature by revealing the subtle relationships between simplicity and complexity and between ordeliness and randomness” – Ziauddin Sardar en Iwona Abrams in Introducing Chaos.
Nuwe drome vir nuwe Werklikhede, Nelus Niemandt,Page 28
“Die klassieke Christendom waarin die sakramentele en misterieuse ‘n groter rol speel, beleef die teenwoordigheid van god nie as afhanklik van woorde en gedagtes nie. Dit maak dat hulle makliker kan rus in die onsigbare werklikheid van God se hier-wees.”
– Willem Nicol
Nuwe drome vir nuwe Werklikhede, Nelus Niemandt,Page 31
Lees ’n boek, Mission Mover – Beyond Education for Church Leadership – Thomas Bandy, 2004
“Christian modernity has shaped itself around the theological categories and issues of the Reformation; postmodern experience is too much like that of earliest times”
Nuwe drome vir nuwe Werklikhede, Nelus Niemandt,Page 40
“Dit gebeur baiekeer dat ‘n kerk se teologiese opleiding die grootste rede vir ‘n kerk se oneffektiwiteit is.” — Christian Schwartz
Nuwe drome vir nuwe Werklikhede, Nelus Niemandt,Page 40
“A sea change of transitions and transformations is birthing a whole new world and a whole new set of ways of making our way in the world.”
– Leonard Sweet in Soul Tsunami
Nuwe drome vir nuwe Werklikhede, Nelus Niemandt,Page 58
Stephan Joubert writes the introduction of Nelus Niemandt’s book and his remarksspeak for it self!
“My kop is geswaai
My belewing van hierdie boek“
“Nelus Niemandt is een van die invloedrykste denkers en missionêre Suid-Afrikaanse teoloë aan die begin van millennium drie. Sy insigte in ingewikkelde sosio-religieuse vraagstukke is asemrowend, sy nederigheid aansteeklik en sy vermoë om eietydse kontekste en Bybelse kontekste op verstaanbare maniere aan mekaar te knoop, sonder weerga. Daarom dat ek nie kon wag om hierdie boek te lees nie. Wat ‘n absolute juweel. Nuwe drome vir nuwe werklikhede is kop-oopmaak materiaal. Dis propvol wêreldverskuiwende woorde!
Nelus se verstaan van “Christenheid” en die bedreiging wat dit inhou vir die evangelie, saam met ‘n indringende profiel van die post-modernisme en huidige kerklike gestaltes het my ure se genoegdoening verskaf. Nelus vra egter nie net kritiese vrae terwyl hy uitgediende kerklike maskers op meesterlike wyse rondom ons almal afhaal nie. Hy praat juis hooptaal deur nege vars nuwe geloofspraktyke vir ontluikende kerke op ons etenstafel neer te sit. Ewe aangrypend, oog-oopmakend en uitdagend is sy insigte in missionêre gemeentes in die laaste hoofstuk van die bock.
Nuwe drome vir nuwe werklikhede is sonder twyfel die belangrikste boek op die Suid-Afrikaanse kerklike toneel oor die afgelope klompie jare. Dit is horisonverskuiwend en kontekstueel. Dit is deurdag, simpatiek, ontblotend, gevaarlik, maar altyd goeie medisyne! Terselfdertyd bied hierdie boek fantastiese hulpmiddels tot eksperimentering vir alle oopkop, saamdinkende gelowiges, met stylvolle visuele toepassings en roerende verhale oor ontluikende kerke.
Nuwe drome vir nuwe werklikhede het my kop van voor af geswaai. Dit is goed, groot en groots! Nelus het goed daarin geslaag om die insigte van die mees invloedryke eietydse denkers oor kerkwees in homself te internaliseer en op vars maniere te verwoord! Hiermee saam het hy ‘n klompie radikale nuwe insigte op ons elkeen se kerklike voorstoep kom neersit. Lees dit … en droom saam oor die kerk van die Here in die nuwe werklikhede wat voor ons staan.”
Taken from “Nuwe Drome vir Nuwe Werklikhede” by Nelus Niemandt
When we asked Stephan about his position regarding the Emerging Church and his introduction in Nelus Niemandt’s book, he replied with the following via e-Mail:
Beskou jy jouself as ‘n behoudende teoloog? Indien wel, behoort dit jou en mense om jou te bekommer dat jy Nelus se boek so hoog aanskryf, terwyl hy duidelik die “Emergent Church” propageer…
Kommentaar sal waardeer word…
“Dankie vir die skrywe.
Weet jy, my werk is oop vir almal om te lees en te evalueer. Elke dag skryf ek ‘n stukkie in Beeld en elke aand doen ek ‘n oordenking op RSG. Die boeke wat ek skryf en die materiaal op ekerk plaas my teologie in die helder lig van almal om dit in die lig te beoordeel. Oor my eie behoudendheid kan jy dus self besluit in die lig van Matteus 7 wat noem dat ons aan ons vrugte geken word.
Oor Nelus – hy is my vriend. Ek ken sy hart. En sy liefde vir onse Heer. Wat my meer bekommer, is dat die persoon wat teen emerging churches is in daardie seminuaar kennelik nog nie een enkele boek gelees het nie, en nie ‘n idéé het wie of wat dit is nie. En dat hy Matteus 18 grensloos oortree deur nog met Nelus, nog met my te praat. Is dit nie wat mens propaganda noem nie?
- The issue about RSG and their view on Christianity and the Bible is debatable…
- Ironically he mentions the fruit in Matt 7, but in the context, the first thing that Scripture touches on is to “beware of the false prophets…”
When discerning the Emergent Church they are rather confusingly handing out snakes as if fish in the context of Matt 7!
- He goes on to say “Oor Nelus – hy is my vriend. Ek ken sy hart. En sy liefde vir onse Heer”.
One should question and also be concerned if any person for that matter, let alone a pastor/minister says something like the above…
What does the Bible say?
Jer 17:9-10 (9) “The heart is more deceitful than all else And is desperately sick; Who can understand it? (10) “I, the LORD, search the heart, I test the mind, Even to give to each man according to his ways, According to the results of his deeds.
I am afraid, Stephan Joubert has not passed the test and according to Matt 7 v 15 is possibly a wolf in sheep’s clothing or he is deceived…
- Please read the The true context of Matthew 18
Stephan Joubert se assosiasie met Ron Martoia
Transkripsie van prof Stephan Joubert se reaksie op die WTL seminaar reklamemateriaal
The social gospel which is being repainted by Emergent Hollow Men like Rob Bell.
Velvet Elvis by Rob Bell – Reviewed by Bob DeWaay.
The Emergent Church– A new wave of evangelical identity
Weaning Evangelicals Off the Word – Part 3 | thebereancall.org
Awana News | thebereancall.org
The Shameful Social Gospel | thebereancall.org
Desmond Tutu and Emerging Church leaders Doug Pagitt and Rob Bell. …
TBC Today | thebereancall.org
More on Rob Bell:
“A Whole New Species of Church Is Emerging” according to him.
More on Thomas Bandy:
According to Tom Bandy, “a whole new species of church is emerging.” This emerging church is “not a machine”–“preoccupied with theological purity, ideological correctness, and behavioral conformity”–but “an organism.” This “organism” “worships differently, thinks differently, and depends on an entirely different kind of leadership.”9 This “new species of church” is the “Spiritual Redwood” growing in the midst of the diverse, cultural “forest” (GSR; p. 21).
Click here for endnotes and to read this entire chapter from In the Name of Purpose.
More on Bob Buford:
Ken Blanchard: Leading like Jesus or being managed by Other Forces?
Eckhart, Thomas Merton, Martin Buber, Richard Foster, Henri Nouwen, Basil Pennington and several others, all of whom promote a panentheistic, New Age view of God.
More on Martin Buber
One can only wonder what Tony Campolo means by some of his radical statements he has made and the positions he takes. Some call him a prophet…
More on Tony Campolo:
The Global Transformation of Redeeming Cultures
Chuck Colson holds to a modified teaching of reconstructionism and modern day dominionism to reform the culture, by taking the culture back:
More on Chuck Colson
More on Mark Driscoll
Lighthouse Trails Research Project
Schuller Planted, Hybels Watered, Warren (Peter Drucker) Gives the Increase by Orrel Steinkamp
More on Peter Drucker
Lighthouse Trails Research Project
Rick Warren Connections
Mount Vernon Nazarene University Bringing Contemplative/Emergent Speakers
More on Eddie Gibbs
Emerging church leader Tony Jones’ March 2008 release, The New Christians: Dispatches from the Emergent Frontier,may not come as a shock to those who have already read Jones’ books, An Emergent Manifesto of Hope and The Sacred Way. But it does provide further insights into the true nature of the emerging church. In The Sacred Way, Jones openly acknowledges hisaffinity with mysticism. With chapters on labyrinths, stations of the cross, the silence, centering (mantric) prayer, and more,
Jones’ leaves no doubt that he embraces eastern-style mystical prayer practices. In An Emergent Manifesto of Hope, he takes it to the next level. The thesis of that book could be described as:
The Kingdom of God is already here on earth, includes all people, all faiths, and in fact is in all people and all of creation and can be felt or realized through mysticism which connects everything together as ONE.
Tony Jones: Leading the Youth Toward Mystical Spirituality
Emergent Manifesto of Hope is the new release from Emersion, a publishing partnership between Baker Books and Emergent Village. The book, edited and compiled by emergent leaders Tony Jones and Doug Pagitt, is a collection of essays by various emerging church leaders. Pagitt says the book “provides a rare glimpse inside the emerging church.” This “rare glimpse” actually lays out the agenda of the movement, and in essence Emergent Manifesto is the emerging church’s coming out of the closet tribute.a
More on Tony Jones:
ore on Dan Kimball:
Dan Kimball, who wrote the article further writes “It was joy to see so many …Dan Kimball pastors Graceland, a postmodern worship service at Santa Cruz …
Dan Kimball : Lectio Divina and the Silence
“We have neglected so many of the disciplines of the historical church [Desert Fathers], including weekly fasting, practicing the silence, and lectio divina.”—Dan Kimball, The Emerging Church, page. 223
More on Dan Kimball:
Lighthouse Trails Research Project
Thomas Keating Articles on Ecumenism and interfaith “unity”
“There are already a number of Christians who are practicing the various types of contemplative prayer promoted by Richard Foster, Thomas Merton, Thomas Keating, and others. A good portion is being promoted through the Catholic contemplative prayer movement. Many of these same people are open to or already doing labyrinth walks as a meditative practice.”
Let Us Reason Ministries
More on Thomas Keating:
Lighthouse Trails Research Project
The Barbarian Way
Others Who Have Endorsed Erwin McManus’ Books – Rick Warren, Leonard Sweet,John Ortberg
This book has a new apostolic and Dominionist view
From Community Connections, Mike Oppenheimer, Let Us Reason Ministries
More on Thomas Merton:
More on Donald Miller:
More on Henri Nouwen:
Universalism in the World has Permeated the Church by Sandy Simpson
Emergent Delusion A Critique of Brian McLaren, A Generous Orthodoxy by Pastor Bob DeWaay
More on Doug Pagitt:
Robert Webber The Emergent Church- A new wave of evangelical identity by Pastor Steven W. Cornell
More on Robert Webber:
Bishop John Shelby Spong
The Bishop who was not
John Shelby Spong was born in Charlotte, North Carolina in 1931. John went to the public schools of Charlotte North Carolina and in the 1940s during his junior and senior years of school, he took two classes in the Bible. By age 12, he was given a King James Bible as a Christmas present by his mother after his father died. His mom is described as “a woman of a simple faith; no critical problems ever bothered her understanding of God” (Rescuing the Bible from Fundamentalism, p. 14). He read the bible religiously each day. The bible became his source of life and states he was able to quote the scriptures on salvation efficiently.
Spong was a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1952 and received his Master of Divinity degree in 1955 from the Protestant Episcopal Theological Seminary in Virginia. Both the seminary and St. Paul’s College have both conferred on him honorary Doctor of Divinity degrees. He had served as rector of St. Joseph’s Church in Durham, North Carolina from 1955 to 1957. Rector of Calvary Parish, Tarboro, North Carolina from 1957 to 1965. Rector of St. John’s Church in Lynchburg, Virginia from 1965 to 1969. Rector of St. Paul’s Church in Richmond, Virginia from 1969 to 1976. In 1973 he was elected by General Convention to a six-year term on the Executive Council, the governing body of the Episcopal Church, just under the General Convention. He was consecrated bishop on June 12, 1976. In 1986, under Bishop Edmond Browning, he was appointed to the Standing Commission on Human Affairs and Health. Spong has been the Episcopal bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Newark New Jersey since 1979. Starting in January 2000 he will retire and begin teaching at Harvard.
Bishop Spong’s writings and teachings are on the authority of the Bible, God, History, the Virgin Birth, the resurrection of Jesus, culture, sexuality, and sin. However he is not writing an apologetic for the faith, he is criticizing it, ALL of it. His position is more than just challenging the Scripture, it is anti-biblical and antichrist. He has written several books that state that Jesus was not born of a virgin and another that denies that Jesus was actually raised from the dead, just about anything in scripture has become his target. He has campaigned for same sex marriages and the ordination of practicing homosexuals. He has lobbied for abortion rights on the premise of freedom from abortion restrictions, which are oppressive to women.
For those on his side he is admired and praised as a brilliant writer and speaker, bravely campaigning for reformation and a new morality in the Church. In his book In Living in Sin? 1988, A Bishop Rethinks Human Sexuality, Spong justified homosexuality,fornication. He has fervently promoted sexual relations outside of marriage for both heterosexuals and homosexuals, maintaining that “sex outside of marriage can be holy and life-giving in some circumstances.” He has developed a marriage like ceremony to “recognize and bless” gay couples in Episcopal Churches. Spong has ordained homosexuals to the ministry and wants all the church to do the same.
Spong speaks with a man given authority on this and other matters. But in fact when one reads how he interprets the scripture they can only sympathize with a man with no direction. The real problem is his gangrene being spread to others. Spong is not gun shy to the public, he has appeared on The Phil Donahue Show, The Tom Snyder Show The Oprah Winfrey Show, Good Morning America, The Today Show, Firing Line with Wm. Buckley a few times, Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher on 5 occasions, The O’Reilly Factor with Bill O’Reilly twice, Nightline , CNN, and even the apologetic program – The John Ankerberg Show.
In 1988 Spongs first wife died and he states “people all over the Dioscese prayed for her because I was well known. I wondered if the garbage collector in downtown Newark had a wife who had cancer who died and people didn’t pray for her would she die quicker, or would she die more painfully and I decided if that’s the way this world works I don’t want to believe in that kind of God.” (Dec 27,99 Politically Incorrect Bill Mahr) Spongs mistake is interpreting God by his experience of the way the world is. Surely any Christian would pray for anyone from any walk of life, but it would be Gods prerogative to answering the prayer.
A NEW Reformation
Spong is calling for a new reformation. Which he claims will be far more reaching than the Reformation of the 16th century. This in no way should be confused with the one by Martin Luther, since he wants to undo everything Luther tried to reform, and more. “It will not be concerned about authority, ecclesiastical polity, valid ordinations and valid sacraments. It will be rather a Reformation that will examine the very nature of the Christian faith itself.”
“Reformation must also be willing to bear the attack of the threatened religious establishment”… Christianity is doomed for the anti-intellectual voices of the religious right today will never revive the Christian faith for that growing majority of those who have given up on organized religion. The choice before the Church is so clear to me. It is either a radical Reformation or a slow but inevitable death.” ( Renewing the call for Reformation)
But it is Spong who is actually promoting death because his reformation takes people away from the Scriptures as infallible, inerrant and life giving.”I will post my theses on the Internet and send copies with invitations to debate them to the recognized Christian leaders of the world. My theses are far smaller in number than were those of Martin Luther, but they are far more threatening theologically.” Many have been outspoken against his restructuring. Spong’s response to his detractors and fundamentalist foes is ” Certainly Martin Luther’s life was at risk when he nailed his 95 Theses to the door of the church in Wittenberg in 1517. Every religious reformer before and since has confronted the same hysterical fear.”Spong puts himself in the same class as Luther, when in fact he does not hold a candle to him.
Its not that Spong does not understand the Scriptures in light of the traditional Christian view, he just disbelieves it. “The bedrock of the Christian experience is captured in the assertion that the Holy God was present in and met through the life of Jesus. That experience was at first not explained, it was simply stated. Paul did it best when he wrote, “God was in Christ, reconciling the world.”…” various explanations began to develop based on the way God was perceived in the 1st century as a supernatural being dwelling beyond the sky, who invaded human history to accomplish the divine will. If God was in Christ, then an explanation had to be devised about how this God above had entered the world in Jesus and how this God in Jesus returned to heaven when the work of redemption was complete. The story of the virgin birth was designed to achieve the divine entry. The story of the cosmic ascension provided the means of departure.
He goes on to take the stand “The virgin birth tradition, however, assumed an ancient view of reproduction which believed that the newborn lived in the sperm of the male who simply planted it into the womb of the female. So to proclaim the divine origin of a person, one simply replaced the human father with a divine agent. It was not necessary to replace the mother since she was believed to add nothing to the new life. A virgin birth was therefore a rather sexist male misunderstanding of procreation.”
“Christianity so clearly stands today in need of a Reformation that will recast the Christ experience in radically different ways from those of our Christian past. If God was in Christ, as I deeply believe, then a new way must be found to make sense of that incarnate presence. … The idolatry of ancient and outmoded explanations must be broken open or we stand to lose the wonder that makes the Christ so radically important.”
Spong misses the point of theology being organic, that all the doctrines are interconnected with each other. If there is no virgin birth than God took upon himself a sinful nature which would make him in many respects no different than you or I. If we take what he says at face value, what would make Christ any more important than Buddha or Mohammed or any other religious teacher. How are we to believe anything in the bible? His position of the bibles stories being killed by its literal interpretation is nonsense. Those who were eyewitnesses and the next generation knew what took place and they certainly believed in its literal meaning. They all believed Christ had a real resurrection, Christianity would have ended in one fell swoop if they produced a literal body that was dead.
” … I am a Christian and I am not willing to assume that there is no way other than the way of yesterday to process the eternal Christ experience.”
What kind of a Christian challenges what Gods prophets and what Christ said that was recorded by his holy apostles. What Spong is doing is apostatizing and wants others to join his rebellion. There is only one way, because Christ said so and he should know. If the choice is between the Biblical record or Spong what rationale would there be to discard all of Church history for his new opinions. I’m not sure what experience Spong is talking about, but without Christ’s own words of truth it is impossible to REALLY experience the one it is written about.
His theology at times is laughable in the least and can be at times quite dangerous if given a platform. But in this age of toleration it is not surprising that one such as Spong can be a keynote speaker at church’s and Universities.
“Every image of God is mythological,” Spong affirmed. He said the resurrection and virgin birth of Jesus did not literally happen, but were just “interpreted” that way. Likewise, the disciple Judas and Jesus’ earthly father, Joseph, were fictional characters whom the early church created. Spong called the Ten Commandments “immoral” because they “define women as property.” (AFA Journal, 2112/96 author Mark Tooley, on “A homosexuality symposium at Foundry United Methodist Church in Washington, D.C.)
Spong tells us that it us wrong for Christians to try to convert Muslims or Buddhists to the Christian faith. To further his campaign of reformation, Spong clearly thinks it is right to change the central message of the Christian Faith.
As he so bluntly states “The view of the cross as the sacrifice for the sins of the world is a barbarian idea based on primitive concepts of God and must be dismissed.”(this is also the new age view of mocking Gods way of bringing man back into a relationship with him)
Spong seems to believe that only thinking people and Christians will discover what he has. “The words so central to Christian self-understanding, like “Jesus died for my sins,” or “Jesus paid the price of sin on the cross of Calvary,” or “I have been saved by the blood of Christ,”…are nothing short of ludicrous when we recognize what they mean. They assume a literalness about various elements of the ancient Christian myth. His audience is what he terms “the vast number of people who have given up on those beliefs because they are simply too narrow…they do not make sense in the world in which we live.” Human life was not just a little lower than the angels – it’s just a little higher than the higher mammals, the apes and the baboons. We’ve had to emerge from evolutionary history. We weren’t created perfect and then fell into sin…..There is no perfect Creation. There is no perfect humanity – we are evolving constantly.”( COMPASS INTERVIEW WITH BISHOP JOHN SHELBY SPONG. Dec. 25th, 1997 )
He holds in contempt the idea of original sin as well as being sinners.” as we called it, that human beings stained by this sin were exiled permanently from God’s presence. Unable to save themselves, the myth continued, these human beings stood condemned before the throne of grace, crying out for a savior to rescue them from their self-inflicted wounds.” It becomes obvious that Spong has not contemplated what God calls sin to understand why we all share this natural state of humanity. Was Paul wrong when he echoed Jesus Rom 5:8But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”1 Tim 1:15This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief.”
Some years ago Thomas Harris wrote a book I’m ok your ok in that book he said if you approach anybody from the vanish point of saying I’m OK and your not OK and your not going to be OK until you get to be like me, your being hostile… I don’t believe you can preach the love of God with hostility, save my life, I don’t believe that.” (Dec. 27,99 Politically Incorrect Bill Mahr)
But if you don’t take this literally then you need to do nothing to change. If we take Spong’s advice into the real world, you couldn’t go to a doctor if your sick. What if he discovered you had cancer and depended on your doctor to tell you the truth. What if he said your as healthy as he is I’m OK your OK. That is not truthful and neither is it love. What Spong misses in his philosophy is that Jesus who was God came to bring the truth. Mark 2:17When Jesus heard it, He said to them, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance.” Spong thinks everyone is righteous, the bible says we are all sinners in need of a savior. Matt 9:13″But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy and not sacrifice.’ For I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance.” Spong would do well to do likewise.
Attacking Biblical Literalism
So what was it that changed this man to go 180 degrees in the other direction? Spong traces the death of his bible faith to his years as a student in a secular university. “My literalistic approach to the Bible died in late adolescence under the onslaught of a great secular state university” (Living in Sin, p. 95).
“While at theological seminary I yearned to get as deeply as possible into biblical studies. I was thrilled with the insights of higher criticism” (Living in Sin, p. 96). “When I became aware that neither the word virgin nor the concept of virginity appears in the Hebrew text of Isaiah that Matthew quoted to undergird his account of Jesus’ virgin birth, I became newly aware of the fragile nature of biblical fundamentalism. … `Almah’ never means `virgin’ in Hebrew. I had to face early on in my priestly career the startling possibility that the virgin tradition so deep in Christianity may well rest upon something as fragile as the weak reed of a mistranslation” (Rescuing the Bible, p. 16).
Spong finds himself with comrades like Rudolf Bultmann who claimed that it is impossible to believe in miracles.
“Am I suggesting that these stories of the virgin birth are not literally true? The answer is a simple and direct ‘Yes.’ Of course these narratives are not literally true. Stars do not wander, angels do not sing, virgins do not give birth,… The virgin birth tradition of the New Testament is not literally true. It should not be literally believed” (Rescuing the Bible, p. 215).
In Born of a Woman (1992), he promoted that Jesus was conceived by a Roman soldier rather than the Holy Spirit. In all probability Jesus was born in Nazareth in a very normal way either as the child of Mary and Joseph, or else he was an illegitimate child that Joseph validated by acknowledging him as Joseph’s son. All that can be stated definitely is that the echoes of the status of illegitimacy appear to be far stronger in the text than the suggestion that Jesus was Mary’s child by Joseph” (Born of A Woman, pp. 157,158). This is such an absurd assertion since the bible from Genesis through the NT attest to the fact of Mary being faithful, obedient and Joseph being upright
In one of his books the blunt and audacious Bishop John Shelby Spong reveals how interpreting the bible literally has been used to justify slavery and war, ban textbooks, deny the rights of gays and lesbians and subordinate women. He seems to blame all of our societal ills on a literal interpretation of literal Scriptural writings. If one looked at his position from a biblical perspective one would think he would be running as a candidate for the antichrist.
With each new book published, Spong has upped the ante, promoting more theological poison for people to ingest.
Spong is repelled by Gods justice, “Matthew also had a strange fascination with hell, gnashing of teeth, weeping and wailing, burning pits, and eternal punishment. … Hell is a favorite theme in the evangelistic preaching of the literalists, of course, where behavior control by means of reward and punishment is prominent” (Rescuing the Bible from Fundamentalism, p. 155). Matthew only records what Jesus said so to accuse Matthew of distortion is to say the same of Jesus. it is these audacious statements that makes this man who has a little knowledge dangerous
Recently Spong appeared on the TV program Politically Incorrect and stated “So somehow all of these imperialistic religious ideas that we try put on people are just very destructive ideas. The gospels didn’t get written for 40 -70 years after Jesus was crucified.”.. they are written in a language that Jesus never spoke they are written in Greek, so by the time we read them there 40-70 years after and there written in language he didn’t speak. Now I don’t know about you Bill, but I don’t believe anybody will quote me accurately 40-70 years after I died.”
First : Spong is wrong on when the NT Bible was written, he takes the position of the apostate Jesus seminar “scholars” that we do not have eyewitness accounts. The bible was written 20 years after Christ and Johns last book the Revelation in 90 Ad.. Most was written in the years 45-65 Ad . The writers claim to be eyewitness accounts in the gospels, if in fact they are not we should not believe any of it, because they are liars. The newest evidence shows a parchment of Matthew that is dated back to 60-65 AD. The greater majority of scholars that are linguistic experts all point to the writings before 70 Ad. when Jerusalem was invaded by the Roman armies. The 2nd point that needs to be addressed is Spong’s consistent attack on the bible where there is nothing left to believe. Not its history, dating, characters ethics, its meanings, its actual portrayal of the historical Jesus and who he claimed to be. What one is left with is to listen to Spong instead of Jesus. Which appears to be what he wants. For he doesn’t agree with anything Jesus said. This includes statements on love as well, for Jesus said if you love me you will continue in my word.. and not to stop the children from coming to him. (Dec. 27,1999 Politically Incorrect Bill Mahr)
Again on the TV program Politically Incorrect he stated “Some parts of it I ‘d hate to blame God for (of the bible) some of it is pretty awful, women are treated as property in great sections of the bible, even in the 10 commandments says you shall not covet your neighbors wife nor his ox nor his ass nor anything that is your neighbors… and you know the neighbor in that is a male, the ox the ass and the other are possessions are possessions. And I think anything that treats a woman as less than fully human is wrong.”
Here we find Spong plays to the audiences prejudices of equality and liberalism. He was exposed for his false statement as the only Christian on the program defended the bible by saying,” look at how Jesus Christ commanded man to treat his wife, you treat your wife like Christ loves the Church. Christ was servant to the church and we are suppose to be a servant to our wife.” What needs to be added is that it was the religious leaders that misused the scripture and Gods intention was never for man to have a wife as ownership or possessions. Christ liberated the women from the false religious control that was prevalent in his day. The commandments point on covetedness is that anything one has should not be desired by another.
At a symposium he stated “If a star led the Wise men to the baby Jesus, then why couldn’t King Herod find Him?” Bishop Spong asked a laughing audience,” ..he “dismissed the Jewish prophecies traditionally seen as foretelling the coming of Christ. “I don’t think Isaiah, Jeremiah or the Psalmist anticipated the life of Jesus of Nazareth,” said Spong. “People can’t predict future events. It’s a magical view of the Bible.”
An audience member protested, “I am gay, Jewish Christian, convicted by the biblical prophecies, and in my heart.” He asked the bishop, “Don’t the Hebrew scriptures point in the direction of Jesus?” Spong responded, “Jews might be safer if we took evangelical Christianity away. Converting Jews to Christianity is not on the radar screen.” (AFA Journal, 2112/96 author Mark Tooley, on “A homosexuality symposium at Foundry United Methodist Church in Washington, D.C.) Well there goes another of Paul’s statement out the window “the gospel to the Jew first.”
On the politically incorrect show in response to a Christians testimony of seeing a miraculous healing in his life he said, “I don’t ever want to stand in judgement upon anybody’s witness and experience, but I can only say God for me is so much bigger than my faith, my church, my world, my understanding of life. And I think I walk into the mystery of this God everyday but, for… God forbid I spend time telling people that what God is like, I don’t believe there is a soul that knows what God is like. I know only what I experience and I cannot universalize from that.” (Dec 27,1999 Politically Incorrect, Bill Mahr)
Yes, God is bigger then all of these, but this does not mean one cannot understand or know him. Here he states he won’t stand in judgement on someone but then he does exactly that! To unequivocally say know one knows what God is like is to deny the purpose Jesus came for. Just because he has not experienced this does not mean someone else has not. This is like the atheist’s argument of “I can’t see God or he has not done a miracle in front of me therefore he does not exist.” We may not know everything of our best friend or wife, but we do know something of them to have a working, sustainable relationship. It is the same with God.
Obviously Spong does not believe the bible which states I Jn 5:20 “And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us an understanding, that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life.”
He has stated the end of Jesus’ life a story had to be devised to enable the theistic God whom they believed they had met in him to return to the divine abode above the sky. The ascension story then explains where the theistic God lived in heaven. Because Copernicus and Galileo confronted us with a new version of cosmic reality No intelligent person now thinks ascending into the sky is the route to heaven. With our present knowledge of cosmology, such a journey would at best achieve an endless orbit, while at worst one would ultimately escape the limits of gravity and sink into the infinite depths of space. So the “literal story of the ascension no longer translates to space age people.”
“The ascension of Jesus was not about space travel or moon shots. It was not to be literalized in terms of a first-century cosmology. The Pentecost story did not mean that ignorant fishermen like Peter and Andrew suddenly were able to speak Chinese, German, or Swedish. To literalize the Lukan narrative would be to destroy it irrevocably” (Spong, Rescuing the Bible from Fundamentalism: A Bishop Rethinks the Meaning of Scripture, p. 184, 1991).
“Paul was not a universal scholar. He was not even a good biblical scholar. … Paul treated Adam as if he were as literal and historic a figure as Jesus of Nazareth had been (Rom. 5:14,18). No biblical scholar will march today under that banner…”
Spong twists the bible writers own stance to make it seem that if one does not agree with him they are ignorant. The truth is it is he that is extremely ignorant. He has the most dangerous ignorance, one who is completely closed minded to evidence and is haughty enough to tell anyone and everyone they are wrong without any historical proof, only his opinion. Jesus said Adam and eve were literal , so did Moses in the creation account.
“Paul cannot be taken literally. He did not write the Word of God” (Rescuing the Bible, pp. 104,105) How can anyone with any intelligence say this?
Not only does Spong not take Paul literally he does the same to the whole bible “If a religious system requires that a literal Bible be embraced, I must walk away from that system” (Rescuing the Bible, p. 107).
“Resurrection is an action of God. Jesus was raised into the meaning of God. It therefore cannot be a physical resuscitation occurring inside human history.” Spong is not just a liberal he is an atheist in disguise, one who hides behind a collar. This does not mean he will say he does not believe in God, he does. But it is a god of his own image, in fact he is reinventing Christianity. So why wear a collar and be called a bishop. In the first place it would be hard to get inside the church if he did not have some suitable means of appeal to old religion that he wants to dispense with. Spong will cut to the chase, and come right out and tells you that he does not believe the Bible literally. “I hold the Bible before my readers seeking boldly to free it from the clutches of a mindless literalism and, at the same time, presenting it as a dramatic and exciting document whose relevance for our day is both mighty and real.”
We might consider the hypothesis that Paul may have been a gay male. … I suggest the possibility that Paul was a homosexual … nothing else accounts for this data as well as the possibility that Paul was a gay male.” (Rescuing the Bible, pp. 116,117). His opinion is not entertained by any scholar worth his salt, nor has it been in Church history until the recent liberal movement infiltrated the Church.
Jesus Seminar (Marcus Borg) >>>
Who are They?
The Jesus Seminar first began there meeting in 1985 where they numbered two hundred; it has shrunk to about 40 participants. Their quest for authentic statements was resolved by voting- using different color beads. In the book The Five Gospels: The Search for the Authentic Words of Jesus they presented their final results of the words that Jesus said. Red indicates passages that “are considered by the Seminar to be close to what Jesus actually said.” Pink sayings “less certainly originated with Jesus.” Graypassages “are not his, though they contain ideas that are close to his own.” Black passages, which are the majority throughout the gospels, “have been embellished or created by his followers, or borrowed from common lore.” Some of their methodology that was used for identifying Jesus “authentic” statements were- a direct quote must be short and “punchy” (As if he did not speak for long periods of time). A thought must run against the social and religious grain of the day (Jesus did not disagree with everything said or done). Any prophecy or miracle was immediately deemed invalid (His whole ministry was accompanied by miracles and prophecy). The Jesus seminar clearly has an anti- supernatural bias, they cannot believe in Jesus or a God who created the world out of nothing. The reasoning is that this was all recorded prior to our scientific age. While there are some of their scholars who believe that Jesus actually did perform some miracles; it is dismissed as something mystical and beyond explanation. By holding to a “naturalistic” worldview Jesus is stripped of anything supernatural, and any statements that uphold His divinity. Therefore his followers came to their own conclusions completely isolated from anything He said or did. They make Jesus into a psychologist who relieved people of their fears, phobias, someone who made life’s burden of pain easier to live with. When it came to prayer only two words of the Lord’s Prayer were deemed authentic, “Our Father.”
Talk about straining a gnat and swallowing a camel! I guess I can’t quote that because it’s not in the Bible either!
They have tried to find what they call “a historical Jesus,” following in the footsteps of 19th century higher criticism. After six years of meetings they cannot say with any certainty that Jesus said anything recorded in any of the Gospels. This is scholarship? Instead of going into the historical accounts of the Bible the Jesus Seminar scholars have cast lots to determine whether what is attributed to Jesus in the Bible are his words or not. By the time they were done they were left with only about 18% of what they currently consider authentic statements of Jesus. I guess now we can vote not only for a political office but what God has said. Wasn’t that the devils line to Eve, He voted that God did not say they would die if they ate of the tree, He was very convincing. Their lot is cast as well.
They come to these conclusions because the gospels were not written by eyewitnesses but written well into the 2nd century.
The fact is that not all the liberal scholars side with their view. John A.T. Robertson, re-dates the New Testament documents much earlier than most modern liberal scholars. Robertson argued in Redating the New Testament that the entire New Testament could have been completed before 70 A.D., which keeps it in the period of the eyewitnesses.
One of the experts Jennings picked to interview was John Dominic Crossan, co-founder of the Jesus Seminar and a former Catholic priest. Crossan’s views as he concludes that of Jesus are that He never claimed deity and his followers later deified Him. He concludes that Jesus’ birth in Bethlehem, His burial and resurrection are “pure fiction” and “wishful thinking.” Is there anything left after this? The resurrection which He has also solved, by proposing that the body of Christ was eaten on the cross by scavenging animals. How absurd when the Romans were watching over him to make sure he was dead and watched Joseph of Arimethea take Jesus’ body away for burial. They even were sent to guard the tomb he was placed in. They rehash claims that have been part of “higher criticism” for over a century, they were refuted then and certainly do no better today, except for the naive. These are all natural assumptions of unspiritual men whose minds are darkened to God’s word.
The day after the Jennings program Crossan joined a moderator on the web to discuss the program.
He was asked why the program “did not include more `conservative’ scholars. Was Peter Jennings’ report one-sided?” Crossan answered, “we have always heard the other [conservative] side namely, that everything in the New Testament Bible that can be taken literally must be taken literally. So it was necessary to make a distinction between historical questions and theological questions, both of which are equally valid, but different.” Is this true? How many TV programs have interviewed those who hold the Christian faith in a true historical and Scriptural manner? Not only do they misrepresent the Bible but they revise what actually took place. He went on to state, “For example, if I was addressing very conservative scholars, I would ask them this very simple, basic question: Do you or do you not agree with the historical conclusion of the vast majority of contemporary scholars – that Matthew and Luke used as their primary source the Gospel of Mark? That, for example, is basic for me. In other words, as a believing Christian, I consider it that God inspires Matthew and Luke to copy and to change Mark for their new times and new places.”
Is what he is describing inspiration? He holds that Mark was first or stated by others a common source they all copied. They have concluded the date is much later than the time period of the apostles, (based on personal opinion and not historical evidence) so the writings cannot be trusted. However the evidence shows the Gospels should be dated early. We know that Paul was alive as recorded in the end of the Book of Acts. The apostle Paul died during the Nero’s persecution in 64 A.D. This means Acts must have been written prior to A.D. 64. We further know that Luke traveled with Paul and wrote his Gospel of Luke and the Book of Acts that began with the church at Pentecost (approximately 30-33 ad) and followed the life of two main apostles Paul and Peter. Luke wrote his gospel before Acts, which places the dates just where true scholars have stated 60-65 A.D.
W. F. Albright, one of the greatest Biblical archaeologist, states, “We can already say emphatically that there is no longer any solid basis for dating any book of the New Testament after a.d. 80, two full generations before the date between 130 and 150 given by the more radical New Testament critics of today.” (William F. Albright, Recent Discoveries in Bible Lands, New York, Funk and Wagnall’s, 1955, p. 136). B.B Warfield states, “If we compare the present state of the text of the New Testament with that of no matter what other ancient work, we must…declare it marvelously exact.” F.F. Bruce testifies to the accuracy of its historical details. The place names, the geography, the titles of the various public figures are all remarkable in their accuracy and could only have been produced by someone who genuinely was an eye witness of the events, or who had access to those who were.
The Jesus Seminar spearheads the view that is dubbed the “the Synoptic Problem.” This is found in the fact that the gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke have a number of very similar and some different accounts recorded. The assumption is that they either copied each other or from an unnamed, undiscovered text called “Q” (Q is for Quelle, the German word for “source”). The common relationship of the gospels find their origin in one document that has never been found, called “Q.” Many propose Mark’s gospel was first, and Matthew and Luke are rewritten versions of Mark. (John’s gospel is whole other story having 92% unique material). It makes more sense that Matthew was written to the Jews was first (His theme was Jesus the messiah the King of the Jews) since the gentiles were not being saved until years later (Acts 10) and Mark is written to the Gentiles (His theme was Jesus the Messiah- Servant, redeemer). The four Gospels comprise about 46 percent of the New Testament, so if one does damage to the eyewitness accounts the veracity of the rest falls down as well.
The Q theory is a recent development in New Testament studies, the main promoters today are liberals. If one does a comparison there are many sayings in Matthew and Luke that are NOT in Mark, nor in each other. Matthew and Luke have more to the Christ’s life story than Mark and sometimes vice versa, each added depth to the teaching of Jesus. They all covered different aspects of his life and present a greater depth together. They propose that the Q sayings are also to be found in the Gospel of Thomas. Thomas is supposed to be similar to what Q was. Luke begins his gospel record by stating his goal: “Inasmuch as many have undertaken to compile a narrative … it seemed good to me also … to write an orderly account for you.” Luke was aware of other written (and oral) sources based on eyewitnesses and he used some of these sources to compile his gospel. His concern was to take all the accurate information and put it together in a sequential order (Luke 1:1-4).
Sir William Ramsay, one of the greatest archaeologists who ever lived wrote of Luke the author of the gospel and the book of Acts stating, “Luke is a historian of the first rank; not merely are his statements of fact trustworthy, this author should, be placed along with the very greatest of historians. Luke’s history is unsurpassed in respect of its trustworthiness.”
No such historical testimony for the existence of a “Q” document it has ever been found. Neither is there a total agreement of what sayings should be in “Q.” The majority of historical evidence does not point to Mark (dictated by Peter) as being the first Gospel written.
The gospel of Thomas (called the fifth gospel) has been categorized as unmistakably Gnostic. It is later written and challenges the revealed record of the other gospels.When carefully examined alongside the other gospels and writings it hardly is recognizable as the Words of Christ. There are some similar and exact phrases, but there are others that are so far off that one can only conclude that someone took it upon themselves to add their own flair to it. Here are some examples:
Jesus said: If those who lead you say unto you: Behold, the Kingdom is in heaven, then the birds of the heaven will be before you. If they say unto you: It is in the sea, then the fish will be before you. But the Kingdom is within you, and it is outside of you. When you know yourselves, then shall you be known, and you shall know that you are the sons of the living Father. But if ye do not know yourselves, then you are in poverty, and you are poverty.
Jesus said: Blessed is the lion which the man shall eat, and the lion become man; and cursed is the man whom the lion shall eat, and the lion become man.
Jesus said to his disciples: Make a comparison to me, and tell me whom I am like. Simon Peter said to him: Thou art like a righteous angel. Matthew said to him: Thou art like a wise man of understanding. Thomas said to him: Master, my mouth will no wise suffer that I say whom thou art like. Jesus said: I am not thy master, because thou hast drunk, thou hast become drunk from the bubbling spring which I have measured out. And he took him, went aside, and spoke to him three words. Now when Thomas came to his companions, they asked him: What did Jesus say unto thee? Thomas said to them: If I tell you one of the words which he said to me, you will take up stones and throw them me; and a fire will come out of the stones and burn you up.
In the true Gospel of Mt. 16:16 Peter says the confession, “You are the Christ, the son of the living God.” In the Gospel of Thomas the living Jesus confesses that the disciples are Christ’s.
Jesus said to his disciples: “Make me a comparison; tell me what I am like.” Simon Peter said to him: ‘you are like a righteous angel.” Matthew said to him: ‘you are like a man who is a wise philosopher.” Thomas [represented as the true Gnostic] said to him: “Master, my mouth will not be capable of saying what you are like.” Jesus said [to Thomas]: “I am not your master, because you drank from the bubbling stream which I have measured out.”
Thomas comes to comprehend that he is the spiritual equal of Jesus, his identical twin brother, no less. Thomas is thus the true apostle whom every true Gnostic must follow. And he took him, went aside, and spoke to him three words. Now when Thomas came to his companions, they asked him: What did Jesus say unto thee? Thomas said to them: If I tell you one of the words which he said to me, you will take up stones and throw them me; and a fire will come out of the stones and burn you up.
Simon Peter said to them: “Let Mary go away from us, for women are not worthy of life.” Jesus said: “Lo, I shall lead her, so that I may make her a male, that she too may become a living spirit, resembling you males. For every woman who makes herself a male will enter the kingdom of heaven”
Jesus said: I am the light that is over them all. I am the All; the All has come forth from me, and the All has attained unto me. Cleave a (piece of) wood: I am there. Raise up the stone, an ye shall find me there.
Jesus said: The man aged in his days will not hesitate ask a little child of seven days about the place of life, and he shall live. For there are many first who shall be last, and they shall become a single one.
“Jesus said: No prophet is acceptable in his village; a physician does not heal those who know him.” This is not what he said, this is mix of two scriptures. What Jesus said was, “A prophet is not without honor except in his own country, among his own relatives, and in his own house.” (Mk.6:4)
Yes there are some similar words and phrases but a closer look will have one reject the authenticity of them. For the whole meaning does not coincide with the other 4 gospels teaching. And we should not forget that Jesus was often quoting the Old Testament to reaffirm His teaching and person. However, It is the gospel of Thomas they use as the criteria for all the other gospels. Despite the evidence that no early church pastors ever quoted from its pages.
These scholars intention is to deconstruct these myths so that the “real” Jesus may be seen (Robert W. Funk, Roy W. Hoover, and the Jesus Seminar, The Five Gospels: The Search for the Authentic Words of Jesus, p. 1-7).
Seminar member Dr. Marcus Borg of Oregon State University has stated of Jesus, “We’re making him a Buddha-like figure, not just another philosopher but a really big one.” This is supposed to be an improvement on the apostle’s view according to them. After all if He is God we might have to listen and obey what he says.
If one is left with only 18% of Jesus’ statements (their own choosing), this means Jesus never said 82% of the other sayings. That is a whole lot of living cut out! In addition they claim Jesus never warned of “wolves in sheep’s clothing” (Matthew 7:15). What a setup for their innocence. Ever hear of the story of little red riding hood, its quite applicable.
Leader of the Jesus Seminar Marcus Borg makes it clear “I would argue that the truth of Easter does not depend on whether there was an empty tomb, or whether anything happened to the body of Jesus. … I do not see the Christian tradition as exclusively true, or the Bible as the unique and infallible revelation of God. … It makes no historical sense to say, ‘Jesus was killed for the sins of the world.’ … I am one of those Christians who does not believe in the virgin birth, nor in the star of Bethlehem, nor in the journeys of the wisemen, nor in the shepherds coming to the manger, as facts of history” (Marcus Borg, Jesus Seminar, Bible Review, December 1992).
Well said, in other words all he has is the title of a Christian but does not believe what Christians believe or practiced. He has an empty profession, a said faith with no power. This is our modern scholars who know so much more than then the eyewitnesses.
Here are some more statements that reflect their scholarship said by the main representative of the Jesus seminar: Robert W. Funk, Architect and Founder of the Jesus Seminar, in a Keynote Address to the Jesus Seminar Fellows in the spring of 1994. Says that Jesus was “a secular sage who satirized the pious and championed the poor … Jesus was perhaps the first stand-up Jewish comic. Starting a new religion would have been the farthest thing from his mind” (Robert Funk).
New American Standard Bible; The Lockman Foundation
Lighthouse Trails Research Project
(David and Deborah Dombrowski)
Deception in the Church (Sandy Simpson)
Let us Reason (Mike Oppenheimer)
Understand the Times (Roger Oakland)
The Berean Call (Dave Hunt)
Moriel Ministries (Jacob Prasch)
Lifestyle C Christian Page
DVD; New Streams in our Theology (Sarel van der Merwe)
Additional information: Lifestyle C is based in Pretoria (Gauteng), South Africa – We can accommodate any client(s) for requested lifestyle sessions at a venue that is convenient for both parties. You can contact Danie Strydom for professional life coaching and alignment.