Thu, Mar 31st - 3:27PM
The Christian's Relationship To The World
"And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God."(Romans 12:2)
All too often modern Christians put culture and trends above Scripture, and submit to the indoctrination of the society in which they live and adapt to its cultural expectations and values. Many Christians readily accept an unscriptural or anti-biblical teaching or theory as truth because it is considered new or modern or is endorsed by the world and easily dismiss a Bible teaching as wrong or irrelevant if it is considered old-fashioned or unpopular. Many insist that the Holy Bible is not infallible or the final authority or that the Bible only applies to the religious (church-related) part of our lives and does not apply to our secular lives. The reasons that most professed Christians give for their beliefs and convictions demonstrate an adaptation to culture above Scripture. The teachings taught in most churches regarding what is true or false, moral or immoral, or proper or improper demonstrate an adaptation to culture above Scripture. Many churches teach that the Bible must be interpreted according to culture, thus giving self, feelings, sentiment, and the world an authority which they deny God. (Psalm 33:4,10-11; Proverbs 3:5-7; Jeremiah 6: 16,19; 8:8-9; I Corinthians 1:20; 2:5; Colossians 1:9; 2:8; II Timothy 2:14-15; 3:16) Many have adopted the belief or attitude that Satan rules the Earth. (Satan rules in the hearts of unbelievers, "the wicked world system," but God is the present ruler of the Earth and nothing in the Bible indicates that God abdicated His throne and turned His authority over to Satan.) Many teach that the Bible is only for Christians and has no relevance to society or unbelievers. (The Bible is God's message to all mankind and provides guidance on every area of human existence. Applying Bible teachings benefits both believers and unbelievers. The important difference is that for the unbeliever the Word of God is convicting and for the believer the Word of God is cleansing.) Many insist that it is wrong for a Christian (especially a preacher) to hold a public office or otherwise try to influence society for righteousness. (Daniel 2:48-49; Matthew 5:13-16; I Timothy 2:1-2; etc... In other words, the world should influence believers instead of the other way around. Biblical separation is godly distinctions, conduct, and relationships within society and not isolation from society or neutrality concerning politics or community affairs) Many adopt a Devil-May-Care attitude toward the society in which we live. (Psalm 119:53,136,158; I Timothy 2:1-4) Often those who claim liberty from within and are supposed to have internal dominion over sin through faith in Jesus Christ find their lives are out of control in the external world. (John 8:36; Romans 6:11)
This is the reverse of what Christians ought to be. Christians should not be dominated by history, trends, culture, or society; they should be shaping these according to God’s will. (II Corinthians 10:4-6; I John 5:4)
Thu, Mar 31st - 3:17PM
Discerning The Will Of God
"Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my father which is in heaven. Many will say unto me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many powerful works? And then I will profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity." (Matthew 7:21-23)
When the children of Israel turned to calf worship they claimed that the golden calf represented Jehovah and claimed to be worshipping Jehovah in a feast to Jehovah. This is just one example to show that claiming to worship the true God and being religious does not necessarily mean that someone is right with God or that his faith is actually directed to the true God. (Exodus 32:1-8)
It was not the will of God for the children of Israel to have a king, yet God consented to let them have a king and even chose kings. (Judges 8:23; I Samuel 8:5-10,18-22; 9:15-17; 12:12; etc.) This is just one example to show the fallacy of assuming that a goal, program, institution, or tradition is the will of God simply because it is or appears to be beneficial or spiritual, or merely because good things are accomplished.
Cyrus was used and anointed by God, and even referred to Jehovah as the God of heaven and acknowledged God's Providence, even though he was a pagan idolater who never converted to Yahwism. (Ezra 1:1-2; Isaiah 44:28-45:1) The Spirit of God was upon King Saul and he prophesied during the time when he was backslid and seeking to kill David. (I Samuel 19:23-24) Jehu was anointed and used by God, but he never left his idolatry (calf worship) or heeded the law of God. (II Kings 9:1-10; 10:29-31) These are just a few examples to show that being anointed and used by God does not necessarily mean that someone is right with God.
It is dangerous to put experience or appearance above the Word of God when discerning what is right or the will of God, especially when it comes to your relationship with God.
Tue, Mar 29th - 2:22PM
The Eli Syndrome
"Now Eli was very old, and heard all that his sons did unto all Israel; and how they lay with the women that assembled at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation." (I Samuel 2:22)
When Eli's sons were practicing vice, theft, and fornication, Eli mildly rebuked his sons but he did not oust them from office or otherwise hold them accountable, and through such negligence Eli shared the sins of his sons and was guilty of honoring his sons above God. (I Samuel 2: 27-30) The Eli Syndrome has infected many churches and is destroying Christian influence and soul winning power. Often people in church leadership and teaching positions who set a bad example or teach damnable heresies are not held accountable. Vice, sexual immorality, fraudulent business practices, and rebellious youths often go on unaddressed and unrebuked. Ministers and counselors often make a point of befriending and rewarding the unruly, the rebels, and the infidels while neglecting the dedicated believers. The rebellious, unruly, and incorrigible are often rewarded with activities and recreation in order to keep them, hoping that pacifying and pampering them will save them and expecting that we can somehow win competing against the world when it comes to fun and thrills while assuming that a little leaven will have no negative affect.
A censorious spirit is wrong and must be avoided. (Isaiah 29:20-21; Matthew 7:4) We must avoid being against so much that we are not for anything or become guilty of putting pet theories and preferences above God’s Word. (Romans 14:1,7-12; II Timothy 2:14-15) In dealing with the sins of others it is important to recognize one’s own humanness. (Galatians 6:1; Isaiah 42:19) God always wants to forgive more than we want to be forgiven, and we should reflect that attitude. (Psalm 103:8-14; Romans 5:8) For example, note in II Corinthians 12:21 that the main concern is not whether any church members have sinned but whether those who sinned have repented. But we must be careful to maintain a balance between compassion in reconciling people to the fold and that of overlooking unrepentant sin, and we must promote and reward the faithful. (I Corinthians 5:12; II Corinthians 13:2; I Timothy 5:20; I Peter 4:17)
When Christians Sin
Mon, Mar 28th - 5:31PM
US Costitution Versus Modern US Government
Consider a few examples of differences between the constitutional government established by the Founding Fathers and what we have now:
The Biblical view of man as a natural born sinner led the Founders to set up a system of government that does not depend upon the wisdom of mobs or give absolute power to one person, and sets limits on the power of civil government and requires accountability of public officials. The republican form of government (not a reference to a political party), representative government rooted in moral law, is based on Bible precedent. (Exodus 18: 21; Deuteronomy 1:13; 16:18) The Constitution only supports democracy in the sense of rule through elected representatives. Pure democracy was made unconstitutional because it is dangerous; a lynch mob is a good example of pure democracy in action. (Constitution Of The United States Of America, Article IV, Section 4) Now we have a majoritarian democracy (mob rule) representing the will of the majority that disregards the rights of the individual and entrusts charismatic personalities with unchecked power.
Due to the sinful nature of man and the corrupting effect of power it is necessary to establish safeguards to prevent the abuse of power. According to the Bible there are three kinds of government power: judicial, legislative, and executive. (Isaiah 33:22) The Founders separated government power into three branches of government so that the individual is protected from the tyranny that is inevitable with a concentration of power. The powers for each branch of government are limited and defined in the Constitution. A legislative power was established and made the most important to protect the rights of the individual to his own life, liberty, property, and Christian self-government. The Supreme Court is to interpret laws according to the Constitution and is accountable to the legislative branch: Federal Judges do not hold lifetime appointments; they are appointed to hold the office “during good behaviour” and are subject to impeachment. What do we have now? The balance of the powers is upset by the growing predominance of the presidency, the Supreme Court’s continual usurpation of the rights of the legislative branch, and the weakening of the legislative branch. The legislative branch routinely passes laws which encroach upon the right of the individual to his own life, liberty, and property as well as his right of self-government, presidential powers often bypass Congress and usurp legislative power through executive orders, and the Supreme Court often usurps legislative power and issues decrees which contradict the Constitution.
In order to prevent the Federal Government from becoming a centralized despotism the Founders established a constitutional government in which the States retain most powers while the powers of the Federal Government are defined and limited to those powers necessary for its function. What do we have now? The Federal Government steadily absorbs all of the political life, usurps State’s Rights and defrauds their sources of revenue, and the rights of the individual are often sacrificed for the sake of unity and to protect the Federal Government against insurrection.
In the Founder's discussions of the First Amendment the word "religion" was often used to mean a single denomination. The Founder's prohibited the federal Congress from establishing a single national denomination or ruling in religious matters through a state church ("establishment of religion"). The Founder's also opposed governmental separating of Bible principles and values from the public sphere, and they expected basic Bible principles and values to be present throughout society ("... nor prohibiting the free exercise thereof."). For over a century-and-a-half this was the only way in which the religion clause of the First Amendment was interpreted because that is what it says. Any system of beliefs and practices fits the definition of religion even without belief in the supernatural, including socialism and humanism, so that freedom from religion is impossible. Modern Federal restrictions against religious people and religious groups influencing government and government decisions, and Federal requirements that God, religion, and Scripture be kept out of government, violate the First Amendment.
America's Christian History
The Bible and Government
The Separation Of Church and State
By Vic Bilson
Citizens For A Constitutional Republic
Thu, Mar 24th - 1:39PM
Christian Worldview Versus Leftism
The Christian worldview sees God as the present ruler of the earth and human government as ordained of God to protect the rights of the people and punish criminals, while the pagan concept of man and government sees the individual as a mere servant of the state whose value is determined by his usefulness to the state and makes man (corporate man, the state) the standard of truth and absolute authority. Socialism is a modern version of ancient paganism.
How does this effect civil rights? In His special grace God saves sinners and in His common grace God uses human government to protect the good against evil, and when the Christian worldview is predominant individual freedom increases. For example, it was the Biblical concepts of God as sovereign and man as created by God in the image of God that led to the abolition of slavery and not the idea of man as ruler of the earth. On the other hand, the leftist definition of 'separation of church and state' ultimately calls for the overturn of laws prohibiting murder, rape, theft, polygamy, and slavery, since those laws were based on Scripture and were the direct result of Christians impacting culture. Various rights are specified in America's founding documents because they are taught in the Bible: Right to life (Exodus 20:13; Acts 17:25), liberty (II Corinthians 3:17), property/pursuit of happiness (Exodus 20:15; Ecclesiastes 5:18; Acts 5:3,4), freedom of religion (Joshua 24:15; I Kings 18:21; Acts 5:29), freedom of speech (Matthew 28:19,20; Mark 16:15; Acts 4:20), freedom of the press (Habakkuk 2:2), freedom of assembly (Hebrews 10:25), right to keep and bear arms (Luke 22:36), etc.. These rights are not spelled out, they are self-evident; the Bible makes it obvious that God wants people to have these rights.
How does this affect the view of liberty and property? Many have been deluded by leftist claims that property rights are separate from human rights and overlook the connection with the individual’s life and liberty. Webster’s 1828 Dictionary sheds much light on what property meant to those who specified property as a protected right in the US Constitution: “The exclusive right of possessing, enjoying and disposing of a thing; ownership. In the beginning of the world, the Creator gave to man dominion over the earth, over the fish of the sea and the fowls of the air, and over every living thing. This is the foundation of man's property in the earth and in all its productions. Prior occupancy of land and of wild animals gives to the possessor the property of them. The labor of inventing, making or producing anything constitutes one of the highest and most indefeasible titles to property. Property is also acquired by inheritance, by gift or by purchase. Property is sometimes held in common, yet each man's right to his share in common land or stock is exclusively his own. One man may have the property of the soil, and another the right of use, by prescription or by purchase.” The view of property and liberty held by a nation or an individual is determined by who is recognized as the ruler of the earth by that nation or individual. The Humanist worldview, which now dominates most public school curriculums, most modern scholarship, and Federal and State governments, sees man (corporate man, the state) as sovereign, does not recognize absolute principles or truths, sees Christian culture and Bible truths as old-fashioned, restrictive, and irrelevant, and means that the strongest men (or the government) dominate home, school, culture, and church. The view that Satan rules the earth, a view held by many modern Christians, sees Christians as isolated and Christian culture as a counter-culture, makes Christian culture and Christian influence irrelevant and insists that everything must go from bad to worse, limits Christian influence and responsibility to soul winning and church activities, and supports and adopts the Humanist worldview. The Christian worldview sees God as the present ruler of the earth and the Holy Bible as the final authority in all areas of human existence, sees Satan as a defeated foe, sees Christian culture as leavening all areas of life and blessing mankind, sees self-governing Christians as influencing and dominating home, school, culture, and church, sees Christians as commissioned to subdue the earth and build godly nations through evangelizing and discipleship, and expects reformation and blessings for a nation that is obedient to the Word of God.
Socialism is not always recognized or understood because of the facades and misconceptions. For example, many believe that fascists (e.g., Nazis) are right-wingers and fascism is a right-wing movement because they merely compare fascism to communism. This is similar to comparing a scalene triangle and an isosceles triangle without comparing any other shapes. If you merely compare the triangles to each other it is only possible to notice the differences, but if you compare both triangles to a square or a circle the similarities between the two triangles stand out. If we merely compare fascism and communism with each other, the superficial appearance of capitalism can make fascism appear to be right-wing, but if we compare fascism and communism to capitalism (the social system of free enterprise and limited constitutional government) it becomes clear that fascism and communism are different forms of socialism.
During the American War of Independence the battle cry was "No king but Jesus!" We should oppose those who are saying, in essence “We have no king but Caesar." (John 19:15; consider Acts 17:6-7)
Messiah, Governor of the Nations of the Earth
By Alexander M'Leod
Biblical Worldview Of Government
By Rusty Lee Thomas
Basic Principles of Christian Civil Government
By David McAllister
The Bible and Government
Christianity & Capitalism
By Richard Doster
Foundations of Free Enterprise
By Grace Cary
Socialism is Not Compassionate, and Why This Should Matter to Christians
Fascism and Communism/Socialism
By Ayn Rand
Why Our Schools Teach Socialism
By Joe Larson
Hitler was a Leftist
You Can Trust the Communists (to be Communists)
By Dr. Fred C. Schwarz
The Heart, Mind and Soul of Communism
By Dr. Fred Schwarz
What is the Liberal Left and What is its Goal?
Separation of Church and State: Has it gone too far?
By Mark Shelby
The Myth of the Separation of Church and State
The False Separation Of Church and State
By Dennis T. Peacocke
Kingdom of God vs. Socialism
Wed, Mar 23rd - 10:46AM
Why I Disagree With Premillennialism
In 1990 an issue of "Israel My Glory" included an article refuting postmillennialism, and the author used so many logic fallacies, baseless assumptions, and straw man arguments that I began suspecting that there may be some substance to the opposing arguments if the author had to rely on emotion and assumption instead of Scripture and logic to prove his point. Besides, Scripture itself, comparing Scripture with Scripture, is the key to understanding Scripture: Bible passages must be understood in relation to context and the whole Bible, and difficult passages must be understood in relation to clear passages. (Psalm 119:104,130; Proverbs 2:6; I Corinthians 2:13; II Timothy 2:15; 3:16-17) I began doing a detailed study of Bible prophecy using a Reference Bible and Bible Dictionary and frequently visiting the library to research the meaning of the language, grammar, setting, and historical background of passages, and was thus led to reject dispensationalism. (II Timothy 2:14-15; I encourage the reader to study the matter further.) When I began using the internet a few years ago I found that many conservative scholars hold the same viewpoint based on study and respect for the Bible.
Why do so many premillennialists automatically label any who disagree as modernists, liberals, or heretics, and make premillennialism a criterion for Christian fellowship or a measurement of spirituality, or assume that their pet theories are above scrutiny? Consider a few problems with the premillennial interpretation of Scripture:
-The alleged signs of the second coming or signs of the end times have no Scriptural basis. For example, where does the Bible say that the establishment of the modern nation of Israel relates to the second coming or the end or fulfillment of "the times of the Gentiles?" Many Bible prophecies that are being applied to the second coming are fulfilled prophecies (e.g., Return from Babylonian captivity, destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD, etc.). Many insist on interpreting every passage of Bible prophecy to be a literal narration of end time events regardless of context and setting. Many twist and distort facts and Scriptures to make every current event fit the mold of pet theories about the fulfillment of Bible prophecy. Many theories and predictions are the result of cross referencing unrelated passages of Bible prophecy. When someone makes a ministry of making predictions and one or some of his predictions prove to be correct it is often assumed that this puts him and all his teachings above scrutiny. This certainly is not rightly dividing God's Word. (II Timothy 2:15)
-The Bible does not say that world conditions will or must progressively go from bad to worse before the rapture. When a minister points out that the Bible does not give signs to indicate that Christ will return at a predictable time or within a particular generation, many inevitably refer to II Peter 3:3-4 and imply that such denials are signs of the times. But note that II Peter 3:4 does not mention a denial of "signs," it mentions the denial of the "promise," and a denial that it is possible for man to know the time of the second coming acknowledges that our Lord will return. Note also that II Peter 3:4 refers to people who are looking for signs. On the other hand, how many who have claimed to know when Christ will return have ever been right?
-Matthew 24 is a prophecy about the end of the Jewish world which centered on Jerusalem and the temple (Destruction of Jerusalem 70 AD); consider the context and setting. (Matthew 24:1-3) Matthew 24:14 was fulfilled before the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD. (Romans 10:18; Colossians 1:6,23) Matthew 24:29 uses an Old Testament figure of speech for national disaster. (Consider Isaiah 13:10; Ezekiel 32:7; Joel 2:10; 3:15) There were survivors of the destruction of 70 AD; over 97,000 were taken captive, many of whom were sold into slavery. (Matthew 24:22,40,41) Jerusalem was destroyed within the lifetime of those then living. (Matthew 24:34) Matthew 24:15,16 refers to the prophecy of the seventy weeks in Daniel 9:24-27. Calculating a day for a year (Ezekiel 4:6) means that 69 weeks (62 + 7) is 483 years, which would bring us to the year Christ was baptized and began His public ministry. (Daniel 9:25) Christ was crucified about 3 1/2 years later; in other words, "in the midst of the week" He was "cut off." (Daniel 9:26,27) "Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression...." (Daniel 9:24) Note that Stephen emphasized how Israel's response to God revealed character, and his death led to a persecution and a dispersal of Christians from Jerusalem. (Acts 7:51-53; 8:1-4; consider Matthew 23:33-36) "And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week...." (Daniel 9:27) Cornelius was converted about four years after the crucifixion of Christ, and until his conversion the preaching of the Gospel was limited to Jews, Jewish proselytes, and Samaritans who kept the Mosaic Law. Before Cornelius became a Christian it had not been revealed that Gentiles were to be received into the church as Gentiles and did not have to first become Jews in order to become Christians. (Acts 10:1-48; 11:18) In 66 A.D., Roman forces surrounded Jerusalem and made a thrust up to the temple walls, and then withdrew for no apparent reason. Then the Christians fled to the mountains as instructed. (Matthew 24:16)
-II Timothy 3:1-13 is not a description of world conditions during the end times. The term "last days" refers to the whole Christian era. (II Timothy 3:1; Joel 2:28-32; Acts 2:16-21; Hebrews 1:1-2; II Peter 3:2-3) “Houses” in II Timothy 3:6 and similar passages refer to churches, as the early Christians usually met for public worship in private homes. (Romans 16:5; I Corinthians 6:19; Colossians 4:15; Philemon 2; II John 10) Paul’s instruction “from such turn away” makes it clear that the previously described conditions existed at that time. (II Timothy 3:5)
-The argument for a completely literal hermeneutic is self-defeating as those who use this argument to prove premillennialism also teach that some parts of the Bible are figurative, allegorical, or typical. E.g., dispensationalists argue for a literal interpretation of every detail of the Book of Revelation but do not themselves interpret everything in Revelation literally. Also consider: How can we put the second coming of Christ before the Millennium without doing violence to the connection between the nineteenth and twentieth chapters of Revelation? If Revelation 20:4 speaks of a literal bodily resurrection then why did John specify that he "saw the souls?" What is the basis for insistence that the Millennium has to be a literal one thousand year period? (Consider II Peter 3:8)
-Matthew 7:13-14 is descriptive, not prescriptive. In the context of the time few Jews would recognize Jesus and many would be destroyed in the destruction of Jerusalem. (Luke 19:44)
- Premillennialism says that God is working through two distinct bodies of people, natural Israel and the Church, to fulfill His purposes concerning the second coming and the Millennium, and that the goal of the Church is to be raptured in a premillennial second coming, and God's plan for natural Israel is the establishment of an earthly kingdom after the second coming. God’s covenant with natural Israel was a conditional covenant. (Deuteronomy 4:23,26-27; 28:15,49-53; Jeremiah 31:36; Micah 3:9-12) The Old Testament requirement of the obedience of faith and genuine repentance removed Israel as a special nation, as natural Jews as a people cast off God’s Word for their human traditions and rejected Christ. (Numbers 15:30-31; Matthew 15:1-9; 21:43; John 8:33-44) Because of misapplication of Old Testament prophecy the question of whether a Gentile could be a Christian without first becoming a Jew was one of the great issues of the first century, but the New Testament makes it clear that the real issue was whether anyone can really be considered a Jew without first becoming a Christian. The Church is a continuing body in the Old Testament and the New Testament and the New Testament Church is the fulfillment of Old Testament prophecy concerning Israel. (Acts 2:16-21; 15:15-17; Romans 2:28-29; 9:6-8; Galatians 3:7,16-19,24-29; 4:21-31; Hebrews 10:15-17; 12:22-24; I Peter 2:9)
-The second coming of Christ will bring the sudden destruction of the heavens and the earth, not the establishment of an earthly kingdom. (II Peter 3:10-12)
-There will be a general resurrection of the dead. (Matthew 5:29; I Corinthians 15:26,51-55)
-Premillennialism promotes a neutrality or isolation that rejects or prevents interaction between Christianity and culture. It encourages believers to withdraw from society and be neutral as a result of preoccupation with speculations about things which they obviously do not and cannot know. (Matthew 5:13-16; Acts 17:6-7; 26:18; note that Christ came to destroy the works of the Devil – I John 3:8)
- Jesus Christ is the present ruler of the earth and the end will come after He has destroyed all dominion, authority and power (Acts 2:32-35; 1 Corinthians 15:24-26; Hebrews 1:13; 10:13)
-Premillennialism contradicts Scriptures on the growth of the kingdom. (Psalm 2:8; 22:27; 47:9; 72:11; 86:9-10; Daniel 2:35,44; Isaiah 9:7; 11:9; 66:23; Matthew 13:31-33) Note that if you plant seeds in your garden or field and then later look at the seeds or watch your garden or field at any one particular point and time between planting and harvest it might appear that nothing is happening, and this is also true of the Christianization of the whole world. (Matthew 13:31-33; Mark 4:26-28; Luke 17:20)
-Christians are commissioned to convert nations as well as individuals. (Matthew 28:18-20; Revelation 15:4; note that when Christianity has dominance it will be by consent – Luke 17:20-21)
-Premillennialism limits the scope of the Gospel. (John 3:16-17; 12:32; Romans 5:15-21; I Timothy 2:1-6; I John 2:2; 4:4; Revelation 5:9; 7:9; 14:6)
-Scriptures present the church as victorious while premillennialism sees a mere remnant of believers remaining when Christ returns. (Matthew 16:17-19; John 12:31; 16:7-11; Luke 10:17-19; Acts 26:16-18; II Corinthians 10:3-5; Colossians 1:13-14; I John 4:4)
An Examination Of Dispensationalism
By William E. Cox
The Application Of The Scriptures: A Biblical Refutation Of Dispensationalism
By Arthur W. Pink
Is The Pretribulation Rapture Biblical?
By Brian Schwertley
Moses Or Christ? Paul's Reply To Dispensational Error
By Charles D. Alexander
By Cornelis P. Venema
Paul's Theology Of Israel's Future: A Nonmillennial Interpretation Of Romans 11
By Lee Irons
Problems With Dispensationalism
By William Kilgore
Millennial Views Debate
Matthew 24 and the Great Tribulation
By Brian Schwertley
But Is It In The Bible?
By Gary DeMar
Hermeneutics in the Book of Revelation
By Greg Bahnsen
The Triumph Of The Church: A Biblical Defense Of Postmillennialism
By William Einwechter
ALWAYS VICTORIOUS! THE EARLIEST CHURCH NOT PRE- BUT POSTMILLENNIAL
Eschatology, Bible Prophecy, Last Things, Dispensationalism, Millenium, The Rapture
Myths "Against" Postmillennialism
By Loraine Boettner
Two Views Of Civil Government: Puritanism vs. Pietism
By Jay Rogers
Mon, Mar 21st - 1:28AM
Extra-Biblical Traditions & Taboos
Wed, Mar 9th - 10:33PM
My People Are Destroyed For Lack Of Knowledge
Tue, Mar 8th - 6:27PM
Jehovah's Witnesses Proclaim Another Gospel
“And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” (Mark 16:15)
“I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.” (Galatians 1:6-8)
“But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.” (II Corinthians 11:3-4)
It should be noted that the command of Mark 16:15 does not specify the method that Christians must use. I certainly do not say this to criticize or discourage visitation work or any church visitation programs; such efforts should be commended and encouraged. But Watchtower publications use Acts 20:20 to insist that house-to-house witnessing is a Christian obligation and that Jehovah's Witnesses are the only true Christians because other so-called Christian groups do not go witnessing door to door. Why does the Watchtower Society avoid the possibility that Acts 20:20 refers to house-churches, since the early Christians usually met for worship in private homes? (Romans 16:5; I Corinthians 6:19; Colossians 4:15; II Timothy 3:6; Philemon 2) Even if Acts 20:20 did not mean house-churches, how would this support the Watchtower assertions? Are Christians in every age and situation obliged to do everything the first-century Christians did? (Question for JWs: Does Acts 4:32 mean that you must give up all your personal property so that it can be distributed among the more needy JWs at the Kingdom Hall?)
The point is that the message is the main issue and not the method of proclaiming that message, and even if Jehovah’s Witnesses were right about the method Christians are obligated to use to proclaim the Gospel, they have the wrong message. The Gospel preached by Christ, the Apostles, and Bible-believing Christians throughout Christian history is the death, burial, and literal resurrection of Christ through which sinners can be justified (declared righteous) through faith in the person and work of Jesus Christ when they repent. (John 3:13-15; Acts 4:15-19; I Corinthians 15:1-4)
What is the Gospel being proclaimed by Jehovah’s Witnesses? The Watchtower gives this definition:
Let the honest-hearted person compare the kind of preaching of the gospel of the Kingdom done by the religious systems of Christendom during all the centuries with that done by Jehovah’s Witnesses since the end of World War I in 1918. They are not one and the same kind. That of Jehovah’s Witnesses is really “gospel,” or “good news,” as of God’s heavenly kingdom that was established by the enthronement of his Son Jesus Christ at the end of the Gentile Times in 1914. (The Watchtower 5/1/81, p.17)
But what is the Gospel according to the Word of God? The Gospel preached by Christ, the Apostles, and Bible-believing Christians throughout Christian history is the death, burial, and literal resurrection of Christ through which sinners can be justified (declared righteous) through faith in Jesus Christ when they repent. (John 3:13-15; Acts 10:39-41; I Corinthians 15:1-4) The resurrection was central to the preaching of the Apostles. (Acts 3:15; 4:1-2; 10:39-41; 17:18; 24:15) There is no salvation without the bodily resurrection of Christ. (Romans 10:9-10; I Corinthians 15:13-18) Denial of the bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ is calling Him accursed, for this would mean that He died under judgment of sin and is still under that judgment. (I Corinthians 12:3)
Jesus said that His body would be resurrected, and after the resurrection He verified this. (Luke 24:36-43; John 2:19-21) The Watchtower Society asserts that Christ was raised up as a spirit creature, and that He materialized a body to make Himself visible. But where is the Scriptural evidence to back up that claim? Watchtower publications use two accounts about Christ not being recognized by those who knew Him as proof that He was resurrected in a different form. The Watchtower Society claims that the disciples on the road to Emmaus did not recognize Christ because He was in a different form than when He was crucified. But this interpretation ignores the context. The disciples did not recognize Christ because He did not will it so. After their faith was tested He opened their eyes and they recognized Him. (Luke 26:16,31) The Watchtower Society claims that Christ appeared to Mary as the gardener. But the context makes it clear that it was Mary who made the mistake of thinking Christ was the gardener. (John 20:15-16)
A favorite passage among Jehovah’s Witnesses is I Corinthians 15:50, which says "flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God." The term "flesh and blood" occurs only five times in the New Testament, and in each case the reference is to natural man and not to literal flesh and blood. (Matthew 16:17; I Corinthians 15:50; Galatians 1:16; Ephesians 6:12; Hebrews 2:14) Natural man, man in his present earthly nature, cannot inherit the kingdom of God; natural man needs the new birth. (John 3:3-7; I Corinthians 15:39-50)
Salvation is a personal experience with Jesus Christ and is through the finished work of Calvary. (John 3:13-16; Acts 2:21; 10:43; Romans 5:1-2,8-11; I Corinthians 15:1-4; II Corinthians 5:17-18; Titus 3:5-6; I Peter 1:3; I John 5:20) Jehovah’s Witnesses do acknowledge that faith is essential for salvation but they add works to faith, and Watchtower publications teach that one must be an active Jehovah’s Witness and obedient to the Watchtower Society to really be saved. Is believing in Jesus Christ sufficient for salvation or must we combine faith and good works to qualify for salvation? Note that the New Testament says that salvation is by faith alone without works almost two hundred times. (Consider John 3:15; 5:24; 11:25; 12:46; 20:31; Acts 16:30-31; Romans 3:20; 4:5; Galatians 2:16; Ephesians 2:8-9; Titus 3:5; etc..; also compare Acts 16:31 with Acts 16:34 and note that believing in Jesus and believing in God are presented as identical acts) “Exercising faith” by doing good works is not what saves. Good works follow salvation but are not the cause of salvation. While genuine faith produces good works, it is faith alone that brings salvation and not good works. (John 3:16,18; Romans 1:16-17; 4:5; I Corinthians 3:13-15; II Thessalonians 1:8-10; Titus 1:16; I Peter 1:3-10; James 2:14-16; consider Isaiah 64:6)
How can proclaiming “another gospel” mean that Jehovah’s Witnesses are true Christians or that they have the only true Christian religion?
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